Revisiting quotes of ChinaSuperpower after some time in China

I’ve been busy busy busy quite exhausted but weekend gives me a chance to wind down a bit. So I went over the VPN to read again some quotes of ChinaSuperpower on Reddit.

I’m from a technical background but unlike many especially from the Chinese diaspora STEM community in US, I’m not exactly entirely apolitical and I do not try to pretend that national and racial boundaries can be traversed unlike many an idiotic Western or Westernized liberal. Segregation per race is natural for humans and miscegenation, hybrid vigor notwithstanding, I see as for the most part quite corrosive if not socially and culturally destructive. As the Chinese saying goes, 人以群分物以类聚. I was and still is a quantitative nerd and used to hang out with mostly those types naturally but many of them are just 书呆子 with pretty low political awareness and then again naturally I don’t want to be exposed too much towards that aspect of them. Like, I will respect a high IQ banana for his technically prowess but I will not disdain him somewhat socially and treat him with some degree of suspicion.

On the other hand, ChinaSuperpower is a lawyer as he was written on Reddit. He doesn’t care all that much about pure technical ability and puts the political side before the professional side. He doesn’t want to hear more about cases of highly successful Chinese STEM diaspora and he has a very high standard when it comes to ethnic/tribal affiliation. Being a lawyer he’s obviously had to deal with much more cutthroat behavior than people in technical field. A political big fish in the latter is merely average in the former so the standard is very different.

I’ll say that with direct exposure and experience I can better understand where he’s coming from with his words.

Like he wrote

You are thinking like a diaspora, mate. Race only matters when you have the same citizenship. In Asia, where different ethnicities have different citizenships, the only thing that matters is your citizenship.

So a Chinese national will naturally discriminate against nationals of other countries that are unfriendly to China. A Chinese American will be categorized as “American” and disliked. Now a white American may be disliked as well but a native Chinese will expect the white guy to have some status within America, so he gets respect. They know a Chinese American has no status either so they will dislike the Chinese American for his citizenship and look down on him for his lack of status.

Again, this is the shitty situation created by the huge wave of white worshipping emigration from 1980 to 2015. They exploit their children as “anchors” in the adopted country for the parents’ convenience and then cut off their children’s escape route back to the homeland.

In China, without citizenship there is too much one cannot do. One cannot buy train tickets online and one can only live in hotels for foreigners that are overpriced. China is not an immigrant nation like America, China does not even pretend that non-Chinese can become Chinese, unlike America with its melting pot bullshit. A non Chinese without citizenship can only work on the fringes of mainstream society in foreign-based organizations there. Really it’s similar for Chinese in America even those with US citizenship. They tend to be in academia and tech companies full of immigrants or in Chinese restaurants. They have no place in the media or in the legal sector or in mainstream finance or politics. Their kids are subject to higher standards in college admissions because their career prospects are social influence are limited in America.

On this I shall quote a comment on Reddit.

This is somewhat true. Many are just as blind as they were when they first arrived to the US. Many stay here, buy into the story and never want to acknowledge the problems that exist in the West (US) and how this affects them and their communities.

I think the problem is the clustering of immigrants which gives them a sense of false reality. Back home in Vancouver, the majority of Asians tend to stay within their own communities. These communities live in their own bubble, but are also deeply affected by westernization in all aspects.

They get fooled that they maintain their own social dynamic and that things are good, but essentially the same rot occurs due to the way society works in the West. I have seen Chinese folks talk all proud about being Chinese and doing some superficial Chinese things, but besides these few things, they have become almost fully westernized and they would difficulty move away from this.

The reason why the diversity meme is spread is precisely because it helps spread westernization among the immigrant population. They want Asians, but they want a specific type of Asians to be represented. They want people that LOOK Asian and do some superficially Asian things, but they essentially want these people to behave in the exact same way and have the exact same political/social positions as the mainstream whites.

Given it is a slow process, most people don’t realize it. It is like the frog in the boiling water.

To this ChinaSuperpower responded with

Your post hit the nail on the head. Never underestimate the resolve and solidarity of the mainstream society in excluding Asians from real corridors of power. Instead, they cleverly peddle a superficial Asian (or Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Filipino, etc.) community to numb the first generation emigrants into thinking they are in control.

Actually, the first generation emigrants are in control of nothing. The government remains in control of the mainstream. The police remains in control of the mainstream. The banks and big businesses remain in control of the mainstream. The unions remain in control of the mainstream. The media remain in control of the mainstream.

But you let the first generation emigrants gather together in some Asian mega church or whatever and they feel as if they are “at home.” The moment they realize they are not at home is when they change from consumers to producers.

When they have to actually make a living they realize there are no jobs. When they try to open a business their property rights are not protected. When they wonder what is going on by then it is too late: their sons have wasted years and years getting an education without real job prospects. Their daughters have spent years and years watching white savior Hollywood movies.

If these Asian enclaves never formed and all these Asian families were scattered in redneck hick towns maybe they would have figured things out much faster and retreated back to the homeland. The Asian enclaves serve to paralyze the first generation emigrants while the Western toxin works its way into the bodies of the second generation sons and daughters to change their lives forever for the worse.

I having grown up there and worked there am aware of all this. I much disliked it obviously and did what I could to keep that toxin out of my system. Nonetheless I still feel at times a little PTSD from that experience. But once well settled in China what happens in America will largely be irrelevant to me, I will have basically little reason to care. I hardly even go on English media now and as an example I never even cared to read any English media articles on the recent Huawei detainment incident aside from the one on Unz Review by Unz himself. Unz Review is out of the mainstream though. There are many Russians on there and I encourage them as hard as it may be to go home instead of being an unwelcome contrarian in America. Social position and belonging means much more than the extra money and material standard of living you’re getting in America.

Even a guy with top credentials with even stronger anti Western liberalism views than I do superficially speaking I laugh at at times to myself as merely a “Chinese nationalist wannabe banana” as his Chinese is very limited and he basically acts American in terms of many of his natural habits. I do think he can be redeemable though but with a lot of work. I encourage second generation Chinese in America with a desire to become a true Chinese to contact me and I’ll do what I can to help. At the very least I can supply some connections on 微信. It’s a very small base population though so you are probably used to your social and psychological needs not really being catered to growing up. Having gone through that experience I definitely will help in my spare time. I am aware that those who grew up in America by default would regard returning as basically not an option and I am happily challenging that default with my own writings and more importantly actual actions. I encourage more Chinese to actively challenge existing norms in ways advantageous to both the individual and the group whenever one is capable of doing so.

My blog does not get that much readership (certainly less than Steve Hsu’s) but it’s also far from negligible. People have contacted me and I have become good friends with at least one. I’m glad to have influenced some people. Those who like my blog are of course very welcome to share it. In the reverse direction, I’ll say that my contacting a Chinese in China blogger I stumbled upon through Baidu search helped me with my return to China which while not that difficult due to my relatively privileged circumstances was not exactly easy either. At the very least it brought me some connections and made me feel less alone. So maybe I can do the same for others.

I want to say to my readers that though this blog might in many ways reek of elitism, there’s no reason to feel intimidated or embarrassed. I’m actually a pretty chill person for the most part. I don’t think I am all that great either. I want my blog to provide some valuable information and encouragement to my readers and hopefully meet some interesting and helpful people through it as well. I want to write honestly too, about how the world really works socially based on my personal experience in school and in the real world, across both the Chinese and American cultures. I’ll be honest to say that in that regard I do have quite a rare combination, though that has more to do with my rather unusual background than with any terribly exceptional ability or talent, though certainly, I’m also far from a dimwit.

At the same time, I want to write more clearly and simply about my experience learning various technical topics in math and computer science and provide some suggestions on how to go about understanding them, though surely, the audience for that is smaller than for the political matters I write about. I don’t think it’s very good to try to make this stuff seem super difficult and perhaps more complex than it needs to be. I realize that many expositions present just the formality and don’t say anything about the motivation or intuition, with the appropriate analogies or context.

It’s also not my intention to show off or name drop or status signal. I have been guilty of doing that before, just as I’ve been guilty of intellectual intimidation, and all that I find increasingly tasteless. I must say that Steve Hsu’s is full of that, and it threw me off quite a bit when I first encountered it (when I was about to graduate from high school I believe). He hasn’t really changed. Not that he isn’t extremely talented and impressive, but every once in a while, he will write about how hard theoretical physics is, his contacts/connections with theoretical physicists and also mathematicians (recently Noam Elkies), and alongside that random blog posts about his sporting prowess, and also geopolitics (mostly in the form of links to videos) and then advertise these random Chinese (to clarify, mostly Chinese-Americans, not real Chinese) people and Chinese companies, and then go on about how they’re discriminated against in college admissions in a white country (with the whole controlling for all other variables, being Asian means less likely to be admitted argument that most people don’t really want to listen to). Also, his cognitive genomics and AI and Silicon Valley startup experience among other things. It’s mostly in the form of advertisement, often with links and just brief commentary, with at times some elitism in the form of name dropping and personal associations. Clearly, our formats differ greatly, with my posts being longer and in more essay format, with some actual elaborations on my thoughts and reflections coupled with some personal experiences.

