Nothing to See Here

Li Ga / Xinhua Press / Corbis

Model communist soldier Lei Feng looms large over a road in Changsha, capital of the central Chinese province of Hunan.

Drivers who brave the northbound traffic on the third-ring road in Beijing crawl past capitalist edifices with names like the World Financial Center. Then comes a red banner strung across an overpass: STUDY LEI FENG. BE A MORAL PERSON. Lei Feng is a relic of China's communist past, a model soldier who supposedly wrote a diary chronicling his selfless, socialist existence before an unfortunate encounter with a falling telegraph pole ended his life more than half a century ago. I guarantee that the occupants of the Audis, Hyundais and occasional Ferraris inching forward in the smog are not receptive...

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