The political rhetoric directed at our health care system, economy, entitlement programs and taxes has literally driven a wedge into the heart of debate and common sense. No longer is there a fulcrum of compromise between Democrats and Republicans, rich and poor or capitalist and socialist. The balance of power has teetered far to the right, leaving the left and the nation as we once knew it sitting helplessly in the political air of uncertainty.
Economists have recently reported that by the year 2016, China will have the world’s largest economy. Overtaking the United States will not only crown them as the number one country on the planet, it will allow them to empirically demonstrate the successful pragmatic unity of communism — a one-political-party system — compared to the division and stagnation of a two-party or multiparty system of democracy.
The People’s Republic of China was formally established in 1949 by Mao Zedong. A communist, Mao defeated Chiang Kai-shek in a civil war. He eliminated the feudal system and established a socio-military communist state before he died in 1976.
Political and economic reforms were initiated after the death of Mao by the visionary Deng Xiaoping. He proposed the reunification of China, which meant it would become a “one country, two systems” nation. That ideology would change the political power, economic wealth and social face of the world without firing a gun, dropping a bomb or attempting to colonize the Arab world.
Xiaoping, knowing the 99-year lease of Hong Kong to the United Kingdom would expire in 1997, determined that the mainland of China would continue its socialist system but Macao, Taiwan and Hong Kong would maintain their own political systems and capitalist economies. So why was that so important?
The Chinese leader knew that politically, communism didn’t work combined with a socialist economy. But he did know the one-party system would thrive using a capitalist economy. Rather than admitting that publicly, he would use Hong Kong’s capitalist economy and prosperity 25 years later as his fulcrum to advance communism and the dominance of China in the 21st century. Now that’s a visionary.
The benefits of a one-party system, or a “people’s party,” are obvious. Rhetoric is replaced by substance and government makes hard decisions for the good of all the people without approval from a lobbyist, campaign contributor or a special interest group.
A multi-party system would never have approved the Three Gorges Dam. Opposed by many because it relocated more than 1 million people and covered archeological sites, it increased shipping lanes on the Yangtze River and prevented annual flooding downstream. Today, it is the largest hydro-electric generating plant in the world and benefits the entire country.
China is the world leader in high-speed rail commercial service on conventional lines. Traveling at 217 miles per hour, more than 600 million passengers have traveled by high-speed rail since its inception. Its magnetic levitation rail system, thanks to generous funding from the Chinese government’s economic stimulus program, is being expanded. By the year 2015, China will have 16,000 miles of high speed track. The United States has none.
In our democracy it would have taken 100 years to build the dam. High-speed rail is still a shadow of the imagination lost in a dream somewhere in the middle of political rhetoric and reality.
In 1978, China established the one child per family policy to remedy environmental, economic and social problems. Over the last 31 years it prevented 400 million births. As unpopular it seems to be to us, a 2008 Pew research center survey found that 76 percent of the Chinese population supports the policy.
In our present Republican-dominated, theocratic democracy, we could all starve to death before government would even consider restricting the right to life — unless you’re a terminally ill senior citizen.
On the surface, it seems Xiaoping was right. The two-party political system that divides our democracy might actually be the wedge between collective prosperity and individual opportunities. It appears that democracy is better suited for socialism. But is the one-party unity of communism the political fulcrum for capitalism and prosperity for all nations?
By 2016, China could own the majority of our debt. While we are debating high-speed rail and the aesthetics of wind turbines in the middle of the desert, China will continue to grow as the number one nation in the world economically, politically and strategically.
Not to worry. Together we’ll stand, divided we’ll fall. But thanks to our divided democracy this nation could slowly fall beneath the red horizon to the east and become the United States of China.
David Farside is a Sparks resident and political activist. The polemics of his articles can be discussed at firstname.lastname@example.org. His website is www.thefarsidechronicles.com.