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May 16

The real electoral battle

The Pulse Asia exit poll, together with quick counts, was the sum of all administration fears (at which the Inquirer editorial took a tart look). For an analysis of the exit poll, see Philippine Commentary. The exit poll and the quick count therefore became the focus of the papers today:

In the Namfrel count, Legarda placed first in tabulations from Metro Manila, Regions 1, 2, 7, 12 and the Cordillera Administrative Region.

Escudero led in Regions 4, 5, 8, 9,10, 11 and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Pangilinan, as of the final report released last night, was leading in Region 6 and Caraga, while Angara was No. 1 in Central Luzon.

Four TU candidates, including Zubiri, Recto, Prospero Pichay and Michael Defensor, were outside the winning circle.

GO’s Sonia Roco and John Osmeña placed 17th and 18th, respectively. TU’s Vicente Sotto and Cesar Montano occupied the 19th and 20th places.

Namfrel’s initial figures yesterday were culled from precincts in Ilocos Norte, La Union, Pangasinan, Cagayan, Kalinga, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac, Batangas, Laguna, Marinduque, Quezon, Rizal, Albay and Catanduanes in Luzon;

Iloilo, Negros Oriental, Leyte, Samar and Southern Leyte in the Visayas;

Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur, Bukidnon, Lanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental, Davao del Sur, Davao Oriental, North and South Cotabato, Maguindanao, Agusan del Norte and Agusan del Sur in Mindanao.

In Metro Manila, Nassa-Namfrel included reports from 71 precincts from Mandaluyong City and 18 from Muntinlupa City.

Foreign media reports are interesting, too: see Reuters, the Christian Science Monitor, the Voice of America, ABC Radio Australia, and GulfNews.

Paul Darwynn Garilao sums up the points and counter-points of both pro and anti exit poll camps. But the surveys might be even more of a whammy because the command vote and machinery may have broken down in the Visayas or been thwarted by poll-watcher’s vigilance in places like Samar and could possibly be yanked out in Davao. In Inquirer Current, John Nery points to Ralph Recto’s suggestion that, unsure if we’d even have elections, candidates had to murder each other to compensate for lost campaigning time.

My Arab News column for this week is Philippine Govt Annoyed by Public Opinion. I must say this summary of what the poll numbers means, surprises me. Coming from Palace booster Tony Lopez as it does:

The people have spoken. They want new faces. They want new leaders. They want change. They want new directions. They don’t want Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. These are the possible conclusions one can make looking at the senatorial race based on early returns from the quick count by ABS-CBN-STI.

And the Palace doesn’t want too many people saying the above. And so… The cheating’s there. There are many options, and they’re being demonstrated by means of news reports and blog entries. You have news reports of how the cheating’s being done in Masbate. Among bloggers, Inblogosphere recounts volunteering to join the quick count in Baguio, and the cheating she’s encountered in looking at electoral returns:

— There’s an FPJm partylist in the Election Return. But in the actual Certificate of Canvasses which is the basis of major Comelec count the same FPJm partylist was totally ignored. I[t] was not in the list!
— There are only 15 votes for Montano, 45 for Richard Gomez for one sample ER. The total result is totally padded for one side – Gomez has now 65 votes. And Montano- Zero votes.
— Votes for Alan Peter Cayetano was added to the other nuisance Cayetano.
— Certificate of Canvasses total results of votes is not the same with the corresponding election returns.

And how Overseas Fiilpino Voters voted: according to The Arab News only a small percentage did, but the results do suggest that that minority felt strongly enough to vote and express how they feel:

Tallyo16
ABS-CBN reports on how Filipinos in America voted:

It took the embassy’s election deputies headed by Nolasco nearly 16 hours to finish counting about 700 ballots. Based on preliminary totals, the top 12 were: Francis Pangilinan (456), Loren Legarda (424), Ralph Recto (395), Joker Arroyo (388), Benigno Aquino III (381), Manuel Villar (370), Edgardo Angara (338), Panfilo Lacson (326), Aquilino “Coco” Pimentel (297), Francis Escudero (293), Vicente Magsaysay, Alan Peter Cayetano (281) and Sonia Roco (280).

