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Vietnam Imposes New Blogging Restrictions

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the people-never-learn dept.

Censorship 206

GMAW is one of many to mention that the Vietnam government has approved a new set of regulations aimed at bloggers. The new restrictions ban bloggers from discussing certain subjects that the government deems sensitive or inappropriate. Not only are the topics limited, but bloggers are being directed to only write about issues that directly impact their personal lives. "The rules, which were approved Dec. 18, attempt to rein in Vietnam's booming blogosphere. It has become an alternative source of news for many in the communist country, where the media is state-controlled. The new rules require Internet companies that provide blogging platforms to report to the government every six months and provide information about bloggers on request."

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Necessity (1, Interesting)

Jzanu (668651) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236751)

This is likely to be an extremely unpopular view but there are very legitimate reasons for a state to seek limits in the distribution of news, and limits to what its citizens communicate to outsiders. Most of these actions truly do have the welfare of the citizens and their crucial security in mind. These things are done to preserve their life most of the time.

Those of you raised in the west or who have lived your lives mostly in the west may not understand or remember the reality of living in weaker states. It is not my intent to write a thesis or anything approaching that so I'll stop this here. Just think about the real situation in Vietnam before going off on the usual tangents and starting the usual crusades.

Re:Necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236767)

Is your name Arthur Scargill, perchance?

Re:Necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236781)

Adolf? Is that you?

Re:Necessity (3, Insightful)

FlyingHuck (1135427) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236819)

Yeah, I have thought about the real situation in Vietnam: a small tin hat group of asshats who will stop at nothing to manage and control the society in which they govern. Being a "small" or a "weak" state militarily these days means nothing... good countries (as in the freedom loving kind) will always find friends amongst strong free states. Unfortunately, the same is true for communist states. Keep drinking the koolaid, friend. I know, communism just needs a little more tweaking and adjustment in order to work... it's sound in theory... ad nauseum.

Re:Necessity (1)

Xerolooper (1247258) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236887)

Either Jzanu is being trite or he really buys into the whole oppression "for your own good" thing. Which is telling in itself. The powers that be always try to convince you that it is in the public interest that they are oppressing you.

Re:Necessity (1)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237059)

Which doesn't mean that they don't really believe it. Its not hard to understand that a benevolent dictator would rather have distractions and sensitive subjects removed from public discourse.

The fable of "The Emporor's Clothes" is popular for a reason. Not only does it represent an issue that exists throughout the ages, but it is also a criticism of that kind of mentality.

Re:Necessity (2, Insightful)

similar_name (1164087) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236951)

I don't think I've ever truly seen a communist state. For what it's worth I've never seen a true capitalist state either. Communism like capitalism is an economic model and it has nothing to do with freedom of speech, religion or human rights.

The closest thing perhaps to communism would be the isolated communities of indigenous peoples. While the closest thing to capitalism would be Hong Kong.

Re:Necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237015)

+1 Truth

Re:Necessity (5, Insightful)

rohan972 (880586) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237071)

Communism like capitalism is an economic model and it has nothing to do with freedom of speech, religion or human rights.

Communism as espoused by Marx and Engels in the Communist Manifesto required the use of public education as an instrument of social control, the destruction of the traditional family and the destruction of traditional religion.

"There are, besides, eternal truths, such as Freedom, Justice, etc. that are common to all states of society. But Communism abolishes eternal truths, it abolishes all religion, and all morality, instead of constituting them on a new basis"

"The Communists have not invented the intervention of society in education; they do but seek to alter the character of that intervention"

"Abolition of the family! Even the most radical flare up at this infamous proposal of the Communists."


There is of course some context to these quotes, which you can check out for yourself - http://www.gutenberg.org/files/61/61.txt [gutenberg.org]

I don't think it is unreasonable to use the Communist Manifesto to answer the question "What is communism?". The answer most definitely has everything to do with freedom of speech, religion and human rights.

Re:Necessity (1)

similar_name (1164087) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237369)

'In the schema of historical materialism, communism is the idea of a free society with no division or alienation, where mankind is free from oppression and scarcity. A communist society would have no governments, countries, or class divisions. In Marxist theory, socialism is the intermediate system between capitalism and communism, when the government is in the process of changing the means of ownership from privatism, to collective ownership.'wikipedia [wikipedia.org]

I don't think it is unreasonable to use the Communist Manifesto to answer the question "What is communism?".

