Summary of Contents


1. What Is the CCP Doing with the Right Hand While Putting Forth "Good Policies" with the Left Hand?
2. From Whom Did People Learn the Tactic, "While There Are Policies from Above, There Are Ways to Go Through the Motions at Lower Levels?"
3. The Erroneous Perception of "Leaders Who Are Close to the People"
4. What Is the Actual Effect of the "Policy of People's Livelihood"?
4.1 Abolish the Agriculture Tax
4.2 Reduce or Exempt from School Fees
4.3 New Medical Reform Policies and National Medical Care
4.4 National Social Security
4.5 The Deception of the "Policy of People's Livelihood"
5. How Should We View the Delayed "Policy of People's Livelihood?"
6. Does the CCP Truly Care About the "Livelihood of the People?"
7. How the "Bad Policies" Are Protected
8. Be Brave to Protect Your Rights
9. Where Is the Way Out?


"While there are policies from above, there are ways to go through the motions at lower levels." "The policies from the Central Government are good, and it is those at the lower levels that have messed things up." This is the view shared by many Chinese people. Unwittingly, they have approved the view that "people at the top level are good, and it is their subordinates that have messed things up." Isn't it true, though, that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials have all worked their way up from being subordinates, level by level?

In recent years, the Communist regime has put forth a policy of "people's livelihood" and certain leaders have given the appearance of being "close to the people." Consequently, the people have received some benefits and comfort, and they have developed a feeling of gratitude towards the leaders. These are natural feelings. However, many people have also developed some support of and hope towards the Party on the basis of the "policy of people's livelihood" and the illusions they have about some individuals' character, and once again they have placed the fate of their lives and that of their children and grandchildren in the hands of the CCP. They imagine that a good life is just around the corner, and they have given up their pursuit for basic rights. They even resent the exposure of the CCP's crimes. What will become of us for holding such a attitude? We will not get short-term benefits and will have no guarantee at all for our long-term interests.

1. What Is the CCP Doing with the Right Hand While Putting Forth "Good Policies" with the Left Hand?

Take the example of a recent case, the BBC's Chinese website published a report on October 10, 2008 titled "Transfer of land management: The government is keen; the peasants are not convinced." Shi Chaoxun, an orchard owner from Liaocheng, Shandong Province said to the BBC reporter in an interview, "The policies from the central government are very good," but then he frankly said, "The peasants won't benefit from this round of land reform," because "the laws are not enforced and the power is bigger than the law." In other words, people at lower levels could misinterpret the law. When asked how to prevent misinterpretation of the law, Shi said, "The only way is to have peasants unite, but it is very difficult to do so." The interview stopped there.

Shi Chaoxu has touched on a fundamental issue, which is that only by organizing independent farmers' associations, can they supervise the implementation of the "good policies." Then who is it that forbids the farmers to unite? Clearly, the Party leaders at the township and county levels do not have the right to decide on such matters. Only the Communist Central Government has the power to make such decisions. In other words, those who interfere with the implementation of the "good policies" are the very same group of people who put forth the "good policies." No wonder there is a saying in China, "Troubles in China come from those who sit in the first three rows at the front."

This is rather ironic. The Party constantly puts forth "good policies" to alleviate the crises in people's lives. Such good policies include abolishing the agriculture tax, reducing school fees, increasing retirement pensions, and introducing low-cost insurance, social security, and medical insurance. Meanwhile the regime racks their brains to try to cook up "bad policies" to prevent or avoid implementation of such "good policies." They forbid freedom of speech and independent media, so that there is no public scrutiny. They forbid the independence of jurisdiction, so that social justice cannot be upheld. They forbid farmers, who yearn to benefit from the "good policies," to become united so that the farmers cannot safeguard their rights from being violated. They forbid freedom of belief so that morals and trust in society cannot be restored.

The regime publishes "good policies" with the left hand, while concocting "bad policies" (ways to avoid or negate the good policies) with the right hand. As a result, not only is it that the "good policies" cannot be reasonably implemented, but many new problems will also arise from these "bad policies."

2. From Whom Did People Learn the Tactic, "While There Are Policies from Above, There Are Ways to Go Through the Motions at Lower Levels?"

In fact, whether it is "those at the top" or "those at lower levels," they are all trained by the Party, and the means "those who are at lower levels" use to go through the motions are all learned from "those at the top."

Take for example environmental protection. The regime made a policy that each province must "implement the one-vote veto system." By the sound of it, it seems that the regime is truly determined to resolve these problems and that there is hope for environmental protection. However, what is the situation like when it comes to implementing the policy? It is actually very simple: leaders at various levels (from provinces, cities, counties to townships) have formed a common-interest union. In order to keep their respective positions, they encourage covering up things like pollution. When incidents do happen, they do their best to cover them up and forbid the media from reporting them, or they even attack and retaliate against any reporters who dare to expose the facts.

Did the local officials initiate suppressing media reporters? Of course not; the control and suppression of the media is the Communist regime's fundamental national policy. A report published in 2005 by the Journalists Protection Committee (headquartered in New York) says that the country of China has the largest number of incarcerated reporters, not to mention the huge sum of funds spent on their blocking Internet websites and on forcing foreign investors to control and filter information in cooperation with the regime. The local officials are only copying the ways of the central government in their treatment of media coverage.

Let us now take a look at the issue of petitioning. The relationship between the officials and the people has become very tense in recent years, and there have been frequent incidents on a large scale in protest of the brutal treatment towards the people by the local governments. An incident occurred in Weng'an City (in Guizhou Province) in which a young girl was raped and murdered by local officials. This is a typical example. The people were so angry that they burned down the local government building. Later, the central government required that the local governments not send the armed police to the front line to confront the people whenever there is an issue, as this would cause tension between the government and the people. The local governments are also required to have dialogues with the people to avoid intensifying any conflicts.

