[MUSIC] >> Unfortunately, part of Xi's strategy to bring about the four comprehensives involves very serious constraints on society and ideology. Now, even before Xi came to power actually, back in the 2000s, we already started to see a backtracking on village elections and village democracy. Because a fear emerged within the party that they were allowing two power centers to come out in the villages. One who was elected, the leader of the committee, the villagers committee, and the party secretary. And as long as the village committee director was elected, he seemed to have greater legitimacy in the eyes of the peasants. So the party decided to allow the party secretary to run for the post of village director, whereas before they had decided to split those two posts and now the village secretary, the party secretaries, are allowed to run again combining those two posts. Then we lose a kind of institutional pluralism, and there's no competition at the local level. And the CCP really controls the nominations in many of the villages and has not allowed a transition from the village elections to township elections, which is something that was raised way back in 1997 at the 16th Party Congress. More recently, we have seen some more serious constraints on intellectuals, academics, and students. Now even before those, again, back under Hu Jintao in 2004, we saw a suppression of this trend that had been emerging where public intellectuals were writing articles in newspapers, speaking on television, and advocating policies. And the party decided that it's not the job of these autonomous, independent intellectuals to advocate policies, particularly within the public realm and in the media, and it's cut them off. Didn't arrest them, but it kept them quiet, no longer allowing them to use the media to advocate these new policies. And overall, one could say that there was been a limited tradition in China of intellectuals publicly challenging the state. Some would argue that intellectuals have always just really wanted power. I'm not so sure if that's as true today, but I think it's still partly true. And we've seen now under Xi more constraints on free discussion on university campuses, students are supposed to be studying Marxism, Leninism at university again, and constraints on the use of foreign teaching materials. People are supposed to report, teachers are supposed to report when they use foreign teaching materials, though what I understand from some of them is that they are not doing it. Now in the media, in the question of the media, we have seen even before Xi Jinping back in 2010 under Hu Jintao, we saw tighter constraints on the media, and this is a small list here of a group of articles or topics raised in a Japanese report in Asahi Shimbun back in 2010. The whole thing listed 18 subjects that were not allowed to be discussed in the Chinese media. One of them, high medical fees, because people hate the directors of hospitals, because they believe that the directors of hospitals are overcharging them, and getting very rich, and driving fancy cars. So that's a group that people see as a corrupt group, and it's important to remember this is 2010, before Xi began his much more comprehensive anti-corruption struggle. Another one being, what's a good one here? Let's just see. Well, this was a very big issue, the collapse of schools in 2008, the Sichuan earthquake, because there was the belief that there was a great deal of corruption that had gone on and that builders and local officials had colluded together to cut back on monies going into the schools and put it in their pockets. And therefore, when this huge earthquake happened in 2008 in Sichuan, many of the people who died were actually students. We now have seen a new document that has come out from the Communist party, document number nine, central document number nine, which lays out a number of Western values that it sees as unacceptable. And it forbids the propagation, the spreading of those values within China. One of the first one's is constitutionalism. The idea of separation of power, this tripartite, three branches of separation of powers, borrowing very much from the United States. Any discussion of a multi-party system, the idea of universal suffrage, which is actually going on in Hong Kong, but is not something that the leadership today wants to happen in China. And this idea of somehow judicial independence, that the judiciary is totally independent of the Communist party. That's just not where the party wants to go yet. Universe, this idea of universal values that somehow the world has these values, they're actually often seen to be western values. And they challenged the idea that the CCP wants, that it has its own values, that it wants people to support, which are not necessarily the same as these universal values. Civil society that I talked about, which Chinese people may want to get more involved. A kind of agreement between the society and the state, that is also forbidden to be discussed. Because it asserts the possibility that the Communist party's social base is really not going to support the party as closely as it should, were a kind of civil society to emerge. You're not allowed to talk about Neoliberalism. Because that neoliberalism as an ideology really says get the state out of the economy. And this is something that China insists that the state particularly under Marco-Leninism this is something that the state should still be involved in the national economy. Western news views, right? That's just no not acceptable, because the party wants to maintain its monopoly on information. A really interesting one is historical, what the Chinese call, historical nihilism, which really denies the values of the Maoist era. And therefore, what we've seen is a downplaying of the number of deaths in the famine. Many people are now saying that there are only 2 million people died, as compared to 20 or 30 million people died, because they don't want to discuss the fact that there were all these mistakes before the reform process began. And we've seen overall a very strong suppression of civil society. Now this comes about because Xi, while he wants to improve the environment, and he's clearly targeted at corruption, he sees only danger for the party if it allows society to engage on these issues without CCP leadership. So he does not want society to be actively challenging corrupt officials or environmental problems unless they are working in an NGO that is officially affiliated with the government ministry, and therefore working within the legal system. We've seen, recently, dozens of arrests of lawyers in a crackdown on the rights movement in China. We've now seen the introduction, though it still hasn't been passed at this point, a new law on non governmental organizations, particularly the role of international non governmental organizations, foreign NGOs, which will give the governments power to oversee these NGOs and any domestic NGO that works with these foreign NGOs will now come under police supervision. And so, many domestic NGOs that rely on foreign support, will not be willing to engage in any kind of cooperation with these international NGOs.