Anything New York


The failed Western approach to terrorism

by on Mar.06, 2017, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>World Affairs>Middle East>Posts>Opinions>Politics>Terrorism

The failed Western approach to terrorism is like painkillers which make you unable to feel the pain but do nothing to help your body recover or eliminate the source of pain.

Like painkillers, which are prescribed to patients to make them happy by making them unable to feel the pain, operations that “kill terrorists” are good propaganda to make the general public happy. But they not only always fail to eradicate terrorism, but also more likely than not increase terrorism.

If you can not understand why I am saying it is a Western approach and it is a failed approach, please study the difference between Western medicine and Chinese medicine. In Western medicine, if an organ in your body fails to function normally and causes pain and suffering, often times it is removed. In Chinese medicine, the goal is to make a failed organ get back to normal.

Trying to get something back to normal is not as easy as removing it all together. That is why people often throw away things that have malfunctioned rather than try to fix them. But for a body to function properly, organs should not be discarded so readily. For a society to function properly, people should not be purposely killed. Just like organs depend on each other to function, people depend on each other to live. You and me may not be directly affected by the removal of a person, some of that person’s relatives and friends and associates may.

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Trump’s priorities

by on Mar.05, 2017, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>Immigration & Globalization>Immigration>Posts>Opinions>Politics>World Affairs>Middle East

Trump has made several promises that are contradictory. For example, his promise to deport unauthorized immigrants is contradictory to his promise to make America great again. So what does he think is more important? Obviously, from what he has been doing since he took office, we can tell that he is putting his own interest and his own party’s interest above the interests of the country. Making America great again has to come last. The first thing in his mind is to keep his supporters happy so they will vote for him again in 4 years. The next thing in his mind is still future elections: how to make sure there will not be more Democrats.

Trump’s small-minded thinking reinforced my impression that he is mediocre, that he can not put the country’s interests first, that he does not have what it take to be a great president. His chief strategist Steve Bannon may be to blame for his petty strategies. But Trump has to be the one to take the ultimate responsibility since he does have the power to say no to Steve Bannon.

I can understand why there can not be a great president at this time though. People on the extreme right would kill any president who dare not to answer to them. So there is not much of a chance for anyone to do anything great right now. Innocent lives will continue to be destroyed for some crazy people to be happy. For the short period of time since Trump took office, innocent women and children have been killed in raids in the Middle East, immigrants have been killed, attacked, or separated from their children to be deported. All of these have been weighing heavily on those like myself who did not support Hillary to defeat Trump.

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My thoughts on Trump’s travel and immigration ban

by on Feb.01, 2017, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>Immigration & Globalization>Immigration>Posts>Opinions>Society>Racism>Posts>Opinions>Politics>Terrorism

First of all, I agree with Dallas Mayor’s assessment that Trump’s travel ban could help radicalize extremists. Whether or not there is any good reason for Trump to order such a ban is not as important as it is how the ban will be seen by the world. I am sorry to have dismissed political correctness. Political correctness is not unimportant in this case.

As to Trump’s motivation for this ban, I can only speculate. There could be a few reasons for Trump to have come up with this ban. There could be an innocent reason for the US to stop accepting refugees from Syria. I was once a refugee. So I know something about how things work for refugees. When conflicts end in the country where they come from, refugees are supposed to go back to their country if they have not resettled in another country. Whether refugees from Syria should still be sent to other countries to resettle there depends on whether conflicts have ended in Syria. Trump probably does not want to think that there are still conflicts in Syria. In reality, conflicts do not usually end so quickly. If Russia is still supporting the Assad regime, conflicts will still be there. Even after all foreign forces have left Syria, there could still be a civil war there. There will be peace there eventually. But probably not right now.

