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Apr 23, 2008

Lee: Unification/Independence confrontation over

Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), former president and now spiritual leader to the Taiwan Solidarity Union, has made a prophetic-sounding statement in the wake of the TSU's total defeat in the election.

First, the TSU's next moves: dissolve the Central Standing Committee, have a re-registration drive for party members, create a 'Friends of the TSU' organization for those who are sympathetic but not interested in joining the party itself, and switch models to a "soft party."

For those unclear on the soft party/hard party distinction: the major parties in the US are soft. The party apparatus at a national level can influence candidates and members only in a limited manner. Party membership cannot be revoked for voting against the party line -- whether you're a legislator or a citizen voting in the general election. And in general, candidates are ultimately responsible to their constituency, meaning that the Democratic Party of California is very different from the Democratic Party in Kansas or Alaska, just as New York Republicans are quite a different lot than Texas Republicans.

Hard parties, like the ones in Israel, Russia and the KMT and DPP themselves, have a much stronger and centralized decision making apparatus with greater accountability for party members and legislators to the party's central committee.

I heartily endorse the TSU's decision to become a soft party and hope very much the DPP consider the same, but I doubt that will happen very much.

President Lee Teng-hui, in public remarks following the TSU's meeting, said that "the era of confrontation over unification or independence is over," and that what Taiwan needs most right now is a good opposition party which would monitor the government.

I think the unification/independence issue is about to get complicated enough that it won't much resemble the old era, but considering it's an unsettled issue, I don't see how it can be over.


Tim Maddog said...

Say what?! Since when does Lee "I forgot to vote for the referendum" Teng-hui and his redshirt-tainted TSU speak for everybody who still opposes unjust, undemocratic, undesirable, and unwarranted unification?

Tim Maddog

skiingkow said...

Absolutely, Tim!

Lee has said some stupid things lately. This is another. "Confrontation" over unification / independence is obviously not over. Last I heard, there were 1500 missiles pointed at Taiwan and the anti-secession law has not been rescinded.

Of course, if PandaMa hands over Taiwan on a silver platter (which I fully expect he will), the "confrontation" will still not be over since an overwhelming majority of Taiwanese do NOT want to unify. Lee is totally out to lunch on this one.

By the way, Lee "lied" to the public when he said he couldn't vote in the referendum because he forgot a slip of paper. My father-in-law forgot the same piece of paper but was still able to vote.

Taiwan Echo said...

Comparing to most Taiwanese, politicians included, Lee has outstanding foresight into the future. He knew that Ma is gonna be elected, so he started planning for it one year before the voting, by switching to the blue side and by criticizing DPP government but not KMT (let alone Ma) in the past whole year.

His trickery moves during the 2 months right before the Presidential election voting was a clear indication of his intention.

Why did he do that?

Remember Ma was considered a successor of Lee if KMT was not defeated by DPP in 2000. And Lee does treat Ma dearly, feels like his own son.

If DPP wins the President seat this year, Lee's political career is definitely over, 'cos Lee has no way to control or influence any DPP statesman.

But if Ma is elected, Ma will need Lee's help in many ways. For example, fighting against all powers inside KMT, for that Lee is an expert. Lee can help Ma on the relationship with Japan too.

So the residual value of Lee's life depends entirely on Ma's fate, that naturally comes down to this: the only way for Lee to re-enjoy the taste of power is to help Ma elected in anyway he can.

I believe Lee must have helped Ma fight against DPP secretly, by teaching Ma how and when to say or do something. He might even reveal some DPP inside info to Ma.

The first thing Ma did after he was elected was to visit Lee is consistent with this idea. Lee's claim that he will be representing Ma's government to deal with Japan is another testimony.

If we look back at what Lee did in the past year, it is clear that Lee had this all planned out since one year ago.

What bothers me most is why so many green supporters still consider him a godfather of pan green after he aligned himself with the blue and did so many harmful things to pan-green.