Law trumps feng shui
A Taiwanese man has been sentenced to four months in jail for cutting down more than 40 trees at an apartment complex, claiming they would undermine the feng shui of his nearby house, a newspaper said yesterday. Feng shui is the Chinese practice of geomancy, in which objects and spaces are arranged to supposedly achieve harmony with the environment. The Taipei District Court convicted "feng shui expert" Lo Pu-yi (羅蒲逸) of cutting down the trees in an apartment complex next to his home on a hill in suburban Taipei, the Apple Daily reported. It said Lo's neighbors had accused him of cutting down the banyan and willow trees, as well as bamboo, saying the foliage blocked the flow of air and could undermine his livelihood. A separate court will handle his neighbors' claim for NT$400,000 (US$12,000) in damages, the paper said. Lo could not be reached for comment.
CDC announces flight rule
A new regulation is slated to take effect as early as September that will bar people in the infectious phase of tuberculosis from taking flights that are longer than eight hours in duration. "This is a measure to protect the other passengers on the aircraft," Director of the Center for Disease Control (CDC) Steve Kuo (郭旭崧) said. Infectious tuberculosis patients will be able to fly on flights shorter than eight hours as long as they wear a face mask. Taiwan is taking its cue from WHO standards in determining the eight-hour cut-off point, Kuo said. "If a patient follows the suggestions for treatment of tuberculosis, he or she should only be infectious for two weeks or so," CDC Deputy Director-General Lin Ding (林頂) said. "In the meantime, they can still travel provided they adjust their itinerary to take shorter flights," Lin said.
Father dies, riddle remains
Yin Duo (尹鐸), the father of murdered navy captain Yin Ching-feng (尹清楓), died yesterday with his wish of uncovering the truth behind his son's death still unfulfilled. The infamous Yin murder, associated with the Lafayette frigate procurement scandal, remains unsolved after 14 years. Yin is widely believed to have been about to blow the whistle on colleagues who were taking kickbacks from the deal. Since Yin Ching-feng's death in late 1993, Yin Duo has been traveling around the country and collecting information to try and solve the mystery of his son's death, but to no avail. Yin Duo was admitted to Minsheng hospital in Taoyuan last Thursday with a brain hemorrhage. He passed away yesterday, aged 86. Yin Ching-feng's widow, Li Mei-kuei (李美葵), said that her husband died before his son's murder could be solved would remain a lifelong regret for the family.
Cold front approaching
An approaching cold front is expected to send temperatures in most of Taiwan to below 10?C over the next three days starting tomorrow, according to a forecast by the Central Weather Bureau. Meteorologists said that northeastern Taiwan and areas north of Tainan, as well as the outlying islands of Kinmen and Matsu, could experience temperatures as low as 7?C between tomorrow and Monday. The mercury is expected to rise slightly from Tuesday but parts of Taiwan could still have early morning temperatures down to 10?C or lower until next Friday. The bureau warned aquaculturists to take preventive measures against cold weather losses.