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Why Hong Kong Is Still Marching (nytimes.com)
346 points by JumpCrisscross 33 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 222 comments



Could someone please explain what the long-term goal of the protesters is? Best case scenario, HK and Chinese government postpone the integration until 2047. What then? When the borders come down, what will happen to all those who openly talked against Beijing government, held candlelight vigils for Tienanmen Square victims, and rallied and protested against a government who does not like people protesting and does not shy away from killing thousands or putting millions in concentration camps.

Do all protesters in HK plan to emigrate before 2047 or do they think they can convince Beijing to keep away even after that date?


They are idealists, their parents and grandparents were not subjected to Cultural revolution and rest of the brutality of PRC. They think they can keep the city they love as it is.

Realistically their only hope is collapse of PRC. Never say never and who knows they might help it happen.

I have quite a few classmates back from university (end of 90s start of 2000s) whose families saw writing on the wall, had enough $$ and got the fuck out while going was good.


> their only hope is collapse of PRC

Not necessarily. A respectful and long-term oriented Beijing would be fine. (The CPC would need to change, to prevent a dictator-for-life like Xi from re-emerging.)

There are a lot of win-win outcomes between the subjugation of Hong Kong and collapse of China.


Perhaps true in theory, but the practice of history says otherwise. Any anyway, it's not China that going to collapse, but the dictatorial regime.


Oh so China can survive a regime rotation without collapsing...sorry never happened once in China’s history


Depends on how you define a regime. If we can be a bit wishy-washy, Deng rewrote the constitution from scratch and was essentially running it like a new regime, but still paid lip service to Mao to prevent mutiny. A similar change is not unthinkable if Hu/Wen/Li's liberal faction gets in power.


this is an interesting criticism. I would have characterized the Chinese leadership of having a much more long-term outlook than the vast majority of other countries.


They are long term on many things, but not things that concern national pride. It is unclear what threat a semiautonomous HK actually presents to them, beyond just being a bunch of people near Shenzhen who can say mean things about you. It’s not like a rebellion could start there, they would be perfectly happy being left alone.


The threat of HK is that the mainlanders might start wanting some democracy for themselves.

In a way China made a mistake asking for HK back. While it was British they had a convenient boogeyman to point to, now it is part of China, Beijing has nowhere to hide, and the only option they have is to destroy it. This will be a painful process for both Beijing and HK.


There is a genuine fear of social disintegration if democracy were implemented in the mainland. Unfortunately, since Tian'anmen Square, the CPC has lacked leaders with the wisdom and guts to experiment with political reform and so now, HK's 1C2S is a threat that needs to be fire-walled off instead of an opportunity.

In terms of political culture, I don't think either side really understands the other.


He's not dictator-for-life, they simply don't have term limits.


In theory yes, but in reality he faces no opposition and so will always be "re-elected".


Don't they have elections? Maybe the people want him there, then.


Only high up party members vote in China. And the party controls the count.


I'm not 100% across Chinese politics, but from what I understand the Politburo[1] (where the top leaders sit, including Xi) are voted in by the Central Committee [1].

But the Central Committee isn't really an independent body, and the people who sit there are selected by the Politburo - effectively the Politburo members just vote themselves in.

(P.s. as mentioned I'm not 100% across the politics in China so happy to be corrected)

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politburo_Standing_Committee_o...

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_Committee_of_the_Commu...


Is there not some sort of democratic structure that allows people to have a say in their government? If you took a survey of random Chinese people would they say Xi Xinping is some dictator that they don't want there?


I think part of the reason that the number of people protesting has grown over the years is that a lot of the people who would have been protesters left around '97. A new generation has grown up with many basic freedoms and they don't want to give those up... And they don't want to leave HK either. I'm not sure if it's harder to get visas to other countries nowadays, but a lot of people are choosing to stay and fight for their country and their way of life rather than running away.


>And they don't want to leave HK either. I'm not sure if it's harder to get visas to other countries nowadays, but a lot of people are choosing to stay and fight for their country and their way of life rather than running away.

That's likely true for many people, but there percentage of people that are so dissatisfied that they want to emigrate is very large - 57% of 18-30 year olds indicated they would emigrate if given the chance in a CUHK survey earlier this year:

"Around two-fifths (38.9%) of respondents indicated they would emigrate to other places if they got the chance...younger people (e.g. aged 18-30: 57.0%) had a higher tendency to emigrate.."

"Top pushing factors for emigration among those inclined to move were “dissatisfaction with SAR government / government performance / Chief Executive / high-ranking government officials” (11.0%), “overcrowded living conditions” (10.5%), “too much political dispute / social cleavage” (10.3%), and “slow economic growth or bad economic prospect” (10.3%)."

https://www.cpr.cuhk.edu.hk/en/press_detail.php?id=2364&t=su...


The ace in the hole for Hong Kong is that Beijing wants to unify with Taiwan as well and is promoting their relationship with Hong Kong as a possible model for how that might work. They want to demonstrate to Taiwan that they could reunify and Taiwan could still retain a degree of autonomy.

Beijing agreed to stay hands-off Hong Kong until 2047, but that doesn't necessarily mean the entire judicial, legal and political system in Hong Kong will become null and void overnight. In principle of course Beijing will be able to do whatever they like, but it seems at leas plausible that they will incrementally re-form the system in HK to their liking over time rathe than in one blow. In fact things like the extradition bill, which you can bet was at least reviewed and approved by Beijing if not dictated by them, is an attempt to start that process now through indirect means.

Ideally for Beijing, such indirect means would be the only means necessary even after 20147. Why impose change if you can present it as driven by HK legislators themselves?


2047 is 28 years from today. A number of things may change.uh China during that time; the leadership of CPC very likely will have changed.

28 years ago, in 1991, China looked notably different from what it is today.


Indeed, 28 years ago China was not even a dictatorship!

It is foolish to think China in another 28 years is going to be nicer. Despot regimes get worse before they collapse. Sadly even the collapse is not a reprieve.


The thing though is that until recently, one could argue that China was going in the right direction... The liberal faction was much more tolerable to HKers... The current government with Xi Jinping is a relapse to a more despotic regimes...

It's also not true, Chiang Kai-shek's son inherited the power from his father but paved the way to Democracy so sometimes despot regimes actually do progress for the better.


Was China better 30 years ago? Didn't we just see the 30 year anniversary of tiananmen square..


500,000,000+ people taken out of extreme poverty is generally considered a slight improvement.


Fair point :)


Problem here is the definition of 'better'. We'd need to find a common ground of agreement on that before deciding if it is better now or 30 years ago. Perhaps the answer isn't even a simple yes/no.


This is indeed true. I find it quite surprising that most Chinese people in PRC believe that it will, though. I suppose one can have 5000 years of cultural history but that does not imply that lessons have been learned.


They're fighting for a democratic China. Nobody else within the Chinese political sphere is so overtly standing up to xi jinping.

I think it's good. They're giving hope to fellow supporters of Chinese democracy. There's people like that on the mainland and they don't have much else to give them hope.


One Country, Two Systems actually stipulates that Hong Kong shall enjoy a high degree of autonomy for "at least" 50 years, there is nothing that state what will actually happen afterwards.

Therefore it is conceivable for Hong Kong to remain somewhat autonomous after 2047, after which, it is possible for mainland China to further develop politically and legally so that integration would cause less of an issue.


They're "progressing" in the wrong direction at a rapid pace at the moment.


It's more like whisful thinking. The CCP is just being patient, eroding HK autonomy one law at a time so people don't realize it or become complacent.


I think the reason they are doing that is because if people do notice that all their rights are gone waking up one day in 2047, what would happen then would dwarf the protests we see now. They would rather portray HK as bickering over something minor many times then being in open revolt over a huge infringement of all their rights at the same time.


They do realize it. Why do you think there are millions in the streets?


people do realize it. but its unclear what will happen on the long term.


What alternative do you propose for them? emigrate now? By 2047 many things could change, maybe China would become more democratic, maybe it would be easier to build a floating city, maybe indeed China would agree to leave more autonomy. The long term plan for everyone is to die, but improving things in short term is still worth it.


Emigrate to where? Taiwan? Singapore? Other places with a vibrant Chinese community? By 2047 things could change for the worse. You're being overly optimistic when all signs hint that it's getting worse. They're too close to mainland with the PLA at their doorstep.


Naturally most people do things they think they can continue doing in the future. The more HKers value their way of life and defend it the more difficult it will be to tear down the walls just like that. Facts on the ground influence political outcomes.


Several of the people that I've asked in Hong Kong say that they're simply fighting to protect the city that they love. There are many paths that the future can take, and while a lot of them do not look good for the way of life of many Hong Kongers, if they don't fight now then they're giving up their city freely. And to do that is just unfathomable.


Why does everything have to have some long term goal? Everything is transient. Life is fleeting. Fight for tomorrow.


The short term goal is very simple.

* Withdraw the bill, not a temporary suspension. * Withdraw the characterisation of last Wed protest as a riot.


Then? Carrie Lam step down? Then? Chief Executive elected directly? Then? Independence referendum? Then? ...

There is no end really, and absent a working political process to absorb and debate demands, street protests can always turn toward the extreme. That's why it's dangerous to force people to go this route.

Unfortunately there will be a red line somewhere, and for China it is probably one or two steps away on that list. Remember, Tian'anmen Square also spiraled out of control from very mild beginnings.


These days CCP's action is getting less free. With Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia and friends around the town it's no longer the cheapest labor to the point of being able to ignore the world's value. There's a price to be leveraged for every move.

Not a supporter of Trump otherwise but the trade war here does help. US is throwing punches already, see Hong Kong human rights democracy act: https://time.com/5607043/hong-kong-human-rights-democracy-ac...


I think most protesters are optimistic that if they can keep on winning each political battle like this, something dramatic can happen in their favor in 2047.

