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Dec 20

Pichay to DPWH

The papers report the President’s about face and renewed determination to pursue amendments, while Sec. Michael Defensor plays interference and is trying to play good cop again.

Archbishop Oscar Cruz is fed up and thinks a proper rally should be planned.

Marichu Villanueva reports possible cabinet appointments:

There are very strong indications that third-termer Rep. Prospero Pichay Jr. of Surigao del Sur is up for a possible posting as new secretary of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH). The incumbent DPWH secretary Hermogenes Ebdane Jr. is being groomed to become the new Defense secretary.

She also suggests Bro. Mike Velarde shafted the bishops:

Given these usual changes in key Executive posts, there is reportedly so much “sniping” taking place as some influential groups try to cash in their chips after the feared “people power” crowd did not materialize in the “prayer rally” at Luneta last Sunday. The Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) did not join it, while the El Shaddai charismatic movement of Bro. Mike Velarde merely deployed an obviously token delegation.

Newbsreak reports scuttebutt on the next Supreme Court appointment:

Two names have been floated for the post: Solicitor General Eduardo Nachura, and chief government corporate counsel Agnes Devanadera. Both are not just sympathetic to charter change; they actively campaigned for amendments at some point in their careers in public service.

My Arab News column for this week is Arroyo Should Not Misread Opposition to Charter Change. The Inquirer editorial does a post mortem on the Sunday rally and points out how the bishops played into the administration’s hands. Dan Mariano explains why he thinks the House proposal for amendments isn’t actually dead.

Jarius Bondoc hopes Rep. Abraham Mitra’s constitutional convention bill will receive legislative support. On the surface, the bill sounds reasonable enough, but even public openness to a convention sees to be waning in view of the administration’s zigzagging attitudes to amendments. (See EC Salcedo’s online proposal for a convention).

Manuel Buencamino combines typhoons, rape stories, and winking bishops into an allegory of modern times. Mike Tan has an interesting column on baksheesh.

In Thailand, apparently there was a stock market crash, and things have been complicated by controversy surrounding the drafting of a new constitution. Tulsathit Taptim considers one proposal, to have a non-elected prime minister, sheer lunacy.

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31 comments

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  1. DJB

    No one understands the technology of People Power better than its most brilliant practitioner and most appreciative beneficiary. Without a flashpoint to make people angry enough to take the Law into their own hands and throw it out the window, the Mob cannot be convened, the kindling has been peed on. This proves that not even the Church can summon the Genie from the Bottle to put PDI and rest of the People Power pushers out of their misery with a Regime Changing pill. That misery being to wake up in the mornings with Democracy’s head in the bed after that 2001-night-stand when they put GMA in power.

    My amateur psychoanalysis is that they want to redeem People Power by showing it can remove her too. They still don’t see how the Disappearing Man Trick was done on 20 January 2001–the Guy in the Black Robes swearing in the Girl in the Gray Dress was not CHIEF JUSTICE hilario davide, but his Evil Twin and Double, the Godfather of Zion.

  2. Jeg

    Playing with the Supreme Court appointments is dangerous. For GMA, that is.

  3. DJB

    I think people on this blog already understand why JDV and the entire House of Representatives can never validly ACT as The Congress, not even in unanimity assembled.

    But I wonder if everyone understands why Hilario Davide was also NOT the Supreme Court on 20 Jan 2001, but an unindicted co-conspirator and principal ACTOR in the political event that is the root of the present evil.

    What justiciable case was before the Supreme Court on Saturday 20 January 2001 that would legitimately have brought the Chief Justice to a demonstration in front of a religious shrine?

    None!

    Instead of convening the impeachment trial and calling back the derelict-in-their-duty prosecutors like Joker, what did Davide do?

    He shafted the Constitution. He reneged on his sacred oath. He violated his promise to uphold the Law. He spurned his bounden duty and abjured Justice by violating the most sacred rule of the Judiciary–that there can be no justice rendered with the cold neutrality of an impartial Judge.

    He was not that, not even close, in fact its opposite. Yet look at who lionizes and idolizes him today. The people who think it was the crowd chanting and clapping and their People Power, that made the President disappear down the Pasig and instantly reappear, sex-changed, in front of Mama Mary.

    It may seem to most that this is all moot and academic. But we must not forget the Chief Justice today is the ponente of those hideous decisions that, like Javellana v. Executive Secretary, are puzzling a whole new generation of law students with their bald illogicalities and amazing conceptual inventions (“constructed, err, constructive resignation.”)

