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The umbrella movement, the Hong Kong protest for univeral suffrage

hsuhsu Registered User regular
edited November 2014 in Debate and/or Discourse
So it's day 2 of Occupy Hong Kong, which is really a misnomer, as unlike similarly named protests, this one has a solid purpose: universal suffrage for the 2017 elections.

The protests basically started when Bejing reneged on their promise to allow the mayor/council of Hong Kong to be elected in 2017, and instead only allowed the citizens to vote on candidates vetted by Beijing (who'd all be communist party loyalists), rather than allow anyone to run as a candidate.

Day 1 included peaceful protests, in coincidental imitation of other recent protests.
Bypt2n1IMAE_MX-.jpg
Along with the police firing tear gas and rubber bullets, to break up the peaceful protestors (notice how pristine the nearby buildings are, which should tell you how peaceful the protests are), arresting 89 protestors within the first 24 hours.
10632058_1527041090847137_1287891852_n.jpg
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Day 2 has been pretty peaceful, as the cops got rid of the riot gear. The current estimate is that several tens of thousands protestors have taken to the streets. Pretty impressive for just the second day of a protest.
_77900391_77900389.jpg
Notice how young the crowd is, the vast majority being college students skipping classes to protest.
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iTNdmYl.png
hsu on
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Posts

  • _J__J_ Pedant Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    hsu wrote: »
    So it's day 2 of Occupy Hong Kong, which is really a misnomer, as unlike similarly named protests, this one has a solid purpose: universal suffrage for the 2017 elections.

    Gave snaps for that line. Well done, sir.

    MrVyngaardLoren MichaelElvenshaespacekungfumanSkeithPolaritieShadowfireSmrtnikHacksawEdith Upwards
  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    In Hangzhou, nobody seems to be particularly concerned in this Starbucks at least.

    This is one of those instances where it's really crystal clear how eerily ignorant a lot of Chinese people are; even my friends who are fluent in English don't often actually consume English-language news media, which in many cases doesn't require a VPN for access, which means they're about as clueless on this as they are in regards to other famous Chinese protests.

    2ezikn6.jpg
  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    In Hangzhou, nobody seems to be particularly concerned in this Starbucks at least.

    This is one of those instances where it's really crystal clear how eerily ignorant a lot of Chinese people are; even my friends who are fluent in English don't often actually consume English-language news media, which in many cases doesn't require a VPN for access, which means they're about as clueless on this as they are in regards to other famous Chinese protests.

    I have heard that the institutional forced ignorance on the issue has got to the point where some censors have let historical pictures through, because they had no idea what the context of the picture was. Crazy stuff.

    torchlight-sig-80.jpg
  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    I've basically learned to accept the TS ignorance, I get it. Same with the anti-Japanese stuff, which is comically dumb. But this ongoing unawareness of current events is creepy. I kind of imagine it's like living in Russia and just getting the Russia Today perspective about the plane that was shot down.

    2ezikn6.jpg
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    Every country has a strong vein of ignorance so I guess if one manages to focus that then censorship is so much easier.
    Anyway so if the CE resigns, that ends it?
    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/30/hong-kong-leung-chun-ying-calls-protests-end-resisting-calls-quit

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  • hsuhsu Registered User regular
    edited September 2014
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-29423147
    From the above BBC article, things that could only happen in a Hong Kong protest. Among them...
    _77913872_bcf034a7-bd91-4cc4-bdc4-e622819b45bf.jpg
    Doing your homework. Yep, in the middle of a protest, even though they are all skipping school.
    _77915519_024131320-1.jpg
    All the barricades have apology signs. You'll see a few protest signs followed by polite signs apologizing for the inconvenience.
    _77913869_024131193-1.jpg
    Protestors picking up all the trash that accumulates every day. It's like Burning Man, pack in, pack out.

    hsu on
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  • hsuhsu Registered User regular
    Just another photo that you'd never see at any other protest, besides Hong Kong.
    A cop washing tear gas out of a protestor's eyes.
    10422500_568550646606918_4957797365420421167_n.jpg?oh=02fa8c9a8b70d89bfbf5d79ebdda5c4b&oe=54BF30AB&__gda__=1421842587_ea4ae55612397dffedefd308a724451d

    iTNdmYl.png
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  • CauldCauld Registered User regular
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    In Hangzhou, nobody seems to be particularly concerned in this Starbucks at least.

