This week’s episode of Banana Republic was brought to you by: Teresa Cheng killing a private prosecution by pro-dem Ted Hui for the second time this week; and plain-clothes police grabbing a young woman off the street and into an unmarked car – apparently for suspected ‘access to a computer with dishonest intent’.
How things have changed. Would you believe there was a time when recently-and-frequently-arrested pro-democracy media boss Jimmy Lai served as a high-calibre speaker at a Hong Kong Police senior command course? (Scroll down to bottom story – just above the ‘copyright 1997’ thing.) The cops also invited Democrat James To and Amnesty International. What a difference the CCP makes.
By accident this morning, I see Nury Vittachi’s so-ultra-left-it’s-far-right theorising about the CIA supporting the protest movement in Thailand. For as long as I can remember, Thailand’s monarchist-military regimes have, if anything, been propped up by the US. Why would the CIA try to engineer regime change there? Also, for as long as anyone can remember, those regimes have been corrupt and oppressive, extracting wealth from the population through such scams as loan-sharking to rice farmers (to take a small example). It’s not beyond the realms of possibility that the people are angry and have made their own minds up that their country should be run more fairly.
It’s hard enough to understand why self-styled Marxist tankies find themselves siding with dictatorships. How does a columnist in a Hong Kong paper fall into such intellectual, logical and moral confusion that he thinks the victims of King ‘poodles and babes’ Vajiralongkorn and his generals’ misrule are in the wrong? What does he get into next – QAnon?
A variety of (sounder) reading material to wrap the week up…
Sinocism has republished John Garnaut’s speech on ideology in Xi Jinping’s China. If you’ve never read it, do.
A group of nine NGOs (who knew there were so many – fat CIA budgets, I guess) sign a statement on the arrests and harassment of journalists in Hong Kong.
In Atlantic, the (Hong Kong-born) director of Freedom House explains how it feels when China puts you on its Big List of Nasty People We Don’t Like.
It is a bit disorienting to wake up early expecting to go out for a walk, and find that you have been personally targeted for sanctions by the most powerful authoritarian state in the world.
Fans of cartoons – especially basic ones apparently done on a smart phone on a bus – will like this.
Rest of World on Hong Kong’s future as a data hub post-NatSec Law.
At the mundane end of the spectrum, TransitJam reports that officials are demanding that HKU convert a welfare office to parking spaces. While other cities learn from Covid-19 experience and expand things like bicycle lanes, Hong Kong – as the CCP destroys its main advantages as a business location – focuses on reducing basic quality of life.
On cinematic matters… Why do people in Hong Kong hate Jackie Chan? Let me count the ways. (OK, you know already – but Vice lay it all out for a global audience.) And for some reason the Chinese public are unhappy with the poster for Disney’s Mulan. Apparently, it looks ‘too 2000’, which is a Bad Thing. So even the Mainland is going to boycott it.
Not a movie – but maybe it will be one day! The Heritage Foundation (pinch of salt advised) on the possibility of the Three Gorges Dam bursting.
A slightly tongue-in-cheek essay on the difficulties of learning (basically reading and writing) Chinese. By David Moser when he was still a student (he’s now a distinguished sinologist). Daring in that it uses non-academic words like ‘stupid’ to describe things like the system of characters. (He later found digital methods a relief.)
Whenever I read the combination of letters and spaces that make up “Ted Hui”, within a millisecond I think “twat”. His look doesn’t help. Concerning the specifics, the case with the protester trying to grab the cop’s gun makes my blood boil (at frustration with the officer); he should have aimed the business end of the weapon at the knobhead’s face and then pulled the trigger. If early on the cops had shot just a handful of the louties, it would have put to bed a heck of a lot sooner many of the shenanigans. Granted, there would have been 3-4 days of outrage from the overseas media and posturing Western politicos, but you just sit it out and eventually it will blow over.
Well, now that Nuri Vittachi is sailing the “South Wind”, he may even get his column back at the SCMP! Will he call it Hóngbāo 红包 ?
Remember the good old days of Hong Kong when thick headed clothing companies (IZZUE, as I recall?) thought it was cutting edge and cool to print up and sell t-shirts with Nazi eagles and swastikas, later apologizing to the steaming local Jewish community? Now HK “government” has its very own GESTAPO! Woo Hoo!!
…and when “WE Chinese people need to be controlled…”, the sage Jackie Chan obviously means the non uber rich, non foreign passport holding Chinese.
(thank you for indulging me)
As I am walking down the street
What is it that I see?
Neither hidden nor discreet,
A car draws up and from it streams
A group of men and – can this be? –
They grab a woman, who screams.
No uniform tells who they are.
The push her in the car.
This can’t be what it seems!
Real life? No, it is not!
This is the roiling stuff of dreams.
Perplexed, I can’t believe the sight there.
Perhaps a film is being shot.
A woman, alone, abducted, right there.
Drama – fiction – surely – or a nightmare.
Whenever my mind is soiled by reading your banal malignancies, I am wont to recall a famous phrase of the late Aneurin Bevan, and to reflect upon how perfectly it applies to you.
Nye Bevan said many, many things. To which famous phrase do you refer?
As long as Yonden LaTootoo is working at the AlibabaRag I shall not ‘whitelist’ and I shall not subscribe to the aforesaid ‘newspaper’. Neither will I advertise in, or recommend to anyone, the A-Rag.
Of course, since I am not a subscriber, I wouldn’t be able to read his drivel anyway, or the Christine Who? column, or the Vagina Ip (‘Go, team Regina’) or the Ronny Tong (‘how old are you? Twelve? Come and sit on uncle’s lap’) columns.
THE famous phrase was that the Tories are “lower than vermin”.
True then, true now.
Of course a competent administration would have combined the Covid tests with the Legco election in a two for the price of one arrangement. Get your swab and then proceed to polling booth.
Oh I forgot, the elderly care homes are not included in the Covid testing arrangement.
is Xi gay?
“Lower than vermin” certainly applies to Cockhead #4 with his obnoxious and offensive remarks. That he supports HK’s uniformed thugs and their disproportionate, vindictive methods is no surprise at all.
A sizable fraction of the protesters were thugs (I write this using the past-tense because the “Revolution of our Times” is over, largely because the overseas agitators left and/or cannot get back in to HK – the locals need strong “guidance” and the associated participation monies). You should also take on board the notion that the police were responding to the rioters’ violence (your stock position will be to refute my contention, but that it not my problem). The Police should have been a lot, lot firmer. There were several instances where they should have used live ammunition, including early on when the Legco building was ransacked. To re-work a line from the DSOTM, “What they needed was a short, sharp, shock”.
Your problem #4 is that you are a uniformed-thug apologist – to name just one.
@ Lower than Vermin
You’re reading of the situation is that of a deranged, blowhard gammon… the cops ALLOWED the youths to enter Legco.
In previous posts you paraded a supposed serene calm, but you take the bait like a tankie on meth
If Nury Vittachi actually bothered to look at the NED’s website (www.ned.org), or type “national endowment for democracy hong kong grants 2019” he would have seen that each of the four grants issued is for a specific project (https://www.ned.org/region/asia/hong-kong-china-2019/). None of them appear to be general support for the protests. And, given the application process for NED grants, they couldn’t have been.
The United Front of course is completely open and transparent about which projects it supports.
But then again, our Nury is not overly endowed with intellectual curiosity – or even a basic journalistic inclination to checking his facts.
Nury is not a journalist – he’s a purveyor of useless trivia for the amusement of small minds.