不能免俗

ZM 跟我提到最近因为西藏问题以及奥运火炬的遭遇而惹起广大网民的担忧. 暴力倾向的节节升级有威胁到奥运期间北京市区的安全问题.

我头一个反应是,怎么会?! 我们伟大祖国的最大优势之一就是说一不二. 保证首都的治安怎么会是问题?不可能像散漫自由的所谓民主笨国家(比如美国啦,以色列啊)让炸弹随便跑的.

但是这么一吓,倒是真开始注意关于奥运火炬的来龙去脉起来. 周末在网上看到一篇小留学生写的参加伦敦火炬接力时和ZD针锋相对的事情,而BBC却一边倒地报道ZD那边,要不是在现场,或者看到这些文章,光看BBC媒体报道会以为铺天盖地都是一个声音.

多么的讽刺. 一直指责中国新闻封锁的BBC其实自己一样黑.统统是天下乌鸦.

在这个问题本身, 我自己其实并没有很强烈的立场. 因为一方面觉得他们独立出去也很难能不靠任何列强的独立国家, 也就无所谓独立,如果不独立,他们确实是很不同很不同的一个民族.

把这篇文章转给家人朋友. 很快收到妹妹的简短回信. 她用了很强的词表示对文章作者的不屑. 我在 IM 上捉到她,问怎么回事? 她愤愤的说这帮**都被洗脑了.

隔着电脑都可以感觉到她强烈的情绪. 接下来的几句对话十分不堪. 我草草收了线.心里非常堵得慌,很难受,但也说不出到底是为了什么难受.因为我真的没有很强烈的立场啊.但是强烈感觉到有什么不太对. 无关立场.

接下来的几天更加关切地注意事件发展. 碰上了两篇好文章.

一是文道论西藏: 為西藏問題尋找最大公約數—-期待民族的和解

说起來,西藏問題真是一團迷霧,只要你朝它多走一步,你就會發現原來所相信的任何一種簡單立場都能碰上理據十足的反駁。不只現在的西方媒體造假與中國傳媒監控各惹嫌疑,歷史上的詭局謎團更是令人眼花撩亂。

如果你認為「自古以來」,西藏就是中國的一部分;你將會發現要花很多時間去解釋古代宗主國對藩屬的關係為什麼等同於現代民族國家和它的轄下省份(越南反而確曾是中華王朝的一省)。

反過來說,如果你相信在「中國入侵」之前,西藏是片連丁點暴力都不可能發生的和平淨土;那麼你又該如何理解14 任達賴喇嘛裏頭只有3位順利活到成年的事實呢?

假如你覺得文革對西藏的破壞是不可饒恕的,你或許應該知道當年打砸佛寺佛像的主力之一竟然是藏人。

假如你認為中央對西藏的宗教自由已經足夠寬容,甚至准許流亡在外的眾多上師返鄉建寺(最有名的當屬頂果欽哲法王);你可能也曉得現在的西藏小學生是連隨身護符也不准帶的。

另一篇是来自赋格的博客,提到伦敦电讯报记者 Richard Spencer 报道的目前西藏矛盾的激发事件:原来竟是为了一只气球,两只羊. 而且是回民和藏民之间的矛盾.

Richard Spencer 博客上还有另外一篇不错的报道分析为什么西方媒体的报道失实.

这些文章让我平静下来.因为在这些混乱之中,原来还是有人能够理性思维,寻找事实. 并不是所有的人都在疯狂的骂人. 我也因此可以学到新东西. (其实这一切都要谢谢恶人谷! 两篇文章都是那里看到的.)

后来旧金山的火炬接力从闹剧开始,本来有希望演变成恐怖暴力剧,但是被我们市长给化解成一出猫捉老鼠的喜剧. 真是大快我心. 在这里,我全力支持我们市长.嘿嘿.

本以为到此告一段落了.结果今天在公司内网又爆发出一场无休无止的大战来.看得我目瞪口呆.原来我的同事们也没比街上那些上窜下跳的高明到哪里.
事實証明俺公司同事還是非常孺子可教滴.
這場周四上午爆發的辯論,在歷時四十八小時將近八百條回複,參與者三四十人,觀戰者好幾百口子,成了公司落成以來最熱火朝天地一次討論.幾乎所有人都聽說
有這麼回事,不計其數的同事跟蹤閱讀如初如醉欲罷不能,最經典語錄是”好像是在看一場超壯觀的出軌火車奔往懸崖.不知道什麼樣的慘案系于一發.”
在事件爆發二十四小時後,大家的情緒明顯從上竄下跳變成了擺事實講道理並且伴隨很多令人深思的論點論據. 營養大大的. 驕傲一下. :)

最后再补一篇文章, 美国视角 (其实是旧金山愤青视角!)

