Category Archives: Society

Why Street Vendors Matter

Street vendors are part of the fabric of Chinese life, and there is no indication that this is going to change. For consumers, they substantially enhance quality of life. For the street vendors themselves, it represents both their livelihood and independence. Easy access to self-employment (in the sense of a 个体户), i.e. the ability to freely sell, trade and provide one’s services, is a basic prerequisite for a functioning free market. Continue reading

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Statism & Violence

In today’s statist age, the right to self-defense is very easily forgotten. It is also forgotten that violence is a trademark of a statist society. The more statist the society and outlook of the inhabitants, the more violence is the result. Continue reading

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What Makes A Government Legitimate?

Eric X. Li asks: What makes a government legitimate? “93% of China’s generation-Y are optimistic about their country’s future! If this is not legitimacy, I’m not sure what is.” In fact, according to the Pew poll, Chinese have more confidence in their leaders and future than any other country surveyed. Continue reading

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Property & Registration in Today’s China – Strange Stuff

Whereas prior to approximately 2000 registration was linked to mere occupancy rights, now it is linked to ownership. Without ownership, no registration. And without registration, you don’t get the various prized state goodies on offer. In particular, your children don’t enjoy the right to attend the local public schools. Continue reading

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Expressing Possession

To take / to receive / to give / to have / to own…. when we look back in time these ideas seem to have all been jumbled up. To see how, let’s take the roots of ‘receive’ – from re + cipere, and of ‘give’, allegedly from *kap- and *ghabh-, respectively, according to Pokorny. Besides the above, what words can we find that use these roots? Continue reading

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Government Spending & Cultures of Dependence

Do people look to an ultimately indifferent government for their welfare? Or do they look to themselves and their families? Continue reading

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