Actually, I think China Times may have picked up the story from power TV news since their article is littered with “according to our understanding”. Also, in the interest of accuracy, I think there was one foreigner who helped organize the event. I read Quirky’s post, but I am pretty sure that there are no legislators involved as of yet, just two city council members who seemed awfully well prepared for their crazed verbal attacks on the Hwashan people for the tv cameras on Sunday. I also did not hear any mention of all foreigners being drug users or racial profiling on the the news I watched. If I have time tomorrow, I will try to translate the China Times article, which would be pretty comical if not for its future ramifications.
Please see my post in legal matters.
If you are interested in helping with the protest, we could use your input.
We are launching a protest and my friend will have a press conference at Huashan.
There is a meeting tonight at 9 p.m. to identify what aspects of the China Times report were incorrect (i.e. classifying a bonfire/drum jam as a RAVE PARTY and making it sound like foreigners invaded a public art space).
A-liang and Friends.
B1 #15 Alley 345 Lane 15
RenAi Road Section 4.
You can enter YanJi Road from RenAi and turn left on the second alley at the Nico mart. The place is on your right.
leave a post in the Legal Matters section if you intend to come, so I can get an idea how many people are interested.
Don’t just get but get and take action!
More than anything else, this a a crystal-clear relection of the sorry state of affairs that local journalism is in. Period.
My Taiwanese girlfriend was there, too. She is very angry about the misrepresentation of what happened at the party. The media are saying that the police intentionally did not patrol the area in order to give the “hundreds of drug-crazed foreigners” a free hand to debauch themselves. According to my girlfriend, the cops came round three times and were chatting to the people attending the event.
Now here is the important bit. My girlfriend told me that some people have their eyes on the piece of real estate now occupied by the Huashan cultural centre. One of them is the local ward leader (lizhang.) So they are trying to discredit Huashan in order to get their hands on the land. Since my girlfriend is a DPP member with quite a lot of connections in both cultural and political circles, I think she knows what she is talking about.
Juba’s girlfriend is the ecstasy-popping dope fiend Presbyterian DPP member in the middle
I find the xenophobic tone in this incident very disturbing. If these DPP councilors are wipping up anti-foreign sentiment just to get their hands on a bit of land, then it is really a disgrace. I hope the English-language newspapers will help to expose what is happening here, and defend the reputation of all us law-abiding foreign residents.
Perhaps a regional newspaper like the SCMP (or preferably a Chinese language paper) would be interested in this story ? Why don’t some of you ex-newspaper workers ring them up ? I assume there is no equivalent of Private Eye in Taipei ? Alternatively a letter signed by as many participants as possible should be written in Chinese to the China Times ?
Don’t some of you have connections good enough to take up a collection and then have some Taiwanese thugs send the ‘lichang’ and his cronies to the hospital for a very long time? You could film it and sell it to Power News titled: Bamboo Union members, high on betel nut, vote with their fists.
There was another media coverage followed after the HwaShan event on TV last night that I watched at dinner with my family. The media is degrading and relating drug use with foreigners in taiwan. In this occasion they showed images of a raid where some pills were found, the name of the club was not mentioned but it said it was a common hangout for foreigners. It was then followed with other images taken from Carnegies in the same report. Showed faces and friends of people that I know are in no way related to drugs.
I figured it had something to do with someone wanting the property the art center is on.
What I can’t figure out is why an island that relies on foreign trade (not to mention lots of good PR to make up for its lack of official ties with any most major countries) would be so stupid as to engage in this petty little game of blame the foreigner.
Annette Lu, where art thou?
The vice president is the big “Taiwan is a great place for tourist development,” and you must think that she watches TV or talks to those who do. Where are the other legislators that must realize that this is blatent yellow journalism?
btw, the TT article says that the “informer” reports: “…and that scattered Ecstasy pills were seen on the ground.”
Aside from the bizarre syntax, that alone should send up the red flag. Does the legislator realize how unrealistic that situation is? Pills scattered on the ground? Please!
Originally posted by wolf_reinhold: Annette Lu, where art thou?
Why not drop her an e-mail on firstname.lastname@example.org
Or post some comment on these forums: Zhonghua Minguo zongtongfu guoshi luntan (Forum links are in the top right-hand corner.)
