The Sinocism China Newsletter 10.31.13

I had originally planned to announce tomorrow that the newsletter will switch from a daily to a weekly publication in late November.

On the advice of some supportive readers I have decided to give everyone one last chance to provide financial support to keep Sinocism going. If between today and Monday enough of you sign up for one of the recurring plans here the daily newsletter will continue.

If not enough subscribe, the daily newsletter will go away in late November, those of you who signed up in this round will not be charged, existing contributors on a recurring plan will not be charged after today, and those of you who have contributed a lump sum will have the option of a pro-rated refund starting at the end of November. I will then switch to a weekly newsletter (which some of you who feel overloaded may even prefer…)

I do not want to run a subscription-only service, nor do I want to manage two or more versions of the newsletter. I understand the free rider issue, and the eccentricity of this model. Most of you who would even consider paying have to wonder why you should pay when others are not. That is a social issue I can not fix. What matters to me is whether or not you as an individual value this service enough to keep it going. There are now 13,500 of you getting the daily email, so I hope enough of you do.

If you do, sign up here, and thank you.

There is a one-time payment option through Paypal, but I strongly prefer recurring payments.

I hope we can keep it going, but if the money is not there I will refocus my energies on projects with more financial viability.

Today’s Links:

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT

China says five detained in connection with Tiananmen attack | Reuters China said on Wednesday it had caught five suspected Islamist militants after a vehicle burst into flames on Beijing’s Tiananmen Square in what police called a terrorist attack. Authorities also moved to tighten security in the restive far western, energy-rich region of Xinjiang, where the suspects are from.

Related 央视:该案嫌犯的幕后是“三股势力”_资讯频道_凤凰网 “10·28”暴力恐怖袭击案件,再—次暴露了犯罪分子的丑恶嘴脸和凶残本质。在世界任何地方伤害无辜,都注定为人类良知所不容,为所有宗教的教义所不容,为法律所不容。 制造这次案件的是极少数犯罪分子,而在他们的幕后,是暴力恐怖势力、民族分裂势力和宗教极端势力。(注:“三股势力”,即暴力恐怖势力、民族分裂势力和宗教极端势力。)对此,必将引起全社会的愤慨和强烈谴责。//The CCTV Report

Related: Uighur leader questions China’s account of Tiananmen attack | Reuters Asked whether she believed Uighurs were responsible, Kadeer said: “Maybe and maybe not. It is difficult to tell at the moment, given the strict control of information by the Chinese government on this tragic incident.” “If the Uighurs did it, I believe they did it out of desperation because there is no channel for the Uighur people to seek redress for any kind of injustice they had suffered under Chinese rule,” she added. // that still does not justify an attack that kills innocent people and injures dozens, including a five year old child. These three just made life, already very difficult, much more difficult for Uighurs in China.

Related: Uighurs facing new police scrutiny in Beijing – AP Since the attack, police “come to search us every day. We don’t know why. Our IDs are checked every day, and we don’t know what is happening,” said Ali Rozi, 28, a Uighur (pronounced WEE-gur) trader at the sprawling Panijayuan market. “We have trouble every day, but we haven’t done anything,” said Rozi, who is from Kashgar, the capital of Xinjiang province where most Uighurs live. Militants from the Muslim Uighur community have been fighting a low-intensity insurgency against Chinese rule in Xinjiang for years. Recent clashes, including an attack on a police station, have left at least 56 people dead this year. The government typically calls the incidents terrorist attacks.

Xi urges better housing security – Xinhua Chinese President Xi Jinping has stressed the need to accelerate the country’s housing security and supply to guarantee people’s basic residential needs. Presiding over a group study session of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee on Tuesday, Xi said that pushing the construction of the housing supply system is a solid project that benefits all people. “Solving the housing issue is a long-term task,” the president said. “China still faces problems such as insufficient affordable housing and imbalances in housing resources distribution.” // high risk that corruption impedes this goal, but if can be achieved will go a long way towards dealing with one of the key people’s livelihood and social stability issues…hence even more focus from the top, though getting it through the various levels of government effectively is a huge challenge, like so much else here

Related: 习近平:把住房保障和供应体系建设办成一项德政工程-高层动态-新华网 Xinhua report on Xi’s remarks and the meeting // 原标题:习近平在中共中央政治局第十次集体学习时强调 加快推进住房保障和供应体系建设 不断实现全体人民住有所居的目标… 新华网北京10月30日电  中共中央政治局10月29日下午就加快推进住房保障体系和供应体系建设进行第十次集体学习。中共中央总书记习近平在主持学习时强调,加快推进住房保障和供应体系建设,是满足群众基本住房需求、实现全体人民住有所居目标的重要任务,是促进社会公平正义、保证人民群众共享改革发展成果的必然要求。各级党委和政府要加强组织领导,落实各项目标任务和政策措施,努力把住房保障和供应体系建设办成一项经得起实践、人民、历史检验的德政工程…清华大学土木水利学院刘洪玉教授、住房和城乡建设部政策研究中心秦虹研究员就这个问题进行讲解,并谈了他们的意见和建议。