Why do they hate China…, Well, you have to hate someone…

by Justin Raimondo

本来想摘抄几段来翻译成中文.翻译了一两段就觉得得刹车. 可能又回到当年和旧精魂讨论过的看英文盲目觉得客观,同样内容用中文一说就觉得是无理取闹. 这篇文章翻出来整个是中文互联网上的愤青嘴脸.所以我还是不要煽风点火了.

大概意思我总结一下吧. 现在为什么80%参加ZD游行的都是白人? 我想这里面可能有很多和八十年代美国反日情绪很相像的因素在里面.
一是最近经济不好,大家看着中国蒸蒸日上很眼红,
嫉妒之外,还是有歧视在里面.因为如果是英国法国经济大好,估计不会带来这么重的反感.因为肤色不同可能就让人心里的优越感受到了打击.

所以有人说中国愤青上窜下跳显示了中国人自信不足.那么外国人上窜下跳可能是自信受到打击吧?

再有就是美国那些好莱坞左派把西藏渲染的好像都是爱和平从不乱来的弱者,而汉人是强权是侵略. 所以才有这么多西方青年盲目跟随,
因为和他们七十年代的和平示威不谋而合.很有惺惺相惜的感觉.其实他们怎么知道西藏当年农奴制的那些残忍以及现在示威时对其他族裔的追打?
不是说西藏是强还是弱,只是想说藏人也是人,他们的社会也和任何其他族裔一样有黑暗有光明,而已.

说到底还是大家都在喊口号,而没有仔细去研究口号后面的事实罢了.

然后我突然明白那天和妹妹的聊天让我那么堵. 不是因为她和我立场不同.其实我还是没有站队,到今天都没有. 让我难受的是面对这种非理性的漫骂. 没有思考,没有事实论证,只是一味的荷尔蒙高涨的青少年行为.

让我想起文革时的红卫兵(注:两边人都算上,无论中美,无论是向着谁的). 一样的狂热,一样的天真,一样的无知.

不能免俗》上有18条评论

  1. “然后我突然明白那天和妹妹的聊天让我那么堵. 不是因为她和我立场不同.其实我还是没有站队,到今天都没有. 让我难受的是面对这种非理性的漫骂. 没有思考,没有事实论证,只是一味的荷尔蒙高涨的青少年行为.”

    我也还没有站队.到今天都没有,所以心里也很堵. 我也很难受,面对的不管哪派,似乎都是非理性的谩骂.
    比起XZ,朝鲜半岛上的,似乎更贴近汉文化. 个人而言,DLLM的笑脸总能让我想到”伪善”这个词.还是一种很中国似的伪善笑脸.但是culture genocide,我觉得是在不幸得发生着. 不一定要杀了某某某,不一定要赶走某某某.这种屠杀灭绝不见血,可能就只是在强大的主文化的有型无型压迫下发生吧. 大国主义一直没有离开过,哪怕是满清,满目疮痍的国土,也是天朝. 汉文化一直都下意识地垫着脚尖,高人一等吧.
    however,说XZ的文化保护不够,说中国某某权,某某权又有问题,其实谁都知道,哪个国家都有问题. 有人的地方都有问题. 但是中国从来都是最容易被放枪口上的. 我想,除了冷战以来留下的思维,中国经济发展惹人眼红外,还有很大的原因就是中国的大汉族主义态度吧.就和人一样,太自以为是,又不是那么十全十美,无论对错与否都不霄和周围人做个解释,道个歉什么的. 想来这样的人在身边,也不讨人喜欢的吧.
    其他的,我也不知道说什么了. 蛮喜欢你的blog,中英文都时常浏览.

    Jean的回复:
    Jessie 好. 🙂

    这几天目睹了公司内中美同事之间的辩论. 无法不注意到很多中国同事们为人处事都带着中国政府的影子. 一言不合就指着人家的鼻子要求赔礼道歉. 很有些让人哭笑不得. 另外就是中国文化里对万事需要”合情合理”而且情在理之先. 对逻辑思考,和上面 Meow 提到的 critical thinking 都没有太多的概念. 辩论起来太意气用事了. 冷静不下来. 还有就是爱说”你不了解中国”. 那您倒是给人解释解释解个惑科普一下啊? 这么多同事眼巴巴聚在这里,多好的机会,怎么就一句”你不懂’就完了? 就像你说的,给人的感觉就是超级傲慢.

