Skip to content

What’s in an anthem? Tsai Ing-wen’s difficulty with the national song

As the world heads into 2012, Taiwan moves closer to electing its next president. It is a tradition in Taiwan to hold a flag raising ceremony in front of the presidential hall at the start of every year, and hundreds of people make their way to the Ketagalan Boulevard early in the morning just to attend the event. Besides rejoicing in the pleasant atmosphere of seeing the “blue sky, white sun, red ground” (qingtian bairi mandihong, i.e. the R.O.C. flag) beat in the sky and the Honor Guards marching neatly before the presidential hall, the early birds are rewarded with hats and scarves produced in the colors of the flag. The high point of the event is marked by raising of the flag while the crowd sings the national anthem.

With the election just around the corner, it is usual for the candidates to avoid meeting in public and New Years Day is no exception to the norm. While President Ma attended the flag raising ceremony in the country’s capital, unsurprisingly, DPP candidate Tsai Ing-wen and fellow supporters chose to celebrate the beginning of 2012 at their home base in Tainan. Compared to Taipei, Tainan’s fair weather was just right for early morning events, even though in this case, the flag might not beat as hard without strong wind attending to it. Aside from the lovely weather, what is worth noting in the “green” ceremony is that Tsai seems to have some trouble singing the national anthem. In other words, she skipped a few lines.

In order to fulfil the demands of good citizenship in Taiwan, one is expected to know the national anthem by heart and rise to the anthem whenever it is played. As a person who grew up and went through proper education on the island, Tsai can be expected to know the national anthem well, just like any other good citizen should.

So she missed a few lines, big deal right?

Wrong. Tsai’s refusal to speak the words should not be slighted, as it is loaded with political meaning, especially at this critical juncture. What Tsai deliberately skipped over may be said to be the essence of the anthem, Doctor Sun Yat-Sen’s teaching of the Three Principles of minzu, minquan, minsheng (nationalism, democracy and people’s welfare). The opening lines that Tsai “forgot” due to amnesia go as “sanminzhuyi, wudangsuozong, yijianminguo,” which literally means “the Three Principles of the People are the purpose of the party, for the establishment of a republic.”

Once the words of the anthem are put under the spotlight, it is clear why Tsai avoided singing the lines. Referring to the national anthem, the “party” could mean no other than the Kuomintang or Nationalist Party, which happens to be the DPP’s main rival in the coming election, while the “republic” could stand for no else than the Republic of China, something that has haunted Tsai ever since she began campaigning for the election. Party rivalry aside, the major stumbling block for the DPP effort to reclaim office is cross-Strait relations. With Taiwan successfully rebuilding its relationship with China under the KMT administration in the past three years, leading to increased economic exchange across the Strait, the DPP confronts the pressure of doing better or just keeping up with the KMT’s record. The dilemma that Tsai faces in this election is whether to hold firmly to the DPP’s basic purpose of Taiwanese independence in order to consolidate the support of party hardliners, or to ease up on the DPP’s basic position in search of potential opportunities for interactions with Beijing.

So far, the result has been disappointing. Tsai Ing-wen and the DPP has failed to provide the public with a clear platform on cross-Strait relations. With the election just around the corner, tackling the issue of cross-Strait relations may be “too little too late” anyways. If most of the voters in Taiwan are rational enough to focus on the big picture of peace and prosperity across the Strait, other considerations aside, the DPP can look forward to a tough battle ahead. The key variable now lays with James Soong, who succeeded in dividing the election in 2000.

In the end though, leaving politics aside, it is a pity to see Tsai make the effort to skip the first line of the national anthem. After all, “democracy” is one of the key values proposed in the Three Principles (and what the “Democratic” Progressive Party stands for) and “republic” has a much deeper meaning than just the now politicized state title of “Republic of China.”

