The following statement was released on March 18th, declaring the occupation of the Legislative Yuan. The original Chinese language text can be seen here.
We do not hope that ten years from now, Taiwanese young people will still live 22K lives! We believe that Taiwan should be a paradise where young people can pursue their entrepreneurial dreams to open a coffee shop, to start a company, to rely on one’s self to work hard, make a living, and be one’s one boss.
According to scholars’ analyses of the effects of the CSSTA, although the government claims that Taiwan will only open up 64 service industry sectors to China, these 64 sectors include thousands of industries ranging from grocery stores, bakeries, stationery stores, hair salons, the advertising industry, our food industry, and care for the elderly.
In the future, Taiwan’s micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises, will confront abundant funds and the large-scale model of Chinese capital coming to Taiwan, No matter whether you are a white collar worker, farmer, worker, or businessman, everyone will be faced with this threat. Apart from that this will make it hard to preserve personal livelihood, Taiwan’s open access to and use of the Internet, freedom of press, and freedom of publishing will be limited, leading to a serious threat to our freedom of speech.
In opposing the CSSTA, this is not because of the view that because the CSSTA is from China that it must be opposed. The biggest problem with the CSSTA is that under conditions of free trade, big capital reaps the most benefits, with no limitations on the actions of big business, and big capital is able to expand overseas across the straits, which would hurts small local business owners in Taiwan. Our paradise for small and medium size businesses would be taken over piece by piece. Fundamentally, the CSSTA is like the WTO, FTA, and TPP; these agreements between countries remove the protections that nations have for their residents. With regard to the CSSTA, no matter whether pro-independence or pro-unification, pan-Blue or pan-Green, a minority of capitalists will be allowed to devour small farmers, small workers, small businesses, and this will be the harsh existential problem confronted by Taiwanese young people.
We strongly oppose this, as well as Ma Ying-Jeou (馬英九) allowing a small minority to control government and the legislature, use forceful means to push through the CSSTA and sell out Taiwan’s future. On March 17th, KMT legislator Chang Ching-Chung (張慶忠) forcefully took the microphone in the middle of chaos in the Legislative Yuan and in 30 seconds declared that the meeting had come to a resolution, “With the presence of 52 members of legislature present in the meeting, this has met the legal requirements to begin the meeting, the discussion of this item. The CSSTA has already met the three month requirement, as a result the oversight of the bill has been completed, and has been sent to the Legislative Yuan to be discussed, the meeting is now over.” With no compunctions whatsoever, Chang shrugged off the people’s right to oversight. That the KMT could in this way force through something which would influence Taiwan’s young people in this way, as well as all of Taiwan’s people, without any oversight from the legislature, and influence Taiwan’s economy in this way, and conducts business in this way. Taiwan cannot continue with forceful means like this in the future.
We have to strongly emphasize, it is not that we are not afraid of confronting challenges, or that we are a group of young people who are not willing to face competition, but we are only not willing to confront this kind of unequal competition, and we are not willing to see our future lives in the hands of a minority regime of industrialists and big business. We are not willing for our work to be controlled by big business and big capitalists; we have to take control of our future and we have to have a environment with the opportunities for young people to have equal development and competition.
Photo credit: othreeFlickr/CC
Young friends, these large corporations have built cross-strait ties between governments and big business. They could at any time give up on Taiwan, and switch to cheaper priced labor elsewhere, and, like a vampire, having drank the sweat and blood of young people; beginning to look for the flesh and blood of the young people of another country to feed on. Taiwanese young people today: Taiwan is the land we live on, which we rely on to live. To limit these unjust and unfair trade agreements, to restrain this oppressive system, and this political party that tramples our rights, please stand together with us, and we can stand up to protect our Taiwan
Young People’s Demands
- We represent the people taking back the Legislative Yuan
- The opposition party should join us
- Ma Ying-Jeou, come to the Legislative Yuan to respond to our demands