Thursday, October 08, 2009

Contemporary China in 60 years (1985 - 1989)

(1949 - 1954), (1955 - 1959), (1960 - 1964), (1965 - 1969), (1970 - 1974), (1975 - 1979), (1980 - 1984)

1985: JinJiang Counterfeit Pharmaceuticals Case (晋江假药案)

Jinjiang City in recent years. In 1985, there was a notorious counterfeit pharmaceuticals case that was related to many of the private-owned pharmaceutical businesses in Jinjiang.

Since then, counterfeit was related to the product made by the private-owned Chinese companies. Until now, made in China is still more or less doubted by the rest of the world about its real quality and genuine inside. Moreover, JinJiang Counterfeit Pharmaceuticals Case was a typical example on how quick and how much brutal general morality could lose when capitalism and Atheism were perfectly integrated. This problem became one of the main concern in China until now.

1986: Shenyang Explosion-proof Equipment Factory bankrupt (沈阳防爆器械厂宣告破产)

August 25, 1986, the former director of the factory Shi Yongjie (石永阶) watched workers to receive benefits card. Shenyang Explosion-proof Equipment Factory was a collectively owned business and it was the first business that was declared bankrupt in New China.

Since then, thousands of nation-owned or collectively owned businesses were declared bankrupt and bought by the private owners. It thus started the process of transferring the nation-owned property (before it nearly all the productive property was owned by the nation) into the hand of private parties. Fundamentally, the capitalist economy became part of the Chinese economy.

1987: The First Land Auction in New China (国有土地使用权首次拍卖)

The winner of the auction.

There is a question: if land can be owned by private, may the society still be socialist? Hence in China, what had auctioned was the right of use to the land in contrast to ownership of the land. And it is still the same until today. Legally, the ownership of all land in China still belongs to the nation. This is a typical "with Chinese characteristics" economic reform.

1988: First Inflation in New China (通货膨胀)

People were fighting to buy gold product in front of a small shop because of the money inflation. This was the first inflation since 1949 after the found of People's Republic of China.

Inevitably, the rise of free economy caused the first-ever inflation in the history of New China. For most of Chinese at the meantime, this was the first time they started to think of "investment". Chinese people began to stand out of their old lives and looked forward to a new style of lives that would be more challenging but also having more opportunity to gain. Fulfilled by this type of excitement and nervousness, China stepped into 1989, another year of transition in the history of contemporary China.

1989: Tiananmen Square Protests (天安门广场学生民主示威运动)

"The Goddess of Democracy" carved by students from the Central Academy of Fine Arts and erected in the Square during the protest.

Tiananmen Square Protests in 1989 was the most important single event in contemporary China since 1976, the end of Great Culture Revolution.

(1) It terminated China's attempt to become a normal capitalist nation since the economic reform. Before 1989, China was one of the most likely communist nations that might be transformed into capitalism in a peaceful process. The 1989 event ended everything.

(2) Since then, China became a pure materialist nation since nearly all the idealist political leaders were either arrested or exiled. The young generation in China after 1989 became fairly different from their elder brothers and sisters. China really could have been a totally another nation if the end of the protest were different.

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