Related: 中央政治局第十次集体学习释放哪些住房政策新信息?-时政频道-新华网 Xinhua interviews experts to elaborate on the implications of the Politburo study session on housing // 新华网北京10月30日电(记者杜宇、陈炜伟、高敬)中央政治局29日下午就加快推进住房保障体系和供应体系建设进行第十次集体学习,习近平总书记主持学习并讲话。这次集体学习释放哪些住房政策新信息?带着这个问题,新华社记者30日连线部分专家和政府官员,对此进行解读。

Exposed: Australia’s Asia spy network–Sydney Morning Herald Fairfax Media has been told that signals intelligence collection takes place from embassies in Jakarta, Bangkok, Hanoi, Beijing and Dili, and High Commissions in Kuala Lumpur and Port Moresby, as well as other diplomatic posts. // can’t imagine this is a surprise to Beijing, though making it public is unhelpful to everyone

Related: Chinese cities victim of US spying scheme – Chinadaily.com.cn According to German magazine Der Spiegel, China has become another victimized country of Washington’s monitoring sweep. US intelligence has been operating a global network of 80 special collection services, including “listening posts” in cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Hong Kong and Taipei, Der Spiegel said. Calling cybersecurity “a matter of sovereignty”, spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Beijing will take the necessary measures to safeguard its information security.

Related: The Snowden Leaks and the Public by Alan Rusbridger | The New York Review of Books If, say, the Chinese had behaved like this toward the Internet and toward social platforms used around the world, there would be barely contained fury in the West. Little wonder that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was not impressed by President Obama’s repeated assurances that “there is no spying on Americans.” That was, he pointed out, of little comfort to American entrepreneurs trying to build global businesses. //one China point in a long and important essay by The Guardian’s Editor. The era of American Internet Exceptionalism may be coming rapidly to an end, with Snowden’s exposures an accelerant to a process that was already underway with the rise of China’s Internet, its 600m+ netizens and a world increasingly receptive to its approach to online information management

Shanghai Can Tolerate Slower Growth, Party Boss Says – Caixin Shanghai can tolerate some slowing of growth as it seeks to transform its economy, says Han Zheng, the city’s Communist Party boss. Han, a member of the 25-member Politburo, made the remarks in an exclusive interview on October 25. The city could “slow down the growth a bit” as it switches its focus, he said. “Right now our main focus is not at all GDP growth but to promote reform and restructuring,” Han said. “Innovation and transformation are the two major tasks at hand.”

Closer Look: Why Patients in China Kill Their Doctors – Caixin Misunderstandings about modern medicine and a lack of health care resources combine to form the biggest malady plaguing the medical field

China’s Clean-Air Drive Likely to Take a Long Time – NYTimes.com The Chinese government is working on the problem and recently announced new limits on pollutants along with a promise of increased monitoring. Public awareness has spiked, a necessary step toward ending the crisis. But the overriding message from other nations is a discouraging one: Serious change can take decades, especially when pollution is a byproduct of economic growth.

Top Chinese Banks Post Biggest Bad-Loan Surge Since 2010 – Bloomberg Nonperforming loans at Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd. (601398), China Construction Bank Corp. (939), Agricultural Bank (1288) of China Ltd. and Bank of China Ltd. (3988) rose 3.5 percent in the three months to Sept. 30 from June to a combined 329.4 billion yuan ($54 billion), according to data compiled by Bloomberg News based on third-quarter results. Profit rose to 209 billion yuan…The nation’s debt-to-GDP ratio, excluding central government and financial debt, widened to 207 percent at the end of the third quarter from 190 percent a year earlier as credit growth continued to outpace productivity gains, Mike Werner, a Hong Kong-based analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein, said this month.

Related: 银行不良资产转让多途并进 AMC“地盘”被侵蚀_财经频道_一财网 investor interest in bad loans increasing// 多位银行业人士告诉《第一财经日报》记者,不良资产转让需求日渐增加,加上银行希望最大程度收回资产,开始摸索更多的处置途径,产权交易平台、信托、PE、第三方机构等积极介入,四大资产管理公司(AMC)的传统势力范围受到“侵蚀”。 与此同时,银行转让的不良资产,由于具有一定增值空间,也受到市场青睐。本报记者获悉,工行深圳分行转让的6.7亿元不良资产包,挂牌不久便有投资者迅速买走,而农行上述两次推介会,更是吸引了逾百名投资者参加。

Closer Look: How Agreements Like the TPP Press China to Reform – Caixin Over the years, China’s attitude toward the TPP has changed from strong criticism to cautious support. In May, the Ministry of Commerce said China will conduct a serious study and analyze the pros and cons of joining the TPP. For China, the domestic and international situations have changed. Wang Yong, director of the Center for International Political Economy at Peking University, said the most crucial factors that have changed China’s attitude are its slowing economy and the fact that it requires external forces to propel domestic reforms.

