Monthly Archives: 十一月 2008

hundred flower movement

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Democratic element in Hundred Flower Movement and How far it went?

  Let a hundred flowers bloom, let a hundred schools contend.

                                       —-Mao Tse-Tung, May 2nd, 1956

  Hundred Flower Movement is the campaign who has the most beautiful and mild name in history of China. It gave the intellectuals, especially non-party members a feeling of Early Spring(

About democracy

Western democracy and Mao’s democracy

Western democracy definition:

An ancient political term meaning government by the people-in classical Athens where the word originated, rule by the demos. In current usage, it can refer to popular government or popular sovereignty, to representative government as well as direct participatory government, and even ( not quite correctly) to republican or constitutional government, that is to say, government by law. (David Miller “The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Political Thought” Oxford publishing services, Oxford)

Mao’s democracy:

Mao Zedong never gave a clear definition of democracy. We can only sense democracy in the quotations of him. Below are some important quotes of Mao on democracy, especially on big democracy and small democracy:

a)      In history, every democratic movement in large scale is used to fight against class enemy.( 1]毛泽东文集:第7卷[M.北京:人民出版社,1999. p161)

b)      Big democracy is used to deal with class economy, while the small democracy  is for solving problems within the people.( 1]毛泽东文集:第7卷[M.北京:人民出版社,1999. p160)

That is to say, no matter whether it is big democracy or small democracy, the common purposes are for the development of socialist democracy and to consolidate the dictatorship of people.

As democracy in western world is a core value which has some standard, in Mao’s mind, democracy is nothing but a tool for class struggle.

      What the two democracies share in common depends on how Mao discoursed his democracy and the situation in contemporary China. By government by people, Mao would say people were the master of the country and there was proletarian dictatorship. Defending for popular or representative government, Mao would say the government was based on the mass and represent the people’s interests. The Constitution promulgated in 1954 was a strong support that China indeed was a country governed by law. The only problem lied in the direct participation of the people. Will Hundred Flower Movement solve the embarrassment of Mao if he was questioned about this character in democracy in Western concept?

 

The reason of Hundred Flower Movement

·        In the 8th CCP Party Congress, the success of socialist transformation was declared, the main contradiction was no longer between the proletariat and the capitalists, rather it was between the need of people for fast economic and cultural development and the reality. That is one of the reasons Mao Zedong was confident to allow intellectuals to speak more freely their mind and criticize the government.

·        Bureaucracy and corruption in the CCP party created distance and tension between the people and the officials, which was clearly described in the passage of Wang Meng: a young man in the ministry of Organization. Mao realized the problem and hoped to eliminate bureaucracy, subjectivism and factionalism by small democracy, which contained criticism and self-criticism and which was mild and targeted to people but not the enemy.

·        1956 Hungary and Poland Revolt made the party be aware of the danger of collapse of socialism countries with Communist Party. To eliminate the potential dangerous enemy, Mao would like to use the strategy to exposure the enemy and then eliminate them. He had excuses to do so as well: if someone uses big democracy to go against socialism, let us use proletarian dictatorship to deal with them!

·        De-Stalinisation

1956 saw the Twentieth Congress of the CPSU, Khrushchev’s secret speech denouncing Stalin, shining light on democracy and liberalism, vibrated the world, especially in the communist countries like China. The policy-makers in China confirmed that break the existing Soviet Union model and began to explore Chinese way to communism. Disappointed by Stalin, Mao decided to try his new method—as a beginning, Hundred Flower Movement.

 

In the context of stable domestic in which hidden danger was felt by the party members and the international background which gave a strong signal to Mao some actions should to taken , it was time to hear the voice from the Non-party intellectuals. Is it a call for democracy, or is it just a “have-to-do” movement?

  

 

l What was the purpose and principal of Hundred Flower Movement?

In May 1956, Mao tried to encourage greater initiative in the cultural sphere with the slogan “let a hundred flowers bloom, let a hundred schools contend.” Inspired by Taoism, Mao used this slogan to flourish ideas and thoughts in order to fight against bureaucracy, subjectivity and sectarianism. In general for all intellectual activity the prescription was: the aim of converting all to Marxism-Leninism stands, but for the moment non-Marxist ideas can be held and propagated so long as they do not mean active counter-revolutionary activity. ( Roderick MacFarquhar, “ The Hundred Flowers Campaign and the Chinese Intellectuals” New York). At the beginning of the campaign, many intellectuals were cautious after the mental batterings and bitter memory of “ the case of Hu Feng” (original name  Zhang Mingzhen , also called  Zhang Guangren  Chinese literary theorist and critic who followed Marxist theory in political and social matters but not in literature. in the early 1950s, Hu Feng was subjected to a campaign of criticism for the emphasis he placed on the subjective nature of creative writing. Ultimately, his views were condemned as counterrevolutionary, and from 1955 to 1979 he was imprisoned for his views; while in prison he sustained physical and mental damage.   Encyclopedia Britannica Online Academic Edition http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9104393 )

How far should they go?

