SEATTLE-- China is a nation built on tradition -- whether it's in Beijing or on the streets of Seattle's International District.

It's the core value of China. Everything kinda of goes around it, said Jocelyn Chui, whose family still lives in China.

Unlikethe scandal ridden politics ofAmerica,the notion of aChinese politician posing for risque' pictures that endupposted on the Internet is unheard of. Enter the photo of U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke snapped at a Sea-Tac Airport Starbucks.

The picture, taken by a Chinese blogger, has been reposted and tweeted more than 40,000 times. It shows Locke, daughter in tow, buying his own cup of coffee andtoting his own carry-on bag.

It's something that's laughable in China,where ritual andstatusareeverything to the politicalelite. Local Chinese say politicians travel with entourages, bodyguards and servants -- not their young children.

He should have a decent entourage instead of family vacation shots, Dennis Su of Seattle said with a laugh.

But what makes the single picture so powerful is that in China you're not allowed to criticize politicians in public.A tweet, however,can speak volumes without saying a single word.

Seattle Chinese journalist Assunta Ng says the widespread popularity of the picture is sending a loud message.

They're telling their own officials, please, learn something. Be frugal. Ritual is not important sometimes. This is the kind of leader we want.

Locke was also praised by Chinese bloggers for attempting to use a couponat Starbucks. He was refused by the barista and forced to use a debit card.

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