Also even if nothing can be changed, one perspective is that it is better to vocally reject rather than accepting in silence.


2047 is 28 years from now. Twenty eight years ago, the Soviet Union still existed (until December). Twenty eight years ago, Chinese GDP per capita was $359.

Twenty eight years from now, the EU may not exist. There may no longer be fish in the ocean: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/salt-water-fish-extinction-seen...

All I'm saying is lot can happen in 28 years, and it's pretty silly for the protestors to give up now because of what might happen decades later.


You can also say that we are all going to die in < 100 years, let's don't eat/work/play/etc. But of course no body would stop doing things. We should always try to make the best of our lives.


The extent to which they carry a flame for Tiananmen indicates that they have an all-China political vision as well.


I believe there are two different crowds. The older one does the candle light vigils. The younger one wants HK independence and doesn't really care about the rest of China. But it would be great if the second group learned a bit of history, including of protest movements in the mainland, and showed that all-China vision you speak of. It could only help themselves and help everyone.


Even if it doesn't change anything, they at least stood up and fought.


They don't. That's why youngsters are the driving force for changes, they destroy. It is not a bad thing. The real driving force to make change is actually power. When these protests are aligned with some power, things go change. I am certain things won't happen in countries such as US or China. For smaller and weaker countries, maybe.


30 years is a decently long time relative to China's current political system, it could change quite a bit by then.


30 years ago was tiananmen square...

What forces is at work for the better here?


Putting of a bad policy for a little less than 30 years doesn't seem trivial.


Please read my comment below for the article.

For your question you must have to see not through the lens of a unified Hong Kong. Hong Kong is really international.

Firstly, there are four - June 9 1m+ then jun 9 evening; June 12 with some conflict but mostly the young one trying to stop the bill without this the bill would not have even suspended; jun 16 the 2m+. their composition are very different. The target is also different.

My comment and the article hopefully give you some hint on the jun 9 and jun 12 1 and 2m+. They are across spectrum of whole Hong Kong.

May I roughly said 1/2 of hker have foreign passport or at least have relatives overseas. Many of the protestors are not want to go but do have a place to go. Or try hard to. You may note those hongkonges’ link as 29 cities around the world join the protest. That segment join not to emigrate as they did it already. The law affected them staying in Hong Kong. But more importantly they would affect the Hong Kong status as it affect the foreigner as well.

You have to aware many of the objection to the law are coming from official diplomatic with official letters from Eu, Britain and many different USA camp. The 85,000 American lived here is a force. There are foreigners in the protest. If they go, Hongkong is done.

(There are another group. About 1m of hker are not really hker. They just come in the last 20 years for various reasons. The huawei woman in Canada is holding 3 hk passport. I suspect they might not have join the protest as they conf to hk to hide etc. Now they trigger others as if these group go the property markets may die. Hk is the most expensive place in the world to own a car park size flat. Other then foreigner these affect is key.)

This 2m+ protest is very unusual as many are pro-china and pro-establishment camp. For this they will no doubt stay. But it is driving away foreigner and hidden chinese rich that would affect them.

Guess you are after the two major protest but the conflict one. We are not sure about the brick throwing etc. But quite sure many of the protestor as reported by those hymns signing Christian are young kids. They call hk home. They would fight by putting their body between the gun and the legislature chamber to prevent the bill to pass. They are less calculated than we adults. They saw this as a beginning of end of Hong Kong as the chinese law come to rule. At all cost they have to stop it.

One protestor said clearly “shoot me dead is better than this” and then she join the effort encircling the chamber. Many young one was hurt as there is no weapon. One of my friend trying to help found out first time it hurt a lot when tear gas residue touch your skin. And she is just helping. But whilst crying and painful our kids just wash their eyes and skins. And go back. One said “I do not want to give up”. All still lost as the chamber finally was cleared. In fact they will charge 7-10 year in jail if caught. (And if they had gone to Hosiptal and without the doctor and nurse reporting them somehow the police know. Two get arrested this way.)

But the story leaked out to us all. Unlike umbrella movement there is no leader. None. Just kids organised themselves using telegram where to go. It was a shock to oldies like us. Self organised ... no match to riot police. But just kids fighting for their home.

The community know and shock. That is why one of the slogan is to not to define this as riot and release the student involved. In the protest sometimes I can see parents walking not very normal protestor like. Then I saw a boy or a girl around. You can sense what is going on. I suspect they come is to ensure the kid not to do this alone. May be they drag them out if something happen.

Before I went to protest one of my neigbour looking at me wearing black t shirt. They said they would not go themselves. But they told a bit their family and relatives story. It is like everyone know someone’s kid are involved. As she said in the past she blamed the activist. But all in jail now. These kids just went themselves. They are nice kids not troublemaker they said. Help them is their message if they are pro government.

These kids are not going to go anywhere. Better die than run, unlike their parents like us. Hong Kong is their home. 2047. I do not see they see there is a deadline. It is their motherland. Hong Kong is not China. Hong Kong is Hong Kong.

Hence even shocking to us usual protestor, the whole community move to protect their kids. I never saw so many people in my life m. I have even joined the jun 9 million people protest and June 16 is a totally different scale.

Not sure I answer your question as I do not know what are their strategy, tactics or plan. but I hope I give you an impression as one protestor following the case. It is a shock. If we live long enough you will see either a tragedy or a birth of a nation. God bless.


>One of my friend trying to help found out first time it hurt a lot when tear gas residue touch your skin. And she is just helping. But whilst crying and painful our kids just wash their eyes and skins. And go back.

My favorite line that I heard from one protester was "tear gas isn't so bad, it's sort of just like chopping onions. I eat spicy food worse than it all the time". You can't help but smile at that kind of attitude.


Agreed, which I was surprised the waiting game wasn't played like during the Umbrella Revolution.

I'm glad they were successful in this piece, but man... what's the long game and how do you get there?

Is there a path to keeping Hong Kong truly separate? A Crimea? An independent state?

Personally, I don't think so, but keep fighting guys, it's basically all they've got.


I’m from china mainland, and I stand for these protesters. At least, I don’t want them lose the right of fighting for their rights. And btw, even such huge protest happening, there is no report, no discussion in China, even message left on SNS also get censored or vanished. Terrifying.

Edit: apologize for uncertain words, it needs add a time limitation. The first protest was happening at 9th June and all Chinese media chose keep silent. And now it cannot be covered. But attention, it still be defined as a riot.


How common would you say it is for someone living in China to be able to have access to outside information / sites like you?

Does everyone mostly understand that the government censors things to such an extreme but because of a fear of being targeted choose to not say anything, or would you say that most people are actually genuinely ignorant?


In China mainland, there is a censor tech named Great Firewall.(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Firewall?wprov=sfti1) It just cut off the connection between China and the World Internet by blocking famous website like Twitter, Facebook etc. Only the people have eagerness of finding truth will use anti-blocking tech like VPN to find information by themselves. Of course, it’s inconvenience and sometimes not working because of outer server banned. Not sure how many people could get information by themselves. But it’s pessimistic for people living in China how willing to find the information.

Recently, because the propagation by gov, the citizens even think the GFW is protecting them from harmful information and the outside force want breaking up China rather than censorship itself. Especially, this time the protest is propagated as a riot planned by western country. Being lack of information, most citizens support gov’s standpoint.

So maybe not ignorant, just like not conscious, as a result of being accustomed.


> Being lack of information, most citizens support gov’s standpoint.

NO, because of the censorship, we do not know how many people actually support gov’s standpoint. Your statement is pure speculation and does not have any factual basis.

The Chinese government will not allow any professional organization to conduct and publish a survey like: "Do you support the censorship?", or "Do you support protest in HK?", or "Do you support shooting students in the Tianman Square", or "Do you support Xi to be the Chairman forever?"

Even the Chinese government itself does not know how many people support it and they fear the number is in fact not small, that is exactly why they need censorship in the first place.

One of the most commonly used words in their propaganda is "一小撮" [1, 2]. They always claim the people against them is only a few bad people. I never bought this even when I was in middle school. The reason is so obvious: if it is truly only a few people against you, why don't you just allow people to vote? Why don't you just allow people to speak up? The only reason you are so afraid is that you know maybe it is not just a few, and you know there is a good reason for people to stand against you.

1. https://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E4%B8%80%E5%B0%8F%E6%92%AE

2. https://www.linguee.com/chinese-english/translation/%E4%B8%8...


I suspect you're being downvoted for the big shouty capital NO, and the fact you're trying to refute someone's opinion, when they were explicitly asked what their opinion was. This came across as being negative and confrontational. Reading your post more carefully I can see your heart is in the right place and are mainly just trying to provide context and comment but the initial confrontational tone drowns that out.

This is a very open and courteous community, where a bit of generosity in interpreting people's statements, and courtesy even to people we disagree with, is highly valued and it seems to me you have some very valuable views and experience to share.


OK. I didn't know the "NO" is that a big deal.


Thanks for your voice, and pointing out the defect in my thought. I came up with my view by my observation on Chinese SNS platform, and no factual basis like a professional survey or any data could support my view. It let me feel bad that in the political environment in China which is not allowed to talk about politics freely, it's hard to find factual evidence to support my stand.


This reminds me of a discussion that I've seen somewhere, with a Russian journalist who ran to the US after becoming a target for participating in the 2011–2013 Russian protests.

- What's the public opinion of Russian people on Putin?

- There's no such thing as public opinion in Russia.

- What do you mean, I can go out, sample 1000 people and ask them a question. That's what I mean by public opinion.

- You can do that, but the result is useless. There are studies on the topic - people will just say whatever was on last week's [state controlled] news.


> You can do that, but the result is useless. There are studies on the topic - people will just say whatever was on last week's [state controlled] news.