There is another measure called "zero petition" (meaning nobody would go to the central government to appeal or petition). It sounds as if the regime is determined to make sure that the local governments deal with people's complaints properly. However, the fact is that whenever there is a problem, the local governments still send out the armed police, as most incidents involve the local government officials, and there is no way that the officials would compromise and communicate with the people. So, instead of letting things escalate, the officials opt for armed suppression to protect their positions. Then, what if there are people who go to appeal to the central government? For them, this is also very easy to deal with. They simply detain all those who may go to appeal, or they send retrievers everywhere to stop petitioners from going to Beijing. They even have retrievers stationed at the gate of the central appeals office to block people. In this way, they meet the requirement for "zero petition."

Did the local governments initiate the use of armed force to suppress people and detain petitioners? No, this was not their initiative. Didn't the central government use armed police and the army to suppress the students' movement in the June 4th Tiananmen Square Massacre in 1989? Didn't they also use armed police and the army to suppress the Tibetan people in 2008? Falun Gong practitioners have been persecuted for so many years. Has the regime ever sat down to have a dialogue with Falun Gong practitioners? Have they ever allowed the practitioners to appeal?

Therefore, it has never been the case that "while there are policies from above, there are always ways to go through the motions at the lower levels." Instead, the reality is that they have "no policy" to deal with complaints from the people. The people want freedom of speech and freedom of belief; then wouldn't this mean that they want to end the Communist autocracy? So when people demand such freedoms, it is not surprising that the CCP would use the barrel of a gun to suppress the people and use propaganda to fabricate lies and to slander others. They have no other way to maintain their autocracy.

3. The Erroneous Perception of "Leaders Who Are Close to the People"

If individual leaders care somewhat more about the hardships of the people, then it is a fortunate thing for the people, and merits should go to those individual leaders. What we need to be clear about is that in the Party system there is very little leeway for an individual to do good things. However, some people justify the legitimacy of the CCP's rule by referring to the charms of a particular leader, and they use this to argue for the autocracy of the regime. Some people even believe that the Party again has some hope for success. Such perception is erroneous and very dangerous, and it will cause great harm to the national development of China in the long run.

When Zhu Rongji was Premier, he made a bold pledge, "Of 100 coffins, I give 99 to the corrupt officials and leave the last one for me." People at the time thought they were really lucky to have such a good Premier. Then what happened in the end? The corruption went from bad to worse. As an individual, Wen Jiabao cares about the people, and his tears have moved countless people. He once personally retrieved payment in arrears owed to Chongqing City peasant Xiong Demin's husband, and afterwards, he spoke out in a loud voice: "Stop the delay in payments to migrant workers from its source." In some places, the local governments even set up an office known as "office for recovery of delayed payments," to assist migrant workers to retrieve their payments. However, for years now, has the problem of delaying payments been solved? What people actually see is that the problem has become more and more serious, and many violent conflicts have occurred as a result of it. Premier Wen is in an isolated position with his fruitless determination. The reason for it is very simple. As the Premier, Wen can shed sympathetic tears for the migrant workers, but he cannot give people the right to organize independent "peasants associations" to protect their human rights. Freedom of assembly is a civil right stipulated in China's Constitution. However, as the Premier, Wen Jiabao cannot even stand up to protect such a basic right bestowed upon people by the Constitution. What can he do, then?

Zhu Rongji and Wen Jiabao could not do anything to change the situation, so they only comforted their consciences by hoping that people would make a fair judgment on them after they have retired or died. In 2000, Zhu Rongji said that he hoped that he could feel content if after his death people say, "He was an honest and upright official, not a corrupt one." In 2008, Wen Jiabao said during an interview in New York that he hoped that after he passed away people would still remember him as a Premier who did not retreat from disaster and that he did not enjoy special privileges.

The fact that these premiers could not do much for the people shows very clearly that the Communist system hinders the development of China. From their powerlessness, we can see that only by constantly putting pressure on the Communist system can there be any real reform and improvement. If people feel content with the Communist system simply because these two individual premiers have cared about the welfare of the people, and if people count on the Party itself for self-reform, it would be a disaster for the Chinese nation and even for these premiers; the people would have also let them down.

Usually, the more caring the leaders, the more willing they are to listen to what the people want them to do. So the masses of people should appeal to them more about how the Communist regime has suppressed basic human rights. And the masses of people should expose the hoodlum and evil nature of the regime to help the leaders see the will of the people, the support and courage of the people. Wouldn't this help them more to carry their historical responsibilities?

To take a step back, if these leaders (who appear to care about the people) only want to adopt a pose to whitewash the regime to delay the disintegration of the Communist Party and only care about whether people of future generations would perceive them as honest and upright officials, and if they forget about their historical responsibilities and choose to avoid responsibility, choose to cooperate with the regime, and even be used by the Party to benumb people when they are needed to help fundamentally shake the Communist regime's autocracy and guarantee social justice for the people, then from a long term point of view, these leaders may be condemned by history.

When news broke that 23-year-old Du Xuelei from Hebei Province was beaten to death in a police station by three police officers from Henan Province, there was a heated response from Internet users. Facing the frequent malicious incidents of police abusing their power, someone called out, "Where are you, our most respected Premier Wen?" This call represents the expectations of the people, and furthermore it also contains the condemnation of the premier for his failing to take his historic responsibility.

The Chinese people no longer believe in tears, and what they want is the courage to bring the Communist regime's autocratic rule to an end.

(To be continued)

October 20, 2008