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Dec 07

Steamrolling to victory

House Resolution 1450 was adopted at around 5 in the morning, without amendments. The House of Representatives will therefore send notice to the Senate, and convene as a constituent assembly on Monday at 10 am. Debates on proposals to amend the Constitution will begin then. Newsbreak has an exclusive report on the concrete form the proposals will take. All sides expect the issues to be joined at the Supreme Court soon. The Senate has decided to decline participation. And the parliament of the streets may just reconvene.

As was widely expected, Reynato Puno is the new Chief Justice.

My column for today is Nocturnal deliberations. In his column, Alex Magno presses upon the brows of the majority a crown of genius.

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  1. Jeg

    So cvj, you see the reason for my sanguinity. It will take the great-great-great grandmother of all lobbies to make the justices of the SC vote against logic. 🙂

  2. artz

    Also, it`s really very depressing and sad to note that most of the CONgressmen who were at the forefront of this brazen and selfish act were those from Bicol whose constituents were either dying, dead or missing. Up to now, we can`t still establish contact with our relatives from Bicol because the communication lines are still not working 100%. Would it be too much then to ask from these Bicolano congressmen to make the rounds in their respective districts and assure those worried relatives that they are doing fine and alright or that they are not part of those dead and/or missing?

  3. DJB

    Thanks CVJ, I guess the principled position is that the Congress can still decide “voting jointly” or “voting separately” as the MODE of voting subject to the RULE of three fourths majority wins that the Constitution mandates. Neither MODE is unconstitutional because EITHER mode can still obey the RULE.

    But the method of choosing the MODE must be done by concurrence of both Houses of the Congress.

    Therefore, there is nothing unconstitutional about the House wanting it to be voting jointly.

    What is illegal is for them to UNILATERALLY establish the mode without the concurrence of the Senate.

    The real deep reason i guess is that it is The Congress that may exercise constituent power, not some arbitrary collection of its Members who are trying to mimic the form and substance of a Constitutional Convention. If Section 105 were restored, there would in fact be no PROCEDURAL problems with the House, as the House, proposing amendments to or revision of the Constitution. As soon as the Senate concurs, the Joint and Concurrent Resolution that results goes immediately to Comelec for plebiscite and ratification. No need to assemble some mythic assembly called a Constituent Assembly. The Congress, in its normal configuration, without magically mutating itself into something else, may propose changes to the constitution.

    In the coming historic decision Senate vs. House, these fundamentals of democracy will be exposed in a horrible clinic of the fistula in anno that this Con-Ass is turning out to be.

  4. Bencard

    DBJ:
    “all members of the Congress” should mean just that – all individual members of both the House of Representatives and the Senate. The language of the Constitution on the matter is as plain as it could get. No esoteric interpretation (or “contrual”, if you prefer), or “hair-splitting” is necessary, as I see it.

    If the senate chose not to participate, you are right; the lower house cannot compel its attendance. But the Law can and the Law is what the SC declares as such in a proper case brought before it.

    I believe that, until invalidated by SC, HR 1450 is binding and cannot be ignored or “snubbed” by the senate, whatever its members’ motivation is for doing so. The senators sought their office and took an oath to discharge their duties faithfully regardless of personal or political interests. They cannot pick and choose when, or under what condition, they would perform as members of Congress.

    If the SC upholds the validity of the House’s resolution, either by declining jurisdiction or by adjudicating on the merits,I believe the “snubbing” senators are flirting with the possibility of a charge of dereliction of duty punishable under Article 234 of the Revised Penal Code, among others.

  5. DJB

    Bencard,
    The issue you raise is impt to understand. Can the individual Senator “choose” to participate in a vote by the House of Representatives, like the one on HR1450 to convene a ConAss?

    We do not need a Supreme Court decision to tell us the answer: NO!

    That means that the House violated its own rule that “a simple majority of all the Members of Congress” can convene the ConAss before proposing amendments or revision.

    Why? Because Senators are barred by the Constitution from voting on HR1450, for or against! Therefore, there was never any vote among ALL the members of the Congress whether to convene or not, in violation of the House’s own New Rule!

    But HR1450 is not in and of itself unconstitutional. It is merely a House Resolution, nothing more nothing less. The House cannot compel the Senate to come to a flag raising ceremony.