    This is one of those instances where it's really crystal clear how eerily ignorant a lot of Chinese people are; even my friends who are fluent in English don't often actually consume English-language news media, which in many cases doesn't require a VPN for access, which means they're about as clueless on this as they are in regards to other famous Chinese protests.

    I have heard that the institutional forced ignorance on the issue has got to the point where some censors have let historical pictures through, because they had no idea what the context of the picture was. Crazy stuff.

    When I asked my Chinese wife about her feelings earlier she was pretty indifferent. I think part of it is a general distrust/disinterest in politics. She also kind of resents the fact that most people in Hong Kong refer to themselves "Hong Konger" and not "Chinese".

  • override367override367 ALL minions Registered User regular
    edited October 2014
    Most of the population of HK was alive when it wasn't part of China tho

    override367 on
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  • KadokenKadoken Wap it out Registered User regular
    hsu wrote: »
    Just another photo that you'd never see at any other protest, besides Hong Kong.
    A cop washing tear gas out of a protestor's eyes.
    10422500_568550646606918_4957797365420421167_n.jpg?oh=02fa8c9a8b70d89bfbf5d79ebdda5c4b&oe=54BF30AB&__gda__=1421842587_ea4ae55612397dffedefd308a724451d

    Wow. Why haven't we given all of Canada's "Socially polite freak" stereotypes to Hong Kong?

  • Knuckle DraggerKnuckle Dragger Explosive Ovine Disposal Registered User regular
    Kadoken wrote: »
    hsu wrote: »
    Just another photo that you'd never see at any other protest, besides Hong Kong.
    A cop washing tear gas out of a protestor's eyes.
    10422500_568550646606918_4957797365420421167_n.jpg?oh=02fa8c9a8b70d89bfbf5d79ebdda5c4b&oe=54BF30AB&__gda__=1421842587_ea4ae55612397dffedefd308a724451d

    Wow. Why haven't we given all of Canada's "Socially polite freak" stereotypes to Hong Kong?

    Regrettable Decease Without Undue Suffering To The Forces Of Oppression!

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  • Rhesus PositiveRhesus Positive GNU Terry Pratchett Registered User regular
    Kadoken wrote: »
    hsu wrote: »
    Just another photo that you'd never see at any other protest, besides Hong Kong.
    A cop washing tear gas out of a protestor's eyes.
    10422500_568550646606918_4957797365420421167_n.jpg?oh=02fa8c9a8b70d89bfbf5d79ebdda5c4b&oe=54BF30AB&__gda__=1421842587_ea4ae55612397dffedefd308a724451d

    Wow. Why haven't we given all of Canada's "Socially polite freak" stereotypes to Hong Kong?

    Regrettable Decease Without Undue Suffering To The Forces Of Oppression!

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  • King RiptorKing Riptor Registered User regular
    Cauld wrote: »
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    In Hangzhou, nobody seems to be particularly concerned in this Starbucks at least.

    This is one of those instances where it's really crystal clear how eerily ignorant a lot of Chinese people are; even my friends who are fluent in English don't often actually consume English-language news media, which in many cases doesn't require a VPN for access, which means they're about as clueless on this as they are in regards to other famous Chinese protests.

    I have heard that the institutional forced ignorance on the issue has got to the point where some censors have let historical pictures through, because they had no idea what the context of the picture was. Crazy stuff.

    When I asked my Chinese wife about her feelings earlier she was pretty indifferent. I think part of it is a general distrust/disinterest in politics. She also kind of resents the fact that most people in Hong Kong refer to themselves "Hong Konger" and not "Chinese".

    They arent Chinese in terms of national loyalty,or culturally so why would they identify as such?

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  • Rhan9Rhan9 Registered User regular
    edited October 2014
    Well, China kind of loves insisting that plenty of people/cultures/lands are in fact Chinese, even if the people in question don't share that opinion.

    Rhan9 on
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  • PolaritiePolaritie Oh I didn't see this box. Registered User regular
    They're deluded and just refuse to admit that China is actually part of Mongolia.

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  • CauldCauld Registered User regular
    Cauld wrote: »
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    In Hangzhou, nobody seems to be particularly concerned in this Starbucks at least.

    This is one of those instances where it's really crystal clear how eerily ignorant a lot of Chinese people are; even my friends who are fluent in English don't often actually consume English-language news media, which in many cases doesn't require a VPN for access, which means they're about as clueless on this as they are in regards to other famous Chinese protests.

