Saturday, June 27, 2009
Lesson in Integrity for All
Author: Jerome A. Cohen, Adjunct Senior Fellow for Asia Studies
April 18, 2009
South China Morning Post
The media on the mainland and in Taiwan took little note of last week's sensational federal court decision in Washington that voided the criminal corruption conviction of former US senator Ted Stevens, the longest-serving Republican senator in American history.
Yet the case has profound implications for efforts on both sides of the Taiwan Strait to stamp out corruption while fostering a rule of law based on the adversarial system of criminal justice.
In recent years, Taiwan has made great strides in adapting the Anglo-American adversarial trial, minus the jury, to local conditions, and the mainland has been slowly moving in that direction, at least in principle. The adversarial system is based on equal combat between prosecutors and defence counsel before a neutral court. Their combat is governed by rules designed to promote fairness and accuracy.
One rule required by the US Constitution since the Supreme Court's 1963 Brady decision is that the prosecution, which generally has more resources for gathering evidence than the defence, must turn over to the defence information in its possession that is likely to benefit the defence. Although the degree of transparency required by this rule is subject to debate, withholding significant evidence is a major ethical breach that can result in setting aside a conviction.
This is what just happened in United States vs Stevens, a case that had been brought by the Public Integrity Section of the Department of Justice (DOJ) under president George W. Bush's administration, which handles official corruption prosecutions. It was tried, at Senator Stevens' request, shortly before last November's federal election, and his conviction may well have caused his defeat in a close contest.
Several times during the trial, Judge Emmet Sullivan, prompted by dynamic defence counsel, reprimanded prosecutors for withholding evidence, and sought to remedy any damage to the defence. However, in February, a new prosecution team selected to work on the case by President Barack Obama's new attorney general, Eric Holder, discovered yet another failure by its predecessors to reveal evidence - evidence that would have undermined the credibility of the government's key witness. At that point, Mr Holder, who had served in the Public Integrity Section decades ago, asked the court to void the conviction and announced that all charges against Senator Stevens would be dropped.
Judge Sullivan, formerly a successful trial lawyer, not only complied with the government's request but, after excoriating the DOJ's handling of the case, took the extraordinary step of appointing an independent lawyer to serve as special prosecutor to investigate whether six of the prosecutors should be held in criminal contempt of court for their repeated, and admitted, mistakes. Although the DOJ had already asked its Office of Professional Responsibility to investigate the misconduct, the judge's loss of confidence in the integrity of the Public Integrity Section led him to insist on an independent investigation.
Why is this story relevant to the mainland and Taiwan? It illustrates one of the worst dangers of prosecution in every country. It also shows two of the safeguards that the adversarial system maintains against this danger. First, able defence lawyers had full access to their client, who was not detained pending trial, and they had the freedom and funds to conduct their own investigation and pursue aggressive courtroom challenges.
Second, an experienced judge had the independence and confidence to denounce the misconduct of a public integrity section that had failed to live up to its name.
The case also illustrates the importance of having a justice department chief courageous enough to repudiate his staff's misconduct, replace the offending prosecutors, initiate an investigation and drop the charges.
Finally, what does this sad tale tell us about the relationship between politics and criminal justice? We should note that it was the Republican Bush administration that prosecuted Republican Senator Stevens. Perhaps it wanted to be seen to be suppressing corruption as the federal election approached.
For the Democratic Obama administration, the decision to repudiate the Stevens conviction may have been easier, even though it cast doubt on the loss of Senator Stevens' seat. It reminded the public of the Bush administration's well-known distortions of the law and of President Obama's determination to restore America's reputation for supporting human rights. In the present US political climate, reaffirmation of fairness, justice and the constitution is good politics.
Jerome A. Cohen is co-director of NYU Law School's US-Asia Law Institute and adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. A fuller version of this article can be found at www.usasialaw.org.
