The Kensington Review

Week of 14 September 2009


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This Week's Commentary: Volume VIII, Number 28
Taiwan's Ex-President Gets Life Sentence for Corruption -- Chen Shui-bian was the first Taiwanese president to come from a party other than Chaing Kai-shek's Kuomintang [KMT]. He served eight years in office, years marked by a strong pro-independence policy. He has just received a life sentence for corruption. In Taiwan, whether this is the result of a legal prosecution or a political persecution largely depends on whether one is pro-KMT or a supporter of Mr. Chen's Democratic Progressive Party [DPP]. The evidence suggests that the sentence is a bit harsh but Mr. Chen looks to be guilty. At the same time, the case reeks of political manipulation. [September 14]

Obama Proposes New Regime on Wall Street -- September is a month of sad anniversaries in New York City. On Friday, MSNBC rebroadcast its coverage of the Al Qaeda murders at the World Trade Center that occurred 8 years earlier. The same day, CNBC (its financial sister network) ran a special series of discussions and reports on the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers and the financial collapse of which it was a part a year ago. Last week, President Obama visited the Pentagon to remember all those slain by Usama bin Laden's henchmen and vowed to catch the madman. Yesterday, he was at Federal Hall in Manhattan, telling Wall Street that greater regulation was needed to keep excessive risk-taking in check. While catching UbL would provide a great boost to the cause of justice, reining in the excessive risk-taking on Wall Street will prove far more important to the future security of the US. [September 15]

Viewers Like Leno's New Show More than the Critics Do -- The much anticipated "Jay Leno Show" has aired a couple of times now, and the critics don't seem to like it much. Regular people, though, seem to be tuned in to this earlier version of the "Tonight Show." Fourth-rated NBC won its time slot with 17.7 million watching Mr. Leno. That's the biggest prime time TV audience since the finale of "American Idol" back in May. Whether he can keep this audience remains to be seen, but the program does offer a healthy alternative to cops, lawyers and doctors at 10 pm. [September 16]

US Drops Missile Defense Deployment in Poland, Czech Republic -- The Obama administration has just announced that it is not going forward with the planned missile defense system the Bush administration had promised the Poles and the Czechs. The responses from Warsaw and Prague are, not to put too fine a point on it, bordering on the hysterical. Rather than deploy a small and largely ineffective system in those two countries, the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff have unanimously decided to opt for a bigger, better, and functional system to be deployed years from now. The decision stems from a US intelligence assessment that Iran won't have missiles with the range to hit targets in Eastern Europe for some time. This journal still believes that the best missile defense against a nation like Iran is deterrence. [September 17]

Copyright 2009 by The Kensington Review, Jeff Myhre, PhD, Editor. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent. Produced using Fedora Linux.

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