Tag Archives: truth

10 Reasons Why Taiwan Sucks for Dating, Social Life and Fun

12 Mar

Janet Hsieh, the host of Fun Taiwan, acts all giddy about Taiwan over nothing. She paints a rosy picture of Taiwan and tells you some cultural info about it. But she doesn’t tell you the deeper or negative aspects of it, since her job is to promote Taiwan tourism, not that of a deep philosopher and observer seeking truth. Well since I am the latter, I will tell you some deep truths about Taiwan that no one else has the guts to, since it’s not popular to say negative truths, and plus most people are not deep either.

The truth is, Taiwan is not a good place if you are seeking a great social scene, free-flowing fun, personal happiness, love, romance or passion. Taiwan’s social culture and social conditioning are simply not conducive to these things. Below I will explain why and provide sensible reasons that are obvious and undeniable (though taboo). Let’s begin.

1. It is very hard to meet people, as they are not open with strangers but very closed in nature.

Social interaction is usually restricted within closed exclusive cliques. You can’t just “go out and meet people”. People don’t generally talk to strangers or make eye contact with them. They act cold and distant toward strangers, treating them as if they don’t exist. (Unless they are trying to sell you something of course, but that goes without saying) Trying to start conversations with strangers feels awkward and unnatural, not smooth or relaxed like in most of Europe. By default, there is a “cold wall” between strangers (similar to New York City, Hong Kong, Tokyo, etc).

In fact, Taiwanese themselves will even admit that they are “less open” than foreigners, even Americans. You can ask them yourself. They will admit to it, for it is common knowledge. In Taiwan, only elderly and middle age people talk to strangers freely. Foreigners will too of course. (But what’s the point of coming to Taiwan if only foreigners will socialize with you?)

2. The only appropriate way to meet people is to be introduced through friends or groups, or have a connecting routine such as school, work or organized activity.

The problem with this is that it’s very LIMITING and RESTRICTIVE, for it means that you have to DEPEND on someone to introduce you to others. If no one introduces you, then you are out of luck and have run into a “cold wall” (pardon the pun). What this means is that you are dependent on others for your social life. You can’t just “make it happen” on your own.

You also have to depend on GROUPS. You see, in Taiwan, everything is done in groups. People go out in groups. They make friends in groups. They meet people in groups. They travel in groups. They even think in groups (like a hive mind). An individual is worthless and insignificant in Taiwan, and seen as a loser without a group. Hence, Taiwan is not for the individualist. Rather, it is for the empty conformist with no individual identity who seeks to follow and conform.

However, even if you do meet people through introductions or groups, it won’t be easy to connect with them (for all the reasons mentioned in this article). Taiwanese and Foreigners are on very different wavelengths and will likely not have much in common, even though they may be polite to each other’s face. Broad minded individualist foreigners and insular group-oriented Taiwanese do not vibe naturally.

Furthermore, even if you do break into a clique (a closed exclusive social circle) your social life is still going to be LIMITED to within that clique. The whole clique scene is very rigid an limiting, similar to how it is in the US. Again, you can’t just “go out and meet people.” Taiwan’s social scene is no doubt very closed and cliquish.

3. Young adults in Taiwan are painfully shy, insecure, nonassertive, and lack confidence and social skills (especially females).

It takes confidence, assertiveness and social skills to talk to strangers. Sadly, they’ve been subjected to extreme amounts of fear and abuse during their childhood growing up. Their behavior is conditioned through “negative reinforcement” in the form of fear, abuse, scolding, guilt trips, overly strict parenting, etc.

The result of this is that they become weak, insecure, subservient, and taught to live in fear by their parents, peers, culture and media. While this is true in America to an extent too, it’s taken to a bigger extreme in Taiwan. Only when they reach middle age do Taiwanese people become confident enough to talk to strangers. But before that, they are too insecure, nonassertive and shy to talk to strangers. This is yet another reason why it’s so hard to meet people in Taiwan.

So you see, there are multiple obstacles and factors that go against you when it comes to social life in Taiwan. I don’t have to tell you that when everything is going against you, then you are in the wrong scene.

(Note: While the above may not apply to Westernized Taiwanese, you will not see many of them in Taiwan because most of them will either be living overseas, or taking extensive trips abroad, where they fit in better. Also, not surprisingly, Taiwanese Americans and Asian Americans (whose personalities are Westernized) will usually not be comfortable living in Taiwan. Not only do they not fit in with the culture, but they will be constantly expected to be something they are not – a local Taiwanese. This will lead to an identity crisis and conflict, because they are accustomed to acting American or Westernized and asserting themselves as proud individuals. But Taiwan will not be conducive to that at all. Asians are not supposed to act like Westerners in Taiwan. If they do, it will look “freakish”. Thus, an Americanized Taiwanese will feel like they cannot “be themselves” in Taiwan, which is very awkward indeed. They can’t even speak English out loud without drawing shocking stares.)

4. Taiwanese are like empty shells with no soul, personality or passion. 

Even if you make a lot of friends in Taiwan, you eventually realize that these friends are really just casual acquaintances, because there is no real connection with them. Taiwanese are like empty shells with no soul or emotions, like plastic mannequins (similar to America, but even worse). Their faces are passionless and robotic, as if their soul and humanity has been squashed, suppressed or drained out of them.

