Thursday, October 16, 2008

Tsai Ing-wen: DPP Savior or Sinner?

Tsai Ing-wen: DPP Savior or Sinner?
United Daily News editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
A Translation
October 16, 2008

Tsai Ing-wen is the Chairperson of the Democratic Progressive Party, at what is unquestionably a watershed moment in history. Her central mission should be to lead the DPP out of the nightmare created by Chen Shui-bian. She must not allow the DPP to fall back into Chen Shui-bian's clutches.

Tsai Ing-wen herself said her goal was to create an "era without Chen Shui-bian" for the Democratic Progressive Party. Now however, the DPP is slipping out of Tsai Ing-wen's grasp. It is once again becoming Chen Shui-bian's hostage. Tsai Ing-wen was originally seen as the savior of the DPP. If she fails to live up to her historic mission, will she instead become the DPP's irredeemable sinner?

Tsai Ing-wen failed to set standards of right and wrong for the Democratic Progressive Party. She failed to make a clean break with Chen Shui-bian. Now Chen Shui-bian is billing himself as "Ma Ying-jeou's first political prisoner," as the "standard bearer for Taiwan independence," and the "founder of a Taiwan independence trust fund." He is joining the DPP's protest march against Chen Yunlin. The march has become Chen Shui-bian's political baptism. The Green camp will forgive his sins. It will grant him a special dispensation or amnesty. The march has become Chen Shui-bian's rehabilitation ceremony. Once again, he will again ascend to the throne, as the "Godfather of Taiwan independence" and the "spiritual leader of the DPP." Once that happens, the DPP will no longer be able to break with A Bian, in spirit or in practice. Even the DPP's provision that "if Chen is found guilty in the first instance, he will be expelled from the party" will not rid the DPP of Chen Shui-bian.

Some people within the Democratic Progressive Party are aware of the danger. Some want Chen Shui-bian to stay away from the march, "even if they have to get down on their knees and beg." Others suggest that if Chen Shui-bian joins the march, "he must not be allowed to ascend the podium." But who is willing to kneel before Chen Shui-bian? Will kneeling before Chen Shui-bian motivate him to give the DPP a break? Actually, for all intents and purposes, the DPP has been kneeling before Chen Shui-bian since March 22. It has been hoping for mercy. It has been hoping for a way out. Yet Chen Shui-bian has chosen to rest his boot on Tsai Ing-wen's neck and mock her as weak and incompetent. Tsai Ing-wen thinks politics is a duty and a calling. Chen Shui-bian thinks politics is a game of life and death.

Tsai Ing-wen has already become a victim of a domino effect she herself arranged. She failed to denounce Chen Shui-bian's greed and corruption when she had the chance. She failed to challenge Chen Shui-bian's claim to be the "standard-bearer for Taiwan independence." She was unable to repudiate Chen's claim as "standard-bearer for Taiwan independence" because she failed to establish a standard for right and wrong. She missed one opportunity after another to repudiate Chen Shui-bian. Chen Shui-bian took advantage of every opportunity she offered him. Eventually Huang Ching-ling created a scene at DPP Party Headquarters. The DPP Central Committee, having declared that "if Chen is found guilty in the first instance, he will be expelled from the party," was unable to refute Chen's brand of Taiwan independence, and had no excuse to prevent Chen Shui-bian from joining the march. If A Bian can join the protest march, why can't he shake hands with Tsai Ing-wen? If he can shake hands with Tsai Ing-wen, why can't he march beside her? If he can march beside her, why can't he speak from the same podium? If he can speak from the same podium, why can't he participate in the same candlelight vigil? How therefore, can this so-called 500,000 person mass movement not become a political baptism for Chen Shui-bian? How can it not become a rehabilitation ceremony for Chen Shui-bian, the alleged "standard-bearer for the Taiwan independence movement." Looking ahead to next year's County and Municipality Elections, who will stop Chen Shui-bian from ascending the podium and endorsing the DPP? Looking ahead, suppose Chen Shui-bian is found guilty in the first instance and sentenced to a maximum of 10 years in prison, but remains eligible to run for president? Chen opposed the DPP Committee for Clean Government's move to expel him in the event he is found guilty. Chen is unwilling to relinquish the possibility of running for re-election on behalf of the DPP. Looking forward, when Chen Shui-bian is found guilty in the third instance, can the DPP Central Committee forbid the masses to take to the streets to demand amnesty? Looking forward, if Chen Shui-bian is granted amnesty, won't he return to lead the DPP?

Tsai Ing-wen's historic mission is to create a Democratic Progressive Party that doesn't include Chen Shui-bian. Ironically, she has allowed the DPP to slip back into Chen Shui-bian's clutches. Actually, toward the end of President Chen Shui-bian term of office, Tsai Ing-wen had her own feelings about Chen and the DPP. The turned down a medal Chen Shui-bian presented in her honor. She turned down the SEF chairmanship. She turned down the position of Campaign Manager for the Hsieh/Su presidential ticket, Taipei City region. Also, when she was elected party chairman, her first thought was to "save the party by dumping A Bian." Who would have imagined she would wind up presiding over Chen Shui-bian's rehabilitation? Is Fate toying with Man? Or is Man creating his own Fate? Who knew it would come to this?

