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Boom, corrupt, corrupt
By mlq3 Posted in Daily Dose on March 16, 2007 169 Comments 6 min read
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Boom corrupt, corrupt
Boom corrupt, corrupt
Kurakot, kurakot
boom, boom, boom!

…As the opposition version of the ditty goes.

Today I wrote my first entry for Current, a blog for Inquirer.net that John Nery (of Newsstand fame) and I will be writing on alternate days. So if you have time, you can take a look and see how that blog will differ from this blog, and my views on Barbara Boxer’s US Senate hearing on the deteriorating human rights situation in our country.

One additional bit from the Report of the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor of the US Department of State, can serve as a take-off point for this blog, though:

e. Denial of Fair Public Trial

The law provides for an independent judiciary; however, the judicial system suffered from corruption and inefficiency. Personal ties and sometimes venality resulted in impunity for some wealthy and influential offenders and contributed to widespread skepticism that the judicial process could ensure due process and equal justice. The Supreme Court continued efforts to ensure speedier trials and to sanction judicial malfeasance and was in the midst of a five-year program to increase judicial branch efficiency and raise public confidence in the judiciary.

The point here is that when corruption enters the picture, then the very things that should serve as safeguards -the law, legal procedures, etc.- become viewed as a means to ensuring that the law becomes yet another tool to protect the mighty and disadvantage the weak. This is at the heart of disagreements between people like myself who oppose the Anti-Terror Law, and its supporters like Philippine Commentary.

If the law is being used to bludgeon even legitimate dissent (as I think it is) than regardless of the good intentions of a new law, if it serves to increase the opportunities for actually eroding the credibility of the law, then I don’t think any such new law should be given the benefit of the doubt. For example, Dean Jorge Bocobo says the law is necessary and if abused, he will be at the barricades to denounce its misuse; but the barricades have already been raised; the abuses are taking place, the new law adds a new measure to the statute books that will increase abuse.

but the main point today is corruption. If, as the State Department’s report points out, corruption slows down the wheels of justice and in effect, makes them come off the axle of governance, then corruption in the judiciary presents an obstacle to the rule of law serving as a deterrent to human rights violations (worse, the atmosphere of impunity, in which abuses take place but no one gets punished, that has people rationalizing and excusing official human rights abuses on the shallow pretext that well, you have to fight fire with fire).

And not just when it comes to shadowy war between our armed forces and the NPA. The Bunker Chronicles recently blogged about the most recent manifestation of petty leading to lethal crimes afflicting the metropolis. Personally, I think both administration and opposition candidates have been deafeningly silent on criminality not just in Metro Manila, but in most cities of the country. Cellphone snatching, holdups in public utility vehicles, etc. What can legislators do about this? Denounce it. And lest we forget, they have the power of confirmation over military and police officials who deserve to be raked over the coals for letting these crimes take place. And for those who speak glowingly of the administration, let me add that if you exalt impunity, politically, for the chief executive then of course it follows that everyone else down the line will be lining up to line up the public, in term, for a holdup.

See also, Amando Doronila’s analysis of the survey findings and what it means -he deftly ties it to the question of human rights. The Inquirer editorial, too, points out this is a case of chicken coming home to roost for the government. The best that government apologists can do is Emil Jurado’s report that Senator Enrile has vowed to get even and give the foreign businessmen a good grilling.

I understand the Management Association of the Philippines is due to release a statement in the next couple of days, supporting the survey of foreign businessmen which found the Philippines the most corrupt country in our region. Just last night I had a chance to sit down and listen to the views of some businessmen and a banker. I asked them, is it worse today than before? One answered by means of a joke. Corruption, in FVR’s time, he said, was “under the table.” In Estrada’s time, “over the table.” And today? “With the table.”

This points to an interesting dynamic. They pointed out that the best they can do is echo what the foreign businessmen say, because if they said it first their necks would be on the line. They don’t have the luxury of being so big, like the Taipans, as to be untouchable, one remarked with a shrug. If foreign businessmen hadn’t said, it wouldn’t mean it wasn’t so -only that no one wanted to take the risk of pointing out the obvious. I’ve heard more than one person say: you want proof corruption is bogging this country down? Look at the unopened NAIA-III. The present government has had more than enough time to fix that mess, even if its origins lay in Estrada’s administration.

And before the usually yackey-yack on “well, at least Estrada’s in jail” starts up, please meditate on this picture.
Thumbs Up
It says it all. Hello, Nani, who remains blissfully free.

On another note, the Chief Justice’s recent speech is all very nice, and much as I agree with what he said, is it proper for a chief justice to make such a statement?

