Gonzalez = Pinochet

The President’s husband goes home. Lucio Tan’s luck increases: PAL seems poised to gain control of NAIA-3. The Associated Press reports the emerging conventional wisdom: it will be an opposition victory in the Senate, an administration victory in the House, which means more of the same over the next three years.

Overseas: Dubya throws down the gauntlet and vetoes a congressional timetable for an Iraq pullout. Michelle Tsai points out, however, that behind the scenes, both sides will still find ways to cooperate. The French are atwitter over a leading presidential candidate’s wife going AWOL.

My Arab News column for this week is Our Languages and Our Songs in the Philippines.

In his column, Bong Austero tries to clarify what he believes to be misconceptions concerning English and business’ attitude towards the language:

English proficiency is important. But analytical thinking, problem solving, and interpersonal effectiveness skills are more important. And more often than not, the absence of these skills automatically translates into deficiency in English rather than the other way around. In short, someone who lacks analytical thinking skills or interpersonal effectiveness automatically flunks in the area of fluency. We find that the ability to articulate ideas is a function of poor thinking skills to begin with, and not necessarily due to lack of familiarity with English words and phrases.

In other words, it is wrong to assume that the business community is simply complaining about English deficiency. Yes, we bewail the generally declining levels of English proficiency, but we also rile against the generally dismal levels in other competency areas. So as far as we are concerned, the issue is not just about language, but about overall competitiveness of the output of academe.

You saw it coming department: this piece by Rick Saludo, I believe, is significant. He takes the Chief Justice to task, which can only suggest the Supreme Court is now firmly in the Palace’s sights. The most irony-filled sentence in the whole piece? This:

And unlike terrorists, governments submit to legislative and judicial review and restraint and electoral rebuff.


Amando Doronila says the Palace is in a pickle because of the (in)Justice Secretary (who, incidentally, wants to deport Senator Lacson):

First, she sacks or suspends Gonzalez, or second, Gonzalez steps down. Either course is difficult. The first offers the President a dramatic opportunity to reestablish her badly damaged credibility and to regain public confidence in her ability to ensure a fair and free election and carry out a fair administration of justice. The second course is unlikely. If neither option takes place, the consequences for the administration could be more damaging.

But you know what? If you string Gonzalez’s statements together, is it just me or does he sound eerily like Augusto Pinochet? See Posthegemony.

Manuel Buencamino pens an open letter to Satur Ocampo, criticizing the Left’s endorsement of Joker Arroyo and Ralph Recto. The Inquirer editorial wonders why the Palace is upset by the kind of survey it found useful to use in the past. Much as there’s much to agree with the views of Luis Teodoro, for example, I do believe the Left’s decision to endorse Joker Arroyo is politics at its most short-sighted.

Overseas: pot-shot time. Daniel Gross takes aim at Tom Wolfe; Christopher Hitchens takes aim at George Tenet.

In the blogosphere (and online columns), the English-Filipino debate sputters on, see The Ignatian Perspective’s views on bilingual education in America.

Captain’s Log finds the idea of registering blogs stupid. Pinoy.Tech.Blog‘s resident lawyer, Punzi, points out what the legal issues involved, are (privacy, among them). The Unlawyer ties the website registration proposal, with a growing assumption, he says, among market players, that the government will be missing its revenue target goals.

Letters from Asia on a survey in China and a startling conclusion: there still seem to be committed Marxists there.

Jaemark Tordecilla on David Halberstam; see Open Culture for links to Halberstam’s last speech. Joel Saracho recalls Joe Burgos even as Burgos’s son goes missing. In Vanity Fair, exclusive excerpts from the diaries of Ronald Reagan.

Madame Chiang goes to Banaue, and photographs the local substitute for police tape.

A Citizen on Mars recounts a dream he had. Carlos Celdran points to a bizarre, ongoing thread on Filipinos of Spanish extraction.

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Manuel L. Quezon III.

