Zhong Sheng of the People’s Daily does not represent the Voice of China

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Zhong Sheng has been very active these days on the People’s Daily accusing the U.S. of undermining the trade talks and inciting patriotism among the Chinese population to boycott the U.S.

The state media carries consecutive articles entitled “So-called victory over trade war is merely self-deception of US”, “China will never bow to any extreme pressure”, and “China never backtracks in trade talks, but the US did”, etc.

At the end of these articles, readers can find an introduction to the commentator: Zhong Sheng, a homonym in Chinese for “voice of China”, is a pen name often used by People’s Daily to express its views on foreign policy.

The People’s Daily says Zhong Sheng is the voice of China. The Chinese people are strongly opposed to this. Zhong Sheng has never been the voice of China or Chinese. He is only the voice of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) or CCP leadership, a small radical group of the CCP, who has kidnapped the 1.4 billion Chinese and whose legitimacy has been challenged by the enlightened Chinese people.

In one of his editorials, Zhong Sheng says, “Both sides have made substantial progress in better protection of intellectual property rights, expanded market access, balance of bilateral trade, and many other fields, but diverged on some agendas related to China’s core concerns.”

He makes a similar point in another article, “Every country has its bottom lines in negotiations. China will never make concessions on major issues of principle, and its core concerns must be addressed.”

Chinese people have the right to know what China’s core concerns and bottom lines are. But the CCP leadership and its negotiating team have always told the U.S to keep the trade deal contents a secret. They begged the U.S. government not to let the Chinese learn about the details of the drafted agreement.

We have learned that these core concerns include a tax reform so that businesses in China can compete on an equal footing and Chinese workers can enjoy fairer compensation with their employment, free media and open internet so that Chinese have the right to speak and communicate freely, and a cut in government approvals and management process to facilitate business activities and make people’s lives easier, etc. The U.S. side labels these a structural change.

This change is going to touch the “money” and “power” of the CCP leadership. But all actions are in the interests of the Chinese people. The CCP leadership never has the desire to lose a bit of its power usurped from the Chinese people. It has never wished to return the money stolen from the pockets of the Chinese people. And these are their core concerns and bottom lines.

Do you think who are fighting for the interests of the 1.4 billion Chinese people? Is Zhong Sheng really “the voice of China”?

Zhong Sheng says the trade talks taking place in the U.S. was kicked off “in a highly hard and sensitive atmosphere” with “the erratic weather in Washington”.

Zhong Sheng’s English is perfect and his words are just poetic as he describes the progress of the trade talks: “The past rounds of trade negotiations between China and the US were like pieces of symphonic music which contained not only vague but discernable main melody, but also off-key reverberant chords from time to time.”

According to a Reuters report, “The United States is not sincere about wanting to resume trade talks with China and has damaged the atmosphere for negotiations with its recent moves, a state media social media account said.”

“Without sincerity there was no point in coming for talks and nothing to talk about, Taoran Notes, a WeChat account run by the Economic Daily, said in a post late on Thursday that was re-posted by the ruling Communist Party’s official People’s Daily.”

Zhong Sheng went on to say: The US, labeling China with “reneging on promises”, claimed that it has seen an erosion in commitments by China, and accused the latter of backtracking on its pledges and infringing upon its major concerns.

He said, “It is totally nonsense that disregards facts, and such false accusation on China is nothing but a lie.”

Zhong Sheng seems to have lost his gentleman-like manner and come to appear in his real face as a Communist Party member.

Zhong Sheng claims in his editorial: Keeping promises is a moral principle that the Chinese nation has always adhered to; The country has always fulfilled its commitments since its accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO); As early as 2007, China had honored all of its commitments on trade in services.

He uses the word “always” twice here. The whole world can judge with their own mind whether Zhong Sheng is telling the truth or telling lies. To support his argument, Zhong Sheng went on to say:

“Even the Office of the United States Trade Representative has praised China’s performance in the WTO in many of its annual reports, saying the Chinese government has fulfilled WTO commitments.”

I almost praise Zhong Sheng of his convincing evidence. This gentleman now seems to care for the interests of the American people more than the Chinese people. I get a bit confused now which side he stands as he quotes more concrete evidence as follows:

“Washington’s reckless leap in the dark has been poured with strong opposition and condemnation from domestic society. The American Soybean Association, American Apparel & Footwear Association, the US Consumer Technology Association, the National Retail Federation and other walks of life warned that it would roil the markets, hurt the interests of consumers, workers, farmers and companies, and severely jeopardize US economy.”

“By saying the tariffs would benefit the country, the US is imagining a situation in which it is taking money from the pockets of China like a hot knife through butter. However, the reality is completely different. Due to the limited capability of US importers and retailers to ease the tariff impacts, the raised cost has to be transferred to consumers.”

“’Tariffs Hurt the Heartland’, a national campaign comprised of over 150 of America’s largest trade organizations from across retail, tech, manufacturing and agriculture, said in a recent statement that for 10 months, Americans have been paying the full cost of the trade war, not China, and the sudden increase with little notice will only punish US farmers, businesses and consumers. However, US decision-makers are still turning a deaf ear to such voices.”

In a democratic society like the United States, every individual or organization has the right to express their viewpoints and opinions. Every person has the right to speak out his or her disagreement on national issues. And that is normal.

But in China, in a society under the dictatorship of a CCP leadership, there is only one voice, the voice of Zhong Sheng. There is no freedom of speech for ordinary Chinese people. No one in the country has the right to say NO to the government.

Thus, Zhong Sheng’s argument here is a slap on his own face. He has lifted a stone to have the CCP’s toes squashed. Very sad!

Now it looks funny for Zhong Sheng to say, “It’s better for the US to conform to the trend of time, promote global peace and development, and stop playing tricks for its own profits.”

When he needs to say more, it could be nothing but routine quibbles:

Facing the difficulties, Chinese people have a saying going as “we must not let our vision be blocked by floating clouds”, while the US people have a proverb saying “every cloud has a silver lining”. When coming to the big picture of China-US ties, the public are still yearning for the light of hope amidst the cloud.

The People’s Daily speaks for the Chinese people: “The trade war with the United States will only make China stronger and will never bring the country to its knees.

Do you want to hear more? I don’t!

By Cloudy Seagail

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