In gratitude to our valued guests for choosing Jurassic Park as your premier vacation destination, please enjoy these select quotes - with my commentary - from some sack of fossils which originally published a big ol' heap of garbage in the Liberty Times.
(I actually don't know who wrote it, I don't see a byline. But it just screams "old rich dude" so I'm going with that because I live dangerously.)
Nearly 50 percent of the respondents said that the Labor Standards Act (勞基法) is still not flexible enough, and about 90 percent agreed that the terms of the act should be relaxed to allow managers and professionals to work under a responsibility system instead of being restricted by rigid clauses regarding working hours.
Hmm, OK. I am sure that if we implement this guy's idea for "no real labor regulations at all", that things will work perfectly because bosses will totally respect their employees' needs, limits and personal time so that everyone will happily work a reasonable number of hours in a day and be paid generous overtime out of the kindness of the bosses' hearts. If any employee feels they are being required to work overly long hours, are paid insufficiently, are not paid overtime, are pressured not to take vacations, or all three, they will be able to have a civil and forthright discussion with their boss and have the situation resolved to their satisfaction immediately.
That's how it works, right?
Nearly 60 percent said that the government does not pay sufficient attention to the needs of business when setting relevant policies.
Oh, I see. Obviously, when looking at Taiwan's policies, laws and regulations, you can see how heavily skewed they are in favor of labor. I mean it's a regular old Sweden up in here! That's why workers are so highly paid and enjoy generous leave and benefits with a high level of job security and never worry that they are being exploited, overworked or underpaid.
Asked about taxation issues, 56 percent of respondents said that the individual income tax rate is too high, which they say is not favorable to doing business in Taiwan
Oh definitely! A tax rate that is generally lower than most European countries and the United States (with a maximum individual tax rate that is the same or lower than most Western countries) is just too high. I guess to make it lower so Taiwan will be better for business we can spend less on something. Certainly Taiwan doesn't need defense (what threats do we face anyway?) or, like, health care. Countries without national health care systems do JUST GREAT. What's important is that companies make more money. Corporations are people, my friend!
and more than 70 percent said that tax deductions are more important than government subsidies.
I am sure it is a mere coincidence that tax deductions tend to favor the wealthy (data for the US but pertinent to Taiwan), who have things to deduct, whereas subsidies seem better poised to actually help the needy. Certainly that couldn't have anything to do with it, oh no. I just could not imagine that the person who wrote this is rich and wants more for themselves, it couldn't be that, that would be unconscionable and we know the rich are always good. They are the best people with no exceptions.
AmCham’s annual reports nearly always raise questions about Taiwan’s investment environment. Last year’s report drew much attention for its strong criticism of the Labor Standards Act. This year’s report is still critical of the act, but the criticisms are a little milder.
Well I am sure AmCham, which represents business interests and not labor interests, is unbiased and politically neutral and would not promote a conservative, pro-wealth, pro-boss, neoliberal ideology. That would never happen, no sir. So we can totally believe what they say and take their reports at face value.
Of concern are the main reasons for Taiwan’s economic stagnation in recent years: insufficient investment and a lack of confidence, along with a pervasive sentiment that is not supportive of businesses.
This is definitely true, especially as labor doesn't have any needs. Workers in Taiwan sip champagne after swimming in pools of gold coins and any laws pertaining to them (not that there need to be any for these veritable Lord Fauntleroys of the workforce who have been raised up so highly by their good fortune of being employed by overly generous Taiwanese bosses) are swiftly enforced, but those poor companies...
...well, I guess economic stagnation is not related in any way to all those people who say that they are worried about the future because they don't make enough, that the most talented are leaving Taiwan because the salaries here are so low or that they aren't spending because they simply can't afford to. They must be just hoarding their NT$22,000 or whatever garbage scraps you throw at them for their 10-hour workdays rather than spending it on the goods and services they work all the time - literally all the time with no free time at all - to produce like good capitalists the way you want them to.
Other problems include excessively strict environmental protection laws
Oh I see. THAT'S why Taiwan's air is crystal clear and perfectly clean every day and the rivers are so sparkling and clean you can drink from them. I didn't know before. But now I do, thanks to you. Let's celebrate Taiwan's excessively strict environmental protection laws with a brisk dip in the Keelung River! You go first.
and overcautious tax reforms
Hmm, if the tax reforms are overcautious there can't possibly be a problem with wealthy people dodging their tax obligations to the country that helped them become rich, can there?
while a lot of legal regulations do not meet the needs of start-ups
Oh that's too bad, I guess when the Global Entrepreneurship Development Institute ranked Taiwan 18th in the world in 2017 (the top ten slots going to Western countries, and Taiwan ranking first in Asia), that's just another way of saying "Taiwan is crap for start-ups"...or something.
It certainly doesn't translate to "I am rich but I want more money so I'm going to decorate my greed with some sort of fake concern for "startups". NoooooOOOooOoOooo.
