Hey – there’s no shortage of shortages

Following panic-buying of facemasks, toilet paper, instant noodles, Panadol, fresh vegetables and frozen meat, Hong Kong experiences its latest shortage – coffins. But at least we have a healthy supply of patriots-only government.

Property tycoon Ronnie Chan becomes the latest shoe-shiner-turned-backstabber with an SCMP op-ed criticizing the Hong Kong administration for its Covid failures. As always with these sudden displays of condemnation, the angle is that local leaders failed to follow Beijing’s instructions – which you may or may not feel is duplicitous crap, though I couldn’t possibly comment. Ronnie (or his ghostwriter) also laboriously pedals the line that we must cut ourselves off from the whole world because we are so reliant on the Mainland – which you may or may not feel is illogical garbage, and it is.

Officials tell Hongkongers they should be grateful that Mainland medical staff have arrived here. Despite being offered HK$30,000 a month – a multiple of a Mainland doctor’s usual salary – the low number of cross-border medics has disappointed officials. A Standard editorial asks

Could it be due to personal concern because of the risky job nature? Or could it be because the recruits may not actually pocket that much if their hiring is carried out via recruitment or other agencies that charge the workers fees deductible from their earnings?

The editorial also suggests deputizing foreign domestic helpers as quarantine facility carers. Whether it’s a brilliant or dreadful idea, it’s the sort of out-of-the-box thinking that would make our bureaucrats’ brains explode. 

Part 3 of the riveting Shanghai Quarantine Diaries. In today’s episode: a young nurse who pushes the nasal swab too far finds the test kits also measure patients’ IQs; Miss Fang in Unit 64J dies of hiccups after eating the mysterious brown lumpy thing in her lunchbox; owing to confusing instructions, medical staff accidentally perform lobotomies on 20 new arrivals; Aunty May of Unit 71B wins the all-Medical Detention Facility cockroach-stomping competition for the fourth week in a row; and as a special treat, inmates receive Volume 7 of Xi Jinping’s The Governance of China in Romanian. Now read on.

(With apologies to the late great Viv Stanshall.)

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14 Responses to Hey – there’s no shortage of shortages

  1. donkey says:

    I stopped reading the quarantine diaries of the brewmaster after the first installment because I felt it was just a long-winded complaint about losing his liberty and freedom. he should save his breath for when he actually gets covid.

  2. Do Don’t RonRonRon says:

    Reading either would make me sick to the stomach, but any brave individual care to compare the writing styles of Ronnie Chan with Nury Vittachi’s latest drivel? I have a hunch …

  3. Chinese Netizen says:

    @donkey: Agreed. Additionally, I heard from a “beer scene” connected individual (not just a regular consumer) on the mainland that the brewmaster did some really stupid shit, business-wise that left some of his partners/investors out to dry. And was a bit of a prick, but that’s neither here nor there.

  4. donkey says:

    @Chinese Netizen although it may be relevant. maybe his diaries are a cover for him doing a runner on some of those beer lovers. I notice that he keeps referring to his wife by her full name and first name, as if to signal that she may be someone “in the family” so to speak.
    been in china long enough, and you begin to suspect that there is no such thing as an ideological wonderland where all narratives meet at believable.

  5. Casual Observer says:

    Do Don’t RonRonRon, Nury continues to defend the HK government’s handling of COVID. A few of his deep blue followers on his Facebook page have even fallen out with him because of it as he refuses to say a bad word about the Lam administration.

  6. Chinese Netizen says:

    Because EVERYTHING in CCPChina is transactional, I’m sure the validity of Nuri’s permanent residency card is now on a How-useful-can-you-continue-to-be basis.

  7. HKJC Irregular says:

    @Casual Observer + Do Don’t Ron…
    I don’t appreciate being reminded of Neuryosis Vicissitude, but thankyou for hints of what the twat is up to these days so I don’t have to look it up.

  8. Mary Melville says:

    In a city where the majority of deaths end in cremation coffins should not be an issue.
    Recycle. Only the body needs to be pulverized.
    But of course this would impact the bottom line of one of the most lucrative, and monopolized, dollar printing enterprises in town.
    All that mumbo jumbo paper burning, tonnes of wilting flowers, the enviro damage generated by the funeral homes is significant but never addressed.
    These rituals are based on commercial returns rather than on factual historical and cultural

  9. Goatboy says:

    Red Dragon asked the other day if the comments are getting more surreal. I think he’s right (apart from the peerless Mary Melville). Perhaps the situation is getting to all of us. All the more reason to thank Hemlock for keeping on with my daily dose of sanity. And you don’t see Viv Stanshall references every day.

  10. Knownot says:

    Let’s cheer up.
    A Vivian Stanshall anecdote (from a Daily Telegraph book of obituaries).

    Vivian Stanshall would enter a West End tailor’s and ask to see “the strongest pair of trousers in the shop.” Despite the apparent implausibility of such a request, most shopkeepers were, as he remembered, “only too eager” to provide him with a garment in what they considered their most durable fabric. Stanshall would then enlist the assistance of a bystander (Keith Moon), and together they would “test” the garment so thoroughly that it would disintegrate, leaving each of them holding a leg.

    The tailor’s cries of anger and surprise were, Stanshall recalled, the cue for the second accomplice – a one-legged man, hired from a theatrical agency – to come into the shop and exclaim: “Just the job! Wrap them separately!”

  11. Mark Bradley says:

    “All the more reason to thank Hemlock for keeping on with my daily dose of sanity”

    Amen to that. Hemlock’s blog is more critical than ever now.

  12. justsayin says:

    I did finish those ‘Covid Diaries’ – besides the shocking realisation that he’d no habeas corpus in the Heavenly Kingdom (/sark) the main takeaway was a bit more learning about how COVID cases are handled on the mainland. For easy readability he should have gone the full Kafka.

  13. WolfLikeMe says:

    A lot of schadenfreude for a guy who ran a beer business and got fat enjoying life from the paper pushers.

  14. Chef Wonton says:

    Not to let today’s marker pass unobserved, but there were more COVID infections, sorry “infections”, by self-testers v the army of govt nasal swabbers and lab workers.

    Which is to say, Hong Kong’s true infection rate was enormously higher than declared.

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