Monday 30 October 2017

Chinese Economic Dominance

Grandma Nitty’s has closed. This restaurant was beloved for years. But its closure is part of larger economic and geopolitical trends. The owner of Grandma Nitty’s said that one reason she closed the business is that after training cooks, they left for China where they made more money. Foreign English teachers also know that the money is in China. Taiwanese business leaders know that the money is in China. So, Taiwan should be worried about China becoming the dominant economic and military power in the world. Right? Wrong. Here’s why. Look at Africa. China has one new military base in Africa, the only Chinese military base outside of China. This base is to help fight piracy off the east African coast. China has also built a port in the coastal city of Djibouti, the capital city of the country with the same name. China has also built a railway connecting Djibouti with Addis Ababa, the capital of neighboring Ethiopia. Why is China building up the economies of Africa? Because when Africans have money, they can buy Chinese products. And when African economies can also make products, Chinese can buy African products. It’s similar here in Taiwan. Chinese businesses invest here, and Taiwanese businesses invest there. China knows that if the global economy does well, China does well. And if the Chinese economy does well, the global economy might do well also. By contrast, what is America doing in Africa? Troops in Niger. Bombing in Somalia. War in Libya. Yes, China has one military base in Africa, but China hasn’t killed any Africans. America has. Yes, China kills its own people and throws them in jail just for political dissidence. America also kills its own people. American cops kill unarmed Black American men. And even though Blacks are a minority in America, they are the majority in American prisons. Black Americans die by American cops, and Black Africans die by American military. But won’t China invade Taiwan some day? China and Taiwan haven’t had a military battle for over 35 years. To those who say China is going to invade, my question is when? This year? This month? This week? Tomorrow? Tonight at bedtime? By contrast, America is currently at war in nine countries: Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, Niger and the region of the Philippines with a Muslim rebellion. To those who say that those aren’t really wars, they’re just bombings, I say, tell that to the families of the women and children who have died by American bombs. But doesn’t Taiwan need America? America was allies with Afghanistan and then invaded. America was allies with Iraq and then invaded. America was allies with Pakistan and then bombed them. Taiwan is a small country. America can turn on us at anytime for any reason. During the American presidency of George W. Bush, the world had a more favorable view of China than America. And currently the majority of the world views America as the biggest threat to world peace; not China, not North Korea, not Islamic terrorism, America. Chinese economic dominance doesn’t mean a mainland invasion of Taiwan. Chinese economic dominance means that Taiwan will still have its own military, still have its own government elected in free and fair multiparty elections, and still have a distinct identity.

Monday 23 October 2017

Trump Year One

It will soon be one month since the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States.
What can we do?
Please join a panel of artists and writers who will take your questions.
Thursday 2 November 7pm-9pm at the Red Room in Taipei
Please email with any questions.

Twins Of Today

Romulus and Remus are the mythical twins who founded Rome and all of the Western Civilization that came after. Climate change and nuclear war are the apocalyptic twins that can destroy all of humanity. These aren’t my words. These are the words of American psychiatrist Robert Jay Lifton who recently spoke with Democracy Now! In the interview he observed that in theory a civilian president restrains the military generals. Now it seems that the military generals are restraining the president. As just one example, President Trump’s ban on transgender service personnel surprised the brass. I’m reminded of that scene in the movie The Madness of King George: “When felons were induced to talk they were first shown the instruments of their torture. You show the king this to induce him not to talk.” Will Trump’s cabinet use the 25th Amendment to induce him to stop tweeting? As hurricanes destroy the American south and fires destroy the American west, Trump is threatening war with North Korea and Iran. If America attacks North Korea, North Korea could attack South Korea. Even if no nuclear weapons are used, North Korea can destroy Seoul, the capital of South Korea, with conventional weapons. Almost ten million people live in Seoul. That’s more than twice the population of Los Angeles, California, the second largest city in America, and almost half the entire population of Taiwan. It seems extremely cowardly for Trump to risk the lives of millions of South Koreans, America’s allies, in a war that will never reach American land. America is already bombing eight countries: Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Yemen and the Muslim region of the Philippines. And American troops were recently killed in an operation in Niger. Again, people are dying because America is making war on them. It is a completely one sided war where no bombs are dropping on America. Iran and North Korea could be added to the list just as easily as the others have been. While America spends hundreds of billions of dollars on war, American unemployment is 30%; that’s one hundred million people who have either stopped looking for work or only have part time work, or only have a series of temporary jobs. Half of all Americans, 150 million people, are living in poverty. And one third of Americans, one hundred million people, can’t afford enough food and housing. Puerto Rico, an American territory, has been destroyed by a hurricane. And Trump is threatening to remove all aid from Puerto Rico, leaving the people there to die. With the hurricanes and fires at the outer edges of America, it seems that devastation is creeping from the outside in. Chris Hedges talks about the myth of human progress. Complex societies don’t go on living. They often self destruct. Greece, Rome, Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, etc. If they don’t self destruct, empires eventually collapse like the British Empire. The ancient Greeks understood that life was cyclical. The difference is that this time there are no more peoples nor places to invade and no more resources to exploit. In other words, if America dies, it will take the whole world with it. Perhaps Hedges and Lifton are twin harbingers.

Monday 16 October

Trump Year One

It will soon be one month since the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States.
What can we do?
Please join a panel of artists and writers who will take your questions.
Saturday 4 November 2pm at Ting Ting Cafe in Taipei
Please email with any questions.

Jeremy Lin’s Mistake

Jeremy Lin should not wear dreadlocks. After doing so, Kenyon Martin, who is Black, criticized the hairstyle. Responding to Martin, Lin said that his dreads are a sign of respect for Black culture. If Lin respects Black culture, he should take a knee at the national anthem. If Lin respects Black culture, he should speak out in support of Black Lives Matter, or donate to them. If Lin respects Black culture, he should remove his dreads. If Line respects Black culture, after removing his dreads he could also attend Sunday service at a Black church since he is a Christian. Also in his recent statement on the matter, Lin observed that both he and Martin are minorities and that Martin has Chinese tattoos. If it’s wrong for Martin to have Chinese tattoos, that doesn’t make Lin’s dreads right. Furthermore, Lin says he is wearing dreads to respect Black culture, not to speak out against Martin’s tattoos. Lin’s dreads ignore the fact that many Asians and Asian Americans are racist against Blacks. Take the case of Lou Jing. Lou Jing was born and raised in China. Her mother is Chinese and her father is Black. She looks Black. She doesn’t look Chinese at all. She experienced racism in China even after she won a singing contest in Shanghai on TV which made her popular in China. In Asia more broadly, racism against Black people is so common that we don’t even realize it. Take the case of Darlie toothpaste. It was originally called Darkie. The name was changed to Darlie but the Chinese name is still ‘Black People’. And the brand logo is still a Black man smiling. Is the Colgate Company, who owns Darlie, respecting Black Culture by making money from Black people? If they want to respect Black culture then they should issue a statement about Black Lives Matter or donate to them. Perhaps the Colgate company, who owns Darlie, believes changing the Chinese name will cost too much money. If that’s the case then perhaps they feel money is more important than fighting racism. One thing we can all do to respect Black culture is to stop buying Darlie toothpaste. Finally, Lin’s dreads, regardless of intention, show a disrespect, and at the very least an insensitivity, to the condition of Black American males. If you’re a Black man in America you risk getting shot and killed by the police every time you step outside. Black American men are not free. Asian men in America do face racism but they don’t face the risk of getting shot and killed by the police. White Americans don’t look at Asians and think ‘criminal’. This is not to reduce the racism that Asians in America face. This is to acknowledge that while White Americans have more privilege than Asians and Blacks, Lin is in a specific position of privilege that Black Americans are not in. Lin didn’t grow up poor and in the ghetto. He is a good basketball player. But if you’re Black and poor and from the ghetto and you’re as good a baller as Lin, then you probably had to work harder to get there than Lin did.

Monday 9 October 2017

Trump Year One

It will soon be one month since the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States.
What can we do?
Please join a panel of artists and writers who will take your questions.
Saturday 4 November 2pm at Ting Ting Cafe in Taipei
Please email with any questions.

