I think I had a fundamental misjudgement on things. Originally, I thought that the people in power now are the group of zeilist in the 1960s. This is a generation without much education and exposure to international norms. For them the formative experience is the culture revolution where the cutting part of human nature is accecurated. When the younger generation moves into leadership postions, issues would be resolved and the country would embrace international norms like any other countries in the world. But education and exposure will only be superfacial if the things that motivotes people are ego. The governmental structure we see might be a refection of the characters of something much more fundamental than just education and exposure. This scares me, a lot.
The moderate, who has a good understanding on what is going on and probably have the best idea for how to move forward, will keep their mouth shut. That is the best option facing them. Those who seek power and eventually gets it are most likely to be those that least qualified to do so.
Lying with statistics:
Loyalty is now at the center of the machinery. Obsequiousness of the local officials is probably the most benign manifestation of the shifting wind. At its worst form, loyalty would reveal itself as willingness for the most extreme actions based on the faintest hints of the higherups.
Case in point, the sudden reopen:
My new article.— Zhuoran Li (@LiZhuoran0322) January 7, 2023
Based on a series of interviews with my contacts in China, I tried to map out what happened behind China's sudden end of the Zero-Covid policy. https://t.co/ceZdQUTvMu
Prior to the sudden reopen, it was the investment into facilities for permanent zero-covid.
This is a government that knows how to rule but not how to govern. https://t.co/7n40O8gxOn— Yasheng Huang 黄亚生 (@YashengHuang) December 28, 2022
I think the quality of policymaking/governance in China has deteriorated during XJP, getting worse over time. Overcommitment to Zero Covid, which was never sustainable, failure to develop viable exit strategy 1/3 https://t.co/6k4GHDkjcD— Mary Gallagher (@MaryGao) December 24, 2022
dictators’ reported GDP tended to grow much faster than satellite images of their countries would suggest. This could not be explained by their economies being based on different industries from other countries, or that people had lower average incomes.https://t.co/v0FuKlY5wt pic.twitter.com/cqX6fWq9uF— Bai Liping (白莉萍) (@bai_liping) November 1, 2022
Right after 1997 Asian Financial Crisis the view was that foreign investors (Soros!) led the capital flight. Later research by @baselinescene shows that it was actually domestic investors who pulled out first and foreign investors acted on cue. https://t.co/t9OSIC38SV— Yasheng Huang 黄亚生 (@YashengHuang) October 25, 2022
The U.S. has been offering for months to provide Western vaccines to China. Xi pivoted 180 degrees from extreme zero Covid to laissez faire but can he turn around on vaccine nationalism and accept international help? It could restore confidence in China's pragmatism.— Susan Shirk (@SusanShirk1) December 23, 2022
With such a power distribution, one likely outcome is the closing of financial market.