I doubt the correlation is perfect, which makes such polls non-useless. For example, comparing questions on which the correlation is more or less strong would allow identifying the degree of trust in the state media depending on the topic they're reporting on.


Yeah but the point is that >95% of signal is drowned in propaganda. And the other point is just how much is that inconceivable to someone with access to free press, as exemplified by your response.


There are some Chinese students who are studying in US universities support the CN government on this event. Even though they have access to the information, they still choose not to believe it.


It doesn't surprise me. The Chinese government isn't dumb enough to say "we want to abolish the rule of law in HK", instead they say "we want to stop rapists and murderers from escaping justice".

Honestly in most places in the world, that kind of appeal to emotion is an effective way to dismantle the rule of law. It is only because the people of Hong Kong are both highly educated and distrustful of Beijing that it doesn't work on them.


And of course they’re doing in a way that’s also reasonable. The HK law isn’t about political crimes... it just happens to be an extremely slippery slope and of course China wants that incremental movement towards total control.


I never really understood how Chinese people could live under such a regime until a read a long-form book about life in China by a New Yorker journalist who lived and reported from the for many years:

https://www.amazon.com/Age-Ambition-Chasing-Fortune-Truth-eb...

It's really hard to grasp how effective information control, combined with 20-30% of the population being "party members", and other means of control can completely convince (or more likely blind) the population from external realities.

It's hard because you can see how smart and capable Chinese-Americans (or Canadians, or whatever) are at anything they set their mind to, where it almost seems like something is missing in their culture vs the West.

The general lesser educated and poor swath is easier to understand how they can be lied to and believe. The key is the smarter-than-average Chinese who do end up getting access to outside information are thoroughly convinced by the state early on that 'western propaganda is merely constantly trying to denigrate China's great, big, neverending achievements. But not only that, they amplify all of the negative things the western countries do poorly like class or race relations or other things citizens are constantly complaining about in the media, and try to pretend they are covering up those while hypocritically trying to judge Asian countries.

It's really quite a genius type of system when you look at how successful it is, which legitimate the US contributed to with all of the pysop/intelligence community stuff that they mastered. But of course it's 100x easier in a system where media and education are entirely controlled, not just partially like in the US (the Chinese aren't just dumb drones is what I'm saying but I'm not convinced the state can maintain this delusion forever).


As a native Chinese living overseas (well US, the location might matter), I could add that it’s not necessary true oversea Chinese students will wind up pro-democracy, because 1) most were having a utopian view of US and most will be disappointed/delusioned after a few years. 2) most if not all never lived in a multi race society before, so the smallest discrimination can be 10x magnified 3)Anti-China news are often mis-interpreted as Anti-Chinese, which myself still struggling to get out sometimes (e.g. “we shouldn’t do business with mainland China” look very offensive to me)


Being offended by #3 isn't really unique. The whole anti-Israel vs. anti-Semitic thing is a good example of this difficulty. Same with people being critical of long-standing American institutions -- Americans get offended. The only time people can really make it clear in their mind whom they are criticizing is when they are criticizing a particular leader, e.g. Trump, Xi, Kim Jong Un, etc. Everything else just riles people up for no reason.


simple answer: we don't have alternatives. comparing with being meddling by USA or any foreign power, I'd rather pick CCP.

No matter how well intentioned you guys are/were, I'll say it in your face: I don't trust you. here is the problem: if you were pissed off by my remark, then how could you overcome the trust issue? if you were not, how stupid I'm going to be to trust you?

honestly, I think we deserve whatever we have right now, and so do you. how about we just do business and leave the urge to 'help' other people in the world in sci-fi books?


Not from the west. You don't have to trust people, but you should be free to make up your own mind. Read what they say and decide.

In South Africa we used to have strict control over our news media. Having opened up, I'd rather read and watch what I want, make my mind up, and not get into trouble for voicing my opinion.

A free media fights corruption. If you have no corruption then you're a very special country.


Be free to make your own mind. The Chinese are making their own mind, right? So what the fuss?

The most funny part when the US or other western countries point fingers at Chinese having insufficient information of misinformation to decide for themselves, is that a significant portion of their population still believes in God, and in US specifically, people believe in Creationism.

I don't know, information is just information and can be manipulated and interpreted in both ways. Is abortion a choice of the mother, or a violation of rights of the child? Are guns tools to fight oppression or ways to kill innocent people? They're both, but each side sees the other side as heretic and intolerable.

Now, don't the Chinese people know there's corrutption in the country? Don't they know there's censorship? Don't they even joke about it? US has problems and people talk about it. China has problems and people talk about. In public. On the Internet. China is not how you think it is, no need to paint it as a monster.


> China has problems and people talk about. In public. On the Internet.

I'm sorry - but isn't that in direct contradiction to the censorship? Doesn't the censorship prevent you from talking about things that Chinese leadership thinks would reflect badly on them or the country?


> a significant portion of their population still believes in God, and in US specifically, people believe in Creationism.

They believe Creationism because the US/west offers the freedom of choice. There is no government regulation forcing you to believe in one way or the other - you choose based on your own beliefs and experience.


I don't think it's a monster at all. It's a great country. I do think the leadership isn't giving the full due set of human rights to the citizenry.

The people are more important then the current leadership.


It's funny to make comparison between CCP and "foreign power" as CCP was originally funded by the Soviets, which is, of course, a "foreign power". And the sad truth is that you as an individual really can't make opinions for "we" which I'd take as "Chinese people" here. The problem is that the opposite opinions to yours are getting oppressed in a unprecedented way. Lastly, "do business" doesn't mean "cheat and take advantage", as civilized people won't call IP theft as part of "business". I didn't expect to see such Wumao speech here (no matter you're paid or not) and really don't want to waste more time on your typical Wumao debates and tricks, so plz don't reply thx.


yes, CCP was funded by Soviets and it's not a secret. ideas always come from somewhere. according to your logic, USA would be impossible b/c all the funding fathers were brits, at the time. or, you were suggesting CCP is still under Russian influence? well, it's possible. besides, I don't support every move of CCP.

I'm pride not to use 'we' here precisely b/c I know I can't represent all Chinese. whom am I to claim to have that authority? I know whom I am, and I know I have blind spot in my view, and I happily to admit the fact. and I'll be even happier to know if there is any wrong with my logic. the question is, are you?

or, maybe you want to shield the light on the tactic about 'Red herring'?


"Just leave us alone while we're building concentration camps. Nothing to see here, move along."


Helping other people in the world is all we're here to do.


Those students see the government mostly aligned with their interests and have benefits from a lifetime of indoctrination via a higher end public school system. Censorship is more for the less elite classes that don’t have those benefits.

Even then, if China decided not to censor anything tomorrow and just went with western-style spin, 80% of the population would basically still agree with the government. That they don’t bother is basically a hold over of old-fashioned thinking, and once the last cultural revolution era leader (Xi Jinping) retires, China’s government should modernize very quickly. That this leader has decided not to retire on schedule is very disturbing.


Like anything, the lack of competition and criticism makes the Chinese political culture susceptible to attacks and its propaganda weak and useless.

Censorship has worked a little too well, and it's become a nasty habit to break out of. That's why the biggest traitor in modern times is Fang Binxing, the father of the GFW, though he probably believed himself to be a patriot.


Lack of competition and criticism is the foundation of Western democracy too. Polemics is not a space where actual meaning has ever sprung from; yet try to find anywhere here or in media or in real life discussions that are not that shape. Binaries shape all we are. I do not feel I have enough knowledge to judge life anywhere but where I live. I live in the West; I experience extreme censorship of my ideas due to my gender, class and career choices.


Where do you live in the west? I'm in the us, I just don't see extreme censorship except for racist pandering comments. Don't like the president, or cell phones, or capitalism, all good. Don't like poor people, no one will try to stop you. Only if you make racist, sexist, or gay bashing comments will people try to stop you from speaking. I haven't lived in China but I see the value in people being free to ask questions, read what they want, and not be worried about being kidnapped in the night and taken to prison - those seem pretty safe as universal rights to me.


> Only if you make racist, sexist, or gay bashing comments will people try to stop you from speaking.

Beware of conflating "the ideas you express suck and we want nothing to do with you" (on either a social or an economic basis) with "you can't speak". There's a very large difference and the people who are speaking in the way you describe are absolutely begging (shout outs to Laura Loomer) to be thought of as "persecuted by the normies".


I live in Canada. I have a graduate degree in Equity stuides and have spent my life writing and working to fight racism, sexism and homophobia. It's death by a thousand cuts in the West. I am currently in St. Petersburg Russia on an art project and it is so much more open and nuturing to new ideas than Toronto ever was. On the contrary, not liking capitalism and supporting poor people comes with a very high social cost.


Well, unless you happen to be pussy riot, then Putin’s a Russia might not feel so nurturing.


Living somewhere, and contextualizing geopoltics and the difference between a citystate like St. Petersburg and a nation state (Russia), is highly recommended before concluding from afar. Though, it is certainly the mindset of our culture to do so.


Well, sure. One of the most interesting questions is whether there really is a universal human desire for liberty and democracy or whether that’s just an arbitrary cultural norm of the West. Different cultures can have different preferences and values; part of the whole reason for controlling the flow of information is to control the flow of those values.


Your comment suggests that there is a correct opinion and an incorrect opinion. This is as totalitarian as the "other side".

This issue of extradition is far from being black and white.


It's usually viewed as a protective measure more than a mechanism of oppression. And it is protective. If you believe that widespread dissidence could lead to the collapse of your government then preventing that is a necessary evil to ensure your own well being.

So, yeah, most mainlanders are aware of the censorship but it's not always viewed as inherently bad. And not just out of fear of being targeted or something. It's also easier to justify things that way when you're not even sure what exactly is being censored or why, you just assume it's probably for the better.

