United Daily News Editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
November 30, 2016
Executive Summary: Hannah Eulan, a German political theorist, cited the trial of Adolf Eichmann, a Nazi war criminal, to show that when the majority of individuals in society refuse to think, collective madness will ultimately push the whole society to commit the ultimate crime. "In politics, obedience is tantamount to support." People must not assume this matter has nothing to do with them. Some people on Taiwan still regard the KMT as a “bandit regime” and seek to remove it. But next to the DPP, the KMT pales by comparison. When Taiwan's democratic values and constitutional foundations are eroded, public silence will be the chief culprit.
Full Text Below:
According to the Executive Yuan Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee, or CIPAS, the Central Investment Company and the Hsinyutai Company must be nationalized in accordance with the Act Governing the Handling of Ill-gotten Properties by Political Parties and Their Affiliate Organizations. CIPAS arrived at this decision last week, and alleged that the Central Investment Company and Hsinyutai Company were illicit creations of the KMT. Premier Lin immediately convened the relevant ministries to discuss the matter, and form a takeover team. The actions of CIPAS have provoked a series of public controversies. Its procedures have been illegal, even unconstitutional. Yet CIPAS chairman Wellington Koo refuses to relent. President Tsai and the DPP bear the greatest responsibility. But the public cannot assume that such matters do not concern them, and stand idly by doing nothing.
Since CIPAS began operations, it has assumed that it is above the law. It has acted in complete disregard of legal procedures and justice. In September it ordered the Bank of Taiwan and Bank Sinopac to freeze the KMT's accounts. The Taipei High Administrative Court ruled that order issued by CIPAS was illegal. It ruled that the KMT is legally allowed to withdraw funds. But CIPAS ignored the court's ruling, and continued its freeze on KMT accounts in the two banks. CIPAS considers itself above the courts, hence entitled to ignore the court's decisions.
Last week, CIPAS decided that the Central Investments Company and Hsinyutai Company must be nationalized. This too, was contrary to the spirit of the Constitution. According to Wellington Koo, the two companies are the products of past party-state equivalence, when the government and state owned entities were interconnected, and a single party could use its dominant position to acquire illicit assets. Nationalization, Koo argues, is therefore the fulfillment of transitional justice. But the KMT acquired these assets before the Republic of China Constitution was amended on December 25, 1947. Therefore these assets are not covered by current constitutional provisions. They must be dealt with in accordance with the General Outline of the Constitution for the Political Tutelage Period of the Republic of China. The General Outline stipulated that the party and the government are one. The Party Assets Act was not in effect at the time. Any ruling must therefore abide by the General Outline, according to which “the party leads the government”. Besides, the KMT brought the gold and the government assets to Taiwan from the Mainland.
According to CIPAS, the Central Investment Company sold 200 million NT in bonds in 1971. Before that, KMT party owned businesses showed only a small two year surplus. CIPAS claims that the Central Investment Company, founded in 1971, is a KMT
affiliate organization. But the Company Law and Public Organizations Law then in effect did not expressly prohibit political parties from investing. The Public Organizations Law allowed the formation of organizations outside the party only after 1971. CIPAS claims that the China Investment Company was created by the sale of 200 million in bonds. Nevertheless it cannot ignore the shareholders' investments, the board of supervisors' oversight, and other capital injections. Not to mention the fact that its subsidiaries are independent legal entities and independent shareholder groups. The Constitution protects their property rights as well.
Finally, Executive Yuan and CIPAS spokesmen have repeatedly argued that according to the Administrative Procedure Law, Section 116, the China Investment Company and Hsinyutai Company shares must be nationalized. They will not stop because the KMT files suit. The KMT may call for a constitutional amendment, but it will not influence the CIPAS one iota. The DPP thumbs its nose at the justice system, and issues threats against the justice system, even as it holds high the banner of transitional justice. It abuses its executive power to defy the judicial process. Even if future courts render adverse judgments, such judgments can be challenged as improper.
Even more astonishing is the attitude of CIPAS regarding the burden of proof, the presumption of guilt, and the right to remain silent. It ignores due process and does whatever it pleases. CIPAS even demands the authority to conduct searches of "premises where it is not welcome" despite insufficient evidence, based on the presumption of guilt.
Searches of public organizations for evidence of illegal conduct require police officials to present sufficient evidence to the court for the issuance of search warrants, in order to protect innocent parties. Today however, CIPAS can unilaterally presume illicit conduct and ignore judicial rulings. It can use the Act Governing the Handling of Ill-gotten Properties by Political Parties and Their Affiliate Organizations to ram through tailor made legislation. It can presume guilt, enforce ex post facto laws, and ignore statutes of limitations. These provisions have been in force for 71 years. CIPAS is using a single law to destroy our entire judicial system.
At the core of democracy is the rule of law. Legal abuses by CIPAS reveal how the DPP government is destroying the basic values of democracy. The reason CIPAS is so bold, is of course President Tsai Ing-wen and her policy of transitional justice. Tsai Ing-wen and the DPP government are the driving force behind this subversion of democracy. They bear responsibility for the destruction of democracy.
Hannah Eulan, a German political theorist, cited the trial of Adolf Eichmann, a Nazi war criminal, to show that when the majority of individuals in society refuse to think, collective madness will ultimately push the whole society to commit the ultimate crime. "In politics, obedience is tantamount to support." People must not assume this matter has nothing to do with them. Some people on Taiwan still regard the KMT as a “bandit regime” and seek to remove it. But next to the DPP, the KMT pales by comparison. When Taiwan's democratic values and constitutional foundations are eroded, public silence will be the chief culprit.
2016/11/30 下午 07:54:26 主筆室