China: not nearly as capitalist as you think.
Aug 31, 2010
Aug 23, 2010
From the "press release" version of the political reform announcement
不仅要推进经济体制改革，还要推进政治体制改革。没有政治体制改革的保障，经济体制改革的成果就会得而复失，现代化建设的目标就不可能实现。要保障人民的民主权利和合法权益；要最广泛地动员和组织人民依法管理国家事务和经济、社会、文化事务；要从制度上解决权力过分集中又得不到制约的问题，创造条件让人民批评和监督政府，坚决惩治贪污腐败；要建设一个公平正义的社会，特别是要保障司法公正，重视保护和帮助弱势群体，使人们在生活中有安全感，对国家的发展有信心。Not only must we continue reforming the economic system, we must also engage in reform of the political system. Without the security brought about by political reforms, the fruits of the economic reforms [of the last three decades] will slip through our hands and the goal of achieving modernization will be impossible to reach.
We must protect the people's right to democracy and their legal rights & interests; we must, on the largest scale, mobilize and organize the people to manage the country's affairs and economic, social and cultural development, in accordance with the law; we must solve the systematic problem of overly-concentrated, unrestricted power; we must create [a space] for people to, with certain restrictions, criticize and oversee the government, in order to resolutely punish & control corruption; we must build a fair and just society, and must especially protect the impartiality of the justice system; we must place importance on protecting and helping the disadvantaged; We must provide the people with a sense of safety in their lives, and they will have confidence in the country's development.
I also learned that these reforms will include elections for candidates in senior political positions, but the nominating process will of course be dominated by the Party, and the actually voting will be done by the municipal party committee after nominees have been vetted by the powerful organization department (also a wing of the party, not the government).
Written by 阿牛 on 8/23/2010
Aug 22, 2010
Written by 阿牛 on 8/22/2010
Aug 3, 2010
I won't go into the rumors circulating within the local and Chinese media about the odds of an unexpectedly early "withdrawal" of Chinese missiles aimed at Taiwan. Someone else can cover that.
Written by 阿牛 on 8/03/2010