The Year of the Tiger: The Chinese Century

Napolean once commented that China is a sleeping tiger, and he famously said that “let him sleep, for if he awakes, the whole world will be shaken”.

If the nineteenth century was the Century of the British Empire, the 20th the Century of the United States, this 21st century will probably be the Century of CHina. This is not my opinion, even though I concur; this is the opinion carried in the following article, published on CNY day by The Independent of UK. You can also read it here.

The Year of the Tiger: The Chinese century

Today, China celebrates its New Year. But how much do we really know about the economic powerhouse in the east – and what lies in store for the rest of the world? Rupert Cornwell, Clifford Coonan, Hamish McRae and Greg Walton hunt down the answers



The pace and extent of China’s ascent among nations has been remarkable. Barely 20 years ago, it went virtually unnoticed. Today it is an economic superpower – if not (at least yet) a cultural and military one.

By every measure it is a rising power. It is now the world’s second- biggest economy behind the United States, and some experts predict it will overtake the US within two decades. It has overtaken Germany to become the world’s largest exporter. It holds the largest foreign-currency reserves on earth, more than $2 trillion (£1.3 trillion). Barring a collision between China’s authoritarian politics and its economic liberalisation – the paradox of “Confucian capitalism” – this momentum will surely continue.

Despite its progress, China certainly has great potential weaknesses: a poor rural population and ethnic tensions, to name but two. It is also the world’s greatest polluter. But its public infrastructure programme dwarfs anything in the West. In that sense especially, its centralised and authoritarian system is a source of strength, enabling decisions to be taken and vital projects to be launched without the delays that often hold up such investment elsewhere.

The West’s economic travails have, if anything, made China yet more confident and assertive, and more dismissive of criticism from abroad – be it of its human rights record or its manipulation of the yuan’s exchange rate. The fact is that money, not gunboats, gives huge muscle to a diplomacy whose goals are mercantilist rather than ideological. When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, it seemed a foregone conclusion that the 21st, like the 20th, would be an “American Century”. Now, for the first time in almost a millennium, a Chinese century is on the cards.

Where does China rank compared with other leading economies?

Though China’s $8.8 trillion gross domestic product figure is the world’s third highest, its per capita GDP rank is far lower, at $127, only just above Ukraine’s. The US by comparison has the highest GDP of any economy and the 10th highest per capita. But China is growing fast. Many Western countries, including Britain, have barely increasing GDP figures, whereas Chinese officials expect an 8 per cent increase, at least, for 2010.

How many Chinese are there? What are the population projections?

China’s population is expected to peak at around 1.4 billion, but we could see the emergence of an enlarged population of urban, educated children – including long-out-of-favour girls – who will contribute to China’s ongoing expansion. China’s urban population right now is more than 540 million, which dwarfs the entire EU. This largely agricultural society is being rapidly transformed into a country teeming with megacities.

The country’s urban population is currently dispersed across 661 big, medium and small cities; more than 100 of these have the stated aim of transforming themselves into internationalised metropolises or megacities. By 2025, at least 220 Chinese cities will have more than one million people, compared with 35 for the whole of Europe. Some 300 million rural dwellers will migrate to the cities in the next 20 years.

How much of the world’s resources is China consuming?

China now consumes around 40 per cent of the world’s aluminium compared with only 2 per cent in 1970. Its appetite for natural resources is highlighted by the recent passage of laws banning the export of metals used in the manufacture of fuel cells for hybrid vehicles. The government has also amassed the world’s largest reserves of several precious metals – including indium, used in touchscreens – driving up prices and provoking fears of shortages.

What else are they doing with those resources?

While China’s export industry still takes the lion’s share of imported raw materials, domestic infrastructure projects and house building are also putting strain on a number of commodities. The country’s fledgling middle class is steadily establishing the world’s largest housing market, with forecasts indicating that China could have as many as 78 million new homeowners by 2013. The expansion of cities is driving up demand for cement in particular. Economists have forecast that China will consume 40 per cent of the entire global supply of cement during 2010, having maintained an average annual growth rate of 25 per cent over the past 10 years. The construction equipment industry grew by around 20 per cent in 2009, and 50 per cent of the world’s tall cranes are now to be found in China.

How much does China export?

China took the title of the world’s leading exporter from Germany only last week. In 2009, it earnt $1.23trn, relegating Germany to second place. The US buys close to 18 per cent of all Chinese exports, making it by far the largest market for China’s goods. The downturn resulted in a dramatic drop in US consumption, leading Beijing to reconsider the country’s reliance on the American consumer.

