|Preschoolers in Beijing.|
She said the fear in China was politics of the Left, now fighting a rear guard action as community expectations are reflected in the current administration’s promotion of greater individual ownership and rights. She said the new aspiration was to own a home and to afford that, workers are demanding a larger slice of the pie. What seems to have been forgotten by the very wealthy here and in the US but understood there, is that higher wages for workers are spent in the domestic economy, the largest market for home produced products.
It seems nonsensical to give greater wealth to the wealthy in a developed economy, hoping they will start new businesses to create jobs to produce what workers, who continue to have wages eroded, are less able to afford. She also filled in detail of how the one child policy works, and said access to social security for the retired and access to education and jobs for girls had ended the shameful killing of female babies driven by fear of a miserable, unsupported old age.
Couples can have more than one child, but the second child is not supported by the state so there is an economic disincentive. But, she says, couples are now happy to have small families, contrary to what we hear outside the country. With child care available to most as part workers employment packages, children receive plenty of social interaction. In rural areas where there is less opportunity for girls to earn wages, she says families have more children. It is a bit rich for us to still criticise China for what we perceive as lack of civil rights, considering how far it has come since its Communist revolution and large scale social intervention while we still fail our less fortunate.
Its political system in the modern era has delivered food to the table of all, while developing a mind boggling export machine. Our ‘woman inside’ said its focus is on economic development, not military expansionism. So to continue talking about ‘containing China’ will force them to investment in expanding their military forces and hardware, which she says is not their wish.
PS. If Climate Change and its threat to human habitation on this planet is to be halted this side of extinction, we need to invest heavily in renewable technology while we still can. For that to succeed, China must be be a full partner, so I do not wish to see them try to match the US, which spends (I read but have not verified) 40% of the global military budget. The scare campaign waged against Obama’s 10% reduction in military spending during the election seems to have failed, so watch for a ramped up rhetoric as the political/military machine feels the pain.