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Giant 'Pig King' Gets Buddhist Funeral



WENZHOU - A few days ago a special Buddhist funeral ceremony was held in a temple at Taishun in Zhejiang province. But it was not a person being laid to rest, but rather a renowned "Pig King" from a nearby village, the Hunan online reported.

Dozens of villagers volunteered to clean the enormous pig before the temple ceremony, which included chanting for salvation according to the Buddhist rite. An ice box was urgently built to hold the cleaned-up corpse to prevent it from rotting before the villagers decided how the eventual funeral would be carried out.

According to the Chinese media, the nine-year-old swine measured 2.45 meters (8 ft) long, 1.25 meter (4 ft) tall, and weighed 1.1 ton when it died.

The story started in 2003 when Gao Shengtuo, a single old man, brought the pig home. At that time it weighed in at 45 Kg (99 lbs). He thought that he would sell it in a year or two to make some money. But somehow he grew fond of the pig and started treating the pig like his own child. "I feed him ginseng, deer antler liquor, cola, or rice alcohol, whatever I eat or drink," Goa told a reporter of Ku 6 web TV.

But apart from these unusual foods, the Pig King also had a particularly good appetite (see below video below for proof). As it grew bigger and bigger so did its appetite. At last Gao simply wasn't able to afford to maintain the beast anymore. As he had already refused many times to sell the pig to the butcher, the villagers donated money to help him send it into the care of a nearby temple.

But even the temple found it difficult to afford to feed this ever-hungry hog. Fortunately, by this time, the Pig King had become so famous that people from all over China, including China's state TV crews, came to report on it -- and village and the temple became tourist destinations.

The temple also put up a collection box outside the pig sty. Pretty soon the treatment became VIP class. The animal took rice for breakfast and a dinner of clean and fresh vegetables. And every morning at nine it enjoyed a few kilos of fruit.

After a few days of discussion about funeral arrangements, the villagers decided against the initial idea of putting the pig in a crystal glass coffin as being too costly. The next-best option was chosen instead: bury the Pig King and build a life-size statue as a memorial. Hopefully the tourists will still have their apetite.

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Milei Elected: Argentina Bets It All On "Anything Is Better Than This"

The radical libertarian Javier Milei confounded the polls to decisively win the second round of Argentina's presidential elections; now he must win over a nation that has voiced its disgust with the country's brand of politics as usual.

Photo of Javier Milei standing in front of his supporters

Javier Milei at a campaign rally

Eduardo van der Kooy


BUENOS AIRES — Two very clear messages were delivered by Argentine society with its second-round election of the libertarian politician Javier Milei as its next president.

The first was to say it was putting a definitive end to the Kirchner era, which began in 2003 with the presidency of the late Néstor Kirchner and lasted, in different forms, until last night.

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The second was to choose the possibility, if nothing else, of a future that allows Argentina to emerge from its longstanding state of prostration. It's a complicated bet, because the election of the candidate of Libertad Avanza (Liberty Advances) is so radical and may entail changes to the political system so big as to defy predictions right now.

This latter is the bigger of the two key consequences of the election, but the voters turning their back on the government of Cristina and Alberto Fernández and its putative successor, (the Economy minister) Sergio Massa, also carries historical significance. They could not have said a clearer No to that entrenched political clan. So much so that they decided to trust instead a man who emerged in 2021 as a member of parliament, with a weak party structure behind him and a territorial base no bigger than three mayors in the Argentine hinterland.

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