Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Taiwan President election fever

Taiwan President election is on. The election for the 13th-term President and Vice-President of the Republic of China (第十三任中華民國總統副總統選舉) will be held in the Free Area of the Republic of China (ROC) on January 14, 2012. The election will be held together with legislative elections. It will be the fifth direct election for the President of the Republic of China.


Kuomintang(中國國民黨) or KMT's Incumbent President Ma Ying-jeou(馬英九)is standing for re-election.Vice President Vincent Siew Wan-chang(蕭萬長)chose not to run for a second term, and on 19 June 2011 President Ma selected Premier Wu Den-yih(吳敦義)as his running mate.

The Kuomintang of China(KMT), sometimes romanized as Guomindang and translated as the Chinese Nationalist Party is a founding and ruling political party of the Republic of China (ROC). Its guiding ideology is the Three Principles of the People, espoused by Sun Yat-sen.The Kuomintang traces its ideological and organizational roots to the work of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, a proponent of Chinese nationalism, who founded Revive China Society in Honolulu, Hawaii in 1894. In 1905, Sun joined forces with other anti-monarchist societies in Tokyo to form the Tongmenghui or the Revolutionary Alliance, a group committed to the overthrow of the Qing Dynasty and the establishment of a republican government. The KMT was founded by Song Jiaoren and Sun Yat-sen shortly after the Xinhai Revolution. Later led by Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, it ruled much of China from 1928 until its retreat to Taiwan in 1949 after being defeated by the Communist Party of China (CPC) during the Chinese Civil War. There, the KMT controlled the government under a single-party state until reforms in the late 1970s through the 1990s loosened its grip on power.

Together with the People First Party and Chinese New Party, the KMT forms what is known as the Taiwanese Pan-Blue coalition, which supports eventual unification with the mainland. However, the KMT has been forced to moderate its stance by advocating the political and legal status quo of modern Taiwan. The KMT accepts a "One China Principle" - it officially considers that there is only one China and that the Republic of China (not the People's Republic of China) is its legitimate government. However, since 2008, in order to ease tensions with the People's Republic of China, the KMT endorses the "three nos" policy as defined by Ma Ying-jeou - no unification, no independence and no use of force.

Ma is facing a tough challenge as James Soong Chu-yu(宋楚瑜) is also going for the President election, both are from Pan - Blue Coalition. Soong will be spoiling his chances. His victory card is not KMT, but his wife Christine Chow Ma or Chow Mei-ching( 酷酷嫂- 周美青). Based on party line, he is facing dangerous task, especially from the young voters and female voters. His main opponent is a strong woman , chances to be the first female President of Taiwan. It will attract some female voters for the sake of that. Christine Chow will attract some woman votes and family votes for Ma. Some said it is actually the election of Christine Chow Ma and Tsai Ing-wen(蔡英文), despite Christine Chow is not actively in politic. But her popularity among the Taiwanese is a pulling force, especially voters who see strong family as a determination to gauge on character of a candidate. Ma definitely has a plus point, as Tsai Ing-wen is not married. Ma may not be a perfect President, but his tenure was renowned for political stability and peace, that is the environment desired under the current global scenario, which will enhance Taiwan's economic development with mainland China and the world.

投平安、投清廉、投和平、投公義,投給自己與下一代的未來,一票都不能少!我們一起加油!(Ma Ying-jeou,馬英九).

Not only for Taiwan, for Cross-Strait relationship, for East Asia, and for the world.


Democratic Progressive Party(民主進步黨)

Candidates for the DPP(Democratic Progressive Party, 民主進步黨) is Tsai Ing-wen(蔡英文), DDP secretary-general Su Jia-chyuan(蘇嘉全)is her running mate.

