Friday, March 20, 2009

蘇俊賓 Is No Good

It's interesting a lot of people seem to have expectation on 蘇俊賓. Those on TV or pan green general public seem to think him as a Taiwanese moderate KMT and a reformer. In another word, they think he is a "good guy." In the recent Kuo (郭冠英) event, 蘇俊賓 failed their expectation by not punishing his subordinate 郭冠英 and indeed let him go back to Canada with 1 month paid vacation.

It's obvious what 蘇俊賓 did is unacceptable. The interesting thing is a lot of people seem to think 蘇 would do the right thing. But for a very long time I am always very suspicious of this guy. My view on him can be found here:

Does KMT Have the Ability and Credibility to Uncover The Truth?

Hmm...sometimes I admire my own ability in observation lol. But seriously though I think a lot of Taiwanese, even the old and wise, are sometimes too simple and naive when facing someone like 蘇, who appears to be reasonable, but underneath he might be just the same as all those other KMT people.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

American Taiwan Policy Establishment Not Trust Worthy

Now I clearly find the AIT generally unreliable as an ally. Their way of thinking is very far from Taiwan's general opinion I think, and their view very different from me and many others in Taiwan. They forget that although the cross strait tension is easying, it costs Taiwan's sovereignty and human rights greatly. The tension and worries in Taiwan itself is rising, which in my opinion, might not be a bad thing for Taiwan, because more people need to wake up before Taiwan can progress further. But the US diplomats seem to ignore this fact, or pay little attention to Ma's ignorance on general public's opinions.

Again I sort of make this connection with the way they are thinking and the recent 郭冠英 incident. In the past most of Taiwan's official is like 郭冠英. Therefore there is little doubt that most of the American diplomatic establishment only has contact with this sort of people. Because those diplomats don't actually live in Taiwan, when they see Taiwan, they can only see through the scope created by people like 郭冠英. And when 郭冠英 has such as twisted view on Taiwan, I have little doubt that the American diplomat establishment's view is also twisted and far from Taiwan interests. I also suspect it's not just American, but indeed other nations that have close contact with Taiwan. The only exception is Japan, whose government is always very suspicious of KMT and more sympathetic to the TI cause. However, Japan unfortunately does not have a solid ground under their feet to support Taiwan or voice their opinion clearly on this issue, due to historical reasons. But again even in Japan I wonder how much influence do KMT have.

Looking back in history and we can see that this is not impossible. One thing KMT seems to be very good at, is lobbying in Washington. During WW2, Cold War, and I believe even today, they have strong presence in Washington that can effect the US decision, and this decision can be extremely disastrous to Taiwan, as the period right after WW2 shows. It's not if the US don't have lower level official in Taiwan, but it always appears to me that the US government trust those KMT lobbyist more than their own official, or perhaps their own lower level officials have no channel to the top to voice their view. Certainly I think that is the case during 228 era.

So here is my view on things. It's common sense but often get blurred by circumstances. The US in general is an ally and indeed a strong supporter of Taiwan due to TRA, but not everyone's view in the US is in Taiwan's interests, many are indeed against Taiwan interests in my opinion. What Taiwan needs is to counter those KMT lobbyists in public, government, and challenge strongly the US establishment thinking on Taiwan issue. Also, Taiwan is not without allies in the US. There are few in the US already doubting the US establishment thinking on the Taiwan issues.

This is also a head up to the Taiwanese. Many Taiwanese are disappointed of Chen administration's effort on TI of the past 8 years. But I think it's time they also realize that the situation is not as rosy as they thought. The difficulties Chen faced in the past 8 years can be clearly seen now. Although DPP formed the administration, a lot of officials are still people like 郭冠英, and the American establishment thinkers changed little. Chen admin has its fault but people also has to realize the difficulty they faced. The TI supporters were too optimistic when Chen won the presidential election. The lesson is that much effort are still required, and much road still need to be traveled, even if the DPP wins the presidential election.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Has Taiwanese Figure Out What They Want Yet?

