Tests for Migrants to Settle in Beijing? Chinese Reactions

Wen Guowei, Professor of Institute of Architectural and Urban Studies, Tsinghua University

From Sina:

Tsinghua Professor Suggests: Migrants Who Want to Settle in Beijing Should Take Tests


“If migrants want to get a Beijing hukou, they can be audited by examination”

Journalist: How can we construct a scientific channel [to control the influx and population of migrants to Beijing and inhibit the “ruralization” or degradation of civic behavior and norms in urban areas]?

Wen Guowei: There are many ways for this. For instance, if the migrant population wants to get a Beijing hukou, we can consider conducting audits through exams. This examination should consist of several parts, including tests of educational level, of legal knowledge, of work capability and so on. [If they want to] work in Beijing, we can also refer to international experience, establishing a “work-permit system”. where those without a work-permit are “working illegally” and dealt with [punished].

College graduates could be seen as educationally qualified; having a stable job would signify qualification of work capability. Meanwhile as city residents, some basic knowledge of laws and regulations is a must. This whole series of exams wouldn’t be measured by just the public security bureau itself with regards to whether or not you’re qualified to get a hukou but instead approved by a specialized [government] organization.

For those who already have a Beijing hukou, there still exists the problem of re-education. This includes education at school, education at the work place, education of law enforcement and the guiding role of the media. [Such continuing/re-education] must persevere, so that the urban/city residents have the character befitting that of city residents.

Even so, there will still be a group of people who do not fall into categories of management, and this group will have to be strictly managed. For those who have caused the phenomenon of ruralization [bringing rural habits/norms into the city], such as those without appropriate character [behavior as an urban resident], we must ask them to get out. Living environments where vile phenomenon has already formed should be progressively cleaned up to restore the order a city should have. Of course we cannot violently drive people out, but instead disperse them to other places according to the circumstances. When necessary, the government could also step in and build some temporary housing to solve their temporary housing problems.

Journalist: “De-ruralization” would inevitably bring about a problem, which is that the cost of living for city residents would also increase, as there is an objective market demand for small vendors and peddlers.

Wen Guowei: This is still the problem of sense. Actually everyone knows clearly that the goods offered by unlicensed peddlers are of poor quality. For example when you eat at a street-side stall, [there will be] problems of gutter oil and food additives, and everything you put into your mouth is unsafe. Those who consume these foods, most are also outside migrant populations, so should this kind of low-class health-damaging style of consumption be encouraged by our policy?

Considering the cost of living issue, at the center of our city are areas with certain historical and cultural traditions that could completely develop into commercial networks featuring century-old shops [successful businesses]. When I say century-old shops here, it doesn’t necessarily mean their prices can be raised without limit. Take the snack shops around the Huguosi Temple as an example: low prices, guaranteed quality, this can completely be achieved, and the government could also provide financial support. As long as management [of the shops] is good, and [the owners] change from an way of operating that seeks nothing but profit, the costs for this kind of shop could be even lower than the unlicensed peddlers and thus squeeze the unlicensed peddlers out of the market.

On the other hand, there are some problems with the notions of development/growth that some legitimate [licensed] time-honored shops/brands have at present, [such as] a steamed filled bun (baozi) being sold for 8 or 9 kuai, far in excess of their cost. Once such a mode of operation has been established, it would definitely push many people to buy the low-end, cheap [goods] and create opportunities for unlicensed peddlers.

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In addition, the government should also make policies to guide enterprises to solve related problems. I have a friend who has a designing institute in Haikou, a company with about 20 people. Every day they cook for themselves, with one pot and one stove, the entire thing [issue of eating] taken care of, nor are the costs aren’t high, and it’s healthy/sanitary too. The problem of feeding employees is solved, virtually squeezing the market for unlicensed peddlers, which is objectively beneficial for de-ruralization.

Journalist: Besides the problem of eating, there’s also the problem of housing.

Wen Guowei: For those migrants with normal jobs, their housing doesn’t necessarily need to be multiple families living in one compound or group renting. Why do recent university graduates insist on group renting living in a single room? Can we not offer low-rent housing to these people? We could even build some collective dormitories and flats for singles, and it’ll solve the problem. We can also encourage companies to build some dormitories for their employees, such as adding light-steel structures as dormitories on the roofs of their office buildings, the provide housing for their employees.

These problems are not impossible to solve, but the relevant departments [authorities] have been slow to deal with them. I can’t help but wonder, is it because the problem is too small? That the relevant authorities have little motivation to go handle them?

Let’s take another example of seeking medical treatment that we often talk about. It cannot be solved simply by driving all the wai di ren out. But why can’t we have the medical resources of big cities like Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou spread to the other regions? Can we ask doctors in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou to spend one year out of every three practicing in other regions, to help improve the level of medical care in those areas? I think doing this can blunt the problem of non-locals/outsiders excessively coming to Beijing for medical care. But still we have to ask: Who should be in charge of handling this problem?

Survey results on Sina for: “What’s your opinion on the suggestion of having people who want to settle in Beijing first take tests?”

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Sina survey results on whether or not migrants should take tests before they are allowed to settle in Beijing and obtain Beijing huou (household registry).

Comments from Sina:


Oh my, with such a professor, how could [Tsinghua] still become a top university?


If Beijing requires examination, then what about Shanghai? What about Tianjin? What about the other cities? This is personal interests disguised as anti-urbanization. And what’s this about rural peasants having poor character? I think it’s you that has poor character, and your morality is even worse!


Actually, cracking the problem of Beijing’s population and traffic problem is very simple: Scatter all the top universities (especially Beijing/Peking University, Qinghua/Tsinghua University and the like) and large state-owned enterprises to third-tier small-medium cities, which will not only spur the development of small cities but also relieve the burden on the Capital, and we can avoid having to test and spend money. Wouldn’t that be wonderful?


Maybe we can have tests, but Beijing locals have to take the tests with those from outside Beijing, with those who pass getting to stay and those who don’t having to move away. It’s rare to have the opportunity to stand on the same starting line and thus have a fair competition with the people of the imperial capital!!!


First have those who currently have Beijing hukou take the exams, and those who don’t pass have their Beijing hukou revoked.


In the future, those from Beijing who go to other places should also have to take a test… and if they don’t, they can’t enter. :D


Are all eight generations of your ancestors Beijingers [locals, suggesting that most people in Beijing migrated there at one point in time and thus have no right to restrict others]???


I suggest dividing all the cities in our country into 3, 6, 9 tiers, and have all citizens collectively take tests, and classify the cities according to the scores. One small exam every three years, one big exam every five years, ten years a circle. Not only will this improve the characters/quality of the whole population, it’s yet one more channel with which government officials can make money.

What do you think? Is having a test in order to qualify for residency (or to obtain legal residence) in a certain place a reasonable policy for that place to control population and aspects of the local living environment?

  • David

    Sometimes I think they interview these professors just to get socking comments. They seemed to have learned sensationalism very well from western news agencies. I will admit I was

  • David

    Nicely surprised by the number of people who disagreed with him. After reading all the comments about migrant workers it is nice ot know people understand their place in cities.

  • slob

    They should introduce these tests for every city in the country.

    • lacompacida

      And all cities in the world, for Chinese immigrants only.

      • Eidolon

        You have no idea, do you? Chinese immigrants DO have to undergo rigorous testing to settle in another country, especially Western countries. It is only after they become citizens – a process that again involves a test – that they are treated in the same way natives are.

        Rich countries don’t just accept random international migrants. By the same token, rich cities in China don’t just accept random internal migrants. Beijing isn’t capable of supporting everyone who wants to move there. The same goes for all the other metropolitan centers of China. Over population within a city driven by rapid rural migration leads to the creation of urban slums, which leads to cyclical poverty at economic centers and subsequent capital flight. Every urban planner worth their salt wants to avoid such a process.

        The professor’s solution is merely a patch up job. Ultimately, hukou restrictions are the product of uneven development, which is in turn the product of structural weaknesses within China’s economy – for example the lack of efficient infrastructure in inland China. These issues have to be resolved for the hukou system to be put to rest.

  • radbab

    not surprising he suggests this route, given that the hukou system basically creates states within a state, creating 1st and 2nd class citizens in turn. Getting citizenship of some western countries is already easier than getting Beijing or Shanghai “citizenship”.

    • lacompacida

      And professors, especially professors in Tsinghua, think they are higher class than the rest.

      • David

        The intelligentsia elite has been around in every Chinese dynasty, why should this one be any different.

  • Guest23

    The Rural vs Urban thing is getting way out of hand, they blame a lot of problems on migrant workers, glad tons of people disagreed cause its pretty sucks in the rural areas and this test thing is kinda stupid, bringing social norms and behaviors to the cities is kinda moot with the general attitude there. They should at least try to make it attractive or even economically viable to stay in rural towns and provinces.

    • radbab

      this “we’re better than you” attitude is so ridiculous. Even more funny when they start talking about harmonious society and “one China”. Yeah sure let’s all hold hands and pretend we’re all a big happy Chinese family, but my hukou is still better than yours, migrant scum! ;)

      • Guest23

        It’s pretty much Nationalism brings everyone together kinda thing, then after that, everyone proceeds to eat each other up…damn shame.

      • Germandude


        • linette lee

          hahaha..lol you are funny.

          You know when I don’t feel like speaking in the public areas, the laowai in USA say….”oh..you are Chinese? You don’t speak English?” Like they assume if you are Chinese and you don’t speak too much meaning you just don’t understand English. lol
          Then he will just speak really slow in English to me thinking if he speaks English slower I would understand him all the sudden. lol…hahah..
          I pretend I don’t speak English when I don’t feel like socializing. lol. But then again they just keep on talking.

          • Bob

            hahahaha, you think the laowai in the USA are the Americans…… you’re the laowai……. silly laowai

          • linette lee

            No, for chinese the word laowai means people who are not chinese. For you folks laowai means foreigners. We just can’t agree with the meaning of the word laowai can we?

            For me = Chinese or nonchinese(laowai)

            For you = Local or foreigner(laowai)

          • Atlas

            My grandpa used to say niggers for black people. I told him it was wrong and racist and he told me:

            For me = Whites or non-white (niggers)

            For you = Human beings vs animals (niggers)


          • linette lee

            hahahahahahha..lol you are good.

          • Mony Xie

            Why you reply to yourself?

          • Atlas

            Atlas and Alex are two different names.

            Also: Why you no use proper grammar?

          • Mony Xie

            I was replying to linette lee. Why you care?

          • Atlas

            Why you no learn English?

          • Mony Xie


          • Probotector

            It’s weird, because you Chinese don’t consider Japanese and other East Asians to be laowai, but they’re not Chinese.

            Therefore, ‘laowai’ means “anyone not racially Han Chinese-looking”, and is typically applied to white people, no matter where they are in the world. This means ‘laowai’ is a racist word after all. However, “waddashack” and “jin” were telling me it’s not racist, Hmn…

            You Chinese are duplicitous, aren’t you?

            At least ‘yang guizi’ is honest, so why not just bring that term back out of the closet? After all, it is what you guys really mean, right?

