The Binay road to power

jejomar-binay philnewsdotph

Vice President Binay [Source: philnews.ph]

Let me move this article to the front of the line because I think it is important considering the dueling going on now between those trying to make visible Vice President Binay’s alleged shenanigans as mayor of Makati, and those seeking to obfuscate and bury the conversation.

I come neither to praise nor bury Caesar, but to elaborate upon his methods.

Well, and to opine, of course. That’s the job description.

The idea of sister cities is a warm and fuzzy idea, isn’t it? Cities bonding together in friendship to share successes and help in need?

Get rid of that notion fast. The Binay dynasty has built an empire that is nothing less than the framework for a shadow national government, ready to take charge of the country and run it the old-fashioned way, with power and favor at the helm.

The empire is built on a huge nation-wide network of sister cities.

The count of Makati’s sister cities, or LGU’s (encompassing provinces, cities and municipalities), was tabulated at 334 in 2012, with some 235 additional LGUs in line  to sign up (Bacolodnons can avail Makati’s hospitalization, scholarships). The current number is unknown as the Makati web site is silent on this enterprise.

Makati, a city ruled by the Binay clan, is the center of this shadow national government. We are learning from Senate subcommittee hearings that Makati is ruled by the traditional methods of power and favor . . . and corruption. That presumes we believe the witnesses testifying before the Senate subcommittee. Color me presumptuous, along those lines.

Well, it looks to me like the mayors of sister cities are selling the sovereignty of their provinces, cities and municipalities down the river by subordinating their communities to the Binay clan. The testimonies of allegiance coming from the mayors are downright unnerving.

Here’s what Tagbilaran’s Mayor Dan Neri Lim wrote on July 18, 2009, celebrating his city’s “elevation” to sisterhood with Makati:

  • “Just as it is an honor for Tagbilaran to be elevated as a Sister City of Makati, even more so it is an honor for me to affix my signature beside a man who is destined for higher calling in our country.
    Makati is fortunate to have Mayor Binay at the helm for virtually its entire post-Edsa existence. To a lesser degree, Tagbilaran is fortunate for the special concern that Mayor Binay is giving it. Hopefully, we will remain special in his heart even when he will already have the entire country for his constituency.”

What would entice a Mayor to bow in complete civic obeisance to Mayor Jejomar Binay?

  • o·bei·sance, ōˈbāsəns, noun.  Definitiondeferential respect. Usage: “They paid obeisance to the prince.” Synonyms: respect, homage, worship, adoration, reverence, veneration, submission, deference. [Google]

Three Binay strategies

Jejomar Binay seems obsessed with becoming president. It has been his goal for 20 years. His family members line up perfectly behind him. Public opinions are irrelevant. This is destiny.

In a different era, he would be an emperor in waiting.

The sister city program is only one element of a well-thought out and well funded election plan. Here are three specific programs that we can witness from Binay deeds:

  • Capture major elements of the national press: the Binays get exceptionally favorable coverage and avid defense of their capabilities and promise from the Philippine press. Whole newspapers as well as specific reporters and columnists are loyal to the Vice President. The rumor is that some reporters and columnists are paid to put out stories favorable to the clan. It’s like NSA turned inside out, a network of undercover disinformation pros.
  • Sister city program: a national network of favors granted and debts owed. Is it any wonder how and why a woman of absolutely no qualification and skill was swept into the senate in 2013, or how Jejomar Binay holds a popularity rating that defies the problems surrounding him? We’ll elaborate on this below.
  • Build a coalition based on popularity, not skill: Jejomar Binay is a schmoozer, a buddy, a pal to many. He welcomes Manny Pacquiao to his party to run for senator. He touts Jinggoy Estrada for Vice president. Why? Because Pacquiao and Estrada, like the Romualdezes of Tacloban or Arroyos of Pampanga, can bring in huge numbers of votes. Their popularity overrides capability . . . and shame. Binay has no qualms about associating with incompetent or stained people if there is benefit to doing so.

The Binay clan is not just an ordinary trapos (traditional politicians) family, the clan EXCELS at the fundamentals of power and favor. The family positively reeks of privilege, coming down hard on security guards doing nothing more than their assigned job and always, always projecting an attitude of entitlement. Senator Nancy Binay is at the legislative helm, a certified green and unaccomplished senator who is the darling of a pandering press. To an outside observer, this looks a lot like royalty in the making.

How are favors granted, in exchange for debts owed?

In its softest sense, this is done through small kindnesses. Take the case of the 2012 “Foundation Day” celebration with 1,852 delegates from 356 sister cities meeting at the World Trade Center. Here’s an excerpt from the Interaksyon article about the event:

  • “The city government of Makati has been establishing ties with local governments from the time that Vice President Binay was the Mayor to foster sharing of best practices and economic and social assistance with each other. . . . Makati offers assistance that would enhance the literacy rate of students from sister LGUs, such as computer units and books. Mayor Binay has announced that qualified students from sister LGUs will be given scholarship at the Makati Science High School upon the completion of its new building. He said that qualified students will also be given a stipend and accommodation inside the school campus. . . .“Constituents of our sister LGUs can also avail of medical services offered by Ospital ng Makati,” he [Mayor Binay] said.”

I wonder if the son of the mayor of a sister city would qualify for a Science High School scholarship. You think?

Now there is also a hard way, an illicit way, that favors can be extended, and debts created. Cash in envelopes works nicely. Ask former Vice Mayor Mercado of Makati about that. He says he received cash envelopes for about 20 years. And he was a good boy until September 12, 2014, when he spilled the beans at a  Senate sub-committee hearing.

One must ask, really, what does Makati get from all the alliances?

  • There are best practices in several hundred sister cities that Makati can draw from? Never mind that Makati is the richest, most modern and developed city in the Philippines.
  • Makati officials are proud of their accomplishments and like to share their success stories? It is strictly magnanimous generosity? “We have a couple of billion pesos laying around and thought you might want to use some.”
  • Makati’s citizens can’t fill the city’s hospitals and schools, so excess space might as well be given to others? Makati’s citizens like paying for health care and education for citizens of other cities?
  • It is a network of favors granted . . . by Makati officials. . . and debts owed . . . to Makati officials?

You may pick the real rationale for the broad sister city program. But before you do, read the sense of indebtedness expressed by Bacolod’s Mayor Evelio Leonardia upon accepting the sister-hood agreement:

  • “We are so honored and we will live up to the expectation of this sisterhood agreement. (Binay) mentioned the hospitalization and scholarship but I am not ready to counter that this time. But to establish the relationship, we will accept those offers.”

The potential for corruption, ala the Mafia families

It is instructional to look at Mafia families in Italy and the United States to understand how networks, based on power, favor and crime, became so successful. It is the same organizational framework that drug dealers use around the world. There are four important components to the organization:

  • A powerful family
  • A wide-ranging business enterprise (used to launder cash, for example)
  • A system of favors granted and debts created
  • The overlay of crime on legitimate businesses as a shadow enterprise

Let’s look at the Binay family in the context of what we are hearing about how Makati was run during Jejomar Binay’s term, and put it together with an extensive network of sister cities. Here’s what we have:

  • A powerful family
  • A wide-ranging civic enterprise (sister cities)
  • A system of favors granted and debts created
  • The alleged overlay of crime on legitimate civic activities as a shadow enterprise. It takes little extension of imagination to believe that sister city mayors are tangibly rewarded for their obeisance.

Cash is a wonderful medium, eh? No receipts, no computer records, very tangible when received.

The power of local endorsements

I wonder if local citizens realize what sister city status means in terms of their city conceding direction to external interests. Makati has delivered favors to their elected officials . . . and debts have been created, whether soft or hard. Hard means a Binay endorsement is made during elections. Harder yet is vote buying.

“There is no such thing as a ‘free’ lunch.”

Scholarships at Makati schools and access to Makati hospitals do not come without attached expectations.

How the plan may break down

The Binay plan to reach the Palace can break down with broader awareness of what is happening:

  • When news publishers, reporters, and columnists are named and shamed for being pawns. When their professional reputation is placed in jeopardy.
  • When citizens of sister cities demand independence from a corrupt Makati and outside interference in their own elections.
  • When people start to turn away from a Binay association because they do not want to be stained themselves.

We see some pressure being applied on media through a growing number of “name and shame” articles. The Senate inquisitors are making sure the headlines are shockeers. It is hard for the press to bury the story. The Binay media strategy is being rebutted.

We also see people starting to turn away from the Vice President. He is likely finding it very difficult to identify a reputable vice presidential candidate to accompany him on his 2016 presidential run.

But we don’t see much visibility to the sister city program which is the core strength of the Binay clan’s popularity and vote-gathering prowess.

I think local citizens need to go be aware of whether or not their community is attached to the Makati way of doing business . . . and in obeisance to Jejomar Binay.

My province, Biliran Province, is a sister LGU of Makati. That doesn’t surprise me, as the operating methods are similar. Also, the municipalities of Almeria, Kawayan and Caibiran are sisters. Only the major municipalities of Naval and Biliran are not obeisant. The upshot is that over half the entire voting population will be urged . . . softly or hardly . . . to vote for Jejomar Binay. He would likely dominate here.

I reckon (Americanism derived from the old wild west) . . .  I reckon it would be wise for political opponents of Mr. Binay to start working to break these sister city allegiances. Name them, shame them. Ask them why they have sold their government’s integrity . . . nay, their COMMUNITY’S integrity . . . to Jejomar Binay.

__________________

Addendum

Sample Sisterhood Agreement

 

Comments
207 Responses to “The Binay road to power”
  1. macspeed says:

    @Joe Am
    Those actions from VP Binay when he was still a mayor were marketing techniques one may call it mafia way or say look ahead plan for 10 or more years. His previous advisor and maybe still the same advisors were those or are those who are being hired by companies or industries to maintain growth say for 20years management. If the current accusations of VP Binay will not find him guilty, he will be more stronger as 2016 nears.
    .
    Power and favor are hard to prove as evidence for corruption. The parking lot overpricing is the only way to lock VP Binay to corruption, if the court can find evidences linking VP Binay.
    .
    However, VP Binay candidacy is somehow tainted, a novice such as Chiz Escudero or Grace Poe or Ping Lacson or Alan Peter Cayetano or Mirriam Defensor or Manny VIllar may upset VP Binay point of winning, to do that, anyone of them should now hire those management similar to VP Binay handlers, it may cost millions, but it has to be done to win…Election time becomes a lucrative business.

