By Agence France-Presse
Saturday, January 12, 2013 8:51 EST
Hong Kong action hero Jackie Chan has once again provoked criticism, this time from an American blogger, after suggesting on Chinese television that the US is the “most corrupt” country in the world.
“When you talk about corruption — the whole world, is there corruption in the United States? The most corrupt in the world!” the Rush Hour star, who has made headlines recently for his controversial views, told Phoenix TV last month.
Chan reaffirmed his view after the show’s host questioned him — “Of course! Where did the great breakdown come from? The world, the United States started it,” Chan said, referring to the financial crisis and gesticulating as he spoke.
His comments were rebuked Thursday by Max Fisher, a foreign affairs blogger for the Washington Post, who called them “anti-American” rhetoric that was rooted in China’s insecurity.
“To the degree that Chan’s comments were anti-American, they likewise reflect a common Chinese view of the United States, one that is rooted not just in attitudes toward America but in China’s proud but sometimes insecure view of itself,” Fisher said.
Jackie Chan also said China is a relatively young country, where in the first half of its history it was “bullied by so many people”, and that it only achieved “real success” in the past decade.
“Our country’s leaders admit they are corrupted, etcetera. We are improving — I can see our country is constantly improving and learning,” he said, adding that everyone is making an issue out of China because it is “powerful” now.
Chan, who is known for his martial arts skills and daring stunt work, sparked criticism in Hong Kong, which was returned to China in 1997, after he reportedly told a Chinese magazine last December that protest in the city should be restricted.
In the same interview, he said that he was bullied by Hong Kong triads and had to hide in the United States. He also said he needed to carry a gun everyday to protect himself, leading to a police investigation.
By David Edwards
Monday, January 14, 2013 11:15 EST
Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) on Monday said that she would be willing force a “thoughtful” shutdown of parts of the United States government if President Barack Obama did not agree to deep spending cuts.
“What we want to make certain is that this president, this administration, this bureaucracy realizes that kicking the can must stop,” she told MSNBC’s Chris Jansing. “It is spending cuts and it is imperative that we reduce the size of the federal government, that we get in on a mega-diet, that we end this out-of-control spending.”
“There is the option of government shutdown,” the Tennessee Republican continued. “There is an option of raising the debt ceiling in short-term increments… There’s also the plan of three dollars in cuts for every one dollar of debt limit increase. So, the healthy thing is this, we are having a good discussion on it.”
Jansing pointed to a study by the Bipartisan Policy Center which found that the government could continue to fund interest on the debt, Social Security, Medicare, food stamps during a shutdown — but it would mean that almost every other federal program would grind to a halt.
“[B]ut doing all that will mean defaulting on everything — really, everything — else,” The Washington Post‘s Ezra Klein wrote last week. “The FBI will shut down. The people responsible for tracking down loose nukes will lose their jobs. The prisons won’t operate. The biomedical researchers won’t be funded. The court system will close its doors. The tax refunds won’t go out. The Federal Aviation Administration will go offline. The parks will close. Food safety inspections will cease.”
“I think that there is a way to avoid default,” Blackburn insisted. “If it requires shutting down certain portions of the government, let’s look at that. Let’s put these option on the table, be very thoughtful, but get this spending pattern broken. We cannot afford a $4 billion a day deficit and trillion dollar plus deficits every single year.”
“So, it requires thoughtfulness and it requires that we are going to have a plan to work through this. I think that’s where we as Republicans are headed.”
Watch this video from MSNBC’s Jansing & Co., broadcast Jan. 14, 2013.
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