How to know the Chinese Communist Party


July 1 marked the centennial of the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC), and the CPC took the opportunity early on to glorify itself, constantly emphasizing the “greatness, glory and correctness” of the CPC. Such self-aggrandizement is of course no longer marketable, and I am afraid that the members of the writing team of the CPSU themselves do not believe every word they write. But on the other hand, the Communist Party has had and is still having a great impact on the development of Chinese society in the past 100 years. We certainly do not agree with the statement that “without the Communist Party there would be no new China,” but it is certain that China would be a different place today without the Communist Party. It is necessary to analyze and understand such a century-old party, which has shaped the fate of China’s development, on the occasion of its centennial. I have some simple thoughts, which I would like to share with my friends in a few times.

One of them is about the violent nature. We must realize that from the first day of its establishment to the present, the Chinese Communist Party has had a distinctive quality, that is, “violence”. It is a party that worships violence, fetishizes violence, is founded on the call of violence, expands its political power by violence, seizes power by violence, and maintains and consolidates its rule by violence. This party, because it relies on violence for everything, is inherently not equipped to naturally improve into a modern party. Nor can we imagine that it will be willing to solve social conflicts in a modern and civilized way. Even in 1989, after it had been in power for forty years, when the people demanded reforms from it, it resorted to violence. This proves that violence has become the party’s habitual approach to solving problems.

More importantly, violence is no longer just an act; it has profoundly influenced the CCP’s mindset, making the CCP’s political line also characterized by violence. Such a line has permeated the soul of the party and has become the deepest foundation of the CCP’s various ideas and policies. The influence of violence on the CCP began when it was an infant and has intensified and deepened over the past 100 years. It can be said that the CCP has developed a path dependence on violence and it is impossible to get rid of its influence. It is very important to recognize this point because only by recognizing the violent nature of the CCP can we discard those false illusions and face up to the enormity of ending the CCP’s one-party dictatorship and the price it will surely pay.

Second, about legitimacy. It has been 100 years since the CCP was founded and 72 years since it came to power in China, so we seem to have gotten used to the legitimacy of the CCP as the ruling party. But in fact, we should realize that the CCP has no procedural legitimacy in exercising its ruling power in China. The CCP established its rule by means of war. After defeating the Kuomintang, the CCP declared the establishment of the People’s Republic of China on its own. This process was never followed by elections, the minimum criterion for establishing legitimacy.

Despite the recognition of the People’s Republic of China by the rest of the world, the legitimacy of a regime is never based only on the recognition of other countries; what is needed is the recognition of its own people. In this regard, the CCP claims that it is embraced by the whole nation, but cannot produce any concrete evidence. In its 72 years of existence, the CCP has never proven the legitimacy of its rule in a legitimate way. The CCP claims to “serve the people,” but the Chinese people have never once had the opportunity to freely express their willingness to accept such “service” by voting. What’s more, as a political party with organizational structures at all levels, the CCP has not even registered as a political party with the Ministry of Civil Affairs. Therefore, strictly speaking, the CCP itself is an illegal organization. There is certainly no legitimacy to the rule of an illegal organization.

If they were really confident, they should open up the elections and let the results establish the legitimacy of their rule and prove that they are indeed supported by the people. No matter how confident they talk, they never dare to confirm their legitimacy through formal means, which shows that they themselves have no confidence in their own legitimacy, so on what basis can we recognize the legitimacy of its rule? This is the second problem I want to talk about.


We have talked about the two characteristics of the Chinese Communist Party, the violent nature and the illegitimacy that it has, in a hundred-year review. In addition to that, to recognize the nature of the Chinese Communist Party, we have to see other characteristics of it.

The third characteristic is that we must recognize that the Chinese Communist Party is not really a political party in the modern sense, although it has the word “party” in its name. We know that one of the most basic characteristics of modern political parties is that they are closely related to elections. The Republican Party and the Democratic Party in the United States do not have much party activity in general, and their members only confirm their party status at the time of each election. The so-called political parties govern by putting up their own candidates in elections and fighting to get the leadership of the government. But in China, there are no elections in the real sense. The CCP does not need to confirm its rule through elections, nor does it need to consider public opinion in order to win or lose power. Since the CCP is not a political party, what kind of organization is it?

To a large extent, the CCP is more akin to a gang organization with feudal nature. Of course, it is a very large gang organization that holds state power. Why do you say so?

First, in terms of its leadership structure, the leadership of modern political parties is also elected by the party, but the leaders at all levels of the CCP are not really elected, but are recommended by the party committees at all levels, examined by the organizing departments at all levels, and appointed directly by the party committees at the higher levels, and party members have no right to supervise their superiors, but only the obligation to obey them, which is typical of a gang.

Second, the Communist Party’s substantive top leaders have the dictatorial nature of feudal emperors. From Mao Zedong to Deng Xiaoping, even though they did not nominally hold party posts, they were still the supreme leaders of the party in practice, and had the authority to speak without any supervision, and could have the power of life and death over party officials at all levels, and could dictate the policies of the country all by themselves. In Xi Jinping’s time, the absolute obedience of the entire party to the supreme leader is still established. The top leaders of the CCP are no different from the emperors of the feudal era in terms of power, and even more authoritarian than the emperors, with the characteristic that party secretaries at all levels decide all matters under them, and that they can make decisions without any position as long as they are recognized as “bosses”, just like the gang organizations in Chinese history. The attributes of a political party in the modern sense are the same.

