Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Richard Gomez to run for Senator under administration ticket

Natupad na ang pangarap ni Goma:

Actor Richard Gomez will be running for senator under the administration’s unity ticket, Gomez himself told INQUIRER.net Wednesday.

Gomez said he would take his oath next week as member of the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC), an ally of the administration coalition.

“The President is happy that I am supporting her policies and visions for our country,” Gomez said in a phone interview.

He said that he also has the blessing of former president Joseph Estrada whose advice he initially sought over his plan to run for the Senate.

Another anomalous transaction at the COMELEC?

Ah, siguro may makikinabang na namang COMELEC official sa overpricing na to, just before the elections:

It’s a hoary joke that goes back to Leonardo Perez, Ferdinand Marcos’ election operator.
It’s the one about the Commission on Elections not knowing how to count. Well, the Comelec has apparently struck again - this time not on adding votes but on determining which quantity is bigger than another.

The fogies at the Comelec probably were not taught set theory when they in their elementary grades. There are these signs ">" and "<" which when inserted between two numbers indicate that one is bigger or smaller than the other. For example: "23,899 > 14,999." The relationship is easy enough to grasp. And actually our beef with Comelec is not about set theory. It’s on the matter of honesty, credibility and not making a fast buck in every supply deal it contracts out.

Last Jan. 23, the Comelec awarded a contract for the supply of paper for ballots to be used in the May elections. The contract went to Lamco Paper Products Corp. with its bid of P23,899 per ream. For Comelec’s total paper requirement, the deal amounted to P310 million plus change.

The mystery that prompted suspicions the Comelec is innumerate is the existence of another bidder, Advance Computer Forms, which offered to supply the paper for P14,999 per ream or a total of P194.8 million.

The difference between the two bids is 60 percent or P115 million. So why was the contract given to the company which submitted the higher bid?


Curiously, the specifications for the paper were changed three days before the bidding on Jan. 20. The original specification was for "watermarked mechanical bond paper for official ballots, 70 gsm, with watermarked impression."

The revised specification called for "wood-free book paper, white-85 gsm. Paper shall contain watermark made through mechanical process by dandy roll."

The Comelec made additional required security features for the paper as follows:

* Dark violet spots that appear at random when exposed to direct sunlight or ultra-violet light.

* After-glow spots that appear in the dark after the paper is exposed to fluorescent light.

* Chemical or solvent sensitive features similar to those found in a CBS-1 (clearing board specification 1) or security paper used in the production of bank checks.

Somebody apparently tailored the new specification to suit one bidder. The question: In whose pocket will the P115 million "retaso" end up?

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

CBCP issues it's ritual call for clean elections

(rolleyes)

From the Daily Tribune:

With all the questions in the May 2004 elections left hanging, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) yesterday said Filipinos “cannot afford yet another controversial electoral exercise that further aggravates social distrust and hopelessness.”

In a pastoral statement read by Jaro Archbishop Angel Lagdameo, also the president of the CBCP, he urged voters to “choose wise, discerning and experienced people” especially that the question of the legitimacy of the Arroyo presidency remains unsettled.

“These coming elections in May 2007 are especially important. Many of our current political problems which have hindered fuller economic development and social justice, especially for the poor, can be traced to unresolved questions concerning the conduct of past

elections,” Lagdameo told a press conference during the end of their three-day plenary assembly.

He, however, stressed the CBCP is not inclined to give guidelines but the church hierarchy leaves them to bishops to issue their own guidelines that would help voters in choosing their candidates, adding they would better know the realities happening in their dioceses.

The prelate said they are mobilizing the basic ecclesiastical communities in the respective dioceses to ensure honest, orderly and peaceful elections.

“We are determined that we come together once more and organize ourselves more effectively than we have done in the past to make this year’s elections credible and free of violence as possible,” the CBCP president added.

“We seek only one thing: To apply the values of the Gospel to our electoral process,” Lagdameo stressed.

Cagayan de Oro Archbishop Antonio Ledesma, for his part, said the results of the May 2007 polls will determine the fate of the government particularly on the unresolved legitimacy issue hounding President Arroyo.

“The coming elections will be the real people’s initiative. Don’t talk about Cha-cha (Charter change) this time but let’s talk first of how the people feel about the current administration and this unresolved cases in the previous election,” he added.

Assuming that the May 14 polls are clean, honest and peaceful, and the administration candidates win the majority, the prelate said it could be considered “a closure to the controversy” surrounding the Arroyo administration.

“If they are clean and honest election we should be able to get the pulse of the masses and their feelings in general about their thinking of the government,” Ledesma said.

“If the administration candidates win the majority in the elections that means the people agreed to them but then again if it’s the majority of the opposition candidates that win that also send a signal,” he stressed.

Errr... what signal, your holiness?

Once again, napaka-vague ng sibahan. And HOPING for clean elections under this administration WITHOUT CREDIBLE REFORMS and a thorough housecleaning within the COMELEC is foolish and naive. It's as if we have never learned our lessons from the 2004 election fiasco.

And as long as those Garci COMELEC officials involved in the dagdag bawas operations + plus Chairman Ben Abalos remain at the COMELEC, magkakaroon pa rin ng dayaan, THAT I GUARANTEE YOU.

The oppositon back in 2004 protested Garcillano and Barcelona's appointment, pero they were ignored by the administration (natch!), CBCP and civil society groups. Now the calls for a credible COMELEC revamp and investigation on the 2004 Gloriagate fraud among the COMELEC officials are being swept under the rug again, and people are asking us to just cross our fingers and hope na this time, there won't be any massive fraud.

Sabi ni MLQ3:

The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines has issued its ritual calls for clean elections. The President immediately embraced the bishops, a tactic she’s perfected since 2005. The problem is that prelates thrive on nuance, which is anathema to politics. So, the bishops look like fools while the Palace goes full speed ahead with confidence-eroding activities like Ebdane’s appointment to Defense.

From the Tribune Editorial:

Not surprisingly, the Catholic bishops came up with yet another “neither here nor there” pastoral statement, which, by comparison, is really no different from the past vague pastoral letters they had been issuing under the Gloria regime.

They spoke of the need for the nation to have credible polls, as the country, so they say, cannot afford another controversial poll exercise that “further aggravates social distrust and helplessness.”

And how do the bishops go about ensuring clean and honest polls? Through the mobilization of the basic ecclesiastical communities in the respective dioceses, they said, as they vowed to be better organized this time around.

In resolving the problem of Gloria Arroyo’s illegitimacy, resulting from the massive electoral fraud in 2004, and to put a closure to this festering problem, the bishops offer a very simplistic solution.

The elections, they intoned, will serve as a referendum on Gloria and her government. If the majority of administration candidates win in the polls, this could be considered as a vote of confidence for Gloria and her government, and would serve as a “closure to the controversy” bedeviling the current administration. If the majority of opposition candidates win, that victory also “sends a signal.”

Signal to what, they naturally did not dare say, since vagueness would allow the same body of bishops later on to claim that there was no massive poll cheating, and that whatever little cheating there was, was largely on the local level. Then, the same body of bishops will tell the nation, “Let us all put a closure to the past controversies and support the Arroyo government, and let us all move forward.


Why then do the Catholic bishops think that the Filipino people will take the results of the polls — should the administration win the majority seats — as a closure to the past controversies surrounding Gloria’s illegitimacy? Because of their say — so in proclaiming that the polls were honest and credible?

They said the same in 2004 and even insisted that there was no massive cheating and that the voice of the sovereign Filipino people was upheld. Besides, to date, even as the same bishops speak of clean and honest polls, never once did they directly admit that there was massive electoral fraud in 2004, even when the evidence shows this charge to be accurate and true.

No, the CBCP has lost it's moral compass and credibility, especially since the supported erap's impeachment but not arroyo's.

Latest on Ed Angara (UPDATED)

I caught this small item from Ernie Maceda:

The defection of Tito Sotto and Tessie Oreta is a victory for Sen. Edgardo Angara, a friend of GMA. Remember that GMA was the guest of honor at Angara’s book launching...


Meanwhile, from the Tribune:

Meanwhile, Angara also yesterday expressed willingness to bury the hatchet with Lacson in the name of having a common ticket for the coming May elections.

“My differences with Lacson, it’s nothing personal. It is more of the issue on principle,” he told reporters.

According to him, what they did not like about Lacson was that his colleague had “betrayed” them during the 2004 presidential elections.

But in a separate interview, Angara stressed he will not be part of the forces of UNO in taking a bid for another six-year term in the chamber or even seek a slot in its 12-man senatorial slate.

“I’m not talking with anyone from UNO to ask for a slot or a place or any other party…Maybe I am not that great to get a slot under any ticket but I have an option if I really want to, and that is an honest option.

“If the third party will succeed in being formed, that would be the middle way and I will run under that slate,” he said, stressing he is not even interested or toying with the idea of asking favors from detained President Joseph Estrada to secure a slot in UNO.

Uh-huh, as if gusto si Angara kunin ng opposition.

Pero buking dito si angara. Angara did seek to be included in the opposition ticket, but the opposition wasn't interested in his candidacy. ito yung usapan ng mga taga opposition recently, based on tatad's open letter:
Tito and Chiz Escudero provided most of the conversation, with Ernie Maceda occasinoally interjecting. mention was made of:

1. Ping Lacson, who has abandoned his earlier decision to run for mayor of Manila and decided instead to seek reelection;
2. Ed Angara, who was reported to be putting [together] a "unity ticket," but in whose behalf Loren Legarda had reportedly telephoned the President for possible inclusion in the Opposition lineup;
3. Manny Villar and his group, which includes Joker Arroyo, Ralph Recto, and Kiko Pangilinan; and
4. Drilon's Liberal Party, which was reported to be pushing for Noynoy Aquino's inclusion in the UNO slate.

