The peculiar persistence of Chinese communism

China is not about to collapse, democracy is not arriving in the forseeable future, censorship will continue, the CCP isn’t going away and it may still be in power generations from now.

Read this detailed and relatively balanced picture of why this is so. This may baffle and/or displease some of us, but it is reality so we had better get used to it and adapt to it as best we can. That doesn’t mean to kowtow before it and accept all it does with resignation and a sense of inevitability. But we do have to keep a clear head about how Chinese people view their government, and about how the circumstances that actually could lead to an overthrow of some sort simply aren’t there, at least not yet. You can point to the thousands of demonstrations, the ethnic unrest, the massive problems it faces, the environment, and those are all valid issues. But we are nowhere near a tipping point, and may never be. If you are sitting back and waiting for the coming collapse of China, it may be a very long and lonely wait.

Update: See CN Review’s post on the same article. Kai identifies the story’s weakest link, the author’s incredibly misguided suggestion that the US might consider actively helping Chinese people subvert the GFW.

Also, be sure to see this piece on China’s censorship of domestic social media sites, and the West’s misconceptions about the prevalence of Twitter here. This is a good example of Americans seeing China only through the American prism, getting outraged about the blocking of Twitter, never realizing Twitter’s role in China’s social media scene is next to zero. Excellent commentary by Kaiser Kuo.


Richard Burger is the author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, an exploration of China's sexual revolution and its clash with traditional Chinese values.

The Discussion: 52 Comments

To Vikings, Romans, Monarchs, the Church, and now your Corporations. Some form of slavery, underpinned by delusion, was generally the British way of life for all of recorded history.

I suspect that you won’t understand any of this though, so enjoy paying off debts with essential wage slavery for the rest of your life.

December 3, 2009 @ 9:20 am | Comment

[…] an inherent weakness and lack of confidence, despite the party’s strength and staying power, which I’ve also written about at length recently. Baked by Richard @ 10:58 am, Filed under: Censorship, […]

December 8, 2009 @ 11:03 am | Pingback

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