Great Hall of the People, III

Anything goes. The lines are open.

The Discussion: 131 Comments

I’m headed down to the PRC Embassy in Korea to get my Chinese visa. W00t!

August 2, 2005 @ 5:46 pm | Comment

Some klansmen in my town are trying to pass a “nude negro Law”. They want blacks to walk around nude on the street. They say this will keep the crime rate down. Sounds crazy to me. I for one am not interested in seeing nude male blacks walk down my street, though I wouldnt mind nude female blacks. Of course there’s no chance of this law passing, but it is interesting none the less.

August 2, 2005 @ 6:24 pm | Comment

Johnny, when will you be in China?

Al, I’m sure the law will pass. It sounds sensible and fair.

August 2, 2005 @ 6:27 pm | Comment

Gordon,

when i am looking for some pics of chinese kids sh*t in public, see what i found:

http://tinyurl.com/9pka2

August 2, 2005 @ 7:31 pm | Comment

http://tinyurl.com/9pka2

uh oh ……..

August 2, 2005 @ 7:34 pm | Comment

ha, i actually took an identical picture. i was worried it was me for a second, but i don’t have those bad-ass sideburns.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:04 pm | Comment

ha.

Ever hear the old saying..

“When in Rome, do as the Romans”.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:08 pm | Comment

Actually Bingfeng, I remember reading an article awhile back about English people pissing in public.

Apparently it was such a problem that it had resulted in damaged property and smelly streets. That’s why they’ve started opening public toilets at night – or so the article stated.

I’ve started keeping my camera with me at all times and just for you, the next time I catch someone, Chinese or foreign, doing the 1-2 in public – I’m gonna snap their picture and post it to the web.

Which do you think I will get first, a Chinese or a foreigner? ๐Ÿ™‚

August 2, 2005 @ 8:12 pm | Comment

Yeah, i hope bingfeng was joking! i’m only outside about one hour everyday, but i see plenty of people going to the bathroom outside! gimme a break!

August 2, 2005 @ 8:14 pm | Comment

walk down fumin road to julu road around 7 or 8 in the morning. the bums begging in this area shit outside overnight, and then for some reason it just gets smeared all over the place. it smells like something straight out of hell in a hot summer like this.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:16 pm | Comment

a chinese for sure ๐Ÿ™‚

but Gordon, you won’t try the way that peeper suggested, will you?

good luck, i am looking forward to your pictures

August 2, 2005 @ 8:17 pm | Comment

walk down fumin road to julu road around 7 or 8 in the morning. the bums begging in this area shit outside overnight, and then for some reason it just gets smeared all over the place. it smells like something straight out of hell in a hot summer like this.

Posted by kevin at August 2, 2005 08:16 PM

————

while some chinese piss and sh*t outside due to the lack of public toilets in china, i don’t really understand why there are so many sh*t outside in the beautiful american streets when there are plenty public toilets open for them

but anyway, “When in Rome, do as the Romans”.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:20 pm | Comment

more specifically, a lot human sh*ts in the streets of US

sorry for the rude language

August 2, 2005 @ 8:21 pm | Comment

God, you’ve all give me an earworm:

“I have a sad story to tell you,
It may hurt your feelings a bit:
Last night when I walked to my bedroom,
I stepped in a pile of
ShhhAVING Cream,
be nice and clean!
Shave every day and you’ll
always look keen!”

August 2, 2005 @ 8:24 pm | Comment

haha..I think I’ll skip the peeper method.

I’m not above doing a #1 outside if I have no other alternative.

Several years ago when I was in Shanghai for the first time there was a serious lack of public toilets and everywhere I went they told me โ€“vโ€”L so after my eyes turned yellow and my teeth started floating I jumped behind a row of bushes to relieve myself (clear out of public sight). I was surprised to find myself in the company of three Chinese guys doing the same exact thing.

Today, I don’t see much sense in it because there are public toilets everywhere and even though they rate among the most disgusting places on earth, it only takes a few moments to empty the bladder. Of course I feel sorry for anyone that has to pinch a loaf off. That’s why I just stay home on those days when I find myself needing to make several trips to the toilet.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:30 pm | Comment

this is funny, i missed all that human shit bingfeng is talking about during my twenty one years of living in the US. but i sure haven’t missed it in my three years here…

August 2, 2005 @ 8:31 pm | Comment

why there are so many sh*t outside in the beautiful american streets when there are plenty public toilets open for them

Bingfeng, I’m afraid I’m just going to have to say that you are making stuff up in an attempt to make China look better.

People may pee in the alleys of America (out of public), but I’ve never seen anyone taking a crap in public.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:34 pm | Comment

For one, it’s against the law. If you are caught relieving yourself in America you will be arrested and heavily fined.

2. If another citizen catches you relieving yourself in public (espeically #2), they are probably either going to confront you themselves, or they will definitely use their mobile phone to call the police and more likely than not, they will follow you until the police have caught up.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:37 pm | Comment

talking about the lack of public toilets, i actually had a funny story of playing chinese chess in bill clinton’s restroom in shanghai :

http://tinyurl.com/8xca4

btw, the american sh*ts are really really stinky, probably due to too much meat food

August 2, 2005 @ 8:40 pm | Comment

In my entire life I have never seen anyone do what BF describes in America (No. 2 in public), nor have I ever seen anyone performing No. 1 on a crowded sidewalk in a major city. I have seen both in China. I’m not saying this is something bad about Chinese, I realize they are joining the modern age and will need time. But it is simply a matter of fact, you will see these things in China and you wil virtually ever see them in America.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:42 pm | Comment

Bingfeng, I’m afraid I’m just going to have to say that you are making stuff up in an attempt to make China look better.

