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(China Daily)
Updated: 2009-02-26 07:45

Slumdog story all too common

It's really hard to find a good reason, for everyone endowed with an ability to reason, to spend money watching "Slumdog Millionaire".

Thanks to the articles provided by China Daily in the page "Life" of February 23, 2009, we know now that this Oscar -winning movie shows, of course in the typical highly artistic way of great Western film productions, the most absurd hopes of the underprivileged young workers of the third world.

The movie shows the problems that the poor have to endure in the emerging economies, and judging by its runaway success - succeeds in making them appear normal, acceptable, and even funny.

Nevertheless, it's really not worth wasting our time, and human sensitivity, to watch "gangsters using a spoon to scoop out the eyes of boys and girls" so they could 'earn double' as beggars".

It's strange indeed that there are Indians who felt offended by the word "slumdog". A dog's life is definitely not that abject.

Cervini in Beijing

Via email

How to leverage a rich culture

"Culture plays a vital role in promoting Sino-African relations," President Hu Jintao made this comment while on a visit to the Chinese Culture Center in Mauritius on Feb 17.

The Chinese Culture Center, the first cultural facility that the Chinese government opened overseas, has expanded over the past 20 years. Apart from language teaching and introduction of traditional Chinese culture, it has also hosted arts and photo exhibitions, performances and film festivals, which attracted successive presidents and prime ministers. China has opened seven such culture centers overseas, and will open at least five more.

In a global information age, soft sources of power such as culture, political values, and diplomacy are part of what makes a great power. Success depends not only on whose army wins, but also on whose story wins. But China's soft power still has a long way to go.

China has always had an attractive traditional culture; the problem now is how to make the most effective use of its rich cultural reservoir to influence the outside world.

Meteohoo

on the China Daily website

Protecting rights of farmers

The objectives of doubling the per capita income of rural residents by 2020 are to lift the living standards of the peasants and narrow the income gap between farmers and urbanites.

The government has heard and is responding to the dissatisfaction of the rural population and is acting to formulate laws which will protect the farmers from corrupt land-grabbing local officials. This move would hopefully redress past wrongs and stabilize the rural economy.

With new legislation, farmers will be able to sell their rights attached to their land to reorganize agriculture and rural communities. However, I do see a need to provide unbiased legal and financial services to farmers contemplating the move to sell their land rights.

Another step forward for China.

Cestmoi

on the China Daily website

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(China Daily 02/26/2009 page9)