Finally, Comelec decides to take down the voter’s list which published people’s private information on line. And speaking of privacy, here’s a legal precedent: the Manila Trial Court declares that the president’s husband is most definitely, a public figure, that he can’t go around suing people for libel when what’s taking place is public scrutiny of his actions, or on the basis of his right to privacy.

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  1. But you are certainly free in this country and in America to consider Osama bin Laden the moral equivalent of George Washington. – DJB

    We are also free to consider whether George W. Bush’s America is the moral equivalent of the nation that George Washington founded. A clear-eyed reading of the dynamics would show that George W. Bush neoconservatism and OBL’s war for a caliphate are complementary and mutually reinforcing at the expense of secular, cosmpolitan civilization.

  2. cvj,

    i agree with u on the practical steps. I guess that is why in 2005 the US Embassy and dost quietly announced the completion of a nuclear bomb/contraband materials detector in the PORT OF MANILA. Some 7 million containers arrive at US ports every year, so they’ve been inspecting the thousands that come through the archipelago for an expected “package” from AQ. My greatest fear and that of many others is that US homeland will be so well secured that AQ will go to Plan B. You see there is no reason AQ has to attack the US itself to bring down the world economy or create a global crisis of unimaginable proportions. Once they get a Bomb, I am convinced they will immediately use it, if not on San Francisco or New York, then on Singapore, or Tokyo or Djakarta or Islamabad or Manila. There is nothing in their GeorgeWashingtonism-ala-watchful eye to restrain them from that desperate but disastrous course.

  3. CVJ, As for the ideological campaign however, I totally disagree with you. The situation is like before Pearl Harbor in 1941-42. We must awaken everyone to the dangers we face in common. The Left see the Jihad as the enemy of its enemy, and keeps spreading the same kind of paralyzing propaganda about the nihilists as they did about communism during the Cold War…that they are just fighting historical oppression and ‘root causes’ when they would like nothing better themselves than utter chaos.

  4. bencard,

    “buencamino, the burder of proving something is on the party asserting it.”

    I used “Mete” as in enforcing. I wasn’t talking about the prosecution stage.

    “Yes, the government’s respect for civil rights sometimes get in the way of preventing terrorism, and therefore, society has to make the hard choice. That’s just the way it is, Manuel.”

    I remember the chastened expressions on the face of Marcos and his cabinet when the previous Pope told them that human rights should never be sacrificed or used as payment for a temporary respite from whatever it is that’s bothersome.

    I can understand why you say what you say now. I know you will understand what I’m telling you when the government’s security forces nail your genitals to the wall.

  5. COLLATERAL DAMAGE is a very curious concept. It is often mentioned with a sarcastic tone of voice, because indeed it is a euphemism invented by the West for the accidental, and often, unavoidable killing of innocents during a war or other violent attack. But I assert that always when Israelis and the Americans have caused “collateral damage” it has truly been unintentional.

    But take the missiles rained on Israel by the Hizbollah, or the IEDs of Iraqi terrorists…the death of civilians IS the clear intention, not as collateral damage but as the principal objective. Who for example are the Iraqi “freedom fighters” intending to kill when they truck-n-car bomb a Shiite pilgrimage? Certainly not the enemy Americans, but Iraqi men women and children. Not as collateral damage in a war of liberation, but as the direct targets in a war of nihilism.

  6. DJB, if we were to use 20th century parallels, our situation today is more like how it was prior to World War I where the imperial powers, in their hubris, resorted to war as the means of resolving matters. The ‘root causes’ of World War 2 (at least in the German front) can be traced to World War I and its aftermath (look up Keynes’ “The Economic Consequences of Peace”).

    Today, the main cause of death and destruction is war itself which is blind to ideology. Bin Laden’s malevolance caused over 3000 deaths in New York. George W Bush’s incompetence has led to over 600K excess deaths in Iraq since the US invasion. Ideologically speaking, what threatens our civilization as we know it, is this cycle of war that has been promoted by the Neocons in cahoots with Bin Laden’s extremists.

    As important as the ‘war’ against terrorism is the ‘war’ against war.

    As to the virus of ‘moral equivalence’, as far as the dead on both sides are concerned, this is the least of their worries.

  7. Points to ponder:

    Theodore Kaczynski apparently singlehandedly conducted a series of bombings from 1970 to 1990. He demanded that a manifesto of his be printed by a major newspaper.

    – would his actions fit under organized crime?

    – being alone; he didn’t seem to be a member of an organization though he would frequently make allusions that he belonged to a group.

    – if his demand was that his manifesto be published in a newspaper, would that per se be an unlawful demand.