No one opposed Lacson's reentry, but no one pushed for Angara's inclusion.

kunwari pa si Angara... lol.

Monday, January 29, 2007

What Iraq would look like without Syria, Iran as neighbors

From Wretchard of the Belmont Club:

Karen Hughes Visits Abu Sayyaf Lair -- The key aide to President Bush visited the island of Jolo and hailed efforts there as a model of for how operations should be conducted elsewhere in the world. ( Reuters)

U.S. special forces are providing intelligence and training to Philippine troops combating the Abu Sayyaf, the country's deadliest Islamic militant group. They are also helping build roads and schools on Jolo, a stronghold of the Abu Sayyaf. ... There was strong security but no sign of the fighting when Hughes was mobbed by hundreds of Muslim schoolchildren waving Philippine and U.S. paper flags after she stepped out of a military helicopter in the port town of Maimbung. "Well, it's very heart-warming to see the warm smiles," she said, when asked whether her reception differed from that in other Muslim societies. U.S. Ambassador Kristie Kenny inaugurated a three-room school building that was built by U.S. soldiers where students learn how to surf the Internet using 10 computers provided by the U.S. Agency for International Development.



Commentary

The substantial accomplishments made in the field are the result of the dedicated efforts of many individual Filipinos and Americans but it would be a travesty to assign the credit for the recent successes against the Islamic insurgency to any particular competence by the Arroyo government. The Reuters article goes out of its way to emphasizes the socio-economic aspects of the counterinsurgency, but the key to development isn't more money. The amount of money that has been allotted to the Autonomous Region For Muslim Mindanao surpasses anything that the non-Muslim regions have received. Development was never stifled by a lack of money but by a lack of supervision. The warlords of the area have never missed an opportunity to pocket the funds for their own private benefit. What the American presence provided was a greater degree of watchfulness on the way funds were spent. If the 3-room schoolbuilding were left to the usual corrupt construction practices instead of being directly built by US soldiers it's a fair bet that not a single nail would have been driven to this day.

All the same it's good to see that Ms. Huges and Ambassador Kenny are out there. God bless them.

Wretch is correct. it's better for the US na sila ang gumastos ng pera nila para sa pagpapatayo ng mga school houses and paggawa ng kalsada kaysa naman ibigay nila ang aid money sa arroyo government na alam naman nating mabilis ibulsa ng mga iilang corrupt gov't officials na yan.

cut out the middle man (rp gov't). let the US gov't spend their own money to help our muslim brothers, para hindi ma-misuse ang aid money nila sa mga kurakot na gov't at military officials.

btw, this is what iraq would have looked like without the terrorists streaming in from iran and syria. buti na lang napapaligiran ng tubig ang mindanao, meaning mahirap makapasok ang jemaah islamiya sa indonesia to RP. by boat pa, which is easier to intercept by the US and RP forces.

I hope it's not too late... Risa Hontiveros Baraquel for Senator?

Okay, so Randy David, one of my favorites, has taken himself out of the Senate race.

I'm a little disappointed. I'm even more disappointed in myself na hindi ko kaagad naisipan ang pangalan na ito, aside from Prof Randy.

Si Risa Hontiveros Baraquel. For Senator. She's smart. she's telegenic. She has charisma. She looks young. She's our generation. And like Randy David, her presence on the Senate will elevate some of the issues that needed to be addressed, like the extra-judicial killings, women's rights etc, education, etc.

Yes, she is Progressive-Lefty-Liberal candidate, but this senate needs somebody as smart and qualified as her, para naman may diversity sa senado natin no?

I'd rather have her than Teddy Casino and Prof. Adel Tamano.

So how about Risa Hontiveros Baraquel for Senator, mssrs. Binay, Villar and Drilon?

Risa Hontiveros factsheet.

Jose Pidal and Morgan Stanley

Lumabas na naman ulit ang issue ng Morgan Stanley accounts ni Jose Pidal sa Hearing ng House Ethics Committee.

Sa hearing ng House Ethics Committee, tinanong ni Alan si Mike Arroyo kung totoo na siya ay classified na Triple A client ng Morgan Stanley, isang investment firm. Kapag Triple Aclient ka, ibig sabihin noon malaki , siguro hindi lang milyon kun di bilyon ang iyong pinahawakan na pera sa kanila para i-invest sa iba’t ibang mapagkaperahan.

Ang sagot ng mayabang na asawa ni Gloria Arroyo, “It’s none of your business.” (Wala kang paki-alam.)

At bakit hindi dapat paki-alaman ng taumbayan? Anong malay natin kung pera ng taumbayan yan.

Kaya nga gusto ni Alan ang waiver o authorization ni Arroyo para sa kanyang mga deposito sa bangko. Kung wala naman talagang tinatagong baho si Mikey Arroyo, dapat hindi siya matakot. At hindi lang sa Germany.

REad the whole thing. yeah, signing the waiver is imporatant kung talagang hindi guilty si Mike Arroyo. If lacson can do it, so should Mike, if he's really that innocent.

As for the Morgan Stanley accounts, meron si Pidal nyan.

From Ducky Paredes on the Lacson "Incredible Hulk" expose:

"(H)ow did a check given to Mike and GMA by Congressman Mark Jimenez get to be deposited in the account of Jose Pidal?"

"But, who is Jose Pidal?

"Initially, our investigation led us to Morgan Stanley, one of the
largest, if not the largest investment houses in the world. Curiously, both Mr. Jose Pidal and Mr. Jose Miguel T. Arroyo are valued clients. They share the same address, the 8th floor of LTA Building. They also have the same financial advisor, Mr. Ronald Gin, Associate Vice-President for Investments of San Francisco, California."

Remember the past.

From Matanglawin, an Ateneo de Manila website in tagalog:

Kay raming pagkakatulad. Pareho ang mailing address ng Unang Ginoo at ni Jose Pidal. Parehong ang ikawalong palapag ng LTA Building sa 118 Perea Street sa Legaspi Village ang ginagamit ng dalawa. Pareho rin ang tagapayo sa pananalapi ng dalawa, si Ronald Gin ng Morgan Stanley. Higit sa lahat, mayroon ding saksing isang talampakan lamang ang layo. Hindi malilimutan ng mga Pilipino ang pahayag ni Clarissa Ocampo noong Impeachment Trial, “I was one foot away, your honor.” Dalawa ang itinuturing na “star” witness ni Lacson. Isa rito si Eugenio “Udong” Mahusay Jr., dating mensahero ni Mike Arroyo at inaanak sa kasal ng mag-asawang Arroyo. Sa isang press conference, sinabi ni Mahusay na nasaksihan niya ang pagpirma
ni G. Arroyo ng pangalang Jose Pidal sa mga tseke. Ayon kay Lacson, “This witness was…only a foot away when he first saw the First Gentleman signing Jose Pidal on checks.”

Remember the Past.

Here's Chapter One of Lacson's expose. Details on the Morgan Stanley account here.

We know that Ignacio "Iggy" Arroyo, FG's brother, later acted as Mike ARroyo fall guy and claimed that he owned the Pidal accounts, including the Morgan Stanley accounts. Neal Cruz had a "Laugh my ass out" moment about that. And he refused to answer any questions by invoking the "Right to Privacy" line.

So Iggy "owned" all those huge Pidal accounts raw, pero ito lang ang taxes na binabayaran iggy boy noong 1996-1999.

PDI: Arroyo brother's income, Pidal account don't jibe

Income taxes paid by First Gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo's brother Ignacio, who claimed he was Jose Pidal, were not commensurate with the amount of money he allegedly kept in banks under that assumed name, Senator Panfilo Lacson said Monday.

In a privilege speech, Lacson, citing Ignacio Arroyo's tax returns, said that in 1996, Ignacio Arroyo paid only 11,205 pesos in income taxes; in 1997, he paid the same amount; in 1998, he paid 13,446 pesos; and in 1999, he paid 8,500 pesos.

Up to 1999, Iggy Arroyo was paying an income tax no more than P8,500. Today, the guy's is worth P284.5 Million.

More here from Lacson's expose:

Looking at his income tax payments alone,this so-called "very,very rich Iggy Arroyo" is an insult to the intelligence of the people:

1996 - P11,205.00
1997 - P11,205.00
1998 - P13,446.00
1999 - P8,500.00

But here's an even greater insult. Poor Iggy earned more than the real Jose Pidal. For in 2001, Atty. Jose Miguel T. Arroyo declared that his annual income, repeat, annual income was all of P30,000. That's P2,500 per month!

That's less than the minimum taxable income required for filing an income tax return. In short, the government actually owes him a P2,000 refund.

Wow Philippines! Bayan pa pala ang may utang sa kanya.

I'm sure most of the employees in this hall pay more taxes than Iggy Arroyo or Mr. Jose Miguel Arroyo/Jose Pidal.

In the Senate hearing, Iggy refused to answer 32 times, reasoning his right to privacy.

Read the whole thing.

NEWSBREAK: San Francisco - The Arroyo's favorite city

UPDATE: "The Erap 11" vs "The Pidal 10"

FPJ aside, what many people are missing as they get fixated on who the opposition bet will be is the emergence of a new bloc of senators along the lines of the much-maligned "Erap 11".

Remember them? These were the 11 senators who voted against the opening of the so-called "second envelope" during the impeachment trial of Joseph Estrada in the Senate in 2001.

