4/05/2007

Where's Wang?

Either today or yesterday was the 32nd anniversary of Chiang Kai-shek's passing. It coincides with Tomb Sweeping Day (April 6), a national holiday in Taiwan. On this day, Taiwanese tidy up the graves of their ancestors, burn ghost money, ghost cars, ghost credit cards, pictures of sexy young women, etc. These items can be used on the other side.

I was watching the local news. There was a report on some yahoos gathering down at Chiang Kai-shek, er..., I mean Taiwan Democracy, Memorial Hall to commemorate his passing. Unlike most people in Taiwan, these guys are actually sad to see Chiang gone. The usual gang was on hand, Ma Ing-jieu, James Soong, Lien Chan, basically anyone whose dad got a plum position once Chiang had had the Taiwanese individual holding the post dumped in a river or buried in the bush. They were making political speeches, like it would endear them to the local population. Talk about dumb.

Then a reporter interviewed a spectator. The spectator started by asking "Where's Wang Jyng Ping?!" It was an interesting point. After all, Wang is the only native Taiwanese in serious contention for the upcoming KMT leadership primary. I missed most of what the man said after that because my wife got pissed and started talking, especially when the spectator shouted: "Wang is disrespecting Chiang, the Republic of China's [Taiwan's] hero!"

Where is Wang? I often wonder about this guy. Is it possible that he's another Lee Tung-hui in the making? He's gonna kiss ass for as long as necessary and then, once he has the reins, he's gonna do something very unKMTish, like advocate democracy or cooperation with the opposition party when national interests are at stake? Either way, it must be pretty tough having to tag around after someone like Lien Chan.

2 comments:

Thoth Harris said...

Yeah, from my rather minimal knowledge of Taiwan politics and recent history, I am impressed by Leng Teng Hui, as well. He is such an interesting and eccentric figure. After all, like Gorbachev in Russia, he liberalized Taiwan so Taiwan could have free elections.

Unlike Gorbachev, he is still politically active, and seems to still have ideas. I just wish he was less mysterious about what he is and where he's going. But that's what makes it interesting, too.

Lee might be the one to save Taiwan. From China's phagocytizing Taiwan. From vanishing into minor or dependent country status.

The KMT and DPP seem to polarize people. Maybe the DPP doesn't intend to or justify such a result or reaction. I am all for an even more pluralistic system.

Patrick Cowsill said...

"The KMT and DPP seem to polarize people." Ain't that the truth. Either you can love China or you can hate anyone that doesn't speak Taiwanese or look like a local.

In the recent presidential election, my wife figures four million Taiwanese did not vote. There was no third party on the ballot. It seems that the two parties, though unable to cooperate on anything that would actually benefit the Taiwanese people or this country, are able to put their heads together when it comes to protecting their own interests.

I wonder if a third party is going to emerge in the future - one that speaks to the things that all these marginalized individuals care about?