I’m getting a bit tired of Steve Hsu’s blog by the way, but I certainly acknowledge the impact it’s had. It’s a pretty successful blog with many commenters, unlike mine, which has very few comments. This I’m sure also at least subconsciously has to do with the fact that I don’t really consider Steve Hsu a real Chinese, especially now that I am in China, he’s not at all culturally Chinese as far as I can tell. So as much as he advocates for China and Chinese, especially in America, it’s hard to take him that seriously in this different context. Of course, this is all a product of his having been born and raised in America. I was raised in America since first grade too, but I have more actual exposure and connection to the real China and real Chinese such that I still can be one of them.

微信转发给我的文章“美国是天堂吗?一个资产过亿中国人移民美国6年后的自白!“

是一位中国理论物理学家转发给我的,他在美国也做过交流。读了此文,我基本完全认同他的说法,尤其是美国意识形态教育可怕的那一点。

原链接:https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/8BUWdQYJ1sSsc2wf0TjLLg

下面将此复制,图片和广告就不包括了。

I’ll further comment that having been in it from first grade through university the American school environment seems very effective at culturally cleansing those of Chinese descent as was done to that person’s kid despite his having done up to sixth grade in China. It is indeed 非常可怕, and again I did what I could resist the cleansing.

Seeing his shock on how just 2 or 3 years of brainwash in America managed to override a preceding 12 years of it in China, evidence of futility of Chinese education, I have a few thoughts on the matter. One, his kid is somewhat on the extreme end there; of course it didn’t help that he was put in schools full of rich white kids. Two, this has become a problem in China too, an invasion of toxic American liberal ideology. Banning Google and Facebook, and now also Reddit and Quora, is not enough. On how to solve this, I have a proposal, a rather unrealistic one at this point in time: change the de facto foreign language in China from English to Russian, China already had experience with that in the 50s and time has showed that Russian culture is more compatible with Chinese culture than the Anglo one. If China is going to secede from the world by walling off Jewish controlled Anglo media, it should do so full force, not half-heartedly.

美国是天堂吗?一个资产过亿中国人移民美国6年后的自白!

占豪 了不起我的国 Yesterday
文|  炎之物

本文经授权转载自微信公众号:占豪(ID:zhanhao668),不代表本平台观点。

2018年5月,一亲戚想办投资移民,火急火燎地找了一所美国律师事务所。同时,希望找熟悉的人问问投资移民应该注意什么,多久能拿到美国绿卡,什么样的美国律所可靠,会不会被骗,风险多大等。正好一位好朋友6年前办过美国的投资移民,所以找到他咨询。

他1960年底生人,上世纪80年代末上海一名校毕业后进入银行系统,90年代末开始自己创业,移居纽约前,他在山东工作生活,主要做投资,积攒了不少财富。据他自己讲,移民那会,他手头现金上亿。

我们一聊近2个小时。在了解情况后,他坚决反对计划移民者(女,国内名校毕业后到美国读完硕士,父母均为四五线城市的相对高收入者)移民,认为美国远非想象的那么美好,“不要把孩子往火坑里推”。

他说,在中国,6万—10万元人民币的家庭收入,生活要比美国中产阶级幸福的多,向上流动的概率也高得多,普通中国人移民美国,将遭遇难以想象的文化、生活、工作等方面的隔阂和难题,移民三四代后可能会好一些,但那时,后辈与你移民的初衷已大相径庭,Ta不再属于你、你的家庭、家族和中国。

以下是与对方对话的大致情况,为方便阅读,保留第一人称,小题为整理者所加。

01

传言中的美国与

真实生活的美国相差迥异

没来美国前,我和大多数中国公共知识分子一样,对国内很多方面持批评态度,对美国则崇拜的不得了,觉得那是人类目前最自由最美好的生活,有最合理的社会制度,实际上,美国也确是我自己的梦想之一,对于80年代的大学生,美国诱惑太大,工作后多次到美国出差,更是觉得那是一个伟大的国度。

这些年看美国电影和美剧也多,其中展示的普通美国人多住在别墅洋房里,进一步强化了美国无限美好的印象。但在美国待了近7年后,我才知道,我们原来看的都是表面,当你真正在美国生活、深入了解美国后,发现我们那会教科书提及的西方资本主义的腐朽堕落,全都是真的。

我是在孩子小学毕业后办的移民,此后主要时间和精力都和孩子在美国生活。

接触了美国各个阶层,对美国社会有进一步了解后,我发现,在美国的多数华人打拼后过上中产阶级的生活并不难,毕竟移民到美国的,多是国内的知识和财富精英,但美国中产的生活并不像想象的那么好。

美国中产收入按可比价格计算,差不多如同我所在的山东家庭年收入6万至8万元人民币这个水平。一个年薪10万美元的中产算收入高的,在扣除联邦税、州税、FICA等杂项后,到手的不会超过7万美元,合每月6000美元左右,除去交401k等各类保险、社保,到手能用的也就2000—3000美元。

这个收入决定了他们的孩子基本上享受不到太好的教育,因为美国最好的学校多是私立教育,一个月上万美金很正常,普通中产家庭几乎不可能承受。教育等方面的投入差距决定了他们一般固定在相应的阶层。

我生活在山东二线城市,年收入5万—10万元的家庭很多,按现有的购买力,这个收入保障孩子上好点的学校多数是没有问题的,而且大部分上升渠道也是打开的。美国貌似什么都是开放的,但你根本够不着。

他这个制度设计的一个优势就是,你够不着还让你把责任都归咎于自己,从而保持着整个社会的相对稳定。当然,它的美元体系让美国人能享受到全世界的廉价资源和产品,使得即便是普通中产,衣食住行等基本生活保障也都是不错的。

但另一方面,美国的穷人比例比中国更高,贫民窟很多,处境比中国更难,政府救济其实少的可怜。

和美国相比,中国现在的穷人算幸福的,听老家人说现在农村贫困户经常有各级政府去关心,还提供就业机会,这确实是中国特色,在西方国家这是不可思议的,资本的贪婪和冷酷也不允许它这么做,当然,不包括慈善。

在美国,大约0.5%左右的顶级精英,像比尔盖茨、库克、扎格伯克等;5%—10%的普通精英,70%左右的中产阶层,其他都属于生活较艰难人群。

02

要想进入美国主流

精英群体非常非常难

很多进入美国的中国人认为,只要自己努力,一定能在美国混出个模样来。其实,在美国成功的华人极为有限,即便三四代移民后,相对于大量移居美国的高素质华人,能进到美国精英阶层的少之又少,他们中99%都成了美国芸芸众生中的一员,美国的阶层固化非常严重,你几乎没有能力冲破。

而且,无论你如何优秀,你会发现美国白人社会很难接受黄种的亚裔,尤其是华裔,很多优秀的中国人甚至在印度裔的管理和欺压下。

按财富计,我应该属于美国顶级阶层的那个人群,我的的房子在美国最富有的几个顶级精英旁边,我英语也还不错,在美国六年多,我进了不少圈子,认识了很多精英人群,但我能深深地感受到他们和你的那种距离感,你融入不进去,这与你努力与否无关,他们根本不接受你作为一个中国人的努力。

03

移民二代会很快以自己是一个美国人自豪,并试图抹去自己身上的移民痕迹。但假以时日,他发现并不能融入美国白人主流社会,进而产生巨大的挫败感。

我有自己的经济基础,就希望孩子在美国有最好的教育,他也享受到了美国顶级精英所受的教育。同时,我们也兼顾国内的全才式培养。

6年下来,花在孩子身上的钱近2000万元人民币,孩子很快因为自己是一个美国人自豪,因成绩出众且爱好广泛,包括美国精英社交中涉足的一些体育项目,孩子也在一对一顶级教练的教授下出类拔萃,这给他带来了自信。

但到十一、十二年级(即中国的高二高三),他发现自己很孤单,因为原来非常好的那些白人同学或朋友开始疏远他,而他又渴望融入。

与此同时,孩子又带给我无尽的痛苦,我们的矛盾冲突越来越大,让我深感无力。

我小孩在山东读完小学六年级来的美国,应该说,基本价值观已经成型了,但在美国待了两三年后,他全盘接受了美国文化,竟然开始看不起自己的父母,认为我们骨子里有反人类普世价值的根子,这让我异常吃惊,也异常沮丧。

我们一些思想也许与美国基督教和商业文化有冲突,但不应该被自己的孩子视为异教徒,我们奉行中国最正统的价值理念,仁义礼智信、温良恭俭让一直都是我们对孩子的要求,也是我们恪守的信条和做人底线,怎么就成了反人类了?!中国倡导的核心价值我认为与西方的所谓普世价值并没有本质冲突。

自此,我感受到美国文化和美国社会远不是媒体宣扬的那样,它骨子里视自己为现代文明的灯塔,对异域文明具有极端的排他性和狭隘性。同时,感受到美国意识形态教育的可怕。

我们在家都普及中国文化,讲中文,但孩子在美国待了两三年后却否认自己的祖国,认为自己国家的历史充斥着谎言,背离了真实,这让我觉得尤其不可思议。都说我们的意识形态教育多严,“洗脑”教育如何厉害,可我们洗了孩子12年的脑,却经不起美国三两年的历史观教育,可见我们的教育要不是无效的,要不就是形同虚设。

