Wednesday, 30 December 2015

[Photo Album] On Filipina Domestic Workers

On Fililpina Domestic Workers
Translated by Chen-t'ang 鎮棠, written by Jinky Tam Hoi-yan

文/圖: Tam Hoi Yan,Jinky在玄關裡,我們可以看到一般人看不到的事。身為香港、菲律賓的混血兒,我看到很多香港人和菲律賓人都看不到的事。婆婆和媽媽開辦僱傭公司已有十多年,她們都是菲律賓人,我自小看到很多傭人在香港的生活與感...
Posted by Hoi Yan Tam on Tuesday, 29 December 2015

In the vestibule, we can see a lot of things others don't. As a mixed of Hong Kong and the Philippines, I see a lot of things other Hongkongers and Filipinos don't.

My granny and my mom started a maid employment agency for over a decade. They are all Filipinas, and so I witness many of their stories.

My mum has a good friend Ester, who has been a foreign domestic worker in Hong Kong for 7 years. As her son wishes to be a pilot, she works hard in Hong Kong to earn a living and help her son to fulfill his dreams. Ester said, “Last time I was back. He was playing computer games, and I said, 'If you are not studying hard, I will not earn money in Hong Kong. This is a waste of time.' Then he started to revise.” She could not hold her tears when she spoke of her family members.

Ester could be a lawyer, but her family lacks money. Ester was the best in her school with flying colours, and many teachers appreciated her. Yet, her family could not afford her fees anymore, and her dream subsided. However, she works hard in Hong Kong for her son's dream. “I don't want him to follow me, an example with ability but without a chance.” You can feel that she is different and more independent than other Hongkongers.

Unlike other domestic workers, she would not sit on the ground in the park. “We have dignity too. There are seats in McDonald's and Starbucks, and benches in parks. Why should we sit on the ground?” She understands that Hongkongers do not like going to these streets on Sunday, as there are so many workers, but Hongkongers should understand that they have no other places to go. When they work 6 days a week at home, they naturally want to go somewhere else. Some say they are annoying, loud and dirty. But they are more optimistic and blissful with laughters. They are happy even if they earn a little, and even buy things for their families back home. Hongkongers might wonder why do they often take photos in front of brand name shops? They told me, “We just want them to know we are good in Hong Kong.”

Monday, 28 December 2015

When A Pretty Election Candidate Becomes an Offence

When A Pretty Election Candidate Becomes an Offence
Translated by Samuel L., edited by Chen-tang, written by Yat Ming Ging Yan (一鳴驚人)
Original: http://polymerhk.com/articles/2015/12/17/25526/


At the age of 24, Yau Wai-ching is young and pretty, grabbing much attention from the general public ever since her electioneering campaign. But, being pretty does not mean she can please everyone. First had Yau Wai-ching been lambasted, as participating in ‘a pageant contest’ but not ‘the district council election’. Faning Yim, a member of the League of Social Democrats, further put her jealousy into words, claiming that ‘let’s turn the LegCo election into a pageant contest’ as soon as she knew that Yau Wai-ching would run for LegCo Election. The criticisms just go on.

Their hidden agenda is obvious. To put it simpler, they claimed that Yau Wai-ching is but a gift-wrapped candidate. While Yau Wai-ching is only a ‘newbie’ to politics who has not shown her political aspiration, how can people draw to such conclusion of ‘being unqualified’ merely based on her appearance?

Even so, is appearance ever related to an election? Shall only an ugly person be qualified to be elected as a councillor? Putting the line of ‘it’s no offence to be ugly’ from the Cantonese movie The God of Cookery into this case, a pretty face shall never be an offence.

Being pretty or handsome is susceptible to be discredited by opponents. Taking the Canadian PM election as an example, the Conservative Party once launched an attack on Justin Trudeau, teasing him as a 43-year-old ‘cutie’ who was not ready for being the Prime Minister. Trudeau, handsome, tall and rich, yet paid no regards to rumours and slanders and excelled in his campaign, eventually defeated Stephen Harper, the 56-year-old Conservative Party incumbent, and has become the new Prime Minister of Canada.

Sometimes, it is not a big deal for an average Joe to be jealous of a prettier, or better person in private, which is no big deal. Yet, such ill-founded and impolite open criticisms shall not only fail to discredit Yau Wai-ching but also show their own jealousy and grudge. ‘The more the jealousy, the poorer their conduct’.

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Adaptation of Laws: When CCP replaces the Crown

Adaptation of Laws: When CCP replaces the Crown
Translated by Gordon C., written by Politic Mood
Original: https://www.facebook.com/politicmood/photos/a.925355774214046.1073741857.349165895166373/927166840699606/


[Chinese only - Vote record]
“We don’t agree with fighting violence with valour. If the government was overthrown, it might give the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) a perfect pretext to take over.” So who’s the one who let the PLA in? Internet Article 23, we still have 8 days to go. 

In the Adaptation of Laws (Military Preference) Bill 2010, the scope of amendment has been far beyond that of adaptation of laws. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is able to grant special right to its garrison in Hong Kong, including land purchase, legal exemptions for military vehicles, and the removal of content where the garrison has to be governed by local laws. After the Bill was passed, “armed forces of the Crown” would be replaced by “the Chinese People’s Liberation Army”, the articles concerning “Her Majesty’s Government” would be replaced by “the Central People’s Government”, and “crown immunity” would be replaced by “sovereign immunity”. These adaptations cover a wide scope, including jury system, funeral parlour, rating, registration of persons, transport, telecommunications, libel, dangerous drugs, summary offences, criminal offence, weapons, and pilotage, at a total number of 85 articles. The scope is so wide the adaptations even cover ordinances concerning Star Ferry.

