Archive for the 'china' Category


Of Traitors, Terrorists and Secessionists and the Economy: 10 Questions for Obama and McCain

I took a unwanted hiatus from writing this blog for three weeks and upon my return I see that Obama is squarely ahead in the polls.  My feeling about this turn in events is so incredibly ambivalent, I’m not sure what to write.  Frankly, my real wish is to go back to 2000 and to see the true maverick McCain reemerge at some point during this campaign. That sadly is not to be.  Instead, the new conservative/fundamentalist McCain has turned off independent minded voters including Colin Powell but I find it equally difficult to embrace Obama as well. So I am stuck here ruminating about this election as I watch the death throes of the failed Bush presidency exert even more pain on this country. The economy is still tanking albeit not at the perilous rates of the past couple of weeks and everybody is trying to catch their breath.  Both candidates are doing their best to avert attention from the goings on hoping that Americans don’t wise up and start asking some truly tough questions.  Here are just are my ten questions the ones that “Joe the Plumber” missed asking:

1. It appears that Obama was palling around with terrorists but Sarah Palin has a history of partying out with secessionists while saying “God bless” to them at their conventions.  Yet, does anybody care in the mainstream media care or can they be bothered to bring this topic up with her? I don’t know, if you hang around people who hate the US and want to secede from the mainland, well, in my book, that’s just not cool. And to me, that is more important than focusing on whether or no she can see Russia from her backdoor.  All the secessionists want to do is keep the oil for themselves and give every Alaskan a small fortune for just living in that arctic wasteland.  Who do they think they are?  Saudi princes? Don’t they know that free rides are the province of Washington DC and lobbyists?

2. When billions of dollars are lost on Wall Street and none of theses financial troubles are reflected in past quarterly corporate statements does anybody go to jail?

3. Does anybody now know doubt that the precipitous rise in gas prices was driven solely by speculators and all at the expense of the American consumer?  Shouldn’t markets be driven by long term investment rather than short term gain?  What type of behavior are we driving here with the current tax code?

4. Should we continue to give loans to people who sign mortgage paperwork without knowing if they have a fixed or adjustable rate mortgage?  Can’t there be a legal requirement to state this more clearly?  And rather than give these idiots a bail out can’t we just move them to reasonable fix rate mortgage?  Oh yeah, I forogt without the ARM they couldn’t afford the monthly nut in the first place so never mind.

5. Why the hell would Republicans be interested in bringing to the floor a bill that gives corporations a break on their overseas investments?  We haven’t shipped enough American jobs overseas over the past decade? Can anybody question the short-sighted greedy wisdom of these stupid robber barons? How about a tax break for companies keeping manufacturing jobs here?  You know like the 10% funding the Chinese gave their factory owners over the past decade?  Nobody talks about that subsidy do they now? Not as long as we get cheap Chinese crap created by a multitude of dirty coal-powered plants.

6. Drill, baby drill? Hey morons, that newly drilled American oil is still going to be pegged to the market price of OPEC oil so how does that help save me money at the pump?  Plus, there’s not enough oil in the US to make a dent in the overall world market.  We’re like a crack baby when it comes to oil and its time to kick the habit and embrace other technologies including nuclear. Here’s an idea:  let the USA develop new energy technology and we sell it to the rest of the world. Then we don’t have to worry about the Middle East and Russia can go to hell with their oil. And just maybe we’ll have a positive impact on the global warming trend before we are all truly screwed.

7. Socialism sucks but is this new American economy truly reflective of free market capitalism? We all know the answer to that question and that’s without a course in macroeconomics.  After the bailouts how do we get back on track?  And does more profit necessarily mean more American jobs?

8.  Will anybody ever investigate the story of the WMDs in Iraq and our failed intelligence efforts? Or was the intelligence always there but instead was the intelligence actually missing in the Bush White House? Better yet, what the hell truly happened  on 9/11 and why is Osama Bin Laden still free?  How flawed is our current Pakistan foreign policy that we are not even allowed to take a shot at this prick? Are we even looking or do we need him to justify the hundreds of billions spent on defense?

8. After the hundreds of billions, no wait, make that several trillion dollars,  that were spent to bailout out our banking system and to bring democracy to Iraq is 70 billion dollars for bringing health care to all Americans too much to ask for?  Oh, yeah I forgot, that nagging socialism claim.

10. And finally, who did Lehman Brothers hire as their lobbyist firm in Washington?  With all of the hundreds of billions flying about for financial bailouts those guys truly really suck and dropped the ball. Maybe McCain picked them up to run his campagin with his other lobbyist friends.

With Americans both angry and scared who best to trust, the cool smooth talking Obama or the often angry, cranky old guy, McCain? My guess, barring a complete Obama collapse, is the cool reassuring guy.  I’m not convinced that is necessarily a good thing.

By the way have you noticed that with Obama firmly in the lead Hillary is suddenly more involved in his campaign? No sense in being irrelevent for the next four years she must be figuring.


Boycott the Beijing Olympics and NBC: Free China!

