Saturday, February 19, 2011

Discuss: What should the DPP do to win in 2012??

A-gu writes on DPP heavyweight Su Tseng-chang's proposal for a "Taiwan Consensus" to counter the KMT's fictional "1992 Consensus" that underlies so much of its pro-China propaganda thrust:
I fully expect Su Chen-chang's phrase of "Taiwan Consensus" will end up defining the DPP position vis-a-vis the KMT come 2012, though I imagine we can expect some internal wrangling between heavy weights for a share of the credit.

Su's statement is summarized in this article:
蘇貞昌認為,台灣歷經四次總統直選,是主權獨立的國家,不隸屬於中華人民共和國,依據憲法,目前名稱是中華民國,改變現狀要全民同意,已是全體國人最大的共識

Su Chen-chang believes that Taiwan has had four direct presidential elections; that it is a sovereign and independent country, not part of the People's Republic of China; that according to the constitution, the national name is currently the Republic of China; that changing the status quo [thus defined] must be agreed to by the people as a whole; and that these points already form the broadest consensus [of cross-strait relations] in the country.
That last sentence is, I think the most important here. The public is already clear that it does not want to change its current state of independence from China into an annexation to China. That is why Ma, front man for the KMT message, keeps saying in various quiet ways that Taiwan is already part of China and always has been, to finesse the problem of this public consensus. But Su is pointing to where the DPP needs to be in 2012.

Last night we were having one of those alcohol-fueled discussions about what the DPP needs to do to take the 2012 election --a arguably the 2011 legislative election is even more important, but a 2/3 KMT majority is a foregone conclusion with the current districting arrangements (see here). One side took the position that the DPP needs a grand strategy/message to win the election, while the other side argued that the DPP's problem was structural: its local structure remains far behind the KMT in its ability to mobilize votes and to carry its message to local voters. What should the DPP do to win in the legislative and presidential elections in the next two years?
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Daily Links:
  • Australian Man cycles Taiwan to raise money for charity.
  • Latest version of Taiwan What's Up out.
  • Cyclists who visit east coast to get certificates for participation in two tours.
  • Taiwan growth offset by tightening in China
  • DPP accuses Ma of echoing One China policy of Beijing in WaPo intervew. Yes, of course, that's what he has been doing all along....
  • Taipei Times warns on dangerous trends ahead:
    "On Thursday, the Taiwan External Trade Development Council announced that a Chinese purchasing mission had placed US$1.45 billion in orders with Taiwanese firms — mostly in the high-tech sector. Acer and Asustek Computer, both of which have major manufacturing sites in China, won big orders. Left unsaid was that essentially these major Chinese purchases are for products that will be manufactured in China by Chinese workers."
    Note how that is missing from the AFP article on this buying spree.
  • WAY COOL: Link to Kirill Yeskov's retelling of The Lord of the Rings with Gandalf cast as power mad magician out to snuff out rational sci-tech empire of Mordor.
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18 comments:

blobOfNeurons said...

Why can't the DPP have both a grand message and a good local structure? The two are complimentary.

Richard said...

Win the hearts of the young generation. I don't know if there's any voter statistics in Taiwan, but I'd very much be interested in seeing the turnout for Taiwanese in that 18-25 range, or all the way to just under 30.

Free Taiwan said...

蘇貞昌認為,台灣歷經四次總統直選,是主權獨立的國家,不隸屬於中華人民共和國,依據憲法,目前名稱是中華民國,改變現狀要全民同意,已是全體國人最大的共識。

Su Chen-chang believes that Taiwan has had four direct presidential elections; that it is a sovereign and independent country, not part of the People's Republic of China; that according to the constitution, the national name is currently the Republic of China; that changing the status quo [thus defined] must be agreed to by the people as a whole; and that these points already form the broadest consensus [of cross-strait relations] in the country.


That's essentially exactly the same as the KMT's position. If the DPP want to win, they need to show that they can offer something different not just more of the same, otherwise there's no incentive for anyone to vote differently than they did in 2008.

Raj said...

The KMT got 53.5% of the vote in the legislative elections - the DPP 38.2%. If the situation was reversed I severely doubt the KMT would have a large majority.

The DPP was happy to go for this vote system because it thought it was the best way to get a majority. If it wanted "fair votes" it could have gone for PR. I don't buy the "DPP will never get 50% of the vote in legislative elections" mantra. But it probably can get a majority if it gets a majority of votes like the KMT did last time.

