Monday, 12 August 2013

Lewis: "Global Times" wishes to cool down

Written By Lewis
Translated By Chen-t'ang

The editorial of Global Times (GT), the Party's mouthpiece, is very popular in China, because comparing to the People's Daily, GT is playing a more radical, nationalistic and hawk-style pioneer role.
After the faith of Communism has fallen, "nationalism" has become the common language between CCP and Chinese people. GT absorbs the atmosphere of Mao's times, creating a feeling of containment of foreign aggression, and the thought "US Imperialist will not cease from their wild ambition to subjugate China" is still bought.
The hidden meaning is promoting unity for Chinese people against foreign aggression under CCP.

GT commented the July 1st protest in HK, pointing out CCP shall act commonly towards opposition voices in HK and shall avoid "interact once by once" with them;
on 30th July, the Japanese vice foreign minister visited China and hoped to have a Sino-Japanese summit conference, and GT has similar thoughts as before.
The editorial said China shall give a cold shoulder to Japan's diplomatic action, and needs not to improve Sino-Japanese relationship that quickly.
Its 'standpoint' is that the strength of China is greater than that of Japan: "Japan dares not to confront China traditionally in terms of strength, which is growing weaker and weaker,
and they cannot afford the political cost of doing so."

It is not uncommon to see these cocky tones on GT, yet such discourse is not encouraging "premature foreign policy", but rather encouraging a spritual victory with nationalistic characteristics, and not a war between China and Japan.
In fact, the State Council of China is determined to audit the indebtedness of local governments, showing the high risk of burst in economic and social order, and thus China cannot afford to start a war.
Japan has so much moves, using little tactics to confront China, showing CCP's incompetence as they show no, or a few, responses. So GT is not actually spreading hawk-style thoughts but rather cooling off for CCP: the CCP government is having a smart move while holding still! CCP leaders are like having a chess purposefully,
using the name of nationalism to cool off the fire of nationalism.

Because the CCP knows that the controversy on the East China Sea is a double-edge sword: if well-controlled, it could be a "nationalistic viagra"; but otherwise the CCP's tolerance would be chicken.
The education of CCP creates a generation deeply impacted by "nationalistic passion", and there could always be side-effects. So the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands activists are always, or mostly organised by official organisations.
If there are activists who are not willing to "cooperate", CCP will crack them down.

Lots of analysis says that the "lost temper" of China is similar to that of Japan and Germany before WWII. When the myth of communist giant has fallen, China has nothing but the aggrieved feeling of "the entire world has wronged us",
and this in turn has become the foundation of foreign aggression. In China, similar thoughts are widely popular. Unlike People's Daily, which the public would not treat it seriously, GT is truely acclaimed by the Chinese public.
CCP knows its status, but the 'angry youths' are 'passionate' irrespective of the status of China. The impact of extremist rightists in Japan are not that great, but there are a lot of Chinese angry youths. Why does some hot-blooded local middle-age only assume Japan as the sole militarism country?

Monday, 5 August 2013

Jasper Tsang: Having no alternatives - on universal suffrage

Originally at: http://www.am730.com.hk/article.php?article=166519
By Jasper Tsang Yok-sing
Translated by Chen-t'ang

Democracy is not a perfect system, but we have no other alternatives now in Hong Kong. Democracy is the system that the majority of citizens is willing to accept and reply on. As the Chinese central government has pledged to Hongkongers that there will be universal suffrage for Chief Executive on 2017 and all LegCo seats in 2020, then they cannot back down. We must implement universal suffrage according to this schedule.

An election mechanism with consent from all parties has to be set, if universal suffrage for CE has to be implemented. Everyone knows it, but the point hinges on the nomination: how to decide who can run the election? Some people think that the nomination mechanism can act as a sieve to weed out unacceptable candidates to the central government. But is this possible? If the the SARG's proposal of the universal suffrage for CE is a "fake/bogus suffrage", they must be facing strong opposition, and thus cannot obtain two thirds support from the LegCo.

