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Xu Zhangrun: Prevent China from slipping into the "Putin-style governance model"

Source of information: Time: 2020-02-21 02:37:42

Millennium Tongzhou vitality north stream

Xu Zhangrun is a professor and doctoral supervisor of Tsinghua University Law School. His main research fields are jurisprudence, western method philosophy, constitutional government theory, and Confucian humanism and law. It is one of the representatives of classical liberalism in the new period. Representative works include a collection of essays "Waiting for Tianming".
[Editor's note] China's modern transformation has come to this day. It has been a long journey, and it has been more than a century and a half. It has not yet been completed and is pending. At this moment, looking forward and backward, it seems to be jelly-like and tug-shaped, giving people anxiety about retreating. When it is urgently necessary to carry forward the situation, it is worth a new round of adjustment cycles in European and American politics. The originally familiar meaning system and world structure seem to be suddenly facing restructuring. Therefore, on top of this worry, it is superimposed whether the "period of strategic opportunities in China" still has this sense of crisis.
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01 Politics has not yet been completed, and the moral motive for political reform is as follows
China's transformation for more than a century is a self-adjustment in response to the Mediterranean and Atlantic civilizations. While embracing modern civilization into its arms, it is diligently building a "modern China." In other words, this is a process of civilized transformation aimed at the political establishment of the country, and it is also a great cause for the founding of the country in the era of civilized transformation. The founder is not him. It is a modern nation that takes the bottom of Chinese civilization and integrates modern civilization into the backbone. It integrates "nation-state-cultural China" and "democracy-political China". Here, deconstructing the imperial dynasty politics, transplanting the form of modern government, focusing on the rooting of this government and its Chinese-style growth, and the generalization of "constitutional democracy, the people's republic" is the return of modern Chinese history in late Qing Main theme.
It is here that although the state of China ’s existing government is in what form it is in, and at what stage in the process of establishing a state and a government, the in-laws say differently, but the test of politics and governance is based on the source of power and the allocation of power. The aspirational realm as defined by "modern politics", "Constitutional Democracy, People's Republic," has not yet been achieved. On the one hand, the interest motive that drives reform has been exhausted and has no driving force; on the other hand, the interest motive that solidifies the interest structure is too powerful to shake. Therefore, the moral motives of the reform need to be activated at this moment, but the moral motives are just as absent. The shortcomings of the Chinese civilization's conscious self-examination of the fate of the nation are worrying.
At the moment, there is no shortage of calls in the intellectual circles and the system to promote political reform. The currents of ideas are flowing and noisy, while the moral motivation of the existing system to introduce reforms is insufficient. Leninist political ideas have even revived. The biggest challenge facing China in this wave of transition. To be honest, at this step, I am afraid that no one has thought of it, but he must crack it and move forward.
Here, the lack of overall political rationality and the debilitating state spirit will not be more serious with the further development of the economy and the continuous improvement of the lives of the general public. Of course, vigilance is needed. However, what is even more vigilant is that if the economy continues to decline, incomes will decline, and the surrounding environment will continue to deteriorate, not only will it fail to force the determination to improve the political system, but it will lead us back to the unknown. If that's the case, there is no sorrow.
02 Be wary of deviating from the normal political track and pulling China into the combat readiness system in the arms race
China's growth and the rejuvenation of its civilization, and its externalities have developed to this stage. Objectively, it needs a global layout to create strategic depth in resources, funds, technology, markets, and labor. The "Belt and Road" initiative has a two-pronged approach to sea rights and land rights, activating the "world island" and anti-sea rights encroachment, as necessary. If China still has politics and political will at the moment, this is the highlight. However, on the other hand, as the front is stretched, many vested interests are touched, and even the existing system is directly challenged, the pressure on the periphery will inevitably increase. In this regard, China will be dragged into the combat readiness system, delaying the improvement of people's livelihood and diversion of human and material resources in the progress of science and education in a high degree of tension, and special vigilance is needed.
When the newly-built warship sailed to the sea "like dumplings", it was heroic and heroic, considering the bearing capacity of China's existing national strength, balancing the relationship between strategic expansion and preventing national overdrafts, especially to prevent strategic overdrafts from forcing huge expenses. The possibility of superimposing a "combat readiness system" on top of the "maintaining stability system" is a must. Once such a dual system is formed, not only will there be a major adjustment in the distribution of national wealth, but it will also inevitably mean a shift in the overall national policy. For the growing big country and China in the process of civilization restoration, will it escape modern times as a result? The dominant political will and historical trajectory of Chinese history, "before you die before you succeed," also need to be carefully examined.