Since Mao’s slogan was vague, many intellectuals had to think on their own how far they should conduct the campaign without opening the Pandora’s Box. One interpretation of Chairman Mao’s slogan on contending of the hundred schools was very convincing. It was given about four circles by Teng Ch’u-min ( a member of the Democratic League’s standing committee who made some very significant remarks in this campaign) :

1.      The contending of the hundred schools must have leadership, namely the leadership of Marxism-Leninism;

2.      The contending of the hundred schools must have direction, namely the direction of socialism;

3.      The contending of the hundred schools must have a boundary, namely it must be confined to the people and enemies should not be allowed to take part.

4.      The contending of the hundred schools must have a criterion. Practice is the criterion of truth and of contending. ( Roderick MacFarquhar  “The Hundred Flowers Campaign and the Chinese Intellectuals ” New York)

      As far as I understand, the basic spirit of Mao’s slogan was loosening the girp boldly and widely blooming. The whole campaign was of the party, for the party and by the party. Hence the purpose served the Party, which is to unmask the bourgeois and petty-bourgeois thoughts and strengthen Marxism-Leninism.

 

l          The significance of Democracy?

 

On the way to democracy

 

l          Institution? 

There was indeed kind of institution during the Hundred Flower Movement, such as forum, press, democratic parties, religious groups and national minorities. However all under control of Communist Party, their limitation was so overwhelming that this campaign was just like a game in which the rule was made by the Communist Party. There were indeed opportunities to let the non-Party members speak out their opinions on the democratic developments in China, however there were hardly responses from the Party and they were just watching non-party members. The ideology outweighed the content and the contribution it would bring about to China. As long as anyone exposes their “bourgeois thoughts”, what he said was nonsense and intention of anti-Party, anti-society and anti-people. Take for Democratic Party for instance, in 1949, when China was founded, three of the six deputy chairmen of the central government were non-party persons, and two out of the four deputy premiers were non-parties persons. Later when the government was reorganized, the seats of the non-party deputy chairmen were moved to the standing committee of the People’s Congress. In the state council, all the twelve deputy premiers belonged to the Communist Party. What is incredible to western countries was that in the January of 1949 the democratic league accepted the leadership of Communist party.

Having been “repressed” for ages, some intellectuals would like to take advantage of this campaign to let off steam by pointing out the existing problems and by offering their suggestions to show that non-party members were able to make contributions to the motherland. In the forum conducted by Communist Party inviting the non-party intelligentsia to criticize the Party, many significant and progressive suggestions were come up with, which, till today, has significant meaning. Chang Po-chun (vice chairman, CDL; minister of communications) put forward political “design department” in order to guarantee the fully corporation between Communist Party and democratic parties especially in policy-making process. Huang Shao-Hung (Central Committee’s Standing Committee, KMTRC) required a legal system be built to make sure the function of National People’s Congress was respected by people, especially the Communist Party members, otherwise, party members would regard the National People’s Congress as merely a formality and the decision were generally reached inside the party before any discussion with the democratic parties. The importance of legal system was also put emphasis by Hsiung Ko-wu ( Vice Chairman, KMITC), who questioned the legal system why many cases in the three-anti campaign had been no definite announcement made as to conclusion of their cases. What could not be ignored was Ch’en Ming-shu’s suggestions that Communist Party control of the universities should be brought to an end.

These advice would have been a leap forward if the party had taken into consideration and taken into action. However, unfortunately, the party only watched and prepared to arrest those who told the truth by accusing him of the enemy of the party, the society and the people.

As a result, none of these suggestions were accepted and all of these suggestions became the evidence of sins.

In the perspective of institution, there was no improvement in democracy even though many democratic elements had drawn people’s attention and gained people’s support. It is simply because the Party took the final decision. In a word, in this movement, China was not on the way to democracy but on the way to testing and to eliminating the danger of democracy and democrats.

 

l          People’s freedom of speech?

