"Taiwan, Province of China"

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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby Gao Bohan » 16 Feb 2011, 23:28

You repeatedly state that until Taiwan asserts its independence, it remains a province of China. That seems to me a false choice. The options are not limited to "Taiwan, Province of China" and "Taiwan, Fully Independent Nation". Taiwan is not a province of China in any tangible sense of the word, but it has not declared its independence for obvious reasons. If the status of Taiwan is not "undetermined", then that word has no meaning in a geopolitical context.
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby tommy525 » 17 Feb 2011, 02:02

Muzha Man wrote:
tommy525 wrote:
Muzha Man wrote:
tommy525 wrote:Most Taiwanese want to differentiate themselves from the Chinese in China but many do consider themselves to be Chinese in origin, even if in fact some of their genealogy is taiwanese aborigine.

Not all want a nation of Taiwan, but most do I think.


That is no different from modern Tibet, where large numbers of people who are benefitting from Chinese investment want to remain part of China. Not everyone challenges Chinese sovereignty over Tibet and this is also true historically.


Additionally, Tibetans are not ethnically Han AFAIK ? While the Taiwanese largely are.


I think I was responding to a different post. In any case, is Taiwan to be a race-based political entity? I hope not or there is no place for people like me, nor the tens of thousands of SE Asian brides and their offspring, not the 3% aboriginals, nor the assimilated Pingpu, etc, etc.

Be that as it may, things are very different from when you grew up here. The majority now consider themselves Taiwanese and not Chinese. Not that it matters. Vancouver is about 50% Asian but this doesn't mean my hometown is in danger of being annexed.


Not saying that it should be race based of course not, Taiwan is rapidly changing. I was just stating the current ethnic make-up. The Tibetans rather hate the Chinese.
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby tommy525 » 17 Feb 2011, 02:08

By the way, the people of Taiwan most certainly consider themselves a nation even if they may struggle a bit with how "chinese" they are and what their nation should be called. But by and large the populace is going about their business just like citizens of a nation do. They are usually happy to call their nation Taiwan and quietly acknowledge that they are also known as the Rep of China. Most Taiwanese are well aware of the history of the island of the last 100 years and know that the rest of the world largely does not consider it a nation. They have overcome many of the dis-advantages this brings. LIke difficulties of getting visas to other nations.A lot of places are now granting visa free to Taiwanese passport holders (ROC passport holders to be precise). And most other places grant visas without too much ado.

Taiwanese know they are not considered a nation by many other nations but it doesnt bother them all that much most of the time, because many of the hurdles have been overcome. They can travel most anywhere and can trade with most any nation.
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby Herodotus » 17 Feb 2011, 03:09

Gao Bohan wrote:You repeatedly state that until Taiwan asserts its independence, it remains a province of China. That seems to me a false choice. The options are not limited to "Taiwan, Province of China" and "Taiwan, Fully Independent Nation". Taiwan is not a province of China in any tangible sense of the word, but it has not declared its independence for obvious reasons. If the status of Taiwan is not "undetermined", then that word has no meaning in a geopolitical context.


Actually, I think it has meaning only in a geopolitical context, particularly where two definite groups lay claim to sovereignty over a given population or area. In that respect, Taiwan is claimed by the PRC and the ROC.

My bone of contention is the claim that Taiwan is a country. If it is not, Taiwan cannot be "undetermined"; it is what it acquiesces to, namely being a province of China administered by the ROC. As I argued before, I regard Tibet as a country, not because it is independent, but because the Tibetans have asserted their nationhood.

The only way to know if a population is a country is to ascertain and measure their will. Our democratic habits make us think that the popular will can simply be measured by a poll, but that is not how nations are formed. Their will cannot be counted; it must be weighed, not as a matter of principle, but of simple necessity. Whether it achieves "fully independent statehood" depends on victory, which rests on some kind of force; whether the people should be regarded as a country or nation depends on nothing more than the assertion of their collective will to be recognized as such. In a free political system, that will can be expressed at the ballot box. In a situation such as Egypt's or Taiwan's that will can be expressed in alternative ways. Gandhi marched to the sea and made salt. He defied the status quo. That is simply not being done here. If Taiwan were filled with the spirit of national independence, there would be some nut doing something absolutely desperate and foolhardy to gain recognition for his cause. A Taiwanese flag of some kind would have been smuggled on to Tiananmen Square. There would be a mass letter-writing campaign to the UN or to Beijing or to Washington or to Santa Claus. Somebody would be boycotting something. Somebody would be getting themselves thrown in jail somewhere, even a nasty Chinese jail.

