小北的不老歌

Monthly Archive: March 2009

人民民主专政

拜读了国会刚通过的对某些年终奖征收百分之九十的税的法案以后,终于见识了人民民主专政的实例。不光打击了银行高管,还连带打击了几万名普通银行员工,但是几万银行员工和几千万群情激愤的选民比起来,算得上什么呢?前端时期刺激经济法案出台的时候,还特别禁止这些银行雇用外籍员工,外籍员工本来数量就很少,从来就是光纳税没发言权的,一来没占美国人几个位子二来没导致金融危机,但是这千把法定沉默的外籍员工和几千万张选票相比,实在是太渺小了。所以,有的事情,一两句话解释不清楚,老百姓不明白怎么回事,但被无比自由的媒体用煽动性的大字标题一忽悠,复杂的事情被简单化了,简单化的事情被戏剧化了,戏剧化的事情弄得群情激愤了,于是完全民意选举出来的英明的人民代表们也一个个义愤填膺的样子,认真地开展严打工作,积极地建设政绩工程,对引起公愤的少数人进行严格专政,坦白从宽抗拒从严,把年终奖主动交回来一切好商量,拒不交钱我就用国家机器把钱拿回来;工作都要留给美国本地人,外来人口就是讨人厌就要赶走你们能怎么着吧。

美国的愤青有人惊呼:如此劫富济贫,共产主义来到美国了。我看其实和资本主义还是共产主义没有什么关系,落水狗在哪里都是一样的被幸灾乐祸地追着打,都是专政对象,走的程序不同罢了。

电话

给一个老同学打电话,有小半年没联系了。打到手机上没人接,录音提示里是一个女声,估计换号了。于是没有留言,挂掉了。

一分钟以后来了个电话,一看是我刚才拨的号码,于是接起来,准备说句对不起我刚才拨错了就算了。

电话里一个女声说:你刚才找谁?

我找某某某(男生名)。

你听着觉得我象是[男生名]吗?

不是不是,明显不是。对不起我大概拨错号了。

先别挂。你单身么?

……?

你寂寞么?

……??

你如果感兴趣的话我这里有很多女孩子。

……???

很漂亮的。

对不起对不起我确实打错了。

包你满意。

不要。

那你是警察还是催债的?

=======
本故事并非虚构,如有雷同绝非巧合。

纽约屎报啊纽约屎报

贵报别在报道中国的时候总那么鸡动,这篇报道实在是太能联想太能上纲上线了,竟然能把草泥马的风行这个现象拔高到反对网络过滤的压迫,实在是太油彩了。不知道你们的脑残妓者知不知道网络时代同音字的泛滥本身就是一种网络文化,本身和网络过滤无关?明天请你们写一写“美眉酱紫稀饭帅锅”这些词风靡中国的含义,是不是能拔高到民众对环境污染计划生育和少数民族问题不满的高度。

当然,不排除网络过滤脏话的功能可能使得这些同音字更加可笑,但是贵报的留言栏里也一样有这项功能,只可惜英文除了fcuk f**k 和 ^&*( 之外没什么变化,也不知道“Duck Fuke”这类广为流传日久不衰的口号是不是也能巧妙地躲过你们的过滤系统——如果能的话是不是对贵报的过滤系统的一种抗争行为?不过,非要把隐含脏话的笑话往政治上靠的话,你们的妓者也一定认为美国那么多色情片的制作者之所以孜孜不倦地工作,那么多色情片的购买者之所以乐此不疲地观赏,肯定是为了四处宣示他们得来不易的宪法第一修正案的权利,而不是因为有的人要挣钱有的人要找乐有的人要发泄。

By the way, remember the movie “Meet the Fockers”? What can we conclude from its popularity? That the audience want the FCC or MPAA or whatever agency to go fock themselves for not allowing anything PG-13 rated to feature someone named straight-up Mr. Gay Fucker? Or is it rather that Mr. Gaylord Focker actually sounds funnier for being a plausible real name in the same way that Grass-Mud-Horse is?

The Anatomy of a Slogan

A recent statement from a senior member of the party leadership has caused some concern among China’s political reform advocates. The statement, quite bluntly, asserts that China will always have a one-party system, will never copy the Western style of democracy, and will never adopt the separation of powers and checks and balances of the Western political system.

