Where is the Senate probe into the destructive influence of tabloid media on the Philippines?

free pressWhy is freedom of the press so important? Why is it touted as being right next to freedom of speech and freedom of protest as essential protections that make for a better democracy?

Two reasons, mainly:

  1. It is important because it allows democracy to flourish as an intelligent, interactive form of government. The media are the caretakers of information that help the public understand events, advocate for or against different government policies and acts, protect against private misdeeds, and make informed judgments at the ballot box.
  2. It is important because it keeps government or private parties from controlling peoples’ minds, their understandings of what is happening, their vision of the real world. The media, under a principled democratic state, empower all citizens, not a few institutions or an autocratic government.

Let’s call the two reasons: (1) caretaking of democratic intelligence, and (2) protection against totalitarianism.

Media are commonly called “the fourth estate” because media bridge between the public and government, standing alongside the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches as important pillars of democracy.

With that as background, we have to ask, is the free press in the Philippines doing its job? The global ratings typically give the Philippines high marks for press freedom. There are a wide variety of media outlets here and no state censorship. The media are self-regulated, and what can be more free than that?

Well, I’m here to tell you that this notion that the Philippines has a free press is wrong. As wrong as wrong can be.

Philippine media fail on both standards for a valued free press:

Caretaking of democratic intelligence

First, media in the Philippines are horrible custodians of information leading to good democratic decisions. They are too busy ramping up circulation with sensationalist views to do that.

The “news” surrounding the Battle of Mamasapano stands as a glaring abuse of principled media ethics. News has been headlined with outright error, from “Aquino orders AFP not to join the attack” to “MILF and BIFF engage in fighting”, and numerous other untruths. Speculations and rumors. Reports from hidden, unverified sources. Accusations made before the accused were consulted, the famous one-side today and one-side tomorrow tabloid treatment, generating anger in between. Never has the picture drawn by popular media been so hyped with fiction, with rumor and speculation, and precious little calm, balanced, accurate, reliable information.

It was a horrible representation and it almost cost the Philippines its stability and continuing rise. This is a nation that does not have its unified, inclusive, patriotic, positive act together. The main reason is an unrestrained media of little journalistic integrity, of little ethical fiber. Journalism 101 students have a better grasp of ethics than a lot of Philippine media owners, publishers, editors and writers.

Philippine media insert opinions into news, shaping its content into one of emotion and confrontation. The President is described as “bone-headed” within the news report. A battle is described as “botched” when, through the eyes of the fighters, it succeeded in getting rid of a deadly mass-murderer. Costly, yes. Botched, no. One-source reports are common; the source is not identified, not cross-confirmed, not checked with authorities. These irresponsible stories are headlined as breaking news. News reports in the Philippines are seldom whole, balanced and informational. They are tabloid.

The caretaking of Philippine democracy is tabloid.

Information is shallow, values are poor, emotions run angry and critical, and the public operates in that same vein. Uninformed, angry, negative. Making poor decisions.

The Philippines is a tabloid democracy.

And the price is negativity and instability.

Protection against totalitarianism

The media also fail the second standard, the second reason why a free press is important.

Media represent a controlling force, not a broad set of interests.

Media favor the favored who rule the nation for self advantage as surely as did the Spanish, Americans and Japanese. The media are owned by the oligarchs and controlled, editorially, by the powerful. The Romualdez family has a direct role in articulating the Inquirer’s hostile view toward President Aquino. The Manila Standard and Times are megaphones for the Binays.

Popular ideas are formed through slanted news. An ABS-CBN newscaster runs an over-hyped, misleading flyover of the Purisima “estate” and seals Purisima’s fate in the minds of the public: “CORRUPT”. From that, the extension is made that President Aquino is corrupt.

Vice President Binay is given a loud forum to manipulate the facts, to deny the evidence, to accuse the innocent. Senator Nancy Binay, a green and unskilled legislator, is the media darling. She is often the first quote sought, right after the leftist radicals.

Big media speak for the powerful, for vested interests. The few rational, earnest voices found in the opinion pages are overwhelmed by the flood of editorialized news and editorial opinion. Relentless, outrageous emotional headlines focus almost exclusively on the negative, the conflicts, the blood and gore. The hope for an honest, progressive, uplifted Philippines gets hijacked to favor the favored.

But don’t take my word for it. Read the Freedom House report on freedom of the press in the Philippines. It is required reading for those who want a good summation of the nation’s “free press”.

