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The GK ideological split
By mlq3 Posted in Daily Dose on August 24, 2007 215 Comments 9 min read
Book of the Week Previous Like a bad case of the Clap, it keeps coming back Next

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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  1. “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).”

    Bencard, look at the lower animals. Big and strong almost always means you get to lead the pack. In politics, you can be short, bald, fat, you can even be stupid.

  2. That’s why I don’t necessarily look down on mangmang politicians, like Erap. I know in my heart, politics is better than pure Darwinism.

  3. “or perhaps you think Lucifer was just having a little tantrum?”

    Don’t be crazy. If you’re agnostic, then be agnostic but don’t be a heretic. There’s no politics in heaven. That’s “Paradise Lost” wherein politics existed in heaven, at least in Satan’s point of view.

  4. brianb, politics as entertainment is ok. but when people get killed because of it, it is not at all funny. even “stupid” politicians can be violent and, therefore, dangerous.

  5. pilipinoparin: biodiversity improves all races, that is why I used an ambiguous pronoun in the phrase.

    Brianb: why do you say politics is better than pure Darwinism (survival of the fittest by natural selection)? You can say anything you want about politics, but let’s get our science straight, okay, and not spread ignorance, because short, fat, bald, nonviolent species often survive under pure Darwinism because they are short, fat, bald, and nonviolent. Maybe you misunderstand the meaning of “pure Darwinism”? And even ideas, as memes, are possibly governed by Darwinism, but the scientific jury is still out on the notion. Under pure Darwinism, the notion of the fittest is not the same as in human politics.

    MB: you seem to be having a mental block nowadays. Here and on my blog you are out of ammo all the time, firing dud ad hominem with a frustrated whine.

  6. “short, fat, bald, nonviolent species often survive under pure Darwinism because they are short, fat, bald, and nonviolent.”

    Your talking about something else, not Darwinism. A later development from Darwin’s theory. I think it’s called the “founder” theory. It’s like this: four guys are walking down the road. Three are fit and strong and one is short and fat. Three got struck by lightning and are dead. The fat guy survives, and he impregnates all the women.

    You’re only confusing yourself by mixing up all these diverse theories: Dawkins, Darwin, biodiversity. And there is no such thing as scientific jury on memes. Heh, memes is a concept like postmodernism. Does it really exist. Maybe they are too obvious to even warrant names.

    And short, fat, bald and stupid men don’t survive on Darwinism. They survive on pity, on the underestimation of other men, on the quirks of women. Last but not the least, because they pose no obvious threat to powerful men they survive… Politics.

  7. Bencard,

    what I was trying to say about politics, is that people only see it at a distance and compare politicians to the actors and actresses on TV. If they think of them as husbands, wives, neighbors, extended relatives, like Europeans do they will realize how irritating, destructive and dangerous these people are. The threat is immediate and so are the countermeasures, at least these countermeasures can be effected with immediacy, and not as most Filipinos imagine, in some abstract future time. That’s what I mean when I wrote that they should look at politicians the way they look at their wives and husbands.

    Imagine yourself simply wishing that your wife or husband be faithful to you at all times. In these cases, people react quickly and implement countermeasures. I don’t have to specify, do I?

    Filipinos deal with politicians the way they deal with soap opera characters: they feel for them, hate the bad guys, root for the good guys, but that’s all. They do not interact. They are passive. They do not go in there and influence the outcomes of events.

  8. Guyz and Galz, just a lil time out. First let me apologize to any one here who’s feelings I may have hurt by some of the things I say, and how I say it.

    but i catch myself enjoying the tit for tat too much. Like shooting fish in a barrel I’d like to say, but that would only be more of the same.

    I know some of you are abroad, perhaps even in America, where despite 9/11, the illusion of distance and relative safety has perhaps taken over again. I can understand why, for even here in Manila, so close to the danger, somnambulism is rampant too.

    Yet there is more to this than meets the eye, and years from now, I do believe that 2007 will be seen as a turning point in history.

    I think it is incumbent on us to decide where we really stand on the most fundamental of values and beliefs, before the major terrorist attacks on the Philippines begin, and those values and beliefs are tested in blood and fire. I do not believe that these attacks can now be stopped. I hate for that to be what it will take to awaken the sleepers. And until they do, prevention is not yet even an option or a possibility.

    In that soon-to-be, even the most acrimonious here will see how small and futile our personal vanities be.