孩子现在基本把中国的一切都丢掉了,并引以为耻,也许等他更年长一些会唤醒中国文化基因,但目前看,他全盘接受了美国价值观和美国光荣史。

美国短短200多年的历史,弄得好像全球文明史都是他的一样。我原来以为我的孩子极端,过分迷恋美国文化,是个案,后来接触不少华裔,发现具有一定的普遍性,国内要深刻反思并检讨我们的史观教育。

从我的经历看,孩子是在高二下学期开始经常抱怨同学对他的歧视。他上的是贵族精英学校,参加的各类课外班级也都是顶级俱乐部孩子,所以代表了美国精英阶层对他的排斥,尽管他的学习举止非常好,但无济于事,他无法得到需要的认同。

此前在初中和这些同学关系都非常好,逐渐成人后孩子们组建起自己的圈子。要知道,在异国他乡没有圈子,没有认同感,对一个人的心理冲击会非常大,小孩之后又把这些情绪发泄到我们头上。

我小孩已经拿到美国几所顶级名校的录取通知了,但我已经意识到他不会被美国精英社会接受。我现在想的是,如果我在国内花同样的钱,用同样的精力,孩子的优秀应该不会亚于他今天取得的成绩,但已经无可挽回。

我决定今年春节后回山东生活,一些人认为我年岁大了想落叶归根,其实不是,我是看到了美国社会的病态,它完全不是我从中国公知、媒体和各类社交媒体中获知的美国。

中国有污染的空气,但中国有更多美国没有的机会和相对宽容的环境,美国所谓的上流社会,你几乎是挤不进去的。但不在美国亲身生活,你不会有这种感受。

中国人死要面子,在美国的很多苦痛是不说的,这让人觉得美国很光鲜,加上回国带点美国的coach、levis等品牌包和衣服等回去,让大家觉得国内几千的东西在美国竟然如此便宜,美国简直就是天堂,其实根本不是。

我认识一对夫妇:男的清华本硕毕业后到美国师从诺贝尔奖得主,现博士毕业在纽约一高校,科研经费很少,生活拮据。他爱人是自己的高中同学,在北大本硕博后F2签证到美国,至今在美近10年,期间因为生了2个小孩,成为全职太太。

这对夫妻的原生家庭在国内有些关系,前些年家人让回去,他们认为应该混个样子出来再回,这两年想回,却因年近40岁顾虑重重,感觉优势不明显了,也担心国内人际关系复杂,就这么耗着。

我去过他们居住的地方,还属于美国的底层,孩子每月还需要政府给点救济,他们的目标应该就是进入中产行列。

他们夫妇俩很努力,但下一代的未来其实已经注定,因为他们的未来是看得见的,其经济境况决定了他们的孩子不可能接受美国的精英教育,这就意味着下一代已经输了,但他们享受着来自中国老家的虚荣,老家都以他们在美国为傲,而他们回国展示的都是在美国光彩的部分,其实这和他们的真实生活反差很大。

如果在国内,清华北大毕业的他们如此努力上进,会比在美国好的多,成就可能也会大得多,从这个意义上,我们培养的大量优秀人才被美国这个巨大的社会绞肉机吞噬了,非常可惜,我们应该有机制来盘活这批人才。

现在大家都在说中国各种不好,又把美国描绘的天堂似的,其实现实不是这样。美国的阶层固化非常严重,相对而言,国内的机会和上升渠道要畅通的多,尽管我们有很多问题,有很多不满,但与美国相比,我们依然有不少好的地方,也有可能是因为出过国的更爱国吧,我现在的观念有了很大变化。

04

接受了美国文化和价值后,觉得做个普通公民就很好,那这个移民意义就不大了,对华人是个精神和思想上的挑战,更是无尽的苦痛。

儒家文化鼓励进取,有通过自己努力做人上人的基因,从来不认命,希望一代比一代强,而在美国华裔移民又很难成为“人上人”,所以会很痛苦。

美国文化觉得当个清洁工也挺好,都是社会不可或缺的,但中国人会认为,我要在国内付出这么多,一定能出人投地。美国的天花板你顶不破,亚裔能出头的非常少,你会不甘心,尤其是第一、第二代移民,不甘心“泯与众人”,中国人的基因很难接受这样的结果。

如果你想过一般人的生活,那你可以去,但我们骨子里希望成人上人,这是黄种人的基因密码。此外,我认为美国中产阶级过得并不轻松,但因为他信奉上帝,内心平静,能坦然接受并享受其中,我们要做到不容易。

中国本地人如何看待美国长大的华人

ArmorUSA老是跟我说我在中国由于我在美国长大会受到一些歧视和排斥,比我想象的会严重得多。但是,他个人还是有经历的,在北京工作过。有人知乎上私信给我,表示对我的支持,我就向ArmorUSA说

我可以跟他说你觉得ABC在中国很不受欢迎吗,即使是会中文的,爱国的,【某美国最顶尖大学】有高等学位的。

他的回应却是

The last point is irrelevant. What matters is 会中文 and 爱国的.

我心想,哇,真的,中国人把红竟然看得那么重啊,比专还重的那么多啊。

ChinaSuperpower倒觉得我在中国不会被排斥,由于我还有中国身份证,加上父亲一直在中国,并且来自比较红的家庭背景。

这种不管你在美国多么有资历,多么名校背景,若是黄皮肤华裔而中文不好或不爱国,中国人不把你当回事儿这一点,其实我也有过,尽管自己当时还没真正想到回国发展。比如,大学毕业后认识了一位普林斯顿毕业的四岁去美国的人,本来以为他专业能力会多么不得了,但却大大失望。加上这个人的中文极差并还觉得自己中文已经足够好了,对世界和政治的思维方式也是完全美国化的,一下子我就觉得这个人是个tm的sb。

同段时间,有一次我又和一位我小时候通过父母朋友认识的一个当时在读医学院的人网上聊天。记得小时候觉得他牛的不得了,被哈弗,耶鲁,斯坦福大学录取了,又是SAT满分,那些中国父母都觉得他棒的不得了。当然,后来我也SAT接近满分,数学和编程竞赛也得过奖,也工作挣钱了,就没有把他那么当神看了。我们谈起了某五岁从乌克兰来到美国的人,我说这个人还知道好多中国历史人物,比如吴三桂,钱学森等,让我感到相当的impressed。那个人却说了中国历史他只知道近代的。然后,我就说了个那钱学森你应该知道。他说不。我就简单的介绍了钱学森是什么人及他的人生和贡献,然后说了个什么像钱学森邓稼先都是中国核武器和导弹最重要的并且在中国公众名气比较他的科学家,应该知道。他还为此感到很惹恼,在那平台上禁了我几周。我怎么觉得呢,一开始感到有点失望,是不是自己与人交往能力有点问题了。同时,我也觉得他这个人虽然事业上好,但是比较缺乏政治判断能力。美国学医的人在很多人眼中都是一些不太聪明不太独立思考但能死拼命的人,为了进美国医学院付出很大的代价,包括大学和医学院昂贵学费的贷款债,好将来做医生相当高的工资慢慢换回来,之后在自己晚年享受高的工资并且稳定工作。有的人进不了医学院或者医学院读了却发现自己做不下去,此经济压力甚大,每年都有医学院学生自杀。我个人从来没有对当医生有过兴趣,同时,我也觉得扛着那么多债为了将来不完全保证的更好的未来不是一个明智的选择,就像一些中国父母在美国为了自己的孩子能上学费高的好学校,还把自己的房子卖掉,这在我眼中也是很愚蠢的做法。同样也是那些为了能进好的大学故意显得不那么Asian,据我观察他们或许能进哈弗耶鲁等,但是之后他们的结果一般并不好。

所以看来我自己虽然在美国长大也一直骨子里从某种角度把香蕉化的华裔非人化,跟中国的中国人做得也差不多。我骨子里还跟那些主动移民美国的人是不一样的,不过还是由于母亲的决定小时候去了美国。ChinaSuperpower说我这样的人即使没有香蕉化也不会太被同情,这我能理解,这就像一个人主动跳进了蛇坑后受害了才认识到蛇危险,逃避了还指望正常的觉醒的人同情他,在这种情况下一般人的反应会是活该。当然,ChinaSuperpower说第二代身不由己去的好多其实是无辜的,可惜的是,某程度依父母什么样,包括父母的人生决定,评价一个人属于人的本性,若自己与父母道不同,那就得积极的证明此不同才能得以别人的认可。

Role models for Chinese who grow up in America

Now that I am older with some time out of that shitty American education system, I can better appreciate how racist and emotionally destructive it is at its core for Chinese. Of course, I sort of knew all along that the “Asian” portrayals and stereotypes within the US school system and media bears little resemblance to the real one based in China. I mostly did what I could to ignore that and learn the real Chinese culture instead. For that, much thanks to Baidu and CCTV.

And yes, I had been at least subconsciously aware of the problem of lack of good role models. Speaking of which, I just read this comment on Reddit which left me quite an impression. The author of it, though having written that he was actually born in the US (I wasn’t), clearly knows the Chinese language and culture well, if you look at his writings on Reddit. As for the specific comment, I have it copied below.