Much of China’s success as an exporter depends on low costs. What happens when, inevitably, China’s costs rise as living standards go up?

China has to go upmarket. Already the higher-cost regions of China, most notably Shanghai, are moving out of mass-manufacturing and into more complex manufacturing and high-added-value services. But for another couple of decades there will be a plentiful supply of labour as people move away from less-developed regions towards big cities, so it will be able to contain costs for some years yet. It is investing heavily in training.

What economic power does China have over other countries?

China’s power shows up in three main ways: as a purchaser, mostly of raw materials; as a supplier to the rest of the world; and as an investor of its spare cash.

In relation to the first, it has had a huge impact on Africa. It funds more infrastructure in Africa than all the aid of Western nations put together, much in exchange for raw materials. As supplier to the world, it has helped hold down living costs elsewhere by producing so many cheap goods. For example, it produces two-thirds of the world’s socks. As an investor, it has by and large bought financial assets – US Treasury securities in particular – rather than buying foreign firms. So it has not exerted its power in any direct way.

How much of the US commercial sector does China own?

Surprisingly little, given its vast exports to the US. Although China holds hundreds of billions of dollars of US government and corporate debt, as of 2007 its declared direct investment totalled barely $1bn, mostly in the wholesale trade sector. That figure almost certainly understates reality: a further $5bn may have been invested by offshore holding companies ultimately owned by China. But if protectionist sentiment grows in the US, and the gap in labour costs between the two countries narrows, then both politics and economics may well push China to boost its direct investment sharply over the coming decade.

Are relations with the US worsening?

Right now they are, and given that the world’s most important bilateral relationship is the one between Washington and Beijing, that matters to everyone. The most visible friction has been over US plans to sell $6bn of arms to Taiwan, but other issues fester. China is the biggest obstacle to genuinely tough UN sanctions against Iran, and Washington is suspicious of China’s moves to lock in long-term raw material deals with poor countries in Africa and elsewhere. The most serious US accusation is that China unfairly holds down the yuan’s exchange rate. A trade war is not to be ruled out.

What is it doing with its spare cash?

in addition to extensive investment in overseas projects, mainly mining and other raw materials, the Chinese state has cautiously invested in foreign companies and is now the world’s fifth-largest sovereign wealth fund. China’s $227bn of state investment in foreign companies includes a 1 per cent stake in BP, 1.7 per cent in the French oil giant Total, as well as stakes in IBM’s laptop division and MG Rover. A 30 per cent decline in the value of China’s investment in the US-based wealth management firm Blackstone only months after the initial venture triggered widespread criticism and partly explains China’s caution. China has also grown its stockpile of gold by 454 tonnes in 2003 to around 1,100 tonnes now.

Where is it investing?

China is expanding its presence in Africa and Latin America through joint ventures, as well as buying stock in US and European blue-chip companies, although, as explained above, Beijing’s strategy is cautious. Official figures show that there are more than 1,000 China-backed projects in Africa and 750,000 Chinese workers in Africa, but these numbers are thought to be an underestimate. China has also rapidly expanded its presence in Latin America, signing 20 oil deals with Venezuela and a $10bn loan to Petroleo Brasileiro in return for a long-term daily supply of 160,000 barrels. According to government figures, China established 59 new projects, which created 607 new jobs, in the UK between 2008 and 2009. Britain receives more Chinese direct investment than any other EU country, according to the auditors Ernst & Young. The tech company Huawei is the largest Chinese corporate investor in Britain, and conducts research and development of fibre optic technology with BT in Ipswich. Its European HQ in Basingstoke employs 750 people.

What benefits do we in the West enjoy because of China’s success?

There have been three main benefits. The first was clear-cut. Cheap goods from China not only boosted the standard of living in the West but also helped hold down inflation, putting downward pressure on prices everywhere and enabling the growth phase to continue without capacity shortages. The second and third were more nuanced. The positive result from this increased competition was that weaker producers in the West had to improve their productivity and quality to compete. But those that failed to lift their game went out of business or at least had to shed workers. The third result, increased competition for raw materials, brought benefits to many countries, including in sub-Saharan Africa. That region had its best economic performance for five decades. But elsewhere countries had to compete for more expensive commodities, and that created problems, too.

