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Hacked By AdGhosT

Hacked By AdGhosT & Tayeb TN & bo hmid

 

 

 

 

 

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The Great Democracy Debate » The Peking Duck

The Great Democracy Debate

How many times have we discussed whether China would be better off with some form of democracy as opposed to its one-party authoritarian system? I know, too many times. But this article on the recent debate between CCP apologist and shill Eric Li and professor of government Minxin Pei is well worth reading. If you don’t believe me about Li being a shill, or if you are unfamiliar with him, read this. This is one of my favorite of Li’s assertions:

China is on a different path. Its leaders are prepared to allow greater popular participation in political decisions if and when it is conducive to economic development and favorable to the country’s national interests, as they have done in the past 10 years.

However, China’s leaders would not hesitate to curtail those freedoms if the conditions and the needs of the nation changed. The 1980s were a time of expanding popular participation in the country’s politics that helped loosen the ideological shackles of the destructive Cultural Revolution. But it went too far and led to a vast rebellion at Tiananmen Square.

That uprising was decisively put down on June 4, 1989. The Chinese nation paid a heavy price for that violent event, but the alternatives would have been far worse.

The resulting stability ushered in a generation of growth and prosperity that propelled China’s economy to its position as the second largest in the world.

For a marvelous take-down of this drivel go here. As if all of China’s great progress rests firmly on the shoulders of the Tiananmen Square massacre.

Anyway, sorry for that digression, but you have to know who Li is to appreciate this debate.

I’ve always been careful to say I don’t believe Western-style democracy would necessarily be the answer to China’s problems of corruption, human rights violations, and the injustices inherent to any one-party system that operates without the checks of rule of law. Pei makes a strong argument, however, that the huge political and economic challenges China is facing are weakening the government and will ultimately result in an “unraveling” of the one-party system. So China should have a democratic infrastructure in place if the party implodes. In a nutshell:

The economy has been driven primarily by investments at home and exports to developed countries, which isn’t sustainable. In the political sphere, we’re seeing manifestations of a fundamental vulnerability of one-party systems globally: a tendency to drift into benefiting a relatively small, and ultimately predatory, elite at the expense of society generally, and the associated phenomena of high-level corruption and inequality.

Together, Pei claimed, these two domains of contradiction tend to impede the growth of China’s economy and undermine the legitimacy of its government. You can see the last two decades as a story of the rise of the Chinese system, Pei said; but the next 10 to 15 years (no less than 10, no more than 15) will be one of the system’s unraveling. And this is what the United States and the West generally need to worry about — not China’s strength but its weakness, because when the transition to a more democratic system comes, it will be very difficult to manage, particularly given the country’s deep ethnic divisions, its disputed borders, and its complex integration with the global economy.

Li’s arguments are familiar: all of China’s mistakes have been dwarfed by its accomplishments, the party has put China on a long trajectory of growth and it would be insane to shift gears when the current system is working, Western democracies are thrown into chaos by politics and therefore can’t get things done, etc. Pei argues that by clinging to an unrepresentative system of government, China may be on a path to collapse should the economy falter dramatically, and having no other alternative to the CCP political bedlam could ensue. A comparison to the collapse of the Soviet Union is not inconceivable.

Li showed his true stripes several times, and he was proud of them. This was one of my favorites:

In response to a question from the audience, Li also criticized the very ideas of political liberty and individual rights. Unless you think rights come from God, he insisted, you really have no theory of why any one view of political liberty any discrete set of individual rights should be sacrosanct at all. “If they’re from men, they’re not absolute; they can be negotiated.” It was only too bad there wasn’t time to discuss what “negotiated” means here.

“I want to break the spell of the so-called right to freedom of speech,” he added later. “Speech is act. It has harmed from time immemorial.”

It’s too bad he sounds like such an apologist. Some of his arguments are fair. We all know how well China has done compared to 30 years ago. I believe the CCP has to be given a lot of credit for improving the quality of the lives of so many of its citizens, and wonder whether its people are ready for pluralism. But who gets to decide that? And if the people so adore the CCP, why do Li and other shills so strongly oppose free elections? And if the government is so confident in China’s future, why are so many party elites moving their assets out of China? Li got kind of tongue-tied over that one.

Anyway, read the whole thing. Nothing new, exactly, but thought provoking. And you really are left wondering what the answer is. Neither Pei’s nor Li’s answers are totally convincing and it’s hard for me to say who “won.”

______________

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: 92 Comments

#48 would be a great (ok, more like middling) argument that China shouldn’t strive to be just like the US of A. Has anyone stated/suggested/implied/intimated/opined that China should become just like the US of A? If not, then why do so many of a certain type of folk so often choose to argue against something that no one has proposed?

July 8, 2012 @ 12:44 am | Comment

@ SK

#48 would be a great (ok, more like middling) argument that China shouldn’t strive to be just like the US of A. Has anyone stated/suggested/implied/intimated/opined that China should become just like the US of A? If not, then why do so many of a certain type of folk so often choose to argue against something that no one has proposed?

Jack’s just lazily copying/pasting comments here–that’s why it seems irrelevant.

Jing is just your typical eugenics cross-burner. The only thing unusual about him in that regard is that he is likely not blond-hair/blue-eyed.
Clock actually makes some sense in #36/37. While it is a bit much to expect dissidents within CHina to come up with a plan and broadcast it while under the thumb of the CCP, it is reasonable to expect same from those who have left the CCP’s grasp. Of course that opens up the potential FQ criticism of foreigners telling Chinese people what to do, but presumably Clock will overlook that aspect lest he be talking out of both sides of his mouth. The only part where Clock gets tripped up here is that the task is not to convince him. I mean, who cares about him, he doesn’t even live in China. The task would be to offer a compelling alternative that passes muster with Chinese people in China.

Jing’s views are pretty much a rehash of National Socialism. What’s important though is to realize that these views do exist in Chinese society and need to be addressed if China is to make the leap to popular representation rather than sliding into populist demagogery.

As for the task of convincing the people in China, I think the better thing is to actually start by writing something a bit more specific than Charter 08. The issue with Charter 08 is that it offers no carrot out to any part of the Chinese state to actually work with it. Instead, activists would probably do much better to start by advocating smaller chunks of reform at a time:

For example,
1. Loosening the Party Organization department’s grip on newly privatized SOEs
2. Pushing for local elections to automatically trigger if a city/county government has a history of fiscal mismanagement/deficits/violates Party Center directives/is publicly exposed as a “rotten borough”
3. Pushing for increased provincial rotation amongst judiciary and public security personnel, to reduce the likelihood of long-term corrupt relationships forming within a particular area

etc. etc.

