As the Communist export scandal grows again (thanks to lead-contaminated candy in California - Sacramento Bee via Boycott 2008), we're finding that this is not the only thing the Communists have touched that is turning to lead these days.
Remember the Olympics? They were supposed to be the great propaganda event of the young century for the Chinese Communist Party. Instead, the Communist Olympiad has upset the Nobel Committee so much it may award the Nobel Peace Prize to Hu Jia or Gao Zhisheng (BBC and Boycott 2008). The former would bring back to light the regime's brutal treatment of AIDS victims (especially in Henan), while the latter would bring the persecution of Falun Gong back into focus (Between Heaven and Earth and Boycott 2008).
Remember the election of Ma Ying-Jeou to the Taiwanese Presidency? It was supposed to usher in a new era of "cooperation" between Beijing and Taipei. Instead, Taiwan is buying American weapons (Washington Times) and its National Security Bureau Director is accusing the cadres of weaponizing SARS (Taipei Times).
How do the cadres respond? They cancel all military contacts with the United States (BBC and CNN), effectively rewarding anti-Communists in the process.
Once again, we are seeing the fundamental weakness of dictatorial regimes, as explained by John Lewis Gaddis (We Now Know: Rethinking Cold War History), "who is about to tell the authoritarian in charge when he is about to do something stupid?"