The FBI raided a man's home on the basis of Facebook posts that the agency itself admitted couldn't be characterized as threats to any person or organization. They nevertheless held him without bail for five months while they attempted to find evidence to justify a charge of abetting terrorism or the like. They couldn't come up with anything. In the end they charged him with unlawful gun possession, but that charge was specious enough that it thrown out by a judge before even going to trial. In the meantime the man lost his job and his home.
This wasn't the normal functioning of law enforcement. This was abuse of law enforcement to punish politically disfavored speech (which speech, I repeat, the law-enforcement agency in question conceded was non-threatening).
The decision to deny bail was based on logic that they provided in open court. I'll let you look at their logic and decide for yourself whether it makes sense.
This is at least a reasonable system even if it needs some adjustments to get closer to justice.
I referenced the following two URLs:
I'm not sure why that is a justification. The Chinese security services clearly got the authority to act as they did to. It doesn't make it right.
It's a justification because they had to provide evidence to a judge who had to assess it given our laws. What better system should I expect? If it's not a system problem and so there's a particular failing in this case, please point it out.
How was the authority given to the Chinese security services? This is a very important detail, because you can setup systems with checks and balances and laws or you can give carte blanche.
It is a travesty, I'll agree. But words have meanings, and "abducted" is not what that was.
(Yes, you can pick a nit about whether that's really a "crime", and you can argue about whether it should be. It's still illegal, under the existing law, for those people to be here.)
This is the model for the next world-wide government after China wipes the USA off the map as planned. Most people can’t deal with this information, despite the fact that it is staring them right in the face. “Made in China” is a curse that people have accepted though, so as usual they get exactly what they deserve.
The "China of Today" one could say was created by Western Powers would be Taiwan, but even Taiwan had it's foundings on anti-Western sentiments (Chiang Kai-Shek despised Western democracy).
You can also read an article about it on Yales website titled “Yale spurs Maos emergence“.
I wish I were wrong about the direction things are heading in, but I'm not.
Travel restrictions or ineligibiliy for universities. Public shaming via automated voice messages or displays, denouncing you as dishonest. You don't think that's worse?
Also note that in Germany, the right to be informed about any data companies may have on you has been law for a while. The EU-wide General Data Protection Regulation becomes enforceable next week.
Freedom of movement and GDPR are good things. The EU is not (yet) China. But the social credit score is not the bogeyman people make it out to be - or, to the extent that it is, it's already here.
In the West, are those things engineered by the government on a mass scale to coerce political support for the regime and silence dissent?
I've never understood this American notion that just because a private company is doing something that makes it fine. If you can't get a loan and can't find out why, what difference does it make whether it was the government or a private entity that blocked you?
> Also, you avoid even having a credit score if you just pay cash for everything.
Sure, but at that point you're unable to participate in much of society, just like someone without a social credit score.
A lot, actually. It might help you to understand if you realize it's not really about the loan. It's about the political control that such opaque denials can be used to implement. A private company, especially a large public one, has a lot fewer incentives for exerting political control over its customers than an authoritarian government over its people. The private company actually has a lot of incentives for not doing so, since that kind of thing can alienate customers.
You're reaching too far for an equivalence. Yes they have "deeper," more esoteric interests, but having them limited to those rather than supporting a party-regime is a far better situation.
Private company credit scores are better than government social credit scores, even though they're not totally neutral in idealistic way. The difference is big enough for them to be entirely different animals.
You seem to be confused about the salient differences between the social credit system and Western credit scores. Focusing on the fact that you can be "denied...for no clear reason or way to appeal" to draw an equivalence entirely misses the point.
What's novel and scary about the social credit system is that political actions like criticizing the government or associating with activists could hurt your score. It's not scoped to financial activity like western systems. If I have a low FICO score, I'm 100% certain that it's not because I didn't vote for Trump.
What gives you that certainty?
I worked on this stuff in the finance industry a few years back. Even at that stage we were taking any available data and throwing it into opaque machine learning models, and using those to make lending decisions. There was no nefarious intent, but it's not like we had (or cared to have) any way to exclude political affiliation effects either.
There is a trend in resume writing right now to include “rich people hobbies” such as skiing, horseback riding, mountain climbing, etc. because they signal affluence and make you more likely to be hired.
