Action and romance fiction in review

On an otherwise dull and grey day for local news and views, China Daily splashes loud and vibrant colours around to brighten up the canvass of our humdrum lives.

Out there on the dark fringes of Hong Kong society, where fanatical devotion to the Communist Party-as-Motherland merges into mentally unhinged hostility towards anyone who differs, we have Lau Nai-keung. He notes the ‘return’ of the United States to the Asia-Pacific region.

By throwing its weight around over territorial disputes from India to the South China Sea to Japan over the last couple of years, China has essentially sent a message to the rest of the region: contain us or we will probably all regret it. So now, by popular demand from virtually every other Asian country, Uncle Sam is boosting its military profile in the neighbourhood in ways that are relatively minor but carefully designed to be visible to Beijing. The next move is for the Chinese leadership to find a way to reconcile the nationalism-stirring xenophobia it feeds its domestic audience with the peace-love-and-understanding vibes it broadcasts for foreign consumption.

Lau will have none of it. Hong Kong is the front-line in the coming conflagration. Without Article 23 laws to imprison anti-Communist media mogul Jimmy Lai, he froths, and with our city exposed to evil international Western financial speculators, the Big Lychee is no less than the weakest link in China’s national security – the Trojan horse that could undermine the country from within and return it to Qing Dynasty barbarian subjugation. Or something like that, anyway. Interestingly, there is hope: the apocalyptic clash, he predicts, will see Hong Kong “regain its old glory”. It brightened up my morning.

Just down the page, Ho Chi-ping comes up with a plan of almost child-like charm and simplicity that will enable Hong Kong’s increasingly loathed and distrusted business community to make itself popular among the city’s cynical and rebellious masses. It takes a while to get going, and a double espresso or two might help the reader get through the first few paragraphs, while perhaps vaguely recalling the author as Patrick Ho – the eye doctor married to the Taiwanese actress – who was in Tung Chee-hwa’s administration in the mid-2000s as Home Affairs Secretary.

Ho notes that the elections for the 1,200-strong Election Committee are of little interest to most people, and he admits (in essence) that they are rigged and biased towards vested business interests. This leads to his amazing breakthrough. What, he postulates in an Einstein-like flash of insight, if these vested interests didn’t think about themselves and the short-term profits to be had by stuffing their snouts in the government trough at everyone else’s expense? What if they demanded a government that looked after the rest of the population for a change? Wouldn’t it be an amazing thing to happen? Wouldn’t it be… ever so nice? And flocks of smiling tweety-birds would fly around in the bright sunshine, and it would be Christmas every day.

And to think no-one has ever thought of it before. Thank heavens for China Daily.

Click to hear ‘What’s So Funny About Peace, Love and Understanding?’ by Elvis Costello!


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10 Responses to Action and romance fiction in review

  1. Joe Blow says:

    As a student, Dr. Ho used to busk in the street with a guitar, singing Bob Die-lan songs.

    In retirement he writes anti-establishment pieces in a venomous, reactionary CCP-loving rag.

    strange dude…

  2. I can’t get past the first paragraphs of any of Lau’s articles, the spittle coming directly of the page stings my eyes. Rabies anyone?

  3. R Lloyd says:

    thats one fat face

  4. maugrim says:

    “regain its old glory” . He either refers to HK under British rule or that of a small fishing village. Either way an interesting view given the context of his usual spews.

  5. darovia says:

    Lau Nai Keung scares me and should scare others too: “If this law were already in place Lai would be behind bars, if the SAR government followed US practice.” – An unsubtle piece of camouflaging; he would be behind bars if the SAR government followed China practice also. Let’s hope they never let Lau out of his cage.

  6. Stephen says:

    Lau Nai Keung is a harmless blunt instrument. Frankly if the China Daily wasn’t given away free no one would know about his looney ravings.

    Meanwhile elsewhere in twilight zone the Sub-Standards Siu Sai-wo is hailing that modern wonder of the world Hong Kong Disneyland. Is the man mad or just ill after eating some tough pork, where are his eyes ? Questions Questions …

  7. Probably says:

    One fat face and one fat chance of what Ho Chi-ping says ever happening…

  8. Probably says:

    Agree with Maugrim, Only chance for HK to “regain it’s old glory” is to hand it back to the UK – being such a well run harmonious nation flushed with economic success itself……oh!

  9. Sen says:

    Jimmy Lai is now a Scot! and Free!! and apparently has a thumb up his nose!
    Can’t read more as ribs hurt

  10. Roger Maxims says:

    …the reason why we have civil servants in HK – so that they can form associations and blather about their allowances, subsidies and pay adjustment every year.

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