    I have heard that the institutional forced ignorance on the issue has got to the point where some censors have let historical pictures through, because they had no idea what the context of the picture was. Crazy stuff.

    When I asked my Chinese wife about her feelings earlier she was pretty indifferent. I think part of it is a general distrust/disinterest in politics. She also kind of resents the fact that most people in Hong Kong refer to themselves "Hong Konger" and not "Chinese".

    They arent Chinese in terms of national loyalty,or culturally so why would they identify as such?

    What country are Hong Kongers loyal to? Hong Kong isn't a country anymore

    I agree with your sentiment and I understand why someone from Hong Kong would want to differentiate themselves from people from the mainland, but I don't think making that distinction is really helping their cause. Isn't 1 country 2 systems presupposed on the fact that there's 1 country?

    Also, I was under the impression that most Hong Kongers are Han, the same ethnicity as most mainlanders (not that this really means anything). I know this isn't a perfect comparison, but when someone asks me where I'm from I say New York to differentiate from all the various regions in the US. I wouldn't claim that I'm not American despite our many different cultures, languages, or ethnicities.

    I guess being american I'm used to hearing a term like Chinese in the ethnic sense rather than the nationality sense. If I meet someone and they say they're Polish I would likely conclude that their grandparents were from Poland, unless I could tell that English wasn't their first language. So maybe this is only strange to me.

    UrQuanLord88
  • InvisibleInvisible Registered User regular
    edited October 2014
    I think it's a bit more complicated than that. With Hong Kong's history and culture, it's not surprising they wouldn't consider themselves Chinese. They only went back to Chinese control in 1997.

    Pretty terrible what's going on. I really wonder how it will be resolved. I can't see China actually backing down, not with the possibility of it emboldening other protests.

    Invisible on
  • FeralFeral That's what I do. I drink, and I know things. Location: ByakkoyaRegistered User regular
    They're only allowed to vote for a short list of candidates vetted and approved by the ruling establishment?

    How terrible. Thank god that could never happen here.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
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  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    Feral wrote: »
    They're only allowed to vote for a short list of candidates vetted and approved by the ruling establishment?

    How terrible. Thank god that could never happen here.

    It is kinda hilarious how shit China is at political corruption when they need it. They just don't put any effort into it, and so they get shit like this.

    torchlight-sig-80.jpg
  • Alistair HuttonAlistair Hutton Dr EdinburghRegistered User regular
    Cauld wrote: »
    Cauld wrote: »
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    In Hangzhou, nobody seems to be particularly concerned in this Starbucks at least.

    This is one of those instances where it's really crystal clear how eerily ignorant a lot of Chinese people are; even my friends who are fluent in English don't often actually consume English-language news media, which in many cases doesn't require a VPN for access, which means they're about as clueless on this as they are in regards to other famous Chinese protests.

    I have heard that the institutional forced ignorance on the issue has got to the point where some censors have let historical pictures through, because they had no idea what the context of the picture was. Crazy stuff.

    When I asked my Chinese wife about her feelings earlier she was pretty indifferent. I think part of it is a general distrust/disinterest in politics. She also kind of resents the fact that most people in Hong Kong refer to themselves "Hong Konger" and not "Chinese".

    They arent Chinese in terms of national loyalty,or culturally so why would they identify as such?

    What country are Hong Kongers loyal to? Hong Kong isn't a country anymore

    I agree with your sentiment and I understand why someone from Hong Kong would want to differentiate themselves from people from the mainland, but I don't think making that distinction is really helping their cause. Isn't 1 country 2 systems presupposed on the fact that there's 1 country?

    Also, I was under the impression that most Hong Kongers are Han, the same ethnicity as most mainlanders (not that this really means anything). I know this isn't a perfect comparison, but when someone asks me where I'm from I say New York to differentiate from all the various regions in the US. I wouldn't claim that I'm not American despite our many different cultures, languages, or ethnicities.

    I guess being american I'm used to hearing a term like Chinese in the ethnic sense rather than the nationality sense. If I meet someone and they say they're Polish I would likely conclude that their grandparents were from Poland, unless I could tell that English wasn't their first language. So maybe this is only strange to me.


    I'm no expert on Hong Kong identity but imagine if New York hadn't bee part of America for 155 years before it was taken over by the USA in 1997, also imagine there was massed protests against the USA taking over New York and that 8 years prior to the takeover the USA was a dictatorship that had brutally cracked down and suppressed peaceful protesters in Washington National Mall. Then add in that New Yorkers speak and writes a different language for the majority of mainland USA.

