After last Sunday in Salisbury Road, the Hong Kong Police now bring you the Tuen Mun neighbourhood-revolt suppression and the Lan Kwai Fong Halloween anti-mask freak-out. The best explanation I’ve heard is that Beijing is demanding that protests be crushed ASAP, Mainland-style, and no-one in Hong Kong has the ability or willingness to point out how it won’t work here and instead make things worse.
Another theory is that Beijing is deliberately trying to create conditions that would justify sending the troops in. That sounds less likely, not to say idiotic – but the current cycle of ever-greater use of force points to that eventual outcome anyway.
The CCP’s Plenum has issued a vague statement about strengthening national security in Hong Kong…
Hong Kong-based China watcher Johnny Lau Yui-siu said he expected to see a clear shift in policy direction as Beijing looks to strengthen its control over Hong Kong.
“This is clearly suggesting a wide range of unprecedented controls that are going to be exerted over Hong Kong as Beijing has lost its patience for one country, two systems,” he said.
“The communique sends a strong political message that might see Hong Kong respond by introducing new legislation to restrict free speech online, outlaw abuse of the police and increase controls on campus,” he said.
Pretty much what many of us have assumed for some time. This will produce greater resistance within Hong Kong, test the local pro-establishment camp’s loyalty and provoke greater international criticism. To what lengths will the CCP go to avoid relatively simple changes that would give Hong Kong more responsive local government and confidence that it will not be subjected to more Mainlandization?
I declare the weekend open with some choice reading…
Atlantic does a profile of localist hero Edward Leung.
Reuters recalls that all politics and news are local, and produces a big report ‘Below Lion Rock’ on how Wong Tai Sin is faring in the protests.
A Water Revolution of a different sort: Zolima Citymag on the challenge and cultural meaning of swimming around the whole of Hong Kong Island.
SupChina’s introduction to Hong Kong independence – the Panda in the Room.
And in case you can’t get enough depressing stuff out the Plenum, the Globe and Mail on Xi Jinping’s creepy narcissistic religion-substitute national(ist) ethos: the Outline for the Implementation of the Moral Construction of Citizens in the New Era.
Mainlandization…yes, I think that’s been going on for quite a few years. Does anyone know the year they relaxed the mainland tourist quota coming into HK? There was all that government assurance several years ago about the MTR being able to handle the influx etc.
10 years ago? 8? I can’t remember. But the slow, steady invasion of mainlanders into HK has been sure, to be sure. That’s the way you bring Hong Kong into the amazing future.
You water them down bit by bit with good old fashioned feet on the ground…and on the MTR…on the bus…in your building…in your lift…under your feet…screaming in your lobby…ransacking your supermarket…looting your chemist…feverish…the mainland consumer.
It’s good for the economy, stupid!
“…Beijing is deliberately trying to create conditions that would justify sending the troops in.”
Why send in troops when you can (and have) quietly and smoothly integrate mainland agents into the PoPo anyway with all the plainclothes types wielding batons/guns and obscured ID/badge numbers? The only thing they need to do now is have sectional commissars (pulled from PAP ranks) to ensure frontline coppers are showing steely resolve, inflicting maximum pain and not developing any sense of empathy, all a la Soviet Army crossing the Volga River. Anyone questioning orders will be shot.
@ PaperCuts: “You water them down bit by bit with good old fashioned feet on the ground…and on the MTR…on the bus…in your building…in your lift…under your feet…screaming in your lobby…ransacking your supermarket…looting your chemist…feverish…the mainland consumer.”
Clearly your do not like Mainland people. I am not sure where on the planet your parents and grandparents spawned new human beings. If you are not Chinese, though, I think the label “racist” might apply – “screaming in your lobby…ransacking your supermarket…looting your chemist”. That is pretty ingrained resentment. I know lots of Mainland Chinese people, and as with all races a few are twats, but the overwhelming majority are OK. Of the latter, some are brilliant and I really look forward to being in the same room as them and having some beer and banter.
I am now going to play Dionne Warwick’s version of Jackie DeShannon’s “What the world needs now is love”. I suggest your give it a go, although you might want ignore the subtitles as quite a few of the words are misspelled: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2cW8Alo_5uI
Around 6-7 years ago, I had a very well-to-do acquaintance, who was a local Hong Konger at the CEO-level who worked in finance. I used to join him over the weekened to mentor kids from impoverished households which, as a side note, mainly came from public housing with heads-of-household being single mothers who had immigrated from Mainland China.
He was prone to discussing politics and, as a lot of our mentorship activities happened to occur right around the Shatin / Fanling MTR areas at a time when parallel trading was a hot topic, we would often broach the topic.
While my acquaintenance would admit that the problematic nature of hordes of Mainland Chinese parallel traders buying out entire pharmacies on a near-daily basis, he was adamant that the solution was logistical in nature, advocating that Hong Kong simply needed more supply to satisfy the demand.
