A noticeable recent trend in my email/WhatsApp messages: friends who have just started trips out of Hong Kong raving in disbelief about how amazing life is in the outside world. They had forgotten what normality is like. And indeed it does sound very strange.
Macau goes more or less Shanghai over Covid for a week. Much of the public transport shut down, most people told to stay at home – cops roaming streets – and everyone must take tests (and do a separate test before going to the test site). Even casinos (ie most of the economy) are closed. More here.
A few naive folk out there had this idea that when John Lee became Chief Executive, a less idiotic Covid policy would follow. In reality, someone, somewhere must be looking at Macau’s symbolic Mainland-emulating zero-infections performance and earnestly wanting Hong Kong to do something similar. And of course it goes beyond symbolism – cue proposal for a red/yellow/green code system linked to your real name/address enabling the government to monitor and control your movements. Not creepy or anything. Oh, and more frequent testing.
This week’s At Least It’s Not Covid Award goes to Häagen-Dazs ice cream – being withdrawn by Hong Kong health authorities for containing insecticide. (Strange but true: the product’s name has no meaning, but was invented by American marketing geniuses to sound vaguely exotic/Dutch/Scandinavian.)
A couple of interesting threads… Activist Michael Mo looks back at the campaign against the third runway (or second, since the old ‘second’ one is now undergoing maintenance). And thoughts from a carpenter’s daughter on the closure of Hong Kong’s last sawmill.