October 28, 2005

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York Chow Yat-ngok, Hong Kong's health minister, was simply following the mainland's lead when he declared that Hong Kong might shut its borders if there were any hints of human-to-human transmission of bird flu. Obviously The Don spat his cereal at whatever fancy hotel he's staying at in Washington when he heard that, judging from today's SCMP report:

The government is set to backpedal on the pledge by health minister York Chow Yat-ngok that the borders will be sealed if a bird flu pandemic knocks on the door of Hong Kong. This follows what a government source said last night was local and international concern about the enormous social and economic effects of such a move.

It also follows a denial by the Ministry of Health of a statement by Vice-Minister of Health Huang Jiefu , who said earlier China would seal its borders if there was even one case of human-to-human transmission of bird flu...

The Hong Kong government source told the South China Morning Post that instead of sealing the borders completely, officials were now thinking about various "border controls" to stop an outbreak. "We need to tone down this matter a bit. The whole government needs a more thorough discussion on this topic because it is a very complicated issue," the source said.

Apparently a possible widespread pandemic isn't a big enough social and economic consequence on its own. "Local and international concern"? That'd be one hotel room in America's capital and Upper Albert Road.

Reading between the lines can be far more interesting than reading the lines.

And so to the first Bird Flu Caption Contest. Below the jump is the photo the SCMP used to accompany the border closing that wasn't story. Random prizes for the best entries.

A dead bird lies in a field in Wantang village.


posted by Simon on 10.28.05 at 10:52 AM in the Hong Kong category.


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Closed caption
Excerpt: Simon is having a caption contest. Go ahead, don't be chicken.
Weblog: Flying Chair
Tracked: October 28, 2005 01:11 PM


My effort:

"China's health ministry finds a new mascot".

posted by: Simon on 10.28.05 at 11:00 AM [permalink]

''Neither bird flu, nor death, will destroy the Chinese Communist Party. Vive La Revolucion!''

posted by: doug on 10.28.05 at 11:51 AM [permalink]

One Flu Over the Cuckoo's Nest?

posted by: David on 10.28.05 at 12:04 PM [permalink]

"Mmmm... Dinner..."

posted by: Derek Scruggs on 10.28.05 at 12:07 PM [permalink]

Plucking Ada! Somebody's feathered their nest!

posted by: anon on 10.28.05 at 01:01 PM [permalink]

Spring onion and ginger 5 Yuan extra.

posted by: Phil on 10.28.05 at 01:06 PM [permalink]

My favorite line from a local Chinese columnist (forgot the name) years ago,

"below the upper albert road, and above the lower albert road"

in chinese, below/lower share the same chinese character, so is upper/above.

posted by: sun bin on 10.28.05 at 03:03 PM [permalink]

I have to say, some great efforts. David's the winner. Your prize: a sick bird.

posted by: Simon on 10.31.05 at 09:30 AM [permalink]

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