September, As the World Turns in Taiwan: Yeh Ching-chuan 2009

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Saturday September 05, by Jerome F. Keating Ph.D.

Typhoon Morakot and the Dalai Lama's subsequent visit were not the only newsworthy items happening recently in Taiwan. In Hualien, the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) held its primary and former Department of Health Minister, Yeh Ching-chuan was left as a clear loser. While some jokingly expressed the thought that "it couldn't have happened to a nicer weasel," others pondered what it might be saying politically.

Was it a rejection of Ma, since Yeh was one of his favored sycophant candidates? Were the voters finally developing a sense of picking whom they felt was the best candidate for them and not just accepting what was directed from on high?

Yeh was known for participating in fighting the SARS epidemic when it struck Taiwan though he was never one of those sequestered in the hospitals. That was years back and others remembered his more recent sham performance at the World Health Assembly. There he tried to convince people he "loved" Taiwan and was one of its loyal adherents though he cared little whether it be listed as a province of China or not. Others were suspicious why the "Ma acclaimed" hero of the SARS battle was leaving his post as Minister of Health to enter a political primary at the very time that he personally admitted the H1N1 virus was spreading like wildfire.

What's your thought? Could it not have happened to a nicer weasel? At least after losing Yeh said he would not come limping back to the Department of Health. As the world turns in Taiwan, who knows where he will turn up next?