Saturday, May 31, 2008

Pictures from Namibia

To June the 1st. 给六一儿童节

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Friday, May 30, 2008

Top 10 things you want to do to uncontacted Indians

AP reports that uncontacted Amazon Indian tribe, one of the last uncontacted, is discovered in Brazil. Picture left shows them try to fire at plane with, gasp, arrows and bows. (More detailed story and larger pictures in daily mail)

Not to let David Letterman monopolize the top 10 list, let's count your top 10 things want to do the tribesman. Here's some I come up with:

  • Show them a picture of a beard man, tell them this man, Jesus, saves them, or they would go to hell. If they don't know what hell is, in all likelihood, show them a picture of Manhattan or some other places.
  • Ask them to send an athlete to Olympics to be represented. Oh, wait, they are represented by Brazil.
  • Lecture them about democracy and human rights. They don't know that, do they?
  • Give them some popcorns in exchange for them to sign some papers - about their land rights. Finger prints will suffice.
  • Drop some GPS device on them to track their activities. Wait, I'm afraid someone will actually do this. Sad.
  • Parachute yourself into their habitat, so you can claim yourself as their God.
  • Open a Macdonald next to them. Free international trade and consumerism must prevail.

Ok, I realize that's not ten yet, but feel free to add your own.

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Mirror world

Remember "don't be so CNN" was all the rage? That was not a long time ago.

CCTV, known as China Central TV in China, is under intense scrutiny recently in revelation with the earthquake coverage. Allegedly CCTV cut off camera in a news conference when questions are raised about corruption and punishment of shoddy buildings.

For British though, CCTV is commonly referring to the Close Circuit TV. maybe the British should lend China's CCTV that name, for free, to better reflect its operations.

But hold on, free press of the West shouldn't be too proud either. CNN's Yellin, in response to Scott McClellan's White House memoir, reveals that news executives actively pushed her not do hard-hitting pieces on the Bush administration.

The press corps was under enormous pressure from corporate executives, frankly, to make sure that this was a war presented in a way that was consistent with the patriotic fever in the nation and the president's high approval ratings. - Yellin

So whether in China or in the freer U.S., the intentions to control message, from power-that-be, are the same. The U.S. being a more sophisticated society, makes it less obvious.

* The CCTV camera is in Trafalgar Square, London

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Crazy English? Or Crazy education system?

To follow up my post about Chinglish, I've notice an article about Crazy English, which is providing English training for the Olympics.

Crazy English? How come I've never heard of that? Even though I've got perfect score on TOEFL back then (that's wasn't difficult, I prepared for a week), and judging by the years of its operation I should have known of.

If we don't have patience to read through the whole article, you are not missing much. The teaching approach was mainly of motivating and making students shout out loud in English and pleasing crowd with stupid banters like “One-sixth of the world’s population speaks Chinese. Why are we studying English? Because we pity them for not being able to speak Chinese!” by its Oprah-going-crazy style leader.

I remember days when we tuned in to BBC news lying in our bed after lights-out in our college days. Back then, English films and books weren't widely available in China as today. We would jam into a hall watching a tiny overhead TV to watch God Father or a room with view. We would rely on English rare visits by visiting professors and self-formed informal groups to practice speaking. We learned English just fine.

Now, English material is as readily available as ever. Yet you see gimmickry program like Crazy English, from which I'm not even sure proper English can be learned, gets more popular. It probably just shows that education market is huge in China, you are destined to get rich even if you can only manage to get a very small slice out of the state-controlled system.

Maybe it's not Crazy English, it's China's crazy education system that has failed. As for the Olympics, doesn't it take some of the foreign mystiques away if everyone in Beijing speaks good English?

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Monday, May 26, 2008

Ingenious Chinglish

just when I think China nowadays are more imitative than creative, something always comes along to prove me wrong. It turns out, the young Chinese are not only reassembling their economy and culture, they've extended their innovative ambition to the English language.

A new English word is coined by young Chinese. Drunbility, which translates into 装逼 in Chinese (dirty and offensive, be aware) urban slang, means roughly insincere, pretentious and hypocritical rolled into one. The first part of the word rhymes phonetically with the Chinese slang, and -lity is used to complete the word as a descriptive noun.

The ironically impressive part is exactly the coinage in English. Since many in China see the overdose of the use of English in everyday conversations by new elite, mixing English words in between, as one form of pretentiousness, using English to coin the word achieves to highlight just that.

Thou the divine language conqueror, I bow to thy genius-ness.
(In casual conversations, I may not be able to string together a complete sentence in Chinese without mixing some English, it's because the English words come up quicker for me, Please spare me.)

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Sunday, May 25, 2008












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Proof that religion can potentially leave you brain damaged

Move over Tom Cruise and your silly Scientology remarks.

In Cannes, Sharon Stone said of "karma" when asked about her thoughts of Si Chuan earthquake, in her heightened dramatic voice.

So Sharon, since your "good friend" Dalai Lama didn't teach you what exactly Karma means, let me try to get your head straight. Karma, is the consequence of actions in the interrelated world. So if you spill hate on some people and that comes back to you, that's Karma. Earthquake has nothing to do with human actions. If you really want to stretch it, 9/11, the hideous hate crime partly as a result of the U.S. foreign policy, or so they claimed, or hurricanes, many amplified by global warming caused by human society, scientists say, could be asked of "Is that karma?" But that wouldn't be right, since those who suffered had nothing to do with the causing actions. But, even Sharon Stone wouldn't be brain-damaged enough to pontificate such in public.

Now with those remarks, Chinese people would possibly detests films acted or produced by Ms Stone. That would be karma. Then again, when does Sharon Stone ever have any film worth watching?

Update: Stone apologized and Dior retracted her ads. Is that Karma? Wink, wink.

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Saturday, May 24, 2008


呵呵 偶忍不住英俊地笑了起来。

看了几篇关于萧红的评论,就想起前一阵在南方周末看到的葛浩文专访。找来细读,却发现有趣的一段。 你想,一个新闻话题里能同时出现两个或两个以上的酷词趣词,实在是让人手痒,遂贴过来一笑——


好吧 偶预备做两件事,一是用“首席接生婆”做几道造句练习,一是不管喜欢不喜欢,要对隔壁摔锅晓之以理动之以情:你如果老是睡的晚起太早的话,毛主席看了会不高兴的。

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Friday, May 23, 2008

天涯观察:王石事件乱弹 {Unthreading a donation episode}

[English summary]
{On Tianya, issues around an donation episode were hotly debated. Comments from Wang Shi, president and CEO of WanKe, a leading real estate company, irritated the online community. Wang's claim that the company's donation of RBM 2m to the Earchquake relief was adequate and his employees shouldn't be burdened with donations in excess of 10 Yuan was vehemently refuted. His remarks met not only contempt but also verbal abuses. At the core of the debate seemed also lie the differences of the starting points of the two sides. While Mr Wang mainly viewed quake donation as public relation and business lubricating strategy, like any other donation before, netizens demanded real philanthropy matching the real magnitude of the disaster.