  9. The mind is a filter feeder. It absorbs and largely becomes what it eats. Vanity often sets in once a critical mass of knowledge has been absorbed, but for some reason is also self-absorbed and unconscious of the need to grow forever.

    But humility is not the opposite of vanity. Rather it is wisdom, a most mysterious and elusive compound of both thinking and living and suffering.

  10. BrianB,
    I know that would not sound right quotable quote, I mean you can quote on your own fine. As you have said,as well,that you hate pretentious stuff.

  11. Speaking of which,by the way we “frame”or “collect” coments,it is a form of quotable quote.

    No offense to anyone,because I do that to,and I am speaking for myself.

    In poltics antedating war,even murder,when saying Genesis,remeber that temptation stuff eating the fruit from the tree of wisdom;that is purely Genesis.And who knows Milton kust have read Genesis too.

    When we say Darwinism,we associate it for the theory or law he is known for like Survival of the fittest through Natural Selection. but brianb may be right Law of of Gravity was never called pure newtonism.And theory of Relativity was never called Einsteinism,instead it is called Einstein’s theory of realtivity.

    what can be called pure,Diamonds are called the purest form of carbon and yet it can still be subdivided to many karats

    oh,what ever!

  12. To the one searching for God named Devil’s;by the way you said it,I assume that the search is not over because youu still want to search some more.

    I don’t believe in identity crisis should be left to puberty,as one said here better start believing in something and as one said, Decide with reason,Act with conviction.

    all i can say is:
    never decide when you are angry and never make promises when you are happy.

  13. Abe,

    Nothing is original in this world only patented,and copyrighted ones and who ever claims it ..

    I will never claim ownership to it, because it was a forwarded text.

  14. If only the telcos can upload all those forwarded text messages into a server,we will have either of two things,they maybe treasure or junk in the net.

  15. By the way when one said memes are the genetic form of memory,and one said that he does not thhink so,or that was not he was talking about when inheriting memory;
    Another way to define meme is to spread catch phrases like what we are doing now through internet memes.

    another point of confusion.

    When they say they are humanists,do they mean they are scholars or academicians in Humanities? or simply prolife,pro dignity and whatnot?.

    Pinapahirap ko ba ang simple?

  16. yeah, brianb. filipinos should see their politicians as ‘real people’ rather than mythical or make believe heroes as in the movies. after all, they also go to the bathroom everyday, and put their pants the same way – one leg after the other.

  17. Brianb,
    You don’t understand Darwinism or its principles. You are obviously wrong in your interpretation since there are many short, bald, fat, nonviolent men who are in positions of power and distinction in the world, along with tall, hairy, thin, violent hunks.

    Who’s confused?

  18. Karl,
    There are several varieties of indolence:
    physical indolence
    is when you are too lazy to use your body.
    mental indolence
    is when you are too lazy to use your mind.
    BLOGDOLENCE is when you see blogging as a means of showing off, since it is so safely abandonable at any given time and we are all largely anonymous. Only MLQ3 has a real face in the real world that this blog’s participants occupy.

    I blog and comment for the rare but invaluable experience of being proven wrong by someone who disagrees with something I may have thought I actually believed in, but discover that I shouldn’t.

    We learn the most from those who disagree with us! but only if they can convince us and we have enough of an open mind to accept the possibility.

    Thus blogs are whetstones for the brain.

  19. I think it is incumbent on us to decide where we really stand on the most fundamental of values and beliefs, before the major terrorist attacks on the Philippines begin, and those values and beliefs are tested in blood and fire. I do not believe that these attacks can now be stopped. I hate for that to be what it will take to awaken the sleepers. And until they do, prevention is not yet even an option or a possibility. – DJB

    I agree with your advice that we take stock of our values. I would also like to add that we should do an inventory of our prejudices. I do hope that if and when the terror attacks happen, we will not be like the Americans who lashed out at an entire people resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands (and counting).

  20. One thing is clear to me. Prevention by means of preventive war is a war crime especially if the perceived threat is manufactured or sexed-up. This belief is based on the fundamental value of respect for life.

  21. “I thought we got the point across that indolence is judgeMENTAL? Hehe”

    its not indolence but BLOGDOLENCE that is judgeMENTAL.:)

  22. DJB,

    Thanks again for the clarification.

    Take care,sir!

