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Free from turmoil

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不折腾 (bù zhēteng): free from turmoil

“Immovable, non-complacent, free from turmoil.”
A play on “free from turmoil”: “No, turmoil!”

This phrase originates from a northeastern dialect of Mandarin and was made popular by Hu Jintao in a January 2009 speech commemorating the Communist Party:

As long as we remain immovable, as long as we do not become complacent, as long as we are free from turmoil and steadfastly push forward reforms, and steadfastly follow the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics—then we will certainly realize this great blueprint and win this grand struggle.


This is in line with Hu Jintao’s consistent efforts to promote harmony and social stability, which implies the suppression of opinions not consonant with the government line.

On January 3, 2009, a Guangzhou TV show host commented on Hu’s speech [zh], saying the government should leave ordinary people “free from turmoil.” He was sacked the next day.

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