Monday, August 31, 2009

China's Great Wall of Silence, "The Foreigner."

There's a scene in "Annie Hall" where the Woody Allen character pauses before saying "Thank you" to a compliment paid him by Annie (Diane Keaton). The compliment was, "You're a real Jew."

The big bold Chinese characters below look like a headline. In fact they are a headline. They are the title to a recent article on a Chinese website whose subject is the "Great Wall of Silence" series.

It's a laudatory article and I am grateful and grateful also for the title which is complimentary to me personally for it reads in English, "A Respected Foreign Devil." (Pause) Thank you.


知道本杰明.哈里斯(BENJAMIN HARRIS这个人,是在两年多前的一天。我在浏览一个网站时,见到一个介绍,说有位本杰明.哈里斯,是美国检察官。这位美国检察官,知道了四十年前发生在地球另一端的一件往事,就是在1966年的红八月,在当时自称世界革命心的北京,北京师范大学女子附属中学的女校长卞仲耘,被自己的学生,活活殴打致死。几十年过去了,究竟是谁人参与打死校长?不甚了了;众多学生,无论打人者或看客,没有一个出来道歉,或证言此事


Sunday, August 30, 2009

China's Great Wall of Silence

Below are the links to two valuable American-based websites on China. The first is self-explanatory

The second is the creation of William Joseph a professor of political science at Wellesley. Professor Joseph is publishing hundreds of photographs taken by him and other members of the Committee of Concerned Asian Scholars (CCAS) in China in 1972 at the height of the Cultural Revolution. This rare visit from the outside was made possible because of CCAS's sympathies with the Maoist dictatorship.

Friday, August 28, 2009


The gate agent announced that group #4 could now begin boarding the plane and I and the other passengers shuffled forward and began meshing into one line.

An attractive blonde woman in her late 20's/early 30's entered just ahead of me. We looked at each other and she consciously gave a look of ennui.

"Holiday travel," I smiled in commiseration. "I used to wear a suit when I flew but then I'd have to take off my belt, and I'd have to take off my dress shoes because of the nails, so I'll only wear jeans and sneakers now."

"I know. I have a pierced belly-button and that sets it off."

"Oh my God, I bet." I laughed.

"I'd never thought of that," I said having never thought of that.

"Now I don't wear any jewelry. I have to take all my jewelry off, all my piercings. I'm pierced down there too," she said and motioned below her waist.

"OH MY GOD!" The thoughts appeared and popped as quickly as soap bubbles. "I never thought of that. Yeah, I guess that would set it off."

"Yeah. Stainless steel. The thing kept going off and I told them I'm pierced down there. So I had to go into a room with a lady and I had to show them."

"OHMYGOD! They had to look?!"

"Yeah, I had to get undressed and show them, 'See I told you I'm pierced.' "


I searched for something else to say to stay on topic but the line was moving, I couldn't think quickly enough and we got separated before boarding the plane and I lost her.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Senator Edward Kennedy Dies

A couple of years ago I sat down at my computer to write a post on some topic, I don't remember what. Before I typed the first word I got distracted by a thought that came out of nowhere. The thought was that Senator Ted Kennedy was getting old and I thought that I should write something on him while he was, as he was then, still healthy. And so I did.*

I am old enough to have grown up under the legacy of the Kennedy family. I still remember that early afternoon in the third grade when our homeroom teacher informed us that President Kennedy had been shot and was in "critical" condition, a condition that, upon inquiry from a classmate, I opined meant that he was going to be fine.

I remember that June day, I was on vacation with my family, when we heard on the car radio that Robert Kennedy had died after being shot the night before in Los Angeles.

And I remember Chappaquiddick.

Chappaquiddick, although indefensible, did not dampen my enthusiasm when in 1979 Senator Kennedy decided to challenge President Jimmy Carter in the Democratic primaries. For me, and others (however not enough others to make the challenge to Carter successful) Ted Kennedy was an inspirational figure at the time. Of course that had a lot to do with the patina that attached to his martyred brothers. But when he said at the Democratic convention that "the dream will never die" he stepped out of their shadow, and with his own memorable line.

It will be said that Kennedy was one of those polarizing figures who "you either loved or you hated." That is true for some people but not all. I remember reading Arthur Schlesinger's biography of RFK and his description of the funeral service. Among the attendees were Mayor Richard Daley of Chicago and Tom Hayden, founder of the radical Students for a Democratic Society. Daley was representaive of the old conservative guard of the Democratic party. Hayden wore the guerrilla's beret of the implacable anti-war activist. Schlesinger wrote that Robert Kennedy had the ability to touch figures on both political extremes because what had struck Schlesinger so powerfully at the service was that both Daley and Hayden were weeping.

So it can be said of Ted Kennedy.

His closest friend in the senate was Orrin Hatch. Hatch is from Utah, he is Mormon, he doesn't drink, he is very conservative. But many an evening, after the day's political arguments were over, would find the one in the chambers of the other just talking about life and its travails.

