The argument is that the world community is naive and unaware of Chinese corruption and lack of meritocracy. But it is the writer of the article who is naive by implying that China is somehow especially non-meritocratic. Reality tells us that there's one more myth to be busted, if we are at this topic. The myth of Western meritocracy or indeed of meritocracy of any kind. Decades of world-wide neoliberalism has lead to a complete erosion of moral standards and integrity in the whole world. Does the case of Japan really differ from that of China? Does South Koreea really excel in integrity and merit when we hear all the corrupt deals that are happening there? How about Britain, where we can see Murdoch's monumental influence in politics and business?
The argument for Bo's inefficiency are hilarious. If Mr Minxin Pei believes that those are failures, I would like to invite him to take a look at Europe and their incentive-based meritocratic political system. Also take a deep look at the private sector and its meritocratical values, also its spending&borrowing patterns, and then the bailout successes. And the political lobbying. The media in britain, italy and pretty much all europe, the financial sector in britain, iceland, greece.. you name it. Are these countries beams of meritocracy and integrity to compare them with shady China?
The educational system in China abounds of corruption and apparatchiks. No degree of comparison between this and Europe, where the academia has been left at the expense of the private sector. In these advanced western neoliberal societies academics win an extra buck by supporting neoliberal theories of blissful deregulation, being on the payroll of huge corporations (financial, military corporations, Stratfor) and by having an impeccable conduct when assessing students. Especially in Britain, where the children of the aristocracy - ancient and modern alike - reach all of them at the best of the best universities. Their performance is magnificent and at no way to be equaled by commoners, who have way less chances of ever being admitted to Cambridge, Oxford, LSE, St Andrews than pure-blooded Bullingdon club destined younglings.
The reality is hidden in what is not discussed in this article. The ideological orientation of Bo Xilai as a hard-line leftist with a strong powerbase is especially interesting. In other words, the Communist Party of China ousted a big chunk of its left wing in an affair that also involves British intelligence. It also launched a huge media campaign in online and print to control the information flow and to assess the feedback of the news. But we'll call it a "valauable function in cleansing governments". It is somehow moral, since its some bad chinese communists involved, to consider "cleansing individuals of dubious character" a positive act, rather than one that should be analysed to see if that's all it is.
The use of Chinese terms for corruption and office buying has a magical force. I have seen it in relations to many countries in the Balkans for example. But corruption is a very bad concept, it almost magically incorporates all a societies' illnesses and unites them in one symbol.