Friday, December 30, 2005

WSJ: 'Calrification' of A Chinese Study

We knew movie 'Erin Brockovich' was based on a true story, but we didn't know how the legal struggle was entangled with a key journal article (and its 'clarifications') published by a little known Chinese doctor, until now.

Chromium-6 is a metal produced in the manufacturing process such as stainless steel. In 1986, Dr. Zhang Jiandong published a study of people in five villages in north-eastern China drinking polluted well water who suffered higher cancer rate. His work was cited by US federal regulatory agencies as evidence of cancer-causing effects of Chromium-6.

Chemical company PG&E, the devil Julia Roberts fought with in the movie, hired a consulting firm to nullify the Dr. Zhang's paper. The firm used Dr. Zhang's name published a 1997 paper with opposite conclusion from the same data. The new paper were also broadly cited by federal regulatory agencies in assessing the safety of Chromium-6.

The consulting firm was ChemRisk, founded by Dennis Paustenbach, a Bush appointee on the advisory board of CDC. The firm received $7 million for this work.

See also: Chrom-plated Fraud

Lien Chan Named Person of the Year

The Honorary Chairman of KMT Lien Chan was named Person of Year 2005 by Nanfang Weekend, the No. 1 newspaper in China by subscriptions.

Former Vice President (1996-2000) of Taiwan, Lien lost two presidential elections in the year 2000 and 2004. However, his political life reached its highest peak on April 26th 2005, when his plane touched down at Nanjing Lukou Airport, which marked the third hand-shake between the National Party (KMT) and China Communism Party (CCP). The two parties joined efforts in 1924-1927 to unite China from warlords, and they collaborated again in defending China against Japanese invasion.

Lien was also hailed when he voluntarily stepped down from the post of the Chairman of the KMT despite tremendous support after serving his terms. All previous leaders of KMT employed a range of techniques from declaring the martial law to redefining the constitution in order to keep their positions.

Lien Chan was born in Xi'an in 1936. He received his BS and MS from the National Taiwan University and a Ph.D. in political science in 1965 from the University of Chicago. Lien was often accused of being arrogant, partly because he never bothered to make comments or explanations on these accusations. Rumor has it that Lien is the most wealthiest person in Taiwan, which is not true but is still cited on daily basis by his political opponents. After retirement, he surrendered eligibility of treatment as a former vice president to claim benefits of retired civil servants, which technically renders more monthly income from pension because of his long serving years.

This year's list of candidates: 600 thousands adjunct rural teachers, Shenzhou 6 project group, Lu Jun, Li Yizhong, Zhang Baoqing, Li Yanhong, Chen Danqing, Lien Chan, Ding Junhui and the Super Girls.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Ugly Wife, Nearby Farmland and Old Cotton Coat

Eleven Reasons to Marry an Ugly Wife
For your holiday joy!

娶一个恐龙,可能一时会后悔,但就长远角度来看,恐龙的好处多多,综合前人经验及自 己的切身体会,总结出恐龙十一大优点:











作者:吉星高照 (2005-12-16 17:19)

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Fudan Scissorhands, Update 2

FS, FS Update

Italian shoemakers concern over Italian shoe toxins

CHINA: Mulls Italian concerns over shoe toxins : Apparel and Textile news

The Italian government started testing imported Made-in-China shoes in response to the request from the Italian footwear association. The association claimed found potentially dangerous chemicals such as azo dye in Chinese footwear imports. However, according to the Wei Yafei, an officer of the Chinese Leather Industry Association, the dye in question was actually imported from Italy. Once again, the westerners lifted the rock, but dropped it on their own feet.

In the first 10 months of this year, China exported over 90 million shoes to Italy, the traditional famous shoe making country. The market share of Chinese made shoes in Italy increased by 700% in the past two years.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Boing Boing: Ninetendo threatens lawsuit over cancer gene "Pokemon"

Boing Boing: Ninetendo threatens lawsuit over cancer gene "Pokemon"

I guess we can only love the gaming industry so much, and after all, there are always good guys and bad guys. Just in case you are wondering, zbtb7 comes from zinc finger and BTB domain containing 7A.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Chinese Quotes

  1. 这个政府你批评它的时候它呈暴怒状,它们花你钱的时候呈白痴状
  2. 孩子交给老师,人民交给警察,都是要命的事!
  3. 一个鸟巢,一个蛋,真逗
  4. 这是一片神奇的土地,这是一个伟大的民族。在这片土地上,什么人间奇迹都可以创造出来。 is down; this is inconvenient

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Top 10 Internet Events in China 2005

Top 10 Events that Shaped the Internetscape in China for better or worse in the year of 2005:

10. Fudan Scissorhands
Fudan University graduate student Zhang Liangliang tortured over 30 cats over a period of less than half year. Zhang bragged himself as the Fudan Scissorhands, after he hurt a cat with a long sharp scissor. He was caught red hand on the last cat, whose pictures of a cat with bleeding eyes were circulating around the world. The cat did not survive despite rescue efforts made by local animal lovers.

