Can we call it ‘FannyGate’ yet?

The South China Morning Post probes deeper into yesterday’s curious affair of Fanny Law and the Swedish scientists – or at least into Fanny’s explanation of how nothing happened. The ex-bureaucrat-turned-Beijing loyalist and Science Park figurehead says she decided to go to the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm before, and in preparation for, her sudden visit to its Lau Wai-ming Reparative Medicine outpost here.

The SCMP reports this straight, as if it clears everything up. But readers who are sensitive to this sort of thing might detect a hint of that ‘slightly-hurt overly-elaborate irrelevant-details’ tone perfected by many generations of kids caught with hands in cookie jars. There is no word on why the Swedes spoke out to defend their academic freedom, or why Chief Executive Carrie Lam should feel a need to reassure them.

So observers wondering what is happening must rely on their imaginations, which as we all know can get a little sordid.

For example, this comment mentions former CE CY Leung’s kid getting a research fellowship at the Institute in Sweden in 2014, and a position in the same field recently being offered by the Hong Kong branch (expired job advertised here and elsewhere). The two pieces of information mean nothing, of course, but someone with a nasty suspicious mind might wonder if an attempt to influence a hiring decision took place.

If we focus our minds on innocent, wholesome, non-sordid possibilities, we can envisage a misunderstanding, or some parochial Science Park bureaucratic empire-building face thing – in other words, nothing happened. Except something provoked the normally mild-mannered Swedes into their comments about research independence, which prompted reassurance from none other than the Chief Executive. Try as we might to think otherwise, something did happen.

It looks as if the Hong Kong, Beijing-supporting, self-important, money-backed, tycoon-bureaucrat nexus – perhaps influenced by Mainland forces – might have found that its rules-don’t-apply-to-us culture rubs Scandinavians up the wrong way. But presumably the Swedes need the money. Chances are that this affair will now quietly fade away, and we will never really know.

Meanwhile, you still have several days left to send your Christmas cards off to Patrick Ho in jail in New York.


This entry was posted in Blog. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Can we call it ‘FannyGate’ yet?

  1. reductio says:

    Exactly. If Fanny Law had just rocked up to the Institute with no prior warning for a look-see then the most the Swede’s would have said is “Bad manners Fanny. Please give us notice next time so we can have the kettle on, get the toilet cleaned and we can give you the tour.”

    Something fishy indeed. Unlike the SCMP, a real paper would’ve had a couple of reporters out to Stockholm by now digging for dirt.

  2. Stephen says:

    Fanny certainly has form. Wasn’t there a stink at the ICAC and when she was tag teaming with King Arthur on education ? Perhaps it’s time to put her out of her misery – NPC perhaps ?

  3. Big Al says:

    It is noteworthy, I believe, that none of the reporting has yet used the word “merely” in connection with Ms Law’s visit to Sweeden, e.g. “Ms Law was merely visiting the Karolinska Institute on a pre-arranged trip”. This is a word that is always used when someone has been caught red-handed and is desperately trying to weasel their way out.

  4. Docta G says:

    As a general rule, you must have noticed that anyone in Government now thinks they can do anything they like.And largely they can and do.

    As for Fatty Ho, he will probably be excused ‘tossing the salad’, the traditional initiation for new inmates of US jails. I mean, who would want his tongue up one’s backside? Although he must be good at it, given his past life in Hong Kong Government and as Peking bagman.

    Rumour has it that Fatty is employing the Darlie Defence. Giving money to black men can’t be bad, particularly if it is good honest laundered Chinese money. It makes black men smile the Darlie smile. Sadly, the FBI and Justice think differently.

  5. Joe Blow says:

    Just send your ‘good honest laundered Chinese money’ to the Wong’s Brothers Laundry Store at the far end of Temple Street, where the hos hang out. Motto: ‘Two Wongs can make it White’.

    Did you know that there is no temple in Temple Street ? Just like there is no corn in corned beef.

  6. Din Gao says:

    @Joe Blow
    Wrong! There are actually five temples within the Tin Hau Temple complex slap bang wallop in the middle of Temple Street (not named after the infamous corrupt and jailed Yaumati cop of the same name but after – surprise, surprise – the temple) at its junction with Public Square Street.

  7. Din Gao says:

    HKSTP :

    Caveat stakeholders!


    Connect stakeholders, facilitate knowledge transfer and nurture talents to accelerate technological innovation and commercialization.


    We are proactive in engaging our stakeholders. We understand their needs and will take the initiative to better serve them to create a brighter future for all.

Comments are closed.