Tsai urges China to think beyond KMT-CCP framework



TAIPEI, Taiwan — Opposition leader Tsai Ing-wen yesterday urged China to think beyond the Communist-Nationalist framework in order to see new possibilities in cross-strait relations.

Tsai said the people of Taiwan have been disgruntled by the Kuomintang (KMT) administration handling cross-strait relations as if they were affairs between the ruling party and its communist counterpart in China.

“We hope China can break free from the KMT-Communist mentality while thinking of cross-strait relations,” Tsai told the press before giving a speech at an event in Taipei. “This will open up new possibilities for cross-strait relations and let cross-strait relations become more stable.”

Tsai was repeating what she has been stressing recently about cross-strait relations being affairs concerning two governments rather than two parties only — namely the KMT and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

The opposition leader, who is set to represent the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in the 2016 presidential race, has also clearly spelled out her support of the cross-strait status quo.

The construction of cross-strait relations into relations between the KMT and CCP has created a lot of problems in the past, and this must not be repeated, said Tsai, who heads the main opposition DPP.

Tsai also criticized President Ma Ying-jeou for encouraging KMT Chairman Eric Chu to visit Chinese leader Xi Jinping in order to strengthen cross-strait relations.

She said the biggest problem that Ma has been making over the past seven years is his failure to make a distinction between party and government affairs.

It has been widely rumored that Chu is going over to China in May to meet with Xi.

But Tsai noted that there has been no official confirmation so far about the Chu-Xi meet, and she declined to make further comments on the rumor.

Tsai also faulted the Cabinet-level Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) for dismissing her open support of the cross-strait status quo as “lacking substantial content.” The MAC said Tsai cannot deal with such a “core matter” with “ambiguities.”

But Tsai said she has been the head of the MAC, and knows that such an important Cabinet body must maintain its neutrality.

She said the MAC had made a “very inappropriate” response to her remarks, and the MAC chief must be blamed for the “mistake.”

She said there are many outstanding people in the MAC, and they must not be used as “political tools.”

Meanwhile, KMT spokesman Yang Wei-chung said the ruling party has always treated cross-strait relations as relations between Taiwan and mainland China, and the DPP chairwoman, who has headed the MAC, knows it.


Specialized Rogers magazine for pension funds managers promotes Islamic bonds without giving the full picture

On April 6, 2015, Benefits Canada / WebArchiveArchive.Today published an article promoting Islamic bonds (sukuk). The magazine is listed as one of many brands belonging to Rogers Media. According to Rogers’ website, “Benefits Canada is written for executive and specialist management responsible for the provision of pension and benefits plans at large Canadian employers.”

“Canadian pension funds invest in emerging market debt,”Benefits Canada’s Associate Editor Yaldaz Sadakova (LinkedIn profile) writes. “So why aren’t Islamic bonds, or sukuk, on the table,” she adds.

In her article, Ms. Sadakova elaborated about the subtleties of this type of bonds and she abundantly referred to Omar Kalair’s experience in the field.

Kalair told Benefits Canada that he was aware that Islamic finance could be associated by media to terrorism, but he was determined to change this perception: “‘With the word Islamic getting negative portrayal in the media, when the [phrase] Islamic finance comes up, it creates a red flag,’ says Kalair. But sukuk don’t fund terrorism, he adds.”

One missing information: Benefits Canada’s Associate Editor Yaldaz Sadakova did not mention that Omar Kalair is currently awaiting his trial for an alleged fraud related to one of his sharia-compliant businesses:

The Globe and Mail / February 19, 2014 – The RCMP has filed fraud charges against a Toronto Islamic financier [Omar Kalair] who went missing after he allegedly pocketed $4.3-million in mortgage payments from Muslim homeowners and used the money to buy himself gold bars, silver coins and electronics.

Omar Kalair portrayed himself as a trailblazing entrepreneur who, as a middleman, could offer mortgage arrangements to devout Muslims who believed that they were forbidden under Islamic law from making interest payments.

Mr. Kalair’s two federally registered firms, UM Financial Inc. and UM Capital Inc., collapsed two years ago, leaving more than 170 homeowners in the lurch.

The RCMP’s Greater Toronto Area Financial Crime Unit announced on Wednesday that the 38-year-old Mr. Kalair is facing criminal charges of theft over $5,000, fraud over $5,000 and laundering proceeds of crime.

According to a statement issued by the RCMP / WebArchiveArchive.Today, Omar Kalair eventually turned himself in on March 6, 2014. He was released on conditions and scheduled for a court appearance on April 2, 2014. No major Canadian newspaper has published anything about the judicial proceedings against Omar Kalair since then.

more at http://pointdebasculecanada.ca/specialized-rogers-magazine-for-pension-funds-managers-promotes-islamic-bonds-without-full-picture/

UCLA prof called racist for correcting spelling and grammar of black students



A UCLA professor was called racist, and guilty of a “micro-aggression” against black students for correcting grammar and spelling issues on their papers. A protest was organized and students claim the professor has created a hostile climate on campus for his actions.

This happened around a year ago but the story is only now going viral. Sadly, we also know that incidents like this one are becoming even more common.

Downtrend reports:

I thought the race debate reached a new low when Gummy Bear maker Haribo was accused of racism for making African mask Gummies, but what happened at UCLA this week makes that look sane. 25 University of California Los Angeles students participated in a sit-in protest because, get this, one of their professors had the gall to correct grammar and spelling issues on some black students’ papers.

Val Rust, a professor of education and information, was the target of the protestors for what they feel was racial insensitivity. Describing themselves as “aggrieved minority students,” they claim that the professor was wrong to correct spelling, punctuation, and grammar in the papers of black students.

Call 2 Action: Graduate Students of Color, the group which launched the sit-in, said the act of correcting a black student was “micro-aggression.” But it’s much worse than you think. The group issued the following statement:

“A hostile campus climate has been the norm for Students of Color in this class throughout the quarter as our epistemological and methodological commitments have been repeatedly questioned by our classmates and our instructor. The barrage of questions by white colleagues and the grammar ‘lessons’ by the professor have contributed to a hostile class climate.”

My question is how will people who are so easily offended function in the real world?

Students with these kinds of issues would be better off if they immediately quit school to seek the psychological help they so desperately need, then come back and complete their education once they’re healed.