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP; 民主進步黨) is a political party in the Republic of China on Taiwan, and the dominant party in the Pan-Green Coalition. Founded in 1986, DPP is the first meaningful opposition party in Taiwan. It has traditionally been associated with strong advocacy of human rights and a distinct Taiwanese identity, including promotion of de jure Taiwan independence.The DPP won the presidency with the election of Chen Shui-bian in March 2000, ending more than half a century of KMT rule in Taiwan. In 2004, President Chen Shui-bian(陳水扁) was re-elected by a narrow margin following a controversial assassination attempt on him and the Vice President Annette Lu only hours before the election. He was convicted, along with his wife Wu Shu-chen, on two bribery charges, he is currently serving a 19-year sentence in the Taipei Prison, reduced from a life sentence in prison. Supporters have insisted that his trial have been unfair and politically motivated, a retribution from the Kuomintang against his years in power. But today he or commonly known as A-Bian (阿扁), is a liability to the party.

Tsai Ing-wen(蔡英文)is not experience as President, her capability is an unknown factor. Her experience as minister was also not strong. She was Minister of the Mainland Affairs Counci from l May 20, 2000 – May 20, 2004 and Vice Premier of the Republic of China from January 25, 2006 – May 21, 2007.

She announced she needs coalition government to rule Taiwan if she won, her cabinet may included members from other political parties in Taiwan. Will the government be stable? as Taiwan has no political history for such government. Still remember when President-elect Ah Bian on March 29, 2000,appointed Mr. Tang Fei(唐飛) as premier to head the new cabinet. With his wide-ranging military and overseas assignments, Mr. Tang has extensive administrative experience and an international outlook, which has promoted relations with other countries and will be necessary for the new cabinet. On October 3, 2000, Mr. Tang resigned from his post amid nuclear power row over Taiwan's energy policy. His appointment last only for a short term, from May 20, 2000 – October 6, 2000, not even for a full year. Can Tsai's new cabinet last if she is elected?....

The ruling Kuomintang has alleged that Tsai approved government investment in Yu Chang Biologics Co. when she was vice premier in early 2007 with the full knowledge that she would leave the Cabinet and chair the company later in the year. Tsai has denied the allegations, saying she did not manage the government investment and was only invited to chair Yu Chang by prominent scientists after she left the Cabinet."

Former President Lee Teng Hui(李登輝), the father of Taiwan independence support Tsai Ing-wen. But Lee's support has no additional effect, as his supporters are already strongly behind Tsai as critical mass.

(His support just remind Taiwan that Lee is forever for Taiwan independence even until his last breath, just like Ah Bian, the one who he supported, who cry for his political stance in a funeral of his mother in law. They are Taiwan independent hard core. Lee can betray his party who nourished him to be President to support Ah Bian, betray his motherland for independence and cultural proximity to Japan, what he had done for Taiwan......the best political drama for Oscar, for personal agenda. It looks just like Chiang Kai-sheh, best actor to do anything for personal ambition....)

「公平正義鋪滿台灣」 Tsai Ing-wen(蔡英文)

Fairness and Justice for Taiwan, and the first female President for Taiwan....


People First Party(親民黨)

Another candidate is PFP(People First Party, 親民黨) chairman James Soong Chu-yu(宋楚瑜), who was a former KMT member. Soong chose National Taiwan University professor emeritus Lin Ruey-shiung(林瑞雄), a career scientist and academic with no political experience, to be his running mate.The PFP was founded by James Soong and his supporters after his failed independent bid for the presidency in 2000. Soong is currently the chairman and dominates much of its politics. The chances for the candidate is slim, it is more a personal agenda for Song, the last for his ambition to become a President. It will spoil the chances of Ma Ying-jeou. PFP run will split the Pan-Blue Coalition vote and hand a winnable election to the DPP. If he is serious on Pan - Blue Coalition, he should not has run for the President election.

It was a repeat of 2000 President election, when he won 36.8% votes, KMT's Lien Chan won 23.1%, Chen Shui-bian won narrowly with 39.3%. Otherwise Lien Chan should had won the 2000 President election if not because of Soong. The total votes for Pan-Blue Coalition was 59.9%, much higher than Chen Shui-bian's 39.3%. However, the votes expectation will be lower this time, but he will be a king maker, as the votes to him will adversely affected Ma Ying-jeou and Pan - Blue Coalition's chances. If that happen, it will seriously affected Soong's reputation in Taiwan's political history. Soong is actually gamble on his political reputation, the result of the 2012 President election will determine what he will stand in history....

