4 September, 2005

weekend links

This sounds like an unpleasant way to lose one’s virginity.:

Ms. Wang, a 38 year old woman who says she is a virgin, goes to Cathay
General Hospital with her mother, where Dr. Lin Hui-lin, a minor
celebrity herself, gives Ms. Wang a pelvic exam without getting Ms.
Wang’s permission first.
During the examination Ms. Wang’s hymen
was ruptured. Ms. Wang then filed a complaint with the Consumer
Foundation. After mediation by the Consumer Foundation, Cathay General
Hospital said that it would repair Ms. Wang’s hymen free of charge or
give her NT$100,000.
The Wangs, however, were not satisfied. Ms.
Wang’s father, one Wang Xian-ji, held a news conference where,
brandishing his daughter’s bloody panties (the print version of the
Apple Daily story actually had a picture of this), he demanded NT$5
million in compensation and an apology from Dr. Lin or he would take
her to court for medical malpractice. In the China Times version of
the story Mr. Wang said that although his daughter had had boyfriends,
she had protected her virginity like a treasure. Now her ill-fated
doctor’s visit had destroyed a woman’s most valuable possession-her

I recommend full compensation for Ms Wang, plus punitive damages and a trip to this clinic in Manila.:


Meanwhile in Bangkok.

BreadbodypartsthaiKittiwat Unarrom, a Thai baker’s son, was trained as a fine artist, but
has switched to baking realistic putrefying human body parts and organs
out of bread and other ingredients, and has become a trendy sensation: Along
with edible human heads crafted from dough, chocolate, raisins and
cashews, Kittiwat makes human arms, feet, and chicken and pig parts. He
uses anatomy books and his vivid memories of visiting a forensics
museum to create the human parts.

Today’s gratuitous image of the female body comes from Fons at the China Herald.:

A funny description by blogger Chinawhite,
a foreigner living in Shanghai, as he was invited for an evening out
with starlet Mimi. Mimi confesses she is looking for a nice foreign
boyfriend - I might have heard that before. Chinawhite did not seem to
have made the test, nor did Mimi.


Danwei points to a BBS post that ponders, "what if Super Girl were run by CCTV?":

The competition starts. Hosts Zhu Jun and Zhou Tao come onstage.

LittleredchoirZhu Jun: The spring breeze of reform blows throughout the
land, and happiness descends from the heavens in waves. Viewers,
through the great attention of leaders at all levels, the cooperation
of local television stations across the country, and with the generous
support of our sponsors, we bring you the CCTV - #6 Pharmaceutical
Power Pill Super Girl Competition!

Zhou Tao: The land is filled with reform’s spring breeze, and
super girls must test their wills. Viewers, the Super Girls competing
in today’s competition have been selected by local TV stations across
the country. Passing through stringent political investigations, they
are red-rooted and upright, they are actively moving forward, they work
hard to closely organize, they are both red and professional, and they
can be completely trusted.

Michael Turton notes that China has allowed Taiwan airlines to use its airspace, and offers a warning.:

largest airline said yesterday it will become the island’s first
airline to fly through rival China’s airspace in more than five decades.

China Airlines Ltd. said Beijing has approved its application to use
the mainland’s airspace, a month after Taiwanese Premier Frank Hsieh
(謝長廷) said he would allow the island’s airlines to fly over Chinese

China’s aviation authorities yesterday approved
applications from four Taiwanese airlines to fly over its airspace
after Taipei urged the permission amid rising oil prices.

Chinaairlines_1Hmmm….given the regularity with which China Airlines’ airplanes fall out of the sky, I’m not sure I’d permit them to fly over my territory….

Also be sure to visit Michael Turton’s weekly Taiwan blog roundup.

In reaction to high fuel prices, Seoul is trying to curb the number of cars on its roads and, for a country known for sporatic crackdowns, it’s impressively doing it through incentives.:

SeoultrafficGas prices are through the roof and as they threaten to get higher and
higher, this could put a crimp on the Korean economy, the world’s
fourth-largest buyer of crude oil and a nation that depends entirely on
imports for its oil needs. According to a Bank of Korea estimate, "a
one-percent rise in oil prices would trim 0.02 percentage point off the
nation’s economic growth."
For that reason, Seoul is reported to be
to give motorists tax and other incentives to prod them to drive less.
As part of the move, the government is revamping efforts to get people
to leave their cars home at least one business day per week (you may
have noticed the round, colored stickers with one day of the week
printed on them).