This article appears in full on CFR.org by permission of its original publisher. It was originally available here
Jerome A. Cohen, Ma Ying-jeou's Mentor, Again Highlights the Erosion of Justice in Taiwan
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
China Times Group Takeover Raises Press Freedom Concerns
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) stands in solidarity with its affiliate, the Association of Taiwan Journalists (ATJ), and members of Taiwan’s independent media in demanding that the new owners of Taiwan’s largest media syndicate, China Times Group, make a public commitment to press freedom and media independence.
Taiwan’s media regulatory body, the National Communications Council (NCC), announced a conditional approval on May 27 of the takeover of the China Times Group by the Want Want Group, after a series of public hearings. Want Want Group is chaired by Taiwan businessman Tsai-Eng-ming, who owns a food products conglomerate largely based in China.
On June 12, the owners of the Want Want China Times Group sent legal notifications to several journalists and office-holders in media rights organisations threatening to sue them for any critical reporting of the takeover. Recipients included Media Watch chairman Kuan Chung-Hsiang (管中祥), ATJ President Chuang Feng-Chia (莊豐嘉) and Wealth magazine editor Tien Hsi-Ju (田習如).
More than 30 media reform and human rights organisations and more than 400 news media workers in Taiwan have signed a petition, “News media is not the tool of bosses”, condemning the takeover. The petition also condemns advertisements published in the group’s flagship newspaper, China Times, accusing the NCC of abuse of power. The advertisements reportedly included photos of three NCC members in a “most wanted” format.
The NCC’s decision imposed five rulings for conditions of operation of the Want Want China Times Group. These include reappointing board members of two major television stations owned by Want Want China Times Group, China Television Co (CTV) and the Chinese Nationalist Party-operated CTI; assurance of independence for the board of directors of both TV stations; separate advertising, sales and programming departments; and the establishment of an “ethics commission” and regularly published “self-discipline” reports on their respective websites.
Signatories to the ATJ-led petition voiced concern that the group’s response to critical commentary and NCC regulation indicated a lack of commitment to news media professionalism and independence. “The dignity and professional autonomy of news media employees cannot be sacrificed and news workers cannot be treated as sales personnel or given orders on what news to report or what to write,” the petition said.
"The Want Want China Times Group’s attempts to intimidate journalists, public commentators and NCC personnel call into question its attitude and commitment to freedom of expression and the value of independent voices in Taiwan,” IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said. “The group needs to recognise that the role of an independent media in a democracy is to provide a diversity of information, news and analysis, and that media business employees must be able to provide this public good without fear of intimidation and legal action.”
The IFJ joins the ATJ and petition signatories in calling on the owners of the Want Want China Times Group not to override the press freedom standards set by both the NCC and the independent reporting community in Taiwan.
For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919
Monday, June 22, 2009
GOING TO THE TOP
A White House official said the US president would give every consideration to a letter appealing for support for the pro-democracy organization
By William Lowther
STAFF REPORTER , WASHINGTON
Monday, Jun 22, 2009, Page 3
A congressman has asked US President Barack Obama to become directly involved in the growing controversy over the future of the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy (TFD). (TFD 為台灣民主基金會)
Robert Andrews, a Democrat from New Jersey, said in a letter to the White House that the TFD’s existence and present general policy directions were very much in line with the “fundamental values of democracy and human rights which Taiwan shares with the US.”
It goes on to ask Obama to “urge” President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) and his administration to “let the TFD do its useful work the way it had done over the past six years.”
信中要求歐巴馬敦促馬英九政府讓台灣民主基金會能夠一如過去六年做它該做(有用)的事. 註: TFD是2003年成立的
A number of other Congressmen are expected to publicly support Andrews’ letter later this week.
The White House could not confirm last night that Obama had actually read the letter, but an official said: “It’s an important and significant subject and I am sure he will give it every consideration.”
In the letter to Obama, Andrews said that he was writing “to bring an issue to your attention that is of great concern.”
