Xi Chairs Second Meeting of Presidium of Party Congress - CMC Members Back 'Two Establishments' - 仲音 Commentary on Struggle in the New Era
Here are the stories and pieces that I found noteworthy in the Wednesday, October 19, 2022, edition of the People’s Daily.
Page 1: At the top of the page is a report on Xi Jinping and his Ugandan counterpart, Yoweri Museveni exchanging congrations on the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries. Xinhua reports:
n his congratulatory message, Xi said that with an everlasting traditional friendship, the two countries have in recent years established comprehensive cooperative partnership, steadily increasing political mutual trust and deepening cooperation in various fields. China and Uganda have firmly supported each other on issues involving their respective core interests and major concerns, and coordinated closely in global and regional affairs, he said. The Chinese president said in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, the two peoples have supported and helped each other in times of difficulty, writing a new chapter of China-Uganda friendship. Xi said he attaches great importance to China-Uganda relations, and stands ready to work with President Museveni to take the 60th anniversary as an opportunity to deepen cooperation in various fields under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative and the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, so as to bring benefits to the two countries and their people and jointly build a China-Africa community with a shared future in the new era.”
The top story on the page (English report) is a brief one telling us that Xi chaired the second meeting of the presidium of the 20th Party Congress. The report says that the meeting agreed to submit draft resolutions on:
the report of the 19th CPC Central Committee
the work report of the 19th CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection
the amendment to the Constitution of the CPC to delegations for discussion
Chen Xi discussed the list of recommended candidates for the 20th Central Committee, alternate members and members of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection. The lists will be submitted to delegations for deliberation. In addition, the meeting adopted the election methods of the Party congress.
On Monday, Xi Jinping attended a group discussion with delegates from Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. This was covered in yesterday’s edition of the paper. Today too, there is a report that reproduces some of Xi’s comments on self-revolution during that meeting. Xinhua English has a detailed report on Xi’s comments from Monday. Since I was unable to do yesterday’s edition, let me summarise those comments below.
The report says:
“Xi said that, to study and implement the spirit of the Party's 20th National Congress, we need to have a good command of the importance of the work of the past five years and the great changes in the first decade of the new era, of the worldview and methodology of the Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, and of our mission to advance the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation through a Chinese path to modernization. We should also keep firmly in mind the important requirement of using the great transformation of our own to navigate the great social transformation and the call of the times for us to strive in unity. The entire Party and all the Chinese people need to unite as ‘one piece of adamantine iron’ under the banner of the Party and stay committed to the same goal in mind and action to steer the giant ship of our great rejuvenation, braving winds and waves, toward its destination.”
Five delegates from Guangxi offered their opinions on the report to the congress. They basically all praised the boss, it seems.
“They all believe that the report to the 20th CPC National Congress, from a commanding height in considering both China's national rejuvenation and global changes of a magnitude not seen in a century, scientifically lays out goals, tasks, and major policies for developing the cause of the Party and the country in the next five years or even longer period to come, putting forward a series of new approaches, strategies and measures. It will serve as a guiding document for us to build China into a modern socialist country in all respects and realize the second centenary goal. They expressed unanimous support for the report.”
Xi then praised the work done in Guangxi and then he praised himself.
“In the past 10 years, by overcoming various hardships as if wading across treacherous waters, climbing over steep slopes and breaking through tough barriers, we have made a series of breakthroughs and milestone achievements in the cause of the Party and the country. Practices have proved that the CPC Central Committee's major principles and policies since the Party's 18th National Congress are absolutely correct, and the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics is a right way leading to sound and steady progress. It conforms to the realities of China, reflects the will of the Chinese people, and meets the requirements of the times. We must gain confidence and initiative from history, and present an ‘excellent answer sheet’ to the people and the future on the new journey ahead.”
He further added: “Xi pointed out that in order to implement the Party's innovative theories, we need to gain a good command of their worldviews and methodology as well as make good use of their stances, viewpoints, and methods. The report to the 20th CPC National Congress stressed that we should always put the people first, maintain self-confidence and stand on our own feet, and constantly uphold fundamental principles and break new ground. We should also adhere to a problem-oriented approach, apply systems thinking, and maintain a global vision. Only through conscientious study and implementation of the above six points can we obtain a deep understanding of the reason, rationale, and philosophy governing these innovative theories.”
He then talked about Chinese-style modernisation and added: “We must always pursue the development of the country and the nation by relying on ourselves, take our country's destiny of development and progress firmly in our own hands, strengthen our confidence, uphold fundamental principles and break new ground so as to write a new chapter of building China into a modern socialist country in all respects.”