酷酷嫂- 周美青(Christine Chow Ma or Chow Mei-ching) , 中华民国第12任总统马英九的妻子,中华民国第一夫人

Chow was born in Hong Kong in 1952. She graduated from Taipei First Girls' High School and received her bachelor of laws degree from National Chengchi University and a master of laws (LL.M.) degree from New York University Law School.

Chow was a high-school classmate of Ma Ying-jeou's sister. Chow and Ma married in New York. She worked as a research assistant, an assistant librarian, and even as maître d’hôtel at a Chinese restaurant to support her husband through Harvard Law School [3] They have two daughters, Lesley (Ma Wei-chung, 馬唯中) and Kelly (Ma Yuan-chung, 馬元中). Lesley (Ma Wei-chung, 馬唯中) was born in 1980 in New York when Ma was attending Harvard; she completed her undergraduate work at Harvard University and is currently a graduate student at New York University. Younger daughter Kelly (Ma Yuan-chung, 馬元中), was born in Taiwan and is currently pursuing her undergraduate studies at Brown University in Rhode Island. Both Lesley and Kelly currently reside in the U.S.

Mrs. Ma was employed at the Mega International Commercial Bank in Taiwan in its legal department. After Ma Ying-jeou won the 2008 presidential election, she had initially said that she will continue her professional work. At the time, the only change she has made to her lifestyle was taking a chauffeured ride to work instead of public transportation.

In a change of course, President Ma, in a 15 July 2008 CNN interview, stated that his wife will resign her post at the bank to avoid any conflicts of interest or arouse suspicions during his presidency. Her resignation marked a major change for the career-oriented First Lady.

Chow is known for staying out of the political limelight and has rarely joined officials' wives at social or official functions in the past. Chow has stated that she will not fulfill "traditional" first lady responsibilities (no former first ladies held an active occupation); she has, however, said that she will fill in on meeting and greeting dignitaries if she has the time.

Chow is described as down-to-earth and assertive while sometimes lacking social and political tact. She once answered a reporter's question regarding her husband's shortcomings saying, "Whatever weak points husbands have, he has them all.".

That is why she is down to earth....









(source: extract from wikipedia)

Voting for Ma Ying-jeou is voting for Christine Chow Ma or Chow Mei-ching(酷酷嫂)...

馬英九周美青 為台灣祈福

External Factors

The two main external factors for any Taiwan President election, are China factor and USA factor.

Taiwan may say it is now a democratic, but still relatively short, and the system may be heavily influence by the businesses, secret society, KMT bureaucracy, corruptions, which tainted their democracy development. But this is the only factor that the Taiwanese is proud of in their justification for independence. Taiwan's democracy is tainted with foreign support, from USA and Japan. China is an important factor in their President election.

China factor

China is no longer the same as when Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek retreat to Taiwan in 1949. Today, China is an economically strong country. China(中国), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is the most populous state in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens.Since the introduction of market-based economic reforms in 1978, China has become the world's fastest-growing major economy,and the world's largest exporter and second-largest importer of goods. It is the world's second-largest economy, after the United States, by both nominal GDP and purchasing power parity (PPP). On per capita terms, China ranked 90th by nominal GDP and 91st by GDP (PPP) in 2011, according to the IMF. China is a recognized nuclear weapons state and has the world's largest standing army, with the second-largest defense budget. In 2003, China became the third nation in the world, after the former Soviet Union and the United States, to independently launch a successful manned space mission. China has been characterized as a potential superpower by a number of academics,military analysts,and public policy and economics analysts.

Although a middle-income country by Western standards, the PRC's rapid growth has pulled hundreds of millions of its people out of poverty since 1978. Today, about 10% of the Chinese population live below the poverty line of US$1 per day (down from 64% in 1978), while life expectancy has increased to 73 years. More than 93% of the population is literate, compared to only 20% in 1950. Urban unemployment in China reportedly declined to 4% by the end of 2007, although true overall unemployment may be as high as 10%.

