Caixin OnlineOpinionEditorial The Family and Corruption
05.02.2012 15:05

The Family and Corruption

The party must address problems resulting from inherited power before China can effectively curb graft

The privileged children of Chinese officials have been making the news. Whenever a scandal breaks, the internet bursts with enraged comments about the excesses of guan er dai, a shorthand term for the second generation of officials.

It's time for the government to deal with the problem of inherited privilege.

For thousands of years, Chinese society was ruled by absolute power: "He who owns the land is the ruler; whoever lives thereon is his subjects," goes a saying in classical literature. German sociologist Max Weber calls this an example of a bureaucratic patrimonial state.

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