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U.S. Election: China's People See Less to Adore (People's Daily, People's Republic of China)


Has the U.S. political system lost its appeal to the mass of Chinese? Sounding more like a wish than a statement of fact, columnist Shan Renping of China's state-run People's Daily asserts that in today's China, people want the country to follow its 'own path', and tellingly, he writes, 'China's people have not completely left their low sense of self-esteem behind, but we are certainly more confident.'


By Shan Renping


September 11, 2012  


People's Republic of China - People's Daily - Original Article (English)

A supporter of President Obama yells at a Romney backer outside the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte last week: Do people in China find the U.S. political system less appealing than they used to?


CCTV NEWS VIDEO, CHINA [STATE-RUN]: American political parties in 'ambush-style' registration drive of new U.S. citizens, Sept. 2, 00:02:048RealVideo

On September 6, with President Barack Obama's acceptance of the Democratic presidential nomination, the U.S. presidential election officially began. As one of the most energetic campaigns in the world, it draws a lot of attention. It is an event that the American people regard as a global class on "democracy." And certainly, it is the most prominent election in the Western world.


Objectively, without the overall success of its political system, the U.S. would not have enjoyed the prosperity that it has. But it is a system that has been shaped by that nation's own history, which evolved out of a long process of trial and error.


The American presidential election has a strong influence in China. Generally speaking, many Chinese are quite envious of U.S. presidential elections - as well as the American political system.


One should not conflate America's system with its historic prosperousness and lifestyle. There are defects attached to America's system. But most Chinese don't regard it as a "bad" system.


At the same time, however, blind worship of America's system among Chinese, as in the early days of reform and opening-up, is long past. Mainstream society in China recognizes that because of differing national conditions, China cannot just mechanically apply the U.S. experience.

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This conclusion has been drawn after close observation of the complex practices of democracy in other nations over the past two decades. In addition, China's boom over recent years has allowed people in China to feel justified about the nation going its own way. According to the Global Polling Center owned by the Global Times, the number of Chinese who support going our own way are significant.


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Even among online opinion leaders, few expected China to implement a Western-style political system. They may assert what they think China should do, but this is more sloganeering and a show of attitudes than a realistic suggestion.


In China, there is a consensus that there are many things worth learning from and emulating in the United States. There is little opposition to this idea. The world has many good things, but not all of them can be employed in a way that is fitting with our ways. In the political sphere, Chinese are gradually realizing this truth as well.


In recognizing America's political success as well as its problems, Chinese confidence should be strengthened. For if we truly wanted to follow our own path, a much higher level of confidence is required. China's people have not completely left their low sense of self-esteem behind, but we are certainly more confident.


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[Posted by Worldmeets.US Sept. 11, 9:59pm]


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