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Aug 24

The GK ideological split

In the news, Malacañang circles the wagons on ‘Garci’ (see Newsbreak on The President’s Ad Hoc Style) even as Senators split on wiretap inquiry (the Inquirer editorial says an investigation’s in order). Political recycling continues: Arroyo security adviser to head legislative liaison office (so Gabby Claudio’s out; and Joaquin Llagonera?) On the Mindanao front, Sacked officer confirms aircraft were recalled.

This is interesting: More RP firms join race to set up stake in Vietnam.

This may become politically significant: Couples admits ‘divorce’ over Gawad Kalinga and Split rocks CfC; Meloto quits Gawad Kalinga. The debate seems as much about a more secular orientation for GK as it was an effort to maintain the exclusively Catholic orientation, perhaps even vaguely socialist orientation of the movement (a story like this, for example, goes to the heart of the leadership split: Call center training for Gawad Kalinga residents mulled). Anyway, end result: Split in Couples for Christ May Hurt GK Housing Projects.

Overseas, some nifty readings, indeed. Let’s begin with Thailand’s referendum: The long march back to the barracks, which takes a highly critical view of the country’s latest effort at constitution-writing (In Thailand: After the Constitutional Referendum takes a less obviously critical, but extremely cautious, look). A Thai newspaper op-ed piece points to A recirculation of elites in Thai politics (a necessary thing, and when the process is thwarted, it causes even more problems).

And there’s not one, but two, excerpts from “Asian Godfathers” (Joe Studwell) published in Asia Sentinel. Extra! Extra! Read all about it! The first chapter is How to be a Post-war Godfather:

In the Philippines another usurper, Ferdinand Marcos, demonstrated a similar response to Suharto’s with respect to the possibilities of godfather relationships. After winning two presidential terms in (distinctly dirty) elections, Marcos circumvented his country’s two-term presidential limit by declaring martial law in 1972. Like Suharto, he also looked beyond the established godfather elite — in the Philippines, traditional Spanish and Chinese mestizo families — to find some of his key business proxies. The archetype was Lucio Tan, a first-generation immigrant and one-time janitor who became, under Marcos’ patronage, the Philippines’ leading tobacco vendor, as well as having interests in everything from banking to real estate.

It is probable that — as with Liem Sioe Liong, who knew Suharto from the latter’s military postings in central Java — Tan and Marcos knew each other from Ilocos, the president’s home region where Tan had his first, small cigarette factory. Both Suharto and Marcos signalled regime change by promoting new, non-indigenous outsiders to godfather roles. Tan was a clear break in the ethnically more mixed and integrated Philippines because he represented the so-called ‘one-syllable Chinese’ — those who had not assimilated and adopted local surnames.

The promotion of new outsiders achieved two useful things for the dictators: it provided ultra-dependent, ultra-loyal sources of future finance for them and their families; and it served as a warning to the established, more integrated economic elite that it was not indispensable.

In the pre-Marcos Philippines, businessmen of every ethnic make-up had been increasingly successful in overrunning and manipulating a weak parliamentary system and thereby obviating the need to make deals with ultimate political power. Ferdy reversed this trend, though it remains a latent tendency in both the Philippines and Thailand whenever central leadership is weakened.

The second is, what those godfathers focus on: Core cash flow:

In the Philippines a tradition of political allocation of state offices and government largesse built up from the 1920s, under American colonial rule, until it reached its logical conclusion under Ferdinand Marcos. There were trading monopolies for major foodstuff imports, and marketing monopolies for the key local crops — sugar and coconuts.

Eduardo ‘Danding’ Cojuangco was one of the leading Marcos monopolists. (It is a reminder of the small and elitist world in which money and power resides in Southeast Asia that Danding is from the same landed family as Cory Aquino, whose ‘people power’ movement overthrew Marcos in 1986.) Danding, a Marcos favorite, benefited from a new levy on coconut production that funded the development of United Coconut Planters Bank. He was made president of the bank, which in turn bought up most of the Philippines’ coconut milling facilities. Danding’s coconut cash flows were strong enough to buy up much more besides. He became known as Mr Pacman, after the video game character that eats everything in its path.

