Win a copy of Event Streams in Action this week in the Java in General forum!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
programming forums Java Mobile Certification Databases Caching Books Engineering Micro Controllers OS Languages Paradigms IDEs Build Tools Frameworks Application Servers Open Source This Site Careers Other all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
Marshals:
  • Campbell Ritchie
  • Devaka Cooray
  • Liutauras Vilda
  • Jeanne Boyarsky
  • Bear Bibeault
Sheriffs:
  • Paul Clapham
  • Knute Snortum
  • Rob Spoor
Saloon Keepers:
  • Tim Moores
  • Ron McLeod
  • Piet Souris
  • Stephan van Hulst
  • Carey Brown
Bartenders:
  • Tim Holloway
  • Frits Walraven
  • Ganesh Patekar

China is at it again

 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 3244
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Greg Harris:

imagine brushing your teeth with JP-5... or drinking it in your coffee.


I thought that's how the Navy made it anyway
 
Sheriff
Posts: 6450
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Andrew Shafer:
Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr.
Michael Billington
Mumia Abu-Jamal
Dick Czubinski
Leonard Peltier
geronimo ji Jaga Pratt
Marilyn Buck
Janine Phillips Africa
Pu`uhonua Dennis "Bumpy" Kanahele
James E. Grant Jr.
Gunther Russbacher
Mario Moorhead
Oscar Lopez Rivera
and probably me if I keep talking like this
Something interesting to read.
[This message has been edited by Andrew Shafer (edited June 08, 2001).]


In reference to the list of criminals you posted, a criminal with an agenda is still a criminal. Regarding the link, I read that link. It floored me. In fact it sounds as if it was written by someone who is bitter over their incarceration. I don't think I've ever read such a crock in my life. It is basically trying to excuse criminal behavior by foisting responsibility for the behavior off on society. "I'm not an immoral and bad person, society MADE me that way." This is just another example of the victim society that we are becoming. Personal responsibility is no longer an option and instead there is always someone else, be it government or "society", who is responsible for your misfortunes.
I am a volunteer Firefighter/EMT and I come across "society's victims" on a regular basis, both in the community and within the serveral prisons, jail, and criminal mental facility within our area. What I meet are many people who've made poor choices in their lives, not victims. The woman shooting her husband, the man shooting at the police, the child murderer, the arsonist, the drug dealer, the drunk driver causing a three-car pile-up, these are not in any way victims. To see them that way is to do THEIR victims a grave disservice. People need to start taking responsibility for their own actions again. It's really starting to get sickening.
But we are now getting WAY off topic. It is a pipe dream to think those so-called American politcal prisoners are in US prisons because they disagree with our form of government. However in China this will get you inprisoned. That is what a political prisoner is. If we did that there would be a lot of Democrats in prison right now;
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 1012
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i went to the link as well... i looked deeper into that website and found out that it is called:
Welcome to the Hampstead Anarchist and Socialist Collective Page
of course this page is going to bash our government!!! what the hell do you expect from them??? if you want to have a logical discussion about government, find a better source of information.
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Now if you could just take off those American colored glasses for a minute. . .
First off, from my whole post, this is the only thing you have a comment on?

In reference to the list of criminals you posted, a criminal with an agenda is still a criminal.


Crime is defined by and arbitrarily enforced by governments. Hello, what was Nelson Mandela charged with and convicted of? I'm sure the Chinese government has charged and convicted all their political prisoners with crimes.

I don't think I've ever read such a crock in my life.


But I bet you believe everything they tell you on CNN. . .
The fact is we have created a profitable prison INDUSTRY! People are being incarcerated because it is profitable, but that is another thread.
As for crimes and victims, what about President George W. Cokehead? Why isn't he in prison? He violated laws, right? Not all of us have a family that can make that kind of thing disappear.
A person that steals a loaf of bread is a criminal deserving of our scorn, but a person who steals millions of dollars, peoples lives and vitality will never run out of cocktail invitations. And so it goes. . .
I agree with you that many people make poor choices and its really starting to get sickening. I just have a problem with the racist and classist manner in which justice is administered in our country.

. . .of course this page is going to bash our government!!! what the hell do you expect from them??? if you want to have a logical discussion about government, find a better source of information.