    我不知道说到底是不是自信不足?所以总觉得被人欺负.其实”理不辨不明”. 有这种说法的中国怎么就忘了怎么辩怎么理了呢?

  2. Yes, I have been suffering from TFS(Tibet Fatigue Syndrome),too, both as a Chinese and as a LibComS (Liberal w/ Common Sense).

    The whole Tibet controversy (some people mentioned “Tibet Discourse”; but what discourse? What meaningful bilateral discussion on this topic has ever happened, or has anything close to a truth-finding discourse even been intended, by any party?), deeply embarasses me as a Chinese person, because I recognize the great degree of benightedness re Tibet on the part of my fellow-Chinese (even those who have since become American nationals), and the subsequent ignorant arrogance.

    But it also embarasses me no end as a Bay Area Liberal: American media’s—recklessly in some cases, carefully in others—worked-up frenzy over the Tibet question seems to have securely lodged its own understanding of this complex issue at the same low beginning point of the learning curve, forever. It is enough to supress any feeling except cynicism, and make a recently-turned 40-year-old feel, well, old.

    Jean: you put it very well in the post above, and some of the sources you quoted round up the issue reasonably well. I only wish to add that one can probably detect a racist undertone in Mia Farrow’s Darfur protest: she referred to China’s admittedly machiavellian manouver in Sudan as the Next Holocaust; HELLO?

    Of course we shall make empathetic allowance for this cry for attention from a bitter menopausal woman with an over-developed sense of perennial outrage and an under-developed intellect, who channels all her frustrations, with her country, the world, and Woody Allen, to a rabid anti-China hyperbole. But the curious lack of dissent from the rest of supposedly more intelligent members of American intelligentsia is rather telling. Why wouldn’t anyone point out to the hag that by this analogy she was trivializing the unspeakable horror of THE Holocaust? Why wouldn’t Jewish scholars speak out and put this intellectual dwarf “in her place”? Is there some hint of acquiesence from the usually sophisticated New York Jewish intellectuals for a shiksa’s paranoia towards ethnic Chinese who’s increasingly entering domestic and international competition in the higher, rarefied stratosphere of professional jobs at which Jews have always exceled?

    Oh, do I sound borderline racist? It is an easy game to play for any party.

    Another anecdote: back in the 80s I was once on a train for summer vacation home. The train’s destination was XiNing, so unsurprisingly I had a young Tibetan couple sitting across from me. They were obviously college students, well groomed, dignified, and dressed in nicely chosen —and very clean—ethnic attires, which I admired very much (the Han’s sartorial sense in the 80s was even more drab than today, hard as it is to believe). But the three college girls (lucky me, right?) sitting in the same cube strongly disagreed. Their silent disapproval was highlighted by the girl whose seat was next to the Tibetans standing up and stomping out with her nostrils tightly pinched shut between her dainty fingers with non-too-clean nails.

    I have no reason to believe this is an everyday experience for Tibetans in Chinese heartland. But I have been wondering what I would have done, if I were Tibetan, and if the above rendevous had happened to me. Would I still be looking into historical “facts” or reasonable discourse? I don’t know.

    Jean的回复:
    During our internal company discussion, people repeatedly pointed out that China kept all journalists out of Tibet. Lacking of information probably brought out the worst of the western media.

    However, during our discussion, someone pointed people to this: One CNN interview transcript on Tibet by an The Economist reporter who was actually in Tibet during the riot and martial law. James Miles interview on Tibet, 3/20/2008
    Original article on the Economist Trashing teh Beijing Road, via The Economist, Mar 19, 2008.

    It was an excellent report. I couldn’t help noticing that having this “exclusive” eyewitness report on a subject that has been so hotly debated , from a highly regarded magazine’s reporter, all failed to bring this to headline of any major western media is pretty sound proof that the western media is biased in this debate. 🙁 Although the merit of having a free media also proved its strength cuz over the weekend New York Time alone had two op-ed pieces on Tibet that can be categorized as fair and rational and fact-based.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/13/opinion/13sperling.html?_r=1&ref=opinion&oref=slogin
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/13/opinion/13forney.html

    I know you don’t like Peter Hessler much, but i find his article in 1999 The Atlantic is pretty good. Check it out
    Tibet Through Chinese Eyes

