Opinions concerning Strengthening and Improving Propaganda and Ideology Work, and Even Better Serving Economic Construction and Reform
(Passed by the CCP Central Committee Politburo Meeting of 3 September 1992)
Since the talks of Comrade Deng Xiaoping on his Southern Tour, our country’s reform and opening up, and economic construction has entered a new phase. The broad cadres on the propaganda and ideological front have earnestly studied the important talks of Comrade Deng Xiaoping, linked up with reality and done their work diligently. The Politburo of the Central Committee believes that, at present, the main task that propaganda and ideology front faces is that it must earnestly study and deeply implement the spirit of Comrade Deng Xiaoping’s important talks and the plenary meeting of the Central Committee Politburo, liberate thoughts, unify understanding, inspire spirits, completely propagate the basic line of “one centre, two basic points”, and even better serves economic construction, reform and opening up.
I, Continue to deeply study the important talks of Comrade Deng Xiaoping, use the theory and practice of constructing Socialism with Chinese characteristics to unify the thoughts of the entire Party.
Comrade Deng Xiaoping’s construction of the theory and practice of Socialism with Chinese characteristics is a correct summary of the experience on both positive and negative sides of the international Communist movement and especially the last decades of Socialist construction in our country, it is the application and development of Marxism-Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought under new historical conditions, and is the crystallization of the magnificent achievements of the Chinese people creating history and the collective wisdom of the entire Party. The important talks of Comrade Deng Xiaoping on his Southern Tour, answered many major issues in our country’s present construction and reform, they had both deep theoretical significance, and a clear practical focus. Practice demonstrates that this theory and practice has opened the only correct path for our country’s Socialist modernization construction. Only by abiding by this theory and practice will we be able to unify thoughts, strengthen confidence, overcome difficulties and advance victoriously.
Studying and implementing the important talks of Comrade Deng Xiaoping, theory must be linked with practice, the most important is that it is necessary to liberate thoughts, seek truth from facts, accelerate the pace of reform and opening-up, concentrate forces to enhance the economy. At present, study must be integrated with organizing the implementation of a series of policy measures of the CCP Central Committee and the State Council concerning deepening reform and broadening openness, use the spirit of the talks to guide all work matters in construction and reform.
Through studying the important talks of Comrade Deng Xiaoping, deeply understand the correctness of the judgment that “we must guard against the right, but must mainly be on guard against the ‘Left'”. Understand that the right may ruin Socialism from theoretical roots, ideological roots and historical roots, and that the “Left” may also ruin Socialism, the “Left” is deep-rooted, correct the thought that the “Left” is better than the right, fundamentally overcome the influence of the “Left”. It is necessary to prevent dogmatic understanding of some principles of Marxism, or some books, and correct unscientific and even completely distorted understandings of Socialism, become liberated from these incorrect ideological concepts and policies that exceed the primary stage of Socialism, do not become fettered by the abstract controversy on “Is it called Capitalism or Socialism”.
II, Propaganda and ideological work have economic construction at the centre, submit and serve this centre.
Persist in having economic construction at the centre is bringing order out of the chaos of “taking class struggle as the key link”, is the basic guarantee for the undertaking of development, the stabilization of society and the consolidation of the regime, and is the highest interest and common aspiration of the broad popular masses. In the entire work of Party and State, there only is this one centre of economic construction, this centre cannot be deviated from, no more centres will be made. Economic departments must persist in this centre, other departments must also revolve around and serve this centre. Under regular circumstances, we must persist in this centre, under unusual circumstances, except where large-scale foreign hostile invasions take place, we shall also closely grasp this centre. All departments in propaganda and ideological work must seize this centre and not let it go, use many sorts of propaganda methods, adopt many kinds of propaganda means, to encourage and assist economic development, create a dense atmosphere of wholeheartedly engaging in economic construction, and bring the attention of the entire Party and the people in the entire country on concentrating energy to conduct Socialist modernization construction.
It is necessary to forcefully propagate Comrade Deng Xiaoping’s scientific judgement concerning development of productive forces being the basic task of Socialism, firmly establish the strategic ideology of “grasping the opportune moment, developing ourselves, developing the economy is key”. It is necessary to help the people to understand the severe challenges and advantageous opportunity our country faces through propaganda and education on international and domestic trends, strengthen a sense of urgency and a sense of responsibility concerning accelerating economic development. Strengthen propaganda on economic understanding. Propagate all regions’ and all departments’ linking with reality, open up domestic and foreign markets, under the presupposition of stressing quality and paying attention to productivity, accelerate the good methods and good experience of economic development. Propaganda dares to break through the fetters of the “left”, liberate thoughts, view matters from different perspectives, initiate economic construction and leading cadres, economic experts and entrepreneurs in the new picture of reform and opening up.