 

THIRD PLENUM

周其仁谈企业家如何看三中全会:要把文件变成生意经-财经网 Zhou Qiren discusses how CEOs should read the Third Plenum report to advance their business prospects // 新浪财经讯 10月30日消息,在今日召开的君联资本CEO CLUB第十三次活动上,北京大学中国经济研究中心教授、北京大学国家发展研究院院长周其仁详解了改革的趋势和阻力,他表示,三中全会是中国政治力量,社会力量、文化力量的权衡,企业家要研究现有决策力量的偏好和构成,学会对三中全会文件的解读,把文件变成真正的生意经。周其仁将中国的改革概括成四个圆圈,第一个圆圈是“大家希望改革什么”,第二个圆圈是“期望能改什么”,第三个圆圈是“决定做什么”,第四个圆圈是“实际干了什么”。

党校专家:三中全会会重点研究并部署政治体制改革-财经网 中共十八届三中全会将于11月9日至12日召开,研究“全面深化改革”问题并作出总体部署,统筹推进经济、政治、文化、社会、生态文明建设等领域的改革,改革的范围之广、力度之大,都将是空前的。中央党校相关专家表示,政治体制改革肯定会被重点研究讨论并做出相应规划部署。

三中全会纲领性文件如何出台?-时政频道-新华网 Beijing Youth Daily looks at how Plenum reports are drafted // 北京青年报记者梳理了自1993年以来召开的4次三中全会,发现历次纲领性文件的起草始终在中央政治局常委会直接领导下进行,整个定稿过程需要召开5次中央政治局常委会议、2到3次中央政治局会议,起草一般历时半年。

中共十八届三中全会-财经网 Caijing’s special section for the Third Plenum

三中全会总体方案已初定 吴敬琏痛批没有思想市场-财经网 Wu Jinglian is already criticizing the Third Plenum report…says China lacks a marketplace of ideas // 吴敬琏认为,中国经济的进一步发展和市场制度的完善,最大的阻力和障碍在于“从经济到教育,从法律到政治,中国社会的每个角落都缺乏充满活力的思想市场”。

三中全会侧重全局 注重整体性系统性配套性改革_网易新闻中心 一名官方研究机构的智囊人士昨日在接受《第一财经(微博)日报》采访时称,十八届三中全会总体属于一次高规格的全局性会议,将在各个方面以顶层设计的角度做出规划,预计在社会关心的细节上不会有太大突破。//do not expect lots of details in the Third Plenum report, China Business News quotes one official think-tanker. yes, people who have paid attention to Chinese politics for years assume this, but do the markets? 

 

BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE

Forney & Gillis: It’s Time for Chinese Firms to Play Offense Against the Shorts – WSJ.com To assuage investor skepticism, the financial statements of cash-rich Chinese companies should disclose all bank accounts together with the legal entity that owns them. Such disclosure is not required but would help assure investors that auditors have verified the balances. NQ Mobile has begun to make such disclosures in response to the Muddy Waters report. A recent survey of investors in U.S. listed Chinese stocks conducted by Professor Gillis found that 89% of the respondents wanted to know about the procedures that the auditor followed to verify cash balances. Auditors and companies have never disclosed that kind of information. But investors want it, so Chinese executives should give it to them.

U.S. Treasury Says Yuan Hasn’t Strengthened as Needed – Bloomberg The yuan “is appreciating, but not as fast or by as much as needed,” the department said in its semi-annual currency report to Congress released in Washington today. “The evidence that China has resumed large-scale purchases of foreign exchange this year, despite having accumulated reserves that are more than sufficient by any measure, is suggestive of actions that are impeding market determination and a currency that is significantly undervalued,” the Treasury said.

China Money Rates Jump as Cash Squeeze Spurs Record Bond Yield – Bloomberg The latest rise in interbank rates is likely to be partly because of fiscal deposits parked with the central bank, which tend to increase most in October owing to corporate sector tax payments, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said in a report today. Money-market rates will retreat from this week’s highs once the corporate tax payments are completed, even if the central bank refrains from acting to ease the cash squeeze, economist Yu Song wrote in the report.

解密清华经管学院”智囊团”:朱镕基任名誉主席(全文)_网易新闻中心 The most exclusive club in China for foreigners? A look at the Tsinghua management school  advisory council, of which Zhu Rongji is honorary chairman //

Heard on the Street: Chinese Banks’ Divided Capital – WSJ.com The divide in China’s banking system between the biggest and the rest is widening. Shareholders risk falling between the cracks. The country’s largest state-owned banks appear reasonably well-capitalized. But balance sheets are looking precarious at the more nimble, midsize lenders.