People may pee in the alleys of America (out of public), but I’ve never seen anyone taking a crap in public.

Posted by Gordon at August 2, 2005 08:34 PM

———–

“bar streets” in rochester, nys

August 2, 2005 @ 8:42 pm | Comment

i’m sorry, but this is too much like the other day when bingfeng said japan was dirty. then yesterday he said he couldn’t sleep his first night in america cuz of all the gunshots. and now americans shit all over the place?

August 2, 2005 @ 8:44 pm | Comment

i can’t believe it at the first glance, and made sure those were not dog sh*ts, i dare not to stay in that street too long, a lot of strong drunk men …..

August 2, 2005 @ 8:45 pm | Comment

I’m not looking for face here, i’m just trying to be honest, and i don’t think bingfeng is being completely honest here.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:45 pm | Comment

i’m sorry, but this is too much like the other day when bingfeng said japan was dirty.

——————

japan is very clean, outside. i never denied this.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:48 pm | Comment

the american sh*ts are really really stinky, probably due to too much meat food

My friend, I think you have other problems if you are going around sniffing other peoples dung piles.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:48 pm | Comment

I’m not looking for face here, i’m just trying to be honest, and i don’t think bingfeng is being completely honest here.

Posted by kevin at August 2, 2005 08:45 PM

—————

sorry i didn’t take some photos for you

August 2, 2005 @ 8:49 pm | Comment

….digging into my old psych textbooks now:
“Anal….fixation…” Oh, WOW, there’s an illustration of bingfeng!

August 2, 2005 @ 8:52 pm | Comment

the american sh*ts are really really stinky, probably due to too much meat food
My friend, I think you have other problems if you are going around sniffing other peoples dung piles.

Posted by Gordon at August 2, 2005 08:48 PM

———–

private toilets in the US are OK, except it’s a little troublesome to ask for the key to open it, but some public toilets, ohhhhhhhhh, my godness, i almost fall into a COMA

even the stinkiest public toilet in china can not compare with that smell

forgive my sensitivity

August 2, 2005 @ 8:53 pm | Comment

How on earth did this morph into the scatology thread??

August 2, 2005 @ 8:55 pm | Comment

….digging into my old psych textbooks now:
“Anal….fixation…” Oh, WOW, there’s an illustration of bingfeng!

Posted by Ivan at August 2, 2005 08:52 PM

————-

LOL

are you looking into your %^&#%^& for another Da Shan?

August 2, 2005 @ 8:55 pm | Comment

Ivan I think it’s called Fecal Fetish.

August 2, 2005 @ 8:56 pm | Comment

How on earth did this morph into the scatology thread??

Posted by richard at August 2, 2005 08:55 PM

————

LOL!!!

i am really sorry, richard. i will just shut up

August 2, 2005 @ 8:57 pm | Comment

Richard, I think it started with this:

Gordon,

when i am looking for some pics of chinese kids sh*t in public, see what i found:

http://tinyurl.com/9pka2

Posted by bingfeng at August 2, 2005 07:31 PM

August 2, 2005 @ 8:59 pm | Comment

You guys have far too much time on you hand and too many bizarre, if not disgusting, hobbies.

China needs to spend some of those $700 billions to build a million public restrooms. Of course, they need to station guards in them to prevent people from doing the “nasty,” like they do here in the States.

August 2, 2005 @ 9:00 pm | Comment

For bingfeng, from Wikipedia:
“Anal retentive:….the intended implication is that an “anally retentive” person needs to “loosen up” a little instead of “holding onto it.”
Alright, now you can go on about how Japan has not “correctly” apologized….

August 2, 2005 @ 9:02 pm | Comment

Richard, I think it started with this:

Gordon,
when i am looking for some pics of chinese kids sh*t in public, see what i found:

http://tinyurl.com/9pka2

Posted by bingfeng at August 2, 2005 07:31 PM

Posted by Gordon at August 2, 2005 08:59 PM

———–

not really, gordon

you forget the question you asked before this post: “bingfeng, do you parents allow you sh*t on ground when you are a kid?”

August 2, 2005 @ 9:12 pm | Comment

For bingfeng, from Wikipedia:
“Anal retentive:….the intended implication is that an “anally retentive” person needs to “loosen up” a little instead of “holding onto it.”
Alright, now you can go on about how Japan has not “correctly” apologized….

Posted by Ivan at August 2, 2005 09:02 PM

————

take your time, no hurry to discuss japan until you catch the Da Shan in your toilet

August 2, 2005 @ 9:14 pm | Comment

My God, what have I created??

August 2, 2005 @ 9:16 pm | Comment

I’ll be in China from August 27 to mid-December, studying Chinese at BeiDa. Can’t wait!

August 2, 2005 @ 9:47 pm | Comment

And this isn’t even the gross toilet story thread…

August 2, 2005 @ 10:22 pm | Comment

Kevin, Gordon,

Thank you for making a profound statement: “US is cleaner and better place than China”.

August 2, 2005 @ 10:38 pm | Comment

Oh my Lisa, you just pointed out something I had missed.

For some reason I forgot that this wasn’t the nasty pooper story.

August 2, 2005 @ 10:38 pm | Comment

hahaha…Will lays down the law with his pet troll.

August 2, 2005 @ 10:51 pm | Comment

I think Bingfeng is winding you all up for a reaction and doing a good job of it.

Now, isn’t hiding in a longdrop to get a look at women’s asses kind of its own punishment? On several levels?