Economic construction must rely on science and technology, scientific and technological work must face economic construction. Propaganda departments must closely coordinate with science, technology and education departments, strengthen propaganda that science and technology is the first productive force and education is the basis, shape a desirable atmosphere in the whole society of highly regarding science and technology, highly regarding education, respecting knowledge and respecting talent, and promote the further implementation of Party policies on intellectuals.
III, Strengthen propaganda on reform and opening up, promote the healthy development of the undertaking of reform and opening up.
Reform is a new revolution for our country, and is the only path to liberate productive forces, strengthening the country and enriching the people; opening up to the outside world is a necessary condition for Socialist modernization. The decade of the Nineties are a key period in our country’s reform and opening up, and it faces formidable tasks. Through strengthening propaganda on reform and opening up, enable the broad cadres and masses to deepen their understanding on accelerating the pace of reform and opening up, become even more brimming with confidence in the prospects of reform and opening up, and vigorously throw themselves into the magnificent undertaking of reform and opening up.
Propaganda on reform and opening up must submit to and serve the general deployment of reform and opening up, and be coordinated with rolling out major measures on reform and opening up. At present, the focus is implementing the Central Committee “Opinions concerning Accelerating Reform, Expanding Opening Up and Striving for the Economy to Reach a New Stage Even Better and Faster” and the State Council “Regulations on Industrial Enterprises Owned by the Whole People Transforming Management Mechanisms”.
Propaganda on reform and opening up must help people to renew concepts. Some of our thoughts, concepts, habits and even language have been shaped under certain special conditions. For example, some have emerged from the environment of “taking class struggle as the key link”, some have emerged on the basis of a commodity economy, and are not adapted to the present requirements of reform, opening up and economic construction. At the same time, following the incessant deepening of reform and opening up, the relationships of interests of people will inevitably be touched upon and adjusted, new contradictions and new issues will emerge in ideology and concepts. It is necessary to utilize all sorts of propaganda tools to disambiguate and explain matters in a focused way, propagate commodity and market concepts, concepts of openness and competition, concepts of efficiency and productivity, concepts of democracy and the legal system, etc., and provide a beneficial public opinion environment for deepening reform and expanding openness.
Propaganda on reform and opening up must seek truth from facts, and prevent against one-sidedness. In introducing advanced models, conditions and environment must be clearly explained, and avoid blind popularization. Reform measures that are currently under trial must be enthusiastically supported, and trials encouraged, and treated cautiously and reliable, do not universally promote immature experiences.
IV, Persist in the principle of grasping with two hands, stimulate the construction of a Socialist spiritual society.
Persisting in grasping the material civilization and the spiritual civilization with both hands, is the strategic policy for constructing Socialism with Chinese characteristics. The construction of a Socialist spiritual civilization, must be the construction of a spiritual civilization that promotes Socialist modernization construction, stimulation of overall reform and opening up to the outside world, and persisting in the Four Cardinal Principles. Education on persisting in the Four Cardinal Principles must be conducted unwaveringly. It is necessary to fully understand the long-term nature of the existence of bourgeois liberalization trends and other grave dangers, and guard against foreign and domestic hostile forces in implementing peaceful evolution schemes against us.
Spiritual civilization construction must fix eyes on construction. It is necessary to adapt to the development of a commodity economy, realistically strengthen ideology and moral construction, and education, science, technology and culture construction. it is necessary to forcefully propagate advanced models of arduous undertaking, expansion and enterprise, courage and contribution emerging in large numbers in reform and opening up. Forcefully propose mass activities of spiritual civilization construction in town and country, earnestly summarize the new experiences of coastal regions, special economic zones, frontier trade zones and other regions that are relatively well-developed economically. Earnestly popularize the successful methods of masses in some localities launching self-education, and shaping desirable interpersonal relationships. Strengthen education on Socialist democracy and the legal system. Strengthen education on national defence, earnestly launch activities of supporting soldiers and their dependents, supporting the government and cherishing the people and police, soldiers and civilians jointly building civilization. It is necessary to integrate persisting in patriotic, collective and Socialist education for the people with conducting education on the Chinese nation’s excellent ideological and cultural traditions, and fine social morals. It is necessary to pay attention to researching and learning from the process of opening up to the outside world and economic development in a number of later-developed countries, attract beneficial foreign achievements of civilization, and resist the experience of the bad influence of foreign degenerate culture.
