Tag Archives: human rights

What Might Orwell Say About Trump’s Trip to China

Author Gary Moreau, aka Avam Hale in fiction

By sheer coincidence, while President Trump and First Lady Melania were being feted by Xi Jinping and Peng Liyuan at the Forbidden City, I was re-reading George Orwell’s dystopian classic, 1984. It was written, of course, in 1949, the very year in which Mao Zedong brought the People’s Republic of China into existence.

Orwell’s book was and is considered a fantastic fiction of foresight so eerily prescient of current events that it feels close to prophetic. And, in fact, every time I looked up from my reading I felt and saw 1984 all around me.

In the end I don’t believe that Orwell was looking forward in time so much as he was looking back. There are many powerful themes in the book, from the permanence of a three-tiered society of the powerful, the want-to-be-powerful, and the 85% of every population that struggles in drudgery to serve the first two segments, to the need for continuous war to consume the inevitable over-production inherent to the post-industrial era.

The primary theme of the book, however, is the power and potential treachery of language and its inherent propensity to be deceptively stripped of meaning in the interest of mass oppression. It was a power that both Stalin and Hitler, who had dominated the news during much of Orwell’s own life, understood and cleverly manipulated to extreme and horrific effect.

Language, of course, is a human convention. It is not natural to the world like sunshine or the animals of the Savannah. We made it up to help us communicate. In so doing, however, we created the world’s most powerful oppressive weapon, a tool that can be turned on us as creator and master. Words have meaning but are not, by themselves, inherently truthful.

The Chinese understand this quite instinctively. In part this mirrors the inductive worldview in which personal obligation trumps everything, including language, and because they converse in a language that is, by its very nature, conceptual and pictographic.

Orwell’s warning, however, is of paramount application to Americans today, both because of our deductive world view which has given us political correctness, but also because the paramount tenets of our culture are not tangibles like filial piety, but intangible concepts, like honor, freedom, and liberty, that can only be understood proximately through words.

Never before, in fact, although I can’t believe Orwell truly foresaw this given that he penned this book forty years before the Internet, has Orwell’s warning been so relevant and so urgent. American culture, politics, and the economy turn on the importance of words more than ever before. Face to face communication among family and friends has declined greatly, our social institutions have steadily lost membership, our politicians communicate in 140 character (now 280 character) Tweets, and our economy is controlled by digital platforms driven by the two-dimensional language of algorithms and analytics.

The backbone of Orwell’s dystopia is the Thought Police, the role of which is “not only complete obedience to the will of the State, but complete uniformity of opinion on all subjects…” Variations of the Thought Police have been around since the beginning of social organization. The difference in Orwell’s 1984 was the existence of the “telescreen,” a variation of television that supported 24/7 bidirectional communication controlled by the government.

Today, of course, we have the Internet. On the surface it is not as organized as Orwell’s Thought Police but it is equally powerful. It draws its strength from the collective consciousness of shamers, critics, and newsfeeds and content farms intent to achieve eyeballs and to disseminate their often virulent propaganda. It harnesses the hysteria of the crowd and the spite of the anonymous.

It is ironic that most Americans would equate Orwell’s dystopia more with China than with America itself. Western media coverage of China is inevitably pre-occupied with the lack of American style elections and the alleged suppression of political dissent, despite the reality that American political correctness suppresses more dissent than the Chinese censors could ever hope to.

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United States Senators Marco Rubio and Chris Smith, both Republicans, and the Chair and Co-chair, respectively, of the Congressional Executive Commission on China, issued a letter prior to Trump’s trip, which CNN entitled, US should hold China accountable on human rights. In it they complain that China “continues to strengthen the world’s most sophisticated system of internet control and press censorship and forges ahead with what it calls ‘internet sovereignty.'” (They seem particularly concerned about China’s decision to block the WhatsApp platform in anticipation of the Communist Party Congress in October.)

This criticism was leveled, of course, in the middle of a US news barrage concerning the mass murder of American citizens by other citizens armed with military assault weapons, the long-tolerated predatory and misogynist behavior of powerful US men, the opioid epidemic, widespread civil rights abuses, travel bans, the suppression of immigration, and a growing income and wealth divide that is both categorically immoral and threatens economic and social stability.