    – he didn’t seem to advocate the overthrow of the government.

    – Aside that he targetted airplanes, he targetted educated people or those in position like airline officials.

    – he obviously lived through his campaign and didn’t blow himself up.

    Are his acts covered by the definitions proposed?

    * if a person (I don’t want to use deranged because I don’t know if that accounts for the sanity of the perpetrator) acting alone blew himself up and killed a number of innocent persons; if the single perpetrator lived well that’s another matter, but if the person died, classifying the person’s act as terrorism would amount to little as the person is dead unless other matters are considered such as a higher assistance to victims or something.

  8. DJB, since we are talking of real human lives, when it comes to collateral damage, what is good enough for Britney Spears (‘Oops I Did It Again’) does not absolve the American invaders. The American, British and Australian governments have been warned of the high probabibility of chaos in the aftermath of their invasion. Bush, Blair and Howard, in their imperial hubris, chose to ignore these warnings. Now that these have become a reality, the Americans cannot escape responsibility for the consequences of their war of choice, and that includes responsibility for events spiralling out of countrol that have led to the actions of the Iraqi insurgents/terrorist.

  9. DJB,

    “Do you think we should even try to write an anti-terrorism bill? Do you think there is a phenomenon called terrorism that should be criminalized? Or is it really all just a neocon invention to you? What should actually be done about terrorism? Nothing? Treat it as ordinary crime? Or is it such an impossible thing to do that a law be passed which does not endanger “human rights”?

    I have answered your loaded questions many,many times.

    Nevertheless, i will answer them again and this time I hope you finally get it.

    1.your anti-terror bill creates more problems than it does solutions.

    2.The terrorist acts you speak of are already punishable under our revised penal code.

    3.The means to prevent those crimes and to apprehend their perpetrators are also already in our laws.

    4. the anti-terror law contains a provision that permanently suspends the right of habeas corpus, a right without which we cannot call ourselves a free country.

    5. Of course a law can be passed without endangering human rights. that’s what many of our laws are about, the protection of human rights. that’s why the anti-terror bill is wrong. It endangers human rights.

    6. The neocons did not invent terrorism. They invented the concept and ideology of the war on terror. It arose out of their need to accomplish their two most treasured goals: a. read their position on the Israel vis a vis Palestine b. read Project for a new american century

    7. what do you do about terrorism? you work twice as hard within the parameters of human rights.

  10. CVJ–The population of the world exceeds six billion. yes, one unjust or unnecessary death is too many. But there is a big, big difference between 600K and six thousand millions. What we see in the killers of the vast majority of those alleged 600K is an inhuman capacity that could just as easily do those six thousand millions.

  11. But there is a big, big difference between 600K and six thousand millions. – DJB

    So you are now using math to assuage your conscience?

    What we see in the killers of the vast majority of those alleged 600K is an inhuman capacity that could just as easily do those six thousand millions. – DJB

    The 600K deaths are courtesy of the invasion so Americans cannot escape complicity for the situation they brought about. As for the six thousand millions future deaths, the entities who have enough nuclear stockpile to do that include the United States, Russia and maybe China and Israel. If we fear worldwide annihilation, it is best to focus our attention on these parties.

  12. DJB,

    so what were six million jews. 20 million anti-communists in russia and china in your big picture?

    Can you tell me – what guarantee do we have that we will be safe if the anti-terror law falls into the wrong hands? What if it falls on Joma’s lap? Would you still support the anti-terror law?

  13. Marvin,

    Your post came out of nowhere.

    Though I don’t necessarily agree with your example (Ombudsman bombing seems vengeance and that a demand wasn’t disclosed in the LRT bombing to the public doesn’t necessarily mean there wasn’t which is quite different from the infamous ferry bombing wherein the government appeared clueless as to what it was making it appear that the government wasn’t given a demand) ; you nevertheless gave your side on the “unlawful demand” clause somewhat similar to what I stated.

    Watchful eye,

    I haven’t read what KSM said. What kind of independence was he talking about that Osama is fighting for?

  14. Marvin,

    Is it lawful for me to demand that by tomorroow or next month all the graft cases be solved and adjudicated by the Ombudsman or else I’ll bomb the Sandiganbayan? I claim that it IS, even if the result would be ideal and beneficial IF it could be done. It would be unlawful because it is impossible under the requirement of due process.

    Now I know you can think of a million other examples, like what if I demand that by next year all poverty should be eradicated and all students be educated? These are clearly “good” results if they could be accomplished. But they cannot be accomplished for reasons beyond the government’s control, namely, the realities of time and space and human beings and economics and politics.