What do you get when you combine a communist state with unbridled capitalism? You get a fascist’s state of mind, of course. Why bring this up at this time? Well, I think for the time being I have exhausted my rants regarding the Creationists movement and because we are rapidly approaching the start of yet another Olympiad, I figure it’s time for me to chime in on this auspicious event. The pageantry of the Olympics is a Chinese homage to their ruthless march to the top of the world economic food chain, a grand spectacle that was fueled by the callous deaths of millions of Chinese laborers and the ruined careers of millions of American workers, engineered by both callous communist party officials and greedy and stupid American CEOs.

In the nineties, a curious blend of communist backed entrepreneurialism began to take hold in China, fueled and abetted by the voracious appetite of American CEOs for a cheap and reliable foreign labor source. What better way to improving corporate productivity than to pay a fraction for that labor and China had plenty of cheap bodies for hire? A sick Six Sigma corporate mentality of looking at the American labor pool as a waste rather than as a resource further fed this destructive mentality as we outsourced American jobs, pensions, technology and pollution to China for what will amount to be some chump change. As they tour the latest ISO 9000 level Chinese factories the American executives conveniently ignore the shady underworld of subcontractors in the Chinese countryside, where the labor is subjected to substandard working conditions the likes of which belong in Sinclair Lewis novel. Imagine factories where workers do arc welding without protective eye goggles or spray paint shiny new air compressors without the benefits of the simplest air mask and where even the most basic sanitation is lacking. Why? Because it is cheaper, so you could cut the cost of that compressor by a nickel and there are ten others to replace the one guy with the burnt-out eyes or lungs who fell from the assembly-line.

I saw this destructive Wal-Mart mentality first hand. Every distributor began to push American manufacturers for better pricing and that became synonymous with outsourcing to China. I literally had manufacturers crying on the phone to me that they would have to close their American factories, fire their workers and partner with a Chinese manufacturer. That also meant sharing with the Chinese their tooling and industrial secrets and everybody knew how the Chinese manufacturers felt about honoring intellectual property. There is no such thing! I quit in disgust, not so much out of any great moral obligation, but because I personally couldn’t stomach watching entire industries being savaged by this sick mentality.

There’s an old Clash song, called death or Glory, from London Calling that had a line about “he who !@%#$ nuns later joins the church”. In short, I couldn’t continue to be a tool, especially when I knew those so-called great IT and service jobs that were being created to replace our lost manufacturing jobs -you remember that crap about the US going from a manufacturing economy to a service economy- were now being outsourced to India! Every economist was saying we didn’t want to fall into that European trap of protecting jobs with tariffs. Well, the Europeans have a more leisurely lifestyle, live longer and get a month off while our women are literally forced to hold down a job and we sit at home feeling guilty if we take our stinking two week vacation during the course of the year because it’s going to make the company less competitive in the world economy. Is it me or am I missing something here?

So, if you think this callous Chinese and corporate America behavior doesn’t impact you, well, think again. It impacts the manufacturing jobs that are no longer based in the US to the cost of gas at the pump, to the quality of the air you breathe. And now that the housing boom is in a perpetual death spiral don’t you think that negative trade balance is finally going to pose a drag on the American economy? Can we continue to afford to send billions of our dollars to both China and OPEC?
We basically put them in business with our shortsighted Wal-Mart outsourcing mentality and now we compete with the Chinese for food, oil and other basic resources. Free trade advocates would say you got it wrong, that we are growing large new markets for our products to sell into. What the hell do we export to China other than raw materials, some planes, our garbage (literally), food, and until recently our crappy high risk mortgage paper? Okay, maybe the occasional designer bag, no wait a minute, they make those over there, right?

Wow, would our CEOs really sell us out like that? If they can make millions or billions of dollars in terms of their own personal payouts, you bet they would sell us out and their mothers too! No, American manufacturers crawl into bed with any hideous country for a buck and the tech firms don’t exhibit much better behavior in terms of a corporate conscience. Witness the recent behaviors of Yahoo, MSN and Google and their complicity and capitulation to the state sponsored censorship machine of the Chinese. With all of Bill Gates so called humanitarian work you think he throw in a good word for the prisoners within the walls of Microsoft. Not a chance when a buck can be made.

You probably thought I would go off on a liberal, Hollywood-tinged rant about Tibet; after all, the Chinese view the country as implicitly theirs, even though the Tibetan people want no part of the Chinese occupiers. Couple that with the traditional Chinese racist’s attitudes toward Tibetans, they sort of view Tibet as a sort of a northern Mexico, and you have a brutal repression strikingly similar to the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. In fact, it escapes me as to how this situation is different and why a movement has yet to materialize to boycott the Olympics like we did the Moscow games other than the fact corporate America is still making a buck in trading with the Chinese. I guess that was the Russian’s mistake, not making enough money with the US. Undoubtedly, the mountainous terrain also reminds the Chinese authorities of this unflattering parallel but fortunately for the repressors they face a pacifist Buddhist population rather than a Jihadists Moslem population like they may be facing in their western provinces.

