Talk at Freddy Lim’s Rally, Longshan Temple: Next Generation, Party Assets, Collaboration and Future

Clip by SocREC 社會記錄頻道@梁日明.

Longshan Temple, 14 January 2016.

(The talk is all in Taiwanese.)

Thank you. Tonight, Báng-kah (Wanhua)’s sky is very musical.

Do you know what politics and music have in common?

What they have in common is that neither should be out of tune.

What is out of tune [in politics]? If an elected representative doesn’t represent people’s will, that is out of tune… For example, a lot of KMT legislators support nuclear power when people are against it. Regarding the service trade pact, they also stood completely opposite of the people. However, they were still legislators when they didn’t represent people’s views. As a result, the public had to take to the streets. However, the majority of the public had to work, especially when the wages were so low, and earned a living. In the end, young people went ahead. All in all, the Sunflower Movement was the result of legislators failing to represent majority opinion… They now label those young people as lacking understanding and consideration. This, again, is going against the public. I’m not saying that Lin Yu-fang should not be elected due to his age… He should not be elected because he doesn’t represent public opinion anymore.

We should give young people hope. Freddy Lim represents the future and hope. If young people don’t have hope and a party doesn’t have the support of young people, then the party doesn’t have any future because we all get old and pass on. Like myself, I’m also getting old. When I first started [my political career], I was about Freddy’s age. When I was protesting [against the martial law] here in Longshan temple, I was the same age as him… As we get older, we pass the baton to the next generation and so on. This is where Taiwan’s endless strength comes from.

If young people in a country lack hope and cohesion, the country doesn’t have a future. Therefore, this election will determine our future. In the past, it was extremely difficult [for non-KMT] to have a majority in the parliament… but it is possible this time. The DPP and other progressive forces together may have the majority. So we must not let this opportunity go. When we don’t have majority, the KMT usually get their own way. For example, we can’t get the KMT to return improper party assets [to the people] because the law would never pass. But it’s now possible.

I often talk about party assets because a lot of people don’t have concrete ideas about what they are. I pointed out a few examples on Zhongshan North Road in another rally the other day. Around Section 4 stood the Grand Hotel, which used to be a shrine in the Japanese time. How did a shrine become a hotel? If we move south to the Ambassador Hotel, do you know what it used to be? Another shrine. How did it become a private property? If we go a bit further and turn right, there it is: Shin Kong Mitsukoshi Department Store, the Taipei Nanxi store. It used to be the male students’ dormitory of the National Taiwan University Medical School. After the Japanese left, a lot of buildings and properties were left unattended. After a while, those properties became the KMT’s or KMT senior officials’. If we move towards the Presidential Office, the Chang Yung-Fa Foundation HQ at the other end of the road used to belong to the KMT. How did it come into the KMT’s possession? We don’t know because it was the Navy Command HQ in the Japanese time.

When the Japanese left Taiwan [after WWII], each person could only take up to JPY 1000 back to Japan. They had to leave all the savings, properties, and shares behind. Who took those in the end? Mostly the KMT, their officials or associates. They used to use ropes to encircle properties they wanted and whatever was within the circles became theirs. Lucky their ropes weren’t long enough. Otherwise, your home or my home could have become theirs, too. [The ownership] of all of those properties had to be returned because they belong to all the Taiwanese. According to Japan’s Ministry of Welfare statistics, the value of the assets left by the Japanese was JPY 1.3 trillion. Can you imagine how much they would be worth now? Those assets should be shared by the Taiwanese and used to improve our economy and lives. Therefore, we should have new blood in the parliament because they have no baggage. This puts them in a better position to tackle this problem.

Freddy Lim is new [in politics]. There are two types of new blood. The first one includes those who have made significant contribution to the society. E.g. Freddy was Director of Youth Department in my 2008 presidential election campaign*. His band, Chthonic, is well known internationally, raises awareness and gains dignity for Taiwan. The other type is like the KMT candidate in Zhongshan District. We ask what makes him a good candidate. He could probably only come up with ‘my great grandfather was Chiang Kai-shek.’ We ask what contribution he has made to Taiwan. The answer might be ‘my grandfather was Chiang Ching-kuo’. We ask again whether there’s anything, anything at all that he has contributed. He might say ‘my father was Chiang Hsiao-yen’. He now seems to be a bit anxious [about his chance to win]. He went to worship his grandfather yesterday and prayed for his grandfather’s blessing. This seems wrong. If priviledge can be passed down from one generation to the next in a family, how many generations are we going to allow this family? If these talented individuals in front of us cannot succeed, where is Taiwan’s future? So we are here to ask for your support.

Freddy and I are in different parties. I belong to the DPP. However, the DPP wants to build a new culture in the capital city where different parties can collaborate for Taiwan’s future. Sometimes, when I campaign for non-DPP candidates, people would kindly remind me who has publicly criticised me before. (Freddy: Not me. Frank: No, not you.) I always say that it doesn’t matter. It’s not as important as Taiwan. Sometimes, we have to let go of the past in order to embrace the future…

Last year, we elected Ko Wen-je. That was the start of this new culture, as the DPP didn’t nominate a candidate. As a result, the KMT lost. This time, we are doing the same… If we can work together, we can better defend ourselves from external pressure. If we fight among ourselves all the time, we will fall apart without China’s intervention. In this experiment, we are trying to get all the pro-Taiwan forces together to protect Taiwan and fight for Taiwan’s future. If you support Freddy Lim, that will help this experiment succeed.

I have been campaigning in a lot of places, attending rallies, canvassing on foot or by car. In the last couple, I had to play the ocarina and sing along. I’ve lost my voice and feel I’m coming down with something. But it is OK. We have one more day to go tomorrow. As we succeed the day after, that will be the time to nurse a cold… As an elderly citizen, I still want to contribute to the society and am happy to make some sacrifice for Taiwan. I’m here to make a humble request. Please support Freddy Lim. No. 6 Freddy Lim.

*Freddy and Fire EX’s work in the 2008 campaign

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About Frank Hsieh

Former Premier, Former Kaohsiung Mayor 前行政院長、前高雄市長
本篇發表於 Activities 活動/行程, Elections 大選, Public talks 演講, Transitional justice 轉型正義。將永久鏈結加入書籤。

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