China's middle-class population (defined as those with annual income of at least US$17,000) has reached more than 100 million as of 2011, while the number of super-rich individuals worth more than 10 million yuan (US$1.5 million) is estimated to be 825,000, according to Hurun Report. Based on the Hurun rich list, the number of US dollar billionaires in China doubled from 130 in 2009 to 271 in 2010, giving China the world's second-highest number of billionaires. China's retail market was worth RMB 8.9 trillion (US$1.302 trillion) in 2007, and is growing at 16.8% annually. China is also now the world's second-largest consumer of luxury goods behind Japan, with 27.5% of the global share.

(source: wikipedia)

No mater what is your political stance, historically Taiwan is part of China, Republic of China. Today, despite the retreat of KMT to Taiwan in 1949, Taiwan still part of People Republic of China. The main threat from Taiwan is the Taiwan independence. China is no longer a weak country, economically she is strong. Regular weekend direct, cross-strait charter flights between mainland China and Taiwan, under three links policy (三通) resumed on July 4, 2008 for the first time since 1950. Taiwan now is having mass flow of Chinese tourists to the island, and import of their agricultural products, Taiwan's investment in mainland China is subtabtial. The cross- strait relationship(海峡两岸关系)now is stable, it is beneficial to both China and Taiwan economy and its people. There are government and private engagement and dialogue between China and Taiwan. The Strait relationship is moving in positive way.

This trend may not be happy to everybody, but it cannot deny that it facilitate political stability and promote closer economic development and stability in the region of East Asia.

The result of the President election 2012, has impact to the Cross- Strait Relationship. Taiwan cannot go alone. There is too much inter-government and cross- strait interaction now. So any campaign that China's reaction is not important for future of Taiwan is day dreaming and short sighted....stable cross- strait relationship is important to future of Taiwan.

But Taiwan politic is sensitive to the voices from China, any indication of support to any candidates will have negative effect on the candidates chances. China now learn to remain silence towards Taiwan President election. China is not neutral, she strongly support Ma for the status quo, for stability of Cross-Strait relationship, for political stability of East Asia, and for hope of unification of China with Taiwan in future.....

Taiwan just cannot ignore China now.....

USA factor

On international relationship, Taiwan is politically and military influenced by USA and Japan. Ironically, in Sept 2011, two rival camps of next President Election 2012 visited USA in their promotion campaign. President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九)'s KMT team and defended his top election campaign aide King Pu-tsung’s (金溥聰) trip to the US as an opportunity to promote Taiwanese policies in the US.Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) US visit has apparently boosted her support rate. From their activities in USA it is clearly revealed the USA foreign policy on strait relationship is not straight forward, but critical for both camps, with hidden strategic move best know to them. Why must Taiwan professed as either a part of China or independent Taiwan, visited to USA for their support? This revealed Taiwan democracy is fake, Taiwan still need USA for military and political support to survive, both candidates know the games....

At one side USA only recognize People Republic of China as legitimate government for China, at the same time supplies arms to Taiwan, recognize as part of China by USA. The reason given was:

"Obama administration for telling US Congress on Wednesday that it plans a US$5.3 billion (S$6.83 billion) upgrade of Taiwan's F-16 fighter fleet. The US offer - which includes sales of advanced air-to-air missiles, laser- and GPS-guided bombs and radars -Washington says it wants Beijing and Taipei to determine their future peacefully, and that it is obliged by US law to help the island defend itself. Taiwan said the upgrade of the F-16s would contribute to regional peace by improving its defense capability in the face of what it called a continued threat from China."

What is USA(an outsider) action to supply arms to Taiwan, a part of China in the face of threat from their own government(as recognized by USA in one China policy), is clear cut interference of internal affairs of China. In military or international law, an unfriendly act, which can provoke war. The excuses by Obama' administration was "wants Beijing and Taipei to determine their future "peacefully", and that it is obliged by US law to help the island defend itself". What a hypocrisy, by supplying arms, the Taiwan issue can solved peacefully, why not Obama as Nobel Peace Prize winner, be a peace maker and call for peaceful negotiation for unification(instead of supply arms)???

