A pair of small yellow-glazed dishes, Marks and period of Guangxu (1875-1908)   

A pair of small yellow-glazed dishes, Marks and period of Guangxu (1875-1908)


Lot 707. A pair of small yellow-glazed dishes, Marks and period of Guangxu (1875-1908); 10.8 cm, 4 1/4  in. Estimate 20,000 — 30,000 HKD. Lot sold 25,000 HKD. Photo: Sotheby's. 

each covered overall save for the foot ring with a translucent yolk-yellow glaze, the base with a six-character reign mark in aubergine enamel 

Sotheby's. Chinese Art, Hong Kong, 01 Jun 2017  


          A red-glazed dish, Seal mark and period of Qianlong (1736-1795)   

A red-glazed dish, Seal mark and period of Qianlong (1736-1795)


Lot 721. A red-glazed dish, Seal mark and period of Qianlong (1736-1795); 20.5 cm, 8 1/8  in. Estimate 30,000 — 50,000 HKD. Lot sold 50,000 HKD. Photo: Sotheby's. 

with the shallow rounded sides rising from a tapered foot, covered overall with a deep red glaze, the base inscribed with a six-character seal mark in underglaze blue

Sotheby's. Chinese Art, Hong Kong, 01 Jun 2017   


          An incised yellow-glazed 'Dragon' dish, Seal mark and period of Daoguang (1821-1850)   

An incised yellow-glazed 'Dragon' dish, Seal mark and period of Daoguang (1821-1850)


Lot 706. An incised yellow-glazed 'Dragon' dish, Seal mark and period of Daoguang (1821-1850); 13.9 cm, 5 1/2  in. Estimate 20,000 — 30,000 HKD. Lot sold 50,000 HKD. Photo: Sotheby's. 

finely incised to the interior with a pair of dragons contesting a 'flaming pearl', the exterior with cranes amidst clouds, covered overall with a translucent egg-yellow glaze, the base with a six-character seal mark in black enamel

Sotheby's. Chinese Art, Hong Kong, 01 Jun 2017  


          A pair of aubergine-glazed dishes, marks and period of Guangxu (1875-1908)   

A pair of aubergine-glazed dishes, marks and period of Guangxu (1875-1908)


Lot 720. A pair of aubergine-glazed dishes, marks and period of Guangxu (1875-1908); 18.3 cm, 7 1/4  in. Estimate 20,000 — 30,000 HKD. Lot sold 56,250 HKD. Photo: Sotheby's. 

each with a tapered foot and a slightly flared rim, covered overall with a pale aubergine glaze, the base with a six-character reign mark in underglaze blue 

Sotheby's. Chinese Art, Hong Kong, 01 Jun 2017 


          A blue-glazed bottle vase, mark and period of Guangxu (1875-1908)   

A blue-glazed bottle vase, mark and period of Guangxu (1875-1908)


Lot 693. A blue-glazed bottle vase, mark and period of Guangxu (1875-1908); 38.6 cm, 15 1/4  in. Estimate 20,000 — 30,000 HKD. Lot sold 56,250 HKD. Photo: Sotheby's. 

with a tall neck and a flared rim, covered overall save for the foot rim with a deep purplish-blue glaze, the base with a six-character reign mark in underglaze blue 

Sotheby's. Chinese Art, Hong Kong, 01 Jun 2017

          Những sự kiện nổi bật tại Hong Kong từ khi được trả về Trung Quốc   

          20 năm Hong Kong trở về Trung Quốc   

          China's Xi sees 'challenges' in Hong Kong as Beijing dismisses any UK role   
HONG KONG (Reuters) - Chinese President Xi Jinping, visiting Hong Kong for the 20th anniversary of its return to Chinese rule, said on Friday the city's "one country, two systems" formula faces "new challenges" as pro-democracy campaigners ramped up their protests.

          China flexes military muscle during Xi visit to Hong Kong   
Mr Xi rode in an open-top military vehicle past rows of soldiers lined up on an airstrip on his visit to the People’s Liberation Army garrison.
          La ciudad más cara del mundo está en un país subdesarrollado   
Luanda supera a Hong Kong como la capital con precios más exorbitantes
          Hong Kong: rilasciati attivisti   
Fermati mercoledì per le proteste per anniversario ex colonia
          Then and now: 28 fascinating early images of Hong Kong   
          Comment on A postcard from the past: Shaw House and Lido by N Narayanan   
Thanks again Mr Jerome Lim, for this latest post on Orchard Road. Like the proverbial bad penny, here I turn up again (please feel free not to put up my comments if for any reason they are unwelcome, but believe me they are made purely as incidental to your commentary) 'A nation of shopkeepers' is reportedly a not-too-complimentary phrase referring to England going back to 1794 (Wikipedia). Much in the same vein, one could say we Singaporeans could be dubbed 'a nation of shoppers'. 'Orchard Road' is apparently the 'flavour of the moment' with pleas being made 'to restore the vibrancy of the area', mainly by those whose memories &/or experiences go back to more recent times. True, their attitudes may be reflected in the phrase 'Orchard Road, Singapore: Asia's Most Famous Shopping Street ..." as one description goes. But time was when it was less 'glitzy' and a more sedate and respectable upper-middle-class residential area, as would be fitting for its proximity to the 'Governor's House' - in colonial times - and 'The Istana - President's Residence' since Independence. In sharp contrast, Orchard Road has today earned the distinction of being 'Every Shopper's Paradise', with much of the credit being accorded to those who have developed the area. While giving them their due, I personally find it sad that in this context, all-forgotten now is my then-boss the late Mr Moshe J Nassim, founder of the Auctioneers & Estate Agents firm 'Nassim & Co Ltd'. Circa 1950 he persuaded the Hongkong Bank to buy the land where MacDonald House now stands, confidently assuring them 'Orchard Road will be the place of future Singapore'.He was eminently qualified in his observations, as he had been resident in the area from pre-WWII years. Surely Mr Nassim needs to be remembered for his foresight. In property matters, he was largely responsble in opening up the then undeveloped ulu areas of Frankel Estate, Loyang and Sarimbun. Returning to 'Orchard Road, quite by accident, I just stumbled upon a video blog titled 'Singapore in 1956' - MichaelRogge. 'Published on Jun 19, 2013 -- Singapore as a world port more than half a century ago. I see bankers walking around in white tropical suits as I did myself at the time in Hong Kong...' (Source/Link: ) The clear views of the Orchard Road/Dhoby Ghaut corner are stunning, as too Union Building (now Tung Centre) at Collyer Quay, and these, along with others in the clip, will surely evoke nostalgic memories in those who were here in Singapore more than six decades back. For a more recent appreciative view, this post (http://www.visitsingapore.com/see-do-singapore/places-to-see/orchard.html) sums up:- ''Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned shopper, Orchard Road, a 2.2km shopping belt, is the place for retail therapy. 'Who'd have thought that over 150 years ago, Orchard Road was just a small lane lined with fruit orchards, nutmeg plantations and pepper farms. A look back By the 1850s, these humble origins had changed. People moved in, along with outdoor hawker centres, wet markets, cemeteries, temples, and even an open-air laundry basin. It was only in 1903 that Orchard Road’s shops sprung up, with Singapore's first supermarket, where The Centrepoint now stands. The first department store was opened by local merchant C.K Tang in 1958 on a plot of land facing a cemetery. When it was demolished in 1982, it was replaced by the landmark Tang Plaza, which houses a local department store and hotel. In the 1970s, cinemas, a bowling alley and ever larger malls followed, and Orchard Road’s reputation as an entertainment hub grew. Spoilt for choice Today, Orchard Road is flanked by iconic shopping malls, restaurants and hotels, choc-a-bloc with retail, dining and entertainment choice for every taste and budget. Designer threads, fast fashion, upscale restaurants, ethnic wares, art galleries and relaxed hangouts – you name it, Orchard Road has it. Here’s a tip: while the almond and jambu trees are no more, huge angsana trees lining the large pedestrian mall give ample shade from the blazing sun – making this still a nice place to stroll'''' Thanks for the memories!
           Clubhouse Mongkok Skypark / concrete    

Within the bustling streets of Mongkok, Hong Kong concrete created a welcoming clubhouse for all residents of the Skypark tower.

          Hong Kong anniversary: 10 essential things to do in the city 20 years after the handover   
As Hong Kong celebrates its 20th anniversary of being handed back to China, local Cathy Adams gives her guide to island life today
          Hong Kong protesters are fighting for the rights Britain assured them   
Tomorrow marks 20 years since Hong Kong was returned to China under an agreement that allowed the city state to remain independent, but now Beijing is slowly asphyxiating the city's political freedom
          The Hong Kong-built junk that was once Ripley’s, believe it or not   
How stories about the Mon Lei, which served several owners in its lifetime, including Robert Ripley of Ripley’s Believe It or Not! fame, took on a life of their own
          Opium and bananas banned for Hong Kong military parade   
Hong Kong (AFP) - Opium, umbrellas and fruit were all banned for reporters covering Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to a military parade Friday, on a peculiarly exhaustive list of items considered too dangerous to bring along.
          Abercrombie's (ANF) New Concept Store Goes to Hong Kong   
Abercrombie amp Fitch Co ANF continues to focus on improving its business One of the company s core initiatives is to expand international operations to revive growth The company s aim on international expansion came to limelight with the announcement of launching a new store concept in
          Un plan FANTEZIST sau nu? Asgardia – primul stat care va exista în afara planetei Pământ   
O organizatie privata numita Asgardia si-a anuntat in mod oficial in cadrul unei conferinte de presa din Hong Kong intentia de a fonda prima natiune care va exista in afara planetei Pamant. Asgardia va...
          Michelin Guide 2017 Includes Imperial Treasure, Garibaldi, And Cheek By Jowl   
Michelin guide 2017 - feature1

Michelin Guide 2017 includes 11 newly awarded restaurants Odette received two stars in this year’s Michelin Guide. The bulk of this year’s list of Bib Gourmand restaurants is made up of the same spots as last year’s inaugural list, so we were expecting the Michelin Guide 2017 to be same same but different compared to the Michelin Guide 2016 too. Well, in the list that just came out, 11 new names were awarded one Michelin star, and two restaurants – Forest 森 and Terra – dropped out of this year’s guide. The rest are pretty much the same as last year’s, with Waku Ghin getting two stars instead of one this time.  Here are all the restaurants that were awarded tonight, with the newcomers in bold. Restaurants with one Michelin star Alma by Juan Amador, modern European Beni, modern French Braci, Italian Candlenut, Peranakan Cheek By Jowl, modern Australian Chef Kang’s Kitchen, Chinese (Cantonese) Corner House, contemporary Crystal Jade Golden Palace, Chinese Cut, Steakhouse Garibaldi, Italian Hill Street Tai Hwa Pork Noodle, street food Iggy’s, modern European Jaan, modern French Imperial Treasure Fine Teochew Cuisine, Chinese (Teochew) Labyrinth, modern Singaporean Lei Garden, Chinese Liao Fan Hong Kong Soya Sauce Chicken Rice & […]

The post Michelin Guide 2017 Includes Imperial Treasure, Garibaldi, And Cheek By Jowl appeared first on EatBook.sg.

          Young People Have Their Say About the Future of Hong Kong   
Twenty years after the handover from British rule, people born in Chinese Hong Kong have an increasing voice in its future.
          Tensions high in Hong Kong ahead of handover anniversary   

Hong Kong will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the handover from British to Chinese rule today, as Chinese President Xi Jinping visits the territory for the first time as head of state.

          China's Xi sees 'challenges' in Hong Kong as Beijing dismisses any UK role   
HONG KONG (Reuters) - Chinese President Xi Jinping, visiting Hong Kong for the 20th anniversary of its return to Chinese rule, said on Friday the city's "one country, two systems" formula faces "new challenges" as pro-democracy campaigners ramped up their protests.

          Hong Kong residents wary of future, 20 years after handover   

Twenty years ago this week Hong Kong was handed back from British to Chinese rule — but many locals and long-term residents are wary of what it has become, and fear for its future.

          LipoSeuticals closes Series A for novel drug delivery tech   

LipoSeuticals said today that it closed a financing round for an undisclosed amount led by Hong Kong-based life sciences fund, Delos Capital. The company has developed a sugar-lipid polymer-based formulation, Sulocence, which boosts drug stability and solubility. LipoSeuticals said it is applying the drug delivery technology to the reformulation of an array of marketed specialty drugs. […]

The post LipoSeuticals closes Series A for novel drug delivery tech appeared first on MassDevice.

          China says legally binding Hong Kong handover treaty with Britain has 'no practical significance'   
          Xi Jinping asserts Chinese control over Hong Kong at military parade   
          Great Britain & Hong Kong: 175 years through the lens   
          Military parade in Hong Kong after 20 years of Chinese rule, in pictures   
          Abercrombie's (ANF) New Concept Store Goes to Hong Kong   
Abercrombie amp Fitch Co ANF continues to focus on improving its business One of the company s core initiatives is to expand international operations to revive growth The company s aim on international expansion came to limelight with the announcement of launching a new store concept in
          Laatste Britse kolonie teruggegeven aan China   

Hong Kong 1997- Op zijn hoogtepunt rond 1900 telde het Britse Rijk een kwart van de wereldbevolking. Op ieder continent hadden de Britten grondgebied. Hong Kong was de laatste Britse kolonie die in 1997 werd overgedragen.

Het bericht Laatste Britse kolonie teruggegeven aan China verscheen eerst op IsGeschiedenis.

          Hong Kong gears up for 20th anniversary of handover   
Pro-democracy campaigners prepare to protest as Chinese President Xi Jinping vists Hong Kong for the 20th anniversary of the city's return to Chinese rule.

          China flexes military muscle during Xi visit to Hong Kong   
Mr Xi rode in an open-top military vehicle past rows of soldiers lined up on an airstrip on his visit to the People’s Liberation Army garrison.
          Xi Jinping marca el paso a Hong Kong   
Tras visitar una guarnición militar, el presidente chino reclama al territorio que "crea en China"
          Hong Kong afronta el cambio de su modelo económico   
Gran parte de la sociedad ve con recelo la influencia financiera cada vez mayor de China en la ex colonia
          La ciudad más cara del mundo está en un país subdesarrollado   
Luanda supera a Hong Kong como la capital con precios más exorbitantes
          20 años de la entrega de Hong Kong a China   
Hong Kong conmemorará el 20 aniversario de su entrega a China por parte de la autoridad británica
          La voz de la resistencia democrática de Hong Kong   
Joshua Wong, detenido este miércoles durante 33 horas, asegura que si se quedaran de brazos cruzados la excolonia británica sería otra ciudad cualquiera de China
          Los dos Hong Kong a través de la familia Hui   
La brecha en el seno de una familia ilustra la división generacional que marca el 20 aniversario de la devolución de la colonia
DasCoin – nowa rewolucyjna kryptowaluta oparta o najnowsze technologie oraz gotowy i sprawdzony system płatności. DasCoin jest kryptowalutą Hong Kongu. Geneza rozpoczyna się w 2007 roku. CoinLeaders posiada licencje umożliwiające nabycie DasCoin’a i są oferowane przez CL Singapore Pte. Ltd z siedzibą w Singapurze. CL Singapur jest licencjonowanym dostawcą usług sieciowych dla DasCoin i jest wyłącznym dystrybutorem licencji związanych z DasCoin Czym jest Licencja Netleaders? Licencja Netleaders jest dokumentem potwierdzającym zakupienie jednej z licencji. Będziesz mógł wtedy otrzymać hybrydową kryptowalutę, która zacznie być tworzona w procesie zwanym „minting”. Proces ten rozpoczyna się już w I kwartale 2017 roku
           UPDATE 3-Race to buy $10 bln-valued GLP narrows down to two groups -sources    
By Anshuman Daga and Kane WuSINGAPORE/HONG KONG, June 30 (Reuters) - The race to buy Global Logistic Properties narrowed to between a Chinese consortium...
           China says Hong Kong handover agreement 'no longer relevant'    
In the midst of celebrations marking 20 years since Britain returned Hong Kong to China, Beijing declared that the document which initiated the handover "is...
           Tight security in Hong Kong as Xi leads celebrations    
Tight security contained protesters in Hong Kong Friday night as China's President Xi Jinping led lavish celebrations to mark 20 years since the politically...
          Mango Mango bringing more dessert to St. Mark's Place   

Signage has arrived upstairs at 19-21 St. Mark's Place between Second Avenue and Third Avenue for Mango Mango, a dessert shop with multiple locations that launched in Chinatown in 2013.

Here's more about them via their website:

The aspect of our business is to serve traditional Hong Kong style sweet soup dessert to modern fusion sweets. We use the finest ingredients and a sophisticated method of cooking to create innovative handmade desserts to serve our customers. Most of our desserts are made with mango from the soup base to the pastries and drinks that we cater to our customers. Mangos are liked by all ages because of the sweetness that it brings and provides 100% of vitamin C.

The space adjacent to the Chipotle and above St. Mark's Market was previously home to Beyond Vape, which went up in smoke closed in January.
           China says Sino-British Joint Declaration on Hong Kong no longer has meaning    
BEIJING/LONDON, June 30 (Reuters) - China said on Friday the joint declaration with Britain over Hong Kong, which laid the blueprint over how the city...
          Cinedigm Sells Majority Stake to Hong Kong's Bison Capital for $40M   

Bison will buy 20 million newly issued shares of Cinedigm for up to $30 million and provide as much as $10 million in working capital.

read more

          The Guardian view on Hong Kong: Britain has a duty to defend its freedoms | Editorial   
As the region marks 20 years since its return to China, there is rightly concern about its future

It is 20 years since Hong Kong returned to China. Now as then, there is trepidation. In his first visit as Chinese leader, Xi Jinping has overseen a military parade – a reminder of Beijing’s might – and warned of “new challenges” to the “one country, two systems” framework which allows a high degree of autonomy for the region. On Friday, the foreign ministry described the Joint Declaration, the Sino-British treaty on those arrangements, as a historical document which no longer had practical significance.

Britain’s seizure of Hong Kong is a key part of China’s narrative of a century of humiliation by imperialist foreign powers, ended by the Communist party’s triumph. (Its belief that the west is determined to rain on its parade will be reinforced by the US announcements of sanctions on a Chinese bank linked to North Korea and arms sales to Taiwan just as Mr Xi arrived in the region for the anniversary celebrations.)

Continue reading...
           China Vanke's largest shareholder says will not interfere in operations    
By Clare JimHONG KONG, June 30 (Reuters) - China Vanke Co's largest shareholder, Shenzhen Metro Group, said it would not interfere in the property...
           China flexes military muscle in Hong Kong during Xi's visit    
HONG KONG (AP) - President Xi Jinping inspected troops based in Hong Kong on Friday as he asserted China's authority over the former British colony, where...
           China's Xi sees "challenges" in Hong Kong as Beijing dismisses any UK role    
By Greg Torode and Venus WuHONG KONG, June 30 (Reuters) - Chinese President Xi Jinping, visiting Hong Kong for the 20th anniversary of its return to ...
          Hong Kong: A two-stage economic experiment   
Post-war Hong Kong delivered one of the most dramatic improvements in living standards in history, a transformation regarded by Milton Friedman as an experiment in the potential impact of economic freedom on economic growth. This column assesses the contribution of one key official – finance minister Sir John Cowperthwaite – whose laissez-faire approach of ‘positive non-interventionism’, much admired by Friedman, underpinned that success. It also explores, 20 years on from the handover to China, whether a second stage of the Hong Kong economic experiment might be in progress, perhaps leading to faltering freedom and faltering growth.
          Jackie Chan helps kick off Hong Kong Airline’s arrival in Vancouver   
Hong Kong Airlines landed its inaugural flight into North America in Vancouver on Friday with action movie star Jackie Chan on hand to help boost the airline’s profile. The airline, which will stage daily flights between Vancouver and Hong Kong, has enlisted Chan as its brand ambassador, although he didn’t speak to media or fans […]
          6/30/2017: WORLD: Chinese president’s visit sparks protests   

HONG KONG— Chinese President Xi Jinping landed in Hong Kong Thursday to mark the 20th anniversary of Beijing taking control of the former British colony, accompanied by a formidable layer of security as authorities showed little patience for...
          Chinese Ways of Empire, Then and Now – New York Times   
New York Times Chinese Ways of Empire, Then and NowNew York TimesPresident Xi Jinping of China gave a speech shortly after his arrival in Hong Kong yesterday. Credit Sheng Jiapeng/China News Service, via Vcg, via Getty Images. This July 1 … Continue reading
          Housing price woes in Hong Kong    
Hong Kongers weigh in on the city's exorbitant housing prices and cost of living ahead of the 20th anniversary of its handover from British rule.
          Xi Jinping inspecciona las tropas en Hong Kong. Las protestas de los activistas   

En el desfile militar también participaron soldados de Shenzhen. Miembros de Demosisto se encadenan en el monumento de la bauhinia. Vigilia por la liberación de Liu Xiaobo. Fueron arrestados 26 activistas, y luego se procedió a liberarlos.

Since 1997 Handover Communist Chinese Allow Hong Kong to Prosper While US Democrats Destroy Major US Cities
          AEE 140: Three Pro Tips on How to Start Your Presentation in English with Carl Kwan   

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Get our free IELTS video training course

Do you have to make presentations in English sometimes?

Do you know how to start your presentation in English?

Today you’ll find out 3 awesome tips from our guest Carl Kwan!

Carl has been on our show a few times this year!

He is a presentation expert and he told us why it’s important to know your audience when you present and how to end your English presentation.

Today he’s here to show you how to get your presentation started!


3 Ways to Start your Presentation in English:

  • Start with a surprising fact: After you state the interesting or surprising fact, tell people what they should do with it. This gets their attention and this makes it easy for you to show them what they are going to learn. This is a more effective way to start than saying your name or “thanks for coming to my presentation.”
  • Use a story: Talk about what you were doing at a specific time when you thought about your presentation topic. For example, “Recently I was having a conversation with a friend when she told me about a really interesting method she is using to learn English.” With this strategy you should use a time reference. Talk about a situation and the action that was going on at the time. Use the word “when.” Using “when” is a good way to introduce the topic that you are about to talk about. This will get your audience interested.
  • Use a question to talk about a problem and your solution: Start by asking “have you ever…?” Then say, “well, here’s…” Here is an example from Carl: “Have you ever wondered how you can use CNN to learn English? Well here’s a 5-step process for using CNN to learn English.” To do this you have to know your audience and your question has to speak to them.


Carl Kwan is a presentations, video and marketing consultant with an MBA who also has over 10 years experience as an ESL teacher.

Carl was born in Hong Kong and immigrated to Vancouver, Canada at age 3. Like many immigrants, his parents always struggled with English.

This eventually led him to pursue teaching English to help people like his mom and dad.

Since 2009 he has produced presentations videos. Currently, his YouTube Channel has more than 120 videos on presentations.


Carl lives in Seoul, South Korea with his wife and son. He offers presentations workshops and consulting, he produces live and animated videos for business owners and works as a professional voice actor and radio personality.

He believes that everyone deserves a chance at success. To learn more about Carl, please visit his website at www.carlkwan.com, check out his videos on YouTube or connect with him on LinkedIn.

Here is Carl’s most recent website: Carl’s English

And check out his photos on Instagram at instagram.com/thecarlkwan.


Have you tried any of these techniques?

How did it work? Let us know!

Do you feel confident when you present in English?

          China’s Xi says Hong Kong’s ‘one country, two system’ formula faces ‘new challenges’   
Xi added these issues should be handled correctly and analyzed rationally, and that he remained confident in the city.
          For sale - Vintage 1970s wrestling singlet Red M Logo olympic... - Auction   

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          Comment on This is What Normal People Do While We’re Hacking Spring Break by Hong Kong 20th, United New Everyday, James Polk Never Rests - Rapid Travel Chai   
[…] This is what normal people do while we’re hacking spring break. […]
          PRECIOUS-Gold edges down as hawkish central banks weigh   

* Gold set for first monthly fall in 2017; up 8 pct in H1 * Palladium prices surged 25 pct this year, best year since2010 (Recasts, updates prices, adds quote) By Vijaykumar Vedala BENGALURU, June 30 (Reuters) - Gold inched lower on Fridayas hawkish comments from major central banks suggested a shifttoward tighter monetary policies, while the dollar nursed itslosses. Comments from top central bankers including European CentralBank head Mario Draghi, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney,and top policymakers at the Bank of Canada earlier this weekhave indicated that quantitative easing is being put back in itsbox and interest rates are going to go up. Gold is highly sensitive to rising interest rates, whichincrease the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion.However, losses in the dollar, in which it is priced, have beenoffsetting the impact of higher yields to keep gold range-bound. Spot gold fell 0.2 percent to $1,242.56 per ounce, asof 0736 GMT. U.S. gold futures for August delivery weredown 0.3 percent at $1,242.60 per ounce. Gold slid nearly 2 percent in June in its first monthlydecline this year, but gained about 8 percent so far in 2017. Gold has been range-bound between $1,243-$1,248, and appearsto be lacking a catalyst for price action in any direction, MKSPAMP analyst Tim Brown said in a note. "Central banks seem to be moving toward a more hawkish viewand the resulting rise in the bond yield curve is puttingdownward pressure on gold prices." On Thursday, Germany's 10-year government bond yield rose toa seven-week high, and benchmark U.S. Treasury yields touched six-week highs on the likelihood that central banks in Europewill become less accommodative. "Central banks worldwide are going to have some kind of lessstimulative economic policies. About the pace of their exitstrategies, the only question is regarding the matter of degreeand not the direction itself," said Mark To, head of research atHong Kong's Wing Fung Financial Group. In the wider markets, the dollar index , whichmeasures the greenback against a basket of currencies, was up0.1 percent after hitting a nine-month low at 95.470 on Friday.Asian shares were pulled down by weaker European and U.S.markets. Among other precious metals, silver is up 4 percent for theyear despite having shed over 9 percent in the second quarter.Spot silver slipped 0.2 percent to $16.55 per ounce onFriday. Platinum dipped 0.2 percent to $917.90, and slippednearly 3 percent this quarter, but is up about 2 percent for theyear. Palladium , which has been the best performingprecious metal this year, dipped 0.4 percent to $844 per ounce.The metal surged nearly 25 percent this year, and is poised tohave its best year since 2010. (Additional reporting by Nithin Prasad in Bengaluru; Editing byRichard Pullin and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

          Dollar despairs on hawkish central banks, Asia stocks join global slump   

By Nichola Saminather

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - The dollar extended its losses on Friday as major central banks signalled that the era of cheap money was coming to an end in a boon to sterling, the euro and the Canadian dollar, while Asian shares were hit by dismal performances of European and U.S. markets.

European markets were set to open a little lower, with financial spreadbetter LCG expecting Britain's FTSE 100, Germany's DAX and France's CAC 40 to all start the day down 0.1 percent. All three lost between 0.5 percent and 1.9 percent on Thursday.

But global stock market indexes are set for more gains by the end of this year, driven by an economic revival in Europe and bright prospects for much of Asia, a Reuters poll of around 300 financial professionals showed.

The dollar index fell 0.1 percent to 95.549, poised for a 1.8 percent slide this week, having fallen in all sessions but one. It is down 1.4 percent for the month, and 4.8 percent for the quarter.

The Korean won weakened against the dollar after the country reported industrial production rose by 0.2 percent in May from a month earlier, missing expectations for growth of 1.5 percent. That followed a 2.2 percent decline in April

The dollar was up 0.1 percent at 1,142.5 won.

But the greenback remained lower against other major currencies. Adding to the dollar's weakness against the yen was data showing Japanese core consumer prices rose 0.4 percent in May from a year earlier in its fifth straight month of gains, although inflation remains well below the central bank's 2 percent target.

The dollar fell 0.25 percent to 111.95 yen, after losing 0.2 percent on Thursday. It was heading for a 1.2 percent gain for the month, but is down 4.2 percent this year.

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney surprised many on Wednesday by conceding a rate hike was likely to be needed as the economy came closer to running at full capacity.

Sterling was 0.1 percent higher on Friday at $1.3017, adding to Thursday's 0.6 percent gain.

Two top policymakers at the Bank of Canada also suggested they might tighten monetary policy there as early as July.

The dollar slipped 0.15 percent to C$1.2984, extending Thursday's 0.26 percent loss.

Despite comments by sources that European Central Bank President Mario Draghi had intended to signal tolerance for a period of weaker inflation, not an imminent policy tightening, the euro on Friday revisited the 13-month high of $1.1445 hit on Thursday.

The euro remained close to that level and was at $1.1439 on Friday, retaining most of Thursday's 0.6 percent gain.

"Obviously there's a shift afoot. It really seems that there's some coordinated effort going on out here among the G10 central banks," said Stephen Innes, head of trading in Asia-Pacific for OANDA in Singapore, referring to the series of hawkish-sounding comments on monetary policy.

In stocks, the MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.7 percent, after hitting a two-year high on Thursday. It is up 5.3 percent for the quarter and has risen 18.3 percent this year.

The negative sentiment infected Chinese shares despite surveys showing activity in the country's manufacturing and services sector accelerated in June from the previous month. Manufacturers appeared to enjoy strong external demand, as new orders and production rose at a solid pace.

The CSI 300 index fell 0.3 percent, while the Shanghai Composite slipped 0.1 percent.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng slid 0.9 percent.

Japan's Nikkei tumbled 1.2 percent, shrinking its monthly gain to 1.7 percent. It is up 4.5 percent this year.

Overnight, the tech-heavy Nasdaq led declines on Wall Street with a 1.4 percent loss. The Nasdaq is poised to post a 0.9 percent loss for the month, but is still up 14 percent this year.

The drop in tech stocks overnight was due to a rotation into bank shares, which have lagged this year, after the biggest U.S. banks revealed buyback and dividend plans that beat analysts' expectations after the Fed approved their capital proposals in its annual stress test program.

The S&P financials index rose as much as 2 percent overnight, while the S&P technology index fell as much as 2.7 percent.

In commodities, oil prices continued their recovery this week on a decline in weekly U.S. crude production.

U.S. crude added 0.7 percent to $45.15 a barrel in its seventh straight session of gains, bringing its weekly increase to 5.05 percent, and narrowing its quarterly loss to 10.75 percent.

Global benchmark Brent gained 0.6 percent to $47.67 a barrel, poised to post a 9.8 percent for the quarter.

The dollar's weakness this year has been a boon for gold, which is up 8.25 percent in the same period. It was up 0.1 percent at $1,246.46 an ounce on Friday.

(Reporting by Nichola Saminather; Additional reporting by Masayuki Kitano; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Christian Schmollinger)

          GLOBAL MARKETS-Dollar despairs on hawkish central banks, Asia stocks join global slump   

* Dollar slides versus peers on hawkish global central banks

* European stocks poised for slightly lower open

* Poll shows global stocks set for further gains this year

* Asia ex-Japan, Nikkei fall on risk aversion but up forquarter

* China stocks drop despite solid manufacturing, servicesPMIs

* Oil posts 7th session of gains on decline in U.S. crudesupplies

By Nichola Saminather

SINGAPORE, June 30 (Reuters) - The dollar extended itslosses on Friday as major central banks signalled that the eraof cheap money was coming to an end in a boon to sterling, theeuro and the Canadian dollar, while Asian shares were hit bydismal performances of European and U.S. markets.

European markets were set to open a little lower, withfinancial spreadbetter LCG expecting Britain's FTSE 100,Germany's DAX and France's CAC 40 to all startthe day down 0.1 percent. All three lost between 0.5 percentand 1.9 percent on Thursday.

But global stock market indexes are set for more gains bythe end of this year, driven by an economic revival in Europeand bright prospects for much of Asia, a Reuters poll of around300 financial professionals showed.

The dollar index fell 0.1 percent to 95.549, poisedfor a 1.8 percent slide this week, having fallen in all sessionsbut one. It is down 1.4 percent for the month, and 4.8 percentfor the quarter.

The Korean won weakened against the dollar after the countryreported industrial production rose by 0.2 percent in May from amonth earlier, missing expectations for growth of 1.5 percent.That followed a 2.2 percent decline in April

The dollar was up 0.1 percent at 1,142.5 won.

But the greenback remained lower against other majorcurrencies. Adding to the dollar's weakness against the yen wasdata showing Japanese core consumer prices rose 0.4 percent inMay from a year earlier in its fifth straight month of gains,although inflation remains well below the central bank's 2percent target.

The dollar fell 0.25 percent to 111.95 yen, after losing 0.2percent on Thursday. It was heading for a 1.2 percent gain forthe month, but is down 4.2 percent this year.

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney surprised many onWednesday by conceding a rate hike was likely to be needed asthe economy came closer to running at full capacity.

Sterling was 0.1 percent higher on Friday at$1.3017, adding to Thursday's 0.6 percent gain.

Two top policymakers at the Bank of Canada also suggestedthey might tighten monetary policy there as early as July.

The dollar slipped 0.15 percent to C$1.2984,extending Thursday's 0.26 percent loss.

Despite comments by sources that European Central BankPresident Mario Draghi had intended to signal tolerance for aperiod of weaker inflation, not an imminent policy tightening,the euro on Friday revisited the 13-month high of $1.1445 hit onThursday.

The euro remained close to that level and was at$1.1439 on Friday, retaining most of Thursday's 0.6 percentgain.

"Obviously there's a shift afoot. It really seems thatthere's some coordinated effort going on out here among the G10central banks," said Stephen Innes, head of trading inAsia-Pacific for OANDA in Singapore, referring to the series ofhawkish-sounding comments on monetary policy.

In stocks, the MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific sharesoutside Japan fell 0.7 percent, after hitting atwo-year high on Thursday. It is up 5.3 percent for the quarterand has risen 18.3 percent this year.

The negative sentiment infected Chinese shares despitesurveys showing activity in the country's manufacturing andservices sector accelerated in June from the previous month.Manufacturers appeared to enjoy strong external demand, as neworders and production rose at a solid pace.

The CSI 300 index fell 0.3 percent, while theShanghai Composite slipped 0.1 percent.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng slid 0.9 percent.

Japan's Nikkei tumbled 1.2 percent, shrinking itsmonthly gain to 1.7 percent. It is up 4.5 percent this year.

Overnight, the tech-heavy Nasdaq led declines onWall Street with a 1.4 percent loss. The Nasdaq is poised topost a 0.9 percent loss for the month, but is still up 14percent this year.

The drop in tech stocks overnight was due to a rotation intobank shares, which have lagged this year, after the biggest U.S.banks revealed buyback and dividend plans that beat analysts'expectations after the Fed approved their capital proposals inits annual stress test program.

The S&P financials index rose as much as 2 percentovernight, while the S&P technology index fell as muchas 2.7 percent.

In commodities, oil prices continued their recovery thisweek on a decline in weekly U.S. crude production.

U.S. crude added 0.7 percent to $45.15 a barrel inits seventh straight session of gains, bringing its weeklyincrease to 5.05 percent, and narrowing its quarterly loss to10.75 percent.

Global benchmark Brent gained 0.6 percent to $47.67a barrel, poised to post a 9.8 percent for the quarter.

The dollar's weakness this year has been a boon for gold,which is up 8.25 percent in the same period. It was up 0.1percent at $1,246.46 an ounce on Friday.

(Reporting by Nichola Saminather; Additional reporting byMasayuki Kitano; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and ChristianSchmollinger)

          Book Review: Changes in Latitudes   
Changes in Latitudes
By: Jen Malone
Published By: HarperTeen
Publication Date: July 25, 2017
Page Count: 384
Buy it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or IndieBound
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher via Edelweiss
Audience: Young Adult - Contemporary

Cass has had a rough few months as she struggles to understand her parents' divorce and the implications it has on her future. How could her happy family have fallen apart? After overhearing a heated argument between her parents, she begins to lay blame for the dissolution of her family solely at the mother's feet. Rather than discussing what she overheard, Cass plunges forward into her hurt and anger, pushing her mother further and further away with every turn. Mother and daughter relationships can be complicated, but this one is more strained than usual.

Cass finally is forced to confront her emotions about everything when her father takes a teaching job in Hong Kong and her mother decides to take Cass and her younger brother, Drew, on a trip sailing from Coastal Oregon down to Mexico. Cass will be gone for at least four months which means she will miss summer road trips with her best friends, working at the ice cream shop, and beginning her Senior year with everyone else in the fall. Instead, Cass will be living on a sailboat in close proximity with her mother and brother dealing with online homeschool, the ruthless whims of the ocean, and no chance of escape. There is no such thing as alone time on a sailboat. Cass is furious that her mother made such a monumental decision without even consulting her children, but she has no choice but to tag along as their home in Oregon has been rented out to a visiting professor.

Cass reluctantly packs her bag, says her goodbyes, and hopes that her garden will be well tended in her absence. She boards the sailboat with a heavy heart and a bad attitude. Things don't get much better for Cass once things get underway. Her brother takes to sailing like a gull takes to the breeze, but Cass refuses to learn anything about her floating home. Rather than make the best of her situation, she chooses to wallow in her self pity and keep focusing on what she's leaving behind. She can't see what she might be moving towards. Even meeting the others in their small sailing convoy isn't truly enough to get Cass in the right frame of mind.

A deckhand with sticky fingers will change the course of Cass' summer and help her get some new perspective when one of the convoy members brings aboard Jonah as his first mate. Jonah is a handsome, intelligent college drop out who is running away from the expectations of his rich and powerful family. He decides sailing to Mexico with a family friend is a good first step in asserting his independence, but he never expects to meet someone like Cass along the way. The pair instantly hit it off, but Cass knows that due to Jonah's age and the expiration date on this trip, that getting romantically involved can only lead to heartbreak. She decides to pursue more plutonic avenues with Jonah, but will soon find that the heart wants what it wants.

After Jonah comes on the scene, Cass' mood improves significantly and she finally has a confidant for all of her emotions and concerns. Jonah helps her navigate the rocky current of her relationship with her mother and see solutions to bridge the chasm between them. I loved this pairing and was firmly in favor of Jonah from the moment he makes his appearance in the novel. Cass was always more bearable when he was around. I liked her and understood her frustration, but I did find her wallowing and whining to be a bit trying at times.

Aside from the serious relationship issues of both a romantic and familiar nature, I loved tagging along for a summer adventure and getting to take mental vacations to some exciting locales such as San Francisco, the town where The Lost Boys was filmed, and the town that inspired Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds. I have never been to California, but I can only hope that if I do go someday that I will enjoy seeing everything as much as Cass and Jonah did. This was a fun summery read with depth, romance, and some beautiful moments on the sea.

One Last Gripe: Ultimately, Cass will make or break this novel for readers. I chose to forgive her whining, but I wanted her to confront her Mom about what she heard and clear the air.

Favorite Things About The Book: I loved the various settings and the relationship between Cass and Drew

First Sentence: There are things I fully expect to encounter in my driveway.

Favorite Character: Jonah

Least Favorite Character: I didn't truly have a least favorite, but there were moments when Cass was difficult to like.

A "road" trip romance that takes place at sea!

All Cassie wants is to get some solid ground under her feet following the shock of her parents' divorce. So when she learns of her mom's plans to take Cassie and her brother, Drew, on a four-month sailing trip from Oregon to Mexico, she's stunned. There is absolutely nothing solid about the Pacific Ocean. 

Cassie is furious. And nervous. It's been hard enough keeping Drew sheltered from what Cassie knows about her mother's role in breaking their family apart, but living in such close quarters threatens to push her anger past its tipping point. Enter Jonah, a whip-smart deckhand who's as gorgeous as he is flirtatious. Cassie tries to keep him at a distance, but the more time they spend together--wandering San Francisco, riding beachside roller coasters, and exploring the California coastline--the harder it is to fight the attraction. 

​Cassie wants to let herself go, but her parents' split has left her feeling adrift in a sea of questions she can't even begin to answer. Can she forgive her mom? Will home ever feel the same? Should she take a chance on Jonah? With life's unpredictable tides working against her, Cassie must decide whether to swim against them... or dive right in.

          This is why China will want to keep Hong Kong politically stable   
Beijing will want to keep Hong Kong politically stable as the it expands its reach via the city.
          Op-Ed. Not just a bounce: The cyclical case for emerging markets equities   
Twenty years ago, the sovereignty of Hong Kong was reversed to China. Two days later, the devaluation of the Thai baht marked the start of the Asian crisis.
          Activists risk 'the end of Hong Kong' if they respond the wrong way to Beijing, experts say   
Pro-democracy camps are worried that Beijing is encroaching upon Hong Kong's way of life by suppressing rights and freedoms theoretically protected by law.
          Hong Kong is a 'test case' on whether China keeps its word: Final British governor   
Whether China honors the conditions of Hong Kong's handover agreement could be indicative of its wider foreign policy.
          Ritz-Carlton Tropical Summer Afternoon Tea By World Pastry Champion Franck Michel   

Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong makes eye-catching food – going by the images that accompany their press...

This is an original post from Luxury Trump -

Auction Type: Offer, Auction End Time: 06/30/2017 07:23 AM (PDT), Price: $1,500, Number of Bids: 0, Domain Age: 0, Description: This is a bachelorette party supply online store that has been running for 3 years. It has a lot of traction especially in the Hong Kong market. It is also the only bachelorette supplies store in Hong Kong., Traffic: 0, Valuation: $0, IsAdult: false
          IAMs’ allocations to alternatives are double those of PBs in Hong Kong   

Proof that private equity continues to be all the rage in Asia, independent asset managers (IAMs) in Hong Kong allocate nearly a third (32%) of their client assets to alternatives – more than double the level recommended by private banks, according to a survey by APB Mandate. APB Mandate’s bank-weighted asset allocation industry overview (based […]

The post IAMs’ allocations to alternatives are double those of PBs in Hong Kong appeared first on APB Mandate.

          I love malls. I hate that they’re dying. I have a suggestion: Teitel    

My soul is so suburban that when I visited the shopping mall of my youth last week (Hillcrest Mall in Richmond Hill), I nearly cried because of how much it had changed. Gone was the Mr. Sub, the Zellers, and, saddest of all, the General Store: an overpriced knick-knack shop that sold model cars and special items for left-handed people (my late Bubbie Shoshie called this the “crap store”; clearly she wasn’t the only one who felt this way).

Those who grew up in cities might be under the impression that every suburb and shopping mall is more or less the same. And perhaps to outsiders they are. But if you’re an insider — if you grew up, like I did, on a residential grid of cookie cutter houses — you don’t feel this way. In fact, it’s precisely because you weren’t spoiled with stuff to look at that you’re more attuned to the details of your environment. The sameness of the landscape sharpens your senses. As a result, you know your Indigo, your Silver City, your Kelseys restaurant and of course, your mall, like the back of your hand. (I could pick the Richmond Hill Indigo out of a lineup blindfolded.)

But no matter how well we know our suburban landmarks and defend their existence to our city-slicker friends, they are apparently not long for this world.

Read more: How neighbourhood malls are struggling to survive

According to new research published by Credit Suisse, 20 to 25 per cent of all malls in the U.S. are projected to close by the year 2022. This month, Sears Canada, a mall mainstay, announced plans to close 59 stores, a move that will result in the elimination of nearly 3000 jobs.

Retail analyst Robert Warren says there are a few major contributing factors to the demise of the North American mall: the baby boomer demographic isn’t spending at malls as often as it once did, millennial consumers want more choice — which they can find online — and TV streaming gives us more reason than ever to stay home.

But there’s something else in the mall-decline mix too. And that’s the reality that at the vast majority of North American malls, there simply isn’t enough to do. Most western shopping centres are devoted almost exclusively to retail, which means if you aren’t buying clothes or renewing your criminally overpriced cellphone plan, you don’t have much reason to stick around after you’ve run your errands.

In many parts of Asia, however, the opposite is true. This winter, I travelled throughout Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan, where I observed and participated in a mall culture totally unlike our own. Nearly every mall I visited had some element of amusement totally unrelated to the purchasing of stuff. No matter how small, every shopping centre was a miniature West Edmonton Mall, complete with at least one of the following amenities: an aquarium, an arcade, a petting zoo, a batting cage, a bowling ally, laser tag, a high-tech photo booth, a pop culture-themed restaurant, a karaoke stall and even occasionally a museum.

What’s more, it wasn’t just families with young children and teens using these amenities; they were popular with everybody, regardless of age. In East Asia, it became clear to me very quickly that there’s no shame in enjoying the recreational activities you loved as a kid well into adulthood.

Warren says Canadian shopping centres might benefit from the amusement model popular in Asian malls. He even notes that where West Edmonton Mall does well is on “the theme stuff.”

“(Asian) malls are different than ours in that they’ve turned them into entertainment locations,” Warren says. “I think with the massive population we’re (Canada) drawing in from Asia, if a mall operator started to do things like (adding more amusement) they’d draw those consumers in because it’s a bit of a touch of home for them.”

In my mind, the Asian mall model wouldn’t just attract new Canadians from Asian countries or tourists looking for a touch of home, but anyone looking for a variety of amusement in one place. Social media went wild this week with news that Cineplex opened the Rec Room in downtown Toronto — what is essentially a sprawling arcade for adults. Among the activities Torontonian millennials currently go nuts for: escape rooms, axe throwing, board game cafes and lining up for hours on Queen St. W. for something called “charcoal ice cream.”

All of these things point to the reality that millennial adults want to participate in recreational activities that don’t involve getting plastered and going to a bar or nightclub. Malls can use this desire for wholesome recreation to their advantage. Right now most of these activities are spread thin throughout the city and suburbs, often in repurposed warehouses. Why aren’t they at your local mall?

The suburban shopping centre is a town square. If you live in the suburbs, it’s where you go to see and be seen, especially in the wintertime, where the mall is pretty much the only public space you can go to and not freeze your butt off. For a lot of suburbanites, malls aren’t cultural dead zones. They’re meeting places, walking tracks and study spots. In other words, they’re hotbeds of culture. We can turn our noses up at them or we can save them. I say we save them, one arcade and board game cafe at a time. Hillcrest, I’m rooting for you.

Emma Teitel is a national affairs columnist.

          Hong Kong's Last British Governor Criticizes Beijing 20 Years After Handover   
On the anniversary of Hong Kong's return to China, Chris Patten has harsh words for Beijing's heavy-handed approach to the governance of the territory.
          Curso para estrangeiros terá aulas de português e palestras sobre cultura e história do Brasil   

Sérgio Mourão / Setes / Fotos Públicas
Visita a Ouro Preto integra programação do curso

Vinte e oito estudantes estrangeiros chegam a Belo Horizonte neste fim de semana para participar, a partir desta segunda-feira, 3, do curso Understanding Brazil, com palestras sobre geografia, economia e fundamentos do sistema político brasileiro, além de aulas de português, mostra de cinema e excursões para Ouro Preto e Inhotim.

Os estudantes são provenientes de 12 países: Alemanha, Áustria, China, incluindo Hong Kong e Taiwan, Colômbia, Peru, Coreia do Sul, Estados Unidos, Reino Unido e Sérvia.

O curso tem duas semanas de duração, com aulas ministradas em inglês, por equipe de professores de diversos departamentos da UFMG. De segunda a quinta, pela manhã, haverá palestras de conteúdos correlatos a aspectos-chave do Brasil, como política brasileira, história, relações internacionais, geografia, direito, economia, artes e cultura.

À tarde, serão ministradas aulas de português para estrangeiros e às sextas-feiras ocorrerão excursões para Ouro Preto (dia 7) e Inhotim (dia 14).

A programação inclui, ainda, mostra brasileira de cinema, seguida de debates, nos dias 5, 10 e 12, sempre às 17h, na Faculdade de Ciências Econômicas (Face). Aberta ao público, a mostra será composta dos filmes A cidade onde envelheço, dirigido por Marília Rocha (dia 5, auditório 1070), Boi Neon, dirigido por Gabriel Mascaro (dia 10, auditório 1) e O Som ao redor, dirigido por Kleber Mendonça Filho (dia 12, auditório 1).

Estudos brasileiros
Coordenador do Centro de Estudos da Ásia Oriental, o idealizador da iniciativa, professor Gilberto Libânio, explica que o curso Understanding Brazil, inédito na UFMG, pode se tornar uma semente para que estrangeiros conheçam a Universidade e o país, incentivando-os a definir o Brasil como objeto de pesquisa.

Libânio, que é docente do Departamento de Ciências Econômicas, comenta que alguns estrangeiros, ao manterem contato com aspectos diversos do país, podem se sentir estimulados a realizar estudos brasileiros, em aspectos como política, economia, direito, geografia ou história. Libânio divide a coordenação do curso com o professor Alexandre Cunha, coordenador do Centro de Estudos Europeus.

Dia 3: Uma breve história do Brasil – Junia Furtado, do Departamento de História
Dia 4: Geografia do Brasil – Roberto Luis Monte-Mór, do Departamento de Economia
Dia 5: Uma introdução à cultura brasileira – Frederico Canuto, do Departamento de Urbanismo
Dia 6: Sociedade brasileira – Corinne Davis, do Departamento de Sociologia e Antropologia
Dia 10: Legislação brasileira – Aziz Saliba, da Faculdade de Direito
Dia 11: Fundamentos do sistema político brasileiro – Bruno Reis, do Departamento de Ciência Política
Dia 12: Economia brasileira – Gustavo Britto e João Romero, do Departamento de Economia
Dia 13: Aspectos-chave das relações exteriores brasileiras – Dawisson Lopes, do Departamento de Ciência Política
Dia 14: Arte contemporânea brasileira no Inhotim – Isabela Prado, da Escola de Design da UEMG

          Elliot Smith vinner Pokerstars Championship Macau   

Det var en av de längsta heads-up matcherna i pokerns historia, men tillslut kunde kanadensaren Elliot Smith lyfta Main Event trofén i Pokerstars Championship Macau.

Smith spelade mot lokalbon Terry Tang i 10,5 timma innan han lyckades vinna turneringen genom en klassisk flipp.

Med Ess-Kung limp/synade han Terry Tangs all-in pre-flop. Tang satt på pocketsexor, och när en sexa landade på floppen såg det ut som att maratonmatchen skulle fortsätta ännu längre, men turn och rivern gav Smith fyrfärgen samt förstapriset på $370,508.

Tang fick $331,816 i tröstpris.

Anonymt Finalbord

Finalbordet blev en relativt anonym historia. Den mest kända spelaren var den australiensiska grindern Daniel Laidlaw.

PSC Macau
Dealen drog ut på tiden

Laidlaw blev dock väldigt shortstackad med tre spelare kvar, och när han stoppade in sina sista marker med Ess-Tio så åkte han ut efter att Smith dragit ut honom med Kung-Fem.

När Laidlaw försvann satte Smith och Tang omedelbart igång at diskutera en deal. Det tog dem över en timma att komma överens, och eventuellt kom man fram till att dela upp prispengarna och lämna HK$300,000 att spela om.

Dealen ingick ej i den beräknade speltiden, och under den 10,5 timma långa heads-up duellen fick vi se färgstegar, en ledning som skiftade flera gånger och ovanligt få all-ins.

Övriga spelare på finalbordet var Avraham Oziel, Aymon Hata, Pete Chen, Yan Li och Xuan Tan.

Bästa svensk blev Sofia Lövgren. Hon slutade på 44:e plats för $13,000.

Totalt deltog 546 spelare. Det skapade en prispott på dryga $2,6M.

Nästa stopp för Pokerstars Championship blir i Monte Carlo mellan 25:e april till 5:e maj.

Resultat Main Event Pokerstars Championship Macau

Elliot Smith (Kanada) - $370,508 Terry Tang (Kina) - $331,816 Daniel Laidlaw (Australien) - $221,896 Avraham Oziel (Kanada) - $164,749 Aymon Hata (Tyskland) - $122,275 Pete Chen (Taiwan) - $90,741 Yan Li (Kina) - $67,058 Xuan Tan (Kina) - $49,682

(Alla summor är omräknade från Hong Kong Dollar.)

Besök www.pokerlistings.se

          Порт Гданьск принял самый большой контейнеровоз в мире (фото)   
OOCL Hong Kong - первый в мире контейнеровоз, вместительность которого превысила отметку 21 тыс. TEU.
          Martin Jacobsons Montreal vinner Global Poker League   

Det blev tillslut Montreal Nationals som vann den första säsongen av Global Poker League.

Efter en nära sju timmar lång duell inne i kuben kunde man säkra titeln och $100,000 i prispengar.

Mike ”Timex” McDonald, Jason Lavallee, Pascal Lefrancois och lagledaren Marc-Andre Ladouceur visade sig bli en vinnande kombination i mästerskapets premiärupplaga för Montreal.

Vår svenska världsmästare Martin Jacobson hade tyvärr inte möjlighet att vara på plats. Han fick istället följa laget hemifrån.

Berlin föll på målsnöret                

Berlin Bears var vid ett tillfälle bara en hand ifrån att vinna titeln själva.

Brian Rast GPL
Slutspelets starkaste spelare?

Brian Rast, som varit den kanske mest dominanta spelaren i slutspelet av GPL hamnade all-in pre-flop med Q-4 mot Lefrancois 4-4. Brädan blankade dock, vilket innebar att chipledningen gled tillbaka till Montreal.

Den avgörande handen skulle sedan bli en riktig cooler. Lefrancois floppade ett set i damer, och turligt nog för honom turnade Rast ett tvåpar med 10-8.

Berlin var lite av en underdog i det här årets upplaga då dem hade en unik blandning av spelare som bland annat innefattade amatören Bill Perkins.

Deras lagledare Philipp Gruissem valde även att inte spela för laget, vilket irriterade både Hong Kong Stars och Moscow Wolverines.

De var också en underdog i finalen, där de ett tag låg under med 5-3, enbart för att hämta upp underläget till 5-5 och tvinga fram en elfte och avgörande match.

Trofén betyder mer än pengarna

Montreal Nationals GPL
Vinnare av säsong 1

Montreal fick en sistaminuten-boost i Jason Lavallee inför finalen, och det finns flera argument för att man hade det bästa laget i ligan.

Deras lag innehöll även Martin Jacobson och Xuan Liu som båda följde slutspelet hemifrån.

Laget delade på vinsten om $100,000, men för Mike McDonald som vunnit över $13m i liveturneringar betydde upplevelsen mer än pengarna.

”Jag är mycket mer exalterad över trofén än pengarna”, sa McDonald efter segern.

”Det här mästerskapet handlade mer om poker än om pengarna. Jag tror också att det var målet då man ville “sportifiera” pokern, och GPL uppnådde det.”

Förändringar väntar inför andra säsongen 2017

Global Poker League återvänder 2017 för säsong 2, men då lär vi få se en hel del förändringar.

Grundaren Alex Dreyfus säger att hans team arbetar på flera plan för att förbättra ligan.

För det första så kommer säsongen bli mycket kortare, vilket var ett av de största klagomålen under premiäråret.

Dreyfus vill också ge amatörspelare en chans att visa upp sina färdigheter inför GPL-publiken.

Det finns även en god möjlighet att ligan expanderar geografiskt sätt då Kina står redo att debutera.

En sak som inte kommer ändras? Draften. Dreyfus sa att det var en av de starkaste ingredienserna i GPL, och att han inte har några planer på att byta ut den.

Besök www.pokerlistings.se

          Media freedom in free fall 20 years after Hong Kong returned to China   
Publisher: Reporters Without Borders - Document type: Country News
          Mikael Thuritz 6:a i Triton Cups öppningsevent   

Förra veckan spelades Super Highroller-serien Triton Cup i Manila, Filippinerna, och det var många profiler som var på plats.

En av dem var den svenska stjärnan Mikael Thuritz, och i seriens öppningsevent tog han sig hela vägen till finalbordet. Väl där slutade han på en sjätteplats.

För att ta sig dit var han tvungen att besegra spelare som Tom Dwan, Fedor Holz och John Juanda.

Inköpet till turneringen låg på HK$200,000, vilket motsvarar drygt 230,000 kronor, och totalt registrerade sig 39 spelare.

Jungleman i topp för HK$2,8m

Det blev tillslut onlineprofilen Dan ”Jungleman” Cates som vann öppningseventet.

På finalbordet mötte han förutom Thuritz även den amerikanska stjärnan Erik Seidel och Paul Phua från Hong Kong.

Det var Cates som förde spelet, och när heads-up spelet började hade han ett stort chipövertag mot fransmannen Cyril Andre.

Han förvaltade det övertaget väl, och avslutade duellen på bara några minuter då han vann två stora potter mot Andre.

För sin insats belönades Cates med 2,8 miljoner Hongkong-dollar, vilket motsvarar drygt 3,2 miljoner kronor.

Nedan följer det kompletta utbetalningsschemat:

Daniel Cates (USA) – HK$2,785,900 Cyril Andre (Frankrike) - HK$1,807,000 Sergio Aido (Spanien) – HK$1,129,400 Erik Seidel (USA) – HK$790,600 Paul Phua (Hong Kong) – HK$564,700 Mikael Thuritz (Sverige) – HK$451,800

Kin Yong vinner Main Event för 16,1m Hongkong-dollar

Wai Kin Yong

Det blev tyvärr inga svenska framgångar i seriens Main Event. Istället blev det en amatör från Malaysia som vann.

Wai Kin Yong var tvungen att använda ett återinköp under Dag 1, och bland alla tungviktare i fältet lyckades han precis överleva dagen. Han klättrade sig sedan igenom fältet på ett imponerande sätt, och inför den avgörande Dag 3 var han i ledning.

I heads-up spelet besegrade han det amerikanska proffset Bryn Kenney, och insatsen gav över 16 miljoner Hongkong-dollar, i dagens växelkurs värt nästan 19 miljoner kronor.

Såhär slutade finalbordet: 

Wai Kin Yong (Malaysia) – HK$16,135,550 Bryn Kenney (USA) – HK$10,870,700 Sergio Aido (Spanien) – HK$6,580,900 John Juanda (Indonesien) – HK$4,533,500 Winfred Yu (Hong Kong) – HK$3,119,800 Peter Chan (Hong Kong) – HK$2,339,900 Wai Leong Chan (Malaysia) – HK$1,901,200 David Peters (USA) – HK$1,657,400 Arnaud Romain (Frankrike) – HK$1,608,700

Besök www.pokerlistings.se

          Tom Dwan och Dan Cates till HK$500k Triton Cup   

Några av världens bästa pokerspelare kommer återvända till Manila nästa månad för att spela Super High Roller-serien Triton Poker Cup.

Seriens höjdpunkt är dess Main Event för HK$500,000, men det kommer också spelas ett 6-max warm-up event.

Nu är det bekräftat att Tom ”durrrr” Dwan, Dan ”jungleman” Cates, Mustapha Kanit och John Juanda kommer delta, vilket Winfred Yu, president för Poker King Club kunde avslöja för den asiatiska pokersajten SoMuchPoker.

Triton Poker Series spelas mellan den 3:e till 4:e november på Poker King Club på Solaire Casino and Resort i Manila.

Affärsmän till Super High Rollern

Inga namn har bekräftats ännu, men man förväntar sig en stor skara affärsmän från Hong Kong och andra delar av Kina.

Dan Cates

Fler pokerproffs förväntas också anmäla sig de närmsta veckorna.

Förutom dyra turneringar hålls det skyhöga cashgames under serien. Enligt Yu gick det förra året regelbundna cashgames med ett minimuminköp på HK$10,000,000 (US$1,3m).

Tom Dwans och Dan Cates deltagande är extra intressant för de som följt de båda spelarna genom åren, då dem är inblandade i en utdragen ”durrr-challenge”.

Ingen av spelarna har officiellt sagt att utmaningen är färdigspelad ännu.

Än så länge har man inte kunnat bekräfta om förra årets Highroller-vinnare Fedor Holz återvänder för att försvara sin titel.

Förutom turneringarna i Manila har man planer på att utöka Triton-serien med ett välgörenhetsevent i Perth (Australien) den 8:e till 9:e december i år. 

Besök www.pokerlistings.se

          Teamen klara i Global Poker League 2016 – Här är namnen   

Under gårdagen valde Global Poker Index ut sina spelare till Global Poker Leagues andra upplaga. Eventet ägde rum i Los Angeles, USA – och pokerfansen kunde självklart vara med och följa spektaklet i realtid på livestreamingtjänsten Twitch.

Det hela kommenterades av pokerlegenderna Daniel Negreanu och Phil Hellmuth. Valet av pokerspelare skedde i fyra rundor, baserat på 200 slumpmässigt utvalda namn som matades in i en databas tidigare i februari.

En oförväntad händelse som Twitch-följarna fick vittna till var ett avslöjande från kommentatorerna, som av misstag råkade berätta att Antonio Esfandiari hade bett organisatören om att få sitt namn borttaget från urvalet.

