Friday, April 19, 2019

the last book I ever read (Patriot Number One: American Dreams in Chinatown by Lauren Hilgers, excerpt eleven)

from Patriot Number One: American Dreams in Chinatown by Lauren Hilgers:

Old Lin was the only one among the protest organizers who had previous experience in village governance. He knew how to organize people, although he described himself as a simple man who likes to keep to himself. “How the stomach feels is real,” he once told me, nearly a year after the election. “Everything else is illusion.”

Lin had worked as a cadre—a low-level official in the Communist Party—in the village from 1969 to 1974 after serving as a soldier in the People’s Liberation Army. Lin was appointed to serve as a village leader under Xue Chang, the man who would go on to steal most of Wukan’s land. The pair did not get along, and Old Lin left quickly. He was one of the first people to leave the village and go into business, opening up a grocery store and then going into clothing manufacturing. He had done well for himself. His relative wealth, people theorized, would make him a virtually incorruptible village leader.

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