I'm not sure what you people consider information, that link is only opinion, some peoples opinion. These people are in no way associated with me or anyone I listed. I just thought they had an intriguing perspective on political prisoners.
If you would like to refute their position, please do so. To label it as a crock or dismiss the position as Socialist is not reinforcing your position or conducive to a logical discussion.
Not that I particularly wanted to discuss anything about that position, I just stumbled across it and considered it thought provoking. (It seems provoking is the keyword)

It is a pipe dream to think those so-called American politcal prisoners are in US prisons because they disagree with our form of government.


Ahh logical discussion. . .
Perhaps, for the sake of discussion, of all the people that were listed, one, just one of them was in prison because they disagree with our government?
You call this a pipe dream, without making any attempts to refute the facts. The first sign of a problem is denial.

If we did that there would be a lot of Democrats in prison right now;


But not G. W. Crackhead of course. . .
Honestly, if the government really enforced our laws, half of congress would be in jail.
Alas, we are getting WAY off topic. . .(its probably my fault)
Can you imagine what would happen if the US got ahold of a Chinese surveillance aircraft that was trolling the coast of California?
Would we send it back in one piece? (we already sent a Russian plane back in little pieces) Assuming of course we didn't just blow it out of the sky and then deny it ever happened.
Honestly, having spent time in other countries and working with a lot of foreign nationals has convinced me of just how lucky I am to have been born when and where I was. I just think Americans are politically myopic when it comes to world affairs. We tend to think we are always right, no matter what. I consider this tendency a dangerous liability when it limits our available courses of action.
 
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator


Can you say Spin? Why were the Gaurdsmen there with weapons if there wasn't a possibility they would fire them? I'm sure the Chinese probably spin their "huge mistake" the same way.


The guardsmen were armed because there was already a bombing by student activists on the campus and there were riots going on.
They fired when, as is heard on the tapes of the incident, the sound of a gunshot was heard coming from the crowd. It is likely that the sound was from a firecracker.


The first statement is true, the second is false. The government office supervising the study was the predecessor to today's Centers for Disease Control (CDC)


Which does not make it official government policy. The fact is that a group of doctors took it upon themselves to carry on the experiment without approval of the government.


Modern spin, the civil war was fought over economics, secession and pride. Slavery may have ended in the US, but racism is still going strong. By the way, did you ever read the speech where Abe Lincoln said the whites and blacks shouldn't mix? It is out there. For this side of the story, read Forced Into Glory: Abraham Lincoln's White Dream.


Really... So this speech given by Robert Barnwell Rhett at South Carolina's Secession Convention had nothing to do with slavery? Perhaps you need to learn something about history before you make a complete ass of yourself.
" In spite of all disclaimers and professions there can be but one end to the submission by the South to the rule of a sectional Anti-Slavery Government at Washington; and that end, directly or indirectly, must be the emancipation of the slaves of the South. The hypocrisy of thirty years -- the faithlessness of their whole course from the commencement of our union with them -- show that the people of the non-slaveholding North are not and cannot be safe associates of the slaveholding South under a common Government."
As to Lincoln's opinions, he thought that whites and blacks could never live in peace but he came around from that opinion and when he ran for president he had a very different belief.

Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr.

Convicted of tax evasion and securities fraud.

Michael Billington

A Larouche associate, he conspired with Larouche to commit securities fraud cheating people out of millions of dollars.

Mumia Abu-Jamal

Murdered a policeman

Dick Czubinski

Broke into the IRS computer system and browsed through individual tax returns. He was convicted but on appeal his conviction was overturned. The problem was that the laws at the time required him to have gained some tangible value. What he did would today definitely be a crime.
and on and on.
Instead of giving us a list of names and expecting us to do the research, why not give us one name that you persoanlly believe is a political prisoner in the US.
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
And as to your comment about "G. W. Crackhead" - there is no evidence that GWB ever used crack or cocaine. There have been many rumours that GWB has refused to acknowledge but even if he did use cocaine when he was young, the statute of limitations would have run out years ago.
In any case, you claim that GWB "violated laws". Name one.
 
