Fri, Oct 10, 2003 - Page 8 News List

First construct a solid foundation

By Chiu Hei-yuan 瞿海源

The referendum issue is typical of the vicious struggle between the government and opposition and their total lack of sincerity and rationality. Unless the political parties begin to seriously deal with this issue, there will be a heavy price to pay for all of them, not to mention the adverse impact on domestic political developments.

For a referendum to have legitimacy and be helpful in solving a political problem, there must be a solid legal foundation. Every political party should support the pro-mulgation of referendum-related legislation, and emotions and plotting should be removed from the promulgation process. Benefits and problems arising from public affairs and referendum results should first be thoroughly considered and regulated in complete and detailed legislation.

Although it is hard to hope for rational passage of referendum-related legislation in the current climate of opposition between the blue and green camps, I want to take this opportunity to call for all parties to take a square look at the issue and solve it. The ruling and opposition parties are thickheaded losers that only know how to argue, but not how to solve issues. It seems they won't stop arguing until things collapse altogether.

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) says that it will hold referendums even without a legal basis. Although it has elevated the referendum issue to the level of a basic democratic right in an attempt to rid itself of restrictions on holding a referendum in the absence of legislation, there is no legal institution to organize a referendum. At the same time, it cannot break down the opposi-tion's boycott strategy, and it has no plan on how to respond to the serious political clash that may result from a referendum.

Adopting the tough attitudes of an opposition party while being a weak ruler taking advantage of being in power seems like a bold political gamble, or even like gambling for the sake of gambling, without any hope of winning. They call it concern over the future of Taiwan, without thinking of Tai-wan at all.

The Chichi referendum ended in a landslide victory against building an incinerator. If the opposition initiates referendums across the land, taking advantage of the universal tendency of local residents to consider their own interests and protest against the construction of many environmental-protection projects, the DPP will be immediately mired in a serious political crisis.

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) has always had serious doubts concerning democracy and deregulation, and has never dared face issues such as the referendum issue. During its time in power, it placed a complete block on similar demands and suppressed public opinion. Since losing power, all it ever does is boycott. It has no intent to understand or respect public opinion, and relies on excessive plotting to engage in political gambling.

At the extraordinary legislative session in July, it clearly demonstrated its opinions by suddenly lending its support to the creation of a referendum law. What's more, it did so in an extremely ugly way, by maliciously supporting DPP Legislator Trong Chai's (蔡同榮) version of the law, which it previously resisted. The main reason for this was to make the government look bad.

Such political moves, completely devoid of sincerity and rationality, demonstrate that the KMT has no ideals or core ideas,that it knows only struggle and doesn't care for the nation's interests.

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