Saturday, November 28, 2009

Sejong City and the beauty of lameduckhood

For most observers, the future of Korea's next capital, Sejong Special Autonomous City, has never looked bright. And when LEE Myung-bak hired, as his new Prime Minister, a fierce oponent to the project, common sense was bound to win over utopia (see "Sejong City").

Chances were CHUNG Un-chan would take all the burden for the change of plans, the President simply accepting his recommendations. Politics as usual.

But no. The Bulldozer, in this bluntest style, did what few politicians dare do in public, and even fewer on prime time TV : he said yes, I agreed with the project, but only to get the votes from Chungcheongnam-do people. Sorry, but now I must do what's good for the country and pull the plug.

Needless to say Chungcheongnam-do voters are not pleased by this honesty. They will have to do with a B Plan yet to be determined.

Sejong City will exist, probably refocused on education and research, and Seoul will remain the capital of South Korea.

Such is the beauty of lameduckhood in Korea : a President serves only one term and is not politically binded. His party ? A one shot disposable vehicule he dumps into deep seas as soon as the satellite has reached its orbit.


Seoul Village 2009

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