We allow similar censorship in the US (of things like extremist propaganda or hate speech) with a similar justification. But free speech in the US is rarely an actual threat to the authority of the government itself.


>We allow similar censorship in the US (of things like extremist propaganda or hate speech) with a similar justification.

The difference is that this is private companies doing it of their own volition and not by government demand. The US government can't do anything about you hosting a website and posting extremist propaganda/hate speech on it. (the exception being speech which is _likely_ to cause _imminent lawless action... see: Brandenberg v. Ohio)


You're right, I didn't mean to compare them in that way. There is a difference between government-mandated vs corporations voluntarily censoring.

My point was just to highlight that even here in the US we accept some level of censorship. Most of us are okay with Islamic extremist propaganda or videos of violence being removed from websites if it's done to prevent future violence. And that should explain why there are so many people in mainland China who accept censorship without seeing it as excessively oppressive. Especially when they aren't fully aware of what all is being censored or why.


> The difference is that this is private companies doing it of their own volition and not by government demand.

Is this really a meaningful difference if the end result is the same?


The result isn't the same though. With hate speech there has been an open debate in society and the media about what is acceptable and what isn't, and that consensus is not complete and is regularly challenged. Even the media that is censored, such as videos of hostage executions, is often discussed widely and the content described so people still know about it andcan often track it down if they really want to, it's just not propagated in it's raw offensive form. The state censorship in China is of a completely different order.

It saddens me that so many people draw this sort of false equivalence. All it does is provide comfort and support for the sort of pervasive state imposed news blackouts and retribution against individual commentators practiced in places like China.


Yes, because the alternative is the government forcing a 3rd party to provide a platform for speech they disagree with. And since that platform isn't free, you're also forcing them to spend their own resources to support it.

Those 3rd parties have rights too. They shouldn't be required to support and provide resources for speech they disagree with.


> Yes, because the alternative is the government forcing a 3rd party to provide a platform for speech they disagree with. And since that platform isn't free, you're also forcing them to spend their own resources to support it.

> Those 3rd parties have rights too. They shouldn't be required to support and provide resources for speech they disagree with.

I think people keep conflating the notion of being _able_ to say what you please and having a platform to do so. I sympathize with these people because I have witnessed the erosion of the public square as a place to promote your own ideas (with people glued to their phones, with headphones on, etc).

However, I agree that we can't force service providers to host content they disagree with _for free_ but there's a reason we require water companies to provide water to synagogues and mosques alike.

I think as we advance technologically, access to information (and the platforms through which they are spread) will be regarded as a necessity to function as a member of society and will be regulated as such.


> the end result is the same

Not even close. In China, you cannot even talk about politically-sensitive topics like the Tiananmen Square massacre. I don’t think you appreciate the massive chilling effect of its policies, and the strength of the Party’s grip on the social consciousness. It’s a different ball game.


> We allow similar censorship in the US...

Please don't try to justify the censorship in China.

Or even paint it as remotely reasonable, or like something Western countries would do.


It's protective of the regime, not of the people.


Protects against facts. It's not even about "dissidence" which is subjective, it's about the objective facts like the body count for example.


> If you believe that widespread dissidence could lead to the collapse of your government then preventing that is a necessary evil to ensure your own well being.

Stalin/Pol Pot/Hitler and all of the 20th century's historical tyrants would agree wholeheartedly with this statement.


I've been to mainland China recently, both rural and the fast changing cities like Shenzhen.

Chairman Mao is universally revered. No one ever questions his track record on economic growth was, even though the evidence is everywhere to see.

Similarly, censorship is rarely questioned.


In my experience I found that people from rural areas and far flung provinces were far more critical of the government than people from metropolitan areas such Beijing , Shanghai etc. Even liberal, by Western standards. Might just be a sampling error but my friends from Guangxi and Yunnan are far more sympathetic to democracy, marriage equality, gay rights etc. compared to friends from Shanghai and Beijing


Because they've not yet caught up in economic status. Once they catch up, they may become as conservative.

And cities in Guangxi and Yunan are not rural. They're just not first or second tier cities, but cities all the same. When people get to live an OK life, they will become more conservative and won't like the current situation to change too much.

Beijing and Shanghai were definitely the most outspoken cities toward Western values, as they were among the first to be exposed, and the young people gather there for higher education. The change of wind means a lot.


Chairman Mao is not revered by educated mainlanders.. It's not hard to find people criticizing him and it's not even that much of a controversial opinion that people would be careful about expressing it.


then you failed with your trip. Mao is highly controversial if not hated among all my family and friends. Censorship is laughed at on every level. where did you go?


Is your family inside or outside of china?


inside.


I think views on Mao vary a lot. Some members of my Chinese family suffered terribly under Mao, others did very well. My father in law's family owned some land, so they were crushed by the Communists as class enemies. My mother in law grew up in a city and went to university. Students back then could travel for free, so she went all over China with her friends as a young woman. She's no fan of Mao, but some Chinese do still revere him.

I saw a news report last year about some Chinese students that got arrested. They had been taught Marxism, solidarity with workers, class struggle, etc at University, then tried to put that into practice. They protested against unsafe working practices for cleaners and cooks, campaigned for workers rights and ended up getting arrested and sent to jail for challenging the very system that educated them to do this in the first place. Apparently it wasn't just an isolated incident and things like that happen from time to time.


I saw a news report last year about some Chinese students that got arrested. They had been taught Marxism, solidarity with workers, class struggle, etc at University, then tried to put that into practice. They protested against unsafe working practices for cleaners and cooks, campaigned for workers rights and ended up getting arrested and sent to jail for challenging the very system that educated them to do this in the first place. Apparently it wasn't just an isolated incident and things like that happen from time to time.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/if-i-disap...


In my bubble where people who has attended top schools and chose to stay in China. Almost all of them are aware of what is being censored. But people are too busy with earning their next million to care about those censored political topics.


> How common would you say it is for someone living in China to be able to have access to outside information / sites like you?

Let me answer this question as well, because, well, I'm entitled.

It's very very rare to see Chinese people use VPN other than for maybe to play games, most people here is just living, don't even curious about the outside world. Even worse, among those who did got out, some saw those China's wrong doings and then they choose to simply denial.

And is the very reason of why it is important to spread information: To establish some basic understanding. It's not about who is wining, not about trade war, it's not about tech superiority or smear tactics, it's about basic right and wrong.

Recently, the government issued a series of laws and regulations to further limit Chinese people's ability to access information outside of China by making it straight out illegal. And some individuals already been punished for just using a proxy.

Also, since June 1, the GFW has been upgraded to block any high risk unknown traffic, which is intended to stop Shadowsocks and other traffic encryption tools that can be used to by pass GFW's screening. It's very effective, many people lost connection with their proxy because of this.

HongKong is Not a sovereign country, if people in HongKong eventually failed, then they will face the same thing in the future. Which is the reason why they must try not fail. (If they do, then welcome to West Korea, comrade. May our dear supreme leader bless you!)

And I must say, HongKongers is really bad at resonating with others, especially with mainlanders. They must know that many people in mainland is actually quite supportive of some of their protects, we both want real democracy in our country and we are NOT enemies (Well, at least on this subject, we still love tax-free milk and iPhone so).

> Does everyone mostly understand that the government censors things to such an extreme but because of a fear of being targeted choose to not say anything, or would you say that most people are actually genuinely ignorant?

Young people who don't interested to see outside world are also not interested in figuring out what's really going on[0]. Old people who actually felt the pain knows more about the pain.

I also want to add, even in China, under such heavy censorship, people still blaming the government in some ways. So I don't think it's just "genuinely ignorant", but more of a "so what you can do about it?".

[0] An unrelated but "interesting" pic for you: https://twitter.com/1240883174Hu/status/1050010276584550400


> HongKong is Not a sovereign country, if people in HongKong eventually failed, then they will face the same thing in the future. Which is the reason why they must try not fail. (If they do, then welcome to West Korea, comrade. May our dear supreme leader bless you!)

Hong Kong people are trying to do their best--after all, with no army of its own, 2 million people went to the street to voice out, peacefully--but support from mainland China, and from the rest of the world (not necessarily US) would definitely help. And we do thank the attention and support we have been receiving in previous weeks, which led to the suspension of the extradition law.

We know the battle is not over yet, not before the resolution regarding 2047 (50 years from the handover in 1997) is clear, not before the fate of Hong Kong's autonomy is sealed.

> And I must say, HongKongers is really bad at resonating with others, especially with mainlanders. They must know that many people in mainland is actually quite supportive of some of their protects, we both want real democracy in our country and we are NOT enemies (Well, at least on this subject, we still love tax-free milk and iPhone so).

Thank you for your support.

I, for one, do not treat mainland people as enemies, and I think many Hong Kong people share my view. If you can point out concretely how Hong Kong people have been misunderstanding mainland people, please let us know. We want to speak in a way that more people can understand.


> If you can point out concretely how Hong Kong people have been misunderstanding mainland people, please let us know. We want to speak in a way that more people can understand.

I think there is a disinformation campaign against Hong Kong people here at mainland (Actually, this should be "in fact", not "I think").

During the Umbrella Movement, I asked around for people's opinion, many believes HongKongers was seeking for separation rather than democracy. One thing that makes such disinformation campaign easy, I think is because the slogan is not hitting the real goal. It could be more clear if something like「我要真民主 (I want real democracy)」is run a long side with the slogan「我要真普選」. The key is to leave no gap for those disinformation campaigners to operate.

Also, 蝗蟲論 (https://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E8%9D%97%E8%9F%B2%E8%AB%96) is very harmful. Many of my family member, even young ones believes "HongKong people thinks we are locusts". I personally view this objectively (In short, "Then why you go there and brought all of their milks?"), but many people don't.

Communication is important, you know. The two side must understand each other better so the common goal might be reached. Don't be fall to the trap and got Divide and Conquered.


