The 29th Olympics of the modern era have commenced! The world is focused on The People's Republic Of China this August. I admit I find myself amazed and mystified by this nation which has embraced the future while clinging to ancient ways of life. I am not alone as the western world is fascinated by the most populous country on earth. The following is a short excerpt from Jim Caple's look at China on ESPN's website:
"Rob Gifford's entertaining and educational journey across the country's main highway, "China Road," paints a picture of the nation that is both disturbing (pollution, corruption, ethnic crackdowns and governmentally forced abortions) and exhilarating. China is never simple ("if you're not confused," he writes, "then you haven't been paying attention"), but a message that comes through often in his book is that for its faults, the nation continually offers more options and freedom to its citizens than one or two generations before.
"For me," Gifford writes of a bus conversation with a man in his 50s, "the mere possibility of government intrusion in my life is unacceptable. For him, the fact those possibilities have receded, even if they are still there in the background, means modern China is Paradise. 'Compared to what?' is always the question you have to ask in China. This man has probably seen and suffered things, and participated in events few Westerners have ever had to bear. Now he can choose what he does. And that, to him, is progress."
Applicable quote of the day:
"Reform is China's second revolution."
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