Tribute to the Taiwanese People – Impressions Following the Taiwanese Election (4)

Beijing based writer/blogger Dong Guangfu writes on his blog, translated by M.J.:

The entire election process is a democratic voice, fully expressing the right of democratic monitoring, the right to know and the right to participate. The candidates of both parties stand in the flesh among the visual fields of 23 million Taiwan people, they stand beneath the wary gaze of all those in the world who are watching Taiwan. All things great and small, good and bad, commendable and apprehensible, hidden and dark, must pass through the media to be under scrutiny by the people.

Democracy is not for the purpose of finding a perfect being — Even though Ma Yinjiu was elected, he still has skeletons in his closet. Democracy is for finding someone that the people trust and understand, one who dares to display the entire truth in front of all the people. Democracy is for electing someone who carries a sense of responsibility.

The two candidates have both accomplished this, each used his charisma to win the respect of the Taiwanese voters, and ever vote cast is a confirmation of trust obtained under the scrutiny of the people.

In comparison, how many officials in an authoritarian system can so unabashedly face the media, so openly expose all of themselves to the people?

And how many would publicize the origin of their assets? How many have a systematic plan that advances the welfare of the people? And how many are prepared to be responsible for the people after they are inaugurated?

One is almost ridiculously “placed” into some position; the entire process takes place in an impenetrable black-box. In comparison, democracy is precious!

Whoever is chosen, before he or she steps on the stage, the people already know every stitch of that person’s character, and strategies…and if he or she should change, then what? Next time, the people will make sure to “de-elect” the individual.

The variety in democracy are like stories seen through a glass house, open, transparent. In comparison, doing one’s business in the dark, in mutual deceit, as the people become fools — who is responsible for such wrongs?

And the officials? One may be in a position that he does not desire, forcibly appointed, an inappropriate misfit. Or, even if one willingly sought the position, the people would have no inkling of it; everything happens as if spontaneous, they cannot participate, cannot give advise, and definitely cannot monitor. I ask, how can one serve the people well?

So, if one cannot serve the people well, then he must serve himself. Thus, the motto of the authoritarian system is “Even three years of uncorrupt governance means ten thousand ounces of silver.”

In this election, the Taiwanese people chose based on their own views, confirmed with their own wisdom, decided with their own votes. To the candidates, it was a true admission and expression of personal value.

For the candidates who accepted scrutiny by the 23 million Taiwanese people, I too am respectful.

After all, facing such meticulous inspection, very few officials under the authoritarian regime can withstand the gaze of the entire world. They would worry: overseas savings might be exposed, mistress might be photographed secretly, the wad of bills in the cigarette case might be found, or perhaps a needle sized camera might be placed inside the walls of the nightclub…

The candidates of a democratic election are not afraid, if they were, they would not be in the race. If they’ve come so far, they must be able to weather the tests.

Of course, there is only one way to be tested a million times and still endure — to having nothing of the sort to hide.

Therefore, regardless of who is victorious, even before such a moment, much depends on trust. If there were a problem, met with the gaze of a thousands of pairs of eyes, it would be eliminated at the first moment…

Only one is truly free of real problems and can endure the test of the election process would be unafraid of democracy. Those with many black spots of course would fear it.

The people’s eyes are snow-bright! One who is unfortunately too familiar with these words would obviously reject democracy with a firm hand.

Read also: *Tribute to the Taiwanese People (1)
* Tribute to the Taiwanese People – Impressions Following the Taiwanese Election (2)
* Tribute to the Taiwanese People – Impressions Following the Taiwanese Election (3)

And here is the Global Voices translation piece entitled “Taiwan election stirs mainland blogsphere”

April 5, 2008 3:32 PM
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