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China’s Rich and Poor

10 August 2006
 

China used to be, arguably, one of the most income-equalised society. But not any more. Today the gap between rich and poor expands in an alarming rate along with the economic growth. According to a research study published in 2004 that the wealth gap between China’s urban and rural populations is the highest in the world. And the gap keeps widening. Some days ago, China’s Vice Minister of Finance admitted that China’s income gap has a Gini Coefficient of 0.46, way over "alarm level" of 0.4. In today’s China, the cost of living, in particular the housing, schooling and hospital service, is the biggest concern and financial burden to the ordinary income-earners. On the Internet forums and blogs some Chinese slam the property developers as man-eating beasts, doctors the white snakes and the teachers the cobra.

Passengers Upside Down for 20 Minutes

A roller coaster at an amusement park in Beijing’s Pleasure Valley suddenly stopped working on Wednesday, leaving more than twenty passengers strapped in the middle of the air with their head to the ground and feet up to the sky for about 20 minutes. 300 angry passengers seized the park office and demanded refund. But instead of getting money back, some got shoved and punched by the guards. (Sources: 新华报业网, 千龙网)

Chinese Blogs to Reach 100 Millions

Blogs are booming in China. By the end of 2006, the number of China-based blog is expected to reach 60 million, according to a newly published research paper Development of China's Media Industry in 2006. In 2007, it estimates, the number will further grow to 100 million.

Jet Li the Monkey King and Jackie Chan the Immortal

According to a news report by Xinjing Bao, in a film to be produced by Hollywood, Jet Li will play Monkey King while Jackie Chan takes role as Daoist immortal Lan Caihe. But the real central character is a homeless New York boy who accidentally goes to the past and to the East where he learns martial arts from Jet Li and meditation from Jackie Chan, and returns home as a peace-loving kung fu master.

Chimpanzees Enrol in Training Programs

Water shortage is a big problem in Beijing, so the locals try to work out all possible ways of reducing water consumption. In recent years they’ve turned their eyes to 6000 permanent residents in the Beijing Zoo, and began running workshops to teach the talented few, such as chimpanzees, to learn how to drink water with a straw pipe. The program is a success, claims the zoo authority, with 300,000 tons of water being saved each year.

Going Against the Trend

Tuesday, August 8, is lunar July 15, the climax of the Ghost Month, when all the gates to the Underworld is said to wide open. While most Chinese in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, and many in mainland China would avoid doing anything important on that day, a man in Beijing went against the trend. Armed with a bouquet of flowers, he arrived at the Tiananmen Square, and waited for an hour for his girlfriend to appear. Once he presented the flowers to the girl, he fished out a ring box, in front of thousands of people passing by, going down on the ground, and asked the girl to marry him. The girl accepted. Holding each other tight, they paced away from the square and looked forward to live together happily ever after. (Source of photos: www.photobase.cn)

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China published a Pink Paper, detailing the measurement for ranking the appearance of Chinese women. It consists of 18 chapters, and each dedicates to one particular feature, including facial shape, eyes, brows, ears, nose, lips, teeth, neck, shoulders, hair, chest, waist, hip, arms, hands, feet and skin. It will be used as a general reference to cosmetic products and beauty supply industries. (Sources: 东方网, 法制晚报)

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