Poll favors Chen Shih-chung
A poll by the Taiwan Brain Trust yesterday showed that Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) was the Cabinet official whose performance was rated “most satisfactory,” garnering approval from 93.4 percent of the respondents, followed by Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) with 66.2 percent and Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) with 54.6 percent. President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) obtained 74.5 percent support, up 22.7 percentage points from a similar poll in December last year. Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) garnered 68.9 percent. The poll also showed that Minister of National Defense Yen De-fa (嚴德發), Minister of the Interior Hsu Kuo-yung (徐國勇) and Mainland Affairs Council Minister Chen Ming-tong (陳明通) were the three officials deemed most deserving of losing their posts after May 20, when Tsai begins her second term. The poll, conducted from April 25 to Tuesday last week, collected 1,075 valid samples with a margin of error of 3 percentage points.
Maldives flight mulled
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it is negotiating the evacuation of 28 Taiwanese stranded in the Maldives after India implemented a lockdown. Eva Airways Corp and China Airlines have no direct flights to the islands, so the ministry has had to consult with other airlines, it said. Two or three companies have quoted reasonable prices, it said. As a charter flight for 28 would be expensive for the passengers, the ministry hopes to arrange a flight that other nations could share, Department of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Director-General Baushuan Ger (葛葆萱) said.
Care for mothers urged
The John Tung Foundation yesterday urged people to reach out to new mothers after a study in the Maternal and Child Health Journal showed that about one in five with postpartum mood disorder do not disclose the condition to healthcare providers. Through an online survey that included measurements of “perceived barriers to treatment,” “social support” and “depression, anxiety and stress,” as well as questions over the disclosure of symptoms, the researchers found that while more than half of participants had postpartum mood disorder symptoms, one in five did not share their feelings with a healthcare professional.
Doctor warns over neck
The neck channels the carotid and vertebral arteries, and massaging or applying force to it can cause problems, Taichung Hospital Department of Neurology doctor Wu Yu-hsuan (吳宇軒) said on Friday last week, adding that such treatment should focus on the shoulders and back to prevent vertebral artery dissection. The hospital admitted a 37-year-old man surnamed Chang (張) in May or June last year, whose family brought him in after he reported feeling weakness on his right side and was unable to fully articulate sentences. The hospital diagnosed Chang with vertebral artery dissection on the left side with cerebral infarction. Chang had refused to go to hospital, saying he was young and healthy, Wu said. Chang was hospitalized for a week and discharged after the thrombosis was absorbed and the vertebral artery dissection healed, Wu said. Common symptoms of stroke include a sudden lack of strength or numbness on one side of the body, facial paralysis, including a drooping mouth, and an inability to clearly articulate sentences.
‘CORNERED ENEMY’: China’s rise is threatening peace and stability, and the US would aim to restrict it with help from allies in the Asia-Pacific, Soong Hseik-wen said A draft bill on protecting Taiwan from invasion is likely to be passed by the US Congress, but it remains to be seen how US President Joe Biden’s administration would implement the act if it is passed, Taiwanese academics said on Sunday. US Senator Rick Scott and US Representative Guy Reschenthaler on Thursday reintroduced the proposed Taiwan Invasion Prevention Act, which was shelved in September last year due to the impending US presidential election. Arthur Ding (丁樹範), a professor at National Chengchi University’s College of International Affairs, and Soong Hseik-wen (宋學文), a professor at National Chung Cheng University’s Graduate Institute
CHANGING IT UP: With Bopomofo rarely used outside of Taiwan, the lawmaker said that Romanization would help the government in its internationalization efforts Tainan City Councilor Lee Chi-wei (李啟維) yesterday called for the use of Romanized spellings to make Taiwanese dialects and languages internationally recognizable. Speaking at a news conference in Tainan to mark International Mother Language Day, Lee said the use of zhuyin fuhao (注音符號, Mandarin phonetic symbols commonly known as Bopomofo) made it difficult to promote interest in, or recognition of, the nation’s dialects and languages, as the system is not commonly used outside of Taiwan. “The legislature has already passed the Development of National Languages Act (國家語言發展法), but under the current circumstances that act is like a candle in the wind,” he
CULTURAL CAPITAL: Taiwanese can act as ambassadors while teaching in the US, by exchanging views with their colleagues and friends, one Mandarin teacher said Most US students take Chinese classes because they want to know more about China, but Taiwanese teachers can make a change with more flexible pedagogic approaches and cultural exchanges, two local teachers said. Since the US last year canceled its Fulbright programs with China and Hong Kong, Taiwan has been granted a larger quota of scholarships, including the Foreign Language Teaching Assistant Fulbright Program, which is funded by the US Department of State and comanaged in Taiwan by the Foundation for Scholarly Exchange. American Institute in Taiwan Director Brent Christensen last month encouraged Taiwan to fill the gap left by the closures
CHINESE AGGRESSION: The bill seeks to empower Taiwan by calling for a free-trade pact and authorizing the US president to use military force to defend Taiwan US Senator Rick Scott and US Representative Guy Reschenthaler on Thursday reintroduced in the US Congress the Taiwan invasion prevention act, aiming to boost Taiwan’s ability to resist Chinese aggression. While the bill was introduced last year by Scott and former US representative Ted Yoho, it was not listed onto the formal agenda in the run-up to the US presidential election in November last year. “We can’t sit back and let Communist China continue to threaten our democratic ally Taiwan,” Scott, a Republican, wrote on Twitter, urging US President Joe Biden and other Democractic senators to “take a stand for democracy” and