Let’s all bitch

After all, even FVR, apparently, has begun to bitch:

Newsflash: FVR demands apology from Presd’l Spokesman Ignacio Bunye for slur on retired soldiers. Gag order also wrong as FVR urges GMA to work for national unity as he expresses regret at the slow pace of moves to amend Charter. Break imminent as FVR leaves for Germany.

That’s a text supposedly from former president Ramos’s press people.

The little prince of journalistic scuttlebutt, Newsboy, has been proclaiming his affections for the President for some time, because, he says, she is a bitch. His word, not mine, but I know where he’s coming from. That’s one reason I still have fond memories of working for the President. I liked her as a bitchy President. I wish she’d remained a bitchy President. Every time she was bitchy, I applauded it, and many of my disagreements with those I worked with at the Palace was over the question of whether bitchiness is a quality that is helpful, or destructive, as far as a female President is concerned.

My major disappointment with the President was -and remains- she could neither remain a consistent, no-nonsense, workaholic bitch, nor completely transform herself into a caring, cuddling, and empathetic chief executive. She tried to please everyone, and that is a cardinal sin in politics. You can’t please everyone, but you should recognize two things: your core constituency, who provide support come hell or high water, and the broader national constituency, that is, the public, that has some pretty ingrained notions of what national leadership should be about. What are those ingrained notions, as far as Presidents are concerned?

One commenter, “.F.” recently said,

It has come to a point where I dont care how Gloria got there, or how the military became a fat, weak worm, or why senators and congressmen love the powers of congressional investigations. What really bothers me is their same absorption with political power plays, to the detriment of their job performance. Oh impeach them all, fire them all! This country needs a paternalistic dictator to crack the whip, just like the sultans and datus of old, but we are too stuck with American-fed gospel of democracy to admit it–even if it goes against our instincts and our culture. And because of this lingering colonial mindset, we havent produced a Lee Kuan Yew or a Mahathir to lead us out of the morass. What we produced are charlatans and weaklings in the officialdom, quarelling their way to power till kingdom come.

I pointed out in the past, that the Americans say, our conception of democracy is plebiscitary, and I have written about plebiscitary democracy more recently, too: an election is a plebiscite, and plebiscites are, to my mind, our view of the democratic way of settling issues. What issues could these be? Who do we want to do the leading? Then we choose someone, by an election, which is as much about choosing the new, as it is a plebiscite on the old. And once we choose a leader, we expect them to lead. If we don’t like it, then we vote them out. Or, if a leader is unsure if the public still supports the current leadership, then hold an election that serves as a plebiscite on the leader, and that could be any election, say for a mayor or governor, so long as the leader makes it clear that the results of that election is as much a plebiscite on the leader, as it is about the specific purpose of the election. Rep. Teddyboy Locsin said the plenary vote at the House was supposed to work as a vote of confidence in the President, after the Committee on Justice put together the strongest possible case. It didn’t put together a case at all, which made the plenary vote a farce. Had the articles of impeachment proceeded to the Senate, you would then have eventually had another vote of confidence in the President, but this of course, never took place. The President has won procedurally, but lost in the battle for public opinion, or at best, has managed a stalemate. She has not harnessed the plebiscitary powers of the presidency, because she is incapable of appreciating this aspect of it. Sort of like a mechanic good at keeping an engine going but not realizing the engine isn’t a tractor engine, but the motor for a Ferrari.