The DPP needs a national message AND better local structure. You cannot have just one, and I guess the reason they've always had problems with the legislative is that they can't do both, or neglect one message. Each candidate needs a message that makes him/her seem different from his opponent. He/she also needs a national message that can be used.

Michael Turton said...

Raj it ain't a mantra, it's numbers. Do them yourself. I found the grassroots progress in the last election most encouraging and in line with the trend of the last few elections....

....that said, the legislative elections are different. Patronage networks and local structure and policy are everything. National message is not important.

Michael

Raj said...

Michael, but once you have PR voting patterns change. There is no "local candidate" to get behind. People vote on national issues, even if they still keep in mind local grievances.

The DPP will have to get on as best they can with the current system, but they plumped for a voting system that can lead to wildly disproportionate results, so they can't complain.

Anonymous said...

They traded SNTV for MMM. Doesn't mean they like MMM better than PR, does it? PR was never an option.

Claudia Jean said...

To be honest, what Su said was nothing new. He said that this was based on the DPP's 1999 Resolution on Taiwan's Future. Then it means this has always been the DPP position since 1999. The problem is not the lack of consensus about 'Taiwan' given that 75% of Taiwanese support 'Taiwan'. The problem is that the DPP could never go beyond 50%, get any of those in the other 25% to support them and get a big enough majority to instigate some real change. They need some concrete strategy rather than a reiteration of an existing principle.

Dixteel said...

Just do both, and make very clear distinction between DPP and KMT. I noticed that KMT kept tyring to give the impression that DPP is doing and saying the same thing. If people Just do both, and make very clear distinction between DPP and KMT. I noticed that KMT kept tyring to give the impression that DPP is doing and saying the same thing. If people perceive that KMT and DPP are similar, KMT will win because it has more resource.that KMT and DPP are similar, KMT will win because it has more resource.

Also, during the election, KMT will completely change its political stance to mimic DPP's message. For example, KMT will say, "we love Taiwan as well, but DPP only cares about politics, and we cares about economics." Things like that. Therefore, DPP's message has to be clear and not easy to mimic by KMT. In other words, make it so that when KMT tries to mimic, people will immidiately know KMT is bullshitting.

Also, right now KMT's core message in their compaign that China is becoming an economic super power and Taiwan has to kiss its ass to survive. DPP NEEDS A STRONG DIRECT/INDIRECT COUNTER TO THIS ARGUEMENT.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if prominent strategies will lead to a win. KMT has deep pockets and can outspend the DPP in flashy advertising and promotion. DPP does better at the grassroots level, but that doesn't reach everyone. It's not 'executive' enough.

Also feel that behind the screen there is a reticence to aggressively challenege KMT b/c of personal threats to life and limb.

If they could be courageous and fight a noble campaign, the DPP would need to loudly trumpet such issues as the extreme weakness of national security and how it would improve that, the organized crime connections of the KMT and how it would fight them, a plan for improving Taiwan's status in other countries, as well as unambiguous strategy for dealing with China.

I think DPP has previously done a good job to promote a localized pro-people message. I strongly felt this during the last presidential campaign--DPP was the champion of the "Light" against the "Darkness" of KMT.

But DPP needs to be seen as a clean(er) option, be pro-business with a stronger emphasis on protecting jobs and building the economy at home and abroad, be pro-Taiwan (inclusively, incl the "Chinese"), and emphasize Taiwan's uniqueness as a polyglot/poly-cultural nation, and as a place that harmonizes "Chinese culture" with "Western culture".

Anonymous said...

The DPP must present a grand plan on how to make traffic safer for everyone including our avid bicycle guru Michael.

That will amount to one vote from me and many others who are sick of this blatant disregard and indifference to traffic safety.

Richa

Valsing Jaroma said...

Researches on the status of Taiwan and on the status of the ROC on Taiwan lead us to conclude that ROC elections are of no concern to the Taiwanese populace.

Holy shit!! All alarm bells a-ringing?

Sit back. Breathe. breathe.

Ask yourself the following:

Do the Indian inhabitants of Dharmsala, Himachal Pradesh have a say in the internal affairs of the exiled Tibetan government ensconced in Upper Dharmsala also known as McLeod Ganj?

Any Taiwanese worth his/her salt should desist from participating in ROC elections.

If some brainwashed Taiwanese made ROC their choice of an identity, they should be prepared for repatriation to the mythical motherland, right across the strait.

Taiwanese, leave ROC alone.

Safeguard
Formosa
Promote
T.R.A.

Valsing Jaroma said...

Wait... I was not done yet with the fakery the ROC is.

