Sunday, January 17, 2016

Well well.

The election is over, and it appears that someone's 15 years of efforts have finally borne fruit. Delicious green fruit, and a lot of it. A few thoughts:

- I felt kind of bad for Eric Chu at the end there. His concession speech was clearly pretty well rehearsed, because he and everyone else knew how it was going to turn out. But I don't think he ever wanted to run for president (in this election), and watching him try to accept personal responsibility for the failings of his party was depressing. And speaking of his party...

- I think the popular view that the KMT is unfocused and out-of-touch is largely correct. They've been running on inertia for a long time now. But even die-hard supporters now have a hard time articulating exactly what the party stands for these days.

- BUT. Even if the KMT had it's act together, they were going to have trouble winning the presidency this time. Tsai Ing-wen's marketing was simply masterful on all media fronts - on message, emotionally moving, and visually stunning. If Tsai picks cabinet members as well as she picks advertising agencies, the country is in good hands indeed.

- The Chou Tzu-yu apology uproar. Didn't affect the presidential race, but probably pulled enough angry votes to the DPP and the New Power Party in the legislative elections. If I were conspiracy-minded, I would say that the video was intentionally filmed with that lighting and at that angle, to make it look like a North Korean forced confession. Not necessarily to influence the election in Taiwan - my bet would be someone at JYP wanted to stick a finger in China's eye.

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