@ JR

I would recommend that China bloggers – me included – should care more frequently about what the small share of the Chinese public who aren’t quite within the CCP’s control actually do. Obviously, the share of them is so small that they are often – and conveniently – referred to as “too irrelevant” to care. When they are abroad, rather than in China, that’s a handy explanation to justify why nobody cares, and when they are in jail (i. e. “at home”), you can’t expect a real discussion either.
Whenever Zhou Yongkang farts, Associated Press or the Times will be there with a microphone. If the Chinese opposition got just one tenth of the publicity the CCP does, we may actually see politics at work there. Wang Lixiong (王力雄), for starters, ought to be heard and discussed much more frequently – that could be a truly great debate. But then, we’ll probably soon hear foreign reporters criticizing themselves, once those who have talked to them (or to RFA, or what have you, have been arrested, too.
One more thing: forget Eric Li. He may be a great businessman, but he has no idea about politics – he only knows how to make politics useful to himself, and how to make himself useful to politics.

There are a lot of good people putting out viewpoints now. Wang Lixiong is good, Andy Xie is better (although both are prone to histrionics/hysterics.) Michael Pettis is very very good. As for overcoverage of Chinese leaders, I don’t think that’s actually the case–compared to Western politicians, Chinese politicians are actually undercovered by the international media–which I think is partly intentional from the Chinese side (a lot of other CCP officials found Bo Xilai’s preening to Western journalists fairly offensive, for example.)

It’s frequently the same people who defend the CCP, or suggest in other ways that its rule were essential; and who, on the other hand, deplore the unprepared state of society in Russia and its former colonies when the CPSU faltered. You can’t have it both ways. If you subscribe to the defense of the CCP’s role, you will have to go through thick and thin with the dictators, you will have to bet on their success in “re-writing China’s software” (i. e. the individual mind), and obviously, you will never have a society really prepared for its own freedom.

Actually, that assumes that the only exit out of a status quo CCP role is the Gorbachev solution. But when one examines South Korea’s break from the DRP, Japan’s change from the LDP, Singapore’s relationship with its ruling coaltion, Taiwan and KMT; etc it becomes quite easy to see that a different sort of transition is possible, that does not result in either the dissolution of the Party nor political upheaval.

July 8, 2012 @ 9:41 am | Comment

The tang, like her roman and Greek counterparts was founded by one ethnos. It’s glory and might was what attracted the parasites and barbarians. Not the other way around as the modern multiculturalist insists.

I’ll grant that the essential genius of the great world civilizations mostly came from one “ethnos”, in the sense that it came from a particular way of looking at the world – ie the product of a particular culture. Multiculturalism as we understand it would have had very little to do with it. IMO multiculturalism means well but it is intellectually bankrupt. It sees culture as a smorgasbord of experiences, colourful clothes and exotic food. Advocates of multiculturalism love those experiences but in terms of real culture, theirs is very particular and specific and is mostly shared only by a subset of white people. It also tends to be narrow and legalistic. That’s my opinion anyway.

This doesn’t change the fact that the appeal of the great civilizations was precisely because they had something to offer to the whole world, not some ethnic subset. That is what they were justly proud of.

You are sadly mistaken if you think I care one iota about attracting the attention or praise of any other race.

Well, it would be even sadder if you did care that much about those things. If something is praiseworthy or worth noticing, that will happen without you needing to do anything.

By the way you should capitalise Tang and Roman, unless you are subconsciously belittling them?

The problem with the notion of a “civilization-state”, which really is simply another term for empire.

Handler gets it. Empire is a dirty word today, but IMO nationalisms are worse. More blood is spilt by nationalists, and states founded on nationalism tend towards totalitarianism, because unlike empires which only demand that you pay your taxes and don’t rebel, nation states demand your heart and soul. Hence they make you learn the poetry and writing of people alien to you, and try to shoehorn you into their mode of being. I can’t speak from experience, but I think it might be more tolerable to be a minority in China in certain areas if China just accepted that it is an empire and didn’t try to be a nation-state.

At least intelligent Chinese should leave it to others to denounce imperialism, because if there was no imperialism in the world there would be no China.

July 8, 2012 @ 10:18 am | Comment

Ladies and gentlemen,I am Jack here,AKA Dreamer-Sg
Yes,I did make exactly the same comment in Economist under “Chen, China and America”
Sorry if I have created misunderstanding.
May I add that I also believe that Obama will be re-elected and lead USA to the Golden Age and the shall be the global leader.

July 8, 2012 @ 10:51 am | Comment

I accept the point by (51)SK Cheung that my points may be irrelevant here.
The reason why I put them up is because whenever the issue of “democracy in China” is being discussed by Chinese intellectuals,they would invariably bring up the example of USA to justify why Democracy would not work in China,as reflected by many comments in FT Chinese edition.
http://www.ftchinese.com/

July 8, 2012 @ 11:48 am | Comment

t_co:

Wang Lixiong is good, Andy Xie is better (although both are prone to histrionics/hysterics), you wrote in #52.
Prone to histrionics/hysterics? Can you explain a bit further?

You also suggest in the same comment that what I wrote before suggests that there needed to be a Gorbachev. That surprises me – nothing in what you quoted from me suggests that, t_co. It might as well be a number of people of Chiang Ching-kuo’s kind. The only problem: they are unlikely to emerge within the CCP. The CCP’s ambitions are quite different from Chiang jrs.

Ai Ping, vice-director of the party’s international department, was quoted as saying last year that the key to having a good knowledge about China lies in a better knowledge of the Communist Party. I agree, though arguably for reasons different from his.

I suggest that people who discard Ai Ping’s suggestion as more or less irrelevant for daily life in China should try to study the party anyway – the central committee’s “cultural decision” may be a good start. It’s pretty ambitious, and it affects many aspects of daily life in China.

When you do a google search with this combination – “Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party Decision Concerning Deepening Cultural Structural Reform” -, you’ll find a series of translations on my blog, and a translation in one go on China Copyright and Media.

In these terms, I agree that there is too little coverage both on the CCP and on the public outside its control. What I do not agree with is that the CCP gets little attention. Zhou Yongkang‘s alleged fall from power has been a hot topic for months, without much substance. Party decisions that might affect business usually become hot topics, too. And you will hardly find a copy of the Economist these days that doesn’t quote party officials or papers operated by the party.

