Hey, it's officially spring this weekend, and the Matsu procession kicks off this weekend.
MEDIA: US Admiral condemns China's 'aggressive' actions. FEER with an excellent piece on China's military towards Taiwan and beyond. Taipei County Deputy County chief steps down after affair with indigenous legislator. With election coming up, KMT wants no lingering scandals. No joint representation with China, says Ma. Taiwan FM says it will accept joint recognition to keep El Salvador. Trivia question: when did this happen before? It didn't matter -- Presidential Office immediately nixed the idea. Ma will do nothing to enhance Taiwan's sovereignty.
Maddog on the White Terror records and human remains discovered this week. The Dignified Rant on defeating Taiwan from within Talk of Asian Marketing hits department stores in Greater China Alison in Greece on the 2008 election here Every expat has the same idea: miniature golf. Someone actually did it. Michael the Bushman visits the Taipei Bike Show. So does Snarky Tofu. Rashomon at the National Palace Museum A US diplomat fetches his own cookies. Amazing and refreshing, says Asian onlooker. A-gu notes that Hu Jin-tao is back with the one country, two systems formula. That's supposed to be verboten here. Kuo Kuan-ying makes the people's daily. Letters from Taiwan rounds up polls showing the public doesn't support ECFA, CECA, SOS, or whatever you want to call it. Taiwanonymous has some very sharp claims on the LA Times article on lay offs here. Good work. Su Beng's biographer on a recent article on Su Beng's monumental work on Taiwan's history.
ECONOMY: China has its own surge on Taiwan, quoth Reuters as tourists rise 2,285 per day since February when the new push began. The Reuters article nicely contextualizes the China tourist push as anschluss-by-tourism. For some vague reason -- can't think why -- I don't think flooding the island with Chinese is going to win any Taiwanese hearts and minds. Ma save us! -- Polaris Securities says the economy will shrink 4.8% in 2009, with a 9% hit for the first quarter. The legislature stirs from its slumber to limit interest rates on late payments for credit cards. Rising flour prices, which had already killed many bakeries, were followed by the recession, closing 10% of remaining bakeries with more closings to come. How will we live without egg tarts and bo lo mien bao? Taiwan experiences record increases in cruise passengers as more and more Asian lines add Taiwan as a destination. Way cool: how the opening Arctic will affect China, from the Jamestown Foundation. Imagine -- a whole area of the earth's surface that humans have never fought major battles over. It practically cries out for a world war... Taiwan plans for one DRAM maker, ultimately, as this detailed look from Jon Adams says. Taiwan's farm exports surge 12% as bad news out of China made many buyers switch to Taiwan. Orders rise for TSMC due to China stimulus, sending workers back to work.
OPENINGS: Taipei Medical University has a new international masters program, in English. If you see it on my blog, please put my name on the application as the person who referred you. Applications close 4/30.
SPECIAL: It will never last, but it sure is fun to contemplate the thugs in Beijing getting their knickers in knots over it. SCMP reports:
Japan is reportedly planning to identify Taiwan as a sovereign state in a new foreign residency permit scheme to be introduced in 2012._______________________
If approved by Japan's parliament, the plan would almost certainly spark anger from Beijing, which views the recognition of Taiwan as a country as a diplomatic taboo.
Taiwan's Central News Agency quoted a report in the Sankei newspaper yesterday that the new residency permit would list "Taiwan" as the nationality of Taiwanese living in Japan. Under the existing visa system, Taiwanese are classified under "China" for their nationality.
The residency permit will be introduced in 2012 to replace the present visa system for foreigners staying in Japan for more than three months.
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