HK shock-scandal-outrage horrors hit pro-dems

As the show trial of Bo Xilai gets underway, Hong Kong reels in shock at its own latest revelations about corruption and abuse of power in high places – a disgrace we shall hereby name Cathay-gate (or Airbus-gate, or maybe even Boarding-gate). The ‘USP’ of this particular outrage is that it does not involve any government ministers or sleazy members of the tycoon-politician Liberal Party-type caste. Instead, the villains are lawmakers who are either loyal, clean-living pro-Beijing patriots imbued with correct ideas about learning from the masses, or saintly and conscientious pro-democrats willing to make any sacrifice to further the cause of representative government by and for the people. Why, there’s even a member of that nice sensible Professional Commons group in this list of infamy.

The scandal in brief: the legislators went on a dubious freebie to France on Cathay Pacific Airways, officially to hear briefings from aircraft supplier Airbus and to take part in the delivery of an A330-300. We are invited to believe that one of the world’s leading international airlines really needs Democratic Party leader Albert Ho to help it inspect its 37th A330. But of course there were also visits to restaurants and chateaux. And some of the attendees brought family members – family members, it goes without saying, not usually being invited along on real business trips.

Inevitably, the phrase ‘conflict of interest’ is being hurled around. It is no secret that Cathay wants to keep potential budget (‘value-based’) competitor JetStar out of the local market (so people like you and me have to pay more for flights), and that it wants a third runway to be built at Hong Kong Airport (to be paid for, if we have any cash left, by people like you and me). Air transport is a money-losing industry on the whole, and Cathay Pacific relies on government officials accepting the idea that its well-being and Hong Kong’s are intertwined. In short, if you were CX, you’d lobby politicians who are middle-of-the-road in terms of economic policy, too.

But how are the mighty fallen! Are we going to see Albert Ho loudly demanding that the Independent Commission Against Corruption investigate half the administration after this? Perhaps such muck-raking accusations will henceforth be confined to the more extreme revolutionary firebrands of the League of Social Democrats/People Power and the fragrant radical-chic figures of the Civic Party, none of whom were on Cathay’s technical briefing/freebie/junket in Paris. (Maybe that was the whole idea!)

Meanwhile, the South China Morning Post notes the fading away of the flying red dragon that has sort-of symbolized the Big Lychee for the last 10 years or so. Instead, the city is embracing a new branding in the form of the extremely exciting ‘Home HK’ logo. The dragon rejoiced in the dazzling blood-scarlet and yellow tones of the national and Communist Party flag. The ‘Home HK’ logo, on the other hand, is green and purple. These hues are –I feel bound to point out – the colours of the Suffragette movement that fought 100 years ago for… universal suffrage.

On the subject of equal rights, kudos to Prada for eschewing the use of their usual physically and mentally perfect specimens of masculinity as models in favour of a manic-depressive with severe learning difficulties. An example to us all.

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13 Responses to HK shock-scandal-outrage horrors hit pro-dems

  1. I think the Health and Welfare Committee’s fact-finding tour of the Tahiti Cunnilingus Camp was fully justified.

    The Prada man is more “HK Our Homo”.

    The Civic Party’s demands for bran and chamomile on everything was beyond even Cathay Pacific’s Business Class caterers.

  2. Tiu Fu Fong says:

    Off topic, but is Stanley Ho dead yet? Or have his daughters cryogenically frozen him to forestall testamentary disputes?

  3. reductio says:

    @Tiu Fu Fong

    Not off topic at all. I had heard that he had undergone extensive plastic surgery, received massive injections of sheep embryos and is now enjoying a new life as a Prada model.

  4. PCC says:

    Alas, the “dog on fire” is no more.

  5. maugrim says:

    Chateaux-gate is part of a wider problem in HK, rules that only ever apply to smaller potatoes. Perhaps if Fat Albert was wedged in Economy, next to the toilet being asked if he wanted ‘the meat or fish’ would I perhaps have a small amount of forgiveness. However, one sincerely doubts that Al had to endure such deprivations judging by the large box that accompanied his luggage. Was he by perchance asked to pay excess baggage costs?

    HK our home is precisely what we need. It should become a rallying point about quality of ife issues such as Mainland tourists, pollution etc. After all HK is our home isn’t it?

  6. Jon Dica says:

    Well, I guess it’s better than Korea Sparkling.

  7. Stephen says:

    Unlike our Politicians I mostly try to avoid flying with Cathay whenever I can. Just two weeks ago they want HK$700 more (short haul, back of the plane) than a perfectly decent competitor. Run by snooty Swire boys like Tony “Fuel swaps” Tyler and now his doppelganger Smarmy Slosar to people really buy in to this nonsense that this airline is good for Hong Kong or “Hong Kong our home”?

    We really do have the dumbest politicians god put eyes into. You have a Government on the ropes mired in sleaze and corruption and what do you do – go on a jolly ? If and it’s a big if I get a free and fair vote in 2017 I am currently clueless on whose name I would put my ‘X’ against!

    Hong Kong – Live it love it !

  8. Grog says:

    Since reunification, Beijing has given us three leaders who failed to measure up and through a litany of ill conceived policies managed to driven a wedge between Hong Kong people and the mainland.

    Instead of trying to manage the process, Beijing should just throw up its hands and say, “Oh for Christ’s sake, Hong Kong. You elect someone, then.”

    Seriously, could the governance of Hong Kong really be any worse with a democratically elected leader?

  9. Pornstar Wong says:

    Prada. Ha, ha, ha, ha. ROTFLMFAO etc.

  10. Peter says:

    “Beijing should just throw up its hands and say, “Oh for Christ’s sake, Hong Kong. You elect someone, then.””

    I get the feeling Beijing will end up doing something along those lines. I think they’re slowly accepting the idea of a semi open ballot that allows non radical pan-democrats in.

  11. Oneleggoalie says:

    Oneleg loves Cathay…for good reason…they are good…
    Oneleg loves to see people not good enough…like Fat Ho…reveal themselves…
    Finally…justice.

  12. probably says:

    Aanyone who thinks Cathay are bad just stop and think of BA. Last month had 2 connecting flights in 1 day. First one 6 hours late. Second one gave up after 3 hours of ‘technical problems’ on the ground and they put us in a hotel for the night. Lost a day of my life because of them.

  13. Bangkok Lurker says:

    Can it have escaped your attention that the colours chosen for the “Hong Kong our home” logo are identical with those of the Municipal Services Department’s streetside litter bins? How apt.

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