Catching up from the long weekend…

HKFP analysis of convictions for riot in recent years. Farewell ‘beyond reasonable doubt’, hello ‘joint enterprise’.

From citizen media via Transit Jam, former senior officials’ links with the illegal plant-operating China Concrete.

More from Samuel Bickett on the HK Gay Games organizers – this time, the ad man whose ‘extreme views are well known in Hong Kong gay circles’ who is running the marketing effort.

HKFP op-ed on the Justice Secretary’s claim that only a small number of Hongkongers have been affected by the NatSec/sedition laws… 

Since the passage of the law about half of the population has been deprived of the media of its choice because the organisations concerned closed, either because their staff and/or owners had been arrested or because they thought they would be next. More than 60 non-government organisations have folded. Independent trade unions have disappeared, Respected opinion leaders are barred by bail conditions from writing. Books have been banned from schools and libraries. These may be worthwhile sacrifices that we all have to make on the altar of national security but to claim that very few people have been affected is obvious nonsense.

Interesting CMP article on how Hong Kong officials are dutifully using Mainland policy buzzwords in the (not always appropriate) Hong Kong context.

Michael Pettis on whether China can exceed a long-term growth rate of 2-3%.

We are so accustomed to the phrase ‘港澳台’ that we forget its true (lack of) meaning. Academic paper Simulating territory: the rise and demise of Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan as an imaginary regional formation is available here ‘for a while’…

This case shows that by fabricating an imaginary regional formation, a state can facilitate the multiplication of different bordering schemes between and within territories it effectively administers, while at the same time press irredentist claims against a different and de facto independent state, with explosive outcomes.

A synopsis

By performing 港澳台 Hong Kong-Macao-Taiwan as a regional formation, the PRC pursues a strategy of irredentism … acting *as if* Taiwan was already subject to its rule. Issuing identical ID cards to Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan people is one tactic. 

…With Hong Kong and Macao self-determination movements snuffed out by ‘National Security’ Laws and Taiwan clearly going its own way, the imaginary “港澳台 Hong Kong-Macao-Taiwan” formation is being eclipsed by the “Greater Bay Area”, which omits Taiwan. 

National Interest looks into the PRC’s legal claim to Taiwan, and doesn’t find much – just a huge mess involving the 1943 Treaty of Cairo, post-WW2 arrangements giving the US sovereign power over the island, and the relative, shifting legitimacies of the ROC and PRC. The article says…

The legal issue today concerning Taiwan is not whether Beijing has title to Taiwan, given that China has not held title to the island since 1895, and has as weak a claim to it today as Spain does to Cuba.

But even this is hazy: do the Manchus of 1895 count as ‘China’, let alone today’s PRC?

The obsession with boosting the numbers continues. If tourists don’t want to come to Hong Kong, why not just leave them be? Then you don’t have to organize more tacky ‘attractions’ and import more retail workers. Why not remove tourism from the sacred list of ‘pillar industries’? Then we don’t have to worry about it any more. Problem solved. Lateral thinking!

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7 Responses to Catching up from the long weekend…

  1. Stanley Lieber says:

    Welcome back, Hemlock. You were missed.

  2. Goatboy says:

    I see David Ko is a Vittachi fan – tells you all you need to know. I wonder if Ruder Finn broke the PR agency boycott and submitted a bid for the Brand HK campaign?

  3. HKJC Irregular says:

    I’ve been waiting for an excuse to ignore this Gay Games and, hey presto, David Ko delivers. Ruder-Finn needs to remove this disaster of a tankie.

  4. Formerly known as... says:

    Good final question – the Qing Empire was a time when what is now China was under foreign occupation (again)

    To understand what a mess Taiwan’s status was immediately after WW2 read George Kerr’s “Formosa Betrayed”, as I am right now, doing homework to help understand the next few years. The KMT under Cash My Cheque were unbelievably awful. The population should have been given independence but were practically invaded by the KMT while the world didn’t really care. Let’s not let mainlanders invade the place again.

  5. Low Profile says:

    Tim Hamlett’s well-argued piece omits to mention that at the last election before the “improved” electoral system, 70% of voters opted for anti-establishment district council candidates. LegCo elections over the years have also seen close to two-thirds of voters consistently reject pro-government candidates. Since most pro-democracy legislative and district councillors have now been either disqualified or effectively forced from office by the new national security regime, that means two out of every three Hongkongers are denied the right to be represented by the candidate of their choice. But of course, 2/3 of the population is “very few”, don’t you agree?

  6. Chinese Netizen says:

    “Tim Hamlett’s well-argued piece omits to mention that at the last election before the “improved” electoral system, 70% of voters opted for anti-establishment district council candidates.”

    Likely some self editing for the sake of self preservation in this era of so called undiminished rights in Hong Kong.

  7. Guest says:

    “Hong Kong to entice big-spending tourists with better attractions…”

    Maybe ask Chow Tai Fook to open up 50 more branches along Nathan Road and in Causeway Bay?

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