Tag Archives: China

Current Event Cat of the Day: Bitcoin Tanks

Current Event Cat - Bitcoin Sinks

Bitcoin holders everywhere are scrambling to find their local suicide hotline number – and not just because the Christmas season is here and they are alone yet again, but because the price of Bitcoin has tanked.

The price of Bitcoin has plummeted by 50 percent since late November after China ordered third-party payment agencies to stop any “custody, trading and other services” related to the virtual currency.

The Chinese crackdown on domestic Bitcoin trading sent the price of the virtual currency on a downwards spiral. But don’t say the Chinese didn’t warn you: the Chinese central bank cautioned bitcoiners earlier this month that Bitcoins don’t have any legal status or monetary equivalent and shouldn’t be used as currency. The Chinese were very worried that the cyber currency, which is created, distributed and authenticated independently of any bank or government, could pose a viable alternative to China’s tightly controlled yuan.

And so the biggest Bitcoin exchange in China announced on Wednesday, just two weeks after China’s central bank said the country’s banks and payments systems were barred from handling the virtual currency, that “due to the reasons that everyone knows, BTC China has to temporarily stop its yuan account recharging functions.”

For those bitcoiners who lost out, just remember that the first rule of investment is to never invest money you can’t afford to lose. And the second rule of investment is to steer clear of Bitcoin no matter what those sneaky Winklevoss twins tell you.


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Dangerous Levels of Smog Makes China More Humorous

Shanghai Smog Prob

China’s pollution problem (or smog prob) is getting so bad that the Chinese are fleeing to the moon to get away from it.

Those who can’t flee to the moon, can still rely on eccentric millionaire Chen Guangbiao, to solve their smog probs. Guangbiao is selling cans of fresh air collected and compressed from the outer regions of China. The cans cost 80 cents and can be inhaled or slowly sipped. Either Guangbiao is obsessed with the movie Spaceballs or he’s trying to highlight the dangerous conditions of air pollution in the country – by producing thousands of aluminum cans.

The hazardous levels of smog paint a gloomy picture for the future of China but if you look really closely through the smog, you can see the faint outline of a silver lining. China’s national broadcaster has identified six benefits of the country’s smog problem:

1)   It has made people more united, because smog is a common enemy everywhere in China.

2)   It has made people more equal, because both the rich and the poor have to inhale the same polluted air.

3)   It has made the Chinese more clear-headed as to the price that the nation has to pay for becoming the “world’s factory.”

4)   It has made the Chinese more humorous. Sarcasm abounds when it comes to the topic of smog, and “that sense of humor is the source of strength for defeating the smog.”

5)   It has made the Chinese more knowledgeable, as people become educated on concepts like PM 2.5, important historical events like the London Great Smog of 1952, and even English words like “haze” and “smog.”

6)   It may be beneficial for military defense. “If smog has enveloped the target, [a cruise missile battle] may fail as it cannot discover or identify the target. Of course, this is a good thing for the defense side. During the Kosovo war, the Yugoslav army tried to avoid NATO bombing by artificially creating smog through burning scrap tires.”

Yes, ignore all environmental regulations, because humour is all China needs to defeat the smog. Problem solved, next crisis please.

Via: Forbes

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China Goes to the Moon, Takes a Few Pictures

China Moon Jade Rabbit

They’re about a decade (or five) too late, but China’s first moon rover, the Jade Rabbit, has made it to the moon.

The successful mission marks the world’s first soft landing of a space probe on the moon in nearly four decades. The 140-kilogram “Jade Rabbit” rover separated from the much larger landing vehicle early Sunday, after the unmanned Chang’e 3 space probe touched down on the moon.

China’s Jade Rabbit rover, named after the pet of Chang’e, the goddess of the moon in Chinese mythology, sent back its first pictures from the moon on Sunday. The cameras produced some clear images – mainly of the lander and the rover taking pictures of each other.

Although China lags a fair bit behind the United States and Russia in terms of technology and experience, their space program is an enormous source of pride for the country.

