Wei Jingsheng Foundation News and Article Release Issue: A587-W355

魏京生基金会新闻与文章发布号: A587-W355


Release Date: November 21, 2010



Topic: The Way Out for China (Part XXVIII): The Inspiration We Received from the Rescued Chilean Mine Workers -- by Wei Jingsheng

标题: 《中国的出路》之二十八:智利矿难工人获救给我们的启迪 -- 魏京生


Original Language Version: Chinese (Chinese version at the end)



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The Way Out for China (Part XXVIII): The Inspiration We Received from the Rescued Chilean Mine Workers

-- Wei Jingsheng



We have talked about the way out for China being a model combining an economic development strategy of "sharing the wealth with the people" with a democratic politics.  Democracy is not an empty slogan, but a real protection for people's rights and interests.  Democracy is not just a protection of the economic development, but also the protection of the welfare and security of the people in their lives and during their work.  In the past, we often compared ourselves with the developed countries.  But many others did not agree and argued that the developed countries have the money.  These people thought that, if we developed according to the Communist government's policy of "everything is about making money", one day we would be able to accomplish the same.


My view is different than theirs.  I do not think the difference is an issue of money or not, but the attitude towards the people.  In the minds of these bureaucratic capitalists who believe in "everything is about making money", human beings are just elements and tools of production.  This opinion is also what Karl Marx described.  The capitalists only care about how much wages are to be paid and the efficiency of work.  Social welfare and workers' conditions are not what the capitalists care about.  They often say that they are capitalists, not philanthropists.


So should the workers in the factory be a simple production tool?  Of course not.  But how are we to force the capitalists to consider workers as human beings just like themselves and care about their welfare and conditions?  Various measures from Westerners' workers movements and governmental intervention have indeed made the capitalists pay attention to social impact and their own image in the society.  Therefore, they also had to pay attention to the rights and interests of workers.  This attention leads to the policy of "sharing the wealth with the people" being consciously implemented in action.  Moreover, these capitalists also are proud of their concern and care for their employees.


Recently, a news item has not only received praises from the world, but also resulted in exclaim in most of the Chinese news media.  The news was about the Copiapó mining accident in Chile.  After 69 days, all 33 miners were rescued.  The last one, Luis Urzúa, was the shift foreman on the day of the collapse and the group leader during the confinement.  In China, when a mining disaster happens, not only can we not expect the leaders to place themselves in the most dangerous position, but also we cannot expect the possibility of so much effort for the rescue.  There are even reports in China that some mine owners would block the vents to let the miners die, in an effort to avoid more expensive payments afterward.


This is the natural cruelty of the capitalists.  It reflects the inhuman side of them.  In an effort to save the souls of the capitalists, and even more so make them consciously hold their human nature to take care of their workers as their brothers, we must use social pressure and governmental intervention.  Under the pressure of a governmental system, under the pressure of the public opinion of the society, the capitalists will gradually become accustomed to consider issues from the perspective of people, not just from the perspective of the capital.  The capitalists in Chile, a country without too much money, yet a democratic developing country, have become accustomed to care.  It is such a great difference from the capitalists in China, a country known as "a country of etiquette".


What do the capitalists in the democratic countries think of first when they are faced with a catastrophic accident?  They would say the same as what the Chinese bureaucrats and capitalists say when they face the television cameras: workers' safety is the most important, etc.  But the Chilean capitalists are saying the truth.  They know that they have much to lose, and also know how to minimize the losses.  However, the losses in their concern include both the creditability of their enterprises and punishment by the government, as well as their own faces as humans.  Money is not the most important factor for their concern anymore.  The psychological characteristics of these capitalists as a human have been transformed by the democratic system.


The boundary line drawn by the government and society for the capitalists is: usually you are a normal capitalist, moneymaking is your main consideration.  You can maximize the function of your moneymaking business.  This maximization is beneficial to the society.  However, on the issues of worker safety, welfare, and sharing of business success, you must be a human.  You have to be like the others in the society, with compassion, reason, and fairness in treating the others.  Deal with these issues well is your own work, otherwise it will be hard for you to be normal and receive respect from others.  Money is not the main reason for respect; the main reason for you to get respect is that you know how to be a good person.


So what is the situation in China?  It is quite a contrary.  The Chinese Communist government took the lead in treating our people like pigs and dogs.  Chinese capitalists certainly followed suit well.  They do not need to treat the Chinese workers as human beings.  Thus, the workers lost their characteristics as human, and receded into mere elements of production.  The Chinese government is only concerned about GDP.  So as far as you create enough GDP for it, you made enough money, you will receive incentives and protection from the Chinese government.  That is because you created tax revenue for the government and created achievements for the officials to get promoted and rich.  If there are other issues from the people, the Chinese government will help you to resolve them, by force if necessary.


The Chinese communist government is a government of bureaucrat capitalism.  It will not force the capitalists to be human; instead it will punish the well behaved.  The public opinion of the society has also fallen to "nothing but money".  This opinion is the intended public opinion of this authoritarian government.  It is the intended policy to turn humans into ghosts.  It is the intended strategy to make the whole society fall morally.  If you do not agree and do not want to surrender yourself to that, there is the dictatorial machine waiting to suppress you.  Even the capitalists and politicians of the West have also joined arms in browning their noses from the Chinese Communist capitalists.  These capitalists and politicians of the West want this opportunity to make a lot of money.  In their hearts, the pure side of capitalists is seduced by this authoritarian government.  Although these capitalists and politicians of the West cannot change the democratic system of the West, they are trying hard to protect the dictatorial government in China.


China's authoritarian system has not only hampered China's economic development, but also damaged the Chinese people's life and security, including the environment, culture, science and technology.  If we want to see a way out for China, we must to prevent it from further damage.  Some advocates want to have a "positive engagement" with this authoritarian regime, waiting for the big wigs of money and power to return the interests and rights back to the people.  I say this is as unrealistic as to negotiate with tigers for their skins.


Only when there is a democratic system like the West, then can there be large enough pressure to force the governmental officials and capitalists to yield to the society, to force them to be good humans.  Only a social system of democracy could guarantee people's rights to correct these capitalists' human nature.  Even under a democratic system, the rights and interests of protecting the people could only be realized by continuously applying pressure.  Only with pressure will the capitalists divide some of their nature to be restored back to humanity.


The essential components of democratic societies are the different pressure groups.  The biggest pressure group is the voting public.  The vote is the root cause for the government to stand on the side of the people, while refusing the corruption of the money.  Without this factor, the possibility of the officials refusing the corruption of the money is largely reduced, and it is almost for sure then the government will become the government of the capitalists.  This is why democracy is not an empty slogan, but it is the underlying reason closely related to people's happiness.



To hear Mr. Wei Jingsheng's commentary, please visit:



(Written and recorded on October 15, 2010.  Broadcasted by Radio Free Asia.)



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Wei Jingsheng Foundation News and Article Release Issue: A587-W355

魏京生基金会新闻与文章发布号: A587-W355


Release Date: November 21, 2010



Topic: The Way Out for China (Part XXVIII): The Inspiration We Received from the Rescued Chilean Mine Workers -- by Wei Jingsheng

标题: 《中国的出路》之二十八:智利矿难工人获救给我们的启迪 -- 魏京生


Original Language Version: Chinese (Chinese version at the end)









-- 魏京生






































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