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Old August 2nd, 2012, 06:30 PM   #461

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This is indeed the very argument that the Manchu emperors made to legitimize their rule over China.
Of course, considering the translated quote I corrected from Bo Wong came from a Manchu emperor.

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But it is precisely this that makes it propaganda. Bo Wong is guilty of being an ultra-nationalist and overusing Mark Elliott's The Manchu Way, but it is just as terrible to prop up propaganda.
Nationalism itself is propaganda as countries are artificial constructs existing solely within the human mind. Why should Manchu "propaganda" be less legitimate than the propaganda of other nations? The case in-point is that official governments from the Qing to Empire to Nationalist to Communist China accepted this "propaganda" as the official way to view themselves.
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Old August 2nd, 2012, 06:56 PM   #462
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The Japanese also ruled China during WWII, maybe they should be considered a Chinese Empire dynasty?

The Chinese people don't consider the Manchus to be Chinese, the Manchus don't consider themselves to be Chinese, yet you consider them to be Chinese?

I just proved that the Manchus aren't Chinese. Yes, they ruled over China as the last dynasty of China, but it wasn't a Chinese dynasty.

The U.S. occupied Japan after WWII, maybe the Japanese should deny this as the American occupation, and call it the Japanese occupation? Even though the Americans don't consider themselves to be Japanese, you can still call it a Japanese occupation?
Get your facts straight. The Japanese did not maintain direct rule over China. They did so under a puppet government headed by Wang Jingwei, which was known as the Reorganized Republic of China.
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Old August 2nd, 2012, 07:10 PM   #463
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Originally Posted by HackneyedScribe View Post
Nationalism itself is propaganda as countries are artificial constructs existing solely within the human mind. Why should Manchu "propaganda" be less legitimate than the propaganda of other nations? The case in-point is that official governments from the Qing to Empire to Nationalist to Communist China accepted this "propaganda" as the official way to view themselves.
The question is, rather, why should Manchu propaganda be more legitimate than the propaganda of other nations? You started off on the wrong foot.

But there is a better answer for utilitarians: given that all political entities are constructs, why would you support the one that benefits you less? Manchu propaganda was designed to serve the Manchus. Those labeled Han Chinese during the Qing did not benefit from it in the same way.

Hence, the Han nationalist ideology of Bo Wong. Han nationalism benefits Han Chinese. Under your logic, he has every cause to support the ideology that benefits him, rather than the ideology that benefits another group.
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Old August 2nd, 2012, 07:16 PM   #464

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The question is, rather, why should Manchu propaganda be more legitimate than the propaganda of other nations? You started off on the wrong foot.
Wrong foot? Not really. The foremost assumption should be that all propaganda should have the same legitimacy, and should one set of propaganda be held in higher/lesser regard than others, then the justification for said set must be provided. That should be the logical jumping off point, rather than have pre-conceived notions be the jumping off point.

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But there is a better answer for utilitarians: given that all political entities are constructs, why would you support the one that benefits you less? Manchu propaganda was designed to serve the Manchus. Those labeled Han Chinese during the Qing did not benefit from it in the same way.

Hence, the Han nationalist ideology of Bo Wong. Han nationalism benefits Han Chinese. Under your logic, he has every cause to support the ideology that benefits him, rather than the ideology that benefits another group.
I did not think my post was about utilitarianism. The Chineseness of the Qing came from the official standpoint of from the Qing down to present China. The point is that Qing propaganda succeeded. Should the national standpoint be that only Han could be Chinese, then Han nationalism would have succeeded and Bo Wang may as well be right. This is like how there is an official agreement that the color "blue" is the color of the ocean or sky. Whether one individual thinks otherwise is negligible when compared to the official consensus.

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Old August 2nd, 2012, 07:24 PM   #465
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Wrong foot? Not really. The foremost assumption should be that all propaganda should have the same legitimacy, and should one set of propaganda be held in higher/lesser regard than others, then the justification for said set must be provided. That should be the logical jumping off point, rather than have pre-conceived notions be the jumping off point.
Except it is the opposite - the foremost platform should be that all propaganda have the same illegitimacy, because it is, by definition, propaganda.

But even that is incorrect. All the principles that you term propaganda are not equivalent to one another. Using a broad brush to paint through the entirety of ideology space belies a commitment to simplifying beliefs, rather than objective methods. I fail to see how all political ideas are equally constructed.

Certainly, it fails to convince me that a grassroots ideology such as modern nationalism is equivalent to an elite ideology such as the Manchu right of conquest.

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I did not think my post was about utilitarianism. The Chineseness of the Qing came from the official standpoint of from the Qing down to present China. The point is that Qing propaganda succeeded. Should the national standpoint be that only Han could be Chinese, then Han nationalism would have succeeded and Bo Wang may as well be right. This is like how there is an official agreement that the color "blue" is the color of the ocean or sky. Whether one individual thinks otherwise is negligible when compared to the official consensus.
The PRC supports Qing propaganda for its own political purposes. To say that the PRC view is supported by the rest of the world is, however, fallacious.

I hope you're not saying that the PRC view is the legitimate view simply by virtue of it being the PRC view.
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Old August 2nd, 2012, 07:29 PM   #466

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Except it is the opposite - the foremost platform should be that all propaganda have the same illegitimacy, because it is, by definition, propaganda.
Then by that there is no such thing as Chinese, German, French, or American. Remember our discussion is based off of what I said: "Nationalism itself is propaganda as countries are artificial constructs existing solely within the human mind. Why should Manchu "propaganda" be less legitimate than the propaganda of other nations?"