While he may have been right in a theoretical sense (for example, the entireity of Fanling–township, uncultivated land, and all–could be devoted to milk powder distribution for Mainland Chinese consumers), his thinking seems emblematic of the kinds of solutions the city’s “elite” have since been proposing to our city’s societial problems, up to and including one of the topics of today’s blog, the police tear-gassing of a protest about police tear-gassing.
He and his ilk are, unfortunately, the ones pulling the city’s strings.
Sigh… these days are truly becoming more and more depressing…
You’re right Reactor #4…what Hong Kong needs now is more…more mainlanders pawing over more meaningless junk and jamming it into more suitcases.
That’d go down a treat.
Meanwhile, you feel free to go chat with as many of them as you like, with your politically correct quackery.
@MarkLane – setting up more pharmacies in Fanling to supply the mainland, instead of asking why Chinese people don’t trust their own country’s food hygiene, would be solving the symptom instead of the problem. Which is exactly what the Hong Kong government is doing now in trying to crush the current protests, instead of asking why a population which was generally law-abiding and contented a few months ago now hates the police with a passion.
And incidentally, mainlanders may not openly oppose their government, but the fact that so many of them come to Hong Kong to buy baby milk shows a level of distrust in the system which is actually a hopeful sign when you think about it.
The High Court will issue a narrow judgement focused on
* the unmasking regulation-making power procedures to be adopted in the normal course without any political assessment by the Government; and
* the usual post-regulation-making procedure of placing the regulation before LegCo; and
*LegCo is engaged retrospectively as they always have been
@Private Beach: Not only do Mainlanders not trust their own food safety standards, they apparently have so little trust in their regular import channels that they prefer merchandise smuggled in by suitcase-wheeling aunties. In a normal country, Mannings or somebody would get an import license and truck the stuff over the border in bulk, but as soon as they do that, it’s no longer desirable.
“Which is exactly what the Hong Kong government is doing now in trying to crush the current protests, instead of asking why a population which was generally law-abiding and contented a few months ago now hates the police with a passion.”
There’s no point in them asking when their handlers have already decided that the only acceptable answer is “because you haven’t properly indoctrinated your children”.
Beijing has evidently decided that this will be the last generation to entertain seditious thoughts.
And they’re talking of tweaking the method for selecting the Chief Executive (most likely in a more authoritarian direction) because they’ve probably also decided that the problem was that the tycoons weren’t loyal enough. If the elites hadn’t gone all squishy on the extradition bill, the population wouldn’t have been encouraged to rebel.
@PaperCuts: You’re referring to the Individual Visit Scheme (IVS)? That was introduced in 2003 – ostensibly to give Hong Kong’s depressed economy at the time a boost.
The real reason, I suspect, was to further integrate Hong Kong with China.
This is when it started IMHO. Can’t decide whether it was to further integration or a genuine desire to help out. Either way, once the tycoons realised there was a never ending supply of money coming down it was obvious they would push for more, more, more mainlanders. As our ‘leaders’ instinctively genuflect before these great and good, it was a done deal. If it wasn’t for the demos it would have just kept going. As it is, Causeway Bay, ground zero for the mainland hordes, has been refreshingly empty. Golden Shower week passed without me losing it on the MTR, there was so little wheelie luggage banging into me. Alan Z is looking pissed, and there was a lack of tacky advertsing for Halloween nonsense, so not all bad.
“I know lots of Mainland Chinese people, and as with all races a few are twats, but the overwhelming majority are OK. Of the latter, some are brilliant and I really look forward to being in the same room as them and having some beer and banter.”
Where are they? Are they only fair weather friends?
Sending coals in the middle of a snowstorm is well-appreciated. Are they sending? Or will they send more PLA masking as HKPF?
Only in times of trials will somebody really be labeled as OK. Because most of the time, when facing stiff opposition people will crumble. Hong Kongers haven’t, that’s why they are admired and supported the world over.
This post’s headline could be used to describe the police’s actions on the two following days after you wrote it! And I have a feeling the police will being going nuts some more in the upcoming days and weeks; this since they really appear to be above the law these days and the powers that be — along with certain SCMP headline writesr — absolutely not “getting” that a good part of the violence is caused and effected by them.
I think one of reactor #4’s drinking buddies bit a dude’s ear off last night.
Now before reactor #4 curls into the fetal position stammering about politically incorrect non-sanctioned vocabulary thought crimes I should be blunt:
Nobody is impugning billions of mainalnd Chinese as being all of one character…what’s being discussed is the clear policy *someone* saw fit to implement several years ago whereby Hong Kong culture was flooded with non Hong Kong culture in a torrent of social engineering designed to get exactly what we have on the streets today.
China says it’s policy is to respect, honour and handle with care the special individuality of Hong Kong. That’s the party line. But if that’s true, what moron thought it would be A-OK and a great idea to swamp the local population with untold numbers of individuals who have no comprehension, respect for or understanding of the uniqueness and delicate nature of Hong Kong culture at this specific time in history?
Even an intellectually challenged chimp would be able to foresee the social danger in flooding and swamping an already crammed, highly stressed city.
So who opened the gates?