Tony Tai-Ting Liu is doctoral student at the Graduate Institute of International Politics, National Chung Hsing University, Taiwan. He can be reached at: stanggoftibia1984@yahoo.com.tw

Published inInternational PoliticsTaiwan 2012

18 Comments

  1. The problematic words in the national anthem are the reference to the “party” and that is the reason Tsai chose not to sing those words. While the anthem does not mention the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) specifically there is no doubt which party the lyrics refer. The KMT sees itself as integral to and synonymous with the Republic of China (ROC). For Tsai, who says “Taiwan is the ROC, the ROC is Taiwan”, it is against democratic principles to acknowledge the party as founder of the state. The ROC as it currently exists on Taiwan is a democratic polity of 23 million people. These people participate in elections where they can freely choose from a number of parties which is real democracy. The party-state of the KMT which is still embedded in the lyrics of the national anthem is an unfortunate anachronism and relic of the authoritarian past.

  2. Michal Thim Michal Thim

    Perhaps it is not really correct when anthem refers to one party, in this case rival party. I myself would be reluctant to sing an anthem that would specifically mention one of the competing political parties. I am not sure if that should be interpreted as being agains democracy or republic (or so the hint at the end seems to tell). As to cross-strait relations, I am not convinced that any of the candidate provides anything but rather ambiguous ideas. And it is not that surprising…after all, whatever whoever says, there is still China that makes its own decision. DPP simply needs to find its “1992 consensus” and so does China (if not now then eventually but inevitably)…the sooner the better I would say. And Taiwan/ROC in a meantime can perhaps think about slightly changing the text of the anthem so like half of the people would not feel awkward singing that…including presidential candidates…

    Michal Thim
    IMAS
    NCCU

  3. 【The opening lines that Tsai “forgot” due to amnesia go as “sanminzhuyi, wudangsuozong, yijianminguo,” which literally means “the Three Principles of the People are the purpose of the party, for the establishment of a republic.”】

    “the purpose of the party” is not a correct translation of the Chinese version, 吾黨所宗. means: “the purpose of our party. 吾黨 means “our party,” not “the party.” People who know about Chinese shouldn’t have made that error.

  4. Liu uses something closer to the “official” translation of “三民主義,吾黨所宗” than to the literal one, which Echo gives above.

    Fail #1.

    Liu also (“deliberately”?—to borrow his word) misinterprets Tsai Ing-wen’s stance on the “ROC.” She recently reiterated what has been stated in official DPP documents since at least 1999—that Taiwan is a sovereign, independent country currently known as the ROC, that it’s not part of the PRC, and that the DPP advocates “the development of a new national identity.”

    If it wasn’t deliberate, that’s Fail #2.

    And while democracy (民權主義) is indeed one of Sun Yat-sen’s “Three Principles,” one of the other two is “nationalism,” and it refers to an ROC which includes occupied Tibet and independent Mongolia. Furthermore, an alternate definition of “民族主義” is “racism.”

    If that’s not deliberate either, it’s Fail #3.

    I have a rhetorical question: If this “ROC” stuff is so important, why is Ma Ying-jeou’s official campaign web site “http://www.taiwanbravo.tw,” not “www.ROCbravo.ROC”?

  5. Jeesss, Tim, I didn’t know that there exists an “official” translation of the national anthem, in which the “party-specific” meaning is removed. Why would these people re-create an English version to make foreigners think differently about the national anthem ?

    • Indeed, there is, although the Government Information Office lists the translator as “Tu Ting-hsiu” (different from the name listed on Wikipedia).

  6. Ray Ray

    It frustrates me when Taiwanese people who are clearly biased towards the KMT and some Western media attribute the improvement of cross-strait relations in the past 4 years to Ma’s “brilliant” policies. First of all, Ma’s cross-strait opening policies are mere continuation and exaggeration of DPP’s efforts prior to 2008. He has been able to push for closer ties so quickly not because of what he did, but who he was. He is the chairman of the CHINESE Nationalist Party. To China, the cross-strait issue has always been a party-to-party issue between the CCP and the KMT. The DPP is merely a thorn in the thigh of the internal reconciliation between two Chinese political entities. Make no mistake, between 2000 and 2008 the DPP administration made tremendous amount of effort to bring peace in the Taiwan Strait, China just would not have it with the Taiwanese party. All in all, Ma did not accomplish anything, China did. China allowed further openness after the Taiwanese people announced to the world that they are too indeed Chinese with their vote for Ma in 2008.

