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Thread: What's wrong with Hong Kong (and how to fix it)

  1. #151
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    Quote Originally Posted by DOR View Post
    Start with the assumption that anything the protesters want will be denied by Beijing, and you get exactly zero.
    It is a non-starter, and both the HKSAR Government and the Liaison Office understand that. Therefore, they do not reject any and all demands.
    Indeed, they have already agreed to the first and most important one: the extradition bill was withdrawn.

    On fiscal matters, offering a tax break on income generated during a recession is pretty lame.
    Given the massive structural budget surpluses (average 3% of GDP in the last 15 years), cutting tax rates makes sense.
    Given that 80% of the population, and probably 70% of the companies don't make enough to pay taxes, eliminating a whole slew of fees makes sense.
    And, since most people make important decisions based on long-term expectations, making these changes permanent -- and not one-off, year after year -- makes sense.

    Belt and Road demands lip service, and Hong Kong provides that, in spades.
    How about a suggestion we came up with in 2003, which was to establish a world-class infectious disease detection, treatment, and prevention center?
    Nah, once the panic subsides, they'll lose interest, again.
    *sigh*
    Would the pro-democracy camp accept universal suffrage, but with the chief executive still requiring Mainland approval?

    Is there a compromise with which CCP would feel safe about Hong Kong?

  2. #152
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hboGYT View Post
    Would the pro-democracy camp accept universal suffrage, but with the chief executive still requiring Mainland approval?

    Is there a compromise with which CCP would feel safe about Hong Kong?

    In 2003, the NPC said HK could directly elect the CE 2012. No changes to the nomination process were offered, so that qualifies as your scenario. The opposition said no.
    In 2007, the NPC says there’s still a chance for 2012. The opposition said no.
    In 2009, the SAR Government proposed a step-by-step approach to universal suffrage that included making the legislature more representative, and direct CE elections after an ‘acceptable’ candidate is nominated. The opposition said no.
    In 2014, the NPC said the 2017 CE election can be by universal suffrage, but only between candidates who “love the country and love Hong Kong.” The opposition said no.

    Up until the violent protests started last year, it was all about Beijing saying you can have universal suffrage, but not all at once. We need to feel comfortable that you will put national interests ahead of local interests. Because we (Beijing) haven't a clue about how Hong Kong actually thinks and votes (no anti-China candidate would get more than about 25% of the vote, even today), we (Beijing) will vet candidates for loyalty.

    The opposition wanted everything, instantly, and refused to even consider the possibility of a step-by-step process.

    Since then, all bets are off.
    One Country, Two Systems is widely seen as a failure all the way around, and now Beijing is just looking for a way to maintain stability.
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  3. #153
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    While the world was otherwise occupied ...

    On March 17, 2020, Hong Kong was for the first time ranked second on the Heritage Foundation’s Index of Economic Freedom. That ended an uninterrupted 25-year run as No. 1 world-wide, and was blamed by the government on social unrest (https://www.info.gov.hk/gia/general/...0031700546.htm, accessed March 17, 2020). According to the Index, Hong Kong suffered a 6.6% drop in Monetary Freedom (from 86.4 points to 80.7) and an 11.1% drop (from 90 to 80) in Investment Freedom. The report is here: https://www.heritage.org/index/download.

    Late on the night of March 17-18, 2020, China revoked the visas of at least a dozen foreign journalists, and specified that they would not be allowed to work in the Mainland, Hong Kong or Macau. The ban on working in the SARs directly violates those juridictions’ Basic Laws. The move followed a US decision to restrict the number of people eligible to work for China’s state-run media in the United States.

    On March 26, 2020, the 27th Global Financial Centers Index ranked Hong Kong sixth overall, down three places from the previous year. An SAR spokesman blamed the results on misperceptions about social unrest by people outside of the city who voted on-line. The report is here, https://www.longfinance.net/programm...centres-index/, and the response here, https://www.info.gov.hk/gia/general/...0032700404.htm.

    Police arrested Cheng Lai-king (鄭麗琼) for “seditious intent” after the Central and Western District Councilor breached a court injunction against naming a police officer said to have shot an Indonesia journalist with a non-lethal projectile. The offense, which comes under colonial era laws long thought to be obsolete, carries a punishment of up to two years in jail. https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/...rested-alleged.

