Thursday, December 25, 2008

Kung His Hsin Nien Bing Chu Shen Tan

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas Season of many Blessings, much Joy and Happiness, Good Fortune, Safety in your every activity, Peace and Love in your heart each and everyday.

God Bless You My Friends.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Panda's From PRC, Help Choose New Names

Tuan-Tuan and Yuan-Yuan, whose names together mean Unite, are now in Taiwan which Peoples Daily Online refers to as China's Taiwan Province.

Xiexie for the Panda's but Comrade Hu & Comrade Ma give the politics a rest, on the 13 December I wrote here why must everything be political, they are Panda's they want to eat,
sleep, play and eat some more. They're uninterested in politics.

DPP Legislator Twu, Shiing
-Jer, has invited public to come up with different names for the Panda's---Fantastic idea for sure.

Among the names that have received the most support so far are Chih-Ming & Chun
-Chiao----One China & One Taiwan

More here from Taiwan News Online

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

If at first you don't succeed...

Via Taiwan News Online

Taiwan Prosecutors having failed to convince the Court to hold former President Chen in jail without bond said on Monday, that they intend to launch a second appeal by the end of the week.

Last week I wrote here that Chen is a high profile person, where is he going to go? Everyone knows who he is, what is he going to do, attempt to flee the Court's jurisdiction by boat ?

Maybe Prosecutors now fear that he is going to swim for it ?

Sunday, December 21, 2008

China Continues To Restrict Press Freedom

Chinese authorities have now begun blocking access to NYT website according to China Digital Times in their growing efforts to stifle speech.

Journalists continue to face arrests on dubious allegations according to the Committee to Protect Journalists in one case,
a Reporter went missing for 15 days before being located in a neighboring Province. In a different case on the 04 December, Chinese authorities arrested Li Min, a reporter for CCTV, at her Beijing home.

As China strives to silence speech, they continue to detain Liu Xiaobo who I wrote about on the 09 December here for illegally organizing academic professionals calling for Democratic and Legal reforms.

Jenny Hsu writes today in the Taipei Times, "Given the complex and close ties between Taiwan and China, the Taiwanese public and President Ma Ying
-jeou, have a heavy mandate to defend democratic movements in China and urge the Chinese Communist Party, to immediately release prominent dissident writer Liu Xiaobo..."

Free speech is essential in the pursuit of learning, every idea or thought is not an avenue of incitement, censorship only results in the pursuit of finding cracks in the Great Fire Wall of China.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Online Journalists Dangers Worldwide

Via Asian Sentinel

As the year draws to an end, Journalists are continuing to go to jail across the world for attempting to report what governments don't want them to report and despite the perception that that there is relative safety in Internet Journalism, Bloggers are going to jail faster than members of the mainstream press, according to a survey by the NY based "Committee to Protect Journalists" (CPJ)

For the tenth straight year, China has put more Reporters in prison than any other country although Cuba, Burma, Eritrea, Uzbekistan are not far behind. The prison census has fallen slightly by two Reporters according to the survey. Each of the five countries have consistently placed among the the worst in detained Journalists.

At least 56 online Journalist are detained world wide according to CPJ census, a tally that surpasses the number of print Journalist for the first time...

On the 09 December, I wrote here that China arrest Human Rights Activist Liu Xiaobo, for organizing academic professionals, calling for Democratic and Legal reforms.

People are suffering throughout the world, struggling for basic human rights and civil liberties. Democracy is everything, we must never take our precious freedoms of speech and press for granted

"Those who would give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty or safety."
Benjamin Franklin

Friday, December 19, 2008

Illegal Drugs From China, Thank Comrade Ma

Ground Crews prepared for the arrival of the first direct flight from Shenzhen, China to Taipei---China & Taiwan have resumed direct air service, which will aid in the smuggling of illegal drugs into Taipei.

About 30 kg. (66 lbs.) of smuggled party drug Ketamine arrived on a direct flight from China according to Customs Officials.

Airport Customs Officials in Taipei, found the popular powdered hallucinogenic today packed into 8 boxes on a Chinese Cargo flight.

The benefits of resuming direct links between PRC and Taiwan, many thanks to Comrade Ma.

More here from Reuters

KMT Promises No Talks On Unification ?

China's Delegates stand for the national anthem in Beijing, commemorating the 30th Anniversary of China's economic revolution. During the boring speech by Comrade Hu Jintao, paramilitary police are having a difficult time staying awake.

President Ma Ying
-jeou ruling KMT pro-Chinese party is scheduled to meet with the Chinese Communists this weekend, pledging not to discuss unification.

Why is it that one has to say that unless it is on the agenda Comrade Ma?

Reporters Without Borders Condemn Ma

Activists march on the 07 December demanding that pro-China President Ma Ying-jeou, apologize for Police abuses and human rights violations. Protesters hold a board during the rally, demanding that the government amend the Assembly and Parade Law which restricts freedom of speech.

Repoters Without Borders condemn President Ma failure to respect Freedom of the Press.

More here Why Wild Strawberries march for Human Rights

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Chen Arrives Into Court For Custody Hearing

Via Taiwan News Online

Former Taiwan President Chen Shui
-bian arriving at the
Taiwan Taipei District Court for a Hearing on his custody today.