42 thoughts on “Gonzalez = Pinochet

  1. Rick Saludo begins his piece with:

    “Which is more important: the lives of countless innocent people or the rights of a terrorism suspect? Answer: Both. Letting the state violate the latter in defense of the former could, in the extreme, make life dreadful for all citizens. Hence, the imperative to safeguard the life and liberties of every person in any campaign to protect the lives of all.”

    He appears even-handed, doesn’t he?

    But as he develops his argument, he repeats the mindless arguments of Bush to justify the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq so and he can double back on his first paragraph and recast it :

    “The US is accused of violating the rights and well-being of hundreds of suspects and prisoners of war it has detained at home and abroad, including those captured on camera in Iraq camps. But are those abuses more discomforting than the deaths of thousands in the 9/11 attacks, plus countless more likely fatalities if not for the world’s immediate—some say knee-jerk and mindless—response to that enormity? And unlike terrorists, governments submit to legislative and judicial review and restraint and electoral rebuff.”

    He even adds a lie: “And unlike terrorists, governments submit to legislative and judicial review and restraint and electoral rebuff.”

    Bush with the help of his Republican toadies exempted himself from legislative and judicial oversight (read Patriot Act and opinions of Roberto Gonzalez). He fif get rebuffed at the polls last November but not for lack of trying to cheat his way to victory again.

    Saludo asked a question to which he gave the right answer and then he proceeded to undermine what was right so he could justify the human rights violations of the regime he works for.

    One of these days Saludo will say: “Yes. People were arrested and taken into protective custody who had not yet committed any crime, but who could be expected to do so if they remained free… the original reason for creating the concentration camps was to keep there such people whom we rightfully considered enemies of the state.” And Hermann Goehring will be pleased that his words still live in the hearts of present day slime.

  2. Secretary of Justice Raul Gonzalez maybe a lawyer, but still a lot to learn about law. Firstly, he can’t even bring to Justice hundreds Alleged Criminals roaming the streets of the country, and He, himself don’t even realized that he just broke his own country’s Electoral Code. Now, how could he extradite a Philippine National to a country in which he is not even wanted for a Crime? And even so, it is the Court to decide if a U.S. request is granted or not. I think it’s about time for Mr. Gonzalez to retire and fade in the sunset as he is becoming irrelevant and an embarrassment to the country…

  3. MB,

    Satur’s decision clearly indicates that he is junking at least 1 candidate from GO. (Maybe even 2)

    Infering from your statements, doesn’t Satur mean that even if he should see that that candidate from GO has that desire that Gloria Arroyo “not” see it through to 2010; he also doesn’t see that candidate as having a proven commitment in upholding human rights?

  4. justice league,

    First of all, trashing all of TUTA does not mean endorsing all GO candidates. There are other candidates out there who are worthy of a second look, Also, you don’t even have to vote for 12 candidates. So I don’t know if I can infer what you inferred in Satur’s endorsement of a couple of TUTAS.

    My complaint and disappointment with Satur has to do with the fact that he refused to see the disconnect between commitment to upholding human rights and being a part of TUTA.

    In practical terms, which situation would be more conducive to human rights – the continuance of Gloria’s regime or her impeachment?

    And whether intended or not, isn’t a person committed to impeaching Gloria a better bet for ending this climate of impunity than
    electing a candidate who claims to be for human rights but wants to see Gloria, a person Satur himself described as fascist (read his criteria for emdorsinf joker and ralph), stay on until 2010?

    But like I said, trashing all TUTAs is not an automatic endorsement of all GO candidates and endorsing some TUTAs is not an automatic junking of some GO candidates because, for all we know, Satur’s other choices are Oliver Lozano, Victor Wood, Richard Gomez and Juju Cayetano.

    It’s Satur’s criteria I don’t agree with. I think he made a big mistake.

  5. As I mentioned in a hardly-noticed post last week:

    Could somebody please SUE GONZALEZ ALREADY??? Nobody can defend what he did in a court of law, and I’m sure the Supreme Court will deliver what is the clear-cut decision in this case. Put the bastard away, once and for all.

