Chinese in Canada Drives BMW to Claim Grocery Gift Cards, Reactions

One of the BMW woman who tried to pick up the grocery gift cards.

From NetEase:

Canadian TV Station Exposes Ethnic Chinese Women Arriving in a BMW to Claim Food Aid

Canadian TV Station Exposes Two Chinese Women Arrive in a BMW to Collect Relief Grocery Gift Cards in BMW — Following the news from several days ago about Chinese aunties in San Francisco reselling free food from a Christian church intended to help the poor, a Canadian TV station today [January 5] exposed 2 ethnic Chinese women driving a BMW to pick up relief grocery gift cards. Because too many people are taking up resources the government intended for the poor, as of 4pm that day, over 100 poor people had not been able to get the free food.

Comments from NetEase:

jtjmyd [网易江苏省无锡市手机网友]:

Truly shameless, but in comparison to ape officials, there’s still a gap.

网易福建省福州市手机网友 ip:121.204.*.*:

Sigh, even disgracing Chinese people abroad.

网易福建省厦门市手机网友 ip:220.160.*.*:

Embarrassing [Chinese community] on an international level, Chinese people truly are infamous lowly people.

网易加拿大手机网友 ip:99.225.*.*:

Is there no one coming forward to tell the truth? This is what happened: An ice storm that only occurs once every 40 years damaged the electric lines in Toronto, causing 300,000 people to suffer from a blackout, with some households having no power for 9 days or more, everything in their refrigerators going bad. The government said it would provide compensation and originally the news online was written that any household that had their power cut could claim [grocery gift cards] with their home address. This isn’t “relief aid” in the common sense. As a result, the number of people who braved -20℃ temperatures to line up to claim [the grocery cards] numbered over 700, were then informed that each location would only distribute 30 [grocery gift cards], and the crowd got angry. So the government had to hand out more, but still the demand exceeded the supply. The news could do nothing about it, so they seized the opportunity to shift people’s anger. I’ve watched the BMW women video. Her friend bought her there on the way, she didn’t get any [grocery gift cards] at all. She was only there to check. Later the news changed to say [the grocery gift cards] were relief aid, only provided for the poor, but [the government] didn’t say this at all when people were claiming them. What a scoundrel policy! This incident has stirred a lot of anger online among Chinese people in Canada, with many people supporting the two women to sue the TV station in order to protect their legal rights. The Canadian government and its media are the same shit, only doing good things on a superficial level, then diverting people’s attention to something else. Is this the capitalism that everybody yearns for?

[Note: This comment was made by a Chinese netizen in Canada.]

网易加拿大手机网友 ip:174.88.*.*: (responding to above)

This is exactly the truth. The people have indeed suffered heavy losses. Many families with babies can’t even get hot water to mix milk powder. They should all get compensation/relief aid. This P.R. crisis is so poorly handled.

[Note: Also commenting from Canada.]

网易广东省广州市手机网友 ip:14.146.*.*: (responding to above)

I see!!!

jkljddsuocjl [网易辽宁省沈阳市手机网友]: (responding to ip:174.88.*.*)

Why did [the news] insist on choosing ethnic Chinese [to scapegoat]?

网易广东省梅州市手机网友 ip:113.82.*.*: (responding to above)

Because the government dare not pick on the locals/natives, so they pick on the immigrants. Also, the largest group of immigrants there are Chinese.

网易北京市手机网友 ip:124.127.*.*: (responding to above)

So TM ridiculous. Why would they still pick on you when you have the vote? Are you so used to the life in China, SB? You’ve stayed in the cesspool so long you think people from all over the word are maggots like you.

鸭梨蛮大 [网易山东省济南市网友]: (responding to ip:99.225.*.*)

First floor [99.225.*.*], since they can drive a BMW to stand in line to claim a bit of compensation/relief aid, why not just go directly to the supermarket to buy food? Were they short that little bit of money? Since Toronto suffered a ice storm disaster, the number of households that were affected must have been many, but if [the government] only prepared 30 grocery gift cards, it must’ve been aimed at certain groups of people (for the homeless), so why were you people trying to get them?

网易广东省广州市手机网友: ip:117.136.*.*: (responding to above)

Are you a SB?! Who told you those were relief aid cards? Who told you they were prepared for the poor? The Canadian government prepared them for residents who lost electricity. As long as you had lost power, you could go claim them. Fuck, do you think a BMW is that impressive in Canada? It’s no different than any ordinary car. The sixth floor [124.127.*.*] is even more of a SB! Don’t drag in voting, what does other people’s anti-Chinese attitudes have to do fucking votes?

网易加拿大手机网友 ip:70.70.*.*: (responding to many comments above)

What a TM bunch of stupid cunts! You know nothing about the truth, all you know is to talk shit. Would it kill you to watch the news? You yourselves can’t emigrate, so you feel so happy and satisfied seeing problems with oversea Chinese people. A bunch of jerks. Do you have any TM idea what not having power in -20℃ means? [People in] Canada don’t use [central gas] heating and can’t cook if they don’t have gas stoves. Even if you arrived in a helicopter [as opposed to a BMW], so what? Canada would be better off not having you Heavenly Kingdom shit-talkers come to embarrass us ethnic Chinese people. You lot would definitely be the happiest ones to go looting here.

网易湖北省手机网友 ip:117.136.*.*: (responding to above)

Do you think just because you’ve gone to Canada that you’re yourself niubi now?

quasimodo00c [网易江苏省无锡市网友]:(responding to ip:70.70.*.*)

“A bunch of jerks. Do you have any TM idea what not having power in -20℃ means? [People in] Canada don’t use [central gas] heating and can’t cook if they don’t have gas stoves.“ Canadian stupid idiot, if it really is as difficult as you say there, shouldn’t they hurry and to the supermarket or somewhere else to solve there food problem, instead of stupidly waiting in line for food relief aid??? You stupid cunt.

birdnoreturn [网易加拿大网友]:

Just like when the Beijing auntie was hit by the motorcycle-riding laowai, the media doesn’t have a conscience.

网易以色列手机网友 ip:79.176.*.*: (responding to above)

You should tell them [Chinese mainlanders] not to believe that all foreigners are good people with good characters. People everywhere in the world are the same, some are good, some are bad.

网易越南手机网友 ip:222.255.*.*: (responding to above)

Where I am is the worst, very anti-Chinese!

Comments from Sina Weibo (1 & 2), translated by Joe:


[Everyone standing in line] in good order. If it was in China, trampling/stampeding and scalpers would’ve appeared long ago.


Is there no place without Locusts?


Fuck, what proof do you have to say they are Chinese? They are Japanese, OK? Don’t fucking always blame it on Chinese people whenever someone does something shameful.


Many of the relatives corrupt officials and nouveau riche may have money now but still have low characters in their bones, bringing their bad habits of petty profiteering and disregard of rules/order abroad to embarrass [Chinese people in general].


Wherever there are Chinese people, the ugliness of humanity will undoubtedly be demonstrated. It is determined by the deep-rooted bad habits of our national culture. Chinese people have always been selfish.


A second-hand BMW is just 3,000 Canadian dollars, just like any other car. They are necessarily rich people as our countrymen imagine. This report is only to grab eyeballs.


This is an area in Canada that suffered a snow storm, where power was out for nearly two weeks. All residents in the disaster area could collect relief aid, whether you drive BMW or a BVW [not]. Are you saying those who drive BMWs can’t pick up relief aid when they’ve been hit by a disaster?


Foreigners don’t understand that in China, driving a BMW doesn’t actually mean you are rich. Just look at our low-income housing communities and you’ll often see BMWs and Mercedes-Benzes.


The BMW came from this kind of little-by-little saving and scrimping. Diligent and frugal, the traditional virtues of Chinese people.


I saw that San Francisco story two days ago. How can we be certain they are Chinese aunties?


I’ve been to a small Scandinavian town. It turns out there are umbrellas placed at the bus stops in the town. The people who use them will return them. Then Chinese people came. Took all the umbrellas home. I saw several umbrellas in one Chinese family’s home. I didn’t understand, what were they hoarding so many stupid umbrellas at home for? Chinese people’s mindset of taking petty advantage [petty profiteering] of things is really deep in their bones.


There are poor people in Canada?


Very good, [them] harming people abroad is better than harming people in our own country.


Exactly, making a fuss about of nothing. Only poor people drive BMWs, rich people ride bicycles. Stupid.


Ok, so everybody’s talking nonsense without knowing the truth! In fact, it was due to the loss of power that people were picking up food aid; it had nothing to do with being rich or poor.


The gap: Rich people in America all value giving back to society, with many donating all their wealth to society after they die. In China, some rich people are even collecting minimum/subsistence social security subsidies [intended for the unemployed and destitute].


Canada is the headquarters of corrupt Chinese officials!


Some of our female Party members are so afraid of wasting our country’s food that they’ve one after another gone abroad to eat the free food of the rich. This is all because our Party and country has educated them well!


People of socialist countries using communist methods to take revenge upon capitalist countries.

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  • Germandude

    “This is exactly the truth. The people have indeed suffered heavy losses. Many families with babies can’t even get hot water to mix milk powder. They should all get compensation/relief aid. This P.R. crisis is so poorly handled.

    [Note: Also commenting from Canada.]”

    I am sure he’d be the first to protest in China as well…

    • nqk123

      he does not sound like he’s from Canada. I don’t think Canadian have that kind of mentality

    • hess

      i wonder if canadians use milk powder? ive only seen it in china..

      • Elijah

        Not really, that’s what boobies are for.

        Wonderful, wonderful gifts from Nature they are.

        • nickhz

          sure we use “milk powder” we dont call it milk powder but some mothers dont breast feed.

  • Terrik

    “Fuck, what proof do you have to say they are Chinese? They are Japanese, OK? Don’t fucking always blame it on Chinese people whenever someone does something shameful.”

    How ironic.

    • nickhz

      seriously, it’s always the same thing…. ” they couldnt be chinese, chinese people would never do that” and as soon as something happens to them it’s the “americans” or the “japanese” who did it to them. like with the burning of the consulate… it turns out it was a chinese person who did it, but the whole time they are calling for action against the american people.

      • Germandude

        And be assured about the netizens comments now: The silence is deafening.

        • Kai

          It’s not silence. The NetEase report of it is so far the second most commented article of the past day.

          • Germandude

            Happy New Year Kai. I hope there will be a translation on chinaSmack then as well. Had a quick look into the reporting and was surprised the comments were not sky-rocketing as of yet.

          • nickhz

            you obviously cant read or understand. never did i say they are similar instances. i am saying that every time i read some thing, this is what i read, these are my personal experiences from this site and others. the reaction that a lot of chinese people have is that they refuse to admit that they are the same as other countires, in the fact that there are good and bad people. it is a blind nationalist pride that i rarely see anywhere else… and whenever something happens to them they blame it (more often than not) on the same two countries. it is up to the country itslef to protect its consulate. not the country the consolate is in. but as soon as this story came out that is exactly what the chinese people were saying. (and there are other commentors other than on chinasmack.)

          • Kai

            I read your comment in context of Terrik’s comment and this story as well as those you’ve mentioned. I’ll let others decide if I misinterpreted you unfairly.

            I agree that a lot of Chinese people exhibit a sort of Chinese exceptionalism. I agree that a lot of Chinese people exhibit a sort of blind nationalistic pride, including one that I personally feel is less publicly prevalent in most other places.

            I just disagree that this story or the Chinese consulate burning story are good examples of either of these things.


            Article 31. The host nation may not enter the consular premises, and must protect the premises from intrusion or damage.

            There really was no reason for you to get personal with your leading sentence.

      • Kai

        The overwhelming amount of netizens expressing embarrassment on these sort of incidents (presumed ethnic Chinese person does something embarrassing abroad) pretty much goes against your accusation. Terrik himself pretty much highlighted the ONLY translated netizen comment that expresses disbelief that the women were Chinese. On balance, there’s very little evidence here that “it’s always the same thing” and that Chinese people never believe something bad involves a Chinese person.

        The burning of the consulate is pretty different in nature from a pair of Chinese ladies thinking they could get some free groceries. It isn’t that unusual for people to assume the person who vandalized your country’s consulate in a foreign country is likely a foreigner who has a gripe with your country/government. Or, put another way, how many people would really assume that the person who attacked their country’s consulate in a foreign country is one of their own? I think it’s unrealistic to expect Chinese people much less anyone to assume that.

        Moreover, to be accurate, most of the Chinese comments weren’t calling for “action against the American people”. Let’s put aside the fact that there’s plenty of reason to question if the simplistic nationalistic comments on those articles were made by wumao. Of the comments, there were a few conspiracy theorists but most of them were merely protesting that they believe the US government bears some measure of responsibility for protecting foreign consulates from such things.

        I don’t think the consulate burning story proves Chinese people can’t imagine their own doing something to them. It’s not like they don’t regularly read news about or joking suggest the disaffected should attack government buildings. It’s just common that people assume attacks on your country’s embassy is usually by another national.

        I also don’t think the consulate burning story helps prove that Chinese people can’t imagine their own doing something embarrassing, which is what this story is primarily about.

        • Germandude

          Correct me if I am wrong, but wasn’t the comment Terrik quoted already ironic/sarcastic?

          As in: Of COURSE it must’ve been the Japanese.

          • Kai

            There was a sarcastic joking comment blaming the Japanese in the SF church story but I think the comment Terrik quoted from this story is genuine.

            OR it is possible the commenter is not necessarily refusing to believe the women in this story were Chinese, just said “they were Japanese” as a joke, and is really just expressing general annoyance with other Chinese people always jumping to assume every story involving an Asian person doing something embarrassing is Chinese when the source material (some foreign report) doesn’t actually make clear the person involved is Chinese.

        • Peter Pottinger

          Look past the individual news articles and see there is a broad trend by our western media to libel and slander the Chinese race.

          When is the last you you saw “Italian cop shoots” or “Dutch dentist drills patient”

          No, its always “mexican” or “north korean” “islamist”, “chinese”, the ethnic groups and minorties the west are trying to surpress.

          Its all political.

          • Surfeit

            Fuckin A.

          • Germandude

            Mind telling me which countries you include in your “western” ones then?

            You certainly cannot include Europe into this group. While I agree with you that I cannot remember having read anything like “Italian cop shoots”, “Dutch dentist drills patient” for as far as I can remember, there is a simple reason for it.

            In GER & AUT, and afaik NL as well, there are media laws that forbid the mentioning of the wherabouts of criminal suspects & criminals as long as the wherabouts don’t matter for the news reader. Contrary to that if the criminal is local, his first name will be written out and his last name not.

            Criminal is German: “Murderer Christian K. from Hamburg…”
            Criminal is foreigner: “Murderer C. K. killed in Hamburg…”
            Criminal is foreigner and sent back because of different nationality: “Muris K. is sent back to Turkey because of crimes comitted in GER while not holding passport”.
            Criminal is German with foreign background: “Muris K. a German with Turkish background killed…”

            Nationality of criminals in the media is not to be mentioned as long as the nationality is not of interest to the case.
            Ask the German right wing parties how they think about it. I think it’s funny to accumulate the fines they had and will have to pay for mentioning foreigners in their propaganda webpages and flyers.

            So, who do you include in your “western media” generalization and conspiracy theory?
            Honestly, I can’t even remember an excessive targeting on it while having lived in the US.
            And please don’t mention FOX News as an example.

    • Insomnicide

      When Japanese people do something bad, the Japanese blame it on Koreans. And vice versa for Korea.

  • Lord_Helmet

    The newscaster never said anything about Chinese people, he said a group of people drove up in a $50,000 car. I don’t know why the Chinese netizens feel like it was Canadian media picking on chinese people.
    That lady who happened to be of Chinese descent appeared to be ashamed of what she was doing. She put her hood up, tried to run from the camera and was very nervous talking about the situation. My feeling is that she was trying to exploit this opportunity. I was actually surprised they were able to park the car without someone yelling “倒到“。

    • Lord_Helmet

      I will reply to my comment just found out that the person who set fire to Chinese consulate is indeed Chinese. Claims schizophrenia, voices inside his head telling him to do this. Reading the comments of the netizens, they seem to be paranoid that every country picks on them. You know what welcome to the party, your country is now a major power, get used to the shit talking.

      • Insomnicide

        Well, they’re not wrong. Every country does pick on them.
        Mainly because they’re an up and coming regional power, and now they’ve become a reasonably influential entity on the world stage. However to be fair to them, the hate is often wrongfully directed towards the ethnic Han Chinese as a people rather than the Chinese government or individuals.

  • nghz

    is ther ea reason i can not comment?

    • mr.wiener

      If you have a disqus ID your comment will load automatically, otherwise the Mods will have to check your comment to make sure it is OK.

      • nghz


  • bprichard

    I’m not even sure how bad condition and old a BMW would have to be to pick it up for $3,000. Maybe one of those boxy eighties ones?

  • Brad pitt

    Really? At least the old woman in SF looked like they could use the money… this is just shameful… But Revenge is sweet, she must be so ashamed now that this video has gone viral in China.

  • mr.wiener

    Just wondering, but if you have a sudden freeze which knocks out the power to people’s freezers, could you store the meat outside in the snow [provided it was properly bagged or boxed to protect it from animals]?

    • nghz

      absolutely, if you had something that would keep the racoons out…. but some people live in apartments that dont have anywhere to put the food. and then there are people who may not have been home at the time. im sure most people with half a brain would have done exactly what you suggest. but you would run the risk of being overrun by racoons. and then there is the risk of other people seeing a cooler in your backyard and taking it. its not like tere is a huge food shortage right now, people arent starving. the government was trying to help some of the people who were truely affected but this. and i think…. the point of this story is that soe people are taking advantage.

    • Joe

      Chinese people will take it

      • I just coughed up a lung. One day I arrived at our office in Silver Tower in BJ. There were people at the gate off of the 3rd ring road entry handing out free green tea stuff. When I got up to the office everyone’s desk was covered with boxes of green toothpaste, green pens, green shit in general. I asked what it was for, the answer was “It’s free!”. I asked if they liked green tea tooth paste and was told “No, it is very bad, but it is free”.

        I miss China. I need to go back. I am not being Ironic. 10 years there and 3 away – I miss this crap on some level. :-S

    • Kai

      LoL, I wondered the same thing.

    • nickhz

      what if someone wasnt home or couldnt return home because of the weather? there are also animals in canada that would rip through a box or a bag for meat or food of any kind… depending on where you are there could be black bears or racoons. both very good at getting food in that situation… and some people live in apartments and dont have a yard or even a balcony. this is my point. not everyone is in a position to need the cards but there are some who really are . and tose are the people who should be getting them

    • markus peg

      Harbin in China has its ice creams etc, outside on the street in boxes… (who wants to eat an ice cream in freezing cold weather though is beyond me lol)

  • Joe

    You can put lipstick on a pig, but it remains a pig. That is what Chinese people are in so many ways. They will always be peasants – even the wealthy ones. You cannot buy class when your culture breeds classness behavior.