The totalitarians in the Philippines are the media, business and political barons who build walls of impunity and shape the public message in such a way that honorable democracy, for the people, gains little traction. The powerful control this vital fourth pillar of democracy.

The Philippines is a “captured” democracy.

 “Yeah,  yeah, Joe. We’ve heard it before. So what do you want?”

What to do about it

Well, self-regulation of media has failed. It has failed miserably. Start with that and recognize that nothing will change unless you change the fundamentals.

I’d like a law or a regulatory agency that imposes a public service mandate on ever broadcast or print outlet, and within that public service mandate imposes a subordinate mandate that says news is to be informational and not editorialized or political, with reasonable steps taken to promote accuracy and the well-being of the Philippines. For example:

  • The publication of state secrets should be a crime.
  • Publishing unconfirmed reports or anonymous, single-source reports ought to be prohibited.
  • Publishing one side of a controversy without seeking input from the other side ought to be prohibited.
  • Speculation and rumor ought to have no place in news unless clearly labeled as “commentary”.
  • There should be punishments up to and including loss of broadcast or publishing license for repeated or egregious offenses.

These can be ethical guidelines if there is a regulatory body in place to monitor and discipline wayward outlets. They should be laws if there is no regulatory body.

If the Philippines is a failed state, it is largely because news media fail to fulfill their vital role of informing the public honestly, honorably and competently. And because news media do not operate with the well-being of the general public in mind, but cater to the powerful.

This problem is much more important than some of the matters now being investigated by the Senate. It is the infrastructure of democracy, as important to national well-being as the legislature, or courts, or executive. The ways of media, their values and policies, can define the Philippines as an honorable, capable, vibrant democracy or a captured tabloid democracy.

Today the Philippines is a captured tabloid democracy.

 

Comments
40 Responses to “Where is the Senate probe into the destructive influence of tabloid media on the Philippines?”
  1. Of this I can’t but agree. The problem in a failed but slowly forming state such as the Philippines is that the commissions are too easily compromised. Take the case of the NTC, it has failed in it’s mission to bring about a high quality telecommunications infrastructure because of it’s cozy standing with the telecom companies. I’m looking at how other countries handle this but it seems where the money is the regulators become rubber stamp people.

  2. manuel buencamino says:

    Joe,

    “Publishing one side of a controversy without seeking input from the other side ought to be prohibited.”

    Hey podner, seems like you’re a step away from going over to my side of
    the right of reply debate. Except, you are a little more aggressive – favoring prohibition over right of reply. 🙂

    • Joe America says:

      Haha, I asked someone the other day who had an observation about my shifting (shifty?) ways, and I inquired as to whether he saw me as flexible, inconsistent or a hypocrite. He said “smooth tongued”.

      The problem is how to get to an ethical press. Legislators recognize there is a problem. Your man Angara talked to it specifically a while back. So they hatch Right of Reply, which takes an editor’s control over his page content away. I want them to keep control, but to be responsible. If we agree that the primary purpose of content that is called “news” is factual, unbiased information, then that is what ought to be provided.

      So defining news is step one.

      If we agree on that, then the providers of news ought to have standards that ensure it is what it is supposed to be. One-sided presentations are not news because they are only half the story. The other half needs to be obtained to qualify as news. This should be no problem for journalists. Publishers keep control over their content.

      Indeed, agreeing to these ethical standards would likely kill the demand for Right of Reply.

  3. josephivo says:

    Fully agree, but what a leftist stand, is this Joeam talking? And what about the free market?

    In a free market the chicken and egg problem is relevant too. What about the consumers? The “emotional” readers, the little assertive ones, the authority accepting, the celebrity prone, they are the vast majority and they are served well. Education?

    Missing are two other pillars: the economy with its many players and the “middle field” of organized citizens in churches, unions, sports clubs, homeowner associations… (personally I would like to add “artists” as a separate pillar too) The independence of the press from economic actors is missing. The influence of the “middle field” is missing, partly due to the weakness of the “middle field”, people belonging exclusively to their family and to no other organizations. The press has an important role in exposing these pillars too.

    • Joe America says:

      Interesting questions. I think the press have a role and responsibilities other than being a part of the free market and unrestrained or unregulated activities. Every freedom has a responsibility attached. We don’t yell bomb threats at the airport. All I’m suggesting is that the responsibilities of a free press be defined and operators be held accountable for living up to those standards.

      We can deal with the total “civil structure” adding in the pillars of economy and the middle field, but that would be a different discussion, a worthwhile one. This one just deals with the “fourth estate”, a commonly recognized pillar of democracy, standing alongside 1, 2 and 3.