I will concede that you have a point though.

Re:Necessity (1)

Al Dimond (792444) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237157)

Disclamer: IANA Expert on Communism... but I did sleep in a Holiday Inn Express last night (err... I mean, I have read the Communist Manifesto)

In the Communist Manifesto Marx calls freedom of the press a "bourgeois freedom". Although I don't think he called outright for censorship as necessary for Communism, he certainly didn't think press freedom was an important concern.

I also don't buy the idea that Communism is just an economic model. Again, I've only read the Manifesto and a couple other excerpts from Marx and Engels, but they wrote about a lot more than economics. They wrote about history, social movements and revolutions, and the implications their economic ideas would have on Communist society. They also agitated for Communist revolutions. It's easier to claim capitalism is just about economics, but I don't think this is true in practice either. It's long been held that markets can only have rational outcomes when their participants are accurately informed, for one thing, and that implies a social program facilitating free flow of information and transparency on the part of the holders of capital.

Re:Necessity (2)

jacks0n (112153) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237277)

While you are correct, the Communism being referred to is the history-free Communism-lite popular on college campuses which really amounts to nothing more than a kindergarten-level notion that 'sharing is good'.

Re:Necessity (1)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237707)

When you hear the word "bourgeois" in a 19th century context, substitute the word "professional" for a better understanding.

Re:Necessity (1)

SerpentMage (13390) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236825)

I used to think like you actually.

About 10 years ago I got into a discussion with an American on the topic of what you can say and cannot say. It happened to be around Ernst Zundel in Canada. I said it was quite alright for the state to censor speech, etc, etc.

My American friend said, "oh really..."

He then put up the argument and said, "With him muzzled will he stop thinking what he is thinking? Will it stop his cronies to stop thinking what he is? Will it even stop the hate?"

I argued many things and basically he smiled at me and said, "maybe one of these days you will understand what I mean."

Then that day hit. It was when Austria elected this right wing nut job. At the time all of the sudden EVERYBODY in the EU put up embargos on this guy. Was he an Ernst Zundel? No. Was he a nice guy and a centerist? Not even close.

What bothered me was that the EU would slam this Austrian guy (BTW he died recently), yet the communists in the former East Germany can keep saying the things that they do. After all the Communists NEVER did anything wrong...

So I realized my good American friend was right... There is no benefit to seeking limits of speech...

Re:Necessity (1)

Jzanu (668651) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237111)

So for the reason that you did not understand something, you did not work to find out the actual causes of that counter point, but instead somehow changed all of your thoughts on a larger subject? That doesn't seem accurate. Will you explain more?

Re:Necessity (4, Insightful)

Man On Pink Corner (1089867) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237319)

I think what he's saying is that governments who drive subversive speech underground aren't really doing themselves, or their citizens, any favors. Ideas don't need sunlight to grow.

Look at the US's case. We don't criminalize any speech, really, except kiddie porn and direct incitements to violence. (The McCain-Feingold campaign funding law is an arguable subject but there it's funding and timing, not content as such, that is involved.) So any nutcase with a chip on his shoulder can propagate the most outlandish, hateful tripe you could imagine. Things that would get him prosecuted in much of the EU, or executed in China.

What happens as a result? Not a damn thing. The resulting cacophony of dissidence just raises the "noise floor" of popular discourse. No radical point of view gains any more traction than it would have if it were aggressively suppressed by the government; if anything, we've become a more conservative nation since the Internet gave the nutcases their soapbox.

Suppressing speech is always pointless at best, and more likely counterproductive.

Re:Necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236827)

Sure we are used to our government covering things up for our own good. Like alien contact a portal to other worlds in Colorado a "gate" to another "star" if you will.

Well done, comrade. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236841)

This blog posting is officially sanctioned and approved for dissemination by the Communist Party of Vietnam.

All hail our democratically elected and ever-benevolent overlord, Nguyen Minh Triet.

Re:Necessity (4, Funny)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236845)

So what you're saying is that in Vietnam, it's possible to die in a Blogging accident?