    • mr.wiener

      Does this mean I’m doomed to a life of petty crime because one of my forebears was a convict?

      • Edward_Crowley

        I do wonder if elijah will comment, as it does concern canada, and his wife is technically half chinese?

        • Germandude

          Yeah, I haven’t seen elijah for a long time. Is he still around?

          • Kai

            He’s still around, he commented on the consulate burning post.

          • Elijah

            I don’t comment as often now because there’s not as much worth commenting on. Either that or I’ve gotten picky.

            To all the stalkers: It’s not stalking if you’re really meant to be together.

          • Edward_Crowley

            I do believe he has been posting, on and off.

      • Surfeit

        I think he’s relating to how society shapes behaviour, (I think there’s a word for that) rather than inherited traits.

        • Surfeit

          Socialisation; the process of inheriting norms, customs and ideologies; It may provide the individual with the skills and habits necessary for participating within their own society.

        • mr.wiener

          Nurture , not nature perhaps.

    • mei mei

      Do you just called us chinee pig? How ironic

    • Guang Xiang

      Stay classy, Joe

  • mr.wiener

    Are you referring to the old lady? The young attractive lady looked to be of African heritage.

  • ex-expat

    It is interesting how people have different mentalities. I personally was raised to not accept handouts. If you absolutely need it, sure, that is what it is there for, but if not, leave it for someone less fortunate. At various times over the course of living in China, I had some casual conversations with Chinese regarding 福利. They couldn’t believe when I told them that I would not take advantage of certain benefits back home, despite perhaps being eligible for them.

    Down vote this all you want…but I have lived in four countries, and travelled to many more, and have never seen a society quite like China. I do not mean that in a good way. There are great people and crappy people everywhere, sure, but the place where I have met the biggest, greediest, most dishonest 傻逼‘s, with the highest frequency, is 100% without a doubt the mother-fucking mainland. The world needs to watch out.

    • nickhz

      i have travelled quite a bit and have to agree with you in many ways, however…. i have never lived this long in a communist country before so maybe i was just never exposed on this level.

      • Kai

        You bringing up “communist country” as a possibly contextual reason for why many Chinese people are like this is interesting but I’m not sure how big a factor communism or the sort of governments that have come from communist pursuits is.

        Freeloaders and people taking advantage of the “free” or public goods or welfare really isn’t limited to the Chinese but some of the worst offenders are indeed Chinese. There’s always a sort of “If it’s free, why not?” sort of rationalization to it.

        It also bears remembering that while the news report happened to spot Chinese ladies in a BMW, you can be pretty certain they were hardly the only people or ethnicity to have gone to collect the grocery gift cards when they aren’t really strapped for cash or resources. That’s assuming there isn’t any merit to the defenses being made that people were led to believe it was a blanket compensation or relief program for anyone affected, and not strictly for the needy. I’m inclined to be forgiving if people didn’t know it was for the needy and the initial reports about the program didn’t make that clear (as many in the Canadian Chinese community are claiming). The SF church example is different, however, because I think it was obvious that was for the needy.

        • nickhz

          is this what you do? you follow someone around and twist the things they say to start an argument? you are a mod arent you? relax pal. all im saying is that i agree to a point with ex-expat…. but i could be wrong because i havent been as exposed to some other countries as i have here… go have a beer and relax. and your right (even though i made no mention of this) that they were not the only ethnicity to be shown going to go get the food cards… but they were the only ones showing up in a beamer to do it. its classless what they did. they didnt need government help and they abused it. and you are defending them. the woman was embarrassed to be there, it was obvious, she knew she shouldnt have been there yet you defend it. again mate…. go have a beer. take a deep breath. maybe get laid or something. you gotta relax

          • Kai

            You mean I happen to be reading the comments on this post at the same time you are. I was complimenting you on introducing an interesting factor to the discussion, so please stop feeling persecuted.

            Likewise, “relax pal”, all I’m saying is that I agree to a point with you, and especially with your hesitation to think something because you recognize you haven’t been as exposed to some other countries as you have here.

            I don’t think it’s fair for you to accuse me of defending them because I’m not. I do however think some of the things they are saying in defense is worth considering. I’m not in Toronto so I have no personal idea how the grocery gift card program was initially presented to the public but I do have a sense that these Chinese ladies were not the only “non-needy” people who went to claim them. Insofar as there’s a lot of public condemnation of Chinese people/culture/whatever as a result of this news report, I think it is fair to hear out their defense.

            I suspect you think I need to relax because you’re imagining me doing something I’m not actually doing.

          • ex-expat

            Honestly though Kai, your posts often come off that way.

          • Kai

            Right, and a lot of your comments come off as being unfair or worse to me as well, but let’s agree to read each comment carefully and then judge. And if we judge wrong, let’s agree to recognize our mistake and give each other a fair shake, right? I try to defend things when I feel it is warranted. I try to acknowledge valid points when they are made. I try to recognize what other people are saying even if I might disagree. I try to explain my disagreements. This should earn me a bit more patience than jumping to assuming I’m some sort of blind “apologist”.

          • ex-expat

            Lol I don’t think my posts are all that bad. I believe that you try to be objective, I really do.

          • Kai

            Thanks. Cheers.

          • Surfeit

            You guys were talking about different things after 1 or 2 posts.

          • nickhz

            fair enough mate

        • Lord_Helmet

          So your defense of this story is to claim ignorance? I think common sense and morals would play a huge part in this. And once again the newscaster NEVER said anything about their nationality, he simply treated them as selfish, immoral and ignorant human beings who happened to be Chinese.

          • Kai

            Christ, you guys are quick to assume defense. My point is that I don’t think this falls into “common sense” or “morals” territory. I UNDERSTAND some of you think it does, but I think context and how the program was conveyed to the public plays a very big role in influencing how people approach it.

            There’s a difference between “the government is providing grocery gift cards to the poor and desperate struck by this disaster” and ” the government is providing grocery gift cards to those whose food have gone bad as a result of the extended blackout and can prove that they reside in an area affected by that blackout.”

            We know the news report says the government is “reminding” the public that it is for the former, but I’m not so ready to assume the Chinese community is lying out of their teeth.

            If they were affected by the same problem, read the government was providing some relief to those affected, and all they needed to prove was residency in the area affected, I don’t see why its against common sense or morally questionable that they accept a government handout. Before you accuse them of “claiming ignorance”, you have to have be certain there’s no reasonable excuse for them to do so. We don’t know. All we have is ex post facto information. Maybe you guys have YouTube clips of the announcement on Canadian public TV before the incident? That would help us say in response: “no, there was reasonable reason to believe this program wasn’t intended for people like you.”

            I never said the newscaster said anything about their nationality. I’m not commenting about the original Canadian newscaster or news report at all. I’m discussing the matter in the context of it involving Chinese people as reported on the Chinese internet.

          • nickhz

            this is exactly the point Kai, you don’t see the difference while we do. the government in canada would never say ” for the poor people who cant afford food ” because that would be insensitive and we expect people to know what is right and wrong…. it is a moral question, when do you put others before yourself? in canada the answer from the majority is “as often as possible” can you say the same for the majority of chinese people?

          • Kai

            I disagree. You assume there was a difference and that they should’ve been aware of it, which thus makes their actions contemptible. I’m recognizing that I don’t have enough information to believe those things.

            Maybe you have reasons to believe the Canadian government would not make explicit who their welfare programs are intended for, but I’m pretty sure the Canadian government has been explicit in such things so I wouldn’t say “never”.

            It’s entirely possible they were explicit here too, but these ladies didn’t know. As Surfeit commented, maybe someone simply said they could get a card and weren’t told the full details? Or maybe they knew but are lying because they were caught out. Without evidence of what they knew beforehand, we might be blaming them simply because that’s what we want to believe about these people.

            I’m more inclined to give the benefit of the doubt in this situation than the SF church situation. That’s my read. I’m not interested in defending selfish, immoral assholes. I’m interested in being fair.

            I don’t think governments who are intimately aware of free-rider problems fear being insensitive by restricting eligibility for handouts OR “expect people to know what is right or wrong”. Governments have eligibility requirements and laws for a reason.I understand you personally feel this was obvious but I don’t think so based on the information I have.

            We don’t know if the women in this story or the other non-needy claimants had any idea of the program being intended for specifically certain people (poor, desperate), especially if the only requirement for those who claimed them was provision of address in area affected.

            I really think you should rethink what you may be inadvertently doing here: framing this as a Canadian vs. Chinese morality issue. The news report was careful not to make this racial/ethnic, but aren’t you buying into it being racial/ethnic now? Doesn’t that justify the fears of all the Chinese people who are afraid of this reflecting poorly upon them all? Don’t you feel you’re being a little too eager to establish that the “majority” of Canadians are moral but not Chinese?

            Come on, let’s not go down that road. We should figure out if people were knowingly taking advantage of a program that they don’t qualify for and condemn those who did because they’re a disgrace to themselves and possibly making anyone who shares a characteristic in common with them unfairly look bad.

          • nickhz

            you really dont get it. so this will be my last response to you. you can disagree all you want but anyone who has ever lived in canada for any real amount of time should know the difference, just like us who live in china should understand the culture here. i constantly hear that foreigners should understand and abide by the culture here. you obviously have not lived in canada. i said that the majority of canadians would put others first, i said this because i know from experience that it is true… i asked you if you can say the same about chinese people, that is a question kai, not a statement… now can you answer the question?

          • Kai

            I think you saying Canadians would know the difference or are more moral is kinda like the Chinese when they say Chinese are a people of hospitality. It’s more a reflection of what you want to believe than an accurate rerepsentation of reality. It can even become a sort of exceptionalism.

            I don’t put too much stock in personal anecdotes as justifications for wide-ranging generalizations about a people or a culture. For example, I know from experience that the majority of Chinese people genuinely try to be hospitable to foreigners they have as guests, but I’d be loathe to broaden that into some sort of indisputable characteristic of Chinese people.

            I don’t think the majority of Chinese people put others first. The thing is, I don’t think the majority of Canadians do either. What I can think of is certain socio-economic factors making people less selfish and more selfish, but then there are countless exceptions to those as well.

            I’m going to repeat what I think is my position here: “We should figure out if people were knowingly taking advantage of a program that they don’t qualify for and condemn those who did because they’re a disgrace to themselves and possibly making anyone who shares a characteristic in common with them unfairly look bad.”

          • nickhz

            you say you don’t think the majority of canadaians put others first, you are entitled to your thoughts and opinion….. but you are wrong

          • Kai

            Heh, I’m wrong in your thought and opinion. That’s fine with me. I just don’t think it looks good when people heap positives on themselves. Like I said, it’s like Chinese people who claim positives about themselves.

          • mopedchi

            I’m Chinese, grew up in Toronto, but now live in the US. Traveled extensively in China for fun and business. I generally agree with @nickhz’s comment about Canadians vs. Chinese people and “free shit.” I think @Kai just likes to argue with people.

          • True. You don’t take had outs. Simple aspiration in life for anyone that has grown on from being suckled to a teet.

          • Lord_Helmet

            I get it Kai but I really think there is common sense at play. How does this scenario go?
            ” Hey Auntie they are giving free shit away at the supermarket”
            ”Well let’s get the girls and go there”! says Auntie
            (20 minutes later the whole crew is in the car) one of the girls whispers ”why are they giving free stuff away” in unison they laugh and shout “Who gives a shit! It’s free!“
            Followed by terrible driving and seed chewing.
            I just can’t imagine how many people they elbowed and cut in line before they found out there were no more cards.

            Seriously though, wouldn’t you ask why something is free? I definitely don’t have a BMW and I would not recieve or ask for a handout unless it was absolutely necessary. Common sense would tell me that it is and needed by people in a desperate situation. Especially after experiencing that winter storm.

          • Kai

            It reflects poorly on you that you’re inserting so many stereotypes about Chinese people into your hypothetical. It’s petty.

            Why do you think they didn’t ask why something is free? By all accounts we have so far, they knew it was for people who lost food due to the blackout caused by the storm. What we don’t know is if they knew it was intended specifically for the poor, for which they don’t qualify.

            If rich people can take tax cuts and rebates or class action settlements, so can two Chinese ladies in a BMW if they thought they qualified. Come on, we all know plenty of people who love free shit. There just isn’t enough information to invoke a “common sense” argument here.

          • Lord_Helmet

            Reiteration of your same weak point.

          • Kai


            I feel I’m recognizing what we don’t know in order to make a fair judgement. I feel you’re treating your personal assumptions as known fact in order to make a judgement.

            Your hostility is surprising to me because I thought we had a reasonable exchange here.

          • Lord_Helmet

            Please don’t take it the wrong way. I am not angry or hostile at all. I am sorry if you were offended by my immature stereotyping. Enjoying the convo.

          • Kai

            Actually, when I said hostility, I wasn’t referring to the immature stereotyping. I addressed that in my previous reply to it. Hostility was about you characterizing my point as “weak”, especially without any actual argumentation for why it is “weak”. I think what I’m saying is pretty rational even if people’s suspicions lean them towards disagreeing.

          • Lord_Helmet

            I would say dismissive not hostility.

          • Kai

            True, though dismissiveness can be interpreted as hostility.

          • Lord_Helmet

            Intent can be interpreted as ignorance. We made our cases. They are just scenarios. You are playing the ignorance card, I am playing the intent card. Either way, what happened is still not correct. Maybe you do need to calm down.

          • Surfeit


          • Surfeit

            That’s aimed at this whole conversation btw. Not specifically Lord_H.

          • Kai

            If you have time, let me know if you think my research into how this unfolded, and thus conclusions, is fair:

            I don’t think my being interested in getting to the bottom of this so that the people and ethnicities being judged get a fair shake is me overreacting and thus needing to calm down. You’ve been on this site long enough to see a lot of unfair shit-talking, and not just aimed at Chinese people. All that shit-talking can be upsetting. I think my response is better than lashing back with unfair to racist generalization about those making them.

          • Lord_Helmet

            Great research and sourcing. I still can see my opinion being justified through your research. Yes, they probably did experience hardships just like everyone else at the time and honestly I don’t know shit about these people.

            I can only stand by my own moral compass; knowing that if I am able to overcome a struggle without a handout then I will. The handout is the last and final resort.

            Now, driving up in a beamer does not help their case. The way I see it, if you still have a house, spending money and a car, you are far from in need. “Did you need a card?” woman replies “not really but if they had them……”(Can’t remember and the video won’t play anymore)

            I understand your point of view and I appreciate it. I am just skeptical of this, and the reason for this is because of the recent news stories and I fucking live here.

          • Kai

            Thanks for considering the information I am going by.

            I think if it were me and I was reading the government announcements on the government site, I would’ve noticed the “in need” and paused to think about what that might specifically mean (presuming the posted notices were not subsequently edited for clarity on the “in need” issue). I’d do so especially with the second bulletpoint specifying what individuals and families get.

            I’m giving the ladies and anyone else who claimed the cards the benefit of the doubt as well as defending them against moral indignation here because it is unreasonable to deny that there is arguable ambiguity in the notices, greater ambiguity in the mass media reporting of the program, evidenced ambiguity by other non-Chinese Canadians, and the necesary recognition that these women most likely learned about the program through word of mouth. When it comes to word of mouth, the chances of imperfect information is great. The person who told them may not themselves know that the program was intended for the needy (as opposed to it being general “compensation” to all affected) and thus may not have commuicated that to these ladies. The ladies therefore may have walked into a situation in legitimate and reasonable ignorance. To not consider this plausibility and insist on condemning them is unfair.

            One thing that is apparent from my research is that it is also unfair to declare that this was widely known as a “handout” given how consistently it was presented as “compensation”. I know many people who avoid handouts and those people are to be respected. I know almost no one who categorically avoids compensation. The public presentation and understanding of what this was as either a “handout” or “compensation” must be considered.

            As I’ve replied to others, I fully recognize that the BMW doesn’t make them look good. However, that is a circumstantial detail that has no bearing on whether or not they were consciously trying to take something that they KNEW to be intended for those less fortunate. The helicopter footage also shows many other entirely DECENT vehicles parked and lined up for that location. I think I saw only ONE old-model sedan that looke kinda run-down (lower right of the scene).

            I also addressed the interview with the lady in a reply to someone else, maybe Elijah. We have to consider how they were ambushed with the interview, which is very different from how the news crew interviewed the people in line. The interview begins with the reporter asking if they “really needed” the card. She should be acknowledged for answering honestly, for not arguing that the government owes her one or something, but her answer also introduces the very real possibility that she had no idea up until that point that the cards were limited to the needy.

            If everyone else who claimed a card or inquired about getting a card were arguably of poor economic status and a person or household of “need”, we could be skeptical of this lady’s ignorance. If everyone else knew, why didn’t she, right? Problem is, they were hardly the only ones who were not in need who claimed the cards. There were many other people who also didn’t know. The media reporting at least requires us to give all these people the benefit of the doubt.

            I understand how people, myself included, will be biased by recent news stories and things we’ve experienced that stick out in our memories with misleading vividness. I really do. But I also have to recognize that I recognize that and be fair to people when things get serious and people are getting unfairly indignant.

            Again, thanks for considering the reasons and evidence for my disagreement with you and others on this. In the context of the cS commenting environment, I really appreciate the acknowledgment and basic courtesy. Cheers.

          • Lord_Helmet

            How would you explain the womans reaction then? Hood up, trying to avoid the camera, nervous rant(maybe camera shy, I get it)…”my friend told me there was free cards” that is like a teenager telling his parents “there not my drugs, I was holding it for a friend”. It is a cop out. I know it, you know it. Good talk though.

          • Kai

            Hood up: Cold weather? If I have a hoody, I’d don it in cold weather after coming out of a heated building.

            Trying to avoid the camera, nervous: As you said, general shyness or nervousness in front of cameras. I get pretty self-conscious in front of a camera. Many people I know do too, especially if a news crew suddenly comes up to you and sticks a camera in your face out of nowhere and you have no mental preparation for going on camera.

            What she said isn’t dispositive either. What does “my friend told me there were free cards” say except that a friend told her there were grocery cards here.

            Please try to understand that I’m not blind to how easy it is to assume the worst about the ladies. I think in my comments on this post, I’ve made that very clear. I just think there may be plausible reasons for these ladies not necessarily being bitches who explicitly knew these cards were for poor people and didn’t give a shit because they’re that selfish and immoral.

          • Elijah

            I’m pretty sure the proposed scenario was just meant as a parody mash-up of common behaviours seen in the socially-insensitive. Replace auntie with redneck and seeds with tobacco and it still works.

            In any case, I personally know how sadly common this happens here in Canada. It’s possible to claim cultural ignorance based on length of time spent in Canada, but it’s a weak defence at best and can only be claimed the first time.

