. . . here in the rice-and-corn-growing region of Guangdong province, where tensions are still running high weeks after the protest, farmers say the changes do not address their main grievance: corruption, much of it directed by local party officials far below the radar of the central government in Beijing.
"I don't think this will give us more protection," said a farmer in the village of Xianyi, two hours' drive from Hebu, who gave his surname as Li. "We have no expectations. We just hope the government will not further take away our land, because we live on the land. If it's sold, we will lose our livelihoods."
In fact, illegal land seizures by cadres looking to profit from development - the biggest corruption issue in the farming areas - was left completely unaddressed by the "reform." In fact, lack of accountability for corruption is still the hallmark of CCP "governing" - even as the most visible example, the export poison fiasco, continues to spread in North America (Epoch Times).
Meanwhile, in another place far away from the Potemkin cities, cadres used police to silence concerned parents upset at a school teacher's harassment of their daughter (she was driven to suicide). The heavy-handed tactics brought 10,000 into the streets of Suqian, Jiangsu (Epoch Times).
Even outsiders are getting wise to the Communists' game. Leading IT firms are reaching out to human rights activists to create a framework for protecting online speech (Boycott 2008), and South Korea and Mongolia continue to side with those persecuted by the colonial viceroy (One Free Korea).
How do I know the cadres are really going through a rough patch? They're dropping hints about talks with the Dalai Lama again (BBC and CNN), which they only do when they're looking for some quick positive publicity on the cheap . . .
. . . the sort of thing they thought they would get with the land reform.