It’s very sad and scary, like an inhuman society from the Twilight Zone. I’ve seen some of the older generation Taiwanese show some semblance of having a soul or emotions, but the young adult generation definitely seem empty and hollow with plastic exteriors. Thus, the friendships you make in Taiwan will ultimately be unsatisfying.

It’s also kind of depressing when you see that people are empty shells here because it leaves you wondering “How can humans descend into such a state of being?” What’s scary is that you know deep down that you don’t want to become like them, thus being around them could have a toxic negative effect on you.

What’s worse, most young Taiwanese are duds with no personality and can’t even hold a normal conversation. There is nothing really there to connect with. They are the least engaging youngsters I’ve ever met – usually quiet with nothing to say and no expression (except for very superficial ones). When you talk to them, after a few minutes or few sentences, the conversation runs dry, like you’ve run into a brick wall with nothing more to say. Asking them open ended questions about themselves, like interviewers do, will not change any of this. (if it did, I wouldn’t have a problem engaging them) They are like empty shells.

5. Taiwanese are extremely cold and uptight in their body language and expression.

I don’t know about you, but I find it very hard to relax, be happy or even be myself around people who look so uptight and anal-retentive. It kind of “rubs me the wrong way” is how I would put it. I guess if you are cold and uptight yourself, you may not see anything wrong with it, since they are the same as you. But if you are not, then it can be very awkward to be around people who are, especially if you come from a culture where people are not like that at all. The point here is that being constantly surrounded by very cold uptight people is obviously not conducive to happiness, fun or relaxation at all.

6. If you like meeting girls, or are seeking a date or girlfriend, there are a multitude of major obstacles against you.

a) First, Taiwanese females simply do not like being introduced to male strangers (unless they are desperate, but if that’s the case, then they are likely older and/or unattractive). Instead, they prefer to meet guys through the clique of friends that they grew up with, or the clique at their school or work. So if you didn’t grow up in their “circle”, then you are pretty much “out”. And if you are “out”, the bad news, as you might have guessed, is that their “cliques” are NOT inclusive at all.

b) Second, Taiwanese people are reluctant to introduce females for some reason, probably because their females are not comfortable with it (or they are too picky). Although Taiwanese often like to joke about introducing a single female to a single male, they rarely follow through with it. In this regard, they are “all talk and no action”. However, even if you are introduced to a female, suffice to say, females who need to be “introduced” tend to not be attractive or even fun to hang out with.

c) Third, Taiwanese young females are not very open or approachable. They are generally uptight, stiff, closed, and have a cold wall around them. Even worse, most are also insecure, fearful, fragile and lack confidence and social skills. Thus they are not even comfortable with meeting guys. Such traits are huge obstacles to single heterosexual males no doubt, but unfortunately are the usual traits of Taiwanese females. There is even a social rule in Taiwan that “girls don’t talk to strangers, especially male strangers”.

d) Fourth, most Taiwanese girls have no personality and no social skills. They are duds who can’t hold a normal conversation and are not engaging at all. When they do talk, the things they say will be very superficial and meaningless. Thus, there is nothing really there to connect with. Asking them open ended questions about themselves, like interviewers do, will not change any of this. (if it did, I wouldn’t have a problem engaging them) When they talk amongst their friends, they squeak to each other like little mice, acting very fragile and insecure. Very weird. In contrast, girls in most other countries (Europe, Russia, Philippines, Mainland China, etc.) are far easier to engage in a natural normal conversation. So you gotta wonder, what’s the problem with Taiwan?

e) Fifth, to make matters worse, modern Taiwanese females have difficult personalities and many hang ups. They will drop a guy for the smallest things at the drop of a hat. They are very judgmental, cold, unromantic, and act like flaky divas. Materialism has corrupted and spoiled them, making them more and more like American girls now. Deep down, they are childish and have terrible communication skills. Older generation Taiwanese often complain that young girls mumble and speak too fast, and are hard to understand.

f) Sixth, to make things worse, in the few nightclubs and discos that exist in Taiwan, guys always outnumber girls. Every girl is with a closed group of friends, male date, or “Jimmy” which is a male friend in her clique that shields her from outside strangers. This of course, pits the numerical odds against you. As in the US, there are many guys competing for a few girls. But these girls are not even open to talking strangers, as already mentioned.

So you see, when it comes to meeting females and getting dates in Taiwan, there is a LOT going against you, a whole multitude of obstacles in fact. It’s like everything is against you. If that doesn’t totally suck, then I don’t know what does. None of this, of course, is conducive to dating or romance.

Moreover, even if you do find a partner in Taiwan, still, your options are limited in that you are essentially “taking what you can get” (aka “settling”) rather than having a wide array of choices. Unless of course, you have low standards.

Now, this might sound bad, but it’s true: Taiwanese females don’t become open and friendly with strangers until they reach middle age – at which time they are no longer desirable and are most likely taken as well. This is a classic case of Murphy’s Law: When they are young and desirable, they are not open or friendly with strangers and not easy to meet at all. But when they are no longer young or desirable (and either taken or desperate if not) then they start to become friendly and more sociable with strangers. I know that might sound bad, but it’s true. (If that offends anyone, then I apologize. No offense was intended. But please remember, I didn’t make things the way they are. So please don’t blame the messenger.)

7. The Taiwanese psyche is completely dominated by fear and guilt. 

As a result of abusive psychological conditioning, Taiwanese emotions are suppressed and internalized. They are taught not to express themselves, but to be humble, submissive and obedient.

