An Illustration

A businessman in the People’s Republic of China, Ren Zhiqiang—who also is a member of the Communist Party of China—has been for some time an outspoken critic of PRC President Xi Jinping’s handling of the nation’s COVID-19 epidemic, a mishandling that allowed an early infection to blow out of control within the PRC and to become a global pandemic.

Outspoken critic: among other things, Ren wrote a widely disseminated essay that took issue with a 23 Feb speech by Xi. He wrote of a

“crisis of governance” within China’s Communist Party and blamed restrictions on freedom of speech and the press for slowing down the response to combat the novel coronavirus, thereby worsening the outbreak.


…after analyzing the President’s [Xi’s] speech he “saw not an emperor standing there exhibiting his ‘new clothes,’ but a clown stripped naked who insisted on continuing being emperor[.]”

Then Ren posted on Weibo

When does the people’s government turn into the party’s government? … Don’t waste taxpayers’ money on things that do not provide them with services.

Then his post was deleted, his Weibo account blocked. Ren also has been put on “probation” from the CPC.

And now he’s gone missing, making his point beautifully.

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