Attacks highlight contradictions of Beijing’s ‘stability’ model |

The root of all these incidents are linked to the increasing despair of locals at their failure to obtain justice in Chinese society, whether it is related to corruption, forced government acquisition of land, public health and safety hazards, unfairness in legal proceedings or dealing with party or government officials — especially the despised heavy-handed urban management officers known as “chengguan.”

In dealing with societal problems, local governments have often acted contradictorily, opting for “stability” in favor of the needs of the public, crossing legal boundaries and using the police to stamp out civil unrest, further inflaming hostilities against the authorities.

The third plenum scheduled for Nov. 9-12 will reportedly involve discussions on extensive social and economic reform. Chinese authorities have already earned praise for their increased transparency in handling sensitive incidents such as the recent attacks, but it remains to be seen whether efforts will be made to amend the “stability maintenance” model that ironically appears to be ultimate source of the instability.

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Attacks highlight contradictions of Beijing’s ‘stability’ model |

I have often pointed out in the past that stability is not your friend. It is controlled instability that you want. That’s because societies are inherently unstable. Making them stable is like pushing down on the lid of a boiling pot of water. It works for awhile, then it blows up. A controlled release of steam (controlled instability) is the solution. In China’s case that would be elections.

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