“U.S. will have to work hard to win over Vietnam’s conservatives”

Anti-American sentiments remain entrenched among certain groups. Winning over "Vietnam's conservatives" would not be in the best interests of Viet Nam. In fact, the country's foreign policy is characterized by independence and openness. Here's an excerpt from the description on the website of the Embassy of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam in the US: … Continue reading “U.S. will have to work hard to win over Vietnam’s conservatives”

“The Empire” Strikes Back… at the Environment

Credit: Vinhomes I love the names of some condo buildings and developments here, e.g., The Authentic, The One, Zen. They're so pretentious and over-the-top. Some put a smile on my face while others make me want to cry and mourn the loss of agricultural land and the scenic beauty that is (was) Vietnam. Translation: The … Continue reading “The Empire” Strikes Back… at the Environment

The Shadowy Business of International Education

Credit: Academic Matters (OCUFA) "According to Broitman, the economics of the system reveal a fundamental truth: a student who walks into an agent’s shop is not the client—they’re the product. If an agent is getting commissions from an unremarkable community college in rural Ontario, then their only motivation is to get every teenager who walks … Continue reading The Shadowy Business of International Education

“Nothing is Impossible” Finds It Impossible to Tell the Truth About Vietnam

Here's my latest for CounterPunch. Thanks to Rutgers University Press for the review copy. Better late than never. Here are some excerpts, including the two paragraphs followed by a section entitled The Measure of the Man. Enjoy (or not)! Just before the Lunar New Year, I finally received my review copy of Nothing is Impossible: America’s … Continue reading “Nothing is Impossible” Finds It Impossible to Tell the Truth About Vietnam

It’s Time to Ban Tobacco Products

Our vocation can nourish our understanding and compassion or erode them. We should be awake to the consequences, far and near, of the way we earn our living. - Thích Nhất Hạnh (1926-2022) Credit: Vietnam smoking via Michael Hero / Shutterstock.com It's time to ban tobacco products. There, I said it, what some are thinking but … Continue reading It’s Time to Ban Tobacco Products

Vietnam: Fewer Natural Forests, Increasingly More Golf Courses

This essay is from a website called TheVietnamese with the tagline Independent Journalism Matter. What it describes is yet another example of development in Viet Nam that is far from sustainable and of ecocide, defined as the destruction of the natural environment by deliberate or negligent human action. Who will benefit? That's easy. The company … Continue reading Vietnam: Fewer Natural Forests, Increasingly More Golf Courses

Faux Wine: Up Close and Personal

Here's a bottle of "wine" that I received as a Tết (Lunar New Year) gift. I ran out of my regular supply so I opened it - with low expectations. One whiff and I knew it was essentially grape juice in a wine bottle with what looked like a fake (read cheap) cork that didn't … Continue reading Faux Wine: Up Close and Personal