The successful mission reflects “the new glory of China to scale the peaks in world science and technology areas,” China’s space agency, the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence (SASTIND) said in a statement, adding it was committed to exploring and using space “for peaceful purposes.”

The landing marks a major step forward in Beijing’s ambitious military-run space program, making China the third country to carry out a lunar soft landing. Future plans include a permanent orbiting station by 2020 and eventually sending a human to the moon. But the immediate next step is to rip out the American flag and plant their own, sparking an increase in NASA funding which will lead to another space race.

But space race aside, I guess it makes sense that China is so eager to explore the moon. After all, it’s easier to breathe on the moon than in Shanghai.

Via: AFP

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Chinese Man Jumps To His Death To Avoid Christmas Shopping With His Girlfriend

Shopping Death

In a shopping mall in in Xuzhou, east China, Tao Hsiao, 38, shopped til he dropped – seven stories down.

After shopping for nearly five hours at the mall, Tao decided enough was enough and demanded to go home. His girlfriend, however, wanted to keep shopping for shoes. Cue giant public fight.

According to an eye witness, “He told her she already had enough shoes, more shoes that she could wear in a 
lifetime and it was pointless buying any more.”

“She started shouting at him accusing him of being a skinflint and of spoiling Christmas, it was a really heated argument.”

The fight ended when Tao decided he would literally rather die than take one more second of Christmas shopping with his girlfriend. So he dropped the bags he was carrying for her and jumped over the balcony to his death. His flailing body smashed into some Christmas decorations during the seven-story plunge, but luckily no other shoppers were hit.

Tao was killed on impact and emergency services quickly removed his body. As for his shopaholic girlfriend, hopefully she picked up some funeral outfits during the five-hour spree, because now she doesn’t have anyone to carry around her bags for her.

Via: The Daily Mail

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Polite But Stupid iPhone Thief Sends Owner Handwritten Numbers

iPhone Thief

A pickpocket in China painstakingly wrote out 11 pages of telephone numbers from a stolen iPhone and sent them back to the victim.

The thief, who has apparently never heard of icloud, and the victim, who has apparently never heard of my iPhone, were sharing a taxi together in the central province of Hunan in China when the robbery occurred. The victim, Zou Bin, had nearly 1,000 contact numbers in the device and was so concerned about losing the data that he began sending his phone threatening text messages.

“I know you are the man who sat beside me. I can assure you that I will find you,” he said in a text message to the thief.

“Look through the contact numbers in my mobile and you will know what trade I am in.”

“Send me back the phone to the address below if you are sensible.”

The thief must have mistaken Zou Bin for Liam Neeson’s character in Taken (and Taken 2!), because the threats scared him enough to write out (not type out) a thousand names and numbers and send them to the iPhone’s true owner. At that point it might have just been easier to give the whole phone back. But maybe he was concerned about the postage cost?

Zou said he was ‘astonished’ when he received a package containing containing his SIM card and 11 pages of handwritten contacts days later. Noticeably absent, however, was were hand drawn replicas of all Zou’s iPhone photos. Slacker.

“I suppose (the thief’s) hand is swelling,” Zou said.

But despite Zou Bin’s loss of iPhone, he may have inspired the plot for Taken 3:

First they took his daughter.

Then they took his wife.

Now…they take his iPhone!

Via: Metro

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True Love is Over: Courtney and Doug Split! And Other News…

Courtney Stodden and Doug

It’s true – Courtney Stodden and her husband/legal guardian Doug Hutchison have announced their divorce!