The Taiwan High Court, Ordered that the District Court
reconsider its decision to release the former President
following his indictment on corruption allegations.

Exactly where is a high profile person going to run away too ? My goodness, everyone knows who he is and Taiwan is an Island, what is he going to do, attempt to flee the jurisdiction of the Court by boat?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

China Warns Bloggers Certain Sites Violate Laws But Cracks Remain In The Great Firewall

The official Chinese News Agency has warned Bloggers yesterday that "certain websites violate Chinese laws" by calling China and Taiwan two separate countries.

According to Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao, by calling Taiwan an independent country, I may have just violated China's Anti
-Secession Laws subjecting me to severe penalty.

Oh my...however writing from the USA we have whats called the 1st Amendment which guarantees me freedom of speech and press from governmental interference. Come to think of it, China has claimed since 1982 that it's constitution guarantees freedom of speech. Hmmm ?

Frankly its a little difficult to have it both ways simultaneously, either you do or you don't---little like being pregnant, one either is or isn't.

Despite what PRC may otherwise believe, the Internet has assured Bloggers may enjoy free speech despite even the best efforts by the authorities. The numbers of Bloggers in PRC has grown steadily to over 107 million this year, total users have risen 56% it is an impossible task to monitor everyones traffic.

Of course there are always tools available to crack the Great Firewall of China which hides the users IP Address, using anonymous proxy servers, etc. all of which enables Chinese Internet Users & Bloggers to have access to news and information.

During the last year, I have written numerous stories about PRC many of them good, some quite heart wrenching as I have illustrated the devastation following the catastrophic Sichuan earthquake, which continues to make me feel incredibly sad.

The Internet will continue to provide users with the ability to freely exchange news and information around the globe despite the best efforts of the Chinese Internet Police to block access. Denial of Human Rights only encourages others to find new and innovative ways to assure themselves that free speech and press can never be totally curtailed.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Historic Sailing Vessel May Be Forever Lost

Via Associated Press

More than 50 years ago 6 men set sail from Taiwan with no sailing experience and navigated their way to San Francisco aboard an aging Chinese sailing vessel.

The boat named "Free China" is an historic relic but unless moved, the owner of a shipyard in California says this seafaring craft
will be lost forever as he will junk it if not removed from the Sacramento River Delta Boat Yard by the end of the month.

More here from ABC News 10 Sacramento

Monday, December 15, 2008

Democracy Threatened

Taiwan still stands as a beacon of hope for the rule of law and democratic development in Asia but recent government related human rights violations have caused its rays to shine less brightly said David Kilgour, a Canadian Human Rights Lawyer, urging the public to closely monitor the (Ma Ying-jeou) Administration in order to safeguard the country's democracy.

Kilgour, the VP of the Taiwan
-Canadian Friendship Group, in the Canadian Parliment, a well known international human rights lawyer, activist and former prosecutor, was one of the invited speakers at the International Forum on the 60th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights held in Kaohsiung City on Thursday.

Citing the example of police brutality and riots last month during the visit of Chinese envoy Chen Yunlin, Kilgour said, many friends of Taiwan were concerned about dramatic deterioration in the rule-of-law, human dignity and democratic practices in Taiwan in recent months.

"To tell people that they couldn't wear 'I love Taiwan T
-Shirts or hold the national flag was ridiculous," he said in an interview with the Taipei Times.

"I hope that President Ma Ying
-jeou, a Harvard trained man, will understand that democracy is more than about having elections every four years. Democracy is about such things as allowing people to protest peacefully," said Kilgour.

Rest here from Taipei Times

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Defending Free Speech & Assembly

During last months visit by Chen Yunlin, head of PRC Association of Relations Across the Taiwan Strait, Activists march on the streets during anti-China protests. A woman beats an effigy of PRC Negotiator Chen.

Freedom of Speech in Taiwan from The Bala Daily by Hai

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Oh Please, Why Must Everything Be Political ?

The pair of giant Panda's offered by PRC to Taiwan from Sichuan Province have not escaped politics.

-Tuan & Yuan-Yuan, whose names together mean Unite will leave together for the Taipei Zoo sometime this month.

Oh please, drop your not so hidden message Wen Jiabao &
Ma Ying
-jeou, can't you give it a rest for 5 minutes ?

They are Panda's, they don't care about your political goals all they are interested in is eating and getting enough sleep so they may eat some more.

Chen Released On Bail Following Indictment

Former President Chen Shui-bian, has been released on bail after being detained in Taipei for a month, is seen being greeted by supporters.

Chen has pursued continued Democracy and Independence from PRC which considers Taiwan a "renegade province" unlike the current President Ma Ying
-jeou, who has been accused of being concilliatory towards PRC and receiving his marching orders from Beijing.

While the allegations against Chen are indeed serious and if convicted, may result in him spending the rest of his life in prison, its important to be reminded that an indictment does not prove Chen is guilty of anything.

Chen denies the allegations against him saying that he is the victim of a political persecution by the ruling KMT, under the direction of President Ma.

More here from Andrew Jacobs