【Author’s brief introduction】Chen Jian, Vice President of the 6-7th China Economic System Reform Research Association, member of the 50-person talk of China’s private economy, and founding president of the Beijing Reform and Development Research Association. Long-term commitment to economic reform research. Editor-in-chief of “China Reform Report” from 2011 to 2015, published hundreds of articles on reform.
What is a third party, usually refers to an object outside the two interrelated subjects, called a third party. The third party can be related to the two subjects, or it can be an object independent of the two subjects. The third party can also be regarded as a relatively objective institution that can be trusted by the public. It is an organization that has no interests involved, is not disturbed by external factors, and can uphold objectivity and justice.
1. Society needs a third party
In the current real life of China, including economic and political life, especially the occurrence of major public opinions, there is an urgent need for a third party to come forward.
——The launch of major government projects may indeed have positive significance for the long-term development of the local area. However, the masses questioned the government’s statement. The government did not deal with the negative impact on the local area brought about by the launch of major engineering projects, and the masses did not accept it. How to convince the public that the launch of major engineering projects will benefit local economic and social development in the long run or in the near future, and requires the participation of a third party recognized by the society.
——Cities hold large-scale games (including the Provincial Games, the National Games, the Asian Games, and the Olympic Games). Citizens think that the games are labor-intensive and costly, but the evaluation report given by the government shows that the games are very beneficial and not only solve the employment of many people , but also boosted economic growth with limited government investment. When citizens doubt the government’s conclusions, a convincing third party is needed, and think tanks can provide objective and fair assessment reports.
——The evaluation of the Spring Festival Gala announced by CCTV every year, CCTV’s own evaluation is very high. For example, in the 2022 CCTV Spring Festival Gala, CCTV gave a rating of 21.93%, 360 million people watched it, and said it set a new record and received rave reviews. But some viewers questioned this, thinking that the CCTV Spring Festival Gala was not so exciting. If there is an objective third party to come forward, the credibility will be higher and the effect will be better.
——The financial situation of the listed company, the feedback to the shareholders is that the company’s financial situation is good, the income and expenditure are stable, and the profit continues to grow. But shareholders are skeptical. Because many listed companies with good report performance, it didn’t take long for their poor performance to disappoint shareholders and even delist. Because of this, some listed companies with good financial status and stable performance often worry about how to find a financial company that investors can trust. Some invite foreign financial companies at great expense to convince investors.
– Major public opinion incidents urgently need an objective and impartial third party to respond. After some major public opinion incidents occur, the government can act as an influential, objective and impartial third party to respond to social concerns and solve problems in the first place. However, if the government fails to respond to social doubts, and instead hides, it will not only affect the credibility of the government, but also be detrimental to social stability. For example, the incident in County F of J Province, which attracted the attention of netizens across the country during the Lunar New Year, the government kept issuing announcements, but because it did not respond to the public’s questions, although the level of government continued to rise, first to counties, then prefectures, and then to the province, the key issues were not responded to, and the society questioned Continuously, the credibility of the government is damaged. It should be noted that the credibility of the damage here is not only the local government, but the credibility of Chinese governments at all levels. When a major public opinion incident occurs, how to find a suitable third party is of great significance to quell the incident.
——China’s strong rise on the international stage also has the problem of finding a third party. For example, there is no doubt that the Communist Party of China has taken root in China and has received the wholehearted support of the people of the whole country. CCTV said that the support of the Chinese government is much higher than that of the American people. This needs to be supported by third-party data. However, citing an international third party has both authority and credibility in the international community. Which media is more suitable is also an issue that needs to be discussed.
——In the international community, some frictions that often occur between countries also expect a suitable third party to appear, who can give an objective and fair evaluation. Russia and Ukraine have been at odds in recent days over the bombing deaths of 53 Ukrainian prisoners of war in Olenivka, Donetsk. The Russian accusations were made by Ukraine. The Ukrainian military has completely denied the allegations that Russia bombed the prison. What the truth is, there needs to be an objective and impartial third party and evidence to support it. The latest report is that on July 31, the International Red Cross announced on Twitter: “To be clear, our request yesterday to access prisoners of war at the Olenivka Detention Facility was not granted. In accordance with the Geneva Conventions , it is the obligation of all parties to the conflict to allow the ICRC to access prisoners of war.” On July 30, the Russian DOD announced that at the request of Ukraine, it had “formally invited” experts from the United Nations and the ICRC to Olenivka. An investigation into the detention facility where the Ukrainian prisoners of war died.
