Coming up next: August 30th protest against Ma Ying-jeou in Taiwan
After the demonstration on 9th August, Taiwanese are going to gather on the streets again to demonstrate how dissatisfied they are with Ma Ying-jeou. On 30th August, exactly 100 days after Ma was sworn in, people from all over the country are going to march through the capital and gather outside the Presidential Office to protest against Ma’s China-leaning policies and lack of real commitments to deal with economic issues. So far, tens of thousands of people have expressed their wishes to attend and many more may simply turn up on the day.
Major media have not mentioned any of Ma’s damaging economic policies and attributed all of Ma’s failures to the ‘global economy’. They have also hailed the ‘improvements’ in the relation between China and Taiwan without acknowledging the fact that China has not only increased the number of missiles aiming at Taiwan since Ma took office but also stitched Taiwan up during the Olympics and continued to prevent Taiwan participating in UN agencies. Here is an example. This article also claimed that many core ‘DPP’ supporters oppose Ma’s agenda. Well, Ma’s approval rating is only 37% and his dissatisfaction is 57%. Furthermore, 68% of people expect Ma to improve relation with China without compromising our sovereignty and 52% people think that the government should exercise more control on Taiwanese investors in China. The DPP’s current support level is barely 20%, it is obvious that not only ‘DPP’ supporters are unhappy with it.
On 14th August, Former President Chen had to admit that his wife has kept leftover of campaign funds and wired them overseas. Keeping campaign leftover was NOT illegal until 2004 but what Chen did wrong was failing to honestly declare the exact amount of donations and spending. Although it was not illegal and there has not been evidence to show that the funds in his accounts came from illegal sources, the political ethics are indeed questionable. However, since his admission, the KMT has leaked confidential information from the government and the Prosecutors Office, manipulated the media to spread rumours about Chen’s family and reduce the August 30 demonstration to a show of support for Chen, hoping to put off potential protesters (I’ll write about their ‘strategies’ on this in future). This ‘support for Chen’ claim is totally untrue and a completely ‘below the belt’ strategy to save Ma from the embarrassment.
Taiwan Society, the organiser, started organising it and made their announcement in July, long before Chen’s admission. In their press conference in July, they made it clear that the aims of the demonstration would be: ‘saving our economy’ and ‘defending our sovereignty’. Here is the link to their latest press release. The title says ‘100 days – Outcry from the people: sovereignty, economy and transparency’, which I consider self-explanatory in terms of their main aims.
Dr. Jerome F. Keating did a good job talking about this protest in this article. He explained why Taiwanese have been unhappy with Ma.