The China Model: Political Meritocracy and the Limits of Democracy


Daniel A. Bell - 2015
    But the Chinese political model does not fit neatly in either category. Over the past three decades, China has evolved a political system that can best be described as "political meritocracy." "The China Model" seeks to understand the ideals and the reality of this unique political system. How do the ideals of political meritocracy set the standard for evaluating political progress (and regress) in China? How can China avoid the disadvantages of political meritocracy? And how can political meritocracy best be combined with democracy? Daniel Bell answers these questions and more.Opening with a critique of "one person, one vote" as a way of choosing top leaders, Bell argues that Chinese-style political meritocracy can help to remedy the key flaws of electoral democracy. He discusses the advantages and pitfalls of political meritocracy, distinguishes between different ways of combining meritocracy and democracy, and argues that China has evolved a model of democratic meritocracy that is morally desirable and politically stable. Bell summarizes and evaluates the "China model"--meritocracy at the top, experimentation in the middle, and democracy at the bottom--and its implications for the rest of the world.A timely and original book that will stir up interest and debate, "The China Model" looks at a political system that not only has had a long history in China, but could prove to be the most important political development of the twenty-first century.

Will China Dominate the 21st Century


Jonathan Fenby - 2013
    It has to deal with political, economic, social and international tests, each of which involves structural difficulties that will put the system under strain. The picture of China invoked by admirers to argue that it will rule the world does not accord with reality.Based on Fenby's extensive knowledge of contemporary China, this punchy analysis offers a pragmatic view of where the PRC is heading at a time when its future is too important an issue for wishful theorizing.

End of an Era: How China's Authoritarian Revival Is Undermining Its Rise


Carl Minzner - 2018
    Core factors that characterized it-political stability, ideological openness, and rapid economic growth-are unraveling. Since the 1990s, Beijing's leaders have firmly rejected any fundamental reform of their authoritarian one-party political system, and on the surface, their efforts have been a success. But as Carl Minzner shows, a closer look at China's reform era reveals a different truth. Over the past three decades, a frozen political system has fueled both the rise of entrenched interests within the Communist Party itself, and the systematic underdevelopment of institutions of governance among state and society at large. Economic cleavages have widened. Social unrest has worsened. Ideological polarization has deepened. Now, to address these looming problems, China's leaders are progressively cannibalizing institutional norms and practices that have formed the bedrock of the regime's stability in the reform era. End of an Era explains how China arrived at this dangerous turning point, and outlines the potential outcomes that could result.

China's Asian Dream: Empire Building along the New Silk Road


Tom Miller - 2017
    Let her sleep, for when she wakes she will shake the world.” In 2014, President Xi Jinping triumphantly declared that the lion had awoken. Under Xi, China is pursuing an increasingly ambitious foreign policy with the aim of restoring its historical status as the dominant power in Asia. From the Mekong Basin to the Central Asian steppe, the country is wooing its neighbors with promises of new roads, railways, dams, and power grids.  Chinese trade and investment presents huge opportunities for China’s neighbors, and its ability to build much-needed infrastructure could assist in the development of some of the world’s poorest countries. Yet Chinas rise also threatens to reduce its neighbours to the status of exploited vassals. In Vietnam and Myanmar, resentment of Chinese encroachment has already incited anti-Chinese protests, and many countries in the region are seeking to counterbalance its influence by turning to the US and Japan. Combining a concise overview of the situation with on-the-ground reportage from over seven countries, China’s Asian Dream offers a fresh perspective on one of the most important questions of our time: what does China’s rise mean for the future of Asia and of the world?

Horsemen of the Trumpocalypse: The Dirty Dealers and Defenders of the Indefensible Who Are "Making America Great Again"