It appeared that the government guaranteed the freedom of speech by the people in the period of Hundred Flower Movement. Indeed, people from all walks of life let their voice heard the public and by the party. Scholars in universities took advantage of this chance to attack the language reform, in which Russian substituted English as a second language for scholars to make sure that they were not contaminated by Bourgeois thoughts. Scholars also accused the Party of ruining the free academic atmosphere by remoulding ideology and forcing the intellectuals to study Marxism-Leninism, attend criticism and self criticism, and to write confessions. Doctors had a chance to point out problems such as deficiencies in medical education, and, that the Party neglected the significance of establishing a sound and modern medical service. A democratic wall was taken shape in Peking University by the university students, on which large-character newspapers were posted to reveal “three evils”. On the democratic wall, the students also asked for more information of how the government ran and how decision was made, i.e. the transparency of administration.

Yes, freedom of speech was allowed, then what about freedom after speech?

 

Democracy as a trap?  (case study: Chu Anping)

 

Kuang Ming Daily, is a newspaper run by Democratic League since 1949 ,whose original purpose was to fulfill the freedom of speech, to invite free thoughts about politics. However, later, the press was controlled by communist party both ideologically and in formality. in 1953, all democratic parties and all china trade union ran the newspaper  nominally. in April 1956, “Hundred Flower Movement ” was launched and the Communist Party suggested to clarify the identity of Kuang Ming Daily  and admitted that the paper should be managed by democracts, leaving some room for freedom. the proprieter Chang Po-Chun invited Chu Anping to be the editor-in-chief. the reason Chang chose Chu was that Chu was an outstading liberalist who had studies abroad in England. he once established the Magazine “observation” and published many wonderful and profound thoughts on politics.

       Chu was very enthusiatic about the invition. as a warm-up for the post in Kuang Ming Daily, Chu took over editor of a publication in September 3rd Society (http://www.93.gov.cn/society/index.shtml) . he worked hard  in injecting fresh blood into the magazine and made great progress. however, he did not get any recognition or approval form party leaders. and his “reformation” was limited by the September 3rd Society leaders. until then, Chu felt bureaucracy and sectarianism in the party since he only wanted to improve himself by ablility instead of succumb to the power. when he asked for resignation, the leaders in September 3rd Society showed greatest ever efficiency in satisfying his needs.

the failure in September 3rd did not stop Chu’s enthusiam in Kuang Ming Daily. in 1st April (very ironic date) 1957, Communist party branch in Kuang Ming Daily was cancelled and Chu took his position as editor-in-chief. the main expectation of Chu was to change the role of democratic parties from “receiving political education” to “supervision of government”. his purpose was in accordance with the slogan of Communist Party ” long-term coexistance, mutual benefits”, a step forward democracy and interpreted by many democrats as ” long-term coexistence, my honour;  mutual supervision, my fear” ( 章诒和 最后的贵族  pp48  OXFORD)

the reform Chu brought about fulfilled the needs of democracyin the form of 1)news for democratic parties occupy 1/3 of the newspaper;2) emphasis on activities in democrats;3)emphasis on reports of individuals;4)emphasis on supervision on Communist Party.

sooner after Chu Anping took the job, central government carried out “rectification campaign” .the objective was to eliminate bureaucracy, sectarianism and subjectivism in a more general way and in-depth. Chu believed what Mao had stated and he was willing to apply his supervision as democrats to community party’s campaign of rectification. he even invited intelligentsia  from 9 big cities to collect suggestion and criticism for party. the exciting thoughts and comments became the spotlight of Kuang Ming Daily. his straightforwardness and hs loyalty was bringing disaster instead of recognition.

in May 15th , Mao wrote ” the situtation is changing ( shi qing zheng zai qi bianhua) ” and sent the passage to party’s senior officials. in the article he pointed out that the rightists were very active and let them be gravedigger. the more furious the rightists were, the better for Communist Party. ( the more legitimacy for the party to exert punishment on rightists.) this letter was only known to the party leaders and Chu had no idea of the situation and Party’s intention.  in 1st June 1957, Chu’s speech on the title of ” allow me to offer some opinions to chairman Mao and Premier Chou” vibrated the whole nation. his intense criticism on ” the world belongs to the party” and his harsh question about the composition of central government was even unacceptable by party leaders today. the communist party took harsh reaction to Chu. in 8th June, People’s Daily published ” what is this for”, signalling that anti-rightist replaced Hundred Flower Movement and rectification.  though many intellectuals defended for Chu by addressing that Chu only offers advice instead of harming the nation, the communist party still insisted Chu was bourgeoies and the enemy of the people who longed for a Western-type political and economic system and wished to do away with the Communist Party and socialism. anyone who spoke for Chu would be punished as well. discrimination and humiliation became commonplace for Chu. September 3rd Society even organized Thousands people’s session to systematically criticise and reveal Chu’s  sins. it was an overwhelming humiliation when one was criticised because of misunderstanding, when one was betrayed by his close friends and collegues, when one finds himself all alone. 

