Recovering from a Beating by Mother Nature – Part 4/4

If you are interested in the challenges China faces from mother nature, I suggest visiting the Asian Disaster Reduction Center Site (ADRC) to discover that China has survived earthquakes, extreme climate changes, floods, storms, storm surges, forest fires, drought, insect damage, landslides and slope failure.

In particular, earthquakes, droughts and cyclones have caused major damage.

In fact, China is one of the countries most affected by natural disasters, which occur frequently affecting more than 200 million people every year and these disasters have become an important restricting factor for economic and social development. Between 108 BC and 1911 AD there were no fewer than 1,828 major famines in China, or one nearly every year in one or another province.

In addition, the 2008 Sichuan earthquake has continued the country’s revision of their disaster relief plans. One year after the earthquake, the government announced its continued efforts to improve disaster response. A white paper published on the anniversary details plans to increase the state-level storage facilities for relief materials, such as tents, blankets, medicines and rescue devices, from 10 to 24 so that China may react faster to deal with another serious disaster.

American Red Cross – China Earthquake: One Year Later

On May 12, 2011, according to the Pakistan Defense Website (I couldn’t find this information from a Western media source), China’s expenditures and reconstruction efforts since the Sichuan earthquake have cost 885.15 billion yuan, which was 92.37% of the overall rebuilding budget.

Also reported was, “China’s first earthquake museum was opened in Sichuan. It covers 140,000 square meters, and is made up of six theme sections with 270 exhibits and 559 photos.”

“In Sichuan alone,” Pakistan Defense said, “nearly 3,000 schools, 1,000 hospitals and more than 5 million homes have been built or renovated, according to Wei Hong, executive vice-governor of Sichuan province.”

Before condemning China for the schools that collapsed during the Sichuan earthquake, do not forget that the US has allowed nearly 400,000 people to live in the potential path of death and destruction from Mount Rainier, which has been labeled American’s most dangerous volcano. Source: KOMO News

Jesus Christ said, “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”

Return to Recovering from a Beating by Mother Nature – Part 3 or start with Part 1


Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

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2 Responses to Recovering from a Beating by Mother Nature – Part 4/4

  1. Terry K Chen says:

    The handling of the sichuan earthquake only strengthened my belief that the Chinese government cares about its own people a LOT more than western governments do. Within days, tens of thousands of soldiers had made their way into the disaster hit areas. The efficiency of the rescue plan was one that westerners can only dream of. Premier wen jiabao was at the disaster area within a day to make sure things went according to plan. At the elderly age of 70, he still braved all the tough conditions to walk through the epicenter of the earthquake hit regions to console the victims. Would any western leader do the same?

    Many of the soldiers did not sleep for days on end yet they still would not accept any of the provisions that people tried to give them along the way. They had to run all the way to the disaster hit regions covering tens of kilometers a day on foot. PLA soldiers often had to risk their lives to save others. For hurricane katrina, I heard that it took days before troops appeared and all they did was to prevent looting. So much for human rights!

    For anyone who doubts the unity of the chinese people, they should consider the fact that sichuan has a high proportion of minority races including tibetans. The rescue effort consisted of people of many etnicities united as Chinese without any discrimation whatsoever and putting their differences aside to combat the disaster and save as many people as possible. Many people that earned barely enough to eke out a living were donating thousands of dollars to help out the victims. It is in times of disaster that show the true nature of a person. This incident further proved that there is no need to constantly differentiate between the ethnic groups as they are all Chinese!

    • I have no doubt that the CCP in China cares about the people it rules (when I’m saying this, I mean the whole–not some freak group like the so-called rights of a religious brainwashing cult such as the Falun Gong). If the CCP didn’t care, then China would not have reduced poverty to the degree that it has. Ninety percent of global poverty reduction in the last thirty years took place in China.

      For comparison, in India (the globe’s largest democracy), very little poverty reduction has taken place since 1947. Although the West focuses on the corruption of individuals in China and seldom if ever mentions all the good that has been done, the facts speak for themselves. Under the CCP, the average life span went from 35 in 1949 to more than 70s today—more than doubling.

      Life may not be perfect but it has improved dramatically since 1949. The CIA even says severe poverty in China is only 2.5 percent while in India it is closer to 40 percent of the population.

      Then we look at the US where poverty is increasing and members of the GOP (Republican Party) cheered recently in a Florida presidential stump speech when there is mention of a man dying that didn’t have money to pay for health insurance, because the GOP doesn’t believe everyone should have access to health care subsidized for by any government plan. To conservatives in the US, it appears that if you are poor or don’t have a job and cannot afford health care, you should just die. Meanwhile, the GOP supports the Department of Defense’s 700,000 civilian employees and its more than $700 billion annual budget while waging wars all over the planet and building more military bases. I just read this week that Wiki Leaks released documents about secret US drone bases being built that would allow the US to use drones all over the world to strike anywhere at any time.

      However, we should not be surprised. Confucius’s teachings still permeates the Chinese mindset. His ethical and moral system was based on the family and his Five Great Relationships:

      1. between ruler and subject, which is a two way street—the people obey the leaders and the leaders’ obligations are to protect and provide an environment where the people may prosper.

      2. father and son
      3. husband and wife
      4. elder and younger brother
      5. friend and friend

      In each pair, one role was superior and one inferior; one role led and the other followed. Yet each involved mutual obligations and responsibilities. Failure to properly fulfill one’s role could lead to the termination of the relationship. If the CCP were not improving the lifespan and quality of life in China, the people would put an end to the CCP as each dynasty ended leading to the next.

      The CCP is aware of its obligations to the people. However, the people must still work to take advantage of the opportunities that are provided. It is not a free ride.

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