And at home: see the updated Namfrel and other quick counts, nationally. And quick count results in Cebu as of 10 pm last night, quick count results in Davao as of 5:30 pm last night; and for Zamboanga as of 8:25 am; Surigao del Norte as of 4:45 am; and Pampanga (very thorough report online). A text message I got (I hope Iloilo City Boy or someone can verify this) has an opposition sweep, per Bombo Radyo’s final, unofficial, quick count:

Escudero 454,323
Legarda 434,574
Lacson 427,465
Villar 387,216
Aquino 358,676
Pangilinan 345,564
Trillanes 336,668
Honasan 326,311
Angara 313,080
Cayetano 305,309
Pimentel 291,265
Zubiri 261,093

Ellen Tordesillas gives a rundown of the significant local races.

Honesto General wrote this nice reflection on the whole thing:

The voting was one big social event. Everyone came: the young and old, rich and the poor, the hale and the infirm, the master and servant, the mistress and maid. Everyone had exactly one vote each. We filled up our ballots on two tables that ran the whole length of the court.

We should be proud that everyone who came could read and write. Not too many countries in the Third World can match that.

The Filipino woman won the right to vote almost three-quarters of a century ago. The Kuwaiti women won her right to suffrage only last year. There are many countries whose women are not yet allowed to vote.

Of course, there are still a lot of things wrong with our democracy. The killings are our national shame. But the killings are mostly to fight for control of the illegal lottery “jueteng,” smuggling and the rackets. As they kill each other, the country might be better off — maybe.

A democracy is like a house that is never finished. It is work in progress. The greatest tragedy is to lose hope. As we deplore the dark side of our democracy, let us count our blessings. And there are a lot of blessings that we should be thankful for. We just are not looking for them in the right places.

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  1. rego

    oh there was one Martin Baustista. But did he won? Dapat ba ikulong muna ang mag taong katulad nya lumbag muna sa batas at makulong para lang manalo?

  2. Jeg

    Pero “did any of the candidate really exhaustively and intelligently dicussed the issues during the campaign”?

    And I ask you, rego, to give them some credit. Im sure they did in their campaign sorties and in face-to-face meetings. The GO candidates arent really neophytes so we in Manila know that theyre all about. TU candidates too.

    (Teka, by ‘intelligently,’ did you mean in English using many five-dollar words? Maybe they didnt. 🙂 )

  3. benj

    Namfrel Zamboanga is almost done (94%). The trend held on. The Genuine Opposition: 9 Team Unity: 1 Independent: 2

    Decimation.

  4. benign0

    rego said “If youre here in the Philippines, look out the window. Take a walk outside. Go visit the rural areas. The issues will stare at you right in the face. You think the Filipino voter doesnt know the issues? He lives with the issues. He doesnt need them articulated or printed on paper. Besides, with the substandard education the uiniversity-trained elite has subjected him to, you think he’ll have the communication skills you have?”

    Well just like a good story, if it is not written down in a book, it never gets sold.

    The issues indeed are everywhere — except, that is, in the campaigns and debates our politicians engage in, as you yourself pointed out. 😉

    Kaya nga education is an issue e. Pinoys see the problems around them but don’t have the intellectual faculties to evaluate them critically. That is why nothing gets solved.

  5. rego

    Exactly Benign0, even the media is not helping much!

    Sabi nga ni Jeg, siguro nadiscuss ang mga issues sa mga campaign sorties. Pero yun ng nag lang hindi nila sinulat. Mas pinili nila ang 5 dollar bills 🙂

  6. The Ca t

    Cat,

    Madame auring is that you? Eh mukha yata natalo an ex mo na si vixtor wood….meow meow

    MB,

    Victor Wood had been long dumped by Madam Auring. She took a 17 year old guy for a fiance.

    To refresh your memory, I said that no one can beat Alfredo Lim in Manila. That’s why even Ping Lacson decided to run for senator.

    And I said that Imelda Marcos won’t run.