It is necessary to forcefully strengthen education work for the youth. The ideology and morals of youth and their scientific and cultural qualities relate to the future of the motherland. All levels’ Party Committees and governments must pay attention to this work. The whole society must care for the healthy growing up of youth. It is necessary to forcefully provide spiritual nourishment geared to the characteristics of youth. Cultural facility funding must be given preferentially to the youth and children.
The more reform and opening up are deepened, the more ideological and political work must be strengthened. Any viewpoint or method doubting or weakening ideological and political work is mistaken and damaging. Ideological and political work must be adapted to the requirements of the new trends and new tasks of reform, earnestly improve everything from content to methods, give rein to a vigorous function in reconciling disputes, harmonizing relations, smoothening emotions and mustering vigour.
“Sweeping pornography” and eradicating the “Six Evils” must be grasped unwaveringly. It is necessary to integrate concentrated attack and regular management, localities where problems are grave must engage in concentrated attack a few times per year. Forcefully strengthen cultural market management and legal system construction, continue to investigate and prosecute illegal publishing activities. Realistically strengthen anti-corruption and pro-honesty propaganda, encourage the broad masses to dare to struggle with all sorts of evil social phenomena.
Protecting cultural relics is one of our historical responsibilities. We must implement the policy of “giving first place to protection, putting saving first”, solidly use the State funds to preserve cultural relics well in the next ten year, strive to obtain a batch of preservation results as soon as possible.
V, Face reality, strengthen social science theory research
All major issues and complex issues in the world of today have a direct or indirect relationship with philosophy and the social sciences. It is necessary to give high regard to and strengthen social science research, and make it more dynamic and flourishing, provide spiritual drivers, knowledge support and ideological guarantees for economic construction, reform and opening up, and provide scientific support for the Party and the State to conduct major policymaking on economic and social development.
Theoretical research in social science must persist in taking Marxism as guidance, face reality, understand reality and research reality, it must research and expound all sorts of basic issues in the construction of Socialism with Chinese characteristics proposed by Comrade Deng Xiaoping. Research the rich practical experience of our country’s reform and opening up after the 3rd Plenum of the 11th Party Conference. Research the new situations and new issues emerging in the process of implementing the basic line of “one centre, two basic points”, at present, it is especially necessary to pay attention to researching how to enliven large-scale State run enterprises and other major issues. Realistically transform the situation that research on the above topics is not deep or systematic. At the same time, research on modern capitalism as well as all sorts of Western schools and theoretical trends must be strengthened, guide the people through theory to boldly attract and learn from all advanced operational means and management methods reflecting modern socialized production rules from all nations in the entire world, including capitalist developed nations. The necessary augmentation must be made of the topics selected in the “Eighth Five-Year Plan” for philosophy and social science, organize the compilation of a batch of high-quality theoretical articles and monographs.
It is necessary to improve cadres’ theoretical study on the basis of Comrade Deng Xiaoping’s spirit of “studying Marxism-Leninism must be excellent, and effective”, achieve less but better, divide into levels, stress effect.
VI, Let literature and art flourish, enliven the masses’ cultural life.
The basic task of literature and art is to satisfy the broad popular masses’ daily increasing cultural life needs. The present tendencies of prosperous development urgently require literature and art workers to further liberate thoughts, go deeply into reality, strive to reflect the spirit of the times, strive to display the real life of construction and reform, provide even more and even better spiritual nourishment to the broad popular masses.
