United Daily News Editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
January 5, 2016
Executive Summary: US pork imports and cross-Strait agreements are merely preludes. Once Tsai Ing-wen is crowned, she will surely perform many more Szechuan opera style flip-flops and about faces. A bill passed by a KMT majority in the legislature was smeared as a "black box operation" by the DPP. But when the green camp acquires a legislative majority and can do what it wants, that will be prettified as "assuming total responsibility". Ko Chien-min was a corrupt influence peddler par excellence. But once he is reelected, he will in all probability, as the green camp's most senior legislator, be lionized as the "leader of legislative reform".
Full Text Below:
During the two presidential debates, Tsai Ing-wen surreptitiously changed her policy positions. She has clearly made two policy changes. One. She now proposes to allow in US pork containing clenbuterol, providing they meet Japanese and Korean standards. Two. She now wants the Cross-Strait Agreement Oversight Regulations bill be given top priority during the coming session of the legislature. That means that soon after the election, Tsai Ing-wen may permit US pork imports containing clenbuterol, and Huang Kuo-chang may back passage of the STA.
For politicians to change their policy whenever they change roles is commonplace. As long as this sort of pragmatism serves the greater good, it is tolerable. But Tsai Ing-wen's ability to brazenly flip-flop, without batting an eyelash, is without peer. She has demonstrated the DPP's total lack of consistent principles. She has confirmed the truth of the addage, "Politics is the art of deceit". She has no qualms whatsoever about playing the public on Taiwan for fools.
Lest we forget, in mid-June 2012, the DPP demanded a zero tolerance policy for clenbuterol laced US beef imports. It forcibly occupied the legislature for five days and four nights, to prevent ruling party legislators from approving their importation. Earlier that year, pig farmers traveled north to Taipei to fling pig dung at the Ma government in protest. DPP legislators joined their ranks and castigated the KMT for "selling out the health of the nation", and for "destroying Taiwan's pork industry". They demagogued the US beef and US pork imports issue for all they were worth. Now however, Tsai Ing-wen is seizing the opportunity to flip-flop. Have the DPP's past lamentations about the "health of the nation" and the "pork farmers' livelihood" been forgotten?
Objectively speaking, any public policy must weigh the pros and cons of the different parties. It must consider the larger interests of society and individuals, and arrive at a balanced solution. The solution may not please everyone. But it must be the solution most beneficial to society as a whole. It must do individuals the least harm. It must provide compensation or subsidies to victims. Only that is sufficient. The Ma government advocated permitting US beef imports according to international standards. It advocated delinking beef and pork. Its approach was correct. Unfortunately, the DPP was out for blood, and incited mobs to obstruct the process.
Tsai Ing-wen's about face on US pork imports is inconsistent and impossible to justify. Tsai Ing-wen now proposes to permit US pork imports, providing they meet Japanese and South Korean standards. Is this a rational and pragmatic approach? Is it is, then why did the DPP react as it did when the KMT advocated international standards for US beef imports? Why did the DPP adopt a scorched earth policy? Why did the DPP accuse the Ma government of ignoring people's lives and health? Conversely, if the DPP's opposition and protests were justified, how can Tsai Ing-wen explain the DPP's double standards, and eat her words?
The STA and Cross-Strait Agreement Oversight Regulations were stalled in the Legislative Yuan for nearly two years. The main reason was DPP accusations of "black box operations". Students staged protests, occupied the legislature, and took advantage of the halo effect to continue their opposition. Were these bills so disastrous the DPP could not allow the ruling Kuomintang to pass them? If so, why has Tsai Ing-wen announced that they will be given top priority following the general election? Her deeds and words are diametrically opposed and totally inconsistent. What can one say but, “Will the real Tsai Ing-wen please step forward?”
Surely people have not forgotten Huang Kuo-chang, the “God of War” who led anti-STA protests during the Sunflower Student Movement? He is now running for a legislative seat, as a "Force of the Time" with Tsai Ing-wen's full support. On the streets, Huang Kuo-chang is virulently anti-China, anti-STA. At home, his businessman father in law is a major investor in the Mainland. His family has “gone west”. These are characterized as legitimate investments. But when others invest on the Mainland, they are excoriated for “selling out Taiwan”. What sort of logic is this?
Would be “God of War” Huang Kuo-chang opposed the STA. He has now thrown his hat in the ring, and organized a “rival” political party, one that is colluding with the DPP. Clearly the Sunflower Student Movement two years ago, was nothing more than cover for the Green Camp. They have even formed a "Capital Forward Alliance". Their next step is to play a role in the legislature. Huang Kuo-chang led Sunflower Student Movement opposition to the STA. Once he enters the legislature, it is easy to see him responding to calls by Tsai Ing-wen for the passage of the STA and Cross-Strait Agreement Oversight Regulations, and changing his position. We will have to wait and see.
