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They came because Democrats will let them stay May 31, 2014

Posted by hslu in Economics, Politics.
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Last year, the border patrol agency caught 154,453 illegal immigrants entering into the US.

They came here because they knew Obama, Pelosi and Reid will let them stay.

Just read the attached report.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/05/30/officials-under-fire-for-dumping-illegal-immigrants-in-us/

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Single payer insurance plan is coming May 31, 2014

Posted by hslu in Congress, Economics, Health Insurance, Obamacare, Politics.
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Answer this question whether you are for or against Obamacare:

‘Why would a company want to mess
with its employees’ health insurance
if the federal government can do it
through Obamacare?’

The answer is of course ‘no one.’

I have predicted that America will eventually evolve into a single payer health insurance system with the federal government determining who will get what treatment and medicine for an illness at what age.

By extension, the federal government through the death panel will decide who will be left for dead because it is not cost effective to keep certain people alive.

The only thing that surprised me was that I didn’t expect it will happen so fast. About 80 to 90% of the US companies, according to a study by S&P IQ, will stop offering employer sponsored health insurance policies to their employees in as few as 10 years. The 5-40-2015 article can be found on Fox News site.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/05/30/analysts-predict-most-employer-provided-insurance-will-disappear-as-obamacare/

The train has left the station and we all can expect VA-like treatments soon. Congress is exempted from Obamacare though. You and I are not.

Don’t get sick if you can! When you are sick, you may have to wait for a month before seeing a doctor.

$400 billion?No,it‘s ¥2.5 trillion 人民币 May 30, 2014

Posted by hslu in China, Cold War, Economics, Energy, Global Affair, Oil.
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Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russia President Vladimir Putin signed a 30-year natural gas deal on May 21, 2014 during the 4th annual CICA Summit (26 member nations) in Shanghai.

中俄签30年天然气购销合同 总价值4000亿美元

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/gazprom-china-russia-sign-30-year-gas-deal/2014/05/21/042442f0-e0cf-11e3-9442-54189bf1a809_story.html

The contract, the largest ever for Russia, stipulated that Russian gas company, Gazprom, will supply China National Petroleum Corp. with 38 billion cubic meters of gas annually for 30 years.

输油管道示意图

Source: http://news.sina.com.cn/c/2014-05-22/023030192168.shtml

It is valued at $400 billion according to western news media.

The contract is significant for both Russia and China economically and politically. Russia got a new market, in additional to Europe, for its vast natural gas resources. China secured a long-term supply of cleaner energy to replace its coal consumption. The contract has been negotiated for 10 years and Russia’s take over of Crimea and the subsequent US’s sanction definitely forced Putin’s hand. American’s action pushes China and Russia into economical alliance and the new world order of three kingdoms is in place.

A more significant but less reported development of this contract was that the natural gas will not be paid for in US dollars. It will be paid for by Renminbi instead. At current exchange rate, it will be worth ¥2.5 trillion 人民币。

Well, slowly but surely, the dominance of the US dollar in world trade is being chipped away one deal at a time.

The time will come when US dollar is no longer the world reserve currency and Americans better be prepared for the inevitable.

Great Harvest Bread Co., Warrenton VA May 25, 2014

Posted by hslu in Food, Restaurants, Travel.
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Stop by this small sandwich and bakery shop when you drive through Warrenton, Virginia. It is about 40 miles southwest of Washington, DC. Great Harvest is in the old town away from the major thoroughfare, US 29.

‘Would you like to try a piece of our bread? We have 。。。。。。today.’ This is what you’ll hear first when you approach the counter. Most if not all people do and you’ll get a whole slice with or without butter.

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This was in the bathroom. It should be out in the dining room.

We had Turkey and swiss, a cup of coffee and a glass of lemonade. We also got a jar of gelly made from ginger and blueberry.

Warrenton is a lovely small town with nicely maintained yards and neat houses. Downtown area is quiet and most shops were closed on a sunny Sunday afternoon.