We have sometimes conscious, sometime subconscious expectations of our presidents. Whenever the President paid a surprise visit to a government office, made the feathers fly, and scolded someone in public, she was harking back to a long-standing and successful tradition of political leadership. It is a time-honored principle of management in this country that you can only get results, not by being buddy-buddy with your staff, but putting the fear of God (or yourself) in them. The problem comes when you are strong and ruthless one day, and weak, vacillating, and suddenly pining to be warm and cuddly the next. You either come across as schizophrenic or insincere. The model for the President is one familiar to all of us: the “terror” teacher. She should have stayed that. It was what gave her crucial support, and made people believe in her. I don’t think anyone personally likes the President, but among her supporters they feared her, and admired her intelligence, organizational ability, and efficiency. Things began to fall apart when she failed to hold on steadily to any particular persona, which eventually leads to the conclusion that every persona is expendable, and if that’s the case, there’s really nothing one can hitch their own star to. The “I’m sorry” speech was the last straw, because it was so utterly out of character, proving, in a sense, she has no character at all. Her fiery speeches thereafter, and again the ones she’s making recently, would have served her in good stead, if she’d kept making them all along. If that is truly her, it is the GMA people can follow; but by now, how sure we are it’s her?

Another reader, “Alex,” also recently said,

From my observation, the opposition groups and the Senate, fueled by the media, have waged brinkmanship much earlier than Malacanang and certainly far more blatantly and irresponsibly. They have openly incited the people to revolt against the administration through numerous and mostly ill-attended street protests that cause more headaches to the citizenry and to businesses than to Arroyo. They have surreptitiously courted the military to join in overthrowing the administration. They encourage anarchy by not respecting our Constitutional processes and our democratic system if they don’t jive with their interests.

I admire the citizenry for the patience and clarity they’ve shown throughout this political turmoil. I think the people are starting to get it, what it takes to achieve democracy. It’s not faith but a belief. A belief in a government of laws not of men. We may not get the perfect men and women to serve all the time, but as long as we stick to our democratic system and uphold our laws and not just break them and change them whenever they don’t suit the opposition we’ll be on our way to a better and more stable government.

(My favorite Communist blogger, can’t understand this mentality and indeed, she finds it offensive; another radical blogger is also not pleased with this thinking but thinks two fronts, are better than one: he also hints at a potentially very interesting entry -how to conduct a Palace siege- whcih I’m dying to read because I have ideas of my own, too, purely as an intellectual exercise, of course). Anyway, the comment brings up some interesting questions. To a certain extent, the comment reminds me of things I say to people: after the big march to push for impeachment, once the battle had been lost, the thing to do would have been to first, push for a reorganization of the House; second, decide on an interim strategy regarding charter change; third, begin preparations for the next impeachment. You lose, you lose. Reorganize and fight again another day. The big lesson here is that indeed, the public is process-oriented. Conducting post-mortems on why the impeachment battle was lost yesterday will ensure you win it tomorrow. Meanwhile, as you prepare for that, engage in a war of attrition. After all, what do the President’s enemies have to lose? At the very, very least, they will have their turn in 2010. And will inherit her problems as well as her gains. But you see, that’s the problem with many of those in the traditional opposition. They haven’t done their planning, thinking -what Bush, Sr. called “the vision thing.”

We need the “vision thing.” Badly. Even the President could never fully grasp the “Strong Republic” concept, which I liked (and continue to like). The presidents who succeed are those who have -and project- a vision for the nation. “Poised for take off” may be good if you have the mind of an air traffic controller. But not of a president.

Manuel L. Quezon III.

26 thoughts on “Let’s all bitch

  1. Interesting, Manolo. We really should bring back property and tax qualifications before allowing citizens to vote. One cannot vote responsibly if he doesn’t have a stake in the system. It would probably diminish much of the demagoguery in politics.

    I also don’t find plebiscitary democracy effective in a country where the vast majority are uneducated. Pandering to the masses has really what politics is all about in this country. That’s why we can’t get anything done.

  2. Carl, the problem with that, which is what I tell people who have similar responses, is that once you remove qualifications, you can’t put them back. And besides, this presumes the poor don’t pay taxes, which they do -indirect taxes on many of the goods they consume, and as for property, it’s even more of a difficult qualification to reintroduce.

    And show me a country where they don’t pander to the masses?

  3. I agree with everything you wrote. On the “plebiscitary” approach to politics, the problem is that this only half the story. An election is to allow the citizenry to pass a verdict on the job their representatives have done; the other part for elected officials to actually do the job. That’s the part that is missing here.