Furthermore, even if the weeding out mechanism can be used, if there exist a candidate with lots of support and without the acceptance of the central government, it will be politically impossible if the nomination committee weed him out. Last year, every candidate tried their best to obtain support from the public, and improved their reputation in the CE Election last year, which even was not a universal suffrage. It is because every candidate knows that the election committee members cannot be at loggerheads with the public's will to support the one with low reputation. For the same reason, the nomination committee cannot weed out candidate(s) with high reputation without letting the public to choose it.

If the SARG insist on proposing a way that 'guarantee not letting the opposition party to run', not only is it in vain, but also aggravated the situation. An obviously unfair proposal will only disgruntle the public, and the opposition party can obtain more sympathy and support. If the government really do so, and the establishment camp backed it, then they will be besieged in the LegCo election.



In my opinion, anyway, we have to walk on the road of universal suffrage.

For those who do not believe in democracy and worry that universal suffrage would put HK in a worse situation, they shall face the fact, rather than trying their best to design a 'risk-free' election rules. Do more preparations on what they apprehend.


For those who support universal suffrage, they shall know that although we often say universal suffrage is the "ultimate goal", but it certainly is not the end of political development of HK, but rather the beginning of democracy being under the trial of fire. Universal suffrage is only the first step; there is a longer, harder way to go in pursuit of a successful and good democratic system.

Sunday, 4 August 2013

陶傑英文專欄︰德國人低估了

文/陶傑
譯/鎮棠
原載於/http://hk-magazine.com/city-living/column/german-understatement

德國人素來不以幽默感著稱,但近來德國《明鏡》 週刊或者會改變你的想法。

編輯訪問了巴伐利亞一間酒店,問問他們中國旅客如何令他們的生意「火紅」起來。有人向編輯展示了一本德文小冊子《如何令中國人遠離此處》,低調地在前台派發給本地和歐洲顧客。無論在華格納演奏會聽到難以制止的中國觀眾大聲呼叫,又或者鄰桌一群旅行團打嗝大聲得如敲鑼打鼓般,小冊子均提醒西方顧客「不應感到受冒犯」,因為是「中國習俗」來的啊。還有見到中國遊客捏捏拿拿那些麵包、牛角包、奶油蛋卷,然後放回原處,歐洲顧客都不應「大驚小怪」。負責管理酒店的部門建議歐洲客人如果翌晨想清清靜靜吃個早餐,應選擇於8點後進餐,因為可避免6點至7點半期間大批中國旅客,然後酒店員工需要半小時,收拾殘局,然後重奪主權。

雖然一名德國侍應以「多元文化」之名容忍他們,「不過他們走了之後我便安樂了」。有此等評語的報道出版後,立刻惹來德國自由學派和部分中國網民的聲討--種族歧視。若果如此包容、溫和及友好,並尊重「中國傳統」的提示都可以被說成是「種族歧視」(否則也可粗俗地拿隻中指出來說「滾回你的國家去」),那我們正活在一個顛倒是非黑白的世界裡。二戰後,德國人尚未洗脫「種族歧視」的道德罪疚感和偏執感,仍然過份自我約束和審查。即使一份陳列事實,說明德國酒店如何教育本地人容忍「中國文化」的報道都被左派意識形態的獨裁思想劃成是政治不正確的新聞報道,是對弱等並不斷入侵的種族逼害的前奏--那麼新聞自由將會收窄,這類報道將不復存在。酒店管理方(又或者是《明鏡》編輯)曾嘗試用最隱晦而又安全的方式講出對「種族歧視」的恐懼,但或會引起中國全體旅客的杯葛。但這正是德國人「企硬」的關鍵場合︰中國人仍然會來的,因為去賓士(中國譯奔馳)廠房仍是夢寐以求的。

許多日本酒店採取了某種種族隔離措施︰中國遊客只許在早餐用膳區劃出的一個隱暗小角落。這也許會勾起德國人歷史的神經。但也許是時候再用了,如果可行的話。