US pork imports and cross-Strait agreements are merely preludes. Once Tsai Ing-wen is crowned, she will surely perform many more Szechuan opera style flip-flops and about faces. A bill passed by a KMT majority in the legislature was smeared as a "black box operation" by the DPP. But when the green camp acquires a legislative majority and can do what it wants, that will be prettified as "assuming total responsibility". Ko Chien-min was a corrupt influence peddler par excellence. But once he is reelected, he will in all probability, as the green camp's most senior legislator, be lionized as the "leader of legislative reform".
目前清晰的轉變有二：一是她主張比照日韓的標準， 處理瘦肉精美豬進口問題；二是主張《兩岸協議監督條例》 列為立法院下會期的優先法案，儘速處理。以這樣的前奏， 大選過後，民眾或許很快就能看到蔡英文放行美國瘦肉精豬肉， 也有可能看到黃國昌支持兩岸服貿協議過關。
但只要是為了整體利益務實考量，有時亦無可厚非。 但像蔡英文這樣，還沒換位子就開始修正立場， 露出原形而臉不紅氣不喘，則是少見的事。 這除說明民進黨缺乏一貫原則，也顯示它供奉「政治是高明騙術」 的信條，不憚於將台灣民眾玩弄於股掌之上。
民進黨堅持進口美牛瘦肉精必須「零檢出」， 並為此霸占立法院議場主席台達五天四夜之久， 以阻止執政黨立委通過該案。同一年稍早， 豬農北上向馬政府丟豬糞抗議時，民進黨立委在隊伍中示威叫陣， 痛罵國民黨「出賣國民健康」、「摧毀台灣養豬產業」， 把美牛美豬議題上綱到民粹最高點。如今， 蔡英文趁著大好形勢要輕輕轉身，但民進黨當時喊得震天價響的「 國民健康」、「豬農生計」，難道全拋諸腦後了？
考量整體和個體的利益，然後得出一個相對平衡的方案。 最後的方案，也許不是人人滿意，但必須是對整體社會最為有益， 對個別個體傷害最小，甚至設法向受害者提供賠償或補貼， 以求圓滿。以這樣的標準檢驗， 先前馬政府主張依國際標準開放美牛，以及堅持「牛豬分離」 的原則，方向其實是正確的。遺憾的是，民進黨卻喊打喊殺， 發動群眾杯葛。
就顯得前後矛盾且難以自圓其說了。 今天蔡英文主張比照日韓標準開放美豬，如果是理性及務實的作法， 那麼當初國民黨主張採國際標準開放美牛，民進黨為何焦土抗爭， 指控馬政府罔顧人民生命安全？反過來說， 如果當初民進黨的杯葛抗爭有理， 那麼今天蔡英文又如何面對自己的雙重標準及自食其言？
草案在立法院擱淺將近兩年，主要原因就是民進黨以「黑箱」為由， 發動學生霸占國會抗爭，並利用其餘威持續杯葛。 如果這些法案是禍國殃民的東西，民進黨拒絕讓執政的國民黨通過， 而蔡英文卻說要列為大選後下會期的優先法案；作法如此南轅北轍， 立場如此前後不一，言行如此自相矛盾， 要教民眾相信哪一個蔡英文才是真的？
黃國昌，也在這次選舉中以「時代力量」主席的身分參選立委， 並獲得蔡英文全力支持。眾目所見，黃國昌在街頭是反中、 反服貿的先鋒；在家中，其岳父卻是在大陸有龐大投資事業的台商。 家人西進，就是正當投資；別人登陸，就是禍台賣台， 這是什麼邏輯？
兩年前那場被稱為「學生運動」的太陽花事件， 其實就是以學生名義為掩護的綠營側翼。在這次選舉， 他們連手組成了所謂「首都進步大聯盟」，其下一步， 就是要在立法院大顯身手。不難想像， 曾率領太陽花反服貿的黃國昌，一旦被送入國會， 也有可能一改立場響應蔡英文的號召， 通過兩岸協議監督條例和服貿協議。且讓我們拭目以待。
當蔡英文威風凜凜地上台後，她勢必還有更多變臉和轉身的演出， 像川劇一樣。大家不妨想像其中幾齣戲碼：例如， 國民黨立委以國會優勢通過的法案，卻被民進黨貼上「黑箱」 的罪名；而未來綠營若取得過半的國會而為所欲為，則自我美化為「 完全執政」。例如，在關說案中扮演關鍵角色的柯建銘，一旦當選， 將可能以綠營最資深立委的身分出任立法院長，帶領「國會改革」。