All business ahead of Party festivities

North Korea’s lower-ranking Party cadres
and donju [new affluent middle class] have been paying bribes to cadres in the
higher ranks or putting together cultural performances to secure deals for new
business projects ahead of the country’s 70th Party Foundation Day anniversary,
Daily NK has learned. 

“The choir and art performances that are
being put on in light of the Party Foundation Day are not actually run by the
state but donju,” a source in South Pyongan Province told Daily NK on Tuesday.
“Donju want to win over the hearts of high-level cadres and pave the way to
carry out business projects, so they’re voluntarily offering to provide
material support for the Party anniversary festivities.”

A source in North Pyongan Province corroborated this news.

Some donju immediately send supplies to
work units upon hearing cadres remark on the group’s outstanding production
work, and more people are sending pigs for the military parade participants to
consume; the number of pigs being sent in sometimes even tops 30, according to
the source. 

There have even been lower-ranking cadres dispatching orchestras to
state-run factories to boost morale and win over the management.

“Now people just voluntarily do these
things before the state orders them to,” the source said. “This is by no means
loyalty that they’re showing. They’re just securing the necessary foundation to
make more money and become successful,” he said.

“Now when Party cadres learn of some
celebration taking place through broadcasts or newspaper articles, they believe
that the managers in charge there have secured a future for themselves.” 

He added, “Given that the situation’s gotten to this point, we can’t expect to see any form of actual loyalty.’” 

The same goes for participating
artists, who focus the most on winning over attention. This, the source asserted, reflects a
mentality wherein people try to “figure out what Kim Jong Un wants” to secure a “shortcut for making money–not
as a means to express their loyalty.”