The South China Morning Post’s Peter Guy notes a HK Free Press/Apple Daily report on a lame government award purporting to recognize tech-innovation-hub-start-up-buzzword-excellence. The winners included companies that had essentially borrowed others’ work. The articles point out that the government committee judging entries was headed by a tycoon’s son, and Guy traces the ‘intellectual corruption’ of the process back to a system dedicated to maintaining ‘property-cartel-dominated serfdom’. Correctly, most right-minded people would say.
The use of tycoons’ kids to pretend to chair pointless public boards is even more desperately unoriginal than the award-winning tech entrepreneurs’ innovations. Critics see such appointments to such bodies as ‘rewards’ for loyalty. This may be the case with the grovelling status-seeking commoners co-opted by the government this way. But for plutocrat-scions, it is a way for officials to bind them publicly to an unpopular administration. Daddy’s company has investments on the Mainland, so – even if the young tycoons are aware enough to realize what’s happening – they can’t refuse.
Whether it is seducing social-climbers with baubles, or inducing business figures to identify themselves with the government, the public consultation system is perhaps no longer part of the colonial-era trick known as the ‘administrative absorption of politics’. It no longer pretends to be bringing external opinion or advice into the power structure. It has lapsed into what Guy calls ‘promotional stunts to distract young people from the real problem’ – the aforementioned property-cartel-serfdom.
This is reflected in the very concept, structure and style of these ICT Start-Up Awards, which have ‘intellectual corruption’, not to say laziness, written all over them. The officials organizing the thing have put a lot of effort, meetings and expenses into making something that looks like a tech competition. Meanwhile, over at the Welfare department, they’re chucking a bit of cash around to make it look like they care about poverty. This could be a long list. The Legislative Council election we are invited to take so seriously simply looks like a poll for a lawmaking body. Outside a local restaurant, the only hint of someone not taking part in a charade is the pet-owner looking for a lost parrot…
While Hong Kong is still more or less decently enough administered day to day, its actual government seems to be a giant exercise in pretending to recognize problems and pretending to do something about them, while pointedly ignoring anything and everything going wrong all around us. To the extent that the bureaucracy is now putting up posters pushing its new soma hotline…
But surely the big story is the National Shame of the Olympics Grand Capitalist Stitch-Up and Unequal Medals Table.
And even our Sarah fell off her bike. Years of putting my leg over ensures I am always firm in the saddle.
The Mainland Chinese are now miserable fat neo-capitalist bastards, incapable of athleticism because they no longer ride bicycles in sufficient number.
Either that or the dog penis extract deer antler bear claw capsules are now being detected.
It’s an interesting phenomenon that public services continue in a relatively efficient manner despite the ongoing nonsense at the upper levels. Which begs the question why do need all these policy secretaries and their lackeys.
Speaking of public service announcements, whatever happened to “the Queen of Voice-Overs” John Culkin ?
Today’s headline in the SCMP was “CHINA WINS VOLLEYBALL” (but it should be in a waaay bigger font size). In the same rag, on a different page we are told that young, hip Chinese aren’t actually bothered about gold medals, but instead are captivated by athletes who embody a funky, fun attitude.
Yeah, right. And the Indonesians are blowing up Chinese fishing boats. Not a good week for the dictatorship of the proletariat.