Planned Workouts and scheduled races

Every Wednesday: Bigfoot Cycle Workout (Dali) 5:15 am
Every Saturday: Bigfoot Swim Workout (Dali) 6:00 am

8/28 Vision Bigfoot Duathlon (Qingshui) 8:00 am
9/4 Taiwan P.E. University Cup 5000m 4:00 pm
10/1 Beauty of Taidong Triathlon (Olympic Distance) 8:00 am
10/30 Gaomei Wetland Marathon (Qingshui) - (Marathon distance) 6:00 am
11/5 NeverStop West Coast Bike Race (200km) 5:00 am *
11/13 Taoyuan National Marathon (Marathon distance) - TBA 11/20 Mizono Marathon Relay
12/18 Fubon Taipei Marathon (Marathon distance) 7:00 am (Boston Marathon qualifying attempt)

* reconsidering the NeverStop race due to the date change to November, which would result in four race weekends (perhaps five if the Supau Cup is on 11/27) in a row.


Thursday, July 14, 2011

Government of Reaction - not Proaction

The problem of government reacting to problems rather than being proactive to prevent them is a global phenomenon. All around the world, we see governments respond to problems of law and/or enforcement only after tragedy has struck and innocent lives have been lost that could have been prevented.

Earlier this year here in Taichung, innocent people lost their lives in an illegally operating nightclub that was registered as a restaurant. These type of businesses have been an open secret in Taichung for years, yet the government did little or nothing to address the problem. That changed with the high profile deaths of innocent patrons and the decreasing popularity of an already relatively unpopular mayor.

This morning's Taipei Times addressed the topic in this morning's editorial. Compass Magazine has also commented on this situation, both showing considerable sympathy to the bar owners. Unlike those media outlets, I have absolutely ZERO sympathy for those business owners.

The Taipei Times claimed that "(the) pub owners, who in some cases had been operating openly for 10 years or more, used a legal loophole set up by the government". Factually, this is not the case. The pub owners did not use a legal loophole. A legal loophole is using provisions within the law in order to circumvent the spirit of the law. This is not what happened. Many of these pub owners actually violated the law. They registered as restaurants but operated as pubs. This is in contravention to the law, not exploiting a loophole. There is a fundamental difference. The fact that the local government overlooked it for many years does not change the fact that they were operating illegally.

I used to live in a building with one of these illegally operating pubs on the ground floor. Such operations are illegal in residential buildings for a reason and it caused no small amount of problems for us, who had a newborn infant at the time of our residence there. One morning, we were all awakened at 5AM to a pub fight in which the front facade was shatterred in a drunken rage. At that point, we moved out of the building. This business was allowed to keep operating despite many calls to the police and despite the clear fact that it was operating illegally.

Who do I blame? I blame the business owners for operating illegal businesses in residential buildings/areas. I also blame the local government and Mayor Jason Hu for a lack of enforcement of laws designed to protect the legitimate rights of residents of the city. I feel no sympathy at all for the business owners or the patrons of these illegal establishments. They made lives miserable for thousands of residents for many years. It is too bad that it has taken a tragedy to get the local government to enforce the law, but I fully support the efforts of the local government to do this, as belated as it is.

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