One drama after another

Hong Kong Chief Executive CY Leung tries a new tactic against detractors in yesterday’s Legislative Council interrogation: exasperating them to death. The session (OK, the short bit I could bear) included a flashback to the deeper mysteries surrounding the CE quasi-election earlier this year, but inquisitors successfully wrestled the topic back to the mind-numbing subject at hand. Perhaps this helps explain CY’s above-averagely Sphinx-like performance; from Beijing officials’ point of view the trellises, lies and videotape saga is a perfect distraction from some genuinely intriguing questions about how illegal structures were made public in such a way as to derail a whole rigged election and dislodge an entrenched ruling caste.

For real soap opera, we have to go back to our former colonial rulers. The story starts with an ugly rich woman widely held to be a stunning beauty who marries a dimwit heir (or demi-heir, or something) to the figurehead monarchy that reigns-not-rules over the UK, Australia and other fun places. Pregnant, she goes into a London hospital with some sort of ultra-morning sickness we would rather not hear about. For a joke, an Oz radio station calls the hospital pretending to be the Queen, and apparently gets through. After some hilarity, the nurse who accepted the call is besieged in her home by Britain’s highly intellectual press, where, in a decidedly unfunny twist, she kills herself. Tom Wolfe couldn’t think this up. The Oz DJs are now being ritually strung up in the global village square, while everyone neatly sidesteps the obvious issue of the poor nurse’s pre-existing mental health condition, and no-one asks why so many media consumers are so fascinated by all these nonentities. Hong Kong thinks it’s good at this stuff, but really we’re years behind.

For local melodrama, we must stick to real estate. An interesting article crops up in the South China Morning Post’s business section on the collateral damage resulting from the Hong Kong government’s measures to cool down the luxury property market…

The unexpected bomb dropped by the Hong Kong government in late October on the city’s overheated luxury housing market is akin to America’s carpet bombing in the late 1960s of what was then known as communist North Vietnam.

At least, that is how one market watcher describes the government’s attempt to curb the city’s property prices.

Both actions had little regard, if any, for unintended casualties or victims…

The levy has virtually removed new mainland investors – who account for more than 40 per cent of new homes worth HK$12 million or more – from the city’s luxury housing market…

But the mainlanders’ hasty retreat has also sparked a chain reaction that has put a heavy toll on various businesses that used to live off that mad rush of buyers. They include public relations and advertising companies, which help developers market new projects, hotels where developers wine and dine potential mainland investors and suppliers of food and drink, as well as firms that provide entertainment at such marketing banquets.

We then get a sob-story about a property-focused PR company losing money after the cancellation of a sales bash for 500 ‘VIP guests’ coming to Hong Kong to launder their money and buy up local housing to keep empty. Back on page A4, the rise of a new class of young working poor is blamed on high property prices and the consequent lack of opportunities. So this is the other side of the story: the innocent victims of the carpet bombing. Could it possibly happen to a nicer bunch of people?

Tomorrow’s excitement…

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18 Responses to One drama after another

  1. Old Timer says:

    It seems pretty clear that CY is now toast, being unable to appear in Legco or anywhere in public without causing a disturbance, and with apparently dwindling public support. Something’s got to give. Soon.

  2. The Most Reverend Lois Beluga says:

    Late in the afternoon, the Chief Legislators with the elders and scribes and the whole Council, immediately held a consultation; and summoning CY, they delivered Him to Legco.

    They questioned Him, “Are You a pawn of the NPC? Did You build a trellis in your Garden and even not tell us about it?”

    And He answered them, “It is as you say now I think about it but what the hell, I’m Governor and you are not.”  

    The Pan-Democrats began to accuse Him harshly.  Then they questioned Him again, saying, “Do You not answer? See how many charges they bring against You!”

    But CY made no further answer; so they were amazed.

    Answering again, the Convenor said to them, “Then what shall I do with Him whom you call the Chief Executive ?”  

    They shouted back, “Crucify Him!”

    But the Convenor said to them, “Why, what evil has He done?”

    But they shouted all the more, “Crucify Him!”

    Wishing to satisfy vested interests and the CCP, the Convenor called for a vote and said “Lo, you do not have the remotest chance of crucifying Him, so piss off and get back to your chambers, your writs, your refreshers and your frothing. I fart in your general direction.”

    (Mark 16 – Hong Kong Revised Standard Version)

  3. Real Tax Payer says:

    @ Most Rev Beluga

    I love the HKRSV !


  4. Wanchai Dreamer says:

    If CY came clean and admitted everything in one go, with full information about steps taken to remedy it, the problem would presumably go away. If he made a quarter-tolerable CE, the poor pan-democrats would be finessed again, and we might even get a reasonable amount of democracy by 2018 or 2022.