Rome Emperors gruppledare, Max Pescatori, var först ut med att välja sina spelare. Först ut att bli invald i årets Global Poker League blev den italienska pokerstjärnan Mustapha Kanit.

Nedan följer en lista på samtliga team i Global Poker Leagues nästkommande upplaga, inklusive totala karriärvinster och GPI-rankning.

Rome Emperors (162): $16.291.715

GPI-rankning Karriärvinster
Max Pescatori (ITA)
Mustapha Kanit (ITA)
Dario Sammartino (ITA)
Timothy Adams (CAN)
Walter Treccarichi (ITA)

Montreal Nationals (456): $33.927.265

Marc-Andre Ladouceur (CAN)
Mike McDonald (CAN)
Martin Jacobson (SWE)
Pascal Lefrancois (CAN)
Xuan Liu (CAN)

New York Rounders (15): $45.227.670

Spelare GPI-rankning
Bryn Kenney (USA)
Jason Mercier (USA)
Thomas Marchese (USA)
Kevin MacPhee (USA)
Jason Wheeler (USA)

San Francisco Rush (359): $20.969.816

Faraz Jaka (USA)
Phil Galfond (USA)
Anthony Gregg (USA)
Kitty Kuo (TAI)
Anton Wigg (SWE)

Las Vegas Moneymakers (1022): $36.909.402

Chris Moneymaker (USA)
Anthony Zinno (USA)
Jonathan Duhamel (CAN)
Jake Cody (ENG)
Jonathan Little (USA)

Sao Paulo Metropolitans (551): $14.022.147

Spelare GPI-rankning
Andre Akkari (BRA)
Darren Elias (USA)
Byron Kaverman (USA)
Thiago Nishijima (BRA)
Joao Pires Simao (BRA)

London Royals (303): $38.742.913

Liv Boeree (UK)
Igor Kurganov (RUS)
Vanessa Selbst (USA)
Chris Moorman (ENG)
Justin Bonomo (USA)

Moscow Wolverines (242): $13.649.398

Spelare GPI-rankning
Anatoly Filatov (RUS)
Dzmitry Urbanovich (POL)
Vladimir Troyanovskiy (RUS)
Andrey Pateychuk (RUS)
Sergey Lebedev (RUS)

Los Angeles Sunset (305): $28.025.439

Spelare GPI-rankning
Maria Ho (USA)
Fedor Holz (GER)
Olivier Busquet (USA)
Eugene Katchalov (UKR)
Chance Kornuth (USA)

Berlin Bears (152): $44.808.217

Spelare GPI-rankning
Phillip Gruissem (GER)
Brian Rast (USA)
Sorel Mizzi (CAN)
Dominik Nitsche (GER)
Jeffrey Gross (USA)

Paris Aviators (132): $30.800.318

Spelare GPI-rankning
Fabrice Soulier (FRA)
Bertrand Grospellier (FRA)
Davidi Kitai (BEL)
George Danzer (GER)
Mike Leah (CAN)

Hong Kong Stars (556): $3.110.185

Celina Lin (CHN)
Weiyi Zhang (CHN)
Raiden Kan (HKG)
Dong Guo (CHN)
Diwei Bryan Huang (SIN)




Besök www.pokerlistings.se

          Should You Buy Organic Veggies? 6 Hong Kong Food Experts Say YES. But WHY?   
You’re at the supermarket doing your weekly shop and you reach the produce section and that’s when the dilemma begins: should you buy organic? There are a million different opinions on the subject out there, few of which are truly based in fact and most of which have some kind of political/corporate agenda behind them. No…

The post Should You Buy Organic Veggies? 6 Hong Kong Food Experts Say YES. But WHY? appeared first on Green Queen Health & Wellness Hong Kong.

          Summer Sun Guide: How To Choose A Natural Sunscreen   
Let’s come clean: sunscreen should be applied year-round. But as we are in the throes of summer and your skin is basking under constant sun, protecting it from sunburn and UV damage is more important than ever. Slathering on sunscreen is the smart thing to do but with the abundance of SPFs out there, so many products…

The post Summer Sun Guide: How To Choose A Natural Sunscreen appeared first on Green Queen Health & Wellness Hong Kong.

          HK Yoga Teacher Series: Aleksandra Milewicz, Founder Of Bamboo Yoga   
How did yoga enter your life? I discovered yoga after moving to Hong Kong six years ago and instantly fell in love with it. Yoga taught me how to live in the present mindfully and patiently, as well as how to find health and happiness within. It made me feel more empowered, aware and grateful.…

The post HK Yoga Teacher Series: Aleksandra Milewicz, Founder Of Bamboo Yoga appeared first on Green Queen Health & Wellness Hong Kong.

          Phản hồi cho Báo chí không ngoan, báo chí buộc phải chết. bởi chiên da diết kiến nghị   
Hồng Kông, Trung Quốc, Việt Nam là khu hành chính đặc biệt hồi nào vậy ? Theo Tạp Kỹ Cộng Sản "Đại sứ Hồng Tiểu Dũng đã điểm lại một số kết quả nổi bật trong quan hệ hợp tác giữa <b>Khu hành chính đặc biệt Hong Kong, Trung Quốc và Việt Nam</b> thời gian qua; đồng thời bày tỏ mong muốn <b>Khu hành chính đặc biệt Hong Kong, Trung Quốc và Việt Nam</b> tăng cường khai thác tiềm năng, đi sâu hợp tác, đem lại lợi ích thiết thực cho hai bên" Đại sứ Hồng Tiểu Dũng nhắc lại 2 lần có nghĩa không phải lỗi slip of the tongue. Curioser, curioser. "Đại sứ Trung Quốc Hồng Tiểu Dũng nhấn mạnh việc Hong Kong trở về với Trung Quốc theo phương châm “một quốc gia, hai chế độ” OK, Hong Kong với Trung Quốc là “một quốc gia, hai chế độ”. Và Việt Nam thuộc "Khu Hành chính đặc biệt" bao gồm cả Trung Quốc & Hong Kong . Có nghĩa Việt Nam, 1 phần của Khu hành chính đặc biệt, và Trung Quốc thuộc loại "2 quốc gia, 1 chế độ"? just in case người nào đang kỳ vọng vào Phạm Minh Chính, Đại sứ Hồng Tiểu Dũng tiếp PMC khi nói những điều này .
          20th anniversary of Hong Kong handover   
20 years ago today, Hong Kong was handed over to China, ending over 150 years of British rule. The territory was supposed to retain much of its independence from Beijing, but as Ben Tracy shows, promises of freedom have not been fulfilled.

          China flexes military muscle during Xi visit to Hong Kong   
Mr Xi rode in an open-top military vehicle past rows of soldiers lined up on an airstrip on his visit to the People’s Liberation Army garrison.
          Social perspective: Bluecoats in Hong Kong   
[View the story “Social perspective: Bluecoats in Hong Kong” on Storify]
          Why a Melbourne uni graduate will be protesting on Hong Kong's streets today   

Avery Ng was a management consultant but now he is fighting for democracy in Hong Kong.
          China is losing the battle for loyalty from the young in Hong Kong   

Young people are increasingly embracing a Hong Kong identity and rejecting the future Beijing wants to map out for them.
          Military leader Xi Jinping inspects PLA troops in Hong Kong   

The military parade, of 3000 army, navy and air force personnel, was televised live in Hong Kong and mainland China.
           Xi Jinping reassures divided Hong Kong of China’s support    
Hong Kong has always been in his heart, he says, but opponents, who want a greater democracy, say Xinping ‘loves to suppress’ the city
          Hong Kong was supposed to be a world financial capital in a communist system. Contradiction?   

From the beginning, the idea that capitalist Hong Kong could remain a thriving, prosperous city under Communist China may have been a tale doomed to an unhappy ending.

But as this city marks the 20th anniversary of its return to China’s control after 156 years of rule by Britain, it is beset by...

          Sign Structure   
Winnie Lo from The Vine Church in Hong Kong brings us this cool stage prop/sign. Event: Justice Conference Asia 2016 Materials: Acrylic Plastic, LED light tape, light tube, banner fabric, Coroplast sheets Budget: 5000 HKD Ordered: – 550 x 1700mm white box, opening at the back – 220mmH 550mmD “TOGETHER” letters, opening at the back, with a […]

          Chinese telecom firm ZTE to double 5G research spending   
HONG KONG - Chinese telecom equipment maker ZTE Corp will double its research spending on fifth-generation mobile network (5G) from this year, the company said, as China steps up the push to build the world's largest 5G network.

ZTE said it would invest 2 billion yuan ($295.5 million) in 5G research and development every year starting this year, up from 1 billion yuan invested last year. The budget could rise further as China aims to roll out 5G by 2020, the company said.

China and the United States are racing to lead the development of 5G technology, which will be significantly faster than the current 4G network. International standards for 5G are yet to be finalised.

China's cumulative 5G capital spending is expected to rise to 1.65 trillion yuan by 2025, a recent research paper from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology forecast, with equipment makers such as ZTE and Huawei Technologies set to be major beneficiaries.

China Mobile, the country's largest state-owned telecom operator, started field tests of China's first 5G base station in the southern city of Guangzhou last week.

ZTE said it currently employed 3,000 people engaged in research and development for 5G. A spokeswoman for the company declined to say if it planned to increase that headcount.

          Hong Kong was supposed to be a world financial capital in a communist system. Contradiction?   
From the beginning, the idea that capitalist Hong Kong could remain a thriving, prosperous city under Communist China may have been a tale doomed to an unhappy ending.

But as this city marks the 20th anniversary of its return to China’s control after 156 years of rule by Britain, it is beset by... Reported by L.A. Times 23 seconds ago.
          China exhibe su músculo militar en aniversario de Hong Kong    

El presidente chino Xi Jinping pasó revista el viernes a las tropas estacionadas en Hong Kong y reafirmó la autoridad del país.
          Hong Kong's Last British Governor Criticizes Beijing 20 Years After Handover   
On the anniversary of Hong Kong's return to China, Chris Patten has harsh words for Beijing's heavy-handed approach to the governance of the territory.
          Entrepreneurial Ideas Sparkle at PolyU’s Global Student Challenge   

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University organised the PolyU Innovation and Entrepreneurship Global Student Challenge 2017 in Hong Kong this week. After two rounds of vigorous competition of presentations held at the PolyU campus, the teams from Bangladesh and mainland China clutched top prizes in the university division and the secondary school division respectively.

(PRWeb June 30, 2017)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/07/prweb14476467.htm

          A quirky miasma of art and cheap thrills ...   
Movie reviews and images from the seedy underbelly of world cinema. May Definitely does contain offensive language, sex scenes, graphic violence, drug use, horror, gratuitous nudity, and/or traces of nuts.
The Virgin Psychics. Japan, 2016
The Virgin PsychicsThe Virgin Psychics from Sion Sono is a mish-mash of crazy ideas - a preposterous sci-fi/supernatural premise exploited to its fully perverted potential with an abundance of upskirts, dick jokes, and insane situations ... Read more
The Click. France, 1985
The ClickWhat if you had a remote control that could turn any woman into a shameless nympho at the turn of a dial? That is the central conceit of Le Declic, a film based on the erotic comic by highly regarded Italian illustrator Milo Manara ... Read more

Madame de Sade. Japan, 1986
Madame de SadeFor a film containing such highly sexual ideas and situations - the story, acting and cinematography is of a remarkably high order. For those who enjoy some titillation in their movies, but cannot put up with the cinematic dross so often exemplified by most adult entertainment, I can most certainly recommend ... Read more
Erotic Diary of an Office Lady. Japan, 1977
Erotic Diary of an Office LadyWhat's interesting about this film is that, as the name suggests, it is told from a woman's perspective. So while at first we thought these women were your typical sexual fantasies (and with a title like that, who can be blamed!) - Konuma masterfully exposes the viewer to the flipside of the coin ... Read more
Himiko. Japan, 1974
HimikoAs an introduction to the legend of Himiko, the film fulfills it's purpose, and with no small amount of style. The cast is terrific, and the visuals often amazing. It is however a product of its time - experimental, arty, and very different to modern Hollywood fare ... Read more
Zero Woman 5: The Hunted. Japan, 1997
Zero Woman 5This direct to video release is the 5th entry in the Zero Woman franchise, one of the better known and certainly most prolific in the abundant Japanese Girls with Guns genre. The basic storyline will be familiar to anyone who has seen the various incarnations of Nikita ... Read more
The Sorcerer and the White Snake. China/HK, 2011
The Sorcerer and the White SnakeI guess The Sorcerer and the White Snake is the Chinese equivalent of a blockbuster. Big name stars, melodramatic romance, talking animals. Usually not my bag at all. But this is one amazing-looking spectacle and as far as blockbuster entertainment goes you could do a lot worse ... Read more

The Evil Dead. USA, 1981
The Evil Dead Unfairly referred to on release as a 'video nasty', it's far better than that description might suggest, and is a highly accomplished genre film that pushed the creative envelope in many directions, despite its low-budget origins ... Read more

Cold Fish. Japan, 2011
Cold FishIt was with much anticipation that I caught Sion Sono's latest flick at a Film Festival this weekend. I was expecting something surreal and gory, and I knew it was based on a real-life serial killer. But what I didn't expect was the funniest movie I've seen this year... Read more

The Raquel Welch Project. One Million Years B.C, 1966
One Million Years B.C.While the search for a good Raquel Welch movie continues, I had a pretty good idea this was not likely to be one of them. Nevertheless, this is the movie that launched her as an international sex symbol, and the source of the infamous loinskin bikini ... Read more

The Hokusai Manga aka Edo Porn. Japan, 1981
Edo PornAn Academy Award-winning film that features Tentacle Porn? Not likely right? Well, it is when its the Japanese Academy Awards! This historical drama about famed artist Katsushika Hokusai is a quality historical drama with its fair share of titillation ... Read more

Braindead aka Dead-Alive. New Zealand, 1992
BraindeadBefore Peter Jackson won Oscar glory with Lord of the Rings, he was the Splatter King of B-Movies. This balls-out orgy of zombie mayhem may well be the single greatest achievement in B-grade zombie cinema, and incredibly funny for those with a twisted sense of humor ... Read more

Enter the Void. France, 2009
Enter The VoidA twisted, visceral, mind-blowing experience with huge ambitions that no doubt will prove far too edgy for the Oscars, even though its now firmly in front-running for my movie of the year. Hallucinogenic, sexy, transcendent, experimental, in-your-face, and brutal by turns - its not for everyone ... Read more

Angst. Austria, 1983
AngstFor fans of true crime, and anyone seeking a more authentic psycho killer experience this surely rates as one of the most successful of its type. It's nasty, it's seedy, it's disturbing - just like the crime itself. What was the film's biggest downfall is also its greatest asset - it's honesty ... Read more

XX: Beautiful Hunter. Japan, 1994
XX: Beautiful HunterFrom famed Japanese Pinku director Masaru Konuma comes this mid-90's Girls with Guns genre piece, fully stocked with guns, sex, blood and a touch of S&M-themed torture thrown in for good measure ... Read more

Vanilla Sky. USA, 2001
Vanilla SkyThe film that Vanilla Sky is based on, Alejandro Amenabar's Abre los Ojos (Open Your Eyes) is one of my all-time favourite films. And amazingly enough, so is this. Cameron Crowe took the opportunity to not only remake the movie, but to try and improve upon it as well. I still can't decide which of the two films I like better. Read more

School of the Holy Beast. Japan, 1974
School of the Holy BeastNunsploitation. What the fuck, right? It makes me laugh just to say it! But if you're looking for the Rolls-Royce of exploitation films, then this surely must be it. Despite the gorgeous visuals, the story doesn't shirk the exploitation factor, and has all the gratuitous and lurid content you could hope for. Read more

Candy, USA 1968
CandyAs a naive and trusting coed with a heart of gold, Candy is unaware of the effect she has on men, and seems like a bewildered Alice, in a Wonderland populated with sleazy, horny men. Light-hearted bawdy fun, and a worthwhile cinematic trip back to the 60's.
Read on

Boxer's Omen, Hong Kong 1983
Boxer's OmenI've seen more than my share of utterly bat-shit movies in my time, but this may be one of THE most twisted movies I've ever seen. Starting out as a martial arts movie, it segues into a triad theme, introduces a supernatural ghost-monk, and cuts to a gratuitous sex scene ... all within the first 15 minutes!
Read on

Black Dynamite, USA 2009
Black DynamiteA hilariously cheesy throwback to the golden era of 70s blaxploitation - complete with the requisite sexism, racism, macho posturing and kung fu! Some jive turkey has killed his brother and its up to Black Dynamite to find out who is responsible!
Read on

Thirst, Korea 2009
ThirstWhat can one of the most exciting directors in Asia bring to the well-established, and frequently all too predictable, vampire genre? Well rest assured there's loads of sex and blood, and the odd bit of ultra-violence thrown in for good measure ...
Read on

Angel-A, France 2005
Angel-AThe stunning cinematography around picturesque Paris, combined with the decision to film in black and white lends the film an artistic and classy aesthetic, however the delivery is anything but pretentious. Instead director Luc Besson has delivered a mature and sexy comedy/fantasy that is enjoyable from start to finish ...
Read on

          The Sorcerer and the White Snake   
China / Hong Kong, 2011
Director: Siu-Tung Ching
Stars: Jet Li, Eva Huang, Charlene Choi, Raymond Lam, Vivian Hsu
IMDB: 5.8

I guess The Sorcerer and the White Snake is the Chinese equivalent of a blockbuster. Big name stars, melodramatic romance, talking animals. Usually not my bag at all. Except I do enjoy interpretations of female snake demons that crop up in Chinese movies, and especially the sheer spectacle that Chinese cinema can produce these days.

Recent high-budget movies coming from this region have been technically and artistically astonishing - especially when combined with the rich cultural history they draw from. Director Siu-Tung Ching has seemingly marshalled a formidable army of CGI artists and set designers to realise a supernatural romantic blockbuster of epic proportions.

Obviously developed with mass-appeal in mind, there's something here for everyone, and should be enjoyable by anyone in the mood for a good popcorn flick. Jet Li plays a demon-hunting, kung-fu-fighting, flying sorcerer monk exhibiting god-like supernatural powers along with buddhist traits of patience, virtue and wisdom. Basically he's the man - as you'd expect in a Jet Li movie. He's so righteous he resists a harem of (bamboo) pole-dancing sirens as they lasciviously tempt him in one of the films saucier moments.

Meanwhile, two snake-demon sisters, known as the White Snake (Eva Huang, wow) and Green Snake (Charlene Choi) are frolicking about in the forest. White Snake spies a mortal that she fancies and soon enough a forbidden love develops between them. Misty-eyed yearning and professions of undying love ensue, accompanied by obligatory sweeping-epic mood music that signals melodramatic tension through frequencies designed to penetrate the subconscious emotion centers of your neo-cortex directly.

Thankfully melodrama is not the only aspect of this multi-faceted film. Fight sequences including aerial kung-fu, power-blasts and general mass destruction somewhat reminiscent of a playstation button masher occur regularly to break up the schmaltz. Demons take the shape of humans or animals, there's an army of mice, a talking tortoise, vampiric bat-demons and more. While obviously operating within a fantasy reality, nevertheless the supernatural back-story with ingrained buddhist philosophy seems self-consistent and was well thought through. At least to a gweilo like myself who is prepared to swallow any amount of eastern hokum pokum at face value.

The most impressive part of the movie for me was the visuals though. Although the CGI was over-used, and not always convincing, the many moments of sublimity redeem it. This is a spectacular looking film.

White Snake Eva Huang detracts from these visual aesthetics not a jot. Her starring role means she gets plenty of screentime and looks fabulously Revlon-esque throughout. Although several shots resemble high-gloss shampoo commercials, she and Charlene Choi fill the seductive snake duo roles with beauty and charm.

While the score is melodramatic at times, it has its moments of inspiration. Fight scenes are accompanied with room-shaking bass, and the sections of east/west fusion featuring operatic singing were effective and unique.

I imagine this would be a great movie to catch on the big screen, especially with a date or with family. Arthouse aficianados and fans of genre cinema should go in with expectations suitably adjusted. It is what it is - a popcorn blockbuster family entertainment. But as far as spectacle goes, you could do a whole lot worse.

NB: In the UK this has been re-titled The Emperor and the White Snake.

          The Hokusai Manga   
aka Edo Porn
Japan, 1981

Director: Kaneto Shindô
Starring: Ken Ogata, Toshiyuki Nishida, Yûko Tanaka, Kanako Higuchi
IMDB: 7.1

Katsushika Hokusai was an Ukiyo-e (woodblock) artist in Japan's Edo period, most well known for his 36 Views of Mt Fuji, especially the iconic Great Wave off Kanagawa (shown below). In Japan this film is known as The Hokusai Manga, as the film is basically a historical drama about the artist's life and work.

If you're wondering how a historical drama fits under the auspices of this blog, note also that Hokusai is widely believed to be the originator of Tentacle Porn. And indeed, in the West the film is known as Edo Porn - which I guess neatly enfolds its key aspects, if somewhat simplistically. While Hokusai was known for much more than his erotic art, its the Tentacles that earn it a place here.

As a young man, unable to make a living for himself through his painting, Hokusai (Ken Ogata) envies the success of contemporaries who are painting erotic pictures. One evening he comes across a beautiful young woman, Onao (Kanako Higuchi), and brings her back to his house to pose naked for him.

In an example of the film's minimal exposition, its never explained why she so willingly, and wordlessly accompanies him. Even less so, why she happily complies when he gives her to his father as a gift! Her oddly accommodating nature, sexual availability, and a habit of noisily chewing a local fruit makes for a beguiling and enigmatic character, more than befitting the woman who was the artist's muse.

Nevertheless, Onao mysteriously disappears, and both Hokusai and his father are distraught. Especially Hokusai who spends the rest of his life yearning for her. Over the coming years, he returns to painting landscapes and enjoys great success, even being asked to paint for the Shogun. But by his twilight years is living in relative poverty with his daughter Oei (Yuko Tanaka).

One day, being a thoughtful and devoted daughter, she brings a young woman back to the house, also named Onao, to be a new model for her father. She's a dead-ringer for her namesake, and it seems has the same free-wheeling sexuality. With a new muse to inspire him, Hokusai resumes painting with renewed enthusiasm.

This brings about my favorite part of the film, a live-action re-enactment of his famous work The Dream of the Fisherman's Wife, which features his model in a highly erotic ménage à trois with two Octopi ¹. The original is shown below, along with its cinematic representation. Now there's something you're not likely to see at your local multiplex!

In the film, Hokusai makes it clear that his work does not represent Octopi violating a woman, but rather the woman fondling Octopi. Ie: This was not a rape scene as might commonly be imagined, but depicts a woman's sexual fantasy, a theme that Hokusai enjoyed exploring.

Let's just say that if there were an Academy Award for Best Live-Action Tentacle Porn Sequence, then this film would surely own it. Although I can't profess to have seen much in this sub-genre, it certainly has way higher artistic validity than the tentacle-themed La Blue Girl series. But if any readers out there want to suggest another contender, please leave a comment.

For those interested in Japanese art and culture, this biopic gives an interesting account of the artist's life, and the times that he lived in. Although slow and ponderous when judged by modern sensibilities, the film is thematically rich, covering themes such as aging, lost love, and the artistic impulse. It is also beautifully filmed.

It was nominated in multiple categories at the Japanese Academy Awards, winning one. Perhaps the only instance of an Academy-Award winning film featuring Tentacle Porn!

Rating: 7/10

Unfortunately this is not an easy film to get hold of, however an R3 DVD has been released by Panorama in Hong Kong, and can be found at most online Asian DVD specialists.

¹ ref: the correct plural of Octopus

A few more screenshots

The first two are Yuko Tanaka, who won a Japanese Academy Award (Best supporting actress) for this film. The 3rd pic is Kanako Higuchi (who didn't - despite her valiant Octopi entanglement.)


Japanese Movie Poster:

Preferring to accentuate the titillation over the art, this 1981 film poster is certainly a product of its time. Featured is Academy-Award-winning actress Kanako Higuchi who went on to feature in such films as Zatoichi, Casshern, Kagero and many others. Click here to see a larger version.

          Conférence du GERAC : Taïwan et Hong Kong, 2014, à l'ombre de Tiananmen   
          Diplomate en résidence aux HEI, Patrice Dallaire analyse la crise à Hong Kong   
Notre collègue a été représentant du gouvernement québécois en Chine, puis vice-président et directeur général de la filiale chinoise de la Caisse de dépôt et de placement du Québec à Beijing. Il est donc bien placé pour saisir les ressorts du conflit actuel.
          Révolution des parapluies à Hong Kong : un membre des HEI explique   
Gérard Hervouet, directeur du Groupe d'études et de recherches sur l'Asie contemporaine (GÉRAC), explique la situation au micro de Radio-Canada.
          One Belt, One Road... Implications for Mission   

Not long ago I was in Hong Kong and the talk of the town was China’s One Belt, One Road plan to catalyze business ventures across Asia and into Europe.

For those of you never hearing of the idea, check out this interview by McKinsey & Company: China’s One Belt, One Road: Will it reshape global trade?

It’s certainly a breathtaking economic initiative and many wonder if it’ll come to fruition because of the massive infrastructure costs it will take to pull everything together. One thing we can say, China is ambitious!

For me, the talk was all about how important this enterprise will become for the Gospel’s advance. Christian business leader after Christian business leader were extolling the potential, saying we must capitalize on this moment because the potential is too big to miss! And, the timing is interesting in that the country’s Church has laid an ambitious plan to repay the debt they owe God be sending 20,000 missionaries from their country across these belts and roads by 2030: see Vision 2030 and Asian believers cast vision for massive outreach.

The idea is not without its critiques either: Check out Asian Access Council of Reference Member and ChinaSource CEO Dr. Brent Fulton’s reflections—One Belt, One Road, One Mission?

Certainly, the extraordinary plan will be something to watch in the upcoming decade. And, regardless of its success, the implications are enormous and worth thinking about. For Asian Access, we will continue coming alongside leaders in this country to fulfill our founders dream, “My Vision is to Empower your Vision!” and one new way we are approaching these throughout various sectors of society is our new business venture. Check it out: A2.business

We used to see our role as exclusively coming alongside emerging young pastors, leaders of leaders who have potential to influence their cities, regions and countries. Now, we realize that in order to fully fulfill our vision, we also must come alongside emerging young leaders in the business sector as well. Together, we aspire to see the Church overcome the “Sacred/Secular Divide” and catalyze a movement “to see a vibrant community of servant leaders… leading the Church across Asia… to unite the Church, multiply leaders and congregations and extend the transforming power of the Gospel.”


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Joe Handley

Joe Handleyemail jhandley@asianaccess.org
twitter @jwhandley



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          [合集]【邵氏BD蓝光原盘63部2715.32GB】国粤多语.简繁英多字幕.邵氏蓝光出品 洗版高质量收藏【百度网盘】[已提供下载]   

邵氏电影风靡全球,邵氏影迷疯迷世界,邵氏电影是香港电影界的奇迹,留下众多不朽经典传世之作,培养出大批优秀电影人才,对后来电影业发展有着深远影响,直到现在喜欢邵氏电影的影迷还在逐年增长,狮碟影视论坛独家整理邵氏BD蓝光合集原盘目前只收集到63部,喜欢蓝光影迷可以洗洗版高质量收藏,也会持续更新下去, 未来可能会有更多 ....














1  中华丈夫 Heroes of the East (1979) AVC 1080p BD25 - Custom Subs/Dub
2  天下第一拳 King Boxer (1972) AVC 1080p BD50 - Shaw Bros, Custom Eng dub/subs
3  少林搭棚大师 Return to the 36th Chamber (1980) AVC 1080p BD50 - Eng subs added
4  少林三十六房 The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (1978)AVC 1080p BD50 - Custom Eng subs
5  少林五祖 Five Shaolin Masters (1974) AVC 1080p BD50 - Shaw Bros
6  新独臂刀 The New One-Armed Swordsman (1971) AVC 1080p BD50
7  独臂刀王 Return of the One-Armed Swordsman (1969) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros, Custom
8  独臂刀 The One-Armed Swordsman (1967) 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros - Custom
9  双侠 The Deadly Duo (1971) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros
10  八道楼子 Seven Man Army (1976) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros - Custom subs
11  十三太保 The Heroic Ones (1970) AVC 1080i BD25 - Shaw Bros
12  十四女英豪 The 14 Amazons (1972) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros - Custom subs & dub
13  荡寇志 All Men Are Brothers (1975) AVC 1080i BD25 - Shaw Bros
14  金瓶双艳 The Golden Lotus (1974)AVC 1080p
15  金燕子 Golden Swallow (1968) AVC 1080p BD25 Shaw Brothers
16  教头 The Kung-fu Instructor (1979) AVC 1080p BD50 - Shaw Bros
17  多情剑客无情剑 The Sentimental Swordsman (1977) AVC 1080p BD50 - Shaw Bros, Custom Subs
18  霹雳十杰Disciples of the 36th Chamber (1985) AVC 1080p BD50 - Eng subs added
19  少林寺 Shaolin Temple (1976) AVC 1080i BD50 - Shaw Bros, Ger subs only
20  洪拳小子 Disciples of Shaolin (1975) AVC 1080p BD50 - Shaw Bros, Custom dub
21  洪拳大师 Opium and the Kung-Fu Master (1984) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros
22  茅山僵尸拳 The Shadow Boxing (1979) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros, Custom Eng subs
23  猩猩王 The Mighty Peking Man / Goliathon (1977) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros, Custom Eng dub & subs
24  南少林与北少林 nvincible Shaolin (1978) AVC 1080i50 BD50 - Shaw Bros, Ger subs only
25  南北少林 Martial Arts of Shaolin (1986) AVC 1080p BD50 - Jpn/Chn subs only
26  方世玉与胡惠乾 The Shaolin Avengers (1976) AVC 1080p BD25
27  马永贞 The Boxer from Shantung (1972) AVC 1080i50 BD50 - Shaw Bros, Ger subs only
28  中国超人 The Super Inframan (1975) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros Custom Eng Subs
29  五虎将 The Savage Five (1974) AVC 1080p BD50
30  五毒天罗 The Web of Death (1976) AVC 1080i BD25 - Shaw Bros
31  五虎屠龙 Brothers Five (1970) AVC 1080i BD25 - Shaw Bros
32  五郎八卦棍 Eight-Diagram Pole Fighter (1984) AVC 1080p BD50 - Shaw Bros, Custom Eng dub/subs
33  五遁忍术 Five Element Ninjas (1982) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros
34  五毒 Five Deadly Venoms (1978) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros
35  梁山伯与祝英台 The Love Eterne (1963) AVC 1080p BD25
36  缘份 Behind the Yellow Line (1984) AVC 1080p BD25 - Leslie Cheung, Maggie Cheung, Anita Mui, Anthony Chan
37  快活林 The Delightful Forest (1972) AVC 1080i BD25 - Shaw Bros
38  方世玉与洪熙官 Heroes Two (1974) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros
39  残缺 Crippled Avengers (1978 ) AVC 1080p BD25 - Custom dub
40  水浒传 The Water Margin (1972) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros, Custom subs
41  血滴子 The Flying Guillotine (1975) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros, Custom
42  刺马The Blood Brothers (1973) AVC 1080i50 BD50 - Shaw Bros, Custom subs
43  大决斗 The Duel (1971) AVC 1080p BD50 - Shaw Bros, Custom subs
44  大醉侠 Come Drink With Me (1966) AVC 1080p BD25 - Custom Multiple Audio & Subs
45  疯猴 Mad Monkey Kung Fu (1979) AVC 1080i50 BD50 - Shaw Bros, No subs



46. 流星蝴蝶剑 The killer clans(1976) AVC 1080i BD25 -Killer Clans, Shaw Bros
47.审死官 .Justice.My.foot.1992.Blu-ray.1080p.AVC.LPCM.2.0.Mandarin&Cantonese-chs&eng



49.龙虎斗[日版邵氏 DIY简繁中字]The Chinese Boxer 1970 JPN Blu-ray 1080p AVC LPCM]




50    叉手 Masked Avengers (1981) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros  

51    爱奴 Intimate Confessions of a Chinese Courtesan (1972) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros 

52    报仇 Vengeance (1970) AVC 1080i BD25 - Shaw Bros 

53    杀绝 Soul of the Sword (1978) AVC 1080i BD25 - Shaw Bros 

54    种鬼 Seeding of a Ghost (1983) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros 

55    三少爷的剑 Death Duel (1977) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros 

56    冲霄楼 House of Traps (1982) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros 

57    邪 Hex (1980) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros 

58    男与女 Hong Kong, Hong Kong (1983) AVC 1080p BD25 

59    降头 Black Magic (1975) AVC 1080p BD25 - Chn/Ger subs only 

60    三笑 The Three Smiles (1969) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros opera 

61    江山美人 The Kingdom and the Beauty (1959) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros 

62    济公 The Mad Monk (1993) AVC 1080p BD25 

63    万人斩 Killer Constable (1980) AVC 1080p BD25 - Shaw Bros 








          Hong Kong was supposed to be a world financial capital in a communist system. Contradiction?   

From the beginning, the idea that capitalist Hong Kong could remain a thriving, prosperous city under Communist China may have been a tale doomed to an unhappy ending.

But as this city marks the 20th anniversary of its return to China’s control after 156 years of rule by Britain, it is beset by...

          Racist slight against the Rohingyas draws no criticism from ASEAN   
Myanmar's Outrageous Racism Excused
Asia Sentinel, 12 Feb 09

A racist slight against the Rohingyas draws no criticism from ASEAN

The reputation and so-called solidarity the Association of Southeast Asian Nations hit a new low this week with the Myanmar envoy to Hong Kong indulging an extraordinary racist outburst against brown people from his own country. Undiplomatic though his words were, they are the sort of remarks that come easily to the lips of some other Southeast and East Asians for whom brown skins have always been a sign of low class if not actual racial inferiority.

Consul General Ye Mint Aung wrote to his fellow diplomats in Hong Kong explaining that the Rohingyas were not actually Myanmese and were not accepted as one of the ethnic groups of his country, or indeed as citizens. He wrote: "You will see in the photos that their complexion is 'dark brown'" in contrast to the complexion of Myanmese which was "fair and soft, good looking as well."

He went on to claim that his own complexion was typical of a Myanmar gentleman and fellow diplomats could contrast their "handsome colleague" with the "ugly as ogres" Rohingyas whose pictures were in the newspapers.

The Myanmese belief in racial purity and the superiority appearance of pale skin, as well as not being Buddhist, seem the basis of refusal to admit the Rohingyas as citizens even though they have lived in the Rakhine (formerly Arakan) division of Myanmar for hundreds of years. Doubtless it would have been better for them if the British imperialist had drawn the map between Bengal and Burma differently but that border hill country is an ethnic patchwork. In reality the Rohingyas speak a version of Bengali and have a physical appearance akin to Bengalis.

It seems that the Mynmar representative can issue crude, written racist remarks not only about his fellow Asean members but which are deeply offensive to their populous neighbors to the west – Bangladesh and India.

Judging by the way that Thailand has been treating these stateless refugees, calling them economic migrants and pushing them off in engineless boats, with possibly hundreds dying at sea, Thai officials seem to agree with their Myanmar colleague that such dark-skinned "ogres" should not be allowed even to stop temporarily in Thailand in their search for security. Thai Prime Minister, the suitably "fair and soft" complexioned fourth generation Thai Chinese, Abhisit Vejjajiva, has been vocal in defending the army's murderous actions and calling the Rohingyas "economic migrants" despite their denial of citizenship in an Asean country.

The cringing attitudes shown by Asean towards Myanmar and the racist attitudes of some Asean countries is stunning. While pushing off the Rohingyas, who anyway wanted to go to Muslim countries, Thailand has turned a blind eye to the hundreds of thousands, perhaps a million, "fair complexioned" Myanmese who work as cheap and expendable labor on Thai building sites and fishing boats. As for Asean, which supposedly now has a Human Rights agenda, it does nothing.

Malaysia once had a sympathetic attitude to the Rohingyas. Some 10,000 to 20,000 now live there having originally been offered succor as oppressed Muslims. But Malaysia has shifted towards appeasement of Myanmar and a suspicion of foreign workers generally, Muslim or not, despite the role that undocumented foreigners play in the economy.

Asean is supposed to discuss the Rohingyas refugee issue at its end February summit in Thailand. But do not expect anything other than platitudes, let alone any action to help these stateless people or condemn Myanmar.

Click on image to see enlarged version

          China's Charter 08   
China's Charter 08
New York Review of Books
Volume 56, Number 1 · January 15, 2009

Translated from the Chinese by Perry Link

The document below, signed by more than two thousand Chinese citizens, was conceived and written in conscious admiration of the founding of Charter 77 in Czechoslovakia, where, in January 1977, more than two hundred Czech and Slovak intellectuals formed a
loose, informal, and open association of people...united by the will to strive individually and collectively for respect for human and civil rights in our country and throughout the world.
The Chinese document calls not for ameliorative reform of the current political system but for an end to some of its essential features, including one-party rule, and their replacement with a system based on human rights and democracy.

The prominent citizens who have signed the document are from both outside and inside the government, and include not only well-known dissidents and intellectuals, but also middle-level officials and rural leaders. They chose December 10, the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as the day on which to express their political ideas and to outline their vision of a constitutional, democratic China. They want Charter 08 to serve as a blueprint for fundamental political change in China in the years to come. The signers of the document will form an informal group, open-ended in size but united by a determination to promote democratization and protection of human rights in China and beyond.

Following the text is a postscript describing some of the regime's recent reactions to it.

—Perry Link

A hundred years have passed since the writing of China's first constitution. 2008 also marks the sixtieth anniversary of the promulgation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the thirtieth anniversary of the appearance of the Democracy Wall in Beijing, and the tenth of China's signing of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. We are approaching the twentieth anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen massacre of pro-democracy student protesters. The Chinese people, who have endured human rights disasters and uncountable struggles across these same years, now include many who see clearly that freedom, equality, and human rights are universal values of humankind and that democracy and constitutional government are the fundamental framework for protecting these values.

By departing from these values, the Chinese government's approach to "modernization" has proven disastrous. It has stripped people of their rights, destroyed their dignity, and corrupted normal human intercourse. So we ask: Where is China headed in the twenty-first century? Will it continue with "modernization" under authoritarian rule, or will it embrace universal human values, join the mainstream of civilized nations, and build a democratic system? There can be no avoiding these questions.

The shock of the Western impact upon China in the nineteenth century laid bare a decadent authoritarian system and marked the beginning of what is often called "the greatest changes in thousands of years" for China. A "self-strengthening movement" followed, but this aimed simply at appropriating the technology to build gunboats and other Western material objects. China's humiliating naval defeat at the hands of Japan in 1895 only confirmed the obsolescence of China's system of government. The first attempts at modern political change came with the ill-fated summer of reforms in 1898, but these were cruelly crushed by ultraconservatives at China's imperial court. With the revolution of 1911, which inaugurated Asia's first republic, the authoritarian imperial system that had lasted for centuries was finally supposed to have been laid to rest. But social conflict inside our country and external pressures were to prevent it; China fell into a patchwork of warlord fiefdoms and the new republic became a fleeting dream.

The failure of both "self- strengthening" and political renovation caused many of our forebears to reflect deeply on whether a "cultural illness" was afflicting our country. This mood gave rise, during the May Fourth Movement of the late 1910s, to the championing of "science and democracy." Yet that effort, too, foundered as warlord chaos persisted and the Japanese invasion [beginning in Manchuria in 1931] brought national crisis.

Victory over Japan in 1945 offered one more chance for China to move toward modern government, but the Communist defeat of the Nationalists in the civil war thrust the nation into the abyss of totalitarianism. The "new China" that emerged in 1949 proclaimed that "the people are sovereign" but in fact set up a system in which "the Party is all-powerful." The Communist Party of China seized control of all organs of the state and all political, economic, and social resources, and, using these, has produced a long trail of human rights disasters, including, among many others, the Anti-Rightist Campaign (1957), the Great Leap Forward (1958–1960), the Cultural Revolution (1966–1969), the June Fourth [Tiananmen Square] Massacre (1989), and the current repression of all unauthorized religions and the suppression of the weiquan rights movement [a movement that aims to defend citizens' rights promulgated in the Chinese Constitution and to fight for human rights recognized by international conventions that the Chinese government has signed]. During all this, the Chinese people have paid a gargantuan price. Tens of millions have lost their lives, and several generations have seen their freedom, their happiness, and their human dignity cruelly trampled.

During the last two decades of the twentieth century the government policy of "Reform and Opening" gave the Chinese people relief from the pervasive poverty and totalitarianism of the Mao Zedong era, and brought substantial increases in the wealth and living standards of many Chinese as well as a partial restoration of economic freedom and economic rights. Civil society began to grow, and popular calls for more rights and more political freedom have grown apace. As the ruling elite itself moved toward private ownership and the market economy, it began to shift from an outright rejection of "rights" to a partial acknowledgment of them.

In 1998 the Chinese government signed two important international human rights conventions; in 2004 it amended its constitution to include the phrase "respect and protect human rights"; and this year, 2008, it has promised to promote a "national human rights action plan." Unfortunately most of this political progress has extended no further than the paper on which it is written. The political reality, which is plain for anyone to see, is that China has many laws but no rule of law; it has a constitution but no constitutional government. The ruling elite continues to cling to its authoritarian power and fights off any move toward political change.

The stultifying results are endemic official corruption, an undermining of the rule of law, weak human rights, decay in public ethics, crony capitalism, growing inequality between the wealthy and the poor, pillage of the natural environment as well as of the human and historical environments, and the exacerbation of a long list of social conflicts, especially, in recent times, a sharpening animosity between officials and ordinary people.

As these conflicts and crises grow ever more intense, and as the ruling elite continues with impunity to crush and to strip away the rights of citizens to freedom, to property, and to the pursuit of happiness, we see the powerless in our society—the vulnerable groups, the people who have been suppressed and monitored, who have suffered cruelty and even torture, and who have had no adequate avenues for their protests, no courts to hear their pleas—becoming more militant and raising the possibility of a violent conflict of disastrous proportions. The decline of the current system has reached the point where change is no longer optional.


This is a historic moment for China, and our future hangs in the balance. In reviewing the political modernization process of the past hundred years or more, we reiterate and endorse basic universal values as follows:

Freedom. Freedom is at the core of universal human values. Freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, freedom of association, freedom in where to live, and the freedoms to strike, to demonstrate, and to protest, among others, are the forms that freedom takes. Without freedom, China will always remain far from civilized ideals.

Human rights. Human rights are not bestowed by a state. Every person is born with inherent rights to dignity and freedom. The government exists for the protection of the human rights of its citizens. The exercise of state power must be authorized by the people. The succession of political disasters in China's recent history is a direct consequence of the ruling regime's disregard for human rights.

Equality. The integrity, dignity, and freedom of every person—regardless of social station, occupation, sex, economic condition, ethnicity, skin color, religion, or political belief—are the same as those of any other. Principles of equality before the law and equality of social, economic, cultural, civil, and political rights must be upheld.

Republicanism. Republicanism, which holds that power should be balanced among different branches of government and competing interests should be served, resembles the traditional Chinese political ideal of "fairness in all under heaven." It allows different interest groups and social assemblies, and people with a variety of cultures and beliefs, to exercise democratic self-government and to deliberate in order to reach peaceful resolution of public questions on a basis of equal access to government and free and fair competition.

Democracy. The most fundamental principles of democracy are that the people are sovereign and the people select their government. Democracy has these characteristics: (1) Political power begins with the people and the legitimacy of a regime derives from the people. (2) Political power is exercised through choices that the people make. (3) The holders of major official posts in government at all levels are determined through periodic competitive elections. (4) While honoring the will of the majority, the fundamental dignity, freedom, and human rights of minorities are protected. In short, democracy is a modern means for achieving government truly "of the people, by the people, and for the people."

Constitutional rule. Constitutional rule is rule through a legal system and legal regulations to implement principles that are spelled out in a constitution. It means protecting the freedom and the rights of citizens, limiting and defining the scope of legitimate government power, and providing the administrative apparatus necessary to serve these ends.


Authoritarianism is in general decline throughout the world; in China, too, the era of emperors and overlords is on the way out. The time is arriving everywhere for citizens to be masters of states. For China the path that leads out of our current predicament is to divest ourselves of the authoritarian notion of reliance on an "enlightened overlord" or an "honest official" and to turn instead toward a system of liberties, democracy, and the rule of law, and toward fostering the consciousness of modern citizens who see rights as fundamental and participation as a duty. Accordingly, and in a spirit of this duty as responsible and constructive citizens, we offer the following recommendations on national governance, citizens' rights, and social development:

1. A New Constitution. We should recast our present constitution, rescinding its provisions that contradict the principle that sovereignty resides with the people and turning it into a document that genuinely guarantees human rights, authorizes the exercise of public power, and serves as the legal underpinning of China's democratization. The constitution must be the highest law in the land, beyond violation by any individual, group, or political party.

2. Separation of Powers. We should construct a modern government in which the separation of legislative, judicial, and executive power is guaranteed. We need an Administrative Law that defines the scope of government responsibility and prevents abuse of administrative power. Government should be responsible to taxpayers. Division of power between provincial governments and the central government should adhere to the principle that central powers are only those specifically granted by the constitution and all other powers belong to the local governments.

3. Legislative Democracy. Members of legislative bodies at all levels should be chosen by direct election, and legislative democracy should observe just and impartial principles.

4. An Independent Judiciary. The rule of law must be above the interests of any particular political party and judges must be independent. We need to establish a constitutional supreme court and institute procedures for constitutional review. As soon as possible, we should abolish all of the Committees on Political and Legal Affairs that now allow Communist Party officials at every level to decide politically sensitive cases in advance and out of court. We should strictly forbid the use of public offices for private purposes.

5. Public Control of Public Servants. The military should be made answerable to the national government, not to a political party, and should be made more professional. Military personnel should swear allegiance to the constitution and remain nonpartisan. Political party organizations must be prohibited in the military. All public officials including police should serve as nonpartisans, and the current practice of favoring one political party in the hiring of public servants must end.

6. Guarantee of Human Rights. There must be strict guarantees of human rights and respect for human dignity. There should be a Human Rights Committee, responsible to the highest legislative body, that will prevent the government from abusing public power in violation of human rights. A democratic and constitutional China especially must guarantee the personal freedom of citizens. No one should suffer illegal arrest, detention, arraignment, interrogation, or punishment. The system of "Reeducation through Labor" must be abolished.

7. Election of Public Officials. There should be a comprehensive system of democratic elections based on "one person, one vote." The direct election of administrative heads at the levels of county, city, province, and nation should be systematically implemented. The rights to hold periodic free elections and to participate in them as a citizen are inalienable.

8. Rural–Urban Equality. The two-tier household registry system must be abolished. This system favors urban residents and harms rural residents. We should establish instead a system that gives every citizen the same constitutional rights and the same freedom to choose where to live.

9. Freedom to Form Groups. The right of citizens to form groups must be guaranteed. The current system for registering nongovernment groups, which requires a group to be "approved," should be replaced by a system in which a group simply registers itself. The formation of political parties should be governed by the constitution and the laws, which means that we must abolish the special privilege of one party to monopolize power and must guarantee principles of free and fair competition among political parties.

10. Freedom to Assemble. The constitution provides that peaceful assembly, demonstration, protest, and freedom of expression are fundamental rights of a citizen. The ruling party and the government must not be permitted to subject these to illegal interference or unconstitutional obstruction.

11. Freedom of Expression. We should make freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and academic freedom universal, thereby guaranteeing that citizens can be informed and can exercise their right of political supervision. These freedoms should be upheld by a Press Law that abolishes political restrictions on the press. The provision in the current Criminal Law that refers to "the crime of incitement to subvert state power" must be abolished. We should end the practice of viewing words as crimes.

12. Freedom of Religion. We must guarantee freedom of religion and belief, and institute a separation of religion and state. There must be no governmental interference in peaceful religious activities. We should abolish any laws, regulations, or local rules that limit or suppress the religious freedom of citizens. We should abolish the current system that requires religious groups (and their places of worship) to get official approval in advance and substitute for it a system in which registry is optional and, for those who choose to register, automatic.

13. Civic Education. In our schools we should abolish political curriculums and examinations that are designed to indoctrinate students in state ideology and to instill support for the rule of one party. We should replace them with civic education that advances universal values and citizens' rights, fosters civic consciousness, and promotes civic virtues that serve society.

14. Protection of Private Property. We should establish and protect the right to private property and promote an economic system of free and fair markets. We should do away with government monopolies in commerce and industry and guarantee the freedom to start new enterprises. We should establish a Committee on State-Owned Property, reporting to the national legislature, that will monitor the transfer of state-owned enterprises to private ownership in a fair, competitive, and orderly manner. We should institute a land reform that promotes private ownership of land, guarantees the right to buy and sell land, and allows the true value of private property to be adequately reflected in the market.

15. Financial and Tax Reform. We should establish a democratically regulated and accountable system of public finance that ensures the protection of taxpayer rights and that operates through legal procedures. We need a system by which public revenues that belong to a certain level of government—central, provincial, county or local—are controlled at that level. We need major tax reform that will abolish any unfair taxes, simplify the tax system, and spread the tax burden fairly. Government officials should not be able to raise taxes, or institute new ones, without public deliberation and the approval of a democratic assembly. We should reform the ownership system in order to encourage competition among a wider variety of market participants.

16. Social Security. We should establish a fair and adequate social security system that covers all citizens and ensures basic access to education, health care, retirement security, and employment.

17. Protection of the Environment. We need to protect the natural environment and to promote development in a way that is sustainable and responsible to our descendants and to the rest of humanity. This means insisting that the state and its officials at all levels not only do what they must do to achieve these goals, but also accept the supervision and participation of nongovernmental organizations.

18. A Federated Republic. A democratic China should seek to act as a responsible major power contributing toward peace and development in the Asian Pacific region by approaching others in a spirit of equality and fairness. In Hong Kong and Macao, we should support the freedoms that already exist. With respect to Taiwan, we should declare our commitment to the principles of freedom and democracy and then, negotiating as equals and ready to compromise, seek a formula for peaceful unification. We should approach disputes in the national-minority areas of China with an open mind, seeking ways to find a workable framework within which all ethnic and religious groups can flourish. We should aim ultimately at a federation of democratic communities of China.

19. Truth in Reconciliation. We should restore the reputations of all people, including their family members, who suffered political stigma in the political campaigns of the past or who have been labeled as criminals because of their thought, speech, or faith. The state should pay reparations to these people. All political prisoners and prisoners of conscience must be released. There should be a Truth Investigation Commission charged with finding the facts about past injustices and atrocities, determining responsibility for them, upholding justice, and, on these bases, seeking social reconciliation.

China, as a major nation of the world, as one of five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, and as a member of the UN Council on Human Rights, should be contributing to peace for humankind and progress toward human rights. Unfortunately, we stand today as the only country among the major nations that remains mired in authoritarian politics. Our political system continues to produce human rights disasters and social crises, thereby not only constricting China's own development but also limiting the progress of all of human civilization. This must change, truly it must. The democratization of Chinese politics can be put off no longer.

Accordingly, we dare to put civic spirit into practice by announcing Charter 08. We hope that our fellow citizens who feel a similar sense of crisis, responsibility, and mission, whether they are inside the government or not, and regardless of their social status, will set aside small differences to embrace the broad goals of this citizens' movement. Together we can work for major changes in Chinese society and for the rapid establishment of a free, democratic, and constitutional country. We can bring to reality the goals and ideals that our people have incessantly been seeking for more than a hundred years, and can bring a brilliant new chapter to Chinese civilization.

The planning and drafting of Charter 08 began in the late spring of 2008, but Chinese authorities were apparently unaware of it or unconcerned by it until several days before it was announced on December 10. On December 6, Wen Kejian, a writer who signed the charter, was detained in the city of Hangzhou in eastern China and questioned for about an hour. Police told Wen that Charter 08 was "different" from earlier dissident statements, and "a fairly grave matter." They said there would be a coordinated investigation in all cities and provinces to "root out the organizers," and they advised Wen to remove his name from the charter. Wen declined, telling the authorities that he saw the charter as a fundamental turning point in history.

Meanwhile, on December 8, in Shenzhen in the far south of China, police called on Zhao Dagong, a writer and signer of the charter, for a "chat." They told Zhao that the central authorities were concerned about the charter and asked if he was the organizer in the Shenzhen area.

Later on December 8, at 11 PM in Beijing, about twenty police entered the home of Zhang Zuhua, one of the charter's main drafters. A few of the police took Zhang with them to the local police station while the rest stayed and, as Zhang's wife watched, searched the home and confiscated books, notebooks, Zhang's passport, all four of the family's computers, and all of their cash and credit cards. (Later Zhang learned that his family's bank accounts, including those of both his and his wife's parents, had been emptied.) Meanwhile, at the police station, Zhang was detained for twelve hours, where he was questioned in detail about Charter 08 and the group Chinese Human Rights Defenders in which he is active.

It was also late on December 8 that another of the charter's signers, the literary critic and prominent dissident Liu Xiaobo, was taken away by police. His telephone in Beijing went unanswered, as did e-mail and Skype messages sent to him. As of the present writing, he's believed to be in police custody, although the details of his detention are not known.

On the morning of December 9, Beijing lawyer Pu Zhiqiang was called in for a police "chat," and in the evening the physicist and philosopher Jiang Qisheng was called in as well. Both had signed the charter and were friends of the drafters. On December 10—the day the charter was formally announced—the Hangzhou police returned to the home of Wen Kejian, the writer they had questioned four days earlier. This time they were more threatening. They told Wen he would face severe punishment if he wrote about the charter or about Liu Xiaobo's detention. "Do you want three years in prison?" they asked. "Or four?"

On December 11 the journalist Gao Yu and the writer Liu Di, both well-known in Beijing, were interrogated about their signing of the Charter. The rights lawyer, Teng Biao, was approached by the police but declined, on principle, to meet with them. On December 12 and 13 there were reports of interrogations in many provinces—Shaanxi, Hunan, Zhejiang, Fujian, Guangdong, and others—of people who had seen the charter on the Internet, found that they agreed with it, and signed. With these people the police focused on two questions: "How did you get involved?" and "What do you know about the drafters and organizers?"

The Chinese authorities seem unaware of the irony of their actions. Their efforts to quash Charter 08 only serve to underscore China's failure to uphold the very principles that the charter advances. The charter calls for "free expression" but the regime says, by its actions, that it has once again denied such expression. The charter calls for freedom to form groups, but the nationwide police actions that have accompanied the charter's release have specifically aimed at blocking the formation of a group. The charter says "we should end the practice of viewing words as crimes," and the regime says (literally, to Wen Kejian) "we can send you to prison for these words." The charter calls for the rule of law and the regime sends police in the middle of the night to act outside the law; the charter says "police should serve as nonpartisans," and here the police are plainly partisan.

Charter 08 is signed only by citizens of the People's Republic of China who are living inside China. But Chinese living outside China are signing a letter of strong support for the charter. The eminent historian Yu Ying-shih, the astrophysicist Fang Lizhi, writers Ha Jin and Zheng Yi, and more than 160 others have so far signed.

On December 12, the Dalai Lama issued his own letter in support of the charter, writing that "a harmonious society can only come into being when there is trust among the people, freedom from fear, freedom of expression, rule of law, justice, and equality." He called on the Chinese government to release prisoners "who have been detained for exercising their freedom of expression."

—Perry Link, December 18, 2008
          Un diplômé partage son expérience au ministère de l'Immigration et des Communautés culturelles   
Diplômé de la maîtrise des HEI en 2006, Michel Tremblay a récemment accédé au poste de conseiller en immigration et relations internationales à la Division des gens d’affaires, Service Europe-Asie-Afrique, du ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés culturelles (MICC), à Montréal.Sa mission consiste à sélectionner des immigrants, hommes ou femmes d’affaires et investisseurs pour le Programme Immigrant Investisseur du MICC. Il se charge de mener des entrevues de sélection de dossiers d’investisseurs iraniens, des Émirats Arabes Unis et de Chine. Michel partagera son temps entre Montréal et Hong Kong où il vit en alternance : chaque année est constituée de 8 périodes de 6 semaines qu’il passera tour à tour à Montréal et à Hong Kong.Michel Tremblay vit son rôle avec passion: «Je me réjouis de pouvoir contribuer à réaliser les projets de familles entières ayant un profond désir de venir s’établir au Québec et de participer au dynamisme économique de la province».
          UNESCO’s #Unite4Heritage Campaign is a permanent exhibit at UN Headquarters   

From 28 June, the almost two million visitors that will have come through the UN Headquarters in the next two years will have the chance to experience and interact with UNESCO’s #Unite4Heritage campaign and gain exposure to the Organization’s major areas of work. On this day, UNESCO’s Director-General Irina Bokova and partners Salon Films of Hong Kong and MillenniumArt of San Francisco inaugurated an interactive information booth at the Visitors’ Centre of the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

In the short ceremony to unveil the installation, the Director-General emphasized the importance of communicating UNESCO’s strong message. “This is about building peace in young minds, in protecting our cultural heritage, in advancing education, creativity and scientific innovation.” She described the #Unite4Heritage campaign as “a response to extremists, to empower young people with skills and understanding of why identities and heritage matter. At the end of the day, this is about values, about human rights and dignity.”

Mr Maher Nasser, Acting UN Under Secretary-General for Public Information underscored that the UN receives 1 million visitors every year, of which about 250,000 take the UN tours – roughly 900 to 1,000 people a day. From now on, each UN tour guide will direct visitors to the UNESCO Information booth at the end of their tour. Mr Nasser emphasized the importance of exposing people to the way UNESCO works on the so-called “soft areas” of the UN work, drawing a parallel with the “hard” ones of peace and security dealt with by the UN Security Council.  “Culture and education is what gives us our identities,” he stated, this is the way to “‘build peace in the minds of men and women.’”

Dr Helen Chan, representing Salon Films, a long-time UNESCO partner that sponsored the installation of the booth, highlighted how partnerships with the private sector can enable successful collaborations such as this one. After presenting how the information kiosks work, Ms Mia Hanak, Executive Director of MillenniumArt, who conceptualized and executed the booth, guided participants in using it.

The booth is composed of two kiosks: a video kiosk screens videos and infographics about UNESCO’s major areas of activities and programs, and a photo kiosk that promotes UNESCO’s #Unite4Heritage campaign. The photo kiosk allows users to take photographs superimposed onto World Heritage Sites as backgrounds, which are sent to the user’s email for further sharing on social media.

The event was attended by a number of UN Ambassadors, NGO and civil society representatives, as well as media, UN staff and visitors. All had the chance to discover and use this interactive addition to the UN Headquarters’ experience.

          Malaysia International Summer Bible Conference   

“But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)

I flew 20 hours in order to attend the first Asia International Summer Conference June 29-July 1 2017 at Kuala Lumpur Malaysia hosted by Malaysia UBF. I met Dr. John and Deborah Lee from Lincoln Park UBF at Tokyo Narita Airport. Shep. Vincent Lee who met Christ while studying in Univ. of Chicago was greeted us with a big smile and we hugged each other. He drove us to the conference place-the council of churches of Malaysia (CCM).The room was clean and nice. There was no TV or any other media entertainment. After a long journey, I slept around 2 AM like a rock. In the morning, I met Shep. Ison Hong, the director of Malaysia UBF who met Christ through Bob Henkins IIT ministry while studying in USA and later grew in faith with the support of Springfield UBF ministry.

Ison Hong and Vincent Lee returned to their home country of Malaysia and began to serve the gospel ministry for University of Malaysia. I found good mission model in USA mission work-raise up disciples of all foreign students and send them back to their native country to pioneer the campuses of their home country. They will not have language or cultural barriers to serve the gospel work in their home country.

There are five faithful coworkers in Malaysia UBF-Ison Hong, Vincent Lee, Huong Eng, Lee Hung, and Kok Meng. Ison Hong will establish a house church with Nicky Teng from Kaohsiung Taiwan (Dr. Steve and Allison Haga’s ministry) after the conference. God will bless first house church in Malaysia as a sign of blessing.

This conference is a historical event in two points.

First, the native leaders organized this conference with their pioneering spirit and working together. There was no international conference because there is no common language in Asia. But they overcome language barriers and agreed together and prepared the conference using English as the common language. Everything is possible when we believe. It was their act of faith. Philippines, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Brunei, and USA joined this conference. Seventy-five people registered and they have full of spirit and joy.

