Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Green Wall Goes Up To Conceal Blight

Nope, this time I'm talking about Beijing. Turns out their local government treats them as disrespectfully as ours does us.

An article titled "Before Guests Arrive, Beijing Hides Some Messes" appeared in today's New York Times, and it portrayed some pretty striking parallels to what's going on on our block:

"A veil of green plastic netting now covers Ms. Sun’s restaurant. Mr. Song’s house and several shops that he rents to migrant families were surrounded by a 10-foot-tall brick wall last week, part of a last-minute beautification campaign. The authorities deemed his little block of commerce an eyesore."

A green wall erected to deal with blight? Sounds about right.

"Now a wall conceals a little cove of entrepreneurship"

If Freddy's isn't a cove of entrepreneurship, then what is?

"Zhao Fengxia, a neighbor who owns three shops, said she believed that officials and developers were using Olympic beautification as a pretext to strangle their business and put pressure on them to leave."

Officials and developers are using pro basketball as a pretext to pressure us to leave. What is it with politicians using sports as a weapon against the poor? Give the poor sneakers, then evict them, then watch them compete from your sky box. That is sooo lame.

"The developers want him to go, but he is holding out for more money."

ahem. Pony up boys. Destroying a neighborhood don't come cheap.

"The city has bullied her to leave. One night last year, a bulldozer slammed into the building. ...Her building is falling apart."

Falling apart you say?

"“For those of us who have lived through the Cultural Revolution, this life is like heaven.”"

My thoughts exactly.

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