Going Outside the Box on Dynasties

How educated are Filipinos,

One of the striking differences between American and Filipino politics is Filipino willingness to buy day old bread. Or even moldy bread infested with creatures


I’d like to raise some ideas regarding dynasties. Two, to be specific:

Affirmative action

    Recognizing the truth of the Philippines

    Affirmative Action
    “Affirmative action” is a term emerging from the U.S. during the 1970’s and 80’s as America tried to figure out how to solve the deeply engrained problem of racism.
    The dilemma was that white America had locked out blacks because blacks could not get the education and qualifications they needed to rise into executive positions. The awareness of the problem eventually expanded to include all minorities.
    The solution was new laws establishing a kind of “authorized reverse discrimination” requiring that colleges and large corporations establish goals to move a targeted percentage of minorities onto their student or employment rolls. Colleges and companies were required to open doors to minorities in an affirmative, pro-active way.

    There were of course complaints. “It’s unfair to whites.” “You’ll have to bring aboard unqualified people.” Court challenge was undertaken and the court ruled that affirmative action was a legitimate tool to overcome prior negligence (racism) that was punitive to minorities. It was authorized as a legitimate policy to correct prior damages in order to “right the books”.
    And it did right the books. It was not done without friction, without occasional complaint or abuse, but it brought ethnic diversity to universities and to the workplace. It gave minorities a fair shot at high achievement. It reached its apex with President Obama’s election in 2008. Today, minorities are highly visible in government and corporate executive suites. In the future, we will see minorities continue to rise to prominence in the U.S. as whites subside to their appropriate demographic levels.
    If you look at dynasties in the Philippines, the situation is pretty much the same. The dynastic families have a lock on opportunity. They form an aristocratic class. They have a lock on the top jobs and the key legislative and executive positions. They rule the provinces and cities. It is hard for a person of good brains but no welcoming committee to break through. The dynastic leaders have better qualifications and better networks supporting them.
    The solution currently being proposed is to restrict or outright ban dynasties. That’s what the Constitution requires. But no implementing laws have been passed because it is such a complex and self-punishing job for leaders who belong to those dynasties. How can they be expected to end the favors that allow their sons and daughters to rise to success? So the Constitutional obligation has sat for 25 years in the “pending” file.
    My thought is that perhaps it would be better to follow the logic of America’s affirmative action laws. Forget about punishing the dynasty members outright. Don’t take their jobs away. In the U.S., that would be like taking a white guy’s job away and handing it to a black. Brutal.
    Our President’s family. These are good people.

    But DO open avenues of opportunity for those not belonging to the aristocratic families.

