Smart Picks 29 September 2014

An upside down Chinese national flag appears next to a Hong Kong flag outside a commercial building which is in front of a main road occupied by thousands of protesters in Hong Kong, Monday, Sept. 29, 2014. Pro-democracy demonstrators defied onslaughts of tear gas and appeals from Hong Kong's top leader to go home, as the protests over Beijing's decision to limit political reforms expanded across the city early Monday.

Two systems, one country, really? 

Wall Street Journal -- Hong Kong Protests Swell as Riot Police Withdraw

Crowds Grow in Hong Kong Areas of Admiralty, Mong Kok and Causeway Bay.

What I’m listening to. Bach: Suite for Lute in G minor, (BWV 995), (Guitar Version) 


Telegraph -- Hong Kong protests: why is this happening?

The Telegraph's Malcolm Moore explains the reasons behind pro-democracy protests which have brought much of Hong Kong to a standstill.

Editor's note: “ One person, one vote … ah … one candidate.”

Student strike. 

Economist -- Hong Kong students on strike

Class struggle.

Live streaming. Thanks to Ken of Hong Kong/Tokyo.

SCMP -- OCCUPY CENTRAL - DAY TWO: Full report of the day's events

One country, two systems is a sham. 

New York Times -- Hong Kong People!

Overnight, my childhood home became a battleground.

Henry on China. 

Spiegel -- SPIEGEL Interview with Henry Kissinger: 'Mao Might Consider Modern China to Be Too Materialistic'

For decades, former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, 88, has been a keen observer of China. He spoke with SPIEGEL about his encounters with Mao Tse-tung, the future of the Chinese Communist Party and the growing rivalry between Beijing and Washington.

And without real political change, economic change doesn’t happen. 

Project Syndicate -- Xi Jinping’s Pure Party

China’s annual growth rate has recently increased from below 6% at the start of 2014 to around 7.5% in the second quarter, helped by a series of stealth stimulus measures.

Paywall down, South China Morning Post site crashes. 

mUmBrella -- South China Morning Post drops paywall for Occupy Central coverage, site crashes

Hong Kong newspaper the South China Morning Post has taken down its paywall to give Hongkongers free coverage of Occupy Central, the territory’s pro-democracy movement that gridlocked the city today, Sunday 29 September.



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Twin Virtues: Inequality of Outcomes & Equality of Opportunity©

Twin Virtues

Ultimately, the most successful societies find the balance between the twin virtues of inequality of outcomes and equality of opportunity.

The new politics must marry the twin virtues of unequal outcomes and equality of opportunity.

When too few get too much everybody loses.

Feminism is about women living their lives on their own terms, marshalling the resources of the society to make that possible, and men embracing this as vital to a successful society and their own liberation.

Can it be that striving for equality of opportunity however imperfect the process not only benefits the individual but also creates benefits for the society that are unintended but wonderful?

Economics must be a 'moral enterprise' as much as politics claims to be. Economic outcomes need to be framed in terms of right and wrong not just efficiency if only because these often align in surprising ways that are good for society and the economy.

My vision of Canada is that any Canadian child from a family of limited circumstance can expect to have a chance at lifetime of unlimited opportunities.

Free trade is a wonderful thing. Time and time again economists have proven that free trade creates enormous wealth for each country 'on the whole'. Historians have shown that free trade is usually associated with rising political, social and cultural liberty. The perennial problem is that free trade always creates tremendous disruption for thousands even millions of individuals often concentrated in one geography, and where the state is idle, not investing in best in class instruments of social justice, free trade can be a permanent ticket out of the middle class, down, not up.

Tax policy should be founded on the principle of generating steady tax revenues sufficient to maximise environmentally sustainable economic growth in order to fund fair government.

Public policy should be designed to decrease inequality before the law and increase equality of opportunity.

Capitalism is not the problem; the problem is what we do with capitalism.

Content is always more difficult to argue than conspiracy.

Let the state regulate and the market operate (most things).

Welfare strategies are best designed as a hand up, not as a hand out.

Political debate should not be fact free fighting.

Explanation lasts longer than eloquence.

Always favour empowerment over dependency.

The most enduring public figures are embraced for the causes they fought for and not the concept of themselves they hoped others would remember them by.

Find your voice and don't be the echo of somebody else.

It is possible to operate on two different levels: the practical, cautious and conservative; and the realm of ideas, open, free, and radical.