at last, in 13th July, Chu reported to the National People’s Congress with the confessment called ” surrender to the people”.

from April 1st to June 8th, Chu only worked for 68 days as editor-in-chief in Kuang Ming Daily. Chu’s contribution to the democracy and freedom of speech was overwhelmed by the title of ” anti-party, anti-people, anti-socialism”. the communist party labelled him as a rightist,as a capitalist. the only capital Chu owned was his determination of promoting democracy in China.

Democracy with Chinese Characters?

l          Definition and emergence of Democracy with Chinese Characters

l          It is not a democracy with Chinese Characters, based on previous research.

Conclusion (prepare)

In a state of civil war, all the democratic parties were powerless because they lacked armed forces. These Peking forum make it quite clear that the democratic parties have no power at all and their members little if any authorities, whatever their official title.

结尾:

百花齐放百家争鸣并不是一个陷阱。这是当时时代所需,也是共产党统治中国稳固政权的一个不错的合理的手段。在严峻的国际大环境中,中国共产党必须要想办法团结一切可以团结的力量,才可以稳固新建的政权,而非闲着没有事情做,去消灭阶级敌人。民主,作为共产党的一个统治手段,的确解决了新中国的一些问题,在百花齐放运动中的一些批评也得到了中央的回复和肯定。

但是由于新生政权与当权派之间的不成熟的配合,以及形势出乎意料的发展, 百花齐放并没有在那个时期内长期坚持下去。因为共产党看到了资产阶级思想的苗头,看到了肃清敌人的必要性,但是共产党并没有立刻采取行动,相反他们在观望,允许人民听到这些右派的声音。希望通过这样的批评和对于民主,国家的看法,首先教育群众,哪怕是反面例子,其次,肃清反对力量,引蛇出洞以消除阶级敌人。文化的构建需要一定的历史环境,新中国的此次运动在一些程度上推动了民主的发展,在客观上反映出一些问题。但是由于党思想层面的谨慎和过于注重阶级概念,忽视客观存在的事实,有很多意识形态上的问题被小题大做,而很多实际的问题由于官僚作风一直得不到解决。共产党和民主党派之间的配合尚不成熟,之间有很多不统一的地方,最主要的体现在国家的形式,意识形态还有对于民主和自由的定义。

百花齐放运动最终在接下来的整风运动和反右斗争中还是偃旗息鼓,不了了之,但是双百方针并没有就此消失。邓小平在《坚持四
项基本原则》一文中强调指出,“无论如何,思想理论问题的研究和讨论,一定要坚决执行百花齐放、百家争鸣的方针”。时至今日,双百方针仍然作为一种主流的思想。首先,此方针提出了兼容的思想,以辩证的眼光看待事物、,纠正了五四运动以来的片面性。其次,解决了古为今用,洋为中用的文化接纳方式;最重要的是肯定了知识分子的重要性。( 山西高等学校社会科学学报
SOC IAL SCIENCES JOURNAL OF COLLEGES OF SHANXI V ol. 20 N o. 7
( Jul. 2008)从“双百”方针到和谐文化———论中国共产党对主流文化的构建秦晔)

百花齐放的一个春天过去了,但是春天不只有一个,相信百花齐放的春天还会到来,民主的春风也会吹拂中国大地。

有关游牧民族和定居

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综合新华社报道,国务院总理温家宝5日主持召开国务院常务会议,研究部署进一步扩大内需促进经济平稳较快增长的措施。

会议确定了当前进一步扩大内需、促进经济增长的十项措施。
一是加快建设保障性安居工程。加大对廉租住房建设支持力度,加快棚户区改造,实施游牧民定居工程,扩大农村危房改造试点。【南方周末】 

看到这里,我突然敏感了起来,实施游牧民定居工程?也就是说让游牧民族的生存方式彻底改变,结束他们自古以来逐水草而居的潇洒生活?也就是说,藏民汉化指日可待,不久的未来藏民汉民都是一种生活方式,甚至都是一种语言?再危言耸听进一步分析,未来的未来,中国将不再是56个民族,而是1个民族,同一个国家,同一个民族?