    Do you see the fallacy in your argument? (i’m not being “argumentative” just hoping you do see it)

    But thanks for exposing the fallacy to us. It is also the RATIONALIZATION used by the communist insurgents for their war on society.

    INdeed, you have just proven, indirectly, why the communists ARE terrorists. thanks!

  15. Marvin,
    Not to put too fine a point on it, by I really am struck by the fact that Enrile’s definition of terrorism, as you’ve argued against it, can actually be defended, even if I don’t think it is the best definition. Nery Colmenares has been on tv all week arguing the other side of the thing, saying what if a jihadist walks into a restaurant and just pulls the trigger without first faxing in an “unlawful demand.” But his objection is not as illuminating or clever as yours. Nonetheless, it was his argument that caused me to propose a definition involving organized crime. The jihadist has to be part of a jihad that is making the same kind of unlawful demand: freedom for the supremacy of a caliphate, or a one true religion, to exterminate the infidels.

    It is UNLAWFUL to make a demand that the world cannot reasonably agree to because it does not have the means to grant it, even if that demand is for peace and brotherhood and prosperity for all men. That really is the same mental fallacy that refutes totalitarianism. Democracy is about opportunity and liberty, not some guaranteed result, no matter how good or virtuous.

    Again thanks for helping me to clarify in my own mind, the utility of the new law and its definition.

  16. JL,
    In 2003(?) or shortly after he was captured, I wrote a column in PDI mentioning a certain Khalid Sheik Mohammed, an essay derided by some people at the newspaper for relaying what US intelligence was then claiming about this person. It seems he is not a Pakistani or Kuwaiti at all, but someone from Baluchistan whose family had been exterminated in the late 70s by Iranian Revolutionary Guards. He was then recruited into the Iraqi Secret Service of Saddam Hussein and helped in the war against Iran. Then he is said to have served as a liaison to various terrorist groups, including Al Qaeda and its affiliates in Iraq. The Americans may know a lot more about this person than they have let on, but I predict much more will come out about him that will attempt to show the link between Saddam and Al Qaeda and 9/11! But one thing seems fairly certain. It was for Iraq that he was actually working when he operated in the Philippines!

  17. But thanks for exposing the fallacy to us. It is also the RATIONALIZATION used by the communist insurgents for their war on society. – DJB

    It is also the rationalization used by the neocons to justify their war in Iraq. By the same logic, i think Marvin has also proven, indirectly, why the neocons are terrorists. Thanks as well!

  18. DJB,

    Then I’ll wait as things develop regarding KSM though I’m still waiting for Watchful eye as to what KSM claimed.

  19. JL,
    The main reason I had put enough stock in those 2002-2003 reports on KSM being an Iraqi agent to put it in my column is that I was then struggling with the argument that the Baathists being a “secular” movement would not have anything to do with the religious fanaticism of OBL/AQ and so why would they have harbored them in Iraq or worked with them. Well it was quite obviously the fact that they WERE godless and secular that they COULD work with any sort of lowlifes to hit their enemy, the United States, knowing full well that they could control their own situation in Iraq.

    Now let’s talk about KSM some more. Maria Ressa describes him in Manila as a playboy who loved the good life, hung out in the luxury hotels wining and dining sexy Pinays and living the good life, even as he and Ramzi Youssef planned over 30 terror attacks, including 9/11. We can use the same argument that a “real” Al Qaeda member, who ARE religious fanatics could not have carried out such a double life. They can live in sleeper cells in New York and California living double lives, but not the kind of wastrel/libertine life as KSM did in Manila.

    This forces us to a plausible conclusion: it is more likely that KSM was a “secular” Iraqi agent than that he was an inner circle Al Qaeda member given to Mohammedan mumbo jumbo in his private life. That is also why he did a lot of other things that AQ did not plan or order.

  20. So here is my theory. Thrown rotten eggs at me everyone if you wish. Nine Eleven WAS a plot of Saddam Hussein’s all along, planed by Khalid Sheik Mohammed and Ramzi Youssef who were merely using the fanatical Al Qaeda members to carry it out.

  21. It’s all beginning to fit in my neocon brain. IF I were Saddam Hussein, this is exactly how I would have done it. I have to use somebody else to carry out my attack because I don’t want to be traced and therefore punished by the enemy after the attack. I would want the enemy to think it was an attack planned as far away from my homeland of Iraq, in far away Afghanistan, and carried out by a bunch of lunatic vestal virgin hunters led by a bearded theocrat ready to supply them to me. Saddam may have had agents in the US who could have done it, but that would be too dangerous.