    Ako din as I have said i am here to learn.

    For someone Identified and not anonymous,I think you have

    expressed views that are let us say not so popular.

    I remeber the times when you still have that enigma; When

    people kept on asking who on earth is DJB Rizalist?

    Now, that we have seen your face,on tv on pictures of

    blog conferences and what not;the enigma may be gone but

    you stuck to your convictions.

  23. CVJ,

    About that bases,On news reports here,it was said that the structures are only temporary.
    Now, they tell us.

    What I am not comfortable with, are the rumors that the soldiers are their bacause of rewards from Uncle Sam,now that is plain horse manure.

    But what about the rumor that the incumbent gov of Basilan is behind the attacks from way back as more than a decade ago,when Abu sayaff was not even heard of yet,pano na yan? Hirap talaga pagmagaling maglinis ng evidence,konting deadma at denial lang,malilimutan na natin. Eto,the whole incident pag kumalma malilimutan siguro natin ito let us give or take six months.(isali na natin ang mga comments sa comment thread ng blog)

  24. okay abe,
    so you think the ambush killings and beheading were sexed up? invented? not true? what are you? a coprophiliac?

    btw, i looked it up. the last “all-out war” was also sparked by a kidnapping for ransom of a Father Blanco and the hostaging of 300 civilians by the MILF at the Kauswagan Town Hall. It was in the fiercest gun battles of recent memory that Ariel Querubin won the highest military honors for bravery in action and the daring rescue of every single hostage (not one was killed.)Then followed the fight to liberate the Narciso Ramos Hiway and the capture of Camp Abubakr.

    Sexy enough for you human rights acivists?

    congratulations cvj, you recognize the existence of “terror attacks”.

    What do you suggest we do? Demonstrate against American combat troops delivering health care and building bridges. Call for peace talks and forget about the murders and beheadings and concentrate on peace talks some more?

    Why do object to laws being enforced (just RPC ones not the HSA) by the military when the police can hardly be expected to go against such forces?

    If you guys wanna fight Bush, why don’t you go and fight Bush in the name of the Taliban, and leave the Filipinos to save their Republic?

  25. Karl,
    My reading of the SWS survey on world public opinion is that the views of the vast majority of the Filipinos are very much in line with mine, both here and among OFWs. In fact, I would say that I am actually slightly to the Left of the middle of the Silent Majority.

    Leftists by contrast are a marginalized sector so disconnected from the way the people feel that “weird” is a better description. Most of them just don’t hear themselves talking.

    The only reason they are still allowed to make fools of themselves by the people is because the people do understand democracy and freedom and they know the totalitarians would just as soon destroy the system they are merely using.

    But the CPP NPA and their Left front organizations aren’t even he baddest asses on the block anymore because all those macho man revolutionary ex professors and professional activists wouldn’t have the balls to hack off a human beings head.

    They are just too petit-bourgeois.

  26. “One thing is clear to me. Prevention by means of preventive war is a war crime especially if the perceived threat is manufactured or sexed-up. This belief is based on the fundamental value of respect for life.”

    I don’t think we have to worry about that. We have had 1,903 terror incidents from 1984-1997. 394 terror incidents from 1998-2004.(and counting) Despite the injuries, fatalities and damages done to private citizens, property, and business, the never ending cycle of cease fires/peace talks and resuming military action has always been the norm.

  27. Does anybody know if the MNLF are Sunnis maybe, and the MILF are Shia? Hmmmm maybe we should give them each their own homelands, right next to one another, say on either side of the Pulangi River?

    We won’t have to lift a fascist finger to solve our problems!

  28. oh cmon DJB. you want what’s happening in Iraq to happen in our backyard? ‘coz what’s tearing Iraq apart is not just the terrorism (agst the americans), you know. it’s the beginnings of a civil war bet the Sunnis and Shias. At least in here, you don’t see the majority muslim factions killing their minority counterparts. or has it begun already?

    Karl, I think when people claim they’re humanist, they’re largely admitting in believing in the advocacies of humanism, which largely run similar to secularism. academics of humanities i think, are not included.

