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Apr 17

On Civil Disobedience

My column for today was inspired by Mahar Mangahas’ column, The important right of civil disobedience, which had these interesting findings, based on the 2004 Survey on Citizenship of the International Social Survey Program, which makes possible a comparison of Filipino attitudes and behavior to that of other peoples, particularly in our part of the world. As Mangahas digests it,

In a recent talk on “Surveying the Social Volcano” for CEOs and other opinion leaders at the Inquirer, I presented cross-country data showing Filipinos with: (a) a high score in seeing widespread corruption in the public service; (b) a very low score in seeing elections as honest; (c) a very low score in having personally joined a public demonstration; and (d) a very high score in putting importance to the right of civil disobedience…

…The outstanding finding from this survey of democratic rights is that, whereas we Filipinos, compared to other peoples of the world, care slightly less about a minimum living standard, the rights of minorities, the right to equal treatment, the right to be heard, and the right to participate, at the same time we care much, much more than others do about the right of civil disobedience.

Only four countries have higher scores than the Philippines on the importance of civil disobedience, all from the Eastern bloc: Bulgaria (79), Poland (72), Slovakia (71) and Latvia (65). Russia’s score is 57. Germany’s high score of 52 may be due, said a German visitor, to the national memory of having acquiesced to immoral government policies in Nazi times.

Will the social volcano erupt? In my Inquirer seminar, I said that the eruptions of 1986 and 2001 proved that “the social volcano” can be awakened. During “Juetenggate,” President Erap was (slightly) popular, while then-Vice President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was unpopular for having deserted him. Public opinion on Erap was still divided during the impeachment trial. EDSA People Power II was triggered by the unscripted refusal to open the “second envelope, which nine out of 10 Metro Manilans saw on live TV. The “Hello Garci” crisis is worse. For three years, President Arroyo has been very unpopular, while her VP has been (relatively) popular.

The ISSP citizenship-survey data suggest that a social explosion would be driven less by the Filipinos’ inclination towards rallies than by their insistence on the right of civil disobedience. The timing of such an explosion, like that of any volcano, is unpredictable.

Therefore, plan for the Black Swan moment! Wuzzat? Read Fear of a Black Swan: Risk guru Nassim Taleb talks about why Wall Street fails to anticipate disaster, which will spare you having to buy the book (but you should, anyway).

Relevant readings are Basic Concepts of Satyagraha: Gandhian Nonviolence and What is Satyagraha? both of which I quoted in my column.

Also, extracts from Letter from a Birmingham Jail, in which Martin Luther King laid out non-violent resistance:

In any nonviolent campaign there are four basic steps: 1) Collection of the facts to determine whether injustices are alive. 2) Negotiation. 3) Self-purification and 4) Direct action.

Concerning the last, he wrote,

You may well ask: “Why direct action? Why sit-ins, marches, etc.? Isn’t negotiation a better path?” You are exactly right in your call for negotiation. Indeed, this is the purpose of direct action. Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and establish such creative tension that a community that has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks so to dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored. I just referred to the creation of tension as a part of the work of the nonviolent resister. This may sound rather shocking. But I must confess that I am not afraid of the word tension. I have earnestly worked and preached against violent tension, but there is a type of constructive nonviolent tension that is necessary for growth. Just as Socrates felt that it was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage of myths and half-truths to the unfettered realm of creative analysis and objective appraisal, we must see the need of having nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men to rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to the majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood. So the purpose of the direct action is to create a situation so crisis-packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation. We, therefore, concur with you in your call for negotiation. Too long has our beloved Southland been bogged down in the tragic attempt to live in monologue rather than dialogue.

He then discusses, at -beautiful- length, the question of the law, the dilemma at the heart of civil disobedience:

One may well ask: “How can you advocate breaking some laws and obeying others?” The answer is found in the fact that there are two types of laws: There are just and there are unjust laws. I would agree with Saint Augustine that “An unjust law is no law at all.”

