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Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

Letting the public have its say on policies

The results of US-Taiwan negotiations on beef imports and the government’s subsequent attitudes and actions in dealing with the matter reflect the failings of a political system characterized by one-party rule.

The government ignored the importance of the issue from the start and paid no attention to South Korea’s problems after it allowed US beef to be imported again. Negotiations lasted for 17 months yet lacked communication with the legislature, opposition parties and civic organizations. The government was so arrogant that it did not even consult experts on mad cow disease.

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Misjudging public opinion

Taiwan is not only passive on cross-strait matters, it is at an impasse. Academics from Chinese think tanks made loud calls at a recent seminar in Taiwan for the two sides to begin political talks, while Chinese President Hu Jintao (胡錦濤) proposed launching talks on a peace accord when meeting former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) chairman Lien Chan (連戰) at the APEC summit in Singapore.

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The ECFA is the main game

The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) said on Thursday that it has drafted amendments to the Regulations Governing Foreign Bank Branches and Representative Offices (外國銀行分行及代表人辦事處設立及管理辦法) and the Rules Governing Offshore Banking Branches (國際金融業務分行管理辦法).

The amendments will take effect after the financial regulator considers industry feedback. Foreign banks will be given a grace period of one year to comply with the requirements.

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Sledging the wrong foreigners

Seminar presentations don’t come any more laughable than this. Zheng Bijian (鄭必堅), a former vice president of the Central Party School of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), yesterday repaid his Taiwanese hosts’ hospitality with a lecture on how aspirations for Taiwanese independence would fade amid longing for improved cross-strait relations.

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Fifth open letter on the erosion of justice in Taiwan

The list of signatories grows by almost 20%

Writer Jerome F. Keating, Ph.D. and thirty other scholars and writers from the US, Canada, Asia, Europe and Australia have penned
a fifth open letter about the serious problems occurring under the administration of President Ma Ying-jeou.

The letter reminds us that "a decrease of tension across the Taiwan Strait would indeed be welcome, but [...] that this should not be done at the expense of the hard-won democracy" and that "Taiwan should be more fully accepted by the international community as a full and equal partner." Read the full letter at the link above, but here is a large excerpt [emphasis mine]:

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Ma's Poor Performance Draws Yet a 5th Letter of Protest from International Scholars.

The quality of justice in Taiwan continues to erode and the freedom of the press declines; people wonder why its president, Ma Ying-jeou, like a one-trick pony is stuck. Abuses abound yet all Ma can think of is to try and push his dangerous and non-transparent ECFA deal on the people. Freedom House and Reporters without Borders express disappointment and give the country lower marks on Ma's performance. As a result the international group of scholars and writers have no choice but to write another letter of protest and concern on Taiwan's failing democracy. It is their fifth letter in barely one year. The number of those signing continues to grow as does the awareness of Ma's incompetence. The letter follows:

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2015-12-26 Taiwanese Shrine Initation & Marytr-Spirit Enshrine Ceremony
2014-02-28 228 Tâi-uân-sîn(Taiwan gods) Thanksgiving Blessing Assembly and Trong R. Chai Tâi-uân-sîn Thanksgiving Praying Ceremony
2013-08-18 Holy Mountain Holiness Birthday and Tâi-uân-sîn Lin Mao-sheng Statue's Placement Ceremony
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Newsflash

Prosecutors yesterday indicted former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) on charges of leaking classified information and abuse of authority in the wiretapping of telephone conversations between then-legislative speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) during an investigating into alleged improper political lobbying in 2013.