For half a year now, one group of people has been arguing that the left is no good, and that the right is no good either, and have put forward as an alternative a kind of centrist view. Rejecting both the right-wing faction and the left-wing faction, they tell the world that it is they themselves who occupy the central position. This kind of thing does not appear much in Guangdong but is quite common in the Jiangsu-Zhejiang area. Because in Guangdong, the left is Guangzhou and the right is Hong Kong. Those who take a stand beneath the Guangzhou banner invariably are opposed to Hong Kong, and those who stand beneath the Hong Kong banner are invariably opposed to Guangzhou. The counterrevolutionary faction, led by Chen Jiongming and made up of military men, politicians, compradors, local bullies, and bad gentry, stands under the Hong Kong banner, while the workers, peasants, soldiers, students, merchants, and revolutionary popular masses of all kinds, led by the left wing of the Guomindang, stand beneath the Guangzhou banner. Thus the two sides bombard each other with their cannons. There can be no centrist faction in the midst of this bombardment. If there is, it has to cover up its head and face and hide under the banner of one of the factions, speak softly and tread lightly. Anyone who wanted to stand between Guangzhou and Hong Kong would have to proclaim that “Hong Kong is no good, and Guangzhou is no good either,” in which case the cannons both of Hong Kong and of Guangzhou would certainly be aimed directly at him. At present there are as yet no big guns bombarding each other in the Jiangsu-Zhejiang area, so the argument that “both sides are no good” is very popular there. On May 30 of this year, 1 the cannons of one side boomed out in the Nanjing area. Fortunately the other side did not have any cannons, only some 291fists that couldn’t return the salvo. Since a chaotic situation of direct confrontation had not yet come about (the brief labor strike didn’t amount to anything), it was still possible to promote openly the argument that “both sides are no good” and to “remain upright between the two, preserving freedom in the realm.” But let us assume a hypothetical situation in which those popular masses on Nanjing Road had not only their fists but also cannons; that they were under the leadership of Wang Jingwei and Chiang Kaishek; that they demolished that police station with one blow and then went on to occupy the Municipal Council, capturing all those “red-headed types”; that they had then immediately sealed off the mouth of the Wusong River and set up cannons at Nantang, Beitang, and at Shizilin (as was done at Humen), and over the gun emplacements had raised the banner “Bombard Imperialism.” 2 At this point, Shanghai would have unfortunately fallen into the same “chaotic situation” as Guangzhou, would have set up a defense headquarters, would have asked men like Mr. Wang Maogong 3 to take command, and would have patrolled the streets every day in their military vehicles. Newspapers like the China Times 4 would certainly be closed, and possibly even the Awakened Lion Weekly 5 could not have avoided the same fate. Freedom of speech would be allowed only to those in the majority, while those in the minority would have their free speech taken away from them, exactly the opposite of the situation prevailing previously. At this point, the centrist faction, just as in the case of Guangzhou, would not be able to make propaganda openly. Then what? Of course, there is still Beijing. But Beijing cannot be counted on for long, for it all depends on the stability of the position of the chief executive, Duan Qirui. As long as Duan’s position is secure, there’s no problem. Not only can the Guomindang Comrades Club hang its signboard on high, the Fourth Plenary Session of the Central Executive Committee can also hold its meetings there. It would be freer than Zhangjiakou. But even as I say this, I am still today a little confused. Why is it that the Fourth Plenary Session of the Central Executive Committee couldn’t be held in Zhangjiakou? Isn’t it under the direct control of the Duan Qirui government? If Chief Executive Duan Qirui wasn’t there—just a minute—even if Chief Executive Duan was there, it would be hard to 292avoid something unexpected happening. Haven’t we heard that two men were grabbed, forced into a car and driven into the city, beaten up, and then made to write confessions? Ai! When even under the direction of Chief Executive Duan such terrible things as this occur, it’s really hard to say what will happen in this world! Even more distressing is the fact that, according to a telegram from the Beijing executive office, a revolutionary movement took place on November 28 in which the townspeople surrounded and attacked the executive office in an attempt to drive Duan Qirui out. The telegram also states that the first of the three articles making up the resolution on the National Assembly provided for organizing a national government. (Most unfortunate! It would naturally be modelled on that of Guangzhou.) Also, according to a Reuters telegram: “In the demonstration in Beijing on the 28th, the students carried the Guangzhou flag, the workers carried the red flag, and there was no national flag in sight. The marchers distributed propaganda leaflets calling for such things as the overthrow of Duan Qirui, the punishment of Zhu Shen, 6 the execution of traitors, the dissolution of the Customs Conference, a national people’s army, a popular mass revolution, and a real National Assembly.” In the Shishi Xinbao, the headline preceding the telegram from Duan Qirui read, “Shocking Demonstration”! What should we do? There has been another “shocking demonstration” here. If in the future some “National Government” should really be organized, and if the “Guangzhou flag” is flown high above the rooftops of that government, wouldn’t this stir up yet another “chaotic situation” like that of Guangzhou? And furthermore, this “chaotic situation” might spread throughout the nation as place after place follows suit, as the majority of the people rise up for “freedom” and insist on “no freedom” for the minority. Gentlemen standing in the middle! Tell us, please, what is to be done? [Will you] go left? Or [will you] go right?