"Pay close attention to that man behind the curtain!"

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

China Times lies

The pan-blue media can't handle the truth!

Today's China Times bears a headline designed to cause pan-blue orgasms all across Pan-blovia. For those with an ounce of objectivity left in them, it reeks of desperation.

Here's the head-lie:
籲扁下台效應擴大:扁律師 閃靈主唱連署

[My translation:] Appeal to [Chen Shui-]bian to step down expands: [Chen Shui-]bian's lawyer, Chthonic lead singer sign online petition
My bullshit detector immediately said, "BULLSHIT!" My more logical side said I should still check things out.

I did.

Sir, your bullshit detector is working perfectly
Unlike the China Times, I checked my facts. On Chthonic lead singer Freddy Lim's blog, here's what Freddy himself says about his name being on that petition:



[My rough translation:] Earlier this evening, I was shocked to find my own name among those on the online petition entitled "Democracy and the Moral Crisis of Taiwanese Identity." I went into deep thought. This was the wrong time for such a thing to happen, because every bit of my time was needed in order to prepare for my upcoming concert this Friday. However, this had already happened and reporters were trying to get in touch with me. If I didn't say something immediately, I was afraid that this false label would be stuck to me forever.


Lastly, I want to reiterate publicly, I absolutely did not sign my name to that petition. Some "dear friends" must have "kindly" placed my name there without my knowledge. Within a short time, the petitioners removed my name, so I thank them for that. I wish the best of luck to those who care about transitional justice in Taiwan, and hope for a day when blue and green can come together and give the people of this nation the justice they deserve.
And it took me all of about 15 minutes to find that information.

Freddy also called in to several TV talk shows last night to talk about this, and yet the China Times still printed it as a front page headline.

The "blues who cried 'wolf'" are the "wolves"!
Once again, the proof is in the pudding that most of the media in Taiwan are one with the pan-blues and that the pan-blues are the ones in a deep "moral crisis."

This is the third time this month I've blogged on such tactics by the opponents of democracy in Taiwan. First, my name and words were usurped and used as a straw man on the blog of son-of-a-late-KMT-diplomat Bevin Chu. Next, fellow Taiwan democracy blogger Michael Turton's name was misappropriated in an apparent attempt to add credibility to a lost cause. Then came the China Times, whose lies touched someone with immediate access to more open media outlets. Freddy spoke out about this on the SET program 大話新聞 ("Talking Show") a short while ago repeating some of what he said above.

Where to now?
The least I could hope to come out of this would be for people to begin to wake up to the blatant lies and realize that there are many more that aren't as easy to spot. Ideally, I would like these recent events to be the catalyst for the rapid downfall of the China Times and all of the other mendacious media outlets in Taiwan.

Down with the lies! Long live truth!

Character actors: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Sunday, July 23, 2006

The malevolent tactics of those who oppose Taiwan's democracy

* Lie
* Cheat
* Steal
* Kill

Recent history
Friday evening, fellow pro-Taiwan democracy blogger Michael Turton wrote about how someone had hijacked his identity and dishonestly added his name to a list of "signatures" allegedly showing support for a group of so-called "pan-green academics" who gave a press conference last Saturday afternoon asking Taiwan's president Chen Shui-bian to "seriously consider stepping down" because of a supposed "moral crisis."

I immediately doubted whether this group was pan-green at all, especially when the totally unobjective media present at their press conference seemed to provide the applause for their own microphones to record. (I heard it myself as I saw the press conference being broadcast live on TV.) At about the same time, anonymous comments similar to this one began appearing on Michael's blog urging him to "support democracy" by signing the petition at twcivilsociety.org.

Soon thereafter, Michael's name (in Chinese) appeared on the list -- twice. Somebody with a non-democratic agenda had put it there without his consent.