August 2, 2005 @ 10:52 pm | Comment

Richard, an “open thread” is an “open thread”, innit? Even if it has opened into something nasty. You were expecting nonstop erudite debate, perhaps? Cmon, man. We’re just bloggers.

August 2, 2005 @ 10:54 pm | Comment

“And now that my story has ended,
I hope you are happy with it,
If any of you are offended,
Stick your head in a bucket of
SHAving cream! Be nice and clean!
Shave every day
And you’ll always look keen!”
(Oh I loved that song, when it was all over the radio around 1973….)
๐Ÿ™‚

August 2, 2005 @ 11:08 pm | Comment

NYTimes has a nice long article about US/China economic relationship

A Trade War with China?

August 2, 2005 @ 11:23 pm | Comment

a story that might disappoint other lisa:

chinese loves american WAR*MAD
http://tinyurl.com/c3msy

August 3, 2005 @ 12:14 am | Comment

Bingfeng, that photo is priceless! You know there was a story about an American Walmart where they offered some absurd low price on I think a DVD player, and this woman supposedly got trampled. I think that turned out to be a scam, but people were more than willing to believe it!

You know that you also have Costco in China? I can’t remember what the company is called, but I went to one in Beijing. Let’s hope they have the same enlightened attitudes towards their workers that Costco in the States does…

August 3, 2005 @ 12:21 am | Comment

i bet we can see more funny pics from these retail giants in the coming days (like naked customers got things free in a northern european nation) i will take my dc to take funny pics when i have chance to visit it.

talking aobut business ehtics, soon the battle of media will be employed by competitors to attack each other’s wrong-doings in this field, wal-mart no exception for sure

August 3, 2005 @ 12:31 am | Comment

Gordon, I thought you might notice that. I reckon I’m just encouraging him, but it was worth a try.

In other news, I just found out my (Chinese) landlord is reading my blog. Gulp. I’ve bagged on my apartment a bit in there.

I always knew not blogging anonymously was a risk for my work. But for my apartment? On the other hand, he neither evicted me, nor offered me a rent reduction (although he did ask me to consider switching to paying in RMB instead of dollars), so maybe it’s all par for the course.

August 3, 2005 @ 12:32 am | Comment

Hmmm. Okay, so first, to continue scatology, there are lots of Americans that go outside – but they’re camping in the wilderness. Or in west virginia, where in the mountains outside of the towns people tend to have outhouses. I have never once seen human fecal matter on the streets of any city in the states. You get arrested very, very quickly. Bingfeng you sometimes seem to be trying to elicit a rise out of people by saying things like this. Like the gunshots? I’ve never heard gunshots either, out of context ( I mean, besides shooting them myself or being in the woods during hunting season). What kind of life do you lead!? One that only lets you see the things that very few others see, apparently.

Oh, and BF – that overwhelming smell in the US toilets? It’s probably disinfectant. We use it in the states, it’s required by law. If it’s not disinfectant and you’ve truly been to a smellier toilet in the US than the ones in China, then again, where are you going?

Anyway, I’ve never seen human fecal matter on the streets of Beijing, Taiyuan, Datong or Shenyang either.

In England, people piss fricking EVERYWHERE at night when they are drinking. It’s gross. 11:00 pm is a dirty, dirty, dangerous time.

Look – China still doesn’t have water that you can drink from the tap, and the toilets are nasty. So what? It’s unpleasant and I’d rather sit in an outhouse in West Virginia or New Mexico than go to the loo in many places in China (fortunately those pay toilets really do a MUCH better job of being clean – now if they could only be forced to use disinfectant) but that’s just because China is still poor. When there’s a burgeoning middle class that will change, people will start demanding better things and everything will get more expensive and everything will be cleaner.

BTW – who here HASN’T peed off the Great Wall? I went to a rave at simatai (I think it was at simatai…) and every guy in my group peed off the Great Wall, Chinese and Foreigner alike.

August 3, 2005 @ 12:38 am | Comment

“like naked customers got things free in a northern european nation”

Ah yes, those crazy naked northern europeans. bless them. Nudity is natural, and lest we forget, the Germans and the Swedes are there to remind us.

August 3, 2005 @ 12:40 am | Comment

I think the “naked Europeans” were Austrians who got admitted to a museum free if they came nude or in bathing suits.

As for Walmart, it is already very much a campaign issue in the States. There’s an article about it in today’s Salon – it’s subscription but I think you can access most articles with a day pass: go to http://www.salon.com

August 3, 2005 @ 12:43 am | Comment

What kind of life do you lead!? One that only lets you see the things that very few others see, apparently.

——————

laowai,

i like this one, maybe people like Gordon like it too ๐Ÿ™‚

but, have you ever heard “one-sided profoundity” (pian mian de shen ke)

August 3, 2005 @ 12:55 am | Comment

WIll,

How did you find out that your landlord was reading your blog and do you know how he found it?

August 3, 2005 @ 1:00 am | Comment

“i like this one, maybe people like Gordon like it too ๐Ÿ™‚

but, have you ever heard “one-sided profoundity” (pian mian de shen ke)”

BF, really sorry, but I’m not sure what you’re talking about. “one” refers to the life you lead, yes? and “it” refers to … Gordon’s life?

One sided profoundness… is that like saying that something isn’t profound if it is one-sided? Is that the foil you try to play for us Duckies here?

Just a pet peeve of mine – you don’t need a comma after a “but”. you can put it after “however” but not “but”.

August 3, 2005 @ 1:01 am | Comment

Oh, and BF – that overwhelming smell in the US toilets? It’s probably disinfectant. We use it in the states, it’s required by law.

