China - the irresistible rise

The issue with HK is really there is no way to please everyone as usual. From my point of view, HK was promised 50 years of non interference after 97, but obviously that did not materialize for justifications offered, that honestly no one will be able to dispute, as with most policies and decisions in China.

I have friends and business associates on both ends of the spectrum. One who was holding a senior position in a huge MNC company, earning a good salary, tried to get a transfer to the UK office, failed and decided to resign and moved with his family under the UK BNO program without a job. He is now working in the UK helping out in a convenience store while his wife actively looking for a teaching position. He told me that even with lesser money, and the odd shouts they get ‘go back home’ on the streets, he just hope his children get to grow up in a free-er place. I told him, there is no perfect place, and whatever you want, I hope you get it and be happy.

Another stayed put. He is rich and obviously could move to places like Singapore and such with properties in these places. But while he struggled initially with the transition of being in a very democratic place to what it is now, he has grown to adapt and focus on what he feels is more important to his family. Security and survivability. Hk is home, always to him and he does not feel just the same anywhere else. Same thing I told him, your decision, I hope you are happy and get what you want.

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Welcome to The Twilight Zone. Trapped in Shanghai Disney indefinitely.

An interesting article on the relationship between China and the western world, and the mislead idea (among others driven forward by Biden in the early 2000s) that enhanced trade with China would automatically lead to more freedom, transparency and democracy in that country. Of course, all that was made first and foremost for the massive profit of big corporations who wanted access to a cheap and obedient workforce…

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The past few years has been a real rest for the theory that global trade reduces the prospect for war. In a way it has, but for the wrong reasons. Rather than the need to protect trade making countries behave as good actors, the trade ties countries have allow them to push boundaries in how much they can get away with knowing their trade partners don’t want economic disturbances.

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More democracy, less autocracy. Hard to understand why China persists with the lockdowns when there is no scientific case for them. Leaders living in an echochamber.

Maybe because they are aware of the deficiencies in its vaccine and health system as a whole.

They are also addicted to power and control.

It’s interesting that despite all the suspicion in the west that China was benefiting from the pandemic, it may turn out to be the biggest threat to the CP since Tiananmen square.

Ps looking at the video of the protests, it would be ironic if they cause a wider spread of the virus and thus further lockdowns and further discontent. It’s starting to look like a vicious circle for the CP.

BBC journalist beaten up and arrested ‘for his own good to stop him catching Covid’, China claims | Daily Mail Online

Here’s the story from the bbc itself.

This is a fascinating turn of events: the world cup is shown live on TV all over China. It shows images of large crowds from over the world without masks, which makes many Chinese ask themselves why all these people can gather like that while they remain under severe lockdown measures.

Then, a fire in a house causes several deaths, trapped in their lockdown measures and not rescued because of these same measures. The perfect nightmare scenario for anyone currently in lockdown.

And now, the whole country seems to start expressing its anger against these measures. At the same time, covid rates mount exponentially, thus increasing anger within the population even further, while also increasing the general feeling that the government has no control over the situation.

The government has already stopped showing pictures of unmasked people at the world cup by shutting them out during the games, and start talking about ‘foreign forces’ inciting people to revolt. But that won’t be enough to stop crowds gathering for protest.

This is a potential atomic bomb for the CP dictators.

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Simple - they want to control people. It’s nothing to do with Covid.

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I don’t really get it. Isn’t Covid something that we are now living with? I don’t discount it, but get vaccinated, keep on top of boosters, and then generally go about your business… hasn’t that been the stage we have been at, for some time?

Granted, some nasty variant might spring up again that brings lockdown measures into play again, but basically, Covid is something we are now living with. Yes, be sensible, and yes, some people will die, especially at risk people, but generally we are now at the stage where life goes on.

So with all that said, why all the fuss in China?

What is different for them?
Is there something they know that the wider world does not?

Understand that the governments enact public health policy based on a balance of what Public Health say is needed to address the issue vs what they think the population can be convinced to abide by. The two governments you are most familiar with have both weighed their policy very heavily towards the latter. So we should not mistake a more hands off attitude towards mitigation from a western government as being representative of what public health thinks is needed. When you dont have to worry about the response of the people the avenues for effective mitigation efforts are much wider. China may well be shown to have miscalculated how far they can push its citizens, but it is their attitude to what they think they can demand of its citizens that is dictating its different approach rather than any unique knowledge of the risks of covid. That knowledge is shared here, but few people in government are willing to spend the political capital asking its people to do any more than they already have, so we’ve backed into the “let’s live with it” approach.

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I have watched a couple of documentaries on this and there are a few view points.

Their vaccine simply is not very good. >90% of population are meant to be vaccinated but its not and mRNA vaccine. China to date has yet to authorise Phizer or Moderna vaccine. They instead are developing their own mRNA one. It’s all about national pride. Given population size it is argued their health system will struggle to cope.

The second view point is that Xi wants to pull China back from consumerism and engagement with the west. He wants to instill traditional values and consolidate power. To do so he is willing to sacrifice economic output to do so. The pandemic provides an ideal opportunity to exert greater control over the population. Xi recently went against convention with a third term and surrounded himself with yes men.

My view point is that it’s a probably a combination of the two.

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In addition to that, the reluctance to admit that they were wrong in continuing lockdowns and actually listen to their people.

This could be a sign of disengagement.