It's easy to dismiss the episode as collectivism thinking vestige. Americans would be puzzled and appalled by the moral reprimand of not donating enough. However, like many things in China, it goes more complicate than that. One has to unthread the rapidly changing social structure puzzle to fully understand the underlying cause. The real estate giants in China, where not long ago all real estate property rights belongs to the state, are big beneficiaries of the changing system that short changes ordinary people in favor of development. No real estate developer, especially those established from early stage of economic reform, can confidently claim it never received favorism or bended the system. It is thus more understandable that the public who get the short end of the reform stick demand more social responsibility from those new riches. The social divide and sense of higher justice induce the easy venting verbal attack.

The recent Wang Shi episode reflects two major issues China faces: the rule of law and education failure.}

最近因为地震, 多去了几次天涯。发现那里最红的,就是王石捐款事件。当然说讨论算好听了,更多的是公干。该如何评判这一事件的双方?像所有中国的事一样,一句话两句话说不清楚, 必须剥开蚕丝的看。

王石者,万科房产的董事长。因为登山等活动也成了公众人物。万科捐200万,以及后来的追加措施都是以公司的名义,其实非个人行为,王的一番言论却使大众的矛头指向个人。美国人基本是看不懂的,连我也略感糊涂。不管是9/11还是Katrina, 美国人从来没有对任何公司或个人有道义上的要求。捐款本是自愿的事,就算王某发表了一些不合时宜的看法,为什么会引来恶语相向?美国人大概也就耸耸肩。是什么让这么多网民觉得骂人和施加语言暴力是天经地义的事,就算报纸评论也站在网民一边,认为“逼捐”有理?

双方看起来你来我回争论相当热闹,但我并不确定他们从一开始就知道双方的要义。王以企业家的精明睿智提出的负担论显然指的是捐款作为企业形象策略社会关系润滑的作用,不然何来负担二字?而网民所要求的则是发自内心震撼的慈善;虽然说的都是捐款。唾沫横飞于网民而言集体主义的潜意识,极强的民族归属感都是因素,但更深层的道德推断原因还是来自制度。中国房地产业从土地国有开始, 其发展盈利无不拜制度所赐。万科作为早期进入市场的企业,更是享受了近乎垄断的制度利租得以资本积累。十有八九在它发展的某个时期'bend the system'过。 在制度改革中拿面包棍短端的普通民众自然对类似企业的社会责任有更高的要求。当然这话题能得到持续关注也不排除有商业竞争因素,在现在中国的网络环境里这并不奇怪。



以法治国在任何时代都很诱人。问题是rule of law需要巨大的运行成本(数数美国的律师人数),而且法可能被少数人或集团劫持。在秦就变成了苛政。孔子提出的补充办法是用道德用仁。道德仁治也需要成本。古代的皇帝可不那么容易当,他不仅要处处作道德的表范才能全民向德,还要时不时受太傅御史们的批评,从而影响精英政治团体到普通民众。而现在这个系统打破之后,法治需要填充的各个领域基础既不结实也没有支付巨大成本的准备。教育失败也体现在在执行法和运用法上,让法治更遇阻力。

比较美国和中国的网上政治辩论是件很有意思的事。美国人喜欢举例引证,左右猛拳但从不摘下手套。中国网民则更辩证,热烈之中带着深深的愤世嫉俗。两国人都对政府抱有健康的不信任,但美国人更主动check the facts, 中国网民相对比相互间更“信任”,人云亦云起哄跟风更多。这很大程度上也和我们的教育有关系。中国的学校里比较少注重列参考书目,校对注明出处。美国则从小更注重这方面的习惯训练。中国的网络上不需要芭蕉扇都能飞出五百里。

担至少在self-reference上大家是一样。在西方从九零年代开始有条格言叫Godwin's law: 随着网络争论时间的持续,用纳粹或希特勒来做比较的概率是百分之百。这句话在中文网络同样适用--只需要把纳粹改成红卫兵。这个词也被一些支持王石的人所使用。到最后人们总是回到自己最熟悉的环境和历史。

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

The media coverage and the compassion fatigue

The media coverage of the Si Chuan earthquake has been, for the most part, excellent. It was said that was due in part to the increased transparent of the government. The most exposure though, was in press and on-line, rather than on TV - at least from what I've seen. NPR did some splendid cover also, I've heard.

I'm not sure how the difference in media affected the donation. For me, the printing press coverage had the distinctive advantage of not only covering the "news" but also paying more attention to the "stories", which was more detailed in description than average Chinese news coverage.

According to released numbers so far, donation from the U.S. is estimated to be in the above $30 millions range. It is a far cry from the Tsunami response, which had Mr Bush and many prominent celebrities go on TV pleading pledge and generate about $1.3B. At least, Aids to China far exceeded that to Burma, which adds up to $12.1m so far, partly due to large number of Chinese diaspora in the U.S. in addition to the transparency issue.

A.P. contributed the relatively small response to compassion fatigue. However, I think other explanations merit consideration also: #. American Economy is in a slump. #. Election primary takes away people's attention. #. Many Americans think Chinese government, if not people, is now rich and should be able to handle it on their own. After all, the U.S. owes more than a trillion to the Chinese government. #. Some people just don't like or care Chinese government or in extension people much.

Whichever is the reason, or a combination of some, is anybody's guess. You can draw it on your own.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Hooters and the cultural deficit

A moment of silence for the perished.

Now something more light-hearted.

If you go to the Beijing Olympics this summer, you can not only taste a slice of China but also find comfort in...hooters, which opened last year. Where else can you find a lame place where waitresses dancing to 80s pop songs like YMCA? Not even in America.

The fact that Beijing has the Hooters and the Hooters hasn't met much objection is not surprising, given the extremely pro-business regulation there and not much else. To quote some Chinese hooters girl, "In China, there aren't many feminists". Besides, sexual content in restaurant and entertainment business isn't exactly new in China's homegrown industry. In fact, I recently find that China has legitimized soft-porn industry too, only under the disguise of fine art nude photography.

A somewhat more interesting question is why the homegrown businesses have to feel the need of keeping sexual undertone somewhat underground but the foreign incorporated firm can trumpet sexuality (We don't find any 奶子饭店,do we?). Well, that requires smart marketing, self regulation and corporate standard. Like many things in China, there's regulation swap in work - yielding profits to foreign firms in exchange for better regulation and business practice.

