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Will Capitalism Bring Democracy To China?

(Photo by Robin Holland)

Conversing with Bill Moyers on this week’s JOURNAL, journalist Philip Pan discussed the situation on the ground in China and the prospects for democratization of its infamously authoritarian government.

“I think we have this assumption in the West that capitalism, that free markets lead to free societies, that capitalism will lead to democracy in China, that it’s almost an automatic process. Once income levels reach a certain level there, that this political [change] is going to happen in China, just as it did in other parts of the world. My argument would be that it’s not automatic, certainly. We’ve seen 30 years now of strong economic growth, and the [Communist] Party is arguably stronger now than it has been ever in these past 30 years. The Party has been able to use capitalism to strengthen its hold on power.

At the same time, though, the party has retreated in many ways. People have much more personal freedom than ever before. Because so many people have been lifted out of poverty, they have many more options in life. So it’s a mixed picture, but I think it would be naïve for policy makers to assume that this is going to be an automatic process, that we just have to continue to trade with China and the political change is just going to happen.”

What do you think?

Will trade with capitalist democracies transform China into a democratic state?

What is the relationship between democracy and capitalism?


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Comments

Many people will wonder why help the animals when so many people are suffering. I say: pick your cause; this is mine.

Of all the coverage of China, I NEVER see the abuses of animals, and the people who struggle to help them.

In its march to progress, the Chinese are ignoring the rights of their own citizens, the Tibetens, as well as dealing with one of the most genocidal countries in the world, the Sudan. All news is ignoring that the Chinese are also sacrificing their animals to become one of the "great" countries of the world. They told apartment dwellers in Beijing that their animals were diseased, leading frightened pet owners to dump their pets in the street, where they were rounded up and taken to killing camps.

Thousands of cats and dogs are skinned ALIVE and their fur passed off as exotic animals for sale in the U.S. and Europe.

Horse fighting results in the deaths of many stallions after they are goaded into a frenzy by mares and whipped to get into the arena.

Live animals are thrown into arenas to be torn apart by tigers with the smaller animal being "bought" by families who watch with pleasure.

There are numerous more examples of Chinese atrocities regarding their treatment of animals. Why has China been chosen to be the home of the Olympics when their record on human and animal rights is so rampant, widespread and ignored?

China may be on the verge of becoming one of the world's most powerful nations, but that does not make it a great nation. The money in their banks is stained with the blood of human and animal sacrifice. I am speaking up for the most vulnerable and voiceless of all its victims: the animals.

Posted by: Martha Ciattei | August 23, 2008 12:04 AM

Terrific idea Martha. I'm sure Governor Palin will want to try this with Moose, Elk and Caribou when she returns to Alaska.

"What can we do about it?"


Are you insane? Who are we to say anything about how they run their country? How can you say that we shouldn't interfere in places like Iraq and make a case to interfere in China? It's the symptomatic problem of us, Americans to make comments and criticize others when we should keep our noses out of their problems.

Do you think it would be better to do "regime change" China? And have them start all over again with a divisive power struggle that will completely tear the country apart and cause massive instability to the world? I don't think you are recommending that, but given your language and criticism of China, you can arm those who would abdicate force. You become an enabler of those who would preach radical interference, hubris.


And your comments regarding labor conditions, compared to your often stated (or stated by your guest) reason our country is falling apart from our lack of manufacturing, is the very reason why our country has fallen apart. My parents worked in sweat shops and that gave us an opportunity in this country to rise above. Then came a wave of protest of bad conditions in these factories, which made these factories go overseas. Now there is none of those opportunities for the working class here and no other prospect to rise above. You argument about China doing the same will make manufacturers leave China and go to place like Vietnam with an even lower wage, killing opportunity in China for people whom you profess to help.

I suspect Capitalism actually would prefer a dictatorship to a democracy as there is much less overhead in the former. After all, it is much cheaper to buy off a few heads of state than to have to bribe an entire Congress.

Posted by: Aquifer
I have to agree with Aquifer. There is; however, this mixed terminology called Democracy. Much to the chagrin of those who think we live in a Democratic State, it is a Republic. There remains a huge difference between these two ideologies. China might be on target for a Republic given the expansion of a new middle class. But, those lobbyists hope to thwart this newly developing class. Added, China fears Western Ways for many reasons...Open Door Policy/Gun-Boat Diplomacy.

David Eddy: Jesus (legendary, an Essene pacifist) didn't beat those money changers out of the Temple because he envied their gold. Take off your belt, David. Now who deserves a whoopin'? (Both Obama/Biden and McCain/Palin, even Bob Barr and Cynthia McKinney, whiney Ron Paul, Ralph Nader and Dennis Kucinich all valuing career over the general welfare. Look at the Christian denominations counting their take, extorted by fear and hate-mongering.) Who you gonna whoop? (Jesus would be a terror suspect these days.)

Note: I dreamt last night you and ted Michael Morgan were up for the same job. Who gets it? (Answer: Most people don't get it.)

What did the Olympics teach us about Chinese government?
"When it comes to fun: They BEAT everybody."

Watch for a repeat at the RNC as legitimate protesters and covering press are given a police party. Remember how in Argentina the balloon drop morphed into a dissenter drop (from aircraft). See Democracy Now (Tuesday)as Amy reports her own arrest.

I suspect Capitalism actually would prefer a dictatorship to a democracy as there is much less overhead in the former. After all, it is much cheaper to buy off a few heads of state than to have to bribe an entire Congress.

Ted Michael Morgan,
You are right. We have sold out to capitalistic greed. Instead of forcing capitalism to serve the people; the people are forced to serve capitalism.
Our politicians; in particular the Republicans have failed their constituents. We have not only succumbed to a "Rule by the Few" which is an Oligarchy. We have allowed our president to become a dictator.
The Chinese have beat us at the game of capitalism and terrorists have forced us into accepting the lose of our morality and our freedom.
Hopefully, the next administration will turn things around.
We are in a desperate situation and we are expected to accept business as usual. I think not if we want to survive as a Christian Nation.

"I have been to China with a delegate of philosophers through the "People to People" Organization.
A key issue with the development of China's economic success is their adherence to the concept of "Ye". "Ye" is the idea that it is best to do what is the right solution to the problem.
The problem with our economics is that we insist on doing what is right for greedy corporations with the money to buy off politicians. Until we remove lobbyists from the lobby of congress; we will continue to do what is inconsistent with what is the best solution to the problem. We need to remove road blocks or we will self-destruct."

We have failed to keep an eye on where and with whom we do business. We have sold out our fellow human being for the cheap goods with which we struggle to fill our empty lives. We have let vermin rule our lives and we have sold our souls to these brutal fiend evil spirits. The problem is not our government but those to whom we have sold our government for a mess of junk

I have been to China with a delegate of philosophers through the "People to People" Organization.
A key issue with the development of China's economic success is their adherence to the concept of "Ye". "Ye" is the idea that it is best to do what is the right solution to the problem.
The problem with our economics is that we insist on doing what is right for greedy corporations with the money to buy off politicians. Until we remove lobbyists from the lobby of congress; we will continue to do what is inconsistent with what is the best solution to the problem. We need to remove road blocks or we will self-destruct.

barb minas: Your political theory and your artwork are superb. Keep writing on Bill's blog when you have time. Congratulations on the successful hip procedure. How do you exercise your vestigal freedom in Scottsdale? We're all sharing ideas.
beretco.op@gmail.com

Joseph Leung:
Don't let door catch que braid on way out to corporate importer job. China is about as reformed as an alcoholic Baptist deacon.

Nothing in this World makes People so Afraid as the Influence of an Independant Minded Individual. Attrib. Al Einstien

My own problem is that we the People have been lied to and controlled, cheated and oppressed for so long that we no longer believe anything our politicians tell us. I don't even call them leaders because leader leads somewhere. These people are leading us all to HELL and I don't want to follow.

I don't think we have a chance. We need a NEW Constitutional Convention and NOBODY IN OFFICE RIGHT NOW CAN BE INVITED.

Wayne Coady

Bull, nonsense.

You are now the guardians of your won liberties. We may justly address you, as the “decemviri” did the Romans, and say: “Nothing that we propose can pass into al aw without your consent. Be yourselves, O Americans, the authors of those laws on which your happiness depends.

Samuel Adams, August 1776

Barb Minas : Well we are not all falling in line are we.

Political parties, unions and religious organizations are the three key elements required and used to dumb down society.

Then again those who belong to these private clubs feel the need to belong ...because they cannot think for themselves.

Onething that has happened thanks to the internent ..is the genie is out of the box and more and more people are connecting, this is a real live problem for ALL political parties.

