Politics is a continuum

Both sides begin their demonstrations of bravado today. Manny Pacquiao’s ultimate prize fight: versus Darlene Custodio. Jove Francisco on how the President’s pet party is growing -and glowing:

Rep. Luis Villafuerte was into numbers in his opening speech. The party, according to him now has 2,000 plus members nationwide. That they are now the party with the 2nd biggest number of congressmen in the lower house (55 with 17 more to join them soon) and that they already have as members 1/3 of the incumbent local officials (7 governors, 15 vice governors, 74 board members, 575 mayors, 249 vice mayors and 396 councilors).

the President inherited from her father -the first politician to claim he visited every single barrio in the country- an obsessive (and effective) attention to politics on the local level. All effective presidents have had this characteristic. Her difference is that the local trumps the national every time (and not just by force of circumstance, but instinct, I’d think). The selection of Gov. Petilla, for example, for her senate slate according to an editor I talked to, is simply to accommodate the candidacy of Martin Romualdez in Leyte.

Overseas, media power politics, White House-style. History Unfolding looks at America at the crossroads (recall he predicts a political and constitutional crisis ahead):

Benevolent hegemony, it seems, will cure the world’s ills and establish a lasting reign of freedom and peace. The idea that different states might make different decisions about questions of war and peace must be rejected, because in the past it has led to (among other things) great wars. We need fear nothing because the hegemon is a democracy. Unfortunately, it is more than scoring debating points today to note how Rice’s argument that democracy checks excesses has been decisively undermined by the Administration of which she is a part. Our democracy, as Pfaff notes, has re-introduced torture and indefinite detention without trial into the civilized world, now with the concurrence of the Congress. The American people democratically voted against the Administration’s foreign policy last November and the Vice President immediately made clear the Administration’s intention to ignore their views. The President’s subsequent conduct has confirmed this. Moreover, in perhaps the most troubling development, he has ordered surge not only in opposition to both American and Iraqi public opinion and the opinions of the Baker-Hamilton Commission, but against the advice of the entire permanent government, including both the State Department and the Pentagon.

There are three things I briefly want to point out in terms of the coming elections:

1. Politics is a continuum. As is life. We all evolve -or should. So do politicians. In politics, which marries ambition to public service, and depends on the people’s money, reward and punishment is a two way street. The politician may pander, even bribe, be glib, ruthless, or dissemble, but in the end, so long as fraud is minimized, the politician is subject to promotion or ouster depending on the public’s perception of his performance (capricious or not, but often not as whimsical as some tend to think). It is precisely the times spent out of power, recovering from a stinging defeat, that can turn some politicians, when they return to power, into statesmen; in other cases, it at least restores their responsiveness to public opinion; just as slavishly obeying public opinion doesn’t necessarily guarantee success at the polls. Lito Banayo let loose a folksy saying on Dong Puno’s show last night, to explain why the public is more tolerant of people leaving any administration to join the opposition of the day, or is admiring of those who doggedly stick to their guns: “it’s like moving from the big, soft bed to the hard, cold, discomfort of sleeping on the floor.” This also explains why the cardinal sin for any opposition member is to abandon the minority for the comforts of joining the ruling majority.

2. Politics is about both issues and personalities. Politics is a profession and like any other sphere of human activity, it requires interpersonal skills whose presence or absence are a relevant guide to determining if a politician is worthy of support or not. Politics is built on communication, and the means of communication the public relies on determines what kind of communicating works. the doctor with a good bed side manner will have more patients than a cranky, unpleasant doctor, and often people prefer a marginally less competent doctor to the one who may represent the pinnacle of his profession but who fails to inspire confidence or comfort; it helps to have a pleasant person selling you a house, though of course if the house is rotten, in a bad area, and overpriced, you won’t take it. And niceness won’t clinch every deal, nor should it.

But it would be a great mistake to confuse the manner in which people absorb and digest issues, with an absence of those issues: the observer who does this assumes that because the issues aren’t being communicated in the manner the observer prefers, then there aren’t issues at all! Perhaps the issues are better discussed in some venues than others? I’m not sure this is the right approach: on a national scale, the issues will, by necessity, be broader: do you want the sitting administration to stay, or go?