In other words, as mentioned earlier, the main purpose of the modern Chinese historical process is to establish the country through politics. To this end, it is necessary to spend abnormal political periods and build a life order under normal politics. It must be seen that although there is a century-long transition period, China is still in a very political period and has not yet come out of this historical danger. Regarding this, if you look at it through the large historical telescope, the meaning is naturally self-explanatory, so there will be so many "uncertainties", and even the society that has spread over the past two years has threatened everyone. Psychological phenomenon. Here, no matter whether it is left, right, right, or neo-liberalism or Confucian constitutionalism, for the peaceful coexistence of all citizens, it is the symbol of normal politics and the goal of political nation-building.
For this reason, in the existing world system, try to avoid its sharp edges and create a relatively favorable international situation, which should be the meaning of the same topic. It is here that the grassroots Mao Zuo and the left-right dispute within the system, the left and right irritated each other without reason, as if leading to the emergence of a "comprehensive civil war" state, it is incredible. After all, so far, the vastness of China has yet to be integrated into an organic political community and a legal community, and the civilized community is used to end political differences, and premature tearing and ideological retreat are exactly the opposite of this.
03 Weak cultural originality, highlighting the need to enhance China's ideological strength and to lift the national morality
In the last thirty years, in the 1980s after the Third Plenary Session of the Eleventh Central Committee, after a long period of depression, there was a short period of active thought. In the past ten years, knowledge has grown significantly, and academic assignments have improved in both quality. The Third Plenary Session of the Eighteenth Central Committee proposed a reform package of 60 major items and 360 small items. The explanations of the Fourth Plenary Session of 2014 and the Fifth Plenary Session of the following year on building a country ruled by law and a modern system of national governance are all such ideas and knowledge. The result is also a positive demonstration of China's improvement of soft power in improving the country's construction and refining political rationality. On the other hand, with the growing jaw in the past two years, the driving force of thought and the original spirit of civilization have actually weakened. The more they are blocked, the more they feel depressed, so whether the Chinese thought and the supply of Chinese civilization can be provided. Supporting the pace of growth of large countries and meeting the requirements of the closing period of the Great Transformation has shown a tight side.
In this day-to-day trend, knowledge-based technical operations may continue, but theoretical discussions and ideological creation are bound to become increasingly pale. The negative effects of such mental decline and mental weakness will not be immediately apparent, but there will be an accumulation process, but once it is a given fact, it is not something that can be reversed in three or five years, or even one or two generations. Yes, it is a disaster. In view of this, we maintain a limited and open-minded ideological situation, and maintain active interaction with other civilizations without further contraction and suppression. This is the right path, and where to go from here is a test of political sincerity and mental capacity inside and outside the system.
04 Chinese Civilization Renaissance and Prevention of the Empire Complex
China has returned to the ranks of a great power, and the Chinese civilization is gradually rejuvenating. After a century and a half of hardships, in these years, it has accumulated for a long time, its momentum is particularly fierce, and public opinion in the world has responded. As ordinary citizens, we also travel abroad, responding and responding. Neighboring countries, including those in Southeast Asia, definitely feel stronger. Just at this time, from the Ottoman Turkey to the former Tsarist Russia today and the United States of America today, it seems that the plots of the old and new empires are on the rise, especially the Ottoman complex.
The Russian President has publicly declared that Russia's borders have no end, and the interest lies in the borders. This kind of naked tsarist-Stalinist expansionism has caused the surrounding small countries and European public opinion to ferment and make sense. Possibly, from the perspective of external observers, China ’s renaissance also means the return of the empire. In this regard, Russia should be used as a reminder to remind itself at all times, and to return to the ranks of the great powers peacefully as an image of a responsible country, demonstrating China ’s national morals. China's national positioning in the global system.
At present, small neighboring countries and other countries seem to take precautions against China's return to the ranks of the great powers and the rejuvenation of civilization. For fear of the outbreak of the Chinese empire, they secretly and inextricably coexist, so they hope to keep the United States in the Western Pacific. Military and political existence. Indeed, in modern times, China has been constructing its own legal and political identity as a "nation-state," and has shown the possibility of moving towards a "democratic state." Over the past few decades, it has shown its commitment to the existing world system in "international standards". respect. However, the grass-roots class keeps on “everyone who commits a crime against the strong Han”, which shows that with the improvement of life and the improvement of national strength, folk patriotism can easily ferment and expand into an empire plot. This not only exists in the mass psychology, but also spreads to some intellectual elite consciousness.
