Yesterday, I read an article about how a person felt about my book The Pleasure of Politics. He said, “I live in Cheonan, and usually feel a strong sense of pride about being an inhabitant of Chungcheongnam-do. However, after reading the book The Pleasure of Politics, I really felt like moving to Seoul.” I took this remark as a truly great compliment.
The article was written by a college student named Lim Seong-hyeon. I feel greatly encouraged by his remarks. He came all the way from Cheonan to take part in the book concert held here in Seoul. There were even people who came all the way from Busan to attend it.
This book, which follows a Q&A format, is about what I have done as Seoul Mayor, and how. The questions are asked by O Yeong-ho, and Park Won Soon answers them. However, the book may just as easily be understood as a book about the questions asked by Park Won Soon and the responses given by Seoulites. It is a record of what we have done at Seoul Metropolitan Government pursuant to public demands after asking the people of the city what they wanted.
The book explains why I am so devoted to SNS, why we at Seoul Metropolitan Government made the Sidewalk Paving Bricks 10 Commandments, and how we reached an agreement about the promotion of irregular workers to regular ones, among other things.
Given the title of the book, many people ask me whether politics can really be an enjoyable occupation. I tell them, yes indeed, politics should be an enjoyable thing.
In this country, people have become concerned about polities, when in fact politicians should be concerned about people. Nonetheless, if the world can be changed by public participation and by communication with the public, isn’t that the pleasure and prerogative of politics?
A politician should be a kindhearted person who shares the delight and sorrow of the people, who has the determination to do what the people want. I would even go as far as to say that citizens are the chief components of the city.