余亮：申纪兰与中国人民民主的故事最后更新: 2020-06-28 19:56:12
A lot of beautiful things perished this spring due to COVID-19, many lives too. All granddramas such as the European Cup and the Tokyo Olympic Games were put off. So will the drama of "democracy" be staged as scheduled？Well，in China, they also postponed the National People’s Congress (NPC) and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) -- known as the “two sessions” -- to late May.
However, the CPPCC has long been criticized as putting on a show or playing to the gallery by people in the self-proclaimed democratic world.Every year at that time, I and other journalists from the West would rush ourselves into the meeting hall and try the utmost to find anything interesting. Two years ago, a BBC reporter was turned down while asking a question concerning North Korea to an NPC deputy, hence the reporter slammed China for not being free in news reporting. Liu Xin, the pioneering anchor of China’s CCTV (yes, the one who debated with Trish Regan, former host of Fox Business) publicly refuted the BBC reporter as “trying a trick and making himself the subject of the story.” This made the BBC reporter yell angrily on Twitter: where are you!What a good day it was when western journalists were so energetic and critical! You could revel in the superiority that only the West had democracy and blame the Chinese for play acting, not knowing that the Knights of the Apocalypse would all of a sudden fall upon us.
According to Noam Chomsky, the epidemic makes it very difficult for the West to return to the past, and so does our declining democracy. Not only was this left-wing scholar opining on the epidemic, we also heard voices from Francis Fukuyama,indicating that the state’s capacity and people’s trust in government are more important than the type of the regime. Nathan Gardels, editor-in-chief of the WorldPost, quoted Chinese scholar Zhang Weiwei as saying:“In terms of competence and performance legitimacy, there is no necessary correlation with democracy” and “the main divide in the future may well not be over democracy and autocracy, but between good governance and bad governance.” Graham Allison, author of “Destined For War,” temporarily put aside the Thucydides trap and called on the United States to “face ugly facts about our own failures” and learn from China. The “prophets” of the United States do not seem to have lost their sense of reality like their reality-TV president, while European thinkers, such as Giorgio Agamben, are still talking about the harm that epidemic control brings to freedom and democracy. It’s nice for Judith Butler to put aside her insistence during the 2015 Paris attacks that counter-terrorism should not harm freedom, and instead considered whether vaccines could be fairly distributed in the capitalist world. Perhaps French philosopher Alain Badiou has been the calmest. He claimed that the epidemic has only once again exposed the political and economic contradictions in the globe, it is not worth making a fuss about, and it won’t bring any hope of innovation.
Maybe yes, it is not worth making a fuss about, and it won’t bring any hope of innovation.. In the recent month, the voices of western scholars have been less, perhaps because the weapons of criticism can not replace criticism of weapons, and the western world generally has no choice but to enter into what Boris called the state of national immunity. But really no hope at all?I mean, after all China has endured all criticism and abuse, basically contained the outbreak, won the trust of the people, and the country is now resuming production and will hold the twosessions soon. The hospitable Chinese hope that Western journalists can be present normally，stay young and stay critical.This time will journalists have enough time to cast doubts onchinese democracy？So, why don’t have a little patience and try to learn something from it? The Black Death that happened 700 years ago destroyed the old order in Europe, but it also unexpectedly promoted the revival of humanism in Italy. We all know Boccaccio's “Decameron”-- in the countryhome of their host, several narrators who fled the plague-ridden city of Florence pass the time by telling devianttales to each other which seriously impacted the spiritual world of the church. What about now? Amid the still-raging coronavirus pandemic, how about me telling you something about China’s democracy? Well, what I want to point out is that one of the important decisionsmade in China’s last Congress of the Communist Party was to “vigorously develop the socialist democracy.”
I took the pains to carefully read the full text of “The Decision of the Fourth Plenary Session of the 19th CPC Central Committee.”I would say that it is a little boring and not the kind of text you would enjoy reading. But I have to tell you that Article 3 of the decision is “Upholding and improving the system of institutions through which the people run the country and developing socialist democracy.”Noticing that Article 1 of the decision is “The great significance and overall requirements of upholding and improving the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics and advancing the modernization of China’s system and capacity for governance,” it is kind of a general remark. So, we can say that the importance of Article 3 comes only after Article 2, which is “Upholding and improving the system of institutions for Party leadership and improving the Party’s capacity to practice scientific, democratic and law-based governance.”
