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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, December 5, 2016

A negative response in the wake of President-Elect Trump’s phone call with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-Wen (蔡英文) could backfire. Such an educational, peaceful, and friendly phone call—clearing up an enormous misconception and even security concerns—deserves nothing less than praise. One harmless, little phone call encouraged millions of people in Asia to relax. Only an aggressor would object.

China did not directly or clearly protest. They did cordially make a “solemn representation” to remind the US of US-China relations and fired a handful of missiles—which they shoot off from time to time anyway. From China’s viewpoint, Beijing’s response was shrewd and defensible. Beijing is not rolling like any loose cannon so far.

The question that comes up, however, is about “Taiwanese Independence”. The Western press already paints Taiwan as “viewing itself as independent”, though Taiwan is nowhere close to inking any such opinion. On the books, Taiwan thinks it’s capital is deep in the heart of China and that Mongolia is a break-away province. Given the alternative, it would be magnanimous of China to welcome Taiwan discarding the current KMT-Nationalist definition of “one China” in exchange for anything, even “Taiwan Independence”; Mongolia might not take kindly to Beijing endorsing Taiwan’s out-dated view of the Mongols. Beijing is in a tight spot, and understandably so.

As much research documents, the Taiwanese people overwhelmingly already think of themselves as a nation-state and want the best of friendly relations with Beijing. Both the popular opinion and the offer for friendship are dangerous to reject.

The question of Taiwan Independence also has bearing on Hong Kong. While Beijing has done a much better job than Britain did—not to mention all the new Christians in Hong Kong since Britain left—the noise from Umbrella Movement paints Beijing as a regional killjoy. If Beijing wants the question of “Taiwanese Independence” to remain out-of-the-question, it has a tall order of PR work to do in the territory it already controls: Hong Kong.

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Encore of Revival: America, December 5, 2016

While Trump made headlines in Taiwan, Taiwan made headlines in the US. Despite attempts to educate the public about Taiwan over the last decade, the Western press still misunderstands Taiwan. But, it’s always endearing watching two strangers get acquainted.

Taiwan’s president, Tsai, also in her first year, was heavily concerned about Trump at first. In the end, it seemed she read too much about him in the Western newspapers—but all the gossip columns didn’t cause any damage that a simple phone call couldn’t clear up.

Taiwan is so innocent, almost childlike. In front of the world, loudly and often, top Taiwanese leadership gleefully admits that their conventional fears about Trump—common with the American Left—were all wrong. Talking to the actual man showed the truth. Taiwan’s “come to Jesus moment” over Trump is a message to all Americans—Christians, Atheists, Liberals, and Conservatives: Talk to each other.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, November 28, 2016

A government defining marriage only claims to be about marriage between humans, but it is actually about marriage between Church and State. By asking government to define human marriage, Americans have already returned to the Church of the Holy Government, which the pilgrims left in the early 1600’s.

Originally, both questions of marriage began in the West. Same-sex marriage is about to become legal in Taiwan. And, the Pope is about to strike a deal with Communist China.

A Bishop in Hong Kong, among others, objects to an agreement between the Chinese government and the Vatican because it would allow Beijing to vet Bishops how Beijing vets Hong Kong politicians. The results among Catholics might mirror the results among Hong Kongers. Interestingly, that bishop in Hong Kong already falls within the jurisdiction of both Beijing and the Vatican, just as much as he objects to both finding a union. Either he is incredibly insightful of both or incredibly foolish to make enemies with his unified superiors.

Bloomberg is focused on China’s military-based space expeditions. The thinkers think that China should teach Trump how to make America export again. Today, 10,000 people congregated outside Taiwan’s legislature in support of a law to recognize same-sex marriage, and the West barely noticed.

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Encore of Revival: America, November 28, 2016

Hillary’s involvement in a bid to recount the election results will lead to her indictment. Before, her indictment was in question. Perhaps Trump would be “magnanimous” and not persecute his political opponent. That would make sense since political retribution is a can of worms that few want to open—except perhaps Hillary. Then again, no one is sure what she wants from this post-concession recount.

Chris Wallace proved his dated journalism nose once again; he asked the wrong candidate about accepting election results. He really expected the tables to be reversed. He questioned Trump based on his speculation of the vote rather than on the character of the candidates.

