Thursday, March 12, 2015

KMTitanic III: But this ship can't sink!

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This is the life...
Smith: The pumps... if we opened the doors...
Andrews: [interrupting] The pumps buy you time, but minutes only. From this moment, no matter what we do, Titanic will founder.
Ismay: [incredulously] But this ship can't sink!
Andrews: She's made of iron, sir! I assure you, she can... and she will. It is a mathematical certainty.
Eric Chu's KMT is still the KMT. The news says it all: Tenth KMT-CCP forum to be held in May or June. The KMT has but one card left to play, and that's the "only we can handle China" card. Unfortunately they are looking like the same old KMT more and more, with the press now discussing a Xi-Chu meetup at the Forum -- which is being treated as a separate issue. The Forum, held in June, will be only six months away from the election, a timely reminder of who the KMT's allies are. This connection might be nice in some quarters, and polls might even show majority approval, but I suspect voters are going to be very tired of it, and will punish the KMT. If Xi and Chu meet, it will cost the KMT votes.

In any case, the Eric Chu KMT is feeling a lot like the Ma Ying-jeou KMT, same people, same issues, same trends...

Lots of light moments this week. A well-known talk show host, Vivian Tsai (蔡玉真) made headlines today by announcing that Ma would have to step down in 2015, which would make Wu Den-yih President. It's hard to see that happening, but the really droll part is that Wu Den-yih and his wife believe they are fated to be president and first lady. Apparently a few years back, a fortune teller told Wu that he had a presidential fate. My wife observed that if he becomes president, that fortune teller is going to get rich. eTaiwan news says:
The Special Investigation Division summoned political commentators Tsai Yu-chen and Wang Chieh-min to testify Wednesday in its investigation of charges that President Ma Ying-jeou accepted illegal contributions from business figures in the 2008 election campaign. Afterwards Tsai took to Facebook to write that she believes Ma will step down as president sometime this year, to be succeeded by current Vice President Wu Den-yih.

Tsai revealed that she had been questioned in relation to reports of political contributions from the Ting Hsin Group. She said that prosecutors had provided a list of entrepreneurs and asked what she knew regarding the case, but added that she was not at liberty to disuss any details of the investigation. She said she could only disclose that she believes that before the end of this year President Ma will step down from office. "But don’t worry,” she said, “Wu Den-yih is prepared to take over and this will be a transition period only."
Wu dismissed the claims as "ridiculous". The really great thing is that suddenly the Chen Shui-bian accusations of the other day were blown away by this new kerfuffle and disappeared into the media ether...

Speaking of the presidency, reports have it that PFP leader James Soong, once a KMT stalwart who nearly won the Presidency in 2000 after leaving the KMT and running as an independent, is considering a run. This will help the PFP legislative candidates, though, if the last time he did this is any indication, he won't have much effect on the Presidential election. But it will still be nice to see...

Meanwhile, DPP Chair and probable presidential candidate Tsai Ying-wen is making DPP hay out of the nuclear issue. She called on DPP members to take part in demonstrations against nuke power across the nation on Saturday. Nukes are unpopular and DPP ownership of this issue will hurt the KMT come election time.
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6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'll be interested to see if Xi tells Eric Chu the same things he told the New Party about 1-country-2-systems. Surely, surely he's smarter than that but one can dream..

Carlos said...

"The KMT has but one card left to play, and that's the "only we can handle China" card."

I suspect it will work. Sure, the local elections swung greenward, but they were just local elections. In national elections the stakes are greater, and the narrative that Taiwan needs to keep China mollified is still pretty strong. I'm a natural pessimist, though.

On a separate note, I'd rather live near a nuclear power plant than a coal power plant. It's one of my biggest disagreements with the DPP platform, and apparently with the public. In my dream world they both get replaced with renewables, but coal first.

Anonymous said...

"I suspect it will work. Sure, the local elections swung greenward, but they were just local elections. In national elections the stakes are greater, and the narrative that Taiwan needs to keep China mollified is still pretty strong. I'm a natural pessimist, though."

I doubt it. Mainstream attitudes on China have shifted dramatically since 2008-2012. The KMT and CCP are hoping that playing the '92 consensus card will work again, but it will probably backfire in today's strongly anti-China and anti-unification climate.

Mike Fagan said...

"Four different editorial staffs decided this was news."

News / women's gossip and other trivial shite, what's the difference these days?

Recall that back in 2011 the Taipei Times urged readers to regard a DPP electoral gimmick (the piggy banks thing) as Taiwan's equivalent of the Jasmine Revolution that was happening in North Africa at the time.

Anonymous said...

http://sun.yatsen.gov.tw/learn/yatsen_taiwan/index_sun_tw_a02.htm


The Idol piece reported that the Mr. Sun had never been to Taiwan is a lazy work. Typical American news report.

Brian Castle said...

I was surprised to find Cole's article featured on Digg.com, but there it was.