An amazing coincidence?
Less than two weeks ago, a similar thing happened to me. Without my consent, my commentary from another blog fraudulently appeared on the blog of one Bevin Chu, the son of a late KMT diplomat and unabashed democracy-hater. When I submitted a real comment pointing out that I hadn't posted the first one bearing my name, I was ignored.

After I sent Chu one more comment (displayed in full in my earlier post), he responded by shutting down the public comments on his blog entirely while currently only allowing "team members" to continue posting comments.

Despite his blog's comments supposedly being "moderated" (at that time) and the fact that he chose to ignore my real comments completely, he made the excuse that he didn't have the time to deal with "Taiwan independence trollers, on a one to one basis" [sic]. Since I could no longer submit comments or even send him an e-mail, I posted all the info on my blog for the world to see.

Chu obviously had no trouble "allowing" that one fake comment, because he used it as a "straw man" to attack me for something in which I had no part. What kind of person would do something like that? Well, Bevin Chu and whoever unscrupulously posted a comment in my name on his blog, that's who.

A lie told one million times is still a lie
The more he says it, the less I believe it
In an even more recent post, Chu tells us a whopping 18 times that the people petitioning President Chen to step down are "Deep Green academics." 18 times -- in a post where Chu calls Chen their "Fuhrer"!

Both Mao Zedong and Joseph Goebbels would have been proud.

You decide
What makes some of these people "green"? Some are members of the DPP's "New Tide" faction. Some were involved in the Formosa Incident of 1979. But to call some of those people "green" is like calling Sisy Chen, Hsu Hsin-liang, or Cheng Li-wen (all former DPP members) "green." Their own actions paint them otherwise.

As deep blue as some of the aforementioned figures are, it's hard to believe there were ever "green" to begin with.

If these academics and their plan were truly of a "Deep Green" nature, why would the pan-blue media applaud them so loudly? Why would such "Deep Greens" be "dancing to pro-Blue tunes", as Michael says? Why would anonymous opponents of pro-Taiwan democracy bloggers support these academics? Why would these supposed guardians of "morals" hijack our identities and try to make us appear to "support" causes which we do NOT?

More importantly, why are they obsessed with asking Chen Shui-bian and the DPP to uphold "high moral standards"? They would do better to start by asking such things of these people instead:

2'24" YouTube video: "Out of control"
Click "Play" at lower left to load the video here.
Click on the screen to open the video in a new browser window.
(It's loud. I suggest lowering the volume and hitting "Pause"
until the video loads fully.)

Somebody get these guys a mirror
Chi Wan-sheng is one of the academics involved in the 1979 Formosa Incident who went on the run when the others were arrested. He called in to the TVBS show 2100 on the night of July 17, 2006 alleging that President Chen's son-in-law Chao Chien-ming had illegally obtained 10,000 shares of stock in Waterland Holdings Company. Chi said in his call that he would produce the evidence the next day.

Can you guess what happened?

I thought that you could. No evidence was produced. It "wasn't the right time," he said, because this would divide the public's attention.

An opinion piece in Thursday's Liberty Times criticizes the media's behavior surrounding Chi's claim. Instead of asking the prosecutors' office, someone at the stock exchange, or Chi himself to provide the actual evidence, reporters did what lazy reporters usually do -- they went to truck-riding KMT legislator and habitual liar Chiu Yi for his thoughts instead. Chiu, you should note, was judged [CORRECTION] indicted by the Taipei District Prosecutors' Office to be the loser Friday in 4 out of 7 cases about damaging the reputations of other political figures, one doctor, and 3 people employed in the media. (In the other 3 cases, no judgment of guilt was determined.)

These people who make accusations without evidence, who hijack the identity of others and distort their positions, and call for revolution when their party loses a democratic election -- these people are worried about the "morals" of others? Give me a fucking break!