    REQUIRE that COMELEC candidate approval lists include 20% or more non-dynasty candidates in 2016. Up it to 30% in 2019 and increase it at 10% per election cycle until it is 80%. 
    It will be necessary to define dynasty. If Congress can’t do that, Humpty Dumpty would be happy to step in and supplant the cranial shortcomings of the Congress and their ample legal staffs.
    The idea is to avoid punishing any specific dynasty person or family. Agreed, the competitive environment for available positions would tighten steadily. But that is a good thing, no? It would assure that the qualifying dynasty members are voted into office or appointed based on skill, not name.
    When that nettlesome Constitutional obligation is fulfilled, then Congress can turn its attention to equal opportunity in the corporate marketplace to end nepotistic hiring by large businesses. To open channels of opportunity for talented Filipinos so that ambition and “to aspire” becomes a driving force for higher productivity in the Philippines.
    Recognizing the Truth of the Philippines
    This is a completely different take on the matter.
    The subject arose during a brief exchange I had with Raissa Robles on her blog. In her article, she had cited the differences between U.S. and Chinese governmental structures and processes. Then brought in the Philippines. Here’s thelink to our exchange within the article thread. The remarks I made that are pertinent to dynasties are contained in the following excerpts from JoeAm:
    • “The Philippines needs its own vision rather than a sottocopy of the US. But no one has articulated a clear vision unique to the island structure and family allegiances that are distinctive to the nation. Edgar Lores did a parsing on my blog of President Aquino’s SONA vs. President Obama’s victory speech. Dramatically different fundamentals, with Obama focused on liberty and hope – a softer almost spiritual orientation – while Aquino centered on achievements, corruption and practical matters. One was a dream, the other a check list.”
    • “What does the Philippines want to be when it grows up? I have no idea.”
    • “. . . the family/clan structure is so very different in the Philippines. Writing the response to you made me think that the Philippines should stop denying that it is a clan society, and structure its government to recognize it and leverage it as strength, rather than try to fit clans into a US style democracy. Far out thinking, I know. . .”
    Why deny that the Philippines is what it is? It is a divided nation, geographically, with over 7,000 islands. The 114 dialects testifies to the cultural divisions as well. Then there are the clans, the families, the tribes. Most provinces and cities are controlled by dominant families. Those are facts. Imposing a vanilla U.S. style democratic ideal at the national level tends to deny the local power structures.
    It ends up being  a mutation as dynastic forces and the trading of favors dominate democratic process. Ideals like free expression are shoved aside in favor of power plays.
    Many of the local leaders, in U.S. terms, would be considered corrupt as they devise ways to apply government funds to assure staying in power. Vote buying, physical intimidation through private armies or local police, or directing project improvements to those areas that support candidates. In the Philippines, that is business as usual. Using government money to stay in office.
    Within that framework of local power, does Philippine culture support U.S. style freedoms? No, not at all. Authority is pronounced. You don’t hear leaders touting liberty and diversity. It isn’t in the lexicon or national personality to welcome outspoken protest. Too threatening. You hear leaders touting obedience and the idea that citizens should cooperate and work hard to contribute. To give. Not take.
    My natural inclination is to condemn such values. But what if I said:
    • “No, wait a minute. Is there order? Is there peace? Are there rules everyone understands? Is there a framework for development?”
    The answer is yes, yes, yes, and yes.
    So my brain, deciding to skip from A to Z and forget G and M and other intermediates, wonders, what if the national government were not of the American style? What if it were of the Chinese or even Afghan style, a committee of clan leaders or warlords? What if provinces were re-aligned to FIT dynasties rather than dynasties slugging it out to claim provinces?
    What if there were only one Congressional house, the Council of Elders, that sat as a Board of Directors to the nation to approve proposals from its appointed Chief Executive. Empowered to fire the Chief Executive if necessary. Empowered to approve laws drafted by Executive.
    National elections would not be needed. Perhaps elections would be held in the province to endorse or contest the elder for that region. Or perhaps each province would operate as a little dictatorship and we could get rid of COMELEC and its impossible task of being judge and referee in a convoluted mutation of democracy. And sell all of those clunky machines.
    It seems radical, no?
    But at least we would eliminate the bastardized monstrosity of ineffectual democracy that exists now, in which tribal powers and authority run against the grain of democratic ideals. Sotto could pull his power within his province. Plagiarize, cheat, lie, even steal. If his provincial subjects are willing to put up with that, so be it.
    At the national level, Sotto would have to tread lightly because there would be rules in place to deal with recalcitrant elders not willing to walk the national line. Like merge their province with a neighbor, or divide it up.
    Conflicts would be resolved  as they are now in Mindanao. Localized. Powerfully. Killing is a wonderful enforcer.
    And the Philippines would thrive.
    Because we are fitting the government and the method to the madness, rather than trying to force the madness into democratic form.
    35 Responses to “Going Outside the Box on Dynasties”
    1. Anonymous says:

      I get your drift. If this country were a car, it's not moving, we only feel it's working because the motor's running. Gas is wasted. We're waiting for some Pinoy Godot that we only know will appear on "the second coming". Meanwhile, poor people are tired and hungry waiting for their meal in styro with a politician's face on its cover.DocB

    2. Anonymous says:

      …And JoeAm feels there's got to be a better way. One is the jirga…DocB

    3. Jirga: "a Pashto term for a decision making assembly of male elders".It's a better way than a do-nothing Congress more interested in posture than performance.