  7. Mita

    benigno is right on a lot of points but people refuse to acknowledge his reasoning …. one ordinary person expresses his independent opinion here and is accused of being a “brigadier” – some paranoid fantasy of a few individuals who regard themselves as morally upright.

    as for morality, it’s really out of sync for us to expect politicians to be morally upright when we elected a self-procalimed womanizer into the presidency at one time. self-proclaimed ha. do you even get the irony of it all?

    as for cheating…YES. everyone cheats in this country. from the time you buy your food in the market, kulang sa timbang…to the gas you cook your food with. to mommies doing their kids’ homework so they get top marks. to the streets you drive everyday which is fluid not because there is no traffic but because no one follows the lanes…we disobey rules all the time and will not practise common courtesy with each other.

    what can we expect when we ourselves refuse to acknowledge how sick we have made our society? gringo and trillanes and gloria are just symptoms of a bigger disease we all share. and yet here we go again…perpetuating the lies and the drama.

  8. Bencard

    mlq3, sorry for skipping the beat. differing time zones and nocturnal needs prevented me from reading, digesting and responding to your post.

    In the field of Law, I think “legal certainty” and “moral certainty” are two different concepts with two very different functions. Legal certainty is a test to determine whether a court has subject matter jurisdiction to hear a case, i.e., whether the jurisdictional amount has been met. Otherwise, the amount claimed in the complaint will control.

    Moral certainty, on the other hand, refers to that degree of proof required to convict a criminal, i.e., proof beyond reasonable doubt, one that produces absolute certainty in the mind of the trier of fact.

  9. mlq3

    bencard, thanks very much. so it’s the difference between say, forming an opinion and having that opinion stand up in court? and of course, the very strict rules (on procedure, evidence) that ensures that a jury, for example, convicts not on the basis of its emotions, but facts that have withstood the scrutiny of all sides. much obliged for the clarification.

  10. Jon Mariano

    Benign0, Trillanes is projected to win but that is not a sure bet. Whatever reason people have that they voted for him is their business and it doesn’t look good on you condemning them for it.

    You don’t like people gossiping and speculating here but you also do it yourself and you even acknowledge it by saying that you don’t have proof.

    Erap’s election was a learning experience and look where Goma, Cesar Montano, Boyet de Leon, and Pacquiao are, they lost!

    If people believe that Gloria should go, then she should go even just for the sake of changing her. Well, I believe that she should go.

  11. toniong pagod

    it all comes down to culture doesn’t it?

    so will the country have the faceless, malleable masses that are merely prey to the whims of the small band of self-involved power brokers that run things in this country?

    are these the only people our society can allow? yung mga nanggugulang at yung mga nagpa-pagulang?

  12. Bencard

    Jeg:

    Obviously, there is some confusion on the context of what I wrote ” moral judgment has no place in politics”.
    What I was referring to was “judgment” of judgmental people, other than individuals on their own PRIVATE morality, acting as moral policemen. Remember I was commenting on cvj’s comment that Jude’s post was devoid of “any moral sense and respect towards to (sic) voters”.

    When a person votes with his conscience (not for a personal quid pro quo) he follows his own ideals of morality, as the sovereign over his body and mind. This is not subject to intrusion by anyone, not even the government. You’re right, each person is presumed competent to judge his own morality, but the key word here is PRESUMED. The hard question is: is he actually? How could the likes of Jalosjos get elected while serving sentence for a heinous crime?

  13. ay_naku

    as for cheating…YES. everyone cheats in this country. from the time you buy your food in the market, kulang sa timbang…to the gas you cook your food with. to mommies doing their kids’ homework so they get top marks. to the streets you drive everyday which is fluid not because there is no traffic but because no one follows the lanes…we disobey rules all the time and will not practise common courtesy with each other.

    So that excuses GMA’s massive cheating in the 2004 elections? Are you saying that if everybody does it to some degree, then ok na lang yun, hayaan na lang? Ok lang ang mandaya?

    what can we expect when we ourselves refuse to acknowledge how sick we have made our society? gringo and trillanes and gloria are just symptoms of a bigger disease we all share. and yet here we go again…perpetuating the lies and the drama.

    Gringo and Trillanes are now in jail facing the charges against them. So is Erap. GMA has steadfastly refused to squarely face the very serious charges against her, using everything in her power –legal or illegal, sometimes ruthlessly so– to thwart attempts to make her face the music.