    Nga lang, I’m sure that Gonzalez’s new (unspoken) motto is “If I go down, I’m taking everyone with me.” While most of us would be delighted, I’m sure GMA will make sure it doesn’t happen. I’d like to see what she’ll do in this case, though.

    Raul Gonzalez: one HUGE reason to vote GO.

  6. MB,

    I used your enclosed paragraph below in my inference:

    (Frankly, I don’t understand why you didn’t see the contradiction between Joker and Ralph’s “proven commitment in upholding human rights” and their desire to see Gloria Arroyo through to 2010. There are some things you just can’t do and not do at the same time, like Clinton’s famous line about smoking marijuana, “I smoked but I didn’t inhale.”)

    Well you’re right that trashing all of TU does not mean endorsing all GO candidates but who are these other candidates out there who are worthy of a second look as far as a proven commitment to upholding human rights are concerned (which I think happens to be the main issue of Satur’s endorsement)?

    You’re right again that I don’t have to vote for 12 candidates but 12 candidates are going to win whether I even vote or not.

    Since the issue is the Senate, it appears that you too are echoing that “commitment to impeach” thing also. There has been a related discussion on that sometime ago. I wish you had spoken up back then already.

    Now regarding your contention that endorsement of other candidates is not an automatic junking of some GO candidates; I think that a Satur endorsement of Oliver Lozano, Victor Wood, Richard Gomez and Juju Cayetano along with 2 TU’s would mean an automatic junking of at least 5 GO candidates.

    As to your allegation on what Satur supposedly refuses to see; I think he sees instead the lack of a proven commitment to uphold human rights from certain candidates even if already outside of TU.

    As to your question on what is more conducive; I reserve my answer for now. I think a large part of the answer will depend on what is coming afterward should she be impeached.

  7. buencamino, the best argument that, unlike the terrorist, government submits to the rule of law and respects human rights is the fact that you are right now making bald assertions against it without an iota of restraint, and with complete impunity.

  8. bencard, “the best argument that, LIKE the terrorist, government DOES NOT submit to the rule of law and respects human rights is the fact that you are right now making bold DENIALS without an iota of restraint, and with complete impunity.”

    You know it’s funny that the initial reaction of your regime to the issue of command responsibility was to form a committee to redefine it. That, if the stench of corpses did not do it, should have been your wake-up call.

  9. justice league,

    i am against charter change under arroyo. I am for impeachment. That’s my criteria.

    As to what you think Satur sees, you coud be right. But that’s why I think he’s wrong because there is a diconnect between someone who fights for human rights and runs on the ticket of Gloria Arroyo, the one sitting on top of the human rights violation machinery.

    Like I said, you can’t smoke and not inhale at the same time, you can’t say you don’t like M&Ms except for the orange ones. You buy TU, you buy Gloria and everything that goes with it.

    You’re correct 12 will win anyway. My only consolation is that I would not be responsible for the victory of candidates I don’t like. It would not be on my conscience, I belong to the conscience vote not the command, coerced, or commercial vote.

  10. buencamino, to help you understand my last post, I will rephrase it. If the government does not follow the rule of law and respect your “human rights”, you would not live to write the inflammatory things you love to write in this blog.

    Command responsibility is apropo only to one-man rule, not to democracy where governance is collectively exercised. Would you rather have a dictatorship where power and responsibility are both lodged in one person or entity? If you don’t understand what I’m saying here, let me know

  11. Finally, I after a hohum exchanges on the language debate, somebody like Bong Austero got its so well. Its really the interpersonal skills and problem solving abilities that matter most!

  12. bencab, obviously you need to understand the meaning of command responsibillity. You can read up on it in the Nuremberg trials or look at MLQ’s explainer site where the issue was discussed or check international conventions on the subject.

    Y;m surprised you do not know that Ccommand responsibiity is NOT apropos only to one-man rule. There is a chain of command even in democracies.