Now, what is the difference between the two? How does one determine when a law is just or unjust? A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of Saint Thomas Aquinas, an unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal and natural law. Any law that uplifts human personality is just. Any law that degrades human personality is unjust. All segregation statutes are unjust because segregation distorts the soul and damages the personality. It gives the segregator a false sense of superiority, and the segregated a false sense of inferiority. To use the words of Martin Buber, the Jewish philosopher, segregation substitutes and “I-it” relationship for an “I-thou” relationship, and ends up relegating persons to the status of things. So segregation is not only politically, economically and sociologically unsound, but it is morally wrong and sinful. Paul Tillich has said that sin is separation. Isn’t segregation an existential expression of man’s tragic separation, an expression of his awful estrangement, his terrible sinfulness? So I can urge men to disobey segregation ordinances because they are morally wrong.

Let us turn to a more concrete example of just and unjust laws. An unjust law is a code that a majority inflicts on a minority that is not binding on itself. This is difference made legal. On the other hand a just law is a code that a majority compels a minority to follow that it is willing to follow itself. This is sameness made legal.

Let me give another explanation. An unjust law is a code inflicted upon a minority which that minority had no part in enacting or creating because they did not have the unhampered right to vote. Who can say that the legislature of Alabama which set up the segregation laws was democratically elected? Throughout the state of Alabama all types of conniving methods are used to prevent Negroes from becoming registered voters and there are some counties without a single Negro registered to vote despite the fact that the Negro constitutes a majority of the population. Can any law set up in such a state be considered democratically structured?

And he then says,

…There are some instances when a law is just on its face and unjust in its application. For instance, I was arrested Friday on a charge of parading without a permit. Now there is nothing wrong with an ordinance which requires a permit for a parade, but when the ordinance is used to preserve segregation and to deny citizens the First-Amendment privilege of peaceful assembly and peaceful protest, then it becomes unjust.

I hope you can see the distinction I am trying to point out. In no sense do I advocate evading or defying the law as the rabid segregationist would do. This would lead to anarchy. One who breaks an unjust law must do it openly, lovingly… and with a willingness to accept the penalty. I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and willingly accepts the penalty by staying in jail to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the very highest respect for law.

Of course, there is nothing new about this kind of civil disobedience. It was seen sublimely in the refusal of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego to obey the laws of Nebuchadnezzar because a higher moral law was involved. It was practiced superbly by the early Christians who were willing to face hungry lions and the excruciating pain of chopping blocks, before submitting to certain unjust laws of the Roman empire. To a degree academic freedom is a reality today because Socrates practiced civil disobedience.

As did Rizal. And he then says, of those praising the police for their non-violent handling of protesters,

It is true that they have been rather disciplined in their public handling of the demonstrators. In this sense they have been rather publicly “nonviolent”. But for what purpose? To preserve the evil system of segregation. Over the last few years I have consistently preached that nonviolence demands that the means we use must be as pure as the ends we seek. So I have tried to make it clear that it is wrong to use immoral means to attain moral ends. But now I must affirm that it is just as wrong, or even more so, to use moral means to preserve immoral ends. Maybe Mr. Connor and his policemen have been rather publicly nonviolent, as Chief Pritchett was in Albany, Georgia, but they have used the moral means of nonviolence to maintain the immoral end of flagrant racial injustice. T. S. Eliot has said that there is no greater treason than to do the right deed for the wrong reason.

Then what? The problem, it seems to me, is that we have yet to fully comprehend non-violent resistance, because civil disobedience for us consists in thumbing our noses at officials but not pursuing collective action. We will gladly puncture the pretenses of the powerful but in as risk-free a manner as possible; sustained confrontation, on the other hand, we leave to others to pursue.

Including, ironically, institutions.