Deep down, they live in perpetual fear and worry about every little thing. While caution is a good thing, they overdo it and take it to the extreme, imagining the worst in every scenario even when it’s unwarranted. As a result, they never truly live. You can feel the “fear vibe” of the Taiwanese masses when you are in their proximity. They also harbor constant guilt about not measuring up or not being “good enough”. None of this is conducive to a “friendly and open” social atmosphere of course.

What you should know is that if you are in Taiwan long term, eventually the “fear energy” of the people will rub off on you and affect you negatively as well. Even if you are a person who does not believe in living in fear, like a hippie or New Ager, it will still eventually affect you, especially since you are eating their food, which is produced from “fear consciousness”. (Remember that the thoughts, emotions and energy of the person preparing your food goes into the food as well.)

This is a downside of Taiwan that is rarely mentioned, if ever, because people are in denial about it and are not conditioned to look deeper. Instead, they are conditioned to only care about working and raising a family, and other practical matters on the surface.

8. Taiwan is a strict business-oriented and workaholic society which teaches that the only things that matter are making money and food.

Personal happiness and feelings are seen as irrelevant and worthless. All that matters is work, productivity and conformity. People are conditioned to be stiff, repressed, and act like cold zombies without soul, heart or emotion. It’s very sad and makes them almost inhuman and robotic-like. There is no free expression or creativity or thinking for yourself. It’s all about conformity. The individual is nothing. The only “passion” one is allowed to have is passion for work and productivity (no surprise there).

That’s why it goes without saying that Taiwan is not a very fun place, since none of this is conducive to “fun” at all. Though the concept of “fun” is relative, the kind of fun I’m talking about is the highly festive free-spirited free-flowing heartfelt type of fun that exists in much of Europe, Mexico, Latin America, Russia, Philippines and Thailand. (If you’ve been there, you’ll know what I mean) The fact is, Taiwanese are extremely uptight. They do not radiate warmth or emotion. Even when they are trying to have fun, you will never see them truly “let loose”.

Also, Taiwan is not a place for one who values personal happiness either, since that doesn’t even matter in Taiwanese culture. Besides, how can you be happy around people who are extremely cold and uptight and dominated by fear? I find it hard to relax or be myself around such people. Eventually, their vibes will affect you as well.

Further, such a repressed workaholic culture will also not provide venues for you to pursue your “happiness”, unless of course your happiness is derived from living a monotonous workaholic lifestyle with little interest in much else.

In Taiwan, practically everyone is a conformist. Thus, they will conform to the workaholic culture with very little else to live for. How can that possibly be conducive to happiness? It can’t. Trying to find an nonconformist in Taiwan is like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Even if they exist, they will be silent and alienated, or they will leave the country. Finding an “outspoken nonconformist and freethinker” is a near impossibility. (Not to brag, but I seem to be the only one)

9. Taiwan is a very prudish and conservative culture in the extreme.

No public display of affection is allowed, such as kissing between couples. And TV soap operas and dramas that are produced in Taiwan almost never show people kissing or showing any physical affection.

Flirting is a big taboo in Taiwan. It is considered dirty creepy behavior. Taiwanese females do not flirt back with males. They do not allow gentlemen to kiss their hand, like women in Europe do. And they do not greet people with kisses on both cheeks, like European females do. On the flip side, a Taiwanese American girl in Taipei wrote me once and told me that when she tries to flirt with Taiwanese guys, they do not reciprocate but instead get weirded out.

Obviously, none of this is conducive to romance, love or passion. I don’t even need to tell you that. In fact, if you observe Taiwanese couples, you will notice that they even act cold and uptight around each other. They do not appear “in love” or romantic, and they often eat together in silence with very little to say to each other. What this means is that even if you are in a relationship with a Taiwanese, it is likely to be dull and cold, devoid of warmth, romance or passion.

In truth, Taiwan is best suited for the conservative prim and proper type, not for those who are wild, open and passionate. To fit into the social environment, you have to act innocent and goody-two-shoes to the point of cheesiness. If that’s not you, then you will constantly have to act like something you are not, just to fit in. I don’t have to tell you that suppression of your true self is not good for you mentally or emotionally in the long run.

I find that the type of people that seem to fit best in Taiwan are those who are conservative, goody-two-shoes, passive, reserved, simple, group-oriented, conformist, narrow, and not very intellectual or deep. (But of course, I am the opposite of those things) The two traits I find most common in foreigners living in Taiwan long term are “reserved and passive”.

10. The reckless, dangerous and rude driving on Taiwan’s streets and roads is stressful and annoying to deal with.

Taiwanese cities, even the small ones, are way too cramped and packed with too many scooters and vehicles. Driving is not an enjoyable experience in Taiwan, but a stressful one that can cause tempers to flare. It is also hard to park if you are driving a car. And if you are driving a scooter, then you are taking chances with your life because scooter accidents can be fatal. None of this is conducive to happiness, peace or relaxation.

On top of all this, there is not much beautiful scenery or nature in Taiwan, and the architecture and buildings are ugly and drab. The climate is often unpleasant and the air is humid and not very clean or crisp. (by American standards that is) It’s also hard to find open fields, prairies or pastures.

Also, the culture is boring and flat, and does not even feel inclusive. There is nothing to grow your soul. Time just passes by and is wasted with no meaning or special memories. Eventually, you regret the time you waste in Taiwan, which could be better spent elsewhere.

