The People's Republic of China is a country that cheats. And the Summer Olympic Games have given China ample opportunity to prove that.
First they cheated at the opening ceremonies by faking the fireworks for broadcast. Their reason was that they wouldn't be able to film the fireworks from the air, so they used computer graphics to show TV viewers what the people in Beijing were seeing.
Then the news came out that the cute little girl who sang the "Hymn to the Motherland" was just lip-synching. The real singer wasn't cute enough to be on camera representing all of China, even though her voice was good enough for that.
And all those children representing the 56 different ethnic groups in China were fake too. Oh, they were really children, but they were all from the beautiful Han ethnic group.
But that wasn't enough cheating for China. They started messing with the women's gymnastics by entering little girls into the competition and claiming the girls with baby teeth are 16 years old. Just late bloomers.
The AP raised the issue about the gymnasts' age near the end of July, but the weak-kneed IOC accepted the girls' passports saying they're plenty old to compete. Fox Sports reported on more controversy arising during the Olympics, pointing out the frustration of Chinese officials over the issue.
Lu said the governing body of gymnastics has already been given some of the requested documents, turning over He's current and former passport, ID card and family residence permit Thursday. Lu said the documents all say she was born in 1992, which would have made her eligible to compete.
"Surely it's not possible that these documents are still not sufficient proof of her birthdate?" Lu asked. "The passports were issued by the Chinese Foreign Ministry. The identity card was issued by China's Ministry of Public Security. If these valid documents are not enough to clarify this problem, then what will you believe?"
"If you trust every Web site but not a government...," Lu said. "There are so many Web sites, so much hearsay. These are not official. Is it possible that all news on the Internet is accurate?"
Hmmm.... The internet is extremely accurate. And I don't trust the Chinese government, because they cheat.
The Los Angeles Times reported yesterday that physicians and forensic doctors have suggested using x-rays to determine the gymnastics girls' ages.
The task is so straightforward that Dr. Peter Hampl, president of the American Board of Forensic Odontology, said the Chinese government should just consent to X-rays and let the films speak for themselves."If there is nothing to be afraid of, let their kids be X-rayed," he said.
"It's almost incriminating if they don't."
But that wouldn't be the end of China's cheating. Wired reported Friday that the national anthems played at the Beijing Olympics are also in question.
Peter Breiner, who arranged more than 200 national anthems for the 2004 Olympics, has accused the Beijing Olympic Committee of stealing those works for this year's Games. He says he is "100 percent sure" that his arrangements are being played at medal ceremonies -- and the Washington Post's culture critic couldn't agree more.
"First, the Slovak orchestra is much better than the Beijing orchestra, which suffers from shrill upper-string sound," writes Philip Kennicott, of the Post. "More to the point, the Beijing orchestra is using Breiner's ideas so blatantly that it would be accused of plagiarism if its arrangers submitted their orchestration as original work in any respectable conservatory. It isn't just the rockets' red glare: Breiner's basic conception of the whole piece has been copied."
So China has shown itself to be run by frauds, cheats, liars, and thieves. What else is left? Well, they're also destructive toward their own people. The Times Online (UK) reported today that China has caused a drought for the sake of the Olympics.
THOUSANDS of Chinese farmers face ruin because their water has been cut off to guarantee supplies to the Olympics in Beijing, and officials are now trying to cover up a grotesque scandal of blunders, lies and repression.
In the capital, foreign dignitaries have admired millions of flowers in bloom and lush, well-watered greens around its famous sights. But just 90 minutes south by train, peasants are hacking at the dry earth as their crops wilt, their money runs out and the work of generations gives way to despair, debt and, in a few cases, suicide.
In between these two Chinas stands a cordon of roadblocks and hundreds of security agents deployed to make sure that the one never sees the other.
The People's Republic of China doesn't give a rip for its people. Only for its image.
They say that cheaters never prosper. In China's case, I hope that proves true very soon.