China’s talk of reform leaves investors cool toward state giants | Reuters Large bond supplies from SOEs and prospects of the U.S. Federal Reserve withdrawing its multi-year campaign of quantitative easing are deterring buyers of Chinese corporate debt. Another reason why some are averse to investing in SOEs can be their sensitivity to policy shifts in Beijing. “Even if you like a company, a change in government policy can completely upend your positions,” said a fund manager at a U.S. fund in Hong Kong that manages more than $5 billion in Asian debt. “You are better off getting value from other investment grade names in Asia.”

自贸区挂牌满月 临港板块楼市成交量达去年同期14倍_财经频道_一财网 volume of real estate transactions for properties near the new Shanghai FTZ up 14X over same period last year..someone has already made $$ on the FTZ// 上海自由贸易实验区挂牌已满一月,在自贸区利好和楼市传统旺季的双重影响下,自贸区相关板块的楼市成交异常火爆。

国研中心:三四线城市地产泡沫正在破裂_财经频道_一财网 State Council DRC report says property bubbles in third and fourth tier cities are in middle of bursting // 根据国研中心的调研报告,国内房地产市场风险仍在进一步积累,区域性分化趋势越来越明显,三四线城市出现泡沫破裂现象。

A Lonely Passion: China’s Followers of Friedrich A. Hayek – NYTimes.com Hayek believed that economic planning by the state leads to a loss of individual liberty, and that a private economy run by people whose rights are protected and enlarged by good laws delivers the best life. ‘‘There is some distance between Hayek and the current realities’’ in China, Gao Quanxi, a prominent Chinese Hayekian and law professor at Beihang University in Beijing, said in an interview this week. //Isn’t Zhang Weiying a big Hayek proponent?

CVC-South Beauty talks show shift to majority stake sales in China | Reuters London-based CVC is in advanced talks to buy a majority holding in South Beauty Investment Co Ltd for $300 million, sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters. South Beauty, which operates high-end restaurants that cater to China’s business and political elite, had previously hired banks for a Hong Kong IPO worth as much as $200 million that had been planned for this year. // good luck to CVC…CDH is smart money, must be glad to get out of this deal

Hong Kong IPO Today for China First Capital Client Hydoo | China Private Equity Welcome good news today from Hong Kong’s capital markets. The Chinese commercial real estate developer Hydoo (Chinese name 毅德) successfully IPOs on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, raising over USD$200mn in new capital. With IPO channels for Chinese companies mainly blockaded, it’s especially welcome to see a Chinese private sector company raising so much from the stock market…I’m happy for Hony and the other investors, but happier still for Hydoo founders, particularly its chairman, Wang Zaixing, known to friends and family as “Laowu”, literally “Venerable Fifth”…For me, Laowu personifies in many ways the large economic changes China has undergone in the last 30 years. He started life as a long-distance truck driver and from that humble start saw and grasped an opportunity to build wholesale trading centers for the emerging army of small businesspeople in China.

 

POLITICS AND LAW

Chinese reporter arrested over fabrications – Xinhua A Chinese reporter was officially arrested on Wednesday for alleged damage to commercial reputation, days after he confessed to fabricating a series of reports targeting a listed company. The Yuelu District People’s Procuratorate in Changsha, capital of central China’s Hunan Province, on Wednesday approved the arrest of Chen Yongzhou, of daily newspaper the New Express, based in Guangzhou of neighboring Guangdong Province.

守护互联网生态的晴空(新论)–祝华新 《 人民日报 》( 2013年10月31日 05 版)People’s Daily Online Public Opinion Monitoring Center head Zhu Huaxin says progress has been made in cleaning up the Internet // 事实上,经过网络的自我净化、治理者的善管善用后,今天中国的网络舆论生态,已经发生不小变化。从舆论板块看,体制内媒体微博和政务微博异军突起,成为新一类网络“大V”,扭转了前几年政府工作在网上被“围观”的被动局面. 从网络情绪看,戾气在下降,正气在张扬。以9月份数据为例,天涯社区BBS的社会民生类话题中,负面帖文总数下降63%,而天涯论坛帖文信息正面率小幅上升6%. 从发帖内容看,多了信息的及时传递,少了不明真相的评点。一个数据是:从去年的北京暴雨到今年的余姚大水,灾难现场信息的比重从10%上升到56%,而网友隔岸观火式的观点评论和转载从60%下降到15%…舆情数据揭示:互联网可管可控。进一步掌握好互联网这个舆论主战场上的主动权,就能让互联网弥漫的雾霾渐散,清朗的天空展现.–(作者为人民网舆情监测室秘书长)

Chinese Websites to “Spread Positive Energy”–CRI A senior Chinese Internet official on Wednesday called on major websites to become a force to “spread positive energy” and play a leading role in guiding public opinion. Minister of the State Internet Information Office Lu Wei said in an online media forum that mainstream news portals and big commercial websites should play an exemplary role in strengthening management, developing healthy trends, pooling positive energy and contributing to the Chinese dream. The official said China has a general goal of building “clear and bright” cyberspace.

