Will Chinese Workers Challenge Global Capitalism?

Paul Jay, senior Editor for The Real News Network in Washington examines the plight of the worker in China.

In China in June, leaders of the Chinese Communist Party said that it’s time for workers’ wages to go up. And there’s been a lot of discussion about whether China’s actually restructuring its economy to try to boost domestic demand. Certainly what leaders say, in other parts of the world, they want, and the G-20 declaration, and in various statements by President Obama, there’s been a lot of pressure on China to try to increase demand not just for Chinese products, but for China to increase its imports of products from around the world. Now joining us to talk about a wave of worker strikes in China—because it seems the workers want higher wages, I think, whether or not anyone else is saying they should—is Minqi Li. He joins us from Utah, where he teaches at the university there. Minqi was a political prisoner in China from 1990 to 1992. And he taught at York University in Canada for a few years. He’s—as I say, he’s now at the University of Utah. His most recent book, The Rise of China and the Demise of the Capitalist World-Economy was published in 2009.

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