July 8, 2012 @ 1:13 pm | Comment

Richard
And if the people so adore the CCP, why do Li and other shills so strongly oppose free elections?

I would laugh if the Chinese electorate voted for an actual hardline, xenophobic, militaristic government.

July 9, 2012 @ 12:58 am | Comment

Gil
All the Central and Eastern European countries states for which the OECD reports statistics (Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, Estonia, Turkey) have Gini income coefficients lower than the latest reported for China (

ROFL, someone actually thinks declared income actually means something when measuring inequality.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_distribution_of_wealth

July 9, 2012 @ 1:01 am | Comment

Richard
The two issues are glued at the hip. The economy is the only justification used to keep China a one-party state under the unquestionable rule of the CCP.

No, it isn’t. It’s the only metric you are aware of because presumably that’s where your focus lies.

Handler
The problem with the notion of a “civilization-state”, which really is simply another term for empire (one hesitates to mention that area around Urumqi)

China’s “empire building” is an exception in all of history and to deny it is to proclaim ignorance. The core of China was acquired slowly by cultural diffusion and marriages, and (generally) not through military campaigns as in the case of the Romans, Persians, Arabs, Akkadians/Assyrians/Babylonians, Incans, etc. India would count if the people actually cohered, but they don’t and never did.

justrecently
Chinese society is traumatized from CCP rule – that means a lot of insecurity. However, prolonged totalitarian rule over China won’t make things better.

Some evidence of this “trauma”, please. Anyone who resorts to nonsense like this has no right to use the word “bullshit”.

The real problem are areas like Xinjiang and Tibet, where relations between the original inhabitants and Chinese settlers are hard to assess.

There is no problem. There can be a “Westernization” of Chinese efforts to cement their rule over these areas, if you wish. I refer to Australia, Canada, the United States and other self-proclaimed moral paragons.

But reality tells us the Uighur are not at all “native” to Xinjiang, and your pretenses to this revisionist history are offensive to anyone with even a basic understanding of Xinjiang’s history.

because if there was no imperialism in the world there would be no China.

Disagree. If there was no imperialism in the world China would be preeminent. America and Europe would collapse.

SK Cheung
Has anyone stated/suggested/implied/intimated/opined that China should become just like the US of A?

No, but they’re (you’re) suggesting China should be more like America. They should do just the opposite.

Peter
This is why the great civilizations in the world were not based on nationhood. These would include the Greek and Roman empires, and the Chinese. None of these were defined by ethnicity or ancestry, and they all seem to include at least a proto-universalism. The high point of Chinese civilization is usually considered to be the Tang Dynasty, a time noted for its openness and cosmopolitan nature.

The Tang was great, as said above, because it was predominantly Chinese. The foreigners in (Southern) China were a tiny subset of trading or intellectual elites that were drawn to China because she was rich. They didn’t make China powerful – in fact they brought about the downfall of the Tang as an unrestricted flow of foreigners from Central Asia created chaos when An Lushan led an army of ingrates and usurpers in an attempt to destroy Chinese civilization.

Multiculturalists have warped the history of the Tang and Song Dynasties to suit their agenda, but they neglect to mention that ethnic conflict essentially defined their existence. Pogroms against arrogant minorities were frequent and the wars with the Jurchen, Turks, etc basically forged much of Chinese identity today.

July 9, 2012 @ 1:25 am | Comment

“I would laugh if the Chinese electorate voted for an actual hardline, xenophobic, militaristic government.”
— I wouldn’t find it funny. But if that’s what Chinese people chose for themselves, I’d respect it as their choice even if I disagreed with it.

” It’s the only metric you are aware of because presumably that’s where your focus lies.”
—I think that’s where most Chinese people’s focus lies. But then you’re not a chinesecitizen. I agree with whoever mentioned earlier that the average Chinese person probably doesn’t lie awake at night distraught over the rights they don’t have. As Richard says, people don’t usually miss their rights until they no longer have it, so the average Chinese person probably doesn’t get too exercised until its their turn to get screwed over. Then they probably wish the Ccp was different. But for the average person, I think the economy is where it’s at. You might try to suggest that Chinese are thankful to the Ccp for keeping them “safe”, or maybe for getting a strong military to satisfy their inner Rambo. But I think those are peripheral “benefits”, and they don’t pay the freight literally or figuratively.

” but they’re (you’re) suggesting China should be more like America”
—seriously lol. Show me one (1) occasion where I have done this. But anyway, it’s the straw man that apologists like you have to resort to, I guess. And you folks probably come by it honestly, since it’s a perspective that comes directly from the mother ship. A blogger sent me this:

http://thediplomat.com/china-power/for-china-its-all-about-america/

Might explain the mindset of folks like you.

July 9, 2012 @ 3:03 am | Comment

SK Cheung
But if that’s what Chinese people chose for themselves, I’d respect it as their choice even if I disagreed with it.

I highly doubt Chinese people would do something similar, but logically this means you support the historical election of the Nazi Party in Germany. This, clearly, is wildly irrational.

But for the average person, I think the economy is where it’s at.

According to most “happiness” surveys, the nation’s household balance sheet matters the most to the average person. Technology would probably come pretty close. I’m pretty sure shutting down people’s TVs/internet connections would create a revolution far faster than a 5% contraction in GDP.

As Richard says, people don’t usually miss their rights until they no longer have it

That’s an untested theory. People who live in countries that have gone from democratic to fascist were typically no less content as long as employment and GDP was up. As long as the “taking away of rights” doesn’t infringe on individual comforts, they usually will not protest.

As for your link, it’s tripe written by a propagandist, and I’m not surprised you stand by it.

Show me one (1) occasion where I have done this.

All the times you have implied democracy would benefit China without ever offering a single shred of proof supporting your claim.

July 9, 2012 @ 3:25 am | Comment

“ROFL, someone actually thinks declared income actually means something when measuring inequality.”

This from the guy who’s quoting the 2000 stats for wealth inequality (which by strange co-incidence, are the only metrics for inequality that don’t make China look massively unequal) and trying to make out that they count today. The Chinese government hasn’t published these statistics in meantime because, errrm, what?