Logically, USA's hypocrisy was diplomatically supported one China policy, militarily support Taiwan's defense(part of China), indirectly revealed actually USA support war between mainland China and Taiwan. It is just like saying I recognize USA as one nation, but I supply arms to Hawaii independent movement to fight Obama's central government...what a silly and cunning strategy, USA is using.... but they gained strategic advantage economically and militarily over East Asia. this is especially so when USA is facing economic decline, war or arms sales is the last resort to boost their economy. But unfortunately their allies, Europe faced similar economic problems and has wake up against unnecessary war. USA must find other way to boost its arms industry as war become difficult with less allies, strait relationship is the cash cow.

The potential hot spots under USA global strategy, for 2012 may be Iran, Korea & East Asia, Burma and South China Sea. Looking at their activities, USA may be created another bamboo curtain or wall to contain China. Taiwan will always be their chess. I do no think they are happy with any sign of Chinese unification. That means they will lost Taiwan, and solely depended on Japan and South Korea. Burma however is their potential card, another one is India and perhaps Vietnam.

USA is also facing President Election in the 2012. China remained one of the political agenda for President candidates. 2012 may not be peaceful year for the world, Taiwan President election is important for global politic, especially strait relationship.

Without the support of USA, can Taiwan go for independence alone? a question to be ponder....

Other factor, Japan

Another external factor is Japan, China's neighbour, linked to USA by The Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan (日本国とアメリカ合衆国との間の相互協力及び安全保障条約 Nippon-koku to Amerika-gasshūkoku to no Aida no Sōgo Kyōryoku oyobi Anzen Hoshō Jōyaku). Its defense, like USA perceived China as threat, revealed in their defense white paper. Japan is waiting for the timing, the right time to gain their political benefits....they played their strategy similarly on Strait relationship, never call for peaceful unification solution as neighbor....

Japan however is good neighbor of Taiwan due to historical factor. Unlike former President Lee Teng Hui(李登輝)'s reign, the impart is neutral whether Ma or Tsai.

In conclusion, as an outsider, if you ask me if I am a Taiwanese, who should I vote? It depend whether the voter is looking at the big environment or local or small environment. If I look inward toward local environment, and look narrowly to Taiwanese independence , Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) will be the choice. but if I look at the bigger picture, Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) will be the choice. The game for James Soong Chu-yu(宋楚瑜)was over, he has no chance. My card is on Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九)....and the vote for Christine Chow Mei-ching(周美青)......

However the election result will be close, it can go either way....

Further readings

1. Taiwan Inc. Backs Ma Re-Election in Push for China Business,
2. US moves raise suspicions that it is favoring incumbent in Taiwan presidential election,
3. Taiwan's Ma sets course for "10 golden years",
4. Taiwan presidential candidates focus on economy, not China,,0,5607495.story?track=rss
5. Former Taiwan President Lee Backs Opposition’s Tsai Before Vote,
6. 想起的豈只是宇昌,想起的豈只是宇昌
(國光石化」是近20年,石化業最重大的投資計劃。是蘇貞昌、蔡英文在行政院正副院長時強力通過,去年竟然又強力否決,最後,馬英九出面善後,主動喊停。馬英九政府只是延續蘇蔡政策,竟然也會被打得裡外不是人。夠笨。但這個過程裡,真的看到了政客們「巧言令色」的嘴臉。但是,停就停了。石化業的「專業哀鳴」在政治正確下的聲浪中,被淹沒了。我同情他們被政客玩弄的苦楚,無能為力. .....重述這一段沒多久前的荒謬公衛史,我可以想像綠營必然重彈老調,說「人民有知的權利」。這是廢話。人民當然有知的權利。我只是想問:為什麼從國際跨海而來的宇昌是「寶」?為什麼從台灣走向國際,取得國際認証的國光卻是「草」?....當然,現在更不會有人告訴你:同樣是生技,差點被民進黨搞死的,不只是現在生死未卜的宇昌,還有當時政黨輪替前的國光)

Note: Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) won the Taiwan President election 2012. Congratulation.

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