Re:Necessity (1)

moose_hp (179683) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236973)

Actually, according Google trends [google.com] , thats a real treat in Norway and San Francisco, CA, USA.

Re:Necessity (1)

corbettw (214229) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236915)

This is likely to be an extremely unpopular view but there are very legitimate reasons for a state to seek limits in the distribution of news, and limits to what its citizens communicate to outsiders.

No, there aren't. There isn't even one legitimate reason for a state to censor what its citizens have to say, about anything or to anyone, as long as what they're saying is either truthful or obviously fictitious (eg, I could see not wanting someone to publish that election polling places have closed when they're still open, or the proverbial shouting fire in a crowded theater).

And while they may have the best interests of their constituents at heart, there's another proverb that relates to that: the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

Re:Necessity (3, Insightful)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236935)

I dunno if that's true. Though the only time that comes to mind is in times of (actual) war. The citizens should not allowed to publish the locations and troop strengths of army regiments, for example; it may directly endanger those soldiers.

Re:Necessity (2, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237119)

Though the only time that comes to mind is in times of (actual) war.

Governments all over the world frequently ask newspapers not to report stories.
Sometimes the Government claims 'National Security' and other times they just ask nicely.
Every now and then, a newspaper says no and a government scandal is born.

All you're really saying is that Western Nations aren't as blatant about their censorship...

Re:Necessity (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237137)

When is it (actual) war? Or, more importantly, when *isn't* it (actual) war.

Re:Necessity (1)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237459)

I was thinking primarily of the boneheaded "GLOBAL WAR ON TERROR" horseshit. (Obviously, specifics of conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan would fall under this, but that sure as hell isn't part of the same thing.)

Re:Necessity (1)

Atario (673917) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237855)

It seems to me that if some Joe Random Civilian knows enough about locations and troop strengths of army regiments to interest the enemy, then the army already screwed up. Perhaps they ought to be encouraging that kind of posting, to flush out what is already out of the bag (and perhaps to spread misinformation through people making shit up, as people will do).

No need for censorship. (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237129)

I could see not wanting someone to publish that election polling places have closed when they're still open, or the proverbial shouting fire in a crowded theater

People who are so credulous they will not check if the polling places are actually closed shouldn't vote. They will believe any promises the politicians make. As for shouting "fire!" in a crowded theater, if I can't smell smoke or see flames, I would calmly stand up and walk (not run) to the nearest exit.

I think the only limits to freedom of speech come when the words are spoken and heard as commands or as an authority. People who are in a position of leadership where their words are obeyed for some reason are responsible for the acts of their followers.

Also, when someone speaks as an authority on a subject where false information could cause damage, they should be responsible for the consequences. For instance, a doctor cannot say that he doesn't believe HIV can be transmitted through unprotected sex, the evidence to the contrary is overwhelming and the consequences of someone believing that could be deadly.

Everybody else should be free to say whatever they want

Re:No need for censorship. (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237191)

It isn't a matter of whether or not you are calm, it is a matter of whether or not the 15 people behind you exit the theatre in an orderly line, or over your dead body...

I'm no fan of speech restriction, but denying the fire in a theatre one while embracing the HIV one just makes no sense. Both are situations where, by issuing a contrafactual statement, somebody can induce (some) others to act in a manner likely to be seriously harmful to themselves and others.

Re:Necessity (0, Offtopic)

Jzanu (668651) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236917)

Look at the parent here, is it really a troll or was a moderator simply abusing the system to push down my unpopular statements?

Re:Necessity (3, Funny)

c6gunner (950153) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236985)

Look at the parent here, is it really a troll or was a moderator simply abusing the system to push down my unpopular statements?

No, it wasn't a troll. Unfortunately, due to the lack of a "-50,000 Gormless Cretin" moderation category, the "troll" rating often gets used as a substitute.

Re:Necessity (1)

Jzanu (668651) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237011)

What does it say about the person that decided to do that simply because I pointed out a side that would have otherwise been ignored?

Re:Necessity (2, Funny)

jacks0n (112153) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237139)

that he agrees with you completely?

Well played, sir (1)

xant (99438) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237383)

Wish I had mod points. mod up parent!

