“Countries in region fearful of China’s rise” | SCMP 6 November


Xi's China has the region and markets spooked.
A Letter to the Editor headline caught my attention in this morning's South China Morning Post. The letter seemed familiar; then realised it was mine....

Niall Ferguson is right to cast doubts on the West's fawning encomiums of President Xi Jinping ("Western praise for Xi Jinping seemingly knows no bounds", October 31).
More telling are the views of China's Asia-Pacific neighbours towards Xi and to China's rise.
A recent Pew poll reveals that only 34 percent expect Xi to "do the right thing" regarding world affairs.
Nine in 10 believe China's increased military spending is a "bad thing" and 47 percent believe that its rise is a "major threat" to their country.
Despite Xi's authoritarian tendencies, the rise of social media means he has to take more notice of the Chinese people. So he vows to "develop consultative democracy".
Let us hope that he will also take notice of the people in our region and aim to develop "consultative democracy" with them as well.
Peter Forsythe, Discovery Bay
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LATER: Related: "Why Xi's Chinese dream is a far cry from the American one".  South China Morning Post, 2 November.  This article reminded me of a comment I made years ago:
America has One Big Idea; China has none.  
The American Big Idea is "Freedom".  What's China's?  Communism? certainly not; not anymore.  Socialism? Not when it's "socialism with Chinese characteristics".  Freedom? no way. Equality? neither for gender equality (99 out of 145), nor income (120 out of 150).
That's what Michael Chugani explores in this article.  Interesting, for Chugani is normally a bit of a US-hating leftie.

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