Journey in Life: 10/18/18

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Thursday, October 18, 2018

"Last rites" nghĩa là gì?

Photo courtesy istolethetv.

The 'last rites' = nghi lễ dành cho người sắp chết, lễ cầu siêu (in Roman Catholicism, are the last prayers and ministrations given to an individual of the faith, when possible, shortly before death. The last rites go by various names. They may be administered to those awaiting execution, mortally injured, or terminally ill).

Ví dụ
Lawyer agitation: Arrested son fails to perform last rites of mother.

A woman in Jharkhand left the body of her deceased baby girl, who was born with congenital (bẩm sinh; ăn sâu thành tật, thâm căn cố đế) heart ailments on a road. Authorities said she had no money to perform the child’s last rites. The woman, identified as Dolly, had delivered a baby girl at a private hospital about three days before.

On the streets of Delhi, an unclaimed dead body attracts attention. Apart from a few whispers and looks, no one steps into help. Social activist Ravi Kalra is the only person to step into the picture, and make arrangements for the last rites for a life, he knew nothing of, until that moment.

Phạm Hạnh

Bước Đại Nhảy Lùi của Trung Quốc

những gì Đặng làm, Tập đảo ngược lại hết,

...For 35 years or so—from the time Mao died and Deng Xiaoping launched (phát động) his reforms (cải cách) in the late 1970s until Xi assumed power (nắm quyền) in 2012—China avoided many of these pitfalls (điều nguy hiểm, khó khăn không ngờ, cạm bẫy) and defied (thách thức) the law of political averages by building what scholars have called an “adaptive authoritarian” regime. While remaining nominally communist, the country embraced many forms of market capitalism and a number of other liberalizing reforms. Of course, the old system remained highly repressive and was far from perfect in many other ways. It did, however, allow the Chinese government to function in an unusually effective fashion and avoid many of the pathologies (biểu hiện bệnh) suffered by other authoritarian regimes. Censorship (kiểm duyệt) never disappeared (biến mất), for example, but party members could disagree and debate ideas (thảo luận ý tưởng), and internal reports could be surprisingly blunt.

No longer. Today, Xi is systematically undermining virtually every feature that made China so distinct and helped it work so well in the past.

...Under the guise of fighting corruption, President Xi Jinping is methodically dismantling (tháo dỡ, bãi bỏ, triệt phá) virtually every one of the reforms that made China’s spectacular growth possible over the last four decades. In the place of a flawed but highly successful system, he is erecting a colossal (khổng lồ, to lớn khác thường) cult of personality (sùng bái cá nhân) focused on him alone, concentrating more power in his hands than has any Chinese leader since Mao Zedong.

In the short term (ngắn hạn), Xi’s efforts may make China seem less corrupt and more stable (ổn định). But by destroying many of the mechanisms that made the Chinese miracle (thần kỳ) possible, Xi risks reversing (đảo ngược) those gains and turning China into just another police state (think a gigantic, more open version of North Korea): inefficient, ineffective, brittle (giòn, dễ gãy, dễ vỡ), and bellicose (hiếu chiến, thích đánh nhau). And that should worry not just China’s 1.4 billion citizens but the rest of us as well.

Chiến tranh thương mại bắt đầu bóp nghẹt ví tiền của người Trung Quốc

quân dưới trướng của Tập cứ tưởng Trump phỉnh, như trong cuốn 'nghệ thuật đàm phán', hóa ra Trump chơi thật, coi việc "giải quyết yếu tố Trung Quốc"--chứ không phải 'giành việc làm cho người Mỹ' và 'hãy quên Nga đi'--là chiến lược tái tranh cử 2020,

(Phạm Băng Băng lĩnh án phạt 130 triệu USD vì trốn thuế, thật ra nhắm tới vấn đề lớn hơn: tẩu tán tài sản ra nước ngoài của "tinh bông" TQ)

...Initially, Xi’s government figured the president was bluffing (lừa gạt, bịp bợm, tháu cáy). Beijing’s calculation (tính toán) was that, sure, Trump might slap (tát, vỗ) some tariffs (thuế) on Chinese goods, but it’s a mere negotiating tactic (chiến thuật thương lượng/mặc cả)—his “Art of the Deal” writ large (rành rành, sờ sờ, hiển nhiên). After all, past American presidents had often attacked China on the campaign trail—only to make nice while in office. Xi’s men held it together as Trump slapped taxes of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum. They figured Trump’s initial attack on $50 billion of Chinese imports in June would satisfy Peter Navarro and other protectionist (bảo hộ) voices in the White House.

Hardly, as Xi’s team is realizing. If the extra $200 billion of levies Trump tossed Beijing’s way in September weren’t reality-check enough, Mike Pence’s Oct. 4 “we-will-not-stand-down” speech suggests 2019 could get even worse for Beijing.

Pence accused Beijing of trying to “malign” Trump’s credibility, of “reckless harassment” and of working to engineer “a different American president.” On both economic and military issues, Pence declared: “We will not be intimidated (đe dọa, hăm dọa); we will not stand down (xong nhiệm vụ; bỏ lệnh báo động).”

The vice president seemed to confirm that Trump’s trade war is more about tackling China than creating U.S. jobs. Worse, perhaps, taxing Beijing is shaping up to be a 2020 reelection strategy. Forget Russia, Pence suggested: China is the real election meddler.

...The first narrative involves “X-Men” star Fan BingBing, who resurfaced last week after vanishing from public view. She was detained for alleged (cầm tù, câu lưu) tax evasion (trốn thuế) and ordered to cough up $129 million. Yet her case was a stark reminder about something else: Xi’s paranoia (hoang tưởng) about capital outflows as wealthy mainlanders spirit their fortunes abroad.

Đặng Tiểu Bình và cải cách kinh tế Trung Quốc

thường thôi, hiện đang bị Tập dùng chiến dịch xóa sạch

...One of the 256 works on display was a painting that depicted Xi's father Xi Zhongxun delivering a lecture to a group of Chinese leaders, including Deng. This painting generated considerable confusion (lẫn lộn, nhầm lẫn) and conjectures (phỏng đoán, ước đoán) on social media in China as to whether the person in the painting was President Xi. Another interesting development that raised many eyebrows was the replacement of a giant sculpture (bức tượng) of Deng in the museum with a huge TV screen flashing quotes by Xi. appears that the painting attempts to blend the Party’s official narrative of reform as being in the nature of the party itself with some form of hereditary (có tính kế thừa, cha truyền con nối) link. In the painting, Xi is not portrayed as inheriting power or privileges from his father, but instead as carrying forward his father’s work as part of the national mission of continuous reform and opening up. Such a depiction subtly projects a connection between bold national reforms seemingly started by his father and Xi’s national rejuvenation (làm trẻ lại, trẻ hóa) project. In this context, in the exhibition, Xi’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is presented as a continuation of his father’s reform initiative.

...This has much to do with some of his policy initiatives like the termination of the presidential term limit; re-partification of state and society; more ideological control; and the development of a cult personality around him. These actions signify a reversal of what Deng managed to do after taking over the party leadership... When Xi began dismantling Deng’s policy initiatives, he essentially began questioning the latter’s political wisdom as a core leader and the relevance of the policy reforms he introduced.

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