我很喜歡 Taipei Times ，因為他的寫法和社論寫的都很鏗鏘有力，雖然有時不是很認同，但不管如何，我就是很喜歡 Taipei Times 的編排風格及文筆 …
我不太喜歡的是藍色部分，這寫法是有點誇張，似乎是說 DPP = Taiwan ！！
另外是下一篇裡面的一個字：claim ～ 因為我覺得用 seize 才是適當的用字 …
但不管如何，Taipei Times 的社論對我的寫作幫助良多 ～
EDITORIAL: Seventy days to turn things around
Sunday, Jan 13, 2008, Page 8
The results of the first elections under the new single-member district, two-vote system grant the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) new legislative powers that should unnerve advocates of Taiwanese democracy.
A combination of structural change, poor campaign strategy by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and growing dissatisfaction from voters in nominally safe DPP seats killed the party’s hopes to protect the legislature from a two-thirds majority for the KMT.
The remaining two months of President Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) term will be encumbered by a legislature that will be even more hostile to him, and this may have a powerful effect on the electability of DPP presidential candidate Frank Hsieh (謝長廷).
Changes to the electoral system did not benefit the DPP at all, instead proving a boon to the KMT with its superior organizational skills on the ground.
The interesting thing is that the DPP achieved a higher proportion of the district vote (38.17 percent) than in legislative elections four years ago, when it received 35.7 percent of the vote. Its party proportional vote was also marginally higher — at 36.91 percent. The main reasons for the KMT’s landslide victory are instead the distributive nature of the new system and how it forced KMT-aligned local factions to cooperate with one another.
Even so, the DPP’s primaries were flawed, leading to an inability to appoint appropriate and able candidates. It failed to take into account changes in the single-member system, such as this: To be elected, a candidate is now required to win a much larger number of votes — effectively 50 percent in many cases — rather than a larger minority of votes.
The tradition that the party chairman should lead the campaign and mobilize support meant that DPP candidates could not be heard as individuals in their constituencies. Add to this the fact that DPP candidates do not have the same grassroots networks as KMT candidates, and the result was several capable candidates losing by small margins.
With Chen’s resignation as DPP chairman, the party is now set for an ugly post mortem as Premier Chang Chun-hsiung (張俊雄) prepares to dissolve the Cabinet ahead
of the new legislature. Both acts will initiate major political change, but finding successors for Chen, Chang and others will be a problem in the current environment, with DPP morale set to plumb new depths. This will not contribute to stable government and may have an impact on the DPP’s presidential election prospects.
After winning the 2000 presidential election, the DPP was doing reasonably well in the face of an increasingly hostile legislature, until things took a turn for the worse with its avoidable 2004 legislative election loss, ensuring that the KMT would have the space and time to recover confidence after the inept leadership of chairman Lien Chan (連戰). The result of yesterday’s elections highlights this recovery and raises the question of whether the DPP can mount a viable presidential campaign. The only way the DPP can do this is respond quickly to the needs of the 13 percent of voters who voted for Chen in 2004 but abandoned the party yesterday.
The next 70 days will show if Hsieh is able to invoke the much-vaunted "pendulum effect" and save the DPP — and Taiwan — from a situation in which a party that privileges power and cynicism over democracy and propriety has complete control of the legislature and the executive.
Legislative elections and referendums: ANALYSIS: DPP defeated by a new electoral system: analysts
By Ko Shu-ling
Sunday, Jan 13, 2008, Page 3
By Ko Shu-ling
Sunday, Jan 13, 2008, Page 3
"Under the new electoral system, there is only one slot available in each constituency. Voters are looking for someone who can give them the best services possible and that costs money."
The nation saw a dramatic shift in power yesterday after the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) suffered a major defeat at the hands of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) in legislative elections.
While the south is traditionally considered A DPP stronghold, the party fared poorly in Kaohsiung City and Kaohsiung County and garnered just one seat in central Taiwan. The party had set a goal of capturing 35 district seats and 15 legislator-at-large seats, but ended up securing only 13 district seats and 14 at-large seats.
While opinion polls predicted a DPP loss, the extent of its defeat came as a surprise to some.
Analysts attributed the party’s failure mainly to the new electoral system, which they said put the DPP in an unfavorable position.
Chao Yung-mau (趙永茂), a political science professor at National Taiwan University, said that the KMT election machine was efficient and well-organized. It had established a closely knit network with local voting captains during its 50-year reign and had a solid support base.