          • Zappa Frank

            we have a similar word in europe, extracomunitarian, that litterally means from out of UE, oddly it doesn’t apply to americans, canadians, australians and so on (that for sure are from out europe).. but just to people comming from asia and africa, south america (but basically it applies to non white and out of our culture). It doesn’t have really an offensive meaning, but can be used in an offensive way with an intended meaning of “barbarian” and uncivilized people.

          • Probotector

            I’m from Europe, and I’ve never heard of that word. Now, I’m not calling you a liar, but it is obviously not a commonly used word, unlike laowai, which is the standard way that Chinese address, well, basically only white people.

          • Germandude

            I think extracomunitarian = Non-European or Third country?

          • Zappa Frank

            from where? because england is technically out of europe too. Anyway in Italy we use it a lot. I forgot to add that also easter europeans are called in that way. The meaning and the use is basically the same of laowai

          • Probotector

            To be honest, I haven’t been into the continent much, only twice ever, so I don’t know what people think of each other. I know that in my country, we welcome continentals, including from the former Eastern bloc, way too much.

            In any case, my point still stands, laowai is a far more overused term.

          • Zappa Frank

            maybe i’m wrong and this expression is more an italian things, here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extracomunitarian

            i guess it’s a way of refering to unkonwn people tipical of narrow mind countries. In many ways italy has something in common with china, but unlucky just bad things.

          • Mateusz82

            For everyone = Word used by racists (whether racist due to ignorance, or being douchebags).

            There. Settled.

          • Germandude

            If somebody talks to you slowly, just reply as slow as he does. If he notices that you are making fun of him and he asks why, just reply: “Oh, I thought you took some valium…”

          • linette lee

            I just smile because I didn’t want to be too rude neither. But that probably send out the wrong signal. They talk even more.
            The worst thing is on the plane. The person sit next to me just keeps on talking the whole trip. Eventually I couldn’t take it and talk back. “ooooohhhhh….I thought you don’t understand me……” lol.
            I wear headphone also listening to music or I pretend I am sleeping. That works the best.

    • donscarletti

      I think it’s amazing just how many vices can be considered “rural”.

      In China, one hears things a very different way to in the west, “dirty and rural” rather than “idyllic countryside”. When a place is referred to as “偏”, which often just means suburban, it is expected to be poor, dirty and dangerous.

      Countryside in my mind, having largely grown up in small country towns, is meant to mean somewhere clean, with green fields, farmhouses and cottages with nice little gardens and a general absence of the general grit you get in the city. Country folk, despite their generally narrower intellectual horizons are meant to be honest people who are courteous because of the knowledge that they will soon encounter the same people again.

      Big mouthed Tsinghua professors should be thinking not about keeping the city safe from the country folk, but fixing whatever the hell is wrong with the countryside in China. The continued public display of contempt towards the country and its denizens is certainly not the first step in doing that.

      • Guest23

        Stereotypes are annoying, especially if people from the cities tend to view folks from the countryside as “rednecks” or “yokels” , the government tends to develop everything exclusively towards the urbanized cities unless your towns or provinces can help in the economy, tourism or resource-wise, and those professors tend to be experts on things they are not.

      • mwanafa

        Yeah it’s true, my school is in the middle of the city but I chose a house very far from there, actually in the suburbs. They always ask me why I chose to stay there, the answer is very simple “Fresh air, not crowded, cheaper, quiet, clean, etc”.

      • David

        I will admit to how much this surprised me when I first got to China. Speaking with Chinese friends (in Wuxi where I live) I would comment about living outside the city (I live in the suburbs in America). Somebody would inevitably make a comment about how dirty and dishonest (not to mention dangerous) the countryside is. Of course in the U.S. the city is normally associated more with dirty and dangerous and the countryside with fresh and friendly.

        • Kai

          Heh, my suburban home in the States is derisively (but jokingly) referred to as “living in the mountains” by Chinese people here. What makes the “countryside” (or more accurately, the suburbs) of the West so seemingly “idyllic” is that it’s largely populated by the middle class whereas in China, the countryside is largely populated by poverty and abject poverty. In the West, we have “white flight” from inner city slums and ghettos. The West went through what China is going through now. It’s just past it and maybe China will one day get past it too depending on how the cities are managed.

          • David

            good point about the income levels.

        • Germandude

          Same experience for me. City-folks are stressed and don’t have time to play it nice, while in the smaller cities/towns/villages, the pace is different and personal relations matter more.
          However, a guy from Northern Germany wouldn’t go to a city in Southern Germany and treat/or be treated like shit as it often happens in China. Same for the US afaik.

  • mr.wiener

    I’m trying to imagine the screams of outrage that would result from this kind of suggested policy in the west.

    • Probotector

      Are you sure it wouldn’t it be met with outrage in China?

      Let’s see…

    • Agreed. Don’t these tsinghua professors have any lectures to give, or do they just get paid for putting their foot in mouth online all the time?

      • Maddy

        My friend is studying law at Qinghua right now and she says all the professors do is boast about their achievements and how great they are…doesn’t surprise me really.

        • Probotector

          Ironic, since most professors in China don’t hold a doctorate, or at least one based on original research.

          I once had a female boss who supposedly had a PhD in coal mine safety, but it’s unlikely her dissertation was based on anything credible since women in China aren’t even allowed to enter a coal mine, let alone anything else related to the field. I suppose that’s why the university could only give her the job of managing the laowais.

          • 二奶头发

            Coal mine safety summary:

            If the canary is dead get out of the mine oh and wear this hat with the light on it.

          • Riddler

            PhD? Passed Highschool with Difficulty.

          • David

            Piled Higher and Deeper

          • Bear

            So you need to enter coal mines to do a PhD in coal mine safety?

            By that logic, does this mean that astrophysicists need to visit the stars to do a PhD in astronomy?

            Perhaps aspiring developmental economists all over the world need to live in Bangladeshi slums to do their PhDs in development?

            I think you need to get a college degree before making claims about people who do higher level degrees, you uneducated buffoon.

          • Probotector

            Uh, already got a degree you abusive idiot. The point is, she couldn’t have done much work in the field. safety research is a vocational discipline, wherein entering the environment you are researching is essential to making any useful progress in it’s understanding, especially for a PD, which is supposed to demonstrate original research.

      • Bear

        With a name like ‘Hussein’, sounds like you are the typical immigrant bottom feeder that the developed world could do without.

        • Probotector

          That statement sounds racist, you hypocrite.

        • Allah akbah, my dear boy.

    • jon

      like how we have citizenship tests?

      • mr.wiener

        No, if we tested rural citizens of our own countries in order to allow them to live in the city, that would cause howls of outrage.

        Even testing foreigners got a bit weird at times in Australia, but was accepted as a necessary evil, people were taking the piss out of it something bad [lampooning it mercilessly].
        “So Abdul, if your mate shouts you a beer, how are you expected to pay him back?”
        “I can’t drink beer, could I purchase him a coffee?”
        “Wrong answer! go to the back of the line.

        • Hahaha, love that one!!!!

        • Germandude

          Lmao… Aussies for life

        • jon

          The demographics of Australia and China are too different to warrant a comparison. Less than 10% of Australians live in non-urbanized areas, so the outback population is not really an issue for urban dwellers. In China the percentage of rural-urban dwellers are about 50/50. Coupled with the huge differences in standard of living and a population 60 times that of Australia, people should understand that adapting to urban life (or even the right to live in the cities) is a gradual process.

          China is a country where the richest city is richer than New York and the poorest rivaling parts of Somalia, with a population larger Europe, US, Russia, Canada, Australia and Japan put together. The gradual dismantle of hukou system requires time and planning, and tests are just a way to help filter the system. It is a step in the right direction, though not an ultimate solution.

          If Australia had a population of 1 billion people, you might not be so quick to judge based on tests and permits.

          • mr.wiener

            Not comparing China to Oz, the difference is too large, The bit about Oz immigration was a humorous aside.
            But If you want to compare China with any other country….well no other country treats their peasants like this. Neglects them, yes. Murders them, yes, But China would be about the only place where you are told where you can live based on where you were born ..I could be wrong [please tell me if I am].
            Some say China is too big to rule kindly, I hope this changes.

          • jon

            Yes, that’s the point. China isn’t like any other country, and should not be compared to as such. Imagine ruling a country that has the population of of South America and Africa combined, or an amalgamation of the US, Canada, Europe and Japan and Russia, with a fraction of its resources. When such a nation comes into existence I’d like to see people preach equality and freedom to traverse wherever and whenever.

            Your comment on hukou is a common misinterpretation, but the system as of now does allow one to change his/her hukou based on education and special circumstances. It’s difficult, but it can be done. As an aside, I’d rather have a country tell me where I can live based on where I was born (which is no longer practiced in China, if you have enough $) than being “neglected” and “murdered”, as you put it.

        • lonetrey / Dan

          I laughed a little harder than I should have at that -___-

  • Wololoo

    I don’t see any point, where the professor is wrong.

    • lacompacida

      Did you take his classes ? That may explain your failure in seeing the point.

  • Repatriated

    Chinese sure do love their tests. This whole hukou testing idea is kinda stupid in that the “best answers” to the test will be on the internet the day after the test is introduced…

    • radbab

      training preparation classes, consultants, text books, bribery and corruption, jobs for tutors an testers – just think of the economic stimulus! ;)

  • 5000 years of history

    China- leading the way in racism, bigotry and just plain ole stupidity since 2500 BC

    • lacompacida

      Only 2500 BC ? I thought they have 5000 years of history. Did you cut a century off that ?

      • mopedchi

        2500 BC + 2013 AD = 4513

      • Lord_Helmet


  • Observer

    How can the government still call themselves Communist? I understand this article wasn’t about a government quote, but anyone can just look at the state of the political and social system and know that Communism in China is a lie.

    This sort of attitude would have been condemned half a century ago (please not that i’m not agreeing with communism, I’m simply pointing out that the government is doing a terrible job of disguising their intentions)

    • David

      I disagree. I think it is in perfect line with many millennium of having an educated elite and a uneducated peasantry. It was present in all the previous dynasties as well as the Nationalist era. The only time it was really absent was during the warlord times (and that had its own set of horrible problems). About the only time the Communists did anything along real egalitarian lines was in the late 1920’s and early 1930’s before they joined with the nationalist (before splitting with them) and came to power.

      • Kai

        Dude, even in the Warlord times it was like that. I’d say there were some good egalitarian efforts after they came to power. It more or less fell apart as Mao became arguably increasingly petty and narcissistic over the years.

        • David

          I will agree that many of the old leaders actually had good intentions toward the people (even Mao) after 1949 but very quickly the problems of running a huge country while trying to work around the problem of corruption at the lower levels (appointed commune and later village cadres) led to incredible corruption at the higher levels. Even Deng (who was twice himself “re-educated”) could allow economic reforms to grow but in the end could not pull the trigger on the type of political reforms (i.e. 1989 crackdown) that would have made a real difference to the common people (like elections above the local level).

          Anyway, we can agree that Mao did get weird and paranoid in his old age (leading directly to that abysmal failure called the Cultural Revolution) in an effort to rid himself of the intellectual elite.

    • Mony Xie

      They don’t. They call it Socialism with Chinese characteristics.

