Friday, January 7, 2011

Indicators of SOMETHING

What does a death rattle sound like? In an animal, much like a human, it sounds like a severe case of congestion. In politics, is sounds like magnanimity. In business, it sounds like double-speak.

Does this sound like the death rattle of a regime?
North Korea removed a clause that made it mandatory for the party to hold a general convention every five years, the source said. Instead, the party can now elect senior members and revise its regulations just by holding a top delegates' meeting.
Or what about this?
The revision signals that the commission may grow more powerful than the National Defense Commission, the highest seat of power headed by Kim Jong-il but not yet joined by Kim Jong-un, he said.
Both quotes are from an article by Yonhap on leadership changes in North Korea. (Via NK Economy Watch.)

This newfound ability for the young Kim to re-organize party leadership in an instant creates a significantly more volatile power structure. Granted, Kim senior was more than capable of reshuffling the elites should one displease him. But the institutionalizing of this reorganization mechanism (more accurately, de-institutionalizing) does not fill me with confidence. Internal power struggles have never been pleasant for the DPRK's neighbors and these reforms seem to be laying the groundwork for further upheaval.

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