  14. cvj

    Bencard, the starting point of Jeg’s question to you was your assertion above that:

    “Politics, especially the Philippine brand, is devoid of moral sense so you either play the game or stay out of it, or else you moralize and lose.” – Bencard May 17th, 2007 at 11:03 am

    Your original argument was that moralizing in politics gets in the way of winning. You were justifying Jude’s lack of moral sense, particularly in ‘sacrificing’ Pacqiao since that is the way politics is done here.

    I don’t think you can get any clearer than that so any subequent attempts at spinning will have to wait.

  15. Bencard

    cvj, for once in your life, would you refrain from taking my comments in bits and pieces? read my whole 5/17 11:03 am post which was specifically directed to you, then connect the portion you quoted with the premise i made. i was actually impugning your penchant for making moral judgments on people, from the sitting President of the Philippines to this lowly retiree in the U.S. It was YOU who asserted “Jude’s lack of moral sense”, not me, and don’t you accuse me of “justifying” it.

    I don’t think Jude’s commentary on Pacquiao makes him necessarily lacking in “moral sense” as big (in your mind) as yours.

    What is clear to you would shame the dark waters of the Pasig River.

  16. Mita

    ay_naku, i didn’t say that. what i’m trying to say is, we can’t correct a mistake with more mistakes. if we accuse someone of cheating- take it all the way and make sure he stays in jail. same with the impeachment. if nothign happens, then we all have to live with it and plan the next move.

    the arguing amongst ourselves is what is hurting us more because we are blinded by our emotions and become hurtful and unreasonable. too divisive.

  17. benign0

    Jon Mariano, re: “Whatever reason people have that they voted for him is their business and it doesn’t look good on you condemning them for it.”

    Oh, but it IS our business. When people vote idiots into office, EVERYONE suffers. We make should make it our business to understand why Pinoys sell their votes (by your reasoning that’s none of our business if they do, right?), or why they vote inept drunkard-womanisers and child molesters into sensitive government positions.

    It is also why we make the quality of public education an issue — because we do not want a population of intellectually-vacuous people choosing our leaders for us (or eating up politicians’ hollow campaign messages and empty slogans).

    It is easy to point fingers at politicians — because by their very nature, they are easy targets. But when have we stopped to reflect whether these politicians we point fingers at merely reflect the character of our society.

    Isn’t it a bit bizarre that a country of more than 80 million cannot even produce ONE GOOD LEADER?

  18. Jon Mariano

    I’m glad that you care about how others vote. Please enlighten me (and others who care in this blog) how you’re going to correct the problem?

    My personal stand is to do what I think is right (which includes those whom you look down to I’m sure believe the same given their own circumstances and situations) and “influence” others (my family, circle of friends, etc.) of my way of thinking. After doing that (my part) then I’m not going to condemn anybody if the choices they make turn out to be bad (Erap, Gloria, etc.). That is what I meant when I said that what they do with their “right” is their own business. You care about how people vote, what are you going to do about it?

  19. Jeg

    Bencard: What I was referring to was “judgment” of judgmental people, other than individuals on their own PRIVATE morality, acting as moral policemen.

    But that’s what an election is: making judgements. If you deny that there are moral standards by which we can judge, then that’s that. We can’t discuss this any further. But if you agree that there are moral standards of right and wrong that we can apply towards the selection of our candidates and with the conduct of elections and campaigns, then we have to make judgements based on those standards (aside from our judgement on the rightness and wrongness of a candidate’s stand on issues which is a separate thing). We have to, in other words, be judgemental and convince others that our judgement is sound so theyll see things our way.

    You’re right, each person is presumed competent to judge his own morality, but the key word here is PRESUMED. The hard question is: is he actually?

    Would it be better, in your opinion, if each person is presumed UNABLE to judge his own morality? How would that work?

    How could the likes of Jalosjos get elected? This is a tough question to answer. It would be easier if cheating is not a part and parcel of the electoral process here so we can focus on the dynamics of what went on the voters’ mind. Assuming that Jalosjos’s election was fair, we can surmise that the powers-that-be had less credibility to the voters than an evil man like Jalosjos has. This is clear indictment of the powers-that-be, eh? The same is true for the Erap phenomenon as I have pointed out in my post in reply to benign0’s. The university-trained elite, to which benign0 said he belonged, had less credibility than a drunk womanizer. Ouch!

