Sunday, November 15, 2015


Small-scale terrorist attacks are basically unstoppable in a free society. The American Right's fantasy of arming everybody won't stop it, and neither will liberal wishful thinking. When you want a society in which anybody can go out on a Friday night to attend a concert, you take the risk of a gunman shooting the place up.

One way to curb these attacks is to be less of a free society. You'll have to pass through metal detectors and have your bags x-rayed before entering a public building. Your communications and person will be subject to search and surveillance. Borders will be tightened against refugees and smugglers alike. People who look like attackers will be segregated into walled neighborhoods. A bit like Israel, basically.

But nobody wants to attack the problem at the source: a region mentally stuck hundreds of years in the past, with no hope except the illusory paradise offered by religion and perverted by extremists. It will probably take a horrifying expensive invasion and occupation, followed by generations of education and social mobility, to lift the Middle East out of this misery. And this is a cost no one will bear, so we shall continue to fight the symptoms.

My heart aches for Paris, but the truth is that I will not avoid visiting the city of lights for this. I refuse to let terrorists turn our civilization into something less.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015


報載高雄市兩名 15 歲少女,日前無照雙載且未戴安全帽,為躲避警方攔查,造成後座陳姓少女傷重不治。巡佐施富國抱怨「警察,依法行政何錯之有?」




Thursday, August 27, 2015

So Cut the Crap

If staying the course with sanctions will make Iran stop building nuclear weapons, why did we have to invade Iraq to stop their "WMD program"? As usual, Republicans are making little sense in their stampede to oppose everything Obama.

The truth is, once you realize that neither the US nor Europe has any appetite for an invasion and prolonged occupation, then it's obvious that developing nuclear weapons is how you force us to negotiate. As much as the Republicans want to pretend, there is no option of continuing to wait for the sanctions to work. Why would the Iranian regime suicidally wait for the sanctions to work, when they can develop nuclear weapons and force us to come to the table? They're not stupid.

Did Obama extract the best possible deal for the US? It's impossible to know without fully understanding the positions of the Europeans, Russians, and other players. If the US needs to maintain the sanctions at any cost, allies and frenemies alike will sniff it out and each extract their pound of flesh. They're not stupid, either.

We're talking about a weapon that the US first built in 1945, and a Princeton physics student nearly designed by himself in 1976. Today, the only real way to stop a proper country from obtaining one is to convince them that they're better off without it, but you're not going to convince somebody with little to lose. Obama's strategy to delay Iran's attempts and to eventually bring them back into the fold of world order seems plausible on its face.

Unless you want to go to war and occupy Iran indefinitely.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015


History may prove President Obama to be right or wrong about Obamacare, Cuba, and Iran, but it's important to note his courage in not just kicking the can down the road. One thing those three have in common is that we've been doing the same thing for decades and it clearly hasn't worked, and Obama is the president who decided to do something different. The latter two are not sexy legacy projects that a second-term president would naturally be drawn to. They're messy, decades-long impasses that too many politicians were content with just propagating to look tough.

Obamacare is not the liberal utopia of free universal health care, and neither the Cuban nor Iranian deals provide the satisfaction of total victory. Could he have been smarter or tougher or more cunning and gotten better results? Perhaps. But students of history should also remember that shortly behind the euphoria of defeating communism came the rise of international terrorism, not to mention the humiliation of Russia probably brought about Putin. Compromise may turn out to be the better part of valor.

Saturday, June 27, 2015


Yesterday's SCOTUS ruling on gay marriage is a monumental and euphoric moment for many, but don't forget that four of the five justices in the majority opinion were appointed by Democrats Clinton/Obama, and all four in dissent were appointed by Republicans Reagan/Bush/Bush. This stuff matters.

Furthermore, Ginsburg is 82, Scalia is 79, Kennedy is 78, and Breyer is 76. The next president may well appoint three or four new members to the Court.

Millions of people may now be saved from bankruptcy if an expensive medical emergency should strike. Millions of people can now marry someone they love.


Friday, June 26, 2015






Thursday, June 25, 2015

Wake the Fuck Up

Republicans are full of shit.

They want to give more money to rich people because when rich people get money, they create jobs and hire poor people. They also want to stop giving money to poor people because that just makes them lazy and dependent on handouts.

Hey, maybe the trickle-down theory is nonsense, maybe it's not - I'm no economist - but these fucktards aren't even trying anymore. The estate tax is levied only on transfers above $5.4 million, so repealing this literally benefits only the rich. Now, some of these may go to entrepreneurial descendants who create jobs (yay!), but you would be a total fucking idiot to think that every single person who inherits more than $5.4 million would start a business and hire workers.

What about the farmers, they say. Descendants are forced to sell parts of their farm just to pay inheritance taxes! So write a bill that takes care of the farmers but doesn't exempt rich brats who do nothing. Make fucking sure that in two generations, rich brats turn into poor brats with no government aid. Instead, Republicans are writing bills to take away aid for people who are working minimum wage jobs, and giving money to people who would never work a day in their lives, because they hate hate hate laziness.

As for trickle down, the top 1% already control 42% of the country's wealth. Exactly how much more do they need to start creating some fucking jobs? Why aren't we already drowning in jobs? Why are Republicans instead worried about Mexicans sneaking over the border and stealing jobs?

Want to hear another hilarious loophole? After Steve Jobs passed away, I learned that his descendants who got stock would get to reset the cost basis of the stock to the value at his passing. This means that the capital gains they would pay taxes on is calculated from the sale price and the market value when Jobs died, not when he got the stock (perhaps years earlier at a much lower value). The government just cancelled the tax on the portion of gains incurred during his life. What the fuck for?

For that matter, why are capital gains taxed at a lower rate than labor? I literally just click buttons in E*Trade to buy and sell a few times a year, and if I get lucky, I have capital gains. Yet that income can be taxed at a lower rate than the dollars I make doing the hardest jobs in the world.

Wake the fuck up.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015







Saturday, January 3, 2015



台灣人口密度是每平方公里有 646 人,在超過一千萬人口的國家中高居全世界第二,問題是地不夠,根本就不是人少。