Re:Necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237555)

In conformance with moderator guidelines I modded it underrated because the comment improves the discussion not because I agree with it.

It's distressing how many people don't see the irony of using moderation to censor disagreeable opinions in this particular discussion.

Re:Necessity (1)

gardyloo (512791) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237149)

Just because there may be more than one side to a story doesn't mean they're all equally correct, in either a factual or moral view. A view *might* be popular because it happens to be *right*.

Re:Necessity (1)

ckedge (192996) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237565)

> because I pointed out a side that does not match the circumstances being discussed and in general violates the beliefs of the entire free world?

There, fixed that for you.

Debate clubs are just that, clubs, where arguing for or against "a side" doesn't matter. In the real world, it does matter. It matters a lot.

Re:Necessity (1)

schon (31600) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237181)

  1. You make a statement that is both contrary to common sense, and which has no historical basis.
  2. You provide precisely *zero* logical support for your statement, instead offering only a vague appeal to emotion.
  3. You make a play on the "I'll probably be modded down for this, but..."

Looks like your "troll" mod was well-deserved.

Re:Necessity (1)

Jzanu (668651) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237207)

Wrong on every point. My reference is not to emotion but to fact. Not all states are the same, and not all populations are the same. Conflicts are everywhere. On your last point, is phrasing something for what it is in the first sentence somehow discouraged here? I thought that was to let people know what they were about to read. Are you simply an idiot?

Re:Necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237323)

Reply failed at ad hominem.

Re:Necessity (1)

Jzanu (668651) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237343)

Explain that coward. It was mostly a rhetorical question. Besides, how else could he have misinterpreted every single point in my other post?

Re:Necessity (3, Insightful)

Daimanta (1140543) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237639)

Because it does not fall into the standard /. creed.

If you don't support the /. groupthink(which they say they hate but deeply love)(which is ironically doublethink) you will be downmodded as troll/flamebait/overrated. It seems that the overrated tag is made especially for this situation. Some people may disagree with a message that is not troll or flamebait so there needs to be a solution. That solution develops in the form of overrated. Overrated is nothing more than a cheap populous vote on the popularity of the opinion. Don't agree with a post? Mod it overrated/underrated to "correct" the score.

Slashdotters claim to believe in absolute freedom of speech but if your opinion is unpopular it is hidden from sight. Well, that isnt a problem because everybody can still see it via the view levels, right? True, but it obscures the message and that is all /. needs, to make it harder to see views that do not conform to groupthink. It's like the great firewall of China, people with will can surpass it but it stops most people from seeing unwanted information and that's enough for them.

Re:Necessity (4, Interesting)

Tracy Reed (3563) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236929)

Nah, it's fascist bull just as we suspected. I lived in Vietnam for a year, married a Vietnamese woman, and spend at least two weeks there every year since. They have no legitimate need to censor the net other than to keep the current corrupt officials in power.

Re:Necessity (1)

Kleen13 (1006327) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237385)

I don't agree, but come on, Troll? No way.

Re:Necessity (1)

Watson Ladd (955755) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237749)

The real situation is that people like you crawl out of the woodwork to defend corrupt, selfish, and short-sighted criminal leadership in the name of stability. There is no excuse for silencing the citizens, no excuse for sitting on a throne of bayonets. When a man is killed by the police at a protest, the man who shot him is a murderer. The state would protect him by locking him up, rather then the man who is sent to kill him. When the starving shout for food, the freezing for warmth, the forgotten for someone to care, remember that the whispers of revolution will follow any silence.

Re:Necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237917)

And when 10k die because they can not get food for lack of stability what is the right choice? Not all things are equal, and people have to be alive long enough to worry about anything else.

Re:Necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237827)

This is likely to be an extremely unpopular view but there are very legitimate reasons for a state to seek limits in the distribution of news, and limits to what its citizens communicate to outsiders.

This feels so much wrong to me. Could you (or someone else) come up with a concrete example where it would make sense for a state to "seek limits in the distribution of news, and limits to what its citizens communicate to outsiders". Honestly, this is so far from what I have learned to think, that I can not see how it could be right. But I would like to learn to understand.

Typical ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236753)

I hear they have WMD's too. Let's invade 'em.