2. Find a third party
Where is the third party? This is a question that is both simple and complex. From a national perspective, there may be no third party in China at all. East, West, North, South, China, the Party, government, military and civilian studies, and the Party leads everything. In China, there is only the party and the people, and the interests of the party and the people are highly consistent. It can even be said that since the party has no special interests of its own, the interests of the party are also the interests of the people. If so, there seems to be no soil for a third party to exist. But from the tortuous analysis of the affairs themselves, it can be said that there are third parties everywhere in China. The Fourth Plenary Session of the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China proposed to improve the party’s leadership system that takes the overall situation and coordinates all parties. The party’s interests are highly consistent with the people’s interests, which does not mean that specific to an industry, an institution, individual citizens, the interests of the party can be fully represented, and the interests of the party can be equal to the interests of institutions and individual citizens. According to the merits of the matter itself, the position and policy grasp are determined, and there is obviously a solid soil for the existence of a third party. As long as they can uphold objectivity and fairness, such as financial companies, media, think tanks, etc., they can give people trust and be welcomed by people.
(1) Third parties in real life
In real life, the introduction of suitable third parties has become a common phenomenon in daily life. For example, it has become a judicial practice for high-ranking officials to be tried in different places for corruption. For example, Bo Xilai, the former secretary of the Chongqing Municipal Party Committee, was tried in Jinan. Judicial practice in recent years shows that corruption of senior officials at the provincial and ministerial levels is mostly tried across provinces and different places, and corruption cases at the department and bureau level are mostly heard at different places within the province. It has become a judicial practice to hear high-ranking officials’ crime cases in different places. Off-site trials can prevent officials from using their powers in the region where they serve to influence the investigation and trial of cases, and hinder the independence and impartiality of trials.
Similarly, for some major cases, the public security handled cases in different places. For example, the case of picking quarrels, provoking trouble and violent beating of others in a barbecue restaurant in Lubei District, Tangshan City in June this year has attracted nationwide attention and has also had some impact on the international community. And this Guangyang branch can be regarded as a third party in a certain sense.
For some of the above practices, the degree of objectivity and fairness is improved by handling cases in different places. It may be doubtful whether the institution handling the case is a trustworthy third party. But there is no doubt that overall objectivity is obviously higher than handling cases locally.
(2) Improve the level of governance
To improve governance capacity and governance modernization level, if there is no basic understanding of the regular phenomena existing in human society, the improvement of governance level can only be largely empty talk. The media, for example, is most likely to be the third party trusted by all parties. But this has strict requirements on the media: that is, from an objective and neutral perspective, use reports that conform to the professional norms of journalism, and use facts and truth to clarify false rumors and distinguish right from wrong. If the role of media public opinion supervision is lost, there is only praise and praise, and the media cannot act as a credible “third party”, which will lead to the emergence of the Tacitus trap phenomenon. When public power loses its credibility, no matter how it speaks or does anything, society will give it a negative evaluation and will not believe its statement. Public opinion supervision is an important reason for the existence of the media. Without the supervision of public opinion, what is the value and significance of the existence of the media? If the media cannot uphold objectivity and impartiality, lack the credibility accumulated by public opinion supervision, and cannot decide its own position based on the merits of the matter itself, it will be difficult for people to trust the media reports when they encounter major events. Also lost the third party qualification.
Accounting firms, law firms, think tanks, etc., these organizations that may become third parties have their own responsibilities and requirements, and they all need to decide their own positions and behaviors according to the merits of the matter itself, but if you turn a blind eye to the truth, do not It is difficult to act as a third party if we can proceed from facts, but from principles.
Reform is standard. Reform is to change what was originally bad into something good, not the other way around. Reform should be conducive to improving human freedom, promoting social democracy, improving the level of institutional civilization, and releasing the vitality of the market, society and ideology. Specifically, the reform should be conducive to the development of productive forces, to reduce the labor time of laborers, and to dedicate more time to the free and comprehensive development of human beings.