    But by then the legal system, especially the brown and white skins lurking in its midst, will have rotted, so there won’t be much harmony or joining hands.

  5. mumphLT says:

    My heart does not bleed and I do not give a flying fuck about mainland ‘investors’ the parasites that live off them nor the CE’s illegal deck chairs.

    LEGCO is wasting valuable time and just looks like the waste of fucking money & time it currently is.

  6. Real Tax Payer says:

    Hot off the SCMP today : “The Commission on Poverty is gearing up to bring in fresh measures to curb the city’s growing poverty numbers – one in every six Hongkongers survives on HK$3,600 or less a month “

    I can’t help feeling there is a certain irony in all this, especially considering yesterday’s controversial opinions of Hemmers and Mike Rowse .

    The monstrous rich-poor gap in HK was largely created by the tycoons who made their vast fortunes from building works authorized – fully authorized, nay encouraged by and in collusion with previous administrations.

    Said tycoons are now pissed-off that their stooge Tang was defeated by CY. And this – if are to believe the current LEGCO soap opera – is all apparently because of a single unauthorized building work, which surely all Tang’s tycoon friends knew about, but no-one , not even the Tycoon’s Ming Pao journalist friends, ever investigated before . Tut tut.

    And now, the “champions of the people” the glorious pro- dems, civics, people power … even Long Hair, whatever and whoever, have joined hands with the tycoons to bring down CY. That is the CY who is at last trying to do something to make HK a better place for the 99% of us who are not tycoons, not to mention the 15% who survive on less than $3,600 p.m.

    Give me any day CY albeit he mis-estimated a bricked up cellar at 200 sf instead of 320 sf than someone like Tsang who told us the biggest lie of all when he said “I will get the job done” knowing he neither could do it, and worse still would not even try to do it. LIER !

  7. mumphLT says:

    If CY fails I’d prefer it if he’d been given chance to do what he said he’d do. The witch hunt doesn’t help anyone in HK apart from the miserable very few elite who want even more cream.

    All of the opposition to him, to what he is trying to do can not offer one single policy or candidate offering anything better.

    They are a fucking disgrace and they may well be surprised when they find out the people in HK don’t appreciate their sabotage efforts.

  8. Maugrim says:

    ‘Mis-estimated’ and not a ‘lier’ (sic) ? The guy is a qualified surveyor. He is either incompetent, a liar, or forgetful that there were plenty in HK out to get him who were just looking for an opportunity, or all of the above. Seriously RTP give it a rest. The pro-dems feasting on a carcass I can at least comprehend, but Leung as some sort of paragon of virtue? Please desist.

  9. Slavia Wanderer says:

    Why the hell miss CY? No need! No, CY must be impeached! I can’t wait to see Henry back, or Carrie Lam (who may be the best enforcer but who doesn’t seem to have her own political vision) take over. Of course tycoons must prevail. This is Hong Kong, after all. I’m joining the real estate agent teams tomorrow. Nothing beats ripping off the poor.

  10. Real Tax Payer says:

    @ Maugrim

    I have a Ph D in maths but I still have to add a small column of numbers at least 3 times to get the same result twice. QED

    BTW : I never said CY is a paragon of virtue. It’s just that when the opposition are ( to quote mumphLT) a “fucking disgrace” – which description I fully endorse – “in the land of the blind a one-eyed man is king” so to speak.

    Or to adapt a quote from Winston Churchill, who also went through a wilderness period when everyone was against him – much like CY is experiencing now : ” CY is the worst type of CE, apart from all the others who would like to be CE “

  11. Lantauista says:

    How things turn around. If I were running a book on who’d get the most done in the next six months I’d price Obama way ahead of Xi Jinping and CY Leung. Xi can set at least the South China Sea on fire and jail a few critics. CY, after squandering his honeymoon period BEFORE he took office and misstepping ever since, CY has the political capital to do exactly nothing.

  12. Slavia Wanderer says:

    I find the debate over CY interestingly reveals different psychologies. It’s like bread vs. core values, the solid vs. the abstract, potential benefits vs. potential dangers, hope for the better vs. suspicion of the worse, the cynical vs. the desperately virtuous, the cynical vs. the even more cynical, etc etc.

    But it ultimately boils down to the fear of the original sin. It depends on whether you believe in it to judge if CY’s a devil or a person. Let’s face it. Integrity talks are BS. Those don’t trust him wouldn’t trust him with or without it.

  13. Property Developer says:

    CY is a crook in the mould of Nixon, and a patriotic creep as well. He’s been shown to be dishonest, and once the public takes this on board, he’ll be even more of a lame duck.