Oh, yeah - we already tried that once ...

Re:Typical ... (1)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237481)

Typical.

Another country does something that is wrong so you have to find some way to bring US wrongs into this.

So is the story was about US war, would you mention censorship in Vietnam?

Didn't they choose Communism? (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236765)

For some reason the phrase "You made your bed, now sleep in it!" comes to mind. Although to be fair, it was technically the previous generation that made the bed.

Re:Didn't they choose Communism? (1)

TheModelEskimo (968202) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236799)

I don't think we can say that even the previous generation of Vietnamese deserve all the blame for what happened. LBJ helped make the bed, as did politicians on the other side of the Pacific. And to say that the average family supported the suppression of free speech...that might be going a little far. :-)

Re:Didn't they choose Communism? (4, Interesting)

Tracy Reed (3563) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236953)

Some of them chose communism. A lot of them didn't. Having lived and worked over there (on a Linux related project even) I know good Vietnamese there who supported South Vietnam and the US. After the south fell they spent years in re-education camps. They had been to the US in the 60's and received training on computers and electronics. Now they don't own a single thing and are kept out of any good paying job by the communists who still seek to push the former South Vietnamese. They live in poverty even poor Americans cannot imagine. It is very sad what they are doing to their own country. But the poor brainwashed people of Vietnam still support communism.

I'm not sure we can really fault the poor and uneducated who chose communism. They were starving and were just looking for a better way. They did not have access to world news or history classes from their villages and only knew what they received in the form of propaganda.

But we can definitely fault the corrupt communist leadership for taking advantage of these poor people and making millions of them pay with their lives.

Re:Didn't they choose Communism? (1)

RichardJenkins (1362463) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237141)

So have the Vietnamese authorities defined what a 'Blogger' is? Because no one else seems to have a clear definition.

Re:Didn't they choose Communism? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237033)

For some reason the phrase "You made your bed, now sleep in it!" comes to mind. Although to be fair, it was technically the previous generation that made the bed.

I would personally like to mod the summary as flamebait. Honestly, what does the financial system have to do with this whole thing?

Lots of (most of) the oppressive governments in the modern history have not been communist. Sure, any attempts to create communist states have pretty much been oppressive but that has begun before trying to implement the system. It has begun from the moment that dictators (even the ones who got to their positions after revolutions) have decided to stay as dictators and THEN with that given try to achieve communism. Not by achieving communism and at that instant turning less free.

Adding a economic model and oppressive government together is like adding the nazi germany and Christianity together. Yes, all Nazi Germanies to date have been Christian but despite me being atheist I would never try to claim that there is direct causation.

If we (with recent steps towards Internet censorship here - in a non-communist country btw - taken into account) decide to think that capitalism is somehow less oppressive by default we are quite wrong. Honestly, has not the right wing been driving down personal freedom in USA too?

But I guess that TFA did have some reason to make a connection between oppression and communism. What fair and balanced source might that have been? Oh right, the International Business Times. ;)

Disclaimer if anyone is in need of one: I am loosely associated with the left union in an European country.

No, they didn't (2, Insightful)

mangu (126918) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237201)

In case you haven't heard of it, Vietnam didn't become a communist state as a result of some democratic process. Military force [wikipedia.org] was involved, with the help of foreign [wikipedia.org] powers [wikipedia.org]

Re:Didn't they choose Communism? (2, Informative)

Clarious (1177725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237621)

Yes, the previous generation choosed communist, but it was the only way to gain independence back then. We have China (ROC) in the north, the French in the South. And the only force that can prevent us from being enslave one again is the communist.

So at least we got a bed to sleep ;)

Re:Didn't they choose Communism? (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237781)

Isn't it the People's Republic of China? The Republic of China is on Taiwan

Re:Didn't they choose Communism? (1)

Clarious (1177725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237859)

Yes, it is known as Taiwan now, back in 1945, they are still the major force in China.

Re:Didn't they choose Communism? (1)

Clarious (1177725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237879)

were*

Sorry.

So I guess no... (5, Funny)

ethicalBob (1023525) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236773)

So I guess no "me blog you long time"??

Re:So I guess no... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237371)

I wasn't aware that blogging had become a transitive pastime.

Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (2, Insightful)

FlyingHuck (1135427) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236793)

"If you understood what Communism was, you would hope, you would pray on your knees that one day we would become Communist." (speaking to students at the University of Michigan in 1970)

Yeah, I'll bet the Vietnamese are really loving that communism now. Good thing the U.S. withdrew and left an entire region of the earth to the whims of that benevolent political philosophy.

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (2)

Klaus_1250 (987230) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237045)

From a purely ideological perspective, there isn't anything wrong with communism. But in practice it utterly fails due to incompetence, corruption and selfishness. From a purely ideological perspective, there is a lot wrong with capitalism. It thrives on selfishness, inequality and stupidity but it works better than anything (well, credit crisis aside).

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (1)

Pushpabon (1351749) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237271)

Isn't socialism/communism by definition evil because it's based on violence and coercion? How can this be good in any way?

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (1)

SecurityGuy (217807) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237293)

Credit crisis included, capitalism still works better than anything else we've tried.

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (2)

FlyingHuck (1135427) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237553)

Keep in mind that the credit crisis is due to government manipulation of the free market system. During Carter's tenure (he's not just peanuts), we had the Community Reinvestment Act, then doubled-down on it during Clinton's tenure because of this absolutely insane notion that you can create legislature that will foster individual responsibility. Well, all that legislation and bailout money, over 90% of the original foreclosures are still defaulting on their new fixed rate, low interest, low amount payments. Like I said, you can't force people to be responsible.

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (1)

gary_7vn (1193821) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237945)

Except for seat belt legislation, drunk driving laws and now that I think about it, just about all the other laws, which are exactly about "forcing" people to be responsible.

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237313)

You need to define what "works" means. And after that you need arguments for the choice of your definition. And I think it is rather difficult to have "capitalism work" but please try.

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237361)

The fundamental flaw with communism is that it fails to meet the test of reality. If people were wired to be altruistic and benevelent, communism might work. But people are wired to be selfish and not all that altristic.

Capitalism is built on the idea that if you are looking out for yourself, everyone around you benefits. Maybe not directly and maybe not without some work, but it generally works out that way. Communism tries (and fails) to achive a state where everyone is looking out for each other more so than themselves. Nope. Sorry, fails basic motivation test.

What we've spent the last 160 years or so proving is that if you give people an opportunity to better their lives, they will do it - even if they have to bring some others along. Communism doesn't allow people to better themselves, only to contribute to the good of all. And people just aren't motivated that way.

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (1)

gary_7vn (1193821) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237931)

Yes, the credit crisis and the fact that 2% of the population in America controls 90% of the wealth and 50% of the income.

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237213)

Good thing the U.S. withdrew and left an entire region of the earth to the whims of that benevolent political philosophy.

And the credit for that deserves to be given to Congress, for giving up and letting the NVA do whatever it wanted after it had been repeatedly defeated in the field.

Re:Communism-- the gift that keeps on giving (2)

FlyingHuck (1135427) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237499)

Oh wise moderator... please do tell me what exactly is flamebait. If the moderator is a communist, and my anti-communism statements disagree with his philosophy, does that make me a troll?

Rambo 12: First Blog (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236805)

n/t

Communist? (4, Informative)

matt4077 (581118) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236849)

Vietnam is communism in name only (not even that since it calls itself socialist). Since 1986 Vietnam is, like China today, just yet-another undemocratic country. Communism is mostly an economic concept, and the Vietnamese economy has largely shifted to a free market system.

Re:Communist? (3, Insightful)

Tracy Reed (3563) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236969)

This is absolutely true. They have a stock market and everything. They are very capitalist in that even the communist leaders are playing the markets, making investments, and trying to acquire as much wealth as they can. The free market is definitely in effect. The big difference is that there is little transparency and no real regulations to ensure that it is a fair market. So corruption is everywhere destroying the efficiency of the market. You are right: Is is capitalism without democracy.

Re:Communist? (1)

Daimanta (1140543) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237561)

"The free market is definitely in effect. The big difference is that there is little transparency and no real regulations to ensure that it is a fair market."

Sounds like capitalism at its finest.

