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  1. Xi Jinping signals intent to remain in power by revealing politburo with no successor https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/oct/25/xi-jinping-signals-intent-power-successor-politburo-china China’s president unveils his all-male cabinet, but crucially no member is young enough to take the reins from Xi at the end of his second term Xi Jinping has kicked off his second term as leader of the world’s second largest economy, vowing to spearhead the “great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation” and signalling his intent to tower over Chinese politics for decades to come. At just before noon on Wednesday, Xi unveiled the new line-up of China’s top ruling council – the Communist party’s politburo standing committee – leading six besuited comrades out into a blaze of camera flashes in the Great Hall of the People. “Here, on behalf of the newly elected central leadership, I wish to express our heartfelt thanks to all other members of the party for the trust they have placed in us. We will work diligently to meet our duty, fulfil our mission and be worthy of their trust,” Xi said in a 21-minute address that marks the formal start of his second term. Crucially, the all-male group contained no potential successor, since none of its five new members – all aged between 60 and 67 – is young enough to take the reins from Xi after the end of his second term, in 2022, and to then rule for the customary decade. Such is the secrecy that cloaks Chinese politics that the identities of the standing committee’s incoming members were known only as Xi escorted them out onto a scarlet-carpeted stage. Joining Xi and premier Li Keqiang on the elite committee are: Li Zhanshu, 67, Han Zheng, 63, Zhao Leji, 60, Wang Yang, 62 and Wang Huning, 62. “I still can’t get over the fact how the world’s second largest economy, which is declaring this new role of global leadership, is nearly as opaque as the North Korean political system,” said Jude Blanchette, an expert in Chinese politics from New York’s Conference Board research group. “I just find that absolutely striking and in a way almost unacceptable for a system that wants to play such a fundamental role in guiding and shaping the 21st century.” China’s propaganda apparatus has touted this week’s political show as an example of openness and transparency. However, a number of major western news organisations whose coverage of Xi’s rule has irked Beijing were excluded from Wednesday’s event without explanation including the BBC, the Financial Times, the Economist, the New York Times and the Guardian. In his address, Xi outlined his vision for what he called China’s “new era”, an era in which an emboldened and purified Communist party would play an even more prominent role in returning the country to its former glories. “It is my conviction that the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation will become a reality,” he said, urging his party to become “the backbone of our nation.” “We should never entertain the idea of taking a breather or halting our steps. Instead, we must continue to rid ourselves of any virus that erodes the party’s fabric, make great efforts to foster a healthy political environment of integrity and generate waves of positive energy throughout our party which can build into a mighty nationwide force driving China’s development and progress.” Xi also pledged “a resolute push” to eradicate poverty, to “open China still wider to the world” and hinted at the more assertive and muscular role Beijing is expected to seek on the world stage in the years ahead. “With confidence and pride the Chinese people will be steadfast in upholding our country’s sovereignty, security and development interests,” he said. The unveiling of China’s new ruling council came one day after the end of the 19th party congress, a week-long political summit at which Xi established himself as the country’s most dominant leader since its revolutionary founder Mao Zedong. On Tuesday, Xi’s eponymous political philosophy was enshrined in the party’s constitution alongside those of Mao and Deng Xiaoping, the architect of China’s economic opening to the world. Experts say that momentous and highly symbolic achievement puts Xi in a virtually unassailable position at the pinnacle of the 89 million member organisation. Having failed to anoint a successor, he is now likely to be calling the shots in Chinese politics well into the 2030s. With Xi now entering his second, although perhaps no longer final five-year term, thoughts are turning to what the next stage of the Xi era might hold. Supporters claim that having used a ferocious anti-corruption campaign to purge rivals and consolidate his grip over the party during his first five-year term, Xi will now turn his mind to comprehensive reforms of China’s economy. “I think the real reform just began,” said Wang Wen, a pro-establishment scholar from a thinktank linked to Renmin University. Wang argued that Xi would enter his second term with “much more authority” and a greater ability to implement his blueprint for China. Such optimism was echoed in China’s party-run media on Wednesday as cadres lined up to heap praise on their all-powerful leader. “We firmly believe that if people all over the country roll up their sleeves under the guidance of Xi’s Thought … we will move steadily into the future with the irresistible force of a high-speed train,” Chen Meifang, a Shanghai railway official, was quoted astelling the Beijing Daily. However, such hopefulness is widely disputed. Blanchette said he expected to see a “super-sized version” of