He added: “Recently, news reports from Taiwan have come to our attention that the administration of Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou is planning to curtail the activities of the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy, reversing the Foundation’s policies of supporting democratic movements in other countries on grounds that this may offend the autocratic government of the People’s Republic of China and replacing the TFD’s personnel with people sympathetic to this accommodationalist philosophy.”
(近來的台灣新聞報導讓我們注意到馬政府打算阻擋台灣民主基金會的活動, 修改基金會支持其他國家民主活動的政策以免惹惱中國政府, 並撤換基金會人員)
The TFD was founded in 2003 and modeled on the US’ National Endowment for Democracy with the aim of promoting democracy and human rights in Asia.
“The TFD liaised with Tibetan and Chinese dissident groups as well as organizations from the Czech Republic, former East Germany, Hungary and Poland, inviting speakers to Taiwan to discuss such issues as transitional justice and human rights,” the letter said.
“In January of this year, it also invited Freedom House to Taiwan to present its annual report of freedom in the world. It also supports democracy activists in Cuba,” it said.
Andrews added that he was concerned the Ma administration was seeking accommodation with China “at the expense of freedom and democracy, not only in Taiwan itself, but also in China and Tibet.”
“This would constitute another blow to Taiwan’s vibrant democracy,” he said.
延伸閱讀: Bad rap on rights is Ma's making Tuesday, Jun 23, 2009, Page 8
The political storm brewing over an approaching personnel reshuffle at the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy was anything but inevitable.
Not long after news emerged that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) intended to make changes to the foundation’s board of directors, various organizations in Taiwan and the US began accusing Ma of interfering in the affairs of this reputable organization. One US congressman has gone so far as to call on US President Barack Obama to get involved.
Sunday, June 21, 2009
Saturday, June 13, 2009
1) 來此第三年,第一次進去Minneapolis 的市區(downtown). 是的, 第一次. 主要是去聽音樂.
2) 為了插枝九層塔, 買了九層塔,開發出來的九層塔大餐. 其實只有兩道(味噌茄子與九層塔炒羊肉),三種煮法(味噌茄子有兩種煮法)啦. 詳見此
3) 聽說google茴香的話,本人的部落閣已經名列前矛了, 當然要繼續開發茴香餐囉. 這是茴香鮭魚 太歡愉了是嗎? 來點正經的.
4) Starbucks or not: 這是關於台灣有部落客發起抗議台灣星巴克使用中國製的紙杯,還有近來一些比較激進的環保人士提議只使用當地的原料,只消費當地製造的物品已減少因為運送而多消耗的能源相關的一些想法. (不過只有"會員"進得去. )
5) 預告: 明天要去看賽馬! 賭資已經到手,期待啊!
Friday, June 12, 2009
轉載: Prof Jerome A. Cohen calls for Taiwan's legal scholars to speak out on law reforms 孔傑榮呼籲台灣法律學者為台灣司改盡力(出聲)
Professor Jerome A. Cohen calls for Taiwan’s legal scholars to speak out on law reforms , 06.11.2009
An edited version of this text appears in Chinese (繁体中文版）in the China Times (Taiwan) for June 11, 2009. This article is also published in the South China Morning Post (Hong Kong) for June 11, 2009.
Anyone who cares about law and government has to be impressed by visiting Taiwan. Its democratically elected president and legislature, spurred by the interpretations of its independent Constitutional Court, have just ended the power of the police to imprison people without affording them the full protections of the newly revised judicial process.
They have also incorporated the standards of the two major international human rights covenants into Taiwan’s domestic law. The government - in open court - is vigorously prosecuting the reportedly massive corruption of the previous administration.
The long moribund Control Yuan, whose function is to ferret out official misconduct, has come to life, and Taiwan’s lawyers’ associations and civic groups continue to press for further improvements in criminal justice. The island’s free and hyperactive media, essential to the development of the rule of law, enjoy a field day reporting all this.