Still the parallel sends a collective chill down the spines of the Chinese oppressors, so much so they felt compelled to kidnap the chosen Panchen Lama. For those not up on their comparative religious studies, in Tibetan Buddhism, the Panchen Lama is a sacred religious figure who chooses the successor to the Dalai Lama. With that kidnapping the Chinese now claim the right to name the next Dalai Lama! They have absolutely no shame but to hold the Chinese responsible just for Tibet is to miss out on the bigger picture. For the past five years the rest of the world has been so busy excoriating the U.S. for our misguided Mid-East policies they have literally allowed the Chinese to fly under the proverbial moral radar!

For example, China’s draconian prison policies should engender the biggest outrage for any thinking person or the grudging admiration of any closet Nazi. China’s penal policies include the systematic execution of 10,000 people annually, comprised mostly of petty criminals, the occasional corrupt party officials (no doubt the ones who stupidly refused to share or whose shoddy practices led to the death of some unfortunates) and numerous political prisoners. Fervent believers in recycling and in making a quick buck, the Chinese authorities routinely harvest the organs of their executed prisoners’ minutes after their death. Yes, if you haven’t heard, you can buy that liver or kidney from China that may have been inaccessible to you in the states. Or they sell the bodies for medical research; you know for that human anatomy plastination exhibit that the touristos love to goggle over in America’s big cities. How obscene and complicit is that viewing now that you know there is a possibility that the contorted and flayed body mounted in Plexiglas may have belonged to an executed political prisoner. One moment you’re alive and vigorously chanting for the return of the Dalai Lama and a few months later, your executed, lifeless inner guts are on display at the BodyWorlds exhibit at the South Street Seaport in NY. To add insult to injury, they made a few hundred dollars in the process of executing and selling your sad-assed carcass.

China’s own foreign policy is even sorrier and you only have to look to Darfur to witness the Chinese complicity in the killing of native Africans. And if China doesn’t get you with their abhorrent foreign policy they’ll kill you with their damn pollution. China continues to put a new coal firing plant on line each week, none of them fitted with scrubbers and in short order, they have already exceeded the U.S. in the dubious distinction of being the world’s biggest carbon gas emitter. And please, I don’t want to hear about that stupid knee jerk carbon tax proposal of Al Gore’s until the Chinese and India also agree to curb their emissions.

But, hey I digress and this mess gets even better. A global recession, coupled with China’s twenty million plus surplus of young males, ought to elicit some interestingly bad behavior by the Chinese authorities in the years ahead. You know, of the criminal and warlike variety. The extra males, euphemistically called bare branches because they can’t find a mate, are the result of decades of female infanticide, in part due to the stringent population control measures the Chinese authorities have put in place. Any way you look at it, it’s either going to be golden era for Chinese prostitutes or a tumultuous period of continuous regional wars as the Chinese Authorities put their surplus male population to good use.

Should the American populace be concerned about such egregious behavior, especially considering that our own politicos don’t appear to be too concerned? “Hey give them time; they’ll come around to our way of thinking,” is the standard line. So are we engaging them and thereby opening up their society and hopefully ameliorating their egregious behavior by some form of mythical Western cultural osmosis or are they changing our own perceptions by dramatically rewriting the rules for capitalism? Who knows and nobody cares, because in the interim, we all think we are making a buck in the process. And in the final analysis what is more important, the ongoing misbehavior by the host country of the Olympiad or missing out on the opportunity to watch thousands of over trained, steroid-fueled, doped-out amateurs looking for their big pay day in the Beijing smog?

My best guess is that we are all going to mindlessly watching the modern day equivalent of the 1936 Berlin games, as we and the athletes hold our collective noses, albeit for entirely different reasons. Frankly, do we even care? Should we care? Does our participation in a global economy mean that we have to turn a blind eye regarding the ongoing human rights atrocities by our biggest trading partner? Hell, President Bush doesn’t care since he is on his way to games even after he meets with Chinese dissidents. I can only imagine the scintillating intellectual debate that will ensue from such a historic meeting of the minds. “You know you all should try a little more democracy, by the way, the Peking duck is real good.” If the President can be a such a tool why shouldn’t we?

Moreover, by boycotting NBC are we not just penalizing an American Company? That’s the beauty of my proposal: NBC is owned by GE, the corporate progenitor of that sick six sigma mentality, you know the one that outsourced your job to China in the first place. Hence, we have come full circle and you know what they say about payback. All we have to do is not watch and send collective chill down the spines of the communist oppressors and corporate hijackers of the American dream. Ah, screw it, I know you’re going to watch these pre-digested games anyway, after all there’s nothing else on during the summer and by August the majority of baseball teams have become also-rans. It’s just that I won’t be joining you in viewing this fascist spectacle on NBC.

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Flores Girl: The Children God Forgot is an exciting speculative adventure story about the discovery of a new prehistoric people by two scientists, Sarah and Richard. Their discovery is threatened by both religious zealots and marauding industrialists. Download the e-Book in PDF, Mobi and Microsoft Reader formats. Honest it is free at Just click the chick!

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September 2020

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