    Mita: benigno is right on a lot of points but people refuse to acknowledge his reasoning…

    Benign0’s opinions are welcome, but benign0’s contempt, I think, is misplaced. He has contempt for the Filipino masses for not being ‘thinking people’ and gives the university-trained elite a pass even though they, the elite, inflicted a substandard education on them and keeps showing the masses, by way of example, that they, the elite, can get away with anything.

  20. toniong pagod

    jeg:

    there it is. those were the words i was looking for last night. it is very easy for the intelligentsia in this country to cast aspersions at the masses, blaming them for their lack of critical thinking and whatnot.

    it’s moving beyond that point that is the hard part.

    we’ve a long way to go, and the elite aren’t helping any.

  21. benign0

    Actually I beg to differ on the assertion that I reserve nothing more than contempt for the masses.

    I may use a lot of politically-incorrect adjectives to describe them, but the results speak for themselves. Whether or not we blame the outcome of our elections on a lack of critical thinking on the part of the masses, the fact remains that there is, in fact, a lack of an ability to critically evaluate issues in Pinoy society in general.

    What issues may seem obvious to some (an example would be our pathetically ending up with nothing more than a debate on Charter Change and Impeachment after millions spent in this election) is completely incomprehensible to most (specifically those who continue to harp about whether the elected bozoes will or will not impeach Gloria).

    I do not define the Pinoy “masses”, necessarily along economic lines. Rather I define the masses more along the lines of which approach to thinking is subscribed to.

    For example, you will see here that the popular (“masa”) approach to regarding the 2007 elections is how it impacts the debate on Cha Cha and Impeachment.

    Whereas the less popular (but true-blue “intelligentsia”) approach to regarding the 2007 elections is whether or not any clarity has been gained around where the country is headed over the next decade or two as a result of this quaint exercise.

  22. benj

    late breaking news! Two KABATAAN Party-list poll watchers abducted and slain by military in Camarines Norte. Only 20 years old….

  23. Jon Mariano

    If we were doing a controlled debate then you’re in order Benign0. But this is a political blog where anybody can say anything he likes. Just like the whole of the web, you can take anything you like which you think is of value to you. If you prefer to argue on specific lines of arguments then that’s your choice but you can’t force others to like your preference as you are suggesting.

    It’s an enjoyable exchange of ideas though.

  24. tagasulung

    Grabe naman. porke nakapag-aral e feeling nila ay sila na lang ang tama lagi at may karapatang humusga. Susme hijo, anong nalalaman mo sa sitwasyon namin dito na kahit kumayod sa buong maghapon hangang gabi e kakapirangot pa rin ang kita at kung hindi pa umakyat sa mga billbords o mang hostage ng pamilya ay di man lang masisilayan ng gobyerno ang aming kalagayan at kung masilayan man e hanggang duon na lang.

    Tapos ipagkakait pa sa amin ang kakaunting perang kinikita namin tuwing eleksyon mula sa mga kandidatong alam naman naming walang pakialam sa amin.

    O mamamasamain pa ang pagboto namin sa mga taong nagpamalas na ng kahandaang palitan sa paraang marahas ang gobyernong aming itinatag para pagsilbihan kami ngunit pinagpapasasaan kami.

    Kung nakikinabang siguro kami sa kasalukuyang pamamalakad e marahil na ganun din kami mag-isip sa mga “intelektwal” dito. Pero sana naman konting respeto sa maliliit na mamamayan. Yung mga ganung klaseng pag-iisip ng mga nakakaintindi na sila lang ang may karapatang pumili at pagpilian ang nagbubunsod sa mga tulad ni PGMA ninyo na mandaya (at hulinghuli sa tape) huwag lang maluklok sa puwesto ang isang mangmang na FPJ nakalimutan na na ang esensya ng eleksyon sa demokrasya ay ang pagkakaroon ng lider na binoto ng tao, hindi yung kung sino ang tingin ng magagaling na nakakaintindi na dapat mapunta sa liderato ng bansa.

    sus ginoo, parepareho lang naman tayong pinaglilingkuran ang sarili sa bawat kagustuhan natin kaya huwag naman sana nating husgahan ang mga tulad naming bumuboto ayon sa realidad na hinaharap namin hindi sa kung ano ang mabuti sa Pilipinas sa bandang hinaharap na sa tingin ninyo ay kaya ninyong sulusyonan. Sa aking pagkakaalala, marami na ring mga tulad ninyong nagisip ng gayon, naluklok sa puwesto, nagkamit ng kapangyarihan at ganun pa rin naman ang sitwasyon ng karamihan sa amin.

