American Hypocrisy, Chinese Anger
Bill Quick

Jackie Chan to America: ‘It’s Not Me. It’s You.’

The patriotic themes of the movie, however historically justified, have unsettled some critics, who felt that Chan’s script comes a bit too close to aping the Communist Party line.
“Entire pages of pedantic dialogue sound like they were scripted by a government official,” said Andrew Sun of the South China Morning Post.
“Regardless of what one believes about historical propriety and national rights, “CZ12″ is not the place to debate them, and after the third lecture on the foreign raiders and auction houses that profit from 19th century pillages, the subject simply becomes exhausting,” said Hollywood Reporter.
Jackie Chan’s evolution toward a more vocal pro-Beijing stance has become more pronounced in both his movies and his politics. His previous film, the patriotic epic “1911,” diligently and solemnly portrayed the military uprising that led to the overthrow of the Qing dynasty. While not quite propaganda, the movie was criticized for mythologizing its heroes, and neglecting aspects of history deemed unsavory to the Communist Party narrative.

Westerners don’t really understand that there is a hell of a lot of dislike for the West, and especially America, which has taken to lecturing China over a whole range of issues, such lecturing not being taken with anything like good grace.

China and the Chinese, even a large part of the overseas Chinese population, consider this sort of this to reek of hypocritical disrespect, and as the economic, military, and other powers of the mainland continue to grow, the irritation with western condescension grows as well.

Is Chan “ungrateful?” He made a lot of money here, certainly, but as noted philosopher Willie Sutton once remarked, he robbed banks because that was where the money was. I’m not sure he “owes” us anything, certainly not respect for a nation that feels entirely free to lecture his own country, while ignoring the log-sized motes in its own eye.

Bill Quick

About Bill Quick

I am a small-l libertarian. My primary concern is to increase individual liberty as much as possible in the face of statist efforts to restrict it from both the right and the left. If I had to sum up my beliefs as concisely as possible, I would say, "Stay out of my wallet and my bedroom," "your liberty stops at my nose," and "don't tread on me." I will believe that things are taking a turn for the better in America when married gays are able to, and do, maintain large arsenals of automatic weapons, and tax collectors are, and do, not.

Comments

American Hypocrisy, Chinese Anger — 5 Comments

  1. Can’t we all just get along? Let’s agree that the current American government is repulsive and hypocritical and that most of the Chinese governments, most particularly including the current one, have been repulsive and dishonest.

  2. Chinese culture goes back for six thousand years, and that is just the written part.

    Six thousand years. Not one year of democracy, much less of a representative republic.

    But. If all you knew of America was Hollywood, what would you think of us?

  3. “Entire pages of pedantic dialogue sound like they were scripted by a government official,”

    They probably were. Hong Kong is now under the control of Peking. They were going easy on Hong Kong and Shanghai to keep the needed income. I suspect that they are beginning to exert control of the media and entertainment industry.

  4. Westerners don’t really understand that there is a hell of a lot of dislike for the West, and especially America …

    Not just the West, but the rest of the World. The feeling is mutual — the Chinese are one of the most arrogant, condescending, xenophobic cultures in the history of the World. They feel disrespected because, in their view, no one else is worthy to comment on their conduct. All the pundits who say Chinese markets are great investments are fools — they have no respect for intellectual property rights, no compunction concerning the theft of anything desired, no honesty in business affairs or economic statistics (just ask Caterpillar about their recent loss from fraudulent accounting), massive corruption, etc., etc., etc. — in short, they have no sense of honor to anyone non-Chinese or, for that matter, to the Chinese masses.

  5. Not just the West, but the rest of the World. The feeling is mutual — the Chinese are one of the most arrogant, condescending, xenophobic cultures in the history of the World. They feel disrespected because, in their view, no one else is worthy to comment on their conduct.

    Seems to be a hallmark of many Asian cultures: See Japan.