Date
21 August 2017
Chinese President Xi Jinping's book of speeches is reminiscent of Mao Zedong's Red Book of the Cultural Revolution era. Photo: Xinhua, wikimedia
Chinese President Xi Jinping's book of speeches is reminiscent of Mao Zedong's Red Book of the Cultural Revolution era. Photo: Xinhua, wikimedia

Nation in speechless admiration of Xi’s book of speeches

The brown-noser can also rake in hefty profits.

The secret here is to work for a state-owned propaganda organ, compile and publish materials for top leaders, like a newly-published book of speeches by China’s president.

The official news agency Xinhua reports that the Collection of Important Speeches by Party Secretary General Xi Jinping, complied by the publicity department of the Communist Party’s central committee and published by the People’s Press, has sold more than 10 million copies nationwide since its release in June.

“The book is warmly welcomed by party members, officials and the masses across the country. Xi’s speeches are highly thoughtful, pertinent and practical and can serve as our powerful arms of thought,” Xinhua said.

It is said that local governments at all levels have organized numerous learning sessions and seminars to promote the book in a wave by cadres to show political allegiance to Xi.

This has prompted some observers to compare the book to Quotations from Chairman Mao Zedong (also called the “Red Book”) that was published numerous times in the thick of the Cultural Revolution in the 1960s — everyone, not only party members, were told to recite Mao’s speeches and writings back then.

Another collection named Zhijiang Xinyu, which includes Xi’s speeches and writings during his tenure as Zhejiang provincial party chief, has been published by the Zhejiang People’s Press.

Netizens complained on the internet that no one will buy the ideological brainwashing stuff. But circulation is the least thing these publishers will be worried about, as local officials will use taxpayers’ money to buy these books and give them to party members, never mind that the books, like many in the past, will be cast on a shelf and covered in dust for good.

Overseas media reports say Xi’s Red Book, priced at 25 yuan (US$4.07), has helped the People’s Press rake in no less than 100 million yuan in net profit.

The press, just like the People’s Daily, is a communist party organ that is exclusively authorized to publish collections of speeches and writings by present and former party and state leaders. Selected Speeches by Jiang Zemin, a three-volume installment published in 2006, sold 100 million copies.

–Contact the writer at [email protected]

JL

EJ Insight writer

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