  22. I haven’t read what KSM said. What kind of independence was he talking about that Osama is fighting for? – Justice League

    Justice League, a PDF of KSM’s confession and statement is in the BBC website. The excerpt that refers alludes to George Washington and the fight for independence is in the following:

    …You know very well there are language for any war. So, there are, we are when I admitting these things I’m not saying I’m not did it. I did it but this the language of any war. If America they want to invade Iraq they will not send for Saddam roses or kisses they send for a bombardment. This is the best way if I want. If I’m fighting for anybody admit to them I’m American enemies. For sure, I’m American enemies. Usama bin Laden, he did his best press conference in American media. Mr. John Miller he been there when he made declaration against Jihad, against America. And he said it is not no need for me now to make explanation of what he said but mostly he said about American military presence in Arabian peninsula and aiding Israel and many things[emphasis mine] So when we made any war against America we are jackals fighting in the nights. I consider myself, for what you are doing, a religious thing as you consider us fundamentalist. So, we derive from religious leading that we consider we and George Washington doing same thing. As consider George Washington as hero. Muslims many of them are considering Usama bin Laden. He is doing the same thing. He is just fighting. He needs his independence. Even we think that, or not me only. Many Muslims, that al Qaida or Taliban they are doing. They have been oppressed by America. That is the feeling of the prophet. So when we say we are enemy combatant, that right. We are…

    That’s not the first time i heard of the comparison to the American revolutionaries. A taxi driver here in Singapore, during the height of the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, also compared Hezbollah to the American Minutemen who were just defending their homes.

    DJB, what you have just said at 3:22, 3:26 and 3:42 above is either a revelation or an unraveling. Either way, it’s not a time to throw rotten eggs.

  23. DJB,

    Would nine eleven be considered as an act of terrorism as an attempt to overthrow the U.S. government or is the definition for local consumption only?

    What if some people hijack a PAL plane (which is under our responsibility), take it overseas (or similar)and ram it into another country’s skyscraper? Would that fall under our bill?

    I guess we’ll get to know more of KSM as things go along.

    Marvin,

    Is your article on the Juan Luna trial finished?

  24. i think it’s safe to say na an anti-terror bill would not have been passed kung si erap ang presidente. everybody from the civil society, the CBCP, would have banded together and criticize the bumbling erap for even contemplating to pass such a bill.

    but since si arroyo ang “presidente”, oks na ang bill na ito sa civil society. heck, even joker arroyo supported the anti-terror bill.

    ===

    wouldn’t be crazy kung kasama rin si Conrad de Quiros sa Current blog ng PDI?

    ano kaya ang magiging istura ng “conversations” nina manuel at conrado? nyeheheh…

    ====

    If you ask Satur, “Do you support the NPA?” why doesn’t he say YES or NO?

    If he says NO, he gets to go on with his life (unless of course you believe the CPP NPA is into extrajudicial killings of ex-comrades and rejectionists, which he himself denies.) If he says YES, then the politically correct can no longer give him the benefit of the doubt.

    I don’t know if Satur supports the NPA, but I believe he may have sympathies with their cause. Support and sympathize, two different things.

    Support for me means aid and collaborate with the NPAs on terror activities. unless the admin has evidence that directly links Satur and his partylisters to the NPA attrocities that are happening today, then they need to stop harassing and killing the lefty party listers.

    Look, i don’t agree with bayan muna on most issues. but if the US can tolerate really stupid people from the Ku klux klan and their sick ideas, then we can do the same with bayan muna etc.. And no, bayan muna and gabriela are nothing like the KKK.

    i think arroyo’s legitimacy problems is making the npa insurgency worse.

  25. CVJ,
    I doubt very much that the Taliban or the Sunni suicide bombers or the Bali bombers ACTUALLY admire George Washington or consider OBL their GW. They certainly would puke at the suggestion that they are IMITATING George Washington. In fact, I am fairly certain only a sophisticated terrorist, whom Maria Ressa said “enjoyed doing his job [of mayhem and mass murder]”, educated in North Carolina and partaking of Filipino uhmm hospitality, could use this kind of argument. He knows it will appeal to the paleoliberals seeking an end to the “war on terror” — a war to counter HIS and Saddam Hussein’s and OBL’s war on civilization. I suppose he might have a leg to stand on if what the American revolutionaries did was not throw British tea into Boston harbor, but if they had poisoned or otherwise slaughtered a couple of thousand Londoners claiming that would free the Thirteen Colonies by demonstrating how much the colonists loved freedom and independence.