    • Joe America says:

      I think the hearings are doing major damage. It all depends on how mayors see it, though. If they believe it is in their personal best interest to keep the close association with Binay in case he wins, then they will still endorse him. The upside is too good to break off at this early stage. If they can ride out the storm, and Binay wins, they are sitting pretty. If they break from Binay, there is little upside.

      • rollyvelarde says:

        In my layman’s commonsensical point of view, politics has prevented the Filipinos from electing worthy officials. Politics being ruled by the elite has all the machinations and means to manipulate the minds of poor FIlipinos. These poor people cling to the hope that a hero will come to save them from their hellish life just like in the movies – a favorite pass time the poor can at least afford. Many are also so engrossed in telenovelas (soap operas), game shows, etc. No wonder many celebrities; naive of the responsibilities of the position they sought for; are elected to office . Mass media, also controlled by the elite are used clandestinely to shape and influence the minds of the masses. One need not have a P.H. D. to sense this. In this internet age, slowly, the masses are given hope to see outside the box. To see things in different perspectives although the old conditioning continue to fetter them to a controlled mindset. In time, especially the youth, will learn how to discern, choose wisely and decide intelligently. Right now, we will remain the victims of politics unless we seek truth thru our own study, investigation, understanding, conclusion, intuition…where other’s opinions are taken as they are, without prejudice.

        • Joe America says:

          I think you are right on target, rolly. The real question is, how extensive is the reach of the internet? If it can’t break through the local patronages, it won’t help much in 2016. Binay has built an election machine at local levels.

          • Thomas Alfaro 64k says:

            Unfortunately home PC and internet service penetration in the Philippines is at the 20’s, percentage wise. Although it is the “texting capital of the world”, information dissemination is very low. There are a lot more qualified people out there who can run the country better, given the chance. But like the comment above says, ” politics has prevented the Filipinos from electing worthy officials. Politics being ruled by the elite has all the machinations and means to manipulate the minds of poor FIlipinos.”.

          • rollyvelarde says:

            Google one is coming this last quarter to the Philippines at US$ 100.00 . Android phones will only get cheaper. Just like the dream of Bill Gates to bring PC to the masses the world will truly be connected except when government intervenes. Luckily the inventor of the world wide web had this unselfish vision.

            • Joe America says:

              That is good news. Now we have to organize the connections into a political force, eh?

              • rollyvelarde says:

                How did Obama win? Now, the comparison goes beyond color. I’d rather put my trust on VP Binay, anytime or until he is found guilty beyond reasonable doubt He has done good to Makati and hopefully he can replicate it nationwide, if and when he becomes President. This is aside from the fact he is in his spiritual age. I am inclined to believe the divine in him will be more dominant in his day to day affairs. But more importantly, his stewardship of Makati has been highly commendable even if he is being condemned as a corrupt official by his presidential opponents and detractors,with questionable intentions, and characters; Point of fact, the principal accuser be was caught lying about his estimate of the cake being given away in Makati. At the very least, VP Binay would have not been nominated in 2006 as the Best Mayors of the World.if his character was in suspicion. Politics will always be business and for vested interests. Ergo, IMO, VP Binay has the best track record and qualifications among other presidentiables. Why not scrutinize his performance as vice president and the job he is tasked to do? Would this not be more credible and justifiable? As I see it and I confer what VP Binay said in his speech yesterday[ The allegations being hurled against him will not stand up in court. And the court is the proper forum and not the senate.

              • Joe America says:

                Good to have a Binay supporter here to balance out the rest of us. I shall refrain from getting into an argument and let your comment stand.

              • This is in replly to rollyelarde re-cake business. I have a friend who lives at Makati. She is a senior citizen like me. She said the cake that she receives used to be woth 1000 pesos, but at present it costs 1500 pesos. I hope this will clear your doubts and for the rest of the Filipino people.

    • Joe America says:

      That article fits perfectly with this blog. Thanks. Philippine national politics is really the accumulation of lots of local politics. Don Corleone would for sure see the elegance of the Binay work. I actually admire what Jejomar Binay has done, in that respect. Focus. Motivation. Persistence. Discipline. Skill. One can question the scraping off of taxpayer money, but one can also respond, “hey, that’s the way things are done hereabouts. Go back to your own politically dysfunctional American home.”

  2. Cornball says:

    Truckloads of cash dumped at the COMELEC Commisioners’ office and problem solved for the next President of the Philippines. Ever wondered why Nancy is immovable at number 5 last Senatorial election? They only need chump change for PR.

    • Joe America says:

      That is possibly true. But that is highly vulnerable to investigation. The network of sister cities is wholly legal, indeed, healthy in many respects. And an occasional corruption flare-up here or there is acceptable roughness around the edges. So I don’t think it is necessary to be that blatantly crooked for Binay to win the election.

  3. VP Binay as well as Nancy had been quoted repeating the old political cliche, “Politics is addition” in various broadsheets. The Binays are mathematical geniuses as evidenced by Joe Am’s exhibit A.

    The cake and movie tickets given to the seniors in Makati looks benign and sweet on the surface. One’s initial reaction to it is, “Awww, that is so thoughtful.” Dig a little deeper and you get a feeling that it is a veiled political strategy. Why? Elders are respected in the Filipino culture. The oldest member of the family is considered a fount of wisdom. Everybody listens to Lolo and Lola. No wonder smart Filipino men who want to court a woman usually develop a good rapport with her family elders before breaching their real intention. The Filipino elders often have the power to deliver the goods for those they favor. In politics, winning the elders often translates to garnering the whole families’ votes. With addition of Lolo and/or Lola, the ROI multiplies with compound interests. Sheer evil genius. If this outward show of respect and attention for the seniors is a calculated move, then shame on the Binays. If it is not, more power to them.

    • Joe America says:

      AH!!!!! A fourth plank in the overall plan. Be sweet, and respectful, to seniors. Thanks for raising that.

    • rollyvelarde says:

      Aside from the cake, Lola and Lolo have more perks like monthly allowances, free movies, 20 % discounts, free burials… Allowing the old folks to age gracefully worry free. Now put some color to it and the essence is gone. Damn if you do, damn if you don’t. I think VP Binay can say-“damn it to your hearts content. I care for our old.” Many sister cities try to replicate this but could not sustain it.

      • Joe America says:

        They can’t sustain it for exactly the same reason that Mr. Binay can’t replicate Makati for the nation as a whole. The ratio of business income to population in Makati is huge. The nation, on the other hand, is heavy up with poor people, and there simply is not enough tax money generated to elevate them to decent income. Growing the economy takes time . . . and allowing corruption to suck off the money intended for production will kill that growth.

      • dodong says:

        Monthly allowance varies from how well you are connected to MAkati officials and how you show your loyality to the Binay’s and about the cake they are giving away for SC it should not even cost 200 pesos based on the quality, size and taste of the cake . The Makati Govt. could have it on a much cheaper price specially that they will be requiring it on a regular basis and a great number of volume. I myself was surprise to know that the price of the cake was more than 200 pesos when the price was reveal in the senate.

        • Joe America says:

          That’s an interesting bit of scene-setting. That generosity is received by those who are loyal. It’s rather like Enrile’s gifting of huge Christmas bonuses to his associates, except for those who gave him argument. Same vindictive underlying motive.

    • Not everybody listens to Lolo and Lola now. In fact it is the other way around because the children and grandchildren are well informed of what’s happening. in fact in the last election I was going to vote Binay but my son enumerated to me the wealth amassed by Binay, So I did not vote him.

  4. manuel buencamino says:

    Why do the Binays dominate Makati politics? They follow a century-old model.
    “Tammany Hall certainly was guilty of many of the offenses arraigned against it. But those flaws should not overshadow Tammany’s undoubted virtues. The machine succeeded not simply because it could round up votes. It succeeded because it was unafraid of the grunt work of retail politics and because it rarely lost touch with its voters.”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/18/opinion/the-forgotten-virtues-of-tammany-hall.html?_r=2

    The sister city project is Tammany Hall expanded. Binay like Boss Tweed has never shied away from “the grunt work of retail politics” and has maintained an organization that has its fingers on his voters’ pulses.

    • Joe America says:

      I love that “Boss Tweed” tag for Jejomar Binay. It conveys a certain amount of class along with the power.

      Somewhere around here I have a draft blog that is entitled “Why do we care if Binay gets rich if the Philippines soars like Makati?”.

      Corruption is caused in part by the poor pay scales in government. But we can’t pay more because the nation is poor. The nation is poor because corruption sucks off the money that could be invested to build wealth.

      The trick is how to break that cycle. So if corruption as the “executive bonus plan” for Philippine leaders is resulting it the bad performance of the nation, how might Binay, who evidently gets good bonuses, break the cycle? If he kept the system in place, presumably we’d continue to get bad overall results. If he said “I’m the only guy entitled to a lavish bonus, the rest of you clean up your acts or scale them back so we can get this nation productive”, hey, add my hypothetical vote to Binay’s total. He is just a business executive very skilled at what he does.

      What kind of results do you think the nation would get under Binay leadership?

      • brianitus says:

        Where there are bottlenecks, there is an enterprising a-hole speeding things up. The trick is making sure that the a-hole has some integrity in him while the system works to get rid of a bottleneck.

        • Joe America says:

          We need an enterprising a-hole to run for president. One with integrity. That’s my takeaway. 😀

          • Joe America says:

            Senator Alan Cayetano best fits that bill, I think, based on his hearing role. He can be downright mean, but always with a smile, always well prepared, always marching to a goal.

          • yanus says:

            duterte or grace poe?

            • Joe America says:

              Duterte is too much the loose cannon for me. I’d be afraid we’d be at war with China a week after he took office. Poe is proving to be very mild, both in her work and aspirations toward the presidency. I like Cayetano’s approach at the hearings. Prepared. A plan in mind. Sharp questions and handling of objections. Not a softie.

              • I also like Cayetano. He is well prepare all the time. and the questions althought sometimes not relevant to me at the start, it targets the issue at the end.

              • Joe America says:

                Welcome to the blog, Linda. Yes, I’m surprised the survey rating on him did not rise. Perhaps people are not watching the hearing like we are. I actually like his “attack” fame of mind, too. I imagine him chairing a cabinet meeting, and I don’t think he would stand for a sloppy or poorly thought-out presentation by his secretaries.

      • manuel buencamino says:

        I am not endorsing executive pay plans. I picked up the quote from the article I linked.

