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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

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The next logical step for Taiwan?

Remove that thing from public places, or...

On the morning of Tuesday, May 26, 2009, Taipei City councilor Chuang Ruei-hsiung (莊瑞雄) and a couple of his colleagues climbed the scaffolding surrounding Taipei's Jingfu Gate (景福門) and covered the Chinese Nationalist Party's (KMT) emblem with white paint. The KMT symbol had been painted -- in grand dictatorial fashion -- on the historical monument on or around May 18, one day after hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets to protest the pro-China, anti-Taiwan policies of president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) and his party.

Jingfu Gate corrected after being defaced by the KMT
Jingfu Gate is corrected (left) after being defaced by the KMT government (far right)
Screenshot from SET's (三立新聞) Talking Show (大話新聞)
(Click to enlarge)

A bridge in Yonghe City (Taipei County) has also been recently decorated with publicly-funded golden horses, mirroring Ma's family name (Ma [馬] means "horse"). The bridge has nine arches, and "nine" (九) is the third word in Ma's name. Talk about a culture of flattery!

Kissing Ma's ass from every angle
Kissing Ma's ass from every angle
Screenshot from SET's (三立新聞) Talking Show (大話新聞)
(Click to enlarge)

On May 20, 2009, state-owned Taiyen (台鹽) put bottled water on the market with a jogger on the label, reflecting one of the activities Ma is best-known for. It came in 520 ml bottles, reflecting Ma's inauguration date (5/20/2008). After Ma got in office, Kuo Su-chun's (郭素春) husband Hung Hsi-yao (ph) (洪璽曜) became the company's chairman. Kuo is (in-)famous for shouting 「 選舉無效!」 ("Annul the election!") alongside sore loser Lien Chan (連戰) before the riots began. Could there be a connection between these things? Hmmmm...

A humid homage to the Great Jogger, Ma Ying-jeou
A humid homage to "the Great Jogger," Ma Ying-jeou
Screenshot from SET's (三立新聞) Talking Show (大話新聞)
(Click to enlarge)

And in conjunction with the anniversary of Ma's inauguration, public funds were spent by the state-owned Taiwan Tobacco and Liquor Company (TTL, 台灣菸酒公司) on a newspaper ad praising Ma for his "erudition" (博學), "extraordinary ability" (宏才), and "love of Taiwan." Doesn't that make you sick?

Your money paid for this propaganda
Your money paid for this propaganda
Screenshot from SET's (三立新聞) Talking Show (大話新聞)
(Click to enlarge)

Or did you hear about the fountain in Beitou -- costing around NT$30 MILLION -- with a design that looks like the KMT's party emblem? (That article is in Chinese, but even if you can't read it, go there to see the image.)

And don't forget the article about "Sunny (as in 'positive'), healthy Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou" in the children's publication, Mandarin Daily News (國語日報). NOTHING of this sort happened during former president Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) eight years in office -- a time in which KMT (as part of a neverending smear campaign) constantly called Chen a "dictator" and a "populist." Ma has been in office for exactly one year and six days so far, and look what we get. It's "拍馬屁" in the extreme.

What now?
First, tattoo the above incidents onto your brain with a friggin' laser beam. The next time something similar happens, you will be able to recite them by heart to everyone you talk to.

But if you get creative, there are other ways to deal with this kind of situation.

One way would be to get rid of all such emblems, and that would look something like this:

The flag of the ROC, the only one Taiwan has, with a slight variation of the KMT emblem
I know, I know. There's a slight difference between the KMT's party emblem and the knockoff they call the "national emblem," but if the two emblems were the topic of a trademark infringement lawsuit, somebody's ass would get sued into the ground.
(Click to enlarge)

... or we could put them everywhere. Here's a good place:

Piss on Ma and the KMT
Modification of an Olivier Morin/Agence France-Presse — Getty Image
(Click the above image to enlarge)
(See what the original image looked like)

Mr. Chang from Kaohsiung suggests "Ma Ying-jeou toilet tissue," and he has a variation of the idea you see being carried out in the above image:


0:44 YouTube video: "Flush Ma Ying-jeou down your toilet"

UPDATE: From the June 9, 2009 edition of the Liberty Times (自由時報) comes this article about someone putting KMT party emblem stickers in urinals in Taichung's Chungshan Park (中山公園):

Stickers bearing the KMT party emblem are seen stuck inside of two urinals
Liberty Times photo by 蘇金鳳
公廁貼黨徽 「方便」也能表不滿
Translation: Stickers bearing the [KMT] party emblem appear in public restroom --
"taking a leak" can also express your dissatisfaction
(Click to enlarge)

[/update]

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Cross-posted at It's Not Democracy, It's A Conspiracy!

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5 Comments:

At 4:54 AM, Blogger Valerio said...

Dear Tim,

I disagree with your encouragement by saying the "Jingfu Gate is corrected after being defaced by the KMT government".

Without needing to take political sides, I think history should be preserved, and the KMT's past doing, good or bad, should be preserved as is.

The member's of parliament should be making legislation and lawfully championing people's wishes, not deface/change/enhance public property.

I am hoping they will be prosecuted for their juvenile like behaviour.

 
At 9:39 AM, Blogger Arthur Dent said...

Dear Valerio,

The Jingfu Gate dates back to the Qing Dynasty when there was no Chinese Nationalist Party or ROC. The emblems themselves were added to the gate in 1966 when the gate was restored. Therefore, the history that you think should be preserved is only 40 years old, much like the 43 year old Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall and the 29 year old CKS memorial Hall. I too think history should be preserved so I would like to see the original Jingfu gate sans ROC imagery. On the other hand, I agree that the legislator acted ultra-vires but then so did the KMT and the refurbishers when they decided to try and falsely link the ROC to the Qing dynasty in Taipei people's minds by crudely painting a star on it. I too am hoping for a prosecution, of KMT officials who have plundered and embezzled billions of dollars from this country, Taiwan, on their egos, mistresses and fighting the civil war with the CCP at the expense of Taiwanese.

 
At 10:37 AM, Blogger Robert R. said...

Preserving history is all well and good, but which slice? The gates are older than the KMT emblem, and even though they were deemed heritage sites after the emblems were painted, it was still during the authoritarian era.

 
At 12:15 PM, Blogger Michael Turton said...

Valerio, the gate was defaced by the KMT after they came, a common pattern with old monuments in Taiwan. In addition to stamping the KMT sign everywhere, they also scratched out Japanese inscriptions of historical importance, knocked down old Japanese temples, renamed memorials from the Japanese period, and so on.

All this public property was defaced by the KMT.

The gate should be restored to its Qing Dynasty status. The DPP councillors were making a political point and engaging in political protest.

Michael

 
At 3:35 PM, Blogger Tim Maddog said...

Arthur D., Robert R., Michael T., thanks for the fact-filled commentary. You guys beat me to the punch, so to speak.

What I was going to write (but delayed because I wanted to double-check the facts after I got some sleep) was...

Valerio, Jingfu gate -- having been built in 1879 -- was around for approximately 33 years before the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) was even founded.

Therefore, the KMT did not "preserve" anything by painting their emblem on it.

The KMT did, in fact, deface it by doing so, both in 1966 (~87 years after its construction) and again in 2009.

How can someone like you -- who makes comments without knowing the facts (or perhaps just thinks that others don't know) -- determine who should be prosecuted and for what?

Tim Maddog

 

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