Friday, November 21, 2008

Betrayal: The Fate of All Cronies and Confidants

Betrayal: The Fate of All Cronies and Confidants
United Daily News editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
A Translation
November 21, 2008

During Chen Shui-bian's declaration of Holy War, he alleged that the money in his secret overseas accounts were "nation-building funds." Now "dog eat dog" prevails amidst this den of thieves. The Chen Shui-bian crime family's endless lies have brought them to the end of their rope. The Don and his immediate family are still resorting to all sorts of tricks to wriggle free. But many of their consigliere and underbosses are already behind bars. These underlings shared the pain but not the gain. Let images of them in captivity serve as an unforgettable wake up call for all would-be Yes Men and Bag Men.

Wu Shu-chen has been interrogated by the Special Investigation Unit. She has denied all knowledge of crimes. She has passed the buck on to close aides, and said the cases have nothing to do with her. Ma Yung-cheng helped her file fraudulent claims to State Affairs Funds, but she says she has no knowledge of it. Yu Cheng-hsien leaked the list of judges to vendors, but she says she did not issue any orders. The Koo family gave her a 400 million dollar commission, but she insists it was a "political contribution." She even railed at Tsai Ming-Jer for skimming. Wu Shu-chen has denied any and all guilt. When arrested, Chen Shui-bian shouted "Release these innocent detainees." Their statements reflect the Chen family's two-handed tactics. In public they call for justice. In private they don't even bother spitting out the bones after they swallow someone.

The public is familiar with the Chen family's ability to lie through its teeth. First Daughter Chen Hsing-yu screamed that her father-in-law Chao Yu-chu "might as well commit suicide." Meanwhile, First Son Chen Chi-chung and his wife Huang Jui-ching inisted that their overseas money-laundering was carried out "on orders from his mother." They were using the same tactics. Chen Chi-chung and his wife passed the buck on to his mother. Wu Shu-chen passed the buck on to her retainer and confidant. When things go right, the plunder belongs to them. But when something goes wrong, the responsibility belongs to the underlings who carried out their orders. This truly is the philosophy of crocodiles who don't bother to spit out the bones after eating someone. Chen Chun-ying is Wu is Wu Ching-mao's wife, and Wu Shu-chen's sister-in-law. Chen Chun-ying said, "Now that things have gone awry, Wu Shu-chen is concerned only about her money. She doesn't give a damn about whether the Wu family lives or dies!"

Yeh Sheng-mao, Chief of the Bureau of Investigation, leaked information about the money-laundering investigation to Ah-Bian. Minister of the Interior Yu Cheng-hsien was relegated to the role of messenger boy. He leaked a list of the judges to vendors. This tells us just how far administrative discipline degenerated under Ah-Bian's misrule. Ma Yung-cheng was known as "Ah-Bian's alter ego." He didn't compare to Ah-cheng's close friend Tsai Mei-li and her brother, who acted as go betweens for the Presidential Residence and politically-connected Big Business. This show us that politics is bottomless cesspool. Chen Shui-bian deceived the people and exploited Taiwan. He even deceived his own political party and his comrades.

Chen Shui-bian's eight year reign of cronyism and cronyist culture has reached the stage where he must sacrifice his cronies to save himself. He has reached the end of his rope. Politically, Chen Shui-bian's fate was not the betrayal of one's ideals. Rather it was the final unveiling of the ugly face of extreme selfishness and instrumentalism. Chen Shui-bian treated Chen Cheng-hui, Ma Yung-cheng, and others as tools for corruption. He used them as tools to commit perjury. And finally, he used them to take the fall. Their usefulness as tools has been exhausted. Ah-Bian and Ah-Cheng have, without missing a beat, turned their backs on them. They have now become the prime suspects, the principal offenders. As they struggle to get away, Ah-Cheng's heartlessness leaves us incredulous.

Is the Green Camp still confused about Chen Shui-bian's selfishness? He was elected president eight years ago on a wave of social reform and and demands for clean government. But soon after taking office, "National Polcy Advisors" were discarded like old shoes. He recruited Tang Fei to form a cabinet. But months later, he announced that "a large stone [in my way] has been removed." During his term he changed Premiers six times. What were these high officials but disposable tools? This includes his "Join the UN Referendum," his "Rectification of Names and Purging of Chiang Kai-shek References," and his "Scorched Earth Diplomacy." In the end what were they, but tools to cover up his incompetence and corruption? What's more, Chen Shui-bian's phony donations to Taiwan independence elder Wu Li-pei dragged him into Chen's money-laundering scandal. A mere 30 million in the Longtan Scandal has ruined James Li. Does the Green Camp still believe that he is a noble warrior for Taiwan independence?

