Sun, Sep 07, 2008 - Page 8 News List


Ma’s absurd surrender?

While every person in Taiwan with common sense always knew that President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) ultimate goal is to surrender and unite with China, he has made it official himself in his interview with the Mexican newspaper El Sol de Mexico on Aug. 26.

He was quoted as saying: “The relationship is a special one, but that relationship is not between two countries …While it is unlikely that double recognition of both sides of the Taiwan Strait can be obtained from any foreign country, we must maintain a peaceful and prosperous relationship with Beijing” (“‘State to state’ theory is dead, Ma says,” Sept. 4, page 1).

This is official surrender. But is it surrender or simply meeting the expectations of his people in the so-called “mainland region”?

Of course, the Presidential Office will continue trying to convince the public that this is not surrender.

What else should we call it? A “diplomatic truce”?

Alex Raymond


Kaohsiung County

While reading Ma’s comments as recorded in El Sol de Mexico, I could not help pondering the days when I would read such “absurdist” authors and playwrights as Samuel Beckett and Eugene Ionesco.

My profound love and concern for Taiwan — especially its students whom I used to teach — leads me to experience a sadness that borders on grief.

Ma gets it right when he says that neither the People’s Republic of China nor the Republic of China allows for the existence of another country or state within its territory. This is by definition the essence of sovereignty.

There presently exist two self-governing and sovereign states on either side of the Taiwan Strait.

Where Ma wanders into absurdist “la-la land” is when he refers to the so-called “1992 consensus.”

Perhaps mine may be considered a naive question posed by an ignorant foreigner, but I will ask it anyway: Does the “1992 consensus” exist in any written form? Was the “1992 consensus” ever recorded or transcribed?

If so, who were the signatories to this document? Did they have the authority vested in them to sign their names on such a document?

The term “1992 consensus” has been bandied about since its birth (or is still birth a more accurate term?). It seems that much could be at stake in regard to this “consensus.” It seems that certain politicians would feign to permit public policy be dictated by this “consensus.”

Certain politicians seem to be willing to allow this “consensus” to set their course and hence that of the nation.

So one would do well to ascertain the legitimacy of the “1992 consensus.”

A thought experiment that I find interesting is to question whether said consensus has any validity in a Taiwanese court. What is the legal basis of this “consensus”?

Perhaps a person with a law degree from Harvard or Yale could answer this question. Has this consensus been vetted or reviewed by any panel of justices?

Most importantly, has anyone consulted the 23 million people living in Taiwan for their opinion on the matter?

Or is the “1992 consensus” at best — at the very best — an empty slogan and empty words with no basis in fact or reality? Is it merely an absurd illusion, or even a delusion?

How can two people or parties maintain two “interpretations” while talking about one thing? In my mind, to do this adds absurdity to a paradox that is already mired in inanity and senselessness.

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