Dashed high-hopes for China - Part 2

Posted On: Tuesday - May 5th 2020 10:22AM MST
In Topics: 
  China  Bible/Religion  iEspionage

(continued from previous post)

Even just a couple of years after that first, enlightening visit to China, things had visibly changed a bit to me. Upon going into one of those "cafes" to take care of some business (still well before the time of pervasive smart phone usage, here and there), I was asked for an ID in order to surf the web. I refused and left. This was not paranoia - the place is certainly nothing like 1970 (even 1980s, per John Derbyshire) China. Whatever I did on the computer, I didn't expect anyone anywhere in China to really care. Business is business over there, after all. This is just my way - as I discussed in Inflation and the point(s) of shopping by price, if people don't make their preferences known, things won't change. Money talks.

Fine, I was able to get a non-secured signal off an apartment near where we were staying. Since I stayed in the location for quite a while, I got to know the ups and downs of this guy's router pretty damn well. He needs a better router, I can tell you that right now! (Well, I'd have told him, but I neither spoke Chinese nor knew exactly the REDACTED* network broadcasting location.) I could still pull up gunowners, the American Spectator, old-timey Steve Sailer, and whatever else I was into at the time.

That's a small thing, right? More recently, I found out, as we visited China, that getting a cheap cell phone and an anonymous one (if that had happened to matter) was out of the question. Of course, it's all smart phones now, and they are tailor made for iEspionage. Face it, whatever CAN be done with them, WILL be, unless the people are very vigilant. Neither the Chinese people nor the American people are at all vigilant about it, so ... there ya' go. Here's the rest of it: An individual or family is now limited in how many phones they are allowed have on the network, and one must present his Identity card - a bigger deal than our Driver's Licenses (oops, till REAL ID, that is) - to get one.

Just to explain here, we might have gotten one of our phones unlocked to use there, but there was some reason it was easier to borrow someone else's. My point is that there is no anonymity for anything done on these hand-computers.

Well, if you've done nothing wrong, you've got nothing to worry about, right? That sounds more Chinese-style than patriotic American, but then most Americans just don't care anymore.

Let me mention contrasts from the points I made in Part 1: The traffic is much more controlled in the big cities**. I gotta say that I can't blame them on this, but it sure ruins my image of the place.

In China over a decade ago airport security was more of a formality to fit in with the foreign airlines' requirements. There were some cuties involved for whom I was not at all adverse to being felt up by, were they up for it, I gotta admit! Now, or 2 years back, man, it was quite a bit worse than the shitshow of Security Theater in America. I think there were TWO extra stops, and then there was that big no-weapons sign, one of those big pieces of film with holes on the glass dealies. I made a point to stand there and take a picture of it, something that was perhaps disconcerting to the Authoritah around, but, well, fuck 'em.

Just short decade ago, China was a mostly cash-ONLY*** economy (still continued in their Chinatowns in America due to advice from "tax accountants"). Many of them having skipped the entire land-line phone era ("Who is this Alexandle Glaham Berr of which you speak?"), Chinese people have taken to cell phones, and now the smart ones, with a vengeance. Just about anyone who is not still living out in the sticks making $500 a year has a WeChat account for all types of communication. Anything that can be done on them will have an "app for that". One of these "conveniences" is the cashless payments that can be made via the computer all but the old folks have in their back pockets (front in the big city, you know, theft and all).

This cashless payment thing, along with the Social Credit business that I've heard about but have no personal stories about, are getting very close to the Book of Revelation "Mark o' the Beast" stuff. Think about how little Apostle John, the writer of Revelation, could have imagined regarding even bar codes and readers, much less the level of electronics in the smart phone and RFID chips that can also be used to easily implement the evil prognosticated therein.

Now, I don't claim to understand all the rest of the this last Book of the Bible tries to illuminate for us. What that multi-faced beast business is about is a mystery to me. Peak Stupidity has highlighted the possible AntiChrist candidates before, some of whom may not be humans after all. The Hildabeast could easily represent something straight out of the BofRev, but then, who are the other 3 Horsepersons of the Apocalypse?

To summarize here, China does not represent the future of freedom in the world, as it did to me in some ways 1 1/2 decades back. Things are no longer headed in the right direction over there, no matter how new and cool the infrastructure is, and how prosperous the Chinese people are quickly becoming.

By this point, and with these 2 posts, the long-term reader may understand that Peak Stupidity is about the truth of stupidity all around the world. We are not particularly anti-China or anti-Chinese, and have even made one apology to our Chinese readers. (Admittedly, it's one of those half-assed apologies that you'll get often from a politician!)

* REDACTED sounds better than "this was a long time ago, and I can't remember shit".

** In Canton, what they call Guangzhou now, motorcycles are banned in the city limits (or were about 10 years back, anyway). This law was made due to too many incidents of thefts of women's purses done by motorcyclists "on the fly". Yet, they'll tell you there's not much crime in China. Bull.

