Should we be worried?

There have been a lot of announcements of resignations or terminations of heads of companies is due to sexual misconduct. I think I hear about one every few days now.

One wonders if these people, formerly highly respected and highly compensated individual’s are necessary evils? I can actually believe that every CEO in America has broken American laws unforgivablely. The stress of work, the excruciating need to think outside of the box and compete and perform, it really puts the brain in a less than cautious state. To lead a company, these leaders thend to have to exceed everyone in exuberance and performance, and that means they are conditioned to break rules and use loopholes and generally do to an extreme what other people avoid–include doing bad things and breaking the law.

Can’t these smartest business people figure out a righteous way to do sex? I thought they were highly respected and highly compensated for their intelligence and adaptibility and ability to think outside the box and take advantage of loopholes?? What else are they doing stupidly that we don’t know about?

I shudder to think of my former peers and leaders who both have kids and practice martial arts when I saw Vungle CEO being tossed in front of a judge for very bad sexual behavior with his son(including accusation of oral acts both person naked in their back yard… Said assertion made by said CEO’s own father). Although the case against him was dismissed on cultural grounds–that his martial arts has a culture of touching sexual organs, the move has a traditional name according to news articles,…(and certainly, Bruce Lee, an icon of a different Martial Arts, grabs crotch many times in his movies, though usually across very thick martial arts pants with hand and not direct is in contact with..I mention this because in the pop fictional literature of Lee’s culture (and also of his film career), the wuxia genre, eye gouging, groin groping and other extremely damaging moves are described with words like dark, shadow, poison, all conoting evilness and taboo, like jackknife and twicing, definitely not used by anybody who have any respectable skills, …, except, real live masters of the art sometimes win with them. But I digress about why you shouldn’t find what I imagine so incredulous in the world where the metal meets the pedal and burnning rubber so to speak in work-place and business competitions, the masters of business grope and gouge, and literally make evil moves at home as well…) …I still cannot shake the image of people in my work place and their private homes… It’s hard to keep imagination at bay when your coworkers are all so perfect and derserving of their leadership accomplishments, considering what exordinarities they have made or practice in their home and family while achieving.

Imagination and cultural and historical deviances aside, I wonder of we should let up on this sexual relations thing. Maybe Americans can be more tollerant of sexual behaviors. Better it be public abberations than private deviances. I have floating in my head these movie clips of French men and women swooning about former lovers, escapades, romps, affairs, flings, encounters, longings, memories, smiles, flowers, tenderness and all of that–with feeling, praising their live experiences even though the relationship may eventually ended in sad separation, infedelity or worse… There are place in the world where people celebrate this aspect of humanity. There are people, there whole People, who speak, think and act of sex not in distain and minimizing. But in America today, all you hear is sex is competition, sex is bad, and bad people have sex.

But it may take a long time to get there here, but the right way forward is more righteous and happy sex. And yes, more democratized sex: less sexual inequality, in the sense of less wealth inequality. (imho)

Sex is a good thing.

Sex is a good thing in America too.

Let us also celebrate sex in America!

America is so much more than the tired, the poor, and the huddled masses yearning to breathe free.

Let’s make America greater again!

But we do not condone breaking the law by harassing or raping another person sexually. Those who break the law should be caught and punished by law and corporate governance.

Equality of Utility II

Some time ago we investigated the equality of benefits. Roughly speaking let us consider degenerate real world actions into discretely selectable choices of action a\in A given individual x, who has observable features f(x) and protected feature p(x). Suppose the company has to choose among a set of actions to take a \in A. What is a workable definite of fairness or equality in such a decision making effort with respect to protected properties p?

Let god bestow us, a neutral third party, with a utility functor u whose evaluation on the individual u(x) results in a function u(x)(a) is the utility of company taking action a to individual x, u(x)(b) is the utility to individual x of company taking action b.
Let f be the decision process of company g, g(x) is the decision company makes, some a for the individual x. Then the right thing to do
g(f(x)) = argmax_{a\in A}(u(x)(a)) = g(f(x), p(x))
Simple, we do as god says, act as if we have the knowledge of an oracle–even when knowing some discriminable information that we then chose to ignore.

This is not as easy as it looks in a formula. Think of a person with a clown nose and one without, your behavior will likely be very different between those two persons, even if you decide that a clown nose has absolutely nothing to do with the task at hand.

