Delete ‘thoughts’, insert ‘interviews’

In case you’re wondering what he’s doing all day – new Chief Secretary John Lee says all hopeful Election Committee candidates will have their past words, deeds and interviews scrutinized. He and his Vetting Committee will thus make sure only sincere patriots take part (even though they don’t have enough time to do thoughts). 

This will worry hundreds of businessmen and other ‘secular’ pro-Beijing shoe-shiners who want to win seats on the (essentially) rubber-stamp body. They want to do this for the same reason they have sucked up to the CCP since becoming ‘instant-noodle patriots’ in the 1980s: it served their personal interests (not to mention their vanity). The pre-Xi national leadership was happy with that, but it is no longer good enough. Chances are that no big names will find themselves rejected, but they will understand the message – and realize that they are in a trap.

By contrast, the devout and faithful can face the inquisition with a clear conscience. A CCP-friendly union boss talks of getting on the Election Committee as a way to fix the problems caused in Hong Kong by ‘capitalists’, including housing – the main source of profits for the tycoon shoe-shiners.

Meanwhile the Justice Dept decides that Frederic Choi – NatSec cop found at an illicit ‘massage’ place in Wanchai – is innocent of any crime. (“Is he a speech therapist?” “No, Mr Prosecutor SC, he’s a Senior Assistant Deputy Chief Vice [wink] Sub-Inspector.” “Oh well, that’s OK then!”) The really cool thing: he’s made HK Police director of personnel and training – which (you know it’s going to get better) covers discipline.

Some recommended reading for the next day or two…

Steve Vines in the Guardian on why he left Hong Kong. (Democratic Party leader Lee Wing-tat has also gone.)

SCMP op-ed: increasingly ‘uninvestible’ Hang Seng Index (ie Tracker Fund) as metaphor for Hong Kong as it is absorbed into Bay Area concept and Mainland governance.

The Globe and Mail on the decline of Hong Kong’s anti-corruption service…

…“the perversion of institutions is now so blatant that there are no longer any respectable excuses to pretend otherwise.”

A few HKFP pieces: an interview with film director Kiwi Chow; former district council members try to stay active as the NatSec regime squeezes out civil society; and how the government disregards the law in that process.

On Mainland affairs, an SCMP article on household debt in China: a Shenzhen couple struggling to pay mortgages on apparently three or four unsellable investment properties, while (presumably male) migrant workers are borrowing to pay big wedding dowries.

“Everyone’s loans and leverage are piling up. If you don’t increase yours, you will lag behind in wealth. Of course the risks are growing like crazy, but no one dares to lower leverage, neither the rich nor the government.”

Plus comment by Michael Pettis.

Willy Wo-lap Lam on Xi’s struggle to keep himself at the top (the second half has the meat)…

In the run-up to next year’s 20th Party Congress, Xi and his supporters are tipped to promulgate more internal and public regulations affirming the imperative of the leadership core staying in power as long as his health permits. 

Project Syndicate on Beijing’s apparent fiddling of its population stats…

…an analysis of the country’s age structure suggests that it has far fewer citizens than the census reported and that its population is already declining…

Western leaders are overestimating [China’s] economic and geopolitical prospects. They see a fire-breathing dragon when what stands before them is really a sick lizard. This raises the risk of strategic miscalculation on both sides.

Kevin Caricco’s latest on…

…a toxic bottom-up nationalism masquerading as official, while at the same time being intertwined with top-down official nationalism’s targeting of “foreign media.”

A Spectator column by a former UK diplomat on Chinese Olympic cyclists wearing Mao badges, and the IOC’s kowtowing to Beijing. Worth reading for the final para.

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21 Responses to Delete ‘thoughts’, insert ‘interviews’

  1. Chinese Netizen says:

    Fucking Popo deserve the likes of Choi.

    Let his gentle wrist slap and staying in a position of authority fester and burn into whatever sense of what might have been honourable and righteous in the remaining (non mainland imported) ranks as a reminder every day that you can get away with being a dirty POS now. So why not go for it and get yours while you can?

  2. Paul Lewis says:

    Someone needs to alert the Correctional Services Department that prisoners can never be rehabilitated.
    They need to change their whole system.
    So it seems now that any past words or deeds that are deemed unpatriotic will forever disqualify a person for office.
    Therefore, people cannot change their minds or opinions.
    I’m sure if we go back through the files, almost anyone who plans to stand in any of these “elections” there will be a comment here or there that can easily be said to be unpatriotic.

  3. reductio says:

    So, a happy ending for Frederic Choi after all.