Cheers

Wayne Coady
Cole Harbour Nova scotia Canada

Authoritarianism and capitalism go hand in hand. China is becoming a perfect corporation. In the U.S. authoritarianism similar to that found in all totalitarian states is fast taking hold. We (the government) take over huge sections of the economy. We (the government) then "privatize" that section by giving it to a corporation that is essentially just an extention of the government: Haliburton, for example, and other companies. This process extends government control, eliminates open competition and creates an authoritarian state. Most people don't have a clue that this democracy is disappearing as fast as the ice cap. They do not understand that capitalism and democray do not thrive together. One is about money and the other is about the human spirit. As for CHINA...taken as a whole, it is the perfect capitalist state.

Here in North America our political nature is to point out all the ills of China when it come to Human Rights.

But we are more than willing to over look our own Human Rights Abuse and our "governing" parties have since 1914 held onto a law that legalizes abuse and that law is known as "WORKERS COMPENSATION LAW".

This is a law like no other law, that removes the right of injured workers as soon as they become injured on a workplace.

Injured workers have lost their homes, their families and their credit all because the present political parties keep in place this very bad faith law that caters to and protect a business community who could care less about their injured employees.

Here in North America the very people who vote and support this present political structure, is supporting Human Rights Abuse in "their" own land.

I say clean up the Human Rights abuse in North America before you point to China or any other country.

The present political structure caters to a very abusive and corrupt business community right here and right now in North America. Our only hope to repair this abuse in to stop supporting these dirty political parties who have stolen away what should be "ALL" the peoples governing system. Right now we have lost control to a dirty business community.

We do not have a media that reports for the public ..but instead preaches the message of the coporate community.

Cheers

Wayne Coady

Bill, I respect you so much that it is hard for me to write this comment. I think and I am sure you are out of touch on China issues. People use to use their old way of thinking to comment modern China. This just don't work, China has change so much that even people living inside can't keep up with and what make you think you already did enough homework before you make any comment? China is on the right track and Chinese people have a much better government than people in US. So, time will tell, the so call human right issue mentioned in you progarm really not a issue at all. Chinese government has been dealing with a much greater task for the people than the so call human right abuse. PEW recent poll shows that 86% of Chinese think their county is on the right track, 81% happy about their life. I think you need to spend at least two to three in China and talk to real people not just those relied on western money (so-call human right fighters). Just do you real homework first, recycling old impression can help you understand China. Thanks!

No....

Justice will bring democracy to China..

Capitalism without Justice exists already in many non-democratic (Authoritarian) countries.

It leads to exploitation, oppression, and eventual de-humanization ....always always always

Evil lives where Justice is Perverted, Deferred, or Denied…..

Victory, Peace and Progress…..begin with Justice here at home

Investigate prosecute and sentence

The existing Administration……

Also "off the table" Complicit Democrats, Party Pawns

Executive , Legislative and Judiciary Branches need to been cleaned out

Corporate Criminals

Investigate, Prosecute and Sentence

Without Justice…..There is no hope…….no change……. no Real Future…….just illusions and distractions.

We are a land Governed not by men, but by law.

Victory, Peace and Progress begin with Justice,

the cornerstone of any real democracy,

"The Truth Shall Set You Free"……..Still

BTW, A good thread on communism

http://www.politicalforum.com/political-opinions-beliefs/45694-can-communism-work.html

My reply is on page 13 of the thread.

It didn't bring democracy to the USA so why should it bring it to any other country?

Before we applaud the nature of our form of democracy, it behooves us to look at the society that we live in. For this, the work of Sheldon Wolin might be instructive. Wolin believes that our society has spawned a subtle form of totalitarianism, and that it arises from what many see as its strengths. He writes, "Our thesis is this: it is possible for a form of totalitarianism, different from the classical one, to evolve from a putatively 'strong democracy' instead of a 'failed' one." Moreover, the nature of inverted totalitarian "lies in wielding total power without appearing to, without establishing concentration camps, or enforcing ideological uniformity, or forcibly suppressing dissident elements so long as they remain ineffectual. A demotion in the status and stature of the 'sovereign people' to patient subjects is symptomatic of systemic change, from democracy as a method of 'popularizing' power to democracy as a brand name for a product marketable at home and marketable abroad. The new system, inverted totalitarianism, is one that professes the opposite of what, in fact, it is. The United States has become the showcase of how democracy can be managed without appearing to be suppressed."
For those who truly love freedom, the United States may not be the best role model for countries such as China. Given what Wolin writes, I suspect that the relationship between capitalism and democracy is not symbiotic, but antagonistic, and that this unhealthy marriage has given birth to a new form of totalitarianism, revealed by our institutional embrace of such things as torture, imperialism, and environmental irresponsibility. Is is better than plain old fashioned, totalitarianism? Possibly, but the verdict may not be in on that question. It is likely that Alexis de Tocqueville would not be surprised.

Your question : " Will Capitalism Bring Democracy To China?"

Well based on all of the foreclosures in the United States and the round of Coporate fraud..if I were the citizens of China , i stay to hell away from these Capitalist bums here in North America.

I still am shocked over Al Gore getting an environmentialist award , when he continues to fly or sail around the world , while telling we little people to walk and cut back.

I say to America , if you want to take ownership of what should be "your" government, stop supporting these dirty political parties. Political parties are a rich mans private club which they use to hijack what should be the people government.

It time we all ignored this present party structure and voted for candidates who are not owned by the party elite. Vote to be true to yourself and your country ...vote for the independent candidate, who is willing to work for you and your state...not the party.

Cheers

Wayne Coady

How can televsion be so bad?

Gosh, how can television be? Can’t we just skip the political conventions and get on with the election without relentless interviews of garrulous old women from Massachusetts and talking heads babbling nonsense about prior conventions one wants to forget?

I have wathced five minutes of the Democractic Convention and I was to scream, "Get to the point!"

The post-WWII corporatist onslaught upon popular democracy in the USA by the elite and their governmental machinery has been accelerated exponentially during this latest administration. The power of repetition (as in repeated lies by the media), wedded to the power of officialdom's shameless manipulation and betrayal of the popular will, have left the ""public" unprotected, unrepresented, fleeced, bamboozled, cheated, and deprived of their rightful voice in a purportedly free and open democratic society.

Form is NOT substance! The procedural act of casting a "ballot" does NOT equate to genuine access to decision-making by the general "public". Corporations in the USA have made it their life mission, ever since the beginning of our Industrial Revolution, to thwart, avoid, overturn, subvert, co-opt, neutralize and otherwise render impotent ANY effort by the "people", through their elected officials, to protect themselves and their environment against the naked rapacity of corporate avarice!

Losses, risk, expenses and horrific negative social consequences of this corporate greed have been "socialized".

Profit and gain, both real and intangible, continue to be "privatized" in the coffers of the wealthy elite, ALWAYS at the expense of the "public interest".

Allen,
I lived in Europe during the World War II and after the World War II. I am aware of many executive orders that exist! I am aware of many people “pronounce insufficiently adorable” and sent “to concentration camps and gas chambers” or a forceful assimilation with a “hot iron placed around the neck” of a person! These were “Executive orders” executed by leaders with no justification!
“Take out to the streets...etc”! I have listed at list ten recommendation made by some. Some of us believe in changes by “AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION”; “EMPOWER the PEOPLE TO “EXPRES THEIR WILL” on ALL ISUES”!
The Constitution should have been address and amended long before these crises!
Changes should not have been made by adapting new LAWS!
AMENDMENS to CONSTITUTION worked before and should work again!
THE POWER SHOULD BE IN the PEOPLE and NOT in the dysfunctional CONGRESS and SENAT that conveyed their power to the PRESIDENT!
The executive orders should be issued and executed by the power of the “WILL of THE PEOPLE”! It is our live, our destiny and should be decided by the people and not by by the dysfunctional CONGRESS, SENAT, EXECITIVE ORDERS or a corrupt JUSTICE SYSTEM!

A corporation is a dictatorship, not a democracy

People who think capitalism is democratic and freedom-loving have no knowledge of the history of capitalist development worldwide.

USA corporate media and the entire machinery of "mass communications" in America has been beating the drums: "Globalization", "Privatization", "Free Markets", "Capitalism"

The corporations and the government which they own and control, ALL of them have equated the 4 items mentioned above with "Freedom", "Liberation", "Liberty", "Democracy". NOTHING COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH!

We have based our form of Democracy on the Greek one,where all are equal, except the well off who are obliged to show nothing more than tolerance for the lower class, this enables capitalism to flourish as it always has, only for the elite to use the citizenry as a commodity,to exploit and abuse without repercussions as that is their entitlement.

The democratic short comings of China described by Philip Pan in your August 23, 2008 interview are interesting. Your comments and questions in the interview revealed that you obviously though that China should be like us.

