Is Hsieh Waiting for Fortune to Smile on Him?
United Daily News editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
March 19, 2008
Election day is three days away. Will Taiwan undergo a second regime change?
Political scientist Samuel Huntington's trademark is the "Two Turnover Test." Huntington said that when a nation transitions from an "emergent democracy" to a "stable democracy," it must undergo two democratic and peaceful regime changes.
He said that after an emergent democracy's first regime change, the new regime often reverts to authoritarian rule, trampling over democratic institutions and undermining the rule of law. Therefore the nation must undergo a second regime change. Only after passing the Two Turnover Test can it move to the next stage, a stable democracy.
Huntington was a veteran political scientist whose academic research often cited the Republic of China as a real world test case. The ROC has followed the steps Huntington outlined. The ROC has gone from authoritarianism to an emergent democracy (first regime change), to betrayal by the new regime, and is currently moving toward a stable democracy (second regime change).
In 2000, Chen Shui-bian was elected president in the ROC's first regime change. The core issue in this year's Blue vs. Green Presidential showdown is whether the ROC will undergo a second regime change.
Strictly speaking, the January 12 ROC Legislative Elections already ushered in a second regime change. The KMT won over two-thirds of the seats in the Legislative Yuan. The Blue camp won over three-quarters. In other words, the Democratic Progressive Party won less than one-quarter of the seats. The election returns were a draconian verdict rendered upon the Democratic Progressive Party's political legitimacy. Realistically speaking, the voters nullified the ruling Democratic Progressive Party's political credentials on January 12. They essentially announced a second regime change.
Metaphorically speaking, a DPP presidency is akin to an appendix. The question in the upcoming presidential election is whether the new body, consisting of a Pan Blue legislature enjoying a three-fourths majority, and a KMT cabinet, has any use for a leftover DPP appendix. Wouldn't it be better off with a whole new body? Wouldn't it be better to simply perform an appendectomy?
Frank Hsieh vowed to be a "Little President" who would fulfill a "Great Mission." He promised to be a "Passive President" who would "check and balance" a KMT cabinet and a KMT legislature. In fact, such an absurd arrangement would be contrary to all political sense. In the wake of eight constitutional "amendments," better described as constitutional perversions, such an arrangement would eventually precipitate a constitutional crisis. Show us the article in the Republic of China Constitution that calls for a president to check and balance the cabinet and the legislature? Even France's Fifth Republic relies on an alternative form of executive power to restrain its two chief executives, the president and the prime minister. Our constitution, in its current form, has no such provisions. Therefore such an arrangement would be a constitutional catastrophe waiting to happen. On January 12, 2008, the ROC underwent a second regime change. Is this second regime change to be confined to the cabinet and legislature, but not the executive?
Amending the constitution has led to disaster. The voters must decide whether they are going to fall for Frank Hsieh's "Little President with a Great Mission" pitch.
Following the lifting of martial law 20 years ago, the ROC underwent the step-by-step process Huntington outlined. It underwent its first regime change. It endured a new regime that betrayed democracy, undermined the rule of law, and subverted society's values. Sure enough, it is now undergoing a second regime change. But Huntington never expected those who amended (undermined) the Republic of China Constitution to provide themselves with a huge loophole, stipulating that the legislature would undergo change, but the presidency wouldn't. That the powers and responsibilities of the president, his cabinet, and the legislature would be left undefined. What should we call the consequences of this loophole? A consolidation of democracy? Or a constitutional crisis in the making?
Chen Shui-bian once boasted: "So what if l lucked out? The fact is I was elected. So what are you going to about it?" His attitude reflected the impudence of a street thug, and the same lack of responsibility. To him the election was all about trickery, about getting lucky. He felt not one iota of concern for constitutional rule. Now Frank Hsieh is waiting for fortune to smile on him, thinking to himself, "So what are you going to do about it?"
Confronted with such an attitude, even Huntington would be left speechless.