He then talked about self-revolution, translated in Xinhua as self-reform. “Exercising full and rigorous self-governance is a journey to which there is no end; the Party's self-reform is a ceaseless pursuit. We must persist in carrying out self-reform of the Party so as to ensure that it will never change its nature, its conviction, or its character and that the Party is always the firm core leadership guiding the cause of Chinese socialism.”
In PD today, there’s more on these comments by Xi. He said: “I have said many times that the reason why our Party is great is not that it doesn’t make mistakes, but that it doesn’t shy away from diseases, has the courage to carry out self-revolution, and has the courage to cure the poison by scraping bones. This has enabled us to go through a century of ups and downs and emerge as an invincible and unshakable Marxist political party.” 我多次讲，我们党之所以伟大，不在于不犯错误，而在于从不讳疾忌医，勇于自我革命，勇于刮骨疗毒，所以才能穿越百年风风雨雨，成为一个打不倒、压不垮的马克思主义政党. Xi reiterated that the fight against corruption “cannot be lost and must not be lost” and called on them to face perils and storms, persevere and keep at their tasks, chipping away at them. “共产党人是唯物主义者，是无所畏惧的，怕什么？接受疾风暴雨、惊涛骇浪的考验，我说，‘虽千万人，吾往矣’！没什么好怕的。”驰而不息，锲而不舍。“必须永远吹冲锋号”郑重写入党的二十大报告.
Another article on the page also talks about Xi’s comments on combining Marxism with Chinese culture during the discussion. In these comments, Xi emphasises the need to “seek truth from facts.” It adds: “There is no end to practice, and there is no end to theoretical innovation. The general secretary pointed out concisely: ‘Socialism with Chinese characteristics will move forward, and there will be many new theories and new developments. Once solidified and rigid, it will decline. This is the profound truth we have understood’.” 实践没有止境，理论创新也没有止境。总书记言简意赅地指出：“中国特色社会主义还会往前走，还会有很多新的理论、新的发展。而一旦凝固了、僵化了，它就要衰落了。这就是我们得出的深刻道理.”
Next on the page is a long article drawing from Xi’s speech and the interpretation of the speech by delegates attending the congress. It argues that if a country wants to be at the forefront of the times, it cannot be without theoretical thinking for a moment. And then it says that “Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era is contemporary Chinese Marxism, 21st century Marxism, and the essence of the times, of Chinese culture, and the Chinese spirit.” This idea is reinforced by comments from Ouyang Song and He Yiting among others.
One delegate, Huang Yibing says that Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era is full of firm belief in Marxism, socialism and communism, and the heroic feelings that 'revolutionary ideals are higher than the sky'. The firm ideals and beliefs reflect the Marxist theoretical background of this thought and the political nature of communist party people.” “习近平新时代中国特色社会主义思想充满对马克思主义的坚定信仰，充满对社会主义、共产主义的坚定信念，充满‘革命理想高于天’的豪迈情怀。坚定的理想信念体现了这一思想的马克思主义理论底色，体现了共产党人的政治本色。”黄一兵代表认为.
Another delegate Zha Qiongfang said that Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era is a theory written in the hearts of hundreds of millions of people; the people love, approve and own this theory as their own.” “习近平总书记强调，把人民群众生命安全和身体健康放在第一位。我们从中深刻感受到，习近平新时代中国特色社会主义思想是书写在亿万人民心中的理论，是人民所喜爱、所认同、所拥有的理论.”
The final section of the article basically talks about how Xi’s thought must guide future action and to cast souls. The comments basically reiterate the policy signals and priorities that Xi’s speech talked about.
Page 2: There’s a report on the PLA and PAP delegations discussing Xi’s report. This has comments from the four members of the CMC, excluding Xi and the two vice chairs.
Wei Fenghe is quoted as saying that:
“In the past ten years, we have been able to overcome difficulties throughout the journey, go from victory to victory, make extraordinary achievements, create great miracles, and successfully embark on the path of Chinese-style modernisation; the root of this lies in the strong leadership of the Party Central Committee and Chairman Xi.” 十年来，我们能一路攻坚克难、从胜利走向胜利，取得了非凡成就，创造了伟大奇迹，成功走出一条中国式现代化道路，根本在于党中央、习主席的坚强领导.
He added: “It is necessary to deeply understand the decisive significance of the Two Establishments, strengthen the four consciousnesses and four self-confidences, and achieve the two safeguards, implement the Chairman Responsibility System of the CMC, and resolutely obey the command of the Party Central Committee, the CMC and Chairman Xi.” 要深刻领悟“两个确立”的决定性意义，增强“四个意识”、坚定“四个自信”、做到“两个维护”，贯彻军委主席负责制，坚决听从党中央、中央军委和习主席指挥.