Nevertheless, in my observation, this non-national holistic phenomenon requires a clear distinction between the grandeur of the great power and the complex of the empire, and the neutralization of the two phases also requires recourse to the enlightenment and political wisdom of modern civilization. This time, the Chinese and Korean officials and the Chinese people focused on "Sad" and aimed at "Rakuten". The Chinese intellectual community has shown a ruthless rationality from the beginning and has played a role in correcting it. It is a sign that China's mind is gradually becoming mature. awesome.
05 Universal participation requirements and prevention of national capacity diversion
In China today, both inside and outside the party, while in the opposition, there is widespread enthusiasm for participation and the momentum is surging. Not only did the intellectual community have such a call, but it manifested itself in the theoretical planning and moral calling of democratic politics, and the general public also participated in the appeal, and hesitated to let it go. Affected areas, including community property management at the micro-life level, also have a problem of universal participation. Insufficient participation and the limited supply of democracy have led to a deficit in participation.
As the gap between the rich and the poor has become increasingly apparent, the participation deficit has been overlaid with a dignity deficit, which has led to widespread dissatisfaction. This is an objective fact. It is a national and national condition. There is no need to conceal it, nor should it be concealed. Therefore, how to meet the requirements of universal participation, and at the same time prevent the sudden outbreak of participatory actions under the shock of democratic thoughts due to the insufficient supply of democracy, and the danger of the country ’s political capacity and governance structure being scattered overnight under the impact, consider China ’s strategic opportunity period today. , We must be cautious and take it seriously.
In the past, Huntington has given hints that the practice of many emerging democracies has also proven that when democratic politics were early, explosive participation may lead to disorder. That is to say, when the demand for political participation of citizens has exploded, existing institutions have not yet established any participation mechanism, and it will inevitably lead to "institutional overload". A certain range and degree of political turmoil and even political collapse are inevitable . In the case of China, the political system under the stability maintenance system lacks looseness and vitality, and has no sincerity in the possible and inevitable political participation. It has not seriously conceived any plans, and the political participation has been backlogged for a long time. The scale may show an explosive way in the next few years. It is inevitable to cope with riots and violence. However, once it happens, the situation is embarrassing.
Therefore, blindly refused to participate, and there was no one day when the public participation in the wave really hit the shore any idea and plan, it can not be suppressed, the wave surged, the results are not difficult to imagine. It would be even worse if it was dealt with by machine guns. At that time, even public goods such as law and order and peace could hardly be guaranteed. What period of strategic opportunity is not a period of opportunity. Therefore, as far as the "China's strategic opportunity period" is concerned, at this moment, it is time to seriously think about reducing the participation deficit and dignity deficit, and plan the participation plan for large-scale arrival after all.
06 Balance of Great Power Responsibility and Self-Positioning of Developing Countries
As China gradually fulfills its status as a great power, it objectively requires that it exercise its powers, assume its responsibilities, and even assume the responsibilities of a superpower in the future. The former mainly leads to the interaction between big country diplomacy and big country, while the latter involves more relations with small and medium-sized countries. I am in a hurry. As a big country, I have to be the boss when necessary. After all, in the carved world, the treaty system and the hegemonic system coexist, and they are united to maintain this world system. Therefore, whether it is the global boss or the regional boss, all bosses have to fulfill their responsibilities and pay for the money, and first of all, the responsibility of providing public goods such as regional order or global order.
Fortunately, China has been the boss of East Asia and the nations of the world history since ancient times. There is no shortage of such civilizational memories and political feelings. The problem is that today's world is not the era of the classical Chinese world, nor can it be dealt with by the Zong Fan Yiyi means. Therefore, how to dispatch our own strength and serve real profits within the scope permitted by the existing national strength, rather than diligently in French-style flashy politics, is the transition period from "hiding our strengths" to "making a difference", and we need to be careful. Take it easy.
Take the Korean peninsula as an example. He could n’t cover the Jin family, and he could n’t control his hands and feet. As a result, the gimmicks were blind and everyone was not safe. The first thing is to disrupt China ’s strategic layout and disrupt China ’s growth process. Do n’t blame others for it. Already. From the current point of view, China has lost a lot of points here. Destroying China-ROK relations, which was difficult to cultivate, is equivalent to helping the US-Japan-ROK military alliance, and finally realizing the large-scale armed existence of the US emperor.