Although Kennedy was red meat to Republicans and the mere mention of his name was a political aphrodisiac that got wallets to open and spread wide, nearly every single piece of major legislation that bore Kennedy's name had the name of a Republican attached as a co-sponsor.

Those of us who admired his two brothers have little counter to the argument that our admiration is without sufficient basis. President Kennedy was in office only one thousand days and RFK wasn't given time enough to live even to capture the nomination. But in the career of the least promising male issue of Joseph and Rose Kennedy we may see a sign of what might have been. For this least promising son was one of the most effective legislators ever to serve in the United States Senate and his name is affixed to every major piece of legislation passed during his forty year career.

And so it may be truly said that an era has ended, that the remarkable DNA that produced Jack and Robert Kennedy has been spent with the death of Edward Moore Kennedy, the most accomplished Kennedy of them all.

*June 18, 2007

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

My first visit to the State Attorney’s Office as a defense attorney was deemed so sensitive an occasion that the security guards had been notified in advance. I made it through the first checkpoint, the metal detectors, without incident, at which time Stage Two was commenced: the security guards notified the acting head of Investigations, Bob Jordan, and his second in command, Jim Carr. Bob and Jim came down to the lobby and personally approved further invasion. I got my name tag from the reception area and proceeded to Stage Three where the A.S.A. with whom I had a scheduled meeting assumed custody of me at the door to 2North.

After our meeting the A.S.A. offered to “walk me out,” not just out of her office to the doors to 2North, but off the second floor entirely, into the elevators and out into the lobby where the chain of custody was handed back to the security guards who saw me out of the building entirely.

The state of high alert was lifted, the all-clear signal given. The next day I was told that Security had a list of undesirables to keep a watch out for and I was “on the list and he’s staying on the list.”

Thursday, August 20, 2009

A Million Drops of Blood: "State Dongfeng Farm," film (2009) by Hu Jie, translation by Ye Weiyou. Part I

( Part I )

纪录片文稿 国营东风农场

Manuscript of the Documentary<<>>

(‘Dongfeng’ means ‘east wind’)

(2009 年5月)

(May 2009)


Xie Chuanbao: At the end of 1949 our guerrilla detachment was formed. The song of guerrillas. (singing) “We are all expert marksmen,

able to kill every enemy with one bullet. We are all fast-walking forces, fearing no high mountains or deep waters; everywhere in the secret woods there are our camping sites; at the high hillocks our good class brothers are numerous. Though no food, no clothing, our enemies are to provide us…….”

影片题目: 国营东风农场

The Title of the Film: State Dongfeng Farm


Slogans on the Street: You Are Welcome to State-Run Mile Dongfeng Farm

路标: 弥勒东风农场
Road Sign: Mile Dongfeng Farm

Subtitle: It’s Time to Begin the Performance

谢传宝:(原右派分子) 现在我就根据我的回顾来谈。那个地方先是劳改队在那里,我们去了以后,劳改队就搬走掉了。1958年到东风农场,我们是叫监督生产人员。

Xie Chuanbao: ( former rightist) Now I will talk according to my review. That place was first to be taken by a group sentenced to reform through labor. After we arrived, they moved. When we got there, we were called production supervisors.

李泽衡:(原右派分子) 这个就是我二十二岁画的这个历史的真实。我们当时就是那个劳改队走了以后,在这种情况,我们把牛棚盖了。

Li Zeheng: (former rightist) This is the history-truth picture I drew at the age of 22. After the group sentenced to reform through labor moved, we built a cowshed (ox fence)

孙梓川: (原右派分子) 对待“右派”解除劳教又降为监督生产。在法律上没有这一条的。

Sun Zichuan: (former rightist) There is no such a bill in the law that the rightists already relieved of reeducation through labor are demoted to production supervisors.

吴德本:(原右派分子) 把我划成“右派”,那个时候是押送东风农场。

Wu Deben: (former rightist) I was labeled ‘rightist’ and escorted to Dongfeng Farm.

张 路:(原右派分子) 他对我说:六个月以后,回省安排工作。

Zhang Lu: (former rightist) He said to me: in six months I would be sent back to a job in my province.


Zhang Lu’s wife: After he left, we started long-time separation. (5/7, Sun.)

汪作民:(原右派分子) 搞出这么多右派你怎么处理呢?你不能把他关进监狱,更不能把他杀掉。留在机关又不放心,所以要找个地方安顿他们。所以把很多农场改造成放右派的监督生产农场。

Wang Zuomin (former rightist) How to deal with so many rightists? You should not put them into jail, let alone kill them. It’s not safe to keep them in their original offices, so here or there should be found to place them. Thus, many farms were transformed to production-supervision farms for rightists to stay.

刘加强(1990年任东风农场党委书记 、场长):当时戴上“右派”帽子和历史问题帽子的是一千人。

Liu Jiaqiang (Sectary of Party committee and the farm head in 1990) At that time labeled-rightists and historical-problem victims were one thousand people.