Of course Hillary would contest the results after she conceded to them. From her retributive, venomous, retaliatory mode of operation—even with every indication of magnanimity from Trump—she thought surely she would be indicted because that’s what she would do. While some speculate that Hillary hopes to sow doubt about Trump’s legitimacy and stir chaos in the nation, she’s just a wolf trapped in a corner who doesn’t seem to know that she is driving nails into her own political coffin.

Michigan and Wisconsin both could see intervention from their own legislatures and State Supreme Courts. The States could determine that the request for a recount came too late to be completed before the electoral college meets. The US Supreme Court would be divided and bounce decisions back to the States. Other speculations include Congress choosing the President and Vice President, but it is doubtful to even get that far. The States are about to display their power. America’s adversaries will quietly watch and that will make them respect America more than anything we will read in the headlines over the next eight years.

Fidel Castro died at 90 years old. He even said goodbye at the most recent Communist Party Congress. Cubans celebrated in the streets of Miami while Black Lives Matter mourned.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, November 21, 2016

With TPP’s immanent floundering in the Pacific, China attempts to step into America’s shoes. But, those are big shoes to fill. As big of a deal as Asia thinks itself to be, any trade deal needs to include the Americas or it really isn’t worth writing headlines about—or even the agreement papers. China’s current proposal to replace TPP with a pure-Asia trade agreement is called “Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)”—again, with an introspective worldview evident in the name, not identifying which “region” is involved because the region is presumed by those in it. RCEP won’t even make a dent in the ocean.

Instead, Trump still dominates the headlines. Japanese President, Shinzo Abe thinks Trump is “trustworthy”. He met with the president elect at Trump Tower.

Other than Trump and trade, the rest of the news reset itself to stories questioning China’s economy. Metal is up for suspicious reasons. Apple isn’t that great and wasn’t going to be that great anyway. And, China is already spying on us through their cell phones. It almost seems that newspapers agree with Trump about having more mobile phones made in the USA.

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Encore of Revival: America, November 21, 2016

Liberal leaders’ ill preparation of their voters should be cause enough for suspicion. Ongoing disappointment is one of the best-kept secret evils of the two-party system. If Liberal leaders truly cared so much for their voters as their never ending empathy implies, they would have made sure that Liberal voters were ready for the inevitable losses associated with bipolar politics. But, they didn’t. Why?

Ill preparation from Liberal leaders isn’t the biggest cause for question.

The Republican compromisers in Congress over-reached. For decades, they have condescended and lectured their voters on “why having a majority means they must lose”. They didn’t seem to realize that, while Left-wing voters were sissified and setup for dismay this past election, Right-wing voters were strengthened and beat into confidence. As Tolkein writes of Morgoth, “his cunning overreached his aim; his words touched too deep, and awoke a fire more fierce than he designed.” Had the Republican Congress not passed so many Liberal laws on the Bush agenda–stiff FDA rules, the added bureaucracy of DHS, Common Core and centralized education, the Patriot Act, to name a few–the Religious Right would have gladly accepted his brother as the likely-to-lose nominee.

But, this raises the deeper question that Liberal voters also are just now considering: Why do Republican politicians, ostensibly controlled by so-called “Big Wall St. Money”, vote for Liberal ideas against the will of their voters? Wouldn’t that indicate that the so-called “Big Wall St. Money” wants Liberal things to happen? Given the evidence in plain sight, Liberal voters have every reason to question their own political talking points because those points all agree with “Big Wall St. Money”. It’s only a matter of time before they finish mourning their first failure and realize what they already knew.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, November 14, 2016

The news in Asia is Trump. Having put their chips with Clinton, some governments in Asia are scrambling to guess what Trump’s next move will be. Japan didn’t interfere. So, things are “business as usual” in Tokyo. While Asian politicians scramble to clean up their attempt to chose America’s next president, they still might not learn from Japan’s example: It is generally best if one country does not interfere with the elections of another country.

That election-country boundary is somewhat askew where Beijing and Hong Kong are concerned. Beijing is not supposed to interfere at all, as per the condition of the H-Kexit from Britain in 1997. Beijing did, however slightly and defensibly and yet predictably objectionable, and now Beijing must intervene.

