Plant Based Diet?

This Netflix documentary “The Game Changers” makes a very compelling case why switching to a vegetarian diet is good for general health, sports performance and recovery, and even the environment.

The evidence presented throughout the documentary makes a compelling case as to why a plant based diet is significantly better.  Some of the people promoting the rationale as to why plant diet is better include…

  • Blood test of subjects that ate meat one meal, then plant based the following day.
  • Firefighters on a 1 week program with average cholesterol drop by 20 and average weight loss of 6 pounds.
  • Weightlifters (Schwarzenegger), football players (select players from Titans), Olympians (a American track cyclist, Australia sprinter)
  • Doctors and specialists who talk about the evidence (of course!)

I have to admit… what the documentary is saying is pretty convincing.  But what about a diet full of fruits and plants compared to just plants only?

The K2

So I heard of the Korean drama called The K2 because of my Google news feed on Yoona. Yes, the Yoona from Girls Generation.   This girl group was my first foray into the Kpop.  Specifically, after I heard Gee, I’ve been a fan of their music.  I mean… with such an up-beat tune it’s easy to love the song.  Then you have other fun upbeat songs like Vitamin, Dancing Queen, Mr. Taxi, Genie… ok… you get the picture.

I will also admit that Netflix has been importing quite a lot of Kdramas to US.  I’ve watched my fair share of these dramas to know that they are much more riveting than the single episodic US TV dramas.  I think one of the main issues with US dramas compared to foreign dramas are the fact that the US storylines are all contained within one single episode.  I don’t need know what happened in the past episodes to know what is going on in the current one.  Seriously… do these TV production people think we’re stupid that we can’t follow the plot line through multiple episodes?

Look at Game of Thrones?  Part of it’s popularity is the fact that each season is one long story arc that seemingly ties many plots intricately together at some point during its 8 seasons.

American Factory

This Netflix documentary about a Chinese glass manufacturer Fuyao Glass opening up a factory in US is fascinating.  Aside from the “alternative translations” peppered throughout the documentary, it’s a socio-economic lesson about the various forces at work in a manufacturing setting.

To start, Fuyao took over an old GM manufacturing plant in Dayton, OH that closed during the great recession.  If you recall, the great recession hit the car industry pretty hard.  It forced car manufacturers to lay off workers which caused a ripple effect that affected many communities that supported the automotive industry (think tires, leather/tannery, carpeting, electronics, and other smaller car parts manufacturing) as well as the workers (think restaurants, hair salons, grocery stores, and places to spend discretionary income).  Unfortunately, many of these manufacturing sites were also located in the Midwest due to the close proximity to Detroit, MI.  After all, Detroit is the “car capital of the world.”  The situation was so dire that the US goverment did negotiated a deal to bailout the car makers.  If you’re interested in some more reading, try this link or this link.

But this documentary is fascinating to me because it tries to present this factory from both the Chinese management perspective and the American workers/middle management perspective.  If you strictly look at the two perspectives, there’s definitely a cultural clash between the Chinese and Americans.

There are a few scenes about the documentary that I thought was interesting to point out…

  • In one scene where the management workers were wondering if American’s can work overtime… and the room erupted in laughter.  I assume the assumption was that you couldn’t get the American’s to work overtime without more pay.  In China, the workers work 12 hours shifts and through the weekend.  Part of what makes China such an enticing place to set up manufacturing shop is the work “ethic” (I can’t think of a better word).  Given how pay is much lower than the average American pay, one can see why China has become the manufacturing country of the world.  What do you think will happen if the Chinese government starts mandating certain expectations of working hours and pay?  
  • A scene where an American worker commented how he saw a Chinese worker dump chemicals into the drain and acting as if the laws didn’t apply to them.
  • In another scene, a conversation between an American supervisor and a Chinese counterpart really highlighted another difference that working only 8 hours per shift is an ingrained work culture from. 
  • Finally someone had made a comment that the difference between American workers and Chinese workers was that American’s only care about the pay.  I don’t know if that’s true.  In China, many Chinese workers are leaving their homes and taking these manufacturing jobs because the pay and opportunities are better.  Many leave their families behind for this opportunity knowing that a better life comes from better pay.  Is that not a reason as to why Americans work?  They find jobs where they get better pay.  I don’t know if the Chinese manufacturing workers find their jobs any more meaningful than American manufacturing workers.  Furthermore, I think any worker will gravitate to jobs that pay more.  So I don’t think the comment is accurate.

This last scene however got me to think about how satisfying Maslow’s Heirarchy of Needs is a factor that companies need to consider when it comes to employee satisfaction.  How you meet these needs is as important as what these needs are… because everyone has needs they need to be met.

Chief of Staff

This Netflix Korean drama called Chief of Staff is awesome.  This is a political drama like House of Cards but from the point of view the Doug Stamper who was Underwood’s Chief of Staff.  This show is rife with moral, ethical and political dilemmas along with intrigue, blackmail and backstabbing.  All the while, classical music play in the background at critical moments to build.

Why aren’t US shows this engaging?


Knock Down the House

Before Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, there was a group of activists called Justice Democrats who were looking for promising candidates that could primary Democratic incumbents in Congress.  They are looking for change.

The film crew recorded many of the scenes prior to the 2018 elections including interviews with the candidates and their opinions.  By showcasing the candidates, Netflix’s Knock Down the House is one of the most interesting behind the scenes political documentary.  I think the best quote from the documentary was “after 2016, nothing is for certain.”

This documentary really shines a light on the Ocasio-Cortez as a “rising star” and her opinions and activities going into the primary.  It’s fascinating.




The Office

Have you heard of a small NBC show called The Office? It’s a comedy show disguised as a documentary series.  It’s also one of those highly acclaimed shows that people talk about all the time.

Well… I finally finished this on Netflix six years after it’s season finale.  I found the earlier seasons to be funnier with the pranks between Jim and Dwight.  The hilarity in later seasons weren’t as good.  However there was one particular gem of a prank in later seasons: “Asian Jim.”  I think Asian Jim was the best one ever in that it exploited the cognitive dissonance in Dwight.