Tag: farmer

China’s Hukou System Supresses Farmers

Chinese farmer with a traditional hoe. Notice he is not fat.

Chinese farmer with a traditional hoe. Notice he is not fat.

There are some government social systems that affect society so profoundly that without it we would be much worse off. In Canada, I would recommend our universal healthcare system. China’s hukou system is the mirror opposite, a tool to suppress and control the movements of China’s rural population.

Will China’s Farmers Buy Computers? Not.

A recently announced Chinese subsidy program targeting farmers has expanded it’s range of eligible items from the traditional home appliances to computers. This is an effort to spur domestic consumption. While on first reflection this seems like a good plan, note that farmers have a very low income. They have not benefited from China’s once booming economy as much as China’s urban middle class. Family members who have ventured to China’s big cities to become migrant workers are now facing grave difficulties finding employment. Many are forced to return home, causing great concern from the Chinese government. Further, conditions at the village level will not allow computer technology and knowledge to flourish. In these conditions I do not think many will be splurging on a new computer purchase.