Cheng Xiaonong: The Survival Anxiety of Communist Regimes

Communist regimes around the world share various existential anxieties and then create similar historical sins to each other. The communist regimes in East Germany, Czechoslovakia, and Poland all committed similar historical sins in the decades prior to the June 4 crackdown by the Chinese Communist Party. Communist regimes also blocked the truth about historical sins because of existential anxiety. The institutional inferiority complex of communist regimes usually generates jealousy out of weakness and hatred, and the weaker they are, the more they hate the developed democracies; at the same time, the survival anxiety of communist powers also gives rise to extremely strong international ambitions and fantasies of dominating the international community by any means necessary. But among all the presidents of the United States in the past 40 years, except Reagan and Trump, no one is willing to penetrate the mystery.

I. The Chinese Communist Party’s survival anxiety causes historical evils

“The June Fourth crackdown is an eternal taboo for the Chinese Communist Party, because it is a historical evil that the authorities can only shut down and cannot face. Under the CCP’s rule, the same historical evils are numerous, from “agricultural collectivization” to “anti-rightist”, from “three-year famine” to “cultural revolution”, and from “June 4” to “cultural revolution”. From “agricultural collectivization” to “anti-rightist”, from “three-year famine” to “cultural revolution”, from “June Fourth” to “layoff”, each evil was caused by the communist regime’s anxiety for survival.

The “collectivization of agriculture” deprived the Communist Party of the land promised to the peasants in the land reform in order to maximize agricultural output and raise resources for the forced development of the military industry, without which the Communist Party was afraid of being “beaten”, both by the United States and by the Soviet Union. The Chinese Communist Party was afraid of being “beaten”, both by the United States and the Soviet Union.

The “anti-rightist” movement started from the people’s dissatisfaction with the CCP’s policies, and cultural figures who dared to speak out for the people became the target of “making an example of the monkey”.

The “Three-Year Famine” was motivated by Mao Zedong’s survival anxiety of “striving to be the boss” and slipping from the “Great Leap Forward” to the “Great Famine “In order to prevent the rural starving people from flowing into the cities and damaging the image of the Communist regime, he organized the militia to block them in the villages without food and starve them alive. 30 million lives died at the hands of the Chinese Communist Party, while Mao concentrated his financial resources on building the atomic bomb.

“The motivation of the Cultural Revolution was also Mao’s personal anxiety for survival, because Liu Shaoqi’s economic policy was slightly popular, and Mao was willing to overturn the “conference table” in Zhongnanhai, and to reorganize Mao’s personal power system, he was willing to push the whole country into “Ten years of turmoil”.

The economic reforms had already begun to bear fruit, and as the democratic trend entered university campuses, students raised their voices for democracy. Although they were just a peaceful petition, they immediately made Deng Xiaoping and a group of Chinese Communist Party bigwigs tense to the extreme, so hundreds of thousands of troops secretly entered the capital as if they were enemies, until finally tanks were deployed to shoot down. “The June 4 Incident killed many young people who were calling for democracy and ended any possibility of peaceful political reform in China.

“The fundamentalist Marxist system of total public ownership and planned economy sent most of the country’s enterprises to the brink of bankruptcy in the mid-1990s, and the state-owned banks that financed their survival were about to collapse. In order to survive the regime, Zhu Rongji implemented the total privatization of SOEs, allowing the directors of SOEs in small and medium-sized enterprises to take over the enterprises privately, while “laying off” tens of millions of SOE employees as sacrificial lambs.

Reform proves that the CCP’s “revolution” is a historical crime

It can be said that the Chinese Communist Party has been in a state of existential anxiety since its establishment, and it has been, is, and will remain so. Whether its propaganda slogans are grandiose, such as “catching up with Britain and surpassing the United States” in the 1950s and “rising up” today, or bitter appeals, such as “the emperor and the revisionists will never die against me ” and “the national economy is on the verge of collapse” before the reform, it is only to inspire the people and make them “struggle” for the authorities to get rid of the anxiety of survival.