I didn’t encounter it at the time, but Rep. Teodoro L. Locsin’s advice to the Supreme Court last year, which you can read in Just Do It, is interesting, taking the era of Martin Luther King into account:

IMAGINE a situation where killings and disappearances are taking place. The victims form a distinct and disliked, though by no means unpopular political grouping. In fact, they have the most populist agenda of any other. The victims are not prominent members of their persuasion. They are not even zealous militants or even militants at all. They are mere rank and file; social workers in short. The crimes show a pattern pointing to security agents as the perpetrators. More than a pattern, it is the conclusion of a presidential commission. The authorities are reluctant to investigate the murders and disappearances. More, the authorities are openly dismissive of the problem. Gratuitously, yet with a knowing air, they deny the crimes are taking place. Yet, contradictorily, they blame the crimes they deny are taking place at all on the victims themselves, adding that in a sense the victims have only themselves to blame for adhering to a cause detested by the military. “They are begging for it” is heard from their lips. And yet the Constitution that covers both victims and suspects protects freedom of belief without any distinction; the last distinction having been erased by the repeal of the antisubversion law.

Alabama in the 1960s? No. US President Johnson sent in US marshals to protect the victims and enforce their rights. The hypothetical situation might well be the Philippines today under a government that, out of complicity with or fear of the perpetrators, will do nothing, leaving only a newly elected Congress, already too absorbed in its forthcoming perks to pay back the cost of its recent election, to take any serious notice let alone action. Leaving a Court anxious not to say alarmed but constrained by the passive role to which judicial tradition and the constitutional text confine it.

And he then delves into the problem that arises when the law is in the hands of those unwilling to enforce them:

If we supposedly live under a rule of law but the principal laws are not systematically left unenforced in key cases by those principally charged to enforce them, why have the Supreme Court at all? The Nazi courts are said to have had a near fine record in purely commercial cases, unmarred even by anti-Semitism since all the Jews had already been relocated. These Nazi precedents may still be standing and, if not openly cited, nonetheless consulted for their illumination on commercial and civil laws. Precedents from Japanese Imperial courts are deeply respected. Yet neither society, more vibrant and coherent even than the democratic ones that succeeded them, is yet deemed to have had a genuine rule of law or judicial system.

Strictly speaking, this is not a problem for the passive receptacles of cases, as the Court modestly describes the judicial function – when and if, that is, the executive brings them before the courts. But the problem is precisely an executive that sits on its hands and thereby stains them with these crimes. As a result, by the Court’s own initiative, the weakest and least dangerous branch of government must pit itself against the most powerful and lethal; the circumspect power of deliberation against the brazen power of the sword, with the petty power of the purse counting pennies on the side.

To be brutally honest, Congress can have no fruitful role to play in this dilemma, if it were expected simply to craft more new legislation to curb violations of constitutional rights. From where I sit, thickening the thicket of legislation may confer a passing comfort for the small shade that the shrubs may give, but it will not result in the smallest progress in addressing the utter disregard of such legal safeguards as the Constitution and past congresses have already put in place.

The solution, Locsin proposed, was judicial activism:

What seems to be doable is for the judiciary to be quicker and more aggressive in addressing human rights cases even under existing rules where legal standing and actual controversy exist. Give the executive no leeway to tell the families of the victims, “So sue us and see how far that gets you.” A recent Court of Appeals decision shows how far. Or rule quickly and with finality – as the Court just did after almost a year – on the validity of the arrest and detention of Leftist lawmakers; and use the occasion of its ruling to express in the strongest terms the Court’s uneasiness if not alarm over the human rights situation in the country. There is a limit to circumspection and the Court can, in practical terms, really, do no wrong.

In short, strike down offensive executive actions as fast as they are correctly protested – I emphasize the qualifier “correctly”‚ – and the executive will get the message and the citizenry, feeling reassured that effective recourse lies somewhere, will be further emboldened to do what is firstly their responsibility and not the Court’s: stand up for their rights. That will answer the criticism from the groups representing the victims that to protest is to step forward and hang around with a bulls-eye painted on one’s chest.