  3. Meow!

    这两天一直想给你写封信,结果忙到今天才有空。有件事需要澄清一下,那天我跟你争论,其原因不是我站到了哪一派的立场——虽然我确实比较偏心西藏,但还没有达到丧失理智的程度——而是我很不同意你打的比方。你说,要是中国人游行抗议美国的印第安人政策,我会怎么想。我的第一反应是,这是哪儿跟哪儿啊?印第安人现在在抗议美国政府不给他们人权吗?美国有放逐印第安人的精神领袖吗?按照这种想法继续推理下去,难不成中国政府应该让藏人开赌场?诚然,历史上美国政府对印第安人的镇压比中国对西藏的镇压还要残酷,但两者的现状一样吗?如果不完全一样,那打这种比方有什么意义?同类似是而非的比喻还包括法国跟Corsica,美国南北内战,美国西南部与墨西哥,等等等等。就跟动不动搬出希特勒和斯大林一样,这种辩论方式靠的不是逻辑,而是通过人对某件耳熟能详的事物的情感来混淆事实。你指出的那篇旧金山愤青的博客就是这样,以比喻、联想、和个人观点替代事实。看了就让人气愤。

    上面说起我自己对西藏的态度。我去了西藏,在那边看到了很多,了解了很多,交了很好的朋友。我的朋友其实也并不希望西藏独立——就跟你说的一样,他们人少势弱,总得依靠比他们更强大的势力——但是他们没有人权,没有自由,这才是其问题的根本。你又说了,难道其他中国人就有自由吗?呀,那难道藏人就不应该抱怨了吗?这又是哪门子逻辑?藏人根本不把自己当中国人,你有什么办法?他们说,你们汉人自己欺压自己可以,凭什么欺压到我们头上来?中国政府再怎么给西藏甜头,他们就是不领情,这是谁的失误?

    文道的文章写得确实好,好在哪里,不仅仅是他引经据典,以事论事,而是因为他字里行间的诚恳,反思,对双方的理解和同情,而不是热情沸腾的呐喊或冷漠的指责。

    其实我对中国现状的唯一不满是那里没有言论自由。我对西藏现状的最大不满就是我连跟朋友在电话上交谈的机会都没有。所有的电话都被监听,想要知道真相?没门。不管是好是坏,一概封锁消息,关上门料理自家事,是中国的一贯态度。这曾给他们带来了一些便利,但如今带来的更多是麻烦。这种态度贯穿国内各个层面,不仅是政治,就连平常工作也是一样,大家习惯于暗箱操作,走后门,拉关系,背后搞小动作,整个社会都不明就里,没有什么透明度可言。

    没有言论自由,没有开诚布公,没有大众辩论,以至于大部分公民没有独立思想的习惯。Lack of critical thinking. 当然,真要说起独立思考的能力,大部分西方人也没高超到那里去。那么多支持藏独的旁观者,动扎喊着Save Darfur,Save the Planet, Buy local, think global,等等等等,喊起来好听,真正问起来不知所以然。世上的事太复杂,真要摸清就里,谈何容易。但中国人连这种反思的机会都没有,任何言论都可能带来后果。西方的制度虽然好一点,但他们说到底还是一个字:懒。喊着口号随大流太容易了,反正拯救地球拯救比他们更不幸的人是对的,谁站在反对立场谁就该打。法国人英国人怎么想的,我不清楚,但美国的自由派就有这么一种内疚心理,因为自己的国家太富庶,觉得自己欠别人的,于是加倍补偿,要做好事,要有公德,要为世界造福。They’re constantly looking for that moral salvation. Well, salvation is never easy. But chanting after the Dalai Lama certainly makes one feel better. 这就是精神上的快速食品吧,spiritual fast food, easy to swallow and easy on the conscience. I think the state of America can be summarized thus: the conservatives feel too good about themselves, while the liberals try too hard to feel good about themselves.

    说了半天,主要还是想说明,咱俩的立场其实是一样的,只不过在辩证方法上有一些分歧而已。:)继续继续,继续研究,继续愤青吧。

    Jean的回複:
    我这几天在公司内网上观望大批中美愤青上窜下跳,时不时进去搅混水,煽风点火,最后还和了一把稀泥. 开心的不得了.狠狠地过了一下拍砖板的瘾.也终于想明白了我的立场.