2008.03.19 02:41 am
「兩次輪替檢定說」（two-turn-over test） 是政治學大師杭廷頓的著名學說。 他說，從「民主轉型」到「民主鞏固」， 必須以「政權經過兩次民主而和平的轉移」為基本要件。
杭氏指出，許多新興民主國家， 在發生「第一次政黨輪替」後， 取代舊政權的新政權往往反而與民主化背道而馳， 違反民主精神， 破壞民主法治機制， 因此必須再有「第二次政黨輪替」。 他說，經過「第二次政黨輪替」的「檢定」後， 「民主轉型」始可望達到「民主鞏固」。
杭氏不愧為大師， 在他的學術研究中， 台灣常常成為他的舉例， 而今日台灣政治民主化的道路， 也正一步一步穿過杭廷頓的預言： 威權政治→民主轉型（第一次政黨輪替）→新政權背叛民主→會不會發生 「第二次政黨輪替」（民主鞏固）？
二○○○年， 民進黨的陳水扁當選總統， 是「第一次政黨輪替」； 今年總統大選藍綠激戰， 核心議題正是「第二次政黨輪替」。
其 實， 就政治事實而言， 台灣在今年一月十二日的立法委員選舉中， 已經完成了「第二次政黨輪替」。 國民黨贏得立院逾三分之二的席次， 若以泛藍計則逾四分之三； 民進黨僅得不及四分之一席次。 這樣的投票結果， 當然是嚴厲無比的政治懲罰， 民進黨政權的代表性、 正當性已被選民重重地否定。 所以，就政治事實而言， 或就政權的「合法正當性」（Legitimacy）而言， 民進黨政權在一月十二日已被選民否棄， 亦即在事實上， 選民已經頒布了「第二次政黨輪替」的「令狀」。
因此， 若從現今的政府解剖圖來看， 總統職位如今只是民進黨舊體制僅存的最後一根盲腸； 這次總統大選的意義， 就某種角度言， 於是就成了要不要在新的體制中 （泛藍國會四分之三／國民黨組閣） 留下一根民進黨的總統盲腸？ 還是要顧全新體制的整合， 而一併割掉這根盲腸？
謝 長廷說，他要以「小總統」， 實踐「大使命」； 又說， 要以「消極總統」來「制衡」國民黨的內閣與國會。 這種災難性的場景， 恐怕有違政治生理； 但在八次修憲以致毀憲後， 若果真發生盲腸作祟為患的情事， 必會演成憲政危機。 用「總統」來「制衡」內閣及國會， 請問這是根據中華民國憲法的哪一條規定？ 即使法國的「第五共和制」中， 也是以「行政權換軌制」來節制「雙首長」的界際； 但是，我們的現行憲法卻全無此類規範， 以致一場憲政災難正在眼前醞釀。 在一月十二日， 台灣已經跨入「第二次政黨輪替」的門檻， 但難道內閣及國會要「第二次政黨輪替」， 卻只有總統「不輪替」？
修憲已經誤設了災難陷阱， 無人可以補救； 現在要由手中握有選票的選民， 來決定台灣要不要跳進這個 「小總統／大制衡」的火坑？
台 灣在解嚴後的二十年來， 一步步穿過杭廷頓所預言的道路， 曾經發生了「第一次政黨輪替」， 也曾經發生了新政權全面徹底地背叛了民主法治與台灣價值， 如今果然也跨入了「第二次政黨輪替」的新境……。 然而，杭廷頓始料未及的是： 台灣的修憲者在憲政中挖了一個 「國會大輪替／總統不輪替」及 「總統／內閣／國會／權責不明」的大火坑。 這將是「鞏固民主」， 或是「憲政災難」？
陳水扁有一句政治名言： 「阿嘸就算我好運，我就是當選了，嘸你嘜安吶？」 這是賭徒的口氣， 絕無一絲一毫的責任意識； 這也是將選舉全部歸諸技巧與手氣， 而無一絲一毫的憲政關懷。 現在，謝長廷也正在等待他的「好運」， 嘸你嘜安吶？