Andrew Shafer
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thomas Paul, a voice of reason, someone who provides substance with his arguments, a gentleman and a scholar.
In the order of your responses, beginning with Kent State, I respect your right to interpret the event in any manner you wish, but the fact is armed US troops opened fire on US citizens.
Second, if a government office supervising a study doesn't make that study government sanctioned, then please sir, explain what would?
Third, I will concede that perhaps the Southern states were on some level fighting FOR slavery, but this does not imply the North was fighting primarily AGAINST slavery. Futher, although I wouldn't consider myself a civil war expert, I know enough to state unequivocally that my previous arguments concerning this chapter of American history are well founded. If you care to check, there is a body of literature that supports this position. You don't have to agree with that position, but you do yourself a disservice if you summarily dismiss it.
Of course, I reserve the right to make a complete ass out of myself at my discretion.
Finally, onto the infamous list. . .
I was asked to name one political prisoner. I thought I would give you a list to pick from.
Thomas, I think you missed the point I was trying to make about criminal conviction. You say this guy was convicted of this or that, and the appropriate response is, of course they were.
As were most political prisoners in other countries.
Tax Evasion, I mean come on now, without questioning the legality of the IRS, the tax code is so convoluted that many Americans could be convicted of some violation at the whim of those who enforce the law.
I'm not personally attached to any of these arguments, but I like to see both sides of the story.
If you really want my opinion, I feel the Leonard Peltier case to be the most compelling.
Also since you didn't like the Anachist Socialists (seems like an oxymoron to me, but hey thats the beautiful thing about America) maybe you will be more receptive to this.
As for GW, maybe I got a little crazy with the nicknames. (I did reserve the right to make an ass out of myself)
As for violation of laws, possession of a controled substance would be my first answer and I don't see how statute of limitations has anything to do with this. He would have been tried at the time. (not that I'm arguing in favor of incarceration or criminalizaion for possession, but anyway)
Since you may not believe the leader of the free world used cocaine. (In my opinion GW didn't use cocaine, just like OJ Simpson didn't. . .oh never mind, we'll agree to disagree)
How about DWI and corruption of a minor?
Even if GW never did anything illegal (note: illegal != wrong != illegal) and is a swell guy, which I'm sure he is. . .
Are trying to tell me that justice in the US is not administered with a racist/classist bias?
Anyway, it is Friday. . .
Thomas, Greg and Jason, I'd like to thank you gentleman for all the fun.
Have a nice weekend! Javaranch rules!
(not to discriminate against those of you without a weekend)

[This message has been edited by Andrew Shafer (edited June 08, 2001).]
 
Jason Menard
Sheriff
Posts: 6450
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Just a couple of quick comments. I don't believe everything I see on CNN. Actually I think CNN is probably one of the most biased news organizations in our country and they seem to enjoy creating the news more so than reporting it. By bias, a study of their reporting on events in Israel show a very strong pro-Palestinean bias (we can get into this at another time, but feel free to check into it). And when I say creating the news, one example that comes to mind easily is US troop involvement in Somalia. Right or wrong we would have most likely not been there if it wasn't due to the reporting of CNN primarily, and also of other news organizations (again a subject for debate at another time). Just my opinion, but I hold little respect for CNN in particular, and media in general.
The other little niggling point I have Andrew is with your reference to US troops being used against US citizens in reference to Kent State. I thought you had posetd in here that you spent a short time in the Navy so I wouldn't have expected you to make this mistake. The troops at Kent State were Ohio National Guardsmen called upon by the Governor of Ohio. These were not federal US troops but were state militia. A minor point, but it does lessen its revelance to any discussion about how corrupt the US government is.
As a side note, there are many things the US government does that really bother me to the core (DMCA for one as it is a direct attack on our constitutional freedoms). But I have also been around enough to know a bit about the other options to our form of government and they are even less appealing to me. And I don't look at our position in the world on any stance we take as necessarily being the "right" choice, but usually it is the "right" choice for us.
Also (so much for this being short), I do believe that BOTH Peltieres (Ronald and Leonard) were guilty of taking part in the murder of the federal the agents, but I also think that their exact role is a little murky.
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Andrew Shafer:
In the order of your responses, beginning with Kent State, I respect your right to interpret the event in any manner you wish, but the fact is armed US troops opened fire on US citizens.


But you were attempting to compare Kent State to the Tianeman Square Massacre. Thw two events are not comparable either morally or any other way.


Second, if a government office supervising a study doesn't make that study government sanctioned, then please sir, explain what would?


If it had been approved as a line item in a budget passed my elected representatives. Some doctors in a government office are not the government.


Third, I will concede that perhaps the Southern states were on some level fighting FOR slavery, but this does not imply the North was fighting primarily AGAINST slavery.


If you really wish to make this claim, I will get you about 50 or 60 quotes from famous Americans who fought in the Civil War saying that the main purpose of the war and the reason they fought in it was to end slavery.

