Because it is my name! Because I cannot have another in my life! Because I lie and sign myself to lies! Because I am not worth the dust on the feet of them that hang! How may I live without my name? I have given you my soul; leave me my name!

There’s a call for papers currently out for a conference on altered states of consciousness going on at Duke university. I must say that I thought about submitting a paper, since altered states are what we have been enjoying lately as China Beijing continues to subvert signed agreements on the use of China Taipei vs Chinese Taipei. That’s Taiwan, the original altered state.

First, our mutant President, born without a spine, didn’t think anything was amiss with China violating its agreements:

Saying that Beijing had already made a concession in referring to Taiwan’s Olympic team as Zhonghua Taibei (中華台北, “Chinese Taipei”) within the arena of Olympic activities, the Presidential Office yesterday argued that it was not worth protesting or condemning Chinese state media for using an alternative title, Zhongguo Taibei (中國台北, “Taipei, China”).

China’s Taiwan Affairs Office said on Wednesday that the Beijing Organizing Committee of the Olympic Games would abide by the 1989 agreement signed in Hong Kong that Taiwan would be referred to as Zhonghua Taibei within the context of the Olympics, while the media would continue to call Taiwan Zhongguo Taibei.

It was not an attempt to denigrate Taiwan’s Olympic team, Beijing officials said, because it was a name commonly used by the media.

It is most certainly a way to denigrate Taiwan, and the agreement between Taiwan and China, signed in 1989, specifically forbids the media from using the term. Here’s the text from the post below:

“The participation in sports events, meetings, or activities by sports teams and sports organizations from the Taiwan area shall abide by the pertinent provisions of the International Olympic Committee. In all documents, manuals, letters sent, name tugs made, as well as broadcasts produced by the host (namely, the organizing entity), in so far as a sports team and sports organization from the Taiwan area is referred to in the Chinese language, it shall be “zhong hua tai bei (Chinese Taipei).”

In other words, the text agreement specifically names broadcasts. No weaseling out there! Ironically this agreement had to be inked because China would not abide by a previous agreement to use the proper phrase. China has now reneged on two agreements on this simple matter.

But don’t worry, the KMT can deal with China.

As of yesterday things were continuing in this vein, with CCTV offering Chinese Taipei in one story and China Taipei in another. Makes me glad for once that I live in Taiwan Taichung so I can make fun of ya’ll Chinese Taipeians — most of the time when I tell people in Taipei I live in Taichung they look at me as if I have a disfiguring skin disease that they are too polite to tell me about — or it’s “You came up from Taichung?” as if I had just flown in from Brazzaville or something, or there’s the inevitable ”Taichung? Yeah, I gotta get down there some time,” uttered in the same tone that says “Someday I’ll have to visit Machu Picchu.” But I have my revenge: you all live in China now.

Presidential Office Spokesman Wang was all over this one:

Wang said Beijing’s response to Taipei’s goodwill would depend on individual interpretations.

“We don’t think it is malice. Actually, we think it is a kind of goodwill,” Wang said. “I don’t think Beijing would feel good if we continue to gripe about this and complain about that, since they have changed their position from Zhongguo Taipei to Zhonghua Taipei within the context of the Olympics. I think that is an improvement.”

Wang said the Taiwan Affairs Office had explained on Wednesday that the name Zhongguo Taibei had “historic roots” and that the name was not being used just for the Beijing Olympics.

When asked whether the administration would lodge a protest or condemn the Chinese media’s use of Zhongguo Taibei, Wang said he did not see the necessity for such a response, adding that people had to understand the “historical background” of the title.

As Taiwan is a democracy, people are free to express different opinions, but whenever China makes any official announcement, it is carefully crafted and meaningful, Wang said.

Wang said he “felt the goodwill” extended by Beijing.

With the surname Wang comprising something like 10% of the Chinese population, yes, it’s true — there’s a Wang born every minute. Maybe they’ll put up another 1000 missiles and really, really, extend that goodwill.

Despite the goodwill flowing from Beijing like snake oil at a county fair, the government has considered pulling Taiwan’s team from the Olympics if the name game isn’t won by Taipei. Yeah, right. Meanwhile the DPP slammed the government:

Cheng said that the government’s response to the issue was illogical.

“Chinese Taipei has always been the bottom line for our name during international events. We are not happy about this, but we have to accept it. This is not something to be happy about,” Cheng said. “I do not understand why government officials are so delighted just because the Chinese government began calling us Chinese Taipei.”

Cheng said that instead of relying on the Chinese government’s “so-called” goodwill, the government should come up with a plan to avoid the nation being humiliated again during the Olympics.

“You cannot be careful enough about this,” Cheng said.

DPP Legislator Huang Wei-cher (黃偉哲) said that Beijing calling Taiwan “Chinese Taipei” had nothing to do with being friendly to Taiwan.

“They simply gave back what belonged to us. Why should we be happy about this?” Huang said.

I’ve got an idea: why don’t we call our team “Taiwan”? You know, a name that embraces the whole island……