Civil powers vs dirty tricks
The first stop of independent Taipei mayoral candidate Ko Wen-je’s (柯文哲) six-day whirlwind visit to the US was the San Francisco Bay Area. During lunch on Wednesday, he met Stanford University professor Fred Gibbons for a discussion on innovation and entrepreneurship and delivered a public speech in the evening in Cupertino.
At 6pm, more than 600 Bay Area Taiwanese Americans arrived at the Dynasty Restaurant in Cupertino to dine with Ko, a physician-turned-politician who has earned the support of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and Taiwan Solidarity Union among others for the Nov. 29 election.
The Taipei mayoral election is set to be the highlight of the nine-in-one elections, which will include the elections of special municipality mayors and councilors, county commissioners, city mayors and councilors, township mayors and councilors, borough and village wardens, and Aboriginal district councilors, covering 11,130 positions in 22 cities and counties.
Taipei mayoral election polls have been favoring Ko by 10 to 15 percent over his Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) rival, Sean Lien (連勝文), son of former vice president and KMT chairman Lien Chan (連戰).
Sean Lien’s great-grandfather, Lien Heng (連橫), was well known for his book General History of Taiwan written in 1920. However, in 1928 he wrote a lengthy article supporting the Japanese opium trade, which ignored the health of Taiwanese. He was spurned by friends and the public alike in Taiwan, resulting in his migration to China.
Sean’s grandfather, Lien Chen-dong (連震東), spent his entire life working as a Chinese government employee. On Nov. 20, 2007, then-vice president Lien Chan called himself “pure Chinese.”
Sean Lien, 44, is a multimillionaire, but he is technically homeless because he has no house registered under his name in Taiwan.
Most Taiwanese are curious as to how he became a multimillionaire, how much money he makes and how much tax he pays each year.
In his speech, Ko promoted his campaign policies of improving social justice, cultural promotion, health and safety and a sense of community for Taipei. He also said that he is facing a big challenge over the MG149 account, which Sean Lien’s camp has alleged to be shrouded in controversy.
The KMT is using this “scandal” as its main focus of attack against Ko. KMT Legislator Lo Shu-lei (羅淑蕾) accused Ko of unlawful behavior and KMT Legislator Alex Fai (費鴻泰) urged Auditor-General Lin Ching-long (林慶隆) to closely examine National Taiwan University Hospital’s surgical intensive care unit’s MG149 account.
The KMT has a habit of firing its arrow first then drawing the target. It discredits the opponent first then looks for evidence. It arrests, jails and tortures first then attempts to find answers. It has repeatedly played the same dirty tricks, questiioning former president Chen Sui-bian’s (陳水扁) state affairs fund in 2008, former DPP secretary-general Su Jia-chyuan’s (蘇嘉全) farm house in 2011 and DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) role in the Yu Chang case in 2012.
These are the dirtiest tricks the KMT has played and Taiwanese should not allow these tricks to be repeated: Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. The nation should stand united in its stance to stop the KMT’s dirty tricks. Just look at how Hong Kongers fight for their rights.
In addition, notice how Hong Kong police only use plain barricades to block demonstrators, but Taiwanese police place sharp barbed wire around the barricades to block petitioners.
Politics is a major game in Taiwan, but electoral events should be played with fairness, justice, compliance and in a peaceful and sporting manner.
Ko said this election is a war of the unarmed “bare hand” fighting against a lying “white thief.” It is a critical moment for the nation. It needs the people to make the right choice and the collective voices to defend Taiwan’s social value and justice.
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