汪作民:(原右派分子) 劳改犯走掉,然后把“右派”送去改造。执行改造何人呢?执行改造的是在运动中不可靠的“中右”,但是不给他们说(你们是中右),你们就是下放干部。

Wang Zuomin: (former rightist) With criminals sentenced to reform through labor moved, “rightists” were sent there to reform. Who were to carry that task? They were the unreliable “mid-rightists”, but they were not told so (you are mid-rightists), just told them that they were cadres transformed to do manual labor in the countryside.


Liu Jiaqiang: They were all inside-controlled victims with various class-original or historical problems, etc. etc. , altogether 800

people, who were then formed Dongfeng Farm.

钟履鸿(原东风农场生产大队 干部):他们来叫我们留在这里当骨干,管理这些“右派”。

Zhong Luihong (former cadre of production team in Dongfeng Farm) We were told to stay here as core members to deal with

those “rightists”

汪作民:(原右派分子) 从广义上讲,也可以说以右治右,用“中右”来改造正真的“右派”。

Wang Zuomin: (former rightist) In a broad sense, it could be put ‘administer the right with the right’, i.e. to reform the real “rightists” with “mid-Rightists”

胡同增:(原右派分子) 这个是被政治暴力把这些人都集中到那个地放去。

Hu Tongzeng: (former rightist) It was the use of political violence to put those people together there.

钟履鸿:(原东风农场生产大队 干部)成立了三个大队,一大队、二大队、三大队。58年1月份开始开荒、种田。

Zhong Luihong: Three production teams were organized, Team 1, 2, and 3. In Jan. 1958, opening up wasteland and farming began.


Xie Chuanbao: Then I was appointed to brick-laying worksite to make bricks and fire/bake kiln.


Hu Tongzeng: We were said to still have citizenship but actually no civil rights we had.

Xie Chuanbao: I was originally a Youth League secretary in Mengzi county Party committee.

Hu Tongsheng: I was a doctor.


Wu Deben (former rightist): I graduated in 1951 from Law Department of Law Institute, Sichuan University.


Sun Zichuan (former rightist): I graduated from a military and political college, called Jin-Ji-Lu-Yu (Shanxi, Hebei, Shandong, Henan provinces) Military and Political College which then changed to Huabei Military & Political College.


Wu Deben (former rightist): I was appointed to Policy-Research Section of the then provincial people’s committee.


Li Zeheng (former rightist) I am a returned overseas Chinese.


Zhang Haibo (former rightist) I was in the army. ( 6/7, Mon. )

张 路:(原右派分子)我是组织部的巡视员,副处级。

Zhang Lu (former rightist): I was an inspector for the organizational department, deputy to the chief of the depart.


Wang Zuomin: During the time of labeling rightists, I was office director of a local county government.


Xie Chuanbao: (former rightis) At the end of 1957, we were told to launch a rectification movement.


Wu DebenLfoprmer rightist) People were mobilized to greatly air views( mainly in politics )


Hu Tongzeng: (former rightist) I said nothing in the movement of airing views.


Zhao Hanke (former rightist) While we were doing revolution (with CCP), whoever said anything bad about CP,

we would fight against him at the risk of our life.


Hu Tongzeng: After being mobilized once and again, I yet did not say anything.


Wu Deben: We were then responding to the Party’s call/appeal---airing views.

谢传宝:为了把整风搞的很活跃, 去参观他们大字报,漫画、诗歌。他们是贴在那些墙上的。他们是先走一步。

Xie Chuanbao: To make the rectification very brisk, we went to read their big-character posters, caricatures and poems

on the wall. They were ahead of us.


Wu Deben: On the newspapers it was the same words---blame not the speaker but be warned by his words.


Xie Chuanbao: As a Party member (communist), I did whatever the Party told me to.


Zhang Haibo: It was ok that I remain silent, but I could not tell a lie.


Wu Deben: A person should have a sense of justice.


Xie Chuanbao: At that time, there was no mention of “anti-rightist”, just mentioned rectification movement.



(Former news release explained: The Central Committee of the CPC has given the instruction in rectification movement,

the broad masses and patriotic personages are responding actively. They made much helpful criticism and suggestion to

all-level Party organizations, to party members and to cadres.)


People’s Daily: <<>’s Rectification Movement Is the Important Development of Our Socialist Democracy>>


Xie Chuanbao: In the rectification movement we were to make suggestions to leaders/authorities.

张 路:说的那么好,叫大家提意见,一提就成“右派”

Zhang Lu: How good it sounded---let all air views, but when we did, we were labeled “rightists”.


Zhang Haibo (former rightist in the Thirteenth Troup) : All labeled rightists had to be dismissed from the army.

张 路:当时我思想接受不了。

Zhang Lu: At that time I could not bear it in my mind. ( 8/7, Wed. )


Feng Yongqi: (former May 7 solder of the farm) Zheng Chun and Wang Jingru were attacked as anti-Party clique.
(Note:“May 7” was named after Mao’s May 7th Directive of 1966)


Li Zeheng: Inexplicably I became a rightist./It was quite baffling why I became a rightist.

