Archive for June, 2010|Monthly archive page

KMT Really Likes to Misinterpret Others’ Idea

http://money.chinatimes.com/news/news-content.aspx?id=20100630001577&cid=1210

KMT is once again at it.  Now Ma invite a bunch of economics and business “masters” to Taiwan, to create the sense that all the masters support ECFA etc.  The problem is, do these masters truly understand what ECFA is?  Do they know the political implication, not just economic implication?

Furthermore, do Ma really understand these “master’s” work?

I think the answers to all these questions are NO.

While I really like the work of some of these masters, such as Michael Porter’s “On Competition,” I really don’t see how some of these work can be link to ECFA or an economic policies that depends on China.  For example, you can actually uses the theories and principles in “On Competition, ” such as the Diamond theory, combined with the past experience and current situation of Taiwan to argue against policies similar to ECFA.  Furthermore, “On Competition” emphasizes the importance of industry cluster and  the role government has in it, not on FTA or shit like ECFA.  And I have no fucking clue how Christensen’s work can be related to ECFA at all.   As for 大前研一, I think he is full of it.  So I don’t really care what he says.

Also, as pointed out by Ghost_twtw in another one of his nice blog, No ECFA (No FTA) does not mean NO TRADE.  Japan and the US trades a lot with each other but they have no FTA.  However, KMT is now trying to lose people’s focus and equate NO ECFA with NO TRADE.  Any rational people will know immediately this is BS, but as shown before during 2008 presidential election, KMT media can turn pure BS into gold (people who forgot can go to YouTube and immerse themselves in Ma’s presidential election campaign commercial once again)…and some morons will actually believe in them.  Therefore, DPP needs to be aware of this tactics used by KMT and counter effectively.

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Ah…Where is A-Bian When You Need One

http://www.libertytimes.com.tw/2010/new/jun/30/today-e14.htm

Stock falls…that is not surprising.  What is surprising for the pan-blue is perhaps why signing ECFA did not boost the stock.  The only stocks that went up are the airlines. While many factors affect the stock price of airlines, one has to wonder if ECFA boost their stocks.  But does Taiwan really wants more air traveling between Taiwan and China?  Right now there are far more Taiwanese flying to China than Chinese flying to Taiwan.  More air travel could mean devastation to the domestic service sector.  But Taiwan probably does not want more Chinese tourism neither, given that already with small number some Chinese tourists are wreaking havoc in Taiwan.  So what’s the benefit, for Taiwan, of airlines doing more business with China?  Probably none.

The pan blue media, unlike during the Chen administration era when they just blame every stock market fall on domestic policies or on Chen himself, start to blame it on Europe this time.  Errr…yea, Europe.  What the heck does Europe have to do with Taiwan I don’t really know.  I mean…come on, the financial crisis has been going on for 2 years there already.

And…who is that guy that said during election that TAIEX can reach 20,000 if Ma got elected, and later said it’s a JOKE?

I wonder if those so-called analyst missed the good old time.  It is quite an easy to explain everything with A-Bian after all.  Ah, where is President Chen when you need one…

So…ECFA is About Politics After All…lol

Report from pro-KMT UDN.  Ma said ECFA is a step in creating peace.  So…the question is, before KMT and Ma said ECFA is about economics, and economics and politics should be separated.  But now Ma said ECFA creates peace…but peace is obviously a political term and a political status.

So just exactly what ECFA is for?  It looks like even Ma and the KMT themselves are totally confused.

All I can say is whatever Ma says is a bunch of horse shit.

UPDATE: Further evidences regarding the same matter.

Which Opinion Poll Did BBC Use?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/asia_pacific/10442557.stm

Quote “There have been some street protests in Taiwan against the deal but opinion polls suggest the majority on the island are in favour.”

And…which opinion poll is that, BBC?  Because I don’t see a poll of authority that clearly indicate majority for-ECFA exist.  Is BBC just using a poll from the government or some pan-blue media?  Once again foreign media shows bias and their lack of knowledges in Taiwan.

KMT Using the Same Strategy Once Again

If one bother to read the pro-China and pro-KMT’s China Times, one will notice now KMT is once again trying to use the “WE ARE THE SAME” strategy.  Now this shitty newspaper is trying to project the impression that Su and DPP do not really opposes ECFA.  They only do that to win pan green votes etc.

This smear strategy is actually quite clever.  If it succeeds, it brings KMT a few benefits:

  1. KMT can now justify ECFA and its inappropriate process.  Thus it decreases resistance and help Ma low rating.
  2. KMT can stabilize its own support.

This is the similar to the “pan blue and pan green both suck” slogan strategy pan blue uses for years.  Granted, there are scums in both parties, just like there are bad people in any organization and society.  However, that does not mean “both sucks.”  KMT’s structural problem is rooted in its core and that makes the party much worse than DPP.  This can be easily observed from its organizational structure and the lousy performance KMT had in many of its governed area for many years.