9. Chen Yi vs. Netizen Audit
Chen Yi, a Southwest University student offered herself for bid on Sep 15th, 2005, to raise money for her mother's liver transplant surgery, which drew concerns over proper managing of the donations account. Right before a self-appointed investigator team about to make public their findings, Chen's mother died in an unrelated surgery. The incident generated big debate over whether the donors have says over the usage of their donations.

8. Bright Dairy
Bright Dairy (Guangming Milk) was caught on tape for making milk product with re-manufactured rotten materials. The program made by Zheng Zhou TV station was aired on Jun 7th, 2005. Instead of correcting the wrong doings, Bright Dairy chose to wage a full scale bluff war with its superior political resources. One of its ex-CEO was Jiang Zemin. The initial TV report was cut short, and traditional media was shut up, but Internet message boards pushed for a broad disclosure of the scandal. It is widely believed that Bright Dairy will never recover in the retail sector. Bright Dairy was the forth largest milk manufacture in China with plants all over the country.

7. Real Names for University BBS IDs
The Higher Education Ministry ordered all Electronic Bulletin Board System operated by students employ real name policy. Beginning in March, most BBSs allow only current registered students to register online IDs, and many of them no longer allow off-campus access.

6. MSN Spaces
Chinese Internet enthusiasts adopted blogging as early as their oversea counterparts, however, it is the introduction MSN Space which made blogging a habit among young Chinese. It seems every thirteen years old boys and girls get their spaces overnight.

5. Podcasting
Web 2.0 is a very cool word in Chinese IT 2005. While everybody have been talking about it, a few worked on it. An example is, where members make comments on books they have been read. Also check out the podcasting page at the High School Affiliated to Fudan University.

4. Yahoo! The Collaborator
For a while, Chinese political dissidents rely on foreign Internet services providers to avoid political censorship. They were shocked when a journalist Shi Tao of the China Business Herald was sentenced by the Changsha Intermediate People's Court to 10 years in jail on the charge of divulging state secrets on Apr 30th, 2005. Yahoo! Holding (Hong Kong) provided the communism prosecutors with Mr. Shi's detailed online log entries, which helped to identify and convict him. Mr. Shi Tao shouldn't have used a Yahoo EMail account.

Although Yahoo's Jerry Young brushed off the responsibility as 'complying with local law', Yahoo Holdings (Hong Kong) is not obligated to operate within the laws of China or to cooperate with Chinese police, because its legal entity is not in mainland China, according to Mr. Guo Guoting, attorney for Shi Tao.

Listen carefully Yahoo, there was a huge gap between doing nothing to help and stabbing on the back. You crossed the line, and this is getting very personal. If all you care are profits, we netizens who do have a moral consciousness vow to see you pay, including but not limited to never using any products bearing your name again. Shame on you Yahoo! Shame on you! boingboing

3. Kai-Fu Lee joined Google
In Microsoft vs. Google over Lee's jumping boat, Lee characterized his role at Microsoft Research Asia as no official job function, he is seen as the God Father of the institute, and the idol of Chinese young talents in the field. His job function is very clear at Google, which is recruiting. Google announced Lee's appointment as the president of Google China, and Lee started on Sep 15th, 2005.

2. US Company Helps Block VoIP
Las Vegas Based Verso tested software with their Chinese partners on Blocking Skype. The high price charged by Chinese telecommunication companies is responsible for the unbalanced rate between China and the outside world. For example, it costs $0.02 per minute to make a phone call from the US to China, while $0.20 per minute the other way. VoIP casts even greater fear on the Chinese telecommunication companies. Although there are several telecommunication operators in China, their international policy is closely coordinated by the China Ministry of Information Industry, and form a monopoly in reality.

1. Baidu IPO Inc is the largest Internet search engine company in China. Baidu grows with suspicious ties to the Chinese government. It was not a surprise when Google was blocked by the Chinese government in 2002, however, inquiries to Google were redirected to a few Chinese search engines, with the great majority went to Baidu. The IPO was big success at the beginning with a 354% first day rise on Aug 8th, 2005. The initial price was $27, and the highest price was $153.98. The price has been sliding ever since. Google holds around 2.6% stake in Baidu.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Lieutenant Colonel's New Hot Tub

Via boingboing

Lt. Col. Debra Harrison of the U.S. Army posed in front of her Trenton, New Jersey home on Wednesday, Nov 30th, 2005. Her recent home improvement project including a new hot tub and deck had been funded by money intended for a library in the holy city of Karbala and an Iraqi police academy.

Colonel Harrison was charged with taking cash brides of $80,000 to $100,000, a Cadillac Escalade, a trove of illegal weaponry and other items in connection to construction contracts in Iraq, where she received a bronze star. Lt. Col. Ruslan N. Miroshnichenko praised Colonel Harrison in his nomination letter, "......have the highest regard for their professionalism and very real ability to get things done. I have also witnessed at first hand how they built a strong and loyal team around them, and how they developed and managed that team. A team that has achieved excellent results in an often difficult environment."

Back home, Harrison works for the city of Trenton as an accountant.

