Recognizing that values are highly subjective, I have found that certain lessons resonate across U.S.-China-Taiwan relations:
Chinese and Americans want their legal rights protected by government, not trampled upon or ignored by officials. There is a sense that, if an injustice is done to one person, it is done to all.
Government performance today is closely tied to support from the people. In modern society, there must be a strong public-private partnership based on mutual trust and common goals to achieve national standards of excellence.
China has a rich tradition of political theory. There is no reason a path forward for Chinese politics can't be found wherein the country is stable, citizens support the government, and leaders serve the interests of all the people.
It is vital that Americans and Chinese consider not only their materialistic well-being but also their spiritual well-being. If the spiritual side is ignored, then selfishness will take hold of the personality and all kinds of missteps will occur.
Westerners and Chinese alike share a common desire to discover and express their very best qualities. A sense of personal fulfillment cannot be attained by wealth, prestige, power, or any other outward criteria. All governments should understand and work with the human motivation to excel. If government is able to do this, then the people will strive to improve their conditions, and the country and society will almost certainly prosper.
July 24, 2012