[EDITORIALS]Pointless political minuet

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[EDITORIALS]Pointless political minuet

The political arena is in turbulence as politicians, blindly pursuing personal interest, switch alignments. Politicians do not mind differences of platform or policy guideline. Their only justification is: "We are against Lee Hoi-chang" -- the opposition Grand National Party's presidential candidate. The way they come together suggests that they will join hands with anyone or invite anybody as a presidential candidate, if only he can defeat Mr. Lee. The political parties, the backbone of modern politics, are degraded to mere accessories in this political ploy. The quadripartite alliance among the anti-Roh faction of the Millennium Democratic Party, Kim Jong-pil, Chung Mong-joon and Lee Han-dong is a vivid example of such a ploy. Politics is held up to ridicule for lacking principle or responsibility, deepening popular contempt.

The epicenter of recent political disarray is the MDP, until lately the ruling party. It is hard to understand the behavior of the anti-Roh faction. They abandoned Roh Moo-hyun because his chance of being elected president is low, after they had nominated him in a primary that they called an epoch-making event. The call for a unity candidate to run against Lee Hoi-chang is an attempt to decide everything by individual candidates' approval ratings. Their ultimate goal is winning the presidency.

Kim Jong-pil joined the four-party alliance after long deliberation. He should look back at his own large degree of responsibility for the errors of the current administration. He should also ponder whether the alliance with Lee Han-dong, who criticized him abusively, will be rationalized with the pretext of a coalition. Mr. Lee's candidacy without the support of a party is being called an attempt to have a free ride on the election wagon.

Mr. Chung's decision not to send a representative to the four-party coalition meeting resulted from his careful reading of people's minds. It is natural that he is concerned about being branded a candidate without a proper political platform, only eager to swell the numbers of his supporters. His image will be damaged and his approval rating may hit a headwind. The pointless realignment of politicians only 70 days before the presidential election will further disappoint voters. Political coalitions should be pursued according to political platforms and policies.
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