But Orwell, in his prescience, would not have been at all surprised that this was all happening in America were he still alive. One of the lingual weapons of the oppressors in Orwell’s dystopia is blackwhite, a powerful piece of jargon with two contradictory meanings. “Applied to an opponent, it means the habit of impudently claiming that black is white, in contradiction of the plain facts…But it means also the ability to believe that black is white, and more, to know that black is white, and to forget that one has ever believed the contrary.”

The blackwhite of America’s attitude toward China, of course, is that China is the oppressor and America is the guardian of liberty, justice, and the equality of all men and women. And, of course, the reality is the reverse. While the Chinese government is indeed sensitive to the negative collective impact of social disruption in a large, diverse, and heavily populated country, the Chinese have far greater freedom than Americans are allowed by the American Thought Police who control, through political groupthink, the dissemination of knowledge and truth.

As Orwell so darkly prophesized, the control of knowledge does not require censorship in an era where all thought and expression is transparent to all. Crimestop, another Orwellian addition to the oppressors’ lexicon, is simple enough to teach to children and can be used by the collective mob not to eradicate distasteful thought, but to preclude it from ever occurring in the first place. “It means the faculty of stopping short, as though by instinct, at the threshold of any dangerous thought. It includes the power of not grasping analogies, or failing to perceive logical errors, of misunderstanding the simplest arguments if they are inimical to Ingsoc [the ruling doctrine of the Orwellian state], and of being bored or repelled by any train of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction.”

We have gone so far to promote crimestop in America, in fact, that we have created safe spaces on our campuses of higher learning so that students don’t run any risk of being forced to hear something that somehow got by the censors. Lenin himself could not have imagined such a wonderful and empowering accommodation of his ideology.

And while trigger warnings may not carry the direct impact of censorship, they can be more broadly deployed since they do not require any degree of government authority. They represent, in fact, the Thought Police writ democratic, the American mainstream stomping about in Orwell’s symbolic iron-shod boots.

And what is Orwell’s prediction for our future?

“It had long been realized that the only secure basis for oligarchy is collectivism. Wealth and privilege are most easily defended when they are possessed jointly. The so-called “abolition of private property” which took place in the middle years of the century meant, in effect, the concentration of property in far fewer hands than before; but with this difference, that the new owners were a group instead of a mass of individuals.”

But is Orwell describing the future of China or the United States? The Communist Party of China or the American political, economic, and Hollywood elite?

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Sen. Rubio and Rep. Smith Chide China?

Author Gary Moreau, aka Avam Hale in fiction

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Representative Chris Smith (R-NJ), (not shown above), released a very predictable opinion piece to CNN over the weekend. It comes on the cusp of an upcoming triple news play on Sino-US relations. On Wednesday, October 18, the 19th Communist Party of China National Congress will convene in Beijing. (See my previous post for the significance and my predictions.) On Thursday, the US Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC), of which Rubio and Smith are chair and co-chair, respectively, will issue its annual report delineating China’s alleged human rights violations and unfulfilled commitments to reform. And next month, of course, President Trump himself will travel to China for his first official visit to the Middle Kingdom. (I can’t fathom what a media circus that will be.)

Also predictably, China is sure to release its annual answer to the CECC report, detailing, in lengthy detail, America’s poor treatment of women, minorities, and children. Income inequality, climate change denial, and military aggression abroad are also likely to receive prominent treatment in the Chinese rebuttal.

Alas, you don’t have to be a Chinese apologist to accept that the Chinese do have a point in slinging right back at their American critics. The fact that American politicians still feel entitled, indeed obliged, to point out the faults, perceived or real, of the rest of the world, is perhaps the strongest evidence yet of just how out of touch America is with reality and itself at the moment.

After a week filled with salacious revelations about the exploits of Harvey Weinstein, who is most certainly not the exception to the rule in Hollywood, Trump’s threats to incinerate the people of North Korea, and Trump’s slap to the face of a country whose culture turns on face (i.e., Iran, if you have been away), Rubio and Smith apparently believe that China’s refusal to bend to US arrogance is worthy of America’s limited and painfully stretched supply of attention.

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Prominent in the Rubio/Smith piece is the accusation that “It [China] is increasingly dismissive of international norms and ‘Western’ ideas…” Say it ain’t so. How could China fail to yield to “principled American leadership,” as they call it? That we have to ask the question, once again, is ultimately both ruefully recursive and, quite frankly, beyond comprehension.