———–

somebody tells that might be the reason the little dancing girl, a relative of mine, refuses to get into american swimming pools

i am sure the smell is not from disinfectant. anyway, let it be, it’s out of our control at the moment. north korea nuke talk is more important.

August 3, 2005 @ 1:03 am | Comment

Bingfeng, I read a lot. And of course I had to visit Beijing Costco!

August 3, 2005 @ 1:07 am | Comment

I love this thread! Now pardon me for a few minutes, while I sit for a while and think about the Pope.
Sincerely yours,
Martin Luther

August 3, 2005 @ 1:08 am | Comment

One sided profoundness ……..

Will’s landlord reads Will’s blog. a very rare case that doesn’t happen to most of us, HOWEVER, it tells us an universal truth – a blog can be read by everybody in this planet with an access to internet

similarly, (do i need a comma here, laowai laoshi? sorry lao laoshi), sh*ts in an american street, not matter how rare it is, reminds us that chinese and the americans are not that different as somebody suggested

August 3, 2005 @ 1:11 am | Comment

time for teabreak:

http://tinyurl.com/7laza

August 3, 2005 @ 1:20 am | Comment

Oh god, BF, I’m not trying to say that Americans and Chinese are somehow fundamentally different. But I think you know that I don’t try to say that.

Yes, using the comma after “similarly” is correct.

Hope you didn’t mind me pointing that out about the grammar, but I notice that just about every Chinese friend I have makes that mistake, so it must be systematically taught or something. It drives me up the wall.

August 3, 2005 @ 1:21 am | Comment

is that you, Gordon?

http://tinyurl.com/8fm8d

August 3, 2005 @ 1:22 am | Comment

Bingfeng, I realized that fact in January, 1996 when my neighbors discovered my “Report from Singapore” proto-blog in which I referred to their teenage daughters as “sullen”. Oops. (They were gracious about it.)

Gordon: I am in the middle of renewing my lease, and the landlord and I have been e-mailing. You know my personal e-mail address. A chipmunk could make the connection. Plus, if he Googles “Blue Castle Beijing”, which he might well do if sizing up the rental market from his current home in the US, my (not anonymous) blog entries are returns 17 and 18.

One day, I swear, it’ll all come back to haunt me.

August 3, 2005 @ 1:24 am | Comment

in chinese textbooks:

“how are you?

fine. and you?”

so every chinese will say the same thing when you ask “how are you?”

“fine. ………………. AND YOU?”

August 3, 2005 @ 1:25 am | Comment

Oh god, BF, I’m not trying to say that Americans and Chinese are somehow fundamentally different. But I think you know that I don’t try to say that.

————–

somebody has suggested that – either chinese are worse or chinese are better. in my opinion, both are BS.

August 3, 2005 @ 1:27 am | Comment

Oh, also, in the 27 years I lived in the US –in San Francisco no less, which has an enormous homeless population– I never saw anyone take a dump in the street. I did, however, see monumental piles of dogshit. I also never saw a gunfight, although I did see a guy running across the street with a gun once.

(Per the American street violence stereotype: I used to work assignment desk at a TV news station in SF and sit at a desk with four police scanners. You’d be amazed how little actually happens in a major metropolitan area. I used to pray for goddamned shoot-outs.)

August 3, 2005 @ 1:29 am | Comment

You America and you puncuate, you don’t understand China, China puncuate this way, on and on, many comma all connect, many thought run together, as we all know China wrote first, China invent paper, how can you say about China punctuate?
It only need half of brain to write in English, it take whole part of brain to write Chinese, why we should use comma like half brain English? Many word can be without comma, whole brain understand more than half English brain who shit in America city.
(snicker…sorry, just feeling silly today… ๐Ÿ™‚

August 3, 2005 @ 1:29 am | Comment

Yes Bingfeng, I believe you have caught me. My first speeding ticket on the motorcycle.

Funny thing (not really funny) is that when I get back to the States I have to pay a lot of money to get my license back thanks to an old speeding ticket on the crotch rocket that I had forgotten about.

August 3, 2005 @ 1:34 am | Comment

It only need half of brain to write in English, it take whole part of brain to write Chinese, why we should use comma like half brain English? Many word can be without comma, whole brain understand more than half English brain who shit in America city.

——————

this part doesn’t sound like a chinglish

you need more practice, Ivan

btw, have you found the joke about chinese leader at teahouse?

August 3, 2005 @ 1:36 am | Comment

Yes Bingfeng, I believe you have caught me. My first speeding ticket on the motorcycle.

Funny thing (not really funny) is that when I get back to the States I have to pay a lot of money to get my license back thanks to an old speeding ticket on the crotch rocket that I had forgotten about.

Posted by Gordon at August 3, 2005 01:34 AM

————

i found another pic of you before that speeding incident:

http://www.funnypictures1.com/pics/02/19.php

(just kidding you buddy ๐Ÿ™‚

August 3, 2005 @ 1:39 am | Comment

Well, I can confirm Bingfengs complaint about the gunshots, although not to the point of keeping me awake for an entire night.

I had a mild car accident in downtown Indianapolis one evening and while we were all sitting on the curb waiting for the police to arrive and file a report, we were treated to a gang shootout a few streets over. When the cop arrived, he apologized for taking so long and confirmed the shootout.

Hell, for that matter, I’ve been shot twice. Once by an idiot and once for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I even had some 50 year old guy pull over, walk up to the passenger side door of my car and put a .9mm between my Buddy’s eyes because I gave him a brake-check for tailgating me. (that was a long story).

