Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Human Rights in China, Socialist Unity style

Andy Newman Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for the Labour Party in Chippenham has been keeping a fairly low profile on anything controversial of late, as his recent articles on the amusingly named Socialist Unity website shows. His recent missives have included mostly musings about Scottish Independence and Wiltshire's Radical history.

Oddly there has been an increase in the number of posts under the grand title of The Socialist Unity Editorial Team. One has to presume that Newman is part of this but it does give him a sort of alibi if all hell breaks loose over one of these increasingly bizarre ramblings.

At the same time his oddball mate John Wight attempts (and fails) to provide some satire for this pro-Russian, pro-Iranian and anti-Western website.

The latest such "Editorial Team" posting comes entirely without comment and is a straight cross-post from the Chinese News Agency Xinhua entitled (wait for it) China issues report on human rights in the USA.

Yes, I know. Stop laughing at the back please!

This of course is the same China which Human Rights Watch reports (excerpts:

That era saw sustained economic growth, urbanization, and China’s rise as a global power, but little progress on human rights. The government rolled back protections on the administration of justice, presided over a significant rise in social unrest, including the largest inter-ethnic incidents in decades in Tibet and Xinjiang, and expanded the power of the security apparatus.

Chinese people had no say in the selection of their new leaders, highlighting that despite the country’s three decades of rapid modernization, the government remains an authoritarian one-party system that places arbitrary curbs on freedom of expression, association, religion, prohibits independent labor unions and human rights organizations, and maintains party control over all judicial institutions. The government also censors the press, internet, and publishing industry, and enforces highly repressive policies in ethnic minority areas in Tibet, Xinjiang, and Inner Mongolia.

Lets not forget that according to Newman's published ramblings, Tibet is not allowed freedom or independence:

Tibet is too marginal to the world economy and too poor to be genuinely independent and develop a national economy and high culture of its own. In reality it can only exist as either part of China or as a bankrupt client state of Western imperialism – the fact that the figurehead for the Free Tibet campaign is the Dalai Lama, the feudal figurehead of the old slavery and barbarism is illustrative of the fact that no progressive national-popular and democratic campaign exists among the mass of the Tibetan Chinese, rather the movement is the expression of declassed intellectuals and dispossessed exiles. In the absence of a popular national dynamic to create a viable independent state, there is no prospect of self determination......

Breaking the unity of the historical Chinese state and nation will not strengthen the Chinese people in their struggle for economic and democratic progress, but only carve China up at the mercy of the imperialists.

Too poor to be free and independent of a dictatorship, Charming fellow. So much for "socialism" whatever that is after the failed Leninist experiment that murdered millions.

Meanwhile Newman and his "Editorial Team" might wish to reconsider their position as the Chinese are not that keen on Free Speech. The Human Rights Watch points out:

Government restrictions on journalists, bloggers, and an estimated 538 million internet users continued to violate domestic and international legal guarantees of freedom of press and expression. Sina Weibo, the largest of China’s social media microblog services, gives 300 million subscribers space to express opinions and discontent to an extent previously unavailable. But like all online content, Weibo is subject to strict scrutiny and manipulation by China’s censors tasked with shaping online debate in line with government policy. Alternative social media operations including Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook are blocked.

In mid-June, internet censors blocked all searches for Yili milk powder, an infant formula, after the company recalled products contaminated with mercury. Government censors excised eight pages of Southern Weekend newspaper’s coverage of the disastrous July 21-22 Beijing flood that caused widespread property damage and disrupted transportation infrastructure. On September 12, censors banned searches for the name “Jinping” amid frantic speculation as to why Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping had disappeared from public view and from mention in Chinese state media for almost two weeks. He later reappeared with no official explanation for his absence.

At least 27 Chinese journalists were serving prison terms in 2012 due to ambiguous laws on “revealing state secrets” and “inciting subversion.” Journalists are also at risk of perceived violations of censorship restrictions. Full report: Here

Socialist Unity has joined the Stop the War Coalition in its' backing for the Russian invasion of the Ukraine. Old Stalinist prejudices blind the comrades to the realities of the regimes they seek to justify. Neither China nor Russia can be in any sense shape or form be described as "socialist". Capitalism is alive and doing very well in both of them.

And Tibet would very much like to be free comrade Newman. Go to: Free Tibet


  1. Nail hit on head. To call these people "Stalinists" would be an insult to real Stalinism. They seem to be political masochists with a pathological attraction to authoritarianism for its own sake.

  2. I wouldn't take Newman and company too seriously, they are quite capable of doing that themselves. They seem to be a group of about tree or four people who haven't got over the fact that socialism of the kind they advocate means mass murder. I am afraid that many of they delusional individuals who have lacked a home since the collapse of The Communist Party and the recent implosion of the SWP have gravitated to the Labour Party. Milliband needs to address this or face some tabloid attacks about his loony left come te next election.