The only problem for the KMT of course is…who the hell is actually believing in what China Times says nowadays anyway.  It is run by a pro-CCP owner after all.

Lee: Give up Ma to Save Taiwan

Ex-president Lee (李登輝) made a pretty powerful speech during the 626 demonstration.  The catch phrase that outline the goal “五都全贏 棄馬保台” (Rough Translation: Win all 5 Metro election, Give up Ma to Save Taiwan) is simple, clear and powerful.

Also mentioned in the video:

  • Adding to this,  林義雄 has became the advisor of Su’s (蘇貞昌) election compaign.
  • Dalai Lama asked “what exactly is Taiwan’s direction?” 

Many respectful elders have now urge Taiwanese, in words and in action, to turn the course.  The impacts could be great.  It would be interesting to see the later development.

We Need Hope

The 626 demonstration proceeded under the rain and grey sky of Taipei.  The worries and anxiety created by ECFA is great among many in the society.  Some hardcore pan blue supporters and some of those retired people don’t give a fuck and disregarded the worries simply as “they don’t even know what ECFA is.”  As if they are superior and more educated.  But are they?   They are the ones that are removed away from the reality of Taiwan and  got shielded by KMT’s considered resources and propaganda.  Do these people who consider themselves superior know what ECFA is?  Do they know its purpose?  Why?  and why now? 

IMO, they know far less than anyone else.  Many that opposes ECFA has good and solid reasons.  Some oppose it because they know ECFA will erode Taiwan’s sovereignty.  Some oppose it because of the decreasing wage and job opportunities ECFA will bring in many sectors.  I personally worries about the possibility of Chinese banks come in and messing up Taiwan’s finance and economies (by giving money to pro-China business, which will create unfair advantages and screw up the competition system in Taiwan).  Some oppose it because it proceeded outside the WTO system and therefore lacks 3rd party arbiter support and can create huge problems for Taiwan.  It does not matter which angles you look at ECFA, the impact and potential danger it brings to the Taiwan is great, because now China has all the initiative.

The more I analyze  it and the more I tried to put all the pieces together, the more I fear for Taiwan’s future.  And I am sure quite many people feel the same way.

However, worries itself cannot solve any problem and cannot help our situation.  Pan green needs to find a good counter measure and damage control to the problems created by ECFA.  This is now absolutely necessary because it looks like KMT is forcing it through no matter what (the last line of defense is the Legislative Yuan.  Some KMT legislators express their discontent about the ECFA, but they are the minority.  Since KMT now has absolute majority, I do not hold high hope for Legislative Yuan).  When the time is right, pan green has to publish these ideas effectively. 

It is essential to bring hope to counter Ma’s one way ticket to China.  Only then can pan green rally even more support.

A Good Warning From Liberty Times

http://www.libertytimes.com.tw/2010/new/jun/16/today-s1.htm

This is a very good warning to DPP.  Very insightful. 

DPP needs to understand the fundamental nature of CCP and KMT, the key failure of KMT.  Without those understanding and a solid principle, this type of policy will only be used by the CCP and KMT to shake the foundation of Taiwan.

The fundamental reasoning behind this platform concept seems to be to bring different voice and communication to the CCP.  However, to me, that just sounds way too naive.  The US has tried to do that for many years (through official/unofficial channels).  However, the result is very poor.  It seems to me, CCP does not lack understanding of Taiwan (although a lot of Chinese don’t have a damn clue except what CCP told them: Taiwan is part of China), but it is trying to use this knowledge to bring Taiwan down.

Just look at how the CCP lure KMT and its old guard, and now fully utilizing KMT as its agent within Taiwan.  Look at how it lures business to China, and create tension, division and problems within Taiwan.  Everything it does have traces of calculated scheme in them.  Even though not everything is by design, they certainly use every opportunity in trying to bring Taiwan down in a divide and conquer fashion. 

IMO, this has already happend during ex-President Chen’s time.  Hopefully DPP has learned and has enough wisdom  not repeat the same mistake.

Aftershock of Foxconn Incident – The Mixed Bag of Taiwanese Business Returning and Industry Upgrade

The Aftershock

There are still some aftershock of the Foxconn incident, but these aftershocks troubles me a bit because it shows many people in Taiwan still have this Chinese centric thinking that largely ignore Taiwan itself.

Some students and academia has jump in the attack of Foxconn.  One professor even call it “the Shame of Taiwan.”  While I myself start disliking Foxconn, its chairman and its management team in general way before this incident, to call it a shame and smear this “shame” upon Taiwan is unbelievably STUPID.  It is Foxconn, not Taiwan, that choose to build these 800,000 workers factories in China.  It is Foxconn, not Taiwan, that choose the way they run the factories.

Many people in Taiwan, including me, dislike their strategies, not because it causes problems in China, but because it causes unemployment/lower wages in Taiwan and large outflow of capital from Taiwan in pursuit of cheap labor and low profit margin.  In fact, Foxconn has helped out a great deal in boosting Chinese economy.  