游牧民定居,是为了让他们更好地享受公共服务,过上富裕的生活,慢着,在青海至2007年底,已有6万游牧藏人搬迁到由政府开发的新城镇。曲麻莱县是黄河源头,那里的游牧藏人被分批迁移出来,安置在格尔木市南郊的沙滩上。他们卖掉了牛羊,每户每月可以领到政府发的500元,期限是10年。每月500元,就是富裕的生活?而且这笔钱是政府出,也就是说你们藏民要乖乖地听政府的话,否则就断了你们的活路,不给你们钱,你们也无法回到过去的生活?经济制裁?我把政府想得太恶了,但是事实上,谁掌控了经济,谁就有发言权。藏人搬到政府开发的新城镇,新城镇?主要还是汉人吧,说的还是汉语吧,那么藏民们,对不起,你们不得不要学汉语,否则的话就被边缘化,就无法融入到新的生活,就只能靠政府的500块钱,勉强填饱肚子了。(藏语主要分布于中国西藏自治区和青海、四川、甘肃、云南等省以及印度、尼泊尔、不丹、锡金。使用总人数有6150000)看了看这个数据,说藏语的人还是有的,在这些人中进行交易还是可能的,最起码,藏语不能颓废到濒临灭绝的地步。西藏自治区,自治,自己管理自己的内务,自己管理自己的生活方式,自己管理自己的语言和教育,自己管理自己的收入来源,这样有什么不好?说游牧民族的生存方式严重影响了生态环境,可是这么几千年来,游牧民族和大自然的关系一直都很和谐,不然的话,他们早就没有机会逐水草而居了,他们也知道如果他们与大自然作对,会遭到报应,因为那是他们唯一的出路,唯一的生存方式,所以他们比我们汉人更加清楚究竟怎样和大自然保持关系,究竟怎样可持续发展。

達賴喇嘛:「西藏的外交事務和國防應該由中國中央政府掌管。但在其他領域:如教育、經濟和環境,藏族人自然比漢族人強。也鑒於此,藏族人在這些領域應該有充分的權利。」(http://www.epochtimes.com/b5/7/10/20/n1873723.htm

看到这个,我竟然有些同情达赖喇嘛了,他的诺贝尔和平奖在那些尊重人权的西方人眼中也没有那么讽刺地意味深长了。

一直以来憎恨明偷暗夺得新疆小偷,憎恨打砸抢烧的西藏一小撮分子,憎恨达赖喇嘛像只癞皮狗一样巴结西方来要挟我们的政府。但是,当我真正看到单纯的藏民从中央的政策中牺牲大于获利,我才知道事情的发生并非偶然,并非那一小撮藏独分子天生就是贱命,就是拼了命跟中央政府对着干,就是不可教之徒。他们的政治诉求并非独立,而是真正意义上的自治。我相信,和平谈判的空间是有的,前提是中央政府的心态放平,不要像某些国家一样以一个救世主的心态去和他们对话,说到底,让他们去管理他们的事情,我们只是“为人服务”(好像加上了人民,就有了政治上的限制,在中国不是每个人都是人民的。)

why i like obama

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when i was told Obama won the campaign, i almost burst into tears because of joy. why am i so excited? anyway he is irrelevant to me. i feel happy for Americans and i could feel change and pride. it is about people’s choice, about people’s writing the history, about people’s resolution to make the whole world know everything could happen and American dream does not fade away.

obama’s charisma makes me feel lucky to live in his time and in his age and i could even set one of my goals to interview him and end the time i regret not in the contemparary time with a hero with a great.

it is not personal cult.  look at how he addresses a speech, look at how he articulate his ideas, look at how he is close to his family, his people, look at how he cares about others. you will know what is going to happen, you will know financial crisis again give americans more opportunites than challenges.

below is some words said by obama. continue to watch him and see whether he really brings about change and how the change will effect the world.

I’m about to head to Grant Park to talk to everyone gathered there, but I wanted to write to you first.

我正准备去格兰特公园,去跟聚集在那儿的人们交流,但是我想先给你写这封信。

We just made history.

我们刚刚创造了历史。

And I don’t want you to forget how we did it.

而我,不想你就此忘记,忘记我们是如何完达这一壮举的。

You made history every single day during this campaign — every day you knocked on doors, made a donation, or talked to your family, friends, and neighbors about why you believe it’s time for change.

