A friend shared an article about GG, and it got taken down by the censor in about a day. So Id like to experiment and see how good these censor sensors are. These articles are now printed by nytimes, CNN etc., which as far as I know are not blocked in China, so there is no point taking this down.

My take: I am sure all sorts of US officials also send their children to very expensive schools, and many of them are probably not qualified otherwise but they add to the diversity and quality of the schools just by being offsprings of important people (e.g. G.W. Bush). I for one think going to school with a former presidents's son adds a little extra to everyone's education, as does going to school with an African orphan.

While everyone points out the obvious improper behaviours such as ties to state corporations, funneling money though their relatives and simply taking bribes for lower level people, there is the more interesting point of how much they get paid for doing their job.

President of the USA: $400000

P.M. of Australia: $440000

P.M of Canada: $317,574

President of China: $10000

Lesser officials like members of the Senate, Parliament receives about half of that.

Toronto mayor: $167,769.94

Prime Ministers of EU countries ~$300000, other elected officials receive about the same. (France: £254330 Britain: £207000)

While not huge, these salaries are all sufficient to send their children to an okay school like Harvard. XL manages more people than them and deserves at least a third of their salaries.

In contrast, XL gets about $19000. Even worse, the chief railroad engineer of China had a salary of $264 a month (2200RMB at the time) and bought a house worth $860,000, or about 7.12 million renminbi in LA. While it is customary not to pay elected officials a big amount of money, the standards are different for a person like the chief railroad engineer. In comparison, the chief of Ontario Power Generation gets paid $2,248,768, for managing a MUCH smaller state corportation. Even the chief of West GTA Healthcare Shared Services Corporation, whatever that is, gets $300000 as does the General Manager of TTC. And tens of thousands of people in the Ontario government earn over 100k. Ontario is a small province in Canada with about 12 million people. The population of the city of Chongqing is about 28 million, where XL is party chief.

In the world overall, there is a high negative correlation between how much officials are paid vs. the level of corruption. The salary paid should be proportional to the responsibility bestowed to the job.

It should be quite clear now from these numbers why XL and other lesser Chinese officials needs to resort to all kind of troubles just to make a living. These poor people get paid a tiny fraction of their Western counterparts while doing a bigger job and managing many more people. While ideally we expect our leaders to be virtuous and do the right thing, it is only natural they have to resort to their own creativity when the system is simply not set up to provide for them. It is totally unreasonable to expect so much out of these people. Once they are paid a reasonable salary, then they can be more reasonably expected to be a man and do the right thing.

When they send their children using these creatively obtained money to some foreign school, everyone points out how there is no way their salary could support this. So fix it China, pay your officials more, so at least they can send their kids to a half decent schools like Oxford and Havard. You know Chinese parents… What has the world become when a kid in the Kennedy school of government has to publically brag about his academic record and what kind of car he drives.

As for the Ferrari and privacy, obvious the kid doesnt want any, why else would he post an article explaining it, so I am only doing him a favour by keeping this story live. or perhaps he is just explaining his preference for a Porche, which is totally cool.

References:

http://www.thecrimson.com/article/2012/4/25/guagua-statement-crimson-personal-life/

http://www.cnn.com/2012/04/25/world/asia/china-guagua-statement/

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/26/world/asia/bo-guagua-tries-to-defuse-sports-car-scandal.html

http://www.fin.gov.on.ca/en/publications/salarydisclosure/2012/

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/29/world/asia/design-flaws-cited-in-china-train-crash.html