网络空间如何清朗起来 鲁炜提出“六个目标”-新华网 Lu Wei also outlined 6 goals at the 13th China Internet Media Forum // 一是为民的网络空间,就是通过互联网听民意、集民智、惠民生、暖民心,让互联网真正成为党委政府了解群众、贴近群众、服务群众的新途径;二是文明的网络空间,就是在网上倡导文明风尚,弘扬社会主义先进文化,彰显真善美,鞭挞假恶丑,将网络空间建设成为崇德向善、文明有礼、温暖人心的精神家园;三是诚信的网络空间,就是把诚信上网作为行为准则,强化“以守信为荣、以失信为耻”的价值导向,建立并完善网络空间的诚信体系,共同铸就诚信的网络空间;四是法治的网络空间,就是加快完善网络法律法规,坚决打击网络犯罪,加强网站自律和网民自律,营造风清气正的网络环境,让网络管理、网络运用、网络服务始终在法治轨道上健康运行;五是安全的网络空间,就是把安全作为网络空间的“生命线”,大力维护数据安全、技术安全、应用安全、渠道安全,完善安全防控体系,营造安全、稳定、可靠、有序的网络环境;六是创新的网络空间,就是坚持以理念创新为先导,以技术创新为支撑,以服务创新为重点,以传播创新为关键,以管理创新为保障,着力建设充满活力、富于创新的网络空间。

互联网信息办主任:主流网站要做到“八个带头”_网易新闻中心 State Council Internet Information Office head Lu Wei lists 8 areas in which mainstream Internet sites need to “take the lead”…the “8 take the leads”// 一是带头把方向,就是要牢牢把握正确的政治方向。 二是带头抓管理,就是要始终坚持管得住是硬道理。 三是带头扬正气,就是要坚持传播正能量是总要求。 四是带头树新风,就是要大兴网络文明之风。 五是带头守法纪,就是要坚守法律法规底线。六是带头探规律,就是要提升网络传播的有效性。七是带头谋发展,就是要增强网络媒体核心竞争力。八是带头建队伍,就是要建设一支忠于党和人民的强大队伍。

SPC spokesperson provides background to online defamation Judicial Interpretation | China Copyright and Media After the “Interpretation” was published, there was a sort of voice that believed that the publication of the “Interpretation” was intended to suppress the space for online free speech, and was even intended to attack or retaliate against critics or people raising suggestions, this sort of understanding is incorrect. For example, in the “Criminal Law Revision Draft (8)”, it is provided that drink-driving must be “criminalized”, the objective for this was not to limit everyone driving cars onto the roads, but was intended to limit specific individuals to drive cars onto the road in a dangerous manner, thus safeguarding traffic order and safety, and thereby protecting the majority of the people to drive cars onto the roads in an even safer manner. As a similar rationale, the “Interpretation” persists in the principle of statutory punishment and strict criminal standards, and will not deal with those who disseminate false information online without knowing the truth, and with acts of expressing extreme or even inaccurate critical opinions on the internet, in a criminal manner. Therefore, the publication of the “Interpretation” cannot be intended to “control” online discourse, but is intended to protect the broad citizens’ right to expression and to realize free speech in the true sense of the term.

中纪委面向全国征集廉政漫画 要鞭挞腐恶丑-时政频道-新华网 CDIC is asking the public to submit cartoons promoting clean governace, castigating corruption // 为推动廉政文化产品的创作,推广河北邱县运用廉政漫画推进廉政文化建设的做法,中央纪委宣传教育室、中国美术家协会、河北省纪委面向全国征集、推广一批以反腐倡廉为主题的优秀漫画作品,传播正能量、鞭挞腐恶丑,为党风廉政建设和反腐败斗争深入开展营造良好文化氛围。

媒体揭秘广西警察枪杀孕妇过程:共开4枪 一枪爆头_证券时报网 drunk local cop in Guangxi shoots, kills pregnant owner in her noodle shop over an argument, blowing up online…//10月28日晚10时许,广西平南县大鹏镇,平南县刑警大队刑警胡平酒后闯进当地一家螺蛳粉店,用随身携带的警枪向店主夫妇射击。螺蛳粉店老板蔡世勇被击中肩膀,而其怀有5个月身孕的妻子则身中两枪身亡,其中一枪爆头。平南县官方昨天证实了嫌疑人胡平的警察身份,但对其是否为该县公安局刑警大队副大队长不予置评。

How to Deal with the Chinese Police by Perry Link | The New York Review of Books paywalled, interesting review of In the shadow of the Rising Dragon // Weiwen does blanket coverage, but the blanket, most of the time, is soft. This is because citizens are well accustomed to monitoring themselves. They are aware of what kinds of public speech and behavior are to be avoided and they know that kicking the police blanket is not only dangerous but nearly always futile. People who do it, they feel, are odd, perhaps even stupid. // Amazon.com: In the Shadow of the Rising Dragon: Stories of Repression in the New China eBook: Xu Youyu, Hua Ze: Kindle Store