    [前面大家在争西藏到底是不是中国的这个问题,从历史文化政治军事的角度大打出手]所以我借机溜进去放毒:

    Personally i found this argument on what-has-been not that important. it is just a matter of war and map drawing by the winner of war. It could all change with another war either physical or cold. why get so caught up in it?

    what would help me to form an opinion is which way –free tibet or not– will prevent ethnic cleansing or minimize it as much as possible. If the PRA is not capable of preventing Han and Hui minority and Tibetans slaughtering each other in Tibet in a measured way (i.e. whether they can emulate the kind of “precision targeting” that US employed when invading/occupying Iraq), then i say, evacuate all Han and Hui out of tibet and let Tibet has it their own way (like how Turkey did their population exchange with Greece during the founding of Republic of Turkey). Tibet maybe left with a weaker economy(<sarcasm>which could also be a good thing, think: cheaper travel expenses for Chinese to go to Tibet!</sarcasm>) and a US/India boss with US/India army stationed there. still better than leave Han and Hui in there to continue the racial tension.

    <sarcasm>
    hack, maybe having an enemy so close by will help Chinese army to be a better army (keep them on their toes), and also help China’s weapon production go up a notch? hey, with all the practice and a hugely inflated defense budget, maybe they could replace US to be the biggest weapon exporter in the world! speaking of world domination. Look how Russia is today, maybe having a fragmented China will keep Chinese communist party in power longer. Last i heard communist party is in vogue again in Russia? it might not be such a bad geopolitical move for china, afterall?

    </ sarcasm >

    what i don’t want to see happening was everyone feeling all self-righteous and demanded Free Tibet, and once that independence is archived on paper, with Han and Hui still mixed with Tibetans inside Tibet, all western media went home and left another “Rwanda” or “Balkan” to its own bloodbath.

    说的好吧?嘿嘿,自己发张奖状.另外,桂今天找到的好东西.你读读,非常好的美国视角:
    Peter Hessler on TIbet

  4. “印第安人现在在抗议美国政府不给他们人权吗?美国有放逐印第安人的精神领袖吗?”

    – That’s hardly a valid defence for US track record on Native Americans. Genocide, you know, was an effective way to quieten future dissent. Casino helps, too. For all the “good intentions” of US’s Indian Reservation policy, reducing a proud people to drunks and card dealers is heck of a “fine moral redemption”; as they say in UK, there are many ways to kill a cat. The result? The despondent minority cannot even produce a “spiritual leader” for the authority to exile.

    I suppose I could avoid the allegation of “shit-youth” by stating with a smugly sad smile that, at the end of the day, it is the Tibetans who should make the decision about their own fate, even though that may turn out to be an irresponsible one that leads to the dream of a Las Vagas in Shangri-la (for what else can Tibet offer economically and independently, apart from a haven for safari-seekers, and aerobic gambling?) But that would have been such a cold-bloodedly reasonable position to take that I’d be deeply ashamed of myself.

    So what is the solution? Meow!

  5. ‘越南反而確曾是中華王朝的一省’
    最近读唐诗百话,施存蜇那本,看他解释诗句,那些诗人们被流放去南蛮之地哪哪哪,动不动就是越南那块.看得时候很吃惊了一下,咦~,越南啊,原来他们流放得比海南还要远啊,杜甫看来是离家近的了呢.
    所以看到这句特别有感受

  6. 旧精魂,

    What’s up, man? Trolling for a flame war? Alright, here’s my clarification. My point was not to defend the American track record of political injustices. I’m perfectly aware that every government has had innocent blood on their hands at one point or another, that a government is not an ethical or moral institution in principle, and that most of the current shouting match basically boils down to the pot calling the kettle black. BUT, I do claim that there’s no parallel in the *current* state of Native Americans in the US vs. Tibetans in China, and that to make such an analogy is a rhetoric, not a truth.

    While we’re are at it, I also think statements such as “if you can’t achieve it yourself, then you have no right to tell me to do it” are logical fallacies. Just because no government can achieve a high ethical standard doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be criticized for their failure. Jesus’s statement of “let he who has not sinned cast the first stone” may sounds similar but is in fact quiet different, because it involves the question of execution. People are entitled to pass their own judgment, but to execute punishments is another matter.

    Anyway, leaving pseudo-logic and on to real speculation and opinion: yes, the state of the affairs is much worse for Native Americans than for the Tibetans. In the history of human kind, some are losers and some are winners, but no one stays a winner and therein lies justice. As for the Tibetans, so what if their fight may indeed ultimately amount to the freedom to open casinos in Shangri-la. Are kids not entitled to their monthly allowance just because they’ll spend it all on bubble gum? Freedom is all about choosing your own mistakes. We can only hope for a peaceful resolution and no bloodshed.