That is how these things happen.

The absence of these signs makes me very doubtful about the existence of a Taiwanese nation. If you want to be rich, you can be Warren Buffett or you can play the lottery. So far, the bid for Taiwanese independence looks like the latter: let's take a shot, you never know, we might get lucky. Then justify it by saying, there's always next time, the game was rigged, I think I'm starting to get the hang of it. Then everybody goes back to what they were doing: business with China.

I don't blame them for that approach; I just take it as a sign that the question of Taiwanese nationality is not a real priority. When it is, then I think as democrats, we will all bear some responsibility in recognizing and assisting the Taiwanese people. But, the approach that pro-independence folks prefer, get the foreigners to recognize Taiwan before the Taiwanese do--I think it's a non-starter. It's like a would-be Egyptian protester calling up the military on the night of January 24 and saying, 'we're gonna go have it out with the police, and we just want to make sure you're not going to take their side', and only then deciding to take to the streets. Perfectly logical, and perfectly unrealistic and counterproductive.

That's not how the democratic movement in Taiwan started. Granted that Taiwan has got a raw deal, why should foreigners take the claim of Taiwanese independence more seriously than the Taiwanese themselves do?
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby tommy525 » 17 Feb 2011, 03:26

You are correct there does not currently exist a "Taiwanese" nation. And the DPP is and has been struggling to make a "Taiwanese" nation and remains a spearhead for this movement.

However, the populace currently residing on the island of Taiwan have largely come to terms with the fact that they are citizens of an internationally unrecognized entity called the Republic of China. An entity that overthrew the last Chinese dynasty and once ruled China and ruled Taiwan with an iron fist for decades but also brought progress and prosperity to the island's peoples. An entity that is a political pariah in danger of extinction within the next hundred years (if that) but one that has now recognized that it no longer has control over the mainland of China and has dropped its former national directive to retake the mainland of China. An entity that is now in fact, only administering the island of Taiwan and her associated islands and rocks.

Roughly half of the islands current populace support the KMT and by virtue the "mythical" Republic of China (which has no real China in it cept its name, much like China Airlines for decades unable to fly to the actual China).

The other half support an independent in name (rather then just in fact) nation officially divorced from anything to do with the name China. However, this group realizes that Taiwan is facing a HUGE , nay HUMONGOUS threat in the form of latter day China.

The only way without war seems to be to reach an understanding, a rapproachment with this potential Killer Empire.

If only one can trust the CCP. Trusting the CCP was tried once before by the KMT to little success. But now the CCP would rather deal with a devil she knows then one she hates (aka the DPP).

Hence back to square one. The status of Taiwan remains "undefined" and "undetermined" and volatile and has the potential (albeit slight) to ignite a final war of mankind.
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby ABC » 22 Feb 2011, 12:39

finley wrote:Maybe this one belongs in the 'pet peeves' thread, but here it is:

I am completely sick of websites which ask you to select your country from a list and give this ridiculous option for Taiwan residents. Whatever your opinion on Taiwan's status, it's a real country (according to Frank Zappa's definition, anyway) and it's entitled to at least choose it's own name, which to most people is simply "Taiwan", with no political overtones. AFAIK not even the Chinese Communist Party refers to us as "Taiwan, Province of China" (I imagine they try not to talk about us at all). So why the hell does every english-speaking website use this stupid phrase? Where are they getting their country list from?

I'm not even talking about government websites. Only a few governments worldwide officially accept the 'One China' policy anyway. It's all and sundry. 50% of the time, I email and complain; so far the only positive response I got was from a Canadian government department. The others don't even respond.

I even had one Website simply change my free-text location (Taiwan) into "China". I whinged and they changed it to (surprise!) "Taiwan, Province of China".