Marcos monopolies set new standards in the powers they conferred. Lucio Tan’s Fortune Tobacco Co., which was given tax, customs, financing and regulatory breaks that were tantamount to a domestic monopoly on cigarette making, wrote a new cigarette tax code that Marcos signed into law. In the same period Tan is alleged to have printed his own internal revenue stamps to paste on cigarette packets. The cash flow from tobacco propelled him into chemicals, farming, textiles, brewing, real estate, hotels and banking. After Marcos fled to Hawaii in 1986, Tan wrote an open letter to new president Cory Aquino in which he asserted: ‘We can proudly say that we have never depended on dole-outs, government assistance or monopoly protection throughout our history.’

…The crudeness of the monopolies handed out by Marcos and Suharto tends to obscure the almost universal presence of monopolies, cartels and controlled Asian markets in Southeast Asia.

Of course these things aren’t new to Filipinos; but what will be new to Filipino readers is how similar things are in neighboring countries.

Elsewhere, relevant reading in terms of ongoing debates on the the Japan-RP free trade agreement: Indonesia-Japan EPA: Who’s getting the best deal? And In South Korea: “This is What Democracy Looks Like!”. In Foreign Affairs, Elizabeth C. Economy looks at China and asks if in environmental terms, it isn’t taking a harmful “Great Leap Backward”. The Economist asks whether President Putin isn’t building a “neo-KGB state” in Russia. In Australia, an ongoing debate on the nature of Federalism; one issue involves hospitals: Hospital plan puts focus back on ‘new federalism’. By the way,
Australian government caught editing Wikipedia.

The Magnificent Seven looks at American soldiers who’ve published an op-ed piece criticizing their government’s conduct of the war in Iraq; Sir, Can I Publish This, Sir! clarifies the circumstances under which soldiers can criticize their government. Ah, and The Credit Crunch in Financial Markets Remains Severe, says Roubini.

On a lighter note, Vanity Fair on how Ralph Lauren captured the public imagination.

Amando Doronila’s column today, is somewhat related to the above, in terms of the role coercion plays in politics (and by extension, business).

From Patricio Diaz of Mindanews, a two part series, Metamorphosis 1 and Metamorphosis 2, on the evolution of Filipino Muslim political thought.

In his column, Dan Mariano discusses Roberto Verzola’s suggestions for a more productive approach to election automation.

In the blogosphere… I remember that the President’s famous “I. Am. Sorry.” speech had people divided between those for whom it was far from being enough, and others who felt it was a breathtaking act of contrition. The clincher, of course, was that for some it was too little, too late, for others, more than enough. The same applies as news has begun to circulate Society columnist quits over OFW bashing (see also Manila Standard columnist quits after getting OFWs’ ire). For details on the actual letter of apology itself, see Ang Kape Ni LaTtEX. In Piercing Pens, there is more information, including People Asia saying it will publish the letter of apology in lieu of Malu Fernandez’s next column.

As An OFW Living in Hong Kong points out, this was a demonstration of political muscle by OFWs and their families. I am not convinced it was totally an achievement of the blogosphere: it’s still a small circle compared to the online media Filipinos congregate in, in truly significant numbers, and that’s e-groups (and e-mail: the magazine article was scanned, then circulated by e-mail, some time before it finally started being commented on in blogdom). The impact of a statement by press associations, such as the one issued by the Filipino Press Club in Dubai, is also the sort of thing media practitioners from the older generation get impressed.

So my observation is that the blogosphere has become fully integrated into established fora and information-opinion networks of Filipinos, at home and abroad; and that, furthermore, the blogosphere along with other online media now creates its own news and yes, it can rock the older media to its foundations, whether print, television, or radio; and it has become to serve as an effective check-and-balance, not only to the media, but to itself (see Nasty Me and Superblessed, and Tanuki Tales, who is glad it’s all at an end). Everyone got thoroughly scrutinized on this one, not just in blogs but in e-mail discussion groups. It’s not as if it hasn’t always been there, but Class Struggle suddenly got validated (or one step closer, anyway, see Ajay’s Writings on the Wall, which incidentally has the best Malu photo caption ever), and as with all revolutionary notions, it isn’t a picnic as Mao said.

