Beijing woos pro-dems (not pretty)

It seems at least someone in Hong Kong made use of the Ashley Madison website. The city’s Democratic Party recently hooked up with Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office deputy director Feng Wei for a discreet no-strings bout of constructive exchange of views in a spirit of mutual respect.

To opposition militants, this is befriending the devil. To pragmatists, it would be pointless to pass up an opportunity to make the pro-dems’ case to a Mainland official. True – with elections coming, they need to be mindful of Beijing efforts to divide and weaken the pan-dem camp. But that could go both ways. The HKMAO has a tradition of rivalry with the SCMP-BJ-seekslocally based Liaison Office, which is openly acting as Chief Executive CY Leung’s puppet-master and sees the whole opposition as untouchable lepers.

To Beijing, differentiating between the militants and the pragmatists might not be a calculated (indeed predictable) ploy to split the pro-dems so much as an attempt to come to terms with the existing divide in the camp. At one end of the pan-dem spectrum, groups like the LSD and People Power openly call for the overthrow of the Communist regime. At the other end, the DP and fellow moderates can live with the one-party state so long as it grants Hong Kong autonomy and democracy. While full democracy is clearly incompatible with one-party rule, the DP seem pretty reasonable compared with a younger generation of Hong Kong radicals, who disown ‘China’ – whoever runs the place – and claim the city to be sovereign. Even if the Liaison Office sees all pan-dems equally as an enemy to be crushed, the HKMAO could have cause to be more subtle.

‘Subtle’ by their standards, that is. Just in case DP leaders like Emily Lau risk are not sufficiently seduced by the HKMAO’s come-ons and promises of cuddly warmth and intimacy, along comes pro-Beijing academic Lau Siu-kai with his own blandishments. He says the Central Government would like the DP to be a ‘loyal opposition’. This he defines as a group that is ‘allowed to have contrary views on many issues’ provided it accepts the Communist one-party structure. Who can resist such sweet talk?

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7 Responses to Beijing woos pro-dems (not pretty)

  1. Nimby says:

    Plenty of endorphin addicted professional victims on both sides of the great chasm. Anyone rational on either side must almost as much scared of the people standing next to them as they are of “opposition”. Some in People Power are about as rabid as the Military Police near Guilin who beat me silly for not looking “Chinese”.

    http://www.newrepublic.com/article/122669/injustice-collectors-how-understand-vester-flanagans-manifesto

    We get to have several weeks of CCP’s twisted version of injustice rage which will go on well after 03 Sept. One hopes they are not the “violent” type, but CCP history indicates otherwise.

  2. Maugrim says:

    They can’t help themselves: ““If Chinese authorities are to be believed, we finally know the cause of the country’s stock market woes: a single reporter. In a video segment aired by China’s state television broadcaster, journalist Wang Xiaolu confessed to fabricating a “sensationalized” story about the stock market and claimed responsibility for having “caused panic and disorder” among China’s investors”

    Well, that clears that up then.

  3. Gin Soaked Boy says:

    I don’t think the Democrats or any of the pro-dems for that matter, need the help of Beijing to split. They are more than capable of splitting themselves.

  4. There are some (a few) people in the pro-establishment camp that, politics aside, one could imagine chatting to amicably over a beer. Then there are those who for some reason induce instant loathing; for me, Lau Siu-kai belongs with CY Leung, Rimsky Yuen, and Greg So in the latter group.

  5. Yoyo the yodeling yokel from Yonkers says:

    @Outside: Rimsky Yuen doesn’t drink beer. He drinks Jolly Shandy.

  6. pie-chucker says:

    @ Yoyo: maybe you’ve nailed it. Toadying with neighbours up north is, eg

    “A rational type at heart, but he/she has never refused a Jolly Shandy.”

  7. @Yoyo – that pretty much confirms my view of him.

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