Bangsamoro Basic Law – Managing Risks


By Pinoy in Europe


The purpose of the BBL is to finally put an end to decades, even centuries of conflict in the Muslim-dominated southern regions of the Philippines. It was made in the hope of empowering the region and ending conflict by increasing affluence. This is a great hope and important for the future.

The 122 pages of the draft BBL may be downloaded here. It is important for every informed citizen to read it:

Due to Mamasapano, the BBL has become controversial, the public discussion very heated. Having witnessed the discussion from afar, I am both hopeful and worried and therefore have looked at things.

In a speech held on March 27, 2015, President Benigno Aquino III said the following:

For my part: If the proposed bill is lacking, it can be addressed by pushing through with the debates on it. With the continuation of hearings about the BBL in Congress, each one is given an opportunity to understand the proposed bill. We believe: An initiative that arose out of good intentions can be fixed by those who likewise have good intentions towards their fellowmen . . .

To address this, I am inviting citizen leaders known for their wisdom and integrity to stand as independent convenors. These include Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, former Chief Justice Hilario Davide, Jr., Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Howard Dee, and Bai Rohaniza Sumndad-Usman.

They will gather other responsible and respected leaders to spearhead a National Peace Summit to deliberate on and discuss the BBL. They will dissect the proposed law in a calm and reasonable manner that will not incite anger and hopelessness. This way, the BBL can be improved. They will write a report that will be made public, so that everyone may be informed, and so that more of our countrymen may understand the matter. In this manner, we will be able to advance a reasonable decision as regards the Bangsamoro Basic Law.

The purpose of this analysis is to help advance a reasonable decision regarding BBL, as President Aquino stated in his speech; and to further constructive discussion to push out destructive critics. The goal of this analysis is to identify major risks and define possible solutions to manage them. Examples of this:

  1. Instead of fearing flat tires, one puts one spare tire in a car; two flat tires is unlikely.
  2. Jet planes have two engines and can fly with one; thanks to engineering, two rarely fail.
  3. Having fire extinguishers in buildings manages the risk of fires.

As a concerned Pinoy with IT training, I have used the following informed layman’s approach:

  1. Identify the risks based on the knowledge available to me and the fears that many people have. Made a judgement call based on what I know and perceive to identify which risks may be real.
  2. For every risk, there is as short justification of why I consider the risk likely to occur and the consequences as major. This is my judgement call again based on what I know and perceive.
  3. Based on my complete reading of the 122-page BBL, I have identified sections and articles that in my point of view do not manage the risks as fully as they should.
  4. I have suggested measures to manage the risk in form of changes to the BBL. As an informed layman, it is not within my competence to give exact suggestions as to how to make changes.
  5. I have left the following aspects out of my analysis:
    1. Political desirability of the BBL; let us try this solution first before rejecting it.
    2. Legal, economic and political aspects that I cannot competently judge.
    3. Symbolic aspects are emotional and political – they are issues for politicians.
    4. The actual transition to BBL and the plebiscite that will be held to confirm it.
    5. Possible additional plans to supervise and help Bangsamoro in its starting years.

This analysis may serve as a basis for further discussion based on the premises stated above.


The five risks I have identified, and proposed countermeasures, are:

1. Oppression of Christians in Bangsamoro

Why: It is a distinct possibility that Christians may be oppressed in Bangsamoro, given historical resentments. In the BBL, there is much protection given to Lumad communities; they have been duly considered.

1.a. Article II of BBL defines the Bangsamoro people very restrictively as being mainly the descendants of those who lived in Mindanao, Sulu or Palawan at the time of conquest or colonization. This clause, even though it has no further consequences, is not a good sign.

1.b. Article VII Section 9 states that a Bangsamoro Electoral Code will be defined, but does not clarify who is allowed to vote in Bangsamoro, making it possible to exclude non-Muslims.

1.c. Article IX defines basic rights and explicitly mentions the rights of Lumads, but is not clear on the rights of Christian settler groups already living in the area. Same thing with Article X which defines the Bangsamoro justice system. It focuses on Sharia and on tribal laws but has only a short section on local courts.

Risk management measures: modify BBL to explicitly make clear that all Filipino residents of Bangsamoro are allowed to vote and all who were residents of Bangsamoro upon ratification of the BBL enjoy minority rights. What the Moros want for themselves they should give others.

2. Continued mass poverty and corruption

Why: The leading clans of the Moro region have usually been very rich while the people remained very poor. With a government under their full control, there is no guarantee that this will change. The BBL alone cannot fully manage this, only with respect to taking measures to avoid corruption and misuse of funds meant to develop the region.