在这场选战的每一天里,你都在创造历史——就在你敲开一扇扇门,捐出一笔钱,或者与你的家人朋友、朋友、邻居谈论你为何相信是时候改变了的每一天里。

I want to thank all of you who gave your time, talent, and passion to this campaign.

我想要感谢你们,感谢为这场选战付出了时间、天才和热情的所有人。

We have a lot of work to do to get our country back on track, and I’ll be in touch soon about what comes next.

为了让我们的国家重回轨道,我们还有很多的工作要做,稍后我将就接下来要发生的事情与你联系。

But I want to be very clear about one thing…

而今我想要明确一件事情…….

All of this happened because of you.

今天所发生的这一切,全都因为有你。

Thank you,

谢谢你

Barack

贝拉克

olympic spirit, apolitical?

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i was so indoctrined that the olympic was apolitical that when i was informed that the origin of olympics was about politics, i was shocked. just like what i have believed was fake and invented by other people who had bad intentions.

i could not wait to check by myself.

politics exsited since the ancient olympics: being a place to announce political alliances and the victory in the ancient olympics making the exiles to return to their cities. a victory in olympics meant far more than physical strength, but also meant the precondition of negociation of release of war. (http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/Olympics/pol.html) it was about the politics the day it was born.

oh, so the true olympic spirit is to be taken advantage of by politics;

oh, so in the olympics, no matter how excellent the atheles are, they are just tools by their nations to fulfill some political petition in the international politics arena;

oh, so olympics is as dirty as politics, and helps politics pollute our soul and make us disappointed

oh,so the spirit of olympics in Beijing was distorted by the central government and we have been misled by them

oh, so discourse analysis tells me that i was unfortunately cheated by Communist Party and if i did not come to hongkong, i would be decieved forever.

is that true ?

i still do not want to believe it

when mentioned the spirit,  doesn’t it mean what it should be like rather than what it is now?

when using the spirit to prevent something irrelavant, doesn’t it mean we want to maintain the purity of the sports game and leave sports fans in a clean environment?

why getting exhausted in political petitions on every occasion, no matter how it is inappropriate

yes, it is a good opportunity to request the central government for democracy and human rights, however the reality is that people would turn the emotion from sympathy to hatred and the petition turns out to be ineffective and makes no sense. some famous stars boycotted olympics because they think China uses the olympics for politics. most importantly, the stars take olympics as a tool for politics first and with the coloured glass, everything the central government has done must of political purposes. what are the political purposes in the Olympics? war? China has no interest to attack Iraq. show-off? every country who applies has the intention.

we are just inviting people from around the world to have a sports meeting. why so hostile?

we just presented the whole world with a spectacular event, why so upset?

we just clarify the true spirit of Olympics, why so ironic?

we can not confuse ourself with what it is and what it should be.

olympics should be apolitical and purely about sports about challenge the limit, about fairness, about eqality, about competition and friendship.

if you want to make olympics as a stage to ask for political request, go to international olympics committe, they might be useful.

do not show off in front of the whole world.

Q&A (discourse, elite)

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Q: the relationship between discourse analysis and rational choice 
theory: discourse analysis denies rational choice theory, or ratioanl
choice theory helps analyze discourse?

THe interesting thing about discourse analysis is that “everything can be understood as a discourse”. So take the core assumptions of rational choice theory, discourse analysis people will say that the reference to “rationality” by actors is all that matters. Funny enough, then, what is “rational” to A may not be true to B. It happens a lot of times in politics and policy-making that the Government argues with the opposition parties on “which one of them is RATIONAL”. Now if both sides come up with statistics and data to support their arguments, discourse analysis will show you “how such facts and information are being INTERPRETED in favour of one’s choice of policy“… It goes on and on. It may be confusing to us as researchers who seek the “truth”, however, before there discourse analysis is already helping us to see through some of the mechanisms and dynamics in politics that one cannot ignore.

Politicians use discourse for the purpose of communication with others. A discourse concerns one’s definition of situation, thereby “defining a scope” which enables or limits one’s actions and those of the others’. Politics can be science if by science we mean knowledge gained by systematic analysis and thinking. This would be the original definition of science in ancient Greece. Unfortunately, nowadays most people will simply think science is physical science, so politics and humanities are not science or scientific. In my view, there is no point to struggle on this point. In the British traditions, we are fairly happy to be known as students of politics or political studies instead of political science.

