Threats and opportunities – North Korea, striking dockers and investigative journalists

North Korea makes a big public show of activating nuclear facilities and threatening to raze Washington DC to the ground, while the US flies B2s around the planet via Pyongyang and grandly orders its flashy-if-it-works anti-missile system into Guam. And do the world’s stock markets collapse (Hong Kong’s is more worried about bird flu)? Does the gold price zoom?

It’s similar with that other epic struggle of evil totalitarian power against lovers of freedom and humanity – the Hong Kong dock workers’ strike. Although the odds are usually stacked against organized labour in the city, a nervous government seems to be pressuring the employers behind the scenes not to provoke wider public opinion. Consequently, active support for the workers remains limited to predictable political, student and other quarters. The chances of the Big Lychee’s valiant citizens bringing tycoon Li Ka-shing’s retail cartel to its knees remain sadly small… 

On a brighter note, the strike could help hasten the decline of our space-wasting, past-its-peak port. According to experts, the only growth area left these days is low-value transshipment cargo (containers switching ships en route from one distant place to another, as opposed to stuff going in and out of the Pearl River Delta region). Such activity can take place in other regional ports with few problems, and delays caused by a strike are just the thing to send business away for good. We should be so lucky. Now, how can we pull it off with tourists?

Meanwhile, investigative journalists around the world are sifting through a ton of leaked materials from the British Virgin Islands and elsewhere relating to offshore holdings of the (supposedly) mega-rich international elite. There are two differences with Wikileaks: the information is already proving far more fascinating; and there’s no Julian Assange sex-symbol/martyr/bore to hog the limelight.

Much depends on how squeamish the ICIJ are about releasing data; as CBC suggests, they need to be careful about naming names. Even so, we should be assured of some local angles, given that half of Hong Kong and a lot of well-connected folk over the border seem to have something registered or otherwise stashed away in BVI. Material on our local tycoons’ holding companies may not be especially interesting. Dirt on Beijing princelings’ ill-gotten gains would be, however. And wouldn’t it be utter delight if any past or serving Hong Kong government officials’ names crop up?

What a pleasant thought with which to declare the second segment of our second four-day weekend in a row open.


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9 Responses to Threats and opportunities – North Korea, striking dockers and investigative journalists

  1. I have boycotted Park N Shop ten years. Easy to do. It attracts large bottomed expat women pushing mega-trolleys full of BaconBits and Cheese Whizz. And people always cheat at the ten Ten Items Or Less queue.

    I was disturbed to see Richard The Brainless with father at the dockside. He looked pasty, bloated and out of it. Married life is obviously not suiting him. He is not eating his super-priced organic vegetables from TASTE either.

    The story of the Virgin Island began as a splash online at the SCMP about revelations concerning Hong Kong. But the telephone must have rung and they are now talking about the Marcos millions.

    I went to college with Ferdie Marcos Jr. Never got a ride in the Rolls after he pulled up for tutorials once a week. Cute boy if you like that sort of thing.

  2. darovia says:

    @ bela – Nice shot! All that leaky data out there and the top news is a diversion to those villans the Marcos’. Loyal CCparty members would never hide away money; how could they?

    Let’s hope the dockers emulate the UK motor workers and bring about the early demise of an industry that was doomed anyway. I really miss those thickos with heavy regional accents prattling on about ‘negoshiashons with managemunt’ – soooo black and white TV. I was a UK cop in those days and have the TGWU to thank for helping me put a deposit on my first house. the overtime pay was just great.

  3. Sojourner says:

    “I was a UK cop in those days …”

    Yeah, from the tone of your post it figures.

    Once filth, always filth.

  4. darovia says:

    @ Sojurner
    Yea – it sucks doesn’t it man – A cop with an opinon. Could there be anything worse? Oh yes, wait there’s Soujourner whose only posts have been trollers.

  5. Sojourner says:

    You, darovia, merely reinforce the truth of that quotation from Orwell that trollishly I cited yesterday:

    “… when I see an actual flesh-and-blood worker in conflict with his natural enemy, the policeman, I do not have to ask myself which side I am on.”

    Why do police inevitably evince the most ghastly petit-bourgeois sensibilities? There is nothing more naff and infra dig than making fun of working-class accents.

  6. Real Tax Payer says:

    Reason I don’t start my own blog thing is that I find myself so much in thinking with Hemmers on this this Blog and its commentators (even, very grudgingly – Bela : who or what you are ….?)

    Frankly, Hemmers digests so much by 11.00 AM that I am diddled, and need at least a couple of hours to digest. Does Hemmers never have have an all -b night freak out and wake up stoned next morning on a business day? If so he must be superman ! Or else I need his wake-up tonic reciipie ( as per Bertie Woostster / Jeeves etc )

  7. Sojourner says:

    RTP, both you are Bela are mysterious entities …

    Hemmers rarely if ever posts on weekends and holidays. That must be when he recharges.

  8. Incredulous says:

    I have high hopes for this bird-flu – NO MORE LOCUSTS!

  9. Property Developer says:

    BVI are so yesterday, I much prefer Jersey, since if push comes to shove I can just hop over from my French hideaway.

    RTP, Bela is Dr George Adams, as should be pretty obvious to anyone who reads these comments. He’s been hammering away at Chinese racism, hypocrisy, intolerance, game-playing and general Exclusion of the Other for at least two decades, and must be delighted his views are slowly, if not entering the mainstream, at least gaining some traction.

    Hemlock’s bite is more assured after weekends/holidays, and he does occasionally sound as if he’s making heavy weather of digesting “news” items that he knows have already come round umpteen times. But even on an off day he’s worth ten SCUMPs in my book.

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