About 3,000 Taiwanese farmers from across the island yesterday demonstrated in front of the Council of Agriculture to protest against what they say is the government's failure to take care of their interests. 'No more sacrifice to farmers, high-handed government,' shouted the farmers, who were upset by a recent government decision to remove special rural insurance programmes. The farmers are among the growing numbers who have found living on Taiwan more and more difficult. 'I used to support President Chen Shui-bian because I thought, being a native Taiwanese, he would do much better than the Kuomintang, which is from China,' a 61-year-old southern Taiwanese farmer said. He said he and most of his friends and relatives originally had high expectations of Mr Chen, given that he came from a poor family. But they have become disillusioned as their incomes have declined in the seven years since Mr Chen took power from the KMT. Eric Yang, 32, a perfume store owner from Tainan, said business had dwindled due to growing financial problems for ordinary families. 'The government says the economy is good, but I can't feel it. Many of my old customers aren't coming. The economy is good just for those on top.' Asked if he would vote next Saturday, Mr Yang said: 'Thanks, but I have more important things to do than to go to vote for either party.'