Jack Ma’s organ acts up again

While it would be an exaggeration to say that the South China Morning Post never ceases to amaze, the paper can sometimes raise eyebrows. The Mysterious Case of the Vanishing Shirley Yam Column last week took readers aback – not least because ultra-sensitive apparent dirt on Xi Jinping’s inner circle made it into print in the first place, before being hastily airbrushed out of existence.

And yesterday we had a forthright denunciation of the Chinese Communist Party’s rewriting of Hong Kong (and other) history, featuring such quotable snippets as…

Beijing treats us like we have Stockholm syndrome, like because we don’t buy into the nation’s collective self-pity, we are somehow “stalling the process of decolonialisation”.


You can tell us foreign elements organised Occupy Central, or try to pretend five of our publishers were never arbitrarily spirited away to the mainland. But every time you erase another line of our past, you push us another mile away.

The column is a response to one in the SCMP by a Mainland zombie-academic (which was so insulting and coarse that its own appearance in the paper could almost be interpreted as anti-Beijing black propaganda).

The (pinyin-named) author’s argument is perhaps awkward. For example, he or she sees a straight equivalence between the CCP and colonial historical/fictional narratives, and (let’s say) probably overstates the role of Song- and Qing-era local resistance against foreign invaders in forming modern Hong Kong.

But the article also reflects much of the broader uncertainty and discussion about Hong Kong’s identity vis-à-vis the Mainland/China/the CCP. It particularly makes sense in the context of the city’s defiance and reaction against Mainlandization and the obnoxiousness and belligerence of the CCP.

In short, it is a ‘Localist’ op-ed piece – which, in the SCMP, is a bit of a surprise.


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6 Responses to Jack Ma’s organ acts up again

  1. Magnus Pym says:

    This is trivia. You missed the Brightoil scandal featured in the BBC and absent from the SCMP.

    The Vietnamese are almost at war with China, have been warned off oil and gas exploration by a Hong Kong registered company owned by influential Mainland cadres.

    You can’t see everything I guess.

    Pip, pip!

  2. LRE says:

    I’m betting Shen Jian is a nom-de-plume referring to this rather apposite political tract by Xun Yue.
    Shen’s done a couple before, all tepidly localist in aspect, but hats off to Tian Feilong (a cultural attaché with all the charm of Les Patterson with none of the comedy) for goading him into full-blown revolution!

  3. Walter De Havilland says:

    It’s a classic ‘confuse them tactics’ to make us believe the SCMP is pro- free speech. Yet, its true intent is revealed in small ways. For example, it has shut comments on pieces featuring convicted criminal Donald Tsang. Also, the coverage of LAU Wong-fat’s death strangely omits details of alleged criminal background.

  4. FOARP says:

    Have to agree with Walter above – we saw all this with English-language Global Times and other outlets that the CCP wanted people to be interested in. First comes the risque pieces designed to lure folk in, then comes the hard-core propaganda.

  5. Jeff says:

    Yeah but only an imbecile without any critical thinking skills would swallow propaganda articles after being lured in by more sensible articles such as the Shen Jia article. The only people who would get confused would be babbling muppets.

  6. Hank Morgan says:

    Nice try SCMP, running ad for The Story of Liu Xiaobo on liberal US media site … and after a comprehensive story “China crams spyware …” on ElReg … expect the red ants to show up there too.

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