I'm a bit surprised that Hooters is able to marketing itself as "American Spirit". But maybe not. The so called cultural deficit has been huge for China. To get a grip on this, you only needs to walk into a Chinese book store and an American Barns&Nobles. The amount of translated American publications along with its original version is huge. The same can't be said about Chinese books. (Hong Huang mentioned about this also in her recent msnbc interview.)

So the real interesting question is: Are they really able to understand the U.S. through watching American TV soaps and going to Hooters? On the second thought, maybe not, seeing how many people think Sex and City represents typical America. Shanghaiist has a very interesting, though a bit old, interview of a Chinese college hooters girl who was encouraged to worked there by her parents, who though hooters represent American value of "passionate and friendly", like..."mayflowers". It confirms also the genius-ness of South Park. Just like in Raisin, customers who want to flirt are encouraged to "come back".

At least, unlike Hooters in America, Hooters Beijing doesn't have DVDs of hooter girls for sale. Then again, they are unlikely to find so many double-Ds in China too. In other words, not much "hooters"*.

*hooters is American slang for breasts.

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Monday, May 19, 2008







同伴要的餐巾纸送来时被换作“无字天书”,调羹是“小李飞刀”,筷子是双节棍。一个小二对门口二庄主说去送外卖,二庄主居然说:“江湖险恶,快去快回... ”最后江南三怪收了二庄主发的“英雄贴”,怀踹找回的碎银子伴着所有的小二朗朗送客声——“青山不改,绿水常流,后会有期,恕不远送”,飘然而去...


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China Mourns

People across China observed 3 minutes of blaring silence (very moving Youtube Video) at exactly one week mark of the earth quake, to be followed by 3 days of national mourning. I'm not sure it's inappropriate to talk about hooters at this time or not, but I decide to pull a earlier post for later.

Internet rules
A report emerges about how a college student who was originally from the hilly disaster zone helped military to find a copter landing area by posting on an online forum. She recalled a flat-top high ground behind her friend's house. The posted information finally caught authority's attention after being widely circulated by the online community. Internet rules.

CCTV Benefit Concert
It's not much of a concert. I caught a glimpse of it through pplive. It almost left me wonder if one had to donate in order to be invited, or the other way around, i.e. if you were invited you were required to contribute. It had an eerie feel of taxation. But hey, if it helped the donation drive I ain't complaining.

Another noticeable contrast was between the TV presenters and ordinary people from SiChuan - heroes and victims of the earthquake. I sometimes had difficulty in comprehending what did people mean when they said someone in the media of being "not real". I sort of saw it here. The TV presenters - I'm not doubting their heart-felt sorrow or patriotic urge, it just came off that way - appeared as corny as hell despite their empathetically emotional, poem-reciting style.

In contrast, those invited special guests - from army generals to school children - couldn't be more real. Some of them were stoic and resolute, some vulnerable, some feisty. Others were uncomfortable showing emotions on the TV, like the daughter of the teacher who gave up life in order to protect his students. However, all of them are very genuine and plain touching.

Notes to CCTV presenters: such disaster and natural outflow of emotions need little embellishment or fanfare. Keep it real.

The damning science of quake prediction
Probably taking the extra caution, and responding to the criticism of not able to warn about the risk of earthquake, the government issued an unusual aftershock warning(said of 6-7 Richet Scale) in SiChuan.

Before that, many people were critical towards the seismic department, arguing that it should be more aggressive toward warnings, even if the evidence was not strong enough.

This time, the warning was issued. Cities, including mega cities like Chendu and Chongqing, turned into sleepless chaos. But the actual quake never came, except a mild aftershock in remote WuPing.

It really highlights the dilemma in quake prediction. (read one of the novel prediction method here) I'm no expert in seismic science, far from it. But I suspect quake prediction is a bit like any statistical prediction. It subjects to two errors, type-I and type-II error. one comes from the error in rejecting the hypothesis that a quake is coming, another comes from the error in rejecting the hypothesis that a quake isn't coming. Under normal circumstances, the second assumption is the operating norm, otherwise a society couldn't function properly. That's one of the reason an earthquake is rarely predicted, along with the low predicting power of the science.

Now under the operating assumption that a (following) shock is coming, it takes more to reject the hypothesis. The resulting chance of warning, as oppose to under the no-quake pre-assumption, is bigger. This is what I suspect of the most recent warning. Unfortunately, the probability that warning doesn't materialize also increases. You run the risk of throwing people's lives into mayhem and stressing them out.

ultimately the best use of seismic research is probably in long-run prediction, much like in stock market research - even though you can't generally predict the short-run price movement, but you can have an idea of the long term direction. So appropriate building codes etc can be set up and enforced accordingly.

It's no easy business.

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Friday, May 16, 2008

Death Won't Do Us Apart

{Poem reading dedicated to victims of the earthquake}

想着生活继续 天空失去美丽,你却等待明天站起
血脉能创造奇迹 你的呼喊就刻在我的血液里
相信生命不息 我看不到你,你却牵挂在我心里
血脉能创造奇迹 搭起双手筑城你回家的路基
生死不离,全世界都被沉寂 痛苦也不哭泣
血脉能创造奇迹 你一丝希望是我全部的动力

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Pulse of a Nation

[tracking the disaster and rescue]
"There was an earthquake" she said, "I'm feeling dizzy." We were talking on the MSN. She's in Northern China.

We joked about it.

Only to be shocked by the headline on New York Times when I woke up the next morning. CNN, BBC news, Washington post, I began to check on all kinds of English language news. The numbers of casualties were all over the place. But the information was sporadic. Before long, clutchfans, a bbs I visit regularly, has a thread running about the updates. Someone then pointed me to Shanghaiist. Shanghaiist? Is that even a correct word? I've always thought people from Shanghai were called Shanghainese. Or was that Shanghainite? But the folks there did a really good job of updating the situation in the confusing hours until..until they were too dead tired to do so.

Numbers continued to rise. Hundreds, thousands, 7000, close to 10,000, more than 20,000...Numbers were cold, it numbed you after a while. The early pictures and videos though, many of which were taken by ordinary people in the affected region, helped putting on a human face.

I could then understand why 24 hour cable news could have markets. Trying to find out the fate of people could be addictive. My appetite for coverage couldn't be satisfied by the English-language news no more. I began to search out Chinese sources.

[Finest moments]
Chinese websites responded very quickly. The culture of bbs came in handy also. Citizen reporters on sites delivered painful details or heartwarming stories to supplement the reporting from official media, which was very open and responsive this time.

I wandered to baidu postbar and tianya, the usually raucous places. People were mostly discussing the news and how to help. Some set up online vigils to pray for the victims. Still, some were arguing vehemently, but mostly because they were so stressed by the tragedy and were thinking out loud how to better. What happened in Sichuan grabbed everybody's mind.

