An OFW Living in Hong Kong points to picture proof of election fraud: Caught in the act? Photos show poll “cheating” (Malaya) PCIJ has more: Evidence of 2004 poll fraud captured in photos? Ellen Tordesillas puts the photos online here, and here, and here.
Random Thoughts points to recent articles in the Philippine Daily Inquirer:
Now it can be told: Esperon was the key
A fellow columnist responded to the articles with these comments via e-mail:
This [referring to why “withdrawal” failed] is almost 100% accurate, comparing it to what I’ve heard from my own sources. What is clear is that there was no coup plot, no tie-up with the Reds.
[Referring to the civilian council story] I think there were two groups that were forming two different transition councils… The CPP-NPA has no role in both councils.
Update: Amando Doronila praises the Inquirer reports and can’t resist taking a potshot at Newsbreak and the PCIJ, saying “the series was a product of no-frills and unpretentious enterprise reporting, not one churned out by corporate-funded investigative journalism.” And yet, the armed forces are angry over the stories.
Oddly enough, just when the President seemed more relaxed, the Vice-President chimes in: De Castro: Arroyo must explain -VP advises boss it’s time to clear air on ‘Garci’. The Palace response has been frosty. Today, Bunye: Gloria done with Garci (Manila Times). While Threats remain — GMA (Manila Standard-Today).
In Thailand, the Nation editorializes in favor of a fact-finding commission. Sounds familiar?
There’s a great epigraph in Lewis Lapham’s essay, The Case for Impeachment: Why we can no longer afford George W. Bush. The epigraph is this:
A country is not only what it does – it is also what it puts up with, what it tolerates. –Kurt Tucholsky
In the punditocracy:
My column for today is Managing expectations. I propose that what defenders of the President or defenders of keeping her where she is, are defending Civilization As We Know It. Appearances are everything; and unless the President suddenly develops leprosy, she will appeal to the keep up appearances mentality.
Billy Esposo on why the Palace fears unnamed news sources:
Inside scoops are the most damaging kind of information. EO 464 is all about the prevention of classified or top secret information being transmitted to those in the senate who can use it against the regime. It is easier to debunk the claim of an outsider than a charge that is supported by insider testimony and actual documents.
The Telecom scandal emanated from a Malacanang source – the late Bing Rodrigo, one of Madame Gloria M. Arroyo’s closest friends. The President Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard graft case that is now in the Ombudsman was the result of the information that was provided by one of the directors of the Public Estates Authority. The extent of corruption in the military was first exposed by the Oakwood mutineers, young officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Department of Agriculture employees were the ones who provided the senate with the documents that served as basis for investigating the Fertilizer Scam.
The current national crisis from whence all these troubles pertaining to PP 1017 are rooted resulted from what are believed are the voices of Madame Arroyo and Comelec Commissioner Virgilio Garcillano discussing the manipulation of 2004 election results – the Garci tapes. Who were the sources of the Garci tapes? They were none other than the military personnel who were tasked to do it.
Carlos Conde in Davao Today speaks of blind bishops.
Dan Mariano says Senator Angara believes the country only has two choices: Charter change, or a junta.
The situation? Sylvia Mayuga expresses it best: we’re in dangerous hour.
In the blogosphere:
thirtysomething questions the economic claims of the administration.
Stepping on poop has an entry responding to a comment I made, and presenting his own view: discernment, not fence-sitting, is what he’s undertaking; strengthening institutions is his ultimate objective.
My responses are simple:
1. when the child yelled, “the Emperor has not clothes,” the fairy tale did not end with the child being hauled off to jail for sedition. The child opened the eyes of the adults. Suffer the little children -and oppositionists.
2. I find it impossible to strengthen any public institution when the head of state and head of government represents everything institutions ought not to stand for.
3. I find it a bit puzzling that the loudest denunciations against self-righteousness have such a shrill self-righteous element to them (and I am not referring to anyone in particular, just a general, noticeable, trend in argumentation). It is to be assumed all people are sinners, and yet it should not be a matter of consequence who is doing the denouncing -just as, to use an analogy from religion, it would seem illogical to prevent any kind of redemption for the reason that all human beings are marked with Adam and Eve’s original sin. Yet that seems to me much of the basis for present arguments. Though I’m not religious, the imagery of scripture remains powerful: Christ kept company with tax collectors and prostitutes and publicans; it was the “rule of law” and “don’t bother the established order” types who crucified him; it was Jesus who lost his temper in the Temple; and it was the Christ’s mission to redeem humanity despite the obvious flaws of his disciples: they denied him, abandoned him, misunderstood him, betrayed him, etc., Adam & Eve started the whole mess, theologically speaking. Yet redemption had to take place. So does denouncing a crime, presuming one’s a sinner, make one self-righteous? Only if one does not believe in sin, or if one denies the possibility either of redemption or that the flawed are not only capable of improvement, but must constantly seek perfection. This is not self-righteousness; it is the pilgrim’s progress.
this is as much a response to this comment by Roy Choco, which asks if opposition by its very nature doesn’t demand total subservience to a cause. My reply to the question is that in this blog and in my writings, I try to spend as much time explaining why I think certain things to be so, as I espousing and actively defending what I think needs to be done. All I have are my words to either convince you, antagonize you, or best of all, simply make you think so your own advocacies are thought through. I reserve a particular kind of scorn for the official defenders of the side I oppose; but then again I tend to be skeptical of whoever is in officialdom, whether I support them at the time or not. I am surer about what needs to be fixed, than as to the specifics of how to fix it: it only takes one person to know a machine is broken, but often a team of mechanics is required to get the motor running again. And I have always advocated here, and elsewhere, that efforts geared towards achieving consensus should be supported. Though we don’t always have the luxury of debating the finer points when the full armaments of the state are brought out to menace the other-minded. I ask you consider the position I adhere to, one of many; if you agree, fine; if you don’t, I’d very much like to understand why not -who knows, it could help me improve my position and possibly lead me to accepting yours. That is, if you want to debate and discuss.
There continue to be epistolary responses to the open letter by (a further response to the reactions to his letter, titled How That Letter Came to Be, was commented on by Rina Jimenez-David in her column):
Manuel Buencamino pens a peppery riposte.
blog@AWBHoldings.com reflects on what M. Scott Peck calls “the people of the lie.”
Baratillo books cinema @ cubao replies to Ausero’s critics with a fable.
Demosthenes’ Game questions assumptions that democracy good, fascism bad; he espouses a utilitarian attitude towards democracy.
Three day student sit-in in France, dispersed with tear gas. What a Filipino turn of events.
Blurry Brain reads Horacio de la Costa, SJ. A great entry-
Heraclitus once said that “character is destiny”. We are most likely in this rut because our character dictated it so. I’ve had enough of pundits who write endlessly about what needs to be done for this country. Everybody knows in his heart what has to be done. The question is if we have the stomach for it. We are too self-indulgent, too forgiving of offenses done to us, too quick to allow others to put one up over us, too content or laidback to have the obssession needed to do whatever it takes to nail down an objective, and too quick to sacrifice the good of the nation for shallow compassion for individuals.
Errata: JV Rufino emailed me to correct something I wrote about editorial procedures at Inq7.net: As a rule we don’t use anonymous sources. There have been exceptions, but in in those cases, the desk know who the source is, the information is corroborated through other means (and I don’t mean another anonymous source), and there is an overriding public interest in the information.
A reader of this blog (number cruncher, in a comment) notes I got the translation of “tolle, lege” used in my column last Thursday, wrong; I remembered it to mean, “listen, read”; it actually means “pick up, and read.”