  4. yvonne says:

    JoeAm, please check your email from me. It might go to your spam folder.

  5. Richard JP Cavosora says:

    Wikipedia describes mass hysteria as “collective delusions of threats to society that spread rapidly through rumors and fear”

    The tabloid media plays a central role in circulating the madness.

    • Joe America says:

      Very apt description. If we withdraw, say to the clouds, and squint properly, and look at the Philippine condition, we can see that it is indeed, if not mad, at least highly surreal and detached from any rational grounding of facts, information and truth. Thanks for conjuring up that image in my mind.

  6. pinoyputi says:

    I support your thinking but i am having difficulty with the first two “to do’s”.
    What is the the definition of a state secret. Was “Watergate” a state secret? Is Snowden’s information a state secret, maybe it is but I for one found it important to know. And would it not be possibible to publish single source reports when additional evidence or information is available. By limiting the media that much, important information might be kept hidden for the public.

    • Joe America says:

      I think reasonable and smart people can discern when information might be illegitimately in the public arena, and make the conscious decision to at least consult with government as to the sensitivity of the information. The discernment came up time and time again in the Senate hearing on the Mamasapano incident. All senators concurred that some information ought not be in the Public sector. When the Inquirer publishes a report that identifies the location of a US/Filipino training compound, one needs to ask, okay, why do we need to know that? Is it in our best interest to be revealing where the location of those instrumental in the fight against terrorism reside?

      Snowden’s information is a state secret. He is a criminal. When he sets foot in the US, he will be arrested and he will be in jail a long, long time. He risked lives, he damaged relationships, he cost taxpayers a bundle of money, he did nothing constructive. It may be titillating, it may be interesting, it may seem to have no impact on you or me . . . but it is very very dangerous. He put his personal morality above the collective morality of the entire United States. If we all did that, the world would be hell.

      • pinoyputi says:

        Now Joe, there i have to disagree with you. I include two articles, one icludes a LA Times poll where 66% thinks he is a hero. But my point is not so much to be right or wrong, you might even come up with a couter poll, but more that it isn’t so easy to decide which State secrets should be kept secret. What if you lived in Nazi Germany and had the knowledge of the plans for jews holocaust, or you had knowledge of the Russian plans in the Ukraine. Where would you want to draw the line. The state isn’t of such high morale standards that it should be exempted. Non of the involved in the Abu Ghraib wanted the story in the open, but i think it is good the story has been told. There are thousands of state abusing stories to be told. That is important for a healthy and mature democracy here, Europe and everywhere.

        http://www.newyorker.com/news/john-cassidy/why-edward-snowden-is-a-hero

        http://articles.latimes.com/2013/jun/10/news/la-ol-edward-snowden-poll-hero-or-criminal-20130610

        • Joe America says:

          Oh, I know my view is out of step with the majority. That doesn’t make the majority right, necessarily. For sure the government believes Snowden is a criminal, and they have accountability for public safety. The people of Peoria or Los Angeles do not.

          There is a difference between knowing of abuse (spying on Merkel) and making that known, and stealing data bases and releasing them to an organization such as Wikileaks. The revealed NSA scanning of phone data bases is continuing because it is the best way of tracking terrorist networks. But now terrorists take precautions because Snowden revealed the most powerful tool in the anti-terrorism war. I’m sorry. That guy screwed up big time and lives will likely be lost because of it. When the next terrorist incident occurs in the US, think of Snowden. It was likely not caught because of his arrogant morality.

          Hahahaha . . . I feel strongly about this, in case you noticed. But I for sure recognize that most other Americans disagree with me.

  7. Noel Parin says:

    “Philippine media insert opinions into news, shaping its content into one of emotion and confrontation.” Very well said. Best way to describe TV Patrol’s way of reporting.

  8. karl garcia says:

    If we think we have a problem with tabloid headlines, remember the rappler blog about identical oped articles? Before we laugh at similar bills filed in congress until it became a trend, we no longer care. that similar article was in four different newspapers if am not mistaken.

  9. karl garcia says:

    Foi ,the right to know. I hope the security secret portion wont be watered down when the smoske clears.

  10. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    TAKE THAT YOU TABLOID MEDIA !!! You hear us now? You hear Joe? Do you understand? Why can’t you tabloid media take a step up to professionalism and report news like ivy-school graduates should. If you cannot hack it, give it up and allow foreigners to invest in news media.

