Monthly Archives: March 2016

Thoughts and Reflections on Super Tuesday 3

Today’s primary results will very likely determine who the GOP presidential nominee will be (or would it?).

Despite my fear of a Donald Trump victory, he very well could be the eventual GOP nominee. For many of us, we did not see this day coming. But come to think of it, this kind of anger from a portion of the American society that Trump seemingly represents, is hardly alone. The kind of anger, feeling of marginalization, sense of betrayal and neglect by the political class, rising national sentiment/nativism, protectionism against immigrants and foreign countries, have been brewing in the Western world as of late.

All of these have been manifested in some of the elections held in the western world. We have seen that in the French and the German elections, in which right-wing political parties representing that anger have emerged as powerful political forces to be reckoned with, capable of overthrowing the political establishment from power.
Now it is coming to America, albeit with a slightly different twist.

We must be able to understand the frustration, anger, feeling of marginalization and sense of betrayal. People are fed up, a group some called the “silent majority” are fed up with and distrustful of political elites on both sides of the political aisle.

We must be able to empathize and to some extent validate those feelings. But, I do not believe venting anger by electing Donald Trump is the rational and right thing to do, simply because he talks like the ones who felt marginalized and angry, and that he doesn’t care about “political correctness” or even being correct, period. If the mass is distrustful of the political establishments, they shouldn’t find the often flip-flopping Donald that trust-worthy. They will be sorely disappointed, very soon. Donald Trump cannot address the anger of the marginalized, he is not even the right messenger.

But, people do not care, I get that. No amount of reasoning can reverse that. This time around, not even the right-wing tea-party rebels like Ted Cruz who repeatedly posed headaches to the GOP establishment is good enough, and this group of people choose Donald Trump instead.

Some said a Trump nomination (and perhaps a Trump presidency) would be a crisis for the Republican Party (and our country), other would say perhaps it could also well be a catalyst that might lead to a rebirth of the GOP, and eventually the Party will readjust and realign. We will be ok eventually. But still, there is a feeling of resignation and perhaps uneasiness over a Trump nomination and presidency on my part.

I guess we will find out tonight.

May the Lord have mercy on this land.


唐荆陵:不破楼兰终不还 —- 我只向人民和上帝上诉

今天我以全然的轻蔑,平静地迎接独裁者的攻击—-就是这假法律名义所作出的判决。在法院堂皇的大楼里,我们可以看到庄严华丽的陈设和装饰,看到衣冠俨然的政府雇员,唯独看不到法律,更看不到正义。

在二十多个月的监禁中,甚至更早在2011年我被秘密关押于番禺南大路广州市民警培训中心内和遭遇酷刑期间,我都仔细回顾和反省了自己的思想和行动—-我所致力于推进的公民不合作运动,及今天我们被定罪的一切。我更加确信了它们对于增进人类尊严与自由的价值。独裁者的这一纸判决,以及与之相伴的加诸我们和家人的痛苦和屈辱,如果其目的是迫使我们屈服或退缩,那就显然已经失败了。暴政试图以它的凶残吓倒我们,结果只是暴露了自己的虚弱,更徒然加增我对独裁专制的憎恶。我将一如既往地推动非暴力自我解放的进程,因为我的愿望是要让我的祖国获得自由。

我们之无罪,正如对我们的关押、侦查、起诉、审判之有罪一样清楚。热爱自由的人们天然是法律和秩序的维护者,他们对那些即使看似无关乎自由的法律也保持同样的敬畏,不会因遵行的不便而拒绝遵守,以免有损于那一体有效的捍卫正义和自由的法律。但是,当对政府权力及其行使的尊重和服从,意味着对人类尊严的贬损和对人权的侵害时,人们就没有义务再合作和服从,这时参与其中就可能成为罪恶的帮凶。有鉴于此,又鉴于这个所谓司法程序已经明显沦为政治迫害的工具和犯罪的遮羞布,因此我对其采取了漠然置之的态度。在开庭期间,我拒绝回答和指控有关的问题,只是我在这么做的时候,仍然尽力保持了对相关政府人员人格的尊重,以免将我对专制独裁的怒火转移到他们身上。他们是否感受到我的善意,我不得而知,至于他们是否如我一样,在这法庭上发现了正义和邪恶的斗争,就更加难为人知了。如果没有对真理的追求,以及坚持良知的勇气,一个人很难明白这一点,非暴力的微妙之处正在于此。希望我以囚徒身份所做的这一切,能够显示自由选择的可能性,并引起卷入其中的政府人员的思考。

