The views expressed in any article published in this blog are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Joseph Foster or Bob Lupoli.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

China's Legal Apartheid or Modern Feudalism

Joe: I am nearly finished reading this excellent book. China scholars are often exploring the subject of income inequality between the urban dwellers and the rural areas in China. Sorman spends a good part of his book on constrasting these two worlds within China and even goes so far as to call it “legal apartheid” – see the YouTube video below. I have read other books and writing that refer to this system as modern feudalism – this makes a little more sense to me because it invokes the historical reality of China.

Feudalism: ...a system for ordering society around relationships derived from the holding of land in exchange for service or labor. The Chinese Communist Party - owns the land and definately promotes rural labor's movement into cities but does not give them same rights as city dwellers for education, healthcare, etc.
Either term is very negative and I believe – very true. –Bob Review & Information
Empire of Lies: The Truth about China in the Twenty-First Century
Guy Sorman gives a human face to brutal oppression in today's China. He introduces us to the daily suffering of many individual human lives: students thrown into exile for signing their names to political leaflets, pregnant women beaten for being pregnant without the authorization of the state, peasant families enduring the long, slow sufferings of AIDS brought to them by unsanitary blood transfusions in public clinics. Sorman has long been a promoter of a realistic form of democracy in China and of a "barefoot capitalism" that would begin to diminish the huge number of those who suffer. -- Michael Novak

From the Back Cover: In political philosophy, a whole generation of French thinkers like Revel, Jean-Marie Benoit, and Guy Sorman are rejecting the old clich├ęs about state power and rediscovering the danger such power poses to personal freedom. -Ronald Reagan

Product Description
The Western press these days is full of stories on China’s arrival as a superpower, some even warning that the future may belong to her. Western political and business delegations stream into Beijing, confident in China’s economy, which continues to grow rapidly. Crowning China’s new status, Beijing will host the 2008 Olympic Games.
But as Guy Sorman reveals in Empire of Lies China’s success is, at least in part, a mirage. True, 200 million of her subjects, those fortunate enough to be working in an expanding global market, enjoy a middle-class standard of living. The remaining one billion, however, are among the poorest, most exploited people in the world. Popular discontent simmers, especially in the countryside, where it often flares into violent confrontation with Communist Party authorities. In truth, China’s economic “miracle” is rotting from within.

In this extraordinary book, Sorman explains how the West has conferred greater legitimacy on China than do the Chinese themselves. He has visited the country regularly for forty years and spent most of the past three years exploring her teeming cities and remotest corners. Empire of Lies is the culmination of these travels and perhaps the only book on China that lets the Chinese people speak for themselves.

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