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Richard Bush, a former chairman of the American Institute in Taiwan, was in Taipei last week to launch a Chinese version of his new book, Uncharted Strait: The Future of China-Taiwan Relations.
“Taiwan Design Chiang” (台灣設計蔣) does not make any sense in either English or Chinese, per se, because it is a verbatim translation of the five logograms.
In “The Analects of Confucius,” disciples of China's great sage wrote, “The master did not talk about prodigies, force, disorders and gods.” He never attested to, asserted or debated claims about the existence or non-existence of any deity, as well as other religious and metaphysical claims.
Tokyo and Washington seem to want nothing better than to prolong the current sovereignty row between Japan and China, which may touch off an accidental military skirmish off the disputed islands called Senkaku in Japanese and Diaoyu in Chinese. In Taiwan the eight uninhabited islets are known as Tiaoyutai, which it claims are its inherent territory.
An absentee ballot is a vote cast by an eligible voter who is unable or unwilling to visit their designated polling station. Numerous methods have been devised to facilitate absentee voting. Increasing the ease of access to absentee ballots is seen by many as one way to improve voter turnout, though some countries require that a valid reason, such as infirmity or travel, be given before a voter can participate in an absentee ballot.
Last Thursday, Kuomintang caucus whip Lai Shyh-bao unveiled the question the ruling party wants to ask in its proposed referendum on Taiwan's Fourth Nuclear Power Plant at Gongliao, officially called Longmen Plant by its operator Taiwan Power Company, and known popularly as Nuke 4. The question is: “Do you agree to halt construction on the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant and to prevent it from becoming operational?”
Unlike an election year, this year saw no large-scale noisy demonstrations to mark Peace Memorial Day, the day to remember the Feb. 28 Incident of 1947.
Premier Jiang Yi-hua is reported to have suggested he would have the future of Taiwan's fourth nuclear power plant fully and publicly discussed and then seek a referendum to decide whether it should start operation or shut down. Media reports quoted him as telling the Kuomintang legislative caucus last Thursday he would “go with public opinion in the end and it'll be the political decision.”
Officials of the American Institute in Taiwan are said to have met behind closed doors with a number of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers early last week to express Washington's “anger” at President Ma Ying-jeou's move to confront Japan over the disputed islands called Senkakus by the Japanese and Diaoyutais in Taiwan. If it's true, there's something strange about the episode.
Confucius had an account of his gradual progress and attainments kept in the Analects, which according to James Legge's translation runs in part: “At fifteen, I had my mind bent on learning. At 30, I stood firm. At 40, I had no doubts. At 70, I could follow what my heart desired, without transgressing what was right.” By “stood firm” he meant he was capable of independent thinking.
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