Yet, surprisingly, a recent intense week in Taipei, spent mostly with legal scholars, left me a bit depressed. As usual in a healthy society, I heard many stimulating critiques of the current situation. Some friends claimed: that ex-president Chen Shui-bian, now a criminal defendant, is being unfairly confined to a miserable detention cell for many months, while others under investigation and indictment for corruption remain free; that the Kuomintang administration of President Ma Ying-jeou is zealously bringing corruption charges against politicians of the Democratic Progressive Party while ignoring the many instances of similar misconduct by KMT officials; that the judge who was ultimately put in charge of the trial of Chen and his family has repeatedly ruled arbitrarily against them; that the legislature failed to enact necessary criminal justice reforms; and so on.
These allegations are troubling, of course. Yet, when I asked my academic friends why more of them - there are a few distinguished exceptions - did not speak out, publish essays and document their concerns, all too often I heard: “What good would it do? We can’t change anything. They won’t listen. Besides, we don’t want to be controversial. People will accuse us of `being too Green’ or sympathising with corruption.” Some seem to be too busy with important research, consulting work or family responsibilities. A few hinted at hopes for government appointments that might be thwarted by controversy.
Such sentiments are understandable, especially in a busy, successful but bitterly divided political environment in which mutual trust and respect are in short supply. Yet Taiwan’s evolving democracy confronts multiple challenges and needs the benefit of all the expertise and wisdom that is available.
It will be difficult to achieve optimum solutions to many major law reform issues without the informed, objective contributions of the island’s best minds. If many of them hold back, for whatever reason, if they fail to take advantage of their hard-earned freedoms to speak out, they put their society’s precious accomplishments at risk.
If Taiwan’s law professors, legal scholars, social scientists and others with unique qualifications to promote public understanding keep silent, they actually exercise fewer freedoms than their counterparts on the repressive mainland, some of whom risk their physical safety, their careers and their family’s well-being by “speaking truth to power”.
「如果台灣的法學教授、法學家、社會學家，和其他具備特殊才幹而能夠促進公眾理解之士，持續沉默下去，他們實際上行使的自由，還比處在高壓中國政權下的知識分子更少。在這些知識分子當中，部分人甚至冒著他們人身安全、個人事業和家庭幸福的危險「向掌權者說真話 （speaking truth to power）」。
As I listened to Taiwan law professors explain their aversion to the public arena, I thought of mainland friends who are paying dearly for having voiced opposition to dictatorial rule. Kidnappings, beatings, imprisonment, disbarment, loss of jobs, exile and harassment of their spouse and children plague activist academics, as well as lawyers. Yet some persist. Should Taiwan’s legal scholars sit on their hands and seal their mouths? What price private pursuits?
Thursday, June 11, 2009
這是第四封公開信, 原來發表的時間是馬先生就職一年的"慶祝文", 原文在此.
6/12: 我真是後知後覺, 今天才發現有留言, 這裡有中文版.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Dear President Ma,
On the occasion of the first anniversary of your presidency, we, the undersigned, scholars and writers from the US, Canada, Europe and Australia, wish to publicly address our concerns to you about a number of trends in Taiwan, as well as several specific developments.
We raise these issues as international supporters of Taiwan's democracy who care deeply about the country and its future as a free and democratic nation-state. As you recall, we voiced concerns on three previous occasions, most recently in a letter to you, Mr. President, dated Jan. 17, 2009, in which we expressed our concern regarding the fairness of the judicial system in Taiwan.
These concerns have not been alleviated by either the response from Government Information Office Minister Su Jun-pin (蘇俊賓) or the cessation of troubling, flawed and partial judicial proceedings, in particular involving the case of former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁).
We reiterate that any alleged corruption must be investigated, but emphasize that the judicial process needs to be scrupulously fair and impartial. In the case of the former president, it is evident that the prosecution is heavily tainted by political bias, and that the former president is being treated badly out of spite for the political views and the positions he took during his presidency. Such retribution does not bode well for a young and fragile democracy, as Taiwan is.
