More cash approved for activist stirrers

Central Station | Nury Vittachi 4 Jan 2021

Here comes cash - and danger. American politicians last week passed a bill to give "at least US$3 million" (about HK$23 million) to anti-government protesters in Hong Kong for use in the year ahead.

The move confirms what well-informed readers of The Standard have said repeatedly, which is that the US spends millions of dollars blatantly interfering in Hong Kong politics, while Western media looks the other way or declares such claims false.

"The disbursement to protesters was tucked into the back of a bill that was 5,600 pages long," said our source, showing us a copy of the page.

"I guarantee no international media will cover this."

So far, he's bang on target.

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A junior doctor from Hong Kong has become popular in the UK for his warnings on the pandemic. Medical YouTuber Matthew Lee worked a late shift at an emergency department in a London hospital and then stepped outside - and was shocked at what he saw: "Hundreds of maskless, drunk people in huge groups shouting 'Covid is a hoax,' literally outside the building where hundreds are sick and dying." His video was shared by more than 50,000 people.

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This UK sign saying "Covid-19 testing in the rear" is just telling people to drive around the back of the clinic, although some people have interpreted it differently. It occurs to me that we should be thankful that the old rectal thermometers are not much used these days, or nobody would enter shops or restaurants.

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Reader SC Yeung yesterday shared a statement by Donald Trump's ferociously anti-China lieutenant Mike Pompeo, in which the former head of the CIA said: "We're reading every morning new headlines of repression in Hong Kong and in Xinjiang."

Giving the mainstream media's one-sided coverage of those two places, SC had a question.

"Reading?" he asked. "Surely the correct word is 'writing'?"

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Hong Kong's correctional services department marked its 100th birthday last week by making five pop music videos featuring songs written and sung by prison guards. Sounds like a horrible idea, but they used professional producers and filmmakers so the results are actually quite good. There even made karaoke versions, but I suspect Jimmy Lai won't be lending his voice to the project.

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On Friday, Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen's new law putting American pork into shops and restaurants came into force - but citizens quickly passed local meat-labeling rules to avoid eating the meat, banned in most countries because it contains a chemical called ractopamine. The fact that Tsai is so obviously more pro-American than pro-Taiwanese is a growing problem for many people.

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"The Hong Kong 12 had no bail," tweeted US official Mike Pompeo on Friday, as if this was the most evil thing in the world. But bail-jumpers in America also don't get bail. In fact, bail-jumpers EVERYWHERE don't get bail.

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What a year. I usually go to bed early on New Year's Eve, but this year it was worth staying up to watch 2020 die die DIE.

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But in January, there's one good thing about the pandemic: you can make a New Year resolution to go to the gym four hours a day, and then say: "Oh? So they're all closed? What a pity, I'll have to spend the time sitting on the sofa eating cookies instead."

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