Taiwan, at this writing, is evidently on its way to the Chinese mainland. Taiwan is the vanguard of a lithospheric microplate and consists of pieces of island arc preceded by an accretionary wedge of materials coming off the Eurasian Plate and materials shedding forward from the island’s rising mountains. As the plate edges buckle before it, the island has plowed up so much stuff that it has filled in all the space between the accretionary wedge and the volcanic arc, and thus its components make an integral island. It is in motion northwest. For the mainland government in Beijing to be wooing the Taiwanese to join the People’s Republic of China is the ultimate inscrutable irony. Not only will Taiwan inexorably become one with Red China. It will hit into China like a fist in a belly. It will knock up big mountains conference room amsterdam from Hong Kong to Shanghai. It is only a question of time. As an exotic terrane on the verge of collision with a continent, Taiwan is a model not only for the building of the American West but for the application of microplate-tectonic theory to the eastern orogenies and the closing of the proto-Atlantic. In this respect, a plane fare to Taiwan has been described as “a ticket to the Ordovician,” a time when something or other, beyond question, produced the Taconic Orogeny, and if it was not the slamming-in of a conference room leeuwarden continent against North America, then possibly it was the arrival of an exotic island like Taiwan. The analogy becomes wider. South of Taiwan are Luzon, Mindanao, Borneo, Celebes, New Guinea, Java, and hundreds of dozens of smaller islands from the Malay Peninsula to the Bismarck Archipelago. Coming up below them is Australia, palpably moving north, headed for collision with China, with a confusion of microplates lying between. According to microplate theory, as Europe, Africa, and South America closed in upon North America through Paleozoic time, there rode before them an ocean full of Javas, New Guineas, Borneos, Luzons, Taiwans, and maybe hundreds of dozens of smaller islands. The Avalon Peninsula of Newfoundland appears to have been a part of such an island, and the Carolina Slate Belt, and a piece of Rhode Island east of Providence, and Greater Boston.