As is typical of the CECC report every year, this report will, if the Rubio/Smith letter is representative of the final product, focus on the alleged suppression of the freedom of expression in China. The Hong Kong “umbrella movement,” Tibet, religious expression, and, of course, the alleged repression of activists of all stripes, in areas from the environment, where it was the US which backed out of the Paris Climate Agreement and ceded environmental global leadership to China, to, of course, the Internet and the media, where our digital gatekeepers are being openly criticized for not censoring Russian propaganda during the 2016 election, but censoring at least one Twitter account and a domestic political ad.

Taken in total, these accusations against China calibrate just how far America’s media myopia has progressed. If hateful social media platforms, fake news, and infantile political name-calling are the standard of a free and noble media, then the Chinese should consider themselves lucky to be ruled by such alleged oppression.

Finding bogeymen in the same old places, the letter also accuses China of “Coercive enforcement of population control policies continued in violation of international standards.” It is an unfounded and logically inconceivable accusation given that China already accounts for 20% of the world’s population (China’s population has tripled in size since it’s founding in 1949.), but where the government not only guarantees, but funds, a woman’s right to control her own body. The US, on the other hand, is one of only two countries in the world (Papua New Guinea is the other) that does not provide for paid maternity leave and even now operates the most expensive, and selectively available, health care system on the planet.

This kind of moral grandstanding is what our politicians discern to be worthy of their time? This, despite the reality that our prisons, part of the largest institution of incarceration in the world, are disproportionately filled with young men of color, an entire race of Americans feels compelled to call out selective use of force by the police, a single man can buy enough military-style weaponry to mow down more people than there are US governors, all because we nonetheless guarantee multi-millionaire professional athletes the right to kneel on the job during the playing of the national anthem.

I have nothing against kneeling, mind you, but I am deeply offended by hypocrisy. And that is why, no doubt, I felt so welcome during the nine years I lived in China. I was a foreigner, for sure. But the Chinese I met never pretended to be anything that they weren’t and that courtesy to be who we are was universally extended to my family and me as well.

The closing line in the Rubio/Smith letter actually made some sense to me. “President Trump would do well to remember, even in the midst of heightened diplomacy on North Korea (author: I’m really not sure where that comment is coming from. What diplomacy?), that governments which trample on the basic rights of their own citizens are unreliable international partners.”

Well said, Senator Rubio and Representative Smith. But who, exactly, are you referring to there? Us or them? As you and your colleagues have repeatedly taught us, the choices are digital. If we’re not with them we must be against them.

I only hope that the Chairman Xi Jinping and the leaders in Beijing don’t share that perspective.

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You may contact the author at gary@gmoreau.com
Visit my personal blog at www.gmoreau.com

Here’s what legendary Kirkus Reviews has to say about the author’s new book: “More than a guidebook for managers, this is a manifesto for an intellectually deeper – and happier – world of business.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
click here

The latest in the Understanding Series is now available.
click here

Business is Business

By Western media accounts the G20 meeting that convened in Hangzhou, China on Sunday got off to a rocky start. There was no red carpet waiting for President Obama upon his arrival aboard Air Force One. In fact, there weren’t even any stairs, forcing staffers to scramble for an alternative route for the president to disembark.

And it didn’t stop there. His National Security Advisor got into a verbal tussle with one of the Chinese officials coordinating the arrival, and there was a subsequent argument about how many reporters could accompany Presidents Obama and Xi on their evening stroll.

All of which was generally portrayed as premeditated ‘snubs’ indicative of just how much friction there is between the US and China at the moment. One writer suggested that these snafus were proof positive of just how different the two countries ‘values’ are – implying, of course, that the West has noble values and China does not.

One Chinese official on the tarmac went so far as to proclaim, “This is our country,” noting that they should be allowed to establish security protocols, including where to put the press. And that does, in fact, reflect the strong current of nationalism among the Chinese still sensitive to the Century of Humiliation, when foreign powers routinely ravaged China, took its land, and generally tried to tell it what to do.

The British even went to war in 1839 to stop the Qing dynasty’s efforts to address the growing opium addiction among its people, largely fueled by British traders smuggling the opium in from India in exchange for silver. Britain, it should be noted, had already made opium illegal within its own borders. After capturing Canton, the modern day Guangzhou, and Nanjing, then called Nanking, the British forced the Chinese to cede the island of Hong Kong to British rule, and to open up four additional cities, including Shanghai, to British traders.