Thanks for taking the time to write a detailed reply.

> I think there is a disinformation campaign against Hong Kong people here at mainland (Actually, this should be "in fact", not "I think").

I have read some news articles along those lines, so I agree that's likely. And to be honest, this is expected.

> During the Umbrella Movement, I asked around for people's opinion, many believes HongKongers was seeking for separation rather than democracy. One thing that makes such disinformation campaign easy, I think is because the slogan is not hitting the real goal. It could be more clear if something like「我要真民主 (I want real democracy)」is run a long side with the slogan「我要真普選」. The key is to leave no gap for those disinformation campaigners to operate.

That's an interesting suggestion, which I have not thought of. I do think these details, especially the key slogans, need more work because they are important.

I think the deeper cause of these gaps and lack of clarity is that, their target audience was Hong Kong people, so the protestors missed how it would have been perceived by mainland people, and this is a real missed opportunity.

> Also, 蝗蟲論 (https://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E8%9D%97%E8%9F%B2%E8%AB%96) is very harmful. Many of my family member, even young ones believes "HongKong people thinks we are locusts". I personally view this objectively (In short, "Then why you go there and brought all of their milks?"), but many people don't.

Thank you very much for your honest opinion. Points taken. And yes, I have heard of those sentiments towards parallel importers who are mainly from Mainland. At the same time, Hong Kong people have been blaming the Hong Kong government for its incompetence in balancing the needs for local residents and handling the mass demand from parallel importers. It would be better if the whole situation is kept civil.

> Communication is important, you know. The two side must understand each other better so the common goal might be reached. Don't be fall to the trap and got Divide and Conquered.

I completely agree, thanks for the words.


Indeed, my read as an expat living in HK is that HKers treat mainland China Government as an enemy, not so much the people. It's even said clearly when you go to the protests, people complain about the Beijing government...


A friend of mine who is from the mainland but spent most of their life in the United States went to HK a few years ago. They told me that traveling on a PRC passport really set off the immigration folks, and that even day to day folks were fairly rude -- to the extent that they attempted to mimic a Taiwanese accent.

I think it's unfortunate, but understandable, that there's a certain amount of contempt for mainlanders beyond "love the people, hate the government" as the problems go beyond the government (e.g. affluent mainlanders stocking up on 'safe' supplies from HK).


It seems the information flows to certain populations. I work for an US based company with an office in mainland China. Pretty much everyone in the office knows about the stuff happening in Hong Kong.


Is the internet at your office filtered? I've heard of offices for foreign companies being unfiltered, but I haven't seen it firsthand.


I was in mainland China recently. Many tech and manufacturing companies realise they need Facebook and Google to communicate with their customers. So their employees routinely use VPN, even though it's technically illegal.


What’s probably more important is where is the information being published and in what language. If something important is happening, but it’s not in the NYTimes or HN AND in English, I’m likely to miss it.


Does the satellite office proxy web traffic via the HQ?


Not proxied via HQ but there is a VPN of course for things like github, Gmail etc. but point is people are at least to some level consuming the info that is available and not sticking to only mainland based sources. I would imagine certain portions of the population have greater access than most.


Are you sure there are no discussions about this in mainland? I don't go to a lot of forums but at least I have seen lots of discussions on NGA and tieba. I am sure that there are even more discussions happened in Hupu, douban, KDS, and the countless QQ group chats. Even the threads got removed after a while, it still counts because people knows about the event and exchanged ideas.

False statements like this appeals to the Westerners but it worsens the misunderstanding between us, which is counterproductive if you want a more open and free China.

Proof: https://imgur.com/a/FbofCOK


I did wonder what the coverage on the mainland was like. No coverage seemed like the most likely outcome.


[flagged]


> I don't know what is your motivation to use a throwaway account to publicly lie on this

Personal attacks will get you banned here. Commenters on HN must remain kind to one another (see https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html), regardless of how wrong they think they are. They also must assume good faith.


What about take time back to 9th, June. The time the first protest happening, almost every famous media reported this but except Chinese. Is it wired?

And take a look at the links you chose, I don’t think it maybe a fair stand view because of already being defined as a riot.


Fair stand view would be too much a luxury for those media, but the tone isn’t that aggressive as CCP used to be (like calling them “terrorist” or “separatism”)


Don't bother, the echo chamber here is pretty bad

catpack 33 days ago [flagged]

Give us a break. You link us to communist propaganda and expect us to take you seriously? The paper tiger Chinese government is insecure enough to take down songs from Les Miserables (https://www.economist.com/prospero/2019/06/14/do-you-hear-th...). There is no fair coverage without a free press, and my view is that we need to reinforce our allies in the Hong Kong and Taiwanese and wait out or even hasten the PRC's collapse. The Chinese people deserve liberation.


On that note, the Hong Kong Free Press--a nonprofit, English-language, digital newspaper in HK--is doing its annual fundraising drive right now. If you want to support a free press in the region, this is a good place to start. Their coverage of the protests has been quite good, and they definitely hit above their weight class with the amount of resources that they have.

https://www.hongkongfp.com


Second this support for Hong Kong Free Press, where I have been putting money where my mouth is.

You can judge for yourself from their reportings, especially related to the current protest.


Propaganda? You mean like CNN and Foxnews?

Good luck finding true independent and fair media.


Just because they're biased or "unfair" doesn't mean they aren't independent. And there's a big difference because you can find consensus or inconsistencies between a collection of independent sources.

The same rule applies to learning anything from other people. The other person is probably biased in some ways so you can't 100% rely on them for 100% of your perspective. But you can talk to lots of people and gain a more rounded world view.

It's only a problem if you limit yourself to getting all of your information from one source.


Lol there are no fair coverage period, you just choose to believe things that fit your political view


Shuhhhhhhhh you break the social norm


Please don't post unsubstantive comments to HN, regardless of how frustrated you are by other comments here.

https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html


It should be a norm to take articles from authoritarian state-owned outlets with many grains of salt. The common trope is to give the basic outline of the facts while ignoring the real issues: namely the fact that communist China is undemocratic, violates basic human rights and that it is a tarnish to anyone's reputation and character to turn a blind eye to this.


Also don’t assume Chinese people are like brainless idiots, people READ the news and will wonder what ACTUALLY happened. Ironically, though silently, most educated Chinese people won’t trust official newspaper that much. so thanks no worries

catpack 33 days ago [flagged]

What can I say, these people are brainwashed from birth to think that what they have is good. Once we put enough economic pressure on them the paper tiger will fold.


We've banned this account for repeatedly violating the site guidelines.

If you don't want to be banned, you're welcome to email hn@ycombinator.com and give us reason to believe that you'll follow the rules in the future.

https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html


Hey can you read Chinese? How did you know that those articles actually didn’t mention there’s a protest going on?

catpack 33 days ago [flagged]

I don't need to read the article to know it's propaganda


Considering, that HK leader did not immediately withdrew the bill after the first protest, it is only natural to assume, that that person does not represent the will of the people. So it makes sense to impeach.


> it is only natural to assume, that that person does not represent the will of the people

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive is “elected from a restricted pool of candidates supportive of the Central Government by a 1200-member Election Committee“ [1]. The Election Committee is pro-Beijing and not a democratic body.

Hong Kong’s CE is better thought of as the CPC’s emissary to Hong Kong than as a true executive.

[1] https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chief_Executive_of_Hong_Kong


Whether and when the current Chief Executive, Carrie Lam, will be removed, is decided by CCP.

Let me explain.

Excluding the current (4th) Chief Executive Carrie Lam, there have been three other Chief Executives [1], and the upshot is that two of them experienced large protests--in 2003 for 1st CE Tung Chee-hwa, in 2014 for 3rd CE Leung Chun-ying--and both could not complete their second terms due to protests.

It is common knowledge in Hong Kong that they were pressured by higher-ups for not completing their second terms as Chief Executives, in exchange for seats as vice-chairmen of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference in China: both gave ridiculous reasons to not complete their second terms to serve Hong Kong, but then went on to become vice-chairmen serving China. They were not immediately removed after the protests only to save grace for them and for CCP.

The 1st CE Tung Chee-hwa resigned in 2005, less than 2 years after the protest in 2003 and 2 years into his second term, for a ridiculous medical reason [2]; the 3rd CE Leung Chun-ying was about to run for his second term in 2017, 3 years after the Umbrella protest, only to announce in a sudden that he did not intend to run to take care of his family [3].

Now in 2019 the 4th CE Carrie Lam faces the anti-extradition protest. And we wonder what the outcome will be.

[1]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chief_Executive_of_Hong_Kong

[2]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tung_Chee-hwa

[3]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leung_Chun-ying

(Arguably, the 2nd CE Donald Tsang, the only CE not facing large protests but who is serving prison time, also has his fate decided by the CCP, with the speculation that he refused some orders from China, but I digress.)


>who is serving prison time

Donald Tsang was released earlier this year [0]

[0]:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Tsang


> it is only natural to assume, that that person does not represent the will of the people. So it makes sense to impeach.

Is that what impeachment means? To remove someone because they've lost popular support? I thought impeachment was rather about charging a public official with some kind of crime or wrongdoing. Being unpopular isn't a crime.


> I thought impeachment was rather about charging a public official with some kind of crime or wrongdoing

Impeachment “is the process by which a legislative body levels charges against a government official” [1]. Standards vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. But since the decision is made by a political body, not judges, it is ultimately a political decision.

[1] https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment


> Impeachment “is the process by which a legislative body levels charges against a government official”

The article you've linked to says that in Hong Kong it requires 'serious breach of law or dereliction of duty'. I can't see how becoming unpopular would meet either of those conditions?

> since the decision is made by a political body, not judges

The article you've linked to says that in Hong Kong impeachment charges are investigated by judges.