            Kind of like not knowing that spray-painting an ancient temple in china is a no-no. Stealing from the needy is a no-no in Canada.

          • Kai

            I’m pretty sure you can see how the parody can be considered petty and offensive in the context of this situation.

            He acknowledged this and that’s good enough for me.

            I personally know how sadly common a lot of unsavory behavior by expats are in China but I don’t indulge in meanspirited stereotyping just because an opportunity presents itself. In fact, I’ve often criticized those who have as being unfair and petty as well.

            As you hopefully have come to understand from my other comments on this thread, I’m giving the ladies the benefit of the doubt that they did not necessarily understand that this as for the needy, not just anyone who was affected in the area, and thus can’t be held as morally blameworthy as someone who we are certain knew and consciously did not care.

            I believe there is a different expectation of “common sense” when it comes to whether or not we should respect historical temples versus a program that was rushed and arguably vaguely communicated to the public, not only by the criticisms of the opposition party but also from the admittance of the people responsible for the program themselves..


            Please understand that I’m as critical as you are of people who scam. What I want to be sure of is that these women were scamming before we lynch them and then broaden their sin onto their ethnicity in general. Presuming they are scamming just because they drove a BMW or–worse–are Chinese isn’t fair in my book. I don’t think it is in yours either.

          • TAKE5

            Kia, i am with you, but I keep thinking about those other Chinese Ladies in san francisco getting food they knew was intend for the poor then throwing half of it away. This is dose not support your argument. I cant say all Chinese women or aunties are that low down but clearly some of them are, and these two got caught in the act.

          • Elijah

            No I don’t suspect them because they’re Asian. I suspect them because the culture they associate with (ie: one of the most important influences in their lives) tends to produce a prodigious percentage of people who profiteer off the pain of the poor.

            Just like how I don’t assume someone is an aggressive, gun-happy bible-thumper because they have a Southern accent, there just happens to be a lot of people that match that description.

            There is a chance (albeit fairly small in my opinion) that these ladies made an honest mistake. However there’s an equal (and larger given the obvious) chance that they are abusing the system. No one can deny this, no matter how large the blinders they wear.

            EDIT: PS Thank you for the rational and intelligent response.

          • Kai

            Your response seems kinda odd, a bit like splitting hairs. We could interpret, for example, your first paragraph as saying “I don’t suspect them because they’re Asian, I suspect them because they’re from the Asian culture”. In many contexts, the use of “Asian” is shorthand for “culture associated with”. Do you understand what I mean about splitting hairs here?

            If not, nevermind that, let me rephrase: You’re still justifying your suspicion based on your subscription to stereotypes of their identity instead of any actual evidence of wrongdoing or intent to do wrong. You’re saying you suspect them because of other people like them and that’s enough for you.

            “No I don’t suspect them because they’re black. I suspect them because the culture they associate with (ie: one of the most important influences in their lives) tends to produce a prodigious percentage of people who are involved in rape and violent crime and are incarcerated.”

            Does that help you see the problem with your rationalization? If you associated “people who profiteer off the pain of the poor” with “culture associated with by Asians”, and then associate “culture associated with by Asians” with “people who look Asian”, you’re effectively suspecting them “because they’re Asian”.

            How about this one:

            “No I don’t suspect them because they’re laowai. I suspect them because the culture they associate with (ie: one of the most important influences in their lives) tends to produce a prodigious percentage of people who are involved in casual sexual relationships and placing their parents in retirement homes.”

            Keep in mind that the specific “negative stereotypes” is irrelevant here. The important part is the structure of the rationalization as it is accepted by the rationalizer.

            If we find that rationalization offensive when applied to other targets, why do we use it for our target of choice?

        • Peter Pottinger

          You have no idea Kai do you? North American media is currently using China as a scapegoat for many unrelated social issues because our american overlords demand we mislabel and slander China to assist in brainwashing us to believe china is the “bad guy”.

          This is the American governments fear of a rising asian power, and in the face of the coming currency wars they need your full support to commit its atrocious crimes and starting the propaganda now will ensure the next generation is as simple-minded and nationalistic as the last.

          You sheep are so easy to control.

          • Alexander

            The American media doesn’t single-out China. The American media is equally as critical of Russia, probably even more so than they are of China. According to the American media, everything in China, Russian and Iran must be negative.

          • Peter Pottinger

            Now you are starting to see the media are simply puppets of a puppeteer government.

          • Alexander

            Yeah, I think Kermit the frog and Elmo might be in on this puppet conspiracy….

          • sfphoto1

            The Western media, owned and controlled by the Western capitalist ruling class, performs the dual function of mass entertainment and mass propaganda, in order to control the minds of the laboring masses so that they can be trained into becoming cannon fodder for the Imperialist Wars being planned by the Western capitalist ruling class against the Third World, all for the sake of the New World Order.

          • ScottLoar

            Did you write this sentence yourself? If so there must be an award or recognition for the longest run-on sentence linking together banalities and cliches. Yours is the highest imitation of 1930’s Soviet-style Newspeak.

          • sfphoto1

            Thanks for your compliment. But I hope you got my point.

          • Germandude

            Spreading nationalism in the media. Hm, let me think:
            USA, Greece, Italy, Japan
            Countries in the decline
            Country in the rise

            Today Russia is on the decline, tomorrow they are rising, no idea what to assume about Russia as long as Putin is there.

            Nationalism is the medicine for the poor and ignorant. A pretty simple medicine for any government to shift people’s interests from local conflicts/problems to intruders/disruptors from abroad.
            I’d say USA and China are most guilty of it for years.

          • Zappa Frank

            ridicules… western medias are not government controlled, they do care only about one thing, audience.

          • sfphoto1

            All these race-baiting slander is nothing more than an insidious attempt at preventing the inevitable rise of China as an economic, political and military power. The West is already in terminal decline, beset by an aging middle-class population, unproductive welfare class, rapacious corporations outsourcing whole industries, corrupt politicians beholden to money politics.

          • Germandude

            Interesting to see that China is increasing its wealth by copying western concepts, isn’t it?

          • sfphoto1

            Not exactly. More like learning from the West to avoid its mistakes, such as Democrazy and Capitalism.

          • Zappa Frank

            so in decline that Chinese keep on immigrating in the west…

          • sfphoto1

            You mean the Chinese crooks? They are in bed with the Western capitalist ruling class. You know the old saying: birds of the same feather…

          • Zappa Frank

            no, I mean Chinese common people. Some even in not so bad condition.. If you like to think we are starving ok, but the truth is that the life’s quality is by far higher in the west and things will unlikely change in the next future..

          • sfphoto1

            Frank: I live in China. Most Chinese people, the common people in the streets, still love China and don’t want to leave China to settle in a foreign country. Maybe the immigrants who have left China for Western countries did so because they felt that life is better in the West. But I think that sample is so small that one could say they must be sufficiently biased against China to abandon their own homeland altogether. In fact, the people who do so are considered disloyal and despised in China. Just because a country is poor, backward, corrupt, etc. is not a reason to abandon it. If that were the case, then all citizens of poor countries in Asia, Africa, Latin America should pack their bags and emigrate to the West. On the contrary, the people who are willing to abandon their homelands must have their motives seriously questioned by their host countries. After all, if these immigrants don’t love their own countries, why should they love yours?

          • ScottLoar

            Let me help you understand.

            First understand the US corporate tax rate: “The combined federal and average state tax rate of 39.2% in the US (in 2013) was the highest of any nation in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development”.

            Next, for 2013 look to some of the companies you mention:

            Microsoft paid US$5.2 billions in US taxes
            IBM paid US$5.3 billions in US taxes

            Apple paid US$13.1 billions in US taxes
            Chevron paid US$20 billions in US taxes
            Exxon Mobil paid US$31.0 billions in US taxes

            Perhaps it hasn’t occurred to you that companies “outsource” to bring goods and services more cheaply and efficiently to the consumer who is increasingly part of a global market. This not only increases the productivity of the company but also enhances competitiveness (and the US follows the capitalist rule of comparative advantage unlike China’s state corporatism) which many in business believe fosters and supports research and development, or continuing innovation and creativity if those words suit you better.

            You seem wholly ignorant of the costs of business, so let me again help you understand: If cheap labor were the key to industrial success then Bangladesh should be the most industrialized nation in the world. Obviously it’s not. Also, most corporations in the US such as GE, Microsoft, and Apple are responsible to shareholders for returns; those shareholders are the source of monies invested for returns unlike, for example, state banks in some East Asian countries which use government funds (largely taxpayers’ monies) to create and maintain state corporations, many of which are notoriously inefficient as shown by the amount of non-performing state loans. The US shareholder (maybe you are one) expects a return on investment, and it is the responsibility of management to run a profitable business. Now, is that greedy and corrupt? Do you think a corrupt manager of a public enterprise can long withstand quarterly reviews by shareholders and annual financial audits? Unlike those in, for example, China who are political appointees without practical business experience.

            I could counter your ridiculous assumption that the West is in terminal decline but… say, why not do some homework? Look at the average GDP of the West, the value of their combined economies and amount of manufacture and world trade, then compare it with any other country or region you choose. Maybe you’ll have an epiphany.

            America’s immigration policy ensures it will not face the aging population that is already besetting China but, again, do your own homework by comparing the aging populations of both countries extrapolated over the next 30 years or so and see which populace is growing much older much faster with fewer to support it. Unlike your propaganda, this is simply demographics at work.

          • sfphoto1

            East Asian countries that have imported Western-style
            democrazy have seen the same kind of dysfunctional politics that afflict Western countries because then public policy becomes corrupted by money politics. In Japan, Taiwan and South Korea, politicians are treated like prostitutes because they peddle influence to the highest bidder just like in Western Democrazies. Indeed, that’s what Western politicians are – political prostitutes – who are paid to serve the interests of the Western capitalist ruling class.

            The Western financial crisis was triggered by the greed and corruption of the bankers and financiers to the Western capitalist ruling class. What followed next was even more greed and corruption as the same bankers and financiers had to be bailed out by the Central Banks of West who have resorted to Weimar-style money printing, effectively “swindling” the Western middle classes of their hard-earned cash savings.

            If you don’t call that greed and corruption, then what is? A bunch of old ladies falling in line for bread crumbs?

          • ScottLoar

            “Western politicians are – political prostitutes – who are paid to serve the interests of the Western capitalist ruling class.”

            Yes, I do think you sincerely believe your own propaganda. I warn you, though, that insisting on such platitudes invites a devastating cognitive dissonance which you can hardly reconcile when reality smacks you in the face. Yep, I’ve seen it happen many times among mainland Chinese students and visitors, and the more strident the more severe the consequences to their image of themselves, their culture and their country.

          • Germandude

            Wouldn’t it be easier to simply point out the obvious? As in: “Politicians of the Chinese Communist Party are -political prostitutes- who are paid to serve their own interests since they are the ruling class without anyone else having the ability to challenge their power”.

            And: Nobody should call this greed and corruption, but people should call it “The Chinese dream”!?

          • ScottLoar

            Less and less do I look for argument here because so much opinion is founded on popular hearsay (and expressed in cliches and platitudes) and propaganda. I’ve tried to counter such nonsense with factual references but… No, like most forums those who squawk the loudest perch highest in the trees. By the way, I’d rate the ignorance and prejudice in equal proportion among those who are Chinese and those who are not, both showing an astounding lack of critical thought and knowledge on the very subjects they bring up.

          • Germandude

            I absolutely agree with you. And even worse so, everybody constantly falls back into this dumb “Us against Them” scheme.

            Write sth against the Chinese government, or sth that bothers you about Chinese culture, you are labelled a racist.

            Write sth in support of a governmental action, or Chinese culture, or show that certain things are shared between “East” and “West” and you are labelled a “commie lover” or other absurd words.

            Most people here tend to only be able to judge in “black &/or white” because of limited horizons.

            Note that I don’t put you into this “profile”,ScottLoar. I always thought you are a voice of reason, no matter if I am in agreement with you or not.

          • ScottLoar

            I reciprocate with respect.

            There are some, and like you I surely don’t always agree with them, whose comments are knowledgeable and reasoned, but I don’t enter here expecting much more than the occasional good find among the flotsam.

          • linette lee

            You are still in Shanghai Germandude? When are you gonna invite me for a drink. hahaha.. lol.

          • Germandude

            Yes, still in Shanghai. Are you here on vacation?

          • linette lee

            no no no, I don’t have family in Shanghai nor do I know anyone in Shanghai. I wouldn’t know where to go in Shanghai. I don’t think I will ever go to China.

            Merry Christmas and Happy new year to you. I hope you and your family enjoyed your holidays.

          • Edward_Crowley

            Shanghai is not so bad, but yes, the smog is worse these days.

            What do you do in the USA>

          • linette lee

            I work for a big USA company. Something do with Science. :)

          • sfphoto1

            Germandude: I admit there’s rampant corruption in the PRC. Sure, the CCP folks have become filthy rich. But how much did they steal? Millions, billions? Let’s compare that to the systematic looting of public resources by the Western capitalist ruling class just in the last 10 years, starting two Imperialist Wars in order to enrich Oil Companies, Defense Contractors, Commodity Traders and Financial Speculators. And just how did they do it? By using Western politicians and the Western media to do the warmongering for them.

            How much are we talking about here? We’re talking trillions of dollars. So if we define corruption as the misappropriation of public resources to serve private interests, then the Western capitalist ruling class wins hands down.

          • linette lee

            Is this the Scottloar that I chatted with before? A white gentleman who married to Chinese woman who can write Chinese and studied Chinese from a HK professor?

            How are you. Long time no chat.

          • ScottLoar

            Dear Linette, yes, it’s one and the same, the same old me, but the Chinese came from a succession of old-school professors from Beijing.

            You are in Shanghai. Too bad, because I’m leaving Shanghai tomorrow morning, not to return for the next two months. Really, I’ve got chills, a scratchy throat, runny nose, it’s time to get to Penang.

          • Guest

            Not really a sensible time to head to thailand, is it?

          • ScottLoar

            Penang is in Malaysia.

            No, I get no smug satisfaction in telling you that.

          • Edward_Crowley


            One of the best books ever. Seriously, is there any chance of the body, the ex governor, winning the presidency?

        • Paul Schoe

          Wow Kai, serious pictures in your link to IndoBoom

        • David

          Sometimes it is hard to know where to put a comment. since there are like 50 comments replying here about money and politics I will stick it here. Don’t take it as a criticism of any you said Kai.

          The entire point of being able to contribute to a campaign in a western democracy (lets use the U.S. as an example) is people use the money they earned (whether they are a cab driver, doctor or CEO, unless they are a drug dealer, they earned the money) to support the candidate whose views are closest to theirs. OF course big money contributions help a lot but generally speaking the money only get astronomical when you are talking about presidential elections. I hear a lot of people write about politicians being the prostitutes of big business. I do not think these people have actually ever worked on a political campaign. I think they get most of their information from people they trust telling them such things.

          I have worked on local and national elections as a political volunteer in local and national elections and while money definitely helps, a strong ground game (i.e. volunteers) are much more important. This is why ares with strong unions elect democrats so much, not because they simply vote fr them, the unions get their people out going door to door handing out flyers and s=registering people.

          I have baked hundreds of cookies to give out to morning commuters at 5:00 am on a freezing Monday in Chicago in the winter at train stations. The candidate was right there with me shaking hands and showing people he deserved their vote. Big money is great for television commercials but for anything less than a Senate seat, posters and personal connections are more important than t.v. ads.

          While there are certainly politicians who are corrupt (makes the news all the time in America), it has been my experience for more than 30 years that the majority are doing what they do because they think it is helping their country, state, county, city or town. Even with the last two elections (I did not vote for President Obama so I am not defending him) the majority of money was given honestly by people in small donations (and a few huge donations which were illegal and had to be returned when they were discovered) just like with President Bush and President Clinton.

          I say again, while there are certainly always local exceptions to the rule (Chicago probably has the last real big city political machine, but while they stop Republicans from being elected, they still tear each other up in the primaries to be the party nominee), most political campaigns are won with people helping, not simply spending money because that is what is needed. Also, to be honest, most politicians tend to have pretty big egos (feeling they can personally make a difference for the good of the country) and would be insulted at the idea of somebody else telling them how to vote. This is not

          While I have studied politics in other countries (European and Asian countries) I have not personally participated in any so I will not pretend to speak for them. So don’t be so cynical, make your voices known, people (yes even individuals who can not write a $1,000,000 check) can make a difference.

          • sfphoto1


            I’m sure there are lots of Americans who actively participate in the political process in order to make their voices heard, such as this group called Health Care for America Now (HCAN).

            According to its website, HCAN is a “national coalition of more than 1,000 groups in 50 states representing 30 million people. We work to promote, defend, implement and improve the Affordable Care Act (ACA) at the state and federal levels, protect Medicare and Medicaid, increase corporate accountability and confront forces that seek to take away critical services.”

            This is what they have to say about the for-profit insurance companies opposing ACA:

            “THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY USED every tool at its disposal in its unsuccessful bid to defeat the historic Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which was signed into law by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010. The health insurers laundered millions of dollars through front groups and deployed an army of lobbyists to pressure members of Congress to oppose any law that would interfere with their ability to continue imposing excessive premium increases and denying consumers needed care. America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), the industry trade group devoted to preserving its members’ profits, used scare tactics to make its case. For example, in October 2009, on the eve of a key vote in the Senate Finance Committee, AHIP warned that insurance premiums would soar if the health care legislation passed.”


          • David

            You talk about profits like they are a bad thing. Those companies profits allow the companies to grow and they pay dividends to the shareholders (such as me and you and many retired people trying to get by). I do not think a company being profitable is either immoral or unethical. But I am not here on Chinasmack to argue about the ACA. I have done that in person in town hall meetings and I will leave those arguments there where they are appropriate. I ran an insurance brokerage for 20 years before I retired to be a teacher, so I am very familiar with the insurance part of health care (and since I retired long before the ACA went into effect I have no skin in the game for or against it for profit). I want people to be involved. Preferably they would get information from a wide selection of sources (after all everybody can’t do their own research) before taking a stand. BTW by doing well and being profitable, those companies keep people employed and provide them with health insurance. BTW every quote you made were from people (of the political party) who supported the ACA and being made against people/companies who were against the ACA, so you would certainly expect those sorts of comments. I also, don’t think I ever said there were no such things as lobbyists in Washington, of course there are. They can also be a problem if they are left unchecked, but they are watched and the most egregious of the lawbreakers get investigated quite often (maybe not quite often enough) but that is a problem with the enforcement, not the system.

          • sfphoto1


            Thank you for your reply. You are entitled to your beliefs as I am entitled to mine. The U.S.A has its own system of government. And so does China. You Americans mind your own business; we Chinese mind ours. Simple, isn’t it?

