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Theoretical Research on Ecological Turning Constructed by Government Credibility

Jiang Lihong

(Marxism School of Hunan City University, Yiyang, Hunan 413000, China)

Abstract: Government credibility---the public’s trust in government administrative ability, falls within the ambit of political civilization. Searching for an appropriate way of rational living is the internal demand for the establishment of government credibility. Ecological civilization, which is to search for living conditions in line with the purpose for human beings, is the result of a harmonious relationship between human beings and nature, society. Thus, there exists correspondence, similarity and consistence between ecological civilization and the establishment of government credibility. The research is to explore the ecological turning constructed by the government credibility at a basic research level.
Key words: government credibility, establishment, ecological turning, theoretical basis

 Ever since the implementation of Reforming and Opening up, in the past thirty years, China has received remarkable achievement in economy that has attracted the worldwide attention. And great progress has been made in politics as well. Not only does it reap tremendous benefits from administrative reform, but also brings forth the new through the old in administrative concept. However, in reality, there exist some problems in the process of constructing service-oriented government, such as, the simple and crude way taken by some local government authorities, abuse of administrative power, inefficiency in administrative tasks, distortions of information and so on(Tang & Yu & Zhang, 2011). These problems will jeopardize the authority, fairness of the government and be inimical to the interest of the public, resulting in the decline of government credibility. How to improve government credibility has attracted increasing attention in political civilization research.
The central part of civilization is people. It is the fruit of constructing living condition in line with purpose, and so is the ecological civilization. It is a living condition in line with purpose for solving ecological crisis. The establishment of political civilization needs to explore the ways of creating a rational living condition. As government credibility belongs to the political civilization, it should create a rational living condition. It demands that governments highlight morality and moral ideals. What the government credibility tries to construct is the basic concept of ecological civilization theory, disciplinary characteristics, and the relationship between man and nature and the relationship between human beings themselves.
 Ideological origins of government credibility
“Credibility”, deriving from the English word “accountability”, means the responsibility for the report, explanation and defense of one case; being responsible for one’s own behavior; being questioned by the public. Modern Chinese Dictionary defines credibility as “public’s confidence”. In short, Zhou Junjie and Wei lan (2008)have pointed that credibility means the public’s trust in fairness, justice, efficiency, humanity, democracy, responsibility shown by the public power in the face of time difference, public interaction and interest exchange in social life. Credibility is not only a kind of social systematic confidence, but also a reflex of public authority, belonging to the category of political ethics. Government credibility is one of the credibility media as well. The spread of SARS in 2003 has made domestic scholars realize the importance of government credibility, and some of them begins to study on it. One of the representative researches made by Bo Guili(2008) is that government credibility is the public’s confidence and approval, which governments gain from their own actions. It reflects the public’s trust and satisfaction in government. While Lv Zhizhi(2011) argues that government credibility, including honesty, authority, influence, is the ability of getting public’s support. It is the objective result of government’s administrative ability, reflecting its influence on the public, democracy, and statutory establishment.
Government credibility is composed of government- credit party and public-trusted party. Government is the credit party, the act of credibility; the public is the main part of the evaluation. Only with active interaction between government and the publican the government promote credibility, establishing fair, just, democratic and efficient institutions. The disciplinary characteristics and practice mode of ecological civilization make a positive interaction and implementation mode between trustee party-government and truster party-the public possible.
 Ideological origins of Ecological civilization
“Eco”, stemming from ancient Greek word, means “house or environment”. “Ecology”, now refers to the living condition of creatures, the relationship between creatures, and between creatures and environment. Ever since German biologist E. Heckle proposed the concept of “ecology” in 1869, it has been permeated every part of the society. Ecological civilization, in a philosophical perspective, examines the relationship between human beings, as well as between human beings and society, man and nature, and searches for the living condition in line with purpose.
