Xi Jinping appears to have consolidated virtually absolute power in China. From Eric Margolis at lewrockwell.com:
‘Guard against arrogance. For anyone in a leading position, this is a matter of principle and an important condition for maintaining unity. Even those who have made no serious mistakes and have achieved very great success in their work should not be arrogant.’
Chairman Mao Zedong’s Little Red Book
China was blessed by two great leaders in the 20th century. Mao Zedong created modern China out of the wreckage of a nation devastated by war, western and Japanese imperialism, ferocious poverty and lack of national spirit. ‘Great Helmsman’ Mao made catastrophic mistakes that killed millions and was dotty at the end, but he put modern China on the path to greatness.
Clever, crafty, deeply wise Deng Xiaoping took the inchoate mass of China and laid the groundwork from 1978-1989 for his nation’s miraculous transformation from dire poverty into the world’s second largest economy and newest great power. The only title the great Deng held was Chairman of the Chinese Bridge Association. He didn’t need titles or fanfare: everyone knew he was the boss. Deng urged China to discreetly grow rich and strong while keeping its head down so as not to alarm the outside world.
I saw much of this happen from the mid-1970’s when I began exploring China, which was then still in the final stages of the crazy Cultural Revolution. To my wonder, I saw the new city of Shenzhen rise from rice patties into a booming metropolis of 11 million, one of the world’s fastest growing cities. The magical transformation of China continues to leave me awestruck.
After Mao and Deng, China’s collective Communist leadership imposed rules limiting party leaders to two five-year terms. The Communist Party heeded philosopher Vilfredo Pareto’s warnings in his ‘circulation of elites’ that to preserve itself, an elite group had to allow new members from below to join. Collective leadership was intended to end or at least lessen the murderous power struggles that, with regionalism and separatism, had cursed China for centuries.
To continue reading: Xi Jinping – `L’état C’est Moi’