Michael Kuhn – Arguing about theories and political opinions


Hongkong protests – and some lessons about the freedom of speech

1. It is good to hear that people in Hongkong stand up against the Chinese government and the political system in China imposing the Chinese interpretation of citizenship on the people of Hongkong. That this regime, that made China a vibrant capitalist country still names its political party a communist party is one of these oddities of recent history: Whatever these practicing communist  regimes in the Soviet Union and in China have practically made from this idea, for those who might not know anymore, the idea of communism was once founded to support the exploited people against capitalism. Long time ago.

2. There are obviously some people in this social movement, who, as it looks indeed from the Western media,  suggest to invite the West, above all the US, to support their protest activities with sanctions against China. Who does not want to be killed in the next civil war, instigated and orchestrated by the US should carefully check who offers help for which purposes.
The calls of demonstrating people in Western countries, such as in London,  calling the British government to support the people in Hongkong,  the people in Hongkong should kindly reject as a call for the interventions of the West and as a carrier for the hostilities of the West against China. This is about the rivalries of China and the West and these rivalries are about the question who is ruling the world; this is the very opposite of standing up for people’s matters and the silly demonstrating people in London calling for such an intervention and the people in Hongkong, they might be naive enough to believe they support, will pay a high price for making themselves the idiots of the Western imperialists.
One can hopefully trust that the Hongkong people used their freedom collecting information about the world, that they know very well, that the US welcome and support such protests, given they are directed against governments or countries, which are their enemies, and instrumentalize them for their political purposes, as they did in Syria. The result of this strategy are for everybody most visible who has access to the media. Needless to say therefore, transforming these protest into a civil war in China, that is certainly what the US government is dreaming about – and one can be sure that they know what to do to make these dreams reality.

3.  Now doubt, unlike in China, people living in the West, have the right to articulate their political opinions. But does this mean everybody can say what he wants? China, once a country that aimed at building a political system other than the West and then transformed into a very successful capitalism, also transformed their policies from opposing the propaganda from the capitalist world against their alternative society system, towards oppressing any debates among their people, once they became a capitalist country. Phrased in an outdated language, they transformed the “command of the proletariat” into the command over the proletariat. Hence it is more than understandable that the people from Hongkong do not want to be subsumed under this censorship. Standing up against the Chinese interpretation of citizenship and instead for the concept of citizenship in the former colonized Hongkong is, however, a fatal error fueling some illusions about these rights. The experiences they have to face with the existing Western rights they do have in Hongkong could already show that having these rights does not include that you can say what you want and that such protests are tolerated by a political system, in which these rights exist and in which it is executed as it is. Better than not having them? But there existence is also not supporting their protest, but opposing them and the protests only continue because the demonstrating people ignore any rights.

And is it not also already telling, that these rights of free speech, people have in the West only have it in the metropoles of the West; in the “rest” of the world under the Western control, they very much support all kind of regimes across their western ruled world, and compared to the brutal ways these deputy regimes there treat the people looks, compared  to this, the oppression modes in China look, at least until now, rather decelerated. As it looks, the Chinese government is prepared to shift the level of violence against the Hongkong people to the level of violence of these Western deputy dictatorships.

4. The fact that people in the Western imperialist countries do have these freedoms, should however not be misinterpreted. Isn’t it striking that those people in these countries, who have these rights rarely use them and if they use them, as in the recent case of France, the way the Western political elites are attacking anybody, who is not happy to have these rights and therefore to not use them, that is who uses them for any protest, experiences a level of violence from their state, proud to protect these rights, compared to which the ways the police in Hongkong attacks the demonstrating people looks again rather restrained. The concept of police intervention in the West, once people seriously carry their protest on the roads is a top down civil war against the protesting people, always accompanied by the political propaganda, denouncing these people as misusing these very rights, once they use them.

5. And this is not a contradiction to granting these rights, but it is their implication and consequence, being granted these rights by a Western nation state. The Western propaganda  discussing these rights in the Western world and in the so called developing Western ruled world with all their dictatorships in particular is here quite telling: only people who deserve the those rights are given these rights and they deserve them the more, the more they accept their political agendas without any protest and instead going on the roads, use the elections, in which they have nothing to choose.

6. The fact that there is a permission of a the political power to say what a citizen wants to say, might look as if everybody can say what he wants and that it makes it much easier to articulate any protest. However, the freedom of speech anything else but telling everybody you may say what you like, particularly about the political power. Giving people the permission to articulate their opinions is only a much cleverer way to keep people#s views under the control of a nation state regime, much cleverer than the direct oppression of opinions as the Chinese government does it,  and it is everything else but a useful instrument for protesting against a state regime.
Already the fact that saying what one wants to say is not the most natural thing, but a granted right by a political power quite quickly arrives at forfeiting these rights. Firstly, the right to say what you want to say, is not about any talk between you and me, the right to articulate your opinion is a permission to say something about the very political power who at the same time the one guaranteeing this right.  In this type of arguing, the nation state is the one who allows you to argue with him and the one about which you argue. It is a way of arguing in which  one side of this debate, the state, is the topic of the debate and the one who allows any citizen to critique him, hence this way of arguing is very conditional: what ever you say and if you are permitted to say this is a matter of the considerations of the political power, if you use this permission is a way the donator of this permission appreciates or not. This donator of the freedom of speech, permitting to be critiqued, is not a normal citizen but the one who has the power to decide anything, including granting the right to say what you want or to relativate and to omit this right and it is obvious: who is allowed to say what and when and under which conditions is a matter of the considerations of the donator of this freedom. The many cases, where people believing to use these rights are punished for violating these rights  for what they say, are thus no contradiction to these rights, but their consequences. Hence, the  permission allowing people to phrase critique about the political power depends on the  pros and cons of the political power about how to rule people. Rather than a grant for the citizens, the right for free speech is grant for the political power, using this for his considerations about his ways to manage the political opinions of his citizens about him.

7. To continue: The difference of the political system in China and the West, and a misleading  and falsely concluded and deadly illusions






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