Why China Will Always Be A Shithole

Russia-Bentley-Continental-GT-Mud-18As I sit on the 17th floor of my ‘so called’ 5 star hotel in Chang’an China, a not so leafy suburb of Shenzen and DongGuan City, I am struck by the fact that all of the nicely uniformed kids parading up and down like military conscripts in the school yard opposite my window, will have a future in this rat infested, polluted atmosphere we, the rest of the planet, call our personal workshop. The air is dank and filled with grey unyielding carcinogens, as the sun tries to rise yet again above yesterdays industrial production and today’s desire for more of the same. You cannot breath, it’s hard to see further than the quarter-mile of hazy landscape that is set forth in front of nothing but continued and unabated construction, and the sad part about all of this mess is, the closer you look, it only appears to get worse.

In two hours it will be time to leave my tiny oasis and venture out once again into the ‘wild west’, although today isn’t nearly half as bad as it was twenty years ago. Chang’an is considered to be an affluent Chinese city, boasting a golf course, which is as yet unfinished due to legal issues, a Wal-Mart, filled to brimming with exotic delights such as dried sharks fin, magic mushrooms and all kinds of foods that are deserved of one quick inquisitive glance before one is overcome by odors that reek of disgusting vomit and perhaps reminders that life ends as suddenly as it began. Chang’an also contains 12 Apple stores, 6 Nike Towns, and as many Rolex shops as one could possibly fit in a main street that runs almost 800 yards on either side, all of which are fake and neatly stacked with exact copies of their original’s fair. The tree-lined sidewalks are littered with yesterday’s news, broken bottles, vomit and spit and an endless river of used cigarette butts, seemingly cast aside on concrete because the trash cans that occasionally occupy space on that very same street are already filled and brimming with millions more. An air of apprehension is evident, no matter where you walk or drive. It’s a kind of disease, where many adults, stand or squat in their own ‘spaces’, just waiting for something to happen, and it rarely does. And yet out there, on the roads, which are now completely grid locked because everyone wants to own or does own a car, something that’s only happened in the past 3 to 5 years, it’s unimaginable chaos, fueled by impatience, intolerance and a general disregard for any acceptance that the law of the land should be adhered to in any way shape or form. In other words, it’s survival of the fittest and one wrong move and you’re dead. The people here do not care. It’s a fact, sadly expressed by their inability to accept that other citizens are their brothers and sisters, that people have rights, that they are a nation built on togetherness and not on the selfishness of greedy individualism. Everything is unfinished or sadly forgotten, from the high-rise buildings that house tens of thousands of people, all sparkly and very desirable from the outside and mostly shabby and extremely underwhelming on the inside where cracks can be seen from the top to bottom in the construction, rats and mice are an infestation that don’t seem to bother any of the residents and where , to the amazement of anyone visiting from the West, families of 20 are seen to be occupying 1000 sq feet of space, with nothing but ease and an acceptance that one day there will be 21 or 22.

Western ideals and influence, a doctrine that has perhaps woken this once sleepy giant and given it the realization that a materialistic path is for the greater good, a complete fallacy when you see the way the populous of modern day China handles their greed and their thirst for more of what we in the USA would describe as our God given right. The fact of the matter is that you can change the place, but you can never change the culture. Ten years ago most Chinese people believed a jaguar was an animal found in Africa. Now, a Jaguar can be found on virtually every street corner in every town, driven erratically by some farmer or business man, made whole and extremely rich over the past few years during China’s industrial boom time, and now found to be flaunting his or her wealth in the form of what was once considered to be western mythology, a luxury motor vehicle. I had a meeting some weeks past in a place just outside the center of DongGuan city. Underneath the office I was visiting was one of the most incredible sights I have ever seen in my 35 years of visiting China. The DongGuan Bentley dealership, situated inside what could only be described as modern day shithole of construction, bricks and rubble scattered all over the front entrance, litter randomly spread inside a half tiled floor where three brand new silver and gold Bentley motor cars were lined up, each one with a price tag of $555,000! Capitalism gone mad, where capitalism was only a figment of imaginations ensconced in gardening and flower arranging. A condescending opinion of course, but one well founded on experience and situation.