In fact, the root cause of the Communist Party’s survival anxiety is the inherent crisis of the system itself, and some people in the Communist countries of Eastern Europe saw it very clearly back then. On that occasion, a Hungarian economist said in a sarcastic tone that the so-called socialism was nothing but a transitional period from capitalism to capitalism. What he meant was that sooner or later, after the communist countries had eliminated capitalism, they would have to go back to capitalism again. The economic reforms in China, Vietnam, and Cuba also proved that the traditional socialist system was abandoned by these communist regimes and replaced by the capitalist economic system that had been eliminated.

In 2009 I proposed the term “two decades”, which means that China from 1949 to 2009 can be roughly divided into two 30-year periods, the first 30 years of which were characterized by “revolution” (from the “socialist revolution” of the 1950s to the “socialist revolution” of the 1960s). socialist revolution” in the 1950s to “continuing revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat” in the 1960s), and “development” in the latter 30 years (the most typical one being “development is the hard truth”). “). If we separate the first 30 years from the second 30 years, the “achievements” propagated in the official media seem logical; if we look at the two phases together, the conclusion is different.

For the latter 30 years, the official favorite theme word is “reform and opening up”. China has indeed become market-oriented and integrated into economic globalization, and the CCP seems to have “taken great credit” for this; if we look at the first 30 years, it is a different story. After the Communist Party’s overwhelming “tossing and turning”, the economic system returned to its starting point 60 years later. “The object of the “reform” is not the pre-revolutionary system, but the “achievements” established by the “revolution”. Therefore, the success of “reform” is precisely the negation of “revolution”; “reform” is just an act to make up for mistakes, like a housekeeper who demolishes his master’s mansion and then rebuilds it. What is the merit of that?

The paradox of the two 30-year achievements is clear: if the “reform” is brilliant, what is the merit of the “revolution”? If the “revolution” is not to be belittled, how can the “reform” be justified? Deng Xiaoping emphasized “no argument” because he could not justify himself and did not know how to get rid of such a paradox. As far as the construction of the economic system is concerned, the achievements of the rulers in those 60 years, when combined, are at best a balance of merits and demerits. Further, the “revolution” established a new type of authoritarian system, and the reform consolidated it with a change in the economic system, the main beneficiaries of which were always the ruling clique that hid itself behind the “people.

I was the subject of a lengthy interview with the French broadcaster, which is still being circulated in China, although the name of the interviewee has been changed. Later, Xi Jinping said in his speech at the Central Party School that “the two 30 years should not be denied to each other”; he could not refute it from the reasoning, so he had to give an order to block it.

The Last Survival Anxiety of East Germany

Communist regimes all over the world have all kinds of existential anxiety and therefore have created similar historical evils. I once heard the economic think-tank of the East German authorities talk about the survival anxiety of the East German Communist Party.

In 1989 I was a visiting scholar at the German Institute for Economic Research in West Berlin, and I often went to East Berlin to see the Chinese students there, who did not have West German visas and therefore could not go to West Berlin. One time an international student in East Germany told me that an East German professor wanted to meet me. In order to avoid the eyes and ears of the East German secret police, the economics professor agreed to wait for me on the side of the road outside a subway station in the north of East Berlin and gave me his car license plate number. I got into his car right on time and went all the way to his small cottage in the far suburbs before he dared to talk at ease.

He introduced me to his social status in East Germany as a “professor of capitalism”. Although East German residents could go to the Soviet Union and Eastern European countries, and there was a mutual visa waiver agreement with China, only a few people trusted by the East German authorities could go to China or Vietnam on special passports, called “capitalist professors”, and their passports to China were called “capitalist passports They were called “capitalist professors” and their passports to China were called “capitalist passports. The East German authorities regarded China as an alien to the communist state and saw the Chinese reforms as a restoration of capitalism, which is how the term “capitalist professor” came to be used. This man worked at the Higher School of Economics in East Germany and asked me to meet him because he wanted to learn about the situation in China.

