Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Tsang Consistently Off the Mark

John Tsang (middle) answers questions from the media after his speech
Financial Secretary John Tsang Chun-wah delivered his much anticipated budget speech today.

His consistency continues by being his trademark very fiscally conservative and completely missing the mark in projecting the budget surplus.

Critics must be tired of hearing themselves repeat their refrain of Tsang not doing enough for the poor and the elderly, and this year the financial secretary totally underestimated the budget surplus again -- six times more than his projected HK$9.1 billion. How he gets this wrong every time makes people wonder if he is really qualified for his job.

In any event, he finished his speech by recalling the "social bickering" of the past year by saying, "...events in recent years seem to have impacted on the system and common values. This is a huge concern to me".

Then he says Hong Kong ranks in the top tier globally in terms of economic success. "However, behind and beyond material fulfillment, the people of this city, our younger generations in particular, are hungering for spiritual contentment. This is what a mature society should manifest, and this is a change that needs to be addressed and dealt with. Nonetheless, conflicts should be resolved through conversation rather than confrontation, and this is the point that we must all come to terms with."

Interesting he makes this observation post-Occupy and acknowledges young people want more than just material things. He also says these conflicts should be resolved through conversation, not confrontation. Does he have any bright ideas on doing that?

But then he says it is up to the younger generations to not only enjoy the good fruits planted by their predecessors, but also work hard for tomorrow's harvest.

"I hope that they will continue to sow the seeds, plough the land and plant the trees so their future generations can enjoy the fruits of their labour. Our vision is to make this city a better place with a brighter future for everyone where our legend lives on."

Right... How can they sow their seeds for a better future, if young people cannot afford a place of their own, get decent-paying jobs and so on? If the government loosened its purse strings a bit more, it could offer more loans to first-time homeowners who can easily pay a mortgage, but don't have enough for down payments. This is the biggest hurdle most young people -- singletons, couples and young families -- are facing at the moment.

Tsang totally missed the mark on helping them get their roots planted in Hong Kong... so much for the abundant harvest he was hoping for...



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