Reflecting back to 1979, the very first time I crossed the border from HK into Shenzen China, I was amazed that a populous so large could be so tolerant. Over the years my amazement has evaporated into disgust at the way people the people of China have changed, not so much from the standpoint of warmth friendliness, but more from their aspect of greed and disillusionment. China is huge, it has 1.6 billion people, and believe me, none of them really want to be living there. Now that America and it’s cohorts have made inroads to a culture that was once sublime, their focus on life is 180 degrees polar opposite of what it was, but yet their culture remains steadfastly stuck in a place none of us care to remember or recall. They are polite, warm, friendly, hospitable people, but they have no regard for cleanliness or most of the other things that we in the west find acceptable in the form of sanitation. Yes, China is growing, built rapidly by a government trying to catch up, but China is dangerous. It’s suffocating the rest of the planet, perhaps not deliberately, but certainly slowly and surely. They have little regard for life that is so precious, perhaps because there are so many who care so little for so few.

China is a godsend for some, a liability for others, but no matter what, China is here to stay, probably rule and definitely to remain dirty and rich!

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How Many Wankers Can Be President?

imagesOk so there’s only 18 months to go, right? 18 months and already they are lining up in their droves to get to the White House. How stupid are we to accept that this next race will take in over a billion dollars in donations, last at least a year and a half and surpass anything ever seen before from a campaign standpoint and all for what? For us to complain again in two years from now that nothing has changed and that whoever is gracing our TV screens every night at that point in time is no better than the last idiot who lasted 8 years and did nothing. That’s exactly how I see politics in the USA. It’s like an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie, all wind and piss with terrible acting and the occasional drama. Something you’d walk out of if you didn’t know any better, and the truth of the matter is, the public in this country do not know any better! We are blindfolded and blinkered and sucked in by the same bullshit coming from mouths that can do no more than spout out consistent crap about how they will change everything. How can they change everything when really nothing is there to be changed? The system is so flawed, slanted, tainted and subversive, that change of any sort would be impossible no matter who takes over from Obama. We are passing the buck from one lame duck to another without the slightest knowledge of why. People here see those glossy ad’s, those slick commercials, and all the other things that each possible candidate does to make him or her look like they will ‘rock’ when they become President, but the absolute truth is, each one is just a by-product of the machine that runs them. They are filled with insincerity, and a lack of understanding on how we, the real people, feel, and want to be treated. Being totally consumed with power and greed, each possible candidate is on a path to glory that makes no sense to anyone but themselves and the idiots that surround them. This country is completely backwards in coming forward. It’s progress into the 21st century is not only being hampered by a lack of understanding on what we want from those who will represent us, but also from this insane urge to go out and be the biggest arsehole they can possibly be.

Let’s talk about Hillary. She needs no further introduction than that her of first name. How can anyone vote for this liar and cheat? 10,000 emails, all missing, and oh, by the way, they weren’t official?? My arse they weren’t official. What was she hiding and why were they deleted and what else is she hiding from us now that we know there are financial and fiscal irregularities with the Clinton Foundation? And yet, here she is, Hillary in full swing, ignoring her improper conduct and going at it as if she was the patron saint of blow jobs. Why would you vote for her?? Because you are stupid.

Carly, another one name into making sure you know who she is without the addition of any last name bias. A lady who lost over 30,000 jobs during her tenure as CEO at HP, and someone who has never held public office of any kind. Although having said that, it might be a blessing she hasn’t! She’s shown that she has no idea how to run a large company, so how can she possibly run the country? Why would anyone in their right mind vote for her? Because you are stupid!

I’m not just ‘woman’ bashing here, look at the rest of the list! To date, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, and now, as of today, Mike Huckabee again!  Do any of these make you jump off your seat the way Obama did in 08 and say, “Yes! I’ll vote for him?” Nope, me neither. All wankers, each and every one of them. And of course even though he promised ‘change’ Obama did nothing. So much for jumping up and down with glee.

So what do we need to do to make real change and deliberate progress and what do we need to do to have a sensible campaign that lasts 6 weeks and not 18 months? The answer is simple. move to the UK! Their election takes place on Thursday for the House of Parliament, and the campaign, although tedious, boring and of course filled with liars cheats and even more idiots, has lasted only 6 weeks. Get in, get it done and get on with your lives! Not a bad way to go if you can stomach it. What could be worse? 6 weeks of British humor where 650 ish members are elected and then sworn in to serve then forgotten about for 5 long years, or 18 months of American madness, where one finalist takes office and looks down upon the rest as mere serfs?

In truth there is only one answer. Dictatorship.

 

Nervous Flyer?

IMG_0384One click and this picture says it all. Taken yesterday at San Jose Int Airport at 7.10 AM while I was enjoying breakfast in the Brit. This lady walks in, orders a pint of lager and proceeds to drink it all in about 3 minutes while she made haste through her emails from the previous day. She downed the beer, left a $20 and went on her merry way. To where, have no idea, I do know that although she looked frazzled, fearless and ready for anything the world might throw at her, she also looked like she could use another.