The perennial issues, observers say, in the Philippines, are graft and corruption (and the corollary: abuse of power). And not much is achieved, they say. But show me a country where the two aren’t the core issues always? They are at the heart of politics: that power, which is what’s contested in elections, can be so corrosive that periodically, those who possess it have to be challenged to justify their past and future stewardship.

3. When an government is subjected to a referendum the totality of its actions are what’s being judged. A government, any government, will try to present its successes as the only issues that matter; the opposition will necessarily do the opposite. It is about punishment as it its about alternatives. And it is about applying the brakes as it can be about changing the driver. Every election is about regime change to one extent or another.

There are certain things about modern life -and running a modern state- that actual limit the options of those in power. There has been little practical difference between the policies of every post-Edsa government, because there are certain things no responsible government could abandon (devotion to the free market, to private property, etc.) but each government will emphasize various programs differently, because each administration has come to power on the shoulders of a constituency, which it has to please to keep power. But even as it tries to do this, a government is regularly subjected to the judgment of all, and all things being equal, this means portions of that whole will have a larger role to play come election time than other parts of the whole.

Which is why, for example, the middle class have clout in between elections but less so on election day itself: but perhaps it all evens out. Worse, from comments here and there that I hear, the middle class instinct seems to be, to throw in the towel and informally boycott the elections: which will not affect the outcome, but places them firmly where the Palace wants them. That’s 25% of the vote you can potentially monkey around with, because the votes weren’t cast but the ballots can still be counted -and no one will in a position to contest those “votes”. And yet the the middle class will have the snob’s ultimate satisfaction: its predictions made possible by its own withdrawal from the contest. This is why the “O tempore! O mores!” wailing irritates me: at least right or wrong, the masses vote; right or wrong, the committed make a stand; but neither having participated, nor showing any commitment except to their own biases, such people then turn around and castigate the rest for their choices? That is what makes no sense at all.

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    • Arbet on February 13, 2007 at 12:41 pm

    This is why the “O tempore! O mores!” wailing irritates me: at least right or wrong, the masses vote; right or wrong, the committed make a stand; but neither having participated, nor showing any commitment except to their own biases, such people then turn around and castigate the rest for their choices? That is what makes no sense at all.

    Bravo! Bravo! Bravo!

    • Mita on February 13, 2007 at 1:21 pm

    Now this is so much better than your last post, “Team Bansot”! You really should put it in print or expand on those 3 points because it’s this kind of writing that will make a difference…

    • cvj on February 13, 2007 at 1:42 pm

    mlq3, what i especially like about your post above is that it helps to correct the…

    the middle-class is the ruling class in most democracies

    …school of thought that Mita espouses.

    • Mita on February 13, 2007 at 2:06 pm

    cvj, i’m starting to think you like me…admit it, you do!

    what’s wrong with what i said? it’s true, in MOST democracies around the world (wake up!) it’s the middle class who rules…because they have the numbers. we’re not there yet, but i see it coming and i think a lot of people are uneasy about it…

    • cvj on February 13, 2007 at 2:10 pm

    Mita, i do not not like you. So where do you think we in the middle class will get the numbers? From the upper class? If we want to move forward, we have to let the poor majority join the conversation, as equals.

    • mlq3 on February 13, 2007 at 2:14 pm
      Author

    mita, thank you, that means a lot since we differ on some of the issues.

    • manuelbuencamino on February 13, 2007 at 2:19 pm

    Singson was accompanied by Armand Sanchez. That’s a big statement addressed to Bong Pineda. We’ll see who carries more influence with Gloria, Bong or Chavit?

    • Mita on February 13, 2007 at 2:28 pm

    cvj, it’s already happening….get out from under the rock you’re hiding in and go around the countryside.

    look at the numbers of us leaving the country. romanticize or criticize it all you want, but this is reality. this will have a huge effect on society – both good and bad. but it cannot be denied they are empowering themselves and the next generation with better education and earning capacity. i was gone for 5 and a half years and am surprised and thrilled at the improvements i see in our little corner of bulacan.

