Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Monday, December 19, 2011

Say again?

It seemed like a typical press release from the Chinese government, but I read it anyway. When I finished I had to ask, "What was he talking about?"

Senior Chinese leader urges efforts to improve social management
Senior Chinese leader Zhou Yongkang has reiterated that more efforts should be made to promote social management in line with the socialist market-oriented economic system...

Zhou Yongkang, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, addresses a seminar on social management innovation attended by leaders from nine northern provinces and autonomous regions in Beijing, capital of China, Dec. 2, 2011.

While Zhou praised the efforts of local authorities to enhance social management, he said the current social management mechanism is not keeping pace with social and economic development, a failure particularly damaging to the market-oriented economy.

He urged delegates to innovate in social management by taking overall consideration and conducting systematic study of China's economic development, improving the well-being of the people and social stability.

He also reiterated the importance of improving social management by promoting practices nationwide derived from good community-level experience, adding that the community-level organs are make-or-break.

The job of improving social management should go deep in community-level organs, with increasing allocation of manpower and material resources, said Zhou.

It turns out that a later revision of the press release offered some hints about what "social management" is.

Senior Chinese leader calls for improved social management of prisoners, drug addicts, HIV carriers
Senior leader of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Zhou Yongkang has called for improved services and social management for prisoners, drug addicts, mental patients and HIV carriers.

Services for and management of these members of society are critical to social stability and harmony, said Zhou, who is a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee.

Despite notable progress, blind spots, management loopholes and potential safety hazards remain, Zhou said at a conference Monday.

Zhou advocates an approach that combines both education and assistance in an effort to ensure these people observe law and discipline, and to "live in harmony with society."

Zhou also underlined the importance of showing due respect to these groups and protecting their legitimate interests…

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