    Hedman and Sidel (2000) have talked of “the subordination of the bureaucracy … to an American-style multi-tiered hierarchy of elected politicians” in the Philippines and that is the nub of the issue. There is no strong independent bureaucracy in the Philippines to preserve the long-term non-partisan interests of the state (or of the province, city, etc at the subnational level). Instead, elected officials regard the public officials “under” them as servants to help them (i) reward the interest groups that supported them in the last election, (ii) enrich themselves (both for their personal consumption and to help them to win another bout at the trough at the next election), and (iii) to carry out superficial, cheap, but obvious vanity projects that will count as their “achievements” in three years’ time (and there is no better example of this than Atienza’s “vanity projects” in the city of Manila).

    The people I feel really sorry for are the dedicated civil servants, policemen and even army officers who try to do their best within this system. As for their reward for their public spiritedness, I think Mike Luz would be the best person to ask about that.

  4. “This country needs a paternalistic dictator to crack the whip, just like the sultans and datus of old…we havent produced a Lee Kuan Yew or a Mahathir to lead us out of the morass.”

    We already had a paternalistic dictator (Marcos). And so did (Suharto and Sukarno) our Datu and Sultan-ruled cultural brothers and sisters from the South-the Indonesians. Looked what happened to them.

    So Filipinos and Indonesian will try out democracy in the interim, given the datu style rule didn’t work.

    The problem with both our democracies is that there aren’t that many Chinese to begin with. Indo and Phils with 2 to 5 % chinese population each, will never be entrepreneurial. Malaysia had the “historical luxury” of having Indian and Chinese migrants, that is why their country progressed despite the autocracy-because a big proportion of the population will carry on with business inspite of the bad politics.

    If there’s anything to blame, it’s the lazy and one day millionaire Malay mentality that should be corrected by our leaders. Malaysia did it with its Bumiputera laws designed to correct the lazy Malay soul. Until Indonesia and Philippines does this our economy will always be ruled by the hardworking Chinese and the lazy native Indio hacienderos.

    Disclaimer: I’m a native Filipino Malay Indio

  5. Manolo, at least in countries where the electorate is better educated, politicians don’t pander as shamelessly. And they refer to a program of government or a platform. Or to a party stand. Perhaps it’s more because we don’t have a real party system here that politicians just take sides on issues as the wind blows.

  6. Nice post, Manolo.

    I don’t think the Philippine electorate is less educated compared to other advanced democratic countries. I mean, the functional literacy level of Filipino population is somewhere in the 80%-85% level, and I believe that because even the simple people I meet in the city and in the provinces can read and write. Paano sila tataya sa jeuteng kung ‘di sila read nor write?

    People in advanced democratic countries are more critical of the wrong doings of their politicians, and they are generally more independent minded — now that is a big difference. We’re meeker, and humbler, especially when an important person is around. The difference is really pretty much cultural, I think, like what absolut_vanilla observed.

  7. i have a lot of faith even in the “least” of my countrymen during election time because they’ve seen it all. our neighbors are not smarter. i think the unschooled of this nation are better skilled in sifting through propaganda than other asian masses. the intelligence basket of this region is this country. our only fault is that we’re too damn pretty that foreign interests never stopped screwing us up. that’s centuries of rape with different offenders. no other country in the region has had it this bad in terms of intervention. and as always, there are local pimps who help these f_ckers satisfy their lust. we thought it will be over once the bases are removed but just when we thought we can already spread our wings, here comes terrorism and the discovery of energy sources. sometimes, good looks can really be a curse.

    everyody’s favorite pimp is again selling (or is it lobbying) his own, using the likes of sec bert g. will someone please do this country a favor and rip open his face? you can start from that really ugly scar on his upper lip he got from a jumping accident (parachute). ‘kinda makes you think, “ba’t ‘di pa siya namatay dun?”

