Mega-events never cease

Tasked with creating mega-buzz events to show how Hong Kong is back to normal, civil servants use their great creative powers and come up with Inflatable Wonders – blow-up historic landmarks on Central waterfront. Photos here to deflate your expectations, complete with pointy Stonehenge megaliths. Could be worth checking out the day after a huge typhoon hits.

Global Times picks up on the Security Secretary’s denunciation of the HKJA…

The infamous Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) recently elected its new executive committee. The new committee, unsurprisingly similar to the association’s previous leadership, is mainly composed of journalists from foreign media outlets and freelancers, making it more like a group representing foreign journalists in Hong Kong.

Indeed, the HKJA, with its spotty history of colluding with separatist politicians and instigating riots in Hong Kong, is by no means a professional organization representing the Hong Kong media. It instead serves as a base for anti-China separatist forces to disrupt Hong Kong, and a malignant tumor that harms the city’s safety and stability, said analysts. 

The piece goes on to name office-holders and their anti-China stances, with reference to ‘so-called “freelancers”’, ‘black hands’, the National Endowment for Democracy, ‘color revolutions’, Jimmy Lai, and some history…

The HKJA was established in 1968 by Jack and Margaret Spackman. Over the years, the number of association members has been fewer than 10 percent of the local media industry, with quite a few being non-media personnel. It has never been an independent, professional media organization, but “a weird mix of dragons and fishes,” commented observers reached by the Global Times.

Criticism in state media suggests that the ‘unprofessional, unwelcome’ Association’s days are numbered.

Talking of evil foreign media smearing Hong Kong, Reuters has more on the departures of non-permanent CFA judges…

Six senior commercial lawyers with over a century’s combined experience said the resignations exacerbated long-standing concerns about Hong Kong’s future as a legal centre.

They noted firms drafting commercial contracts, joint ventures, or deciding where to arbitrate complex cases, are now increasingly opting the likes of Singapore, Dubai or Delaware in the U.S., rather than Hong Kong, in contractual jurisdiction clauses, because they are seen as more neutral.

“Sumption and Collins leaving is devastating for Hong Kong, in terms of the CFA’s powers as a commercial appellate court,” a commercial lawyer with three decades experience told Reuters, declining to be identified given the sensitivity of the matter.

…The debate over the robustness of Hong Kong’s rule of law could also exacerbate difficulties in recruiting new judges to Hong Kong courts, lawyers say.

Of the city’s 211 designated judicial posts, only 163 are currently filled according to judiciary figures. Average wait times were 171 days for civil cases in the High Court and 111 days for the District Court in March 2024, both up from 2019.

The staffing crunch has been severe enough for the judiciary to now recruit private lawyers as deputy judges for short stints of up to several months, according to a government report, noting the number of such external deputy judges had almost doubled from 23 in 2018 to 45 in 2022.

“The recent criticism is likely to have a reputational impact and make it even more difficult to replenish judges from the private sector,” said a fourth commercial lawyer with over 40 years’ experience, referring to Sumption’s remarks.

After the HKJA is dispatched, how long before Reuters, Bloomberg, the WSJ and FT come under greater struggle-session scrutiny from Beijing’s supporters and newspapers?

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13 Responses to Mega-events never cease

  1. Joe Blow says:

    I would like to see a giant, inflatable image of “pro-Beijing heavyweight” Maria Tam hoovering over the harbor (think Hindenburg). Tourism figures will double overnight.

  2. Lord Denning says:

    “The recent criticism is likely to…make it even more difficult to replenish judges from the private sector,” said a fourth commercial lawyer.


    The clarifying debate will make it easier to attract mediocre legal talent to the judiciary. It’s prestigious, high pay, lifetime employment, indoor work, no heavy lifting and comes with a HK Club membership. They’ll be lining up to wear a wig.

  3. Chinese Netizen says:

    @Lord Denning: You’re very likely spot on. Law is no different than other professions… there are opportunistic, mediocre bottom feeders everywhere. However, knowing this, I wonder if the HKCCPSAR government will whittle the bennies and perks from these less than premium choices (and still get what they want)? Will Rudy Giuliani be looking for employment?

    “After the HKJA is dispatched, how long before Reuters, Bloomberg, the WSJ and FT come under greater struggle-session scrutiny from Beijing’s supporters and newspapers?”

    No brainer and probably sooner than later.

  4. Casira says:

    Right now they can’t pass an actual exam and the diploma mills won’t help them for that.

  5. Low Profile says:

    What is this obsession the government seems to have with big blowup toys? Ducks, chubby hearts, and now wonders of the world. Could it be that some of our politicians see themselves reflected in these artefacts: over-inflated, full of hot air, and basically useless?

  6. Paul says:

    I’m a bit surprised that Attack-Dog Tang and the GT haven’t (yet) taken the FCC to task for the blatent political posturing of their scaffolding screen.

  7. Clucks Defiance says:

    After the HKJA is dispatched, how long before the FCC comes under greater struggle-session scrutiny from Beijing’s supporters and newspapers?

  8. Citizen Kane says:

    The FCC is a Potemkin edifice where all the foreign media malcontents gather in a single conveniently-located place so it’s easy to keep an eye on them.

  9. Lord Denning says:

    @Chinese Netizen,

    Of course I am spot on. I am Lord Denning!


  10. Clucks Defiance says:

    @Citizen Kane,

    Ah yes. But is it inflatable?

  11. Red Dragon says:

    What I’d certainly cross the road for is a giant, inflatable model of Allan Zeman’s duck.

    An all expenses paid “away day” to Shenzhen for the first person to spot the deliberate typo.

  12. Ho lan ma fan says:

    @Red dragon

    You evin cult, you

  13. asiaseen says:

    a giant, inflatable model of Allan Zeman’s duck.

    Does it still inflate?

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