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Cablegate: Media Reaction: U.S. Financial Crisis

VZCZCXYZ0018
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHIN #1393 2670945
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 230945Z SEP 08
FM AIT TAIPEI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9993
INFO RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 8609
RUEHHK/AMCONSUL HONG KONG 0059

UNCLAS AIT TAIPEI 001393

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EAP/TC, EAP/PA, EAP/PD - NIDA EMMONS
DEPARTMENT PASS AIT/WASHINGTON

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR KPAO TW
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: U.S. FINANCIAL CRISIS

Summary: Taiwan's major Chinese-language dailies continued to focus
their coverage September 23 on the growing fears around the island
about the safety of Chinese dairy products; on the probe into former
President Chen Shui-bian's alleged money-laundering cases; and on
Taiwan's sluggish economic situation. In terms of editorials and
commentaries, an op-ed in the mass-circulation "Apple Daily"
discussed the U.S. government's biggest-ever rescue plan to tackle
its financial crisis. The article described it as huge extortion by
Wall Street on the U.S. government and a major kidnapping move of
the U.S. government against the U.S. people and the world. End
summary.

"Wall Street's Big Extortion"

Associate Professor Tao Yi-feng of National Taiwan University's
Department of Political Science noted in an op-ed in the
mass-circulation "Apple Daily" [circulation: 520,000]:

"... It is inconceivable that this largest government rescue in
human history has happened in the United States, which strongly
believes that 'a person must take full responsibility for his own
misfortune.' What is even more ironic is that those who fail to
take responsibility for the consequences [of the financial crisis]
this time are none other than Wall Street, which has full conviction
in the strong men's philosophy of laissez-faire. ... The US$700
billion worth of debt is tantamount to the total expense of the
United States for its war in Iraq; it is also akin to every U.S.
citizen having to shoulder US$2,000 worth of debt for cleaning up
the mess of Wall Street that has gone too far in its money game.
...

"... For Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson Jr., this will be a battle
that allows only success. ... Should it fail, even such a big move
will be unable to rescue [the U.S.], and what [the United States]
will confront will not simply be a deeper collapse of the people's
faith in financial markets, but also an overall breakdown of
people's confidence in the U.S. government. Should that happen, it
will result in global investors's panic dumping of U.S. government
bonds and U.S. dollars, and the world economy will fall into a long
period of panic and depression. Such a rescue plan of the century
can be regarded as a huge extortion by Wall Street on the U.S.
government and a large kidnapping move by the U.S. government
against the American people and the world. But we all have to pray
that it will succeed."

YOUNG

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