    I don’t think the Senate will be stupid enough to assail HR1450. But anything else the House does based on it which might usurp for example the powers of The Congress could become the justiciable controversy.

    If for example one House of the Congress starts proposing amendments and scheduling plebiscites or trying to cancel elections, after forming such a RUMP SESSION of the Congress, then the Supreme Court can open its Kindergarten Class on parliamentary democracy.

    Look, even the Lemmings have the Numbers…that’s not reason for them to rush off the ravine above the uncharted waters of the ocean, I tell ya!

  6. sue

    What future awaits us?

  7. Meds C

    Has anyone else noticed where the various disasters strike us as of late. Beginning with the Pangasinan SARS of years ago, disasters seem to follow the constituencies of those who are too hell bent on their own interests. Another typhoon will be doing a landfall soon, and if it goes to Iloilo, I wouldn’t be too surprised. Perhaps someone should do a research and analysis.

  8. Shaman of Malilipot

    Villafuerte’s argument that the Senate has not been ignored in the convening of the Con-Ass because the senators were included in the base used for computing the 3/4 majority vote is fallacious. The constitutional provision that allows Congress to convene itself into a Constituent Assembly is premised on the principle that both the Senate and the House will go into it freely and voluntarily. But what we are seeing is that the House is dragging the Senate into it against the latter’s will. So, it’s not just a matter of mechanically deriving 3/4 of “all the members of Congress”, but before anything else the respective consent of both the Senate and the House must first be freely given.

  9. Shaman of Malilipot

    I still harbor the belief that the Supreme Court will rule based on the principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law on the case that will be filed before it assailing the Con-Ass as it is being constituted. My belief has been bouyed by the statement of Chief Justice Puno that the people’s initiative and the Con-Ass are like apples and oranges. Just because he voted for PI doesn’t mean that he will also vote for Con-Ass. He further said that his decisions are not conditioned on who appointed him.

    I’m optimistic that the Puno Court will maintain the independence and rectitude of the Panganiban Court.

  10. Jon M

    Shouting out loud what you believe (whatever it is), is doing your duty as citizen. Make yourself be heard! If not, your default vote goes to Con-Ass of Arroyo and de Venecia.

  11. manuelbuencamino

    DJB,

    Tama ka nga. House resolution lang yan. Hindi joint resolution. The title sez it all

  12. john marzan

    I heart Alex Magno.

    di ba si alex magno yong pakialamero at usisero sa dating abs-cbn political satire na “abangan ang susunod na kabanata” ? nagtatanong lang po.

    LMAO! Sammy Lagmay and Alex Magno, separated at birth?

  13. The Ca t

    re the new chief justice reynato puno. how is he related, is he related, to anc’s puno and the local government’s puno? thanks.

    Dong Puno is a cousin, so is Ronaldo.

    The Puno family where he belonged are mostly in the government due to their qualifications.

    Ched Chairman Carlito Puno is the brother.

  14. baycas

    i think the senate is in no way compelled to accept HOR’s invitation (in the form of HR 1450 or now named HR 197). the senate has to craft its own resolution to convene a con-ass and if paralleled to HR 197 it can now be volted in with the latter forming a joint and concurrent resolution of ALL members of the Congress.

    as i’ve pointed above, i find the HR 197 somewhat a trick to make it appear that the senate would be IN on this con-ass thing…when in actuality the senate is not a party to the HOR’s sleight of hand. it’s just a lure, or aptly a ruse, to invite even a handful of senator-allies and thus make it appear that ALL members of the Congress participated in the convened constituent assembly!

    having a senate wary of the patriotic intent of convening a con-ass at this point in time (especially when the HOR’s sleeve is up showing the self-preservation and self-perpetuation cards), i don’t think a REAL con-ass will ever be convened.

    this is a long shot but Section 105 of the House Rules should be restored and from there start the proposals for amendments to or revisions of the constitution. i may probably bet “all in” (as in a poker game) in favor of cha-cha deliberations. but then again i am already sold to the idea that only a constitutional convention is the one and only mode to change our charter.

    if perhaps a con-ass is really to be resorted to…then push through with the midterm elections and let it be known to all voters that senators and representatives to be elected in may 2007 may soon be transformed to assume a second role as component elements of the constituent assembly who will propose amendments/revisions. in so-doing, we can also eliminate the third-termer railroaders of today!!! this, i believe, is expediency…