Adopted Chinese Baby Slain by Her Tennessee Mommy

A Williamson County grand jury indicted Jennifer Alvey on charges of first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse, aggravated child neglect and reckless homicide in the death of Emma Mei. Jennifer and Phillip Alvey adopted Emma from China on Feb 27th, 2005 through Bethany Christian Services Adoption Agency. Emma Mei was born in Huangmei, Hubei province of China on Feb 11th, 2004.

"The mother held the baby and shook the baby back and forth, striking the baby's head on a coffee table in their living room", said Spring Hill police detective Sgt. Steve Cretin. Emma died five days later on Oct 24th, 2005, suffering a skull fracture in the Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt, Tennessee. Jennifer is a medical assistant and her husband Phillip is a used car manager.

Jennifer originally said that Emma had fell from her plastic bicycle, when she screamed for help hysterically on Oct 19th. However this was not Emma's first accident at the Alvey's. On Sep 27th, she was treated at the Williamson Medical Center after "fallen down the steps".

The couple posted death of Emma on the Bethany Christian website: "We thank all of you for your prayers, thoughts and kind words. Emma was everything we dreamed of as our daughter…. We don't pretend to know the reason her time with us was cut so short, only that it must have happened to save her from something down the path of her life that would have caused her pain. … Emma fell asleep for a nap in her Mommy's arms never to awake again and passed away at the hospital in her Daddy's arms. … She was an angel on Earth and is now a beautiful angel in Heaven. Emma, your Daddy and Mommy love and miss you so much."

Two Chinese Students Fatally Shot, Update

Link to the initial blog entry

Ottawa police issued a nationwide two counts of first degree murder warrant for the arrest of Wei Fu Kwok age 27 in connection with the slaying of two Chinese students Liu Tailang and Tian Linhai in a downtown Ottawa karaoke house on the morning of Dec 6th, 2005. A Vancouver, B.C. resident, Wei is also known as his street name Jackie Wei. Wei is believed to be armed and dangerous. The police advised people not to get close to the suspect if seen, instead call 911 immediately. They can also call the criminal division of the Ottawa police at 236-1222 ext: 5493.

A National Hero Tumbles

"He's not a politician, a tycoon, or a pop star. But these days, Hwang Woo-suk may enjoy more popularity and respect in South Korea than the hottest celebrity..... The government even issued a postage stamp in his honor in February that juxtaposes an image of growing stem cells with silhouettes of a man rising from a wheelchair, walking, and embracing another person."
Businessweek Article
Earlier this year, South Korea scientist Hwang Woo-suk reported to have cloned the first tailored human embryo to use for research. His group at Seoul National University was also known for cloning the first human embryo, and first clone dog in the world. The study is an important step stone between cloning research and therapeutic needs, as it found how to grow stem cells from a piece of skin taken from the patient. He was hailed by his colleagues all around the globe, "I am amazed at how much they have accomplished in just a year and the amount, the quality and the rigorousness of their evidence," said Dr. Gerald Schatten of the University of Pittsburgh in a telephone interview. Dr. Schatten is also a co-author of Dr. Hwang's 2005 Science paper. Dr. Schatten has been a wisteria around the pergola of Dr. Hwang discoveries in stem cell researches. Two duo recently met in October, when Schatten was reported asking for the chair of the board of a research center funded by South Korean government. Soon various questions and speculations surround Dr. Hwang's research began emerging in the South Korean press.

Today, Dr. Hwang and his team were accused of data fabrication. The issue came into spotlight after reports in the Korean press alleged Dr. Huang of using young female subordinates' eggs, which would be a serious violation of scientific and academic ethics. However, on Nov 10th, Dr. Gerald Schaten reassured the Science that 'none of the oocytes used in Dr. Hwang's 2004 or 2005 science papers were obtained from reimbursed women donors'. By now we have learned that his reassurance was not true, but it did effectively quell the debate until more controversies was raised by a Nov 22nd TV report on Dr. Hwang made by a Korean television station MBC. The plot has another sharp turn on Dec 4th 2005 when MBC publicly apologized for the aforementioned report.

Dr. Schatten was back on the center of the turmoil as the corresponding author for high resolution images when Science noticed some discrepancies of the images they presented in the peer-reviewed version PDF file, and the file camera-ready version file. The images were alleged and later admitted to be duplicated or fake. On Dec 13th, 2005. Dr. Schatten asked Science to have him removed as a co-author of Dr. Hwang's 2005 paper.

On Dec 14th, Dr. Ian Wilmut of the University of Edinburgh, teams up with a crew of first class scientists expressed concerns over the public awareness of the scandal. They made an appeal to the Science which called for containing the dispute within the 'scientific community', in stead of the on-going 'trail in the press'. Join the choir, there are Drs. Michael West and Robert Lanze of Advanced Cell Technology, Dr John Gearhart of John Hopkins University, Dr. Austin Smith of the University of Edinburgh, Dr. Alan Colman of EL Cell International, Dr. Alan Trounson of Monash University and Dr. Keith Campbell of University of Nottingham.

In South Korea, thousands women lined up at the door of Dr. Hwang's lab to donate their eggs for his experiment. They hold mugunghwa, the national flower, and sing Aegukga, the national anthem to support their national hero at a very difficult time.

