A Little Anti-ECFA

I went to a small Anti-ECFA gathering on the 26th, unfortunately the rain kept me from taking pictures while there was any amount of people there. I know, ECFA has since been signed and its being debated in the legislature where the DPP is pushing to get full disclosure on the terms of this secret trade agreement. Unfortunately they do not have the support required to actually stop this bill or even to understand what is in it. Oh… wait… whats that you say? Lawmakers are supposed to vote on a law that they cannot see? Yup– you did read my previous sentence correctly. Not surprising, you should really look at the human rights violations that have occurred here lately.

I guess its time to take down the flags and admit that a government that continually breaks the law, without repercussion, is not one that is going to listen to a crowd of people protesting in front of the presidential building. It is really quite sad that so many people in Taiwan have given up their life, liberty and worldly possessions for democracy and now idly sit by assuming that a passive role is going to automatically sweep the full realization of that dream into their lap. Well lets face it, it has come to the point that a plenitude of flagrant violations of a democratic system have infested Taiwan. While martial law has not yet been declared, I would like to ask what is happening now that did not happen then? We have kidnappings, gangs in the streets, scores of human rights violations and a government that is not responsible for their actions. We have land being taken against the will of the owners with new deeds being printed, making the existing ones null and void. We have a larger separation between the haves and have not’s, and lo and behold there is fear of the government.

Well I have said more than enough. Please enjoy some pictures that I have taken.


Room Temperature is now Illegal for Large Businesses

An interesting thing comes to mind when many people look for ideas to ‘make’ others do what they think they should do…. Precedent. Even in Taiwan where precedent does not always apply to legal decisions, there still are quotations of precedent. Recently an example of precedent as a justification in Taiwan is during the rejection of the ECFA referendum, where it is stated that other countries did not vote on NAFTA. Welcome large businesses, we are now going to control your temperature and issue large fines for non-compliance.

New rule will make Taipei businesses warmer next month

By Mo Yan-chih
Wednesday, Jun 30, 2010, Page 2

More than 500 office buildings, department stores, supermarkets and hotels in Taipei will have to keep their air conditioning at 26ºC or above starting tomorrow, after the Taipei City Council passed a regulation compelling private businesses to increase energy saving. The regulation, passed on May 31, sets limits on the use of air conditioners and lighting for private businesses, and the city government will first target more than 500 businesses using more than 100,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity per month before applying the regulations to smaller firms.

The Department of Economic Development said that businesses will be given a six-month period to adjust. Starting from January next year, businesses whose air conditioning is below 26ºC could be fined between NT$10,000 and NT$50,000.

Representatives from 12 businesses, including Taipei 101 Mall, Pacific Sogo and Carrefour, yesterday joined Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) in pledging their dedication to saving energy and reducing carbon emissions.

Cathy Yang (楊文琪), an assistant vice president at Taipei Financial Center Corp, owner of Taipei 101, said the company had installed energy-saving measures, including using efficient light bulbs and setting higher temperatures for air conditioning to reduce carbon emissions.

The skyscraper’s annual electricity bill is about NT$100 million (US$3,120,000) and the energy-saving measures helped the company save a total of NT$65 million in the past two years, she said.

“It’s a win-win situation for us and our customers. The energy-saving measures saved us money and created a more comfortable environment for customers,” she said.

Hau said the 500 businesses used about 2.57 billion kilowatts last year, or 38 percent of the city’s electricity. Those businesses could save enough electricity to supply about 7,000 households by reducing their power consumption by 1 percent.

“I want to also call on all residents to support this policy and join us in saving more energy,” Hau said.

It would be nice to think that as a business owner, we decide how much energy we use. Considering that we pay for this utility ‘service’, and TaiPower has been aggressive at the flexible rate charges ensuring that they can continue to provide this power. Simple laws of economics suggest that it is in the best interests of a business operator to reduce their power consumption as much as possible.