 

Game Of Clones

IMG_0260I went out to eat a few nights ago. Sat down with three friends, in a fairly decent restaurant near my home in San Jose CA. We began chatting, as most mature people would at a table for four adorned with napkins, silverware and exquisite menus, and then I looked right. There, right in front of my eyes was a scene that I can only describe as very 2015 ish! Sad in some ways, shocking in others. All in all, it just summed up what we, as society, have become. Two adults, one on an iPhone, one on a Galaxy S5, and two kids, both on iPads, all texting, playing games or doing whatever one does on these devices, NONE talking to anyone at the table. A family, obviously out to enjoy a very nice dinner, communicating only with the plastic electronic device sitting in front of their faces, and not with one another. This scene just begged for a blog, it poured out the sadness in what I believe we should call ‘reverse’ evolution, and it just smacked of what we have now done to family life as a whole.

I recall two years or so ago, my daughter was in her room and she texted me to let me know she was ready to eat. Her room was less than 20 feet from where I was standing cooking her lunch, and yet she couldn’t be bothered to open the door and speak to me face to face, she had to text. It was that very day that I recall thinking, “we have a serious problem here”, and frankly, I have been proven correct in the worst way possible. After eating and watching the family I mentioned earlier, I needed to go to the Apple store to pick up an adaptor for my computer. Walking in, the next day, which was Easter Sunday, I was confronted by a bank of kids, all lined up at the mahogany tables Apple stores use to display all their goodies, hands on any iPad, iPhone or Mac they could find, battling one another for screen supremacy while their adult parents either perused the store or sought out tuition on how to eventually beat their kids at the very same games in which they were now fully engrossed.  Once again, I was flabbergasted. Bring the kids to a store, dump them and let them sit all afternoon, hours upon hours of wasted time playing meaningless games while the sun was out and crying for baseball, soccer or any other sport to be played in clean fresh air instead of sitting in that musty crowded atmosphere the Apple store provided.

You’ll see in the pictures an older lady and two kids. I asked her, after taking that shot, what she thought of the situation where she had the kids in the store playing games and not outside where we all used to enjoy our fresh air and physical activity. She also gave me permission to publish the picture along with her comments. It turned out she was their grandmother, even though she looked so young when I talked to her up close and personal. She was embarrassed. I explained what Id’ seen in the restaurant the day before and she whole heartedly agreed with me that we, as society, have become lazy and completely self-dependent on ridiculous devices that have taken away all need for conversation or intimate communication. She even admitted that she rarely called anyone on her phone anymore, preferring the art of texting to that of speech. Pathetic, I told her, and she agreed.

IMG_0262And then there were the two little boys, abandoned by mum and dad, who ironically it turned out, were next door eating in a restaurant while to boys played games for free in the Apple store. Just another indictment on how pathetic we have become. Imagine 20 years ago leaving your kids in a separate store while you went to eat? You would have been jailed for child abuse not applauded for ingenuity! According to the staff inside that store, these two boys had been there over an hour and this had not been the first time their parents had left them there! It seemed to be a regular occurrence, both kids being well-known to the employees that patrolled the aisles filled with those magical devices.

What have we done? That’s the question? We’ve filled our lives with buttons, gadgets, and useless information. We have overloaded not only our memory sticks, but our desire for the latest greatest device we can find that will eventually cut us off from the rest of the normal world. When I go to Hong Kong or to China, to the UK or any other country in Europe, to Australia and beyond, I see nothing but tens of millions of adults and children walking the streets, devices pointed out front of their texting bodies, caring little for the throngs walking in front of them. They bump, the dodge and they swerve from out to in and in to out, just incase they miss a character on the meaningless text conversations they are having with their friends. This needs to stop, but it won’t! People need to revert to calling and not texting, but they won’t. The art of writing is gone, and that’s sad. The art of conversation has been condemned to the annuls of the now extinct 20th century, a mere fifteen years in the past. What lies in our future? A dumb, mind numbing populous who talk live to no one and can type at 200 words per minute. And one needs to ask oneself, where will it all end? Probably in an Apple store, where Barak Obama will be playing a video game of nuclear destruction with Putin, a game where no one will win and no one will die, but again, no one will ever know because no one will ever discuss it in person!