Simple test to verify my claims

If you doubt what I say above, or have never been to Taiwan, then here is a simple way to test what I mean. Try getting as many Taiwanese as possible to shake your hand, especially women, because women tend to conform to the culture (which in this case is a prudish culture) more strictly than men do. More so than men, women are more prone to caring about trends, what others think of them, their social standing, and about following traditions. And as any guy can attest to, women are also more easily influenced/swayed by media advertising (which is why advertisers overwhelmingly tend to target women rather than men of course).

Therefore, women will generally reflect their culture more strongly than men, which means that they will be an accurate barometer of their culture. To most women, truth is relative – it’s whatever their culture tells them, whatever is popular, and whatever their friends say, not something you derive at through logic, reason, evidence and critical thinking. (Again, no offense intended. That’s just how women generally are.)

Anyway, I ask you to do this experiment because a person’s handshake reveals their inner level of confidence and comfort level. And a handshake, unlike a hug or a kiss, is a noncontroversial social gesture that can be done with people you don’t know well. After shaking many Taiwanese hands, you will notice the following:

a) Most handshakes will be polite, but weak and soft, like cold fish. This will especially be the case with female hands. What this means is that the person is insecure, fearful, shy and not confident or assertive.

b) The only firm grips you might get will be from older Taiwanese (mostly male) who are accustomed to shaking hands with clients in business or sales occupations.

c) Even if you get a firm handshake, you will not feel any true warmth, nor any intensity or passion at all. You will notice that their skin and vibe feel more cold, robotic and reptilian-like. This is reflective of their emotions and state of being, which is repressed and prudish to a high degree. It’s almost like shaking hands with a robot or android.

Go ahead and try this experiment. Eventually, you will see what I mean.

The taboo and hypocrisy of talking about all this

In spite of all this, wherever you are in the world, including Taiwan, there is like this unspoken social rule that you always have to say “People are very friendly here” even if it’s not true. All major travel websites and travel TV programs abide by this rule, and will say “people are so friendly” everywhere they go. To say otherwise in any particular place, even if it’s true, is a big no no. Isn’t it stupid that you have to say something that you know isn’t true (lie) to avoid offending others?

It is simply not considered polite or cool to say that people around you are unfriendly or closed and stuck up. Instead, one is only allowed to say, “I am shy and not outgoing, so I don’t meet people often” or “I work a lot and am very busy so I don’t have time to get out and meet people.”

But if you say, “I am outgoing and open, but people around me are very closed, stuck up, don’t talk to strangers, and have a cold wall around them” it will draw shocks and disturbed looks from people, no matter how true, because no one would dare to say that openly. It is simply uncool and politically incorrect to say such a thing. Doesn’t it SUCK when you can’t say the truth?

The problem with the acceptable statements above is that they falsely presuppose that general people around you are very friendly, outgoing and easy to meet, and that all you have to do is be outgoing yourself and you will meet people and make friends. But this is NOT TRUE if you are in a culture or place where people are not open or friendly. In my experience, as long as you are friendly and sociable, then it mostly depends on location.

Also, have you noticed that it is ok for people to BE unfriendly, but if you SAY that “people here are unfriendly” then it’s a taboo and social violation? In other words, you can be unfriendly, but you can’t say that people are unfriendly. Is that weird and hypocritical or what?

Forum discussion about this article.

See Also:

The Four Biggest Problems With Taiwan

The Dark Side of Taiwan

The Pros and Cons of Taiwan

Taboo Observations and Truths About Taiwan

The Problem with Janet Hsieh and the Politically Correct Crowd: Their Suppression of Truth, Honesty and Free Speech

9 Jul

“One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious. The latter procedure, however, is disagreeable and therefore not popular.”

– Carl Gustav Jung in his essay “The Philosophical Tree”, paragraph 335, (1945)

 

The problem with Janet Hsieh and the crowd like her that praises perpertual positivity and fakeness is that they place political correctness over truth.

You see, the unspoken law of political correctness says that everywhere you go, you have to be positive and non-controversial. And when asked about any particular country, you are expected to say, “the place is great and the people are friendly”, even when it’s not true. To do otherwise is a taboo that few dare to do.

Most people, especially young people, are conformists who are trying to fit in and be socially accepted. They do not think freely nor do they speak freely. Having no mind of their own, they will conform without even being told to. Therefore, they will conform to political correctness as well.

The problem with political correctness is that it places positivity and politeness over truth, honesty and free speech. This means you are not allowed to talk about the negatives about a country or culture, especially when it involves people. What this means if that if I go to Taiwan (Janet Hsieh’s holy shrine) or Japan, or a similar type of culture, and I find the people to not be friendly (outside of elderly people and customer service people), I’m NOT allowed to speak honestly about it.

In reality, Taiwanese are very insular, cold, closed and uptight. They are not open or natural at all, but very repressed and high strung. This is especially the case with young women (which makes Taiwan suck), who are very closed, stuck up, cold, uptight, devoid of personality and have no social skills. They are extremely cliquish, not open or natural at all. Their body language is 100 percent uptight and are not relaxed at all. They have no social skills and only know how to talk to people in their small circle consisting of other similar insular people with no social skills.