中组部:党政领导干部在企业兼职禁止领取报酬_网易新闻中心 据新华社电 日前,经中共中央批准,中央组织部发出通知,印发《关于进一步规范党政领导干部在企业兼职(任职)问题的意见》,提出凡按规定经批准在企业兼职的党政领导干部,不得在企业领取薪酬、奖金、津贴等报酬;兼职不得超过1个;连任不超过两届;兼职的任职年龄界限为70周岁。

China’s Ruling Party Pushes Austerity Campaign Legal to Curb Corruption-Caijing too bad Caijing does such bad translations // China’s top leadership body has decided to enshrine a repeated call to curb official extravagance, amid its ongoing anti-corruption campaign that has already dampened high-end consumption. Experts call the new rules, passed at a Politburo meeting yesterday, will bring the leadership’s resolution against official extravagance to a “legal level”, under which, officials’ misconducts of excessive spending can be punished accordingly.

Pressure on the press: Bad news either way | The EconomistThe fundamental problem goes beyond the state’s disregard for the constitutional right to a free press. Corruption is so ingrained in the world of Chinese journalism that reporters, who are typically low-paid, often accept gifts or cash, and think nothing of it. Pay-for-play reporting is common in the newspapers, where companies can buy their coverage by the column-inch, and pay to block it at another rate. Not all Chinese journalists accept compensation from their subjects, far from it. But the dirty work of a few does enough to stain the whole system.

Trial By TV: What Does a Reporter’s Arrest and Confession Tell Us About Chinese Media? | ChinaFile I choose to take Mr Lu at his word: the Party and its members see the threat to their dominance from microbloggers, commercial media, and the Internet. They intend to wrest back control. In the recent past, media control and public opinion “guidance” have proved to be remarkably successful governance tools, and there is no reason to believe that such policies will change. What’s relatively new is that there are so many alternative information channels that are difficult to control. Expect more confessions.

Relocated farmers face uphill battle|Society|chinadaily.com.cn Sixteen percent of Chinese households have had their land seized or homes demolished during China’s urbanization drive, yet only a few have received support in gaining employment or access to social security services, a survey indicates. In a report on urbanization and movement of labor released by the China Data Center of Tsinghua University, 16 percent of some 12,500 people polled nationwide said they had their land seized or homes demolished. Researchers extrapolated from that data that some 64.3 million households on the Chinese mainland have gone through the process.

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS

US and Britain using Hong Kong to infiltrate China, PLA-backed film says | South China Morning Post A political analyst said the criticism was a significant step by Beijing to tighten control over Hong Kong. Entitled Silent Contest, the 100-minute documentary explores China’s struggle against “American hegemony”. It says both the US and Britain have abnormally large consulates through which to infiltrate Hong Kong and nurture subversives.

军方宣传片称美颠覆中国 中情局十条戒令为谣言_中国_多维新闻网 Duowei on film by the PLA about how America is trying to subvert China//【多维新闻】连日来,一部由中国军方制作的名为《无声较量》的宣传片在网络中热传。宣传片认为美国正在通过各种手段对中国进行意识形态攻击,并试图颠覆中国政权。为证明该论点,宣传片列举了大量证据,其中一些有待进一步证实。其中一条中情局“十条戒令”的指证被网友发现系谣言,且早已被维基百科、百度百科证伪。 据悉,这部宣传片由中国军方最高学府国防大学于2013年6月制作完成,此外还联合总政治部保卫部、总参谋部三部、中国社会科学院、中国现代关系研究所联合推出。现任中共十八届中央委员会委员、国防大学政治委员、前国家主席李先念女婿刘亚洲为该宣传片两位总策划之一。宣传片认为,美国在五条战线上颠覆中国,包括政治渗透、文化渗透、思想渗透、组织渗透以及政治干涉和社会渗透。宣传片中甚至点名中国自由派学者贺卫方、茅于轼的名字,认为其是美国进行颠覆性活动的代言人。// the film  较量无声 (国防大学信息管理中心制作) free on Youku

Time For Congress To Rebalance On Asia-Pacific: Reps. Forbes & Hanabusa « Breaking Defense – Defense industry news, analysis and commentary Rep. Randy Forbes can play the partisan as well as any of his GOP colleagues on the House Armed Services Committee, but he also makes a habit of reaching across the aisle to work with Democrats on select issues. As chairman of the House Armed Services seapower and projection forces subcommittee, Forbes has pressed colleagues on both sides of the aisle for much of this year to hold more hearings on the Pentagon’s Pacific pivot (or whatever term we’re using this month). In this op-ed, Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, a respected Democrat from Hawaii with a strong parochial and strategic interest in the topic, joins Forbes to press the call for more congressional focus on one of the fundamental strategic issues with which our country is grappling.

