Sunday, 25 September 2011

History to Repeat Itself

Days after Leung Chun-ying resigned as convenor of the Executive Council in a bid to run for the position of Chief Executive, Henry Tang Ying-yen has yet to quit his post as Chief Secretary to join the race.

Tang is keeping people speculating on whether he will run or not even though he's already been tipped to be Beijing's favourite.

"As the chief secretary, I carry great responsibility, and therefore I have to be cautious in considering my personal future, while ensuring the government can function as usual," Tang said Saturday. "I will make a decision on this issue as soon as possible, and will make an announcement at an appropriate time."

Although the two-man race has already been decided, many Hong Kongers are grumbling about the prospects of Tang becoming chief executive.

Most are unhappy about Tang's inability to govern and his many faux pas in making comments about Hong Kong citizens.

That's because he comes from a privileged background -- his father, Tang Hsiang-chien is very connected to the Communist Party of China and through the money he made in textiles he helped the motherland jump start its economy in the 80s by giving them much-needed capital.

Apparently Tang senior's guanxi is much stronger than Tung Chee-hwa's, whose father Tung Chao-yung started Orient Overseas Container Liner (OOCL). After Tung Chao-yung died the company fell into financial troubles, and the CPC bailed the younger Tung out who was running OOCL at the time. As a result, he was named Hong Kong's first Chief Executive in 1997.

Seems like family favours play a more important role than actual political and administrative ability.

While Tung Chee-hwa was mostly looked on as a grandpa and didn't seem aware of what was going on, Henry Tang just gets his foot in his mouth all the time, kind of like the Prince Charles of Hong Kong.

His comment that young people should aspire to be like Li Ka-shing didn't go down well as Li married a rich cousin and from there got his capital to start a plastic flower business.

And with tycoons like Li practically monopolizing the entire city from mobile phones to supermarkets, property and electronics, how can any young upstart have any chance of competing and even surpassing Li these days?

It's a David and Goliath story, with Tang as the narrator completely unaware of how the story ends.

With our possible future leader having this kind of thinking, what is going to happen to Hong Kong?

Tang was born with a silver spoon -- no wait -- gold spoon in his mouth -- and is completely oblivious to the financial strains and stresses of young people in Hong Kong today. He doesn't see how difficult it is to raise enough money to buy a flat, or even the rising costs of everything making it harder for seniors to eke out a living. And the 20 percent of people who are working poor in the city who have no access to social services or subsidies?

But is it his fault he's Beijing's choice?

It appears to be another political favour done behind back doors.

And we, the over 7 million residents in Hong Kong have to suffer our fate... yet again.

1 comment:

  1. this type of political grooming may not be bad at all. look at russia- putin is being resurrected running for the next presidency. contrasting the democratically elected u.s. president obama with an all time low popular approval rate, it is not as bad.