I had just returned from China yesterday and was in town for a few hours before having to take off again so I grabbed a China Daily to catch up on what China wanted us folks at the Watergate to know about all things Middle Kingdom.
I think that there are occasionally some terrific, serious articles in the state-run paper, but very frequently Fallows is right that a good number of them give The Onion a run for its money.
This article is a case in point of a retired factor worker in China vowing to continue a quest to cash a $10 million treasury bond "despite being told that the document is an obvious fake."
Lines like this are priceless:
"This is a conspiracy by the United States government," [the worker] said from his suburban home in Weifang, East China's Shandong province. "I know they (the US) won't want to admit this so I will go to Beijing to seek help from television (media) and scholars."
"The dollar bond may be counterfeit but I still don't think my father and grandfather cheated me," he added firmly.
"I want to cooperate with someone who can help me," he said. "I was planning to trade this (the US Treasury bond) in for some money so I can live a better life, and then donate the rest to the country."
But what surprised me most about the issue I took with me on the plane is that the editors decided to print in full -- every last word -- of a densely written "White Paper on the Socialist System of Laws with Chinese Characteristics" issued by the Information Office of the State Council. The piece ran with a smaller than normal font over five full pages of the newspaper. The headline for the piece: "Socialist Democracy Milestone."