If you enjoy a non-stop sickly diet of Amazing Rising China and Decrepit Declining West, reading the South China Morning Post’s op-ed page is like gorging yourself on a 5lb box of chocolates.
A quasi-official ultra-nationalist commentator takes a break from scourging unpatriotic Hong Kong to spit venom at ‘the DPP government of Taiwan [which] has turned its back on being part of the Chinese nation [and] could be called a separatist regime’.
A Mainland think-tanky name-drop-Francis-Fukuyama type patiently enlightens us about how China’s ascent is unstoppable and no threat to the international order, provided the West humbly concedes the superiority of Beijing’s economic model.
And, for light relief, a ‘Belt and Road’/China-Pakistan Economic Corridor specialist foresees mutual warmth and affection blossoming between the Middle Kingdom and India on account of Bollywood displacing US movies in Mainland box offices.
Tian Feilong’s unhinged and insecure tirade about Asia’s ‘so-called beacon of democracy’ shriveling into nothing supports the impression that Beijing is on a completely different wavelength to Taiwanese, who don’t even think about unification/motherland/Chinese nation. His Hong Kong rants about common law, evil democrats and evil foreigners seem similarly removed from reality. For a wake-up, here’s Taiwan Sentinel on Beijing’s hard-headed and ruthless analysis – its only hope is to destroy Taiwan’s democracy from within through violence. (When reading this piece, insert ‘Hong Kong’ for ‘Taiwan’ to highlight similarities and differences.)
The Peking University think-tank guy pushes the far more cloying starry-eyed China-miracle ‘win-win’ story, as swallowed by optimists, the gullible and the hardcore Panda-huggers (in that order) over a couple of decades. It’s getting stale, and needs updating to allow for debt-based pretend-growth, ruination of water and soil, looming demographic crises and the counter-reformist dictatorship now steering it all.
The Bollywood article seems to propose a deal: Mainland movie audiences progress from Transformers to Hindi dance-dramas (fair enough), and in return Delhi hands the Himalayas back to PRC’s Tibet and agrees to turn India into another doormat for China so Pakistan looks less pathetic.
Another thing about the SCMP’s incessantly excessive Xi/China-boosting op-ed page – what’s with all the cogs artwork???