One Last Step: Xi Jinping Stands at the Precipice of Lifelong Rule

If that goes into effect, Xi Jinping, now 64, will be free to stay on as China's head of state indefinitely. These and other state-run outlets, such as the, have argued that the amendment corresponds to a "new era" in which the country is implementing ',' whose is to make China "a great modern socialist country" by the mid-21st century. The assumption was that the issue would not be raised at the "two sessions".

If one goes by the editorials and op-eds in several publications, Xi's consolidation of power has been met with caution as well as fear of a possible "Chinese hegemony". China Digital Times has a longer list on its website.

The chairman is Zhang Dejiang, a former vice-premier and the third-most senior person in the party after President Xi and Premier Li. Control of the state, which grants him the title of president, is arguably the least important of the three. Beijing's latest move to remove presidential term limits on Xi has just confirmed these speculations. This has been made clear with his parties intention of removing the "2 term" Presidency rule. Though he originally came across as a transitional candidate with little vision, he has proven to be a strategically-thinking power politician in the party.

"Inevitably, Sunday's announcement has further alarmed the country's intellectuals who are already anxious about the massive propaganda campaign that has been building a personality cult around Xi over the past few years", he wrote in an article in the Morning Post today.

Party controlled media in China have rejected suggestions that the proposed amendments mean Xi is aiming to become China's next emperor or its leader for life. Some Chinese have been doing so by posting images of Winnie the Pooh.

By itself, the end of this term limit is relatively unimportant. The overconcentration of power and lack of supervision in a "leader for life" system often invites abuse. There are no term limits on that post. A system of "leader for life" or hereditary power succession has no such safeguards.

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China has been focused on tackling mounting debt, housing risks and industrial overcapacity, and some analysts have said it should concentrate instead on what many see as excessive state intervention in the economy. Where we all remember the crimes of Tiananmen Square, and will ultimately hold all those responsible for the slaughter of tends of thousands of students then, and hundreds of thousands since to account for their crimes against the chinese people! Although the first does not always lead to the second, no democracy or constitutional rule can be established without some kind of term limits.

Besides the two-term rule, top Chinese leaders also followed a convention of retiring after 68 years. It would be a shame if they were to be overturned overnight. Baidu, China's version of Google, showed that there was a spike in searches for the term "emigration".

For Qianlong to outshine his grandfather would have been viewed as immodest, reflecting poorly on the House of Aisin Goro, as well as on the throne itself; his abdication helped to preserve public respect for the imperial office.

While the number of people who can actually migrate is small, they are the backbone of the country. He has dispatched Chinese naval vessels into disputed territories in the East China Sea, prosecuted border disputes with Japan and India, bullied Taiwan and South Korea, and built artificial islands in the South China Sea meant to become military bases.

Deng Yuwen is a researcher at the Charhar Institute think tank.

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