Back in Taiwan, Let the Writing Begin

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Thursday August 06, by Jerome F. Keating Ph.D.

As the song says, often "you don't know what you got till it's gone." This phrase was echoed by the husband of one of the two American journalists recently freed after being detained in North Korea. Conscious of that, I hope of course the people of Taiwan never have to utter that phrase in regard to their democracy and sovereignty even though many powers in the world seeking immediate monetary gain pressure the Taiwanese to give both their democracy and sovereignty up to placate China. Nevertheless I might add a corollary.

Sometimes you also find out more about what you have when you leave it for a while. I have been in the States for two weeks, visiting kids and grandkids and on a break from Taiwan matters but now I am back and find a lot has gone on, most of it negative. The restoration of the name of Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall - that memorial to the dead dictator who brought so many like sanctimonious beggars to Taiwan. The Act Governing the Administrative Impartiality of Public Officials - another seemingly beneficial act which in its vagueness allows a growing authoritarian state to try to squelch opposition. The growing problems with the Neihu MRT line, another reminder of the unproductive, incompetence of the eight years of Ma Ying-jeou as Mayor of Taipei etc. etc.

About the only good thing was the World Games in Kaohsiung pulled off with little help from the current administration. Well, I am back, so expect a lot of posts coming up as Taiwanese seek to establish their identity and protect their democracy and sovereignty in this chaotic world against numerous outside forces within and without.