“The road ahead is full of all kinds of difficulties, obstacles and even stormy waves. Faced with a complex and severe national security situation, we must resolutely implement the strategic plan devised by the 20th Party Congress of the Communist Party of China, thoroughly implement Xi Jinping thought on strengthening the army, improve the PLA’s ability to win, carry forward the spirit of struggle, enhance its struggle ability, maintain a high degree of vigilance, always be ready for struggle, and resolutely defend national sovereignty, security and development interests.” 前进道路上充满各种艰难险阻甚至惊涛骇浪，面对复杂严峻的国家安全形势，要坚决贯彻党的二十大作出的战略部署，深入贯彻习近平强军思想，提高人民军队打赢能力，发扬斗争精神、增强斗争本领，保持高度警惕、时刻准备打仗，坚决捍卫国家主权、安全、发展利益.
General Li Zuocheng is also full of praise for Xi. He says that “the great changes of the new era in the past decade are rooted in the Two Establishments, which are the greatest confidence and guarantee for us to cope with all risks and challenges and overcome all difficulties and obstacles.” 新时代十年的伟大变革，最根本的就在于“两个确立”，这是我们应对一切风险挑战、战胜一切艰难险阻的最大底气、最大保证.
He added: “With Chairman Xi at the helm, there will be no insurmountable slopes or hurdles that cannot be overcome, and the established goals will surely be achieved.” 有习主席掌舵领航，就没有爬不过去的坡、迈不过去的坎，就一定能够实现既定目标.
Miao Hua, who heads the CMC’s Political Work Department, says that: The miracles created and the leap achieved in the new era in the past decade are historic. In the final analysis, they are because of the core leadership and ideological guidance of Chairman Xi. 新时代十年创造的奇迹、实现的飞跃是历史性的，归根结底靠习主席核心领航、思想指引.
He then talks about the two establishments and says that “to defend this major political achievement is to defend the Party's national line and the prospect of rejuvenation.” 从百年看十年，形成“两个确立”是历史必然；从十年看新的百年，坚持“两个确立”是时代选择。捍卫这一重大政治成果，就是捍卫党运国脉和复兴前景. He also talks about using Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era to cultivate souls and educate people.
Zhang Shengmin says that “we must fully implement Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era and the spirit of the 20th Party Congress, and transform our profound understanding of the decisive significance of the Two Establishments into a high degree of self-consciousness to achieve the ‘two safeguards’ and implementing the CMC Chairman Responsibility System, maintain loyalty to the core, be determined to strive for a strong army, and ensure the achievement of the centennial goal of building the army as per schedule.” 我们要全面贯彻习近平新时代中国特色社会主义思想和党的二十大精神，把对“两个确立”决定性意义的深刻感悟转化为做到“两个维护”、贯彻军委主席负责制的高度自觉，忠诚维护核心，矢志奋斗强军，确保如期实现建军一百年奋斗目标.
Also on the page is a report informing that for the first three quarters of the year, China’s RMB loans increased by 18.08 trillion yuan, an increase of 1.36 trillion yuan year-on-year. Among this, RMB loans increased by 2.47 trillion yuan in September, an increase of 810.8 billion yuan year-on-year. As of the end of September, the balance of China’s domestic and foreign currency loans was 216.55 trillion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 10.7%; the RMB loan balance was 210.76 trillion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 11.2%, with the growth rate being 0.3 percentage points higher than that at the end of last month.
In terms of sectors, household loans increased by 3.41 trillion yuan in the first three quarters. Enterprise loans increased by 14.48 trillion yuan. Loans from non-banking financial institutions increased by 22.4 billion yuan.
Page 3: Basically, this is about foreigners, including foreign political parties, congratulating the CCP on its Congress.
Page 4: There’s the first in a new series of 仲音 commentaries. This one basically argues that “the great achievements of the new era have fully proved that socialism is achieved through hard work, and the new era is built through struggle.” 新时代的伟大成就充分证明：社会主义是干出来的，新时代是奋斗出来的.
The big message amid all the praise for the achievements of the new ear is this: “in order to comprehensively promote the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation through Chinese-style modernisation, ‘rejuvenating the country through hard work’ is the most powerful declaration given by the strugglers of the new era for the future.” 以中国式现代化全面推进中华民族伟大复兴，“实干兴邦”正是新时代奋斗者面向未来给出的最有力宣示. — Quick thought: This is important to note because it is basically emphasising for cadres and the Chinese public that there is rough air ahead and there will be turbulence; so it’s best to be prepared. This has been one of the biggest messages from Xi’s speech; amid the successes that he highlighted, there was an underlying thread warning of tough times ahead.
Finally, from pages 5 to 11, there are reports from the different delegations and comments from delegates on politics, development, environmental policy, etc. I did a cursory scan, and found nothing particularly interesting.