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China's State-Run TV Uses Daily Show Clip To Demonize US, Viewers Point Out The Irony

from the isn't-it-ironic dept

By now we should all be aware that in many arenas the United States and China are engaged in a giant political pissing match. Everyone by now is also aware of how afraid the Chinese government is of their citizens getting their hands on any information or news that the government hasn't scrubbed more clean than someone with OCD after exiting a sewer. Between porn, those terrifying monks in Tibet, and the infamous Great Firewall, it's all on lock down in what will ultimately be a failed attempt to stifle political criticism from the masses. I say it will ultimately fail because even when China's government does release something that has been scrubbed, it has the potential to become a flashpoint for blowback.

And that's exactly what happened recently when state-run media used a Daily Show clip in which Jon Stewart bashes the US government to play "poke the American bear."

CCTV recently used a Jon Stewart clip to lay into the U.S. over the Guantanamo Bay political stalemate. As SCMP [South China Morning Post] points out, state television's attempt to poke fun at the U.S. with Stewart backfired online in China, with people saying that CCTV was being hypocritical and missing the irony.
That irony, of course, is that the Chinese state-run media, whose stated role is to serve the Communist party's interests, attempted to demonize America with a clip that brilliantly showed that our media is free to critique our own government. This is something that wouldn't have been permitted in China, a fact not lost on the online community there.
"There are so many problems happening domestically that you choose not to broadcast every day, but instead choose to smell the farts of other countries," one Chinese commenter wrote in video's comment section.
"This is our country's mainstream media... They just want to divert our attention to problems [of other countries] away from poisonous ginger, tainted milk, gutter oil and undrinkable tap water," quipped another.
Now, there are many reasons why oppressive censorship of information just isn't going to work any longer, and perhaps it never really did, but this example of scrubbed information having the exact opposite effect on China's people is a wonderful reason for hope. It's been said that on a long enough time table, everybody's chances for survival goes to zero. I'd make the same argument for oppressive regimes. Eventually, the Chinese people will get tired of being treated like babies, and it looks like censorship fails even when you do it "right."



Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    wallow-T, May 10th, 2013 @ 5:55pm

    A yarn I remember from years ago... of course I have no source, could just be a yarn...

    In World War II, an Italian defector from the Fascist forces was asked what motivated him to defect. He said that his leadership had given his troops copies of "The Grapes of Wrath" to read, to show how terrible America was. But the defector thought about it, and decided he wanted to be a part of a country where such a book could be published.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 10th, 2013 @ 5:56pm

    Future reference, please don't link Kotaku unless it's vitally necessary.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 10th, 2013 @ 6:02pm

    I figured they wouldn't show any show outside of China for fear of people seeing the outside world.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 10th, 2013 @ 6:02pm

    Re:

    My personal opinion would have been to link the original SCMP article instead of the one that Kotaku digested and regurgitated again, which is almost the majority of content that Kotaku produces anymore.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 10th, 2013 @ 6:10pm

    Re:

    They wouldn't allow their internet to contact the outside world if that was the case. Now they're stuck in the rut of wanting to keep their populace seeing only what they want and wanting to have enough communication with the outside world where they keep giving them money.

    It's an unwinnable game in the long term.

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous, May 10th, 2013 @ 6:21pm

    The US does a good enough job of demonizing itself without China's help.

     

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  7.  
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    Zos (profile), May 10th, 2013 @ 6:45pm

    Re:

    you're thinking of north korea.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 10th, 2013 @ 6:51pm

    The PRC has liberties similar to the USA.
    You could stand in front of the White House and protest Obama.
    You could also stand in Tiananmen Square and protest Obama.

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    Grant, May 10th, 2013 @ 9:27pm

    Re:

    I know that the 1980's soap opera "Dallas" is credited by some as causing the fall of communism in Romania.

    source: http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2008-04-27/opinions/36883730_1_larry-hagman-southfork-ranch-capit alism

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, May 10th, 2013 @ 9:29pm

    Shit I let my friends in China run encrypted traffic though my connection almost daily.

    It would be better to use a VPN, but I rather it be me just so I can say HAHA FUCKERS. "Childish I know.."

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 10th, 2013 @ 11:53pm

    This is the sort of "China-style" censorship that Chris Dodd wanted for SOPA. Expensive, misleading, untruthful, and an absolute failure at that.

    Whoever insisted that SOPA was, for all intents and purposes, implemented in US law, must be proud of China and its melamine milk.

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    Tom Anderson, May 11th, 2013 @ 1:46am

    Golden

    "There are so many problems happening domestically that you choose not to broadcast every day, but instead choose to smell the farts of other countries," one Chinese commenter wrote in video's comment section"

    Such a good comment! I approve of this message.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2013 @ 3:40am

    Re: Golden

    Apparently, since it still exists, China approves of the message as well.

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    malkavian techie, May 11th, 2013 @ 7:54am

    "It's been said that on a long enough time table, everybody's chances for survival goes to zero."

    this is true of everything.
    btw, nice fight club reference

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2013 @ 8:43am

    Re: Re: Ignorance is King!

    I'm from Romania, and I have actively participated in the revolution...
    So let me tell you: it was all about the most basic human needs and instincts, such as: hunger, fear, self-preservation instinct, freedom, etc; and it had nothing to do with American soap operas, or other similar nonsense!
    Hell, 70% of the population lived outside TV signal coverage (only the biggest urban centers had, a very limited, TV signal coverage); and only 17% of the population owned a TV in the first place!!!

