Popular blogger Han Han comments on the Fifty Cent Party; chinaSMACK translates:
I have a different reading of the Fifty Cent Party. First, I feel we should permit the Fifty Cent Party to exist; everyone has the right to hire someone else to speak for them and those hired have the right to speak anywhere they please. If you can beat Xiao Ming* once, and then with the money stolen off of him hire someone to curse him once, that counts as a talent. Every government has a mechanism for propagating their perspective, [so] that is excusable. But the Fifty Cent Party is the government’s mistake, before I thought they existed to guide public opinion, but it seems I was wrong, because you wouldn’t, upon seeing a crowd of people eating shit, squeeze your way in to have a bite yourself. The Fifty Cent Party is a result of the higher levels toadying to the highest level, but in the wake of the Fifty Cent Party’s rampage, many glorious and correct personages need only to open their mouths, which clearly costs nothing, and they become [referred to as] Fifty Cent Party members, which greatly hurts their enthusiasm. Originally, if you went into a hotel and booked a room for a one night stand, when you came out the next morning the whole world would call you a chicken [i.e. dick], this goes without saying. If you suddenly found the Fifty Cent Party, [… suddenly] all of your former supporters are suspicious of the Fifty Cent Party. Why do I rarely praise the government? First, I fear being called a Fifty Cent Party member; second, if you criticize the lack of freedom then praise is meaningless; third, I have already paid my taxes, and the people’s taxes pay the fees of the Fifty Cent Party, which is equivalent to me indirectly supporting the government.