Capitalist globalisation since the 1980s has produced immense benefits in terms of technical progress, poverty reduction and welfare improvement. However, it has been accompanied by profound contradictions, including ecological destruction, global warming, inequality, concentration of business power, and financial instability. Regulation of global political economy in the interests of the majority of the world’s population is essential if the human species is to avoid a Darwinian catastrophe. This book explores China’s rich history of regulating the market in the interests of the mass of the population. For over two thousand years the Chinese bureaucracy has sought pragmatically to find a Way in which to integrate the ‘invisible hand’ of market forces with the ‘visible hand’ of ethically guided government regulation. Instead of seeking confrontation with China, citizens and politicians in the West need to deepen their understanding of the contribution that China can make to globally sustainable development in the decades and centuries ahead.
Part 1: China and the West over the long-term 1. Convergence and divergence in the long-run development of China and the West 2. How China sees the West Part 2: The two-edged sword of capitalist globalization 3. The rationality of capitalism 4. The irrationality of capitalism Part 3: The Communist Party of China, parliamentary democracy and the Ancien Régime 5. The Communist Party of China and parliamentary democracy 6. The Communist Party of China and the Ancien Régime