Nonetheless, I think the combined letter of apology and resignation from the paper and magazine, were the proper form of atonement and Malu Fernandez deserves credit for it. An apology is never easy, resignation even harder, and both, combined, is an unusual yet potent combination -and an example of accountability (on her part, to be sure; and even People Asia’s, if and when it publishes her letter; the newspaper dodged a bullet without saying anything). But there will be those who will be watching with keen suspicion, for some time to come (see Taragis na Buhay to, for example).

[email protected] takes a look at the overall implications of the issue for bloggers (a pyrrhic victory, he says). For thorough look on our changing demographics, see Jove Francisco’s tribute to OFWs.

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215 comments

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  1. Bencard

    one more time, cvj, and that’s it for this one! the two qualifying words in the statement you quoted that are relevant to your question are USUALLY and SELDOM – meaning it is not all-inclusive. do they imply “necessarily a bad thing” in your way of thinking? why do i feel that this exchange is becoming a “childish” exercise again?

  2. Karl Garcia

    Rom,Bencard and Vic.
    Thank you very much,all points taken. Me nalimutan ba ako na tao?

    Re:research in a movie I just saw….
    I have seen how this works on Evan almighty,maybe research is just for the movies!

    Again if if it falls down to the SC as in NAIA2 and the likes,then wala tayong magagawa kundi pabayaan na ganito na lang.

    sa bagay mukhang tama naman sa long run ang desisyon ng SC,sa tingin lang natin obstructionists sa economics.

    My point is how can we make laws na kahit minadali ay still well researched. Nothing wrong in dreanming.It is still a numbers game inside the houses and one strong lobby against it outside to prompt it to go to the SC…

    So ganito na lang tayo,sa ngayon,at least. And I won’t pull down the Philippines while saying that.

    lawmaking:bills for sale: kelan ba yon na may paehong parehong bill,kay senator blank at kay senator Loi yung isa. Does that mean that they were approached by one group,seeking luck on who files it first. So we are still ruled by the strong lobby.
    Bale wala nga ang research.

  3. Karl Garcia

    maybe I am tring to focus on the wrong target for research, Constitutionality might not be the issue. Maybe those laws na walang pumapansin,no oppositors,tapos after ilan years malalaman ng marami na walang kwenta pala.
    madami tayo nyan,after a few press releases,and a few interviews tunggkol sa “brainchild nila” na binili naman natin pero wala palang kwenta,let us say constitutionality is not the issue,aside from renaming streets, I am sure madami pa dyan mga batas na wala na ngang feasibility study, wala pang budget,wala pang kwenta at higit sa lahat wala pa tayong pakialam.

  4. Karl Garcia

    Bencard,
    please allow me to give an opinion on your exchanges with your usual suspects…

    Remember your observation about the Devil’s advocate,that is my same observation and speculation.

    Granting that it may seem childish to you,but aren’t you used to discussions in your profession.

    Don’t worry, I wont turn this into a childish exercise.

  5. Karl Garcia

    National heroes day today!

  6. cvj

    Bencard, the complete qualifier you used was ‘seldom, if ever‘. I don’t know how you can interpret what you said about disunity as being other than a bad thing after you concluded with the phrase “…powerful engine of disunity leading to self-destruction“, or is ‘self-destruction’ not necessarily a bad thing?

  7. Bencard

    KG, i agree with you that research would help our lawmakers immensely in writing high quality legislation that could withstand the test of court challenges and time.

    cvj, don’t distort my statement by deliberately omitting key words from it. my exact sentence was “pride and envy are a powerful engine of disunity leading to self-destruction.” this is entirely different from your own interpretation that “politics is necessarily a bad thing”, to which i take exception.

    you know what man? i really can’t believe that a person like you, who otherwise writes decently and can quote famous foreign authors, can be so cheap as to dissect my comment piece by piece in search of something to support your attempt to distort its whole context. btw, i guess i should be accustomed to it by now. you’ve been doing that ever since i joined this blog. (lol).