    On April 19, 15 senior – and politically moderate – opposition figures were arrested, including 81 year-old Martin Lee. https://hongkongfp.com/2020/04/20/ho...ld-be-ashamed/. Ten days later, localist activists Edward Leung’s appeal against a six-year jail sentence for rioting in 2016 was rejected. https://news.rthk.hk/rthk/en/compone...3-20200429.htm.
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  4. #154
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Not the best time for protest



    Not seeing a whole lot of body distancing here. Not even from the cops. All in masks though.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 03 May 20, at 01:20.

  5. #155
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    Not the best time for protest



    Not seeing a whole lot of body distancing here. Not even from the cops. All in masks though.
    You won't see a lot of body distancing in other places that have beat back COVID-19, either.
    Zero new cases yesterday.
    This is what relaxing the lock-down looks like.
    Get used to it.
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  6. #156
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Not much to get used to if this is what behaviour post crisis looks like : )

    We need to prepare for a long fight, a new socially-distanced normal, potentially for years to come. Prof Neil Ferguson
    This is what i'm referring to. I don't see a new socially-distanced normal a mere three months after this disease in HK.

    What i also see completely missing is fear. ZERO fear of this disease.

    These people would give those protesters in the US a run for their money easy : D

  7. #157
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    HK falls off the cliff: Q-1 2020 GDP

    With -6.8% in China and no growth (+0.3% YoY) in the US, Hong Kong was never going to have a good time, and given that it was hit earlier than most other places, the figures might be useful for guessing who else is due for a slap in the face.

    GDP -8.9% year-on-year.

    Hong Kong first released quarterly GDP figures in 1973, so we have almost 44 years of data. The GDP figure is worst-ever (previous lowest: -8.6%, Q-3 1998). So, too, is -10.2% private consumption expenditure (previous: Q-4, 1974 -8.9%), -37.8% services exports (beating -24.7% in Q-4 2019) and -25.4% in services imports (worse than Q-1 2009’s -21.5%.

    At an estimated HK$615 billion in constant 2016 numbers, GDP has fallen back to where it was four years ago, in Q-1 2016 ($614.1 billion). Capital investment and services exports lost 11 years (Q-1 2010), and services imports 15 years (Q-2 2005).

    By way of contrast, Singapore reported -2.2% GDP in Q-1.

    https://www.info.gov.hk/gia/general/...0050400363.htm
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  8. #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by DOR View Post
    With -6.8% in China and no growth (+0.3% YoY) in the US, Hong Kong was never going to have a good time, and given that it was hit earlier than most other places, the figures might be useful for guessing who else is due for a slap in the face.

    GDP -8.9% year-on-year.

    Hong Kong first released quarterly GDP figures in 1973, so we have almost 44 years of data. The GDP figure is worst-ever (previous lowest: -8.6%, Q-3 1998). So, too, is -10.2% private consumption expenditure (previous: Q-4, 1974 -8.9%), -37.8% services exports (beating -24.7% in Q-4 2019) and -25.4% in services imports (worse than Q-1 2009’s -21.5%.

    At an estimated HK$615 billion in constant 2016 numbers, GDP has fallen back to where it was four years ago, in Q-1 2016 ($614.1 billion). Capital investment and services exports lost 11 years (Q-1 2010), and services imports 15 years (Q-2 2005).

    By way of contrast, Singapore reported -2.2% GDP in Q-1.

    https://www.info.gov.hk/gia/general/...0050400363.htm
    What has the CCP planned for HK after the expiry of its 50-year pledge?

    Also, why doesn't the CCP just give HK some more land to lower the housing prices?

  9. #159
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hboGYT View Post
    What has the CCP planned for HK after the expiry of its 50-year pledge?

    Also, why doesn't the CCP just give HK some more land to lower the housing prices?
    1. Nothing.
    It has never been a topic of conversation, official or otherwise (as far as we know).
    The Basic Law says, "Here's a list of things Hong Kong cannot do, and things the rest of China will not do, for 50 years."
    That's all.

    2. It isn't about the amount of land available.
    About 40% of Hong Kong is Country Park, what we in the US call National Parks. Another significant portion (10%?) is dramatically under-utilized land, formerly used for agriculture but now used for extremely low value-added activities like storage for shipping containers or auto junk yards. In addition, a large injection of usable land would greatly undermine the largest investments some 30% of the population ever made: their homes.
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  10. #160
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    Beijing will enact Hong Kong National Security Law

    Chapter II Relationship between the Central Authorities and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region

    Article 23 The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region shall enact laws on its own to prohibit any act of treason, secession, sedition, subversion against the Central People's Government, or theft of state secrets, to prohibit foreign political organizations or bodies from conducting political activities in the Region, and to prohibit political organizations or bodies of the Region from establishing ties with foreign political organizations or bodies.