There was a time when Taiwan enjoyed double-digit annual growth rates and was No. 1 among the “four Asian Tigers,” but in recent years maintaining just 2 percent growth has become a cause for celebration and a political achievement worth boasting about.
There couldn't possibly be any reasons for this OTHER than the fact that companies and bosses are systematically mistreated by the government whilst workers are carried around on gold palanquins by their bosses, enjoying the perfect, unspoilt air and fresh green vistas of Taiwan's landscape due to its excessive environmental regulations. Certainly there are no other political issues and threats both external and internal or global trends that contribute to this in any way. Certainly outdated reliance on certain types of industry or active attempts at interference by some mythical hostile foreign power couldn't POSSIBLY have anything to do with it.
Also, double digit economic growth must continue unabated without stopping or slowing for any reason, forever and in perpetuity, otherwise WE WILL ALL EXPLODE AND DIE. There can be no other considerations at all. Not the environment, not health, not human rights, not any sort of global issues which don't exist anyway because I say so, certainly not the needs of those dirty, dirty (but overpaid and spoiled) workers.
If we don't expand like marshmallows in a microwave, we will perish.
Compared with the flourishing economies of other countries in the region
There are definitely no downsides at all to the economic successes of other countries in Asia. None whatsoever. Not one. None. If you say there is one, you are wrong, because there are none.
Also, it is clearly a sign of Armageddon that a country ranked 23rd in population in Asia has the 7th largest Asian economy (and 15th largest world economy), far outranks its size by global standards in GDP and PPP and is considered a high-income country.
Taiwan’s economy, regrettably, is declining with each passing day.
I guess "expanding" is a synonym for "declining" now, because some old Brachiosaur wants more fucking money. And I guess "fastest expansion in three years" is now another way of saying "regrettably" and "not flourishing".
When comparing nations, China is no doubt the one that makes Taiwan feel most threatened. Some years ago, China started making counterfeit goods and stealing intellectual property and a lot of those dubious goods were made by little factories scattered nationwide. A good example would be Geely Auto, which, when it started, was widely mocked for copying Mercedes-Benz and Toyota vehicle models.
However, Geely has now grown and developed to the point of acquiring Sweden’s Volvo Cars and has become the biggest shareholder in Mercedes-Benz’s parent company, Daimler AG.
There could not possibly be any downsides to that at all and there are no reasons whatsoever why China would have other factors going on that Taiwan does not or could not. Certainly they are not pursuing an active strategy of taking advantage of Taiwan's low wages to lure away our talent. They wouldn't do thaaaaaat.
China has formed a “national semiconductor team,” which, backed by state funding, has been hunting the world for companies to take over. Its voracious appetite has caused anxiety in Europe, North America and Japan, which have established strict investment review mechanisms to keep China in check.
...and you are telling us this why? You want Taiwan to emulate that? It sounds terrifying and horrible, much like you. You don't think having the highest-ranked semiconductor foundry in the industry, with a business ethos set on expansion and continued competitiveness, is good enough for a country a fraction of China's size?
Nonetheless, China is still scoring gains with its strategy of using its market as a lure in exchange for technological know-how.
Again, there are no downsides to this whatsoever. After all, you can't eat democracy.
Aside from China, the economies of Southeast Asia are also on the rise. Singapore joined the ranks of the world’s developed economies long ago. Thailand and Malaysia are catching up with Taiwan. The Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia all have fast-growing economies and could potentially be the stars of tomorrow. Even poor and backward nations such as Cambodia and Myanmar have opened their doors and are working hard to attract foreign investment.
Sooooooo....Taiwan is in such dire straits that we should be afraid of "backward" (your word not mine, racist bro) countries like Myanmar? Ring the bells of terror! If you aren't scared, this dude might make less money!!
Ahem. Anyway. I suppose you haven't heard of the New Southbound Policy. It's fine if you want to critique it but I am reasonably sure you have truly never heard of it. After all, it was conceptualized sometime after the Triassic Era.
These are Taiwan’s strengths, which can help its economy to rise again, so there is no need to put then nation down, but government officials must not allow themselves to be restricted by minority populist voices.
Minority who now?
Who won the election?
You do know how elections work, don't you?
The government needs to thoroughly improve the investment environment
People will invest more if they earn more, but you don't seem to think that's an issue. Or do you mean rich Chinese investors who will then try to make politically-charged demands of the businesses they buy into?
boost public confidence
Making enough money to make it worthwhile to stay in Taiwan would be a damn start.
take the interests of the majority as the foundation of its policies
AGAIN THIS IS HOW ELECTIONS WORK AND I'M SORRY THAT YOUR GUY LOST BUT...
Translated by Julian Clegg
I am really sorry you had to translate this steaming pile of crap, Mr. Clegg. It makes us all dumber. If I ever meet you I will buy you a beer for having to do this horrible work. Unless you actually agree with this in which case no beer for you.