Sat, Nov 27, 2004 - Page 8 News List

Troubled KMT in state of decline

By Ku Er-teh顧爾德

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) is pathetic. Before the presidential elections, it planned to sell its China Television Company, but was stopped by the Government Information Office.

Next, the pan-green camp launched a high-profile investigation into KMT assets, the Executive Yuan accused the Broadcasting Corporation of China of plundering public assets, and Premier Yu Shyi-kun was quoted as saying that getting back the stolen assets pillaged by the KMT would provide money for elementary and junior high school students to have free textbooks. Recently, the headquarters of China Television Company was impounded due to the Procomp Informatics Co financial scandal.

With access to funds blocked, the KMT said it had problems with capital turnover, was unable to pay salaries and was short of money to fund its election campaign. The leader of the KMT has not only been beaten from pillar to post by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), but even the proposed "nuptials" with the People First Party now seem anything but certain.Without its once-abundant funds, how is the KMT going to fight the upcoming legislative elections?

Presidential Office Secretary-General Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) suggested that it was the moodiness of the KMT Chairman Lien Chan (連戰) that had caused so much chaos in Taiwan. Su's remarks might not be justified since these untamed emotions are not unique to the KMT chairman, and can be found in leaders of both political parties.

For example, President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) "soft coup" allegations revealed that he has still not been able to forgive and forget the incidents from the presidential elections on March 20 until his inauguration on May 20. The difference between the DPP and the KMT is that the DPP has tons of work to take care of: to accumulate and utilize power it must push ahead.

The pan-blues, on the contrary, have nothing to keep them busy. As a result, they can only reminisce about their glorious past and wallow in despair. This is actually not a false accusation brought against the leaders of the pan-blues. For the past few months, apart from questioning the honesty of Chen, the pan-blues have not come up with any constructive ideas in cross-strait policies, or on domestic, diplomatic or national defense issues. Their cross-strait policy is simply a restatement of "one China," and "maintaining the status quo." In domestic affairs, the KMT is merely bidding against the DPP on the national pension issue, and it opposes the DPP's educational reform without putting forward any ideas of its own. The KMT has shown itself unable to take a lead in the growing anti-arms procurement movement. If the pan-blues ruled Taiwan they would not shorten the list for arms procurement, but they currently accuse the DPP of using arms procurement as preparation for independence.

The reason why legislative elections are devoid of excitement is because it is usually up to the opposition -- in this case the blue camp -- to challenge the government and get the debate going. Over the past four years, the KMT has often accused the DPP of not having learned how to govern. Looking at the current situation, we see that the DPP is increasingly capable of ruling but that the blue camp is still the same as it was before March 2000.

Why is this so? Because the blue camp was convinced it would win this year's presidential elections and return to power, so its four years in opposition were spent in the same frame of mind as Chiang Kai-shek's (蔣介石) nationalist forces when they first came to Taiwan in 1949. They were dreaming of the day they would return to power, and didn't bother to reorganize and change regulations they had brought over from China. The KMT is no different from the Chiang administration in this respect.

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