I’m glad to see the Chinese media FINALLY starting to explicitly outline the hypocrisy of American human rights rhetoric, but I think it doesn’t go far enough to illustrate the sheer scale of US human rights violations & issues, such as:
The lack of respect for equal rights not just by the US government, but BY THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, as demonstrated by the popularity of xenophobic, & particularly islamophobic rhetoric among presidential candidates.
I think CCTV’s exclusion important details such as the aforementioned may create the misconception that the US human rights problems they outlined are somehow “small & isolated”, and inadequately highlights the widespread nature of their lack of respect for human rights. But nevertheless, this is a good start.
I think it is about time for some lighthearted subject matter. I have written awhile back that China’s so-called censorship does not stop creativity, rather it is the lack of “environment” that is the biggest bottle neck. One can talk about innovation, creativity, freedom etc but without a viable market there would be no cutting edge artistic commercial creation. My favorite for 2015 is Monkey King: Hero is Back (西游记之大圣归来).
If you guys have kids, you should watch it with them. You will not regret it. Either way enjoy the trailer here which is in English:
Besides the romantic, simplified “freedom” Official Narrative that framed the biblical David against Goliath story onto the Occupy Central protesters, seemingly for the purpose of indoctrinating media consumers in the West – is anything being left out?
Here, not so elegantly, are some raw YouTube clips – Occupy Central’s “peace and love” our supposedly free and objective media has choose to self-censor.
(Note: if youtube doesn’t work for you, scroll down to the bottom of post to get the videos we hosted here).
Foul-mouthed protester threatening people who disagrees:
I wanted to share a video that has gone viral on Youku, and has gotten the attention of western outlets such as Time Magazine, which will no doubt attract ample amounts of sneers and visceral comments from the West. I’m posting both the English (Youtube) and Chinese (Youku) versions, for everyone’s convenience.
Video below was taken about a year ago, then 5-year old Tsung Tsung exhibiting what a piano prodigy he was. This is obviously raw talent and true passion. It would have been a shame for not Tsung Tsung’s parents affording him the piano and the lessons. Tsung Tsung is another example of why I am bullish on China. The hundreds of millions of Chinese finally moving out of the farms, away from playing in the dirt, are finally getting a chance to unleash their potential. That’s all due to stable development. When James Fallows told the Anglophone media that the Chinese have no dream, well, we were the first to tell him: shove it!
A civilization of 1.3 billion and having a continuous history of thousands of years can only mean one thing: it’s language and culture should have both amazing breath and depth. One of my hobbies is to rediscover this richness that’s accorded me through my heritage. I want people around me to relish in what Chinese culture has to offer. Recently, I discovered Suzhou Pingtan (苏州评弹), an interesting oral artform accompanied usually by musical instruments or props to tell a story. Its roots are Suzhou and Jiangsu (江苏) in the 1600’s. The performance below is done by a large group, a modern rendition I suppose, though I think two or three performers are the norm. I lament my Chinese language is poor, because the prose and the stories are often delivered in amazing eloquence (Chinese language can be extremely compact while character combinations provide context enabling further reduction in number of characters needed).
Back in October 4, 2011, I predicted the Occupy Wall Street movement would fizzle, simply because the U.S. corporate media were not behind it. pug_ster argued Obama’s first term supporters were starting to become disillusioned, “Just today the Unions, Moveon.org and many other left groups whom have supported Obama in the past are joining this protest.” While true, I still think U.S. media propaganda is too strong. For sure, they talk about the wealth gap in this country. However, their narratives in painting a more dire picture abroad and not pushing the Occupy’s narratives domestically allows a skewed view to fester within the American public. The following short video does an exceptional job in explaining this perception versus reality gap in America.
Exactly five years ago on February 3, 2008, Shaolin Temple officially opened it’s first branch in Fremont, California. Since then, branches in San Francisco and Herndon (Virginia) have been established. More will follow in coming years. At the 5th anniversary, I got to witness a Buddhist blessing ceremony. While I couldn’t comprehend everything, my understanding was that we should find inner peace and let go all that troubles us. Master Shi Yanran presided over the ceremony with California State Senator Leland Yee, Fremont Mayor Bill Harrison, and other community leaders present to lend support. In the video below I caught up with Senator Yee on what Shaolin means for him. Rest are footage I took while observing the ceremony.
Despite all the flaws of the US aviation industry (as illustrated by the 787 post below), the US and the West remains many years ahead of China in just about every part of the aviation value chain. However, this gap just got smaller yesterday with the maiden flight of the Y-20, a Chinese counterpart to the Russian Il-76 and the US C-17. Upon entering service, the Y-20 and variations thereof will have three primary civil and military applications: long-range heavy airlift, mid-air refueling, and airborne early warning & control.
Bravo to the engineers, scientists, management, and support staff of the Xian Aircraft Company.
Recently a TED video featuring Michael Anti on China’s censorship seems to be making the rounds. I think Anti does bring some unique insights to the English speaking audience about China that we don’t generally see in Western media; hence I am providing his video below. However, I think Anti can also be a stubborn ideologue who insist on viewing the world through ideological blinders.