China’s currency is seriously under-valued. Might this change, and what would it mean for the dollar?

The yuan will rise against all other currencies, not just the dollar. But this will happen in a controlled manner as the Chinese authorities do not want to make their exporters suddenly less competitive. They will, however, welcome cheaper foreign raw materials.

What sort of banking system does China have? Are any of the problems we have had with banks being experienced there?

China’s banks are the world’s biggest by a long way. Based on market capitalisation, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) is the world’s biggest bank. A casual glance makes these banks appear profligate, loaning about 100 billion yuan (£9.38bn) a day in the early part of this year, but China’s banks have been very smart in their choices. To start with, they have had a state guarantee, and are not betting on an absurdly inflated property market. Not yet, anyway.

The first 11 months of 2009 saw a record 9.21 trillion yuan (£860bn) of new bank loans, an influx of credit that fuelled a construction boom and a surge in business investment.

Is China’s economy becoming a true market one? Or it is still a command one with heavy subsidies?

China’s economy is not a market economy, and is a heavily subsidised one, but does anyone know what that means any more, now that the biggest banks in the world are owned by the US and British governments? The speed with which Western governments intervened to bail out the greedy banks of their respective countries gave the dirigiste government in China a lot of hope. No one knows what a subsidy means any more. You don’t have a big mortgage issue in China, for example, and to default on a loan is unthinkable for a Chinese family.

How does life expectancy in China compare with the West?

According to US government statistics, China’s average life expectancy stands at 71 for men and 75 for women, which is higher than that of EU members Hungary and Bulgaria. Despite this, there remains a significant disparity between the quality of life enjoyed by those living in wealthier urban areas, who earn on average 3.5 times more than those living in poorer, rural settings. Here, both life expectancy and infant mortality rates are significantly worse than the national average. The infant mortality rate fell by 39.5 per cent between 1990 and 2005 and currently stands at 20.25 deaths per 1,000 live births, compared with 4.85 in the UK. China’s official poverty rate fell from 53 per cent in 1981 to 2.5 per cent in 2005, though around 11 per cent of people survive on less than $1 a day.

Just how big is the Red Army these days?

China’s 2.3 million strong People’s Liberation Army is the world’s largest military, and it is very much in the hands of the Communist Party. In addition, there are 800,000 reservists and a People’s Armed Police of 1.5 million.

In other countries, sudden prosperity has brought liberal reforms. Is there a tipping point when this will happen in China?

China’s tipping point is the world’s biggest gamble. Everywhere else in the Communist-ruled world in 1989, the government made a decision not to open fire on its democracy activists. In most Warsaw Pact countries, they held back, and were pretty much all transformed into democracies with varying degrees of success. China opened fire on its freedom demonstrators. It jailed, or exiled, most of its troublemakers, and then wooed the Western business community back. There is little sign that President Hu Jintao is keen to implement liberal reforms, although people are looking to the next administration to see what that brings.

As China does more business with the world, is there any sign that human rights are improving?

China constantly says that human rights issues are domestic matters and that foreign governments have no business interfering. There are no signs that human rights are improving. China doesn’t concern itself much with the issue: the rest of the world needs it too much, so the debates about human rights have largely gone out the window. Traditionally, foreign companies working in China have been slow to criticise the government on human rights and freedom of speech, and the prevailing ethos is that engaging with China is a way of creating a more favourable environment which will ultimately lead to greater freedoms.

And finally… Just how bad is China’s pollution?

China, the world’s biggest producer of greenhouse gases, has set an ambitious target to cut its carbon footprint, and pollution has improved in recent years. It is still bad – there are days when you would avoid going out if you could. But it leads the world in manufacturing sustainable energy products, so perhaps there is hope.


34 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. svmbanu
    Feb 20, 2010 @ 13:34:38

    At the end of the day the only question that remains is ‘are the Chinese people happy & satisfied with their lives’. Only those living in & within China can answer.

    Just like here in M’sia only we (who live in & within M’sia) can answer that question, no matter what the others say (tourists or immigrant workers).

    One must understand that the Rulers of China (the Communist Party of China) are afraid of its own people. They are only interested in maintaining their status quo.

    Furthermore what does one means by progress, development & advancement in our present world? At the end of the day a successful nation / government will be to work for the benefit / betterment of its people.