> it's investigated by the judiciary

A committee chaired by a judge investigates [1]. It then recommends findings to the LC. The LC, a political body, makes the decision to impeach.

> in Hong Kong it requires 'serious breach of law or dereliction of duty'

Practically speaking, based on history and the motivations of those involved, popularity figures into impeachment processes. Being unpopular doesn’t lead to impeachment alone. But pretty much anything could fit into Hong Kong’s “dereliction of duty” standard, for instance.

[1] https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment#Hong_Kong


Remove from power. I might have used the word incorrectly, but the desired outcome is the same.


The difficulty with this statement is it requires that the people have the ability to affect their leaders through voting which in Hong Kong's case does not.

In HK, the people can vote for a Chief Executive of HK, but the pool that you can vote for is now only allowed to be "pro China", this is what the umbrella revolution was protesting and sadly failed. "Universal suffrage but only with the people we let you vote for."

Today, impeachment of the Chief Executive is overtly not possible[2] since China controls whether that vote is allowed to take place with pro China people doing the voting.

By overtly, I mean I personally cannot see a way forward, but I admit, I'm very surprised to see this bill be rescinded. Tactically speaking, I would have expected the same thing from the Umbrella Revolution. Which was basically let the protestors occupy the streets and let the public become annoyed to the point where the oppressed (protestors) become the oppressors.

Why wasn't the waiting game played this time around? I'm not sure. I'm super happy they were successful in this, and I hope/pray for long term change as my heritage is from HK. But... I'm extremely skeptical.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2014_Hong_Kong_protests [2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment#Hong_Kong


Just to be clear, the people cannot vote for the CE - from a limited pool, or otherwise. That was the proposed change in 2014, breaking the previous promise of universal suffrage, but the changes were shelved as a result of the protests, leaving the previous system in place - nominations and selection are still both made by the 1200-member 'election committee' which is widely considered to be a Beijing rubber-stamp group.


> By overtly, I mean I personally cannot see a way forward, but I admit, I'm very surprised to see this bill be rescinded. Tactically speaking, I would have expected the same thing from the Umbrella Revolution. Which was basically let the protestors occupy the streets and let the public become annoyed to the point where the oppressed (protestors) become the oppressors. > > Why wasn't the waiting game played this time around? I'm not sure. I'm super happy they were successful in this, and I hope/pray for long term change as my heritage is from HK. But... I'm extremely skeptical.

As we are not Xi, we could only speculate why this time is different, that the anti-extradition protest in 2019 achieved something (the suspension of the law), unlike the Umbrella protest in 2014 which achieved effectively nothing.

One key difference is that, the 2014 Umbrella protest concerns only Hong Kong--China internal politics: other parties (US, UK, Canada, etc.) have less to say for Hong Kong's universal suffrage; meanwhile the 2019 anti-extradition protest concerns citizens of other countries, so they have a say in this particular event.

Quoting Simon Shen (in Chinese [1], section six there, translation mine + Google translate):

> VI. Diplomacy of Diaspora: The Dispute of the "Fugitive Offenders" Breaks Through the Diplomatic Missions in Hong Kong Standardized by "the Vienna Convention"

> ...

> However, the "Fugitive Offenders Ordinance" dispute is a rare opportunity for these diplomats to find reasons to comment on Hong Kong, because the regulations directly cover their own citizens and chambers of commerce in Hong Kong. With this starting point, comments are their basic responsibility and there is room for manoeuvre. It is said that the Office of the Special Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Hong Kong will release the doubts from the collective and their meetings. One of the reasons is naturally that the SAR Government can speak at the level of the Basic Law and is not interested in the other party. The SAR Government does not seem to be interested in a local regulation covering foreign businessmen and expatriates. This has already exceeded the pure legal issue, but opened a dangerous Pandora's box because "protecting the diaspora" is well known to the international community. "Universal Key", many acts that could have been classified as "interference in internal affairs" have become crowned with such reasonable reasons. For example, the United States intervenes in Venezuela to protect the diaspora, and Russia annexes Crimea to protect the diaspora. In recent years, embassies around the country have also stepped up publicity to protect the diaspora.

> More importantly, this time the countries have made great comments on Hong Kong and set a number of precedents. In addition to the collective actions of the EU countries, the United Kingdom and Canada are also issued a "Joint Statement" by Hong Kong foreign ministers to Hong Kong, suggesting that the British will start "England after the Brexit". The possibility of the Australian-New Zealand Commonwealth is an example of other diplomatic work with Hong Kong; other diplomats seem to have a lot of cases in the past month. During the Disputes of the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance, the SAR Government has been unable to successfully dispel the doubts of various countries, and even more and more, the consulates in Hong Kong have created more working relationships because of the need for direct exchanges. The importance of this consular mission was first activated in the twenty years after the reunification. It would be almost impossible without a draft that covered all the people of the world and caused a lot of local controversy.

And from a previous discussion, some one claimed that the real reason that the 2019 protest achieved something has to do with Taiwan: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20196738

[1]: https://simonshen.blog/2019/06/16/%e5%be%9e%e5%9c%8b%e9%9a%9...


I've read most the legislature is pro-Beijing, which is how the bill passed in the first place. I doubt these same people are going to impeach her for it.


Just to be clear here - the bill has not passed the Legislative Council, however the bill is expected to pass if and when it is listed for a vote due to the pro-Beijing majority. (Lam's announcement on "suspension" rather than "withdrawal" means that debate on the bill will not be resumed indefinitely, however if the government changes its mind again it could list it for a vote in the Legislative Council immediately.)

LegCo's impeachment power was dead letter law from the start - I can't think of a circumstance where the pro-Beijing camp would ever use it, short of perhaps some situation where a previously pro-Beijing chief executive has gone rogue and refuses to resign...


I live in South Korea. In 2016, a lot of members in Park's party voted to impeach the president Park. (In fact, impeachment couldn't have passed without such.) It's pretty simple really. Anyone from competitive seat will do pretty much anything if they are 100% sure they won't be re-elected otherwise.


ROK doesn't quite compare, being a democracy. In fact I was quite surprised to see president Park impeached and saw it as a sign of a functional demicracy. Failing to impeach her would have probably ended in riots.


Do I value my life or value my career?


If one aspires to this sort of leadership, then the hope is that person values freedom over both of those things.


Ideally Westerners are gaga for the freedom myth where the history of the freedom is that the Roman empire conquered tons of people and then adopted the freedom myths of the people they conquered as something to be lauded, despite the fact that those people were subdued and conquered. Mostly you either belong to one empire or another. It's too bad the British did not try to contest Hong Kong and maybe delay turning it over as long as possible until there was a cold war with China and then this empire could annex it.


With conversations about some people that disappeared after some protests that happened in 2014.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Causeway_Bay_Books_disappearan...


I can recall from a personal experience while working for a UN agency.

We had a form with country dropdown selector, and it included Taiwan.

We had huge pressure from the local Chinese embassy to remove it.

And they also called up some really high up UN officials, all for a dropdown!



Interesting.

The Republic of China's most recent request for admission was turned down in 2007,[1] but a number of European governments—led by the United States—protested to the UN's Office of Legal Affairs to force the global body and its secretary-general to stop using the reference “Taiwan is a part of China”.[2]


Large thread from earlier today: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20196271


Why can't Hong Kong vote for independence?


There are quite a few reasons, but they all boil down to the fact that Beijing wants Hong Kong to be part of China.

Culture: From what I understand, China sees itself not as a nation-state, but as a civilization-state. The government has a desire to unite all Chinese people together in a single nation. This is why they still claim Taiwan as part of China. Letting Hong Kong be independent is a step back from that goal.

History: During British colonial rule, China opposed all attempts at introducing full democracy to Hong Kong. It doesn't have strong democratic institutions in the way that you might expect. Yes it has a legislature, but half of the seats are essentially reserved for businesses (called 'functional constituencies'). The head of state is chosen from a pre-selected group of people who are loyal to Beijing. So even if the people all agreed on independence being the best path (and that isn't something that people agree on, as best I can tell)

Geography: Hong Kong is a relatively small geographic area with a very large population. It doesn't have the means to support itself. For example, most (all?) of its fresh water comes from mainland China. A lot of food comes from the mainland too. If Beijing doesn't want Hong Kong to be independent, they could simply stop supporting it with it's infrastructure.

Economic: Hong Kong has a thriving economy, and it's history has left it with a special economic status in several countries (including the USA). This makes it very useful to Beijing. They can skirt trade laws and funnel money through Hong Kong as needed. An independent Hong Kong could make this more difficult.


For the same sort of reason that Texas can't?


I understand the technicalities, but Wilson’s Doctrine clearly applies to the citizens of Texas in 2019 as much as to the citizens of Austria-Hungary a century earlier. If it became absolutely certain that an overwhelming majority of Texans wanted to secede, the right answer would be to draw up ways to allow them to do so in the smoothest and most legal way, not to send the US Army to quash it.

I understand the Civil War happened and all that, but it was a different time and hopefully the Western world works on better principles now. If the USSR had let Afghanistan and Czechoslovakia free to chart their own destiny, maybe it wouldn’t have eventually collapsed under the weight of its own hypocrisy and lies.


> If it became absolutely certain that an overwhelming majority of Texans wanted to secede,

why does it need to be an overwhelming majority (what does that even mean exactly?) and not a simple majority? In case a non overwhelming majority of Texans wanted to secede, should their will be thwarted by a minority of their compatriots? It does not sound very democratic.


Democracy does not mean "51% rules", that's a common misconception. Democracy is about building legitimacy from as an uncontrovertial source as possible - from the clear and free choice of the body politic of a community rather than from some sort of divine revelation. Legitimacy comes from all political actors, from the minority accepting the will of the majority (because it knows its fundamental rights will be respected even in defeat, and that the "battle" could be fought again once people changed their minds) as much as from the majority itself. When we forget that, that's when the XX century nightmares rear their ugly heads.