  15. horrified

    ah… the outrage of “civil society” and similar elite and intelligentsia types. oh please. it’s easy for you guys to wax eloquently (some not so, hahaha)but really, this is the leadership you and your ilk, your antecedents, brought about, whether wittingly or unwittingly. all that kneejerk outrage and yet nothing has been built by you guys for the country. where are the local versions of the rockefellers and bill gateses? and don’t point to me those public relations projects fronting as philanthropic foundations. where is the local wendy kopp and volunteer teachers for the countryside? please naman. madaling tumalak sa blog. madaling magpunta sa kingreso at tumili dun. tumigil na ang mga self-righteous do-nothings. if we got to this height point, you think congress is selfish? hah. look in the mirror.

  16. horrified

    ah… the outrage of “civil society” and similar elite and intelligentsia types. oh please. it’s easy for you guys to wax eloquently (some not so, hahaha)but really, this is the leadership you and your ilk, your antecedents, brought about, whether wittingly or unwittingly. all that kneejerk outrage and yet nothing has been built by you guys for the country. where are the local versions of the rockefellers and bill gateses? and don’t point to me those public relations projects fronting as philanthropic foundations. where is the local wendy kopp and volunteer teachers for the countryside? please naman. madaling tumalak sa blog. madaling magpunta sa kingreso at tumili dun. tumigil na ang mga self-righteous do-nothings. we got to this point because you guys didnt do enough. puros talak lang. you think congress is selfish? hah. look in the mirror.

  17. anna de brux

    Well, looks like JdV lost his balls and has backed out of his Senate-less Con Ass, so Ellen reports in her blog.

    JdV promised to leave politics if this Con Ass crap of his fails to materialize. Well, we’ll see if he has the balls to stick by his promise now that Gloria kicked him in the teeth.

  18. anna de brux

    Hvrds,

    Hahahah! How right you are!

    “GMA is being set up to be the savior. Just watch her turn around and slay the con-ass dragon.”

    You were spot on!

    But not without a bit of prodding by INC so it seems.

  19. Bencard

    horrified: i couldn’t agree with you more. what is bizarre to me is not so much the action of the lower house as the reaction of the usual hypocrites and cynics, masquerading as moralists or do-right intellectuals. Our’s is a nation of useless talkers and mostly ignorant belly-achers who are easy prey to sleek preachers and demagogues with their less-than-altruistic agenda.. These pathetic souls are threatening yet another “parliament of the street”. I doubt very much if most of them have any clue as to why they would be marching and risking their lives and limbs for other than what their exploiting “leaders” would have them believe.

  20. baycas

    so, this is another one of their trial balloons?

    sayang…public outrage again simmered down…ssssssss…

  21. Diego K. Guerrero

    The usual Malacanang dirty trick, YO-YO diplomacy has no aftereffects in sidelining the JDV fraudulent Con-ass. The damage is done after the rape of democracy by Arroyo-De Venecia. They are only delaying the imminent ouster of bogus President Gloria Arroyo. The die is cast, people power uprising is unstoppable. Only time can tell.

  22. justice league

    Horrified,

    And what should your referred people see when they look in the mirror beyond a taxpayer staring them in the face?

  23. Phil Cruz

    Ahh..a cheater, a liar and a thief..would always be a user. So she used the floppy eared one and is tossing him into the trash bin? Again? Like she did to the Tabako? Who’s going to be next? The Prosperous Twins?

  24. Bencard

    I may be naive, but to me, whether or not PGMA supports Constituent Assembly has no bearing on its necessity and legality. It is an Act of a co-equal branch and its sole responsibility. I think there is nothing novel in the threat to make her the “issue” on this one. The GMA-haters, puerile opposition, and opportunistic predators have done it again and again, and will continue doing it to no avail.

    The majority of the Filipino people, despite contrary claims of the opposition, is sick and tired of hate assemblies. The idiscriminate misuse of “people power” has eroded its value as an instrument of positive change. It appears that people are now more discerning of the hidden agenda of its self-annointed “leaders”.

    Beware of the devil who quotes the scriptures to ensnare the weak. Watch out for the clay-footed impostors who preach “morality”, while lining their pockets with treasures.