    China is still a poor nation. No one wants to be a ‘prostitute’ unless the circumstances forces one into for survival etc. Just look at the large numbers of ‘Chinese women from China engaged in this trade. Its not only here but all over the globe. This is a fact. This is an indication of the actual situation within China, which many people are not aware of or refuse to realize.

    The people of China will have to take steps / measures to eventually overcome all obstacles for their betterment of their lives. I’m certain they will eventually.


  2. disgusted
    Feb 20, 2010 @ 16:45:14

    Today’s material progress doesn’t make much sense. People earning and owning more physical wealth but mentally deteriorating and spiritually and morally bankrupt.

    And planet earth can take only so much with global over population and resources running short and polluted.

    It brings back the fundamental question: progress for what?

    Svmnanu is right in asking those fundamental questions. Yes, a nation with a big population needs to live, eat and trade etc etc.

    But it doesn’t answer the question how long can it sustain and remaining so. Whatever it achieves, there are still individuals left out in impoverishment. Something is wrong with the policy and philosophy, or should we just say, “Life is like that” “Nothing can be done” or just push the question aside.

    But one thing is sure, this planet earth cannot last forever.


  3. klm
    Feb 21, 2010 @ 11:17:42

    The rise of China is inevitable. Once woken, it is like the caterpillar, eating voraciously on the earth’s resources. It is now transforming into a butterfly. Will it be short lived?


  4. BabaNyonya
    Feb 22, 2010 @ 05:46:28

    When I was a small boy, my Poh Poh (grandma) would say to me: finish your rice – think of the starving people in China. What she meant was: we should be thankful to be in Malaysia where there is enough to eat, and not in China or India where people were dying of famine and lived in poverty. We felt sorry for them.

    Now China and India are progressing rapidly. In 30 years, will people from China/ India be the ones feeling sorry for us instead? Will they be saying: how thankful we are not to be living in Malaysia, where our cousins suffer discrimination and are 2nd class citizens?

    What was up is down. What was down is now up. Such is fate.


  5. tonyboneka
    Feb 22, 2010 @ 06:49:16

    This clearly is a superficial report on China for western audiences who are losing their pride. Don’t take the words seriously. China has fundamental problem – corruption. I sometimes wonder whether China has already at its peak. If there is a boom, there is likely a bust.


  6. klm
    Feb 22, 2010 @ 11:15:45

    I refer to the article in MI Mukhriz : New economy model in line with NEP.

    …”Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir said this was in line with previous policies particularly the New Economic Policy (NEP).”

    Looks like Malaysia is going backwards. It seemed to me Malaysia will be sleeping through the first of the 21st century just like it did the second half of the 20th century.

    My friends. It is time to make some serious personal decisions.

    1. Make plan to move out or
    2. Make plan to be more active and assertive in protecting your rights.

    Doing nothing is not an option anymore.


  7. CYC
    Feb 22, 2010 @ 14:41:59

    When we keep on focusing on GDP, what is our GNH (Gross National Happiness)? GNH as a measurement initiated by Bhutan to gauge their nation’s feeling or satisfaction towards life.

    Why are we so engross with GDP growth when it does not really bring us any happiness even when growth still exist. Our economic model focusing solely on GDP must be flawed and review is badly needed. Can we keep on enlarging economic pie without limit ? Or why do we need to enlarge it by creating consumption even though the need does not arise to merit such increase? Are we creating something artificial just to satisfy our craving for that magic GDP/GNP figure? Are we not wasting/ over utilising natural resources all for the sake of attaining higher GDP/GNP?

    For anything attain to optimisation, it must first look for an equilibrium point. Have we actually forgotten this basic theory?


  8. Meng
    Feb 22, 2010 @ 14:43:15

    Looks like the chinese in malaysia have never learn’t anything at all. Got slap left and right and yet vote in umno???

    How pitiful…they want to be bullied,deprived… second class citizen, pendatang, prostitute…and given a banana they vote for umno….umno playing with monkeys and the chinese are the monkeys.

    Chinese new year and najib is going round giving out bananas….to chinese monkeys…clapping and cheering. These stupid monkeys will vote in umno in the next GE and the start of umno hunting season for the next 5 years. Again don’t question this and that..pendatang..balik negeri china..tak suka boleh keluar..prostitute…must be grateful…when will the chinese learn????


  9. disgusted
    Feb 22, 2010 @ 15:30:56

    Kim, “not” sleeping but “rotting:,

    Hibernating is not too bad but “rotting.”

