From Asia Times, a look at how the government is addressing concerns about growing social and economic inequality, and the lingering tensions over the issue:
Increasingly squeezed between the demands of the right and the criticisms of the left, the CCP is engaged in an ever more delicate juggling act, balancing the interests of the urban middle class, who have emerged as a key constituency of support, and a restive peasantry, once the party’s mainstay but progressively disaffected at being left behind by the economic boom in the cities.
China’s unique form of “socialism with Chinese characteristics” is rent with contradictions, and many of these are forcibly coming to the fore. The recently concluded annual session of China’s parliament, the National People’s Congress (NPC), usually a sedate piece of set political theater, was thus the site of some unusually feisty debate this year. [Full text]