Thomas, I think you missed the point I was trying to make about criminal conviction. You say this guy was convicted of this or that, and the appropriate response is, of course they were. As were most political prisoners in other countries
Tax Evasion, I mean come on now, without questioning the legality of the IRS, the tax code is so convoluted that many Americans could be convicted of some violation at the whim of those who enforce the law.

But Larouche paid no taxes on huge profits from an illegal securites deal that defrauded people of millions. I doubt that he was convicted because he got confused about whether he could use the 1040-EZ or not.


If you really want my opinion, I feel the Leonard Peltier case to be the most compelling.

I don't see Peltier as a political prisoner. I don't know enough about the case to say whether he is guilty or not, but even if he is not guilty I don't see that his trial and conviction was because of political reasons. Lots of people are in jail who are innocent because the evidence seemed to point in their direction. Peltier was convicted because he seemed to be the one who did it. In any case, none of these show the rampant disregard for justice that is governmental policy in China.


As for GW, maybe I got a little crazy with the nicknames. (I did reserve the right to make an ass out of myself). As for violation of laws, possession of a controled substance would be my first answer and I don't see how statute of limitations has anything to do with this. He would have been tried at the time.

So you whine about people who have been convicted of crimes (including a cop-killer) being in jail and then complain about people who have no evidence against them other than rumors not being in jail.

How about DWI and corruption of a minor?

How about it? He pled guilty to DWI. How does that make him a crack-head?

Are trying to tell me that justice in the US is not administered with a racist/classist bias?

Yes it is true that if you are wealthy you can get away with murder (OJ proved that). Which has what to do with the discussion of the moral equivalency between China and the US?
But let's remember how this discussion started. You attempted to somehow relate a few deviations from the norm in the US (Kent State, syphilis patients, japanese internment) and compare that to the normal abuse of freedoms that occur in China on a daily basis.
 
Andrew Shafer
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

This thread started as a completely one-sided rant, I was only trying to provide some counter-point.
I'm not sure where anyone got the idea I was in the Navy, certainly I never stated as much. (I stated I was in the military)
As for the Kent State National Guardsmen, first, who trains the national guard? Second, what is the complete chain of command?

But you were attempting to compare Kent State to the Tianeman Square Massacre. Thw two events are not comparable either morally or any other way.


There are some qualitative differences, but to say they cannot be compared in any way is certainly incredulous.

If it had been approved as a line item in a budget passed my elected representatives. Some doctors in a government office are not the government.


This is an unnatural and narrow criterion. This position would exclude almost all activity by governmental agents.

If you really wish to make this claim, I will get you about 50 or 60 quotes from famous Americans who fought in the Civil War saying that the main purpose of the war and the reason they fought in it was to end slavery.


I'm aware there are quotations, quotations of all forms and context. The position I was pointing out to you was elucidated by numerous scholarly authors who I'm sure have seen most of your quotes.

I don't see Peltier as a political prisoner.


How convenient. . . How about we agree to disagree with each other?

So you whine about people who have been convicted of crimes (including a cop-killer) being in jail and then complain about people who have no evidence against them other than rumors not being in jail.


Not sure what you consider whining? After a cover up the only things left are rumors. If you don't believe GW ever used, that's nice, but I tend to believe he never exhaled.

Yes it is true that if you are wealthy you can get away with murder (OJ proved that). Which has what to do with the discussion of the moral equivalency between China and the US?


It has to do with a disregard for justice. . .

You attempted to somehow relate a few deviations from the norm in the US (Kent State, syphilis patients, japanese internment) and compare that to the normal abuse of freedoms that occur in China on a daily basis.


You call it a deviation from the norm, I call it a pattern.
I was certainly never trying to justify the injustices in China or any other place or time. I was only trying to illuminate some domestic abuse of freedom. As I previously stated, I feel quite lucky to have been born in this time and place, the United States of America. In agreement with Jason, there are things our government does that really bother me. I also recognize my responsibility in a democratic society to learn and participate in the governing processes. If you see things differently than me, I respect your perspective and would fight for you to retain it, but I do not have to agree.
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Andrew Shafer:
I also recognize my responsibility in a democratic society to learn and participate in the governing processes. If you see things differently than me, I respect your perspective and would fight for you to retain it, but I do not have to agree.

Right there is the most profound difference between the US and China. The fact is that China is a criminal nation run by criminals. The US is far from perfect but there is no country on the planet where the rights of individuals is more closely guarded and respected.
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Andrew Shafer:

You call it a deviation from the norm, I call it a pattern.


So three things over the course of 150 years is a pattern? Are you sure you meant that George Bush was using drugs?
 