Now boasting the number two economy in the world and having lifted 300 million people out of poverty in one generation, the Chinese understandably believe they deserve a little respect, which the US ‘pivot to Asia’ and the harsh rhetoric of the US presidential election concerning foreign trade, would seem to be denying them.

Having said all of that, I don’t personally believe that any of this represents an orchestrated attempt by the Chinese to snub the Americans. “S_it happens,” as the old saying goes, particularly when there are so many egos involved and the Chinese want desperately to see their first G20 meeting come off without a security hitch.

But I really think Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba, unwittingly provided the best explanation of why US/Chinese relations appear to be so strained at the moment. Speaking to a Western reporter in fluent English (Before starting Alibaba Ma worked as an interpreter to foreign visitors to Hangzhou.), Ma noted that in his 52 years he had witnessed several American presidential election cycles and without exception the negative rhetoric against China escalated during them.

Ma went on to say, however, that he thought things would return to a more civilized tone after the elections, offering the explanation that, “business is business.”

That very phrase is offered with epidemic frequency among the Chinese and perhaps says more about the Chinese worldview than any other combination of three words. And, I submit, why the US and China just don’t seem to understand each other.

It’s a powerful phrase in its simplicity, invoking the image of balance so central to the Chinese worldview. Business is business; nothing more, nothing less. It stands alone and apart. Which is why Chinese negotiators don’t seek the hallowed Western middle ground of ‘win-win’ in a negotiation. They seek to extract every last ounce of flesh they can.

The other side of that perspective is that, as the Godfather might say, “It’s business; nothing personal.” The Chinese have a decidedly more ‘devil may care’ attitude about wealth and success than Americans do. They don’t, in other words, personalize wealth and success to the same degree Westerners often do. They are more inclined to see good luck where Americans see a noble commitment to hard work and business savvy.

Which is, to say, the Chinese compartmentalize to a far greater degree than most Americans. We are prone to wrap everything up into one big ball of values, principles, and ideals.

President Xi Jinping very much wants to keep the G20 meetings focused on global trade and the world economy. He doesn’t want to see the talks sidetracked by other issues that may be more contentious and subject to individual political perspective.

When President Obama met privately with Xi before the formal start of the G20 talks, however, it was reported that the American president wanted to talk about human rights and the South China Sea, two areas where the two leaders will surely find little common ground.

Compartmentalization is the more pragmatic approach to resolving disputes. There is the chance, however, that broader ideals may be compromised, although we are hardly the shining city on the hill when it comes to human rights, and the benefit to everyday Americans of the pivot to Asia has yet to be shown.

And, of course, the Chinese official is right – it is their country.

Contact: You may reach the author at understandingchina@yahoo.com

The Narrative on Xi-Obama

In business and politics there is no longer truth and lies. There is only narrative. The narrative is all that matters.

The narrative is the truth wrapped in context – like a beef pattie in a bun. That makes it a hamburger.

While I assure you that I mean nothing political about the example I’ve chosen but you can’t miss the point on this one.

A former president of the United States once declared, with obvious sincerity, “I did not have sex with that woman.”   What he forgot was the context, being that he does not consider oral sex to be sex as the term is commonly understood. Did he lie? Not in that context. Did he tell the truth? Not in the context others would have considered understandable applied to the declaration.

Both sides won.

It will soon be earnings season again in Corporate America. And I can assure you that any company that comes up short of expectations will have a narrative.   The narrative won’t change the facts, but it will attempt to change the context (e.g. strong dollar, weakness in China, etc., etc.) and that, in a nutshell, will change the narrative.

I learned about narrative at a very young age. “Gary, did you do this?” “Yes, but my brother made me do it or he would beat me up.”

OK, so what was the narrative that came out of this week’s visit of President Xi Jinping to the United States, his first official state visit since he took office in 2012? The narrative on both sides of the Pacific was the same, “We won!”

In a previous post I correctly predicted that commercial cyber hacking would be on the US agenda but was a non-starter. According to President Obama, I was wrong. In a Reuters report reprinted by CNBC President Obama triumphantly proclaimed “The United States government does not engage in cyber economic espionage for commercial gain, and today I can announce that our two countries have reached a common understanding on a way forward.”

