United Daily News editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
September 17, 2012
Summary: Chen Shui-bian has been imprisoned. It is inevitable that he will experience physical and mental anguish. He should settle his mind. This will benefit his physical and mental health. It will also improve his public image. It might even change history's verdict. Some cannot wait to see Chen Shui-bian seriously ill, receive CPR, and attempt suicide. These crazed Green Camp physicians and Green Camp politicians want Chen Shui-bian to feign "Prince of Yan Syndrome." Are they caring for Chen Shui-bian? Or are they exploiting Chen Shui-bian? Do they really have the heart to carry on like this?
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Chen Shui-bian's cell has ants. He told visitors, "Ma Ying-jeou and Wen Jiabao sicced these on me." The visitor immediately concluded, "This is clearly a case of mental illness, Clearly he has a persecution complex!"
First it was "Chen Shui-bian has cancer." Then it was "Chen Shui-bian is going to need CPR within four years." Then it was "Chen Shui-bian has suicidal tendencies." Now it is "Chen Shui-bian is mentally ill." One new pretext after another has been trotted out to justify "medical parole."
This charade began just over a month ago. First supporters said Chen Shui-bian had prostate cancer. It turned out to be a blood blister. Then supporters said Chen Shui-bian "attempted suicide three times." They said he was on a "hunger strike" and drinking only rice soup. But Chen Shui-bian himself insisted, "I will not commit suicide." Supporters said Ah-Bian had a "physical and mental disorder." But Chen family members disputed this. Instead, they accused the Taipei Detention Center supervisor administering a mild sedative to Ah-Bian even though he was disease free. Apparently they felt claims that Ah-Bian was mentally ill constituted an affront to his dignity. But the rumors continued snowballing. Supporters within the Green Camp suggested that Chen Shui-bian smear his face with feces and pretend to be insane. That way "He will surely be judged insane" and "The Ministry of Justice will immediately approve medical parole." But Chen Shui-bian said "Feigning insanity takes a long time, and is easy to see through." He added, "Feigning insanity would result in penalties. It would undermine my chances for parole."
The above proves two things. One. Those attempting to win medical parole for Ah-Bian seem determined to depict him as having cancer, as being suicidal, or as insane. Two. Their rumors spread faster than the medical reports. The media immediately ran with them and painted lurid pictures. Ah-Bian was depicted at death's door. But every time these rumors turned out to be either falsehoods or exaggerations.
Recently his visitors have relentlessly floated rumors. They say "Ah-Bian is not as sharp as he used to be." They say "He stammers a lot." They say Ah-Bian often asks "Where was I?" Others claim that Ah-Bian said "Ma Ying-jeou and Wen Jiabao sicced the ants on me." Clearly Chen Shui-bian's current condition is more and more consistent with the requirements for medical parole. So is this a medical issue? Or is it a case of political intrigue?
Zhu Yuanzhang was the founder of the Ming dynasty. When he died he bequeathed his throne to his grandson Zhu Yunwen, aka Emperor Jianwen, aka Emperor Hui. Emperor Jianwen used a meeting between Qitai and Huang Zicheng to eliminate his rivals. The Prince of Yan Zhu Di feigned insanity to avoid being purged. The Ming Chronicles note that "The Prince of Yan kept a fire going even in midsummer, insisting that it was "so cold." The Prince of Yan feigned insanity. He would wander through the streets railing at no one in particular, take wine and food without asking, babble incoherently, or lie in the dirt all day. But eventually the Prince of Yan's pretense of insanity was exposed. This led to the "Jingnan Uprising." Unofficial records say the Prince of Yan feigned insanity by smearing his face with feces.
Emperor Jianwen sent agents to spy on the Prince of Yan. That is how he discovered that the Prince of Yan was feigning insanity. But modern medicine is more sophisticated. Visitors allege that "Chen Shui-bian babbles incoherently," that "he has a persecution complex," and that "he is a paranoid schizophrenic." But are such allegations enough? What is this, if not a tug of war between medical expertise and political intrigue?
Is Chen Shui-bian mentally ill? This can be determined by the prison health care system. But the integrity of the manipulators within the Green Camp medical community and Chen Shui-bian are in serious question. On December 15, 2006, when Wu Shu-cheng made her first court appearance during the Chen family corruption trial, she "fainted." When she left the courtroom, she was ostensibly "in a coma." Yet Wu Shu-chen's hands were wrapped firmly around her attendant's neck. This was a clear case of "King of Yan Syndrome." During the 644 days that followed the National Taiwan University Hospital cited various reasons why Wu Shu-chen could not appear in court. Seventeen times she requested and received medical leave. But as reports from the courtroom after September 2008 showed, Wu Shu-chen was perfectly fine, physically and mentally. This was a huge slap in the face for National Taiwan University Hospital. Seventeen times it refused to allow Wu to appear in court. Its diagnosis hamstrung the judicial process. If it was the result of professional error, then it shames National Taiwan University Hospital. If it was the result of political bias, then it shame National Taiwan University Hospital even more. These sorts of physicians have been repeatedly visiting Chen Shui-bian in his prison cell. How can the public trust such people?
By now the public should have reached a consensus on Chen Shui-bian's "medical condition." He must meet the objective requirements for medical parole. Political considerations must not negate Chen Shui-bian's right to medical parole. By the same token, if he fails to meet those objective requirements, political considerations must not lead to Chen Shui-bian's "medical parole." These Green Camp physicians must demonstrate professional integrity. Can they really claim that Chen Shui-bian has a disease that the prison medical facilities cannot treat?
Some have suggested that Chen Shui-bian resort to "smearing feces over his own face" and "babbling incoherently" to ensure "medical parole." If so, then that is "King of Yan Syndrome." It is something the prison health care system can treat. One may not be able to treat it. But that does not mean one cannot see through it. This ought to be the minimum standard for medicine on Taiwan.
The prison medical system should make every effort to safeguard Chen Shui-bian's health. Chen Shui-bian has been imprisoned. It is inevitable that he will experience physical and mental anguish. He should engage in self introspection and self-examination, He should settle his mind. This will benefit his physical and mental health. It will also improve his public image. It might even change history's verdict. Some cannot wait to see Chen Shui-bian seriously ill, receive CPR, and attempt suicide. These crazed Green Camp physicians and Green Camp politicians want Chen Shui-bian to feign "Prince of Yan Syndrome." Are they caring for Chen Shui-bian? Or are they exploiting Chen Shui-bian? Do they really have the heart to carry on like this?
2012.09.17 02:39 am