    BrianB, of course there’s no politics in heaven. The politics was in the war, call it a schism, if you will. hey, maybe Lucifer invented politics…

    on blogdolence, its an oxymoron i think. what is blogging after all, if not engaging in mental exercise? it maybe a kind of physical indolence, but not a mental one. and saying we are largely anonymous is too encompassing, i think. i esp take exception to that. i may use a pseudonym here, but i link my blog (and my friendster profile) here, and you can’t claim that to be hiding behind the cover of anonymity, when im as exposed as anyone else who go by their true names and faces in their blogs are. yeah, i may not be as famous as Manolo or as DJB, yet. but that doesn’t make me a coward.
    i bear my whole self open to the web, and you call that cowardice? i hope you were just referring to those who still hide behind anonymity and not all bloggers in general.

  29. DJB,

    You outdo Miriam with your flages of brilliance.

    You mistake ideology for knowledge and wisdom.

    Miriam and Joma rolled into one.

  30. “You don’t understand Darwinism or its principles. You are obviously wrong in your interpretation since there are many short, bald, fat, nonviolent men who are in positions of power and distinction in the world, along with tall, hairy, thin, violent hunks.”

    You’ve been lazy on research and on reading other people’s comments. It’s politics who make fat, bald ugly men rule, not Darwinism, Kaya nga sabi ko, progress yung politics from Darwinism.

  31. Pfsh! What does Darwinism have to do with politics? Do politicians randomly mutate? Politicians are made, some even self-made. They are not a product of random mutation, but are a product of intelligent design – and I use the word ‘intelligent’ rather loosely. 😀

  32. “BrianB, of course there’s no politics in heaven. The politics was in the war, call it a schism, if you will. hey, maybe Lucifer invented politics…”

    Devil, ang sinasabi mo eh meme yan nang libro ni John Milton.

    That’s why people describe a decline in politics during dictatorships and an absence of politics during tyrannical regimes. May politika ba sa NoKor?

  33. “Pfsh! What does Darwinism have to do with politics? Do politicians randomly mutate? ”

    That’s what I said. Darwinism for animals and some primitive men, politics for homo sapiens sapiens. My point is, every time a business man or social theorist points out Darwinism, I want to tell him that: That social Darwinism is actually a primitive mentality. Politics is way better. Of course, politics can be crap too, but, as I explained it, only because the masses don’t participate in politics. They are mere spectators, watching TV etc. If they are political like Europeans are political, and I don’t mean they have to be MLQIII studying politics and current events all day, but just mildly interested and even casually interested in politics things would be better.

    Kaya spoiled politico natin, masa nanonood lang.

  34. Brian, oo na. kanina mo pa sinasabi yan. hagilapin ko na lng si Milton pag nakita ko. di ko pa kasi nabasa kaya excused naman siguro ako kung medyo ignorante ako sa kanya. di ko naman kini claim na orihinal ideya ko eh.

    “May politika ba sa NoKor?”

    oo naman. kahit sa loob ng sarili nilang partido meron. sila-sila rin nagsasaksakan ng patalikod. one-party state does not preclude the absence of politics. even tyrannical regimes have politics brewing behind. it’s naivety to even suggest politics can be separated from human activities.

  35. Ok DJB,
    when I sa unpopular I meant in this thread,but now that you have mentioned SWS surveys,I will base mine on what I see on TV,even people in Sulu welcome the Americans with open arms.

    Devils, thanks for clearing up that humanist question of mine.

  36. Devil,

    Politics is a vague word, is that what you mean. Or do you mean specifically about human behavior with regards to the manipulation of power. Kasi, pag ganoon ang definition at may absolute tyrant ka, halos wala nang pulitika yan, eh. Kasi lahat nang sinasabi nya nasusunod. Wala nang leverage ang ibang tao. All you can do is humor him and perhaps even seduce him.Yes, these are political techniques too, but if you are all-knowing and omnipotent like God, wala nang pulitika lag, disobedience na lang.

    That’s what’s wrong with secularism, it has no comprehension of religion.

  37. brian,

    Re: North Korea

    Is it not that totalitarianism,authoritarianism and Stalinism a form of polititics?

    And even if North Korea is a one party system,the party is made up of coalitions.

    Since Wikipedia is handy,I will refer to it and cut and paste:

    North Korea is a single-party state with a Stalinist, authoritarian, and totalitarian regime. The governing party is the Democratic Front for the Reunification of the Fatherland, a coalition made up of three smaller parties, the Workers’ Party of Korea, the Korean Social Democratic Party and the Chondoist Chongu Party. These parties nominate all candidates for office and hold all seats in the Supreme People’s Assembly.”

