On reflection, I think Bruce A might be right that this is commendable honesty.
“If it’s entirely a numbers game and numeric representation, then obviously you’d be talking to the half of the people in Hong Kong who earn less than US$1,800 a month. Then you would end up with that kind of politics and policies,” the Chief Executive said.
His comments echo those of Wang Zhenmin, the Dean of Law at Beijing’s Qinghua University a regular advisor to Beijing on Hong Kong issues. Mr Wang said in August that greater democratic freedom in Hong Kong must be balanced against the city’s powerful business elite who would have to share their “slice of the pie” with voters.
After all most democratic governments are to a greater or lesser extent in thrall to minority interests of one sort or another (usually close to where there is money).
So the fact that both Beijing and the Hong Kong Chief Executive are happy to talk about this publicly is quite something.
To be clear: most international coverage seems very nuanced and has picked up e.g. the new generation of Hong Kong people who don’t have any real alignment with China and can’t see any chance of prosperity in their home town.
A street scene in Causeway Bay last night. Lots of people heading for Sogo junction. Shops: open. Streets: clean. Mood: determined but utterly unthreatening. Police: absent. Cars: sharing the road with pedestrians.
Total respect to all for keeping the lid on understandable anger after the lack of engagement from politicians and the not-quite-nuclear* riot police response less than 24 hours ago. (*nuclear=PLA)
Hong Kong protesters with their arms in the air targeted with tear gas, pepper spray, guns and batons. Riot police 100m from Caroline’s office.
Well done Occupy and students for keeping calm. Not the sensible policing we would expect.
I’m guessing the clearance proper will start when most people are in bed asleep. That way in which it is done will be the catalyst. Who knows what for. It doesn’t seem frightening right now. Maybe it should.