Sunday, September 29, 2013

Ma Confucian Confusion

Tea being picked on the 169 on the flanks of Alishan.

Every year President Ma does this (TT):
Ma, accompanied by Minister of the Interior Lee Hong-yuan (李鴻源), Secretary-General of the Executive Yuan Chen Wei-jen (陳威仁) and Minister of the Education Chiang Wei-ning (蔣偉寧), paid his respects to the Chinese philosopher by burning incense and watching a bayi (八佾) dance.

The dance, a ritual traditionally acted out to pay respect to emperors, was performed by 64 students.

The temple also opened the Lingxing Gate, its main entrance which is usually closed during the ceremony, and arranged for the president to enter the temple via the route traditionally taken by emperors.

Addressing the ceremony after the two-hour ritual, Ma cited the Analects to emphasize the importance of politicians taking a righteous path and said the wisdom in the Analects has been a reference when he was making cross-strait policies.

“The Analects discussed how feudal barons interacted with each other and how they handled politics. I’ve taken the wisdom of the Analects as a reference in my cross-strait policies,” he said.
Note how deeply ideological such an appearance is, and how inflated. By mentioning his cross-strait policies, he reinforces his own Chineseness, and locates his political action with Beijing in that context, as if to say we might disagree, but China endures. One must also ask whether it is appropriate for the president of a democratic society to receive the honors of an imperial authoritarian. I can't help feeling that these behaviors are the actions of a man who is deeply and ideologically rigid and further, totally out of touch with the domestic political situation.

There were protests in Taipei today asking Ma to step down. At one point the protesters broke through the police lines in front of the president's residence.... Ketty Chen posted a reminder on Facebook about what Ma had promised during his inaugural address in 2008:
Taiwan's democracy should not be marred by illegal eavesdropping, arbitrary justice, and political interference in the media or electoral institutions.
As I said then, just take that speech as a 180 degree reversed road map about what is actually going to happen.
Daily Links:
Don't miss the comments below! And check out my blog and its sidebars for events, links to previous posts and picture posts, and scores of links to other Taiwan blogs and forums!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

64 ppl bayi again? How the protest that it is inappropriate? As Confucius should get 36 ppl liuyi only. 64 is for emperor only.