Monday, October 31, 2005

Commenting on B&W's post-Arroyo reform agenda

Ito ang post-Arroyo reform agenda ng Black and White movement:

On Electoral Reforms

Acknowledging that there will be no credible elections without electoral reforms, the group calls for the adoption of the following measures:

- Appointment of new Commission on Elections (Comelec) commissioners who are competent and fair
- Adoption of modern and transparent systems with meaningful citizen participation in voter registration, vote casting, counting, and canvassing
- Convening of a truth commission to uncover electoral fraud in the 2004 elections

I think ito ang pinaka-importante sa lahat. If we don't learn from GLORIAGATE and take the necessary steps to correct the problem, may posibilidad na mauulit itong ganitong klaseng dayaan sa 2007 elections and beyond.

In order for Filipinos to feel confident na they can make a difference (and punish incompetent politicians), our elections need to be credible. Kung hindi, idadaan ulit ng taongbayan sa people power ang pagpapatalsik ng mga illegitimate, corrupt at mandarayang politicians.

Except for GMA, who I would be glad to pardon (para mapabilis ang pag-heal ng GLORIAGATE wounds), all those who are responsible for GLORIAGATE needs to be identified and punished.

On Reforms in the Justice System

In order to hasten judicial processes and make these more transparent and accessible to all citizens, the group proposes to:

- Enhance alternative dispute settlement and develop paralegal systems
- Strengthen Court of Tax Appeals and the Office of the Ombudsman
- Set up special courts for settling business disputes
- Ensure their adequate independent budget

As long as we appoint competent and impartial judges (and not cronies like Arroyo's laywer Antonio Carpio or GMA's former chief-of-staff Renato Corona), I think we'll do fine.

Isa pa, I want Supreme Court justices and RTC judges to be confirmed by the Senate. At dapat, pwedeng mag-filibuster ang minority kung sa tingin nila ay hindi maganda ang qualifications ng isang judge o kung partisan ito, para naman hindi na lang idadaan ng majority sa numero ang pag-confirm ng mga judges (whether competent or incompetent sila). To break the filibuster, you need 60% of the Senate voting for the nominee.

I'm in favor of term limits for SC justices too.

On Financial and Economic Reforms

- Restore government revenues to 1990s level in proportion to national income
- Run after tax cheats (especially those who owe the government P25 billion)
- Collect proper income taxes from businesses, professionals (doctors, lawyers, entertainers and others)
- Legislate and collect higher sin taxes
- Exercise fiscal restraint
- Reduce debt by creative non-arbitrary means
- Ensure a level playing field and curb rent-seeking

Cut unnecessary spending. Reduce or Abolish Pork Barrel funds.

On Peace Efforts

- Stop discredited purely military tactics that have not worked and will not work, and only create new enemies for our system
- Step up negotiations with MILF, NDF-CPP-NPA, RPMP-PRA, and RPMM-RPA
- Respect peace agreements

Work with the US gov't on providing financial aid and assistance to the Muslim-dominated areas in Mindanao. I hope the Philippines will fully qualify next year for the Millennium Challenge Account, so that the next president can declare na all the US/MCA aid money (or most of it anyways) will be used to develop Mindanao.

On Bureaucratic and Military Reforms

- Uphold transparency, accountability, citizen participation, responsiveness, efficiency, and predictability as key elements of good governance
- Use competence, integrity, and commitment to good governance as basic values in setting criteria for recruitment and promotion
- Restore promotions and rewards systems in the AFP and PNP
- Develop effective strategies for defeating state enemies, preventing the rise of international terrorism in the country, and winning the peace

No complaints here.

I'll comment on the other parts later.

1 comment:

Joperd said...

Simplifying and perhaps flattening the tax system would be a good idea, I'm certain.