Below are my short reflections on Xi Jinping & The Rules of Eight Points as they where published in China Daily the 10th of December 2012. It will be very interesting to see how these points will be implemented. I should also add that number 6 in the link is not correct translated. First, the party is meant to reduce meaningless media exposure and the second, the Party can only decide their exposures in the state media, not all the media. The Rules of Eight Points are a refreshingly honest response to the challenges of credibility facing most governments around the world. These indicate a genuine will to ensure that the leadership is leading toward the future and not living in the past. Ensuring a humble political leadership is something that is much needed all around the world as the distance between people and the political leaders has been growing for many years. If China could help inspire a trend to close the gap it would be very valuable. Moving forward, these eight points could be supported by two developments.
First, measurable targets and official reporting. In an age of rumors and social media it is important to have clear goals so that it is clear what kind of progress is taking place. Measurable goals also make it easier to evaluate policies on a regular basis, e.g. once every year. Clear targets also make it easier to deal with a mistake, because the important thing is overall development, not a single mistake.
Second, the eight goals are currently formulated to reduce the negatives. The focus is on bad things that should be reduced. It is a good first step, but such an initiative would also benefit from clear, positive goals, that also should be possible to measure. Some ideas for such targets: A 25 percent increase in meetings with the grassroots; provide a list of the top 800 most-urgent practical problems that people have mentioned; ensure that 50 percent of official documents are freely available in digital formats (and with the opportunity for people to comment on them); introduce transparency regarding visits and meetings between members of the Political Bureau and other stakeholders, including a list of all those who have met Politburo members more than four times.