19th CPC National Congress proves popular hit

By Wu Bo Source:Global Times Published: 2017/10/23 18:23:39

Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China has gained popularity in China, whether in daily chats or on Chinese mainland social media like WeChat and Weibo. The most-discussed topics include what are the new propositions in President Xi Jinping's report, how many times applause occurred during the opening ceremony and what are the new trends for reform. People invariably feel that this heated discussion and interest in Congress is unique.

With regard to people's fascination with Congress, what first comes to our minds as Chinese is that this is closely related to the easy access and transmission of information brought about by the Internet. This analysis has a point, but a more important reason for this phenomenon is people's heartfelt appreciation and support for the Communist Party's hard practical work over the last five years.

People's full affirmation for the Party's work reflects their high evaluation of the overwhelming success of the anti-corruption campaign that will "comprehensively strengthen Party discipline" as put forth by Xi. By people's "affirmation" I mean their constant high recognition of the ruling status of the Communist Party of China. Although the anti-corruption situation remains severe and complicated, people can feel the strong self-discipline of the Party comrades, thus having great expectations for the overwhelming status and victory of the Party.

Of course, people's full affirmation of the Party also results from the great importance the Party has attached to ordinary people's livelihoods that ensures the protection and realization of people's interests. Karl Marx once said everything people strive for is closely related to their interests. The direct and concrete reason for people's concern for the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China is that they are concerned out of their own interest.

As politics has permeated into every aspect of ordinary people's lives, these two concerns can be linked. The Chinese people's political enthusiasm continued to rise in the past five years, not only for the self-purification campaign of the Party but also for the practical reforms taking place in China that brought people real and concrete benefits.

People's interest in Congress is not solely out of appreciation for the Party's efforts over the past five years, but also contains their expectations for the Party's work in the next five years or even longer. People want to know if their thoughts, hopes and wishes can be fulfilled in the report to Congress. They also want to know if their interests can be guarded and strengthened and in what other aspects they can gain a sense of satisfaction. It is to their delight that many new statements in the report have elicited positive responses to their questions.

People's interest also reflects the unique advantages of the current political system with Chinese characteristics which forms a sharp contrast to the downward evolution of Western political systems. Francis Fukuyama, who once proposed The End of History, now has to admit the decline of Western democracy in the face of the current global state of affairs. Western political crises have been exposed along with the financial crisis: Turnouts have dropped and politics has become vicious factional strife where candidates attack each other. All this farce has become the laughing stock of Western people.

In the West, voting campaigns are bustling whereas practical actions related to the interests of the people are rare. This proves again that private capital inevitably dispels all the positive meaning of democracy.

Patriotism is deeply rooted in the Chinese nation and the great practice of socialism in China will further motivate people's general concern for state affairs. In Western theory, modernization has the function of dispelling and weakening ideology and spirit.

From the Western perspective, the political enthusiasm of the Chinese people may be a paradox or exception to the theory. However, the emergence of this enthusiasm is the most normal thing in the revival of Chinese nation and the great cause of socialism for China.

The author is a research fellow at the Academy for Social Sciences Evaluation, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. opinion@globaltimes.com.cn

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