Sunday, May 15, 2005

Media Talks on the National Assembly Elections

The New Zealand Herald says that Taiwan rejects China offers as hopes for talks dim.
TAIPEI/BEIJING - Taiwan has rejected Chinese offers of economic sweeteners and a new formula to define current bilateral ties, dashing hopes for fresh talks between the rivals and prolonging a dangerous stalemate.

James Soong, head of Taiwan’s second-biggest opposition party, and Chinese President Hu Jintao proposed a "two sides, one China" formula on Thursday as a basis for talks between Beijing and an island it considers its own.

China also offered to ease employment for Taiwan residents on the mainland, simplify entry and exit procedures and reduce tuition fees for Taiwan students. The move came as Soong ended a nine-day visit, the latest in a string by opposition delegations.
Meanwhile, the Sunday Herald has two locals reporting that the
Taiwan poll defies China’s claim to rule, a rather strange interpretation.

As of 4:50 PM the Washington Post does not have an article up. Probably checking with Xinhua to see what they should say.

The Taipei Times reports correctly that DPP wins surprise victory in election,
Despite pouring rain and a record low turnout rate, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) managed a surprise victory against the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) in yesterday's National Assembly elections, earning 42.52 percent of the vote, compared to the KMT's 38.92 percent.

In addition, the Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) beat the People First Party (PFP) and became the third largest party for the first time in yesterday's election, gaining a support rate of 7.05 percent compared to the PFP's 6.11 percent.

Forgot to mention the rain before, but it was awful today.

The Washington Times, following the AP report, reads the outcome to say
Vote backs Taiwan's ruling party.
The result appeared to be vindication at home for Mr. Chen's independence-leaning policies, after recent visits to the mainland by two opposition leaders put him on the defensive and transformed yesterday's National Assembly election into a test of strength for his ruling party.
Fox News reports that Taiwan's Ruling Party Wins Elections, but follows the AP report.

The Beeb takes a less judgmental approach with Taiwan's Chen wins crucial vote.
Mr Chen will see the result as a vote of confidence in his policy towards China, says the BBC's Chris Hogg.

Beijing had tried to build support for anti-independence parties.

It invited opposition leaders to Beijing for historic talks in the run-up to the poll.

After the result, Vice-President Annette Lu congratulated the party and criticised China.

"I would like to thank the Chinese Communist Party, because each time there is pressure from China, the people show that democracy is what people embrace here in Taiwan," she said.
We love Annette Lu!

CNN taks its cue from the Rueters report Taiwan Chen's DPP wins most votes.
The poll was to elect an ad hoc, 300-member National Assembly to ratify constitutional amendments approved by parliament last year. But Taiwan-China ties dominated the agenda and the election was viewed as a vote of confidence on Chen's China policy.


rmdazwdv said...

"My observations lead me to the conclusion that Lu is mentally ill. I do not say that to get a laugh or as a roundabout way of saying I disagree with her. I mean that in an utterly serious, professional way. I came to the very distinct view that she has some mental problem that is clearly having an effect on her basic ability to function.

There is a standard book used by psychiatrists in diagnosing mental illness. The book is known as the DSM, which stands for The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Although I am not a forensic psychologist, my guess would be that, among other things, Miss Modest is suffering from DSM illness number 301.50 which is "Histrionic Personality Disorder," defined "as a pervasive pattern of excessive emotionality and attention seeking, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts...

Michael Turton said...

ROFL! I love Annette Lu. You know, she's just so entertaining.

Tim Maddog said...

Didja see the rest of the Annette Lu quote?:
- - -
"One billion three hundred million Chinese friends on the mainland and (Chinese) President Hu Jintao, you have heard the voice of Taiwan's people, Taiwan belongs to its 23 million people."
- - -

Bet the local pan-blue media didn't put that one on at the top of every hour, eh? No, all Sunday night it's been wall-to-wall Xia Yi.

Jonathan Benda said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jonathan Benda said...

The Xia Yi story certainly did overwhelm the political news. So did the story of the heavy rains and the destruction caused by them. But perhaps another reason for the relatively light coverage was the incredibly low voter turnout--only 23% (a figure the Taipei Times mentions in the seventh paragraph of its article, after it calls the DPP and KMT victories "a landslide"). I think the real question might concern why so few went out to vote. Perhaps it was apathy that won the real landslide victory.

Tim Maddog said...

"[L]andslide" is such an unfortunate metaphor for the Taipei Times to be using at a time when locals had just been killed by *real* landslides.

The media should have reported on their own apathy and failure to give people more information about the election. Click here, and scroll down to the "Mock the vote" subsection for more (written before the election) about some of the reasons I think the turnout was low.