There are plenty of Asian role models if the younger generation would actually try to look.

My personal, first and foremost has to be Mao Zedong, simply because of his bravery and not giving in to pressure, especially by XMs if you think about it: Krushcev, FDR, Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, etc etc.

He led the Red Army during the Long March, 6000 miles on foot, always having to worry about assassination, and when they did win the Civil War, what happens? The United States tried to get him during the Korean War, and well, we know what happened after that, pitting 2 superpowers against each other and coming out on top, with lots and lots of pressure. Also the Chinese nuclear weapons was under Mao’s watch, which is the benchmark of calling yourself a superpower.

And no, to those Asian parents who decided to come here, air conditioners and toilets is NOT the the benchmark of being a superpower, nuclear weapons are, supercomputers are, missiles are.

Funny thing is, Mao died in his 80s, with all the pressure and stress he had endured. New generation Asian emigrants come here and I’ve noticed die much earlier than the previous generation. What gives? Could it be that your abundance of food is not so good? The convenience of air conditioners, heaters and toilets made you all weaklings? Something to consider.

For intellectuals, the father of China’s nukes and missiles have to be Qian Xuesen along with all the other great Chinese scientists under Qian’s watch.

Let’s not forget all the musicians that composed those beautiful war/red songs, still written to this very day. There is just too many to name, but they should all be enshrined to be the world’s greatest artists, along with Cultural Revolution painters. The paintings are amazing.

Yang Hongji is a famous singer in China, his baritone voice is amazing, you all should have a listen, Baidu it, 杨洪基

For athletes, I do like world record holders, so definitely Lu Xiaojun and Liao Hui, along with olympic swimmer Sun Yang. Also, we have to put in Bruce Lee as well, <— finally an ABC lol, yay! I like Jeremy Lin too, he’s way better than he actually is until the Houston Rockets basically fired him because the general manager was a supreme jack ass.

So, if Asians really look close enough there is plenty of role models around, don’t look at just Americanized Asians.

Now if you made it this far reading my walls of text, lmao, how many at r/aa actually know this about history, the Chinese Asians that is? Not many I reckon. Which is why I always say, deletion of history from your brain can be detrimental to your mental health. But at the same time we still have very proud Asians even with a lack of knowledge of history. Why is that? Maybe because there is so much evidence right now that we are just better. I honestly have no idea what is going in the brains of Asians from those other subs whom we shall not name lmao.

I pretty much have felt the same as he had, aside from my not having heard of Yang Hongji and Lü Xiaojun, who are pretty minor on that list anyway. But in place of the former, I know of plenty of such Chinese cultural singers, and the latter is as far as I can tell still more or less obscure, his weightlifting world record notwithstanding.

I especially liked his

And no, to those Asian parents who decided to come here, air conditioners and toilets is NOT the the benchmark of being a superpower, nuclear weapons are, supercomputers are, missiles are.

This has been quite obvious to me all along. Economic power is not the same as standard of living as experienced directly by the common folk. People who conflate the two tend to be those mentally sick right wing liberal Chinese who I want nothing to do with. Of course, not that material standard of living doesn’t matter, it certainly does, and in that regard, China has naturally improved very rapidly the past several decades once it had its industrial and military foundation.

Another comment of his I found particularly funny,

I never knew America is actually not that strong at weightlifting, and I wasn’t able to easily confirm it through online searches. I’ll take his word on that though, and also, that Russians are really good at weightlifting is exactly what I would expect.

I do remember seeing that the World’s Strongest Man contest had an Icelandic and Lithuanian, and more generally Nordics and East Europeans, at the top. There was though an American named Brian Shaw. I told this to my racially self-hating Chinese male nerd friend with reference to the word “white,” and to my great surprise, his response was actually

Lol that’s because only white people could care about such a ridiculous contest.

By the way, I don’t find that contest ridiculous; I find it quite respectable.

Back to Chinese role models, I first learned about Qian Xuesen spring of sophomore year of high school through Wikipedia and I developed somewhat of a fascination with him. I think very few Chinese who grow up in America know about him despite his being a household name in China, simply because America is not going to advertise him. I saw that Iris Chang, famous for her book on the Rape of Nanking also wrote a biography for him in English. Sadly, Iris Chang committed suicide in her 30s out of mental illness. She was also a WMAF, and yes, I’m well aware now of the phenomenon of Asian female married to white male as Asian-American community activist, in particular how much of a joke that is.

I’ll conclude by saying that I’m not some frenzied Chinese ethnic chauvinist. I genuinely admire much of Western civilization, the science part of it especially, though I’m also aware it is much in contradiction with my heritage, not to mention that mainstream American culture and politics right now is basically completely degenerate. Again, my message to Chinese in America is to be less complicit with it. In other words, quoting that guy again,

We need to channel Genghis, do not integrate into the land you are in right now, but channel your own inner Ghenghis. We need to forget this acceptance garbage. When Ghenghis went into Iran, did he beg for integration into Iranian society? No. he went out there and just took it. This attitude is what we need.

我对于种族关系的看法

最近在美国,正在进行的对常春藤大学歧视亚裔的种族配额制度的案子在2018年6月中旬透露了哈弗录取人员给亚裔申请生更低的所谓的“个性评分”,以此为拒绝他们之由。可预料,这引起了一场稍同情亚裔的媒体大波,而7月出头没过多久,川普政府撤销了奥巴马时期推行的大学录取种族平衡政策并颁布了新政策指南的重要举措。同时,亚裔又在纽约市强烈抵抗市长de Blasio提出的将撤销特殊高中考试录取的案,为了种族多元化而改至holistic的录取方式,难以接受在现有制度,那些特殊高中的名额大约百分之七十都占于亚裔学生。加上,芝加哥大学,一所SAT分数分布很高的接近顶尖大学,已经把SAT考试改为可选而非必要的申请件。看来随着亚裔体抗议常春藤的歧视加热而稍有进展的同时,美国的某些其它教育机构又开始给以新的袭击。看来美国社会就是对亚裔不要好啊。为此,我当然也有自己的想法。

对于一位为所谓亚裔孩子平等教育权的活动者所提出的,我是这么说的:

没错,但是我现在不断觉得华裔在美国所争取的社会地位的提升很可能大多会是枉然的,因为美国当权派不愿意太多华人进入美国上层。是,在美国的华人必要敢于为自己的利益抗争,但要现实,不要把太多时间和精力浪费于几乎不可能成功而对自己毫无长远价值的事情上。现在美国优秀的华人太多,已经难以容纳,要移民最好找找别的地方,或者留在中国为增强我们自己主导的体系而奋斗,把它转成有国际竞争力的一流体系。在美国,华人只是会帮着造福望永远把华人以世界二等人对待的美国当权派。

总之而言,这些人我觉得在忽略一个更根本的问题,就是为什么华裔在美国得不到平等。为什么呢,美国还是白人统治的白人大多数国家就不用说了,就是在世界,作为种族,白人的社会地位还是远远更高的,由于白人在前好几百年所积累的,此难以摆脱。没错,东亚人很聪明,又勤奋,智商高一点,这一点在心理统计学界里是几乎绝对认可的,毫无异议的,但是问题是权利和资源掌握在白人手里,这一点白人的精英和统治者是不会轻易放弃的,反而东亚人好,还更有原因被歧视。白人不太在乎黑裔或墨西哥裔,他们不构成任何威胁,而且给予这些被压迫民族一点名额和资源不仅能缓解一些殖民奴役所造成的所有的白人內疚感,还便以表出一点虚伪的慈善,不用说,把资源从主要对手转移至弱者是非常典型常用的增强巩固自己地位的手段。

同一个人,非男性,还发布关于亚裔男性爱受到的歧视的信息,对此,我只能说:

可惜的是,说不定亚裔男性的性(这包括身材,面容,外表)吸引力就是差一些,或者他们由于属于更弱的种族被视为缺乏社会地位。没什么好办法,只能进步自己和做你所能做的进步你所属于的不可脱离的种族。抱怨只会让你显得更加屌丝(loser)。

我在美国长大,但显然与ABC很不一样,还是一直坚持了对自己文化的认同,因为大多ABC所做的真的挺愚蠢的。我一直认识到正宗中国人的势力比在美国被边缘化的ABC的势力要大得多,对种族关系和歧视还是比较现实主义的,可惜像我这样的人实在太少。现在的中国人过于想如何多融入美国白人所主导的社会和体系而非如何把自己主导的体系变得更有国际竞争力,无论如何,华裔在美国只能采取二流的附属的地位,中国人的主力应该放在中国。