I read this article a few days ago. Although the guy has some interesting points, but it's mainly about TRA, which is more on the US policy making side, and I did not find any particular statement that caught my attention. But today when I thought about it again, suddenly I find the last sentence very interesting:
Taiwan, he said, must reach an internal consensus on what it wants before any country, including the US, can help, he said.
It seems like a very common knowledge but the meaning behind it I find it interesting.

It looks to me that recently there are foreigners abandoning their support of TI. For the past years I have read or heard politicians from Canada, East Europe, Japan and the US expressing their disappointment. This, of course, is expected. When they are supporting the movement, the Taiwanese seem to abandon it during the 2008 election. Of course, many, including me, will argue that Ma during election actually only emphasis on economy and avoiding any topics involving China. He even gave his support to Tibet during that time, which of course is a lie because after election he refuse to let Dalai Lama to visit Taiwan. Also, many are simply blinded by the KMT attacks on ex-president Chen's corruption charges. Although I myself believe this argument but sometimes I also wonder about the naivety of Taiwanese. And of course those foreign TI supporters will feel a sense of being betrayed.

Now I actually realize the connection of these 2 things. Of course, many would like to help Taiwan if possible, the problem is: what exactly does Taiwanese want? It seems a lot of survey and data clearly indicate the desire of Taiwanese, but then during election, the result does not show it. It just shows that, a lot of people still don't realize the meaning of their vote or they do not have enough resolve to pursuit what they want. When this is the case, how can other help? Because the target is not even clear.

More and more Formosan seem to be gradually realizing their wish for TI and I hope this trend continue. And I hope more and more people see through KMT and CCP's deception.

Pacific Humpback Dolphins...Interesting.

Very interesting piece from Michael:'s funny I never knew much about the dolphins near Taiwan...actually there are some near my home town's coast as well.

Here is a video from near Taichung coast, you can see a few of them:

More info on Wiki:

The species are endangered now unfortunately, and more awareness and attention of their existence is required.

Donation on the effort lol:

Thoughts on The Constitution of Liberty So Far: Discussion of Freedom, Reason and Tradition

I am now reading another book by Hayek because I found his view to be very interesting.

And now when I am onto Chapter 4: Freedom, Reason, and Tradition, my mind are suddenly flooded with thoughts and ideas.

A lot of people in Taiwan, including me, think that Taiwan needs more importation of western ideas in the social and political area for further improvement. And indeed, I sense that quite some people are doing so. You can see the this in articles and talk shows etc. It's a healthy thing in my opinion.

But when I start reading that chapter I realize more clearly that, which western idea? There are many different ones and which one do I prefer? The book divide the 18th century European philosophers into 2 basic groups: empiricist and rationalist. It's too much to describe here what they are etc. But basically the author prefer empiricist's view and argue that they are the one that truly understand Liberty, and so far I agree and think his argument makes a lot of sense.

A lot of my thought relating to Taiwan starts to flood in when the chapter starts to talk about difference between empiricist and rationalist views on moral and tradition etc. This thought is quite a complex subject for me to write, and they are still disorganized. Perhaps I will sort it out more clearly later and write them down. But here I would just say they are related to the problem of Confucius philosophy and why I think they are problems, and comparing the western one with other eastern philosophy like Tou philosophy.

Another thing that flooded my mind is I think, as I am reading the chapter, that Taiwan's "peaceful revolution" and transition to democracy in the past decade actually resemble more closely to the empiricist view. This actually gives me more hope for Taiwan's future development.

