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A discussion about what President Hu Jintao's speech signals to the world about changes in China's future.
At the end of the day, changes happen due to the evolving environment and human nature of adaptability. There is no question that for China to continue to more forward, some elements of political reform are necessary and inevitable. Democracy is basically the norm in modern government, just like monarchy was the norm in the pre-modern era. However, as there were variations in monarchy, there could also be various forms of democracy. We all know that there are strengths and weaknesses in the so called liberal democracies. Therefore, China should not blindly adopt democracy seen in other countries per se, but try to come up with a system that takes strengths (transparency, popular support, etc) and avoid the weaknesses (gridlock, partisan politics, etc). This should be beyond the ideological argument of liberalism, conversatism, confucianism, etc. It should strives to develop a system that balances out the need for enough legitimacy as well as check and balance and yet retains merit and competency based on a society’s unique underlying character. It has a golden opportunity to think out of the box, learn from the experience from other countries and try to improve it. No government or system is perfect, it all comes down to striking a balance that is acceptable for the majority of its citizens.
China no doubt needs reforms that will engender transparency,playing by the rules and all inclusive political space without which the its demise is inevitable and iminent
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