Crown immunity was originally an ancient principle in British Common Law, which signifies the unequal relationship between the ruling class and its subjects. However, throughout the years, laws like Crown Proceedings Act 1947, Human Rights Act 1998 s.4, European Convention on Human Rights, art.6(1) act as a system of checks and balances. Crown Proceedings (Armed Forces) Act 1987 is especially enacted to limit the power of the military forces. The communist government of Hong Kong deliberately kept the exemptions and privileges enjoyed by the British Army and delegated them to the PLA, and crossed out the parts where these powers are limited, enabling the CCP of more power, as CCP places itself at a superior position than the law.

In the Hua Tian Long case in 2010 (The Hua Tian Long (No 3) [2010] 3HKC 557), the plaintiff sued the defendant in the Hong Kong courts for breach of contract and damages, and the crane-barge was supposedly forbidden to leave Hong Kong. The defendant and the owner of the barge, Guangzhou Salvage Bureau was part of the PRC Ministry of Communications, and raised a defense claiming to be entitled to immunity from suit, and therefore could not be sued by virtue of the doctrine of crown immunity. The defense was accepted by The High Court of Hong Kong, none of the parties in this lawsuit queried the legitimacy of such an unfair system, and the Court of Appeal was said to be in no position to carry out any litigation. The judge held that “the immunity which was previously enjoyed by the British Crown in Hong Kong was transferred on Handover to the CPG of the PRC”, and that “crown immunity is absolute and applies not only to functional acts of state but also to commercial acts”. The court in Hong Kong has no right to decide which kind of sovereign immunity is to be practiced in Hong Kong, and has no right to judge in cases concerning sovereign immunity, where the state is the defendant. This entails that state-owned enterprises enjoy special privileges in Hong Kong, and can do harm to the fair competitive environment ad libitum. 

Atsuna: Hong Kong Is Experiencing a Cultural Revolution

Hong Kong Is Experiencing a Cultural Revolution
Translated by Chen-t'ang 鎮棠, edited by Gordon C., written by Atsuna
Original: www.passiontimes.hk/article/11-30-2015/27181 

A 15-vote distance: Teacher Jenny Leung Wing-sze lost to a DAB member in the District Council (DC) Election. Life as a secondary school teacher is already hard, especially when the education sector is so mainlandised. But to be so brave to contest in this election, it is only the love she possesses for her home that enabled her to make such a big sacrifice.

Yet, when the battle ended, in some restaurants, when some neighbours heard that she failed, their response was to exclaim, “Serves her right!” I can even imagine the joyous expressions they might have when they would sing “Congratulations and Celebrations”, filled with schadenfreude.

So you thought this must have been the rantings of some uneducated grumpy old fart? I do have some middle-aged colleagues, who might not have a high qualification, but still decent people. But once I heard them slamming, “That is right! Arrest those who mess around! Occupying the streets and they shall all go to hell!” I am utterly shocked that a decent person like her could turn into such a dragon to a stranger. Those who are willing to sleep on streets and be arrested for Hong Kong are more sinned than criminals in their eyes.

Aleksandras Štromas, a Lithuanian dissident, once said, socialism is “a moral rather than an economic or social concept” (Štromas et al., 2003. Totalitarianism and the Prospects for World Order). The Chinese Communist Party has long given up socialism and become a thorough follower of national capitalism, but is still good at carrying out “thought reforms” and forcing their beliefs onto Hongkongers.

(Apple Daily)
Usually, those who think about politics deeply are the minority – especially in a society like Hong Kong (where people seldom read seriously). The majority of the people do have a conscience, but they are too gullible to propaganda. They might be angry once about the Tian'anmen Massacre, but they would also condemn the Occupy Movement, because their moral values are often skewed, thanks to TVB. When CCP has mainstream media in its grip, they form new “moral values”. They will whitewash the corruption and lies above, and smear those who dare to challenge the authority. Freedom fighters are seen as inexcusable rabble rousers in those elderly's eyes – as the hatred sowed on mice in cats' eyes. No wonder they are so angry about the Occupy Movement.

What they did in the Cultural Revolution was also based on moral concept. They claimed that what they criticised are evils and villains. In such a distorted value system, decent and honest people simply had no room to survive, as they had to either leave the country, or die. Lian Yizheng, a columnist on HKEJ, said there are different “rod-and-carrot” systems in the political and economic environment in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Whereas some might not survive if they cannot accommodate this, some might receive carrot when they know how to live well, like how hypocrites are the champion in Mainland Chinese politics. So Hong Kong, Taiwan and China are indeed three different peoples, each with their own cultural heritage.

Xi Jinping shows his preference to Mao, and some even said he is having a small
(nowTV News; Chan Ching-sum)
“Cultural Revolution”. But Hong Kong is under another cultural revolution too! HKSARG spares no efforts to promote “China-Hong Kong integration”. At the end, they want to assimilate the “rod-and-carrot” systems of Hong Kong and China. Gradually, Hong Kong becomes not so talent-oriented; it is those who are shameless enough who are receiving carrots. Lo Chung-mau, who had a thesis credibility crisis, was challenging the “academic standard” of Johannes Chan. Thugs and scoundrels like Chan Ching-sum, Leticia Lee and Man Shek are the ones who rise to fame/notoriety. People seem not to know how bastard those officials are,
(MemeHK)
but fire at those who dare to challenge the authority. This is the “new values” of Hong Kong. But how many people know that our very own “rod-and-carrot” system, the foundation upon which they made a life for themselves, is eroding?