Science Reactions

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Nancy Olivieri vs Miriam Shuchman

A physician noticed a serious issue during the clinical trail of a new drug, and decided to inform her patients and the academia the life threatening risk associated with using this drug. After all, presumably that's the whole point of doing this kind of trails. What a crime!

It is exactly the crime for which Dr. Nancy Olivieri had been punished by "five years of personal vilification, reprisals and harassment." And neither the Hospital for Sick Children where the trail was conducted, nor the University of Toronto who operated the hospital supported Dr. Nancy Olivieri in fulfilling her ethical obligations to her patients or her scientific obligations to the public.

The University of Toronto even makes a distinction between academic faculty and clinical faculty in terms of the range of academic ethics and freedom, in response to a report issued by the Canadian Association of University Teachers in which the University was accused of wrong doings in the case strangled with corporate money, in this case, money from the largest Canadian pharmaceutical company Apotex.

However ten years after the drug was pulled from North America, and five years after Dr. Nancy Olivieri won her substantial settlement and job reinstatement, Dr. Miriam Shuchman's new book "the Olivieri Case Revisited" offers an even blurred view of boundaries between right and wrong among major roles involved in the scandal as well as on what had really happened. In her book, Dr. Nancy Olivieri was portrayed as "one of these people who thinks whatever tune she has chosen at the moment, everyone must be dance to it". The argument is supported by the fact that it's Dr. Nancy Olivieri who made the questioned drug passed the scrutiny of FDA without setting proper protocol and monitoring, which ultimately resulted in the death of at least one patient. Dr. Nancy Olivieri's observing of academic ethics was also put in question when she inexcusably omitted warning data from her grant proposal to Canada's Medical Research Council seeking money for a long-term study of the drug. Further more, because of the media frenzy made by the publicity of the scandal, the otherwise helpful drug was basically blocked from the North American thalassemia patients.

A story always has two sides, or more. Perhaps we can say the same on the fact.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Academic Misconduct in its Deadliest Form

Merck deleted data of three heart attacks among Vioxx users before they submitted its study of the clinical trail to the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) in 2000.

Three additional patients who suffered heart attacks while taking Vioxx surfaced after the original cut-off date for information collection set by Merck researchers, but at least two weeks before submitting to the most prestigious US medical journal the first of two revisions, and four-and-a-half months before the actual publication. The extra three cases would have account for an extra 80 percent increase of heart attacks rick compared to naproxen, a generic over the counter painkiller. All three patients are in a group at low risk of heart attack.

The Journal published a rare Expression of Concern on December 8th, 2005 alleging Merck deliberated withhold the information from the journal and public after they recovered the deleted data from the original electronic media submitted by Merck for publication. The editorial found the last minute tweaks of data made certain calculations and conclusions in the article incorrect.

The Merck funded research was carried out by a team of twelve scientists. The clinical trail on Vioxx, code named VIGOR, was conducted at Toronto's Mount Sinai Hospital, where the lead author Dr. Bombardier holds a position.

In response to the editorial, Dr. Claire Bombardier of the University of Toronto said 'the VIGOR paper appropriately disclosed the data as per the pre-specified plan of analysis'. This is bullshit. Electronic records recently discovered from the computer diskette that had been submitted to the NEJM showed the numbers of heart attacks and deaths were deleted two days before submission.

Although Dr. Bombardier claimed that the missing data was later made available to FDA and the public, her 2000 paper was used extensively as strong argument for the drug's safety. "The health of the public, of many, many thousands of people, was at stake here', Dr. Geoffrey D. Curfman, the executive editor of the Journal said in an interview. He also noted that the authors deleted additional relevant data about strokes and other heart problems caused by the drug from their manuscript prior to submission.

The third author of the paper was Dr. Alise Reicin, Merck's vice president for clinical research. She is also accused of failing to reveal her Merck affiliation in the study's disclosure section. Dr. Reicin testified on December 7th, 2005 in a trail in Houston that the company never misled doctors and the public about studies linking heart attacks to Vioxx. Again, this is nothing but bullshit, and worse, it invites a perjury investigation. Dr. Eric Topol whose publication on Vioxx's safety in 2001. together with the exposure of several independent studies, leads to the drug's withdrawn in September 30th, gave an opposite story. When he noticed some discrepancies in Merck's data and contacted Merck, Dr. Alise Reicin paid him an unprecedented personal visit. She told Dr. Topol she couldn't get access to all the data. After Dr. Topol published his study, Merck launch a smear campaign sending letters to doctors all over the country to discredit his study. Merck also threatend Dr. Gurkirpal Singh, a professor of Stanford University and also a Merck consultant, of 'sevear consequences' if he kept studying the risk of Vioxx. Several top medical schools complained about a consistent pattern of intimidation of investigators by Merck. Dr. Topol accused Merck of engaging in scientific misconduct, suppressing clinical evidence and stifling medical disclosure in its promoting of the Vioxx.