张 路:郑、王反党集团。我就是其中一个。当时省委组织部连勤杂人员64个,就划了16个。

Zhang Lu: I was accused of one of that Zheng & Wang anti-Party clique. In the provincial organizational department there were altogether 64 people, including odd-jobmen, 16 people were labeled in that clique.


Xie Chuanbao: With a good family background (poor people belong to this group), coming from a guerilla forces, I had no worry.


Sun Zichuan: During the Anti-Rightist Movement I was in Monzicaoshuang farm, the biggest farm in Yunnan province, it belonged to the public security office of Yunnan (Southwest of China)


Hu Tongzeng: At first I did not quite believe that there should be a percentage of labeled rightists and a perecentage to be sent for reeducation through labor.


Feng Yongqi: Leader Du Wanmei was in charge of labeling rightists in Yunnan cultural circle. Fearing to be blamed for being Right deviationist because of not having accomplished the task, he took Chen Shaochun to fill up the percentage. Chen was vice president of Yunnan Art School.

张 路:就是谢富致搞的,谢富致不是吗,也是五人帮啦。等于是毛泽东的干将。

Zhang Lu: It was Xie Fuzhi’s action, Xie was one of the Gang of Five, Mao Zedong’s go-getter.


Xie Chuanbao: In three days I drew 103 caricatures.

张 路:基本上反右就把云南地下党摧垮了。

Zhang Lu: The Anti-Rightist Movement basically destroyed the former underground communists in Yunnan (before 1949).


Xie Chuanbao: The content of my drawing was that some leader cared too little for thrift, it was all the state electricity, even in the day time a light was still on. It was easy to draw a bulb with light shinning. Above the picture I wrote many words saying that the rectification going on was the best chance of developing democratic style of work.

张 路:不但是云南挨整,全国地下党都是挨整地

Zhang Lu: Not just in Yunnan, underground communists(before 1949) of the whole country were the target of attack.


Xie Chuanbao: In the period of analysis and criticism they said that all my caricatures demonstrated my deep-rooted hatred

for the Party.

张 路:等到我下去以后,她也是扫地出门。

Zhang Lu: When I was sent for reform through labor, she (his wife) was driven out in dire poverty.


Xie Chuanbao: Then I said that it was the Party branch that sent me to be an editor.

张 路:就把她赶出人事科。 右派老婆不能在人事部门,要害部门。

Zhang Lu: She (my wife) was driven out of Personnel Section as a rightist’s wife should not work in the key department.


Zhang Lu’s wife: In such a situation, not only I should not have any ideas, but also all the people dared not speak in fear of being attacked again as a result of saying even one wrong word. So it was not that I feared.

汪作民:我是1958年4 月1号,在全县的大会上宣布开除党籍,监督劳动。4月1号是愚人节。

Wang Zuomin: On April 1st of 1958 it was announced at a whole county assembly that I was expelled from the Party and to be sent

for labor under supervision. April 1st is All Fools Day.


Xie Chuanbao: It was to be criticized like that.


Wang Zuomin: Over 100 people were announced like that, including secretary of the county Party committee, vice-county magistrate, many section chiefs, and a lot of high and elementary school teachers.


Xie Chuanbao: Criticism went on for over ten days. Not permitted to explain, I was demobilized and expelled from the Party.


Hu Tongzeng: With different historical background, cultural level and education, like attracts like, we were driven to the same place,

driven by a political storm. So there were all kinds of people among the several hundreds.

刘加强(原东风农场党委书记 场长):当时13军的右派全都在我们这,13军。有一个军政治部副主任,一大批一百多人

Liu Jiaqiang: (former secretary of the Party Committee in Dongfeng Farm, farm head) Then all the rightists of the 13th armed forces

were in our place. There was a vice military director in the political department, over 100 people.

钟履鸿:(原东风农场生产大队 干部)右派这部分不喊职工。直接喊监督生产,监督生产人员。

Zhong Luihong ( former cadre of production team in Dongfeng Farm ) Rightists there were not considered staff, directly called

production supervisors.


Wang Zuomin: All the hard, dirty and tiring work was for us to do; moreover, we had to bear personal insult.


Zhao Hanke: It was not that they were able to direct intellectuals, but it was, just like Monkey King, intellectuals had a jinguzhou,

The moment you move, I will read the jinguzhou, that was it, very easy to treat the victims.( Note: jinguzhou means

the Incantation of Golden Hoop, used by the Monk in the novel Pilgrimage to the West <>to keep the Monkey King under control—inhibition.)


Subtitle: Labor . Spiritual Reform ( 9/7, Thurs.)

杨校长:(东风农场第三小学 校长) 以前的右派一般都是下放到整个农场的所谓农场边疆的边疆,比较贫苦的地方。

Headmaster Yang (former headmaster of #3 Elementary School in Dongfeng Farm) Those rightists were usually sent to the

frontier region of the whole farm, relatively poverty-stricken areas.