BY this time, Shanghaiist had relayed the news that Red Cross China opened a call for donation. But the website was down when I tried to get on. It was overwhelmed by millions of people trying to get there. Thankfully it went back up later, for a while. (I later learned you can directly donate through Red Cross Hong Kong also. )

(On Tianya, the age-old Chinese attitude toward the riches were on display also, as many people hold donating in proportion to their ability as the moral responsibility of the new riches.)

The calamity was sickening. The outpouring of support was touching. The blood banks all over the country were filled in a day after the call for blood drive. There were these rescuers who walked 90 kms on foot overnight in order to reach the epicenter. There was that 13 year old boy who dig 4 hours by hand to save his classmates. There was these student who was trapped inside the collapsed structure, encouraging each other and singing under the debris to keep the hope of life. Every passing of ambulances brought loud cheers because that meant another life was saved.

My co-blogger helped packed her friend's truck with food and supplies. Her friends was to drive all the way down to the disaster area and volunteer there.

So I leave myself with this question: can we actually find encouragement and solace during such natural disaster? I believe we can. Cuddling together, Chinese people show they are strong and resilient in face of calamity. They show they care for one another, as a nation, more than ever. They show they are capable. The rescue and relief effort, like any human endeavor, is not going to be perfect, and grief will forever be etched in our heart. But this is also China's finest moment, and can potentially be the defining moment, as a modern nation.

some quotes:
All I want to say is: your livelihood are from people; so you decide (what to do). --PM Wenjiabao to rescuers and soldiers about to begin effort

Please, I'm begging you, let me go to save another, I can save one more.
-- A firefighter upon being ordered to temporary withdraw during the after-shock

Please spare my legs (from amputation), I will need them to take care of my parents when I grow up -- A rescued pupil before going to the surgery

I was very cold and hungry. I had to keep on reading to relieve my fear
-- A rescued school girl describing her 40 hours in debris with her book and flashlight

There is no Beichuan county any more
-- A member of Red Cross assessment team

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Wednesday, May 14, 2008



看到一些图片,忍不住悲伤 流泪。









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Tuesday, May 13, 2008


{A good case in limiting freedom of speech - intentional rumor in quake accidents and public safety: why Mr. Changping got it so wrong this time}
[Summary: Cases broke about someone spreading quake rumors in an attempt to draw eyeball of advertising attention; and an ex-journalist Chinese commentator gave his usual free speech sermon.]

显然是针对震灾期间网上造谣案件,原 南都的长平先生一连在路透上发表两篇评论文章。他先是莫名其妙引用了一番美国的沙利文案案例,进而借用个人经历诉求以地震散布谣言的权利

且不说沙利文案代表的诽谤案判决标准在美国和英国非常不同,英国法律上就没有严格的恶意要求 —— 不然为什么好莱坞明星纷纷到伦敦去打名誉赔偿案?长平先生先生所引证的方法更本就是谬误的。 名誉赔偿案涉及的是个体和个体之间的关系,震灾造谣则进入公共安全的范围,是故意散播的错误信息对公共安全的影响。长平先生只需要到美国来一趟,到任何大型公共场合大呼一声"bomb", 看言论自由的美国的警察会不会把你马上把你抓起来。摁个狗啃泥也是在所难免。到时切勿争辩说个词能有什么威胁。至于网络平台,美警方因对公众有安全威胁的网络言论抓人案例不胜枚举,我就不一一单列了。


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Monday, May 12, 2008


{Earth quake in South West China, felt through out the country}




唯有祈求平安健康吧 祈求每个人能够度过生命中大大小小的困难

More photos How's it feel in ChengDu

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How to blame it all on China, a guide

As an intelligent and conscientious man, I offer my service of finding ways to blame on China.

The most followed international news of recent days is cyclone disaster and relief effort in Myanmar. Amid the politics of food aid, it's not surprising that someone will soon find China to be blamed, proclaiming China has Burmese blood on its hands. The fact that China is among the first and largest unconditional aid provider while the U.S., whose aid comes with conditions - as usual, is still all talk be damned.

It's kind getting old though. The term along with the logic has already been used by groups pressuring for the Darfur issue. Some media genius even coined up genocide Olympics, as if calling the Beijing Game this outrageous term would make common Chinese people more sympathetic to their cause and help resolve the situation. The Chinese government, for their part, is sticking with the long standing no-interference policy. So what if China reverses its policy and get hard on Junta? There is a strong possibility that the so-called warm relationship would cool off, and the aids would be denied. sort of the situation the U.S. is in? And then the people would suffer more. There is no easy black and write when it comes to international policies. But I'm afraid the blame-it-on-China crowd would have a hard time understand that.

Nor am I here to defend Chinese policy. The post is to help find creative ways to blame it on China.

One of the most creative activist group is Dream For Darfur, which is solely focused on pressuring China, using upcoming Olympics as the leverage. According to their website, one of the cardinal sin of the Chinese as complicit was threatening the use of veto power unless some language to be modified, upon which the U.S. and France completely give up the motion. You would think, given the same logic and given the organization is based in the U.S., the U.S. and France should be pressured to force the vote first, not to give up over some language. By their inaction, does it make the Americans and French complicit too? But no, China would be a much easier target.

I don't pretend to know all the politics involved around Darfur issue, all the ins and outs, but I do know the focus on pressuring the government side encouraged the rebel leaders in Europe refuse to return to the peace talk. And I do know the most prominent NGO advocate groups' focuses are all, coincidently, gasp, in perfect alignment with the U.S. foreign policy. The current Sudan government is Islamic. Do you know of any well-known Save Somalia groups or groups focused on pressuring Ethiopia, which is sponsored by the U.S. in its invasion of Somalia and caused humanitarian crisis by using some of the same tactics accused of in Darfur?

However, let's not dwell on that. Let me focus on helping. I don't question the passion of folks at Dream for Darfur. I'd like to offer some help at math calculation. For the Chinese government, on one hand it has the Olympics, which will go on, successful or embarrassing; on the other hand it has oil trade that is increasing important to the energy starved China and their long standing non-interference principle. Do the calculation. Now, do you believe the government would cave in because some foreign group want to purposely link the Olympics with an affair as complex as Darfur? From a practical perspective, the donations you folk gather would have provided some relief to the suffering people in Darfur. In stead, they are wasted on garnering media attention, jetting protesters around the globe on the torch rout, flying Mia Farrow to Hong Kong, and possibly even buying some tickets to Olympics events.

