January 7, 2006


Homicide Bomber Kills Four in Chinese Court (Fox News, January 07, 2006)

The bomber was identified as Qian Wenzhao, 62, a farmer who Xinhua said was angry over a ruling in a property dispute involving the house of his late son and daughter-in-law.

Qian forced his way into a meeting room on the courthouse's fourth floor and ignited explosives, Xinhua said.

"Police believe it was Qian's resentment against the court verdict that had led to the blast," the report said.

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 7, 2006 8:05 AM

Are you going to read every crime story from China as a sign of their imminent collapse? We had a woman off her lawyer and a bystander in the Hennepin County court building last year, and noone stopped buying Minneapolis municipal bonds over it.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at January 7, 2006 10:48 AM

You going to buy Chinese futures in line with your bright predictions about the coming glory of secular Europe?

Posted by: oj at January 7, 2006 10:55 AM

there were over 70,000 riots in the prc last year, and recently the government felt compelled to gun down 70 or so protesters. if you think that bespeaks of an investment opportunity, then go for it.

Posted by: toe at January 7, 2006 11:32 AM

Whether Chinese bonds are credit worthy, or not, has nothing to do with one murder case. The inferences you draw from anecdotal stories are ridiculous.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at January 7, 2006 12:22 PM

The point is that in totalitarian and authoritarian states incidents such as those OJ posts represent a HUGE problem, far beyond what they would mean in a liberal democracy.

Authoritarian/totalitarian regimes look strong but are in fact brittle. The first little crack leads quickly to the whole edifice coming down.

Posted by: Pepys at January 7, 2006 1:55 PM

OJ's been predicting the demise of the Iranian regime for three years now. What you guys don't realize is that authoritarianism is the norm in the world and in human history.

China is in transition, we don't know how much authoritarianism will be surrendered, if any, but it is the kind of turmoil that comes with rapid growth.

For an outsider with OJ's attitude to watch the labor riots, and the sweat-shop fires that killed young women in the early part of the 20th century in America, he'd have to conclude that the US was on the verge of collapse and the last place he'd want to invest money.

China's emergence will be a rocky road, but it will probably be one of the best investment opportunities in the 21st century.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at January 7, 2006 2:46 PM


Three years is an eye blink in history. Iran and China can totter on for a while, but neither can last.

America was a democracy and the sweatshops were popular, just as we're perfectly happy to put Chinese in them now we werre happy to put immigrants in them then. Why would the Chinese be happy to put themselves in sweatshops?

Posted by: oj at January 7, 2006 3:09 PM


Because it's still better than the farm?

Posted by: Mike Earl at January 7, 2006 5:07 PM

Which creates a second pool of unrest.

Posted by: oj at January 7, 2006 5:14 PM

The kinds of riots they are seeing are no threat to the regime. They are the kinds of riots that have happened throughout the history of autocratic regimes. They are disorganized, fueled by hunger & resentment, they boil over into violence and are quickly crushed.

The Chinese peasant that gets a sweatshop job in the city considers himself lucky. At least he's not working in a coal mine. Many of these "sweatshops" are modern, efficient, state of the art factories set up by multinational corporations, the working conditions are by far superior to the conditions that Americans experienced in the late 19th-early 20th centuries. They're not being worked to death, they're just being paid peanuts.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at January 7, 2006 6:53 PM

Yup, remember when the Russians started suicide bombing Bolshevik courtrooms?

Posted by: oj at January 7, 2006 7:28 PM

Mr. Judd;

Actually, I do. The Nihilists were the only group that Lenin truly feared, as they were willing to undertake obviously suicidal missions of assassination and bombing.

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at January 7, 2006 11:40 PM

There are plenty of near-sure-thing investment opportunities in China and Europe, regardless of whether the PRC holds together or not, or whether Europe's future is Islamic or not.

Failure or change at the top levels of society need not mean that basic services are interrupted at the foundation of society.

If anyone expects total and prolonged anarchy in China and/or Europe, then ignore the above.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at January 7, 2006 11:57 PM

Investment opportunities are easy to find everywhere--people lose their shirts because it's harder to figure out when to bail. Investing in economies in societies on the verge of unrest is fine for folks with enough money to piss away.

Posted by: oj at January 8, 2006 9:11 AM

if any western companies have actually made money on their prc investments i haven't heard about it. i have heard of several large corporations pulling out and writing off the money they spent there.

Posted by: toe at January 8, 2006 1:58 PM

OJ and toe have it right. The problem isn't making money in China, which is easy, it's keeping the money. The companies that toe describes aren't leaving because they couldn't make money but because it kept getting stolen by the ChiComs and their parasites.

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at January 8, 2006 3:11 PM