        I was simply citing how Binay has managed to stay on top in Makati. He, like Boss Tweed, understands that “all politics is local” and voters are more appreciative of politicians who attend to their immediate needs.

        Now there are other ways to attend to a constituents’ immediate needs without resorting to corrupt practices and that’s what leaders like Aquino are trying to do.

        But it is undeniable that the Tammany Hall system – unafraid of the grunt work of retail politics and not losing touch with its voters – is the essence of political success.

        We do have to eliminate bribery and leakages from that equation but a leader should be able to use all legal carrots and sticks to govern, otherwise we slide down to authoritarian rule.

      • rollyvelarde says:

        Hopefully with the VP’s established sister cities connection, cooperation will be more firm and doable. The problems of the Philippines are gargantuan and complex. Our National debt is into Trillions of dollars and we cannot afford to borrow more. Without unity and cooperation, no government program would succeed.

  5. edgar lores says:

    *******
    This is part of what the VP will have to say today:

    Friends, Filipinos, Countrymen,

    Lend me your ears. I have come to bury myself.

    Nancy has told you and Junjun has showed you that we – the Binays – are here to serve. The family motto is service. Yes, service and nothing but… self-service.

    *****

  6. gerverg1885 says:

    One thing that must not be forgotten was the way Jejomar Binay used Makati City taxpayer’s money in furtherance of his political ambitions and the silence of those rich taxpayers who should have made moves to question him about that program. Nobody aside from his family benefits/benefited from such an ingenious plan that only an evil mind can concoct and execute.

    And one more thing that must not be forgotten was how he was able to build a mansion when he was mayor of Makati city or even after members of his family succeeded him. Was the salary of such a rich city so big for them to be able to afford a property that only the rich citizens of Makati can acquire? Did the COA make any effort to look into this matter which escaped even the attention of Professor Winnie (Mareng Winnie) Monsod?

    I think Senator Nancy Binay is already complaining to her father about her role now as the first line of defense in the Senate inquiry because she did not prepare for it, or she was not made to prepare for it when she ran for the position.

    • Joe America says:

      See my comment to manuel buencamino. One can rationalize to believe that corruption is simply an executive pay plan for a nation that expects so much of leaders but pays so little. At issue is the RESULTS. Under Binay, would the Philippines continue to struggle, or would is soar like Makati?

      • chit navarro says:

        Makati soars not because of the Binay machinery but ebcause it is the business centre of the country. Head offices of most big business are located here and pay taxes, etc. Real estate taxes and business taxes must be in billions and the city population is just about 500,000. More than enough money to make the residents feel that they are taken cared of properly by their city government and do not care at all how much revenue the government really has for their welfare.

        Definitely, our country will struggle harder under a BInay reign because there will be over a hundred million citizens to care for and not enough income from the national government. Unless he will just stop servicing foreign loans OR he will sell our country to the Chinese, bit by bit.

      • The real reason why Makati is the richest city in PI today are the Zobel de Ayalas/Roxas’ clan. These illustrados of German and Spanish heritage “made” Makati and are still the driving force of this city. The $64 question is: Why did the Makati royalties kept quiet about the corruption in “their” city? You read that right: I believe the Binays do not “own” Makati, the Zobel de Ayalas/Roxas’ do.

        • Joe America says:

          Ah, good point. I wish the popular press would do an interview with those honchos to see what they think about all this. They are the enablers, it seems to me. Maybe they just like the way the city is greased for approval of their projects, and they underwrite it as an acceptable business expense.

          • manuel buencamino says:

            Enablers is the correct description of those people.

          • Cory Hipolito says:

            The best thing that can happen to us is for one or two businessmen to expose Binay. There are a lot of condos that were built for the past ten years. It is common knowledge that Binay was given units in exchange for permits. I am calling the Makati Businessmen to responsibility and show us that they love the Filipinos and the Philippines. By keeping quiet, they will put us in danger of having Binay as president.

            • Joe America says:

              That is probably a very big step to take, considering the power that Binay has to make or break someone. Rather like going against the Godfather. But it would certainly make a huge statement for the well-being of the Philippines.

            • rollyvelarde says:

              I hope someone with solid evidence do come out after thirty years of VP Binay in government. Likewise, I hope if there is no solid evidence, “Praise the Lord.”

            • Tess Dumana says:

              The story being told is that the unit/s is/are a prerequisite to getting a building permit. Which could explain why the Binays have units in Rockwell and other high-end condos in Makati. I hope the building owners will have the conscience, and the balls, to expose the practice.

              • Joe America says:

                I think it is unlikely. They are like bystanders who don’t want to get involved. There is no way they can gain by speaking up because they’d be criticized for engaging in the practice. For them, giving a unit away is a small price to pay for big riches.

          • rollyvelarde says:

            I thought it was good governance why Makati thrives. Business flourished because of sound policies, favorable business climate, peace and order, well planned infrastructure, tax incentives, etal. In short a healthy and symbiotic relationship between business and government trickled down to the citizens of Makati. Isn’t this a reasonable perspective.

            • Joe America says:

              rolly, I expressed appreciation for your visit and initial position paper in favor of Binay for president. The difficulty we have is that you do not have the information available to encourage those who are wary of VP Binay to set aside their mistrust, and no one here has the wherewithal to convince you that your stand is perhaps inadvisable. The positions are clear, and these relentless head on collisions are why I did not wish to try to engage you early on. You are here as an advocate, and a little of that is fine. But at some point you have to offer up respect for those who hold a different position than you do, or risk being categorized a troll. I’d rather you retained your credibility for participation in other issues, even though there is disagreement on this one. I don’t want my blog to become a firing range for people who hold unbending views to fire at will, with no outcome other than the firing.

              • rollyvelarde says:

                I was in the impression your blog welcomes opposing opinions even if it does not conform to yours. Well it is your blog and thank you for not wasting my time here.

              • Joe America says:

                There is a distinction between dialogue and advocacy. I welcome opposing opinions within the framework of dialogue, which contains healthy doses of listening and even a willingness to change views when new information or arguments are presented. Advocacy generally lacks the willingness to listen, is intent only to oppose, and frequently descends into anger and insult because it is, at its human core, unreasonable. You are welcome to return when you grasp the distinction and are willing to engage in dialogue.

              • edgar lores says:

                *******
                Good answer.

                At bottom, I don’t mind advocacy if the reasons advanced are logical, cogent and well thought out. Especially if the reasons come out of left field, when there is insight. Those are killers.

                Limited perspectives I can accept because we all are, to a great degree, ignorant. And the reason for dialogue is, after all, to lift perspective and to initiate discovery.

                It’s the lies, half-truths, and half-assed justifications that are advanced for pure manipulation that raise my hackles.
                *****

              • rollyvelarde says:

                I am amused by your parameters of a dialogue and an advocacy. If you will review my thread on this topic, my defense on VP Binay are public information. I was merely restating it for better appreciation and understanding or at least to find a solid evidence that will prove all these accusations against VP Binay. If we turn the tables,around and look at how much some of the bloggers here despises VP Binay and are so determined to put him away, I can also call that an advocacy just the same like what is being labeled on me. Worse, I am now accused of being a troll of VP Binay just because of my posts here; They put down the opinion of Atty. Roque as if they can read the minds of people and are experts in analyzing character without talking or interviewing Atty. Roque on this regard . So where is the bias?

                Buddha said ” Beware of the half truth. You may have gotten hold of the wrong half.”

                My position are as follows: the senate hearing is biased and self serving, there are more important works that the SBRC can focus on like the DAP, FOI, Power Crisis, Agrarian Reform, MRt, Flooding, etal; these allegations are old stories and are rehash to smear VP Binay, no concrete evidence except perceived truths which are by itself half truths and inconclusive, a case filed against VP Binay on his questionable wealth has been dismissed thereby an explanation in toto; the senate blue ribbon is not the proper forum; his achievements in Makati are unprecedented and commended here and abroad; his principal accusers have been caught lying under oath; his other accusers are of questionable character and have admitted to a crime; The Binay Family were all voted to office. All allegations and accusations of crime or corruption has to be proven in court. If we cannot trust our justice system, we might as well abolish it. Our opinions on this topic are just as that and in the end the people will decide None of us has the authority to truth and speak for the people. Lastly, I am not a troll of VP Binay nor hold an advocacy of defending VP Binay. I am a devil’s advocate.

              • Joe America says:

                Very good. Thanks for the perspective.

    • brianitus says:

      I think Makati can fit that old “Occupy” argument of “99% poor, 1% wealthy.” With some of the wealthy and middle still supporting Binay for benefits…good luck getting rid of the Binays.

      • dodong says:

        It will be very difficult to removed Binay in Makati. for they had built a strong foundation of their dynasty from Barangay Captain who became rich due to the Binay System implemented in Makati and loyalist of Binay who received a monthly allowance from Makati Govt. just to be loyal and spread the words how generous and concern the Binay’s are to its constituents. Imagine them doing this in 27 years how many makati residents have benefited from this system, As Joker will say Evil Genius

  7. bantay says:

    Binay Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) ??

    balanced report or Binay press release? judge for yourself…


    Inquirer – CHRISTINE O. AVENDAÑO
    http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/636525/binay-to-explain-pricing-of-makati-parking-building-next-week
    http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/635460/binay-camp-on-accusers-triumvirate-of-corruption
    http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/633686/binay-ready-to-campaign-win-govern


    Inquirer – CONRADO DE QUIROS
    http://opinion.inquirer.net/77840/nota
    http://opinion.inquirer.net/78083/hilaw
    http://opinion.inquirer.net/78254/up-in-the-air


    Manila Bulletin – BEN ROSARIO
    http://www.mb.com.ph/binay-questions-coa-plan-on-building-audit/
    http://www.mb.com.ph/drilon-dared-to-take-hairstyle-challenge/
    http://www.mb.com.ph/be-more-cautious-in-parking-building-probe-senate-urged/


    Manila Bulletin – JC BELLO RUIZ
    http://www.mb.com.ph/binay-camp-denies-rumors-vp-resigning-from-cabinet/
    http://www.mb.com.ph/binay-ready-to-face-impeachment-remulla/
    http://www.mb.com.ph/vp-binay-to-focus-on-govt-duties/
    http://www.mb.com.ph/vp-binay-ready-to-face-ombudsman/


    Philippine Star – JOSE RODEL CLAPANO
    http://www.philstar.com/headlines/2014/09/14/1368908/binay-camp-questions-govt-protection-mercado-lawyer
    http://www.philstar.com/headlines/2014/09/03/1364842/binay-remains-focused-job-amid-inquiry
    http://www.philstar.com/headlines/2014/08/29/1362969/trillanes-urged-admit-bullying-contractor


    Interaksyon – ERNIE REYES
    http://www.interaksyon.com/article/95312/binay-to-refute-makati-building-raps-in-monday-speech-but-wont-face-senate—spokesman
    http://www.interaksyon.com/article/95209/makati-city-hall-2–witness-refutes-bidder-trapped-in-elevator-account
    http://www.interaksyon.com/article/95186/minority-bloc-boycotts-senate-probe-on-p2-7-billion-makati-parking-building


    ABS-CBN News – (no by-line)
    http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/09/13/14/vp-binays-camp-hits-questionable-morals-accusers
    http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/09/07/14/presidency-destiny-gods-will-nancy-binay
    http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/09/05/14/binay-camp-wheres-evidence-rigging
    http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/09/02/14/binay-camp-blasts-experts-has-own-expert-vs-overpricing
    http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/09/01/14/una-trillanes-interior-decorator-na-rin


    (pls add more…)

  8. gerverg1885 says:

    The only thing that Jejomar Binay did not copy from Joseph Estrada is that sisterhood of Makati city to other cities nationwide. Aside from that mansion (Estrada has several), he admitted to having an extramarital affair(or could it be several women?). His idea of a family political dynasty also came from his maestro.