He revealed to me a secret that West German economists did not know. He was part of an economic research team organized by the East German authorities to complete a research project entrusted to him by the East German General Secretary Honecker, entitled “When will the East German economy surpass that of West Germany? This task stemmed from the inferiority complex of the East German authorities, who, although the most economically developed country in the Soviet bloc, lagged far behind West Germany and had long relied on the collection of tolls for overland traffic from West Germany to West Berlin, which was surrounded by East German territory, to balance the economy.

The East German professor told me that after six months of research, they secretly submitted a report to Honecker, concluding that on a per capita basis, the East German economy could never surpass that of West Germany, and that it would be very difficult for the per capita GDP to reach a fraction of that of West Germany. This conclusion, of course, was extremely disappointing to Honecker, who was filled with existential anxiety, and he ordered that this internal report be sealed forever as a top state secret. Honecker shared the same thinking as other party chiefs of the Red regime, fearing that the Red regime would not last.

IV. International Ambitions and Survival Anxiety of the Communist Regime

At the same time, the communist regime’s inferiority complex usually gives rise to jealousy and hatred because of its weakness, and the weaker it is, the more it hates developed democracies. At the same time, the communist power’s survival anxiety also gives rise to strong international ambitions, imagining that it can get rid of its backwardness by any means, and once it gains strength, it will think of dominating the international community, at least in the areas where it can do so, and its highest goal is to overpower the United States.

The Red Power, driven by its international ambitions, has always had a dream of rising to power. Its education and propaganda are also always characterized by two things: the United States is on the decline and the Red Power is on the rise. Young people who grow up in such countries are permanently brainwashed, and many simple-minded people spend their lives believing in the official propaganda. And from time to time, their party chiefs make threatening “grand statements”.

On November 18, 1956, at a reception at the Polish embassy in Moscow to welcome Gomulka, the general secretary of the Polish United Workers’ Party, Khrushchev, the first secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, declared to Western diplomats to their faces, “We will bury you” (Мываспохороним!). At that time the Soviet Union took away rocket technology and experts from Germany, which had been defeated in World War II, accelerated the development of missiles, launched spacecraft first, and thought that it could already surpass the United States.

It is no coincidence that Mao Zedong received Ted Hill, the head of the Maoist Communist Party in Australia, in November 1968 and also expressed his desire to rule the world: “In my opinion, the world needs to be unified. Many people in history, including the Mongols, the Romans, Alexander the Great, Napoleon, and the British Empire, wanted to unify the world. Today the United States and the Soviet Union both want to unify the world. Hitler also wanted to unify the world. But they all failed. It seems to me that the possibility of unifying the world is still there, and I think that the world can be unified… These two countries (meaning the U.S. and the Soviet Union) have too small a population and not enough manpower to spread out; and they are afraid of a nuclear war; they are not afraid of wiping out the people of other countries, but they are afraid that their own people will be wiped out. In another five years, the situation in our country will be better… in another five years…” Mao’s implication was that he could then begin to deploy his grand dream of unifying the world. Mao believed that the task of unifying the world was his because China had many people, hundreds of millions dead, and people fighting wars.

The Red Regime’s international ambition and existential anxiety go hand in hand; existential anxiety breeds international ambition, and international ambition creates new existential anxiety. This is how the Soviet-American Cold War and the Sino-American Cold War were ignited. From this perspective, the apparent confrontation between the Red powers and the United States is a result of values; in fact, the real source of confrontation between the two sides is the Red powers’ inherent existential anxiety and international ambition. However, from Bush Sr. to Clinton, from Obama to Biden, no one is willing to penetrate the mystery; as for the fantasy of using Clinton’s “patronage” policy to erode the CCP’s existential anxiety and international ambition, or using Obama’s “engagement” policy to convince the CCP that the CCP is a “good” country. As for the fantasy of using Clinton’s “patronage” policy to erode the CCP’s existential anxiety and international ambition, or using Obama’s “engagement” policy to convince the CCP, it only reflects the stupidity of these American politicians and their naive ignorance of the CCP regime.