Such an assumption would miss the point of the discussion. Let me put it this way: All ideas should be given the same weight until "valid reason" is given that certain ideas are more solid than others. People should not assume that some ideas are better than others until given a valid reason. You say that YongZheng's statement is simply Manchu propaganda and conclude that this makes his idea illegitimate. Yet this is the same type of propaganda held by all nations, as all nations are artificial constructs. You must prove why his "propaganda" is less valid than the others. To do otherwise is to display circular reasoning.

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The PRC supports Qing propaganda for its own political purposes. To say that the PRC view is supported by the rest of the world is, however, fallacious.

I hope you're not saying that the PRC view is the legitimate view simply by virtue of it being the PRC view.
Which country does not? Do you think that the American government parties would support its own political purposes by claiming it was a foreign government? I think it would serve their purpose for American governments to claim that they are American. As heavenlykaghan have shown the Manchus believed in their own propaganda quite readily. Also, you'd think Chinese governments(not just the PRC, mind you) would have more say about what is Chinese than non-Chinese ones.

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Old August 2nd, 2012, 07:40 PM   #467
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Originally Posted by HackneyedScribe View Post
Then by that there is no such thing as Chinese, German, French, or American. Remember our discussion is based off of what I said: "Nationalism itself is propaganda as countries are artificial constructs existing solely within the human mind. Why should Manchu "propaganda" be less legitimate than the propaganda of other nations?"

Such an assumption would miss the point of the discussion. Let me put it this way: All ideas should be given the same weight until "valid reason" is given that certain ideas are more solid than others. People should not assume that some ideas are better than others until given a valid reason. You say that YongZheng's statement is simply Manchu propaganda and conclude that this makes his idea illegitimate. Yet this is the same type of propaganda held by all nations, as all nations are artificial constructs. You must prove why his "propaganda" is less valid than the others. To do otherwise is to display circular reasoning.
I need not do any such thing, because it has already been done for me. Yongzheng's statement in no way mirrored the policies of the Qing government, and a student of Chinese history should know that.

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Which country does not? Do you think that the American government parties would support its own political purposes by claiming it was a foreign government? I think it would serve their purpose for American governments to claim that they are American. As heavenlykaghan have shown the Manchus believed in their own propaganda quite readily. Also, you'd think Chinese governments(not just the PRC, mind you) would have more say about what is Chinese than non-Chinese ones.
That is why it's not up to governments to tell us what to believe.
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Old August 2nd, 2012, 07:44 PM   #468

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That is why it's not up to governments to tell us what to believe. It's up to us to find that out ourselves. But the first step of that has to be a commitment to objective methods, and not relativistic appeals to political authority.
When it comes down to how to define nationalism, not really. In this government knows best about its own national construct by definition. Much like how Elvis has most say about what is Elvis' favorite color: it is what Elvis say it is. Ever since the first person wrote "ZhongGuo", the concept of Chinese had been evolving to this day. The Manchus weren't the first government to tweak the concept for utilitarian purposes, nor would they be the last.

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Old August 2nd, 2012, 08:02 PM   #469
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When it comes down to how to define nationalism, not really. In this government knows best about its own national construct by definition. Much like how Elvis has most say about what is Elvis' favorite color: it is what Elvis say it is.
A government is merely a politically triumphant group of people. Why do you think the PRC has better claim to what the Chinese national construct ought to be than the ROC did, except that it defeated the ROC in war?

You are doing nothing but justifying right of conquest, which is also why, I surmise, you fail to understand the dangerous angle of Yongzheng's propaganda. His appeals to ancient authority are no less than an appeal to right of conquest - it did not matter, under his world view, whether the ruler of China was Han or non-Han because, according to his selective reading, barbarians who conquered China managed to rule it in the past. So why not the Manchus? His idea is nothing less than that Chinese should be open to foreign rule because they have been ruled by foreigners before.

Indeed, Yongzheng's logic was used by the Japanese just two hundred years later to legitimize their own invasion of China: after all, the Chinese had accepted Manchu rule. Why not Japanese rule? Yet, the PRC demonize the Japanese while legitimizing the Qing. This central contradiction is precisely the nature of propaganda and why it is never legitimate.

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Old August 2nd, 2012, 08:08 PM   #470

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A government is merely a politically triumphant group of people. Why do you think the PRC has better claim to what the Chinese national construct ought to be than the ROC did, except that it defeated the ROC in war?
Last time I checked the ROC too saw the Manchus as Chinese.

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You are doing nothing but justifying right of conquest, which is also why, I surmise, you fail to see Yongzheng's propaganda. His appeals to ancient authority are no less than an appeal to right of conquest. It did not matter, under his world view, whether the ruler of China was Han or non-Han because, in his selective reading of the texts, barbarians who conquered China managed to rule it in the past. So why not the Manchus?
According to the passage I provided from Yongzheng, it "did not matter whether the ruler of China was Han or non-Han" because in the past non-Han rulers were considered as legitimate rulers(as according to, say, Confucius), so "why not the Manchus"?

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There is nothing specifically valid in Yongzheng's address besides this simple theme. Indeed, Yongzheng's view was used by the Japanese just two hundred years later to legitimize their own invasion of China: after all, Chinese have been ruled by foreigners in the past and those dynasties were still legitimized in time. So why not the Japanese? Yet the PRC demonize the Japanese while legitimizing the Qing. This central contradiction is precisely propaganda.
I am not justifying conquest of any sort. However, if the conqueror chose to call itself "X" instead of "Y", then it is named "X" instead of "Y", what are you going to do? Should the Japanese conquer all of China and then call itself "China", in which its conquered peoples also call said empire "China", then by definition "China" would mean what this new Asian empire is. It has nothing to do with right of conquest, it's simply how language works.
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