Absurdity to be streamlined – starting April 1

No scientific logic involved, but the Hong Kong government ‘streamlines’ the flight suspensions regime in such a way few will notice much difference. And with impeccable timing, the Airport Authority announces that the third runway will start operations later this year. (As a Mainland-built Covid isolation facility?)

Much of the mental trauma Hong Kong people are undergoing arises not just from the effects of harsh and unscientific Covid policies, but from trying to work out why?

From a (probably paywalled) Economist story on Beijing’s obsession with internal stability ahead of the CCP congress later this year…

If officials relax the [zero-Covid] policy to protect the economy they would risk a surge of cases that could overwhelm China’s fragile public-health system.

Surely the root of the Hong Kong dilemma. If Hong Kong transitions to ‘living with Covid’ ahead of the Mainland, what message does that send the Chinese public about the CCP’s infallibility? We have to drag out absurd flight suspensions so as not to look different.

And then the icing on the cake: an HKFP article points out how omicron has given Beijing an opportunity to reduce barriers between the Mainland and Hong Kong systems via traditional medicine and health workers. (Extra context: a relentless focus on travel-, quarantine- and school-related policies that encourage the middle class and expats to leave.)

As Dr Owens mentions in his latest, the greatest suffering falls on the least well-off. And…

The failure to define a strategy has resulted in an attempt to walk a tight rope, balancing on the one side, science and evidence, and on the other a political constituency seemingly unable to understand the most basic concepts of biology.

And how did this get past the SCMP’s Party Secretary? The patriotism/Nat-Sec-driven dismantling of district civic groups – and official boycotting of remaining pan-dem activists – has undermined the fight against Covid at neighbourhood level…

“It took a few months for the government to break community links that had taken 40 years to build up. We can’t expect anyone to have the ability to rebuild them soon.”

The official explanation for Shanghai’s use of phased lockdowns in handling its latest outbreak: the region’s economic importance to the rest of the world. Sounds like making-it-up-as-we-go bullshit. Probably a sign of tension between zero-Covid ideologues and science-based pragmatists as the city is poised to go the way of Hong Kong.

For chart geeks – HKFP presents highlights of Hong Kong’s omicron saga in graphic form.

And, on non-Covid affairs, how Beijing is enforcing correct thinking on Ukraine among educators.

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13 Responses to Absurdity to be streamlined – starting April 1

  1. Chef Wonton says:

    Surprising that no lightbulb in the government has noticed that instead of suspending airlines from flying a route for seven days, they could fine airlines instead.

  2. A Poor Man says:

    Did Curry Lamb really admit yesterday that the current omicrom outbreak is due to cross-infection in a quarantine hotel and not misbehaving Cathy Pacific flight crew members?

    If I remember correctly it was reported that someone was infected during their 3rd week of quarantine by a newer arrival in the Silka Seaview Hotel in YMT. It seems that she has a lot of blood on her hands because of the non-science based policies she implemented and the poor execution of those policies.

  3. Mary Melville says:

    ‘As Dr Owens mentions in his latest, the greatest suffering falls on the least well-off’…..
    With its uncanny aptitude for impeccable timing, just when thousands of small firms are gasping for breath and trying to stay afloat, there are three plans currently going through Town Planning Board that will result in a number of SME’s operating from industrial buildings owned by the government losing their tenancy in affordable units and throwing blue collar workers in Kwun Tong, Fo Tan and Cheung Sha Wan out of jobs in districts with large grass roots communities.
    https://hongkongfp.com/2021/07/20/over-90-of-tenants-at-4-hong-kong-industrial-estates-oppose-redevelopment-plan/
    With free media abolished and the board under pressure to approve any plan that features the words ‘public housing’ it is a foregone conclusion that the plans will sail through.
    The vocal objections of the tenants will encourage swift implementation of recently announced plans to remove the voice of the community from the town planning process.
    Note that nowhere in the papers is there any mention of support from the tenants on the part of the FTU and other pro-government unions. But then we have always known where their priorities lie and certainly do not include supporting workers.
    Deadlines are imminent, should any of you want to make comment go to
    https://www.info.gov.hk/tpb/en/papers/papers.html

  4. Casira says:

    @Chef Wonton: I wonder how that could work legally, it’s not like the airlines did anything wrong (assuming the paperwork is in order). Likely the airlines would then just pass through the cost of the fines to the unlucky positives anyways.

