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Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen will embark on her U.S. tour today, labeled the "Iron Man's Schedule" for her intense 12-day tour that takes Tsai to six cities across the U.S. While it is certain that Tsai will need to clarify her cross-strait relations plan, and delve deeper into what it means to "maintain the status quo," both China and the U.S. have also thrown another curveball that is closely tied to the previous issue: the South China Sea dispute.
In case you haven't heard, Ireland passed a historic referendum last Friday, overwhelmingly voting in favor of same-sex marriage. Even more importantly, this is the first country to legalize marriage equality by popular vote, and it won't be the last.
Gen. Douglas MacArthur said in a farewell speech to the U.S. Congress on April 19, 1951, "Old soldiers never die. They just fade away." He was an old soldier who had just been sacked by President Harry S. Truman as commander-in-chief of the U.N. Command in the Korean War. Unlike the war-hero five-star general who just faded away, some of Taiwan's political has-beens never die, and try not to fade away.
Political hypocrisy is rife in Taiwan at present as the main political parties jostle over proposed constitutional amendments, admonishing one another, albeit comically, to be nonpartisan and take the high road by putting country ahead of party. Proposed amendments include lowering the voting age to 18, allowing absentee ballots and resuming legislative approval over the appointment of the premier.
By the time this newspaper goes to newsstands, the world will know if "The Assassin" (聶隱娘), the martial arts film by Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-hsien (侯孝賢), has taken the prestigious Palme d'Or, the biggest award at the Cannes Film Festival.
Within the pan-green coalition, some old names have been emerging from the woodwork. Shih Ming-teh (施明德) -- who last made major news during the Depose A-Bian movement -- on Thursday charged both main parties with collusion with big business when announcing his bid for the presidency.
The Taipei Dome row seems like a never-ending story packed with twists and intrigue. But the Taipei City Government must tell the citizens, and the nation in general, when and how this row is going to end, and what is really going on behind the scenes.
The Presidential Office was active in holding public relations activities this week. A press conference inviting local and overseas reporters was held on Monday, followed the next day by a nearly 7,000-word presidential speech.
A foreign ambassador learned firsthand this week that driving in Taiwan can be an inconvenient, stressful and even dangerous experience. He also witnessed how Taiwan media, which have long been caught by shrill and sensational reporting, have now been reduced to the role of broadcasting "one-sided" stories, just like closed-circuit television (CCTV) broadcasts. What or who is your source?
On Monday, the outspoken former Health Minister Yaung Chih-liang (楊志良) officially joined the Kuomintang (KMT) primary for the 2016 presidential election by registering his candidacy.
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