What does the 'Chinese dream' really mean?

What does the 'Chinese dream' really mean?

Since the United States' founding in 1776, Americans have considered it an exceptional nation. Chinese, too, view themselves as exceptional with their connection to the celestial empire. Chinese "exceptionalism", however, diverges from the American concept. The political ideology of the US resonates with the Enlightenment values of democracy, freedom and individual rights. Meanwhile, China strives to preserve and perfect its exceptional nature based on the Confucian model of virtues.

Thursday, 14 March, 2013, 2:59am 4 comments

Chavez's passing is opportunity to restore democratic institutions

Supporters of the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez cry in front of the Military Hospital. Photo: AFP

Venezuela's late president Hugo Chavez was an extraordinary leader. His charisma and forceful manner ensured a string of decisive election victories that kept him in power from 1999 until his death from cancer on Tuesday at the age of 58. The creator of a socialist movement centred on reducing poverty and inequality, he had a legion of adoring fans across Latin America. But his controversial policies and divisive rule have left the nation in a sorry state, its politics deeply divided, its economy in a shambles and its judiciary and media broken.

7 Mar 2013 - 2:35am 1 comment

Xi Jinping endorses Deng Xiaoping's party mantra

Communist Party general secretary Xi Jinping called on newly elected senior party members to adhere to 'socialism with Chinese characteristics'. Photo: Xinhua

Communist Party general secretary Xi Jinping yesterday called on newly elected senior party members to adhere to "socialism with Chinese characteristics". Since Xi took over as leader there have been growing calls for wide-ranging reforms.

6 Jan 2013 - 5:08am

Rattled cages

Bears wait to be fed at the Moon Bear Rescue Centre, northern Vietnam.

A sanctuary in Vietnam is fighting tooth and claw an eviction order that would put its more than 100 bears back behind bars. Simon Parry investigates.

29 Oct 2012 - 2:11pm 5 comments

China's urbanisation challenge

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao during a speech at Tsinghua University in Beijing where he conceded that China's urbanisation is falling short of what it should be. Photo: Xinhua

This year marks a watershed in Chinese urbanisation: for the first time in China's history, over half of its people now live in the city. With an average of over one percentage point added to the rate of urbanisation every year for the past 33 years, it's an achievement to be proud of.

20 Sep 2012 - 2:28am

Employers' Federation resists rise in HK$28 minimum wage

A federation representing about 500 employers is calling for the minimum wage to stay at HK$28 an hour, saying that otherwise companies will have to cut staff to stay in business.

11 Sep 2012 - 3:26am

Editor at Communist Party mouthpiece blasts leaders

From left: Wen Jiabao, Vice-President Xi Jinping and Hu Jintao. Xi is widely expected to succeed Hu as president. Photo: AP

A senior editor of Study Times, a Communist Party mouthpiece, has launched a blistering broadside at the country's outgoing leaders, who are about to step down in a once-a-decade shake-up, accusing them of stalling long-overdue political reform and brewing a legitimacy crisis.

4 Sep 2012 - 10:25am

Vietnam must tame self-serving elites

The arrest of Nguyen Duc Kien, one of Vietnam's wealthiest and most prominent businessmen, on suspicion of "economic violations", has severely rattled the country's economy. Yet this episode is only the most recent evidence of an emerging struggle over the country's economy. Vietnam, which has been widely assumed to have a bright developmental outlook, is now in the doldrums.

29 Aug 2012 - 2:22am

Kim Jong-un's uncle in Beijing to build on economic co-operation

Jang Song-thaek, uncle of Kim Jong-un, arrives in Beijing. Photo: Reuters

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's uncle - the man seen as the power behind the young and untested dictator - is in Beijing, in the latest signal the reclusive state is looking seriously at ways to revive its broken economy.

15 Aug 2012 - 4:24am


Kim should admit relief agencies

North Korea is again asking for humanitarian aid as the country reels from the effects of devastating floods. Several relief agencies and the UN are preparing to provide food and water.

How should the world respond? What can North Korea do this time to break the pattern of distrust?

7 May 2015 - 3:07pm

Billions more for struggling elderly

Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying yesterday delivered a multibillion-dollar package of relief measures to improve the lives of the elderly poor and boost the development of social enterprises.

17 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Leung 'hasn't thought about labour laws'

Leung Chun-ying has no plans to speed up a review of the minimum wage and 'has not thought about' workers' calls to raise the pay level in the light of inflation, a unionist lawmaker cited the chief executive-elect as saying.

2 May 2012 - 12:00am

Power play throws Korean rift into relief

Parallel political scenes in North and South Korea this week etch the differences between the systems that hold sway above and below the demilitarised zone that has divided the Korean Peninsula since 1953.

13 Apr 2012 - 12:00am

Push to privatise SOEs 'a foreign plot'

The head of China's state-owned military and civilian aviation company said the privatisation of state-owned enterprises was part of a foreign conspiracy to shake the foundations of the Communist Party.

He warned the PLA would be the next target once SOEs were privatised.

11 Apr 2012 - 12:00am

Is there a price to pay for democracy?

'Why are some societies democratic, prosperous and stable and others autocratic, poor and unstable? These are perhaps the most important questions in social science.'

29 Mar 2012 - 12:00am