  26. MB,
    I am not aware that Cheney has expressed this theory, although it is true that George Bush has been widely derided for invading Iraq for suspecting Saddam of having a hand in 9/11 or would have a hand in future attacks unless he was overthrown. This theory has occurred to me only while trying to answer your questions today and because I remembered reading a small, small article in the I believe the Opinion Journal way back in 2002-2003 after a guy named KSM was captured and his story was told and the PDI published my article. At that time it was really Ramzi Youssef that was star billing because of the first WTC attack. It could be in Maria Ressa’s book, but I haven’t read it. Need to go out right now to get a copy!

    But tell me, doesn’t it make some sort of eerie sense now?

  27. DJB, those were KSM’s words, not mine so if you have any doubts on his truthfulness, you can take it up with him. On the other hand, the taxi driver who compared Hezbollah with the American Revolutionaries was a devout Muslim. Since i normally don’t volunteer my political views in casual conversation, he had no way of knowing whether or not i was a liberal.

    On your analogy of poisoning the Londoners, we have to remember that with technological advances through the centuries, the tendency towards inflicting damage upon innocents, whether you call it ‘collateral damage’ or ‘terrorist acts’, has been increasing both for the big army of the State and the small army of the guerillas/terrorists. That’s the reason why it is War itself that has to stop.

  28. CVJ,

    Thanks for the article on the excerpt.

    Though I believe that the context of George Washington and Osama fighting for independence is so incongruent that its hardly credible.

    Given that 911 happened before any American “retaliation” occurred to any country; we have to take into account that the independence that Osama is fighting for was already undermined before 911.

    KSM has to defend the idea that Saudi Arabia wasn’t independent; that the Talibans (presumably in Afghanistan) weren’t independent; that Israel was undermining the independence of another nation; all occurring and currently happening prior to 911.

    The “many things” is so general that it escapes counter argument.

    And for the Hezbollah to justify their defense of their home as equitable to the minutemen; they have to put forward the idea that no sufficient provocation came from them before the Israeli invasion.

  29. DJB.

    The link between Saddam and 911 is one of the tenets of neocons. It was one basis for the Invasion of Iraq.

    It has been proven a lie. And now you propose to bring it back to life.

    And be honest. You know damned well that Cheney continues to insist on the link theory. You know Cheney has never accepted any other view except that Saddam was linked with 911 because you watch CNN, if not FOX.

    Your theory is neither original nor plausiblle. It can by confessions extracted from someone who has spent years in Abu Ghraib or Guantanamo Bay.

    Give it up man. Those neocons are nothing but crooks.

  30. Given that 911 happened before any American “retaliation” occurred to any country; we have to take into account that the independence that Osama is fighting for was already undermined before 911. – Justice League

    From KSM’s statement above, we can infer that the ‘independence’ that OBL was fighting against was the presence of US bases in Saudi Arabia in the 90’s. In a perverse way, with GWB’s help, he succeeded since the Americans eventually left their bases in Saudi Arabia and transferred them to Iraq.

    As for Israel, the issue was its undermining of the independence of the Palestinian people.

    For the Hezbollah’s provocation, it was supposed to be its abduction of two Israeli soldiers. However, that war ended without the soldiers having been recovered.

    On the comparison between OBL and George Washington, i find it as incongruent as DJB’s parallels between today’s situation and World War II. On the other hand, the Hezbollah -> American Minutemen comparison is more tenable.

  31. JM,

    Add Jinggoy Estrada to those who supported the bill even if PGMA is President.

    i think my comment went over your head.

    even before hello garci, jinggoy was already crafting his own anti-terror bill without maam’s prodding.

    joker on the other hand…

  32. “bystander, it is a sad fact of life that all criminals, more often than not, invoke “human rights” and “due process of law” and use them as shields from the sword of justice. Defective law enforcement and the limitations of our judicial system often leave this criminals free, ready to continue their heinous activities. What about the victims and their loved ones? Obtaining justice is a “human right” too, isn’t it? –BENCARD

    -Does protesting in the streets of Manila make one a criminal? And just because they are members of leftist orgs, you are implying that they no longer have the right to invoke due process and advance the cause of human rights? Does the Constitution make any distinction as to who can invoke the Bill of Rights? That only anti-communist thugs and hypocrites can use the law as they see fit and to their advantage? If one who is killed is actually an NPA – a combatant – then I have no problem with that. It is both the military’s right and duty under the Constitution to protect the system that created it. But if it is a student, farmer, laborer, journalist, or lawyer who is victimized simply because of his or her affiliation with Bayan Muna, etc., then we have a problem.

    Lest I forget. Criminals and criminal-minded zealots likewise abound in the corridors of government. And mind you, they are more dangerous than all the Satur Ocampos and Teddy Casiños combined.

