Ko Wen-je


#141

that’s why the entire hukou system also needs to go.


#142

Yes it’s intimately connected. I’m worried I have to say, Taiwan’s demographics are brutal, the pension and tax system is also a massive pyramid scheme, this place is in big trouble within a decade or two. MJ’s govt ring fenced the civil servants pensions but the other folk are being thrown under a bus as their laobao has not been ring fenced!
I come from a semi bankrupt country but the future is much brighter than here due to a more flexible society and better Demographcs.
One of the only reasons I stay here now is that it’s cheap as hell to rent and fairly cheap to live so one can save in a decent salary (apart from the shit state of cities in China), but seriously it sucks to be a regular drone worker here and then expected to look after your parents and pay mega bucks for a concrete box.


#143

I know. As much as I love Taiwan I am ever grateful fate intervened to get me out of there.


#144

It’s not the worst place by a large margin, but I think that as a place for my kids to ultimately prosper its a poor choice for many reasons long term. Everything is set up for asset owners and civil servants to keep extracting their rent long term, don’t see that changing and it’s turning into an old folks home like Japan!


#145

OK, here is what I am doing. Making my money, salting them away overseas, renting a house, doing with the kids what I do with the money, IE send them away once I can. I would neither take kids through college here, nor buy a house, at least with the market being what it is.

Something would have to radically change before I would contemplate doing either of the things I refrain from now.

Also, if I wound up not making enough money to be able to afford this, I would relocate tomorrow.


#146

If nothing else, in the Republic of China, the people directly elect their own president/head of state. You can’t say that of many other places. From what little I’ve seen, many of your grievances would appear to me to be more cultural than political.


#147

The terrible hokou system and how everything is needlessly tied up with it isn’t cultural, it’s political. How there hasn’t been any real land reforms since the days when Lee Tenghui was still the head of Taiwan province also isn’t cultural, it’s political. How roadside businesses are hogging the sidewalks as if they own it, or how there aren’t regulations mandating businesses to provide a certain numbers of parking spaces for a portion of their seats, these aren’t cultural, it’s political. The problem frankly is with a permanent majority party in the legislature unwilling to make things right and could careless about Taiwan’s living conditions.


#148

In what way do you believe Taiwan’s living conditions should improve? The people there seem fine with how their conditions are and when they aren’t, they protest like with the occupation of the legislature where the people got what they wanted and with the nuclear plant where the people got what they wanted. Sure, there are issues with land, but the citizens get what they want for the most part. Nobody gets 100% of everything they want in a democracy.


#149

The terrible hokou system and how everything is needlessly tied up with it isn’t cultural, it’s political. How there hasn’t been any real land reforms since the days when Lee Tenghui was still the head of Taiwan province also isn’t cultural, it’s political. How roadside businesses are hogging the sidewalks as if they own it, or how there aren’t regulations mandating businesses to provide a certain numbers of parking spaces for a portion of their seats, these aren’t cultural, it’s political. The problem frankly is with a permanent majority party in the legislature unwilling to make things right and could careless about Taiwan’s living conditions.[/quote]

There wouldn’t be a small business owner in Taiwan if they had to pay for land to provide parking for their establishment.


#150

[quote=“Taiwanguy”]
There wouldn’t be a small business owner in Taiwan if they had to pay for land to provide parking for their establishment.[/quote]

I’ve been noticing with the way prices are being jacked up, buying Ruwei would sometimes cost more than eating at McDonald’s, yet new McDonald’s around Taiwan have parking spaces. Providing parking wouldn’t be a problem if it is within the building regulation. Businesses in close vicinity can also rent a parking lot together.


#151

[quote=“hansioux”][quote=“Taiwanguy”]
There wouldn’t be a small business owner in Taiwan if they had to pay for land to provide parking for their establishment.[/quote]

I’ve been noticing with the way prices are being jacked up, buying Ruwei would sometimes cost more than eating at McDonald’s, yet new McDonald’s around Taiwan have parking spaces. Providing parking wouldn’t be a problem if it is within the building regulation. Businesses in close vicinity can also rent a parking lot together.[/quote]

I have no idea what your point is with McDonald’s and ruwei (what’s ruwei?..滷味?..if so, yeah, it’s usually more expensive than McDonald’s). The price of goods has nothing at all to do with profitability. Buying a refrigerator costs a heck of a lot more than a meal at McDonald’s, but that doesn’t mean a refrigerator shop is a better financial position to afford land for parking.

Most businesses are struggling to make ends meet as it is. If purchasing or renting parking space was suddenly a requirement for consumer business ownership, a large portion of the small businesses in Taiwan would close within weeks.