    You can see the tribal chief is like campaigning now going around bullshitting, as usual.

    Just for the :votes: pity.

    If 2012 really comes true, we will be literally wiped out.

    No visions, no progress, no contingency plans for disasters.

    Nothing, z-e-r-o

    Still begging for the votes (the small shit of paper with a cross.


  10. frank
    Feb 22, 2010 @ 21:26:45

    A friend from Australia mailed me this article and for sharing with the readers here. It’s up to you to digest such statement and form your own ‘perception’….

    (Statement by Hon. Michael Danby, Chairman, Australian Parliamentary Subcommittee on Foreign Affairs
    Share – Today at 10:08am)

    Tonight, I want to speak out on behalf of fellow democrats around Asia, who are flabbergasted at events unfolding in Kuala Lumpur. I refer to the trial which began today of the Malaysian Opposition Leader, Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim. For the second time, the Malaysian leader of the Opposition, Anwar Ibrahim is on trial for what they call in ancient grating English, ‘Sodomy’. For the second time, the Malaysian legal system is being manipulated by supporters of the incumbent government to drive Malaysia’s best known leader Anwar Ibrahim out of national politics. For the second time, documents are being forged, witnesses are being coerced, evidence is being fabricated.

    This trial, like the first trial of Anwar Ibrahim, is a disgrace to Malaysia a country that aspires to democratic norms, where parties change power peacefully and political opponents are not persecuted by organs of the state. Perverting the legal system for political ends by charging Anwar with sexual offences is an affront to human rights. In the first place, the offences with which Anwar has been charged that should not be on the statute book. Australia abolished its laws punishing consenting adult homosexual acts decades ago, as did most advanced countries. It’s long past time that Malaysia also repealed these laws, which it inherited from British colonial times. If these laws did not exist, they could not be used for political purposes as we are currently seeing.

    In the second place, everyone in Malaysia, and everyone in the international legal community, knows that Anwar is innocent of these charges. This week the Wall Street Journal published a first-hand account of how the Malaysian Special Branch police fabricated the charges that led to Anwar’s first trial in 1998. Munawar Anees recalled how he had been starved and beaten into signing a false confession which implicated Anwar. Now it’s happening again. These are the lengths to which the corrupt elements within the Malaysian ruling party are willing to go to frame Anwar and remove his threat to their power.

    Malaysia is a long-time friend and ally of Australia. Over the past 40 years Malaysia has become an increasingly prosperous and successful multi-cultural society. We continue our friendly and mutually beneficial relationship with Malaysia, which is a deep economic, strategic and cultural relationship.

    But Malaysia is also a country of 28 million people who have lived ever since independence more than 50 years ago under the rule of the same party, the United Malay National Organisation or UMNO. UMNO has stayed in power by playing on the Malay fears of the Chinese and Indian minorities. So long as Malaysian politics were polarised even subtlety along racial lines, so long as the Malays voted loyally for UMNO, then the self-perpetuating UMNO oligarchy, who have grown rich through long years of power and through their cozy links to business, would be safe.

    That’s why Anwar Ibrahim is such a threat. For the first time Malaysia has a charismatic Malay opposition politician able to appeal to Malay voters and pose a real threat to UMNO’s hold on power. At the 2008 elections Anwar’s People’s Justice Party and its allies won 60 seats away from UMNO and its allies, creating a viable two-party system for the first time. As a result, Abdullah Badawi was deposed as Prime Minister and replaced by Najib Razak, but the threat from Anwar’s coalition continues to grow. So even though the first attempt to frame Anwar on these spurious charged had failed, the corrupt forces within UMNO have decided to try again.

    I recently had the privilege of meeting Anwar Ibrahim when he was in Melbourne for the Parliament of the World’s Religions in December. He is an intelligent and articulate and passionate democrat. He is committed to a thorough reform of Malaysian government, to rid it of the cronyism, corruption and authoritarian tendencies that have gained ground since Mahathir Mohammed became Prime Minister in 1981. He is a great, although not uncritical, friend and admirer of Australia. If he were to become Malaysia’s Prime Minister our relationship with Malaysia would become even stronger.

    I am pleased that in the last few hours the judge has suspended the case against Anwar for a day. I hope Prime Minister Najib and his ministers are not involved. The best way for them to prove that they are not is to intervene and have these charges withdrawn, and those responsible for fabricating them punished. Malaysia is a great country, and an emerging power in our region. It can do without the embarrassment that these disgraceful proceedings are undermining its newly won democratic credibility.



