Monday, September 25, 2017

Gou positioning himself for 2020?

The magnificent northern cross. Miss that ride.

My man Donovan published at the News Lens on Taiwan's political future... observing of the KMT:
On the national level, the party currently has no candidates that are popular enough to run a serious challenge to the presidency. There is talk of running an outsider, such as the maverick owner of Hon Hai Precision Industry (known overseas as Foxconn) Terry Gou (郭台銘), a la Donald Trump. His strong ties to China are a big drawback. The other is his overt authoritarian thinking, which while potentially appealing overseas won’t work in Taiwan. Taiwanese, only recently having defeated authoritarianism after a long struggle, are fiercely proud of their democratic accomplishments.
Gou was in the news today in a strange juxtaposition... the alleged oldest Mazu temple's statue of the Mazu cult made its way to Taiwan this week, and who should be involved but Terry Gou hisownself:
Meizhou Mazu’s visit to Taiwan was mainly arranged by Foxconn Founder and Chairman Terry Gou (郭台銘), who greeted the Mazu statue from the Chinese temple and participated in carrying the palanquin all the way to a nearby port for the trip to Taiwan.
Why Mazu? The Mazu cult is a major nexus of cross-strait annexationist activity. I've discussed this before in more detail here. Officials of the island's major Mazu temple, the Jenn Lan temple in Dajia, are knee-deep in cross-strait annexation politics, underworld activities, and local Taiwan politics. In 2014, when China's Taiwan Affairs Office head visited Taiwan, he visited another major Mazu temple in Taiwan, the Tien Hou Gong in Lukang. In 2011 a Mazu statue carved of emerald was donated by a Chinese sculptor to the big temple in Dajia, and was met at the dock by KMT mayor Jason Hu of Taichung, and the Jenn Lan Temple President Yen Ching-piao, widely reputed to be one of the biggest gangsters in Taiwan. Even BBC, generally clueless and pro-China, has managed to report that China is using the cult in its drive to annex Taiwan. Recall that Jason Hu of Taichung also wanted to build a massive Mazu statue overlooking Taichung harbor to draw Chinese tourist group money to Taichung.

Aware of this connection to China's drive to annex Taiwan, I have heard that many Taiwan temples have carried out ceremonies in China to quietly divorce themselves from their parent temples.

Gou's move to bring over the statue appears to be an attempt to align himself with this movement and to please Beijing. It is hard to see why he would spend the time and money to do this, unless he was positioning himself for an election run with the KMT. If the young have the same influence on the election that they did in 2016, he won't have much of a chance. Moreover, Donald Trump has caused many to sour on the idea of businessman presidents...
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阿牛 said...

I mean, just look at the guy's vest, it was a politician's vest. Bam.

Anonymous said...

Trump-like candidates will probably be hugely unpopular in 2020; not a chance Guo can win.

The DPP's greatest vulnerability may be the power-blackout issue. A few more blackouts, more harm done to the high-tech industry, and the KMT will be charging in with its stance as the more power-friendly party, the party who can really get the electrical power going again (as the pro-nuke party, they'd have more credibility on this issue than the Greens). Couple that with DPP depressed turnout due to frustration with Tsai's centrist compromising (Lai:Tsai is like Bernie:Hillary) and the DPP could be in serious danger in 2020.

DPP really needs to rev up the electrical power supply on Taiwan. This isn't something to be taken lightly.