I’m starting this thread as we approach the November 26, 2022 municipal elections in Taiwan.
There’s already a dedicated Hou You-yi “love 'im or Hate 'im” thread, so this is not about specific personalities as such, but instead is an open thread to keep track of developments over the governance of our cities and counties.
The DPP has started things off by announcing that current Hsinchu City Mayor Lin Chih-chien (林智堅), who is now finishing his second and final term, will vie for the Taoyuan position. Lin’s been a nice surprise in Hsinchu as the first and only DPP mayor to win back-to-back elections. It’s unambiguous to me that he’s the best mayor that city has had since the 1990s. Will he have a chance to try to work his magic on Taoyuan’s damaged sprawing mess?
Think most of us here saw it coming half a year or more ago.
Maybe that’s why he expanded weekly arrivals to 40,000 and no PCR test for citizens/residents.
The Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) Electoral Strategy Committee yesterday recommended that the party recruit Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) to run for Taipei mayor and former minister of transportation and communications Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) to run for New Taipei City mayor in the local elections in November.
President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), who doubles as the DPP’s chairperson, yesterday said that she looked forward to seeing Chen and Lin fighting together to win the elections “with the goal of creating better cities and a better metropolitan area.”
Chen yesterday issued a statement to thank Tsai and the committee for their trust, adding that he would do his best to take on the mission the party has given him.
There are a significant number of people who worship at his feet and/or will vote for any candidate the DPP puts forward. Taiwanese politics has always been a bit like that, but I’m amazed that there are still people who will vote for a party that - at best - has done nothing useful for the country, and in the case of CSC in particular has played fast and loose with the law for his own personal aggrandizement and caused immense damage in the process. But that’s the clownworld we live in.
Thing is, I don’t think there are enough people who will vote for him to actually get him the job. So I’m interested to see what sort of plan they come up with to make it happen; I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he “wins”.
It’s very interesting how human psychology and our perceptions of time factor into this. As a people, we’re getting less and less patient, with shorter attention spans. This became clear to me when I watched the amazing Taiwanese environmental film The Age of Awakening, which showed how back in the 1980s folks in different parts of Taiwan staged protests for something like 18 months to get companies to stop damaging their neighrbourhoods. I feel nowadays we’d be lucky to get 18 days—and maybe 18 hours . . .
In any case the problem here is CSC specifically. I don’t quite know how to put into words what an awful human being that guy is. The fact that the DPP support him (and have supported him for two years) suggests a level of cynicism and corruption that would be hard to beat.
Running a city is difficult. Why can’t we have someone who has some actual experience and competence in such matters?
No, because he’d probably sue me. That’s the sort of awful human being he is. His willingness to go after people who speak out against his policies - I think 100+ cases went to court, as well as a personal one for libel - has had a chilling effect on democracy in general.