According to the CAN/CSA Z412-00 – “Office Ergonomics” guidelines which are the reflection of in depth analysis at human behavior in working situations states that in summer with humidity >60% that average room temperatures of 23 – 25.5 should exist in the working environment. However, take a look at the comfort chart below;

CAN/CSA Recommendations
°F °C
78 25 Optimal for bathing, showering. Sleep is disturbed
75 24 People feel warm, lethargic and sleepy. Optimal for unclothed people.
72 22 Most comfortable year-round indoor temperature for sedentary people.
70 21 Optimum for performance of mental work.
64 18 Physically inactive people begin to shiver. Active people are comfortable.

According to ASHRAE 22.5 degrees Celsius is the average recommended ambient room temperature for computer hardware components.

So according to regulations based on in-depth studies and trail-under-fire, we find that the premium operating environment for humans and computers are very close together (21-22.5 degrees). Now, lets make a regulation stating that if a company has a temperature set to < 26 degrees they will be fined NT$10-50,000. This is not a comfortable work environment (and for a westerner is almost torture).

Did anyone consider that eliciting change for reduced energy consumption may be better regulated in altering building code for insulation? Rather than inhumane treatment and another absurd law?

Political Backlash – The AhBien Story

As many people, even those who may not know about Taiwan, are aware President Chen Shui-Bian (ahBien) was arrested at the end of his second presidential term. In Taiwan, the source of information or updates on these proceedings has only been the politically controlled media. These media sources have been reporting rumor and third fourth and fifth hand information presented as facts. The inaccuracies have spread so far as to hinder prosecution attempts at information gathering by following hearsay from media sources.

There have been some global calls for accountability in the accuracy and humanity of the handling of this case. In some small response to this pressure recently there was a NYU University dialogue focusing on the trial of Chen Shui-bian. Thank you to NYU for opening this dialogue and posting it on YouTube. It is a long drawn out recap of the conclusions of the AhBien investigation without actually covering the conclusions of the investigation made superficial by the Taiwanese cultural need to save face. However, some very useful information can be gathered from the dialog and its well worth your time to watch considering I don’t have the time to respond to 1/12th of the issues raised here. I have linked the video below.

My Favorite Quotes

Video 1 approx: 1:05:45 Wang Jaw-Perng 國立台灣大學

“The trial of Chens case was independent, although I believe the judge was very bias and Chen did not get a fair trail.”

Video 1 approx:00:33:10 Nigel Li, Esq. 理律法律事務所

“Actually judicial independence or another notion, which is highly related in this case that is another constitutional principle… assumption of innocence. These two basic principles are also novel ideals to the legal culture of the young democracy in Taiwan….”

The trail of ahBien leaves one shrouded in mystery, specifically “What are the facts in the case?”. Unfortunately details of any evidence against ahBien do not come out in this dialogue, however there was an uncontested comment that all evidence against ahBien for extortion and money laundering is circumstantial. In Taiwan acceptance of evidence is the decision of the 3 judge panel, and they can decide if hearsay is admissible.  The additional fact that the maximum time any detainee can be held incommunicado is 2 months with the possibility of a single 2 month extension seems to ignore the fact that ahBien has been held from 2008 until now (2010/06/17). However as we know on the ground, as the time for this deadline draws nearer additional charges are brought against ahBien effectively resetting this 4 month limit. You may also find it interesting that the detention holding cell is 2.5 square meters, and a single 30 min exclusion from this cell is permitted daily. Another important fact of this case is better summed up by another quote from this video.

Video 1 approx: 1:04:30 Wang Jaw-Perng

“Judge B [the judge] was very active and very inquisitorial sometimes he was more aggressive than prosecutors in conducting the trial. In several occasions we can see this judge b [the judge] interrogated the defense witnesses for up to two hours”… “I think he did a good job for the prosecutors, this judge b [the judge] also a lot of times on many occasions he yelled at defense lawyers and yell at defendants he even sometimes mocked defense lawyers and defendants. So to protest the unfairness of judges and judiciary Chen [ahBien] dismissed all of his three defense lawyers and had several hunger strikes in the detention house.”

