Chinese Political Issues in the News

Most recent news cites a potential espionage issue for the US and China. And what about the escape of the blind activist Chen Guangcheng to the US embassy and eventual move to the US? Even the downfall story of Chinese Communist party rising star Bo Xilia has made news here in the US. To learn more, we asked Zintro experts what can we learn about the Chinese political environment, Communist government rule, human rights, and how the Chinese are dealing with these public challenges.

Todd McMyn, an expert in international trade, says that there is no way one can singularly judge a country of over one billion people, with hundreds of languages, dialects and local cultures, and a vast manufacturing and international global trade network. “It is important to understand the Chinese mindset when analyzing its policies, customs, and politics. China politically remains an insular country,” says McMyn. “I would point out its mandates are not at all based on western ideals of law and order but on a Chinese psychological view that incorporates traditional Socialism, Confucian, Taoist and Buddhist thought. It incorporates ideas of harmony, obedience and even traces of the mandate of heaven doctrine as it relates to the individuals duty and relationship to government and economy. China’s aspiration for market economy and pledge to democracy make the development of civil society a necessity for China although it could and does face some setbacks from time to time.”

McMyn says that the Chinese Communist party rising star Bo Xilia and the blind activist Chen Guangcheng both represent opposite spectrums of Chinese society: one is trying to call for greater human rights; the other it appears abused his power at the expense of others. “It is rather symbolic of the Chinese zeitgeist that these two cases have been raised to international attention. As China continues to enter the interconnected global markets and the accompanying geo-political expectations for standardized production quality, human rights is a critical issue,” he says. “As more Chinese travel and become familiar with other societies, methods of governance and integrations will occur. Calls for open transparent government will increase.”

The issue, notes McMyn, is will the Chinese government see the ideals and need for Western democratic freedom necessary and effective within the backdrop of its responsibility of feeding and managing one billion people. “For China, which has gone thorough numerous conflicts, occupations, and civil wars, harmony and societal control and cohesion remain above individuals needs. The other issue is will the general population see the ruling party’s need for control in harmony and in balance with its own sense of justice as it relates to the corruption of officials and unilateral acts by the government. The ruling party’s greatest task is to prove to its people that its leadership doesn’t abuse its power and that corruption and abuse are dealt firmly within a rational and fair legal framework.”

James Liu, a CEO in China, says that it looks like a power struggle among various powers: Central League, Tai-zi Dang, and Jiangzemin. “The Central League has made great efforts to get rid of the old ghost of the diehard leftists,” Liu says. “Cheng Guangcheng had to go because June 4th was the Tiananmen Square anniversary. Beijing really doesn’t need the extra attention. And, ordinary Chinese people couldn’t care less about these issues since they are inflammatory.”

By Maureen Aylward

Zintro, Inc

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