Below is a transcript of the video (in quotes) as well as my response. Read more…
Often when returning from Asia, I will look out the window as the airplane descends into San Francisco. Invariably, I will see fogs entering the San Francisco Bay, some times completely engulfing the Golden Gate bridge. I have always wanted to make a time-lapsed video, so decided the fogs over the bridge would be a perfect subject. So, here it is, shot with my Canon 5D Mark 2 using the 16-35mm F/2.8L II lens. It was a beautiful day yesterday. Footage was taken from Hawk Hill, a vista point north-west to the bridge. Music is courtesy of Yoyo Ma, performing Bach’s cello suite #1’s, “Prelude.” Make sure to view it full screen at 1080p!
(Watch this on Youku.com if the following is inaccessible.)
I am a fan of Devin Graham, who is all about positive energy in his videography. Below is a video he made of human in flight. When I think about the American dream, this is one of the things I have in mind: a rich society that accords its people all sorts of pursuits. When your society is not rich enough where you are on subsistence farming or working in the factory, you are much more limited to what you can pursue. Still, here is a toast to Devin Graham: for showing us the dreams, even $1/hr workers in China could dare dream in the coming decades. When you are poor, racists will tell you that you are a sick man with no dreams. So, work hard, crawl out of poverty, and dream big!
June 1 is the official children’s day in China. To the fathers who are musicians, athletes, artists, or simple laymen who have found ways to impart something they love to their children, it’s pure bliss. Following performance is by a singer with his 3 years old daughter, titled, “Because of Love” (“因为爱情“). It has become a big hit in China. Happy Children’s Day! Read more…
As I have written a number of years ago (see ““Father’s Prairie, Mother’s River” – the feelings of one billion people on the move“), China is a country in transition. There are still hundreds of millions of people toiling away trying to survive. The following is a testimony to this idea that there are many diamonds in the rough, and China needs to continue to churn out opportunities for her people at breakneck speed. Anyways, story was revealed only after initially failing their performance on the popular “China’s Got Talent” show. I highly recommend it. Some of you might be moved to tears.
This is a thought-provoking two-part documentary, titled, “Culture Shock – Chinese Americans in China,” produced by Stephy Chung featuring Chinese Americans’ experiences in China with Beijing Foreign University Professor Li Jinzhao (Center for Diaspora Studies) providing analysis from an identity point of view. Professor Li says that Chinese Americans in China are “constantly weighing the values [Chinese and American] and trying to decide which is better.” The documentary also features Kaiser Kuo, who explains how these Chinese Americans could channel their energy and perhaps embrace this idea of dual culturalism, which then allows them to bridge China and America. Read more…
In this short interview, CEO Witty of Glaxo – British multinational pharmaceutical, biologics, vaccines and consumer healthcare company – said that while Chinese government will continue to have a tension between building its domestic industry and fomenting an open competitive market in which foreign companies participates, it does a good job of making its market fair. Most importantly, Witty notes that it’s important to take a long-term view when it comes to China. Glaxo intends to embed its Chinese operations into an integral part of the company. You won’t be that successful if you just take a “tourist” of China, he said. Witty says Glaxo intends to profit as well as to innovate in China.
Today also happened to be the day before new year (除夕)in the lunar calendar. I would like to wish everybody a happy, healthy and prosperous dragon year. Instead of the usual heavy subject matter, I would like to talk about something more light hearted. I am in a holiday mood today so I will address some concern about the lack of creativity in TV broadcasting in China. Instead of using academic discussion I will simply provide a link to a hot TV series that has taken my sister by storm. She is the one that actually sent it to me. In fact she considered this love/history drama so good that it triumphed all works from Taiwan and HK (of course that’s her personal view).
The TV series is “步步惊心” or “步步驚心”loosely translated as “Startling by Each Step”, I know the translation is always so corny. It is about a modern girl who went back through time to the later reign of Qing Kangxi period. If you are familiar with this period, you will know the palace intrigue that took place. Although it is considered science fiction, the costume and cultural aspect is very accurate. The author of the original work is 桐华. She did an awesome work by inter-weaning love and politics into the story.
In an earlier comment I talked about the importance of “国家,” and having just watched this music video by Jacky Chan (成龙) in duet with MEI He (美和) paying homage to that same idea made my day. Without a strong enough country, there is no freedom.
Following is a rendition of Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” in Chinese. It’s a delightful performance. The Chinese performance struck me for having taken the music (in my opinion the great part) and replacing the lyrics (in my opinion the not so great part) with something that is much more palatable. While China has many problems to overcome, she is also benefiting from experiences in societies abroad. The benefit of coming from behind is you have the luxury to pick and choose. Not to mention, who would imagine there’s a connection between Lady Gaga and grandma’s and grandpa’s in China!
This might be old news to some (as the original painting was done during the Song Dynasty) but a digital version was created for the China pavilion during the Shanghai Expo 2010. After the expo it was displayed from November 9 to November 29, 2010 and is currently in Taipei from July 1 to October 4, 2011.
This has always been one of my favourite painting so I think I will share it here. The actual painting is (24.8 by 528.7 cm) (9¾ in by 17 ft 4 in) Hope you like the digital version below:
As the Western saying goes, “All roads lead to Rome”. In a world of diversity, there is no such thing as “the only right path”. The popular conviction of the Chinese people is that our path should be based on our national conditions and rooted in reality. China’s experience cannot be exported. By the same token, not all Western experience will suit China.
Of course, this does not mean that China should stop drawing upon the useful experience of the West. We will continue to learn from all the good experience and best practices in the world that suit and help China’s development. At the same time, we will explore new forms and ways to meet the demand of China’s continued development and the development of political civilization in the world. (TANG GUOQIANG, Chinese Ambassador to Norway)