That being said, a lot of people, including myself, feel that Trump’s ban is motivated more by some people’s fear of, or worse, hatred for, Muslims. This is because Trump got into power partly by making promises to people who fear or hate Muslims that he will protect them. When government policies are made out of fear or hatred, they can not be reasonable. Why do some people have to be inconvenienced and disrespected? Human rights are not just for the majority. They are for everyone. If Trump does not want to be misunderstood, he should offer as much explanation for his decision as possible. By simply saying because the US has the need of finding extremists, some people have to be inconvenienced and disrespected, Trump is showing disrespect for these people. I can therefore tell that disrespect is the most important reason for Trump to come up with the ban. Of course, trying to keep his campaign promises, and by extension, keep his job, is another reason.

By the way, if stopping extremists from entering the United States is the reason for the ban, I can not understand why Iran is on the list of countries whose citizens are to be banned. I can only think of Iran being the enemy of Israel as the reason for her to be included.

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The election results show the elite were delusional

by on Nov.10, 2016, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>Presidential Campaigns

The elite had tried hard to convince the American public that all was well. In the end, the elite were the ones who were fooled by their own lies. A large part of the American population did not get fooled. The fact is it is hard to fool people on whether or not things are going well for them.

Maybe for the elite, the election was just about culture. But for many people, it was about the economy, as it is told here: Why did Trump win? The economy, stupid.

With so many people supporting Bernie Sanders in the Democratic Primary, how can anyone expect Hillary Clinton to win? And yet, some people find the election results shocking!?!?!

To win the general election, the Democrats should have nominated someone who can draw support from Bernie Sanders supporters as well as Hillary Clinton supporters. Instead of doing that, they tried hard to strong arm Bernie Sanders supporters into supporting Hillary Clinton. Chuck Todd has got it right on this: Chuck Todd explains how Donald Trump won the presidency.

By the way, the Trump campaign was not easy given all the oppositions from the elite, but succeeded thanks to Trump’s ability to self-finance part of the campaign, the support from his family members who were all good and capable people, the support from the Republican Party leadership, and the support from the general population.

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Should American companies move factories to other countries?

by on Oct.05, 2016, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>Presidential Campaigns

It depends on the social environments of the countries the factories are moved to. If workers’ protections and environment regulations in those countries are lacking, the move will not help those countries or the US. The move will just serve as a way for companies to avoid regulations in the US. It will not help grow the consumer markets in those countries. The world economy will not grow as a result.

If workers’ protections and environment regulations are adequate in those countries, the consumer markets in those countries will grow, the world economy will grow, and the US economy will grow as well.

So free trade agreements, if set up improperly, will be harmful, but can be a good thing if set up properly.

By the way, other than avoiding regulations, there are two more reasons for American companies to move factories to other countries: to increase competitiveness by reducing cost, and to maximize profits. So many American companies will move factories to other countries whenever it is possible whether people like it or not. There is nothing much that anyone can do about it. The US government can only use taxation to reduce the benefit of increasing profits American companies will receive by moving their factories to other countries to offset the immediate cost to the US economy brought about by the move.

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Who is Donald Trump?

by on Oct.01, 2016, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>Presidential Campaigns

I am totally against racism. So I am not supporting Donald Trump’s campaign. But I find myself wanting to defend him again and again, because I just want to be fair to him, as I want to be fair to everyone.

Trying to avoid paying taxes and openly admitting to doing it is probably the most politically incorrect things to do of all. But for Americans who are struggling like Trump and who are against government’s overspending (for some, it is overspending on social programs, for others, it is overspending on wars), this is the right thing to do.

Trump may be running a huge business empire. But his company is not publicly traded and may not be profitable. His company’s losses are not shouldered by the public. So he does not have the luxury to be generous.

Trump is someone with a lot of capabilities, as we can see from his ability to run many businesses. But he is struggling, whether he is admitting it or not. This profile is shared by a lot of Americans. This is the reason why there is a Trump campaign, and it is giving the Clinton campaign a serious challenge. If the Clinton campaign wins, a lot of Americans lose.

By the way, I have an explanation for Trump’s tendency to switch subjects and interrupt others. I think it is because his mind works very fast, much faster than an average person. Of course, being impolite is also a reason for him to interrupt others.

As to whether Trump’s failure in his businesses means he will fail in running a government as well, I can tell you this: running a business and running a government is totally different, unless you think profiting from a public office (like Hillary Clinton did) is desirable. Running a business is to bring fortunes to oneself, while running a government is to bring fortunes to others. Bringing fortunes to oneself and bringing fortunes to others require different skills and mindsets.