Dangerous Taipei Times

The top story of the Thursday 5 October Taipei Times is dangerous and irresponsible. Not once did the story cite any sources for the claim that China will invade Taiwan in 2020. Based on all available evidence there is no reason to believe that China will invade Taiwan. China and Taiwan haven’t had a military battle since the 1970s. In other words, there has been no shooting for over 35 years. China knows that many Taiwanese and Taiwanese military personnel believe an eventual Chinese victory will result if war breaks out. Yet China still hasn’t invaded. China has said they will invade if Taiwan declares independence. Taiwan hasn’t declared independence, hasn’t changed its name from the Republic of China, nor changed its Olympic team name. So the independence justification of invasion is currently absent. Yes, China is building island military bases, has one aircraft carrier, and is building up its military generally. That doesn’t mean they’ll invade. In fact China has had missiles pointed at Taiwan for 35 years, but they’ve never used them. Taiwan currently has a DPP president. China has not invaded. In the year 2000 Taiwan elected its first DPP president. China didn’t invade. In 1996 Taiwan reelected Lee Teng Hui after he said Taiwan and China had a special state to state relationship. China did not invade. And recently, the American military says that Chinese military planes in international airspace are acting ‘unprofessionally’. They didn’t get more specific than that. Japan also recently complained of Chinese drones in disputed airspace. In both cases, no shots were fired. In 2001 a Chinese fighter jet collided with a larger, slower, American spy plane and the Chinese pilot died. No shots were fired. There was no subsequent war. China’s economy is not as strong as it was in recent years. And internally, we simply don’t know how stable China is. In fact, the rumors coming from China’s leadership elite are that the rich and powerful in China want their children to live in America and Canada. If you’re already rich and powerful in China, why leave? Possibly because from your internal perspective you perceive instability. Yes, China is building island military bases. This doesn’t mean they’ll invade as they’ve been building up their military since the end of WWII and yet they haven’t invaded. Taiwan and China also have strong business ties. Both Taiwan and China have prospered economically under the current status quo which has existed for 35 years. Chinese and Taiwanese business leaders carry influence in the governments of both China and Taiwan as evidenced by the crackdown on corruption in China and the numerous business corruption stories here in Taiwan. These business
leaders care about money more than anything else. They don’t care about the patriotic rhetoric of uniting all Chinese people as though we were still living under some dynasty that rules by the mandate of heaven. There is no economic motivation for China to invade Taiwan. China is a fully integrated and important member of the international community and the second largest economy in the world. They have no need to risk their current status with war.

Monday 2 October 2017

Trump Year One

It will soon be one month since the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States.
What can we do?
Please join a panel of artists and writers who will take your questions.
Saturday 4 November 2pm at Ting Ting Cafe in Taipei
Please email with any questions.

Indigenous Peoples Day

As Taiwan comes upon Double Ten 2017 we must remember that the fight for the rights of the indigenous people in Taiwan continues. This fight is linked to the fight of all Taiwanese people to live in a democracy and to have freedom. No one in Taiwan is free unless all of us are free. The rights of the indigenous people in Taiwan are also linked to the rights of the indigenous people of North America; specifically the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe who have the basic human right to clean drinking water. This right is being attacked by the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) which will carry tar sands oil through indigenous land. Why is this pipeline being built? Oil. Why is America dropping bombs on seven Muslim countries; Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen? Oil. The people in these countries are dying from American bombs. They have the basic human right to live. The greed for oil profits, and general greed, are literally killing Muslims and indigenous peoples. The right for Muslims to live is linked to the rights of the indigenous peoples of the world. Greed and racism motivated the genocide of indigenous people of the Americas. Oil greed and islamophobia are motivating the genocide of Muslims in central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Oil is also contributing to climate change. The rights of indigenous people to drink clean water and the rights of Muslims to live free from American bombs is linked to the rights of all of humanity to live without impending climate change that will make the planet uninhabitable and kill all of us. This year, Columbus Day in America falls on 9 October, one day before Double Ten. Los Angeles, California, the second largest American city, with a population of almost four million, compared to Taipei’s almost three million, has changed Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day. This is one victory for humanity. President Tsai Ing-wen’s apology to Taiwan’s indigenous people was also a victory for humanity. But more needs to be done. The rights of Taiwan’s indigenous people, and all people in Taiwan, and all people everywhere in the world is a global issue. The greed for oil, resources, and general greed has driven human history. It was greedy White people from Europe that went out to conquer the peoples of the Americas, Africa and Asia. White supremacy drives human history. We ignore it at our own peril. It recently reared its ugly violent head in the American city of Charlottesville, Virginia. White supremacy has been given permission by the White supremacist American President Donald Trump to be violent. It was candidate Trump who told his supporters that if they become violent he’ll pay for their legal defense. It was candidate Trump who called Mexicans rapists and called for a ban on Muslims and was endorsed by the KKK. And after one White supremacist murdered a Bernie Sanders supporter, 33 year old Heather Heyer, Trump said that Nazis and the KKK are fine people. Trump then pardoned a law enforcement officer who was found guilty of illegally racially profiling Latinos. As we approach the one year anniversary of that terrible day when Trump became president we must continue to fight for the human rights of all us. The other choice is death. Taiwanese people can help Americans by going to America. Taiwan passport holders can stay in America for 90 days. That’s 90 days of activism, civil disobedience and fighting for justice on the front lines. But be warned. The cops in America are not like the cops in Taiwan. American cops will shoot you. They will kill you. And if a White supremacist tries to kill you, American cops might stand by and just watch as they did in Charlottesville where they were caught on video doing nothing when one White supremacist took out his gun and fired at unarmed counter protesters. All of us in Taiwan can also bring at least one part of America to a halt. We can use our bodies to block the entrance to the American Institute in Taipei. We can also use our bodies to block the construction work of the new de facto American embassy in Neihu. Humanity may ultimately go extinct, but to paraphrase the writer Chris Hedges, we must fight war, nuclear war, climate change, greed and Trump not because we will win but because they are war, nuclear war, climate change, greed and Trump.

Monday 25 September 2017

Hedges On Culture

On Sunday 17 September the writer Chris Hedges, at the end of his weekly show On Contact on RT, said, “Culture and literacy, in our final stage of decline, have been replaced with noisy diversions and empty cliches. The Roman statesman Cicero inveighed against their ancient equivalent: the arena. Cicero, for his honesty, was hunted down and murdered; his severed head and right hand nailed onto the speaker’s platform in the forum. The roaring crowds were gleefully told he would never speak or write again. We are infected by a toxic mindless cacophony; our own version of spectacle and gladiator fights, bread and circus, pumped out over the airwaves, in endless cycles. Political life has fused into celebrity worship. Education is primarily vocational. Intellectuals are cast out and despised. Artists cannot make a living. Few people read books. Thought has been banished especially at universities and colleges where timid pedants and careerists churn out academic drivel. ‘Although tyranny, because it needs no consent, may successfully rule over foreign peoples,’ Hannah Arendt wrote, in The Origins Of Totalitarianism, ‘it can stay in power only if it destroys first of all the national institutions of its own people.’ And because ours have been destroyed, the imbecilic utterings of our degraded culture are tweeted daily in soundbites from the Oval Office."

Amazon And Censorship

Amazon recently deleted over one thousand negative reviews of Hillary Clinton’s new book.

America And Censorship

Writing in his weekly column for Truthdig, Chris Hedges wrote on Monday 18 September “The Department of Justice called on RT America and its ‘associates’—which may mean people like me—to register under the Foreign Agent Registration Act. No doubt, the corporate state knows that most of us will not register as foreign agents, meaning we will be banished from the airwaves. This, I expect, is the intent. The government will not stop with RT. The FBI has been handed the authority to determine who is a “legitimate” journalist and who is not. It will use this authority to decimate the left. This is a war of ideas. The corporate state cannot compete honestly in this contest. It will do what all despotic regimes do—govern through wholesale surveillance, lies, blacklists, false accusations of treason, heavy-handed censorship and, eventually, violence."

Trump’s Violence Addiction

On Friday 22 September Henry Giroux wrote a piece for Moyers & Company where he wrote, “The American public needs a new understanding of how civic institutions collapse under the force of state violence, how language coarsens in the service of carnage, how a culture hardens in a market society so as to foster contempt for compassion while exalting in a culture of cruelty. How does neoliberal capitalism work to spread the celebration of violence through its commanding cultural apparatuses and social media? How does war culture come to dominate civic life so as to become the most honored ideal in American society? Unless Americans can begin to address these issues as part of a broader discourse committed to resisting the existent authoritarianism in America, the plague of mass violence will continue and the promise of a radical democracy will become nothing more than a relic of history."

Monday 18 September 2017

Trump Year One

It will soon be one month since the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States.
What can we do?
Please join a panel of artists and writers who will take your questions.
Saturday 4 November 2pm at Ting Ting Cafe in Taipei
Please email with any questions.

Taiwan Fake News

Chen Shih-min’s (陳世民) recent editorial is irresponsible and dangerous. There is absolutely no need for Taiwan to have nuclear weapons. In the first place, one nuclear weapon is enough to destroy the planet. The detonation would release an extremely large amount of particles into the atmosphere. These particles would block out the sun and cause a nuclear winter. Temperatures across the planet would drop to the point where no crops could grow. Humanity would starve to death, freeze to death or both. So the solution is not to increase the number of countries that have nuclear weapons, thereby increasing the number of nuclear weapons in the world, thereby increasing the risk of an accidental or intentional launch, thereby increasing the risk that all 7.5 billion of us will die. The solution is to use diplomacy to rid the world of nuclear weapons. This can be done. North Korea can be negotiated with. In the 1990s, then American president Bill Clinton sent former president Jimmy Carter to North Korea. Carter successfully negotiated a halt to North Korea’s weapons program in exchange for fuel. However, after George W. Bush came into power he did away with that deal and North Korea resumed its weapons program. Bush later said that he would defend Taiwan against China. Taiwan and the world would have been safer if Bush kept the Clinton deal in place and said nothing about Taiwan and China. Chen writes: “North Korea’s nuclear weapons development program appears to have progressed rapidly in a short time and there is a real possibility that it will soon be able to strike the US.” This statement is untrue. Yes, there was a recent earthquake in North Korea which North Korea claims was the result of a successful underground test detonation of a thermonuclear bomb, or hydrogen bomb. That quake was followed by a second quake. North Korea claims that this second quake was caused by the collapse of the cavern where the weapons test was conducted. But, according to Robert Kelley, the former director of nuclear inspections of the International Atomic Energy Agency, it is highly unlikely that North Korea’s claims are true. Kelley, who has 35 years of experience in nuclear weapons, stated several reasons why North Korea’s claims are highly unreliable. First, anytime North Korea claims anything, it is unreliable. Second, the earthquake could have been caused by an explosion that wasn’t from a nuclear weapon. Third, if North Korea’s claims are true, then there might be small amounts of radiation released from the collapsed cavern. These small amounts of radiation would not be dangerous but they would be detectable. They have yet to be detected. Fourth, North Korea released a photo of Kim Jong-un looking at a device which North Korea claims is their weapon of mass destruction. According to Kelley, who saw the photo and other photos, there are flaws in the device which cast doubts on its authenticity. Fifth, according to Kelley, North Korea doesn’t have a single missile that can reach America with any accuracy. They only have the ability to reach Japan and passed Japan. And even then they don’t have the ability to track or guide their missiles after they fly over Japan. In other words, America is in no danger of a North Korean attack. Finally, Chen plays the China card. China and Taiwan have not had a battle for over 35 years. There is no evidence that they’ll go to war anytime soon. Neither war nor nuclear weapons is the way for Taiwan to protect itself or stand on the world stage. Taiwan needs to project its soft power, like the recent Universiade games as just one example.

