[EDITORIALS]Roh’s rose-colored viewsPresident Roh Moo-hyun said on Thursday, “[Since I assumed the presidency] there is no area in state affairs that lags behind the level of the past or has fallen in greater danger.”
At a meeting with university presidents, Mr. Roh said, “I dare say that there is no area that has worsened, whether it be the crisis in the financial system, the North Korea nuclear crisis, the South Korea-U.S. alliance or foreign affairs in general.” He added, “As the president, I can assure you that we can avoid any problem in these areas in the coming 5 to 10 years.”
In short, he said that there is nothing to worry about since everything is going so well. But we wonder how many people would agree with Mr. Roh.
Of course, it is true, as Mr. Roh claims, that there has been no financial crisis during his administration. But it is wrong to compare the administration with its predecessor, which suffered a catastrophe between 1997 and 1998. The same applies to the North Korea nuclear issue. Although the problem started during the previous administration, the most critical point came in February when the North declared it possessed nuclear weapons. And the problem is not yet solved. As for South Korea and the United States, there has never been a time when the gap between the two has been so wide and serious. The situation has gone as far as to raise a question over the fundamentals of the alliance.
Mr. Roh only worries over the polarization of society. If polarization has deepened, the root cause is the economy. We don’t know why the president did not mention the economic sector. Try to find anyone who will say the economy is not worse off. Except for those who are in high positions in this administration, no one else would argue that. The same applies to the real estate issue.
Only a few days ago, Mr. Roh said that he had been a lame duck from the moment he was inaugurated. He proposed a coalition with the opposition since he couldn’t manage state affairs properly because of their challenges. If everything is fine, why did he call himself a lame duck and propose a coalition?
There is nothing wrong with the president keeping an optimistic attitude. The problem is alternating between optimism and pessimism every day. The president who tells people not to worry because all will go well, while everyone else feels hardship, makes us worry even more.