中国人不要忘记日本的经历。他们从明治天皇的领导起现代化做得非常成功,不断像世界证明了东方人在现代科技和军事还是有竞争力的,但是最终还是得不到平等的对待,不得不对西方列强发动战争,在此过程中将其它东方人和亚洲人为奴隶和牺牲品,最终由于自己太小而过于扩张还是失败了,最终不得不永远放弃原有的军事大国梦想。虽然日本输了,但是还是打赢了好几场具有先进军事技术水平的战争,也得到了一定的认可,而战后,他们的飞速经济重建和崛起又让西方人刮目相看,把美国的好多科技产品打的落花流水。我还是非常佩服日本人为民族而不服输的精神,他们很多方面比中国人的确素质高,像日本的精英从来没有过永久留在外国乘凉的现象,大多都最终回去为他们的祖国贡献,同时,也很少出日奸,在这一点现在的中国人可以感到羞耻。相比之下,中国人的奴性和民族自卑感要严重得多,若没有毛泽东和抗美援朝的胜利只会远远更差,当然比印度人要强得多了。说起印度人,你看中国人62年把印度打的那么惨,魂飞魄散,现在还要在美国公司受印度人欺负,多么丢人啊。在这一点我的确对当代的中国人感到很失望。说的极端一点,中国人去买美国的那套扯淡,不如勾结俄罗斯人想法把美国打垮。你想想当年斯大林和毛带领的那样的团队是没人敢惹的,斯大林的间谍那么可怕连美国都要搞类似于文革的麦卡锡主义反共浪潮来镇压,把钱学森那样的顶级华人人才也吸引回国了,中国人现在已经失去了这种精神,这是很遗憾的。

现在的中国人经常盲目的崇洋媚外没有什么骨气,经常接近于教条的将与美国体系多近为衡量人的标准,非常的缺乏民族自尊心。台湾人和香港人对大陆人有优越感,因为他们经济更富裕,更西化,没有意识到他们自进入美国的怀抱下都是殖民经济,以附属地位和产品换取了他们的经济和生活水平,而在此过程中,增强了他们的阿Q心态,变得像印度人那样了。的确是,他们和印度人一样少数精英享受了美国的教育和体系,自己发展的很好,但是他们绝对不能算得上真正代表中国人,当然中国人也都为他们的精彩成果感到自豪。一个国家的人才大多在国外只能说明这个国家的国际政治影响力比较微弱。说到这一点,由于领导,毛泽东时代的中国很多方面国际政治影响力比现在远远更富裕的中国都要强,为这一点,现在中国人也应当感到羞耻。

中国人也应该有一定的优越感。虽然自己没有搞出近代科学和工业,落后挨打了,但这不一定说明中国人本质上就是劣势的,可能在身材上某些方面劣势一些,但是这也是次要的。相反,中国那么落后糟糕但为何,类似于日本人,只不过起步晚的多,追赶却那么快呀?不是因为更高的智商和更加刻苦耐劳吗?而这一点,不也通过在美国的优秀刻苦但受歧视的华裔学生加以证实吗?而且中国人还做到了日本人未能的,就是与西方白人打平一仗而建立自己独立的体系和制度吗?中国人在外国还被白人欺负,没办法,这个问题必须靠自己以中国为主的势力来解决,对手还是瞧不起你,不会轻易认输的,只会更加给你施加压力。最终还要看中国人自己的能力了,不是那些为美国机构服务的中国人,而是为中国自己服务的中国人。任务是艰难的。我作为中国人敢直截了当这么说因为我知道无论如何,我不可脱开中国人的面貌,就像俄罗斯人无论和西方多么亲,依然无法脱开共匪的面貌,还是被彻底毁坏了,中国人即是共匪,又是黄种人,就更没有希望了。可惜太少人认识到这一点。反而,汉奸还是特别多,像我说的,中国的整体素质还比日本人要差,我想如果中国不敢为此严厉处置,在内加在外,中国人的希望是不大的,连港台的人心都拉不过来,谈何与白人平等啊。有些人如果品德实在太差而无救,也不要放弃劳改,绝育,甚至灭九族的手段,不用一切向美国学习,美国现在反人类的SJWneocon势力日益增强,无可遏制(消灭就更不用说了),将来它们都可能把美国整个国家搞坏,损失已经很大了,中国人不要一样傻就行了。

Harvard’s discrimination against Asian-Americans

It was revealed last week or so that Harvard systematically rates Asian-Americans lower on personality, on subjective traits such as “positive personality,” likability, courage, kindness and being “widely respected.” I’m not surprised at all by this. Though they could have at least been a bit smarter about this by keeping this shit off the record. Now the investigators could actually reveal something about their process to the public that would undermine the institution’s credibility.

Though I am an Asian-American, I will not try to pretend. It’s so far for Harvard’s institutional interests more or less rational to do what they’re doing. Asian-Americans have very little power and influence over the institution. Sure, there is no shortage of prominent Asian-Americans professors at Harvard, mostly in STEM, but they don’t actually have all that much influence over the institution, and are mostly being used by the institution to advance its own academic reputation. The same goes for being an Asian academic undergrad admit (who can, say, win a high place for Harvard at the Putnam Contest). There is also the implicit assumption that because Asians face race-related disadvantages in the career game, especially in the corporate world, due to unconscious bias, lack of ethnic affinity networks, etc, they should be penalized, as future career success, of a form not perceived as too threatening to the current elite, is crudely what admissions is optimizing for. So, life is not fair, get used to it, and do the little that you can to try to make things more fair (or more in your favor).

I’ve actually seen some not actually very talented Asian-Americans without hooks who did make it to HYP under very striverish behavior. They played the game of try hard resume optimization, of appearing less Asian. The thing is that most of those people end up not well at all after graduation. Don’t think that HYP guarantees a good job. There is no guarantee is today’s world. Those people did too little in terms of developing actually employable skills. What they got by playing the college admissions game was essentially a pyrrhic victory. Actually competent state school kids do much better than them in the workplace. So, don’t be stupid like that.

Even many actually smart Asian-American HYP grads don’t do all that great. A common outcome is a merely solid engineer at a respected technology company. Some go to a top grad school, but success much depends on the field. Academia has very few openings nowadays, though for engineering, due to industrial demand, it is much less competitive than math or science. A common route of course for the really technically exceptional is quant finance, though those positions tend to be taken by immigrants, who generally undergo a much more rigorous STEM education with less distraction compared to what Asian-Americans receive. The thing is that so many people are irrationally desperate to attend an elite school. Some middle class parents will burn a fortune to send their kid to some fancy prep school full of rich kids, where they easily end up at the bottom half of the school’s social hierarchy, let alone for an elite university. They lose sight of the fact that in many if not most cases, major determines what you do much more than school. There are many cases of these try hards wasting much time, money, and stress for nothing.

Like it or not, America is still very much a white country. Asian-Americans can and should try, but they shouldn’t realistically expect equality. If Chinese parents really want their son to become a lawyer or politician, they should probably stay in China. It’ll be hard there as well, but your odds of success will be probably at least an order of magnitude higher than in America. Here, I use only the male qualification of child in light of how “on average, Asian American women received higher personal ratings and extracurricular ratings than Asian American men.”[3] This is, of course, consistent with what goes on in the real world as well. And it is expected, considering how historically, sexism and racism have always gone together.

A while ago, I wrote on here a rather cynical (or whatever you call it) piece in Chinese regarding elite US schools, which to my pleasant surprise a Chinese international of my acquaintance who attended Harvard commented on affirmatively. Its title has somewhat of a sensationalist provocative vibe to it, translated to English as “American elite universities as a political tool for brainwashing and uplifting (pseudo) elite of Chinese descent.” Of course, I have more or less the highest regard for the STEM being done at these top American institutions, though maybe it is a bit overrated. Much of the humanities and social science coming from those places I find quite questionable though, and that goes along with the cultural and political values fostered by these institutions. On that, I brought up how the former unsuccessful regime of China, the Republic of China, was led and run largely by Chinese graduates of Ivies of their time, who were but superficially Westernized and modernized Chinese. Despite their graduating from these elite schools, they lost the civil war and failed to modernize China, though perhaps that also had much to do with their being in the wrong time. Certainly though, many of the elite Chinese who played prominent roles in China’s modernization from the 50s on did advanced study in STEM in these top American schools. I’ll say that from my experience, it certainly does seem that these schools tend to select for Asians whose social and political viewpoints, often not very grounded on reality, tend to fit them into the aforementioned category, like Jeff Yang, with whom Steve Hsu had a debate. This is of course part of the pattern of American elites’ desire to bring elites of other countries into their circle, in a sufficiently subordinate position. On this, I’ll say how I’ve read comments on how over past half century or so, affirmative action by Harvard and other Ivies has won for American elites not only (a facade of) charity but also cultural and ethnic representatives to advance their interests in, say, African countries. For that, Harvard was useful as a binding force. Surely, Harvard has always played a quintessential role in persisting the rule and influence of the current American elite throughout the world, and like it or not, kissing the ruler’s ass is almost always the easiest way to rise up on the social ladder. In Chinese, to be America’s dog is spoken of as pejorative, but so what, there were and are too many small countries willing to do so, because it brings them, their elites in particular, much economic and political benefit.

Asians tend to be pretty obsessed with prestige. Chinese are very, and Koreans are especially so. In the 80s and 90s and 00s, a degree from a prestigious or good American school was much an upper mobility ticket in China. Now, this is much less so, because there are too many such Chinese now, and also maybe because people in China have increasingly realized that maybe these people aren’t actually all that good, in spite of their brand-name American school. A PhD from MIT from China once told me that now in China, companies are increasingly reluctant to hire “sea turtles;” you have to pay them more, when more often than not, you can find a local guy who can do the job as well or better for much less. This is a sign of devaluation of elite American institutions, and I believe this will continue, given the relatively low level of STEM education and preparation in America (which is impossible to hide to any actually smart, scientifically literate person) along with America’s overall decline.