    By the way, collective governance as exercised in a democracy does not mean no one can be held accountable. The word governance itself implies a governor and a governed. Command responsibility rests on the governor, the one on top of the heap.

    Now go do your homework.

  13. it is not possible to fight for something if the one on top of you is against it.

    if joker arroyo is still the same man everyone knew in the martial law days, then why is he running under the ticket of someone close to the man we used to opposed in the past?

    personally, i have nothing against joker arroyo and in fact still thinking if i will vote for him.

  14. buencad, have you heard of tri-partite, co-equal, inter-dependent branches of government in a democracy? How about the principle of checks and balances, do you have any clue of that?

    How is it that you and your ilk are so paranoid about PGMA wanting to impose a dictatorial regime, yet blame her for every wrong that happens in the country? How can you hold her responsible for the malfeasance or non-feasance of senators, judges, comelec officials, and other constitutional officers over whom she has no direct, personal control?

    In a democracy, the “governor” is not exactly “on top of the heap”. He/she shares power with others. It’s only fitting that he/she shares responsibility, as well. It’s all a matter of fairness.

    Command responsibility is not is not an unwritten edict from an ultra-supreme authority. It has to be specifically ordained by the Law of the land to be binding. Not even you and MLQ3 together can impose that. Not at all, buddy!

  15. Yeah, rego. Austero may have something there. Great idea for a thesis or a paper.

    As for the “opposition victory in the Senate, an administration victory in the House”, I believe the Senate is the key. If the members of the House are convinced that the Senate will convict if an impeachment trial gets to them, the votes from one-third of the House could be attainable, no matter what their party affiliations are now. These guys go where the pork is. If the Senate won’t convict, they will not impeach for fear of backlash (the withholding of pork). But if the Senate will convict…

  16. Mr. Austero weighs English proficiency against analytical thinking, problem solving, and interpersonal effectiveness, like the former was some distinct and separate entity from the latter, rather than as an end part of a total process.

    But in trying to understand what proficiency entails it may be shown that that path of thinking may be giving short shrift to it.

    Proficiency, as separately defined by some, entails the following: the quality of having great facility and competence; skillfulness in the command of fundamentals, etc.; the ability to apply knowledge to situations, etc.; or mastery or the ability to do something at grade level.

    Thus, I cannot see how in this particular instance, English proficiency, the process does not involve acquiring of skills for analytical thinking, problem solving, and interpersonal effectiveness to arrive at proficiency.

    Maybe English proficiency is understood differently? Or its standards and expectations are lower?

  17. rego,

    so what’s new with austero’s argumenation? patricia licuanan has said that in her position paper: “the problem is not just english, it’s the whole philippine education system!” or something to that effect.

  18. MB,

    Though I am not against Charter Change per se; I found the provisions (practically the main issues too) of the proposed revision disgusting so I fought it myself.

    A personal question if I may; are you against cruelty to animals? Are you a vegan?

    And since your consolation is that you would not be responsible for the victory of candidates you don’t like; how many candidates are you planning to vote for anyway and how many do you feel need to be voted of your kind of candidates to attain impeachment?


    I can’t quite completely understand what you tried to say but if you wish; you can also answer my 2 questions.

  19. justice league,

    simply put, i am not sure if il vote for joker arroyo.

    he was a human rights advocate and i can’t believe he ran under the administration ticket who has done several (?) human rights violation.

    personal question (though im sure if its for me.)

    no, im not a vegan but we did a simulated press conference entitled Paulinians for the EThical treatment of animals for our PR class. 🙂

  20. Bencad, medyo na wala ka na. I am holding arroyo responsible for what happens in the executive branch and in the military of which she is the commander in chief/ In the executive branch she us on top of the heap. She is responsible for what happens in her branch of gpvernment and she cannot spread the blame to the SC and Congress for acts within her branch which she inititiates.

