Daniel W. Drezner

Regarding the Great Firewall of China that Protects the Chinese Citizenry from Slander and Mischief

[Note to readers:  we are pleased to report that Dan bout with Friedman’s Disease appears to have passed quickly.  Due to difficulties with accessing the FP site, however, he has sent us his latest blog post via Gmail.  Given recent accusations, we can neither confirm nor deny that this post has been edited or altered ...

[Note to readers:  we are pleased to report that Dan bout with Friedman’s Disease appears to have passed quickly.  Due to difficulties with accessing the FP site, however, he has sent us his latest blog post via Gmail.  Given recent accusations, we can neither confirm nor deny that this post has been edited or altered in any way, which we print below without alteration.  Enjoy the read!–ed.]

I cannot emphasize how hospitable and gracious my Chinese hosts have been at this conference.  From the excellent logistics to the delicious food that I have consumed in massive quantities in a perfect demonstration of excessive American consumption, I have been made to feel like an honored guest. 

The only annoyance, not surprisingly, is accessing the Internet which is so filled with sedition and lies with respect to the People’s Republic of China.  It’s one thing to read about how ordinary Chinese are blocked from accessing Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and various Wikipedia pages out of concern than members of U.S. Congress do not use these pernicious social media to send lascivious photos to vulnerable, unsuspecting Chinese women, but it’s another thing to confront that fact in person.

The odd thing is the capricious  but nevertheless wise nature of the censorship.  I can access the Financial Times but not the Economist because the latter is written in a much more condescending, supercilious tone.  Even with baseball sites, for several days I could access Baseball Prospectus but not FanGraphs because the latter site’s Wins Above Replacement statistic relies on dodgy defensive metrics

In the end, the irony is that many English-language news-sites are accessible — it’s the social networking sites that are unavailable to encourage our students to pay attention in class unlike their decadent western counterparts

With China’s Internet entrepreneurs being forced to go Red so as to crush all treacherous curs, the Great Fireweall won’t be going away anytime soon.  Then again, from the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) perspective, in makes some sense.  The repeated outbreaks of social unrest over the past decade — or the past week — leaves the CCP with no choice but to continue its censorship policies if it wants to keep its hold on power and guide Chinese citizens towards a peaceful, harmonious world with Chinese characteristics

It is for this reason that I look forward to returning to the United States so that I might rot my midget brain even further with more blog posts about stupid, bourgeois zombie-themed news

Daniel W. Drezner is a professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and the author of Theories of International Politics and Zombies. His latest book is The Toddler in Chief. Twitter: @dandrezner

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