Friday, April 01, 2005
MAC Legal Eagle: Smoke and Mirrors
The law specifically states:
Article 5-1Laws are enact to restict individuals and organizations. Punishments are explicitly stated to deter these behaviors. The punishment for violating 5-1 of the Act Governing Relations Between Peoples of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area is quoted as such:
Any individual, juristic person, organization, or other institution shall
not execute any agreement involving the governmental powers of the Taiwan Area
or political issues with any individual, juristic person, organization, or other
authorities or institution of the Mainland Area unless authorized by the
Mainland Affairs Council, Executive Yuan or each competent authorities concerned
in accordance with the provisions of this Act.
It seems like this was meant to deter white collar crime and not a political crime. The framers of this law knew that there would be repeat offenders and they would be tolerated in society to some extent. This law is meant to deter individuals who deal with the mainland from proceeding too quickly on serious matters. If it was meant to deter a serious political crime, the punishment would be harsher, as we could all imagine.
Any person who violates the provisions of Article 5-1 shall be
punished with an administrative fine of not less than two hundred thousand but
not more than two million New Taiwan Dollars; where the matter of violation is
serious or the person commits the same or similar violation again, it shall be
punished with imprisonment of not more than five years, or detention, or in lieu
thereof or in addition thereto, a fine of not less than five hundred thousand
New Taiwan Dollars
But no law exist in a vacuum, to uncover the true purpose of this law we need to look at this section.
“To cause damage to national security or interest,” is a very intereting concept. If one is a Taidu (Taiwan Independence) supporter it can be seen how the KMT meeting with the CCP would damage Taiwan Independence interest.
Any person who is entrusted to assist the handling of matters relating to any dealing between the peoples of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area or to negotiate or execute agreements and acts beyond the entrusted scope to cause damage to the national security or interests shall be punished with imprisonment of not more than five years, or detention, or in lieu thereof or in addition thereto, a fine of not less than five hundred thousand New Taiwan Dollars.
It could be argued that Taiwan Independence has already caused much damage to Taiwan’s national security and interest. With the passing of the Anti-Seccession Law in China, tension across the Strait is at an all time high.
This is a breakthrough moment because the KMT Chairman, Lien Chan (連戰), is planning to visit Beijing in June. In addition, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) and the People First Party (PFP) Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) have also expressed an interest in meeting with Chinese authorities. The beginning of true political interaction between PRC and ROC could be on the horizon.
So instead of looking for ways to punish these people, (who took a risk going to the PRC, China, and ironically, could now be facing dangers in ROC, Taiwan) we should be thanking them for opening a dialogue between China and Taiwan that has been long over due.
"The Party is not the Nation" is a common theme the DPP uses to criticize the KMT, for their past political behavior. Taidu interest is not the only national interest on Taiwan. It is time for the DPP to heed their own slogan.