    4. Edgar Lores says:

      Hmm, a compromise solution: a partial ban rather than a total ban, and staggered over several election cycles.PROS1. Dynasties will be decimated within 6 election cycles (18 years) by the year 2034.2. There will be equal opportunity and increasing opportunity for non-dynasts starting from 2016.CONS/ISSUES1. Would not a Partial Ban Bill be as hard to pass into law as a Total Ban Bill?2. How will the partial ban be implemented in terms of priority?2.1 Should it be done geographically? For instance, Luzon first, then Visayas, then Mindanao?2.2 Should it be done by the perceived quality of goodness or badness? Examples: Angaras good, Binays bad?2.3 Should it be done by a horizontal level of office? For instance, a dynast cannot run for a position currently occupied or just vacated by a relation? Examples: A Cayetano and JV Ejercito.2.4 Should it be done by a vertical level of office? For instance, a dynast cannot run for a position lower than the one he or a relation currently occupies? Example: Angara Sr running for governor or Nancy Binay for senator.3. How will dynasties be kept to a minimum after 2034?3.1 By anti-dynasty rules such as non-concurrency and non-sequentiality?4. Shall the definition implied by the Constitution in Section 13 of Article VII be applied: “the spouse and relatives by consanguinity or affinity within the fourth civil degree”?5. What possible loopholes can dynasties formulate?5.1 Change of surname?5.2 Change of province?

    5. Anonymous says:

      Political dynasty could not ge legislated because it runs counter to basic freedom. Only the electorates could stop dynasties. The people have to be educated, reject doleouts and be wise voters. Political action grioups, netizens could be active spearheading a drive to reject unqualified members of dynasties. I repeat Unqualified. If the opponent is less qualified relative to education, intelligence and more tainted like corrupt and violent, then dynasty member must be considered. Jackie Enrile, JV Ejercito, Nancy Binay come foremost to mind in the current crop of Unqualified Dynasty family of senatorial candidates. There are more than 20 candidates deserving election before them considerin we only have to choose 12. Peter Cayetano and Bam Aquino are examples of qualified candidates compared to the previous 3 dynasty family kins. No brainer to choose.Beg to disagree that affirmative action in US should be applied to political dynasty restriction. "Require Comelec to allocate 20% or more of non dynasty candidates"Nonsense. How could Comelec arrive at such calculation, from the national number of candidates or local number? If nationally, there is no need because 20% is easily met, probably true too with local town candidates. Thus affirmative action not the answer. Maybe, by legislating that a current immediate family like spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, first degree cousins and in laws could be restricted running from any local and national position concurrently or succeeding the incumbent official could be enacted. But then again, that violates individual rights to liberty and free choice.Leaving the country to one solution: determination by the electorates to rid dynasties locally and nationally aided by vocal concerned citizen groups.Johnny Lin

    6. 1. The name would not be so negative. It might be "Government Service Equal Opportunity Bill". It would be easier to pass because it is not an overnight slamming shut of doors and congressment woul still see opportunity for their sons and daughters who are now on the threshhold of service.2.1 No. Nationwide.2.2 No. It should be based on family relationships only, not subjective measures.2.3 Rule to be decided on drafting of legislation. I'd recommend if the job is vacant, there is no conflict.2.4 Rule to be decided on drafting of legislation. There is no "banning"; the question is how to calibrate opportunities.3.1 Rule to be decided. Affirmative action rules remain in place, at 80%. There is no "banning" per se.4 Yes. The Consitution definition would apply, plus any ancillary relationships determined by the Congress.5.1 and 5.2. To be addressed in rule-making to preent cheating. Biliogical relationship is the key. Resident requirements remain as is, I would think. Or could be tightened.