    • JL

      With the same straight face that Western governments call themselves “Representative” Democracies.

  • MrC

    Who the fck in their right mind would want to settle down in Beijing.

    • Probotector

      Xi Jinping

    • Riddler

      American artillery?

      • MrC

        they should be able to hit it.big enough.

  • garbo

    Why don’t they improve education and infrastructure outside cities?

    • lacompacida

      Because that doesn’t make money for government officials.

      • Alex

        exactly, no money incentive there, nothing in it for them, a logical selfless act like that is completely unheard for those Audi driving f**ktards! Really going through China-hate issues at the moment, hopefully will pass soon.

        • Nessquick Choco

          I have seen nice move here in SH. As many people always complain about “black Audi” drivers skills, there is more and more white Audis in the city :-) :-)))

    • PixelPulse

      Because then they wouldnt have a scapegoat.

    • Kai

      Good question. They arguably want to and are trying to but there are only so many resources to go around. There’s always the arguments of where limited resources will do the most good for the most people, as well as the inescapable reality that some places have disproportionate representation and influence in order to get the limited resources ahead of others.

      However, there’s also arguably an overall policy for improving living conditions and living standards in China through urbanization, which is literally the idea of centralizing more of the population into higher-density urban centers where there can be more efficient distribution of resources with a smaller ecological footprint. I’m not just talking about utilities like providing electricity, water, and sewage but also goods and services as well as mass transit.

      There was a TED talk about this but I forgot by who so I haven’t found it yet through a Google search. Of course, I should also say there are TED talks against urbanization and megacities as well so this isn’t an issue or policy without dispute but the arguments and rationale (for both sides) are interesting to consider.

      People sort of naturally gravitate to the cities for greater options and resources tend to be diverted to where most people are. In turn, those outside the cities tend to look toward the cities and take their cues from them, sometimes enjoying a trickle down effect. The Nationalists coddled their city bases while Communists took to the countryside, but with China’s economic reforms, cities once again became bases of power and engines of growth and development.

      Urbanization has its problems too, and one of them is what the above issue is all about. China is urbanizing but they want to control the rate of urbanization so city resources and services don’t collapse before they can be built up to accomodate rising urban populations. So we have the hukou system that artificially ties people’s access to certain pubic goods like education to certain locales so they don’t all just flock to where they prefer. So we also have locals seething with resentment that “outsiders” are competing for their resources, therefore advocating political and legal obstacles to stem or reverse the tide of incoming migrants. All people acting in their own self-interest.

      One thing they’re trying to do right now to ease population pressure and congestion in the major cities is to build up satellite cities around them, with mass transit links in between for mobility. The underlining strategy is still centralization, still urbanization, but more of the high-density “megacity” style than the low-density suburban white-flight style found around much of America’s large cities (for example).

      Hope this answer helps.

    • bprichard

      Good luck with that. China has a shortage of qualified teachers as it is, and how are you going to convince college educated people to move out to these villages where the quality of life is abysmal? There aren’t enough altruists in the world to make that work, and I can’t even imagine the salary premium that would be required to convince people to take those jobs.

  • Repatriated

    Question 1. How is the air in BJ today?
    a. Perfect. It’s so clean I want to cry.
    b. Great.
    c. Not so good
    d. Ugh, I can’t breath!

    Correct answer: a. Perfect. it’s so clean I want to cry.
    Alternate acceptable answer: b. Great.

    • YourSupremeCommander

      Correct answer: I do not like air, I like my BJ wet and sloppy.

    • lacompacida

      Correct Answer: You have the Party looking after you so well, why do you need air ? Air is irrelevant.

      • Repatriated

        Scrounging out the posters that haven’t lived in China…and don’t get the sarcasm.

  • donkeykong

    “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others”.

    • David

      the basis for 5000 years of civilization.

  • 用开水烫我!

    it’s funny, at lest his wish is good.

  • Taoran

    Maybe I’m the only one here to think this way, but I actually believe that this idea isn’t so bad. Maybe it has to do with the fact that in my country there are this kind of exams for foreigners who wish to obtain the nationality.
    The problem is that China’s economy develops much faster than the society. Too many people want to live in the big cities, so why not take advantage of the fact that there is an omnipotent government which can implement such a system if they want… the one-child policy also isn’t fair to the individual but may have some merit when looking at the bigger picture.
    Of course this would need to be implemented for several big cities, not only Beijing, as was pointed out somewhere.
    Maybe this could even help to reduce the common hostility/racism towards non-locals because they would now have a “certification” of their “high quality”.
    The huge problem in all of this of course is that the locals probably wouldn’t be tested (as many chinese commenters pointed out), which probably reduces the effectiveness of this measure considerably.

    • mwanafa

      Well, I see the point, but…
      The exams in your country tests foreign nationals, not locals. No country will allow scumbags to migrate to their country, but will tolerate their own citizens scumbags and at least put some measures to educate them. One thing for sure is that China does not put a good job in educating their own citizens. They put much effort in censorship and blocking other forms of freedom and education.
      The test itself will never be effective, e.g will Li Tianyi qualify for the test? and what about the likes of him and other forms of those who do have money, power but poor in social norms and morality?

      • Probotector

        Actually, most western countries prefer foreign scumbags to their own law-abiding citizens.

      • Taoran

        I understand that they are all Chinese, no foreigners. I didn’t expect that I would use this argument myself one day, but: the size of China my justify such measures… there need to be more levels of hierarchy in order to govern such a size.
        Also, I don’t think that the Li Tianyi argument is valid here as we’re talking about a general policy. There will always be exceptions. If some rich and educated people actively decide to be assholes, there is nothing that an exam can do against that.

        • mwanafa

          OK, now let me ask you one question my friend, What’s the test for?
          I think Li tianyi argument as an example is very valid here.
          Talking about being a big country to justify this is not so valid here because the government is not just in Beijing alone. Even very remote places in China there is a very huge presence of government and government officials. It’s very easy for them to manage their population, much more than any country in the world (I am not kidding).
          And you know even if there is a test, there still will be a lot of waidiren staying in Beijing. It’s not that if you don’t have a hukou you can not stay there, so whatever is happening in Beijing now, will still be happening after they put this system. That’s why I say the only solution is to give better education to their citizen. Not just learning leifeng and Chairman maos concepts everyday.

          • Taoran

            I agree with your final point about education, that’s absolutely true.

            I’m not going to discuss the presence or power of the government because I don’t feel sufficiently knowledgable on that topic.

            But I don’t understand what you mean about the Li Tianyi argument being very valid, so I will try to make my own reasoning clearer. I call the argument “not valid” because the goal of this policy would not be to prevent cases like him, and therefore you can’t call it a bad policy just because it wouldn’t prevent cases like him.

          • mwanafa

            Oh I see, Li Tianyi is involved in many issues not only rape but also underage driving, driving without license, beating people, driving under influence and so on and so on.
            The rape case happened after he served in a juvie. Now are you going to qualify a poor hard working immigrant a hukou, or a rich and educated but irresponsible, above the law, spoiled, drunkard, trouble making, son of a pigeon?

      • Germandude

        “No country will allow scumbags to migrate to their country, but will tolerate their own citizens scumbags and at least put some measures to educate them”

        Never been to Europe, huh?

        • mwanafa

          I assume you don’t agree with the whole part that you copied and paste. Let me clarify this:-
          1.No country will allow scumbags to migrate to their country. I don’t think that if I go to ??if you are referring to the whole of Europe or some parts?? embassy and tell them that I am a scumbag who wants to migrate to your country they will allow me to.
          2.but will tolerate their own citizens scumbags may be they don’t tolerate German scumbags but at least they do in my country.(it’s in Europe.)
          3.and at least put some measures to educate them don’t they? don’t they have juvie and correction facilities in Germany? I don’t think so.
          You obviously missed the whole point and jump into conclusion, I didn’t say there aren’t foreign scumbags in other countries, I am just saying that they will allow you to migrate if they don’t know that you are a scumbag(people can lie, can pretend till they get what they want.). But as the whole topic goes, this explains that the test itself will not be effective.

          • Kai

            I think he’s making a joke. There’s resentment amongst some Europeans that their countries/governments allow too many immigrants, tolerate more or are more forgiving of immigrant scumbags than their own, put the interests of immigrants above their own, and don’t enact enough measures to educate these new immigrants.

          • vincent_t

            Hey we are talking about Europe! Not Singapore ok!

          • Kai

            Hah, it’s not an uncommon sentiment in many places.

          • Germandude

            Point 1: Usually, the scumbags that immigrate to Europe are immigrating to the countries with a good social security system and a rather welcoming atmosphere. I am not refering to whole Europe here but more of central Europe. Why is e.g. Croatia/Romania/Serbia not complaining about African immigrants? Because they wouldn’t get much support by the government and would rather fall victim of racism there than e.g. in France, Germany, the Netherlands or Italy. While in those countries, they will get a pretty good package of housing and money to live. Not in luxury, but still better than from the situation they were in in their home countries.

            Point 2: I don’t really understand this point of yours. However, if you have checked the “laissez-faire” attitude of France, Germany, Netherlands, Italy and some other countries regarding criminals (no matter if foreigner or not), you understand that many people have a problem with accepting the immigration of low-educated foreigners that are immigrating under false promises of “hey, come to Europe, everything is free and you don’t need to do anything” from smugglers in e.g Africa. The awakening upon arrival is shocking because a) cultural differences, b) their education (if any) from their home countries means nothing in the new countries, or c) there are hardly any consequences. It’s known that many immigrants are having police reports with 100+ crimes and they still are not sent back because of political correctness.

            Point 3: Europe fails on the point of education. On the one hand, we allow immigrants to get a house and money to live, but don’t support education and actually FORCE immigrants to learn the local language. We do that out of political correctness, because forcing them is bad. While in fact, it would be the right thing to do. Many politicians in Germany with a turkish background (like 2nd/3rd generation turkish) are complaining about the integration of turkish in a tone that if you heard them talking on the radio, you think you are listening to a hardcore Nazi group. There is only so much you can do to integrate people. Real integration however requires you to integrate yourself and accustom yourself to language, culture and the law.

            Political correctness is breaking the backbone of Europe. Unlike Canada, the US and Australia, Europe doesn’t have a greencard system and attracts qualified foreigners. No. We open the doors for people to come in and pay for them to stay in their position so that on the one hand we can say “At least we are trying to help” and on the other hand secure our own jobs.
            If you ask me, that whole Lampedusa disaster is also just a farce. Instead of spending billions in Europe to attract foreigners to immigrate and stay at the bottom end of society, that money would be better spent on improving the situation in Africa so that people actually see a future in their home countries. That would save money on catching illegal immigrants and put them into refugee camps which remind many off POW camps in WW 2.

            Then again, I am not a politician, nor am I a leading business man in Europe. Meaning, my word doesn’t count and I don’t belong to the group of people benefitting from this mess.

            No wonder that countries like Greece and France have such a strong right-wing at the moment with a positive view for the next elections. People are sick of this mess.