But what is the context? Since moving backward is not an option in a case like this, that truth could have been proclaimed months ago with a high degree of certainty. But what does forward look like? Forward to where? And how will we know when we’re there.

President Xi responded in kind. “Confrontation and friction are not the right choice for both sides.” Fair enough. But when are they? And how far will each side go to avoid them?

As is often the case these days, President Obama wanted to talk issues: human rights, the South China Sea, etc. And President Xi wanted to put it all in context. To paraphrase, “We are a developing country with a different history and different culture.”

Victory all around.

The one area that there was general factual and contextual agreement on – a common narrative – was climate change. President Xi officially announced that a national carbon cap-and-trade system would be in place in China in 2017. The US, unfortunately, has yet to meet that goal.

This was commonly viewed by the Western media as a victory for President Obama. I beg to differ. While it certainly wasn’t a loss for President Obama, the narrative victory will ultimately go to President Xi. After all, China is already the biggest carbon-emitter in the world. And in a recent poll that the leadership in China is obviously taking very seriously, the Chinese public have said clearly that corruption, pollution, and income inequality are their three biggest concerns. It is easy for Westerners to think of global climate change and pollution as conceptual issues. But for we who live it every day it’s much more on our minds than your own, I’m sure. (When was the last time you wore a breathing mask to go to the grocery store?)

All told, I believe President Xi got very high marks for his visit to the US here at home in China. He was greeted in Seattle by the Governor of the State of Washington and in Washington D.C. by Vice President Joe Biden, but he took it all in stride. The Pope was in the country, to be fair.

But here’s the context. The Communists took over in 1949. President Nixon was the first US President to visit the People’s Republic of China in 1972, 23 years later. The U.N. General Assembly seat previously held by Taiwan was only given to the PRC in 1971.

And here they are, less than 50 years later, the second largest economy in the world, having brought 300 million people out of poverty in one generation, and doing $550 billion in bilateral trade with the country of the century, the US.

As the narrative goes, all sides can claim victory. Within the context, however, I believe President Xi Jinping will receive a hero’s welcome in the weeks ahead. His narrative never changed, he never backed down on the issue of the South China Sea, and he was treated with a respect that was acceptable. (The narrative of the 2016 presidential race was put on hold for the most part – at least as far as China. After all, whomever wins will have to deal with this President of China for his or her entire term(s))

No one in China pretends that China is yet the US. They know, however, they are gaining fast and Xi’s reception and performance this past week reinforced that.

For him, I think, a successful week.

Gary Moreau's latest fictional novel written under the pen name of Avam Hale.
Gary Moreau’s latest fictional novel written under the pen name of Avam Hale.

Copyright © 2015 Gary Moreau

Note:  The views expressed in this post are strictly those of the writer acting in a personal capacity.

You may contact the author at glassmakerinchina@gmail.com

Human Rights: The US & China Trade Reports

On June 25, 2015 the US State Department released its annual report on human rights around the world and on June 26 the Information Office of the State Council (China), as always, released its own report, entitled, “Human Rights Record of the United States in 2014.”

Both reports are inevitably critical. And given the U.S.’s recent record in race relations, police shootings, clandestine data gathering, and racially-motivated mass murders, one has to wonder why the U.S. government would set itself up for such political criticism. The prudent course, it seems to me, would have been to simply state, ‘We have work to do.’

But it didn’t. And it was easy to visualize the devilish grin on the face of the Chinese authors as they shot with abandon at the side of the proverbial barn that was the recent record on human rights in America.

There was a time when this – one assumes material – taxpayer expense seemed, if not productive, at least logical. The U.S., in many ways, stood on some pretty high moral ground, and in the wake of guys like Stalin and Hitler, foreign human rights clearly had a direct link to America’s peace and prosperity.

Wars between countries, however, have become relatively rare. Wars are now fought on ideology and ideologists have never cared much for what other ideologists think about the morality of their ideology. Why waste taxpayer money?

Momentum, however, is the most powerful force on Earth. Those who have been paid to write these reports have every reason to see them continue. And certainly no politician wants to risk being on the wrong side of human rights activism, even if there is some hypocrisy involved.

So they get written.

As you read both reports, two over-arching themes emerge that are a result of fundamentally different worldviews. The first is the socialist emphasis on outcome versus the strict literalism of opportunity that is at the heart of the American political and social systems. The second is an extension of the first – collectivism versus individualism.