  25. hvrds

    Mike and Gloria and creatures who belong to the lucky sperm club. Gloria manuevered her way through Joe Con into government service. The GTEB became her milking cow together with Mike and her Dad’s most trusted go to guy Abes. It was here thast the relationship between Villafuerte, Carpio and the Mike and Gloria tandem started.

    Quota selling and the bonded warehouse shenanigans cemented her relationship with Donald Dee and Sergio Luis Ortiz.

    Fast forward to the present you have the same personalites trying to fashion a sembalance of credibility in governence when all the time these people were nothing but predators and plunderers using the arbitrage of discretionary power in trade and fiscal policy to fashion and commoditize power.

    They have no principles or religion except that of plunder.

    You raise the temperature and watch them jump. It appears that they did not forsee the the rise in temperature due to the con-ass so now they will move to cool things down.

    This bunch would sell their souls for fame and fortune.

    On the constitutional legal level you will have all the legal luminaries masturbate temselves dry arguing voer this but this is plainly and simply a power grab for an autocratic government.

    This idea of free speech, free press and the spread of communication technologies make it difficult for tyrants or tyrants to be but still one has to be alert as weak state institutions give an undue bruden and opportunity on those who believe in freedom and liberty but life was not meant to be a bed of roses.

    I do not know but whenever I read Alex Magno or hear him on TV he reminds me so much of a cross between the greedy Goering and Geobbels of Hilter fame. He and his master Joe Almonte should pull up stakes and retire to fishing or some less intellectual pursuit like thinking on what to have for breakfast each morning.

    Their horse is a lemon. She has always been a spoiled child and a greedy and ambitious one at that. All she has is a fantastic memory for details but somehow she has never learned how to connect the dots. She truly is her father’s daughter.

  26. Bencard

    hvrds, wow, that was quite an indictment! Are you sure you are not Alan P. Cayetano? I hope you have the goods to back up your allegations. You see, internet and blogs provide no immunities from defamation (especially in PI where it is a crime), although they seem to give anonymity, albeit temporarily. Manolo, I hope you are taking note of this.

  27. Fidel Umaga

    Gentlemen,

    The time for talking is over and the time to act has come. Ang gagaling pa naman niniyong lahat sa debatihan. It is a total waste of what we believe is right if we fail to put into action our words.

  28. jm

    Go!
    Laban na
    Handa na kami
    Saan at kailan ang pagtitipon ay naka-kasa na
    Kita-kita tayo, sama-sama tayo
    Magkaisa para sa Demokrasya
    Ipaglaban nating ang Saligang Batas

  29. anna de brux

    Way to go hvrds! One goddamn good indictment you got there!

  30. Aames

    Re: “Mike and Gloria and creatures who belong to the lucky sperm club. Gloria manuevered her way through Joe Con into government service. The GTEB became her milking cow together with Mike and her Dad’s most trusted go to guy Abes. It was here thast the relationship between Villafuerte, Carpio and the Mike and Gloria tandem started. x x x”

    You had some valid points. Unfortunately, the way you presented your points – personalistic and vitriolic – were, in my view, unnecessary, uncalled for and detracted from your points.

  31. james

    ang iingay ng mga talanka…
    —-huwag makisabay….sa mga talanka….sa pekeng bayani…pekeng panindigan…

  32. anna de brux

    Sparks,

    Re, “I remember Palace pekingese Alex Magno asking….
    Right on the mark you are.”

    Who likened Alex Magno to a Pekingese? Good grief, my Pekingese ain’t gonna like being likened to that mongreal at all!

  33. justice league

    James,

    Your statement seems so appropriate a description for the majority Congressmen with their “viva voce” vote.

  34. Bokyo

    Bencard said…
    “The majority of the Filipino people, despite contrary claims of the opposition, is sick and tired of hate assemblies. The idiscriminate misuse of “people power” has eroded its value as an instrument of positive change. It appears that people are now more discerning of the hidden agenda of its self-annointed “leaders”.”

    Nakuryente kasi sa ginawa ng grupo ni GMA noon, kaya ngayon si GMA pa rin ang nakikinabang.

    But I still believe that people’s capability for revolt is good for us to guard against excesses and abuses. Kahit sa pansarili natin, kung handa kang manuntok kapag ginawan ng kalokohan igagalang ka.

