Thursday saw the release of the second episode of RTHK’s ‘In Conversation’. This time it was Rachel Cartland’s turn to be interviewed, and it was well worth the wait. Pretty much agree with everything she said about Hong Kong past and present. The saddest (because truest) part was when she said:
“When I came here, it was an extraordinarily, genuinely, entrepreneurial place. There really were little people starting up and doing things completely off their own bat. But certainly now, I think we are seeing this issue that the big businessmen now are not innovative, that they are rent seekers.”
At the Lion Rock Institute, of which I am an associate scholar, we work hard to try and keep government out of people’s lives and to help maintain the entrepreneurial spirit in Hong Kong. Sadly though, Rachel Cartland is right and our task is becoming ever more difficult, whereby the rent seekers are routinely supported by the government. The small house policy is but one egregious example of the way that government disincentives genuine work and rewards rent seekers. But more on that another time.
You can watch the whole episode here: http://programme.rthk.hk/rthk/tv/programme.php?name=tv/inconversation&d=2014-05-15&p=6276&e=&m=episode