    Puno and Davide will stink like Javellana, unless…

    (I hope people see that this is no defense of Erap the Plunderer, but of the Constitution.)

  4. rego

    DJB,

    I really can not undertsand your hatred against Davide. I believe Davide swearing in Gloria was a unanimous decision by all the Justices. He was the one who administer the oath because he was the cheif. Now if there is a conspiracy. It should have been between Gloria and the entire SC not just with Davide alone, which to me is impossible…

  5. DJB

    Right you are Rego, and if you look at their Minute Resolution allowing Davide to go on Saturday, and on Monday reaffirming the same, the reason for the President’s term ending was PERMANENT DISABILITY! Hahahaha! I saw him on TV just the other day. Talk about trying facts. They didn’t even get THAT right. hahahah. aaaargh!

  6. DJB

    Rego, Estrada v. Arroyo opens with “At stake is the Presidency of the PHilippines…” Yet the Court as you claim gave a unanimous vote within 34 minutes from 11:26 am when Carpio’s Fax from GMA inviting them to swear her in, until 12:00 noon when Davide left for the Edsa Shrine.

    Not even the House Majority chacha choochoo was faster than Davide the speeding bullet…straight at the heart of the Constitution!

  7. DJB

    What Edsa Dos proves, is that even sanctimonious Civil Society and their Press avatars are just as capable of JDV and House Majority to employ any means against the Constitution, as long as it achieves an end with which they agree. The end justifies the means. That is why EDSA Dos is also the inspiration for the House Majority’s attempted putsch upon the Constitution. They learned it at Davide’s knee.

  8. mlq3

    if memory serves me right, around 11:30 am was when the 12 wheeler truck appeared on mendiola, after the police had cut and run and retreated past mendiola bridge. i remember the roar as the cowd pushed forward and the police ran helter-skelter before regrouping. that was the time when the crowd that had marched on the palace was poised to burst through the cops and the psg would have been faced with the decision to fire on the protesters or not.

  9. mlq3

    djb- the logical conclusion of edsa 2 would have been resign all and a new constitution, that is what the sc et al. frantically tried to head off.

  10. Jeg

    What Edsa Dos proves, is that even sanctimonious Civil Society and their Press avatars are just as capable of JDV and House Majority to employ any means against the Constitution,

    That’s why I think stacking the SC with loyalists is dangerous. The Con-ass coup attempt stoked the people’s indignation such that the sleeping spirit of people power was roused. It was only the people’s tenuous trust in the SC as an institution that prevented the dragon from waking. To tamper with this last line of defense of the constitution would provoke another EDSA2-style coup.

  11. Shaman of Malilipot

    I’m glad that Archbishop Oscar Cruz has called for a genuine protest rally. Last Sunday’s Luneta event should have been that, in the first place.

    The Bishops should now go all out and openly oppose GMA and her rape gang. Forget this bullshit about separation of Church and State. Separation of Church and State means that there should be no national religion and that religious doctrines are not enacted into laws. It also means that government does not dictate to the people what religious doctrines to embrace. But it doesn’t mean that clerics cannot fight evil political leaders.

    Bishops, get out of your palaces and go with the people. Cardinal Sin had shown you the way. And as the late Pope John Paul II always said, “Be not afraid.”

  12. ronin

    ang dami pa kasing restrictions iyong rally last sunday. na-constipate tuloy ang protesta. it should have been a protest rally, period. finally, bishop cruz hit the nail on the head: no quarters! take no prisoners!

  13. DJB

    mlq3,
    To prevent violence. That is the defense or rationalization given for the complete and utter disregard of the Constitution by the Chief Justice and the Supreme Court on Presidential succession. Indeed, that is also the best proof that any alleged resignation by Erap was extracted at the barrel of a gun, under extreme duress. We know from his own bragging that FG was ready to use violence on Erap, and had probably transmitted that threat. Moreover, the Left, which knew it had missed the boat in 1986, were at the docks, near that 12 wheeler truck you are talking about. But there is nothing the PSG could not have handled, and should have, if it had come to that. Edsa 3 posed a bigger, better organized threat on Malacanang, yet, was the level of violence there enough that we would deprive 12 million Filipinos of their democratic vote to have prevented it. Why did not Davide swear in Guingona then, when Edsa 3 threatened to turn violent, and did?

  14. Mike

    I, too, am raring for GMA & company to resume the railroading of Cha-Cha and thereby reignite the conflagration that they so desperately put out last week. If they fall into that trap, they will have only themselves to blame.

    Pride goeth before a fall. Get ready to RRRRRRRRRRRUUUUUUUUUMMMMMMMBLE!