I am more amused than disappointed by this statement. A less blunt way of putting across the same idea would have been to say that we will develop a political system “with Chinese characteristics.” This reminds me of the good old days when all of us engaged in empty yet blunt slogan shouting and chest pounding without much logical basis to back up what we say. In those days, the important thing was that we said politically correct things out loud, to show our intention and determination to be politically correct, not so much that we can offer a sound explanation for our words and why certain things are deemed politically correct while others are not.

Most politicians are alike in this regard. Not every American, even in a supposedly free society, seem to have agonized over the missing link between “freedom” as a founding virtue of this country and invasion of another country halfway around the world in the name of preserving this virtue. Few people seem to be bothered by the inconsistency between Geithner’s statement to the Congress that China manipulates its currency exchange rate and Hillary’s plea to China for it to buy more US treasuries, the net effect of which purchase, of course, is to artificially suppress RMB’s value. The bottomline everywhere, I suppose, is the targeted audience, and what they deem as politically correct.

I am less concerned about the one-party leadership and its corollary that Western democracy should not be copied wholesale. Supreme leadership of the party is not much cause for concern if we realize that the party itself has been, and will continue to be, a constantly morphing establishment. If the party, instead of representing farmers and workers’ interests like it claimed in its early years, and instead of representing bureaucrats’ interests like it seemed to do later on, fairly represents a cross-section of the Chinese demography, then I do not see any conceptual difficulty in likening the party to a vastly expanded electoral college, which nominally claims some remnants of its distant past as its guiding ideology (socialism/communism in the party’s case, freedom from tyranny and oppression in the US’s case, the monarch in the UK’s case) but in practice gives that ideology little present relevance other than the occasional, politically correct references to it.

I am, however, bewildered by the jump to the conclusion that separation of powers and checks and balances should also be rejected. Given the one-party system, isn’t there the possibility (and to some extent, reality) that there can be separate branches of the government all under the party’s supreme leadership, which branches could hold separate powers and constitute checks and balances upon each other? In particular, an independent judiciary could still submit to the party’s supreme leadership, which is itself enshrined in the Constitution and therefore not only politically but also legally binding upon the courts, but could also be free from interference from other branches of the government, so that there can be a fair, efficient and just legal system, which is the foundation of all modern governments, regardless of what ideology the government or the party subscribes to.

You see only what you want to see

Scanning through the China NPC-related news articles on English media sites, I thought it was odd to see how many photos had Chinese para-military and security personnel in them, even if the topic of the article had nothing to do with these men in uniforms. If a picture is worth a thousand words, I wonder what unspoken message these photos relay to their American readers. I guess it is human nature to see only what you want to see, but isn’t being a journalist all about seeing more than just what one wants to see? In that regard, these photos probably revealed much more about the photographers/editors themselves than about China.

Just as an example: there are 39 photos in the slide show here; about a third of these photos portray military officers, paramilitary personnel, or security guards in some way. Seems a bit excessive in an article about China’s NPC and active bank lending?

A few more examples:


Title of the article: China’s Soaring Bank Lending Stands Out in Global Downturn. It takes quite a bit of imagination to relate this photo to the topic.


Title of article: China Signals no Economic Overhaul.
Pictured: Security guards look down at the delegates.


Title of article: China Congress to Focus on Boosting Energy
Pictured: paramilitary officer standing next to cars. Ok, cars, energy. I get it. And these paramilitary officers are probably just so ubiquitous that one couldn’t take a picture without one of them filling up a third of the frame.

Florida Day 4 – Biscayne

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Biscayne National Park, on the mainland.

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Lighthouse on Boca Chita Island, Biscayne National Park

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The dock at Boca Chita Island is full of boats

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Coconut tree?

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A rock and an open coconut; you know what happened here.

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Little monkey likes fresh coconut

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Fingers still smell like coconut?

Florida Day 2 – Dry Tortugas

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Dry Tortugas National Park, a small island about 70 miles, or two hours by ferry, from Key West.

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Snorkelers’ paradise

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So we thought we could at least go for a swim

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and did.

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Another look at the fort, the massive deserted structure that occupies almost the entire island

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Two more hours of ferry back to Key West, and spotted this sign.