Monday 11 September 2017

Taiwan Police Shooting

The police recently shot and killed a man. The suspect was a Vietnamese migrant worker. And he was naked. Police claim he was throwing rocks at them. If this man was indeed a migrant worker who fled his job and decided to stay in Taiwan illegally, why? Why was his situation so desperate that he broke the law, threw rocks at the police and was naked? The police claim that they were unable to subdue the suspect after using pepper spray on him. The police further claim that after using a baton on him it broke. Protesters demanded the release of the dash cam video. What can be done to prevent this from happening in the future? Here are eight things that can be done. First, there must be an investigation into this incident. The investigation should be carried out possibly by the Criminal Investigation Bureau or some other government body with legal power that supersedes the police. The police are not above the law. Second, the family of the dead man must initiate a lawsuit against the police. If they don’t have the money to travel to Taiwan, an attorney should pay for them to come to Taiwan and take up their case pro bono. Third, if you see the police doing something, anything, video record them with your phone. Go Facebook live. If the police stop you, sue them. Then submit the Facebook live video as evidence. The police serve the people. If the people can’t video record the police then the people aren’t free and the police are gangsters. Fourth, require all police officers to wear body cams. The more evidence the better. Fifth, require all police officers to have tasers. If the baton and pepper spray fail to subdue a suspect, use the taser. Sixth, legally ban the practice of forbidding foreign workers from leaving their dorms at night. What we do when we’re not working is none of our employer’s business. Forbidding movement is imprisonment. It’s slavery. Seventh, investigate racial profiling in Taiwan. The Vietnamese migrant worker who was killed claimed that the police previously harassed him. It’s no secret that a lot of Taiwanese people like White people. It’s also no secret that a lot of Taiwanese don’t like Vietnamese nor Pilipino people. Even our daily language usage is racist. White men who legally work in Taiwan teaching English aren’t referred to as migrant workers. But Vietnamese and Pilipina legal female factory workers are referred to as migrant workers. Finally, give ROC citizenship to all migrant workers. This includes Vietnamese, Pilipino, and all factory and domestic workers, and all foreign English teachers, after we’ve been here for five years. And give ROC citizenship to everyone who is born here. One reason foreign workers flee from their jobs is because they’re paying extortion fees to agents and brokers who are really human traffickers and part of organized crime. Make them citizens and they no longer need agents and brokers. Democracy is for everyone. Taiwan is for everyone who lives here. This is our home. This is our country. This country belongs to all of us.

Monday 4 September 2017

Trump Reelection Likely

Michael Moore, one of the first to warn that Trump would become president, says the president is on track to win reelection.
Moore also unveiled a strategy to defeat Trump.
Although Hillary won by 3 million votes, Trump still won by electoral college.
Removing the electoral college requires a constitutional amendment which is a long and difficult process.
Moore is pushing for the state legislatures to require the electoral college votes to go to the popular vote winner, thus bypassing the constitutional amendment requirement.

Media Smears Bernie

Bernie Sanders recently Tweeted, “By pardoning Sheriff Arpaio, President Trump has once again made clear where he stands: on the side of racism and discrimination."
Then, Maggie Haberman, reporter for the New York Times, Tweeted, “Worth recalling that Jane Sanders [Bernie’s wife] appeared w Arpaio once and toured his tent jail"
Last year Jane Sanders did go to Arpaio and Tweeted, “I asked about racial profiling, ‘Papers Please,’ and deputizing civilians to round up undocumented people. He declined to answer."
Then Julian Assange Tweeted, “Worth recalling that we exposed who you are last year:"
Assange then shared the link to an excerpt from an email form the Hillary Clinton campaign.
The excerpt reads, “We have a very good relationship with Maggie Haberman of Politico over the last year. We have had her tee up stories for us before and have never been disappointed. While we should have a larger conversation in the near future about a broader strategy for reengaging the beat press that covers HRC, for this we think we can achieve our objective and do the most shaping by going to Maggie."

American Made Review

Tom Cruise’s latest movie, American Made, is adequately made. The cinematography is typical of many recent American films. There are a lot of quick cuts where a simpler wide shot would have been just as or more effective. But director Doug Liman does use some wide shots effectively and at expected times, like watching three small planes fly in formation. It’s interesting to see this chapter of the drug war and the historical figures in it. However, it’s from the perspective of the American White male. Not once do we see how ordinary everyday non-White people in Latin America were killed because of American imperialism, which the drug war is part of. A better movie about the drug war is Traffic (2000). The cast is more ethnically diverse and it’s not just from the perspective of the drug dealers, as American Made is. Traffic shows the perspective of the drug dealers, addicts and law enforcement. It’s also an ensemble of stars acting well whereas American Made is all Cruise. Traffic is based on the 1989 British TV miniseries of the same name which is also worth checking out. The American movie hints at the futility of the drug war. The British miniseries more directly suggests that the drug war is futile. There is also a 2004 American miniseries of the same name which is not worth checking out. Often American remakes are not as good as their non-American originals. The title American Made servers as a reminder that the drug war is American made, many of the problems and deaths of the drug war are American made, and many things made in America are also of low quality.

Monday 28 August 2017

Hillary And Nazis

The Democrats, Indivisible, Indivisible Taiwan and the establishment continue to demonstrate how slimy, sickening and uninspiring they are. Recent events have shown that they don’t even care about the upcoming midterm elections. They only care about putting Hillary Clinton in the White House in 2020. Recently, American Nazis held a rally in the American city of Charlottesville, Virginia. A group of counter protesters also rallied to voice their opposition to Naziism. One Nazi drove a car into the counter protesters killing three people. Two were law enforcement officers. The third was Heather Heyer. Heather Heyer was an anti-racism activist. She was also a supporter of Bernie Sanders. This was an act of White domestic terrorism. How did President Trump respond? He said that Nazis are good people. Trump didn’t suggest that there’s a problem with White culture. Trump didn’t say there was a problem with country music. Trump didn’t say the problem is with White families. How did the Democrats respond? Indivisible, and Indivisible Taiwan, is a group that supports Hillary Clinton, Kamala Harris, the Democratic Party, and the establishment. They are not progressive. They are not grassroots. Prominent member of Indivisible, Alex Mohajer, wrote an article titled “Indivisible March to Honor Heather Heyer, Resist Trump Agenda – The Countdown to 2020 Begins with Dedication to Heather Heyer”. He went on to Tweet, “I’ll be there. For Hillary. For Heather. Will you?” In other words, Indivisible and Indivisible Taiwan are exploiting the murder of a Bernie supporter as part of Hillary Clinton’s 2020 presidential campaign. They are using a dead progressive to support a corporatist warmonger. How disgusting. Don’t they blame Heather Heyer and all Bernie supporters for Hillary losing the election? Don’t they think Heather Heyer was a sexist Bernie Bro? Don’t they think Heather Heyer was a Sandernista? Jane Wong is the unelected leader of Indivisible Taiwan. What does she think? David Chang is the unelected advisor to Indivisible Taiwan. He also worked on Hillary’s failed 2008 campaign where she released the infamous photo of Obama in a turban, thereby telling people not to vote for him because he’s a secret Muslim. What does David Chang think? Helen Yeh is a prominent member of Indivisible Taiwan and was interviewed by New Bloom Radio. What does she think? Theresa Lynn is also a prominent member of Indivisible Taiwan and was also interviewed by New Bloom Radio. What does she think? Mary Goodwin is also a prominent member of Indivisible Taiwan and was also interviewed by New Bloom Radio and she’s a professor in the English Department of National Taiwan Normal University. What does she think? Is New Bloom Radio even covering this story? Where is Hillary Clinton? What does she think? And what is Trump up to now? He held a rally where he praised local Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Arpaio was convicted after he detained several undocumented immigrants in a tent compound that he called his own personal concentration camp. Protesters came to voice their opposition to Trump. The police fired on them with rubber bullets. The protesters were peaceful and unarmed. And now the president has pardoned Arpaio.