Second, the words of Isaiah were powerful. The conference theme was “Grace and Peace” from Isaiah chapters 40-55. In spite of the rebellion and disobedience, unfaithfulness of Israel, God did not forget his people and comforted them while they were in exile. God did not forget them though they complained their hopeless situations. They will soar like an eagle when they put hope in God. Dr. Steve Haga delivered the opening message based on Isaiah 40:27-31 with the title “Wait” and Ison Hong delivered the first lecture based on Isaiah 40”1-11 with the title “Comfort.” The messages were powerful enough comforting all attendants with the word of encouragements and hope of God. The second lecture will be delivered by Vincent Lee with the title “Believe”. The third lecture by Bob Henkins with the title “Sing” and the fourth lecture by Jimmon Rubilos with the title “Come.” There will be life testimonies. They arranged pre-conference tours of Kuala Lumpur like city galleries, twin towers, and old palaces.

Kuala Lumpur used to be a muddy tin mine town. Now it was transformed into the most beautiful garden city of the world.  Modern Malaysia is a multicultural and multiracial society of approximately 22 million people were ethnic Malays, Chinese and Indians live together in relative harmony. While Islam is the official religion of Malaysia, freedom of worship is guaranteed and widely practiced. Ethnic Malays are, for the most part, Muslim; Chinese mainly Buddhist or Christian; and Indians follow Hinduism as their main religion. The national language is Bahasa Malaysia (similar to Indonesian); however, as a result of the British colonial period, English is widely spoken and is a compulsory subject in schools. Other main languages found in Malaysia include various Chinese dialects (Cantonese, Hokkien, or Hakka), and Tamil or Hindi amongst the Indian population.

Please pray for the conference to reveal the glory of God and grace and peace in the gospel of Jesus.

Pray for the wedding ceremony between Ison Hong and Nicky (Becky) Teng after the conference.

May God bless you richly!

Jacob Lee from Kuala Lumpur

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          Hong Kong home prices scale new peak, 20 years after 1997 record   
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          Hong Kong home prices rise at slowest pace in four months as government policies show teeth   
Hong Kong’s residential property prices rose at the slowest monthly pace in four months in May, as the prospect of higher interest rates and an April government stamp duty to cool the market fin ... - Source: www.scmp.com
          Homes you can buy for a million US dollars in Hong Kong, London and Singapore   
HONG KONG This year, Hong Kong home prices soared to a new record high, with buyers apparently undeterred by successive interest rate rises and the fact that, according to the latest annual Demographi ... - Source: www.scmp.com
          Demand tapers off in Hong Kong’s serviced sector as accommodation budgets get smaller   
There have been good times, and better times, for serviced apartment operators in Hong Kong. According to research by Savills, these aren’t exactly the best of times, with 80 to 85 per cent occu ... - Source: www.scmp.com
          Ffrench Pharmaceuticals   
For its second year running, Ffrench Pharmaceuticals travels to Hong Kong Art Basel 2017 to see make-up doyenne Isamaya Ffrench, QIC Global Real Estate and East London restaurant Bisthrotheque unite to deliver an immersive dinner. Mirroring Ffrench’s experimental creative vision, the medically themed event presented guests with an unorthodox six course dining experience.
          Will Hong Kong home prices fall 30pc in next 12 months?   
Hong Kong home prices, already the world’s highest, have shown signs of easing with more experts predicting that the market could reach a turning point in the third quarter of the year. Industry ... - Source: www.scmp.com
          Sights & Sound 2013 live performances   

Sheila Barrios was one of the Ilonggo pop artists featured in the Acoustic Concert of Sights & Sound 2013 at Robinsons Place Iloilo on May 16, 2013. Sheila performed her hit Ilonggo song "Ginpalangga." Other artists who performed are UK-based songstress Jehnniel Palma, acoustic artist Daniel Zedane, new pop singers Jen Sanchez, Muke Gonzaga with guest artists Marty n' Lindy and rapper Zpinx Angel. The winners of the Digital Tourism Photo Contest was announced and the teaser trailer of the new Ilonggo movie "Pangyaw" by Ilonggo filmmaker Ronny Poblacion recently shot in Hong Kong was unveiled for the very first time. Hampang Productions and CPU Adverts exhibited their multi-media projects such as short films, video ads, photography and more. The event was a success and will have a sequel this year.
Sights & Sound 2013 was co-organized 8finity Events, RSLPhoenix Music, Hampang Productions, Department of Tourism Regional Office, Iloilo Dinagyang Foundation, Inc., Robinsons Place Iloilo and RNP Media Productions, co-presented by Sarabia Manor Hotel & Convention Center, The Peter Solis Nery Foundation, Inc., Mr. Cheaster Cabasac of DX Productions, Cilantro Flavors of Vietnam and Beauty Dynamics Facial Care Center. Minor sponsors are Shana Lacs Spa, Hong Kong Kitchen, M. Moleta Signs & Services, Fiesta BBQ & Seafood, Ong Bun Pension House and Everpure water. Special thanks to media partner News Express.
          Sights & Sound 2013: Merging Music, Art, Tourism and Pop Culture    

Photos by Hampang Productions

Sights & Sound 2013 merges Ilonggo pop culture, music, multimedia arts and tourism in one inspiring event at Robinsons Place Iloilo on May 16, 2013 from 10am to 6pm. Conceptualized by 8finity Events, RSLPhoenix Music and Hampang Productions in cooperation with The Department of Tourism Region VI, Iloilo Dinagyang Foundation, Inc., RNP Media Productions and CPU Council of Advertising Practitioners, the event highlights the best of Ilonggo talents and pop culture. Hampang Productions, a promising film, animation and photography organization together with the CPU Council of Advertising Practitioners mounted an interactive multimedia art exhibit featuring their best projects from short films, commercial ads, fashion and tourism photography from 10am to 6pm at the mall’s fountain area. At 2:30pm, the top 3 winners of the Digital Tourism Photo Contest were declared. The third place was bagged by Christian Bermejo who featured the Jaro Belfry in his photo, second place goes to Randolf Ponsaran who captured a stunning photo of Dinagyang warriors, and finally, Alberto Andone’s photo showing the stunning beauty of Cabugao Gamay, Gigantes Island located in Carles, Iloilo, was declared first place. They received framed photo of their entries, certificate and cash prizes of P3,000, P2,000 and P1,000, respectively.
The most-awaited acoustic pop concert of today’s promising local artists started at 3pm. Highlight of the show was 2013 British Got Talent semi-finalist and London-based alternative pop songstress Jehnniel Palma who promoted her upcoming indie album soon-to-be-sold online in itunes. Iloilo’s acoustic heartthrob Daniel Zedane, Ilonggo pop diva Sheila Barrios, newcomer pop singers Jen Sanchez and Muke Gonzaga with guest artists Marty n’ Lindy and rapper Zpinx Angel entertained the crowd with their English cover songs and original hit singles. Finally, the anticipated first teaser trailer of the new Ilonggo movie, ”Pangyaw” (Friend – in Chinese) partly shot in Hong Kong which was produced, directed and written by Ilonggo filmmaker Ronny Poblacion with screenplay by Ronelo Ladiao was unveiled. The movie’s lead actor Chuck Luat together with Poblacion provided details about the movie in a mini presscon with the local media. The event is expected to have it 2014 sequel, bigger and better.
Sights & Sound 2013 was hosted by Muke Gonzaga. The event was co-presented by Sarabia Manor Hotel & Convention Center, The Peter Solis Nery Foundation, Inc., Mr. Cheaster Cabasac of DX Productions, Cilantro Flavors of Vietnam and Beauty Dynamics Facial Care Center. Minor sponsors are Shana Lacs Spa, Hong Kong Kitchen, M. Moleta Signs & Services, Fiesta BBQ & Seafood, Ong Bun Pension House and Everpure water. Special thanks to media partner News Express.

           Sights & Sound 2013 Official PR   

Merging tourism photography, multimedia arts, local music and Ilonggo movie launch, Sights & Sound 2013, a co-production of 8finity Events, RSLPhoenix Music, Robinsons Place Iloilo with Hampang Productions, Department of Tourism Region VI, Iloilo Dinagyang Foundation, Inc. and the CPU Council of Advertising Practitioners, is a whole-day special event worth visiting on May 16 from 10am to 6pm at Robinsons Place Iloilo Fountain Area.
If you want to see some innovative and artistic multimedia arts from photography, graphic designs, video adverts and short films, Hampang Productions and the CPU Council of Advertising Practitioners will exhibit their magnificent works starting 10am until 6pm. For photography enthusiasts, feel free to submit your photo entry to the Digital Tourism Photo Contest of any scenery or tourism site in Western Visayas by sending it with your name and contact details at 8finitymagazin@gmail.com and hampangproductions@gmail.com before May 14.
Get ready to be entertainment for a full acoustic pop concert at 2pm with original music and cover song performances by RSLPhoenix Music exclusive artists headed by UK-based alternative indie songstress Jehnniel Palma with upcoming an international record album, acoustic heartthrob Daniel Zedane, local pop diva Sheila Barrios, newcomer pop artists Jen Sanchez and Muke Gonzaga, plus guest rap artist Zpinx Angel.
At 5pm, Ilonggo veteran photographer and filmmaker Ronny Poblacion fresh from his phenomenal success of his Sineng Pambansa 2013 film entry “Beadworks,” will launch and unveil the teaser trailer of his new international Ilonggo movie “Pangyaw” (Friend, in Chinese) partly shot in Hong Kong. His lead actors Chuck Luat and Janna Eve Marin will join the Ilonggo filmmaker for a mini press conference.
The event is co-presented by Sarabia Manor Hotel and Convention Center, The Peter Solis Nery Foundation for Hiligaynon Literature and The Arts, Cilantro, GMA Iloilo, Shana Lacs Spa, Everpure by Dayn Gabryll Water Enterprise (CP# 09212800481), Hong Kong Kitchen, Beauty Dynamics, Ong Bun Pension House, Fiesta BBQ and Seafood, and A. Moleta Printer.  

          These 15 photos show Hong Kong's journey from British rule to today   

Hong Kong's return to Chinese sovereignty

Hong Kong will celebrate the 20 year anniversary of its reunification with China following British rule this weekend.

The city has a seperate political and economic system under the "one country, two systems" constitutional principle, which has at times lead to pro-democracy protests during clashes with Beijing.

These historic images show 20 years of Hong Kong's fraught – and incredibly politicized — relationship with Mainland China.

The handover of Hong Kong from British rule to Beijing began officially with the signing of the Sino-British Joint Declaration in 1984 by Premier Zhao Ziyang of the People's Republic of China and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher of the United Kingdom.

Source: The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region

In 1989, the Tiananmen Square protest crackdown sent shockwaves throughout the country. The annual candlelight vigil held in Hong Kong to mark its date is symbolic of the rift that remains between the island city and Beijing.

Source: The Washington Post

As the late 1990s brought increased instability, thousands of Hong Kong natives left their homeland for countries such as the UK, Canada and the US.

Source: Time

See the rest of the story at INSIDER
          Are Hong Kong Conglomerates Replacing SWF Money for London Towers?   
Hong Kong’s Lee Kum Kee Group, which generated much of its wealth from manufacturing oyster sauce, is nearing a deal to acquire the famous Walkie Talkie building, at 20 Fenchurch Street, in London. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]
          Hong Kong was supposed to be a world financial capital in a communist system. Contradiction?   

From the beginning, the idea that capitalist Hong Kong could remain a thriving, prosperous city under Communist China may have been a tale doomed to an unhappy ending.

But as this city marks the 20th anniversary of its return to China’s control after 156 years of rule by Britain, it is beset by...

          #640: The Beguiled / Top 5 Sofia Coppola Scenes   
Almost 15 years after its release, "Lost in Translation" remains Sofia Coppola’s best-known and best-loved film. But with the four films she's made since then, she's compiled one of the most distinctive filmographies of the 21st century. THE BEGUILED is a very Coppola remake of the 1971 Don Siegel/Clint Eastwood collaboration set during the Civil War at a Virginia girls' school. It stars Nicole Kidman, Elle Fanning, Colin Farrell and Coppola regular Kirsten Dunst, and it won Coppola the Best Directing Prize at Cannes back in May. This week, Coppola skeptic Angelica Jade Bastien (Vulture) joins Josh for a review of the film along with their Top 5 Sofia Coppola Scenes.

0:00-1:25 - Billboard
1:25-28:25 - Review: "The Beguiled"
Siouxsie & The Banshees, "Hong Kong Garden"
29:30-38:46 - Notes / Massacre Theatre
38:46-1:07:41 - Top 5: Sofia Coppola Scenes
1:07:41-1:11:13- Close / Outtake

          Hồng Kông, một nền tư pháp dưới áp lực Bắc Kinh   

Lãnh tụ sinh viên Hồng Kông Hoàng Chi Phong bị cảnh sát bắt ngày 28/06/2017.REUTERS/Tyrone Siu
Hôm 28/06/2017, lãnh tụ sinh viên Hồng Kông Hoàng Chi Phong (Joshua Wong) cùng với 25 nhà đấu tranh đã bị câu lưu trong một cuộc biểu tình phản đối Tập Cận Bình đến thăm đặc khu, nhân kỷ niệm 20 năm cựu thuộc địa Anh được trao trả cho Trung Quốc. Những người biểu tình cũng đòi hỏi trả tự do cho giải Nobel hòa bình Lưu Hiểu Ba và tất cả các tù nhân chính trị. Họ được thả ra vào rạng sáng thứ Sáu 30/6, và cho biết sẽ kiện lên Tòa án Tối cao về vụ bắt bớ này.
Kể từ đầu tháng Năm đến nay, trên những bậc thềm tòa sơ thẩm Khu Đông Hồng Kông (Eastern Magistrates’Court), ngự trị một không khí « phiên tòa chính trị » đã trở thành quen thuộc, vốn diễn ra ngày càng nhiều trong những năm cuối của nhiệm kỳ ông Lương Chấn Anh (C.Y.Leung). Ra trước tòa là những khuôn mặt thường rất trẻ ở tuổi sinh viên, với bạn bè và những người ủng hộ vây quanh, đôi khi thêm vài băng-rôn và vô số camera truyền hình, máy ảnh. Hôm đặc phái viên Le Monde đến dự, có 9 người bị triệu tập với sáu tội danh khác nhau (tụ tập trái phép, gây rối trật tự công cộng, chống lại nhân viên công lực…). Tất cả có điểm chung là đã tham gia cuộc biểu tình ngày 06/11/2016 trước Văn phòng liên lạc Trung Quốc. Nằm ở khu Tây Hoàn (Sai Wan), phía tây khu tài chính Trung Hoàn nổi tiếng, cơ quan này đặt tại một tòa tháp bằng kính và thép hiện đại, phía trên nóc là một quả cầu. Tuy mang cái tên khá khiêm tốn, nhưng Văn phòng liên lạc là một tổ chức hành chính khổng lồ, với mấy chục ban bệ khác nhau, đóng vai trò quan trọng trong việc chọn lựa các ứng cử viên đề cử vào Quốc Hội Hồng Kông. Trước khi bước vào phòng xử, cô Chu Đình (Agnès Chow), bí thư đảng đối lập Hương Cảng Chúng Chí (Demosisto) cho biết : « Chúng tôi lo ngại chính quyền lợi dụng phiên tòa này để bỏ tù những người phản kháng trước khi chủ tịch Trung Quốc Tập Cận Bình đến vào ngày 1/7 ».Nhưng thẩm phán hôm đó chấp nhận ngay yêu cầu hoãn xử của luật sư, thậm chí còn cho thời hạn lâu hơn vì lịch xử không thuận tiện. Phiên tòa như vậy được dời đến ngày 21/7, nhờ đó các bị cáo có thể đi biểu tình chống Tập Cận Bình. Dưới mắt Lâm Thuần Hiên (Derek Lam), thành viên Demosisto và là sinh viên trường đại học Trung Quốc ở Hồng Kông, các vụ bắt bớ này nhằm sách nhiễu. Anh nói : « Chúng tôi liên tục bị bắt, với tôi đây đã là lần thứ tư. Thật là rắc rối, nhất là bây giờ đang vào mùa thi ». Hồi cuối tháng Ba, sau hôm bà Lâm Trịnh Nguyệt Nga (Carrie Lam) được bầu làm trưởng đặc khu, một nhóm 9 công dân Hồng Kông khác, trong đó có ba lãnh tụ phong trào Chiếm lĩnh Trung Hoàn, cũng đã bị triệu ra tòa. Tháng Tư, dân biểu, chủ tịch đảng Nhiệt Huyết Công Dân (Civic Passion) là Trịnh Tùng Thái (Cheng Chung Tai), 33 tuổi, bị bắt rồi được tại ngoại sau khi đóng tiền bảo lãnh, vì « xúc phạm quốc kỳ ». Anh đã cắm ngược những lá cờ đuôi nheo Trung Quốc và Hồng Kông bằng vải ni-lông trên bục các đồng nghiệp thân Bắc Kinh vào tháng 10/2016. Ngày 3/7, khoảng hai chục nhà đấu tranh trong đó có Hoàng Chi Phong bị triệu tập vì « chống lại nhân viên công lực ». Nhưng trường hợp điển hình nhất là hai dân biểu trẻ của đảng Thanh Niên Tân Chính (Youngspiration), Lương Tụng Hằng (Baggio Leung) và Du Huệ Trinh (Yau Waiching), đắc cử tháng 9/2016 nhưng chưa bao giờ được ngồi vào chỗ của mình vì bị loại ra khỏi Quốc Hội. Trong khi tư pháp đặc khu chưa đưa ra kết luận về lời tuyên thệ của họ, thì tháng 11/2016 Bắc Kinh đã can thiệp, cho rằng vô giá trị. Đơn kháng cáo của hai dân biểu trẻ sẽ được tòa phúc thẩm xem xét cuối tháng Tám năm nay, họ được một trong những luật sư nổi tiếng nhất Luân Đôn là David Pannick biện hộ. Hai dân biểu này giải thích : « Ở tòa án cấp cao nhất, chúng tôi vẫn còn tin vào một bản án công bằng ». Số phận của sáu dân biểu đối lập khác cũng đang nằm trong tay tư pháp. Họ bị cáo buộc tụ tập bất hợp pháp, vì một cuộc họp tổ chức ngay trong tòa nhà Quốc Hội. Gần đây, nhiều phiên xử cho thấy quyết định của tòa không phải lúc nào cũng thuận lợi cho chính quyền. Hồi tháng Hai, cựu trưởng đặc khu Tăng Âm Quyền (Donald Tsang) bị 20 tháng tù vì sai phạm trong quản lý. Ông Tăng kháng cáo và được cho đóng tiền tại ngoại. Còn tỉ phú Quách Bình Giang (Thomas Kwok) có liên quan đến một vụ án tham nhũng dính líu đến nhân vật số hai của ông Tăng Âm Quyền là Hứa Sĩ Nhân (Raphael Hui), thì vừa thua kiện ở tòa phúc thẩm. Năm 2014, ông Hứa Sĩ Nhân đã bị kết án bảy năm rưỡi tù giam. Về phần bảy cảnh sát đã đánh đập một người biểu tình trong đợt « Cách mạng Dù vàng » năm 2014, mỗi người bị lãnh án hai năm tù. Bản án nghiêm khắc này đã gây ra phong trào tương trợ với cảnh sát. Dù vậy, mặc cho tính khách quan của các thẩm phán và sự vững chải của các định chế Hồng Kông, một luật sư giấu tên cho biết tại đặc khu « các thành viên luật sư đoàn hết sức bảo thủ. Đa số có cùng ý nghĩ là không nên làm cho con tàu tròng trành, cần phải tương đối thôi ». Luật sư này cho rằng khá mỉa mai khi tòa phúc thẩm lại nằm gần hai ngân hàng chính của Hồng Kông là HSBC và Bank of China, tại tòa nhà của tỉ phú Lý Gia Thành (Li Kashing) và câu lạc bộ sang trọng Hương Cảng Hội (Hong Kong Club). RFI

          New Year's Greetings and Silverlight Greeting Card   

Originally posted on: http://geekswithblogs.net/lbugnion/archive/2008/12/31/new-years-greetings-and-silverlight-greeting-card.aspx

Happy New Year to all. 2008 has been an amazing year, with many changes in my professional life (joining IdentityMine, publishing my first book Silverlight 2 Unleashed, etc...). It was a real pleasure to be in company of some of the brightest minds on this planet and to do my best to not seem to ridiculous next to them :) Privately, the highlight of this year has been our trip to Asia (Malaysia, Hong Kong) which will remain in our minds forever.

Read the rest of this entry »

          Artist In Focus: Thomas C. Chung   
Time you met a clever new friend of mine… 1.              Tell me a little about yourself. Where are you from and how did you start creating your art. Hi Mac – thank you for having me here. I’m originally from Hong Kong, but grew up here in Sydney, Australia. I started Art, like all kids, … Continue reading
          Tight security as Hong Kong celebrates 20 years since British handover   
Demonstrators gathered in one area chanting: “End one-party dictatorship.”
          Top 10 home tips from around the world   
Top 10 home tips from around the world

We often forget how modern air travel has transformed our lives. We think nothing of jetting off to far flung destinations for a week or two, locations our forefathers would only have dreamed of visiting.

It gives us an opportunity to absorb the culture and customs of these countries, including the food, fashion, art, architecture and the interior style of a destination. Often we are inspired to incorporate some of these elements into our homes. It could be locally produced homewares, handmade furnishings, artisanal furniture or a print by a roadside artist - keepsakes of an exotic getaway or maybe more?

With this in mind here are home style ideas and inspiration from the top 10 holiday locations Aussies can’t get enough of.

1. India for ornate accessories

With such a diverse array of cultures and religions across this vast country no surprise that Indian interior design is among the most exotic and complex styles out there. Colour is central to every aspect of Indian culture, and is a feature that strikes all first time visitors . India is also justly renowned for its beautiful handicrafts, fabrics, ornate architecture and homewares.

Style tip: Indian handicrafts and decorative artifacts are a cost effective option to add colour and visual interest to any room in your home. Use a few select vibrant pieces to accessorise and offset a more muted overall tone for a room, as in this take on a traditional bedroom.

India for ornate accessories

2. Hawaii for island style

Hawaii islands are a natural paradise with an abundance of rainforest, stunning beaches and volcanoes - which is why it became the ultimate tropical destination. The style and design of Hawaiian homes reflect this with a lifestyle that is intimately connected with these elements. Surf and beach culture are also synonymous with Hawaii, and both have influenced fashion and interior design far beyond these Pacific islands.

Style tip: To bring a little of the aloha island style and spirit into your home incorporate lush tropical plants, bamboo - or even better install an outdoor shower to transport you to a Hawaiian beach hut.


Hawaii for island style

3. Japan for organic minimalism

The land of the rising sun has had a huge influence on interior design in the West, with a simplicity that is at once modest yet effortlessly elegant. Their interior design aesthetic has been refined over thousands years and has been heavily influenced by Buddhist/Shinto culture and the natural world. I am going to call it organic minimalism. Timber and other natural materials are an important element of traditional Japanese homes, evident in the use of tatami mats and timber framed shoji screens.
Style tip: Add a timber freestanding timber bathtub to turn your bathroom into a serene traditional Japanese onsen or spa experience and soak your troubles away in Zen-like solitude. Or head to your nearest Muji outlet for a budget take on many elements of Japanese interior design.

Japan minimalism

4. Hong Kong for space conscious storage

Living spaces is at a premium in the compressed environs of this ex-British colonial outpost. That means most Hong Kong residents live in compact apartments where space is precious.  They need to be clever with the limited space they have to work with, so ideas around smart storage abound. Think using every square inch of your apartment, such as under bed storage, storage friendly furniture, behind the door storage and clever storage solutions for their tiny, postage stamp sized kitchens.

Style tip: If you have a compact kitchen look to utilise corners to maximise the area to its fullest. Clever corner cabinet drawers turn once redundant space into useful storage for items like cutlery or even pots.

Hong Kong for space conscious storage

5. New York for loft living

Converting old warehouses, factories and industrial spaces in New York became popular at the height of the counterculture movement in the 1960s, when artists turned these spaces into studios and a place to crash. They are defined by high ceilings and large windows, so usually have oodles of natural light. Another design marker are exposed beams and structural elements including pipework, lighting and ducting.

Style tip: Look to expose any brickwork in your home and contrast it with more modern design elements including Scandi furniture, outsize artworks and greenery in the form of leafy plants in large pots.

New York loft living

6. British for eclectic eccentricity

You would be hard pressed to find a Brit who leaves for work with a bowler hat, but that is not to say that tradition is on the wane there. For interiors the modern British home is an eclectic mix of influences, that borrows as much from their former colonies as it does reference a rich classical history. All these result in a style that is uniquely British, with nods to eclectic eccentricity, the countryside and a tradition of solid craftsmanship.

Style tip: Juxtapose solid, crafted classically inspired furniture with items from your travels, like a kilim from India, mask from Africa or intricate carving from Asia.

British for eclectic eccentricity

7. Thai for handcrafted furniture

Thailand is only surpassed by Bali as a favoured holiday getaway for Aussies, and it is not difficult to see why. Friendly locals, great food, even better beaches - and don’t forget to add great shopping to your list. That list extends to an interior aesthetic that is serene, tranquil and comfortable without being too formal. There is also a strong organic theme running through traditional Thai homes, with a lot of handcrafted timber items juxtaposed with opulent fabrics and gold themed religious objects.

Style tip: For affordable and practical outdoor furniture look no further than rattan. This not only looks handcrafted, but is lightweight and will give any outdoor entertaining area a subtle Asian theme.

Thai for handcrafted furniture

8. Vietnam for colour

Vietnam’s rich and unique history, combined with rapid recent modernisation has made this Southeast Asian country an intriguing melting pot of influences. There are obvious Chinese and French cultural elements in the food, dress and architecture which make for a unique melange that draws increasing numbers of Aussies. Its night markets are a cacophony of noise, colour and the aroma of the country’s distinctive cuisine - which make them a highlight of any visit there. They can also be a great source of inspiration for your next home decor project.

Style tip: Use lanterns to decorate your outdoor entertainment area to recreate a Vietnamese night market. This can be for a special occasion or make it a permanent feature to wow friends, family and house guests.

Vietnam for colour

9. New Zealand for rustic charm

New Zealanders fell in love with the Californian bungalow which has come to symbolise a rustic simplicity at odds with all the McMansions and bland apartments that dominate so many of our cities today. Think corrugated roofing, a picket fence, plasterboard and a verandah for watching the world go by. What is there not to like?

Style tip: Short of extending your patio into a verandah and buying a rocking chair, you could also put up a picket fence. Just make sure you paint it white.

New Zealand for rustic charm

10. Bali for beach style

Bali is the most visited international destination by Aussies, tempting us back with a mixture of exotic landscapes, catered villas, beaches and an active nightlife. No surprise that when we come home we want to recreate the harmonious feeling of our Balinese escape. Look to use natural materials if you want to incorporate Balinese beach style in your home, like natural timber, cane and bamboo.
Style tip: Build a thatched gazebo where you can lounge until your next holiday to Bali. And if you live in Queensland count yourself lucky, you can use it all year round.

Bali for beach style

          SM creara asistentes virtuales de los idolos para usted   
SM Entertainment está uniendo fuerzas con ObEN, una compañía de Inteligencia Artificial con sede en California, para crear su propia agencia de tecnología de entretenimiento.

La agencia con sede en Hong Kong, AI Stars, proporcionará a sus clientes una gran variedad de productos y servicios que combinan el talento de las celebridades con la innovación de AI. AI Stars será la primera agencia del mundo en especializarse en la tecnología de la IA de las celebridades.

El objetivo es crear contrapartes virtuales de celebridades de SM que miren, hablen y se comporten de la misma manera que sus versiones de la vida real. AI Stars está planeando incorporar estas estrellas virtuales en una amplia gama de aplicaciones de estilo de vida tales como dispositivos inteligentes, robots social-friendly, chatbots y vehículos.

Algunos miembros de EXO junto con Girls Generation y Super Junior ya han prestado sus voces para las primeras pruebas con tecnología de IA. El Jefe de Visión y Estrategia de SM Entertainment, Young Min Kim, hablaron sobre el proyecto. "Con el advenimiento de la era de la IA, S.M. Entertainment tiene como objetivo ofrecer una nueva forma de entretenimiento al combinar la innovadora tecnología de AI de ObEN con nuestro IP y contenido de celebridades. ...

Imagina un mundo donde tu celebridad favorita se convierta en una parte significativa de tu vida. Al  convertirse en su asistente virtual personal y realizar juntos su canción favorita, los consumidores tendrán infinitas posibilidades de experimentar "AI-tainment" mediante la combinación de AI y el entretenimiento.  - Young Min Kim, Director de Visión y Estrategia de S.M. Entretenimiento.
¡Esto será como llevar los musicales del holograma de SM Entertainment a un nuevo nivel de interacción!

A principios de este año, en el 2017 Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2017) celebrada en Las Vegas, Nevada, SM Entertainment presentó su prototipo de sistema, Wyth. En la foto: Wyth A.I Assistant S1 recomienda la música usando las voces de las celebridades.

Wyth mostro las voces de Tiffany de Girls 'Generation y Henry de Super Junior-M quienes hablaron en inglés. Wyth Smart Frame (Edición Karaoke) te permite cantar con tus artistas favoritos. 
SM Entertainment ya ha creado múltiples dispositivos diferentes para Wyth y está planeando grandes cosas con AI Stars y promete ser un gran cambiador de juego para la industria del entretenimiento.
Wyth Smart Band es un dispositivo de fitness basado en el entretenimiento que permite a sus usuarios hacer ejercicio con las estrellas.

          20 years on, freewheeling Hong Kong is more like the rest of repressed China   
Predictions that the communist mainland would become more like Hong Kong have proven false.

          Commenti su “Valerie Sweets – La gente mi chiede perché bevo” – Manuel Marchetti di DominizTot   
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          The 20th anniversary of Hong Kong handover   
It's the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong's handover.

          What Hong Kong can teach China   
WHEN Britain handed Hong Kong back to China 20 years ago, many politicians in the West suspended disbelief. Here was a prosperous society, deeply imbued with liberal values, being taken over by a coun ... - Source: www.economist.com
          Three to see: Manchester International Festival   
Glenn Brown's Dark Angel (for Ian Curtis) after Chris Foss (2002) (© Glenn Brown and Courtesy Galerie Max Hetzler)
The bands New Order and Joy Division are inextricably bound with Manchester, with their music an integral part of the northern citys cultural heritage and identity since the 1970s. The exhibition True Faith at Manchester Art Gallery (until 3 September) looks at the impact of the two groups on contemporary artists such as Mark Leckey, Barbara Kruger, Glenn Brown, Jeremy Deller and Julian Schnabel. True Faith is rooted in the social and cultural histories, and the psychological geography of Manchester itself, writes the co-curator Matthew Higgs in the exhibition catalogue. The show includes Peter Savilles cool, crisp album cover artwork for New Order and Joy Division (Factory Records label). The record sleeves draw on a vast range of influences: Movement (Factory Album, 1981) is inspired by the Italian Futurist artist Fortunato Deperos poster for the 1932 exhibition Futurismo Trentino. 

The German-Egyptian artist Susan Hefuna meditates on the themes of migration and separation, pondering also on what brings people together. These themes underpin an exhibition of her drawings, objects and a new digital work at the Whitworth Art Gallery (ToGather, until 3 September). Her Vitrines of Araf (2007) include found objects such as family photographs and flowers, donated by the wives and daughters of staff based at the Townhouse Gallery in Cairo. The focal point is a performance (9 July) that unites the various migrant communities in the city. Local residents, originally from 15 different countries including Iran, Sierra Leone, Trinidad, Pakistan, Albania and Kuwait, will trace individual paths through Whitworth Park, the organisers say. Dancers from Studio Wayne McGregor will also take part in the event. 

Samson Young, who has a doctorate in computer music and composition from Princeton University, is making his presence felt; the artist is representing Hong Kong at this years Venice Biennale and making waves in Manchester with a new five-part radio series. One of Two Stories, or Both (Field Bagatelles) will be broadcast live from Old Granada Studios (30 June-4 July), weaving songs, poetry and oral histories evoking mythic tales of 17th-century Chinese travellers bound for Europe. Young will unveil a sound and video installation at the Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art (7-16 July) that explores the relationship between the UK and China since Hong Kong was handed back to the Chinese authorities in 1997.   

          Hong Kong was supposed to be a world financial capital in a communist system. Contradiction?   

From the beginning, the idea that capitalist Hong Kong could remain a thriving, prosperous city under Communist China may have been a tale doomed to an unhappy ending.

But as this city marks the 20th anniversary of its return to China’s control after 156 years of rule by Britain, it is beset by...

          Seaspan Extends CEO Employment Agreement Discussions   
HONG KONG, China, June 30, 2017/ PRNewswire/- Seaspan Corporation announced today that it is continuing its discussion of employment agreement modifications with Gerry Wang, its Chief Executive Officer, Co-Chairman and Co-Founder, and expects to conclude discussions prior to the end of July. Larry Simkins, a member of the Board of Directors and Executive...
          BCA Terima Penghargaan Best Asian Bank   

Presiden Direktur PT Bank Central Asia Tbk Jahja Setiaatmadja (kanan) menerima penghargaan Best Asian Bank yang diserahkan oleh Publisher Haymarket Financial Media Jonathan Hirst (kiri) dalam ajang FinanceAsia Country Awards for Achievement 2017 di Four Seasons, Hong Kong, Kamis (29/6). Dalam ajang tersebut, BCA untuk kedua kalinya dianugerahi dua penghargaan sekaligus yakni Best Bank in Indonesia dan Best Asian Bank berkat kinerja perseroan yang cemerlang di dalam negeri dan di tingkat Asia. BCA dinilai mampu mempertahankan pertumbuhan laba yang solid dan pendanaan yang rendah di tengah persaingan sektor perbankan yang semakin kompetitif. AKTUAL/Istimewa Presiden Direktur PT Bank Central Asia Tbk Jahja Setiaatmadja (kanan) menerima penghargaan Best Asian Bank yang diserahkan oleh Publisher Haymarket Financial Media Jonathan Hirst (kiri) dalam ajang FinanceAsia Country Awards for Achievement 2017 di Four Seasons, Hong Kong, Kamis (29/6). Dalam ajang tersebut, BCA untuk kedua kalinya dianugerahi dua penghargaan sekaligus yakni Best Bank in Indonesia dan Best Asian Bank berkat kinerja perseroan yang cemerlang di dalam negeri dan di tingkat Asia. BCA dinilai mampu mempertahankan pertumbuhan laba yang solid dan pendanaan yang rendah di tengah persaingan sektor perbankan yang semakin kompetitif. AKTUAL/Istimewa

Posting BCA Terima Penghargaan Best Asian Bank ditampilkan lebih awal di Terhangat Terpercaya.

          Bạn dẫn Chủ tịch Tập Cận Bình tới đâu ở Hong Kong?   
Nếu được thì người dân Hong Kong đưa ông Tập Cận Bình thăm nơi nào ở đô thị 20 năm trước Anh trả về cho Trung Quốc?
          Hong Kong thả người biểu tình phản đối   
Cảnh sát Hong Kong vừa thả một số nhà hoạt động đã bị bắt giữ vì lên kế hoạch chuẩn bị một số cuộc biểu tình trước ngày kỉ niệm trao trả Hong Kong.
           China's President Xi inspects 'hard-working comrades' at Hong Kong's massive military parade    
As a part of his landmark visit to the politically divided country, Xi inspected more than 3,000 People's Liberation Army (PLA) troops.
          Hong Kong: rilasciati attivisti   
Fermati mercoledì per le proteste per anniversario ex colonia
          Hong Kong girl falls ill after drinking Chinese milk powder   
Hong Kong girl falls ill after drinking Chinese milk powder: govt HONG KONG (AFP) A three-year-old Hong Kong girl has developed a kidney stone after drinking Chinese milk powder, the government has said, as a major contamination scare spread to the
          7/1/2017: WORLD: Xi gives Hong Kongers a glimpse of the rule of iron   

The centrepiece of President Xi Jinping’s tour of Hong Kong yesterday sent a stern message to independence campaigners: the Chinese military’s biggest show of force in the city since the handover from Britain 20 years ago. On the eve of the 20th...
          7/1/2017: COMMENTARY: China’s Hong Kong litmus test   
As Chinese President Xi Jinping leads celebrations marking today’s 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s handover, he should heed the concerns of the former British colony’s last governor, Chris Patten, expressed in our pages yesterday. Warning the world...
          China’s Liaoning Departs Qingdao   
China’s aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, has departed its home port of Qingdao, recent imagery acquired by Planet confirms. China’s Ministry of Defense said the carrier would conduct routine training while also making a two-day port call in Hong Kong. This … Continue reading
          China flexes military muscle in Hong Kong during Xi's visit   
APTOPIX_Hong_Kong_China_20_Years_48080President Xi Jinping inspected troops based in Hong Kong on Friday as he asserted China's authority over the former British colony, where anti-China sentiment has been on the rise since Beijing took control 20 years ago.
          For sale - 1991 Unimax Girl Doll Blonde Hair Eyes Open and Close - $32   

Milwaukee 53293, WI, United States
Vintage 1991 Unimax Vinyl Girl Doll Blonde Hair Eyes Open And Close Brand: Unimax Condition: Very good conditioncounty of Manufacturer: Hong Kong Feel free to contact us with any questions and or concerns. Thank you for visiting our listing at Revealing Heavens Best.2016!

          Morning News Brief: GOP Continues Work On Health Care Bill, JAY-Z Releases New Album   
Republican senators are working on revisions to their health care plan. Also, Hong Kong is marking 20 years under Chinese rule, and rapper JAY-Z has a new album.
          Tips For Sha Tin Racecourse, Hong Kong 1 July 2017   

Today’s horse racing tips/selections for Sha Tin 1 July 2017. 06:00 Handicap 6f 2 None Other (8/1 Paddy Power) 06:30 Handicap 6f 4 Bright Star (7/1 Paddy Power) 07:00 Handicap 1m 3 Atomic Blast (12/1 Paddy Power) 07:30 Handicap 1m 2f 6 Best Reward (11/8 Paddy Power) 08:00 Handicap 6f 5 Jolly Gains (33/1 Paddy […]

The post Tips For Sha Tin Racecourse, Hong Kong 1 July 2017 appeared first on Asia Horse Racing.

          This Is a New Hong Kong   
Frank Sieren, Deutsche Welle
Before Britain returned its crown colony Hong Kong to Chinese rule on July 1, 1997 (above), the great Chinese reformer Deng Xiaoping promised that the horses would go on racing and the dancing would carry on. //
          Hong Kong, From Model City to Cautionary Tale   
Keith Bradsher, New York Times
When the British left 20 years ago, Hong Kong was seen as a rare blend of East and West that China might seek to emulate. Now, increasingly, it's a cautionary tale.
          Xi's Trip Will Cement Hong Kong's Ties to NAtion   
          HK aid sought on smuggled cars   
The Customs Department and the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) have asked Hong Kong authorities to seize two luxury cars smuggled out of Thailand despite them being impounded.
          TCIL's Subaru production plan on track   
Hong Kong-listed Tan Chong International Ltd (TCIL) remains committed to producing Subaru vehicles in Thailand in early 2019, starting with the Subaru Forester.
          China attacks Boris Johnson over 'incorrect' views on Hong Kong   

Foreign secretary’s hopes for a ‘fully democratic’ government are met with statement that ‘outsiders should not make incorrect remarks’

China criticised the “incorrect” views of the foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, as a war of words broke out between London and Beijing on the eve of the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to China.

Johnson released on Thursday what had seemed a relatively restrained statement marking the anniversary of the former British colony’s transfer back to China on 1 July 1997.

Continue reading...
          ‘We wanted democracy’: is Hong Kong's two-systems experiment over?   

As China tightens its grip on the city over which British rule ended 20 years ago, pro-democracy activists are still fighting against erosion of freedoms

For President Xi Jinping, the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to China is a moment to toast the reunification of a nation and hail its unstoppable rise. But for activists such as Eddie Chu, one of the leading lights of a new generation of pro-democracy politicians, it has become an occasion for something quite different.

“Boot-licking. Unprecedented boot-licking!” he says, a smile breaking across his face as he reflects on how many members of the local elite have chosen to mark two decades of Chinese rule by plastering their homes and businesses with patriotic slogans and red flags in the hope, he suspects, of currying economic favour.

Continue reading...
          Why Trump's $1.42bn Taiwan arms sale could backfire with China   

The president is laying down crude reminders before his meeting with Xi, but Beijing tends to react badly to bullying

The US announcement of a $1.42bn arms sale to Taiwan is a not-so-subtle warning shot across the bows of China’s president, Xi Jinping, who is due to meet Donald Trump for potentially tense bilateral talks at next week’s G20 summit in Hamburg. But Trump’s pre-emptive strike could backfire badly.

Official confirmation of the arms sale, under consideration since January, coincided with Xi’s officiation at an ostentatious military parade in Hong Kong on Friday, celebrating China’s reunification with what until 1997 Beijing regarded as a “renegade province” similar to Taiwan.

Continue reading...
          China flexes military muscle in Hong Kong during Xi Jinping visit   

Observers say show of strength part of growing effort to intimidate members of independence movement

The Chinese president, Xi Jinping, has presided over Hong Kong’s biggest military parade since the British handover in a tub-thumping show of strength that observers said was intended to intimidate members of the former colony’s nascent independence movement.

More than 3,100 troops gathered at the Shek Kong military base near Hong Kong’s border with mainland China on Friday morning to stage the review for Xi, who is on a rare tour of the city to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the the former British colony’s return to Chinese control on 1 July.

Continue reading...
          Hong Kong, 20 years, then and now – in pictures   

Hong Kong will mark the 20th anniversary of the handover from British to Chinese rule on 1 July 2017. AFP photographer Anthony Wallace takes a look at how the city has changed over those years

Parts of Hong Kong were ceded to Britain in perpetuity as a prize in the wake of the Opium Wars, but the majority of its territory was leased to the UK in 1898 for a period of 99 years.

By the time discussions between the UK and China began over the future of Hong Kong, the parts of the ceded city and those that were leased were entirely integrated.

Continue reading...
          Joanna Lumley: ‘My parents were terrifically light on the reins’   
The actress and activist recalls her childhood in Hong Kong and how her parents helped her when she became a single mother at 21

My first breath was of Indian air. When you are born into an army family, there is no real place that one can call home, but nothing can take away from the fact that I was born in Kashmir. My father, James, was born in what is now Pakistan, as was my elder sister, Aelene, while my mother, Thyra, spent part of her childhood in the Himalayas. My early childhood was spent in Hong Kong and Malaya [now Malaysia]. We came back to England when I was eight.

I was a noisy brat, a show-off. I found everything funny. I am an optimist and always was. I think I was born a clown. I tried to make my parents and sister laugh and I still like doing that. Entertaining people is the best thing in the world.

Continue reading...
          Największy kontenerowiec na świecie. Zobacz zdjęcia   
Ma długość czterech pełnych boisk piłkarskich i może pomieścić ponad 21 tys. kontenerów. W środę wpłynął do portu w Gdańsku największy kontenerowiec na świecie. OOCL Hong Kong ma regularnie zaglądać do Polski. Będzie kursował na trasach z Azji do Europy.
          Real Estate Investment in Hong Kong   

A part of the Guangdong province as well as the Special Administrative Region of China – Hong Kong is one of the most vibrant and intriguing destinations in the world. Hong Kong is also among the world’ most busiest and fast-paced cities. Hence, no wonder why real estate in Hong Kong is so much sought after. Real estate in Hong Kong is regarded as one of the costliest as well as the lucrative in the world. In other words, buildings and land in Hong Kong form a significant portion of the nation’s wealth and economy. Further, due to its attractive

The post Real Estate Investment in Hong Kong appeared first on 007AJ.com Article Directory.

          A review of things you need to know before you go home Friday; no rate changes, consent levels rise but not by enough, SMEs pay bills fast, Warminger fine set, swap rates zoom higher   

Here are the key things you need to know before you leave work today.

No changes today.

No changes today.

May data brought a rise in dwelling consents nationally, but they still lag well behind the growing demand in Auckland where their housing shortage continues to worsen. However, the Auckland data is showing a preference towards denser dwelling types.

Infometrics is reporting: "There was a solid lift in non-residential building consents in May, with consent values coming in at a respectable $605 mln for the month. A total of $6.5 bln non-residential consents have been issued over the past year, owing to strong growth in Auckland and other parts of the country outside Canterbury."

Dun & Bradstreet are reporting that the vast majority of businesses pay their bills on time. In fact, they say the high (80.5%) rate that do this suggests the overall economic environment "remains solid". And the average late payment period is less than six days. But their detail shows it is large businesses that are the laggards, paying on average 20 days late (an abusing their dominance on the trade payment relationship. It may be that our large businesses tend to be Aussie-owned, which has a real culture problem with on-time payment.) Auckland businesses are the slowest of all main regions, although they are improving the quickest. (Rural businesses pay the quickest. Utilities take the longest to pay.)

The penalty has been imposed on Mark Warminger, the ex Milford Asset Manager found guilty of market manipulation. The High Court has fined him $400,000 for two contraventions of the Securities Markets Act 1988. The judge found that the starting point for the two contraventions was a penalty of $500,000 and applied a reduction in penalty of $100,000 "to recognise Mr Warminger’s personal circumstances". Warminger has also automatically received a 5 year management ban. Both Warminger and the FMA are each appealing the original court result.

A major report
released today highlights the investment opportunities available in horticulture. Apples and avocados show meaningful potential. But the report says the Zespri single-desk system is holding that industry back.

Hong Kong has the most overpriced housing in the world, certainly when benchmarked against incomes. Now local analysts are calling the top of their market, with one of them predicting a -30% fall from here.

In Vancouver, tax data there is showing that their foreign buyer tax is not deterring foreign buyers. Tax collections from it are high, so many are just paying it. Plus, local real estate people say there are "a number of creative ways to get around the tax".

Local rates have raced higher and gotten steeper today in a major move up. The 2 year rate was up +5 bps to 2.33%, 5 year was up +8 bps to 2.87% and 10 year was up +9 bps to 3.36%. The 90 day bank bill rate is up +2 bps to 1.98%. (But this shift higher only puts the two year back up the level that we had for the Mid-March to mid-May period, and to be frank, it won't really be meaningful until the two year rate goes back up to 2.50% or above. And to be meaningful, the 90 day bank bill rate will need to rise to above 2.10%.)

The bond market changes initially hurt the Kiwi currency but it has since shrugged off the depression. In fact, we are now back to about the same levels we had at this time yesterday. The NZD is back at 73.2 USc. On the cross rates we are trading at 95 AUc and at 64 euro cents. That takes the TWI-5 to 76.9.

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          Siah Hwee Ang on China and the US addressing their beef, the growing global population, Asia's cost challenges, the return of the conglomerate, protectionism vs 'what's appropriate', Japan steps on to the Belt Road...gingerly, and more   

Today's Top 10 is a guest post looking at the latest international business happenings from Professor Siah Hwee Ang, the BNZ Chair in Business in Asia at Victoria University.

As always, we welcome your additions in the comments below or via email to david.chaston@interest.co.nz.

And if you're interested in contributing the occasional Top 10 yourself, contact gareth.vaughan@interest.co.nz.

See all previous Top 10s here.

1. China and US smoothing things out

China has lifted the 13-year import ban on some US beef.

Although the lift only applies to specific types of beef, the announcement represents another achievement under the Sino-US 100-day action plan to boost bilateral economic ties.

China banned imports of most US beef since 2003, after the spread of mad cow disease. Before the outbreak, the US was the largest supplier of beef for China.

China consumed 8 million tons of beef last year, and is the fastest growing consumer of beef.

The lifting of the ban represents competition for other suppliers of beef to China.

The world will be a better place if China and US can smooth things out. But there are implications for competition out there.

2. World population continues to grow

The report “World Population Prospects: The 2017 Revision” was published by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs last week. It suggests that the global population will reach 9.8 billion by the year 2050.

The revised report was a response to high rates of population growth in Africa and India.

The UN report predicts, the populations of 26 African countries will double between 2017 and 2050.

Nigeria, in particular is projected to surpass the U.S. as the third most populous country shortly before 2050.

China, the most populous country in the world for a while now, might see its population size overtaken by that of India by 2024.

The world population grows by around 83 million people each year. This in itself presents a lot of challenges around issues such as food security and sustainability.

3. Asia is attractive for expatriates, but is also starting to present cost challenges

The latest survey results on the cost of living for expatriates show that Asian cities make up 5 of the top 10 most expensive cities.

Hong Kong, Tokyo, Singapore, Seoul, and Shanghai are in the Asian cities that are becoming costly cities to live in.

The survey, conducted by HR firm Mercer, compares global prices for more than 200 items.

Three other Asian cities are in the top 25: Beijing (11), Osaka (21) and Taipei (25).

The north Asian cities of Tokyo, Seoul and Taipei have risen up the ranking significantly since the previous survey.

Asia has provided excellent employment opportunities in the last decade. In many cases with competitive salaries.

But have rising costs and newly-upskilled Asian residents brought about the end of this golden era?

The window is indeed closing for expatriates, but doors are still open for those seeking to establish employment in Asia.

4. Another milestone for China

Just last week, the MSCI Emerging Markets Index included China’s A-shares as part of its portfolio.

The index was created by Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) and is designed to measure equity market performance in global emerging markets.

The agreement to admit mainland-listed stocks, thereby allowing them to be traded by foreigners, comes after China’s three failed attempts at expanding its global market influence.

Analysts have said that China’s inclusion on the Emerging Markets Index could lead to as much as US$12 billion of capital inflows. This is because many overseas investors measure the performance of their portfolios against MSCI indexes and are obliged to buy shares in them.

The China Securities Regulatory Commission stated that the inclusion demonstrates international investors’ confidence in a stable Chinese economy with better prospects and in the steadiness of China’s financial market.

MSCI said the move has “broad support” from international institutional investors and was the result of a loosening of restrictions enacted by China on foreign ownership of ‘A’ shares yuan-denominated stock in mainland China-based companies. Ownership of the shares had once been limited to mainlanders.

5. Welcome back, conglomerates

Last week, Amazon Inc. spent US$14 billion on the purchase of grocery chain Whole Foods Market Inc.

The purchase brings disruption to the US grocery chain sector.

Whole Foods’ 460 stores will run head-to-head with Wal-Mart’s 4,700 stores.

Last year, Wal-Mart bought online retailer Jet.com in a move towards using e-commerce as a strategy.

The latest acquisition represents the challenge that brick-and-mortar-only and ecommerce-only companies face.

Price wars as a result of the increasing number of players and rising costs are forcing both sets of companies to look to more than one way of reaching out to customers.

This has led to heated battles between these companies.

We are bearing witness to the return of conglomerates, and high levels of intensity of rivalry as large conglomerates collide.

6. Protectionism at its prime? Or is it all about industry structure?

Airbus and Boeing have been involved in a 13-year World Trade Organisation (WTO) battle over illegal state aid.

Most recently, the WTO’s compliance panel has rejected several EU claims that the US had failed to withdraw all illegal subsidies to Boeing.

The WTO found all but one of the 29 issues highlighted by the EU to be in compliance with global trade rules.

Both sides are likely to appeal against parts of Friday’s ruling. That would take the EU case to the WTO’s appellate body, which is already considering a separate US case over state aid to Airbus.

Though there seems to be no winner from this the latest round, one can argue that it is ideal for both parties to stick to the status quo for the time being, rather than to lose a battle that could costs hundreds of millions.

Overall, Airbus maintained that illegal state support for Boeing had cost it roughly $100bn in sales over time.

These disputes raise questions over what constitutes protectionism and what’s considered appropriate as part of an industry structure.

Aircraft businesses are government-owned/linked, which also means it makes little sense to think that the owners cannot get involved. How does this differ from engagements by other state-owned or state-linked enterprises in the international business arena?

On a more fundamental level, to what extent do we allow governments to participate in business?

7. Japan starting to play on Belt Road Initiative … with conditions

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has announced that his government is ready to cooperate with China on the Belt and Road Initiative, but only under the right conditions.

Previously Japan, along with India had indicated they were not keen to get involved in the China-initiated project.

Japan’s involvement is contingent on the projects adhering to international norms.

Abe emphasized that it is critical for infrastructure to be open to use by all, and to be developed through transparent and fair procurement. Projects must also be economically viable and the debt sustainable.

Given the strained bilateral relationship that Japan and China have had in recent times, the slight shift in Japan’s stance represents a significant move to smooth the relationship. It also shows a willingness to continue to engage with Asia more deeply, and to avoid being left behind.

8. Opening the online floodgates for foreign participation in India

Despite being a very technology savvy country, the Indian market is hardly an easy one for foreign companies.

Only since last year has the country allowed foreign companies to sell groceries directly to consumers, on the condition that the produce and processed foods are sourced locally.

Due to this limited window of opportunity, only major players have been able to enter the markets.

The latest one is Amazon.com Inc., who has committed to investing around US$500 million over the next five years to build a nationwide network to stock and deliver groceries.

Nonetheless, the Indian government is working on streamlining the process of foreign direct investment into the South Asian country.

Competition can be intense, and in many cases already is intense: large markets are full of strong local players seeking to defend their turf from foreign players.

9. The yuan makes another move

The renminbi weakened 6.5% against the US dollar last year, its worst year ever.

But late last year, China tightened capital controls to curb downward pressure on the currency. That effort has largely succeeded, with the renminbi appreciating 1.2% in 2017.

Late last month, China’s central bank changed the way it guides the renminbi exchange rate, a move designed to enhance the government’s ability to prevent renminbi depreciation at a time when authorities are still concerned about capital flight.

In the recently revised formula, dealers will incorporate a “counter-cyclical adjustment factor” in their quotes, according to a statement on the website of the China Foreign Exchange Trading System.

The move will hedge against pro-cyclical fluctuation in market sentiment and alleviate the potential for ‘herd behaviour’ in the foreign exchange market.

The People’s Bank of China permits the US dollar’s value against the renminbi to fluctuate by 2% above or below a so-called “central parity rate” published each morning, also known as the midpoint or fixing. The midpoint is ostensibly formulated by compiling quotes from a group of dealer banks, but the price is understood to be largely determined by the central bank.

10. Shipping is back to business

The shipping industry has been in some trouble for many years now.

Container shipping, which accounts for 95% of movements of manufactured goods, went into a state of limbo when Hanjin Shipping of South Korea went bankrupt.

Lots of cargo was stranded at sea.

Since then, the industry has consolidated.

Freight rates went down at the same time. This has led to an intensification in competition. Containers, typically 20 or 40 feet long are increasingly being used for inland activities.

A.P. Moller Maersk A/S sold 70,000 of these containers last year alone. Many such containers are used in the construction of buildings and houses.

Signs over the last few months suggest that demand is finally growing faster than capacity.

The world cannot afford for shipping industry to suffer, as the ripple effect extends to trade. It looks like we’re set for a turnaround.

          China's Xi Jinping greeted by celebration and protest in visit to Hong Kong for handover anniversary   

China's Xi Jinping greeted by celebration and protest in visit to Hong Kong for handover anniversaryChina's Xi Jinping greeted by celebration and protest in visit to Hong Kong for handover anniversary

          For sale - 1968 C 10 Chevrolet Truck Original Right Front... - Auction   
Denmark 6333, Australia
Posting to: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Australia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, Japan, Sweden, Korea, South, Indonesia, Taiwan, Thailand, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Russian Federation, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait ...

          For sale - 85 wagoneer fender emblems - Auction   
Price 5570, Australia
Posting to: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Australia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, Japan, Sweden, Korea, South, Indonesia, Taiwan, Thailand, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Russian Federation, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait ...

          For sale - wagoneer / J10 / J20 / cherokee 4 wheel drive... - Auction   
Cherokee 3434, Australia
Posting to: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Australia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, Japan, Sweden, Korea, South, Indonesia, Taiwan, Thailand, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Russian Federation, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait ...

          Comment on Links 6/30/17 by JoeK   
Speaking of mainland China, most of them left, went underground, or were persecuted after '49. Taiwan and Malaysia along with Hong Kong became islands of traditional aka real-deal taiji while the CPC "improved" on the forms with their 24/28 step symmetrical and simplified wushu-type forms. Taiji is "only for people whose heart is on the left" as Cheng Man-ching is said to have once quipped. So looking to those places, thousands of encounters with people practicing in public over the years tells me there are quite a few very old Chinese men (usually) in parks doing taiji like they've been doing it a very long time, and since the percentage of Chinese who actually practice it, never mind seriously, is small, it can't be hurting. My first teacher, in his 60s at the time, was like a rock. He did however attribute it as much to his daily glass of Chinese schnaps (gasoline is as good an approximation of the taste as anything else--I was virtually forced to sample it) as the taiji practice. I knew an amazing martial artist a while back. He didn't succeed successfully in the market place like many other much less skilled than he, and when you're that good, it's hard and a hell of a shame to quit, so he didn't give up the dojo, and financial disaster, severe stress, marital problems, divorce, and then cancer put him down in his '50s. Hard to say how the all that taiji he practiced figured in that mix, for or against him.
          Hong Kong greets Xi with massive military parade, as activists released on bail   
Tanks, missile launchers and chanting troops greeted President Xi Jinping in politically divided Hong Kong Friday, in a potent display of Chinese military might to ...
          Appnovation Technologies: Appnovation and Agile in Asia: Why the Hong Kong Insurance Market Matters   
Appnovation and Agile in Asia: Why the Hong Kong Insurance Market Matters It's been 2 years since we set up Appnovation's APAC office in Hong Kong. One of our fastest growing business areas in Hong Kong is within the insurance sector, helping various companies with their agile, dev. ops. and Atlassian transformations and integrations. In recent years, insurance companies have face...
          Just one ‘CityTree’ unit purifies air at the same rate as 275 trees   
Green City Solutions, CityTree, Air PurifiyingPhoto courtesy of Green City Solution’s Instagram Nearly 90 percent of residents in cities around the world breathe polluted air, which is the single largest environmental health risk, according to the World Health Organization. To address this global problem, Green City Solutions created a mobile installation of specific moss culture that has large surface leaf areas and that can remove pollutants from the air. As Curbed NY reported, this new mossy air filter has been installed in Oslo, Paris, Brussels and Hong Kong. According to the team, CityTree has the same effect as up to 275 trees but requires 99 percent […]
          Quels sont les meilleurs aéroports français selon les voyageurs ?   

Fligh-Report, le site d’avis sur l’aérien, vient de publier son premier classement des meilleurs aéroports dans le monde et en France. Au niveau mondial, ce sont les plateformes asiatiques qui sont sollicitées avec les trois premières places occupées par Singapour (8,91/10), Hong Kong (8,55/10) et Tokyo (8.51/10). A quelle place se classe le premier aéroport […]

Cet article Quels sont les meilleurs aéroports français selon les voyageurs ? est apparu en premier sur KelBillet.

          4 Hal Ini Bikin Relasi AS dan China Merenggang?   

Dalam kurun seminggu terakhir, pemerintah Amerika Serikat nampak memandang China sebagai negara yang 'kurang disukai'. Dan, lewat sejumlah keputusan dan kebijakan luar negeri yang dilakukan, relasi kedua negara kini diduga merenggang.

Padahal, pada April 2017, pemimpin kedua negara --saat pertemuan resmi-- nampak seperti sekutu dekat. Presiden Donald Trump bahkan menjamu Presiden China Xi Jinping di resor mewah pribadinya, di Mar-a-Lago, Florida.

Hasil pertemuan itu bahkan mengejutkan dunia. Sesuai permintaan Presiden Trump, Presiden Xi berjanji bahwa China akan berkontribusi lebih banyak untuk membantu AS dalam isu Korea Utara.

Sebagai balasan, presiden ke-45 AS itu berjanji akan memberikan kelonggaran terhadap Tiongkok untuk sejumlah isu, misalnya seperti situasi di Laut China Selatan.

Pasca-pertemuan di Mar-a-Lago, Presiden Trump bahkan sempat menyebut koleganya dari Negeri Tirai Bambu itu sebagai, "orang hebat, aku bahkan memiliki relasi yang baik dengannya."

Namun kini, setelah munculnya sejumlah keputusan dan kebijakan luar negeri dari kedua negara pada seminggu terakhir di penghujung Juni 2017, hubungan harmonis AS - China perlahan merenggang.