  11. svmbanu
    Feb 22, 2010 @ 22:07:39

    China’s embassy in Zimbabwe throws a birthday party for President Robert Mugabe, a rare sign of foreign support for a leader reviled by many Zimbabweans.

    Is this what you call an example of world leadership in the making?



  12. frank
    Feb 23, 2010 @ 11:36:19

    For one or more political reasons, China is supporting those Junta government of Myammar, North Korean and even Robert Mugabe could be friend of the Chinese government which is not too surprising for as long as Chinese there in the China town at Zimbawe are being taken care of by the dictator Robert, a devil in the eyes of the democratic and peace loving global citizens though!

    As long as those rivals to the US, the revolt opponents to the so-called democratic capitalists are being seen capable to befriend with the mammoth social capitalist, China. Bank of China is out to give out hefty loans subject to condition of Chinese entrepreneurs must have their cuts in the economic cakes, and or the mega infra structural development projects which worth billions or trillions! Such loans are giving out to those needy and thirsty 3rd world countries with Bolehland not exempted.

    The Chins government regardless of other global citizens’ feelings, may have adopted their own philosophy of ruling the world guided by their set of political agenda, mainly prone to the adoption of the Communist ideology. The astronautic figure of national reserve and the robust economic growth is their unassailable weapon and the baits!

    Just my 2 cents.


  13. klm
    Feb 23, 2010 @ 11:43:23

    svmbanu. Have you forgotten that Malaysia gave a plane load of timber to Robert Mugabe to build his palace. Mind you, the timber were sent by plane. Just imaging the cost. So what is wrong with birthday party. It is cheaper to bodek this guy with a birthday party than the Malaysian timber.


  14. disgusted
    Feb 23, 2010 @ 23:15:44

    Somebody mentioned that during a demo, he saw a placard which displayed, “Smart Bombs, Stupid Politicians.”

    Guess what? That correctly described most of the politicians in ruling power at the global level.

    If you think politicians are highly evolved, then you are in grave error. A spiritually evolved being will and can never be a politician.

    Hence, in highly evolved “human-like” planets and spiritual planes (dimensions), there is no government. Only a spiritual council (i.e. like a board of directors). And in the council, they are only advisers, not ruling politicians.

    Only on planet earth, we (earthlings) have time and again, chosen the “wrong” politicians to rule and mistake after mistake, election after election, chosen the lowly brained people as : leaders. Such a dirty word, “leader.”


  15. Dr Hsu
    Feb 24, 2010 @ 09:46:00

    dear readers,
    Have not been feeling well and down with a rather high fever past 3 days. So have not been posting much, working at half pace… Am recovering and probably will start writing again in a day or two.

    Been mortal, even a doctor can get sick and no one can escape the cycle of birth, disease, old age, and death. Only enloghtened souls can be above all these sufferings…


  16. A true Malaysian
    Feb 24, 2010 @ 12:23:00

    Dr. Hsu,

    Just curious. When a doctor falls sick, does that doctor seeks consultation with another fellow doctor? 😀

    How about in your case? I forgot, you can easily seek consultation from your wife and children. They are doctors too, hahahaha!!!!

    Yes, you are right, we are all mortals, no escape from the life cycle. Anyway, hope to see you fully recovered soon.


  17. klm
    Feb 24, 2010 @ 12:45:00

  18. clearwater
    Feb 24, 2010 @ 15:00:25

    Get well soon, doc. I hope you are not a difficult patient. Resting at home can be hazardous to a marriage if so. Someone I know came back after a 3 week stay in hospital still confined to a wheelchair but is about to drive his wife and children crazy with his endless criticisms and complaints. His way of expressing frustration.


  19. Dr Hsu
    Feb 24, 2010 @ 15:04:05

    My dear readers, thanks for your concern. We normally self medicate ourselves. But for our relatives, the unwritten rule is to refer to another doctor to treat, since in case of your dearest one. And in Hippocratic oath, we treat a colleague’s parents as if our own…

    Am recovering. will be a thorn again soon.


  20. disgusted
    Feb 24, 2010 @ 22:33:39

    Take care, Dr. And recover speedily.

    And many “leaders” miss your prickly pain.


  21. Meng
    Feb 25, 2010 @ 01:15:40

    “Am recovering. will be a thorn again soon.”” Are you sure.