Another interesting thing is one of leading figure of empiricist is Adam Smith (more famous for his work the Wealth of Nation), a Scottish moral philosopher (surprisingly not economist). I always thought this guy has a very keen observation when I was reading the Wealth of Nation, which I haven't finished reading because it's freaking thick. But definitely I might want to look more into this guy later if I have time. I think he has another book less known that actually talks about moral philosophy.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Another Problem That I have Known for Years

Here is another serious problem Taiwan has:

Sound ridiculous? But many, including me, have noticed these sort of problems for years. Even during the DPP times, a lot of these "envoy" are pro KMT and pro China tax money waster that just don't do their job properly. It's own envoy sided with China instead of Taiwan. It goes back to my concept of China Centric and Taiwan Centric thinking. But in the case it shows how extreme and damaging to Taiwan some of those so call "envoy" can be. IMO, they should be called Chinese envoy, and should receive payment from China, not from Taiwan. Plus his view is just wrong in terms of human rights and liberty.

It's another reason why Taiwan don't have much international space. Because many envoys out there are actually working and accomplish anything at all? I know only a few during DPP term, and now probably none because Ma's basic policy of ceasing any foreign relation activities.

UPDATE: After watching some follow up news on this just too ridiculous...This guy got paid by Taiwanese tax payers, work in Toronto, and yet this is how he thinks?? The stuff mention in the newspaper is just a small peak of the iceberg. He had wrote 100 or so articles full of hate toward Taiwan...It's just really weird. Also it's worth to note he got PROMOTED after Ma enter office...really make me speechless. I really wonder how many of these kind of foreign officials are there? By reading what they wrote, it's clear they cannot do any good for Taiwan. Doing more harm is more likely. Of course, freedom of expression should be protected, but if this guy don't believe what he is doing, he should just quit and find another job, or the government should just fire him because clearly he is not suitable for this job. Plus because he is a government official, his statement almost sounds like full treason or racism...but I think this only a qualified judge can decide. This guy really belong to China...not Taiwan. He should immigrate to China instead of getting paid by Taiwanese...

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Even More Stuff on ECFA(CECA)

It's very well written and once again confirm with a lot of experts' and people's suspicion and fear.

To answer my own question in the last post:
I think for the short term it's simple - continue to inform people about the "trap" and the "bait." Focus on the issue, common sense and the lack of transparency of Ma's ECFA policy. The best outcome would be people listen and get informed, thus stopping any further movement toward the trap. The worst outcome is, of course, continuation toward the trap. But hopefully by spreading proper information that alert people's attention, Taiwan will suffer great damage but not death.
For the long term - an alternative route out of this situation needs to be found. As stated before, China's strategy is to box in Taiwan and set a trap on the only exit. The US doesn't seem to recognize this, and still urge China to give Taiwan greater international space, which is a waste of breath, because that is exactly the opposite of what China wants, and China is not going to listen, of course. However, perhaps what Taiwan needs to do is to realize the box is not "solid," there are breaches and cracks that can be exploited with EFFORTS. The emphasis is on the "effort" because what Taiwanese needs to realize also is that there is no FREE LUNCH. The easy way out is a death trap, the hard ways out are the only ways that lead to life.

Interesting Conference

Interesting conference by the Shadow Government.

One quote especially caught my attention, I will translate it here in English:
"What China is doing is like blocking all the road, and leave only 1 exit, but right behind the exit is a trap."
This I think is the grand strategy of China. Strangle Taiwan in anyway it can but leave one exit, and set a trap right outside the exit. From the conference, it's quite clear that a lot of nations eventually didn't sign FTA with Taiwan due to strong pressure from China. Also, it keep luring Taiwan's business people to the dead end. Now China open 1 exit: CECA (or whatever it is called now) , and waiting for Taiwan to fall into the trap behind that exit...that's what I think is happening.

The important thing is, how does Taiwan counter this strategy, in short and long term.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

A New Flag Idea new flag concept for Taiwan. Yea, I am not satisfied with this design but I think it would be interesting to just keep posting some new ideals, because heck, there is no "official" flag for Taiwan now so might as well made up my own one.