Meanwhile, North Korea has its own energy-saving plan.:

Norknight_2 It is eight o’clock on a Saturday night and darkness envelopes
virtually all of Pyongyang, serving as a vivid reminder of communist
North Korea’s pressing energy needs.
World leaders such as U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice have
talked of satellite pictures of the Korean peninsula taken at night
that show a brightly illuminated South and the North in total darkness.

Malaysia has started to crackdown on mobile phone porn and will be randomly checking cell phones:

First of all the checking of phones randomly is an invasion of privacy.
It’s terrible and infringes personal liberty. Is it worse that we are
not free within our own country or is it worse that some teenagers
trade naughty pictures and texts?
Secondly by deleting these
records do you actually stop anyone from having the impluses to trade
naughty pictures? No you just drive them deeper underground.

I’ve suggested elsewhere, the US and Australia would get better results in terrorism-related trials in Indonesia if they called off the high-profile statements and resorted to more traditional methods. It seems someone on Michelle Leslie’s legal team understands this.:

Michelle_leslie_1That didn’t take long. Today it was reported in the Australian media
that somebody claiming connection with the Balinese police could
intervene in the drug case of Michelle Leslie (aka "Michelle the
Muslim") for a monetary donation. Might just be some jokester, but also
might be just the tip of the iceberg.
At least it’s reassuring
that the investigation into the possible bribe solicitation will be
conducted by………the Indonesian police. That should clear up
matters fairly quickly. Sort of like the Indonesian human rights
activist who was poisoned on his flight to Europe. The pilot is now on

It seems that Hu Jintao is sensitive to charges that he has been taking China backwards, and has decided to rehabilitate another Hu to help polish his own image.:

Huyaobang_1The Chinese government has not publicly commemorated the birth or
death of Hu Ya0bang since he died on April 15, 1989, lest publicity
reignite the democratic spark snuffed out on J*ne 4 that year when the
army crushed the student-led dem0nstrations. State media rarely mention
his name.
Hu Jintao decided recently that the party would officially mark the
90th anniversary of Hu Ya0bang’s birth on November 20 at the Great Hall
of the People, said a source close to the family and a second source
with knowledge of the commemorations.

One of the sources reports that that some of the current Politburo
Standing Committee will attend the commemoration and that Hu Jintao
wishes to play the Hu Ya0bang card to inherit his political resources
and work on improving his ‘reformer’ image after a number of crackdowns
on liberal intellectuals, the media, the Internet and non-governmental
organisations and further restrictions on basic freedoms.

La idler suggested I should add some beefcake for female readers. It’s not really my area of expertise, but Jodi thinks these guys are eye candy. Nomad thinks the guy in front needs to better accessorize.


I’m always fascinated by anything that looks at the economy of North Korea, OneFreeKorea picks up on an FT item noting the rise of the ice cream man.

The Chosun Ilbo has printed a summary of a Financial Times story
that may change your model of the North Korean economy, but not much.
The story suggests that changes in economic policy in 2002 have in fact
launched a limited number of small private businesses, and that those
businesses are substantially enriching the people who run them.

Icecream_manThe World Food Program’s North
Korea director Richard Ragan told the paper the wealthy are
concentrated in five cities, including Pyongyang. They are the group
that can be seen going to work on their bicycles, which cost triple the
average monthly salary in North Korea. The newly affluent work mostly
in retail and service industries and include tailors, ice cream sellers
and bike repairmen who make money in general markets, which have
multiplied to some 300 since 2002. Some farmers selling surplus produce
are also part of what passes for a wealthy class in North Korea.