 

Yep, Here They Come

One by one now they will answer that call. The call of insincerity, the call to power, a call to govern and be remembered as the one and only President of the United States. The question is, who are they and why should we believe they will be any better that the lame duck we have at this present time? We all know who Hillary is, and bar an international incident where she shoves her private Blackberry up Putin’s arse, (we all live in hope), we know she will run in 2016. But what about the other side, the good guys with all the bad ideas? They think they know better, they think Obama’s inconsistent government has given them an opportunity to reform our once proud country. Are they right? Only time will tell, but if Jeb or Rand or Chris, et al, decide this job is for them, will they too end up grey, battered and bruised and also lame? Of course they will. That’s the unfortunate way this country runs. Get in, get out, build your library and walk into a sunset, often clouded with the pollution of poor decision-making and bad judgement, to make over $100,000 per speech at dinners and fund-raisers. Oh how stupid we all are.

They say downloadmore than 6 will throw their hats in for the Republican nomination, and I really think it will be 8 or more. The problem is, are any of them truly worthy of that nomination? If we look back in anger at those who we have voted for in the past, other than Clinton, perhaps Reagan, have we at all been impressed with anything to have come out of such closely fought elections over the past 50 years? Not me. I think each President has brought about his own demise through insincerity, inaction and a great inability to communicate with modern society. Look at Sen. Cruz for example. He’s led off the flurry that is sure to follow with his right-wing Christian beliefs, all wrapped up in a nice bow called elitism. The man who stood for 21 hours reading Green Eggs and Ham now wants to negotiate Middle East peace? Come on Sen. Cruz, get a grip. Go back to Texas or where ever it is you are from and get a proper job. Then you have Gov Christie. Surely, and I mean this sincerely and without bias, his obesity and his desire to kiss Jerry Jones at every opportunity will lead to an instant demise should he win the country over? The fact of the matter is, there is no outstanding candidate on the Republican side who would stand a chance against Hillary or any of her cohorts.

So here we go, it’s March 2015, we have 18 months to sit and listen to all this crap, to watch billions of dollars get washed down a drain called popular misconception and at the end of the day what happens? We get a man or a woman, (and I pray this time we get someone who can make a decision), who will take office, become older and grayer, do very little outside of raising more money for the next time an election comes round and then, as I so eloquently put it, fuck off from whence he or she came. Do me a favor, don’t watch, don’t listen, don’t vote and then don’t complain, because if you do, you are just pandering to their every desire and their very inflated alter ego’s, an ego which is turbo charged until they too end up in a gutter like the rest of us, complaining that it wasn’t their fault defeat landed right bang smack in the middle of their total inadequacy to relate to what is really going on in the United States of America. They have no fucking clue, they never will have and the sad thing is, they don’t care, none of them, not one. We are alone people. Not one of our current or future politicians care about you or me. They are all self-centered, power grabbing ego maniacs who are so out of touch with modern-day society that if a solution stared them right in their own face they’s ignore it in favor of deferring to another non answer.

The time is now. Let’s change America. Let’s not give any of this moronic crowd the benefit of the doubt. They are all wankers, each and every one. Let’s try to find someone, anyone, who can stand up and say quite honestly, “I am one of you!” I know it’s an unlikely scenario, but we have to try. Fill the position with normality for once or I’m telling you, in four years, eight years and even sixteen years from now, we will be so much worse of then we are today.

Rant over! I am off to watch Obama play golf yet again!

Applaud, But Only If It Seems Politically Correct

downloadDid you watch the Oscar ceremony? You did? Well you were in the minority. With its lowest viewing figures in more than a decade, is it any wonder people are turning off from a show that is filled with self-centered egotistical has beens, wanna be’s and cannot be’s? Isn’t it sad that so many of us put so much faith and so many hours into lauding those who are mostly wealthy beyond belief, placed high up on a social pedestal because of their ability to portray someone else’s misery on a screen where they can become larger than life itself and more endearing than an ice-cold bottle of beer on a scorching hot day in the desert. Hasn’t it become all too boring, too predictable and too politically correct? Is it now all about color, race, religion and patriotism? Have the actors themselves become too wrapped up in their own image of self-importance, their own beliefs and most importantly their own inability to be themselves and not who they think we would like them to be?