The short-sighted and personally motivated decisions of the intellectually mediocre and politically delusional American elite over the past generation are, cumulatively, really taking its toll now, on the American economy and the credibility of its ruling class. Their elite institutions, nepotistic and corrupt in its admissions, are losing the public’s trust and alienating Asian-Americans especially, many of whom moved to a foreign country speaking little English with too much blind faith in the so-called American Dream that they sought for themselves and more so for their children. American elites may have thought that they themselves could neglect STEM, that there are plenty of talented foreigners, many of whom Asian, willing to do those jobs indefinitely, often grossly under-compensated and with their American-born, American-raised kids facing higher hurdles in education and at work. This might have been so decades ago, when in their home countries, there was still lack of economic opportunity for smart people. Nowadays, there is a booming and internationally competitive high technology sector in China, with India going that direction as well, in spite of brain drain into America. Collectively, the STEM expertise has over time not only grown itself but transformed into significant leverage for the group, so much that the elites running Harvard need to resort to rogue tactics to preserve themselves. I don’t exactly blame them. It’s just like how people who go the bullshit business and social climbing route do so largely to compensate for their inherent intellectual deficit; at least to me, that’s never a pleasant or honorable position to be in. But what else can you do, if not to accept defeat? I can already foresee such an entrenched group fighting desperately for its own survival. Harvard will do all that it can to get away with what it’s doing right now amidst much backlash. And it’s an extraordinary rich, powerful, well-connected institution, much able to manipulate the outcomes. Either they win, or they reform themselves accordingly, or they become slowly sidelined. We’ll see. I just hope they don’t resort to even nastier tactics. Though that tends to happen when power and survival is at serious risk.

References

[1] http://infoproc.blogspot.com/2018/06/harvard-office-of-institutional.html

[2] http://infoproc.blogspot.com/2018/06/harvard-office-of-institutional_21.html

[3] http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-lee-harvard-legacy-student-advantage-20180622-story.html

[4] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gekcNqlHptM

On credentialism and selection systems

I’ve mentioned before that an Asian-American friend of mine, who is quite smart, disapproves of the whole campaign against Asian quotas spearheaded, or at least advocated, by Steve Hsu and others.

His words are the following:

  1. I don’t believe in legitimizing the credentialist culture of modern academia
  2. I don’t generically feel much kinship with Asian-Americans (who are the most affected by purported discrimination in admissions), even if I might feel more kinship with them on average than I would with any other large ethnic group in America (which is itself not necessarily true)
  3. I don’t find it implausible that there are legitimate reasons to discriminate against Asian-Americans in the admissions process, if by ‘discriminate’ we mean ‘weigh their formal accomplishments less than one would for a member of a different race’
  4. At the end of the line, I believe that persistent whining about this is a reflection of emotional immaturity on the part of Steve et al., in that they seem to have a ‘chip on their shoulder’ which they are incapable of overcoming, and if they were actually taking a principled approach, they would come together and try to create a superior alternative to the radically broken university system, which will likely not be saved by any infusion of Asian students

Here’s what I think.

On 1), I don’t like the credentialism culture of modern academia either. Much of it is a superficial and soulless arms race. Not that grades, test scores, publications, citations, impact factor aren’t strong signals but they are prone to manipulation and artificial inflation, and that there are qualities of work not well-captured by those metrics. People are more or less compelled to single-mindedly play this game, often at the expense of actually substantial scholarship, if they are to survive in academia nowadays.

On 2), I hate to say that this country has become more toxically consumed by identity politics over the years, not to mention that people are judged at least subconsciously by who one is associated with. So collective bargaining is crucial for a group’s position on the status hierarchy.

On 3), there is that due to Asian-Americans’ and Asians in general having traditionally been the underdog, as well as their lack of media presence, which is intimately tied to the alienness of their names in the Western linguistic context, some people are inclined to view Asians are grinds who aren’t actually as capable as they might appear on paper. Especially with the whole tiger mother phenomenon that Amy Chua popularized with her infamous book. Of course, China’s rise over the recent years has altered this perception somewhat, especially the one that Asians are smart but not creative, though surely, it does seem that controlling for grades and test scores, or IQ, Asians do seem less creative, though that may be due to environmental factors, such as de facto or implicit quotas imposed by diversity mandates and economic circumstances.

On 4), I mostly disagree. Asian-Americans don’t really have the power to create a sufficiently credible alternative in a world that runs so heavily on associating with prestigious, usually long-established, institutions like Harvard and Goldman-Sachs. In their ancestral countries, China and India, Asians can improve the university and research system and the economic and technological competitiveness of the country as a whole, so as to make their universities more credible as well. In America, all Asian-Americans can really do is make more noise around the issue to exert more pressure on the elite universities, and also donate more and enhance their media and political presence as their socioeconomic position improves, especially at the elite end, improves, so that the elite universities perceive themselves as having more to lose from discriminating against Asian-Americans based on race.

This is all I have to say as pertains exclusively to Asian-Americans. I shall now give my thoughts on credentialism and selection in general.

The job of admissions and hiring committees and HR is astronomically harder than in the pre-internet age. So many people apply for positions they are grossly under-qualified for, now that it’s so easy to shoot off a resume or application online. There are, of course, application fees for college and grad schools, but they are not enough to deter. This means in the selection process can be afford now significantly less time per candidate, and one can argue that as a consequence, the process becomes more bureaucratic and easier to game. Often, people will in the pre-screening stage eliminate all applicants who do not meet certain formal criteria, such as minimum GPA/test scores or a certain degree from a certain set of sufficiently credible universities. In the case of academia, to my limited second-hand knowledge, committees will look at publications lists with a focus on citation count and impact factor of the journals on which the papers were published and also verify the candidate against senior, tenured faculty in the same or at least similar area of research. In the case of industry jobs, what matters more is the interview, where for technical roles, technical questions will be asked to further test the technical aptitude and knowledge, as well as, the softer aspects of communication and personal chemistry. For non-technicals, I can only say it’s even more about credentials (school, companies, job titles, dates of employment) and how you present yourself. I can only conclude that way more energy is expended now in aggregate on application and selection than before, which is quite costly really. In the career world, people are mostly out for themselves and don’t really care about wasting other people’s time, so long as they can get away with it with impunity more or less.

I’ll say that there is a tradeoff between optimizing for one’s formal credentials and optimizing for one’s actual ability and knowledge. One loses out so much more now if one neglects the former too much due to more competition per position. Surely, there has been gross inflation of credentials. This is in its crudest form epitomized by college’s having become the new high school, thereby rendering prestige of institution a stronger signal. Furthermore, the largely consequent grade inflation and watering down of coursework has added more noise to school transcripts. Contest training, for math in particular, has become so much more popularized, that to not have credentials in those raises questions in some circles, and moreover, there is so much more of an obstacle course of summer programs and scholarships and grants and internships and jobs which one must pass through to some degree if one wants a reasonable chance of success at a specified level. In this sense, there is more pressure to conform to an existing, often complexity-ridden system. It may well be that people nowadays are not all that much better in terms of knowledge and proficiency than before, correcting for the positive effects of technology on learning, but they actually put in much more time and effort.

Now, if one expends much energy on actual substance, there is concern as to what would be lost if those translate not into formal credentials. Arguably more common is the other way round, where one turns into a soulless credential-chasing machine. I’ve been amazed at how many people manage to achieve much higher grades, test scores, and awards than what their knowledge and ability from interaction with them would reasonably indicate. Those people tend to be very boring and risk-averse, and they are often the types our current system selects for, like it or not.

I used to feel like to prove that one is actually smart, at least in STEM, one ought to do sufficiently well in one of those major math, physics, or computing olympiads or contests. I would say that for raw technical ability, that is probably still the strongest signal. Grades are somewhat noisy, because it’s not hard to copy or snipe homework solutions, and for tests, there is a large cramming and figuring out what’s gonna be on the test component. Perhaps they are more consequentially so as there are also some genuinely capable or even brilliant students who for related personality reasons have a hard time getting themselves to care too much about grades. I’ve personally seen some high GPA people, even in college, who signal in what they say or write complete idiocy that would make you wonder if they were pretending stupid, especially if said person were female. Some people learn much more deeply and also much more broadly, outside of what the system teaches them, to a high level of retention, much of which is not captured through any formal credential. From my personal experience, tests of a wide range of knowledge, sufficiently substantial but not too esoteric, are stronger signals since they cannot be crammed for, but they are, for the difficulty of organization, seldom administered.

In the real world and in academia though, what matters is the ability to deliver actual projects and conduct meaningful research, and those, while correlated with ability to learn, are not quite the same. Those are also way more context-dependent, which means more noise, both due to more variance and more ambiguity of judgment.