    I’m not the first to come back, nor will I be the last, there will be more. ***twilight zone theme playing….***

    • hvrds on February 13, 2007 at 2:29 pm

    “There has been little practical difference between the policies of every post-Edsa government, because there are certain things no responsible government could abandon (devotion to the free market, to private property, etc.)”

    I wonder if the author of this blog truly understands what he wrote. Is it devotion to markets or devotion to free markets? (Point to an instance in history where there were free markets.) Economic and political theorists begin with concepts of an idealized world of no taxes or transaction costs and with all stakeholders having access to the same information. Perfect competition. Perfect equilibrium. Only the market jihadists believe that exists. Absolute faith in markets to solve probelms.

    The Peoples Republic of China only allows leasehold of real property and enshrined rights of private property. To destroy feudalism they confiscated land from landlords and leased them out. Land reform is not a simple policy framework. It is a strategic revoltuionary frame for destroying a societal format. It is not a Marxist idea but a primordial requirement for a functioning market economy. It is a strategic ingredient for capitalism to take root.

    Capitalism for the most part will end the primitive backward conditions that the country is in. The economic policy framwork will be industrialization for national development and a revolutionary asset reform in the agricultural sector to destroy the feudal system.

    The natural evolutionary process of the Philippines was already altered by empire. Correcting it will be difficult and tedious. There is no other way.

    If you look at the arguments of both the oppostion and the administration it has nothing to offer the broad majority of Filipinos. The greatest injustice or violation of human rights is poverty. The fancy talk about CPR, and the autocratic tendencies of the present dispensation is shallow talk when it is the poor that are carrying the burden by leaving the country that is in turn supporting the so called economic good times. The intellectual arrogance of both sides is sickening. They (the marginalized) know enough to keep silent take their lumps and the handouts or else they simply become statistics in the body count. Shame on both sides.

    Using the Lockian, Smith and Marxian thesis on private property does he understand the difference? It is the entire basic foundation for the social contract between the government and the people in a state.

    “But in the present state of Europe, when small as well as great estates derive their security from the laws of their country, nothing can be more completely absurd. They are founded upon the most absurd of all suppositions, the supposition that every successive generation of men have not an equal right to the earth, and to all that it possesses, but that the property of the present generation should be restrained and regulated according to the fancy of those who died perhaps 500 years ago.” Adam Smith

  1. HVRD,
    Economic and political concepts begin from an ideal environment; how else? Certainly all your variables would not be accommodated easily and how would one go about explaining the broad concepts for every variable available in the world? Even as we both seem to reject total faith in the markets, I am sure we will disagree where and how we could control the variables to approach what could pass for an ideal environment.

    But anyway, since you say both the opposition and the administration, in their intellectual arrogance, could not offer a solution to poverty, the biggest human rights violations ever being perpetrated against majority of the people, what can you suggest they, or,for that matter, other groups, do? Do you for instance suggest the government do as the Chinese do: confiscate all lands and try leasehood instead? You have a wealth of ideas; a blog of your own should be helpful to expand on your thoughts. Your occasional appearance here do not seem to do justice to the ideas you wish to share, short as they are, fit for a borrowed space.

    • manuelbuencamino on February 13, 2007 at 6:11 pm

    T.E.A.M. UNITY – TOGETHER EVERYBODY AMASSES MORE

    • vic on February 13, 2007 at 6:39 pm

    “Every election is about regime change to one extent or another.”

    Above statement is true if an election is called before the mandate of a current government expires, or a government is forced to call an election due to get a fresh mandate or has lost the confidence as in the case of minority government.

    Other than the above, the election is still a process where the subjects, the voters or citizens of a country will decide if the current government has performed as expected or more and be rewarded with another term, or be relegated to the opposition.