You forgot to mention that William Simon, Secretary of the Treasury (1974-1977), in his book, A Time for Truth (ISBN 0-07-057378-6) was appalled that the liabilities of certain trust funds were left out of the U.S. Budget (specifically see p. 91). These 4 omissions from the budget have now grown to over $20 trillion in net liabilities—that these net liabilities are growing about $1trillion a year —that these net liabilities are in addition to the Public Debt of some $5.4 trillion held by the public—that these enormous debts overshadow the current Gross Domestic Product of some $13 trillion—that our form of government is no panacea—that it is persons like you not revealing the actual U.S. fiscal problems to the public rather than facing up them—that these catastrophic problems are now beyond fixing and it spells the end of the era for the U.S.— that the U.S. is broke and is latest in the passing parade of the 12 greatest nations since 859 B.C.—that China is poised to be the next greatest nation and will be recognized as such in the next decade.

Enough said!

R. Earl Hadady
hadady@aol.com

The democratic short comings of China described by Philip Pan in your August 23, 2008 interview are interesting. Your comments and questions in the interview revealed that you obviously though that China should be like us.

You forgot to mention that William Simon, Secretary of the Treasury (1974-1977), in his book, A Time for Truth (ISBN 0-07-057378-6) was appalled that the liabilities of certain trust funds were left out of the U.S. Budget (specifically see p. 91). These 4 omissions from the budget have now grown to over $20 trillion in net liabilities—that these net liabilities are growing about $1trillion a year —that these net liabilities are in addition to the Public Debt of some $5.4 trillion held by the public—that these enormous debts overshadow the current Gross Domestic Product of some $13 trillion—that our form of government is no panacea—that it is persons like you not revealing the actual U.S. fiscal problems to the public rather than facing up them—that these catastrophic problems are now beyond fixing and it spells the end of the era for the U.S.— that the U.S. is broke and is latest in the passing parade of the 12 greatest nations since 859 B.C.—that China is poised to be the next greatest nation and will be recognized as such in the next decade.

Enough said!

R. Earl Hadady
hadady@aol.com

Posted by: Chris: They were just copying what we do..”! Yes, other countries did it...! The children have been used for profit in many ways! The political systems are corrupt. Ours is one of the top! We have been getting “the lip sinc” for years! Such as “read my lips...”, “Invest for the long term”, “Not one penny of insured deposits has ever been lost by a customer...” etc. They do not tell you how much value the currency has lost by “printing press insurance”! Very convenient system for “enrichment, oppression... etc”. “Some people are blind and can see everything, Some have eyes, and are totally blind” !


*********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********

Yes, Chris.

A few years ago I read an article in the Wall Street Journal about a con man named Charles Ponzi. He was credited with inventing the first pyramid scheme.

The article stated when Ponzi was interviewed he was asked how he was able to swindle so many people so easily, his responded, "When a man's mind is concentrated he is blind."

This case of having your mind concentrated to the point of blindness is not anything new. The ancient philosophers new this well. They called it "putting passion before reason." Both these areas of passion and reason where the foundation of much philosophical discussion of ethics and virtue with the ancient Greeks.

They knew when passion rules the mind, that the only job left for reason is that of the subservient task to find cleaver ways to satisfy the passions. When our minds are occupied with too much wreckage of the past, too many problems and complexities and out of control passions then there is little room left in it for reasoning.

We can be blind to what is happening in the US of A if we get too caught up with a passion with minding China's biz as our friend lookinthemirror reminds us. Sure we have to stretch ourselves in many areas as our world has become so complex. But we have to be careful not to stretch ourselves to the breaking point.

I talked about this elsewhere, but will post it here as well for your perusal.

If we wish to get a glimpse into the ideals of what a democratic government is, lets go to the source and see what the US government has to say about it.

http://usinfo.state.gov/products/pubs/whatsdem/whatdm2.htm

But underlying any democratic government, sometimes tough decisions have to be made for the benefit of the whole. This goes back to the question I posed to this blog - do we do the greater good or the greater right?

If we look at the various powers the government has through executive orders, we are pretty much a Democratic, Communist Nation Under God with only the swish of the pen from the president.

Here are just a few of them...

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10990 allows the government to take over all modes of transportation and control of highways and seaports.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10995 allows the government to seize and control the communication media.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10997 allows the government to take over all electrical power, gas, petroleum, fuels and minerals.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10998 allows the government to take over all food resources and farms.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11000 allows the government to mobilize civilians into work brigades under government supervision.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11001 allows the government to take over all health, education and welfare functions.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11002 designates the Postmaster General to operate a national registration of all persons.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11003 allows the government to take over all airports and aircraft, including commercial aircraft.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11004 allows the Housing and Finance Authority to relocate communities, build new housing with public funds, designate areas to be abandoned, and establish new locations for populations.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11005 allows the government to take over railroads, inland waterways and public storage facilities.

http://sonic.net/sentinel/gvcon5.html

What happened to all our individual freedoms with these executive orders?

It was lost long ago in the deluded American dream that believes the individual American can survive on their own.

Without a strong government you guys would be speaking Chinese or Russian. What happened to the personal property of Iraq when the US took it down? Ditto for your homes and McMansions if another country decided to move here.

Now, I am not making excuses for heavy handed tactics of the government, but I just bring this all up to remind us what can happen in a democratic country may not be that much different from what happens in some communist regimes.

Al I can say is if the government gets too out of hand from being drunk with power, sober em up some. Take to the streets and shut America down from coast to coast. Study up how our old friends the hippies did it back in the day. The just suppressive it so it works this time around.

If we citizens would have been organized as engaged citizens, both political conventions could have been given the message loud and clear that we do not want political business a usual in the US and we the people are ready to shut you down if you keep up screwing up...and we will shut you down consistently and by any means necessary.

Well, maybe next time astound the country would be more energized. Of course this presupposes we have the gas and the planes will still be flying so we can get to the conventions to voice our disgust about this putrid mess we call the American political system.

Posted by: Chris: They were just copying what we do..”! Yes, other countries did it...! The children have been used for profit in many ways! The political systems are corrupt. Ours is one of the top! We have been getting “the lip sinc” for years! Such as “read my lips...”, “Invest for the long term”, “Not one penny of insured deposits has ever been lost by a customer...” etc. They do not tell you how much value the currency has lost by “printing press insurance”! Very convenient system for “enrichment, oppression... etc”. “Some people are blind and can see everything, Some have eyes, and are totally blind” !


*********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********

Yes, Chris.

A few years ago I read an article in the Wall Street Journal about a con man named Charles Ponzi. He was credited with inventing the first pyramid scheme.

The article stated when Ponzi was interviewed he was asked how he was able to swindle so many people so easily, his responded, "When a man's mind is concentrated he is blind."

This case of having your mind concentrated to the point of blindness is not anything new. The ancient philosophers new this well. They called it "putting passion before reason." Both these areas of passion and reason where the foundation of much philosophical discussion of ethics and virtue with the ancient Greeks.

They knew when passion rules the mind, that the only job left for reason is that of the subservient task to find cleaver ways to satisfy the passions. When our minds are occupied with too much wreckage of the past, too many problems and complexities and out of control passions then there is little room left in it for reasoning.

We can be blind to what is happening in the US of A if we get too caught up with a passion with minding China's biz as our friend lookinthemirror reminds us. Sure we have to stretch ourselves in many areas as our world has become so complex. But we have to be careful not to stretch ourselves to the breaking point.

I talked about this elsewhere, but will post it here as well for your perusal.

If we wish to get a glimpse into the ideals of what a democratic government is, lets go to the source and see what the US government has to say about it.

http://usinfo.state.gov/products/pubs/whatsdem/whatdm2.htm

But underlying any democratic government, sometimes tough decisions have to be made for the benefit of the whole. This goes back to the question I posed to this blog - do we do the greater good or the greater right?

If we look at the various powers the government has through executive orders, we are pretty much a Democratic, Communist Nation Under God with only the swish of the pen from the president.

Here are just a few of them...

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10990 allows the government to take over all modes of transportation and control of highways and seaports.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10995 allows the government to seize and control the communication media.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10997 allows the government to take over all electrical power, gas, petroleum, fuels and minerals.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10998 allows the government to take over all food resources and farms.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11000 allows the government to mobilize civilians into work brigades under government supervision.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11001 allows the government to take over all health, education and welfare functions.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11002 designates the Postmaster General to operate a national registration of all persons.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11003 allows the government to take over all airports and aircraft, including commercial aircraft.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11004 allows the Housing and Finance Authority to relocate communities, build new housing with public funds, designate areas to be abandoned, and establish new locations for populations.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 11005 allows the government to take over railroads, inland waterways and public storage facilities.

http://sonic.net/sentinel/gvcon5.html

What happened to all our individual freedoms with these executive orders?

It was lost long ago in the deluded American dream that believes the individual American can survive on their own.

Without a strong government you guys would be speaking Chinese or Russian. What happened to the personal property of Iraq when the US took it down? Ditto for your homes and McMansions if another country decided to move here.

Now, I am not making excuses for heavy handed tactics of the government, but I just bring this all up to remind us what can happen in a democratic country may not be that much different from what happens in some communist regimes.

