Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Int'l Standard in Freedom and Democracy

Occupy Central protesters demand freedom and Democracy (In case you haven’t noticed, I habitually capitalise Democracy due to it’s sacred status) according to “international standard”. I believe the freedom bit should be easily achievable. Hong Kong has been one of the freest cities in the world in many respects: economic, personal movement, expression etc. etc.; a downward adjustment to meet international standard shouldn’t be too challenging. 

The protestors and their mentors also tell us that candidates for the Chief Executive should be nominated by the public, and voted on directly without any form of screening whatsoever. Otherwise, it’d be a sham! Now, this could be more problematic according to “international standard”. 

I’ve stupidly consulted the facts. (I know I know. Annoying isn’t it?) Direct election of the head of state is an exception, not the norm, in Western Democracies. The British Prime Minister, for example, is one of many Western leaders not chosen by direct election. Neither is the American president mandated by popular votes. Sham? I fully agree; but that’s the standard. Furthermore, they’ve all been through multiple-level small circle party-screening, and verbally patriotic, requirements that the protesters vehemently object. Ah, wait! The British PM and American President are not Chinese, so, not comparable. Different international standards, as usual.

But when it comes to Civic Nomination, duh, my quick research has failed to yield even ONE pronounceable country which follows this “international standard”, definitely not in practice anyways. Not even referenda burdened Switzerland, or the Philippines, a country governed by a neurologically spontaneous democratic spirit. Should we invent one just for the Chinese?

Just some irksome facts to feed the revolution, that’s all.

James Tam

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