    Could we expect something different from the Estrada presidency once he gets elected if he could survive the current storm that would be the hindrance to his ambition?

    • Joe America says:

      Yeah, that is the question. If ambition inspired his greed, would he no longer have that greed once his goal of power is attained? I rather think the greed would shift from money to more power. As with most self-declared rulers of the past.

    • rollyvelarde says:

      VP Binay is a lawyer and ERAP is an actor? VP Binay is not a drinker, not a gambler, sleeps early, exercises? What are we comparing???

  9. Stirrings says:

    Cultivate dependency and you will be king in this country. Perhaps this is the kind of “inclusive growth” Binay’s journalists and leftists admirers are asking the President to achieve.

  10. brianitus says:

    Uncle Joe,

    Over dinner, my misis and I were discussing about Binay. i thought, “How could Binay, someone who fought Marcos, end up being this way — allegedly so corrupt?” Did he wake up one day, “There’s a lot of money to be made in Makati! Let’s start a dynasty business!” Did he even bother to ask himself when he’ll quit? I mean, if all of these allegations were true, then he should go to rehab because he’s so addicted to money and power.

    I like what Mr. Buencamino put down in his comment above. Retail politics. I think that is the root of it. The press can get him, but he can still win. Remember Erap? With all that negative press against him, he won as president in ’98, almost did again in 2010, and won as mayor of Manila in the last elections. The people who voted for Erap are most likely the same kind people who vote for Binay. They like him because they have use for him.

    If you really want to get Binay, don’t bring a “knife to a gunfight.” That Makati building is still a knife, imho, unless someone starts bringing out hard evidence. The PDAF scam went to court because of the paper trail provided by Mr. Luy. Is there anything of that magnitude in the case of Binay? For someone who’s a hero to some people, the evidence should be really damning.

    If someone is crazy enough to go to the grassroots and start something there, they should do so. Think of termites attacking the foundation of Binay power in Makati. Sow discontent among the poor people that the Binays are supposedly taking advantage of.

    Anyway, that’s just me on three cups of coffee in an hour and a half.

    Cheers!

    Brianitus

    • Joe America says:

      Cheers, and a tip o’the cup to ye on the pithy synthesis.

      • rollyvelarde says:

        Who removed Erap and placed GMA at the helm. Who’s worse; ERAP or GMA? The same people who got rid of ERAP is now trying to get rid of VP Binay because they know better as in GMA. I wonder???

    • manuel buencamino says:

      Binay has an incredibly efficient ward leader system. That’s why he has his finger on the pulse of his constituency. Any sign of discontent is reported to him by his ward leaders and he deals with it immediately, either through intimidation or courtship.

      • brianitus says:

        Can anyone beat that? Is sending the man to jail the only way to beat him?

        • rollyvelarde says:

          If VP Binay is this good in manipulation of power, incredibly efficient ward leader, Godfather, etc… minus all the adverse accusations and allegations, don’t you think he will be a good President to the pasaway (hard headed) Filipinos. Ever wondered why so many excel abroad and are so disciplined outside the Philippines? Strong, firm, disciplined leadership?

          • Joe America says:

            That is the question. What do we care how rich Mr. Binay gets, or how he gets rich, eh? As long as he takes care of things like Makati.

            I was going to do a blog to that point, but I think it has been adequately been addressed earlier in this thread by readers.

            The basic answer was, with only 500,000 residents and tremendous tax base, no one would miss Mr. Binay’s skimming from Makati. And investors who were also getting rich, could turn a blind eye. It is different when he is running a nation and everyone up and down the line is doing that and there are 100 million people, most very much in need. It is back to a nation of power and favor, rather than earnest work.

          • brianitus says:

            Minus all the accusations? He might need to change his name.

            Seriously, we can do better without wishing for the Lord of Makati to change his stripes. He can have prison stripes if he wishes for them, too/:)

            And yes, Filipinos can excel without him. Sorry for being blunt. As a self-motivated Filipino, I don’t need Binay or Binays for that matter.

            Why do Filipinos excel abroad? Hmm, maybe because they have a chance to excel and there’s a system that promotes it?

      • joji umali says:

        That being mayor of very rich city plus being an activist lawyer during the Marcos era and a protector during the Cory’s term made the difference in edging out Mar Roxas. But if the media and senate continue the pressure of exposing the corruption during his term, he will be like Sen Manny Villar who was very popular and in fact topped the pre-election survey only to end losing even to Erap in 2010 election. The reason of his losing the presidency was the senate’s pressure to explain his insertion of P200mil on his pet project and diversion of Dang Hari road to benefit his subdivision which alarmed many voters.

      • dodong says:

        Right on the money

  11. gerverg1885 says:

    “A terrible cycle then develops where our lives become about one thing, and one thing only. More. More money. More power. More fame. More sex. More drugs. More alcohol. Our spirits become addicted to distractions the way our bodies become addicted to alcohol.”

    This excerpt from the book of Richard E. Howard titled ‘Knowing Joy And Peace In A fallen World’ sums up what happens to anybody like Binay who could not resist his lust and desire for worldly things and could no longer turn his back from the overpowering desires of getting more.

    I hope his enemies now who are his former close friends would also reveal his properties in other places, particularly in his home province of Batangas, where I heard he has a big poultry and piggery and a beach resort.

  12. Dolly Gonzales says:

    Most sickening, I find, is the way the elderly are used – they’re given crumbs, and this is labeled as ‘respect.’

    Soon after the first Senate hearing, after the “Red Ribbon testimony,” a TV news report featured a couple of elderly Makati residents. One had just received a cake, and looked very touched. Then another was asked how she felt about the senate hearing and the claim that Makati cakes for senior citizens were overpriced. She looked really sad, teary-eyed, as if she felt that some people were begrudging her that small token of respect.

    It was heartbreaking. 😦 It just made one feel almost murderous at the heartlessness of people like Binay, his aides and media minions who, even then, were shamelessly exploiting these senior citizens to further Binay’s personal ambition. Unforgiveable.

    • Joe America says:

      Zing. That is the shame, indeed. Manipulative every step of the way. I wonder when mayors of sister cities will awaken to the idea that they are being used. Maybe they get paid too much to reach that awakening.

      • Dolly Gonzales says:

        You’re so right about the mayors of sister cities! The sad fact is, even now, they can successfully supply the Binay votes. 😦

        I’ve noticed, too… For the next hearing, Pimentel et al issued a subpoena to Mayor Binay, and an invitation to the VP which he can decline with no negative consequences. If he accepts, though, the entire session will be devoted to his testimony.

        The subtle-but-powerful squeeze: 🙂
        VP Binay can choose to appear and save his son from Cayetano’s grilling (at least for the next hearing), OR he can let his son take the blows meant for him.

        • Joe America says:

          Judging by the discussion threads, all the venom directed at PDAF and DAP has shifted and the Vice President is clearly the target. His support network is shaking – journalists, cake-lovers, and acquaintanceships – the only one not yet in the spotlight is sister cities.

          • Dolly Gonzales says:

            cake-lovers! 🙂 haha… Come to think of it, have they provided documents regarding the cakes? I could be wrong, but the one receipt produced was from early this year, after inquiries were made regarding the eventually-filed plunder case. Where are the ones from the beginning that can prove it’s not a Binay-family business?

          • Dolly Gonzales says:

            P.S.
            Will a list of sister cities (and corresponding benefits) help? Maybe one that reveals how mayors of those sister cities gain more from it than their constituents?

            Then, maybe the list can be used by political opponents…

            • Joe America says:

              One of the articles has a list of LGUs that are sisters of Makati as of 2012. It would be interesting to find out how many people have taken Makati up on the hospitalization and scholarship programs. And who, exactly benefited . . . residents or relatives of the mayor. That would be hard to track I think. A little too much for me to take on. For sure, political opponents in each community could dig for dirt . . .

        • edgar lores says:

          *******
          Trillanes, with his hooded eyes and threatening deportment, should request Pimentel, with his often absent-minded mien, to invite Nancy to the hearing. She is now a “person of interest” as the police say.

          Then Cayetano, with his open face and seemingly innocuous demeanor, should interrogate her, grilling her ever so slowly, basting her with friendly companera’s and panera’s.

          And Nancy, with her impolite, impatient and impetuous manner, should rapidly speak “Italian”, while referring now and then to her iPhone.

          I can just imagine it. What a show-stopper that would be!
          *****

          • Dolly Gonzales says:

            Haha, what a scene, with Nancy Binay 🙂

            Pimentel seems to be playing chummy good-cop to Trillanes’ thuggish bad-cop and Cayetano’s baby-faced bad-cop. Effective, especially when Pimentel suavely got Hilmarc’s prickly-defensive CEO to admit it was unusual for complete building plans not to be provided from the start.

            Funny how the VP’s camp is viciously attacking Trillanes and Cayetano, but practically thanking Pimentel.

  13. josephivo says:

    The main reason I don’t like Binay as president is very personal, it is his age. He will be 74 when he starts, 80 when he retires. I feel comfortable in my new easy retirement life and I don’t need someone to tell me that I should be fit enough to run even a country. Physically, but also stay up to date with all new evolutions, technological, economical, soft science, globally… that’s not reading one book a month, but one book a day. But this is emotional, so let’s try to rationalize it.