          • mwanafa

            Well said, I actually do not need that much explanation @disqus_qpFQtxPJyF:disqus if you go back to the point and see my explanation you will realize that you are actually duplicating my meaning, but with detailed comprehension.
            Here is the summary:
            Those people aren’t scum bags(or at least pretending not to be) when they are applying for the citizenship, and if they show the sign of being one they won’t be granted citizenship…. thus those countries do not allow scumbags
            See I did not say they are not allowed to live in, but they can’t pass citizenship test if they are known by official to be scumbags. Once they get one I am sure they will do whatever they can, live however they are, the main point is that those European countries have laws and restriction for the foreign scumbags, not that there are no foreign scumbags living there.
            Same as this point so are other points above you are drawing a flawed conclusion in order to make an argument, which if you read carefully is not needed.

          • Germandude

            Mate, I hope you don’t misunderstand me. I am not criticizing what you are saying and my initial post of “Never been to Europe, huh?” was more a statement of: Look how wrong Europe is in this. If you know what I mean.


          • mwanafa

            Well, what I couldn’t understand is why the post “Never been to Europe, huh?” was anyway related to what I said.

          • Germandude

            Because I think that parts of Europe are doing just that. No matter what’s your background, just enter.

            (We are ignoring the risks it brings out of political correctness and because of the fear of being labeled a racist. ESPECIALLY in Germany given its history).

          • Claude

            Just saw a TV report on Sweden giving Permanent residency to all Syrian refugees.

          • Germandude

            Didn’t the swedish government announce that it would be granting permanent residency to any Syrian refugee that ALREADY FLED TO Sweden?

          • Claude

            Correct. Sorry for not making that clear.

          • Germandude

            No problem. It’s just a pretty important difference. Germany did the same (for a lower number of immigrants however). Just imagine what would happen tomorrow if today every country said “Please enter”.

          • mwanafa

            Oh about that, I get it. But seriously may be you haven’t seen much of the people struggling to go to Europe, I worked in a visa section in Africa, it’s not like if you want to go you will go.
            Background check is hard in most of African countries, but to get a visa is very challenging and difficult. Refugees and student can get them easily though.

          • Germandude

            And it would be better if the smart people of Africa would actually do sth to improve the situation in their home countries. The brain-drain is killing the continent.

            I know, easier said than done.

          • mwanafa

            There is no strategy for development, even the razor blade produced there domestically will cost triple or even more times than imported one.

          • Kai

            I think there’s a bit of a language barrier issue here judging from the confusion in my own conversation with him.

            Fucking languages.

          • Germandude

            Not sure. Could be. I hope mwanafa understands that my comment “Never been to Europe, huh?” was not meant negative but more like a statement of “In Europe, we actually do that mistake”…

          • mwanafa

            I don’t think so, I just could not understand that was anyway related to my argument. If you can understand the following example:
            There is a bar named scarlet, It doesn’t allow single boys to get in
            And I say “Scarlet doesn’t allow single boys to get in”
            He says “You never been inside Scarlet huh?”
            I mean there may be many single boys inside Scarlet, who pretend to have a GF on the door in order to get in, but does that mean that Scarlet allows single boys in? I don’t think so.

          • Kai

            You said: Bars don’t allow single boys in.

            He said: You’ve never been to the Scarlett Bar, have you?

            What he’s saying is that the Scarlett Bar does allow single boys. It’s a joke that reflects his opinion about how well the Scarlett Bar prevents single boys from coming in.

            Your response to explain that the single boys pretended to be be boys with girlfriends in order to get in, even though they are actually single. The Scarlett Bar let them in because they though they were boys with girlfriends. Therefore, it is the single boys who deceived the Scarlett Bar so you can’t blame the Scarlett Bar.

            Germandude’s joke is that he does somewhat blame the Scarlett Bar because he thinks the Scarlett Bar can do more to determine who are single boys and prevent them from getting in.

            Hope this helps.

          • mwanafa

            Oh yeah, very good explanation, I totally missed that part(joke).

          • Germandude

            Let’s agree that we agreed on disagreeing while we disagree on having an agreement of disagreement.

        • Claude

          Yeah! Europe has some born and bred scumbags. Those scary characters that wear tracksuits in the streets when they’re not at the gym. They look like Croatian mercenary’s but they’re in the streets of Paris. I cross the street when I see them.

      • Kai

        Playing devil’s advocate here but the distinction between foreign nationals vs. citizens is fundamentally arbitrary and rests in the physical power to enforce it. It’s ultimately just “we are from here and you are from there”, so why can’t that dynamic extend to cities within countries? People in Beijing only need to point to Hong Kong for an example of a city that can regulate who gets to come and go. Sure, there are historical reasons for that, but it puts the idea of having such legal borders and official channels for granting or denying access (whether it be in a form of a test or not) into the realm of “well, why not?”

        A test at the end of the day is some notion of meritocracy and standardization. How effective it will be depends on what it is designed to weed out and encourage (are we talking about morality or bad habits like shitting on the streets?), and how fairly the system is actually administered. If schools can control admissions and access to their educational facilities and resources through standardized testing, why can’t cities? It’s just in-group vs. out-group and deciding who can join the group.

        I think we naturally revolt against the idea because it isn’t as common as it is seen in other forms we take for granted like college admissions, driving tests, health inspections, etc. At the end of the day, it’s all about controlling access and thus “quality”. If a country can disallow scumbags to migrate to their country, why can’t a city? It all rests on whether or not the city can get its way, or if a larger group of people (like the rest of a country) can stop it. It’s like residential communities ostracizing certain types of residents. Not fair but it’s a sort of democracy.

        • Taoran

          Thank you for writing down my thoughts so consicely :-)

    • Probotector

      “The problem is that China’s economy develops much faster than the society.”

      Well, whose fault is that?

      “…an omnipotent government…”

      Really? More like impotent. They can’t even get people to follow the law.

      “Maybe this could even help to reduce the common hostility/racism towards non-locals because they would now have a “certification” of their “high quality”.”

      I doubt that; Chinese people normally judge oneself on superficial appearance.

      • Taoran

        Ok. I pretty much agree with you, but I think this is a different issue. The top-level government is “omnipotent” as in it can make any kind of laws without justifying them to anyone. In terms of actual effect on the people the government may be seen as impotent because the lower levels fail to implement what the upper levels decide and too many laws are ignored without getting in trouble.
        I admit that in my first post I was kinda assuming a system where laws are followed once they are set, which seems a bit silly in hindsight.

  • mwanafa

    When other nations are struggling to break the wall of discrimination among it’s people, China is really struggling to build one. Waiguoren, Waidiren, Beijingren, Shanghairen, gaofushuai, baifumei, heiren, bairen, waijiao, the list goes on and on.

    • Kai

      Apples to oranges. This is just an example of some people trying to build walls in China, not an example of where the people are trying to break down walls (that would be those advocating for hukou reform). There are examples of both in other nations too. There’s plenty of discriminatory scare-mongering and calls against immigration or whatever, as well as labels for different groups of people.

      • David

        However, most countries do not call people of the same nationality who move from the country to cities migrant workers. Most western countries have a problem with people from other countries moving there in uncontrollable numbers (while there is certainly a need for some immigration to support the economy) but not so much of say a dairy farmer from Provence moving to Paris (although why would he want to lol).

        • Kai

          Er, to nitpick, the West doesn’t represent “most countries” but don’t get me wrong, I know what you mean. It’s just a dangerous mindset to think of the West as representing more of the world in juxtaposition to China than it actually does.

          Next, Western/developed countries DID when their societies were in that phase (or the phase China is in now). Or rather, they had their own terms. Some of the nicer ones were “County bumpkins” and “city-slickers”? City mouse and country mouse? It’s not even in the West either. It’s also true for quite developed places like Japan and Korea.

          China is behind the curve, but it is a curve that all countries are on.

          • mwanafa

            By this same logic Mr. Kai, you also mean that Africans should go back to iron age and develop slowly to this age. One thing I have known for sure is that “do not struggle to solve a problem that has already been solved.”
            This test means to redefined a Beijing person, not a Chinese, in which if I were a Chinese I will be deeply offended.

          • Kai

            What? What logic of mine suggests I think Africans should go back to the Iron Age? I think you misread or misunderstood me. What “same logic” are you referring to in what I wrote?

          • mwanafa

            “China is behind the curve, but it is a curve that all countries are on.”

            The logic of the curve, while on this you are referring to the social development, put it in economic development and you will find that out.

          • Kai

            What I’m saying is that there is a process in development and while China is behind in development, it doesn’t mean other countries who are ahead in development were always ahead or always at that point in development. They too were once were China was. By the same logic, African nations may be behind the curve compared to other nations, including China in some regards. Simply stating that there is a process doesn’t mean anyone “should go back” to anything.

          • mwanafa

            Yeah, and what I am saying is that China redefining a Beijing citizen now is sort of going back to dark ages.

          • Kai

            I’m not sure I’m following. The test is a suggestion for a “systematic” way Beijing can to grant or restrict access to getting a Beijing hukou that would entitle the holder to certain municipal resources like education and healthcare.

            Defining and having barriers for legal residence isn’t really a “dark ages” thing nor do I understand why you alluded to Africans earlier. As the professor said, this is similar to work-permits and visas. What’s different is what qualifications are required or tested for. That’s what’s potentially offensive, but the notion of requiring people to meet certain guidelines to have access to something is actually widespread in society. It’s just whether or not we’re comfortable extending it to something like this.

          • mwanafa

            You know me and you are looking at this in a complete different angle, that’s why we can never ever reach a consensus.

            You are taking “entitle the holder to certain municipal resources like education and healthcare.” as a very progressive movement towards social development, while I think it’s very backwards. To me a citizenship card will just be enough for one to be entitled to certain municipal resources like education and healthcare as long as it shows that he/she is Chinese.

            Education??? healthcare?? just for certain people?
            It’s backwards man, seriously.
            Now by issuing this test, to grant some few privileged ones those preferential treatment because they have BJ hukou, is that really what you development. I don’t think so, It’s like going back to that time.
            Afican economic development now is like the social development in China now.
            If China is still struggling with the hukou thing, you can just imagine African countries struggling with how to produce and who to provide electricity to.

          • Kai

            We may be looking at this from a different angle but we may also actually just be looking at (and thus talking about) different things.

            I don’t think the act of “entitling” someone to resources is a “very progressive moevement towards social development”. That’s not what I’m saying at all.

            I made a point about social development, yes, but it was in reference to something in what David wrote and it had nothing to do with assigning positive or negatives, just that different levels of social development is a fact of our world

            Like you, I’m comfortable with the idea that a person’s national citizenship should entitle them to services or resources that are guaranteed for all citizens. If the national government says all citizens should get compulsory k-12 education, anyone who is a citizen should be able to get it regardless of whether they are in some village in Anhui or Beijing. That’s what I’d like.

            The problem is when there aren’t enough resources to go around. In the United States, for example, there are school districts where you generally have to live in the school district in order to attend a certain school. If you don’t, tough luck, you go to the school in your district.

            This is a similar concept. People who aren’t residents of Beijing don’t get access to certain things. These people want legal residence in the form of a hukou, because they feel they ARE residing there, but the locals and the local government are reluctant to give it to them because they want to protect what they have. So the idea of a test is just a way to erect a hurdle against giving legal residency and thus access to their resources.

