China's Leadership Is Really, Really Rich

One need not wonder why official corruption is such a concern there.
businessinsider.jpgDeutsche Bank

35 or so years ago, China's leaders weren't that much better off than the people they served. That has, according to this chart (via Business Insider), has changed. A lot.

The cozy relationship between politics and money exists in every society, but it's striking to see the extent to which wealth buys influence in China. The government has attempted to crack down on corruption by banning ostentatious displays of wealth among government leaders, hoping that fewer boozy lunches and expensive watches will improve the Party's image among common people. But unless the fundamental link between political and financial advancement is severed, it's hard to imagine anything changing.

Matt Schiavenza is a contributing writer for The Atlantic. He is a former global-affairs writer for the International Business Times and Atlantic senior associate editor.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

A Stop-Motion Tour of New York City

A filmmaker animated hundreds of still photographs to create this Big Apple flip book

Video

The Absurd Psychology of Restaurant Menus

Would people eat healthier if celery was called "cool celery?"

Video

This Japanese Inn Has Been Open For 1,300 Years

It's one of the oldest family businesses in the world.

Video

What Happens Inside a Dying Mind?

Science cannot fully explain near-death experiences.

More in China

Just In