However, while we are at blaming it on China, I have a bolder proposal for you. Since many Chinese would like to bring up the war in Iraq in conversation of Durfar - two wrongs don't add up to one right, I agree - why not blame that on China also? It would work. See, the U.S. invasion of Iraq has a $3 trillion price tag, which would not made possible without the Chinese willingly run a huge trade surplus and pump that money back into the American treasury. The American consumers wouldn't be able to continue enjoy their prosperity and cheap Chinese goods with the war going on, which would have increased the pressure to stop the war. China Finances Humanitarian Crisis in Iraq! That would be some catchy headline.

I could have provided more tips on how to blame it on China. (e.g. Blame Hilary's loss on China, her husband's administration has been soft on China, and she has taken on a harder line than Obama's campaign. China contributed to her loss.) But on the second thought I would save them for now and let you exercise on your own.

Peace to the world.


  • Perhaps the difference in attitude towards activist and non-interference is rooted more deeply than people realize. Christian religions has a notion that the whole world is under God and needs to be saved(see missionaries, crusades); while Chinese philosophy is more pragmatic and inward looking(see Confucius).

  • Advocate groups vs sovereign nations, or disintegrated international politics, has been an increasing trend in international politics. In a sense, AQ falls into this category too. While it's always remarkable to help advance humanitarian courses, it will be interesting to see how this trend effects national relationships.

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Beyond voyeuristic pleasure and feel good story

[English summary]{Book review}
I want to give my good words, trust me. The book, Love in Tibet, is recommended by a friend with a forward from a famous online writer, and she is obviously moved by it. Therefor, I get two motives on my hand: first, I don't want to be seen as cynical about love and love story; second, I don't want to appear as ignorant and rascal in comparison.

I guess it would not be difficult to write a book review - you either praise it first, or save the praise towards the end to balance. I'll put positives up front.

What would a CCTV commercial say about the book, in its typical oh-so 90s style? I'm thinking along the lines of "it fills up a deficit of book reading experience". Voyeuristic pleasure of fast-food culture, that is. Would yo want to know the detailed account of what girls are really thinking when they spot you and reach out for possible love? Do you want to know the secrets to impressing a sensitive Chinese college-age girl? You are in luck, as the book is consists of diaries of the-couple-to-be. It may as well be a sort of reference book for people who haven't experienced the courting precess, as the forward suggested.

O.k., is this harmonious enough already? For those who want to get the beef out of the book, you'll in for some disappointment. Reading the book is like seeing dinosaur s in a museum; the skeleton is there, but that's all there to it. Did I forget to mention you can stop reading this if all that you care is a feel good story and want to be moved? Whatever the content in the soup, it's getting what you want that counts most, isn't it?

The skeleton of the story is simple. Girl meets boy in Tibet. They develop feelings toward each other since both are longing (not to mention they are in their respective relationships at the time). Love is only to be revealed when they have to depart, back to their own separate city, but with some persistence and stroke of luck they make it. Thank god.

The boy's dairy drags on tour itineraries. The girl's provides more detailed account of their interactions, occasional reflection, and rare touching moments. Unfortunately we are provided limited to no clue of the characters in the story. What traits and backgrounds lead to them liking each other in secret early on? What does he see in the girl that makes him love her? Thus, it's very difficult to actually get into the character, how would the relationship end up if he isn't luckily presented the chance to go to London, where she's scheduled to study at. In the end, all I can guess is Tibet. The romantic mighty Tibet.

How is it possible that the accounts straight from diaries aren't helpful in getting the readers into the characters? You may ask. Well, I think that's precisely the fault and fast-food-ness in the book. There are a great deal that we presume of knowing and not putting into our diaries. Even when they triumphantly get together, we readers aren't allowed to share their happiness other than a laundry list activities. O.K., that's understandable too. People write a lot less into diaries when they are happy. Why is that, otherwise, we don't see many more love diaries get published? There must be millions worthwhile love diaries out there.

At the end, all we get is a story, a sketchy story, albeit a feel good one.

Avid fans of the book, now don't think I'm cynical about love. I'm not. I'll tip you a secret. Don't ever believe anyone who tell you this is an age of no real love, or this love story is the only palpably real love story. Love never dies. As long as men and women have to eat and sleep, there is love. It's just that most people who get the real love move on to live their happy life, leaving no time to tell their tale . Remember how does Tolstoy put it? yeah, happy families look alike.

If I have to dig what I get out of the book, it's realizing how important mobile text messaging becomes in keeping up relationships, especially to usually shy, inexpressive Chinese. But who am I kidding. You must have already known this. Oh, and my most exciting voyeuristic read was in my 9th grade, and would be forever kept secret.



CCTV的带九十年代风采的广告要是想夸这本书, 一定会说这本书填补了文化快餐业的一项空白。嗯,不夸张得说它填补了满足读者偷窥欲的一项空白。小男生们想知道从心里有意口难开开始的心理过程么?想知道如何打动文女青年么?据说这本书里的都是来自主人公日记的真实的纪录。在这买个老鼠药想自杀还能有假的时代,这是多弥足珍贵啊。以后再也不用让吹嘘当年看过手抄本少女之心的老流氓得意了。和菜头显然也是承认偷窥于这本书的核心地位的,虽然委婉地放到第三:“博客里有男女双方的细腻心理活动全过程,对于尚未恋爱或者处于恋爱中的人,可以作为参考。”



故事的鱼骨头或者恐龙骨架很简单。发生在藏地的从同游客到亲密爱人的故事,才子佳人美景大团圆,和菜头的介绍比我能煽动的多。男的不急不缓记着旅游流水账,女的细腻一点,偶尔抒发一下情怀自我剖析一下郎有情郎无情的心理。事实上我很难代入人物,也看不到太多人物性格。我看不到是什么样的性格背景让女生对男孩一开始就忐忑向往。对男孩为什么看上女生喜欢女生什么更是一无所知。也看不出如果不是天作巧合有相聚伦敦的机会,这一对的未来会走向哪里。 我只能猜是西藏,一切都是因为我们伟大的西藏。也许有人要问,难道日记不是最能找到代入感的真切感受?是,正因为是日记才有很多东西理所当然无需交代,也就不剥夺了我们读者吃肉的权利,连我们分享他们的“蜜月”期的喜悦也被流水账一笔带过。我是不是应该反问世界上为什么没有更多爱情日记没有发表?




原型,给想把偷窥进行到底的人 冰箱推荐

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Saturday, May 10, 2008






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Friday, May 9, 2008

Multiple Shades

An interesting post at Inside-Out China among other things relate to dates in modern Chinese history in which youth movement were at the forefront of the events. May 4th 1911, June 4th 1989, or the spring some 19 years after, they are of different contents, but are they so fundamentally different? There are certainly similarities: they are all of buoyant youth, of multiple shades - maybe not Rashomon but prism of color. Unfortunately people are so used to simple messages, often neglecting the fine details, one way or the other.