The second issue that we feel we need to highlight is press freedom. In spite of earlier expressions of concern by international organizations such as the Committee to Protect Journalists and Freedom House, there continue to be reports of impingement on press freedom by your administration. A case in point is the recent disturbing report that Central News Agency staffs were instructed to write only "positive" stories about the policies of your administration, and that reports containing criticism of your administration or China were excised.
As supporters of a free and democratic Taiwan it is disheartening to see that in the annual report on press freedom by the New York-based Freedom House, Taiwan dropped from 32nd to 43rd place. In addition, it is disconcerting to see reports that groups with close ties to China are buying their way into Taiwan's media circles, gaining a controlling voice in major publications such as the China Times. We need to remind ourselves that China is still an authoritarian state with a long history of control of the news media. Its financial influence in Taiwan¡¯s free press will in the long run be detrimental to hard-won freedoms.
This leads us to a third general issue: the means by which rapprochement with China is being pursued. While most people in Taiwan and overseas agree that a reduction of tension in the Taiwan Strait is beneficial, it is crucial to do this in a manner befitting a democratic nation: with openness and full public debate. Only if there is sufficient transparency and true dialogue--both in the Legislative Yuan and in society as a whole--will the result be supported by a significant majority of the people.
Transparency and true dialogue have been lacking in the process. Decisions and agreements are arrived at in secrecy and then simply announced to the public. The Legislative Yuan seems to have been sidelined, having little input in the form or content of the agreements, such as the proposed economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA). The administration simply sends to the legislature the texts agreed to in the negotiations with the People¡¯s Republic of China, allowing virtually no possibility of discussion of the pros and cons of such agreements. This undermines the system of checks and balances, which is so essential to a mature democracy. We may mention that recent opinion polls show overwhelming support for a referendum on an ECFA and for better legislative oversight of China policy.
Mr. President, as international scholars and writers who have followed Taiwan¡¯s impressive transition to democracy during the past two decades, we know the sensitivity in Taiwan of the issue of relations with China. Rapprochement needs to be carried out in a way that ensures that the achievements of the democratic movement are safeguarded, that the political divide within Taiwan is reduced and that Taiwan's sovereignty, human rights and democracy are protected and strengthened.
However, during the past year we have seen that the policies of your administration are being implemented in a way that is causing deep anxiety, particularly among many who fought for Taiwan's democracy two decades ago. This was evident in the large-scale rallies held in Taipei and Kaohsiung on Sunday.
We have also seen a further polarization in society due to the lack of transparency and democratic checks and balances. Many observers believe that the rapprochement with China has occurred at the expense of Taiwan's sovereignty, democracy and freedoms. To some, the judicial practices and police behavior toward those who criticize your policies are even reminiscent of the dark days of martial law.
In this respect, symbols are important. It does not help that your administration has renamed National Taiwan Democracy Memorial Hall in Taipei back to Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall. It doesn't bolster your case that the funding for the Chingmei Human Rights Memorial in Sindian (新店) has been cut drastically and that the location is being turned into a "cultural" park. It doesn't help that changes are being made to the Assembly and Parade Act (集會遊行法) that infringe on freedoms of protesters instead of enhancing freedom of speech.
Mr. President, we appeal to you to take measures that alleviate these concerns. A first step would be to initiate and implement reforms in the judicial system that safeguard the human rights of the accused and ensure a fair trial. A second step would be to guarantee complete press freedom, and instill in those engaged in the media the determination to live up to the highest standards.
Thirdly, rapprochement with China needs to be brought about in such a way that the people of Taiwan have a full say in determining their future as a free and democratic nation. Closed-door deals that bring Taiwan increasingly into China's sphere of influence are detrimental to Taiwan's future and undermine the democratic fabric of society.
Due to its complex history, Taiwan has not had the opportunity to be accepted as a full and equal member of the international family of nations. We believe the people of Taiwan have worked hard for their democracy, and that the international community should accept Taiwan in its midst. Your actions and policies can help the island and its people move in the right direction. We urge you to do so.