What happened to ahBien? A man who was able to win presidential election for two terms. A man who was considered a man of the people. Where are the people of his political campaign, his supporters and party? A man, who, as the dust is settling, only has two charges against him (the others have been dropped) and both are by circumstantial evidence. A man who was sentenced to life in prison, although that sentence has now been reduced to 20 years it is still a sentence far beyond any remedy found in the Taiwan legal code. A man who one month was the most powerful man in Taiwan and the next month was locked in a cell smaller than most bathrooms. Well for that answer we need to go to his people and ask.

In my conversations with party members I have attempted to find the source of this lack of support for ahBien. Initially I had began to suspect that many people had started to believe the media propaganda, and while this is true it is not so much the case with his party members. After the fall of ahBien a widespread ‘anti-corruption’ movement plagued Taiwan. Many people in office including several mayors found themselves under investigation and even incarcerated in the suspicion of mismanagement of slush funds. Interestingly enough, some of the accusations spread to those of the KMT party, but not one KMT political leader has been successfully prosecuted. In addition many ahBien supporters were drawn into the charges associated with those currently beimg held against Chen Sui-Bian. “Now is not the climate to be an ahBien supporter” said one party member and he is not the only one to express this sentiment. Many people however have expressed frustration and even anger at ahBien. One persons comments seemed to incorporate many other comments I have heard. “Chen Shui Bien had everything. We gave him 8 years to make changes to Taiwan. We supported him with large amounts of money. He was told the first thing that he should do is kill [not literally] the opposition. But now we find out he [ahBien] has enough money, and did not use that to support the party[DPP]. He was supposed to make Taiwan more better, but what has he done? He didn’t change the legal system, he didn’t use the chance to remove the opposition, he didn’t do anything that was needed. He deserves what he gets.” While the person went on to clarify that ahBien didn’t truly deserve everything that has happened, that person is unwilling to give ahBien any more support.

Unfortunately, it seems that the backlash of Chen Shui-Bians lack of monetary accountability and desire to leave the past behind when he stepped into office has given him a very harsh lesson in reality. Although, I would hope that in the spirit of human rights and concern for the legal system more Taiwanese would support not ahBien, but the legal decisions applicable to his case that have further reaching party implications in the future.

Part 1

Part 2


Taiwan Legal Resources in English

Generally in any country that you live there is little excuse given for ignorance of the law. While the reality is that even lawyers, prosecutors and legislators in most legal systems do not have an understanding of every law, regardless that does not eliminate your liability. In Taiwan, an additional complexity occurs with the common understanding of the legal terminology that is exacerbated for foreigners who most likely do not have above average literacy in Chinese characters. While it is important to remember that an English interpretation of law in Taiwan is irrelevant, a fairly solid understanding of these laws are available in English. Although, it is very sad to note that I cannot find the Taiwan Criminal Code (the bulk of information that would describe what is legal and not) in English, here are some resources that you can use to give you a more solid footing.

General Links:

Specific Links

I hope this gets anyone interested started on their legal trip down the Taiwanese rabbit hole.

Sexual Harrasment 10-second rule

Well many of us remember the days of childhood where a valued piece of candy or food was dropped on the floor. Even though we knew that the food/candy was dirty, somehow in our minds we convince ourselves that minimal impact with the ground for less than X amount of seconds is an acceptable time for the retrieval of said food. Well, now as adults it seems we have another reason to hang on to our pretense that everything is okay. After a court ruling (that in English conveniently does not mention this 10 second rule) which basically states that short periods of unwanted touching that is on the waist and shoulders is legally acceptable. Just keep your unwanted touching sessions to less than 10 seconds. Reading this article also seems to indicate that mitigating circumstances include a personal apology email after charges are filed.