I've come across a very interesting quote by someone who was there from a bbs. I'll put it up here in original entirety(including typos) without commenting. Without further ado:

...Over the years, I've chatted with people on welfare, but also sat in the same car with FDIC chair; attended speeches by major Chinese dissidents, but also participated meetings by pro-China scholars; done charity work, but also engaged in profit-driven activities; worked with plaintiffs, but also helped defendants. In a word, I've dealt with many many different things from many many different angles. 19 years after Tianmen Square and 14 years after living in the freest country in the world, however, I must admit that I am a changed man.
(...omit to protect privacy.)
We were definitely manipulated by an invisible hand (hands?) behind the scene. I was given a loud speaker that was so advanced at the time that it could only came from certain sources. Too bad we didn't know better. But once again we were only a bunch of unsophisticated college kids and the only thing we had was passion. I think we had and still have too much "Bushism" in our blood, that is, you're-either-with-us-or-agains-us kind of thinking. People who think that way can be easily manipulated. In our history it's never been an honorable thing to comprise. But politics is all about comprise, an concept even many people in this country start to forget. Just listen to how Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Fox News talk about the democrats and the Clintons, and how New York Times and Stephanie Miller talk about Republicans and the Bush administration.

I label myself a "quasi" dissendident in that as a student I partipated in almost all the anti government demonstrations from 1986 to 1989. But I was never a professional dissendent and will never become one. I'm of the opinion that I can make better contributions by discussing solutions rather than by pointing fingers all the time. As for China's political future, I'm with the school of thoughts that structural change will come in due course but we'll have to "cross the river by feeling the stones" like we did with our economy for the past three decades. It has always been my firm belief that we have to find our own path to freedom rather than copying the western model. China is so big, so complex and has so much historical baggage that we simply can't afford to have half the country hate the other half. Eventually, every relevant party in our society needs to look at what happened in the past with a reconciliatory attitude because we do not need another revolution. As for the small number of professional dissendidents living in the west who want to become China's future ruling class, well, they can continue to enjoy their dream but if they don't clean up their act and start to rule themselves in a democratic way, I suspect that their number will continue to dwindle. - by James

For further reading:

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很久没失眠了,居然又。站在阳台望了会儿窗外,寂静安详的夜。窗台上的绣球悄悄开出一朵花,都不知道是什么时候的事,可它不在乎是吧? 自顾自地娇艳绚烂。





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Thursday, May 8, 2008

How beauty is born and man deals with it

Watch this hilarious Dove Evolution commercial and the parody video response. The mission stated of The Campaign for Real Beauty is to be "a global effort that is intended to serve as a starting point for societal change and act as a catalyst for widening the definition and discussion of beauty." China isn't found on their country list. I'm wondering whether there is similar movement in China.

This shouldn't sit well with the cosmetic industry. The real question is, what look does the woman in the video really prefer in her life? Is the human natural perception worth the fight?

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Wednesday, May 7, 2008

We Are Peasants

This post means not to be taken too seriously. Seeing how late Bo Yang's Ugly Chinese can be taken a run with, I have to caution. But the infinite wisdom remains.

Ever heard of Chinese teenagers quarrel? "You are such a peasant" one would say, sometimes in a half joking way. The other would be taken aback, "No, you are." Don't tell people in Wisconsin or Provence France, but Chinese are not proud of being called peasants.

Calling someone peasant is one of those preciously few things that has the magical power of stroking ones ego. A while ago, I was out drinking with some of my male friends, upon whence someone brought up the topic that Ning Jing, a Chinese actress known for her role in The Red Valley, married to an American actor named Paul Kersey from Minnesota. That made them sad, since many of them fancied her. Until, someone burst it out, "peasant", referring to the fact that Paul Kersey was a farm owner. The laughters followed, beer tasted a lot better. All was forgiven.

Image from Shanghai Planet
However, not to be mistaken, we Chinese, as a people, were peasants. And to a degree, we still are.

Chinese being peasants or China being agriculture state means Chinese are historically quite peaceful. Over the years, we grew quite good at being peasants. So while Western ancient empires such as Rome built on subjugation and facilitation of commerce, the highest objective of each Chinese dynasty, except maybe the Mongols, was to protect itself from outside forces, so the people could live their agrarian Xanadu. Yes Chinese warred to ensure silk trade route too, but that always came as second order. That Confucius guy codified the ethnics of a peasant society - to better yourself and then the family and then the nation. Therefore, the dream of a retired Chinese intellectual was to "pick asters beneath the Eastern fence,my gaze upon the Southern mountain rests".

Today a dominant proportion of population are still farmers despite all the fanfare about migrant workers. What about the urbanites, you ask. They are no less peasant. They may have some money, but peasantry is deeply rooted. Why else bourgeois is still a fashionable urban daily vocabulary?

Sometimes I feel I can understand why places like Paris don't like Chinese. Let's call it peasant-phobia for the time being. If you have traveled to the Europe recently you'd know what I meant. Scores of Chinese tourists -peasants I may remind you -with cash strapped on their waists can be seen at almost every attraction. If their picture snapping go-merry doesn't give their peasantry away, their distinct fashion does. You see that black sports blazer paired with athletic shoes? He would be a rural entrepreneur. A better tailored suit with white shirt underneath even under the summer heat? That's a give away, he is most certainly a local government official on organized tour.

In Paris, I was approached by a lady who gave me 600 euro on the street and asked me to help her buy a Louis Vuitton handbag. Apparently she had enough shopping trips to the store that LV securities could recognize her; and apparently a bag straight from Champs-Elysees somehow meant more to her than those available in most big Chinese cities. (Most LVs are made in China also. EU's product origin rule allows it not to label them "made in China", although I don't think she cared to know.) Maybe they mistook her as bag scalper (I don't know that's possible), maybe she couldn't bring herself to be understood, maybe LV was disgusted with the peasantry they decided not to let the poor lady have her bag, as gift she said. I wouldn't know. What I did know was she trusted some total stranger who looked like her patriot with cash in order to buy some luxury bag. Frankly, I couldn't think of any other people who could pull that kind of peasantry off.

Enough with the anecdotes, what about the big picture? China is now the factory of the world, but we are still peasants? Does that make sense?