  11. BFD says:

    I think over time it will mature. Please remember that our media has been to so much restriction during MARCOS YEARS, the Dark Years of our nation. After EDSA 1, our press has gone from one extreme to the next extreme.

    I think it will balance out and even out and become more mature as the Media old guards become extinct, and progressive and mature newscasters and reporters bump them off.

    But for now, we have ride the wave and enjoy the ride….

    • Joe America says:

      I tend to disagree. I think some force from government has to be applied. Right now, “Right of Reply” has been the force of choice, but I don’t like that because editors lose control of their content. Left to their own, the drive for profits drive editors to sensationalism, and it is really not healthy. I think proper caretaking of the nation demands a change. ahahahah, but considering that we are both stubborn, we can agree to disagree on this one, too. 🙂

      Thanks for the point of view, which is, after all, quite positive.

  12. Christine says:

    It seems mainstream media is not covering the rallies that happened yesterday in Gen Santos, Davao, Marawi City in support of the BBL and the administration. Only citizens are posting photos on their Facebook accounts.

    Check this out:

    • Joe America says:

      That is astounding, Christine. I didn’t even know about those rallies!!! Yet, if you get a couple hundred leftists in front of the American Embassy, you get a front page photo cut really tight to make it look important.

      Thank you for the exclamation point to the article. How infuriating that the media skip these rallies. What, they can’t get to Davao city? Only “Catholic” news counts?

      Amazing.

  13. Killer says:

    A main point in Plato’s Politics is his suggestion of the Philosopher-King. The logic of which primarily is that this type of leader would place a high premium on ideas and informed judgment. In The Republic, he says, “(a) true pilot must of necessity pay attention to the seasons, the heavens, the stars, the winds, and everything proper to the craft if he is really to rule a ship.” For a contemporary and more inclusive setting, I boldly would like to add that an eloquence to aptly share not only the destination but also the purpose of the voyage as a non-negotiable quality. From this should stem an honest desire to educate and inform, as from which the citizenry ought to gain the inspiration to continually seek knowledge.

    Put in chronological-political context, The Republic, to my mind, understandably places the king as supreme. Without that context, I disagree and stress shared responsibility. In an ideal marked for the present, education is the obligation of the State, the citizenry, and those who hold the power to obtain and appropriate knowledge, that is, media.

    It saddens me to no end that we are, as of yet, painfully wanting in quality as regards these entities.

    Far greater minds than this feeble one have hitherto identified the social, cultural, political, and global events and circumstances that led to our current state. With half the problem solved, as it has been found a name, I believe it is incumbent on us to find 1) the solutions we need to prosper and fulfill our potential and 2) the discipline and willpower to make change happen.

    That the problems pervasive in these entities are interlinked can very well be the key to their resolution. A positive change in one directly affects the others. A dynamic, credible leadership can inspire the citizenry to action. Responsible, objective media keeps government in check and the citizenry aware. A disciplined and patriotic citizenry realized that national gain ultimately depends on individual action and that the greater good demands that they hold the government accountable, and the media, truthful.

    But while problem resolution can be the result of reactions from within and amongst the people, their government, and the distributors of information; the allocation of the power to effect positive change is not equal.

    For a democracy to work, the people in it must bear the biggest responsibility.

    It is up to us to discover, demand, and defend that which benefits us all. We are accountable to ourselves for being educated and aware. We must continually sharpen our minds and be constantly discerning. We must understand that can only truly appreciate something when we also consider everything. The energy we put into trying to be the first ones heard can be better used for asking questions and suspending judgment until our queries are satisfied. Let us add legitimacy to the loudness of our cries by ensuring we cry for what is true and good, and that we cry with clarity and a conviction that comes from a belief honed by reflection.

    The government we so despise is ours. We put it in place. Paradoxically, we often do so by refusing to fulfill our duty to choose our leaders. Do not give up your right to vote because you perceive it to be insignificant or ineffectual. Several million of us thinking like this renders this concept of democracy we say we hold dear useless against the very thing it is supposed to prevent—tyranny. We have to unquestionably take this responsibility seriously and the first step is educating ourselves. Take the time to sit down and find out what it is you want for your family and the country then learn objectively about who can best help achieve your aspirations. Have discussions with people you trust, debate with those who hold opposing views with the understanding that the goal is not to win the argument, but to gain information that will help you decide.