  15. DJB

    We cannot avert our eyes from these “motions for reconsideration of Edsa 2” if we expect to impeach and try GMA next year with that Hanging Senate coming in and the House Membership being shuffled like a fresh deck of cards.

    EVERYTHING about EDSA 2 has to come out and be resolved at about the same time that the people settle accounts with GMA.

    I think Erap should run for the Senate, with the promise that on the day GMA is tried and convicted in the Senate, he will cast with his vote, a valid resignation from the Presidency that was stolen from the People and the Constitution by the Thief Justice, Hilario Davide. Puno can rewrite his own ponencia, and a beautiful book on the GMA trial, of which he may be the presiding Judge.

    We shall then have hit all the birds with all the stones, saved the Constitution, and have two former Presidents in jail with Daniel Smith. Web cam and all.

    How far is that distant shore………

    Merry Christmas, one and all!

    God save the Constitution!

  16. Carl

    mlq3 said: “In Thailand, apparently there was a stock market crash, and things have been complicated by controversy surrounding the drafting of a new constitution.”

    They’re in a quandary in Thailand because the junta is not making much headway.

    The stock market “crash” that occured yesterday was due to confusion over currency controls that the new government attempted to impose. Government was not too happy with the way the Thai baht has been appreciating lately vis a vis the U.S. dollar. This would make its export and tourism industry less competitive.

    But the currency controls were not very well thought out and were not well received. In the resulting confusion, there was a sell-out in the stock market which dropped by 15%. This caused the government to make an instant U-turn. The market in Thailand recovered somewhat today, after the government withdrew its controls. However, this has only added to more skepticism about the capabilities of the new government.

    At first, the Thai people gave the junta the benefit of the doubt. However, nothing much has improved since it took over. Investigations on Thaksin’s dealings have yielded nothing and it is expected that Thaksin will be exonerated in due time. The conflict with the Muslims has not abated. Thaksin remains the most popular person in Thailand, next to the King. I is said that if elections were held soon, Thaksin would win hands down.

  17. mlq3

    carl, sounds like post edsa dos philippines.

  18. Carl

    mlq3 said: “carl, sounds like post edsa dos philippines.”

    Ha! Ha! There may be some parallels, but there’s less decency on both sides of the fence in our part of the world. Thailand enjoys more stability because of the presence of the King. The monarchy is truly esteemed by the Thai people. In fairness, the monarchy has also behaved very respectably and hasn’t given any cause for concern (unlike the next generation of Windsors in England).

    Despite misgivings about the present regime, Thais will continue to cut some slack, if only to show respect for the King. After all, the King gave his implied endorsement to the coup. Even the King’s color (yellow) was used by Thaksin’s opponents during their protests.

    By way of explanation, the King’s color is yellow because, in Thailand, every day of the week is distinguished by a certain color. Monday is yellow. Friday is blue, etc. The King was born on a Monday, therefore his official color is yellow. Believe it or not, people in Thailand know the day of the week they were born, and the color which pertains to them. So every Monday in Thailand, you will see many people wearing yellow shirts or dresses. That is a gesture of homage to the King.

    However, despite the King’s popularity, Thaksin remains a revered political figure. There may have been some issues against him (still unsubstantiated), but Thaksin still did many good things for Thailand’s economy. And the Thais will not forget that so easily.

    If the parallel with the Philippines concerns Erap, I concede that he remains popular. But doing good things for the economy? . . . Not!!! That’s a big difference.

  19. anna de brux

    Mlq3, fellow commenters,

    My last comment for 2006 in Mlq3’s blog bearing absolutely no grudges nor hard feelings to anybody:

    I wish you all and your loved ones, a Merry, Merry Christmas and a truly Happy New Year.

  20. rego

    DJB, Manolo,

    I got you both so well this time. And I think the people understand you very well too. I still have soem more question to DJB but I will hold to it becuase it will not matter much.

    What really matter to me is that I believe people know better this time. That no matter how the opposition ask them to do people power out of the so many scandals allegedly commited by Gloria they are not moving. And no matter how the opposition and the media sensationalized them. People just dont want any shortcuts anymore because that only results to more chaos.

    I agree that the logical conclusion of EDSA2 should have been the resumption of Impeachment Court. Erap should have been properly convicted in that court and only after that should Gloria assume the presidency. Now this the reason why I dont like people to be so emotional about all the scandals and misbehaviour that is coming our way. Even worst media people like you feeding hatred and other negative emotions to them. What the media should do is to bring or expound all the issues to the people and give suggestions on what we should logically do as nation and in a most sober way.

