Electronic police can provide supervision for Chinese officials
China's political history has lasted for thousands of years, during which time political corruption has never ceased haunting this country. Various mechanisms and policies have been implemented to fight corruption, be they introduced by emperors or elected leaders.
This lingering problem has also been one of the biggest concerns of the new Chinese leadership since they took office. It has certainly ascended to be one of the top priorities on their agenda. The anti-graft campaign launched by this leadership has dealt a heavy blow to the growing corruption visible in all walks of life.
This unprecedented endeavor to fight corruption requires not only top-down design, but more bottom-up mechanisms to increase their efficiency. In my opinion, these efforts should focus on one issue, which is the installation of a third-party investigative system, such as electronic police, to ensure the justness and completeness of law enforcement.
The solution to many minor social problems such as jaywalking and bad driving habits does not lie in a rearrangement of the whole system. If we observe these issues from the general perspective of society, history, culture, tradition and ethics, we will only be led to a conclusion that they are deep-rooted and difficult to address.
But if an intelligent e-policing system can be introduced at a nationwide level, most of these petty and disturbing activities will be recorded and dealt with with the minimum involvement of external forces. This system will be much more useful than slogans printed on walls across the country.
The key advantage of e-policing does not only rest on its capacity to guarantee the maximum justness of law enforcement, but also boasts the inevitability that almost all violations of law will cause punishment.
The same system can also be introduced to fight corruption. To some extent, corruption has nothing to do with morality and ethics, national culture or history. It is only related to the national system.
In ancient China when the Chinese empire persistently suffered from rampant corruption, the emperors could only punish or even execute major corrupt officials as examples to the others. However, with so many officials and so few supervisors, whose job was usually done by the emperor, it was impossible to make anti-corruption efforts productive.
This ongoing anti-graft campaign should pay more attention to strong mobilization of the masses, who play the role of e-policing. This is a landmark sign of progress, flinging the doors wide open to the general public, whose initiative to exercise their rights of supervision has been greatly raised. The large number of ordinary people can ensure there is a complete coverage and that no government officials will be excluded. As "e-police officers," the masses are unlikely to become accomplices of corrupt government officials. Besides, the participation of the public does not impose more costs on the government, and more significantly, it will help the public nourish their consciousness of civil society and democracy.