ESWN left this on his blog a few days ago. There’s no link….

[Administrative Note] Someone out there does not like what I have to say about Taiwan. Well, much of what appears on ESWN about Taiwan is directly translated from publications such as Apple Daily and The Journalist. I don’t personally agree with what they have to say. In fact, I am often annoyed and disturbed, but I cannot pretend that they don’t exist. I note that the English-only reader can only access western media, China Post, Taipei Times and Taiwan News, and that is hardly representative of what appears in the Chinese-language media. I translate from Apple Daily because it is the single most popular newspaper in Taiwan right now. There is no point in rebutting this or that story on the details or the reasoning. The real deal is to explain why such stories should be so well received by the people of Taiwan. This is what they want to read and I, for one, do not like where this is going and I want you to think about how this came about. You should ought to figure out why this is happening.

ESWN, the real question is not “Why is this happening?” — for as it has been observed since at least the time of Plato, the great mass of people seem to prefer crap — but the far more urgent “Whose interests does crap analysis serve?” That is, ultimately, why analyzing crap is so useful. It throws light on the way power distorts the presentation of information in society. It lets me know where writers, thinkers, and the media stand. That is why I and other Taiwan bloggers will continue to rip apart the trash that passes for political analysis, particularly among the pro-Blues, here in Taiwan, and the uninformed tripe that AP, Reuters, and other western news media typically put out. Besides, it’s just plain good fun.

BTW, regarding your comments on the accusations by a PFP legislator, Liu Wen-hsiung (劉文雄), that the Ministry of Transportation spent a ton of $ to prepare for the visit of the President:

The instant Apple Daily public opinion poll of 408 respondents found 81% think that this was a waste, 10% think it is not and 9% with no opinion. On most issues, opinions tend to fall along party lines. But this case as presented is so egregious that it is difficult to imagine what the 10% is thinking.

Maybe that 10% represents people with critical thinking abilities. (1) Liu provided no evidence for his claims.(2) Liu is from the PFP, a party that is anti-Chen and has some very serious corruption problems, and (3) Liu has a history of making absurd accusations — last year he accused Chen Shui-bian of bribing the former President of Panama to the tune of $1 million and the former Panamanian President retaliated by threatening to sue him. All in all, I bet the 10% here have a better grip on things than the 81%.