Good: the BBL has provisions against conflict of interest and even a section that removes Members of Parliament that have been convicted of major crimes – something the Republic of the Philippines could put into its Constitution and throw out Senators that are in jail. It also has a strong development focus.

But: the Bangsamoro area may have natural resources such as oil and natural gas, and was already considered for palm oil plantations by Malaysia. It is therefore important to prevent rent-seekers from within the ranks of Bangsamoro itself from hogging the profits and hindering competitive growth.

2.a. Article XII Section 2 creates a Bangsamoro Commission on Audit, but does not make clear how COA will supervise it. Section 10 states that Bangsamoro will give 25% of all taxes collected to the Central Government, but shall retain that share for 10 years before giving it.

2.b. Article XII Section 22 states that the BMG may contract its own loans, credits and other forms of debts. Section 23 states that the BMG may avail of directly of Overseas Development Assistance. Section 25 states that the BMG may enter into economic agreements.

2.c. Article XII Section 32 states that revenues from non-metallic minerals belong fully to Bangsamoro, from metallic minerals 75% to Bangsamoro, from fossil fuels and uranium 50% to Bangsamoro. It does not define how these revenues are to be calculated.

2.d. Article XII Section 35-39 define an intergovernmental fiscal policy board (IGFPB) in detail – obviously the Philippine Government hardly has any true supervision and control over the finances of  Bangsamoro. This makes the risk of funds being channeled elsewhere very real.

2.e. Article XII Section 40 states that the IGFPB may recommend the exercise by the Bangsamoro of additional fiscal powers in order to reach full fiscal autonomy. See 2.d.

Risk management measures: modify BBL to give full supervision of finances to the Republic of the Philippines while the Bangsamoro Government does the actual management. Give the Republic of the Philippines the right to redistribute Bangsamoro funds by itself if not used for regional development.

3. Continued security problems and rearmament

Why: Given the history of the region, the risk of continued security problems and even covert rearmament of individual groups – possibly with money from corruption – is very real and with very adverse consequences. The Philippine Government must have this under control.

3.a. Article XI Section 2 defines that the Bangsamoro Police is part of the PNP, but the Chief Minister of Bangsamoro de facto decides over it. Not enough Central Government control.

3.b. Article XI Section 16 says that the Chief Minister may request the President to call upon the Armed Forces if needed. No direct right of the Armed Forces to intervene or monitor matters.

3.c. Article XI Section 17 specifies that the Central Government and the Bangsamoro Government shall establish coordination protocols to govern AFP movements in Bangsamoro.

Risk management measures: modify the BBL to put the Bangsamoro police fully under PNP supervision, or have only the PNP. No need for the AFP to coordinate with the Bangsamoro government. Set up a joint Bangsamoro/Philippines body to deal with abuse claims by Bangsamoro residents.

4. Uncontrolled expansion within Mindanao

Why: Given the fact that some Moro rebels believe that the whole of Mindanao justly belongs to them and some with this ideology may come into power. This is dangerous, especially in conjunction with possible rearmament. But let us focus on the relevant BBL articles:

4.a. Article III Section 2d stipulates that contiguous areas to the Core Territory defined in Section 2a-c where there is a resolution of the LGU or a petition of at least 10% of the registered voters in the area asking for inclusion at least two months prior to ratification can become part of Bangsamoro. This is obviously a dangerous paragraph because it can cause contiguous areas to become part of Bangsamoro via fraud or intimidation.

4.b. Article XII Section 5 allows the Bangsamoro Government to provide assistance to development efforts of other regions. This in connection with 4.a. is very dangerous. Development assistance to neighboring regions can be used Binay-style to buy allies.

4.c. Article VI Section 10 stipulates that the Bangsamoro Government may provide assistance to communities of Bangsamoro people living outside the territory of the Bangsamoro. This gives the Bangsamoro government the chance to finance terrorism if the wrong people are in it.

Risk management measures: the territory of Bangsamoro should be fixed. In doubtful areas contiguous to the defined core territory, a plebiscite to decide whether they can join should be held with representatives from both the Republic and Bangsamoro supervising it. After this, the territory of Bangsamoro may no longer be changed. Those who want to live there can move. Those who do not want to live there anymore can leave. Any other solution invites chaos and discord.

5. Secession from the Republic of the Philippines

Why: Some Moro rebels do not see themselves as Filipinos and may want to secede from the Republic of the Philippines. This in conjunction with rearmament and expansion in Mindanao is a big risk.

5.a. Article VI stipulates that there shall be a Central Government – Bangsamoro Government Intergovernmental Relations Board to resolve disputes and issues through regular consultations and continuing negotiations. There is therefore no mechanism to enforce the rules of the Philippine republic if the Bangsamoro Government decides to violate them.