And if inequality isn’t a problem in China, then why does the Chinese government’s own experts, refering to the Gini income figures, say it is? Again, here’s that China Daily piece just in case you missed it the first time round:

http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2010-05/12/content_9837073.htm

July 9, 2012 @ 5:48 am | Comment

The core of China was acquired slowly by cultural diffusion and marriages, and (generally) not through military campaigns.

To the extent that that is true, it supports my thesis that great civilizations are based on culture and ideas. I do question the claim that China is different from every other empire though. Certainly the ideal empire as envisaged by Chinese sages grows through something like “cultural diffusion” as people are drawn to a just and humane ruler, but Qin Shihuang set the tone for the rest of Chinese history and he did so in a very different fashion. Chinese history is a history of military campaigns; one of China’s most well-known cultural products is a book on warfare. The Vietnamese fought China much longer than they fought the French and Americans, and rejected military support from China during the Vietnam War – because Ho Chi Minh thought that Mao Zedong might see Vietnam (once known in China as “Pacified South”) as another Tibet, former Chinese territory to be recovered. Today, China has had wars or shooting incidents with nearly every country on its border. I suspect that Cookie Monster’s comparing China with the other great empires is a case of comparing an ideal apple with real-world oranges.

I repeat: China was and is an empire. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing on balance; in many ways it’s better than the alternatives. But you don’t get empires without imperialism.

July 9, 2012 @ 5:49 am | Comment

FOARP
which by strange co-incidence, are the only metrics for inequality that don’t make China look massively unequal

Wait what? What other metrics are there? Home ownership? China has a relatively high rate for its level of wealth. Indebtedness? Check. China has among the fewest people in debt (or negative net worth) in the world. Childhood malnutrition? Lower than 7% for China, 47% for India. Crime rates? Among the lowest in the world.

All of these, especially crime rates, are good indirect measures of inequality. And there are more recent figures by Credit Suisse but it’s in a huge PDF that no one is going to look at: https://www.credit-suisse.com/news/doc/credit_suisse_global_wealth_databook.pdf

And if inequality isn’t a problem in China, then why does the Chinese government’s own experts, refering to the Gini income figures, say it is?

What kind of argument is that? First of all, I didn’t say it wasn’t a problem. It’s a problem everywhere. It’s just one that China has handled “better” than many others. Low rates of taxation for the poor, government housing, subsidies for food and healthcare. What else do you want them to do? Raid people’s bank accounts?

but Qin Shihuang set the tone for the rest of Chinese history and he did so in a very different fashion.

The Qin Dynasty focused most of its energy on other Sinic states, in response to pressure from the frontiers by nomadic confederations. They didn’t pursue an active policy of conquest of “foreigners”.

The Vietnamese fought China much longer than they fought the French and Americans

They also coexisted with China far longer than any two major neighboring European states have. Likewise, they were not actively rebelling for the full 1,000 years or so they were “ruled” by China. Lastly, even despite being “occupied” for a thousand years Vietnam’s genetic profile is largely the same, they speak their own language and have their own culture. Doesn’t look like Tibet is going to disappear any time soon.

Today, China has had wars or shooting incidents with nearly every country on its border.

Every country on China’s border has had even more shooting incidents with every country on their border than China has with them. But you don’t hear the West’s media shrieking hypocritically about skirmishes between the Philippines and Vietnam, or disputes between Japan and Korea over Dokdo/Takeshima, and especially not about India’s campaigns in Kashmir which have killed untold thousands of civilians.

I’m definitely not saying that China doesn’t have a military tradition, it’s just that they don’t really have much of an expansionist impulse. China has always been surrounded by weak states they could have easily predated on, but they didn’t bully them – even if a few revisionist China scholars in the West like to propagate the notion that the tributary system was extractive.

July 9, 2012 @ 6:55 am | Comment

The latter part of that comment was to Peter, of course.

Likewise FOARP, the CCP (stupidly) uses income Gini as a measure of inequality. That’s why any policies aimed at fixing the problem based on this (aside from lowering the threshold for paying income tax) have been failures.

July 9, 2012 @ 6:58 am | Comment

“but logically this means you support the historical election of the Nazi Party in Germany.”
—ahhh yes, it is ironic that it is folks like you who never tire of the Nazi references. Yes, the Nazi’s were elected by Germans back in the 1930s, BEFORE the Nazis became…well…the Nazis. Of course, you overlook the fact that by the time the Nazis became the Nazis, Germans probably wouldn’t have supported them any longer, but by then they no longer had the choice. Actually, might be some parallels in there with the CCP. Sure, Chinese people supported the CCP back in 1949. But do they still? And do they have any choice in the matter? The isolated use of “Nazis” without the complete historical context is beyond stupid.

“According to most “happiness” surveys…”
—are you dragging up the Pew stuff again? Haven’t we been through this before?

“the nation’s household balance sheet matters the most to the average person.”
—gee, I wonder if the economy has anything to do with that?…

“I’m pretty sure shutting down people’s TVs/internet connections would create a revolution far faster than a 5% contraction in GDP.”
—that might be true. And if the CCP started randomly shooting kids in the street, or if they randomly started to force feed melamine milk to kids…and a whole bunch of other things that might have a more immediate effect in turning people against them. Are those plausible scenarios? Nope. So one wonders why you would bother with such a stupid argument. Presumably, the CCP isn’t out to piss off people and have them turn against it. But if the economy tanks despite the CCP’s best efforts and people then turn against it, that would be what Richard is talking about, and quite separate from your idiotic example.

“People who live in countries that have gone from democratic to fascist were typically no less content as long as employment and GDP was up.”
—jesus christ, dude. I said this in the very next sentence (in fact, it’s the same sentence, separated from what you quoted only by a comma): “so the average Chinese person probably doesn’t get too exercised until its their turn to get screwed over”. You take selective quoting and cherry picking to retardedly low levels. Well done.

“it’s tripe written by a propagandist”
—but it’s tripe that squarely pegs tripe like you. If the shoe fits, sing it loud and wear it proud, buddy.

“All the times you have implied democracy would benefit China ”
—LOL. The challenge was for you to back up your contention that I have been “suggesting China should be more like America”. And this is all you’ve got? Truly pathetic stuff. But you do what you gotta do, as I always say. You should be ashamed…except you are probably incapable of that level of self-reflection.

July 9, 2012 @ 7:25 am | Comment

SK Cheung
the Nazi’s were elected by Germans back in the 1930s, BEFORE the Nazis became…well…the Nazis.

Uh nope, they were the same people before and after. They openly despised Slavs and Jews and few Germans did anything to stop their atrocities.