Andrew Shafer
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

The fact is that China is a criminal nation run by criminals.


These are the kinds of sweeping generalizations that I have a problem with.

The US is far from perfect but there is no country on the planet where the rights of individuals is more closely guarded and respected.


That may be your opinion, and I agree we have a high degree of liberty, but I don't see these rights as particularly well guarded. Some other people in the world must also disagree considering they removed the US from the United Nations Human Rights Committee. I'm sure they are all wrong also.

So three things over the course of 150 years is a pattern?


Certainly not, we were having a hard enough time discussing the few things I mentioned.

Are you sure you meant that George Bush was using drugs?


George W. Bush has failed to deny allegations of cocaine use. Asked directly, time and again, Bush has demurred. He admits to drinking heavily as a young man, but on cocaine, he has repeated a series of non-answers, going so far as to say he does not want to go into his past because that may give a young person an excuse to do what he had done. Basic logic fills in the blanks of Bush's non-answer.
Have you ever done cocaine?
Possible answers: two
Yes or no
Only one of these answers fulfills the condition of giving a young person an excuse to engage in questionable behavior. . .
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Andrew Shafer:
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The fact is that China is a criminal nation run by criminals.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
These are the kinds of sweeping generalizations that I have a problem with.


Really? So a statement like "Nazi Germany was run by criminals" would be a sweeping generalization also, I assume.


quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The US is far from perfect but there is no country on the planet where the rights of individuals is more closely guarded and respected.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
That may be your opinion, and I agree we have a high degree of liberty, but I don't see these rights as particularly well guarded. Some other people in the world must also disagree considering they removed the US from the United Nations Human Rights Committee. I'm sure they are all wrong also.


I understand now... This is pointless. The fact is that the US was removed from the Committee for political reasons mostly because we have had big mouths about human rights and because we don't pay our bills on time. Do you really think that Sudan has a better human rights record than the US? (Sudan is on the committee.) If you don't see human rights as particularly well guarded then I suggest you flee this country before the black helicopters come to your door and cart you away.
 
Andrew Shafer
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Dear Thomas Paul,
You are certainly right about one thing, this is pointless.
You disparage me for any, in your opinion, unthinkable comparison, but now you want to compare the Chinese with the Nazi. So be it!
As for human rights:
In October 1998, Amnesty International issued a 150-page human rights report on the US, citing a host of facts revealing that the US has a "persistent and widespread pattern of human rights violations," while considering itself in the position of being in the "international leadership in the field of human rights."
Furthermore, Russia and the United States are the world leaders in incarceration, with imprisonment rates 6-10 times that of most industrialized nations.
China is 103 per 100,000 population, in 1995 the US had 1,585,401 inmates while China had 1,236,534 with a substantially larger population, almost 6 times the US rate!
This is not about black helicopters; this is merely an excercise in critical examination of observable fact.
Thomas, one of us is probably being unreasonable, I leave that to be decided in the minds of those who might happen to read this worn out thread.
 