Much of the American critique, of course, focuses on China’s political processes and the treatment of those who speak out against them. And, in theory, the Americans build a case that will resonate with members of Congress and the political elite.

The Chinese, on the other hand, essentially quote Yogi Berra, who once noted, “In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.” The Chinese report quite astutely notes that, “Money is a deciding factor in American politics, and US citizens’ political rights were not properly protected.” Despite the highest level of midterm election spending in history, the report goes on, voter turnout was at its lowest level since WWII and there is no shortage of scholars to quote on the fact that ordinary Americans increasingly feel that their supposedly democratic government no longer reflects their interests.

While the U.S. points an accusatory finger at political censorship and the detention of dissidents, the Chinese report notes that the UN itself, in 2014, “…slammed the US for violating the rights of ethnic minorities, indigenous people, immigrants and other minority groups. It criticized the fact that racial and ethnic minorities continued to be disproportionately arrested, incarcerated and subject to harsher sentences.” It’s an irrefutable point, in the end, and even President Obama, in reference to the racial atrocities that occurred in South Carolina recently, acknowledges that the US has made an indefensible lack of progress in racial relations.

And guns, of course, make their way into the conversation. The Chinese report, as you would expect, notes the shooting of Michael Brown and other cases of the police’s (which to the Chinese are part and parcel of the state) use of deadly force against minority citizens.   But in a country where only the military has weapons, and I have yet to see a single firearm on sale or in the hands of a lower level policeman or ordinary citizen, the Chinese report notes, “…the use of firearms in the US was behind 69 percent of murders, while for robberies the figure was 40 percent, and for aggravated assaults, 21.6 percent.” (It cites CNN for the statistics.)

Mao Zedong, to his credit, correctly noted that, “Women hold up half of the sky,” so the rights of women have long been a source of national pride to the Chinese. This year’s report noted that in the US, “Each year, 2.1 million American women on average were assaulted by men. Three females were murdered by their partner each day, and four females died each day as a result of abuse. In the US military, reports of female soldiers getting harassed were on the rise, and more faced repercussions for reporting assaults.”

This year the Chinese could also point to interrogation techniques employed by the CIA, including ‘rectal rehydration’, the PRISM data mining program unveiled by Edward Snowden, the interception of phone conversations by 35 foreign leaders, and the stealing of encrypted information from foreign governments.

Then there were the drone attacks that killed both militants and civilians, according to the report, and the execution of Ramiro Hernandez Llanas, a Mexican citizen, without giving him access to consular assistance, claim the authors, a violation of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.

In short, plenty of legitimate accusations to go around. In the end the real difference between the two reports is one of perspective. American ideology is decidedly individualistic and absolute: the right to vote, the right to free speech, the right to bear arms, etc. China’s ideology, on the other hand, is influenced far more by the collectivism of its historical agrarian culture.

The rights of the group versus the rights of the individual. In fairness, of course, Westerners believe that protecting the rights of the individual ultimately secures the best possible outcome for the group. And the Chinese are decidedly ‘hands-off’ when it comes to personal rights that don’t interfere with the effective functioning of the state.

Once again, it all comes down to balance. The Chinese are correct, I think, in stating that the right to development is one of the most important rights of all, a right the US has been reluctant to codify due, one assumes, to its potential for abuse. Prosperity without basic intellectual and personal freedoms, on the other hand, would be a decidedly hollow achievement.

I think Abraham Maslow, who gave us the Human Hierarchy of Needs, ultimately said it best. Maslow noted that everything else is irrelevant until you have food in your stomach, water to drink, and a relatively safe place to lay your head. The ultimate need of all humanity, however, is the need for self-actualization, the truly personal goal of realizing one’s full potential in life.

Human are largely defined by your worldview.  China and the US come at the issue from opposite directions.  Can either really stand in judgment of the other?
Human rights are largely defined by your worldview. China and the US come at the issue from opposite directions. Can either really stand in judgment of the other?

View the author’s literary work written under the pen name of Avam Hale. Both books are available at Amazon and most major online retailers in both electronic and print formats.

Copyright © 2015 Glassmaker in China

Notice:  The views expressed in this post are strictly those of the writer acting in a personal capacity.  They are not in any way endorsed or sanctioned by his employer or any other individual with which he may be personally or professionally affiliated.