不管怎样,总会有人坚信:就当局那些指控而言,我是有罪的。甚至无论多少雄辩都不足以改变他们的看法,何况雄辩并非我的强项。如果说持有这种看法的人全都是出于立场和利益,也是不确切的。我相信一定有人是真诚地出自他的理性和逻辑确信这一点。无论是哪一种情况,我对他们的回答是:如果你要说这是犯罪,那我将很乐意继续犯罪,正如一句法谚所言,“当不义写进了法律,抵抗就成为了义务”。

《圣经》中有话说:为义受逼迫的人有福了。今天我们被定罪,被投入监狱,与家人分离,遭受污辱和苦难,我还远不能令人信服地证明,这些逼迫何以成为我的福分,但上帝在我们身上的旨意,总有难明之处。我常常祷告,请他加给我力量,以坚守到那揭晓的一刻。我敢说,2011年在秘密监狱里,以及如今在看守所,我所度过的几乎每一个日子,都是坦然而充实的。我从未失去自己的方向。

不少热心的朋友,一直鼓励我,并建议我如果被判有罪,应上诉,以显示不屈的决心,避免给公众留下认罪服判的错误印象,这当然是十分宝贵的意见。只是我从初次得以会见律师以来,就早已反复考虑并做出决定,即无论案件的结果如何,我都将不向中共暴政下的法院上诉。就案件而言,需要寻求的是正义;就我的个人使命而言,乃是寻求自由。许多人都会同意我的看法,在本案的上诉法院,乃至中共辖下任何其它一间法院,都不会是实现正义和自由的场所。在开庭期间,我已论述了这个观点,这就好像一个人不能在暗室里丢了针,却跑到室外就着路灯去寻找一样。另外,法庭也不是为自由而战斗的中心,更不是决定性的场所,即使是在以法院为国之重器的英美法系诸国也不例外。近现代以来,不同国家的许多律师成长为伟大的自由战士,是因为他们在法庭内经历了难以想象的黑暗,而奋然投身于争取民主、捍卫人权的事业,法庭只是他们战斗的起点。在中国,法的统治之建设尚未开步,也缺乏如此传统,法律技术论的观点就很容易成为误导公众的工具。持这种观点的人试图让人们相信,凭借单纯法律技术性和职业性的努力,可以完全在中共当局所设定的框架内实现保卫人权的目标,而无视这个框架本身与人权价值普遍和深刻的对立。这就好像身陷网罗而不自知一般。

经过这一番说明,或许多少可以消除一些朋友们的担忧,希望也有助于他们理解我不上诉的决定。而我则把这篇简短的陈词,理解为向人民、向上帝的上诉。

此外,还有必要再谈谈我对中共法律及司法的总体印象。自从九八年我开始从事法律职业以来,直到如今,司法实务虽已发生了很多改变,法律体系也日益庞杂,某些方面的确有所改善,但仍远不足以改变我对这个领域的一些基本看法,即它们既没有提供基本的人权保护,也没有提供这种保护的可靠承诺。中共宪法中的确出现了一些人权条款,但是如果我们整体性地观察和理解这部宪法,就会发现,那只不过是一些粉饰而已。事实上,我一直对以宪法来称呼这个文件,有一种不舒服的感觉,而我也从不倾向于从中去寻找中国民主和人权进步事业的合法性渊源。在国民政府时期,我们的先辈经过浴血奋战,成为联合国的创始成员国之一,并参与创立了一系列充满人类崇高情操和理想的宪章,只是随即因大陆在内战中沦陷于共产主义,它们在中国大地落地生根的进程,才告中止。

九八年夏天,我取得了律师职业资格证书,有一天我特意到汕头市龙湖区法院旁听案件,以熟悉我即将从事的职业。当时法庭正在审理一宗强奸案,且快要接近尾声了。年轻的被告突然以一种几乎要哭出来的腔调说到他受到了警察的严刑拷打,连一只睾丸都被踢碎了。他还绝望地问:我还没有结婚,以后该怎么办?法官赶紧惊慌地制止他继续说下去。这一幕,正是中共司法的真正面目,直到如今,并无改变。我相信上帝并不是毫无用意地让我看到这个场景,他让我甫一进入法律职业,就不至于用一种虚假的幻象欺骗自己和误导他人,以为法律和法治已经进入了中共统治的经脉。