The rest of the team is comprised of Drs. Loren Laine of University of Southern California, Deborah Shapiro of Merck, Ruben Burgos-Vargas of Hospital General de Mexico, Barry Davis of the University of Texas, Richard Day of the University of new South Wales, Marcos Bosi Ferraz of Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Christopher J. Hawkey of University Hospital in Nottingham UK, Marc C. Hochberg of the University of Maryland, Tore K. Kvien of Diakonhjemmet Hospital in Oslo Norway, Thomas J. Schnitzer of Northwestern University, Arthur Weaver of Arthritis Center of Nebraska Lincoln.

The painkiller was approved by FDA in 1999, and around 20 million people had been using Vioxx before its withdrawal in 2004. More than 7,000 lawsuits have been filed against Merck on Vioxx caused heart attacks and deaths, and many more are expected. In a June 9th, 2005 NPR report, it was estimated that at least 38,000 Americans were believed to have died from taking the painkiller. Because elevated risk of heart attacks only effects long-term users who had been using Vioxx for more than 18 months, had we known what Dr. Clair Bombardier decided to hide from us in her 2000 paper, many, if not all, of these lives could have been spared.

Moral Collapse of Chinese Intellectuals

The scandal that a Fudan University graduate tortured dozens of cats generated intensive discussion on the Chinese Internet community, with the great majority strongly condemned the crime, and asked for legislature on animal cruelty. However, there are also voices that this is no more than a misdemeanor, and that it shouldn't have been such a big deal. Specifically, some people argued that there were illiterate country workers who catch and eat cats everyday without drawing this kind of attention, and that Liangliang Zhang being a college student should not be treated differently.

When Liangliang Zhang's father Baihe Zhang receive an interview with East Morning, he emphasised that he's a senior intellectual, and that there was huge pressure of being a senior intellectual. He apparently thinks being an intellectual justifies ZLL behaving as a sub-human. This is not only disgusting, but also a shame of the Chinese society.

The 'intellectuals' are used to be the conscience of the society throughout Chinese civilization, until after the 1949, when Chairman Mao told them that they need to study from the proletariat. It was used as a way to humiliate the intellectuals, but now they are so used to it, that they no longer feel ashamed of it. They even started to make excuses out of it.

The society used to have a higher bar for intellectuals on always every aspects of social life, not to say count on them in time of adversity of the country. See what are they doing now? Doctors take kickback from salesmen, teachers exchange grades for money, college students torture kittens for fun.

We need to bring back the self esteem and pride of being an intellectual, and we can only achieve that before we correct what we did wrong. We should no longer play the trick of being a sub-proletariat to get away from behaving like a sub-human. We also should no longer sit indifferently when one of us doing just that.

Fudan Scissorhands, Fudan Scissorhands Update

Friday, December 09, 2005

Two Chinese Students Fatally Shot in Ottawa on Dec 6th, 2005

Linhai Tian(Bob) from Qinghai and Tailang Liu (太郎) from Inner Mongolia, two young promising lives were killed by a cold blood Vietnamese trash. Both 20 years old. Bod wrote in his profile, a simple person working on nontrivial stuff. 太郎 wrote, hard life is the steps to success. These were the dreams they had before the double homicide 2:45 am Dec 6th, 2005.

According to witnesses, five Chinese students went to a local Karaoke place, Fullhouse Karaoke Tea Cafe, on 718 Somerset St West late night. The Chinatown Karaoke Cafe is popular among local Chinese student community. The two students had an argument with a group of Vietnamese over the use of the bathroom. One Vietnamese later walked out the Cafe to retrieve a handgun, and forced into the room occupied by the Chinese students. The murderer shot 7 times at Tian sitting close to the door, and 2 times at Liu with the gun pointed at his left eye.

One local Chinese was angered by the slow investigation progress when he read the police's statement saying that the weapon was believed to be a 'semi-automatic handgun'. He questioned, "how come bullet shells were all over the place, and they still couldn't tell exactly what kind of gun is it".

Wish you two fellow Chinese students peace up above. At the least, you are with your good friend. Any Chinese who made comments on the cars they drive, shame on you!

Deadly Fight Began in Karaoke Bar's Bathroom, Ottawa Citizen, Thursday, December 08, 2005

Linhai Tian didn't even want to go to the Chinatown karaoke bar for a birthday party, but at around 1 a.m. Tuesday, his friends finally convinced him to go. Ninety minutes later, he was shot to death.

Mr. Tian, 20, had been just a few blocks away, finishing up rice noodles with the longtime girlfriend he followed to Ottawa from Shenzhen, China.

Mr. Tian, known to his friends as Bob, drove her back home, then headed to Fullhouse Karaoke and Bubble Tea, where he met up with best friend Tailang Liu, also 20.

Then, just after 2:30 a.m., the men got into an argument with an apparent stranger inside the Somerset Street West bar. It ended with the stranger drawing a handgun and shooting Mr. Liu once in the face, and pumping Mr. Tian with at least 10 bullets.

Yesterday, as police detectives worked around the clock to track the killer, Mr. Tian's girlfriend met with the Citizen. Shaken, running on little sleep, and fearing a gunman on the loose, Selina Mi said she wanted the public to know that her boyfriend's life was far removed from violence, let alone organized crime.

"Bob is not the kind of guy who would stir anything up. If anything, he was at the wrong place at the wrong time," she said. "We never even talked about gun violence because it was so far away from our world. As students, our life was isolated and pure," she said.