    We control the media. Considering we sign their checks, we will always have the upper hand. Yes, there is the problem of determining if we get fed what we want or if we are constantly conditioned to want something(s). But note how the constant in this equation is “we”. Media’s very existence is dependent upon us and, consequentially, so is the nature and quality of that existence. Therefore, we can very easily bring forth the media entity and ensure it fulfills its obligation to us by demanding only content that challenges our minds and enriches our lives. There is an aspect of dignity in all this. By surrendering reason and instead picking up the refuse spewed by a select, self-designated few, we successfully define ourselves as rubbish bins. When we give in to laziness of thought and decide that the gentleman on the TV is wearing a suit and is therefore qualified to do our thinking for us, we give up the intrinsic right of self-determination. There is no dignity to be found at the bottom of a rubbish bin or in a queue of cattle being led to slaughter. Make no mistake about it, these are conscious decisions. We ought to choose better.

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks for the elaborate comment, Killer. We are indeed responsible for “causing” what happens to happen. One of my biggest wake-up calls in this blog was that, if I write about books or intellectual concepts, readership drops way down. If I write about popular political topics or people, particularly those at the center of tabloid attention, readership rises. The audience here is typically well-read and intelligent. But they are really looking for fun and adventure and a little excitement.

      So one cannot blame the businessmen and businesswomen who own and publish and edit tabloids or tv shows for giving the audience what they want.

      For myself, ABS-CBN news is trash, and I don’t watch it. It’s a conscious decision, eh?

  14. Good article as always. Now for some feedback and critique.

    >Publishing unconfirmed reports or anonymous, single-source reports ought to be prohibited.

    This is something I have believed for a long time. Well, except for the part about total prohibition. I believe that anonymous sources are necessary in some cases, when there are no other alternatives. However, Philippine news media use them quite liberally, and not in a good way. Over here, pretty much no one complains about the use of anonymous sources (well, maybe except me), but if the various Philippine news media were based in the US instead, I’m sure their mail would be flooded with complaints (remember that once, the New York Times admitted that the most common complaint they received was the “excessive” use of anonymous sources). For a start, at least in American journalistic ethics, anonymous sources should normally be used only as a last resort, when no other source is willing to speak on the record. Perhaps, more importantly, American journalistic ethics dictate that the exact reason for anonymity must be disclosed somewhere in the article, and the reason must be a valid one. While it’s true that in practice, for various reasons, these rules are often ignored by American news media, at least they acknowledge it’s a big problem (the AnonyWatch series of NYT exists for a season). But here, no one seems to blink at all. The vast majority of news articles which cite (an) anonymous source(s) simply say “who spoke on condition of anonymity…” without disclosing why the person wishes to be anonymous. rather than saying “who spoke on condition of anonymity because…” If this were America, this could be considered a major breach of ethics. Plus, if someone claimed or at least thought that giving away the reason for anonymity may give people a clue as to the person’s identity, this doesn’t seem to be a valid “excuse” for American journalistic ethics; if anything, it actually recommends disclosing as much identifiable information about the source but not enough to actually point to the person’s identity (e.g. “A senator who attended the hearing said” rather than “a Senate source said”). Also, American journalistic ethics generally state that anonymous sources are not allowed to criticize anyone or give information that could be highly inaccurate. Many journalists’ careers have been ruined from the improper use of anonymous sources. But here, journalists don’t seem to care at all. They’re fine with using them for whatever reason.

    As for the Inquirer, I find it funny that you believe that it’s anti-Aquino. Of the big three newspapers, it’s generally the most supportive of the administration, and perhaps the most objective (it praises the government when needed, and criticizes it when needed, as what is happening now), which can be seen through their articles and their reader base. If anything, the pro-Binay newspapers are not Manila Standard or the Manila Times (both of which are actually pro-Arroyo), but The Philippine Star and perhaps the Manila Bulletin. Notice that right now, all the newspapers are reporting on the incident. Which is a good thing, as the people have the right to know about what really happened that day. However, notice that, at the height of the Binay probes, only the Inquirer and sometimes the Bulletin would have the latest Binay news as their headlines. As for the Star, Binay news would either be buried within the paper, or would be on the front page but not as the headline. Occasionally it would be the headline, but basically the Star never reported on Binay’s cases with the same fervor they are currently having with the SAF incident. Also, Inquirer’s columnists are mostly pro-Aquino with some exceptions (notably Doronilla), Bulletin is hard to see, while Star has mostly anti-Aquino/pro-Arroyo columnists (notably Avila, Pedrosa, and Pascual). Apparently, from what I’ve read, some Star and Bulletin columnists wrote articles that viewed Binay in a positive tone. Which is not wrong by itself (it’s their opinion, after all), but nevertheless, such acts seemed to have tarnished the papers’ reputations among some readers (there is even a Disqus user named BinayPhilstar who is both anti-Aquino and, more importantly, anti-Binay, and frequently comments that the Star is apparently pro-Binay).

