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[Opinion] Politics `By Them` `For Them`

Posted August. 04, 2001 09:25,   


A bird quickly swooped down towards an object. The hurried bird did not even recognize the hunter. The bird flew almost grazing at his forehead. What a nasty bird. Dumbfound by the bird, the hunter looked at it. The bird was settling down in the chestnut tree forest. Fixing an arrow to the bow, the hunter aimed at the bird. Then, a curious sight appeared. A cicada was enjoying itself sitting under the shadow of tree branches. Right next to the cicada, a mantis was walking tiptoe to catch and eat the cicada. The bird found the mantis, and then, hurriedly swooped down towards the mantis. The mantis was so absorbed in the cicada, it wasn`t even aware that the bird was falling down on itself. ``If a person runs after an immediate profit, the person is not aware of what is going on,`` the hunter murmured and put down his bow. When the hunter was moving away from the chestnut tree forest, the hunter heard the hurling words of thunder. A forest keeper who was watching the hunter entering the forest yelled at him, mistaking him as a night thief. The hunter was not aware that the forest keeper was staring at him because he was busy chasing the bird.

This is a well-known story of Dangrangbaksun (A mantis watches for a chance to catch a cicada) in Chuang-Tzu`s Mountain and Tree. The hunter was Chuang-Tzu himself. Having been awakened, it was told that Chuang-Tzu did not come out for three months after this incident, reproaching himself who `has forgotten about clear water while looking at contaminated water.``

Watching the political circles, which run at full speed toward their own goal without realizing that others talk about them with contempt, I think about a story of Chuang-Tzu. For example, while people suffer flood disaster in this hot summer, the Millennium Democratic Party (MDP) mobilized the mass and held a speech meeting under the name of national information meeting. Of course, it is said that the ruling party fought back the Grand National Party, which `instigated` through the outdoor rally.

From my own viewpoint, two parties do not seem to be aware of the danger because they are too absorbed in catching a mantis or a cicada. What can the opposition party, through a lecture meeting on the current situation, and the ruling party, through the meeting on the national information, inform, and to whom can they appeal in this highly advanced Internet age? It is only pitiable that they spent money on renting buses for the mobilization of people and the meetings ended up as their own parties while reproaching `other`.

Once there was the time when the mass and the poll were manipulated, while people were mobilized at the white sandy beach of Han River or Jangchungdan Park. This was possible because the communication of information was limited and no other setting for the political discourse was available. However, people know the `current situation` better through newspapers, media, and Internet, and they are rather concerned about politicians who are dull of their senses on the current situation.

People know more about the government-ruling party`s qualification and capability of national administration than the politicians. People can fully understand even if politicians do not explain the information through microphone. Moreover, not many people are likely to be convinced by the ruling party`s highest ranking officials, even if they try to appease. Politicians should realize that the fact that they regarded people as the object of the lecture meetings on the current situation and the target of the information campaign is to show that they are ignorant of the world.

Although they cry out for the nation and people at the rally, the rallies are simply competition between `bad politics` by them for them. The rally at Soowon yesterday was told that it was simply an indignation meeting targeting the leader of the opposition party. `Negative competition`, which aims at winning over other side by gaining the less loss and less blame than other side, is our politics.

As politicians cling to a small immediate profit, wily politicians have appeared. They tend to think that in order for the opposition party to take over the power, they should move around the conservative and the reform line according to the political tendency. This situation remind me of Einstein`s lamentation; ``Although knowledge, as a means or tool, makes one to have a sharp eye, knowledge is a blind eye in terms of the goal or value.``

Politics, which has a quick eye for profit and bickers against each other, is dangerous. Shouldn`t we realize that while our politics is absorbed in either cicada or mantis, economic problems are erupting, and the U.S., Japan, and China are aiming at us with their bows?

Kim Chung-Shik