Outer and Inner Directed Taiwan Independence: The End of the Road
United Daily News editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
October 4, 2012
Summary: Frank Hsieh is visiting the Mainland. Strip away all his surface rhetoric. What is Frank Hsieh really trying to say? He is saying that the DPP must stop chasing after Taiwan independence. Ultimately there can be no Taiwan independence ideology that only opposes the KMT, but not the CCP. Any "inner directed" Taiwan independence will necessarily be a failed form of "outer directed" Taiwan independence.
Full Text below:
Frank Hsieh is visiting the Mainland. Strip away all his surface rhetoric. What is Frank Hsieh really trying to say? He is saying that the DPP must stop chasing after Taiwan independence.
This may not be DPP's official position. At least not yet. But it is Frank Hsieh's position. And it is the policy direction that the DPP has no choice but to take. Frank Hsieh says "Our cross-Strait policy must be based on the Constitution of the Republic of China. We must not violate the Constitution." He speaks of the "one China Constitution." The constitutional framework of the Republic of China is not a framework for Taiwan independence. Nor is the "one China Constitution." Take Frank Hsieh's guiding theme. Strip away the surface rhetoric. Clear away the political smokescreen. What is he saying, really? Put simply, he is saying the DPP must return to the Constitution of the Republic of China. He is saying that the DPP must stop chasing after Taiwan independence.
Frank Hsieh said "There are no grievances between the Democratic Progressive Party and the Chinese Communist Party. The DPP once promoted Taiwan independence. But it was merely opposing Kuomintang rule. This had nothing to do with the Chinese Communist Party."
This passage is the clearest and most explicit statement any DPP party prince has ever made regarding Taiwan independence. It is also grotesquely distorted and seriously imbalanced. In fact, Taiwan independence has long had two different theoretical frameworks. One was "outer directed." It was based upon opposition to the Chinese Communist Party and opposition to cross-Strait political and economic integration. Another was "inner directed." It was based upon the overthrow of the Kuomintang and the subversion of the Republic of China. These two modes of thinking reinforce each other. In order to oppose the Chinese Communist Party, "inner directed" Taiwan independence must subvert the Republic of China, in order to sever all connections with China. Conversely, in order to subvert the Republic of China, Taiwan independence must oppose the Chinese Communist Party, to sever all connections with China. Frank Hsieh has deconstructed these two mutually reinforcing forms of Taiwan independence rhetoric. He is asserting that "Taiwan independence merely opposes the KMT, not the CCP." This is a highly revealing and shocking distortion of the facts.
Frank Hsieh's spin control shows that the Taiwan independence movement's "outer directed" ideology has failed. The last two decades of chaos provoked by Taiwan independence proves this. Nor has Taiwan independence been an effective strategy for opposing the CCP. As a result, "outer directed" Taiwan independence ideology has steadily lost effectiveness. Now the DPP is left with only "inner directed" Taiwan independence ideology. All this can do is tear Taiwan apart. It can do nothing in the political struggle against the CCP.
This reveals the flaws in Frank Hsieh's rhetoric. Is it possible for Taiwan independence to oppose only the Kuomintang, but not the Chinese Communist Party? The answer is clearly no. This is the DPP's plight today, as it continues to advocate Taiwan independence. Frank Hsieh's rhetoric is tantamount to an admission that Taiwan independence ideology has reached the end of its rope.
Frank Hsieh's "bartending trip" should be applauded. Hsieh went with some reluctance. To date, any earnest [Mainland] China policy debate within the DPP is essentially taboo. No one dares to open this Pandora's Box. There is no consensus within the party at the moment. Nevertheless Frank Hsieh rushed off to Beijing. He hoped to work out a DPP "China policy" with the Chinese Communist Party. But isn't this putting the cart before the horse? Isn't this swimming upstream? Take Frank Hsieh's arguments. If the DPP refuses to accept his "constitutional consensus," how can he expect Beijing to accept his "different Constitutions, different interpretations" of one China? Expressed even more clearly, if Beijing accepts "different constitutions, different interpretations," can Frank Hsieh persuade Su Tseng-chang and the DPP to accept his "Constitutional consensus?"
Given its Taiwan independence path, the DPP faces a dilemma. Its "outer directed" Taiwan independence rhetoric has failed. But it refuses to forsake its "inner directed" Taiwan independence rhetoric. Frank Hsieh has now put his own spin on Taiwan independence. He has trotted out a peculiar brand of Taiwan independence, one that is able to oppose the Kuomintang, but not the Chinese Communist Party. Frank Hsieh went to Beijing to declare that he was "no longer chasing after Taiwan independence." But the Democratic Progressive Party on Taiwan has said nothing to this effect. It is reluctant to forsake the political benefits of "inner directed" Taiwan independence rhetoric. This is why some within the DPP are unwilling to forsake "inner directed" Taiwan independence ideology. This is why they opposed Frank Hsieh's visit to Beijing, which sought to engage in "outer directed" Taiwan independence as relief.
Frank Hsieh's visit to the Mainland has provoked a backlash among Taiwan independence elements. Frank Hsieh said "Criticisms are like ocean waves. Those standing on the crest of these waves cannot avoid them." Do Taiwan independence elements intend to oppose Frank Hsieh? If so, they must step forward and offer their fellow citizens an explanation. Can this sort of Taiwan independence, which only knows how to direct its attacks inward, but which is powerless to direct its attacks outward, still be considered "Taiwan independence""
Frank Hsieh wants to export his "one China Constitution" to Beijing, then promote them back home on Taiwan. He is doing things backwards. HIs argument is hard to justify. He cannot tell the Chinese Communist Party that the DPP has forsaken "outer directed" Taiwan independence. He cannot expect Beijing to tolerate the DPP's continued use of "inner directed" Taiwan independence rhetoric during election campaigns on Taiwan. In the final analysis, can the the ROC flag appear at DPP mass rallies? If not, how convincing can Frank Hsieh's "one China Constitution" be?
An editorial published by this paper on the 2nd noted that Frank Hsieh went to Beijing to mend fences between the DPP and the CCP. But he first needs to mend the ROC, which as been ripped apart by Taiwan independence demagoguery. Does Frank Hsieh believe that the "one China Constitution" is "outer directed" Taiwan independence that opposes the Chinese Communist Party? If so, he should demand that the DPP forsake "inner directed" Taiwan independence, hold high the banner of the Republic of China, and return to the "one China constitution."
Ultimately there can be no Taiwan independence ideology that only opposes the KMT, but not the CCP. Any "inner directed" Taiwan independence will necessarily be a failed form of "outer directed" Taiwan independence.
2012.10.04 01:53 am