            I of course agree with the idea that education and healthcare only for certain people is backwards. I’m not advocating that all. I do however recognize that these are limited resources and there are practical real-world issues with how they are distributed and provided. This idea of a test is one way to control that distribution. It’s of course one way to benefits some at the expense of others. That’s why it’s a controversial issue that deserves discussion, hopefully towards finding a compromise that adequately addresses the concerns of all involved.

            Again, I’m not supporting the test. I don’t even know what the test would actually look like. I am however recognizing what the motivations and goals might be. I don’t like certain people getting preferential treatment in a general sense, but I recognize that it’s how the world is structured in so many often arbitrary ways.

            I think there’s a fundamental miscommunication or misunderstanding from the start of our conversation because I simply cannot understand how your African analogy applies to any argument I am actually making. China unfortunately is struggling with the hukou thing, just like African countries are struggling with how to distribute its resources too, but also just like how EVERY country struggles with it. The EU argues incessantly about what countries are bailing out which countries. The US hates California so much they have a joke in Congress when it comes to porkbarrel projects in the form of ABC (Anywhere But California).

            We can’t reach a consensus because you seem to think I’m saying something and I have no idea why you think I’m saying that. There might be some language issues. I know you’re trying to explain it to me. I hope you recognize that I’m trying my best to understand you and explain what I’m saying. Thanks.

          • mwanafa

            Well, it’s really getting hard to understand were you/we/I are heading to with this conversation.
            I just took a part of your words and name it a logic, I used that logic in another environment which I thought it will be easier to understand. Apparently it wasn’t easier but made things harder and now we are diverging from this point as we go. Now can you see that we can not reach conclusion?
            It’s like I am driving north and you are heading south. Let’s save our fingers and keyboards.

          • Kai

            Haha, I know you were trying to communicate in good faith. I think we’re just unable to understand each other at this point. Thanks for trying. Cheers.

      • mwanafa

        But seriously it’s very severe in China, and it’s encouraged rather than discouraged, I know it happens in other nations because it’s a human nature but the only difference is that it’s discouraged soon as it is known to be existing.

        • Kai

          I agree it’s a serious social issue (problem) in China but I’m not sure if it is “encouraged” in any official sense and only so by those who stand to benefit from it at their convenience. We’re just not used to this sort because many of the Western countries we come from and grew up in were past the urban vs. countryside dynamic in their economic development.

        • Zhao Xin

          Meanwhile the caste system of India.
          That aside, point is if you find the word “waijiao” offensive, you’d probably find “Dr.” or “Mr.” offensive as well.

  • 二奶头发

    Sorry sir.. you can’t come into this city because you are too stupid.

    • lacompacida

      Your professorship in Tsinghua confirms the diagnose of stupidity.

      • Riddler

        Influx of accumulated stupidity.

  • 二奶头发

    The next Great Wall of China will be build by policies not bricks.

    • Riddler

      bricks or pricks?

  • 二奶头发

    Instead of trying to stop people from entering big cities why doesn’t china encourage people to LEAVE big cities? or to not enter them at all

    They should offer education, monetary incentives and other incentives for Chinese to work and live in smaller communities. Like a rural living allowance. China is a big country with a HUGE population if they could spread out the population more it won’t feel as crowded.

    • Kai

      I answered a similar question above so I won’t repeat myself. I’ll add that there actually are some incentives for Chinese to work and live in smaller communities but they rarely offset living in larger communities. Notoriously, there are subsidies encouraging Han migration to certain Western regions, but far less notoriously there are also programs encouraging teachers to go work in rural areas, but arguably there is more “feel good” incentive than monetary incentive in those.

    • David

      Well, they did try to get people to leave big cities once, they called it The Great Leap Forward. This is what comes from command economics.

  • jon

    The professor is trying to suggest ways to remedy the issues of hukou’s restrictive nature, and in a country with 1.3 billion people and limited resources, any change has to be made gradually. No nation can go from 0 to 100 in the blink of an eye without suffering from social fallout.

  • maybeabanana

    Fix that problem from the surface huh prof? Why not fix the root problem? The over population, the discrimination, the education will be some main causes versus trying to fix a symptom where people will do as they please anyway.

    • Kai

      The professor did tangentially acknowledge the root problems. He recognize that there still needs to be education for the people and it has to “persevere”. It’s like what jon says, it won’t happen overnight. China is trying to fix root problems of overpopulation: One Child Policy. It’s trying to improve education and issues of discrimination are part of that though just like everywhere else, people find it really easy to discriminate.

      • linette lee

        He acknowledge the root problems and he is suggesting something that will create more problems. What a genius this professor. How can you educate the poor when you segregate them from your living environment? You need to expose them and their children to the same environment you are living in so they too learn to become civilized. It’s like a Thai person can never understand the western culture if they never live in a western country. How do you expect them to understand?

        And it’s not so hard to build more schools through out china rural areas. China has the money and look how fast they build residential buildings. So what’s the problem? How much longer do the rural kids have to wait? What do you need to teach in public school? language, math, art, and science. You mean you can’t find enough teachers to do that in china? It’s not rocket science. China needs to set up an universal academic standard across the whole country. Meaning all kids rich or poor, rural or urban receive the same high quality education and all have equal access to it. Also school lunch should be free for all China students. No kids should go hungry. Maybe is the gov’t official stop spending all their time stealing money they can actual get this done within 5 years. China has man power. So why do we need to focus on implementing and creating wasting time on these dumb test just to block the poor from improving??

        When will China become first world? A country where only 10% are educated and rich leaving 90% uneducated and poor is just third world country. China will remain as third world country because of people like this professor.

        And for crying out loud. Set up that universal healthcare program in China. Look at Canada and studying their system. They have publicly funded health care system. China can use that.

        One child policy definitely is a joke in China. Basically anyone has money can just pay penalties and have 2 or 3 kids. So it favors the rich and deprive the poor. It should be one child for all rich or poor folks. And enforce prevention not force abortion.

        • Kai

          There are rarely solutions in social politics that doesn’t create other problems. I think the guy knows what the root problems are but he’s suggesting a stop-gap measure, something that addresses certain complaints.

          He may, from his perspective, not see or is neglecting the negative consequences of his suggestion, overweighting the benefits and underweighting the “damage” to others.

          You ask a lot of questions that begs being turned back on you when you make comments about preserving Hong Kong for Hong Kongers and restricting mainlanders. How can you educate the mainlanders when you segregate them from your living environment of Hong Kong? Don’t you need to expose them and their children to the same environment you are living in so they too learn to become “civilized”?

          Let’s take Hong Kong out of the equation. Let’s use any other country. If Americans want China to be the same democracy they are, shouldn’t they remove restrictions from Chinese immigration?

          It’s just not as simple as you make it out to be, and you need to be mindful of how you wield certain arguments and rationale based on convenience and self-interest.

          Yes, building schools through China’s rural areas shouldn’t be as hard as it is but it’s also not as easy as you think it is. The efficient allocation of resources has always been a problem in governance. I’m not justifying the corruption or inefficiencies that are intentionally happening in China’s system, but it’s also unreaslistic to pretend like they are easily surmountable to support or justify another argument.

          The government is actually notoriously slow in building residential buildings. It’s private contractors selling commercial real estate that are fast. That’s business, not government. Schools don’t directly make money like commercial real estate does. Where there is money to be made, there’s definitely plenty of growth. That’s why there are actually a lot of growth in private schools in China, but you won’t see them in rural areas that are impoverished because there’s less money to be made there.

          So what’s the problem? Tons. Don’t get me wrong, you pushing for improvement with your speech is good, but I feel like you’re doing so in a way that reveals a lack of knowledge about the problems, which kinda hurts your cause. You’re seen as wanting problems to magically go away and thus can’t be taken seriously.

          Finding good teachers in China is hard in China just like outside of China. It’s a really damn hard job. Ask many of the English teacher commenters here. Teachers are humans too and they want to live in nice environments like everyone else so you’re not going to get people lining up to go live in backwater villages in the middle of buttfuck nowhere. The more educated you are, the more likely you have higher standards in life.

          It’s not rocket science to prescribe solutions that don’t impact you or require any actual contribution from you. Governing efficiently and effectively however actually kinda is like rocket science.

          • linette lee

            YOu should know why HK is restricted to mainlanders. IT’s because the land of HK is governed by HK gov’t. Financially supported by HK taxpayers. HK and China is a completely separate government. China laws do not apply to HK and vice versa. HKers pay heavy tax to the Hk gov’t and that is how the poor Hkers can enjoy HK gov’t financial aid and other benefits like healthcare and free public school for all HK kids. The mainlanders don’t pay tax to HK gov’t nor are they citizens of HK. No reasons for them to come use the HK benefits without paying tax to HK gov’t. The mainlanders do not contribute tax to Hk. And don’t tell me China folks do business with HK and that is why Hk is rich. So are you telling me just because mainlanders do business with Japan or spend money in Japan that gives them the right to be citizens of Japan and use their gov’t budget like free public school or healthcare?
            China can do the same thing. China gov’t can collect tax from mainlanders and set up free public schools and health cares for them. Shanghai, beijing, etc those big cities are all governed under China gov’t. Using China gov’t budget. No reason why there are restrictions for the mainlanders to travel from city to city within China. They are all under one gov’t one budget.
            Are you telling me Beijing and sichuan is run by different gov’t and have different laws and different gov’t budget?

            And the excuse saying private company can build building faster and gov’t build building slower. Like what?? So what are they waiting for?
            When China invest more budget to build more schools. I am sure they will build enough dorms to house the teachers and staff if needed. A small community with supermarkets and transportation. Higher pay to attract applicants. It’s like that in USA. The pay is not the same for all doctors or nurses across nation. In areas where no one want to go they have higher pay. They provide you with dorm and transportation if they have to. And you are not hiring scientists to teach. From preschool to high school you don’t need phDs for most subjects. College you pay professor good money and give incentives. It’s all coming from the same China budget.

            It just a million excuses not to do it.

          • Kai

            What you’re saying are arbitrary distinctions. The argument can also be made that HK is subject to the mainland Chinese government and derives benefits and resources from its association. Keeping arbitrary barriers for movement between HK and the rest of China is itself a stopgap measure, a compromise until full integration is seen as feasible and desirable. At its heart, the desire of HKers to restrict access to mainlanders is the same as Beijingers wanting to restrict access to non-Beijingers. In both cases, outsiders are feared as taxing local resources beyond what they contribute back into it.

            As I’ve said before, this is all about in-groups and out-groups and whether the in-group has the power to control access to their group and maintain exclusivity. As it is, Beijing does have the power, because of how the hukou system works. HK has the power because of its history of being handed back with a measure of independent governance and other artificial legal barriers ensuring a continuation of some of the past status quo.

            Both of these things are legal political constructs that can be changed if there is the will. They don’t exist because they always have; they exist because some people want them to exist and others haven’t yet dismantled them with superior power and support.