    Add to your homeworl a reading on tripartite forms of government and the concept of checks and balance abd separation of powers

  21. justice league,

    I am not a vegetarian. I eat meat pork fowl cattle whatever. I am against cruelty period. I am vehemently opposed to charter change under arroyo. we can talk about it after she leaves.

    How many are needed for impeachment? you know the bumbers in both hiuse and senate that’s why I said sometime ago “hitler first stalin later” ib referebce to the alliance of churchill and roosevelt against hitler. they knew the greater evil, and not only them. Even stalin the avowed enemy of capitalists teamed up with roosevelt and churchill to defeat fascism. obviously he was also thinking hitler first capitalists later.

    who would I endorse? Noynoy, Sonia, and Alan Peter; without hesitation or reservation. The rest well I see them as stalin to hitler.

  22. Janie,

    Your use of the enclosed question mark seems appropriate.

    Unless corrected, I’m assuming that you quite approved of your simulated press conference though you yourself are not a vegan.

    Very well.


    I think the initial part of your first paragraph puts things in proper context.

    And since I’m in no hurry anyway for Charter Change, sure we can talk about it after her.

    I have no problem with the argument of the Allies teaming together to defeat Hitler as I used it lots of times myself.

    Though I hope you factored in the 3 years PGMA supposedly has left along with the new 6 years the 9 other Senate members (who you will not endorse but win anyway) will get to have.

    Please bear in mind also some groups don’t seem amenable for the VP to take over. The next possible scenario having the Senate President becoming President.

    Though it will just be till a “snap” election for the executive chiefs; the Senate President who will be Pres. can have the so called “equity of the incumbent”. Your “Stalin to Hitler” might end up as “Stalin to Stalin”.

  23. justice league,

    i quite approved of the no-to-animal-cruelty advocacy but only up to a certain extent, that’s why i am not a vegan yet.

    and i disagree with your point about VP to take over. i think that’s one of the reasons why an impeachment hasn’t succeeded over the past years.

    i am not pro-gma, but honestly, i can’t find someone i find suitable for her position.

  24. janie,

    kiko. he did make amends for “noted” by joining the clamor for arroyo to resign. but there’s something about him that gives me bad vibes. besides i bet most of his votes are really out of loyalty to sharon. ang he belongs to the ralph, joker, manny, noli axis. they are all campaigning for each other so why didn’t they just run together ala kapatiran?

    chiz. gwapo lang yan ngayon kc anti-arroyo ang dating. pero what’s his political party? danding. who was his father’s patron? marcos. i also wonder why unlike noynoy and alan peter, the arroyos did not make it their mission to defeat him. he was the opposition leader in the house during the impeachment di ba?

    si koko pa pwede.

  25. justice league,

    your stalin to stalin scenario is possible. the cold war lasted for 40 years not just another 6 years But remember, we are electing legislators not a chief executive. they cannot order the military, or the police or any other instrument of vindictiveness to go after their enemies.they are there for check and balance if impeachment is out of reach

    one major reason why we want impeachment candidates is the charter change issue which can really screw us up much longer than the 6 years we will have to put up with from some undesirable but for impeachment legislators.

    I am not worried about the equity of the incumbent. Post war, it never worked until marcos in 69. it takes a special person like gloria or marcos to make it work, if you know what i mean.

    there are too many people in the upper and middle classes who are not amenable to a noli takeover but really do you think he can actually do more harm to our democratic institutions than that woman we have now?

  26. buencad, do you know of any democratic president, dead or alive, any where in the world, who went to jail for the acts of people in his/her administration, in which he/she did not participate as a principal or co-conspirator? If you don’t understand those terms, consult a lawyer or just drop it.

  27. Bencard,

    “in which he/she did not participate as a principal or co-conspirator?” is that your operative phrase?

    If the president was a principal or co-consprator then he doesn’t fall under command responsibility because he is a principal and co-conspirator.

    If he did not participate as a principal or co-conspirator then he would be liable under the principle of command responsibility because he is responsible for the behavior of those under him.