    I thought some of your readers were thorns pricking you…just clowning.

    Get well soon Doc


  22. tonyboneka
    Feb 25, 2010 @ 10:32:58

    The crisis of national bankruptcy can be a historical opportunity for reform:

    When politician talking about reform, the question will be “Reform? Are you serious?” Does he have the guts to act against powerful gangs who benefit from status quo? Even Obama failed.


  23. Matthias
    Feb 25, 2010 @ 14:20:05

    Dr , I’m from Germany and work for a multinational company based in KL. I want to make few points to your reader here,
    1)Chineses are more likely to make callous remarks towards other races (including European)
    2)Many of them i know of deliberately trying hard to evade tax.
    3)Many rich Chineses talk about millions of ringgits businesses but refuse to pay $2 parking fee and highway toll.
    4)Local Chinese vendors offer to pay bribe to me, but at same time became vocal of corruption issues in the country.
    5)Malaysia is considered a useless nation to many of them, but NONE of them willing to migrate to China. They should at least grateful here in Malaysia.
    Doc, are you fall in the catagories above? look like it to me.


  24. Dr Hsu
    Feb 25, 2010 @ 22:11:01

    I do not fall into all the categories you mentioned. Just go back to the thousand over articles which i have written.
    1. I did not attack anyone or any race.I only criticise on issues, not person, race or religion.
    2. I never evade tax.
    3. I paid all my parking and tolls. IN fct, I have always been against double parking and always park in a proper car park.
    4. I never offer an bribes to anyone . ON New year day, when my son was caught with his third brake light off, t police officer who manned the road block called me with my son handphone and offer to help , and I told him just to issue a summon, since it was our mistake that we did not notice the third brake light is off. This is the most recent incident, and my son and 4 of his friends inside his car can testify to this. The incident happened on 1st January 2010 at the road block set up near Caltex station near Section 19, PJ. I can proudly say that I have not made a bribe to anyone, nor pay any protection money to any gansters that in the eighties were terrorising people in Pudu areas.

    5. WHy should I migrate to China when I am a Malaysian.

    It is easy for you to smear a person without going through all the writings and thoughts. I will let my readers who have followed this blog for a long time to judge..

    I am only asking for fairness and justice, since I beleive in a society which is fair and equal …If my society has not achieved that, it is up to us to fight for this, and not run away to oother country. I can send you a letter of offer of A$300,000 to work in a suburban clinic in AUstralia ( i can scan and send it to you) just a few years ago, and the amount is much more than I earned here, but I have rejected it. These are all facts and not just casual comments to smear a person’s character.

    I have always warned my readers and friends not to race profile any race or religion profile any religions. BUt your commnet is actually trying to race profile an entire ethnic group based on the behaviour of certain people that you might have come across. Not all Chinese Malaysians are like what you have mentioned, and many never owe taxes and be more than punctual in paying their taxes. Many also never cut Qs, never double park and so on.

    Please, do not race profile, and that is the rule of this blog stated at the side of the blog too.


  25. klm
    Feb 25, 2010 @ 22:45:49

    matthias. please go back to Germany. I have friends from Germany and they do not say things like what you did. you should be ashamed.


  26. disgusted
    Feb 26, 2010 @ 00:12:13

    I think it’s unfair to blanket the Chinese into all those “sins” or contradiction. Hitting all with one stick distorts the true picture.

    I am not being apologetic but it is more about characters of people regardless of race.

    On the other hand, I am sure in Germany, there are also contradictory on human behavior.

    I don’t see the logic of the argument.

    And the rationale that Chinese not going back to China is sheer illogical.

    When I was studying in Australia, I was call the “chink” by local Aussies and once I got a four-letter word, calling me a Jap. And many Europeans there complained about Australia but yet decided to stay put.

    When one dog bites and kill a man, does it mean all dogs bite to kill. Have some common sense.


  27. disgusted
    Feb 26, 2010 @ 01:37:49

    “None of them willing to migrate to China.”

    This is a presumptuous statement not of fact but the limited contacts you have in Malaysia.

    More than 300,000 have left this place for greener pastures over the years and I know of at least one family who had actually migrated to China cos his children are all there.

    So your, “none” (assumption) is merely guesswork and not a factual statement.

    Where is your basis when you are talking about “none.”


  28. Rhan
    Feb 26, 2010 @ 10:32:02


    I am a Malaysian working for a European multinational base in Malaysia. Some observation I would love to share with readers of this blog.

