Liar, Liar….More on the Fire

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Some stunning pictures of the fire here at Commetary on the site also points to what appears o be orders to th Chinese press to tone down coverge of the fire. On the night of the accident (if that’s the right word) local radio went to town with breathless coverage. The nothing the next day. The popular Xinjingbao tabloid had a small picture and article the next day and generally coverage (in Beijing; elsewhere was another story) was muted to say the least. (There’s more on the censorrship and a selection of photoshopped pictures of the fire by netizens, some of them fairly droll, at; and for an explanation of the characters on a number of the pictures, which translate literally as “grass dirt horse” but really mean something completely different and much more entertaining, see here) But now as Austin says CCTV has admitted that its employees ignored police warnings and used extra-strength firecrackers in the building, the story is back in the news. Typical of the schizophrenia that censorship induces n the Chines media where so many bright and highly talented people labor under conditions that are hard for outsiders to comprehend. Speaking of CCTV and propaganda, one of our commenters (CW) left this zinger of a comment about the blaze (reminder: as Austin has noted, the adjacent CCTV Tower, part of the same complex and designed by the renowned Rem Koolhaas is nicknamed “Big Underpants” by Beijingers for its remblance to over-starched boxer shorts): Liar, liar, underpants on fire.