Al I can say is if the government gets too out of hand from being drunk with power, sober em up some. Take to the streets and shut America down from coast to coast. Study up how our old friends the hippies did it back in the day. The just suppressive it so it works this time around.

If we citizens would have been organized as engaged citizens, both political conventions could have been given the message loud and clear that we do not want political business a usual in the US and we the people are ready to shut you down if you keep up screwing up...and we will shut you down consistently and by any means necessary.

Well, maybe next time astound the country would be more energized. Of course this presupposes we have the gas and the planes will still be flying so we can get to the conventions to voice our disgust about this putrid mess we call the American political system.

“They were just copying what we do..”! Yes, other countries did it...! The children have been used for profit in many ways! The political systems are corrupt. Ours is one of the top! We have been getting “the lip sinc” for years! Such as “read my lips...”, “Invest for the long term”, “Not one penny of insured deposits has ever been lost by a customer...” etc. They do not tell you how much value the currency has lost by “printing press insurance”! Very convenient system for “enrichment, oppression... etc”. “Some people are blind and can see everything, Some have eyes, and are totally blind” !

Well, Chris, doing the lip sinc thing is nothing. The Chinese were just copying what we do in the US.

This type of thing is more troubling...

http://aftermathnews.wordpress.com/2008/08/25/admission-of-organ-harvesting-in-china-undeniable-say-investigators/

http://www.csmonitor.com/2006/0803/p08s02-comv.html

One World One Dream
-2008 Olympic Theme

Watch with your own eyes:
Young and Restless in China

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/youngchina/

BTW, the world is worried, and hoping for America to find her way again sooner and better. It is up to us!

Do you mean capitalism or corporatism? They are not the same but unfortunately, the distinction is lost on many people.

“The real 6 years old vocalist that sang “Ode to the motherland” pronounced insufficiently adorable by the Chinese government” was denied the proper placed and honor she so rightfully deserved in the “WORLD AMPHITHEATER of 2008!” Denied the right to enjoy the happiness and talent she has. Performed from cage for enrichment, enjoyment of the EMPERORS and ARISTOCRATS of the WORLD! The same rules have been applied by VETO power of Greece government to deny the MACEDONIA to become member of the United Europe unless they change their name! They refuse to returned the land occupied by military expansion! Though I care for the people of other country I do care first and the most for the people in USA!
“The Democratic Convention will be so much hot air...” I agree!
THEY SPEAK of CHANGE with a TWISTED TONGUE and YET appointed
a “status quo veteran of 35 years”. Someone said, “NOTHING CHANGES in
WASHINGON”, was correct!
HOW CAN WE FIX IT?
There are several ways recommended how to “FIX IT!
Some believe by revolution!
Some by printing press monetary policy!
Some by demonstration!
Some by military power!
Some by electing new figure had – new president!
Some by amending the tax code!
Some by their religious believe!
Some by justice system that is defending a dead constitution; A system of
adapted laws to fit the interest of their particular political party etc.!

Some of us believe by “AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION”; EMPOWER the PEOPLE TO “EXPRES THEIR WILL” on ALL ISUES!
The Constitution should have been address and amended long before these crises!
Changes should not have been made by adapting new LAWS!
AMENDMENS to CONSTITUTION worked before and should work again!
THE POWER SHOULD BE IN the PEOPLE and NOT in the dysfunctional CONGRESS and SENAT that conveyed their power to the PRESIDENT!

The ISSUES were well stated and they are:
CONSTITUTIONAL CRISES
WAR
HEALTH CARE
NATIONAL DEBT $10.6 trillion dollars
ECONONY -ECONOMIC OPPRESSION-DEPRESSION- POVERTY
SOCIAL SECURITY
PRINTING PRESS DEVALUATION of THE CURRENCY
IMIGRATION
JUDICIAL SYSTEM
MILITARY FOREIGN AID... while the NATION is BANCRUPT
TAXES
EARTH ECOLOGY – AIR POLUTION; WATER; OIL
PORK BAREL POJECTS
DEMOCRACY or IMPERIAL DOMINATION
EDUCATION ETC.

A true change is to vote for a third party, to place “ALL ISSUES on the BALLOT”!

Sometimes McCain looks like he is running for government in a regime link China.

Rush asked his listeners to vote for Hillary to cause dissension in the Democratic Party. Rush couldn't care less about winning on the issues. The goal for him is not to win to better America, it's to con America to win.

McCain is following the same strategy:

http://rawstory.com/news/2008/New_McCain_ad_asks_why_Clinton_0824.html

The McCain of 2000 would not vote for the McCain of today. He cut a deal with the you know who. If you can't beat 'em, he said, given up

No mention of FALUN DAFA? Don't know of any organization that documents torture better than this group. Freedom of relgion. Right? As long as its numbers don't compete with party's numbers. But, really, who gives a damn? Off to Walmart. Damn, I hate giving my money to Walmart. But, thats my economic wows.

Now it seems to me that if capitalism and democracy are inextricably linked democracy would lead to capitalism as assuredly as capitalism leads to democracy. We've proven with 6 or 7 years of occupation that democracy cannot be exported (at least not in the domestic form). Both we and the former Soviets repeatedly snuffed out the sprouting of democracy for economic ends. China has a jug of Round-Up in its paws right now.
Well if you're a capitalist in this present day you can consider yourself an invasive and unstopable weed. As for those of us who are democrats, our ass is grass.

Posted by: Hook Hammer:Dear AW, Slaves in contrary to Chinese did not have the opportunity to develop as human beings. They were denied education and other rights of free people, like ownership - i.e. the essence of capitalism.
I will risk this statement: Chinese have more opportunities to develop and participate in culture then Americans, since participation requires education and affordability. Ergo they can achieve better human development.
In contrary to slaves, they have the same opportunities as other people around. The slave system included incentives to keep slaves separated from other parts of the society, the same way the American capitalism strives to keep most of the population ignorant for the benefit of financial elite, which rules the country.
Financial elite is not the club anybody can join, just like slaves were not able to become free people in any significant number.
To anticipate your response: anybody can join a communist party and advance in ranks.
PS: You should deepen your knowledge on Tibetan history. Are there any current US maps showing Spanish or Mexican teritories or maybe Native American tribal land?

Posted by: Hook Hammer

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I have no argument with most of what you say HH. I am just sharing my thoughts. The Chinese people are free (enough) to do as they like. Far be it from me to save them or Tibet.

I just marvel at all the Free Tibet demonstrations when most of em don't even know Tibet was wiped off the map. They would do better to prepare for peak oil considerations than to keep wasting time on such hopeless things. But we are each free to do as we like. (unless we live in China)

In the US we are still free to choose our companions. Most of us would not choose abusive companions to be around. So, if I had a choice I would not wish to live under the Chinese governments tyranny myself. But if I was stuck in China I would do the best I could.

No doubt much of what Americans view as horrors, the Chinese do not blink an eye at. As I said being whipped once a week is heaven compared to the daily whippings of the old guard Chinese.

Yes, the white man has done many evils to the Indians. I am not making excuses for such things. The Way West DVD chronicles some of the wrongs. It gives some glimpse into the maps in question.

http://www.shoppbs.org/sm-pbs-american-experience-the-way-west-dvd-2pk--pi-2212285.html

Actually there are lots of info on it, check it out yourself. But nothing like modern maps since it happened ages ago.

If Chinese are using that excuse by going back in history to justly the evil they do, then they will no doubt have much ammunition to use. Hopefully mankind has learned that using humans evil past is not a justification of continuing such practices.

But since you brought I up ...where are the Chinese books and DVD's of their history of harms against humanity? Again we would need to have this conversation in the US of A and not in China - if we wished to wake up tomorrow.

But as I told my friend Grady, you don't have to justify yourself or the Chinese to me...work on convincing yourself HH.

I personally believe that a journal should report both good and bad about the society. But I don't really know why all the interviews are always focused on so called "bad" based on American Standard. China is not perfect, but it has been improving significantly.

Dear AW, Slaves in contrary to Chinese did not have the opportunity to develop as human beings. They were denied education and other rights of free people, like ownership - i.e. the essence of capitalism.
I will risk this statement: Chinese have more opportunities to develop and participate in culture then Americans, since participation requires education and affordability. Ergo they can achieve better human development.
In contrary to slaves, they have the same opportunities as other people around. The slave system included incentives to keep slaves separated from other parts of the society, the same way the American capitalism strives to keep most of the population ignorant for the benefit of financial elite, which rules the country.
Financial elite is not the club anybody can join, just like slaves were not able to become free people in any significant number.
To anticipate your response: anybody can join a communist party and advance in ranks.
PS: You should deepen your knowledge on Tibetan history. Are there any current US maps showing Spanish or Mexican teritories or maybe Native American tribal land?

If that is the case LookInTheMirror..maybe we in the US should adopt the oppressive policies of China to boost our satisfaction rates at home? Should we erase the history from the books that we find embarrassing? When we have those that speak out against the pres, should we whisk them away to never been seen again?

