Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Is the Epoch Times a real news network?

they used the excuse of “assembly without permit” to prosecute these two innocent housewives.
Organizing an assembly without a permit happens to be against the law in Singapore, and it is a rule which has been established according to all Rule of Law principles - it is a just law. Hence, it is not an "excuse", nor can the housewives properly be called "innocent." I doubt there were only two people on the scene, though, which is what is implied.

Later, the judge in the Singapore court used reasons such as “freedom of speech is not absolute” to give an unjust verdict.
There is no absolute freedom of speech, nor can there ever be. It is always bound by other laws, such as defamation. The use of the word "unjust" in this sentence is misleading; it implies that the judgment was not in conformance with the law in Singapore, and this has yet to be determined. (I am assuming that the convicted persons have appealed.)

The unjust verdict against Falun Gong practitioners may be an opportunity for the world and international human rights organizations to review Singapore’s legal system and institutions, especially Singapore’s practice and protection of United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Again, it is not unjust. Fact 1: The "world and international human rights organizations" have no right to review the laws of any sovereign state. Fact 2: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is not a treaty, and suggestions that it's provisions constitute binding international law are hilarious in reality. (No matter how convincing the theoretical arguments are, and even theoretically, there is a lack of any broad consensus amongst the academics.)

I am surprised that what purports to be a legitimate news network, "The Epoch Times," has seen fit to publish what can be regarded as nothing more than inflammatory nonsense. I refer only to the portions I quoted; I agree that the fact that the Falun Gong has appealed to a working group in the UN is newsworthy.

The Epoch Times might have been adhering to a press statement issued by the Falun Gong, but that is simply bad journalism. Indeed, this sort of journalism is utterly unconvincing; what is needed for an informed public to make a decision is a rendition of the facts, and the list of charges. This has been lacking from all of the Epoch Times coverage of the matter. Indeed, there is no flaw in coverage which is opinionated, as long as the basic facts are also present.

This was, of course, covered (by quoting) in singabloodypore.

[Source: The Epoch Times, 2/5/2005]