    Right now, our government is ready to call an election to try for a majority government, but all forecasts suggest that if elections are held today the same minority will result. It is just stupid for any responsible government to call an election and waste the resources and party’s campaign funds for the same results. And the opposition parties know about it, and won’t even dare to introduce resolution of No-Confidence. And simply means we are spared with a lot of nonsense that would not amount to regime change and an election only slightly a year over after the last one.

    • cvj on February 13, 2007 at 6:53 pm

    it’s already happening….get out from under the rock you’re hiding in and go around the countryside – Mita

    Well and good as far as it goes, and for that, i credit the collective effort of the individuals who make it possible. However, that piece of good news exists side by side with the reality that our people are experiencing record levels of hunger. For that, i blame GMA who has been around since 2001.

    Anyhow, you cannot cite the above as an example of the poor majority joining the conversation. The sad fact of the matter is that, under GMA, those who attempt to get their voices heard have a higher risk of becoming victims of extrajudicial killings.

    As for the OFW phenomenon and its collateral effects, that will continue to take place for some time with or without GMA so for purposes of our discussion, that is beside the point. Where we should our efforts on is on how to improve trust and the rule of law in our society. We cannot do that if we continue to support a cheater.

    • Mita on February 13, 2007 at 8:12 pm

    cvj,

    I didn’t even say it was because of GMA. Look and read again…GMA was NOT EVEN mentioned in my last comment. I was talking about the ordinary individuals and no one else.

    This is what I mean about putting words and misunderstanding a person you PERCEIVE has a differing opinion.

    Please understand this: I don’t see you as anti-GMA, I just see you as someone participating in this comment thread just as I am.

    • Mita on February 13, 2007 at 8:20 pm

    I have a question to anyone who cares to answer. If this administration of Gloria is immoral and illegitimate – why vote in May? Isn’t the act of casting the individual ballot tantamount to giving credence to this administration?

    I’ll be honest and volunteer the information I am not voting in this election. I lack of the 1-year residency requirment…and frankly, I’m glad about it.

  2. i was gone for 5 and a half years and am surprised and thrilled at the improvements i see in our little corner of bulacan.

    That’s true, Mita. I have always wondered why many Filipinos say that “kaya di umaasenso ang bansa”, but it did. When I left in mid- 90’s, travelling up North going to Baguio was hell whether public or private car.Telecommnunications and transporations were bad. The airline industry was ailing, so much so that PAL stopped flying in some regions. Sometimes, people have to be away to appreciate the changes.

    • Nick on February 13, 2007 at 9:11 pm

    Cat and Mita, Excellent points… Analogous to looking at yourself in the mirror everyday, and seeing an old friend who remarks that you’ve gained weight…

    Day to day, you don’t notice the changes, but they do happen… but still, you have to be open to the fact that economic improvements may not always trickle down to the most poor amongst us.. this is the section of the population where government programs should focus on as well..

    Great comments everyone!

    • cvj on February 13, 2007 at 10:20 pm

    blockquote>…I was talking about the ordinary individuals and no one else…- Mita

    Then we’re in agreement. Thanks for that. (Just to be clear, i am anti-GMA. No two ways about it.)

    Isn’t the act of casting the individual ballot tantamount to giving credence to this administration?

    Not at all. The institutions belong to the people, not to any one person. Besides, for obvious reasons, I see GMA as more of a squatter. You mentioned in a previous thread that you are “deathly afraid our country goes back to the vicious cycle of staging coups at the cost of the poorest amongst us“. I share your fear, in fact, this is a major reason why i first decided to oppose Arroyo. So as much as possible, i prefer to use the ways of democracy to take back our democracy. That means participating in elections.

    Political differences aside (and assuming you’re not one of those Internet Brigadiers), I do think it’s good news that you’ve come back to the Philippines and i hope you’re right that there will be more.

    • Mita on February 13, 2007 at 10:35 pm

    what on earth is an internet brigadier??? is this another label we’ll hear more about?