    The only way he escapes command responsibility is if he punishes his subordinates because that proves he is a responsible commander who does not tolerate shit.

    Now the fact that no one has been jailed under command responsibility does not mean the principle does not exist.

    The fact that no one, president or common man, in a democracy or any other political system, has ever gone to Pluto does not mean Pluto does not exist. It does. We can see it. It’s just that nobody has visited it yet.

    Maybe this example will be easier for you to grasp:

    Do you think your neighborhood Starbucks manager will be fired if his subordinates were slapping around their customers and stealing from the cash register?

    Command responsibility in Starbucks is the same as command responsibility in government. Especially tri-partite forms of government where the chief executive runs the store.

    Each branch in a tri-partite system has its own responsibility – the legislature passes laws and exercises oversight, the judiciary referees and rules on legal issues, the executive runs the store.

    Please finish your reading assignment. Try to absorb the concepts and the principles before you go shooting your mouth off with pseudo legal arguments for Gloria’s dereliction of duty.

  28. sorry for the double posting but Bencad doesn’t seem to understand things with just one reading.

  29. buencad:

    I don’t care how you would do it, but would you find and cite a provision in any existing Philippine law penalizing an act that falls under your so-called “command responsibility”? If you do I will give you my law degrees and licenses (if there’s any way I can do it legally). I think you are way off your rocker. Don’t talk and pretend you are something which you are not. It stinks!

    Nullum crimen nulla pena sine lege. Understand that, buddy.

  30. bencad,

    tell me if there is no such thing as command responsibility why did Gloria order the AFP to form a committee to study it and come up with a “better” definition?

    you obviously did not read the assignment I gave you. go sit in a corner . nullum homework nulla play sine lege, lawyer boy.

  31. buencad,

    not the kind of command responsibility you understand with your flea brain, you shit-eating “professor”.

  32. Bencad,

    hahahahaha ang pikon talo.

    by the way, next time you get poor service anywhere, don’t ask or the manager.

  33. bencard, mb: the question of command responsibility is interesting, not least because it’s legal territory that’s still pretty fresh. See:


    concerning bencard’s “Nullum crimen nulla pena sine lege.” That concept was raised as a defense argument before the war crimes trials for the former yugoslavia. the court decided on it face, it wasn’t a valid argument:


    concerning the place of “command responsibility” under our law, it might help to look at president ramos’s executive order adopting it as a policy covering the entire government:


    the briefings the president received in 2002:


    you can also refer to the government’s own views, as shown in the melo commission report:


    see also:


    and the jurisprudence on marcos’ culpability for human rights violations:


    See also the script of my Explainer episode on command responsibility:


  34. http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/?page=bongAustero_may2_2007

    Sabi ni Austero:

    On the other side of the debate are those who believe that the current (dismal) level of proficiency in English among graduates already requires drastic measures. It might also be important to note that no one in the business community has come forward to categorically express unqualified support for EO 210. Even my own professional organization, the People Management Association of the Philippines which, by virtue of its stature as the national organization of human resource management practitioners in the country should be a key participant in the discussion, still has to come up with an official position on the matter.

    However, insinuations that the business community prompted this latest wrinkle are running thick. In particular, some fingers are pointing at the call center industry which has been experiencing difficulty in finding graduates that meet its English proficiency requirements.

    ewan ko lang kung nabasa na ni Bongbong yung isinulat na article ni fellow MST collumnist Peter Wallace, director of the Australian-NZ chamber of commerce in the Philippines


    ‘Magandang araw, ito po si Glaiza, anong maipaglilingkod ko sa inyo?’

    If you don’t know what that means, then join the 6.4 billion other people on this planet that don’t either.

    “Hello, Glaiza speaking. How may I help you?”

    Almost two billion people understand that. English is used by a quarter of the world’s population and is considered as the global lingua franca. It is the dominant international language in communications, science, business, aviation, entertainment, diplomacy, and the Internet.