          • David

            I don’t think any Americans are trying to start a revolution in China, but as I do live here what happens here both interests and affects me. I appreciate seeing your point of view also. I think that is the positive aspect of CS, even when I don’t agree with people I get to see what they think. Do you really think the Chinese government ‘minds it’s own business’? That they do not try and influence other governments (as do the U.S.). You know they have been caught many times contributing large amounts of money to politicians and political parties in the U.S. to affect laws. I think this is much more intrusive than a simple individual posting his lone opinion on an internet forum.

          • sfphoto1

            “I don’t think any Americans are trying to start a revolution in China.”

            I am not implying that you are and I am sorry if I gave you that impression. I respect your decision to come here and live in China and I hope you enjoy your stay here.

            And one last thing, the Chinese Communist Party believes that the State and not the Market bears the moral responsibility for the healthcare of its citizens. Dr. Norman Bethune, a Canadian who became a National Hero of China, believed that the practice of Medicine for profit corrupts such an honorable profession:

            “Medicine, as we are practising it, is a luxury trade. We are selling bread at the price of jewels. Let us take the profit, the private economic profit, out of medicine, and purify our profession of rapacious individualism. Let us say to the people not ‘ How much have you got?’ but ‘ How best can we serve you?’ ”

            Mao wrote an eulogy to Dr. Bethune when he died in China in 1939 which still read today by every school children in China:

            “Comrade Bethune’s spirit, his utter devotion to others without any thought of self, was shown in his great sense of responsibility in his work and his great warm-heartedness towards all comrades and the people…We must all learn the spirit of absolute selflessness from him. With this spirit everyone can be very useful to the people. A man’s ability may be great or small, but if he has this spirit, he is already noble-minded and pure, a man of moral integrity and above vulgar interests, a man who is of value to the people.”


          • David

            Since thisand brought in seems to be an area you are interested in I would appreciate you opinion about healthcare in China. I must admit it is ne of the things that has surprised me the most since coming here a year ago. I assumed most socialist societies had socialized medicine. However, I have had friends who have first hand experience with “pay first or you get nothing” and I have read many news articles (some right here on CS) about people being turned away from even emergency care because they have no money. A friend of mine broke his arm last year (compound fracture with the bone sticking out of the skin) and when he got to the hospital they refused to even give him pain medicine (let alone x-ray, set the bone and put it in a cast) until he called his wife, who was out of town, and she took a train home to bring 10,000 yuan for the start of the treatment.(she did not arrive until the next day so he had to spend the night in pain from the break). I know at my school they take out about 2500 yuan a month for taxes, including insurance and I have an ‘insurance card” in case I have an accident. What is the deal with healthcare in China?

          • Kai

            Hah, your comment speaks of things entirely unrelated to what I was saying so thanks for the headsup that it isn’t really for me. Pro-tip though, use the @ mentioning featuring to mention the people you want reading your comment. When you type @, a list of names will show up that you can choose from and if those people have Disqus accounts, it’ll notify that a comment was directed at them. I’m vaguely aware that there was a conversation about what you’re talking about on here somewhere whose participants are the ones you intend to read this.

          • David

            lol thanks for the tip. I was trying to follow the argument up the food chain to the first reply but I must have gotten lost along the way.

      • Alexander

        I don’t think you can blame it on communism. Post-1980s China doesn’t follow strictly follow Marxism, its very much a free-market now in many respects. Also, there are many Russians, Macedonians and Cubans who lived under the Marxist-Leninist system (pre-1991 Soviet Union/Tito’s Yugoslavia) and you don’t see that many Cubans, Macedonians and Russians in North America behaving in such a manner. So I don’t think you can really make this behavior as some connection with communism (Marxism).

        • Kai

          Like you, I’m not too sure how much commuism can be blamed. But China still had a lot of government welfare programs involving a lot of lining up to get your allotment of something even past the 80s. I bring it up only because it’s a common context to why we imagine people of communist countries to be scramble for shit.

          How many Russians, Macedonians, and Cubans do you know? Of the three, I’d say the Russians might have had the most similar socio-economic experience as many older Chinese. Cubans are particularly problematic depending on whether they actually lived under the system or were early refugees (who are sometimes quite wealthy). Florida?

          • Alexander

            There is a large population of Russians and Cubans in the United States. In certain areas of the country there are also numbers of Macedonians and people from the other republics of the former Yugoslavia. So its not as tiny as a number as people might think.
            I think the United States offers more welfare programs than China does in many respects. For example, some states offer 100% free dental care for pregnant women. Some states offer a program called WIC (Women, Infant and Children) which provides pregnant women, babies and children up to age five with grocery coupons so they can get things like free milk, eggs, bread, vegetables, and baby food. Also the United States provides free education for pretty much anyone in the United States from kindergarten to grade 12. So it doesn’t matter if you are a US citizen or not, you can still enroll your children in free education. I don’t think children who are not Chinese citizens can attend grade school for free in China. So I would contend that America might be more of a social-welfare state than even countries with a former Marxist ideology like China or Vietnam.

          • Kai

            Hah, yeah, the US political system is quite socialist and Europe even more so. However, I was more referring to the experience of scarcity and having to get yours while you could because there might not be any left that is infamously associated with the planned-economy foibles of attempted communist states.

            I’m familiar with Cuban communities but not as much as Russian or Macedonians. I’m sure people of that background are in the US, I’m just wondering if they’re actually comparable here as a juxtaposition to why Chinese people are often seen doing such things. I’ve met some mean old Russian grandmas with some pretty questionable morals but I can’t say the same for Cubans or Macedonians. Just less exposure personally.

          • Zappa Frank

            I agree that communism may be involved and I can say I’ve noticed the same kind of behavior in a lot of ex-socialist east Europeans. My personal explanation, obviously arguable, is that to live under communism makes people more cynic and in the end more egoistic.

        • nickhz

          fair enough…. i guess i can agree with that…. so where does this behavior come from?

          • Alexander

            Your guess is as good as mine. I am guessing that in areas of massive populations ( or people who are used to living in areas of massive populations) this type of behavior is more prevalent because the competition for resources is more fierce. You probably could compare it with nature. If you have a million mammals living on just 1000 square kilometers of land it is more likely the competition for resources would be more fierce than a million mammals living on 100,000 square kilometers of land. Just look at what often happens during a black Friday sales event in the big cities, people get trampled over just to rush inside the stores to get the best deals. You see it in New York City, but you don’t really see it happening in places like Lincoln, Nebraska or Savannah, Georgia.

          • ex-expat

            I think that no one factor is responsible, but more of a “perfect storm” of different things that have all come together. The Cultural Revolution/Great Leap Forward, a government that encourages nationalism and instills certain beliefs, a feeling of a “lost” period of time and the subsequent need to catch up, and a general lack of religion, amongst others…

          • don mario

            they are called the chinese communist party, there is nothing wrong with calling them communists. just some people nowadays think they have a free market now so it doesnt apply anymore (they don’t)

            where does the behaviour come from?… yea.. the other part of that name.. the chinese part, that’s where it comes from!

        • don mario

          so what are you gonna do? they didn’t fit the text book communist definition at the beginning either. they are called the chinese communist party, and the hidden party controls basically everything, that’s fits well enough.

          • Alexander

            communism is a system based on Marxism, or like in the Soviet Union it was based on Marxism-Leninism. The CPC remains in control but they don’t really follow Marxism. Yes, they didn’t change the name of the party when they changed the system, but just because something looks like something doesn’t mean that’s really what it is. A dolphin looks like a fish, but its not a fish.

          • don mario

            yea and before they didn’t fit the definition either, unless you think killing millions of your own is a successful application of that. they evolved, they are still communist, in more than name only.

          • Alexander

            Failed reforms which resulted in mass starvation is exactly what it is…failed reforms. Communist ideology based on Marxism-Leninism and command economics as opposed to free-market economics are very different. If you think that today’s free market China represents Marxism, then you need to review some writings by Karl Marx and also an intro to macroeconomics book….

      • 5000 years of history

        Somebody please explain to me why does everyone keep saying China is communist? Before Deng, yes. Where is an example in China right now that would support the claim China is communist?

        • Wodowsan

          China is still a socialist state because the party owns most major resources of the nation. The banks are all state owned, power companies, the phone companies, the gas stations, the internet, television, newspapers, major industry are still publically owned, although very often only controlled by one family. No one owns their own land. You can buy an apartment, but you can only own it for 70 years. It then goes back to the state. Sure you can easily start a small business in China, but become too successful, you will find yourself shut down or taken over by your competitors quickly who have ties with the party.

          • 5000 years of history

            Socialist ……..

        • Zappa Frank

          what’s communist? simple, the party..

        • don mario

          if you don’t know why then go read a book or something. ‘the party’ are running the whole show down to the finest details.

    • sfphoto1


      This is just race-baiting. You know very well that Deng’s reforms turned Mao’s communism on its head. The problem is not mainland Chinese per se but the kleptocratic system that has emerged since then. With the ideological vacuum came amoral nihilism which is what you’re complaining about. In sociological terms, it’s called anomie. Nothing new here.

      America went through the same process 100 years ago when millions of semi-literate peasants flooded into the East Coast, creating all kinds of vice, crime, filth, corruption, abuse, etc. The Anglo-Americans exploited the “white coolies” so thoroughly that today’s white Americans don’t even know where they’re from.

      I could say the same thing about the welfare class in America, most of whom are white. But that would be race-baiting, ,wouldn’t it?

      • ex-expat

        You are right that the shortcomings of mainland Chinese culture and society are circumstantial and largely a result of past events as opposed to inherent personal qualities. I have nothing against the Chinese ethnicity, or even mainland Chinese people. In fact, I have been dating one for the past four years. But regardless of why things are the way they are on the mainland, the sad truth is that, in my opinion at least, certain behaviors are more widespread there than in other societies.

        There are crappy people everywhere (across the entire socio-economic spectrum), and America is no different. Though I disagree with your statement that the majority of the welfare class in America is white. All of the statistics that I have seen indicate that about 38% are white, with blacks comprising another 38%. Even if your statement is correct, it doesn’t really matter, as that is besides the point. The Chinese women in the article are driving a BMW, so what does welfare, or the United States, have anything to do with it? The story is about Chinese in Canada.

        • sfphoto1

          I guess you’re right: whites and blacks are about even when it comes to being welfare recipients in the U.S.A:

          But there are lots of rich, white people who take advantage of the system as well such as those belonging to the Corporate and Financial elites. When it comes to the misuse and abuse of public resources for private gain, most Chinese immigrants, including those pictured above, don’t even come close to what those in power are guilty of,

  • Germandude

    If the car has had no accidents, the mileage is at around 100,000, I am sure the value is more likely to be considered at $ 30,000. In Europe at least. Not familiar with the 2nd hand car market in NA/CAN

    • hess

      166139 RMB in sweden (179000 SEK)

      • Germandude

        Which is approximately USD 27,000, so I wasn’t too far off.

  • Surfeit

    Seems to me like someone told them ‘go down there, they’re giving out free shit.’ I don’t think they really knew what the deal was. It’s a bit harsh to hate on them for that, especially since others in the report also didn’t look too hard done by.

    • Kai

      I’m inclined to agree, at least for ladies in the news clip, but it’s possible that they’re playing stupid though I don’t think nervousness in front of a camera is a certain tell.

      Either way though, they look really bad now because whatever their possibly entirely blameless reasons were for going there hoping to claim a card, they’re now seen as having gone there to take assistance meant for the needy, suggesting greed, selfishness, and a lack of conscience.

      Judging by the Canadian Chinese community’s reaction, they do feel that’s unfair.

      • Surfeit

        I think many people are judging these actions on premeditated reputation. It’s nonobjective news and I don’t get why people can’t see that; White propaganda for the masses.

      • Elijah

        Judging by the Canadian-Canadian community’s reaction, they do feel that it’s about time that stuff like this gets some attention.

        Come to Canada to become part of Canadian society, not to use it. By March, my wife will be Canadian. Period. She refuses to live in any (insert country here)-town/ville/city/etc.

        How many filthy government officials/corrupt business people and their friends/family are living it up here in Canada when they don’t deserve to live in the same country as decent people?

        • Kai

          If Canada is a country of decent people, would the Canadian-Canadian community think it is decent to wrongly to unfairly persecute two Chinese ladies and possibly the Chinese-Canadian community overall simply based on their suspicion and predisposition to believing they were scamming? Is the evidence of other non-ethnic Chinese Canadians also being unclear about the elegibility of the program not to be considered in how much censure should be directed at these ladies or the larger ethnic-Chinese community?

          I agree that people should become part of the society they immigrate into and not merely exploit it. I agree that there are many corrupt people from China living it up in Canada. Neither of these are relevant to whether or not it is fair and legiitmate to persecute these ladies when there are mitigating factors to be considered, or the overall Chinese community just because of stereotypes.

          Please, Elijah, tell me you understand the validity of the points I am making. Whatever your personal-experience-based prejudices are that has engendered these suspicions in you, you are rational enough to know the limitations of what you are saying, right? No one is asking you to not blame the blameworthy. I am asking you to be sure the target is indeed blameworthy before casting blame.

          • Elijah

            Of course I understand your points, I’m not daft (even while high it seems).

            Unfortunately, the problem with stereotypes is that they can be based on reality. It’s a slippery slope down to prejudice, bigotry and then hate which is why it should never be taken seriously. However, to ignore the existence of certain behaviours in people with a certain mindset is to complicity allow them to continue to abuse the system.

            Are these people all chinese? Of course not. Are all chinese these people? Again, of course not. Do chinese people have a cultural predisposition towards this behaviour? Anyone with time in china will say yes.

            Now people can argue that I have a cultural bias and they’d be right if they said about anyone, obviously. However that doesn’t negate the fact that certain cultural traits are negative (male/female circumcision, exotic animal trade, less rights for women, child soldiers, etc.). And unless these traits can be highlighted and removed, than cultures will stagnate or worse fester.

            My solution is pretty simple, mix the cultures (and DNA, cause HOT…) so that the negative can be bred out and the positives passed on.

          • Kai

            I’ve always recognized that stereotypes have basis. However, if we use stereotypes to justify suspicion of an individual, do we then use it to justify condemnation of that individual?

            However, to ignore the existence of certain behaviours in people with a certain mindset is to complicity allow them to continue to abuse the system.

            True, but don’t we have to establish that the individuals in question actually HAVE that certain mindset?

            Was that done here?

            Please don’t mistake my position as arguing for the extinction of stereotypes. I’m not unrealistic; I know why they exist and frankly believe they have to exist. as a function of how human thought processes work.

            My position is simply the perhaps vain hope that people recognize that they are substituting stereotypes instead of an objective inquiry into the actual relevent facts and context of the situation here with these women.

            For many, it was enough to see the Chinese ladies, their BMW, their admittance that they don’t need the cards, and the reporter saying this was for needy people. So very little, if any, benefit of the doubt was given EVEN after reading the Chinese-Canadian community’s defense and arguments that were translated and presented above. People were SO sure of their judgement, because they remember this or that about Chinese people and culture.

            Note, this was true of the Chinese netizens too.

            Naturally, I don’t like one ethnicity of people unfairly suspecting and condemning another ethnicity on the basis of stereotypes. But more than that, I just don’t like how easily some people refuse to give enough benefit of the doubt to stop, consider, and acknowledge the relevant context or facts, and instead double-down on their judgement/opinion/suspicions.

  • Cauffiel

    Why does not having power make free groceries necessary.

    • nickhz

      when your power goes out for 9 days everything in your refrigerator and freezer will go bad. and for those people that rely on the food they have to feed their families that is a big deal, so the canadian government wanted to help its people. the people who are truly in need

      • Cauffiel

        Does not make sense.

        1. The power going out does not make all your money spoil.

        2. I lived in Michigan for 10 years. When the power went out for a long time in the winter, we put our food outside or in the garage. Anyone who lives in a cold climate knows to do this.

        3. Who’s got 9 days of food in their fridge? What spoiled, the condiments? Mustard’s ok for a while.

        4. Power outages do not suddenly make people needy when they were not before.

        • Surfeit

          Number 4!

        • Elijah

          As I mentioned above, leaving food outside is a very good way to destroy it.

          Freezers are temperature-regulated for a reason, weather patterns fluctuate too quickly and randomly. This leads to thaw and re-freezing which leads to freezer burn which leads to worthless food that’s damn near impossible to cook and nutritionally worthless even if you can cook it.

          People who HAVE money in the bank don’t NEED a hand out because they can afford to replace the food.

          On the other hand, people who live at or below the poverty line won’t be able to and will therefore not be able to survive. Those kinds of people don’t usually have a car (too expensive to buy and keep), let alone a near-new BMW suv………………………………

          How are people confused about any of this?

          Some people need help and other don’t. Those who don’t need help shouldn’t take that help from those who don’t, otherwise they are morally reprehensible. End of discussion.

          • Cauffiel

            Christ, I don’t think you more than skimmed my post, so whats the point in replying?

            Freezer burn does not affect nutrition of food, and it is not caused by freeze/thaw cycles, its caused by sublimation of water on exposed areas of food for extended periods of time. So, both those assertions are wrong (science!).

            I’ve lived in cold climates a long time; putting your food outside in the dead of winter does not destroy it unless the food is sensitive to freezing… such as cabbage.

            I can’t figure out **how power outages make poor people less able to afford food.** I don’t buy the food spoilage explanation.

            This is very different from I can’t figure out **how some people are poor and others are not.”

          • Elijah

            Yes, I was confused as to the name of the damage that occurs when food is thawed and re-frozen and was not yet sober enough to google the term (still not really!). In any case, the damage to food is real, so that assertion is correct.

            However, you may be forgetting that not all food is meant to be frozen and should be kept cool. That’s what the large part of the refrigerator is for, it’s fairly useful. In fact, most food is stored there.

            Which means that in the case of a blackout, the food comes up to room temperature and spoils quickly. I suppose the smart thing to do would be to open all the doors and windows so as to lower the temperature of the room the fridge is in, but that seems like it might be uncomfortable to the occupant (what with the freezing rain and windchill).

            Strange enough, the very poor don’t seem to have a lot of food in their homes, so when what little they do have spoils, it tends to really disrupt their lives, specifically basic nutritional needs.

            Now, I know what you’re thinking, “Their bank accounts aren’t frozen”. You’re absolutely right! Physically at least, metaphorically is a funny story that ends more and more sadly the closer you look into it.

            HOWEVER!!! They have soup kitchens and food cupboards to go to (when they’re open) so that they can wait in line (for hours sometimes), wondering what they’ll be forced to accept (because the same leeches are always there before everyone else waiting for first pick).

            Seems you only read (skimmed?) the second part of my comment.

          • Cauffiel

            Ha… thanks for staying of the search engines when drinking, drunk googling is dangerous to you and other netizens.

            I still don’t get who would keep more than 3 or 4 days of food in their fridge, but more power to them I guess. And I am sorry you have misunderstood my comments.