Additionally, the nature of our imperfection dictates that our systems that we build are imperfect. What if we cannot achieve God’s will? What if we fail to do the virtuous even when we know what the right thing to do is?

What could a neutral thirdparty reasonably demand of a faulty company? One suggested approach is to establish probabilistic equality among protected classes. Suppose there are some number of classes, m\in M which corresponds to values of p(x), between which we must protect their utility. (So for example M could be cartesian product of age, sex, race, birthplace, religion and political party)

E(u(x)(g(f(a)))| m) = c\ \forall m\in M

That the customer utility for each class is identically some value c. This is a simplification as there are other classes of equivalence in stochastic variables.

Note this framework has some slight benefit over traditional machine learning framework evaluating equality on confusion matrix of classifier performance g. There two most inspiring examples that I suffer from:

Situation 1: I noticed that my coworker was getting Tesla car advertisements while I do not receive one. Even though my utility in not receiving the advertisement was a negligibly loss–because I cannot afford a tesla, I still feel angry. I may even be tempted to find a protected attribute of mine to claim that tesla discriminated against me in its advertisement campaign: What! they think mid-aged Asian man can’t have a midlife crisis or can’t afford to splurge on a Tesla? In this case a true negative for prediction regarding response/conversion through a Tesla car Ad but offensive enough to cause problems. In retrospect this would have had positive utility for me, when I reached out to Tesla I learned more about how the car would work for me. But the decision seem to produce a negative sentiment from its subject.(The company has, since my drafting of this blog entry, sent me repeated invitation to test drive the S, perhaps due to recent but small increase in my disposable cash, which I may consider calling upon by taking the offer to test drive, at a suitable time. this is just an example)

Situation 2: I am offended when I do receive an advertisement for STD testing, and in particular for hepatitis family of diseases. For gods sake, there’s a Asian Liver Center at Stanford whose purpose for establishment is to check me for hepatitis or other Liver problems present in Asian livers. In this case, god bless me, that I am free of hepatitis and other liver problems of any kind, and that this is a false positive in advertising. I am offended. And in reality one may argue that the benefit of this advertisement, to me, to increase my chances of early detection is positive–E(u(huan)g(f(huan)))>0 I still feel offended. This case is a false positive to advertisement conversion. It is a positive utility to have shown it to me. And yet it produced negative sentiment.

Situation 3: I just received a piece of snail mail from a Redwood City mortuary advertising their service to Mr. And Mrs. Chang. I am terrified. I feel this is a death threat of some form. Putting the idea of me dying in Redwood City in my head. The letter has hand addressed envelope. This is a false positive for advertising relevance(I did not die, not yet any ways, and I am not planning on dying) it has zero utility for me, and I am definitely feeling very negative sentiment.

These are but several of many possible situations where the company could do the right thing in front of God, and in front of the board, by still be erring and thereby producing very negative sentiment. At risk of running out of numbers to enumerate all of them, I have not numbered all the types starting at 1.

To summarize, there are several factors that ultimately factor into a company’s decision making process, nonexclusively they are:

  • The E.u.g.f for x, whether it is defensible in front of an oracle, God, or court of law;
  • how will any action make the subject individual feel, the sentiment it produces, irrespective of objective utility;
  • is utility function universally accepted;
  • and finally the company’s bottom line.

With these considerations in mind, we can now continue with our exploration of fairness.


That’s my new Caffeine Name (like porno star name , but for ordering at places like Starbucks)

Rack it up to being Chinese-American in the 21st Century America.

This was the Starbucks in Palo Alto where more than half of the customers are Asian. I mean I really should be upset, indignant and filing complaints with HQ like I usually do,…. and I never smoke weed,…. but all I can do is giggle like my little girl does right now at the sight of this on my cup of iced decaf Americano. Serves me right for ordering that anyway.


This is so good, we need to make it a spectator sport. I will make big mullah if I can some how capture these moments of genuine genius, and the follow-up interactions or reactions, for reproduction, enmass to masses, later.

That’d be something you’d be interested in observing, wouldn’t it?

P.s. full disclosure, I hold an investment position in Starbucks. There has been less than quarter a dozen wild, deep ocean, Caffeine Names that I caught worthy of FAM blogs in many years, imho. (For example, just found a picture of Bahn)