  8. I don’t think the educational level is based on merely the literacy level. asolut_vanilla 2000’s observations are interesting and may prove to be correct. But they are mere conjectures right now.

    Our problem is that we don’t have a sense of history or a sense of unity of purpose. I may have confused the level of education with this. Perhaps the superiority of the Chinese and Indian cultures are due to the fact that they are older, wiser and much more esperienced than ours.

    But be that as it may, we still lag behind the educational level of most advanced countries, even if they do have their “white trash”.

  9. bogchimash said “i have a lot of faith even in the ‘least’ of my countrymen during election time because they’ve seen it all.” i agree totally and it is unfortunate that so much of our countrymen’s potential stays untapped because the circumstances they find themselves in. We have to address the inequality that keeps the capabilities of the majority of Filipinos under a lid. Proposed solutions that advocate concentrating more voting or governing power to an elite will most likely end up serving the privleged few to the exclusion of the rest.

  10. # 8 “Perhaps the superiority of the Chinese and Indian cultures are due to the fact that they are older, wiser and much more esperienced than ours.”

    Carl, I think your assumptions as to why Indians and Chinese got rich in the SEA are incorrect.

    In Malaysia, the reason they got rich is because they were so poor to begin with. Poverty is the greatest motivator in the world.

    The Indians and the Chinese brought over by the English to work the rubber plantations were the poor lot. Mostly farmers. Some Indians were even Caste.

    Now you may ask why the Malays, who are also poor, didn’t get rich early on and needed Bumiputera laws.

    Some reasons I can think of are that Malays in Malaysia were in their own land with relatives all around, so even though they were poor they had some sort of support system. And when you got relatives, why work hard? I’m sure you’ve noticed this trait even among Filipinos.

    On the other hand, the Chinese and Indians had no relatives, no land, nothing. They were slaves. All they had was the willingness to “take the jobs the Malays won’t take”. That’s what motivated them to get rich.

    While in the Philippines and Indonesia, the Chinese that “immigrated” here were of the Merchant kind. In the 1500’s, when the Ming Dynasty was restricting the activity of Chinese, some of them went Indonesia and the Philippines. I don’t know what happened in Indo but in our country, they were forbidden from engaging in business, as the Spaniards were monopolizing trade and introducing the enconmiendas. They were even massacred in Manila, but some of them spread out through the islands with their mercantalist spirit and eventually became rich. Some were even “assimilated” into Malay society, losing their business prowess and becoming “lazy”.

    The big Chinese tycoons (mostly Fukinese) that emigrated in the 1930’s and 1940’s were driven out of China with the emergence of communism. As to why this lot came to dominate Philippine business, I have no idea. Probably the same reason as the Malaysian Chinese (no support system).

  11. If the eight million overseas Filipino workers (I guess mostly Malays of the non-merchant class who are driven out of their country because of the ineptness of the “entrepreneurial class” to create domestic employment opportunities for them) are the country’s best asset, then this bashing of the “lazy” Malays should stop.

    Central Bank records also indicate that while the favored class stash their assets in safer climes at times of turmoil, the contribution of these Filipinos in exile are steadily growing – officially $8.54 billion in 2004, (or unofficially $14 billion). These remittances are about ten times more than the almighty Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs), the attraction of which has been the focus of the Philippines economic strategy – a strategy peddled as the country’s salvation by the mainstream media (and guess who own them) as if to show that the apathetic Domestic Direct Investment by the risk-averse 2-5% “hardworking immigrants” should be excused.)

    However, I agree in part with “no support system” argument of absolute-vanilla2000. A footnote in one of my writings explains this agreement:


    The economic success of the ethnic Chinese in Southeast Asia — by the argument of some adopting the Weberian thesis — is attributed to Confucian ethics, while others consider it as owing to certain cultural factors such as saving habits or attitudes toward education. I don’t buy these theories for, otherwise, there would have been no Chinese Revolution by millions of hungry and humiliated Chinese people.