          • Kai

            My parents have 3 fridges and a large pantry. They shop at Costco, so I can easily imagine people having more than 3-4 days of food in their fridge though I can imagine a fridge being emptied out of food within 3-4 days for a family. Lots of factors.

            If it were me, I’d think of storing perishables outside (in a garage, car, or on a balcony) as well, or at least the freezer items. I’d worry about cooler items like vegetables that would be arguably ruined if they froze solid. But I might prioritize the consumption of those. I wouldn’t worry too much about wild animals for cars and enclosed garages and a little less for balconies if they are fenced or raised, but it’d probably still make sense to seal them up in something. That said, most residential areas of Toronto isn’t exactly like camping in the middle of Yosemite.

            There would be a problem for anyone living in apartments without balconies or a reasonably enclosed area to stash food outside without fear of it being randomly stolen by animals or other people. If you’re afraid of people or neighbors stealing your food in this situation, that’s a discredit to some of the proclamations here of Canadians all knowing Canadians to be decent people and having enough trust in them that only Chinese immigrants would be so ignorant of “cultural norms” and “common sense” in Canada to possibly not consider the needs of others.

            There are too many possible living situations but beyond that, we have to recognize that some people simply did not think of it. While we can blame them for their ignorance, it’s probably not fair to get too mean about it. If I’m going to give the benefit of the doubt to the Chinese ladies that they didn’t know the program was limited to the needy and not just everyone affected by the power outage, I’ll be sympathetic to those who didn’t know or simply weren’t able to minimize their grocery losses due to their fridge losing power. I think this is fair and reasonable.

          • Cauffiel

            My parents are nuts. I’m the youngest of four and I moved out over 10 years ago, and they still stock their fridge for a family of 6. They definitely have 9 days of food in their fridge, but they are also not poor at all.

            At any rate, I originally asked not “why do poor people get free stuff” but “why does a power outage make free stuff more necessary than no power outage.”

            Elijah and whoever the other guy is framed their responses to suggest I asked the former. I have no idea why.

          • Elijah

            I rarely if ever drink.

            I prefer herbal remedies.

          • Cauffiel

            Puff puff pass.

        • nickhz

          does everyone have a garage? who wouldnt have 9 days of food in a deep freeze over christmas holidays? the better question is ” do you have a brain?” so they sould go chip ice off of a tree somewhere and put it in their freezer? and then when that ice melts in a few hours do it again? if they are even home to do it… the fact that you only have condiments in your fridge or freezer just shows the level stupidity we are dealing with

          • Cauffiel

            You are very abusive. Poor people are lucky to have you on their side.

  • Surfeit

    Yellow (ish)

  • markus peg

    Yes, disgusting, but remember not to take the actions of the few to represent the many.

  • Insomnicide

    Is America a totalitarian country now?

  • Insomnicide

    I’m not exactly an expert on this, but i have a suspicion that these two women are possibly related to corrupt officials or corrupt corporate businessmen.

    • Kai

      Hah, possible, but an X3 is pretty low-key. The ones I loathe are those in fucking supercars.

      • markus peg

        Maybe they arrived in the X3 because that is their “poor/est” car.
        Still bad camouflage when parked next to other cars in that car park though…

        • Kai

          Hah, yeah, it’s possible they’ve got a RR Phantom chillin’ in their heated garage (wait…chillin’ and heated?).

          From the helicopter overhead shot, dude, most of the cars in that parking lot aren’t exactly junkers. Some of the people waiting in line also have some decent Adidas gear.

          • markus peg

            Having been to China every time i see Adidas i read it adidads lol I love the fake names, SQNY is another great one. a bit off topic, but i read your comment incorrectly as adidads and burst out laughing i had to comment

          • Germandude

            adidas is the correct writing while Adidas is the incorrect way.

          • markus peg

            adidads (dads with the 3rd d) is a copy cat name for adidas

          • carmouflagger

            Dolce & Banana is by far the best one.

      • YourSupremeCommander

        Is your last name Ju?

        • Kai

          Given your commenting history, I’m not sure how serious your question is. Either you’re wondering if I’m someone you know, being anti-Semetic, or making a random joke about Pacific Rim.

          • YourSupremeCommander

            Kai Ju! It is you! My mod brother by another mother!

    • Surfeit

      You’re an expert on satire!

  • seahorse

    Canadian here. If this happened in Toronto we were recently hit with an ice storm that took out 1/3rd of the electricity in the city for a few days so some people’s food literally spoiled over CHRISTMAS, so the city is giving people who were without electricity over the holidays 100$ for the groceries that went bad. Some people spent Christmas in the Police Stations because it was too cold to be at home and some people lost all the trees on their property to ice damage.


    I’m Canadian. Almost every year a ‘disaster’ like this happens. I put disaster in quotes because it isn’t as bad as hurricane, tornadoes, earthquakes etc. What I know is that these food cards are 100% intended for people with little or no disposable income who lost food. The program might have not been explicit in the details but that is what it’s for. It’s an unwritten rule to not take things if you’re not in need. And especially when it wasn’t a serious disaster! Why then would our media confront these women? Canadian media is pretty transparent and usually has no bias either. These women were either completely ignorant or trying to scam and get free food. Can you say this was the first time a mainland’er did something like this?

    • Kai

      Thanks for weighing in.

      I don’t think the media confronting these women proves that there is a known but unwritten rule that these women should’ve known and may have intentionally disregarded. That’s like saying someone is guilty because someone accused them of guilt.

      Your last rhetorical asking if this was the first time a mainlander did something like this is also unfair. It’s an appeal to bias/prejudice fallacy. Should we assume black people are guilty of something just because it isn’t the first time a black person is guilty of something?

    • Teacher in China

      Her accent sounded pretty smooth, but there’s really a chance that she’s a new immigrant who just didn’t know any better. How many times have you seen free food being offered to people in China? What’s an “unwritten rule” in Canada to Canadians born and raised in the culture will be something totally foreign to someone who has just moved there.


        Canadians are lucky enough to have government aid and programs in place to help the less fortunate. The unwritten rule is to not work the system. When you move to a new country you have to adopt at least the bare minimum of their cultural norms. I believe this situation falls under this category. I don’t have the same expectations while living in China as I do when living in Canada.

        • Teacher in China

          Yes, but you can’t expect someone to adapt instantaneously and perfectly. People aren’t robots who can just download a new OS. She made a mistake. Big deal. Given all the attention this has received, I’d bet she’s learned the unwritten rule very clearly.

          • BRENNAN GRANT

            I believe that this shouldn’t be a learned trait to have, it’s common sense. I just think it’s a general trend with said people. But I agree, she definitely understands now.

          • Elijah

            Between all the passengers of that BMW, they couldn’t scrape together a basic understanding of the culture they’re currently living in?

            Slap at least 3 foreigners in a taxi in china and at least one of them should know some basic chinese and local customs. It’s basic mimicry of locals, not rocket science.

          • Germandude

            LOL, it’s common sense to get a brief idea of customs of the country you are visiting as a tourist, let alone you stay longer or even immigrate.
            If you don’t understand common sense or cultural norms in the most basic of scopes, why even leave home?

            (not directed at you personally btw)

          • Elijah

            When in Rome, do as the Romans do.

            Except in the chinatown part…

          • Zappa Frank

            I still remember a mother in Rome threat his son saying: “if you don’t stop i’ll give you to Chinese”.

          • Kai

            Mimicry of the locals isn’t that solid of an argument. You’re presuming there were no “locals” of decent means also lining up and claiming the grocery cards when there in fact were.

            The argument has to be that they knew the cards were for the needy and that they did not qualify yet attempted to get the cards anyway.

          • Elijah

            I’ve never denied that there are people with scummy attitudes in all ethnicities, doesn’t negate their probable guilt in my opinion. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

          • Kai

            Right, and I wasn’t saying scummy attitudes in other ethnicities negates anyone’s guilt, or that two wrongs make a right; I was just pointing out why your argument of “basic mimicry of locals” is faulty.

      • Elijah

        Based on the fluidity of her speech, I would guess that she’s been here in Canada for long enough to become at least near-fluent in English, which means that she will understand the English word “need”.

        Ignorance is hardly a defence here. We’re not talking about some vague and/or obscure cultural point, we’re talking about a very simple jump from “Don’t take what isn’t yours” (universal morality) to “Don’t take what you don’t need, especially if others REALLY need it” (what should be universally understood).

        • Teacher in China

          That’s a lot to guess from one or two sentences of English that could have been learned anywhere in the world, including a university in China.

          I think ignorance is a fine defense. There are lots of ignorant people in the world. Some friend says “Hey, you can get some free shit from this place” and she says “I like free shit” and goes without thinking. Simple mistake.

          • Zappa Frank

            even if she is just arrived I think is impossible she really honestly believed that those things where intended for people like her… or in the same way she may think that free meals in churches missions are just cheap restaurants, poor people aids are super-convenient stores.. and so on.

  • Smith

    There are over 300,000 ethnic Chinese living in Toronto. Race has nothing to do with it. Are we to believe that not one of the white, black, or brown people there are also taking advantage of the system?

    • Surfeit

      Now that would just be thinking logically. We can’t have that.

  • Teacher in China

    Yeah if you buy a used car for $3000, it’s going to look pretty shabby, especially in Toronto which is one of the richer cities in the country (I’m from Canada, btw). There’s absolutely no way that was a $3000 car. And that comment of “BMWs are not for rich people in China” or whatever was just completely ridiculous. Was I missing some sarcasm there or something…?

    Yep, I think I’d have to agree on your main point. Doesn’t take a genius to figure out that this kind of thing is intended for people who are truly suffering. I guess if she’s a new immigrant maybe she hasn’t acclimatized to this kind of thing yet; not too often people give away free food in China. Anyway, she sure came across as cheap and heartless.

    • Kai

      While its true that there can be nice cars found in older neighborhoods, that guy’s comment is pretty ridiculous.

      Some of the comments about the car is more about saying the car doesn’t matter if eligibility for the cards wasn’t known to be limited to the poor as opposed to anyone who had suffered the blackout.

      But some of the other comments about the car are just stupid, like downplaying its relative value.

      Judging by her English, I doubt she’s a recent immigrant. As I have commented elsewhere, I’m not so sure it’s common sense that this kind of thing is for people who are truly suffering. It’s not hard to see this as possibly small compensation for an inexcusable interruption of an essential public good like electricity.

      The Chinese ladies in the video may not even be thinking this far but if we’re going to damn them, we just need to know if they knew it was for poor people but decided to grab it for themselves anyway. I’m not sure we have that information, only suspicions based on what we think of rich Chinese people.

      • Teacher in China

        I think to someone who grew up and lived in Canada their whole lives, it’s common sense. Someone who was born and raised there wouldn’t need to be told that this was for people who really needed it, not just a freebie for everyone to take advantage of. But someone who has only lived there a few years and/or maybe not quite adapted to cultural norms might not be able to see that yet. Lord knows I get caught up in socially awkward situations here in China often enough because of my inadequate understanding of Chinese cultural norms (and because I’m somewhat socially retarded, even in my own country…)

        • Kai

          Your benefit of the doubt for more recent immigrants is fair. I’m still cynical about humanity in general and believe it’s hardly just immigrants who claimed the card despite not being poor.

          • Teacher in China

            Yeah I thought about that after I posted yesterday, and I should have been more clear – there would be some Canadians doing it, but I think it would be considered a tacky thing to do. There would have been just as big a problem if the people who came out that BMW were white pure bred Canadians (whatever that means…). There are always those people who don’t clue into things (see my “socially retarded” comment earlier).

    • Peter Pottinger

      even a used bmw especially one that looks nice will sell for no less than $20,000

  • YourSupremeCommander

    To all you ignorant haters, this is called working the system. If you know how to do it, you would be able to make a nice living using your education and/or businees skills, and then on top of it all you get free stuff from the government. Being able to work the system is the difference between them and you.

    I have seen plenty of times outside of NYC and other major city gov assistance offices, Chinese and Russians and some times Latinos pull up in new Benz and BMWs. Heck, I know personally someone who makes 6 figures a year and still gets about $2000/month in gov assistances.

    If you work it right, you’ll be that much ahead of others. If you don’t, shut up and get back to your cubical cause all you are doing is making money to pay your taxes.

    • YourSupremeCommander

      If you down vote, you must be feeling the pain of the truth and upset that you are not smart enough to play this game. LMAO.

      • Lord_Helmet

        That’s hilarious!! Let’s live a life with no morals, fuck everybody else!! You are a douche. Funny post though.

        • YourSupremeCommander

          I have never said it was a good thing to do, now have I?Playing the system to get ahead and not get caught takes brains, admit it fool.

          • Lord_Helmet

            To admit that would make me a fool, everyone gets caught sooner or later. You are advocating it, your friend sounds like a loser to be taking advantage of a system that is in place for people of need. #yourstilladouche.

          • YourSupremeCommander

            Remeber what Joe told you, just keep petting it, one day it will get bigger, I promise you little boy.

        • Elijah

          I think you missed his sarcasm, so did I at first glance.

          • YourSupremeCommander

            It wasn’t meant to be sarcastic… was only telling the truth, a truth these people do not see.

    • moeimoei

      hahaha, while I don’t agree with you, your post did make me LOL!!!! I DID NOT downvote btw….good luck with working the system!

      • YourSupremeCommander

        Did I mention anywhere that I too was working the system? The imagination of these people here is killing me.

        • moeimoei

          sorry, I didn’t mean to kill the SupremeCommander….you truly are the great one!

        • moeimoei

          …but why not work the system when you think it’s so beneficial? don’t you think you are missing out?

          • Elijah

            You missed the obvious sarcasm in his first post.

            Supreme Commander is not advocating for every to act like scumbags, he’s explaining the scumbag mentality, big difference.

          • YourSupremeCommander

            Thank you! Why is it so hard to tell these people 1+1=11?


          • Elijah

            It’s my day off and I’m stoned and I could still pick up on it and make multiple logical comments about the topic.

            Maybe everyone else has better bud?

    • Edward_Crowley

      It does make it right…people earning that much do not need help from the government.

  • moeimoei

    This is what I was referring to in the “Chinese in San Francisco” post!!! OMG I was so embarrassed when I heard this!!!! Why Why WHY???!!! Do you really need that $100 when you drive a BMW???!!!!

    • Surfeit

      Take care of the pennies, and the pounds take care of themselves.

      • Elijah

        That’s a heartless defence of what amounts to theft from a charity.

        • Surfeit

          No, that’s you misinterpreting exceptional satire. Furthermore, ‘theft’… ‘a charity’… Perhaps we’re reading different stories.

          • Elijah

            Taking what you shouldn’t, helping those in need, perhaps we’re using different dictionaries.

          • Surfeit

            I understand your frustration but I’m disposed to mention that they didn’t take anything. Likewise the ambiguity surrounding the press releases further highlight questions over who the coupons were intended for.

            Along with these observations I believe the difference between ‘charity’ and ‘a charity’ are significant and not to be belittled, even for arguments surrounding moral code and ethical issues.

          • Elijah

            I appreciate the well worded and argued response.

            Technically, no they didn’t take anything, but why would they be deterred by publicity if they really needed it? Most of the people down at the Mission or Salvation Army would be more than grateful to have their slice of life seen by others. It’s really, really, really, REALLY hard to survive or even understand unless you’ve been through it.

            As for charity, I would never belittle something that should be cherished. Without a sense of charity, corporations would rule even more than they do now.It’s needed in order to balance out the evils that are greed and waste.

          • Kai

            The interviewing of her was very different from the interviewing of the other people. She had just come out and the camera crew went at them asking them if they really needed the cards.

            She answers honestly that she doesn’t but she was told that they could get one. Now think about the many possible and plausible scenarios you can extrapolate from that. She didn’t say “my friend told me even if I’m not poor, I can get one too”. She didn’t say “my friend told me this is for poor people but they’re not checking closely so you should totally go get one; it’s free money!”

            All she said was that her friend told her she could get one.

            Does this tell us she knew the program was for the needy? How is this complicated by the widespread reporting of this as “compensation” for the power loss open to residents of the area who only need to provide their address and number of members in their household?

            You have to ask yourself why you are assuming the worst absent enough direct evidence of malicious or dishonest intent.

            The BMW, the nervousness in front of a camera sprung on them, all of these things are circumstantial details that are interpreted with ex post facto certainty that the program was intended for only the needy. The program was only announced on the 30th, they were there on the 1st. Other Canadians were claiming them without any evidence of need. Public reiteration through the media that it is only for the needy was done AFTER people began complaining that they couldn’t get cards. There is no certainty that these women understood that the program was for the needy and media reporting of the program lends a meaningful credence to this.

            It is even plausible that the first time she had any idea that this program was limited to the needy was when the reporter ambushed her and asked if she “really needed” the cards. That may have been the first time she thought, “oh my, it was meant for the needy only, and not open to everyone in the area?”

            I’d be pretty embarrassed upon learning that, embarrassed for not knowing and thus looking like an asshole, but I’d think it unfair if people were attacking me on the assumption I knew but decided to be a heartless bitch anyway because I’m also ethnically Chinese and there have been ethnic Chinese people who have done such a thing before.

            There just isn’t any evidence that these women were the only people who got cards without understanding that it was intended for the needy. If they were, then we could be more skeptical of any claim of ignorance, because if everyone else knew, while possible, it is that much less likely they didn’t know. However, the opposite is true, they were just one example among many, and to the chagrin of the Chinese-Canadian community, they were the ones who were put on TV.

            Judging by your response, I don’t think you understood what @disqus_0FTJ2VMT0Q:disqus meant in his last paragraph. He’s not belittling charity whatsoever.

          • Elijah

            1. I never said that Surfeit was belittling charity, that was obvious in his clear defence of it. Where did you infer that? If that’s your understanding, then you have the wrong idea of me.

            2. I’ve never said that shady dealings were exclusive to chinese people, so race has nothing to do with this. I think it happens to a greater extent than normal based on first and second-hand testimony, but that’s a cultural arguement that will end with hair-splitting which I have little interest in generally speaking.

            3. 3 middle-aged women in a luxury suv arrive on the very first day despite the initial reports clearly saying “need”. I doubt they heard about it from a friend as that’s not much time to act on gossip. The woman see a camera, gets nervous and then returns to the luxury suv after only a few moments with nothing. These facts on their own paint a fairly compelling picture and that’s without pointing out ethnicity, race, cultural background, etc. Someone who needs it would have stayed to get a card, they would have talked to the camera about it, of these 2 facts I am absolutely certain based on broad experience.

            4. What would have happened if the camera wasn’t there? It’s all just speculation of course, but what’s our gut feeling say would happen? They would have asked if they should be there to someone else? They would have figured it out by at least looking around (supposing their innocence)? They would have taken the card without a second thought? Do you think they would have lined up again…….?

