With an aberrant government, turn anger into energy

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Just as I thought news is quietening down, the Chief Executive gives us some more talking points to further bring down his sinking popularity.

Ten years ago when it was said that C Y Leung would be interested in running for the chief executive, there were already a lot of rumours as to his negative personality. With my background training in procedures and evidence, I asked for proof. Give me some examples as to sort of things that he had said or done, don’t judge on rumours. The interesting thing is that he didn’t have that many friends. Not many people could claim to really know him or point to anything concrete. The most “concrete” example I heard was that if Beijing was to give him instructions to arrest 10 people, he would arrest 100 just to be sure. That, I said, was not proof. Later there was the high profile court case where a judge found C Y Leung to be an unreliable witness. But then you may say that is only the opinion of one judge, give him the benefit of the doubt.

I was prepared for his conservatism. I never expected him to be forthcoming in constitutional reform. But at least I expected him to be smart. I was totally unprepared for his stupidity.

He always blames the media and the democrats for giving him a hard time. But with the trouble that his allies and his “fans” have been giving him, he really doesn’t need enemies. Recently, I come to realize that he doesn’t even need his friends to give him trouble; he is his own worst enemy. He digs his own grave.

For example, even the blundering Secretary for Education Eddie Ng had the sense to say in August that the teacher Lam incident should be laid to rest, but the following week C Y Leung stoked up fire again by making a high profile speech at the Yuen Long open forum ordering Eddie Ng to make a report into the teacher Lam incident and by demanding apology for his two exco members who resigned after personal scandals.

Events this month are also telling. I find it incredible that C Y Leung would even consider hiring Andrew Fung as his new information co-ordinator. How can he blame anyone for the members of his cabinet falling off one after another if he has no judgment as to the type of people he appoints in the first place?

The most charitable view to be taken as to his embarrassment at the APEC summit is that green and inexperienced in international affairs, C Y Leung was no match for the cunning Aquino III of the Philippines. The CE’s blunder, coming 3 years after the Manila hostage crisis, re-opens wound.

But what can you say about the most recent decision of the CE-in-Council not to give a free TV licence to Ricky Wong’s Hong Kong Television Network! The decision broke every rule in the book. It runs counter to the long announced government policy that there is no cap on the number of free TV licences; it runs counter to the commitment to encourage creative industries; it runs counter to the principle of free market competition. Ricky Wong sold his previous broadband business for $5.3billion to buy land for a station, to recruit hundreds of employees including top notch specialists in the field and to pre shoot hundreds of hours of drama series (the trial run of one episode on youtube attracted 700,000 hits), all in readiness for the green light. The Communications Authority (previously the Broadcasting Authority) made a positive recommendation two years ago. The public waited – impatiently. The government procrastinated – inexplicably. Finally the decision came this week - a licence to the other two applicants but not Wong. The government has ousted the contender with the most sincerity and commitment. No explanation is given other than “a basket of criteria”. There is no appeal.

To give all this a positive spin, I finally find something I can thank C Y Leung for. In our fight for real universal suffrage, it is not easy to explain to the general public the difference between real and fake universal suffrage. Why should there be no prescreening for the CE candidate in 2017? Now I can point to the example of the free TV licence and say: here is the small circle of people who think that the public does not know how to choose between different TV stations, since the market can only support 4 TV stations and no more, the elite in the CE-in-council will pre-choose for us. Politics can affect daily lives. To compound the irony, the government line for denying the free licence to Ricky Wong is said to be a “gradual and orderly” opening up of the market, the same words appearing in Articles 45 and 68 of the Basic Law on the implementation of universal suffrage. Yes, you can wait, your time will come……..meanwhile Hong Kong Television Network has announced its painful decision to lay off 320 employees.

I don’t know about you, but for a long time, when I go home after work and feel bored looking at the TV, I feel ANGRY. I feel the government owes us and owes us big, for denying competition, for stunting creativity and for WASTING TIME.

Ricky Wong asks if there is still justice in Hong Kong. I say don’t mix up Hong Kong with the Hong Kong government. This government does not represent me. We cannot stand by and watch this government destroy the Hong Kong we know. This Sunday, 3 pm, I am once again going on protest march. With an aberrant government, we have to turn anger into energy.

 

Audrey Eu

 

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