The other day in Walmart I picked up a blow up globe of the world and noticed China has wiped Tibet off the face of the map...there is NO TIBET to free when it comes to China's maps. Tibet simply does not exist any longer and it is all Chinese territory as far as they are concerned. And this is how it is with any world map or atlas printed in China.

Sure Chinese people are happy to get that second or third meal each day. But I guess you would get a similar answer from the black slaves that had come from an abusive slave owner and were lucky enough to move to a more egalitarian slave master. They would be doing back flips because they were only whipped once a week instead of daily.

No one can find fault with the Chinese people. They just do the best they can with the gov they have. And we can always find various reports to make the point we wish.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/14/AR2007051401506.html

But, lets put our reports to the side for a moment. I think the bottom line is Americans go to China not because of such wonderful living conditions. They go to China to buy cheap goods so they can make lots of money.

This topic reminds me of someone in another forum that said Arabs love the US of A. Well, Arabs don't love the US, Arabs love the dollars and the protection from the US. And the US does not love Arabs - the US loves Arabs oil. So lets be clear with all this and not beat around the bush.

So it goes with China. They loan us money since we are such a debtor nation. They make much of what is sold in the US "...more than 70 per cent of the commodities sold in Walmart are made in China."

http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/english/doc/2004-11/29/content_395728.htm

If I lived in China none of these conversations we are having could even exist...we may be tortured or our family killed for just having a conversations. And we in America are at least somewhat free that we can speak out when we see a lack of humanity in the world or even in our country.

The business of humanism is 'all our business' if we with to live life at peace. For in the end, your sanity becomes my sanity and my sanity becomes your sanity.

Don't believe this?

Let me illustrate how we all are in this together.

Remember the killings at Virginia Tech?

57 people shot or killed?

A millionaires daughter was a student at Virginia Tech. She was living a happy, carefree life as any millionaires child might do. But one day she ran into Seung-Hui Cho. She was subsequently shot, as some other 56 were. She lived, but is now she is paralyzed.

Seung-Hui Cho's sanity became her sanity...a sanity she lives with for the rest of her life. Seung-Hui Cho's sanity also became the sanity for the other 56 people that shared his thoughts that day.

So it goes with China and Russia, as they have a habit of exporting their 'sanity' to other countries. It is in my interest that what they export will do me no harm. So we speak out against such sickness as long as free speech is part of an Americans right of being...a right the Chinese People have sold off in exchange for 3 meals a day.

Global Attitudes Survey, PEW Research Center 2008

http://pewglobal.org/reports/display.php?ReportID=261

Satisfaction with Economy; Country in right direction.

China:-------82%
Australia:---69%
India:-------65%
Gemany:------53%
Poland:------52%
Russia-------52%
Egypt:-------44%
Brazil:------41%
USA:---------20%

Dear Bill, as your fan, I was like many others above disappointed on your recent interview with Mr.Pan.
First, capitalism and market economy are two different things. The same goes about democracy and capitalism. The American propaganda tries to equal all of them, but there is even great difference between American and European capitalism.
Anticommunist propaganda is based on economic model introduced by Stalin during WWII called war economy. It never changed in USSR after that, but better economic model was used in Hungary in 70s. Market economy was reintroduced to China after "cultural revolution".
Second, China supports two system model, where some (a few) provinces called special zones (ones visited most often by western visitors) have capitalist system in contrast with the whole country, which follows socialist model (there is no communism anywhere yet).
It would be good to ask your guest what are the differences in societal organization characteristic for China. Mr. Pan had to admit sometimes the truth ("live is improving for ALL Chinese people" - can you say that about Americans?).
In most of China (forget about special zones) do they have free all level education? Do they have free health care? Do they have to worry about losing their jobs or being evicted? Do they have to worry about paying their utility bills?
How many people in US are worried about freedom of speech? And how many are worried about falling to poverty?
Forget about US, ask this question in Latin American countries or India. This would be more fair, because of developmental stage differences.

Posted by: Arun Patel: China's ECONOMIC success is due to Chinese Capitalism -controlled capitalism in the only interest of economy growth at any cost.
China’s explosive growth will capitulate, if the western democracy is adapted.
The success of Chinese growth is due to their system communism –now controlled capitalism. Once democratized process, it will create welfare for workers, worker rights and other good things goes with human rights in democratic society. Thus Chinese goods will not be competitive in the world especially United States as we are Empire of Consumptions.
As world is becoming more material and consume more than it can afford, only Chinese style system can provide the goods at the price world can consume.
Once human and worker rights implemented, they are no longer competitive.
There are no secrets of China’s explosive growth.
It’s unlimited pool of labor, no worker rights and controlled capitalism.
Arun Patel

Posted by: chinchero: China is not perfect but it is not up to self-anointed white or honorary white messiahs to tell her and its people what to do. I am appalled and outraged at all these self-righteous comments that assume that the US or the Western world know what is best for China and its people. See what happened to Iraq

*********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********

Never thought about that AP. If we get China to be another US and they start giving he workers rights and income raises, benefits, pensions and the like they would have no other choice than to raise the cost of their good exorbitantly. So, their products will skyrocket and we in the US will have runaway inflation in the from all the high priced 'human rights' inflated goods from China.

Maybe chinchero is right with our brazen assumption that the US or the Western world know what is best for China and its people?

We liked the idea that China turned pink and dropped the take over the world notion. But now we are sorry that they suck down so much crude.

Do I wish to keep China in the dark with kindness and offering some affordable human rights just to keep their good low priced?

No, I wont go so far as to say that honor must die where the interest lies with my own thoughts on this subject.

Sure, human rights may cost some money chinchero. But showing a little kindness and humanity to another is almost free.

China doesn't need to be a carbon copy of the US with high wages, unions and the like. But they also do not need to shoot those that disagree with China's government in the head with a bullet and then send the bill for the bullet to the family.

What do you think will happen to all those cheap goods China exports once the diesel to power the monster cargo ships is gone chinchero?

Once the crude starts to dry up, things in China as well as the rest of the high population countries will go downhill fast.

If China wants one world, then make a world that has some humanity in it, where the whole world wont mind living with each other as we all powerdown to a new existence on this planet.

...and remember China...hiding behavior is a signpost of dis-ease.

My previous comment was about the Andrew J. Bacevich interview.

Great job Mr Moyers, my hat is off to you and Mr. Andrew J. Bacevich.

Peace

5 Star interview, millions should watch.

Peace

Posted by: py

China is sacrificing their/its soul for materialism. Has capitolism "saved" the West? It certainly poisons everthing it comes in contact with. The more important question- will China (or any nation with industry) survive the poisons it gladly accepts in the name of "the market"?

*********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********

Yes, little argument here. But where Is the perfect system for dealing with 300 million to a billion people? Was china's old Red system more perfect than the current Pink one?

We all know what is wrong about our countries, but is there anything right?

And if they are ALL wrong, then what is the right we have in mind to replace the wrong with?

Cronwell use to say as practical advice that we should not leave one job before we have obtained another. And the same advice goes for switching governments.

There are basically 3 modes of society and government in our world that would be applicable for the billions we have in it.

They are:

Red - old line communists

Pink - Socialism comes to mind in this category. A combination of communists and capitalism...a la modern day Russia and China as examples.(albeit imperfect exapmles.)

Blue - shades of various degrees of capitalism.

So out of these 3 types of governments, how would you mix and match the best parts of each to form your ideal republic

Sure Dan and Al we are not perfect, but when compared to China we fit the bill of a democracy more so than they do. So lets forget perfection for a moment or we can never have this discussion if you only seek perfect examples.

I think PY is onto something: we have traded capitalism for capitol-ism, neither of which is democracy.

When all you ever do is what you've already done and
when all you are is what you've already been, then
... either you die or you re-invent yourself.

I wonder which it will be?

I liked the sly grin on Bill's face when he asked if there was any communism left in the "Communist Party."

When Bill was questioning about working conditions and in other incidental comments Mr. Pan insisted that although workers conditions were bad, the workers were better off than they would have been without the jobs.

That's like saying a woman who didn't resist her knife wielding rapest was better off for going along.

"Better off" is always relative to something. They might be better off than staying in their immediate previous conditions, but how those conditions might have been different absent the race-to-the-bottom dynamic of predatory captitalism?

Although capitalism has been the dominant and surviving economic model of the last two centuries, it is in the process of destroying itself, not from outside invasions, but from its own internal dynamics.

As Russia, China, South America and the EU have adopted and developed capitalist economic strategies, the laissez-faire savage capitalism of the last century has been changed in each case to reflect the politics and cultural dictates of each region.

Capitalism and socialism are not mutually exclusive and perhaps may work very efficiently together. In a country as large and diverse as China, democracy would certainly encourage break away nationalistic movements. It is difficult to see the CCP allowing enough dissent for any type of multiple party system.

