My wife and I disagree with the assumption that the Chinese government was attempting to protect the guilty. We are sure that the people responsible for the shoddy construction in Sichuan, China were discovered and punished out of sight of the media.
The guilty people are either dead or locked up in some distant prison and it was done out of sight. Knowing how the Western media loves yellow journalism, they would have kept the pot stirred if there had been a public trial.
Most Chinese want this kind of news gone and out of sight as quickly as possible. It is the Chinese way. Why should the Chinese change their values for Western ways and yellow journalism?
Associated Press: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100122/ap_on_hi_te/as_china_google