            Japan can prevent Chinese from becoming Japanese citizens because it has the power to do so and the Chinese aren’t intent on challenging that power. But what’s to stop non-Beijing people from reforming the hukou system so they can all get Beijing hukous? Nothing. Just like there’s very little HKers can actually do if the Chinese government decided to lift all barriers of entry and movement into HK. You think HK can fight off the rest of China? It is the Chinese government that allows HK to have the powers of restriction it does, because the Chinese government knows allowing mainlanders to flock to HK as they please has negative consequences. That knowledge of the consquences is what underpins the hukou system itself.

            When you dismissively ask if Beijing and Sichuan are run by different governments, it suggests to me that we have very different levels of knowledge and familiarity with government in China. Yes, there is a central government in China but there are smaller administrative units. It’s division of labor and specialization. Just about every country is set up in the same way, and this different administrative units vie for the same pool of national resources available. This should be a concept you understand but your comments and arguments don’t reflect that.

            Therefore, I’m not sure if we can discuss productively. You seem to be dismissing facts and considerations I’m bringing up simply because you insist things can be done differently. Yes, things can be done differently, but there are obstacles to doing things differently. When someone brings them up, you should consider and address them instead of just dismissing them. I’ve already said pushing for change is good, but pretending change is easy is a disservice to the efforts to bring about actual change.

          • linette lee

            1)” HK is subject to the mainland Chinese government

            While it is true China gov’t has power over HK gov’t.
            HK is still governed and regulated by HK gov’t and is a special administrative region. The gov’t system of HK and China are just too different and impossible for them to merge. So in order for China to govern and apply China regulations and laws on HK, China will have to completely take down HK gov’t altogether. Like you say China won’t do that because they know it would be disastrous. I doubt they would do that anytime soon.

            2)” and derives benefits and resources from its association.”

            What resources and benefits HK is getting FOR FREE from China. Business trading don’t count. That is just mutual benefits. HK do trading with Taiwan and other countries too. China do import and export with Taiwan so Taiwan is getting benefits from China? The Hkers are going into China to get free healthcare?

            Can you elaborate on this topic because I am dumb founded every time someone tells me hK gets economic benefits from china. I thought the business benefits is mutual. Did China send HK funds for free? Maybe I am missing some info. Maybe I am not aware China has been sending free funds to support HK gov’t.

          • Kai

            I’ll be happy to have the conversation of the “balance of benefits” between Hong Kong and the mainland some other time, but I want to get back to your original comments so we can arrive at a mutual understanding before we go too far off-topic. You said, for example:

            How can you educate the poor when you segregate them from your living environment? You need to expose them and their children to the same environment you are living in so they too learn to become civilized.

            And it’s not so hard to build more schools through out china rural areas. China has the money and look how fast they build residential buildings. So what’s the problem? How much longer do the rural kids have to wait? What do you need to teach in public school? language, math, art, and science. You mean you can’t find enough teachers to do that in china? It’s not rocket science.

            I want to ask you if there is segregation of the poor and differences of environment in Hong Kong, and what the Hong Kong government is doing about that. For example, you have a lot of people living in cages in Hong Kong. How is the HK government alleviating that phenomenon and how long will it take to stamp that phenomenon out? What are the challenges the HK government faces in trying to combat poverty in Hong Kong, with the segregation of the poor from the wealthy, with some school districts having better schools and more resources than others? What problems face the HK government and how much time will it take for the HK government to ensure equal access to the same high level of education for all HK children? Is education at every school in HK the same level of quality?

            One of the big hot button issues of mainlanders having children in Hong Kong was worries about mainland children taking up classroom seats from Hong Kong children. What’s hard for the HK government to just build more schools? Doesn’t it also have money and doesn’t it also quickly build new skyscrapers and developments?

          • linette lee

            Regarding to HK living space, I can very easily sum up the whole thing into one answer. The problem is NO SPACE. HK can’t cross border and take lands from China and use it to expand. HK is getting more and more crowded by the minute with more mainlanders coming down to give birth and marrying in. A small tiny island with 7 millions population. We can build our buildings taller with each units smaller but HK is already the highest tallest city in the world and the apartments are pretty small. We talked about forming artificial islands. Some mention to purchase lands from China. The chief of HK CY Leung suggest to build even more residential buildings. But more buildings means more pollution of course.

            Most cage dwellers are old single people with no family in
            HK. And most don’t work. They just live off from social welfare. So cage dwellers in Hk = homeless people in China.

            ……..”Many cage dwellers retain the identity of tranients. Men especially cling to the idea that one day they will return to China, where the relatives they have supported will care for them.

            “It’s a kind of reward for them,” Ms. Leung says.

            Social workers say the “caged people” reject shared public housing or care homes because these represent a loss of independence, new obligations, and permanence. Public housing is far from the neighborhood hawkers and sympathetic employers on whom the lodgers rely.

            Aware of these problems, Peter Tsao, Hong Kong secretary for home affairs, last month announced a three-pronged plan to relieve overcrowding in “bedspace apartments” by cutting the number of inhabitants in half.

            Under the plan, $7 million in donations will be used to resettle 1,000 residents who depend on welfare in nearby, renovated buildings. Voluntary agencies will run the new hostels. Another 1,000 of those with modest incomes will be persuaded to move into public housing.

            But social workers and legislators worry that despite government assurances, the plan could lead to an increase in homelessness, since all the 4,000 lodgers – whose average income is $300 a month – will face higher rents.

            They also argue that the plan is only a short-term solution. Rapid urban renewal and the breakdown of the traditional family are likely to worsen the housing problem for Hong Kong’s elderly singles in coming years, they warn.

            “We want to make sure people moved out are not left in the streets,” Ms. Tam says.


          • Kai

            You’re missing my point. I’m not asking why there isn’t more living space in HK, I’m trying to get you to either understand or remember the concept of scarce or limited resources because your earlier comments suggest you don’t.

            The people who live in cages in Hong Kong are comparable to many of the migrants in China who must group rent, squeezing often a dozen or more people into a single room. I brought this up not because I need you to tell me why some HK people live in cages but to get you to consider the difficulties the HK government faces improving the lot for these people who live in cages. Those difficulties are similar to the difficulties Chinese governments face trying to improve the lot for China’s migrants or poor.

            Did you notice the words “short-term solution” in your quoted article? Do you understand how this professor’s suggestion is also a “short-term solution” for a specific problem?

          • linette lee

            Regarding to segregation between the rich and poor in HK.
            Well there is no segregation between the poor and the rich in HK. All HK people have equal rights and equal access to public healthcare and public school rich or poor. All HKers have equal opportunities with gov’t programs or jobs. We have anti discrimination laws. We have equal opportunity laws. So no segregation between the rich and the poor and all have equal rights before the hk gov’t. We have welfare and social services for all Hkers.

            We do however have a big financial gap between the rich and the poor. Well..some people just make lots of money what can I tell you…look at bill gate. And we have plenty poor hkers making minimum wages just like USA. We have minimum wage controlled. We pay tax to fund hk gov’t. So nobody starve and neglect or reject when need emergency medical attention because they are poor. Kids from poor families don’t starve.

          • Kai

            You misunderstand. There is de facto segregation of rich and poor in HK (like everywhere). For example, some people are only able to attend certain schools if they have the means to while those with less means have no choice but to attend other schools. Again, I’m trying to get you to understand or remember the concept of limited scarce resources.

            Yes, the HK government endeavors to provide a minimum amount of education or healthcare or public services to all HK citizens. So does the Chinese government. Yes, there are equal opportunitiy laws and anti-discrimination laws in HK. China has similar government laws and policies. Is either government wholly successful in their endeavors and policies/laws? No. People fall through the cracks because of inefficiencies in governance. Providing equal rights and equal access is an ideal and a goal, not a reality. Do you understand that?

            If you can understand how there is inequality in HK, then you should be able to understand how there is inequality in China. If you can think of reasons for the inequality in HK, you can think of the reasons for the inequality in China. If you can think of the reasons for inequality in China, you can better understand and criticize this professor’s suggestion instead of just asking why he doesn’t magically solve the root problems.

          • linette lee

            It’s true, before China improve all the rural areas to make them livable like the urban areas, China can’t really do away with hukou system. China has lots to do. Let’s see what happen 5 yrs from now.

          • Kai

            So what should the Beijing municipal government do until the hukous system can be done away with? What should it do between now and 5 years from now? What should it do about the complaints of non-Beijing people wanting to obtain Beijing hukous to get access to local education and healthcare benefits? What should it do about the complaints of Beijingers wanting to keep their local resources for themselves and not let non-Beijingers “steal” them? Why should either group have to wait for relief for their problems?

          • linette lee

            Yes, Hk school system all public schools follow the guidelines of Hk education bureau. They have guidelines and requirements. They control the academic standard. Parents are allowed to participate in decision making because they have meetings with education bureau.

            All HK school buildings follow building codes. We build them safe for all our HK childred. Safe enough even for typhoons equivalent to a category 2 hurricane. Never heard of collapse school on Hk children. And we have plenty typhoon and heavy rain storm.

            Some schools in rich neighborhood parents donate millions. Of course they have higher resource. Some schools need exam to get in because of all the smart kids go there. Pretty much like any other school in USA.

            And again…no space. No space to keep building schools for all mainlanders. We can’t build HK schools inside China. Not our territory.

          • Kai

            Again, you’re missing my point. See my previous replies here and here.

            China also has an education bureau with guidlines that control academic standards. There are also building codes in China. There are also rich parents who donate millions to schools in China enabling some schools to have more resources. Admission to certain schools in China also depend on exams. There are also limited space for building schools and cheap housing for migrants and poor in China.

            If you can understand inequality in HK and inefficient governance in HK, why do you think similar inequality and inefficiency is so easy to improve or solve in China?

          • linette lee

            1)Space is not a problem in China. China doesn’t lack space. China has plenty of space to build more buildings for schools and housing.
            2)social class segregation in China created by gov’t system like hukou is not the same as income gap in hk separating rich and poor. apple and orange.
            3)I know there are education burea, building codes, food inspection department, court order, welfare…etc in China. Nothing seems to be enforced correctly or fully or distribute properly for most of the time, or else why China is still like this? Buildings collapse, poison foods, bribery, starving kids in rural…the list just goes on. To be honest with you, my family and I when we shop in Chinese supermarket , we buy and prefer Taiwan and HK food products company over China. Not because it taste better, but because of better food inspection control. I am sure many China chinese agree with me.

            And you can not compare HK discrimination against mainlanders with urban mainlanders against rural mainlanders. IT’s not completely the same. You folks are discriminating against your own countrymen for competing for China gov’t funds and resources. What gives you urbans folks more rights to China gov’t resources and funds? The rural folks contribute to the economy of China just as much as you urban folks. You are all under the same China gov’t system sharing the same budget. If beijing don’t have enough schools or hospitals….well use the China budget to build more. Start building now. YOu have space to expand.

            With Hk we discriminate basically against any non HK folks who comes in to steal funds and resources that we hk taxpayers pay for. The mainlanders don’t contribute to hk tax or hk economy, so why are they stealing resources like using our free healthcare and school? Any foreign country you go to they would have problem with foreigners stealing funds and public services without paying tax to their gov’t.

