Mao Zedong’s grandson attracts more ridicule online

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 27 June, 2013, 5:44pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 27 June, 2013, 5:52pm

Mao Xinyu, the well-known grandson of Mao Zedong, has again attracted ridicule from Chinese internet users following reports that a new institute this week invited him to be its honorary chairman.

The decision was made at the launch ceremony of Yugongyishan (from “Yugong” - moving mountains) Spirit Research Institute on Tuesday, which marked the 68th anniversary of a famous speech by Mao Zedong, Chinanews.com reported. The speech by China’s first communist leader had encouraged party members to strive hard to overcome difficult challenges.

The speech had made reference to a Chinese myth where an old man, called “Yugong”, showed great determination moving two mountains blocking a road in front of his home. The moral of the story is that people can resolve any challenge if they try.

At the launch, institute chairman Li Changduo said: “The spirit of Yugongyishan is now playing an essential role directing China’s social and economic development.”

The event attracted much attention on Chinese cyberspace - with tens of thousands commentators mocking the institute’s relationship with Mao Xinyu - who has frequently made headlines for his outrageous comments and comical behaviour. One internet user said commented on the news: “I think they are deliberately making fun of Mao Xinyu.”

Yet many others questioned the need to have the institute.

“What’s the use of an institute researching a myth,’’ one online user commented on sina. Another asked “Why not study ways to improve people’s livelihoods, instead?”

A different blogger suggested the “Yugongyishan spirit” should be used to fight corruption.