NAT BELLOCCHI, Former chairman, American Institute in Taiwan
COEN BLAAUW, Formosan Association for Public Affairs, Washington
STšŠPHANE CORCUFF, Associate Professor of Political Science, China and Taiwan Studies, University of Lyon
GORDON G. CHANG, Author, The Coming Collapse of China
JUNE TEUFEL DREYER, Professor of Political Science, University of Miami
MICHAEL DANIELSEN, Chairman, Taiwan Corner, Copenhagen, Denmark
TERRI GILES, Executive Director, Formosa Foundation, Los Angeles
BRUCE JACOBS, Professor of Asian Languages and Studies, Monash University
RICHARD C. KAGAN, Professor Emeritus of History, Hamline University
JEROME F. KEATING, Author and associate professor (ret.), National Taipei University
DAVID KILGOUR, Former Canadian member of parliament and secretary of state for the Asia-Pacific
LIU SHIH-CHUNG, Visiting Fellow, The Brookings Institution, Washington
MICHAEL RAND HOARE, Emeritus Reader at the University of London, Great Britain
VICTOR H. MAIR, Professor of Chinese Language and Literature, University of Pennsylvania
DONALD RODGERS, Associate Professor of Political Science, Austin College
TERENCE RUSSELL, Associate Professor of Chinese Language and Literature, University of Manitoba
CHRISTIAN SCHAFFERER, Associate Professor, Department of International Trade, Overseas Chinese Institute of Technology; and Editor, Journal of Contemporary Eastern Asia
MICHAEL STAINTON, York Center for Asia Research, Toronto, Canada
PETER CHOW, Professor of Economics, City College of New York
PETER TAGUE, Professor of Law, Georgetown University
JOHN J. TKACIK JR. , Former senior research fellow, The Heritage Foundation, Washington
ARTHUR WALDRON, Lauder Professor of International Relations, University of Pennsylvania
VINCENT WEI-CHENG WANG, Professor of Political Science, University of Richmond
GERRIT VAN DER WEES, Editor, Taiwan CommuniqušŠ
MICHAEL YAHUDA, Professor Emeritus, London School of Economics, and Visiting Scholar, George Washington University
STEPHEN YATES, President, DC Asia Advisory, and former deputy assistant to the US vice president for national security affairs
延伸閱讀 extended reading:
KMT policy making Taiwan less secure
Saturday, June 6, 2009
香菜因此一直是我的拒絕往來物, 直到上次在密西根去朋友家. 朋友常常找我們去她們家裡吃飯聊天. 某次去的早,問她有什麼可以幫忙的. 她要我們幫忙包鮮蝦雲吞. 當時我看到香菜是內餡材料之一,想說包完要嘛不吃要嘛把香菜挑出來就是了.
出乎意料的, 一口咬下去竟然沒有對我來說噁心的香菜味,反而把蝦子的鮮味提出來. 於是這次菜園裡自己長出來的香菜終於有了驅蟲外的第二個功能: 包雲吞.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
現在,快要六四了, 中國的Twitter使用者說無法登入twitter. 純屬時機巧合? 應該不是.Times 的報導下的標題是: Chinese censors cut off Twitter, Hotmail and Flickr.
Twitter Service Blocked in China, Users Say
June 03, 2009
By SKY CANAVES and JESSICA E. VASCELLARO ,WSJ
Twitter Inc. users across China reported that the popular networking service appeared to be blocked Tuesday, two days ahead of the sensitive 20th anniversary of the military crackdown on pro-democracy protesters at Tiananmen Square.
If the site is being blocked by government censors, as many users suspect, it would mark the first time that Twitter has been widely inaccessible to users in China.
The so-called microblogging service, which garnered attention domestically during the immediate aftermath of last year's earthquake in Sichuan, hasn't previously been subject to restrictions in China. As a result, a number of prominent Chinese activists use Twitter regularly, either under their own names or using aliases.
Still, it's often difficult to tell whether a Web site has been purposely blocked by Chinese authorities, if other technical problems are to blame, or if services are blocked only in certain areas.