Jason Menard
Sheriff
Posts: 6450
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I thought Amnesty International's only beef with us, and the reason they keep slamming us, is our continued use of the death penalty? Are there any other reasons?
Maybe the death penalty should be a topic for another thread, so I won't go there.
Jason
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Amnesty International's Report on China, 2001:
2000 saw continued repression of peaceful dissent throughout the country. There was no sign of any relaxation of the 1999 crack-down on fundamental freedoms. Thousands of people were arbitrarily detained for peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of expression, association or religion. Some were sentenced to long prison terms after unfair trials under national security legislation; others were detained without trial and assigned to up to three years' ''re-education through labour''. Torture and ill-treatment of prisoners continued to be widespread. The limited and incomplete records available showed that at least 1,511 people were sentenced to death and 1,000 executed; the true figures were believed to be far higher. In the autonomous regions of Xinjiang and Tibet, religious freedom continued to be severely restricted and people suspected of nationalist activities or sympathies were subjected to particularly harsh repression.
Followers of the Falun Gong spiritual group faced detention, unfair trials, torture and imprisonment as part of the government's continuing crack-down on groups it considered to be ''heretical organizations''. Legislation was used retroactively to convict alleged leaders of the Falun Gong on politically driven charges and new regulations were introduced to further restrict fundamental freedoms. Since the Falun Gong was banned in July 1999, at least 93 adherents were believed to have died in police custody. Some of the deaths were a result of suicide or injuries inflicted during forcible feeding, but most were reported to have died as a result of torture. New arrests and detentions were reported daily throughout 2000. Thousands, possibly tens of thousands, of practitioners were believed to remain in detention at the end of the year. Many were assigned without trial to ''re-education through labour'' and some were detained in psychiatric hospitals.
In September, 24 Roman Catholics, including a priest and 20 nuns, were detained in Fujian province when police found them holding church services in a mushroom-processing factory. According to reports, Father Liu Shaozhang was so severely beaten by police during arrest that he vomited blood. Two of the nuns were allegedly released the following day after parishioners paid a large sum of money to the police; the whereabouts of the other 22 detainees remained unknown at the end of the year.
The authorities once again suppressed all attempts to mark the anniversary of the June 1989 crack-down on pro-democracy activists when hundreds of civilians were massacred and tens of thousands of others were injured or arrested. Every year since 1989, the anniversary has sparked further arrests and detentions of those seeking justice for the victims and their families.
Eleven years on, no public inquiry had been instituted into the events and no compensation had been granted to the families of the victims. At the end of 2000 more than 200 people were believed to remain in prison for their activities in connection with the 1989 protests.
Torture and ill-treatment of detainees remained widespread. Victims included both political detainees and criminal suspects. Incidents were reported in police stations, detention centres, prisons, labour camps, repatriation centres and drug rehabilitation centres. There were also frequent reports of the use of torture during non-custodial control measures such as ''residential supervision'' and during the ''special isolation'' of officials being investigated for alleged corruption.
Torture during interrogation was perpetrated against all types of detainees and was a component part of some high-profile anti-crime or political campaigns such as the crack-down on the Falun Gong.
The extent of deaths in custody as a result of torture remained largely unacknowledged by the authorities. In many cases, particularly those involving political prisoners or perceived enemies of the government, officials simply denied responsibility and no proper investigation was undertaken.

http://www.web.amnesty.org/web/ar2001.nsf/webasacountries/CHINA?OpenDocument
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Jason Menard:
I thought Amnesty International's only beef with us, and the reason they keep slamming us, is our continued use of the death penalty? Are there any other reasons?

That is the main reason. There are complaints of sporadic police brutality throughout the country and many of these complaints have been investigated and have led to civil trials against the police departments involved. AI has no evidence that police brutality is widespread or accepted in this country.
 
Andrew Shafer
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Thomas, you forgot to cut this out of the report on China:
Although implementation of the law continued to be arbitrary in many cases, the government renewed efforts to encourage implementation of 1997 legal changes, including some aimed at improving the fairness of trials. Further legal reform was debated with reference to international human rights treaties which China had signed but not yet ratified. In November, the government signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, designed to set up a program of technical cooperation in the field of human rights.
For your reading pleasure the 2001 report on the USA:
http://web.amnesty.org/web/ar2001.nsf/webamrcountries/UNITED+STATES+OF+AMERICA?OpenDocument
An AI report from 1998:
http://www.web.amnesty.org/ai.nsf/index/AMR510031998
 
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Posts: 13974
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Wow how horrible the US is: "Police brutality, disputed shootings and ill-treatment in prisons and jails were reported." Amazing... disputed shootings and ill treatment is prisons. How horrible. No wonder you consider the US and China comparable.
I find it unbelievable that anyone could think that China and the US are on an equal moral plain. China debates about whether they should torture prisoners or not and you get annoyed because I left that out from my quotes from the AI report.
 
Greg Harris
Ranch Hand
Posts: 1012
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Excellent point, Sahir!
( if i try to say anything i will just take away from your post )
 
Jason Menard
Sheriff
Posts: 6450
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Actually, if you got to the AI site and look up other countries, they have something negative to say about EVERY country. Highlighting their report against the US led me to believe they had a particular axe to grind with the U.S.. In fact, many of the comments made against the U.S. in their report are echoed in reports of other "civilized" countries such as the UK, France, and Japan to name a few.
So what this points out is that their is no Utopia on this planet. There is racism, injustice, and killings in every country on the planet.
The political bent of AI is apparent when in their last sentence of the first paragraph on the U.S. they make a point to add that GW was elected president, giving the appearance that this foreign agency disapproves with our constitutional process. Also they have issues with the incarceration of Leonard Peltier for killing two FBI agents. They also have a problem with the use of restraints by prison officials and police (they don't seem to have a problem with police and prison officers being assaulted by prisoners though). I would really be interested in learning how AI would like a prison to be run.
AI has done some great things, but their extreme views and political bias makes them lose a bit of credibility with me.
[This message has been edited by Jason Menard (edited June 13, 2001).]
 