Actually, might be some parallels in there with the CCP.

Uhh, nope.

are you dragging up the Pew stuff again? Haven’t we been through this before?

The part where you were wrong? No, these are different surveys done by other groups and another by Pew again.

gee, I wonder if the economy has anything to do with that?…

Gee, I wonder if you are capable of common sense or logic? The economy is second to it. But to manage a nation’s finances is entirely different from managing the economy. The latter feeds into the former, but GDP could drop 30% and China could likewise still accumulate with.

one wonders why you would bother with such a stupid argumenter.

I ask this to myself constantly. My point is that they care more about technology (something the CCP has been key in proliferating due to contracts, buying IP, investment plans) than “the economy” as you seem to understand it.

But if the economy tanks despite the CCP’s best efforts and people then turn against it, that would be what Richard is talking about, and quite separate from your idiotic example.

Except that’s not going to happen, your idiotic fantasies aside.

The challenge was for you to back up your contention that I have been “suggesting China should be more like America”

Should I dig through your posts and provide proof that the sun is hot? No, I’m not going to waste your time. All of your posts are about how great democracy is and how America’s system is so wonderful and flawless. If you have changed that attitude, then I’m glad you’re making progress – kinda like how I had to explain to you the difference between wealth and income, the fact that Gini is not indeed spelled GINI and is not strictly a measure of income inequality, etc.

Again, your post proves you can only throw crybaby tantrums when facts prove you wrong.

July 9, 2012 @ 7:41 am | Comment

the economy is secondary to household balance sheets *

July 9, 2012 @ 7:41 am | Comment

“Uh nope, they were the same people before and after”
—lol again. How many elections did Germans have after hitler became chancellor in 1933? (until 1945 of course). How many mandates did the nazis receive after they showed themselves to be the nazis as we know them? Similarly, how many mandates have the Ccp received since they showed themselves to be the Ccp as we know them?

Love how you dragged up credit Suisse again. That would be the study showing chinas wealth Gini to be increasing. Great stuff.

As for pew, I admit I haven’t looked it up this year. Has their methodology improved, or is it the same old stuff I’ve gone on at length about before? And these “other surveys”… Any of them worth the paper they’re written on?

” but GDP could drop 30% and China could likewise still accumulate with.”
—such a basic concept you’ve yet to grasp. China as a country is already reasonably rich. It’s Chinese the people who remain generally poor. Sure, china could still accumulate wealth if GDP declined. But Chinese people, not so much. Obviously, the needs of Chinese people are not front of mind for you. But they’re the ones who will ultimately decide if the Ccp stays or goes…and a GDP drop of 30% would go a long way.

Yes Chinese people like the rest of us rely more and more on “technology”. But is the Ccp about to shut off their tech access? If not, then your point is irrelevant. You’re trying to deny that economy reigns supreme when it comes to the ccp’s raison d’etre among chinese, by bringing up potential Chinese anger with removal of tech like Internet access. You then say that Ccp is investing here. So yes, Chinese people value their tech, but that has nothing to do with their motivation for keeping the Ccp around, since (a) the Ccp isn’t threatening to take it away, and (b) any other governance system could provide the same thing. In fact, I would love to see the day when Chinese people realize you don’t need an authoritarian government to manage a market economy. One really wonders about the source of your stupidity to come up with these idiotic arguments.

“All of your posts are about how great democracy is and how America’s system is so wonderful and flawless”
—for once, you could just admit you put your foot into your mouth, then move on. But nope, obfuscate away. Such a lack of character and evidence of poor upbringing. Recurring character trait/flaw when it comes to folks like you. It still amazes me that the Ccp collects such a sampling of winners like you to do their bidding. Birds of a feather, I suppose.

July 9, 2012 @ 9:33 am | Comment

That would be the study showing chinas wealth Gini to be increasing.

Moronic argument. It’s increasing everywhere.

Any of them worth the paper they’re written on?

Well one is affiliated with BBC, so maybe not.

http://www.globescan.com/images/images/pressreleases/bbc2012_country_ratings/2012_bbc_country%20rating%20final%20080512.pdf

China as a country is already reasonably rich. It’s Chinese the people who remain generally poor.

You have no idea what you’re talking about.

But they’re the ones who will ultimately decide if the Ccp stays or goes…and a GDP drop of 30% would go a long way.

Nice fantasy. In that case, the fact that the CCP is still in power is testament to widespread approval. I agree.

But is the Ccp about to shut off their tech access? If not, then your point is irrelevant.

Learn how to read.

by bringing up potential Chinese anger with removal of tech like Internet access.

No. Learn how to read. My point was that Chinese people enjoy the benefits of technological advancement (that which doesn’t show on GDP or unemployment figures) brought to them faster by CCP policies, including solar water heating/power as part of the rural electrification project, etc.

(b) any other governance system could provide the same thing.

Prove it. China has seen faster proliferation of internet/mobile/energy tech than any country in the history of the world.

I would love to see the day when Chinese people realize you don’t need an authoritarian government to manage a market economy

I would love to see the day when you have half a clue and realize that a market doesn’t operate independently of the rest of the nation. CCP policies have created an efficient military doctrine to defend Chinese economic interests, have set decent policies in place for the growth of wealth, has a taxation scheme favorable to the poor, and has presided over the greatest boom in scientific publishing and IP that the world has ever seen.

You, on the other hand, have only eaten more of your paste, made empty threats, generally contributed nothing to humanity and made ad hominem posts on the internet. Congratulations.

Such a lack of character and evidence of poor upbringing.

When you’re too incompetent to present real arguments supporting your idiotic claims, resort to personal attacks.

You’re the perfect argument against democracy. People who support it for China are similarly delusional or mentally ill.

July 9, 2012 @ 9:51 am | Comment

“China’s “empire building” is an exception in all of history and to deny it is to proclaim ignorance. The core of China was acquired slowly by cultural diffusion and marriages, and (generally) not through military campaigns as in the case of the Romans, Persians, Arabs, Akkadians/Assyrians/Babylonians, Incans, etc. India would count if the people actually cohered, but they don’t and never did.”

Since China’s own military researchers claim that China fought over 1/3rd of the total number of battles in the world on historical record until the end of the Qing, your comments here have roughly the value of a stray cat trying to lick tidbits from an empty can.

July 9, 2012 @ 10:29 am | Comment

Nice try, but lets try to actually think for a second – you do realize that wars can be defensive in nature, correct?

