Der Economist betrachtet die neue Machtanballung in den Händen von Hu Jintao und ihre Folgen für die chinesische Politik: For all the speculation about Mr Hu's reformist tendencies, there is little to suggest that his strategy for reforming the party differs much from Mr Jiang's. It is likely that both men realise the need to adjust the party's dictatorial and secretive style to something more in tune with China's changed economic and social environment. And both accept that reform should proceed with caution, lest the forces it unleashes topple the party. Mr Hu made clear his bottom line in a speech on September 15th: “History has proved that in China copying the model of western political systems is a dead-end road.” In the past couple of years, the party (under Mr Hu, but building on ideas fostered by Mr Jiang) has promoted small-scale experiments in scattered areas of China in the strengthening of “intra-party democracy”, a goal that many Chinese scholars see as an essential prerequisite to making the system as a whole more accountable. The idea is to give ordinary party members genuine power to supervise decision-making and choose their representatives. The party's rules already grant its 70m-odd members these rights, but in practice they are ignored.


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