    Sangayon ako na di dapat magpadalos dalos at gamitin ang pagaalsa sa tamang panahon. Kaya lang hindi ako sangayon kung sasabihing mali ang mag people power ngayon dahil wala namang dahilan. Kaya tayo inaabuso eh. Ang nangyayari kasi ngayon pinapalabas nila na mali ang palagi na lamang mag-alsa. Pero hangat may pang-aabuso kahit siguro lagi tayong mag-alsa ay mas makakabuti sa atin kaysa manahimik kahit na lamang.

  35. hvrds

    It is very apparent many of you were infants or kids during the financial crisis of th early 80’s tht led to the downfall of Marcos. Almost overnite the peso crashed losing its entire value. The old CB led by Jobo then raised the overnite lending rate to 40% per anum and issued theinfamous Jobo bills paying that much interest to attract foreign capital.The worst economic crisis then followed by the assasination of Ninoy. The names Bancom, Dewey Dee and almost all banks were down. By 86 Marcos was gone.

    The effects of that crisis has deepened and created the economic system and structure that we have today. Filipinos leaving to support their families. The youth then which are most of you guys today are now paying those bills.

    Guess what the youth of this country is facing in the future with more debts ands crooks like this trying to institutionalize their power.

    Tkae a good look at Alex Magno theorize on how foreign capital would be good for the country in as much as it is a good counterpoint to political power.

    The major stockholder of the Export Import Bank that was allowed to take over the Urban Bank is none other than James Riaddy who was indicted by the U.S.government for illegal campaign contributions to Bill Clinton. Our friends Donald Dee and Serge Luis Ortiz are his front man here. During the crisis in Indonesia both the Riaddy families and the Salim families were chased out of Indonesia for being cronies of Suharto. The same Salim family who Manny Pangilinan works for.

    Everything I wrote has been published and is common knowledge during and after that tumultuous period.

    Big business usually owns government. In weak countries trying to become states they are the government.

    This kind of instability will not be good for big business and just you watch things simmer down. They want to open up the economy but they got too greedy by trying to corner the benefits of that move by narrowing the power brokers who will gain from selling the country out to foreign capital.

    There are billions of dollars to e made from the privatization of the Philippine economy. The fight amongst the lumpen elite of this country is who will be in the forefront to gain.

    It is not about principles or ideals it is simply about plunder.

  36. Bencard

    “Everything I wrote has been published and is common knowledge during and after that tumultuous period.” hrvds.

    Not everything that is published is true, nor everything that is “common knowledge”, except, perhaps, for the gullible who doesn’t know any better. Prior publication and alleged common knowledge are no defense in libel, and libel is defined as a “malicious imputation of a crime or a vice or defect” in writing.

    A malicious repetition of a “gossip” may be libelous.

    I really tip my hat to you, hrvds, for being so bold, but if you are maligning a person just because you hate him/her or you don’t like his/her politics, you should be prepared to face its consequences. Being able to vent your spite is not worth it.

  37. jm

    hvrds,

    Good take. About plunder: Art Yap, Gloria’s new Sec for Agricuture, has recently signed 8 big contracts with Red China to virtually take-over hundred’s of thousands of prime agricultural land. Large-scale mining by foreigners is going full blast.

    Plunder of our patrimony is at high-gear since GMA took over.

  38. james

    justice league,

    could only smile with your “honest” assessment. but only the leftists and commuists are happy with the noisy talanka.

  39. watchful eye

    I really tip my hat to you, Bencard, for being so bold, but if you are sucking up to a person just because you adore him/her or you are dead sold to his/her politics, you should be prepared to face its consequences. Being able to vent your spite is not worth it.

  40. markista

    sigh, masyadong masama ako kung ihahalintulad ko sila to some animals.

    those animals are not that bad. even pigs will get angry if they would be compared to some solons.

  41. Bencard

    watchful eye: watch this, don’t be a “trying hard copycat”. If you cannot hack it, you don’t have to say anything, but there is something I can recommend you should do… but I;m not telling.

  42. freewheel

    hvrds,

    should charges be levelled against you for repating what is common knowledge; on GTEB, on thieving & others, you can count on my support.

    its always a lovely pleasure reading your takes and solid analyses on past and current events. more, please.

  43. justice league

    James,

    Hmmmmm. Now why would the Communists and leftists be happy with the “noisy” majority Congressmen?

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