Now, we have the "Pidal 10". These are the ten senators, led by Blue Ribbon committee chair Joker Arroyo, who have voted to uphold Ignacio "Iggy" Arroyo's "right to privacy" claim before the Senate investigation on the Jose Pidal accounts. By this decision, the 10 senators are saying that Iggy Arroyo cannot be forced to tell more about the accounts; neither can he be forced to sign the name "Jose Pidal" in front of the committee members.

Never mind that the signatures Iggy had submitted to GMA-7, which the network in turn submitted to the Senate, clearly show that they are not done by the same hand that signed the checks that Panfilo Lacson showed during his exposé.

And who are these ten?

click on the link to find out.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

RPN9's complete 2007 NBA schedule

finally, the nba website updated it's webpage on RPN9.

And here's ESPNStar's NBA sked (almost similar to ours).

This is where your tax-payer/pork barrel money go

Happy birthday, GOVIC!

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Defensor floats Imelda's name on his "Unity Ticket"

to see the public's reaction. Link.

More from the Inquirer, where it says Mike Defensor is also targetting Imelda's children: Defensor starts courting votes in Marcos country

Presidential Chief of staff Michael Defensor, a former leftist activist, said he welcomes the possibility of the entry of the children of former dictator Ferdinand Marcos in a unity ticket under the administration of President Macapagal-Arroyo.

Defensor said reconciling with Edsa 1, 2 and 3 forces is one of the Arroyo administration’s 10-point agenda after she won in the 2004 presidential elections.

He started espousing a unity slate for the administration after declaring his intention to run for senator this year, a move that observers noted would strengthen his bid.

“I see no problem with accommodating the Marcos children in the unity ticket. I know that [the Marcos children] are open about this,” Defensor said during his visit here on Thursday...

Defensor said it was former First Lady Imelda Marcos who advised him to “follow the path of reconciliation” when they met in one occasion.

Hmmm... interesting.

But why is it that whenever Mike Defensor I hear one of Mike defensor's proposals/ideas, ito ang unang pumapasok sa isipan ko?

Mike knows imelda will never be allowed to join arroyo's so called "unity slate." He's just giving Imelda's supporters false hope. But i guess it doesn't hurt to pander and court the Imelda vote. Besides, once Arroyo returns from her trip, she'll reprise her role as "bad cop" to mike D's "good cop", and some of Defensor's crazy ideas will be shelved.

MORE: Oliver Lozano wants to join the "Unity Ticket" too

Who says there are no takers for an administration opposition unity ticket being broached by a key Palace official?

So far, there is one and it is the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan, political party of the late President Ferdinand Marcos. It is negotiating for an alliance with the ruling Lakas Christian-Muslim Democrats, according to lawyer Oliver Lozano, a KBL stalwart.

Lozano offered to run as KBL representative in the unity ticket that was suggested by presidential chief-of-staff Michael Defensor.

In a letter to Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita, Lozano said “there will be no strings attached,” to the Lakas-KBL coalition.

“The unity ticket will be an entry point to the use of the Marcos wealth to fund the infrastructures and other public welfare projects of the government,” he said.

Lozano, better known as a personal lawyer of former First Lady Imelda Romualdez-Marcos, has been a perennial candidate in senatorial elections but has not won any of them.

His plan to run as a “guest candidate” of the administration is bound to raise quizzical eyebrows because he has earned a name for himself as a critic of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

In fact, Lozano twice filed an impeachment complaint against the President—the first in 2004 and the second in 2005. Both impeachment complaints—the first was combined with those lodged by opposition congressmen—were dismissed by the House of Representatives.

UPDATE: If Arroyo wins, will Imelda and Bongbong finally get their wish?

Related:

- The Marcos Restoration
- PCIJ: Did Marcos wealth and taxpayers bankroll GMA campaign?

After all the party-switching, does the Erap-GMA frame still apply?

From the tribune:

As the deadline for the certificates of candidacy for senators nears, both the administration and opposition parties face headaches and problems, with the administration allies rejecting the proposal of Malacañang to take in as its senatorial bets, the two opposition-identified political personalities, former Senators Vicente “Tito” Sotto III and Teresa Aquino-Oreta.

At the same time, reports are swirling that former Sen. John Osmeña, who was already in the United Opposition (UNO) list, is also set to join Sotto and Oreta, along with detained former Sen. Gregorio Honasan in the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC), which is said to be putting up its own senatorial slate for the May polls.

and if the story about john osmena is true. this is the second time he switched to the arroyo admin side. first time was in 2004, nung tumakbo siya sa K4 ni Arroyo as admin senator.

Will Atong Ang do a Reynaldo Berroya?

From Ninez Cacho Olivarez:

It doesn’t take brains to figure out the plea bargain move of accused Charlie “Atong” Ang while implicating detained President Joseph Estrada, an accused in a plunder case. He cut a deal with the Arroyo government that has been desperately trying to pin Estrada on plunder, to gain his freedom, which may come sooner than expected, with a presidential pardon awaiting him.

So will Atong do a "Rey Berroya"?

I remember noong 1998, pinakawalan ni fvr tabako si rey berroya (who was once erap’s deputybat PACC) before the 1998 presidential elections para akusahan si erap of plotting to assasinate FVR at pagiging isang “kidnapping mastermind”.

Friday, January 26, 2007

The Final 12?

According to MLQ3, tatakbo pa raw si Joker sa Senado, so I guess ibabalik ko ang pangalan niya sa listahan ko. Randy David's name is dropped dahil sabi niya ayaw raw niyang tumakbo.

1) Alan Peter Cayetano
2) Chiz Escudero
3) Koko Pimentel
4) Loren Legarda
5) Panfilo Lacson
6) Manny Villar
7) Joker Arroyo
8) Kiko Pangilinan
9) Noynoy Aquino
10) Sonia Roco
11)
12)

now for sotto, oreta and tatad.

Sotto: I want him to take Loi Ejercito's spot instead of JV.
Oreta: I'd rather see her run for a House seat. Besides, Noy Aquino is a better candidate.
Tatad: He's not a strong candidate for the Senate. See my advice for Tessie.

JV Ejercito, Angara, Recto and Adel Tamano.

JV Ejercito: I strongly believe JV should run for mayor again in San Juan. Period.
Angara: Say NO to Angara.
Recto: If I have to choose between him and Angara, i'd choose him to fill the remaining spot.

Adel Tamano: Sayang si Randy david. Pero getting a Muslim candidate is good. He could get the Muslim vote and be the first major nationally elected Muslim representative in quite a while. We need somebody like that especially during these troubled times. he could run as the guy who will build stronger relations with the Christian and Muslim communities.

I only wish that we could find somebody more high profile, because I don't know much about Prof. Tamano. A woman Muslim candidate would be great.

Attention Daily Tribune

may virus (VBS.Soraci) ang mga opinion/editorial webpages nyo for jan 26, 2007. paki ayos naman o.

If people want to read a "clean" version of their OP/EDs today, click here. tested it myself. I used the "Ask Mobile" filter to remove the bad stuff.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

The Bullshitter

That's what I'm calling Mike Defensor, because the first thing that always comes to people's mind is "That's Bullshit" whenever they hear another one of Mike's BS, especially the latest one.

He also claimed that maam arroyo was for supportive of his "free erap" idea (but why doesn't Maam tell the public that herself?) The opposition quickly called his bluff.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Kung natuloy ang "Third Force"

Tama si CVJ:

The proper role of genuine third force proponents at this time is to help ensure the May 2007 elections reflect the will of the voters (whether pro or anti Arroyo), and more importantly, to take action if it does not. That’s is crucial to regaining the credibility that was lost by allying themselves with Arroyo and her status quo. Once purity of intent is proven, then it will have a better chance in 2010.

Agreed.

Pero kung natuloy ang third party slate ng Wednesday Group for selfish reasons, ito ang prediction ko.

Any Third Party group headed by incumbent senators from Wednesday Group + Angara will be viewed as a Stalking Horse. A spoiler.

At kapag nanalo si Arroyo, the Wednesday group will be blamed for letting her win. The Third Force idea will talked about in negative terms in the future. And the Wednesday Group will be held as a prime example of a vote-splitting Trojan Horse for Arroyo.

Anyway, balita ko na lilipat raw si Sotto at Tessie Aquino Oreta sa administrasyon.

Gusto ko sana kasing ipalit si Tito Sotto kay Loi Estrada (who's retiring) dahil okay naman si Sotto nung senador siya at miyembro siya ng traditional opposition. Tessie I think should run for a House seat na lang, instead of switching sides.

My senate 12 would have been:

1) Lacson
2) Sonia Roco
3) Chiz Escudero
4) Alan Peter Cayetano
5) Manny Villar
6) Francis Pangilinan
7) Koko Pimentel
8) Benigno Aquino III
9) Randy David
10) Loren Legarda
11) Tito Sotto
12) ???

Window Dressing

From Rego:

if you realized that the administration is working so hard to improve the economy. And the opposition is hell bent on destroying what ever gains attributable to the efforts being exerted by the administration


i think the opposition/coalition can do a better job then the administration if it abolishes the pork barrel of the tongressman/senators/and malacanang. it reduces corruption, cuz pork barrel funding is one of the most inefficient way of spending our tax money.

i think gov't needs to reduce it's wasteful spending, especially the spending that will be done for partisan purposes during the elections. if we abolish the pork barrel and reduce wasteful spending, we'll be able to give our citizens some tax relief, which in turn will lower the costs of doing business and help encourage entrepreneurs and more foreign investors to do business in our country.

arroyo is not doing that much in reducing corruption and is merely doing the minimum for window dressing purposes. nani is not charged with plunder? give me a break, ombudsgirl. i'm very disappointed na siya lang ang makakasuhan over the 14 mil impsa bribe. what about mark jimenez? what about the "malacanang residents"? i'm underwhelmed. we've already seen the slap on the wrist punishment on gen. carlos garcia.