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  • QuidQuid I don't... what... hnnng Registered User regular
    Y'all, the vast, vast majority of Hong Kong citizens identify as Chinese culturally, ethnically, and/or racially.

    A sizable portion also identify as Hong Kongers much in the same way as America has people who strongly identify as Texan or New Yorker.

    Only about a quarter of people there identify (or would like to identify) as Hong Konger as a separate nationality.

    UrQuanLord88TaranisCptKemzik
  • Jealous DevaJealous Deva Registered User regular
    There's a difference here between old world and new world mentalities in nationality and ethnicity.

    In the new world nationality is viewed as based on geographic and political boundries for the most part. No one would really think it odd if the South had seceded had they stopped calling themselves Americans, or thought it odd that Texans went from being Texans first to Americans first when they joined the union.

    Old world nationalities are tribal, if the Hong Kongers stop referring to themselves as Chinese, essentially that means they are divorcing themselves from the Chinese people, not just the political government, and essentially repudiating any future claims to hong kong being part of a united China.

    A modern example would be Austria after WW2. Austria had been politically seperate from Germany for hundreds of years, but it was only after ww2 that they started referring to themselves as Austrians as a distinct nationality, rather than just another country of Germans.

  • TL DRTL DR Not at all confident in his reflexive opinions of thingsRegistered User regular
    _J_ wrote: »
    hsu wrote: »
    So it's day 2 of Occupy Hong Kong, which is really a misnomer, as unlike similarly named protests, this one has a solid purpose: universal suffrage for the 2017 elections.

    Gave snaps for that line. Well done, sir.

    This was neither true nor clever during the height of the national Occupy protests and it's even more disappointing to hear it parroted still.

    FeralPhillishereLoveIsUnitySmrtnikAndy Joechrishallett83
  • UrQuanLord88UrQuanLord88 Registered User regular
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    Feral wrote: »
    They're only allowed to vote for a short list of candidates vetted and approved by the ruling establishment?

    How terrible. Thank god that could never happen here.

    It is kinda hilarious how shit China is at political corruption when they need it. They just don't put any effort into it, and so they get shit like this.

    Political corruption? I'm pretty sure thats how China gets its leaders as well

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  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    edited October 2014
    TL DR wrote: »
    _J_ wrote: »
    hsu wrote: »
    So it's day 2 of Occupy Hong Kong, which is really a misnomer, as unlike similarly named protests, this one has a solid purpose: universal suffrage for the 2017 elections.

    Gave snaps for that line. Well done, sir.

    This was neither true nor clever during the height of the national Occupy protests and it's even more disappointing to hear it parroted still.

    Oh yes, because demanding political change while refusing to take part in any aspect of the political process at all just screams effectiveness. The opportunity that Occupy wasted pisses me off so much.

    Fencingsax on
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  • hsuhsu Registered User regular
    edited October 2014
    I did not want to use the word occupy at all in the title, but the Hong Kong protestors seem to be using Occupy Central to describe their movement, even though their movement has nothing whatsoever to do with the original occupy movement.

    For one thing, universal suffrage has drawn out, easily, five times more Hong Kong protestors than even the largest NYC occupy protests

    I'll change the title of the thread to the alternate name I've seen floating around: the umbrella revolution.
    9a99f8bb-fccc-47cb-8ad6-428d057acf94_170x255.jpg A live feed to the protests in Hong Kong
    _77942286_77942285.jpg

    hsu on
    iTNdmYl.png
  • WotanAnubisWotanAnubis Registered User regular
    Crackdowns? I'm not surprised Bejing is tone deaf when it comes to elections, but shouldn't the Hong Kong police be worried that this sort of thing might lead to actual riots?

  • override367override367 ALL minions Registered User regular
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    Feral wrote: »
    They're only allowed to vote for a short list of candidates vetted and approved by the ruling establishment?

    How terrible. Thank god that could never happen here.

    It is kinda hilarious how shit China is at political corruption when they need it. They just don't put any effort into it, and so they get shit like this.

    Political corruption? I'm pretty sure thats how China gets its leaders as well

    yes but they have total control in China proper

    there's no need to exercise subterfuge

  • HacksawHacksaw J. Duggan Wrestler at LawRegistered User regular
    I thought this thread was about a new, unannounced Resident Evil game. Color me disappointed.

