Where the deplorables love immigrants

The Trump administration wants to deport undocumented ‘Dreamers’, and Europeans are reportedly fleeing the UK ahead of Brexit. Liberals in these countries resist by embracing immigrants as hard-working and contributors to cultural vibrancy. Yet phenomena like Trump and Brexit are partly popular reactions against immigration – or against the ruling sophisticates who are too politically correct or driven by economics to admit that influxes of newcomers can damage life for ordinary people in host communities.

In Hong Kong, we do not have quite the same split between progressive schooled urbanites and resentful reactionary dimwits. Our ruling order has a mission to subdue enlightened pluralism and install harmony, deference and obedience. One of its methods is to displace or dilute the uppity indigenous population with mostly poorer and supposedly malleable newcomers from the Mainland.

So we have a situation where the liberal, critical-thinking, coastal smart-asses are anti-immigration, and the intolerant and authoritarian closed-minded forces are determined to cram more huddled masses from the Chinese hinterland into the city. No surprise that environmental activists Green Sense go ignored when they point out the obvious link between Hong Kong’s housing crisis and the continuous inflow of migrants. (Green Sense would be better off pointing out that the constant stream of Mainland arrivals also feeds nativist and pro-independence sentiment.)

However, Beijing is not only trying to tighten its grip on Hong Kong through long-term demographic engineering. It wants the continued support of co-opted octogenarian property tycoons whose cartels squeeze the domestic economy. That’s why you can forget all this disruptive innovative/creative tech industry stuff – we have vested interests to protect.

By allowing in more Mainlanders while artificially restricting the supply of affordable housing, the Hong Kong government forces more people into private-sector accommodation. At the lower end, this pushes up rents in nasty sub-divided apartments and similar accommodation. But the pressure on per-square-foot housing prices obviously trickles up into other market segments, hence the HK$8,500-a-month nano-flats at Shouson Hill, and ever-rising rents generally.

So Mainland immigrants make our population more loyal and patriotic – and help to push up Beijing-shoe-shining landlords’ profits. Talk about a win-win!


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9 Responses to Where the deplorables love immigrants

  1. Our..we…???

    Seems like you is the refugee, Honkie.

    Honey chile, you white folk just ain’t here no more.

    Have some chicken and grits and shut your cracker ass up.

  2. Our..we…???

    Seems like you is the refugee, Honkie.

    Honey chile, you white folk just ain’t here no more.

    Have some chicken and grits and shut your cracker ass up.

  3. Reader says:

    As a proud liberal, critical-thinking, coastal smart-ass, I resent being labelled ‘anti-immigration’. When the government (HK or China, take your pick) does not act for the people, brooks no meaningful discussion, and damns the opposition as the CIA-backed ‘other’, we leftards band together to oppose, oppose, oppose. Yes, it’s a bit distasteful to be lumped in with nativist racists (against their racial brothers, weirdly), but what choice do we have?

  4. Headache says:

    I don’t know how any sane person remains positive around here, excepting of course those with their snouts in the trough.

  5. @Reader – I think the true weirdness lies in the Chinese government’s racist assumption that all ethnic Chinese are brothers and should (indeed must) therefore think alike regardless of the very different cultures in which they were raised. I don’t think anyone (even the most ardent localists) is claiming that Hong Kong should not accept any immigrants at all, only that Hong Kong should control who comes in rather than having the influx dumped on us by the CCP – the most famous unwanted example being the jerk who was imprisoned then deported for starting a fatal fire in the Immigration Department, only to reappear here after the handover.

  6. Reader says:

    @Old Newcomer – “Chinese government’s racist assumption” – clearly so.
    But plenty of localists spit nasty generalisations against ‘all’ mainlanders, in a way that is virulently racist in tone, even if they are separated only by a couple of generations of Hong Kong’s ‘very different’ culture.

  7. Stanley Lieber says:

    The epithets may differ, e.g., racist, homophobic, misogynistic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, anti-Chinese, climate change denier, etc., but the intent is always the same: to shut down free speech.

    Fuck ’em.

  8. Saikungsucker says:

    Your conclusion is really depressing. It is in the interests of anyone who owns a property in Hong Kong to keep the house and rental prices rising, up and up, forever. If that means cramming more and more mainlanders into less and less space, so what, as long as prices go up.

    That explains the attitude of much of Hong Kong people towards the jailed young democrats, the Occupy movement in general, and anything that challenges Beijing’s support of the drooling vested interests here. Anything that is good for the people will most likely be bad for the property prices, and therefore bad for the half of Hong Kong that owns property.

    Hard to expect people to pay for their own bullet, especially in a money and property obsessed place like this. So it is very much a win-win for the HK government. Sigh …

    ps. I sincerely hope Nina Simone is not the reincarnation of Bella. That would be too much.

  9. LRE says:

    Credit where credit’s due: the CPC has been a positive boon to Mainland tech firms: Alibaba, Weibo/WeChat, Baidu, Taobao, Tencent, Xiaomi — you name them: they all would have failed miserably as the cheap, less functional knock-offs they started as or been sued to death as such had it not been for the CPC’s insistence on maintaining control and censorship over everything internet/communication, thus ensuring they can properly monitor and stop any trouble from the all-round top arch-nemesis of the CPC: Chinese people.

    @Reader & Old Newcomer:
    Weird though it seems, I think race is a red herring in the “we hate mainlanders” debate — numbers (and nuisance levels) are everything. For example, I suspect a least one small area of SOHO has swung away from “bloody Mainlanders … mumble mutter” and plumped in favour of “bloody Koreans … mumble mutter”.

    If 60 million Brazilian “tourists*” flocked to Hong Kong every year, with a further x hundred thousand poorly-educated allowed to stay for good, the whole of Hong Kong would be fervently anti-Brazilian. It’s not really who but where they are that’s the issue: Hong Kongers are — in this particular instance — volumist rather racist.

    Ask any of the most fervent “send ’em all back, bloody mainlanders” crew where their parents or grandparents are from — the vast majority of Hong Kongers are 1st or 2nd generation mainlanders. If you’re feeling savage, suggest they start the purges at home, with mum/grandma. They will assure you that this is obviously “not the same thing at all”.

    * The problem is exacerbated by the HKSAR Government’s complete refusal to face facts and categorise mainland visitors accurately and usefully — many (most?) of the mainlanders the government class as “tourists” should more truthfully be recategorised as “smugglers” — they are not here for Hong Kong in any way other than the 20%-tax-free luxury goods, electronics, watches, jewellery, Chinese medicine, delicacies and — let’s not forget the old favourite — baby milk formula that doesn’t kill babies (apparently some mainland technological innovations are not as desirable as the Self Censored Morning Post would have us believe).

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