  7. A few comments:

    1. Keep the “flame war” notion to yourself. Resist the temptation to see in others your own impulses.

    2. Don’t put your own words in others’ mouth. Who claimed less-than-saints cannot accuse by their own right? I did not come up with the Native American reference; you did. BTW, since you mentioned Jesus: if we have to take Old and New Testament in one piece, we will have to believe that Mr. Christ is the worst hypocrite of all, and we readers got to deal with a serious choking hazard.

    3. Yes, I believe the individual freedom of choice, too, and I agree that people have a perfect god-given right to do coke or commit suicide. But I sure as hell won’t help them in doing so, and I find a silent witness standard somewhat amoral, if not downright immoral. Since I am talking about what positions outsiders can take that might eventually lead to political action, I would say that, if Tibetans want to be independent, they are welcome to try; but if Tibet Independence is ever to become a legitimate advancement like the Abolition, the leaders and their supporters need to have something better (like a game plan about what they wish to achieve and how to implement) than a hyperbolic slogan. Otherwise don’t blame the more intelligent segments of population in the West as well as in China for their alleged “apathy”.

    Before then, Dalai Lama will do his people a far greater service by chanelling their energy towards major improvement under the status quo. The moral choice for “outsiders” can then be moved to a pragmatic level: what can we do to make Tibetan life better, in a highly autonomous part of China. Who knows, maybe this can even eventually pave the way to broader political freedom for Chinese at large (hence made Dalai Lama “really” deserve his Nobel Prize)? For racial and ethnic “Self Determination” is not an entitlement, but a pursuit of (general, not race-specific) human wellbeing is.

    That’s based on an assessment of WHAT CAN BE DONE, not a pigeon-livered idle expression of WHAT SHOULD BE FELT.

  8. 旧精魂,

    Um, ok, if this is not a flame war, then why do I smell gun powder in the air? 🙂

    Seriously, I’m not trying to provoke you. I was being perfectly friendly and a bit facetious, albeit argumentative. So please, calm down.

    Just because I mentioned Jesus, doesn’t mean I was trying to put those words in your mouth. It was a free association. If it was taken otherwise, then it was my failure to communicate clearly, and I apologize.

    I was not suggesting that the Tibetans should look into developing casinos. (And even if I were, so what? Who’s going to listen to me anyway? Who cares?) Your suggestion of what to do is very pragmatic, as it is essentially advocating for affecting change from within the system. But how do you know the Dalai Lama is not already doing that? Hasn’t he been preaching the ideals of loving thy enemy? Ok ok, I know that’s all worthless “feel good” stuff. But what other concrete suggestions can he make when he is so far removed from the system? What policies can he affect when the Chinese government refuses open dialogue? What else can he do but attempt to first resolve ethnic hatred? What would YOU do, if you were DL?

  9. OMG! 两天不来怎么就打到俺们后院来啦!整个把我们公司的架翻版换了人但是字没换地打了一架.

    Peace! Dude and Dudette.

    Now is my turn to add some oil to the fire.

    1. DL is a nice person. But maybe he is not the best of politicians? Is Exile really a good environment for politicians? Seems like most politicians returning from exile turned into disasters?

    2. Chinese government WILL talk to DL. Because there are some common denominator between the two. Neither wants more violence in Tibet, unlike “Tibet Youth Organization”. If China could talk to the US in the 70’s, we should be confident enough that they will try to talk to DL before he passed away. i.e. in our life time.

    3. i say let’s keep casinos out of tibet. They have enough trouble as is. I think casinos will probably be viewed as another vice that the Hans are introducing to their holy land to corrupt.

    4. i agree lots of the slogan shouters from the west are “feel gooders” and i agree with Meow that they tried too hard to feel good about themselves. I think Orpheus agrees to this, too. right?

    Here is a really good documentary series made by BBC: One Year in Tibet

  10. “…then why do I smell gun powder in the air?…”
    -I am no expert on extrasensory experience, but perhaps it’s because you still got gun-powder residue in the nostrils from your latest war, this being a difficult time for natural-born contrarians and all? Salute to the battle-hardened warrior 😉

    In fact, Dalai Lama and Chinese government have been engaged in talks about the future of Tibet for the last two decades, on and off. We are not privy to the content of the talks, but I suppose CIA is, and therefore some American journalists have, over time, got some idea of what each side wants. The Chinese demand is banal and predictable: national unity, motherland, ethnic harmony, abandoning all hostility and claims to independence, etc, etc. From the Tibetan side, Dalai Lama was, on and off, open to consider “high state of autonomy” (whatever that means), but not giving up on the independence claim. This is negotiable, but the problem is that he claims not just Tibet, but the whole Qinghai, and big chunks of Gansu, Sichuan, Yunnan, etc, basically anywhere there is a sizable Tibetan enclave, and all surrounding wilderness around those enclaves. Some estimated that the total claim add up to a little over one third of China.