  33. JM,

    Hello Garci or not, Jinggoy Estrada has little respect for PGMA. And yet he went ahead and gave PGMA the power to wield this.

  34. CVJ,

    And Osama was ranting against the U.S. bases in Saudi Arabia while he maintained Al Queda bases in Afghanistan.

    With regards to Israel, why didn’t he just use his money to help Arafat rebuild Gaza and the West bank.

    Sometime in 1914, a Serbian assassinated the Austro- Hungarian heir which served as a provocation. The Austro-Hungarian empire later declared war on Serbia but certainly knowing well that the heir won’t be resurrected.

  35. DJB,

    The earlier post was actually a long prelude to the main point of my comment about your definition, but when I hit the submit comment button earlier, my destiny cable connection was cut off. Luckily, I aved the post in a sticky note, so here it is.

    If we break down DJB’s definition, these appear to be the elements:

    1. Organized crime
    2. With the purpose of achieving the political and ideological end of overthrowing the legitimate government
    3. Use of illegitimate means.

    The first element requires an association with some sort of leadership and membership which facilitates the commission of a crime. I think the word crime might be too broad, as it could cover the entire spectrum of crimes including unjust vexation, libel and adultery, which are not relevant in terrorism.

    The second element requires that the political and ideological purpose is to overthrow the legitimate government. The problem here is that it looks like it is not different from rebellion or sedition, both of which pertain to the political and ideological end of overthrowing the legitimate government. My impression is the element of “causing or to cause fear and panic among the populace” is the key distinguishing factor between rebellion and terrorism. But I don’t think we have to qualify fear and panic as widespread and extra-ordinary, because as stated above, that’s not easy to prove.

    The third element ” use illegitimate means” pertains to the mode of committing the crime. That appears to be alright.

  36. Can you tell me – what guarantee do we have that we will be safe if the anti-terror law falls into the wrong hands? What if it falls on Joma’s lap?

    Does he still need the law to govern and eliminate his enemies?

    Their form of justice ridicules the human right of the person accused of a crime.

    The hit squad merely asassinates the person who received series of warnings from NPA operative. How is this person brought to their “court”? By complaint from private citizen. The accused does not even have the chance to defend himself.

    You must have not received the letter with black ribbon, have you?

  37. And Osama was ranting against the U.S. bases in Saudi Arabia while he maintained Al Queda bases in Afghanistan. – Justice League

    Yeah the Taliban-led government did not ranted against OBL, although when Afghanistan was liberated, quite a bit of resentment against the Arab foreigners came out in the open.

    With regards to Israel, why didn’t he just use his money to help Arafat rebuild Gaza and the West bank. – Justice League

    It’s probably because he is evil and that he is really just milking the Palestinian issue for his own benefit. OBL, the neocons, and other warmongers are kindred spirits after all.

  38. Marvin,
    Thanks for indulging this amateur. But some caveats to your comments about my definition:

    (1) The key word in element one 1s not “crime,” but the entire term “organized crime” which has a common, even colloquial meaning. It pointedly draws a moral equivalence between economic mafias and the insurgent NPAs, both of whose principal activities are extortion and murder, and both of whom rely on sowing widespread fear and panic of what they can do. But they are clearly distinguished by their ultimate goals. The word “organized” is really the key term, because this would save individuals acting purely alone in method, motive and resources from the terrorist label, even if they commit mass murder and extortion and sow fear and panic. It might even save the individual suicide bomber from that label if it can be shown that it was really a madrassah or a communist front organization that hypnotized, brainwashed or caused him or her to undertake some crime, perhaps against his will, by blackmail or coercion.

    (2) Regarding the second element, you are right that it is the element of intentionally sowing fear and panic among the populace that distinguishes such organized terrorism from organized rebellion or sedition. That the fear and panic ought to be widespread and extraordinary however, is also necessary in order to save even the economic mafias from the label of being terrorists! You see, the economic mafias only want to make a necessary few fear them and panic at their approach, but the general populace they want to be confident of safety and security in their gambling dens, prostitution parlors and other “businesses” as long as they patronize them. That is not true for the NPA extortionists or the jihadists, unless you wish to believe that the populace likes the presence of the NPAs in their communities.

    The third element you and I agree on.

    But you see where I am trying to take it. Very few would qualify as true terrorists under my definition. Not even bonafide criminals like mafias or sociopaths that think and act a lot like terrorists would actually qualify.

