[EDITORIALS]Cabinet folliesIt is a pity that the former chief presidential secretary for national policy, Kim Byong-joon, was nominated as the next education minister yesterday. Mr. Kim’s actions agitated the voters in the May 31 local elections. To appoint him as the new education minister, instead of asking him to take responsibility for his earlier actions, ignores popular opinion.
Mr. Kim was the chief architect of the new administrative city and the transfer of public bodies there, for real estate policy and for tax policy. He ignored the normal flow of the market and took a hostile attitude against rich people in southern Seoul. In doing so, he created conflict among the people and brought pain and hardship to the bulk of them. He said that measures for heavy taxes are still on the way. He blamed the rich for the failure of the measures and tried to mobilize civic groups to support his ideas.
It is hard to believe that Mr. Kim, who blindly believes in egalitarian principles, will be in charge of making education policies that should be aimed at training the smart and talented young people who will be leading the country in the future. It is also questionable whether he has enough knowledge about education measures to hold the job. The Blue House said that Mr. Kim was deeply involved in devising and implementing government measures and participated in discussions with an education committee dozens of times. There are many people who have at least that amount of experience and knowledge.
In the new cabinet, at least eight ministers will have prior experience in the Roh Blue House. Prime Minister Han Myeong-sook said the president appointed people on the basis of their consistency and drive in carrying out measures. The people have already delivered their verdict on the measures that the president had been advocating, but he still hires people who share his ideas. The president wants to go his way whether the people oppose the direction or not. We wonder if he still wants to bring stability to administrative management and govern with the people’s support.
Uri Party members reportedly agree that Mr. Kim is not the right person for the position. If they think so, they should oppose the appointment at the National Assembly hearings. They should convey the party’s stance clearly and persuade the president not to appoint the wrong candidate. If the Uri Party does nothing while knowing that the cabinet changes are going the wrong way, the party is also responsible for the damage.