August 3, 2005 @ 1:42 am | Comment

to Gordon:

http://www.funnypictures1.com/pics/01/16.php

August 3, 2005 @ 1:46 am | Comment

Hey bingfeng,
Thanks for the tip. I never claimed to be fluent in Chinglish – only intermediate. ๐Ÿ™‚
By the way, bingfeng, you actually made me laugh when you wrote (earlier on this thread) that you’ll wait while I keep looking for Da Shan in my toilet. Hey man, maybe there’s some hope for you after all! ๐Ÿ™‚
Anyway, all I know about Chinglish (at my intermediate level) are the following rules:
1. Omit all plurals
2. Omit all tenses. Everything happens in the present tense.
3. Always say “always”
4. Always reverse the word order of questions
5. Always sound accusatory, as often as possible
6. Preface all debatable statements with the phrase “as we all know”
7. Abolish both genders
8. Preface every statement of possible action with “you can” and imply that it is really an order which cannot be refused
9. Abolish all ambiguous or negotiable qualifications like “some” or “many” or “often” or “few” or “seldom”, and replace them with “All” and “Always” and “never”
10. Always remember that the English language was invented by the Chinese Communist Party and their designated experts.
Now bingfeng, my friend, I await your further instructions in expert Chinglish… ๐Ÿ™‚

August 3, 2005 @ 1:46 am | Comment

Bingfeng,

THAT WAS HILARIOUS!

August 3, 2005 @ 1:54 am | Comment

Gordon, you have got to move to a better neighborhood. Maybe I spent too much time in SF’s cushy suburbs, but you get the prize as the only person I have actually met who has taken a bullet.

I haven’t even been in a fight since junior high school.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:03 am | Comment

Hmmmm, another intellectually-challenging open thread. Perhaps we should invite AM to come here and raise the tone a little bit and help us concentrate on the more mature and serious issues!

I’m still in shock that I’ve just worked my way through 77 dump-comments…..it’s going to be a long day…I can feel it.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:11 am | Comment

My Chinglish translation of the first paragraphs of America’s Declaration of Independence:

As we all know, in the World, revolution happen many time. But how we can say this to all the Human?
As we all know, the Human is all same except for class conflict, as we know, one class take place of other class after many conflict. And America should no criticize China Human Right, America no better than China.
As we all know, the God who is very hegemonic America God, he say all the Human have equal right but we know God just want American hegemony. And on those so called Human Right are life, liberty and the pursuit of happy. But how can you American God be happy when you God only want to interfere in Taiwan?
“And to secure these ends, governments are instituted among men (I am copying from what the American hegemonist Thomas Jefferson wrote) deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
But Thomas Jefferson does not understand China. How you can have consent of governed, until China develops economically?
When China people get more money like America, then maybe China can talk about Human Right.

(Just like the filthy rich George Bush and Dick Cheney care about Human Rights, of course. Oh yes, all China needs is MORE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, and THEN China can become more democratic. What, just like rich Americans like Bush and Cheney love democracy?………)
Seriously, that’s why I do NOT buy the CCP line about how China needs more “economic development” before it will be ready for democracy.
Being rich does NOT make anyone more democratic……….

August 3, 2005 @ 2:11 am | Comment

As expected, the fat lady has finally sung on the Unical deal. Sour grapes from the CNOOC board: (SCMP)
————————————————–
CNOOC pulls out of running for Unocal

Citing “regrettable and unjustified” political opposition in the United States, mainland oil company CNOOC yesterday formally withdrew its takeover bid for Unocal.

The move ends an eight-month quest for control of America’s ninth-largest oil firm and paves the way for Chevron’s rival US$17.3 billion offer to be accepted by Unocal shareholders.

“The unprecedented political opposition that followed the announcement of our proposed transaction, attempting to replace or amend the CFIUS process … was regrettable and unjustified.”
————————————————–

August 3, 2005 @ 2:19 am | Comment

enough of the foolishness!

bingfeng, gordon, ivan, will, AM, you are all OUT

laowai, lisa, martyn, jing, bing, lin, richard, you are all IN

now the real real intellectually-challenging debate begins

August 3, 2005 @ 2:22 am | Comment

bingfeng,
Alright, you want an “intellectually challenging debate?”
You’ll get one from me. Tell me, you Chinese Communist, how do you reconcile the determinist 19th century ontology of Marx and Engels with the two-hole experiment of Heisenberg, which rendered the entire deterministic Marxist paradigm moribund and rendundant?
(I am assuming, bingfeng, that you are a Communist.)
How can you give Marx ANY credit (except for some residual credit for his partially good intentions) after 20th century physics has demolished the entire 19th century deterministic paradigm of Marx? How can you be a Communist when modern science has demonstrated that consciousness is NOT determined by any material base?
Well, you ASKED for an “intellectually challenging debate”, so here you go! ๐Ÿ™‚

August 3, 2005 @ 2:28 am | Comment

The CNOOC bid wasn’t that great to begin with for reasons I’ve exponded on previously.

Also when China starts to allow foreign companies to hold majority stakes in CNOOC – type companies then maybe the political oppoition in the US will lessen. As it stands it is incredibly difficult to even enter into a small scale resource deal here without getting screwed six ways from Sunday… and that is just at the exploration stage.