51% on a binary choice for huge constitutional change is simply not an unequivocal result; it's well below the margin for error/fraud and reduces the legitimacy of the choice pretty dramatically. Obviously every group is free to set the rules it prefers, but taking a massive step on such a tiny majority is a recipe for strife and division. On such a small margin you can rule for a few years, not take decisions that are supposed to be set in stone and affect everyone forevermore.

Realistically, if you have more than 40-45% of the country opposed to a massive constitutional change, you are probably not getting enough legitimacy to make the process fully democratic in nature. There are further tests down the line, but a large margin is the very first one to meet if you really want to find "the will of the people" (which in itself is a troublesome construct, but that's another story). Once you get close to "2 in 3", then it's harder to argue.


Indeed. Take a look at Brexit, where only 37% of the electorate voted to leave the EU, it has been politically impossible to pass the legislation.

The electorate don't want it and the politicians can't get the votes to pass the withdrawal treaty.


Wilson’s Doctrine clearly applies to the citizens of Texas in 2019 as much as to the citizens of Austria-Hungary a century earlier.

How do you figure? I don't think any mainstream view of 'self-determination' and certainly not Wilson's just up and grants national sovereignty for the asking. Texas is plenty autonomous.


“I don’t think so” is not an argument.

Texas is a well-defined territory with a well-defined set of cultural characteristics. Its population has as much of a right to self-determination as Catalunya, Scotland, Croatia, Slovakia or Kosovo, should a consensus emerge in the region. This is hardly controversial.


It's hardly controversial that whatever Wilson's ideas were, they did not include Texas becoming an independent country. I also don't think it's controversial that all the intricate thinking, principles and international proclamations on self-determination don't actually boil down to 'any group or region can easily turn themselves into a sovereign country, if they really want to and work hard at it'.


Obviously there are parameters, but Wilson's principles have been one of the pillars of modern international relations. Discounting them would mean throwing us back to "might makes right", which is a recipe for permanent war.

If you want to discuss why Texas does not meet parameters for independent statehood in your opinion, I'm happy to listen; but you cannot unilaterally say an unexplained "no" without looking very clearly tyrannical.


We still live in a world where might makes right. We also live in a world where the mighty identify themselves with certain principles and have certain incentives...which is why our current state of permanent war (since 2001 at least) is relatively mild


> We still live in a world where might makes right.

I'd like to think that's not the case. The proof is that we have states that, if it were only due to pure power, would have no business existing (the Baltic ones, Singapore, most Caribbean ones, etc).

I am not so silly to think that might is not a factor in international relations, but I also think we must strive to be better every day, resolving our problems in ways that don't always boil down to pure power. Otherwise we're just left with tribes and spears.


> This is hardly controversial

> Catalunya

> Kosovo

I'm a bit confused. Are you saying that it is non-controversial that Catalunya or Kosovo can secede and then using that to argue that it is non-controversial that Texas can secede?


In one of those cases, the US themselves deployed weaponry to protect the population's own right to self-determination, so at least to US audiences it should read as uncontroversial, surely.

Catalunya is still a bit fresh, but I think it is uncontroversial to say that quashing such demands has historically resulted in bad things happening that we probably wouldn't want to see happening again. In the age of the internet, you don't increase legitimacy by deploying batons.

I say this as a natural anti-independentist - I think the real challenge of our time is scaling government up, not down; and when one starts dividing and drawing lines, one is playing an extremely dangerous game that might well end up in Balkanization, ethnic cleansing included. But it is a fact that not all nation-states are as cohesive as France, and self-determination demands are legitimate when they reach certain numbers. The nation-state itself is a concept borne of very different times, which might be nearing its sell-by date. It shouldn't be scandalous to concede that a line on a map could be thicker in one place and thinner elsewhere, if that means a more peaceful existence and better cooperation at a higher level.


I’m not necessarily disagreeing with you. I’m disagreeing with your belief in the non-controversial nature of your statement.

> The US deployed weaponry to...

Is an admission that an position is controversial enough that a major world power thought it prudent to enforce that opinion with violent force or the active threat of force. "Kosovo je Srbija" is still an opinion you’ll find expressed in earnest.

Would it be controversial for Texas to have the right to secede? Given internal (racial, economic) divisions within Texas, I’d say yes. Secession can also cause violence by removing a hegemon who enforces peace among different groups.


> an admission that an position is controversial enough that a major world power thought it prudent to enforce that opinion with violent force

But that is the point of Wilson's: the US will (or rather should) back the right to self-determination. That has been the case for a century, and completely doing away with it (or witholding it from its very own citizens) would be a regression.

> Secession can also cause violence

Absolutely, as we've seen in the Balkans. And that's why I'm not a fan of independentist movements, in general. I just don't think one can sustain Wilson in some scenarios and not in others, as a principle. One can calculate pros and cons and allow secession only if certain conditions are met, but we cannot dismiss it with prejudice.


> the US will (or rather should) back the right to self-determination

Indeed. There are powerful institutional reasons why the US does so, including the desires of the American electorate and the structure of US commerce.

> I just don't think one can sustain Wilson in some scenarios and not in others, as a principle. One can calculate pros and cons and allow secession only if certain conditions are met, but we cannot dismiss it with prejudice.

Right, but primary among those conditions must be the power forms of power that could be brought to bear. This is more complex than "If the US 7th fleet were to sail to Hong Kong, it could be sunk by the area-denial power of the People's Liberation Army Navy." because power is more complex than that. But the fact that the PLA could invade Hong Kong is a significant weight on the scale. And so any exercise of power in order to back Hong Kongers right of self-determination is going to have to be more skillfully constructed than anything I could come up with. and it might not be possible. It depends partly on how subtle and skillful the diplomats serving under Trump administration can be.

And the results of that are not going to be consistent with the results of trying to support the self-determiniation of Estonians breaking away from a collapsing USSR. After all, the US didn't succeed at supporting the self-determination of Estonians prior to the 80s.


Austria-Hungary was not a state with a functional and loyal military in 1919. The reason why Wilson's Doctrine applied to it was that there were French, Romanian, Italian, and Serbian troops occupying parts of its territory.


It was as much for that as to avoid a repeat of the squabbling over territories that had caused the war in the first place. The main point was that territories should not be assigned just because this or that army controls it (which would have inevitably degenerated again, as it did), but because the population wishes to be so.

The failure of Versailles to fairly apply that rule (and later, of Germany and USSR to respect it, before and after WWII) resulted in tragic events that I hope nobody wants to see repeated. The model for a modern approach should be the Chzech/Slovakia divorce, surely, rather than e.g. Chechenya?


Do I think that a velvet divorce is better than a civil war? Yes. Do I think that “the strong do what they will and the weak suffer what they must” is a detestable thing? Of course. But wanting a thing doesn’t make it so.

Examining the question “can Hong Kong meaningfully vote for independence?” inherently requires examining the power relationships involved: Who has power? How do they view themselves? What incentives constrain/impel their actions?


> wanting a thing doesn’t make it so.

If enough people want it, yes it does.

> inherently requires examining the power relationships

Indeed, but no country exists in a vacuum, not even a superpower like China. The world has a role to play.


> If enough people want it, yes it does.

No it doesn't. Thats like saying that if you spend enough money, you can produce housing. That is only true in a world where money allows you to incentivize and organize a group of people to assemble housing. (A significant chunk of HN does not live in that world)

Likewise, if enough people want a thing, that allows some group of them to build a power structure which is able to incentivize some of those people to make the thing happen. But it is a fundamental law that in order to do any kind of work over time, you need to exert power.


But Texas can vote for a Governor & for the government of Texas in general.


Texas can't??


It cannot: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perpetual_Union. Texas in fact voted to secede during the civil war, in a public referendum where secession got 75% of the vote. (Or course, it should be noted that the 30% of the population that was enslaved could not vote.) After Texas was defeated in the civil war, it was governed by a governor appointed by the union president for five years until it was readmitted to the United States.


The Texas secession movement doesn't claim a right to secede. Texas retains the right to split into five states. They plan to use the threat of adding 8 right-leaning senators to the US senate to convince democrats to let them leave.


Not quite that straightforward https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Texas_divisionism


Texas demographics are changing. I don't know if they would be able to add eight right senators now, and definitely not in the future. Of course that may depend on a definion of right (right of center or right of Bernie) .


Yeah. It's unlikely to work.


It depends very heavily on your definition of "right." Hispanic people in general are pretty conservative, and Hispanic people in Texas are particularly so. For example, Hispanic registered voters are less likely than white registered voters to support marijuana legalization, and more likely to support restrictions or bans on abortion: https://www.pewhispanic.org/2014/10/16/chapter-2-latinos-vie.... On the criminal justice front, hispanics are more likely than whites to view the elimination of mandatory minimums for drug crimes as a bad thing, and twice as likely to support jail time for minor drug possession: https://www.people-press.org/2014/04/02/section-2-views-of-m....

Hispanic people are more likely to attend religious services at least once week and to pray daily: https://www.pewforum.org/religious-landscape-study/racial-an.... Hispanic people strongly support school choice: https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/11/school-choice-strong-.... Hispanic people list preventing terrorism as a top priority, alongside education and higher than healthcare or immigration: https://www.pewhispanic.org/2017/02/23/latino-priorities-for.... Among Democrats, Hispanic people are much more likely than whites to list the economy as the issue that "matters most" and much less likely to list the environment: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/06/business/economy/black-de....

Another key issue is aging. The median age for Hispanic people is 28 (squarely millennial), versus 42 (later side of Gen X) for non-Hispanic whites. That means, to a significant degree, the more liberal attitudes you see for Hispanic people as a group are a function of age and generational membership. Everyone gets more conservative with age, and you will see that same trend among Hispanic people.