(李泽衡 摄影)

(photographer Li Zeheng)


Hu Tongzen: The local places’ names sounded terrible, one was “jackals pit”, i.e. wolf pit. Another was called “ hang by neck slope”


Wang Jiayou: (former worker of the farm) There were only 20 households in the farm, it was said that the wild weeds in front

of and behind the houses were enough to be used as fuel.


Hu Tongzeng: Bleak and desolate with creeping weeds which were taller than a man.


Zhao Fuyun: How to deal with such a wild desolated place? Just to make those rightists open and dig up with hoes.


Wang Jiayou: (former worker of that farm) Then the youngest rightists were 18 and 19 years old.


Xie Chuanbao: I usually behaved well in the farm, we often had appraisal through comparison.

张 路:唉约,每个礼拜都要搞一回检查交待。

Zhang Lu: Oh, every week we had to have inspection and confession.


Xie Chuanbao: We had a mid-month appraisal and a general one in a whole month.


Question: What could the best appraised/graded get?


Xie Chuanbao: Nothing. The results of the appraisal/grading were handed to group leaders as a record of your reform.


Zhong Luihong: Admonition was that you should well face up to the reform and try to return to the people’s rank earlier. ( 10/7, Fr. )


Xie Chuanbao: One way to punish the worst graded was deducting a meal or meals.


Li Zeheng: Those leaders told us: “ Open your heart to the Party and become a new person.” I still wrote those slogans.


Question: Were there any women rightists in the farm?


Wang Jiayou (former worker in the farm): Yes, many, about 30 percent.


Feng Yongqi: (former May 7th solder there) When they came in 1958, there were no cattle, man pulled plough for two years.

刘加强(原东风农场党委书记 场长):那个时候没有牛,开荒就人拉,前面五六个人拉那个犁开荒。

Liu Jiaqiang (former secretary of the Party committee in the farm, farm head) No cattle then, to open up waste land needed

five or six men to pull plough(s).


Wang Jiayou: Most of those who came were teachers.


Feng Yongqi: When asked “Hard?”, the women pulling the plough answered: “ No, not hard, not tiring.”


Wang Jiayou: The ploughs we used for farming were made of wood, no iron ones then.

汪作民:一开始就是大跃进,三面红旗。苦战,日日夜夜地干活。 都不收工在地里面待几天几夜。睡觉在地边上睡一下。

Wang Zuomin: At the beginning we got there, the ‘Great Leap Forward’ and ‘Three Red Banners’ movements started.


Xie Chuanbao: The ‘General Line’ then was to build socialism by achieving greater, faster, better and more economical results.

That was implemented on the instruction of the Party Central Committee, that was the slogan.


Zhao Hanke: In that situation many people worked, labored really as masters of the society. Most people had absolute sincerity

to the Communist Party.


Li Zeheng: There were no cattle and we had to pull ploughs.


Feng Yongqi: As a result, our shoulders were cut through pulling the plough, we wept secretly in the quilt at night. (11/7, Sat.)


Liu Jiaqiang: The intensity of labor went well beyond the human limit.

Zhao Hanke: With laboring at the risk of my life I just let people know that I was not against the Party and socialism.

刘加强:你比如说,那个砍的收的玉米,那个玉米把它砍倒,把它捆起来, 他一个人的任务,一天是十五亩。你看,你怎么完成嘛。那么,要完成这十五亩的任务,他必须在天亮以前,在天亮以前必须要完成五亩。然后要拚命的干,要干到晚上十点钟。

Liu Jiaqiang: Make an example of cutting and collecting corns, in one day to cut down and bundle 15 mu (about 1 hectare)

of corns was one person’s task. For that toil, one had to finish 5 mu by daybreak and go on with all his might till

10 o’clock in the evening.


Wu Deben: Thus, in 1958 we reaped over 300,000 jin ( over 150,000 kilograms) of corns.


Zhao Wanke: We should admit that the then farm leaders, secretaries of the Party committee well carried out policies with high standerd. In our today’s view, they were true communists who for real democracy and liberty got to Yanan (Shanxi province, a revolutionary base) For Yanan was a sacred place of democracy, right? They were the people fighting for real democracy and freedom, for building a true happy society, that was their ideal and they were that kind of people.


Sun Zichuan: In Shiping Yanzidong (a house of reeducation through labor) many people lost life, most of them died mainly of hunger.


Zhao hanke: But they left. One of them was called Wang Anguang, secretary of the Party committee, he was appointed to county Party secretary in Jianshui. He was attacked as Right-Opportunist, dragged to every county for struggle against him.


Sin Zichuan: After Yanzidong House of Reeducation through Labor was repealed, he was transferred to Volonggu Farm at
Kaiyuan (a place name) where I worked. In Aug. of 1958, that farm was also repealed and merged to Dongfeng Farm.


Zhao Hanke: Later it was the man Ma Dinggui who took Volonggu Farm and used a method crueler than slave owners did.

Xie Chuanbao: At that time we were assessed big, middle and small stomach.


Wang Yuanqing: For food, strong labor force---eight liang a day (close to 400 grams); 2nd force—six liang, the most miserable

was the weak labor force that could not finish the heavy task.