Monday 21 August 2017

Godaddy Dumps Nazis

Saturday 12 August in the American city of Charlottesville, Virginia, Nazis and the KKK held a rally.
Others held a counter protest.
A Nazi drove a car into the counter protest and killed three people.
In response to this act of terrorism, Godaddy stopped hosting the Nazi website the Daily Stormer.
The Daily Stormer registered with Google but Google later also stopped hosting it.
The Shida Post is also hosted by Godaddy.

Will Trump Resign?

On Tuesday 15 August President Trump praised Nazis as good people.
Cenk Uygur, founder and head of the Young Turks, the most viewed news channel on YouTube, predicts that Trump will resign before the end of his first term.
Uygur also predicted that Trump would win his party’s nomination six months before it happened.
Uygur also said that Trump had a good chance of winning the general election.
Tony Schwartz, ghost writer of Trump’s biography, The Art of the Deal, who spent 1.5 years with Trump to write the book, predicts that Trump will resign before the end of the year.

Leaving Taiwan Observer

The Shida Post began working with Joseph Gorka and Vincent Lovell, the founders and heads of Taiwan Observer, Another Side of Taiwan, and other websites and Facebook groups.
I was writing a weekly column for Taiwan Observer called the Andres Agenda.
On Friday 18 August Joseph Gorka posted that Black Lives Matter is the same as the Ku Klux Klan.
I have since left Taiwan Observer and the Shida Post will no longer work with Gorka and Lovell nor their sites and groups.

Bernie Sanders 2020

Bernie Sanders will be promoting his new book in Iowa.
Iowa is the first primary state.
Sanders is already running for president in 2020.

Monday 14 August 2017

Tsai’s Warmonger Friends

President Tsai Ing-wen‘s recent visit with war criminal Dick Cheney is disgusting. Her actions validate Cheney’s lie that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, Cheney’s advocacy of torture and Cheney’s war in Iraq that cost one million lives. There is no need to visit with this lying war monger. The president should not have met with him. Instead, she could have released a public statement that sounds something like this, “For decades Taiwan has helped America with friendship and Taiwanese American immigrants who contribute to America. Taiwan also has a shameful history of making war against sovereign indigenous peoples and a shameful history of torture. Visiting with Dick Cheney would validate Cheney’s advocacy of torture and Cheney’s war in Iraq. Taiwan doesn’t publicly support America’s 2003 invasion of Iraq nor does Taiwan support torture." Although Tsai’s coziness with the American Empire is dismaying, it’s consistent with one of her previous actions: the Trump phone call. Again, she never should have taken that phone call and instead could have made a public statement that sounds something like this, “For decades Taiwan has helped America with friendship and Taiwanese American immigrants who contribute to America. Donald Trump has verbally attacked women and immigrants. As the first female president of Taiwan, who contributes to American immigration, I must respectfully decline this well meaning gesture thereby reaffirming Taiwan’s support for the human rights of women, immigrants and all people." The president of Taiwan is in the same company with the likes of Trump and Cheney. Congratulations. She’s a celebrity like all celebrities. Who will she meet with next? Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte? The Kardashian’s? Michael Jackson’s grave? When Michael Jackson died, the writer Chris Hedges observed that celebrity culture has a lot of self loathing. Donald Trump hates himself so much that he paints his natural skin tone orange and rakes his own hair into a wild styleless frenzy. He paints his head and wears a crown like a clown warrior king of some mythical insane kingdom. At Jackson’s funeral there was a photo montage that showed him with Nelson Mandela followed immediately by a photo of him with Kermit the Frog. Hedges observes that celebrity culture equalizes everyone who is famous. Tsai Ing-wen, the former leader of the DPP, and fluent English speaker, is in the same company as Donald Trump, failed businessman, failed realtor, twice failed husband. He hides his multiple documented business failures and bankruptcies with blatant dishonest claims of wealth. His private life is public. We’re first entertained by fiction, then the nonfiction of the real actors who play in the fiction and now we’re entertained by the genre called reality TV. An oxymoron. The surreal and the absurd are the here and now. Perhaps it only makes too much sense that Trump is a star of the genre called reality and could be the leader of the world. He is the star and villain of this show that is both his and ours. Ours because we consume the tweets that consume him. We are the stars of our own shows that play out on our social media posts which loudly demand and cry out, ‘Look at me!’ But it’s not enough for Trump to tweet. He must be the biggest star, President of the United States, in real life. He wants us to say, ‘George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Donald Trump.’ This is our unreal reality. This is part of what Hedges calls the Empire of Illusion. And it even reaches Taiwan.

Monday 7 August 2017

Pelosi Praises FOX

FOX News interviewed the leader of the Democrats, Nancy Pelosi. FOX asked Pelosi if Democrats will win back the house in 2018 and if she’ll run for Speaker. Pelosi answered, “That’s so unimportant. What is important is that we have a lively debate…" She ended the interview by saying to FOX News, “Thank you for being a guardian of democracy."

Foxconn’s Bad Deal

Foxconn is the Taiwanese company that makes Apple products.
Foxconn will build a new factory in the American state of Wisconsin.
Wisconsin will give the factory a US$3 billion taxpayer funded subsidy.
Wisconsin will also exempt the Foxconn factory from laws preventing river pollution.
Foxconn has a history of polluting rivers from at least one of its factories in China.

Affirmative Action Lawsuits

The Justice Department plans to investigate and take legal action against universities that practice Affirmative Action.

Trump Golfing Again

The president’s approval rating has lowered to 33%.
He will go to his New Jersey Golf Resort for 17 days.

Monday 31 July 2017

American Police Violence

Police in America fatally shoot 2 to 3 people every day.

The Democrats’ Problems

The Democrats have two problems. One is Hillary. The other is that they have no message.
Hillary probably won’t be president ever. In the previous election Mitt Romney lost. He never ran for president again. Before that John McCain lost. He never ran for president again. Before that John Kerry lost. He never ran for president again. Before that Al Gore didn’t become president. He never ran for president again. So, the losers usually don’t become president in subsequent elections. Hillary lost to Obama in 2008. Then she lost to Trump in 2016. First she lost to a popular young skinny Black kid with a funny name then she lost to an unpopular old White man with a scary name. Hillary can’t win. And now she’s writing a book about her loss to Trump. She seems to be unable to let go of the idea that she doesn’t need to earn the presidency. Rather, it’s her turn to be president. So while the rest of the country is fighting Trump on healthcare, climate change and trade, Hillary is writing a book about herself. Her previous book bombed in sales.
The second problem that Democrats have is a lack of message. Hillary lost in part because she had no message. “I’m better than Trump” is not a message. And it’s not enough of a message to win. Tom Perez, the current Chair of the Democratic Party, was recently asked what the Democrats stand for. He couldn’t give an answer. And a recent poll shows 52% of Americans believe that the Democrats stand for nothing. At two meetings of Indivisible Taiwan, a Democratic organization, David Chang, who worked for Hillary’s 2008 campaign, said Hillary is the “pragmatic” choice. That’s also not a message. It’s just rhetoric, sound bites and platitudes. It has no substance and means nothing. It also doesn’t help Democrats that they’re similar, but not the same, as Republicans. Jerry Brown is the governor of California. He’s a Democrat and California is one of the most, if not the most, Democratic states. Brown supports fracking. So do Republicans. Nancy Pelosi, leader of the Democrats and also from California, is against healthcare for all. So are Republicans. And it was Democrats in California that defeated giving all Californians healthcare. Even the words that Democrats use are the same as the words Republicans use. When Michael Moore spoke out against the war in Iraq, his critics said, “He hates America.” When I spoke out against the war in Iraq I was also told that I hate America. At a recent Indivisible Taiwan meeting, Jane Wong, the unelected leader of Indivisible Taiwan, said, “Feminism used to hate men.” And at another public meeting of Indivisible Taiwan, she accused me of hating David Chang when she said to me, “Don’t hate him.” Accusing others of hate is not a substantive debate on specific policies. It’s not a message. As long as Democrats continue to support Hillary Clinton, Jane Wong, David Chang, Indivisible, Indivisible Taiwan and continue to have no message, they’ll lose. How can Democrats win? First, dump Hillary. She lost when she ran against Obama. She lost again when she ran against Trump, who had a 60% disapproval rating on his first day in office. Hillary can’t win. Second, feel the Bern. Bernie is by far the most popular politician in America. He has a 60% approval rating. If Democrats don’t support him then it looks like they want to lose. Finally, have a message like “healthcare for all, war for none.” Give everyone healthcare, like Canada and Europe and Japan and Taiwan, and stop dropping bombs on non White Muslims in the Middle East.

Monday 24 July 2017

America Kills Civilians

During the past six months America has killed 12 civilians per day while fighting ISIS.

Worst Polling President

President Trump’s approval rating at six months is 36%.
At six months he is polling worse than any president in 70 years.

Democrats Believe Nothing

52% of Americans believe that the Democratic Party doesn’t stand for anything.

Kamala Harris 2020

The Hill reports that Hillary Clinton’s donors are now supporting California State Senator Kamala Harris, former Attorney General of California, for president in 2020.
In 2011, One West Bank donated US$6,500.00 to Harris’ election campaign.
Steven Mnuchin was the head of One West Bank in 2011.
His wife, Heather Mnuchin, gave US$8,750.00 to Harris’ election campaign.
In 2013, California prosecutors claimed that One West Bank had committed over one thousand legal violations. Harris, who was Attorney General at the time, didn’t prosecute One West Bank.
The following year Heather Mnuchin donated US$850.00 to Harris’ 2014 campaign.
Steven Mnuchin is currently President Trump’s Treasury Secretary.

