30 July 2021

Video of the day -- China vs Taiwan

China and Taiwan have the same cultural and ethnic roots, and became separate nations only seventy years ago.  So why are they so different?

(SerpentZA lived and traveled in China for over fourteen years and speaks Mandarin well, and his channel has numerous insightful videos from his time there.)


Blogger Sixpence Notthewiser said...

His insights are very on point. I like that he understand (and speaks) the language quite well and that would give him more insight into the culture. Misguided Nationalism is a nightmare (we saw that here in America with Agolf Twiltler) and it's not different in other parts of the world.
Taiwand does seem to be another country entirely.
Oh, and service workers in China (and other countries) usually don't speak other languages because they're way too busy surviving.


30 July, 2021 07:57  
Anonymous Marc McKenzie said...

Well...I think I will definitely give this video a watch. Thank you for posting it!

Of course, I'm getting tired of the talk that the Biden Administration wants to start a new Cold War with China. That the people saying this also dismiss China's abuses in Hong Kong and also the Uyghur camps tells you all that you need to know.

30 July, 2021 08:24  
Blogger Bohemian said...

I don't have any insight into Chinese Culture even tho' I had a Maternal Grandfather raised by a Chinese Family who spoke the Language fluently and knew the Culture intimately. What I do think is that both Countries had 70 Years of very different Experiences, one under Communism that was very strict and rigid, the other under highly developed Capitalism that served them quite well and gave them the lifestyle they are not at all willing to give up and become oppressed by their Sister Nation that would lower their standard of living and limit Freedom and all they've worked so hard to achieve. That's my very Amateur Assessment of what has made them so very different even tho' Chinese being the Ethnicity, the Cultures couldn't be more different and evolving in polar opposite directions.

30 July, 2021 11:28  
Blogger Mike said...

A few times in the video he could have been talking about the US. Especially about the wealth gap.

30 July, 2021 12:40  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Sixpence: I've found that he does have a lot of insights into China, the kind you can only really have by living in a place for a long time. And he's not afraid to say what he really thinks.

My experience has been that service workers in other countries often do speak some English, because it's useful -- they're the ones who deal with a lot of tourists. China probably gets relatively few foreign visitors, though. Of course, I've mostly been to more developed countries, so more like Taiwan than like China.

Marc: It wouldn't surprise me if some of those "people" are Chinese false-flag accounts. The regime does invest in pushing the party line overseas.

Bohemian: I think the distinction between democracy and authoritarianism is important too, maybe more than the difference between capitalism and communism. Because Mao was a dictator, his bad decisions did horrendous damage, whereas a democratic leader would have been subject to more institutional checks and balances (and would have been voted out eventually). I also think the fact that Taiwan was a Japanese colony for several decades also influenced its culture.

Mike: Possibly so. SerpentZA left China a year or two ago and now lives in the US. He has a more recent video in which he says very forcefully that the US is vastly better than China and that people here don't know how good we have it. He was quite vehement on the subject. So that's the perspective of someone who has substantial experience with both.

30 July, 2021 13:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First repeatedly citing/ and dating Taiwans separation from mainland China as being only since the end of WW II ignores that Taiwan was ceded to the Japanese after 1895 war giving a period of over 125 years instead of just 70. Coupled with fact that direct mainland Chinese rule was sporadic in centuries before the Chinese have no more claim upon Taiwan then the British have on Ireland or the US on Cuba.
Just because they label themselves as the middle kingdom means nothing.
Trying to justify chinese saber rattleing with limited and questionably cherry picked historical events is a wee bit dishonest.

30 July, 2021 21:44  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

I mentioned the Japanese influence in one of the comment replies above. There was a substantial influx of population from the mainland at the end of the civil war, and that element dominated Taiwan for some time, so for them, the divergence from their mainland compatriots dates only back to then. If one dates the separation back to the beginning of the Japanese period, all the more reason to consider Taiwan a distinct nation now -- which is my point.

31 July, 2021 05:15  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Onee thing I don't see in fear mongering about chinese invasion of taiwan is that for all practical purposes it is generaly considere that Taiwan, like Japan, Israel and others, probably only need 12 to 36 hours to assemble a Nuke.
As for delivery well at worst case of limited capabilities in delivery just toss them in the straits and resulting tsunami would be devastating.
So its either a litghtening coup d main or disaster.

31 July, 2021 20:44  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

No country could "assemble a nuke" in 36 hours unless they had it almost fully assembled already, with only a few peripheral components waiting to be installed to maintain plausible deniability. I know of no hard evidence that Taiwan has a nuclear-weapons program at all, though they would be wise to initiate one. What they do have is non-nuclear long-range missiles which would enable them to target critical infrastructure throughout China, which would be almost equal as a deterrent. The ability to smash down all those fancy skyscrapers in Shanghai and blow out the Three Gorges Dam should make the Beijing gangster-regime think twice about launching an attack.

01 August, 2021 01:02  
Blogger Tommykey said...

It is the position of the PRC that the island of Taiwan is an integral part of China, but if you look at the history, Taiwan was only part of a polity governed by the mainland during the Qing Dynasty from 1683 to 1895, and then briefly from 1945 by the Nationalists before they fled the mainland in 1949. The people of Taiwan have been governing themselves for well over 70 years. At a certain point, people governing themselves in a given territory should have the right to be recognized as a sovereign nation, and that another government can no longer be able to press a claim to rule those people who do not want to be part of that government.

The PRC government does this a lot. It claims that every bit of territory controlled by the Qing Dynasty at its 18th century peak is an integral part of China forever. But why should people who live in territories conquered by the Qing (who themselves were not Chinese, but rather Jurchen from Manchuria who conquered China) be forced to live under an oppressive one party state because of this? Why should their destinies be held hostage to a snapshot in time? Empires and kingdoms expanded and contracted over time, and if every nation today that claims descent from some empire such as China, Italy or Turkey, were to claim that all lands ruled by their imperial predecessors at their greatest extent should belong to them today, then it would create a series of overlapping and irreconcilable claims.

01 August, 2021 09:00  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The idea that Israel has all the components for a nuke only awaiting final assembaly is considered a given in Middle east politics.
The Taiwanese have nuclear power, high end technology and live under constant threat so logic would dicate that they, like the Israeli's, are "incipient" nuclear powers only awaiting final construction.
Reports that Taiwan has constructed underground air bases plus eloborate and complex defense facilities. Why is it such a leap to assume they have a "pre-fab" nuke sitting in a secure facility as final defense weapon?
As far back as the late '60's it was a given that Taiwan had capabilities for this ( national HS debate subject Resolved Nuclear weapons should be controlled, and limited by international authorities ) lots research of public sources on the subject.
In following a chess dictum that a threat is often as powerful as an attack the suggestion of one by Taiwanese "insider' may be sufficient.

01 August, 2021 17:35  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

It's pretty well known that Israel has 80 to 200 nuclear missiles deployed on submarines. It wouldn't be surprising if Taiwan had a few nuclear weapons stashed away, but I've seen no hard evidence that they in fact do. Since nuclear weapons are for deterrence, not letting the potential aggressor know you have them defeats the purpose.

This is irrelevant to what the video is about.

02 August, 2021 01:27  

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