John Nichols - 2017
    Showing no inclination toward moderation, tolerance or genuine bipartisanship, he has assembled a team that is backed with billionaires, CEOs, rigid ideologues and a rogue's gallery of white nationalists, alt-right hatemongers, voter-suppression schemers, immigrant bashers and climate-change deniers. The people Trump is bringing into his inner circle and handing positions of immense authority make no secret of their determination to impose an uncompromising and ultimately unworkable conservative agenda on a country where most Americans did not vote for Donald Trump or the Congress that will advance his policies. The Trump team, consisting of famously controversial figures and little-known but potentially even more dangerous mandarins, may not have mandate. But it will have the power to remake American foreign policy, redistribute wealth upward and suppress wages, destroy unions, dismantle Medicare and Medicaid, undermine abortion rights and affirmative action, privatize and voucherize education, make health care a privilege rather than a right and create a climate of fear and intimidation for immigrants, refugees, religious and racial minorities and Americans who dare to dissent. This is about much more than one man; this is about a wrecking crew with the power to transform everything we know about America and to make our country and our world a more dangerous place. If we are going to navigate the next four years and have the tools to fight back, we need to know who will be handling the levers of power. And we need to know how to challenge their excesses.Enter John Nichols, veteran political correspondent at The Nation, who has been covering many of these deplorables for decades. Sticking to the hard facts and unafraid to dig deep into histories and the ideologies of the people who make up Trump's inner circle, Nichols will deliver a clear-eyed and complete guide to who these people really are. This is not a laundry list of the high-profile politicians we are already familiar with -- in these pages Nichols will examine and expose all the new power players, including those who operate below the headlines but that can still cause immeasurable damage.

Xi Jinping: The Backlash


Richard McGregor - 2019
    Finally, he is meeting resistance, both at home among disgruntled officials and disillusioned technocrats, and abroad from an emerging coalition of Western nations that seem determined to resist China’s geopolitical and high-tech expansion. With the United States and China at loggerheads, Richard McGregor outlines how the world came to be split in two.

The United States of Europe: The New Superpower and the End of American Supremacy


T.R. Reid - 2004
    It eschews military force but offers guaranteed health care and free university educations. And the new “United States of Europe” is determined to be a superpower. Tracing the EU’s emergence from the ruins of World War II and its influence everywhere from international courts to supermarket shelves, T. R. Reid explores the challenge it poses to American political and economic supremacy. The United States of Europe is essential reading.

Fixing Failed States: A Framework for Rebuilding a Fractured World


Ashraf Ghani - 2008
    The world's worst problems--terrorism, drugs and human trafficking, absolute poverty, ethnic conflict, disease, genocide--originate in such states, and the international community has devoted billions of dollars to solving the problem. Yet by and large the effort has not succeeded.Ashraf Ghani and Clare Lockhart have taken an active part in the effort to save failed states for many years, serving as World Bank officials, as advisers to the UN, and as high-level participants in the new government of Afghanistan. In Fixing Failed States, they describe the issue--vividly and convincingly--offering an on-the-ground picture of why past efforts have not worked and advancing a groundbreaking new solution to this most pressing of global crises. For the paperback edition, they have added a new preface that addresses the continuing crisis in light of ongoing governance problems in weak states like Afghanistan and the global financial recession. As they explain, many of these countries already have the resources they need, if only we knew how to connect them to global knowledge and put them to work in the right way. Their state-building strategy, which assigns responsibility equally among the international community, national leaders, and citizens, maps out a clear path to political and economic stability. The authors provide a practical framework for achieving these ends, supporting their case with first-hand examples of struggling territories such as Afghanistan, Sudan, Kosovo and Nepal as well as the world's success stories--Singapore, Ireland, and even the American South.

The Debt Bomb: A Bold Plan to Stop Washington from Bankrupting America


Tom A. Coburn - 2012
    Senator Tom Coburn reveals the fascinating, maddening story of how we got to this point of fiscal crisis—and how we can escape.Long before America’s recent economic downturn, beltway politicians knew the U.S. was going bankrupt. Yet even after several so-called “change” elections, the government has continued its wasteful ways in the face of imminent danger. With passion and clarity, Coburn explains why Washington resists change so fiercely and offers controversial yet commonsense solutions to secure the nation’s future.At a time when millions of Americans are speculating about what is broken in Washington, The Debt Bomb is a candid, thoughtful, non-partisan exposé of the real problems inside our government. Coburn challenges the conventional wisdom that blames lobbyists, gridlock, and obstructionism, and places the responsibility squarely where it belongs: on members of Congress in both parties who won’t let go of the perks of power to serve the true interests of the nation—unless enough citizens take bold steps to demand action.“Democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There was never a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.” —John AdamsThroughout a distinguished career as a business owner, physician, and U.S. senator, Tom Coburn has watched his beloved republic careen down a suicidal path. Today, the nation stands on the precipice of financial ruin, a disaster far more dangerous to our safety than any terrorist threats we face. Yet Coburn believes there is still hope—if enough Americans are willing to shake the corridors of Washington and demand action.With an insider’s keen eye and a caregiver’s deft touch, Coburn diagnoses the mess that career politicians have made of things while misusing their sacred charge to govern.Coburn’s incisive analysis:Reveals the root causes of America’s escalating financial crisis Exposes Washington’s destructive appetite for wasteful spending, power grabs, backroom deals, and quick non-fixes Rises above partisanship to implicate elected officials of all stripes in steering the nation off course Lays out a commonsense guide to restoring order Concludes with a clarion call and sound advice for Americans who would dedicate themselves to defusing the debt bomb Above all, Coburn believes the United States can continue as a beacon of opportunity for future generations—but how we act today will determine whether we deliver the nation to our children and grandchildren fully alive, on life support, or without a pulse.