    And before any group call any peopel power or any civil action, all the plan of action and implementation strategies should be in place and decided by the majority if not unanimously.

    I remember fully well that the debate in so many forum is not really more on keeping Gloria but on how to get a replacement that can do better than her and be installed in a proper manner. Although constitutionally there is Noli but not everybody agrees to it . Personally I believe he is not ready for it expereince wise. He has just got into public life just too soon. And getting him to suceed Gloria is woudl be even be more disastrous . Lets face it we dont know Noli that much yet and it really very hard to put our thrust on him that easy. And I believe he himself personally believe this. Plus the fact that there is also a protest in Electroal Tribunal against him filed by Loren. So his winning the vice presidency is also in question.

    Manolo replied to my questions in the other thread and enumerated the achievements of attributable to oppositions actions. I agree on those. However I dont agree that all the methods that were resulted by the opposition is necessary to achieved those. The bangayans name calling, mud throwings, morality contest, and even the rallies that resulted to horrendous traffic and subjected the commuters to so much misereies are not really necessary.

    We all know that all those gains were achieved through the SC decisions. So why not just go to SC everytime we have issue against Gloria.

    As a matter of fact Manolo, I dont give much credit to the opposition all those gains that you enumerated. I will give credit more to the “apathetic” sector, the silent revolutionaries, the great undecided. Because those gains will never be achieved had these sector joined the oppositions in the streets. The issues may never reached the supreme court and were decided on the streets if the apathetic sector joined the opposition in the streets. It was these sector who soberly insisted that everything should be settled in the proper forum. Had these sector joined the opposition GOD knows where we are by now….It was these sector who made it happened more than the opposition. I still rememebr that I replied to you Manolo on my I insistence on using the proper forum.

    Now I do agree that the agree that the impeachment efforts should continue after the 2007 election. However I am so worried what the oppsoition is promoting. I am woorried that we will end just having a senators at congressman na kahit sino sino na lang basta ba alam natin na against Gloria….

    Merry Christmas din sa inyong lahat….
    (Yeey!!!! finally I will be free of these computer by tom, malilibre na ako sa babysitting chores mamaya eh. Oh yes kaya andaming kung post dahil grounded po ako dito sa bahay)

  21. Chabeli

    Hsppy Christmas to all !

  22. vic

    “The monarchy is truly esteemed by the Thai people. In fairness, the monarchy has also behaved very respectably and hasn’t given any cause for concern (unlike the next generation of Windsors in England).”

    The reason why the Queen too smart not to hand the crown to the the Heir, because she Herself doesn’t want to see the crumbling of the Windsor Castle. The Post Queen Elizabeth II Monarchy will be an interesting era. Pretty soon the Monarch of Windsor will only have England as the Kingdom.

  23. Bafil

    Rego,
    I don’t see anything wrong with organizing street protests that complement the other, more official ways of dealing with public grievances, like appealing to SC or filing an impeachment complaint in Batasan, which you seem to prefer. Vox populi vox Dei, di ba?

    Carl, vic,
    I realize that King Bhomipol is universally revered in Thailand, however Queen Elizabeth is probably cherished more by the outside world than the Brits themselves and rightly so, if I may impolitely say. I mean, this is 21st century, why should people in fully functioning democracies be suppporting such anachronistic concepts as hereditary rule of certain “noble” families?

    Everybody,
    have a wonderful Christmas and if you find it too hard to wait for your Xmas presents, here is a little one for everybody – the latest addition to this virtual community’s collective efforts to enrich the blogosphere with some meaningful debate:

    http://inblumentrittsshoes.blogspot.com

  24. inidoro ni emilie

    djb,

    that is why i never believed in the spirit of edsa 2.

  25. inidoro ni emilie

    rego,

    “Although constitutionally there is Noli but not everybody agrees to it.”

    choose: personality or constitutionality?

    choose: personality or legitimacy?

  26. baycas

    djb, lawyer alan paguia’s suspension must be lifted soon.

    mlq3, yes, gloria’s doing the hokey-pokey…rather than dancing the cha cha.

