Gaybutton wrote:I would like you to explain what part(s) of his last post he is wrong about.
Please, it is not just about his last post. It is the general view that he continuously advocates re China. It does not matter how positions/arguments are countered, they remain fixed. Now I have no problem with that. Mine are also pretty much fixed based on decades of experience. We are each entitled to our views and to express them subject to the rules of this Board. But I'd have thought that a continuing repetition of "this is correct/no that is incorrect" is not in readers' best interests. Best just to note each position and leave it at that.
Gaybutton wrote:That wouldn't have anything to do with your pro-China point of view, would it?
I'm certain it does. I am not wholly pro-China but I have an enormous admiration for what that country has done in the 40 or so years since the end of the Cultural Revolution. We tend to forget that China was raped by several major powers including the UK and the USA in the 19th century as the Imperial system rotted from within. When the absolute-rule millennia-old Imperial system died, it was then quickly replaced by warlord factions followed quickly by Japanese invasion, outright war, civil war and then Mao's tyranny. So as another poster on another Board accurately stated not so long ago, China is to all intents and purposes a country that is all of 40 years old. How it has been held together, how it has dragged 400 million+ out of poverty - by far the largest number in the shortest period of time in world history - how it has developed (admittedly with help from other countries) in that millisecond of history is nothing short of a miracle.
So I object to this comment -
firecat69 wrote:the vast majority of their population is still dirt poor and likely will remain that way for many many years
To be frank that is a nonsense! At his recent election, President Xi vowed to eliminate poverty by 2020. Compare that with the United States. How many millions/tens of millions live below the poverty line? Or the UK or many other countries? How many of those are destined to remain that way for the rest of their lives?
Another issue is the communism one.
firecat69 wrote:They are Communists and act only for the good of a very tiny % of the population , in order to hold on to their power. They have not really advanced from Tiananmen Square Massacre but have been good at putting lipstick on a pig.
Take a sampling of Chinese from both cities and countryside and ask them if they believe that statement is true. Unquestionably the vast majority of answers will be "no". Of course that is based on my experience and my interpretation, but I have never met a Chinese who is a communist or who believes in communism - apart perhaps from one government Minister and a senior civil servant I met in Beijing. Certainly the sister-in-law of a Vice Premier whom I got to know was no communist! Even Mao broke with the Marxism/Leninism of the old Soviet Union. Perhaps Lee Kwan Yew said it best in reference to the difference in democratic values between East and West - he called it "democracy with Asian characteristics." It so happens he made that statement before the Asian Economic crisis exposed the crony capitalism that existed in Asia. But it is equally true that no country in Asia, apart from perhaps Taiwan and the former US colony The Philippines, practises a western version of democracy. All others to a greater or lesser extent are dictatorships that happen to have sham elections.
So China having a one party state is not unusual. In its post-colonial history, both Singapore and Malaysia have only ever had one ruling party which do everything in their power to ensure the situation will not change - including the use of the courts to protect their interests. Japan is almost the same, with the exception of two short periods totalling less than 5 years since the ruling LDP was formed.
I was in Guangzhou in 1980. I have been dozens of times in Beijing and Shanghai and in several other cities and parts of the countryside as China has developed in the most rapid and amazing manner. We should not forget that it was not trade that started the creation of the new China. As Ezra Vogel's biography of Deng Xiao-ping* makes clear, at the end of the 1970s China exported as much in one year as it now exports in a day. Wily Deng realised he would never get cash from western banks. So he went to the Chinese diaspora, the billionaires in Hong Kong and elsewhere and persuaded them to invest in his vision. They started the infusion of capital that would eventually become a flood with western and other companies desperate to get a piece of the Chinese pie. And with a vast and rapidly developing middle class, that domestic pie is going to become very big indeed.
* Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China
, by Ezra Vogel, Harvard University Press