NatSec having a good weekend

Hong Kong’s Security Secretary warns that a nightmarish horde of evils – anti-China disruptors, destructive forces and lurking foreigners – are deliberately obstructing the holding of a successful election. Putting previous winning candidates in jail has nothing to do with it.

Even lurking foreigners who are lurking overseas are not safe. Hong Kong trade bureaucrats based in London, who used to focus on deepening economic ties with the UK, now threaten the Sunday Times with legal penalties for incitement to boycott the election.

Back in Hong Kong, officials remind schools to traumatize six-year-olds with care when making them patriotic. 

Lawyer Samuel Bickett critiques the guilty verdict against Jimmy Lai for June 4 vigil  ‘incitement’…

It is often the case that seasoned activists commit offenses to highlight the injustice of the law they are breaking. That may have been the case with Chow and Ho, two long-time activists who I admire deeply. But with Lai, there is no evidence whatsoever that he incited anyone to attend the assembly. Instead, Judge Woodcock appears to have convicted him simply for being a famous political opponent of the government. And in her written Reasons for Verdict, she did little to hide it…

…The ruling is plainly, insidiously wrong as a matter of law.

Maybe at least the Court of Final Appeal will help protect citizens from abuses of power, right? Or maybe not. The Court refuses to overturn a refusal of bail for five speech therapists accused of sedition – ‘bringing into hatred or contempt or to exciting disaffection’ against the government – by publishing kids’ picture books about sheep.

Some apologists for the NatSec regime imply that the dismantling of Hong Kong’s freedoms and rule of law are worth it because we will get better governance. Which brings us to a nasty accident in Central’s Staunton Street that leaves one dead. As with many parts of Hong Kong, if you go through this crowded area with its lack of sidewalk space, you might wonder why cars are allowed in it at all – let alone to go up and park in steep cul-de-sacs. Anyway, the key thing: the government has apparently disappeared a proposal to pedestrianize parts of Soho.

(Prediction: the Anti-Pedestrian Dept will erect signage throughout the area saying ‘Engage handbrake when parking illegally’.)

Some links to get us through to mid-week…

HKFP op-ed on the Hong Kong government’s fear that overseas domestic workers might get paid half-decently.

‘How the West invited China to eat its lunch’ – the BBC’s economics editor looks at the (with hindsight) naive decision 20 years ago to let China into the WTO.

The Economist (paywalled) columnist Chaguan on the CCP’s claims to have a more perfect and effective democracy than the West’s version… 

If controlling covid gives Mr Xi a mandate, were his predecessors illegitimate when officials spent months mishandling an earlier deadly disease, sars? If the economy slows will the party, by its own logic, still deserve to rule?

Glossy magazines for adolescent girls aren’t what they used to be:Teen Vogue looks at the women around the world urging a boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

History Today on the creation of a national language for China…

To imagine the process of creating a Chinese national language as a close vote and a regional power struggle is to ignore how these men actually conceived of a ‘Chinese language’: not as one language among many, but a linguistic representative of the nation’s soul. The question these reformers were asking was not ‘which fangyan do we choose?’ but ‘how do we encapsulate what it means to be Chinese in a spoken language?’ 

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12 Responses to NatSec having a good weekend

  1. Probably says:

    So RTHK can traumatise schoolchildren “with care”. Does that mean they can also show dramatisations of tanks crushing people and the PLA shooting unarmed civilians at Tiananman Square?

    My wife who grew up in China recounts the time when she was at primary school and they brought in a grandmother to tell the children about Mao’s “Great Leap Forward”. Unfortunately she started rambling about how the only thing they had to eat was the bark from the trees before she was quickly ushered from the room.

  2. Chinese Netizen says:

    Seems Gilford LAW (trying to be clever here with his name?) of London’s HK Economic/Trade office has forgotten about something called JURISDICTION. Funnier even since he represents a mainland China city and nothing more.

  3. FishChris says:

    I’m an atheist but the Bickett comments on the Lai verdict compel me to scripture:

    Micah 3:9-12
    Now hear this, heads of the house of Jacob And rulers of the house of Israel, Who abhor justice And twist everything that is straight, Who build Zion with bloodshed And Jerusalem with violent injustice. Her leaders pronounce judgment for a bribe, Her priests instruct for a price And her prophets divine for money Yet they lean on the LORD saying, “Is not the LORD in our midst? Calamity will not come upon us.”
    Therefore, on account of you Zion will be plowed as a field, Jerusalem will become a heap of ruins, And the mountain of the temple will become high places of a forest.

  4. reductio says:

    “As the representative of Hong Kong, he [Gilford Law] will be tasked to promote Hong Kong’s bilateral relations with the United Kingdom and eight other states—Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Russia, and Sweden.”

    Already off to a flying start, Gilford. And how’s Lithuania doing these days?

  5. Penny says:

    How’s this for HK government hypocrisy:
    The spokesman added: “We hope all sectors in the society can understand that learning national history is important to educate the next generation, trust education professionals and teachers’ guidance, and not to be misled by one-sided discourse.”

    Meanwhile they cynically attempt to mislead long-suffering HK students with their own one-sided discourse on HK and PRC history. As if the HK education system was not bad enough before the NSL came into effect. I predict more young people opting to lie flat after having been bored stupid by what is being inflicted upon them in HK schools.

  6. Ho Ma Fan says:

    Comical that Nathan Law accused of skipping bail when we all know that it would never have been granted in the first place.

  7. Kwun Tong Bypass says:

    Guys and Gals!
    I saw a foreign agent lurking in TST yesterday: A grey Aston Martin DB5 was parked in front of the Peninsula, and a Gentlemen looking at the Tamar complex with binoculars from the Felix Restaurant. And a waiter was just serving him a dirty Martini. Better call in the Liaoning!

  8. Eye for an eye says:

    I suspect the Sunday Times will most likely refer Mr. Law to the reply given in the case of Arkell v. Pressdram.

  9. reductio says:

    @Eye for an eye

    Oh my, that would be sweet!

  10. where's my jet plane says:

    Why hasn’t The Failed Social Worker fired Kevin Leung for even thinking that showing the Nanjing massacre film to any children, let alone 6-yr olds, is acceptable? Probably being TFSW is a clue.

  11. Chinese Netizen says:

    @Eye4Eye: Brilliant and oh so appropo.

  12. Mary Melville says:

    The ‘disappeared’ pedestrianization report is a minor ‘cover my ass’ sleight of hand when compared to the refusal, endorsed by the Dept of Injustice, to conduct an inquiry into the Lamma Ferry disaster. 39 dead and almost 100 injured, some no doubt with life long health implications, but it is swept under the carpet.
    If ever there was proof needed of the ineptitude of Legco, the failure of members to demand justice for the victim’s families is surely the most striking example that this body is certainly not interested in standing up for the people it declares to represent.

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