    I am sure Mr. Cool D. is fully aware of the nature of his claims. The question is why would a pragmatic and shrewd politician insists on a claim this outlandish, on and off for some 20 years? To make any progress, both parties need to ride down the learning curve, which hasn’t exactly happened. Chinese government…well, you know… but what’s Dalai Lama have in mind?

    My cynical speculation is that Dalai Lama is having so much prestigious fun being Dalai Lama, that winning reasonable concessions and coming to some actual (perhaps limited) power in Tibet will be a big let-down.There are many benignant or ineffectual rulers of impoverished nations around the world and in history, mostly in oblivion, but there is only one Dalai Lama. How else could the leader of a fairly small, poorly developed ethnic community retain the heart and mind of so many people from the West? How else can a statesman pose as a cuddly human teddy bear and rub (bare) shoulders with film stars, fashion designers and supermodels and get away with it? It must be tremendously gratifying, playing Himself on the world stage as One of a Kind.

    What makes DL so adorable to Westerners is not so much unusual inherent merits, but an idol on whom one can project their own wildest idealistic fantasies in our increasingly materialistic world. You feel good because liking Dalai Lama makes you like yourself better.

    If Tibet really won the battle of independence, Dalai Lama would become merely the leader of a pretty poor and inconveniently placed country between China and India. His hands will get dirty, from running a country and getting held responsible for a less-than-perfect government. If he continued to try keep himself “relevant” in the fashion world by “discourse” with comely young models on the propreity of fur, Dalai Lama would be accused of frivolousness and irresponsible to his own people. In short, Dalai Lama will inevitably cease to be “perfect”, and quickly disappear from the “world stage” (for that’s precisely what it is, a stage”.

    If you were Dalai Lama, what would YOU do? “It is fine being Living Budha; thank you.”

    Dalai Lama is a Great Guy, but not a Great Man. “D.L.” also stands for “Dude, Love.”

  11. “What policies can he affect when the Chinese government refuses open dialogue? ”

    -Evidence that he tried?

    “What else can he do but attempt to first resolve ethnic hatred?”
    -Evidence that Dalai Lama ever “attempted to first resolve ethnic hatred”, say, the kind some sizable segments of Tibetans feel towards Han and Hui?

    People have really been lavishing Dalai Lama with too much benefits of doubt, which they would hardly grant to politicians at home. This guy is at the beneficiary end of double standards.

    To answer your question, “What would YOU do, if you were DL?” Heck, I would want to stay Dalai Lama, a Global Exile, forever and ever and ever.

  12. The Westerners’ fascination with Dalai Lama reminds me of David Brooks’s immortal caricature, of “Bobo”.

    A Bobo is a Bourgeois Bohemian, or rather, a bourgeois in heart, with bohemian pretensions. For a person of secure social/financial status, but also of good education that lets him/her see the misery of the world, the deep bourgeoisie materialism inside burns his/her conscience, which requires a salve of superficial spiritual redemption that nevertheless doesn’t necessitate any change of the order of things for the Bobos themselves. That’s where Dalai Lama comes in.

    Of course, at least Bobos have a conscience to self-torment. More than I can say for “shit-youths” in China, “the world-leaders in (heartless) optimism”.

    But it will be good for Bobos to also be conscious of the pitifully limited scope of their own humanism. Allow me to quote Robert Frost’s “Love and a Question”:

    “The bridegroom thought it little to give
    A dole of bread, a purse,
    A heartfelt prayer for the poor of God,
    Or for the rich a curse;

    But whether or not a man was asked
    To mar the love of two
    By harboring woe in the bridal house,
    The bridegroom wished he knew.”