  39. buencamino, I don’t think the newly enacted anti-terror law, as thoroughly emasculated by Jamby and Pimentel, can allow the government to “nail (my) genitals to the wall”. Nonetheless, if they will do it, at least they can nail mine whereas your’s probably would be an impossibility because it’s too minuscule even to locate.

    Bystander, hold it. You are making an issue where there is none. I didn’t say the activists and protesters should be deprived of their civil rights. The sun shineth on both the wicked and the just – and both breathe the same air, isn’t it? I’m referring to a potential perpetrator identified by good intelligence to have the intent, and lethal equipment, to cause harm. A three-day warrantless detention and intense investigation may save hundreds of lives, including your own and mine and our loved ones. I say three days are not enough.

  40. marvin,
    correction, I didn’t mean to say in point (1) above that economic mafias sow widespread and extraordinary fear and terror as explained in (2). I meant both jihadists and the communists do that.

  41. CVJ,

    Well I can’t say much about grouping the neocons, warmongers, and OBL together.

    Thanks again for the excerpts.

  42. DJB,

    I’m puzzled as to the rationale of saving an individual acting purely alone in method, motive and resources from from the terrorist tag.

    Does that mean that you would regard someone similar to the UNABOMBER operating here as not a terrorist?

  43. Wow ang galing galing naman.! So pwede na man pa la mag-usap sila DJB, MB, CVJ, Bencard, Justice League, Ca T, J M, Bystander, Mravin, UPn at ibpa ng maayos…. Keep it up guys! Very very informative! Kaya lang ang hirap hirap pala mapasok ang isang thread pag nag uusap kayo ng maayos. Kagabi ko pa binubiksan ang thread na to but to no avail. Kailangan kong umuwi sa bahay, skip my Sabado night out and use a high end PC and connection para makapasok lang.

    BTW Manolo. I dont like like the new format. Nahilo ako. Mas Ok yata yung dating format ah. Ewan ko lang huh baka dahil na rin sa Red Wine na nainom ko. Oh yes imbes na gumimik sa labas bumili na lang ako ng wine at sa bahay na lang uminom. And enjoy the comments in this blog. After all ang lamig lamig sa labas eh. Mas comfortable pa, I can just be in my boxer. Log on on the computer Cool na! Laking Tipid pa ! 14 $ lang yun 5 liters na red wine compared to $100 plus na gagastusin mo sa bar.

  44. Anyway tama na ang vetsin back to discussion.

    Manolo, I believe the “boom corrupt corrupt” ditty is not really a good idea. I believe there some self prophesying effect about it. Singing it is like you are enjoying corruption . That corruption is cool. And believ me corruption in not a monopoly of Gloria alone. Everybody in politics is very much into it.

    Eradication of corruption takes more than just composing or singing an anti corruption ditty. It takes more than just an assessment from PERC. It takes more than just unsubstantiated blah blah from politicians like Alan Peter Cayetano. It needs tough action. It needs sincerity from people like Sen Ramon Magsayasay Jr. to really pursue it and file complaints….

  45. Francis, I agree with you on the cold mix asphalt corruption but I don’t agree that it is only happening in Gloria’ s term. As far as I can remember, this is “ phenomena “ has been with us way way back. I observed this during on my grand uncle’s 2 term as a governor in our province on the late 60’s. Well maybe the term is not cold mix asphalt but Im very sure it was all about road asphalting ….

  46. HVRDS,

    I really admire your gift of words from the very first comment that I read from you. However, I really wish you would be more interactive. I observe that you really don’t care about the readers of your comment. Para bang wala lang …bahala na kayo umitindi sa sinasabi ko . Sayang! Hirap ma ka relate sa yo. Eh kung si MLQ3 however busy he is take some time out to reply to the clzrifications directed to him….

    Sayang! Kasi I feel that you really have good ideas and we can really learn something from you. Masyado ka yatang suplado … Hindi maganda para sa isang blogger. I tried checking kung may blog ka baka sakali doon mas maiinitindihan kita. Pero wala yata. Meron ba?

    Anyways marami akong gusting liwanagin sa yo katulad ng mag eto:

    “Guess which briliant government gave them the oxygen to rise from being an almost marginalized group?” –— Are you referring to Gloria?

    “The Asian crisis should have destroyed the myths of global liberalization process.” – How??????

    “Then to cover their failures the GMA government sought out an easy and favorite scapegoat. The Reds.”— How??????????

    Joma believes in a Maoist insurgency. How can you call him a communist? Do you know the difference?—- so whats the difference…

    I don’t know huh but reading these kind of statements is like insulting your readers and treating them stupid…Its like saying , di nyo ma gets ang sinasabi ko ano? Ang bobobo nyo!

    Hay naku di nakakatuwa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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