I will say that at times or even often, society is met with the problem of people finagling themselves into a position to judge what they are not really qualified to, per their ability and expertise, which means some resume-padding bozos rising up and actual competents being passed over. This problem I believe has been accentuated by the ever more credentialist culture that has emerged over the recent years. What’s kind of sad is how the more conformism and risk-aversion rises, the more these traits are pressured and selected for.

I’ve come to notice that there tends to be some difference between maverick genius and the conformist first-rate professional. If one looks at history, real genius, the ones who create paradigm shifts, tends to have more very lopsided profiles, though surely, it might go too far to say that *most* of the real geniuses were out of it in a Stallman or Galois like fashion, especially as it’s the deranged ones which garner more attention. But one can say with high level of confidence that there were many real geniuses who had a hard time fitting in even into the elite mainstream of his profession, who have even been marginalized. I’ve been told that the real genius mathematicians like Perelman, Langlands, and Shimura more or less cut contact with the mathematical community apparently out of disgust. There is also evidence that plenty would-be real geniuses did not actually make it, with their enormous potential having been thwarted by the system at some point and hardly realized. In an ideal world that optimizes for collective value, if somebody else can do the job much better than you and actually really wants to, you should let him do the job and get out of his way. Of course, reality is far from that. I have personally felt that way with regard to my mathematical ability, often feeling that I wasn’t good enough when I failed to derive something on my own, yet I see so many people worse than I am even so eager to play the whole credentialist game without recognizing how deficient they really are. This suggests that I am very partial towards a certain side of the spectrum. I even feel that in some sense, nothing is more embarrassing then formally being much higher than what one’s ability actually merits, since it demonstrates not only incompetence but poor character. However, I am, regrettably, or not, feeling that circumstances are pressuring me ever more towards the opposite direction.

On manipulating perceptions

My thoughts on the importance of perception management, in addition to actually being good, by way of a chat log.

dude I think the jewish domination of liberal media is just IQ
if white americans are 100 SD 15, ashkenazim are 115 SD 15
Then if you look at 130+
In the US you have a 30:1 ratio but among 130+ you would expect like
2:1
dude like 1/3 of the 130+ whites in the US are jews
jewish verbal is probably even > 115 since spatial is lower
also they are coastal and liberal
 
lol you idiot it has much to do with personality socioeconomics culture too
 
which leads to more representation
yeah i’m saying that
coastal and liberal
already on the 2:1
updating more
 
Lol also if Jewish verbal is so high why are Asians beating them at PSAT/SAT
 
stats?
 
English/culture
 
Read Myth of American Meritocracy by Unz
 
link me the stats
 
I read it
 
He has stats there
 
have you read Janet Mertz takedown
 
Yes I’ve skimmed through that
 
Unz overestimates harvard % jewish
and underestimates other things
 
Sure he probably does a little
 
math olympiad % jewish
wait like half the white people at mop are jewish
like half
Since it can be hard to tell by surname
dude I think chinese americans have a massive
verbal IQ
way higher than of mainland china
maybe even higher than ashkenazim
But they haven’t been here long enough
like Jews in the 50s
also a lot of them are not interested
in verbal professions
 
how trainable is verbal SAT?
 
I agree the trainability of the SAT is overstated by people but cramming vocab is totally a thing, no
I dont trust unz statistics at all lol
 
Lol because Chinese-Americans know that verbal careers like law are rigged against them
So many strong ones are hesitant to enter
There’s a cultural affinity aspect to that as well
 
chinese prefer medicine or law
I think a lot of it also is that a society with a functional legal system is alien to most chinese people 😛
once I asked zuming whether china had a legal system
his response: No
 
Haha he’s both right and wrong
 
but yeah law is jewish
but I mean jews are not pulling the strings or anything
like
they are smart verbally
And they tend to be coastal and liberal
The tribe is not jews, it’s coastal liberals
130+ secular coastal liberals are like half jewish
but they dont think of themselves as jewish but as secular coastal liberals
like NYT columnists are half jewish
because 130+ secular costal liberals in the US are half jewish
 
Lol lol
 
if you add the adjective new york
secular new york coastal liberals
it’s a majority easily
 
NYT columnists
 
like manhattan is 20% jewish
 
NYT is full of garbage
 
?
its pretty reliable
Sometimes they call Rouhani a “moderate” and I wince – he’s certainly better than ahmadenijad, but he’s no moderate … “pragmatist” is the right word
 
You really need to broaden your horizons lol
 
hmm?
 
See politically, the Anglo world is setting the standards right now
 
yes, I very much enjoy not living in a society with sesame credit
 
sesame credit?
 
yes
 
I don’t even know what that is
 
china could become an orwellian state
 
Oh that
 
isn’t that great
 
Orwellian state what does that even mean
 
 
It’s just this phrase for evil regime coined by the Anglo media based on the works of an Anglo writer, that’s all.
I’ve read 1984 and Animal Farm
They’re pretty good
Very hyperbolic of course, as is much media
I actually exchanged briefly with Unz
 
ok
 
Maybe I should ask him about what he thinks of Jews being subsumed into the white category in these racial classifications
What do you think of these IQ tests as actual measures of real, biological intelligence
They are very noisy for sure
Especially verbal, because exposure to language varies widely
 
on an individual level
noisy
on a group level good
they are measuring something important
Whether it’s 100% genetic I dont know
I doubt it
 
Lol when most Chinese kids’ parents don’t know English all that well
Heck I’m even unfamiliar with some of the more colloquial English language
People viewed me as funny for it in school
 
sure
what do you think about steven pinker
he’s one of my favorite people
 
No opinion of him
Also those tests are noisy predictors of actual ability on real things as well from my observation
The discrimination against Asians in admissions right now is likely partially premised on the perception that their test scores inflate their actual ability due to prep.
There is still the perception that Asians do well in school but don’t go on to do great things
Again it’s only a perception
Being good and being perceived as good are far from perfectly correlated.
 
I think there is discrimnation against asians
for being recent
for being perceived as grade grubbers
 
Yeah they’re also not rich or well-connected.
 
this perception is not wholly unjustified ofc
yeah also that
i am strongly opposed to ivy asian quotas
 
There is resistance towards Asians becoming successful in America
It’s a white country after all
 
eh
 
Anyhow, I think in a matter of time, the best young people in China will come here for grad school less and less.
America will become a place for China to send its second-rates.
I’ve written that China needs to get better at marketing
 
china gives 0 shits about academics
it’s way too right wing to care about academics
 
too right wing?
And I’ve read on Zhihu that in recent years, the Chinese who studied math in France have turned out better than the ones who came to US for grad school.
 
that’s about france vs US
not china vs US
 
Lol math I think the best young people will still study abroad for a while.
There’s also engineering
Plenty of that China does well now.
I think in actual STEM ability/competence, China/Chinese still have much room for improvement, but now, they’re not bad, and the potential is there, with trends in favor of them.
It’s the whole game of manipulating perceptions that will take longer
Due to cultural difference and inertia
In that regard, it’s already been massively successful in just the last five years if you think about it
The media portrayal in the West has already drastically changed.
For instance, dismissiveness of Chinese tech companies is metamorphizing into fear.
I’m not gonna argue whether or not it’s gone to the other extreme
People can have different opinions on that
In any case, I don’t think China has transitioned to foundational innovator, that’ll take a while, but the increasing level of sophistication combined with the scale is certainly very formidable.
China still relies on US companies for its semiconductors/chips. She has not created a viable ecosystem for its homegrown ones yet. But that could well happen in a decade.
Then US will have even less bargaining chip.
Now, China can easily get away with what it’s doing to Taiwan largely because it is so much stronger economically, technologically, and militarily.
 
jack ma is a smart guy
but I mean
 
Nobody wants to piss off the powerful, because there’s much to lose.
 
china’s system doesnt make too much room for jack ma and yitang zhang
The lack of political freedom is a big obstacle here
 
Lol Jack Ma isn’t smart IQ wise
Struggled to get into a college
He has other qualities
 
The lack of political freedom is a big problem for innovation
 
Hahaha
Elaborate on that one 
 
Name a totalitarian society that was innovative
Germany under the Kaiser wasn’t really totalitarian
 
Uh, USSR?
 
all their jewish scientists moved to america and israel
ussr had good academics, certainly
Because they prevented them from leaving
They didn’t have much in the way of tech
 
Uh, Sputnik?
 
low tech
very low tech
your cell phone is better
there won’t be a chinese steve jobs
 
Sure computer technology they were behind, because semi-conductors and integrated circuits were invented in America
Lol Steve Jobs is mostly marketing 
 
shockley
eugenics
chinese bill gates
 
And what you say about Sputnik is ridiculous
First satellite in orbit
That was back in 1957 silly
You don’t think Ren Zhengfei is as impressive as Steve Jobs?
Huawei
So much of the global telecommunications infrastructure
Now their phones, which US is banning.
 