  8. cvj

    Bencard, since you’ve criticized my dissection, let me try to use a more holistic approach to present the entire context. Your first comment was of the form:

    GK -> example of personality politics (in any organization)

    personality politics -> leads to disunity

    disunity -> leads to self destruction

    I tried to counter that GK’s divisions were reported to be on matters on substance but you would have none of it. In your second comment, you said:

    scratch the surface (of ‘matters of substance’) -> personality politics

    After that, it’s a straightforward step to branch back to the ‘personality politics…self-destruction’ chain in the first comment.

  9. Bencard

    cvj, you again conveniently omitted in your “chain” pride and envy (that result in a type of personality politics) that cause disunity which, in turn, leads to self destruction. still has nothing to do with your necessarily- a-bad-thing interpretation.

  10. Karl Garcia

    “DJB, i think you got it half-right. If the Filipino Christians (nominal or otherwise) and Muslims got together to expel both JI/AQ and the American/Australian soldiers, then we’d be spared this ‘Caliphate vs. Empire’ showdown.”

    No sides taken here cvj, but how on earth can this happen?
    That is why even if just an opinion,I disagree with the notion of leave peace and order to the police and the police alone,ni ang mga sundalo nga hindi kaya,police pa.

    JI/AQ is a cat and mouse game ,how can you expel want you can not catch.

    US and Aussies, expel them? make them violate any form of treaty first and we can ask and request? but to expel them; it so 1992,when we got them out of Clark and Subic. but what is the long run result,if I may ask? More development still concentrated on Southern Tagalog,particularly Calabar;and a slow but unsure development from the Central to the Northern Luzon.Ok maybe that has nithing to do with throwing the Yanks out.

    So,I ask again, How on earth could that be possible?
    Oh,I forgot,the fear factor!

  11. Karl Garcia

    Another question,was it the senate who threw out The Americans or Mt. Pinatubo?

  12. Karl Garcia

    “But when you look at the History on which Puno bases this all, it’s a laughable mockery being an imitation of most public school elementary texts”

    see, even the Chief Justice needs a research team.

  13. Rom

    bencard:any point of contention with the law can be turned into a colorable controversy as to merit the prolonged attention of the SC, bencard. and it’s a lawyer who does that, in representation of the party-in-interest. any lawyer, in fact, can do that, in representation of anyone who claims to be a taxpayer who will be affected by the injudicious spending of public funds in connection with the implementation of an unconstitutional statute.

    It is also true that the law is VALID, until it is pronounced invalid by the SC. But then again, as with the e-vat law, implementation can be suspended by a TRO can it not? And a TRO issued by the SC is of unlimited duration. So therefore, if the lawyer is adroit enough, he can keep that TRO from being lifted for a long long time.

    Longer, in fact, than it takes for me to say, thanks for the compliment, but i wasn’t wrong. 😀 😀 😀

  14. Karl Garcia

    With all this talk of war,ancestral domains,politics,legal advocacies.

    I think the two most important bilsl to be passed are the cheaper medicines bill and the Epira law.

    Cheaper medicines to prove to the transnationals who is boss around here.(with out expeling them)We need it of course, ang daming mahiihirap na di man lang makabili ng gamot til their last breath.

    The Epira law,because of the power rates per kwh is one the highest in the region, if not the world.

  15. cvj

    Bencard, ‘pride and envy’ is already embodied as an attribute of ‘personality politics’, but you’re right, i could have written…

    personality politics(pride and envy)

    …for completeness, but it doesn’t really change much.

    Remembering what MB once said, your skill in denying the obvious would come in handy in a crowded elevator.

    Karl, i also don’t agree that we should leave peace and order to the police alone. We use our military but only our military, suitably led and equipped. What we don’t want to happen is to get entangled in someone else’s war. Remember the logic of the Americans…’we fight them (i.e. Islamic terrorists) over there so we don’t have to fight them over here‘? Guess where over there is.

    On the U.S. Bases, it was Mt. Pinatubo that kicked them out of Clark while it was the Senate that kicked them out of Subic. Another historical instance of an Act of God and an Act of Man working together remniniscent of the defeat of the Spanish Armada in the hands of the violent weather and the English Navy, as well as the defeat of the Mongols courtesy of the ‘Divine Wind’ and the Japanese Samurai.

