GOOD MORNING FROM LONDON
Western critics of China recognise the challenge presented to world politics by the manner in which China has turned itself from the Sick Man of Asia in 1949 into the Second Largest Economy in the World in 2022. As this column has said in the 360 previous Good Morning From London posts, the West does not like to accept the turnaround in the fortunes of China because of what it means for the evolution of world history + the ascendancy of a country headed by a Communist Party.
A Communist Party is not meant to deliver prosperity, a rise in living standards and an increase in the happiness of the daily lives of its people. So the allegations are regularly repeated – China is genocidal; China is expansionist; China oppresses its own people; China is not to be trusted.
In particular, China’s critics will argue that Xi Jinping’s determination to root out corruption is merely a cover to eliminate political rivals. Corruption, his critics claim, will remain whilst allegations of corruption will be used to remove rivals (such as former Trade Minister Bo Xilai) from mounting a challenge against Xi.
It is useful to refer to Xi Jinping’s early writings published shortly after he was appointed President. He made it clear that the people (the masses) would turn against the Party if the members of the Party were able to use their positions for private advantage. The purpose of membership of the Party was to serve the people + not to look after themselves. Corruption could not be tolerated.
The campaign to make the Party clean continues daily and reports of instances of corruption appear regularly in the media. It is doubtful if there will be any let-up in the anti-corruption campaign. China, it contends, does not need a free tabloid press for this purpose. And anyone who has raised this issue with Chinese hosts will be left in no doubt that fighting corruption remains a top priority.
In future Posts, I will look at, first, the meaning of the “Disorderly Expansion of Capitaism” and, second, the reluctance of Western observers to accept China’s very low number of reported Covid deaths.
NEXT POST – 24 FEBRUARY 2022