OTOH, tho opposition coalition, having seen how the past few years after edsa dos were full of broken promises and disappointments, will do a better job in not repeating arroyo's mistakes.

and i must say, hindi naman lahat ng ginagawa ni arroyo ay mali. like having strong relations with the US, which means more foreign aid. and having strong relations with china, which means more business opportunities. i'm sure the opposition will maintain status quo on some of the things arroyo is doing right, while discarding or reforming the things she's not doing right.

(we know marcos was a dictator too and he's an evil guy, pero hindi naman lahat ng ginawa niya ay mali or palpak. it's just that the evil things he did outweigh some of the things he did right. is all.)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Admin and Oppo's line on Third Force

May napansin ako.

Halos lahat ng maka-administration have said na a "third force" party will "fail" because these types have done poorly in the past.

pro-admin's like bel cunanan's ("Third Force Often Ends Up Third"), ben evardone and Emil Jurado have made similar arguments like these. but take note na they're not exactly against a "third force" coming to existence.

Those opposition on the other hand, rightly feared that a "third force" will only split the votes of those who are against arroyo.

So ganito ang dahilan nila:

pro-arroyo's reasons for being "against" third force: it will "fail."

anti-arroyo's reasons for being against third force: it will benefit arroyo.

btw, from malacanang's POV, hindi magiging failure ang third force if it becomes a divisive force for the anti-Arroyo vote during the elections. it may fail in getting enough of it's people elected, but it won't fail in helping arroyo improve her chances of winning.

From MLQ3:

While Billy Esposo seems to suggest the “third force” is, really, a Nacionalista Party-Liberal Party Alliance, in other words, an old-fashioned coalition, doesn’t even seem to be holding. What does the emphasis on the veteran nature of the force, or even the evolution of its reason for being, say about what was originally touted as its reason for being -to provide an alternative? Randy David says running for elected office isn’t for him; there goes one iron-clad reason to consider a third force as an alternative.

Word. The incumbent senators of the Wednesday Group and Angara are now "the alternative"? I'm underwhelmed.

These re-electionists are not "out of the box" alternative choices. They ARE the Box.

And they need Cayetano to bolsher their core members fence-sitting record on Arroyo.

I'll let Lito Banayo take center stage:

The political wet dreamers must realize that all Malacañang needs is a credible reason to cheat the opposition of victory in a clearly opposition year. And by carving up a Third Force, they are actually giving GMA and her Comelec operators the "legal" justification to manufacture the results they want. And so, with their Third Force, guess who would be allowed to win? The malleable re-electionist senators, who will then proceed to toe the Malacañang line of reconciliation, kuno. Minus Lacson. Minus Cayetano whom the Arroyos mow hate with a passion greater than they hate Lacson. Minus Noynoy Aquino, because Tita Cory must be taught a lesson by Doña Gloria. And minus Loren, that "ingrata" who deserted them. In their stead, Comelec will proclaim Miguelito el Defensor and Migs the pretty boy from the Bukidnon wilds. Who knows, they may even get Prospero Pichay to win! And if Pichay can be made to win, why not Chavit?

Monday, January 22, 2007

Why I want Randy David to run

Ito yung dating Magic twelve ko. Since marami sa listahan ko ay confirmed na hindi tatakbo, like Loi, Susan Ople, Guingona, Joker Arroyo.

Joker, Loi not running:

Senate majority leader Francis Pangilinan earlier disclosed there were talks among re-electionist senators to form a line-up independent of the administration and the opposition. This triggered talks of a "Third Force."

Aside from Angara and Pangilinan, other senators eligible for re-election are Manuel Villar, Franklin Drilon, Luisa Ejercito-Estrada, Ralph Recto, Panfilo Lacson, and Joker Arroyo.

Arroyo has said he will not run. Ejercito-Estrada has reportedly decided against running.


Susan Ople not running.

Guingona not running, according to Neal Cruz. He will not run because of his age, but will help in campaigning.

So ito ang bagong slate ko:

1) Lacson
2) Sonia Roco
3) Chiz Escudero
4) Alan Peter Cayetano
5) Manny Villar
6) Francis Pangilinan
7) Koko Pimentel
8) Benigno Aquino III
9) Randy David
10) Loren Legarda
11) ???
12) ???

I really don't know kung sino ang pipiliin ko para sa remaining two slots. Kung may independent, "third force-ish" type of candidate na available diyan, stand up and be counted.

Heh, Pati nga yung National team natin sa basketbol, nahihirapang pumili ng Magic 12 nila:

NATIONAL coach Chot Reyes said he is always open to bring in new players into the national team, but admitted that those who have been working and practicing in the past have an advantage of making the final roster....

Reyes was hoping that the Fiba ban on the Philippines would be lifted and that the country could field a team in the Southeast Asia Basketball Association qualifying tournament for the Fiba Asia Championships in July, which in turn will be the qualifier for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

He said his problem would be picking the final 12.

“This is because it’s a really tough choice,” said Reyes, who also hinted that “some popular names might be left out. We need a team. We need guys who have worked together and who we have seen can work together.”

Yung sa senate twelve naman natin, I want to see a lineup that's united, moderate, competent, diverse, and working together. Because I want my Magic twelve reflect the face of the new government after removing the divisive Arroyo.

Besides, katulad ng sinabi ni MLQ3, halos magkapareho naman "third force" list sa listahan na ina-nounce ng Opposition eh. And I think the list is not yet final.

I think then, it would be a mistake to attribute all opposition, or reservations, to the idea to “pro” Estrada or “pro” Arroyo people. Even the list he mentions isn’t very different from what the traditional opposition has so far announced. Second of all, a third force would be hard put to run a full slate, anyway. Third, my approach is based on asking these questions:

1. Which slate would at least view impeachment with an open mind, or if with a closed one, then at least in favor of a more democratic attitude, which is, to impeach?

2. Which slate would have an interest in defending the rights of the Senate (and the constituency it represents), in the face of uncooperation, hostility, etc. from the executive?

3. Which slate would be in a good position to derail any future mischief concerning the constitution?

Obviously, on all three counts, any administration slate would be disqualified: it would acquit the President at all costs, if there was an impeachment. It would roll over, die, or wag its tail in the face of executive efforts to ignore the Senate or bend it to its will; and it would participate gladly in efforts to amend the Constitution to build a one-party, unicameral, parliament.

All I know is that the list should have "Third Force" type qualities, and should be inclusive. Second, dapat isang MAJOR Opposition Senate slate lang ang itatapat natin laban sa mga kampon ni ARroyo. But I don't mind if there are small independent or third party types who want to form their own Senate slates if they want.

Third, let's not use the "Third Force" or "United Opposition" name sa senate slate natin. I suggest the name "Unity Coalition". Simple, yet catchy.

Anyway, let talk about Randy David. Bakit ko gusto siyang tumakbo bilang senador? Because I think his candidacy will be good for this country. I think he has a better chance than his colleague and fellow UP professor Winnie Monsod in gaining a seat.

Professor David is a man of the Left. But he's also one of the most respected person in this country. If he runs, he will raise the quality of the debates re Arroyo, extra-judicial killings and other issues. If he wins, he will raise the quality of the Senate to an even greater level than before.

And even though Randy David is past 50 yrs. old, I think young people, especially college students think Prof. David is cooler than Mike Defensor and "crocodile tears" CON-ASSER Miguel Zubiri... COMBINED! Randy David's candidacy will energize the entire UP community and students, and candidate Randy David will get plenty of help from student activists and idealists and other student organizations.

I don't care what people say about Randy David's chances of winning. I don't care what the "realists" say. I BELIEVE!

I hope people, especially his friends and colleagues at UP, can convince him to run for the SEnate. I hope Drilon, Binay and Villar can convince Prof. David to run.

Sir Randy, your country needs you. Sana i-consider mo ito.

UPDATE: Uh oh. From Randy David:

Should you run just because you have a good chance of winning? This is not a political question but an ethical one, says the great political theorist Max Weber: “What kind of a man must one be if he is to be allowed to put his hand on the wheel of history?” I ask myself this question whenever well-meaning friends prod me to take up a political career and cash in on the public visibility I acquired in the course of my stint on television.

They tell me: You have the right kind of training, you have progressive values and a deep love for country, and people know you. Then comes the clincher: it is your duty to run. Coming from trusted friends, these words are sweet and heart-warming. But they cannot substitute for the kind of soul-searching that Weber prescribes to anyone considering a career in politics. I am convinced that politics is not my vocation.

I won't take no for an for an answer. People close to him should try harder.

“What if I win?” asks the veteran actor Dolphy in reply to those who nudge him to spin off his long and outstanding film career into a political one. He is not only being practical; he is being ethical. In his heart he must know that, try as he may, he will not be able to do justice to the power that the public is going to entrust to him if he asks for it. Dolphy knows his limits—that, to me, is wisdom and responsibility.

If you win sir, it will be good for the country and your underdog win will be one of the best feel-good stories of the year. But even if you don't win, your participation will help bring focus to the issues that needed to be addressed.

UPDATE: Tignan mo yung reaction ni Oliver ngayon sa senate slate ng opposition, at dati.

There were no violent reactions from him nung unang lumabas ang listahan ng opposition coalition. But ever since the bullshitter Mike Defensor started talking about this being about ERap and GMA, nataranta na si Oliver.

Cuz it's not even a real Erap-GMA contest. Siguro kung snap elections ito between GMA and erap, pwede pa.

But the Estrada camp, reacting to talks of this being a proxy fight between himself and Mrs. Arroyo, reportedly laughed this off, pointing out that if it is “a real fight” that Malacañang wants, then all that is needed is for Mrs. Arroyo to call for snap presidential elections, and both will run to settle the legitimacy issue once and for all.

Estrada was quoted as saying the need not even go out and But campaign, as he would do it from his resthouse in Tanay, Rizal.

The former president was reported to have said that such an election between the two of them would settle once and for all the legitimacy issue hounding Mrs. Arroyo.

Besides, i didn't hear the same amount of hysterical protests when kuya manuel suggested na erap should run for Senator a few months ago (the title of his article got an initial WTF response from me). But even DJB even seconded MLQ3's proposal.

Eto yung reaction ko.

MALAYA editorial today got it right: Referendum on Gloria administration

I suggest the name "Unity Coalition"

Let's not use the "Third Force" or "United Opposition" name sa senate slate natin. I suggest a new name: the "Unity Coalition"

Get it done Binay, Villar, Drilon and company!

UPDATE: Unity, because we want to unite the country post-Arroyo.

Unity, because what you see is a diverse group of people, some of them once worked with Arroyo, others with the previous erap administration. And most of them are moderates (from both sides).

I removed the "Opposition" label because we're not just here to oppose ARroyo. We are going to change the culture of corruption and abuse (CON ASS, the attempt to Abolish the senate) in Congress and in Malacanang if our candidates are given the opportunity to serve.

Maybe Dean Jorge Bocobo should read this too

Here's Rina Jimenez-David's latest article: Respect and contempt

FILIPINOS who love their country: Read this and weep.

The Agence France-Presse reports that US military authorities in South Korea have apologized “over the alleged rape of a 67-year-old local woman by a US soldier, saying the case was ‘an affront’ to all servicemen.” The apology was issued by Maj. Gen. John Morgan, the acting US 8th Army commander, hours after South Korean police arrested a 23-year-old American soldier for allegedly raping and beating the woman in an alley in Seoul.

Morgan, in a statement posted on the US military website, said the case “tainted the reputation of US soldiers,” with the general adding that he deeply regrets and personally apologizes for the “terrible incident that has resulted in grave injury to a Korean civilian.”

Not only that, the soldier, who has yet to stand trial, has been transferred from police custody to prison, with a South Korean judge approving Tuesday a police request for his transfer to South Korean prison facilities. The news report said “no formal charges have been laid yet.”

I hate to stress the obvious, but it seems Filipino officials need to have their faces rubbed into the obvious. Contrast the quick apology on the part of the Americans, and the decisiveness of South Korean authorities in taking custody of a serviceman who remains at this time a “suspect,” with the silence and even support of the US Embassy officials in Manila for convicted rapist Daniel Smith, as well as the abject surrender of sovereignty by Filipino officials in the case.

It gets worse. American military authorities have not only not apologized for the rape of “Nicole,” even after Smith’s conviction by a local court, they even flexed their superior military muscles and threatened to cancel joint military exercises with Philippine troops if Smith was not turned over to the US Embassy.

And the Philippine government? It not only sided with the US Embassy in its interpretation of the Philippine-US Visiting Forces Agreement, it even sought to bamboozle Judge Benjamin Pozon into releasing Smith and, failing that, thumbed its nose at the judiciary by sneaking out Smith in the dead of night in defiance of an ongoing hearing in the Court of Appeals.

* * *

IF anyone should ask why the Americans treat the South Koreans with so much respect, and Filipinos with nothing but contempt, we need only look at the contrasting behavior and attitudes of the two “host” governments.

While the South Koreans immediately moved to arrest the suspect and hold him in captivity, Filipino officials first tried to lose the rape case and impugn the victim, and then -- frustrated by Judge Pozon’s decision -- bent over backwards to do the Americans’ bidding. Where would Smith be, we must ask, if he had raped a South Korean instead of a Filipina?

Certainly, not in his quarters inside the Embassy building, form where -- so the latest news goes -- Smith will be temporarily moved to a converted container van inside the Embassy compound. Rusty or not, a converted container van sitting out in the open is still far less secure than a guarded building. If the US Embassy needs to remodel its premises, what’s to stop officials from temporarily turning over Smith to Philippine authorities who can house him in much more secure quarters -- the National Penitentiary is my suggestion, as this is where convicted criminals are usually remanded.

* * *

THERE is another reason the United States was so quick to apologize to the people of South Korea and expressed willingness to “cooperate fully” with the local authorities.

It turns out that the alleged crime took place at a “sensitive time,” with “Washington seeking help from Seoul to consolidate and relocate American military bases in South Korea by 2008.”

The South Korean defense ministry has already said it would not be able to complete the relocation but gave no new date for its completion, saying the delay has been caused by protests by local residents whose land has been taken over. There has also been a dispute over how to share the costs, estimated at over $10 billion.

There has been an American military presence in South Korea since the armistice that ended the Korean War, almost 60 years ago. At present, some 29,000 US troops are based there.

With North Korea detonating a nuclear device and threatening the “balance of power” in Asia, American authorities may also feel maintaining their presence in the South is crucial. That may explain why mollifying Korean sentiments about the rape and assault was considered a priority.


RELATED: Bush promises "absolute justice" on Iraq Rape case

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Leftist Samar prof killed inside

Another Lefty killed:

A UNIVERSITY professor was gunned down at 3:30 pm yesterday inside his classroom at the University of Eastern Philippines in Catarman, Northern Samar.

The human rights group Karapatan said Jose Maria Sui, also chairman of the university-based anti-corruption network called Act-Now, was shot dead by an unidentified assailant while supervising an examination.

Karapatan said Sui, also former secretary general of the group Katungod, is the 820th victim of political killing since President Arroyo assumed office in 2001.

Katrina Castillo, secretary general of Katungod, which is a local chapter of Karapatan, said Sui died on the spot from gunshot wounds in the head and chest.

She said the gunman was about four meters away from the victim when he opened fire.

The assailant, who was on a motorcycle, was able to enter the classroom as the university has an open campus, she said.

Castillo said Maj. Gen. (ret.) Jovito Palparan, during his stint in Samar in 2004, conducted a "smear campaign" against Sui by tagging him as a ranking member of the New People’s Army.

"If by six o'clock this morning you haven't given us the resignation letter, we will storm the gates of Malacañang!"

BUMPING THIS UP AGAIN

Mukhang handa si Mike Arroyo noong 2001 na makipagpatayan para lang matanggal si Erap by recruiting factions of the military to fight erap and any military that remained loyal to him. Nakakatakot pala itong ambisyosong Big Man na ito.

Anyway, here's Mike Arroyo in his own words, from an old Ellen Tordesillas article on Mike Arroyo's March 5, 2001 interview with Nick Joaquin.

Credit should go to Mike Arroyo

THIS is a season of remembering those exhilarating days in January last year when Joseph Estrada, accused of betraying the trust of the Filipino people who elected him president, was ousted three years and five months short of his term.

Believing in giving credit to where credit is due, we are reprinting here again excerpts of the interview with Mike Arroyo by the eminent Nick Joaquin on his role in the ouster of Estrada, which paved the way for his wife's takeover of the presidency. The interview appeared in the March 5, 2001 issue of Philippine Graphic.

"She had really left the Cabinet at the right moment: the timing was perfect. If she had tarried a moment longer, she would have been too late for EDSA: she would have made it there as an opportunist. And as for the ill-feeling in Metro Manila, we tackled that by going back to the door-to-door campaign: she went from barangay to barangay explaining her motives, outlining her program. And it worked. Then came the impeachment trial, and from there, tuloy-tuloy na.

"There was a time honestly, when I felt I erred in advising her to resign from the Cabinet. The masa in Manila apparently wanted her to stick it out with Erap. And when she started attacking him, everything fell on us - grabe!- everything! But I told myself: it's now or never; if we lose here we're totally destroyed and it's goodbye to her political career - but if we win here, she becomes President! So we really fought.

"We got all those Erap tapes from Ramon Jacinto and distributed them all over. We bought one million and a half million copies of Pinoy Times to give away so the public could read about the Erap mansions and bank accounts.

"And when EDSA happened, we texted everybody to go running there. EDSA, EDSA: everybody converge on EDSA! Panalo kung panalo. Patay kung patay! Jinggoy had already announced what they would do to us if they won.

"Chavit Singson had Plan B involving elements of the military to strike the first blow. They would kindle the spark by withdrawing from the government, and one by one others would follow: Class '71 would also withdraw, then Class '72, and so forth. But General de Villa warned that the timing had to be precise because one untimely move against the government and the military would automatically defend it. The move must be made at what De Villa called a 'defining moment.'

"You see, General De Villa had his Plan A, which was better than ours, because his was focused on the Chief of Staff and the Service Commanders. At past one o'clock p.m. January 20, Chief of Staff Angelo Reyes defected but we knew that already the night before, when negotiations had lasted until the small hours. By past 2 a.m. we knew Reyes had been convinced to join. His only condition was: Show us a million people on EDSA so it will b easier to bring in the service commanders.

"And they asked when the crowd was thickest; we told them: from three to five in the afternoon. So they agreed to come to EDSA at around that time. But while hiding in their safehouse, they got reports that General Calimlim could not be located and their first thought was: "He's out looking for us!" So they decided to rush to EDSA right away. When they got there, why there too at the Shrine was Calimlim! He had been looking for them all right, but join to join them, not to arrest them!

"Our group there was a back-up strike force. In fact, it was our group that won over to our side the PNP first. If Panfilo Lacson had resisted, he and his men would have been repelled: there would have been bloodshed, but not on EDSA. In every place where Erap loyalists had a force, we had a counter-force to face it, with orders to shoot. And not only in Metro Manila. Carillo had already been sent to the provinces; and in Nueva Ecija, for instance, we had Rabosa. This was a fight to the finish. That's why those five days that Erap was demanding were so important. He was counting on counter-coups and baliktaran.

"I was negotiating with Pardo up to three o'clock in the morning: niloloko lang pala kami. But I told him point-blank: "If by six o'clock this morning you haven't given us the resignation letter, we will storm the gates of Malacañang!' But they insisted on more talk: with De Villa up front, and my back channel debate with Pardo, which even became a three-way contest, with Buboy Virata pitching in.

"But the threat to march to Malacañang was for real. And so was the danger of bloodshed. I wasn't telling Gloria everything: I didn't want her alarmed. So she didn't know about the orders to shoot."

Mike didn't want her alarmed? Awww... how nice.

Calling Defensor's Bluff

The Opposition called Mike Defensor's bluff (with ARroyo's blessing), and raised the stakes.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Don't fall for the stupid GMA-Erap trap

Why is it na whenever somebody from the administration side floats the idea of "freeing Erap" or "reconcilation" with the Erap camp, tahimik lang ang mga taga civil society (both pro- and anti- Arroyo).

OTOH, if there's even a hint from the "pro-Erap" camp re "freeing erap", magwawala kaagad ang mga ito.

May pagka-double standard at hypocrisy rin dito ano?

Anyway, napansin ko itong si iloilo city boy:

If there is no "third force," people will be forced to choose between senatorial candidates who are either pro-GMA (pro-Cha Cha, anti impeachment, etc.) or pro-Erap (pro-impeachment, work to free Estrada).

So being pro-impeachment means being pro-Erap too? No offense, but that's just dumb. If everybody who's considered a "pro-impeachment" candidate can also be tarred as "pro-Erap", then i guess oliver won't be voting for any "pro-impeachment" senators anytime soon, no? Which obviously makes arroyo happy (and the Wednesday group too, since they've been fence-sitting on the Arroyo issue for as long as I can remember.)

And the "pro-Erap" senators may "work to free erap". Ooohhh... that's scary. But it's silly to pick on the "pro-eraps" because most of the talk about "freeing erap" have come from the administration side, obviously to pander to erap's masa supporters. Whether it's a CON ASS pusher like Jaraula, or a bullshitter like Mike Defensor, or Lito Atienza and a bunch of businessmen, or Manny Villar.

Without an alternative "third choice," the internecine GMA-Erap warfare will continue up to 2010 and beyond. Our country will never be able to put closure and get out of the rut. A "third force" victory at the polls will send a clear message to pro-GMA and pro-Erap forces: people are already tired of your poisoned politics!


Who says it's a GMA-Erap fight? I think you're living in the past, Oliver. Erap's in jail for almost six years now, surely it's not erap's fault anymore that our country's still a mess. And you know and I know that he's already politically done--meaning the likelihood of a comeback or a restoration is nil-- even though he's still more popular than Arroyo.

Erap is done. Period. That leaves us with Arroyo. The last woman standing. You put her there, what are you going to do now to rectify THAT problem? Will the Third Force party headed by Joker, Angara and Recto really get rid of Arroyo (via impeachment) if they win? Or only maintain status quo? That's what I want to know.

Will they do the right thing and impeach this phony president, and remove the most divisive force in politics today? Or are they just gonna keep claiming na they're not "pro-arroyo" and not "pro-erap" and hope they fool everybody?

(I don't think erap is as divisive. Else, why would some admin officials even call for erap's release and not suffer any backlash from civil society? if villar, drilon, sonia roco, angelo reyes, loren legarda, guingona thinks it's okay to meet or reconcile with Erap, maybe wala na yung galit nila sa kanya dati?)

Like for example, what is sen. joker arroyo's position on "hello garci" anyway? Does he believe na arroyo and garci rigged the elections? Para kasing hindi ko maalala yung sagot nya sa isyung yon eh. Can anybody recall if he has ever asked for Arroyo's resignation too, because of the Garcigate?

Sorry guys, but I'm a unapologetically one-issue voter here. Between a qualified anti-Arroyo candidate and a qualified Administration candidate, I'll choose the qualified anti-Arroyo candidate. I'll choose the best, most qualified, anti-aRroyo candidate available (whether from Erap camp, the Roco camp, the Civil society camp, or any other independent, third partyish type candidates).

GMA is the issue here, not Erap. Erap is sooo 2001. I'm not falling for the stupid trap na this is a GMA-Erap fight.

More from Lito Banayo.

It’s downright silly to talk of the May elections as a proxy war between Gloria and Erap.

Hey guys, Erap has been out of power for six years to this day. In fact by April 25 this year, three weeks before Election Day, he shall have been detained for six years too. And in all of these years, this benighted land has been led by one woman, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who, by the grace of the late Cardinal Jaime Sin, the legal imprimatur of Hilario Davide and the Supreme Court, the mutiny of then AFP chief Angelo Reyes, and the witting or unwitting consent of some hundred thousand or two of the elite, their employees, and students of elite schools, became president of the Republic.

In 2004, three years and four months after her ascent to conspiratorially-stolen power, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo "won" election this time through the grace of Garcillano, the financial legerdemain of Joc Joc Bolante and the Pinedas, the legal imprimatur of the 12th Congress and Comelec, and the conscription to illegal election "duty" of the generals of the military and the police.

So stop beating Erap who has been languishing in detention these six years, and start beating Gloria who has made life so miserable for the teeming millions of this benighted land. To frame the coming mid-term elections as an Erap-Gloria war is to keep living in the past.

Preach it man, preach it!

I'll write more about the "Third Force" option tomorrow.

UPDATE: If people want to see what a REAL GMA-Erap contest looks like. Call a snap elections.

But the Estrada camp, reacting to talks of this being a proxy fight between himself and Mrs. Arroyo, reportedly laughed this off, pointing out that if it is “a real fight” that Malacañang wants, then all that is needed is for Mrs. Arroyo to call for snap presidential elections, and both will run to settle the legitimacy issue once and for all.

Estrada was quoted as saying the need not even go out and But campaign, as he would do it from his resthouse in Tanay, Rizal.

The former president was reported to have said that such an election between the two of them would settle once and for all the legitimacy issue hounding Mrs. Arroyo.

Because there are SOOOO many people who want to turn the midterm elections into an ERAP and GMA, which again is silly.

The Good Edsa

May bagong post si Kuya Dean Jorge Bocobo.: Not Even The End Can Justify People Power As A Means

I agree with Dean na "People Power" can be harmful, if it is used as a shortcut to oust a democratically elected president, instead of using the constitutional means available, like elections and impeachment. These are the same arguments Bong Austero and Winnie Monsod have used in the past to defend Arroyo and discourage People Power against her regime.

Pero pwedeng gamiting ang People Power kontra diktadura, para ibalik ang demokrasya sa ating bansa. Pwede rin itong gamitin kung garapalan ang nakawan ng eleksyon (at coverup nito), katulad ng nangyari sa panahon ni Marcos-Cory Snap Election noong 1986, o yung Orange Revolution ng Ukraine noong 2004, nung may dayaan rin sa eleksyon nila. Because stealing elections goes against every democratic principles we believe in.

Me, I always refer to the People's Revolution in 1986 as "The Good Edsa."

Ngayon, focus naman tayo sa reaction ni Kuya Manuel. Sabi nya.

And People Power as a political concept was developed through the “parliament of the streets” in the pre- and post-Ninoy assassination period. The result was People Power as we presently understand it: a non-violent effort at regime change.

That change was accomplished in 1986, totally, and partially in 2001. The problem to my mind is that what took place in 2001 was not allowed to reach its logical conclusion: which was the fall of the existing constitutional order. With Marcos’s fall in 1986 came the fall of the constitutional order he’d manufactured; with Estrada’s fall should have come the fall of the constitutional order born in 1987 but which had failed by the impeachment walkout.

Instead -and this is where Cardinal Sin and Cory Aquino and so on will end up being judged by posterity- the great division between the ranks of the Center and the Left, with the Center preferring a constitutional handover (what Philippine Commentary calls a coup d’etat) and the Left and Left-leaning preferring a march on the presidential palace, resulted in the Supreme Court intervening.

I believe Cory and Sin were trying to do what they think was best at that time. But I don't think they knew the whole picture (what was going on behind the scenes). The left hand didn't know what the right hand was doing.

And it's not the threat of the Left marching to the palace that worried many people. The police and military still loyal to Erap's government would have been able to manage them.

It was the Rightwing military strike forces of Mike Arroyo and Chavit Singson that probably worried Malacanang even more at that time. It's the thought of military-on-military violence, with civilians caught in the crossfire, that got many people justifiably scared.

"Chavit Singson had Plan B involving elements of the military to strike the first blow. They would kindle the spark by withdrawing from the government, and one by one others would follow: Class '71 would also withdraw, then Class '72, and so forth. But General de Villa warned that the timing had to be precise because one untimely move against the government and the military would automatically defend it. The move must be made at what De Villa called a 'defining moment.'

"You see, General De Villa had his Plan A, which was better than ours, because his was focused on the Chief of Staff and the Service Commanders. At past one o'clock p.m. January 20, Chief of Staff Angelo Reyes defected but we knew that already the night before, when negotiations had lasted until the small hours. By past 2 a.m. we knew Reyes had been convinced to join. His only condition was: Show us a million people on EDSA so it will be easier to bring in the service commanders...

"Our group there was a back-up strike force. In fact, it was our group that won over to our side the PNP first. If Panfilo Lacson had resisted, he and his men would have been repelled: there would have been bloodshed, but not on EDSA. In every place where Erap loyalists had a force, we had a counter-force to face it, with orders to shoot. And not only in Metro Manila. Carillo had already been sent to the provinces; and in Nueva Ecija, for instance, we had Rabosa. This was a fight to the finish...

"I was negotiating with Pardo up to three o'clock in the morning: niloloko lang pala kami. But I told him point-blank: "If by six o'clock this morning you haven't given us the resignation letter, we will storm the gates of Malacañang!' But they insisted on more talk: with De Villa up front, and my back channel debate with Pardo, which even became a three-way contest, with Buboy Virata pitching in.

"But the threat to march to Malacañang was for real. And so was the danger of bloodshed. I wasn't telling Gloria everything: I didn't want her alarmed. So she didn't know about the orders to shoot."

"But they insisted on more talk..." And orders to shoot? Hmmm... may baril bang dala ang mga Bayan Muna at Akbayan activists?

More from MLQ3:

We cannot tell if those whom I witnessed march on the Palace on that January day, would have forced Estrada to bow to public pressure and explicitly resign, or if there would have been a bloodbath and perhaps the first lynching of a president in our history; or if the middle forces at the Edsa Shrine would have melted away soon after or even if both anti-Estrada forces would have reunited for a protracted campaign, or if reinforcements from the provinces would have arrived, to plunge the country into Civil War. All we know is that these possibilities entered the minds of Cory, the Cardinal, the Chief Justice, even the military, with or without whispering from the Wormtongues in the then-Vice President’s camp.


There are multiple what-if possibilities. Let's focus on one: say there was violence, Erap, Jinggoy were lynched and hanged. Ping was captured and executed by Mike Arroyo's strike force.

So hindi na "people power" talaga ang Edsa Dos kundi isang military-civilian coup. Totally unlike the First Edsa in every way, shape and form. It's also precedent-setting. Pwede na palang gawin ito.

Of course, Maam Arroyo promised that this Edsa will usher in a new kind of government, one based on fighting corruption, unity and healing, good governance, and morality... NOT!

First day of office, after Edsa Dos, IMPSA kaagad ang nasa isip ng mga kumag na ito. And the gov't was wracked by numerous corruption scandals ever since. FPJ ran for the presidency in 2004, along with an ailing Raul Roco, pero ninakaw ni Arroyo at Garci ang election, just like Marcos did with Cory.

So ever since that time, Arroyo has been fending off attempts to do to her what they did to erap-- from the military/former civil society allies, from the Left and from erap supporters. Cycle of violence. Because people finally realized that elections under her corrupt amoral admin are meaningless and "democracy" is a farce.

UPDATE: Freedom House: Philippines "Partly Free"

Sabi ni MLQ3: "Courtesy of Publius Pundit comes news of Freedom House’s latest rankings of the freedoms of nations around the world. While the country’s rating (”partly free”) remains unchanged from last year, our levels of freedom, according to the group, show a “modest but ominous” decline, and thus represent a “Downward trend arrow due to a spate of political killings specifically targeting leftwing political activists”. The report says,

Although the factors contributing to freedom’s decline in the region varied from country to country, ethnic and religious division stood out as a major problem in some countries—Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and Fiji—and a potential source of discontent in others, including Indonesia, which retained its designation as Free. Perhaps the most disquieting aspect of the year’s developments is the fact that three countries previously considered showcases of Asian freedom—Thailand, the Philippines, and East Timor—experienced considerable setbacks.


Our Economy is "less free" rin, according to the Heritage Foundation. The Tribune Editorial comments.

Just as Gloria Arroyo’s ego was about to soar outside the solar system due to the hosting of Asian leaders in Cebu, an event which she bragged was proof of the country’s world-class reputation, in came the Heritage Foundation’s assessment on the economy under its annual Index of Economic Freedom.

If anything, the annual report would have hit like a guided missile scoring a direct hit to bring Glo’s feet back to terra firma.

The report, which provided a realistic view of the economy, placed the country well out of view of the supposed Second World that Gloria loves to brag as the place where the Philippines now belongs.

Instead, it painted a picture of the economy stagnating after Gloria took over the helm of government in 2001.

The Philippines was placed 97th out of some 157 countries in the annual survey with the economy rating 57.4 percent, or a classification of mostly unfree by the conservative US think tank.

.....
Mediocrity was not always the case for the local economy under the Heritage Foundation index that started in 1995.

In the year 2000, under President Joseph Estrada, the economy was last rated as moderately free with a rating of 62.2 percent.

It was also ranked moderately free in 1999 with a 61.9 percent rating, 1998, 63.8 percent; and 1997, 60.8 percent.

The economy achieved its lowest-ever rating of 53.3 percent, which is close to a classification of repressed under the index, in 2005 under, of course, Gloria.


The Philippines had a constant poor showing in the annual index under Gloria, with all years falling under the mostly unfree classification.

In 2001, after the forcible Edsa coup, the economy was rated 57.9 percent; in 2002, it was 58.4 percent; 59 percent in 2003; 56.7 percent in 2004; 53.3 percent in 2005; 57.5 percent in 2006 and 57.4 percent last year.

What drags the economy under Gloria is mostly corruption, based on the survey, where the Philippines rated a humiliating 25 percent.


UNIFFORS: "Following the suspension of a host of elected officials, Gabriel Claudio, presidential adviser on political affairs, said, “What political harassment are they talking about? Two of the suspended governors are members of the administration coalition. Politically, we are aggrieved and disadvantaged by these suspensions.” Claudio speaks with forked tongue."

Read the whole thing. And this too.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

(UPDATE) Can we trust the Wednesday Group?

I'm having serious doubts now after reading Lito Banayo's article. And judging from the Wednesday group's recent statements about "third farce", hmmmm.... ya gatta wonder.

UPDATE: ON THE OTHER HAND, is Lito Banayo even still with the opposition? that is the question.

Article #1: Sabi ni Ducky Paredes:

Congressman Rudy Bacani has been forced to become a candidate for Mayor of Manila. He is among the many associates and advisers of Senator Ping Lacson who were dumbfounded by the Senator’s decision not to make a run for Manila’s City Hall.

I am told that Ping’s lame-brained excuse that he might be disqualified on the point of residency (he lives in Cavite) was just not so. He has actually been a registered resident of Manila for almost a year now.
Several of his close associates and advisers are miffed at Ping for not letting them know of his sudden change-of-mind before he announced this to the general public.

Among the most flabbergasted was Congressman Rudy, whose term in Congress ends in June and who had already committed himself to running as Ping’s vice mayor. With Ping out of the race, Rudy Bacani had to throw in his hat in the run for mayor, No one runs for vice mayor without a mayoralty candidate!

As for Ping’s former political advisers, most of them will not have anything to do with the Senator anymore. No one likes helping someone who will keep one in the dark about what his plans are. It is insulting to be treated in this manner.

As one who has been following Ping Lacson's career, I know that Lito Banayo is one of Ping Lacson's closest advisers. Is he one of those who doesn't want anything to do with Ping anymore? He seemed upset and disappointed about Ping's sudden announcement withdrawing his candidacy.

Article #2: Manila Mayor Lito Atienza and Mike defensor are also good friends of his.

The latest revival of the reconciliation call coming from the GMA camp, or a portion of it, sounds hollow because it is shallow.

To be fair to its chief proponents, my good friend Mayor Lito Atienza and friend Mike Defensor, they are being consistent in calling for the release of President Estrada from his detention....

Mike Defensor has always been a voice in favor of political accommodation. While many think his current revival of the reconciliation call is a mere gimmick to somehow endear him to Erap’s masa, and somehow erase his close association with a leader who after getting a supposed mandate in 2004 has consistently been suffering from negative approval ratings, I would like to give Mike the benefit of the doubt. There is a basically good heart beating beneath Mike’s breast, even if many times I have berated him in this space.

Many times in the past, Banayo did attack Defensor for his katarantaduhans. But did banayo have a change of heart with defensor after the Ping's Manila race dropout? did defensor and atienza reach out to their old friend Lito B.? Possible.

And this is interesting too.

In much the same way that the FPJ supporters are asking Senator Kiko Pangilinan to apologize for having chorused "Noted" together with Raul Gonzales in the congressional canvass of 2004, before they withdraw their objection to his inclusion in the winning slate, perhaps all Mike should do is apologize to the people for trusting a leader who he now realizes, even belatedly, to be untrustworthy. Ready for that, Mike?

I don't know if Defensor is just bullshitting Banayo and telling him what he wants to hear, but if what Mike said is true, HA HA HA HA HA HA!

HA HA HA HA HA HA HAHA HAAHHA HHAHHA HAHAHAHAHAHAH...

NYAHAHAH HAAHHA HAHAHAHAH HAHAHAH...

BWAWAHAHA HAHAH HAHAHA....

Now, to this "Third Farce" article by Lito Banayo. He says he has a source inside Malacanang.

My mole in the palace who has always told me correct information in the past, says the idea is to "kill" the Erap-led "unity" ticket before it is even born. A third force composed of heavyweights will be billed as the "principled alternative", guys who were mostly at Edsa Dos, and even those who were with the fallen president but who have had a "change of heart".

I am 95% certain that the "mole" of Lito Banayo is Mike Defensor. So when you read, Lito's Third Farce article again, think of this caveat. I am not saying the article is total misinformation. But I also don't think the article is complete truth, because of the source. I'm sure Defensor did some spinning of his own to his friend Lito.

Now, as to Lito Banayo's status. Is he still with Ping? Probably not anymore. Is he now with the Administration? No. I think he's still with the Oppo, but I believe he has recently renewed his friendships with Mike Defensor and Lito Atienza and have shared information with each other.

Anyway, the question everybody wants to ask is: Did Maam Arroyo approve of these leaks, Mr. Defensor? Does Maam even know about THE LEAKS THE LEAKS!!!

Know your Enemy

From the Malaya Editorial:

The military has expressed support for national security adviser Norberto Gonzales call on voters to throw out party-list representatives in the House in the May elections. So this is what the ballyhooed "reformed, apolitical" Armed Forces has turned itself into? A Red baiter like the Partido Demokratiko Sosyalista ng Pilipinas of Gonzales and Romeo Intengan, that Jesuit throwback to the Cold War?

We know where Gonzales is coming from when he calls on voters to reject party-list groups which he suspects of serving as "fronts" of the Communist Party of the Philippines. This is not the first time he is campaigning against Leftist party-list groups. And this will not be the first time either that he will likely be spurned by the voters.

His PDSP has not won a single party-list seat. It will likely not win a seat this time around either. Which simply goes to show an anti-Red platform won’t fly in elections.

The AFP, however, is not a political party like the PDSP. It enjoys a monopoly of state violence. It has no business telling people whom to vote for or against when they go to the polling places.

And just to enlighten the AFP leadership, advocating communism of whatever variant is not a crime. R.A.1600, the Anti-Subversion Law, was repealed way back to the time of President Fidel V. Ramos. The idea is to precisely entice supporters of the communist movement to make their pitch for their political program in the open, specifically via the electoral process.

Gonzales, of course, claims that Leftist party-groups directly support the communist rebellion, citing the alleged diversion of their representatives’ pork barrel to the New People’s Army. The Commission on Audit has not reported any such diversion. And even if Gonzales is right, the proper action is to charge the suspected party-list lawmaker with rebellion.


That indeed was resorted to by the State when it charged Rep. Crispin Beltran. Even a cursory look at the charges, however, will show the case against Beltran is based on suppositions, conjectures and speculations. Not a shred of hard evidence.

pinag-iinitan na naman ang mga Bayan Muna at Akbayan ng AFP. Read this too.

And Crispin Beltran was arrested for a 21-year old charge of "inciting to rebellion" from the Marcos era. :rolleyes:

Beware of the "Third Farce" party

I already knew the "Third Force" concept being proposed by Sen. Noted and Ralph Recto was a bad idea even before reading this Lito Banayo article.

All I can say at this point is NO TO THIRD FORCE. A third force concept may be nice at some other time, but not this election.

Two re-electionist senators, I am reliably told, are "open" to negotiations being instigated by backroom workers from the stinking palace beside the stinking river. The deal proposed by the "bright" boys to the two is this: Run a "third force" composed of mostly re-electionist senators, plus civil society leaders who would be bumped off in a proposed united opposition ticket, or who for reasons of their own, "detest" being in an Erap-endorsed line-up. The Palace, that munificent bounty of "goodies," will bankroll all the expenses.

The two have been secretly button-holing their colleagues. A "third force" composed of six re-electionist senators, three youthful congressmen, two balik-senadores, and one or two more from civil society leaders will be presented to the public as the "better alternative". Significantly, most if not all of the mix and match, figure very high in both the SWS and Pulse Asia’s recent surveys. The political parties in the "third force" would consist of the Nacionalista, the Liberal faction of Senator Frank Drilon, the LDP, or what remains of it, the Aksyon Demokratiko, plus independents, meaning those with no known political party affiliations (as of press time).

At first glance, it looks silly getting personalities who do not even speak to each other inside one senatorial line-up. But then, some do not even know what they are getting into, because the two re-electionist conspirators are not telling everything. The key to their sales talk is money – lots of it (kuno) which is hard to come by in mid-term elections. The two were elected in 2001, when the campaign season began barely a month since GMA ascended to power. They were part of what was billed as a "people power" ticket, fueled by hatred for the deposed president. Malacañang bankrolled that campaign, which served as the first litmus test of political acceptability of a regime ushered into power by a grand conspiracy. The ill-fated Edsa Tres stole the thunder from what they had hoped to be a clean sweep, and four from the Pwersa ng Masa survived the 2001 senatorial debauchery. Garci and his gang had not yet been harnessed completely.

Here's more:

Now one of these senators has been assured of a slot in the opposition line-up, courtesy of the political party he is affiliated with, and whose president has been quietly negotiating with the mainstream opposition. This party has been quite deft at political brinkmanship. In its roster are some of the most strident oppositionists, champions of impeachment in the Lower House after the Hello Garci tapes were discovered, and champions likewise of the struggle against a railroaded cha-cha. But many in the party are fence-sitters, or otherwise straddle the political divide.

Senator Noted.

The other senator is one who has yet to make up his mind on whether to run for re-election or not. He sounds like an independent, and indeed, the man is gifted with sharp wit and sharp mental reflexes. But in many a scandal that rocked the present administration, he has been a sly protector of her interests, or to put it more succinctly, "his".

Joker Arroyo.

My mole in the palace who has always told me correct information in the past, says the idea is to "kill" the Erap-led "unity" ticket before it is even born. A third force composed of heavyweights will be billed as the "principled alternative", guys who were mostly at Edsa Dos, and even those who were with the fallen president but who have had a "change of heart". Funny thing is, some of the names mentioned as being part of the "Third Farce" do not yet know what they might eventually get suckered into.

So secretly, ayaw pala matuloy ng admin ang Erap-led unity ticket. Hmmm...

One re-electionist senator who figures very high in the surveys wants to be part of a single ticket, but he belongs to a party whose leaders were very much a moving force in Edsa Dos, and as such, he is distrusted by some elements of the Estrada-identified opposition. His party-mate, a young congressman who is heir to an illustrious name, likewise wants to be part of a single opposition ticket, but the farce of a third force wants to claim them on the basis of their Edsa Dos affinity with them.

Ralph Recto (re-electionist senator) and Alan Peter Cayetano, Recto's party-mate congressman.

One very visible oppositionist in the Senate who also ranks at the top in surveys, will not want to be in the company of another re-electionist in the same ticket, but the palace tacticians ask, what choice would he have if the slate is completed and the so-called opposition ticket has been hollowed out as a result?

Lacson (very visible oppositionist) and Angara (the "other" re-electionist).

To make the third farce look even more like a powerful force, it will include the most strident oppositionist in the House, the young guy most disliked by the pater familia, not to mention les fils et frere. Incroyable?

Alan Peter Cayetano.

There’s more. Two senators who want to go back to familiar haunts are also billeted in the grand conspiracy. Both were champions of the ill-fated run of the King whose presidency was stolen by a conspiracy of cheats. The trick is to first hollow-out the opposition ticket by getting two major political party components out of it, and then face the two with no other choice but to join in the farce of a third force. And what’s in it for them? First-class accommodations all the way, all expenses paid. Would they get to their final destination, that "Shangri-la" called the Senate of the realm? Oh yes, they would be allowed to win to lend the elections credibility. After all, the palace tacticians say, "madali namang kausapin ang mga iyan pagdating ng panahon".

Sino kaya ito?

But what about the terror of Pidal, and that brat who keeps talking in German when the premiere famille understands only Castilian? That’s where the Comelec, and the police, and the military, and the cooperative LGU’s step in.

At the end of the day, we will have the following "newly elected or newly re-elected senators": Five re-electionists who are politically "workable", two from the NP, one LP, one LDP and one independent. Two balik-Senado. Plus five from the kakampi menagerie.

They would hijack the elections, even before the campaign begins. Brilliant. Machiavellian. As deft as a Sun-Tzu battle maneuver. And the "united" opposition is out-maneuvered once again, all because they have a "surfeit" of applicants while there is what looks at first glance as a plague in the other house. Except that what you see is not what you get. Legerdemain, magic, mirrors, smokescreens, the "prestige".

And the attraction is that which has always been fatal to anyone with ambition – money and more money. Which the opposition does not have. And the assurance that what the cheats did in 2004 they can reprise with greater finesse, because the cheats are all in the woodwork. Plus what they call the "political will" to do what ought to be done to retain themselves in power, by hook or by crook. And every day that passes merely shows that they can brutally carry out whatever it is they are bent on accomplishing, whether it is the prosecutorial massacre of elected officials, or the cover-up of the grandest and greatest of crimes against the people.

This is what we will all deserve, either because we are amorally conscripted, or because those who claim to lead us lead only for personal glory.

UPDATE: Sino ba ang source ni Lito Banayo? Si Defensor? I don't disagree with everything Lito says, especially the "Third Farce" concept, but maybe Lito's being played and "spun around" too by his leaky source in Malacanang. The information Lito got may not be an outright lie, but it's not exactly the "true" truth either, but an interpretation of the truth from Tolits' Malacanang source.

Read this too from MLQ3: We saw the alternative:

MUCH as I’m not the only one underwhelmed by the United Opposition’s Senate slate, I feel uncomfortable with the hammering it is getting because of the names it contains. Not only because the list isn’t finished; much of the criticism is unwarranted and unfair.

Read the whole thing.

UPDATE: Angara's bid hinges on "Third Farce"