But there is no doubt capitalism is working well for the Chinese economy. Perhaps a new form of capitalism emerges from the dust of our current financial meltdown: socialized capitalism.

Both are after all dependent upon control of the media and use propaganda to motive and mollify the people. Democracy as can be seen in the West, may very well be just an illusion kept alive to maintain consumer apetites for shareholder profit. There seems to be little difference now between the 'repressiveness' of China's communist regime and the repressiveness of American Homeland Security brand of democracy.

when enough chinese have enough cars and enough time to take enough trips out on the open road of their vast country, they will start to think for themselves....

Let's define terms:
democracy is consensus government which reflects the will of the people who give their permission to be governed; it is a bottom up government which depends on foresight and humanism.
Capitalism is antithetical; it is top down and tyrannical in every respect and views its wage-laborers as slaves with no profit motivated interest in the products they produce for their masters.
The US is not now nor has it ever been a democracy; there is no democracy anywhere in the world (except perhaps for Mondragon which is perhaps more of an anarchy).
Athens in ancient Greece was not a democracy it was at best an elitist republic as described by Plato.
So stop bandying euphemisms and get down to the truth of it.

Those who continue to talk about our "democracY" seem to live in a world of fanciful tales. When the Constitution was written, women, nor slaves, were allowed to vote. Many died and many changes, (Amendments) to that document had to be made before these things were permitted. Recall also that the people we stoll the land from--the aborigines--were not even mentioned in the Conctitution.

I'm not sure what the question means, i.e. will capitalism lead to democracy for China? A democracy, to me, means a place where every one has the same voice in what ever may be ready to occurr in the place. In this country the Plutarchs, who have the bucks, also are the ones who run the country. I do hope that China does not end up the same way.

Dan Kanoza

Pam Rose took some of the wind out of my sails, but my question, anyway, is, "What has capitalism brought America; certainly not democracy" Andrew Bacevish says we have two organizations that give themselves different names, Republicans and Democrats, but in reality, we have a one party state, with a congress only concerned with its remaining in power. Probably the real reason Pelosi and Reid won't go along with impeaching these criminals. I live here in Germany having retired from the DoD after 40 years in Intelligence and CT, most of them here. The differences between what we once were, and what we have become can't be hidden any more. I never had to defend my country to my European contacts with much persuasive conviction before because I believed we were right; until this regime came along. Now, I find I can't defend us any more, because there is no more truth to tell. What a tragedy!!!

China is sacrificing their/its soul for materialism. Has capitolism "saved" the West? It certainly poisons everthing it comes in contact with. The more important question- will China (or any nation with industry) survive the poisons it gladly accepts in the name of "the market"?

China is not perfect but it is not up to self-anointed white or honorary white messiahs to tell her and its people what to do. I am appalled and outraged at all these self-righteous comments that assume that the US or the Western world know what is best for China and its people. See what happened to Iraq.

China's ECONOMIC success is due to Chinese Capitalism -controlled capitalism in the only interest of economy growth at any cost.
China’s explosive growth will capitulate, if the western democracy is adapted.
The success of Chinese growth is due to their system communism –now controlled capitalism. Once democratized process, it will create welfare for workers, worker rights and other good things goes with human rights in democratic society. Thus Chinese goods will not be competitive in the world especially United States as we are Empire of Consumptions.
As world is becoming more material and consume more than it can afford, only Chinese style system can provide the goods at the price world can consume.
Once human and worker rights implemented, they are no longer competitive.
There are no secrets of China’s explosive growth.
It’s unlimited pool of labor, no worker rights and controlled capitalism.
Arun Patel

"China pays labor $120 per month; how is this going to bring them in line with other capatilist nations?"

The answer is it isn't, it's intended to set the market price for labor everywhere !

China pays labor $120 per month; how is this going to bring them in line with other capatilist nations?

It was mentioned that average labor makes $120 per month. How can any nation paying fair wages that allow for a decent life compete with this form of capatalism? GM has an add that says the average person can buy a vehicle for the same price as a GM employee. The problem is most Americans make about half what GM employees make per hour. Who is looking out for those that fall under $35,000 a year. In America or China this group is lumped in with those making mega bucks to get the average wage and it does not give a fair picture to those who need to look at the results of the high cost of living and the devistation that this mistake is costing millions of people.

It's obvious that Mr. Pan was processed through our current educational system that has propagated so many journalists that subscribe to the school of group think, more akin to a politician than a journalist. This allows them to view every situation through a grey filter that neither condemns nor praises; a safe position that pleases almost everyone while relieving them of the burdensome integrity and passion that is required to root out the underlying turmoil that often tells the real story. It was obvious that Bill was attempting to use his trademark interview techniques to peal back the layers and expose Mr. Pan’s true feelings concerning his native culture and the assault by so many external forces that have not improved the conditions of life for so many Chinese citizens. Having literally sucked the life out of the U.S., the infestation of unregulated Capitalism has descended on yet another culture and set about imprisoning it’s inhabitance to improve the bottom line for the corporate monarchs. As Bill commented, the few internal winners never have any complaints and are always used to legitimize the status quo.

All this pillaging has also emboldened the faith based organizations to descend on the people of China in ever greater numbers and convince them that their desperation will eventually be rewarded if they just continue to serve the current system; this explains why the repressive government isn’t rushing to throw them out of the country. Recalls the complicity of Google, yet another corporate player that was willing to capitulate to the Chinese government, and sustain a policy of denial of free speech, to get a profitable seat at the table.

So many stories that remain untold as personal freedom wanes and Capitalism takes it’s place as the international religion of the planet.

Hi Bill,

My husband and I enjoy your show.

Thank you for your guts!

He is a former Marine, turned writer and photographer.

For a fresh perspective, you might enjoy checking out his website. The Chinese have.

stephenwisephotography.com

Krystyna Wise

Posted by: me

I think it's amusing to read so many comments from people who have obviously not even ever VISITED China, much less lived there, as I have.

The government has totally indoctrinated its citizens to the point where they don't even question them and worship them unconditionally. Really, that's the way it is.

And it's all about money. When people have fat wallets, they just put their heads down, hop into their Mercedes, throw their Prada bags into the back seat, and keep moving.

Anyone who has any ideological idea otherwise is a fool.

I have seen it for myself.

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Well, if that is the case, let me apologize and correct my previous post...China has a MASSIVE hard-on for the American dream.

I think it's amusing to read so many comments from people who have obviously not even ever VISITED China, much less lived there, as I have.

The government has totally indoctrinated its citizens to the point where they don't even question them and worship them unconditionally. Really, that's the way it is.

And it's all about money. When people have fat wallets, they just put their heads down, hop into their Mercedes, throw their Prada bags into the back seat, and keep moving.

Anyone who has any ideological idea otherwise is a fool.

I have seen it for myself.


Nice interview with Mr. Pan. My wife said you were very articulate Mr. Pan.

China and Russia tried to support its people though a sustainable, self sufficient manner when they ere totally RED. Now that they are PINK, they are much more successful at support,

So the world exchanged the dread of communist domination for that of the problem of more capitalism and consumption. But as Taoists tell us...fleas come with the dog.

America now wishes China and India had stayed backwards. But as long as the crude holds out, they can't go backwards once they got a taste of the American dream.

So the US tells the world - "Don't do as we do...do as we say. Stop using up all the fossil fuel China and India...and leave all the depletion of fossil fuels to us professionals in the US of A!"

This is American hubris at its best.

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I didn't know the exact definition of communism or socialism myself when Mr. Pan was put on the spot from Mr. Moyers.

"...A system of government in which the state plans and controls the economy and a single, often authoritarian (self perpetuating) party holds power, claiming to make progress toward a higher social order in which all goods are equally shared by the people."

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Or maybe China has gone backwards from Chairman Mao's dream and become more of a socialist country?

"...a stage of society in Marxist theory transitional between capitalism and communism and distinguished by unequal distribution of goods and pay according to work done."

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I think China will be headed for problems as Peak Oil starts to rear its ugly head. China has triple our pop and has a hard-on for the American Dream. We can see this with China confiscating farm land to build more monstrosities of architecture on. Unfortunately for us, the dream is turning into a nightmare as our crude supply dries up.

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"When the sun rises I go to work,
When the sun goes down, I take my rest,
I dig the well from which I drink,
I farm the soil that yields my food,
I share creation, Kings can do no more."

Ancient Chinese, 2500 BC

After being bombarded with commercials on network tv, I turned to PBS last night and was relieved to witness an intelligent, peaceable conversation on Bill Moyers Journal with Mr. Moyers and Mr. Pan.
On the Ms Pittsfield Topix Profile Page I have put God and Communism...under the heading 'I believe in...' When I discussed my declaration of belief with a rightwing Christian friend of mine she countered with all of the negative facts pertaining to Communism as practiced to date.
I defended my belief by stating the simple definition of the word-Communism-Community of goods as a social system, with the necessary provisions for labor and distribution;movement advocating need for dictatorship of the proletariat.
In my opinion we have, right here in America, dictatorship of the proletariat, though it is conducted through the deliberate unconscious mind manipulation of the poor by the rich by use of the Media and marketing of unnecessary, destructive products.
My discussion with my friend began to get heated, and we parted ways before I was able to attack the corruption of the words Christian, Jesus Christ and Church...