Officials at the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television, China's main media regulator, couldn't be reached late Tuesday, when word of the outages first spread. Chinese regulators in the past have declined to comment on potential stoppages.
A Twitter spokeswoman didn't have an immediate comment and couldn't confirm whether the service was blocked in China.
Sites that include large amounts of user-generated content are intermittently unavailable to users in China, especially around important government meetings or anniversaries. YouTube, Google Inc.'s video-sharing site, has been blocked for several weeks in China and remains so, a Google spokesman said Tuesday.
Some users said it was still possible to use Twitter through certain software applications, such as Seesmic, that allow users to send and receive messages without directly using the Twitter.com Web site. But users trying to access their Twitter accounts through other programs said they encountered problems. Fanfou.com, a popular domestic site that is similar to Twitter, appeared to be functioning normally on Tuesday.
Twitter has given the Internet-savvy in China another new platform to voice complaints and race ahead of state-controlled news media platforms. The development of Internet channels has pressured the government to respond to news faster.
Also Tuesday, a magazine published by the official Xinhua news service called on local governments to respond more quickly and develop a greater online presence to respond to popular online movements.
The Chinese government considers the 1989 pro-democracy protests to have been a counterrevolutionary riot, and further discussion of them remains taboo. The police presence around Tiananmen Square has increased, and on Tuesday the Foreign Correspondents Club of China issued a statement protesting restrictions on journalists attempting to cover the anniversary.
In recent weeks, activist groups have reported a tightening of security in China, linking it to the coming anniversary. Human Rights in China, based in New York, said that authorities detained Wu Gaoxing, a free-lance writer from Taizhou in Zhejiang province, who co-wrote an open letter to China's top leaders recently asking for equal rights and social security for ex-Tiananmen Square prisoners. China's Ministry of Public Security deferred requests for comment to Taizhou's local public security bureau, which declined to answer any questions.
Word of Twitter's outage became a popular subject on the service's site Tuesday. A number of users adopted an obscene variant of a hash tag derived from the acronym for the Great Firewall, the nickname for China's Internet censorship efforts. Hash tags are used on Twitter to mark and link to similar posts.—Loretta Chao in Beijing contributed to this article.
Write to Sky Canaves at firstname.lastname@example.org and Jessica E. Vascellaro at email@example.com Printed in The Wall Street Journal, page A4
Monday, June 1, 2009
美國的職業運動一直很興盛. 可能跟民情有關, 可能跟資本主義發展也有關. 職業運動得興盛需要很多周邊的配合--例如媒體轉播,球迷觀賞,周邊商品, 運動用品與明星球員代言以增加商品的市佔率等等.
這場對很多人意外的比賽結果把近年竄起的明星之一LeBron James送去放暑假, 也把他代言的Nike酸了好一下. 很有趣的一篇報導.
Howard pours in 40 as Magic make 1st Finals appearance since '95
ORLANDO, Fla. -- The Orlando Magic never gave in. They didn't buckle when their starting point guard went down with a season-ending injury. They regrouped when their frustrated superstar called out their coach. They stood up to the Boston Celtics. They sent LeBron James home.
They fought -- all the way to the NBA Finals.
Kobe vs. LeBron?
Not this year.
Dwight Howard dominated inside for 40 points, Rashard Lewis added 18 and the overlooked Magic wrecked the Kobe-LeBron dream finals with a 103-90 victory over James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 6 to win the Eastern Conference championship Saturday night.
Fourteen frustrating years since their last appearance, the Magic are back from ruin.
"I don't think people thought we could be at this level," coach Stan Van Gundy said.
The Magic will be making their first finals appearance since 1995, one year before Shaquille O'Neal bolted as a free agent for Los Angeles and wrecked the franchise. Six years ago they won just 21 games, a low point that helped them draft Howard with No. 1 pick.
It's been a long, slow climb back, but Orlando has been rebuilt and will meet the Lakers on Thursday night at the Staples Center in Game 1.