    Masisisi niyo ba kami kung ipamalas namin sa aming boto ang aming kahandaang tanggapin ang pagkakaroon ng pagpapalit sa sistema?

  25. cvj

    benign0, you claim that the results speak for themselves, but your conclusions are actually derived from your thought processes. Your analysis, in turn is influenced by your biases, primarily, your high regard for yourself as a member of the true blue intelligentsia and your evident contempt for the masses. That accounts for all the attribution errors that you have been making all these years. Frankly, I believe the mindset you have shown is a major part of the problem because many in the Filipino upper and middle classes think like you. If and when people of your standing start to respect the less fortunate members of our society as equals, then we would be better able to move forward together.

  26. Cesar

    all i can say that the filipinoes are excellent in choosing the new senators in the past few days during the elections,maybe majority will win are on the opposition and thats good.. bt its okey naman if manalo din si Zubiri at angara para naman may makapasok din sa administration..Have a nice day to all readers and visitors in this website.. im from malaybalay city bukidnon..

  27. benign0

    cvj, it is easy for people like us to respect the “less fortunate”.

    The real question though is this: do the Pinoy masa respect themselves?

    For that matter, do Pinoys have any concept of respect?

    True I may have a high regard of myself. But since when has that been a crime. I worked hard to achieve what I achieved. Therefore I owe it to myself to regard myself highly.

    Therein lies the real issue. Why is it you think that Pinoys seem to find it chronically challenging to find in them the inclination to regard themselves highly?

    Maybe it is because:

    (1) we are not willing to work hard enough to achieve enough of what it takes to earn our own self-respect; and,

    (2) because we consider it taboo to celebrate our own personal success (kung baga, you are considered to be “mayabang” if you do).

    Food for thought, dude.

  28. benj

    cvj, it is easy for people like us to respect the “less fortunate”.

    The real question though is this: do the Pinoy masa respect themselves?

    For that matter, do Pinoys have any concept of respect?

    True I may have a high regard of myself. But since when has that been a crime. I worked hard to achieve what I achieved. Therefore I owe it to myself to regard myself highly.

    Therein lies the real issue. Why is it you think that Pinoys seem to find it chronically challenging to find in them the inclination to regard themselves highly?

    Maybe it is because:

    (1) we are not willing to work hard enough to achieve enough of what it takes to earn our own self-respect; and,

    (2) because we consider it taboo to celebrate our own personal success (kung baga, you are considered to be “mayabang” if you do).

    Food for thought, dude.

    I whole-heartedly agree! Everyone who has seen how campaigns are run in the provinces would testify to how the poor are reduced to leeches waiting for whatever freebies the candidates can give them. THEY ARE SCUM.

  29. cvj

    benign0, i have met and interacted with people who have as high self-regard as you, so i realize that it’s a common enough personality trait that cannot be helped. There is no problem with that as long as it does not get in the way of your analysis. As it is, the trouble starts when, in raising yourself up, you then attribute all sorts of defects to those who have not achieved the same level of success as you. You also tend to underestimate the role that luck (good or bad) plays. In doing so, you draw a caricature of the Filipino masa that does not do justice to who they really are. Basing analyses on caricatures has its uses (economists do this with their models all the time) as long one does not confuse these with the real world.

    Anyway, even if your sweeping generalization is true, you cannot use the masa’s collective lack of self-respect as an excuse not to respect them in return. Respecting others is a matter of basic human decency, and a prerequisite for a working society. (On a personal level, it is also a sign of how well someone is grounded to reality.)

  30. Watcher of watchers

    UPn student: Local Iglesia ni Cristo leaders can be bought. Provincial candidates can buy provincial INC leaders, in spite of the municipal INC leaders complaining. I wouldn’t be surprised if the INC chooses the richer candidates. Maybe we can consider this tithing.