Besides, if the Court became aggressive, on whom would discredit fall if the Court’s orders are ignored – the Court which makes no pretense of power or the executive which willfully neglects to use its power as the Constitution mandates?…

…In this regard, I invite the Court’s attention to the literature on the judicial activism of the Israeli Supreme Court which has established constitutional norms where none existed – such as freedom of expression, press, association and public assembly, as well as equality regardless of Palestinian race and religion; going to the extent, according to a paper by Ariel Bendor, of enforcing good government. Even in cases of national security, the Israel Court has proscribed coercion and torture and the detention of a Muslim community in negotiating the release of Israeli hostages. “The policy of the [Israeli] Supreme Court in the sphere of [legal] standing and justiciability [is] based on giving preference to the rule of law;” i.e., the need to protect and preserve the rule of law itself “as opposed to the institutional interest of the court” to steer clear of political issues that invite retaliation from the political branches of government. “This is because without judicial imposition of the law,” says Bendor, “the law would not be upheld” at all.

Which explains why the Supreme Court being under fire, at present, is pregnant with meaning.

Blog entries I quoted in my column were: The Marocharim Experiment and Brown SEO. See Secondthoughts also.

147 comments

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  1. vic

    UnivPhilippines-Diliman — even Ateneo de Naga and Ateneo de Manila — provide a simpler venue for those who want to help. Contribute to scholarship funds.

    UPn, Philantrophy in an individual basis or by an organization is always appreciated, but these and others as we know, usually are very useful in a very limited targeted subjects and more often than not would not change fundamentally the whole landscape..

    In the Articles I posted above the author, a veteran journalist whose writings been reading for years give some very interesting scope on the subject. In it she believes, and most agree with her belief that Taxes, collected fairly and spent wisely is the best way for a society to Collectively Progress and she also justified her belief… UnivPhilippines-Diliman — even Ateneo de Naga and Ateneo de Manila — provide a simpler venue for those who want to help. Contribute to scholarship funds.

    UPn, Philantrophy in an individual basis or by an organization is always appreciated, but these and others as we know, usually are very useful in a very limited targeted subjects and more often than not would not change fundamentally the whole landscape..

    In the Articles I posted above the author, a veteran journalist whose writings been reading for years give some very interesting scope on the subject. In it she believes, and most agree with her belief that Taxes, collected fairly and spent wisely is the best way for a society to Collectively Progress and she also justified her belief…

  2. vic

    double booboo up there sorry again….

  3. Mandaragat

    “Civil Disobedience.”

    For what? For whom? To us OFW, it’s just a waste of time, albeit unnecessary.

    Let’s just focus on nation building instead.

  4. cvj

    Mandaragat, as a fellow OFW, i beg to disagree.

  5. UP n student

    Vic: There is a debate with regards taxation and tax-deductions in regards charitable giving. The conservatives want to have a say in wheir their contributions go to (and for them to receive tax deductions for their contributions to charities of their choosing); the liberals want to raise taxes and for the moneys to be directed only to specific programs that they “approve”.

    A study was recently released — the study shows that it is the liberals who are super-stingy in the amount that they give to charitable organizations. [Al Gore is example — less than 2-1/2% of gross income went to charitable giving — in contrast to “tithe 10%” which is the nominal goal for most religious conservatives.]

    The liberals, though, are furiously motivated to raise taxes (which, (though history has proven it otherwise) they then say, can be better managed and directed by —the liberals in politics, who else????– to distribute the moneys collected.]

    Don’t you know any organizations or people who holler the message of “You who have so much… how come you don’t give enough? Do you not feel the guilt in your souls???” while disregarding that the religious conservatives are actually much more generous in their giving. Their message quickly turns to “Give us your money, and then we will spend it based on our priorities!!!” Some will even continue to say “And please do not expect any ‘thank you’s’; we are doing you a favor as we relieve you of your money.” And NO!!, no money for condoms for the poor or even sexuality-classes in high schools — that is your program, not ours.