For what it's worth...
Johnny Neihu (who fell out of favor recently with me because of some idiocy about saying "So what?" to the opposition's libel) attempts to redeem himself (slightly) today. He tells us about several other obviously fake "signatories" to the aforementioned petition [Emphasis in original]:
No wonder, then, that their online petition asking Chen to fall on his sword received support from Chen himself, as well as first lady Wu Shu-jen (吳淑珍); Annette Lu; former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝); US President George W. Bush; the very dead Sun Yat-sen (孫逸仙) and Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石); and the unholy trilogy of Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), former KMT chairman Lien Chan (連戰) and People First Party Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜). Oh, and Chen Shui-bian's dear old mother, too.

Hey guys, I know it's summer and getting pretty hot out there, but couldn't you have shed the egghead stereotype and hauled your lazy asses from your air-conditioned offices and out onto the street to collect signatures and addresses from real people?
Johnny veers off the path again with a screed that's full of innuendo before finally showing a bit more sense with these remarks:
Anyone who thinks a president should resign when he has committed no crime and is fulfilling whatever tasks are left after a hostile legislature has had its way is a sworn political enemy, a dunce, or both.


Finally, dear reader, remember this: the Great Jogger Ma Ying-jeou himself has welcomed the idea of an interim Lu presidency.

Be afraid. Be very afraid.
You see? Those guys are so "green," KMT chairman Ma Ying-jeou wants the very same thing.

Don't miss the part of the above article where Johnny, echoing what I said in my earlier post about Bevin Chu, reminds people that Internet polling does not equal democracy. Despite his recent failings, I can't help but like that part. Still, he needs to get back on the ball.

A broad spectrum of moral standards: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Monday, July 10, 2006

Bevin Chu despises democracy and honesty

Son-of-a-late-KMT-diplomat Bevin Chu steps onto the wrong side of the blog-street

In comments to a post ironically titled "Champions of Taiwan Independence don't believe in Democracy" -- wherein Chu actually writes for all to see that he "despise[s] democracy" -- someone copied an actual comment of mine from another blog, and posted it on Chu's blog without my knowledge, signing my name to it. Chu then used the completely recontextualized comment to claim that I was "trying to change the subject" on a post which I hadn't yet read.

Not only is this a pathetic straw man -- it's just so incredibly pan-blue in so many respects! Let's take a look at what seems to be an accidental pulling back of the curtain to reveal the modus operandi of the pan-blues.

Taking "moderation" to the extreme
Since Chu moderated comments on his blog, it stands to reason that he either approved the comment in question or had previously approved the person who actually submitted it. In response to this misuse of my identity, I submitted a real comment that went like this:
You have comment moderation? Well, how about moderating?

Those are my words above, but I posted them on a different blog. It seems you noticed that they have nothing to do with this post, but you drew your own "end of story" conclusions out of something whose context made no sense.

Go read the post to which I was responding if you want to know what it was about.

I don't know how that comment got here. Responding to this kind of BS is the only reason for me to post anything on this blog or read it at all. I only knew it was here because somebody followed the link to my blog in the previous comment labeled with my name.

Change the subject? Why should I? You can talk about it 'til you're blue in the face for all I care. Just be sure to take anything you read in the China Post with a pound of salt.


Tim Maddog
Two days later, my real comment to Chu still hadn't appeared, but another "anonymous" comment (not mine) had been approved by him, thus providing himself with another chance to feign superiority while continuing to ignore my rather straightforward note above.

Being the fair-minded kind of guy that I am, I submitted one more comment earlier today that went like this:
Bevin, did you get my point yet?

It's been approximately 48 hours since I informed you that the first comment signed with my name was not submitted by me. You have subsequently allowed other comments and attempted to twist them in your favor, but my attempt to speak the truth and to clarify things has been ignored.

Is this the sort of thing you learned from your "KMT diplomat" father? You certainly make this the most natural conclusion for me to draw.

Bottom line: If you're on the "Post a Comment" page, you should see an identifying image that's [sic] doesn't accompany the first comment. That means I didn't submit it. ¿Comprende? Capite? 懂不懂?