Updated Thursday, June 17, 2010 10:07 am TWN, The China Post news staff

Waist, shoulders not ‘private parts’: court
TAIPEI, Taiwan — An appeals court yesterday acquitted a man of sexual harassment on the grounds that waists and shoulders do not constitute “private parts.”

Chang Guo-hua, a 36-year-old IT company manager, was found guilty and sentenced to 40-day detention by the Hsinchu District local court for wrapping his hand around the waist and shoulder of a female subordinate several times in an after work co-worker gathering in Feb. 2008.

According to the verdict by the district court, Chang had made several advances toward the subordinate, who is in her twenties, via instant messenger chats as early as 2007 but was rejected. The female employee told the district court that she felt offended when Chang touched her. She tried to dodge him by moving her body but he kept holding on to her with his hand. At the end, she stood up and left the party.

Chang apologized to her via email only after she complained to her superior and decided to push for charges.

The district court convicted Chang based on his apology email and the fact that his action against the plaintiff’s will had offended her.

However, the High Court, which heard the appeal case, ruled that Chang only expressed in the email that he was “sorry for all impolite action verbally and physically” but did not specifically admit touching the plaintiff’s shoulder and waist.

The High Court also judged that since the waist and shoulder of a woman are not different from those of a man and that women often wear clothing that reveals the waist and shoulder in summer, these two body parts cannot be regarded as private. Therefore, even if Chang had touched the plaintiff on her shoulder and waist, his action does not constitute sexual harassment as described by the current Sexual Harassment Prevention Act, which stated that the crime involves the touching of “buttocks, breasts or other private body parts.”

The Modern Women’s Foundation’s Executive Director Yao Shu-wen decried the High Court’s acquittal of Chang, criticizing the judges for being “detached from the plaintiff’s feelings” and for failing to understand the different perceptions of a”private part” by men and women, according to the newspaper Apple Daily.

Tseng Chao-yuan (曾昭媛), the secretary-general of the Awakening Foundation, also called for the amendment of the Sexual Harassment Prevention Act to be amended by substituting the restrictive list of “buttocks, breasts or other private body parts” with more general terms like “the invading and harassing of one’s body” so a better standard for judgment can be formed by the court through field work.

In every legal system there is a difficulty for judges in separating the intent against the letter of the law, and many people question the validity of these decisions. However, a closer examination of situations like this that set precedent or provide clarifications to the interpretation of the law should be evaluated much more carefully. Furthermore, a disciplinary panel or public morality panel should consider the decisions of sitting judges since it appears that independent rulings from a panel of judges is not adequate. While this is not a complete or realistic solution, something needs to be done in the interim since the creation of law in Taiwan and a more mature evaluation of law in this ‘child democracy’ (as the judicial excuses from Taiwan keep pointing out).

The Social Holocaust of Taiwan

“What do you think of the declining growth of Taiwan?” is the question I asked a select group of people. Beyond having no major concern, I hear comments like “A declining population rate is the norm in advanced societies.” and “Why would people want to have a child in todays society?”. What if I told you that, at the current rate Taiwan would slip from over 23 million people to just barely 21 million in the next 10 years? What if I told investors that in 20 years there would be an unavoidable GDP loss of NT$1603244606976 (US$50,101,393,968) for no other reason than a reduction in the workforce (Assuming the annual average GDP US$16,392 per capita in Taiwan as listed by the 2009 International Monetary Fund)? What if I told contractors that they should stop expanding the housing market, but rather only rebuild 2 in 3 decrepit houses? What if I told you that the only reason that the birthrates are this high is because 1 in 8 babies in Taiwan are born to a non-Taiwanese mother? What if I told you that in 40-50 years, it will be impossible for Taiwan to cover the cost of their older generation? But this question is about much more than money.