This one I actually aggregated some concept from other, specifically the green, white, blue color scheme and the "4 hearts" idea. I actually didn't think about the meaning etc when I draw this so no...those stuff don't actually have meaning. But after I finish it and look at it I can sort of made the meaning up. The triangle pointing upward meaning the central mountain of Taiwan. It also means inspiration and imagination. The triangle pointing downward is the reflection of mountains on the water. It also means self-reflection and humility. The triangles point toward left and right...well, maybe they can mean the land of Taiwan, which also means prosperity. Blue can mean liberty and freedom, Green can mean happiness and white means justice. The idea, I will think of something later. Green, white and blue combined also means the color of Earth.

One thing I realized though is I particularly like the green, white and blue color scheme. It actually looks kind of nice. I am not sure why fewer flags use this color scheme. Maybe because it does not look very sharp from a distance...I am not sure.



The event described is a very good illustration of the KMT brain washing effect on some Taiwanese. Although Taiwan is a democratic nation, the authoritarian brain wash poison still lingers on in a lot of people's brain.

I think Taiwanese really need to import some of those classical liberalism literature from 18th century Europe as educational material, just to counter balance those authoritarian brain wash effect of the past.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Indian Hit The Spot

The Indian "ambassador" of Taiwan, T.P.Seeharam hits one of the problem Taiwan has right on the spot. It looks like India is giving the effort in trying to get more investment and trade with Taiwan. From a overall strategic point of view, it actually looks like Taiwan and India can be very good trading partner because the products and services they export don't overlap each other, but indeed seem to compliment each other. Taiwan exports more electronic and computer components etc, while the Indian exports more in software outsourcing and IT services. Both are involved in IT industry, but one is more in the hardware while the other is more on the software. Combining the expertise from both side might create even bigger business opportunities.

But why do Taiwanese business people, for years, seem to have not notice India one bit? My previous post seems to answer this question. It's because many people still have this China Centric thinking. And through KMT and pro-China media propaganda, those business people can only focus on the opportunity in China, and no other places. Like what the Indian ambassador and ex-ambassador said, this culture differences or language difference are just excuses. In fact, I think they are too polite...IMO they are BS. When you have potential opportunity to gain big money, can simple stuff like culture and language difference become a barrier? No way. They are just excuses for the Taiwanese business people's lack of imagination, laziness and China Centric thinking. Both India and Taiwan have plenty of people speaking English, finding translators etc won't be a big deal at all. Especially those bigger corporations in Taiwan...culture and language a barrier for them? Give me a break.

Those KMT idiots keep saying "don't lock down the country," when in fact they keep "locking" Taiwan down in China. KMT keeps saying Taiwan needs to be internationalized, Taiwan needs to have leaderships that have international view, when in fact KMT keep "sinolizing" Taiwan, and their leadership only has Chinese view, not international view.

Of course it can't be helped, how those people run their business is their own problem. But I do hope that Formosan realize there are a lot of other opportunities just around the corner. Taiwan does NOT need to rely on China, like those KMT propaganda say. Diversify, break the barriers and try new things, take some calculated risk, and the reward might be greater than expected.

Finally it might be said that, perhaps there is one common ground between Taiwan and India that stands out as another strategic benefits: both are democratic. Because of this, perhaps there are more common "cultural" characteristic India and Taiwan share than both side realized.