  4. Probably says:

    So if the IOC approves of wearing Mao badges, if I win a medal can a wear a Hitler badge?

  5. A Poor Man says:

    I nominate Reductio for comment of the week.

  6. Chinese Netizen says:

    reductio – nice… 😉

  7. Chopped Onions says:

    “There is an element of prostitution in the way the IOC approaches communis(t) China.”
    element?……….ha ha ha ha. It is how the ccp does relations: heres the cash, now lets [email protected] you….

  8. reductio says:

    @ Paul Lewis

    Completely agree. However, what I also find disturbing is how this mind set is increasingly manisfesting itself in the West. Whatever comment or opinion you may have ever have had is an indelible stain thereafter. Made a racist joke when you were 18? Lose your job. Not sure if trans people should be competing in female sports? Get doxed. As a university lecturere you want an honest debate about the value of affirmative action? Your taking Awareness Raising courses while on “administrative leave” (and forget about promotion). I can see where the commies get off on this as it’s in their philosophical DNA, but the West is supposed to be a bastion of open debate, a plurality of viewpoints and the belief that people can change for the better.

  9. Low Profile says:

    @Paul Lewis – “They [the Correctional Services Department] need to change their whole system”. Starting with their name – maybe “Repressional Services Department”?

  10. Joe Blow says:

    I know I shouldn’t have but I did: I read patriot Mike Rowse’ column in the Alibaba rag. Nothing newsworthy of course. He ran out of material 20 years ago. But then I reached the paragraph at the end where he tried to sugarcoat the genocide in Xinjiang. And then I had to throw up in my mouth a bit.

  11. Penny says:

    Spectator column worth reading in full – likewise many of the other links.

  12. Kwun Tong Bypass says:

    Maybe with a little bit of creativity Chris Tang could also make case for Frederic Choi having ‘sacrificed family time’.
    After all, Freddy did “…..connect with people from all walks and ranks of the society” and “this allows us to know what goes on in society, what people from different classes are concerned about and how we may set policies….”

  13. Mark Bradley says:

    @ reductio

    While this is all true and political correctness has absolutely gone over the top in the west, the constitutional guarantee of free speech (in most western jurisdictions anyway), only protects you from government persecution. It does not protect you from public persecution from lynch mobs. Furthermore, places like Twitter and Facebook are not public spaces (they are private spaces) therefore speech on these platforms can be moderated. Of course there are private spaces (in the west anyway) where people can speak freely and most importantly anonymously so that they can not be doxxed by psychotic neck beards.

  14. Low Profile says:

    @Paul Lewis – thinking about this again, the concept of rehabilitation of criminals assumes that they have done something wrong. That may work for theft, assault, murder, blackmail, fraud or rape – but the rapidly expanding new cohort of Hong Kong prisoners are inside for believing in democracy. “Patriots” know in their hearts that most of these people can never be “rehabilitated” – except perhaps by torture, intensive brainwashing or the Ronny Tong method – because they have right on their side.

  15. Strangely Brown says:

    @ Kwun Tong Pass

    Here’s Chris “sacrificing family time’.

    https://www.thestandard.com.hk/section-news/section/21/233010/Fans-flock-to-Chris-Tang

  16. Quis masturbarat ipsos custodes? says:

    @Kwun Tong Bypass
    After all, Freddy did “…..connect with people from all walks and ranks of the society”
    Fixed it for you. 😉

  17. Mary Melville says:

    “The Secretary for Security also used his consumption e-voucher to buy meals,” Or added.
    Question nobody is asking is why these officials on mega salaries, CE and FS in particular, have applied for the vouchers. They certainly do not need the cash, CE can reach for the stash under her bed.
    Surely their quota would be better spent by retaining it in the Treasury for disbursement to the thousands who lost their jobs?????????????

  18. Mark Bradley says:

    @Strangely Brown

    “https://www.thestandard.com.hk/section-news/section/21/233010/Fans-flock-to-Chris-Tang”

    This entire “article” (A 4 paragraph blurb) is stuffthatdidnthappen.txt or something from a parallel universe.

  19. Mary Melville says:

    Of course it is mere coincidence that the ‘gathering ban’ and the ‘mask order’ – presumably both the one that you cannot wear one and ‘t’other that you must wear one – are with us until after the CE Election on ………. 27 March
    The Government announced today (August 10) that it will extend the expiry dates of various regulations under the Prevention and Control of Disease Ordinance (Cap. 599) to March 31, 2022.
    One enduring characteristic of our government is its predictability.

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