These academia seems to miss all of these points and simplify it to be a “shame” and amplify it to be a “shame” of Taiwan.  To align themselves with the CCP and bash Foxconn and Taiwan now, one then cannot help but wonder about these academia’s intention.

The Mixed Bag

Now some Taiwanese business are thinking moving some production back to Taiwan or else where, since now that they have jacked up the wage in China, and Chinese labour might not hold the same attractiveness anymore once it lost its price appeal.  However, this news, if true, is good, bad and tragic to Taiwan at the same time.

The good part is that, perhaps after some Taiwanese business people realize that chasing cheap labour is not the way to go, they will re-invested into Taiwan and re-engage the route of production automation and re-pursuit higher quality products.  This might have a rejuvinating effect in Taiwan’s economies.  Factory will provide jobs.  Production automation will require engineering services.  Higher qulity products could bring more money and brand power into Taiwan. 

The bad part is, some of these Taiwanese business people, given the past record, will not go in that direction.  Instead, they will once again engage in cheap labour route.  That, in the short term, is not a big deal and might solve the unemployment rate problems as well.  However, when China, with its larger population base, once again has much lower wages, these Taiwanese business people will again jump into China’s embrace.  Therefore, in the mid and long term, whether this is a good thing remain to be seen.

The tragic part is, Taiwan now has to welcome those that have abandon it in the first place back (maybe not all Taiwanese business abandon Taiwan as some are forced to move due to supply chain).  Wouldn’t it seem that justice has been served more correctly if these business people lost their shirts in China and return to Taiwan penny-less? (well, actually that happens a lot but not to the large enough scale to cool the Chinese fever before)  But perhaps this is the reality.  And maybe these business will have a harder time to survive, now that many industries have advanced while these people pursuit their cheap labour….who knows.

And just how many will actually return is still unknown, we will have to wait and see.

PS.  Now I think of it…from the business perspective, perhps these people (maybe even those American and Japanese firms) realize now that if they have most of their business operation in China, they will become like sheep waiting to be killed and served by the Chinese government.  In another word, the Chinese government will have absolute power over them.  However, if they diversify, in this case, moving major operation back to Taiwan, then Chinese government holds much less power over them.

Industry Upgrade

In any case, it remain to be seen what will happen next.  However, I think it’s probably worth a while for the pan green to think of a way to avoid these dangerous over reliance on outsourcing production to China in the future.  I am not totally sure how…but there are obviously other way than pursuing cheaper labour or labour intensive production.  Automation, training, R&D, value chain, customization, service, marketing, brand….etc…all these might help in diversify Taiwan’s economic structure and in its stability and growth.

Also, DPP intends to pay closer attention to unemployment rate and the widening gap between rich and poor etc.  I think that is a good thing.  However, it is not easy.  Simply redistribute wealth does not seem to work well in a lot of European countries (economic stagnation in France and Germany, collapsing in Greeks, extremely high unemployment rate in Spain).  However, Taiwan seems to have policies that give unfair advantages to the rich / powerful and  large coroporation…perhaps those policies could be examined first,…I am not sure lol.

9 Years is Really Enough

The recent mafia shoot out incident in Taichung City involving 4 police men is not the main focal point.  KMT and Mayor Hu tried to blame this on the police chief of Taichung and looking at this as a single incident, but it’s not.  The real question is why has Taichung City gradually became a hotbed of organized crimes for the past 15 or so years?  This single incident is but a small tip of a much larger iceberg.

Of course, this transformation did not start from Hu’s time, but his inability to make any meaningful and beneficial changes in Taichung City is quite obvious.  His single major plan of building a Guggenheim museum in Taichung City was a total failure.  I think it’s safe to say that he is not a capable mayor.

However, it is indeed a puzzlement that Hu enjoys high popularity even though most of his ability is widely recognized as poor.  Some say it is because of his PR skills.  However, PR skill alone is not enough, you need media friendliness.  And indeed, once again pan blue media played a major role in carefully shielding Hu from any blames.  Many Taichung Citizens, furthermore, choose to naively believe his sweet talks because they like his moderate personality.

As people blame Hu for his inability, one also has to look at how the citizens treating the officials.  If the citizens are being passive, being way too forgiving to the intentional and unintentional mistakes, how can the city improve?  Taichung has given Hu 9 years.  Given his not so great performance, that is really enough.  If Taichung citizens give Hu another term, one really has to wonder: what are they thinking?

Related Link: This is actually quite funny, but true lol.

Update: this could be an interesting development.  More followups and confirmations are required though.  However, if it is indeed so, then the side effects and things that people worried about the Chinese tourism deal really come true then.  It is not unreasonable – given the lex security and the convenience, a hitman from China might have a greater chance of succeeding than a domestic hitman.  Looks like the organize crime are also going cross strait.  The government needs to really pay attention to this type of development because it could have a davastating effect in Taiwan’s society.