Trump managed to get 28% of the Hispanic vote, despite running on an aggressively anti-Hispanic and anti-immigrant platform: https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/02/24/2020-hisp.... His approval rating among Hispanics is now 35-45% depending on the poll. Greg Abbott won re-election in Texas with 42% of the Hispanic vote. Due to the various factors discussed above, I think the increasing Hispanic representation in the Texas vote is going to have much less of an impact than people assume.


Isn't Texas only a red state because of gerrymandering?


No. It's a mixed bag still favoring the Republicans.

2018 Texas governor election:

4.65 million (55.8%) votes for the Republican Abbott, to 3.56 million (42.5%) for Valdez.

2018 Texas Senate race:

4.26 million votes for Cruz vs 4.05 million for O'Rourke. That's with the left pouring enermous support and resources behind O'Rourke. Cruz raised $37 million, O'Rourke raised $80 million.

2014 Texas Senate race:

2.86 million (61.6%) votes for the Republican Cornyn vs 1.58 million (34.4%) votes for Alameel.

Republicans are still winning the popular vote.



No. Gerrymandering is something a political majority does to hurt the minority.

Texas was a reliably blue state until Bill Clinton was elected president in 1992 without winning Texas. Before that it was thought no democrat could win without winning Texas. Democrats stopped spending money in the state and George W. Bush became governor in 1994. Republicans have controlled both houses of congress and every statewide position since the 90s.

There's a chance Trump might change that as he is less popular among republicans in Texas than he is nationwide.


Yes, states cannot leave the union once they are admitted. There is no mechanism in place in the Constitution or via a law for a state to leave/become independent.


Texas can vote to leave, but the United States has more and bigger guns, so they can’t actually leave.


Remember what happened the last time a bunch of states wanted to claim independence?


1. The legislative council is controlled by the CCP for a number of reasons.

2. Last time the people tried to do organize a vote, China performed the largest DDoS attack at the time, trying to bring down the vote system backend.

3. Also most Hong Kong people don't want independence. Most just want CCP to keep hands off.


the protest was not just about anti china: https://medium.com/@sidneyfong/hong-kongs-extradition-bill-i...


Does anyone know the mechanism by which she could be forced to withdraw?

Impeachment is usually for breaking the law, not putting forth a bad one...


She can be impeached by the Legislative Council, which is unlikely given the Pro-Beijing faction holds a majority.


ok, thanks, and how are the members of the legislative council appointed?


Half the members are elected directly as representatives of geographical constituencies, while the other half are elected to "functional constituencies" where voting is restricted to individuals working in certain professions and companies/organisations in certain industries.

The functional constituencies create an imbalance that favours the pro-Beijing side.


Withdraw the extradition bill, or forced to step down from office?

The bill is not in the legislature yet, so it is up to her whether the bill gets brought to a vote. It sounds like even pro-Beijing lawmakers are growing weary of this bill, saying that this isn't worth the fight that's being made over it. The Article 23 National Security law is more of a priority for a lot of them, but that was similarly unpopular the last time it was brought up.

The most likely outcome with Lam leaving the position of Chief Executive is for her to resign. This could be on her own accord, because her legislation has proved so unpopular, or because of pressure from Beijing. This is not making Xi look very good--both internally and internationally. One of the most consistent demands of the protesters right now is for her to step down. It would not be surprising for her to do so if these protests continue.


Being one of the protestor out of 2m and feet still hurt after 8 hour walking and stopping among children but mostly young man, let me try to supplement that article why especially those not mentioned in the article.

This related to two most common slogans shouted by the 2m. (The 3rd most common one is “Hong Kong Add Oil” not an issue per sec. )

(a) Withdrawn not suspension

In 2003 the first million protest after handover, a even worst law called article 23 was called for. It was ignored just last jun 9 walk, but later withdraw. There is no million walk into street since.

Hence the precedent is clear. Withdrawn should be done. Instead the administration just do a suspension. I do not know why prof chan used the phrase indefinitely. That is not in chinese. In fact the message that this is suspicion only temporary is clear. Whilst no timetable, the chief executive said her experience of consultation would take until end of this year. Not indefinitely. There is even a statement by the Chinese authority also stressed this temporary arrangement and in fact promise to chase after the behind-the-scene power.

Hence the major slogan of the 2nd protest is to withdrawn the bill not suspension.

(b) No riot and release those arrested

There are the issue of the declaration of riot around 3 or 6 p.m. Lots of people will be charged under this dreadful law where 7-10 years may be involved. Even standby could be charged if you are on site after that time. The law was drafted by the British against the chinese communist in 1960s during the cultural revolution era. Police can declare and arrest any gathering ... funny is that there are exception to this like religion gathering which the police cannot declare as riot. But in general police can declare and do arrest. Some of the cases should be charged as police excess of force, like aim and shoot a protestor from behind when he is a long way and just walking. Now using the law it will be the other way round. The guy might be charged and found guilty as part of riot gathering. (In fact, no one told on the scene that a riot is going on. Nothing throwing, no burning, no glass broken, ... etc. You may see throwing stuff in tv but that is much earlier and another group. The bulk of the peaceful demonstrator are not involved. In fact the official press interview at 3 pm by the commissioner of police is stated as disturbance. There is some argument spent out who declare riot in the press release later at 6 pm. Hence I am not sure about the timing. Just to distance himself, the chief secretary (deputy to the top lady CE) said the top management do not know about the declaration. They do support whatever the commissioner did.)

We asked for the withdrawn of that declaration and release the arrested.

(One of the major upset is to two arrest of patient in Hosiptal. The doctor and nurse do not report the case and somehow the police come and arrest them. ... too many details here but by and large the medical profession seriously not like this. There are procedure and the police did not follow them. Relationship is very poisonous now between the two.)

There are other usual demands like held accountable of the case. And other slogans, some quite nasty as Cantonese is a very nasty language. When 10646 was defined, some found it odd by the hk extension is full of male and female description. Hundreds of them. Sorry for the kids to expose during the 2m match. But that is the language. Can’t no blood wine or poem ...

*

Back to the extradition law, not mention is the public object to it as we do not trust the chinese legal system.

(Btw usually extradition law apply to foreigner not citizen).

Further not mention is the diplomat of Eu, Britain and official from different camps of USA are raised official diplomatic objection. It is not just about local citizen. There are 85,000 American lives in Hong Kong currently. There is no consultation whatsoever. And it seemed the discussion is about reading the bill to them.

In this regards, even strange is the ignorance of Taiwan in the process, even though it was used as the key reason for the rush.

Btw, found out today that even macau our sister region has thought about it and do not enacted similar law.

I think a better law will at least consult stakeholder so majority are on your side. Then you can crush ...

Anyway as commented living between powers like china and USA is not easy. You can access Facebook then not just 20 km north (hong kong is that small). Really not good to unite literally the whole world against you and also your own city wholly against you as well.

As mentioned in the article after the umbrella movement there are a lot of bad blood. But she not just united the democratic camp but even the pro-establishment camp.

Great political achievement in a sense. Too tired and hope it is not too confusing.

Hong Kong Add Oil.


> I do not know why prof chan used the phrase indefinitely. That is not in chinese. In fact the message that this is suspicion only temporary is clear.

“Indefinitely” in this context does not mean “infinitely”, it means “without a predefined end time” if it is merely suspected that the suspension will be lifted at so uncertain future time, “indefinitely” appears correct.


The criticism isn't that the translation was a lie, but rather it didn't capture the spirit of what she was saying (possibly with the intention to mislead international media). Indefinitely is frequently understood to mean infinitely, so by using this English word it is certainly misleading.


Almost all press focus on the fact that there are two millions people on the street and the possibility of power abuse caused by this bill. None of them pay any attention to pros & cons of this bill from a rational perspective. People barely remembers that the origin of this bill is to extradite one brutal killer of a Taiwan girl. No one is seeking middle ground or constructive result.

People see, people fear, people destroy, without any regard to pragmatism and rationality. Great.


It was the brutal killing of a HK girl not a Taiwan girl. The murderer killed his girlfriend while traveling to Taiwan for Valentine Day.

Also Taiwan's government has explicitly stated that this bill is not needed to bring the murderer to justice and that this has only been used as an excuse to pass this law.

Additionally Taiwan said that if the bill pass they would refuse to use it to bring this murderer to justice as they are against this bill.

And finally, per the bill, the central government of the country need to approve the extradition. China doesn't recognize the central government of Taiwan so as per the law community in HK, it's not sure how this bill could ever be used in cases like that murder.

So, yes people have discussed it, people have their facts straight about this bill.


Taiwan doesn‘t want that extradition law either.

https://qz.com/1642413/why-taiwan-is-so-outspoken-on-hong-ko...


I do not understand the sentiment on HK March.

No one bat an eye when a China citizen arrested on Canada soil to be extradite to US.

When China trying to pass a extradition bill on a China territory, the world goes batshit.

The reason that most journalist peddling is you may be trial unfairly in mainland China. You always get a fair trial. China law is fair in China. Shariah law is fair in the Islamic country. Plead the fifth is fair in US.

The problem comes when one thinks their own version of law is better than their neighbouring country law.

And those who comment about how hk democracy and China CCP. Democracy is not a be all system. In a Democratic system, the 51% will always dictate against the other 49%. I grew up in "progressive" multi racial country...so progressive that the majority race which have the Democratic power pass bills that give their race significant advantage over other citizen. Slippery slope system.

Disclaimer: I'm a 3rd gen Chinese descent grew up in a Democratic country and living in China now.


I agree that one should respect other countries law, from their point of view. But when you are not allowed (read killed) to protest against the ones who decides the law, that is a big problem whatever the laws are.

Democracy is not only about majority votes, it is about free speech, the ability to review and criticize the government. It is about that the people do not get censored information but where the people are the bosses of the government, not the other way around.




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