Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Politics Round Up

So much to catch up on. Apparently while I was off enjoying myself in the wilds of Pingtung political actors had the temerity to continue with politics. This must stop!

Good news for the DPP as Ma's poll numbers, which peaked briefly in Jan, are appearing to return to their more natural level of 32.9%, as the latest Global Views poll indicates. Dissatisfaction with Ma is now at 56%. This is the third straight month of slumping numbers for the President, so perhaps we've established a trend. Similarly, the numbers from the TVBS poll from the first week in April were 30% satisfied and 50% dissatisfied. The mess with the appointment of the judge appears to have hurt Ma, whose ridiculous explanations were not believed. In that same poll TVBS also asked about the Kuokuang Petrochemical complex, confirming my anecdotal experience: just 22% supported it, while 48% oppose it.

Two other things a friend of mine noted in an email he passed around: Party identification for both Green and Blue camps is rising, with Blue in the lead. Additionally, income inequality continues to worsen. The rising tide is floating only the biggest boats; everyone else continues to slowly drown. The CIER rolled back their GDP growth forecast from 4.55% to 4.29% because of the bad news from Japan and other factors. Stagnant incomes could be a major weapon for the DPP to bash the KMT with in 2012.

The big news today is that the Central Election Commission has approved holding the Presidential and Legislative Elections on the same day. There have been some complaints that this will disenfranchise thousands of younger voters since the Presidential election will be held earlier. It is hard to say how this will influence the election results, with reasonable arguments going in several different directions. Much of its effect will depend on the how the two Party machines handle mobilization issues.

Finally, Shih Ming-teh's attack on Tsai Ing-wen is par for the course for Shih. Because he vanished into obscurity, people have forgotten that he is the male mirror of Annette Lu (who, with typical Annette Lu vaporheadedness, thought Shih was onto something when he asked Tsai to publicly reveal her true sexuality). Cast your mind back to when Shih was "leading" the faux Red Ant protests against Chen Shui-bian. Yeah. Remember when Shih claimed the DPP was going to assassinate him with bombs? Remember these days?:
In recent days Shih Ming-te has lashed out at the DPP, saying it was worse than the CCP. This morning the pro-Green Liberty Times reported that he had said that the Chen Shui-bian government has less legitimacy than the Chiang Kai-Shek regime had. He is also involved in a spat with several of his former comrades over whether he had visited prostitutes, and has criticized Reverend Kao, who sheltered him during the days when he was on the run from the government after it smashed the 1979 Human Rights Day protest. The pro-Blue UDN reported today that the pro-Blue China Times had warned Shih that it would better if he kept his mouth shut. Nice thought, that.
There's nothing unusual in this behavior.
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