If a 16-year-old child bride with triple F boobs and a creepy 50-something-year-old pedophile who made a few movie appearances can’t make it, no one can!! The teen bride, now 19, and her husband of two years have officially confirmed that they are ‘legally separated’ and will soon divorce. According to her rep, Courtney is “interested in exploring life as an unmarried single young adult – with the freedom to explore her independence.” Translation: she wants to slut it up – Z-list style. But before you try to wipe away your sorrows by chugging ten bottles of vodka and re-watching “Don’t Put it On Me Girl”, Courtney wants everyone to know that Doug will remain her best friend “for life” as well as the co-manager of her career. They will also share custody of their dog, Dourtney. As for Doug, he can now try his luck with Courtney’s long lost sister Courtina or her troubled half-sister Courtland. Hollywood Life

NJ-Mall-Shooting-gunmanWhile it wasn’t as dramatic on the Kenyan mall siege, the New Jersey mall shooting did have a happier ending. Richard Shoop, the man suspected of opening fire at a New Jersey mall Monday night, was found dead early Tuesday from what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The 20 year-old fired off six founds in the Westfield Garden State Plaza Mall prompting an immediate mall lockdown. No one (aside from Shoop) was reported injured. The motive for Shoop’s suicide mission? It appears he was addicted to MDMA – so who knows. ABC News

china-cat-sterilizedSave the cats! A massive cat rescue mission is underway in eastern China after hundreds of cats were taken from a cat dealer and released into a mountainous region. A truck carrying 1,000 cats (presumably to be eaten) was stopped at a highway toll gate. After officials determined the track lacked proper permits, they ordered the cats to be released into the wild. Animal-loving volunteers are now combing the area trying to locate the wandering cats and return them to their owners. CBC News

07-11-2012drcsoldiersPeace in the Congo! Just kidding – but it is a step in the right direction. The M23 rebel group in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo announced that their 20-month rebellion is over, hours after the government claimed military victory. The rebels were cornered in in the hills along the border with Uganda and Rwanda, gave up, and said they would adopt “purely political means” to achieve their goals from now on. But don’t get your hopes of yet – there are still some 20 armed groups operating in Congo’s lawless state. BBC News

Russian TeenGoing once, going twice, sold to the creepy Russian gentleman for $27,950! A 18-year-old Russian girl has sold her virginity in an online auction for the noblest of causes: she wants money. The 18-year-old, known only by her nickname of Shatuniha, wrote that she is “in urgent need of money, so I am selling the most precious thing I possess.” A man named Evgeniy Volnev will do the honors after bidding almost $28k. The two will seal the deal at a hotel in Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk. NY Daily News

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9/11 Is A Sound Bite That Resonates With The NSA… And Other News

9/11 defense NSA

If there’s one thing Americans can thank the terrorists who crashed into the Twin Towers for, it’s the use of the word 9/11.

9/11 is the best defense ever! Why did you invade Iraq? 9/11. Why did you pass the Patriot Act? 9/11. Why are you torturing those prisoners? 9/11. Why is defense spending 250% of our GDP? 9/11. Why did Dick Cheney shoot an old man in the face? 9/11. And now it’s being used as a defense for NSA surveillance. According to a memo obtained by Al Jazeera America, the NSA instructed its officials to shout “9/11!!!” whenever they had to justify their love of spying. Under the subheading “Sound Bites That Resonate,” the memo suggests using the following phrase to justify their eavesdropping: “I much prefer to be here today explaining these programs, than explaining another 9/11 event that we were not able to prevent.” Pretty good – but they can probably simplify it a bit by saying “9/11.” Al Jazeera

Square CrashThe Tiananmen Square car crash has been ruled a “premeditated, violent, terrorist attack”. Five people were arrested following an investigation into Tuesday’s attack in which an SUV drove into a crowd near the entrance of the Forbidden City. The car burst into flames and five people were killed – but three were suicide terrorists so that’s okay. The driver of the car, an ethnic Uighur named Usman Hasan, was accompanied by his wife and mother-in-law. Wait a minute… this doesn’t sound like a terrorist attack… this sounds like a convenient way to get rid of your mother-in-law. But police believe the attack was carefully planned and they found knives, iron rods, gasoline and a flag imprinted with religious slogans inside the burnt SUV. Ok, now it sounds more like a terrorist attack. CBC News