  16. Karl Garcia

    Benign0 when he was just starting his website(A flashback)

    benign0 :
    Hi MLQ3,

    I’ve set up a Wiki facility to see if I can get the best minds in the blogosphere to collaborate on a single “Solutions Manifesto” that addresses fundamental issues that afflict Philippine society.

    Wiki technology is an open source application that is Web-based and allows anyone who logs on (even anonymously) to edit content directly. The application manages version and provides the Administrator some ability to control access and content; but all-in-all, it is open for all and the resulting content will merely reflect the quality of the contributions.

    Check it out here:

    http://www.seedwiki.com/wiki/getrealphilippines_solutions/

    If you click “edit page” on the left sidebar, you will be taken to a page editor facility that provides a WYSiWYG (what-you-see-is-what-you-get) environment to edit and save that page. You can even add pages if you want.

    Hope to see you there!

    Cheers,
    benign0

    April 24th, 2006 at 10:10 am “

  17. Karl Garcia

    Thanks, CVJ!

  18. cvj

    Karl, you’re welcome. On your question on what the removal of the US Bases accomplished after all these years, i’d say that it did wonders to how we view ourselves as an independent nation. I was for a ‘gradual phaseout’ and against abrogation, but eventually i realized how it was to be really independent. It does feel different (in a good way).

    This, i believe, will also have had an effect on those who grew up without the Bases who have a different mindset from the generation who grew up in the 50’s and 60’s who think America is No. 1. One of the commenters over at Ellen’s (now in her 60’s) also noticed this change in our youth.

    The VFA and the coming of the new US bases in Mindanao threatens all that.

  19. DJB

    PCIJ: The American Bases are coming! The American Bases are coming!

    (Never mind that it would require a Constitutional Amendment to do that, and the US Govt Accounting Office has most certainly accounted for every penny spent on the claimed health facilities, port improvements, road building, school raising, and other legitimate HELP they are giving the Philippines.)

    But you see, there are SOME people who really hate the fact that the Abu Sayyaf terrorists have upstaged the Left in the Order of Battle, and are now reaching out for their favorite grievance.

    They want a share of Jovito Salonga’s glory, and that of the 1991 senate, that did with one vote what Joma and his brigands had been trying to do with “protracted struggle.”

    the sorry thing about the heroism of that senate was that the americans were on their way out anyway because of global demobilization after the general collapse of commumism.

    the people who are loudly saying the US is building a secret base on Mindanao are reallty pitiable.

    To them applies this saying:

    There is no more grievous emotional and psychological loss, than that of a favorite excuse for one’s failures, in terms of the actions of another!

    They really need Sheila Coronel back, because know what, when you read the PCIJ post on this, it’s hollow and baseless. The only investigation they did is on Google, where they cherry picked the right sounding phrases from a website.

    They’ve really come down in professionalism over there since she left for Columbia University.

  20. DJB

    Karl,
    The cheaper medicines bill is a self-fulfilling prophecy, and then some. That’s exactly how Panama (?) recently killed dozens of its citizens importing poison from China and the govt putting it in cough medicine.

    Wait till we have several thousand viajeras shuttling to and from Manila and Mumbai bringing back luggages full of cheap Norvasc, and god know what else. (Remember, there is a whole world of pharmacy over there, and once you open the Pandora’s box of filipino importers,whose main expertise is in DVD piracy and the ripping off of intellectual property rights of others,

    then you’ll see what the cheaper medicines bill really means!

  21. DJB

    We should send Fr. Bossi, PIME, and the Asses of Major Religious Superiors, the BILL for this all-out war.

  22. Karl Garcia

    CVJ,
    Although we are almost at the same age bracket.I see your point on those who grew without the bases,and to the patronizing anything stateside of our generation has diminished (now they are made in China)btw before mattel moved to china,they were made here in the Pinas.

    Nililigaw ko na naman ang usapan.

    But what if the peacemakers suggest to give them a huge chunk of mindanao and many migrants there, object.Whatnow?