New US warships will prompt PLA to play catch-up | South China Morning Post Their deployment would prompt China to intensify efforts to accelerate the technological prowess of its navy, and ensure it could adequately defend against the sophisticated weaponry, said Li Jie , an analyst with the PLA Navy. The United States is expected to officially unveil next month the first ship in its Ford-class aircraft carriers, the successor to the Nimitz-class design. According to US Congressional documents, the nuclear-powered vessels can handle a quarter more aircraft sorties, and generate more power to support ship systems, all while requiring several hundred fewer sailors for its crew.

U.S. Seeks Chinese Coordination on Oil Reserves – China Real Time Report – WSJ U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz said Wednesday during a trip to Beijing that China is willing to discuss a coordination agreement on the use of strategic petroleum reserves. Mr. Moniz said he expects both countries to hold “stronger” and more “active” discussions about that coordination in the coming year. China, which is relatively new to managing petroleum reserves, is building its capacity in three phases. The first phase, holding 100 million barrels, was completed in 2008. The second phase was finished last year, bringing the reserves to 270 million barrels, enough for about 50 days of cover. A third phase, to be finished by 2020, will boost them to 500 million barrels.

Instability in Libya? “No problem” says China in The China in Africa Podcast China doesn’t seem phased in the least over the growing political instability in Libya in the wake of the 2011 revolution there. While other foreign investors are either withdrawing or sitting on the sidelines, Chinese firms are lining up for oil deals and infrastructure projects. So what’s the appeal of Libya? Well, it appears to be part of a broader, very ambitious Chinese foreign policy agenda across the whole of North Africa.

 

HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN

Taiwan Economy Grew at Slowest Pace in a Year in Third Quarter – Bloomberg Gross domestic product rose 1.58 percent from a year earlier, the statistics bureau said in a preliminary report in Taipei today, after increasing 2.49 percent in the second quarter. The median estimate of 22 economists in a Bloomberg News survey for 2.57 percent growth.

Taiwan demands Apple change map that shows it as part of China – Telegraph Taiwan has angrily demand that Apple Inc. alter its new map application, which identifies the island nation as a province of China. Users of the iOS 7 and version 10.9 of OS X for the new iPhone and computers have discovered that any search for “Taiwan” automatically produced simplified Chinese characters that read “China Taiwan province.”

 

TECH AND MEDIA

Baidu’s Li Looks to Deals to Accelerate Push Into Mobile Search – Bloomberg The purchase is part of Baidu’s mobile push to lure some of the estimated 460 million people in China who access the Internet from smartphones and tablet computers. The Beijing-based company has announced or completed at least four deals this year valued at an aggregate $2.43 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg….Baidu is interested in expanding overseas and is boosting its market share in Thailand, Egypt and Brazil, Li said. The U.S. is still not a target for expansion, said Li

Messaging App In Talks for Free Data Usage – Caixin Yixin, which debuted on August 19, was developed by China Telecom and Internet company NetEase Inc. as a rival to Tencent Inc.’s hit voice and text messaging app WeChat. China Telecom, which owns 73 percent of Yixin, is counting on the app to strengthen its status in the face of challenges from over-the-top content services – mobile Internet services offered through telecom networks – which are eroding the traditional telecom business. A manager at Yixin Technology, the app’s operator, said the company has almost completed talks with the Big Three telecom operators regarding the free data. //Yixin has 30m users, WeChat has 400m or so in China

Alibaba IPO in New York? Not So Fast – WSJ.com The Hong Kong exchange’s willingness to hold public discussions about its listing regulations may not necessarily result in an Alibaba IPO in the city. Still, the talks could eventually loosen the exchange’s rules at a time when the city’s once-vibrant IPO market has been struggling to regain its momentum.

David Faber Says Alibaba IPO to “Blow the Socks Off” Twitter [Video] | Alizila – News about Alibaba Group, Taobao, Alibaba.com and China e-commerce CNBC’s David Faber had some interesting observations after Alibaba Group was valued at a “staggering” $190 billion by a Wall Street analyst. Watch the video as Faber walks through some of the justifications for a valuation that is almost twice that of previous estimates. Time will tell whether the nosebleed number will prove accurate, but as Faber says, “Alibaba, growing as quickly as it is, it will be fascinating to see when it does come public.” //Alibaba official blog talking up possible IPO valuation…

Lenovo’s new secret weapon: Hollywood star – Chinadaily.com.cn Meet Lenovo Group Ltd’s newest employee: American sitcom sensation Ashton Kutcher. The world’s largest personal computer maker said on Tuesday that the 35-year-old star is joining Lenovo as a product engineer. His job is to help the company’s young tablet team develop products that can compete with Apple Inc’s iPad series.

Huawei named premium sponsor and mobile partner of AC Milan – Xinhua George Zhao, CEO of Huawei Italy, said that after the great success of 2011 Super Cup sponsorship in Beijing, Huawei was ” excited to continue the partnership with AC Milan, a recognized football leader that perfectly matches the goal of building Huawei ‘s leadership within the consumer market.”

Qunar Boosts Estimated IPO Price Range to $12 to $14 an ADS – WSJ.com Prices Thursday I believe // Qunar has applied to have its ADS listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol QUNR.