  5. Mjrelje says:

    Airlines are clearly voting with their feet. Finnair have cancelled all HKG flights until June 3rd. BA not bothering to resume services until further notice. CX showing a clear FU with no increase of services with the “7-day flight ban mechanism”. And has everyone signed this: https://www.change.org/p/remove-hong-kong-hotel-quarantine-for-vaccinated-residents?recruiter=5026535&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=psf_combo_share_initial&utm_term=psf_combo_share_initial&recruited_by_id=79e861b0-b323-0130-8d0e-3c764e049b10&utm_content=fht-32784124-en-gb%3A0&fbclid=IwAR3yv0eC7ABwEOsm84iEY1wDi8pKtq3eMOa4Bhk9Dl2Qmuz4b2UafeTedWI

  6. zatluhcas says:

    @Chef Wonton: please don’t give them ideas. Fine them instead and many will stop flying the route completely.

  7. Mark Bradley says:

    “Did Curry Lamb really admit yesterday that the current omicrom outbreak is due to cross-infection in a quarantine hotel and not misbehaving Cathy Pacific flight crew members?

    If I remember correctly it was reported that someone was infected during their 3rd week of quarantine by a newer arrival in the Silka Seaview Hotel in YMT. It seems that she has a lot of blood on her hands because of the non-science based policies she implemented and the poor execution of those policies.”

    I am sure that useless cunt was instructed by her Party Secretary handler Luo Huining to fall on her sword.

    She also said that it will be up to the next administration to conduct an investigation into the handling of the pandemic and offered herself as an advisor implying that she will not receive a second term as CE.

    I hope UK bans this bitch and she’s thrown into prison for misconduct in public office Donald Tsang style; unlike Bow Tie she actually deserves it.

  8. Chef Wonton says:

    @Casira. Airlines facing fines for transporting infected passengers instead of suspensions, would probably try to pass on fines to whichever labs tested the passengers incorrectly as negative at the departing airport/location.

    @zatluhcas. Best guess is suspensions are more likely to kill an airline’s appetite for Hong Kong than fines. Disruption from a seven day suspension is quite the headache for airlines: pilot and crew rosters are all mucked up, fuel loads are not needed so storage admin increases, aircraft maintenance has to shift to different cycles, the whole palaver. Plus, passengers will hunt around for other airlines, to whom they may stay loyal. That’s likely why BA have given up on any Hong Kong flights until June; the risk of suspension is just too dashed complicated. (What a loss that is, by the way, those HKG/LHR night flights with BA used to be like gold.) Fines, on the other hand, keeps the show on the road. The airlines just bleed a little more red than usual, but that’s not their concern right now, if they could they would sell all their pilot’s right kidneys to maximise their slots.

  9. The Laminator C-2022 says:

    @Mark Bradley
    Given Lam’s expertise amounts to getting caught completely by surprise by a pandemic a whole two years after everyone else did and achieving the highest death rate from it in the world, I’m not sure what advice she can offer.

    Other than “don’t listen to anything I say, because I’m the worst in the world at dealing with viruses.”

  10. Penny says:

    “Hong Kong Disneyland is set to reopen on April 21 as the government relaxes social distancing rules”
    https://news.rthk.hk/rthk/en/component/k2/1641280-20220328.htm
    However, bars and beaches to remain closed and people still not able to exercise outdoors without wearing a mask until late May.
    Absurdity still prevails.

  11. Mark Bradley says:

    “I’m not sure what advice she can offer.”

    Indeed. It would only be for “face”. I hope they just NSL arrest this cunt for inciting hatred against the HK govt and revoke bail.

  12. Chinese Netizen says:

    @Mark Bradley 4:28 & 8:28pm – Hear hear!!

  13. Hermes says:

    “Mjrelje – Signed and shared.
    I’ve seen another petition online as well, maybe worth signing too – it only has a few hundred signatories so far.

    https://www.change.org/p/lift-flight-specific-bans-in-hk

    I think it’s time to stop penalising airlines and HK residents and let people stranded overseas come home. However, with lockdowns starting in Shanghai I’m not too optimistic HK is ready to transition to ‘living with Covid’.

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