Probably not. But if we don't find a way to reign in the abuses of our economic system by wealthy, privileged wolves, capitalism may bring socialism to the U.S.

Probably not. But if we don't find a way to reign in the abuses of our economic system by wealthy, privileged wolves, capitalism may bring socialism to the U.S.

Bill Moyers’ comments and Philip Pan’s discussion of China’s political structure, economic growth, justice system, and control of dissent made me think: How China now appears to resemble a pre-1980’s U.S. In some instances, even current similarities exist.

Consider both societies’ view of protests. U.S. Labor Organizers were beaten up by thugs, killed and clubbed by company and city police, and jailed. We have TV reports and movies of civil rights protesters being water-cannoned, set upon by snarling attack dogs under control of police, and dragged bloody and handcuffed off somewhere. The national guard was called out and killed students walking to class at Kent State, assuming they were protesters. The arrests and photographing of persons for retribution during the Chicago and, most current, the New York political conventions. The blacklisting of suspected “communists”. The Denver setting up of razor wired cages to hold protesters. A St. Paul demonstrator zone out of site from a Republican Convention (for an appearance of a “joyous” event?) Yet, our media and politicians judge China’s Tinanmen Square reaction and its tight control of Olympic protesters as shameful violations of human rights that U.S. Democracy has “always” upheld.

Consider Chinese youth withdrawn from school to get employed for wages in factories that compete to produce the lowest priced product ordered by American Companies. The “low wages” to pay for family taxes are an improvement of the worker’s condition, although they live in crowded “dormitories” and under strict codes of conduct. My father and uncle, with less that 7th grade schooling, were sent to CCC and had their money sent home to pay for their families house and necessities. We had sweat factories. Piecemeal enterprises still exist. The North obtained cotton from the South for its industries. Unions were considered Red, a cause for increased prices/decreased profits (even now), and against Democracy. Child labor laws were enacted on random basis. Migrant families still work our fields, for fewer wage than “Americans” would work, to keep our products cheaper, for consumption or export. We even have similar-to-Chinese labor factories on one of our territories that Congressmen visit and praise as an efficient American enterprise. Who build our railroads and in what “human rights” condition did they live?

China’s “Communist Party” redefines its worker rights mandates as now proven by increased prosperity through economic development. U.S. Democracy is redefined as superior capitalism, with a Trade Agreement that takes precedence over every law enacted or to be enacted for benefit of citizens by a democratically voted government. China confiscates property to build the Olympic structures. U.S. and States confiscate property, for less than value, to build upscale shopping malls, or in New Orleans, upscale residences or tourist attractions. What happened to the people in both countries who no longer have a place to live?

To me, the similarities make it ludicrous for the U.S. espouse its democracy-based emphasis on “human rights” to anyone. It has become a double-speak propagandized, meaningless slogan when we allow our U.S. companies to operate in other countries and our own territories, without enforced U.S. controls over their “human rights” and contracting conduct. These companies represent U.S. democracy and their message lasts for generations. The Ugly American and Paper Tiger still exist.

And in all this, our President advises China to allow free expression of religion. China already experienced this seed when it allowed the first “western” missionaries in. Ships and the contemplated seizing of an empire and culture by competing foreign companies followed them. Perhaps, China’s government took the Presidents’ statement, “under advisement.” Perhaps, not.

Did capitalism bring democracy to America? As far as I can tell, it is doing the exact opposite. In China it will simply solidify totalitarianism, concentrate it in fewer extremely wealthy hands, and export it to the rest of the world, including the US.

Simply put, I don't expect China to become democratic, instead -- since money talks and we all know what walks -- I expect US to become as undemocratic as China. Or worse.

Question in the interview: Is the one party state winning? Yes...for the moment! Much of what I saw and heard in this interview was and is a mirror image of the last 100 yrs or so in the U.S. The struggle what the U.S. is now going through shows, on one hand, the bankruptcy of morals, greed, etc...in business and societal dealings. China has the same problems so there is a very tarnished image underneath.

Bill, You failed to ask an important question: Why in the world is Philip Pan's experience and expertise in covering China going to be lost to us? Why would the Washington Post transfer this China expert to Russia? Who could possibly take his place? I would like an answer to this question. Thank you.

thnks to bill moyers and pbs and mr philip. m chinese and i learned lot bout china and its policy from this todays program. i hope lot of other chinese like me open their eyes and fight back for freedom from this communist suckers.

Phillip Pan, during the interview with Bill Moyers, described an activist applying for a permit to "protest" who "disappeared" shortly after applying, as well as his friend before him. So what happened after that? Have they both been forgotten? Has the Journal followed up and tried to secure their release? Is there anything we Americans can do to help?

a. When Fascism arose, from what systems did it devolve? Democratic systems, usually, wasn't it?

b. Thought experiment: Let's say the Chinese Communist party decreed an end to one-party rule. Let's say they decreed a two-party, rather than parliamentary (loosely speaking), system. Let's say they called them Republicans and Democrats, and everybody would be free to affiliate with one or the other, or to declare themselves independent.

I'm trying to figure out exactly how China would better be able to address the grave and pressing problems of the next five or ten decades with these two parties rather than the current one. I can't see how it would.

If you see how it would, please tell me. Meantime, what interests in the U.S. are served by a report couched in terms which fuel the hysteria here?

Bill, as a fan, this week I am a little dismayed. It is as if you are granting the terms of debate set down by the neocon paranoids. You are very good at finding sociolgically accurate frames for vital subjects. What is slipping when it comes to this topic?

Interesting segments this evening. Cutting from Bill Clinton's "It's the Economy, stupid" from 12 years ago to the variuous US corporations claiming they aren't interested in human rights. Both the Democratic & Republican parties abandoned the people of this country decades ago. While this year may be a refreshing change (not guaranteed, by any means)the refrain of both parties could be summed up as "greater privilages for our elites". Clinton was wrong 12 years ago. What was beneath the country's problems 12 years ago still remains as the underlying problem today. The abuse of power by those in power. The justice system is the prime example. Conviction rates are 95% or more. Trials are only for the rich, with ocassional "show trials" to continue conning the public. Threats and intimidation are the typical tools used to force defendants into submitting to the will of the prosecutor. Corporations, as demonstrated by their comments to you, they couldn't give a damn about human rights...anywhere, anytime, or anyplace...including here in the U.S. Yet both major parties...and most of the smaller ones continue to bow at the altar of corporate power, demanding we genuflect before them as well.. Can we continue as a nation?

Dear Mr. Moyers,
Thank you for presenting Philip Pan. I appreciated his essence and outstanding articulation of his broad knowledge and sensitivities concerning the state of today's China. His clarity of perspective and purity of interpretation, evokes a crystallized definition of the controversial human rights issue, lack of personal empowerment and loss of dignity for the people in China. I am always delighted to find someone to admire, Philip Pan is brilliant and eloquent.

Your poignant question of "What should(can?) we do about China?" in my opinion, is one of the most important questions, facing our world. I would love to see it answered by millions of people, for in our wholeness -are all the answers.

Personally, I see that Self-transformation and raising the consciousness to enlightenment, contributes the maximum amount of illumination to benefit our entire Collective Consciousness.

Thank you for your candid perspectives and generous interview questions with representatives of critical issues.
A. B. A.

It is all about money.

Pure capitalism in China makes Chinese love money more. So much so that puts the West to shame. Look at the Olympics. Chinese wants gold.

Democracy will come only when education and legal system are up to par with the west... which will not be reached in like 20 to 40 years, or if ever.

I'm sick of the news that always report China the worst possible way. I am an American born chinese who learns the "evil" of communism and mainland china for a long time.

For me personally, China is in between a phase between 1890s (US) in side of the country and the 1980s (US) in the cities. It takes time... people may hate it... may despise it... blame the "evil" of the communist party which doesn't practice communism anymore. Chinese people have a unique way in finding solution rather they get help from us or not. Let it play out.

To really help? Stop buying stuff from Wal-Mart. Stop buying things for cheap. Be part of the solution and not be part of the problem.

But then again, for many Americans from reading the news and watching PBS, people who are struggling already don't have the time or the ablitity to discuss the problems of China when they themselves are trying to make day's end. Not to mention our own government system having problems.

It'll be great if we can actually have a hybrid of a socalist/captialist system... but we are all just too greedy.