Xi’s first-term policies in his second stint, as China’s leader pursued what he saw as his “program of Chinese greatness”. That would mean accelerating efforts to build a modern, battle-ready military that could begin to push the United States further and further out of what China saw as its Pacific backyard; an increasingly assertive foreign policy in regions such as the South and East China seas; and continued efforts to promote a hi-tech economic revolution by championing huge companies that were either controlled or heavily aligned with the state. It would also mean that the Communist party – and the Communist party only – would continue to lay down the law, in all aspects of Chinese society. In an editorial celebrating the start of Xi’s “new era” on Wednesday, the People’s Daily, the party’s mouthpiece, argued: “History has shown and will continue to show that without the leadership of the Chinese Communist party, the idea of national rejuvenation is a fantasy.” “We should hunker in for a long winter of tight political control,” Blanchette predicted. We should hunker in for a long winter of tight political control Jude Blanchette Elizabeth Economy, the director for Asia studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, said she saw this week’s congress “as affirmation of the direction in which Xi has already been moving the party as opposed to a point at which now we are going to see the real Xi Jinping and his real reforms emerge”. She added: “I think what we are going to see is an intensification along the same lines.” Economy balked at the suggestion that Xi – whose first term has witnessed an unusually fierce crackdown on party opponents and human rights – might suddenly emerge as a political reformer. “I don’t think a crypto-liberal would do what he has been doing over the past five years. I don’t think a crypto-liberal lets Liu Xiaobo die in jail, and the arrests and the intensification of the attacks on the [human rights] lawyers. That is not a crypto-liberal,” she said. Blanchette said Xi had shown a remarkable “mastery of the political system” in China during his first term in power: “The second question though is does that mean he has an omniscience or an omnipotence to deal with all the significant challenges that China is facing? “There is a huge list of challenges that Xi Jinping has to deal with,” he added, pointing to a gradually slowing economy, a looming debt crisis and the possibility of a nuclear conflagration on its doorstep. “He now has the power to do it. But how he deals with these challenges will be one of the most important indicators of whether or not he is able to stay on for the term that he feels he deserves.” Additional reporting by Wang Zhen. What 'Xi Jinping Thought' Stands For https://www.forbes.com/sites/salvatorebabones/2017/10/22/what-does-xi-jinping-thought-mean-and-how-does-it-compare-to-america-first/#2bfee5ab3262 Xi Jinping is universally regarded as China's most powerful leader since Deng Xiaoping, and perhaps since Mao Zedong. Both Deng and Mao left their marks in the charter of the Communist Party of China, and the rumor is that Xi will be their first successor to do the same. Mao's "mass line" and Deng's "seeking truth from facts" have become official tenets of Communist Party dogma. Xi's "socialism with Chinese characteristics for a new era" may soon join these august concepts as official truth. But just what does "Xi Jinping Thought" really consist of? To answer that question, it helps to compare Xi's governing principles to those of the four preceding "paramount leaders" of China's Communist Party. Xi versus Mao Xi Jinping is most often compared to Mao Zedong, China's revolutionary leader, red emperor and communist theologian. Mao's political maxims were collected in the Little Red Book once read by leftist college students and Latin American guerillas. Mao Zedong thought is not all that bad, if you happen to be planning a people's revolution to overthrow your government. Unlike Lenin and most European Marxists, Mao taught that revolutions had to come from below. And unlike most revolutionaries, he still fought to overthrow the government even when he was the government. The infamous Cultural Revolution that rocked Chinese society from 1966-1976 was the result. Xi is no revolutionary, and he is certainly no Mao. Xi'sChinese Dream is a "moderately prosperous society," not a communist utopia. Xi does talk a lot about "national rejuvenation," but that's really just a way to avoid using the Western word for what he really means: renaissance. Xi's Chinese renaissance is all about China's space program, high speed rail network and high technology parks. But a real Chinese renaissance requires the reversal of China's long-term brain drain to the United States and other English-speaking countries. The problem? Most Chinese scientists are unwilling to give up their tenured positions overseas to take a chance on a permanent return to China. Barring a reversal of epic proportions, in 2021 Xi will preside over the centenary of the Chinese Communist Party. That will be as good a time as any to finally lay Mao Zedong Thought to rest for good. If Xi has his way, they may just take the opportunity to bury Mao along with it. He's been waiting long enough. Xi versus Deng Soon after the death of Mao, his long-time frenemy Deng Xiaoping put paid to the Cultural Revolution and started China on the path to opening and reform that it has followed for the last 40 years. Famous for saying that it was OK for some people to get rich before others, Deng was repeatedly condemned by Mao as a "capitalist roader" -- which, as soon as Mao died, is