          • linette lee

            and another thing is, China gov’t is much much much richer than HK gov’t. They have a much bigger budget. Knowing that makes Hkers more angry when mainlanders come to HK to steal limited services and funds in HK. Like why they use our poor HK gov’t funds when they supposed to be using their rich China gov’t funds?

          • Kai

            1. If everyone wants to live in downtown Beijing or in the areas around Beijing’s best schools so their children can get into those schools but all the land in that area has been developed, is there a space problem? If the available housing in that area is too expensive due to limited supply and overwhelming demand, is there a space problem? If the school only has so many classrooms and so many desks and so many teachers who can only teach so many students at a time, is there a space problem?

            2. I’m not saying how it came about is the same, I’m talking about how the results are the same. Is it not true that people have inequal access to certain resources and goods? That it is difficult to solve the problem of actual real-world equality?

            3. You said you didn’t know so I responded appropriately. I agree that many things don’t seem to be enforced correctly or fully or properly, but why is this? What can be done to fix this? How much time will it take? What can be done as short-term solutions or stop-gap measures in the meantime?

            I’m not convinced why discrimination by Hong Kongers against mainlanders is fundamentally much less completely different from the discrimination between Beijing people and non-Beijing people. Beijing people are discriminating against non-Beijing people for competing for local city resources, JUST LIKE Hong Kong people are discriminating against non-Hong Kong people for competing for local city resources. In both dynamics, local city resources are provided for by a mixture of local and overall Chinese national government funding.

            Urban folks are not saying they have more rights to national government resources and funds. They believe they have more right to their local resources and funds, just like Hong Kongers. How well they understand where their local resources and funds actually come from is an ignorance share by both Beijingers and Hong Kongers. You seem to be under the misconception that Hong Kong only trades with the mainland but otherwise has no access to the central government’s resources. This is false. For example:

            If you were to judge Hong Kong’s relationship with the mainland solely on the basis of what government officials here say, you would get a thoroughly confused picture.

            On one hand, the government paints Hong Kong as a supplicant, begging for scraps from Beijing’s table. In a volatile world, officials make out that the city’s economic future relies on winning ever more special favours from Beijing.

            In the financial sector, this dependence is so great that the chief executive is even setting up a new Financial Services Development Council designed specifically to plead our cause on the mainland.

            On the other hand, our officials are putting up barriers to mainlanders coming here to spend and invest.

            This is what I was referring to in previous comments, that administrative regions like Beijing, including SARS like Hong Kong, all exist in a system where they can and do petition resources from the central government that they ostensibly use for their constituents. Yes, there are differences in detail from how appropriations are done in other governments like the US, but it is still the same concepts of distribution and allocation of scarce resources. Yes, there are differences between Beijing and Hong Kong in how they get funding and distribute funding given differences in governance but the fundamental dynamic of collecting local resources, obtaining larger national resources, and then distributing this pool of resources locally is the same.

            Beijing people asking why the funding their city government has should benefit non-Beijing people is the same as Hong Kongers asking why the funding their city government has should benefit non-Hong Kong people. It is vastly more similar than different.

            There is corruption and wasteful spending in the Beijing government and this impacts the provision of public goods. Yes, absolutely. Historically, Hong Kong has suffered the same problems. It still does, though easily arguably to a lesser degree, especially in the same forms. The question is, how did Hong Kong solve or improve on these problems? How long did it take? What factors helped or hurt Hong Kong in its struggle to conquer these problems? Are those factors the same or different for Beijing? What short-term or stop-gap measures did Hong Kong implement in the meantime while it tried to address the root probems? And what problems did those create? How were those problems handled?

            The Beijingers who disciminate against non-Beijing people also think the latter are coming into steal funds and resources that they pay for. That you think they don’t merely shows that you are lacking knowledge about municipal AND national governance in China. I’m not saying every last detail is the same with HK but the fundamental dynamic is more similar than different. Beijingers also ask why non-Beijing people should be allowed to steal their resources like their level of healthcare and education. They too feel and have legitimate arguments that they pay into their own municipal system so the benefits of that should be reserved for them and not “outsiders”.

            If you understand the HK arguments, you should understand the Beijing arguments. If you sympathize with one but not the other, it only demonstrates irrational bias and defense for the group you feel you belong to (HKers) versus the group you feel you don’t belong to (Beijingers, urban mainlanders, etc.).

          • linette lee

            You have Hukou system to form barrier to avoid influx of poor rural folks. So I am telling you since they are all under China gov’t system using the same central budget China can allocate their funds and resources to focus on improving the rural areas, to bring them more up to bar with the rest of the city folks. Instead of focusing creating more barriers and tests. Your argument saying each province has their own small sub-administration system. Well so is USA. Usa has states and each state their laws and regulations vary a bit. Each state has state budget. But the central USA gov’t allocate funds and resources to states that need the money. China should be doing that. It should be their primary goal right now if they are serious about working toward developing into first world country. Not constantly coming up with stupid ideas to form more barriers and segregation among their citizens. Allocate central funds to areas that need improvement.

            And another thing is that USA has minimum wage and it’s controlled. For income taxes they based on individual salary. It’s a percentage. High income higher income tax maybe up to 35% of your pay. Low income folks on minimum wage pay less tax maybe only 5% of their pay and they are even entitled to gov’t aid. So everyone is paying tax to fund central gov’t. Everyone is entitled to gov’t resources and funds on the same level. Is China doing that. I am not sure. Maybe you can tell me.

            OF course it will take time to improve. So stop wasting time with more stupid ideas and start working on it now.

          • Kai

            Both the US and Chinese central governments allocate money and resources to state/provincial governments. Both American states and Chinese provinces request money and resources from the central governments arguing that they need that.

            1. Do you think money and resources controlled by the US central government are always efficiently and correctly allocated to the right states? That there isn’t corruption or congressmen managing to get more money for their state and constitutuents at the expense of other states and the constituents of other congressmen?

            2. You say “China should be doing that”. What makes you think China isn’t? Perhaps you’ll say it is, but it isn’t doing it wel enough. In that case, what are the many reasons why it may not be doing it well enough? How do we address those reasons? How much time will it take to change things so those reasons no longer exist and the Chinese central government can finally allocate funds and resources the provinces that need them well enough?

            3. Is it fair for you to blame the Chinese central government for a Tsinghua professor choosing to spend his own time and energy suggesting a “scientific” way to address a problem that many Beijing residents complain about?

            4. Are there places and districts in Hong Kong that get central funding while other places and districts need improvement? Why does that happen? How can that be stopped so that the places that need improvement get more funding from the central government?

            5. Are you aware that China also has a minimum wage?

            6. What do you understand about China’s tax system? Personal income taxes?

            7. Are you aware that low income people in China are also entitled to government aid?

            8. What do you understand about how the central government of China gets revenue for its central treasury?

            9. What makes you think everyone entitled to government resources and funds on the same level in the US? Especially when resources and funds are distributed based on inherently unequal congressional lobbying, legislation, and representation?

            10. What makes you think China hasn’t started to work on improving? Just because it isn’t perfect yet? Have there been no improvements in China thus proving that they aren’t working on it?

          • linette lee

            1) 2) 4) 8)Compare to China, USA and HK is doing 1000X better in allocating funds to areas needed. Because we all have eyes to see. We also have eyes to see how China officials use the gov’t funds for personal use. You can keep arguing saying USA hk also have corruption. YOu are in denial if you think it is as bad as China.

            5) 6) 7) 8)This I don’t know. Maybe you can give me a brief example like I gave you brief examples. So why some rural areas folks are hungry? Why some kids no school?

            10) China did improve a lot. And I hope they continue to improve and focus more on improving the rural areas. Not focus their energy on how to create more walls and barriers against the rural folks. The mentality of urban folks how they treat rural migrants like they are not also citizens of China is really sad.

          • Kai

            I’m not asking you which is better nor am I arguing that things in HK or the US are as bad as in China. I asked you specific questions. You’re answering questions I didn’t ask. Can you answer the questions I asked?

            I’m surprised you can read chinaSMACK and not have any general sense that there are taxation systems, minimum wage laws, and government aid and welfare programs in China. You’ve commented on posts in the past specifically about these things. If you still don’t know, here’s some reading for you to start with:



            What makes you think China overall is “focusing their energy on creating more walls and barriers against rural folks”? The suggestions of a single Tsinghua professor who doesn’t represent the Chinese government?

            Yes, a lot of urban folks in China are discriminatory against rural folks. How is this different from how a lot of Hong Kong folks are discriminatory against mainlanders? It fundamentally ISN’T different. If you can understand and even support the discrimination of HKers against mainlanders, you shouldn’t sound so indignant and self-righteous about how some Beijingers are discriminatory against wai di ren.

  • lacompacida

    This is great. All nations should treat Chinese immigrants as they are treated in their own country. This creates an opportunity for all nations all over the world to create a test for Chinese immigrants without being called racists. All nations should treat Chinese immigrants as they are treated in their own country.

    • garbo

      If other countries treated Chinese people are foreigners are treated here they would cry like the little babies they are.

  • linette lee

    yes, good idea, And make sure this Beijing professor take Hong kong exam, pass and understand all HK laws before you china folks let him out of China and go to Hong kong. Apparently he thinks breaking HK laws is good. Make sure all beijing folks pass and understand HK laws and regulations before they come to HK.



  • linette lee


    You think the Beijing professor understand these? lol

  • lacompacida

    Is this what Xi meant when he talked about reforming the hukou system when he first got into office ?

  • linette lee

    I am beginning to feel sorry for the China young people. If this is what China has to offer with these upper educated class, the so called intelligent folks those China professors in China universities…there is no hope for China future.

    While the rest of the world is fighting against discrimination and oppression. China educated class is teaching and showing china kids how to discriminate and form segregation. Just like India with their caste system. China and India should be best friends because they are both backward.
    I don’t understand why my HK girlfriends want to move to China and live. Do you want your kids to be raised in a society like China??? seriously?? Society like China, India, middle east, Africa…those countries are the last place anyone should raise their kids in.

    • 用开水烫我!

      they are quite some foreigners raise kids in shanghai. no need to mention your hk that much.
      because live in a big state is totally different from in a tiny snobbish crowded island.

      • Middle_Kingdum


  • linette lee

    I am glad that these china netizens mostly disagree with this dumb ass Tsinghua
    professor. China young folks are getting more impatient with this dumb ass China gov’t.

  • 二奶头发

    This is SOOO FUNNY. Some chinese women arguing on the Vancouver Skytrain


    • garbo

      Hong Kong people really do hate mainlanders. What did the Mainlander want her seat even though there are other seats available? Or dud she bump into her and not say sorry?

    • Claude

      Why go to China when China can come to you? We see that kind of drama almost everyday in China.

    • yowhatsup

      It’s funny the title says “Chinese woman arguing with laowai”. Aren’t they supposed to be the laowai in Canada? silly

      • JesusFuckingChrist

        Either way it doesn’t make sense, because the women standing up is Asian also. And she’s screaming ” Take off your pants, take off your pants “

    • mwanafa

      Ha ha I didn’t know that “You are smart” is an insult.

  • Diversify

    Whereas it is necessary and if possible, the economical and human resources could be maximized if China may be broken up into several smaller semi-autonomous states (like EU), possibly in magnitude of ten semi-independent countries or so around the size of 100-200 million population each. These semi-independent smaller size states will make coordination, specialization and controls much more effective with less hassles.