  7. 【 Party rivalry aside, the major stumbling block for the DPP effort to reclaim office is cross-Strait relations. ……
    So far, the result has been disappointing. Tsai Ing-wen and the DPP has failed to provide the public with a clear platform on cross-Strait relations.】

    This is entirely the KMT’s talking point. Tsai’s cross-strait plan has been very clear: Taiwanese has to reach a consensus before the government or any politician can force the relationship into any shape. She has emphasized it many times, that it’s the due process of democracy, that what people want should have been respected.

    What the people in Taiwan really want ? Many polls already showed, during the past couple of years, that most Taiwanese want to maintain unchanged. On that base, any drastic changes, either toward unification or independence, should not be forced upon people by any party.

    That’s what Tsai has been talking about — the process of respecting people, the process of democracy, that the people has the right to make own choice at the time of their own choice.

    But, people like Ma Ying-jeou can’t understand that. Ma keeps insisting that Taiwanese be put under the plan of the fabricated 92 consensus, and he keeps saying that he doesn’t understand what Tsai’s approach is.

    They cannot understand it — or to be more specific, they can’t afford to admit they do. Their ruling is based on the mindset of authoritarian bureaucracy in which they lead you follow. They can’t allow a democratic process to break their ruling apart.

    So they have to keep painting Tsai’s cross-strait plan as vague. You will keep hearing that accusation from people.

    【If most of the voters in Taiwan are rational enough to focus on the big picture of peace and prosperity across the Strait, other considerations aside, the DPP can look forward to a tough battle ahead.】

    Only those who live far away or up in the la la land can afford “focusing on the big picture.” Those who are in the real land worry about their income, their education, their kids, their future, and why the KMT’s wealth increases so fast during a time when people’s general income suffered.

    【The key variable now lays with James Soong, who succeeded in dividing the election in 2000.】

    Yet another talking point of the KMT to paint Soong into a bad guy. Many people simply adopt it without any fact check.

    In reality (not in the la la land) in 2000, Soong got 36.84% of the votes , while the KMT’s candidates, Lien, got only 23.1%. Why on earth would any right minded person argue that the person who got 36.8%— but not the one who got only 23.1% — is the one to blame for dividing the votes ? They would have agreed to an arrangement that a 23.1%-support candidate is more qualified than a 36.8%-support one, so the 36.8%-support one should not have participated in the election.

    Oh, when they make that argument to blame Soong, they always forgot to tell you, that back in 2000, Ma Ying-jeou was the one who announced a poll right before the voting date, saying that Lien was winning over Soong by a huge margin. Judging from the huge lead of Soong over lien = 36.8% – 23.1% = 14.7%, Ma’s claim couldn’t have been true.

    But Ma used that to call for all blue voters to switch votes from Soong to Lien. As a result, Soong lose the campaign to Chen SB’s 39.3% — a merely 2.5% lost. If Ma didn’t announce that ridiculous poll before the election, Chen might not have won, which means the blue camp wouldn’t have lost the government in 2000.

    So who was to blame on the blue loss back in 2000 ?

    Fact check, please, guys.

  8. Chris Wang Chris Wang

    Honestly, I haven’t sung the national anthem since high school, when I came to understand the song was originally the theme song of the KMT. That is just not right. And it does not mean I am not patriotic.

    I imagine what it will be like if the US national anthem is the Republican Party’s theme song…

  9. Normal Citizen Normal Citizen

    I have to agree with Echo, the piece is disappointing. It fails to understand Tsai’s policies on cross strait issues while stating that her platform on cross-strait relations is vague. This is clearly what the KMT wants the public to believe in.

    And yes, the first 3 lines of the anthem clearly describes KMT (The national anthem was originally the party song for KMT) I don’t see any connections between patriotism and Tsai’s refusal to sing the anthem. Personally I ain’t willing to sing ANY lines within the anthem since I realized its political background.

  10. Tony Liu Tony Liu

    Thanks for the feedback everyone.