    • cvj on February 13, 2007 at 11:07 pm

    Mita, in our context, it’s someone who is commissioned by the administration to either:

    1. spread the administration’s talking points
    2. start fights among commenters to disrupt the flow of the discussion
    3. demoralize or otherwise discourage the opposition (e.g. via ‘mobyism’ and other such manipulative techniques)

    IMHO, i think #1 above is just fair (as long as it does not degenerate into spam), #2 is the look-out of the blog owner and #3 is every reader’s personal look-out. Yes, expect to hear this label more often.

    • Francis on February 13, 2007 at 11:17 pm

    Pag nanalo si Pacquiao we still need 10 more years to mature politically… pag hindi I see some improvement…

    • Mita on February 13, 2007 at 11:20 pm

    OUR context? oh wow…you know what this all sounds like? PARANOIA, man…plain and simple PARANOIA. I am not kidding – get a grip…seriously! because this is sick…

    let me remind you again, you are the one who started labelling, accusing and calling names…lumping those “of like-mind” into one heap and giving us one face. a person is entitled to his own opinion AND expressing it. this is what blogging has afforded us. you know that and participate.

    But, I can understand the rationale for all the talk of internet brigadiers and what-not…

    All the opposing views would be easier to spit out instead of digested and processed as nutrient or shit. That simple act cannot be done so you have come up with bogey men…

    My question to you is, what do you do when you find out it’s all in your heads??

    • Francis on February 13, 2007 at 11:34 pm

    Mita it seems that’s the way society works, you have to label stuff so you can refer to it later on in a conversation.

    I have been in this blog for years and I agree with most of the regulars here that there is indeed a internet brigadier. They spread nothing but good news and praise for the administration. It’s not paranoia per se, it’s just that if you engage them in a conversation they defend the big boss to the point that they are irrational. They also change names and post comments.

    Anyways, internet brigade is a waist of funds because too many Filipinos don’t have internet access….

    • cvj on February 13, 2007 at 11:40 pm

    Thanks Francis. As i mentioned above, i think #1 is just fair. Of course, what is distasteful about such a practice would be the misdirection in terms of identity. It’s better if the candidates post as themselves, just like what Adel did a week back. I don’t think you can discount politicians assigning people to cover the blogosphere. (In fact, when I was in the Batasan watching the Cha-cha proceedings, I saw some Congressional staffers posting comments in this blog.) After all, it’s just another medium of communication. You don’t have to be paranoid to reach that conclusion.

    • Francis on February 13, 2007 at 11:41 pm

    I am also anti-GMA, but when she retires and publish a book about her political career I’ll be the first one to buy it. She handled her politics and economics very well and the strategy and tactics she showed during her term was to be envied…

    Except of course the political killings and business killings… eg. when the NAIA corruption was exposed people died… and many more.

    • Francis on February 13, 2007 at 11:46 pm

    Hi CVJ,
    I don’t know you personally but I am one of your fans here, you defend your position real well.. you ought to be a congressman or something. I know you have a blog but I lost my bookmark.

    I am back commenting here again because politics is in the air again and I love reading comments here and studying why we have this kind of society.

    • cvj on February 14, 2007 at 12:02 am

    Thanks Francis:-) I’m glad you’re back. I remember you were the first one in this blog who raised the issue of the killings. (Re, my blog, there’s nothing there right now since i just use it to be able to comment on blogspot accounts.)

    On GMA’s book, i’m also interested in the details of how she rose to power. For one thing, i voted for her back in ’92 on the basis of her poster – the purple one which doesn’t look anything like her. I wonder if that was planned for. Until last year, she also was very effective in keeping up appearances. I remember shortly after she became president, there was this lady opposition activist who started off saying on TV something to the effect of ‘Sobra na talaga ang corruption sa ilalim ni Gloria etc. etc.’ and i remember thinking to myself WTF is she talking about???. Of course, it turns out that the oppositionist lady was right and i was wrong.

    • Francis on February 14, 2007 at 12:14 am

    I voted for her too.

    She’s a billionaire now so she’s probably untouchable right now…

    Only in voting can we make an impact on our country and touch GMAs heart… so those who’s not voting in this election, I can only say shame on you…

    Society evolves, I still bet we can be a great society if we care enough and suppress our greeds.