If capitalism were to bring democracy to china then this would become a new model for governments. The government in china would like the international community to believe that this transition can come about. However, they don't seem to concerned about making their own countrymen believe this. If they were, they would allow people to speak freely about human rights abuses that take place on a daily basis. They would invite citizens into the politburo to openly criticize the governments abuses of power. They would allow this change to be organic(come from within-not from without) as it should be. No...the government appears more interested in being proven right about creating a new model for a path to "sham" or "show democracy" then actually having a free and open democracy where all people are free to dissent without fear of reprisal. The IOC should put in its charter that any nation that does not have a documented "functioning" democracy, then they should not be allowed to host the olympic games. Had the IOC had some kind of "stick" like this then perhaps there could have been "real" change in china, if they truly wanted the games that much. Perhaps the IOC should consider such a measure in the future.

You can lead a capitalist to the library, but you can't make him think - beyond the next quarter.

You can lead a capitalist to the library, but you can't make him think - beyond the next quarter.

Many people will wonder why help the animals when so many people are suffering. I say: pick your cause; this is mine.

Of all the coverage of China, I NEVER see the abuses of animals, and the people who struggle to help them.

In its march to progress, the Chinese are ignoring the rights of their own citizens, the Tibetens, as well as dealing with one of the most genocidal countries in the world, the Sudan. All news is ignoring that the Chinese are also sacrificing their animals to become one of the "great" countries of the world. They told apartment dwellers in Beijing that their animals were diseased, leading frightened pet owners to dump their pets in the street, where they were rounded up and taken to killing camps.

Thousands of cats and dogs are skinned ALIVE and their fur passed off as exotic animals for sale in the U.S. and Europe.

Horse fighting results in the deaths of many stallions after they are goaded into a frenzy by mares and whipped to get into the arena.

Live animals are thrown into arenas to be torn apart by tigers with the smaller animal being "bought" by families who watch with pleasure.

There are numerous more examples of Chinese atrocities regarding their treatment of animals. Why has China been chosen to be the home of the Olympics when their record on human and animal rights is so rampant, widespread and ignored?

China may be on the verge of becoming one of the world's most powerful nations, but that does not make it a great nation. The money in their banks is stained with the blood of human and animal sacrifice. I am speaking up for the most vulnerable and voiceless of all its victims: the animals.

Many people will wonder why help the animals when so many people are suffering. I say: pick your cause; this is mine.

Of all the coverage of China, I NEVER see the abuses of animals, and the people who struggle to help them.

In its march to progress, the Chinese are ignoring the rights of their own citizens, the Tibetens, as well as dealing with one of the most genocidal countries in the world, the Sudan. All news is ignoring that the Chinese are also sacrificing their animals to become one of the "great" countries of the world. They told apartment dwellers in Beijing that their animals were diseased, leading frightened pet owners to dump their pets in the street, where they were rounded up and taken to killing camps.

Thousands of cats and dogs are skinned ALIVE and their fur passed off as exotic animals for sale in the U.S. and Europe.

Horse fighting results in the deaths of many stallions after they are goaded into a frenzy by mares and whipped to get into the arena.

Live animals are thrown into arenas to be torn apart by tigers with the smaller animal being "bought" by families who watch with pleasure.

There are numerous more examples of Chinese atrocities regarding their treatment of animals. Why has China been chosen to be the home of the Olympics when their record on human and animal rights is so rampant, widespread and ignored?

China may be on the verge of becoming one of the world's most powerful nations, but that does not make it a great nation. The money in their banks is stained with the blood of human and animal sacrifice. I am speaking up for the most vulnerable and voiceless of all its victims: the animals.

Many people will wonder why help the animals when so many people are suffering. I say: pick your cause; this is mine.

Of all the coverage of China, I NEVER see the abuses of animals, and the people who struggle to help them.

In its march to progress, the Chinese are ignoring the rights of their own citizens, the Tibetens, as well as dealing with one of the most genocidal countries in the world, the Sudan. All news is ignoring that the Chinese are also sacrificing their animals to become one of the "great" countries of the world. They told apartment dwellers in Beijing that their animals were diseased, leading frightened pet owners to dump their pets in the street, where they were rounded up and taken to killing camps.

Thousands of cats and dogs are skinned ALIVE and their fur passed off as exotic animals for sale in the U.S. and Europe.

Horse fighting results in the deaths of many stallions after they are goaded into a frenzy by mares and whipped to get into the arena.

Live animals are thrown into arenas to be torn apart by tigers with the smaller animal being "bought" by families who watch with pleasure.

There are numerous more examples of Chinese atrocities regarding their treatment of animals. Why has China been chosen to be the home of the Olympics when their record on human and animal rights is so rampant, widespread and ignored?

China may be on the verge of becoming one of the world's most powerful nations, but that does not make it a great nation. The money in their banks is stained with the blood of human and animal sacrifice. I am speaking up for the most vulnerable and voiceless of all its victims: the animals.

I am revolted that you would do the Bush administration's dirty work, hypocritically criticizing China when Bush and his Capitalist cronies are instituting the same totalitarian system in our nation. Do we have free speech, the right of protest? Do we have the right to organized labor? Do we havethe right to a trial, under the law? The worst of the Chinese system is either already here or coming soon to your neighborhood, park or home. And even worse, while the Chinese are on their way up, we are on the way down.

The southern masters had capitalism mastered: They vertically integrated labor as a wholly owned and controlled factor. (It was just like Duke Energy owning the strip mines and building new coal plants, heavenly.)But someone started teaching labor to read, and told them about "Freedom Land." If this would ever happen in China the American establishment would undergo great peril. If you love Amerika you will write the big importers (Microsoft, Dell, GE, Walmart... and so on) encouraging them to reinforce "The Great Firewall." It is only in this way that our "way o' life" can be preserved. (Dub Bush agrees!)Let's fight freedom over there so we won't have to fight it here!

I find it ironic that Mr. Moyers is doing a show about how "free market capitalism" is marginally improving life for many Chinese; while here in the US, as the first segment of his show depicted it is slowly eroding our economy and our freedom. Let's here it for fascism...

Well, maybe not the "only" way...but it's a good start.

The reporting in this episode is just what is needed if capitalism is in fact to change China. As the show alluded, many of the American merchants in China (WalMart), and even American-based media (NBC/GE), benefit from the human rights abuses and oppression of the fascist Chinese government.

The only solution is to expose these arrangements so that the public, internationally and especially in America, have the information they need to change the situation.

For instance, all of the major search engines aid the Chinese government in censoring the Chinese people's search results. This is simply reprehensible, and can probably be fixed by an act of Congress.

Bravo, Moyers.

--M

I worked a year and a half at a local J. C. Penney outlet. I struggled to get breaks and worked for a low wage, I endured a schedule that sometimes went for six or seven days in a row (was told that these days were in different weeks). Work can be awful her.

And the company paid me less that I earned per hour forty years ago.

Well (natural) law has a long history as a restraint on tyranny, and legislatures grew out of their initial function as courts, but lawyers unfortunately do not always, or even very often, show much respect for it.

Didn't bring democracy to the United States of America--why does anyone think it will in
China?

Mr. Moyers: another extremely valuable piece of TV journalism, on China this evening (22 Aug 08). But, please, what were you doing watching Olympic Beach Volleyball? More to the point, wearing a T-shirt made in China!! There are numerous organizations you can locate on the WWW which will sell you 'socially responsible' T-shirts and many other items.

Bill,

You mentioned the often terrible working conditions in China. However, terrible working conditions exist in the U.S. as well. One example: slaughterhouses. In the U.S. the abuses of citizens come from corporations, and our government looks the other way while corporations cover their abuses up. How are we (the U.S.) so much better?

If everybody is saying that "It's no use, we can't win" then clam up and wait for things to happen.

We have to separate the political system from the economic system in this country, the Capitalist have blurred the lines to discourage well meaning citizens from attempts to decouple one from the other.

Being a Constitutional Democracy where all citizens are given certain rights and freedoms, we also had to develop a set of laws to protect each citizen’s rights from encroachment by other citizens and groups.

Thomas Jefferson warned us about attempts to create a central banking system that would give the moneyed interests (Capitalists) control of our system through the creation of a system of credit; needless to say we ignored his sage advice. Thomas Jefferson also warned us about allowing the lawyers to take control of our government and pass laws to benefit their private self-interests and those of the moneyed interests. Currently, every third member of Congress holds a law degree, far from the intentions of the founding fathers to have a Congressional Membership that reflected the average American community.

We went wrong when we ignored the advice of our founders and ceded control of our government to the Capitalists con men. An infestation that is all most impossible to eliminate !

Our democracy (USA) as set up by the founding fathers, did not forsee the evolution of capitalism into the form it takes today; it dominates most political entities on the planet. Democracy is extinct, as lovely as an idea of socialism seemed to be but unable to withstand greed and power-hungry war mongers. Would but they play chess instead.

Trade promoting democracy in China? If a religious friend next door gives me a tomato for a bell pepper, does that convert me?

Capitalism breeds oligarchy; democracy is extinct.

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