    Honestly speaking, I should put out my take on the coming election before going further. For me, both parties have been disappointing thus far ie. I don’t know who to vote for, which actually reflects quite a number of people’s stance (so watch out for low voter turnout). However, despite all the criticism, given the choice in the end, and in terms of maintaining stable relations across the Strait, Ma would absolutely be the one to go for. This is different from saying that I am pan-blue, as there are indeed many outrageous things the government has done over the past 3-4 years.

    Going back to some of the criticisms, I think one should look “deeper” into the facts:

    1. from a realist point of view, the reality of international politics is that the strong leads and the weak follows. If you think that it is China that should be credited for improved relations across the Strait, it is indeed so. As pointed out above, the long term antagonism between the KMT and CCP actually translates into a certain kind of “mutual trust” in negotiations today, and it is largely upon this trust that Beijing is willing to deal with and acknowledge Taipei. In other words, in a certain sense, Ma is just a symbolic figure of the KMT (thanks Ray for pointing this out). If another figure within the KMT fills Ma’s role and unless he completely breaks from the party’s long term cross-Strait policy, the CCP would still want to deal with the KMT. Regardless of what Tsai can offer, the DPP’s tough battle lies in establishing a solid foundation for negotiations with China after Chen Shui-bian basically uprooted the turf during his office.

    2. It is apparent that so called Cross-Strait relations is the issue in debate in this election. So what is the DPP’s position in terms of Cross-Strait relations? Without revising the party charter for Taiwan independence, one should be real doubtful of what the DPP can really offer. It is unsurprising if Beijing shares the same doubt as well.

    (quote from above) “Taiwan is a sovereign, independent country currently known as the ROC, that it’s not part of the PRC, and that the DPP advocates ‘the development of a new national identity.’”

    If the quote stands for Tsai’s position, Beijing would be foolhardy to even start talking with the DPP, as EVERY part of the statement challenges China’s position on Taiwan. Particularly, what is the new national identity? Should this new national identity be decided by the Taiwanese people at the poll station? Given Chen’s toying with referendum a few years back, it is highly doubtful whether Beijing would want to play with fire again.

    3. I agree with Echo’s point that there are more important things to worry about eg. education, income, economy etc and this is precisely why this coming election is much of a disappointment. But again, given the choice in the end, I believe the party that can at least maintain stable relations with Beijing should be granted support. The big picture I am referring to is that Taiwan’s economic development (if not most of the world’s growth in the past few years) is hinged on good relations across the Strait. Although it may be too early to conclude on the effects of ECFA, but without first bettering relations with China, Taiwan would not even have a chance in participating and competing in the liberalization process in the region.

    4. Soong is critical in the upcoming election because with basically little to vote for other than Cross Strait relations, the number of votes that Soong can attract would be decisive, much to the detriment of the KMT and benefit of the DPP.

    5. regarding translation, “the” is used instead of “our” to avoid ambiguity, as the statement referred to Tsai Ing-wen.

    6. it’s unfortunate that much of everything that goes around in Taiwan is politicized. The point I am trying to make with the national anthem is that politics shouldn’t be taken this far. Whether one likes the anthem or not, it’s a historical legacy, and respect should be paid to tradition. Why can’t Ma and Tsai both appear at the flag raising ceremony on New Years Day and both sing ALL THE LINES (this is important) of the national song in tribute of the island/country that all Taiwanese love?

  11. The dilemma that Tsai faces in this election is whether to hold firmly to the DPP’s basic purpose of Taiwanese independence in order to consolidate the support of party hardliners, or to ease up on the DPP’s basic position in search of potential opportunities for interactions with Beijing.

    This writer appears not to have noticed that both anecdotal evidence and polls show no disaffection among the Deep Green core over Tsai’s cross-strait policies, since everyone on all sides knows that Tsai supports an independent and democratic Taiwan. Hence this “dilemma” is not now, and never was, a dilemma faced by Tsai.

    I would argue that her actual dilemma is all the individuals in Taiwan with a good education and experience of democratic values both abroad and at home who nevertheless support the KMT because that was the way that they were raised, and thus are completely unable to spot the conflict between the values of the party they support and the democratic values they espouse in all other situations. It’s sad.

