Mark Collins – China: Top Dragon Really Unfolding His Ascendant Wings

Further to these posts,

Top Dragon is now C-in-C

Top Dragon Now More Powerful than Mao?

President Xi continues his relentless consolidation of power (is our prime minister paying any attention?): two stories:

1) NY Times:

China’s Antigraft Enforcers Take On a New Role: Policing Loyalty

xi.jpg
President Xi Jinping of China at the Great Hall of the People in September. The Communist Party’s anticorruption commission has assumed a growing role as political inquisitor, investigating the commitment of cadres to Mr. Xi and his agenda. Credit Jason Lee/Reuters

The investigators descend on government agencies and corporate boardrooms. They interrogate powerful officials and frequently rebuke them for lacking zeal. Most of all, they demand unflinching loyalty to President Xi Jinping and the Communist Party.

They are the inspectors from the party’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, and the humbling displays they have orchestrated recently in many of China’s most influential government agencies and largest corporations are the most prominent sign of their expanding authority…

2) Washington Post:

China’s plan to organize its society relies on ‘big data’ to rate everyone

BEHIND THE FIREWALL: How China tamed the Internet |This is part of a series examining the impact of China’s Great Firewall, a mechanism of Internet censorship and surveillance that affects nearly 700 million users.

Imagine a world where an authoritarian government monitors everything you do, amasses huge amounts of data on almost every interaction you make, and awards you a single score that measures how “trustworthy” you are.

In this world, anything from defaulting on a loan to criticizing the ruling party, from running a red light to failing to care for your parents properly, could cause you to lose points.

And in this world, your score becomes the ultimate truth of who you are — determining whether you can borrow money, get your children into the best schools or travel abroad; whether you get a room in a fancy hotel, a seat in a top restaurant — or even just get a date.

This is not the dystopian superstate of Steven Spielberg’s “Minority Report,” in which all-knowing police stop crime before it happens. But it could be China by 2020…

Sweet authoritarian–totalitarian?–dreams. On the other hand:

Xi’s China: Grumbling (and Rumbling?) in the PLA

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; he tweets @Mark3Ds

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