    Martin Palermo: The Camarines Norte gubernatorial and congressional bets are all allied with the administration. Only the incoming vice governor is “independent”, and he’s also a member of NPC.

  31. ay_naku

    ay_naku, i didn’t say that. what i’m trying to say is, we can’t correct a mistake with more mistakes. if we accuse someone of cheating- take it all the way and make sure he stays in jail. same with the impeachment. if nothign happens, then we all have to live with it and plan the next move.

    the arguing amongst ourselves is what is hurting us more because we are blinded by our emotions and become hurtful and unreasonable. too divisive.

    So what should be the next course of action Mita? Let GMA get away scot-free? So if the criminal keeps foiling attempts to bring her to justice, then let’s just live with it and move on?

    Too divisive? So the better alternative is to just unite behind GMA? Never mind fair play and justice and the sense of right and wrong, unity is more important? United in what, anyway? Ignominy?

    What is the next move?

  32. Bencard

    Jeg:

    Hate to dwell on this topic but just one more thing and I’m through.

    We agree that each of us is “presumed” to be competent to judge our own morality. In the context of an election, each vote represents our individual “sense of morality” and the ultimate election results represent the collective morality of our society wherein the prevailing moral value (the majority’s) wins. Thus, when candidates like Estrada, Jalosjos, Trillianes, Honasan, Cayetano, Lacson, and Pimentel get elected, it reflects on the kind of “moral sense” the people who elected them possess. Our elected officials are only as moral as the people responsible for putting them into office.

    This, I believe, is the essence of benignO’s thesis on our “intellectually- vacuous” electorate and its sad lack of critical-thinking ability.

  33. Bencard

    “Let GMA get away scot-free?” – ay naku.

    If you get accused of murder and you are acquitted, would you like to be prosecuted for the same alleged felony again and again until your accuser, somehow find a way to convict you?

  34. cvj

    In the context of an election, each vote represents our individual “sense of morality” and the ultimate election results represent the collective morality of our society wherein the prevailing moral value (the majority’s) wins…Our elected officials are only as moral as the people responsible for putting them into office – Bencard

    The above analysis presumes that an individual’s ‘sense of morality‘ can be quantified and simply added together to represent the ‘collective morality of our society‘. It also presumes the absence of contingency, free will and capacity for betrayal and/or redemption on the part of the candidates once elected. Lastly, it takes for granted perfect knowledge by the voters about a candidate’s present and future behavior and ignores the reality that the voters themselves have a limited set of choices.

    This, I believe, is the essence of benignO’s thesis on our “intellectually- vacuous” electorate and its sad lack of critical-thinking ability. – Bencard

    Setting aside his personality disorder, this is another example of Benign0’s tendency to commit attribution errors, this time blaming the electorate for the weaknesses inherent in the current system of representative democracy, weaknesses which can only be compensated for by a healthy dose of direct democracy.

  35. Bencard

    cvj, the track record of the people i listed, which list, again, you deliberately omitted obviously to slant the point i was trying to make, was public knowledge. Each vote cast for them was cast either because, or in spite, of such knowledge.

    Even a “direct democracy” exercised by a majority of “intellectually-vacuous” or morally-challenged people would’nt work.

  36. ay_naku

    “Let GMA get away scot-free?” – ay naku.

    If you get accused of murder and you are acquitted, would you like to be prosecuted for the same alleged felony again and again until your accuser, somehow find a way to convict you?

    Ay naku. Paano maa-acquit si GMA when she hasn’t even been “tried” yet? She has thwarted all attempts to get the judicial ball rolling through means fair and foul — mostly foul. She has ruthlessly used the vast powers of the presidency — and powers that she doesn’t even legally own — to evade accountability. Ilang rebuffs na ba ang natatanggap nya from the SC? Or would you say na si GMA pa din ang tama at SC ang mali?

    You call that being acquitted? Ay naku. Anyway, you are obviously partisan in favor of GMA, no matter how you try to project yourself otherwise. Kahit ano pang ebidensya ang ipakita sayo about her crimes, eh patuloy kang magbubulag-bulagan.