Xie Chuanbao: The so-called big stomach was equal to today’s three small bowls of rice.


Wang Zuomin: Through labor to remake one’s counter-revolutionary world-outlook, thoroughly reform oneself, be reborn

for a new person.

(右派群像 张路 摄影)

( The Whole Rightists’ Appearance, photographer: Zhang Lu )


Hu Tongzeng: But in fact it was simply a concentration camp.


Li Zeheng: In that camp we were oppressed in many ways which can not be expressed clearly in a few words.


Zhao Hanke: In those years what did we have? Except the right for labor, no other right. (12/7, Sun.)

张 路:这个是我照得,使锄头的这个是蒙自地委的。掏个窝窝,这边这个点花生, 种点肥料的.

Zhang Lu: This picture was taken by me, the one who held a hoe was working at Mengzi prefectural Party committee. To make a

nest, here for peanut and some fertilizer.


Wu Deben: From the next year we reaped more than 450,000 kilograms of grain.


Zhao Fuyun: It was so inhuman during the Great Leap Forward----beating, hanging and locking up.


Li Zeheng: Ours was named Changtangzi Production Team. People called the Party branch secretary Man Tingfu, King of Hell.


Xie Chuanbao: He always had some work for you, never let you free,


Li Zeheng: I often failed to accomplish their increasing-like-wind quota.


Xie Chuanbao: We had to get up for labor with whistle in the cold darkness.


Li Zeheng: When failed to finish the heavy task, I was tortured with carrying bitter thorn on naked back, not shouldering.


Xie Chuanbao: While shelling peanuts for sowing we had to suffer criticism-struggle meeting along with inspection and appraisal.


Li Zwwheng: They said you had to carry back the bitter thorn on naked back, without it, you would not be well reformed.


Zhao Hanke: In the farm leaders’ words: it was to split and disintegrate. (13/7, Mon.)


Wang Zuomin: The things the leaders for inspection did not want to manage ( struggle against rightists),other unqualified cadres did

not bother to do that either, so the only way was to let rightists fight against each other.


Xie Chuanbao: When hearing some rightist’s self-criticism, I would have to say he/she still had some shortcomings, etc..


Wang Zuomin: In those years people tried to behave left so they often pointed out some person’s self-criticism not incisive.


Xie Chuanbao: Everyone had to, against his will, put a big label on oneself.


Wang Zuomin: But some else would say “your self-criticism is not only not incisive, but is also going-on spreading poisonous ideas.”


Xie Chuanbao: To other people’s criticism, we had to express our attitude.


Wang Zuomin: Another person would say: “ you have no repentance.”


Xie Chuanbao: So we had to admit: “I fight against the Party and socialism, my offendence is unforgivable.”



Wang Zuomin: The first punishment rightists got was dismissal and supervised labor in the farm. How about their treatment?

With the same pay for agriculture workers, the lowest level, it was 21 yuan in Mile Area.


Zhao Fuyun: And we could not actually get the pay.


Wang Zuomin: The farm leaders themselves revised the rule of pay to so-called minus level 1 and 2, minus 1 was 18 yuan.


Xie Chuanbao: For us it was graded 14, 16, and 18 yuan.


Wang Zuomin: Only the few who were considered to behave well were able to get the lowest level 21 yuan.


Sun Zichuan: This made us vie for work points.

Zhao Fuyun: By work point, my workforce was low so I was inferior to others.


Xie Chuanbao: For those who behaved bad, were just given 14 yuan as life allowance.


Sun Zichuan: My pay was graded at 14.56 yuan.


Zhao Fuyun: That was a means, a cruel means.


Sun zichuan: Though my pay was graded at 14.56 yuan, I worked very hard.


Zhao Fuyun: Some people had no workforce, how many work points could they vie for? They were given 2 or 3 yuan for a meal.


Sun Zichuan: In the whole team I got number one in vying for work points.


Zhao Fuyun: One way to split and disintegrate was to destroy one by one---make you dogs bite one another with a full mouth hair.


Sun Zichuan: They used rightists to fight each other economically and struggle one another politically.


Zhong Luihong: (former cadre of production team) Most of them were professional, production supervisors, so they dared do nothing when lectured. Only a few had a bit spirit of revolt.


Xie Chuanbao: If one failed to accomplish his task, his meal level could be changed anytime, degraded to middle or small stomach.


Li Zeheng: When bitter thorns cut down, we treaded them into rice seeding bed with our feet. They were prickly. After the treading,

we fished for the thorns after they got rotten. In the winter paddy field, our feet had big cracks after treading the bitter thorns.

We used the big sewing needles and even needles to stitch soles (of cloth shoes) to connect our skin and flesh; for very big cracks we used flaxen thread, when linked, we went on laboring. Even with such atonement, we were not forgiven. (14/7)


Zhong Luihong: So long as they found you having a bit shortcomings, they would make you bad-lucked..


