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Archive for August, 2013

Are The American and Chinese Dreams That Different – You Can’t Tell From Obama’s March on Washington Speech Yesterday

August 29th, 2013 6 comments

common aspirationsYesterday, the U.S. marked the 50th anniversary of the “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.”  It was in that event 50 years ago that King gave his famous “I have a Dream” speech.  By most accounts, Obama’s speech is well-delivered and well-received – albeit “not as good.”  It could not be, Obama would explain, “[b]ecause when you are talking about Dr. King’s speech at the March on Washington, you’re talking about one of the maybe five greatest speeches in American history. And the words that he spoke at that particular moment, with so much at stake, and the way in which he captured the hopes and dreams of an entire generation I think is unmatched.”

If King’s speech 50 years ago was among the “five greatest speeches” in American history, the Obama’s speech today is a present-day synthesis of all that Americans hold most dear.  If you listen, you will glimpse the American Dreams and feel America’s soul. Here is an excerpt of the speech 1. Read more…

Notes:

  1. A transcript of Obama’s speech can be found here and a video can be found here.

The U.S.S. Midway and the Phantom F-4 jet fighter

August 27th, 2013 6 comments

During my teenage years, I dreamed of becoming a jet fighter pilot. Believe it or not, I was accepted by the U.S. Air Force Academy, and had I opt for that career, I would certainly have seen my share of war. Anyways, few days ago, my family visited the U.S.S. Midway aircraft carrier in San Diego. The ship and the airplanes on it have been decommissioned for couple of decades now, but being in their presence still rekindled the excitement I had many years ago. Below is a frontal view of a Phantom F-4 on USS Midway. These two pieces of arsenal made a formidable duo during the early years of the Cold War. The fighter is capable of speed faster than mach 2 (two times the speed of sound). It can carry a variety of missiles and bombs, including the nuclear bomb!

Phantom 4 fighter on the U.S.S. Midway

Phantom F-4 fighter on the U.S.S. Midway


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San Diego Zoo Safari Park and few thoughts on conservation

August 24th, 2013 No comments

Slideshow below are random shots I took while at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park today. I admire the efforts at this facility in educating the public about endangered animals as well as their active role in helping to stop some species from becoming extinct.


On the topic of poaching, I think there is something to be said about the rich countries versus the poor.
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Categories: Analysis, Environment, Photos Tags:

Chinese Tourists

August 23rd, 2013 2 comments
Ultimus Prime robot at the Transformers ride in Universal Studios

Ultimus Prime robot at the Transformers ride in Universal Studios

In recent years, we hear increasing number of Chinese tourists visit Western countries. I have certainly seen my share and even encountered quite a few. While at Universal Studios yesterday, I am yet again reminded of that trend. In fact, for a brief moment I thought I was in China as two large groups of tourists made their way towards the Transformer ride. I had just gotten off the ride and was heading out. As they walked by, I glance into the crowd. Partly, because I was hoping to catch some eyes so that I can give back a welcoming smile. But, partly, because I was intent on observing for any odd behavior.

(Earlier this year on Maui, Hawaii, I regretted not able to stop in time a Chinese tourist spitting water he gurgled his mouth with unto the pristine beach – the same beach where shortly after I took these shots of cliff diving. Suffice to say, he was embarrassed. And so was I – knowing other beach-goes have just caught a glimpse of something as unthinkable as that just happened!)

Alas, both groups were well mannered and “normal.”

Due to the volume of Chinese tourists, Universal Studios in fact have studio tours conducted in Mandarin couple of times a day. Read more…

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Chinese Advocate Post #2: Hazards of Immigrating to the West

August 23rd, 2013 2 comments

Chinese AdvocateAs more Chinese people are free to leave China and choose immigrate to the West, many are unaware of the many hazards of such immigration, and falling victim to them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Partner of Snowden journalist was detained for 9 hours & had his property seized for no reason

August 20th, 2013 4 comments

I think Citizens of the UK should start familiarizing themselves with the phrase “being invited for tea”  (请喝茶). Democracy at work, folks. Oh by the way, for those extolling the righteousness of “rule of law”, this is all legal under current British law.

