Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Voting without franchise

A bit of common sense wisdom asserts that democracy and capitalism are practically conjoined twins. Could it be that the Communist Party in China has given up too much power in their economic reforms?

Consumer Anxiety in China Undermines Government’s Economic Plans
Many young middle-class Chinese who grew up during the nation’s glittering boom years, when double-digit growth was the norm, are suddenly confronting the shadow of an economic slowdown, and even hints of austerity.

They are canceling vacations and delaying weddings and even selling recently purchased apartments to have cash on hand. Those who have lost money in the ongoing stock market crash are especially anxious.

Their angst poses dual problems for China’s leadership. The ruling party bases its legitimacy on delivering high rates of growth and employment. It also hopes to encourage consumer spending as a new engine of growth as the manufacturing sector slows and to nudge the economy away from an investment-driven model. Eroding confidence threatens both goals.

These days, Chinese are using the social media app WeChat to look for news and advice on the economy rather than the state news media, which, at the orders of the Communist Party’s propaganda department, have only had bare-bones reporting on the stock market crisis and the broader concerns over slowing economic growth…

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