July 9, 2012 @ 10:46 am | Comment

“China’s “empire building” is an exception in all of history and to deny it is to proclaim ignorance. The core of China was acquired slowly by cultural diffusion and marriages, and (generally) not through military campaigns as in the case of the Romans, Persians, Arabs, Akkadians/Assyrians/Babylonians, Incans, etc. India would count if the people actually cohered, but they don’t and never did.”

Uh huh. So this Qin johnny first emperor was basically a hippy that invited the other states to join his in some sort of love-fest?

July 9, 2012 @ 11:22 am | Comment

“I’m definitely not saying that China doesn’t have a military tradition, it’s just that they don’t really have much of an expansionist impulse. China has always been surrounded by weak states they could have easily predated on, but they didn’t bully them – even if a few revisionist China scholars in the West like to propagate the notion that the tributary system was extractive.”

So when the Orkhon inscriptions provide an account of the Chinese enslaving them, it was just an exception. This was, after all, merely cultural diffusion.

The desire for self-purification. It’s a beautiful thing, especially when China’s military authors argue that China has no original sin.

July 9, 2012 @ 11:43 am | Comment

“Nice try, but lets try to actually think for a second – you do realize that wars can be defensive in nature, correct?”

Well, that’s a surprising argument. Poor China. More than one third of all the wars noted in the historical record. Surely China is an exceptional victim.

July 9, 2012 @ 12:14 pm | Comment

“My point was that Chinese people enjoy the benefits of technological advancement (that which doesn’t show on GDP or unemployment figures) brought to them faster by CCP policies, including solar water heating/power as part of the rural electrification project, etc.”

It would be best to consider China’s urban/rural energy consumption if you want to apply this argument to the hinterlands.

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421509003413

Considering the urban/rural population ratio, the difference in energy consumption is astounding. You can’t be using technology if you are not consuming energy.

July 9, 2012 @ 12:39 pm | Comment

Great, yeah, why not, let’s keep arguing with a guy who quotes statistics that the Chinese government themselves hasn’t dared publish in more than 12 years for fear of what they show. Look, by the metric which China’s own government scientists use to measure inequality (income Gini – something they haven’t published properly for a few years as well, again, because they’re afraid of what the figures show) China has inequality problems comparable to those of basket-cases like Venezuela and Sri Lanka, and greater than those of India, Turkey, or Thailand.

Oh, and the OECD’s developing democracies I listed above have, by-and-large, seen decreasing income inequality over the last decade.

July 9, 2012 @ 1:37 pm | Comment

To the idiotic #70:
“It’s increasing everywhere.”
—that’s nice. But once again, I’m not comparing; only you are. I’m just saying that China’s is increasing…right there…courtesy of your own link. LOL.

“In that case, the fact that the CCP is still in power is testament to widespread approval. I agree.”
—you are special even among morons. The GDP hasn’t dropped 30%…yet. It was a supposition on your part. Where is this testament to widespread approval? How do you not fall down more? IF it fell 30%, AND the CCP still remained in power, THEN you might have something. But it hasn’t…so right now, you have nothing…which is becoming habit-forming for you.

“My point was that Chinese people enjoy the benefits of technological advancement (that which doesn’t show on GDP or unemployment figures) brought to them faster by CCP policies, including solar water heating/power as part of the rural electrification project, etc.”
—ahh, so once again, when your stupidity gets called out, the point changes. No longer is it the “TV/internet connections” crap you tried to pull in #61, but it’s solar heating and solar electric…the latter of which is a highly subsidized industry that the CCP can afford to pay for because of…you guessed it…the economy. Which again comes back to the inescapable fact that the economy is the CCP’s only means of legitimacy, try as you might. But please, change your point again. It’s fun to watch.

“China has seen faster proliferation of internet/mobile/energy tech”
—and what has the CCP got to do with that?

“CCP policies have created an efficient military doctrine to defend Chinese economic interests, have set decent policies in place for the growth of wealth, has a taxation scheme favorable to the poor, and has presided over the greatest boom in scientific publishing and IP that the world has ever seen.”
—wow, that sounds fantastic. THe IP part is a bit much, considering what she has stolen and what little of other people’s IP the CCP protects. But still, that’s a fantastic package. The CCP should be so proud of being able to go before the public and be judged based on her accomplishments…except the CCP isn’t quite so keen to go before the public and be judged. Why is that?

“resort to personal attacks”
—oh please. I’ve had you pegged as someone with shoddy character and lousy quality of upbringing since the very beginning. Like I said before, if the shoe fits, wear it proud and sing it loud. It’s not just the stupidity and crappy logic. Everyone has their limitations. But it’s the repeated inability to own it that earns you the more damning assessments. For instance, so far you’ve gone from internet access to solar energy. I wonder where you’ll waffle towards next…

July 9, 2012 @ 3:00 pm | Comment

Great, yeah, why not, let’s keep arguing with a guy who quotes statistics that the Chinese government themselves hasn’t dared publish in more than 12 years for fear of what they show.

It’s these kinds of discussions that never cease to amaze me. Time in a boxing club is, as a rule, much better spent. Don’t get me wrong – I do believe there are debates that are worth all the CO2, but exchanges with CM rarely fall into that category.

July 9, 2012 @ 7:44 pm | Comment

Great, yeah, why not, let’s keep arguing with a guy who quotes statistics that the Chinese government themselves hasn’t dared publish in more than 12 years for fear of what they show.

It’s these kinds of discussions that never cease to amaze me. Time in a boxing club is, as a rule, much better spent. Don’t get me wrong – I do believe there are debates that are worth all the CO2, but exchanges with CM rarely fall into that category.

July 9, 2012 @ 7:46 pm | Comment

This is actually a pretty good sign–China’s youth are awakening in terms of having a sense of civic responsibility.

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/4fcbab6c-c67d-11e1-963a-00144feabdc0.html#axzz209D4Czfg

If the pieces are coordinated correctly, there may exist the possibility to forge a civil society out of this. Good news all around.

July 10, 2012 @ 1:31 am | Comment

Cookie is a borderline troll, but I’d like us to avoid calling each other stupid and other names. I believe his words speak for themselves.

July 10, 2012 @ 2:15 am | Comment

Handler
So when the Orkhon inscriptions provide an account of the Chinese enslaving them, it was just an exception. This was, after all, merely cultural diffusion.