exactly what he turned out to be. To facilitate his economic reform agenda, Deng urged that China should "keep a low profile" in international affairs, biding its time while building its strength. Xi'sstrive for achievement strategy couldn't be more different. In his landmark Communist Party Congress speech, Xi pledged that China would have a "world class" military by 2050, in line with his policy of relentless maritime expansion in the South China Sea. Xi has departed radically from Deng's advice on foreign policy, but what Xi shares with Deng is a staunchly conservative preference for order over chaos. Deng ruthlessly suppressed the Tiananmen Square democracy movement in order to preserve the rule of the Communist Party. Xi has much more subtly turned the screws on political dissent using the more discriminating but perhaps more effective tools of online surveillanceand selective imprisonment. As the ever-quotable Deng said himself, "it doesn't matter whether the cat is black or white, as long as it catches mice." Xi versus Jiang Deng Xiaoing's successor Jiang Zemin is perhaps best remembered for the fact that everything done under his leadership was done "with Chinese characteristics." Deng may have coined the phrase "socialism with Chinese characteristics" to justify his introduction of the market into China's planned economy, but under Jiangthe phrase became a standing joke. Jiang Zemin codified these Chinese characteristics into the "Three Represents": the idea that in addition to the poor, the Communist Party of China would also represent China's business and cultural elites. Under Xi, this has evolved into the Two Represents, and if China's new rich get their way it may soon degenerate back into a novel kind of One Represent. Xi versus Hu Hu Jintao's major contribution to the intellectual life of the Communist Party was to bring Confucius back into the fold. Long prescribed under Mao as the reactionary idol of the pre-revolutionary patriarchy, today Confucius is back in China, with no small thanks to Hu, who rehabilitated Confucian thought, reopened Confucian temples, and chartered the Confucius Institutes to become China's cultural ambassadors to the world. Hu's trademark slogan was the "harmonious society" -- i.e., trust the government and don't complain and everyone can live in harmony. No word on what thenotoriously cranky sage, who got himself successively kicked out of ten different countries for criticizing their poor leadership, might have thought of this. Hu later extended the harmonious society to the harmonious world (i.e., trust China and don't complain and the world can live in harmony). With his One Belt, One Road expansionism and South China Sea island building, Xi seems keen to continue Hu's expansive foreign policy program, only with even less emphasis on the "harmonious" part of the equation. "Party First" Xi Jinping Thought, in a nutshell, seems to boil down to something resembling "America First, with Chinese Characteristics." By all accounts, Xi and U.S. President Donald Trump got along surprisingly well at their first meeting in April, perhaps because at a level deeper than mere speech they spoke the same language. If Xi's political philosophy isn't exactly China First, it is something close to it but at the same time distinctively Chinese: something like "Party First." And putting the interests of the Communist Party first is one thing he shares with all of his predecessors. Like Deng, Xi is a pragmatist who will stay on the capitalist road so long as it leads to much greater wealth than any other. Like Jiang, he is very happy to lead a ruling party dominated by his country's business elite. Like his immediate predecessor Hu, he is crafty enough to use patriotism and ethnic pride as tools to keep ordinary Chinese (if not necessarily China's minority groups) on his side. And like Mao, Xi seems to be ruthless enough to succeed in making his own Chinese Dream a reality. As long as he continues to put the Party first, Xi is likely to maintain his grip on power -- and the Party's loyalty. And as long as the Party puts Xi first, he is likely to have no cause to complain. Xi Jinping Thought may not sell as many books as Mao's did, but come 2021 it will be Xi who sets the course for the next 100 years of the Communist Party of China.
  2. By Channel NewsAsia, Updated: 29/07/2011 Tan Kin Lian defends TOTO, 4D applications by his firm Tan Kin Lian defends TOTO, 4D applications by his firm SINGAPORE: Business development manager Kelvin Lee was surfing through the iPhone App store on Wednesday night when he stumbled on an app that generates numbers for the bi
  3. Because Joe Biden deserves a thread of his own for the next four years. WASHINGTON: Democrat Joe Biden was on Wednesday (Jan 20) sworn in as the 46th President of the United States. With his hand on a five-inch thick heirloom Bible that has been in his family for more than a century, Biden took the oath of office administered by US Chief Justice John Roberts that binds the president to "preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States". Biden, 78, became the oldest US president in history at a scaled-back ceremony in Washington that was largely stripped of its usual pomp and circumstance, due both to the coronavirus and security concerns following the Jan 6 assault on the US Capitol by supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump. The norm-defying Trump flouted one last convention on his way out of the White House when he refused to meet with Biden or attend his successor's inauguration, breaking with a political tradition seen as affirming the peaceful transfer of power.