Berikut, 4 penyebab yang diduga sebagai tonggak kerenggangan relasi Negeri Paman Sam - Negeri Tirai Bambu dalam kurun seminggu terakhir, seperti yang diragkum oleh Liputan6.com dari berbagai sumber (30/6/2017).


Saksikan juga video berikut ini

Washington, DC menjatuhkan sanksi dan pemutusan hubungan terhadap sejumlah entitas asal China. Sanksi itu diberikan oleh Kementerian Keuangan AS terhadap Bank of Dandong, sebuah perusahaan, dan dua individu pegiat finansial asal China.

Penjatuhan sanksi yang dilakukan Kemenkeu AS itu juga menandai kali pertama bagi Negeri Paman Sam untuk menerapkan wewenangnya --yang dilandasi US Patriot Act 2001-- pada entitas perbankan China.

Kemenkeu AS mengklaim bahwa entitas asal China itu bertindak sebagai "pipa penghubung" untuk mendukung aktivitas finansial Korea Utara yang diduga ilegal dan melanggar hukum. Demikian seperti yang dikutip dari CNN, 30 Juni 2017.

Kementerian yang dipimpin oleh Menteri Steven Mnuchin itu juga menilai sejumlah firma keuangan asal Korea Utara memanfaatkan "kedekatan" Bank Dandong dengan beberapa entitas bisnis asal AS guna memperoleh akses finansial alternatif dari Negeri Paman Sam. Bagi Washington, latar belakang itu cukup menjadi justifikasi pemerintah untuk menjatuhkan sanksi finansial.

"Firma atau entitas asal China (yang menjalin hubungan dengan Korut) juga tidak akan mendapatkan akses kepada lembaga finansial AS, baik secara 'langsung maupun tidak langsung'," tambah Mnuchin.

Akan tetapi, Kemenkeu AS berargumen bahwa sasaran sanksi yang sebenarnya bukan ditujukan kepada China, tetapi lebih kepada Korea Utara.

"Sanksi itu tidak ditujukan untuk China," jelas Menteri Mnuchin.

Pada kesempatan yang berbeda, penasihat keamanan nasional AS, H.R. McMaster, turut mengamini penjelasan Mnuchin.

"Sanksi itu bukanlah aksi untuk menekan China. Tindakan itu merupakan upaya kami untuk meminta China agar mampu lebih berkontribusi dalam masalah (Korea Utara) tersebut," kata McMaster.

Pakar politik juga memiliki penilaian serupa, bahwa sanksi Kemenkeu AS terhadap Bank Dandong merupakan upaya "penyampaian pesan" yang dilakukan Washington kepada Beijing agar dapat bertindak tegas terhadap Pyongyang.

"Pesan yang ingin disampaikan AS kepada China adalah, 'Hey, kami berusaha untuk menjalin kerja sama dengan kalian untuk masalah (Korea Utara) tersebut, tapi kalian harus melakukan upaya yang lebih maksimal," ucap Anthony Ruggiero, analis dari Foundation for Defense of Democracies.


Seusai pertemuan antara Presiden Trump dengan Presiden China Xi Jinping pada April 2017, Gedung Putih telah berkali-kali mengingatkan Tiongkok untuk semakin menguatkan tekanan ekonomi dan diplomatik terhadap Korea Utara.

Pasca-pertemuan itu, China telah menerapkan sejumlah kebijakan 'tegas' terhadap Korut. Seperti, menolak impor batu bara Pyongyang serta --diduga-- menghentikan ekspor suplai bahan bakar ke negara yang dipimpin oleh Kim Jong-un itu. Demikian seperti yang dikutip dari BBC, Kamis 27 April 2017.

Bahkan, media pemerintah China - Korut sempat mengalami peningkatan tensi, situasi yang jarang terjadi dalam riwayat kedua negara. Peningkatan tensi disebabkan imbauan Tiongkok terhadap Korea Utara terkait isu nuklir.

Akan tetapi, Presiden Donald Trump terus mendesak China agar semakin menambah tekanan ekonomi dan diplomatik terhadap Korea Utara. Karena, bagi Trump, Beijing belum melakukan tindakan yang efektif untuk menghentikan program nuklir Pyongyang, yang hingga kini masih berlanjut.

Namun, Beijing berdalih bahwa pengaruhnya ke Pyongyang amatlah terbatas.

Sebagian besar pihak juga menilai bahwa upaya AS untuk "menegaskan posisinya terhadap Korea Utara" melalui China, akan terus mengalami stagnasi. Bahkan kini, Presiden Trump pun mulai "menyerah" untuk meminta bantuan China terkait isu Korea Utara.

"Saya harap China dapat membantu kami untuk membuat Korea Utara lebih segan terhadap AS. Namun tampaknya, upaya mereka (China) tidak berhasil," ujar Presiden Trump lewat akun Twitter-nya, @realDonaldTrump, pada Juni 2017.


Amerika Serikat berencana menjual peralatan militer senilai US$ 1,42 miliar atau setara Rp 18,9 triliun kepada Pemerintah Taiwan.

Keterangan mengenai rencana penjualan ini disampaikan oleh Juru Bicara Departemen Luar Negeri AS, Heather Nauert. Penawaran tertuang dalam tujuh buah proposal penjualan.

"Jadi saat ini harganya sudah sampai US$ 1,42 juta," sebut Naubert seperti dikutip dari The Star, Kamis 30 Juni 2017.

Tidak cuma alutsista yang dijual AS ke Taiwan. Beberapa paket penjualan ini termasuk di dalamnya bantuan teknik untuk sistem radar, misil kecepatan tinggi anti-radiasi, terpedo, dan komponen rudal.

Penjualan tersebut dijelaskan Naubert merupakan bentuk dukungan AS terhadap pemeliharaan kapabilitas pertahanan Taiwan. Kementerian Pertahanan Taiwan juga mengatakan bahwa senjata baru itu ditujukkan untuk memperkuat keamanan udara dan laut serta sistem kewaspadaan domestik.

Sebelum AS benar-benar menjual senjata ke Taiwan, mereka harus menunggu persetujuan Kongres. Pembahasan permintaan penjualan itu, saat sudah masuk dalam sesi pembahasan kongres.

Penjualan senjata ke Taiwan merupakan yang pertama sejak Presiden Donald Trump berkuasa. Rencana AS itu membuat marah China.

"China memprotes keras tindakan AS (menjual senjata ke Taiwan). Itu jelas melanggar kebijakan 'One China'. Kami akan segera merespons tindakan tersebut," kata Duta Besar China untuk AS Cui Tiankai, seperti yang diwartakan oleh media pemerintah Tiongkok, People's Daily.

Terkait, datang protes dari China, Naubert mengimbau agar Beijing tak perlu khawatir. Sebab, terkait perseteruan kedua negara, sikap AS tetap konsisten dari awal.

"Tidak ada peluang bagi kami untuk merubah kebijakan 'One China'. Kami mengakui Beijing bukan Taipei," sebut dia.

Pakar menilai bahwa transaksi tersebut, mungkin disebabkan atas 'kekecewaan' AS terhadap China yang minim berkontribusi untuk menekan Korea Utara agar menghentikan program rudal nuklirnya. Dan, kebijakan Washington, DC, mungkin saja akan memprovokasi Beijing.

"Sebagian pihak menilai bahwa perdagangan itu dipicu relasi AS - China terkait isu Korea Utara, dan penjualan senjata ke Taiwan dianggap oleh AS mampu meningkatkan 'taji' mereka di hadapan Tiongkok. Saya sendiri tidak melihatnya sebagai bentuk provokasi. Namun, jika kebijakan itu dihubungkan dengan kebijakan lain, salah satunya sanksi terhadap bank China, kemungkinan (provokasi) dapat menjadi pertimbangan," jelas Profesor Zhang Baohui, pakar politik dari Lingnan University, Hong Kong.

Bukan pertama kali AS menjual senjata ke Taiwan. Hal ini dilakukan pertama kali pada Desember 2015 di saat Barack Obama masih memerintah.

Ketika itu, AS menjual alutsista seharga US$ 1,83 miliar. Penjualan tersebut termasuk dua kapal frigate dan kendaraan amphibi. Langkah tersebut juga mengundang kecaman keras dari China.

Kementerian Luar Negeri Amerika Serikat merilis hasil kajian tahunan yang membahas isu perdagangan manusia di dunia. Rilis itu mengkaji tentang negara yang diklaim oleh AS memiliki aktivitas perdagangan manusia terburuk di mancanegara.

Rilis tahunan itu bernama 'Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP) 2017, US State Department'. Sejumlah negara yang masuk dalam kategori kualitas terburuk menurut rilis tersebut di antaranya meliputi China, Rusia, Suriah, dan Iran. Demikian seperti yang turut diwartakan oleh CNN, Rabu 28 Juni 2017.

Menurut laporan TIP, "China tidak memenuhi ketentuan standar minimum maupun melakukan upaya yang signifikan untuk menghapuskan fenomena perdagangan manusia. Maka, negara itu yang semula berada di Tier 2, diturunkan menjadi Tier 3, tingkatan terendah."

Berdasarkan laporan TIP 2017, China dan sejumlah warga negaranya, terlibat dalam aktivitas seputar perdagangan manusia dan perbudakan moderen. Aktivitas itu meliputi, jual-beli manusia (anak, perempuan, dan laki-laki), tenaga kerja paksa, perdagangan dan eksploitasi manusia untuk kepentingan seksual, serta sistem kerja paksa yang disponsori pemerintah.

Saat memberikan pidato ulasan terkait TIP pada Selasa 28 Juni 2017 di Washington DC, Menteri Luar Negeri Rex Tillerson menilai bahwa China tidak melakukan upaya serius untuk menghentikan trafficking.

"China masuk ke Tier 3 karena tidak mengambil langkah serius untuk menghapus perdagangan manusia. Termasuk, isu pekerja paksa Korea Utara yang berada di Tiongkok," ujar Menlu Tillerson.

Menurut laporan TIP, "China tidak memenuhi ketentuan standar minimum maupun melakukan upaya yang signifikan untuk menghapuskan fenomena perdagangan manusia. Maka, negara itu yang semula berada di Tier 2, diturunkan menjadi Tier 3, tingkatan terendah."

Berdasarkan laporan TIP 2017, China dan sejumlah warga negaranya, terlibat dalam aktivitas seputar perdagangan manusia dan perbudakan moderen. Aktivitas itu meliputi, jual-beli manusia (anak, perempuan, dan laki-laki), tenaga kerja paksa, perdagangan dan eksploitasi manusia untuk kepentingan seksual, serta sistem kerja paksa yang disponsori pemerintah.

Saat memberikan pidato ulasan terkait TIP pada Selasa 28 Juni 2017 di Washington DC, Menteri Luar Negeri Rex Tillerson menilai bahwa China tidak melakukan upaya serius untuk menghentikan trafficking.

"China masuk ke Tier 3 karena tidak mengambil langkah serius untuk menghapus perdagangan manusia. Termasuk, isu pekerja paksa Korea Utara yang berada di Tiongkok," ujar Menlu Tillerson.

Sementara itu, pihak Kemlu China merespons TIP. Meski menolak hasil kajian Kemlu AS, namun pemerintah Tiongkok tetap bertekad untuk menghapuskan perdagangan manusia.

"Kami menolak penilaian AS terhadap negara lain yang dibuat berdasarkan pertimbangan hukum domestik mereka. Akan tetapi, kami bertekad untuk melawan trafficking dan bekerjasama dengan negara lain untuk isu tersebut," jelas juru bicara Kemlu China, Lu Kang.

          1-7-1942: Inggris Gempur Pasukan 'Rubah Gurun' Nazi Jerman    

Hari ini, pada 1942, pasukan Sekutu yang dipimpin Inggris menggempur manuver tentara Nazi Jerman yang berusaha merebut Afrika Utara.

Nazi berniat menganeksasi wilayah tersebut, menjadi bagian kekuasaan Reich Ketiga yang digagas Adolf Hitler.

Jelang pertempuran dimulai, beberapa bulan sebelumnya, pasukan Nazi Jerman telah berada dekat dengan El Alamein, sebuah kota berjarak 106 km dari Aleksandria, Mesir. Demikian seperti yang dikutip dari History.com, Jumat (30/6/2017).

Namun, sebelum mencapai El Alamein, pasukan yang dipimpin oleh Field Marshal Erwin Rommel --yang dijuluki sebagai 'Sang Rubah Gurun'-- menghadapi gempuran hebat dari pasukan Inggris.

Pada Juni 1942, Britania Raya mendesak pasukan Rommel hingga terpaksa harus bertahan di dekat Tripoli, Libya --lokasi terdekat pangkalan militer Jerman di kawasan Afrika Utara. Namun, dalam beberapa minggu, pasukan Sang Rubah Gurun berhasil membalikkan keadaan.

Dengan serangan udara dan tank, Rommel berhasil memukul mundur Inggris hingga ke pangkalan militer terdekat Britania Raya di Aleksandria. Dan memasuki penghujung Juni 1942, pasukan Sang Rubah Gurun telah berada 106 km dari El Alamein dan hendak merebut Aleksandria dari tangan Inggris.

Bagi Inggris, Aleksandria merupakan teritorial penting, karena menampung pangkalan militer Britania Raya yang menjaga Terusan Suez. Jika wilayah itu jatuh ke tangan Nazi, Sekutu khawatir bahwa pasukan Hitler akan mampu meluaskan kekuasaannya ke seluruh Afrika dan Asia.

Merasa di atas angin setelah Diktator Italia Benito Mussolini mengirim pasukan tambahan, Sang Rubah Gurun semakin memantapkan tekadnya untuk merebut bekas ibu kota Kerajaan Mesir Kuno itu dari tangan Inggris. Pasukan Mussolini pun menyerang terlebih dahulu.

Namun, di satu sisi, pasukan 'Sang Rubah Gurun' dan Italia meremehkan satu hal, yakni bahwa keduanya berada sangat jauh dari pangkalan militer mereka di Tripoli, Libya, yakni berkisar 1.788 km. Dan hal itu dimanfaatkan pasukan Inggris yang dipimpin oleh Jenderal Claude Auchinleck.

Sambil menunggu penyerangan Nazi-Jerman dan Italia, Britania Raya memperkuat kualitas serta kuantitas pangkalan militer mereka di Aleksandria. Inggris pun mendapat bantuan dari negara persemakmurannya, yakni India, Afrika Selatan, dan Selandia Baru.

Maka, tibalah tanggal 1 Juli 1942. Tepatnya pada pukul 03.00, Divisi Infanteri Ringan ke-90 Nazi-Jerman serta Divisi Panzer ke-15 dan ke-21, memulai manuver mendekat ke Aleksandria lewat El Alamien, menandai dimulainya Pertempuran El Alamein.

Tak dinyana, Sang Rubah Gurun luput akan strategi pasukan Inggris yang telah memperkuat barisan pertahanan mereka di Aleksandria hingga ke El Alamien.

Dan benar saja, pasukan Nazi-Jerman dihadang oleh Brigade Infanteri India ke-18 yang dilengkapi artileri dan meriam berat anti-kendaraan lapis baja. Panzer Sang Rubah Gurun berhasil diluluh-lantahkan oleh pasukan India.

Hingga Pertempuran El Alamein berakhir pada 27 Juli 1942, Nazi-Jerman dan Italia yang berkekuatan 96.000 pasukan --juga kelelahan sejak pertempuran Juni 1942-- harus kewalahan menghadapi pasukan Sekutu Inggris yang berjumlah 150.000 tentara, 179 tank, 1.000 artileri, dan 1.500 pesawat tempur.

Bukan itu saja momentum sejarah yang terjadi pada 1 Juli. Pada tanggal yang sama, tahun 1997, Hong Kong kembali ke pelukan China, setelah selama 150 tahun dikuasai oleh Inggris.

Upacara penyerahan kembali Hong Kong dilakukan di rumah Gubernur Hong Kong, Chris Patten. Secara simbolik, upacara ini dilakukan dengan cara menurunkan bendera Inggris.

Pada tanggal yang sama tahun 2013, negara pecahan Yugoslavia, Kroasia akhirnya bergabung dengan Uni Eropa.

Sementara pada 1961, mantan Istri pewaris pertama takhta Kerajaan Inggris Pangeran Charles, Putri Diana lahir di Norfolk Inggris.

          HISTORIPEDIA: Hong Kong Kembali ke Pangkuan China   
Tepat ketika tengah malam tiba pada 1 Juli 1997 secara resmi Hong Kong kembali ke pangkuan Negeri Tirai Bambu, China.
          The Indolence of the Filipinos   
English translation by Charles Derbyshire. The article by José Rizal, originally written in Spanish, was published in La Solidaridad in five installments,from July 15 to September 15, 1890.

PART ONE: Doctor Sanciano, in his Progreso de Filipinas, has taken up this question, agitated, as he calls it, and relying upon facts and reports furnished by the very same Spanish authorities that ruled the Philippines has demonstrated that such indolence does not exist, and that all said about it does not deserve a reply or even passing choice.

Nevertheless as discussion of it has been continued, not only by government employees who make it responsible for their own shortcomings, not only by the friars who regard it as necessary in order that they may continue to represent themselves as indispensable, but also by serious and disinterested persons: and as evidence of greater or less weight may be adduced in opposition to that which Dr. Sanciano cites, it seems expedient to us to study this question thoroughly, without superciliousness or sensitiveness, without prejudice, without pessimism. As as we can only serve our country by telling the truth, however, bitter it be, just as flagrant and skillful negation cannot refute a real and positive fact, in spite of the brilliance of the arguments; as mere affirmation is not sufficient to create something possible, let us calmly examine the facts, using on our part all the impartiality of which a man is capable who is convinced that there is no redemption except upon solid bases of virtue.

The word indolence has been greatly misused in the sense of little love for work and lack of energy, while ridicule has concealed the misuse. This much-discussed question has met with the same fate as certain panaceas and specifics of the quacks who by ascribing to them impossible virtues have discredited them. In the Middle Ages, and even in some Catholic countries now, the devil is blamed for everything that superstitious folk cannot understand or the perversity of mankind is loath to confess. In the Philippines one's and another's faults, the shortcomings of one, the misdeeds of another, are attributed to indolence. And just as in the Middle Ages he who sought the explanation of phenomena outside of infernal influences was persecuted, so in the Philippines worse happens to him who seeks the origin of the trouble outside of accepted beliefs.

The consequence of this misuse is that there are some who are interested in stating it as a dogma and others in combating it as a ridiculous superstition, if not a punishable delusion. Yet it is not to be inferred from the misuse of a thing that it does not exist.

We think that there must be something behind all this outcry, for it is incredible that so many should err, among whom we have said there are a lot of serious and disinterested persons. Some act in bad faith, though levity, through levity, through want of sound judgment, through limitation in reasoning power, ignorance of the past, or other cause. Some repeat what they have heard, without examination or reflection; others speak through pessimism or are impelled by that human characteristic which paints as perfect everything that belongs to oneself and defective whatever belongs to another. But it cannot be denied that there are some who worship truth, or if not truth itself at least the semblance thereof which is truth in the mind of the crowd.

Examining well, then, all scenes and all the men that we have known from childhood; and the life of our country, we believe that indolence does exist there. The Filipinos, who can measure up with the most active peoples in the world, will doubtless not repudiate his admission, for it is true there one works and struggles against the climate, against nature and against men. But we must not take the exception for the general rule, and should rather seek the good of our country by stating what we believe to be true. We must confess that indolence does actually and positively exist there, only that, instead of holding it to be the cause of the backwardness and the trouble, we regard it as the effect of the trouble and the backwardness, by fostering the development of a lamentable predisposition.

Those who have as yet treated of indolence, with the exception of Dr. Sancianco, have been content to deny or affirm it. We know of no one who has studied its causes. Nevertheless, those who admit its existence and exaggerate it more or less have not therefore failed to advise remedies taken from here and there, from Java, from India, from other English or Dutch colonies, like the quack who saw a fever cured with a dozen sardines and afterwards always prescribed these fish at every rise in temperature that he discovered in his patient.

We shall proceed otherwise. Before proposing a remedy we shall examine the causes, and even though strictly speaking a predisposition is not a cause, let us, however, study at its true value this predisposition due to nature.

The predisposition exists? Why shouldn't it?

A hot climate requires of the individual quiet and rest, just as cold incites to labor and action. For this reason the Spaniard is more indolent than the Frenchman; the Frenchman more so than the German. The Europeans themselves who reproach the residents of the colonies so much (and I am not now speaking of the Spaniards but of the Germans and English themselves), how do they live in tropical countries? Surrounded by a numerous train of servants, never-going afoot but riding in a carriage, needing servants not only to take off their shoes for them but even to them! And yet they live and eat better, they work for themselves to get rich, with the hope of a future, free and respected, while the poor colonist, the indolent colonist, is badly nourished, has no hope, toils for others, and works under force and compulsion! Perhaps the reply to this will be that white men are not made to stand the severity of the climate. A mistake! A man can live in any climate, if he will only adapt himself to its requirements and conditions. What kills the European in hot countries is the abuse of liquors, the attempt to live according to the nature of his own country under another sky and another sun. We inhabitants of hot countries live will in northern Europe whenever we take the precautions of the people there do. Europeans can also stand the torrid zone, if only they would get rid of their prejudices.

The fact is that in tropical countries violent work is not a good thing as it is in cold countries, there it is death, destruction, annihilation. Nature knows this and like a just mother has therefore made the earth more fertile, more productive, as a compensation. An hour's work under that burning sun, in the midst of pernicious influences springing from nature in activity, is equal to a day's work in a temperate climate; it is, then, just that the earth yields a hundred fold! Moreover, do we not see the active European, who feels the fresh blood of spring boil in his veins, do we not see him abandon his labors, during the few days of his variable summer, close his office -- where the work is not violent and amounts for many to talking and gesticulating in the shade beside a lunch stand -- flee to watering places, sit in the cafes or stroll about. What wonder then that the inhabitant of tropical countries, worn out and with his blood thinned by the continuous and excessive heat is reduced to inaction? Who is the indolent one in the Manila offices? Is it the poor clerk who comes in at eight in the morning and leaves at one in the afternoon with only his parasol, who copies and writes and works for himself and for his chief, or is it the chief, who comes in a carriage at ten o'clock, leaves before twelve, reads his newspaper while smoking and with his feet cocked up on a chair or a table, or gossiping about all his friends? What is indolent, the native coadjutor, poorly paid and badly treated, who has to visit all the indigent sick living in the country, or the friar curate who gets fabulously rich, goes about in a carriage, eats and drinks well, and does not put himself to any trouble without collecting an excessive fee?

Without speaking further of the Europeans in what violent labor does the Chinaman engage in tropical countries, the industrious Chinaman, who flees from his own country driven by hunger and whose whole ambition is to amass a small fortune? With the exception of some porters, an occupation that the natives also follow, he nearly always engages in the trade, in commerce; so rarely does he take up agriculture that we do not know of a single case. The Chinaman who in other colonies cultivates the soil does so only for a certain number of years and then retires.

We find, then, the tendency to indolence very natural, and have to admit and bless it, for we cannot alter natural laws, and without it the race would have disappeared. l Man is not a brute, he is not a machine, his object is not merely to produce, in spite of the pretensions of some Christian whites who would make of the colored Christian a kind of motive power somewhat more intelligent and less costly than steam. Man's object is not to satisfy the passions of another man, his object is to seek happiness for himself and his kind by traveling along the road of progress and perfection.

The evil is not that indolence exists more or less latently but that it is fostered and magnified. Among men, as well as among nations, there exist no only, aptitudes but also tendencies good and evil. To foster the good ones and aid them, as well as correct the evil and repress them, would be the duty of society and government, if less noble thoughts did not occupy their attention. The evil is that the indolence in the Philippines is a magnified indolence, an indolence of the snowball type, if we may be permitted the expression, an evil that increases in direct proportion to the periods of time, and effect of misgovernment and of backwardness, as we have said, and not a cause thereof. Others will hold the contrary opinion, especially those who have a hand in the misgovernment, but we do not care; we have made an assertion and are going to prove it.

PART TWO: When in consequence of a long chronic illness the condition of the patient is examined, the question may arise whether the weakening of the fibers and the debility of the organs are the cause of the malady's continuing or the effect of the bad treatment that prolongs its action. The attending physician attributes the entire failure of his skill to the poor constitution of the patient, to the climate, to the surroundings, and so on. On the other hand, the patient attributes the aggravation of the evil to the system of treatment followed. Only the common crowd, the inquisitive populace, shakes its head and cannot reach a decision.

Something like this happens in the case of the Philippines. Instead of a physician, read government, that is friars, employees, etc. Instead of patient, Philippines; instead of malady, indolence.

And just as happens in similar cases when the patient gets worse, everybody loses his head, each one dodges the responsibility to place it upon somebody else, and instead of seeking the causes in order to combat the evil in them, devotes himself at best to attacking the symptoms; here a blood-letting, a tax; there a plaster, forced labor, further on a sedative, a trifling reform. Every new arrival proposes a new remedy; one, seasons of prayer, the relics of a saint, the viaticum, the friars; another shower-bath; still another, with pretensions to modern ideas, a transfusion of blood. "It's nothing, only the patient has eight million indolent red corpuscles; some few white corpuscles in the form of an agricultural colony will get us out of the trouble."

So, on all sides there are groans, gnawing of lips, clenching of fists, many hollow words, great ignorance, a deal of talk, a lot of fear. The patient is near his finish!

Yes, transfusion of blood, transfusion of blood! New life, new vitality! Yes, new white corpuscles that you are going to inject into its veins, the new white corpuscles that were a cancer in another organism will withstand all the depravity of the system, will have more stamina than all the degeneration, all the trouble in the principal organs. Be thankful if they do not become coagulations and produce gangrene, be thankful if they do not reproduce the cancer!

While the patient breathes, we must not lose hope, and however late we may be, a judicious examination is never superfluous; at least the cause of death may be known. We are not trying to put all the blame on the physician, and still less on the patient, for we have already spoken of a predisposition, in the absence of which the race would disappear, sacrificed to excessive labor in a tropical country.

Indolence in the Philippines is a chronic malady, but not a heredity one. The Filipinos have not always been what they are, witnesses whereto are all the historians of the first years after the discovery of the Islands.

Before the arrival of the Europeans, the Malayan Filipinos carried on an active trade, no only among themselves but also with all the neighboring countries. A Chinese manuscript of the 13th century, translated by Dr. Hirth (Globus, September, 1889), which we will take up at another time, speaks of China's relations with the islands, relations purely commercial, which mention is made of the activity and honesty of the traders of Luzon, who took the Chinese products and distributed them throughout all the islands, for the merchandise that the Chinaman did not remember to have given them. The products which they in exchange exported from the islands were crude wax, cotton, pearls, tortoise shell, betel-nuts, dry goods, etc.

The first thing noticed by Pigafetta who came with Magellan in 1521, on arriving at the first island of the Philippines, Samar, was the courtesy and kindness of the inhabitants and their commerce. "To honor our captain," he says, "they conducted him to their boats where they had their merchandise, which consisted of cloves, cinnamon, pepper, nutmegs, mace, gold and other things; and they made us understand by gestures that such articles were to be found in the islands to which we were going."

Further on he speaks of the vessels and utensils of solid gold that he found in Butuan where the people worked in mines. He describes the silk dresses, the daggers with long gold hilts and scabbards of carved wood, the gold sets of teeth, etc. Among cereals and fruits he mentions rice, millet, oranges, lemons, panicum, etc.

That the islands maintained relations with neighboring countries and even with distant ones is proven by the ships from Siam, laden with gold and slaves, that Magellan found in Cebu. These ships paid certain duties to the king of the island. In the same year, 1521, the survivors of Magellan's expedition met the son of the Rajah of Luzon, who, as captain-general of the Sultan of Borneo and admiral of his fleet, had conquered for him the great city of Lave (Sarawak ?). Might this captain, who was greatly feared by all his foes, have been the Rajah Matanda whom the Spaniards afterwards encountered in Tondo in 1570?

In 1539 the warriors of Luzon took part in the formidable contests of Sumatra, and under the orders of Angi Sity Timor, Rajah of Batta, conquered and overthrew the terrible Alzadin, Sultan of Atchin, renowned in the historical annals of the Far East. (Marseen, History of Sumatra, chapter 20)

At that time, that sea where float the islands like a set of emeralds on a paten of bright glass, that sea was everywhere traversed by junks, paraus, barangays, vintas, vessels swift as shuttles so large that they could maintain a hundred rowers on a side (Morga); that sea bore everywhere commerce, industry, agriculture, by the force of the oars moved to the sound of warlike songs of the genealogies and achievements of the Philippine divinities. (Colin, Chapter 15)

Wealth abounded in the islands. Pigafetta tells us of the abundance of foodstuffs in Pragua and of its inhabitants, who nearly all tilled their own fields. At this island the survivors of Magellan's expedition were well received and provisioned. A little later, these same survivors captured a vessel, plundered and sacked it and took prisoner in it the chief of the Island of Paragua with his son and brother.

In this same vessel they captured bronze lombards, and this is the first mention of artillery of the Filipino, for these lombards were useful to the chief of Paragua against the savages of the interior.

They let him ransom himself within seven days, demanding 400 measures (cavanes ?) of rice, 20 pigs, 20 goats, and 450 chickens. This is the first act of piracy recorded in Philippine history. The chief of Paragua paid everything, and moreover, voluntarily added coconuts, bananas, and sugar-cane jars filled with palm wine. When Caesar was taken prisoner by the corsairs and required to pay twenty-five talents ransom, he replied, "I'll give you fifty, but later I'll have you crucified!" The chief of Paragua was more generous: he forgot. His conduct, while it may reveal weakness, also demonstrates that the islands ere abundantly provisioned. This chief was named Tuan Mahamud; his brother, Guantil, and his son, Tuan Mahamud. (Martin Mendez, Purser of the ship Victoria: Archivo de Indias.)

A very extraordinary thing, and one that shows the facility with which the natives learned Spanish, is that fifty years before the arrival of the Spaniards in Luzon, in that very year 1521, when they first came to the islands, there were already natives of Luzon who understood Castilian. In the treaties of peace that the survivors of Magellan's expedition made with the chief of Paragua, when the servant-interpreter died they communicated with one another through a Moro who had been captured in the island of the King of Luzon and who understood some Spanish (Martin Mendez; op cit.) Where did this extemporaneous interpreter learn Castilian? In the Moluccas? In Malacca, with the Portuguese? Spaniards did not reach Luzon until 1571.

Legazpi's expedition met in Butuan various traders of Luzon with their boats laden with iron, cloths, porcelain, etc. (Gaspar de San Agustin) plenty of provisions, activity, trade, movement in all the southern islands.

They arrived at the Island of Cebu, "abounding in provisions, with mines and washings of gold, and peopled with natives, "as Morga says: "very populous, and at a port frequented by many ships that came from the islands and kingdoms near India," as Colin says: and even though they were peacefully received discord soon arose. The city was taken by force and burned. The first destroyed the food supplies and naturally famine broke out in that town of a hundred thousand people, as the historians say, and among the members of the expedition, but the neighboring islands quickly relieved the need, thanks to the abundance they enjoyed.

All the histories of those first years, in short, abound in long accounts about the industry and agriculture of the natives; mines, gold-washings, looms, farms, barter, naval construction, raising of poultry and stock, weaving of silk and cotton, distilleries, manufactures of arms, pearl fisheries, the civet industry, the horn and hide industry, etc., are things encountered at every step, and considering the time and the conditions in the islands, prove that there was life, there was activity, there was movement.

And if this, which is deduction, does not convince any minds imbued with unfair prejudices perhaps, of some avail may be the testimony of the oft-quoted Dr. Morga, who was Lieutenant-Governor of Manila for seven years and after rendering great service in the Archipelago was appointed criminal judge of the Audiencia of Mexico and Counselor of the Inquisition. His testimony, we say, is highly credible, not only because all his contemporaries have spoken of him in terms that border on veneration but also because his work, from which we take these citations, is written with great circumspection and care, as well with reference to the authorities in the Philippines as to the errors they committed. "The natives," says Morga, in Chapter Seven, speaking of the occupations of the Chinese, "are very far from exercising those trade and have forgotten much about farming, raising poultry, stock and cotton, and weaving cloth. As they used to do in their Paganism and for a long time after the country was conquered."

The whole Chapter 8 of his work deals with this moribund activity, this much forgotten industry, and yet in spite of that, how long is his eighth chapter!

And not only Morga, not also Chirinco, Colin, Argensola, Gaspar de San Agustin and others agree to this matter, but modern travelers, after two hundred and fifty years, examining the decadence and misery, assert the same thing. Dr. Hans Meyer, when he saw the tribes not subdued cultivating beautiful fields and working energetically, asked if they would not become indolent when they in turn should accept Christianity and a paternal government.

Accordingly, the Filipinos in spite of the climate, in spite of their few needs (they were less then than now), were not the indolent creatures of our time, and, as we shall see later on, their ethics and their mode of life were not what is not complacently attributed to them.

How then, and in what way, was that active and enterprising infidel native of ancient times converted into the lazy and indolent Christian, as our contemporary writers say?

We have already spoken of the more or less latent predisposition which exists in the Philippines toward indolence, and which must exist everywhere, in the whole world, in all men, because we all hate work more or less, as it may be more or less hard, more ore less unproductive. The dolce far niente of the Italian, the rascarse la barriga of the Spaniard, the supreme aspiration of the bourgeois to live on his income in peace and tranquility, attest this.

What causes operated to awake this terrible predisposition from its lethargy? How is it that the Filipino people, so fond of its customs as to border on routine, has given up its ancient habits of work, of trade, of navigation, etc., even to the extent of completely forgetting its past?

PART THREE: A fatal combination of circumstances, some independent of the will in spite of men's efforts, others in offspring of stupidity and ignorance, others the inevitable corollaries of false principles, and still others the result of more or less base passions, has induced the decline of labor, an evil which instead of being remedies by prudence, mature reflection and recognition of the mistakes made, through a deplorable policy, through regrettable blindness and obstinacy, has gone from bad to worse until it has reached the condition in which we now see it.

First came the wars, the internal disorders which the new change of affairs naturally brought with it. It was necessary to subject the people either by cajolery or force; there were fights, there was slaughter; those who had submitted peacefully seemed to repent of it; insurrections were suspected, and some occurred; naturally there were executions, and many capable laborers perished. Add to this condition of disorder the invasion of Li-Mahong; add continual wars into which the inhabitants of the Philippines were pledged to maintain the honor of Spain, to extend the sway of her flag in Borneo, in the Moluccas and in Indo-China; to repel the Dutch foe; costly wars, fruitless expeditions, in which each time thousands and thousands of native archers and rowers were recorded to have embarked, but whether they returned to their homes was never stated. Like the tribute that once upon a time Greece sent to the Minotaur of Crete, the Philippine youth embarked for the expedition, saying goodbye to their country forever; on their horizon were the stormy sea, the interminable wars, the rash expeditions. Wherefore, Gaspar de San Agustin says: "Although anciently there were in this town of Dumangas many people, in the course of time they have very greatly diminished because the natives are the best sailors and most skillful rowers on the whole coast, and so the governors in the port of Iloilo take most of the people from this town for the ships that they send abroad . . . When the Spaniards reached this island (Panay) it is said that there were on it more than fifty thousand families; but these diminished greatly . . . and at present they may amount to some fourteen thousand tributaries." From fifty thousand families to fourteen thousand tributaries in little over half a century!

We would never get through, had we to quote all the evidence of the authors regarding the frightful diminution of the inhabitants of the Philippines in the first years after the discovery. In the time of their first bishop, that is, ten years after Legazpi. Philip II said that they had been reduced to less than two-thirds.

Add to these fatal expeditions that wasted all the moral and material energies of the country, the frightful inroads of the terrible pirates from the south, instigated and encouraged by the government, first in order to get a complaint and afterwards disarm the islands subjected to it, inroads that reached the very shores of Manila, even Malate itself, and during which were sen to set out for captivity and slavery, in the baleful glow of burning villages, strings of wretches who had been unable to defend themselves, leaving behind them the ashes of their homes and the corpses of their parents and children. Morga, who recounts the first piratical invasion, says: "The boldness of these people of Mindanao did great damage to the Visayan Island, as much by what they did in them as by the fear and fright which the native acquired, because the latter were in the power of the Spaniards who held them subject and tributary and unarmed, in such manner that they did not protect them from their enemies or leave the means with which to defend themselves, AS THEY DID WHEN THERE WERE NO SPANIARDS IN THE COUNTRY." These piratical attacks continually reduce the number of the inhabitants of the Philippines, since the independent Malays were especially notorious for their atrocities and murders, sometimes because they believed that to preserve their independence it was necessary to weaken the Spaniard by reducing the number of his subjects, sometimes because a greater hatred and a deeper resentment inspired them against the Christian Filipino who, being of their own race, served the stranger in order to deprive them of their precious liberty. These expeditions lasted about three centuries, being repeated five and ten times a year, and each expedition cost the island over eight hundred prisoners.

"With the invasions of the pirates from Sulu and Mindanao," says Padre Gaspar de San Agustin, (the island of Bantayan, near Cebu) "has greatly reduced, because they easily captured the people there, since the latter had no place to fortify themselves and were far from help from Cebu. The hostile Sulus did great damage in this island in 1608, leaving it almost depopulated." (Page 380)

These rough attacks, coming from without, produced a counter effect in the interior, which, carried out medical comparisons was like a purge or diet in an individual who has just lost a great deal of blood. In order to make headway against so many calamities, to secure their sovereignty and take the offensive in these disastrous contests, to isolate the warlike Sulus from their neighbors in the south, to care for the needs of the empire of the Indies (for one of the reasons why the Philippines were kept, as contemporary documents prove, ws their strategic position between New Spain and the Indies), to wrest from the Dutch their growing colonies of the Molluccas and get red of some troublesome neighbors, to maintain, in short, the trade of China and New Spain, it was necessary to construct new and large ships which, as we have seen, costly as they were to the country for their equipment and the rowers they required, were not less so because of the manner in which they were constructed. Padre Fernando de lost Rios Coronel, who fought in these wards and later turned priest, speaking of these King's ships, said, "As they were so large, the timber needed was scarcely to be found in the forests (of the Philippines?), and thus it was necessary to seek it with great difficulty in the most remote of them, where, once found, in order to haul and convey it to the shipyard the towns of the surrounding country had to be depopulated of natives, who get it out with immense labor, damage, and cost to them. The natives furnished the masts for a galleon, according to the assertion of the Franciscans, and I heard the governor of the province where they were cut, which is Laguna de Bay, say that to haul them seven leagues over very broken mountains 6,000 natives were engaged three months, without furnishing them food, which the wretched native had to seek for himself!"

And Gaspar de San Agustin says: "In these times (1690), Bacolor has not the people that it had in the past because of the uprising in that province when Don Sabiniano Manrique de Lara was Governor of these islands and because of the continual labor of cutting timber for his Majesty's shipyards, which hinders them from cultivating the very fertile plain they have.

If this is not sufficient to explain the depopulation of the islands and the abandonment of industry, agriculture and commerce, then add "the natives who were executed, those who left their wives and children and fled in disgust to the mountains, those who were sold into slavery to pay the taxes levied upon them," as Fernando de los Rios Coronel says; add to all this what Philip II said in reprimanding Bishop Salazar about "natives sold to some encomenderos to others, those flogged to death, the women who are crushed to death by their heavy burdens, those who sleep in the fields and bear and nurse their children and die bitten by poisonous vermin, the many who are executed and left to die of hunger and those who eat poisonous herbs . . . and the mothers who kill their children in bearing them," and you will understand how in less than thirty years the population of the Philippines was reduced one-third. We are not saying this: it was said by Gaspar de San Agustin, the preeminently anti-Filipino Augustinian, and he confirms it throughout the rest of his work by speaking every moment of the state of neglect in which lay the farms and field once so flourishing and so well cultivated, the town thinned that had formerly been inhabited by many leading families!

How is it strange, then, that discouragement may have been infused into the spirit of the inhabitants of the Philippines, when in the midst of so many calamities they did not know whether they would see sprout the seed they were planting, whether their field was going to be their grave or their crop would go to feed their executioner? What is there strange in it, when we see the pious but impotent friars of that time trying to free their poor parishioners from the tyranny of the encomenderos by advising them to stop work in the mines, to abandon their commerce, to break up their looms, pointing out to them heaven for their whole hope, preparing them for death as their only consolation?

Man works for an object. Remove the object and you reduce him to inaction. The most active man in the world will fold his arms from the instant he understands that it is madness to bestir himself, that this work will be the cause of his trouble, that for him it will be the cause of vexations at home and of the pirate's greed abroad. It seems that these thoughts have never entered the minds of those who cry out against the indolence of the Filipinos.

Even were the Filipino not a man like the rest, even were we to suppose that zeal in him for work was as essential as the movement of a wheel caught in the gearing of others in motion; even were we to deny him foresight and the judgment that the past and present form, there would still be left us another reason to explain the attack of the evil. The abandonment of the fields by their cultivators, whom the wars and piratical attacks dragged from their homes was sufficient to reduce to nothing the hard labor of so many generations. In the Philippines abandon for a year the land most beautifully tended and you will see how you will have to begin all over again: the rain will wipe out the furrows, the floods will drown the seeds, pants and bushes will grow up everywhere, and on seeing so much useless labor the hand will drop the hoe, the laborer will desert his plow. Isn't there left the fine life of the pirate?

Thus is understood that sad discouragement which we find in the friar writers of the 17th century, speaking of once very fertile plains submerged, of provinces and towns depopulate, of leading families exterminated. These pages resemble a sad and monotonous scene in the night after a lively day. Of Cagayan, Padre Agustin speaks with mournful brevity: "A great deal of cotton, of which they made good cloth that the Chinese and Japanese every year bought and carried away." In the historian's time, the industry and the trade had come to an end.

It seems that there are causes more than sufficient to breed indolence in the midst of a beehive. Thus is explained why, after thirty-two years of the system, the circumspect and prudent Morga said that the natives have forgotten much about farming, raising poultry, stock and cotton and weaving cloth, as they used to do in their paganism and for a long time after the country had been conquered!"

Still they struggled a long time against indolence, yes: but their enemies were so numerous that at last they gave up!

PART FOUR: We recognize the causes that awoke the predisposition and provoked the evil: now let us see what foster and sustain it. In this connection government and governed have to bow our heads and say: "We deserve our fate."

We have already truly said that when a house becomes disturbed and disordered, we should not accuse the youngest child or the servants, but the head of it, especially if his authority is unlimited. He who does not act freely is not responsible for his actions; and the Filipino people, not being master of its liberty, is not responsible for either its misfortunes or its woes. We say this, it is true, but, as well as seen later on, we also have a large part in the continuation of such a disorder.

The following other causes contributed to foster the evil and aggravate it; the constantly lessening encouragement that labor has met with in the Philippines. Fearing to have the Filipinos deal frequently with other individuals of their own race, who were free and independent, as the Borneans, the Siamese, the Cambodians, and the Japanese, people who in their customs and feeling differ greatly from the Chinese, the government acted toward these others with great mistrust and great severity, as Morga testifies in the last pages of his work, until they finally ceased to come to the country. In fact, it seems that once an uprising planned by he Borneans was suspected: we say; suspected, for there was not even an attempt, although there were many executions. And as thse nations wee the very ones that consumed Philippine products, when all communication with them had been cut off, consumption of these products also ceased. The only two countries with which the Philippines continued to have relations were China and Mexico, or New Spain, and from this trade only China and a few private individuals in Manila got any benefit. In fact, the Celestial Empire sent her junks laden with merchandise, that merchandise which shut down the factories of Seville and ruined the Spanish industry, and returned laden in exchange with the silver that was every year sent from Mexico. Nothing from the Philippines at that time went to China, not even gold, for in those years the Chinese trades would accept no payment but silver coin. To Mexico went a little more: some cloth and dry goods which the encomenderos took by force or bought from the natives at a paltry; price, wax, amber, gold, civet, etc; but nothing more, and not even in great quantity, as is stated by Admiral Don Jeronimo de Benelos y Carrilo, when he begged the King that "the inhabitants of the Manilas be permitted (1) to load as many ships as they could with native products, such as wax, gold, perfumes, ivory, cotton cloths, which they would have to buy from the natives of the country. . . Thus friendship of these peoples would be gained, they would furnish New Spain with their merchandise and the money that is brought to Manila would not leave this place."

The coastwise trade, so active in other times, had to die out, thanks to the piratical attacks of the Malays of the south; and trade in the interior of the islands almost entirely disappeared, owing to restrictions, passports and other administrative requirements.

Of no little importance were the hindrance and obstacles that from the beginning were thrown in the farmer's way by the rules, who were influenced by childish fear and saw everywhere signs of conspiracies and uprisings. The natives were not allowed to go to their labors, that is, their farms, without permission of the governor, or of his agents and officers, and even of the priests as Morga says. Those who know the administrative slackness and confusion in a country where the officials work scarcely two hours a day; those who know the cost of going to and returning form the capital to the little tyrants will well understand how with this crude arrangement it is possible to have the most absurd agriculture. True it is that for sometime this absurdity which would be ludicrous had it not been so serious, had disappeared; but even if the words have gone out of use other facts and other provisions have replaced them. The Moro pirate has disappeared but there remains the outlaw who infests the fields and waylays the farmer to hold him for ransom. Now then, the government, which has a constant fear of the people, denies to the farmers even the use of a shotgun, or if it does allow it does so very grudgingly and withdraws it at pleasure; whence it results with the laborer, who, thanks to his means of defense, plants his crops and invests his meager fortune in the furrows that he has so laboriously opened, that when his crop matures it occurs to the government, which is impotent to suppress brigandage, to deprive him of his weapon; and then, without defense and without security, he is reduced to inaction and abandons his field, his work, and takes to gambling as the best means of securing a livelihood. The green cloth is under the protection of the government, it is safer! A mournful counselor is fear, for it not only causes weakness but also in casting aside the weapons, strengthens the very persecutor!

The sordid return the native gets from his work has the effect of discouraging him. We know from history that the encomenderos, after reducing many to slavery and forcing them to work for their benefit, made others give up their merchandise for a trife or nothing at all, or cheated them with the measures.

Speaking of Ipion, in Panay, Padre Gaspar de San Agustin says: "It was in ancient times very rich in gold . . . but provoked by he annoyances they suffered from some governors they have ceased to get it out, preferring to live in poverty than to suffer such hardships." (page 378) Further on, speaking of other towns, he says: "Boaded by ill treatment of the encomenderos who in administering justice have treated the natives as thier slaves and not as their children, and have only looked after their own interests at the expense of the wretched fortunes and lives of their charges. . . (Page 422) Further on, "In Leyte, they tried to kill an encomendero of the town of Dagami on account of the great hardships he made them suffer by exacting tribute of wax from them with a steelyard which he had made twice as long as others. . ."

This state of affairs lasted a long time and still lasts, in spite of the fact that the breed of encomenderos has become extinct. A term passes away but the evil and the passions engendered do not pass away so long as reforms are devoted solely to changing the names.

The wars with the Dutch, the inroads and piratical attacks of the people of Sulu land Mindanao disappeared; the people have been transformed; new towns have grown up while others have become impoverished; but the frauds subsisted as much as or worse than they did in those early years. We will not cite our own experiences for aside from the fact that we do not know which to select, critical persons may reproach us with partiality; neither will we cite those of other Filipinos who write in the newspapers, but we shall confine ourselves to translating the words of a modern French traveler who as in the Philippines for a long time.

"The good curate," he says with reference to the rosy picture a friar had given him of the Philippines, "had not told me about the governor, the foremost official of the district, who was too much taken up with the ideal of getting rich to have time to tyrannize over his docile subjects; the governor, charged with ruling the country and collecting the various taxes in the government's name, devoted himself almost wholly to trade; in his hands the high and noble functions he performs are nothing more than instruments of gain. He monopolizes all the business and instead of developing on his part the love of work, instead of stimulating the too natural indolence of the natives, he with abuse of his powers thinks only of destroying all competition that may trouble him or attempts to participate in his profits. It maters little to him that the country is impoverished, without cultivation, without commerce, without industry, just so the governor is quickly enriched."

Yet the traveler has been unfair in picking out the governor especially. Why only the governor?

We do not cite passages from other authors, because we have not their works at hand and do not wish to quote from memory.

The great difficulty that every enterprise encountered with the administration contributed not a little to kill off all commercial and industrial movement. All the Filipinos, as well as all those who have tried to engage in business in the Philippines, know how many documents, what comings, how many stamped papers, how much patience is needed to secure from the government a permit for an enterprise. One must count upon the good will of this one, on the influence of that one, on a good bribe to another in order that the application be not pigeon-holed, a present to the one further on so that it may pass it on to his chief; one must pray to God to give him good humor and time to see and examine it; to another, talent to recognize its expediency; to one further on sufficient stupidity not to scent behind the enterprise an insurrectionary purpose land that they may not all spend the time taking baths, hunting or playing cards with the reverend friars in their convents or country houses. And above all, great patience, great knowledge of how to get along, plenty of money, a great deal of politics, many salutations, great influence, plenty of presents and complete resignation! How is it strange that the Philippines remain poor in spite of the fertile soil, when history tells us that the countries now the most flourishing date their development from the day of their liberty and civil rights? The most commercial and most industrious countries have been the freest countries. France, England and the United States prove this. Hong Kong, which is not worth the most insignificant of the Philippines, has more commercial movement than all the islands together, because it is free and is well governed.

The trade with China, which was the whole occupation of the colonizers of the Philippines, was not only prejudicial to Spain but also the life of her colonies; in fact, when the officials and private persons in Manila found an easy method of getting rich they neglected everything. They paid no attention either to cultivating the soil or to fostering industry; and wherefore? China furnished the trade, and they had only to take advantage of it and pick up the gold that dropped out on its way from Mexico toward the interior of China, the gulf whence it never returned. The pernicious example of the dominators in surrounding themselves with servants and despising manual or corporal labor as a thing unbecoming the nobility and chivalrous pride of the heroes of so many centuries; those lordly airs, which the natives have translated into tila ka castila, and the desire of the dominated to be the equal of the dominators, if not essentially, at least in their manners; all this had naturally to produce aversion to activity and fear or hatred of work.

Moreover, "Why work?" asked the natives. The curate says that the rich man will not go to heaven. The rich man on earth is liable to all kinds of trouble, to be appointed a cabeza de barangay, to be deported if an uprising occurs, to be forced banker of the military chief of the town, who to reward him for favors received seizes his laborers and his stock in order to force him to beg money and thus easily pays up. Why be rich? So that all the officers of justice may have a lynx eye on your actions, so that at the least slip enemies may be raised up against you, you may be indicted, a whole complicated and labyrinthine story may be concocted against you, for which you can only get away, not by the tread of Ariadme but by Dane's shower of gold, and still give thanks that you are not kept in reserve for some needy occasion. The native, whom they pretend to regard as an imbecile, is not so much so that he does not understand that it is ridiculous to work himself to death to become worse off. A proverb of his says the pig is cooked in its own lard, and as among his bad qualities he has the good one of applying to himself all the criticisms and censures he refers to live miserable and indolent rather than play the part of the wretched beast of burden.

Add to this the introduction of gambling. We do not mean to say that before the coming of the Spaniards the natives did not gamble: the passion for gambling is innate in adventuresome and excitable races, and such is the Malay, Pigafetta tells us of cockfights and of bets in the Island of Paragua. Cock-fighting must also have existed in Luzon and in all the islands, for in the terminology of the game are two Tagalog words: sabong and tari (cockpit and gaff). But there is not the least doubt that the fostering of this game is due to the government, as well as the perfecting of it. Although Pigafetta tells us of it, he mentions it only in Paragua, and ot in Cebu nor in any other island of the south, where he stayed a long time. Morga does not speak of it, in spite of his having spent seven years in Manila, and yet he does describe the kinds of fowl, the jungle hens and cocks. Neither does Morga speak of gambling, when he talks about vices and other defects, more or lest concealed, more or less insignificant. Moreover excepting the two Tagalog words sabong and tari, the others are of Spanish origan as soltada (setting the cocks to fight, then the fight itself), pusta (apusta, bet), logro (winning), pago (payment), etc. We say the same about gamblilng; the word sugal (jugar, to gamble), like kumpistal (confesar, to confess to a priest), indicates that gambling was unknown in the Philippines before the Spaniards. The word laro (Tagalog: to play) is not the equivalent of the word sugal. The word play (baraja, playing card) proves that the introduction of playing cards was not due to the Chinese, who have a kind of playing cards also, because in that case they would have taken the Chinese name. l Is nto this enough? The word taya (tallar, to bet), paris-paris (Spanish, pares, pairs of cards), politana (napolitana a winning sequence of cards), sapote (to stack the cards), kapote (to slam), monte, and so on, all prove the foreign origin of this terrible plant, which only produces vice and which has found in the character of the native a fit soil, cultivated circumstances.

Along with gambling, which breeds dislike for steady and difficult toil by its promise of sudden wealth and its appeal to the emotions, with the lotteries, with the prodigality and hospitality of the Filipinos, went also, to swell the train of misfortunes, the religious functions, the great number of fiestas, the long masses for the women to spend their mornings and the novenaries to spend their afternoons, and the nights for the processions and rosaries. Remember, that lack of capital and absence of means paralyze all movement, and you will see how the native was perforce to be indolent for if any money might remain to him from the trials, imposts and exactions, he would have to give it to the curate for bulls, scapularies, candles, novenaries, etc. And if this does not suffice to form an indolent character, if the climate and nature are not enough in themselves to daze him and deprive him of all energy, recall then that the doctrine of his religion teach him to irrigate his fields in the dry season, not by means of canals but with amasses and prayers; to preserve his stock during an epidemic with holy water, exorcisms and benedictions that cost five dollars an animal, to drive away the locusts by a procession with the image of St. Augustine, etc. It is well, undoubtedly, to trust greatly in God; but it is better to do what one can not trouble the Creator every moment, even when these appeals redound to the benefit of His ministers. We have noticed that the countries which believe most in miracles are the laziest, just as spoiled children are the most ill-mannered. Whether they believe in miracles to palliate their laziness or they are lazy because they believe in miracles, we cannot say; but he fact is the Filipinos were much less lazy before the word miracle was introduced into their language.

The facility with which individual liberty is curtailed, that continual alarm of all from the knowledge that they are liable to a secret report, a governmental ukase, and to the accusation of rebel or suspect, an accusation which, to be effective, does not need proof or the production of the accuser. With the lack of confidence in the future, that uncertainty of reaping the reward of labor, as in a city stricken with plague, everybody yields to fate, shuts himself in his house or goes about amusing himself in an attempt to spend the few days that remain to him in the least disagreeable way possible.

The apathy of the government itself toward everything in commerce and agriculture contributes not a little to foster indolence. Three is no encouragement at all for the manufacturer or for the farmer, the government furnishes no aid either when a poor crop comers, when the locusts sweep over the fields, or when cyclone destroys in its passage the wealth of the soil; nor does it take any trouble to seek a market for the products of its colonies. Why should it do so when these same products are burdened with taxes and imposts and have no free entry into the ports of the mother country, nor is their consumption there encouraged? While we see all the walls of London covered with advertisements of the products of its colonies, while the English make heroic efforts to substitute Ceylon for Chinese tea, beginning with the sacrifice of their taste and their stomach, in Spain, with the exception of tobacco, nothing from the Philippines is known; neither its sugar, coffee, hemp, fine cloths, nor its Ilocano blankets. The name of Manila is known only from those cloths of China or Indo-China which at one time reached Spain by way of Manila, heavy silk shawls, fantastically but coarsely embroidered, which no one has thought of imitating in Manila since they are so easily made; but the government has other cares, and the Filipinos do not know that such objects are more highly esteemed in the Peninsula than their delicate piña embroideries and their vey fine jusi fabrics. Thus disappeared our trade in indigo, thanks to the trickery of the Chinese, which the government could not guard against, occupied as it was with other thoughts; thus die now the other industries, the fine manufacturers of the Visayas are gradually disappearing from trade and even from use; the people, continually getting poorer, cannot afford the costly cloths, and have to be contented with calico or the imitations of the Germans, who produce imitations even of the work of our silversmiths.

The fact that the best plantations, the best tracts of land in some provinces, those that from their easy access are more profitable than others, are in the hands of the religious corporations, whose desideratum is ignorance and condition of semi-starvation of the native, so that they may, continue to govern him and make themselves necessary to his wretched existence, is one of the reasons why many tows do not progress in spite of the efforts of their inhabitants. We will be met with the objection, as an argument on the other side, that the towns which belong to the friars are comparatively richer than those which do not belong to them. They surely are! just as their brethren in Europe, in founding their convents, knew how to select the best valleys, the best uplands for the cultivation of the vine or the production of beer, so also the Philippine monks have known how to selecte the best towns, the beautiful plains, the well-watered fields, to make of them rich plantations. For some time the friars have deceived many by making them believe that if these plantations were prospering, it was because they were under their care, and the indolence of the natives was thus emphasized; but they forget that in some provinces where they have not been able for some reason to get possession of the best tracts of land, their plantations, like Bauan and Liang, are inferior to Taal, Balayan, and Lipa, regions cultivated entirely by the natives without any monkish interference whatsoever.

Add to this lack of material inducement the absence of moral stimulus and you will see how he who is not indolent in that country must needs be a madman or at least a fool. What future awaits him who distinguishes himself, him who studies, who rise above the crowd? At the cost of study and sacrifice a young man becomes a great chemist, and after a long course of training, wherein neither the government nor anybody has given him the least help, he concludes his long stay in the University. A competitive examination is held to fill a certain position. The young man wins this through knowledge and perseverance, and after he has won it, it is abolished, because. . . we do not care to give the reason, but when a municipal laboratory is closed in order to abolish the position of director, who got his place by competitive examination, while other officers, such as the press censor, are preserved, it is because the belief exists that the light of progress may injure the people more than all the adulterated foods. In the same way, another young man won a a prize in a literary competition, and as long as his origin was unknown his work was discussed, the newspapers praised it and it was regarded as a masterpiece but the sealed envelopes were opened, the winner proved to be a native, while among the losers there are Peninsulars; then all the newspapers hasten to extol the losers! Not one word from the government, nor from anybody, to encourage the native who with so much affection has cultivated the language and letters of the mother country!

Finally passing over many other more or less insignificant reasons, the enumeration of which would be interminable, let us close this dreary list with the principal and most terrible of all: the education of the native.

From his birth until he sinks into his grave, the training of the native is brutalizing, depressive and anti-human (the word "inhuman" is not sufficiently explanatory; whether or not the Academy admits it, let it go). There is no doubt that the government, some priests like the Jesuits and some Dominicans like Padre Benavides, have done a great deal by founding colleges, schools of primary instruction, and the like. But this is not enough; their efforts is neutralized. They amount ot five or ten years (years of a hundred and fifty days at most) during which the youth comes in contact with books selected by those very priests who boldly proclaim that it is evil for the natives to know Castilian, that the native should not be separated from his carabao, that he should not value any further aspirations, and so on; five to ten years during which the majority of the students have grasped nothing more than that no one understands what the books say, nor even the professors themselves perhaps; and these five to ten years have no offset the daily preachment which lowers the dignity of man, which by degrees brutally deprives him of the sentiment of self-esteem, that eternal, stubborn, constant labor to bow the native's neck, to make him accept the yoke, to place him on a level with the beast -- a labor aided by some persons, with or without the ability to write, which if it does not produce in some individuals the desired effect in others it has the opposite effect, like that of breaking of a cord that is stretched too tightly. Thus while they attempt to make of the native a kind of animal, yet in exchange they demand of him divine actions. And we say divine actions, because he must be a god who does not become indolent in that climate, surrounded by the circumstances mentioned. Deprive a man, then, of his dignity, and you not only deprive him of his moral strength but you also make useless for those who wish to make use of him. Every creature has its stimulus, its mainspring; man's is his self-esteem. Take it away from him and he is a corpse, and he who seeks activity in a corpse will encounter only worms.

Thus is explained how the natives of the present time are no longer the same as those of the time of the discovery, neither morally nor physically.

The ancient writers, like Chirino, Morga, and Colin, take pleasure in describing them a well-featured, with good aptitudes for any thing they take up, keen and susceptible and of resolute will, very clean and neat in their persons and clothing, and of good mien and bearing (Morga). Others delight in minute accounts of their intelligence and pleasant manners, of their aptitude for music, the drama, dancing and singing, of the faculty with which they learned, not only Spanish but also Latin, which they acquired almost by themselves (Colin); others of their exquisite politeness in their dealings and in their social life, others, like the first Augustinians, whose accounts Gaspar de San Agustin copies, found them more gallant and better mannered than the inhabitants of the Moluccas. "All live off their husbandry," adds Morga, "their farms, fisheries and enterprises, for they travel from island to island by sea and from province to province by land."