How to reform is conducive to creating a soil suitable for the existence of third parties, at least some of the following:
First, appropriate decentralization and rational division of labor. Democracy emphasizes multiple masters and checks and balances. In particular, political checks and balances are critical. Marx’s classic language: “Of course, the weapon of criticism cannot replace the criticism of weapons, and material power can only be destroyed by material power.” , which can be regarded as the basis for the theory of political checks and balances. The division of labor and power is an important form of political checks and balances. In the sense of polity, division of labor is the relative division of various state functions (not limited to legislation, administration, and judiciary) in terms of organization, personnel, and responsibilities, and does not exclude state organs from overlapping, participating, and cooperating with each other in some functions. . Separation of powers is the division of power between the legislative, executive and judicial powers in terms of organization and responsibilities. The party leads everything, it doesn’t mean that the party does everything. For example, the Party’s leadership over court work does not mean that the Party is directly involved in the handling of specific cases. Article 126 of the Constitution of the People’s Republic of China stipulates: “The people’s courts exercise judicial power independently in accordance with the provisions of the law, and are not subject to interference from administrative organs, social groups and individuals.” This is a constitutional confirmation that our courts exercise judicial power independently in accordance with the law. The people’s courts exercise judicial power independently in accordance with the law. The basic meaning is that the people’s courts, as judicial organs, are independent in accordance with the law and are not subject to other powers; the internal levels of the people’s courts are independent in accordance with the law. The administrative management should not interfere with the specific judicial organization. Let the judges judge, and the judges are responsible. Under such circumstances, the courts independently exercise judicial power in accordance with the law, which means upholding the Party’s leadership and safeguarding the Party’s authority. The more a judge obeys the law, is unselfish, and enforces the law impartially, the more it reflects the party’s purpose and fundamentally adheres to the party’s leadership. Therefore, respecting the independent exercise of judicial power by the people’s courts in accordance with the law enhances the legalization and standardization of the party’s leadership.
The second is to improve the level of institutional civilization. This requires accelerating the transformation of government functions. The government cannot be both a referee and an athlete, or even compete with the people for profits, which will inevitably seriously damage the government’s credibility. To improve the construction of institutional civilization, it is necessary to improve the institutional design, properly handle the relationship between the government and the market, and the government and society, and create an institutional civilization system that “respects the market, society, and locality”. Only in this way, respect will not be empty words, but a kind of “social existence” that reflects this respect through a strong institutional civilization.
The third is to increase the supervision of public power. The lack of a third party is rooted in the capriciousness of power, unrestricted or limited. Therefore, how to make the power run in the orbit of the rule of law is the key to the existence of the third party. Taking media supervision as an example, media supervision is a form of supervising public power. This is not only the basic right of the media, but also an important means to promote the level of government work and improve government efficiency. We still lack a deep understanding of the notion that media supervision is conducive to enhancing the party’s ruling status and that it is conducive to putting people-centered thinking in place. Because of this, the media’s role in supervising the government is still in place and irregular, and the role it should play has not been fully demonstrated. So far, the media’s public opinion supervision has not yet formed a ethos. The media can only praise their duties, and the proportion of critical reports is very small or even eliminated. In addition, the problem of executive power interference is serious. The media is faced with the difficulties of interviewing, collecting evidence, and obtaining support from relevant departments, which has affected the normal conduct of media public opinion supervision. The dilemma faced by media supervision is that, due to the lack of strong legal protection, so far there has not been a special law to protect the rights of the news media. Whether it is reasonable or not can not be guaranteed; the supervision rights of journalists are not properly maintained, and even their personal safety is threatened, which makes a considerable number of media reporters stay away from public opinion supervision, which leads to the withering of public opinion supervision and rational responsibility. If the reports of the public can’t keep up, the third party that the public relies on will lose the soil of existence!
The international community is looking for a third party, and it is important to do its own thing well. Only by appearing on the international stage as a responsible major country, and by truly deciding on its own position and formulating policies according to the merits of the matter, can it win respect and understanding in the international community and show China’s good international image.
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