  6. hawaiianguy

    bert,

    insecure ka ba, o’ defensive? sayang naman, nagagalingan pa naman ako sa’yo.

    Hindi. Ang tawag sa taong ganyan ay rabid GMA defender. Tama ka, magaling nga sana, kaya lang sa ibang bagay ginagamit ang galing. Sayang. 🙁

    Sabi nga ni Dolphy, “hindi naman kailangan ng pinas ng isang Ph.D. na presidente.” Kaya ayun, nagkaroon ng Ph.D. na presidente ang pinas. Ubod talaga ng galing! 🙂

  7. juggernaut

    mandaragat,
    What have you done really in the name of nation building? You and your kind disgust me really! You don’t even know what you’re talking about. Can you honestly say you are aware of the real issues plaguing the country? I bet you, Bencard, Rego, and the rest of your snug, comfortably, relaxed, couch potato variants don’t even know one government official here, much less have actually talked to one.
    Others can honestly say that they spend lunches, dinners, right across the tables from these officials.
    Nation building my ass! If you can quantify your idiotic statement and come up with a number way above 1BPhp per annum, I will respect that, below that – you’re a waste of time, another wannabe. We are tired of too many pretenders already!
    Disgusting, really! Spare us your cheap words! Tell that to the rioting african americans, go to the ghettos!
    All the Obama’s and Clintons don’t hold a candle even to the worst of us. Spineless sissies just like you and your kind!

  8. juggernaut

    When you give, you give! don’t expect any thank yous! UP n student, you should try it some time! You’re such a cheap, sanctimonious, idiotic wannabe – try sharing your wealth for a change. That is, if you have any…you can’t give that which you don’t have…
    So you’re another pretender! Pretending to be human! You selfish, self-centered, narcissistic, overweight, geek! Stop hiding!!!Live!!!

  9. juggernaut

    I wondered where Bencard got his “anarchy” ideas. Oh, I forgot, he’s run away to a place where the concept started – THE GOOD ‘OL US OF A!!!
    Check this link, they actually promote it “as is!”
    You guys who “ran away” from it all are now pretending to have balls – but we know better don’t we? Please take your amiga Neri here with you next time!

    http://www.counterpunch.org/stanton07232003.html

  10. juggernaut

    Old dogs who can’t learn new tricks are to be put down!

  11. benign0

    “Civil disobedience” in the Philippines is an oxymoronic concept considering that:

    (1) Pinoys have an underdeveloped sense of civic duty; and,

    (2) Pinoys disobeying laws is more a rule than an exception AS IT IS.

    I wrote way back that Pinoys have a CULTURE OF CRIME here:

    http://www.getrealphilippines.com/agr-disagr/16-3-cultcrime.html

    So why all this talk about “civil disobedience” when said disobedience is already institutionalised and INGRAINED into the very fabric of Pinoy society.

    Examples of unlawful behaviour that Pinoys take for granted as “normal” and even part of our culture:

    – squatting (trespassing on private and public property)
    – urinating in public (vagrancy and vandalism)
    – throwing rubbish and sewage into esteros (illegal dumping)
    – reckless driving, speeding, and illegal counterflowing
    – use of sirens and flashers by private vehicles (impersonating police officers and government agents)
    – cockfighting (cruelty to animals)
    – cutting into queues and other forms of lusot (common courtesy)
    – raising livestock in residential areas (environmental/health hazard)
    – igniting life/limb/property-threatening explosives on New Year’s eve.
    – mixing concrete on public streets (damage to public property and safety hazard)
    – illegal buying and selling of copyrighted material (intellectual property theft)
    – keeping servants on call 24/7 and not contributing to social security on their behalf

    The list can go on forever.

    “Civil disobedience” nga ba?

    All we have to do is to continue doing what we ALREADY ARE doing. We already have a constant state of civil disobedience right under our brown noses.

