UW-Madison POLISCI 106 - China II (5 pages)

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China II

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China II


This lecture described China's political system and it's party-state relations.

Lecture number:
Lecture Note
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Polisci 106 - Introduction to Comparative Politics
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POLI SCI 106 1ST Edition Lecture 20 Outline of Last Lecture 1 Three Types of Non Democratic Regimes 2 Totalitarian Regimes 3 Sultanistic Regimes 4 Authoritarian Regimes 5 Maoism 6 Despite End of Maoism 7 Party State 1 Guardianship 8 Party State II The Mass Line Outline of Current Lecture 1 Formal State Institutions 2 Legislature 3 Executive 4 Communist Party 5 Party Structure 6 Party State Relations 7 Party State Relations Informal Politics 8 Challenges and Reforms 9 Challenges and Reforms Accountability Mechanisms 10 Challenges and Reforms Successions 11 Challenges and Reforms Building a Legal System 12 Challenges and Reforms Reforming the Economy Current Lecture China II Formal State Institutions Formally a parliamentary system unicameral legislature fused executive and legislative unitary state largely ceremonial president judiciary with no power of judicial review But operates differently in practice party leaders and organizations matter most not highly institutionalized Legislature These notes represent a detailed interpretation of the professor s lecture GradeBuddy is best used as a supplement to your own notes not as a substitute National People s Congress NPC formally most powerful organ passes laws elects and supervises government 2 987 members indirectly elected by provincial congresses for 5 years 2 3 CPC meets 2 weeks per year Standing Committee 175 members modifies legislation interprets law But power constrained by party Largely a rubber stamp but some recent assertiveness Executive State Council Government 35 full members responsible to NPC Premier Li Keqiang in power since 2012 members appointed by premier and then confirmed by NPC Standing Committee 10 generalists drafts legislation 25 ministry heads President Xi Jinping Formally quite weak elected by NPC appoints Premier and State Council but with NPC approval no formal veto In practice dominates state Communist Party Controls all state functions Leninist vanguard party 87 million members Fill most important state and non state positions General Secretary Xi Jinping President of PRC head of military Party Structure Formal power proportional to size Actual power inversely proportional to size National Party Congress 2 270 members different than National People s Congress meets once every 5 years elects top party leaders approves major policy goals Central Committee 204 full members hold posts in central and provincial governments main policymakers but often not in capital Top leadership Politburo 25 members elected by Central Committee but candidates approved by sitting Politburo prior to election also top state leaders often in State Council all have important party positions Politburo Standing Committee Top 7 leaders including General Secretary Party State Relations Party strictly moderates representation and participation Party leads policy making leaders have high level state and party posts authority stems from both positions but party position predominates major state or social organizations have party representatives in them chosen by party nomenklatura party can discipline members in place of state ex corruption cases party in effect leads state with few legal constraints Party State Relations Informal Politics Informal politics non codified political institutions and behaviors Party factionalism officially forbidden but exists in practice patronage networks based on personal ties university region workplace Communist Youth League Princelings also policy based reformers vs hardliners Matrix Muddle complicated matrix made of lines of authority and accountability officials have multiple bosses in both state and party duplicate bureaucratic positions state and party division of labor separation of power who has final say all unclear Leadership Small Groups and Xitongs Systems informal leader groups and bureaucracies that cross official party and state bureaucratic lines Information political actors secretaries assistants to top leaders elders former top leaders Challenges and Reforms Most political reforms are examples of institutionalization make politics and governing predictable regular transparent less subject to individual caprice many forms new social norms conventions and procedures formal laws and regulations organizations that enforce a process but incomplete informal politics will always be a part of every political system Institutionalization does not mean democratization making government more regular follow procedures and rules regime wants to institutionalize not willing to democratize not willing to democratize 1989 Tiananmen protests demanded some degree of democratization unlike Soviet Bloc China chose force to end the protests Now is a relatively stable non democracy Challenges and Reforms Accountability Mechanisms Accountability upwards formal Cadre Evaluation System leaders given performance targets on economics family planning social stability etc career advancement and bonuses for success demotion for failure informal factional ties patron client relationships lower level officials support their leaders above Accountability downwards Formal all new in last 30 years local elections Office of Letters and Visits complaint office Open Government Initiative making law making and policy process more transparent people can make suggestions administrative litigation Informal personal ties with leaders including bribery ultimately threat of social disturbance Challenges and Reforms Successions Who is the top leader Before Paramount Leader Mao later Den Xiaoping Now CPC General Secretary Premier 2nd in charge How are they replaced Before leader died or purged rarely retired Now norm of two 5 year terms for top leaders Politburo and Standing Committee chosen largely by consensus by current Politburo and Elders Challenges and Reforms Building a Legal System lawmaking and regulation before laws are bourgeois tools to control masses rules should come from the people who understand right and wrong hence few codified laws rules did not apply equally subject to interpretation lawmaking and regulation now explosion of law and regulations growing legal profession laws protecting rights especially property rights and contracts fewer for civil and political rights laws more technical and professional still often intentionally ambiguous Still not a rule of law system law not fully institutionalized most laws still used to control population state and especially party not very constrained by law law on

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