No one likes to admit it, but we are peasants. Chinese spend like peasants; saving is always a virtue since forever. How else do you explain accumulating billions of trade surplus, fully knowing the excessive buildup itself is going to hurt the value? (learned anything from Japan?)The leading artists are peasants; Zhang Yimou, Mo Yan certainly are, favorite skits performers on New Years Gala are peasants too without exception. The CCP is Peasant. This used to be by its own admission. Judging by its often utter clumsiness, we see nothing changed much. To take it too far like some columnist in Washington does, is giving the CCP too much credit. when you have to find grain self-sufficiency policy to criticize for, you are trying too hard. Worse, you are committing the sin of not utilizing the wisdom of this blog post. Even when the Chinese saves up enough and tries to buy some asset, we don't escape being peasant. Wall Steer gladly takes the money for some non controlling shares, and then leave the bashing job to the main street. The only sure thing Chinese can buy, is the large sum of commission paid to American and European consultancies like Goldman Sachs.

All this brings us back to the topic of Olympics. Why do Chinese care so much of Olympics? Not only the government, but the ordinary people. By now you should have guessed right, because we are peasants trying to join the industrial party decades too late. We'd be better off if we acknowledge and embrace that fact.

*The challenge to you: List your peasants and the thing you find peasant.






历史上的农业中国小日子混得不错,这也让中国能保持一个相对和平的帝国。不同于古罗马等西方文明帝国以征服和维商的风格,中国历朝除了元朝军事上最高要务是保持边界的和平,让内地的农业社会能不受扰得发展自己的桃花源。当然中国也为保证丝绸之路的通畅发动过一些征战,但那些相对处于次要的地位。 孔夫子的修身齐家治国成了农业中国的道德要范,退休的知识分子更是以“采菊东篱下,悠然见南山”为理想。





也许我们不想承认,但答案是肯定的。中国人消费像农民。勤俭节约是自古以来的美德。不然怎么解释明明知道这美元积累的越多越可能不值钱还累积起一天十个亿的贸易顺差?艺术上,一线的也是农民当家。张艺谋莫言,农民。春晚最受欢迎的小品还是农民。CCP首先也是农民,虽然西方的评论家喜欢用一些不着边际的形而上的词。如果一个评论家需要批评中国的粮食自给政策的话,显然是太过努力用力过猛了;更糟的是,显然没有吸取这贴子里的智慧。;) 就算中国积累了点钱伤脑筋想要买点资产,我们看起来还是农民。华尔街左边高兴的接过不构成控股资产的钱右边媒体政客就开始抨击。中国唯一能确认买到的是众咨询公司的巨额咨询费。


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4、曙光:2007年10月18日--- 比特海日志10月16日,高兴的事

男主角铭基同学是个工程师,香港人,港大高才生,见过他的人都不会认为他是1977出生的,因为看起来实 在太年轻了:女主角傅真同学受过良好的家庭教育,人大毕业,博览群书,有思想,又特立独行,肚子里真正有墨水,现居英国伦敦做投资银行,如果没记错,女主 角刚过第二个本命年已步入围城两年。





在张艾嘉的《心动》影片中,金城武也是这样拍下一张又一张的天空,从十八岁时恋爱分手一直到中年时妻子病逝。葬礼结束后,他把这些照片全都送给赶来日本参 加葬礼的,他十八岁时的女友。她在回程飞机上好奇地摊开那些只有天空和云朵的照片,看见了照片后面那些写着日期的如“1992年1月14日,非常冷”之类 的字迹。看见最后的那句话时,已届中年,历经沧桑的她也忍不住落下泪来:



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Tuesday, May 6, 2008


以德报怨 宽厚相待

种下恨 收获恨
种下爱 收获爱

要明白事理 不再做娇纵任性的孩子
安静做一个 温暖的女人

一点一点 完善自己




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Sunday, May 4, 2008

The Peril in the Name of Culture

Against the risk of being ridiculed, I'd say I learned something from, a las, Marie Clair.

A story in the magazine details how Thailand government prevents the Karen - the long necked people - from leaving the country, in the name of preserving the culture. Karen girls are left no option but to put on their traditional metal neck toils and pose for tourists in exchange for paltry salary. In effect, human zoo.

This reminds me a lot of the "cultural genocide" talk of the Tibetan situation. Aside from the fact much of the accusation is categorical -I've never seen any present day detailed evidence of cultural sabotage other than what happened in cultural revolution some 40 years ago or the influx of other ethnicities into Tibet, we should be very careful in defining cultural preservation before politicizing it.

Culture is dynamic. It changes and shapes itself through out history and interactions of people. What do we have left if we cleanse Korean or Japanese culture of Chinese elements? Do we have to agree with the laments of a Chinese chauvinist that present day Chinese culture has many elements of Manchuria culture and even increasingly western culture? Trying to preserve the Tibetan culture integrity certainly has romantic idealism and to some extent is laudable. However, going at it by isolating Tibet and labeling every change as 'culture genocide' is hypocritical and pure idiocy. Even if Tibet were to escape China, it wouldn't escape modernism.

As Karen people can attest to, it is people that create the culture. Culture should not be the shackle on the people.

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Saturday, May 3, 2008

男人如衣服 Man and Clothes




哎呀呀 ,偶忽然对自己的突发奇想感到很兴奋,赶快把闺蜜们拿来印证。









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Lost in Translation

The NYT book section is introducing a bunch of contemporary Chinese novels, which allows me to be re-educated about the literature scene in China. Featured are Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out (生死疲劳) by Mo Yan, Wolf Totem (狼图腾) by Jiang Rong, and The Song of Everlasting Sorrow (长恨歌) by Wang Anyi.

Skipping through Mo Yan's newest endeavor, I am not impressed, just as I was not impressed by his Big Breasts, Wide Hips, his defining fiction, many years ago. I've always felt there were elements of gimmickry in the language Mo choose to tell the story, or even in the many fetish he depicts. In fact, in my view his nonfiction work about his days in rural Shandong is better. Now I think he's in danger of relegating himself to irrelevance.

More interesting is that of Wang, who used to be one of my favorite novelists. Her ability of tell story in unhurried pace and command of unpretentious writing are both admirable, especially in her short and medium length works. The Song of Everlasting Sorrow happens to be one of her books that I haven't read. So, I'm interested in taking on the English version, enough that I read the available excerpt in one breath.

The narrating style has some Wang's feel, but overall it just isn't Wang Anyi enough. After locating the original Chinese copy, I find the translation is quite liberal, leaving out whole blocks of sentences at times. I guess Chinese has such unique rhythm, while a whole section of metaphors may work in Chinese, verbatim translation into English would probably feel like a drag-out. Is that what they call lost in translation?

The most interesting and informative piece of the bunch though is an essay about Guo Jing Ming and the status of China's pop fiction. In conversation with F, I've also learned that cockiness is a trademark of those young writers. So young Chinese are treating popular literature like entertainment, even more so than Americans. I don't know whether I should be elated that Chinese are catching up quick, or be worried.