    My two cents on the causes of this disproportionately high economic performance of overseas Chinese are: FIRST, a key success factor is the immense pressure to succeed “outsiders” imposed upon themselves once in far-off land; SECOND, newcomers were normally provided with the “benefit of head start” by those who had come earlier and made it. (One fitting example is taipan John Gokongwei, Jr., who delivered a speech at the Ateneo de Manila University on “entrepreneurship” in July 2002, tracing his rags-to-riches story ala Horatio Alger but admitting he was given a head start by then China Bank Chairman Dr. Albino Sycip, and DK Chiong, then the Bank’s president, an opportunity often denied to other struggling start-ups.); THIRD, those who opted for the life of exile – the Jews who wandered everywhere, America’s founding fathers and the Pinoy immigrants and OFWs are, I think, of the same variety – are generally, and maybe “genetically,” risk-takers, and just like the “pirates and the pariahs” of the ancient, they are not only survivors but among the “cream of the crop”; and FOURTH BUT NOT LEAST, being explorers as well as exploiters, they benefited greatly under the dominant economic system of “survival of the fittest.”

  12. Filipinos dont ever learn. We still thinks like a slave of the spaniards. we fight for left overs of our masters. thats what I think. We fight each other to get to being a master’s lapdog. thats what we are. 400 years and counting

    Take a look to that tsekwa that my grandfather said that his grandfather just used to be a taho vendor and now his grandson owns a construction firm. My lolo told me the key of the chinese success is that ” Apo kahit piso lang ang kitain mo pwera pa sa puhunan pumayag ka na dahil at least bumalik ang puhunan mo at mura pa produkto mo. sa volume ka kikita at huwag mong iisipin ang kumita na malaki sa pirapiraso lang.” come to think of it we filipinos wanted to earn big bucks in the easiest way possible. thats our difference with our neighbors. We wanted to be big in no time.

    We need to have a dictator. We need some ass spanking to learn our mistakes. we need someone to clean or purge our country from corruption and bad people. we need someone we fear and follow. Fear is a good weapon to discipline our citizenry. Projecting fear and compassion from that leader will ensure this country’s growth.

    but that leader is not Gloria. I’d rather follow bro. eddie villanueva than that bitch who screwed my vote. I’d rather shout praise the lord than saying I was here because the POPE and GOD made me president.

    have your ears cleaned. something is up. keep your eyes open and your ears on the ground. catch that rumour. a very big thunder will come. something is really up.

  13. We needed a benevolent dictator yesterday but our society was unable to produce one. What we incubated was a brilliant and scheming Marcos, who could have equalled Lee and Mahathir, but was ultimately lacking in putting country above self or family. Yes, just like Suharto. Hmmm. I’m not very sure if that’s because we are Malay (which folows old Lee Kuan Yew and Mahathir theories that the Malays are incapable of sustained enterprise, left to their own.)

    After Marcos, we suffer the consequences of a shallow leadership pool, abetted by the continued middle class exodus and the elite’s historically selfish inability to build a country. Where does that leave us? It leaves us with lackluster charlatan “leaders” like (fill in the name of every president after Marcos).

    What’s the next best solution if we can’t find a good dictator? Break up into federated datuships. We’ve never abandoned that pre-hispanic allegiance to our datus and rajahs(now re-fashioned as mayors and governors) who, in turn, pledge allegiance to the most powerful Sultan of the day (a mostly ceremonial and token arrangement). I’m borrowing Prof. Ed Alegre’s ideas here. The Philippines will become like the, hmmm, the federated states of micronesia, i guess. It’s the alternative to this colonial structure which is slowly disintegrating. We have thus far failed to imagine ourselves as one nation, one community. There is no one figure to capture our imagination as a nation either so time to break up, eh?

  14. manolo,

    nice destabilization column today. hahaha!

    on another note, I wonder why Brenda’s getting all the spotlight in the news. Kawawa naman ang lola. Wag niyo na kasing patulan. :p


  15. paeng, pilyo ka talaga haha. si brenda? aba siyempre taktika para mawalan ng pansin ang tutoong laman ng mga senate probe.