Same shit as a social credit system, just a bit more hidden.
But honestly, do you think ours and their systems are equivalently indoctrinational?
Correction: it depended on who you are.
Those schools have been closed and have been repudiated at the highest levels of the Canadian government:
> On June 11, 2008, Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a formal apology, on behalf of the sitting Cabinet, in front of an audience of Indigenous delegates, and in an address that was broadcast nationally on the CBC, for the past governments' policies of assimilation. The Prime Minister apologized not only for the known excesses of the residential school system, but for the creation of the system itself. Harper delivered the speech in the House of Commons; the procedural device of a Committee of the Whole was used, so that Indigenous leaders, who were not Members of Parliament, could be allowed to respond to the apology on the floor of the House.
The echoes of these abuses continue long after the abuse itself ends.
Lots of similarities, actually. Both systems were designed to destroy a culture seen as backwards by the powers that be.
Yeah, except one occurred in the past and is now condemned; the other is a present, newly-created reality.
Do you think the school in 1996 was doing the same things as the schools in, say, 1896? Don't you think it's more reasonable to see the 1996 closure as the end (or near the end) of a longer, continuous process, not a binary state change?
Unsurprisingly, things are more complicated: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_Indian_residential_sc...
Thankfully, enlightened western nations like Canada have not been so cruel since the distant, distant year of 1996 .
My 8 year old son who is in the third grade has spent all year 'studying' for the SOL (Standards of Learning) test. All day everyday for the last year nothing but SOL 'prep'. He sits on a Chromebook all day. All of his work is done on a Chromebook, his teacher doesn't even have to grade the assignments it's automatically done by the application. The teacher doesn't even come up with the lesson plan, it's all pushed by the school system. No deviation.
The only reason he has to 'attend' school is because his mother and I work full time. I've considered working remote and just homeschooling my son but I worry about him missing out on the social aspect of school. but that's a double edge sword also.
One last kicker. I never signed anything that would allow my son to use a chromebook or consent to google data mining my son who is under the age of 13. But alas I am sure google has a whole profile built around him and his classmates...
So yes, teachers are underpaid and overworked, and I believe that’s partially causing our system to be so mediocre - it’s hard to hire talented teachers who have time and energy to do a good job when the job is so exhausting and financially unrewarding.
This is the uncharitable, slightly tongue in cheek interpretation of events.
At the very least freedom should come with "being well informed", however we are informed by commercials nowadays. Is this freedom?
Torture & forced reeducation camps are wrong regardless of some other wrongness somewhere else.
They're called the "50 Cent Army" or "50 Cent Party."
The details of the contemporary Chinese censorship regime are actually pretty interesting. It's not as simple as just banning content and keywords they don't like, even with the benefit of the great firewall.
The US has a real negative mark there and deserves the flack that it gets for it.
However, while China seems to be racing toward some terrifying authoritarian nightmare with its Xi dictatorship and bringing back camps, the US incarceration rate has been declining for a decade. It has been rolled back to 1995-1996 levels and is on an aggressive downward slope.
Most likely with the continued legalization / de-criminalization of marijuana, the US will see its incarceration rate continue to plunge for the next 10-20 years. The prison explosion began around 1978-1979. In another ten years we should have the incarceration rate back down to late 1980s levels. That would still be 2x higher than the late 1970s levels, and a lot more work would still need to be done. For reference, peak incarceration was around 2007, and was about 5x what the rate was in the late 1970s (per capita).
Both political parties have widespread agreement that the failed US policies of mass-incarceration have to be reversed / ended.
You really need specify exactly what you're referring to, otherwise there can be no discussion and your comment is content-less snark.
I'm guessing that you're referring to the high numbers of African Americans imprisoned in the US. However, the situations are clearly not comparable. These camps appear to be the result of high-level Chinese government policy that explicitly targets this ethic group. There are no contemporary parallels in the US. If you think there are, do you think Obama was in on it? The US situation is unfortunate, but it's more the result of poverty and lower-level racism, not a policy to imprison blacks.
It's exceedingly frustrating that whenever there's an article about Chinese human rights abuses, there are dozens of comments that seem to just want to deflect attention from them. We never actually end up talking about China, just the US.