Disney World vs. Disneyland.
Oh, and memo to Nike executives: It's time to break out the Howard puppet. LeBron's can go in summer storage.
For now, the only matchup between James and Lakers superstar Bryant will have to be limited to those cute TV commercials.
With the city's most famous athlete, Tiger Woods, sitting courtside, Orlando dropped 12 3-pointers and made believers of all those who wondered if they were better than the Cavaliers, a team that won 66 games in the regular season, or the defending champion Celtics.
The Magic made both disappear.
"For us as a team, we understand how everybody has talked about us for the last couple of years," Howard said. "We can beat anybody."
James scored 25 in his worst game of the series, but the 24-year-old MVP was magnificent for most of it, adding to a legacy still in its infancy. But Mo Williams lost his shooting touch and Cleveland's bench was badly outplayed by Orlando's reserves.
Afterward, James put on headphones and stormed out of Amway Arena.
He skipped the news conference and briskly walked down the corridor with two security guards as escorts. He plopped into a chair to be scanned for the team's charter plane ride, grabbed his bags and was gone -- a special season ending in stunning disappointment.
Delonte West added 22 and Williams, who guaranteed the Cavs would come back and win the series, 17 for Cleveland, which went 0-5 in Orlando.
"We had one goal and we came up short," Cavs coach Mike Brown said.
During the closing minutes, James was mocked by Orlando's crowd singing "M-V-P" as Howard shot free throws.
After Superman muscled underneath for a thunderous dunk with 2:21 left, the crowd moved into finals mode chanting, "Beat L.A.!"
Howard's one flaw has been his free-throw shooting, but he made 12 of 16 in Game 6.
Inside. Outside. The Magic had it all.
Cleveland may have had the best player. Orlando had the better team.
"Everybody's hurting," Cavs guard Daniel Gibson said. "It's hard watching the dream go away with every 3-point shot they made."
The Magic's season hasn't been without its share of turmoil. Jameer Nelson sustained a season-ending shoulder injury in early February, a setback that at the time seemed as if it would prevent Orlando from doing anything this year.
But general manager Otis Smith acquired guard Rafer Alston from Houston. Alston, a former playground legend, fit in perfectly. In the opening round against Philadelphia, the Magic lost the opener before rebounding and winning a close-out Game 6 on the road.
Then, following Game 5 of the Boston series, Howard called out Van Gundy for not getting him the ball enough and challenged his substitution patterns. The Magic shook off that spat, too, winning two straight, including Game 7 on Boston's parquet.
In the conference finals, they beat Cleveland with a devastating mix of inside power and outside firepower.
"This team has fought really, really hard," Van Gundy said. "Our reward is you get to go from preparing for LeBron to preparing for Kobe. I'm not doing that tonight."
This was supposed to be the Cavs' season. But there will be no title, and once again Cleveland fans will feel nothing but heartache as they wait for one of their city's teams to end a 45-year championship drought.
In the first half, the Cavaliers couldn't stop Howard and the shoot-first-ask-questions-later Magic took turns launching 3s while building an 18-point halftime lead.
"When they get it going, they are really tough," Ben Wallace said.
On Cleveland's last possession before the half, James missed a short runner while being knocked to the floor. He sat there in disbelief, looking for a call, looking for help, looking lost.
Cleveland's coaching staff barked at the officials and Brown was assessed a technical.
When the Cavs came back out after halftime, Howard was practicing free throws. As he walked toward Cleveland's bench, injured forward Lorenzen Wright, dressed in a suit, jumped up and grabbed the net and tried to knock out one of Howard's shots.
It dropped in anyway, another symbolic moment.
A little more Magic.
Game notesWoods, who shares a Dec. 30 birthday with James, was back after missing Game 4. Florida quarterback Tim Tebow was also in the house. ... James expects he and Howard -- Olympic teammates -- meeting in the postseason could become an annual event. "It's not the first time we'll see each other on this platform," he said.
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