    Me personally I have lots of relatives there from first cousins to relatives through affinities(mother side)

    efinitely ayoko din magkagyera sa Mindanao,but expel them by disregarding VFA,bases. Do you really think it would make matter worse.

    What if it is not here but in nearby Indonesia,or China.or in Sinagpore di ba sabit pa din tayo?

    Is it not like, OK clean all the garbage but never setup a dump or landfill in my town.
    Not in my backyard,in otherwords.

    If my analogy of cleaning up garbage vs as you call it expeling AQ/JI and US and Australia is way of the mark; I am waiting for your reply.

  23. Karl Garcia

    DJB,
    call it a rant from an unhealthy consumer.
    Thank you for waking me up there bout the cheaper meds.

  24. DJB

    Seeing as how lots of people think it is okay for the NPA, MILF, MNLF and ASG to bear arms and invite their friends from JI and AQ over to their coming Muslim Juridical Entity, saying these are trying to solve the root causes of our unhappiness, I don’t see why Filipinos ought not invite the Americans back in here through a Constitutional Amendment.

    The recent SWS survey on world public opinion indicates such an amendment would get overwhelming support from the Pinoys.

    I think, like Cuba once did with Guantanamo, we ought to give Basilan to the US. Surely they are just a “indigenous” to Mindanao as the Waziris and Indo-Malayan terrorists crawling all over it now. Just look at all the white mestizos that have so improved their race by the action of biodiversity.

  25. jaxius

    Karl,

    No, just got tied up with something. I’m trying to organize my thoughts about SB 1284 (fixed term for CSAFP). will probably blog it.

  26. Karl Garcia

    Jaxius,
    will be looking forward to that blog.

    karl

  27. Karl Garcia

    DJB,
    Got your point!

    CVJ,per DJB,no bases in Mindanao,so no US and Aussies to expel,not now ,not in the near future.

  28. ronin

    I’ve been working here in Thailand for more than a year now. Though the recently-approved Charter wasn’t to everyone’s liking, it must be understood that it is one of the junta’s rear-guard action as it attempts to ‘bring back’ democracy to Thailand. Simply put, the generals can’t afford not to protect their backs once they turn over state power. As my colleagues here observe, Thaksin is unlike other deposed Thai PMs in the sense that he’s rich enough to buy his way back to power someday and dish out some payback to Gen. Sonthi and his boys.

  29. DJB

    1987 Constitution:
    “Section 25. After the expiration in 1991 of the Agreement between the Republic of the Philippines and the United States of America concerning military bases, foreign military bases, troops, or facilities shall not be allowed in the Philippines except under a treaty duly concurred in by the Senate and, when the Congress so requires, ratified by a majority of the votes cast by the people in a national referendum held for that purpose, and recognized as a treaty by the other contracting State.”

    PCIJ has really lost its mind. How, pray tell, can the US establish a base on Mindanao?

    Do we really need “investigative journalism” like theirs when their loopy claims are rebutted just by reading the Constitution.

    this is not investigative journalism but yellow journalism, which only proves even our Leftists suffer from colonial mentality! They learned their anti Americanism from other Americans. hehehe!

  30. cvj

    Karl, the US bases will only be a magnet for attacks from foreign jihadists. Our neighbors, could of course, choose to host them at their peril.

    On DJB’s denial, try googling ‘US Bases Mindanao’. I ask you, when did our Constitution act as a deterrent to US plans? When the bases were still here after the ratification of the 1986 Constitution, do you think the Americans stopped hosting nuclear weapons in Clark and Subic because of our nuclear-free provision? As i said sometime back, the Americans will try get their bases, if not from the blessings of the Philippine government, from the new ‘Muslim Juridical entity’. It’s mainly there for China.

    I think, like Cuba once did with Guantanamo, we ought to give Basilan to the US. Surely they are just a “indigenous” to Mindanao as the Waziris and Indo-Malayan terrorists crawling all over it now. Just look at all the white mestizos that have so improved their race by the action of biodiversity. – DJB – August 27th, 2007 at 3:18 pm

    Thanks DJB, i’m going to frame this paragraph for posterity right beside your ‘little brown american’ and ‘aristocrat’ remarks.