Further, the vibe in Taiwan makes me feel very uncomfortable. I can’t breathe or relax. It’s way too uptight and repressed, and what’s more, I’m NOT allowed to talk about it due to politically correct censorship. It’s almost like if you aren’t closed and uptight, then you don’t fit in Taiwan, which is weird. So basically, if you are honest, sane and aware, then you are abnormal in Taiwan. It’s kind of upside down, like the Twilight Zone. Either way, Taiwan is definitely NOT for people who are freethinkers or nonconformists.

Now the thing is, if I tell the above truths to local Taiwanese people, NONE of them deny it. They all know that their own Taiwanese are not open, and consider Westerners to be far more open. Taiwanese will admit that their women are closed and not open to strangers or easy to talk to or meet at all. It’s so obvious that not even native local Taiwanese will deny it. Thus, when I bring this up, none of them argue with me, but admit that I’m right.

However, when I say the above to Westernized politically correct types of people (whether White or Asian), they will start denying it and getting defensive because I’ve violated the guidelines of political correctness. They are programmed to get offended and argue against any observations that are not politically correct. I mean, sure everyone will have different experiences in Taiwan. But many people will lie about their experiences just to sound positive so as not to look like a loser too. I’ve seen this. And some will fabricate examples as well. Most young people only want to hear that “everything is great and everything is cool” rather than the honest truth. It’s weird.

But again, the important thing is that the most honest and objective people will concur that what I say about Taiwan is mostly true, and virtually 100 percent of local native Taiwanese will admit that I’m right as well. This speaks volumes.

In fact, if you walk around Taiwan, you will see that most foreigners only hang out with other foreigners. They certainly don’t hang out with groups of local Taiwanese. Sometimes, in groups of foreigners, there will be a few Westernized Taiwanese or Asians as well. But these Westernized Taiwanese types that hang in foreigner groups do not reflect the mainstream closed insular Taiwanese. They are pro-Western Taiwanese who vibe with foreigners better and feel more free and relaxed around them (as opposed to uptight repressed Taiwanese).

Anyway, the point is that since most foreigners in Taiwan are seen mostly with other foreigners, this speaks volumes to support my case. It means that Taiwan is obviously NOT an inclusive culture at all. In contrast, in more inclusive countries such as those in Europe, Russia, or South America, you will see foreigners with groups of locals all the time.

So you see, there are volumes of data that support my claims about Taiwan. Besides my own experience, I have many testimonials from others as well attesting to the same. I am also a credible source in that I have a reputation for accuracy, honesty and not being afraid to stand up for the truth. So I know I am telling the truth.

The only problem with the truth about Taiwan I’ve told above is that political correctness, which rules the speech of most of the young generation, says that it is NOT allowed to be spoken. Instead, I am expected to lie and say that “Taiwan is great! People are very friendly!” Well I don’t know about you, but I hate lying, especially about a country that I find very unfriendly and get bad vibes from.

Now keep in mind that people have different definitions of what “friendliness” means. So in that sense, the word is a little subjective. By “friendliness” I am not talking about polite people or helpful customer service people, like most people are. No. To me, “friendliness” means:

– Being approachable and engaging
– Easy to chat up and socialize with, feels natural and fluid
– Having a relaxed open body language toward strangers rather than an uptight cold wall.

This definition would apply to people in Russia, Eastern Europe, Philippines and South America – according to my experiences and that of many that I know. But this definition would definitely NOT apply to Taiwanese, especially young Taiwanese women. No way jose.

Another telling sign is that Taiwanese consider Americans to be more open and friendly than themselves are. This is odd though, because any honest aware person in America knows that people are VERY socially isolated there. In the real USA, people don’t know their neighbors, the social atmosphere is NOT inclusive, there is no sense of human connection or camaraderie, people don’t talk to strangers, and communication is usually business related. This is because America is a business culture where communication is generally for business and sales purposes only, and everything is VERY compartmentalized, including social interaction.

Yet in spite of this, Taiwanese think Americans are a lot more open and friendly than they are. This speaks volumes. I mean, to see an isolated disconnected culture like America as being more friendly and open than your own, means you must come from a really SUPER closed, cold and insular culture! LOL. In other words, if one thinks a cold place is warm, then one must come from an even colder place! LOL. Joking aside, I know that the image of America being very open and expressive probably comes from Hollywood films, but still, you get the idea. (The same goes for the Japanese view of Americans too)

The point is, I don’t think it’s right for people like Janet Hsieh and the politically correct people who act like her (as though nothing negative exists in the universe) to suppress or censor out the truth about Taiwan, just because it’s a taboo. Since when did politeness and positivity take a higher position than truth, honesty and free speech? It’s crazy. I don’t agree with it, and I think it’s wrong as well.

Truth should not be suppressed in the name of political correctness. If one can’t be honest, then one cannot be true. Suppressing one’s feelings is not healthy either. But political correctness does just that. It denies the truth and censors it. It puts pressure on people to conform in order to be accepted. Most young people have a need to fit in and be accepted. Some want to be popular too. So they conform to politically correct censorship over being honest and truthful. I don’t like that and don’t agree with that. This is my beef with them.

Yes I know that Janet Hsieh is a paid actor who hosts a travel show which is probably scripted, so that she may not be saying what she truly thinks about everything. But it’s a good bet that most of her personality does fit the role, so that she is being herself most of the time, otherwise she would not do well in her role. After all, actors have to identify with their role in some way to play their part successfully.