            5. It seems that you and I agree on the validity of each other’s points (or at least I hope you agree as I do), but have still cast our lot in one direction or the other. So we’ll have to agree to disagree on the probability/possibility that their intentions were less than pure.

          • Lord_Helmet

            Totally agree with points 3 and 4.

          • Kai

            1. Your last paragraph in your reply to him appears to address his paragraph about charity but doesn’t seem to make sense to me. The best I could do was interpret “As for charity, I would never belittle something that should be cherished.” as you accusing him of belittling charity. If I’m wrong, I apologize for misunderstanding but maybe you or him and explain to me your own understandings of what the other was saying?

            2. I never said you said shady dealings were exclusive to Chinese people. What are you responding to here?

            3. Actually, the Chinese ladies arrived on the second, possibly 3 days. Only the Indian lady was filmed on the first day by this crew.

            I already addressed what complicated people from understanding it as only for the needy/poor.

            Incorrect, incomplete, misunderstood Information is usually worst near the beginning, but my point is that the program was launched very quickly, information was arguably ambiguous, and information as relayed by word of mouth is even less reliable. All this requires us to give the ladies the benefit of the doubt that they did not know the cards were meant only for the poor/needy.

            Many people who are guilty get nervous in front of a camera, but people who are nervous in front of a camera are not all guilty.

            Just because they don’t need it doesn’t mean they were there to abuse the system. That’s circular reasoning. You do realize that it is actually to their credit that they didn’t feign need to get the cards, right? It actually supports giving them the benefit of the doubt that they didn’t know it was for the needy and likely thought it was just something they could get as affected residents. They were told there were no more cards so instead of staying to demand one, they simply left probably because while it would’ve been nice to get free money, they didn’t think it worth their time to stay or line up.

            So I agree someone who needs it would’ve stayed and been happy to complain on camera. That they didn’t does in fact prove that they don’t need it, but it doesn’t prove that they were intentionally trying to abuse the system. For that, we need to ascertain what they knew about the program or what they were told that prompted them to visit that location. You don’t have this information so you are judging not on any actual evidence. At best you have assume-the-worst interpretations of circumstantial details like their car and nervousness in front of the camera. You have to recognize that there are entirely innocuous and very plausible alternative interpretations.

            4. I see you’re trying to make a “caught red-handed” argument. For that to hold, you still need compelling evidence that they knew the program was for the needy but there are too many equally if not more plausible explanations. Not a single detail is damning WITHOUT an assumption of guilt. You think their behavior on camera is damning BECAUSE you assume they are guilty. You think them not staying to get a card is damning BECAUSE you assume they are guilty. You assume they would’ve done something else if the camera wasn’t there BECAUSE you assume they are guilty.

            It’s entirely plausible that if the camera wasn’t there, they may STILL not know the program was meant for the needy and would’ve tried again the next day. Hopefully the news reporter asking them if they “really needed the card” actually clued them into realizing maybe the program isn’t actually open to or intended for them.

            Your appeal to gut feeling is an appeal to bias and prejudice, not directly-relevant facts and evidence.

            I’m not sure why you think they would’ve figured it out just by looking around. You’re misakenly assuming the only other people who went there all obviously look poor when in fact there were entirely non-poor people getting cards too. Elijah, when I mention this, it isn’t to accuse you of thinking only Chinese people were abusing the system, it’s to remind you that the other people may not have made it clear that the cards were just for poor people. If these ladies saw other non-poor people driving entirely decent cars (again, see if you can make out the cars in the parking lot in the overhead helicopter footage), it would’ve made it even less clear this was only for poor people.

            5. I’m getting increasingly worried about what points you think I think are valid. I’ve challenged a lot of the points or arguments you’ve made. Maybe you can list what points you’ve made that you think I recognize as valid for us to be sure?

            To be clear: I agree there is a possibility that their intentions were less than pure. I don’t believe the actual evidence we have suggests it was probable that their intentions were less than pure.

  • Peter Pottinger

    Its not only Chinese people who are cheap and abuse any sort of welfare system.

    its a mindset of entitlement among many in our current generation. Those who depend Government welfare has reached critical levels, and I’m not only talking about the poor and homeless but also the fat cat MPs, police, teachers, mailmen, basically anyone who depends on the government receives way too much in relation to those who work hard to support themselves and shun government welfare.

    • hess

      “fat cat MPs, police, teachers, mailmen” hahaha what the hell did i just read? cops, teachers and postmen sure dont make a lot of money here in sweden at least, then again they might in the us.

      • Foreign Devil

        Cops and teachers in Canada make about 80K average. Averages salary is 45K I believe. They also get amazing inflation adjusted retirement packages that most private sector contract workers could never dream of. Not to say I think they should receive less. . rather. private sector should aspire to get back to the same levels of compensation.

        • hess

          i found around 70k to be average for teachers with 15+ years experience while checking google and looking at multiple sources, still not bad though.

      • Peter Pottinger


  • Peter Pottinger

    You are clueless if you don’t think the “Democratic” governments don’t control the strings of their media too.

    Everything from News, to Sports, Reality Shows, Movies, even auto biographies are geared to influence your perceptions according to how the elite feel you should act and think.

    And sadly .. it seems to be working

    • nqk123

      u should listen to npr more

  • Kai

    The news report says they filmed the older Indian lady first on “Tuesday” which should be the 31st. The “today” and “this morning” may be Wednesday January 1st in the new clip, or Thursday.

    The above article suggests the program started Tuesday.

    Here’s a post from the Ontaria government site from December 30th:

    Gift cards will be available starting Tuesday, December 31st at the following Ontario Works Toronto offices for people in need who have experienced hardship and have lost food due to the prolonged power outages during the ice storm.

    You can quibble about “in need”, “experienced hardship”, and “have lost food due to the prolonged power outages. I’ll grant that “in need” should be a cue that this is for poor people, not rich people, but I know plenty of people simply felt they “experienced hardship” and “lost food”.

    Now, it’s very unlikely that most people found out about this through the government site. So looking at media reports:

    Published December 30th, first paragraph:

    Ontario retailers and the provincial government are offering gift cards to compensate residents who lost food to spoilage during power outages caused by last week’s ice storm.

    “Compensate” though at the bottom:

    Other details about the program:

    – Residents who’ve had a prolonged power outage and who need help will be able to collect a gift card at one of 15 Ontario Works Toronto offices beginning tomorrow and ending Friday.

    – Families in need will be eligible to receive a $100 gift card. Individuals in need will be eligible to receive a $50 gift card.

    – Residents are asked to bring confirmation of their address and will be asked to declare the number of people in their household.

    A good argument can be made for “who need help” and “in need” above. However, it’s hard to rely on people to have a uniform definition for whether or not they “need help” or are “in need”.

    On Monday, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne announced that more than $200,000 in gift cards will be handed out to Toronto residents who had to throw out spoiled food as a result of last week’s ice storm.

    Not enough emphasis on the cards being “needs-based” There’s a lot of emphasis on it being for “residents who had to throw out spoiled food” due to the storm.

    Even Huffington Post seemed characterizes the cards as for “people who lost food”.

    Genevieve [email protected]

    Premier says in terms of “need” for grocery card all ppl will need to show is that they lived in affected area and how many ppl at home #s

    This is the least clear about the limitations of eligibility to the program. The responses to her tweet may also be indicative of how people understood the program:

    Brett Watson [email protected] Dec

    @genevievetomney For any Ontarian who was without power, or just those in the GTA? What’s the defined period of outage (dates/times)?

    Genevieve Tomney [email protected] Dec

    @brettwwatson gvn’t says there will be grocery cards distributed outside of toronto for those who lost power in storm. Still working on how.

    Jennifer Jilks [email protected] Dec

    @genevievetomney Even those who coped in hotels? @kathleen_wynne What about giving cards to social agencies to distribute? #icestorm2013

    At the very least, this demonstrates that it wasn’t just some Chinese people who understood the program as being open to all those affected by the ice storm, or who didn’t immediately think of “in need” referring to a certain poverty level.

    Above: On the 30th, news reports were still talking about “compensation” (which is very different in tone from aid only for the “poor”:

    Communication, or a lack thereof, is expected to come up at a special ice storm-related council meeting on Jan, 10. The mayor called the meeting, but Coun. Josh Matlow was the first to ask for it, hoping council will request compensation from the provincial government through its Ontario Disaster Relief Assistance Program.

    There’s a video of the TV report called “Ice storm compensation”:

    Another TV report, also using the word “compensation”:

    But here’s the government press release on the 30th:

    Toronto residents who have experienced prolonged power outage who need help will be able to collect a gift card at one of 15 Ontario Works Toronto offices beginning Tuesday, December 31 and ending Friday, January 3, 2014.

    Again, it does say “who need help”. Hard to expect people who have suffered days without power to be very rigorous in their definition of “needy” though.

    Many Greater Toronto residents are clamouring to get their hands ongift cards aimed at compensating residents who lost food during the lengthy power outage — but the program got off to a bumpy start this morning.

    Again, “compensating residents”.

    Read Kathleen Wynne’s Twitter feed and her conversations with people (though you may want to ignore the politics):

    lauralaura [email protected] Dec

    @Kathleen_Wynne day 8 no power, wondering how people like me can be compensated for groceries as we have thrown out over 300.00 worth

    Kathleen Wynne [email protected]_Wynne29 Dec

    .@ileenlaura I know that a lot of people have lost food from the outage. We’re working on a plan to replace it. More details on Monday.

    Kathleen Wynne [email protected]_Wynne30 Dec

    Families that lost groceries are eligible for a $100 gift card, and individuals for a $50 gift card. Details here:

    But some clarification here, or at least add in an “in need”:

    Kathleen Wynne [email protected]_Wynne30 Dec

    Those in need who have had to throw away food due to prolonged power outage can get gift card@ Ontario Works tomorrow

    This is better.

    Kathleen Wynne [email protected]_Wynne30 Dec

    .@jarobmc I know that some people lost a lot of money, and that’s very frustrating. We’re doing what we can to help those most in need.

    Again, how the mainstream news media was reporting:

    CBC News Alerts [email protected] Dec

    Ontario promises more grocery gift cards after supply runs out in parts of Toronto. Free cards are for those who lost food in #icestorm2013.

    Above journalist

    Genevieve Tomney [email protected] Jan

    Gvn’t reiterating that the grocery cards are intended for the most needy. Those who cannot afford to replenish the food they lost. #sl

    A reiteration 4 days after program starts. Replies:

    Nic Tas [email protected] Jan

    @genevievetomney the ice storm didn’t only affect the most needy

    Safia Ahmed [email protected] Jan

    @genevievetomney : Definition? People on Ontario works, low income seniors, the working poor. A clear eligibility criteria is needed…

    Finally, here’s an damning criticism now that politics are getting involved:

    The political way that this has been handled by Premier Wynne and her cabinet has prevented people from equal access to a program that she initiated, one that we don’t know the true costs of, and one that hasn’t been delivered on a needs-assessment basis,” said Progressive Conservative critic Lisa MacLeod. “She abused taxpayers’ dollars and she abused corporate generosity all in the name of a quick photo-op.”

    Lot’s of accusations of vote-buying by Canadian netizens over this and that “at least half” of those who got the cards didn’t actually need them or lost that much in food.

    Things however seem to be handled better in Waterloo:

    Starting Tuesday, residents who experienced a power outage for longer than 48 hours and who declare financial difficulty in replacing spoiled food could qualify for a gift card to Metro or Food Basics grocery stores. Food card values range from $50 for an individual to $100 for families.


    “We’ll talk to them about…is this a financial hardship for you in terms of replacing your food? And we have a sense from hydro, the number of customers who were without power for 48 hours and the general areas in which the power outages occurred that long,” he said.

    So here are my thoughts:

    I think a lot of people claimed cards who do not qualify as really needy or desperate people, much less poor. I’m NOT inclined to believe they were necessarily evil and were gleefully profiting at the expense of others. There is enough context about how quickly this program was organized and made public. There is enough context to suggest eligibility was either not clear or easily subject to interpretation. Not to mention that many people probably went to claim the cards simply because they heard from others that they could, without ever seeing the official government announcements themselves.

    I think there is enough context to at least give people the benefit of the doubt that they simply thought anyone who was affected by the power outage and had food perish could claim this “compensation” from the government. If anyone knew the cards wasn’t meant for people who have enough means of their own, shame on them. That said, I think the criticisms of how the government handled the matter are appropriate. Sure, you can say you wanted to get help out as fast as possible, but then you have to accept that you might be giving help to those you didn’t intend to because you sacrificed some measure of verifying need for speed.

    I don’t think it is therefore fair to use this news report to suggest the Chinese ladies here and thus Chinese people in general are immoral, selfish, greedy, shameless fucks. There are much better, WAY more clear-cut examples (though yes, shouldn’t generalize from those either).

    • Elijah

      The word “need” was repeated over a dozen times just within the quotes you provided. That’s a very clear cut word. Need or don’t need, there is no try…

      I have no doubt that there were any number of different ethnicities with their hands out look for help they didn’t need. If it makes you feel better, I think that they are all scumbags equally without racial/ethnic bias.

      Of course the fact that so many ayi can be found doing this sort of thing has no bearing whatsoever upon any conversation.

      • Kai

        I think I was fair to recognize the word “need”. What I’m giving the benefit of the doubt to is how that is interpreted in the aftermath of the extended power outage caused by the ice storm. It is clear from all reports that people were feeling pretty helpless and even “abandoned” throughout it all. You have people who coped by fleeing to hotels also asking about eligibility to claim cards for loss. The word “need” must still be weigned against the prevalance of the program being presented in the news and to the public as “compensation” as well.

        We have all been in situations where we’ve sought clarification on things. We’re assuming at this point that the ladies involved even saw the news reports, much less likely the actual government website notices. Is it not entirely conceivable that they learned about the program through second hand information? That, as they said, someone told them they could get a card, and so they came to see if they could? But upon realizing they couldn’t, they said “oh well”? At least they didn’t stomp their feet and act like entitled brats about it.

        My point though is that how morally reprehensible they may be MUST be in consideration of what they understood the program to be. This is not something as clear cut as murder. It’s closer to stealing from the donation jar, except it is complicated by the widespread media reports of this program being “compensation” for losses due to the power outage. This is significant enough to be considered before anyone rushes into making jokes about how these ladies must’ve been driving terribly and spitting out seeds.

    • Brad pitt

      Even if they didn’t read any of the statements saying it was for the needy, the cards were being handed out at the welfare office, I think that’s hint enough…

      • Kai

        I think that’s a good point but I don’t think it is enough to fully castigate the women or anyone else who got the cards but aren’t technically “needy”. The only way we can do that is if we have enough reason to believe they knew it was for the needy but wanted to claim them anyway. Since they aren’t the only ones, we can’t be so certain they knew but are playing dumb when caught “red-handed”. There are just too many people who got them and inquired about them under the pretext of them being “compensation” to affected “residents”. Even the government admitted to not communicating and handling the program well. They justfied it on grounds of speed being the priority. The opposition party and supporters are having a field day.

        • Brad pitt

          I think you are right that they heard it in a way that explained it as compensation for the “affected residents” but, once they heard that it’s from a welfare office they should have been able to put the pieces together…
          To be fair, the real intentions were probably not really to help the needy anyways… In my opinion the corporations first donated the cards for marketing reasons under the guise of charity. Then the government just took the PR opportunity and matched the money to win support, they even had politicians going door to door getting filmed handing out food baskets etc…

          • Kai

            Hah, yeah, I saw a lot of what you mention in your second paragraph.

            Again, I personally think the welfare office point is good, but I can also imagine many plausible reasons for why people wouldn’t arrive at that conclusion. Would distribution at city hall have made more sense? If people understood it as compensation to affected residents, wouldn’t it make sense to distribute at multiple locations the government administering the program has immediate access to? Is it a stretch to see government compensation being distributed from government welfare offices?

            I think one thing I saw that is relevant to this is a lot of the affected Canadians asking why not just a discount on their electricity bill instead? On one hand, that would make sense in terms of a general compensation, and on the other hand, that sentiment amongst Canadians inquiring about the program further supports the argument that a lot of people saw it as compensation for the power outage and not specifically help for just the poor.

            So like all of the “in need” verbiage, the distribution in welfare offices does in my opinion help convey that the program was meant for the poor. But I’m compelled to recognize that there were a lot of other signals that made the entire matter ambiguous. I won’t condemn the ladies or anyone else for operating under that ambiguity. I have to know for certain people knew the program was not for them but they tried to abuse it anyway. That’s not the case for these ladies and I reckon most of the other Canadians who got the cards.

  • mei mei

    Omg aunties just come back china already

    • markus peg

      China’s only just got rid of them! They wont want them back again!

    • Brad pitt

      You really want these kind of people back? You should be thankful they are gone! But please, come and take them if you want them that badly =)

      • mei mei

        srs if i can,i wish they come back

  • Kai

    Having looked at the statements from the Ontario government and the media reporting about the program, especially the timeline of reporting, I don’t think that’s a fair characterization of what was widely understood:

  • YourSupremeCommander

    What about people in the US who claim disability benifits while they are as healthy and strong as a cow? Or own 2-3 houses while living in gov assited housing?These types of folks who can work the system are found EVERYWHERE. If you are foolish enough to think that this type of shit only happens with Chinses people, then you are truly a stupid fool.

    • YourSupremeCommander

      If you are still having a hard time grasping this easy to understand concept, I suggest you go read more books…

      • Boris_Da_Bengal_Tiger

        Is this in Hong Kong?

        • Cauffiel

          Does it matter? Do you really want to go to the wrong fucking book store? :-D

  • linette lee

    This is news? Channel 4 should go to those Jewish, Indian, Black, Spanish, Middle East, Russian, Irish neighborhood and start cracking down people abusing government aid like food stamps and subsidized housing in USA. Everyone is doing it and not just the Chinese. I see people walk into supermarket with gold and diamond ring driving Audi using food stamps living in subsidized housing. Wake up America. Kids get financial aid from gov’t for college tuition and the parents have 3 properties under god knows who’s name. Parents fake divorce and collecting medicaid. Yep, you name it. They do it.

  • Song of the article:

    coincidentally it was also playing during their ride to the welfare centre

  • vonskippy

    From a country where they let injured children lie on the ground until they die, I expect nothing less then their Me Me Me Me attitude. Screw the poor, the truly needed, just give me my free stuff. It’s not “gaming” the system, it’s a complete lack of respect for their fellow man.

  • Brad pitt

    Just because these women are bitches, doesn’t mean all mainlanders are… It’s not like there was a line up of BMWs and Mercedes full of Chinese ladies waiting to take advantage of the offer…

  • iLL

    Soon this is coming to HK

  • Jahar

    I think the matter here is that it was intended for people who needed it, not people who had a loss. these days, in China anyway, it seems a lot of people think along the lines of “I lost something, someone has to pay.” I think they would have seen this as government compensation for their loss. People here also seem very unaware of, or to not consider, the needs/wants of others. I doubt the idea that they were taking food from a poor family even occurred to them.

