firecat69 wrote:FH. Your ability to pull out articles from 1-70 years ago to support your arguments is amazing.
Oh! Come now, firecat69! Whenever have I posted an article that is more than a few years old? Granted that SCMP article is 7 years old but it was offering facts which had hitherto been either unknown or mere speculation. You could have planted yourself back in 1969 if you had the ability to travel back in time. If you had, you would have been utterly clueless about what is in that article - other than that there were serious tensions on the Sino-Soviet border.
Those who say China is now a communist state really have little clue about communism. It was an economic and social system devised by Marx and put into effect by Lenin and his cronies. It called for virtually all property and resources to be owned by the state and not by individuals. It called for common ownership of all land and capital . . . and so on. Present day China is almost the exact opposite of communist! The primary difference between China and the west is that China is ruled by a group of unelected leaders. And yes, the massive development of the county has resulted in conditions for some people which those in the west would not certainly accept nowadays, at least not without some form of referendum or public debate. But those of us brought up in the west often forget how western countries became rich. We conveniently forget the slaughter of Native Americans, the treatment of slaves and even African Americans not so many decades ago. We forget about Britain being perfectly happy for children as young as 8 to work in the mines for 12 hours each day 7 days a week to enrich the growing merchant class. We forget about its forcing millions of Chinese into a ghastly death through its insistence on paying for its imports with opium instead of silver. We now turn a blind eye to the disgrace of Belgian colonialism in the Congo or the Dutch in Indonesia . . . And how long did it take western countries to get away from rule by oligarchs, those born rich or rich landowners, and implement full democratic rights to all citizens? Many hundreds of years.
Present-day China basically began barely 40 years ago. Prior to that time the country had undergone almost 200 years of utter chaos. And before then it had been an absolute dictatorship for millennia. If you want China to change its system of leadership, you have to persuade the majority of its people that that is what they want. And if you talk to almost any Chinese, many are proud of the fact that, whatever its problems, the unelected Deng Xiao-ping and his team brought 400 million plus of its citizens out of extreme poverty, by far the largest number of people in the shortest possible time in world history, and in the process became the world's second largest economy. How the hell do you go about persuading them that another system can keep the country developing? It's all very well to criticise. But what do you put in its place in a country with 1.4 billion people? And before you answer that one, remember its history, remember what is ingrained in people's minds, remember that there are about 57 different ethnic groupings and that without central control, it is almost certain that the country would have started to break up in the early 1990s.
If you don't want China as it is, what do you want to put in its place? Do you want it to evolve as Russia has from the Soviet Union - i.e. a dictatorship? Do you not agree that Singapore is an old-style oligarchy where democracy counts for little and what the oligarchy wants, the oligarchy gets? How about Japan? Is that democracy? Not in my book - because once again you have to look at the history and the culture and realise that for a large swathe of present day Japanese democracy remains a rather strange unwelcome concept.