But most young people in real life do follow the law of political correctness and will say that “this culture is great, people are very friendly” everywhere they go, whether it is true or not, because that’s what they are EXPECTED to say. So what I say here about political correctness does apply to most young people, if not Janet Hsieh.

I don’t know about you, but I think it’s a sad society when people can’t be honest and speak the truth over fear of what others will think. What’s the point of the First Amendment guaranteeing freedom of speech if one is not allowed to be honest? See what I mean? I hope you see my point.

A Critical Review of Janet Hsieh 謝怡芬, Host of Fun Taiwan

20 May
Note: Due to complaints about the Chinese translation by Google Translate that I posted, I’ve removed it. If you wish to view it though, click here.

Revised June, 2011

“The men the American public admire most extravagantly are the most daring liars; the men they detest most violently are those who try to tell them the truth.” – H. L. Mencken

Janet Hsieh 謝怡芬, whom her shallow airheadish fans rave is “oh so wonderful”, is the host of “Fun Taiwan” on the Discovery Channel and The Learning Channel. On her show, she goes around Taiwan exploring mediocre sites and places that pale in comparison with her pretty face, while hyping them up with contrived enthusiasm. In doing so, she actually gives Taiwan a bad image, because the uneventful ordinary places she goes to on her show would NOT be fun if she wasn’t there, which might discourage people from going there.

Though she is nothing special, she has become a media darling and her airheadish fans treat her like some Goddess above criticism. Amazingly, she is one of the few celebrities without critical review, at least that I’m able to find. So let me be the first to write a critical review of her. (since I happen to have a history of being the first to do things)

First, sure she has good looks, has modeled before, and possesses an outgoing enthusiastic personality. I guess that’s enough to win over simple drooling guys and the executive producers of the Travel Channel.

But that’s pretty much all she has. There is nothing unique or special about her. She has not done anything to deserve any fame or “Goddess treatment”. There are many Asian American girls like her who could fill her shoes. And her accomplishments (qualifying for medical school, playing violin, etc.) are typical for Chinese Americans. (My Taiwanese cousins and family friends have the same accomplishments)

The chief problems with Janet Hsieh are: Her personality is bland. Her jokes are corny and her antics are cheesy. For example, when she puts on a dress, she says the corniest things that make you roll your eyes. And when she’s bathing under a waterfall, she raves, “Ohhh this is sooooo wonderful!” which anyone can do. Her cheesy lines, combined with how loud she is, makes her annoying to those with distinguishing ears. She does not give any deep meaningful insights on her show. Instead, she says the most simple things that anyone can say.

Plus she is not a good actor and seems to feign her emotions. There is no depth to her. Just look at her eyes (since they say that the eyes are the window to the soul). Notice how vacant and self-absorbed they are. They do not show one who is rich and soulful on the inside. Instead, they show an empty airhead on the inside. Look carefully at them when she’s on TV and you will see what I mean.

Thus, she is way overrated and over-treated, hyped up by the media without any substantive reasons, similar to how Britney Spears was hyped up even though she didn’t have much talent or charisma. Janet has no special accomplishments. She is not a good or talented actress. She does not make you feel emotions. She has no charm or charisma. She has not done anything special. She has not stood up to evil with any courage. She has done nothing but rave like an airhead on her show.

Thus, it is no surprise that her fans tend to be airheads themselves, since like attracts like. Just look at the comments on her facebook fan page that she gets everyday, and you’ll see how airheadish they are. None of the comments have any substance.

http://www.facebook.com/janethsiehonline

It’s no wonder she’s so popular. Deep intelligent aware people do not tend to be popular with the dumbed-down mainstream population (which is prevalent in Taiwan and America). That’s why popular people tend to be fake, dumbed-down (or at least act like it), plastic and inauthentic, rather than truthful and genuine. After all, as great thinkers have said:

“The men the American public admire most extravagantly are the most daring liars; the men they detest most violently are those who try to tell them the truth.” – H. L. Mencken

“Ninety-nine percent of the people in the world are fools, and the rest of us are in great danger of contagion.” – Thornton Wilder

“Whenever people agree with me I always feel I must be wrong.” — Oscar Wilde

Furthermore, the places that Janet Hsieh goes to in her Fun Taiwan series are very mediocre, the kind that old retired Taiwanese, who don’t have the guts to go overseas, go. They are not places that young people would really enjoy. Or she goes hiking up mountains and waterfalls in naturesque areas, which are nothing special and exist all over the world.

There is nothing really “fun” about these places on her show, except for her “fun personality”, which is more fake than authentic, because she makes a big deal about nothing and overcompliments everything around her. Now, there’s nothing wrong with having enthusiasm and child-like wonder, but when you’re PAID to do these things, it calls into question how much of your emotions on TV are real and how much is merely acting to make the show positive and pleasant.

You might think I’m being pessimistic and overly critical. But I am just calling it like I see it. I’ve seen many things in this world, and met thousands of people. I’m very insightful and have distinguishing taste in separating substance from hype. That being said, to me Janet Hsieh’s acting and enthusiasm on her show seems fake and contrived.

Plus she is not an independent thinker. She got good grades in school, played violin, and wanted to become a doctor, etc. which is very typical for a Taiwanese American. I’ve known many ABC’s who fit the same bill.