  4. Jiang Zemin, who succeeded Deng Xiaoping as China's leader, died from leukaemia and multiple organ failure. BEIJING: China's former leader Jiang Zemin, who steered the country through a transformational era from the late 1980s and into the new millennium, died on Wednesday (Nov 30) at the age of 96, state news agency Xinhua said. Jiang took power in the aftermath of the Tiananmen Square crackdown and led the world's most populous nation towards its emergence as a powerhouse on the global stage. "Jiang Zemin passed away due to leukaemia and multiple organ failure in Shanghai at 12.13pm on Nov 30, 2022, at the age of 96, it was announced on Wednesday," Xinhua reported. When Jiang replaced Deng Xiaoping as leader in 1989, China was still in the early stages of economic modernisation. Jiang was president from 1993 to 2003. By the time he retired as president, China was a member of the World Trade Organization, Beijing had secured the 2008 Olympics, and the country was well on its way to superpower status. Analysts say Jiang and his "Shanghai Gang" faction continued to exert influence over communist politics long after he left the top job. He is survived by his wife Wang Yeping and two sons. https://www.channelnewsasia.com/asia/former-china-president-jiang-zemin-dies-age-96-3111731
  5. Ma is leading at this time with a slim lead
  6. https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Philippine-elections-2022/Who-will-succeed-Duterte-Five-presidential-contenders-to-know?utm_campaign=GL_asia_daily&utm_medium=email&utm_source=NA_newsletter&utm_content=article_link&del_type=1&pub_date=20211011190000&seq_num=14&si=44594 Who will succeed Duterte? Five presidential contenders to know Ex-cop, dictator's son, mayor, boxer and VP in running for top job in Philippines Five of the runners for the Philippine presidency, from left to right: Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa, Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr., Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso, Emmanuel "Manny" Pacquiao, and Maria Leonor "Leni" Robredo. (Source photos by AP, Reuters and EPA/Jiji) CLIFF VENZON, Nikkei staff writerOctober 11, 2021 17:47 JST MANILA -- The Philippines kicked off its election season last week with the registration of candidates for next May's polls. Over 18,000 positions are to be contested, but all eyes are on the presidential race. Some 97 people have registered their candidacies for the top role, but the election commission still has to screen hopefuls and release an official list. The public's favorite in opinion polls is Davao Mayor Sara Duterte, the daughter of the president Rodrigo Duterte. While Sara missed Friday's filing deadline, saying she would seek a third term as mayor, candidate substitutions are permitted until Nov. 15 and her supporters hope for a change of heart. Among those who have filed are Duterte's former police chief, the son of a late dictator, the mayor of Manila, a boxing champion, and the current vice president. Here are five of the registered contenders that you need to know (listed in alphabetical order of surname): Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa Polling: Not included in a Pulse Asia survey conducted Sept 6 to 11 that asked respondents who they would vote for as president. The 59-year-old senator is a former national police chief who led the early years of Duterte's drug war. He is the candidate of the ruling PDP-Laban party. His candidacy, registered just hours before Friday's deadline, was a surprise to many and has fueled speculation that he will be a placeholder for Sara Duterte should she decide to run. Dela Rosa, who served as police officer in Duterte's home patch of Davao, has denied such a suggestion. He said his candidacy had been considered by the party long before registration and hiding it from the public was just a strategy. "I am fielded by my political party PDP-Laban for reasons that they have not found anyone else who will continue the legacy of President Duterte, our fight against drugs and criminality, corruption, terrorism, and our economic recovery amid the pandemic," dela Rosa said on Friday. His vice presidential running mate is fellow first-time senator, Bong Go, Duterte's long-time aide. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. Polling: Second in the Pulse Asia survey with 15%, behind leader Sara Duterte's 20% The 64-year-old son and namesake of the late dictator has launched a bid to return his family to power. His father, who ruled the country for two decades, was overthrown in the 1986 "People Power" revolution, forcing the family into exile in Hawaii. The Marcoses has since rebuilt their political fortunes, even as widespread human rights abuses and corruption during the dictatorship continue to hound them. The Oxford-educated Marcos Jr. has been a provincial governor, congressman and senator. He lost the 2016 vice presidential race to Leni Robredo by a slim margin. A Duterte supporter, Marcos Jr. said his party had wanted to adopt the president as its vice presidential candidate until he announced his retirement from politics on Oct. 2. "I will bring that form of unifying leadership back to our country," Marcos said when he declared his candidacy last week. Francisco "Isko Moreno" Domagoso Polling: Third with 13% The 46-year-old mayor of Manila styles himself as a centrist in a country still deeply divided following the election of Duterte in 2016. "I will be a healing president," Moreno said last month when he declared his bid. He is