  14. The Quifth Beatle says:

    CY is a certified Commie-lover, yet he is obscenely rich.

    He professes to be a man of the people, yet lives in a 100 + million dollar mansion.

    He made his fortune in the property industry (surveyor) yet he is supposed to detest the property cowboys.

    He was Convenor under the ancient regime, yet he ran against the Anointed One.

    He held The Stallion to account re his illegal basement, yet he kept quiet about his own illegal extensions.

    He is supposedly anti-Establishment yet he appoints Vagina Ip to Legco (not scoring any points there, pal).

    Draw your own conclusions.

    PS. @RTP, first you tell us that you are a Mensa member (and Nury-lover to boot) and now we have to know that you have a Ph D in maths. What’s your problem ?

  15. Real Tax Payer says:

    @ The Quifth Bealte , PD , Lantauista et al:

    Seems I am rattling your cage …

    Good . Rattle rattle rattle

    I think deep down you fear I just might – just- be right at about CY in the long term, but you certainly don’t dare admit it because of your inward uncertainties and you dare not admit that you just … might … be … wrong

    True? ( No need to answer. I know it hurts to do so )

    CY is certainly no paragon and he’s made some bloody f*******g stooopid mistakes in his first few months. No question about that. And his handling of trellis-gate is naive to the extreme. No “real” politician would ever have stepped so much in his own doo-doo.

    Which makes me think he is really not a politician, and that is actually good news because 99% of politicians are pure bullshit.

    But that’s precisely what makes me think : what is CY’s real motive ?

    I would not take on his job even if you paid me a billion $. And he is rich enough to walk away from this job and tell the pro-dems and all the rest of HK “f**k you all” …..or more politely
    “I fart in your general direction” to quote Right Rev Beluga

    But he hasn’t done so. Why ?

    So what is driving CY ? That’s what I ask myself

    If it’s immediate pride, then he’s finished even before the race started. Whatever he does, good or bad in the next 5 years, will be judged as “bad” for as long as he lives. But Deng Xiaoping behaved the same way: Deng didn’t give a rat’s arse as to what people thought about him during his lifetime as long as he truly did the “right thing” while he could. Deng left it to history to judge him correctly. And by gad history has some pretty awful things to say about some ( but not all) previous HK governors (and a certain recent CE) who were popular for a brief moment in their time but did the totally wrong thing long-term.

    But if it’s to really GET THE JOB DONE then what I do see is action , real action. Christine Loh / environment ( and she’s nobody’s stooge!) , committee on poverty, moves ( maybe mis-fired, but still moves) to curb the property craze, stop the parallel traders, fight the Heung Yee Kuk , ( take on the Tycoons ? ) etc.

    I supported CY only because the alternative was just too awful to contemplate, and it was Hemmer’s Warhol – theme article in Time Out that sealed it for me. Blame Hemmers.

    OK, CY got in by a swing and and a fudge ( and a big last minute push from BJ, which meant BJ also regarded the awful tang as just too awful, and enough is enough of the obnoxious tycoons)

    So I say, give CY a chance . Anyway, it’s decided in BJ that he will have a chance so the Most Rev Beluga was correct this morning in analysis from Mark’s gospel ( HKRSV)

    Frankly speaking : I would give anyone a chance in the CE position if he would only fix just a few of the problems donald-the-duckout has left us with, even if it were Richard Nixon.

    The opposition are such dim-witted, gutless, cowardly, vision-less ratfinks that to quote again from mumphLT : they are a “fucking disgrace”

    CY may indeed be a disgrace to the thinking of the scribes and pharisees who “cast out a splinter but cannot see the bolt in their own eye” , but I would rather have a “disgraced” CE who will get some things done than a “fucking disgrace” alternative who will do precisely nothing for the next 5 years and follow the beck and call of the tycoons , HSBC and RHKJC, as has every governor and CE from time immemorial

    My case rests m’Lord. QED

    PS: @ Quith – I lied . My Ph D was in theoretical physics. Same same : I still cannot add numbers. And BTW I resigned from mensa in disgust long ago. mensa reminds me too much of the pro-dems and the civics and balloons : full of self-inflated air and signifying nothing

  16. Oik says:


    Hear, f@#kin, hear!

    It was late, you’d no doubt had a couple of tipples, or perhaps you were just tired, peed off and wanted to get things off your chest before bed time but By Gad Sir, I endorse every bloody word of your most eloquent rant!

    I just hope we’re right!

  17. Troll says:

    “Dr” RTP is also a high-flying businessman and property speculator.

  18. Real Tax Payer says:

    @ Troll

    Wish I was !

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