Matthew Forney: Cut and Paste

From Time Asia:

China’s 68 million Communist Party members have spent the past few months attending self-criticism meetings to address their personal and professional shortcomings as part of Party chief and China’s President Hu Jintao’s “Education Campaign of Maintaining Party Members’ Advanced Nature.” But the exercise isn’t taken as seriously as it was during the Cultural Revolution, when self-criticisms could involve public humiliation or worse; these days, some cadres are finding it easier to download sample texts from websites like and submit them as their own. A few excerpts:

“Sometimes when I watch TV or read newspapers and magazines, I see corruption stories and I am really angry. But afterward, all the passion and rage drain out of me and I don’t have the appropriate feeling of pain in my body. I totally forget that I myself am a Communist Party member.”

“For a government official

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