EDIT: One more note, at least Chinese security doesn’t rob you of your video games when they invite you for tea.

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Categories: News, politics Tags: ,

Business Insider’s Reporting on China

August 14th, 2013 14 comments

On 13th Aug, 2013 I clicked on articles with China as a tag, http://www.businessinsider.com/category/china

This is what appeared as it was (no selection was done by me):

Rare Video Appears To Show A Public Execution In China

How The Emerging Markets Will Unravel As China Unwinds Its Debt

The Sex Lives Of Top Chinese Officials

How China’s Tax Structure Crushes The Poor

STUDY: There’s A Huge, $1 Trillion Hole In Chinese GDP

Expert: Dalai Lama’s Website Has Been Hacked And It’s Infecting People’s Computers Read more…

Categories: Analysis, News, Opinion Tags:

On Yemen drone strikes and U.S. mainstream and social media

August 12th, 2013 7 comments

For those of you who pay attention to the news, the United States have stepped up drone strikes recently, including many in Yemen. It is interesting to observe how the U.S. and British media report on such strikes and their damages. CNN headlined those killed as, “militants.” Reuters, “suspected militants.” Bloomberg, “Al-Qaeda Suspects.” U.K’s BBC, “militants.”

Except, according to Press TV, an Iranian-based station, “US drones kill mostly civilians in Yemen.”

So, what is the real truth? Difficult to know isn’t it? However, as FAIR.org recently argued, the U.S. mainstream media are basically letting U.S. government officials decide who the casualties are and never bother to find out: Read more…

Sun Yang ‘freestyle king’

August 8th, 2013 No comments

For China Daily’s take on his three medals at the World Swimming Championships, click here. Below is the 1500m freestyle where he smashes the world record.

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Chinese Advocate Post #1: Some General Law advice for Fellow Chinese

August 2nd, 2013 4 comments

Chinese Advocate  Unlike some blogs that pretend to talk about “China Law”, when they are really talking about how to get around Chinese laws, I decided to talk about how Chinese people need to protect themselves in international businesses.

This is Post #1.

First, I’m an ethnic Chinese (7/8 Han, 1/8 unknown).  I’m trained and qualified as a US attorney, but I’m not qualified in Chinese law.  So most of what I will talk about is on US laws.  My discussions are for general legal education purposes, not for specific legal advice on specific individual cases.  If you need specific legal advice for your situations, please consult qualified attorneys in the relevant jurisdictions.  If you need to find a qualified attorney, feel free to post your request in the comment, and someone may be able to refer a good lawyer to you.  I’m not soliciting any clients here.

The reason I wanted to start this post as a continuing series, is that recently I am very dismayed to find many cases where I believe Chinese companies and individuals have been thoroughly abused and taken advantage of, because they simply did not prepare themselves adequately in the legal issues.

Read more…

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“first island chain”

August 2nd, 2013 9 comments

island_chains

(click to enlarge)

During the Cold War, the United States sought to contain China by forming a “first island chain” from Japan reaching all the way down to the Philippines. (Refer to the map on the left.) Circled are various straits China has successfully navigated through to date. After reading this China Daily report, I was curious where those mentioned straits are located. With Russia, China probably feels more emboldened to crossed those parts of the chain.

We are accustomed to hearing joint navy exercises between the U.S. and Japan in the region on a regular basis. However, in recent years, China and Russia are conducting exercises of their own. Given Obama’s Asia Pivot, where the U.S. officially divert more naval power to the region, China sees urgency in beefing up her presence too. Read more…

Categories: Analysis Tags:

Other Snowden Relevations

August 1st, 2013 9 comments

I wish to make a few observations about Edward Snowden from a slightly different angle.