Secret Empires: How the American Political Class Hides Corruption and Enriches Family and Friends


Peter Schweizer - 2018
    From the New York Times bestselling author of Clinton Cash comes an explosive new political expose!

Confronting Collapse: The Crisis of Energy and Money in a Post Peak Oil World: A 25-Point Program for Action


Michael C. Ruppert - 2009
    Shortages, along with resulting price increases, threaten industrialized civilization, the global economy, and our entire way of life.In Confronting Collapse, author Michael C. Ruppert, a former LAPD narcotics officer turned investigative journalist, details the intricate connections between money and energy, including the ways in which oil shortages and price spikes triggered the economic crash that began in September 2008. Given the 96 percent correlation between economic growth and greenhouse gas emissions and the unlikelihood of economic growth without a spike in energy use, Ruppert argues that we are not, in fact, on the verge of economic recovery, but on the verge of complete collapse.Ruppert's truth is not merely inconvenient. It is utterly devastating.But there is still hope. Ruppert outlines a 25-point plan of action, including the creation of a second strategic petroleum reserve for the use of state and local governments, the immediate implementation of a national Feed-in Tariff mandating that electric utilities pay 3 percent above market rates for all surplus electricity generated from renewable sources, a thorough assessment of soil conditions nationwide, and an emergency action plan for soil restoration and sustainable agriculture.

The China Fantasy: How Our Leaders Explain Away Chinese Repression


James Mann - 2003
    The Soothing Scenario contends that the successful spread of capitalism will gradually bring about a development of democratic institutions, free elections, independent judiciary, and a progressive human rights policy. In the Upheaval Scenario, the contradictions in Chinese society between rich and poor, between cities and the countryside, and between the openness of the economy and the unyielding Leninist system will eventually lead to a revolution, chaos, or collapse. Against this backdrop, Mann poses a third scenario and asks, What will happen if Chinese capitalism continues to evolve and expand but the government fails to liberalize? What then and why should this third scenario matter to Americans? Mann explores this alternate possibility and—in this must-read book for anyone interested in international politics—offers a startling vision of our future with China that will have a profound impact for decades to come.

In Service of the Republic: The Art and Science of Economic Policy


Vijay Kelkar - 2019
    

China's Future


David Shambaugh - 2016
    Having enjoyed unprecedented levels of growth, China is at a critical juncture in the development of its economy, society, polity, national security, and international relations. The direction the nation takes at this turning point will determine whether it stalls or continues to develop and prosper.Will China be successful in implementing a new wave of transformational reforms that could last decades and make it the world's leading superpower? Or will its leaders shy away from the drastic changes required because the regime's power is at risk? If so, will that lead to prolonged stagnation or even regime collapse? Might China move down a more liberal or even democratic path? Or will China instead emerge as a hard, authoritarian and aggressive superstate?In this new book, David Shambaugh argues that these potential pathways are all possibilities - but they depend on key decisions yet to be made by China's leaders, different pressures from within Chinese society, as well as actions taken by other nations. Assessing these scenarios and their implications, he offers a thoughtful and clear study of China's future for all those seeking to understand the country's likely trajectory over the coming decade and beyond.

Vigil: Hong Kong on the Brink


Jeffrey Wasserstrom - 2020
    The unraveling of Hong Kong, on the other hand, shatters the grand illusion of China ever having the intention of allowing democratic norms to take root inside its borders. Hong Kong’s people were subjects of the British Empire for more than a hundred years, and now seem destined to remain the subordinates of today’s greatest rising power.