Will Xi Jinping have to go?

Ah, now this is a much more interesting question than David Cameron’s future! Having heard that Xi Jinping has spent most of his past three years as Cbinese president in preaching against corruption, we now know that he and two more Poliburo members are mentioned in the Panama Papers.

How much money has Mr Xi, and/or his pop-singer wife, been salting away outside China? He and his wife will not have been doing this to evade tax so much as to simply disguise from the Chinese public that they are (probably) billionaires.

To answer the question I posed in the title — probably not. He and the Chinese Communist Party apparatus will probably be able to smother the news seeping into most of the public and stop any unrest in the streets, at least in the short term. However, it’s more than likely to stir up the ambitions of at least one other member of the Chinese governmental Politburo who can make himself out to be beyond corruption..

The problem with the Politburo is that, with eight members, it is too large to be cohesive. Without the benefit of modern anthropological science, it was a bad mistake of Deng Xiaoping when he devised the present Politburo system in 1979 as a counter to the sort of disastrous dictatorship that the Chinese had been suffering from — that of Mao Zedong.

Robin Dunbar and many other anthropologists have pretty successfully demonstrated that the stable maximum size for any human group that actually trusts one another is about 120 to 150 of all ages. Above that number then any hunter-gatherer society inevitably has an internal leadership struggle or it divides.

Tbe Dunbar Number actually translates into a maximum of about four or five mature adult males at the top off the pecking order who, at any one time, loyally supports the leader. Above four or five mature males, and certainly above seven or eight, dissentions inevitably arise.

Thus this particular blog-site confidently awaits quite serious political repercussions soon as news about Xi Jinping’s personal corruption seeps around the country and particularly into the intellectual upper classes which surround and support the politicians. The repercussions won’t occur as democratic yearnings at street level — as many political commentators in the West naively expect — but as individual yearnings for political power at the very top.

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