A DPP banner is carried through the streets to the 2-28 rally at Chungshan Soccer Stadium in Taipei.

The election season is finally getting into full swing for the DPP, kicked off by the 2-28 rally in Taipei. Look for more intensive campaigning by the DPP to overcome the KMT’s massive election advantage — everyone I’ve talked to, all over the island, says the same thing: Ma will win. For those of you cataloguing DPP eff-ups, I spoke with a former member of the government’s Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) process, who told me that the DPP has approved new coal fired power plants and other projects that will raise our island’s carbon output by over 40%. There’s a reason so many former supporters are angered at the DPP….

Meanwhile, out on the blogs, there’s plenty of passion and energy too…

  • Jerome Keating writes on Ma’s shallow and simplistic economy promises. Let’s not forget — if this program is so great, why hasn’t Ma carried out using the legislature, which his party controls?
  • Global Voices Online links to the Taiwan Hope Map Project.
  • Sponge Bear visits the recent court judgment against China Airlines in connection with the 2003 incident in Japan.
  • Taiwan Air Blog travels with an international U-2 aircraft expert.
  • A-gu has a nice rundown of the change in the Hsieh camp’s strategy. Many people have noted how much savvier the KMT campaign is being handled this time around.
  • Todd has some superb photos from the 2-28 rally, along with links to other photosets and blog posts. David has a set from the 2-28 Peace Park.
  • The Conductor is conducting the Hsinchu Philharmonic!
  • Travels goes to another beautiful place in Taiwan.
  • Taiwan has been conducting a campaign to get people to scoop up after their dogs — I saw a cute ad on the metro while waiting for the train the other day — and Islaformosa finds a funny poster.
  • MEDIA: The NYTimes has covered Taipei, but the Japanese are visiting Nantou. Taiwan, Oz ink US$48 billion natural gas deal. I guess I’d be more impressed with the size of the deal if the US dollar wasn’t moving into the lira range. Although the Hsieh campaign has proved almost impossible for the foreign media to gain access to, Taiwan Review has an interview with Hsieh in English, though judging from the format, it appears that the questions were submitted in writing. The current issue has some articles on the election, and an article on the city where I live, Taichung. The US Congress passed a resolution supporting Taiwan’s democratic election, something firmly opposed to by Ma Ying-jeou’s pals in Beijing, according to Xinhua. The Jamestown Foundation has several pieces on the Chinese military this month, including this one on modernization. I’m not blogging on the craven behavior of the UK in China this week. Revolting.

    HIGHWAY 11: New issue online.

    KOSOVO = TAIWAN: The National Interest has a response from Beijing on the real lesson of Kosovo for China. The editor more or less bluntly states that if you don’t threaten to murder people, you can’t stop them from attaining their freedom. An Indian scholar comments negatively on the Kosovo independence mess.