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Friday, May 2, 2008

女权主义者的死胡同 What goes wrong with feminism


那个贴的洪晃的贤惠缺点论让我想起不久前哈佛大学的关于女性婚前性行为的一场 辩争。辩论的一方是Fredell,学生组织真爱革命(True Love Revolution)的主席。 她所提倡的是女人要珍惜和绝对维护自己的处子之身,直到走进婚姻殿堂。除了自己身体力行,她们也在校园里发传单,开讲座。为了避开一些人的女性性别歧视指控,她们也向男生宣传同样的观点,欢迎他们的加入。Fredell似乎满意她的生活状态,但有点暗恋她的副主席就可怜点。禁欲主义让他“多看几眼女生有时就会有生理反应"。辩论的另一方是亚裔女生Chen,校园里著名的拿来主义实行者。她信奉的是坚决的性自由,以每一个征服为荣。






那么“贤惠闹的”的倒霉和什么有关呢? 当然还是男人。那么不要贤惠的成果指向是什么呢? 当然还是男人。看到没有?男人二字我打字都打累了。这贤惠缺点论看上去是不折不扣的女权主义,是不能让男人如愿,而实质上承认的是男人为中心,女人处于依附地位,需要按照男人的喜好取向博弈的社会状态和对此的妥协。为什么女人就不能为了自己而贤明仁慈善良温柔通情达理?又不是离开了男人这些就忽然成为缺点了。进一步说,因为XX染色体里包含的母爱天性女人比男人多一份仁慈善良温柔也是自然的。一个女权主义者,为什么要因为男人而把这些自然的东西打倒?



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Thursday, May 1, 2008

15 minutes, please?

So, Grace Wang has learned one thing distinctively American culture: the American celebrity principle of grabbing 30-second spotlights and turned them into 15 minutes of fame. (see the recent Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. story.)

I stumble upon a first-hand recount of her appearance as debate mediator on BBC, which intrigues me to search for her updates. Google search bar promptly helps to fill out the entry.

Apparently she made herself available for various media/entertainment outlets under the guidance of Scott Savitt - at the cost of postponing her final exams at that, wrote an essay, polished again by Scott Savitt, for Washington Post, and waited on calls from 60 Minutes. It's tempting to say that here's some young girl exploited by the media. But seeing the demand is mutual, I'd say she fits right in.

It would be a waste of time to comment on her essay (essays?). But here's a quote right off the article probably summed it all up. "One-sixth of the population in the world already knew my national ID and my parents' address," she said of her initial thought when The New York Times called. "I didn't have any privacy anymore."

Sorry, Grace. None of the people I know of, inside or outside of China, has any knowledge of that. Most of them don't even know who Grace Wang is.

How does that Carly Simon song go? "You're so vain, I'll bet you think this song is about you? Don't you? Don't you?"

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The not so subtle news

When we have a billion people, you said we were destroying the planet./ When we tried limiting our numbers, you said it is human rights abuse/When we were poor, you thought we were dogs./ When we loan you cash, you blame us for your debts./ When we build our industries, you called us polluters./ When we sell you goods, you blame us for global warming. - a silent, silent Chinese(Nic)

I've barely had time to comment on recent news reports with eyes on China. Although I do come across people whose impressions are influenced by those "news" slash analysis everyday.

European business officials warned anti-French boycott could be met by similar action against Chinese products in Europe. Well, way to convince the average Chinese that European leaders really care about human rights in China. Guess what? Protest and boycott are human rights of individuals. And guess what? Unlike EU officials, Chinese official didn't come out to incite the situation. Rather, they tried to calm it down, fairly or unfairly. Paris city councils hung the "Paris defends human rights everywhere in the world" banner during the torch run. I guess they should really hung "Paris pretends to defend human rights, except when you moved my cheese."

My main complain of the media isn't even presentation of the facts or angle of the stories. It's the subtle use of words that betray reporters personal inclination, such as the insistence on calling Tibet(Xizang) Tibet while referring other parts of China as China instead of "the rest of China". It subcontextually convey the message Tibet isn't part of China. Ladies and gentlemen, the film (see previos post) by the U.S. War department 50 some years ago says the opposite. It clearly shows Tibet as a part of China.

(For that matter, why didn't I see any report of Tibet People's Uprising Movement while there are plenty references of the Dalai Clique quote. )

Even when the media tried to show some sympathy, the disparate tone carried over. In a recent NYT story about Chinese students fighting for their country's image, it said of their handouts "contained a jumble of abbreviated history, slogans and maps with little context. A chart showing that infant mortality in Tibet had plummeted since 1951, when the Communist Chinese government asserted control, did not provide any means for comparison with mortality rates in China or other countries." judging by that remark, you would think of the students were asked to hand in their term paper. Did I see any handouts from the "Free Tibet" crowd ever subject to this standard? Of course, never. (You won't know from the article that Chinese Student Association of USC discouraged members from going to the event, "just ignore it". I Learn it from 77, who's about to graduate from USC.)

In this media age, it's simply difficult to differentiate news reporting from commenting. And the newest fashion in the China reporting is to play psychologist. Not to worry most of them are ill equipped to understand Chinese psychology.

Simon Elegant of Time wonders loud why China is burning mad. The answer is of course conveniently found in China's victim mentality, or nationalism. All else fails, blame it on the Government education. as if blaming on the CCP would make everything explanatory and well.

Allow me to complete go off topic here, but is Elegant really Simon's given name? Given that the royal house of England merely changed their last name to Windsor from Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, it's a bit...I'll call yourself Elegant, isn't it?

One of the example that Time's China Blog uses to chastise Chinese insecurity is that how the French seemingly not care much during the freedom fry episode. Hello?! The French fry isn't really French or even French invented. Why should the French feel insulted? Is Time's reporter this ignorant? BTW, personally I wouldn't care "Chinese fortune cookie" being called "Zimbabwe fortune cookie" or whatever either. There isn't anything Chinese about them. The ironic part is that the whole freedom fry farce is the U.S. congress's reaction over France's stance on Iraq. The U.S. freaking congress. Tell me who is sensitive now? In fact, if Americans are so cool, Rev. Wright's remarks wouldn't be causing Obama this much trouble.

Oh, I forget, in the U.S.'s case, Time should duly refer nationalism as patriotism. Nationalism is reserved for country like China.

Now I'll be the first to admit things like lack of sincere apology from the Japanese do hinder Chinese people to turn over the history page, and gain a more modern concept of nationality. However, foreign reporters like Mr Elegant never stepped into Chinese shoes. They never have to experience what Chinese have been through, even the more recent ones. The first time they stepped onto Chinese soil, they were foreigners living in a comfortable high life. That by itself makes them the privileged class in China. They may think living in China makes them qualified to play psychologist. They are not.

I'll save the Chinese history class for another day.

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