[quote=“Vorkosigan”]Can we really say that Chen was exercising “extraconstitutional power?” The remark goes to the heart of the fundamental problems with the ROC Constitution and its weak presidency. This is going to happen again and again, because the legislature has too much power and the executive too little, and what it has is not well-defined. Nor is the judiciary independent enough. The ROC government was simply never meant to be operated as an actual government; it was just the exoskeleton of a one-party state run by authoritarian rule.
While I certainly agree that there are fundamental problems with the ROC constitution, I don’t think that the legislature has too much power. It is true that the central story of Taiwanese democracy has been the increasing power of the legislature. But in practice, the executive branch is far more powerful. The weakest branch is the judiciary, which is still timid and conservative.
What Taiwan needs to do is get rid of either the position of President or Premier, streamline the executive, and redefine its powers and privileges so that clear lines of authority are established. At the moment Chen is in the unenviable position of having all of the responsibiltiy and none of the power.
Hear! Hear! But actually the president is the guy with all the power and none of the responsibility. The premier, on the other hand, has no power but lots of responsibility. That’s why we get a new premier almost every year.