    How can he be president in a country that no longer belongs to him, but to his children and grandchildren. His future is very limited, the next generation should be given the opportunity to take care of their future world. Of course he can advise with all his wisdom, but not lead and decide.

    Why do bishops and judges have to retire at 75? Why do Philips CEO’s have to retire at 62? In my alma mater professors have to retire at 65, they have to open positions for the next generation, to keep the best you have by offering perspective, the older generation should not block the genius of tomorrow.

    His formative years were in the ‘60ies, his paradigms were created ages ago. And yes everything was so much better at that time. But, no more dictators, the number of Filipinos more than doubled, communism gone, atomic scare gone, dominance of the US is less (because of China, unified Europe, BRIC’s), computer literacy more important than formal grammar. No more Kennedys, no more Beatles, no more trips to the moon, no more daily student rallies in the UP. No more open space in Makati to build on, Chinese taipans fully developed. His perspective is wrong. Why to promote a saddle maker when there are no more horses, only cars?

    • Joe America says:

      That’s very significant. It is the first argument I’ve read that says, corruption aside, he is not what a vibrant, growing Philippines needs. As I think about the importance of stability for the Philippines, and deal with the peculiar drag of aging myself, I’d have to agree with you.

  14. gerverg1885 says:

    Almost every government office and/or controlled corporation is overstaffed due to the culture of palakasan that had been the prevailing system ever since I could remember. The retirement age had not been lowered from 65 so you still see senior employees indulging in sidelines selling tocino or longganisa or lately, buying lotto tickets for their co-employees for a fee or whatever anything they could pass their time away. They have no more heavy responsibilities to attend to so they just wait for that eventful day.

    Well, maybe Binay can still do some important decision making if he could be the president but let’s hope that his brain would not be addled by the unrelenting pressure of the office plus his lust for power could prove to be too much for his age so it will be happy days for his VP whoever he might happen to be.

  15. Bert says:

    Just between the two of us, Joe. With the “Senate inquisition” and/or the Makati parking bldg. plunder hearings, Binay’s goose is cooked. He will be easy picking come 2016 and Pres. Noynoy will be president again. I don’t know if this will be good for the country but it’s the better alternative and I tend to approve of it. There is no other feasible way. You heard it first here.

  16. vicki129 says:

    great analysis! How do we now cascade this to the masses who still believe that Makati is where it is now because of the Binays. My small contribution is try to open the eyes of taxi drivers every time I ride one to my office. You’d be surprised how many of them believe that the Binays are “God’s gift to Makati” – makes me sick.

    • Joe America says:

      That is a big question because there seems to be a great wall between the educated urban class and the laboring class in the provinces, and the wall is held in place by mayors and governors loyal to Vice President Binay . . . for whatever reason. I think the attack on that wall has to come from presidential aspirants like Cayetano, Trillanes, Santiago . . . whoever it may be. The more damage done in the hearing, the more porous the wall becomes.

      I don’t exactly know how to get the great laboring masses to speak against Binay. He is their benefactor.

      • RHiro says:

        Economics+Politics+Culture is the superstructure of human society….From the time of tribal chiefs, witch doctors, shamans till today.

        “‘In his magnum opus The Moral Consequences of Economic Growth, Benjamin M. Friedman showed many examples of declining economic growth giving rise – with variable and sometimes long lags – to intolerance, aggressive nationalism, and war. He concluded that, “The value of a rising standard of living lies not just in the concrete improvements it brings to how individuals live but in how it shapes the social, political, and ultimately the moral character of a people.” Robert J. Shiller”

        The sad truth is 80% + of working Filipinos live on the razors edge of human survival…

        Their standard of survival rules their ethical and moral standards….Their social safety net are their elected autocrats…..

        Though an extreme example consider how Hitler and Goebbels romanced the German people during their disastrous economic collapse…Today look at ISIS after the collapse of the Iraqi State…

        Two economic/political observers of the Philippine scene who are among the best in the country have their own take on the VP.

        http://www.bworldonline.com/content.php?section=Opinion&title=is-the-economy-binay-resilient&id=94517

        http://www.bworldonline.com/content.php?section=Opinion&title=why-put-up-with-the-%E2%80%98bandit%E2%80%99-in-high-office?&id=94519

        PNoy was elected on the basis of the wretched style of transactional politics of GMA to keep herself in power. PNoy to his credit does not need the extreme style that GMA employed. But nevertheless has to play ball the the lower autocrats who are responsible for legislation… The uber powers the executive has over the purse gives him the autocratic powers….

        ”As with most dire apprehensions, the prudent thing is to confront them by imagining the worst case and proceeding from there. So it is proper to ask: just how bad might a Binay presidency be for the economy? I mean, really.”

        ”On the one hand, large global and local developments are now in place that not even a purely self-interested Machiavellian leader (not necessarily the Veep) can ignore or undo. Because these are likely to persist, PNoy’s successor will have an easier time and more room for action than he did. It is these trends that make the economy “Binay-resilient” — to a degree. But let’s break it down.”

        ”First, the large overseas remittances (bringing in more than $2 billion monthly) are certain to continue. This is the single biggest factor in an active current account and is the bedrock of the macroeconomy’s stability. The knock-on effects on international reserves, credit ratings, the economy’s borrowing costs, fiscal headspace, and so on, are obvious enough.”

        ”Second, unless the new administration screws up on this entirely (though, why should it?), the prudent conduct of monetary policy is also likely to continue. The Bangko Sentral, after all, is an independent authority whose policies have been among the least politicised in the past. (Say Tetangco, who has rendered outstanding service in the current administration, was originally an Arroyo appointee reappointed by PNoy.) One can presume therefore that the same smart balance between controlling inflation and maintaining a competitive currency will continue to be struck with the same guiding parameters.”

        ”Besides, the more important ingredient for low inflation is also difficult to change — the liberal and low-tariff trade regime that was the handiwork of many administrations, beginning with Aquino I. The only bout of serious inflation under this Aquino administration occurred in recent months and only because that single culprit commodity has not been trade-liberalised, namely rice.”

        ”Fourth, some important existing social programs created, continued or expanded by the present administration have so built up constituencies of their own that they would be immensely difficult to roll back. Among these, consider the conditional cash-transfer program (just try abolishing that now) and the expansion of PhilHealth coverage and benefits. Even the K+12 initiative, shaky as it is, pre-empts a significant portion of the budget and commands a critical minimum of any future administration’s attention. The same is true for the other by-now established pillars of the Philippine economy: tourism, direct foreign investment, the BPO sector, renascent manufactures.”

        ”Indeed even the administration’s failures and inadequacies will play a role in defining the agenda. Any future president — friendly or not — will inevitably want to distinguish itself by rising above the present one’s obvious shortcomings in, say, transport infrastructure and energy. Among the inevitable blessings is the likely replacement of the deadwood and non-performers that PNoy has curiously been reluctant to dismiss. In such ways, therefore, PNoy will already have influenced and defined the agenda for the next president, even one who may be entirely self-interested and cynically concerned only for political survival.”

        ”In short, the constituencies created by the administration’s reforms have been substantial. And while such constituents may not necessarily vote for PNoy’s anointed, they are certainly going to hold out for their rights and achieved entitlements, thus setting bounds on any future president’s rogue behavior.”

        One of the more important global conditions occurring is the ongoing process the government of China is undertaking to end their economic co-dependency with the U.S.

        Structural transformation requires sacrifices from a broad base of sectors and PNoy, Binay do not show the mettle required to lead that endeavor….

        Trying to legislate away dynastic politics is analogous to a bull with teats…

        Sixty years of failed economic policies have created this electoral autocratic system……..

        It is like the Spaniards/Americans never left…….the political system they imposed prevails…

        • Joe America says:

          Powerful critique. I laughed at the “bull with teats” line. The real challenge is how to get from point A to point B with the least amount of pain. I argue that stability is important, and the Philippines has never really had that. The Aquino government is a lot closer than most to crafting that. You argue for turning economic policies inside out, and I personally don’t know how to do that without chaos ensuing.

          • RHiro says:

            Successive governments since the 1940’s failed to push beneficial policies due to political immaturity. Hence it became pro forma to rely on policies pushed by the IMF-WB since they had the gold. Today the Aquino government is still using the playbook from the two zombie institutions…The already discredited Washington Consensus is akin to religious dogma among economic policy makers in the county.

            Even the establishment of the U.P. School of Economics served to propagate this policy group-think.

            Knowing the inherent weakness of the Philippine State, I suggest go for broke. Liberalize the capital markets for both domestic and foreign investors. Fully deregulate labor markets. Install the supremacy of the market place. Create a ”CAPITALIST UTOPIA” these are all policy recommendations of the IMF-WB and our domestic economic market fundamentalists in government…

            Remove all quantitative restrictions on agricultural products at the lower tariff rate.

            It was the structural lack of savings and not protectionism that got us here today. The beneficial conditions we have today are due in most part to OFW earnings.

            The major industrialized economies are still fighting deflationary forces brought about by financial excesses and technology based deflation.

            Wage and salary deflation is a world wide crises….

            • Joe America says:

              For sure, there are a lot of mechanisms in place that try to paste over natural market forces. I see it in the land ownership mess and the constitutional requirement of a horrid cooperative structure for management of farms. I’m starting to warm up to your ideas, but am constrained by my lack of knowledge about economics.

          • edgar lores says:

            *******
            In the interest of truth, from the Internet: “Yes, just like human males have teats and cows and heifers have teats. The only difference between the teats of bulls and cows is that the teats of a bull are non-functional.”

            Therefore, legislating away dynastic politics is to make something nonfunctional.
            *****

            • Joe America says:

              Ah, castration, I reckon. Yer speakin’ cowboy talk now.

              • RHiro says:

                Question? does the Philippines have a fully functional representative body????

                Or is it for show to comply with an ersatz democracy. Will the dynasties legislate themselves out of a job which they consider an entitlement….

              • Joe America says:

                Hahaha, does America? I think the Philippine House is too big and filled with mediocrity, and the senate is a tad on the small side and very political. I do think there is actually a willingness to deal with the dynasty problem, and the Binay clan shows exactly why that is important. They are motivators in that respect.

