10/06/2010, 00.00
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For Wei Jingsheng, only democracy in China can stop the war over the yuan

by Wei Jingsheng
China is less a socialist nation than a throwback to a feudal regime based on serfdom. The mainland has never been socialist; democratic nations are socialist because they take care of their people and do not empower a small cohort of capitalists as Beijing is doing. Sadly, this path will lead to wars, poverty and uprisings. We must turn around China’s reckless economic development.

Washington (AsiaNews) – We have talked about the Sino-US trade imbalance.  It not only damages the interests of the United States, causing the economic crisis in recent years; but also greatly harms the interests of the Chinese working class, meanwhile limiting the development of the Chinese market.  It hampers China's own economic development, leaving China's economy in an unreasonable deformed state.

On the one hand, China's industrial processing capacity greatly exceeds the need of the Chinese market, which is under-developed.  Sales of Chinese industrial products has to rely on the U.S. market, and, in this state, economic growth has to rely on the U.S. market.  On the other hand, the Chinese government and big businesses of both China and the U.S. control international trade.  In order to maintain the market gap between the two countries and maintain cheap labour, China cannot provide a related balanced market share, resulting in the huge U.S. trade deficit year after year and this economic crisis.

Some will say that this phenomenon is inevitable.  In the past, Japan and other countries also travelled the same path in order to develop.  Half of these words are right:  the Japanese did take this development strategy back then, and indeed rapidly accumulated large amounts of capital for the large Japanese financial consortia.  However, as the Americans could not stand the exploitation of the U.S. market by Japan, Japanese society could not tolerate wealth and power increasingly concentrated in a few hands while people were still in poverty.  Starting from the nineteen seventies, the Japanese gradually changed the development strategy by expanding their domestic market, walking towards a normal path of a balanced development.

Today, Japan and Germany are still countries with foreign trade surpluses, but their surpluses in proportion to foreign trade volume are not so high.  And, their people's incomes are also normal when compared with other countries such as the United States and other European countries.  This evaluation shows that their surpluses are due to the advantages of technology and management, which are the normal, legitimate advantages.  Their development is sustainable.  In other words, economic development leads to the well being of the people, not just to the profit of a small number of capitalists.  Technically, the European and Japanese models should not be called capitalism; truly, they are the real socialism.  It is only because the reputation of the word socialism has been spoiled by the former Soviet Union and the Communist Party of China, that Americans do not want get stained by this reputation.

In comparison, China and the Soviet Union claimed to be socialist, even to the degree one could be executed if you were against this socialism; yet, their Communist systems were never systems of socialism.  The early implementation of the Soviet system was a mixture of state capitalism and feudal serfdom.  The country owned all the production capital.  Since its production activities had the main purpose of the growth of the national capital, it should be called state capitalism.  Their management of the people was a statewide feudal serfdom.  People were only the serfs of the Communist Party at all levels.  Their consumption was distributed by the serf owners, without personal freedom or economic and political rights.  If this system were also called socialism, I would only say that it is a feudal socialism, "the highest development stage" of the feudal serfdom.

After the complete fall of feudal socialism in China, a group of Chinese Communists represented by Deng Xiaoping had to reform and open up the country for economic development.  Otherwise, as a society with a commodity economy since ancient times, China could become the first country to overthrow feudal socialism.  That is because in China's traditional culture it is difficult to change freedmen into serfs, and it is difficult to accept an establishment of feudal socialism based on historical European serfdom.  Therefore, Deng Xiaoping's choice to take the capitalist road won unanimous support across the country.  People thought that Deng Xiaoping and the Chinese Communist Party would follow the traditional system, or the more advanced modern Western system.  Deng Xiaoping's slogan of willing people's support was modernization.

However, Deng Xiaoping was really taking the road of capitalism, or to be exact, the earlier form of pure capitalism, which had already proven to be a failure.  Its objective of development took capital accumulation as the ultimate standard.  To reduce forcefully the value of the domestic currency and drive down the price of labour, to use the normal international market price for excess profits, became the essential national policy for the Communist clique under Deng Xiaoping.  This policy was "the last word"-- who dared to oppose it would be buried, even for the Secretary-General of the Communist Party.

This national policy of pure capitalism cannot be achieved in a democratic system.  Its necessary conditions are to suppress the opposition of the workers and meanwhile control finance by making unfair price differences.  These conditions are difficult to achieve in a democracy.  Therefore, this pure capitalism of the Communist Party is what the capitalists of the world love most.  Only now, these capitalists have discovered that the Chinese Communist Party is more suitable for capitalism than the Nazis and the feudal monarchs.  The Communist Party is their natural ally.  That is why the Chinese Communist Party also has timely published its theory of Three Representatives (one of them was the capitalists).  They must publicly declare themselves representing the interests on behalf of the capitalists, or else they would lose their main social base.  Besides these capitalists and fools who have water in their brains, who would support a regime that would exploit people across the country?

However, this pure capitalist road proved to be a dead end even more than 200 years ago.  Democratic politics and socialist theory were only built up after that proof.  This pure capitalism only takes care of the minority interests instead of the majority.  In making a small portion of people better off, it produced poverty for the majority.  Such capitalism could make economic development achieve the highest speed, yet the huge gap between rich and poor results in social consumption lagging far behind the growth of production capacity.  The imbalance of production and consumption is the modern day reason for economic crisis and wars against foreign countries, as well as the modern day reason for internal revolution.

In order to suppress the tendency of capitalist extremism under the market economy, people invented socialist economic policies under the protection of a democratic system to maintain the balance between production and consumption.  This form of socialism (also called "regulation") is the modern human invention in an effort to avoid economic crisis, foreign wars, and internal revolutions.  For China to walk on the path of sustainable development, for the Chinese people to be able to share the fruits of economic development, we must not just let a few capitalists dominate the regime.  We must take the road to democracy.  Real modernization, including economic, technological, all other modernization, has its premise in democratization.  For centuries now, the experience of history has proved that without a democratic economy and development of technology, we will not have a modern life; instead, we will have the gap between rich and poor, market shortages, revolution, or external war.  In short, people will be suffering, instead of being happy.

Chinese Communists have already brought this kind of suffering to the Western democratic society.  The U.S. Congress is taking measures to pass legislation to curb this adverse current.  We the Chinese should also do our own share for our own development and happiness, for this is an affair of our own.

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