The Party: The Secret World of China’s Communist Rulers

The Party: The Secret World of China’s Communist Rulers

Richard McGregor

Language: English

Pages: 336

ISBN: 0061708763

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


“Few outsiders have any realistic sense of the innards, motives, rivalries, and fears of the Chinese Communist leadership. But we all know much more than before, thanks to Richard McGregor’s illuminating and richly-textured look at the people in charge of China’s political machinery.... Invaluable.” — James Fallows, National Correspondent for The Atlantic

The Party is Financial Times reporter Richard McGregor’s eye-opening investigation into China’s Communist Party, and the integral role it has played in the country’s rise as a global superpower and rival to the United States. Many books have examined China’s economic rise, human rights record, turbulent history, and relations with the U.S.; none until now, however, have tackled the issue central to understanding all of these issues: how the ruling communist government works. The Party delves deeply into China’s secretive political machine.

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started talking about his life, I wasn’t sure if I had heard him correctly. Had he just denounced Mao for his ‘enormous crimes’ and killing countless people? The official from the propaganda department laughed nervously. Don’t take him too seriously, he said. As Nian warmed up, he began to sound less like a rebellious businessman and more like a party official. Slogan was laid upon slogan, punctuated by long pauses, and delivered in a booming voice. Each pronouncement finished with a screeching,

confiscated their assets. Over time, they criminalized private commercial activity, although the execution of the policy waxed and waned with political cycles and in different regions. The suspicion harboured towards entrepreneurs lingered long after Deng’s market reforms in the late seventies. As late as July 2001, Jiang Zemin’s decision to allow entrepreneurs to officially join the Party stirred a rare public split among the leadership and deep disquiet in the conservative rank and file. Deng,

partisan political appointee in Washington. The analogy is not exact. The Chinese Supreme Court is not like its US counterpart. It has hundreds of judges and performs administrative functions as well. But, broadly speaking, the comparison holds. In the Party’s view Wang’s political credentials made him perfectly qualified for the senior legal job. Wang performs another important role at the court, by hosting foreign judges and lawyers visiting China, as their nominal counterpart in the legal

reshuffled the industry leadership, still rankled with Tian and his chairman and party secretary, Zhang Chunjiang, who also sat through the embarrassing London roadshow. When the pair returned from overseas, they wrote to the Party and the government to register their concerns about the game of executive musical chairs. After the Netcom listing, Zhang went even further in an effort to prise open the Party’s control over the company. He recruited John Thornton, the former president of Goldman

aggrieved homeowners had continued their campaign against the city’s party committee and government. Groups of petitioners, including Shen Ting, regularly evaded the guards posted at Shanghai’s main railway station to take their complaints directly to the capital in 2003 and 2004, trooping ostentatiously from office to office in the capital in search of a hearing. First, they would go to the State Petition Bureau, then to the Central Politics and Law Commission and on to the Legislative Affairs

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