Evil ClownThis post brought to you by your worst nightmare: a child-abusing clown. A Milwaukee man, dressed as a clown, drunkenly held a child over a railroad overpass. After returning home from a Halloween party at 1a.m., Antonio Brown, asked his girlfriend’s two children, aged 13 and 8, to go on a walk with him. Lesson #1: never accept an invite from a drunken clown. Then Brown the Clown forced them to drink and dragged them into the woods. When they tried to escape, Brown picked up the older child and hung him by his feet over the railroad overpass while yelling, “If you do that again, I’m going to drop you.” Lesson #2: never try to escape from a drunken clown. Luckily a passerby saw the children crying, called the cops, and Brown was arrested and charged with two counts of physical abuse of a child and two counts of second-degree recklessly endangering safety. Gawker

WIneThis can’t be good… According to a report from Morgan Stanley Research, the world faces a global wine shortage. Consumer demand is already exceeding supply by 300 million cases a year. There are 1 million wine producers globally, making 2.8 billion cases each year – but that’s not enough. We need more wine! And who’s to blame for the global wine shortage? The Chinese! Wine is becoming increasingly more popular in China as their economy continues to grow. So next time you’re out binge drinking and you can’t seem to find enough wine, punch an Asian. And a European too, because apparently Europe’s wine production dropped 10% in 2012. CNN

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Current Event Cat of the Day: Car Crash in the Forbidden City

Current Event Cat - Forbidden City

A sport-utility vehicle tried to enter Beijing’s Forbidden City the old fashioned way – by smashing into its entrance.

On Monday afternoon, a crazed car crashed directly into the main entrance of the Forbidden City. The vehicle quickly became engulfed in flames and all three people inside the car were killed. At least two tourists also got caught in the crash and dozens more were injured after the car slammed into Tiananmen Square.

The gate, at the south end of the Forbidden City, is the symbolic center of political power in China, adorned with a huge protrait of Mao Zedong. Since the gate and the adjoining Tiananmen Square have known to host a few political protests in the past, investigators are trying to figure out whether the episode was an accident or a deliberate attack. 

On the one hand, setting yourself on fire in Tiananmen Square is a popular Chinese pastime – it happened in 2011 when a man set himself on fire following a legal dispute and also two years before that when three people set themselves on fire in a car at a busy intersection near Tiananmen Square. In fact, they keep fire extinguishers handy for these types of occurrences. But on the other hand, the Chinese aren’t’ exactly known for their superb driving skills…

Whatever the reason, China is trying to be hush hush about the whole thing. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying, would not comment on the case at all. So China’s official story, as always, is: Nothing bad ever happens at Tiananmen Square. Not today, and especially not on June 4, 1989.

Via: BBC News & Current Event Cats

Chinese Couple Trades Baby for iPhone… And Other News

iPhone Baby

A Chinese couple is in trouble for selling their baby for $8,000 to go on an online shopping spree.

The unemployed couple began posting online ads for their unborn child in earlier this year. After giving birth at home, the couple handed over the baby girl in exchange for a large cash payment. While the couple claims they did it for the baby’s own good, their credit card statements say they did it for luxury goods. One bill shows that immediately after “trading” the baby girl, they made a large number of online purchases, including an iPhone and a pair of “high-end” running shoes. What morons – if they had just waited 5 years they could have had their own iPhone/shoe making machine! What a waste of free child labour. The Telegraph

Goblin ROcksLooks like the Chinese aren’t the only ones to destroy ancient artifacts. A group of Boy Scout leaders may face felony charges for destroying a rock formation millions of years old in Utah. While out in Goblin Valley State Park, the trio of men decided to film themelves knocking over one of the ancient rock formations and high fiving each other when the job was complete. Utah State Park officials were not impressed. It took millions of years for the rocks to form like that… and only 20 seconds for some fat rednecks to destroy it. What’s worse if that they went against one of the most sacred of Boy Scout traditions: leave no trace. I mean, they should have at least destroyed the video that traced them to the crime scene. The Salt Lake Tribune

Oops Prison MistakeHow to escape from jail if you’re too lazy to dig your way out: fake release papers! Two convicted murderers walked out of Florida prisons in late September and early October after they forged their own release papers. Police are now on the hunt for the two men, convicted for separate murders in 1998 and 1999. The state Department of Corrections isn’t about to take the blame for it though. They insist they were merely following a court order and that no one in the department is at fault for the men’s release. Maybe they were just following orders, but if both men were serving life sentences without the possibility of parole, wouldn’t it seem weird that they were both being released so early? CNN