Andrew Shafer
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Thomas,
I'm certainly not annoyed by anything you have done, but I thought cutting and pasting the worst you could find from the AI report wasn't telling the whole story, although I do commend your including the link to the report. In the passage I cut AI indicates Chinese effort to reform in compliance with international concerns on human rights. (I would say international law, but that is currently a misnomer)
"Police brutality, disputed shootings and ill-treatment in prisons and jails were reported."
First, are you arguing that these things are not horrible?
Second, are you trying to imply that is all the report contains?

I find it unbelievable that anyone could think that China and the US are on an equal moral plain.


Respectfully, I find it unbelievable that anyone would think that they are so fundamentally different.
Dear Sahir,

Regarding the accusations of "racial profiling" in police stops and searches, it seems that this "profiling" is generally aimed at certain ethnic groups. Is it possible that this profiling is not motivated by racist attitudes but by certain preconcieved notions.


That "profiling" is generally aimed at certain ethnicities is considered the problem, hence, the accusations of "racial" profiling. Furthermore, certain preconceived notions are by definition racists attitudes.
There is truth in what you are trying to illustrate by analogy, but I think you misunderstand what is really at the heart of the issue.
We are not talking about trying to solve one particular crime, we are talking about quasi-institutionalized harassment of citizens based on skin color.
And to answer your question, American is neither an ethnic nor racial segment, so there could be no argument of racial motivation.
And finally Jason,

Highlighting their report against the US led me to believe they had a particular axe to grind with the U.S.. In fact, many of the comments made against the U.S. in their report are echoed in reports of other "civilized" countries such as the UK, France, and Japan to name a few.


I'm not following your logic on this one, AI has something negative to say about EVERY country, but they somehow have an axe to grind with the US. Do they also have an axe to grind with the UK, France and Japan? Non Sequitor

So what this points out is that their is no Utopia on this planet. There is racism, injustice, and killings in every country on the planet.


Exactly the point I've been trying to make.

The political bent of AI is apparent when in their last sentence of the first paragraph on the U.S. they make a point to add that GW was elected president, giving the appearance that this foreign agency disapproves with our constitutional process.


Jason, this is really a stretch. I challenge anyone reading this to go read the report on the US. They make a point to add that GW was elected president because at the very top they have listed William Jefferson Clinton as the head of state. I contend that the perceived disapproval with our constitutional process is purely your personal projection and was certainly not intended by any agent of AI. If you know anything about AI's political bias, then you would realize disapproving of constitutionally elected leaders is not one of them.

Also they have issues with the incarceration of Leonard Peltier for killing two FBI agents.


They have issues with inconsistencies in the trial and evidence which convicted Peltier. In your death penalty thread, you must recognize the possibility of wrongful conviction, why is that not possible here?
Personally, I wouldn't support every position that AI has on every issue, but I believe they supply some comparative objectivity that we cannot have if our only perspective is from inside the US looking out.
 
Andrew Shafer
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

I wonder if there is a message board in China with a thread entitled USA is at it again?
 
Jason Menard
Sheriff
Posts: 6450
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator


They make a point to add that GW
was elected president because at the very top they have listed William Jefferson Clinton as the head of state. I contend that the
perceived disapproval with our constitutional process is purely your personal projection and was certainly not intended by any
agent of AI


Yes this may have been something I have read into it. Naturally my eyes were drawn to the bold text in which for every country report I have read is listed a summary of concerns AI has with that country. This is the section where they mentioned the election of GW, coincidentally right after some words on execution. They don't however link the two and I have gone back to see where Bubba is listed as the president so I will give them the benefit of the doubt and agree that I read into things. I also have gotten the impression that AI has a very strong European flavor, which also may also color my perceptions (having spent significant time in Europe I am well aware of Europe's 'holier than thou' stance towards the US, but thats another topic).

Highlighting their report against the US led me to believe they had a particular axe to grind with the U.S..