  27. george

    manolo: re thailand in post-edsa 2 philippines scenario

    no same-same, as thais would say it. for one thing, they’re less ‘pasaway’ than us pinoys. when their king gave his implied support to gen. sonthi, thaksin’s camp became as meek as lambs. they might just be biding their time but at least they didn’t launch a counter-coup which would have led to violence.

    their military also apparently learned from their past adventures and they proved to be more ‘polite’ this time. at first, my family and i thought we’d be at risk here but imagine our surprise to meet soldiers with yellow armbands holding flowers and civilians offering food to them. at libre pa-picture pa! this scene looks more like edsa 1 to me. 🙂

    thais also gave the junta some sort of honeymoon period to prove themselves.

    to carl: well, what can we expect from a group of generals? their coup was able to break the impasse last september, but they must be learning now that governing is a far cry from overthrowing a government :). what they did to the baht appreciation problem was akin to using a sledgehammer to break an egg.

    re the thai royal family: yeah i agree, the king enjoys more popularity (and reverence) than the windsors. for one thing, the chakri dynasty doesn’t make social goofs as england’s royal family. but looking beyond propaganda, it appears the king is really concerned about his people and does a lot to help them.

    there are some apprehension among thais though to the issue of succession. the crown prince apparently is not that popular unlike his sister, the crown princess, maha sirindhorn, who thais see as her father’s intellectual heir.

  28. watchful eye

    Gloria doing a hokey-pokey? Maybe.

    Or the Queen Bukol hunkered down in the bunker (read: she hid under the bed) at the first signs of the charge. Climbing up and realizing the enemy advance did not even take place, she drew her sword at hinampas ang hangin to impress upon her leery toadies the panicky flight to the hole was tactical.

  29. mlwnag

    The problem is that Singaporeans and HK businessmen are moving their businesses and investments out of Thailand after Thaksin was ousted. These investors are propping up Baht to make most out of their investments they are selling. The government then put currency restriction which causes the crash.

    Since OFW money flowing into Philippines is at 1 billion USD per month which is in cash, any market disturbance will not affect much. Rising peso might hurt export industry but can compensate the less dollar cost of raw material and energy.

    Rising peso, increasing international reserve, decreasing debt and increasing trust of OFWs to present government in managing their money can push Cha-cha to a higher level.

    Opposition may lose their seats in the coming May election. OFW will be a power in the next election since they can influence the families they are supporting better than any politician or priest.

    Before election our eyes will be opened what is the rational of voting for 16 senators at one time. Senators we do not even know and we can not even meet. Can we not vote for one familiar voice we always hear on a local radio station or just remove the senate.

    Parliamentary system means easy vote counting and inexpensive election. Parliamentary voting is just like color games. No need for computerization.

  30. justice league

    mlwnag

    Have you read about Willy Brandt?

  31. FTW

    The whole world is my enemy – and Im a walking target
    Two times the devil with all the significance
    Dragged and raped for the love of a mob
    I cant stay – because I cant be stopped
    Eat motherfuckers alive who cross us
    I know youre all tired of the same ol bosses
    Let me tell you how its gonna be
    Im gonna kill anyone who steps up in front of me

    Welcome to the same ol fucking scam
    Same ol shit in a dead fad

    Everybody wants to be so hard
    Are you real or a second rate sports card?
    They all lost their dad or their wife just died
    They never got to go outside – shut up
    Nobody gives a fuck
    It doesnt change the fact that you suck

    (we are) the anti-cancer
    (we are) the only answer
    Stripped down, we want you dead
    But whats inside of me, youll never know
    (we are) bipolar gods
    (we are) you know what we are
    My life was always shit
    And I dont think I need this anymore

    Now Im not pretty and Im not cool
    But Im fat and Im ugly and proud – so fuck you
    Standing out is the new pretension
    Sreamline the (sic)ness, half-assed aggression
    You gotta see it to believe it, we all got conned
    All the mediocre sacred cows we spawne
    Put your trust in the mission
    We will not repent – this is our religion

    (we are) the anti-cancer
    (we are) the only answer
    Stripped down, we want you dead
    But whats inside of me, youll never know
    (we are) bipolar gods
    (we are) you know what we are
    My life was always shit
    And I dont think I need this anymore

    I am hated
    You are hated
    We are hated

    Everything sucks and I can prove it
    Everybody dies, shuffle on, remove it
    Individuals, indispensable
    Im the paradox deity vessel
    …the other side holds no secret
    But this side is done, I dont need it
    Before you go, you should know youre breaking down
    Youll be rotten by the time youre underground

    (we are) the anti-cancer
    (we are) the only answer
    Stripped down, we want you dead
    But whats inside of me, youll never know
    (we are) bipolar gods
    (we are) you know what we are
    My life was always shit
    And I dont think I need this anymore

    (we are) the source of conscience
    (we are) distorted sentients
    Theres only one thing left
    And I cant leave until its sated
    (we are) the absolute
    (we are) controlling you
    Theyre closing in, I cant escape
    I am hated

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