In exchange, the writers of the present time, without being more gallant than Herman Cortez and Salcedo, nor more prudent than Legazpi, nor more manly than Morga, nor more prudent than Colin and Gaspar de San Agustin, our contemporary writers we say find that the native is a creature something more than a monkey but much less than a man, an anthropoid, dull-witted, stupid, timid, dirty, cringing, ill-clothed, indolent, lazy brainless, immoral, etc. etc.

To what is this retrogression due? Is it the delectable civilization, the religion of salvation of the friars, called of Jesus Christ by euphemism, that has produced this miracle that has atrophied his brain, paralyzed his heart and made of the man this sort of vicious animal that the writers depict?

Alas! The whole misfortune of the present Filipinos consists in that they have become only half-way brutes. The Filipino is convinced that to get happiness it is necessary for him to lay aside his dignity as a rational creature, to attend mass, to believe what is told him, to pay what is demanded of him, to pay and forever to pay; to work, suffer, and be silent, without aspiring any thing, without aspiring to know or even to understand Spanish, without separating himself from his carabao, as the priests shamelessly say, without protesting against any injustice, against any arbitrary action, against an assault, against an insult; that is, not to have heart, brain, or spirit; a creature with arms and a purse of gold. . . there's the ideal native! unfortunately, or because of the brutalization is not yet complete and because the nature of man is inherent in his being in spite of his condition, the native protests; he still has aspirations, he thinks and strives to rise, and there's the trouble!

PART FIVE: In the preceding chapter we set forth the causes that proceed from the government in fostering and maintaining the evil we are discussing. Now it falls to us to analyze those that emanate from the people. Peoples and governments are correlated and complementary: a stupid government would be an anomaly among righteous people, just as a corrupt people cannot exist under just rulers and wise laws. Like people, like government, we will say in paraphrase of a popular adage.

We can reduce all these causes to two classes: to defects of training and lack of national sentiment.

Of the influence of climate we spoke at the beginning, so we will now treat of the effects arising from it.

The very limited training in the home, the tyrannical and sterile education of the rare centers of learning that blind subordination of the youth to one of greater age, influence the mind so that a man may not aspire to excel those who preceded him but must merely be content to go along with a march behind them. Stagnation forcibly results from this, and as he who devotes himself merely to copying divests himself of other qualities suited to his own nature, he naturally becomes sterile; hence decadence. Indolence is a corollary derived from the lack of stimulus and of vitality.

That modesty infused into the convictions of everyone, or, to speak more clearly, that insinuated inferiority, a sort of daily and constant depreciation of the mind so that it may not be raised to the regions of life, deadens the energies, paralyzes all tendencies toward advancement, and of the least struggle a man gives up without fighting. If by one of those rare incidents, some wild spirit, that is some active one, excels, instead of his example stimulating, it only causes others to persist in their inaction. "There's one who will work for us; let's sleep on!" say his relatives and friends. True it is that the spirit of rivalry is sometimes awakened, only that then it awakens with bad humor in the guise of envy, and instead of being a lever for helping, it is an obstacle that produces discouragement.

Nurtured by the example of anchorites of a contemplative and lazy life, the natives spend theirs in giving their gold to the Church in the hope of miracles and other wonderful things. Their will is hypnotized: from childhood they learned to act mechanically, without knowledge of the object, thanks to the exercise imposed upon them from the most tender years of praying for whole hours in an unknown tongue, of venerating things that they do not understand, of accepting beliefs that are not explained to them, to having absurdities imposed upon them, while the protests of reason are repressed. Is it any wonder that with this vicious dressage of intelligence and will the native, of old logical and consistent -- as the analysis of his past and of his language demonstrates -- should now be a mass of dismal contradictions? That continual struggle between reason and duty, between his organism and his new ideals, that civil war which disturbs the peace of his conscience
          The Philippines a Century Hence   
(by José Rizal Translated by Charles E. Derbyshire)

NOTE: This famous essay of Rizal entitled "Filipinas de cien años" was first published in La Solidaridad, Madrid, between September 30, 1889, and February 1, 1890

PART ONE: Following our usual custom of facing squarely the most difficult and delicate questions related to the Philippines, without weighing the consequences that our frankness may bring upon us, we shall in the present article treat of their future.

In order to read the destiny of a people, it is necessary to open the book of its past, and this, for the Philippines may be reduced in general terms to what follows.

Scarcely had they been attached to the Spanish crown than they had sustained with their blood and the efforts of their sons the wars and ambitions, and conquest of the Spanish people, and in these struggles, in that terrible crisis when a people changes its form of government, its laws, usages, customs, religion and beliefs; the Philippines was depopulated, impoverished and retarded -- caught in their metamorphosis without confidence in their past, without faith in their present and with no fond home of the years to come. The former rulers who had merely endeavored to secure the fear and submission of their subjects, habituated by them to servitude, fell like leaves from a dead tree, and the people, who had no love for them nor knew what liberty was, easily changed masters, perhaps hoping to gain something by the innovation.

Then began a new era for the Filipinos. They gradually lost their ancient traditions, their recollections, -- they forgot their writings, their songs, their poetry, their laws in order to learn by heart other doctrines, which they did not understand, other ethics, other tastes, different from those inspired in their race by their climate and their way of thinking. Then there was a falling-off, they were lowered in their own eyes, they became ashamed of what was distinctively their own, in order to admire and praise that was foreign and incomprehensible; their spirit was broken and they acquiesced.

Thus years and centuries rolled on. Religious shows, rites that caught the eye, songs, lights, images arrayed with gold, worship in a strange language, legends, miracles and sermons, hypnotized the already naturally superstitious spirits of the country but did not succeed in destroying it altogether, in spite of the whole system afterwards developed and operated with unyielding tenacity.

When the ethical abasement of the inhabitants had reached this stage, when they had become disheartened and disgusted with themselves, an effort was made to add the final stroke for reducing so many dormant wills and intellects to nothingness, in order to make of the individual a sort of toiler, a brute, a beast of burden and to develop a race without mind or heart. “Then the end sought was revealed, it was taken for granted, and the race was insulted, an effort was made to deny it every virtue, every human characteristic, and there were even writers and priests who pushed the movement still further by trying to deny to the natives of the country not only capacity for virtue but also even the tendency to vice.

Then this which they had thought would be death was sure salvation. Some dying persons are restored to health by a heroic remedy.

So great endurance reached its climax with the insults, and the lethargic spirit woke up to life. His sensitiveness, the chief trait of the native, was touched, and while he had the forbearance to suffer and die under a foreign flag, he had it not when they whom he served repaid his sacrifices with insults and jests. Then he began to study himself and to realize his misfortune. Those who had not expected this result, like all despotic masters, regarded as a wrong every complaint, every protest, and punished it with death, endeavoring thus to stifle every cry of sorrow with blood, and they made mistake after mistake.

The spirit of the people was not thereby cowed, and even though it had been awakened in only a few hearts, its flame nevertheless was surely and consumingly propagated, thanks to abuses and the stupid endeavors of certain classes to stifle noble and generous sentiments. Thus when a flame catches a garment, fear and confusion propagate it more and more, and each shake, each blow, is a blast from the bellows to fan it into life.

Undoubtedly during all this time there were not lacking generous and noble spirits among the dominant race that tired to struggle for the rights of humanity and justice, or sordid and cowardly ones among the dominated that aided the debasement of their own country. But both were exceptions and we are speaking in general terms.

Such is an outline of their past. We know their present. Now what will their future be?

Will the Philippine Islands continue to be a Spanish colony, and if so, what kind of colony? Will they become a province of Spain, with or without autonomy? And to reach this stage, what kind of sacrifices will have to be made?

Will they be separated from the mother country to live independently, to fall into the hands of other nations, or to ally themselves with neighboring powers?

It is impossible to reply to these questions, for to all of them both yes and now may be answered, according to the time desired to be covered. When there is in nature no fixed condition, how much less must there be in the life of a people, being endowed with mobility and movement! So, it is that in order to deal with those questions, it is necessary to presume an unlimited period of time, and in accordance therewith try to forecast future events.

PART TWO: What will become of the Philippines within a century? Will they continue to be a Spanish colony?

Had this question been asked three centuries ago, when at Legazpi’s death the Malayan Filipinos began to be gradually undeceived and, finding the yoke heavy, tried in vain to shake it off without any doubt whatsoever the reply would have been easy. To a spirit enthusiastic over the liberty of the country, to those unconquerable Kagayanes who nourished within themselves the spirit of Mgalats, to the descendants of the heroic Gat Pulintang and Gat Salakab of the Province of Batangas, independence was assured, it was merely a question of getting together and making a determination. But for him who, disillusioned by sad experience, saw everywhere discord and disorder, apathy and brutalization in the lower classes, discouragement and disunion in the upper, only one answer presented itself, and it was: extend his hands to the chains, bow his neck beneath the yoke and accept the future with the resignation of an invalid who watches the leaves fall and foresees a long winter amid whose snows he discerns the outlines of his grave. At the time discord justified pessimism -- but three centuries passed, the meek had become accustomed to the yoke, and each new generation, begotten in chains, was constantly better adapted to the new order of things.

Now then, are the Philippines in the same condition they were three centuries ago?

For the liberal Spaniards the ethical condition of the people remains the same, that is, the native Filipinos have not advanced; for the friars and their followers the people have been redeemed from savagery, that is, they have progressed; for many Filipinos ethics, spirit and customs have decayed, as decay all the good qualities of a people that falls into slavery that is, they have retrograded.

Laying aside these considerations, so as not to get away from our subject let us draw the brief parallel between the political situation then and the situation at present, in order to see if what was not possible at that time can be so now, or vice versa.

Let us pass over the loyalty the Filipinos may feel for Spain; let us suppose for a moment, along with Spanish writers, that there exist only motives for hatred and jealousy between the two races; let us admit the assertions flaunted by many that three centuries of domination have not awakened in the sensitive heart of the native a single spark of affection or gratitude; and we may see whether or not the Spanish cause has gained ground in the Islands.

Formerly the Spanish authority was upheld among the natives by a handful of soldiers, three to five hundred at most, many of whom were engaged in trade and were scattered about not only in the Islands but also among the neighboring nations, occupied in long wars against the Mohammedans in the south, against the British and Dutch, and ceaselessly harassed by Japanese, Chinese, or some tribes in the interior. Then communication with Mexico and Spain was slow, rare and difficult; frequent and violent the disturbances among the ruling powers in the Islands, the treasury nearly always empty, and the life of the colonists dependent upon one frail ship that handled the Chinese trade. Then the seas in those regions were infested with pirates, all enemies of the Spanish name, which was defended by an impoverished fleet, generally manned by rude adventurers, when not by foreigners and enemies, which was checked and an expedition of Gomez Perez Dasmariñas, which was checked and frustrated by the mutiny of the Chinese rowers, who killed him and thwarted all his plans and schemes. Yet in spite of so many adverse circumstances the Spanish authority had been upheld for more than three centuries and, though it has been curtailed, still continues to rule the destinies of the Philippine group.

On the other hand, the present situation seems to be gilded and rosy -- as we might say, a beautiful morning compared to the vexed and stormy night of the past. The material forces at the disposal of the Spanish sovereign have now been trebled; the fleet relatively improved: there is more organization in both civil and military affairs; communication with the sovereign country is swifter and surer; she has no enemies abroad; her possession is assured and the country dominated seems to have less spirit, less aspiration for independence, a world that is to it almost incomprehensible. Everything then at first glance presages another three centuries, at least, of peaceful domination and tranquil suzerainty.

But above the material considerations are arising others, invisible, of an ethical nature, far more powerful and transcendental.

Orientals and the Malays, in particular, are a sensitive people: delicacy of sentiment is predominant with them. Even now, in spite of contact with the Occidental nations, who have ideas different from his, we see the Malayan Filipino sacrifice everything -- liberty, ease, welfare, name for the sake of an aspiration or a conceit sometimes scientific, or of some other nature but at the least word which wounds his self-love he forgets all his sacrifices, the labor expended, to treasure in his memory and never forget the slight he thinks he has received.

So the Philippine peoples have remained faithful during three centuries, giving up their liberty and their independence, sometimes dazzled by the hope of the Paradise promised, sometimes cajoled by the friendship offered them by a noble and generous people like the Spanish, sometimes also compelled by superiority of arms of which they were ignorant and which timid spirits invested with a mysterious character, or sometimes because the invading foreigner took advantage of internecine feuds to step in as the peacemaker in discord and thus after to dominate both parties and subject them to his authority.

Spanish domination once established, was firmly maintained, thanks to the attachment of the people, to their mutual dissensions, and to the fact that the sensitive self-love of the native had not yet been wounded. Then the people saw their own countrymen in the higher ranks of the army, their general officers fighting beside the heroes of Spain and sharing their laurels, begrudged neither character, reputation nor consideration; then fidelity and attachment to Spain, love for the fatherland, made of the native encomendero and even general, as during the English invasion; then there had not yet been invented the insulting and ridiculous epithets with which recently the most laborious and painful achievements of the native leaders have been stigmatized; not then had it become the fashion to insult and slander in stereotyped phrase, in newspapers and books published with governmental and superior ecclesiastical approval, the people that paid, fought and poured out its blood for the Spanish name, nor was it considered either noble or witty to offend a whole race, which was forbidden to reply or defend itself, and if there were religious hypochondriacs who in the leisure of their cloisters dared to write against it, as did the Augustinian Gaspar de San Agustin and the Jesuit Velarde, their loathsome abortions never saw the light, and still less were they themselves rewarded with miters and raised to high offices. True it is that neither were the natives of that time such as we are now: three centuries of brutalization and obscurantism have necessarily had some influence upon us, the most beautiful work of divinity in the hands of certain artisans may finally be converted into a caricature.

The priests of that epoch, wishing to establish their domination over the people, got in touch with it and made common cause with it against the oppressive encomenderos. Naturally, the people saw in them learning and some prestige and placed its confidence in them, followed their advice, and listened to them in the darkest hours. If they wrote, they did so in defense of the rights of the native and made his cry reach even to the distant steps of the Throne. And not a few priests, both secular and regular, undertook dangerous journeys, as representatives of the country, and this, along with the strict and public residencia then required of the governing powers, from the captain-general to the most insignificant official, rather consoled and pacified the wounded spirits, satisfying, even though it were only in form, all the malcontents.

All this has passed away. The derisive laughter penetrates like mortal poison into the heart of the native who pays and suffers and it becomes more offensive the more immunity it enjoys. A common sore the general affront offered to a whole race, has wiped away the old feuds among different provinces. The people no longer have confidence in its former protectors, now its exploiters and executioners. The masks have fallen. It has been that the love and piety of the past have come to resemble the devotion of a nurse, who, unable to live elsewhere, desires the eternal infancy, eternal weakness, for the child in order to go on drawing her wages and existing at its expense, it has seen not only that she does not nourish it to make it grow but that she poisons it to stunt its growth and at the slightest protest she flies into a rage! The ancient show of justice, the holy residencia has disappeared; confusion of ideas begins to prevail; the regard shown for a governor-general, lie La Torre, becomes a crime in the government of his successor, sufficient to cause the citizen to lose his liberty and his home; if he obeys the order of one official, as in the recent matter of admitting corpses into the church, it is enough to have the obedient subjects later harassed and persecuted in every possible way; obligations and taxes increase without thereby increasing rights, privileges and liberties or assuring the few in existence; a regime of continual terror and uncertainty disturbs the minds, a regime worse than a period of disorder for the fears that the imagination conjures up are generally greater than the reality; the country is poor; the financial crisis through which it is passing is acute, and every one points out with the finger the persons who are causing the trouble, yet no one dares lay hands upon them!

True it is that the Penal Code has come like a drop of balm to such bitterness. But of what use are all the codes in the world, if by means of confidential reports, if for trifling reasons, if through anonymous traitors any honest citizen may be exiled or banished without a hearing, without a trial? Of what use is that Penal Code, of what use is life, if there is no security in the home, no faith in justice and confidence in tranquility of conscience? Of what use is all that array of terms, all that collection of articles, when the cowardly accusation of a traitor has more influence in the timorous ears of the supreme autocrat than all the cries for justice?

If this state of affairs should continue, what will be come of the Philippines within a century?

The batteries are gradually becoming charged and if the prudence of the government does not provide an outlet for the currents that are accumulating, some day the spark will be generated. This is not the place to speak of what outcome such a deplorable conflict might have, for it depends upon chance, upon the weapons and upon a thousand circumstances which man cannot foresee. But even though all the advantages should be on the government’s side and therefore the probability of success, it would be a Pyrrhic victory, and not government ought to desire such.

If those who guide the destinies of the Philippines remain obstinate, and instead of introducing reforms try to make the condition of the country retrograde; to push their severity and repression to extremes against the classes that suffer and think they are going to force the latter to venture and put into play the wretchedness of an unquiet life, filled with privation and bitterness, against the hope of securing something indefinite. What would be lost in the struggle? Almost nothing: the life of the numerous discontented classes has no such great attraction that it should be preferred to a glorious death. It may indeed be a suicidal attempt -- but then, what? Would not a bloody chasm yawn between victors and vanquished and might not the latter with time and experience become equal in strength, since they are superior in numbers to their dominators? Who disputes this? All the petty instructions that have occurred in the Philippines were the work of a few fanatics or discontented soldiers, who had to deceive and humbug the people or avail themselves of their powers over their subordinates to gain their ends. So they all failed. No insurrection had a popular character or was based on a need of the whole race or fought for human rights or justice, so it left no ineffaceable impressions, but rather when they saw that they had been duped the people bound up their wounds and applauded the overthrow of the disturbers of their peace! But what if the movement springs from the people themselves and based its causes upon their woes?

So then, if the prudence and wise reforms of our ministers do not find capable and determined interpreters among the colonial governors and faithful perpetrators among those whom the frequent perpetrators among those whom the frequent political changes send to fill such a delicate post; if met with the eternal it is out of order, preferred by the elements who see their livelihood in the backwardness of their subjects, it just claims are to go unheeded, as being of a subversive tendency; if the country is denied representation in the Cortes and an authorized voice to cry out against all kinds of abuses, which escape through the complexity of the laws; if in short, the system, prolific in results of alienating the goodwill of the natives, is to continue, pricking his apathetic mind with insults and charges of ingratitude, we can assert that in a few yeas the present state of affairs will have been modified completely -- and inevitably. There now exists a factor which was formerly lacking -- the spirit of the nation has been aroused and a common misfortune, a common debasement has united all the inhabitants of the Islands. A numerous enlightened class now exists within and without the Islands, a class created and continually augmented by the stupidity of certain governing powers, which forces the inhabitants to leave the country, to secure education abroad, and it is maintained thanks to the provocation and the system of espionage in vogue. This class, whose number is cumulatively increasing, is in constant communication with the rest of the Islands, and if today it constitutes only the brain of the country in a few years it will form the whole nervous system and manifest its existence in all its acts.

Now, statecraft has various means at its disposal for checking a people on the road to progress; the brutalization of the masses through a caste addicted to the government, aristocratic, as in the Dutch colonies, or theocratic as in the Philippines; the impoverishment of the country; the gradual extermination of the inhabitants; and fostering of feuds among the races.

Brutalization of the Malayan Filipinos has been demonstrated to be impossible. In spite of the dark horde of friars in whose hands rests the instruction of youth, which miserably wastes years and years in the colleges, issuing therefrom tired, weary and disgusted with books: in spite of the censorship which tries to close every avenue to progress; in spite of all the pupils, confessionals, books, and missals that inculcate hatred toward not only all scientific knowledge but even toward the Spanish language itself; in spite of this whole elaborate system perfected and tenaciously operated by those who wish to keep the Islands in holy ignorance; there exist writers, freethinkers, historians, philosophers, chemists, physicians, artists, and jurists. Enlightenment is spreading and the persecution it suffers quickens it. No, the divine flame of thought is inextinguishable in the Filipino people and somehow or other it will shine forth and compel recognition. It is impossible to brutalize the inhabitants of the Philippines!

May poverty arrest their development? Perhaps, but it is a very dangerous means. Experience has everywhere shown us and especially in the Philippines, that the classes which are better off have always been addicted to peace and order, because they live comparatively better and may be the losers in civil disturbances. Wealth brings with it refinement, the spirit of conservation, while poverty inspires adventurous ideas, the desire to change things and has little care for life. Machiavelli himself held this means of subjecting of a people to be perilous, observing that loss of welfare stirs up more obdurate enemies than loss of life. Moreover, when there are wealth and abundance, there is less discontent, less compliant and the government, itself wealthier, has more means for sustaining itself. On the other hand, there occurs in a poor country what becomes in a house where bread is wanting? And further, of what use to the mother country would a poor and lean colony be?

Neither is possible gradually to exterminate the inhabitants. The Philippine races, like all the Malays, do not succumb before the foreigner, like the Australians, the Polynesians and the Indians of the New World. In spite of the numerous wars the Filipinos have had to carry on, in spite of the epidemics that have periodically visited them, their number has trebled, as has that of the Malays of Java and the Moluccas. The Filipino embraces civilization and lives and thrives in every clime, in contact with every people. Rum, that poison which exterminated the natives of the Pacific islands, has no power in the Philippines, but rather, comparison of their present condition with that described by the earlier historians, makes it appear that the Filipinos have grown soberer. The petty wars with the inhabitants of the south consume only the soldiers, people who by their fidelity to the Spanish flag, far from being a menace, are surely one of its solidest supports.

Three remains the fostering of internecine feuds among the provinces.

This was formerly possible, when communication from one island to another was rare and difficult, when there were not steamers or telegraph lines, when the regiments were formed according to the various provinces, when some provinces were cajoled by awards of privileges and honor and other were protected from the strongest. But now that the privileges have disappeared, that through a spirit of distrust the regiments have been reorganized, that the inhabitants move from one island to another, communication and exchange of impressions naturally increase, and as all see themselves threatened by the same peril and wounded in the same feelings, they clasp hands and make common cause. It is true that the union is not yet wholly perfected, but to this end the measures of good government, the vexations to which the townspeople are subjected, the frequent changes of officials, the scarcity of centers of learning, forces of the youth of all the islands to come together and begin to get acquainted. The journeys to Europe contribute not a little to tighten the bonds, for abroad the inhabitants of most widely separated provinces are impressed by their patriotic feelings, from sailors even to the wealthiest merchants, and at the sight of modern liberty and the memory of the misfortunes of their country, they embrace and call one another brothers.

In short, then, the advancement and ethical progress of the Philippines are inevitable, are decreed by fate.

The Islands cannot remain in the condition they are without requiring from the sovereign country more liberty. Mutatis mutandis. For new men, a new social order.

To wish that the alleged child remain in its swaddling clothes is to risk that it may turn against the nurse and flee, tearing away the old rags that bind it.

The Philippines, then, will remain under Spanish domination, but with more law and greater liberty, or they will declare themselves independent after steeping themselves and the mother country in blood.

As no one should desire or hope for such an unfortunate rupture, which would be an evil for all and only the final argument in the most desperate predicament, let us see by what forms of peaceful evolution the Islands may remain subjected to the Spanish authority, with the very least detriment to the rights, interests and dignity of both parties.

PART THREE: If the Philippines must remain under the control of Spain, they will necessarily have to be transformed in a political sense, for the course of their history and the needs of their inhabitants so required. This we demonstrated in the preceding article.

We also said that this transformation will be violent and fatal if it proceeds from the ranks of the people, but peaceful and fruitful if it emanates from the upper classes.

Some governors have realized this truth, and impelled by their patriotism, have been trying to introduce needed reforms in order to forestall events. But notwithstanding all that have been ordered up to the present time, they have produced scanty results, for the government as well as for the country. Even those that promised only a happy issue have at times caused injury, for the simple reason that they have been based upon unstable grounds.

We said and once more we repeat, and all will ever assert, that reforms, which have a palliative character, are not only ineffectual but even prejudicial when the government is confronted with evils that must be cured radically. And were we not convinced of the honesty and rectitude of some governors, we would be tempted to say that all the partial reforms are only plasters and salves of a physician, who, not knowing how to cure the cancer, and not daring to root it out, tries in this way to alleviate the patient’s sufferings or to temporize with the cowardice of the timid and ignorant.

All the reforms of our liberal ministers were, have been, are, and will be good -- when carried out.

When we think of them, we are reminded of the dieting of Sancho Panza in this Barataria Island. He took his seat at a sumptuous and well-appointed table “covered with fruit and many varieties of food differently prepared,” but between the wretch’s mouth and each dish the physician Pedro Rezio interposed his wand, saying, “Take it away!” The dish removed, Sancho was as hungry as ever. Truth is that the despotic Pedro Rezio gave reasons, which seem to have been written by Cervantes especially for the colonial administrations. “You must not eat, Mr. Governor, except according to the usage and custom of other islands, where there are governors.” Something was found to be wrong with each dish: one was too hot, another too moist, and so on, just like our Pedro Rezio on both sides of the sea. Great good did his cook’s skill do Sancho!

In the case of our country, the reforms take the place of the dishes, the Philippines are Sancho, while the part of the quack physician is played by many persons interested in not having the dishes touched, perhaps that they may themselves get the benefit of them.

The result is that the long suffering Sancho, or the Philippines, misses his liberty, rejects all government and ends up by rebelling against his quack physician.

In this manner, so long as the Philippines have no liberty of the press, have no voice in the Cortes to make known to the government and to the nation whether or not their decrees have been duly obeyed, whether or not these benefit the country, all the able efforts of the colonial ministers will meet the fate of the dishes in Barataria Island.

The minister, then, who wants his reforms to be reforms, must begin by declaring the press in the Philippines free and by instituting Filipino delegates.

The free press in the Philippines, because their complaints rarely ever reach the Peninsula, very rarely, and if they do they are so secret, so mysterious that no newspaper dares to publish them, or if it does reproduce them, it does so tardily and badly.

A government that rules a country from a great distance is the one that has the most need for a free press more so even than the government of the home country, if it wishes to rule rightly and fitly. The government that governs in a country may even dispense with the press (if it can), because it is on the ground, because it has eyes and ears, and because it directly observes what it rules and administers. But the government that governs from afar absolutely requires that the truth and the facts reach its knowledge by every possible channel so that it may weigh and estimate them better, and this need increases when a country like the Philippines is concerned, where the inhabitants speak and complain in a language unknown to the authorities. To govern in any other way may also be called governing, but it is to govern badly. It amounts to pronouncing judgment after hearing only one of the parties; it is steering a ship without reckoning its conditions, the state of the sea, the reefs and shoals, the direction of the winds and currents. It is managing a house by endeavoring merely to give it polish and a fine appearance without watching the money chest, without looking after the servants and the members of the family.

But routine is a declivity down which many governments slide, and routine says that freedom of the press is dangerous. Let us see what History says: uprisings and revolutions have always occurred in countries tyrannized over, in countries where human thought and the human heart have been forced to remain silent.

If the great Napoleon had not tyrannized over the press, perhaps it would have warned him of the peril into which he was hurled and have made him understand that the people were weary and the earth wanted peace. Perhaps his genius, instead of being dissipated in foreign aggrandizement would have become intensive in laboring to strengthen his position and thus have assured it. Spain herself records in her history more revolutions when the press was gagged. What colonies have become independent while they had a free press and enjoyed liberty? Is it preferable to govern blindly or to govern with ample knowledge?

Someone will answer that in colonies with a free press, the prestige of the rulers, that prop of false governments, will be greatly imperiled. We answer that the prestige of the nation is not by abetting and concealing abuses, but by rebuking and punishing them. Moreover, to this prestige is applicable what Napoleon said about great men and their valets. Who endure and know all the false pretensions and petty persecutions of those sham gods, do not need a free press in order to recognize them; they have long ago lost their prestige. The free press is needed by the government, the government which still dreams of the prestige which it builds upon mined ground.

We say the same about the Filipino representatives.

What risks does the government see in them? One of three things, either that they will prove unruly, become political trimmers, or act properly.

Supposing that we should yield to the most absurd pessimism and admit the insult, great for the Philippines but still greater for Spain, that all the representatives would be separatists and that in all their contentions they would advocate separatist ideas; does not a patriotic Spanish majority exist there, is there not present there the vigilance of the governing powers to combat and oppose such intentions? And would not this be better than the discontent that ferments and expands in the secrecy of the home, in the huts and in the field? Certainly the Spanish people does not spare its blood where patriotism is concerned but would not a struggle of principles in parliament be preferable to the exchange of shot in swampy lands, three thousand leagues from home in impenetrable forests, under a burning sun or amid torrential rains? These pacific struggles of ideas, besides being a thermometer for the government, have the advantage of being cheap and glorious, because the Spanish parliament especially abounds in oratorical paladins invincible in debate. Moreover, it is said that the Filipinos are indolent and peaceful -- then what need for government fear? Hasn’t it any influence in the elections? Frankly speaking, it is a great compliment to the separatists to fear them in the midst of the Cortes of the nation.

Now then, if the real objection to the Filipino delegates, is that they smell like Igorots, which so disturbed in open Senate the doughty General Salamanca, then Don Sinibaldo de Mas, who saw the Igorots in person and wanted to live with them, can affirm that they will smell at worst like powder, and Señor Salamanca undoubtedly has no fear of that odor. And if this were all, the Filipinos, who there in their own country are accustomed to bathe every day, when they become representatives may give up such a dirty custom, at least during the legislative session so as not to offend the delicate nostrils of Salamanca with the odor of the bath.

It is useless to answer certain objections of some fine writers regarding the rather brown skins and faces with somewhat wide nostrils. Questions of taste are peculiar to each race. China, for example, which has four hundred million inhabitants and a very ancient civilization, considers all Europeans ugly and calls them “fankwai”, or red devils. Its taste has a hundred million more adherents than the Europeans. Moreover, if this is the question, we would have to admit the inferiority of the Latins, especially the Spaniards, to the Saxons, who are much whiter.

And so long as it is not asserted that the Spanish parliament is an assemblage of Adonises, Antoniuses, pretty boys and other like paragons, so long as the purpose of resorting thither is to legislate and not to philosophize or wonder through imaginary spheres, we maintain that the government ought not to pause at these obligations. Law has no skin nor reason nostrils.

So we see no serious reason why the Philippines may not have representatives. By their institution many malcontents would be silenced, and instead of blaming its troubles upon the government, as now happens, the country would bear them better, for it could at least complain and with its sons among its legislators, would in a way become responsible for their actions.

We are not sure that we serve the true interests of our country by asking for representatives. We know that the lack of enlightenment, the indolence, the egotism, of our fellow countrymen, and the boldness, the cunning and the powerful methods of those who wish their obscurantism, may convert reform into a harmful instrument. But we wish to be loyal to the government and we are pointing out to it the road that appears best to us so that its effort may not come to grief, so that discontent may disappear. If after so just, as well as necessary, a measure has been introduced, the Filipino people are so stupid and weak that they are treacherous to their own interests, then let the responsibility fall upon them, let them suffer all consequences. Every country gets the fate it deserves and the government can say that it has done its duty.

These are the two fundamental reforms, which properly interpreted and applied, will dissipate all clouds, assure affection toward Spain, and make all succeeding reforms fruitful. These are the reforms sine quibus non.

It is puerile to fear that independence may come thorough them. The free press will keep the government in touch with public opinion, and the representatives, if they are, as they ought to be, the best from among the sons of the Philippines, will be their hostages. With no cause for discontent, how then attempt to stir up the masses of the people?

Likewise inadmissible is the obligation offered by some regarding the imperfect culture of the majority of the inhabitants. Aside from the fact that it is not so imperfect as is averred, there is no plausible reason why the ignorant and the defective (whether through their own or another’s fault) should be denied representation to look after them and see that they are not abused. They are the very ones who most need it. No one ceases to be a man, no one forfeits his rights to civilization merely by being more or less uncultured, and since the Filipino is regarded as a fit citizen when he is asked to pay taxes or shed his blood to defend the fatherland why must this fitness be denied him when the question arises of granting him some right? Moreover, how is he to be held responsible for his ignorance, when it is acknowledged by all, friends and enemies that his zeal for learning is so great that even before the coming of the Spaniards every one could read and write, and that we now see the humblest families make enormous sacrifices to the extent of working as servants in order to learn Spanish? How can the country be expected to become enlightened under present conditions when we see all the decrees issued by the government in favor of education meet with Pedro Rezios who prevent execution whereof because they have in their hands what they call education? If the Filipino, then, is sufficiently intelligent to pay taxes, he must also be able to choose and retain the one who looks after him and his interests, with the product whereof he serves the government of his nation. To reason otherwise is to reason stupidly.

When the laws and the acts of officials are kept under surveillance, the word justice may cease to be a colonial jest. The thing that makes the English most respected in their possessions is their strict and speedy justice so that the inhabitants repose entire confidence in the judges. Justice is the foremost virtue of the civilized races. It subdues the barbarous nations, while injustice arouses the weakest.

Offices and trusts should be awarded by competition, publishing the work and the judgment thereon, so that there may be stimulus and that discontent may not be bred. Then, if the native does not shake off his indolence he can not complain when he sees all the offices filled by Castilas.

We presume that it will not be the Spaniard who fears to enter in this contest, for thus will he be able to prove his superiority by the superiority of intelligence. Although this is not the custom in the sovereign country, it should be practiced in the colonies, for the reason that genuine prestige should be sought by means of moral qualities, because the colonizers ought to be, or at least to seem, upright, honest and intelligent, just as a man stimulates virtues when he deals with a stranger. The offices and trusts so earned will do away with arbitrary dismissal and develop employees and officials capable and cognizant of their duties. The offices held by natives, instead of endangering the Spanish domination, will merely serve to assure it, for what interest would they have in converting the sure and stable into the uncertain and problematical? The native is, moreover, very fond of peace and prefers a humble present to a brilliant future. Let the various Filipinos still holding office speak in this matter, they are the most unshaken conservatives.

We could add other minor reforms touching commerce, agriculture, security of the individual and of property, education, and so on, but these are points with which we shall deal in other articles. For the present we are satisfied with the outlines and no one can say that we ask too much.

There will be lacking critics to accuse us of Utopianism: but what is Utopia? Utopia was a country imagined by Thomas Moore, wherein existed universal suffrage, religious toleration, almost complete abolition of the death penalty and so on. When the book was published these things were looked upon as dreams, impossibilities, that is Utopianism. Yet civilization has left the country of Utopia far behind, the human will and conscience have worked greater miracles, have abolished slavery and the death penalty for adultery -- things impossible for even Utopia itself!

The French colonies have their representatives. The question has also been raised in the English parliament of giving representation to the Crown colonies, for the others already enjoy some autonomy. The press there is also free. Only Spain, which in the sixteenth century was the model nation in civilization, lags far behind. Cuba and Puerto Rico, whose inhabitants do not number a third of those of the Philippines, and who have not made such sacrifices for Spain, have numerous representatives. The Philippines in the early days had theirs, who conferred with the King and Pope on the needs of the country. They had them in Spain’s critical moments, when she groaned under the Napoleonic yoke, and they did not take advantage of the sovereign country’s misfortunes like other colonies but tightened more firmly the bonds that united them to be the nation, giving proofs of their loyalty and they continued until many years later. What crime have the Islands committed that they are deprived of their rights?

To recapitulate: the Philippines will remain Spanish if they enter upon the life of law and civilization, if the rights of their inhabitants are respected, if the other rights due them are granted, if the liberal policy of the government is carried out without trickery or meanness, without subterfuges or false interpretations.

Otherwise, if an attempt is made to see in the Islands a lode to be exploited, a resource to satisfy ambitions, thus to relieve the sovereign country of taxes, killing the goose that lays the golden eggs, and shutting its ears to all cries of reasons the, however, great may be the loyalty of the Filipinos, it will be impossible to hinder the operations of the inexorable laws of history. Colonies established to subserve the policy and the commerce of the sovereign country, all eventually become independent said Bachelet, and before Bachelet, all the Phoenician, Carthaginian, Greek, Roman, English, Portuguese, and Spanish colonies have said it.

Close indeed are the bonds that unite us to Spain. Two peoples do not live for three centuries in continual contact, sharing the same lot, shedding their blood on the same fields, holding the same beliefs, worshipping the same God, interchanging the same ideas, but that ties are formed between them stronger than those engendered by affection. Machiavelli, the great reader of the human heart said: la natura degli huomini, e cosi obligarsi pe li beneficii che essi fanno come per quelli che essi ricevono (it is human nature to be bound as much by benefits conferred as by those received). All this, and more, is true but it is pure sentimentality, and in the arena of politics stern necessity and interests prevail. Howsoever much the Filipinos owe Spain, they can not be required to forego their redemption, to have their liberal and enlightened sons wander about in exile from their native land, the rudest aspirations stifled in its atmosphere, the peaceful inhabitants living in constant alarm, with the fortune of the two peoples dependent upon the whim of one man. Spain can not claim, nor even in the name of God himself, that six millions of people should be brutalized, exploited and oppressed, denied light and the rights inherent to a human being and then heap upon them slights and insults. There is no claim of gratitude that can excuse, there is not enough power in the world to justify the offenses against the liberty of the individual, against the sanctity of the home, against the laws, against peace and honor, offenses that are committed three daily. There is no divinity that can proclaim the sacrifice of our dearest affections, the sacrifice of the family, the sacrileges and wrongs that are committed by persons who have the name of God on their lips. No one can require an impossibility of the Filipino people. The noble Spanish people, so jealous of its rights and liberties, cannot bid the Filipinos to renounce theirs. A people that prides itself on the glories of the past cannot ask another, trained by it, to accept abjection and dishonor its own name!

We, who today are struggling by the legal and peaceful means of debate so understand it, and with our gaze fixed upon our ideals, shall not cease to plead our cause, withou t going beyond the pale of the law, but if violence first silences us or we have the misfortune to fall (which is possible for we are mortal) then we do not know what course will be taken by the numerous tendencies that will rush in to occupy the places that we leave vacant.

If what we desire is not realized. . .

In contemplating such an unfortunate eventuality, we must not turn away in horror, and so instead of closing our eyes we will face what the future may bring. For this purpose, after throwing the handful of dust due to Cerberus, let us frankly descend into the abyss and sound its terrible mysteries.

PART FOUR: History does not record in its annals any lasting domination exercised by one people over another, of different races, of diverse usages and customs, of opposite and divergent ideals.

One of the two had to yield and succumb. Either the foreigner was driven out, as happened in the case of Carthaginians, the Moors and the French in Spain, or else these autochthons had to give way and perish, as was the case with the inhabitants of the New World.

One of the longest dominations was that of the Moors in Spain, which lasted seven centuries. But, even though the conquerors lived in the country conquered, even though the Peninsula was broken up into small states, which gradually emerged like little islands in the midst of the great Saracen inundation and in spite of the chivalrous spirit, the gallantry and the religious toleration of the caliphs, they were finally driven out after bloody and stubborn conflicts, which formed the Spanish nation and created the Spain of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.

The existence of a foreign body within another endowed with strength and activity is contrary to all natural and ethical laws. Science teaches us that it is either assimilated, destroys the organism, is eliminated or becomes encysted.

Encystment of a conquering people is possible, for it signifies complete isolation, absolute inertia, and debility in the conquering element. Encystment thus means the tomb of the foreign invader.

Now applying these considerations to the Philippines, we must conclude, as a deduction from all we have said, that if their population be not assimilated to the Spanish nation, if the dominators do not enter into the spirit of their inhabitants, if equitable laws and free and liberal reforms do not make each forget that they belong to different races, or if both peoples be not amalgamated to constitute one mass, socially and politically, homogeneous, that is, not harassed by opposing tendencies and antagonistic ideas and interests some day the Philippines will fatally and infallibly declare themselves independent. To this law of destiny can be opposed neither Spanish patriotism, nor the love of all Filipinos for Spain, not the doubtful future of dismemberment and intestine strife in the Islands themselves. Necessity is the most powerful divinity the world knows, and necessity is the resultant of physical forces set in operation by ethical forces.

We have said and statistics prove that it is impossible to exterminate the Filipino people. And even were it possible what interest would Spain have in the destruction of the inhabitants of a country she can not populate or cultivate, whose climate is to a certain extent disastrous to her? What good would the Philippines be without the Filipinos? Quite otherwise, under her colonial system and the transitory character of the Spanish who go to the colonies, a colony is so much the more useful and productive to her as it possesses inhabitants and wealth. Moreover, in order to destroy the six million Malays, even supposing them to be in their infancy and that they have never learned to fight and defend themselves, Spain would have to sacrifice at least a fourth of her population. This we commend to the notice of the partisans of colonial exploitation.

But nothing of this kind can happen. The menace is that when the education and liberty necessary to human existence are denied by Spain to the Filipinos, then they will seek enlightenment abroad, behind the mother country’s back or they will secure by hook or by crook some advantages in their country with the result that the opposition of purblind and paretic politicians will not only be futile but even prejudicial because it will convert motives for love and gratitude into resentment and hatred.

Hatred and resentment on one side, mistrust and anger on the other, will finally result in a violent terrible collision, especially when there exist elements interested in having disturbances, so that they may get something in the excitement, demonstrates their mighty power, foster lamentations and recriminations, or employ violent measures. It is to be expected that the government will triumph and be generally (as is the custom) severe in punishment, either to teach a stern lesson in order to vaunt its strength or even to revenge upon the vanquished the spells of excitement and terror that the danger caused it. An unavoidable concomitant of those catastrophes is the accumulation of acts of injustice committed against the innocent and peaceful inhabitants. Private reprisals, denunciation, despicable accusations, resentments, covetousness, the opportune moment for calumny, the haste and hurried procedure of the court martials, the pretext of the integrity of the fatherland and the safety of the state, which cloaks and justifies everything, even for scrupulous minds, which unfortunately are still rare and above all the panic-stricken timidity, the cowardice that battens upon the conquered -- all these things augment the severe measures and the number of the victims. The result is that a chasm of blood is then opened between the two peoples that the wounded and the afflicted, instead of becoming fewer, are increased, for to the families and friends of the guilty, who always think the punishment excessive and the judge unjust, must be added the families and friends of the innocent, who see no advantage in living and working submissively and peacefully. Note, too, that if severe measures are dangerous in a nation made up of homogeneous population, the peril is increased a hundred-fold when the government is formed a race different from the governed. In the former an injustice may still be ascribed to one man alone, to a governor actuated by personal malice, and with the death of the tyrant the victim is reconciled to the government of his nation. But in a county dominated by a foreign race, even the most just act of severity is construed as injustice and oppression, because it is ordered by a foreigner, who is unsympathetic or is an enemy of the country, and the offense hurts not only the victim but his entire race, because it is not usually regarded as personal and so the resentment naturally spreads to the whole governing race and does not die out with the offender.

Hence the great prudence and fine tact that should be exercised by colonizing countries, and the fact that government regards the colonies in general and our colonial office in particular, as training schools, contributes notably to the fulfillment of the great law that the colonies sooner or later declare themselves independent.

Such is the descent down which the peoples are precipitated. In proportion as they are bathed in blood and drenched in tears and gall, the colony, if it has any vitality, learns how to struggle and perfect itself in fighting while the mother country whose colonial life depends upon peace and the submission of the subjects, is constantly weakened and even though she makes heroic efforts, as her number is less and she has only a fictitious existence, she finally perishes. She is like the rich voluptuary accustomed to be waited upon by a crowd of servants toiling and planting for him and who on the day his slaves refuse him obedience, as he does not live by his own efforts, must die.

Reprisals, wrongs and suspicions on one part and on the other the sentiment of patriotism and liberty, which is aroused in these incessant conflicts, insurrections and uprisings, operate to generalize the movement and one of the two peoples must succumb. The struggle will be brief, for it will amount to a slavery much more cruel than death for the people and to a dishonorable loss of prestige for the dominator. One of the peoples must succumb.

Spain, from the number of her inhabitants, from the condition of her army and navy, from the distance she is situated from the Islands, from her scanty knowledge of them, and from struggling against a people whose love and goodwill she has alienated, will necessarily have to give way, if she does not wish to risk not only her other possessions and her future in Africa, but also her very independence in Europe. All this is at the cost of bloodshed, and crime, after mortal conflicts, murders, conflagrations, military executions, famine and misery.

The Spaniard is gallant and patriotic, and sacrifices everything in favorable moments, for his country’s good. He has the intrepidity of his bull. The Filipino loves his country no less and although he is quieter, more peaceful and with difficulty stirred up, when he is once aroused he does not hesitate and for him the struggle means death to one or the other combatant. He has all the meekness and all the tenacity and ferocity of his carabao. Climate affects bipeds in the same way that it does quadrupeds.

The terrible lessons and the hard teachings that these conflicts will have afforded the Filipinos will operate to improve and strengthen their ethical nature. The Spain of the fifteenth century was not the Spain of the eighth. With their bitter experience, instead of intestine conflicts of some islands against others, as is generally feared, they will extend mutual support, like shipwrecked persons when they reach an island after a fearful night of storm. Nor may it be said that we shall partake of the fate of the small American republics. They achieved their independence easily and their inhabitants are animated by a different spirit from what the Filipinos are. Besides the danger of falling again into other hands, English or German, for example, will force the Filipinos to be sensible and prudent. Absence of any great preponderance of one race over the others will free their imagination from all mad ambitions of domination, and as they tendency of countries that have been tyrannized over, when they once shake off the yoke, is to adopt the freest government, like a boy leaving school, like the beat of the pendulum or by a law of reaction, the Islands will probably declare themselves a federal republic.

If the Philippines secure their independence after heroic and stubborn conflicts, they can rest assured that neither England or Germany, nor France, and still less Holland will dare to take up what Spain has been unable to hold. Within a few years Africa will completely absorb the attention of the Europeans, and there is no sensible nation which, in order to secure a group of poor and hostile islands, will neglect the immense territory offered by the Dark Continent, untouched, undeveloped and almost undefended. England has enough colonies in the Orient and is not going to sacrifice her Indian Empire for the poor Philippine Islands -- if she had entertained such an intention she would not have restored Manila in 1763, but would have kept some point in the Philippines whence she might gradually expand. Moreover, what need has John Bull the trader to exhaust himself over the Philippines, when he is already lord of the Orient, when he has Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai? It is probable the England will look favorably upon the independence of the Philippines, for it will open their ports to her and afford greater freedom to her commerce. Furthermore, there exist in the United Kingdom tendencies and opinions to the effect that she already has too many colonies, that they are harmful, that they greatly weaken the sovereign country.

For the same reasons Germany will not care to run any risk, and because a scattering of her forces and a war in distant countries will endanger her existence on the continent. Thus we see her attitude, as much in the Pacific as in Africa, is confined to conquering easy territory that belongs to nobody. Germany avoids any foreign complications.

France has enough to do and see more of a future in Tongking and China, besides the fact that the French spirit does not shine in zeal for colonization. France loves glory, but the glory and laurels that grow on the battlefields of Europe. The echo from battlefields in the Fear East hardly satisfies her craving for renown, for it reaches her quite faintly. She has also other obligations, both internally and on the continent.

Holland is sensible and will be content to keep the Moluccas and Java. Sumatra offers her a greater future than the Philippines whose seas and coasts have a sinister omen for Dutch expeditions. Holland proceeds with great caution in Sumatra and Borneo, from fear of losing everything.

China will consider herself fortunate if she succeeds in keeping herself intact and is not dismembered or partitioned among the European powers that they are colonizing the continent of Asia.

The same is true with Japan. On the north side she has Russia, who envies and watches her, on the south England, with whom she is in accord even to her official language. She is, moreover, under such diplomatic pressure from Europe that she can not think of outside affairs until she is freed from it, which will not be an easy matter. True it is that she has an excess of population, but Korea attracts her more than the Philippines and is also easier to seize.

Perhaps the great American Republic, whose interests lie in the Pacific and who has no hand in the spoliation of Africa, may dream some day of foreign possession. This is not impossible, for the example is contagious, covetousness and ambition are among the strongest vices, and Harrison manifested something of this sort in the Samoan question. But the Panama Canal is not opened nor the territory of the States congested with inhabitants, and in case she should openly attempt it the European powers would not allow her to proceed, for they know very well that the appetite is sharpened by the first bites. North America would be quite a troublesome rival, if she should once get into the business. Furthermore, this is contrary to her traditions.

Very likely the Philippines will defend with inexpressible valor the liberty secured at the price of so much blood and sacrifice. With the new men that will spring from their soil and with the recollection of their past, they will perhaps strife to enter freely upon the wide road of progress, and all will labor together to strengthen their fatherland, both internally and externally, with the same enthusiasm, with which a youth falls again to tilling the land of his ancestors who long wasted and abandoned through the neglect of those who have withheld it from him. Then the mines will be made to give up their gold for relieving distress, iron for weapons, copper, lead, and coal. Perhaps the country will revive the maritime and mercantile life for which the islanders are fitted by their nature, ability and instincts, and once more free, like the bird that leaves its cage, like the flower that unfolds to the air, will recover the pristine virtues that are gradually dying out and will again become addicted to peace -- cheerful, happy, joyous, hospitable and daring.

These and many other things may come to pass within something like a hundred years, but the most logical prognostication, the prophecy based on the best probabilities, may err through remote and insignificant causes: An octopus that seized Mark Anthony’s ship altered the face of the world; a cross on Calvary and a just man nailed thereon changed the ethics of half the human race, and yet before Christ, how many just men wrongly perished and how many crosses were raised on that hill! The death of the just sanctified his work and made his teaching unanswerable. A sunken road at the battle of Waterloo buried all the glories of two brilliant decades, the whole napoleonic world, and freed Europe. Upon what chance accidents will the destiny of the Philippines depend?

Nevertheless, it is not well to trust to accident, for there is sometimes an imperceptible and incomprehensible logic in the workings of history. Fortunately, peoples as well as governments are subjects to it.

Therefore, we repeat and we will ever repeat, while there is time, and that is better to keep pace with the desire of a people than to give way before them; the former begets sympathy and love, the latter contempt and anger. Since it is necessary to grant six million Filipinos their rights, so that they may be in fact Spaniards, let the government grant these rights freely and spontaneously, without damaging reservations, without irritating mistrust. We shall never tire of repeating this while a ray of hope is left us, for we prefer this unpleasant task to the need of some day saying to the mother country: “Spain, we have sent our youth in serving thy interests in the interests of our country; we have looked to thee, we have expended the whole light of our intellects, all the fervor and enthusiasm of our hearts in working for the good of what was tine, to draw from them a glance of love, a liberal policy and that would assure us the peace of our native land and thy sway over loyal but unfortunate islands! Spain, thou hast remained deaf, and wrapped up in thy pride, hast pursued thy fatal course and accused us of being traitors, merely because we love our country because we tell thee the truth and hate all kinds of injustice. What dost thou wish us to tell our wretched country when it asks about the result of our efforts? Must we say to it that, since for it we have lost everything -- yo
          Seaspan Extends CEO Employment Agreement Discussions   

Seaspan Extends CEO Employment Agreement Discussions (CNW Group/Seaspan Corporation)HONG KONG, China, June 30, 2017 /PRNewswire/ - Seaspan Corporation (NYSE: SSW) announced today that it is continuing its discussion of employment agreement modifications with Gerry Wang, its Chief Executive Officer, Co-Chairman and Co-Founder, and expects to conclude discussions prior to...

          What Hong Kong can teach China   

WHEN Britain handed Hong Kong back to China 20 years ago, many politicians in the West suspended disbelief. Here was a prosperous society, deeply imbued with liberal values, being taken over by a country that, less than a decade earlier, had used tanks and machineguns to crush peaceful protests by citizens calling for democratic reform. If they were worried, the British officials who attended the handover ceremony tried not to show it. China, after all, had promised that Hong Kong’s way of life would remain unchanged for at least 50 years under a remarkable arrangement that it called “one country, two systems”. Even the last British governor of Hong Kong, Chris Patten—an outspoken critic of China’s Communist Party—called that rain-soaked day “a cause for celebration”.

This week China’s president, Xi Jinping, is to join the festivities marking the anniversary on July 1st of the start of Chinese rule—his first trip to the territory since he took power in 2012. He will also attend the...

          Se vende - Próxima camisetas y corredores 6-9 meses bebé niño - Subasta   
Granada GR, España
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          Se vende - Par De Ben Sherman pantalones de cintura 31 - Subasta   
Granada GR, España
Envío a: Reino Unido, Antigua y Barbuda, Austria, Bélgica, Bulgaria, Croacia, Chipre, República Checa, Dinamarca, Estonia, Finlandia, Francia, Alemania, Grecia, Hungría, Irlanda, Italia, Letonia, Lituania, Luxemburgo, Malta, Países Bajos, Polonia, Portugal, Rumanía, Eslovaquia, Eslovenia, España, Suecia, Australia, Estados Unidos, Rusia, Canadá, Brasil, Japón, Nueva Zelanda, China, Israel, Hong Kong, Noruega, Indonesia, Malasia, México, Singapur, Corea del Sur, Suiza, Taiwán, ...

          Se vende - Los bebés Adidas jkt edad 12-18mth - Subasta   

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Envío a: Reino Unido, Antigua y Barbuda, Austria, Bélgica, Bulgaria, Croacia, Chipre, República Checa, Dinamarca, Estonia, Finlandia, Francia, Alemania, Grecia, Hungría, Irlanda, Italia, Letonia, Lituania, Luxemburgo, Malta, Países Bajos, Polonia, Portugal, Rumanía, Eslovaquia, Eslovenia, España, Suecia, Australia, Estados Unidos, Rusia, Canadá, Brasil, Japón, Nueva Zelanda, China, Israel, Hong Kong, Noruega, Indonesia, Malasia, México, Singapur, Corea del Sur, Suiza, Taiwán, ...

          Anayara Luxury Retreat Panwa Resort   

Chiang Mai International Convention and Exhibition Center, Thailand. Anayara Resorts, owned by Pacific Media Management Group Limited and Anayara Resorts Holding Limited , a Hong Kong based adult-only ultimate luxury retreats and luxury boutique resorts brand revealing its first property Anayara Luxury Retreat Panwa Resort, a beachfront retreat estate schedule for soft opening by December […]

The post Anayara Luxury Retreat Panwa Resort appeared first on Live Trading News.

          Hong Kong Horse Racing News   

Hong Kong Horse Racing News By Andrew Hawkins Resplendent Glory has been one of the finds of the late-season period in Hong Kong, and jockey Chad Schofield believes the Tony Millard-trained chestnut is capable of making it three wins in a row when he tackles the second section of the Violet Hill Handicap (1200m) at […]

The post Hong Kong Horse Racing News appeared first on Live Trading News.

          Hong Kong: Happy Valley Selections for Wednesday Night   


The post Hong Kong: Happy Valley Selections for Wednesday Night appeared first on Live Trading News.

          Japan Attracts Strong Field for G1 Yasuda Kinen   

Japan Attracts Strong Field for G1 Yasuda Kinen One of Japan’s premier mile races, the G1 Yasuda Kinen, this year boasts five G1 winners, including two raiders from Hong Kong and 2016 winner Logotype. At the forefront are horses like Staphanos, Air Spinel and Isla Bonita, but it is an open race that could see […]

The post Japan Attracts Strong Field for G1 Yasuda Kinen appeared first on Live Trading News.

          Hong Kong Dragon Boat Carnival   

Hong Kong Dragon Boat Carnival In Hong Kong, an ancient Chinese festival has become one of the world’s greatest parties — the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Carnival. And every year, boats, beers and cheers draw hundreds of thousands of revellers and spectators to stunning Victoria Harbour. Thousands of the world’s top dragon boat athletes battle […]

The post Hong Kong Dragon Boat Carnival appeared first on Live Trading News.

          Hong Kong Real Estate Report   

Hong Kong Real Estate Report Henderson Land Development (0012) paid a record HK$23.28 billion for the government’s Murray Road five-story public car park today The Lands Department announced that the site offers about 2,880 square meters and is designated for non-industrial uses. The price paid by billionaire Lee Shau-kee’s company translates to HK$51,600 per square […]

The post Hong Kong Real Estate Report appeared first on Live Trading News.

          Hong Kong Racing News: France Galop Cup Handicap   

Hong Kong Racing News: France Galop Cup Handicap Our Selections 1. Romantic Cash 2. Jetwings 3. Super Turbo By Andrew Hawkins Trainer Richard Gibson believes Jetwings can continue the stable’s recent run of good form in the Class 2 France Galop Cup Handicap (1200m) at Happy Valley on Wednesday night (17 May). Jetwings (132lb) won […]

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          Backend-Software-Entwickler/-Software-Developer (m/w) - EBP Deutschland GmbH - Berlin   
EBP ist ein unabhängiges, international tätiges Beratungs- und Dienstleistungs- unternehmen mit Standorten in Zürich, Berlin und Boston sowie Hong Kong, São Paolo und Santiago de Chile. Im Schwerpunkt arbeiten wir in Berlin in den Berei- chen Software- und Systemtechnik mit einer überwiegend technisch wissenschaft- lichen Ausrichtung. Zur Unterstützung unserer Teams suchen wir: Backend-Software-Entwickler/-Software-Developer (m/w) mit Schwerpunkt Java-Entwicklung Ihre...
           - Media freedom in free fall 20 years after Hong Kong returned to China   
A generation after Hong Kong was handed back to China, the level of media freedom in the former British colony has never been so low. Physical violence against journalists has declined in recent years but control of the media continues to grow despite the emergence of a few independent but fragile online media outlets.
          What will happen to Italian wine if America enters into a trade war with Europe?   
The Italians never thought it would happen. They, led by the French, were marching into a huge new market, China. In that moment, they turned their gaze from America, seeing a new, emerging market filled with hundreds of millions of potential customers for their wines. Every farmer’s daughter was going to Shanghai, Beijing, Tianjin, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Dongguan, Taipei, Chengdu and Hong Kong with their Barolo, Brunello, their Prosecco and their Moscato. All along, China was developing cheap solar panels, racing to find a way to fulfill their own country’s need for cheap, clean, sustainable energy. And with that came the temptation to import those solar panels to their trading partners in Europe. But trading with China in the solar sector could cost thousands of jobs in Europe, where the solar energy industry had a foothold and was growing at a rapid pace. The EU threatened a steep tariff on solar panels imported from China. And China threatened to retaliate on wine with a tariff of up to 47%. A trade war loomed. And while this threat was greater to France, and even Spain, Italy also felt the slap from the big hand of China.

Could it happen today, between America and Europe, a similar threat? According to a conversation I had this past week with a prestigious family producer from Italy, yes it can. European leaders are suspicious of American leadership. There is a fog of volatility that has rolled in, the likes of which hasn’t been felt since the 1970’s. But the 1970’s didn’t have the global thread of communication of commerce the interconnectedness that we all have today. The interdependence that some leaders cast a blind eye to, but which nonetheless exists. So yes, the Italians are nervous.

From the look of things in 2017, so far, business is good. Things are humming right along. Italian wine still seems to have a good momentum coming off a relatively robust year, 2016. I say this with the knowledge of data that I am privy to, commercial data that even surprised me. As it continues to do.

“We are a satellite of America,” my Italian colleague said, over a globally inspired lunch of barbecued chicken and spinach salad, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc and prickly pear kombucha. It took me off guard to hear those words said. I identify as an American with Italian roots, and I love the country that my grandfathers and grandmothers immigrated to over 100 years ago. I see the limitless horizon of opportunity, as many of us immigrants and children of immigrants must see and feel when they look to America and make the often perilous trek to the land of the free. “You must understand that to us, America is a beacon of freedom for the world.” I’m sitting across a member of a venerated Italian wine family, one of the first families of Italian wine. And I’m truly astonished to hear this. And again, she says, “We are a satellite of America.”

In a sense I understand this too well. I spend all of my working time around Italian wine, around Italian restaurants and often first, second and third generation Italian immigrants. I’m steeped in the tea of Italianitá. It was then that I felt a deep commitment, once again, tugging at my heartstrings, a little voice inside, from ages past and days not yet born saying “Help them get over to your side, help them to get a place at the table.” No kidding, this is how I think and feel about it. It’s not about selling more wine; it’s not about being in the cool kid’s club. It’s about finding ways, often extremely difficult, given the myriad of laws and regulations in the alcohol beverage industry among the 50 states, to help my Italian cousins in this land of opportunity.

So to imagine that America might be going into a potential trade war with Europe - no matter how capriciously it might be constructed by the Steve Bannon’s of the world – it was truly an alarming thought for the future of Italian wine in America.

