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  • Oct 2, 2014
  • Updated: 10:41pm
My Take
PUBLISHED : Monday, 08 April, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 08 April, 2013, 2:04am

Young should take real risks before fighting for democracy

You know why we are always rounding on our government? It's not just because it's undemocratic. Are we unfree and oppressed? Actually, we are freer and richer than most full democracies.

What we don't admit is that we have come to rely too much on the government and expect it to fix every problem for us, right now! That's the sense of entitlement and instant gratification of the iPhone-pan-democrat generation. Parallel traders blocking MTR traffic? It's the government's fault. The economy taking a dive? Also its fault. No milk powder? The government's fault. Flats too expensive … Everything is the stupid government's responsibility and therefore it can never do anything right. The more activist a government, the less likely it will get many things right.

This, by the way, is why many people have this terribly mistaken notion that the colonial Brits were superior governors. I lived at least 25 years of my life under their rule and I can tell you they weren't all that competent. They were, however, far less responsive to popular demands. When your subjects had low expectations of you, it was easy to meet them.

Native entrepreneurship was what made Hong Kong great. Its disappearance will spell the city's decline. Because you couldn't rely on the Brits to take care of you, you had to take care of yourself. That was how Hong Kong got rich - entrepreneurship - thanks to enterprising Chinese, Indian, Pakistani and other risk-takers.

Today, the word entrepreneurship is conspicuously absent in public discourse. In its place, democracy has taken hold. Yet I don't know any truly freer person than an entrepreneur, who is in control of her own destiny.

Instead of starting a business in a burst of entrepreneurial creativity à la Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg, many young people either want to join big corporations or the government on a fast track to senior management - and/or protest for democracy. What they all have in common is that they take no risk. Our young democracy fighters may fantasise about June 4, but no PLA tanks will ever run over them.

Young man and woman, take real risks! Travel the world, read widely, strike out on your own, start a business (in another city with low rents). Then come back and fight for democracy.

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hard times !
Even in current History subject of our secondary school which in its form one syllabus concerning the topic:ancient Greek and Roman civilizations,it is clearly stated that in the ancient Greek state:Athens,there is 'one man,one vote' system for its people to choose their government officials. And all male citizens aged 20 or above enjoy the right to vote and to be elected.Athens is regarded and honoured to be the birthplace of western democracy which now western countries practise and most countries in the world follow suit except some autocratic countries led by the PRC and N.Korea and Cuba plus...a small bunch of others as well. This so-called 'whymak' (who claimed to have taught for a short period but I doubt that he is actually a hired writer:so-called fifty-cent gang member ) is a shame of local teachers/lecturers since he/she hasn't the knowledge of world history at form one level. He/She better go and get one textbook for reference before yelling meaninlessly here plus wrongly and impolitely accusing other Comment writer for his/her posting ! Okay ?
hard times !
According to history record, as early as 2000 years ago, in the Greek state, Athens, their leaders were elected through 'one man, one vote'. Every male citizen aged 20 or above got the right to vote for the posts in their government. The Athens state was ruled by people instead of a king (as in another state, Sparta).Athens is called and honoured as the birthplace of western democracy which is regarded as a universal value-----government by the people,of the people and for the people. Only when a government is elected by her people will it be responsible to them and their needs and demands.Once the leaders elected are found to be either corrupted (as Taiwan's Chen Shui-bien ) or incapable (as Taiwan's President Ma), the people can demand him/her to step down by votes instead of a bloody revolution or revolts. Democratic political system is by far the best political system in the world---that explains why more and more countries in the world are now practising democracy except Cuba,N.Korea, Iran and of course the PRC which is just a replica of the Qing Dynasty---the winner of the war,the ruler.Qing Dynasty was just replaced by the Party Dynasty.
whymak
I never had one single verbally abusive college student in my brief teaching career, not even from those receiving failing grades.
I gave a solid example, which one reader didn’t appreciate, that with use of logic and reason, one could accomplish wonderful things. One could teach Form 2 students without attention deficit disorder to program computers and networks - an infinitely easier task than teaching English.
Just imagine with only 3 logic constructs in simple language syntax, one could design instructions from as simple as turning on/off automatically a thermostat to as complicated as finding the best valued bottle of wine within a mile radius for tonight's dinner.
With diligence and patience, children can learn this skill well enough to make a decent living. If they are creative and willing to take the risk of being unemployed, they have a shot at becoming Gates or Zuckerberg.
Hong Kong morons encourage kids to tackle ideology instead of useful skills.
If “democracy” is decomposed into its logical elements, their quadrillion combinations will overwhelm any intellect. Imbeciles take the easy way out by accepting a single dogma – universal suffrage.
hard times !
travel widely, read more, start a business elsewhere then come back to fight for democracy which sounds that it is the most practical way to gain our promised universal suffrage.**** indeed ! I dare say.Obviously,this Alex Lo is not for democracy himself.I wonder if he has travelled widely in the past 41 years(including 25 years under the not-so-competent British colonists whose subjects never demanded much but appeared gentle and obedient) and whether he has read widely himself including books on democracy in ancient Greek state:Athens( which is over 2000 years ago !) Starting a business elsewhere and practise entrepreneurship before coming back to ask for democracy.If Alex Lo himself has experienced all the above stages,why doesn't he strive for democracy together with our ideal and democratic-minded youngsters now and here in Hong Kong,may I ask ? Alex Lo's ideas of democracy sounds more or less like that old guy in town:Lau Nai-keung who keeps on barking at local democrats in both Chinese newspapers and SCMP as well !
wwong888
also, since the govn't controls land supply, sadly we do need to rely on them to address housing prices. how should the govn't not be involved in resolving the supply-demand imbalance? alex, you just drivel nonsense. go back on holiday and never come back.
SpeakFreely
"Instead of starting a business in a burst of entrepreneurial creativity à la Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg, many young people either want to join big corporations or the government on a fast track to senior management - and/or protest for democracy. What they all have in common is that they take no risk. "Alex, Hk history had taught people that low tech, such as property development, is the best money maker. Hk top 10 or 100 richest are all property related, i thjnk. In US, none of the rich are from property, almost. Even in Silicon Valley, property are considered expensive but not at speculative level as money are diverted to innovation. vC invested almost the same amount we IPo in Hk into siclicon valley yearly to create new venturs. In HK there is almost zero money coming from VC invested in local startups.
sudouest
I feel like the society is separated into the teacher group and the student group. The former having experience, the latter having ideals.
I totally agree with Alex Lo thoughts. In fact, try and go out to the world and set up your industry, and when you have your knowledge and experience, come back and talk in a TED talk or something.
And to add to this: 'whymak' has much more knowledge than any of us. Open up your mind dude.

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