    The English-speaking crowd is something the Philippines definitely wants, or at least should want to be, a part of. And Filipinos have already shown a remarkable ability to be conversant in the language. Specifically, the country is now number two in call centers in the region. From zero employees just six years ago, the industry now employs 145,000, and it’s not slowing down.

    Well, actually it could for one simple, sad reason: there won’t be enough English-speaking, English-comprehending Filipinos to hire.

    So it’s a very welcome development to see the President recognize the importance of reverting to English as the primary language of education. House Bill 4701 mandating this was passed in the House of Representatives. Let’s hope the Senate acts with equal dispatch. The administration takes the credit for pushing this piece of legislation.

    katulad ng sinabi ni instapundit, read the whole thing. so that you may understand why kuya manuel reacted negatively to wallace’s article:


    Much as I, too, favor increased attention and resources given to the promotion of English, it’s notions like those peddled by Peter Wallace that help discredit the proponents of the language.

  35. MB,

    Yes, we think we are electing legislators. But just in case PGMA goes out and the VP takes over; the incoming VP will be from either house of Congress just like former VP Guingona. And should Pres. De Castro go? Well, I can’t really say if this is totally applicable given that our laws are not totally similar to the U.S.’s but Pres. Ford comes to my mind.

    And if indeed by some legal way VP De Castro DOES NOT succeed PGMA should she be impeached; the Senate President (whoever he/she will be since a Senate “reorganization” is possible even if Sen. Villar should get re-elected as Senator) shall be President. (Next in line would be the Speaker of the House if the Senate President is not able or if there is none)

    Given the scenarios that certain people want; we will be in effect electing people to the Senate; one of which might very well become a chief executive able to do all those things you enumerated.

    As for the equity of the incumbent, given our Constitution (since re-election to the Presidency is not allowed); it will not just depend on a special person but also on special occasions just like what benefited PGMA.

    Given another such special occasion; whoever will “succeed” as President can have that equity.

    When Bong Austero posted his now famous article (Darn, I can’t remember the title); one of the issues I had with his article was that he seemed to have taken the VP out of the loop of succession and was harping on the Opposition for not having a worthy “replacement”. But the Constitution provides for it and I am for that Constitutional succession even though I don’t like De Castro either.

    Now as for your 2nd paragraph; EVERY PRESIDENT from ex-President Marcos to PGMA (including ex-Pres. Estrada) favored one kind of Charter Change from another. So it is not far fetched that the next guy will favor it. Nor is it far fetched that PGMA will try again.

    But I believe that at this time; any unfavorable attempt and/or any unfavorable provision in a revision of the Constitution can be fought on “solid ground” even if supported by any sitting President.

    I seem to have forgotten to thank both you and Janie for indulging me in my personal question. So to both of you, please consider this as “better late than never”.

  36. mlq3, still nothing in existing Philippine law that could hold a president liable under “command responsibility” for the acts of others. The cases you cited in international situations usually involves vanquished totalitarians who were judged by the victors. In the case of Marcos? What can I say, he was the “Law”, judge, jury and executioner, although there was some semblance of “due process” carried out by some willing or unwilling collaborators. As to Ramos’ executive order, it was his own policy, neither required nor prohibited by the Constitution. I would hazard a guess that it was largely influenced by his brilliant military background.

    MB, one thing I like about you is that you are a good sport. You are one of a few who not only can “dish it out” but can also “take it”.

  37. and, contrary to you statement, mlq3, the “nullum crimen” principle was not held “not valid” by the international court in Blascik but that it had not been violated because “customary international law” recognizes the offense of “failure to punish”.

  38. bencard, please explain the difference between what i said, and what you say the court said. my understanding is “nullum crimen” was put forward as a means of getting charges dropped; the court said that wasn’t a valid argument… i’m all for precision in language so please explain.

  39. mlq3, all i wanted to point out is that the doctrine of nullum crimen was not abrogated by the court but was only held not a “valid” argument – for the purpose of the Blascik case (only) – because the principle was not violated as far as the court is concerned.

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