In his signature, and popular, crackdowns on organized crime, Mr Bo has been accused of abusing the judicial system to ruin political enemies and private entrepreneurs. “When a person is the highest somewhere with nothing above him, then he is bound to become like a robber. If you add to that a central government title, he becomes like a tiger with wings, he is unbeatable,” mused Jin Zhongyi, head of the justice department in Haining, a southeastern Chinese city, and one of China’s most popular microbloggers with 730,000 followers.
While the Communist party’s propaganda machine used state newspapers and television to hammer home the message that Mr Bo would be dealt with “according to law” and the party remained united behind its leadership, web users forwarded posts from the Chinese novel Dream of the Red Chamber, which was written 200 years ago. Thousands of microbloggers remarked that its description of the downfall of a powerful, well-connected official read as if it had been written about Mr Bo.
Additional reporting by Zhao Tianqi
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