A few years ago, I was on a bus taking me from the airport to my hotel in downtown Beijing.
On both sides of the busy road were huge billboards that gave clear, unmistakable evidence that the “People’s Republic of China” had veered dramatically toward capitalism and democracy.
One prompted the advantages of owning a new Mercedes sedan, while another insisted that the only way to deliver a high fashion image is with the DKNY clothing line available at any of the major shopping malls in that city. Outdoor advertising was selling everything that night and it continued in print and on television when I got to my room.
I remember smiling at the realization that here we had won the war against Communism with goods instead of guns. The Tiananmen Square tragedy had happened some years before but that surely would be the last breath of totalitarian control.
Except, this week, 25 years after the massacre, the Chinese government is, through complete censorship, still holding truth hostage behind a bamboo curtain of lies and denial that keeps moving China backwards in time.
I’m Pat McMahon.