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Why I'm Glad the Weekend is Over
媒体来源: 中国法律博客

Mostly because I'm looking forward to some real news to read. The past few days has been painfully boring, although some of the news from Copenhagen has been entertaining (more on that later today).

So what were the local papers reporting on this weekend? Everything and anything about Macau.

Yes, that's right. It was all Macau, all day and night. At one point, out of boredom and frustration, I started to bang my head against the wall repeatedly. This of course only succeeded in convincing one of our cats that this was a new game in which to engage. He had fun swiping at my face (claws retracted, thankfully) every time my cranium connected with the wall.

Why so much Macau coverage? This was a coordinated media blitz to commemorate the ten-year anniversary of the handover of the territory to the PRC. Rah rah, yahoo, three cheers, and all that.

Yeah, rather a yawner.

I only found two things of passing interest in the Macau goings-on:

1. Humorous — If I was writing a novel about Macau, and I needed to create the perfect name for its Chief Executive, I would probably choose something with a Portuguese-Guangdong-ish flair. In Hong Kong, that name could be something like Simon Lam or Aloysius Lee.

For Macau, I would undoubtedly think of a name like . . . Fernando . . . Chui.

I was therefore quite amused to learn that yes, Fernando Chui was just sworn in as Macau's Chief Exec. I wonder if he got the job just because of his name?

2. Serious — All of this Macau coverage was no accident, the ten-year anniversary notwithstanding. No, there are actually some rather sensitive bilateral (can I use the term 'bilateral' without getting this post blocked?) talks between the PRC and Taiwan going on right now.

The Macau coverage has been the PRC's way of telling Taiwan that the whole "One Country, Two Systems" thing really works, and by the way you best fall into line on these negotiations. This is a positive/hopeful use of propaganda, and much nicer than the usual political mau mauing that goes on.

Just to be clear, this is from Chui's official speech yesterday:

We will make sure the great cause of 'one country, two systems' will be carried on from generation to generation.

We have been unswervingly implementing the principle of 'one country, two systems", under which the Macao people govern Macao with a high degree of autonomy, and the Basic Law of the SAR."

(That last bit about autonomy was added by a helpful China Daily reporter.)

China Daily also ran an editorial on the U.S.'s Taiwan policy and why it is unsustainable, written by a guy from the China Academy of Social Science. I don't think I need to tell you that an editorial from a CASS guy on a sensitive subject like this is not usually done as a lark.

The editorial itself argues that since the US and China have essentially been working together to stifle Taiwan independence for a number of years, and since the US needs Beijing's assistance on a number of global issues, the US might as well just throw in completely behind the PRC on this matter.

I'm fine with that, but the writer is either being purposely ignorant or doesn't understand American politics that well (I assume the former – the article is not really a feasible policy pronouncement). Any attempts to modify the U.S.'s Taiwan policy in favor of the PRC would result in a serious shitstorm for the present administration – Democrats can't appear to be 'soft' on a 'Communist' country without appearing weak and Jimmy Carter-ish (i.e. the Democrats are scared pussies that can't handle someone accusing them of being weak on national defense issues).

What's more likely on Taiwan is that all current policies will remain in place, yet all the previous nonsense about weapons sales will be substantially discontinued. That would be a very good thing, in my mind, for everyone involved. However, since that would result in lower profits for the American defense industry, further weapons sales wouldn't shock me.

Anyway, I suspect that we won't be seeing any wall-to-wall Macau coverage in the Chinese papers for a long time. I hope you enjoyed it while it lasted.

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