Dawn of a New China ??
24/11/2012 2 comentarios
Corruption Is a Serious Problem. In his speech to the 18th Party Congress, outgoing President Hu Jintao warned that corruption “could prove fatal to the party, and even cause the collapse of the party and the fall of the state.” The newly appointed general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party Xi Jinping also recognized that there are “many pressing problems within the party to be resolved, particularly corruption.” Why are party leaders so concerned about corruption? After all, China is not so corrupt if compared to countries with similar levels of economic development. According to Transparency International, democratic countries like Indonesia and India are perceived as more corrupt. But corruption won’t shake the foundations of the political system in democratic countries. Leaders get their legitimacy from being chosen by the people, and the people can change their leaders the next election if they aren’t satisfied. In China, the system is supposed to be a political meritocracy that selects leaders with superior ability and virtue. Put negatively, the regime will lack legitimacy if its leaders are seen to be corrupt. Until recently, most dissatisfaction in China was directed at corruption by lower level officials, but the Bo Xilai case points to rot at the top that more directly threatens the very foundations of the political system. So what should be done to combat corruption? Power of state-run enterprises needs to be curbed. A more open, critical news media, would help to expose abuses. Hong Kong has higher salaries for government officials and an independent anticorruption agency, measures that can be generalized to the rest of China. But such legal means won’t be sufficient without self-restraint and a sense of social responsibility on the part of political leaders. Official ideology of Marxism has hardly anything to offer in that respect. Hence, a necessary long-term measure to combat corruption is political education informed by ethical system, as Confucianism.