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The policy of Politics in Command by Mao Zedong - Essay Example

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This essay "The policy of Politics in Command by Mao Zedong" will answer the question of whether Mao’s policy of “Politics in Command” set the agenda for the Chinese economy in the last half of the 20th century. It will present how it became a failure and was not a dominant factor in the period’s economic and political movements…
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Download file to see previous pages In the first half of the twentieth-century state, policy eliminated private industry and commerce resulting in a high degree of the centralized and unified planned economy. But despite this, the party-state showed symptoms of incapacity in terms of confronting modernization and economic growth. Aiko Ikeo (1997) cited an example:
In the early stages of the creation of New China, the method of ‘three persons’ food eaten by five’ was carried out, in an effort to assist the unemployed. During the First Five-year Plan, unemployment was basically eliminated, but because of the lower level of productive forces, in order to guarantee universal employment and individual entitlement to rations, only low-wage policies could work… The parity pattern of low wages, high employment and low consumption cause universal overstaffing, inefficiency and low benefits. (p. 166)
By 1960 Mao Zedong launched the self-reliance model anchored on the guiding thought of “politics in command”. This theory stressed the replacement of personal desire for material and economic interests with noble political sentiments and selfless devoted spirit. This guiding thought replaced the equalitarian thought of equal wealth distribution policy in the 1950s. (Ikeo, p. 166) The basic theme of this campaign was the proper relationship between politics and business, with the basic goal of ensuring that politics is placed at the fore. More importantly, this introduced a decentralization drive that sought to give the party more control over the economy. This was achieved by having the provincial party committees supervise economic enterprises and perform a coordinating role. (Bailey 2001, p. 170) In an effort to achieve greater party control, the influence of central planning ministries was reduced.
The ‘politics in command’ policy was implemented, in effect abolishing the previous equalitarian thoughts of equal distribution of wealth for a time, and failed in its attempt at uplifting China’s economy. ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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