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Nov 15

Autumn of the Patriarch

According to the police, PNP: Akbar was target: Basilan politics eyed in bombing.

My column for today is House in the line of fire.

This piece, The March of the Caudillos, makes for interesting reading, combined with Venezuela scrambles for food despite oil boom and Putin: I have a moral right to continue wielding influence.

A Surigao story I recently saw in a mailing list I subscribe to:

One of the more original Surigaonons is the Ecleo family. The old man Ecleo passed away one week before the elections and he was running for Congressman. The family immediately asked the Comelec to make the wife his replacement and news about the death of the old man Ecleo was quashed.

It was hard, though, to hide news like the death of a political bigwig, so the family came up with a heck of an idea. Since most of his constituents lived in islands close to the mainland, however, they made announcements that Ecleo would be visiting the islands to shoot down the “rumors” about his death being exaggerated. So they put him in a banca on a chair and with fishing line and disguised straps, actually went around the islands, his arms waving up and down. His head turned over by an alalay to the side of the island being visited. They kept the poor guy pumped with enough formalin to last at least two weeks, but only need[ed] ten days, actually. His poll watchers were at each precinct to tell the voters to write the family name or his wife’s name when they got to the polls. Astoundingly, he won.

And, well, just because I can, here’s a link to an entry by Dissenting Opinion who doesn’t believe in criminalizing necrophilia.

And in remembrance of Commonwealth Day, Bacolod preserves Tindalo tree planted by Quezon.

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  1. cvj

    Kulit, two years ago in this blog, i got into an exchange with Dodong above on the issue of the Florida ‘hanging chads’. By way of retort, he told me:

    You can’t even resolve your own local leadership much less comment on foreign government. – dodong at January 26th, 2006, 6:56 am

    I didn’t consider his objection valid because it focused on the speaker, i.e. me in my capacity as a Filipino (i.e. an outsider) who presumably has no right to comment on matters involving the USA more so because, according to him, i “can’t even resolve [our] own local leadership“. Rather than address the argument, he chose to focus on the person making the argument, which is the defining characteristic of ad hominem attacks.

    In the same manner, the fact that Vic, D0d0ng, Bencard, Rego are expats does not automatically take anything away from what they say. Rather than focusing on the messengers, we should focus on the message(s). Is the message compelling? Is it the truth? Is it well-reasoned? If the answers are ‘yes’, then the identity of the writer and even their tone of delivery should not matter.

    That is not to say that context should be disregarded. The fact that you are in the Philippines directly experiencing events while they are not does carry weight (which is the point that manuelbuencamino has tried to convey to Bencard). The good thing about Vic’s approach is that he does not ignore context. He conveys his first hand experiences in Canadian governance as an example of best practices for us to observe and hopefully replicate.

  2. grd

    “In 2006, we send P12.8 billion in remittances. 56.4% of that was from North America (US and Canada). The amount is even bigger this year to reach P14 billion.”

    You are right, we are miles away. We are one of the major drivers of Philippine economy why its currency is going strong. Think before you criticize us because it will fall flat into your own face… dodong

    there, another affirmation of the “utang na loob” ng pilipinas sa mga taong tulad ni dodong. are you speaking now on behalf of all the ofw’s around the world? but if i remember it right, not so long ago in one of the discourses here you’re belittling the contributions of the ofws’ as a major factor in boosting the phil economy saying ofws’ spend most of their incomes abroad and whatever remains or the savings are the monies being sent to the phils (and i wrote, it must be true for immigrants specially those in the US but not for ofw’s working in other countries like the middle-east where basic salaries are mostly sent and spent home). some kind of a double talk huh?

    but are you reading the data correctly for saying that you people (North Americans) sent 56.4% of the total remittances last year? or you deliberately left out the footnote which says:

    straighten out your facts and don’t try to put a spin on it. it has been clarified already that remittances from other countries specially those in the middle-east are mostly coursed through the US. so there’s no truth to what you’re saying that major remittances are coming from North America.