Yes, things are so much better than it was 25, 35, 50 years ago in the world of Italian wine in America. Now we have the luxury of groaning when we see one too many Erbaluce’s on hipster wine lists. But I see a new battle looming on the horizon, one which might be more than just one of have a greater selection. You think it couldn’t happen here? How many jaw dropping events must one witness before one realizes they are not on solid ground but on the deck of the Titanic?

Vigilance, my Italian colleagues. We are in a social and economic climate that is heating up faster than our contentiously debated global climate shift.

wine blog +  Italian wine blog + Italy W

          Chinese president meets Hong Kong youth at junior police activity center | WatsupAsia - Asia's Latest News & Entertainment Platform   
          Hong Kong Faces: Insights from the ‘female Warren Buffett’ | WatsupAsia - Asia's Latest News & Entertainment Platform   
          Chinese president meets Hong Kong youth at junior police activity center | WatsupAsia - Asia's Latest News & Entertainment Platform   
          Hong Kong Two Decades: Opportunities abound under Belt and Road Initiative | WatsupAsia - Asia's Latest News & Entertainment Platform   
          Xi Jinping Inspects Hong Kong Garrison as Police Warn Separatists Not to Stage Rally   
Pro-independence activists have been warned not to go ahead with a scheduled rally
          Tight security in Hong Kong as Xi leads celebrations   
Tight security contained protesters in Hong Kong tonight as Chinas President Xi Jinping led lavish celebrations to mark 20 years since the politically...
          Race to buy $ 10 billion-valued GLP narrows down to two groups   

SINGAPORE/HONG KONG  - The race to buy Global Logistic Properties is now between a Chinese consortium backed by the company's management and a rival group led by Warburg Pincus, sources said ahead of a Friday deadline to submit bids for the $10 billion-valued firm.

An acquisition offers a chance for bidders to grab control of Asia's biggest warehouse operator which counts Amazon among its clients and is benefiting from rising demand for modern logistics facilities, driven by a boom in e-commerce business.

At current valuations, a successful transaction will rank as the largest Asian buyout by private equity groups, which are increasingly targeting bigger takeovers after raising record funds, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Singapore-listed GLP was thrust into the spotlight late last year after sovereign wealth fund GIC, which owns a 37 percent stake, nudged it to start a strategic review of its business. JPMorgan was then hired by GLP as its financial adviser.

GLP's shares have since soared nearly 50 percent to the highest in more than three years.

After months of negotiations with a special committee of GLP's independent directors, the race has narrowed to between a group led by Chinese private equity firms Hopu Investment Management and Hillhouse Capital Group, with the support of GLP CEO Ming Mei, and a rival consortium headed by Warburg Pincus and its logistics partner e-Shang Redwood, the sources said.

GLP, GIC, Warburg Pincus, Hopu and Hillhouse declined to comment when contacted by Reuters. The sources declined to be identified as they were not authorised to speak about the deal.

Hopu's founder Fang Fenglei, one of China's best known dealmakers, is a GLP board member, and Hopu, partly owns GLP's China business. The Chinese consortium has also brought in co-investors such as property developer China Vanke  and Ping An Insurance Group of China  for a bid for GLP, sources have said.

"The management group and Warburg Pincus are the most serious bidders. Some other parties are keen on picking up specific assets and not the entire company," said one source.

Concerns over the transparency of the sale process and business ties of the management-backed consortium have forced some potential bidders to re-evaluate their interest and sparked complaints to GIC, sources said.

Last week, GLP said it is in discussions with shortlisted bidders and had taken measures to alleviate potential conflicts of interest following a Financial Times report that almost all the potential bidders were dropping out due to concerns an insider bid will make other submissions pointless.

Some of the potential bidders such as Blackstone Group and Asian buyout firm RRJ Capital are unlikely to submit individual bids, sources said.

Blackstone declined to comment. RRJ did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment.

GLP owns and operates a $41 billion portfolio of industrial assets spread across China, Japan, Brazil and the United States. It gets two-thirds of its revenue from China, where it has a dominant market position.

Around 20 lenders are working with three consortia in the hope of securing a role on the deal, IFR, a Thomson Reuters publication, reported last week.

          China M&A scrutiny to cast shadow on Asia deals volume   

HONG KONG  - China's outbound M&A volumes nearly halved in the first six months of 2017 following Beijing's crackdown on capital outflows, data showed, and its new scrutiny of acquisitive groups, including Anbang and HNA, is set to dampen Asian dealflow further.

Overseas deals by Chinese companies - the engine of M&A activity in Asia - fell 49 percent in the first half of 2017 from the year-ago period to $64.2 billion, dragging down regional deal volumes, according to Thomson Reuters data.

The total value of announced M&A activity in Asia Pacific fell 15 percent in the first half of this year to $458.4 billion from the year-ago period, the data showed. China was the top nation for both inbound and outbound deals in Asia Pacific for the half-year, attracting $28.5 billion worth of inbound deals.

A slowdown in Chinese deals, especially large-sized ones, could inflict further pressure on Asian revenues of Wall Street banks, who are already feeling the pain of growing competition from Chinese investment banks. M&A is among the few areas where Chinese banks haven't already gained a strong foothold.

Chinese firms spent a record $221 billion on assets overseas, ranging from movie studios to football clubs in 2016, but Beijing's move to prop up the yuan by restricting capital outflows has made it tougher for buyers to win deals abroad.

China's banking regulator tightened the screws further last week, ordering a group of lenders to assess their exposure to offshore acquisitions by several big companies that have been on an overseas buying spree, two people familiar with the matter said.

"The latest crackdown takes away people from the market who were very active on the M&A scene and creates a sense of uncertainty. You will see the impact on volumes," said an Asia financial institutions M&A banker at a large European bank.

The elevated regulatory hurdles for Chinese buyers to get their cash out of the country have caused delays and even withdrawals of a number of China outbound M&A transactions targeting U.S. and European assets.

"The sellside needs to ascertain the credibility of a buyer (from China). The second thing is to address any questions around certainty, in particular funding and approvals," said John Kim, head of M&A for Asia ex-Japan at Goldman Sachs.

Still, Chinese state-owned firms struck some of Asia's top deals in the first half. China Investment Corp wrote a 12.25 billion euros ($13.93 billion) cheque to acquire European warehouse firm Logicor from private equity group Blackstone , the region's largest during the first half.

But this year is unlikely to see any blockbuster deals such as last year's around $44 billion ChemChina-Syngenta tie-up. Bankers instead expect more activity to be driven by private equity firms which have plenty of capital after a busy fundraising period in 2016.

They are already heavily involved in some of Asia's most high-profile takeovers and take-private deals, including the potential sale of Singapore-listed warehouse operator Global Logistic Properties Ltd , which will likely be the region's biggest buyout this year.

($1 = 0.8793 euros)

          July Giveaway: Win a 2 Night Stay and Spa Treatment at Kata Rocks!   

A Phuket paradise   Looking to escape the steamy HK streets for a quick getaway? If you’ve been dreaming of an idyllic break, then listen up, as this month we’re giving away an incredible two-night stay for two at Kata Rocks, Phuket. Along with daily breakfast, the stay also includes a 60-minute Sense of Thai […]

The post July Giveaway: Win a 2 Night Stay and Spa Treatment at Kata Rocks! appeared first on Sassy Hong Kong.

          The Best Swimming Pools in Hong Kong   

Cool off this summer   What’s the best cure for this scorching Hong Kong heat? A dip in some of our favourite pools of course! We’ve done the hard work for you and compiled a list of some of our personal favourites to cool off in. From swanky hotel pools, where you can grab a […]

The post The Best Swimming Pools in Hong Kong appeared first on Sassy Hong Kong.

          10 Events For Your Diary this July   

The best concerts, shows and parties happening in Hong Kong   July is here, and with it we’re hoping for some much-needed sun after the stormy weather of June. But blue skies or not, there’s plenty to get out and get excited for this month, with comedy shows, block parties, yoga and, of course, drinks […]

The post 10 Events For Your Diary this July appeared first on Sassy Hong Kong.

          WEEKENDER: Aerial Yoga Workshop, Brick Lane Craft Beer Festival and more   

What’s on this weekend…   Beer lover? Get yourselves to Brick Lane this weekend and kick off July with some of the best craft beers and brews from around the world! Or, if yoga’s more your thing, make the most of HK’s stunning beaches and take part in a full-day Aerial Yoga workshop on the […]

The post WEEKENDER: Aerial Yoga Workshop, Brick Lane Craft Beer Festival and more appeared first on Sassy Hong Kong.

          Picada: A Taste of South American Culture in Lan Kwai Fong   

Bursting with Latin flavour, on and off the menu District: Lan Kwai Fong, Hong Kong Cuisine: Pan Latin (fusion) How Much: Dishes range from $78 – $378 Best for: A fun and lively dinner with friends Must order: Bandeja Paisa and Beef Rib Arepas It’s always exciting when a new restaurant opens in Hong Kong, […]

The post Picada: A Taste of South American Culture in Lan Kwai Fong appeared first on Sassy Hong Kong.

          Flags raised marking Hong Kong handover's 20th anniversary   
HONG KONG (AP) -- The flags of China and Hong Kong have been raised in a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of Chinese rule over Hong Kong....
          Gerald McGhie - What do diplomats do?   
Dunedin-born Gerald McGhie served for 40 years as a diplomat for New Zealand, including two postings in Moscow - during Brezhnev and the Cold War years, and later during the fall of Gorbachev, the rise of Yeltsin and collapse of the Soviet Union. He has also been posted to Western Samoa, New York, Papua New Guinea, South Korea, Hong Kong, Zimbabwe, and Tonga over his long and eventful career. McGhie has just produced an insightful account of 40 years of service as a NZ diplomat, called Balancing Acts: Reflections of a New Zealand Diplomat, in which, he says, he attempted to answer the question "what do diplomats do?" Retired in 2003, McGhie speaks and writes frequently on his experiences as well as on today's geopolitical environment.
          For sale - air jordan 7 retro olympic Youth - Auction   
Retro 4723, Australia
Posting to: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Australia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, Japan, China, Sweden, Korea, South, Indonesia, Taiwan, Thailand, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Russian Federation, Israel, New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait ...

          For sale - Canon ae-1 Official Camera 1984 Olympic Games With... - Auction   

Melbourne VIC, Australia
Posting to: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Australia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, Japan, Sweden, Korea, South, Indonesia, Taiwan, Thailand, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Russian Federation, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait ...

          Facebook ve Google, Su Altından Çin’e Kablo Çekiyor!   

Facebook ve Google, Pasifik Okyanusu’nun altından internet kablosu ile Çin’e ulaşacak. Los Angeles’dan Hong Kong’a kadar 12,874 kilometrelik ağ kuruluyor...

Facebook ve Google, Su Altından Çin’e Kablo Çekiyor! yazısı ilk önce Teknoloji, Oyun, Mobil Haberleri ve İncelemeleri - Teknoloji Turu üzerinde ortaya çıktı.

          Friday 30 June   
We have the latest as Iraq declares the end of Islamic State’s self-declared caliphate and ask if Hong Kong’s younger generation will ever accept Chinese rule. Plus: we speak to Monocle’s editor in chief, Tyler Brûlé, at our conference in Berlin and look at what Hillary Clinton’s books reveal about her.
          PureVPN Review – 2017 Update   

PureVPN has established in 2006, headquartered in Hong Kong and focused on providing feature enriched VPN services at amazingly low price range. What gives them a cutting-edge over leading VPN service provider in the industry

The post PureVPN Review – 2017 Update appeared first on VPN Analysis.

          What Happened When I Didn't Hold My Son to the Same Standards as My Daughters   

A few weeks ago I was sitting at my desk when I heard a commotion coming from the kitchen where my three kids were finishing lunch. Now that they're 16, 15, and 11, I no longer have the kneejerk reaction I once did to come running, fearful that someone was either hurt or needed immediate assistance. From my desk in the next room, I made the call to hit the mute button in my head, and I ignored them. When I did finally make my way into the kitchen to refill my coffee cup, my daughters, who were by this time alone, pounced on me.

"Did you hear what he called you?!" the girls yelled in unison, each of them talking over the other, trying to get a word in edgewise.

The "he" that they were referring to was their younger brother. The elder of my two daughters went on to explain that, after my son had eaten lunch, he got up from the table and left his plate behind. Both girls threw a fit, ordering him at once to clean off his plate and put it in the sink.

Feeling the heat from his sisters, my son, wisely, did what they told him but not before justifying his "malfeasance" by explaining that he "thought the cleaning fairy would do it."

My daughters stared at me, waiting for me to "get" it. But I didn't.

"Who's the cleaning fairy?" I naively asked.

"You!" they both began yelling again. "You're the cleaning fairy! He called you the cleaning fairy!!"

I turned to my son, who stood in the dining room within earshot, laughing at the commotion he was causing.

"Did you call me the cleaning fairy?" I asked in disbelief.

"I was just kidding, Mom!" he giggled hysterically.

I believed him. But the irony wasn't lost on me.

"Who's the cleaning fairy?" I naively asked.

There has been a long-standing joke in our family where my kids say to one another that he or she is my favorite. "Mom loves me more!" or "I'm her favorite!" are statements frequently heard around our house, most often when they see me hugging or cuddling with one of their siblings and suddenly feel left out.

Of course, I'll tell you like any other mother would, that I love each of my children equally. And I do. Even so, my daughters often complain, and not so tongue-in-cheek, that I give my son preferential treatment. That when it comes to cleaning up after himself and assuming the same chores I assigned to them when they were just about their brother's age or even younger, I give him a pass.

Hearing that my son called me the cleaning fairy, however, forced me to face the possibility that my girls have a point. What troubled me more was the reason for why I was behaving this way.

Nearly five years ago I separated from my husband after more than 16 years of marriage. To complicate matters further, not only was I divorcing, I was about to assume full physical custody of my children as my husband made the unilateral decision to reside permanently in Hong Kong 8,000 miles away. I did not, and do not, have childcare. I became a single mom.

For a long time, I tried to do it all. All of the cleaning, all of the tidying up, all of the errands, all of the cooking, all of the laundry, and all of the paperwork. What I quickly realized was that I couldn't do it all, especially if I was going back to work, which I would need to do shortly. With the mounting pressure beginning to wear me down, I knew something had to give. It was time to get creative.

That's when I began to delegate. The first task I assigned the girls was to make their beds in the morning. This required me giving my daughters each a detailed tutorial on how I like their beds to look and, more than that, my commitment, as the Disney song tells us, to "Let it go" if the result is not perfect. I won't lie; passing off this daily chore was difficult at first, but ultimately changed my life. My mornings suddenly became less rushed and less stressful as a result.

Next, I gave up plating their dinner for them. Instead, I began serving meals "family style" from my kitchen island where the girls could help themselves. I also required that they set the table, clear their plates, and turn down their beds. Yes, in a former life, I even offered turndown service, without the mint, though I did consider putting one on their pillow once just for laughs.

For the grand finale and biggest time saver ever, I required that the girls manage their laundry from start to finish, including washing it, folding it, and putting it away.

But somehow as my son came of age, I failed to give him his assignments as I did my girls.

But somehow as my son came of age, I failed to give him his assignments as I did my girls. Instead, I consistently warned him that the next time he would be held accountable, which ultimately resulted in the cleaning fairy comment a few weeks ago, and my wake-up call. Ever since, I have been correcting the situation, gradually, so he doesn't interpret his increasing responsibility as a punishment. It's not.

Once upon a time, when I was a child, I watched my mother cater to my father, never once making demands that he help out around the house, wash the dishes after she had cooked, or take out the garbage. When I married my husband, I carried on the family tradition and assumed full responsibility for all of those chores that were deemed "less than" because I didn't work outside the home and he did. With my son busy participating in a different team sport each season and having more homework as a result of his recent entrance into middle school, I recognize that I was, without my even knowing, teaching him and my two daughters the same lesson that was taught to me years earlier.

On the day my son called me the cleaning fairy, I acknowledged that I had screwed up. Big time. By not setting for my son the same expectations I had set for my two daughters, I not only was telling him that he is superior to his sisters, his female "colleagues" in our family if you will, I was also telling my daughters that they are inferior to him. Thankfully, they had the right idea to complain to "management," and I had the sense to listen, giving them the empowerment they asked for and, more importantly, deserved. But I know all too well that had I not, over time their forcefulness would wane, and the cycle would perpetuate as it once did for me.

Now if my son leaves his plate on the table, I tell him he must clean up after himself. I supervise while he prepares his lunch for school. And I have begun broaching with him the subject of making his bed and doing his laundry, first by requiring that he bring his dirty clothes downstairs and then teaching him how to sort them. All in all, my son is doing well, feeling more capable each day. I am, too. As for that cleaning fairy? She didn't fare as well and was never heard from again.

          China flexes military muscle during Xi visit to Hong Kong   
Mr Xi rode in an open-top military vehicle past rows of soldiers lined up on an airstrip on his visit to the People’s Liberation Army garrison.
          For sale - early hardy brothers 4 piece split cane fishing rod... - Auction   
Cane 6710, Australia
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          Hong Kong's Last British Governor Criticizes Beijing 20 Years After Handover   
On the anniversary of Hong Kong's return to China, Chris Patten has harsh words for Beijing's heavy-handed approach to the governance of the territory.
          How Hong Kong's Banks Turned Chinese   
As China celebrates the 20th anniversary of Great Britain's handover of Hong Kong to Chinese control, it can celebrate another type of takeover: the city's financial sector.
          Flags raised marking Hong Kong handover's 20th anniversary   
The flags of China and Hong Kong have been raised in a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of Chinese rule over Hong Kong. Chinese President Xi Jinping and the territory's … Click to Continue »
          China’s Xi Jinping greets PLA’s Hong Kong infantry in uncover of force   
Chat with us in Facebook Messenger. Find out what’s function in a universe as it unfolds. Article source: http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/29/asia/china-xi-jinping-protesters/index.html
          Trump strikes at China with arms sales to Taiwan   
Crazy hot this weekend on the coast, but good riding.

The Trump Administration State Department released a large arms deal for Taiwan, something which has been long predicted but had been held up. According to Defense News, the deal was worth $1.3 on the surface, but will need Congressional approval and may end up below that figure. Lawmakers have 30 days to object, according to AP....
The State Department has approved arms sales to Taiwan worth a total of $1.4 billion, the first such deal with the self-governing island since President Donald Trump took office, officials said Thursday.

The sale will anger China, which regards Taiwan as part of its territory. It comes at a delicate time for relations between Washington and Beijing over efforts to rein in nuclear-armed North Korea.
Note that the routine formula is followed: we learn that China will be angry, but we do not learn that the people of Taiwan -- our ally! -- will gain protection. Thus, the framing is entirely negative. Sad. Further down, we are told the relationship has deteriorated but not that Beijing was the cause. Why are there alt-facts? Because the media refuses to accurately describe the world.

I've placed the Nelson Report comments on the arms sale at the bottom of this post, but one quote from an anonymous and well placed Nelson Report reader said it all:
"Chris, word on the street is that WH has called this "F- China Month".
A longtime and knowledgeable observer said that Washington was rapidly accepting that it would need to stop delaying arms sales so that they can be rolled out in packages. Rather, they would have to be sent to Congress as soon as the Pentagon approves them. This would increase the deterrent effect. US-Taiwan Business Council head Rupert Hammond-Chambers added
“The Council supports the return to a normal and regular process for assessing all Taiwan arms sales requests and sales. Packaging several years’ worth of items drives up the overall dollar value of each tranche of notifications. Each Taiwan arms sale also becomes a rare and compelling event, drawing significantly more attention than it might otherwise garner. This creates a more substantial opportunity for Chinese protests and posturing in response to each sale, protests that have had a deterrent effect on U.S. willingness to release needed but advanced systems to Taiwan - such as new-build fighters and submarines. It would be in the U.S. interest to provide less of an impetus for Chinese protests in response to Taiwan arms sales, and moving away from packaging would be a substantial step in the right direction.”
Recall that this package was delayed by the Obama Administration -- an actual sellout of Taiwan's interests to please China.

The US-Taiwan Business Council says the deal is for...
The published FMS Congressional Notifications (transmittal numbers 16-67, 16-68, 16-69, 16-70, 16-73, 16-74, and 16-75) were for SM-2 Block IIIA All-Up Rounds, associated equipment and technical support (US$125 million); MK 54 Lightweight Torpedo Conversion Kits, spare parts and other support and assistance (US$175 million); MK 48 Mod 6AT Heavyweight Torpedoes, other support, spare parts, training, and assistance (US$250 million); Hardware, software, and other upgrades to the AN/SLQ-32(V)3 Electronic Warfare Systems supporting Taiwan’s KEELUNG Class destroyers (US$80 million); AGM-154C JSOW Air-to-Ground Missiles, spare/repair parts and other support and assistance (US$185.5 million); AGM-88B HARMs and Training HARMs, spare/repair parts, testing, and other support and assistance (US$147.5 million); SRP Operations and Maintenance follow-on sustainment (US$400 million).[i]
Note that these are largely upgrades and additions to current systems. Nothing really major here. Details are here. ADDED: Note comment below about the package actually having some new/interesting things...

Meanwhile this week a Senate Committee backs a bill calling for port calls in Taiwan by US naval ships (FocusTw):
The Armed Services Committee of the U.S. Senate on Wednesday approved a provision that will allow U.S. naval vessels to make regular stops at Taiwanese ports.

The provision was adopted by a vote 21-6 as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2018, which will now move on to the full Senate for consideration.

It stipulates re-establishing "regular ports of call by the U.S. Navy at Kaohsiung or any other suitable ports in Taiwan" and permitting "U.S. Pacific Command to receive ports of call by Taiwan," according to a summary of the bill.
It also calls for the US to provide technical support for weapons development in Taiwan, for indigenous undersea warfare vehicles (subs!!) and mines. China had a fainting spell and called for smelling salts over this. UPDATE: Apparently ROCN visits to PACOM ports such as Guam, Hawaii, and Yokusaka are also included in this, a Navy friend tells me.

This is good news all around. It illustrates the old observation that whenever the US moves farther from China it moves closer to Taiwan. By the same token, it shows that Taiwan will always be at the mercy of the US relationship with China. But I don't expect that relationship to improve much... especially since the US sanctioned Chinese banks for dealing with N Korea. A clear signal, that....
Daily Links:
Below READ MORE is the Nelson Report:

SUMMARY: the Administration delivered a "one-two punch" today for anyone who thinks that Xi Jinping somehow snowed Trump into going easy on Beijing because of alleged help on N. Korea, and being "transactional" on the vital question of helping Taiwan keep some semblance of an effective defense capability to deter PLA adventurism in a crisis:
First, while Xi is still in Hong Kong (!) State announced a $1.4 billion arms sale package; then Treasury's OFAC announced it was finally implementing some "secondary sanctions" against Chinese banks and businesses still underwriting the Kim Regime in N. Korea despite Beijing's claims to oppose Kim's nukes, missiles and threats to one and all.
Both come just before a Xi-Trump bilateral at the Hamburg G-20, and that coincides with the end of what a frankly sarcastic player calls "the Magic 100 Day Trade Review", virtually guaranteeing more will come as various "enforcement" decisions come due. Steel, anyone?
A senior US-China hand preferring ANON status:
"You have to read the OFAC decision as a 'vote of no confidence' by Trump in terms of Xi's willingness or ability to somehow 'fix' the N. Korea problem.  Trump now apparently realizes that the Chinese will always disappoint him. In fact, that they are built to do that!"
National Security Advisor McMaster was politer yesterday at the Center for a New American Security, saying China represents a vital lever to pressure North Korea to step back from nuclear weapons.     
"I think one the key elements of the strategy is that decision, how much China is able, really willing, able to help," McMaster said. "China does have a great deal of control over that situation, largely through coercive power related to its economic relations...The North Korean problem is not a problem between the United States and North Korea. It's a problem between North Korea, China and the world. And China recognizes that this is a big problem for them..."
God help us, Treasury is Tweeting, also:
Treasury targets Chinese bank serving as gateway for illicit N Korean financial activity, and issues sanctions: treasury.gov/press-center/p...
Looking at the big picture, Loyal Reader Frank Jannuzi, Mansfield Foundation:
"These are modest steps, probably long overdue from a technical standpoint.  That said, these moves will not significantly curtail China-DPRK trade and investment or encourage Beijing to be more cooperative at the UN.  To the contrary, Trump's mercurial nature will likely undercut Chinese support for U.S. pressure tactics and exacerbate growing tensions in U.S.-China relations.  Gonna be a long hot summer..."
Oh yeah!! Here's an ANON quote on which the protection need is self-evident, both on content and point of origin:
"Chris, word on the street is that WH has called this "F- China Month".
Sigh, so much for good taste. Scroll down for the gory details of Trump's latest "mercurial". Here's the arms sale story from the official "background brief", attributable to a "U.S. Government official":
This afternoon, the Department of State approved and delivered Congressional notifications for several sales to Taiwan cumulatively valued at approximately $1.4 billion. The notifications from DSCA are attached.
Systems include:
·        Early Warning Radar Surveillance Technical Support ($400 million)
·        AGM-154C Joint Stand-off Weapon (JSOW) ($185.5 million)
·        AGM-88 High-Speed Anti-Radiation (HARM) Missiles ($147.5 million)
·        MK 48 6AT Heavy Weight Torpedoes ($250 million)
·        MK 46 to MK-54 Torpedo Upgrade ($175 million)
·        SM-2 Missile Components ($125 million)
·        AN/SLQ-32A Electronic Warfare (EW) Shipboard Suite Upgrade ($80 million) 
The Administration has formally notified Congress of seven proposed defense sales for Taiwan cumulatively valued at $1.3 billion.
Under long-standing U.S. policy, U.S. arms sales to Taiwan are guided by the Taiwan Relations Act and based on an assessment of Taiwan's defense needs. There is no change to our longstanding "one China" policy based on the Three Joint Communiques and the Taiwan Relations Act. Today's notifications are consistent with the Taiwan Relations Act, and our support for Taiwan's ability to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability.
These sales represent upgrades including converting current defensive legacy systems from analog to digital.
Across decades and Presidential Administrations, the United States has remained deeply committed to meeting Taiwan's defense needs. This Administration is resolved to fully implement the provisions of the Taiwan Relations Act under which the United States makes available to Taiwan defense articles and services in such quantity necessary to enable Taiwan to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability.
Taiwan's defensive capability gives it the confidence to engage with the mainland in dialogue to improve cross-Strait relations.  In this context, our arms sales to Taiwan support peace and stability -- not only in the Taiwan Strait, but also in the entire Asia Pacific region. We support further development of cross-Strait relations at a pace and scope acceptable to people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait.
Here's the AP story, which needs a couple of clarification/corrections:

US approves 1st arms sale to Taiwan under Trump

[story removed]

Your Editor: two points...first, the TRA does not "require" arms sales, but it doesrequire that the Administration consult with Congress on what is needed to help Taiwan preserve the peaceful status quo vis a vis the Mainland. 

Perhaps this misunderstanding accounts for our second concern, the claim that today's announcement does not "violate" the TRA. Huh!?  How did anyone at State get that idea? Matt is a valued colleague and experienced reporter, so we have nodoubt he quoted Nauret accurately...

Don't miss the comments below! And check out my blog and its sidebars for events, links to previous posts and picture posts, and scores of links to other Taiwan blogs and forums!

          Enfants de la rétrocession : avoir 20 ans à Hong Kong   
Samedi 1er juillet se tiendront à Hong Kong les cérémonies marquant les 20 ans de la rétrocession à la Chine de la province. Ce sera l'occasion pour les militants indépendantistes de manifester pour réclamer plus d'autonomie, d'autant plus que le président Xi Jinping doit faire le déplacement. Nos reporters ont suivi deux jeunes hongkongais, nés en 1997, l'une activiste au sein d'une organisation pro-indépendance, l'autre qui ne conçoit l'avenir de la province que dans le giron la Chine.
          China says Hong Kong handover agreement ‘no longer relevant’   
BEIJING: In the midst of celebrations marking 20 years since Britain returned Hong Kong to China, Beijing declared that the document which initiated the handover “is no longer relevant.” The remarks on Friday came a day after UK Foreign Minister Boris Johnson stressed Britain’s commitment to the historic Sino-Britain Joint Declaration, which gave Hong Kong […]
          MAIDEN MARC ASSOC LTD: Researcher and Associate for Number One Ranked Boutique Executive Search Firm   
£25,000 to £35,000 in basic salary and from £40,000 to £50,000+ in potential take-home year one: MAIDEN MARC ASSOC LTD: MMA are currently working exclusively with the leading international Financial Services search firm who have recently been ranked the number one bo... London, New York and Hong Kong
          Xi Jinping appelle les jeunes hongkongais à servir Hong Kong et le pays   
A la veille du 20e anniversaire de la rétrocession de Hong Kong à la mère patrie, le président chinois Xi Jinping a appelé vendredi les jeunes de Hong Kong à choisir la bonne voie et à servir Hong Kong et le pays.
          La Chine réfute les remarques américaines et britanniques sur les affaires de Hong Kong   
En tant que document historique, la Déclaration commune sino-britannique n'a pas de force contraignante pour l'administration du gouvernement central sur la Région administrative spéciale (RAS) de Hong Kong, a annoncé vendredi Lu Kang, porte-parole du ministère chinois des Affaires étrangères.
          Xi Jinping rencontre l'ancien chef de l'exécutif de la RAS de Hong Kong Tung Chee-hwa   
Le président chinois Xi Jinping, a rencontré vendredi Tung Chee-hwa, le premier chef de l'exécutif de la Région administrative spéciale (RAS) de Hong Kong, le qualifiant de "pionnier" dans la pratique de la politique "un pays deux systèmes" à Hong Kong.
          Xi Jinping rencontre le chef de l'exécutif de la RAS de Macao   
Le président chinois Xi Jinping a rencontré vendredi Chui Sai On, chef de l'exécutif de la Région administrative spéciale (RAS) de Macao, qui est venu pour assister aux célébrations marquant le 20e anniversaire de la rétrocession de Hong Kong à la Chine.
          Xi Jinping rencontre des responsables du gouvernement central à Hong Kong   
Le président chinois Xi Jinping a rencontré vendredi un groupe de responsables du gouvernement central à Hong Kong et des cadres supérieurs des branches d'entreprises et d'institutions de la partie continentale de la Chine.
          Le président chinois Xi Jinping rencontre des dignitaires de Hong Kong   
Le président chinois Xi Jinping a rencontré vendredi un groupe de personnalités de tous les milieux de Hong Kong, les appelant à prendre l'initiative dans la promotion des échanges et de la coopération entre Hong Kong et la partie continentale.
          Hong Kong marks 20 years since handover to China   
Thousands of police are deployed as the territory marks the anniversary of its handover from the UK.
          Les États-Unis inquiets pour le respect des libertés à Hong Kong   
Les États-Unis se sont dits jeudi inquiets pour le respect de la démocratie à Hong Kong, vingt ans après la rétrocession de la ville à la Chine sous un statut particulier censé lui permettre de jouir d'une plus grande liberté que sur le continent. (AFP)

          Live Bhagavatam Lecture from Los Angeles, USA   
Live Bhagavatam Lecture from Los Angeles, USA ============================================= Friday 30 June Go to: www.lalive.us Welcome to all new members of the Ultimate Self Realization Course. We now have 25,000+ subscribers! =========================================================== 07:30am to 08:30am in Los Angeles (Pacific Time) 09:30am to 10:30am in USA (Central Time) 10:30am to 11:30am in NYC, Toronto, Santiago (Eastern Time) 11:30am to 12:30pm in Mendoza, Argentin 03:30pm to 04:30pm in London 04:30pm to 05:30pm in Copenhagen, S. Africe 05:30pm to 06:30pm in Latvia, Bucharest 06:30pm to 07:30pm in Mauritius 08:00pm to 09:00pm in India 10:30pm to 11:30pm in Malaysia, Hong Kong 12:30am to 01:30am Sydney, Melbourne Australia on 1 July 02:30am to 03:30am in New Zealand on 1 July Testimonials: Thank you very much by giving wonderful inspirational Srimad Bhagavatam classes! Now it is very simple to be involved into listening Krishna katha live even from other side of the world.--Damodar das It is helping me directly associate with Sri Guru daily by allowing me to hear Srimad Bhagavatam and clear my doubts instantly by asking questions on live conference session.--Syamapriya devi dasi The online Bhagavatam class is so enlivening. Your Divine Grace answered all my eight questions.Its so good to hear Your Divine Graces and Srimati Gurumatas voice live.--Bhakta Shashank
          Hong Kong gears up for 20th anniversary of handover   
Pro-democracy campaigners prepare to protest as Chinese President Xi Jinping vists Hong Kong for the 20th anniversary of the city's return to Chinese rule.
          China flexes military muscle during Xi visit to Hong Kong   
Mr Xi rode in an open-top military vehicle past rows of soldiers lined up on an airstrip on his visit to the People’s Liberation Army garrison.
          Reliance Jio launches 25000 kms long 100Gbps submarine cable system   

India’s telecom giant Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd said on Thursday that it has launched longest 100Gbps technology based submarine system, Asia-Africa-Europe (AAE-1) submarine cable system, which will stretch over 25,000 km with 21 cable landings from Marseille, France to Hong Kong and across Asia and Europe. This project is undertaken with the combined efforts of […]

The post Reliance Jio launches 25000 kms long 100Gbps submarine cable system appeared first on Latest IT News.

           Yu Chun Yu compares new photos of Hong Kong with old ones    
Mr Yu Chun Yu walked the streets of Old Town Central armed with a collection of vintage photos and shot contemporary scenes in exactly the same locations.
          Chinese netflix   
Continuing along (my blog) and since i theme these may I suggest dot to dot imdb: /tt3743974 is an inoffensive film which i liked from Hong Kong 5/5 bananas The stolen years (Bei tou zou de na wu nian) imdb: tt3175936 is from 2013 and rather american yuppie inspired however it is a film that … Continue reading
          TCIL's Subaru production plan on track   
Hong Kong-listed Tan Chong International Ltd (TCIL) remains committed to producing Subaru vehicles in Thailand in early 2019, starting with the Subaru Forester.
          12 Retech Corporation Completes Acquisition of 12 Hong Kong Limited Interactive Smart Retail Shopping Technology   

HONG KONG, CHINA--(Marketwired - Jun 30, 2017) - 12 Retech Corporation fka Devago, Inc. ("12 Retech" or the "Company") (OTC PINK: DVGGD) is pleased to announce that the Company has completed the acquisition of 12 Hong Kong Limited, a Hong Kong Special Administrative Region corporation. 12 Hong Kong Limited ("12RT") is the developer of the patented "12" next-gen retail shopping technology which seamlessly combines cutting-edge digital tech and social networking with real life for a fun and unique shopping experience.

          OMNIVORE: China tightens its grip   
Is it too late to save Hong Kong from Beijing’s authoritarian grasp?
          My hong kong girlfriend   
Watch My hong kong girlfriend at free fuck and porn video site
          Xi debutta a Hong Kong in versione militare: «Il meglio deve ancora venire»   
HONG KONG - «Il meglio deve ancora venire, per Hong Kong». Questa è la frase eloquente attribuita al presidente Xi Jinping in visita all’ex colonia britannica nel ventennale...
          Travelling broadens the mind and opens the bowels   
I had imagined this particular story to beabout the science of the amazingly developed city of Hong Kong. I thought itwould make a ... tags: educationEducation_K-12hong konghong_kongk-12marc westmarc_westTravelling broadens the mind and opens the bowels
Mr Science Show
          For sale - Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 2: Sword of... - $9   

San Francisco 94145, CA, United States
This is dvd title: Crouching Tiger,Hidden Dragon 2: Sword of Destiny Region 1, ntsc (usa) Audio: Cantonese/Mandarin/English . Subtitles: Not Perfect English or broken grammar . But this movie has English Audio.Picture : Very Clear Starring: Donny Yen, Michelle Yeoh Directed by : Yen Wu pingmade in : Hong Kong. Comment: - This is popular as dvd 9. Please consider even ...

          Looking For A Cruise With A Difference?   
Cruise ship companies are continuing to add ships to their fleets and they are also becoming far more imaginative with the cruise itineraries that they are providing. The Caribbean and Mediterranean are still the most popular cruising destinations, but there is now a large range of exiting cruises that are available around the World.

This article attempts to give you some inspiration on where you should think about taking your next cruise holiday.

South America can offer a huge range of diverse cruises ranging from a trip up the Amazon to the throbbing cities of Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires as well as offering natural wonders like the Galapagos Islands, Chilean Fjords and the Andes mountains.

Many of these cruises start from US ports and otherssail from the major South American cities. The majority of cruises to the Antarctica start from Ushuaia in southern Argentina. Several cruise companies including Voyages of Discovery and Hurtigruten offer expedition-style Antarctica cruises.

Dubai, as well as being a luxury holiday destination is starting to become an established cruise port. Costa Cruises is sailing seven cruise itineraries in 2009 calling at Abu Dhabi, Oman and Bahrain.

Dubai and other gulf ports often feature on world or repositioning cruises which means you can pick up a cruise bargain by choosing one of these cruises.

North Africa is well served by many cruise ships that also include the Mediterranean but what about the rest of Africa? Some world cruises sail down the west coast of Africa to Cape Town, as an alternative to cruising through the Suez Canal in Egypt.

Cruising the west coast means that you can visit countries such as Senegal, Gambia and Namibia as well as the Cape Verde Islands and St Helena. In southern and eastern Africa some cruise lines offer departures from Cape Town and also the Kenyan holiday resort of Mombasa.

Silversea Cruises offers several trips from these ports which call at destinations such as Zanzibar, Madagascar and Assumption Island. Hebridean International Cruises and Voyages of Discovery are also featuring cruises around this region.

Cruises to Alaska are still as popular as ever. These cruisese start from Seattle or Vancouver and make their way up the Inside Passage taking in some of the worlds most spectacular scenery. NCL, Princess and Royal Caribbean are just some of the cruise lines offering Alaskan cruises, which can also be combined with a land tour.

The Baltic is the second most popular cruise region in the European summer season. A Baltic cruise would visit the stunning cities of St Peterburg, Stockholm and Tallinn, whilst of course Norway offers the incredible Fjords, the midnight sun and The Northern Lights. Hurtigruten is famed for its coastal voyages around Norway.

The Far East and in particular China has seen a big growth in cruise customers. Many cruises start from Hong Kong and cruise north to China and Japan. Other cruises head south where you will cruise to Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore.

Australia and New Zealand feature on most world cruises by cruise companies such as P&O, Holland America, Princess and Royal Caribbean.

So, what are you waiting for? Cruising has never been more popular and with the ever increasing choice of both exotic and exploration cruises available there has never been a better time to book a cruise.

David Brice was writing on behalf of the cruise experts White Rose Cruise

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          Why a Melbourne uni graduate will be protesting on Hong Kong's streets today   
Avery Ng was a management consultant but now he is fighting for democracy in Hong Kong.
          Contributing Op-Ed Writer: Chinese Ways of Empire, Then and Now   
Hong Kong, beware: Ancient history provides ominous examples of China subjugating rebellious peoples on its periphery.
          Op-Ed Contributor: Chris Patten: Did Beijing Betray Hong Kong?   
Hong Kong is a small place, but its fate will loom large over the 21st century.
          Hong Kong's model 'will not change'   
The president of China says the 'one country, two systems' model of governance for Hong Kong will not change. Xi Jinping spoke at a banquet on the eve of the 20th anniversary of the handover of the former British colony to China. "Persisting in thoroughly implementing the 'one country, two systems' policy, Hong Kong being governed by Hong Kongers, concentrating all our attention on seeking development with one heart and one mind and struggling together, these factors will definitely result in an even better tomorrow for Hong Kong." Xi's visit comes amid heightened tension between China and Hong Kong. Many in the former colony are concerned at what they see as increased interference by Beijing in local affairs, despite the promise of wide-ranging autonomy under the 'two systems' agreement. His comments come as China's Foreign Ministry said the joint declaration with the UK over Hong Kong was a historical document that no longer had any practical significance.


香港制造 (1997)
导演: 陈果
编剧: 陈果
主演: 李璨琛 / 严栩慈 / 李栋全 / 谭嘉荃 / 林洁芳 / 陈达义
类型: 剧情 / 喜剧 / 爱情 / 犯罪
制片国家/地区: 香港

上映日期: 1997-10-09
片长: 108 分钟
又名: Made in Hong Kong
IMDb链接: tt0123328


香港制造的剧情简介  ・  ・  ・  ・  ・  ・



          NEWS: Hong Kong Is in Trouble   
Caught between rival modes of rule — Beijing’s dictates and the demands of local residents — the authorities have allowed problems to fester, including an affordable housing crisis, a troubled education system and a delayed high-speed rail line. Continue reading the main story Advertisement Continue reading the main story Many say the fight over Hong Kong’s political future...
          Flags raised marking Hong Kong handover's 20th anniversary   
HONG KONG (AP) -- The flags of China and Hong Kong were raised Saturday in a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of Chinese rule over Hong Kong while just streets away pro-democracy activists clashed with police and counter protesters....
          Johns Hopkins astrophysicist Charles L. Bennett receives 2017 Isaac Newton Medal and Prize   

Johns Hopkins University astrophysicist Charles L. Bennett is the recipient of the 2017 Isaac Newton Medal and Prize, announced today by the Institute of Physics in London in recognition of research that has had a "transformative effect in cosmology."

Charles L. Bennett

Image caption: Charles L. Bennett

Image credit: Will Kirk / Homewood Photography

The IOP specifically cited Bennett's work as leader of NASA's Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe space mission. WMAP, which began in 1996 and ended in 2013, produced results that provided important support for what has come to be known as the Standard Model of Cosmology.

"I am so very honored to receive the Isaac Newton Medal and Prize," said Bennett, a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor, Alumni Centennial Professor of Physics and Astronomy, and Gilman Scholar in JHU's Krieger School of Arts and Sciences.

"This honor is named for a personal hero of mine, for Newton was driven to understand how nature works," said Bennett, who joined the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins in 2005.

Bennett also directs the Space@Hopkins initiative, an effort to connect an array of Johns Hopkins University divisions, departments, and collaborative institutions in their pursuit of civilian space research.

The Isaac Newton Medal and Prize, to be presented at a ceremony in London in November, is the latest of seven major scientific awards that Bennett has received since 2005 in connection with his work as WMAP's principal investigator. Among them:

WMAP took precise measurements of temperature fluctuations in the cosmic microwave background, the faint relic afterglow left behind by the initial burst of energy that created the universe 13.8 billion years ago. Those measurements, the IOP wrote, helped scientists produce "incontrovertible evidence" of dark energy and dark matter, find the first evidence of the cosmic neutrino background, and narrow the possible physics of the first fraction of a second of the universe.

          How much do parents spend on education?   
A new HSBC report tracking education costs in 15 countries and territories found parents in Hong Kong spend the most on their children's education.
          Bí ẩn chiếc cặp đen luôn theo sát ông Tập Cận Bình khi thăm Hong Kong   

          CY wife’s bizarre dresses and Peng Liyuan’s Cantonese   
All eyes are on Xi Jinping’s ongoing Hong Kong visit. Observers are eager to interpret or fathom, even from some minuscule aspects like the president’s body language, what the supreme party chieftain thinks about Hong Kong and how that bodes for the territory’s future. It’s believed that Xi will unveil more of his policies on […]
          A lakeside walk through Hok Tau and beyond   
If you fancy exploring a natural world that not too many folk in Hong Kong know about, then grab a chance for a trip to Hok Tau Reservoir. Located in the innermost depths of Pat Sin Leng Country Park, it is a region that is as much unknown as it is remote. However, the area […]
          One country, two cinemas   
At one time, Hong Kong and mainland China had two distinct cinemas. During the 1980s and 1990s, Hong Kong’s native cinema was rightly celebrated as a freewheeling, vibrant industry that redefined some of the norms of global popular cinema. Today, Hong Kong still produces some very commendable films, but many people lament that the “Golden […]
          Lau Sum Kee: A bamboo pole for three generations of noodle chefs   
Only a few restaurants in Hong Kong can be called “classic” nowadays; Lau Sum Kee Noodle in Sham Shui Po is definitely one of them. The decades-old eatery is famous for its signature fare-bamboo pole noodles, or jook-sing min in Cantonese – made through a process in which the chef rides a bamboo pole to […]
          HK man facing drug charges in Thailand protests innocence   
A 24-year-old man from Hong Kong who was arrested with two female companions in Thailand earlier this month for alleged drug trafficking protested his innocence and said he hopes his lawyer will save him from a heavy penalty. Yau Kit-long, along with two other Hongkongers, aged 19 and 22, were arrested on June 4 at […]
          HK parents spend HK$1 mln on child’s education, study says   
Local parents are estimated to be spending around HK$1.03 million for the education of each child from primary school to university, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports, citing a recent HSBC study. The study, which covers 15 countries and regions, has found that Hong Kong parents are the biggest spenders on their children’s education, followed […]
          Xi promises to back Hong Kong’s development, praises CY Leung   
Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged the continued support of the central government for Hong Kong’s development as he spoke highly of the work of outgoing Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying. In a short speech after he stepped off the plane on Thursday with his wife, Xi said he is pleased to have set foot in Hong […]
          Canada: Getting stronger though 130 years older than Hong Kong   
As I leave Toronto on a flight back to Hong Kong, I cannot help but feel odd – bothered and bewildered, if you will.  Canada, as you know, is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year, and the air of jubilation is unmistakable. But this is something I cannot say about the people’s mood in my […]
          IVE team readies for World Solar Challenge with improved vehicle   
Students from the Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education (IVE) will compete with teams from top global institutions such as Cambridge University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology at the World Solar Challenge this year, in their third attempt at the biennial solar-powered car race. A group of 30 students and teachers from the engineering discipline […]
          Sha Tin, Kwun Tong lead in population rankings by district   
Sha Tin has the highest population among all the 18 districts in Hong Kong, followed by Kwun Tong and Yuen Long, according to official government data. The Census and Statistics Department said on Thursday, citing the 2016 Population By-census, that Sha Tin has 659,794 people living in the district, putting it at the top in […]
          President Xi unlikely to meet with pan-democrats during visit   
Before President Xi Jinping arrived in Hong Kong yesterday to mark the 20th anniversary of the handover, rumors had been rife that there could be a “historic meeting” between the pan-democrats and the paramount leader during his stay. Intriguingly, the rumors actually originated from another earlier rumor that some “intermediaries” representing Beijing had approached several […]
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          Comment on Marriage, Nationality and Divorce — 2017 by Micher   
Hi everyone! I'm helping a Filipino friend who's already in the US.She wants to use her US citizen husband's surname.but the thing is,she had her divorce here in Hong Kong and got married here too.(US citizen husband) so it's not recognized in the Philippines.Yet she's still using her Filipino ex husband's surname.Is there any way for her to possibly change her surname into her US citizen husband's surname? Thank you and answers will be much appreciated.
          Xi Jinping: China says Hong Kong handover agreement 'no longer relevant'   
In the midst of celebrations marking 20 years since Britain returned Hong Kong to China, Beijing declared that the document which initiated the handover "is no longer relevant."
          Beijing: US warns China over Hong Kong freedoms   
The United States urged China Thursday to respect civil liberties in Hong Kong, including press freedom, as the territory marked the 20th anniversary of its handover to Beijing's rule.
          Security tight in Hong Kong as China president set to swear in new leader   
HONG KONG (Reuters) - A massive security blanket surrounded Hong Kong early on Saturday as Chinese President Xi Jinping prepared to swear in the city's first female leader on the 20th anniversary of the former British colony's handover to Chinese rule.

          Xi Jinping: Massive military parade as Hong Kong activists freed   
Tanks, missile launchers and chanting troops greeted President Xi Jinping in a potent display of Chinese military might Friday as part of his landmark visit to politically divided Hong Kong.
          Boris Johnson: UK foreign minister urges democratic progress in Hong Kong   
UK Foreign Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday urged democratic progress in Hong Kong, 20 years after Britain returned the semi-autonomous city to China.
          Ni 3 chham turin China president-in Hong Kong a tlawh (head)   
China President Xi Jinping chuan nimin khan Hong Kong a thleng a, preisdent a nih hnua a tlawhna hmasa ber a ni. Hong Kong-ah hian ni thum
          China flexes military muscle during Xi visit to Hong Kong   
Mr Xi rode in an open-top military vehicle past rows of soldiers lined up on an airstrip on his visit to the People’s Liberation Army garrison.
          Sunshine Oilsands Ltd.: Grant of Share Options and Change in Composition of Board Committees   

CALGARY, ALBERTA and HONG KONG, CHINA--(Marketwired - June 29, 2017) - Sunshine Oilsands Ltd. (HKSE:2012) -

          Sunshine Oilsands Ltd.: List of Directors and Their Roles and Functions   

CALGARY, ALBERTA and HONG KONG, CHINA--(Marketwired - June 29, 2017) - The board of directors (the "Board") of Sunshine Oilsands Ltd. (HKSE:2012) comprises 11 directors as follows:

NSW-Sydney, Centrally Based CBD Location - Beautiful Offices Hong Kong Based Property Development Company Growing Within Sydney Develop And Specialise Within Your Career Hong-Kong based international Property Development Company requires an Accountant to join their team Your new company Your new company is an international organisation who operate within the Property industry. They have recently moved to Sydn
          Tight security in Hong Kong as Xi leads celebrations   
Tight security in Hong Kong as Xi leads celebrationsA huge security operation has shut down large parts of Hong Kong, with thousands of police deployed to keep away demonstrators angry at Beijing's tightening grip on the freedoms of nearly eight million people.
          China's President Xi arrives in divided Hong Kong   
China's President Xi arrives in divided Hong KongA huge security operation shut down large parts of the normally throbbing city, with thousands of police deployed to keep away demonstrators angry at Beijing's tightening grip on the freedoms of nearly eight million people.
          Senior Manager - Cybersecurity Analytics Lead   
VIC-Melbourne, About us: EYC3 is the data and advanced analytics capability within EY Asia-Pacific working in multiple sectors including financial services, government & public sector, energy, mining & metals, and consumer products. We have more than 250 specialist staff in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, Korea, The Philippines and Malaysia. EYC3 creates intelligent client organizations using data
          SAP Architect - Business Intelligence %26 Analytics   
VIC-Melbourne, About us: EYC3 is the data and advanced analytics capability within EY Asia-Pacific working in multiple sectors including financial services, government & public sector, energy, mining & metals, and consumer products. We have more than 250 specialist staff in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, Korea, The Philippines and Malaysia. EYC3 creates intelligent client organizations using data
          Ultra-Rare 5.3-Carat Fancy Blue Diamond Ring Headlines Upcoming Bonhams Auction   

An ultra-rare 5.3-carat fancy deep-blue diamond ring, which is expected to fetch upwards of $2.4 million, will be the top lot at Bonhams Fine Jewelry sale in London on April 24. Designed circa 1965 by Bulgari, the renowned Italian designer, the distinctive Trombino-style ring features a cushion-shaped blue diamond set horizontally. The ring is accented with pavé-set brilliant-cut diamonds and courses of baguette-cut diamonds.


The upcoming sale is already causing a buzz in jewelry and auction circles. Blue diamonds are extremely rare in the market and command some of the highest prices at auction worldwide. The term “fancy” refers to the intensity of color and the rating of “fancy deep-blue” is one of the rarest — and most coveted. 

The extraordinary blue hue is derived from small atoms of boron mixing with the carbon atoms in a diamond. This anomaly affects the absorption of light passing through the stone and gives it a blue appearance. 


“Blue diamonds, especially those over 5 carats, are extremely rare to see on the market and continue to be highly sought after,” said Jean Ghika, Director of Bonhams Jewelry Department for the UK and Europe. “During the 1960s and 1970s, Bulgari was well known for its imaginative settings and use of colored diamonds. This ring epitomizes that ‘golden era’ of elegant simplicity and we are honored to be handling the sale of such a unique gem.”

Despite their extreme rarity, other blue diamonds have been in the news recently. In November 2012, Sotheby’s Geneva sold a 10.48-carat fancy deep-blue briolette-shaped diamond for $10.9 million. In April of 2012, Sotheby’s Hong Kong was the site of another high-profile blue diamond sale at which an 8.01-carat emerald-cut fancy vivid-blue diamond ring fetched $12.7 million.

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          Contentment with small things    

It's ingrained in the minds of so many Americans - that Norman Rockwell image of Grandmother placing a glowing brown turkey on a white table, surounded by smiling faces huddling as if listening to some family tale.

For many Americans, Thanksgiving is a time for renewing bonds with extended family and friends, and for bountiful tables. But what about people who can't take part in such a large festivity?

Whether it's parents whose children live far away, or singles who choose to spend the holiday with friends, or people who want to simplify this annual tradition, many are finding they can have all the meaning of Thanksgiving around a smaller table.

For Alice Shobe, a wife and mother of two young children, the beauty of the day is precisely in its simplicity. No football. No shopping. No pressure. Just good friends and food.

"I like the feeling of sitting at the table, and feeling calm, and having nice conversation with people that I'm really happy to be there with," says Ms. Shobe, deputy director of a Seattle nonprofit organization.

Shobe and her husband, Eric Svarens, usually spend Christmas with his parents in Portland, Ore. And her parents live in Michigan - too far to travel on the busiest holiday of the year. So, to their delight, that leaves Thanksgiving as the one holiday they can spend exactly as they please, and that's with their children, 11 months and four years old, and a few close friends.

For her husband, an organizational consultant, this kind of celebration is a relief from pressured family gatherings.

"We've said, 'Let's make this something that works for us,' " Mr. Svarens explains. "The only tradition so far is, Alice makes this incredible cranberry sauce. But other traditions are not fully developed yet."

Defining and observing traditions is important to Hepsie and Ron Davis's Thanksgiving celebrations. In 35 years of marriage, they have lived in several US states, Geneva, and Hong Kong, following Ron's postings as a corporate lawyer. While they were raising two daughters, they rarely lived near relatives. Now they are retired and live in Flat Rock, N.C.

Observing family rituals "was a very conscious effort because of our children," says Mrs. Davis. "We wanted to establish our own family traditions, to develop our own strong family bond. Even if it's just Ron and I, we try to maintain family traditions."

For the Davises, Thanksgiving Day starts with a leisurely breakfast. For dinner, it's the traditional turkey with the highlights: "steamed oysters, fried oysters, oyster stuffing. Always oysters," Mrs. Davis says. "This is oyster season in North Carolina," where she grew up.

"I think Thanksgiving is a state of mind," she says. "It's not the event, it's what the event symbolizes. And you can have that by yourself or with two people."

Judith Reiffel spent 20 years living and working in Berlin, long after her sons had grown up. After 20 years without Thanksgiving, and always being the guest at Christmas, Ms. Reiffel was primed for celebrations when she retired to the Jamaica Plain neighborhood of Boston.

"The first thing I did when I got back here was to have parties," she says. Most Thanksgivings have been at her apartment, with one of her sons and a couple of his friends.

But with a tight budget and no car, Reiffel has learned to pare the food down to the necessities. She starts weeks in advance buying food items - one at a time, in addition to her regular shopping. "Suddenly you have everything," she says. To keep expenses down, she cuts out certain foods such as relishes and olives, which "no one will ever miss." When her guests are too few to consume a whole bird, she buys cuts of turkey and roasts them with all the trimmings.

"You have to scale down when you get older," she explains. "Which doesn't make it worse - it's a relief."

Laurel Ross, an elementary music teacher from Eugene, Ore., says her most memorable Thanksgivings were spent with a few close friends who gathered almost every year for 10 years.

The celebrations were far from traditional. Two of her friends are vegetarians, she laughs, and the staunchest one insisted on carving the turkey.

"We didn't have any real rituals around it," Ms. Ross says. "But we looked forward to it. We always worked together, so it wasn't heaped on one person."

Janet Luhrs, author of "The Simple Living Guide" (Broadway Books, 1997), says simplifying holiday plans is easy to do without diminishing the festive atmosphere. The most important thing is to talk with the guests, and decide as a group what is most important to everyone.

"At that meeting, create an umbrella of values," she suggests. "Say, 'What is really meaningful here?' If it's to have time with your children or family, then you can question why you are running around to find the perfect decoration for your office party."

To bring intimacy to a celebration, even when it's with people you may not know well, Ms. Luhrs says, ask people to write down meaningful quotes, put them in a bowl, and take turns around the table reading them.

For those spending the day alone, Vicki Robin, co-author of "Your Money or Your Life" (Penguin, 1999), suggests writing a letter to someone who has been a blessing in your life. "That way you get to experience the richness of that person." she says.

Ms. Robin suggests that, no matter how simple the celebration, the most important thing is to list all the things you appreciate in your life. "Every time you name something that you have and appreciate, your experience of 'wealth' increases," she says. "The more we step into the space of gratitude, the harder it is to remain an unconscious consumer."

Ms. Shobe says the holiday is important for her family.

"I feel a strong desire to use Thanksgiving as a special time to teach - but also to demonstrate for my children - conscious acts of being grateful," she says. "I've adopted Thanksgiving for that purpose."

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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          For Sale: Brass Lotus Lights   
I have 3 of these Vintage Brass Lotus pendant lights for sale. I debated long and hard about selling these because I love them so much but I just don't have a place for them in my home.
MADE IN HONG KONG AND IMPORTED BY THE FELDMAN CO., LATE 50'S-EARLY 60'S. Please contact me with any questions. I have a total of three lights at different lengths.The chains measure 16",12" and 7" long. They can easily be rewired to be longer or grouped all 3 together.
These are vintage and the wear is consistent with age and and can be kept with the current patina or polished for a brighter look. The lights measure 9.75" wide and 8.5"Tall.
Please contact me with any further questions.

          Financial Review - June, 2017   
June was another good month for the portfolio with small gains across the board producing a 2.07 percent increase in net assets.

For the year, the portfolio is up 10.10%. The adjusted change from when I retired in September 2013 is a 17.12% increase. Hong Kong liquidity stands at 28.0 months of estimated outgoings, well down on January's 38.6 months due to new investments + a transfer to New Zealand but ahead of last month's after I sold some investments.

Here are the details:

1. my Hong Kong equities increased. I sold my shares in COSCO Ports (HK:1199) and a very small position in China New Economy Fund (HK:80). I reinvested some of the proceeds in Kowloon Development (HK:34) which offers a higher yield (around 7% on cost) and a significant discount to NAV which may or may not improve once legal uncertainty over a property development project in Macau is resolved. While I booked a profit on COSCO Ports, the company has been a serial underperformer which has failed to meet expectations either in terms of growth or dividend levels. The Fund was ditched at a small loss after it appeared in David Webb's list of "50 stocks not to own". This is a lesson in not doing sufficient due diligence - at the time I invested, NAV was above HK$0.80 and the shares were trading ago around HK$0.24. I did check the values of the listed shares in the fund's portfolio to ensure that their values had not fallen significantly but I did not look into the merits of those shares individually. As it turns out a significant number of the Fund's investments were also on the list and plunged spectacularly wiping out a significant amount of investor value;

2. my AU/NZ equities rose slightly. I purchased additional shares in Automative Holdings (ASX: AHG), believing the market had over-reacted to a slowdown in Australian car sales + potential changes to the way car's are finance in Australia. My expected yield on purchase price is above 6%;

3.my equity ETFs were up slightly (India, Hong Kong and China) in line with the local markets;

4. my position in silver fell;

5. all tenants are paying on time and all properties are let;

6. the AUD and NZD were up against the HKD/USD;

7. my position in bonds remains small but improved this month when I purchased some 1 year notes issued by part of the Hainan Airlines group using a margin facility - this is a carry trade.

8. expenses were low with no travelling and no other non-regular domestic bills incurred;

My HK cash position rose during the month due to sales of HK equities mentioned above. I currently hold 28.0 months of expenses in HKD cash or equivalents (down from 38.6 months on 1 January).

I have revamped my spreadsheets to capture all debt (previously some accounts were entered on a net basis). Total household gearing ((debt+accruals)/assets) is 9.28% of total assets. Property prices are as at 1 January, 2017, so this overstates the gearing ratio.