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The restaurant we wanted to go first, Claire’s, was closed at 2 pm and we had to settle with a sandwich shop. At least, we weren’t disappounted.

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Claire's

You will find it enjoyable too. Friendly service and free slice of bread help too.

Sub Middle-Class May 23, 2014

Posted by hslu in Economics, jobs, Retirement.
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According to a report by Country Financial, 25% of Americans are not saving for retirement at all.

http://mob.cnbc.com/us_news/101701441

Well, some of them are paying down their student loans. Some of them think retirement is too far away to worry about it now. Some might be paying off their credit card debts because they think life is too short to delay gratification now.

But, these weren’t the major problems at all. The most disturbing finding by the report is that 46% of these people who saved $0 for their retirement said ‘they cannot do so on a middle-class income.’

They have slipped away from the middle-class and into what I called the ‘Sub Middle-Class.’ They have become the slaves of the middle-class dream in the United States. They are slaves of their houses. They are slaves of their cars. They are slaves of their credit cards. They are slaves of their flat TVs and vacations. Everyone around them is doing the middle-class thing and they have to do it too.

Unfortunately the jobs that have been creating middle class dreams in the US are now in China, India, Thailand, Australia, Brazil and Russia.

Money has flowed to greener pastures in foreign countries and many Americans are left behind the middle class gravy train. Their tickets have been invalidated by the structural problems of the US economy.

Well, at least they are the top tier of the low income class. They have become the sub middle-class in the United States.

The standard of living in the US is slowly slipping away.

But don’t worry, America still has many billionaires. Raise their income tax rate to 75%. Tax their wealth and make them give their money to soup kitchens instead of Harvard Endowment Funds. Make everyone

当街卖唱 May 23, 2014

Posted by hslu in China, Shanghai.
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当街卖唱招揽客人。上海南京路步行街。

当街卖唱招揽客人。上海南京路步行街。

我家对面的小餐馆 May 23, 2014

Posted by hslu in Chinese Food, Cooking, Restaurants, Shanghai, Travel.
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茶树菇炒笋丝。白饭不要钱。可以尽量吃。

茶树菇炒笋丝。白饭不要钱。可以尽量吃。

看起来不错。煸的功夫不错。可惜肉骨头比肉多。两个菜¥15人民币。

看起来不错。煸的功夫不错。可惜肉骨头比肉多。两个菜¥15人民币。

围炉夜话 May 23, 2014

Posted by hslu in China, Chinese Food, Cooking, Restaurants, Shanghai, Travel.
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It’s a restaurant, btw. We are not talking about getting around a fire and BS all night long.

The restaurant is famous for baked whole fish and they have several restaurants in Shanghai to proof its popularity. We went to the one on Huaihai Lu, 淮海路 in 浦西, 上海。

20140430_195158 20140430_211936

下酒的小菜。点了黑牌的石库门。味道都不错。花生米泡在甜酸的醋里吃我还是第一次。东西很精致。味道清淡。牛肉有嚼劲。切的极薄。

下酒的小菜。点了黑牌的石库门。味道都不错。花生米泡在甜酸的醋里吃我还是第一次。东西很精致。味道清淡。牛肉有嚼劲。切的极薄。

印度的薄饼煎的很好。这是我们的主食。

Silky 豆腐 with cream from New Zealand。

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印度的薄饼煎的很好。这是我们的主食。

Four choices of fish。We chose 江团鱼。又称“鮠鱼。我的老家湖北叫它“回鱼”。

Four choices of fish。We chose 江团鱼。又称“鮠鱼。我的老家湖北叫它“回鱼”。

We had one of the better seats in the restaurant overlooking 淮海路。

We had one of the better seats in the restaurant overlooking 淮海路。

There are seven ways to season the fish ranging from mild to fire。

 

 

Nicely decorated。Very busy。We had to wait for 35 minutes。There were six parties before us。

Nicely decorated。Very busy。We had to wait for 35 minutes。There were six parties before us。

