Bureaucracies tend to be monstrous abominations that force us to fill out needless paperwork in triplicate just to gain the privilege of filling out more needless paperwork in triplicate. Joy can seldom be found through bureaucracies but when two of them collide they can be very entertaining. When Snowden fled to Hong Kong the United States attempted to extradite him. The Hong Kong government had little interest in sending Snowden back so it looked over the extradition paperwork to find an error that would allow Hong Kong to reject the request. As it turns out, a minor error existed and it may be the thing that allowed Snowden to flee:
According to multiple reports, it was in large part Beijing’s decision to let Snowden leave Hong Kong. But at the very least the US middle-name mix-up provides Hong Kong with a solid diplomatic excuse.
The red tap of bureaucracy has its advantages once in a while.