The stories I could tell would turn your hair red.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:34 am | Comment

is Fukuyama another determinist? how about G.W. Bush?

talking aobut heisenberg, it’s very interesting that somebody reveals there is no such a thing called “absolute truth”

i am not a CCP member (too young to be included in that club) and Marxism no longer rules china

August 3, 2005 @ 2:36 am | Comment

“Also when China starts to allow foreign companies to hold majority stakes in CNOOC – type companies then maybe the political oppoition in the US will lessen. ”

China treats all other foreign companies the same in terms of their investments in China and it doesn’t discriminate one from the others.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:37 am | Comment

Hold onto your hats: (SCMP)
————————————————–
Typhoons to batter China in August: meteorologists

Two to three typhoons will batter the mainland this month, meteorologists warned on Wednesday just weeks after Typhoon Haitang left 17 dead and a trail of destruction in its wake.

Five to six tropical cyclones or typhoons would form at the northwestern Pacific and South China Sea in August with several expected to land in southeast China.

The No. 9 tropical cyclone Matsa formed Sunday to the east of the Philippines and was moving towards the mainlandโ€™s southeastern coast at a speed of 20 kilometres per hour.
————————————————–

August 3, 2005 @ 2:45 am | Comment

bingfeng,
Obviously you have no idea what I was talking about, when I mentioned Heisenberg and late modern physics.
It’s typical of putative “intellectuals” of China, like you bingfeng. You put on a good pretense of being “scholars” but as soon as you’re confronted with something you don’t know, you run away and obfuscate and avoid the confrontation.
I remember what the English philosopher, Bertrand Russell (who visited China around the 1920s) said about the “Chinese intellectuals” he met – the same kind as Mao and Chou En Lai were – he said:
“They are a melange of imposters, frauds and third-raters”
All you putative Chinese “intellectuals” know how to do is to plagiarize and copy things which you don’t understand, and to follow the party line, and to complain histrionically about how most Chinese are not as “educated” as you are. And the reason why most Chinese are not as “educated” as most Chinese “intellectuals” are, is because the CCP’s way of keeping power is to keep the people ignorant – just like all of the rulers of China have done since the First Emperor.
And so you lower the standards of intellectual life in China, and you Chinese “scholars” are above the masses only because you keep them even more ignorant than you are.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:50 am | Comment

Bing, I think GMWB’s point is that Chinese state industries like the Oil industry does not welcome foreign companies. China, rightly or wrongly, feels that the oil industry comes under the mantle of national security.

GMWB is just saying that if the buying of oil companies was reciprocal then Americans might not make such a fuss about it.

Anyway, I know what GMWB does for a living and, trust me, he knows about this subject. He isn’t joking when he says that he has stories that would turn my hair even redder. I’ve heard a lot of them.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:56 am | Comment

I note that Bingfeng ruled himself “Out” already, Ivan. Thus grouping himself in such mouth-breathing company as you, me, Gordon, AM etc.

Anyway, it may be that determinism in a political (rather than physical) sense can be reconciled with universe of probability posited by Heisenberg. After all, in a truly communist society, many things clearly exist in an uncertain state: food, consumer goods, heat, information, worker motivation, etc. As we all know, the clear liquid in that bottle is only a probabilistic amalgam of vodka and wood alcohol until you measure it by swilling some.

Yep, I’m still squarely in mouth-breather class. Sigh.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:57 am | Comment

And on that note I’m off to the gym…

August 3, 2005 @ 2:58 am | Comment

Martyn: Thanks very much for the link – re: China’s military spending. It’s been very hectic at work today but I’ll read tonight and search the web for some comparison data.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:59 am | Comment

Hey Will,
Two things,
1. I don’t know what you mean by calling me and you “mouth breathers”, but I like the sound of it
2. About Heisenberg, I am privy to some letters he wrote to a friend of mine, and I can tell you that many people misunderstood what he meant by “probability.” Heisenberg did not believe in any quasi-determinism based on probability.
Heisenberg spoke of “probabillity” as a kind of shorthand – but I can tell you, very personally, that I know that Heisenberg was freaked out by what he discovered, about how essentially free and unpredictable the material (and spiritual) universe is.
Hm, has bingfeng given up on discussing Heisenberg with me? I suppose what I have written is not sufficiently “intellectually challenging…” for him…… ๐Ÿ™‚

August 3, 2005 @ 3:06 am | Comment

Couldn’t help but concurring with views about resource industry and national security. In fact all geological data in China is considered national secrets – don’t know why. However, rumour says it that there are plenty of data floating in the black market, particularly via Russia. You just have to know the right person, so to speak.

August 3, 2005 @ 3:08 am | Comment

Enough of intellectual challenges. Ivan the theoretical physicist is out, and Ivan the Scatologist is back in!
Singing, from the South Park episode about Mr Hankey:
“Mr Hankey, the Christmas Poo!
He loves me, I love you!
Mr Hankey loves you too!
Even if you’re a Jew!”
Oh and what were the lines from the South Park song, “The Poo of the Universe?” ….. ๐Ÿ™‚

August 3, 2005 @ 3:12 am | Comment

That photo of the fortune cookie reminded me of this
song parody
 by Weird Al Yankovich.

(no offense meant)

By the way, you can right click and “save as” to save it to your computer.

August 3, 2005 @ 3:19 am | Comment

Oh and now more seriously again, about quantum physics, if anyone here is interested, let me refer you to the chapter about “Tweedledee and Tweedledum” in Lewis Carroll’s “Alice Through The Looking Glass.”
Tweedledee and Tweedledum behave EXACTLY like subatomic particles – and it is no accident. Lewis Carroll assiduously studied the new developments in physics – when he was writing in the late 1800s – and in his essay, “Dynamics of a Parti-Cle” (1865) Lewis Carroll wrote:
“Moment is the product of mass into velocity.”
E=MC squared!
He wrote that in 1865, forty years before Einstein proved it. Men of poetry and imagination come before men of practical science…. ๐Ÿ™‚

August 3, 2005 @ 3:19 am | Comment

Ivan: Mouthbreathing = of low intelligence and sloped forehead. Meant to invoke an image of a troglodyte, hayseed or other mentally impaired soul. The kind of person who mouths the words when they read “Dick and Jane” books.

