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Blaming the East 
18th-Aug-2008 08:50 pm
Unfortunately, many ex-UBFers, especially those from the West, tend to project their rightfully negative view of the UBF practices on Korea and on the Confucian countries in general, mainly China where Confucianism takes its roots. Let me suggest that this is as narrow-minded a point of view as the one propagated by the UBF leaders. Theirs is the us-versus-them mentality: if you're not with us, you're against us. Automatically then, as if adhering to the UBF morale they criticize so much, the ex-UBFers are essentially doing the same by saying things like "the Chinese are copycats", "Confucianism lacks inventiveness", "the Chinese regime is not legitimate since it is not a democracy" and the like.

I really hate to have entered a discussion on mostly political and moral issues on China recently, but then again, I did not start making outrightly racist statements like "the Chinese regime is not legitimate" and the like, in the first place. 

Blaming Koreans, Chinese and Confucians proper is probably the easiest way to shift the responsibility for having made one's own mistakes, for one's own inability to deal with the post-exit trauma. However, is it really the best one? All of the ex-UBFers, including my humble self, are the only ones responsible for ones' own lives and their future. I for one won't get down to the level of blaming the not-so-insignificant part of human civilization for my personal problems. 
22nd-Aug-2008 12:47 am (UTC) - Re: what is the point?
Just to get some things straight:

My first posting was induced by an article that suggested a correlation between China's famousness for copyright infringement and their Confucian culture that fosters a mindset of copying others. Whether there is really a relation can be debated. Copying products is a bit different from copying the group norm and superiors, which is something that was very noticeable for me in UBF. It surely happens in other cults as well, but the question is how much Confucian culture promotes such behavior. Again, this can be debated, and that was the point of my posting. It was not intended as a discussion about China or bashing of Chinese people. Maybe my title was a bit too provocative.

My point is not that UBF, Moonies or regimes like that of Mao or Kim Jong Il are possible only because of the Confucian mindset. Similar cults and regimes existed in non-Confucian cultures. But maybe the Confucian culture fosters the formation and prosperity of such totalist environments to a certain degree, and this is a point that I want to understand. For instance, the Kim Jong Il cult-regime is pretty unique in the world, and the Mao regime also seemed to surpass Hitler and Stalin in its resemblance to cults (I'm not saying in evilness).

My assessment of the Chinese government as "illegitimate" was based on the fact that this government is not democratic and does not heed the human rights and dignity of their own people. For me personally, a government that does not guarantee the basic rights such as freedom of religion, freedom of speech and media etc. and which behaves like the life of a person does have any worth, is not a legitimate government. Maybe you think differently about the Chinese government or the notion of legitimacy of a government, but many Chinese dissidents agree with me (would you call them racists?).

My assessment of the Chinese government as "illegitimate" has also nothing to do with the copyright problems. This is a connection you made, not I.

I didn't say anything about whether Korean or Chinese people in general are bad, or worse than American or German people. They are all just people, good and bad. I know very well that the average Korean is very different from "UBF Koreans" and never claimed anything different. I don't think anybody here seriously believes all Koreans are like UBFers.

I don't even say that all UBF Koreans are bad people, many of them are more like victims of a "cult socialization".

Finally, I do not want to excuse the behavior of UBFers with Korean culture. This is indeed a lame excuse used by UBF apologists and at the same time very offensive for the Korean culture. Maybe, because you live in the Korean culture now, this is what actually offended you, and made you go overboard?
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