How to use all these in research? (1) Research is about from knowing to understanding, (2) We want to explain (understand) why things happen(ed) or not happen(ed) in politics and government, (3) Discourse analysis, like the other theories introduced earlier, asks us to look at “discourse” (how they are created or changed, with what purposes, and with what impacts) to complete our research, (4) In the handout I gave you, you could see points like “articulation”, “hegemony” etc. that are tools for discourse analysis.

OK, and I guess by the way, this answer may also confirm your suspicion that discourse analysis is only one of the caves. Well done!

Q: do you believe “the minority holds the truth?
I don’t, unless it is possible to prove that the so-called “elites” are 100% right all the time. A more serious and sophisticated arguments may well be the fact that information and knowledge can never be distributed evenly in any society, so some know more or better than others. However, is it possible to argue that a stable minority of people (the elites of the PARTY) happen to be “all-knowing”?

Q: about the elites, i guess what you want to address is as long as they are not totally right. ordinary people should challenge their  decision when there is confict and help the elites gain high   percentage of “rightness” , right?
On elites, sorry you did not get it. I meant NO ONE can claim to know the TRUTH. There can be NO MONOPOLY of the TRUTH. I am not sure why leaders or elites need “HELP” to get to know the TRUTH. I guess it is a mistake to assume there exists a clear and rigid divide between the leaders and the ordinary people. Is it not rather unfortunate to assume that we have no right, no power, no chance to change leaders, that there are plenty of young Obamas, Clintons and even Palins among ordinary people? Since NO ONE can be right all the time, why can’t we have a level-playing fields where different ideas, view and interests all come into play to advance common goods and collective welfare? A good book to start with: Bernard Crick, In Defence of Politics.

about the reading material
> i am curious about one of your point
> —民主的政治制度有助将威胁国家主权的言论和行为转化成一种良性竞争的动力. the examples are pretty
> advanced countries such as Canada and British. and to what extent will
> it be feasibel to China ? i do not want to say ” well, we are
> different” rather i would like to know how and how much will that
> experience help China solving with some knotty problems such as ” Free
> Tibet” and ” Independence of Taiwan” . there is not a clear line
> between ” indulge” and ” tolerate” , i believe.
I have tried to answer the first 3 questions in my last reply. So let me try the last one on Taiwan and Tibet. How many ways are there to resolve territorial disputes or ethnic conflicts? Basically, there are 2: suppression or negotiation. Under each strategy there could be variations of all kinds. Sometimes governments try BOTH at the same time, but one of them may be the dominate strategy, to be assisted by the other as a subordinate strategy. It’s held that democratic systems which concentrate people’s mind on the well-beings of humankind does offer better chances for peaceful resolution of disputes or conflicts involving territorial claims and ethnicity. Most people prefer peaceful and institutional channels over radical/bloody and revolutionary means. Democracy also provides contenders with better possibilities/bigger scope to an inclusive approach of sharing powers and reaching compromises which may or may not lead to separation. A top-down, heavy-handed policy leads to
rebellion and deep-seated hatred.

 

On Tibet and Taiwan, not sure what you mean by tolerance and indulgence. Please clarify least we should talk pass each other. Thanks!

 Discourse Analysis asks us researchers to treat politics as discourse (actors’ definition of situation). Such definitions can be found in speeches, statements, symbols, self-identity, choice of colours…. So we are looking at discourse in various forms, shapes, and contexts.

有关中国人权的一些东西

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规划未来中国人权事业发展
中国将制定《国家人权行动计划》

