China’s` New’ National Anthem!

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More than other city in China—and maybe the world?—Shanghai has one thing on its mind: money and how to make it. That is intensely true right now, with the city wholly in the grip of stock market mania. (Market up again today, to another record.)
This can get a little tedious; you can’t go anywhere without hearing somebody talking about it. But at least we now know that some people in this town haven’t completely lost their sense of humor.
China’s national anthem, “March of the Volunteers,” was written in 1935, originally as a song for a film about the “intellectuals’ struggle” against the Japanese after the 1931 invasion, according to one reviewer. The song is “sonorous, militant and inspiring.” It became the country’s national anthem in 1949, and you can expect to hear it A LOT at next year’s Olympics in Beijing, as China wins gold medals.

But some folks here in Shanghai have now come up with new lyrics, in honor of the stock market’s crazed ride. Here are translations of the real national anthem, and the money anthem:

March of the Volunteers
Arise,
Ye who refuse to be slaves!
With our very flesh and blood,
Let us build our new Great Wall!
The peoples of China are in the most critical time,
Everybody must roar his defiance.
Arise!
Arise!
Arise!
Millions of hearts with one mind,
Brave the enemy’s gunfire, March on!
Brave the enemy’s gunfire, March on!
March on!
March on!
March on!

March of the Stock Traders

Arise, Arise, Arise,
Ye who haven’t opened an account,
With all your money
Let us invest in the tempting stock market
The People in
China are in the most
crazy time,
Everyone must roar his defiance
Up fast
Up fast
Up fast (stock market)!
Millions of hearts with one mind
Get rich quick!
More Money!
More money!
More money

Sure, a bit no doubt gets lost in translation (in Chinese for example, there’s a nifty play on words at the end: the word for “march forward” or “march on” is //qian//(second tone). Money is also //qian//, pronounced in the same tone, but of course it’s different character. Still, I give the lyricists big points for wit amidst the mad scramble here to—indeed—get rich quick.

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