Pelosi DNC Broke

The DNC, Democratic National Committee, is in debt of over one million dollars.
California Senator Nancy Pelosi, leader of the democrats, has said that she’s good at raising money.

Criticizing Israel Illegal

AIPAC, the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee, supports a bipartisan law in congress that will make it illegal to support the boycott, divestment and sanctions of Israel movement.
If passed, violators of this law could face up to twenty years in prison.

Taiwan Nuclear Energy

The Ma-anshan Nuclear Power Plant in Pingtung County’s Hengchun Township (恆春) was shut down after a cooling system failure.
Earlier this year, the very same nuclear power plant also had to shut down its reactor due to a cooling system issue.
Last month two nuclear power plants also had issues.
Weather knocked down a power transmission tower which caused the Jinshan Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei City’s Shihmen District (石門) to shut down.
And a water pump at the Guosheng Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei City’s Wanli District (萬里) overheated.

Monday 17 July 2017

America In Afghanistan

America invaded Afghanistan in 2001 to capture or kill Osama Bin Laden. He was killed in 2011. America is still occupying Afghanistan. Afghanistan is America’s longest war lasting 16 years.

America In Pakistan

America killed Bin Laden while he was in Pakistan and still bombs and drone strikes Pakistan because members of the terrorist groups Al Qaeda and the Taliban hide in Pakistan. If counting from the raid that killed Bin Laden, America has been at war with Pakistan for 6 years.

America In Iraq

America invaded Iraq in 2003 because of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD). There were no WMD. After the leader of Iraq, Saddam Hussein, was captured and executed, Al Qaeda and the terrorist group ISIS went into Iraq. America is still there fighting Al Qaeda and ISIS; 14 years.

America In Syria

America is currently bombing Syria to fight the government and support the rebels.

America In Libya

America began bombing Libya to remove its leader Muammar Gaddafi. Gaddafi died and the terrorist group ISIS went into Libya. America is still bombing Libya to fight ISIS.

America In Yemen

The UN Food Agency warns that Yemen is on the brink of famine. Yemen is also in the midst of a cholera outbreak. The famine and cholera outbreak are caused by the war that has been going on there for two years. Saudi Arabia, America and the Yemeni government are fighting against rebels.

America In Somalia

America is bombing Somalia to strike the terrorist group Al-Shabaab.

Monday 10 July 2017

Pelosi ‘worth trouble’

The New York Times asked Nancy Pelosi if she should step down as leader of the Democrats after the party’s post election losses. Pelosi responded by saying, “I think I’m worth the trouble."

Nuclear Weapons Ban

122 countries have signed a treaty banning nuclear weapons. The Netherlands is the only nuclear power to sign the treaty. Just one percent of the world’s nuclear weapons could destroy humanity.

Bolton Wants War

In the Sunday 9 July Taipei Times, John Bolton, former American ambassador to the United Nations, called for an American ‘military response’ to North Korea’s most recent missile test. It’s very easy for America to go to war with other countries: Afghanistan, America’s longest war, even though Osama Bin Laden has been dead for over five years yet America still has troops there and might send more; Iraq, even though there were no weapons of mass destruction and one million people have died in that war and we’re still there for almost 15 years now; Syria, who America attacked first for no reason; and Yemen who America also attacked first for no reason. John Bolton never suggests any specific action against North Korea. Should America bomb North Korea, killing innocent civilians? Innocent civilians die in all wars. Send in troops? Also killing people? How would North Korea respond? Will North Korea launch a conventional strike against Seoul killing millions? Nuclear strike against Seoul also killing millions? Begin a nuclear war that will destroy humanity? Less than one percent of the world’s nuclear weapons can make humans extinct. Will China send one million troops into North Korea to defend North Korea as they did during the Korean War? If China defends North Korea will America bomb China? Will China respond by attacking Taiwan, killing millions of people? North Korea is not a problem. They have been testing missiles for over 50 years. That’s half a century. And in half a century they’ve never attacked anyone. North Korea has a starving population and a government that is highly unstable, as evidenced by recent high level purges and executions. It’s possible they aren’t stable enough to launch an attack much less sustain a war. China is not a problem either. Yes, they have one aircraft carrier which is a Soviet relic from the1980s and it doesn’t even have catapult launchers. In other words, fighter jets can’t launch from it. In other words, it’s not an aircraft carrier. China has no aircraft carriers. Furthermore, America has 19 aircraft carriers. Yes, China is building island military bases. But both China and North Korea are already surrounded and contained by American military power. To China’s west they share a small border with Afghanistan where America has a military base. To the south and west of China and North Korea there are American military bases in the Philippines, Australia, Japan and South Korea. Only to their north does China and North Korea see no American military bases. And the majority of the world views America as the biggest threat to world peace. Not Russia, not China, not North Korea, not Iran, not IS, not Islam. America. Diplomacy works and it has before. In the 1990s then American president Bill Clinton sent former American president Jimmy Carter to North Korea. Carter successfully negotiated a halt to nuclear weapons research in exchange for fuel. After President Clinton left, George W. Bush came into the White House and did away with the Carter deal. North Korea increased its nuclear weapons power under George W. Bush. Diplomacy works. Lack of it fails. The current president of South Korea has publicly stated that he’s willing to talk to North Korea. And even the old enemies, America and Russia, have recently agreed to a ceasefire in Syria even though America has accused Russia of interfering in the recent election. Diplomacy works. War fails. Yet, many people like John Bolton, Donald Trump, Barack Obama and George W. Bush, all of whom have never been in combat in war, find it very easy to kill people in war.

Monday 5 July 2017

War In Yemen

In Yemen two thousand people have died from the cholera outbreak that has resulted from damage to the water infrastructure. The water infrastructure is damaged due to Saudi Arabia and America bombing Yemen.

American Opioid Epidemic

One of the reasons for America’s opioid epidemic is that opioids are prescribed to treat pain. There is no evidence that opioids help with chronic pain.

American Hate Crimes

According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics the majority of hate crimes are not reported to the police.

Monday 20 June 2017

Fake News

The Taiwan Observer and The Shida Post present Fake News.

  • Saturday 2 September 2017 130pm – 430pm
    Ting Ting Cafe
  • Agenda 130pm – 215pm Opening Remarks by Andres Chang, founder and head of
  • 215pm – 230pm break
  • 230pm – 330pm Panel Discussion with Q&A. Panel: Joseph Gorka, founder and head of Taiwan Observer; Veronique Kwak, PhD; Andres Chang, founder and head of
  • 330pm – 345pm break
  • 345pm – 430pm Closing Remarks by Veronique Kwak, PhD.

From MRT Luizhangli.
Walk West on Hoping East Road.
Turn right on Anhe Road.
Ting Ting Cafe is No. 174, Sec. 2.
We’ll be in the downstairs meeting room.
To use this space everyone must first purchase a drink and pay for the drink before coming downstairs.
There will be a limited number of printed proceedings, including agenda and transcripts of opening and closing remarks, that people can have.
Please contact with any questions.

  • Pelosi Should Resign
    Senator Bernie Sanders is pushing legislation that will give all Americans healthcare, or Medicare for All. Activists are calling on Americans to primary Democrats who don’t support the Sanders healthcare for all plan.
    Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the leader of the Democrats, doesn’t support the Sanders healthcare for all plan.
    Representative Tim Ryan of Ohio has called for Pelosi to resign. Activists have also called for Pelosi to resign. Her phone number is 415-556-4862.
    Democrats in California have killed healthcare for all in California. The phone number for the leader of the Democrats in California, Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, is 562-529-3250.
  • American Sexism
    On average women still make less money than men.
    Latinas make 55% of what White men earn. The wage gap for Latinas is greater for women of other ethnic groups.
    Mothers are paid 3% less than women without children.
    Fathers are paid 15% more than men without children.
    20% of American women have been raped.
    One third of American women have experienced physical violence from a romantic partner.
  • War In Syria
    America shot down a Syrian government warplane. On Monday Russia, who supports the Syrian government, said they would fire at American planes flying west of the Euphrates River. In related news over the Baltic Sea a NATO fighter jet buzzed a plane carrying the Russian Defense Minister.
  • Trump Disapproval 64%
    President Donald Trump has reached a disapproval rating of 64%.
  • World Obesity Epidemic
    A study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that over 10% of the world’s population, 107.7 million adults and 603.7 million children, are obese.