Roma ProtestFrance is continuing its war on the Roma by deporting two teenage girls. A 15-year-old Kosovar girl was forcibly taken from a bus during a school field trip and was deported back to Kosovo with her family. Another 19-year-old Armenian student was also sent packing after authorities deemed her an illegal immigrant. French students took to the streets of Paris on Friday to protest the government deportations but France’s the interior minister is sticking to his “France is not here to welcome the Roma” message. Al Jazeera

Daisy ColemanAfter two year, Daisy Coleman, an alleged rape victim, is having her case reopened. The county prosecutor who initially dropped the felony charges against the two 17-year-old boys—accused of sexually assaulting then-14-year-old Coleman and a 13-year-old friend – said that he’s reopening the case. Coleman is happy the case is being reopened and recently wrote a blog post describing the ridicule and depression she’s endured. But Fox News guest and criminal defense attorney Joseph DiBenedetto thinks she may have had it coming: “What did she expect to happen at 1 a.m. in the morning after sneaking out?” he asked. “I’m not saying she deserved to be raped, but knowing the facts as we do here including what the prosecutor has set forth, this case is going nowhere and it’s going nowhere quick.” When you start out saying, “I’m not saying she deserved to be raped…”, you probably deserve to be raped. Raw Story

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North Korea Totally Needs a Luxury Ski Resort… And Other News

North Korea luxury ski resort

Forget the crippling poverty, the widespread media censorship and the rampant human rights abuses – North Korea needs a luxury ski resort!

The question is, who in North Korea can afford to go to a luxury ski resort? Kim Jong-un and… well just Kim Jong-un I guess. Maybe he built it so he won’t be tempted to go to Japanese Disneyland and pull a Kim Jong-nam (Kim Jong-un’s infamous half brother who ruined his chances as North Korea’s leader by sneaking into the amusement park). Or perhaps the multimillion-dollar ski resort was built to stick it to South Korea who is hosting the 2018 Winter Olympics. Regardless of the reason, the project suffered a few set-backs (aside from the fact that only 0.02 percent of the population know how to ski) – Switzerland, Austria and France have all refused to sell ski lifts to North Korea because of ongoing sanctions on the sale of luxury goods to the communist state. North Korea called the refusal to sell ski lifts a “serious human rights abuse.” Huh. Washington Post

Dilma RousseffWho’s Brazil accusing of spying on them now? Canada! Brazil’s foreign affairs minister summoned Canada’s ambassador to the country (which is apparently a big diplomatic deal) to discuss Brazil’s spying allegations. Apparently Canada used phone and email metadata to map the communications of Brazil’s Mines and Energy Ministry. Nothing angers Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff more than spying. Rousseff called the alleged surveillance a clear case of industrial espionage. Your response Canada? No comment. CBC News

Smog SportsAthletes are always afraid they’re going to choke, but when they’re playing in China they are literally going to choke – ON SMOG! International athletes at the LPGA golf event and the China Open tennis championship in Beijing have been seen sporting surgical-style face masks – and not just to blend in with the locals. Pollution levels have gone from China’s normal hazardous to super hazardous, prompting athletes to complain about the air quality calling it “a disaster” and “a joke.” CNN

Jeans in IranOk Iran, we get it – you like pants. After Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave an interview saying, “I think if the Iranian people had freedom, they would wear jeans, listen to western music, and have free elections.” Iranians have been quick to prove him wrong – by showing off their pants. Iranians began tweeting pictures of themselves wearing blue jeans and mocking Netanyahu and his backwards impression of Iran. The jeans fiasco took away from Netanyahu’s message that Iran was a wolf in sheep’s clothing and is trying to pull the wool over the United States’ eyes regarding its nuke program. But if he can’t even see their jeans, how can he see their nuclear weapons? The Guardian

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