Two days ago, I got a letter in the mail. That's a pretty rare occurrence here. It was from the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs. I thought, "Well, the jig is up. I guess I'm being sent home."
Unfortunately, that wasn't it.
No, they are giving me a free one-month subscription to China Daily, the state-run English-language newspaper. The letter says it's to help me "tell the story of a more comprehensive, genuine and vivid China to the world."
Why me? Well, it's not everyone here. Maybe it was random. Or maybe they've watched my Internet usage and listened to my conversations and are starting with a very under-the-radar correction.
I'm not opposed to reading China Daily; some of the more-obvious bits of propaganda would make good blog post material. But the letter tells me nothing about how I'm going to actually get my newspapers. So maybe I'm not actually being targeted for propaganda at all. I'm more being made aware that some foreign experts are being targeted. But maybe I'm not cool enough to be an actual target myself.
If they think one month of access to propaganda is going to win me over, while they continue to set the conditions for a currency depreciation of over 15 percent, they don't really understand what matters to me right now.