How long can an economy base
itself on an ice cream vending industry? For explanations by smarter
people than myself, I recommend Marcus Noland’s Korea After Kim Jong-Il and Nicholas Eberstadt’s The End of North Korea
(Eberstadt admits that he failed to predict the success of North
Korea’s aid-seeking strategy, but his analysis of the North Korean
economy itself is sound). An economy that fully participates in the
greater global economy can prosper as a service economy if its services
generate sufficient income to allow it to import the goods it needs.
North Korea will not mirror the experience of, say, Singapore because
it lacks the means to produce goods for its own use or for trade, the
connectivity to participate in the global economy, and the foreign
exchange to purchase what it needs from abroad.

Japan, a country where even the worst television is better than CCTV.

SwimsuitThis March, we had a post on the five worst television programs in Japan as selected by the weekly magazine Shukan Gendai. The fifth in the series was Mizugi Shojo (Swimsuit Girls)
broadcast at 3:10 a.m., Thursdays on TV Tokyo. The premise of the show
is to dress some young, busty models in bathing suits and have them
engage in goofy games and repartee.
One of the games is Tongue Golf.
This game is played with one girl acting as the golf course, with her
navel as the hole. Another girl plays golf on her body with a ping pong
ball, using her tongue as the club.

Speaking of Asian television, Gordon notes that the CCTV’s coverage of the disaster in New Orleans leaves much to be desired.:

160_myers_kanye_west_050903The wife and I were watching news on one of the CCTV channels this
evening and they were showing footage of the devastation that has
rocked most of the south. They followed that with clips of various
stars trying to raise money for the relief efforts and to my shock they
showed one of Mike Myers (Austin Powers) standing next to a black man
who blurted out "George Bush hates black people and instead of sending
aid, he has sent soldiers with orders to shoot us."
damn near fell off my stool. There’s a lot of blame to go around in
regards to this disaster, but calling the President a racist is
completely ignorant. unfortunate though, 1.3 billion Chinese are
probably going to buy into that notion.
That is complete lunacy
and I can not believe that a broadcasting network would allow such
blatant ignorance to be aired like that.

Also on Katrina, Sepia Mutiny notes that Sri Lanka has offered $25,000 in aid, while Madame Chang notes the Philippines is doing the same. Though is she wonders if it is a good thing.:

I have very mixed feelings about this…..
realise that the world is horrified by what has happened, what is still
ongoing and what is still to come in the southern States, I realise
that the world is trying to now do its part and help the ‘Friendly
Giant’ that comes to the aid of others so willingly, I realise that the
Philippines has a strong tie to the US and as such I can see it wants
to do its part to help….I applaud the reaction of sending aid
However, I cannot help but feel that the $25,000
would be of much greater use at home in The Philippines…..is that
callous or small minded and am I missing a bigger picture here?

And from Bangladesh, Rezwan asks:

… is it fair to compare Bangladesh to the chaos & destruction
United States is facing? Natural calamities are always a tragedy and an
act of God. The humans can only be well prepared and coordinated to
minimize the destruction. Bangladesh faces this kinds of tragedy every
year and still it is a developing not a stagnant country. The media do
not propagate the courage and efforts many Bangladeshis show each year
to start their life all over. If the calamities would not only be the
central idiom of the media, the world could have learnt many tips for tackling these kind of calamities.
Daniel Brett writes a striking post "What America can learn from Bangladesh":

"Last year Bangladesh faced a natural disaster
which was an altogether larger disaster than Hurricane Katrina and the
casualty figures were probably lower than the casualties sustained in
the New Orleans disaster. But the disaster was contained due to the
survival instincts of the Bangladeshi people, their ingenuity in the
face of adversity and their culture of hard work. Rather than shoot and
loot, Bangladesh immediately used its modest resources to limit the
impact of the floods before international aid arrived.

Donate to the Red Cross

by @ 10:07 pm. Filed under Japan, South Korea, Blogs, Singapore, China, India, Indonesia, Asia, East Asia, Northeast Asia, Southeast Asia, Philippines, Media, South Asia, Thailand, Web/Tech, Books, North Korea, Australia, Bangladesh

One Response to “weekend links”

  1. zhuanjia Says:

    CCTV played Kanye West’s angry remarks in full whereas NBC in the States censored them. Why do I have to be in China to get free speech from Americans?

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