Wang Yuanqing: He (referring to Zhong Luihong ) gave the rightists a hard time without any mercy. Once, catching me eating

a few peanuts, he asked: “Wang Qingyuan, you ate the peanuts?” I showed him the food. Holding the few peanuts in his hand, he wrapped them in a newspaper and made it a big bundle. Then he took the bundle to the poor and lower-middle peasant meeting, saying that Wang Yuanqing stole peanuts. (??)


Zhao Hanke: There were usually three steps in the struggle meeting: standing out, kneeling and being beaten.


Zhong Luihong: Rightists were bound to be beaten and hung.


Zhao Hanke: What kind of people did the beating?


Wang Zuomin: The so-called activists of the rightists were incited to do the beating so as to behave themselves well.


Wang Jiayou: You were a label-removed rightist while I was rightist with label on, you were the leader with the right to beat me.

Yes, you had the right to tie, bind, hang and beat.


Wang Zuomin: Who came to blow such a wind? It was the then Secretary of the Party committee Ma Dinggui.


Liu Jiaqiang: At the criticism and struggle meeting everyone went up to do the beating for a good show. But such things

were not propagated for they were not typical.


Xie Chuanbao: The so-called activists were those ranked number A in the appraisal and accepted by others: worked hard,

obedient and introspected their crimes with deep feeling of grief.


Hu Tongzeng: In that place it retrogressed to slave society. That meant agricultural work force was bound to land, you could not leave.

Once you dared go, you would be caught back for hanging, just gave you a bit to eat for tomorrow’s labor. All fruits of our labor were for the public. With those conditions, wasn’t it a slave society, was it?

问: 他们也有没有妻子?
Question: Did they have a wife?


Wang Jiayou: Oh, some wives insisted on class struggle, and some of them divorced their husbands just because they were rightists.

Question: You were the first to get divorced?



Wang Qingyuan: I, I was the first. In April of 1958, the court posted me a notice of divorce without giving any reason. If she

(his wife) had not drawn a clear distinction, she would have been driven out in dire poverty. That was

unchangeable for she was communist. In such a case, I did not complain about her.


Li Zeheng: On Oct.1st of 1959, the day when the last emperor of Qing dynasty Aixinjueluo got decree of a pardon, my label

of rightist was removed.


Xie Chuanbao: At that time it was quite inspiring, but, with full confidence, of nearly thousand rightists only nine got their label

cast off.


Li Zeheng: Of course, were those whose label was removed really behaved well? Not exactly. It was decided according to

the need of the above.


Xie Chuanbao: Though my name was not on the list of label-removed rightists, I returned calm immediately. I made bricks very hard

always got group leader Sha’s compliment. Sha was a cadre transferred to a lower level. He said to me: “ Good, work hard, Xie Chuanbao, it is my wish, a group leader’s wish, that you create conditions to get the label removed. I replied: “OK, I must live up to the leaders’ concern with me.”


Wang Zuomin: The only hope was to get our labels cast off.


Liu Jiaqiang: ( secretary of the Party committee, farm head, in 1990)With label removed, former rightists were permitted to teach, so, from grade one in my elementary school all my teachers were former rightists.


Wang Zuomin: At least we had to get trust from the then leaders.


Xie Chuanbao: Then, I worked very hard day and night---made bricks, shelled peanuts, spoke actively at the struggle meeting in the evening, i.e., made incisive self-criticism, pleaded guilty to the people, trying to find something to say, to find my weak points: such as that my offence was too serious, but as for what a specific guilt/offence I had, I could not say. However, I had to be further intensified for the sincere words as if I had really had unforgivable guilt.


Wu Deben: Later, through all our opening up waste land, we achieved over ten thousand mu ( over 666 hectares) of cultivated area.

( 15/7, Wed.)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Politics & Justice in the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office

Katherine Fernandez-Rundle has a boyfriend or, as she corrected me once, a fiance. They had been "engaged" for four years when Rundle told me this, which was within the last two years.

The First Laddie* enjoys his role as "Powerful Man behind the Woman." If I recall correctly he's a big-time civil lawyer and deeply involved in Rundle's political career. He takes himself and his role as First Laddie very seriously.

In Rundle's first campaign against Al Milian, former prosecutor, now judge, Bronwyn Miller, accompanied Rundle and The First Laddie to some campaign event. Rundle pulled one of her Rundles, some embarrassing faux pas. When the three of them loaded back in their vehicle to drive to the next stop The First Laddie went off on Rundle. He began screaming at her for the incident. He screamed at her as Bronwyn Miller--one of Rundle's employees--sat, a captive audience, in horror in the back seat.

And as she did in meetings when Abraham Laeser insulted her in the presence of her colleagues, Katherine Fernandez-Rundle sat impassively in the front seat, not saying a word, just taking all the abuse and humiliation.

