Archive for September 3rd, 2009

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Yu Jianrong: “Concrete Interests”

Yu Jianrong (于建嵘), Director of the Institute of Rural Development at Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, expects “more anger in the streets” for this year. In a Caijing article, he wrote in December 2008 (reprint July 2009) that

[t]he reason these incidents transform from economic disputes into riots and clashes with the government are political. At every level the Chinese government plays a long-term, all-around role and there is a lack of in a vigorous rule of law. In rule-of-law countries, laws and regulations are clear and predictable, the government acts as the judge, and when economic disputes arise the two sides can only resolve the issue by going through judicial processes. In China, a top-down authoritarian system, the people trust the leadership more than the judicial system. So when problems emerge, they ask the government to get involved in specific economic disputes. If the government cannot satisfy these appeals, trouble ensues.

As the incidents Yu refers to all have clear triggers and concrete underlying interests, and as the country is divided into various social groups without the unified ideology needed to bring these disparate incidents together, he sees no great likelihood for a unified social movement.

Yu concludes that the government should

set up judicial checks and balances and establish the authority of the legal system and its institutions in to create a true rule-of-law country. […..] it is crucial to establish county-level judicial checks and balances to allow the county courts and county prosecutors to break away from the political controls that safeguard their personnel, fiscal and business interests. These critical areas that should be under central government rather than county control. In order to deter the county courts and prosecutorial agencies from establishing illegal relationships with the county political regime, the central government could consider rotating judicial personnel on a regular basis

and adds that reforming these governing institutions is not about a change of dynasty or blindly copying the West.

Via China Digital Times.

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Related:
HK Chief Justice resigns, September 3, 2009
Propaganda will Set You Free, August 9, 2009

Thursday, September 3, 2009

HK Chief Justice Resigns

Chief Justice Andrew Li Kwok-nang (李国能) has announced that he will resign in September next year, three years before he was expected to retire, reports the HK Standard. His announcement in the HK Court of Final Appeal came unexpectedly and gave rise to suggestions that he leaves for political reasons. The Chief Justice denied speculation that political pressure or unhappiness with interpretations of the Basic Law by the National People’s Congress had played a role in the matter. In a press briefing, he said that no unhappy incident had triggered the decision.

He has been Hong Kong’s Chief Justice for thirteen years.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Tomorrow is a Lovely Day

That’s what Vera Lynn sings, and she must know.

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