expected to capitalize on his humble beginnings, handsome looks, as well as the clean-up and infrastructure projects in the capital since entering office in 2019. "I don't belong to a large clan. I am neither a son nor a daughter of a president," he said last month in a dig at some of his rivals who are backed by political dynasties. Moreno is a former actor who was discovered by a talent scout while attending a funeral in 1993. A son of a stevedore and housewife, he grew up in the slums of Manila, where he "salvaged in restaurant garbage bins for leftovers which were repurposed by his practical mother into the family dinner," according to his official profile. As a young boy, he collected newspapers and glass bottles and sold them to junk dealers. Moreno is running with Dr. Willie Ong, a physician with 16 million followers on Facebook. Emmanuel "Manny" Pacquiao Polling: Fourth with 12% The 42-year-old boxing star hung up his gloves last month to focus on his presidential campaign. The incumbent senator recently had a fallout with President Duterte amid infighting in the ruling PDP Laban party. Pacquiao has criticized graft in the Duterte administration and warned that corrupt government officials will be jailed if he becomes president. Pacquiao is banking on his rags-to-riches life story that has inspired many and propelled his political career. "The Manny Pacquiao in front of you has been moulded by poverty," he said last month when he declared his bid. Born in Mindanao, the country's southern island and Duterte's home region, he started boxing at the age of 16 and went on to build a career with world titles in eight different weight divisions. His national hero status as a boxer, however, has yet to extend to his political career. He has been criticized as an absentee lawmaker with unimpressive legislative record. Maria Leonor "Leni" Robredo Polling: Sixth with 8% The 56-year-old incumbent vice president has clashed with Duterte on issues such as his bloody drug war and pro-China foreign policies. A former human rights lawyer, Robredo entered politics a year after the death of her husband Jesse, a good governance champion. She beat an opponent from an influential political dynasty in a congressional race. Robredo won the 2016 vice presidential race on a campaign to uplift the lives of the marginalized, but the political machinery of the former ruling Liberal Party was an advantage that she now lacks. She has been praised for her pandemic response program, which has relied on donations due to the meager budget allocated to her office. While serving as chair of the Liberal party, Robredo is running as an independent candidate. Her running mate is Sen. Francis Pangilinan, an advocate for the agriculture sector and husband of actress Sharon Cuneta. Ella Hermonio contributed to this report.
  7. https://asia.nikkei.com/Editor-s-Picks/China-up-close/Xi-Jinping-sends-shock-waves-with-his-2035-manifesto Former Chinese leader Mao Zedong ruled until his death at 82. Many think President Xi Jinping is eyeing the possibility of staying in office until 2035, when he too will be 82-years-old. (Nikkei montage/AP/Reuters/Getty Images) Xi Jinping sends shock waves with his 2035 manifesto A coded news release signals the president's intent to be 'leader for life' KATSUJI NAKAZAWA, Nikkei senior staff writerAugust 6, 2020 04:09 JST TOKYO -- At the end of last month, the Chinese Communist Party announced it will convene a key policy meeting in October. "The fifth plenary session of the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China will be held in Beijing in October," the Xinhua article read. Attendees will assess the proposals for the next five-year plan that spans 2021 to 2025 "and future targets for 2035," it said. For China watchers around the world, the second half of that sentence is a coded message that could not go unnoticed. "President Xi Jinping really does intend to stay in power for the long run," one political pundit said. "This must be, in effect, the manifesto for the next 15 years." While China has modernized over the years, it still retains some remnants of its socialist planned economy era, including the formulation of five-year plans. Therefore, the decision to discuss a new plan comes as no surprise. But to plan for a decade beyond that, all the way to 2035, does not come from any textbook, and it raised many eyebrows. Chinese President Xi Jinping, center, is seen with other members of the Politburo Standing Committee in Beijing. © AP In a world where the near future is becoming increasingly unclear, especially as the coronavirus pandemic rages on, looking 15 years down the road is far-fetched, even for the strategic-thinking Chinese. It would be equivalent to drawing up three five-year plans in one stroke. What political intentions lie behind the move? Veteran party officials will easily realize what they are. Upon hearing about the ultra-long-term plan for 2035, one political pundit reacted by citing a quote by Zhuge Liang, the master strategist from the Three Kingdoms period. "Spare no effort unto one's dying day." It was a slogan the top bureaucrat liked to use to express his resolve when he went to war. Doing one's best until one's death might sound like a compliment to Xi's resolve, but the reality is this pundit was speaking sarcastically in a way unique to China. The key here is Mao Zedong, the founding father of "new China," who reigned over China until his death at 82. For Xi, who was born in 1953, the year 2035 is when he too will turn 