Tag Archives: politics

Patten’s last stand: must watch Hong Kong documentary

11 Apr

chris pattenI’ve just finished watching The Last Governor for the second time. The first was in 1997 when it was broadcast following the teary handover of Hong Kong back to China.

Seeing it now, from the comfort of my 6th floor hovel in Sai Ying Pun, has turned what I thought at the time was a rather dry documentary about Chris Patten’s five years in charge of the colony into a fascinating portrait of a soon-to-be-SAR afflicted with what amounts to a massive personality disorder.

The biggest surprise of all was Patten, who emerges from it a genuinely nice chap who literally couldn’t do right for doing wrong. A man of political conviction in stark contrast to the obsequious kowtowing diplomats who preceded him as governor. Watching this I’m not surprised he was greeted on his return to Honkers recently like some kind of messiah.

On the one side he was accused by pro-China dicks of riding roughshod over the Joint Declaration written up by Britain and China in ’84 in trying to force through some very mild pro-democracy changes before the big handover.

On the other side, pro-democrats basically accused him of being China’s bitch and endangering the livelihoods of the locals post-97.

Vitriolic personal insults were hurled at him and his family throughout the five years but the louder his detractors shrieked, the more calm and unflappable he seemed to become.

In fact, Patten only showed signs of slipping once, when in a private scene, after 80 rounds of negotiations with the Chinese over a minor technical point, he calls them “a bunch of wankers”.

The villains of the piece, for me, were not the Chinese – they acted true to form, channeling Sun Tzu at all times to lie, disrupt and discomfort their opponents (the UK).

It was the spineless shower of businessmen who jumped ship when they thought supporting the UK would put them out of favour with Beijing. Pretending to be the true upholders of the Hong Kong way of life this loathsome clique of immensely privileged taipans are truly a disgrace to Britain, Hong Kong and China.

They continue to hold the SAR to ransom even now – making themselves richer still while one fifth of the former colony lives in poverty and spreading fear, uncertainty and doubt whenever their vested interests are threatened.

Watch it now for some spectacularly candid behind-the-scenes moments from the last days of Britain’s last major colony, days when politicians told their press advisors what was going to happen next rather than the other way round.

The final takeway for me (no pun intended) is that the current members of Legco – although they may have lost the clipped public school accents of 17 years ago – are still debating exactly the same issues they were in the late 90s.

That, unfortunately, is what China is going to try and keep them doing until the end of time.

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China sending out mixed skirt signals

17 Jul

stripperWhat do you get if you cross summer-time in Hong Kong with a group of morally retarded politicians? Answer: a list of the most dangerous places in the SAR for women to walk around in short skirts.

Yup, the pro-Beijing Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hong Kong, or rather its drearily titled Women’s Affairs Committee, has released its latest list on Peeping Tom black spots.

The list, which incidentally would also serve as an indispensable guide for dirty old men in the region, details quite specifically the escalators, glass walkways and staircases where scantily clad locals are most at risk.

Rather hilariously, the now iconic Apple Store staircase designed by Steve Jobs himself comes in for a bashing by the DAB – is nothing sacred?

I’ve never heard of this kind of moral crusade by a political party in the West and can only imagine the DAB espouses the kind of retarded conservative values that would rather women wore ankle length coats at all times to avoid these kind of problems in the first place.

After a bit of digging, I found that it’s been releasing these lists for at least three years – every time with the same old spiel – camera wielding perverts are on the rise and represent a real and present danger to the honour of our young ladies.

It’s often said that China is a nation of contradictions, well, looking in the Shanghai Daily this week this became immediately clear.

It reported news that the gloriously named Guilin Merryland Resort in southern China is currently offering half price entry to women wearing skirts shorter than 38cm.

Apparently, local TV footage has shown long lines of female visitors queuing up for the discount, waiting to be seen to by a member of staff holding a ruler.

The park is also said to run a “water-splashing festival” during which visitors are encouraged to throw water over each other, including of course the skimpy-skirted women.

China. You’re sending out mixed signals here – do you want girls to wear short skirts in summer or not?

Maybe this is what they meant by ‘one country, two systems’.