In this major case of corruption by a head of state, the mastermind remains outside the law. Instead, various and sundry relatives and confidants have wound up behind bars. This perverse scenario represent a disastrous disruption of the island's democratic politics. Its final repercussions remain to be seen. Chen has betrayed his underlings. Let their fates serve as lessons for those willing and eager to perform the role of hatchet men in the political arena. Civil servants who betrayed the law and the public trust, who swore allegiance to those who violate the law and abuse their authority, have only themselves to blame. Power politics is the power of darkness. It corrupts a nation's institutions and ethics. It rips apart its civil society, and prevents it from healing. Why has the island's democracy been corrupted to this degree by a single family, to the point where it is difficult even to clean up the mess?

Abuse of power, favoritism, corruption, power games are all tools Chen Shui-bian is using to elude justice. Now that this parade float of corruption has come tumbling down, The Lady MacBeth perched atop the float is shouting, "I'm going to kill you." Doesn't the Chen crime family's mafia saga make one's heart thump and one's skin crawl?

2008.11.21 02:50 am


吳 淑珍接受特偵組訊問,對所有弊案一概否認知情,並將責任全推說身邊親信擅作主張,與她無關。對馬永成為她詐領國務機要費,她宣稱不知情;對余政憲洩漏評委 名單給廠商,她說自己沒指示;對於辜家四億佣金,她堅稱是「政治獻金」,還怒責蔡銘哲從中暗槓。吳淑珍的全盤抵賴,對照陳水扁被押時高呼「放了那些無辜被 押的人」,反映了扁家慣用的兩手策略:在公開場合呼喚正義,私下卻吃人不吐骨頭。

這種一推二賴的本事,大家並不陌生。當陳幸妤要她公公趙 玉柱「自殺算了」,當陳致中、黃睿靚夫婦始終咬緊海外洗錢是奉「母命」行事,用的即是同一招數。陳致中夫婦把責任全推給母親,吳淑珍把責任全推給家臣和親 信;搜刮的金山銀山歸自己,出事的責任卻歸執行任務的部屬,這真是吃人不吐骨頭的鱷魚哲學。吳淑珍的嫂子,也就是吳景茂的妻子陳俊英說:「事發之後,吳淑 珍只關心她的錢,卻完全不管吳家的死活!」

葉盛茂身為調查局長卻向阿扁洩漏洗錢情資,余政憲身為內政部長卻降格扮演洩漏工程評委名單的信 差,說明扁時代行政綱紀敗毀得一塌糊塗。即以馬永成堪稱「阿扁分身」,還比不上阿珍好友蔡美利姊弟在官邸政商間的親暱穿梭,可見親信政治是一桶不見底的餿 水。陳水扁不僅欺騙了人民、剝削了台灣,他也矇蔽了自己的政黨和同志。

陳水扁八年這頁醜陋的「親信政治」和「裙帶文化」,走到必須和跑腿 人切割的地步,也等於走到了自己的末路。放在政治的脈絡裡觀察,陳水扁今天的下場,與其說是他的理想沉淪,倒不如說是他極端自私自利的「工具主義」之圖窮 匕現。陳水扁將陳鎮慧、馬永成一干人用成貪汙的工具,然後又用成串證偽證的工具,再用成頂罪的工具;現在這些人的工具效應已經消耗殆盡,扁珍立即翻臉不認 人,反而把這些人當成主犯,而自己卻想脫身。扁珍的沒心沒肺,何能到此地步?

綠營果真至今還看不清陳水扁的自私和趨利本質嗎?試想:他八 年前當選總統,是靠著一批社會清流的力挺,但上任不久,「國政顧問團」的菁英即被棄如敝屣。他延攬唐飛組閣,不數月,即宣布「大石頭搬走了」。他任內六次 改組內閣,這些天王閣揆不也都是他一用即棄的工具嗎?包括他推動「入聯公投」、「正名去蔣」、「烽火外交」,追根究柢,也皆是為了掩飾其無能和貪瀆而發動 的政治操作。更有甚者,陳水扁假藉捐款把台獨大老吳澧培拖進洗錢案,用區區三千萬把李界木毀在龍潭弊案,綠營還要相信他是台獨志士嗎?

這 件元首貪瀆大案,主謀一家還逍遙在外,反而是各路親信身繫囹圄,這種倒錯景象,反映的是台灣民主政治禍殃未已的亂流。兔死狗烹的下場,足供那些甘為鷹犬的 政壇馬屁精引為殷鑑:身為公務員,不知向法律和體制效忠,卻選擇違背法律向濫權者效私忠,是咎由自取。更值得警惕的,則是權力政治的黑暗力量,不僅腐蝕國 家體制與行政倫理,更讓撕裂的公民社會無以癒合。為什麼台灣民主遭一人一家敗壞至此,現在卻連收拾殘局都還有困難?


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