Who/What is Really Responsible for 228

Once again 228 came and went. This time I studied some more document of 228, and realize more monstrous acts of KMT and its soldiers. Of course, those acts should be condemned, but who is to blame for allowing these tragedy to happen...Here are the people that I thought responsible,...I might not be right though:
  1. KMT: Of course this one is obvious and a lot of people point it out already. Chiang Kai-shek and his KMT cronies are the primary source of the tragedy. From the start, they laid claim on an island which they know absolute nothing about, and use their lobyist army in Washington DC to convince the US and the rest of the Allies to support their claim. While the rest of the world intend to help rebuilding Taiwan after the war, KMT from the start only want to pillage. In such a way, can we not expect a rebellion and the eventual massacre?
  2. The USA Government: The US of course was not directed involved in this. But from the start, the higher ups of the US government are ignorant of the situation in Taiwan. The Chinese lobyists also have way too much influence in the US political circle. Some officials knew more about Taiwan, and knew the KMT is trying to deceive Washington, but their influence is not as strong as those Chinese lobyists, for some strange reason. In the US attempt to try to maintain as many allies as possible during and after the war, they ignore small people and their situations, and listen only to the lies of their so called "allies." Eventually, when McArthur gave the general order for the Chinese to take over and occupy Taiwan, he also set the stage for the massacre and seal the doom of Taiwan for generations to come.
  3. Taiwanese Illusion: You might think the US is foolish, but even Taiwanese are not much better. They think they are returning to the "motherland." They think KMT and Sun Yi-Seng's philosophy is the future of China. They are completely and utterly wrong. Their illusion about their own identity and about China are just tragic. But surely, there must be some Taiwanese who travelled to China before or during the can they not see this coming? Sometimes, I guess it just cannot be helped even if you see things right in front of your eyes, when the illusion and naivity ran deep. Their lack of forsight and imagination also caused their doom. If they have known better and are able to have some representative in the US or other places, perhaps they can avoid this fate. But's very difficult. Even if some of them knew about the danger, to have their voice heard by the rest of the world during that time is very difficult...and when you cannot expect everyone to awake from the illusion in so short amount of time, it's really hard to place to strong voice in the international stage.
  4. Japan: IMO, Japan is perhaps partially responsible for being "irresponsible," in a sense. They are the one that perhaps knew most of the potential problems that might come, but they say nothing. The only right thing they did was not ceding Taiwan back to China, but merely give up its soverignty over Taiwan. But they could have given the rest of the world and people in Taiwan a better warning. Then again, probably no one would have listened because they were the aggressor that invaded China and attacked Pearl Harbour during WW2 and they lost. Another thing is the last Japanese governer of Taiwan was apparently lure to Shanghai, imprisoned, and murdered by poison. It seems to show that KMT has the hostile intention toward Taiwan from the very beginning.
I think the lesson here is very obvious...Taiwan has to decide its own fate and voice its own opinion. No other power should and could decide for Taiwan. Their decision will most likely leads to disasters. But then again, Taiwan is a small nation, how can it not be influenced by other major powers? This is indeed a dilemma, which I have no concrete solution yet...but the alternative of letting others deciding our fate is not an option. So the question remains...

What's Taiwan's Grand Strategy? Part 2

(Continue from Part 1)

That's ignore whether those government of Taiwan in history are good or bad, short or long lived and what type and what origin etc. One thing seems consistent is that it's always political deceit, foolishness, betrayal that brought the political leaders to their tragic or humiliating end (some die, some flee) and leave the average people to suffer the consequences, in many instances for generations.

Of course, it's very clear that KMT has its own political agenda and ideology (unification). But they always disguised this in Economic issue, as if they are only concern about economy. Formosan have to see through these deception, and stand firm on the political issues. This is why I am writing this, to organize my thoughts somewhat on this issue. We all know most of the people don't want the grand strategy (unification) of KMT to succeed, but what is our grand strategy? What is our goal? We want to be independent, sure, but how? And what type of country could/should Taiwan become?

Just to Get One Issue Out of The Way: On China

To think of a "Grand Strategy", one thing that has to be recognize is that some people in Taiwan nowadays look to China for no particular reason whatsoever. For example, they often sided with Chinese government on some issues, finding excuses for the authoritarian regime. On the economy, they often look to China as the only way and the only economic future of this world. They keep focusing on the so called "cross straight relation." They have what I call "China Centric" view. This IMO is due to the long period, approximately 50 years, of brain washing and martial laws rule (silencing people therefore making KMT propaganda the only voice). Even today, some media and school are still brain washing our kids with "China Centric" view. To further prove my point, Michael's recent post ( shows that even back in the 1950 there are perhaps more percentage of Formosan aware of Taiwan's issues and in saw the problem with more clarity. Formosan today perhaps need to look in the past to find some new ideas for the future, and to establish what I call "Taiwan Centric" view.

