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Posts filed under 'politics'

Social Expectation

Saw a play called “Kiss and Cry” with Christina on Friday. The play was a romantic comedy about a gay figure skater and a lesbian actress; who tried to conform to societies’ expectation and pretended to be together in front of public eyes. It was quite interesting as it tried to question the conflict between expectation and our own value system. The lead and supporting female character plays the extreme opposite view of an artist, where one seeks the approval of millions and the other tried to change one soul at a time.

I think every culture–be it the wholesome Christian community, the African American neighborhood, the Asian American grapevines–there is a certain expectation of how we should behave. Any deviation from that expectation could risk being coined as “not acting black” or “not acting Chinese”. One of the very interesting point the play tried to make was as an artist, are we doing art for ourselves, or for other people.

Of course how other see us plays a huge part in how we see ourselves. At the very least we learn a lot of our moral values from observing others. And certainly people I care about have a big influence on what I think. But what become interesting is when the moral values that we picked up deviates from the society’s expectation. That’s what makes individual an individual. That’s the fundamental force that makes American what it is today.

Add comment March 5th, 2006

FT interview with Craig Barrett

FT hosted a Q&A today with Intel CEO Craig Barrett, on K-12 education, immigration policies and their effect on the future competitiveness of the US. Dead on.

Add comment February 8th, 2006

lobster lover at wholefood

For New Years dinner I made lobster risotto and margarita pizza. When I was at the checkout lane, the cashier started an interesting conversation:

cashier: (picking up a brown paper bag) What’s this?
me: It’s a lobster
cashier: (open eyes really big) Is it alive?
me: It better be!
cashier: (looking concerned) Oh, I didn’t know we sell lobster pounder. Try not to bang it around, ok?
me: Thanks
me, a minute later: (Was she trying to tell me that banging it make the lobster scared and the adrenaline would make it less tasty, or was she really concern about the lobster? Hm… good that I didn’t tell her it’s my dinner. That would keep her up all night, wouldn’t it?)

So imagine if your pharmacist refuses to sell you the morning after pill, or creates an environment that’s uncomfortable for you to buy one. Should store employees have the rights to express their opinion to their customers when it’s not being asked? Freedom of speech give us the right to say what we belief. But as a store employee hired to perform a certain job, the freedom of speech in this case have a conflict with job performance. Some argued that we do have a choice on where we work, thus in this case if your freedom of speech is in conflict, one should go find another job. Does that mean Rosa Parks should go find anohter bus if this one doesn’t let her sit with the rest of the folks in the front?

Add comment January 2nd, 2006

Sales Oncall

NYC transit union (who run NYC’s subways and buses) decided to go on strike. They are ask for 8% raise every year, retirement age at 55 and declining MTA’s proposal for contributing 6% to their pension fund that will pay out 50% of their last year’s salary starting at 55. Average payout of their pension plan is a little over $1.5 M. What on earth are they smoking? I want some of that too.

Anyhow. Because of the transit strike, I got a ring from my manager at 2:00 in the morning. Guess what? It’s crisis managment all over again. We move up to a suite close to work at 3:00 in the morning, preparing to open the store as usual. We allocate two other workers to come into the city starting at 5:30, arrange two other workers to move out from Brooklyn at a later time to the suite, and open up 10:00am sharp. I think I am still enjoying the managed chaos that my last job trained me for. Perhaps I should aim for a more complex position when I look for a job.

We now have a suite opposite to work for ppl to go crash, and I have my cellphone on 24/7. Sound familiar? My PTS experience does come in handy at sometimes.

Add comment December 21st, 2005


Saw Syriana yesterday. The movie is about a series of stories with a common tie to US oil interest and how that bias influence politics and justices. I find the movie rather complicated. Nevertheless, it is something that I’d recommended. I would need to see it again to get a better idea of what’s going on.

My friend Christine before going to the movie

Add comment November 27th, 2005

on religion

Last night I went out to meet some friends, and there was this dude who was complaining about how expensive tickets are to the east coast. It turns out that unfortunately he would need to fly out on 1-2 days notice for his grandmother in-laws funeral soon. And as he explains his wife was very close to her grandma, so she really wants to go to her funeral.

This is absolutely mind boggling for me, because first of all, we are talking about 1 day and possibily $1000. But naturally I wonder why he doesn’t want to fly out now to say proper the goodbye. The answer I got was that he doesn’t have the vacation, and that his grandma may have the entire month to live. It blows my mind completely. You can’t take the time to say a proper goodbye when that person is alive, but yet you care about someone so much that you HAVE to attend their funeral, AFTER that person has passed away? Isn’t it backward?

Apperantly it is his religious practice that you want to show God the you respect the person after they passed away, and that according to him, is more important than showing ther person that you care when he is alive. I am not in any position to question any religious believe. People I am close friends with like Tracy and Ronnie are very religious person too. They would allow religion to influence their value system, but never to a point so ignorant that you blindly follow what the book say. I would expect someone with a college education to have the basic intelligent to pick the religious practice that make sense.

Caring someone ONLY after they passed away, is clearly not in my book.

2 comments October 21st, 2005

Junichiro Koizumi

Junichiro Koizumi rocks! I wish Bush have half his balls. On reforming Japan’s postal system, he ran into opposition with a few members of his cabinet. He dissolved the entire house of representatives and called for re-election, in a atmosphere that his party might not get the majority. Which mean he’ll probably resign if they don’t. Although I didn’t like the fact that he consider Japanese veteran war hero, I admire his guts. Reminds me of the British prime minister in Love Actually.

1 comment September 13th, 2005

INTC and China’s one child policy

Missed INTC when IBM announced weak PC sales last month. The reason I like Intel has to do with China’s one child policy. If I have a choice of occupation in China, it would have to be a private piano teacher or a private English tutor. Because of the one child policy, each and every child is the crown jewel of their family. Being a competitive nation, parents are willing to spend pretty much anything on their child, esp on education related expenses. Intel is know for their marketing to consumer, and they do a much better job in that than AMD does. With the income level raising in China, more money will pour into education related items, such as Intel.

pic 1. Mexican disguised as a car seat, busted by US custom

I wonder if he has someone sitting on this guy when he is crossing the border. Sometimes I really impressed with the determination and ingenuity that some of these people have. When was the last time you take the risk to think out of the box? We need more of them. It gives me even more reason to support opening the border

1 comment June 2nd, 2005

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