    1) European or Caucasian like to impose their values on others, even to the extent to conquer other’s country. There are not racist because what they did is ethnic cleansing in order to save time, that is why no point to made any callous remarks.

    2) Many of them engage consultant to evade tax in the name of tax planning, legally seem right but morally just a bunch of hypocrite looking for loophole of imperfect law in developing country. Have you heard about the Siemen case?

    3) Many rich European talk about billions of Euro business but continue to rob the third world country of millions. Btw, what is the trick not to pay parking and toll? Honestly I refuse to pay tax to any government that is corrupted but I can’t find a way, can share?

    4) There must be a reason why the local vendors offer to pay bribe, I suggest you to either report to MACC or improve your company compliance policy. Thief always offers something back to thief, no? The entire Malaysian is vocal towards corruption issues in our country, we wish not to be victimized by these disease any longer.

    5) No Malaysian sees Malaysia as useless, it is our Malaysian rights to criticize the wrongdoing of our government, this is merely part of the common human rights of citizens living under democracy system. Since you have little appreciation of your rights under democratic, my advice to you is please migrate to China, whereby no criticism of government is allowed. And I think most authoritarianism nation will welcome you. Bye.

    Lastly, please perform a DNA test to verify your Germanic gene, by reading your lack of depth and none sensible comment, you may miss acknowledge your race and nationality, my guess is probably you are a pariah working in McDonald kitchen thinking that touching a burger and fries every hour would make you a European.


  29. cilipadi
    Feb 26, 2010 @ 10:48:09

    I have said MORALITY is very important, politics inclusive. Many not agree with me but prefer to put morality into many levels.

    Actually, morality has only one level. Human is cunning to split level it so that certain immoral acts are still regarded as moral ……. like bribing the traffic police, evading taxes, refuse to pay parking and so on.

    MORALITY is the mother of honesty, principled, integrity, religiosity, accountability, responsible……. all the good values you can think of.

    What is the point of being religious but with low level of morality?

    morality makan cili, immorality rasa pedas


  30. cilipadi
    Feb 26, 2010 @ 19:39:51

    Matthias? German name? Can be Chinese name? Mathias of a very old horse?

    Once a high profile name somewhere.

    I forgot, Chinese are everywhere, can live in Germany, Malaysia, North Pole ….. horse ranch, pig farm, goat farm, Putrajaya, KL, Shanghai…..

    Matthias makan cili, Matthias rasa pedas


  31. Meng
    Feb 26, 2010 @ 20:59:50

    The way Matthias has written he sounded more like umno dogs. Working in a multi national company in malaysia..they have to be close to umno to get into their favour… master and doggie. Right Matthias, this is the attitude of expat in malaysia. How many payout and dinners held for your masters???


  32. disgusted
    Feb 26, 2010 @ 22:14:14

    Cilipadi, ya, yeah fully understood.

    Well, to me, religion has been distorted and rewrote by some to protect their own turf and also a means to control others.

    To me, “religion” is not perfect.

    Spirituality is. The difference between “religion” and “spirituality” is like comparing hell and heaven.

    Read or see: U Tube: The Pleiadian Mission by Randolph Winters Part 1 to …..???? (25)?

    Read how history of religions has been distorted and why.


  33. disgusted
    Feb 27, 2010 @ 00:42:54

    Dr, you raised an important aspect on the evolution of nations and you are correct.

    The Dutch and Portugese gone. Later centuries of nations freed from the crutches of colonialism and the growth and death of empires.

    British empire, the German and Japanese of world war two. The powerful Russians gone and American economic imperialism and now the growing economic powerhouse of China.

    Later centuries I guess will be the technological powerhouse of India and much much later Africa when Europe twinkling into the twilight zone when Muslim fundamentalists ruined that part of the planet.

    I also believe that women one day will rein supreme in many nations. Who cares, most of us in the 50s and 60s will probably “migrated” somewhere else into the outer space.


  34. disgusted
    Feb 27, 2010 @ 22:25:41

    Dr, you mentioned the year of the Tiger and the Chinese century.

    We all forgot one thing.

    The one per cent up in the cosmos. No matter how developed, how great………

    The great earthquake hit Chili 8.8 scale.

    And the year of the Tiger begins with a big bang. The Cap Goh Mei tomorrow and the celebration ends and the pain begins….


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