Marketing, Propaganda or Marketing Propaganda

During a recent trip to China, I stopped by a store in Wuxi that displayed this slogan:

Wuxinees Admire Virtues and Wuxi is A Trustworthy City For Consumption

I am certain that the sign would have been better off without the English translation. The sign isn’t suffering from the typical “Chinglish” problem. Instead, the slogan seems like a line taken out of a Cultural Revolution poster with the effect that it instantly breeds suspicion and distrust. And, this is not just a Chinese issue. When any salesperson starts bragging about how trustworthy they are, clutch your wallet or purse tightly, real tightly because someone is about to get fleeced.

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