Many Cantonese outside the control of communist-held 廣東 (Guangdong) & 廣西(GuangXi) (i.e., 香港 (Hong Kong), 澳門 (Macau), and especially those living overseas, including those in 星加坡 [Singapore], Malaysia, and elsewhere) still follow Taiwanese politics very closely. Why? Because Taiwan is the last vestige of the 中華民國 (Republic of China). A country, that with the financial backing of many overseas Chinese, helped to overthrow the last imperial dynasty. Heck, even the man deemed to be the Founding Father is Cantonese.
The new republic had its issues, but when 孫中山 (Sun, Yat-Sen) passed away, things didn’t get any better. At the time, his long-time protégé 汪精衛 (Wang, Ching-wei), was side-stepped, and 蔣介石 (Chiang, Kai-Shek) usurped power. Even if he wasn’t officially at the helm, he used all his connections to sabotage anyone for his own gain within the main political party, the 國民黨 “KMT”.
Let’s take the 九一八事變 (Mukden Incident), where the Japanese attacked 滿洲 (Manchuria) for instance: Then 行政院院長 (Premier) 汪精衛, ordered 張學良 (Chang, Hsueh-Liang) to put up a fight and push them back. Afterall, 張學良 was the warlord of the Northeast at the time, and who’s very region was being attacked, you’d think orders like this wouldn’t need to be passed down, right? WRONG! 張學良 was 蔣介石‘s younger god-brother, and if orders didn’t come from him, he wouldn’t take them. More importantly, 蔣介石 felt it was more important to fight the communists instead of the Japanese. This is more than an extension of the Wang-Chiang rivalry, it showed 蔣介石‘s prioritization and poor decision-making. Skipping other details, let’s look at the 淞滬會戰 (Battle of Shanghai). His major strategy was always to try to envelop the enemy, and if they kept advancing, he’ll just keep enveloping them, and eventually pinch them off. That didn’t work out well, which is why Japanese troops chased them down to 南京 (NanKing), and led to one of the worst massacres in the war. Nice strategy, Chiang! Way to win the war! Luckily, his generals put up more of a fight than he did.
Eventually, with the help of the Americans, Japan surrendered their territories in China back to the Chinese –including Taiwan. This however, was when the 國共內戰 (Chinese Civil War) began, where Chiang fought the Communists. If you liked his tactics in the war against Japan, wait ’till you get this: He didn’t really put up a fight. Once he got control of Taiwan, he went for it, leaving behind a bunch of people to die on his behalf, so that he could escape to Taiwan.
To conclude: Chiang. Can’t put up a fight.
So when the KMT retreated to Taiwan, this pretty much influences the party that he held control. To this very day, the KMT still can’t put up a fight against the Communists. Today, this is evidenced with the current KMT party leader 朱立倫 (Eric Chu), and his visit to 北京 (Beiing), to meet with the head of the Communist Party, the guys who whooped their ass, in reconciliation. Whether you view Taiwan to be an independent nation, or a vestige of a “Free China”, these guys have given up long, long ago.