China’s government loves the results of the latest Edelman Trust Barometer, which found that the Chinese people trust their government far more than Americans do theirs.
It’s not even close.
A whopping 91 percent of Chinese respondents told Edelman they trust their government compared to 39 percent of Americans who have faith in Washington.
That robust number for China though must be taken with a huge grain of salt.
It takes a brave man or woman to criticize the central government in a super-surveillance state such as China. They don't want to arouse the powers that be in Beijing who live in constant fear of a mere stirring of dissent or a yearning for a measure of freedom.
Perhaps Edelman should put an asterisk next to that over-the-top China trust number.
Nevertheless, China’s propaganda machine put the report to good use, pitching their authoritarian system of government superior to what we have here.
Governmental mouthpiece China Daily feasted on the Edelman research.
It reckoned that people trust China’s government due to its “performance in tackling COVID-19, incurring economic growth, fighting corruption and pollution, and enhancing its own governance capacity and its quicker response to public concerns.”
There was no mention of Beijing’s cover-up of the initial COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan.
Zhao Lijian, a spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry, chimed in, saying he wasn’t surprised about his country’s high trust score because “the communist party of China and the Chinese government actually deliver for the people.”
Unless of course, you are a Hong Konger, where the government has clamped down on freedom of expression, or a Muslim in the Xianjiang region living in constant fear of being sent to a re-eduction camp and having your family broken apart.
In touting the advantages of China over the US, Liu Leming, professor at East China University, criticized western political systems for leading to an “unstable and unsustainable implementation of policies.”
He said politicians in western systems are constantly quarreling instead of doing practical things and people know that it’s just one big show.
China Daily featured a quote from Deborah Lehr, chair of Edelman’s global advisory, who said China’s “success in rapidly bringing the pandemic under control created confidence with Chinese citizens.”
China has indeed vaccinated more than 80 percent of its 1.4B people with two doses but the government decided to wall off the country from the rest of the world in a bid to defeat the pandemic.
Its Sinopharm and Sinovac shots have been found to be relatively ineffective against the Omicron variant, triggering even harsher controls and lockdowns of its people.
We’ll see if those harsh measures result in a lower trust rating for China’s government in the 2023 Edelman Trust Barometer.
Hey, hey, my, my, Neil wants out of Spotify—unless it dumps Joe Rogan, a font of misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines.
In an open letter to his manager and his record label, Warner Music Group, Young demanded that Spotify yank his music unless it drops Rogan because he is “spreading fake information about vaccines–potentially causing death to those who believe the disinformation being spread about them.”
Young, a 76-year-old who suffered from polio during its last outbreak in Canada in 1952, may not win his PR gambit.
After all, Spotify agreed to pay more than $100M for the rights to “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast in 2020.
As Young mentioned in his letter, JRE’s 11M listeners per episode make it “the world’s largest podcast.”
In a choice between Young and Rogan, the music site may go with the purveyor of misinformation and its bottom line.
Young though may ultimately win the PR war.
He used his celebrity to bring attention to a letter signed by 270 scientists and healthcare professionals earlier this month that said Rogan has “repeatedly spread misleading and false claims on his podcast, provoking distrust in science and medicine.”
The letter noted that “though Spotify has a responsibility to mitigate the spread of misinformation on its platform, the company presently has no misinformation policy.”
Young’s public play may persuade Spotify to adopt the doctors, nurses, scientists and educators call to “immediately establish a clear and public policy to moderate misinformation on its platform.”
If that happens, they can thank Neil and his Heart of Gold.
Hats off to White House correspondent Peter Doocy for blowing off White House advisor and Fox News spouting head Sean Hannity who asked if Joe Biden apologized for calling him a “stupid son of a bitch” for asking whether inflation would be a political liability during the midterm elections.
Sarcastically, Biden said inflation “would be a great asset” and then hurled the vulgarity at the Fox reporter. He called Doocy an hour later to patch things up a bit.
On the apology, Doocy told Hannity: “Sean, the world is on the brink of, like, WWIII right now with all this stuff going on. I appreciate that the president took a couple of minutes out this evening while he was still at the desk to give me a call and clear the air.”
Doocy is upping his game.
Earlier this month, he was schooled by White House press secretary Jen Psaki after he asked why the president refers to the “pandemic of the unvaccinated.”
Triple-vaxxed Pete noted that he came down with the Omicron variant.
Psaki pointed out that the unvaccinated are 17 times more likely to require hospitalization and 20 times more likely to die from COVID than the vaccinated. Did you get that, Pete?
And in the aftermath of the December Fox Christmas Tree fire in front of its New York HQ, Doocy wanted to know if it “was good governing” to put the alleged arsonist out on bail. Next question, Pete.
In his phone call, Doocy told Biden that he was always going to ask something different from what everybody else is asking.
That’s exactly the problem.