Serpenza and C-Milk, two guys who spent years on the ground in China, and who married Chinese wives, are both assuring us that, no matter how dire the economic situation in China is looking, Xi and the CCP are not going to lose power.
I have long assumed that they would. It seems the general rule that, once the GDP per person hits about the $10,000 US per annum range, authoritarian nations transition to democracy. A self-sufficient middle class develops the strength to stand up to overly intrusive government at about this point.
Serpenza and C-Milk argue that, with new technology, this is no longer true. China is able to track everyone minute by minute through their smartphones and surveillance cameras. They have crushed all points of possible opposition. It is 1984 and Big Brother.
This is doubly alarming, because the Canadian government seems to be reproducing, step by step, the Chinese model. Control over the media, including social media. A crackdown on truckers and farmers, the sectors of the population most able to function independent of government. Freezing bank accounts and criminalizing protest. Imposing electronic surveillance with ArriveCan.
One marvels at how they dare do some of the things they are doing. Don’t they fear an eventual backlash from the voters?
Maybe not. Maybe soon there will be no more real votes or voters.
The same process seems to be moving along smarlty in Europe and the US as well.
I still think C-Milk and Serpenza are wrong, and that they will fail. While the new technology can be used to vastly expand government and corporate control, it also puts a computer and a communications hub in everyone’s palm. On balance, I think the stream of new information will outpace the government’s ability to control it. Thanks also to the “weaponized autism” of the nerds. The increase in authoritarianism is exactly because the bullies feel they are losing control.
I say the whole criminal enterprise collapses, and soon. I suspect China first. All it really takes is for some well-positioned military unit to refuse orders to fire on a crowd.
At a minimum, anyone who, up until the start of the pandemic, still basically trusted government, now looks foolish.