Johnny Neihu's Mailbag

Sat, Sep 15, 2007 - Page 8

Golden oldies, sans politics?

Dear Johnny,

I work for the Dominican International School, Taipei (DIS) as a G12 teacher. DIS will be celebrating its Golden Jubilee in December and my students and I are involved in a project on music and dance from the 1950s to the present, but it's extremely difficult to find information on the subject.

What we plan to do is look at each decade, 1957-1966, 1967-1976, etc, leaving politics aside to understand what the students liked during these periods.

For example, I know about trends in the UK, having grown up there during that time, and obviously can relate to the US, but unfortunately I can't find any info about Taiwan or relating directly to kids growing up in Taipei.

I am assuming from the various comments in your articles that you grew up in Taiwan so perhaps you have some personal reflections you would like to share, or maybe info in the Taipei Times/Liberty Times archives, or maybe you can recommend singers or musicians who we could talk to.

I do hope you will be able to help us and I look forward to hearing from you very soon.

Michael Wise

Johnny replies: I'll do my best, though separating politics from the arts can be tricky, even in those days. In the meantime, can any readers help Mr. Wise?

Extracting latent value

Dear Johnny,

The maintenance arm of Air Canada was spun off as a subsidiary called ACTS so it could be "monetized," meaning "sold off" to "extract the latent value." KKR was bidding against Lufthansa, and was to buy 70 percent of ACTS for $800 million on Aug. 15. This deal failed, apparently, but news is hard to find. Can you tell us what is happening on this subject?

We here in Vancouver, the former base of Canadian Pacific Airlines, (that name still looks sweet) have been decimated, with nearly 700 lay-offs in June. Why isn't there any news in the papers in Canada?

Jim Fair

Johnny replies: Truth be told, Jim, I have no idea, and to be honest I have no idea why you asked humble little me for the inside track on this issue. But if you're desperate for intelligence, I might be able to convince my gal Cathy Pacific to ring around some of her contacts in the aviation industry.