Saturday, December 20, 2014

More Chu joy: Chu's Ancestral House Renovated by Taoyuan Culture Bureau

My friend Iris shoots a mountain road.

Business as usual: translates/writes on how the Taoyuan County culture bureau hurriedly signed $NT 30 million in contracts to renovate incoming KMT Chairman Eric Chu's ancestral home as a cultural/historic site, before the DPP could get in and stop the silliness. What a coincidence! It was declared to be a historic when Chu was the County Chief. Chu is a reformer? This is business as usual, in which high-ranking KMTers treat the government and the nation as a combination ATM and game preserve. From the piece:
Councilor Huang Ching-hsi pointed out that not only was the villa was named a historic site when Chu was county magistrate; it is the estate of Chu’s grandmother’s family. If the government “has too much money,” it could instead renovate county-owned historic buildings, like the Japanese-style police dormitories, Huang suggested.

The cultural bureau’s rush to finish refurbishment tendering procedures before the county is promoted to a special municipality is inappropriate and aimed at making everyone feel that “the rice has already been cooked” [what’s done is done], Huang said. “Not only is the bureau slapping the buttocks of Eric Chu’s horse; it’s making Chu look unethical.”
Too right. Not only does it make Chu look bad -- and Chu should have stopped it -- but it also shows the way the KMT has distorted Taiwan history by making it, not a history of things that happened in Taiwan, but a history of things that the Han did in Taiwan. This anti-Japanese approach to history is also slowly erasing Japan in Taiwan. All over Taiwan Japanese-era buildings rot, with no one to preserve their tales. Sad.
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Raj said...

"Like those retiring Soryus, for example."

Michael, there are no retiring Soryus. They're a brand new class of submarine for the MSDF!

Raj said...

Oh, and there's no chance in hell that Japan would sell Soryus to Taiwan. Pissing off China is an obvious one, that's a top piece of kit and Tokyo has bad enough relations with Abe's mandatory offerings to Yasukuni. Doesn't matter if you say China deliberately takes offence, it's still a boneheaded thing to do.

Taiwan has to go domestic with the submarines. It will be possible to get outside help but they will have to be largely Taiwanese designed. Just suck the cost up, the time it will take and the fact they'll be imperfect. You have to start somewhere.

Raj said...

Oh, and there's the issue of security. Japan couldn't trust Taiwan with Soryu's even a 5% chance of technical info being linked to China would be too high.

Michael Turton said...

Argh. For some reason got Oyashio and Soryu confused.

Raj said...

Oyashio isn't being retired terribly quickly, as the Japanese want to expand their fleet, so Taiwan would still have to wait a long time to get more than one or two, even if they would sell them.

Also it's still a very good submarine. You'd have to go back to something like the Yushio-class (the class before the class before the Oyashio) for the Japanese to be comfortable with the possibility of having the technology leaked - and they were decommissioned nearly a decade ago.

As I said, I doubt any country is going to sell Taiwan an off-the-shelf submarine for a variety of reasons. It needs to be willing to put the money in and risk political embarrassment of a failed domestic build. To be honest the Hai Lung designs it has are a fair starting point. Nothing ground-breaking but a solid design that would be reasonable with updated fire-and-control, sonar, etc.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing. This house mini-scandal is going to haunt Chu because (1) it's so easy to explain to the average person (2) it'll be brought up by everyone in New Taipei who tries to save a historic site from KMT developmentalism (3) as a nascent project it's sure to come back if there's a cost overrun or an attempt to initiate phase 2, and most importantly (4) the KMT's now invited DPP bureaucrats and Taoyuan journalists to go on an Easter Egg hunt through Chu's Taoyuan record.

Running unopposed for chair, by the way, may be a curse in disguise because it leaves Chu unable to score a clear victory over political opponents the way Ma beat the 主流派 by besting Wang Jin-pyng for chair. Instead they'll be lying in wait to muck things up for him later.