Re:Communist? (1)

Tracy Reed (3563) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237757)

Not at all. For capitalism to work it requires a fair market. This is why Vietnam is not really seeing the benefits of capitalism and remains quite poor with very bad infrastructure.

Re:Communist? (1)

Daimanta (1140543) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237803)

"For capitalism to work it requires a fair market."

That's why capitalism doesn't work, since it never guarantees a fair market. Only a goverment can through rules and regulations try to approach a fair market. The essence of a company is to subvert all those rules and regulations and become the most powerfull company in existance. That's how you explain abusive monopolies and lobbyists. They come from the center of all the greed of a company. The invisible hand of Adam Smith is simply a powerfull force(most of the time the government) who tries to halt unfettered growth that leads to abuse.

Re:Communist? (1)

arthurpaliden (939626) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237117)

At the end of WW2 had the western powers kept their word and given the SE Asian countries self govenment in excahnge for their resistance to Japan. We would not have had the any problems and SE Asia might well be totally democractic today.

Re:Communist? (1)

matt4077 (581118) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237367)

It should be noted, though, that many countries in Asia are doing spectacularly well compared to other parts of the world, esp. Africa. While the development is mostly economic, there has been a lot of political progress since WWII, too. Take the current "revolution" in Thailand as an example. While it'd be a disaster by western standards, it is remarkable that is has remained entirely peaceful so far.

Then there is Korea, one of the largest-scale social experiments of all times. I'm not sure if the north and south were equally developed before the war, but the contrast between the two must be the best example of how the seed of economic and political help can transform a society (that is willing and able to make the most of it).

Re:Communist? (1)

gibbsjoh (186795) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237449)

To some extent I think a lot of the economic growth (especially wrt South Korea) just had to do with Western backing and not press/individual freedoms or the "seed of... political help" as you say. South Korea lived under a dictatorship for a good part of its post-war history, but we supported their dictator against the North's Soviet-backed dictator. Wiki reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Park_Chung-hee [wikipedia.org] - the bit about torture of political opponents makes a crackdown on blogging seem tame all of Vietnam's other human rights abuses notwithstanding.

Vietnam's history is checkered with horrible abuses of its people, but so are a lot of former and current Western allies.

Just being pedantic and not sure what point I'm really trying to make... I'll get me coat.... /angrySocialistRant

Re:Communist? (2)

FlyingHuck (1135427) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237527)

The fact that your post gets 5 informative for score only leads me to believe that the moderators are firm believers in leftist ideologies. To date, there has not been a single nation of "benevolent communism" like all you pro-Marxist lemmings like to believe. I've heard a million times how communism "is perfect on paper" but it "has never been executed properly or to its original intent like Marx modeled." Shall we go down the list? Of the nations who are or have at some point claimed to be communist, please tell me which one is a shining example of freedom while at the same time exercising this "economic concept." Read Marx himself, "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs." What happens when those of us with ability don't want to take care of others' needs before our own wants and ambitions? Oh, that's right... "There is evil in your bones, Equality 7-2521!"

Re:Communist? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237531)

Vietnam is communism in name only (not even that since it calls itself socialist).

That in itself doesn't mean much. I thought most communist countries call themselves socialist, I think it still fits within the term, communism is an extreme form of socialism. Some of those countries and the communist countries that don't call themselves socialist call themselves democratic.

Vietnamese girls never fuck you (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236863)

they hate sex really western guys should stay away because you will never ever ever ever gt laid

Re:Vietnamese girls never fuck you (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236933)

I've got a couple of military contacts which may disagree with your sentiments. Not that I would condone the circumstances with which they came into contact with Vietnamese women (I.E. Voluntarily, but shady).

Posting anon so whatever this drivel of a thread gets moderated to doesn't affect my karma.

Re:Vietnamese girls never fuck you (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237251)

they fucking paid for it

oterwise they never evr give up the goods

Can only regulat "blog" not journal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26236883)

"blog" is an artificial word that even a legislature can "massage" to regulation. Anyone can regulate somthing, even a @%JIAKSDFLM can be regulated because it is artificial. A journal like a calendar, however, can't be regulated.

And this is why we have.... (1)

3seas (184403) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236955)

....anonymous re-mailers and such...hosted at universities of law.