To let literature and art flourish, we must persist in the principle of “serving the people and serving Socialism” and the policy of “letting a hundred flowers bloom and a hundred schools contend”. It is necessary to fully understand the multi-level nature and diversity of literature and art, to make our literature and art garden rich and varied. Because of “leftist” ideological influences, for a long time, one-sidedness has existed in the function of literature and art, the objective of literature and art, and the institution of standards for literature and art. Literature and art have functions in entertainment, aesthetics, knowledge, education and many other areas. We shall fully give regard to and strive to give rein to the ideological education function of literature and art, and must at the same time fully give rein to the function of literature and art in knowledge, aesthetics and entertainment. We must advocate more creation of works that are beneficial politically and ideologically, that the masses love to see and year, and are not to oppose works that are harmless ideologically and politically, are relatively good artistically, that the masses love to see and hear. Literature and art are complex spiritual labours, and it is extremely necessary that literators and artists give rein to their individual creative spirit, what to write and how to write it can only be progressively decided through exploration by literators and artists in artistic practice. In this area, there must not be flagrant interference. It is necessary to continue to create a democratic and harmonious environment for the broad literature and art workers to concentrate on creation. It is necessary to strengthen literature and art comment work, and advocate fair and friendly discussion. All art categories, all schools of writers and artists must strengthen unity and cooperation between them, and concentrate their strengths on producing work and producing talent.
It is necessary to forcefully support town and country mass-type culture activities, including the nascent community culture, enterprise culture, school ground culture, household culture, street culture, tourist culture, karaoke and other mass self-entertainment activities, and strengthen guidance, so they develop healthily.
VII, Improve press and publications work.
The news front must follow the tides of the times, use outstanding propaganda and reports to guide and hearten cadres and masses to unwaveringly and completely implement the basic Party line. Persist in the principle of giving first place to positive propaganda, give rein to the functions of public opinion guidance and public opinion supervision, achieve the goals of unity, stability and enthusiasm. Advocate short news, increase information amounts. Link up closely with the masses, fully reflect the activities of grass-roots cadres and masses creating a new life. Stress writing skill, strive for liveliness and vivacity, strengthen the persuasiveness and readability of news. Newspapers, television, radio and other news tools must give rein to their superiority on the basis of their special characteristics, and concentrate on their distinguishing features.
Since some time, the phenomena of excessive reporting of common meetings and the normal activities of leaders has been existing gravely on radio, television and in newspapers, fomenting formalism, this had already given rise to strong dissatisfaction from the broad cadres and masses, and further measures must be adopted to improve news reporting of meetings and the activities of leaders. It is necessary to reduce reports on common meetings, do not make leading comrades’ attendance into standards of whether or not to report something. All sorts of ribbon-cutting, foundation laying, first publication, premiere, anniversary and other activities are generally not to be reported. All levels’ responsible cadres must pioneer the initiation of a practical work style, and support news work units to improve news reporting in this area.
Publication departments must strengthen links with economic departments, select topics revolving around economic construction and expanding opening up, and raise publishing quality. It is necessary to adapt to the requirements of different levels of readers, publish more books and publish better books.
VIII, Strengthen foreign propaganda, strive to create a desirable international public opinion environment.
The basic task of foreign propaganda work is propagating ourselves, let foreigners and overseas compatriots timely, completely and truthfully understand China. At present, it is necessary to strive to propagate our unwavering persistence in taking economic construction as the centre, as well as the new achievements of deepening reform and expanding opening-up, dissolving people’s misgivings and misunderstandings, raise our international prestige and strengthen or foreign-related attraction.
Foreign propaganda must strengthen in focus, and raise propaganda skill. It is necessary to determine propaganda content and propaganda forms on the basis of the characteristics of propaganda targets. Adopt multiple, varied, vivid and vigorous methods and means to make people like to hear or see it, and to avoid empty preachings or imposing views on others.
Do work on foreign journalists resident in our country well. Provide convenient and correct information for their regular reporting, reduce distorted propaganda about us as much as possible, and increase objective propaganda that is beneficial to us.
Strengthen foreign-related propaganda battlefield construction. Perfect existing management structures and methods for central and local foreign-related provision of television and video programmes, in order to guarantee ample foreign-related programme resources.
IX, Conduct structural reform of the ideological front in a planned and guided manner.
The existing leadership and management structure of propaganda and ideology work departments is not adapted to the new trends in economic development, reform and opening up in some areas, and reform must be conducted. Through reform, rationalize relationships, transform functions, train troops, streamline administration and raise efficiency. This work involves broad areas and has a strong political nature, it is necessary to liberate thoughts and experiment boldly, and to remain cautious, reliable, and progressively conduct this.
