The author, Bert Lim, is president and founding member of the World Economics Society, a Taiwan-based think-tank whose existence stretches back to the martial-law era (1974), and has written rather more sane articles for publications including the broadly pro-independence Taipei Times, however this piece reflects simply a deluded and hyperbolic mind-set. The Sunflower Movement, at most, was a student demo that managed to temporarily occupy a few government buildings in Taipei through what appears to have been the typically bad policing of the R.O.C. police force, and which was then rightly removed, albeit in a heavy-handed fashion that is also typical of the police in Taiwan.
A simple student demonstration cannot jeopardise the system of law and order in a democratic country, and there is no sign that Taiwan is an more or less of a country under the rule of law this year than it was last year. Students occupying the legislature cannot be said to have strengthened that legislature. There is no sign that the separation of powers, a separation that simply did not exist under the Chiangs who controlled all arms of the state, is under significant threat. Taiwanese society is, depressingly, neither more or less divided than it was at the start of this year though the response to the occupation obviously exposed that division. The R.O.C. exists as a state only at this point, and has lacked any real national identity now, at least one distinct to Taiwan, for more than a decade now. The Taiwanese economy is not really threatened by this occupation, though the services treaty it protested against might bring some minor benefits to the economy.
Meeting this kind of extreme rhetoric point-by-point almost seems pointless given the way it seems to spring up all the time in political discussion in Taiwanese discussion. The best response to this kind of hyperbole is simply to ask the question that Ma Yingjiu posed in response to a question from the Taipei Times back in 2009:
Taipei Times: Do you think Taiwan is a normal country?Whatever you may think of Taiwan's democratically-elected president now, he was undoubtedly right then. Taiwan remains an essentially stable, law-abiding, and above all, normal country, albeit one living under the threat of invasion.
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九): The Taiwanese people elect their own president and legislature and govern themselves. Do you think that is normal or not normal?
[Picture: Former Taiwanese dictator Chiang Kai-Shek takes the salute at the Double-Ten parade in Taipei in 1966. Via Wiki]