Values in China today are only carried forward by the culture largely as a result of the destruction of ethical and civic standards wrought by Mao during the Cultural Revolution. In other words, in my experience, there is generally no honor given in China today for verbal or written contracts and the visitor will find him or herself at the mercy of Chinese pragmatism.
In China today portraits of Mao are everywhere and due to the controlled press few Chinese know the truth of their own modern history. And I am horrified when I hear “Maoism” being bandied about…even here in Oaxaca Mexico!
To understand how this came about, to understand the ability of the Chinese to dupe Westerners and to understand the anger of the Chinese community in Alhambra over the hanging of Warhol-like images of Mao you can read the 1995 “Mao: The Unknown Story,” an 832-page biography of Mao written by the husband and wife team of historians, Jon Halliday and Jung Chang who herself was a Red Guard during the Revolution. It depicts Mao Zedong, the former paramount leader of China and Chairman of the Communist Party of China, as being responsible for mass murder (upwards of 30-70 million people) on a scale greater than that committed under the rule of Adolf Hitler or Joseph Stalin.