Brian Hioe

Olympics Reactions Point To Trump Administration’s Refusal To Back Away From Brinkmanship

While it should not be surprising that while both North Korea and South Korea hope to avoid a war which would be costly for both sides, members of the Trump administration initially remained more interested in brinkmanship and making threats against perceived threats. This has been visible in the Pyeongchang Olympics... Read More

Chinese Hip Hop Ban Signals Crackdown On Artistic Subcultures

A recent ban on hip hop on Chinese television and radio may be vaguely humorous, seeing as even just a month prior to the ban, Chinese state-run media was singing the praises of Chinese hip hop as a nationalistic export. Nevertheless, the unexpected nature of the ban evidences how quickly Chinese authorities react against social trends they see as threatening at present, as well as how the window for free expression in China—which has always been restricted when it came to politically sensitive topics—is sharply moving in a socially conservative direction... Read More

Will Guosheng Reactor Restarts Lead To Protest?

The announcement this week by state-run power utility Taipower that it plans to seek approval from the Atomic Energy Commission for restarts of a nuclear reactor at Guosheng Nuclear Power Plant should be of little surprise. Namely, even if little discussed, the Tsai administration quietly approved nuclear reactor restarts in June of last year. It remains to be seen whether it will not only be the Guosheng Nuclear Power Plant reactor that is approved for restarts... Read More

Local Controversy Over Plans For Ruifang Coal-Fired Plant

A local controversy has broken out over plans by Taipower to build a coal-fired power plant in the Nanao Fishing Harbor in Ruifang District in eastern New Taipei City at an existing facility. In particular, Taipower has been criticized with the view that it is attempting to unilaterally go through with construction of the plant despite lack of adequate public discussion of the issue, attempting in that way to shrug off environmental and health concerns for local residents... Read More

Seven Hour Police Detention Of Sports Reform Activist Provokes Outrage

Anger has broken out from Taiwanese activists over the detention and questioning of sporting reform association Fair Game! TAIWAN! member Zhang Youxuan by police at the behest of the Chinese Taipei Volleyball Association. On Tuesday, Zhang was detained for over seven hours on charges of illegally eavesdropping on a closed door meeting was held between officials of the Chinese Taipei Volleyball Association and the Sports Administration of the Ministry of Education, and refused to allow to leave into the late night in spite of the 6.4-magnitude earthquake that struck Hualien on Tuesday night. The detention seems to have occurred at behest of the Chinese Taipei Volleyball Association, which sought to press charges against Zhang... Read More

Hualien Earthquake Tragic, Raises Questions Regarding Disaster Preparedness For Taiwan

Tragedy has broken out in Hualien following an earthquake at 11:50 PM yesterday that registered 6.4 on the Richter scale. At least five are dead, 254 are injured, and 88 missing following the quake. The Hualien earthquake also raises the possibility of a future uptick in seismic activity in Taiwan, raising the need to address longstanding issues concerning building safety codes and disaster preparedness in Taiwan, as well as touching on the debate regarding nuclear energy and its suitability to Taiwan... Read More

Four Referendum Campaigns Launched In The Two Months After Changes To Referendum Act

Amending the so-called “Birdcage Referendum Act” has long been a demand of Taiwanese activists. In particular, holding a nationwide referendum was seen as a way to settle long-standing domestic issues in Taiwanese politics, such as with regards to the usage of nuclear energy in Taiwan, as well as the fundamental issue of independence versus unification, which goes to the heart of Taiwan’s unique political situation in global politics. It may not be too surprising, then, that calls for referendum have now become an object of political contestation on a number of issues. At least four campaigns for referendum are now under way in Taiwan that have been launched in the two months since changes to the Referendum Act in December of last year... Read More
Brian Hioe

Brian Hioe


Brian Hioe was one of the founding editors of New Bloom. He is a freelance writer on social movements and politics, occasional translator, and currently a Democracy and Human Rights Service Fellow at the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy. A New York native and Taiwanese-American, he has an MA in East Asian Languages and Cultures from Columbia University and graduated from New York University with majors in History, East Asian Studies, and English Literature. 丘琦欣,創建破土的編輯之一,專於撰寫社會運動和政治的自由作家偶而亦從事翻譯工作。他是出生於紐約的台裔美人。他自哥倫比亞大學畢業,是亞洲語言及文化科系的碩士,同時擁有紐約大學的歷史,東亞研究及英文文學三項學士學位。