I would like to make some additional investments but am struggling to find good value in the markets I follow. With expectations of further rises in interest rates muted, I was tempted by the carry trade, and purchased the Hainan Airlines notes using a margin facility.
          Seoul "Asia's Unlikely Expat Haven"   

Seoul-based reporter Jason Strother recently wrote for the BBC that "while not an obvious choice for the jet-setting expat, South Korea’s high-energy capital has a lot to offer foreign professionals." Strother joins Korea FM reporter Chance Dorland to discuss the pros & cons of Seoul's expat lifestyle & how that differs from typical expat favorites in the region such as Hong Kong, Singapore or Tokyo. Check out his BBC article at http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20170326-seoul-power-asias-unlikely-expat-haven

Stream this episode online at http://www.spreaker.com/user/seoulitup/seoul-asias-unlikely-expat-haven

Download the full episode at http://api.spreaker.com/download/episode/11514734/seoul_asia_s_unlikely_expat_haven.mp3

Rate & Review this podcast at http://bit.ly/KFMReview

This episode is brought to you by SeoulStartups.com, an English speaking community for workers in Korea. Designers, developers and entrepreneurs share and discuss ideas, work, culture, startups, language and integration to the market and life in Korea. Networking in Korea when you don’t speak the local language fluently can be hard. Seoul Startups wants to bring the currently fragmented community into one place, where people can ask for help, advice, learn and make connections that will help them succeed in their career in Korea. Join today at SeoulStartups.com/.

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          Cheating Cancels ACT Exam Across South Korea   

Due to suspected cheating, this summer the ACT exam was cancelled for all test-takers in South Korea & Hong Kong in what became the first cancellation of the exam to ever affect an entire country, a decision that prevented some 5,500 students from taking the exam at 56 different test centers.

To find out how important the ACT is for South Korean students, & how those who were scheduled to take the test were affected by its cancellation, Korea FM’s Chance Dorland spoke with Peter Chi, the managing director of test prep company IvyConnection.

Rate & Review this podcast at http://bit.ly/KFMReview

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Mahjong este foarte asemănător cu Rummy si este jucat cu gresie. Obiectivul principal este de a construi seturi cu gresie prin desen şi eliminându-le. În diferite variante are dale de diferite, dar întotdeauna este jucat de patru jucători. Nu există pic de uniformitate în modul Mahjong este jucat în diferite provincii din China şi a jucat în mod diferit în Hong Kong, Taiwan şi Singapore. Mahjong chineză tradiţională este jucat cu 144 dale inclusiv 8 flowerseason dale şi unele variante să includă doar 136 dale fără flowerseason placi care sunt optional dale folosite pentru a aplica bonusuri. Regulilor prezentate aici se bazează pe o consolidare a diferitelor abordări diferite care este documentat în conformitate cu normele WSOM World Series de Mahjong care a încercat un set mai standardizat de reguli.
          IC Mall IC   

Buyer’s Nationality: Estonia Seller: IC Mall IC Seller Website: www.ic-mall-ic.com Seller Address: 19/F, Central Tower, 28 Queen’s Road, Central, , Tsuen Wan, N.T., 000852, Hong Kong Initial contact with the supplier: Search Engine Type of product(s) being purchased: microchips Value of the Purchase Order when the incident occurred: 3,001 to 6,000 USD Destination market of […]

The post IC Mall IC appeared first on SUPPLIER BLACKLIST.

          Jisong Electronics Ltd   

Buyer’s Nationality: France Seller: Jisong Electronics Ltd Seller Website: http://www.Electronics-ic.com Seller Address: Room 1505, Easey Commercial Building, 253-261 Hennessy Road,, , Wanchai, Hong Kong, 852, China Initial contact with the supplier: Search Engine Type of product(s) being purchased: Electronic Components Value of the Purchase Order when the incident occurred: 1,001 to 3,000 USD Destination market […]

The post Jisong Electronics Ltd appeared first on SUPPLIER BLACKLIST.

          Mall IC   

Need more information on the company Mall IC in Hong Kong China? If you’re looking to buy microchips be careful of scams. Refer below to read one buyer’s experience with this company when buying microchips. Buyer’s Nationality: Estonia Seller: Mall IC Seller Website: http://www.mall-ic.com Seller Address: 19/F, Central Tower, 28 Queen’s Road, Central, Tsuen Wan, […]

The post Mall IC appeared first on SUPPLIER BLACKLIST.

          Miraca Industrial Co Ltd   

Are you looking for information on the company Miraca Industrial Co Ltd from Hong Kong who sells airpax circuit breakers? If so, refer below to read one buyer’s experience with this company. Buyer’s Nationality: Finland Seller: Miraca Industrial Co Ltd Seller Website: www.key-chips.com Seller Address: Room 2022-2025, 20/F, HoKing Comm Ctr, 2-16 Fayuen Str, Mongkok, […]

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          Tangshan Yaqi Trade Co Ltd and Hong Kong Inpex Metal Limited   

Are you looking for information on  Tangshan Yaqi Trade Co Ltd & Hong Kong Inpex Metal Limited in Hebei China who sells diggers? If so, refer below to read one buyer’s experience with this company. Buyer’s Nationality: Russia Seller: Tangshan Yaqi Trade Co Ltd and HongKong Inpex Metal Limited Seller Website: http://tsyqgs.maoyigu.com/introduce/ Seller Address: No.3, Junrui […]

The post Tangshan Yaqi Trade Co Ltd and Hong Kong Inpex Metal Limited appeared first on SUPPLIER BLACKLIST.

          Kynix Semiconductor Hong Kong Limited   

Have you been researching on the company Kynix Semiconductor Hong Kong Limited in China who sells counterfeit electronics? If so, refer below to read one buyer’s experience when purchasing counterfeit electronics with this company. Buyer’s Nationality: France Seller: Kynix Semiconductor Hong Kong Limited Seller Website: http://www.kynix.com Seller Address: Room 10E Hangdu Building HuaFu Road No. 1006 […]

The post Kynix Semiconductor Hong Kong Limited appeared first on SUPPLIER BLACKLIST.

          6/30/2017: WORLD: Hong Kong braced for protests as Xi arrives   

Chinese President Xi Jinping landed in Hong Kong yesterday to mark the upcoming 20th anniversary of Beijing re-establishing sovereignty over the former British colony, accompanied by a formidable layer of security as authorities braced for...
          Protests heat up in Hong Kong as China's President Xi Jinping visits PLA garrison   
Chinese President Xi Jinping, visiting Hong Kong for the 20th anniversary of the city's return to Chinese rule, inspected more than 3,000 People's Liberation Army troops on Friday, as pro-democracy campaigners geared up for protests.
          HK democracy campaign cannot be ignored - Chris Patten   
Hong Kong's last UK governor speaks to the BBC ahead of the territory's handover anniversary to China.
          Born in 1997... in Hong Kong   
Hong Kong was handed over from Britain to China 20 years ago, ending over 100 years of colonial rule.
          7/1/2017: Around The World: Pens, Lipstick among Banned Items at HK Military Base   
Hong Kong: For the thousands of Chinese soldiers stationed in Hong Kong, the pen, it appears, is mightier than the sword. Pens, contraceptives, lipstick, eye drops, opium, perfume and pets were among an unlikely list of items guests were banned from...
          Kejahatan Guna Taktik Kotor Oleh Mahathir - Kisah Khairuddin dan Matthias   

Matthias & Khairuddin Dalang DoJ?

Bagaimana orang yang bankrup boleh ke luar negara? Siapa yang tolong selesaikan hutang?

Matthias and Khairuddin pernah terbang ke Amerika Syarikat untuk berjumpa pegawai FBI. Mereka berdua dibantu secara sulit oleh Timbalan Pengarah FBI iaitu Andrew McCabe.

Pada bulan September 2015, keluarlah cerita palsu di New York Times bahawa FBI hendak tangkap Najib. Padahal bila Najib ke New York pada 23 September 2015 untuk hadiri Perhimpunan Agung Bangsa Bangsa Bersatu, tidak pula FBI menahan Najib. Obama melayan Najib sebagai tetamu kehormat di sana.

Bermakna cerita New York Times itu karut. Siapa yang bayar untuk buat cerita itu? Apakah dana RM50 juta itu dibayar menerusi seseorang yang dihantar Mahathir dan Daim? Atas urusan apa Khairuddin jumpa McCabe, Timbalan Pengarah FBI?

McCabe juga adalah orang yang sama menghadiri sidang akhbar Peguam Negara Amerika Syarikat, Loretta Lynch’s pasa 20 Julai 2016.

Sidang akhbar di mana Lynch mengumumkan saman sivil  lebih USD$1 billion aset yang kononnya dicuri dari 1MDB.

Khairuddin dan Matthias sebelum itu ke Hong Kong, United Kingdom, and Perancis untuk membuat laporan polis mengenai 1MDB pada bulan Julai dan Ogos 2015. Semasa serangan awal Mahathir terhadap Najib dimulakan.

Khairuddin turut berjumpa Peguam Negara Switzerland di Bern, Switzerland untuk menceritakan tentang 1MDB.

Gambar Khairuddin dan Matthias di luar negara. Mereka berdua mahu terbang lagi pada jam 10.30 pagi, 18 September 2015 ke New York dan London tetapi telah ditahan oleh polis Malaysia di bawah SOSMA.

Apakah pemergian Khairuddin dan Matthias ke luar negara ini juga adalah sebahagian RM50 juta yang didedahkan Syed Saddiq kepada tiga orang Exco PPBM itu?

Jika USD $5 juta dibayar pada Clinton Foundation, bermakna ada lagi baki RM30 juta dari RM50 juta yang didedahkan oleh Syed Saddiq. RM30 juta ini bayar Matthias dan Khairuddin untuk buat kerja kerja mensabotaj ekonomi negara?

Ya, mungkin. Kerana itulah Daim dan Mahathir yakin sangat bercakap bahawa Malaysia akan bankrup. Rupaya orang yang pernah bankrup ini buat kerja hendak bagi negara bankrup.

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          Christina Beardsley   
It's been a while since I considered religion as a topic, but it's been in my mind a lot lately. I was raised in a strongly Christian family, but have been increasingly critical and questioning of much of that for many years now. I have nonetheless experienced quite a considerable amount of existential guilt about exploring my gender identity. Not all of that relates, of course, to religion, but it all fitted together: religious views of sex as dirty, impure and shameful featured large in my upbringing, and there was no tolerance whatever of any idea of homosexuality or transgenderism.

The Old Testament contains stern and forbidding passages like this one:
He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD. --Deuteronomy 23:1.
Ouch! Make sure you look after your stones! Some people view transgender behaviour as inherently sinful. As you know, I don't agree. I believe that this is the way I was created: a man with a generous spoonful of woman in the mixture. In addition, I think that Jesus went out of his way to befriend the marginalised people in his society: lepers and prostitutes and tax collectors and whatnot. These days, if Jesus were among us, I think he would (among others) be befriending transgender people--and no doubt attracting the same scorn and criticism for doing so, as he did back then.

Christina Beardsley
We seem to be in the midst of a landslide in transgender acceptance, where transgender people seem to be everywhere: in the media, in sports, in politics, in the military, in entertainment, in the arts, and so on. So what of deeply religious people, those in ministry? Are there any transgender clerics out there? The answer turns out to be yes, although they are not easy to track down. I wanted to talk to them: to ask them about their own journeys; how their gender conflicted (or perhaps not) with their faith; about how they face up to those disapproving biblical passages. And I was delighted when I was able to make contact with the Rev. Dr. Christina "Tina" Beardsley, an ordained woman priest in the Church of England, who happened to be born a boy. Tina has been in ministry for nearly four decades, and worked as a hospital chaplain in the UK for the last 15 years, and has recently retired. She is the author of several books, and a blog (see the end of this article for details).

Not only did she kindly agree to submit to my battery of interview questions, she provided detailed answers. I hope you will find those answers as interesting and enlightening as I did. She taught me that priest can be used as a verb, and she can spell mediaeval, and I learned a whole new (and somewhat wonderful) word: transcestors.

Can you tell us a bit about your trans journey? (A potted life story, if you will).

It’s tempting to compartmentalise our lives, and when communicating to others one might have to focus on the trans aspects of the journey, but I see my life as a whole, and am glad that you reframe this question by asking for a potted life story.

I’m 65 years old now so that’s a fairly long life history. I was born in West Yorkshire, in the north of England, near an industrial town, but grew up in a small town on the edge of the Peak District. I am the eldest of two, and my brother was born when I was 6. My family was working class – I come from a long line of miners on my father’s side (though my dad did not work down the pit) and country house (the home of industrialists) gardeners on my mother’s side. I was the first person from my family to go to university.

My childhood was relatively happy but my gender presentation was problematic to my father in particular. I once overheard him complaining to my maternal grandmother how unhappy he was that I was ‘so effeminate’ which came as something of a shock, though it shouldn’t have, as I can recall many occasions from my earliest childhood when he expressed disapproval with my gendered behaviour. My grandmother’s response was that he should not worry and that it was something that I would ‘grow out of’. Through therapy I have learnt to appreciate that I was feminine rather than effeminate and that my femininity is something that I have ‘grown into’, though not without a struggle because there were many years of denial and suppression before I was able to accept myself.

You said that you were "feminine rather than effeminate". Can you unpack what that means exactly?

Effeminate is a pejorative term arising from the hierarchy in which the male is considered superior to the female and feminine boys/men whether or not they turn out to be trans are taunted with all sorts of unpleasant names. To see oneself instead as feminine reclaims and owns one's behaviours or gender expression as fitting, appropriate and nothing to be ashamed of.

Like many people who are not understood within their family I found escape in study, and when it was time to go to university I went to Sussex University in Brighton, a city that has always had a liberal, even naughty reputation. That was 1970-73 and while at university I met the man who would become my husband. In my mid-teens I had begun to realise that I was attracted to males, but there was also ‘something else’ going on--cross dressing--which I was not able to talk about, and which I also associated with the childhood shame of being ‘effeminate’. I was very fortunate in my partner because he preferred feminine men and told me that was one reason that he found me attractive. We certainly talked about drag, and one of my fantasies while preparing for university, had been to join a drag entertainment collective (like Bloolips) and maybe not change back into male clothes, but I knew it was a fantasy.

Courtesy of the State I was receiving a wonderful education in the study of religion, mediaeval philosophy and church history, and when I graduated I had the opportunity to go to Cambridge to do doctoral research. That kept me occupied for the next three years, and even though I was vaguely aware of another student who was in transition in Cambridge, and was intrigued, I didn’t see that as being for me at that time. Despite being in a loving relationship I think my self-awareness about being transgender (though that wouldn’t have been the term used then) was poor and my emotional intelligence still fairly limited.

I had experienced a call to ordained ministry when I was about twelve years old (in a small wood near the church) though I also had a strong sense that I should teach, and it wasn’t clear which of the two would have priority – today I realise that one could do both! I was accepted for ordination training and went to theological college, which meant another two years of study, followed by three years as an assistant curate (assistant minister) in a city parish in Portsmouth. My college principal, the bishop who ordained me, my training incumbent and the parish leadership were all aware that Rob was my partner and very affirming of us both. Sexuality was the dominating issue in my life at that point, rather than gender identity, though of course that had not gone away but, hey, there were plenty of other things to think about and to do.

When it was time to move on my training incumbent asked me to stay on in the parish to look after one of the daughter churches, which I did for another four years before leaving the city to become the vicar of two rural/suburban parishes, where I was even busier, but it was here that the Holy Spirit broke in and ministered the divine love to my heart.

By the late 1980s I had been vicar of the two parishes for four years. It was just as the AIDS epidemic struck the UK and was a very bad time for gay people in the Church, especially gay clergy. Remember that gay and trans were still blurred in the 1970s and 80s; this was 1989. I woke in the night knowing I must include these words in my sermon the next day: ‘God loves me, including the fact that I’m gay.’ It wasn’t a good career move, but I felt an imperative and as if this was ‘meant to be’.

A few days later the Sunday School leader came to see me about something else. ‘It’s wonderful that you came out’ she said as she left, ‘It’s such a good role model to see a gay man in a caring profession.’ And I thought to myself, ‘But I never said that I was a man!’ That was when I knew, definitely, who I was, and that, however I might have appeared on the outside--and by this time testosterone had begun to masculinise my features--I was, as I began to express it at the time, ‘90% to 100% female on the inside’, though I can appreciate that may sound strange to some people; nor was I clear what it would mean for me at that stage. I’m aware that this is becoming a long answer, so let me say more about this episode and about what happened next as I try to answer the next question.

How did that overlap with your spiritual life? I know that you were ordained before you transitioned. Did you think that ordination would somehow prevent you transitioning? Or did you consider that you might pursue transition at some point post-ordination?

photo by Christa Holka
In terms of gender awareness I had always been intellectually committed to the ordination of women, and after ordination became a member of Priests for the Ordination of Women. It was apparent to those around me that I was a feminist. The ordination of women as priests in the Church of England proved a much longer struggle than any of us had anticipated, but when it eventually happened (the successful vote was in 1992) I was not as elated as I had expected to be.

When I was ordained in 1978 Church of England priests had all been male, and later, in therapy, by which time women were being priested, one of my dreams suggested that this dynamic had been going on in my mind: ‘priests are male; I am a priest; therefore I am male.’ Once women were ordained though, this stasis was undermined and I was forced to reframe it: ‘priests are male and female, I am a priest, therefore I am … female’. So, although it occasionally occurred to me that I might transition post-ordination, especially after seeing the landmark BBC programme about Julia Grant in 1980, I always found reasons why this was not appropriate – some of them to do with natural law and living with one’s given body – and just hoped this was something that would ‘go away’. The green light for women’s ordination made me face up to my gender identity.
Did you pray to God not to be transgender? (I know I have, many times).

Once I began to recognise that I had ‘a problem’, yes, I did pray that God would take it away permanently – on one memorable occasion I was driving along a dual carriage making this my earnest prayer… and one of the tyres punctured! It was a dramatic sign, but what did it mean?

It took time to sink in, but it looked as if God was not going to magically remove this aspect of my personality, and that, just as with my sexual attraction, my gender identity was also loved by God, and I would need to learn to love it too. You see, those words about God’s love that had formed during the night in 1989 had come out of considerable pain, following the death of my training incumbent, and had set in motion a train of events during which, as a friend remarked, I appeared to have faced my demons. I had certainly felt as if I was experiencing death and resurrection and I knew, just knew, that Paul’s words were true, that nothing, nothing in all creation can separate us from the love of God. This was to give greater depth to my work as a priest and prepared me for the intensely pastoral role I would begin a few years later as a hospital chaplain.

A new spiritual practice that developed from that ‘coming out’ in 1989 was that I immediately began to dance – circle dance with friends, then movement classes in Skinner Releasing Technique, and later still contemporary dance classes at the Brighton Natural Health Centre on my days off. This practice helped me to relate to my body – I seemed to have spent so much of my life in my head avoiding the body – and alongside other women. Occasionally there would be men in the class but more often the other participants were women and I felt wholly at ease. Eventually my dance CV was extensive enough to gain me an interview as a part-time research supervisor at the Laban Centre of Contemporary Dance, but I was not appointed. This was in the late 1990s, by which time I knew that I needed to transition and that I might not be able to work for the Church, but I am a priest and it seems I was not meant to be anything else.

How did knowledge of your transition go down with your parishioners? And what about fellow priests and bishops? Did you meet any hostility or rejection? Is that still going on sometimes?

In 1997, roughly seven years after the ‘coming out’, I was planning a long overdue sabbatical from the parishes, and given my interest in dance, I assumed that I would be attending a dance academy, but when I applied not one was able to take me during the months I was available. Again, it was in the night that it came to me that I must use the sabbatical to address various ‘unfinished business’, one of which was my gender identity. Just prior to the sabbatical I took part in Diane Torr’s five day workshop ‘Gender in Performance’ at the Chisenhale Dance Space in London’s East End, and I knew after that that I did not want to be sometimes male and sometimes female – like Diane who is a Drag King – but that I needed to integrate my gender identity, though how I would do that as a parish priest was not at all clear.

photo by Christa Holka
I was not aware of any transgender role models for clergy: the one clergy person who transitioned at this time did so on retirement, nor did I think it was fair to the parishes where I worked to land them with another coming out! They had been affirming in 1989 but I did not want to impose ‘my stuff’ on them again; and in any case, after fifteen years in post, I was ready for a move. In my annual ministerial reviews it emerged that I ought to work part-time (in my mind to deal with the rigours of transition), that I should work in a non-parochial role (to establish better boundaries between work and home) and that, ideally, I should live in our own home. This would happen in 2000 when I was appointed to a very part-time post as a chaplain at a hospital ten minutes’ drive from our house.

By this time I’d been on hormones about six months, was living as a female, and working as an androgynous male. Five months later, in November 2000, I met with my manager to raise the possibility of transition at work, and was on the point of discussing this with the acting bishop when the press began to track me down – I had been outed to a journalist by another trans person who was also a Christian. (This seemed a catastrophe at the time, but in retrospect it was a blessing as it would open up many opportunities for me, but I was unaware of this then and it was all rather terrifying.)

Although I was not named in the press at that stage it made my discussions with the bishop extremely strained as there were huge anxieties surrounding possible press exposure. I’d like to think that the bishop might have been more understanding had we not been meeting in this fraught context, but his opinion was that he could not support me and that I should surrender my licence, which I needed to continue as a chaplain in that particular hospital. This was one of the most painful episodes of my life, but transgender people were not well understood at that date, and with the support of the human rights organisation Liberty, I held my ground.

I also began to look for work elsewhere because it was apparent that, whatever the outcome, I was not being supported and I didn’t feel safe. I was now presenting as female all the time and had three job interviews in a row, and it was after the last one that I was appointed to the hospital where I have worked for the past fifteen years and from which I’ve just retired. My new bishop was cautious about my status to begin with and I was under his direct supervision, but after three or four years it was obvious to him that there had been no ‘issues’ and that I was in my element as a chaplain – well of course, because I was now at last able to be myself.

Prior to taking up my new post the press did try to ‘expose’ me but my former hospital’s press officer was ready for that, and my story in my own words was sent off to the Press Association to prevent the newspaper concerned claiming an exclusive. Prior to transition at work I wrote to friends, former parishioners, and the priest who had succeeded me in the parishes, explaining what I was about to do. Most people were supportive.

Do you know other transgender clerics? Perhaps even those of other faiths? How do they get along?

In 2000, while I was working towards transition, my clinician informed me that another priest was transitioning. He could not tell me who it was of course. When the news broke in the media it turned out to be Carol Stone with whom I had been at theological college. Carol was supported by her bishop and her parishioners, remaining as parish priest until her untimely death last year. Later I would meet the priest who transitioned on retirement. I was next in line to transition after Carol.

Some of those who followed me were less fortunate. One was given an ultimatum – give this up or resign: she chose to resign and is no longer in public ministry. Another was told to withdraw from her parish until her transition was complete: it would be a decade before she returned to ministry. Those who were ordained after transition – I am aware of two such clergy and of others currently in training – seem to have a better time. Another friend lost her public ministry because of transition.

My impression is that trans clergy and ordinands are better supported now than when I transitioned although the Church of England still lacks a policy for clergy who transition – something that I and other Changing Attitude, England trustees have urged the Church to do.

I have networked with trans clergy and laity in the US and attended the Episcopal Church’s General Convention in Indianapolis in 2012 when three trans inclusive resolutions were passed. Yes, I do know of trans clergy from other faith traditions – one of my friends is a rabbi – not least through Twilight People: Stories of Faith and Gender Beyond the Binary.

I am sorry to nail you down to this, but I am curious about your interpretation of some Biblical passages, which are sometimes used to justify trans-exclusionary views. The first is obviously Deuteronomy 22:5. Can you let us know what your thoughts are about that passage? (You might say that you are now a woman, and I would agree with you, but other people, as you know, might disagree, and say that you were born a male and therefore remain one).
The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God.
The Deuteronomy verse troubled me a little as a child but even then I realised that the New Covenant was more gracious than the Old, and studying biblical criticism soon clarified that this verse was not about twentieth century cross dressing. Indeed, the text begins with a prohibition on women wearing men’s clothes, in particular armour, so it appears to be about prescribing gender roles and avoiding a mixing of categories that is completely broken down by the ministry of Jesus and the work of Christ.

And my second passage is Matthew 19:12. What do you suppose Matthew was talking about here when he was talking about "eunuchs"? Do you think he meant intersex people when he talked about "people born eunuchs"? Can you give us your interpretation of that passage? (As you know, some people interpret scripture very literally, so I am trying hard to get a scholarly viewpoint).
For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother's womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of [by] men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.
It’s a fascinating passage. Just as St Paul thinks that it is better not to marry, because the end times have begun (1Corinthians 7:25-31), here Jesus seems to be saying that the arrival of the kingdom means that some people (his apostles) are to be entirely focussed on its concerns rather than procreation, marriage and family, which were strongly emphasised under the Old Covenant, and, one could add, are once more in modern Christianity.  The early Christian tradition too favoured virginity over marriage.

In this passage it seems likely that Jesus was referring to those we would describe as intersex people, and also to the eunuchs who played such an important mediating role in ancient societies, and who do appear to have represented a third gender. I can relate to a theological essay like Lewis Reay’s chapter ‘Towards a Transgender Theology: Que(e)rying the Eunuchs’ in Trans/formations (SCM 2009) which regards the biblical eunuchs as our ‘transcestors’, but can also appreciate the criticism that this could imply undue focus on surgery, and that other biblical frameworks might be more appropriate – my current collaborator Chris Dowd is working on this.

Like the virgins and infertile women of the Old Testament, the eunuchs were ‘barren’ but God seems to choose these unlikely people to demonstrate that God alone is the arbiter of fruitfulness, as Isaiah prophesied (Isaiah 56) and as the baptism of the Ethiopian eunuch in the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 8:26-end) illustrates.
 Are there any Biblical passages which you consider supportive to trans people? I guess I am asking which are your personal favourites?

I have learned of many such passages from my friend Peterson Toscano, especially his show Transfigurations –Transgressing Gender in the Bible and by reading some of the scholarship that lies behind it. The gender variant people in the Bible he performs or refers to in this show are the Judge Deborah (Judges 4 & 5), Joseph in the Genesis (Chapters 37 onward) narrative (whose supposedly colourful coat is probably ‘a princess dress’), the eunuchs in the Book of Esther, the ‘man’ (though the Greek word used is for human being rather than for a male) carrying the jar of water, a woman’s role, (Mark 14:13, Luke 22:10), and a female disciple interpreted in the light of verses from the Gospel of Thomas.

In the Old Testament my favourite passage is the Joseph narrative in Genesis, not least because there God turns disaster into blessing, as God seemed to do for me following the attempted outing during my transition. My New Testament favourite is Galatians3:28:
There is not Jew nor Greek, there is not slave nor free, there is not male and female, for all of you are one in Christ Jesus
...and my favourite New Testament book is the Gospel of John which is astonishing, powerful, utterly beautiful, and yet profoundly earthed in first century culture, the Word made flesh indeed. In this gospel Jesus sits at the well with the Samaritan woman, and we observe his affection for the family at Bethany: Martha, Mary and their brother Lazarus.

What do you think about the Biblical role of women? It certainly seems to me that the Bible seems to regard women as being subservient to men, and many female figures (I am thinking about, say Eve, or Delilah, or Salome, or Jezebel, or the Whore of Babylon) are depicted as temptresses, adulteresses, and moral corruptors of men; while all the heroic figures (Moses, Abraham, David, Solomon, Jesus, the Apostles) are all men. (Of course there are exceptions on both sides).

The Bible could be read as highly misogynist were we to focus on the women mentioned here, although feminist and queer readings are questioning such interpretations by examining the way editors and redactors have shaped the material. These readings highlight the strength of biblical women, and let’s be clear, there are plenty of examples of men – even those chosen by God – behaving badly!

I love the way it is now common to name the matriarchs as well as the patriarchs: Sarah, Rebekah, Rachel and Leah are constrained by patriarchal conventions but also subvert them. When my chaplaincy role was based mainly in the women and children’s division, including maternity, I thoroughly enjoyed reading Anita Diamant’s take on Jacob’s wives and midwifery in her novel The Red Tent. The early church’s emphasis on virginity has affected traditional interpretations of Mother Mary and Mary Magdalen but there are plenty of feminist readings of both, and I loved Carlo Caretto’s Blessed are you who believed (Burns & Oates 1982) which locates Mother Mary in her middle eastern setting, and the deconstructive reflections and  poetry of Nicola Slee’s The Book of Mary (SPCK 2007).

Can you talk more about the Sibyls? Are they an international organisation? What other organisations exist which are supportive of transgender Christians?

Sibyls, Christian Spirituality for transgender people, is a UK organisation, but it has had members from further afield, including as far away as Hong Kong.

It was founded as a support network by Jay Walmsley in 1996, at a time when trans people were being turned away from their churches if they came out or transitioned. Churches are much more inclusive today, but in those days Holy Communion was celebrated at every meeting as people were being denied this sacrament in their own churches then.  Sibyls has always held meetings in both the north and the south of England (and in Wales) and the pattern has been two retreat weekends a year, plus social gatherings. People talk to one another on the retreats – conversations with other transgender Christians being vitally important – and there are prayer times morning and evening, free time, and a film or home-made entertainment (the latter was usual in the past, and intended to help people gain self-confidence). There is now a London meeting every two months, which begins with Evening Prayer at St Anne’s, Soho, and then members go out dinner together. Sibyls’ members are involved in educating the churches about transgender people through workshops, research, speaking engagements and writing.

photo by Christa Holka
The Sibyls is the main organisation for transgender Christians, but LGBTI Christian organisations like Changing Attitude, England (which had three trans trustees at one point) and the Lesbian & Gay Christian Movement (LGCM), whose former CEO identified as genderqueer, (these two organisations are about to merge) are supportive of gender variant people and campaign on their behalf, as does the LGBTI Anglican Mission, Inclusive Church, Accepting Evangelicals, Diverse Church (aimed at younger people) and others beside.

What is your relationship status currently?

I was married in 2006, following Gender Recognition and the issue of an amended birth certificate thanks to the passing of the UK Gender Recognition Act 2004.

Your husband presumably fell in love with you when he thought you were a gay man. How did he handle you becoming a woman?

Well, as I've said in the narrative I never fully saw myself as a gay man - gay yes but not really male and on reflection Rob has said that he can see now that I always was a woman looking back, for example, at the times that we were n holiday, sitting each side of a table, and irrespective of how we may have been perceived by others.

Which famous person would you most like to meet, and why?

A fun question and one I rarely get chance to think about. Recently, though, I was sad to discover that my dance heroine, Gabrielle Roth, had died five years ago and that I had left it too late to try to visit her in New York. The Five Rhythms practice she developed has been important for me and I would have loved to have heard about it directly from her rather than from her books and videos though her ‘voice’ is strong in both. I’m a big fan of the BBC television programme Call the Midwife, and as a chaplain have tended to see my better self as the rather wonderful sister superior, Sister Julienne, while knowing deep down that I am probably more like the ancient Sister Monica Joan, who is sadly teetering on the brink of dementia, but remains profound and wise, and is always raiding the biscuit tin. Tea with the two actresses who play these characters – Jenny Agutter and Judy Parfitt – would be lovely!

May I ask one last question? What advice would you personally give to people who feel a powerful conflict between what they feel their gender to be, and what their religion teaches them?

That's a big question in that it could cover so many varied experiences and, as I said in another interview, I'm not supposed to give advice, but since you ask ... I think it's wonderful that we have the internet which we didn't when I was exploring these things, so, researching via the internet, reading books on the subject and networking with other gender variant people of faith would be my initial advice.


With all my interviews, I like to reflect on a few points. Clearly there is a lot to talk about, and since this article is already very long, I might save some of it for the next time.

First, this interview only reinforces my idea that transgender people are everywhere: in every walk of life. You need only look, and there they are; and in fact, as has often happened before when I talk to someone, I realise that not only are there transgender Christians (including some in ministry and the religious life), there are a lot more of them, being a lot more active, than I had previously thought!

It doesn't surprise me that transgender clerics exist: Jesus chose only male apostles (which has long been used as justification for keeping women out of ministry). But a lot of Jesus' behaviour is what we might associate with femininity: nurturing, avoiding conflict, kindness to the sick, the elderly and children. Therefore men who (like me) relate strongly to that aspect of Jesus' work might easily possess a strong feminine side.

I had hoped that Tina might provide some resources to those of you who might be struggling with a conflict between what your own heart tells you is your gender, and what your religion tells you is your gender. And I am delighted that she has provided several resources to consider. As someone who has been a priest for many years, she clearly has reliable credentials to draw upon. If you are questioning, or worried, or ashamed, or guilty, it's clear that you are not alone; others have walked the same path, and there is plenty out there to inform, support and guide you.

In terms of what Deuteronomy forbids and permits, I must say I don't put much store in any of that. The same chapter describes that you must build a parapet on your roof in case someone falls off it; that you must not plough your field with a donkey and an ox together; that you must not wear a garment woven of two different fibres (such as wool and linen); and that you must make tassels for the four corners of the cloak you cover yourself with.

Many of the old Testament books contain prohibitions against all kinds of things. It makes sense (to me) to advise people to build a parapet on the roof to stop somebody falling off. It makes sense if you see one of your brother's sheep straying, for you to bring it back if he is not around. It doesn't make sense (to me, at least), to prohibit wearing of garments made of two or more fibres (this practice is in any case nearly ubiquitous these days). Deuteronomy 21:15 warns of the scenario where a man has two wives, one loved and the other unloved: a man must treat his first-born son with honour, even if he is born to the unloved wife. Bigamy is illegal in the Western world, though Deuteronomy talks about it as if it's not unusual. So Deuteronomy discusses activities which are now illegal on the one hand, and near-ubiquitous on the other (for a humorous and powerful discussion along these lines, take a look here). Therefore I cannot use it, in isolation, as any sort of useful rulebook to live by.

The wonderful BBC programme The Why Factor has an episode devoted to cross-dressing. The presenter, Mike Williams, talks to consultant psychiatrist Dr. James Barrett, from London. Barrett points out that this is evidence that cross-dressing probably happened even in Old Testament times: why bother to prohibit something if nobody is doing it anyway?

To those who would argue that being transgender is inherently wrong or sinful, I would point to Tina, who has shown that one can be transgender and live a life in Christian ministry at the same time.

I hope that this article provokes more conversation on the topic of transgenderism and religion. Comments from other faiths apart from Christianity are especially welcome (though I propose to talk further about other faiths in a future article).

My thanks to Tina, for taking time to answer my questions so fully, and for providing the photos which I have used to illustrate this article.


Tina is co-editor, with her long-time collaborator, Michelle O’Brien, of ‘the Sibyls’ book’ This is My Body: hearing the theology of transgender Christians. She also wrote, The Transsexual Person is My Neighbour: Pastoral Guidelines for Clergy, Ministers and Congregations, to which Michelle contributed an Appendix on Intersex people. Published by the Gender Trust, it is now out of print but is available online here or here or here. Tina is now working with Chris Dowd on a transgender pastoral care manual, which is due for publication in 2018 by Darton, Longman & Todd, and is based on Chris’s research into transpeople’s spirituality.

Tina is sole author of a biography of a notable Victorian preacher, Unutterable Love: the Passionate Life and Preaching of FW Robertson (Lutterworth 2009). Robertson was preoccupied, both personally and theologically, with the relations between the sexes, or as we would describe it today, ‘gender’. Follow this link for the book’s contents and free access to its Preface, Introduction and the 2nd Chapter.

Tina has also blogged for some time about transgender people and faith here. You can also read her interview with the Cambridge Festival of Ideas here.

          Sat Jul 1st Todays News   
Some things should not happen, but they do. 

In 69, Tiberius Julius Alexander ordered his Roman legions in Alexandria to swear allegiance to Vespasian as Emperor. 552, Battle of TaginaeByzantine forces under Narses defeated the Ostrogoths in Italy. During the fightings king Totila was mortally wounded. 1097, Battle of DorylaeumCrusaders led by prince Bohemond of Taranto defeated a Seljuk army led by sultan Kilij Arslan I. 1431, the Battle of La Higueruela took place in Granada, leading to a modest advance of the Kingdom of Castile during the Reconquista.

In 1523, Johann Esch and Heinrich Voes became the first Lutheran martyrs, burned at the stake by Roman Catholic authorities in Brussels. They were Augustinian monks. Others from their monastery had recanted. These refused.  1569, Union of Lublin: The Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania confirmed a real union; the united country is called the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth or the Republic of Both Nations. 1643, first meeting of the Westminster Assembly, a council of theologians ("divines") and members of the Parliament of England appointed to restructure the Church of England, at Westminster Abbey in London. 1690, Glorious RevolutionBattle of the Boyne in Ireland (as reckoned under the Julian calendar). 1766, Jean-François de la Barre, a young French nobleman, was tortured and beheaded before his body was burnt on a pyre along with a copy of Voltaire's Dictionnaire philosophique nailed to his torso for the crime of not saluting a Roman Catholic religious procession in AbbevilleFrance. It sounds excessive, but he was a protestant. 1770, Lexell's Comet passed closer to the Earth than any other comet in recorded history, approaching to a distance of 0.0146 a.u. 1782, Raid on Lunenburg: American privateers attacked the British settlement of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.

In 1837, a system of civil registration of births, marriages and deaths was established in England and Wales. 1855, signing of the Quinault Treaty: The Quinault and the Quileute ceded their land to the United States. 1858, joint reading of Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace's papers on evolution to the Linnean Society in London. 1862, The Russian State Library was founded as The Library of the Moscow Public Museum. Also 1862, Princess Alice of the United Kingdom, second daughter of Queen Victoria, married Prince Louis of Hesse, the future Louis IV, Grand Duke of Hesse. Also 1862, American Civil War: The Battle of Malvern Hill took place. It is the final battle in the Seven Days Campaign, part of George B. McClellan's Peninsula Campaign. 1863, Keti Koti (Emancipation Day) in Suriname, marked the abolition of slavery by the Netherlands. Also, American Civil War: The Battle of Gettysburg began. 1867, the British North America Act of 1867 took effect as the Constitution of Canada, creating the Canadian Confederation and the federal dominion of Canada; Sir John A. Macdonald was sworn in as the first Prime Minister of Canada. This date was commemorated annually in Canada as Canada Day, a national holiday.

In 1870, the United States Department of Justice formally came into existence. 1873, Prince Edward Island joined the Canadian Confederation. 1874, the Sholes and Glidden typewriter, the first commercially successful typewriter, went on sale. 1878, Canada joined the Universal Postal Union. 1879, Charles Taze Russell published the first edition of the religious magazine The Watchtower. 1881, the world's first international telephone call was made between St. Stephen, New Brunswick, Canada, and Calais, Maine, United States. Also 1881, General Order 70, the culmination of the Cardwell and Childers reforms of the British Army, came into effect. 1885, the United States terminated reciprocity and fishery agreement with Canada. 1890, Canada and Bermuda were linked by telegraph cable. 1898, Spanish–American War: The Battle of San Juan Hill was fought in Santiago de Cuba.

In 1903, start of first Tour de France bicycle race. 1908, SOS was adopted as the international distress signal. 1911, Germany despatched the gunship Panther to Morocco, sparking the Agadir Crisis. 1915, Leutnant Kurt Wintgens of the then-named German Fliegertruppe air service achieved the first known aerial victory with a synchronized machine-gun armed fighter plane, the Fokker M.5K/MG Eindecker. 1916, World War IFirst day on the Somme: On the first day of the Battle of the Somme 19,000 soldiers of the British Army were killed and 40,000 wounded. 1921, the Communist Party of China was founded. 1922, the Great Railroad Strike of 1922 began in the United States. 1923, the Canadian Parliament suspended all Chinese immigration. 1931, United Airlines began service (as Boeing Air Transport). 1932, Australia's national broadcaster, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, was formed. 1935, Regina, Saskatchewan police and Royal Canadian Mounted Police ambushed strikers participating in the On-to-Ottawa Trek.

In 1942, World War IIFirst Battle of El Alamein. Also 1942, the Australian Federal Government became the sole collector of income tax in Australia as State Income Tax was abolished. 1943, Tokyo City merged with Tokyo Prefecture and was dissolved. Since this date, no city in Japan has the name "Tokyo" (present-day Tokyo is not officially a city). 1947, the Philippine Air Force was established. 1948, Muhammad Ali Jinnah (Quaid-i-Azam) inaugurated Pakistan's central bank, the State Bank of Pakistan. 1949, the merger of two princely states of India, Cochin and Travancore, into the state of Thiru-Kochi (later re-organized as Kerala) in the Indian Union ended more than 1,000 years of princely rule by the Cochin Royal Family. 1957, the International Geophysical Year began. 1958, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation linked television broadcasting across Canada via microwave. Also 1958, flooding of Canada's St. Lawrence Seaway began. 1959, the Party of the African Federation held its constitutive conference. Also 1959, specific values for the international yardavoirdupois pound and derived units (e.g. inch, mile and ounce) were adopted after agreement between the U.S.A., the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth countries.

In 1960, independence of Somalia. Also 1960, Ghana became a Republic and Kwame Nkrumah became its first President as Queen Elizabeth II ceased to be its Head of state. 1962, independence of Rwanda. Also 1962, independence of Burundi. 1963, ZIP codes were introduced for United States mail. Also 1963, the British Government admitted that former diplomat Kim Philby had worked as a Soviet agent. 1966, the first color television transmission in Canada took place from Toronto. 1967, the European Community was formally created out of a merger with the Common Market, the European Coal and Steel Community, and the European Atomic Energy Commission. Also 1967, Canada celebrated the 100th anniversary of the British North America Act, 1867, which officially made Canada its own federal dominion. 1968, the United States Central Intelligence Agency's Phoenix Program was officially established. Also 1968, the Nuclear non-proliferation treaty was signed in Washington, D.C., London and Moscow by sixty-two countries. Also 1968, formal separation of the United Auto Workers from the AFL–CIO in the United States. 1970, President General Yahya Khan abolished One-Unit of West Pakistan restoring the provinces. 1972, the first Gay Pride march in England took place. 1976, Portugal granted autonomy to Madeira. 1978, the Northern Territory in Australia was granted Self-Government. 1979, Sony introduced the Walkman.

In 1980, "O Canada" officially became the national anthem of Canada. 1981, the Wonderland murders occurred in the early morning hours in Los Angeles, allegedly masterminded by businessman and drug dealer Eddie Nash. 1983, a North Korean Ilyushin Il-62M jet en route to Conakry Airport in Guinea crashed into the Fouta Djallon mountains in Guinea-Bissau, killing all 23 people on board. 1984, the PG-13 rating was introduced by the MPAA. 1987, the American radio station WFAN in New York, New York was launched as the world's first all-sports radio station. 1990, German reunificationEast Germany accepted the Deutsche Mark as its currency, thus uniting the economies of East and West Germany. 1991, the Warsaw Pact was officially dissolved at a meeting in Prague. 1997, China resumed sovereignty over the city-state of Hong Kong, ending 156 years of British colonial rule. 1999, the Scottish Parliament was officially opened by Elizabeth II on the day that legislative powers were officially transferred from the old Scottish Office in London to the new devolved Scottish Executive in Edinburgh.

In 2002, the International Criminal Court was established to prosecute individuals for genocidecrimes against humanitywar crimes, and the crime of aggression. Also 2002, Bashkirian Airlines Flight 2937 and a DHL (German cargo) Boeing 757 collided in mid-air over Überlingen, southern Germany, killing all 71 on board. 2003, over 500,000 people protested against efforts to pass anti-sedition legislation in Hong Kong. 2004, Saturn orbit insertion of Cassini–Huygens began at 01:12 UTC and ends at 02:48 UTC. 2006, the first operation of Qinghai–Tibet Railway in China. 2007, the Concert for Diana was held at the new Wembley Stadium in London and broadcast in 140 countries. Also 2007, smoking in England was banned in all public indoor spaces. 2008, Rioting erupted in Mongolia in response to allegations of fraud surrounding the 2008 legislative elections. 2013, Croatia became the 28th member of the European Union. Also 2013, the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) began its operative peacekeeping mandate in Mali. Also 2013, Neptune's moon S/2004 N 1 was discovered.

I am very good and don't deserve the abuse given me. I created a video raising awareness of anti police feeling among western communities. I chose the senseless killing of Nicola Cotton, a Louisiana policewoman who joined post Katrina, to highlight the issue. I did this in order to get an income after having been illegally blacklisted from work in NSW for being a whistleblower. I have not done anything wrong. Local council appointees refused to endorse my work, so I did it for free. Youtube's Adsence refused to allow me to profit from their marketing it. Meanwhile, I am hostage to abysmal political leadership and hopeless journalists. My shopfront has opened on Facebook.

Here is a video I made Waltzing Matilda

I was asked to do a Banjo Patterson Poem. I thought I had done this, but I hadn't. This was made so as to tell the story, rather than sing the song.
"Waltzing Matilda" is Australia's most widely known bush ballad. A country folk song, the song has been referred to as "the unofficial national anthem of Australia"

Oh there once was a swagman camped in the billabongs,
Under the shade of a Coolibah tree;
And he sang as he looked at the old billy boiling
"Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me."

Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda, my darling.
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.
Waltzing Matilda and leading a water-bag.
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.

Up came the jumbuck to drink at the waterhole,
Up jumped the swagman and grabbed him with glee;
And he sang as he put him away in his tucker-bag,
"Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me."

Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda, my darling.
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.
Waltzing Matilda and leading a water-bag.
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.

Up came the squatter a-riding his thoroughbred;
Up came the policeman - one, two, and three.
"Whose is the jumbuck you've got in the tucker-bag?
You'll come a-waltzing Matilda with we."

Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda, my darling.
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.
Waltzing Matilda and leading a water-bag.
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.

Up sprang the swagman and jumped into the waterhole,
Drowning himself by the Coolibah tree;
And his voice can be heard as it sings in the billabongs,
"Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me."

Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda, my darling.
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.
Waltzing Matilda and leading a water-bag.
Who'll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.
Written 1895, first published as sheet music 1903.

=== from 2016 ===
 The political despatch of Boris Johnson, who had led the successful Brexit campaign, was as surprising as the success of the campaign. The Notting Hill set have eaten their own. David Cameron finally fell, having never managed to appear strongly conservative. But his stable mate of Gove had sided with Johnson as the face of Brexit, and then ripped support away from Johnson and denounced Johnson as being too identifiably the face of Brexit, and unable to unite the conservative party. In fairness, Gove could not unite the party either. Gove has ambition and ability, as does Theresa May. There are echoes of the Metherell affair in NSW when two friends, Terry Metherell and Nick Greiner ran afoul of political perfection and Greiner was subsequently unfairly forced to resign as Premier of NSW. One incompetent independent of the time who unfairly attacked Greiner was Tony Windsor. Windsor is still trying to hurt good conservative candidates. 

For some, at the moment, the Sex Party has more credibility.  
=== from 2015 ===
The Australian Broadcasting Corporation came into being on this day in 1932. It is a bureaucratic mess. But it isn't the worst mess on this day. In 1766, a young French nobleman, Jean-François de la Barre who was tortured and beheaded before his body was burned on a pyre. Also burned, pinned to his body, was a work of Voltaire. The crime the twenty year old man committed was said to be failing to bow to a religious procession, but the unpleasant truth is that he was a protestant in a catholic land. The ABC was created in the hope that the left leaning press in Australia would be balanced by state body which reported facts, not bias. The reality is that the ABC has never been balanced. 

Greece has defaulted on her IMF loan. Soon she will vote to approve or deny the imposition of austerity. But she has already done so, and her government ran on the lie that Greece didn't need austerity. Now the EU has a choice, but it isn't really a choice. Greece needs to be booted from the EU as a lesson in humility. It should never be the case that a nation employs people without paying them. The civilised world abhors slavery. 
From 2014
Today is an extraordinary day. The birthday of Semmelweis (1818) whose work as a physician gave rise to the legal term "Clean Hands". Or Dorothea Mackellar (1885) who beautifully described Australia in poetry. But for all the amazing wonderful things about today that I could point to, my mind is drawn to the infamous act of cowardice and butchery in which the three bodies of children of Israel were unearthed following their abduction. There is a cowardly dismissal of Middle East events involving Israel by those who do not know or care, that there is blood on both sides. But that is not the case. There is no analog for what Israel does that excuses this murder. It is inexcusable, and those who are responsible need to be brought to justice, and those who excuse should be discredited. 

Three boys went to a religious function and were on their way home when they were abducted. They were not warriors. Targeting them was an act of terror. One boy had been able to use his phone to let people know he had been abducted. That call was the last anyone heard him alive. It is not too hard to follow the mindset of the terrorists, but remarkably, one mother of one suspect has claimed she is proud of her son for doing it. I want religious authorities of the perpetrators to denounce the activity. If that mum has excused the activity, I want her discredited. Saddam Hussein had paid money to family of suicide bombers. If her people are serious about wanting peace, perhaps they will meet similar justice as was applied to Saddam. 

One imagines the terrorists alerted to the phone call told the boys that they would have to die and not merely be hostages because of it. They probably did their best to torture the boys, and blame them, before killing them. But the boys had done nothing wrong. Earlier this year, Obama had forced Israel to release terrorists who had killed, from jail for peace. No peace has been forthcoming from those terrorist supporters. One of the boys was a US citizen .. someone Obama has sworn an oath to protect and serve. But instead, the US President has paid US money to support a terrorist administration. Maybe Hamas will deny the activity, they have not yet, instead accusing Israel of overstating the crime. The UN cannot endorse this crime, and if they fail to act on it, they need to be dismantled. 

Three boys kidnapped, tortured and murdered by terrorists. Who dares support that? 

The incident is not isolated in Middle East terrorist history. The second intifada, which began after Bill Clinton embarrassed Arafat over a Monica Special cigar transformed a lynching of two Israeli security detail who had been illegally lured and detained by so called Palestinian authorities. This incident is on a par. A crime against humanity linked by successive Democrat party US Presidents. 
Historical perspective on this day
In 69, Tiberius Julius Alexander ordered his Roman legions in Alexandria to swear allegianceto Vespasian as Emperor. 552, Battle of TaginaeByzantine forces under Narses defeated the Ostrogoths in Italy. During the fightings king Totila was mortally wounded. 1097, Battle of DorylaeumCrusaders led by prince Bohemond of Taranto defeated a Seljuk army led by sultan Kilij Arslan I. 1431, the Battle of La Higueruela took place in Granada, leading to a modest advance of the Kingdom of Castile during the Reconquista.

In 1523, Johann Esch and Heinrich Voes became the first Lutheran martyrs, burned at the stake by Roman Catholic authorities in Brussels. 1569, Union of Lublin: The Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania confirmed a real union; the united country is called the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth or the Republic of Both Nations. 1643, first meeting of the Westminster Assembly, a council of theologians ("divines") and members of the Parliament of England appointed to restructure the Church of England, at Westminster Abbeyin London. 1690, Glorious RevolutionBattle of the Boyne in Ireland (as reckoned under the Julian calendar). 1766, Jean-François de la Barre, a young French nobleman, was torturedand beheaded before his body was burnt on a pyre along with a copy of Voltaire's Dictionnaire philosophique nailed to his torso for the crime of not saluting a Roman Catholic religious procession in AbbevilleFrance. 1770, Lexell's Comet passed closer to the Earth than any other comet in recorded history, approaching to a distance of 0.0146 a.u. 1782, Raid on Lunenburg: American privateers attacked the British settlement of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.

In 1837, a system of civil registration of births, marriages and deaths was established in England and Wales. 1855, signing of the Quinault Treaty: The Quinault and the Quileute ceded their land to the United States. 1858, joint reading of Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace's papers on evolution to the Linnean Society in London. 1862, The Russian State Library was founded as The Library of the Moscow Public Museum. Also 1862, Princess Alice of the United Kingdom, second daughter of Queen Victoria, married Prince Louis of Hesse, the future Louis IV, Grand Duke of Hesse. Also 1862, American Civil War: The Battle of Malvern Hill took place. It is the final battle in the Seven Days Campaign, part of George B. McClellan's Peninsula Campaign. 1863, Keti Koti (Emancipation Day) in Suriname, marked the abolition of slavery by the Netherlands. Also, American Civil War: The Battle of Gettysburgbegan. 1867, the British North America Act of 1867 took effect as the Constitution of Canada, creating the Canadian Confederation and the federal dominion of Canada; Sir John A. Macdonald was sworn in as the first Prime Minister of Canada. This date was commemorated annually in Canada as Canada Day, a national holiday.

In 1870, the United States Department of Justice formally came into existence. 1873, Prince Edward Island joined the Canadian Confederation. 1874, the Sholes and Glidden typewriter, the first commercially successful typewriter, went on sale. 1878, Canada joined the Universal Postal Union. 1879, Charles Taze Russell published the first edition of the religious magazine The Watchtower. 1881, the world's first international telephone call was made between St. Stephen, New Brunswick, Canada, and Calais, Maine, United States. Also 1881, General Order 70, the culmination of the Cardwell and Childers reforms of the British Army, came into effect. 1885, the United States terminated reciprocity and fishery agreement with Canada. 1890, Canada and Bermuda were linked by telegraph cable. 1898, Spanish–American War: The Battle of San Juan Hill was fought in Santiago de Cuba.

In 1903, start of first Tour de France bicycle race. 1908, SOS was adopted as the international distress signal. 1911, Germany despatched the gunship Panther to Morocco, sparking the Agadir Crisis. 1915, Leutnant Kurt Wintgens of the then-named German Fliegertruppe air service achieved the first known aerial victory with a synchronized machine-gun armed fighter plane, the Fokker M.5K/MG Eindecker. 1916, World War IFirst day on the Somme: On the first day of the Ba
          Race to buy $10 billion-valued GLP narrows down to two groups: sources   
SINGAPORE/HONG KONG (Reuters) - The race to buy Global Logistic Properties narrowed to between a Chinese consortium backed by the company's management and a rival group led by Warburg Pincus, sources said, as bidders submitted offers for the $10 billion-valued firm.

          Fri Jun 30th Todays News   
Some things should not happen, but they do. Good news about unemployment should be oxygen for the federal government. Unemployment is down around 5.5%. That should mean that the government will have good returns from income tax and production. There are lots of good things the federal government is doing, but the oxygen thief that is Malcolm Turnbull and his crony mates of Julie Bishop and Christopher Pyne are robbing the government of oxygen. Mr Abbott can help and does. Take an example of a few words Mr Abbott said at a recent IPA event 

"We have an abundance of energy - but the world's highest power prices; an abundance of land - and property prices to rival Hong Kong's; some of the world's smartest people - yet with school rankings behind Kazakhstan.

We need to make Australia work again - because our country, plainly, is not working as it should. We are letting ourselves down. We are not what we should be; and we know it."

Mr Abbott generously gave his time to talk to IPA members, and not just speak his thoughts and run. And Mr Abbott gives oxygen which the government needs. 

In 350, Roman usurper Nepotianus, of the Constantinian dynasty, was defeated and killed in Rome by troops of the usurper Magnentius. Neither reigned long as Constantius II dealt with Magnentius three years later. 763, the Byzantine army of emperor Constantine V defeated the Bulgarian forces in the Battle of Anchialus.1520, Spanish conquistadors led by Hernán Cortés fought their way out of Tenochtitlan. 1559, King Henry II of France was mortally wounded in a jousting match against Gabriel de Montgomery. 1688, the Immortal Seven issue the Invitation to William (continuing the English rebellion from Rome), which would culminate in the Glorious Revolution

In 1934, the Night of the Long KnivesAdolf Hitler's violent purge of his political rivals in Germany, took place. 1936, Emperor Haile Selassie of Abyssinia appealed for aid to the League of Nations against Italy's invasion of his country. 1937, the world's first emergency telephone number999, was introduced in London. 1963, Ciaculli massacre: a car bomb, intended for Mafia boss Salvatore Greco, killed seven police officers and military personnel near Palermo

In 1971, the crew of the Soviet Soyuz 11 spacecraft were killed when their air supply escaped through a faulty valve. It is difficult to overstate the tragedy. The mission to dock with a space station and stay there for weeks was successful. They kept fit on a treadmill twice a day. But on re entry, a pressure valve no one could access was left open in space. They died in seconds on re entry. 

I am very good and don't deserve the abuse given me. I created a video raising awareness of anti police feeling among western communities. I chose the senseless killing of Nicola Cotton, a Louisiana policewoman who joined post Katrina, to highlight the issue. I did this in order to get an income after having been illegally blacklisted from work in NSW for being a whistleblower. I have not done anything wrong. Local council appointees refused to endorse my work, so I did it for free. Youtube's Adsence refused to allow me to profit from their marketing it. Meanwhile, I am hostage to abysmal political leadership and hopeless journalists. My shopfront has opened on Facebook.

Here is a video I made Up Hill

Christina Georgina Rossetti (5 December 1830 -- 29 December 1894) was an English poet who wrote a variety of romantic, devotional, and children's poems. She is best known for her long poem Goblin Market, her love poem Remember, and for the words of the Christmas carol In the Bleak Midwinter.


Related Poem Content Details

Does the road wind up-hill all the way? 
   Yes, to the very end. 
Will the day’s journey take the whole long day? 
   From morn to night, my friend. 

But is there for the night a resting-place? 
   A roof for when the slow dark hours begin. 
May not the darkness hide it from my face? 
   You cannot miss that inn. 

Shall I meet other wayfarers at night? 
   Those who have gone before. 
Then must I knock, or call when just in sight? 
   They will not keep you standing at that door. 

Shall I find comfort, travel-sore and weak? 
   Of labour you shall find the sum. 
Will there be beds for me and all who seek? 
   Yea, beds for all who come.

=== from 2016 ===
 It is possible that the ALP will win the election on Saturday and that should scare people. Because the DelCon movement have advocated splitting the senate vote and sending a message to those remaining idiots who installed Turnbull over Abbott, the senate is likely to be ALP friendly too. Turnbull's foolish decision to go for a double dissolution means that all of Abbott's gains get wiped out. So as a service to the community, The Conservative Voice will list reasons to not vote for the ALP or their proxies who call themselves independents. 
  • The AWU corruption scandal which brought on the double dissolution. Shorten is heavily involved in his time as union leader. Also Fair Work has been set up badly and is not an effective guard. To give the ALP the reigns of power again is to give in to another term of ineffective workplace relations. That will damage Australia badly, crippling her businesses who employ people.
  • Bad for the economy, promising to spend over $120 billion dollars on two policies alone, neither of which are effective. But then promising to balance the budget too. And yet admitting to lying outrageously about Medicare because they feel that is clever politics. 
  • Border Security. ALP have killed people with expensive bad policy.
  • Too close to extremist Muslims, too distant from people who are good.
  • Hostile to church interests, but not a friend to gays either. 
  • NSW Corruption with ICAC still not taking on the majority of corrupt ALP members from their 16 years in power. 
  • Victorian corruption, with jobs for the union mates and the destruction of CFA volunteer firefighters. ALP have killed people with incompetence in recent years. 
  • Queensland corruption and South Australian too, all related to entrenched ALP that are supported by independents. 
For some, at the moment, the Sex Party has more credibility.  
=== from 2015 ===
Greece will default on her repayments today. The left wing Greek Government has promised her people that they can default and stay in the European Union. As if people can work but not be paid, so long as they aren't Greek. And that is wrong. The cost of the lie of the Greek government is a nervous world market which devalues because the stakes are so high. Europe should boot Greece. The campaign against austerity is dangerous and should not be accepted. There will be market pain if Greece leaves the union, but it is nothing to the pain if others feel that austerity can be rejected with impunity.  

Joe Hockey's defamation win is only a slap on the wrist for the partisan media who would willingly cut their own throats to secure a win against conservatives. There was no need for the personal attack of the defamatory headline, but it was made for no other purpose but to attack the treasurer. And if the Fairfax press had any credibility they would pay the money and issue an apology. Instead they are un-penitent and are examining the possibility of appealing. One hopes they appeal and lose badly.
From 2014
The 1876 election had seen the election of GOP Hayes based on a compromise. The military was pulled out of the South, ending reconstruction efforts and toppling state GOP governments. White Democrats would make the south one party and would isolate and prey upon African Americans. But in terms of populism, that was ok. Then James was elected and what followed was to James' credit in 1881, and a tragedy too. James was a GOP man too, but he had better control and discipline than Hayes. James Garfield would reform the US public service and purge corruption from the post office. He appointed african americans to prominent federal positions, promoted civil rights and education as a means to a free and fair electorate. And then, two hundred days into office, he was assassinated by a nut job. 

The nut job was like any other extreme right wing idiot that ever lived. Born in illinois, to an ethnically French family of Huguenot, Guiteau had been given $1000 and instructed to study in New York by his father. He had listening issues, and struggled as a student. He dropped out and joined a religious cult, but struggled to find his place. He went to Boston and got an easily achieved legal license, but was a failure as a barrister, managing to enrage most of his clients. Next, Guiteau turned to theology and stole material from the cult from which he had been booted. Then he decided to support GOP people. He begged Hayes for political favours, and then Garfield. Garfield had opposed corruption. So Guiteau decided to shoot him. 

