Political Philosophy

West's critique of China has deep roots

Marx warned that the Chinese would shake the world when they awoke from their "hereditary stupidity".

Is the Chinese state a dictatorship or an enlightened meritocracy? The once-in-a-decade leadership transition in Beijing has raised this question.

Wednesday, 14 November, 2012, 7:21am 14 comments

Legacy of distrust through the ages

Confucian theory cites trust as the key to good society and governance.

A China editor once remarked that it makes perfect sense for the Communist Party to go big on Confucianism. "When it comes to control, communism and Confucianism have a lot in common," he said.

29 Oct 2012 - 1:41am 1 comment

Using the past to speculate on China's future

Using the past to speculate on China's future

The title of this work is somewhat deceptive for it's only really in the last couple of chapters that we get into the meat of China going "into its second rise". The bulk of the book is a political, economic and ideological history of the nation.

17 Sep 2012 - 10:01am

Parents fork out small fortunes to give their children a taste of the world

Many young pupils return more keen to study in the West.

There is a Chinese saying that those who seek wisdom should "read 10,000 books and travel 10,000 miles".

While one could easily spend a lifetime accomplishing the first task, many affluent mainland parents are increasingly choosing to put their children on the path to scholarship by sending them overseas for a season.

2 Sep 2012 - 3:23am

Time to give up national education

It's easy for people who have lived normal lives to tell their life stories. It's far more difficult for individuals who have been traumatised or violated to give an unbiased account of their lives. As it is with people, so it is with nations. Modern Chinese history has been one of foreign invasions, civil war, famines, massacres and totalitarian state terror.

24 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do?

Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do? by Michael Sandel Allen Lane (e-book)

22 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Judicial review cases in sharp fall

The number of applications for permission to lodge a judicial review last year dropped by a fifth from a peak figure of 149 cases in 2005.

Benny Tai Yiu-ting, law professor at University of Hong Kong, who compiled the figures for a new book on judicial reviews and good governance, describes the sharp decrease as 'remarkable'.

19 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Freedom and China not incompatible

It is a fight China does not want. But many western intellectuals and policymakers are already baying for blood. Somehow, Islamic terrorism has proved inadequate for that role, and so the West is going back to confront its old communist foes by giving them new, though no less threatening, labels.

3 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Lessons to be learned from visions of order, disorder and political decay

Joseph Yam Chi-kwong's paper on the future of Hong Kong's monetary system caused quite a stir. Irrespective of what happens to the dollar peg, the fundamental thrust of the former Monetary Authority chief's argument is irrefutable - that no fixed exchange rate system is consistent with sustainable budgetary deficits.

23 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

The golden jar

Long, long ago in Mongolia, there lived an emperor who was extremely vain and conceited. All he cared about was his appearance.

One morning, as he was checking himself in his bedroom mirrors, the emperor had a shock. There was a white hair sticking up on his head. He shouted for his chief adviser and wanted the white hair to be plucked out and thrown away secretly.

23 Apr 2012 - 12:00am

Sorry, but mainland is far from being a market economy

The economists within the liberal ranks understand that market economics forms the foundation of China's success. Yet their economic position has been hijacked by political ideologues who insist on linking market economics to the political system of liberal democracy.

5 Apr 2012 - 12:00am

NGOs say easing of registration rules is limited

Mainland NGOs are decrying Guangdong's lead as the first province to ease registration requirements as a limited move, despite kudos from Beijing and pro-government academics.

2 Apr 2012 - 12:00am

There's still hope for global freedom

While 2011 was seen as a year of movement towards global liberalism, in reality, no significant changes happened.

The Freedom in the World 2012 report shows more countries registered declines, not gains, in civil liberties last year.

29 Mar 2012 - 12:00am

Free economy looks less open from a cage home

Hong Kong remains the world's freest economy, according to the 2012 Index of Economic Freedom. However, it is worth considering exactly what this title means for the people.

15 Feb 2012 - 12:00am

On the fringes of North Korean politics

Kim Jong-un's haircut - what the ...? If we are going to scrutinise his father's funeral for clues about the way things are in North Korea, how about this little marvel of symbolic aestheticism?

30 Dec 2011 - 12:00am