All propaganda and ideological work departments must, on the basis of investigation and research, start from reality, and conduct reform of institutional structuring, management structures, human resource systems, economic management methods, etc. For example, reform of theatre troupe structures, concentrate forces to run theatre troupes representing national-level artistic levels. Appropriately expand local and border region foreign-related cultural exchange powers, loosen time limits on artistic personnel having special skills to accept job offers abroad, perform abroad or hold positions. Reform publishing structures, vigorously conduct experiments to establish publishing, printing and distribution enterprise groups. Rationalize television and audiovisual structures, clarify responsibilities and tasks. The Federation of Cultural Circles, the Writers’ Association, the Journalists’ Association and other mass cultural organizations shall, according to the “Social Organization Registration and Management Regulations” continue to implement structural reform, and strive to provide services for writers, artists and news workers.
It is necessary to strengthen legal system construction in the propaganda and culture areas. Grasp the formulation of the Publications Law, the Performance Law, cultural market management regulations, as well as regulations on using foreign capital to set up cultural undertakings, etc.
X, Strive to construct a series of propaganda and ideology work teams adapted to the requirements of economic construction, reform and opening up.
Completely and correctly propagating the basic Party line, vigorously stimulating the undertaking of modernization construction, reform and opening up, safeguarding the political picture of unity and stability, all require a line of propaganda and ideology work teams who are strong in politics, excellent professionally and who have an upright work style, and especially needs a batch of young theory workers. Because of this, it is necessary to adopt realistic and powerful means to strengthen the construction of propaganda, theory, literature, art, news and publishing teams.
Propaganda cadres must earnestly study Marxism-Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought, study Comrade Deng Xiaoping’s theory of constructing Socialism with Chinese characteristics, and raise political qualities. At the same time, they must strive to study economic knowledge, grasp the mastery of abilities to propagate economic construction, reform and opening up. Integrate an enterprising spirit with an attitude of seeking truth, go deeply into factories and the countryside, and maintain close links with the broad masses.
Straiten propaganda discipline, strengthen professional moral and clean government construction. It is absolutely not permitted to publish discussions opposing Centre decisions in open propaganda in newspapers, periodicals or on radio or television. Those seeking or accepting bribes must be severely investigated and prosecuted.
According to the principle of “revolutionization, becoming younger, and intellectualization” and the standards for having both ability and integrity, strengthen propaganda team construction. It is necessary to boldly promote those comrades who firmly believe in Comrade Deng Xiaoping’s theory of Socialism with Chinese characteristics, earnestly implement the basic Party line and have excellent work achievements to leading positions in all departments on the propaganda and ideology front. Select a batch of cadres from economic departments and the first line of reform and opening up in a planned manner to substantiate propaganda and ideology cadre teams.
XI, Appropriately strengthen input into propaganda and culture undertakings.
At present, propaganda and culture departments, and especially grass-roots work units are generally short in funds, town and country cultural facilities are backward. The requirements put forward by the 7th Plenum of the 13th Party Congress that “the centre and the localities must bring spiritual civilization construction into economic and social development plans, and progressively increase the necessary inputs”, shall be further implemented. The state must, firing the annual staff allocation and middle or long-term economic and social development planning, progressively increase financial input into spiritual civilization construction. The State Council financial department must research and resolve the issues that propaganda and cultural work units’ tax burdens are overly heavy and funding programmes are overly many. The state must implement differentiated tax rates on spiritual products. The tax income of the propaganda and culture system and profits turned over to the state must in principle be returned into the propaganda and culture system, and used to develop propaganda and culture undertakings. Finance, taxation and pricing departments shall actively research and prefect cultural economic policies together with culture departments.
XII, Strengthen Party guidance over propaganda and ideological work.
Propaganda and ideology work is an important component part of Party Committee work, all levels’ Party Committees and especially main responsible cadres must give it high regard, and put it on the important matters agenda, regularly discuss it, and regularly grasp it.
Party committees must, when deploying important work, put requests to and determine tasks of propaganda and ideology departments, and fully give rein to the function that propaganda and ideology work departments should have. It is necessary to regularly inspect and supervise matters, strengthen guidance, and keep the gate of propaganda on major issues personally. It is necessary to attract propaganda cadres to participate in relevant policymaking meetings, make them understand and familiar with the overall picture of work. It is necessary to assist propaganda and ideology workers to resolve real difficulties in human, financial and material resources, etc., and create the necessary work conditions for them.
Our country is in a key period of Socialist modernization construction, the propaganda and ideology front bears a heavy task, the broad cadres must liberate thoughts, exert themselves, work soundly, and welcome the convention of the 14th Party Congress with excellent achievements!