82. Mao was the "eternal chairman" of the Communist Party. By comparing himself to Mao, Xi is trying to pave the way to becoming the second leader to stay in power for life. Naturally, not everybody in the party is thrilled with Xi's daring ambition. Those opposed to his ultralong reign cannot speak out loudly but occasionally attempt to put up resistance using various methods, perhaps circling around like a bee looking to sting. "Things are moving too soon," one veteran party source said. Already in July the party has decided what to discuss in an October meeting, he noted. Chairman Mao Zedong makes a report at the second Plenary Session of the Seventh Central Committee of the Communist Party of China in 1949. (AP Photo/Hsinhua News Agency) © AP According to the communist calendar, this summer will be a crucial period that will affect the future of the Xi Jinping era. That is because ahead of the next quinquennial party National Congress in 2022, it will be this year, not next, when the framework of the discussions will come together. The prelude to a full-scale political battle over the 2022 national congress is already underway. In some cases, the outline of key personnel changes at the congress, including specific names, will be discussed this year. From Xi's standpoint: Victory goes to the one who makes the first move. Certainly now is not the time to play defense. With the domestic economy in the doldrums and relations with the U.S. in tatters, Xi would not be able to make much of an argument if he were defending himself in front of party elders. If Xi can make people think that his status will be secure, overseeing the party's national congresses in 2022, then in 2027 and even in 2032 as China's de facto top leader, party members, including those who do not belong to Xi's faction, will come to heel en masse. They will serve the powerful for their own good at the end of the day. On the other hand, Xi's boldness could backfire, resulting in an even harsher feud with rivals. If party elders or rivals see this summer as their last chance to make their case, there is no shortage of topics with which to go after him. An aerial view of workers building a utility tunnel, a passage built underground or above ground to carry utility lines such as electricity, steam, water supply pipes, and sewer pipes, at the Xiong'an New Area. © AP Looking back, Xi was also on the offensive at the party's last national congress, in 2017, the last national congress. Shortly before the event, Sun Zhengcai, then the top official of Chongqing and a candidate to succeed the top leader in the future, fell victim to Xi's signature anti-corruption campaign. At the party's 2017 congress, five years after he took the helm of the party, Xi also succeeded in doing something that was thought to be impossible: enshrining his eponymous ideology in the party's constitution. Months later he scrapped the presidential limit of two five-year terms. In China today, many governmental programs have completion dates of 2035. The Xiong'an New Area, a massive new city in Hebei Province, is among them. The project is proceeding with Xi's full backing. Last month, Xi declared that the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System, China's answer to GPS, had formally started global operations. A Chinese official in charge of the system has made clear that it will be upgraded by 2035. Xi attends the completion and commissioning ceremony for the Beidou Navigation Satellite System in Beijing on July 31. © AP Chinese officials are publicly referring to "Made in China 2025" much less frequently now that the blueprint for upgrading the country's high-tech industries has come under fire from the U.S. This shows a certain degree of consideration to the international political situation. But the ultra-long-term plan for 2035 is at the core of Xi's politics, and China will push ahead with it regardless of Beijing's external relations if domestic politics demand it. Naturally, China's confrontation with the U.S. will intensify. In mid-July, Chinese netizens prematurely celebrated the culmination of a long-held dream. The country's April-June gross domestic product, it was believed, had finally overtaken that of the U.S. "The great rejuvenation" had happened, they said, and the country had regained its status as the world's top economy, which it had held before being defeated by the U.K. in the 1840-1842 Opium War. This turned out to be incorrect due to miscalculations over month-on-month comparisons and year-on-year growth rates, but it is true that China is closing in on the U.S. in terms of economic size. "No country or individual can stop the historical pace of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation," Xi has repeatedly said, reflecting his confidence that China will be able to overtake the U.S. His supporters would say that extending his reign until 2035 is a necessary component to realize "the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation." The cursed year of 2020 means little to the leader, if he is thinking in much longer time frames. Would his plan really be accepted under the current circumstances? A tentative answer to this question will become clear when the fifth plenary session concludes in October. Katsuji Nakazawa is a Tokyo-based senior staff writer and editorial writer at Nikkei. He has spent seven years in China as a correspondent and later as China bureau chief. He is the 2014 recipient of the Vaughn-Ueda International Journalist prize for international reporting.