Because, let us be honest, all of you out there implicitely perceive all ROC paraphernalia, including its passport, visas, currency, etc... all looks and is, per se, fake.

Merely desisting from participation in its elections is not going to fit the bill.

Those wisels will represent your failure to cast your ballot in their elections as endorsement.

You need drawing a clear line in the sand.

I'll be watching for ROC passports-fed bonfires ablaze on Ketagalan and in front of A.I.T..

Safeguard
Formosa,
Promote
T.R.A.

blobOfNeurons said...

Solve the low fertility rate. That would be a good core message. Point out that a shrinking population will cause Taiwan to systematically shut down from the bottom up. What happens to a plant with root rot? That's what will happen to Taiwan.

But they have to take it seriously. This is a long term project involving the job market, the education system, the environment, and the housing market. A few stupid slogans won't do anything. This is about creating a better Taiwan where people will want to have kids on their own.

Anonymous said...

Agree on what the problems are, illustrate with examples, propose a solution.

For example, if there is a problem with the judiciary system, highlight the problems and what you will do about it. Problems with the political or some other sector, same thing.

Why not have nationwide campaigns to keep Taiwan clean or improve peoples driving, we had such ads running in the UK for years, dont dazzle with high beams, keep your distance. Things aimed at everyone.

Try to change peoples perception, if some groups think the DPP ran around like a bunch of ass hats pulling down statues and making name changes without proper discussion or legislation. Stress that not every issue will be won, but it will be done through a democratic process, if opposition is strong enough to repel what is right. The DPP will know the issue has been brought to the public and have faith the public will allow for a government that would enact laws which are fair at a later time.

In short, maturity, and long term vision.

Mick

Anonymous said...

Madam Valsing Jaroma,

OK, if the Taiwanese people will heed your voice and don't vote then
your ROC in-exile, USMG-SFPT doctrine will be law.

If on the other hand they will vote in droves then it either means they have faith in the ROC or maybe you really need some professional help.


Richa

阿牛 said...

Seems to me there are both structural problems and message problems. Fixing the message can help for the presidential election, but it will take real structural changes to stand a chance at gaining strongly in the legislature.

Waltzing Jaloma said...

Richa,

OK, you have me stumped as you write, “…if on the other hand they will vote in droves then it either means they have faith in the ROC or maybe I really need some professional help.”

On the other hand, if the Taiwanese people will not vote, will my ROC in-exile, USMG-SFPT doctrine be law?

I would not put it exactly that way. For, although the USMG-SFPT doctrine has been the law for already sixty years, hoodwinked by the ROC and by their perception of a US selling them cheap, the Taiwanese have been mislead into resenting the notion of coming under direct USMG control.

Kept unaware of there status and of the inherent rights flowing from it, they are caught in a collective case of Stockholm syndrome and wind up embracing that ROC it would be in the best of their interest to shuck off legally and peacefully.

Whichever party wins the elections, the ROC wins. And, ultimately, China wins another hand. If you consider that, in a Taiwan that won’t be allowed independence at this time, the debate over independence vs. unification is moot, does it make sense to better entrench China’s interests?

On the other hand, a collective awareness of that international legal status would better serve the interests of Taiwan. To that end, let us hear from an unspoiled Taiwanese voice. Read on:

‘Many Taiwanese consider themselves citizens of the ROC, but no one else in the world agrees with the existence of the ROC. That’s the reason the Philippine government sent the Taiwanese suspects to the PRC.
Currently, the US refers to “Taiwan” as the “Taiwan authority,” not as a country.
The people of Taiwan need to unite, identify with Taiwan, draw a line with the ROC and declare to the world their desire to establish an independent state according to international law.
This is the only way to preserve our dignity and maintain our international status.
This is the only way Taiwan will ever have the authority to negotiate with other countries’ governments, and finally, dare to hope that the US under international law and the Taiwan Relations Act will lead the way for Taiwan to become a true nation.

Excerpt of Yang-Liu Hsiu-Hwa’s “Wake up call” letter, Taipei Times, Wed, Feb 16, 2011 – Editorials section
http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/editorials/
archives/2011/02/16/2003495991



Please note that nowhere does Ms. Yang refer to the “sovereignty” of Taiwan. Her only concern at this juncture is to “maintain our international status.”

Now, to “unite, identify with Taiwan, draw a line with the ROC and declare to the world their desire to establish an independent state according to international law, so that the US under international law and the Taiwan Relations Act will lead the way for Taiwan to become a true nation,” how should the (formerly Japanese and their descendants) Taiwanese proceed to help their remote occupier straightening things ?