    Ah, what a self-conscious Bobo I am 😉

  13. 旧精魂老师真是能磕啊。俺舍命陪君子哈。

    Contrary to popular beliefs, I’m not a contrarian. Sometimes I play the part of a sophist. But most of the time I’m actually a feel-good idealist. I believe that cynicism is the result of bitter disappointment at the loss of ideals. Hence I make a conscious effort to avoid it. This is not to say that I don’t fall into the trap of sarcasm from time to time. But when it comes to the DL I’m a believer. I say in all seriousness that there are few people in the world who can rival the spirituality of the Tibetans. This is not to say that there aren’t certain benighted individuals among them. But I daresay that the percentage spirituality per capita is higher in Tibet than the rest of the world. 😉 How’s that for wanton idealism? And the DL, being the spiritual leader of such a spiritual people, naturally does not fall subject to your accusations of vanity and pride. This is my *belief*, which is based on my personal judgment, after having interacted with enlightened members of said group of people, and having personally basked in the glory of the DL along with 8000 other Seattleites.

    I think the DL and the Panchen Lama are trying very hard to educate their own people. DL preaches compassion for your enemy — and you can tell that he believes in it himself. How else do you suppose a man could remain so happy and upbeat in the face of calamity? No, I don’t think the answer is Hollywood stardust rubbed off of Richard Gere.

    And regarding the scope of his outrageous requests to China, well, I don’t know about you but I start from rock bottom prices when I bargain with a Mexican alpaca seller. What’s your guess on China’s counter offer? How about “why don’t you come back here and we’ll make you a Delegate of the People, if we don’t imprison and torture you for 9 years first”?

  14. Jean: a stool is fine, but I am sorry for you if you have invested in that bag of popcorn, too, for you’ll be disappointed. I am now in the Bay Area sampling quite reasonable wines and very lousy Chinese cuisine (per my hosts’ persistent hospitality), such as 麻辣诱惑(where is the “诱惑”?), while not struggling with my two-year-old and preemptive caring for the 2nd child 6 months old by “lunar calendar” (meaning “still in the womb”). In short, got better things to do than a discourse along the line of “a Mexican alpaca seller”.

    Wait until I make it back to work next week and boredom again got the better of me.

  15. OK, I am back, and I am already suitably bored.

    Meow: I read your most recent post above, and frankly, I am disappointed by its deplorable dearth of information content, but also by my own initial earnestness in engaging in a hopeless discourse beyond intellect and reason.
    Since you have never addressed any of the points I brought up earlier, I shall try to be more pointed in my response this time. Example:

    “I say in all seriousness that there are few people in the world who can rival the spirituality of the Tibetans.”
    – Define “spirituality”. Or do you prefer to stay wishy-washy, as your “spiritual comrades” are wont to do?
    – Why is “spirituality” a good thing? Ever a fan of the Middle Ages? Or, are you going to be surprised if I tell you there is a strong vein of “spirituality” (if “spiritual” is defined as “of or relating to supernatural beings or phenomena, or sacred matters as opposed to temporal”) in National Socialism?
    – How do you measure and compare “spirituality”? With a 50s-retro-design gauge from Crate&Barrel, retailing at $39.95?

    Reading your email, M., I see no arguments, but simply unreasoned and unsubstantiated statements. As an illustration, try this for force of logic: “DL, being the spiritual leader of such a spiritual people, naturally does not fall subject to your accusations of vanity and pride.”…”and you can tell that he believes in it himself”…Oh I am so convinced……hello? Don’t want to sound like a bad sport, amica, but hiw can this conversation NOT be a total waste of time?

    I am convinced you are a true believer alright, but not in the coherent and thoughtful category as some of the earlier Chinese Communists, but in the frivolous, cosmetic fashion of BoBos, who got their money’s worth by “having personally basked in the glory of the DL along with 8000 other Seattleites”. The “upper-case” True Believers are of profound psychological interest to me, for their thoughts, even when we don’t agree, are often enlightening or even heartening. But with all due respect, I am not interested in lower-case “true believers” like Your Ladyship.

    So long.

    Jean的回复:
    To each his/her own! I’m so glad Mewo doesn’t have to suffer the deep cynicism that your soul has to toil with. Enjoy!

  16. Wow…… fight on, sisters!

    Two comments:
    1. When it comes to politicians, one takes a “presumed guilty until proven innocent” approach. Why? Because they have too much resources, too much power, and too poor a track record.
    I don’t know about Meow, but I think Jean’s intelligence would warrant perhaps a reluctant agreement with this position in her more sober moments.
    2. I’ll choose open-eyed cynicism over blind, orgasmic, feel-good adoration, any day. If “toiling” is involved, so be it. I don’t choose what I believe based on how light and easygoing that belief will make me. Do you?

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