Where does this problem stem from? Unfortunately with the resources that I have at hand I can only make assumptions based on educated guesses. But at the root of any growth rate problem is an issue with relationships and decisions to have children. So lets take a quick look at some of the reasons why there would be less children based on existing relationships today. Well, tolerance and acceptance for same gender relationships would be an immediate response. Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Canada, South Africa, Norway, Sweden, Portugal and Iceland all accept same sex marriages (I am not saying Taiwan accepts this, but I am saying it is becoming more tolerant). Well all of these countries have lower birthrates, but no severe shifts after accepting same sex marriages, so that probably isn’t a major reason. There is an interesting article written by Time Magazine that very superficially covers this issue. They go on to suggest that selfishness is one of the core reasons. They have an interesting survey (of only 100 people) in Taiwan between the ages of 20 and 40 about their family plans. One-third didn’t plan to have any children for fear of losing two precious things: money and freedom. I do not think its that simple, and even if selfishness were the core reason what are the drivers for this selfishness?

Here are some of the obstacles I see in relationships in Taiwan. Lets take a quick look at what I call the ‘da jia’ mentality. There is a concept foreign to western cultures that all people are part of a big family. The saying in Chinese ‘da jia ni how’ is equivalent to Hello Everyone, but the literal meaning is big family you how. Any foreigner who lives in a Taiwanese family will be able to verify that there is no sense of privacy, nothing is sacred or private. I like to think of this as a holdover from a more socially tolerant society where members of a village shared food, shelter clothing etc. in order to survive in times of poverty. If you look at Taiwanese and Chinese times of poverty, and there are a lot of examples, you will find this generally true. Even further, today I like to visit small isolated villages in southern Taiwan. Where this mentality is still partially visible. In reality, the open and friendly ‘da jia’ mentality is all but dead in anything other than its reference to social politeness and historical understanding of the term. Lets evaluate the dating scene in Taiwan. An unofficial uncounted poll of mine has lead me to believe that the primary ways men and women meet up are by; work or school acquaintances, the internet or friends of friends. Meeting someone at the bookstore, or in the MRT are very rare examples. But in general it is socially unacceptable to try to meet people on the move (i.e. while commuting, while at a store, while with family and while with friends). Severely limiting the places and ways that it is acceptable to meet people. Now, lets take a quick look at the parent approval process in Taiwan. Taiwanese in many cases live with their parents for a good portion of their life. It is typical to live with their parents until they are well into their 30’s, and many will care for their parents when they get older. Things like sex are taboo (to the parents) without marriage, and the introduction between a partner and the parents typically does not occur until marriage is proposed. Forcing most relationships into the closet. Many Taiwanese, unless they can financially afford to move out of their parents house and have some financial stability, put off the decision to have a baby until their 30 something marriage. So having a baby at 32, does not leave much time for the decision to have another.

In summary, I would suggest that the loss of an extroverted nature in practice and in culture makes meeting the right person very challenging. Coupled with the facts that romantic relationships are heavily strained by the family and financial burdens for housing are high typically place generally acceptable ages for children into the twilight of child bearing years. This places an additional burden on society considering that this late birthing entry brings heightened chances for genetic defects. Ultimately these generally accepted facts bring about what I call the Social Holocaust of Taiwan. Unless a major shift in this philosophy occurs, a financial devastation of profound magnitude will occur in my lifetime. However, it must be noted that bringing Taiwan back to such levels of poverty may increase the birthrates once again.

A Historical Look on the Foreign View of Taiwan

I was just amazed with an article I read published by Time Magazine on Monday, Sep. 11, 1950. I think for historical reference alone it is an interesting read. I will not inject my opinions, but some interesting observations were made that play a large role in current issues today.

Formosa, an island about 100 miles off the South China coast, is slightly larger than Maryland. Two-thirds of Formosa is covered with tropical forest—banyans, Japanese cedars, teak, black ebony and most of the world’s camphor trees.