Pro-Independence lawmakers inserted a byword for China in their oaths, which legally alters the oath. In doing so, they relegated their oaths’ legitimacy to the determination of higher courts in Beijing. If they couldn’t figure out how not to invite intervention, how could they keep domestic peace as lawmakers? If they didn’t know the legal meaning of words, how could they craft laws with proper wording in Hong Kong? Though unanswered at this time, these are questions their actions begged, making their argument for the second H-Kexit less credible, but, nonetheless more infamous and more famous, depending on who is asked. Infamy and fame gain equal press. “Press” is the battle HK Independence advocates win every time, which is why some in Hong Kong argue that “press” is all they want. But, there is always more going on.

In answering the metaphoric question of whether to be the dead lion or the victorious fox, the Hong Kong Umbrella students chose to be dead foxes. Some call them “martyrs”. Others call them “dinner”. The weakness and failings of disrespect aren’t limited to Hong Kong. The rest of the world is demonstrating the same toward Donald J. Trump, who did get elected after all. Now, Asia must figure out how to deal with the decision in the US while Trump figures out how to deal with the indecision of Asia. Unlike fame and infamy, decision and indecision fair differently.

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Encore of Revival: America, November 14, 2016

The hashtag #Calexit would be #Texit if the election had gone the other way. California and Texas already did secede once. Of course Washington would do something to stop it, we wouldn’t be dealing with Obama anymore. Secession is now on the table for real, thank you Californians. It’s only a matter of time. These are bad days for globalism.

Reince Priebus and Stephen Bannon will be great in the White House. Trump is the man who led and starred one of NBC’s most profitable shows, The Apprentice. He knows who to hire. This man, accused of being a woman-hating, homophobic racist has already hired KellyAnne Connway, Peter Thiel, and Dr. Ben Carson. The Anti-Trumpist retort is that they are examples of Trump operating in “rare form”.

Are the protesters in as much danger of Trump as they protest to being? Will Trump retaliate against NBC and other venomous enemies with an onslaught of IRS audits and the like? Historically, no because Trump is not a Democrat.

“Experts” in other countries, disparaged Democrat voters, members from the four corners of Congress, and media talking heads from the four corners of the moon—even Fox News Sunday and debate host extraordinaire Christopher Wallace—did not predict the 2016 US election outcome; Pacific Daily Times Editor in Chief and writer-narrator of this editorial, Jesse Steele, did in early February. The most widely-known prediction of Trump’s victory before Jesse Steele’s was from Richard Nixon’s wife, though Mrs. Nixon didn’t make a map.

A few polls got it right. Khali at Trafalgar polling found a way to get the truth from “shy” Trumpist Conservatives who think they can’t tell the truth to pollsters: “Who is your neighbor voting for?” It’s interesting how we tend to think that our neighbors think how we think.

In their ever-shifting opinions and speculations about Trump, so-called “experts” of 20/20 hindsight who park their pedestals among aftermath should cite their more accurate election maps published before February. As usual, if you read it here, you read it here first, at Pacific Daily Times.

The divide in America is between the archetypal city mice and country mice. The country mice need land to make things in factories and grow food on farms; the city mice manage the market’s business on less and more costly land, all the while consuming the fat of the land they rarely visit. Like a saddle and a horse, a saddle helps, but bareback is an option while a saddle ridden on the fence goes nowhere.

The two are naturally polarized and out of touch with each other; they have formed political right and left extremes. The country mice want production and renaissance while the city mice want fashion and manners. Being a “moderate” in the city-country conflict surmounts to mixing coffee with orange juice at breakfast—both are great, but they need different cups.

As for the controversy of the electoral college, it resurfaces in every presidential election as if it has just surfaced for the first time: It’s a newbie voter’s topic. The basic purpose is, in the event of a very close margin of city mice v country mice, the country mice will win because the country can’t function without the rural backbone. This is why a State gets just two extra votes just for being a State, and all that comes with it. This is why Alaska contributed 3 Republican votes, not just 1, and Hawaii and New Hampshire contributed each 4 Democrat votes, not just 2. That said, there have been no certified reports on how much of Clinton’s 260k vote lead came from illegal voting. We do know that Democrats openly object to measures that prevent illegal voting while moderate Republicans claim to oppose illegal voting, with little or no action to back up that claim. The policies, both actual and claimed, of both Democrats and Republicans brought the vote to what it was.

