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Blood and Treasure On the Empire State Building

Considering that communist China is financing $800 billion of the $11.8 trillion government debt incurred by the largest capitalist economy in the world, it is sadly ironic that the Empire State Building-- built during the Great Depression with American steel, a testament to the “can-do” spirit of our nation-- would drape itself in red and yellow lights tonight on September 30, to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

Another irony: According to The Telegraph of London, the “people” are barred from going to Beijing's Tiananmen Square to watch the parade that will celebrate the achievements of “their” republic:

The parade will be reviewed by President Hu Jintao and a few thousand invited media and dignitaries seated in red-carpeted grandstands arranged along one side of Tiananmen Square beneath a freshly painted portrait of Chairman Mao.

Later, Tiananmen Square, which at 100 acres is the largest public space in the world capable of holding several hundred thousand people comfortably, will host a night-time firework and laser light-show attended by 60,000 carefully vetted people and performers.

As in all totalitarian regimes, some animals are more equal than others. This is the bloody history that the Empire State Building's lighting scheme will be honoring:

  • In the years following the communist takeover of China-- known as the Yan’an Rectification Movement-- thousands of intellectuals and others who might derail the indoctrination of the populace with Marxist and Leninist principles were killed.
  • This campaign was followed by the Zhen Fan and Shu Fan which targeted former Chinese Nationalist officials and employees of Western corporations, business owners, landowners, and intellectuals. An estimated three to five million people were killed, and another 1.5 million were sent to labor camps.
  • Various campaigns and movements kept targeting intellectuals and other enemies of the state. But try as hard as they might, the secret police and communist officials couldn’t kill as many Chinese as efficiently as the widespread famine triggered by the Great Leap Forward --Chairman Mao’s attempts to impose collectivism on China’s peasant farmers -- which resulted in between 20 and 43 million people starving to death (Mao himself always seemed very well-fed).
  • Mao’s subsequent economic and social engineering programs were also dismal failures and fearing that capitalist sentiment was stealthily creeping into the hearts and minds of the people, he launched the Cultural Revolution and went after his enemies and those pesky intellectuals with a vengeance. With the educated being specifically targeted, schools and universities were shuttered and students from urban areas were forcibly relocated to the remote countryside. Illiteracy rates soared, ancient Chinese artifacts and monuments were destroyed as a symbolic break with “the old ways of thinking” and traditional customs and religious ceremonies were systematically stamped out. As many as 36 million people were persecuted; of these up to 1.5 million were killed and an equal number maimed.

The red and yellow lights bathing the Empire State Building are meant to symbolize the flag of the People’s Republic of China, with its red field and five gold stars.

Given the immeasurable suffering of the Chinese people over the last 60 years, when you look at the lights on the Empire State Building, think of the red as the blood of the millions shed in the numerous brutal repressive purges that kept the communists in power, and think of the gold as the amount of money the U.S. owes the heirs of Mao’s revolution. China is now the third largest economy in the world. Given its burgeoning GDP and our exploding national debt, it will soon surpass the U.S. Then the Chinese can buy the Empire State building-- with devalued American dollars-- and keep the red and yellow lights on every day.

The Stiletto blogs at TheStilettoblog.com. Click here to read more.