A man on the run for a crime he didn’t commit. A sexy woman held hostage to save his life. In many respects, this week’s epic escape tale of Wang Lijun, the right-hand policeman of Chongqing Party Secretary Bo Xilai, had the exact same plot as The Chase, except for the part about a crime, a woman, Mexico and Charlie Sheen. The Chongqing government announced last week that Wang’s duties had changed from security to economic issues, a move that some initially thought to be a promotion. But when his responsibilities were clarified as including education, gardening and figuring out how to make the toilets more water-efficient, rumors started flying that Bo Xilai’s former pal might in fact have been demoted – potentially boding ill for Bo’s lofty ambitions. Furious Weibo tweeting has it that Wang pilfered documents suggesting Bo is corrupt and absconded to the US consulate in Chengdu, playing the three-minute, 52-second song “Bad Boys” on repeat for the entire nine-hour drive. According to the government, Wang is now on “vacation-style therapy”; a British tourist in Thailand reportedly saw Dr Phil lecturing Wang to “get real” while receiving a massage on the beach, so there might be some truth to that. Wang wasn’t the only bad boy in the news this week: A federal grand jury in the US accused a middle-aged couple of trying to steal titanium dioxide manufacturing secrets for Chinese companies, on grounds that an espionage case so dull could only have been dreamed up by a Chinese state-owned company.
Also crying out for vacation-style therapy this week was US Vice President Joe Biden, who warned at an event in Florida that China’s growth would inevitably slow due to the country’s “God-awful” one-child policy. “When you talk about, we have a problem with our entitlement programs, we are going to be able to handle that, but by God, thank God we don’t have your problem,” Biden said, shortly after ingesting a heavy-duty antibiotic and four cocktails. He lifted his fork in the air and stabbed in the general direction of China. “I really want to see China continue to grow. Don’t let the fact that we are two-and-a-half times as large as your economy in any way dissuade you from continuing to work hard.” In a move meant to inspire confidence in the administration’s foreign policy initiatives, Biden then added, “I’ve been sort of given part of the China portfolio here.” “Baseball. Hot dogs,” he was later heard to mutter as he drooled into the table cloth. Media outlets reported that Biden was trying to make the case that the US remains the world’s largest economy and that it is populated by a-holes. Stephen Harper took the opportunity to urge China to approve pending Canadian investments, though he couldn’t stop giggling nervously. “We have, I think, a pretty open regime when it comes to Chinese investment in Canada,” Harper chuckled, sidling away from the collapsed Biden. “And we don’t know that guy.”