  16. F., as a “modest proposal”, why not break away into several republics? That way, all the republics can disown the Philippines’ national debt. That would clean the slate for a fresh new start. After that, it will be up to the abilities of each new republic to survive and progress.

  17. MLQ3…

    With the Mud flying around now, I think it is time to do as i said before watch who you are seen with where and what you discuss.

    I am sure more revelations are going to come out soon and the cross fire between the political groups is going to take inocent casulties with them.

    Sorry not read your article as i am staying as positive as possible.

    More power to you and your bloggers…

  18. Ed, I think your line of reasoning is like that who has given up.
    Better a Bro. Eddie than gloria.
    From the start of this crissis I have never herd important question asked.
    1.Who did it & why?
    2.Who ordered it?
    3.Why the one year delay?
    4.The tapes could have been a bomb shell to justify FPJ’s case but why was it not presented then?
    5.Since FPJ is certainly in a much better place,then, who will profit from it now?
    6.The perpetratiors of the tape knew very well the material will not tsnad in court, so why did they release it?
    7.Was it because they wanted to completely ruin PGMA’s credibility?
    8.What do they have to gain when PGMA losses credibility?
    9.Waht will happen when the Presidency is weakened?
    10.Who are the possible people who will step in?
    11.Has not the pressures on PGMA been going on from day one that she took over from Erap?
    12.have there not been continous atempts to bring PGMA until the greatest blow of the tapes?
    13.Do you think the people who lost power to PGMA will take things sitting down?
    14.Are the issues really being drive by morals or right or wrong?
    15.Why did Drilon backstab PGMA when just a few day earlier he welcomed her to Iloilo?
    16.What’s in it for Drilon?
    17.Do you really think he has clean hands?
    18.Why was the dramatic resigmations centered on the economic managers specificaly?
    19.Who where those people identified w/?
    20.Just like the CPP-NPA has the NDF as it’s more acceptable face.Is it not possible that this plot also have an acceptanble face in the figure of Cory?afterall are not Drilon & Cory working for the same objectives?
    21.Did not Drilon, Cory & co. lose face in their dramatic attempt to make PGMA resign?
    22.Is it not true that,sadly, in our flawed culture, defeat is never taken lightly?Can this be why there is never an ending to anything?

    There are still so many qiestion to ask before we can really make an informed dicision.
    Who says there is no body tring to manipulate our thoughts and emotions?
    I’m afraid that those heartless evil minded shadows might even succed only because we never exhausted our being truely human beings who can think & reason.
    Just think,if we who have been previlaged to have had an education can still make stupid dicisions.What more a big part of our population who did not have our chance?
    Can we truely say that in a plebesit or elections they can truely make an objective judgment?
    I think it’s really a shame that we put our trust in humans that re partisan.
    The characteristic of great people in history is that they never setteled for superficial things or for second good.
    People, insted of being partisan, discouraged or frustrated or thinking of fantastic things we can’t do anyway or dreaming of the ideal leader we would like.
    What we can really do and is at our rich is work on our attitude.
    If we want to be winners, we must act like winners!
    We have to look beyound the obvious and always ask WHY.
    lets understand what our history is
    Where our revolutionary leaders really united?
    We will never get to where we wanna arrive if we don’t know where we come from.
    They say understanding and acceptance is the first step in solving a problem.
    You don’t have to be in power to make a difference.
    One thing I know when I die I woun’t like my brain sold as slightly used.

  19. joselu,

    i asked same questions before and manolo said maybe the tapes came from people from the administration who can not take GMA anymore. Again, if indeed they are fed up with GMA why do they have to sell the tapes to Mother Lily and Erap? So it goes no wonder they dont succeed because it originated from bad intentions. The way of the Lord may confound many people including Bro Eddie but it always favor good people ( which excludes Bro Eddie who is full of hatred in his heart)…Those who encourage other people especially the military to rise up (just like what Manolo is trying to do) better be prepared because if you succeed (which I hope you would not) you will have to watch your back all the time ..this thing will never end.

