Friday, January 20, 2012

Translated Version of "Unhappy Hong Kong"

In my earlier post "The Chinese Reaction to Taiwan's Election" I included a video about the election as seen from the point of view of some in Hong Kong and said I'd post a translation if one became available. The video's creators, Derrick Tao & Helene Chow, contacted me to say they've created a new translated version, so I'll share it here. The video can be found below along with their translation of the accompanying text and some additional notes they added for those who may not be familiar with some of the references. Again, I think the video is a sign of how the recent election had reverberations that extended far from Taiwan.

香港不高興 Unhappy Hong Kong from MagicHour Studio on Vimeo.

It's been said that "democracy" is a Western concept that will never work with the Chinese, who, according to folklore, are descendants of the dragon.
"The Chinese need to be controlled, as part of their nature", said a Chinese celebrity with the word "dragon" in his name. [Note (4)]

The embark of the long march to freedom and democracy may have started off in a difficult, awkward, laughable or ineffective manner.
The costs of this choice may even be an economic regression.

The rise of a super rich and powerful China has turned Hong Kong into a "wealthy second generation" kid. [Note (5)]
Chinese-style socialism seems to be telling us: democracy and economic development could only grow at the expense of each other.

"We do not want to be the next Hong Kong," says Taiwan.
This year, there was no bullet, no melodrama. The Nationalist Party nonetheless took criticisms from the opposition party all the more seriously, because the Taiwanese people have shown the world their ability to say no calmly with their votes.

Hong Kong could either join Taiwan as pioneers of freedom and democracy in the Chinese societies, or she could accept the status quo and let go of her ideals and beliefs.

Note (1): The names mentioned in the video: Peter Lam, David Li, Francis Choi, Stephen Chow, Joseph Lau and Lee Ka Shing are members of the very exclusive 1,200 election committee.
They may be banker, real estate tycoon, businessman, actor by profession. They are known to be among the wealthiest class in Hong Kong.

Note (2): The political leader in Hong Kong (the Chief Executive) is about to be elected by the exclusive 1,200 election committee. Both candidates are known to be approved by Beijing.
It is a common belief that Beijing would, via the controlled election committee mechanism, appoint the desired candidate.

Note (3): The closing remark "shall ye revive" is in response to a recent popular quote from a Hong Kong drama - "this city is dying."

Note (4): This reference is made to international actor Jacky Chan's public statement in 2009.
He also mocked the election in Taiwan in 2004 as "the biggest joke in the world".

Note (5): "wealthy second generation" (富二代)is a popular term commonly used to describe the offspring of the new super-rich government officials and entrepreneurs.
The general image of a "wealthy second generation" is arrogant, spoiled, irresponsible, takes pride in his privileges and acts in uncivilized and unsophisticated manners.

Cinematography : Derrick Tao
Text by : Derrick Tao, Helene Chow
English Translation by : Marcus Chan (Thanks Marcus you are the best!)
Edited by : Derrick Tao
Music by : Tim Mcmorris

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