Submitted by the real Tim Maddog
[Typo in original: The "that's" should simply be "that."]

Chu could have done a couple of things at this point. He could've said, "Okay, I made a mistake," and then corrected it. Or he could've gotten angry and tried to baffle me with more bullshit.

Instead, he pathetically deletes all the comments from that post, and closes comments on his blog as announced by this post:
As of today The China Desk will cease posting reader comments.

Other than ceasing to post reader comments however, The China Desk will remain the same as it has been for the past decade.


The reason for this return to the previous norm is time.

Responding to Taiwan independence trollers [sic] on a one to one basis is simply not worth the author's limited time. Life is too short and too precious to squander in such a manner.
If "the author" (here referring to himself in the third person, as Chu himself has mocked Chen Shui-bian for doing) had actually spent any time "[r]esponding" to my comments, I might consider giving him the benefit of the doubt, but that is not the way it happened.

Next, if somebody misuses your identity and you reply to the misdeed, that doesn't make you a "troller" -- it makes you a victim. This merely reveals just how pathetic Chu is and that he doesn't have a leg to stand on in this argument. The only proper way out would have been a correction and an apology. Again, that didn't happen.

It's perfectly within Chu's rights to close the comments section of his own blog. But I also have the right to speak out about what happened. Since he doesn't even publish an e-mail address on his blog (strange for someone who promotes "market anarchism") I no longer have any way to send this to him directly, so I will instead post what I have to say here in "open-letter" fashion:
Not-so-dear Bevin,

In a comments section that was supposedly "moderated," you initially allowed a comment which you then painted as an attempt to "change the subject." Nobody forced you to post that comment. In fact, I already told you I didn't submit it to you at all; therefore, it appears that it was you who tried to change the subject, all the while blaming someone else. What a pathetic straw man!

Then, when I point out to you what should have been obvious to anyone who has an ounce of integrity, you ignore my real comments completely and call me a "troll."

You say at the beginning of your post that you "despise democracy." Then you paint the DPP as doing the same. By your own twisted logic, you should love the DPP. Unless, of course, the greatest reason for your hatred of democracy is that it allowed the people of Taiwan to chip away at your position of privilege and gain a small share of the wealth and power you and your pan-blue comrades were previously hogging all to yourselves.

Say, what? You still have a voice that can be heard?! So what do you use this voice to do? You make shit up and back it up with faulty logic!

Polls and editorials by pro-unification propaganda machines such as BS-TV and China Post don't even come close to representing democracy. These things aren't the same as democratic elections (where people are allowed to vote if they've reached a certain age, are non-felons, and meet other requirements such as citizenship), so don't treat them as such via this pathetic false analogy you use to "back up" your support for the recall of a president they have hated from the outset.

"Who's kidding whom?" Well, that would be you and your faithful readers.

You and your fellow pan-blue democracy-abusers contradict yourselves at every turn. While your logic leaves much to be desired, your virtual "hot air" sure is plentiful. Your writings contain reeking mounds of truthiness, but because they reveal so little actual truth, they're just pathetic.

So closing your comments won't change things a bit, because it's apparent that you don't give a flying fuck about what anyone else says.

The real Tim Maddog
What Chu said more specifically in his reply to the comment falsely submitted in my name was that "[Tim Maddog]'s trying to change the subject because he and his fellow Taiwan independence fellow travelers can't refute what I said." With the removal and blockage of some rather innocuous comments, he has made it abundantly clear that it's because he wouldn't let us then, and he won't let us now.

Bottom line: Since he refuses to be reasoned with, it's time to put Bevin Chu on your shitlist, too.

Some things considered: , , , , , ,

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Johnny Neihu commits journalistic suicide


The "NewsWatch" column in Saturday's edition of the Taipei Times began with its usual biting commentary, doing a good job at criticizing politicians in all ranges of Taiwan's spectrum. And then it turned and drove off of a cliff.