#152

[quote=“hansioux”]
The terrible hukou system and how everything is needlessly tied up with it…[/quote]

Are you mistaking Taiwan for mainland China? What big issue do you have with “the terrible hukou system” in Taiwan? In Taiwan you can change your hukou location at the drop of a hat. I’ve done so numerous times - takes about 10 minutes.

In mainland China it’s a different situation, where you are married to your hukou and you can’t change it without (difficult to obtain) permission. Without it, you can’t legally rent/buy a house, hold a job or send your kids to a local school. China also has the concept of a danwei 单位 (“work unit”) which holds additional powers to control your life, though possibly it’s more relaxed now than it used to be when I was there in the 1990s. Back then, if you wanted to get married or divorced, you needed the danwei’s permission.

In the USA, there is no hukou, but in many states failure to report your new residence (for your driver’s license) is a criminal offense that carries all sorts of draconian penalties. Sending your kids to a school district that is outside where your driver’s license or voter registration (hukou?) lies is a felony.

Could you ever imagine the above happening in Taiwan?


#153

You can’t change the hukou at the drop of a hat, it’s a laborious and expensive process that often involves purchasing property or paying people or begging people to put individuals on different hukou. It’s also a problem for many individuals who can’t access social welfare because they are classed as a family unit and having assets, when oftentimes they have no direct assets or income themselves! Many many people cannot access to social welfare because of this.

The hukou system drives up property prices by linking property ownership with legal rights and local welfare rights. It also stops millions of Taiwanese voting in the area they are long term residents of…just because they cannot afford to purchase a property in that area! It actively discriminates against poor people and younger people who are more mobile and who often are required to work in a different place than where they grew up. The KMT will never change the hukou system
because of this.


#154

[quote=“Dog’s_Breakfast”][quote=“hansioux”]
The terrible hukou system and how everything is needlessly tied up with it…[/quote]

Are you mistaking Taiwan for mainland China? What big issue do you have with “the terrible hukou system” in Taiwan? In Taiwan you can change your hukou location at the drop of a hat. I’ve done so numerous times - takes about 10 minutes.
[/quote]

Yes, you can change your hukou if you find taking time off work and lining up at a government office somehow a meaningful use of time. Which would be ok if things like which school your children can go to, or keeping farmland in your family, or voting aren’t tied up with it.

That’s the reason why people need to “return home” to vote. Why? Why not vote where you live, where policies make an impact on your daily life, instead of your “home” where you spend less than 2 weeks per year, and impact the lives of people living there? Many people do it because it’s the only way to keep their ancestral home. Others do it to get certain social benefit. Many have their Hukou registered at places they don’t live in so their kids can go to a certain school. Some, like the Lien family, move their hukou around to avoid tax audits.

Hukou was useful when people didn’t move around. It was also an useful tool to control the movement of people. Back during the KMT dictatorship, students from the south going to study at universities in the north had to register with the government. Such system is outdated for the realities of today. Perhaps they can simply do away with tying other important systems to Hukou, but what’s the use of having hukou is nothing’s tied up with it?


#155

The hukou is not hard to change, just time consuming.


#156

It’s hard to change if you are renting. Most landlords don’t want you to register as they then have to declare your rent as income


#157

Maybe we’ve just been lucky, but whenever I’ve been to change it with my wife (both as owners and as renters) - most recently a few weeks ago - it doesn’t take any more than about 10-15 minutes. Household Registration offices are open til 8pm, and we’ve never had to wait more than a couple of minutes in line. The longest part is printing / laminating the new ID card.


#158

Maybe it is because it is easier as a separate hukou. But most hukos are done as a family unit. None of my neighbors -with the exception of a couple of the retired government employees,- have hukos in Xindian, even the owners, or renters like me -over 10 years in the same home. They have the hukou in Yilan, Miaoli, Tainan, etc. where they families originated from. The people who have the hukou of our address do not live there -I am under strict orders to refuse entry/info of who lives where, but I guess it has to do mostly with taxes. I cannot see how easy it can be if most workers here cannot even take off an afternoon to do this procedure.


#159

Even taking herself off her family’s one and onto our own was a simple procedure.

I wonder how many just don’t bother trying because they think it’ll be too hard. When we asked landlords about it, there was never any hesitation giving the required documents. In the 6 or so years we’ve been married, the hukou has been changed 4-5 times.


#160

I have heard it is difficult to get landlords to agree placement of hukou in their properties…taxes I guess…

Is it possible to gain your own hukou without property here as a foreigner?