        • Joe America says:

          Powerful critique. I laughed at the “bull with teats” line. The real challenge is how to get from point A to point B with the least amount of pain. I argue that stability is important, and the Philippines has never really had that. The Aquino government is a lot closer than most to crafting that. You argue for turning economic policies inside out, and I personally don’t know how one does that without chaos ensuing.

  17. Myk Miguel says:

    I love reading all the intelligent comment in this blog. The best blog ever in regards to Binay mafia-like dealings. Yes! the citizens of sister cities must be awaken that their officials sold their souls to Binay.

    • Joe America says:

      Welcome to the blog, Myk. The main differences between this blog and others are that (a) the first priority of most here is the well-being of the Philippines, not a private interest, and (b) respect for differing views is maintained as long as respect is given. So the focus is mainly on issues rather than the personalities of the commenters. I’m happy you see the difference.

      Yes, the citizens of sister cities ought to be asking their leaders “why, exactly, are we tied to Makati? Has our allegiance been purchased with health care and scholarships? Or money under the table?”

  18. RHiro says:

    In 1998, when GMA came into power, the prime interest rate charged to business with sterling ratings was close to 18%. It started a downward trend then and today is below 7%……..

    Borrowing rates for government also plummeted during the same period…………

    In spite of the disastrous administration of GMA, even if government was careless with the budget, macroeconomic stability was maintained….

    Today government is having difficulty with spending as administrative capacities and capabilities are lacking……

    Looking at the names that stand to run with any success to replace PNoy, I suggest PNoy moves for a constitutional amendment to change the political system to a unitary system……..

    • Joe America says:

      “Today government is having difficulty with spending as administrative capacities and capabilities are lacking . . .” That is so true. There is so much money flying through the central government, the systems can’t keep pace (too much paper is used), and the people are not really trained to be disciplined in the spending and accounting of it. But I do see progress under Abad’s tutelage, and the 2015 budget will be more transparent, in concept. I don’t know about practice, because that has yet to be proved.

      I’d have to study unitary to see exactly how that would improve things. If the members remain ethically challenged, I don’t think a change means much.

      • RHiro says:

        Unitary system makes the budget process more transparent………Prime Minister plus Cabinet men will be on the floor of Congress to be questioned at all times…

        • Joe America says:

          That would be good if the Congress were held to a membership of less than 100 and voters stopped electing incompetents to office. Otherwise it would be like throwing the CEO to the ignorant hyenas whenever they appeared on the floor.

  19. gerverg1885 says:

    RHiro,

    You are right when you said that “The Spaniards/Americans never left…the political system they imposed prevails…

    Yes, especially the Spaniards who hung on to their haciendas and are now still politically and economically lording it over the landless citizens in towns and cities and are still fighting for their right to own lands that do not belong to them in the first place.

    Any move to amend the constitution that would not bring inclusive economic benefits to the majority, particularly those who are still longing for lands they could own and live on and die for and be totally free from the bonds of several generations of slavery that they inherited way back from their ancestors would be an exercise in futility.

    Our economists are all so proud about the progress made by the admin of Pnoy but I see no use of being called an economic success (or an economic tiger cub) when poor people are still complaining that they are still poor, that that so-called success is yet to be tasted by the folks in remote areas who do not understand GDP or any terms that economists use to mislead them from their abject conditions.

    Sorry if I got carried away by my emotions…

  20. RHiro says:

    After the shock and awe campaign in the Senate and with all the ancillary unverified information coming out, will it make a difference? The main target of the shock and awe campaign of the tandem in the Senate are the big businessman who finance elections.

    They like to finance winners.

    Escudero, Cayetano and Trillanes were three of the more outspoken critics of GMA. Radio/tv media created the aura around them…It is like marketing a product…They are busy testing sound-bytes and slogans…

    Powerful people influence the way people formulate their ideas about politics and economics.

    Not from the print media but the more powerful talk radio/tv on the local level….The local economic/political autocrats control the narrative.

    It has been that way since time immemorial….Governments/ Corporation everywhere operate from the effective template established by the Goebbels School of Communication.

    Ex:”In the 1940s moneyed interests made an initially successful effort to block the teaching of Keynesian economics, although Samuelson somehow slipped through. If you don’t think that similar things can happen now, you’re naive — and the rich are richer and more powerful now than they were then.”

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/09/15/cosmic-cato-koch-convergence/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=1&

    ”The ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else. Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influence, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist. Madmen in authority, who hear voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back. I am sure that the power of vested interests is vastly exaggerated compared with the gradual encroachment of ideas.

    ”It is ideas, not vested interests, which are dangerous for good or evil.”

    Does PNoy or Binay hear voices IN THE AIR?????

    • Joe America says:

      Frankly, I think both are rather babbling in the wind, PNoy for allowing Purisima to duck a senate hearing and rattling on about a second term, and Binay for manipulations beyond the pale (green building, foundations, comparable cost, world class, political charges) as he retires to this mansion or that, built on his mayor’s salary. I think the question is, has the senate sub-committee compelled the Ombudsman to investigate, and does the Ombudsman have the skills to dig up real dirt. If no charges are filed, Binay will likely waltz into the Palace whistling . . . well, whatever is whistled hereabouts when one has won big time.

      • RHiro says:

        A Complaint has been filed..Government being extremely reactive will wait to see if there is enough outrage generated by the shock and awe campaign at the Senate. Resources are scarce as the Ombudsman has the power with the COA, DOJ AND NBI TO INVESTIGATE…They will all await their leader to order it or someone who has ‘cojones’…..

        Right now no movement amongst the silent minority… However the closer we get to the elections and it will heat up as every communication plan of every presidential wannabe will be to destroy the front runner…

        Till today Villar is taking out the knives from his back mostly due to the C5 number they did on him…

        It takes money to fund a communications plan….fund raising is ongoing…

        There is no free ride……..

        Even the PDAF-Napoles scam was part of a masterful communications plan that cost a pretty penny…The DAP got caught in the feeding frenzy……

        • Joe America says:

          I don’t fully comprehend how the Ombudsman does its work, how it is staffed, what it looks for. The job is tough, rather a pre-screening of the validity of the case made by other units before it is submitted to the courts. I was reading an evaluation of various corruption-fighting agencies around the world, and the Ombudsman did not fare well. I wish the Bank Secrecy laws were re-written to allow investigators to probe bank accounts under court warrant. Personal testimonies are weak evidence.

          • RHiro says:

            It is one of the saddest and most tragic realities about finance and our nascent monetary society that very few people know the importance of the financial sector in the scheme of things. As it is only 14% of the population access credit through the formal institutions. Only 27% have bank accounts.

            The most powerful government institution is the BSP. Unfortunately the state through the BSP has defaulted this awesome power to the private sector…Banks and the BSP are the greatest enabler of corruption and criminality in this country…

  21. Filemon Padulas says:

    There’s a lot of talk about the sister cities of Makati. Who pays for these privileges? We Makati citizens.

    We are wowed by the Ospital ng Makati, the University of Makati, free movies, cakes, and “bonuses” for seniors. But if Makati funds were spent for Makati instead of the sister cities, we would probably have better facilities for the university, better teachers, and better medical equipment for OsMak.

  22. Cory Hipolito says:

    I suggest we talk to the laboring masses. I talk to the waiters, the taxi drivers, the sales clerks. One even told me “Sinisiraan lang si Binay!” I told her no, the Senate hearing is unfolding the truth. If each one of us talks to at least 10 persons, maybe somehow, we will be able to spread the truth about Binay.

  23. rejtatel says:

    I believe that PNoy’s true test of character is his actions or lack of it on VP Binay and his family.

    Talk is cheap, that is why when PNoy realized that Corona is hindering his anti-corruption efforts, he personally moved the heavens, and probably invoked the fires of hell, against Corona, and the rest is history.

    With regard to the Vice President however, it seems that PNoy is not taking a personal stand. Is it a matter of double standard anti-corruption campaign, where perceived enemies are handled personally, and allies and family friends are not?

    It is very easy to just say that he will just let the proper forum do its job as against the VP. But why would he be treated differently from Corona where PNoy himself personally handled the process in concert with the proper forum?

    This is my concern on this issue. I am a PNoy supporter all through out. But his lack of action vis-a vis the Binays is troubling.

    • Joe America says:

      I think the President is in a delicate situation for two reasons: (1) the VP was duly elected VP as a member of the opposition, so if he expects the VP to be on his team, he also has to be on the VP’s team, and (2) there are close family ties between the Aquinos and Binays. But the President’s exclusion of Binay from the list of guests at his recent speech, before leaving for Europe, says things have changed now, given the revelations in the Senate. So I think the break has occurred. It will just be handled delicately, through careful due process.

  24. tessie lebrun says:

    Omg! Delikado nga! Super grabe ang strategy nya (binay) para lang magiging presidente! Nakakatakot kung mangyari ito…aangkinin nya ang pilipinas pgngkataon, God forbid!! Magiging second Marcos sya!!! I hope & pray, at lahat ng pinoy na mahal ang bayan, dapat talaga mgdasal ng taimtim, na ‘wag nman sana tayo pasukin uli ng kadiliman, na ‘wag na tayo bigyan ng leader na sarili lng ang iniisip, kasama dyan pamilya nya at katulad nya na mapang-abuso, gahaman for money & power, mgdasal tayo ng milagro nakahit ano pang strategy ang gawin nya HE WILL FAIL!!!!!!! GOD BLESS THE PHILIPPINES!!!

  25. yanus says:

    for me Im not infavor of Binay for presidency. Hindi mapagkatiwalaan yan. Imagine he can talk straight in front of the media sa “mata ng Diyos at tao na hindi siya nagnakaw?” My Goodness ginamit pa niya ang Diyos… Maybe sa totoo di nya ninakaw yon.. really dahil kickbacks yon. Ang pagnanakaw wlang taong nakaalam pero kickbacks may consent yon sa mga taong may alam. Kickback na may under pressure.

  26. This why Binay can win the Presidency in 2016 and why Roxas lost the Vice Presidency in 2010. Binay does not need a political party because he already has a nationwide network of supporters in place. However,resistance will not be futile because someone from left field can still capture the imagination of the electorate, especially the youth. Grace Poe for President!

  27. Batang-Genyo, Alah Eh says:

    Hi, Joe, I still believe that VP Binay will not be sure of capturing the presidency at this stage when
    the Senate has started investigating the plunder charges made by Binay’s former vice mayor at the Ombudsman. He will be like Sen. Manny Villar who lost his presidential bid despite being popular and even topped he survey but the Senate”inquest made a very damaging effect on his bid. Besides, I also think like his mother,Pres. Cory, whoever Pinoy endorses (which I believe Mar Roxas) will be the frontliner as long as he (Mar) plays correctly the end game.