    • Kai

      You mean provinces?

      • David

        and the truth is China does do a better then most job of having a lot of authority at the provisional level. However, I still think there is a bottle neck in some areas of authority that the CCP retains in order to maintain central political control. I do not see that changing anytime soon.

  • Nefarious Laowei

    CCTV should condition the city dwellers with a folksy sitcom take off called he Beijing Hillbillies”. Everyone would love stories of the rural Chinket family who moves to Beijing after striking it rich in gutter oil.

  • stevelaudig

    Is BJ a mess? Yes. Does something need to be done? Yes. Is this is? Probably not because it has the “I am here in this place and now we are closing the door” ism, classism; racism; ethicism; urban-ism. It is bigotry but the context calls for something. After spending a month there I am not impressed with the present “high level” of civic behavior and norms” in this “urban area”. My memories of BJ are dogshit and spitting and air ‘to die” not for, but from.

  • Riddler

    They would all cheat anyways.

  • that guy

    how bout getting rid of the hukou system altogether, seeing as its a sanctioned tool to enforce discrimination on your own people

    • Justin

      Well like everything else in China, it’s not as simple as your reductionist perspective makes it out to be. The sad fact is that cities don’t have the capacity to hold all the workers that would come if they, today, said no more hukous and just let everyone in who wanted to come. Beijing’s population would probably swell by a few million give or take and the city would be more overcrowded, polluted and pathetically miserable than it already is. And I realize migrants will come anyway and it’s only justice to give them the same rights as everyone else, but at least there is a disincentive to stem the tide of refugees from the countryside. China still relies a lot on economic planning and weak social infrastructure, such as education and public welfare. So it’s not like they can just build 100 schools overnight to house all the migrant workers’ children. Let me get something straight: hukou does mean the right to live in Beijing. Migrants can live anywhere they want. It’s the right to the services that come with being a resident of Beijing, such as education for their children and social welfare benefits. China’s building it’s social safety net slowly. It can afford to take care of these workers if they are living in the countryside where the cost of living is low, but when they move to the city, they cost more to take care of, especially if their incomes are low and the government is obligated to offer them a minimum guaranteed income as hukou holders. So I don’t see why it’s entirely irrational to test them to prove that they bring more value to the city than they take away in light of these facts

      • maybeabanana

        Hm.. you got an interesting idea there. I think yours may be up to something but I also believe in free market and let the economy decide where if it is more profitable to build more foundation within Beijing or expand its infrastructure so to say… then things sort of happen naturally rather than force examination. Urban sprawl…better urban planning, tear down those olympic Birds nests and construct quality living quarters, better subways and rapid transit, line extensions, or what not… but really.. NOT everyone gets to live in Beijing and suck in that smog. It’s not fair but you know what, those who strive to succeed gets to live there if they want and that’s the greatness of freedom to do things.

  • Justin

    I find it ironic that many of the expats who are shitting on this guy for suggesting this are the same ones who themselves routinely shit on migrant workers for being uncouth and not following laws, such as eating on the subway.

    • Probotector

      …and you point is… righteous indignation is somehow wrong?

      • Kai

        It is when it becomes self-righteous indignation.

    • Germandude

      I find it ironic that you think it’s hard to understand the differences.

      Discrimination of people is wrong. Discrimination of your own countrymen is pathetic.
      Complaining about people not behaving properly is a completely different thing. If those are migrant workers or e.g. Shanghainese doesn’t matter.

      Keeping people out of the cities and so, withholding them educational chances for their children thus blocking development is….?

      Well, let’s stick with you finding irony in this…

      • Kai

        I think you’ve mistaken what he finds irony in. He said one thing he finds ironic but you substituted in a whole different thing, didn’t you?

        • Germandude

          I think I understand pretty well. He finds it ironic that foreigners criticize the idea of testing people from rural areas if they fit into the city environment, while foreigners also criticize bad behaviour of those people within the city (his example being the metro).

          Now I think I am a master of irony and sarcasm, but cannot find any in the statements given. It’s comparing apples with oranges…

          • Kai

            He’s using “ironic” in the colloquial sense (where it is used for situations that are merely coincidental or unexpected, blame the evolution of language but people more or less undersand its usage), and he finds it “ironic” that it’s the same foreigners, not foreigners in general.

            Basically he’s just criticizing them as hypocritical, that people who are critical of such people’s behaviors should actually be supportive of any suggestion that could curb the population of those people and thus those behaviors..

            Of course, people who are critical of such people’s behaviors don’t have to supportive of ANY and EVERY suggestion that promises to deal with them. In that sense, Justin’s comment is unfair.

            What I felt was mistaken in your response was suggesting he doesn’t understand the difference between discrimination against people and discrimination against one’s own countrymen. I’m not sure how his criticism against certain foreigners suggests he doesn’t understand that difference.

            Hope this clears up my response to you.

  • RickyBeijing

    Am I the only one here who thinks this isn’t a bad idea?!

    • Kai

      It depends on what the test ultimately tests for and grants. I believe the professor is focusing on granting legal hukou rights but the rest of his language understandably gives people the impression that the test can also be used to deny access to the city entirely for anyone who isn’t seen as conforming to a minimum amount of education, employability, or personal behavior/character.

      It’s hard to rationally say the idea of a test to restrict access or privilege to something is fundamentally morally offensive because it’s an idea that is used for so many other things but it does pinch the nerve of freedom of mobility, the ideal that people should be allowed to physically go where they want to improve their life.

      • RickyBeijing

        It doesn’t seem that ridiculous to me to try to preserve some of the charm that the city has left. I know it is the capital city of a huge country but to be honest this system kinda just makes sense to me.

        Living in Beijing, I see WaiDiRen everyday, fresh off the train. They are easily recognisable by their potent smell, they are carrying huge silage or hay sacks filled with clothes or fuck knows what.

        They just save some cash, buy a train ticket and look for a better future, all of which is completely understandable. But were we to turn the situation around what if there was a similar method for every nation in the world to travel to any place in the world they wanted and just sleep in the street and hope a job comes by? There is a reason we have borders and passports and immigration laws.

        I understand that this is an internal concern, but the same principles apply, what if all Africans suddenly had the means to travel overnight to London or New York? Immediately these places would turn to the runs of their former selves.

        There needs to be some control and educational process in place just to keep the sanity of a city! Almost every day I read about how the government is trying to ‘better’ it’s people by making pamphlets for Chinese tourists or having exams for taxi drivers, it seems perfectly reasonable to me to slow the influx of ill-mannered, uneducated immigrants until a certain standard of society is achieved, or at least the face of it.

        • Hmmm

          “I understand that this is an internal concern, but the same principles apply, what if all Africans suddenly had the means to travel overnight to London or New York? Immediately these places would turn to the runs of their former selves.”

          If you understand it is an internal concern then I don’t understand why you use immigration/emigration as an illustrative example.

          Clearly the two are different.

          • RickyBeijing

            If you had read the portion that you copied and pasted, you would have seen where I pointed out that the same principles apply. China has the world’s largest population and a huge amount of cultural diversity. Just because two places are in the same country does not make them the same, and that’s the problem being addressed here.

            Primarily over-population and overuse of resources, but secondary it’s the lack of education and cultural disparity. Just because there isn’t a fence around a place doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to let floods of people enter, it’s the same basic principle of border control. The only difference is that it’s happening within one country, the world’s third largest and most populated country.

        • Kai

          Have you seen Elysium?

    • takasar1

      i agree with you. majority of posters just trying hate on officials. nothing new. this isnt exactly a blog where we can discuss things logically is it?

  • Watanabe

    Lol… so who wants to live in China? Oh, only the Chinese themselves… lol..

  • Cauffiel

    Official 1: Uh, oh…. we gotta a problem here. What are we going to do?

    Professor 1: Let’s give’em an exam!

    Official 1: The genius that comes from Tsinghua….. may the Heavenly Kingdom never be without it!

  • TediousImp

    ‘we can also refer to international experience, establishing a “work-permit system”… Does this happen anywhere? Could this even be conceived anywhere outside of China? Also the esteemed professor looks like a really old jogger. Seriously – put on a shirt man.

    • Kai

      Yes, there are work permit systems in many countries for non-citizens requiring people to meet certain requirements. What’s different here is its application to national citizens but within a country to control internal migration and, possibly, social behavior.

      • Claude

        For your consideration. The Canadian immigration points calculator.


        This system works so well the Australians adopted it.

        Canada also has a guest workers program. It appears the employer takes the initiative for that through an application with the Can gov and a hiring center overseas, I presume.

        You can’t argue the the migrant issue isn’t a problem in China. there’s only so much labor available. Something has to thin the issue out. A point system a test? Nasty I know but perhaps a solution to a problem until the countryside is better developed.

        I’m kind of playing devils advocate here but I’m not sure the migrant population brings the same to the table what a Immigrant to Canada may. They’re very entrepreneurial but partially we only allow so many to immigrate a year so there’s room and opportunity’s. Also, there’s organizations to help them in Canada.

        So why is a bad thing for there to be test for the Chinese migrant? It kind of seem reasonable but the left-wing pinko in me is a little disgusted. Mmmm…

  • Paneraman

    “examination should consist of several parts, including tests of educational level, of legal knowledge, of work capability and so on”

    >What about the ones who have money and buy out every single test examiner?

    Then it’d be futile.

    “College graduates could be seen as educationally qualified; having a stable job would signify qualification of work capability.”
    >First, employee the 23 unemployed people in Shanghai.
    Then we can discuss step two.

    “Of course we cannot violently drive people out, but instead disperse them to other places according to the circumstances”

    >Of course not. You don’t kick people out; the chengguang is sent to do that by the same government you’re vouching for.

    “Can we not offer low-rent housing to these people? We could even build some collective dormitories and flats for singles, and it’ll solve the problem. We can also encourage companies to build some dormitories for their employees, such as adding light-steel structures as dormitories on the roofs of their office buildings, the provide housing for their employees.”

    >Do you, sir, not read about people evicted (dragged) from their homes and the construction company just demolishes their home?

    “Can we ask doctors in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou to spend one year out of every three practicing in other regions, to help improve the level of medical care in those areas?”

    >What about that nurse at Tiantang hospital who gave the wrong IV to the wrong patient who died after receiving injection?

  • Chris

    Naww … There’s no segregation or discrimination in China.

  • Nicola Collina

    real bejingers (i mean old ones with family that served for the emperor and joined party after war) hate the waidiren.. is a big hate. they consider them like invasors and shit… maybe if some of you live in bejing he will disagree, but maybe few of you know long generations (hundreds of year) beijingers.. in my knoweldge this is the common opinion against new comers (chinese newcomers.. they are much more nice with foreigners….)…so this proposal have one understandable origin

  • Karze

    Its seems that only place where Chinese don’t need permit for residency is Tibet. Chinese are given all kinds of incentive to settle in Tibet and all so called goodies that Beijing gives to Tibet goes to these migrant Chinese and not Tibetans. No wonder Tibetans are minorities and marginalised group in Tibet.