Monday 19 June 2017

Taipei Times Dying

The print edition of the The Taipei Times, the only daily printed English newspaper in Taiwan, showed signs of dying. The Thursday 15 June 2017 edition and the Friday 16 June edition had a front and back cover which is a two full page advertisement. The China Post also had similarly large advertisements before it ceased its print edition. American newspapers are also folding and trying to save themselves with advertising. It hasn’t worked. American newspapers are also ceasing print editions. European newspapers are different. Their print editions are not ceasing. Why? Because they are not relying on advertising. They have advertising, but their revenue comes from people buying the print editions. Why are Europeans still buying print newspapers? They have the internet in Europe. Europeans are buying printed newspapers because European newspapers print stories that their readers want to read. The Taipei Times needs to do the same. Stop being pro green. Be pro facts. Report what the mainstream media isn’t reporting. Why are homeless people in Taiwan homeless? Interview the homeless guy on the corner of Jinshan South Road and Heping East Road holding up a sign advertising apartments that neither he nor most Taiwanese can afford to live in. Why are so many residential apartments being built that locals can’t even afford to purchase? Interview the Pilipina migrant workers who aren’t allowed to leave their dorms at night and who face sexual assault and who have to pay extortion fees to their brokers. Why do some women in Taiwan do sex work? How can foreigners get involved in local politics? We live here so local politics affects us. How does Taiwan, a country not as rich as America, Canada, Europe or Japan still manage to be very safe and have such good healthcare? How can America be as safe as Taiwan and have as good healthcare? Why are Vietnam and the Philippines poorer and have more street crime than Taiwan? How can Vietnam and the Philippines be more like Taiwan? Why is there less suicide and alcoholism here than South Korea or Japan? Instead of asking how Taiwan can be more like those two countries, we should ask how can those two countries be more like Taiwan. Why is Taiwan buying weapons when everyone knows that China will eventually win if war breaks out? Shouldn’t Taiwan switch to a Vietnam style or Iraq style insurgency strategy, both of which had many victories against superior forces? Democracy can’t work unless the public is informed. The Taipei Times must continue its daily printed edition and fill it with stories relevant to the lives of people living here.

  • Solar Power
    For the first time ten percent of American electricity came from wind and solar.
  • War In Syria
    America has killed more civilians in Syria than ISIS, Russia or the Syrian government.
    Evidence suggests that American forces in Syria are using white phosphorous. White Phosphorous is a chemical weapon banned under international law.
    In the Syrian city of Raqqa 160 thousand people have been displaced.
  • War In Afghanistan
    This month President Trump gave the Pentagon the authority to set troop levels in Afghanistan. There are currently 8,400 American troops in Afghanistan. The Pentagon will send 4,000 more troops to Afghanistan. America has been at war in Afghanistan for 15 years. It is the longest war in American history.
  • Trump Golfs
    In his first 100 days in office the president has played twice as much gold as presidents Obama, Bush and Clinton did in their first 100 days combined.
  • Trump Disapproval 60%
    The president’s disapproval rating is 60% after 144 days in office.
    President George W. Bush reached a 60% disapproval rate after five years into office after his response to Hurricane Katrina.
    Former presidents Obama and Clinton never reached a 60% disapproval rate.
  • Trumpers Advocate Violence
    42% of Trump supporters, almost half, support physically assaulting journalists.

Monday 12 June 2017

91 Americans die everyday from drug overdose.
The New York Times reports that drug overdose is the leading cause of death for Americans under age 50. Opioids, like heroin or prescription painkillers, are the drug Americans are overdosing on. The number of opiod deaths has surpassed…
the peak of car crash deaths in 1972
the peak of AIDS deaths in 1995
the peak of gun deaths in 1993
the peak of combat deaths in the war between Vietnam and America

According to Doctor Andrew Kolodny, founder and director of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing, Americans are dying from opioid overdose because doctors are prescribing them too much.
Municipalities have filed lawsuits against drug companies that make opioids for overstating their benefits to the public and doctors while trivializing their dangers. Lawsuits have been filed in Washington, New York, Mississippi, Illinois and California.

The value of American student loan debt is 1.3 trillion dollars. The default rate is 11%. Before the global economic crash of 2008 the home mortgage loan debt value was also 1.3 trillion dollars and the default rate was also 11%.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein has called for Israel to withdraw from all territories it acquired in the 1967 war. In Gaza, one of the territories Israel occupies, 70% of the people there are refugees including children and grandchildren. 51% of Gaza is children under the age of 18.

The mayor of London addressed Londoners after the London Bridge terrorist attack. That same day President Trump played golf for the second day in a row. In 19 weeks, almost 5 months, President Trump has played golf 23 times. The president’s approval rating is now 36%. 43% of Americans support impeaching the president.

After President Trump exited America from the Paris climate agreement Jane Wong, David Chang and Indivisible Taiwan planned a party. After this fact was posted to Facebook, the Facebook posting for the party could no longer be found.

Saudi Arabia and America continue to bomb Yemen where the water infrastructure has been destroyed leading to an outbreak of cholera. There are over 100,000 cases of cholera in Yemen. The World Health Organization (WHO) says 800 people have died in Yemen from cholera. Oxfam estimates 1 person dies every hour from cholera in Yemen. The WHO warns that cholera cases could reach 300,000. The UN warns that of the 28 million people in Yemen 19 million, more than two thirds of the population, need some kind of aid and many face famine.


Monday 5 June 2017

On average American police kill more people in a month than British police have killed since the year 1900.
Of the immigrants that America has deported, 230 of them are American veterans.
Half of the president’s Twitter followers are fake accounts.
President Trump has exited America from the Paris climate agreement and David Chang, Jane Wong and Indivisible Taiwan are throwing a party.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Six Day War when Israel, striking first, attacked Egypt. Just before the attack both American and Israeli intelligence stated that Egypt posed no threat to Israel. Israel continues to occupy Palestine with settlements. It is the consensus of the international community that Israel’s settlements in Palestine are illegal.

Monday 29 May 2017

This week America and Saudi Arabia agreed to an arms deal.
Saudi Arabia will buy 460 billion dollars worth of arms from America over ten years.
Saudi Arabia publicly beheads LGBT people.
In Saudi Arabia women are not allowed to drive.
Saudi Arabia and America are currently bombing Yemen and have troops fighting in Yemen’s current civil war.
Infrastructure damage from the war in Yemen has left over ten million people without water and electricity.
Infrastructure damage from the war in Yemen has caused an outbreak of cholera.

According to The Guardian there are 2,000 cases of cholera daily.
There have been over 300 cholera deaths in the month of May, or over ten cholera deaths per day in May.
There have been over 30,000 cholera cases in May or over 10,000 cholera cases per day in May.

According to the United Nations 460 billion dollars can…
end world hunger for fifteen years or…
pay for college for 12 million Americans or…
according to one study in Florida, pay for the housing, job training and healthcare for all of the 565,000 homeless Americans, that’s over half a million, for their entire lives.

Monday 22 May 2017

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, White supremacists are more active now than they have been in ten years. President Trump will remove funding from government groups fighting White supremacists and us that funding to fight Islamic terrorism. More Americans die from attacks from White supremacist groups than from Islamic terrorists.

In April construction began for a second US military in Okinawa.
A majority of Americans support impeaching the president.

A new study from the Economic Policy Institute shows that wage theft, employers withholding legally obligated pay from employees, is a bigger problem than property theft. In other words, there are more bosses stealing from their employees than thieves stealing objects.

Indivisible Taiwan recently had a die-in to draw attention to America’s lack of universal healthcare. However, Indivisible Taiwan has not expressed support for Senator Bernie Sanders’ recent proposed legislation which would give all Americans healthcare. Hillary Clinton did call for universal healthcare in the 90s but has since changed her position to expanding Obamacare; currently Hillary does not advocate universal healthcare in America.

Monday 15 May 2017

More Americans die from car accidents, drug overdose and lightning strikes than from terrorism.

There are currently 8,400 US troops in Afghanistan.
The president is considering sending between 3,000 and 5,000 more troops to Afghanistan.

Economist Bill Black warns that Canada is currently in a housing bubble that is worse than the American housing bubble which crashed the global economy in 2008.

Indivisible is not a grassroots movement. It was started by former Democratic staffers. In other words, it represents the establishment and Hillary Clinton.
The unelected leader of Indivisible Taiwan is Jane Wong. At an Indivisible Taiwan meeting, Jane Wong, said, “Feminism used to hate men."

One of the advisers to Indivisible Taiwan is David Chang. David Chang worked for Hillary’s campaign in 2008. That was the campaign where she released the photo of Obama in a turban. In other words, Hillary pushed the idea that Obama is a secret Muslim. At two different Indivisible Taiwan meetings David Chang said that we should support Hillary because, “Sometimes we have to be pragmatic. That’s just how it is." Hillary lost to Obama and to then Trump. She is currently less popular than President Trump. David Chang seems to think that losing is pragmatic. If Democrats nominate Hillary in 2020, they’ll lose.

It is not enough to have meetings and post on Facebook.
Sustained civil disobedience is also necessary.

Monday 8 May 2017

In June 2016 a group of Bernie Sanders supporters filed a class action lawsuit against the Democratic National Committee – DNC. The suit alleges the DNC broke its own rules of impartiality by supporting Hillary Clinton thus defrauding Bernie supporters and being against democracy. Last week in a hearing of the suit the lawyer for the DNC said that the DNC can legally choose the candidate in a backroom while smoking cigars just like they used to.

President Trump has invited the president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, to America. President Duterte has ordered authorities and called on civilians to kill suspected drug dealers and users. Human Rights Watch has publicly objected to Trump inviting Duterte to America.

The Remington Model 700 is the most popular rifle in America. There are 7.5 million of them in America. Thousands of lawsuits have forced Remington to reveal that they knew of a design flaw in the trigger which can cause the rifle to fire without pulling the trigger. Remington has known of the flaw since 1950.