Initially, there were legitimate queries concerning the apparent ease with which he copied highly confidential information, his background, and the escape. They seemed sensible questions, without the fingerprints of Disinformation Agents. But by now, it must be quite clear that Snowden is genuine. 

Most of the operational puzzles can be answered if we let go of one assumption: That the US secret machinery, powerful as it is, must be competent like what we see in movies. People who have worked for major multinationals might agree that the functioning of huge organisations is appallingly less coherent and rational than what outsiders might perceive. A simple example: The computer servers of most companies, big or small, are maintained by an outside contractor or a relatively junior staff member. No highly paid senior person is willing — or capable of — maintaining the system. Now, unless top executives exchange confidential correspondence by hand-written notes, relatively junior technicians could access them if they want to, including an audit trail of the Chairman’s internet activities during office hours. Read more…

Categories: Analysis, News, Opinion Tags: ,

Short-Sale AMSC: DOJ’s Stealth Probe of AMSC

August 1st, 2013 2 comments

************UPDATES:

Incidentally, http://blogs.orrick.com/trade-secrets-watch/2013/07/10/money-money-money-top-10-trade-secret-verdicts/,

Out of top 10 Trade Secret IP theft verdicts, NOT 1 involved pure software based trade secret.  And ONLY 2 had verdicts exceeding $800 million.

 

More bad news for AMSC just keep coming:  AUGUST 2013

(1) AMSC, this month of August 2013, “dismissed” its public auditing firm of PriceWaterhouseCooper (PwC), over unspecified “disagreements”.

Hmm…. I think PwC smells an investigation coming.

(2) AMSC’s VP of Communication Jason Fredette left AMSC, in 2013, to become “independent communication consultant”. His Linkedin profile indicates “Independent Communications Consultant  Client: AMSC (American Superconductor Corp.)”


 

 

 

 

 

Yes, this was the same Jason Fredette quoted by numerous articles about the Sinovel dispute.

Hmm…. Why would a VP of Communication leave to become an independent communication consultant for the same company??

Can someone say, “laid off”, kick off to the curb, on furlough, resume place holder?

(3) AMSC’s General Counsel, John W. Powell, left AMSC to join as an “of counsel” for a small Boston IP law firm of Occhiuti Rohlicek & Tsao LLP. (The move is only indicated on his linkedin, as AMSC still list him as general counsel, and the law firm has not added him on their website yet).


 

 

 

 

 

When I say “small law firm”, I mean tiny tiny. The firm has less than 10 lawyers.

Mr. Powell, previously worked for noted companies like Motorola and Raytheon, and even testified before the US Sentencing Commission regarding the Sinovel case.

Pretty giant fall from in-house Fortune 500 to “of counsel” of a D-list law firm.

Perhaps Mr. Powell is laid off? Or he knows legal troubles coming when he smells them.

Read more…

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How Food Adulteration in US is Downplayed by Media

August 1st, 2013 2 comments

An actual story:  Customers of a bar complains that high end scotch served tasted bad.  Complaints were ignored until officials got a sample of the drink and tested it.  It turned out to be rubbing alcohol (ethanol, which is somewhat toxic) mixed with caramel food coloring.  At a different bar, bottles with dirty water was presented as liquor.

Where did this happen?  Some might guess in China.  But it actually happened in New Jersey, detected only after a 1 year long sting operation (Operation Swill).

Well, Western media did report “Operation Swill”, which netted raids on 29 restaurants and bars, 13 of which were TGI Friday Restaurants owned by 1 owner.  Just in New Jersey.

Unfortunately, most of the media did NOT report any of the really gory details from above, rubbing alcohol, dirty water.  See for yourselves:  http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/01/nyregion/many-bars-misled-drinkers-new-jersey-says.html.  (Lesser known media reported more accurately:  http://www.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2013/05/rubbing_alcohol_as_scotch_nj_o.html)

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