Archive for January, 2009

Monday, January 26, 2009

Poodle Porn

Can Poodles have Sex?

No such searchword combination on my dashboard yet. But before it comes, let me tell you: yes they can.

Use your imagination at your own risk.

Related: How Ugly Sex and Dogs can be, Nov. 1, 2008

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Happy Niu Year

it stands meditatively
in a field of printed clover
it has the large soulful
eyes of a lover
desperate to be believed

The Cow Poem, by
James Norcliffe

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Beijing’s Tibet Policy and Bi Hua’s Uninvited Guests

An interesting backgrounder by Therang Buengu not quite about who hacked Bi Hua’s computer – because nobody can tell. Nobody outside the offices in charge anyway, and maybe the officials have no idea either. Written there at thebrang.blogspot.com on December 30.

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Related stories:

Tibetans in China, Dharamsala Debate, Nov. 21, 2008 »

Underthejacaranda: Bi Hua under Investigation, Nov. 22, 2008 »

Hermit needs a Break, Jan. 17, 2009 »

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Somali Piracy Industry…

… is in a worrying state.

Crew members of the Chinese cargo ship Zhenhua 4 and guests posed for cameras during something like a Thanksgiving Ceremony at Changxing Island Port in Shanghai, east China, Jan. 23, 2009. Nine pirates armed with rocket launchers and heavy machine guns had boarded their ship in the Gulf of Aden on Dec. 17. The crew then locked themselves in cabins, using fire hoses and self-made firebombs to keep the attackers at bay for six hours. Foreign warships and helicopters were contacted and helped Chinese seamen beat back the pirates later. No one was injured in the attack. (Xinhua/Chen Fei)

Hang on.

– Nine pirates armed with rocket launchers and heavy machine guns vs.

– thirty seamen armed with fire hoses and self-made firebombs who locked themselves in their cabins (apparently nobody on the bridge)?

– A fight between these two parties which lasts for six hours?

Wtf is wrong with the pirates around the Gulf of Aden? This so-called piracy industry must be a joke! I’d rather invest in a Bernard Madoff business than in theirs.

Aloha.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Beijing: No first Use of Nuclear Weapons

About China’s Second Artillery Force (SAF)

The Second Artillery Force is a strategic force under the direct command and control of the CMC, and the core force of China for strategic deterrence. It is mainly responsible for deterring other countries from using nuclear weapons against China, and for conducting nuclear counterattacks and precision strikes with conventional missiles.

The Second Artillery Force sticks to China’s policy of no first use of nuclear weapons, implements a self-defensive nuclear strategy, strictly follows the orders of the CMC, and takes it as its fundamental mission the protection of China from any nuclear attack. In peacetime the nuclear missile weapons of the Second Artillery Force are not aimed at any country. But if China comes under a nuclear threat, the nuclear missile force of the Second Artillery Force will go into a state of alert, and get ready for a nuclear counterattack to deter the enemy from using nuclear weapons against China. If China comes under a nuclear attack, the nuclear missile force of the Second Artillery Force will use nuclear missiles to launch a resolute counterattack against the enemy either independently or together with the nuclear forces of other services. The conventional missile force of the Second Artillery Force is charged mainly with the task of conducting medium- and long-range precision strikes against key strategic and operational targets of the enemy.

China Daily, Jan. 20, 2009


The white paper did not specifically mention the nuclear deal between India and the US. But it said that the US was trying to further consolidate its military alliances and enhancing its military capabilities in the Asia Pacific region.

The country’s nuclear arm, the Second Artillery Force, will use nuclear missiles to “launch a resolute counterattack against the enemy” in case of a nuclear attack, it said. This is the first time that China has publicly discussed the role and strategies of the SAF.

Times of India, Jan. 20, 2009


Of the nuclear powers, only the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of India have declarative, unqualified, unconditional no-first-use policies. In 1982, at a special session of General Assembly of United Nations, the USSR pledged not to use nuclear weapons first, regardless of whether its opponents possessed nuclear weapons or not. This pledge was later abandoned by post-Soviet Russia. The United States has a partial, qualified no-first-use policy, stating that they will not use nuclear weapons against states without nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction.

Wikipedia (no citation), viewed Jan. 20, 2009


Related: State and Party CMCs (Central Military Commissions)

Friday, January 23, 2009

JR’s tag-mongering Potpourri

China’s State Council passed a plan for universal health care on Wednesday. Much of China’s high savings rate is believed to be caused by worries about medical expenses, and the prospect of universal health care may therefore be helpful for pushing domestic demand. It may come rather late as an economic helper. The plan will probably take three years to be implemented, according to Xinhua / International Herald Tribune.

Premier Wen Jiabao will visit Europe from January 27 to February 2. The trip will include Germany, Spain, Britain, the EU headquarters in Brussels, and attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Britain’s Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Bill Rammell defended his government’s redefinition of China’s rule over Tibet from suzerainty to sovereignty. Just as in a statement to the House of Commons on December 16 last year, he suggested that this could help his government to speak more directly to China about the region’s future.

[Correction/Insertion: While ] the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office has dedicated a complete website to its approach to Working with China, foreign secretary Miliband hurt the feelings of Indian interlocutors by apparently linking the Mumbai attacks to the Kashmir conflict. A spokeswoman for Mr Miliband said that the foreign secretary had been very open and honest about his views.

Meantime, French president Sarkozy continues to enjoy the role of being the asshole in Beijing’s cupboard. German chancellor Merkel might take turns with him later this year. Both she and her Tibetan friend Dailai are viewed favorably by adults in Europe’s largest five countries, plus the USA, according to a market survey by an institute I’ve never heard of before.

I strongly differ. As far as Ms Merkel is concerned, anyway.

Happy weekend.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Obama, Inaugural Speech

Missed it on Tuesday, but I’ve just listened to it on youtube. Probably all inaugural speeches by recent American presidents sounded a bit like sermons from national pontiffs. This one, too. But what a great line for that matter:

We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things.

That’s no seamless continuation of Yes-we-can, which was appropriate at its time. But if Barack Obama becomes a successful president, his eloquence will probably be an important factor in it.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Trust’n Banks

Until recently, many people probably felt that you couldn’t trust a bank which was your debtor, but that you could trust one which was your creditor. *)

Now, more people than before probably won’t trust them either way.

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*) These impressions don’t take the small print into account

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