    7. As long as Imelda Marcos and Gloria Arroyo and Manny Pacquiao remain in Congress, I'd say the Philippine electorate is not qualified to judge dynasty member skills and needs the help of COMELEC. Affirmative action corrects the damages being done to those qualified candidates who are excluded from a career track to Congress, and other government positions. You can certainly issue more challenges than I can answer because the idea is only vaguely formed in my head. The trick is to open doors for competence to emerge, not keep them nailed shut, WHILE AT THE SAME TIME not unduly penalizing existing families.I am searching for a way forward, which has not been found in 25 years. And given the current bickeing will never be found. I'm not not talking ideal, but practical, and compromise. Ideal is hard-headed and makes it impossible to move. We have to find some ways to bend.

    8. Coco says:

      What a large subject. What an important subject. What a difficult subject. What an universal subject. Just some thoughts of the hip.Dealing with dynasties, one can make two types of errors. Type 1 is being too strict on dynasties by excluding capable politicians and bringing in second class outsiders; Type 2 is being not strict enough by allowing incapable family members and exclude capable outsiders. A law so fine that it excludes both types of errors seems impossible, this means that one has to decide on what side he wants to err more. The chance to find another Ampatuan or GMA in a dynasty seems higher than finding them between outsiders and the chance to find another Robredo might be higher outside dynasties. Therefore I would tend to err strongly at the Type 2 side. An additional reason to err at that side is because of my strong believe that more of the same will result in more of the same and after 60 year the Philippines could do with some changes.Dynasties should only be defined by kinship. A full point for first degree, half point for second degree and so on. (kinship according cannon law) Weigh factors: x3 for national level senators, secretaries, president…, x2 for provincial level, governor, representatives…, x1 for local level executives and legislators. Concentration factor for legislators and/or executives in the same province x2. Dynasties could be definition today when the total number > 9, in 5 years > 6.But dynasties might be the wrong tree to bark at if you want to improve the democracy in a colony. The constitution should have talked about colonisers, being those who assure that all wealth flows to the “motherland”. Aren’t the 100 families eventually pulling all the triggers? Dynasties and money often go hand in hand. To have a chance to be elected, you have to spent a lot in the Philippines.(but it is a good investment, an average politician stealing 1,000 pesos from 1,000,000 people makes a billion – much easier than stealing 1,000,000 pesos from 1,000 rich people.) Shouldn’t the state subsidize political organizations and set limits for political campaigning as in most European countries?

    9. Anonymous says:

      "We the people" is sole ideal and practical solution.Qualified candidates are excluded because they lost the election, "We the people" was the cause of defeat.Compromise without basic right violation is difficult to achieve. Comelec function is to vet qualifications of candidates, supervise voter registration and conduct free and fair election. Comelec does not have business mandating or determining who falls under political dynasty. This is practical acknowledgement of Comelec limitations. Wishful thinking on Comelec is acceptable but realistically, it is what it is, ambitious dream.Am I against political dynasty? yes, with certain limitations. Is legislation the answer? Probably not, as long as basic individual right is curtailed.Johnny Lin

    10. Anonymous says:

      Closider close knit families.One family is well educated, rich and the other familes are middle class and poor. When problems arise everyone goes to the educated family for counsel and assistance. When financing is the problem, same solution, run to the rich educated family. The downtrodden does not have much choice to run to within the family. Only option is seek help outside the family but the repayment could be stiff compared to that from the family.Apply this scenario to a local town. Since there are many educated and wealthy families available to the people, they could run to anybody for help. There are different avenues so the people have many choices. The people must make the right choice even if the most powerful and wealthy dynasty offers more but requires heavy returns for gratitude. Bottom line: people making a free choice. Tough decision but that is the price of freedom!Johnny Lin

