Today’s entry is a bit late, because the first Blogs of the Round Table discussion took place from 11am to 1pm. Sassy makes a preliminary report. La Vida Lawyer had a meeting, so posted a manifestation, instead. Uploading the transcript is a pain because all the entries are in reverse chronology… Anyway, once it’s up, we can go on to the next round table discussion, which might be pre- or post-SONA.
Last night, GMA network’s 24 Oras focused on problems a Fact-finding Commissions might face, particularly before the Supreme Court. What’s interesting is that some of the problems (constitutionality, duplication of functions) were brought up by the Secretary of Justice and the Executive Secretary. The headlines today reflected this, in a way: the Manila Times says the President’s allies aren’t sold on the idea; Manila Standard Today says Congress is divided on the issue; Malaya says pretty much the same thing; Inq7.net chooses to focus on the increasing confidence of the Communist Party (Newsstand opines the CPP may be leaving behind a messy paper trail). Interesting news is that Susan Roces may be expanding her activities, or at least opposition efforts, as shown by a trip to Davao.
The TV news also carried the outright refusal of some people dangled as potential members of a commission (Atty. Romeo Capulong), and the non-commital response of others (former Senate President Jovito Salonga), a story focused on by The Daily Tribune.
In the pundit’s corner, let me begin with my calling a fact-finding commission a Casablanca commission in my column for today in the Inquirer (in the Arab News, my column this week is on Britain’s response to terrorism); Anding Roces is all for such a commission; Gemma Cruz-Araneta suggests Mexico as a model for what’s going on; Ellen Tordesillas revisits the goings-on in the Department of Foreign Affairs; Max Soliven mentions a wiretapping controversy in India (but there were others, which I’ve mentioned, too); Dong Puno discusses senators as an endangered species; Tony Abaya in his column (the most intriguing read, today) discusses possible members of a junta in the minds of the Estrada camp:
As far as I can make out, the preferred members of this putative Ã¢â‚¬Å“revolutionary councilÃ¢â‚¬Â are Binay, Fortunato Abat, Salvador Enriquez Jr. (budget secretary under FVR), Renato de Villa (AFP COS and defense secretary under FVR), Horacio Ã¢â‚¬ËœBoyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ Morales (agrarian reform secretary under Erap, and co-founder of the National Democratic Front, the political arm of the Communist Party of the Philippines) and two as yet unidentified (to me) communists, one of them a Ã¢â‚¬Å“reaffirmist,Ã¢â‚¬Â the other a Ã¢â‚¬Å“rejectionist.Ã¢â‚¬Â
…I understand that Susan Roces and Evangelist Eddie Villanueva have both been invited to join the Binay-Ejercito Ã¢â‚¬Å“revolutionary councilÃ¢â‚¬Â but, for different reasons, both remain ambivalent or uncommitted toward it.
He also says Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay was summoned to Washington, D.C. to have conversations with American officials:
If you are confused by the irreconcilable disunities within this ideologically cock-eyed group and are underwhelmed by the unadulterated mediocrity of most of its members, know that there are some people who actually take them seriously. Binay was summoned to Washington the other week, as were Boy Morales and Eddie Villanueva months before this crisis blew up. But I honestly do not know if they were encouraged or discouraged by State and Defense in their Ã¢â‚¬Å“revolutionaryÃ¢â‚¬Â undertaking.
Rigoberto Tiglao mounts a strong defense of the President, which is feebly answered by Dinky Soliman (incidentally, my take on the “Hyatt 10”: if you are going to make a political move, don’t rely on well-meaning but rather inept politicians like Butch Abad; they should have just resigned, and not said anything, for talking the way they did goes against our cultural grain).
In the blogosphere, Paeng worries about the coming South East Asian games; And, in the Lunatic Fringe department: Newsstand has a series of interesting entries: on not giving Angara’s side to accusations he tried to make a deal with the Vice-President; two entries, here and here, on the Truth Commission; a curious blog called Anonymous Sources makes its debut; JJ Disini muses on Cesar Purisima’s apology to the Supreme Court.
Photo from Inq7.net
Elly Pamatong, whose earlier incarnation was leader of the Statehood movement, files an impeachment complaint against the Vice-President. He (Pamatong) was last seen, of course, haunting the Susan Roces press conference. We can file this story under the Lunatic Fringe department.