In western ecological concept, there exist different formulations about ecological civilization: ecological postmodernism, post-industrial society, ecological moderni- zation, post-industrial civilization. American scholar, Charlene Spretnek, argues that ecological postmodernism, representing human beings’ development in the future is an approach beyond modern failure hypothesis, and an approach of reestablishing our sense on the realistic foundation. Russian scholar, Inozemtsev, proposes post-industrial society economy, arguing that the arrival of post-industrial society is the realization of basic principles of communism. German scholars of Martin Jienei Ke, Joseph Huber put forward ecological modernization theory, which requires the adoption of principles of prevention and innovation, and promotes the disconnection between economic growth and environmental degradation. Furthermore, it regards sustainable development as an important goal, aiming to achieve a win-win outcome both economically and environmentally.
In China, scholars have different interpretations on the ecological civilization. Pan Yue, the Vice Minister of the State Environmental Protection Department, believes that ecological civilization refers to the combination of material and spiritual achievements while human beings follow the objective laws of harmonious development between man, nature and the society. Deputy Director of the Central Compilation and Translation Bureau Yu Keping argues that ecological civilization is the whole achievement obtained in the process of human beings’ trying to change nature to achieve the harmony between man and nature, representing the progress in their relationship. The above sentence is cited from one of book written by Yu Keping (2005). Ecological civilization includes consciousness, law, regulations and policies of protecting natural environment, and the scientific technology, institution and practical action of keeping the ecological balance and maintaining the sustainable development.
 Disciplinary characteristics of ecological civilization as the theoretical research basis of ecological turning constructed by government credibility.
In ecological civilization, a kind of social civilization, there exist a large number of “actual” phenomena, but more “ought” phenomena reflecting the development of human beings and the society. Ecological civilization is a scientific concept, abstracted from experiences and facts, amenable to practice, with the internal and external attributes of scientific concept. Ecological civilization brings about rational harmony in the relationship between man and nature, society and human beings themselves, making the rational living and ideal society possible. These characteristics provide theoretical basis and logical premise for the establishment of government credibility, providing the possibility of ecologi- cal turning.
One characteristics of ecological civilization in the modern era is the harmonious relationship between man and nature, instead of conflicting relationship in the past civilized society. According to Marxism, development is emergence of new things along with the doom of old things. It is inevitable that desirable ecological civilization takes the place of industrial civilization with the conflicting relationship between man and nature in the historical process. Regularity is one of characteristics of ecological civilization and the logical premise of government credibility. It requires that the establishment of government credibility should be based on respecting for facts and following the laws of historical development.
Ecological civilization is the anchorage of people’s hope and pursuit of better lives, compatible with social development, the purpose of which is people-oriented. From the perspective of sustainable development, some scholars argue that the characteristics of ecological civilization can be reflected in the emphasis on the reform of human development mode. Some scholars believe that sustainable development is to liberate people from alienation of relentless competition, allowing people time and opportunities to be educated and do researches, rather than only transferring human and natural resources into capital. Engels said: "Whatever the outcome of history, people always create their own history through pursuing their own expected purpose. The summation of forces employed by people in various activities in the external world constitutes history.” Purposiveness of ecological civilization manifests the concept of putting people the first, which promotes people’s free and all-round development and helps building a more harmonious society.
Ecological civilization argues for the concept of environmental protection, low-carbon energy, sustainable development, the reform of production and consumption patterns in natural and human society, principles of rationalization, legality and moderation. It emphasizes the improvement of quality, rather than the repetition of quantity. The establishment of government credibility should be future-oriented, on the basis of the present condition. The concept of environmental protection, low-carbon energy and sustainable development provides theoretical basis for government’s reduction in public’s appeal difference and future development.
The central idea of laws is to achieve a fair, orderly and normal society. Legitimacy is the foundation to the existence of things in the world. The purpose of ecological civilization is to search for a living condition in line with purpose for human beings. It argues for harmonious and sustainable development of natural and human society. Legitimacy of ecological civilization provides referential criteria for the legality of establishment of government credibility. The starting point of constructing government credibility should ensure that people are masters of the country, and to promote a fair, harmonious and sustainable development of political civilization, so as to be in line with legitimacy. The objectives and requirement of the two sides of government credibility-government and the public-should be established based on legitimacy to practice political civilization and protect people’s rights of being the masters of the country.
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