*** Great anecdote here on some personal Chinese financial dealings. There I was, getting close to out of cash, and during this trip (not my 1st), the bank machines would give me no money (usually wads of the highest denomination, Chinese ¥100s, red bills with good old Chairman Mao on 'em, each like a $15 bill, roughly). (I found out later that my home bank's anti-abuse software had kicked in on this trip, and I later made sure to notify the bank ahead. Fair enough on that, as I appreciate that software being on the ball.)

Well, when the banks opened on Monday, I and a Chinese lady went inside to straighten this out, her knowing Chinese and all... "They want to see your passport." OK, well the 1st hangup is that the Chinese don't use middle names. We do. Shit didn't match!

OK, maybe we'll get past that one, but who in the heck is this gentleman named "See ID" who had signed the card? "Huh?! Just who do you think we are, lady, some rural peasants born yesterday?! Not all Gweilo's**** rook arrike" OK, that's my best translation from, you know, the looks on all their faces. "Show me the passport of Mr. See ID, and then we can get somewhere." I got no currency and had to borrow some during the trip. Did this lesson on inconvenience change my mind about the Mark 'o the Beast? Not hardly!

**** "White ghosts"

Tuesday - May 5th 2020 6:02PM MST
PS: On the Nielsen Survey, I've had them send it to me 3 times so far. Since it's not the government, I felt like I'd at least do the courtesy of answering honestly for those 2 dollar bills (last time may have been 3, yipeee!).

It's just that last time around I truthfully had not watched the TV the whole week period. The fact that the receiver has not been in use for about 5 years (and before that only for "The Office" reruns), due to not having Cable in 20 years and even the digital-signal antenna I put on the roof for my wife had its cable torn out due to wind some years back explains this.

So, just so they wouldn't think I was being a dick about it, I did put in a 5-minute time for watching TV weather channels for the radar picture, something we used to do years back, on a couple of the days.

It's been a couple of years since this last time, so now I can rest easy, figuring if they haven't called Lon Horiuchi of the FBI by now, telling him I'm the next David Koresh or Ted Kazynski, I should be good.
Tuesday - May 5th 2020 5:42PM MST
PS: I see, Robert. Well the form I had when I wrote that 3rd post was 8 pages. I only perused the first 3 or so, so perhaps it was just about who exactly we all are living here, SS# and that, but there must have been something more than that. I'll never know...
Tuesday - May 5th 2020 5:42PM MST
PS: Mr. Moderator, yes, my Mother will be available (and probably was this time, except I didn't want to interrupt her cooking dinner) and will answer their questions.

Although what counts as the household is a little complicated in this case, and she will take a lot of their time to try to get them to define the term.

She kept the Nielson Survey people on the line for almost an hour over this and other details.
Tuesday - May 5th 2020 5:32PM MST
PS: I shouldn't post when I am in a hurry.

I forgot to add --- They apparently no longer do the Long Form Census. This is replaced by the American Community Survey, a monthly event.

No longer a simple count. No longer once a decade.
Tuesday - May 5th 2020 5:31PM MST
PS: Robert, search on this site is sub-par, by which we mean non-existent, as of yet. Even for me, I'll go through topic keys to find titles (course I have the data to peruse if I need to).

Here are the 3 recent posts on the census:


Will your mother ever be available? (Just curious ... to find out how much fun you were having.)

Interesting factoids from the Census Bureau - you'd be surprised how many various US Feral Gov't agencies have employees that go down to Glynco (Brunswick, Georgia) to get trained how to shoot. Commenter Adam Smith recently noted that the IRS tells us compliance is voluntary too. They seem to take this voluntary compliance much more seriously than the Census Bureau. I wish it were the other way around.

"THEY have come to the door three times, and I have lined the hosehold up, and said, This is how many people live here. Nothing more. Once they came back for a second and even third try." Good on you, Robert! That's been my response when a guy came by once or twice.
Tuesday - May 5th 2020 4:30PM MST

I couldn't (not that I tried very hard) find your post on the Census, so I am putting this here.

I just received a call from the fine folks at the U.S. Census, about the American Community Survey. The lady was polite and, when I told her I wouldn't tell them anything more than how many people were in the household, she asked if there were anyone else who would answer the questions --- showing some intelligence, and that she actually listened to me (or perhaps just good training), so I suggested that she try again, and maybe my Mother would be available.

A quick look on the all-knowing Wiki Beast reveals:


Those who decline to complete the survey may receive visits to their homes from Census Bureau personnel. Because it is a mandatory survey, it is governed by federal laws that could impose a fine of as much as $5,000 for refusing to participate.

(OOOH, Scary)

To date, no person has been prosecuted for refusing to answer the ACS.[36] Former Director of the Census Bureau Kenneth Prewitt remarked that the Department of Commerce is "not an enforcement agency" and that "the Department of Justice would have to do the prosecution, and we don't recommend that."[37]

(Is a Rule that is not enforced stile a rule?)

The Census Bureau prefers to gain cooperation by convincing respondents of the importance of participation,

(Because Sheep are easier to manage.)

while acknowledging that the mandate improves response rates (and thus accuracy) and lowers the annual cost of survey administration by more than $90 million.[38]


P.S. I have never yet answered a Census survey. THEY have come to the door three times, and I have lined the hosehold up, and said, This is how many people live here. Nothing more. Once they came back for a second and even third try.
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