综合新华社报道,记者从国务院新闻办公室获悉,中国政府决定制定《国家人权行动计划》,对未来两年中国人权事业的发展作出规划。
据了解,该《国家人权行动计划》将通过全面系统地制定、落实促进和保障人权的工作目标及措施,进一步改善我国人权状况,全面推进我国人权事业发展,促进社 会和谐。《国家人权行动计划》内容将涉及完善政府职能,扩大民主,加强法治,改善民生,保护妇女、儿童、少数民族的特殊权利,提高全社会的人权意识等与人权相关的各个方面。
中国人权研究会副会长兼秘书长董云虎说,这是中国政府第一次制订以人权为主题的国家发展规划,是中国政府贯彻落实“国家尊重和保障人权”的宪法原则和以人为本的科学发展观的重要举措。
“过去中国政府发表的人权白皮书讲的主要是过去取得的进展和现状,而这次是规划未来。”他说,《行动计划》将根据联合国的要求制定,世界上共有23个国家制订了人权行动计划,而中国是着手制订人权国家发展规划的极少数世界大国之一。
“人权”在中国的历史
1991年,中国政府发表《中国的人权状况》白皮书,首次以政府文件的形式正面肯定了人权概念在中国社会主义政治发展中的地位,从政治上确立人权的概念,将实现充分的人权确立为中国社会主义所追求的崇高目标。
1997年,中共十五大召开,首次将“人权”概念写入党的全国代表大会的主题报告,使人权成为党领导国家建设的主题。
2004年,“国家尊重和保障人权”写入宪法,首次将“人权”由一个政治概念提升为法律概念,将尊重和保障人权确立为国家根本大法的一项原则。
2006年,“尊重和保障人权,促进人权事业的全面发展”被载入《国民经济和社会发展第十一个五年规划纲要》。
2007年,中共十七大将尊重和保障人权的内容写入党章。
到目前为止,中国一共参加了22项国际人权公约,其中包括《消除一切形式种族歧视国际公约》《消除对妇女一切形式歧视公约》《禁止酷刑和其他残忍、不人道或有辱人格的待遇 或处罚公约》《儿童权利公约》《经济、社会及文化权利国际公约》等核心国际人权公约。中国政府认真履行所承担的相关义务,积极提交履约报告,充分发挥国际 人权公约在促进和保护本国人权方面的积极作用。
未来两年人权事业的发展规划
《国家人权行动计划》由国务院新闻办公室和外交部共同牵头组织制定。为制定该《计划》,建立了由国务院新闻办公室和外交部牵头的联席会议机制,邀请全国人 大、全国政协、最高人民法院、最高人民检察院和国家发改委等国务院有关部门以及相关群众团体、非政府组织共50多个单位共同参与。同时,还成立了由全国重点高校和研究单位十多位人权专家组成的专家组。
国务院新闻办公室主任王晨指出,尊重和保障人权是人类社会进步的重要成果和现代文明社会的重要标志,是中国共产党和政府治国理政的重要目标和原则,是坚持以人为本、推动科学发展、促进社会和谐的必然要求。中国政府决定制定《国家人权行动计划》,充分体现了党的十七大关于“尊重和保障人权,依法保证全体社会成员平等参与、平等发展的权利”的基本原则和精神,再次表明了我国高度重视人权、致力于促进人权事业全面发展的坚强决心。
他强调,中国政府将以高度负责的精神对中国未来人权事业的发展作出详细规划,提出切实可行的措施。《国家人权行动计划》的制定对于推动中国人权事业的发展将具有重要的指导意义。

【南方周末】

 

刚刚得到的一点点小信心又被一篇文章扼杀在摇篮当中了。一位乘火车的农民工愣是因为自己情绪的激烈被列车长包成粽子窒息而死。列车长的原因是不愿意因为这个癫痫的人伤害到其他的人。难道这样就是把别人绑死的原因了吗?出了事,我负责。你负责地起人命吗?不要说人权了,连起码人的生存的权利都不尊重。不知道司法会给这位列车长怎样的裁判。

有时真的是拿刁民没有办法,有时真的是以刁治刁。在中国,只要不影响到自己的切身利益,就不会去要求很多,只是满足的生活。一旦当事情发生到了自己的身上,才想起来取维护自己的权益,到了那个时候已经太晚了,因为那个时候对抗的是一些制度,一些没有人性的僵硬的制度。we tend to satisfy but not maximize. 人民的主动参与权实在是太有限,人人都希望自己幸运的度过自己的一生,不要有什么倒霉的事情到自己的身上来,不去惹事情,能姑息就不动怒。想想现在的人民,所谓的国家的主人其实还是臣民的心态,是奴隶的心态。柏拉图认为不愿意参与政治的人都是idiot, 不愿寻求自身的发展。我有些认同,因为现在又太多太多的人把自己当成了自己世界的局外人。不愿意去争取,不愿意去要求,不愿意去改变。奥巴马终于成为了第一位非裔的美国总统。我突然想到了前不久听到的一个采访。采访的是一位百岁老人,他说,当时的一位很有影响力的人说,美国真正实现民主的时候是允许一个nigro 当选总统。注意,他用的单词时 黑人奴隶的意思。百岁老人当时不明白这句话的意思,认为一点都不make sense,选举之前,他明白了,它表达了希望看到美国的黑人总统,希望看到美国真正的民主,看到真正的人权,看到真正的尊重和机会。谢天谢地,他看到了。

撤得太远了。