Chinese too busy trying to get rich, no time for human rights.

Discussion in 'Economics' started by MohdSalleh, Nov 11, 2010.


    By Jeremy Warner Economics Last updated: November 9th, 2010

    You don’t need to go far back in Western history to find similarly intolerant attitudes to political opposition, and as for the human rights agenda, well that’s a very recent addition indeed. As pointed out by the historian Michael Burleigh in his column for Standpoint magazine, the human rights industry really only started to gain traction from the 1970s onwards.

    China has always put ideas of the collective good above those of individual liberty, and is therefore from an entirely different cultural tradition to that of Thomas Paine, the French revolutionaries, and the rights of man. Attempts to impose Western models and ideals on the Chinese political class are therefore not just futile, they are are culturally insulting.

    I’m not seriously arguing against western libertarianism, but some might think, looking at the country’s relative lack of crime, that the Chinese system has much to commend it. The most important thing to understand about modern China, one eminent expert once told me, is that all actions of policy, justice and administration are wholly focused on just one goal – maintaining the Communist Party elite in power.

    This gives the system a strange kind of democratic accountability. As long as the CCP keeps delivering, it will continue to command popular support and is therefore safe. Officials know that the moment they fail, their end will by nasty, brutish and short. For the moment, there is little if any appetite in China for Tiananmen Square type protest. The Chinese are too busy trying to get rich to worry about human rights.


    Ultimately,"it's the economy,stupid."

    Can democracy only be compatible with "individual human rights"? The West with its financial superiority over the last 200-300 yrs has exported this to the rest of the world but now the world is changing. Perhaps in time to come, the Chinese with a different cultural bent will export "common rights."
  2. mahadiga


    1. Imports goods from China.
    2. Refurbish those goods and export them back to China.