GOOD MORNING FROM LONDON 10 AUGUST 2021
China’s surge of growth, development + prosperity is remarkable. Recall the devastation, hopelessness + poverty of 1949 after the Three Civil Wars between the Party + the KMT and the Anti-Japanese War to expel Japan from China.
Rarely is China given the credit for its achievement? Its people enjoy a lifestyle beyond their imagination in 1949. Today China is prosperous, confident + happy. The irony for China’s critics is that such progress would never have come about if on 1 October 1949 Mao Tsetung had declared that China would hold national elections within three months in which all political parties would have been represented.
Instability would have reigned supreme as parties vied with each other to control China’s destiny with national elections every five years. Separatism would have taken control as Western powers, upset at their expulsion from China, would have competed with each other for control of different parts of China.
China needed stability to achieve its goals of raising living standards. Some things went wrong as China experimented with different forms of economic/political development but since 1980 China has experienced a surge of achievement which has forced the West to re-write its teaching manuals on The Way Forward For Developing Countries. To the West’s disappointment, the people of China enthusiastically support the Party. Remember the Jeremy Paxman Interview of 2012. “But you can’t vote your government out of power” – he asked the 4 female business executives. “But why would we want to” – came the reply.
So there is achievement + contentment and at the same time, the Party is in control. For the West, this is an inexplicable phenomenon. Does Progress come from Freedom, not from One Party Rule? Or does it?
Part 3 11 August 2021