Without deeper thinking, Some Western friendswould normally saythat this further proves the Chinese democracy is subservient to the CPC and cannot be recognized as a true democracy. But don’t forget about charismatic authority, the kind that was highly spoken of by European thinker Max Weber. Such types of politicians are rarely seen in the West today, and what we see during the epidemic is more Hollywood politicians., But Weber. didn'tsee a political party may also be charismatic. In the early days of the outbreak in China, one of the most widely praised sentences among the Chinese people was,“Don't be afraid, as doctors and CPC members, we will go up first.”It touched and encouraged many people. As a matter of fact, CPC members have indeed rushed to the frontlines of the fight against the epidemic and hundreds of them give up lives heroically. What could better exemplify the close relationship between a political party and the people than this sentence? Is this conceivablein individualistic Europe?
After World War II, the core of Europe’s political system is to prevent charismatic authority from turning into dictatorship. How do they avoid this problem in China? In the aforementioned decision by the CPC, the word “democracy” appears 29 times, “leadership” 50 times, and “rule of law” 40 times. Meanwhile,“freedom” only shows up six times, and mainly in the chapter discussing economic issues. Compared with the core socialist values written in 24 Chinese characters, knowing the statistical numbers is easier and better for us to grasp the political preferences of the Chinese leadership. The restraint of “rule of law” is more important than “democracy,” but democracy is indispensable, and China’s authoritative “leadership” needs to be based on democracy and the rule of law. The CPCrefers to this as “from the masses, to the masses.”
The decision once again emphasized that “sovereignty lies with the people” and that the country is based on the alliance of workers and farmers. We all know that Western politicians tend to criticize China as a communist country, while Western scholars believethat China actually practices state capitalism, the worst form of capitalism.In this way, scholars try to persuade themself that there is nothing worth learning from China even though the country is far more efficient than Western countries. But does China actually practice state capitalism? Is the Chinese government a government packed with bigwigs? We have long known that none of China’s top leaders --i.e. members of the Standing Committee of the Politburo -- were born rich, and none of them were even descendants of the old members of the Standing Committee. Now, let’s take a look at the NPC deputies, I mean, who are they?
Of all the 2,987 deputies to the 12th National People’s Congress (2013-2018),workers and farmers from the front line accounted for 13.42% of the total, professional and technical personnel accounted for 20.42%, and cadres from the CPC and the government accounted for 34.88%. In addition, representatives of the People’s Liberation Army (including officers and soldiers) accounted for 9.3%, representatives of Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan accounted for 2.1%,and representatives of other democratic parties, non-party personages, along with religious, literary, and artistic groups accounted for 20.22%. Women accounted for 23.4% of the total, while ethnic minority representatives accounted for 13.69%.
Among the 2,980 deputies to the 13th National People’s Congress (2019-2024), workers and farmers from the front line accounted for 15.70% of the total, professional and technical personnel accounted for 20.57%, and cadres from the CPC and the government accounted for 33.93%. Women accounted for 24.9%, while ethnic minority representatives accounted for 13.69%.
This is really some different from the classical Marxist theory The number of intellectuals and members of other political parties even exceed that of workers and farmers. However, intellectuals are also seen as socialist workers in China. Some Chinese scholars hold the view that the CPC is a national party that inherits the Confucian traditions, and does not only represent a particular class or stratum. Other scholars emphasize the neutrality of the Chinese government -- being neutral among all classes, which is also reflected in the proportion of representatives. The CPC calls this“the three represents” (which means the CPC should always represent the requirements for developing China’s advanced productive forces, the orientation of China’s advanced culture, and the fundamental interests of the overwhelming majority of the Chinese people). And for President Xi Jinping, he puts a strong focus on cultivating and maintaining the advanced nature of the CPC itself. No matter which class you come from, once you become a party member, you must restrain yourself with the party’s ideology and discipline.
It is also mentioned in the decision that “the number of grassroots NPC deputies should be increased.”If we compare the composition of the deputies to the 12th and 13th National People’s Congress, we can see that cadres and government officials together accounted for less than 40%and have decreased a little bit. Meanwhile, workers from all over the country in different professions and with diverse backgroundsmake up the majority and their proportion has increased, not to mention that all 55 ethnic minorities have their own representatives. This makes it possible for representatives from all walks of life to be present when the deputies work together on any bill related to national welfare and the people’s livelihood.
Now if we look back atWestern representative democracy, I need not to point out how many of big brothers come from the top of the pyramid, and how many political leaders come from wealthy families. Plus, in the West we have the remarkable revolving door,which enables the unimpeded flow between the supreme legislature and the elite power club.
Comparison of the deputies to the 12th and 13th National People’s Congress
- 责任编辑: 吴立群
“生命之舟”司机：真想像电影一样，一次救下所有人 评论 115外交部：中美双方谈得很深很透 评论 537王毅：明确中方对中美关系的三条底线 评论 7643比4，许昕/刘诗雯获得奥运乒乓球混双银牌 评论 1004最新闻 Hot