The island’s backbone is formed by two north-south mountain ranges which thrust up 16 peaks of 10,000 feet or more. On the east coast, the mountains become sheer rock walls, dropping 1,500 to 7,000 feet into the sea. On the west they fall away in successive terraces down to a wide coastal plain, thereby giving the island its Chinese name: Taiwan (Terraced Bay).

The climate and fertile soil combine to produce vast quantities of rice, tea, sugar and fruit, including the round, yellow-fleshed watermelons which Formosans like to eat chilled in vinegar. In their paddy fields many Formosans grow two crops of rice each year, follow up with a third crop of turnips or cabbages.

Snakes & Pirates. The Portuguese, who first sighted the island in 1590, were so entranced by its vistas of purple mountains rising out of lush, green lowlands that they named it Ilka Formosa (Beautiful Isle). But the Beautiful Isle has its shortcomings. In August and September it is whipped by destructive typhoons. It averages 330 earthquakes a year. Formosa also boasts twelve varieties of poisonous snakes, including the “hundred pace snake.” (The legend: the victim walks 100 paces and falls dead.)

The Dutch and the Spaniards arrived in Formosa in the 1620s. They fought the head-hunting Formosan aborigines and each other. In 1644 the Dutch captured the Spanish stronghold of La Santissima Trinidad at Keelung, but their victory was short-lived. Formosa was being inundated with South Chinese fleeing before the Manchu invaders of China. In 1661 one refugee, the pirate Koxinga, turned up at Formosa with a fleet and an army of 25,000 men, overwhelmed Formosa’s small Dutch garrison and proclaimed himself king of the island. Though he ruled for only a year before his death, Koxinga is still Formosans’ greatest hero.

Wasps & Head-Hunters. Until Koxinga’s time, Formosa had been bedeviled by Japanese pirates. Formosans still maintain that the Chinese residents of Kaohsiung beat off one Japanese attack in the 16th Century by setting afloat a host of bamboo tubes filled with live wasps. The curious pirates opened the tubes, were so badly stung that the Chinese captured the whole invading force.

In 1683 Formosa became a part of the Chinese Empire. Chinese settlers wrested control of the best land from the aborigines. This land steal aroused in the aborigines a hatred so implacable that even after World War I a traveler reported of the headhunters: “Mongolian [Chinese] heads are preferred, though those of other tribesmen, of domesticated natives or of Japanese are esteemed.”

During their 212 years under the Chinese Empire, Formosans of Chinese blood became different from mainland Chinese, much as colonial Americans developed a different type from their British stock. In appearance Formosans still resemble their South Chinese ancestors—short, dark, well-muscled people with broad faces and flat noses. Most Formosans still live in the straw-thatched huts which are the homes of South China’s peasants or in the two-story brick houses which are the homes of South China’s gentry. Formosans speak a Fukienese dialect, and few can talk to mainland Chinese without an interpreter.

Crows & Bombing Planes. In 1895, after its defeat in the Sino-Japanese War, China was forced to cede Formosa to Japan. Admiral Viscount Kabayama, appointed Japan’s first governor general, sailed down to Formosa in triumph, released from his flagship as a sign of victory a pair of crows. Their descendants still make Formosan daybreaks raucous.

The Formosan Chinese proclaimed a “Republic of Formosa” which the Japanese defeated in three weeks. The aborigines were harder to handle. To isolate the aborigines up in the mountains, the Japanese built what they called the Savage Guard Line, 360 miles of barbed wire fence, 230 miles of which were electrified in the 1920s. Along the Guard Line the Japanese maintained a force of 5,000 men who, as late as 1930, were besieging the aborigines with field guns, land mines and bombing planes.

Japanese rule in Formosa was a model of colonial exploitation. They developed an irrigation system so that water falling during the rainy season could be stored for use in dry periods, extended it to cover two-thirds of Formosa’s arable land. Under Japanese guidance, Formosa’s annual rice crop was doubled, and cultivation of sugar cane increased so greatly that in the years before World War II the Japanese Empire stood fourth among the world’s sugar-producing nations.

