Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Civil Society with Chinese characteristics

During the Cultural Revolution, kindergarteners sang the praises of Comrade Lei Feng. He appeared on posters everywhere. Workers and soldiers learned about his selfless devotion to "serve the people."

‪Follow Lei Feng's example
Every once in awhile, political leaders remind people to be more concerned about civic good than private goals. Observers in China note rolling of eyes and big yawns in response to those statements.

President Xi is on the Lei Feng kick again. I noted that Xi aimed his appeal at "China's working class" and not its nouveau riche. Is that part of socialism with Chinese characteristics?

Xi urges volunteers to learn from Lei Feng
Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday called for "concrete actions" by the country's volunteers in learning from the spirit of Lei Feng, the nation's most famous Good Samaritan…

Xi encouraged [people] to "practice the socialist core values" and "write new stories pertinent to Lei's spirit with concrete actions."

"Everyone can learn from Lei's spirit, and people can show their concern and love everywhere," Xi said in the reply.

The President called on people to lend a helping hand and do their part for the needy, saying it would help to "make society better."

China's working class should serve as an example for society in "learning from Lei Feng" and "fostering a healthy ethos" so as to allow Lei's spirit to prevail in the country, he said.

Xi also expressed respect to volunteers and people nationwide ahead of "Lei Feng's Day," which falls on March 5.

Lei, a young Chinese soldier in the 1960s, is known for devoting almost all of his spare time and money to selflessly helping the needy. He died after being hit by a falling pole while helping a fellow soldier direct a truck on Aug. 15, 1962.

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Just The Facts! Just the ticket for reviewing for the big exam.

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