    • Francis on February 14, 2007 at 12:16 am

    I voted for GMA for a senate seat not for the Presidency.

    I voted for Sen. Lacson.

    VOTE LACSON!

    🙂

    • Mita on February 14, 2007 at 12:20 am

    susmaria…kasalanan nyo pala ang lahat ng ito eh! i didn’t vote for gloria and now I’m the one being called an apologist for her? duh…

    why internet brigadier? i don’t get the term…brigadier as in brigadier general?

    • cvj on February 14, 2007 at 12:43 am

    Francis, i still have my reservations about him, but will have to shelve it for now.

    Mita, to the extent that i got fooled by her, that’s true, but to say kasalanan nyo pala ang lahat ng ito… – medyo exaggerated yata. Remember Garci? In any case, i’m not the one who’s defending her now.

    (‘Internet brigadier’ as in member of an ‘internet brigade’. Perhaps you can think of a more appropriate term.)

    • Francis on February 14, 2007 at 1:04 am

    We don’t have the gift of foresight.. She’s one of the best candidate at that time for a senate seat. As I have mentioned I did not vote for her when she run for President.

    • vic on February 14, 2007 at 1:18 am

    mita,

    brigade as often invoked in the blog means the unit or group of people organized for the purpose of what the others suspected of disrupting the flow of thread. a brigade in a military is a unit compose of two to five battallions commanded by a brigier general. also it was alleged that the group is financed by the Administration, meaning Gloria and it was even suggestd by some that it was headed by Luli, the President’s daughter. But just like most, they are all allegations, could be true, may not. so it all depends on one beliefs..

  3. Do you for instance suggest the government do as the Chinese do: confiscate all lands and try leasehood instead?

    I do not know why China is being used as a model when this country is also suffering from brain drain unbalanced distribution of work force that migrant workers from the rural farms leave families to work in the urban cities. Then there is still the one child policy for a family. The worst is internet censorship.

    • moks on February 14, 2007 at 6:27 am

    mlq,

    You said ” The selection of Gov. Petilla, for example, for her senate slate according to an editor I talked to, is simply to accommodate the candidacy of Martin Romualdez in Leyte.”

    So? What are you implying? Panakip butas lang is Icot Petilla? Does this speak of his qualifications? Mababaw yata.

    I will vote for ICOT PETILLA this coming elections, although I started boycotting elections since 1990. He is new,he is not popular, he maybe a panakip butas as you implied, but he is good. I admired what he has done as Governor of Leyte, which are as follows:

    1. The first to put up a mental hospital for the mentally handicapped in Region 8. He had given a home and treatment to all these guys, picked them up from the streets, and provided them care,and treatment sans politics.

    2. Developed, promoted the e-industry in Leyte. Encourage technology development and internet computing in Leyte – not very successful yet- but the roots were planted and are now growing.

    3. Encourage technology transfer schemes for farmers benefits i.e. putting up pilots farms using modern technologies that farmers can replicate in their farms.

    4. Not so..corrupt, and not a trapo, I guess.

    5. Not to mention that Region 8 – has no representation in the Senate. But I guess, this is not so important. What really matters is that – this guy is a better option.

    Mlq, please seek a second opionion. And let us support Icot Petilla.

    • inidoro ni emilie on February 14, 2007 at 6:33 am

    “I have a question to anyone who cares to answer. If this administration of Gloria is immoral and illegitimate – why vote in May? Isn’t the act of casting the individual ballot tantamount to giving credence to this administration?”

    Why? Because that has long been in schedule whether a crook or not is currently sitting in power. In fact, the crook tried to cancel the exercise: remember the hoopla on charter change?

