Opinion / From the Press

The clowns behind gilded masks

(China Daily) Updated: 2014-07-28 08:59

Local governments are funding troupes to perform at the Golden Hall in Vienna to add glitter to their achievements. The shows need a lot of public funds to finance but hardly generate any proceeds. Such window dressing, which is rampant among officials should be discouraged, says an article in People's Daily. Excerpts:

Many local officials try every means possible to raise their standing in the bureaucracy. Among the most common are such acts as building makeshift walls to "hide" the poorly managed areas during senior leaders' inspection tours. Some officials build grandiose structures, such as giant sculptures, extravagant memorial halls and even man-made lakes on top of mountains, to add the proverbial feathers to their achievement caps. These structures cost a lot of public money and manpower but serve little purpose; they are white elephants.

Some officials buy master's or doctor's degrees to make their academic credentials look better. Some glorify themselves as artists. Others claim to be the descendents of well-known figures. And the purpose of all this is to impress their superiors and get promoted.

In ancient China, a notorious provincial governor organized a farewell ceremony for himself by hiring some people to come and see him off and shed tears in gratitude. People will eventually see through such deceit. And when the true colors of self-deceptive officials are revealed, they will look like clowns.

The opinions expressed on this page do not necessarily reflect those of China Daily.

Most Viewed Today's Top News