So
Lol what if China once it has the resources starts a huge propaganda/PR war
You bitch about totalitarianism
China has a ton of young people with nothing to do.
Have them troll the YouTube comments, drown out all the anti-communist Chinese.
Numbers do matter
The Chinese government could also incentivize more people in the West to start blogs supportive of Chinese ideology.
Try to buy out US media outlets
You don’t think China once it is advantaged in resources can start playing the game of manufacturing consent as well

Face recognition in China

I recently learned that face recognition, led by unicorns SenseTime and Megvii, has reached the level of accuracy and comprehensiveness that it is percolating into retail and banking, and moreover police are using it to detect suspects, or so various media articles say, like this one. Just Google “face recognition china.” I’m both surprised and impressed. Of course, in hindsight, what they did was mostly collect, aggregate, and organize enough data to train the deep learning models to the level that they can be put to production. The Chinese government has, after all, resident identity cards for all Chinese citizens with photos. I was certainly somewhat envious of the people involved in that in China, and I feel like such a failure compared to them, and that my life has been so boring and uneventful in comparison. Of course, whether I’m suited to do deep learning is another matter. After playing a bit with neural nets, including on the canonical MNIST data set, I sure was disappointed, and I understood immediately why this guy, who is doing a machine learning PhD at Stanford, had said to me that deep learning is very engineering heavy. I wish I had the enthusiasm and motivation for stuff like GPUs. As for that, all I’ve done was play with CUDA in a way so minor almost as if I did absolutely nothing. Again I don’t see myself as terribly suited towards engineering (I’m too much a purist at heart), but I might eventually be compelled to become interested in that, and once I do, I don’t think I’ll do badly. This also makes me wonder what I would’ve ended up like had I stayed in China. I’m sure I would’ve been weird there too, though I would also be more like everyone else. I wonder what I would have ended up majoring in there, and what I would’ve ended up doing afterwards. I’d like to think that I would have gotten a much better education and cultural experience there, though of course, the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. For instance, in America, Asian quotas means you are judged relative to other Asians, but being in China means that automatically, and China, by virtue of having low resources per capita, is, needless to say, a grossly competitive society with fewer second chances, and thereby even harsher on late bloomers, though surely, the gaokao happens at age 18, whereas in America, grades start necessarily mattering at as early as age 14-5, when many are still very immature. I must acknowledge that as much as I dislike various aspects of the American education system, it is extremely generous, from what I see, relatively speaking, in tolerating failure at a young age. In China, you test into a specific department at a university, and once you’re in, it’s very hard to change, which means some land in majors they end up finding themselves unsuitable for. At age 18, it’s really hard to make such a decision, especially when you don’t really know anything about the actual content of the major, which is usually the case when one is a clueless kid. This is why I say that before you commit officially to an area, always try to learn something about it on your own beforehand to increase confidence that you actually have at least reasonable, and preferably high, talent for it.

On the broader topic of technology in China, it is needless to say that they are still quite a ways behind America and the advanced Western countries. Look at what the ZTE ban has done. China has its own CPUs but not the ecosystem for it. China still buys and deploys much of its most advanced military technology, including jet engines and surface-to-air missiles, an indicator that its indigenous versions of those are still seen as unproven, unreliable, and of lower quality, though surely they’ve made great strides on that the past decade. I stumbled on the video of this military parade held on August 1st, 2017 to mark the 90th anniversary of the Nanchang Uprising that showcased some of the latest developments. I didn’t like it all that much at first, with its overall presentation, the imagery and music in sync, kind of, how should I say it, corny, and I felt the music paled in comparison to the music of the Soviet Red Army, which is very hard to beat, at least based on my taste, though listening to the music again, I grew to like it more. Surely, I would characterize the whole thing as rather sinister, and representative portions of that would be this and this. Musically, the part that left the most memorable impression was this, and to be honest, I found the non-musical aspect of that part both awkward and sinister, especially coupled with the music. I’m sure many people in the West would view this parade as rather weird, or even effeminate, as much as I hate that stereotype of East Asians in America.

Yet in spite of overall and in some cases critical backwardness, China is managing to unveil a face recognition system at a level of sophistication and scale, and also scariness/creepiness that many in America could only dream of. Surely, that was far from my expectation. Who knows. Maybe in a decade, China will have a nationwide genome database. I say this with the awareness that for anything of scale, there is a tremendous advantage to homogeneity and central organization. We already see, in the case of face recognition, China’s using this to compensate for its inferior technology as far as strict quality and capability is concerned.

As far as I can tell, Chinese and Chinese society place a strong emphasis on STEM and the society as a whole is far more scientifically literate than American society, which is advantageous for certain pro-STEM policies and government, though surely, China is still struggling to produce the best people in many areas, for which the corresponding elite subcultures in the West are difficult if not impossible to transmit. It will be very interesting to see what kind of novel stuff comes out of China organically over the next decade or so, especially as China seeks further to create its own distinct ecosystem, as opposed to remaining in many ways still a subsidiary of America and Russia. In any case, I am quite a fan of the political culture of China, and on the contrary, I am rather sick of the one in America.

Math festival

I had the pleasure of volunteering for a math festival for elementary school children. There were puzzles, mathematical games, various fun math worksheets (sometimes with figures of animals as variable names heh), building blocks, and the likes. It was organized by some Russians working in technical fields in the area, of which one family has produced some relatively distinguished mathematicians, which go back to, of course, the Soviet era. I was thoroughly impressed by their organization, energy, and enthusiasm, as well as their variety. I had briefly attended back when I was a high school student the math circle that they had started well before then even and kept up till now.

Again, this furthers my impression that Russians/Soviets have quite a culture of pure pursuit of excellence, that some highly educated ones in STEM have brought over to the US as well. When they were not satisfied with what kids were getting here, education wise, they started their own math circles. I was actually, at the crypto-arithmetic station I was mentoring, with this adult adult, who was mentoring the same station. I would, expectedly, when there were no kids there, talk with him (occasionally in my very limited Russian) about various things, such as software technology and also competitive programming in Russia. On the latter, this year’s ACM ICPC, held in Beijing, was won by Moscow State and Moscow Institute of Physics & Technology, with Peking University and University of Tokyo taking third and fourth, despite the home field advantage. This is consistent with Russians beating Chinese and Japanese on TopCoder and CodeForces as well, with the former American organized one in decline, much out of its outdated Java Applet (and almost certainly an over-bloated, unmaintainable legacy system) user interface and the latter Russian organized one on the rise. On this, that guy was like: in Russia, people really care about doing things well, in America, people do things for money, which only sometimes leads to good results. He said that back in the Soviet era, life was much better for kids, because activities such as sports and math were free, though of course, there were selection mechanisms in place on limited capacity, which really encouraged kids to become really good at what they chose to do. Moreover, he was like if America, with its abundant resources, actually utilized it very well for education, it would be like a paradise, except that’s far from the case. I told him that it seems like Russia’s economy and science research, despite difficulties, is resurging. On that, I had read on Zhihu that the younger generation of Russians has produced some real stars in math, most notably this guy named Alexander Efimov, who is the youngest invited speaker of the International Congress of Mathematicians (ICM) this year, or something like that, and they are staying at that Steklov Institute or similar places instead of coming to America. I also brought up my knowledge of the existence of Yandex and vKontakte, Russia’s Google and Facebook respectively, as well as its vibrant defense sector. While at the event, something came to my mind, which was given all the hype of alleged Russian interference in the 2016 elections, will there be backlash soon too for supposed Russian interference in American education, with events like these? Yes, I noticed how the event was full of Russians and parents and immigrant kids of other nationalities, and Americans were few. I like how the Soviet Union and Russia has quite a different ecosystem, both culturally and technologically, which is a positive for diversity. It seems like though Russia is essentially Western culturally, white and Christian, the West is so reluctant to accept her as a member of the Western community, and on the contrary, many of these idiot American politicians are always seeking to give her trouble. On this note, I remember how Gwydion Williams keeps emphasizing and reiterating how the West blundered in the 90s by ruining Russia with awful economic advice instead of more wisely integrating the fallen USSR into the Western system, which she would have been eager to be part on, so long as terms were reasonable. In any case, I find that the USSR left us some pretty damn good stuff culturally, scientifically, technologically, and artistically, and I am willing to acknowledge and appreciate that notwithstanding how many in our current culture might perceive me for it.

Bob Sykes on Disqus once said:

Russia’s economy is often derided as merely Spain East, but the range of things they do indicates that their economy is at least as large as Germany’s and might be as large as Japan’s. Our economists not only produce deeply flawed policies, they can’t even count.

I agree. I heartily believe that GDP is a deeply flawed measure of economic power. It is a very artificial, human construct. It does not take into account the quality or self-sufficiency of the economy, and is prone to artificial inflation. In Russia’s case, it is transparently clear to me that they are grossly underrated, both right now and potential wise, largely for political reasons. It is transparently clear to me that Russia has the advantage of possessing, for the most part, 1) the expertise and infrastructure to create military hardware that is at least close to American/Western levels 2) a highly scientifically literate and technologically skilled workforce and population 3) ethnic and cultural homogeneity (which America certainly lacks and could be ruined by, eventually) 4) a culture and education that emphasizes excellence and substance over superficial flash and showmanship. So despite what on the surface appears to be deep difficulties and a near permanent state of collapse, I am confident that Russia will make quite a comeback in a matter of time. Of course, altering and correcting perception, under American/Western controlled world public opinion and political norms, is another matter.

In order to not digress too much into politics, I’ll conclude with some photos I took from today’s event.

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