The DPP, on the other hand, lacked a close connection at the local level, a majority of which is governed by the pan-blue camp, he said.
"Under the new electoral system, there is only one slot available in each constituency. Voters are looking for someone who can give them the best services possible and that costs money," he said.
The second-ballot voting system, in which voters pick the party of their choice, also puts the DPP at a disadvantage, because the biggest party benefits most from the design, Chao said.
"The DPP agreed on the new electoral system because it has its eyes set on two-party politics," he said. "It is well aware that it will take time to get rid of smaller parties and that it has to pay a price during the transitional period."
The game is pretty much set in some constituencies, such as the outlying islands, the east coast and Aboriginal seats, said Hawang Shiow-duan (黃秀端), a political science professor at Soochow University.
Another reason for the DPP’s poor showing was public displeasure with the DPP administration’s lackluster performance over the past eight years, analysts said.
Hawang said the economy was not as bad as some media outlets had portrayed, while admitting there was big room for improvement. Negative media reporting, however, took its toll and the administration was punished by voters for failing to give the economy a boost.
The DPP’s disappointing performance also showed that focusing on identity and ethnic issues no longer worked as effectively as they used to, analysts said.
While the identity issue may stir up the passion of core DPP supporters, it may scare off more moderate voters, said Wu Chin-en (吳親恩), a political researcher at Academia Sinica.
"Those issues are like a double-edged sword," he said. "They have limited effect when they become the central issue in almost every election."
Tsai Chia-hung (蔡佳泓), an associate research fellow at National Chengchi University’s Election Study Center, said that his research showed that more and more Taiwanese prefer a vague, rather than a clear, definition of identity.
In other words, more people favor being political neutral and do not want to be identified as Chinese or Taiwanese, he said.
Other factors must also be taken into account, Hawang said. They include the corruption allegations brought against President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and his family, the anti-Chen campaign calling for his resignation, soaring international oil prices and the rising prices of commodities and raw materials.
"When the public has higher expectations of the DPP, the party has to pay a price for failing their expectations," Hawang said.
With the KMT’s solid victory, analysts foresee a legislature dominated by one big party and backed by big-money donors. As it is hard for smaller parties to put bigger parties in check, the future of partisan politics looks dismal, they said.
"The KMT will be like a dinosaur and the DPP a tiger, with fiercer and uglier fights continuing between the two rival parties," Chao said.
Apart from the legislative elections, the DPP-initiated referendum to reclaim the KMT’s stolen assets also failed. Analysts were divided on the impact the failed referendum would have on the party.
Hawang said that that the defeat was a significant blow to the DPP, which seems to have exhausted all possible means to achieve its goal of retrieving the stolen assets.
As a minority in the legislature, Hawang said the DPP would continue to face a KMT boycott on any attempt to recover the assets.
The DPP will still face the same dilemma even if its presidential candidate, Frank Hsieh (謝長廷), were to win in March because the party would still be a minority in the legislature, she said.
Wu dismissed the result of the referendum as insignificant because it was part of the election campaign strategy and the topic was a "non-issue."
Legislation is required to legally reclaim the KMT’s improperly acquired assets, Wu said, and it is highly unlikely the DPP would be able to enact a law in a KMT-dominated legislature.
Wu, however, admitted that a successful referendum could have boosted the momentum for another referendum initiated by the DPP on applying to join the UN using the name Taiwan that will be held concurrently with the presidential election.
Chao said the March referendum would bear more significance and is the decisive battle.
With less than 70 days left before the presidential election, analysts said the DPP may adjust its campaign strategy to pull off a better showing in March.
Wu said Hsieh would play a more dominant role in mapping out the party’s campaign strategy in the run-up to the March poll.
Chao agreed, saying that Chen, who resigned last night as DPP chairman, would be under tremendous pressure and would have to let Hsieh play a more decisive role in the race.
Chao said he did not think Chen need to to bear responsibility for the legislative defeat, but said Hsieh could face severe criticism from party members for distancing himself from the legislative polls.
The DPP would face a tougher battle ahead if the party were split and Hsieh lost the backing of his party members, Chao said.
As the presidential election looms, it is now up to voters to decide whether they want to see the country ruled by a single party holding both the executive and legislative reins, or a split government where the administration is constantly at odds with the legislature.