Some people refuse to invest in “sin stocks” such as those of tobacco, alcohol and weapons companies and casinos. For a similar moral reason, I have never bought private tutorial school stocks in mainland China, even though there was a craze for them, until now. I was beating myself up for a long time for missing out. Boy, for my “morality”, I was saved from losing a bundle. The crackdown on the private education industry in China has been a long time coming. Wall Street pundits and investors are finger-wagging with outrage: it’s a “political crackdown”; you can’t trust those Chinese commies … Here’s a typical criticism from the journalistic citadel of American capitalism, The Wall Street Journal : “Beijing unveiled draconian new restrictions on the private-tutoring market,” its editorial screams. “The biggest loser will be the Chinese public who are finding that the promise of their country’s economic opening is under threat.” Understandably, for the journal’s editorialists, the interests of capitalists and investors are paramount, everyone else’s are secondary, or don’t count at all. It may be difficult for such people to understand that other societies may have different social and moral priorities. For example, education should be for education, not for profit, or at least not for making billionaires and creating monopolies at the expense of social well-being and equality. What’s wrong with turning the country’s educational-industrial complex into non-profit groups, and banning them from making new listings, raising capital or taking investment from foreign investors? Nothing, as far as most Chinese are concerned. It’s surely a good thing. Granted, American capitalists will think, “That’s just evil socialism!” Zhang Yiming’s education dream dashed by Beijing Private education chains have formed a booming industry by encouraging an academic “arms race” among students and their paying parents. The biggest ones are listed in New York and Hong Kong. Middle-class and well-off parents pay high tuition to make sure their children score good grades in school and get ahead in life. That has created widening inequalities between different economic classes, and between families in cities and the more disadvantaged in rural areas. Young couples have fewer or no children at all because of the high costs of raising them, especially for their education. When my children were younger, I resented having to send them to after-school tutorials in Hong Kong but had to for them to keep up academically with their classmates. Hong Kong parents and children should be freed from such pressure as well.