After watching some of the show on Sunday, what annoyed me most, other than the continual commercial breaks, expected of course because this is America, was the incessant mild applause for the movies and the actors who appeared in those movies, which were seemingly politically correct. Selma, a movie that has been proven to be mostly inaccurate because of the relationship between MLK and President Johnson, shown as one of conflict when historically documented as exactly the opposite, nominated for very few awards and yet there we sat, watching its lead actor cry as the theme song from the movie was performed with gusto by John Legend, some rapper guy and a choir. Overwhelming and outstanding were just two adjectives that seemed appropriate in a performance that stole the show, other than Lady Gaga, who had yet to entertain. My point is, why do all those in attendance, well not all, but most, feel a requirement to show their emotion to a cause they have little or nothing to do with and which will not rear its head in their lives ever again? Why are these actors so consumed by showing support to what they think is correctness, when quite frankly they really don’t care? If you are black, if you have ALS, if you have Alzheimer’s, or if you truly want to be a Birdman, then yes, cry away when it’s your turn, but please don’t bawl or applaud each and every time a simple mention of that movie is brought up on-screen. Not only is it frustrating, annoying and disconcerting, it’s just bloody stupid.

Go home to your trillions, billions or whatever it is you have. Think about those who have noting, or those who have so much less than you have. Don’t tell me that women deserve equal pay when you are earning 20 times what the average woman is earning. Keep your political views to yourself, we all know what’s going on in Africa, the Middle East and Asia. Let me watch the news ON the news and NOT on the Oscars. I don’t care if you’re Mexican, Polish, Japanese or from the moon. Get up, thank your mum and dad, your kids, your wife and or your mistress, and then get off. Don’t come back, unless you’re fortunate enough to win another award, and please, please wear something that covers up your tits and your bum! It’s just annoying to look again and again at fake boobs, paid for in the hope that it can extend a career. That’s why Jack Nicholson and John Wayne and Kevin Spacey were great. They were themselves, no additions. Meryl Streep is natural, unblemished by surgeries, as far as I am aware, and look what she’s done!

It’s over for another year, the audience was down, the humor was crap, but the host, again, in my opinion, was superb. Kudos to NPH, he was excellent. Highly articulate, funny at times and took the show to another level not seen since the days of Billy Crystal. To those who won, congratulations. To those who lost, too bad. To those who weren’t nominated? What the fuck were you doing there in the first place and finally to those who applauded again and again for the reasons already mentioned above? Go get a proper job earning proper money and then tell me who you’re going to clap for!

Presidents Day

IMG_0088It’s Presidents day, and it’s George Washington’s birthday! Must be time to buy a new Honda, Nissan or some other brand of vehicle being continually advertised on television. Or perhaps it’s time for that new mattress, you know, the one with numbers or the one from that company who have the train shooting endlessly up and down their tag line which states they are employee owned. All steeply marked down to coincide with Presidents day, although most of those who advertise such marvelous discounts have been doing so since January 29th and will probably do so until Feb 28th! Or maybe it’s just time to sit down and reflect on whether having a president, indeed having any form of our current government is at all helpful or necessary at all in making our minds up to purchase the luxury goods we all crave.

Celebrating George Washington is one thing, but to celebrate all Presidents on the same day? What did we do to deserve such a feast of merriment? Why are Presidents I’ve never heard of, such as Cleveland, Harrison, Garfield and Harrison, who I’m sure all played their part in shaping this nation, and who are rarely, if ever, mentioned on any TV or radio show I watch or listen to, having their names remotely connected with such an esteem character as GW? Surely we’ve got it all wrong? In my opinion, the only Presidents who matter are Washington, because he was the first, and Obama, because he’s the latest. If Jimmy Carter was that great, then why not take a holiday on October 1st? That way, Toyota, Sleep Train et al, can advertise deep discounts more than 45 times per year, presuming no two past presidents share the same birthday. Oh, hang on, Toyota and their cohorts already do try to entice us into their showrooms 52 weeks a year with never-ending sales or price reductions! Fuck it, who needs a President anyway?

It’s back to what I was stating when I opened up this debate, today is just an excuse to have a day off. How many of you out there are actually working? Probably most of you, and in that case, how many cars can Honda actually hope to sell? Perhaps that’s why the incentive’s are so deep? Get them out of work and into the showroom so they can all say, “I dogged off work to buy my new wheels!” OR, “I’m shagging the wife in out new sleep number bed tonight, she’s the hard side and when I’m done, I’ll be soft!” Whatever the deal, make sure you have a nice day. For those of you on the East coast, I am sorry, but why the fuck would you ever want to live there? 20 feet of snow and more to come? It’s 80 here, yes 80! No wonder our taxes are so high and no wonder there’s no doubt that global warming is going to make billions homeless or dead within 100 years. But that’s OK, we can still look forward to more stellar car buying deals or incredible mattress offers as we all burn in Hell and Presidents day rolls on throughout the annals of time.