It is instructive to watch the Hong Kong government in damage limitation and disaster-recovery mode. See a real live democratic deficit in action, up close! More to the point, you get to find out just how mediocre Beijing’s chosen local leader-puppets are.
For a vivid picture of a top official out of his depth, read this account* of yesterday’s Legislative Council questioning of Security Secretary ex-cop John Lee. Any chance of the ever-unlovable Secretary for Justice Theresa Cheng being subjected to a similar grilling?
Sitting atop this mess, of course, is figurehead Chief Executive Carrie Lam – probably still puzzled and bemused about why there is so much fuss and why everything seems to be going wrong. At a gathering to apologize to supposed supporters, Federation of Trade Unions lawmaker Alice Mak unleashed a profanity-laced tirade at her, and Regina Ip stormed out. But Carrie has not only blithely dumped loyalist shoe-shiners in it. Unlike her hapless predecessors, she has even managed to bolster Taiwan’s pro-independence sentiment. This is almost calamity as performance art.
In a halfway smart move, the administration has rushed to sweep some contentious issues under the carpet. Rather than try to ram through the National Anthem (Compulsory Adoration) Ordinance in the last remaining weeks of this legislative year, officials are postponing it to after October – when we’ll all be feeling much better, won’t we? And they’re pushing back the request for a quick half-billion or whatever to fund some Lantau Mega-Reclamation Boondoggle Scam preliminary initial outline overview planning plan.
This is all in addition to her (amply noted elsewhere) stunning They Said It Could Not Be Done achievement in exceeding CY Leung’s alienation of the city’s entire younger and educated (and a lot of the rest) population.
Based on previous experience, Beijing’s reaction to all this will be to find even less competent people and force them even more strongly to do even more stupid things. If this is possible.
*Also from Kong Tsung-gan, how the Extradition Insurrection (what’s this historic moment going to be called?) happened after five years in the making.