  31. DJB

    Please note that nowhere in the Constitution does it say only American combat troops are forbidden from Philippine soil.

    Yet where have we ever heard Leftists and Liberals decrying the presence of Bali bombers, JI operatives, and other defintitely armed foreign combatants in Mindanao?

    As for collectors and framers of my earnest remarks, I think it is good to have worthwhile hobbies that hopefully last a lifetime.

  32. BrianB

    “how in the world you can interpret those two quotes as saying “politics is a bad thing”, really escapes me. if, indeed, politics makes unity impossible, how can it be bad if as rego’s group exemplified, it’s split eventually redound to the benefit of many, if not all.”

    Guys, politics is actually one step up the ladder from a warrior-like existence. Politics makes our lives less dangerous, it’s the essence of civilization. The problem is that most of our population see politics as entertainment and not a serious matter. It probably help to think of your congressman or president as your wife or husband with his own agenda in life, etc.

  33. Karl Garcia

    Brian B for a guy who hates quotable quotes, you surely give a good quote of your own.

  34. DJB

    brianb,
    you have to say democratic politics, because from my reading of Genesis, politics antedated war and warriors.

  35. vic

    The process of party leadership election by the Grand National Party of South Korea is something to be admired, for including the General Public into the process, thereby testing the water for the personal acceptance of its leader by the general public. In such country where multi parties contest for the government, the general public pulse should be considered into the process for party leadership instead of just exclusive of the party membership which selection may be rejected by those that are not voting strictly for the Party.

    But every Party can also formulates its own process and rules of leadership selection. Some would just do a certain (example 10% of representatives of members) percentage for every district for direct voting in a convention with the process of elimination until one candidate obtain the majority or on line voting and mail in by all members. For a very young democracy, South Korea process is so mature and deserves a very good look from those aspiring to become one….

  36. cvj

    Since i seem to be the designated ‘leftist/liberal’ in this discussion, i might as well clarify my stand. FWIW, i decry the presence of Bali bombers, JI operatives, and other defintitely armed foreign combatants in Mindanao. So there. (Of course, i can’t speak for anyone else but myself.)

    DJB, as an avid collector of your earnest remarks, as your President W. would say, bring ’em on! 🙂

  37. DJB

    cvj,
    it sounds like an insincere cry, with “so there” as the punctuation mark. but it’s progress and it makes me happy.

    Question: what do you think they are doing in Mindanao?

  38. Devilsadvc8

    they’re breeding seeds of hate of course! what else?
    that’s why we’re having a more and more barbaric muslim insurgency nowadays. they’ve been infected by the foreign jihadists. when before all they’ve dreamed of was an independent Bangsamoro land, now they want all unbelievers dead.

    all this religious fervor would get to a head in the near future. it’s world war 3 and its Jews, Christians, and Muslims waging the war. there’ll be no delineation of nationalities here. you’ll be safe if you’re on land dominated by you’re own religion. otherwise, better leave for one that is.

    I forgot the secularists. Hope they win the war and end this senseless beating over whose God is better. We all have the same God, IMO. He just revealed himself in different names, for the different religions.

  39. cvj

    DJB, not sure if i would call it ‘progress’ since that’s been my stand ever since, but i’m glad to have made you happy nonetheless. I think JI/AQ are there to recruit disaffected Muslims to their cause. With the USA’s help, there’s plenty to be discontented about.

  40. cvj

    Devils, as the PLO’s Yasser Arafat was supposed to have said, “You’re basically killing each other to see who’s got the better imaginary friend.“. The war camps of both sides are basically feeding each other. I think the real struggle is between the pacifists/secularists and jihadists (of both camps).

  41. Devilsadvc8

    and just so everyone understands where I’m coming from (re this issue), I’m a baptized Roman Catholic who’s gone from a complete atheist, to a fervent secularist, to a devout believer in a universal God. Yes, a monotheistic God who is Jehovah, Allah, Christ, and all the Gods in human history as being just one God. And I dream of a day when all religions are ground to dust, and people are left to their own devices, to worship in their own way, without having priests, imams, or whomever hijacking the divine rights to supplication, and claiming exclusive “wisdom” to judge what God is saying to us. haven’t Christ said that the kingdom of God is in man’s hearts, not in buildings or temples?
    Then look into your hearts, and there you will see God. Talk to Him, and perhaps you’d be enlightened that religious organizations are not needed to be a “believer.”

