Monday, October 08, 2012

Historical Irony Alert

The Wall Street Journal (yes that Wall Street Journal) reports on Maoists challenging the ruthless exploiters of the working class who run the Communist Party of the People's Republic of China.  But that's not the ironic part.  The ironic part is that to learn about the Chinese New Left Wall Street Journal chief new left ideology reporter Brian Spengele talked to someone in Utah !?!?

Mr. Bo's takedown indicates consensus among Chinese leaders to push ahead with economic liberalization despite growing social problems, said Minqi Li, an economics professor at the University of Utah, who is aligned with new leftists in calling for more-egalitarian wealth distribution in China.
 I know that Utah is a red state but I didn't imagine that referred to the little red book.

History has long been a prankster, but used to have some respect for credibility.

OK seriously the People's Republic does have an unequal income distribution.  The Communist Party ruthlessly exploits workers on land ruthlessly expropriated from peasants and I wish professor Minqi Li all the best.

2 comments:

JW Mason said...

You've got this one wrong, Robert.

Minqi Li is actually a *great* person to talk to about the Chinese left. He's a very serious Chinese Marxist who has been involved in opposition politics in China for a long time before coming to the US -- he spent several years in prison after Tiananmen, which, with due respect, is more than I suspect you have. You can find an interview with him in the New Left Review here: http://newleftreview.org/I/235/chaohua-wang-dan-wang-minqi-li-a-dialogue-on-the-future-of-china.

The University of Utah economics program is also one of the more left ones around -- it's one of only three or four places in the country that hires Marxists to teach economics at the PhD level. If that does't fit some cliches about Utah, well, reality has a funny way of not always fitting with cliches. Don't mock the WSJ for -- in this one case -- knowing better than you.

Robert said...

I wasn't mocking the WSJ. I think the news papges of the WSJ are very good. I would tend to assume that they would talk to someone who really knows a lot about the Chinese new left.


But ohhh the irony.