China Times News Editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
January 15, 2016
Executive Summary: The people want healthy party competition. We can have blue and green. But we need not take sides and hate the enemy. We can have competition. But healthy competition need not turn into vicious struggle. Ruling and opposition party reconciliation does not mean forsaking opposition party oversight and criticism. Ruling and opposition party reconciliation means the ruling party tolerates criticism, while the opposition party refrains from bringing the government to a standstill. Only healthy party competition can ensure unity and progress.
Full Text Below:
Public enthusiasm for the presidential election is low. Nevertheless the countdown to election day has begun. The KMT and the DPP, as well as Eric Chu and Tsai Ing-wen, continue criticizing and smearing each other. The KMT is playing the crisis card. The DPP is denouncing the KMT as unjust and accusing it of vote buying. Eric Chu says Tsai Ing-wen "cannot hypnotize clear-headed people with empty rhetoric and ambiguous language”. He calls upon "the silent majority to come out and vote". Tsai Ing-wen in turn says "The Kuomintang never engages in soul-searching. It persists in living in a dream world, imagining that a silent majority will emerge at the last minute to support them". We in turn wonder, what happened to the "blue-green reconciliation" we were promised?
In fact, what the silent majority wants is simply for the ruling party to govern responsibly, to refrain from abusing its power, to refrain from shattering the peace, and to govern responsibly while in office. What the silent majority wants, is for the opposition party to provide oversight of the ruling party, to refrain from undermining democracy, to refrain from shredding the rule of law, and to refrain from opposing the ruling party out of sheer spite. What the silent majority wants is the two largest blue and green parties to compete under to the rule of law, to join forces to enhance the quality of governance, and to improve people's lives. What the silent majority wants is "reconciliation" not merely as a slogan, but as a fact.
Take so-called "ethnic group” reconciliation, for example. During three televised presidential debates, Tsai Ing-wen spoke in emotional tones. She said "First generation Mainlander migration is now part of Taiwan's past". She promised that "Provincial enmity will never surface on Taiwan again". She knows that provincial enmity has ripped Taiwan society apart. She admitted that the party she leads has not done enough to address this matter.
Tsai Ing-wen's willingness to reflect upon this matter deserves affirmation. She knows the DPP has incited “ethnic group” enmity, and is willing to acknowledge this out loud. But the willingness to confess, must be followed by a willingness to make amends.
In 2000, when the DPP first came to power, President Chen Shui-bian's mantra was “ethnic group reconciliation”. But every time an election rolled around, the DPP reverted to form, to "Hong Kong feet, taking the Hong Kong path" demagoguery. Chen's “ethnic group reconciliation” was revealed to be a removable mask, donned whenever the DPP required unity. The DPP would don the mask in ritual fashion. It would then sound the clarion call, incite mob sentiment among the party faithful, and remove the mask once the battle was won.
One might go further. During the DPP's eight year regime, it flagrantly incited “ethnic group” enmity. This provoked intense public antipathy. More recently, DPP incitement of “ethnic group” enmity has evolved. It has become covert and roundabout. Fewer and fewer politicians openly incite “ethnic group” enmity. Instead they stage-manage scenarios that give them license to incite “ethnic group” enmity. Over the past eight years, the DPP has colluded with Huang Kuo-chang and other Sunflower Student Movement forces. Together they have demonized anyone who advocates cross-Strait peace, anyone whose thinking is rooted in Chinese culture and history, anyone who struggles to increase Taiwan's soft power, specifically Taiwan businessmen on the Mainland. They accuse them of “pandering to China and selling out Taiwan”. They work overtime inciting anti-China hatred on Taiwan. What is this, if not a disguised form of “ethnic group” hate-mongering?
Tsai Ing-wen has belatedly confessed that she knew all along what the DPP was up to. If she genuinely wants people to believe she seeks “ethnic group reconciliation”, she must do more than merely say what she knows. She must do what she says.
The legislative elections also warrant attention. Under current circumstances, the new legislature is likely to consist of two large parties and two small parties, two blue parties and two green parties. The DPP and the KMT are the two large parties. The PFP and the New Power Party are the two small parties. If blue and green are defined by cross-Strait policy, then the DPP and the NPP are ideologically green, while the KMT and the PFP are ideologically blue. In terms of political demands the PFP and NPP are both radical. The once radical DPP is attempting to move toward the center, but its sincerity remains to be seen. If the KMT suffers a rout, it may be left bewildered. This will make it difficult to regain its strength.
