Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Apple Daily just can't stop making up the news....

Pro-Blue blogger ESWN has the results of a push-poll from Apple Daily up on his blog.

[Permalink] The SOGO Case (10/03/2006) (China Post) The Presidential Office expressed satisfaction with prosecutors' decision to drop the probe against first lady Wu Shu-chen in a case that alleged she received gift vouchers for free and could have intervened in the transfer of the ownership of Pacific Sogo Department Store. ... The alleged improper receipt of free gift vouchers by President Chen Shui-bian's wife was one of the major factors that sparked the ongoing "anti-corruption and depose-Chen" campaign in Taiwan seeking to oust the president.

What do the people think? Here is Apple Daily's instant telephone phone poll (sample size 540; date October 2; computerized voice interviewing). In the SOGO case, Douglas Hsu will be prosecuted but the President's wife took NT$270,000 in gift vouchers and go free. Can you accept this outcome?
- 70.7% unacceptable; 24.2% acceptable; 5.0% don't know/no opinion.

Why is there so much incredulity?
Why is there so much incredulity? Well, because the media in Taiwan is overwhelmingly partisn and has low journalistic standards. Case in point: this poll. Roland sometimes points out push-polls, but for whatever reason missed this one. But let's check out the question Apple Daily asked:

In the SOGO case, Douglas Hsu will be prosecuted but the President's wife took NT$270,000 in gift vouchers and go free. Can you accept this outcome?

Note that the query is full of loaded language that elides both the truth and context -- "go free," for example, which tends to imply guilt, instead of the nuetral "unindicted." Note also that it contrasts one indicted person with one unindicted, thereby inviting listeners to answer in a negative way. The question is pure trash. Of course, it is Apple Daily we're talking ethics? Can't wait to see them on the Beautiful Isle.


Portnoy said...

That is exactly what our big media do everyday.

Anonymous said...

Yes, big media every day is guilty of skewing the obvious facts to the point where the opposite seems to be true.

Fox in the US certainly attempts to do this to further their agenda, but the American public thankfully has more choices for receiving information that may among thoughtful people raise questions of veracity with Fox. The US public has had over 200 years to practice this art, and even now it is far from perfect compared to the ideal.

Taiwan's extremely short period since democratization is like a new baby on the block with very little experience.It is very like comparing a society that has driven cars for generations, to a country that has first generation drivers. Keep those cars in your view, or something unsavory nay happen.

What worries me is that the public here is overly exposed to one point of view, and that is the view of the pan-blue unification team here on Taiwan. If Taiwan were already a working democracy with equal rights for all, there should be media roughly divided between the two opposing idealogies.

I frankly worry, despite my great love for this island and its people, about their ability to logically think through an issue without first, almost belatedly, bursting out with violence based on skewed media, and thereby never allowing the political parties themselves to come to reason and find a compromise that would be good for both. Here you either win, or you lose, and there is no ground that is between those two points.

The art of compromise appears to have never really existed in this society, so it is hard for an average person to actually think in terms of compromise. Have you ever watched two cars crashing into each other here? The obvious person in the "right" is the person who is more dominant.

Ultimately it is my hope that freedom and justice will find fertile ground here and be firmly established, and I think that is a position that any reasonable person in our day and age can agree upon. But, for that, compromise has to be reached here, and those who are so in love with the mainland, must submit to the will of the majority at his point, and there must be a balanzed view from the media on this island.

If unification is going to come, then it should be done in a way that no person om this island loses any rights enjoyed here now. If that single condition can not be met, what rightful and moral government here could turn over the rights of these people, and have the mainland take those rights away, simply because the mainland now may have more powerful and thus will impose their idealogy just to bolster their power? Are we back to might makes right?

The pan-blue media here is no more "free" to write what they want than media in China. It is simple a mindest for them that is inescapable. It is one unfair solid wall of very often as not disinformation that is designed to control the very thoughts and actions of the people of this island. Go protest. Can you not see that this attempts to reduce people to being the slaves of a government, who they serve, rather than the government serving them?

Taiwan is very different from many other growng democracies in that a truly independent media has never been given the chance to realistically compete.

Can people not see that the DPP has bent over backwards to reach a compromise with the KMT by basically ceding, with initial little power, the control the "right" of the media that is still attempting to control the minds of their readers? Not a wise move, but one they felt they had no choice but to submit to to remain in miminal power.

By just saying that this is exactly what big media does everyday for those who are dominant in present power misses a point. Rather than just shrug one's shoulders and say that is the way it is, is it not more human to see where improvement must be made? Human beings seem to be designed to do this, and that is a quality that appears to distinguish us as different from the other species of the earth.

I do greatly fear the ongoing effects of misinformation on this island and the effect it may have on the populace. Add that to the relatively new and naive experience of the populace. That may result in greater violence.

Those of us in the foreign community have the duty of supporting human rights on this island, as long as we reamin in all our of activities within the law here, and that is not much to move in, if you think about it. One also has to think of the ultimate good of one's own country, and realize that present policies may well be ultimately detrimental to our own country.

At the very least we can use the power of writing.

I for one do not want to be a party to lessening the rights of the people here, as these people, both 49ers and earlier groups, have allowed me to live here in relative peace for many years, and I must respect and admire all of them for that, despite their present preffered identity. I do not see any moral reason why any system of government should take away the rights they are now beginning to use.

Okay, just so you all know, and can judge fairly my emotionl thoughts above, none of them are supported by facts. But, my job in PR here was to persaude thought. For you to properly judge what I wrote you must have perspective to judge my view and that must be balanced with other views. You must know who I am and why my thoughts that I present as facts are indeed subjective.

You must make a decision on what I wrote, and my hope for you and all on the island is that you all have equal access to oppsoing views, and you are given the right to decide for yourself what you think is right, and that an actual concensus here someday soon will be reached and fairly communicated to all residents.