 


Sure, Janet has looks, popularity, money, and a fun life. She may be a great girl by conventional standards. But her assets and qualities are ordinary and shallow. She is not original in any way at all. She does not revolutionize anything or have great vision to change things, society and people’s lives. She does not help end suffering in the world, or fight evil or injustice, or debunk lies, propaganda and illusion. She does not even think “outside the box”, nor has she shown that she can. She is a conformist, like most females are.

She’s just an attractive but over-hyped entertainer that nerdy ABC sheep drool over. That’s nice yeah, but it’s only surface level, and nothing that will stand out in history.

Now I’m not saying that Janet is bad or anything. I’m sure she’s a fine person. I’m just saying that she’s nothing special or unique. I know many ABC girls that are just like her, who became doctors, got good grades, are pretty, etc. Her interests are typical and conventional. She is not extraordinary, original, unique or one-of-a-kind. She does not get compliments and comments like these, for example. Instead, she acts fake, artificial and annoying.

Look at the writing in her blog for example. There are no great profound truths or insights in it. Nothing intellectual or deep. Compare it to Winston Wu’s articles, which says speak for themselves. There is no comparison. Look at Winston’s masterpiece essay Debunking the Myth of Freedom and Democracy in America for example. Everything in it is 100 percent “outside the box”. Can Janet ever write anything like that? No way. Of course not. Janet is a typical conformist, not a truth seeker, and as such does not think like that.

Plus Janet’s personality seems fake and programmed, not authentic. Her updates on her Facebook Page, as well as the praises she receives there, are very airheadish and superficial. Notice her eyes as she speaks or walks, and you will see a plastic vacant look, as if she’s spaced out. There is nothing deep, intellectual or profound about her. She exudes plastic optimism, which is reflective of the fake US culture she grew up in, which does not allow you to express how you really feel, but only allows you to show a plastic face to everyone everyday. She is not known for anything unique which sets her apart from any other fun-loving extrovert. There is NOTHING original about her at all, compared to the one-of-a-kind Winston Wu, evidenced by these quotes.

Now compare her with fellow Taiwanese American Winston Wu – Writer, Traveler, Freethinker, Passive Income Enterpreneur, and Founder of the Happier Abroad and SCEPCOP movements. Very well traveled folks have called Winston Wu the “most atypical and unique Asian male” as well as the “most freethinking Asian”. See here for examples and see this Chart of Winston Wu’s character traits and attitudes that truly set him apart from other Asians. Also see this list of quotes from fans who call Winston Wu a “Hero, Inspiration, and Legend”, words which very few people in the world get called. Winston Wu’s work has even been praised by Nobel Prize Winners and reputable published authors. See here for their praises and compliments.

Janet Hsieh, on the other hand, has NOTHING like that which sets her apart from the rest. And she has not done anything that no one else has, or been the first to do something, like Winston Wu has. See here for his list of 10 Uncommon and Outstanding Accomplishments. No Nobel Prize Winners or intellectual authors praise Janet’s work. No one calls her a “Hero or Legend.” She has not overcome any insurmountable odds, has not stood up against overwhelming forces, nor fought for truth, nor had the courage to stand alone for what’s right. And she has no real intellectual achievements that are praiseworthy. There is nothing original or unique about her. All she did was study hard and use her looks to get into modeling and then onto television. There isn’t much substance to her. She simply got hyped up by the media, which has a history of hyping up people with looks but no substance, talent or charisma – such as Britney Spears.

 

 

Janet Hsieh claims to have toured 36 countries, however, anyone can backpack through a lot of countries in a short period of time. Darting through multiple countries on a backpacking tour does not make you cultured. What makes you cultured is how many countries you have resided in LONG-TERM. My Cultural and Expat Advisor, for example, has been to 30+ countries, speaks 10 languages, and has resided LONG-TERM in 9 countries. If you look at the depth of his blog and cultural comparisons, you will see what a real well-traveled cultured expat is like. NONE of Janet’s writings are anywhere near as deep and useful as his. Have a look at his Expat blog and see for yourself. In it are direct and mostly accurate comparisons between cultures and their ways, without political correctness. On the other hand, all that Janet can say about any culture is: “This culture is so wonderful. The food was so good. The people were so friendly. I had a great time! Wooo hooo!” which in fact, every host of the Travel Channel says. So what’s new?

Anyhow, with experience in other cultures, she should easily see that Taiwan is one of the dullest and coldest (socially) cultures in the world, with no social energy, vibe or excitement. (but of course she’s paid to say the opposite) It’s pretty much a dead land of robotic slaves without imagination, creativity or passion. Any well traveled observant person can see that from their perspective.

But since she’s a PAID host, actor and promoter of Taiwan tourism, she has to do whatever the producers want, including raving with enthusiasm about the most dull mediocre things. And when she does, it raises a critical eye from astute observers as to how sincere and natural she is.

I would bet that if she were not paid to host a TV show, she would not spend so much of her own time, years it seems, traveling around Taiwan with so much excitement. You can only see so much in Taiwan, since it’s a small country. Yet she’s spent years going to sites in Taiwan on her show.

What’s annoying is her rabid ranting that Taiwan is so wonderful and friendly which stands in stark contrast to the truth and cold hard reality of Taiwanese life. The way she rails about Taiwan is so fake too.

In reality Taiwanese women are very closed, stiff, inhibited, introverted, conservative, stone faced and not open to strangers. In Taiwan there is no eye contact or smiling to others in public. No one talks to you if they don’t know you. To them, that’s normal. But in the rest of the world it is not.