    Michael Turton

  12. Tony Liu commented:
    ————————————————————–
    I don’t know who to vote for, which actually reflects quite a number of people’s stance (so watch out for low voter turnout).
    ————————————————————–

    Less than two weeks ago, a Taiwan Brain Trust poll “showed that 86.7 percent of eligible voters intended to vote.” If that’s accurate, it would be 5.01 percentage points higher than the highest turnout of any of Taiwan’s previous presidential elections.

    Tony also wants to support “the party that can at least maintain stable relations with Beijing.” If that can happen only under the preconditions (“one China which includes Taiwan”) which Tony is apparently ready to accept, most Taiwanese don’t want any part of that. For example, a September 2010 poll by the so-called “Mainland [sic] Affairs Council” says that only 1.7% want unification now, and only 8.1% want it later.

    For Tony’s reference, I’ll also provide some data from a DPP poll from August 2011. It indicates that only 13.8% of Taiwanese agree with Ma Ying-jeou’s claim that “one China” is the ROC. If Tony feels the poll is biased, he can go ahead and double the number.

    Tony finishes off by asking: “Why can’t Ma and Tsai both appear at the flag raising ceremony on New Years Day and both sing ALL THE LINES (this is important) of the national song […] ?” I don’t think Tony wants to understand: It’s not a “national song” if mentions any party—much less the party of a foreign colonizer.

    Honestly, can the things Tony Liu says about these subjects be taken at face value?

  13. Why can’t Ma and Tsai both appear at the flag raising ceremony on New Years Day and both sing ALL THE LINES (this is important) of the national song in tribute of the island/country that all Taiwanese love?

    Because it’s the Party song of a foreign colonizer. What about that is not difficult to understand?

    from a realist point of view, the reality of international politics is that the strong leads and the weak follows.

    Realism is the world view that national competition is driven by self-interest. It says nothing about who must be elected President of the ROC or what their stance on China might be, since identifying the “self-interests” of Taiwan and China in this regard is problematic and hinges on what one considers those two entities to be.

    That doesn’t even get into the argument that the realist argument is simply a form of theoretical whitewash for an anti-democratic ideology of elite power. I note that prominent realists involved in the China policy debate are either themselves or their family members doing business with Beijing. The argument for realism is the argument that we must accept (1) elite determination of what interests are (2) elite determination of what policy is and (3) elites treating all relations as assets subject to foreclosure or sale. Essentially, the greatness of a realist policy is measured by the number of allies it sells out. Witness current US realist policies toward Taiwan….

    Michael

  14. Ray Ray

    Tony, your attempt to apply IR’s realist theory here using such phrase like “the strong leads and the weak follows” truly demonstrates your lack of understanding in both the cross-strait relation and international relations theories. First, between Taiwan and China, one wants to engulf the other, this is not a case of a weak state following the lead of a stronger ally state. Only those who blindly follow the KMT’s Chinese national line of eventual “re-unification” would desire Taiwan to “follow” the PRC lead into the CCP’s predatory mouth would think that the Taiwanese should to adhere to the PRC attitude. No state or people for that matter in history “follow” the lead of a stronger state that strives to invade and occupy. If you want to support your point with the recent American hegemonic power as an example it would be a very amateur attempt. Let’s take a look at Japan. After her defeat in WW2, a weak Japan benefited from the United States but did not “follow” it into battle with North Korea nor did it enter the Second Indo-China War. Japan did make concessions to the United States but let’s not forget again that the United States did not want to invade or make Japan a permanent territory of America. So no Tony, in the realist point of view, “the weak” does not “follow”, “the weak” forms policies with consideration of the power relations in the international arena, where some states are strong, and some stronger. “The weak” only “follows” “the strong” that wishes to annex it when it is committing national suicide, which is what Ma and his KMT seem very eager to do. So since China would not allow cross-strait peace if Tsai takes office, the Taiwanese should put Ma in again? No. Only from a pair of short-sighted, blue glasses-wearing eyes would see that it is the right thing to do. The Taiwanese people must let China know that we want peace and prosperity between the two-sides, but that China needs to deal with Taiwan, and NOT the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT). By letting the Chinese ignore the people of Taiwan and continue to respond only to the KMT, we are killing democracy on the island. Of course, the KMT would not care as the practice of democracy is not in their culture (Ma was against direct presidential election by the people let’s not forget). Also, it is important to note that Tony you are clearly biased and blue as you attribute Taiwan’s “great” economic performance to Ma’s cross-strait policy. If you really look at the numbers, Ma’s performance is not much better than Chen’s. If you want to blame it on the financial crisis, please note that with Taiwan’s economic structure, the early 2000’s dot com bubble burst was a much bigger blow to the Silicon Island. Historically Taiwan’s usually unscathed by financial crises dude to our industrial structure. Moreover, please compare recent economic and unemployment performances of Taiwan to Singapore and South Korea, who do not heatedly attempt to integrate their markets to that of China’s.