Offered in jest, of course. Strictly no mouthbreathing on this forum. Ahem.

PS: I have freely mixed Heisenberg and Schrodinger in my lowbrow humor above. Apologies to any QM purists who may be reading.

August 3, 2005 @ 3:19 am | Comment

Hey Will,
Thanks for explaining. And yes I am just as troglodytic and as stupid as you are.
Now I will set aside my books by Heisenberg and Schroedinger et al, and Owen Barfield (whose unorthodox ontology has influenced me considerably) and now I will study my Little Red Book of Mao’s sayings.
Oh and then watch some South Park videos, and Beavis and Butthead. I’ve been wondering how much Beavis might enjoy this thread.
“I AM CORNHOLIO! I NEED TEEPEE FOR MY BUNGHOLE!” ๐Ÿ™‚

August 3, 2005 @ 3:26 am | Comment

“When in Rome, do as the Romans”.

When I sudied in Shanghai. There was a guy in my class who realy took this slogan to heart, one morning showing up in class wearing a brand new pyjama.

August 3, 2005 @ 3:26 am | Comment

Fat Cat, no problem with the link. Definitely the best article on the subject that I’ve read.

Speaking of state secrets, I once met a North Korean guy on a train in China in the early 90’s. He was a student in Beijing like me. What the hell do you say to a North Korean?

Being English, I obviously talked about the weather and commented that North Korean winters must be quite dreadful–a nice safe topic I thought–the guy just looked at me tight-lipped. ‘How rude” I remember thinking.

Anyway, afterwards his Chinese classmates told me that he wouldn’t ever tell me what the weather in North Korea was like in case I was an America spy and was helping to plan an attack on the hermit state! The weather is considered a state secret.

What a loony.

August 3, 2005 @ 3:33 am | Comment

Good grief, 1,113 coal miners killed in the first 3 months of this year–up 21% from 2004. It just gets worse and worse.
(From AFP):
————————————————–
A gas leak at Xingfa Coal Mine in Wenshu township, Henan province killed 24 miners, the official Xinhua News Agency said on Wednesday. The private mine was operating illegally when the accident happened.

Chinaโ€™s mines are the worldโ€™s deadliest, with thousands of workers killed each year in fires, floods and explosions. Lack of safety equipment and lax safety rules are often the main causes.

Accidents killed 1,113 coal miners in the first three months of this year โ€” up almost 21 percent from the same period in 2004, according to the government.
————————————————–

August 3, 2005 @ 3:54 am | Comment

Oh, forgot to mention…those are GOVERNMENT figures. If that’s not bad enough, just imagine what the real figures might be.

August 3, 2005 @ 3:56 am | Comment

And the Chinese are consulting with Pakistan on their coal mining industry…

Honestly, I stand in awe of many Chinese achievements in arts, letters and the sciences. Honestly. But the coal mining industry is not among them.

August 3, 2005 @ 4:42 am | Comment

Just to go back to the public toilet issue, I have heard from numerous women, but never checked myself, that womens public toilets are far, far more hideous than mens. On many occasions different foreign women have told me it resembles an abattoir. Anybody else heard or seen this?

August 3, 2005 @ 5:25 am | Comment

bingfeng,
Obviously you have no idea what I was talking about, when I mentioned Heisenberg and late modern physics.
It’s typical of putative “intellectuals” of China, like you bingfeng. You put on a good pretense of being “scholars” but as soon as you’re confronted with something you don’t know, you run away and obfuscate and avoid the confrontation.

—————–

it seems that my absence makes you feel intellectually superior.

you know what, ivan, laowais like you are always a laughingstock in my gathering with chinese friends.

tell me what’s the philosophical implications of heisenberg’s “uncertainty principle”, and how fukuyama is related with hegel

thank you, Ivan the authentic intellectual

August 3, 2005 @ 7:02 am | Comment

Oh, forgot to mention…those are GOVERNMENT figures. If that’s not bad enough, just imagine what the real figures might be.

Posted by Martyn at August 3, 2005 03:56 AM

————

Martyn the Chinese linguist:

here is an interesting article (chinese) i read last week, i recommend it to you.

August 3, 2005 @ 7:07 am | Comment

I am worried:
http://tinyurl.com/bsjau

Short exerpt:
“A paper published in July in the journal Nature detailed the genomics of H5N1 isolated in samples taken in 2005 from Qinghai and Guangdong as well as Hunan and Yunnan.

Dr Guan Yi, a University of Hong Kong scientist, told the media that, soon after the Nature paper was published, the mainland authorities accused him of stealing state secrets.

So China considers H5N1 a state secret – the Qinghai isolates have been shown to be very virulent – perhaps because people have already been infected?”

August 3, 2005 @ 7:13 am | Comment

ooooops

http://tinyurl.com/ahbvt

August 3, 2005 @ 7:23 am | Comment

Regarding the talk about the quality of scholarship in China, I personally agree that there are a lot of things deserve criticizing in Chinese education system. But using knowing of โ€œHeisenbergโ€ as benchmark of the quality of scholarship?

