5 Magical Cows

Gold Plated Cow

During the period of the warring states in China, the ruler of Qin was almost at his wit’s end after repeated failures to come up with a workable plan to conquer the state of Shu (Sichuan) which was surrounded by mountains in almost every direction.

An advisor by the name of Zhang Yi came to his rescue. Zhang visited the ruler of Shu and presented him with a few gold nuggets, claiming that they were the stools purged by 5 magical cows. Zhang offered to present one of the cows to Shu as a token of friendship between their states.

The ruler of Shu got excited, but Zhang Yi informed him that the cow was as brittle as stone and a smooth road had to be built to ensure its safe transportation. The ruler of Shu immediately ordered the construction of the road.

Once the road was ready for the cow, Qin soldiers marched in and destroyed Shu, bringing it another step closer to unifying China.

The legendary 金牛道 is a tourist attraction today.

Beyond Read To Eat Meals

For the longest time, public schools in China have been providing lunch for students. Recently, school kitchens have been closed down. Food is now catered by commercially-run central kitchens. Since then, several incidents have occurred; including one in which a rat’s head was found in the catered food.

Not long after the video went viral on social media, experts jumped out to refute the claim and insisted that the alleged rat’s head was actually duck’s neck. Through coercion and enticement, the victim was also forced to admit that it was actually a duck’s neck.

From duck’s neck, school lunches have moved to the next level. What the students are having for lunch are now ready to eat meals like those sold at convenience stores and issued to soldiers in the field. Parents have complained. A few schools have relented when parents staged street protests, but for how long can parents keep the pressure on these well-connected businesses?

It’s difficult to trace all the stakeholders in the school catering business. Most of the publicly known ones care probably “white gloves” 白手套. It should also be noted that the meals served at “elite schools” that CCP cadres send their kids to, are culinary delights rafted by chefs.

In the following video, Chen Qiu Shi points out that the real problem does not lie in the ready to eat meals but in the acceptance and acquiescence of such inequality and all kinds of misinformation in a supposedly socialist state.

The folks who sell the meals to schools and the schools that indoctrinate the students all aim to let children of “plebeians” remain “plebeians”.

Justice Be Damned

You can read more about Nie Shu Bin’s 聂树斌 case here. Not mentioned is the hero who played a major role in Nie’s exoneration Zheng Cheng Yue 郑承玥. As recent as 12 years ago, I could still watch such investigative documentaries in China. That’s how Zheng could get interviews with the media. No TV station would dare to interview whistleblowers anymore. Even a police chief like Zheng Cheng Yue could get tortured and his family punished by familial association 连坐, a practice that goes back thousands of years.

Every time I see news like this, I can’t help feeling a deep sense of sorrow and indignation. Do courts in developed countries make mistakes? Of course they do, but when questioned or audited, glaring mistakes and cases of miscarried justice are exposed and amid public outrage, the perpetrators punished. Do we see that happening in China?

So why was Nie Shu Bin so hastily convicted and executed? Insider’s rumour had it that his blood type matched that of a certain leader waiting for a kidney donor. Meanwhile, people in China just servile and try to stay out of trouble, hoping and praying that they won’t end up like Nie Shu Bin.

Du Fu

The greatest Chinese poet Du Fu failed the imperial examinations. Was it because he was not good at writing essays? Or was the reason political? Did Du Fu lack the acumen to be a bureaucrat?

Sleeping For The Country

Prostitution can get both the customer and the prostitute imprisoned for up to 15 days. It has been used as an excuse for arbitrary arrests and detention of dissidents. I have noticed the same sort of spam on Twitter. Every time some dissident tweets something unflattering about the CCP, it gets spammed by “replies” advertising sex services or pornography to draw people away from the political issue. I have no idea whether those are “legitimate” sex services. They probably aren’t. Doesn’t matter. The credibility of the tweet is compromised.


Luckin Coffee is a Chinese coffeehouse chain selling not only coffee but other beverages like tea, juices as well as food. It appeared aggressively like another Alibaba, expanding at a rate of 6 outlets a day, threatening to dethrone Starbucks. Luckin Coffee went public on the Nasdaq stock exchange in May 2019, attracting huge investor interest.