    • Joe America says:

      That may be true. But if there are several candidates running for the “straight path” vote, it will be split, and Mr. Binay, with his strong local endorsements, will win.

  28. rollyvelarde says:

    Atty. Harry Roque is an activist lawyer with no political ambitions and has been giving his pro-bono service to some of the victims of the Ampatuan Massacre, staking his life for justice. Now he stakes his reputation for something he believes in because of his personal knowledge and acquaintance with VP Binay.

    http://harryroque.com/2014/09/18/binay-and-the-senate-inquisition/

    • Joe America says:

      That does not encourage me to believe in VP Binay. It encourages me to question the reliability and motives of Harry Roque, who is not “Mr. Objective”, for attorneys are seldom that. They are advocates. Until legitimate questions are answered, like where Mr. Binay got his wealth and EXACTLY where over two billion pesos was spent on the parking/office garage, all words from Mr. Binay or Mr. Roque are meaningless political diatribe. Advocacy. Self interest. These are not hard questions. We know the building is NOT world class, as we were told. And it is NOT a green building, as we were told. All they have to do is answer the questions to get a direct run to the Palace, but they instead throw smoke bombs. Deceits and disinformation. Why? If Binay were clean he could get into office easier than any recent candidate. But it appears that he cannot do that. I can only think of one reason why.

      • rollyvelarde says:

        There is an extensive COA report that could be examined yet this too is questioned or ridiculed. I do not know how one can conclude something as overpriced without technical bases and expertise. This is why the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee is not the proper forum to effectively evaluate a malfeasance. Which brings me to the objectivity of Atty. Roque in citing a preceding similar case tackled by the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee. There are proper channels or forums that should be used to answer these mere accusations that have not yet been proven conclusively. I would demand punishment and accountability if these were true. Who has the authority to decide? Can the senate convict VP Binay? No, they can only destroy him. If you see a strong case, let the wheels of justice roll. The Senate Blue Ribbon Committee is obviously abusing its power. There are other compelling issues that the senate can tackle like the DAP where many of the disbursements and usage did nothing to pump prime the economy and were just used for partisan politics. Lastly, I hope you can first research on Atty. Roque before making any conclusions on his objectives.

        • Joe America says:

          Can you provide me with the link to the CAO report? I’d love to see it. That’s what transparency means, right? That we laypeople can get the information easily. Right now I’m in the dark, and I’ve seen no journalistic write-ups about the report. In fact, the COA has not issued a final ruling on the Parking Garage, another deceit put up by the Binay camp. The original report had been set aside until the Senate subcommittee demanded seeing it. Otherwise, COA was going to bury it.

          Reads like some inside shenanigans going on within Audit, to me.

          Please show me the information if it is so readily available. I’m easily swayed by facts.

          • rollyvelarde says:

            The six-page COA report issued by resident auditor Cecilia Caga-anan said the construction of the Makati City parking building along F. Zobel Street in Barangay Poblacion was reasonably priced.

            She submitted the investigation results through a memorandum to National Capital Region (NCR) local government sector head Carmelita Antasuda in response to a letter by Bondal himself dated Jan. 10, 2014 asking for a probe, specifically on the alleged discrepancy between the actual project cost and data from the National Statistics Office (NSO).

            Copies of the letter were sent to Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales and COA Chairman Ma. Gracia Pulido-Tan, who referred the same for action to the audit agency’s Metro Manila office.

            In particular, the COA report said there was no basis for the claim of discrepancy between the project cost and statistics from the NSO cited by Bondal.

            • rollyvelarde says:

              Resolution 826, the actual payments for the said building as of December 31, 2013, per the COA Report of February 17, 2014, already amounts to a total of P2,367,679,633.95, with the building contract split into five phases ..

              This resolution should be the one being scrutinized since this is a report done by the government agency in charge of evaluating these matters. This resolution should be the pick-up point of all allegations that was in response to the principal accussers request to COA. However, the two senatore found it better to cast doubt on this report and water it down than to highlight it.

            • edgar lores says:

              *******
              rollyvelarde,

              The COA report of Cecilia Caga-anan was repudiated by no less than the COA Chairperson Grace Pulido-Tan.

              Source: http://www.rappler.com/nation/66756-coa-makati-building

              On this basis alone, your deluge of Binay propaganda must be rejected.

              Clearly, you are a Binay troll although JoeAm has extended you the courtesy not to label you as such.
              *****

        • josephivo says:

          Mr. Binay himself explained how the overpricing is done. Price setting as he explain has nothing to do with costs but only with how the new price compares with other overpriced buildings. Who selected the named buildings? It is also the method used by COA in assessing, comparing with similar buildings. Did the in-house auditor get the list of comparable buildings from the contractor?

      • edgar lores says:

        *******
        It’s not worth considering Harry Roque’s opinion on Binay. It is hardly objective. In another piece on his blog, “Binay is it!”, Harry reveals he looks up to the VP in admiration as a sort of big brother. Apparently, Binay was a student – and a pet – of Harry’s mother.

        In Philippine culture, personal ties are paramount… until they break. And in the breaking – as with the whistle-blowers in the PDAF scam and the ongoing Binay hearing – the secrets unfold, the masks lifted, the illusion of normality shattered to reveal the sordidness that lies underneath.

        Yes, Binay is it! He’s the veritable devil. 🙂
        *****

  29. rollyvelarde says:

    I guess you are holier than thou Edgar. And all those who voted for and trusted VP Binay are the legions of the devil.

  30. edgar lores says:

    *******
    Speaking of biased bloggers, has anyone notice that Ellen (Tordesillas) has not uttered a peep about the veep. If one looks at her “Tags” and “Categories”, there are no references to the dreaded name. On “Tags”, the names that loom large are “Gloria Arroyo”, “Noynoy Aquino”, “Antonio Trillanes IV” and “Benigno Aquino III” in that order. (She seems to be as complimentary to the Senator as she is critical of the President.) How to interpret her silence about the veep though? Pro? Anti? Don’t care?
    *****

  31. joji says:

    I am sure Mar Roxas and his Liberal Party will not commit the same mistake of allowing coalition forces to accommodate riders who has split endorsements like Chiz Esudero did to Pinoy which divided the votes favoring the an opponent. This time a solid endorsement by Pinoy will carry the weight. I still have my intuition that Mar can still beat VP Binay on the same turf. Invincibility in Phil. politics is a myth if they are careful on how to play the end game

    • Joe America says:

      It depends on how much damage has been done to VP Binay from the charges of corruption, and who else is in the running. If we had, say, Binay, Roxas, Cayetano, and Poe, then Binay would likely win unless two of the three opponents folded and threw their endorsement behind the lead opponent to Binay. Egos often get in the way of that. Roxas was extraordinarily gracious to bow out as a presidential candidate to concede to Aquino.

  32. giancarloangulo says:

    Reblogged this on On the 8 Spot and commented:
    I’ve been thinking about this since Binay won the Vice Presidency. My view is that since Makati nay the whole of CBD Metro Manila meaning Eastwood, Alabang,TechnoHub,Ortigas etc are really benefiting from policies that concentrate a lot of infrastructure and support services in the Philippines a more equitable sharing of the positive outcomes of this must be accounted for. I work in Makati but fancy myself as from Balanga, Bataan and Diliman QC. There must be a mechnism that allows my work in Makati to have a trickle down effect in the places that I consider home, outside of the effects of my spending in my hometowns. I am still thinking of a way to actually implement this.

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks for the honor of the reblog. Very sharp observation about the overlapping interests and benefits that occur in metro-manila. I suppose we could consider the concept of “federalization” or, more accurately, the distribution of power. The various cities in the metro area have very strong powers. The only way to integrate is to give the overall coordination agency more powers and the cities less. Manila should not be able to define a trucking policy that penalizes other cities.

  33. R.Hiro says:

    ”KUNG WALANG CORRUPT, WALANG MAHIRAP” was the battle cry….The proof of this assertion by repetition was pushed to establish truth by PNoy himself…Repeating this line became the premier economic policy of the government.

    That way government got away from having to deal with the growth without equity story in the Philippines. The “Big Lie” gets repeated consistently. Stagnant and desperate standards of living are the foundation of our electoral autocracy. Over 80% of families are victimized by this ultimate corrupt economic system.

    50% of the input/output of the economy emanates from the NCR, CENTRAL LUZON, CALABARZON. These areas contain about 20% of the population.

    So we have a working template of a very successful local autocrat who has transcended local politics and has entered the electoral battle choosing the “Capo de Tutti Capo.” Chief among the lesser chiefs.

    It is interesting to note Harry Roque’s take on the Senate hearing on Binay..

    Purely from the standpoint of the rule of law and the powers and responsibilities of the Senate…

    Way above the intellectual capacities of the crowds.

    Economic/political structures in place are simply continuation of the same colonial polices during the Spanish/American periods. Strong central government with the executive having the power of the purse and the gun.

    The two countries that moved from autocratic rule to the rule of law, the U.S.A. and the U.K. stand above all other States that are trying the same.

    It will be interesting to see in the coming months whether the PR campaign to damage the VP to bring his poll numbers down to more manageable levels will work..

    PNoy is a weak incompetent benevolent autocrat. The Cojuangco economic/political dynasty has long been a power player in the scheme of things in this country. The Binay’s are relative newcomers.

    The challenges facing the resource and power starved State that is the Philippines requires an extreme makeover. Not simply sloganeering.

    Biany if elected and his health holds up will be a tougher autocrat that would support the elite…If he survives the onslaught of charges with good poll numbers the elite would support him.

    He would be more supportive of policies to favor big business both domestic and foreign…

    • Joe America says:

      “PNoy is a weak incompetent benevolent autocrat.” That’s an interesting perspective. I guess I can see the shading of autocrat in that he is loyal to his staff, and defends their decisions (Abad; PNP Purisima; Del Rosario; Gazmin, et al) when we would expect him to be disloyal, in favor of some idea of competence that we see from the comforts of our home. He has better information, he has to worry about who would replace people he dismissed – and perhaps there aren’t many in this corrupt land that even he trusts, but we can say he is incompetent because we would have done it differently, we of no accountability or knowledge or briefings from staff or responsibility for staffing up. No, I don’t buy it. I think the demands of the job are absolutely tremendous. Such a wide range of responsibilities, and he has good people in place working on those responsibilities to the best of his or their ability. It is too easy to pick apart and label, and too hard to do that.

      The results are found in stable finances, improved ratings in about every global index around, steady growth, Bangsamoro agreement, law-based (not knee jerk) China policy, building good infrastructure based on need, not favoritism, stepwise building of alliances, better storm preparation. No, I don’t buy weak and incompetent at all.

      He is a politician, yes, it is a political job. That is the democratic way. That’s how he got rid of the corrupt Corona, by being an effective politician.

      Binay misses one very important quality. Trust. He simply will not say how the money for the Garage was spent and he ignores the question about where his wealth came from. The only deduction I come up with is that it was acquired illegally, and that to me is a masterful incompetence. He has to prove his trust to me, frankly. But he refuses to do that.

      • Joe America says:

        ps. a reader informed us that the Roque family has a friendship with the Binay family. His support is not based on Binay character or job skills, but lawyerly advocacy.

        • R.Hiro says:

          That precisely is how a lawyer will speak…His anti-GMA STANCE WAS PURELY BASED ON VIOLATIONS OF LAW. A complaint has been filed with the Ombudsman who is touted to be the Eliot Ness of our day. She stuck the knife to Corona with her recitation of unverified bank accounts. Binay is exempted from answering anything in the Senate simply because a complaint has already been filed….

          Look it took the U.S. Supreme court when they struck down Nixon’s assertion of executive privilege when they declared that he did not have absolute powers like Louis XIV of France
          while in office.

      • R.Hiro says:

        One of the major incompetency’s is believing the governments own spin….

        Financial standing ( budget deficits, credit rating) started ten years ago with the passage of the E-Vat and the emergence of the current account surplus (OFW). Whoever replaced GMA would have benefited from this fact. The fact that very little mention was made of the QE program of BERNANKE and of our own BSP QE that created so many pesos that produced benign interest rates and high liquidity conditions in the banking system…

        The Bangsamoro Agreement is still to be approved constitutionally firm. The last one failed muster. Alliance building through the power of the purse is pragmatism gone amuck…Better storm preparation let us give credit where credit is due.. Gov. Joey Salceda…Name a brand new infra project based on need originally proposed not in the backlog….

        The most stupid thing he has ever said was the fact that the SC was overreaching. All has to do is read the Constitution most especially the economic provisions in the preamble and elsewhere.

        No implementing laws were legislated by Congress on the economic provisions. So the SC is forced to interpret the articles on its own….Definitions of patrimony and the powers of State intervention have not been defined by Congress…

        The balance of powers clause is another… Congress failed to appreciate the executive orders of autocratic Marcos that were incorporated with the laws enacted by the executive and Congress…

        The entire civil code and criminal code is being revisited ……Liberal democracies are under strain most especially in the U.S. and Europe…Economic stagnation has set in.

        Hungary recently declared a change from liberal democracy to an autocratic regime.

        Objective conditions will determine politics….

        The trust embedded in autocrats arise from survival needs….They have no room for principles…

        SC’s job in the scheme of things is to interpret laws and not make new ones……Congress is supposed to be the receptacle of constituent power and not be the spittoon of the executive. The system is obviously not working…So far the electoral autocrats are holding at bay the left. They are the social welfare apparatus of a weak and ineffective State…..

        From A. Lincolns first inaugural speech on institutions and law………

        This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the existing Government, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it or their revolutionary right to dismember or overthrow it. I can not be ignorant of the fact that many worthy and patriotic citizens are desirous of having the National Constitution amended. While I make no recommendation of amendments, I fully recognize the rightful authority of the people over the whole subject, to be exercised in either of the modes prescribed in the instrument itself; and I should, under existing circumstances, favor rather than oppose a fair opportunity being afforded the people to act upon it. I will venture to add that to me the convention mode seems preferable, in that it allows amendments to originate with the people themselves, instead of only permitting them to take or reject propositions originated by others, not especially chosen for the purpose, and which might not be precisely such as they would wish to either accept or refuse. I understand a proposed amendment to the Constitution—which amendment, however, I have not seen—has passed Congress, to the effect that the Federal Government shall never interfere with the domestic institutions of the States, including that of persons held to service. To avoid misconstruction of what I have said, I depart from my purpose not to speak of particular amendments so far as to say that, holding such a provision to now be implied constitutional law, I have no objection to its being made express and irrevocable.
        ……………..
        All profess to be content in the Union if all constitutional rights can be maintained. Is it true, then, that any right plainly written in the Constitution has been denied? I think not. Happily, the human mind is so constituted that no party can reach to the audacity of doing this. Think, if you can, of a single instance in which a plainly written provision of the Constitution has ever been denied. If by the mere force of numbers a majority should deprive a minority of any clearly written constitutional right, it might in a moral point of view justify revolution; certainly would if such right were a vital one. But such is not our case. All the vital rights of minorities and of individuals are so plainly assured to them by affirmations and negations, guaranties and prohibitions, in the Constitution that controversies never arise concerning them. But no organic law can ever be framed with a provision specifically applicable to every question which may occur in practical administration. No foresight can anticipate nor any document of reasonable length contain express provisions for all possible questions. Shall fugitives from labor be surrendered by national or by State authority? The Constitution does not expressly say. May Congress prohibit slavery in the Territories? The Constitution does not expressly say. Must Congress protect slavery in the Territories? The Constitution does not expressly say.
        In your hands, my dissatisfied fellow-countrymen, and not in mine, is the momentous issue of civil war. The Government will not assail you. You can have no conflict without being yourselves the aggressors. You have no oath registered in heaven to destroy the Government, while I shall have the most solemn one to “preserve, protect, and defend it.”

        ……..
        ” I am loath to close. We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature. ”

        • R.Hiro says:

          ”DISCRETIONARY POWER” FROM THE TRAFFIC AIDE TO THE PRESIDENT HIMSELF IS THE MOST POTENT CURRENCY APART FROM THE CURRENCY CREATING POWER OF THE BSP AND BANKERS…..

        • Joe America says:

          I’ll be addressing judicial overreach on Wednesday. You are right, the Constitution says what is says, and that is the problem. It’s why we come to a pressing point of something have to give, the Court or the Constitution, because Executive ought to have some leeway to move the country, and rulings like that on DAP constrain real deeds. I read today that residents are complaining that the National Government has not moved them off the riverbanks, one of the programs curtailed by the DAP ruling. Major flood control improvements in Manila (not yet completed) are funded by DAP. When Executive can’t execute good deeds because of legalistic interpretations, there is a problem. And the Aquino government has to address it or be declared incompetent by even more people.

          The Bangsamoro Agreement could indeed get shot down by a legalistically inclined Supreme Court, which is not responsible for the peace and prosperity of Mindanao. Another perfect example of a Court that does not have Executive accountability potentially limiting performance of an Executive branch that is earnest in its pursuit of peace and prosperity. And more ammunition for those who wish to prove the Aquino government incompetent.

          It is simply astounding to me that the Philippines is on the rise and there are so many people who do not find good cheer in that, or appreciate the difficulty of making that happen in a social setting that is burdened with game-playing and corruption in the interest of private gain.

  34. rollyvelarde says:

    I agree with the opinion of R. Hiro. Similar to what VP Binay did in Makati, he will favor big businesses (domestic and foreign ) for the benefit of the masses eg. employment, higher salary, cost of living allowance, micro enterprises, housing, infrastructure, healthcare, etal. Once these benefits truly trickle down to the masses, a new and bigger consumer base will be established to catapult the economy to greater heights.

    • R.Hiro says:

      Whoa, I never said that Binay will favor the masses…The same economic policies that binds the PNoy government and every government before it will prevail….

      • rollyvelarde says:

        Sorry for the boo-boo R.Hiro. I take it back as my opinion.

        • R.Hiro says:

          No harm no foul……. Please note the ffg…From JMKeynes on the end of ‘laissez faire’…

          ”It is not true that individuals possess a prescriptive ‘natural liberty’ in their economic activities. There is no ‘compact’ conferring perpetual rights on those who Have or on those who Acquire. The world is not so governed from above that private and social interest always coincide. It is not so managed here below that in practice they coincide. It is not a correct deduction from the principles of economics that enlightened self-interest always operates in the public interest. Nor is it true that self-interest generally is enlightened; more often individuals acting separately to promote their own ends are too ignorant or too weak to attain even these. Experience does not show that individuals, when they make up a social unit, are always less clear-sighted than when they act separately. We cannot therefore settle on abstract grounds, but must handle on its merits in detail… distinguish afresh the Agenda of government from the Non-Agenda; and… devise forms of government within a democracy which shall be capable of accomplishing the Agenda…”

  35. Allan says:

    I hope VP binay present himself to the senate and prove he is innocent of all accusations being thrown at him otherwise if he will just keep on saying “politika lang yan” then people would think he is guilty.

    • Joe America says:

      He can’t explain, otherwise he would have done so in specific terms, rather than general terms: green building, world class building, political attack, class attack against the poor . . . I doubt that he will attend the hearings and will justify it because it is a “political charade”. Never mind that there have been startling revelations testified to by witnesses under oath.

      • RHiro says:

        Scuttlebutt abounds that Binay gets condo units as kickbacks from all developers…Why not ask the Ayala, Lucio Tan, Sy, Ty, Villar, Lopez, Pangilinan, Gokongwei,Kwok groups if this is true? They all have had and have projects in Makati….

        Briber and bribee could be charged…Memo to the investigating duo at the Senate…

  36. Bong valencia says:

    The article reads,”Binay is obsessed to become the President…this is destiny”. The rest of this article outside of that thought becomes irrelevant. Country’s future is doomed,Mr. Writer.Do something positive, to avert your destiny.

  37. No Powers No Favors No Shit says:

    finally, acknowledgement of PH’s deeply-embedded culture of amoral interdependence. in PH culture trumps everything, no matter what.

  38. pedro says:

    I hope people particularly these makabinays and bobotantes will read and understand this article. It needs to be translated in Tagalog and share ruralwide as a wake up call.
    More power to you Sir Joe America.

  39. Some people are asking for the complete list of cities, municipalities and other LGUs allied to the sister city of mr. binay. Pls provide us that list. Thanks.

  40. amado pal m. benares says:

    I wish the request of Mr. Benjamin Lee be granted. . .and hope this writings shall be printed in common everyday newspaper. . .

  41. Macapili says:

    Scary, very scary indeed.

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