    11. Coco says:

      I fully agree that it is “We the people”, but sometimes you need to prime the pump, you need a little push to get over a threshold. Democracy as culture are difficult things to absorb. Sugar is an easy taste, make it sweeter and it sells better, but the best food I know isn’t always sweet, I’m grateful my parents pushed me to eat new things, bitter things too. 100 Peso now is easier to understand than 1000 peso tomorrow. Equality driving economical progress as a better founded theory than the rich will provide jobs, meaning the more rich people the more jobs or bottom line inequality drives progress.Who can force the people to taste democracy? How to explain democracy? As the current situation is the result of the current systems, what part of the system do we have to change to obtain a different result? Are the growing middle class and the netizens powerful enough to achieve this? I would like to share your optimism and sometimes I see very positive signs too.

    12. The situation requires an elegance of compromise to prevent the harms that either extreme assures, punishment of qualified dynasty people or blocking qualified outsiders. That's what Affirmative Action does, tempers the extremes by moving stepwise toward the goal of open opportunity. Certainly the existing condition is not open, and that, I think, people can agree on.I really like your analytical approach to scoring family clout. Masterful.I'm not clear on your paragraph "But dynasties might be the wrong tree . . ." I'm not sure of the point.How to equalize the money advantage. Boy, you accuse ME of biting off a big subject!! The U.S. is certainly not the place to look for solutions. This needs some home grown solutions. State subsidies may be it; I'm not versed on that.

    13. Yeah, what coco said! heheCOMELEC, as you said, is charged with vetting candidate qualifications, and this should be done in the quality of the candidate pool as well as the quality of the individual candidate.

    14. The people being punished by not opening up the candidate pipeleines are qualified people who can't get into public service, and all citizens of the nation who are damaged by being served by unqualified family members. Real damage is being done. Screw free choice. Help it along a little. Just as America determined that racial fairness needed a little help.

    15. Anonymous says:

      At the top, I already touched on your "prime the pump". Reiterating, educate electorates, reject doleouts, be wise voters and maybe other tools moving the "piece". At the bottom, i also posted, "decision is tough but that is the price of freedom""one would not know how deep the lake is until jumping into the lake" Try is the first stride, "we the people", has to make!Johnny Lin

    16. Anonymous says:

      JoeYour tenacity is admirable but you don't get it. Racial affirmative action would not work with Philippine suffrage. The former is quality, the latter is quantity. In affirmative action, acceptance standards were lowered accommodating the minorities. Suffrage, basically, is supposed to be equal, fair and free guaranteed by the constitution but the winner requires numerical superiority. What aspects could be compromised? Anybody can run for office. Nobody prevents them as long as they meet qualifications prescribed by Comelec. Lower the standards of qualifications? But that does not guarantee winning?That environmental protester in Gonzaga Cagayan running against the current mayor is perfect example. The people has to make the decision. With your solution, how are we going to accommodate her thru affirmative action? Give her extra 10,000 votes like the extra points on sports betting or shall we say the relatives of the dynasty are not allowed to vote and all environmental advocates votes are counted five times.These examples are forms of lowering the standards to accommodate non dynasty candidates. Screwing free choice violates the law of the land. In that case, change the government if we have to discard the basic tenet. But that is not solution. There are other means to preserve rights of the people.Johnny Lin

    17. Anonymous says:

      @Coco and JoeAs I said "try" is the first stride. Not different from Coco's gratitude to his parents that the new things he tasted, whether bitter, bland or sweeter. Positively, there was one thing his parents carefully thought of, that the new food was not poisonous.That is precisely what I am advocating, that the measures taken are not poisonous to basic freedom. Comparing ideas: Education(bland), rejecting doleouts(bitter) and wise vote(sweeter)Johnny Lin

    18. Edgar Lores says:

      Let's clear the confusion a bit.1. There are two freedoms here: the freedom to run and the freedom to vote.2. The freedom to vote is NOT in question.3. The freedom to run is qualified by the Constitution.3.1 Only bona fide candidates can run.3.2 Political dynasties are prohibited.3.3 Therefore not all members of a dynasty are bona fide candidates.3.4 "Bona fide" criteria can include degree of consanguinity, affinity, and time elements such as concurrency and sequentiality.3.5 Coco's suggestion of applying weights to consanguinity may work but may be hard to apply. Would suggest limiting consanguinity to two degrees.