    • inidoro ni emilie on February 14, 2007 at 6:48 am

    francis, like you i voted for gma only up to her senatorship. later as vp, she was already hounded by the issue on jueteng, which, in a dong puno live show where she appeared as then-senator, she skirted the issue by maligning the reputation of supt. eleonor bernardo (or bernardino? i wonder where she is now?) instead of bong p. there, sitted next to her, was mon tulfo who was defending gma instead of the police officer who was investigating the charges levied against bong p. tells you then how much the character of this bansot was worth. no more subsequent higher ups position for her from me, then. and look, jueteng issues continue to bug her to this day. as in, hello chavit, hello kumpare bong: how’s the collection going?

    might be good if someone can retrieve this particular show where she appeare, and play it over and over as campaign propaganda against her.

    • Francis on February 14, 2007 at 6:49 am

    Voting in May is giving respect to the Constitution, anyways the coming election is not a plebiscite about GMAs legitimacy.

    • rego on February 14, 2007 at 10:15 am

    Moks,

    I like what you are doing! Providingus info about lesser know candidates that is worth voting. Through you Im very impressed with Icot Petilla . So Im am replacing Antonio Trillanes with Icot Petilla in my very short list.

    • Shaman of Malilipot on February 14, 2007 at 10:41 am

    Mita,

    I’ll answer your question.

    I’m voting in the May in thehope that the results will finally make it possible to impeach Gloria and oust her from Malacanang, precisely because she is immoral and illegitimate.

    GMA cannot even claim credit for the fact that the elections will be held. Remeber that her failed Cha-Cha drive was aimed at abolishing the May 2007 elections. The Con-Asses wanted to convert the 13th Congress plus the Cabinet into an interim unicameral parliament with the prerogative to call for regular elections at its pleasure, which could have meant NEVER!

    Stop overrating your lying, cheating, stealing queen.

    • Shaman of Malilipot on February 14, 2007 at 10:43 am

    Mita,

    I’ll answer your question.

    I’m voting in the May in thehope that the results will finally make it possible to impeach Gloria and oust her from Malacanang, precisely because she is immoral and illegitimate.

    GMA cannot even claim credit for the fact that the elections will be held. Remember that her failed Cha-Cha drive was aimed at abolishing the May 2007 elections. The Con-Asses wanted to convert the 13th Congress plus the Cabinet into an interim unicameral parliament with the prerogative to call for regular elections at its pleasure, which could have meant NEVER!

    Stop overrating your lying, cheating, stealing queen.

    • tagabukid on February 14, 2007 at 11:12 am

    “I have a question to anyone who cares to answer. If this administration of Gloria is immoral and illegitimate – why vote in May? Isn’t the act of casting the individual ballot tantamount to giving credence to this administration?”

    The very act of casting the ballot — against the administration slate — is the first step towards reclaiming democracy. This nation has fallen back into the dark, if not darker days, of dictatorship. We’re in fact a gangster state already: Don Fatso as the Godfather, pulling the strings in the background; GMA, Bunye, Gonzales the Dialysis-bound Consiglieri, Ermita, Defensor et al as his willing puppets (what puppet is not willing anyway? just pull the damn string).

    The ballot represents the power of the people to take back democracy. The ballot is the heart of democracy.

    That heart is what GMA pierced, screwed, chewed and spit out in the 2004 elections with no small help from the Lead Technical Support of the Garci Callcenter Hotline. This election is STILL about the legitimacy of the pretender in the Palace. I will cast my ballot not to give credence to this administration but to REPUDIATE it and its stinking candidates.

    It’s time we take democracy back.

    Power to the People, Oust GMA!

    • Mita on February 14, 2007 at 11:14 am

    shaman, you’re getting very emotional and it doesn’t do you or the debate any good…

    cvj, yes i was exaggerating…lighten up.

    i only have one more thing to say about this strange name-calling and labeling of legitimate participants at online discussions, not to mention the interrogation (not only me) which sometimes, and this is my opinion, comes off as derisive na to the other person. we lose when we discount others as part of some brigade because there’s always that chance they’re not.

    and look, maybe they have something to say that we can learn from because we all have different experiences. maybe it will help us see a bigger picture and not just one myopic view of things. maybe we’ll even see a path through the forest…same goes for me.

    when a legitimate, rational debate is not possible on this level, it is more damaging to YOU AND ME, not the politicians. and if we choose to move up in the world, like say politics, then we take this attitude with us…we bicker, we fight and act like schoolchildren at recess. and still we won’t make sense maski kagalang-galang na something na tayo. it has to start somewhere is all i’m saying…because there might be young people with impressionable minds reading these forums who will think this is alright and perpetuate it. it’s not alright, there’s a better way always and that’s what we have to strive for.

