On September 22nd, the Intermediate People’s Court in Jinan found Bo Xilai, once China’s most charismatic politician, guilty of bribery, embezzlement, and abuse of power and sentenced him to life imprisonment.
No sooner was the stiff term handed down than we began seeing assessments that the Communist Party had finally put behind it a troubled chapter in its history. Perhaps a Guardian headline said it best when it announced that “China hopes to move on after Bo Xilai life sentence.”
Yet it’s clear that Bo has not been the party’s main problem. For instance, the Financial Times, two days before the verdict and sentencing, reported that at the Party School of the Central Committee, in Beijing, talk of the failure of the country’s political system has been the hot topic of late.