Turkey has banned Dating Shows and Wikipedia.

All 100 US senators have signed a petition calling on the UN to treat Israel equally and fairly. Israel occupies Palestine and maintains settlements outside of its borders inside Palestine. The international consensus is that these settlements are illegal.

Mark Zuckerberg, founder and head of Facebook, wants to run for president in 2020.

After the 2001 inauguration of President George W. Bush, Bush was unpopular and he spent much of his time on vacation. Then 9/11 happened which was used to justify invading Iraq and passing the Patriot Act which allowed the US government to legally spy on its own people without a warrant. Today, President Trump is very unpopular and also spends much of his time on vacation. If a terrorist attack happens, it may be used to justify another war and more crackdown on freedoms.

Monday 1 May 2017

The New York Times reports that for the first time four famines are going on in the world:

  • Somalia
  • South Sudan
  • Nigeria
  • Yemen

20 million people are at risk of starving to death.
Three countries are also at risk of famine for the first time in six years:

  • Ethiopia
  • Uganda
  • Kenya

When those countries are included 30 million people are at risk of starving to death.
According to David Miliband, president and CEO of the International Rescue Committee, these famines are cause by climate change, war, and mismanagement within local governments.

After 100 days in office President Trump’s approval rating is 40%, the lowest of any president after his first 100 days since 1945.
After 100 days in office President Trump has signed 32 Executive Orders, more than any president since 1945.
In the first 100 days of the Trump presidency the US has launched 600 airstrikes against Afghanistan and 80 airstrikes against Yemen.

Arkansas executed two prisoners Monday 24 April. It’s the first time in 16 years that any state has executed two prisoners in one day.

A 65-year study by the Congressional Research Service shows a correlation between tax increase and increased economic growth. In other words, tax cuts don’t benefit the economy.

Monday 24 April 2017

The US government has issued an arrest warrant for Julian Assange.

Earlier this month Bernie Sanders released a podcast. Within one week it climbed to the number two slot on iTunes.

American special forces have already been in Somalia and more are being deployed.

The Wall Street Journal reports that millions of dollars from the president’s 2020 reelection campaign is already going to his personal businesses.

The Intercept reports that Rachel Maddow talks about Russia over 50% of the time on her show.
There is no evidence that Russia hacked the recent US presidential election.

Monday 17 April 2017

During the campaign, then candidate Trump said he would not play golf after becoming president because he would be too busy doing the work of the president. During the Obama presidency Trump criticized President Obama for playing golf while bombing the Middle East.

President Trump currently continues to play an average of 1.5 games of golf per week while bombing Syria.
During the campaign, then candidate Trump also said he would not attack Syria.

This past week President Trump bombed a Syrian air base that Russia uses.
The base was evacuated before it was bombed.
Two hours after it was bombed Russia began using the air base again.
The president says he is bombing Syria because the Syrian government attacked civilians with chemical weapons.
There was a recent chemical weapons attack on civilians in Syria.
There has been no independent investigation into who is responsible.

President Trump has so far spent 25% of his time in office at the Trump National Golf Club in Mara Lago, Florida.

NBC reported that America is prepared to strike North Korea first. A recent poll shows ten percent of Americans support starting a war with North Korea.

The United States Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is receiving protection from US Marshals. She is receiving this protection because several times people have organized protests at her locations. Protesters disagree with her educational policies. She is the first Secretary of Education to receive protection from US Marshals.

The China Post will no longer have a print edition. After 15 May The Taipei Times will be Taiwan’s only English language daily newspaper.

Monday 10 April 2017

In the month of March American and allied forces killed 1,000 civilians in Syria and Iraq.

President Trump has played golf an average of 1.5 times per week since inauguration.
The Secret Service has requested a 60 million dollar budget increase due to the president’s frequent golfing.
President Obama had not yet played a game of golf at this point in his presidency.

One third of Americans fear going hungry or becoming homeless.

YouTube is pulling advertisements from channels that advocate racism and hate. However this same policy is also taking advertising revenue away from channels that discuss and oppose racism and hate. Some of the channels experiencing this loss of revenue include The David Pakman Show, Secular Talk, The Jimmy Dore Show and The Young Turks.

Everyday on average almost 7,000 Americans drop out of school. That’s 1.2 million students per year. Nearly 90% of these students had passing grades. Pulitzer Prize winning writer Chris Hedges, on the most recent edition of his show, On Contact on RT, opined that this fact alone shows how flawed American education is. He further commented that education in America only trains you to work in retail, fast food, survive in prison, or be a hedge fund manager at Goldman Sachs.

The death rates for White Americans had been declining since 1970. But since 2000 they have been increasing.

Monday 3 April 2017

Correction: Chelsea Clinton, daughter of Hillary Clinton, is not receiving a lifetime achievement award. Variety and Lifetime are awarding her an Impact Honoree award at their annual Women In Power luncheon.

President Trump will send 1,000 more troops to Syria.
1,000 civilians were killed in Iraq in the month of March.
150 civilians were killed in a recent American airstrike in the Iraqi city of Mosul.
There are 5,000 US troops in Mosul.

Recently on his show David Pakman presented evidence that the president is possibly suffering from a form dementia.
The president’s father had Alzheimer’s.
The president, at age 70, is the oldest person ever elected president. His vocabulary has deteriorated drastically since he was in his forties.
The president often states things that are factually incorrect.
The president lacks restraint as evidenced by his tweets and mocking a disabled person.
The president has difficulty balancing himself and is uncomfortable around stairs, steps and heights.
These are all signs of dementia.

Americans consume 80% of opioids used worldwide.
Nearly 14 million U.S. adults, one in every 13, regularly abuse alcohol.

The day after the election the American people took to the streets to resist Trump. We expanded to town halls demanding that Obamacare not be repealed. We won for now. Almost one week later, after this battle seems over and it looks safe to come out of hiding, Hillary Clinton has the nerve to make a public speech to tell the American people to resist Trump. We don’t need Hillary to tell us to do what we’ve already been doing without her and we don’t need her to try to position herself as our leader.

Monday 27 March 2017

In a recent interview, Tom Perez, the new Chair of the Democratic National Committee, DNC, was asked what the Democratic party stands for. He was unable to give any specific answers.

In another recent interview, Nancy Pelosi was asked who is the leader of the Democratic Party. She replied Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Neither of them are currently in office. In other words, there is no leader of the Democratic Party.

After two months in office President Trump’s approval rating is at 37%.
After two months in office President Obama’s approval rating was 63%.
No president has polled this low this early in 70 years.

Variety is giving Chelsea Clinton, daughter of Hillary Clinton, a lifetime achievement award. Chelsea Clinton is 37 years old.

Monday 20 March 2017

Between 2011 and 2015 there were 89 acts of terrorism committed in America.

12.4% of those attacks were committed by Muslims.
They received 44% of media coverage.
5% of those attacks were committed by foreign born Muslims.
They received 32% of media coverage.
88% of those attacks were committed by non Muslims or the religion is unknown.
They received 56% of media coverage.
The chances of being killed in America by a foreign born terrorist are 1 in 3.6 million.
According to a memo of the Department of Homeland Security, nationality is not a predictor of terrorism.

The Forward magazine has learned that Sebastian Gorka, Trump’s top counter terrorism advisor, is a Nazi.

Justice Democrats has combined with Brand New Congress.
They have over 200,000 supportes.
They have raised over 1 million dollars.

In a recent interview with The New York Times Bernie Sanders said, “Certainly there are some people in the Democratic Party who want to maintain the status quo. They would rather go down with the Titanic so long as they have first-class seats."

A recent poll shows that Hillary Clinton has a 35% approval rating.
A more recent FOX News poll shows the president has a 44% approval rating.
That same poll shows Bernie Sanders has a 61% approval rating.
Bernie Sanders is currently the most popular politician in America.

Monday 13 March 2017

As of 2015 half of Americans make US$30k/y or less.
In America 14.8% of women and 12.2% of men live poverty.
14.9% of single fathers and 28.2% of single mothers live in poverty.
1 in 5 children live in poverty.
1 in 30 children have experienced homelessness.
13.7% of seniors live in poverty.
Almost 1 out of 4 Black Americans live in poverty.
1 out of 5 Brown Americans live in poverty.
A little over 1 out of 10 Asian Americans live in poverty.
A little less than 1 out 10 White Americans live in poverty.

In the most recent episode of On Contact with Chris Hedges, on RT America, writer Hedges interviewed writer Linh Dinh. They talked, among other things, about poverty in America. They also both have written about the tyranny of the image. Hedges has talked about the Empire of Illusion, that is, how our smartphones, tablets, laptops, devices, etc. separate us from reality. Dinh has talked about how TV and cars separate us from other humans and thus our own humanity. Dinh wrote “Like television, the private automobile was invented to wean us off our own humanity. From each, we’ve learned how to amp up our impatience and indifference towards everything, and with life itself. Anything that’s seen through a screen or a windshield becomes ephemera, with its death nearly instant. You don’t have to switch channels or run over it, it will disappear by itself. All screens and windshields have been erected to block us from intercourse."

Monday 6 March 2017

AFP reports that in Germany there are 10 attacks per day against migrants.