十年后,上海闸北公安局内,杨佳以他的奋力一击,算是对这个青年的绝望一问给出了一种答案:吾与汝偕亡的千年回响。杨佳并非我所尊崇的英雄,但即使到如今,我也没有发觉,自己有任何可以俯视他的道德优势。如果一个人没有真正体验过他们的屈辱,没有迸发过胜过杨佳的血气之勇的勇气,恐怕很难对这个问题有清晰的认识。事实上,在一个以坐稳了奴隶而自得的国度,要从专制造成的普遍怯懦中恢复健全的自由人格,勇气正是最对症的良药之一。

庆父不死,鲁难未已;专制不除,国运不昌。在人民主权被背弃六十多年后,越来越多的中国普通男女,经过他们自身艰难的历程,逐步凝聚起坚定的信念,人民必须收回自己的政权。党派专制和个人独裁,已经严重腐蚀了我们民族的精神,恐惧和欺骗支配下的人们,在怀疑和谄媚的浸染下,变得萎靡和腐朽,人们如同末日疯狂般的攫取个人利益,然后挖空心思逃离被野蛮采夺弄得千疮百孔的矿堆。在历史转折即将来临的关键时刻,中共独裁当局几年来,连续抓捕和重判进步人士,扫荡各类权益类公益NGO,2015年7月更一举秘密关押二十多位进步律师和维权人士,表明了其悍然对抗的决心。

尽管看起来双方力量对比如此悬殊,我希望 一切向往自由的人们,尤其是尚未踏足监狱这一自由战场的人们,不要在这一波攻击面前丧胆。中国古有遗训:以乱攻治者亡,以邪攻正者亡,以逆攻顺者亡。中共当局内的这一小群窃据国权的独裁专制势力,可谓正应了这句古训。他们不仁民而爱物,却执敲扑而鞭笞天下,可谓乱;奉西方共产主义之异端恐怖学说,包举宇内以自养,可谓邪;以一党一派一人之意志,践旨于兆民之上,至本末颠倒,上下凌替,可谓逆。以此三亡而不断进击,只是自速其祸而已。我想起斯巴达王里奥尼达和他的三百勇士,在温泉关前迎击波斯王薛西斯的五十万大军,战况如此惨烈,即使战至最后一人,他们仍然送出了平安的捷报。我们也要在这艰难之地继续战斗,直至自由的佳音传遍!

唐荆陵
2016年1月29日


Super Tuesday GOP Primaries

There are a number of good articles out there with detailed analyses on Super Tuesday primaries. People can read those if you want a more in depth analyses.
I just want to point out a few key things for the super Tuesday races tomorrow.

1. Yes, with no one dropping out from the remaining group of 5 candidates, Donald Trump is still poised to win the majority of the states, possibly 8-10 of them, or more. With votes split among Cruz, Rubio, Kaisch and Carson, no single person can fight against Trump now.

2. Ted Cruz must win Texas, his home state. If he scores anything less than the #1 spot, his campaign will be in serious trouble. If you can’t win in your home state Texas, where else can you win? Texas is the single most important state for the Cruz Campaign.

3. Marco Rubio has a very narrow window to consolidate support, 2 weeks. If Ted Cruz drops out after Super Tuesday, possibly along with Carson (I don’t know why he’s still in the race anyway), Marco has two weeks of time to consolidate support needed before the March 15 Florida Primary. If Marco can’t win Florida, his campaign will be in trouble just like Cruz’s. Rubio hasn’t won a single state, he must do well in at least 1-2 states on Super Tuesday to gather momentum forward.

4. John Kaisch also must win his home state Ohio on March 15. He seems to be doing well over there with significant lead over Trump. However, if he doesn’t do well in a number of mid-western and moderate northeastern states before March 15, it’s questionable if he has a path forward, even if he wins Ohio.

Either candidates drop out to let the last remaining alternative to Trump consolidate support to go against Trump, or they can choose to stay in the race until the bitter end. In a scenario where no single candidates, including Trump, has the majority of delegates needed to be nominated, a brokered convention would become more and more likely.

In a brokered convention, party establishment/insiders likely would choose someone more conventional than Trump. However, even if that happens, and someone other than Trump is nominated at the brokered convention, the GOP could be severely hurt due to the self-inflicted wound, and a divided party would be less effective in fighting against the democrats during General Election in November. And, if Clinton emerges as the definite winner from the Super Tuesday democratic primaries, she would have 4-5 months to spend attacking the Republicans, while not having to worry about any intra-party opponents.