Here it was:tender,mild  seasoning,a lot of fish meat,flavorful sauce。The only problem:the fish was too large for the two of us。

Here it was:tender,mild seasoning,a lot of fish meat,flavorful sauce。The only problem:the fish was too large for the two of us。The fish, about 3.2 斤 (about 3.5 pounds,) was ¥217. Total for the meal and the  wine was ¥357. No tax。 No tips。

 

 

上海浦东滴水湖 May 23, 2014

Posted by hslu in China, Shanghai, Travel.
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This is where Line 16 starts。Pretty far away from my house。It looks very new。It will take visitors to the new Shanghai Disney Resort too。It opens in 18  months。

This is where Line 16 starts。Pretty far away from my house。It looks very new。It will take visitors to the new Shanghai Disney Resort which is about 10 miles from my apartment。It opens in 18 months。

车子新。路途遥远。每站之间比较远。车子跑得比一般地铁快。人也不多。只有周末忙。

车子新。路途遥远。每站之间比较远。车子跑得比一般地铁快。人也不多。只有周末忙。

20140430_144505 20140430_152705

2002 (left) 2003 (right)

2002 (left)
2003 (right)

 

2004 (left) 2005 (right)

2004 (left)
2005 (right)

2006 (left)  2008 (righ)

2006 (left) 2008 (righ)

2010 (left)  2011 (right)

2010 (left) 2011 (right)

Just about the only place to eat was this place next to the lake. It offered dumplings (hand made on site,) tea-flavored boiled eggs,packaged instant noodles and chips. Beer was warm but the young female owner was warm and very friendly. A fruit stand outside the store had fresh strawberries from the neighboring Anhui province.

Just about the only place to eat was this place next to the lake. It offered dumplings (hand made on site,) tea-flavored boiled eggs,packaged instant noodles and chips. Beer was warm but the young female owner was warm and very friendly. A fruit stand outside the store had fresh strawberries from the neighboring Anhui province.

Inside of the small pub/restaurant.

Inside of the small pub/restaurant.

Another mural on the wall. Provocative.

Another mural on the wall. Provocative.

Our lunch. The owner told me that weekends were much busier.

Our lunch. The owner told me that weekends were much busier.

The diameter of the lake is 2.66 KM. Total are is 5.6 sq KM with 5 sq km water surface. Average water depth is about 3.7 meter and the deepest point is 6.2 meter.

The diameter of the lake is 2.66 KM. Total are is 5.6 sq KM with 5 sq km water surface. Average water depth is about 3.7 meter and the deepest point is 6.2 meter.

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I knew we didn’t have time to walk around the lake. Besides, it was a very long walk. But we could rent bicycles if my wife knew how.

The place was about to close when we got there.

Tour boats are available too: ¥45 per person for a 8-minute ride。Four wheel bike was ¥40 per hour。Sounds reasonable。

Took about 45 - 50  minutes from 罗山站 to here。

Took about 45 – 50
minutes from 罗山站 to here。

滴水湖 location

过干瘾。Other people told us that it wasn't easy and very tiring。

过干瘾。Other people told us that it wasn’t easy and very tiring。

滴水湖 location

滴水湖 location

滴水湖 location

Too bad, my wife doesn’t know how to bike May 22, 2014

Posted by hslu in Shanghai, Taipei, Travel.
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Too bad, she doesn't know how to ride a bicycle. This bicycle station is getting popular near our apartment in Shanghai. I might teach her how to ride one. She kept telling me that she'll buy a tri-cycle instead.  She is probably the only person who doesn't know how to ride a bike growing up in in Taiwan. Taipei has many stations like this too.

Too bad, she doesn’t know how to ride a bicycle. This bicycle station is getting popular near our apartment in Shanghai. I might teach her how to ride one. She kept telling me that she’ll buy a tri-cycle instead. She is probably the only person who doesn’t know how to ride a bike growing up in Taiwan. Taipei has many stations like this too.

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