  • Edward_Crowley

    I would not trust thai people. they are master scammers, especially the women….a friend of mine is looking to start up a private detective business for western men in thailand, he might well be onto a winner

  • nickhz

    im sorry, is frezzing rain snow?

  • CCCP

    “…with some households having no power for 9 days or more, everything in their refrigerators going bad…”

    “…As a result, the number of people who braved -20℃ temperatures to line up to claim [the grocery cards]…”

    Somehow this doesn’t make any sense to me. When it gets that cold I usually don’t even keep the fridge on as to not waste electricity, and keep the food on the balcony or windowstill.

    • Cauffiel

      Please see the thread immediately above. I have argued this point to other’s derision.

  • Kai

    That’s just an audience interpretation that isn’t necessarily true much less consciously intended but is nonetheless suspected by some.

    You can even argue the reason why some assume the Canadian media is singling out Chinese people is because the Chinese community there has a collective guilty conscience that there are indeed members of their community who noticably do similar sort of things (scamming or otherwise exploiting welfare/charity).

    But then you’d also have to recognize that suspicions of being singled out are pretty common in North America. If they had shown a pair of black ladies coming out of a nice car, odds are you’d hear complaints of being singled out by the black community as well.

    As far as “singling out” specifically, the question is, were the Chinese ladies the only people who came in a car that suggested they don’t need the grocery cards? If there were others, were they chosen because they were the best example at the moment the TV crew was there? Or were they the easiest example? Was there any reason for why they were used as the example instead of others? Was there a reason not to include non-Chinese examples? Time limitations? Post-production editing? Because the crew didn’t think it might be misconstrued as singling out Asians?

    There’s plenty of entirely innocuous possibilities other than Canadian media intentionally singling out Asians but also non-innocuous possibilities. Depends on how much benefit of the doubt you’re willing to extend to people.

    Just because there is suspicion doesn’t mean it is true. Just because there’s a denial doesn’t mean it’s true either.

    • Cauffiel

      “That’s just an audience interpretation that isn’t necessarily true much less consciously intended but is nonetheless suspected by some.”

      This is the source of the majority of publicly claimed racism in the United States. I’ve never bothered to articulate it to myself, but this is right on the money. This is why most white people walk on eggshells around most black people…. we don’t want to accidentally come off as racist. Or get sued for that matter.

      • Kai

        True, though I’d still want each instance judged on its own. There are so many factors such as the context, intent, and interpretation. Being offended by a joke in a Russel Peter’s show is different from being offended by something some lady said behind you in line. What some diplomat or celebrity says in the media is different from what some nobody says in his group of friends. Etc. etc. etc.

        Sometimes there’s a good argument for the offended being oversensitive but there are times where people were being inconsiderate to insensitive if not simply ignorant, as well as times where someone carelessly expressed something legitimately offensive that they in fact believe but might’ve kept hidden if they had been more careful.

        If people feel like they are walking on eggshells, we have to admit that means, on some level, they recognize that some of the things they believe or are prone to saying is or can come across as offensive to others.

        • Cauffiel

          “believe or are prone to saying is or can come across as offensive to others.”

          It can also mean what is offensive is arbitrary or not well defined or understood.

          Take Uncle Mao for example…. Chinese walked on eggshells around him and his local goons because they didn’t want to challenge the political status quo and get themselves killed. As I’ve read (and maybe you can confirm or deny this) is that Mao made a concerted effort to keep offenses to his political allegiance vague and selectively enforced to reduce maneuverability of opponents and keep people scared.

          I’m not sure if you’ve heard of Al Sharpton before… he’s a political pundit and de facto “black community leader” in the U.S. (similar to Jesse Jackson, if you’re familiar with him.) They’re both really just elitists who promote themselves as messianic figures to disenfranchised blacks who don’t know any better.

          Both lead the charge throwing around accusations of racism, which is pretty serious in a public forum. It ruins careers and reputations and assassinates one’s character.

          There is an enormous difference in magnitude between Sharptons and Maos, but the mechanism is similar…. keep people paranoid by making the rules unclear.

          • Kai

            Offensive is almost necessarily subjective. Again, because there are so many factors like context, audience, tone, etc. involved, it’s really hard to define yet I think most of society has a general consensus of what reasonably qualifies as offensive or not. It’s still really mutable, both over time, as well as within contexts,audiences, etc. (dammit!)

            I know of both Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson and their influence (as well as that they’ve had gaffes themselves), but I know more about Gandhi and Mao than them. Hell, I know more about Sherlock Holmes than them. I therefore can’t say I have a meaningful general opinion of them so I won’t offer one. I don’t know if they’re intentionally using changing definitions of racism to suit some sort of personal agenda, so I can’t judge but I can say I can understand how annoying such an intellectually dishonest action would be.

    • Cauffiel

      Oh, now I read the rest of your comment, and I see you have acknowledged this to a smaller degree.

  • I love how one guy post a huge comment about how the food in the fridge was going bad because of no electricity. What they couldn’t stick it outside?

  • PaulGillett

    Despite the fact that these people are clearly ethnically Chinese (accent) it is not what the media were reporting on, they were pointing out the fact that even wealthy people were lining up for free handouts, and thus making things worse for people who really need the help.

    If you watch the video, you will see there is no mention of race whatsoever. I think that if you ask the girl, she may very well identify as an ethnically Chinese Canadian. I doubt she is a tourist or on a long term visit.

  • Kai

    I think there’s a meaningful anti-Chinese sentiment wherever there’s a meaningful amount of recent Chinese immigration, and that includes Canada, especially the major cities like Toronto and “Hongcouver”. The stereotype isn’t “deadbeats” but more about welfare freeloaders/exploiters and certain unethical/immoral behavior or attitudes. Sometimes it’s just envy, when you see some rich mainlander punk driving around in a supercar and barely knows how to speak English.

    There have been plenty of negative news about ethnic Chinese in Canada, but I wouldn’t say there’s any concerted media conspiracy as some people might be way too eager to claim. It just has to be recognized that there is some resentment which is owed for the behaviors of some but which is also sometimes unfairly broadened onto the ethnicity itself. This isn’t unique to Canada. It’s a common phenomenon everywhere.

    I agree in most circumstances, Chinese people are lumped with Asian stereotypes, but when you have stories like this, people do bring up some nasty stereotypes targeting Chinese specifically.This is always the case. Some people are just prone to interpreting things in racial or prejudicial tones. Thank god for those who don’t.

    About the politicized comments, I found those amusing too in my investigation into this story. I’m not sure if you’re saying there’s more political hate speech than racial hate speech. If so, I would say its complicated by major Canadian sites moderating racism but not political speech, as well as people thankfully being a bit more restrained with racial comments than political comments, unlike China. That’s some credit to PCism in Canada.

    • Opi

      This might be true of Vancouver, because Chinese immigration is so prominent there, but for the rest of Canada (including Toronto) I don’t really agree with this:

      “…but when you have stories like this, people do bring up some nasty stereotypes targeting Chinese specifically.”

      What I’m trying to get at is that while the stereotype of Chinese being opportunistic is is widely held in Asian countries (including China itself), and on Chinasmack, and among some other Westerners that are unusually preoccupied with China, but I honestly don’t think most Canadians are even aware of it. I could be wrong, and I suppose that still wouldn’t preclude CTV playing to that stereotype anyway.

      • Kai

        1 in 10 people in Toronto are ethnic Chinese (10.8-12%)

        Chinese are pretty prominent in Toronto in my opinion. Largest minority.

        I understand your argument, what you’re trying to get at. Put another way, you’re suggesting that the vitriol and ethnic stereotyping is stronger on cS than in actual Canada. That’s fine. I totally recognize that cS is a self-selected community that is also prone to being an echo chamber.

        I’m not going to argue that “most” Canadians maintain some conscious “Chinese are opportunistic” stereotype. That’s irrelevant to any of the points I’m making and I think what I said is valid, that there’s “meaningful anti-Chinese sentiment wherever there’s a meaningful amount of recent Chinese immigration”. What you argue about the differences between cS and Canada is not mutually exclusive to what I said.

        While I could watch that CTV report and immediately think, “uh oh, this is gonna look bad for Chinese-Canadians or ethnic Chinese in Canada”, I don’t actually have a big problem with the report itself. I’m not inclined to assume the worst about why the people featured happened to be Chinese. Too many possible innocuous reasons for that. My objection is more with how people might unfairly extrapolate from that report, which is what has happened with many commenters here on cS.

        • Opi

          I’m not even saying that Canadians are above stereotyping or racism, so much as that that particular stereotype isn’t very common here. It’s a bit like how I’ve met a lot of Chinese people who are not all that politically correct, but I haven’t met any that think that the Irish are heavy drinkers.

          • Kai

            I didn’t think you were saying Canadians are above stereotyping or racism. I understood you as saying you think that stereotype isn’t common there. I think there’s a “meaningful” amount of it, and both of our subjective views are not necessarily mutually exclusive. I’m pretty sure we’ve arrived at a mutual understanding?

            Heh, yeah, a lot of Chinese people are not politically correct whatsoever. They haven’t had the PC movement North America has gone through. Lots of cringeworthy material there.

            All you have to do to take the bite out of the Irish as heavy drinkers stereotype is change “heavy” to a more subject-to-interpretation adjective like “strong”. :)

  • Kai

    Already addressed:

    Your response doesn’t address the central point of what the women understood about the program when they went there. The easiest problem that confounds your conclusion is the very likely possibility that they didn’t even learn about the program from the news or government notices (which mind you, only came out in those 2 days).

    The woman says her friend told her that they could get a card. What do you know of how her friend understood the program? What do you know of how her friend communicated the program to her?

    Blame has to be proportionate. Otherwise it is no longer blame but persecution.

  • Germandude

    45 years, 5 months and 8 days to be precise, which is not most of the 20th century. Most have learned however which cannot be said about most others, Mr. Kaiser.

  • Germandude

    Thanks! Finally someone who comes up with the right explanation instead of blaming it on fucking race. +1

  • ex-expat

    When did I generalize? Income certainly has something to do with it, but it is not just about income. And of course it is not about race or nationality. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have been dating a Chinese woman, a mainland Chinese woman, for the past four years. That being said, I believe that people are often a product of their environment, and sadly, in my opinion, China’s environment is relatively more conducive to such behavior.

  • ScottLoar

    Place yourself in the context of a reputable public forum
    like the Chicago Council of Foreign Affairs, attended by ordinary persons yet who have an interest in international affairs and are well-grounded in current
    events and have experience of life. Then hear yourself from the middle of theaudience rise to proclaim that, yes, “Western politicians are – political prostitutes – who are paid to serve the interests of the Western capitalist ruling class” is TOTALLY (can you hear it?) correct. Defend your thesis.

    Or, please give example of your “USA politicians are political prostitutes“ serving “the interests of the Western capitalist ruling class” that a muck-raking US press eager to uncover malfeasance , self-serving memoirs promoting
    insider’s knowledge, American government regulators and investigative bodies empowered to uncover illegality and impropriety among public persons and institutions, and citizens’action committees looking for stink have failed to uncover, but persons like yourself know to be true. Why do you know and these organizations and peoples do not? You have extraordinary street smarts,
    intuition or insider’s knowledge denied to the rest of us? Or the others are corrupted into lock-step compliance? I’m curious, go ahead and explain.

  • Kai

    On sweating through all the posts, I figure once I get into an issue, I might as well not half-ass it. That means I try to acknowledge other people’s arguments, recognize their points, and admit when I’m convinced I was mistaken or wrong. I try to do this because it’s what I hope others would do in return. If I’m not convinced I’m mistaken or wrong, then I try to defend my position. Just my philosphy on discourse.

    So, cheers, thanks for recognizing my points of contention with some of the conclusions people have made here. A lot of times, discussions on here end with people just being resentful, so I’m glad we arrived at a civil consensus. Have a great weekend.

  • ScottLoar

    Oh my.

    It is hard for you to imagine that politicians are not prostitutes whose policies are bought by money so let me give two instances.

    1) In 2012 the US political parties, once again, could not come to compromise and so, once again, the nation was at risk of default, most federal government services shut down, and the debt rating of the US was in danger of being further downgraded, none of which helps business. This was not about business, this was not about money, and this failure to compromise cost the US billions, so who profited? Ted Cruz gladly admits serving his narrow constituency is more important than serving the nation, because he is beholden to the voters not money.

    2) If US politicians are so easily bought then why couldn’t Taiwan in the early 70’s, Japan in the 80’s and China in the 90’s buy their way to influence US foreign policy? These countries and others have certainly tried, and now understand that they can invite congressional junkets to their countries, wine and dine congressmen on the pretext of hospitality, contribute to campaigns under several organizations, but all for naught. It is money wasted, because US politicians really pray only to one God – the voter who gets them re-elected.

    3) Well, let me throw in a third: Uh, who is the 44th President of the United States? And re-elected no less against a Republican candidate who was quite clear that he favored business, welcomed business, and openly admitted, “I’m not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there.” —Mitt Romney (January 2012).

    • sfphoto1

      Scott, you sound like a well-meaning American but your comments come off as too being naive.

      Who was the last Republican President (hint: he belongs to a political dynasty with ties to the Oil Industry) who surely qualifies as a member of the Western capitalist ruling class? And what excuse did he and his Vice-President (hint: he was the former Chairman and CEO of a defense contractor named Halliburton) use to justify the invasion of Iraq? The claim was that Saddam had WMDs which proved to be false.

      “The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with an increase in the Pentagon’s budget, have led to an increase in total military contracts to nearly $400 billion, their highest levels since World War II. Private contracting has grown to such a level that, by 2011, there were more private contract employees involved in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan than uniformed military personnel.”

      In 2003, the price of oil was US$37 one week before the war and reached a peak of US$139 five years later just before the onset of the Western financial crisis. The war greatly reduced Iraqi oil production and more significantly increased geopolitical tensions in the highly volatile but oil-rich Middle East. More than the Big Oil companies, financial speculators exploited the ensuing crisis to corner the commodity markets by controlling the trading of futures contracts using their monopoly capital, thus effectively manipulating the price of oil.

      “It seems likely that indirect psychological factors related to the Iraq war did contribute to increases in oil prices in 2003, and been one of several factors contributing to oil price volatility since then.”

      Please see: “War at Any Price?: The Total Economic Costs of the War Beyond the Federal Budget.” By Charles E. Schumer

      • ScottLoar

        You are proven to be naive but intense (“while the worst are full of passionate intensity” – W.B. Yeats; uh, ya’ know who he was?) on insisting your experience and view of life and love is correct. Now, look to the Iraq war: No less than 18 UN resolutions were ignored by Saddam Hussein despite repeated warnings by the US and some few allies (Saddam was a “monster and I believe he threatened not just the region but the world.”said Tony Blair on 29 January 2010 – uh, ya’ know who Tony Blair was?) and that was the primary raison d’etre for the war, not weapons of mass destruction which Saddam Hussein had used against Iran and peoples (the Kurds and marsh Arabs) in his own country and which even Hans Blix, U.N. weapons inspector and no friend of the US believed Iraq had and could deploy; viz.”But yes, in December 2002 I thought
        Saddam had weapons of mass destruction.” In hindsight Hans Blix accuses the US and its allies of a lack of critical thinking (uh, yeah, Hans Blix is also guilty) but not of duplicity.

        Now we go to your premise: It’s all about oil. Less than 5% of US oil imports before the war and less since come from Iraq (you may be surprised to know that most US oil imports come from Canada, Mexico and Venezuela), and that amount is needed because of the type of oil (yeah, oil ain’t just oil, but has different grades and characteristics which are open to different measures of refining… but, you know all that already, don’t you?). Does the market price jump as a consequence of war in the Middle East? Your examples shows so; of course it does. But “qui bono”? In this instance of Iraq the largest post-war investor and purchase of Iraqi oil is China State Petroleum.

        You are trying awfully hard to show avarice, filthy lucre, personal gain animated the heads of state of the US and UK to war against Iraq because it suits your prejudices (ya’ think the President of the US, the Vice President, the Prime Minister of the UK, the Chancellor of the Exchequer need the big bills in their wallets?), but the reality is the US went to war against Iraq primarily for regime change, thinking that a change of a murderous dictatorship in the Middle East would awaken an Arab Spring. Can you see where this is going?

        Your single focus on avarice, greed, money-grubbing, blinds you to the different reasons which animate human affairs, but this single focus is lazily convenient because it allow you to think and caricature human affairs in simple dichotomies of good-bad, black-white, greedy-generous, ad nauseum.

        Go back to school, present your simplistic views in a current events class or modern history course and see how your opinion will be received. Any class founded on critical thinking will not allow Hollywood-style stereotypes and popular hearsay.

        • sfphoto1

          “In this instance of Iraq the largest post-war investor and purchase of Iraqi oil is China State Petroleum.”

          Quite ironic, isn’t it? With its onshore shale revolution, the U.S. will likely become independent of Mideast Oil, thus reducing any need for the U.S. Military to maintain a presence in that volatile region. The so-called “Arab Spring” has now turned the Middle East into a “World on Fire”, which happens to be the title of a book written by Yale Professor Amy Chua.

          But I still stand by my thesis that the War on Terror was just a criminal racket orchestrated by the Western capitalist ruling class. It didn’t turned out to be what they wanted but that happens so often that the CIA has a term for it: blowback. At the very least, I think you would agree with me that it was a stupid war that cost trillions of dollars in taxpayer money which directly benefited defense contractors such as Halliburton and indirectly benefited Big Oil which has close ties to the then sitting President’s family.

          If highly-paid lobbyists try to influence public policy, that’s “conflict of interest” because then politicians try to appease special interests instead of defending, protecting and promoting the National Interest. Indeed, that’s the difference between China and the West. Because no matter how endemic corruption is in China, public policy is not influenced by money politics but is decided collectively by a highly intelligent, highly disciplined and highly political class of technocrats, researchers, scholars, scientists, economists, professors, i.e., the Confucian Scholar-Elite. China’s problem which Xi is trying to address is corruption in public administration, that is, in the implementation of public policy which requires the administration of public programs. If Xi succeeds, then China will likely turn into a Singapore-style technocrat-run neo-Confucian State.

          • ScottLoar

            It’s not shale deposits but US oil production (based on pipe-line cost; when the international price of certain oils goes above a certain level it is found cheaper to open up US production and move it through the pipe-lines that from the fields to the refineries, hence “pipe-line cost”) and a conscious policy of using energy like oil more efficiently and reducing dependence on foreign sources.

            Even the most conservative (maybe Amy Chua is the exception, I don’t know who she is) know that the Arab Spring will have an effect on Mideast dictatorships and single-party rule; the consequences are already known in several countries, effected by a citizenry who will not tolerate continuing inequities that deprive average citizens of a middle-class livelihood and condign their countries to third-world status.