    Finally, and perhaps the most disturbing, are the people who are most vocal at calling for President Aquino’s resignation: the Makabayan bloc in Congress and their various allies. They do have valid points, and I do agree with them that Aquino and Purisima messed up very badly, (saying that is an understatement), but I can’t help but feel worried about their lack of consistency. Notice that whenever an issue that the government is even slightly involved in, these people would take to the streets and rally, even more so when the United States is involved. Meanwhile, as I’ve commented before on one of your previous blogs, despite the various allegations against Binay, and the various issues the Philippines has with China, these leftists (except for the activist but Aquino-allied group Akbayan, which to my knowledge is not part of the Makabayan bloc and is even said to be their rival), these people were nowhere to be seen on the streets. I’ve heard various claims from them that they have released statements and/or made rallies regarding these issues, but after doing research, I’ve found that these statements feel rather half-hearted and do not have the same emotions that they release on the government. Also, for me, it’s very unlikely that such a rally would have gone unnoticed by the media (unless they were paid), as the media is always there whenever a rally takes place, no matter how small or by whom. I’m not saying that America is free from blame (honestly, I feel that incidents like the Balaginga Massacre should be more well-known among Filipinos, plus I feel that the negative sides of American occupation should be given equal weight to the positives during History lessons), I’m just saying that these people would apply the same standards to all regardless of who the are and who they are allied with.

    Just my 10 cents, I guess.

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks for the points of view, mk03. Let me label your paragraphs/points 1, 2 and 3. I agree with you on 1 and 3. You have drawn a superb characterization of problems with the way Philippine media deal with sources and leftists.

      I suppose for point 2, we’d have to do a detailed “content analysis”, a formal technique of study among journalism academics, to tell for sure. I’ve heard complaints that the Inquirer is “for Aquino”, and perhaps I am interpreting the enduring sensationalism of news as criticism, when it is just the way things are done. But take the recent case of the SC ruling on the Motion for Reconsideration on DAP. In the electronic version that comes out quickly after incidents, the Inquirer headlined that the SC had reversed itself on several points. When the print edition came out the next morning, the headline was “DAP ruling upheld by SC”. (I’m paraphrasing here; words may have been a little different)

      Why the change? Because the writer who filed may have done the headline for the electronic version, but editors got to it by morning and put in a view that did not reflect the substantial Aquino victory. And the Inquirer, in its editorials, have relentlessly criticized the National government’s handling of Yolanda. But never Tacloban’s poor work and intransigence. The President of the Inquirer is married to a Romualdez, so the paper CAN’T provide a balanced view on that incident.

  15. gary olivar says:

    Joe your biases are glaring. Media is practically blamed for the massacre. And it’s ok to report vs binay but not vs aquino. C’mon dude. You’re a better hack than that.

    • Have you read his previous articles? He’s criticized Aquino and his shooting buddies quite a few times. I do agree though that he needs to be more consistent, though.

      • Joe America says:

        Thanks for the defense mk03. On any give day, I can be “fluid” or “inconsistent” or “hypocritical” or “downright wrong”. The beauty of the blogs are the discussions which can respond to those conditions well.

    • Joe America says:

      As I recall, Aquino was blamed for killing the men by someone. If that is your belief, go with it. My bias is to be for the Philippines, and what I write fits into that bias. I happen to think President Aquino is good for the Philippines. I also try to depart from the thinking of most foreigners here who grouse and gripe about everything because it is not the way it was back home in the USA. So I try for positivism, which naturally runs against the grain of y’all who are in the gripe complain whine way of thinking. As for my skills at hackery, they are still being perfected. Give it 10 years and I might be of professional stature such as yourself. 🙂

    • Killer says:

      “Joe your biases are glaring.”

      Now THAT is funny.

    • john c. jacinto says:

      Better to be biased for the truth than for someone odiously corrupt like your glorious patron Pandak.

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  1. […] According to recent news report Brillante has asked the Office of the Ombudsman to revisit the criminal case filed against Binay that was dismissed without prejudice in 2006. But more importantly, I think, the Chief Justice should initiate an investigation into the conduct of the then Third Division pursuant to her vision of reforming the Judiciary. [GMA News: Ex-Makati vice mayor Bobby Brillante asks Ombudsman to re-open Binay graft case] […]



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