Up to the late 1970s, China and India's economies were comparable. Since then, as the article shows, China is doing a better job of bettering the lives of its citizens. India is leading in computer software but in almost everything else China is advancing more rapidly. This raises some interesting questions: Why cannot a democracy beat a communist regime? (Note the Western standard says that economic and political freedoms go together--if you want economic prosperity you have to have a liberal political system... or that's what the West is telling Russia and Eastern Europe.) Is it due to culture factors? Did the "Cultural Revolution" in late 1960s and early 1970s at the costs of millions of lives under the communists make it easier for today's China to break with the past and to take off, noting in India some have blamed traditions for blocking progress? Which is a better model for Third World countries to follow in development and modernization? Interestingly, the article does not make note of the factor that China has a Taiwan and a HongKong which significantly aid developments in the mainland, something India does not have
The gap between the performance of the world's two largest nations, China and India, keeps growing. Two instances from entirely different fields should give us an idea. The world's first commercial maglev (magnetic levitation) train is operating between the Pudong International Airport and downtown Shanghai. It takes just seven minutes to cross the 30-kilometre distance -- which is about the same distance between Mumbai's international airport and Nariman Point, which takes anywhere from 75 minutes to a couple of hours, to cover. In a different field, China won 63 medals in the last Olympics; India just one. The growing gap in economic performance, too, evidences few signs of narrowing. Historically, there are a number of similarities between the two: ancient civilisations, the world's leading and richest at...