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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/6826/china-abandoned-communism-and-deadly-chaos-is-the-result/

China Abandoned Communism and deadly chaos is the result!

July 9, 2007 by

Ever think that the anti-capitalism of the press is exaggerated or non-existent? Check out this incredible story at MSNBC/Newsweek. You would never know, never even guess, that China was the home to a murderous tyrant only a few decades ago (est. 40 million dead), and you would certainly never guess that China has gone from vast impoverishment to vast economic growth in record time, and certainly the relationship of this to capitalism is completely lost on the reporter. So here we go with the full-scale hysteria blaming the market for all of China’s woes:

Far from the disciplined and tightly controlled economy China was thought to have, the ongoing scandals have revealed an often chaotic system with lax standards, where the government’s economic authority has been weakened by rapid reforms. This sorry state is not unprecedented… China today resembles nothing so much as the United States a century ago, when robber barons, gangsterism and raw capitalism held sway. Now as then, powerful vested interests are profiting from murky regulations, shoddy enforcement, rampant corruption and a lack of consumer awareness.


Jonathan Bostwick July 9, 2007 at 5:45 pm

How sad that Americans still believe in Communism long after the Chinese.

N. Joseph Potts July 9, 2007 at 6:16 pm

The title of Newsweek’s article (“Unsafe at Any Speed”) certainly resonates with me.

I drive a 1966 Chevrolet Corvair. Very happily and safely, too – at least up to now.

Christopher Hettinger July 9, 2007 at 7:54 pm

Haha, I was wondering when one of you bloggers picked up on this. I posted about it in the Austrian Forum on this site not too long ago.

Spread the word!

matth July 9, 2007 at 8:31 pm

“Three decades ago, all of China’s big manufacturers were state-owned enterprises, and the government could guarantee quality control.”

Three decades ago most citizens in China did not have enough to eat. Anyone in China three decades old will have relatives who were incarcerated for something.

The government did nothing but guarantee misery and poverty for the vast majority of the one billion Chinese unfortunate enough to live there then. It’s still not easy there, but it is so much better.

TLWP Sam July 9, 2007 at 9:56 pm

Wow who’s not reading the whole article now then? Just cherry-pick the parts of where Capitalism is bad and Government is good and show there’s a conspiracy going on to reintroduce Communism.

Did anyone read the article where it talked about business operators engaging in dangerous and fraudulent behaviour? That their behaviour could cripple the Chinese economy because other nations are starting to presume ‘made in China’ doesn’t mean low quality but just pathetic and, perhaps, dangerous? Or that some importing nations are considering looking elsewhere rather than China?

Mathieu Bédard July 9, 2007 at 10:05 pm

Indeed, we’re pretty far along on the road to serfdom…

Christopher Hettinger July 9, 2007 at 10:35 pm

TLWP, yes we read the whole article (at least I did). However, it is the state facilitates this behaviour by subsidizing, protecting, and dealing with crooks.

The situation is China is what you would call a market distortion. The mob government makes certain to censor any attempts from persons to protest anything contrary to it’s premises, including their unofficial ones.

I need not say more as countless others have written on this subject elsewhere on this and many other sites.

We aren’t blind corporate lap dogs if that is what you mean; we simply understand that the state is the criminal here.

Andras Ludanyi July 10, 2007 at 5:15 am

Another idiotic story just to remind the world, that Chinese may have the “Communist” in the name and the “Western World” do not, but the fact is, that there are much more communist/”corporatism” fascist here than China ever could dream (and China has 1.3+ billion people) :)

There is only one hope to reverse this totalitarian deadly course for civilization… Ron Paul 2008.

Anthony July 10, 2007 at 7:04 am

“That their behaviour could cripple the Chinese economy because other nations are starting to presume ‘made in China’ doesn’t mean low quality but just pathetic and, perhaps, dangerous? ”

Good illustration of how markets penalize poor quality.

Yumi July 10, 2007 at 7:37 am

I agree with Anthony, that only consumer responses will improve products. What bugs me about the article is the constant reference to ‘Beijing’ as if politicians in Beijing have the power to fix all these. They just executed the head of Food and Safety Administration but of course, this won’t automatically resolve the issue.


No ‘standard’ is as effective as consumer reactions.

Reformed Republican July 10, 2007 at 7:45 am

Executions for corrupt politicians. I could almost get behind a policy like that.

Matt July 10, 2007 at 7:56 am

This is partially the fault of every economist and businessman who claims that China is a capitalist country. The people in China lack many of the most basic property rights, local government officials expropriate land and wealth to benefit themselves, and victims of fraud often have no recourse. I myself have purchased fake products placed inside counterfeit packaging in China. I brought the “product” back and only after giving the owner an earful for several minutes did I get my money back. However, the fake product went back on the shelf.

Up until the opening in the late 1970′s, and probably for sometime after, the people were subject to mass propaganda on the evils of capitalism. I’ve heard some of that is still in school textbooks today. If people are taught for 30 or 40 years that capitalists are cheaters, what do you think will happen when the government says capitalism is ok?

jeffrey July 10, 2007 at 8:58 am

The problem with execution for corrupt politicians is that corrupt politicians are often the saving grace for the economy and the social order. Which is better: a politician who imposes alcohol prohibition as a matter of firm principle or one that accepts a bribe to vote against prohibition? The same is true of corrupt bureaucrats. It’s better than the fire-code enforcer accept a bribe in engage for leaving business alone rather than enforce a law that would cripple free enterprise.

Yumi July 10, 2007 at 9:53 am

In this particular case, government officials appointed this guy, he took bribes, he is executed and nothing substantial has happened to the food safety issue as a result. According to that BBC link “the government hopes the execution shows it is getting to grips with the crisis” but such effort is futile. Ultimately, if consumers reject shoddy goods, in order to survive, producers have to improve or stay out of business. No wonder “the food and drug safety situation is not something we (officials) can be optimistic about”

TLWP Sam July 10, 2007 at 10:02 am

What is the Libertarian view on ‘caveat emptor’?

Yumi July 10, 2007 at 10:11 am

TLWP, I was thinking about that, precisely. I can’t speak for all libertarians but consumers have to decide for themselves and be alert. The consumer protection law only results in absurd lawsuits (e.g. a woman was holding a cup of coffee while driving and burnt herself, sued the coffee vendor).

Quenton July 10, 2007 at 12:02 pm

Did anyone notice that the article treats the execution of a scapegoat lackey as no big deal, but then turns around and spends 90% of the print space complaining about there not being enough government oversight IN A COMMUNIST COUNTRY?

I think it’s pretty clear where their priorities lay…..

As far as the Libertarian view of ‘caveat emptor’, I always thought that the Libertarian view WAS ‘caveat emptor’.

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