Pro-Lifers should be glad abortion will likely end. That was the biggest and most lasting direct result of this election, which many people have not realized, yet if ever. Perhaps Religious Right Conservative Christian Anti-Trumpist lamenters could learn a thing or two about gratitude from Liberal Democratic Anti-Trumpist protesters. Trump has managed to inspire shared hashtags for these Conservatives and Liberals. They might actually talk to each other now. That could be a longer-lasting, less direct result of this election. The way has been paved for The People’s Party.

The massive protests against Trump are the result of the country’s public education policies since the 1990’s. Students are given a trophy for showing up and recognition of winners and losers in sports is outright persecuted. Nannying and sissifying young people left the generation of first-time voters ill-prepared to deal with loss. While neither Conservative nor Liberal youth have had much experience training them to deal with the emotions of “losing” something, Conservative parents were more likely to prepare them at home for the things that school neglected. If nothing else, Conservative first-time voters had their first eight years of voting to learn to deal with loss; the Democrats did not.

There would have been protests of some kind either way. These protests are more of a “nasty” nature, involving destruction of private property with little legislative result. Had the election gone the other way, riots would have been replaced with larger, more peaceful, and yet more effective protests. Secession petitions would have been legitimate enough to provoke Congress, involve the Supreme Court, and surely military action, citing Clinton corruption and excess executive orders that Trump promised to undo. This election was somewhat of a “deal”: Get back inside the Constitutional boundaries or rip it up; the electors chose to get back inside the lines, for now. California and Texas will secede eventually, but that will require the “don’t get mad, get busy” action of sobriety and will happen only after elections and wars yet to come.

Contrary to some opinions floating around the “media-osphere”, there actually is a Constitutional basis for secession, though not stated directly. The Federal government is obligated to repel invasion, according to original Article IV. If the US is ever invaded, State secession will be as Constitutional as it is inevitable. The topic California brought up implies a warning to US enemies: Invading the United States at home would not be an act of war against one country, but against fifty. While secession is coming, let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. The president elect still has not taken office, the electoral college has not voted, and the results of many States have not yet been certified by their election authorities. While some things are foreseeable from the vantage point of history, history informs foresight while the two remain separate.

The earthquakes had the final and poetic word after “US election week”: Both sides of the Pacific were shocked and shaken, and, more poetically, the shock in Christchurch started a tsunami.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, November 7, 2016

China had been doing so well. Hong Kong had one of the best democratic systems of representation in the world—allowing a plurality of representatives to be elected in each legislative district. Since the Crown left Hong Kong, the number of newspapers went from three to countless. Hong Kong became a world city, dearly loved from the four corners of the world.

Then, it all changed.

The decline began with a natural sentiment against status quo. That wasn’t enough by itself. China, having possessed Hong Kong for just over 15 years, declared that politicians would be vetted for being pro-China in advance. That was the first clue.

Foreseeable anger was ignited by likely influence from media mogul Jimmy Lia—who to this day captured some of the best photojournalism of protests he likely created. The “Umbrella Movement” started as a face, but was given a name when police used pepper spray, provoking the crowds to respond with umbrellas. The Western media’s influence can’t be ruled out, but neither can many factors.

Latest episodes of the ongoing Hong Kong drama included the recent elections. A few students from the Umbrella Movement protests were running. A number of pro-Independance candidates were not allowed to run after Hong Kong mandated a pro-China affidavit signed in advance—and the election office could decide if the signers were “sincere”. Two Umbrella students seemed to get past the process and were elected, but not allowed to take their oaths. This week, after turmoil, disruption, and well-covered attention from international press, the State-run People’s Daily declares that they should never take their oaths. Beijing will decide next week. Beijing also removed Hong Kong’s minister of finance, Lou Jiwei, 66.

The argument against pro-Independence legislators is rooted in the Basic Law, a kind of Constitution for Hong Kong. The Basic Law states that Hong Kong is part of China. All laws are open to request for review. China and India both did with Britain. But, in this situation, there is no distinction explained as to the right or wrong way Hong Kongers may ask to seceded. It’s all either forced or just not allowed.