Recognizing this, it's easy to realize that a lot of policy and arguments are just not necessary and irrational, because they are just China Centric. Those type of stuff does not really help Taiwan in anyway, because they are actually discussing China's future, not Taiwan's. It sounds so stupid and obvious for me to even put it here, but far too many times I see Formosan get distracted while discussing about Taiwan, and wasting their thoughts and breath on matters that concern only China and not Taiwan. Of course the political party like KMT seems to only see China and nothing else. It's like they are obsessed with China, like a horny teenager whose hormone has flooded the brain.

Granted, Chinese economy was booming and there are a lot of thing worthy of Formosan concern. But that does not mean we should look at the world from Beijing's point of view. Economic wise there are so many other possible opportunities out there (India, Brazil, SE Asia...etc), why do we focus only on China? The only advantage China offered is the common language (before it has cheap labor but now that does not count anymore because there are places with even cheaper ones). But is the language really that important, when it comes to foreign investment and trade? If Taiwan is to prosper, surely it cannot rely on only one language. Furthermore, putting all eggs in one basket is just risky. Diversification is still one of the basic investment maxim. Another problem is that...well, China's market is not actually "free." The state still has way too much control over it, and the lack of Rule of Law put business owner at risk because the government can bully them anytime. This type of bullying have happen many times before already, and I don't think it will stop anytime soon.

Finally, China still remains hostile toward Taiwan. I am not just talking about military hostility here. I am talking about their general intention and overall policy. It's well known that China always limits Taiwan's international space, uses military threat to limit Taiwan's options, and economic pressure to subdue Taiwan's spirit. They are the only country in this world that claims Taiwan as their territory. Therefore they remain an enemy of Taiwan. It's the unfortunate but simple truth. One day perhaps China will give up its claim and the hostility will seize to exist. Until that day, Taiwan still needs to remain vigilant, and there is no point of keeping focus on China.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Another Possible New Flag?

Just saw a possible new flag on Taiwanese SET news footage. It's waved by some pro-independence supporters of course, but I have no idea which organization they belong to.

In any case, I think it's actually not too bad a design, despite being very simple...which can actually be a very good thing. Also I check the current world flags and I don't think I see any that looks exactly the same as this this one can definitely be a possibility as well.

There also seems to be stuff written on top of the flag, but I can't see what it is...In any case, it looks like people are still inventing new ones...this is going to be interesting.

Thoughts After Reading Formosa Calling

After reading through the book "Formosa Calling"...I must say...228 and the events leading up to 228 is even worse than I thought. What those politicians and media talk about on TV or in the movie etc, are not the full extent of Taiwanese suffering during that time. Perhaps some of the stuff are so ugly it's very difficult to talk about it in public or media. Some of the people's fate in the book, IMO, is worse than death. Some of them die eventually as well, but I can imagine they have to suffer a lot physically and psychologically before they die. Furthermore, I don't know what kind of horror those eye witness of the torture and killings have to endure...Certainly I felt kind of in shock after reading some of the ugly crimes, and wondering what kind of suffering and humiliation those victims have to endure.

A lot of time people only focus on those victim that have some fame when they are killed (doctors, intellectual leaders etc) or the relatives of the victim that are still alive today, but judging from the book, I think there are a lot more nameless victims (young students etc) and families that could be completely wiped out...

Every time when someone mentioned 228, there are always someone saying "don't talk about it, it 'split us'...etc." IMO, those are just excuses. They are excuses to prevent people from gaining a lesson from the past. They are excuses to prevent us from seeing how ugly KMT and its soldiers were.

Most people only mourn of the 228 event, me included. But this time, I also felt a sense of anger...because a sense of lack of justice. It's not a hate or anger toward anyone in particular, and it's very difficult for me to put in words. "Lack of Justice" is the only feeling I can describe in words, but it does not describe it in full.

Perhaps this writer come closer in describe my feeling...but it's not exactly mine neither: