o finally the cat is out of the
bag, so to speak. But we Pinoys should not be surprised at all. We all
know how corrupt our country is. Even before former president Gloria
Macapagal-Arroyo was accused of electoral sabotage and the misuse of public
funds in 2011; even before Joseph “Erap” Estrada—an earlier president was
convicted of plunder by the Sandiganbayan in 2007; even before Ferdinand
Marcos, a president-turned-dictator, was booted out of the country along
with his family and cronies twenty-eight years ago; we Pinoys knew
they were corrupt. We also knew our Senators, congressmen, governors,
mayors, Barangay chairmen, BIR and Customs officials, and our next-door
neighbors were never totally on the up-and-up. And how did we know this? We knew
it because we ourselves are as corrupt as all of them.
The sad truth is that we
Filipinos are just as flawed and just as weak of character as the
politicians we elect into office. We are not very forthright, we lie and
cheat…and take the easy way out whenever we can. We choose to make money
the fast, and “sleazy way,” rather than the slow and honest way. We
even hold in the highest esteem people who are wealthy and ostentatious…never-mind if
we know they're
So how can we Pinoys appear surprised that our lawmakers are
now accused of receiving
kickbacks from Janet Lim-Napoles and her criminal organization? Truth be
told, if you pressed any “Juan-on-the-street” they would likely tell you
that as far as they're concerned, all our politicians are corrupt. A few are
better at hiding their nefarious deeds than others.
Thus all the protestations by
Senators Jinggoy Estrada, Bong Revilla, Juan Ponce-Enrile, even Miriam
Defensor Santiago, Chiz Escudero, et.al., blend into a cacophony of white
noise that we Pinoys over the years have learned to simply tune out.
And then we have the Aquino
administration that is content to simply spin its wheels until the 2016
election rolls around. They're happy basking in the glory of pretending to go
after big-time crooks in government. But the stark reality is that in the
end, they will
likely achieve next to nothing except pass on already “cold” cases to the next
administration—cases that will likely end in acquittals. So, nothing really changes.
President Benigno Aquino III is simply raising the hopes of Pollyannaish
Filipinos who think that real change might actually
happen in their lifetimes.
We saw something similar after
the EDSA revolution when Filipinos were euphoric at having booted-out Marcos
and his cronies, only to wake up to the sad reality that today the Marcoses
and their cronies are all back and as rich and as powerful as ever. Filipinos
just have to accept the fact that in the Philippines, the more things
change, the more they stay the same. And the Philippines will
remain in this sad constant forever.
It is incomprehensible to many that despite all the negatives piling up against it, the Aquino administration is still pushing for Congress to ratify the Bangasamoro Basic Law (BBL). First and foremost, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front with whom the Philippine government entered into an agreement with, massacred 44 Special Action Force (SAF)
policemen who were serving an arrest warrant on an international
Doctor Expedito Castillo, a retired internist with training in sports medicine thinks so. Castillo who lives in New York points out that Los Angeles—where Manny Pacquiao now trains for his May 2nd fight, and Las Vegas—where Floyd Mayweather trains and where the boxing match will take place, have enormous differences in terms of elevation. Los Angeles is just 233 feet above sea-level, while Las Vegas is a whopping 2,000 feet above sea-level.
Just When You Thought Filipino Cops Were the Worst, Here Come US Cops
What in the world has happened to cops in the United States? It seems that today only psychotic, unstable, individuals are joining the U.S. police force this days. People from all across the globe were more than willing to give American cops the benefit of the doubt, at first. But in instance after instance, from Ferguson, MS and the killing of Michael Brown, a young black man who witnesses say was unarmed and posed no threat at all to police; to today’s cold-blooded murder of Walter F. Scott, 50 by South Carolina police officer Michael T. Slager,
NPA Celebrates 46 Years of Destroying the Philippines
Founded by Bernabe Buscayno, or “Kumander Dante” as he was more commonly known, the New People’s Army established on March 29, 1969 marks its 46th year of existence. From less than 40 founding members and a handful of firearms, the NPA grew to over 26,000 members in the 1980s. Today however the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) places NPA membership at less than 5,000 nationwide. That number is expected to dwindle even further as progress and education creep in to the far-flung towns and barrios that were once breeding grounds for recruits.
Lee Kuan Yew and Ferdinand Marcos, What a Difference!
An Australian living in the Philippines published a book titled: “The Unlucky Country. The Republic of the Philippines in the 21st Century.” The author Duncan McKenzie came up with the title as the counterpoint to “The Lucky Country” a book written in the mid-sixties that refers to Australia. In his book McKenzie explains that the Philippines is unlucky because, for starters, it is an archipelago and therefore naturally fragmented.
Will the Philippines Ever Speed Up Its Glacially-Slow Justice System?
We’ve all heard the saying “justice delayed is justice denied.” That maxim has been around since time immemorial. In fact the Pirkei Avot (Hebrew for “Ethics of the Fathers”) which dates back to the 1st century B.C. mentions an old rabbi saying that goes: “the sword comes into the world, because of justice delayed and justice denied." In 1215 A.D. a clause from the Magna Carta similarly declares that “to no one will we refuse or delay, right or justice."
Amal Alamuddin Clooney Wants to Defend Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo ...Why?
Okay so she's George Clooney's wife, she's got great looks, a law degree and ambitious enough to make a name for herself apart from that of her superstar husband. Fair enough. So Amal Alamuddin Clooney decides to take on high profile cases of injustice around the world. Even better. But filing a complaint with the United Nations Human Rights Council on behalf of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo? What's up with that? Better do your homework Mrs. Clooney. It won't take long for you to realize that Arroyo is getting exactly what she deserves.
Manny Pacquiao Should Not Be Given a Tax Exemption
Senator Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III has proposed a bill to grant Manny Pacquiao a special tax exemption for the income he will earn from his May 2nd boxing match with Floyd Mayweather Jr. Pimentel justifies his bill as a "fitting tribute" to the Filipino eight-division world champion adding that "Manny is now part of our history and of world sports history. Let’s give him this tax incentive in recognition to his invaluable efforts to promote boxing and the country around the world."
With Negotiators Like These on Our Team, Who Needs an Opposing Side?
What on earth happened to these two women—supposedly handpicked by the president himself to argue on behalf of the Philippine government in peace negotiations with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front—who now seem to be mouthpieces for the Moros? Have Secretary Teresita Deles, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process and Professor Miriam Coronel-Ferrer, chair of the negotiating panel become mesmerized by the tough "macho" image the rebels project?