HK government continues spring-cleaning

Just time for Hong Kong to squeeze in a little more Mainlandization before the New Year festivities.

A court rules that civil servants can bar a candidate from the ballot provided their telepathic induction is augmented with ‘cogent, clear and compelling’ evidence that the individual would not uphold the Basic Law. The judge also says the would-be candidates should have a reasonable opportunity to respond. This leaves a little wiggle-room for future cases, but misses the fundamental question of whether to disagree with a law is the same as planning not to uphold it.

Another court rejects an attempt by Occupy leaders to throw out ‘incitement to incite public nuisance’ charges against them. This is probably no bad thing. The prosecutions are clearly political and aimed at high-profile individuals, and the action has been dragged out for years; the more ludicrous the charges, the more despotic the government looks. If Beijing was smart, its officials would nudge the local administration into dropping this no-win mess. Depending on final verdicts/sentences, either the government or the judiciary must come out of this with (further) tarnished reputations.

Meanwhile, prosecutors seek to add more incitement charges in the cases against another group of activists.

The never-ending stream of legal cases aimed at punishing opposition or rigging elections is numbing – this is what the whole thing looks like.

The deterioration of rule of law is one-way, and local officials and judges with a conscience are ultimately powerless to resist it – Beijing is now prepared to override any administrative or legal obstacles through Basic Law ‘interpretation’ or other devices.

One big line to cross will be the criminalization of opinion, whether through Article 23 national security laws or some sort of Beijing edict. It would start with a ban on calls for Hong Kong independence, then extend to calls for the overthrow of the Communist Party. Such restriction of freedom of expression (currently limited to flag-desecration and imminent national anthem laws) would imply formal censorship of some sort.

Also inevitable: measures to curb the influence of foreign judges in Hong Kong courts, which is already coming in Macau. It’s probably only a matter of time before lawyers who defend opposition figures start coming under greater pressure.

The suppression has already started. The authorities are penalizing stock analysts for disrespectful opinions of Mainland companies, and short-sellers say they are avoiding Hong Kong because of fears for their safety (as are, I hear, some corporate investigators). First they came for the scumbags, and I did not speak out…

To prepare for a gloomy Dog Year, I foresee tomorrow probably being a goof-off, so declare the four-day weekend a five-day one – and open.

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7 Responses to HK government continues spring-cleaning

  1. Paul Lewis says:

    Has anyone ever tried to register the Communist Party of Hong Kong?
    How about the Communist Party of Kowloon, but as a gathering of people holding a party with loud music and drinks? Non-political.
    The Chinese Communist Party does not hold a monopoly on the name worldwide.

    I see that is a valid website

  2. Chinese Netizen says:

    Have a nice dog meat hot pot in honour of the new year, man’s best friend and the fact that HKSAR is, in fact, fully absorbed.

  3. HillnotPeak says:

    Excellent idea Paul, just registered and in my name.
    After CNY will make a website for the comrades. I will invite Carrie and the DAB aunties and uncles for the first click. Champagne!

  4. Chinese Netizen says:

    Don’t forget or

    or .org/.biz/.xxx etc etc etc

  5. You are so prejudiced and your assumptions are so biased, you cannot see clearly.

    That would be one reading of you but of course what you write is an agenda-driven provocation. You can’t be that addle-brained in reality for you would now be in a home for Alzheimer’s victims. Soho isn’t quite that yet but of course is very close.

    Deep down I think your admire the Communists. Nowadays they are just good capitalists with real clout. But they don’t want any smelly White men any more.

    Live with it.

    After having the pleasure of seeing Hong Kong in a capitalist Hell for thirty years, it will be marvellous to see these spineless opportunists drown in a sort of off-Capitalism run by very very off-Communists. The very idea is hilarious. Why not enjoy it instead of carping constantly about what you call “Mainlandization”?

    Lighten up, baby.

    Pep, pep!

  6. Knownot says:

    The Liaison Office requested some uniformed groups to . . .

    If you’re from the UK
    You will say
    The goose-step gives the impression
    Of aggression:
    The marching-style of Russia
    Or of Prussia;
    Proud, ostentatious,
    And pugnacious.

    Chinese army and police
    Go like geese.
    Hong Kong did not use to.
    Should we goose, too?

    No! Liaison has an office here —
    Don’t interfere!
    A patriot would say,
    The colonial way.
    But the way the British stepped
    Should be kept:
    That march is appropriate —
    Quiet, moderate;
    Let us hope, and say,
    The Hong Kong way.

  7. Joe Blow says:

    Today, the first day of New Year in Cheena, and a lovely warm sunny day it was too, I took my annual walk around my old stomping ground, Central: never have I seen so many boarded up shop fronts in the center of the megapolis that is Hong Kong. And coming from CWB, that is saying something. In the triangle of Wellington Street, Wyndham Street and, what used to be called Lan Kwai Fong, every third shopfront was shuttered, and not just because of the holidays. The area is as dead as a romantic night with Carrie Lam.
    Oh well: we still have CWB.

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