    It’s distracting too, really it is. And in the end we lose because we cannot look at issues without getting emotional and petty and strike back. It’s childish and it serves no purpose. same goes for me…

    There are people who seem to be afraid when opposing views are brought up like it was contagious or something…and I cannot understand that. We all have freedom to choose and make up our own minds.

    The best lesson we should have already learned is not just to follow the crowd, make up our own mind because that’s how we got into this mess in the first place…

    • hindi ako botante on February 14, 2007 at 11:27 am

    di pa rin tapos ang banatan,hmmmm… is that why many people like me are tuning out… I skip a lot comments because it has become offensive/ridiculous, kelan ba ako makakabasa ng debate na hindi mapupunta sa murahan?

    • Mita on February 14, 2007 at 11:31 am

    inidoro, yes i remember the hoopla about charter change. the impeachment proceedings was tainted by the charter change issue from the very beginning…in politics may kapalit lahat…and that swings both ways. i didn’t make the rules so please lang, don’t blame me because i pointed it out. this is the way it is in politics.

    i have to say, i was surprised when the chacha didn’t go through as i expected it to. for that i credit one voice more than i will the opposition.

    • manuelbuencamino on February 14, 2007 at 11:54 am

    One Voice is part of the opposition.

    • Jeg on February 14, 2007 at 12:04 pm

    i was surprised when the chacha didn’t go through as i expected it to. for that i credit one voice more than i will the opposition.

    Let’s not forget to credit the utter ineptitude of the pro-chacha people, especially our reps in the lower house.

    • cvj on February 14, 2007 at 12:08 pm

    Mita, i’m sorry if you feel that you are being interrogated. That was just my attempt at trying to understand where you are coming from. I was particularly curious on how you are able to personally shut out the Garci issue.

    Regarding your point on labeling, what is the difference between you stating that “Popularity and the people’s gullibilty will win it for any dumb A-hole” and me telling you that “you are an Arroyo apologist who thinks that your position in life puts you over and above the rest of the Filipinos.“? The former is your judgment that the people are gullible while the latter is my judgment about your the middle class is the ruling class attitude. So both are value judgments and in any discussion we have to make room for such things or else the discussion would risk missing out on an important aspect. That’s the reason why i don’t mind it when you call me boring, dense or paranoid. Of course, I try to respond to it, but you don’t see me turning it into a meta-discussion on the vices of name-calling.

    As a visitor in this forum, i try to keep to our host’s philosophy on this matter when he said:

    i think i’m free, even obliged, to castigate people for what they do, while trying to recognize that there are certain things we can’t criticize people for being -what they are. for example, in terms of gender, or race. – mlq3

    I’m also surprised that you zoomed in to the internet-brigade portion of my comment to you. My welcoming you back to the Philippines was sincere and the parenthetical remark was just for my insurance against past-gullibilities.

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  1. […] Manuel Quezon III points out three thimgs about the coming elections […]

  2. […] SOSHAL!! I was linked by the “Explainer” Manuel Quezon III and castigated me for choosing not to vote!   Little ol’ me in his blog, I’m quite honored despite the fact I was whipped.  ahahahah.  My sister said “political participation is none the more manifested than in exercising your right to suffrage.”  Oha deep!…and, yes I agree to that, but that will not make me vote this year.  Sa totoo lang, ayaw kong bumoto kasi mainit sa Mayo at ayaw ko mangitim!  hahahah pababaw nang pababaw rason koh!  I’ll just use the words of Bertrand Russel: “Having been well-fed, the aristocratic rebel looks for other sources of discontent.” […]

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