58.com increases range to $15 to 16, proposed deal size is now $176 million – NASDAQ.com Prices Thursday I believe // 58.com, an online classifieds marketplace serving local merchants and consumers in China, raised the proposed deal size for its upcoming IPO on Tuesday. The Beijing, China-based company now plans to raise up to $176 million by offering 11.0 million shares at a price range of $15 to $16. The company had previously filed to offer the same number of shares at a range of $13 to $15.

China Mobile flags 4G on website, stokes iPhone speculation | Reuters China Mobile’s website, on its main page, displayed a cartoon tornado alongside the words “the invasion of 4G” and the dates “November 9-11” (www.10086.cn/1111). The banner links to a page showing two images of smartphones that resemble iPhones, with the caption: “Special discounts for new handsets? The newest? The biggest discounts?” China Mobile said it had no further details and Apple officials in China declined to comment about the advertisement. // look like generic smartphones to me

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY

Another Look at the Empress Dowager Cixi, This Time as the Great Modernizer – NYTimes.com Using extensive access to Beijing archives on Cixi that have not been available to biographers outside China, Ms. Chang presents her subject as neither the cruel despot nor the easily manipulated ruler that the Communist Party and other critics have long portrayed. Her book, “Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China” presents Cixi as a powerful, strong-willed woman responsible for most of the modernizing programs undertaken during her rule, only to be thwarted on many occasions by men who were sometimes in the pay of foreign powers.

河北发现3.6米长明代万历年间圣旨(图)_资讯频道_凤凰网 3.6 meter long imperial edict from the Ming Dynasty Wanli Emperor discovered in home in Hebei

Profile in Style | China’s Fashion Matchmaker – NYTimes.com As luxury brands try to crack the exploding Chinese market and the Chinese seek to export their own fashion stars to the West, Melvin Chua — bon vivant, image maker and cross-cultural connector — is the man in the middle.

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH

中央将遴选100名具冲击诺贝尔奖潜力人才_网易新闻中心 Central government to choose 100 talents to “attack” (try to finally win) a Nobel Prize

农业部1名副部长曾受聘美国公司推广转基因_新闻_腾讯网 claims that a vice minister of the Ministry of Agriculture, and a strong proponent of genetically modified foods, was once a paid consultant to Dupont…so business in Beijing not so different from business in DC?…// 据新华网昨天报道,原国防大学教授朱国林近日透露,某位大力推广转基因食品的副部长曾受聘于美国从事转基因研究的杜邦公司。

U.S., China to bid for overseas nuclear projects: U.S. energy secretary | Reuters The United States is committed to working with China on the development of new nuclear reactors in both countries and will also encourage joint bids for projects elsewhere, U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said in Beijing on Wednesday.

国家能源局发布页岩气产业政策 多项税费减免_财经频道_一财网 National Energy Bureau issues policies to support shale gas development…our neighbor works for a global mjor oil company on shale gas, leaving China before his tour is up as the company scaling back shale gas development plans here…// 为全面贯彻落实科学发展观,合理、有序开发页岩气资源,推进页岩气产业健康发展,提高天然气供应能力,促进节能减排,保障能源安全,根据国家相关法律法规,特制定本政策。

Legislation speeded up to reduce pollution – Chinadaily.com.cn A five-year legislative agenda revealed on Wednesday by the Standing Committee of the 12th National People’s Congress shows that the top legislature wants to review 11 environment-related draft laws and amendments. In the legislative plan drafted five years ago, only seven fell in this category. The standing committee, consisting of more than 170 members, was elected in March. Once a new committee is formed, it makes a legislative plan for its five-year tenure.

都江堰拍到野生大熊猫视频:倒立撒尿圈地(图)_新闻_腾讯网 camera catches wild panda peeing in Sichuan…does a handstand…a “Peeing Panda” post would probably do well on Buzzfeed

China Pushes Breastfeeding Amid Medical Bribe Crackdown – Bloomberg China “strictly bans” hospitals from receiving benefits from baby-formula makers and requires staff to retain receipts for milk powder products purchased, according to a statement on the central government’s website today. Baby-formula makers are also required to emphasize the benefits of breastfeeding in their labeling, it said.

 

BEIJING

北京学区房卖出土豪价:二手平房每平米超25万|学区房|单价|北京_新浪财经_新浪网 250-300,000 RMB/m for old housing zoned to one of Beijing’s top primary schools…and that is a bargain if it means your child can attend that school ,given the competition and the “fees” that have to be paid for kids not zoned to the school // 北京市西城区新文化街,西单寸土寸金的黄金地带。一名王姓房产经纪人告诉《第一财经日报》记者,目前该区域内二手平房单价为25万元~30万元/平方米,尽管房源多为胡同内的大杂院平房。新文化街111号是北京第二实验小学所在地。在美国一家机构近期推出的中国小学500强榜单上,这家小学位列全国第一。

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