Surf Taiwan News, Browse the World »
 
James Soong: I have five PhDs who don’t understand CSSTA
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-05-13 10:40 AM
PFP Chairman James Soong was lavish Monday in his criticism of the Ma government and its approach to negotiations on the Cross-Strait Service Trade Agreement (CSSTA). He deigned to use the term "black box" in describing the KMT’s methods, saying he would prefer to use somewhat stronger language. Soong noted that he has five PhDs on his staff and none of them understand the contents of CSSTA. This shows there are basic communication flaws behind the document, he said, and they are not problems with two-way communication; rather, they are problems with the basic aims of the negotiators. Soong said CSSTA seems largely designed to benefit a few people in Taiwan at the expense of everyone else.

Soong mused about how Ma would make it through the remaining two years of his second term without convening a constitutional conference or a general meeting of ruling party leaders. He noted that political and social issues in Taiwan are becoming increasingly stressful and in need of resolution, saying that "public opinion in Taiwan is like a pendulum, you must not underestimate the civic consciousness of Taiwan." He cautioned that anyone who wants to be a leader must be able to prioritize what needs to be done first, adding that he hopes authorities can hear the "sound of the wind and the rain grumbling."

Asked why he had maintained such a low profile during the student movement of March and April, Soong said he did not want to be a distraction from the protesters’ message. He explained that "when a politician tries to go there, people always think it is to find some personal gain."

Soong also revealed a "two-decades old secret," saying that during the Wild Lilies student movement in 1990, he was charged with communicating with students in the protest, and went to the family residence of Huang Hsin-chieh on the afternoon of March 19 to talk with Huang. When Huang led the students to the Presidential Office on March 16 he had been carried out by security forces, Soong explained, and he took responsibility for maintaining contact with Huang and other leaders. Then once the presidential elections were over on March 21, President-elect Lee Teng-hui invited Huang to come in and discuss policy, eventually convening a National Conference on issues raised in the student movement. "That,” said Soong, “was communication."

Asked if he felt that there is a gap between China’s perception of public opinion in Taiwan and what the people really feel, Soong noted that China is now in contact with the people of Taiwan at many different levels. Still, he said, being in contact with all sectors of society is not the same as understanding what they are thinking. He stressed that the people of Taiwan want to maintain the island’s independent economy and political democracy, but now they cannot even engage independently in international activities like the Olympics; At the same time, he added, the fact that Taiwan might not have the ability to successfully defend itself in a direct military confrontation does not mean that the people are ready to show the white flag.

HOME |  WORLD |  Politics |  Business |  Sports |  Lifestyle |  TAIWAN |  Technology |  Health |  SUPPLEMENT |  Society |  OPINION
  • Taiwan News  ©  2014 All Rights Reserved.