The Orkhon inscriptions, by the Gokturks? The same Gokturks that raided Chinese territory for hundreds of years? The same Gokturks that enslaved their own people and those of China’s allies and sold them?

Well, that’s a surprising argument. Poor China. More than one third of all the wars noted in the historical record. Surely China is an exceptional victim.

Yes, common sense and real history are no doubt a surprise to you. You seem you think you’re an expert, but you’re shocked that nomads invade sedentary civilizations? Oh those poor Mongols, Huns, Gokturks, Avars, etc.

Considering the urban/rural population ratio, the difference in energy consumption is astounding. You can’t be using technology if you are not consuming energy.

So you’re neither a historian nor an economist – got it. The cities use more power because industry is concentrated in urban areas. Do you really think a nation expends most of their power heating water and run mobile devices and television sets?

SK Cheung
I’m just saying that China’s is increasing…right there…courtesy of your own link. LOL.

All I’m saying is that your “point” is irrelevant. LOL. Answer my question, how do you think the CCP should reverse or stop the increase? Do you even know how taxation works in China? And since you reject comparisons, we can now throw out democracy from the discussion altogether as unproven theory. China just is.

But it hasn’t…so right now, you have nothing…which is becoming habit-forming for you.

Learn how to read and follow an argument, and stop whining like a little baby. Your argument was that if GDP slows to any significant degree (not my illustrative exaggeration) the people will overthrow the CCP. My argument is that your childish wet dream will never come to fruition – but since you think the Chinese people will overthrow the CCP whenever they are mad enough, the fact that they haven’t is clearly a 30 year endorsement of CCP rule.

ahh, so once again, when my stupidity gets called out, the point changes. No longer is it the “TV/internet connections” crap you tried to pull in #61, but it’s solar heating and solar electric…the latter of which is a highly subsidized industry that the CCP can afford to pay for because of…you guessed it…the economy.

Learn how to read. I used TV/internet as an example. The fact that you don’t know anything else about China’s technological advancements is not my problem. The fact that you’re not smart enough to follow simple logic is also not my problem.

China could afford subsidizing solar even if GDP slowed to 0% growth, my economically/financially challenged friend. Learn what net worth means.

and what has the CCP got to do with that?

lol.

THe IP part is a bit much, considering what she has stolen and what little of other people’s IP the CCP protects.

What an incredibly stupid statement. China buys most of their IP, and the ones they “steal” don’t get counted as domestic patents. Regardless, the CCP isn’t exceptional in “stealing” technology. The only difference is that the CCP is sophisticated enough to pull it off and get away with it. They use their market as a weapon just like America and the EU do. Any other nation in China’s position and with China’s capabilities would do the same.

I’ve had you pegged as someone with shoddy character and lousy quality of upbringing since the very beginning.

Meaningless, as your opinions and judgments are usually incredibly retarded.

justrecently
but exchanges with CM rarely fall into that category.

I’m sure – me arguing with you is like a Mike Tyson punching a little girl’s face in. You are horribly outclassed.

July 10, 2012 @ 9:32 am | Comment

“And since you reject comparisons, we can now throw out democracy from the discussion altogether as unproven theory. China just is.”
—if only that were true. I’m all for letting Chinese people be, and letting them make their own decisions. Sadly, the CCP is not so open-minded. So Chinese people are stuck with the CCP’s version…for now.

“but since you think the Chinese people will overthrow the CCP whenever they are mad enough, the fact that they haven’t is clearly a 30 year endorsement of CCP rule.”
—actually, the fact they haven’t, using your own logic here, is simply because they aren’t mad enough…yet. THere is no endorsement of CCP rule…i mean, how can there be any endorsement? In fact, if the CCP wanted an endorsement, she would actually need to put the choice to Chinese people, which the CCP is too chicken shit to do. However, if the GDP starts to drop, then people may well get mad enough at the CCP to demand a change in scenery. And it won’t be a moment too soon.

“I used TV/internet as an example.”
—LOL. An example of what? Oh, that’s to be determined later when you need to start waffling and obfuscating as per standard procedure.

“China could afford subsidizing solar even if GDP slowed to 0% growth,”
—is that an “example”, or a “point”? With your low-rent style, one can hardly tell. Sure, China can finance stuff even without growth. Like I said earlier, China the country is fairly rich. Chinese the people, however, are not. Hey, but you never know, if China’s GDP growth stalls, perhaps the average Chinese person can be placated with most excellent internet connections and not demand removal of the CCP. Good luck with that.

“and what has the CCP got to do with that?…
lol.”
—you’re right, for once. Cuz the CCP has sweet jack all to do with it.

Anyway, nice to see you justifying CHina stealing IP. Goes to character, like I’ve pointed out before. You seem to have ignored the rest of the paragraph though: “But still, that’s a fantastic package. The CCP should be so proud of being able to go before the public and be judged based on her accomplishments…except the CCP isn’t quite so keen to go before the public and be judged. Why is that?”. I think the CCP being chicken-shit has much to do with it. Perhaps you have other “insights”.

BTW, one wonders if you even bother to read your own links, like that BBC survey from #70. On the other hand, we can always rely on you for inadvertent comic value. Anyhow, the BBC survey actually reports 95% confidence intervals. Basic stuff, but something Pew even fails to do. In the methods and elsewhere, you’ll see that the Chinese sample came only from urban centers – same flaw of non-randomness as Pew. But at least stated clearly; they didn’t try to hide it. But the main problem for you is that it is NOT a survey of the satisfaction of Chinese people with China/CCP, the aforementioned methodological limitations notwithstanding; it is a survey of international views of national influence. So it’s asking what respondents thought of China’s influence in the world; it’s not asking how content Chinese people are within China. It is most definitely not a “happiness” survey that you alluded to in #61. Anyway, in the future you might want to run it by me first to see if a study says what you’re hoping it would say, rather than having me tell you in no uncertain terms after you’ve already put it out there. Then again, for someone in your position making the arguments that you make, i guess there is no room for being thin-skinned and shy, eh?

July 10, 2012 @ 10:17 am | Comment

SKC – CM is clearly logic-proof, what point is there in continuing?

July 10, 2012 @ 2:22 pm | Comment

I think it’s good to make CM talk – to shed some light on how people like him think -, but it’s also good to leave it at some point – let the readers judge by themselves. I don’t think that, as a rule, people who drop by without taking part in a discussioon will read much more than a dozen or so comments anyway.