This distribution of political forces raises concerns about party politics on Taiwan. Out of such concern, we appeal to the blue and green parties. If the DPP wins, Tsai Ing-wen's acceptance speech should include her pledge to tolerate dissent, and in particular, to respect the KMT. She must not play the "unity card" in order to demonize opposition party oversight and criticism. After all, checks and balances are an important part of democracy. If the KMT goes down in defeat, Eric Chu's concession speech should also be high minded. He should pledge that the KMT will not tear society apart, occupy government offices or encourage others to occupy government offices, or maliciously paralyze the nation by endless protests.
The people want healthy party competition. We can have blue and green. But we need not take sides and hate the enemy. We can have competition. But healthy competition need not turn into vicious struggle. Ruling and opposition party reconciliation does not mean forsaking opposition party oversight and criticism. Ruling and opposition party reconciliation means the ruling party tolerates criticism, while the opposition party refrains from bringing the government to a standstill. Only healthy party competition can ensure unity and progress.
朱立倫與蔡英文繼續加碼相互批評抹黑。國民黨猛打危機牌、 民進黨攻訐國民黨不公不義，候選人賄選買票，朱立倫批評蔡英文： 「用空話和模糊話是沒有辦法把清醒的人催眠的」，他呼喚「 沉默的力量站出來投票」。蔡英文則反批朱立倫：「 國民黨從來不願意反省，只是一直在幻想，會有一群沉默的大多數， 會在最後時刻跑出來支持他們。」說好的「藍綠和解」去哪裡了？
不霸道濫權、不破壞和平，交出讓人滿意的執政成績， 在野黨認真監督，不破壞民主、不踐踏法治，不為反對而反對。 要的是藍綠兩大黨在法制規範下競爭，共同提升政府治理能力， 改善民眾生活。也就是，不能只是把「和解」當成口號，而應該將「 和解」付諸實踐。
曾以感性的口吻說「 外省第一代顛沛流離的過往是台灣歷史記憶的一部分」，她會確保「 省籍矛盾永遠不在台灣再度發生」。 而她知道省籍衝突曾撕裂台灣社會， 並直言她領導的政黨在這議題上做得不夠好。
也是陳水扁總統最常掛在口中的話，但一到了選舉，就變成了「 香港腳走香港路」的操弄， 於是所謂的族群融合變成一種可戴可卸的面具，要訴求團結時， 就行禮如儀地戴上面具，要激起支持者情緒與對抗意識時， 則拿下面具。
造成人民強大的不滿，事實上近年來， 族群的操弄變得更隱晦與迂迴， 現在愈來愈少政治人物會直接地操弄族群，而是透過情境加工方式， 把操弄族群的惡意藏於其中。過去8年來， 民進黨結合如黃國昌等太陽花的力量，把主張兩岸和平、 有中國文化思維與史觀的人、 把在大陸認真打拚擴張台灣軟實力的台商通通打成親中賣台， 努力煽動台灣內部反中與仇中情緒，這又何嘗不是一種族群的操弄？
以目前的態勢看來，立法院很可能會出現二大二小、 二藍二綠的政黨格局。民進黨與國民黨為二大， 親民黨與時代力量為二小。若限縮以兩岸政策區分藍綠的話， 民進黨與時代力量走向綠色的意識型態譜系， 而國民黨與親民黨則屬於藍色的意識型態譜系。在政治訴求上， 時代力量與親民黨都有激進化的傾向， 民進黨則從過去的激烈反中試圖向中間修正， 但誠意與行動力幾分還待觀察，國民黨如選舉大敗， 則可能處在暈眩狀態，一時難以回復元氣。
不免讓人對台灣接下來的政黨政治品質感到憂心，出於這樣的憂心， 我們對藍綠政黨衷心呼籲，如果民進黨勝，在蔡英文的勝選聲明中， 當承諾她會包容異見，特別是要尊重國民黨，不會以所謂的「 團結牌」去扭曲在野黨的合理監督與批評，因為「制衡」 仍是民主政治的重要元素。如果國民黨敗， 朱立倫的敗選聲明也應拉高格局，宣示國民黨不會走撕裂社會情緒、 霸占議事殿堂、鼓動占領官署、惡意癱瘓國家的無限抗爭手段。