According to his friends, Mr. Tian spent his free time studying business administration at the library. An avid photographer, he would also wake up early, again and again, to try to capture the perfect sunrise in the city.

"He was a warm-hearted person to everyone around him. Now that he's gone, I want everybody to remember the good things about him. Everybody that knew him says it was unfair, and that this shouldn't be his fate," she said through a translator.

He and his girlfriend, also an international business student, had planned to take skiing lessons and hoped to one day make it to Niagara Falls, a place Mr. Tian had always talked about photographing.

Though he didn't sing on stage like his best mate, he was considered the life of the party, always cracking jokes.

He was a top student who made a name for himself on the side as the guy to call when you needed your computer fixed.

Once they arrived in Ottawa, the two men were inseparable, according to friends -- whether it was playing basketball, having a drink at the bar, or cruising the neighbourhood.

Mr. Tian had been taking English as a Second Language training at Carleton University before moving to Algonquin College's photography department this year. Mr. Liu was in the first year of the business administration program at Algonquin College.

Tall with long hair, Mr. Liu drove a light blue Ford Mustang, its seat covers decorated with stylized black and blue skulls, while Mr. Tian drove a silver Mercedes C230. Both cars, which had Quebec plates and featured Chinese flag stickers over the gas caps, were left parked one in front of the other at parking meters on the opposite side of Somerset Street West from the karaoke bar.

The two friends spent many weekends at the Ha-Ha Restaurant and Karaoke bar in the industrial district of Ottawa's east end. At the time, it was the city's only place set up with Asian karaoke tunes.

In October, Mr. Liu entered a karaoke contest and sang I'm a little bird -- a popular Chinese rock ballad about finding happiness and friendship.

He didn't make it to the finals, but he had a good voice, said bar owner Rudy Gao who called them both "good boys."

Making things worse, Ms. Mi, 22, was called to the Chinese Embassy yesterday, where she said an official kept asking her insulting questions. Was Mr. Tian a gambler? Did he owe a loan shark? "I feel extremely outraged with (wrong) assumptions that are insulting," she said.

He Zuoxiu Interviewed

He Zuoxiu was interviewed by South People Weekly on Dec 4th, 2005. What a living crap and a shame of the Chinese intellectuals!

Kaidi Net


文章提交者:2可器 加帖在 猫眼看人 【凯迪网络】



■《南方人物周刊》》记者 刘天时 发自北京



何祚庥 :你为什么认为小轿车(死人)是没法避免呢?为什么这就不是问题?哈,你这话就对了,没法避免!中国煤矿死人也没法避免!因为中国的老百姓太穷了。










何祚庥 :我不知道。我没看到(这样的评价)。我可以告诉你的是,我在进行理论物理研究时,每年发表文章10篇以上,算是高产的了。至于说贡献有多大,最好自己少说,由历史做结论。









何祚庥 :是的。曾经有一个可能性,但我拒绝了。从我的经历看,是可能的。改革开放后,我做理论物理所副所长,实际上是所长的权力,所长是我的老师,他把一切大权托付给我。何祚庥的话呢,1947年入党,没什么重大错误。领导也找我谈过。但是我考虑到我的个性不适合做官……
















1955 年10月《学习杂志》上发表了何祚庥的《论梁思成对建筑问题的若干错误见解》,近万言。文章开篇指出“他近年来所鼓吹的中国建筑的方向却有着严重的错误。”他认为梁思成片面地强调了建筑的艺术性,颠倒了建筑学中美观和适用、经济的正确关系。重视艺术性强的民用建筑,而非工用建筑,这与当时的建国方针不符。其次,梁思成所提倡的“民族形式”实际上是复古主义的主张,把“民族形式”看成是和现实生活无关、一成不变的范畴,和中国古代的宫殿、庙宇等建筑形式等量齐观起来。他还批判梁思成的建筑理论是直接违反总路线的错误理论,其错误思想源自资产阶级唯心主义。


40 Thousands Fingers

China Youth Daily article, "salary of foreign companies in China unchanged for 20 years". In the Zhujiang delta (Guangzhou and surrounding areas) alone, more than 30 thousands work related accident happened, and more than 40 thousands of fingers were cut by manufacturing machinery.

Postings I read on TianYa

Link to Original Posting on TianYa

作者:lilyyoki 回复日期:2005-12-9 02:03:08

作者:song_girl 回复日期:2005-12-8 14:45:51

作者:greenbird2000 回复日期:2005-12-8 15:46:02

作者:尤三姐 回复日期:2005-12-8 15:49:44



作者:鸵鸟般d爱 回复日期:2005-12-8 16:00:21 

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Fudan Scissorhands, Update

Link to the early blog

Little Bunny (right) is one of over 30(verified number, real number could be much higher) cats tortured and killed by cold blood Liangliang Zhang, a.k.a. ,yuhzll(Fudan BBS ID), a.k.a. Fudan Scissorhands(ID he registered after gouging out a kitten's eyeball with a pair of scissors) over a time period of less than 180 days. This is one of three pictures Bunny left to the world.