Here's where columnist Johnny Neihu goes horribly wrong:
[Premier Su Tseng Chang (蘇真昌)] told us on Wednesday that "If you turn off your TV and stop reading the newspapers, you will discover that Taiwan is still a liveable place and full of hope," before launching into what could only be described as a soliloquy in which he pined for the good ole days of government-controlled press.

Premier Su, what the hell were you thinking?


Taiwan's democracy is young, and so are the institutions that make up that democracy. Free media are part of those institutions, and like all of the rest, they are relative novices. The traditional role of the media in this society has been to distribute press releases. An important person says something, and the media reports it: That was how the game was played.

Now, things are different. Important people disagree with each other! Openly! It's social chaos! How are reporters supposed to know which important people to listen to? Which side of a story to report? Both sides can't be right, so most reporters solve that problem by reporting only one side. Problem solved.

I share Su's frustration with this state of affairs. But bad reporting does not justify government control of the media. Just let it go.

Which, apparently, is something the halfwits over at the Presidential Office are unable to do. Also on Wednesday, office Deputy Secretary-General Cho Jung-tai (卓榮泰) was full of piss and vinegar as he thundered against an item that showed up in the China Times, threatening legal action if the paper didn't apologize.

By making a public spectacle of a relatively minor and unimportant article, Cho ensured that everyone in the country now knows the allegations contained in the story, namely that the president tried to "blackmail" Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平).

Now, since this is supposed to have happened two years ago, and Wang has apparently moved on with life, why is it so important to the Presidential Office to challenge this story?

Who even cares whether or not it happened?

I mean, it isn't like the president has a sterling reputation at the moment. And really, the China Times story bit both ways, since what supposedly allowed the president to try and "blackmail" Wang was evidence of a scandal involving the speaker. So Chen's a thug and Wang's a crook.

So what? Most of our leaders were either or both, from dictator Chiang Kai-shek (將介石) to former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝). We're used to it.

Look, the media will say things that the people in power don't like and that are sometimes inaccurate -- or even just plain wrong.

The only way to stop them is by having a police state. China gives a pretty good example of how to do that.
Johnny Neihu is both inaccurate and just plain fucked-up
This is so wrong. Johnny Neihu, what the fuck are you smoking? Or did someone abduct the real Johnny and give him a lobotomy?

First, reporting only one side isn't necessarily a problem, but making shit up certainly is. As far as I can tell, Su Tseng-chang didn't say anything about returning to a "government-controlled press." If he had, I'm pretty sure the pan-blue media would be all over his ass 24-7. Instead, Johnny Neihu is doing their jobs for them.

A Friday article in the Chinese-language Liberty Times said that Premier Su referred to the China Times as being almost just like a "KMT party newspaper" and "not having a bit of common sense," but that doesn't sound anything like what Johnny Neihu claims he said. [If he did say it, please provide a quote, or point me in the direction of one. Until then, I can only assume that it defies common sense.]

If malice can be proven in a case like this, making shit up about people is also illegal. What happened here was that the China Times made libelous claims. Johnny Neihu's own paper, the Taipei Times told us on Friday that there was "nearly full-page coverage" in the China Times, not "a relatively minor and unimportant article." The Taipei Times also told us that even Wang Jin-pyng himself acknowledged that the story was untrue.

Even after President Chen asked for a retraction and an apology, the China Times repeated the lies, claiming that Wang had vindicated them.

That sounds pretty nonsensical to me.

A "police state" would have shut the China Times down, but that's not what happened. If the China Times were merely "inaccurate" or "wrong," they would have apologized. That didn't happen either.

Apathetics for... aw, forget it!
"Why bother?" Well, Johnny, not bothering gives them license to do it again. And again. And again. It's amazing that the DPP has only this week finally gotten around to forming a legal team to address this sort of problem. All I can say to that is "It's about fucking time!"

So "having a police state" is not the only way to stop them from making libelous accusations. Simple rule of law is.

Points of order: , , , , , , ,
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