Society

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Rolando Redux

What’s it like to be the only four customers in a brand-new high-end Italian restaurant, surrounded by a corps of eight superbly trained waiters, eating a meal prepared by one of the most exciting che...
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Will Al-Jazeera Change Malaysia?

Given the docile nature of the local press, Malaysia seems a curious base for one of the world’s most aggressive and controversial news organizations. But now at least a handful of the country’s...
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Teeny Tiny China

On January 21, 1992, then-Chinese President Deng Xiaoping strolled through the stone forests of Yunnan, turned left at the Three Gorges, quickly saw the Xian terra cotta warriors, walked the entire length o...
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Japan’s Pink Kink

  The Japanese sex industry, often referred to as the “Pink Trade”, looks inexplicably kinky and oddly ritualized. But as strange as it seems, it is also pervasive and...
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Eyeing the Neighbors With Distrust in Asia

Bopping -- although staggering like an overloaded pack mule is probably a more apt description -- frequently back and forth between Hong Kong and Shenzhen is almost always a study in contrasts, though not alway...
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Milton Friedman’s Hong Kong Misconceptions

Milton Friedman was without doubt a great economist and, more important, one who, for good or ill, influenced politicians including Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher and Augusto Pinochet. But his much quoted...
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Could Singapore Have Feet of Clay?

Singaporeans, as the rest of Asia knows to tiresome detail, are called to a higher standard. And the reason we know is that Singapore Inc never tires of telling us. As they see it, ther...
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The Rising Dragon’s Environmental Disaster

Its nose-curling stench hits you even before you see the floating carpet of green algae and a dense matting of water hyacinth. Once a beauty spot praised by poets, Dianchi Lake, around Kunming, the capital ...