  15. Tony Liu Tony Liu

    okay guys, I don’t think this debate is getting anywhere, or basically the situation you’ll find on the ground here in Taiwan. I agree with some of the points but disagree with some. It is unfortunate that discussion over Taiwanese politics can never be calm and objective, as speaking for this and that party is deemed as taking sides; people are generally quick at pointing fingers at one another, saying that you’re pan-green/ pan-blue (which is also part of the reason most locals here ie your avg. people don’t really share their political views with others).

    Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy seeing democracy at work in Taiwan and am all for everything that comes with democracy. However, it should be pointed out that democracy is not the cure of everything. If it is, problems across the Strait would have been resolved by now: either unification or independence, or better yet, status quo, take your pick. In the name of democracy, we’ll let the people decide.

    The truth is, and I agree with this, many people choose “status quo” or remaining unchanged. Why? because most people see things as it is right now as being in their interest. But (to use Richard Bush’s words) does that solve the knots within and across the Strait? No, because it’s just putting off the problem. As China grows, the problem gets bigger for Taiwan. But who knows what the future would hold? As a matter of fact, I do not want to see any of the candidates move forward rashly towards independence/unification; a much better strategy may be to leave politics aside and focus on economic development and other areas of interest that both entities across the Strait may share eg. nuclear safety, legal cooperation, cultural exchange etc. This is the big picture some people are trying to paint here. But like all things here, discussions are usually overwhelmed and cut short when politics steps in.

    So, to the points I disagree:

    1. If the KMT is still seen as an authoritarian colonial group from the Mainland, I think I need to give two thumbs up for the DPP for selling this outdated concept to people (and thumbs down for the KMT for not even trying to defend this). Yes, history textbooks describe Chiang and the KMT as losers that escaped to Taiwan and basically set up a “foreign” government on the island. I agree that the KMT, like all parties out there, have done some outrageous things. However, let’s face up to the hard fact: without the early KMT, Taiwan would not be the economically prosperous country it is today. It’s undeniable. A comparison with Japan’s rule over Taiwan can be made. Despite resent for “little Japan” here, Japan’s contribution to the establishment of infrastructure on the island is undeniable. Please give fair credits to the so called “colonizers.”

    2. Taiwan Brain Trust is a think tank under the DPP. I personally have strong doubts over numbers they give. As a matter of fact, I am real suspicious of all the numbers that flow around on the media and publications here in Taiwan.

    3. Being a believer of Keohane and Nye, I guess I have jumped on the wrong wagon again by speaking for the realists. Yes, Taiwan does try to form its own policies but I have strong doubts as to what extent its policies have an impact on the way Cross Strait relations/international relations is heading right now. I have strong doubts as to how many people out there today would actually believe that Taiwan can walk its own path on the world stage without crossing China on the way. In terms of economic/trade policy, Tsai’s statement of “joining hands with the world and walk towards China” is lovely, but looking at the past few years, without ECFA and Beijing giving the nod on Taipei to go forward with FTA talks with Singapore etc, Taiwan would remain shut out from the world (Taipei’s participation in the WHA could also be cited as well). In short, realpolitik at play; Beijing has a lot of leverage over Taipei as it is now.

