Demagogue shows his face
Perhaps Taiwan is not ready for democracy -- half of Taiwan anyway. An election under the Constitution is what everyone started out with. In the end, dissatisfied with the result, a childish and petulant Lien Chan (
essentially a mob to gather strength and inciting the people to violent emotions. In a mature democracy, the candidates know what is at stake in
carrying out the constitutional
mandated election procedures (even in a contested election), and they call for calm, not
protests at the local DPP office.
What the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) did was to give a good idea of just what a KMT-led government would be capable of. Instead of contesting the election under the law (which he will do in any event), Lien vented his bad feelings in losing the election by chancing civil war or anarchy. He showed us the KMT way is the way of the mob: against reason, against law and against the Constitution.
Of course in a democracy there will be close elections. Of course there will be contested elections, and there will be recounts. Of course one side will be disappointed and the other jubilant. It is the way of a democracy. Of course the KMT is disappointed. If the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lost, its supporters would have been disappointed, too. But the good thing about democracy is the peaceful transition of government. Nothing in a democracy could have been accomplished by taking a 10,000-strong crowd, led by the pouting Lien, to the Presidential Office. The recount will not be advanced
by a mob. It should not be performed under the pressure or intimidation of a mob. The election is a matter of voting and tabulating. There are emotions, but of course, a sensible party leader will keep his supporters in line, and make
sure they do not disturb the Constitution, the law and the democracy. That is the point, isn't it?
Watching the frightening display tonight, which went into the wee hours, with a flowing mob confronting and attacking police, throwing bottles and driving trucks into barricades, it was clear the KMT supporters had been whipped into a frenzy that convinced them they would either succeed to power legally, or seize it by the mob if they
didn't like the result. The KMT showed it would be perfectly satisfied with mob rule. I saw tonight that the KMT doesn't really like democracy -- it craves only power.
At the DPP celebration after the election, the 10,000 supporters gathered there were told it was a chance to show the world Taiwan's best face,
its democracy in full order, its Constitution working. People were told to behave, and to show the world how a mature democratic people can be. At the KMT rally, Lien refused to concede the election and exhorted his followers in a teary, petulant speech to march to the Presidential Office and demand a recount.
Under the Constitution, all he has to do is ask. It's part of the election process and no mob scenes are required.
Watching Lien tonight sulking and pouting on the podium, it made me realize for the first time how close we have come to a violent overthrow of government. It appeared to me that Lien and many in the KMT believe they are letting the DPP rule at the KMT's pleasure (as if the DPP leased Taiwan from the KMT for four years), and if the KMT doesn't like what happens, they will step in and change it.
They might try the election first, but if that doesn't work....
It would not be a surprise to me to watch Lien and his ilk plan and carry out such a move. It is people such as this that are the tyrants and dictators in many oppressed countries throughout the world. In fact, the more you look at it, the more the KMT looks like the Chinese Communist Party.
How sad for Taiwan. One can only hope the recount doesn't spark a further embarrassing spectacle courtesy of the KMT if the result isn't what they want. It seems the KMT is simply not willing to be denied power for another four years.
Lee Long Hwa
The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) has a good reason to avoid a split vote against the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in next month’s presidential election. It has been here before and last time things did not go well. Taiwan had its second direct presidential election in 2000 and the nation’s first ever transition of political power, with the KMT in opposition for the first time. Former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) was ushered in with less than 40 percent of the vote, only marginally ahead of James Soong (宋楚瑜), the candidate of the then-newly formed People First Party (PFP), who got almost 37
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) presidential candidate and New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi (侯友宜) has called on his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) counterpart, William Lai (賴清德), to abandon his party’s Taiwanese independence platform. Hou’s remarks follow an article published in the Nov. 30 issue of Foreign Affairs by three US-China relations academics: Bonnie Glaser, Jessica Chen Weiss and Thomas Christensen. They suggested that the US emphasize opposition to any unilateral changes in the “status quo” across the Taiwan Strait, and that if Lai wins the election, he should consider freezing the Taiwanese independence clause. The concept of de jure independence was first
Many news reports about the Israel-Hamas war highlight casualties, deaths, and destruction. Journalists rarely delve into how either society has responded and mobilized to deal with the war. This article provides a brief view of how Israel and Israelis have reacted to the war as individuals, groups, and as a nation. A useful template for Taiwan to prepare for a potential future conflict with the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is how Israelis self-organized to deal with this crisis. Prior to the Hamas terrorist attack on Oct. 7, Israelis were even more polarized about public policy than the US or Taiwan.
Following the failure of the proposed “blue-white alliance,” New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi named Broadcasting Corp of China (BCC) chairman Jaw Shaw-kong (趙少康) as his running mate on the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) presidential ticket, while the other prospective half of the alliance, Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) Chairman and presidential candidate Ko Wen-je (柯文哲), named TPP Legislator Cynthia Wu (吳欣盈). The result is a three-horse race, which is getting tighter. Hou and Ko are likely to put all their focus on being seen as the top challenger to Vice President William Lai (賴清德), the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) candidate, to