*Rundle's fiance's name is David-Something. I only met him once. Shortly after Lorna Salomon and I started dating I accompanied her to an office function, a meet and greet affair derisively called the "puppy party" by the administration for the new lawyers just hired. Lorna was signing people in and giving them name tags and I was spreading charm (When I subsequently got a $1000 "merit" bonus Lorna told me the merit was for this political charm. (I didn't get another one.)). As I was meeting and greeting I heard a man say rudely "I'm not wearing one." His tone made me quickly turn to see who was giving Lorna a hard time and on whom I could un-charm myself. I only saw the man's back as he walked away after signing in, sans name tag. "Who's that," I asked. "Kathy's fiance." "What's his problem?" "Oh the last time he was at a function we gave him the wrong name tag." "Oh for God's sake, where is he." Lorna nodded her head in the direction. He was standing off by himself in a coiled war-like stance, shifting his weight from foot to foot almost like a boxer. His presentation was so out of proportion to the offense I had imagined that I thought of this handsome middle-aged man walking around with a name tag identifying him as "Howard Pohl" and laughed out loud. "So that's the First Laddie," I said to Lorna Salomon. "David, shh."

-David Ranck

Sunday, August 09, 2009

A Million Drops of Blood: "State Dongfeng Farm, film (2009) by Hu Jie, translation by Ye Weiyou. Synopsis.

The Great Chinese film maker and human rights activist Hu Jie has produced another film that bravely chronicles another horrific aspect of China's Maoist past, the past that today's blow-dried, business-suit attired leaders seek to suppress. Here, as with "Lin Zhao", the translation is by the also brave Ye Weiyou.

State Dongfeng Farm


Time for making 2009

拍摄地点:云南省 江苏省 上海市
Place of making: Yunnan, Jiangsu provinces, the city of Shanghai


Equipment of making: pickup camera

电影片长: 104分钟

Length of the film: 104 minutes


[ The Gist of the Film/Documentary]

1957年的“反右派斗争”在云南省“取得了伟大胜利”,云南全省共揭露出右派一万零七百三十一人。他们大多数都是教师、机关干部、大学生和军官。这些人本来是响应了党的号召:帮助党整风,向党提意见。他们哪里知道这是毛泽东主席治国的圈套,结果这些帮助党的人都被套上了一顶奇怪的帽子,这个帽子的名字叫”右派” 。怎样处理这些介于革命群众与阶级敌人之间的这些右派分子呢?于是全国各地不约而同地划出荒蛮之地,腾出关押刑事犯人的农场来接受他们。
The “Anti-Rightists Struggle” in 1957“won a great victory” in Yunnan province.10,731 people were disclosed to be rightists in the whole province of Yunnan. Most of them were teachers, government functionaries, college students and officers. Those people originally responded to the Party’s call: help the Party with rectification by making criticism, comments and suggestions to the Party. How could have they known that it was Chairman Mao Zedong’s snare to run the country. As a result, all those who helped the Party were put on a strange cap with the name “rightist”. How to deal with the rightists situated between revolutionary masses and class enemies? Thus, to admit them, in the whole country, as if by prior agreement, bleak and desolate places were delimited, farms for criminals to be locked up were vacated.


In Mile county of Yunnan province a criminal-locked farm was vacated and it incorporated one thousand rightists escorted in succession. Besides, there came eight hundred supervisors who were situated between revolutionary masses and rightists but without the rightist label, they were considered middle-rightists by the above. Since then, the bleak and desolate place got a sonorous name: State Dongfeng Farm.

本片通过对东风农场右派群体以及农场管理者的采访,呈现了这些右派在阶级斗争的政治环境和艰苦的自然环境中等级森严的改造的生活,他们经历了大跃进时期的浮夸风、恶性的大炼钢铁运动,经历了人为地铲除粮食种红薯的“自然灾害” ,经历了1959至1962年的大饥饿。在肉体与心灵都得到了改造后,又经历了无产阶级文化大革命。

Through interviewing a group of rightists in Dongfeng Farm and those who managed the farm, in the film is presented rightists’ life, rigidly stratified, ideology-remolded on the tough political conditions of class struggle and in the hard natural environment. They experienced the proneness to boasting and exaggerating during the Cultural Revolution, the galloping nation-wide steel-making campaign, they also underwent the “natural disaster” as a result of purposely uprooting all grain for growing sweet potatoes. Again, they experienced the great famine from 1959-1962. After being remade in both physique and heart, they finally went through the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.

1968年东风农场作为云南省第一“五七”干校,又接收了上千名在文革中被认为有问题的干部 ——“五七战士”在这里进行劳动改造,在1970年的上山下乡运动中又迎来了1500个从上海、重庆、昆明的知识青年。


In 1968, as the first May 7 cadre school in Yunnan province,

Dongfeng Farm admitted thousand of cadres who were considered to

have some problems in the Cultural Revolution. That group of people’s

status in the farm was “May 7 fighters”. There, the fighters underwent

reform through labor. During the campaign for educated urban youth to

‘go and work in the countryside and mountain areas’ (Mao’s call) that

farm, again, welcomed 1,500 school graduates/leavers from Shanghai,

Chongqing and Kunming.

At the end of 1978, after a twenty-one year’s though-remolding/brain

washing, those rightists’ wronged cases were finally corrected. At last,

they left the farm one after another. However, there were still nearly two

hundred people who forever deserted their skeleton in that piece of land.