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  • SamSam Registered User regular
    edited November 2014
    i thought i'd bump this thread to offer my perspective (i'm from hk)

    re: is Hong Kong China/do HK people consider themselves Chinese/do they want independence

    Hong Kong, The People's Republic of China and Taiwan are all China but not China at the same time. unfortunately, nationalism is a subjective idea and isn't always clear cut.

    the weird thing about Hong Kong is that unlike Taiwan, it was entirely created by the British, and never had any significance in China because it was nothing more than an isolated fishing village. the Hong Kong that was built by the British was subsequently populated by migrants and refugees from the mainland over the years. most of these people escaped Soviet/Nazi level atrocities by a government that allowed its people to suffer the biggest famine in history and attempted to wipe out its own cultural heritage. therefore, most of Hong Kong's older generation considers it a place like America, where they moved to escape persecution and poverty in the old country.

    that being said, there isn't any intention to deny connection to the mainland. in fact, in Cantonese the expression people use to refer to traveling to the mainland is "return to mainland". essentially, the perception is that China is still divided by the cleavages of the civil war and the CCP's reign of terror, and what people want is both reform and reunification, because these cannot occur without each other. so rather than denying the fact that they are Chinese, people reject the idea that being Chinese means submitting to an oligarchically prescribed monoculture that is different than those in most normal developed societies. this is a difference that mainland Chinese (both the government and the people) are simply unwilling to acknowledge and is the source of the widespread implication that Hong Kong people "don't consider themselves Chinese".

    reform in the mainland is different than the objective of preserving Hong Kong's existing political freedoms and institutions, because Hong Kong people do not want to be held responsible for the challenges of administering China, which is a chaotic place that would respond differently to an immediately democratized government than a comparatively educated and advanced society like Hong Kong.

    to this extent, the CCP is on the same page- it views Hong Kong as a testing ground for its version of gradual reform in the mainland, hoping to completely merge the territories by 2047 under one singular system. the problem is that the CCP is losing patience and has decided to begin the process of merging the systems despite its original intention to wait until society in the mainland had adjusted and developed during a period of stability and prosperity which it lacked since 1949.

    i think this is the main reason that the fuse actually lit in Hong Kong. although nobody was expecting democracy, the expectation was that China would allow for a period of organic political development in Hong Kong, which would provide a blueprint for more representational government in the future. China, however, has demonstrated it wants to start with the defined end first, which disappointingly has turned out to be nothing more than a way to anoint and appoint cadres while calling it reform.

    I strongly feel that people still wouldn't have cared that much if it weren't for the fact that existing civil and economic liberties were being trampled on. a Hong Kong entrepreneur was denied a license to start a broadcast TV network despite meeting all the requirements and being able to pay all costs and fees. this was perceived as the state seizing control of the media overnight, which nobody really expected. efforts to eradicate the local language and teach propaganda in schools certainly fanned the flames among the more politically inclined, but i think it was the realization that entrepreneurship and any kind of true market was dying that pissed enough people off for it to get to the point that it did- the property sector has been aggressively building luxury projects in what remains of Hong Kong's inhabitable land, while existing real estate is hyper inflated to the point where the majority of people will never own a home. therefore, in the absence of a future worth working for, people are determined to realize one worth fighting for.

    genuine democracy is not even a remote possibility. however, genuine regional autonomy and the dismantlement of entrenched government-tycoon cartels that drain the lifeblood of this society would almost certainly end the protests.

    Sam on
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  • TroggTrogg Registered User regular
    edited November 2014
    I think that the PRC will have a revolution sometime in the next ten or twenty years.

    If you look at the people who stand to gain from the PRC remaining as it is- an oligarchy ruled by the descendants of revolutionaries- and the people who stand to gain from it turning into a Japan/South Korea style semi-democratic "free" society, the writing is on the wall. Even the CCP princelings and oligarchs have no attachment to the CCP dictatorship: they can accept a freer China as long as they keep their cash.

    There will be a situation in the future- perhaps a village protest over land, or some outrage over a CCP son raping and murdering a young woman- where the security apparatus is called upon, and the old excuses are invoked "you're either with us or against us", "we have to defend ourselves against foreign intervention" and the security apparatus simply stands aside.

    The idea that the CCP dictatorship is necessary in order to defend China against foreign threat has been absurd for many years now and becomes more absurd with every passing day. When China overtakes the USA as the dominant world economic/military power in the next decade, this jingoist rhetoric will collapse completely.