Third, political parties in the modern sense do not consider loyalty to the party to be the highest principle of the organization. Not only in the United States, but also in Taiwan, where democracy has just been established, it is normal for individuals to leave their original political party and join another party or even an opposition party, and they are not disciplined or sanctioned by their own party for doing so. However, what the CCP emphasizes most is absolute loyalty to the party and to the party’s supreme leader. This can be verified from the history of the CCP.

Recently, when rumors spread that a senior CCP official had fled the country, the CCP official media published an article citing the historical example of Gu Shunzhang, a CCP leader whose family was exterminated after he defected from the Party, in order to warn the Party members who had second thoughts. Such an organization that threatens to exterminate the family of a defector is not a modern political party by any stretch of the imagination, but more like a gangster organization, and a gangster organization of a triad nature. The image of Xi Jinping leading all members of the Politburo to raise their hands and vow “never to defect from the Party” is also more reminiscent of a gang initiation ceremony than a normal modern political party.

In fact, looking back at the early history of the CCP, whether it was the workers’ movement in Shanghai in the 1920s, the collusion with the Shanghai triads when they launched strikes, or the practice of incorporating bandit groups, including Wang Zuo in Jinggang Mountain, to strengthen their own ranks when they entered the rural areas to establish power, all have a strong gangster flavor. Even today, judging from the way they punish different factions within the party, they still do not shed the habits of an underworld gang organization. All this is too far from the nature of a modern political party. The Chinese Communist Party is just a large gang organization under the banner of a political party.


I have already introduced three qualities of the century-old Chinese Communist Party: the problem of violence, legitimacy, and gangsterism. Now, I will introduce the fourth and final characteristic of the CCP, which is the problem of “congenital deficiencies and acquired dysfunctions.

First, the problem of “congenital deficiency. It is undeniable that when the CCP was first founded, both Li Dazhao and Chen Duxiu, including Zhang Guotao, were a group of intellectuals with idealistic pursuits, who wanted to find a better direction for China’s development. However, this group of intellectuals, in the midst of China’s internal and external troubles at that time, developed a mentality of quick success and instant benefit, and they made the strengthening of China the most important task, the first task and the task that overwhelmed all other goals to save the country. socialist experiments, they fell back on socialist beliefs across the board. Such beliefs put collective interests above individual interests and required Party members to sacrifice everything they had to work for the Party. From the day it was founded, the CCP emphasized organizational discipline and the so-called “obedience to the overall situation,” requiring those who joined it to put party spirit above humanity. This was, of course, a reaction against the individual freedom advocated by the New Culture Movement, and from the beginning there was a problem of putting the cart before the horse in terms of how to build a democratic society. The Chinese Communist Party was founded to build a new nation, but its philosophy and approach to building a new nation were wrong from the beginning, and this is where the party was “inherently deficient.

What is an “acquired disorder”? After the establishment of the CCP, the goal was to seize power. This was a perfectly fine thing to do, but the means the CCP adopted were highly problematic. First, the CCP abandoned the path of parliamentary democracy and took the path of armed revolution. Even after the end of World War II, when China had the opportunity to establish a democratic system of two-party politics with checks and balances and competition between the Kuomintang and the Communist Party under the mediation of the United States, the CCP gave up the possibility of a peaceful path in order to establish a one-party dictatorship. Such an approach made it impossible for the CCP to follow the democratic model and only made it possible to increasingly strengthen the discipline. After the founding of the country, the CCP still could not get rid of the war mentality and emphasized the “class struggle”, which was itself a continuation of the war mentality. In fact, for decades, the CCP has been using a military mindset to govern the country, from the institutional design of the “people’s commune” to the terminology of the “industrial front”, all of which show that even after taking power, the CCP is still unable to break away from the mindset of the war years. This has led to a serious consequence. This has led to the serious consequence that the “leftist” ideology of such an organization has always been the “master of God” card. In terms of the general direction of the party, it can only become more and more leftist; mechanically speaking, there can be no internal democracy, nor can it take the initiative to make improvements. Because violence is the least complicated way, they know what they want and cannot go back to a democratic system that must be monitored. This way of governing the country has continued for decades, and this is where the party’s “acquired disorder” comes into play. Therefore, there is no room for illusions about such a ruling group, which is determined by the history of the party and is not subject to human will.

Finally, I would also like to point out that the CCP and China are certainly not the same concept and should be distinguished. However, every Chinese should reflect on the fact that the CCP has been able to influence China for a century: Why has the CCP survived to this day when all other communist regimes have collapsed? It is not enough just to condemn the CCP, but what efforts and improvements should be made by Chinese people to end the one-party dictatorship, which is an anti-modern political system, and this is what we need to think about in the centennial of the CCP.