What I meant was that by you highlighting AI's report on the US, and prior to me checking out their website, I was getting the impression from you that AI had severe issues with the US much in the way they do a country such as China or Sudan. However by actually going to the page and reading the site I see that I was mistaken. In other words, I thought you were saying AI considered the US a big time human rights violator.
As far as racial profiling goes, I have mixed feelings about this. In theory stopping somebody based primarily on the color of their skin is a bad thing, I totaly agree. However I don't believe that it is as simple as this.
For example, let's say there is some inner city almost exclusively black neighborhood that is a well known drug market. White kids from the college and surrounding suburbs make it a point to drive into this neighborhood to purchase drugs. The police know this and begin to stop white kids in this neighborhood for any possible infraction (2 mph over speed limit, failure to signal lane change, whatever). Is this racial profiling? Yep. Is it good police work? Probably. The police know that in this case experience has taught them that the white kids coming into this area are here to purchase drugs, so in an effort to stem the drug trade in the area, they are zelous about stopping individuals who clearly don't belong there who are coming in only to commit a crime. Naturally there may be any number of legitimate reasons white kids may be coming into this neighborhood. Looking at statistics however may show that a proportionately higher number of white individuals were stopped in this area, even though the infractions were legitimate. Defintely racial profiling, but it also happens to be effective policing, without impinging on anyone's rights (remember in racial profiling the debate isnt that the reasons for stopping aren't legitimate, it is the racial proportions that are in question). Do you think the predominately law abiding citizens of the area are grateful for the police attempting to keep crime down? You bet. This isn't even a far fetched example.
Police officers patrol certain areas day in and day out. They learn to recognize who belongs in an area and who seems out of place. They learn to recognize patterns of crime in their area as well. Where does the line between good, proactive policing end and racial profiling begin?
We have severe hang-ups about race in our country, which is understandable, but believe it or not we are one of the most racially tolerant nations in the world (ever been to Europe or Asia?). I think it might be possible to try to approach an issue like this a little more subjectively.
 
Andrew Shafer
Ranch Hand
Posts: 338
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

I hope I did not paint the picture of the US as a "big time" human rights violator, this was certainly not intended.
As I stated many times previously, I'm quite glad to be living as a citizen in this nation.
Maybe we should start a seperate racial profiling discussion?
The example you offer is quite insightful, but I do think that a certain portion of the debate does focus on the legitimacy of some of the reasons people are stopped.
Not to change the topic, another thing that might be worth a moments ponder is why and how there are areas of our country where people "don't belong", particularly with respect to race as you have mentioned.
Is it just me or has meaningless drivel been getting pretty heavy?
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 324
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Its been great reading this debate. I guess one takes extreme positions for the sake of argument. Nobody really wins a debate, but the process of debating surely wins out. The process of examining the extreme positions is a great learning experience. Slowly but surely we realize that the world is not black and white but various shades of grey.
Since I believe in the ideals of democracy and freedom, I percieve the American system on a higher moral plane than the Chinese. The American leadership in the world attests to the success of their system. Not the least aspect of this success is their willingness to examine their own faults. Indians going to America are pleasantly surprised at the respect and equal-opportunity they get, testifying to a self-confident and successful society.
But I blend this perception of American superiority with some caution. It is my perception based on the values I subscribe to.
I have met a few Chinese people who are quite happy with their system. It is possible and plausible to argue that the Chinese system is moral. Their system affords them a reasonably good life-style (by Asian standards). And compared to their Asian neighbours they are developing rapidly. I also suspect (not sure) that they are more successful in controlling the non-political crime. Some Americans may even envy the Chinese justice system, as seen in the death penalty thread.
One may cite facts endlessly, but the larger picture always defies a precise definition. Reality is far too complicated for clear categorisation. Ultimately, I think, the debate turns on issues of philosphy which can be argued endlessly.

 
Rahul Rathore
Ranch Hand
Posts: 324
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Originally posted by Sahir Shibley:
I presume Rahul met them in a foreign country (India?) [/B]


Yes some Chinese artistes touring India. They seemed quite sanguine about their life-style. They also told me some strange things. Like producing cheap quality goods is a deliberate policy ! Cheap quality goods can be priced lower. And they break down faster. Hence they need to be repurchased faster. That increases the overall sale and hence Industrial activity. Considering the way Chinese goods have flooded the Indian market, this policy seems to be working. I was also surprised to hear that production activity is carried out in 5 hour shifts. A single worker can work no more than one 5 hour shift per day. This is to distribute the employment potential to a larger number of people ! And then there is the social security.
Personally I don't have any warm feelings for China and am tempted to indulge in China-bashing. But I restrain myself here. Somebody compared the Chinese regime to a Nazi regime. I wouldn't go that far. And I do concede the possibility that others could plausibly/justifiably view the regime as moral.


[This message has been edited by Rahul Rathore (edited June 16, 2001).]
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!