Overtime cancelled for government spin-doctors

And so, at last, the trial of the ‘Umbrella Nine’ begins. Here’s the full background, including links to a legal explainer and much else.

There’s probably never an ideal moment to try to throw a peaceful 74-year-old clergyman in prison, but for the Hong Kong government, this is especially unfortunate timing.

Under pressure from Beijing, local officials have stealthily extended censorship and other repression since the 2014 Umbrella-Occupy movement. With this Mainlandization becoming noticeably more heavy-handed in recent months, the overseas press are now paying attention. On top of that, the administration is trying people’s patience with an above-average range of plain everyday domestic screw-ups and messes, like a half-trillion-dollar reclamation plan, the PLA’s cross-border cabbage patch and a new public-nuisance-on-steroids influx of tourists.

Meanwhile, on the international stage (and possibly at home), Xi Jinping’s hubristic and overreaching regime is losing friends and ceasing to influence people over trade, Xinjiang, APEC, United Front obnoxiousness, debt-trap-diplomacy, the South China Sea and much else.

Now Benny writes in the NYT, and Amnesty wades in. Even in its officials’ whiny protests against external ‘interference’, Hong Kong is gradually looking and sounding more like part of the Mainland. The ‘incitement to incite’ trial – perhaps delayed for years in the hope few would notice – looks set to highlight and confirm it.

Rummaging around for reasons to be optimistic… How about ‘rewriting the Hong Kong story’ – would that work for you? Here’s more from ex-lawmaker Christine Loh on her theory that we can fix all this with a ‘new narrative’.

 

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11 Responses to Overtime cancelled for government spin-doctors

  1. Joe Blow says:

    When HK Police marched through the streets of Central with rifles loaded with live ammo during the first days of Occupy, Christine Loh said nothing.

    When Occupy took place, and the whole world watched, Christine Loh said nothing.

    When 689 divided our city and used his spiteful, confrontational, United Front inspired style to harass and intimidate anyone who disagreed, Christine Loh said nothing. She was busy serving him while counting her money.

    And now we suddenly have to take this bitch seriously ?

  2. Docta S. Freude says:

    It’s all so sad.

    So why can’t I stop laughing?

  3. Chinese Netizen says:

    “…the pro-Beijing faction in LegCo has come to control a special majority — and has used it to amend LegCo’s rules of procedure. As a result, the opposition can no longer filibuster to challenge controversial decisions by the government.” ~B. Tai

    Wow I feel like I’m reading about Bitch McConnell and his Groveling Over Putin party accomplices in ‘Murikkka.

  4. Revolution says:

    I haven’t read Loh and Cullen’s book but it is apparent from the interview that their arguments are founded on the mistaken assumption that there can be a dialogue between Hong Kong and the PRC.

    This isn’t going to happen: the Hong Kong government isn’t going to have that discussion, because all they are there to do is take orders. And anyone not in the government will at best be ignored and at worst be attacked in some way.

    The slide towards a system identical to that over the border will continue unless and until Beijing orders otherwise. The idea of anyone here negotiating with the PRC is a fantasy.

  5. Headache says:

    I used to have my doubts, Joe, but you were right about Christine all along. What a slimy sellout she is. The garbage spouted here is all about validating China’s paranoia and bullying behaviour while waving away HK’s legitimate expectations and grievances. Bad enough to have been extruded from a soft-power party mouthpiece.

  6. Stanley Lieber says:

    How do you say “Quisling” in Cantonese?

  7. reductio says:

    From the Amazon page:

    “This book is based on our thoughts of what a new Hong Kong story might be: a story about “us” and “you,” the people who care about Hong Kong, not an impersonal “he/she/it” story–a story, moreover, to be worked out between Hong Kong and mainland China and no one else.”

    What does this even mean?

  8. The Mothers of Detention says:

    @reductio

    “Fembot in a Wet Xi-Shart” from the album “Zhou’s Garage”:

    “And Christina Loh is the kind of red-blooded Communist supporter who will do anything — I said ANYTHING — for fifty bucks.”
    “I really need the fifty bucks, you know? I gotta get home.”
    “Yeah, I know Xi Dada is waiting for you at home in the toolshed… That’s right, you heard right: our big prize tonight is fifty Hong Kong Dollars to the girl with the most convincing Communist propaganda!!”
    “And here comes the ice-pick in the forehead!”
    “Ooooh! Ha ha ha.”
    “Million laughs, Christina. Anyway… good golly what a mess, she’s totally sold-out, totally —”
    “I Love it. Ha ha ha.”
    “Yeah, totally committed to the fifty bucks… That’s it, just step into the spotlight and let the guys get a good look at you, honey.”
    “Here I am!”
    “Whaddya say fellas? Nice reassuring propaganda? Now Christina, how’s about shaking around a little?”
    “Ooo! Ooo!”
    “Oh my goodness! Look at her go!”
    “Oh! I’m dancing! Oooo!”
    “Ain’t this what living is really all about?”
    ‘Oh! ha ha ha!”
    “Here’s your fifty bucks, Christina.”
    “Oh great! Now I can go home.”
    “Home is where the heart is.”
    “In Beijing!”
    (Cue instrumental track “In Beijing” segue to “Why does it hurt when I Xi?”)

    With apologies to Frank Zappa.

  9. reductio says:

    @ The Mothers

    Superb. Frank – definitely a muse for our times.

  10. Reader says:

    Roll up, roll up – it’s pantomime season everyone!

    This year, Good Princess Christine, who once led a charmed life in the High Lands of the West, returns from self-imposed five-year exile in the Borders and declares (to gasps of disbelief from the audience) that she still believes Middle Ground can be a haven of peace and tranquillity for ever more.

    But the wise burghers see through the deception, and even those who had yearned for her return to save them realise she has turned herself over to serve as handmaiden to the Evil Witch Carrie and her liege, the all-powerful Xiauron, Master of the North, as he manoeuvres to bring all living things under his sway.

    And it all ends with Princess Christine marrying nice Uncle Ronny, but damned for eternity to produce sterile offspring, while the Evil Witch Carrie completes her journey to the Blessed Realm and is subsumed into Xiauron’s miasma to disappear without trace.

    The Nine Angels of Occupy are supposed to sing, but don’t, and the play closes with Xiauron stomping around the stage, tearing down the set, as the children cheer.

  11. Knownot says:

    The Nine Angels of Occupy are supposed to sing, but don’t . . . but suddenly! The Principal Boy and his or her same-sex spouse appear and sing, “Oh where is the visa?” “Over there!” the children cry. “No, there!” “No, behind you!” “There!” And at last, everybody sings, “Here is the visa!”

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