Tsai Ing-wen blundered, through a soft heart and a soft head. She mistakenly assumed Chen Shui-bian lacked the ability to destroy the Democratic Progressive Party, yet again. Chen Shui-bian wants to hijack the DPP, yet again. He wants to shatter Tsai Ing-wen's dream of "saving the party by dumping A Bian." If Tsai Ing-wen dares to lash back at Chen Shui-bian, she will be pelted with water bottles thrown by the mob. Tsai Ing-wen realizes she is no match for A Bian, the "Comeback Kid." Her conscience has been dulled; her sense of mission diluted. A terror that the mob will reject her is her overriding concern. As a result, during Chen Shui-bian's rehabilitation ceremony, Tsai Ing-wen might just earn that medal Chen Shui-bian tried to give her.

Visualize if you will, Tsai Ing-wen and Chen Shui-bian marching, side by side. Visualize if you will, Tsai Ing-wen and Chen Shui-bian maintaining a candlelight vigil, side by side. Now visualize Tsai Ing-wen marching with Ferdinand Marcos of the Philippines, side by side. Now visualize Tsai Ing-wen maintaining a candlelight vigil with Alberto Fujimori of Peru, side by side. Tsai Ing-wen, are you the same Tsai Ing-wen elected DPP Chairperson on May 18?

2008.10.16 02:57 am



蔡英文未能明快果敢地建立民進黨的「大是大非」,未能及時與陳水扁切割;如今陳水扁將以「馬英九的第一個政治犯」及「台獨旗手」、「建國基金金主」的身 分,參加民進黨抗議陳雲林來訪的大遊行。對於陳水扁來說,這場大遊行儼然是一場政治洗禮,他的一切罪孽將獲得綠營的理解、寬容或赦免;這場大遊行也形同一 場復辟大典,他將再度坐上「台獨教主」與「民進黨精神領袖」的神聖王座。此後,民進黨將再也無法在精神上或實體上與扁切割,即使「一審有罪除名」也不可能 甩掉陳水扁。

民進黨內當然有人看得出這個危機,甚至有人主張勸請阿扁不要參加遊行,「就算用跪的也得跪!」另有人主張,即使陳水扁參加遊行,「也絕對不可讓扁上台!」 然而,誰去跪陳水扁?跪了陳水扁他就會放過你民進黨?其實,三二二以後,民進黨不啻就是跪對陳水扁,希望他能有一念慈悲,放黨一條生路,但陳水扁竟踩在蔡 英文屈膝的弓背上睥睨譏嘲她的懦弱無能。蔡英文以為政治是「負責任的志業」,陳水扁卻認定政治就是「妳死我活」。

蔡英文已經陷於自己親手排列的骨牌效應之中:未能在第一時間批判陳水扁的貪與腐,因此亦未能在第一時間否定陳水扁作為「台獨旗手」的地位;由於「大是大 非」未能確立,並一再錯失切割時機,使得「有縫就鑽/有風就飛」的陳水扁,終於累積出黃慶林大鬧黨中央的局面;既然黨中央認定「一審有罪再說」,又不能駁 正「扁記台獨」的政治操作,遂亦不能禁阻陳水扁參加遊行。而扁既能參加遊行,為何不能與蔡英文見面握手?既能見面握手,為何不能並肩遊行?既能並肩遊行, 為何不能同台演講?既能同台演講,為何不能同場守夜?如此一來,這場號稱五十萬人的群眾活動,豈不成了陳水扁去罪化的政治洗禮?又豈不成了陳水扁「台獨旗 手」的復辟大典?接下來,往前推測,一直到明年底縣市長選舉,難道誰能阻止陳水扁為民進黨站台?再往前推,陳水扁若一審判刑十年以下,將仍具參選總統資 格,這是他反對廉政會「一審有罪除名」的原因,因為他不願喪失再代表民進黨參選總統的可能性;再往前推,陳水扁三審定讞時,黨中央又如何禁阻群眾上街主張 特赦?再往前推,陳水扁若蒙特赦,難道不會「再回來領導」民進黨?

蔡英文自期的歷史使命是「開創一個沒有陳水扁的民進黨」,但是如今她卻將民進黨一步一步交回陳水扁的魔掌之中。其實,在陳水扁總統任期後段,蔡英文對當時 的陳水扁與民進黨皆有其心證及評價,她婉謝了陳水扁為她贈勳,拒絕了陳水扁欲任命她出任海基會董事長等職,並回絕出任「謝蘇配」的台北市競選總幹事;然 而,她出任黨主席,原本自當亦有「去扁救黨」的思維,不料如今竟然可能成為親手為陳水扁籌辦復辟大典的黨主席。天作孽耶?自作孽耶?造化弄人,竟至於斯!

蔡英文顯係誤於一念之仁與一念之愚,錯以為陳水扁沒有「二度摧毀」民進黨的能力,更錯以為陳水扁沒有摧毀她蔡英文的能力;但是,陳水扁如今非但要再次挾持 民進黨,也要使蔡英文「去扁救黨」的天真幻夢徹底摧毀。蔡英文此時若敢回擊陳水扁,她也必將遭台下群眾丟寶特瓶。蔡英文已經驚覺自己技不如扁,回天乏術; 她的良知與使命感漸漸退縮與扭曲,害怕遭群眾唾棄的恐懼成為她的主宰意識。於是,在陳水扁的復辟大典上,蔡英文將可實至名歸地領受陳水扁頒給她的勳獎。


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