Another interesting thing about this whole media blitz is that last Friday, there was a huge police crackdown on drugs and clubs all over the island involving thousands of policemen where over 400 people tested positive for ecstasy. Thousands of clubs, discos and ktvs were raided. I wonder how many foreigners were arrested. There were arrests and police records in those cases, and yet they still did not receive anywhere near the press that the videotape of a few foreigners watching Taiwanese people dancing around a fire did. Here is a link to an article about the crackdown. Ecstasy crackdown
On a side note, the Power TV news broadcast was pretty funny in a way. The video quality was not good and it was dark, so it looked pretty cult-like and sinister. What was funny is that at random intervals, a shadowy humanoid figure would be circled and identified as a pot smoker or E user. It reminded me of the way John Madden reviews football plays with his electronic pen.
One other thing, there was a minor event at Hwashan last weekend where a few bands played and very few people showed up. I remember seeing a few Taiwanese people there that looked completely out of place. At the time I wondered what they were doing there because the event was kind of boring. I wouldn’t be surprised if Hwashan has been scoped out over the last few weeks, and they decided to make their move as soon as they got some controversial footage. If they had filmed last week, they would have had pictures of shirtless yanks playing cricket with a baseball bat and beer cans. I don’t think that would have had quite the same impact. Fire… Baaaaaad!!
Originally posted by chainsmoker: a shadowy humanoid figure would be circled and identified as a pot smoker or E user
I don’t know why your girlfriend is circled individually. The psychic drug busters at Power TV news would easily be able to tell from the physical contact and dazed expressions on her cohorts faces that she is a part of an ecstasy menage a trois or “yaotou wan 3p”. Sorry to be the one to break the news to you.
Ah, well, just having seen a CTS news broadcast with some bloke having a go (someone is always having a go about something on Taiwanese news broadcasts, note the screaming and the finger pointing) about the “boom boom boom” noise going on and “why couldn’t they do it in a disco instead”, I think I understand it was all to do with noise pollution…HA!!!
You wonder why they don’t have a go about their neighbours meniacally drilling holes in the cement. But then again, some noise you can tolerate…as long as foreigners aren’t in the picture.
It brings to mind the many flat parties that are broken up by the police year after year.
Down with rythmic jubilant noise!
But nobody lives round there - it’s in the middle of nowhere - so the noise complaints are bullshit.
I remember last summer they put on some terrible bunch of tattooed Yanks – were they called Industrial Waste or something? – and it was plenty loud enough to cause complaints, but I got the feeling it was just kind of sour grapes – kind of like “those guys are having fun and I’m not. We’ll see about this.”
But that was a full-blown, um, noisefest … anyway, my point is it was far more than a bunch of drugged up foreigners banging on some bongos – oops, of course, there weren’t any drugs involved, were there?
Its a great fucking pity, but you all know where this is going, don’t you? Mr. parking lot guy and his office block are going to be far less trouble to deal with than, (gasp!) artsy-fartsy types with (retch) some semi-original ideas.
“Quick, start up the concrete mixers! Let’s have some ORDER in this city!”
politicians, newspapers and sensational TV. if it weren’t so despicable, it would be funny.
in following the lead of chainsmoker, for those who don’t know, here’s the skinny:
at tops 50 foreigners were there at any given time, less than one quarter of the total number of people there.
the drum circle and the “rave” had very little to do with each other, other than the fact it was at the same place.
the performance art took place early in the evening in a separate building altogether.
my two NT:
obviously, the councillors’ claims are ludicrous and the reports speculative at best (and that’s being very generous).
as someone who attended the event and thinks more events like this should be promoted, the implications of the reporting are pretty clear.
one, ungrounded politically-motivated racist accusations are not only tolerated but held up to be newsworthy material fit for public consumption.
two, huashan should be turned into a parking lot because community arts events breeds drug use and debauchery.
as someone who strongly believes taiwanese arts (and arts, in general) needs fostering, i find all this very disturbing.
lost in all the sensationalist reporting is the fact that there were actually art events that happened that night. huashan is a minimally funded venue for community-based events for the promotion of arts and culture. i personally regard it as one of the few, if not the only, grass-roots-type venue for the arts in taipei. it is really disgusting that certain politicians would use it as their battleground for their own agendas.
taiwan’s war on drugs has turned yet an even dirtier shade of ugly.
as someone who considers himself taiwanese, i am really embarrassed and enraged by this whole fiasco.