No more "Surf Vietnam"? (1)

SoundGuyNoise (864550) | more than 5 years ago | (#26236963)

Neither on the waves nor on the net.

What the Pho? (3, Informative)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237003)

The new restrictions ban bloggers from discussing certain subjects that the government deems sensitive or inappropriate. Not only are the topics limited, but bloggers are being directed to only write about issues that directly impact their personal lives.

If I was a Vietnamese blogger, the new restrictions would directly impact my personal life.

Re:What the Pho? (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237009)

You forgot to bold the part about the topics being limited.

What!?!? (1)

bacon volcano (1260566) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237057)

I found this part of the article to be scariest:

The regulations, written by the Ministry of Information and Communications, encourage bloggers to use "clean, healthy Vietnamese language."

So no more Vietnamese 1337 5P34K? Now nobody will know who is the most 1337!

It's obvious what we need now (1)

markass530 (870112) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237081)

Rambo, or Chuck Norris, preferably both

Re:It's obvious what we need now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237253)

Or McCain to go back and drop more Napalm on gook villages, is that what you mean?

Charlie dosen't SURF! (1)

Deus.1.01 (946808) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237131)

So what use is blogging!

free as in freespeech (1)

Clarious (1177725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237563)

So free as in 'freespeech' is worse than 'free beer' here.

FYI, Vietnam is under an economic reform, but that doesn't mean more freedom for citizen, the upper leaders still want to keep a tight control for everything, they still fear what has happen to Soviet will happen again. Back in 2000 we even had a 'great firewall' like china too, though it is just a simple filter, not a grand one like the one in China :)

As a Vietnamese myself, I don't really mind about the new restriction, it has alway be like that anyway, not just the communist, but long before that, it has somewhat become one of our 'tradition'.

One last thing about our government, they aren't evil, they are just very incompetent.

The Internet is a series of tubes... (1)

jadedoto (1242580) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237591)

What if their blogs are hosted outside of Vietnam? Say, a webserver in Sweden or something?

Can't they still just use IRC or something?

Circumventable... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26237603)

"The new rules require Internet companies that provide blogging platforms to report to the government every six months and provide information about bloggers on request."

What is there to prevent me from installing a PHP blogging system on my hosting provider? Thus, my hosting provider is not, per se, a blog provider.

Or just having a blog in another country?

This sounds about as useful as CBP searching laptop contents to keep child porn out of the country, when it can easily be imported across the Internet.

Re:Circumventable... (2)

Clarious (1177725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237649)

They will arrest you directly instead.

This new 'restriction' is not really a restriction, they just need a tool to keeping a tight grip on bloggers. They already has something else to arrest anyone they want, as this is written in Vietnamese law:

- The communist party of Vietnam is the only political party in Vietnam
- All action that is against the government or the nation is strictly forbidden.
(roughly translated)

A lesson on Communism from Sirik Matak (1)

FlyingHuck (1135427) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237673)

I'm sorry if I offend any of you pro-communists out there by debating your views... actually, no, I'm not. Communism killed more than 100 million people in the last century, and self-proclaimed intellectuals will still try and say that as an economic model "it can still work... it just needs this or that or those..." For those of you who took offense to my post about it being terrible that the U.S. withdrew from Southeast Asia even after militarily pummeling the various communist groups we faced, please read the words of this letter from Sirik Matak of Cambodia to American Ambassador John Gunther Dean. His words should haunt any true believer of liberty, and the absolute crime it was for our nation to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

---

Dear Excellency and Friend:

I thank you very sincerely for your letter and for your offer to transport me towards freedom. I cannot, alas, leave in such a cowardly fashion. As for you, and in particular for your great country, I never believed for a moment that you would have this sentiment of abandoning a people which has chosen liberty. You have refused us your protection, and we can do nothing about it. You leave, and my wish is that you and your country will find happiness under this sky. But, mark it well, that if I shall die here on the spot and in my country that I love, it is no matter, because we all are born and must die. I have only committed this mistake of believing in you [the Americans].

Please accept, Excellency and dear friend, my faithful and friendly sentiments.

Sirik Matak

Obligatory movie reference... (1)

Nathrael (1251426) | more than 5 years ago | (#26237741)

Adrian Cronauer: Good morning Vietnaaa~m!
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