[EDITORIALS]Time for clarity in the GNPThe Grand National Party has wrapped up a party convention, its seventh since its founding. The convention marks the party’s new beginning following consecutive defeats in the last presidential election and in April’s National Assembly elections.
But honestly speaking, we don’t feel we should only offer congratulations and support. Looming in our minds is whether the party, as a political party, and an opposition one at that, is living up to its roles.
A convention is the biggest and most important ceremony for a party. But the public seems far from interested, and the responsibility for that lies with the party. Grand Nationals have been ambiguous in stating where they stand on important national developments, domestic politics and social issues that have emerged in the country. The party has yet to put forth any persuasive vision or ambition for the nation. Many people are questioning its viability as the alternative to the governing Uri Party.
The party is waffling on policies. The public does not know how it assesses the current national security situation and what its prescriptions are. It is not clear whether it is for the move of the capital or against it. The party is at the forefront among groups warning that the Korean economy is in trouble, but its efforts to revive the economy fall short. It doesn’t discuss the changes that will occur if it takes over power.
Perhaps the biggest problem for the party is that it still has illusions. It sincerely wants the support of young voters, so its lawmakers form rock groups and theatrical groups, and the party asks its members to wear jeans. The party has been out of power for seven years, but it seems to continuously deride the voters. Does it think that the voters voted for the party’s members to sing, dance and act in plays?
The foremost priority is to take a thorough look at itself and become a new political party. It must change from a party that once pursued power to one that addresses the public’s welfare and seriously debates the pros and cons of a policy. Constituents don’t want event-or-performance-driven politics: They want a party that genuinely worries about the country.
It is time for the party to emerge from its gray zone, and propose and carry out specific measures that will save the country. Of course, it should all be done on the assumption that the party has a solid view for the country and of itself as the No. 1 opposition party.