Now more about the incident and Liangliang Zhang himself has been made available. During an interview with East Morning, his father Baihe Zhang who is a senior officer in the People's Liberation Army, referred to himself as an 'senior intellectual' graduate from Yale University. With a physician's caring of details, he didn't fail to remind the reporter that Liangliang Zhang's grandfather was a senior Communism Party official. No wonder in an earlier encounter, Liangliang Zhang challenged the cat lovers to show him 100 million RMB ($12 million), or walk. He also praised that Liangliang Zhang has been 'brave' in handling the incident. The irony is, according to a posting by Liangliang Zhang himself, his father did not graduate from Yale University, but rather visited Yale one time in his life. When I was reading this, it is becoming clearer how a monster was raised up.

In an interview with University Weekly, a female Fudan student who refers herself as Xinxin (not real name) told the reporter her impression of Liangliang zhang was 'simple', 'fearfully simple'. Although she heard of some of Zhang's bad name such as release confidential information of online surfer obtained by his role as the master of the university BBS system, she could not believe Zhang did this to those innocent lovely kitten. According to Xinxin, Zhang is always polite with people, and even sometimes sky. On the other hand, Zhang is very smart, and active in social activities. Mr. Zhuge Hui, the associate director of the Fudan University Propaganda Department praised Zhang of being a high IQ student leader.

Little Autumn is another cat brutally abused and abandoned by the Fudan Scissiorhands. This is the only picture he left to this world. On October 20th, 2005, the cat lover MazelTov (Fudan BBS ID, her MSN ID is samanthamht1984)who rescued little autumn asked Liangliang Zhang whether she could visit the kitten. Liangliang Zhang replied her message saying little Autumn had been abandoned by his parents without his knowledge. MazelTov posted a blog that day, worried about little Autumn as it was chilly and raining outside. She didn't know little Autumn had already been tortured to death by the Fudan Scissiorhands. Another cat lover Bonypan (MSN ID), post a blog on December 3rd, 2005 vowing to revenge for his cat Jiaojiao who also fell victim of the Fudan Scissiorhands.

In additional to the Chinese online community, some traditional media as well as foreign language media also started to pick up the topic. Concerned readers can checkout from following links:

These two lovely kitten were among the dozens cats brutally tortured to death by the Fudan Scissiorhands. Their lives on this world were too short that they didn't even leave a name. We only know that they died within days, estimated from the interval before Liangliang Zhang "adopted" his next victim from the online chat room. However, they left endless memory to the animal lovers who rescued them on the street and looked for a welcoming cozy home for them. We were told a cat has nine lives to spare, and we can't even imagine what kind of abuses they suffered before their painful deaths in their short lives.

It is 30 Fahrenheit, feeling like 25 in Beijing when I am typing in my office with heater on. My cat is sleeping on my lap as usual. All the poor kitten could have asked is a little warm from the more powerful owners, Liangliang Zhang, and they were treated by cold sharp scissors.

This is yet another cat adopted by the Fudan Scissiorhands. Also she took everything she has with her when she left this world, although she can't take away our memories. And may the guilt of being an ugly human being stay in our hearts.

We also learned that Fudan University not only issued a prompt gag order on any information related to this incident, but they also called the students who revealed this to the outside and threatened them personally. Under the Communism system, Fudan University has jurisdiction over broad issues on campus. Their attitude is effectively an endorsement of what Liangliang Zhang did to the cats, which we angrily protest. However, under this system, the only way to have it corrected is communication with the Fudan University authorities. Readers can find the contact information of the Math Department of Fudan University in my initial report. You are encouraged to contact them for more information. More telephone numbers to call:

Department of Mathematics:
Communism Party Secretary: +86-21-65642340
Chairperson: +86-21-65642342, +86-21-65642344

Fudan University:
Communism Party Committee: +86-21-65642205
President: +86-21-65642240, +86-21-65642644
Propaganda Director: +86-21-65642610
Dean of Graduate School: +86-21-65643306
Provost: +86-21-65642273
Switchboard: +86-21-65642222, +86-21-65643333

The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated, Mahatma Gandhi

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Drinking Alcohol May Reduce Obesity Risk

A great news indeed. Together with last year's discovery on the Pizza's cancer fighting magic power, now the two main ingredients of my life, pizza and beer, are all justified.

Hiding Behind the BAR

Hiding Behind the BAR
Interesting and Insightful.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Xizhimen - 1900?

Xizhimen - 1900?
Originally uploaded by jiulong.

This gate (West Gate, a.k.a. Xizhimen) should be no more than 2 miles to where I work, if it still stood. Actually, I should have passed it thousands of times in the past 30 years, alas all after it was torn down. The pictures feels so familiar, though it looks so remote.

I am sending this picture to my Dad..

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Fudan Scissorhands

I read on MITBBS today about a graduate student of Fudan University in Shanghai who tortured dozens of cats to death for fun. According to the information revealed on MITBBS, PetSky and TianYa, Liangliang Zhang is a 3th year graduate student in Master program of Mathematics. His school BBS ID is yuhzll. He is also the Head of the Department of Propaganda, Graduate Students Association at Fudan University.

