Friday, 22 November 2019

One of the first things I learnt in Cultural Revolutionary China was....

.... not to ask a question, when you suspect the answer  will be “no”.

Better to ask forgiveness than permission.

This was in the 1970s, the fag end of China’s Cultural Revolution. By that time, all the officials we met were super sensitive, super cautious. If you asked, for example, if you might leave Beijing, for a train trip to a nearby town, the answer would be “no”.

Better make the trip, and ask forgiveness later (if they catch you!).

In international relations it’s known as “strategic ambiguity”
We have had such strategic ambiguity here in Hong Kong, over the issue of just where the line is drawn for what can be judged here in Hong Kong, by our High Court, and what has to go to Beijing for National People’s Congress interpretation.

We’ve had fine, ambiguous, understanding on this since 1997.  It’s called “flexibility”.

And now the pan-Dems have gone and screwed it up.  By challenging the ban on face masks in Hong Kong, getting a determination by the High Court, they’ve prodded Beijing to weigh in, put its foot down and say “this in our area of responsibility, not yours”.  Who has this helped? No one.

But that’s the pan-Dems all over. They’ve been stirring up the demos, and stirring up the violence.  For their own petty, partisan political aims.  Shame on them, for not caring about our broader society and our broader interests. Both of which they’ve damaged.

Again, the redoubtable Alex Lo says it best:
Not too long ago, a retired top judge warned that Hong Kong’s judicial independence faced “a storm of unprecedented ferocity”. We are now in the eye of the storm.
The pan-democrats opened a can of worms by taking the authorities to court for using emergency powers to ban the wearing of face masks amid escalating violence by anti-government rioters over the past six months. They won. To make a long story short, the court ruled that the ban breached provisions in the Basic Law, the city’s mini-constitution.
That in turn provoked a furious rebuttal from the nation’s top legislative body, which claimed that Hong Kong courts don’t have the powerto invalidate local laws by ruling them unconstitutional. That power rests entirely with the National People’s Congress Standing Committee (NPCSC).
No judges in Hong Kong doubt that the NPCSC has that final say. But it has never questioned the power of top local courts to make such rulings – until now.  Read on.
I will be happy to vote on Sunday 24 November, and vote for the independent candidate against our long-term Civic Party candidate. The Civic party has its hands very dirty in stirring the pot, stirring up hatred of the government, stirring up violence against anyone who disagrees.  Sadly the Civic party rep here has “rusted on” voters. For the life of me I don’t know why, but there it is. I’ll certainly be out voting for Jonathan Chow to represent our little bit of the “Islands District”, in these District Council elections.