“Anything that questions the Party’s right to power becomes a threat to ‘harmony’ and thus peace and happiness in China are explicitly linked to a lack of political freedom. In the minds of many Chinese people, not expressing any interest in the political future of China becomes a sign of patriotism and good citizenship.
The harmony-peace-stability equation is far too simplistic to guarantee more than a temporary peace. Even though the Communist Party has done a highly effective job in creating a country in which individuals are afraid to speak out, it faces a number of problems so huge, and yet so unique, that armies of citizens will be formed, each developed from a specific social condition.
In this book, we discuss Five Armies of Instability, each army of which is capable in itself of creating disturbances and imbalance negative enough to destabilize even the most totalitarian government’s ‘harmonious’ controls. These five armies are not staffed with military experts or legionnaires, but are made up of citizens who have a particular disabling burden the government has thrust upon them intentionally or through neglect.
Already, the forces of these armies are reluctantly growing in number and in most cases are blindly unobserved by the government. These are not dissidents, not revolutionaries per se. These are the human result of tampering with nature or the inattention of those in power to reach out with a helping hand.”
The greatest trick China’s Communist Party ever pulled was teaching the people not to think.
This is why while China is the greatest political conundrum in the world, its population is almost wholly politically apathetic. The entire political discourse in China boils down to a single sentence: ‘Things are better than they used to be.’
And for the future? ‘Things can only get better.’ That’s what most people I talk to in China tell me.
The two phrases pair like a one-two punch of political apathy.
Sure, in an absolute sense, there is some truth to those statements. After spending multiple decades killing around 70 million of its own citizens, China’s Communist Party has indeed become more benign.
But this cannot be called an improvement; at best it is a cessation of the homicidal insanity of the former policies of the Party. Those policies, crude, brutal, insane, out of the same basket as Hitler and Stalin, only ceased when Mao died in 1976.
It cannot be called an improvement because that attitude, the utter contempt that the CPC showed for the people of China back then is still part of its psyche today. The heart of a sociopath still beats underneath the identikit suits and sour expressions of the CPC leaders. That’s why there are still so many Mini-Tiananmen Squares.
‘Things are getting better’ blinds the people of China to the problems that are growing, swelling, metastasizing within China today. Poverty. Gender Imbalance. Crime. Psychologically warped only-children, 90 million of them. Dispossessed and despised migrant workers.
David Marriott and Karl Lacroix list the Five Armies as:-
- The poor
- The only children
- The migrant workers
- The criminals
- The single men
Again and again, talking to students and friends, I have found that problems are something that most people in China are simply unaware of. The entire Chinese education system is predicated on stopping young people from thinking – or at least, thinking about political solutions.
Though the threat of force (running from a shake-down by the local cops to a lengthy jail term and all the way to being beaten to death) awaits those who do voice an alternative political opinion in China, it is not force that is used to drive the political spirit from the young, but rather a more effective weapon – boredom. An endless diet of state-approved political rhetoric is taught from the first day of school to the last, and this diet is such a mix of preposterous nonsense and mind-numbing tedium that, surfeiting, the appetite sickens and dies.
Except for, of course, the Five Armies of Instability.
The Chinese people understand, in a vague sort of way, that China has problems such as poverty and crime. They watch it on TV, but they have little idea of the scope, the magnitude of these problems.
The same is true at the government level. China’s leaders are indeed aware of some of the problems, such as poverty and unrest in the countryside. But rather than take any serious measures to address these problems, their response is the only response tyrants know – force. Silence the protest. Crush those who speak out. Ignore the problem. Deny it. More police. More soldiers. More brutality. More ‘harmony.’ In reality, more candidates for the June 4th Remembrance Revolution (6/4RR).
It’s effective, for now. In the prosperous cities, among the middle classes, there really is a genuine belief that the future is bright. There is very little awareness of the vast and deep level of unhappiness outside the cities, even as there is no real understanding of the true extent of the city-based problems such as corruption and violent crime.
The CPC has done its job thoroughly. The people are docile, and never ask the difficult questions. They never look under the glitzy veneer of the good life in which they are immersed.
According to ‘Fault Lines on the Face of China: 50 Reasons Why China Will Never Be Great’ the five armies will not just ask. They will demand. They will take. Payback for this crime of ignorance which the CPC has forced on the people of China.
“These armies represent a colossal problem beyond the ability of Beijing to handle. Yet Beijing is giving very little thought to the looming catastrophe that they clearly indicate. The Party, in its obsessive quest for ‘harmony’ and ‘stability’ has kept a very tight lid on these problems, either downplaying them or refusing to acknowledge them.
That just increases the pressure. While the strength of the Party – backed by the huge force of the People’s Liberation Army and the People’s Armed Police – is currently able sit on it to keep the lid firmly jammed on, it will not be able to do so indefinitely.
When the pressure does finally escape, the explosive force on China will be profound.”
And, again, I ask all Olympic attendees -- when you are on or near any TV broadcast camera, make a ‘T’ for Tibet sign with your hands (like the ‘time out’ gesture) or make an ‘X’ (Xinjiang) sign by crossing your forearms, or two fingers.