The Chinese, to suppress dissent and avoid an Arab spring of their own, are once again cracking down on Internet companies.
According to the Associated Press (8/27/11) the Chinese government has instructed Internet hosting companies to "strengthen management and firmly prevent the spread of fake and harmful information." Presumably all information that runs contrary to the official Communist Party line is "fake and harmful." "Propaganda guidance to the public should be led toward a correct direction," the government's order explained.
The Chinese employ over a hundred people to read, monitor, and approve postings on the Internet. So strict is their censorship that Google closed its search engine there last year.
China has also moved to limit accesss by its 485 million Internet users - the largest such population in the world - to foreign websites.
Simply put, the Chinese government reserves the right to define what is true and "correct" for its population. And what is true and correct does not sound like freedom of speech, assembly, or religion - not in China anyway.
But what can you do? The Chinese government holds all the cards, so they are able to call the shots for those who have become dependent on them.
Like the United States government is becoming increasingly dependent on China? "The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is the slave of the lender" (Prov. 22.7). It was not without reason that God warned His people not to become dependent on foreign nations (Deut. 15.6) - a sentiment echoed, after a fashion, by our nation's first president.
China continues to increase its holdings of US debt. Which means that American lawmakers, in order to prop up the entitlement programs they have created as ways of purchasing political power from the electorate, are continuing to mortgage the country to a government that despises truth, strictly limits freedom, and is continuing to build its military base beyond what any semblance of national defense might require.
We are governed by fools, beloved, who are putting the future of our nation - and the freedoms that go with it - into the hands of people for whom freedom is simply something to suppress. And why? To continue to fund the entitlement programs that keep the people voting for them election after election. And we are fools if we continue to look the other way, for our own comfort and peace, while our elected officials betray our nation's values and freedoms.
We are making ourselves slaves to those who regard our freedoms as "fake and harmful." If we continue this policy, we can be sure that the freedoms we enjoy today will not be considered "correct" in the future.
Related texts: Deuteronomy 15.6; Proverbs 22.7; Romans 13.8
A conversation starter: "Does it sit well with you to think that our nation is becoming a slave-state of the Chinese?"