    – 😀

  12. Bencard

    i see this goon, formerly in military uniform, is back under a different handle. must have been banned at tordesilias. really brave-talking, calling everybody who doesn’t subscribe to his weird commentaries, “coward”. he claims to be a boxer and sharp-shooter. watch out, manolo. i detect some violent personality right here in your blog.

  13. benign0

    really brave-talking, calling everybody who doesn’t subscribe to his weird commentaries, “coward”. he claims to be a boxer and sharp-shooter. watch out, manolo. i detect some violent personality right here in your blog.

    Typical PINOY behaviour lang yan.

    Welcome to the islands.

    – 😀

  14. Mandaragat

    Juggernaut,

    “What have you done really in the name of nation building? You and your kind disgust me really! You don’t even know what you’re talking about. Can you honestly say you are aware of the real issues plaguing the country? I bet you, Bencard, Rego, and the rest of your snug, comfortably, relaxed, couch potato variants don’t even know one government official here, much less have actually talked to one.
    Others can honestly say that they spend lunches, dinners, right across the tables from these officials.
    Nation building my ass! If you can quantify your idiotic statement and come up with a number way above 1BPhp per annum, I will respect that, below that – you’re a waste of time, another wannabe. We are tired of too many pretenders already!
    Disgusting, really! Spare us your cheap words! Tell that to the rioting african americans, go to the ghettos!
    All the Obama’s and Clintons don’t hold a candle even to the worst of us. Spineless sissies just like you and your kind!”

    What do you expect me to do, come to the rally and pray? Well juggernaut NOT AGAIN! NOT ANYMORE!
    If you have a case, bring it to the court.

    The traditional elite and the “moral crusaders” doesn’t have the monopoly anymore to say who’s in and who is out.

    Just would like to remind everyone.

  15. benign0

    Ayan na.

    EllenTordesillas.com-style of discussion is underway.

    Pinoy nga naman talaga. 😀

  16. cvj

    Mandaragat, i see that you have been going around positioning yourself as some sort of spokesman for OFW’s. I am an OFW like you and i would like to remind you that you do not speak for me.

  17. Mandaragat

    I have stalker now…..ohh I’m scared!!!

  18. Bencard

    cvj, not that i agree with you that mandaragat is acting as “spokesman” for OFW’s, but how does that differ with your habitual penchant for presuming to speak for all the PEOPLE of the philippines, huh?

  19. Pedestrian Observer GB

    Bening, you are a coward…… nothing more nothing less. Go ahead and delude yourself that you hold the key or the “solution” to societies ills, let me just remind you that the minority ruling elites still calls the shot. Your ignorance is showing and pulling data off your ass is just not cutting it, why not follow what Kabayan is saying….. live and learn with the poor…. but don’t make the mistake of insulting them. On the other hand as dumb as you are you probably will stick to your old habits so go ahead……… you are not a coward right?

    It is not about “solutioneering” but how we as Filipinos respond to the problems besseting the nation that should be addressed…. or is it more convenient to insult the people because cowards have nothing to offer but their longing for attention and delusional feeling of superiority……. typical mentality of someone who can’t seem to adjust to his Australian environment thus he pours all his frustration to his people back home.

  20. Bencard

    i just notice a seeming fondness of the word “coward” in some of the commenters here. it is as if, by calling someone else a coward, the caller becomes “brave” whether or not he/she is. piteous!

  21. justice league

    Benigno,

    -squatting- Kensington Welfare Rights Union, Mad Housers, Homes Not Jails.

    -urinating in public- The MMDA has put up scores of pink urinals to hopefully address the issue.
    -Vandalism- Michael Fay (the American government even went to great lengths for clemency but to no avail)

    -reckless driving, speeding, etc…- Michael Fay again as well as all those unnamed characters in those American “home videos”.

    -igniting life/limb/property-threatening explosives on the fourth of July.

    -illegal buying and selling of copyrighted material (intellectual property theft)-Granting that it is but those materials don’t come over here by themselves.