    19. Edgar Lores says:

      The mayor of Gonzaga is not a dynast?

    20. Attila says:

      I believe only the Chinese can change the country for the better. The Philippine economy today is already controlled by the Chinese anyway. Most Filipinos already have a Chinese boss. My wife explained to me that when a Chinese marries a Filipina he will not be pressured for money and support from the wife side of the family. It is understood that Chinese are smart business minded people and they are naturally "kuripot". If a Filipina marries a Kano than he will not be forgiven if he is not generous to the wife's side of the family. The Kano has no choice but go along otherwise the Filipina will come under enormous pressure from her family. There is a double standard: one for the Chinese and one for the Kanos. We are not to be taken seriously and "untang na loob" is not applied to us. We are admired and liked for American products and dollars but we are deeply rejected for being Americans. We are foreigners and we will always will be as vs. to Chinese. I say the Chinese are the future. It is time for the Americans to step aside and give up on the Philippines. Americans are never be taken seriously not matter how hard we tried. We intimidate them. We should just let it go.

    21. I get it, but don't buy it. Your argument that we'd end up "lowering standards" is the same objection racists threw up against affirmative action. They were wrong. I'm saying give non-family aspirants a little bit wider door to walk through. The qualified people exist. They just don't have a shot now. Yes, just get them on the ballot, that is fine. If there is also a push for more intelligent choices among the electorate, we will start to see non-family members emerge. Push the edges a little, that's all. Don't take abrupt actions that punish. Push the edges.Your "wise voter" idea is an ideal that is hard to get to without a massive push. Otherwise, it would have succeeded by now. Dynastic rule was known in 1987, the wise voter solution was also an option then.The law of the land is against dynasties. The issue is how to get there.

    22. You are a trouble-maker today, I see. America stepped aside in 1946 or whenever. I have no trouble with the Philippines being a province of China, or three states in America. I'd much rather, however, she simply stood up on her own. She has a long way to go, based on the National Whining I am hearing today. More on that tomorrow and much more on Wednesday.

    23. Anonymous says:

      Gonzaga mayoral race was just an example. Important was the example given on affirmative action to award extra votes to the non dynast opponent. Specific example is Governor Pineda of Pampanga against Fr. ed Panlilio.3.2 Political dynasties are prohibited but there is no guiding rule for implementation. Current bill is in limbo.Above, I commented "Maybe by legislation on degree of consanguinity". Johnny Lin

    24. Anonymous says:

      We can give all the opportunities to the minority candidate, lower standards, build a wide entrance door to his candidacy, every blogger contributes 10 pesos to his campaign but all of these are not guarantees for him to win. The other incentive affirmative action s he gets more votes to be counted and the dynasty gets less votes to level the playing field from doleouts (vote buying) by the dynasty member.Affirmative action motive is increasing the opportunity for the opponent of dynasty member thereby preventing political dynasties. In election, qualification is not enough, quantity of votes is deciding factor. What is the fair solution on this problem? Johnny Lin

    25. Anonymous says:

      @AttilaThe Koreans have landed!He he heJohnny Lin

    26. Where's baycas when you need him most? I think the logic of the court rulings in the US on affirmative action, where opponents are making the same argument you are, if applied to dynasties, would be: (1) damage has been done historically by not having a diverse choice of candidates, (2) special consideration is needed to correct the damage, (3) the fairness is to be found in correcting the damage, (4) special measures to assure diversity are thereby fair.The idea is to open doors that are now closed. The result will be more outsiders at little penalty to existing dynasties. Doing it solely through a wise electorate is a pipe dream, I fear.

