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  •  As for another massacre (0+ / 0-)

    China has developed a variety of means, some of them laudable and others execrable to forestall another Tienanmen.  The workers' demonstrations of the time were repressed much more harshly than the student demonstrations.

    These days, it's not uncommon for demonstrations and controlled disorder to break out over real grievances;  the local government will permit some rock-throwing, parading and yelling, the appropriate level of government comes up with a response and the media follows it all.  The government wins, the grievance is met and everybody's happy until the next round.

    That almost every citizen of China can claim an improved standard of living (more space, better food, better education) also serves to stave off discontent.  If the Obama Presidency ended with the stock market at 22,000 in 2017, an involuntary unemployment rate near zero, real wages up 50% and gold-plated national health care for all, he would be revered.  It is not surprising that the Chinese government enjoys uncoerced support;  just that it tends to coerce support from the uncontent that we Americans prefer to ignore.

    One "perfect dictatorship" aspect of the CCP is its willingness to punish officials for misconduct with penalties up to and including death.  This is unusual in authoritarian (and democratic!) systems.  

    So, another Tienanmen is unlikely, unless ethnic unrest driven by chauvinism by Han, Tibetan or Uighur breaks out in Tibet or Xinjiang.  

    2009: Year of the Donkey. Let's not screw it up.

    by Yamaneko2 on Sat Nov 21, 2009 at 10:37:48 PM PST

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    •  Back from dinner! (0+ / 0-)

      Chinese have the Constitutional right to free expression and assembly, and excerise those rights with great regularity, approximately 40,000-50,000 times a year by offical count.

      It's a good policy. If you follow Chinese legal and economic reforms closely, one obvious conclusion would be it's effective since these reforms correlate well to the root issues at stake, such as rural economic and land use rights, corruption in local government, environmental issues, etc.

      These days, it's not uncommon for demonstrations and controlled disorder to break out over real grievances;  the local government will permit some rock-throwing, parading and yelling, the appropriate level of government comes up with a response and the media follows it all.  The government wins, the grievance is met and everybody's happy until the next round.

      You are out-dated on legal and economic reforms, and the fundametal policy objectives undelying "Harmonious Society", a complex political initiative.

      In fact, protestors are increasingly being drawn into the system in productive, leadership roles. Surprisingly, many dissidents are well-versed on issues and have organizational skills, no? (;-O>|-<</p>

      It is not surprising that the Chinese government enjoys uncoerced support;  just that it tends to coerce support from the uncontent that we Americans prefer to ignore.

      If responding to discontent is bad and ignoring it is good then you've got me; I'll admidt I believe the oppposite.

      Let me support your arguement: not 10 years ago environmental activits such as I faced all manner of official disdain and strife; of late, we have been reborn as "Environmental Patriots" and given free-reign to pressure recaltrant local officials on the failure to do what is right and required by law. Strange Bedfellows are we, but if I can get progress I'll take it.

      I find the Western media and many Western observers have a perversely novel take on this. On one hand they pontificate on the monolithic power of the state; on the other, spin tales of a "regime" (the opportunity to use that pejorative term is seldom wasted) running scared, clinging to power as it struggles for "legitimacy", bouncing from massacre to massacre crisis to crisis chased by farmers. OK, got it.

      One "perfect dictatorship" aspect of the CCP is its willingness to punish officials for misconduct with penalties up to and including death.  This is unusual in authoritarian (and democratic!) systems.

      This is so Chinese. We have been chasing crooks and landlords for at least 5,000 years. Apperently we are not quick enough, some of those buggers always get away. With apologigies to non-Chinese dictators, oliarchs, whatever - sorry to give you a bad name.

      Ever notice how money attracts some government officials?  You see, even if we speak different languages and drink tea verses coffee, people are people ...

      Tienanmen is quite different for Chinese and the ROW. I find most non-Chinese actually quite limited in knowledge and perspective on this, they don't know why millions of people came out for weeks, what the students were protesting before the TV cameras turned on, and where it fits in the general scheme of things. What they know is what they saw on CNN and what they think about it, and think about it they do since they missed 1,000 Flowers, The Cultural Revolution and, oh, 200 years or so of chaos and famine that preceeded it. Difficult to explain unless someone wants to study a lot of history.

      To be sure, this is unfinished historical business we will get to in due course, but that we moved on has nothing to do with deals with the devil and everything to do with our desire for as better life in all respects. Perhaps it's a defect of Chinese character that we tend more toward a bird in the hand than navel gazing and have not been totally cured of our traditional belief that movement brings change (not the case when one foot is nailed to the floor) but our modus operandi is to internalize such things, swollow our grief and keep walking.

      The Chinese term for tomorrow, míng​tiān (明天), means bright/clear sky/heavens.  Crazy?  Poetic, perhaps.

      Ask me about my daughter's future - Ko

      by koNko on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 06:43:08 AM PST

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