    We should instead work..work..the success of our country depends on us Filipinos and not the chinese and the indians..it is the economy that matters not politics!

  20. #11 “then this bashing of the “lazy” Malays should stop.”

    Sorry if I seem to bash my own Filipinos.

    I guess I should qualify this lazy term. In a sense there are a lot of “lazy” natives the world over. The lazy mainland Indians, the lazy Mainland Chinese. I just use the term to refer to mainland Filipinos. Though readers shouldn’t literally construe it to its literal meaning-I use it figuratively, ala Lee Kuan Yew’s and Mahathir’s use of the term Lazy.

    The big wave of Philippine diaspora is only about 25 years old. It took more than 50 years for the Indian and Chinese diaspora to show the results of their hardwork.

    I’m pretty sure we’ll produce our own tycoons. So maybe the Filipino guy who emigrated to overseas 20 years ago and started at the bottom is now just a mid level manager or a supervisor. In 40 years he’ll be upper management. In 60 he’ll be the CEO.

    However unlike you I do believe in the savings ethics of the Chinese.

    But already there are evidence that the money being remitted here are being squandered by their relatives.

  21. Good points, emilie. Sad to say, there are no heroes here. The motivation for selling those “Garci tapes” was nothing more than sheer cupidity. Nobody has purity of purpose. Even Ong made money out of those tapes. As for the military, even if it is the closest thing to a knight in shining armor for a craven opposition, it is still a corrupt and highly politicized institution down to the very core. Remember that PMA topnotcher who was arrested for shoplifting in the U.S. a while back?

    Regarding Manolo’s Inquirer column today, I don’t think he exhorts the military to intervene. He is telling the military to clean up its act first and let the civilians slug it out in the meantime. Manolo just says it in such a subtle way that some may conclude that he is encouraging the military to intervene.

    sleeping, I think quite a number of Bishops agree with you that the mudslinging will get worse. Please refer to this article in today’s Inquirer:

  22. MLQ3 is now being tagged as a destabilizer (#19)? WTF?

    Anyway, I suggest people should look long term. Work, yes, but to ignore politics is a foolish thing to do. You see, we are all part of the body politic. So whatever happens, you are affected, whether you like it or not. It is your life that is affected. You want a good life – then do something about it. Work, if you like. Don’t meddle in politics or ignore what the leaders are doing, fine and go ahead. But don’t complain about corruption, about poverty, about peace and order. Because that is part of our obligations as citizens – to tell our leaders what we want.

    The economy amtters, yes. Politics, too.

    affected, whether you like it or not. It is your life that is affected. You want a good life – then do something about it. Work, if you like. Don’t meddle in politics or ignore what the leaders are doing, fine and go ahead. But don’t complain about corruption, about poverty, about peace and order. Because that is part of our obligations as citizens – to tell our leaders what we want.

    The economy amtters, yes. Politics, too.

    affected, whether you like it or not. It is your life that is affected. You want a good life – then do something about it. Work, if you like. Don’t meddle in politics or ignore what the leaders are doing, fine and go ahead. But don’t complain about corruption, about poverty, about peace and order. Because that is part of our obligations as citizens – to tell our leaders what we want.

    The economy amtters, yes. Politics, too.

    Again, if indeed they are fed up with GMA why do they have to sell the tapes to Mother Lily and Erap?

  23. emilie,yes the bottom line is we must work.
    yes, I also think that something bad like the tape is must not be given importance.
    If we really want to prosper we have to be a “thinking’ society.
    We must have conrol of a fears amd insecuities.
    If it was indeed done but people who can’t stand PGMA, all the more reason it is partisan.
    I think it’s really completely stupid that a Cory Aquino is moralizing on a tapes that is extremly immoral!