  8. Nope, it is not my birthday today and neither am I preparing one for someone special anytime soon. I find it hard to believe that it has something to do with the upcoming US Presidential Election. 😥 Kanye West running for US president under the Birthday Party https://www.yahoo.com/amphtml/entertainment/kanye-west-running-us-president-222012967.html Rapper Kanye West will run for US president under the Birthday Party, which he has founded along with his running mate, Wyoming preacher Michelle Tidball. Going by that, maybe the next political party in Singapore can consider the following names for their party? 🤣🤣 Advance Party Blanket Party Farewell Party Foam Party Sarong Party Third Party
  9. If you’ve ever wanted to work at the Istana, now might be your chance. The official residence and office of the President of Singapore has put up a job advertisement on the Careers @ Gov portal. The opening? A butler position. Responsibilities Under the title “Assistant Senior Butler/ Butler”, the advert says that the responsibilities include providing hospitality services, along with food and beverages to guests at the Istana. Butlers will also have to perform housekeeping duties such as readying the Istana for events, setting up ceremonial props or tables, and helping in various places such as the kitchen, linen room or floral arrangement room. There is even an opportunity for applicants with relevant past working experience to be appointed at a higher level, leading a team of butlers and performing other administrative and logistical duties. In order to apply, applicants must be Singapore citizens, and if successful, will be offered a one or two year contract in the first instance. Butlers will also have to perform housekeeping duties such as readying the Istana for events, setting up ceremonial props or tables, and helping in various places such as the kitchen, linen room or floral arrangement room. There is even an opportunity for applicants with relevant past working experience to be appointed at a higher level, leading a team of butlers and performing other administrative and logistical duties. In order to apply, applicants must be Singapore citizens, and if successful, will be offered a one or two year contract in the first instance. https://mothership.sg/2019/07/istana-butler-job/
  10. The SAF Pledge We, members of the Singapore Armed Forces, do solemnly and sincerely pledge that we will always bear true faith and allegiance to the President and the Republic of Singapore. We will always support and defend the Constitution. We will preserve and protect the honour and independence of our country with our lives. So says the SAF pledge which many of us have been saying throughout our NSF & reservist days. My question is why are we pledging our allegiance to the President? Is it because he is the head of state? What about the PM or the Defence Minister who is the head of MINDEF & of course SAF. And the allegiance to the Republic of Singapore is to her people or the government of the day? Other than comments from fellow MCFers bros & sis, any constitutional experts to comment?
  11. President's Scholar charged with false entries in SAF documents to have case re-tried http://www.straitstimes.com/breaking-news/...have-case-re-tr By Ian Poh A 28-year-old army captain, who was charged with making false entries in an official document, will have his case re-tried after a military appeals court quashed his conviction. Sherwayn Tan, 28, had been fined $2,000 for falsely indicating he had used a Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) facility to train soldiers under him, and another unrelated charge. He also received a letter of discharge from the Defence Ministry (Mindef) following his guilty plea in a Subordinate Military Court last July. But on Monday, a five-man Military Court of Appeal unanimously decided that that the conviction be set aside following an appeal by the infantry officer, who is also a President's Scholar. Tan holds an Economics degree from the London School of Economics. It is understood the SAF scholar, who enlisted for military service in 2004 and had a clean disciplinary record prior to the offences, is nearing the end of his six-year bond.
  12. Former president of Japan's Toyota dies at 88 https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asiapacific/former-president-of-japan-s-toyota-dies-at-88-9838662 Toyota's former president Tatsuro Toyoda, who helped the Japanese auto giant establish a foothold in North America, has died at the age of 88, the company said Saturday. TOKYO: Toyota's former president Tatsuro Toyoda, who helped the Japanese auto giant establish a foothold in North America, has died at the age of 88, the company said Saturday (Jan 6). Toyoda, an uncle of current Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda, died of pneumonia on December 30, the firm said in a statement. His funeral has already been held and was attended by close relatives, but Toyota said it plans to hold a separate farewell ceremony. Toyoda joined the company - founded by his father Kiichiro Toyoda - in 1953 and in 1984 became the first president of a new firm formed by Toyota and General Motors. The California-based joint venture was part of Toyota's push to expand production and increase its share in the North American market. The plant produced nearly 8 million vehicles until its closure in 2010, according to the company. Toyoda served as Toyota president between 1992 and 1995. RIP
  13. https://www.facebook.com/ChannelNewsAsia/po...150253328502934 [rolleyes]
  14. TAIPEI—Opposition candidate Tsai Ing-wen won a landslide victory in Taiwan’s presidential election Saturday, making her the democracy’s first female president and setting back Beijing’s ambitions to reunify the island with the mainland. Ms. Tsai’s commanding victory brings to power her Democratic Progressive Party, or DPP, which espouses Taiwan’s formal independence from China—a red line for Beijing, which claims the island as its territory.Eric Chu, the candidate from the ruling Kuomintang, or Nationalist Party, conceded defeat and congratulated Ms. Tsai on her victory as results from the election commission, although incomplete, gave her an unassailable lead. While expected, the result is a blow for the Chinese government, which seeks reunification with Taiwan and has forged a good working relationship with Taipei under the outgoing president, KMT politician Ma Ying-jeou. It could alsocomplicate Beijing’s ties with Washington, which is obliged by U.S. law to help Taiwan defend itself. During the campaign, Ms. Tsai, a 59-year-old former law professor, promised not to provoke Beijing and abide by existing agreements, many of which promoted expanded commercial ties.At the same time, Ms. Tsai spoke to concerns among many Taiwanese about Beijing’s rising influence during Mr. Ma’s eight years in office and the effect China’s economic heft was having in enriching a business elite, while drawing away jobs and investment from Taiwan’s economy Results from a simultaneous legislative election were expected later on Saturday evening. Many pollsters predict that the DPP could also win them, either outright or in a coalition. It would be the first time the ruling KMT and its allies have lost control of the legislature sinceChiang Kai-shek’s Nationalist government was ousted from the mainland by Communist forces in 1949.