  3. grd

    sorry, something’s went wrong with my earlier post. here’s the remaining part:

    but are you reading the data correctly for saying that you people (North Americans) sent 56.4% of the total remittances last year? or you deliberately left out the footnote which says:

    Breakdown may not add up to totals due to rounding off.
    1/ Data are based on bank reports submitted to BSP as contained in FED/IOD Form I prior to April 1999 and FX Form 1 from May 1999 onwards. Beginning 2001, transactions reported by thrift banks, OBUs, and FOREX corporations are likewise included. DATA ARE NOT TRULY REFLECTICVE of the ACTUAL COUNTRY SOURCE of REMITTANCE or COUNTRY OF DEPLOYMENT of overseas Filipinos (OFs) due to the COMMON PRACTICE of REMITTANCE CENTERS in VARIOUS CITIES ABROAD TO COURSE REMITTANCES THROUH CORRESPONDENT BANKS MOSLTY LOCATED IN THE U.S. SINCE THE BANKS ATTRIBUTE the ORIGIN of FUNDS TO THE MOST IMMEDIATE SOURCE, U.S., THEREFORE APPEARS TO BE THE MAIN SOURCE of OFs’ REMITTANCES.
    Source: DES-BSP

    straighten out your facts and don’t try to put a spin on it. it has been clarified already that remittances from other countries specially those in the middle-east are mostly coursed through the US. so there’s no truth to what you’re saying that major remittances are coming from North America.

  4. grd

    cvj,

    it’s not about being xenophobic (i would have been out of job a long time ago if i am). as what i and kulit have been saying here, and to reiterate what he just wrote;

    “it’s just the attitude that’s irritating. if you really like doing it, help out, silently, sincerely… and i didn’t mean you personally — just those ex-filipinos who display the aforementioned attitude”…

    if you’re truly is a modern day rizal as one commenter here suggests, then you should know what we really meant here. if someone’s sincere, then he should not be affected personally.

    Rather than address the argument, he chose to focus on the person making the argument, which is the defining characteristic of ad hominem attacks… Rather than focusing on the messengers, we should focus on the message(s)… cvj

    if you can practice what you preach, i will become one of your disciples.

  5. cvj

    grd, how can someone ‘help out’ silently in a blog?

  6. ronin

    “grd, how can someone ‘help out’ silently in a blog?” – cvj

    by remaining as a lurker? 😉

  7. cvj

    by remaining as a lurker? – grd

    Then Vic and the other Filipino expats can also ask you to practice what you preach. But if everybody did that, where would that get us?

    You of all people know first hand how it is to be silenced so why do you want to do unto others what you did not want to be done to you?

  8. ronin

    hey, chill out, cvj. i’m just horsing around. 🙂
    i’m a martial law baby, so i know how it is being suppressed.

    anyway, my take here is this: if these guys who have ‘changed’ nationalities offer their two cents in this forum, then let them. in the first place, this is a free country. second, this is not our blog, it’s manolo’s, right? we’re all guests here and must behave accordingly. third, if some posters here are irritated by these ‘ex-filipinos’ attitude (as what kulit said), then the answer would be to offer a better argument and not get dragged by all these name-calling, holier-than-thou, feeling superior cards, right?

    peace. 🙂

  9. kulit

    hope you’re not being deliberately daft cvj, “silence” here means being silent on what should be kept to oneself — i.e. i send my money home to my relatives, therefore the country owes me or it gives me the right to be high and mighty, and the fact that I have renounced my filpino citizenship should be ignored. it’s like charity, if one is sincere, then there’s no point of announcing one’s deed, unless one wants to personally profit from it.

  10. grd

    cvj, hilo ka na ba? obviously, i’m no ronin.

    grd, how can someone ‘help out’ silently in a blog?.. cvj

    obvious ba kung ano ang ibig naming sabihin ni kulit? try figure it out jose rizal.

    just one more thing, what do you mean by “help out” in a blog? oh, yes, i remember you said it before, blogging is a patriotic act.

    and again, if i may reiterate, practice what you preach.

  11. grd

    cvj, if you think i’m trying to get personal with vic or naykika here, you’re wrong. i know him way back in another space and i even defended him when others start criticizing his obvious biases. but i’m one who calls a spade a spade just like in this case.

    i’m not trying to suppress anyone. i’m a person who appreciates a good deed and a good argument whenever i see or read one regardless of one person’s political leaning but i wont hesitate to criticize either if i see it fit even if the person and i are on the same side of the fence. i don’t argue just for the sake of arguing. and i’m one who easily accept my mistake if i’m proven wrong. hindi ako namimilosopo just for the sake of winning an argument.

    when i say, practice what you preach, it’s all in reference to your statement below.