    Going back to the Three Principles of Dr. Sun Yat-Sen (which this article is really about), it should be noted that perhaps when the concept was first introduced, Sun had certain priorities in mind, hence the order of the three principles: nationalism first ie. unification of Great China or Zhonghua, then comes democracy, before finally coming to people’s livelihood. If one understands the order involved in the Three Principles, it would be easy to understand what Ma and the KMT is trying to do with the so called 92 consensus.

    However, with Cross Strait relations remaining in an utter stalemate right now, I would challenge that the priorities are completely upside down now. Nationalism/unification is the least thing most Taiwanese people could care about now (as it’s difficult) while democracy is taken for granted. People’s livelihood or to use a more modern term, “the economy,” is what most people care about now.

    To end with the points I agree. Yes, most politicians here live in la-la land. They are not bringing up the issues that are most important to the everyday life of avg people eg. education, wages, unemployment, social benefits. I am not a big believer of so called “trickle down economics” (of which the KMT seems to advocate) but I am also not naive enough to believe that Taiwan can grow without China. Regarding Taiwan’s poor performance among the Asian Tigers, it is sad to see and it has a lot to do with the education system here. The financial crash had some impact but a lot of it comes from within Taiwan. Again, politicians and bureaucrats living in la-la land are killing the island’s future.

    So no, Ray, no blue-glasses, they’re clear. As a matter of fact, let’s put down all our glasses, shall we?

  16. Ray Ray

    Dear Tony,

    You are right. This debate is getting no where and let me explain why. You are clearly pan-blue. It is not an insult, it is a fact that you are doing a very poor job of hiding so there really is no need for further attempt to conceal such reality. The fact that you are pan-blue is the reason why this debate has come to a deadlock and this is why: you are a Chinese Nationalist.

    It is clear in your writing. You continue to reference Dr. Sun’s 3 Principles to add weight to your argument. You found it inappropriate that Tsai refused to sing some words in the KMT anthem, despite the fact that the song and the founding of the ROC have nothing to do with Formosa and the people on the island. You talk about Sun’s principle of national unification. However, when he came up with those principles Taiwan was not a part of China and Taiwan was NOT included in his doctrine. You say nationalism/unification is the last thing that Taiwanese people today care about. To correct you on that one, most Taiwanese people NEVER cared about Chinese nationalism and the unification of China. The fact that you lack knowledge in Taiwanese history, and putting the Chinese Nationalists’ doctrine before the Taiwanese people demonstrates just how pan-blue you are. Another sign that you are not a Taiwan national is the fact that you gave reference to the Taiwanese resentment of “little Japan”. No, Taiwanese people do not resent the Japanese, Chinese people do. This can not only be proven by speaking to the Taiwanese who lived through the Japanese colonial times but also from last year’s Taiwanese donation to Japanese earthquake relief efforts (90% from the people, unlike aid to the Si-Chuan earthquake where most of the money came from the ROC government and Taiwanese corporations).

    Also, please do not accuse democracy as an ineffective mean to resolve the cross-strait issue. Please note that the cross-strait issue has not been resolve through democratic process because we have people like the KMT supporters in Taiwan who refuse to let go of the Chinese idea of nationalism & unification, AND an authoritarian state across the strait pointing missiles at the island.

    Anyways, I will say no more. One favor though before I end my last reply. Please please please stop pretending that you are neutral. I do not ask you to admit that you are pan-blue as it is self-evident and I have already sufficiently explained why you are pan-blue with the above, but please stop any further pretense. There is a lot of misunderstanding and misinformation you have about the Taiwanese history, society, and economic structure (evident in the way you construct your argument and your ignorance of the economic questions I posed to you in my previous comment. Also your accepting the allowance of the PRC’s continuous hostile influence on Taiwanese foreign policies); so please please please do further research on the island and the region if you are going to write your doctoral thesis or any writing on Taiwan or cross-strait relations as you currently lack knowledge and may unjustifiably damage the field of study on the region, the island’s international reputation and democratic development. Thank you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *