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Officials cross line with sorghum plan

By Qiao Zhifeng (Global Times)

08:25, October 22, 2012

Soon after the news broke that Chinese novelist Mo Yan had won the 2012 Noble Prize for Literature, the government of Gaomi county, Shandong Province, where Mo has long resided, announced it would invest 670 million yuan ($107 million) turning the area into a tourist attraction. Specifically, the government pledged to spend 10 million yuan creating sorghum fields modeled after those which appeared in Mo's famous novel "Red Sorghum", even if such fields operated at a loss.

While it's not entirely wrong to grow some red sorghum to commemorate the great novelist, the government is going too far if it is willing to waste such a large sum of money planting crops which will not turn a profit.

Every cent the government earns comes from tax payers, and when it comes right down to it, the tax payers should be informed of each expense made by the government. Whether or not red sorghum is grown in Gaomi county should be decided not just by the government or individual officials.

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