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The unique political OS that powers China

(People's Daily Online)    08:22, July 01, 2020

China’s rise is a story like none other, so it would make sense that we try to understand the success of China from the perspective of its political system.

If we compare countries around the world, we shall find that they differ in terms of things like natural resources and population sizes. This is the “hardware” of a country, and regardless of the configuration, we need an operating system to make things run.

An operating system is a vital component of a computer system. Without it, the parts that make up a computer do not know how to communicate with one another and the system cannot do the things we expect it to do.

If we liken a country to a computer, then a political party is the software that powers it. Like the operating systems that run our devices, countries need a way to manage resources and provide services. In other words, they need an operating system.

As we all know, each operating system has its own advantages and disadvantages, and different operating systems produce different results.

A feature of the Western operating system is divisions. Everything is broken down into separate parts and they do not function well as a whole. This creates a never-ending struggle between different groups and institutions.

In America, the two main political parties constantly battle it out for the interests of their group. This system of division and conflict has its advantages, but putting the fundamental interests of the whole people first is not one of them.

What sets China apart is that the Communist Party of China represents the fundamental interests of the whole people, as well as strong emphasis on stability over instability and cooperation over division.

China is a complex country with a long history. The political party system that has formed in China over the years aims to promote unity by bringing together the different interests under one roof.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has said that the goal of the Party is to satisfy the Chinese people’s yearning for a better life. Its mission is to seek happiness for the Chinese people and to rejuvenate the Chinese nation.

This has made it possible for China to set and carry out ambitious goals over a long period. For example, the Two Centenaries (two 100-year goals), which aim to build a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2021 and a modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious and beautiful by 2049, and the goal to eliminate poverty in a country with some 1.4 billion people by 2020.

In the West, it is unlikely that such ambitious goals could be set, let alone carried out.

Not only is the Western operating system unstable but it is also prone to crashes. Political parties rise or fall with each election cycle, but the cycle just continues all over again and nothing really moves forward.

China is determined to develop its operating system. In November 2019, the Communist Party of China held a key meeting to map out a clearer top-level design for upholding and improving the system of socialism with Chinese characteristics and modernizing China’s system and capacity for governance.

This shows that China is constantly upgrading and optimizing its system and institutions in response to changes. While in the West, what we see is frequent dysfunction and regular resets of their operating systems, rather than upgrading. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)
(Web editor: Liu Ning, Bianji)

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