            Getting rid of Saddam Hussein was a good thing. Rumsfeld’s policy to disband the Iraqi army and police, the only organs of authority left in a society brutalized by the Ba’athist Party’s rule, was insanely stupid, and invited every group with brute force to control whatever bit of real estate – even a few city blocks – they could occupy.

            The “War on Terror was just a criminal racket orchestrated by the Western capitalist ruling class.” The war on terror was coined by Bush Jr. but, still, you honestly believe in your heart of hearts that 9-11 was only the pretext, the God-given chance, for the Western capitalist ruling class to establish a criminal racket? I can’t believe I’m actually posing such a silly question.

            And now this, “in China, public policy is not influenced by money politics but is decided collectively by a highly intelligent, highly disciplined and highly political class of technocrats, researchers, scholars, scientists, economists, professors, i.e., the Confucian Scholar-Elite.” No, public policy which is the will of the CCP is decided by a coterie of 7 people in the Central Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China. That the agents of the State, just as the agents and gentry of the preceding dynasties, are necessarily politicized in the orthodoxy (dogma, if you will) of the State, does not qualify them for position other than as the political appointees most of them are. You seem oddly ignorant to the course of the CCP leadership; look to their biographies and see that their careers are in the Party and not independent or outside the Party. Compare the career of one Xi Jinping with one Barack Obama; one had a father favored by the Party and has spent his life as a Party functionary moving ever upwards in that hierarchy, the other was a lawyer for human rights and the underprivileged before entering politics.

            Before becoming to sanguine about Xi Jinping’s efforts I suggest try to understand rule by law, even when ruled by enlightened men of high probity, is inferior to rule of law.

          • sfphoto1


            Amy Chua’s thesis was that Western-style Democrazy will lead to ethnic strife in non-Western countries, thus turning them into a “World on Fire”, which is exactly what’s happening now in the Middle East.

            Regarding the invasion of Iraq, you’ve committed the logical fallacy of begging the issue. You haven’t really rebutted my arguments that the war was an error because it only caused more violence in the region which has now come to haunt the West:


            To understand China’s political-economic system, one needs to study Chinese History first.

            The Imperial State founded by China’s First Emperor, Qin Shi Huang Di, ended with Sun Yat Sen’s Nationalist Revolution in 1911. However, the Han Dynasty’s Confucianist Officialdom which the second Chinese Emperor instituted to complement Qin’s Legalism has survived to day. In other words, Qin founded the First Universal State in Asia which is now called China (named after him) and created the Chinese Nation. His successor, Han Liu Bang, founded the Han Dynasty and formally instituted Classical Confucianism as the official State Ideology for the Han Chinese people. Fast forward to 1911 when Sun Yat Sen’s Nationalist Revolution succeeded in ending Imperial Rule to create the First Republic in Asia based on his ideology called the Three Principles of the People which is: Nationalism, Socialism and Democracy. Sun Yat Sen never believed in Capitalism and that’s why the West didn’t back him. It was Russia that he turned to for help in building the new Republic. After Sun Yat Sen’s death in 1925, Chiang Kai Shek emerged as the de-facto leader of the KMT which originally was Sun Yat Sen’s party opposing Imperial Rule in China. However, Chiang turned out to be a Military-Fascist with well-known ties to gangsters. After WWII, Mao’s CCP won the Chinese Civil War and Chiang’s KMT fled to Taiwan. After the founding of the PRC in 1949, Mao continued the Chinese Civil War by eliminating all remnants of the Ancien Regime. Adopting Marxism-Leninism, China practiced centralized economic planning, class struggle, dictatorship of the proletariat, abolition of private property, state ownership of the means of production, etc. The result was one disaster after another culminating in the Great Leap Forward which led to the deaths by famine of tens of millions of starving peasants. With the onset of the Vietnam War, Mao felt that China was being targeted by counter-revolutionary forces. Mao also considered Traditional Chinese Culture to be hopelessly feudal and thus backward. So he launched the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution to “purify” the soul of the Chinese Nation: “To build the New, one must destroy the Old.” After Mao’s death in 1976, Deng came to power and launched market reforms in 1978.

            After more than three decades of market reforms, China is now on its way to becoming an industrialized economy. Deng’s reforms created what is now known as “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics”. The CCP no longer practices Orthodox Communism but still believes in Socialism.

            “No, public policy which is the will of the CCP is decided by a coterie of 7 people in the Central Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China. That the agents of the State, just as the agents and gentry of the preceding dynasties, are necessarily politicized in the orthodoxy (dogma, if you will) of the State, does not qualify them for position other than as the political appointees most of them are.”

            Again, let’s go back to Chinese History. China has more than 2,000 years of political history as a Nation-State and more than 5,000 years of cultural history as a Civilization. The Roman Empire, by contrast, disappeared as a political entity after the Germanic invasions caused the Fall of Rome in 476 A.D. The West entered the so-called “Dark Ages” for 1000 years until the Italian Renaissance in 1420. That’s when the Modern West was born.

            From the Han down to the Qing Dynasties, Dynastic Rule of the Imperial State was administered by the Confucian-Scholar Officialdom who were selected by competitive examination. Confucian rites of ancestor worship was also practiced as the de-facto State Religion with the Temple of Heaven in Beijing acting as the place where the later Ming and Qing Emperors paid their tribute to the Yellow Emperor. In other words, the Chinese Emperor was not only the temporal ruler of the Chinese Empire but also the spiritual ruler of the Universe as the Son of Heaven.

            After the founding of the PRC, the Republican State of Sun Yat Sen was replaced by the Communist State of Mao Ze Dong. Deng replaced Mao’s extreme Communism with the moderate “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics”. So the CCP today is run today as if it were the Confucian Officialdom of old. The difference today is that there is no Emperor and thus no Imperial State. And indeed, there is now a revival of Classical and neo-Confucianism but blended with “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics”.

            “Before becoming too sanguine about Xi Jinping’s efforts I suggest try to understand that rule by law, even when rarely ruled by enlightened men of high probity, is inferior to rule of law. Singapore is ruled by law, the Lee family dynasty seemingly in control, and Singapore is the state most admired by mainland China authorities; cadre are sent to Singapore to study public policy. Still, the governance of a city state, formerly under British rule which institutions are in the main British (even Harry Lee has been described by some not very charitably as The Last Englishman), is a long, long stretch for China which can’t even deal with Hong Kong’s gross dissatisfaction with mainland Chinese policies.”

            Qin’s Legalism or Rule by Law ended with the last Emperor of China. Han’s Confuciasm or Rule by Consensus is still alive and kicking in China. Orthodox Communism ended with Mao’s death but Deng’s Socialism with Chinese Characteristics is what Xi wants to perfect. That’s the Chinese Dream.

            By the way, Scott, you should study Singapore History first before making statements like “[Singapore] institutions are in the main British”. After all, that would be akin to saying George Washington was the Last Englishman to lead the War of Independence against the British Monarch in order for the new American Republic to maintain its British Institutions. What the U.S.A. has today are AMERICAN not BRITISH institutions even though the Anglo-Americans were formerly British subjects who founded the United States of America out of the original thirteen colonies. Get it?

          • ScottLoar

            Of course I’m not dodging the point. The overthrow of Saddam Hussein and the Ba’athist Party in Iraq showed other peoples in the Middle East that change could be effected, but the Arab Spring was truly initiated by that street peddler in Tunisia who just wanted a license to make a living, and it was denied him. What followed is a people understanding that they need not be subjects of the State but could claim to be citizens of the nation. Again, citizens of the nation rather than subjects of the State. When Egyptians took to the streets it was to claim the nation for themselves, their own country, long denied by the party in power. And when another party tried to hijack that country the people again took to the streets. I’m sure authoritarian governments are paying attention, don’t you think so?

            Ethnic strife is not eradicated by authoritarian government; it is suppressed and controlled as in the former Yugoslavia and Soviet Union, but when released by a failure of authority those minority ethnicities react. The solution is to transit from tribal mentality, from being subjects of the State to citizens of the nation.

            Then you go on to six overblown paragraphs purporting to give insights into Chinese history. I have honestly tried to pointedly answer your every silliness but you reply in a typically stunted fashion – blow long and hard with superficialities that you mistakenly believe give you credence and authority. Frankly, I doubt you’ve ever read The Analects or glanced at Song Neo-Confucianism which defines the orthodox interpretation of the Confucian canon to this day.

            A study of Singaporean history? Yes, but those most competent studies are not allowed in Singapore, just as those most competent studies of recent Chinese history are not allowed in China. Trying to impugn my knowledge of Singapore, China, oil, capitalism, market forces, whatever, does not relieve you of the cliches and shibboleths you continue to employ as substitutes for thought.

          • sfphoto1

            “Frankly, I doubt you’ve ever read The Analects or glanced at Song Neo-Confucianism which defines the orthodox interpretation of the Confucian canon to this day.”

            You mean the Neo-Confucianism of Zhu Xi whose metaphysical concepts of Principle (Li) and Spirit (Qi) under the Way (Dao) of Heaven (Tian) was the first known attempt in the world at devising a modern philosophy based on Spiritual Rationalism predating the Western Rationalism of Rene Descartes by 500 years. I should know because Zhu Xi’s hometown is in Fujian Province which is the same as mine. And yes, Neo-Confucianism was adopted as the official State Ideology in China during the Song until the Qing Dynasty and later in Korea (Choson Dynasty), Japan (Tokugawa Shogunate) and Vietnam. It also influenced the Code of the Bushido governing the moral, ethical and social conduct of the Japanese Samurai.

            And yes, I did study the Analects by memorizing and writing it out in calligraphy when I was in Chinese School. And to this day, we Overseas Chinese still practice the Confucian rites of Ancestor Worship.

            Now, at least we agree on something and that is, China possesses its own political-legal-intellectual-spiritual tradition based on Classical Confucianism and Neo-Confucianism and has no need to import Western Ideologies such as Marxism-Leninism or Western neo-Liberalism.

            It’s been a pleasure exchanging my views with you. This is my last post on this website.

            Good luck!

          • ScottLoar

            Zhu Xi’s school was in the Song, not the Tang,and claiming him as a brethren from Fuijian doesn’t mean you read or understand his footnotes. Memorizing and writing out the Analects is copy work, anyone going to a Chinese school outside mainland China does it, I had to do it in Taiwan, and anyone studying in Taiwan well understands .三民主義. Anyone with interest outside mainland China and access to the body of foreign, yes foreign, research and publications on that, Chiang Kai-shek, the CCP, and any aspect of recent Chinese history is rewarded with objective, competent historiography. You can include studies on Singapore, Lee Kuan Yew and the PAP as well which are banned in Singapore.

            Like many Chinese you perversely insist 1) foreigners know nothing about China or Chinese and 2) delight in long-winded but superficial expositions on your ideas of Chinese people and culture. I can’t take people like you seriously because you will accept any dogma, excuse any excess, apologize for massive crimes against their own people, just to make China look good and seem stronger. And that necessarily includes destroying their own history and memory as well.

          • sfphoto1

            三民主義, The Three Principles of Sun Yat Sen, I remember those days singing the National Anthem of the Republic of China.

            Massive crimes? Destroying our own history and collective memory? Who gave Westerners the right to pass moral judgement on Chinese History? The Americans had their bloody Civil War; so did the Chinese. Westerners have this psychotic obsession with Mao’s Communist era in China. Mao is dead. The Cold War is over. China has already moved on. The Chinese are the only one who have the moral right to write the History of China. Period.

          • ScottLoar

            “The Chinese are the only one (sic) who have the moral right to write the History of China”.

            You are wrong. History is the story of the past, and when that story is warped, edited, and censored it invites those looking for the truth to write that history down. The Chinese have photo-shopped their recent history for almost a hundred years, and have created a story that most know is false, self-serving but face-saving. You can sit surrounded by fairy tales but volumes upon volumes of solid historiography lie well within reach if you would only dare grasp, yet you continue to wallow in ignorance because it serves your belief.

            As always, you are strong on complaints yet fatally weak on analysis. I well understand why people like you, the true believers, lack such analytic skill and introspection. Again, look to the concept of cognitive dissonance; really, understand it and prepare yourself for the consequences.

          • sfphoto1

            France glorifies the bloody French Revolution. America honors Abraham Lincoln who started the bloody American Civil War. China reveres Mao who won the bloody Chinese Civil War and founded the People’s Republic of China.

            History is always written by the victor not its victims. And that’s because politics is always about power not morality.

          • ScottLoar

            No, France does not “glorify” the bloody French Revolution. Yes, France honours that day initiating the Revolution as the beginning of the transit from subjects of a King to citizens of a nation, and France clearly writes of The Reign of Terror and those responsible in detail; the books in French and English analysing that revolution in detail are voluminous, open to all.

            No, Abraham Lincoln didn’t start the bloody American civil war. The American republic was divided between slave-holding states and free, and because both sides could not compromise on the admission of new states as slave-holding or free, most of the slave-holding states (my state, Missouri, was slave-holding but quickly neutralized by federal forces) declared themselves independent of the US Republic. Lincoln had warned that any attack on federal properties, any seizure of federal properties would be considered an act of rebellion. The Southern Confederacy held that as sovereign entities they had the right to seize “foreign” properties. Perhaps you can now understand the main issue between the North and South was the issue of slavery but immediately precipitated by the Confederacy declaring itself sovereign and the North as enunciated by A. Lincoln dedicated to preserving the union of the states. Again, volumes and volumes have been written about every aspect of slavery, the civil war and participants, every battle, the outcome and consequences; no history of the US civil war is as extensive and detailed as that written by Americans themselves, open to all. My family fought on both sides of the American civil war.

            Yes, the armies of the CCP won the bloody Chinese civil war and established the PRC. That is not in dispute. What is missing is a written history that recounts the factual course of that civil war, the participants, the outcome and consequences, in detail and extensive analysis without regard to current politics. That history is yet to be written in China or allowed in China. Any history that does not promote the CCP or follow its interpretation of events and persons is not allowed so, for example, we have the popular ignorance in mainland China about the War of Resistance Against Japan showing the CCP as active protagonists and victors. Even the renunciation of unequal treaties and the surrender of the Japanese is denied to the KMT.

          • sfphoto1

            Does U.S. history books tell the sordid tale of its involvement in the Vietnam War? The current U.S. Secretary of State was a Vietnam War veteran who fought in that bloody war but came back disillusioned. The former Secretary of Defense who prosecuted the Vietnam War later wrote a memoir admitting: “We were wrong, terribly wrong. We owe it to future generations to explain why.”

            President Xi Jinping has already publicly admitted that Mao had made mistakes and that Mao should not be worshipped as a god but remembered for his role as the Founder of the modern Chinese State. The CCP knows that period is a Great Tragedy that should never be repeated. But ultimately just as Qin Shi Huang Di’s brutal founding of Imperial China was a necessary evil, so too would Mao’s Revolution be regarded as such by Historians. Just as Abraham Lincoln’s American Civil War, the bloodiest conflict in U.S. history, was a necessary evil to end slavery by destroying the Old South in order to build the New America, so too was Mao’s Revolution, the bloodiest in Chinese history, a necessary evil to destroy the Old China in order for Deng’s Socialism to build the New China.

            There is absolutely no question at all that the CCP abhors that period of Chinese history as extremely violent and bloody. But Mao had to do what he had to do and that is to perform a bloody surgery on the Chinese body, sick from invasions, wars, opium, feudalism, corruption, etc, Deng’s role then is to restore that body after surgery to health and now Xi’s mission is to build that body to be a star athlete.

            If I had my choice, I would set aside Mao and install Sun Yat Sen as the original founder of Modern China. But that would have to wait until the unification of the two Chinas — one Socialist, the other Nationalist. Both Mao and Chiang had their flaws but the Chinese would be able to forgive them for their mistakes if only because of their heroic deeds for China.

            And that is something for the CHINESE AND ONLY THE CHINESE to decide in the future.

          • ScottLoar

            You ask, “Does U.S. history books tell the sordid tale of its involvement in the
            Vietnam War?” You then answer with one example, “The
            former Secretary of Defense who prosecuted the Vietnam War later wrote a
            memoir admitting: “We were wrong, terribly wrong. We owe it to future
            generations to explain why.” And there are countless examples of US history books on the Vietnam war which has been investigated, critiqued, analysed and poured-over more than any other instance of American history. Go to the local DVD store and buy a copy of the documentary Fog of War which is a series of interviews with Robert McNamara, one of the chief architects of the Vietnam War. Look at the movie (the Chinese translation is actually quite good), then ask yourself for the Chinese equivalent on any aspect of recent Chinese political events.

            Of course the Chinese and only the Chinese decide their future; what makes you think another country is threatening China or its leadership, or is trying to subvert China? Such is 愚民政策.

            You have such fevered imaginings because you are ignorant of the past and live in a world painted with prejudices that you cannot understand. You cannot understand because you have little access to the true likeness of the past, and accept ignorance because ignorance allows you a convenient explanation of the present.

          • Edward_Crowley

            Confucianism is just crap, confucian values, asian values…yes I think it is very clear to the west just what those values are now,cheat and deceit and all under a pseudo religious system without manmade rule of law…..!!!!!!!!!!! End of story to loar!!!!!! and take a hike loar!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • David

      Read my comment below but I strongly agree with many of the comments regarding politicians and money (even though I suspect we would differ on actual political philosophy). People need to stop hiding behind the bogeyman of “big corporations own it all, I can’t do anything” and go out and make the changes they want to see (hell, I would rather see an enthusiastic person trying to make changes they really believe in, even if they are different than my own politics, than an apathetic sheep who just stays in bed whining all day on the internet). And I am in no way influenced by the fact that my son’s name is Scott and he is brilliant. lol

      • ScottLoar

        Indifference. The indifference of the American voter – and damned few register to vote out; what? 35% or so? – is most telling, and that indifference damns us to mediocrity.

        • David

          It is one of the reasons I always harped on to my civics students about the importance of exercising their franchise. I suspect most of the people making comments here don’t even vote.

          • ScottLoar

            True, I doubt most making comment here vote, but one good argument for indifferent voters is their very indifference, meaning that a voter should be current in affairs and educated to reasoned choice. So, perversely, more voters could well mean more people voting solely on a single issue and without regard to the greater good.

  • ScottLoar

    I don’t now what “fox news style” is, but it seems you prefer caricature rather than explaining the true likeness of a thing.

    Your dissatisfaction with Obama is common as many thought this man would effect a sea-change in politics, yet neglected that the President of the US is constrained in almost every manner but one, he could declare a state of emergency.

    You insist money governs politics, that some Big Money is behind war and peace, legislation and law. You can’t understand the simple sentence, “All politics is local.” Politics is for and decided by the local voter in the US. Yes, it’s that simple.

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