    You remind me of the idiot who said Shakespeare created his brilliant writings because of... copyright !!!
    It never ceases to amaze me how American-centric and ignorant some people are.
    And, in other news, the Franch Bastille day is, because of... ummm, Coca Cola (yaaay USA, USA, USA)...

     

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  16.  
    icon
    Jesse (profile), May 11th, 2013 @ 11:51am

    "It's been said that on a long enough time table, everybody's chances for survival goes to zero. I'd make the same argument for oppressive regimes."

    This statement makes the dangerous assumption that democracy and freedom are natural endpoints of social evolution. Democracy came about in the West through very specific circumstances, and it could dissolve in the future.

    If it's something worth having it must be protected and defended from those that try everyday to turn our country into China (falsely believing that censorship and the erosion of civil liberties is the best way to defend the country). We cannot assume or take for granted achieving and preserving freedom takes hard work.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    icon
    Jay (profile), May 11th, 2013 @ 1:05pm

    Re: Re: Re: Ignorance is King!

    How did Decree 770 help?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 11th, 2013 @ 4:35pm

    Re: Grapes of Wrath

    There is also a story that the movie (1940) was initially allowed to play in the Soviet Union because of its portrayal of poverty in the US, but was removed because even in poverty, Americans could still own a car....

     

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  19.  
    identicon
    Romanian, May 12th, 2013 @ 6:47am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: @Jay

    It increased the population, nothing more...
    The authors of Freakonomics (from the link you provided), are factually wrong (regarding the Romanian revolution):
    -"Decreţei are exactly the same people who spearheaded the effort to violently overthrow Ceauşescu's regime in 1989".
    Nope! (very wrong, actually)...

    The "spearheading" was done by completely different people:
    -1- the start was done by elderly religious ethnic Hungarians, from the Protestant Church in Timisoara (town).
    -2- after some time, local elderly religious ethnic Romanians joined them, from the Orthodox Church in Timisoara.
    -3- after the initial repression, the students from the university joined in.
    -4- after work, the factory workers from the large industrial centers joined in.
    -5- and then, everybody joined in (the general population).
    -6- the revolution spread everywhere in Romania
    -7- the lover echelons of the government and Communist party joined in, and started organizing (and taking over the leadership positions);
    -8- the popular revolution turned in to a Coup d'État.
    -9- the army joined in.
    -10- the police, and everything else (except the secret service, and other loyalists), joined the fighting
    -11- chaotic and blind fighting, everybody shooting at everybody (the vast majority of the victims, are caused by "friendly fire").
    -12- the secret service (and other loyalists), give up and abandon the dictator.
    -13- the dictatorial couple is captured and executed.
    -14- the lover echelons of the government and Communist party take all the power and wealth in Romania (and the stupid and brainwashed shipple of Romania keep them in power, happily ever after).
    -15- the end.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Ray, May 12th, 2013 @ 10:55am

    Re:

    You're thinking of North Korea. The Chinese firewall is so full of cracks that it's a wonder so many Chinese still tolerate the Communist Party.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 12th, 2013 @ 12:05pm

    Re:

    The version I heard was that the communist party had The Grapes of Wrath (the movie) played on USSR television to show how terrible the plight of the American lower classes was and the viewers came away from the movie saying, "In American, even the poorest person owns an automobile!"

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 12th, 2013 @ 12:44pm

    Implying US media is any better in reality.... really ?

    Oppressive censorship VERSUS media blackouts, disinformation and overwhelming distractions.


    The American media model of information suppression is far more evolved than China's.

    Still the same shit... just different methods.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 12th, 2013 @ 2:41pm

    Re:

    There's a similar tale about grapes of wrath being given to soviet soldiers who were impressed that in America people could own their own cars.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 12th, 2013 @ 7:20pm

    Re:

    im in china, reading this article.

    dumbass

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 13th, 2013 @ 12:00am

    Re: Re: Golden

    Well, the unperson who wrote it doesn't so I don't know what to think

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 13th, 2013 @ 12:01am

    Re: Implying US media is any better in reality.... really ?

    Same shit different toilet

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
    icon
    Niall (profile), May 13th, 2013 @ 2:15am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: @Jay

    Amen to #14, unfortunately. Romanian governments haven't exactly been wonderful lately, especially with Ponta's constitutional mangling.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28.  
    icon
    Ninja (profile), May 13th, 2013 @ 3:21am

    "There are so many problems happening domestically that you choose not to broadcast every day, but instead choose to smell the farts of other countries," one Chinese commenter wrote in video's comment section.

    "This is our country's mainstream media... They just want to divert our attention to problems [of other countries] away from poisonous ginger, tainted milk, gutter oil and undrinkable tap water," quipped another.


    Where are those so I can hit the funny button?! ;)

    Nowadays it's ironies from both sides. The US is regularly calling out China for the censorship when it's up an running right inside their borders too, just in alternative, light clothing.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    icon
    Dave (profile), May 13th, 2013 @ 6:46am

    As Will Rogers once said...

    "We’ll hold the distinction of being the only Nation in the history of the world that ever went to the poor house in an automobile."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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