    Rather than address the argument, he chose to focus on the person making the argument, which is the defining characteristic of ad hominem attacks… Rather than focusing on the messengers, we should focus on the message(s)… cvj

    for you to give that advise and be heard, you have to be consistent. and try not to be judgmental. this is in reference to your conclusion that ronin and i are one and the same. i don’t believe that was not deliberate considering a person of your intellect.

  12. ronin

    “this is in reference to your (cvj’s) conclusion that ronin and i are one and the same.” – grd

    hey, i’m flattered to be mistaken with another poster here, but for the record, i’m definitely not grd…nor any other person in this forum/blog.

    there is only one ronin.

    🙂

  13. cvj

    grd, ronin, sorry guys grd is right, nahilo ako, the mix up was not deliberate. i was waiting for grd’s response and i shot from the hip. my apologies.

    anyway, my take here is this: if these guys who have ‘changed’ nationalities offer their two cents in this forum, then let them. in the first place, this is a free country. second, this is not our blog, it’s manolo’s, right? – ronin

    Yeah, i remember it was Manolo who invited Vic for some inputs on the Canadian system of government.

    vic, i’d appreciate a copy of your comments re: parliamentarism. – mlq3 March 27th, 2006 at 11:30 am

  14. vic

    “send my money home to my relatives, therefore the country owes me or it gives me the right to be high and mighty, and the fact that I have renounced my filpino citizenship should be ignored. it’s like charity, if one is sincere, then there’s no point of announcing one’s deed, unless one wants to personally profit from it.” kulit said..

    kulit, it was you who suggested that we have nothing to do with the country anymore and I gave you one reason that by sending remitance home is one way I help the country indirectly by helping my relatives and it doesn’t make me high and mighty and so does the other 8 to 10 millions other Filipinos sending remittances home. I don’t expect anything from my country, not even from my adopted country, so to suggest that the Philippines owes me something is just your own idea to bolster your argument. And again I never renounced my Filipino citizenship, as I also mentioned that Canada respects multiple citizenships. now don’t try to mix up everything…and intolerance of others because it irritates others, then what can you suggest about PGMA when she too not only irritates a lot but drives many to the mountains and thousands out of the country?

  15. kulit

    vic,

    “And also even I may or may not re-apply for my citizenship back, I also believe that my regular remittances (my brother and his wife need an enormous sum just for maintenance medication regularly) have somehow help the country’s economy and some of those monies go to taxes too (evat and other taxes) and I don’t even get benefits from them.”

    what does the “benefits” there imply? if you want to get benefits, then the option is to become a filipino citizen again. and what about the potshot of dodong regarding his contribution to the philippine economy. i have a niece and a nephew who study in England and sister and my brother-law send them money regularly — does that imply that uk owes them politically because the money goes to the british economy?

    you have to differentiate, the 8 to 10 million filipinos are mostly overseas contract workers (domestic helpers, seamen, construction workers, some professionals), not permanent immigrants like you who took another nationality. these people if they want to demand from the government, have every right to do so and are not out of line. now who’s mixing things up?

    and i didn’t say that you don’t have anything to do with the country again. again you’re taking it personally, as i said it’s not you, it’s the attitude…

    hoho, about gma — now, that’s another topic altogether, and believe me, we are on the same side there, as one of the reasons why pinoys are flocking to embassies — but now, that’s another context altogether

    hey appreciate it man, we really do, that you are still concerned with the philippines, as a nation, as a country and not just because of your relatives. i just want to point out what needs to be pointed out when a certain line got crossed.

  16. kulit

    and vic,

    pardon man if you got offended with some of my earlier remarks. i got offended too that i couldn’t help but react. as ronin pointed out, we are guests here of manolo quezon, and no need for “personalan”. besides if you knew me personally, you’d find me the most liberal bloke on this side of the planet.

    i rest my case.

  17. vic

    kulit, no harm done man. that’s the beauty of this type of forum, we can air our differences and in the end we all can sort them all out. It is but natural that sometimes each of us will go overboard, as we noticed that not only a few times that every single one of us here locked horns with one another. We can only thanks our host, MLQ 3 for all his patience and tolerance for all our indulgence. I too rest my case and have a nice weekend to all as I have a very good reason to celebrate mine…

  18. grd

    kudos to kulit and vic. my hat’s off to you both for showing humility here. i’m always humbled w/ such exemplary act. i too would like to apologize to vic/naykika for the heated exchange. believe me, it’s nothing personal (i’ve let the matter rest earlier). and as kulit wrote, we’re on the same side when talking of one person.

    my apologies to cvj as well for my “enthusiasm”.

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