Consider that both processes, different as they are, are at their essence both completely legitimate and shot to pieces by too much money. Both were designed carefully to reflect the respective cultural consensus about how rulers are chosen, and neither is really working out as planned. Consider that results, not form, may be the true criteria of whether a political system is “working” or “broken.”
My take –institutional inertia and massive implementation issues always exist, but not so much that the intent and philosophy of who governs doesn’t matter. I believe that in both the USA and China, most people want to have an open opportunity structure instead of oligarchy; geopolitical stability rather than ideological warfare; environmental sustainability rather than long term pollution in service of short term employment.
Picking nine men from a field of 23 means a more complex playing field, more shifting agendas, more overt opacity than Pick One Guy To Be Boss. Despite what most Americans might see as a system of “tyranny”, Chinese public outcry and activism has, just this year, stopped toxic factory expansions, brought down corrupt officials, and shut down dangerous trains. In America, if we can’t pick the one guy more likely to side with the rights of individuals over those of corporations, support public education, respond to climate change in some mode besides denial, and act with restraint in the geopolitical arena, what does that say about our system? And us?
On Thursday November 1 the China Weekly Hangout will focus on eight years of harmonious society under Hu Jintao and what we can expect the next eight years under Xi Jinping. Including Janet Carmosky who will report on the findings during the National Committee on US-China Relations China Town Hall on Monday. The CWH is held on 10pm Beijing time, 3pm CET (Europe) and 10pm EST (US). More on the logistics of the hangout later this week at the China Herald or our event page at Google+.
- Shanghai uses changed policies for foreign investments – Mark Schaub (chinaspeakersbureau.info)
- Are we ready for Chinese tourists? – Roy Graff (chinaherald.net)
- Why are Chinese leaving China? – China Weekly Hangout (chinaherald.net)