July 10, 2012 @ 9:47 pm | Comment

“The Orkhon inscriptions, by the Gokturks? The same Gokturks that raided Chinese territory for hundreds of years? The same Gokturks that enslaved their own people and those of China’s allies and sold them?”

You mean the Insubrian Gauls? The same Gauls that raided Roman territory for hundreds of years? The same Gauls that enslaved their own people and those of Rome’s allies and sold them?

It seems the phrase you are reaching for is “Nice one, Centurion!”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URTj4naIdAs

“Yes, common sense and real history are no doubt a surprise to you. You seem you think you’re an expert, but you’re shocked that nomads invade sedentary civilizations? Oh those poor Mongols, Huns, Gokturks, Avars, etc.”

I’m not. Nor am I shocked that sedentary civilizations expand and take over more territory. What I am bemused by is your attempt to claim the military wasn’t extraordinarily active in expanding the Chinese empire (and holding it together), and not only because it is still necessary to hold it together today.

“So you’re neither a historian nor an economist – got it. The cities use more power because industry is concentrated in urban areas.”

Naturally the cities use more power, but the divide between China’s urban and rural areas is enormous, and the fact that industry is concentrated in cities doesn’t help your argument that rural areas are enjoying the fruits of China’s technological advancement.

“Do you really think a nation expends most of their power heating water and run mobile devices and television sets?”

Are you are limiting technological advancement to those provisions? A nation whose citizens are technologically empowered will witness an increase in the consumption of energy in the form of residential and electrical use. One needs to use both categories to account for the potential consumption of residential energy in highly untechnological forms like cheap biomass rather than things like refrigerators, air conditioners, adequate public and private lighting, appliances, computers and electronics. The US consumes roughly 10% of its energy in residential and commercial use and 40% in electric power. Yes, we know China is a developing country. Let’s just not try to exaggerate the degree to which the rural populace is “enjoying the benefits of technological advancement” brought to them so rapidly by the CCP.

JR

Is this talking?

July 11, 2012 @ 12:38 am | Comment

Is this talking?

No. I suppose it’s a speech.

July 11, 2012 @ 1:56 am | Comment

S.K Cheung
I’m all for letting Chinese people be, and letting them make their own decisions.

Again with your “letting Chinese decide” BS. No, 51% of Chinese decide for the other 49%. I see no problem with local democracy (for cities and prefectures), but the concept does not scale well.

However, if the GDP starts to drop

Whoops, it already dropped in several quarters. Or do Chinese people only care about YOY figures?

Like I said earlier, China the country is fairly rich. Chinese the people, however, are not.

I take this as a simplistic point about China’s aggregate net worth being high but the “people” being relatively poor because there are so many to divide the assets among, correct?

I don’t see the point here. Per capita wealth in China is growing faster than anywhere in human history.

I think the CCP being chicken-shit has much to do with it.

The CCP doesn’t give referendums because it sees no need to.

Handler
It seems the phrase you are reaching for is “Nice one, Centurion!”

Your failed attempt on a point presumes, with no evidence, that Imperial China was anywhere near as evil as Rome was. There is no comparison.

What I am bemused by is your attempt to claim the military wasn’t extraordinarily active in expanding the Chinese empire

I said China wasn’t expansionist. Holding fiercely on to territory already incorporated into the state is a different matter.

the divide between China’s urban and rural areas is enormous, and the fact that industry is concentrated in cities doesn’t help your argument that rural areas are enjoying the fruits of China’s technological advancement.

Yes, it does. Cities simply require that much more power to function. It doesn’t explain all of the difference, but the fact that TVs are near universal and cell phones have such a high penetration rate in rural China would crush your point – if you had any facts to back it up in the first place.

A nation whose citizens are technologically empowered will witness an increase in the consumption of energy in the form of residential and electrical use.

Are you saying China hasn’t “witnessed an increase in the consumption of energy”? Please explain why technology is proliferating in the Chinese countryside faster than anywhere else.

July 11, 2012 @ 10:10 am | Comment

“I see no problem with local democracy (for cities and prefectures)”
—hey, that’d be a start. Assuming that local jurisdiction is actually respected and not run roughshod over at the whim of higher levels of government. But baby steps, I suppose. Yet even with baby steps, the CCP hasn’t gotten very far.

“Whoops, it already dropped in several quarters.”
—indeed. If the trend continues, or accelerates, Xi will be in for a nice coronation.

“China’s aggregate net worth being high but the “people” being relatively poor because there are so many to divide the assets among”
—I suppose that’s part of it, but I was actually referring to the assets the CCP owns versus the assets Chinese people own. Or you can think of it as public vs private.

“Per capita wealth in China is growing faster than anywhere in human history.”
—perhaps, but the distribution remains skewed, and is getting progressively more skewed. And if the economy/GDP growth drastically slows, the per capita effect might be blunted (because of the population size), but the have-nots will quickly approach ‘have-nothing’. And that could be a powerful motivator for such people.

“The CCP doesn’t give referendums because it sees no need to.”
—hey, you’re the one talking about “endorsement”. I’m not surprised if the CCP sees no need to obtain “endorsement”, since it only cares about its own survival and the approval of her people is of no importance. Of course, even a dog-and-pony show of “endorsement” is something authoritarian regimes love to put on (N. Korea comes to mind). So i guess the CCP doesn’t have quite the iron grip of the Kim’s (a good thing), and it doesn’t want to know. I don’t blame them for being leery of what people might say.

Anyway, hope you now have a better understanding of your own BBC study.

July 11, 2012 @ 11:03 am | Comment

“Your failed attempt on a point presumes, with no evidence, that Imperial China was anywhere near as evil as Rome was. There is no comparison.”

Actually, there are many areas of comparison (cultural diffusion, enslavement, chauvinism, etc.)–some even raised by your claim about China’s imperial exceptionality above. I take it you are not familiar with Tarquinius Priscus and Rome’s core, are you?

“but the fact that TVs are near universal and cell phones have such a high penetration rate in rural China would crush your point – if you had any facts to back it up in the first place.”

Not surprisingly, it wouldn’t. It would, however, explain your obsession with two pieces of technology while 50% of China’s population makes do with 15% of its energy.

July 11, 2012 @ 1:27 pm | Comment

If no one minds, I think I’ve had enough of this thread. Use the new post on A Confucian Constitution as an open thread if you want to carry on.

July 11, 2012 @ 1:47 pm | Comment

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