Chinese political system better represents broad essence of democracy

Source:Global Times Published: 2014-5-19 19:13:01

For any ruling political party, it is vital to be united so as to maintain social order and stability. It is even more so for the Communist Party of China (CPC). Some 25 years have passed since the political backlash in Beijing, yet Chinese society has remained stable. Unity among the top leadership of the CPC has been an indispensable factor.

The CPC is not a party in the Western context. From a historical perspective, the CPC is the founder of modern China. It has played a role as a revolutionary party, a nation-building party and a ruling party at different political stages.

There was a political fight between the CPC and Kuomintang for dominance in the establishment process of modern China, yet it is different from party contention in the West. In this process, both parties defined themselves as representing the interests of all Chinese people. They were different from Western parties that only represented a particular group.

The Constitution of China illustrates the relationship between the CPC and modern China in the preface and stresses the CPC's core position in Chinese society. History over the past half century has proved that as long as the top leadership within the CPC can remain united, the country can overcome any hardships.

In the current international arena, the Western-style democratic elections are still being greatly endorsed and it is believed only multi-party elections can ensure good governance and are legitimate. But a striking contrast to China's rapid rise is that the Western world is being lost in political and economic crises.

It is difficult to understand China's social reality by applying theories of Western multi-party system and its legitimacy. The English word "party" originated from the Latin word "partiri," meaning "divide into parts." So party in the Western context means it doesn't represent the whole society but a particular part of society. As different parties stand for demands from different groups, no party can take rule for long.

The CPC has tried to unite the whole of the Chinese public within its political framework. China's history and the current situation determine that the politics of each political party representing different interests in the West does not apply to China.

Many China watchers believe that although China's one-party rule goes against the Western trend, it can guarantee swiftness and authority of the policies in their implementation process without entangling in democracy. It is true that the system of one-party rule and multi-party cooperation ensures prompt actions, but the above sayings intentionally separate the system from democracy, which is too simplistic.

The fundamental reason for China's success today is its political system is more democratic than Western ones. In essence, democracy is a mechanism in which the demands of the majority of people can be realized.

To put it simple, it is the political rule of the majority. It is true that Western countries have done better in promoting democratic procedures. But the establishment of Western democracy is based on the separation of politics and economy, which makes politics highly marginalized. China, a socialist country, views democracy as the basic social system. It tries to achieve democracy at the social level rather than being confined to the political scope. The CPC, representing over 1.3 billion population, has the obligation to meet the demands of the majority, which is the essence of democracy.

China has been ruled by the CPC since 1949, the single party so far. But it has adjusted its governance strategies and enlarged the scope of reforms extensively. It has also managed to correct flawed policies through endeavors. Compared with the alternation between the US' Republicans and Democrats or the UK's Labour and Conservatives, the CPC has made a great deal of adjustments.

China's one-party rule can be more confident than multi-party systems in delivering good governance.

The article was compiled by Global Times reporter Wang Wenwen based on an interview with Han Zhu, director of the Sinolizing Research Center and a research fellow with the Equinox Institute in Shanghai.

Posted in: Viewpoint

blog comments powered by Disqus