Charles Horner discusses China on “The John Batchelor Show.”
Charles Horner, senior fellow at the Hudson Institute and author of Rising China and Its Postmodern Fate: Memories of Empire in a New Global Context, in re: review of Tombstone, The Great Chinese Famine, 1958-1962, by Yang Jisheng, The PRC is so anxious abut the facts of the last fifty or sixty years because it hold power by claiming to be wholly correct, by understanding History as no one else can. “PRC” describes an apparat set up in 1949 to maintain its monopoly on power, a means of perfecting a kind of totalitarian rule – needed to break down resistance from family society, religion. Population was 800 mil, Party was ten per cent of that. First it need to control everyone’s knowledge of history of the Party. From a totalitarian perspective, Mao’s method is utilitarian. PRC faces 1.3 billion people – daunting, ungovernable, any little thing can lead to the crack that breaks. Lenin: Maintain the purpose but be flexible in tactics. Deng Xiaoping allowed rapid evolution in order to maintain power. Today: We’re at an inflection point; “left” vs “right,” and “reformists” vs. “nonreformists.” Propagandists, security workers, all sorts of tasks. The sops to the people have to grow ever greater; not the same regime it was fifty years ago. Defensive, fragile, rigid, vulnerable; the pervasive fear is the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union.