    By the way, have you spoken out against the political dynasty of the Arroyos, with Mikey, Dato, and Iggy? I hope so, para naman di ka masyado obvious na sobrang partisan in favor of GMA. Or would you find a way to rationalize that as well? Onga pala, nabasa ko yung comment na na ok lang yung kaso ni Iggy kasi di naman sya malapit na kamag-anak ni GMA.

    Well, we are all mostly partisan here anyway. Sana lang huwag na tayong magkunwari. Pro-GMA kung pro-GMA, anti kung anti. Ay naku.

  37. justice league

    Manolo,

    I’ve read your work on the “Presidency project”. (Sorry if I got the title wrong since I’m doing this from memory)

    I know that Estrada got about 39% of the vote to get elected. But is there analyses already on the distribution of votes according to class? How much of the votes for Estrada came from the masses and how much of the total votes for the Presidency came from the masses too?

  38. cvj

    “the track record of the people i listed, which list, again, you deliberately omitted obviously to slant the point i was trying to make, was public knowledge…” – Bencard May 19th, 2007 at 2:27 am

    It is not the public knowledge aspect that i’m questioning but your contention that individual morality can be aggregated into a collective morality and that this can be derived from the choices the voters make. That would require the assumptions that i listed above, all of which do not hold.

    (I ommitted your illustrative list of names you gave since i won’t be party to your crude attempt to associate oppositionists with Jalosjos.)

    “Even a “direct democracy” exercised by a majority of “intellectually-vacuous” or morally-challenged people would’nt work. – Bencard May 19th, 2007 at 2:27 am

    You are right to point out that direct democracy is not meant to substitute for whatever intellectual or moral deficiencies of the voters. It is there to compensate for the weaknesses of representative democracy i.e. the failure of the representatives to truly represent the public interest. When this happens, the people have to step in. That is the rationale for people power and the public sphere.

  39. benign0

    cvj, you said: “Anyway, even if your sweeping generalization is true, you cannot use the masa’s collective lack of self-respect as an excuse not to respect them in return”.

    If you recall cvj, this is what I said in my previous comment: “it is easy for people like us to respect the ‘less fortunate’. […] The real question though is this: do the Pinoy masa respect themselves?”

    Kung baga we in the elite constantly wax rhetoric about “equality”, “justice”, and “freedom” for “all”. But do *da masa* really comprehend (or even care to comprehend) these things?

    Same with “respect”. We find it easy to draw on our robust ethical frameworks (honed by good upbringing, breeding, and education) to respect the least of our citizens. But put yourself in their shoes for a minute. Do you think the average kanto boy really respects other people the way we presume to?

    In my experience, really rich people tend to treat their servants with far more respect that middle-to-lower-income employers of domestic help.

    Go figure.

  40. rego

    “Our elected officials are only as moral as the people responsible for putting them into office.”

    Bencard,

    I couldn’t agree for more!

  41. Bencard

    ay_naku, about the “guilt” of PGMA that you are blabbering about, I have debated this point, I think exhaustively, with worthy contrarians, e.g. mlq3, cvj, abe margalllo, etc. I don’t think i want to revisit those issues with you, but you may, if you want, look at the previous posts on the matter since about October 2006.

    About Dato Arroyo, I’m from the district of Camarines Sur that he will be representing and I’m glad he won.
    I don’t see any problem with his joining Mikey in Congress, a much, much larger body than the senate. Iggy is an uncle and not a direct relative of PGMA.

  42. ay_naku

    Thanks for copping out again Bencard. That’s what you always do when cornered.

  43. ay_naku

    And Bencard, please stop blabbering about political dynasties when you can’t even be consistent about it. It just exposes your biases even more.

  44. Bencard

    ay-naku, the beauty of this blog is that i have the luxury of debating with whom i consider worthy of my time, when i want to. go heckle with your own kind.

  45. ay_naku

    Bencard, another beauty of this blog is I can respond to (or–in your words–heckle) specific people whom I choose. And right now I choose the good man from the US of A. You can choose not to pay any attention to my comments of course. But I will continue to expose your obvious biases and logical inconsistensies.

    I mean, I can’t “heckle with my own kind”, since they’d be too smart for it. Better to bug someone whose arguments I can easily dismantle.

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