Trying to get rid of surfing, wasted too much time, any suggestion?.......................... 七宗罪?............................... 1,没有原则的政治;2,不劳而获的财富;3,没有理智的享乐;4,没有特点的知识;5,没有道德的商业;6,没有人文关怀的科学;7,没有牺牲的崇拜。............................................. 虽然这是圣雄甘地说老印的.......

Sunday, October 16, 2005

China's uphill Battle of political reform at the village level.

While the media and public forum have paid a lot of attention to Taishi incident in China, the similar kind of election scandals at the village level is not difficult to find all over China. The intended democratic election at village level pushed by central government has been totally overwhelmed by the power of town officials who try their best to control the election. It is not to say those officials at town or county levels are all bad people. There is a deeper reason for this phenomenon: the outdated political structure of Chinese local government in rural area. Theoretically speaking, the elected village chief should report to his voters: peasants and protect them from being exploited and illegally taxed, while the designated town officials are responsible for supplying public goods, such as education, road maintenance and the local police forces. They also have to implement the policy and the law, such as family planning and collect the tax, for the central government. After the recent tax reform, they are also facing huge deficits. Summarize their current situations in two sentences: They have jobs to do. They don’t have money from upper level government to survive. Since then the town officials and their employees have formed a big interest group fighting for keeping their positions, benefits and salaries by exploiting peasants. After the village level election, there is still no way for elected village chiefs to align their goals and objectives with the ones of designated town and county officials. As a result, the town government has a very strong motivation to control the election, and facilitate their power which enables them to push the construction, education, family planning, and taxation and profit from these operations. The current chaotic situation happened in Taishi and Anrenfu is the direct consequence of the confliction of the different interests groups. The newest solution of the central government to this problem is to cut the excessive employees or entire town governments to avoid the heavy exploitation towards peasants. However the central government has never succeeded in the layoff battle of government employees. Zhu Rongji failed in the government reform of the urban districts and it seems that Wen Jiabao will fail in the reform of the rural districts as well. In the reform, it is very important to acknowledge the existence of different interest groups. How to make a reasonable compromise between different interest groups to facilitate the reform is an elegant art, if not a complicated political science. “You are fired” doesn’t work in China. A popular alternative solution suggested by experts is to transform the town government as a service station of the surrounding villages. Inside the service station, peasants can get cheap education, medical assistance, tool and machine repairs, law assistance, and business information. I think it is a very ideal picture and involve a massive reeducation and transformation of town officials and their employees. I will keep my eyes open and see what will happen next…


Post a Comment

<< Home