    Perhaps someone should found a new religion. Not secularism. Lets call this religion, Tolerance.

  42. Devilsadvc8

    oh i forgot. i was an agnostic for a time, too.

  43. Devilsadvc8

    this would be good reading:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secularism

  44. vic

    Solutions bebore the problem: Islam and other Religions are getting bigger as the population of our Country gets bigger and their main complaint at the moment is their exlusion for 100% public funding for their religious based secondary education which is extended to the Catholic Schools. Their only qualify for tax credit which is only part of the whole school fees. That will be one of the issues this October election and the contending party which is alternating power with the current government is promising that all religious based secondary schools will be publicly funded when it wins the government as long as they adapt the curriculum mandated by the ministry of education to standardized the whole system. And most religious based schools seem to agree including the muslims, the jews, the budhist and the protestants, etc. So remains the only problem is Between the Separatists and the Federalists and the fight is now in the front, no more underground…

  45. Pilipinoparin

    “Just look at all the white mestizos that have so improved their race by the action of biodiversity”. – DJB – August 27th, 2007 at 3:18 pm

    Are you implying that the whites, the mestizos belong to a superior race? Baka bumangon si Rizal at Mabini sa kanilang libingan niyan.

  46. Devilsadvc8

    well, that basically qualifies me as a humanist, though one who allows, that in cases where science and technology are unable to provide an explanation, God must suffice as an answer. yes, I’m a humanist who believes in a God, though unproven scientifically or conclusively, my experiences and general reasoning would prove otherwise. and my God is an unbiased, universal God, whose people is the entire human race, and who is not selective based on religious affiliations.

    I guess, most of all, I am pro-choice. An advocate in the freedom to choose, with that freedom contingent only on the basis that it be exercised using reasoned thought, and without impeding on the basic human rights of others as agreed upon universally.

    Anyway, my belief of choice is that it is non-existent. And that all choices border on being illusory, with the minimum that we have unable to change past or future, only concerned with the present.

    But we have to allow that choice to matter, don’t we? No matter how negligible that choice may be.

  47. manuelbuencamino

    I nominate DJB president of revived movement to make the Philippines a 52nd state and commander in chief of armed forces against strawmen

  48. BrianB

    “I nominate DJB president of revived movement to make the Philippines a 52nd state and commander in chief of armed forces against strawmen”

    He should forget about it. American’s won’t even make Puerto Rico a state, not even Guam. Karl, If I knew my comment is going to be a quotable quote I’d pass it through Microsoft Word first. 🙂

  49. BrianB

    “you have to say democratic politics, because from my reading of Genesis, politics antedated war and warriors.”

    DJB, you must have been reading Milton’s Paradise Lost and not the Book of Genesis from the Bible.

  50. Bencard

    brianb, if i remember my book of genesis, cain killed his brother abel because of pride-and envy-based politics. i think djb is right on this one, i.e. that “politics antedated war and warriors (if you believe in the old testament, that is).

    rom: those were points well-taken, except that a taxpayer can only have standing as such in a tax-oriented case where he/she has an actual interest, not in any other case where he/she has no real cause of action. as to tro, as its name implies, it is merely temporary and purely discretionary with the court (i.e. as when irreparable harm would result on the petitioner if the law was implemented with respect to him.) this temporary stay only benefits the petitioner in connection with the case actually before the court, and not the entire population.
    in cases, involving tro’s, the court is charged with the duty to adjudicate the issues expeditiously, lest the opposing party him/herself suffers irreparable damage. theoretically, it cannot be abused or manipulated by an enterprising lawyer no matter how deep the pockets of his clients are. therefore, i don’t see how a tro can be capriciously prolonged to indefinitely delay either the general or specific implementation of a law or executive order.

    cvj, if the best you can do is invoke buencamino’s opinion as to my skill in pointing out fallacious arguments, or lack thereof, then you really are desperate para lang makalusot.(lol).

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