The View from Taiwan

Commentary from Taichung - Taiwan

Entries for May, 2008

DPP Statement on Wu-Hu Lovefest

Xuenfang Battery in Tainan, on Guanghua Street, now enclosed in the grounds of a Buddhist nunnery.
The DPP came out with a statement on Saturday morning saying that the Wu-Hu talks had inflicted “five major wounds” on Taiwan:
Harming Taiwan’s democracy by regressing the pattern of cross-strait negotiations back before even the October 1992 semi-public SEF-ARATS talks [...]

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How the Blue Media Works

A friend of mine flipped me this photo above of a Little Blue Truck taking on gas at a gas station. Except that the gas isn’t going into a truck, but into this gigantic plastic tank. No safety issues here with our gigantic Molotov cocktail!
Speaking of gasoline, Maddog at Taiwan Matters! picked up this fantastic [...]

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Ming Vases and Media Places

Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong, abusing westerners for their propensity to take China’s feelings seriously, once observed that China was different: it had to be treated like a Ming vase. No better example can be found than the Bush Adminstration’s treatment of China:
The U.S. ambassador to China, Clark T. “Sandy” Randt, [...]

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Taiwan News: Wu gives away Taiwan

Taiwan News has another hard hitting editorial, this time on how KMT Chairman Wu Po-hsiung has sold out the island and its vision of pluralistic democracy:
In the midst of the storm over Tuesday’s lightening hike in petroleum prices by the new Kuomintang government, virtually all of our citizens have failed to notice that the [...]

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Infrastructure Dust Up

A struggle is brewing over regional disparities in funding. It seems that the central government’s plan is to “stress the north, ignore the south” and southern politicians are deeply unhappy:
Kaohsiung County Magistrate Yang Chiu-hsing proposed the central government Tuesday take into account each administrative district’s size, in addition to their population, when allocating state funds [...]

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SCMP Commentary on Ma

And now for something completely different: I got flipped a version of Michael Fahey’s commentary in the South China Morning Post, and a version of that now appears here. Compare this to the two pieces in the post below this one:
Taiwan’s conservative new president Ma Ying-jeou began his term with burst of symbolic activity and [...]

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Two Views of Ma

I believe in equality for everyone, except reporters and photographers. – Gandhi
The international media came out with two views of Ma this week that make a startling contrast. One in Forbes refers to Ma’s past in the KMT party-state, rare for a piece in the international media. The other, from Tom Plate at AsiaMedia, discusses [...]

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Net Nannied!

So there I was, like any red-blooded American male, running my daily searches on guns, booze, drugs, and porn, when suddenly Chungahwa Telecom’s net nanny swooped in to save me from my dark side. My screen turned Aqua and I was presented with the net nanny warning — in the form of an angel, an [...]

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"Both sides are tied by blood…"

“Signs of warming ties” is how the international media defines KMT Chairman Wu Po-hsiung’s current visit to China. Reuters reports:
China and Taiwan edged closer to a resumption of fence-mending talks on Tuesday when the chairman of the island’s ruling party echoed the Chinese line that both sides are part of a single nation.
China, which has [...]

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AmCham’s New White Paper

The American Chamber of Commerce in Taipei has just released its annual White Paper full of advice for the government (White Paper). Their press release notes:
In the Overview section, entitled “Getting Down to Business,” the Chamber notes that the new administration is starting its term amid high hopes and expectations, but that it now faces [...]

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Kaohsiung MRT bikes

The new Kaohsiung MRT has a new bike to go with it.
The Kaohsiung Rapid Transit Corp. (KRTC) launched its first folding bike produced under trademark license, as prototype for a future metro souvenir model, according to KRTC General Manager Fan Chen-po Tuesday.
Fan said the new bike comes in the color white, weighs 12.9 kg, has [...]

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Patterns in the international media

From the moment of my birthTo the instant of my death,There are patterns I must followJust as I must breathe each breath.Like a rat in a mazeThe path before me lies,And the pattern never altersUntil the rat dies.There’s a clearly discernible pattern in the way the international media views Taiwan. In the western media, characterized [...]

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More on the "Chinese People"

A-gu over at That’s Impossible! had another great catch today with the words of KMT Chairman Wu Po-hsiung as he greeted Chinese officials on his “historic” trip to China.
After some pro-forma remarks about the Sichuan quake, Wu then observed that “the two sides of the Strait belong to the Chinese [ethnic] people.” A-gu opines that [...]

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Diane Lee and US Citizenship

The Diane Lee (李慶安) case broke last week when a local tabloid, Next magazine, reported that Lee, a prominent KMT legislator, had US citizenship. It is illegal for ROC elected officials to hold office while being a citizen of another country, so Lee was immediately threatened with the loss of her seat in Taipei city’s [...]

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Paper on Parade: Cigarettes and Betel Nut in Taiwan

I don’t smoke and I don’t chew betel nut, so this week I am looking at new territory for myself, the work of a group of academics led by C. P. Wen at the National Health Research Institutes in Taipei on the relationship between betel nut use and cigarette market opening in Taiwan: Paradoxical increase [...]

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