Be reasonable

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Be reasonable

War clouds are gathering over the National Assembly just when it should be working hard to pass bills to overcome the economic crisis. The National Assembly must start evaluating bills from this week. This process, which establishes laws that govern administrative affairs, must be handled with care.

The main opposition Democratic Party has released a list of bills that it wants lawmakers to block. The list includes nearly all major bills that the administration and the ruling party have submitted. This reveals the opposition party’s determination to hinder the government’s handling of state affairs.

Major bills tend to produce controversies and debate. When enacted, they reflect the new administration’s philosophy on how to govern the country, and are bound to be different from the previous administration’s.

It is therefore quite natural for the Democratic Party, which was the ruling party during the previous administration, to have different views. But they intend to oppose nearly all the bills and their hard-line attitude is simply old-fashioned.

Looking at the Democratic Party’s so-called “bad bills” list can almost convince one they are so appalling that they must be prevented from becoming law. The “bad acts” are categorized into “acts to monitor the people,” “acts to divide the people” and “acts to lower taxes for the rich.” Who would support bills with such names?

Careful examination reveals that these categories are misleading. Bills to deregulate development in the metropolitan area and other related bills are considered acts that divide the people. These bills should be passed as soon as possible in order to overcome the economic crisis and create more jobs. The Democratic Party’s rationale for opposing the free trade agreement with the United States is weak. The trade deal was signed when the party was in power. It now opposes the pact just because it has become the opposition party. Punitive and unreasonable clauses in the composite real estate tax must be corrected as well.

The Democratic Party can criticize the ruling party’s bills and present alternatives. But the opposition party should not call the government’s major bills bad laws and oppose them wholesale.

The Lee Myung-bak administration was formed in accordance with the law and this regular session of the National Assembly is a forum for it to present its philosophy on governing the state. The Democratic Party must give the new administration a chance.
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