Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

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Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

Legislative ‘reform’ populist assault

Less than a month into William Lai’s (賴清德) presidency, domestic politics saw dramatic turmoil over the legislature’s new reforms that would grant it expanded powers to investigate and question, with punitive force behind it. The controversial amendments are being contested for several reasons. The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) says it would seek a ruling from the Constitutional Court on the constitutionality of the bills.

The Constitutional Court is likely to be where the next battle over the reforms would be fought. Academia Sinica law institute research professor Su Yen-tu (蘇彥圖) warned against attempts to undermine the authority and trust in the grand justices, adding that it is a common tactic from the playbook of “authoritarian populists”: attacking independent or neutral institutions such as the media and the judiciary to exacerbate political polarization. As all of the serving grand justices were nominated by former president Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), it would be an easy vector of attack for the opposition to label them as biased.


Taiwan committed to self-defense: Lai

President William Lai (賴清德) yesterday emphasized Taiwan’s determination to defend itself and cooperate with other democracies to handle global challenges, in a meeting with former American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) chairman James Moriarty.

The nation is to continue strengthening its defensive capabilities and show its resolve to defend itself and democracy, he was cited as saying by the Presidential Office in a statement.

Taiwan would also maintain its cooperation with the US and other like-minded nations in dealing with global challenges posed by pandemics and climate change, he said.


Lessons leading to democracy 3.0

Montesquieu once noted that the full realization of a constitution demands that it is burned into the hearts and minds of every individual.

What a pity it is that due to certain historical factors of the political culture, Taiwan’s constitutional democracy bears all the markings of a representative democracy, and yet the path to its continued progress is plagued with obstacles. This is most recently evident from the blue and white camps’ aggressive pushing through of ill-thought out “reform” bills by dint of their slight legislative majority. In crisis comes opportunity, and we need only look to the Bluebird movement as an evolution of the Wild Lily and Sunflower movements.


Nvidia CEO sparks new interest in Taiwanese

Since Nvidia Corp chief executive officer Jensen Huang’s (黃仁勳) arrival in Taiwan on May 26, he has dominated headlines across multiple local news outlets. Rather than speaking English, he has been seen several times conversing with locals in Hoklo (commonly known as Taiwanese), a local language no longer commonly used by the public.

Due to his growing popularity and use of Hoklo, issues surrounding the preservation of native languages have resurfaced. Contrary to the stigmatizing belief that Hoklo is merely a language spoken by the uneducated, Huang’s actions have inspired many of his fans to revive their respective mother tongues.

Unfortunately, even if that momentum continues, there is still a long way to go to thoroughly protect endangered native languages.


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People attend a lunchtime flash mob rally in Hong Kong’s Cheung Sha Wan district yesterday.
Photo: AFP

Hong Kong police yesterday ended their blockade of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University campus after surrounding it for 12 days to try to arrest pro-democracy protesters holed up inside.