  24. as a 3rd generation chinese-filipino, let me just say that there is no “chinese way” or “chinese formula” to success. our grandparents and parents worked hard because they are establishing new lives here. its much like how a lot of filipinos abroad also excel abroad, too.

    but just the same, if there was any comparison to the chinese mentality on society, and to now why the chinese-filipinos are not politically active, it would be the doozers.

    the what?! doozers are characters in the old jim henson series ‘fraggle rock,’ here’s a brief dexcription:

    Doozers – The Builders (www.fragglerocker.com)

    The Doozers are about six inches tall, or knee-high to a Fraggle. They live and work – mostly work – inside Fraggle Rock. They build and build and build magnificent bridges, towers, monuments, roads and anything else they can dream of. They use vegetable protein sticks, processed by mining turnips and radishes in the Gorgs’ Garden, as their building material. If you stopped long enough to realize it, you might say, “You know, those Doozers do the things they do because of the dreams they dream.”

    Even though the Fraggles don’t pay much attention to the Doozers, they do have a keen interest in their architecture – it tastes delicious! Fortunately, the doozers don’t mind that the Fraggles eat their constructions. In fact, they appreciate it because it gives them the space in which to build better ones.

  25. My turn to be real bitchy!

    On whether Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is capable of declaring Martial Law, Senator Recto says >

    What breeding is Recto talking about? First of all, this woman has no breeding. Breeding suggests class or this woman has none! She does everything so embarassingly badly – she lies, cheats, would look at you straight in the eye then would swear to high heavens (blasphemous woman to boot) that she would not do this nor do that and then turn around and do the exact opposite of what she’d promised you a minute back and she can’t even do it well!

    And that is breeding? To Recto, that must be breeding…This woman has NO class! Why else would she practise HARLOT politics (borrowed from Billy Esposo)? They say that once a harlot, always a harlot; that’s total absence of breeding… (Chasser le naturel, il reviens au galop!)

    Second, this woman doesn’t even have the class to hide her greed properly. A woman of good breeding doesn’t allow her greed to manifest on the surface. Or greed, with a capital G, is stamped all over this woman’s person; it is so palpable that you don’t even have to touch to feel it’s all over her….she lies to satisfy her insatiable greed, her lust for power! And Recto calls that breeding? OK, OK, maybe Recto meant BAD breeding, sort of mongrel breeding.

    Upbringing? All right, she had a horrible upbringing; not probably her fault – must be Dona Evangelina’s fault – the first midget who brought up Gloria Macapal with similar midget morals, all in keeping with mother and daughter stature. Look at it this way: This woman who lusted for power – she couldn’t contain herself that she had to go out of her way to seduce Angie Reyes to abandon his real, bona-fide, Constitutional Commander-in-Chief for her – was brought up in a world of make believe! She’s been brought up to think that she was a cut above the rest (see where that upbringing landed her…4’7″ in height or below the waist of everybody).

    Training? She had all the training in the world! Her Dad, though a good man, was nevertheless the the poor, sour loser in the Marcos-Macapagal battle and who else would be the best trainer in the exercise of Machiavellian politics than one who had lost big time? During those authoritarian years under Marcos, this midget was trained to observe, to take notes, to study the deeds of the expert at Martial Law and was trained to tuck those lessons in the back burner until she’s ready to avenge her adored, revered, idolized father’s loss. And now all those years of deprivation, those years of humiliation, those years of obscurity will now be erased – it’s time to take REVENGE. She’s been trained exactly to do just that: to exact REVENGE!

    And Recto says that there is nothing in her breeding, upbringing or training that suggests that she’s not capable of being a political cheat, a pompous liar and a wanton thief?

    Gloria, incapable of declaring Martial Law? Why, that’s pure rectal political analysis!

    (Why do Filipinos have a nasty habit of electing people with brand names to the Legislature even if they aren’t capable of doing a proper job of analysing? Real puzzle to me.)

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