I know I’m going to take heat for this one, but it’s one of those things like “The Emperor’s New Clothes” where no one wants to admit something obvious for fear of condemnation and ostracization.

Taiwanese are not just shy and introverted, they are EXTREMELY shy and introverted, to the point where if you are outgoing, you will feel awkward and out of place, like you should not be outgoing when everyone else is not. Thus that part of you will feel “suppressed”.

The only types that talk to strangers in Taiwan are the elderly/senior citizens. Not young adults and especially not young adult females. No way. Hell no. The girls in Taiwan are super conservative, and not very approachable or easy to chat up without a proper introduction, unlike in Europe where females are far more open and relaxed with strangers. That makes Taiwan an ice cold place. And it tells you that since the older generation is more friendly, it must have been friendlier in the past.

However, I’m sure if you look like Janet Hsieh, then Taiwanese people will be a lot warmer and more approachable to you. Or if you are a white guy, then Taiwanese girls will be more receptive to approaches. But not if you’re an Asian guy. No way. If you are an Asian male, Taiwanese females will put on their super conservative mask to you. Not a single serious down-to-earth mature Taiwanese person I know denies that. It’s simply too obvious.

In fact, I do not sense any social energy at all in Taiwan, even though I am very sensitive and attuned to energy in my surroundings. Zilch. Nada. If you’ve never left Taiwan, you might not understand what that means. But if you’ve lived in high social energy places like Latin America, Russia, parts of Europe, the Philippines, Southeast Asia, etc. you will know exactly what I mean. Taiwan is a frigid place for the true extrovert. And it is nowhere as friendly in real life as Janet Hsieh portrays it. No way.

In fact, the name of her show “Fun Taiwan” is an oxymoron in terms. In reality, typical Taiwanese life is anything but fun. It is totally devoid of passion, interests, and freedoms. Instead, it is a cold bleak soulless robotic existence to corporate slavery (or slavery to your own shop) 6 or 7 days a week, giving away 80 to 90 percent of one’s priceless life to bondage, rather than enjoying any kind of truly RICH LIFE. Work and money are the Gods of Taiwanese people. It’s a horrible existence. I pity them.

What passes for fun in Taiwan is usually lame, gay, and a weak attempt behind an aura and culture of inhibition. People don’t truly live to the max or with full richness of heart and passion in Taiwan, the way that people do in Latin America for instance.

Mainstream Taiwanese do not deny any of the above. They admit to it and say that it is their culture, and that they are not like foreign countries. They even consider America, one of the loneliest and most isolating countries in the world, to be open and friendly. What does that tell you?!

The only people who deny the above are certain groups of expats who somehow claim to be unusually lucky in Taiwan’s social and dating scene, hippies and backpackers who always say that people are friendly in every culture no matter what, politically correct folks, and of course Travel Channel hosts like Janet Hsieh, who are PAID to say how wonderful, exciting and friendly Taiwan is.

But those who are unbrainwashed and who sees things as they are will find the above to be obvious. Few people will admit and see things as they are. Many only see what they WANT to see.

This is a sick world of illusion, propaganda and lies. And I’m glad to be one of the few who are free and liberated of that.

For my complete observations about Taiwan, click here

In fact, a Taiwanese girl I emailed, who told me that Taiwan was friendly because it was the popular cool thing to say, was sent my observations about Taiwan above. Upon reading it, she admitted that I WAS RIGHT! See what she had to say below. It’s quite revealing coming from a mainstream Taiwanese girl.
“hi, winston,
what a long letter! haha
actually, i admit i feel a little offended when i read ur mail first time…(sorry)
but then, i thought u r right. 😀
if we compare taiwan with other countries, i know, our people r colder and more shy. it is truth. i think it is because of our culture and tradition. we r not so welcome to strangers, just most people want to protect themselves first.
i totally agree u that people affect each other. so when your surrounding is a close space(people just chat or talk with their friends),u will be a member of them, no doubt.

but i still notice sth different between our sentences,
i think why u feel so disappointed about taiwanese,maybe one reason is just cuz of u r a male. people r usually more friendly to female than to male. 🙂
another reason is maybe u go to wrong place, for example,if on the road,maybe most people don’t want to talk to u because they r busy or they are teached don’t talk to strangers. but if u go to social places, like pubs,concerts,night markets,restaurants,shopping streets, etc. u might find sth a little different.
and i said that people in chiayi r kind and friendly,
i mean people who live in southern part of taiwan r more friendly than northern part of taiwan. 😀 (every taiwanese knows this.)
of course we can’t compare with USA,europe and other western countries i know… but heyhey i am very sure that we r better than china! 😀
so how is ur trip in taiwan? maybe u can try other couchsurfers!
enjoy!

Amber”

According to this news article, Janet’s show is now suffering from low ratings. Well the solution is simple. Go somewhere interesting Janet! Go to Japan or China and show places there, rather than always staying in the boring uneventful Taiwan.

Now, I know it may be unpopular to criticize someone as popular as Janet Hsieh, but as these great quotes exemplify:

“Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth.” – Gandhi

“The men the American public admire most extravagantly are the most daring liars; the men they detest most violently are those who try to tell them the truth.” – H. L. Mencken

“The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.”
– Friederich Nietzsche

Thank you for reading my critique.

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