What can we do about annexation by craven foreign consent? It's really starting to piss me off.


I do not see why you have to be that annoyed by something as minor as how Taiwan is listed on websites. It's just some information you click on when filling out some stupid internet forms. Just click on it, get it over with, and then forget about it. It's not going to kill you whether Taiwan is listed as "Taiwan", "Taiwan, province of China", "Chinese Taipei", or some other name. So why bother get riled up over it?
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby finley » 22 Feb 2011, 13:04

ABC wrote:I do not see why you have to be that annoyed by something as minor as how Taiwan is listed on websites. It's just some information you click on when filling out some stupid internet forms. Just click on it, get it over with, and then forget about it. It's not going to kill you whether Taiwan is list as "Taiwan", "Taiwan, province of China", "Chinese Taipei", or some other name. So why bother get riled up over it?


Oh, I know, I know - it's petty. And I should really get a life. I try :)

However ... there were two reasons. Firstly, I wasn't really talking about those forms where they're just making you fill out forms for the hell of it. I mean mailing addresses. I don't want something saying "China" on it any more than a resident of Puerto Rico would like to see an address label written as "Puerto Rico, province of the USA". It's just stupid. It implies the place is on the USA mainland.

Secondly, it bothers me when countries that bellow about democracy and freedom are quite prepared to bend over and ask China how they want it - even over something as utterly trivial as a country name. I find this bothersome. I don't like China. I've been there and I like it even less. It scares the crap out of me, on many many different levels. So an incorrect country name won't kill me? I'm not so sure. How long will it be before China notices that they can do whatever the fuck they want and nobody will even whimper, just so long as the factories keep turning out the plastic tat and Chinese nouveau-riche airheads keep buying Louis Vuitton bags? So it would be nice to see my home country, and others, which thump their chests on the stage about all the good things they stand for, at least occasionally telling China to behave like grownups ... even if, again, it's only over something utterly trivial and unimportant.

Incidentally, I just wrote to a website (as another poster suggested) asking them politely to change the mailing-address country selection to "Taiwan" and they refused. Why? They're a commercial concern. They don't give a rat's left bollock what the Chinese government thinks. I can't help wondering if they get people from the PRC writing irate letters to them pointing out that Taiwan is part of China and they'd better make it damn clear on their website. Bigger sales in the PRC; therefore the PRC gets the last word. And that's what riles me.
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby ABC » 22 Feb 2011, 14:14

So if this issue is all very trivial and unimportant, then why should other countries care about it? That's the question I want to ask. You say it's trivial and unimportant, yet it obviously bothers you a lot and you want other countries to raise a ruckus over it, I mean this just doesn't make sense. Unless, of course the issue is actually NOT trivial to you and you have the same philosophical objections like the people who are for Taiwan independence have.

And are you really surprised that companies have financial interests to look after? Come on. Of course they do. Doing what you think is right isn't going to put money in the bank.
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby maoman » 22 Feb 2011, 14:17

ABC wrote:I do not see why you have to be that annoyed by something as minor as how Taiwan is listed on websites. It's just some information you click on when filling out some stupid internet forms. Just click on it, get it over with, and then forget about it. It's not going to kill you whether Taiwan is listed as "Taiwan", "Taiwan, province of China", "Chinese Taipei", or some other name. So why bother get riled up over it?

If that were the case, then Americans shouldn't be upset if they were listed as an annexed territory of Canada. So what if it isn't true? Why bother getting riled up about it? Just fill out the bloody form, right? We all accept that personal dignity is important. People understand that some people are sensitive about slights to their favourite sports teams. Why do you think national dignity is exempt from things that people care about?

ABC wrote:Doing what you think is right isn't going to put money in the bank.

But doing what you think is right is always the right thing to do. :thumbsup:
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Re: "Taiwan, Province of China"

Postby Mucha Man » 22 Feb 2011, 14:23

Companies have their interests and one of those is keeping customers happy. With China about as popular in the west these days as a wet turd I think now is the perfect time to play the angry customer who wants Taiwan's status to be made clearly distinct from China's. Or do you really think that Amazon.com for example gets most of its orders from China and needs to be sensitive to that customer base? :loco:
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