Tuesday, August 17, 2004
I think Zhu still has more pull than his lack of public appearances would suggest. The anti-inflation drive in April, especially the way that it was carried out, has Zhu's stamp all over it. At the very least, Wen clamped down tightly on inflation only with the expectation that Zhu would support him.
The reader further points out that Wu Guangzheng, the head of the CDIC, was touring Fujian between August 13th and August 17th! Wow! What an amazing coincidence. Huang's editorial came out on the 13th.
My excited response: Your observation about Wu Guangzheng is right on spot. I think you are right that Wu's visit might have directly or indirectly prompted Huang to write the letter. If it is the former, then Huang is indeed trapped in web of elite politics.
Further thoughts: I was going to look up the RMRB for the official press release of Wu's visit. Guess what? The title of the article is there, but when I clicked on it, the article has been removed!! What's the deal. Okay, so according to unofficial sources, Wu Guangzheng is now in Fuzhou looking into things, but so is the private secretary of former Fujian party secretary Jia Qinglin (Kong Xuewen)!! What a mess!
The "anti-inflation drive" is a mis labelling. It was a cooling down of the hot sectors, steel, aluminium smelting, cement and real estate. These contribute zero to inflation.
Inflation of around 5% was driven by high grain prices, which will come crashing down when the bumper harvests come in in the next month, which will be the real driver of reduction in CPI.
Wu Guangzheng and Jia Qinglin are closely aligned and do not deviate from the Hu/Wen line; there were strong differences regarding the cooling measures, but the attacks came from outside the politbureau.