    -large scale throwing of rubbish and sewage into lakes and rivers like what Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District and six area communities did to lake Michigan.

    -Not that I approve of the whole idea but given that cockfighting is regulated by the Games and Amusement Board, why do you consider cockfighting as unlawful?

    -Not that I approve of cutting into queues, but can you expound on the unlawfulness of that here?

    -Admitting that I don’t know the status of the “Kasambahay bill” in Congress and whether you’re actually right or not; I’m quite interested in how you’ll elucidate on the unlawfulness of the non contribution to social security on the behalf of servants.

  22. justice league

    Benigno,

    BTW, I scanned your other article.

    From there I think its safe to determine to which kind of people you are alluding to with that “beholdenness to personalities” comment.

  23. Diego

    @ Bencard

    “and no one can take our birthright away from us.” -Bencard

    During the time of Marcos, your kind were called steak commandos.

    Want to have your cake and eat it too. huh?

  24. Diego

    @ Bencard

    “we see the picture better from a distance and call it as we see it.” – Bencard

    And sarap makisawsaw sa problema ng Pilipinas from the comfort of the U.S. ano?

    You are a pathetic old man.

  25. Diego

    @ Benign0

    Ikaw ang kawawa, nasa Australia ka na, nakikialam ka pa dito.

    Kulang ka ba sa pansin diyan? Kawawang Benign0. Kulang sa pansin sa Australia, nakiki-alam na uli sa Pilipinas.

    Simple talaga. Para kang yung sinasabing mong aso.

  26. Diego

    ‘Ayan na. EllenTordesillas.com-style of discussion is underway. Pinoy nga naman talaga.’ – Benign0

    Why don’t you blog with your Aussie friends, if you don’t like the comments?

    Kawawang Benign0, hindi alam ang gusto. Parang yung sinasabing niyang aso.

  27. Bencard

    it’s easy to tell when the ellentordesillias blog denizens are hanging out here. the quality of discussions deteriorates to it’s lowest level. i bet these are the same pathetic souls giving that blog 1000 or so hits by posting nonsense again and again and again like the ever ready battery bunny that keeps going and going and going… just see the preceding four above.

  28. benign0

    Your ignorance is showing and pulling data off your ass is just not cutting it, why not follow what Kabayan is saying….. live and learn with the poor…. but don’t make the mistake of insulting them. – Pedestrian

    Live and learn with the poor?

    What is there to “learn” from the poor? How to be poor? 😀

    The fact remains that they are POOR. Which means somewhere in their lives or among their ancestors, something did not go right.

    I’d rather learn from the rich. You learn how to get rich by observing and learning from the rich.

    It’s simple, really. 😀

  29. cvj

    The Jesuits really have a lot to answer for.

  30. benign0

    The Jesuits really have a lot to answer for. – cvj

    In what way, dude.

    Do elaborate please.

    – 😀

  31. cvj

    Benign0, no need. You’ve been elaborating for me already, for the past 8 years in fact.

  32. benign0

    Benign0, no need. You’ve been elaborating for me already, for the past 8 years in fact. – cvj

    Of course I have, dude.

    Of course I have.

    – 😀

  33. Bert

    Now, now, just a thought, and no politics here.

    Between an ellentordesillas type commenter and a Lulli Brigadier type posting here in Manolo’s blog, I wonder who’s the more lovable (or hateful).

  34. Bert

    or, to rephrase the question:

    Which is more offensive, to be called an ellentordesillas commenter, or a Lulli Brigadier?

  35. Bencard

    hey bert, is there really a lulli brigade blog? can you tell me how i can access it and maybe make a comment or two? i know ellen t has one but is lulli’s just a figment of your and your kind’s imagination – just another form of heckling?

  36. Diego

    The trouble with you Bencard is that when you attack the views of some commenters, you say birthright and all that B.S.

    If somebody questions your views, you cry foul and say no ellentordessilas.com comment allowed.

    And if gets really hot, you turn to Manolo for help.

