Posted by: rbbadger | June 23, 2009

The Three Represents

As his term in office neared its end, Jiang Zemin, former President of the People’s Republic of China, got his ideology of the “Three Represents” put into the constitutions of both the Communist Party and the People’s Republic of China.  According to this thought, the Communist Party represents the “development trend of China’s advanced productive forces, the orientation of China’s advanced culture and the fundamental interests of the overwhelming majority of the Chinese people (Constitution of the Communist Party of China, Preamble).” 

An official overseeing development in China’s Henan Province, Lu Jun, found himself suspended when he asked a reporter if he would speak for the party or for the people.  Lu was found to have uttered an improper sentence and has been suspended pending an investigation.  Some of the senior leadership of the party were angered that Lu could have possibly said that the interests of the party or the interests of the people could ever be at odds.  While I have no doubt that they often are, this is just one of those questions that you don’t even ask. 

As China continues to change, the problems of corruption are going to have to be dealt with.  The government does understand this.  Widespread corruption, not to mention bad economic decisions, helped bring down the Ming Dynasty, the Qing Dynasty, and the Kuomintang-lead Republic of China back when Chiang Kai-shek ran the country.  Chiang ended up fleeing to Taiwan and the Ming found themsleves fleeing the oncoming Manchu hordes who eventually conquered the country and started the Qing Dynasty.  Corruption of government officials has angered many Chinese people.  The government is well aware of the rising anger of the people.  Whether or not they can do anything about it is anybody’s guess.  Singapore, which is like China more or less a one-party state, is well known for having a high degree of transparency and a low degree of official corruption.  Perhaps China could learn a lesson or two from the Republic of Singapore.

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