  15. http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/singapore-football-has/3041302.html I like this interview. Machiam hard truths. Uncensored. And yes. FAS sucks... they need an overhaul
  16. I wonder if Hillary wants to try for President again in 2016. In 2008, she tried but lost narrowly to Obama. Main problem is age - She will be 69 in 2016 and if she last 2 terms, will step down at 77. Right now some news sites are already talking about Clinton (Hillary) vs Bush (Jeb) in 2016. Should be very sexciting to watch if it comes true
  17. See this: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/singapore/courts-crime/story/ex-ntuc-president-and-mp-phey-yew-kok-how-the-case-unfolded-201506#xtor=CS1-10 After he run road for 35 years, now surrenders at age 81. My guess is that he probably as a severe illness and wants free medical treatment.
  18. Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit Singapore next month (November 2015), capping a year-long series of celebrations to mark 25 years of diplomatic ties as well as meetings to deepen bilateral cooperation.Singapore President Tony Tan Keng Yam and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said they looked forward to Mr Xi's state visit.... http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/xi-to-visit-spore-to-mark-25-years-of-diplomatic-ties Xi had visited Singapore several times over the years, with most recent in 2010 when he met LKY to unveil a bust of Deng Xiaoping.
  19. President Xi and his wife recently visited the UK. The UK rolled out the red carpet for him and dished out all sorts of niceties to make the Chinese President feel good. They even got the Duchess of Cambridge to wear this stunning red dress at the official state banquet. This is no ordinary red, this is Communist Chinese Party Red. A most deliberate choice. Well, I gotta say that the Duchess of Cambridge looks really cool. It helps that she is tall. In this picture, President Xi bows his head, showing his respect to royalty (and a lady of course). Some video compilation and other pictures from the trip here. You can see Kung Fu Panda and even Jackie Chan. Earlier, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge hosted the Chinese President and his wife at some function in London. Kate wore this lacy elegant dress.
  20. I have been reading up on Chinese President Xi Jinping's recent visit to the USA. Very fascinating. At least the leaders of the two most powerful countries in the world are shaking hands and holding joint press conferences, even if China refuses to concede anything on the South China Sea issue. President Xi's first stop was not Washington DC, but Seattle. Here is a video of his arrival. The Presidential plane looks to be a commercial charter - Air China, I think a Boeing 747-400. You can even see the Star Alliance sign next to the aircraft door. President and Mrs Xi arrive in Seattle, USA. During his visit to Boeing, President Xi announced US$38 billion worth of orders for Boeing Aircraft, from China. It is widely expected that China will surpass USA as Boeing's most important customer in a few years. Some more pictures of President Xi's tour of the Boeing factory. Private tour. President Xi on stage. President Xi getting a momento from Boeing. Looks like a framed photograph of his arrival. I think they use the same metal for this photo frame, as they use for aircraft. Simple but very neat. In Seattle, Mr Xi met top American executives, including leaders of Microsoft and Boeing. His plane landed at Paine Field, adjacent to Boeing's manufacturing base. To set itself apart, Microsoft gave President Xi a special tour and exhibition of Microsoft HQ, and this included a banquet where Chief Executive Satya Nadella and co-founder Bill Gates could be found sitting near Mr Xi or his trusted aide. I don't know who that Chinese man beside Bill Gates is, but he must be somebody very important to President Xi.
  21. He bring shame to singapore.. since 2009 local soccer is 10 times worse off.. N he multi task as a lousy mp n many jobs. wtf, can he even dedicate 10hrs a week on fas, 10hrx a week as mp and blah blah ba
  22. oh, ours definitely cannot do it... cos they must have the dignity and also to keep up their standard of living
  23. Actually, I think the whole world wants to see Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, because this is the first time she is making a public appearance for a few months, because of her second pregnancy. Anyway, the pictures are fun to look at. Some have been coming out, and I have posted some on the blog. http://londonproperty123.blogspot.sg/2014/10/president-tony-tan-of-singapore-visits.html
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