  37. Bencard

    diego, you said something that make sense. yes, i, bencard, attack VIEWS, not people (unless, of course, first attacked).

  38. Pedestrian Observer GB

    Bening, I am not taking that away from you but as always you need to have a balance so you can have a better understanding of the present realities in the Philippines…….. this will help you understand why your insults and taunting of the poor is cruel and uncalled for.

    As for the cowardice contrary to what some are saying, no it does not make one feel “brave” but the point being is that it is a cowardly act when one pins the blame on the exploited people instead of the exploiter………. simple yet so complicated when one is in denial and too afraid to see reality for what it is. It makes it even worse and dumb if one cites fallacies and myths without basis that is borne out of ignorance and treating said generalization as if it was the universal truth.

  39. Bencard

    pedestrian, then your word usage (of “coward” or “cowardly act”) is defective and erroneous. cowardice, as commonly used, evokes the opposite of bravery and/or courage, not the expression of one’s belief, no matter how unacceptable it is to others. being a “coward” is the state of being unreasonably afraid of potential harm, either physically or morally. an opinion contrary to yours is not necessarily cowardly. (btw, it seems your misuse of the word coward, among others, is common among bloggers at ellentordesillias.com, lol).

  40. Pedestrian Observer GB

    Then you missed the point by a mile bencard……. too afraid to see reality and kicking the exploited instead of the exploiter especially in the Philippine context holds true. This has nothing to do with one’s “belief” its a matter of seeing reality for what it is and not one based on myths and fallacies as espoused by Bening in pulling data out of his ass and treat it as the universal truth.

  41. Bencard

    pedestrian, isn’t your statement that benignO is “too afraid to see reality” an opinionated blurb? who are you to say that he is not “seeing reality for what it is”. and what has that got to do with being a “coward” according to the accepted meaning of the word?

  42. Pedestrian Observer GB

    It goes something like this….. a woman was raped and Bening insults the victim instead of the rapist because he is too afraid to confront the powerful criminal…. there hope you get it this time around bencard….

  43. Bencard

    did he tell you he was afraid, or was that your own ‘haka-haka’? suppose he chose not to confront the perp because he was not feeling well and instead called the police on his cell phone? was he a coward? did he have to die to avoid being called a “coward”?

  44. Pedestrian Observer GB

    you are being a …. ah never mind… you seem to concoct things based on imaginary things and not on the actuations and insults heaped on the poor by Bening thus you fail to see the parallelism….. fine be that way and stay that way…..can’t help you anymore bencard, lol.

  45. leytenian

    Bencard :
    “did he tell you he was afraid, or was that your own ‘haka-haka’? suppose he chose not to confront the perp because he was not feeling well and instead called the police on his cell phone? was he a coward? did he have to die to avoid being called a “coward”?”

    applying this example to our current administration who would be the police? i bet the rapist can just pay him as soon as benigno hang up his cell. LOL.
    so who is the rapist and who is the victim?
    simple: the rapist is our corrupt leaders and the victims are the people.

    Bencard, Sounds like you are a lawyer. With all due rspect, I have a question for you?
    How can we change our Policy and Procedure in terms of Financial Transparency and Accountability? What provisions and revisions to our Constitutional Code must be implemented. If implemented, what time frame we will see results? Who among our current politicians is capable of implementing such change?

    Anyone can really provide answers. Good day

  46. THECOLDKING

    Just in case I am the one being referred to, I have not been banned anywhere, I have never claimed to be an expert in boxing and/or shooting, and you are confusing me with some other poster(s). I do agree though that Bencard and Benigno and the Cat and all others like them, are really cowardly indeed, all they do is deny and dissemble everything and anything to death (most especially whenever it involves the depravity and debauchery of the current GMA administration), when what this country really needs, indeed all what it has ever needed, is REVOLUTION, but they are too afraid of this ever happening most likely because they know that they, and the rest of their oligarchic class, will ultimately have their backs against the wall when the revolution comes.

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