    Regarding secularism, that it has no comprehension of religion.

    The thing is they do,like the separation of church and state. The state has comprehebsion of religion butonly wants to separate from it,thus secularism is simply putis to separate from religion.

    Politics maybe vague,but it is everywhere.

  38. congratulations cvj, you recognize the existence of “terror attacks”. – DJB

    Since i’ve long recognized the existence of such attacks, I guess you’re addressing that remark to my strawman counterpart. If your idea of ‘saving the Republic’ is turning over Basilan to the Americans to set-up a Guantanamo-like base there, then i believe you’re more of an asset to the Taliban than us guys.

  39. well, I guess Karl had made my case for me. both abt the absence of politics in a tyranny or secularism having no comprehension of religion.

    perhaps its the religious fanatics out there who really has no idea abt what secularism is. maybe that is bec they automatically assume all secularists are satanists w/o bothering to find out if even all of them does not believe in God or a god. or even w/o bothering to notice that what secularists are fighting for is not killing their God or their religion, but merely removing the dominant religious groups’ influence in the govt to the disadvantage of the minorities.

    and Brian, im not an agnostic (now). i said i was, for a time. and being a heretic? to which religion?

  40. Despite the injuries, fatalities and damages done to private citizens, property, and business, the never ending cycle of cease fires/peace talks and resuming military action has always been the norm. Pedro

    The “norm” sometimes is good business. There’s an old word for it – “merchants of death.”

    Six years ago

    Helsingin Sanomat and The Boston Globe produced a joint report showing that both the Philippine military and government have been involved in a cover-up over Lamitan incident hat took place in June 2001. The tragedy, a web of collusion between the AFP, Abu Sayyaf, local wardlord and blood money, claimed several innocent lives.

    At that time the question raised was whether the AFP is even interested in getting rid of the Abu Sayyaf Group.

    Eye-witnesses to the incident have recounted that ASG leaders managed to escape from the Lamitan siege by fleeing to safety from a high-walled hospital complex that was surrounded by AFP units.

    Hours after the “Great Escape,” the AFP launched an attack on the complex, with only civilians inside.

    A ransom of 25 million pesos was paid to secure the release of hostage Reghis Romero II and two others. According to a friend of Romero and a catholic priest, the money was split among the ASG, the military and some politicians.

    The Present

    Former chief of staff of the Armed Forces, Biazon made the connection between the ambush in Tipo-Tipo on July 10, 2007 and the siege of Lamitan on June 2, 2001, after a meeting with Senator Antonio Trillanes IV at the latter’s detention cell in Fort Bonifacio during which Trillanes claimed that a conspiracy among “ranking government officials” had led to the killing of 14 Marines and the beheading of 10 of them in a seven-hour ambush of a military convoy in Tipo-Tipo.

    Sexy enough?

  41. Wow Abe, there’s corruption in the AFP? Well since you put it that way, let’s just raise the white flag and push for the Islamic state I mean an autonomous Mindanao. I heard the PNP and NBI are also corrupt. That’s going to have to invalidate all the sexy arrests they’ve done against murderers and rapists. We should probably put a hold on all law enforcement, since these people are corrupt. I’ve also heard this sexy rumor that the LTO, BIR, DOJ, BI, DOH, DOL, POEA, DFA are all corrupt.

    There was a question that was asked back then, asking why US military and humanitarian assistance always come in the form of equipment and expertise instead of funding or cash. Of course the question was answered in a politically correct way so as not to offend, but everybody in the US side including the local audience knew what really was the answer. A little bird told me that ransom payments between Abu sayaf and the AFP during combat patrols become hard to pull off when armed US visitors are tagging along (out of shame I suppose). Information has been coming out about AFP military hardware and ammunition being sold to various groups. Then we get news about a possible reduction in US Military assistance. Hmmm, maybe US personnel are not as stupid as we think they are.

  42. “Is it not that totalitarianism,authoritarianism and Stalinism a form of polititics?”

    Totalitarianism is the end of politics.

  43. Information has been coming out about AFP military hardware and ammunition being sold to various groups. – Pedro

    Wiretapping has been going on with or without the Anti-Wiretapping Law and HSA. It is just one of the instruments of POWER. But when some underpaid low-level officers of the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces Philippines (aka Isafp) start selling their “poisoned fruit,” something is really, really wrong with the Philippine economy.