It was alleged that he adopted dozens of cats from his classmates, animal shelters and pet stores, only to have their eyes removed, and then either discarded or tortured to death. Some of these cats were originally rescued by cat loving students.

Some students of an online pet discussion forum noticed that he had adopted dozens of cats from members of that forum alone within a couple of months. One of the previous cat owner and her friends insisted in visiting his house to see how is the cat doing. They found the cat in a case, but the places used to hold the eyes were bleeding holes. The photo they took at the scene has been archived, but is determined too bloody to be displayed. Confronted by the students, Liangliang Zhang denied it's the same cat that he took from the previous owner. He told them the cat was purchased from a pet store with wound in eyes.

Under mounting pressure from Chinese Internet surfers and especially bloggers, Liangliang Zhang later confessed (voice recorded) that torturing cats had been a way for him to handle pressure, and that he had beaten several cats to death. The pictured cat found with bleeding eyes was stabbed by a pair of long sharp scissors more than 20 times. On the peak of the controversy, Liangliang Zhang registered an ID 'Fudan Scissorhands', which was booed as a contempt to the public outcry. The analogy couldn't be worse: in the 1990 movie, Edward Scissorhands is such as nice person that he won every body's heart, while the Fudan counterpart has little heart of his own.

With more information surfaced, it turned out that Liangliang Zhang had been caught with abusing cats approximately one month ago, but was let go as pet lovers wouldn't want to see his otherwise bright future doomed. He swore that he would never adopt cats from Fudan students, which he would have little chance to, as the online forum members alerted each other not to give him any cats. After that, he turned to local pet stores. Dozens more cats were beaten and stabbed to death. In his most recent posting title 'Last Confession', Liangliagn Zhang threatened that if he were not let go again, he would use all his life time searching for cats on every corner of the street, and torture them to death. At this point, the students were determined to alerte the public. Although Liangliang Zhang will not be punished by any legal measure with no animal cruelty law in existence in China, students wish their voice could be heard by all pet owners and shelter operators so that Liangliang Zhang will not obtain any cat in the future.

Confronted by fellow schoolmates, Liangliang Zhang touted that his father was a trustee of Fudan University. According to document online, there are two Fudan trustees whose names are Enzhao Zhang, and Rongkun Zhang. Because Zhang is one of the most popular family names among Chinese, it's not immediately clear whether either has family tie to Liangliang Zhang. However in a stunning move, Fudan authority abruptly closed an online forum where the incident was firstly reported and issued a gag order on any discussions surrounding this subject.

Liangliang Zhang has been actively seeking opportunities of advanced study in western counties such as the UK, Australia, Singapore, Canada and the US, correlated by his online posting records tracked by the pet caring community. In one post, he claimed he had an interview scheduled with the University of Cambridge at the time of writing.

Telephone numbers of Department of Mathematics of Fudan University
Chair: +86-21-65642344 Associate Chair: +86-21-65642342
Assistant: +86-21-65649916 Operation: +86-21-65642341
Communism Party: +86-21-65642340 Switchboard: +86-21-65642350

Working against the Law

No, 'not working against the law' costs money, and maybe lives.

It was reported that Princeton Professors Edward Felten and Alex Halderman submitted an application for a waiver to by-pass the digital protections of spywares. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DCMA) made it impossible or inconvenient to submit any such applications. The significance of this particular application is that the two people had known about the Sony rootkit malware, but didn't alert the society in fear of legal intricates. While they were sitting, thousands of people fell victim of Sony.

What did China do?

China has always been enjoying bad reputations on blocking information exchange over Internet, which was nicknamed 'the Great Firewall'. What exactly did China do to earn this name?

A Vegas based company Verso is contracted by the government monopoly China Telecom to supply techniques to block VoIP applications, including skype. China has long been accused of blocking information exchange on the Internet, however, it's always the western that came with the idea on how. One of my friends in China, work unfortunately works in the area of supplying VoIP to people, has to work on technique to subdue the western technology. Verso sucks.

Also, China has long been accused of being the origins of junk EMails. However, most of those EMails are US originated, taking advantage of unprotected Chinese hosts as relays.

Also recently, South Korea made a big deal on the quality of Kimchi imported from China. It turned out that all Kimchi made in China were produced by Korean factories run by Koreans, and operated by Koreans. In response, China inspected Kimchi made in Korea, and found just as many quality issues. Now many people in China stopped eating Kimchi.

Friday, December 02, 2005


"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts." Bertrand Russel

Well I don't recall where did I read this, "I am too old to be capable to indulge myself, while I'm too young to be able to pretend indifference".

"I hate flowers – I paint them because they’re cheaper than models and they don’t move." Georgia O'Keefe

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Slow Netflix service

I have been a happy Netflix customer until very recently. Their turnaround time suddenly more than doubled, and they started to send out many corrupt or even cracked disks. The latter is more likely a growing problem, but the former is very suspicious at look.

Under profound frustration, I did what I used to do, that is Googling about this on the Net. What I found was astonishing, see this link, and specifically, this link. I was not a conspiracy theorist, but I have been so amazed by how many otherwise seemingly 'big' companies playing some 'small' tricks. Netflix is slow.