On change

Written by Cliff on Monday 27 March 2017 at 10:40 pm

What does it take to change the current state of affairs? Who are the agents who try to preserve the status quo, and who are the agents who take action to implement regime change? And what of the masses who take no action? What are their motivations?

These questions can perhaps best be answered at the personal level and then extrapolated to society at large. What motivates one to change, arguably one of the most difficult and painful processes one can undergo? Ultimately, it is a burning desire for something that cannot be achieved if nothing changes; and so we undergo change in the attempt to achieve that which is desired. For example, the manager may take EQ courses in order to perform at a higher level, get bigger bonuses and be promoted. A monk may meditate and follow a master to achieve Nirvhana.

Extrapolating that idea, we begin to understand the various ‘political’ parties in Hong Kong and the people they attract. Some cater to roaring aggressive changes, some are committed to preserving the status quo while others try to strike a balance between the two.

Statistically, Hong Kong is comprised of massive social divides. The majority of the population live in government-subsidised housing, which means that the majority of Hong Kong’s total family income and assets are relatively low. There are expatriate (both mainland Chinese and non Chinese) and professional walled communities, and there are business owners and their offspring. Each have their own agendas.

The rich and powerful are committed to protecting the status quo because they used the present systems and processes to become what they are today. They wish to continue to exploit their knowledge and experience of current systems to gain further wealth and power.

The poor and destitute aggressively fight the status quo because they feel that the current state of things are developed by the elite to prevent them from becoming successful.

The middle class can sway either side depending on the extent of their exposure and knowledge (I shall refrain from using the word “Education”). The knowledgeable class want moderate change because they know that the status quo will only serve to entrench society as we know it, and social turmoil is undersirable because there is much to lose. The less knowledgeable class may either wish to preserve the status quo because they are easily manipulated by the elite classes, or they may wish aggressive regime change because they have not thought things through.

Now we have a clearer picture of what we need to do.

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