Justice Democrats have begun a petition to ask Keith Ellison to leave the DNC and become the Chair of Justice Democrats
The Huffington Post has listed 100 lies that the Trump administration has made in its first 36 days.

For the first time a Black woman has been become the president of the Harvard Law Review. Her name is ImeIme Umana and she is the daughter of Nigerian immigrants.

President Trump gave his first speech to Congress. Bernie Sanders observed that the president didn’t mention anything about social security, medicare, medicaid, income inequality, voter suppression, nor climate change.

Monday 27 February 2017

A movement has begun to draft Bernie Sanders into starting a new party

In his first month in office President Trump’s frequent traveling has cost taxpayers $11 million. President Obama’s travels cost taxpayers $12 million per year.

In a recent tweet President Trump said that the media is the enemy of the American people.

On Monday 20 February, Presidents’ Day, protests against Trump continued in many American cities. The theme was Not My President Day.

The American city of Richmond, California, became the first city to call for the impeachment of President Trump. The city council unanimously passed a resolution calling for the impeachment of the president for violating the emoluments clause which prohibits the president from receiving money from foreign states. The president’s businesses, some of which receive money from foreign governments, are now being run by his family.

At CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Committee, President Trump openly mocked the First Amendment.

The Taipei Times and The China Post are Taiwan’s two English language newspapers. A survey of the two papers this past week revealed…

On Tuesday 21 February 2017 The Taipei Times top story was about President Tsai’s cabinet picks.
The China Post top story was about the price hikes at Starbucks.

On Thursday 23 February 2017 The Taipei Times top story was about illegal drug use in the military.
Above The China Post top story was a large photo ad for BMW.

On Friday 24 February 2017, four days before the 228 holiday, The Taipei Times top story was about 228.
The China Post top story was about the Earth-like planets that were recently discovered.

And the day before the 228 holiday the Taipei Times top story was about 228. The China Post top story was about gay marriage. In the week before 228 two times the Taipei Times top story was about 228. During the same time the China Post top story was never about 228.

Monday 20 February 2017

On Wednesday 8 March women and others from all over the world will go on strike to fight climate change, war, nuclear war, greed, and Trump. Whoever you are, wherever you are, on Wednesday 8 March, come out, go out, shout out, make yourself heard. We will fight the Dakota Access Pipeline. We will fight the Trump travel ban. We will fight the Trump lies of alternative facts. We will fight a president who thinks that court decisions don’t apply to him. And we will fight a president who uses his office to make himself even more obscenely wealthy than he already is. Make no mistake. The time is now and the cause is urgent. In less than one month the president has ordered the resumption of construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. In less than one month the president has banned Muslims from certain countries from entering the United States. The courts struck down his travel ban. He did it anyway. He goes against the courts. He goes against the law. He must be impeached. And in less than one month the president has not severed ties with his businesses. This is illegal. He must be impeached. But in that same amount of time, we, the people, have taken to the streets to fight back. And we must not stop. We must continue. It is good and it is necessary to talk to each other about what is going on in the world. If you are paying attention and you are outraged then tell people how you feel and what you think. It is good and it is necessary to take to social media. It is good and it is necessary to vote. But all of these things are not enough. We must take to the streets. We must refuse to comply. We must block streets. We must be willing to get arrested. And we know what will happen if we don’t organize a resistance of sustained civil disobedience. We know because we have been here before. There was once another man in the White House. Many of us dismissed him as an ignoramus. Indeed his speeches were so simple that they were laughable. There was no way such a fool could become the most powerful man in the world. That person is George W. Bush. He was already unpopular early in his time in the White House. Many of us, including myself, saw George W. Bush as a harbinger of the end. The Visigoths are coming. But many of us decided that we would give George W. Bush a chance. We did not know that he would take us into a war that would kill one million people. We did not know that the economy would crash and that half of all Americans would still be living in poverty today and that today one in four children in America would be living in poverty. All this in the richest country in the world. We can not wait for this to happen again. We can not wait for a war with China. We can not wait for a war with Russia. We can not wait for a war with Iran. We can not wait for another economic collapse. We can not wait for more Americans to fall into poverty. We can not wait for more American children to fall into poverty. We can not wait and we will not wait to give Trump a chance. The Democrats could have voted against the war in Iraq and they did not. The Democrats could have impeached George W. Bush and they did not. The Democrats could have nominated Bernie Sanders and they did not. The Democratic Party has demonstrated that they are not only failing to oppose climate change, war, nuclear war and greed but they are indeed helping us go to war, destroy the planet and make the rich richer while stepping on the rest of us. So the question now is not what will the Democrats do. The question is what will we, the people, do? Benjamin Franklin was asked, “What kind of government have you given us?” He answered, “A republic, if you can keep it.” This is our country and our planet and it belongs to all of us. Yes, it belongs to Muslims and those who are not Muslim. It belongs to immigrants and those who are not immigrants. It belongs to refugees and those who are not refugees. So what do we, the people, do? We will not accomplish anything by supporting Hillary Clinton and other Democrats who take corporate money. We will only accomplish things by sustained civil disobedience. We need to get out on the streets and protest.

Monday 13 February 2017

On Monday 6 February, The Guardian published a call for women everywhere to go on strike on Wednesday 8 March 2017. The strike will be led by feminist groups from 30 countries. The strike is anti-Trump and in favor of justice.

President Trump has ordered the continuation of the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has called for action, including sustained civil disobedience, at Standing Rock and other locations, to stop and reverse the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline.

According to a blog post by Sam Carana in the science blog Arctic News, siting scientists and data, the melting polar ice might release enough methane that will raise temperatures and cause a mass extinction that could include humans. Humanity could die nine years from now.

Monday 6 February 2017

President Trump issued an executive order banning certain groups of people from certain countries from entering America. As part of that order certain people can be detained and deported. More than one court in America has ruled that it is illegal to detain and deport certain groups of people under that order. The White House then released a statement saying that those court rulings don’t apply to the White House and that the White House will continue to detain and deport certain people under that order. Representative Joaquin Castro, Democrat of Texas, told Chris Hayes on MSNBC that impeaching the president for acting against the courts, and thus breaking the law, is an option that can be considered.

Trump has reached a record 50% disapproval rating after just 8 days in office. Obama reached that number after two and a half years.

On Thursday 2 February David Pakman posted a video giving evidence that Donald Trump is illiterate. One of the pieces of evidence that Trump can’t read is a video taped deposition where an attorney asks Trump to read a document in front of him. Trump’s attorney objects. Trump then fails to read the document in front of him.

On Sunday 5 February Chris Hedges, writing in his weekly column for Truthdig, repeated his call for sustained ongoing civil disobedience. In that same column he quoted Kali Akuno of Cooperaton Jackson and the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement. Akuno called for a nationwide general strike to bring America to a halt.

Monday 30 January 2017

On Tuesday 24 January the National Communications Commission here in Taiwan issued a reminder of a law passed last year that could fine television stations and suspend broadcasts as punishment for broadcasting fake news.

That same day the Ma-anshan Nuclear Power Plant in Pingtung was shut down due to a malfunctioning water cooling pump.

These two stories were on the second page of the Wednesday 25 January Taipei Times. Trump exiting America from TPP is important but the possible censorship of local media in Taiwan and a possible nuclear disaster in Taiwan are more important and more immediate to the everyday lives of everyday people in Taiwan. Yet, Trump TPP was front page top story. In other words, the Taipei Times is fake news.

President Trump has issued executive orders to…

  • resume construction of DAPL
  • exit America from TPP.
  • build a wall along the Mexican border.
  • ban American scientists from talking about climate change

Monday 23 January 2017

Donald Trump was inaugurated on Friday 20 January 2017.

He is now the current president of the the United States.
He is the 45th president of the United States.
Current estimates show attendance at his inauguration was fewer than previous inaugurations.
At a subsequent press conference the current Secretary of the Press angrily claimed that attendance was higher than any previous inauguration.

Earlier in the week of Trump’s inauguration then president Obama commuted the sentence of Chelsea Manning.
Manning will go free.
Manning was imprisoned for leaking government information including video of American forces in the Middle East killing unarmed civilians.
There is no evidence that any harm has come to anyone because of the leaks of Manning or Edward Snowden or Julian Assange or Wikileaks.

A survey of one thousand Americans by Bankrate has found that 57% of those surveyed do not have enough cash to pay for an enexpected expense of US$500.00

Monday 16 January 2017

Happy New Year

Nation of Change reports that unemployment in America is 30%.

The recent report from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence has no evidence that Russia hacked the election.
Yet the mainstream media continues to insist that Russia did hack the election.
Keith Olbermann screamed on GQ that America is at war with Russia.
Writer Chris Hedges, who correctly predicted that Bernie would not get the nomination and then campaign for Hillary, wrote in an 8 January 2017 piece for Truthdig, titled The Real Purpose of the U.S. Government’s Report on Alleged Hacking by Russia, now predicts that Trump will be successfully branded a Russian puppet and the branding will be used to successfully impeach Trump. Hedges also wrote in that piece that the U.S. government will shutdown RT and come after Democracy Now!

Merryl Streep, and other Hollywood elites, publicly spoke out against Trump at the 2017 Golden Globes. But they failed to support Bernie from the beginning. It’s possible that Bernie, not Trump, would be president had she, Bill Maher, and other Hollywood Elites, supported Bernie from the beginning.