Is this just your conclusion, or the conclusion of anyone who has studied mass incarceration in the United States?
i find it fascinating how to some folks, pointing at obama's ethnic background is apparently some kind of knockdown argument.
It's pretty close to a knockdown argument against someone whose position is US government policy is to imprison black people on account of their ethnicity.
The great-grandparent comment may have been suggesting that. However, she was too vague to be sure.
That being said, it's just plain easy to find actual incidences where US policy was explicitly racist in it's intent and effect.
> "You understand what I'm saying? We knew we couldn't make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin. And then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities," Ehrlichman said. "We could arrest their leaders. raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did."
it's not, not even slightly, as far as i can tell. what makes you feel this is the case?
If there was a high level policy to explicitly imprison African Americans (rather than one that disproportionately imprisons blacks because of complicated circumstances), it's hard to believe a black president would support it or allow it to continue.
Can you provide a source for this wild claim?
The commenter I responded to was so vague, that they could have been making that claim. After all, they were likely drawing parallels between the situation in the OP and the US.
But who knows what they really thought; they never clarified. I called that out at the time and in every comment since.
Lastly, you are wildly off the mark regarding racialized drug policies in the US. Just two references:
In an article about Chinese human rights abuses? At the most charitable, needing to make everything about the US is a form of political narcissism.
If you want to talk about US problems, post an on-topic article and talk about them there.
Calling this “political narcissism” is thinly veiled political solipsism. I’m amazed to read that here—do you just put your thoughts about the country in which you live in a little box, separate from everything else? It’s not like you can’t ignore these threads if you’d like; most of us can walk and chew gum at the same time.
It sounds to me like you have some deep-seated insecurities that I really don’t think you should have. I think you should address these before you go around whining about other people’s attempt to discuss things.
I have a deep-seated frustration that threads on this and similar topics become trainwreck full of derails and distraction. I'd be surprised if the majority of comments in this thread even discussed China or the situation there, rather than use it as a jumping off point derail to a US topic. As far as I can tell, I'm the only person to have used the term Xinjiang in this entire thread. This is in a post about Xinjiang.
Just to emphasize: this thread is such a trainwreck that it dropped like a rock off the front page. That does no one any good.
> It’s almost like this is one reason to read world news.
A better reason to read world news is to understand and discuss the world, not to compulsively engage in domestic topics.
How would we cope with a similar situation? And as a deeper and deeper divide is drawn within our nation - in no small part based on political extremism, I can't help but think that our current system is ultimately headed towards a climax that's not going to have a happy ending. And we live in a nation that ought be a million times easier to manage according to most measurable factors.
I've heard China described as one of the last classical empires. All the others, such as the British Empire, Ottoman Empire, Soviet Empire have dissolved.
So "our" solution would be independence for the imperial possessions.
Germany? No. France? No. Japan? No. South Korea? No. South Vietnam? No. The Philippines? No. Canada? No. Iraq? No. Afghanistan? No. Mexico? No. Panama? No. Grenada? No.
China just violently annexed territory 4x the size of France from its neighbors. Nobody did a thing about it (and nobody is going to do a thing about it), the world just stood aside and watched. The UN barely wagged its finger at them.
> "[Whataboutism] functions as a diversionary tactic to distract the opponent from their original criticism. Thus, the technique is used to avoid directly refuting or disproving the opponent's initial argument."
for example, ad hominem is not a "logical fallacy" unless it is used in some kind of logical construct (such as a syllogism). it's not necessarily a "logical fallacy" to just simply insult someone in some subjective or qualitative way.
It's strange (well, not really) how easily we see sympathy or shrugging when the English speaking West interns without trial, or incarcerates Muslim radicals under torture, or mass incarcerates its former slave population etc., then dabs a handkerchief for Muslim radicals in China. It reminds me of the tears shed in Washington DC for the Muslim terrorists blowing up Chechnya in 1999, and 2000. That kind of slowed down in 2001.
I suppose this is "whataboutism", which is amazement at Western professionals who pontificate about far-off lands of competitors, when the westerners have done or are doing worse.
But the Chinese are the real bad guys. It's why the British had to burn his winter palace at the end of the Opium wars.
That's where your whataboutism really exposes your twisted thinking.