Using the strategy of predatory pricing (perfectly legal in China), their sales outlets and sales figures quickly exceeded Starbucks’. Investors were ecstatic. However, in 2020, it was found that the company’s executives had inflated 2019 sales numbers by more than $300 million, causing a delisting of its stock in June 2020.

Did Luckin go bust? Well, no. Luckin’s story begins with Director 陆正耀 who ran 神州租车. Facing bankruptcy, Lu received a life-saving infusion of funds from Li Hui from Hua Ping Finance. His car rental company continued running on empty. Soon after that, Lu backed his crony Qian Zhi Ya in setting up Luckin Coffee. His aim was to let Qian build up the company, then feed his loss-making car rental business with hidden franchise fees. Franchise revenue earned by Luckin kept 神州租车 in business.

While many patriots cheered for Luckin Coffee, hoping that they would put Starbucks out of business, Lu and Qian never had the intention of running a legitimate bistro. After being exposed by Muddy Waters, Lu and Qian made COO 刘剑 the scapegoat. To get out of the limelight, Lu and Qian resigned, appointing another crony 郭谨一 as CEO. Guo is still the CEO today. Its shares are still trading.

It should be known that Lu, Qian and other shareholders at Luckin Coffee had upon IPO, made a stock pledge and “borrowed” from US financial institutions. A stock pledge is used when a party wants to use shares he owns as a collateral for a loan. Of course, Luckin’s shares were worth a lot when the money was borrowed but became practically worthless when the fraudulent practices came to light.

After Guo took over, Luckin Coffee miraculously survived. They have even come up with a new product – Mao Tai coffee, China’s answer to Irish coffee. Initial sales figures were very impressive.

China’s Human Trafficking Business In Southeast Asia

First video is an account from a male victim sold to an organisation in Myanmar. The second video is an account from a female victim from Taiwan sold to Cambodia. Many different types of illegal businesses and organisations form a closed loop in these countries. Most victims start off working in online scams. Victims are sold to another business when they are no longer useful. The final destination could be the operating table where organs are harvested.

Like they said, there are only things that you can’t imagine. There’s nothing that they can’t do. Having said that, some of the “successful” victims may end up as partners and recruit other victims.

Manchuria Today

Chen Qiu Shi was the first runner up winner in China’s public speaking competition. He was “disappeared” during Covid lockdown for posting videos of disturbing scenes at the hospitals. He is unable to say what happened to him then. His Chinese social media accounts have all been suspended. He is only able to post on YouTube. You will never get all this information from authorised Chinese tour guides.

Below is his vlog on a territory in NE China that was once Manchuria. He gives a very succinct account of the history and politics that led to the present situation. Casual tourists will only see the glitz and the glamour. How many of the mesmerised tourists realise that there are people who have paid up for their properties but never got the keys?

Chinese Nationalism & Sports

The Chinese referee in this soccer match was assaulted by one of the players. This happened in YouTuber Edgar Lu’s home country Australia.

The offender is also ethnic Chinese. This Chinese-sponsored team, called Dragon Warriors, was made up of only 2 Chinese players and 9 Afghan players. The other team comprised Italian players and it was supposed to be a “friendly match”. Not long after the start of the match, the referee noticed that the two teams were more interested in fighting than in playing soccer.

20 mins into the match, the referee called a time out and asked the captains of both teams whether they wanted to continue the game in a more orderly manner. The Italian captain assured the referee that he would ask his team members to behave. The Chinese captain from the other team did not give him a definite reply.

30 mins into the game, one of the players from the Chinese captain’s team started verbally abusing the supporters on the other side. The referee then decided to call an end to the game. A Chinese fan watching the game shouted at the referee, questioning if he was Chinese and calling him names for not supporting the Chinese team. The Chinese team’s captain even came up to him and threatened him.

Those who understand Chinese can watch what the rest of the video yourselves. These hooligans really disgust me.