    When the CCP ends, it will do so with a whimper. The people of China will realise that a single party system doesn't serve their interests and the CCP will fold like the KMT did in Taiwan. There are simply too few people who benefit from a continuation of the status quo and too many who gain from change for the current state to continue.

    Edit- I don't believe that the CCP and its security apparatus has another Tiananmen massacre in it. If a confrontation like that occurs again, the CCP will fold. That is my prediction.

    Trogg on
  • SamSam Registered User regular
    edited November 2014
    I don't believe that the CCP and its security apparatus has another Tiananmen massacre in it.

    it hasn't needed to do that. there are often protests in China, which mostly don't get much coverage outside of there. Things like farmers protesting over exploitative land laws that let property developers acquire their property and livelihood on non negotiable terms, the kind of things that give apathetic people a deeply personal reason to revolt. they don't send the army, they deploy squads from a paramilitary organization called the People's Armed Police, which was created specifically to deal with protests. they beat the shit out of protestors, and shoot them if they get violent. this, combined with the prospect of a guaranteed ticket to a secret prison for people that the government can associate with protest movements, makes it unnecessary to deploy the army against civilians anymore. so basically, what you're referring to already happens- the just nip movements in the bud and take a more proactive stance towards cracking skulls (literally) than they did with Tianenman, which the leadership was unprepared for.

    in that sense, mainland Chinese people's attitude that the Hong Kong protestors are "privileged" is understandable. the HK government's response is still definitely kid gloves compared to how protests in China get handled.

    I also somewhat disagree about the oligarchs standing to benefit from democratic reform. the senior levels of government confer control over all the country's resources and on select families, (all of whom are also part of the highest echelons of government) with the wealth and authority arranged to be passed on hereditarily. this, along with the inevitable corruption charges and scrutiny over personal finances that pretty much every member of the government would face were they suddenly held accountable to the public, gives them every incentive to preserve their system- which is before considering the aspect of human nature's obsession with power and ambition, especially when it's a superpower at stake, not some small country that's insignificant on the global stage.

    beyond that, the population is so thoroughly brainwashed that the average person would consider any attempt to challenge the government's absolute authority to be a plot by the CIA, which is indeed how many mainland Chinese (and pro CCP diaspora) continue view both the '89 Tianenman protest and the current Umbrella Revolution in Hong Kong.

    even among those capable of critical thinking that recognize the overused foreign-boogeyman rhetoric, the inclination is mostly towards preserving the status quo, which gives people all kinds of opportunities to get rich that they didn't have before, which to them is a lot more desirable than an unknown quantity like regime change. this is coupled with the strong sense of ethnic nationalism that pervades China's society, where people are raised to resent and/or distrust Europe, Japan, America and Russia to varying degrees, and look down on people from poorer/nonwestern countries. imo the only hope for China is the development of its collective consciousness, which is difficult considering the degree to which its average people are inculcated through every aspect of their existence, from their language to their education, media, and general social isolation from the outside world that continues despite engagements with commerce, consumerism and tourism.

    the way it is now, even if the average person were able to access outside info, which they are to a large extent, they wouldn't be able to read English, and some would be incapable of even understanding Taiwan/Hong Kong/Diaspora publications because they're in traditional Chinese, not simplified standardized Mandarin. being exposed to a prescribed narrative to the complete exclusion of all others tends to prejudice people's mindset when they do encounter alien concepts, and an education system that discourages independent thought compounds the issue.

    I'd like to share your optimism, but i'd be more convinced if people in existing democratic societies were able to stop voting against their interests en masse when they don't have a gun to their head. i'm already cringing at the thought of Hilary's imminent mating dance, and the inevitable misogyny fueled backlash from the GOP.


    Sam on
  • a5ehrena5ehren AtlantaRegistered User regular
    Yeah, I was gonna say - I think Uighurs in the steppes would disagree with the "no more massacres" sentiment. I don't know what would happen if there is a major Han protest, but they're still pretty effective at suppressing protests by ethnic minorities.

  • Edith UpwardsEdith Upwards Registered User regular
    Bullies and thugs believe they have a right to crush others. Just look at the Republican party or any other group that could have taken it's winnings and left, but stayed to fight on 'til the bitter end.

  • hsuhsu Registered User regular
    I'm visiting Hong Kong, so of course I have to photograph the Umbrella Movement myself.
    The first thing I noticed is just how large the Umbrella Movement really is.
    I estimate that it's easily 10 times larger that Occupy Wall street.
    And it's so much cleaner, so much better organized than any other protest that's happened in my lifetime.
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