Beijing miscalculated. Free people, such as in Hong Kong and much of the West, must be governed and laws must be controlled. Things work reverse of that way in China. Perhaps China’s control of Hong Kong would have gone better had there been a powerful British advisory envoy to help China understand the newly acquired anomaly called Hong Kong SAR. But, the Chinese don’t like to take advice and the British don’t like to give it.

Hong Kong could have been happy without changes. But no one liked status quo, not the people, not even Beijing, and arguably not the Crown. The question remains unanswered: Was it Beijing’s goal to incite Hong Kongers to rise up by vetting people before rather than reviewing laws after? Or, was it the Crown’s goal to allow China to irritate the dragon by not training Beijing how to ride it yet handing over the reigns? Was it all a plot from the Western press who just want to sell newspapers? Or, is it all some alien plot managed from a secret extraterrestrial base on the moon? All possibilities remain equally on the table since we don’t really know what’s actually going on.

It is unlikely that China wanted Hong Kong to break down. It was one of the best things China had going. Hong Kong won’t be the same. Change is coming before China promised and before Britain required, one way or another.

Hong Kong didn’t see the only shuffle in the Western Pacific. Taiwan was booted from Interpol. The guesses as to that hidden hand and its motive are much less vague than guesses about Hong Kong’s.

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Encore of Revival: America, November 7, 2016

This was the week of chest-thumping before the election. Mass media make their last-minute poll corrections to make it look “close” so that no matter who wins the media can maintain polling credibility. The FBI has gone Agnostic on Hillary. Comey’s metaphoric beat-up, dead horse resurrected himself to shoot himself in the foot; Comey’s career that he had finished is now finished, finished.

A single mother of six could end up in prison for selling food. How dare she! She put the public at risk, and insulted all the companies that pay big, big money to sell food to three people. It would have been safer to sell State secrets without a license. Hillary’s use of her maid to print classified documents doesn’t speak to her disdain for rules of the “top secret” road as much as it speaks to her attitude of superiority. A maid is “too much beneath” her to matter—you don’t try to keep classified information from your dog. More over, protection of the public good isn’t important either—who cares if the Russians discover secrets of sheep and cattle while the dog was fetching documents for the farm.

As for State secrets and ironies, if the US government really was planning a classified cyberattack against Russia they wouldn’t tell NBC News. Notwithstanding that leaking a story is usually best done with a network that is viewed by the public more than foreign governments, leaking “classified stories of a deterrent in the making” is just another strategy of deterrence. Perhaps such “classified leak story” games confused Hillary. Never believe the TV when it says what one government might be planning against another—especially if they say “might“. That’s just governments using non-diplomatic channels of undiplomatic diplomacy. In the East, they call it “State media control”; in America, Congress publicly called it “Operation Blue Book”. For the record, the story didn’t only air on NBC, it was also picked up by Breitbart, which is banned at Pacific Daily Times for having websites that take too long to load. The Blaze is also banned for this reason.

Note that when NBC and Breitbart break the same story, something is amiss. The actual secret that got out with the “Russia, we’re having our media tell you you’d better not interfere with our election” story is that the US government is very set on making sure that the election happens. We already knew that. Not citing their reason for the extra caution indicates that the problem probably came from within; but, that is historically anecdotal. We don’t know the deep reason the government has been making grunts about ensuring that the election happens two months out. That is the actual secret, proving that classified measures are still functioning. The election will happen. So, most people won’t even notice the efforts to make it happen. They are too busy being obsessed with which candidate they hate.

No one notices the real danger: Paul Ryan, who has managed to go from a failed-attempted second-in-line to a successful third-in-line, all while convincing the public that he opposes the very candidate who will grant his closet Liberal party a super-majority. No one notices, though. The voters are too busy being obsessed with which candidate they hate.

Everything we see in the media looks to be orchestrated. Comey demonstrates the powerful non-decision making of Allen Greenspan. Maybe he wants to be the Chairman of the Fed. WikiLeaks didn’t throw an October Surprise, they threw an October Schedule. The government does interviews in media to help the election succeed? The media finally now reports on Clinton problems that have been known for decades? People need a break from all these scheduled surprises. At this point, it’s best to stop talking about the election, go vote, and then get back to work.

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