China rule of the day

Salute every passing car on your way to and from school.

That's only in one town.  There's also this one:

Another county in Guizhou Province in southern China compelled state workers last year to help inflate the number of tourists visiting the ruins of an ancient village. Every government office was ordered to organize field trips to the site so the county could report 5,000 visitors within two months.

The involuntary visitors had to take several buses to get to a village 20 miles from the county seat. From there, they hired motorcycles to carry them another nine miles down dirt roads, the newspaper Guangzhou Daily reported.

The Guizhou Commercial News reported that some government offices were left unattended while state employees served as tourists.


Nice for Cowen to note that it's just in a couple of towns, rather than a "rule" in the entire China. NYT's China reports (their titles in particular) are often inflammatory. And, if you see how lawless Chinese roads and streets can be like (and the number of traffic accidents as a result), you'd know that some seemingly bizarre policies have some local rationales.

some government offices were left unattended while state employees served as tourists

Wish they would do that in Washington, DC.

This topic was actually quite a big meme on Chinese boards a while back:

Incidentally, ChinaSmack's a great site to get a gist of the Chinese internets. It's a bit "gossipy," so ignore the quality of the comments.

i once watched this PBD documentary on china. it showed a town where the local party man would walk around offering helpful "hints" to random people about everything and anything. it reminded me of my time in the army, when random NCOs would just walk around commenting and giving the lower enlisted shit pretty much cause they could. it struck me then that living in china seemed very much to me like being in the army, except forever. this story reinforces that. anyone ever heard the term "mandatory fun?"

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