The Japanese also turned Formosa’s fragrant Oolong tea into a big-money crop, but here their customary sense of order and cleanliness deserted them. Of the girls employed in the tea-sorting godowns a Yankee traveler in 1922 complained: “Some of these tea-sorters are as much addicted to maternity as the cigarette-makers of Seville, and not a few carry young bead-eyed Mongolians slung in wide black bands over one hip. These pigtailed little toddlers do not always heighten one’s relish for the finished tea, as the big piles of leaves ready for sorting and perfuming are oftentimes their playgrounds, and through and over them they tumble and waddle with infantile disregard for consequences.”

Ports & Power. The Japanese were ready to spend money in order to make money. They gave Taipei, Formosa’s capital, a government building which would do credit to most British colonies, developed deepwater ports at Keelung and Kaohsiung. Throughout the island Japanese engineers built 2,463 miles of railway, 11,300 miles of good road. They harnessed Formosa’s short, swift-flowing rivers, built a large 300,000-kilowatt hydroelectric power station at Jihyuehu (Sun-Moon Lake). For other power sources, they worked Formosa’s coal deposits, believed to total 400 million metric tons, and exploited her oil, refining it at the rate of 5,000 gallons of gasoline a day.

Everywhere the Japanese scattered sugar mills, pineapple canneries and factories to produce textiles, chemicals, paper and industrial alcohol. At Kaohsiung and Hualien they built plants which produced about 10% of the Japanese Empire’s alumina and aluminum. By the beginning of World War II, Formosa was exporting more than Turkey or Yugoslavia, returning a yearly net profit of $100 million to Japanese investors and the Japanese government, had an export balance in trade with both China and Japan.

Gold Teeth & Electric Lights. Fifty years under Japan’s wing has given Formosans attitudes and habits rare on China’s mainland. Nearly every Formosan sports one or two gold teeth, the badge of Japanese health-consciousness. About 10% of Formosans are industrial or communications workers. Even the 71% of Formosans who are agricultural workers have electric lights in their huts, a luxury possessed by no other Asian peasants except the Japanese.

World War II shattered Formosan’s secure and, by Oriental standards, abundant life. U.S. bombers hit all of the island’s 42 sugar mills, put almost all of the rest of its industry out of commission. The bombers won the U.S. great face in Formosa by leaving the Japanese quarter of Taipei in rubble, damaging the Formosan section of town far less.

Wreckage & Reconstruction. At war’s end Formosa was placed under Chinese control with the understanding that China would get final possession of the island when the war with Japan was officially ended. (No peace treaty with Japan has been signed.) Formosans, stumbling about in the wreckage of their economy, found themselves in the hands of a despotic and inefficient Chinese governor, Chen Yi. After he had provoked a brief, bloody rebellion Chen Yi was removed. As the faltering Nationalist government fled from South China, Formosa became the refuge of nearly 2,000,000 mainland Chinese. Formosans complained bitterly that the rapacious Nationalist refugees acted like conquerors who did not expect to stay long.

In the last two years Formosans have grown more contented. Nationalist authorities have done a good job of economic reconstruction. Formosa’s overall production this year will be up to 75% of what it was in good prewar years. Formosan tenant farmers, who under the Japanese paid as much as 70% of their crops in rent, now pay only 37% to the landlord. Formosans have also been mollified by the improved morale of 500,000 Nationalist troops largely trained by V.M.I.-educated General Sun Li-jen.

Formosa’s 160,000 remaining aborigines are happier, too. They do little work. Some of them sublimate their head-hunting desires by taking monkey skulls; others make a play for the tourist trade with performances of native dances. And now that the harsh days of the Japanese Guard Line are gone, the aborigines are free to wander down to Taipei for an occasional glimpse of civilization.