Frankly, I donโ€™t know what โ€œHeisenbergโ€ theory is. But I do know some other products of American intellectuals, โ€œDomino Theoryโ€ in the cold war, โ€œChina Collapse Theoryโ€ and โ€œChina Threaten the World Theoryโ€ now. Are those theories based on this โ€œHeisenbergโ€ stuff.

BTW, I have no intention to put down the quality of American scholarship in general.

August 3, 2005 @ 9:20 am | Comment

Hey, nobody said American scholarship was perfect.

But given America’s ability to avoid killing large swaths of its entire population (among other superhuman feats seemingly outside of China’s grasp), I’d say that all things considered, American scholarship has been of far higher quality (did I mention we don’t regularly imprison or kill our scholars?)

August 3, 2005 @ 10:15 am | Comment

Er, sorry I wasn’t available to elevate the tone. I had to go to sleep. Pacific Standard Time, you know…

Re: Heisenberger’s cat, I have a cat on my lap RIGHT NOW!

August 3, 2005 @ 10:25 am | Comment

Okay, I know you guys were talking about that OTHER cat. Schrodingers. But mine is Heisenberg’s because she sometimes exists in a quantum state.

August 3, 2005 @ 10:34 am | Comment

My friends cat has the same problem, I think. Is that commen among cats?

August 3, 2005 @ 10:40 am | Comment

LW, then please don’t come to the States to study.

Anyway, all the theories you mention were politics, not academics. Or at least not any more academic than something like the “Peaceful rise” theory or the “Three represents.” All of these (the U.S. ones included, of course) are BS, and none of them is scholarship.

August 3, 2005 @ 10:48 am | Comment

Oh, my super super bad. I thought you said at the end that you DID mean to put american scholarship.

You’re welcome to come to the states.

But all the other theories mentioned (except the physics ones) are still BS

August 3, 2005 @ 10:49 am | Comment

No cat pundits around anymore?
I for my part don’t like Schrรถdinger that much. What a sadist. Poor cat.

Problem with my friend’s cat is: Some times she doesn’t seem to notice you at all on other ocasions .. Autsch.

August 3, 2005 @ 11:20 am | Comment

And don’t tell me someting about scientific progress and the price you have to pay. That Schrรถdinger guy was a sadist, only wanted to show off. No need to do it.

August 3, 2005 @ 11:35 am | Comment

Just joined PETA.

Don’t know what it is but shortly after they knocked on my door yesterday I felt this big sympathy towards animals.
Anyway, the soya saussages, they gave me as a present, were delicious.

August 3, 2005 @ 11:46 am | Comment

PETA= People Eating Tasty Animals. Or at least that’s the student group at Bard College in NY.

I love your spelling, shulan. It’s so german. Autsch?! Fantastische! Don’t stop. Makes me think outside the box.

August 3, 2005 @ 12:06 pm | Comment

Laowai,

I believe that you can read English properly. Why did you read: “BTW, I have no intention to put down the quality of American scholarship in general”?

August 3, 2005 @ 1:02 pm | Comment

Also, I never even said that China Collapse Theoryโ€ and โ€œChina Threaten the World Theoryโ€ are SHUBBY products of American intellectuals. I just said that those are products of some American intellectuals.

For those believers of these theories, why should you felt that I was belittling some American intellectuals instead making you feel proud about them.

August 3, 2005 @ 1:20 pm | Comment

I mean SHABBY instead SHUBBY. Sorry about the mistake.

August 3, 2005 @ 1:34 pm | Comment

Talk about PETA, what is the deal with people killing others and store their bodies in the refridgrator? On top of that, they cook the human flesh and eat them? How gross can that be?

Can anyone from the environment who are familiar with the phenomena explain what level of civilization have you all reached? Are we behind on this again?

August 3, 2005 @ 2:14 pm | Comment

LW,

Misread it.

no worries.

I would disagree that the domino theory etc. are works of intellectuals though. Intellectuals have to think to be intellectuals, and the Domino theory didn’t even stand up to the conservative CIA’s analysis. It was a “theory” as much as the Three Represents is a “theory”. That is to say, it isn’t.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:15 pm | Comment

what’s with all this macho my intellect is bigger than yours rubbish??
physics, quantum or otherwise, is all very well I’m sure, in it’s place. but familiarity with the personal writings of some German nuclear johnny is no way for anyone to claim bragging rights for their brain cells.
come back with some thoughts on how to play Shane Warne’s straight one and we’ll all be impressed.

in the meantime, Ivan you got played big time by Bingfeng up there!

August 3, 2005 @ 2:23 pm | Comment

I was referring to the Heisenberg stuff earlier, by the way.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:24 pm | Comment

more contemporaneously, I’m not sure that the phrase “intellectuals” translates that well from the chinese to english.
“intellectuals” have had certain historical (both long and short term) roles in china — a class apart, almost — that I do not think has been so pronounced in western europe and now the US.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:28 pm | Comment

Not strictly true, even now. Take a look at Oxbridge nowadays – it IS still another class, basically, although not necessarily an economic one. Just a social class.

But anyway, historically speaking, people like Hume and Descartes and Kierkegaarde all had sponsors. Hume had to alter his conclusion to discourse on thinking because his sponsor didn’t like it.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:43 pm | Comment

I suppose I mean something a bit different here by class, I should better have said “segment” or “pigeon-hole” of/in society.
or rather, intellectuals in china seem to me to have had more of a role to play, or seem to have been expected to play a certain role, than has ever been the case in the west.

August 3, 2005 @ 2:52 pm | Comment

A new Great Hall is now in session up above.

August 3, 2005 @ 5:38 pm | Comment

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