    27. Anonymous says:

      Two pending bills may yet usher in what you're advocating:1. FOI, will blow wide open the entanglements, business operations of these dynasties, and 2. Campaign finance, will incentivize poorer candidates and expose particular lobbies like the INC. But getting from point A to point B of these bills will be "devilish" (as in the devil is in the details).DocB

    28. They could indeed be door openers. It is interesting to me to see the President's hard-nosed advocacy in jailing Arroyo but soft stance on FOI, although it will do more to clean up illicit acts. If the details are not too devilish. Campaign finance, too. A rat's nest, I would suspect.

    29. Anonymous says:

      Super foolishness…. by Attila

    30. Edgar Lores says:

      Good, an agreement.1. So we are not screwing the free choice of the people.2. What we want to stop or reduce is the screwing of the people by dynasties, who so far have been given free rein to run – and pillage and massacre – in spite of constitutional prohibition.3. The stoppage or reduction cannot be done by Congress because of vested interest. Nor can it be done by an impoverished and unenlightened electorate.4. What other options are there?4.1 An executive order that will define what constitutes a dynasty? The order can be brought to the Supreme Court to determine its constitutionality. Verdict: unlikely.4.2 A people's initiative. Verdict: unlikely.4.3 Revolution. Verdict: unlikely.4.4 An Act of God. Verdit: wishful thinking.5. Shall we then, to contradict yesterday's call and to paraphrase The Bard, "bemoan our outcast state, and trouble deaf heaven with our bootless cries, and look upon ourselves and curse our fates?"6. I, for one, am sorely tempted.7. The Filipino is contemptible.7.1 Widely-read columnists defending dynasties. Only PDI's Neal Cruz has consistently vented his frustration.7.2 Alan Cayetano claiming he's a good dynast but not subjecting Sotto to disciplinary action.7.3 Jejomar Binay, vice-president and Ken-doll handler extraordinaire, not believing in prohibiting dynasties and not upholding the Constitution.7.4 The CBCP holding a pro-life conference in Cebu with an impeached justice, a martial law oppressor and a superstitious congresswoman as leading speakers. Where is the humility of Cardinal-designate Tagle?7.5 If Attila is a trouble-maker, today I stand beside Mariano.

    31. "bemoan our outcast state, and trouble deaf heaven with our bootless cries, and look upon ourselves and curse our fates?"That's downright beautiful.I am in agreement with your points, even including 7.5. My tongue was in my cheek upon the utterance, and you have caused me to bite. It is painful.I am also "all in" on number 5, as the next two blogs will certify.

    32. Anonymous says:

      FYIABS CBN NEWS ONLINE Frontpage: Multimedia: 6 Signs that PH is turning KoreanHe he heJohnny Lin

    33. Attila says:

      Turning Korean? Koreans in general don't marry Filippinas as oppose to Chinese. Koreans are clannish and in to themselves. They have no intention either to turn the Philippines in to Korean. Same for the Indians. China however feel that deep connection with the Philippines. They are also melted in to Philippines already. No emotional baggage and hate.

    34. Attila says:

      Joe:Yes the US gave up on the Philippines already in 1946 or when Estrada kicked the Navy out. My point is that America should cut back on both military and economic support. If they can not stand up on their own than it is time for the Philippines to go with the people and culture they respect and accept and that is China.

    35. Ah, okay, I see, yes. I think the U.S. gives but a pittance in direct aid so I think that is actually the official posture. You do make a good point that China and the Philippines are culturally much better aligned than the Philippines and America. That has been a forced and awkward combination from the getgo in 1898. I do believe, however, the Philippines is working diligently, if staggering now and then, to stand upright. It is up to us hornets to sting it on the ass now and then to keep it moving straight ahead.

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