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Matt Bai got it all wrong on the housing market crash

by on Sep.29, 2016, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>Presidential Campaigns>Posts>Opinions>Politics>The Economy

Housing prices getting too high is the reason why many people can not afford any housing. So the housing market needs to follow the free market rules, be allowed to fall when it has to, and not be interfered with or propped up by the government.

By propping up housing prices, the government is helping out those who speculate in the housing market, letting them make a lot more money from their real estate investment than they should, and kill a lot of working people’s American dream in the mean time. This is the reason why the American dream has become impossible for a lot more working people. This is also the reason why the US economy is not growing much.

Donald Trump may not have liked the housing market crash for a noble reason. But he was with a lot of Americans in this matter. I find it regretful that he is not educated and articulate enough to offer an effective rebuttal in the debate. But being educated and articulate while being unintelligent and unthoughtful makes a presidential candidate even less qualified.

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What has the current Chinese goverment inherited in the South China Sea?

by on Sep.05, 2016, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>World Affairs>Asia>South China Sea

A map with a line around the South China Sea is what the current Chinese government has inherited from the previous Chinese government.

What is the value of that map? The current Chinese government and a lot of its supporters on this matter think that the map represents the rights for China to own the part of the South China Sea within the line, which is almost 90% of the South China Sea.

However, has any agreement between China and the countries around the line on the map ever been reached? If not, the map only represents an ambition, a desire, a plan, not a fact or reality. It only represents a goal that China tries to achieve, not a historical fact as the current Chinese government is claiming.

The reason why this goal is now being pursued openly despite of all the oppositions is that the current Chinese government is now more confident of its ability to achieve this goal and has more domestic support for this ambition because of increased nationalist sentiments, both of which is the result of increased national strength, including economic and military strength.

However, increased national strength can not alter historical facts and should not be used to try to alter historical facts. The current Chinese government may now have the money to buy ads all over the world to sway public opinions around the world. But historical facts will not change even if people’s perception of them change.

In Chinese, what the current Chinese government is doing is called 自欺欺人 – deceiving oneself while trying to deceive others (i.e., being delusional).

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Why do we have two major candidates who are both disliked by most?

by on Sep.05, 2016, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>Presidential Campaigns

When people do not like a candidate, they flock to the other candidate, overlooking all of that other candidate’s shortcomings. As a result, two candidates who are disliked by most people have got so much support nonetheless.

The possibility of letting the candidate one dislikes the most get elected has been keeping people from stopping their support for the other candidate even though they know that this other candidate is not all that great.

There are several problems with voting for the lesser of two evils. One is that you are still supporting an evil. Two is that your vote is used to elect a candidate who is unqualified. Three is that by supporting one evil, you are inviting or pressuring some people to support the other evil (to counter your support for the evil that they dislike more) which is against your own wish.

If we do not want to see an unqualified candidate getting ahead in the race, stop supporting all unqualified candidates.

Have some respect for people in the opposite camp and stop your support for the candidate that they do not like for the right reasons.

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Using volunteers is the way to get money out of politics

by on Sep.03, 2016, under Posts>Opinions>Politics>Presidential Campaigns

I do not understand why some people have a problem with the Trump campaign being able to find people to work for it for free. It is fine for people to do all sorts of volunteer and outreach activities supporting any campaign. So why is it a problem for people to work for any campaign for free?

In fact, if we do not want people with money to have more say in politics, all campaigns must use only volunteers.

Campaigns should not be judged by the amount of money they are able to raise. If they can be judged by anything, the number of people who are willing to volunteer is a good one.

The reason why an administration can be corrupted is that a candidate needs money to run a campaign, which include money to pay campaign staff.

The more grassroots a campaign is, the more it is going to rely on volunteers. The more volunteers a campaign can recruit, the more grassroots it is. So it is a good thing that the Trump campaign is able to find people to work for it for free. I would challenge the Clinton campaign to do the same.

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