The Security Establishment

Now that I have finished my stint in a semi-corporate setting in a security company, i can let you know a little bit about how things work. These companies do business here with the permssion of the Chinese government. This means that they are under the constant supervision of the Public Security Bureau. As such, […]

busy day

In this small blurb about a photo that made it into a tabloid about the Tiananmen protests in 1989, we see another example of the many people these days who don’t know about what happened and frankly don’t care, yet face the consequences for their ignorance. I wrote before about a couple of copy editors […]

Picture me Laughing

china gives peeps designated “arrest me” zones to do their thing. “Chinese people know better than to go demonstrate in a {issue} zone during the Olympics, except maybe a few people with nothing to lose,” he said. “They know the risk of retribution is very high.” He added: “It is not a step toward allowing […]

Aint Nothing Changed

Things is hectic in this piece … for real. after the K’ming bombings the government made a few changes to security that are putting a crimp in everyone’s style. In the Metro lines the only security they have are cadres of fussy old women — the same people who yell at bicycles that cross the […]

No Fun Olympics

Check out my no-fun dork shoes: China’s “top-down” approach to security in the Olympics guarantees that there will be very little mirthful exchanges between the people (in public places at least) and the Games here will be … well … all business. 2am curfew. anti-drunken partying behavior by the coppers. random security checks. jumpy cops […]

The elephant in my bathroom

how silly we humans be. Sports are and have been one of the ultimate political experiences for societies since the dawn of the ball. A discus tossing match between a Spartan and an Athenian was the grand catharsis of the day. A football match between Turkey and Germany is passionate, bloody and emotional because it […]

Woe unto the Enemies of the State

Patriotism at the expense of another nation is as wicked as racism at the expense of another race…Let us resolve to be patriots always, nationalists never.– Rev. William Sloane Coffin Today at 2:28pm, the entire Chinese nation stood at attention for three minutes to remember the victims of the Sichuan Earthquake. Today’s edition of the […]

We felt it comin …

My friend Rachel wrote the day before the quake: “I feel like the world is shifting” if ya’ll check the first few lines of my post “The Illusion of Coincidence” you’ll see that there was something in the air … just to embellish a bit: yesterday was Buddha’s birthday. The plates that caused this earthquake […]

HK Torch Relay

here is a column i wrote for Antiwar.com that will not get published: On Friday the torch arrives in Hong Kong. Demonstrators from around the world are arriving ahead of time to take advantage of this opportunity: after Hong Kong the flame will be traveling through Mainland China, where security will be extremely tight. This […]

Rationalism is Bleak

Today has been another magnificent day in Chengdu. I am sitting in the Bookworm, a fine place to ease back and read/write be smart with myself and I am using my OWN computer. For the past three weeks, I have been using any computer I could because I lost my damn power source while up […]

Its goin down

it has struck me — and perhaps not only me — how intense things are becoming this year. The race in the US between the two democrats threatens to tire everyone out by the time the real election arrives and the protests in China threaten to cast a pallor over the games months before they […]

what are they thinkin?

I wrote a column a ways back about the “real China” and how the world would get a glimpse of it this summer during the Olympics. We laowai are already getting a taste. Visas are a constant source of anxiety. Not nearly as bad as it is in the US for my homies from India […]

faded

I am just a few short miles from Aba, where the Tibetans burned down a police station last week. Since that incident it has been mostly quiet. This is a big tourist area and the troubles do not seem to have affected business much. Busloads of Cantonese rumble through daily, honking, yapping and taking funny […]