Posted by: rbbadger | September 6, 2008

The Problems of Corruption

The Chinese government has been talking a great deal about reform these days.  Mai Kai, a state councillor of the Chinese government, has called for a more open and transparent government, something which will exceedingly difficult to achieve.  Korea has had a difficult experiment with democracy ever since it became a reality in 1987.  The nation has witnessed two former presidents convicted of corruption, slews of government ministers convicted of similar offenses, and much more.  In a country where corruption has been the norm for a long time, achieving an open and transparent government is something not easily done.

Also, if the Chinese government is intent on transparency and political reform, they will have to realise that there will come a day, perhaps not soon, when their political party may fall from power.  Mexico achieved a transition from a one-party state to a multi-party state, as did Taiwan.  But such reforms came a tremendous cost.  At least this time, the Kuomintang achieved their victory this year via the democratic process as Mexico’s PRI has done with a number state governorships. 

I do not know whether or not Hu Jintao’s government can achieve such reforms.  But even if they make big steps towards democracy and reform of government institutions, it will come at a big price and not soon.  Korea is still battling corruption over 20 years later since the first popularly elected president took office.

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