Thursday, March 5, 2009

Along The Great Wall of China

Lindsay and Linda and Cordell, with the restored section of the Great Wall behind us.
The tourists are only allowed to visit a short section of the Wall, which the government
monitors.  The government also owns and collects all of the profits from the shops at
the entrance to the Wall.
The wall was built by slave labor, with approximately one fifth of the population working on the wall at any given time.  Eventually, it became so onerous and hated that the workers revolted.  The wall was originally about 4,000 miles long, although the sections beyond Beijing were not nearly as big and sturdy.  About half of the wall no longer exists, much of it having been cannibalized for the building of houses.  Let's see, if 1/5 of the people worked on the wall, then how many of the rest worked to support the workers?  Can we say "emperor of China" and "megalomaniac" in the same sentence?

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