Guiteau chose a pearl handled revolver for reasons of posterity. He picked his moment, approached Garfield from behind and shot him twice. Garfield would probably have survived but for the medical treatment he received by doctors that had not sterilised their surgery equipment or hands, as would be routine ten years later. It took eleven weeks for Garfield to die. In defence, Guiteau would claim that he was not guilty because "The doctors killed him, I just shot him." The defence failed, and so on this day in 1882, nine months after the shooting, Guiteau was hung. On the morning of his hanging, Guiteau wrote a poem. 

I am going to the Lordy, I am so glad,

I am going to the Lordy, I am so glad,

I am going to the Lordy,

Glory hallelujah! Glory hallelujah!

I am going to the Lordy.

I love the Lordy with all my soul,

Glory hallelujah!

And that is the reason I am going to the Lord,

Glory hallelujah! Glory hallelujah!

I am going to the Lord.

I saved my party and my land,

Glory hallelujah!

But they have murdered me for it,

And that is the reason I am going to the Lordy,

Glory hallelujah! Glory hallelujah!

I am going to the Lordy!

I wonder what I will do when I get to the Lordy,

I guess that I will weep no more

When I get to the Lordy!

Glory hallelujah!

I wonder what I will see when I get to the Lordy,

I expect to see most glorious things,

Beyond all earthly conception

When I am with the Lordy!

Glory hallelujah! Glory hallelujah!

I am with the Lord.

He was the only right wing extremist to assassinate a President of the US. He seemed incapable of rational thought, his application of poetry on a par with another right wing terrorist (McVey) who claimed he was the captain of his soul. Guiteau's case was one of the first attempts at an insanity defence in the US for a high profile case. At nine months he was the longest survivor of an assassination of a US President. 
Historical perspective on this day
In 350, Roman usurper Nepotianus, of the Constantinian dynasty, was defeated and killed in Rome by troops of the usurper Magnentius. 763, the Byzantine army of emperor Constantine V defeated the Bulgarian forces in the Battle of Anchialus. 1422, Battle of Arbedo between the duke of Milan and the Swiss cantons. 1520, Spanish conquistadors led by Hernán Cortésfought their way out of Tenochtitlan. 1521, Spanish forces defeated a combined French and Navarrese army at the Battle of Noáin during the Spanish conquest of Iberian Navarre. 1559, King Henry II of France was mortally wounded in a jousting match against Gabriel de Montgomery. 1651, The DelugeKhmelnytsky Uprising – the Battle of Beresteczko ended with a Polish victory. 1688, the Immortal Seven issue the Invitation to William (continuing the English rebellion from Rome), which would culminate in the Glorious Revolution. 1758, Seven Years' War: The Battle of Domstadtl took place. 1794, Native American forces under Blue Jacket attack Fort Recovery.

In 1805, the U.S. Congress organised the Michigan Territory. 1860, the 1860 Oxford evolution debate at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History took place. 1864, U.S. PresidentAbraham Lincoln granted Yosemite Valley to California for "public use, resort and recreation". 1882, Charles J. Guiteau was hanged in Washington, D.C. for the assassination of U.S. President James Garfield. 1886, the first transcontinental train trip across Canada departed from Montreal. It arrived in Port Moody, British Columbia on July 4. 1892, the Homestead Strike began near PittsburghPennsylvania.

In 1905, Albert Einstein published the article On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies, in which he introduced special relativity. 1906, the United States Congress passed the Meat Inspection Act and Pure Food and Drug Act. 1908, the Tunguska event occurred in remote Siberia. 1912, the Regina Cyclone hit Regina, Saskatchewan, killing 28. It remains Canada's deadliest tornado event. 1917, World War IGreece declared war on the Central Powers. 1921, U.S. President Warren G. Harding appointed former President William Howard Taft Chief Justice of the United States. 1922, in Washington D.C., U.S. Secretary of State Charles Evans Hughes and Dominican Ambassador Francisco J. Peynado signed the Hughes-Peynado agreement, which ended the United States occupation of the Dominican Republic.

In 1934, the Night of the Long KnivesAdolf Hitler's violent purge of his political rivals in Germany, took place. 1936, Emperor Haile Selassie of Abyssinia appealed for aid to the League of Nations against Italy's invasion of his country. 1937, the world's first emergency telephone number999, was introduced in London 1944, World War II: The Battle of Cherbourg ended with the fall of the strategically valuable port to American forces. 1953, the first Chevrolet Corvette rolled off the assembly line in Flint, Michigan. 1956, a TWA Super Constellation and a United Airlines DC-7 collided above the Grand Canyon in Arizona and crashed, killing all 128 on board both airliners. 1960, Congo gained independence from Belgium. 1963, Ciaculli massacre: a car bomb, intended for Mafia boss Salvatore Greco, killed seven police officers and military personnel near Palermo. 1966, the National Organization for Women, the United States' largest feminist organisation, was founded. 1968, Pope Paul VIissued the Credo of the People of God.

In 1971, the crew of the Soviet Soyuz 11 spacecraft were killed when their air supply escaped through a faulty valve. Also 1971, Ohio ratified the 26th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, reducing the voting age to 18, thereby putting the amendment into effect. 1972, the first leap second was added to the UTC time system. 1977, the Southeast Asia Treaty Organizationdisbanded. 1985, thirty-nine American hostages from the hijacked TWA Flight 847 were freed in Beirut after being held for 17 days. 1986, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Bowers v. Hardwick that states could outlaw homosexual acts between consenting adults. 1990, East Germany and West Germany merged their economies. 1997, the United Kingdom transferssovereignty over Hong Kong to the People's Republic of China.
=== Publishing News ===
This column welcomes feedback and criticism. The column is not made up but based on the days events and articles which are then placed in the feed. So they may not have an apparent cohesion they would have had were they made up.
I am publishing a book called Bread of Life: January. 

Bread of Life is a daily bible quote with a layman's understanding of the meaning. I give one quote for each day, and also a series of personal stories illustrating key concepts eg Who is God? What is a miracle? Why is there tragedy?

January is the first of the anticipated year-long work of thirteen books. One for each month and the whole year. It costs to publish. It (Kindle version) should retail at about $2US online, but the paperback version would cost more, according to production cost.
If you have a heart for giving, I fundraise at gofund.me/27tkwuc
Editorials will appear in the "History in a Year by the Conservative Voice" series, starting with AugustSeptemberOctober, or at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/dp/1482020262/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_dVHPub0MQKDZ4  The kindle version is cheaper, but the soft back version allows a free kindle version.

List of available items at Create Space
    Pandora o Netflix al di fuori degli Stati Uniti, ZenMate è la soluzione che fa per te. Per quanto riguarda la privacy, non ci sono mai garanzie assolute, ma puoi stare certo che ZenMate prende la questione molto seriamente. Come minimo, però, è necessario comunicare un proprio indirizzo email.

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    La barra di stato di ZenMate si trova all'angolo in alto a destra della finestra principale di Chrome e diventa verde al momento dell'attivazione. Per configurarlo, basta fare clic sul simbolo dello scudo verde. Un aspetto molto interessante di ZenMate è la possibilità di passare istantaneamente da un paese all'altro. Per impostazione predefinita, il traffico internet viene inizialmente indirizzato in Svizzera, ma è possibile cambiare paese in qualunque momento, passando a un proxy del Regno Unito, degli Stati Uniti, di Hong Kong o della Germania.

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           The Latest: Carrie Lam sworn in as Hong Kong's new leader   
Carrie Lam sworn in as Hong Kong's new leader on the city's 20th anniversary of handover from Britain
           Carrie Lam sworn in as Hong Kong's new leader on the city's 20th anniversary of handover from Britain   
Carrie Lam sworn in as Hong Kong's new leader on the city's 20th anniversary of handover from Britain
           Flags raised marking Hong Kong handover's 20th anniversary   
Flags raised in ceremony marking 20th anniversary of Hong Kong handover from Britain
          Flags raised marking Hong Kong handover’s 20th anniversary   

The flags of China and Hong Kong have been raised in a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of Chinese rule over Hong Kong.

The post Flags raised marking Hong Kong handover’s 20th anniversary appeared first on The Financial Express.

          'It's now life or death' Pink dolphin vanishing fast as numbers PLUNGE    

THE iconic pink dolphin that became Hong Kong’s mascot when Britain handed the colony back to China is vanishing fast.
          What Asia learned from its financial crisis 20 years ago   

MUSEUM SIAM in Bangkok is dedicated to exploring all things Thai. Until July 2nd, that includes an exhibition on the Asian financial crisis, which began on that date 20 years ago, when the Thai baht lost its peg with the dollar. The exhibition features two seesaws, showing how many baht were required to balance one dollar, both before the crisis (25) and after (over 50 at one point). Visitors can also read the testimony of some of the victims, including a high-flying stockbroker who was reduced to selling sandwiches, and a businesswoman whose boss told her to “take care of the work for me” before hanging himself. (In Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea, 10,400 people killed themselves as a result of the crisis, according to subsequent research.) In Thailand the financial calamity became known as the tom yum kung crisis, after the local hot-and-sour soup, presumably because it was such a bitter and searing experience.

The exhibition’s subtitle, “Lessons (Un)learned”, seems unfair. The victims of the crisis (Thailand, South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia and Hong Kong) took many lessons to heart. With the exception of Hong Kong, they no longer rely on a hard peg to the dollar to anchor inflation, giving their currencies more room to move. (The sandwich vendor’s chosen logo for his new business was a...

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Long-admired Singapore Model Loses Luster for Chinese Government Amid Rifts and China’s Rise
By Bai Tiantian
Global Times
2017/6/29 18:38:40

A more confident China sends fewer officials to Singapore for governance training

○ Some have speculated Sino-Singaporean relations are worsening as Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was absent from the Belt and Road forum in Beijing last month

○ The long-held trust between Beijing and Singapore has been compromised in recent years over South China Sea divergences

○ China used to take inspiration from the "Singapore model," but that influence is waning. Fewer officials are being sent to Singapore to attend governance training classes

People gather at Singapore's landmark tourist attraction Gardens by the Bay. Photo: CFP

For years, China and Singapore shared a special bond.

Beijing has long been obsessed with what it calls the Singapore model, praising the city state's success in maintaining single-party rule, a relatively uncorrupt government and a robust and inclusive economy.

The bond was initially nurtured by China's Deng Xiaoping and Singapore's Lee Kuan Yew in the 1970s but even after Lee's death in March 2015, the infatuation continued.

In late 2015, Singapore hosted the first meeting between the leaders of the Chinese mainland and Taiwan in decades. The historic event demonstrated Singapore's unique influence across the Taiwan Straits that no other country can claim.

However, lately that special bond appears to be fading away.

Since 2016, Singapore has found itself caught up in the South China Sea disputes between China and its fellow ASEAN nations, even though the Lion City itself is not a claimant.

Frictions grew in late 2016 after Hong Kong seized nine Singaporean armored vehicles in transit on their way home from Taiwan. Although the diplomatic row was smoothened after Hong Kong agreed to return the armored vehicles in January this year, the event triggered discussions in the media over what has gone wrong in ties.

Whispers of worsening relations grew louder with Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's notable absence from the Belt and Road forum in Beijing last month, China's biggest diplomatic event of the year. A majority of ASEAN leaders, including Indonesian President Joko Widodo and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, Singapore's two neighbors, attended the forum.

"There used to be a greater depth of mutual understanding between China and Singapore but now that kind of understanding is gradually being lost," Zhuang Guotu, head of the Center of Southeast Asian Studies at Xiamen University, told the Global Times.

"Don't get it wrong. China's relation with Singapore is still better than many other bilateral ties. The ethnic and cultural bonds as well as economic ties between the two countries remain strong. But as China's influence grows, Beijing expects to be treated accordingly, and Singapore is struggling to adapt to that change," Zhuang said.

Misjudged moves

Ruan Zongze, vice president of the China Institute of International Studies, said both countries have viewed their bilateral ties idealistically.

"Sino-Singaporean relations have always been special. Singapore played a unique role in China's reform and opening-up. Chinese people have always had a great affinity for Singapore given that the country is the only overseas Chinese-majority society. At the same time Singapore knew it had a special influence on China and intended to use it to boost its status as a mediator," Ruan told the Global Times.

But Sino-Singaporean relations began to plunge in 2016, after the arbitration court at The Hague ruled in favor of the Philippines in a South China Sea dispute case.

Because of its special relationship with Singapore and their common cultural heritage, China naturally held great hopes for Singapore to convey its views within ASEAN but was irked to find out that Singapore openly voiced its support of the arbitration ruling and later tried to mobilize pressure against China by attempting to include the ruling in the final document of the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Venezuela in September.

Both these diplomatic moves were perceived by Beijing as demonstrating the country's alignment with the US despite Singapore's traditional stance of not taking sides between great powers. The long-held trust between Beijing and Singapore has thus been compromised.

Analysts suggest Lee Hsien Loong has misjudged how much importance China attaches to the South China Sea and believe that these incidents could prompt Beijing to adjust its ties with Singapore, seeking partners with other ASEAN states.

"China should normalize its ties with Singapore by eliminating all idealistic expectations. Both countries should return to geopolitical realities, which is that the two countries share common interests but also face considerable divergences," Ruan said.

Lost inspiration

As ties plunge, questions have also been raised over whether China still needs to look at Singapore as a role model.

China's fascination with Singapore's political system started in 1978 during top leader Deng Xiaoping's first official visit to the city state. Harvard scholar Ezra Vogel wrote in his book Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China that during the trip, Deng and Lee Kuan Yew forged a special relationship and although Deng had not yet decided what policies to pursue in China at the time, "Singapore helped strengthen his conviction of the need for fundamental reforms."

On his southern tour in 1992, Deng famously said China should learn from the city state's experience and eventually overtake it. The statement triggered great interest in Singapore's governance model among Chinese academics and officials.

Throughout the years, China has been fascinated by Singapore's success in achieving advanced economic industrialization without undergoing substantial political liberalization. Chinese observers have also viewed Singapore as an example that Asian culture, especially Confucianism, can provide an alternative to Western democracy.

Since the 1990s, some 50,000 Chinese officials have studied in Singapore, Singaporean President Tan Keng Yam said during a visit to China in 2015. Singapore's Nanyang Technological University has created a program especially tailored to Chinese officials, which is commonly known as the "mayors' class."

However, analysts have told the Global Times that the number of Chinese officials studying in Singapore has been declining in recent years.

Zhu Lijia, a professor of public management at the Chinese Academy of Governance, said one reason is that China has greatly improved its own training capabilities and shifted much of the task of training its officials to domestic Party schools and socialist institutes.

"It not just Singapore, the number of officials studying in the US and the UK has also been declining. We have many scholars returning from overseas institutions who are perfectly capable of introducing foreign experience to officials at home," Zhu told the Global Times.

But the core reason, he said, is China's growing confidence in charting its own course of development.

"China has progressed and matured in summarizing its own experience. Singapore's experience inspired China decades ago but it is no longer suitable for a country so vast, populated and infinitely more complicated in social and economic issues," Zhu said.

His opinion was echoed by Zhuang, who said China has developed its own governance model and the role of the Singapore model has been greatly weakened.

Positive signs

Despite frictions putting a dark cloud over ties, lately there have been positive signs in the relationship.

On Tuesday, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang accepted an invitation from Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to make an official visit to the country, the Straits Times reported.

In an interview earlier this month, Singaporean Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan said Singapore is a "strong supporter" of China's Belt and Road initiative, defusing speculation that the country may be less than supportive of China's plan.

Both developments came as the South China Sea disputes subsided this year with China and the ASEAN member states signing a code of conduct framework document in May.

Analysts said the premier's visit to Singapore could herald an improvement in ties as both sides acknowledge the importance of putting aside differences and getting back to good ties.

They noted that Singapore may well find itself caught in escalating rivalries between China and the US and it will have to tread between the two powers with greater diplomatic dexterity.

Zhuang said Singapore often keeps its distance from China to avoid being seen as too pro-Chinese in front of the other ASEAN members.

"Singapore should understand the importance of not making trouble for China in what Beijing sees as core issues. China does not want Singapore's unconditional support. The latter is hegemony and not in line with China's long-term interests," Zhuang said.

 "As for China, a growing power should prepare itself for diverging opinions. The country should understand that it is not necessarily a good thing for all its neighbors to sing China's praises," Zhuang noted.

          [VIDEO] Hong Kong’s PLA Garrison Stages Biggest Military Parade in 20 Years as Xi Jinping Inspects Troops    
President Xi Jinping today inspected 20 squads of the People’s Liberation Army garrison in Hong Kong at the biggest military parade since the city’s handover to China – marking 20 years since the army was first stationed here in 1997. Xi Asserts Authority in Hong Kong HONG KONG (AP) — Chinese President Xi Jinping inspected […]
          Hong Kong was supposed to be a world financial capital in a communist system. Contradiction?   

From the beginning, the idea that capitalist Hong Kong could remain a thriving, prosperous city under Communist China may have been a tale doomed to an unhappy ending.

But as this city marks the 20th anniversary of its return to China’s control after 156 years of rule by Britain, it is beset by...

I Am a Fucking Plagiarist by Javier Grillo-Marxuach
February 26th, 2015 RESET - +
Art is theft.

— Pablo Picasso

BEFORE I HAD anything to say, I had the desire to say something.

No, let me revise that. I had the desire to be heard.

A family legend is that at the age of three I leaped on stage during my brother’s Christmas pageant at his elementary school and launched into an extemporaneous monologue in which I apparently demanded that the audience answer for being in “my mother’s house.” It was my very own toddlerized version of that Dean Martin bit where he steps up to the mic, starts at the sight of the audience, and asks, “How’d you all get in here?”

My God. Even at three I was a plagiarist.

Plagiarism is basic to all culture.— Pete Seeger

Plagiarist. The word is a snake. Writers loathe its greasy venom. All our worst nightmares begin with the accusation of plagiarism. Why? Because it impugns the myth that we are “original” and therefore “special” and “different.” But, even worse, “plagiarist” lives next -door to the accusation we most suspect to be truth: “fraud.”

To further torture the metaphor, “fraud” is a crack house — an urban blight easily cast out because it exists at an extreme so far from most people’s experience. You can always say: “That’s not me, I’m not an addict and a criminal,” and, as long as your shoes, clothes, and teeth are passable, have some benefit of the doubt.

“Plagiarist,” however, is the lawyer’s mansion with the obsessive-compulsively manicured lawn, mirrored hardwood floors, and massive library. “Plagiarist” is a rich and burnished space of unlimited resources, where a methodical investigator — a latter-day George Smiley — has made his fortune exposing everyone else. It’s only a matter of time before he turns his unblinking sight on you.

And the insidiously magnificent thing about the word “plagiarist” — as opposed to, say, “plagiarizer” — is the sinister double implication of mastery and serial offense. There’s something about that -ist at the end. It tops the injury of the accusation off with the insult of “and these are just the ones we’ve caught … but we’re on to you now.”

To this day I suspect, in the darkest corners of my guilty soul, that the cottage industry of quotes from famous writers and intellectuals endorsing some form of theft as the only way to evolve the culture is little else than a great, collective, preemptive strike. I’m reminded of the greatest, and most frequently ignored, truth in the PR business: “Go ugly early.”

“Go ugly early” basically means “Own it before they catch you.”

For example: had Bill Clinton admitted to his infidelities before the media caught on — the strategy goes — the scandal would have been short-circuited by blunt and factual admission. Tawdry speculation dies when perpetrators shine a harsh, specular light on their unpleasant truths and take responsibility.

There’s “plagiarists” and there’s “fucking plagiarists.” The former plagiarize by accident — or at least claim to with plausible deniability — they forgot they heard or read something somewhere and mistook the idea for their own, or skipped a footnote, or maybe they just had the same idea as someone else and are the unwitting victims of fate, and that’s their story, and they are sticking to it. The latter did it on purpose, they know damned well they did it, and they’ll deploy all the same arguments as the former to make sure you never know it.

Of course, not everyone gets away with it.

For the fucking plagiarist, the “early” in “Go ugly early” means “any time before someone else busts you.” Hence, I believe, all the quotes. The more flowery your defense of your own plagiarism before the truth comes out, the better. The more flowery your defense after, the more you come off looking like a fucking douche.

It’s all in the timing, you see.

Our souls as well as our bodies are composed of individual elements which were all already present in the ranks of our ancestors. The “newness” in the individual psyche is an endlessly varied recombination of age-old components.

— Carl Jung

Twelve years after the “Dean Martin incident,” I was a sophomore in high school. Bringing Great Honor to my people (a line I just stole from Mark Leyner’s bio page in his novel My Cousin, My Gastroenterologist), I was also co-founder and president of “Lunchbox Theater.” Tired of not being cast in our high school drama team productions by a faculty coach who hated the smug sight of me, I worked with another student on the idea of a side project for the school’s drama team.

(Her name was Stacie Ressler, and to this day she’d probably tell you I never gave her enough credit for our joint venture.)

The idea? We would write and perform short plays during the lunch recess, thus giving students the ability to, well … be heard.

Taking the sum of our ideas home, I quickly typed a proposal on my mother’s Royal typewriter, waved it in front of the drama coach’s face, and — based on her most cursory and dismissive wave-off of tentative approval — scheduled a meeting with the school principal to get permission to launch the project.

The meeting with the principal went like gangbusters. By the time our drama coach — a gloriously overworked sexagenarian with a vindictive streak mitigated by her rapidly eroding memory — realized what was going on, our first play, written by yours truly, was in production and the posters announcing the premiere were up in the school hallways.

Score one for the rebels.

This first play was called “Flicks” — and fitting for someone too young to have anything to say — it was about a movie mogul whose work was constantly interrupted by assorted caricatures of “industry types” inasmuch as I understood them. It was essentially a 10-minute vignette of even shorter vignettes taken from my impression of how Hollywood “worked” based on my obsessive viewing of the then-nascent Entertainment Tonight.

To everyone’s surprise but mine (my attempts at publicity included physically pulling people from the school hallway into the auditorium), “Flicks” attracted something of an audience. The smattering of applause we received was ultimate confirmation that my end run around our tyrannical drama coach had been a righteous move. It was also my first taste of that most addicting of sensations — the dragon everyone who puts pen to paper is chasing even if they want you to believe otherwise.

I had been heard.

I was also immediately overtaken by a sense of abject dread. Later in life, as a working television writer, I would come to understand that tensing of the chest as pretty much the normal state of my screenwriting brethren. This was our first show. We had committed to doing one of these plays every other week.

What were we going to do for an encore?

Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is nonexistent.

— Jim Jarmusch

At the end of my junior year, I stepped down from the Lunchbox troupe’s leadership and settled into an emeritus role: producing and directing as many short plays as I could write. I could no longer pretend to be an outcast malcontent. I had become a generally popular member of the student body, the co-creator of a popular theater program, and pulling double duty as features editor of the school paper.

Even better, our new drama coach turned out to be an extraordinarily supportive mentor with a remarkable way of simultaneously encouraging me, giving me enough rope to hang myself, and calling me out on my general stupidity and arrogance.

I even went on a few dates and acquired written proof that at least one girl at the school found me “very handsome.”

By the time Huron High School released me, Lunchbox Theater had become an institution that would go on for almost a decade and a half after my graduation, and the yearly “Lunchbox Theater Festival” — which I had inaugurated after our second year — had become something of a highlight of the school year.

Moreover, other teachers started to pay attention to our little island of misfit toys … one of them was impressed enough by my leadership and the sheer volume of my output to nominate me for a scholarship from the National Council of Teachers of English. Another one of my teachers wrote a college letter of recommendation I aspire to live up to pretty much every day.

The xeroxed 8.5-by-11” posters of my accomplishments hung proudly on my childhood bedroom wall alongside posters for Lucas and Spielberg films. The titles of my plays were as silly as adolescence: “Flicks,” “Suburban Life,” “Table Talk,” “The Incredible Frampster,” “King Rex,” “Son of Rex,” “The Date,” “The Incredible Adventures of the Intrepid Teddy Potsdorf,” “Son of the Incredible Adventures of the Intrepid Teddy Potsdorf.”

Out of that collection, point your attention to title number two: “Table Talk.”

That’s my original sin. The act of plagiarism that defines my self-concept to this day. It is the smoking gun whose discovery I have spent three decades fearing.

I don’t think that you saw me do those jokes and said, “I’m going to tell those jokes, too.” I don’t think there’s a world where you’re that stupid. Or that bad a guy. […] I do think, though, that you’re like […] a rocket […] and your engines are sucking stuff up. Stuff is getting sucked up in your engines, like birds and bugs and some of my jokes. I think you saw me do them. I know you saw me do them, and I think they just went in your brain, and I don’t think you meant to do it, but I don’t think you stopped yourself either.

— “Louie” to “Dane Cook” fictionally addressing real-world accusations of plagiarism of Louis CK’s material by Cook. From the episode “Oh Louie/Tickets” of Louie

These are the facts:

On May 15 of 1982, the third-to-last sketch of Saturday Night Live was a two-hander entitled “Table Talk.”

The premise: cast member Tony Rosato played a rough-around-the-edges vulgarian food critic using a first-person, break-the-fourth-wall monologue to teach the audience how to defraud good restaurants of their wine. A less-than-competent waiter served as his foil. The sketch ended with Rosato telling the audience to tune in next week when he would teach them how to “stuff an entire salad bar into a doggie bag.”

Sometime in 1986, I wrote a short play about a stuck-up, manners-obsessed restaurant critic using a first-person, break-the-fourth-wall monologue to teach the audience the make-up of a perfect meal and the way a proper restaurant ought to go about serving it. The critic’s monologue was continually interrupted by such digressions as a noisy family with children, a tacky lounge singer on a date with a cheesy divorcée, and a Cuban hijacker with multiple personality disorder bent on redirecting the restaurant to Havana. An incompetent waiter and grotesquely stereotypical French maître d’ — who was more than a little derivative of John Cleese in Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life — served as his foils.

“Table Talk” was performed three times by Lunchbox Theater: it premiered during a lunchtime recess in the fall semester and was subsequently revived as a curtain-raiser for the drama team’s spring production, and for the year-end festival. During my freshman year at Carnegie Mellon University, I convinced the extracurricular drama club to perform the play in one of the school’s restaurants.

“Table Talk” had its swan song in 1992 when the Flaming Gorilla Company — a troupe I formed with my friends to perform new work during the summers between college semesters — decided to go out with a bang by making our last-ever production a charity event/nostalgia fest for our high school theater company: “The Original Lunchbox Theater Festival.”

By the time this final production came around, “Table Talk” had metastasized to include the scene-stealing addition of an explosively flatulent restaurant patron.

Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different. The good poet welds his theft into a whole of feeling which is unique, utterly different from that from which it was torn; the bad poet throws it into something which has no cohesion.

— T. S. Eliot

I have a great memory — maybe not photographic, but definitely classical realist. I can’t tell you with a straight face that I didn’t remember I hadn’t seen the SNL sketch when I sat down to write my “Table Talk” on that Royal typewriter at two in the morning on a dateless Friday night. That would be a lie.

Yes. I knew it. It’s why I went out of my way to write something radically different. I even considered changing the title to “Dinner Mints” because I realized in the forefront of my mind that, while I found the alliterative title positively beguiling, it would — quite rightfully — raise the dreaded specter of plagiarism.

To this day, I wish I had. I also wonder if I would be a different person for it.

The one thing I can’t figure out no matter how hard I rack my brain is whether I was a dumb kid who just sort of figured “who the hell has ever heard of this Saturday Night Live show anyway,” or whether I believed that I had changed so much of the structure and content of what I had seen that I convinced myself the title wasn’t going to matter …

Or whether I perversely reasoned that I had earned the right to keep the title because I had made so many “improvements” on the concept.

There are dark places in the mind that stubbornly resist the effort to excavate the irritating artifact whose removal will provide relief. Or maybe it’s just that there is no artifact and no relief is possible.

Maybe I just wanted to be heard.

I do know this: after the play went up for the first time, a girl on whom I harbored a massive crush asked me if I had ever seen a similarly themed sketch on Saturday Night Live a few years before. I denied all knowledge.

Before that, when my friends would call me out on quoting Monty Python or SCTV too liberally — which, by the way, was invariably — or whether I had invented my superhero “Galactic Cow” in the sixth grade not just out of a bovine obsession born of multiple childhood trips to my great uncle Vicente’s dairy farm, but also a misguided admiration of the Ted Knight sitcom Too Close for Comfort, I would generally sheepishly cop to it and go on my way without much moral injury. But this was somehow different. Nixonian levels of denial were the only way to go.

Frankly, I wish I had admitted to it and either retitled or withdrawn the play altogether, because I now believe it was at that moment — and not when I conceived of the possibility of making a thing taking themes from a sketch I had seen on a show one time — that I truly shamed myself.

I was a plagiarist already — but that’s the moment I became a fucking plagiarist.

All writing is in fact cut-ups. A collage of words read heard overheard. What else?

— William S. Burroughs

In the mid-aughts, then–Harvard sophomore Kaavya Viswanathan received what was widely reported as a half-million-dollar-plus contract for a novel she wrote in high school — How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild, and Got a Life — and a projected sequel. The real-life story was sensational headline-bait: a high-achieving young woman of color writing an exceptional book about her coming-of-age experiences and getting richly rewarded for her hard work.

High-profile agents at William Morris and a movie deal followed.

Until the entire shitbox came crashing down when it was revealed that many passages of Viswanathan’s book bore a striking resemblance to the work of well-established and respected YA novelist Megan McCafferty.

Several excruciating months of accusations, denials, and outright class warfare followed. The color of her skin aside, Viswanathan’s “superhero origin story” was chock-full of signifiers of wealth and privilege: her parents, both physicians, had spent thousands to hire an “admissions coach” to help her get into Harvard, and it was this person who first recognized her literary genius. Cowed resignation followed, Viswanathan was duly, and — my waggish tone notwithstanding — rightfully, shamed.

Her book was pulled from the shelves and pulped.

By the time the dust settled and all the online and mainstream media outlets had their way with the carcass, Viswanathan had been proven beyond the shadow of a doubt to have not only lifted passages from McCafferty’s novels Sloppy Firsts and Second Helpings, but also from Meg Cabot’s The Princess Diaries, Tanuja Desai Hidier’s Born Confused, Sophie Kinsella’s Can You Keep a Secret?, and even Salman Rushdie’s Haroun and the Sea of Stories. The Collective Detective — that legion of crime-busting journalists professional and amateur, armed with Google, PDFs, searchable ebook editions of the Western canon — had judged her not just a plagiarist, but a fucking plagiarist.

In her own defense, Viswanathan claimed that, yes, she had read those books, but that as she wrote her novel, she truly believed that she was writing her own voice and experience. Further along the line, she also explained that — because she does in fact have a photographic memory — it was quite possible that, in the rush of creation, her prodigious mental capacity did too good a job of transposing her experience of reading into those places where the words corresponded to her experience of life.

While calling “bullshit” may seem to be the only reasonable response to Viswanathan’s protestation — followed by a snide comment about how, even in contrition, Viswanathan just couldn’t stop herself from bragging about her prodigious gifts — I must admit I don’t find it entirely implausible.

When I was in the ninth grade, a substitute music teacher suggested to our choir that the way to “get good” at anything creative was to mimic the work of the masters. He even gave the example of how, when he was our age and learning his craft, he played his clarinet along to Benny Goodman records — matching Goodman note for note — until he achieved proficiency.

Now, I’d love to sell you on the notion that my “misunderstanding” of this kind man’s generous advice is what led to my own crimes — or that it in some way exonerates Viswanathan — but that would be unfair to him, and would let everyone off the hook way too easily. No, I need his words to make another point entirely that does not exonerate me in any way, but rather to ask a question …

How does a zygotic writer “play along to Benny Goodman?”

Around the same time as the Viswanathan scandal, another writer — Cassandra Clare — emerged from a shit storm of often scathing online criticism to publish her first novel, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. Clare’s previous incarnation had been as a popular writer of Harry Potter fan fiction. Like much other fanfic, her work was chock-full of “meta” in the form of lines of dialogue and plot points referencing other fantasy properties.

In Clare’s case, the Collective Detective appeared to be convinced that her fan fiction lifted the form and structure of an entire chapter from another fantasy novel for her own uses as well. Unlike Viswanathan, Clare answered her critics early and often — claiming that the echoes of the work of others in hers were an act of homage on her part. To the many who vociferously continue to make the detracting case online, Clare’s fanfic committed acts of straight-up plagiarism. To her, and her defenders, it simply did what is an essential component of fanfic: to conflate, aggregate, and flatter its influences through quotation.

Clare had the last laugh on her online critics. Her book series — which is unrelated to her Harry Potter fan fiction other than in being a fantasy portrayal of young people grappling with their entrance into a “hero’s journey” paradigm of magic and questing — has become a publishing phenomenon. Multiple sequels, prequels and equals — as well as a movie — followed. A TV series is currently in the works.

Viswanathan went on to law school, where she excelled academically, landed an enviable summer associate position, and presumably continues to flourish. A tragic footnote to her journey is that when her parents perished in an airplane crash in 2011, the story gained some news-cycle traction because of her notoriety.

Do a Google search and imagine yourself in the shoes of someone whose mother’s and father’s sudden and horrible passing at a young age (both were early fifties) was widely reported as the death of the parents of Harvard plagiarist Kaavya Viswanathan.

People are always talking about originality, but what do they mean? As soon as we are born, the world begins to work upon us, and this goes on to the end. What can we call our own except energy, strength, and will? If I could give an account of all that I owe to great predecessors and contemporaries, there would be but a small balance in my favor.

— Goethe

I followed the Viswanathan plagiarism scandal with great interest, and great dread.

As the Collective Detective pulled apart Viswanathan’s novel, finding all of her legitimate lifts from other authors, I couldn’t help but ask myself a question. What young person’s creative work — even one without such flagrant steals — could possibly hide its influences against that level of fine-toothed scrutiny?

Between high school and college, I wrote or co-wrote some 26 pieces for the stage including one-acts, a full-length play, and the book for a musical. I wrote a weekly column for my college paper, and occasionally contributed movie reviews and an additional editorial column. I even sent back dispatches from a semester in London. I also performed two one-man monologue shows. How is that level of output not going to, in some way, reflect every idea that came over the transom?

Hell, my entire adolescent psyche was an act of intellectual plagiarism made in rehearsal for something that would eventually become an adult life — and I dare you, dear reader, to claim that anything you did in your formative years was anything different.

If you read my journals, you will find a boy who was certain that he would spend a lifetime upholding the undeniable and enduring value of post-structuralism by way of Eco and Baudrillard … followed by the undeniable and enduring value of Sartrean Existentialism … and then Camusian Existentialism, and then Brechtian Marxism vis-à-vis the theater audience as a metaphor for humanity at large, and then Liberation Theology, and then Ayn Randian Objectivism, and — by the end of my senior year of college — morose and resigned Orwellian truth-telling socialism.

I was playing along with Benny Goodman, and the varied institutions responsible for my growth and development threw Benny Goodmans at me as fast as I could listen to their LPs.

Unlike Viswanathan, I had the good fortune of not having anything I wrote mistaken for mature professional work and bought for a fortune. I had the lucky break of not being covered as a phenom by the world press. I had the privilege of not being the voice of my race, class, or generation in any way whatsoever. What I was given was space to experiment, and — most importantly — fail.

Which I did. Often.

I was also lucky for the tutelage of a legion of patient teachers and peers who sometimes by honest criticism and guidance, and others by open derision, forced me to find my own voice as opposed to borrowing those of others. Or at least borrowing without citing.

That’s right. Somewhere in that unconscionably protracted period of gestation, even this slow learner caught on to that truth to which the entire world expects all true writers to be born — because it’s clearly a one-strike-and-you’re-out offense.

“Thou shalt not be a fucking plagiarist.”

It was for the best that it took so long for me to learn this lesson, and even longer to gain some proficiency and become a professional in my field. As any legitimate prodigy will tell you — accused beneficiary of “nepotism” Lena Dunham comes to mind — being anointed “child genius” and given a showy and much-publicized financial boon for preternaturally brilliant work is the world’s biggest “kick me” sign. Few are hated more than the young, gifted, and perceived as unfairly munificent.

And woe betide the ones lacking the cunning to cover their sins adequately, because these days, the judges, juries, and executioners all have Google.

As for Cassandra Clare, if she did, in fact commit acts beyond mere homage, they all took place in the gray-market world of fanfic, which is not for profit, not covered by mainstream media, and has only recently led a very selected few to mass-market glory (as evidenced by E. L. James, who pioneered her blockbusting Fifty Shades of Grey series as Twilight fanfic, and Clare herself).

The difference between plagiarism and fucking plagiarism, it seems, has as much to do with context, intent, venue, and — some would say most importantly — the material gains, as it does the act itself.

Though Clare suffered a great deal of madness, rage, and abuse from a large segment of the Harry Potter online fan community, she wasn’t exposed to the world at large by journalists, nor was she publicly stripped of her contracts, and labeled a plagiarist by The New York Times and others to the point where the indictment would go so far as become the lede in the story of her parents’ death. Clare did, apparently, change the spelling of her last name from “Claire” and deleted her fanfic from the web, presumably in order to avoid lingering associations between her “profic” career and the controversies of her previous incarnation.

Clare was smart, or lucky — or both, or neither — to do all her throat-clearing, rehearsals for prolificity, and playing along with Benny Goodman in a world where the watchers are limited to fandom, the financial stakes don’t get you labeled the Mozart of the YA world and put a target on your back, and — at the end of the day — you are still playing in someone else’s sandbox and are not liable unless you turn a profit without permission. It wasn’t until she had earned her thick hide — and, presumably, the ability to mask her influences appropriately — that Clare moved into the mainstream world of Urban Fantasy. Whatever she did or didn’t do took place during a productive but still gestational moment in her writing career.

Of course these are all excuses. Nothing exonerates me for “Table Talk.”

I am still a fucking plagiarist.

If you steal from one author, it’s plagiarism; if you steal from many, it’s research.

— Wilson Mizner

Plagiarism may be the only crime in which the cover-up ultimately generates far more profit for the perpetrator than the stolen object.

One of the more interesting aspects of getting my start as a television writer in the pre–Second Golden Era TV of the 1990s was getting to work with a number of people who had cut their teeth back when television was REALLY disreputable: the 1970s and ’80s.

Aside from getting the general impression that TV in the ’80s was essentially Mad Men with cocaine, I found many of my superiors to have a very interesting attitude toward … well, if not plagiarism, at least appropriation.

Among the older generation of executive and co-executive producers, the guys who had worked for Stephen J. Cannell, Glen Larson, and their ilk, the running joke was “television is the original derivative medium.”

Among the younger writer/producers occupying mid-level positions ­­— the people with whom a rookie writer like myself had the most contact — there was a general disdain for the old guard. Many of these upstarts, who later did, in fact, help bring about the current Golden Age, saw themselves as renegades eager to wrest TV from thieving forebears.

A great deal of their contempt found voice in accusations of plagiarism and fraud. The most salient accusation was always thrown at “this guy who worked at Cannell.”

To this day, no one has conclusively told me who “this guy” was, even though I have heard the story told several times. I sometimes wonder if “this guy who worked at Cannell” was the TV equivalent of “this girl I met at summer camp.”

Anyway, “this guy” was legendary for setting up his 22-episode seasons of television by writing on a white board a list of all the classic films he wanted to rip off that year and handing out the titles as assignments to his staff.

Of course, the guys who told the story about “this guy who worked at Cannell” always portrayed themselves as shocked and horrified by the blatant plagiarism. At the same time, they gladly took the paycheck to write “the Die Hard episode” or “the Rashomon episode,” and, of course, the hardy perennial, “The Most Dangerous Game episode.” God knows I have.

One thing was always clear — even if on occasion we in the rank and file are forced to do the bidding of a hack showrunner who has no scruples about being a fucking plagiarist — those of us who tell the story of “this guy” are never the hacks or the thieves. That’s the point of the tale. It’s a totemic object of immunity, like on Survivor. The dishy tale of “this guy” is a shibboleth that alights to others that we too are in the fraternity of Those Who Know Better.

That’s why it’s always someone else. That’s why it’s “this guy who worked at Cannell.” We’re not the thieves. We are the ones who are self-aware and self-referential. We’re the ones who excoriate the thieves and occasionally bear with gritted teeth the stark and unpleasant necessities of our trade. We are the ones who say clever things in the writers room like “yes, you’ve seen it before, but not with these actors” and “that idea is so brilliant I have NO choice but to steal it and claim it for my own” while we bide our time until we can call the shots and chisel True Original Stories from the living rock of our beloved medium.

Inside every writer lives the fantasy that our worst and most derivative work is the result of someone else’s influence. Happenstance may occasionally make plagiarists out of us … but we sure as shit ain’t fucking plagiarists.

It’s not where you take things from — it’s where you take them to.

— Jean-Luc Godard

I will always remember my first year in TV as the one in which not one but three major network television shows flagrantly ripped off John Carpenter’s The Thing.

The venerable The X-Files — currently, though erroneously, thought to be above such shenanigans — even went as far as to stage their episodic riff on Carpenter’s paranoid tale of serial possession by an alien parasite found in the ice near a desolate arctic ice station in … well … an arctic ice station.

They even titled the episode “Ice.”

Coming in second was seaQuest DSV and … well … that program actually ripped off The Thing twice in the same season. Apparently, the series’s warring showrunners each had the same brainstorm individually, and then refused to budge on who would withdraw the script written without the other’s knowledge. In one, the cause of the possession of successive crew members was a helmet from the lost continent of Atlantis, in the other, an ancient chest found in an undersea mining colony.

Coming in third was Earth 2, which substituted an alien parasite found in the ice for … well, an alien parasite found in the ice.

The ugly truth of the matter is this: as respectable as television may have become in the last 20 years, showrunners still have to produce a fuckton of hours of entertainment. When the beast must be fed at regular intervals on pain of death, the real test of originality is how far you can stretch the trope until it’s no longer recognizable as the trope — preferably while finding some sort of resonant human context to which a broadcast audience of millions of all races, creeds, and colors can relate.

When a show becomes popular and produces 22 hours a year — for many years — those who love the show ultimately remember the characters, the great moments they shared, and the few truly standout stories in the overall narrative miasma. Few of the fans — even at their most obsessive-compulsive — actually remember that the individual story of the episode in which their beloved weekly visitors first kissed, or had some other such watershed moment, was probably something as hackneyed as the “Most Dangerous Game episode.”

The amusing truth of the matter is this: often — especially in a mature career in a medium with six decades of mass visibility — you will hear a pitch that is derivative of something that was, itself, derivative of something else that the pitcher is not aware of. More than once I have heard a younger writer say, “Do you remember that old episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation where Riker passes out in the teaser and wakes up 16 years later as captain of the Enterprise, but he can’t remember anything … and he cleverly realizes that his amnesia is really a Romulan ruse to get him to give up sensitive information?” only to be shocked when told, “Yeah, it was a takeoff from an even older James Garner movie — based on a Roald Dahl short story — where he’s an Allied spy who passes out before the D-Day invasion, wakes up in a U.S. Army Hospital six years later, and can’t remember anything, then cleverly realizes that his amnesia is a German ruse to extract from him the location of the invasion.”

Derivation is the air we breathe.

And yet there’s “Table Talk.”

We live among ideas much more than we live in nature.

— Saul Bellow

As I walked off the Emmy stage into the dark backstage of the Shrine Auditorium with the cast of Lost and my fellow writer/producers after earning the award for Best Drama, I entertained the thought of how quickly and easily all of this could be taken away from me if anyone found out — and decided to make a Viswanathanian stink about — “Table Talk.”

It wasn’t anomalous for me to entertain that thought at the time. I have dined with that unwelcome guest on the average of three to six times a day, every day, for the past thirty years (alongside other, better known, hits from the depressives’ jukebox, including the classics “I hate myself and I want to die” and “oh God, oh God, why was I born such a revolting troll?”).

Tick-tock-tick-tock-Table-Talk. Tick-tock-tick-tock-Table-Talk.

“Table Talk” was produced at my university. Even if it was extracurricular — for no school grade or profit — the production was funded by a student activities fee levied on every one of the school’s attendees. How do I know the administration won’t take back my degree after reading this?

How do I know that the National Council of Teachers of English couldn’t retroactively rescind the scholarship that sent me there?

How do I know that when the sixth episode of the second season of Helix — the show on which I have toiled as a co-executive producer for the past two years — hits the air, someone isn’t going to think that my use of the line “this is a cleansing moment of clarity,” my little homage to Paddy Chayefsky’s Network, is now beyond the pale in the context of these confessions?

How do I know that the very act of putting these thoughts to keyboard won’t result in some sort of archaeological examination of my life’s work leading to the final determination that — as a fucking plagiarist — I am essentially unfit to continue doing the only thing I have ever wanted to do?

How do I know that someone isn’t going to figure that the time has come to gut this son of a bitch once and for all?

There’s no negotiating with plagiarists, Dubbie — you take credit for a man’s ideas, you rob his spirit!

— “The Middleman,” from the episode “The Boy-Band Superfan Interrogation” of the television series The Middleman, written by Jordan Rosenberg, created by Javier Grillo-Marxuach

In 2006, Marvel Comics asked me to create a new hero. All they wanted was to name the character “Wraith,” as they owned the name. I came up with the idea of a space zombie — a dead man whose body was reanimated by an alien entity that remains symbiotically bonded to his skin and consumes the souls of others: a power that the grimly revenge-obsessed Wraith occasionally used to vanquish his foes.

Wraith was the Man with No Name in space. At first I loved him in all of his goth glory — I was certain I had created Wolverine by way of The Dark Knight for the Hot Topic set. When I talked to my editor about the character during the heady early days of the project, we were so excited that we even schemed to see Wraith become one of the “Guardians of the Galaxy” (a comic series that was about to be relaunched in the publishing event of which Wraith was part) in much the same way that Spider-Man had once joined the Fantastic Four.

That was until I told a high school friend about Wraith’s oil-slick black body-suit and poncho-like cloak, his pale skin, white hair, and the polymorphous weapon (sometimes it was a sword, sometimes it was a raygun) he wielded with all his might … and he quickly convinced me that I had ripped off Michael Moorcock’s Elric.

Okay: to be fair, he didn’t “convince” me. He only dropped the suggestion in my mind — and my immediate response was to exasperatedly shriek, “I’ve never read Elric!”

And it was legit. I never had. Seriously — I have, as I’ve said, a classical-realist memory and I’d definitely remember reading a whole series of novels about the ultraviolent adventures of a soul-sucking albino goth. And, frankly, if I were to rip off Elric, I would have done more to cover my goddamn tracks than putting the motherfucker in space and changing the color of his eyes from red to black.

But all I could think about was “Table Talk.” All I could think about was wanting to make my mark once and for all without being a fucking plagiarist.

On the verge of a full-blown nervous breakdown, I spent a sleepless night doing all the internet research I could on Moorcock’s Melnibonéan fantasy stories, trying to figure out how I might have known them — and combing my own library for clues as to how I might have come up with an idea so derivative of someone else’s work. I became convinced that this was not “Table Talk” all over again, but something far more insidious: a criminal impulse that had, having been tamped down over time, now taken up residence in my unconscious mind.

By the time I called my editor the following morning — pure confession in my now ragged and sleep-deprived voice, convinced that this was the moment of my final unveiling — and told him the entire project had to be scrapped, I had also convinced myself that I had ripped off everyone from Bram Stoker to Anne Rice to Dan Simmons.

Of course, the first thing my editor asked was, “Have you even read Elric?” I replied, “Absolutely not!” and that was kind of that. Actually, that wasn’t kind of that — I spent the next 15 minutes trying to convince this poor man that I am a fucking plagiarist. But he just wasn’t having it.

Duly talked off the ledge, I hung up the phone and quickly decided that my world-class meltdown had probably just destroyed both the character’s and my own long-term future in comics. Well, the freak-out, but also the truth that I had managed to create an utterly derivative character all by myself.

To this day, when the phone rings from Marvel Comics — usually in the form of a young and newly installed editor who likes my work from a few years back and thinks it’d be nifty to collaborate — I open the conversation by asking, “Are you sure you want to work with me? You do know I’m crazy, right?”

It’s self-fulfillingly self-destructive, I know. But everyone deserves fair warning.

I’m not gonna sit here and plead not guilty. […] If you watch comedy eight hours a day, something will register, and it’ll come out. And if it happened, I said, “I apologize. I’ll pay you for this.” But I wasn’t going out of my way to go fucking grave robbing. ’Cause if you’re on top, they’re gonna look for your ass. […] And there’s lots of people who took entire mannerisms from me. It’s not something I can get mad about. It’s flattery. It’s great. When it happens the other way around, you’re just supposed to smile.

— Robin Williams, Rolling Stone magazine, February 21, 1991

It makes perfect sense that my childhood idol was dogged by allegations of plagiarism for much of his professional life.

But you know what I truly loved about Robin Williams? The thing he did that freed my mind and inspired me to be something other than who I was? It was how his turbo-charged brain combined and recombined disparate elements into a cohesive absurdist whole.

The Byzantinely circular, free-associative part of Robin Williams’s early, cocaine-fueled work (even though at the time I wouldn’t have known cocaine from lemon/lime Tang) was to me what punk rock, a skateboard, and hand-painted Doc Martens were to my way-cooler contemporaries.

Williams’s pioneering collage-and-remix bits — like “Elmer Fudd sings Bruce Springsteen,” the “Soviet Suppressions” that kicked off his album Reality, What a Concept, his Shakespeare pastiche (“the moon, like a testicle, hangs low in the sky!”), the digressive riff where he goes to the prom on acid (“No, Mr. Smith, I’ll have Becky back in this dimension real soon! Wings! We’ve got to get those snakes coming out of your eyes fixed!”), or even how he once greeted a swell of applause from the audience by shouting “GIVE US BARABBAS!” — hit me with the force of shattering cosmic revelation. All his flights of illogical, yet comedically sensical, and emotionally real, insanity made me feel like I was watching a kindred soul broadcasting Truth from a far more advanced place on the spectrum of consciousness.

Robin Williams’s comedy explained the world with the same labyrinthine framework with which I understood popular culture: speed, juxtaposition, and incongruity.

He spoke the way I processed the then-nascent 100-channel universe — where the still-standing UHF channels routinely programmed Hazel in close proximity to Ultraman, in close proximity to scrambled, pre-internet softcore, and a new thing called MTV featured five-minute programs of constantly changing genre 24 hours a day.

In every creator’s life there is one icon in the culture who seems to reach out from the television screen, or the stage or page, or the hi-fi speaker, and says, “I make a living using the skills you hope to someday develop — it’s okay for you to move ahead, it can be done.” Even though it was George Lucas and Star Wars that made me want to tell stories for a living, it was Robin Williams — even though he was a comic and I desired to be something very different — who showed me how I wanted to tell those stories.

Before you think all the hand-wringing confession that has gone before this was merely a Trojan Horse into yet another think piece about our postmodern condition of sampling, ripping, appropriating, and recontextualizing, let me make one thing absolutely clear. Robin Williams stole jokes: it wasn’t cool, he eventually copped to it, and I consider that example with the same weight as I do what I learned from his rapid-fire comedic stylings.

The reason I bring up Robin Williams is not just to expiate the piece of my psyche on the table, but to suggest that there is another, gentler part of my consciousness that, on occasion, whispers — in a pacifying Jeff Bridges–like drawl — something along the lines of “Duuude … go a little easy on yourself, lest you forget, your childhood idol committed suicide … and that Marvel thing’s kinda nuts!”

Why shouldn’t I be a little more forgiving of the venal sins of my teenaged self?

Seriously, I live in a media universe in which a man who is arguably the most influential filmmaker of the past thirty years emerged from widespread accusations that his first film Reservoir Dogs was lifted lock-stock-and-barrel from Ringo Lam’s Hong Kong New Wave film City on Fire …

A director whose last two films, Inglourious Basterds and Django Unchained, literally include in their very names the titles of the pulp war film and spaghetti western that served as partial inspirations (The Inglorious Bastards and Django … and interestingly, the latter was subject to countless rip-offs due to its own success, all bearing the “Django” name in the title) …

Indeed, for the vast majority of my adult life, Quentin Tarantino — whose mastery of collage is, to be fair, matched only by his peerless ability with dialogue and scene structure — has been one of if not THE standard-bearer for art and innovation in screenwriting. That alone says more than a million online think pieces about our culture of appropriation.

So why can’t I stop hating myself and forgive myself for being a fucking plagiarist?

There are dark places in the mind that stubbornly resist the effort to excavate the irritating artifact whose removal will provide relief. Or maybe it’s just that there is no artifact and no relief is possible.

Or maybe I just want to be heard.

Or maybe it’s something even worse. Something that is equal parts mercenary and pathetic.

Don’t quote other movies. Don’t tell a story someone else could tell better.

— Wim Wenders

A few weeks ago, I was at a friend’s birthday party.

A mutual acquaintance — a fledgling writer who has yet to land her first gig on a television series — tells me about the various jobs she has taken to make ends meet until her ship comes in. One of the more recent ones was at least fun because it required her to watch TV for a paycheck.

That sounds cool. I ask her to tell me more. She explains that she spent several months watching and transcribing broadcast materials, and writing summaries, for an app commemorating Saturday Night Live’s 40th anniversary.

The app’s main selling point? On-demand access to every sketch ever performed by the Not-Ready-For-Prime-Time-Players and their assorted descendants.

“Every sketch?”

I emit the closest I will ever come to that horrible cliché, the audible gulp.

She smiles, trying to read me. To her, this conversation is about little else than the scope of her work in what was a transiently pleasurable temporary occupation. My mood turns a deeper shade with each passing word as I try to maintain my outward composure. I choke back the black bile rapidly gathering in my throat.

I return home from the party, head for my computer, and type the words “I am a fucking plagiarist.”

Time to go ugly early.

As we manipulate everyday words, we forget that they are fragments of ancient and eternal stories, that we are building our houses with broken pieces of sculptures and ruined statues of gods.

— Bruno Schulz

I’d like to share something with you. Something I learned exactly 48 hours ago when I began researching this piece.

On January 24, 1976 — four years before I immigrated to the United States from Puerto Rico … years before the widespread availability of cable television would have allowed me to watch American network TV in my homeland … long before I’d hear the words “Saturday Night Live,” or “Robin Williams” … a full 18 months before the world premiere of Star Wars, much less its run in Spanish-language theaters … and six years before the broadcast of the sketch that moved me to become a fucking plagiarist — the sixth sketch of the 11th episode of the first season of Saturday Night Live featured guest hosts Dudley Moore and Peter Cook performing one of their celebrated comedy routines from the ’60s.

The premise? A food critic attempts to interview the incompetent proprietor of a truly horrible restaurant with hilarious consequences.

The sketch was titled “Table Talk.”

Don’t shoot a western if you don’t like horses.
— Wim Wenders

          Flags raised marking Hong Kong handover's 20th anniversary   
Chinese President Xi Jinping, center, sings with Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, fourth left, and chief executive-elect Carrie Lam, fourth right, and Hong Kong artists during the grand variety show as part of a ceremony on the 20th anniversary…
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SINGAPORE: The Port of Singapore has been named the best seaport in Asia for the 29th time, beating Hong Kong and Shanghai. This was announced at the 2017 Asia Freight, Logistics and Supply Chain Awards (AFLAS) on Thursday (Jun 29). According to the a news release by the Maritime and Port ...
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Hong Kong's private home prices hit a record high in May, according to government data released on Friday, just as Chinese President Xi Jinping praised the local government for "making progress" on its work on housing.
          Vpon Releases the Latest Hong Kong Mobile Advertising Data Report   
...-- HONG KONG, CHINA--(Marketwired - Jun 29, 2017) - Vpon Big Data Group releases the Hong Kong Mobile Advertising Statistics and Trends report, revealing the latest landscape of Hong Kong mobile advertising. The report indicates that a... [article continues]
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          Soldier Story SS103 Hong Kong SAR’s 20th Anniversary Commemorative edition 1/6 ASU   
The Airport Security Unit (Abbreviation: ASU; Chinese: 機場特警組) formed in 1977 as Special Action Squad, is a special force of the Hong Kong Police Force tasked with the security of the Hong Kong International Airport. ASU is responsible for airport security, primarily targeting terrorist situations such as aircraft hijacking, but in urgent situations, is used as a backup force for situations outside of the airport.

Soldier Story SS103 Hong Kong SAR’s 20th Anniversary Commemorative edition 1/6 scale "ASU (Airport Security Unit)" 12-inch figure features: HEADGEAR - MICH 2001 Helmet shell Team Wendy helmet chin strap, Oakley sunglasses (smoke lens), Bolle X800 tactical goggles | HEAD SCULPT - Modern ASU life-like head sculpt, S2.5 BODY, Bare Hand (1 Pair), Bare Feet (1 Pair) | UNIFORM - ASU navy blue combat shirt, ASU black T-shirt, ASU navy blue combat pants, Danner tactical boots (sewing) | TAC GEAR - ASU ID card, ID card chain, Tactical belt, Tactical belt loop x 4, ASU molle tactical vest, ASU gas mask pouch, TAD molle admin pouch, 5.11 tactical molle utility pouch x 2, 5.11 tactical molle water bottle pouch, 5.11 tactical molle Vtac 6.6 medical pouch, 5.11 tactical molle large drop pouch, Hand cuffs pouch, OC spray holster (short version), Cell phone pouch, G-17 9mm double magazine pouch (2017 version), M4 5.56 drop leg double magazine pouch (2017 version), Radio pouch, Belt loop link, Tactical shield (metal plate), Tactical shield cover, Sabre Defense OC spray (short version), Hand cuffs (metal), Multi-tool, Ball pen (red), Ball pen (yellow), Rotated baton holster, Expandable Baton (metal), Cable tie x 2, Carabiner, G-Shock watch, Cell phone, Oakley Si tactical gloved weapon hands x 3

Scroll down to the rest of the pictures.
Click on them for bigger and better view.

WEAPON - G17 9mm pistol, G17 9mm 17-rd magazine x 3, G17 Pistol safety lanyard, M3X Tactical light (attach to G17 pistol), Model 6004 Tactical holster with light, M4A1 14.5” assault rifle, M4A1 5.56 rifle magazine x 4, KAC rail cover x 2, Surefire tactical flashlight, Surefire tactical flashlight remote switch, EOTech 552 holograhic weapon sight, Tango down vertical fore grip (surefire), Matech rear adjustable flip-up sight, 2 point tactical sling

COMMUNICATION - Motorola MTS tactical radio, Motorola MTS radio antenna, Motorola bone conduction, ear microphone and PTT switch

PATCH SET - HKSAR Police Force velcro patch (for tactical vest), HKSAR Police Force velcro patch (for tactical shield), HKSAR flag velcro patch x 2, A+ blood velcro patch x 2, Call sign velcro patch, ASU logo round velcro patch | Figure stand with exclusive ASU (Airport Security Unit) name plate

Related posts:
Soldier Story Hobby Expo China 2017 Exclusive 1/6th scale HONG KONG ASU 12-inch figure previewed on my toy blog HERE
Preview LEO Toys 1/6th scale Hong Kong Airport Security Unit (ASU) 1.0 Training Version 12-inch figure HERE

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          China's Xi swears in Hong Kong leader as city marks 20 years of Chinese rule - CNN   


China's Xi swears in Hong Kong leader as city marks 20 years of Chinese rule
Hong Kong (CNN) The red and yellow standard of the People's Republic of China rose over Hong Kong Saturday as the city marks two decades of Chinese rule. China's President Xi Jinping swore in new Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam, the city's first ...
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McClatchy Washington Bureau -Los Angeles Times -South China Morning Post -Asahi Shimbun
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Xi a Hong Kong con i fedelissimi«Come il Padrino con la sua cupola»

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Le due visioni di Hong Kong Vent’anni fa il passaggio alla Cina

A vent’anni dal passaggio dei poteri alla Cina l’ex governatore Chris Patten e il negoziatore comunista Chen Zuoer rileggono la Storia

          China flexes military muscle during Xi visit to Hong Kong   
Mr Xi rode in an open-top military vehicle past rows of soldiers lined up on an airstrip on his visit to the People’s Liberation Army garrison.
          EXTRA ARANY SZINES RITKA 1000000 DOLLARS HONG KONG TARTÓBAN - Jelenlegi ára: 300 Ft   

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Jelenlegi ára: 300 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-07-01 08:34