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Monday, April 04, 2011

Think Communism's Not that Bad? Think Again.

Mind Control. The New York Times has an article on the recently re-opened "National Museum of China," located in Tiananmen Square, the location of the bloody Tiananmen Square Massacre on June 4, 1989. Ironically, but not surprisingly, the museum contains not one mention of the incident. I have included a few excerpts from the article below. The discussion of the rampant revisionist history in this museum is painfully amusing - those same people who would wish socialism and communism upon the United States would hardly be delighted at the prospect of complete State control of mind and freedom...

At the elaborately renovated National Museum of China in Tiananmen Square, visitors interested in the recent history of the world’s fastest rising power can gaze at the cowboy hat that Deng Xiaoping once wore when he visited the United States, or admire the bullhorn that President Hu Jintao used to exhort people to overcome hardship after the Sichuan earthquake in 2008. But if their interests run to the Cultural Revolution that tore the country apart from 1966 to 1976 and resulted in millions of deaths, they will have to search a back corner of the two-million-square-foot museum, which will complete its opening this month, for a single photograph and three lines of text that are the only reference to that era...

In the 1990s, museum curators proposed a much franker look at the problems that led to the current era of reform. Initially, they designed a section called “10 years of tortuous development” on the 1950s and ’60s, including the Great Leap Forward’s devastating famine, according to Kirk Denton, a professor at Ohio State University who is writing a book on China’s museums. Curators proposed a similar section in the current exhibit, arguing that this era was decades in the past and the party was now strong enough to withstand criticism. That idea was rejected, however, after a lengthy debate, according to Ministry of Culture officials. In the end, the famine, widely regarded as the worst in recorded history, is only euphemistically mentioned by the phrase that “the project of constructing socialism suffered severe complications.” The Cultural Revolution was reduced to the photograph and brief caption.

“We wanted to celebrate China,” Mr. Tian said. “I think that’s understandable.”

Would encourage you to read the entire article for a reminder of why I am constantly dealing with the subject of Communism, internationally - but particularly as it affects the United States.

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