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Adieu, year 2013 with regret
DECEMBER 31, 2013 05:49  
When we open a New Year, 363 days seems like many. But when we turn the last page of the calendar, we have deep regret for so many days that have gone nowhere. It takes 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes and 46 seconds for the earth to revolve the sun. One year is the 365 days divided by 12 months. The passage of a year means that the earth has revolved around the sun and returned to the starting point, but it is not the exact starting point, because we have extra one day in every four years.

Passing a year and welcoming another cannot be as simple as the principle of astrology. The meaning of passing a year differs from country to country and from person to person. The figures who featured in the editorial page in the January 1, 2013 issue of The Dong-A Ilbo were rapper Psy and president-elect Park Geun-hye ahead of her inauguration as Korea뭩 18th president. Psy, born in an year of the snake according to the Chinese zodiac sign, 몉ose to an instant stardom that was so fast that he was even said 뱓o have conquered the world with the horse (actually horse-back riding dance) the most instantly ever since Genghis Khan. We had expectations that President Park Geun-hye, who is the nation뭩 first female head of state, would carry out her mission to achieve the unity of the people, which constitutes the call of our era, but her performance in the first year after her inauguration has failed to meet our expectations. However it is fortunate that the rail workers strike that was the longest in history has come to an end just like a cold spell ends, just before the country welcomes the New Year.

The Economist magazine of the U.K. predicted at the end of last year that 몋he Park Geun-hye administration will seek pro-business policy although support from chaebol companies will wane a bit, while economic growth would rebound from the 2012 slump. The prediction was accurate to some extent, but working class people had a tough year as usual. It is hoped that in the New Year the warmth of economic recovery trickles down to reach the working class from big businesses, and no working class people would be left behind, shivering amid freezing weather.

The main character of the 2013 hit drama 밃nswer Me 1994 was glaring youth who drew attention as 밡ew Generation and 밲 Generation in the early 1990s. They are the first generation who embraced individualism and pragmatism amid the blessing of video culture and computer. But they experienced the Asian financial crisis around the time they graduated from college, and have now grown to people in their 40s who are coping with worries over home purchase and education expenses for their children. These people who are the central pillar of the Korean people are somewhat progressive, and have strong anger against economic polarization and corruption, but they remain the same in terms of expertise, diversity, emotion and details as they were at younger ages.

How people who spent youth in 2013 will remember this year 20 years from now? Wouldn뭪 it be too lonesome and gloomy to answer this question with phrases such as 멲dding lines in their resumes, 몆reparation of countless resumes to seek employment and no-reply from recruiters, and a 몊tubborn march by the privileged who enjoy lifetime employment? What the content of 밃nswer Me 2013 will be is up to the future that we will draw up together.

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