    Source: https://www.basiclaw.gov.hk/en/basic...chapter_2.html

    What this means is that unlike every other sub-national jurisdiction in the world – accept the Macau Special Administrative Region next door – Hong Kong has both the right and the responsibility to enact its own national security law. It must protect national interests by outlawing things like sedition, insurrection, treason, and subversion. The implication is that if it does not, then Beijing will apply its own laws within the SAR.

    Because of the failure of the political milieu in Hong Kong, that is now the sad reality. Hong Kong is no longer trusted to protect the national interest, and therefore the sovereign feels that it must act.

    Source: Cheung, Gary, “Two Sessions 2020: Beijing will announce resolution for national security legislation for Hong Kong to proscribe secession, foreign interference and terrorism,” SCMP May 21, 2020, https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/...ush-article-23.
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  11. #161
    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    I think the deck has always been stacked against Hong Kong and all that was needed was someone who would actually close the door on them like Xi. I feel they were in a no win situation and were naive way back then.

  12. #162
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    one country, two systems is dead.

    that Xi is not even willing to put a fig leaf on it means he's also slamming the door on using that formula with Taiwan.
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

  13. #163
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    Quote Originally Posted by astralis View Post
    one country, two systems is dead.

    that Xi is not even willing to put a fig leaf on it means he's also slamming the door on using that formula with Taiwan.
    When Ye Jianying originally laid out the concept, 1C2S was specifically for Taiwan; it was adapted for Hong Kong -- and much later, Macau -- only in the early 1980s.
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  14. #164
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DOR View Post
    Chapter II Relationship between the Central Authorities and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region

    Article 23 The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region shall enact laws on its own to prohibit any act of treason, secession, sedition, subversion against the Central People's Government, or theft of state secrets, to prohibit foreign political organizations or bodies from conducting political activities in the Region, and to prohibit political organizations or bodies of the Region from establishing ties with foreign political organizations or bodies.

    Source: https://www.basiclaw.gov.hk/en/basic...chapter_2.html

    What this means is that unlike every other sub-national jurisdiction in the world – accept the Macau Special Administrative Region next door – Hong Kong has both the right and the responsibility to enact its own national security law. It must protect national interests by outlawing things like sedition, insurrection, treason, and subversion. The implication is that if it does not, then Beijing will apply its own laws within the SAR.

    Because of the failure of the political milieu in Hong Kong, that is now the sad reality. Hong Kong is no longer trusted to protect the national interest, and therefore the sovereign feels that it must act.

    Source: Cheung, Gary, “Two Sessions 2020: Beijing will announce resolution for national security legislation for Hong Kong to proscribe secession, foreign interference and terrorism,” SCMP May 21, 2020, https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/...ush-article-23.
    Translation : Beijing decided to override all HK laws and impose their own

  15. #165
    Defense ProfessionalSenior Contributor tbm3fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DOR View Post
    When Ye Jianying originally laid out the concept, 1C2S was specifically for Taiwan; it was adapted for Hong Kong -- and much later, Macau -- only in the early 1980s.
    What is curious to me is that China considers Taiwan part of China. Usually their MO was that the land was once somehow connected to China because Chinese were there, or settled there, or had a footprint there in history long ago. Yet history shows the indigenous Taiwanese were there 5500 years ago before any Han Chinese. These people are Austronesian with ties to other Austronesian peoples and none to the Han Chinese. I see that headhunting was practiced by some of the indigenous. Sounds very New Guinea. I would assume China believes it belongs to her because the Han started to migrate there in the 17th Century. For that matter Chinese were in the Philippines around the 9th century interacting with those Austronesian people who are now called Piliinong Tsino and are one of the largest overseas Chinese communities.

    I assume bringing Taiwan back into his fold, to save face (how so ?), is worth it even if he has to kill military and civilians (Han) on the island to do so. Of course I am being logical and about what is right which Xi cares not one bit about. Question is would he go that far as I don't believe Taiwan would go quietly at all. He is building warships but what about transports for amphibious landings?

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