With the internal adjustment of Europe and the United States, especially in the next few years, the United States may become more introverted and accompanied by the symptoms of impatience, irritation, and shamelessness during the decline of the great powers. The strategic space that China needs to fill may increase. Then, when the big country is moving towards a global big country, how to do business step by step, especially not to be arrogant or arrogant, can it really mean that China's political wisdom and national rationality have arrived.
07 Prevent China from slipping into Putin-style elections
Putin-style governance is just like Bismarck-style governance of the prime minister in the past. It is guided by strong manpower, maintained by terror, suffocates the society, surrounds aliens, and ends up being "one strong and one weak." Once the leading strong body is no longer, the nation whose spine was interrupted by the strongman suddenly loses contact, loses weight quickly, loses ground, and eventually collapses. In addition, strong men are human beings, and they have inherent limitations. At this moment, they have grown up, inflated their selfish power, arrogant power, and no longer controlled. The mental balance was lost in Wei Wei Nuo Nuo's confession, so that he was stunned, but still complacent and unknown. On the surface, it is bright and muscular, but in reality, it is impossible to escape the power spell.
Of course, at the time of the great transformation, all parties shouted, objectively need a core of leadership and outstanding leaders, Yu Qiang willed to kill the bleeding path. However, even if this is the case, it must be done at the cost of sacrificing social vitality, the strength of folk thought, the free expression of spirit, and the pluralistic development of national wisdom. Otherwise, the whole country will be weak and mentally vulnerable. After all, in this age of turmoil, there are all kinds of entanglements and all kinds of endlessness. With only one brain, how can it be comprehensive, in fact, it can't cope with it at all.
Twenty years ago, Putin took office and vowed, "Give me twenty years and give you a strong Russia." Time flies, and in a blink of an eye, today the total population of Russia has not risen but has fallen, with a net decrease of more than 10 million, and GDP has been cut from 2.8 trillion US dollars to 140 million. What's more, the average life expectancy of the people, especially the average life expectancy of men, has actually fallen to the lowest value in a century of peace, which is unexpected. In a sense, it just shows the evil consequences of being strong.
On March 26, 2017 local time, large-scale anti-corruption marches broke out in several cities in Russia, pointing directly at Putin and Medvedev, and even shouted the slogan "Russia does not need Putin" on the Red Square in Moscow. About 500 people were arrested by the police during the march.
In the past two years, a crescent-shaped strongman political region emerged from the two sides of the Brubrose Strait, all the way east, through Central Asia, to the Korean Peninsula, and further south to the Philippine Sea. Each took a box gun and lighted his muscles one after another, indicating that after the world's balance of power was broken, the pattern was reorganizing, and the world was rushing, so calmly no longer, goodness disappeared, rough ideas came into being, and brute force politics began to be arrogant and ready to move. In this regard, China's strategic opportunity period is still in the air, but time is running out.
Saying ten thousand words and ten thousand words, summing up the above seven points, what I want to say is that, in a large probability, the next ten years will still be a strategic opportunity period for China's development, depending on whether it can be grasped. The most important thing is to prevent China from slipping into the trap of "Putin-style governance model". It is based on limited electoral politics and normal constitutional government. It cultivates attachments based on personal worship, privatizes political parties, incites the people with fundamental culture, religious sentiment, and nationalism, manipulates politics and the media to ensure a permanent monopoly on power. Thus, it is not unobtrusive to realize the blatant capture of national wealth by the ruling clique. The so-called "sovereign democracy" advocated by it deliberately evades the definition of true legislators, so that politicians and officials occupying important positions, private wealth circles, "people with deep backgrounds", in short, all their own family members realize naked and private interests. At the same time, there is no need to assume any political responsibility.
To this end, the suppression of the opposition is even achieved through physical destruction, and the opponent's assets are seized through political oppression to transfuse the established system. In this case, the rule of law that it advertises has disappeared, fear has spread in the political field, and unrest has become a social norm. In short, this "electoral authoritarianism" of Putin Russia has led to internal conflicts, nepotism, and widespread corruption in the internal affairs. In the global system, it is brave and fierce, putting the country at the risk of a serious rivalry between the enemy and ourselves. Therefore, both in terms of national rationality and citizen rationality, it is not a blessing to the Russian nation and all its citizens, and it is self-evident. Putin will continue, and the president will become 10,000 years, and the Russian nation will be in trouble.
(This article is a speech delivered by Professor Xu Zhangrun at the Symposium on China's Strategic Opportunities at the School of Economics and Management of Tsinghua University on March 12, 2017.)

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