5.b. Article VI Section 9 stipulates Bangsamoro participation in Central Government, but there is no Central Government participation in the Bangsamoro Government except for Presidential supervision. This means no real control over what the Bangsamoro Government does.

5.c. Article V Section 2.9 says that the Central Government shall have primary responsibility over coastguard matters, but then again, Section 2.10 states that the Republic and Bangsamoro shall cooperate and coordinate through the intergovernmental relations mechanism with regard to the enforcement of customs and tariff laws and regulations. Effectively this means that the Republic has little control over what possible assistance may come from overseas.

Risk management measures: direct supervision of the Bangsamoro Government by the Republic, not coordination. Define when autonomy may be suspended, or a transitional plan to autonomy with a five-year transition period. The coasts of the Philippines should be controlled ONLY by the Republic to prevent arms and men from seeping in from elsewhere. A representative of the Republic should be part of the Bangsamoro government, possibly with veto rights on vital matters still to be defined.


With some changes, the risks inherent in giving autonomy to a region that has been a hotbed of rebellion for 40 years can be managed to create a balance between the aspirations of the Bangsamoro and the concerns of the Republic of the Philippines. And thus forge a lasting peace built upon a rock.

May the National Peace Summit convened by President Aquino see this analysis and the lively discussions that will follow it as a constructive contribution to making BBL stronger.

In fact many aspects of the Draft BBL are actually better than the present Philippine Constitution.

  • The parliamentary form of government for example is a better guarantor of continuity in a culture that is strongly clannish and individualistic, not like the Americans who have greater sense of common weal and more respect for the state than we have – their system fits them.
  • Its respect for tribal traditions and justice as well as local peacekeeping and mediation – which is already part of the Philippine barangay system – is more rooted in our Malay base culture.
  • It could be a helpful blueprint for states within a Federal Philippines, if that is desired.

But there is one final, interesting aspect that I think should be considered:

  • In Germany, richer federal states help poorer ones via the so-called Länderfinanzausgleich.
  • Bavaria was a recipient state until 1992 and now contributes most to this mechanism.
  • Bangsamoro gets a block grant now; maybe they will be the ones helping back in the future?

Hopefully, things will be managed in such a way that future perspectives remain open for us all.


269 Responses to “Bangsamoro Basic Law – Managing Risks”
  1. PinoyInEurope says:

    True to myself, I will be the first to comment on my own blog article. I would like to thank Dean Tony La Viña for his great articles about BBL that helped me deep dive into the topic:

  2. Joe America says:

    In this case, I like the approach of looking for the big flaws that would cause us to mistrust the product, and digging down to see what’s there. I don’t view it as a negative look at the document, but a way to test it, and I think you have identified some very big risks.

    I’m happy to see Number 4, Uncontrolled Expansion, because that one jumped out at me as soon as I read it. A sure path for conflict and aggravation, rather than solution. And to that point, I am inclined to ask, what exactly are the Bangsamoro looking for?

    One legitimate aim I would think is to re-balance and compensate for decades of disenfranchisement. In other words, a larger share of the nation’s investment than might otherwise be granted.

    Related to that is simply a future, jobs, and the financial wherewithal to stand whole.

    Third, preservation of cultural traditions, to include recognition of Muslim rules that do not conflict with National rules. Sharia courts are a part of this.

    Fourth, and one you have recognized, a form of government that recognizes the many subordinate tribes or clans or governments and gives them a voice in their future. Parliamentary government does that.

    Those are legitimate reasons. One and two do not require a BBL. Three and four does.

    The fifth is the one you focus on: ambitions for something more. That one is indeed dangerous, and you are correct to put in place the mechanisms to ensure ambition for anything other than economic and cultural well being are restricted. That ensures this is a PEACE agreement and not a step toward further conflict.

    Your recommended solutions do not bar objectives one through four, so ought not raise much objection. If objection is raised, I’d guess that Five is actually a motivation.

    So your test becomes a self-test for the Bangsamoro.

    Well done!

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      The finished the 30 years war and was very carefully crafted, in fact it became the base for a lot of international law today.

      A Catholic-Protestant conflict aided by France on one side and Sweden on the other side that destroyed the medieval German empire nearly completely.

      In Munich, there is a monument to Bavarian military heros, the Feldherrnhalle. Hitler attempted a coup in front of this monument in 1923. The man on the left is Count Tilly, mercenary leader of Catholic troops in the 30 years war. In the notorious sack of Magdeburg, Count Tilly’s troops killed 25.000 of the 30.000 inhabitants by sword. Ampatuan massacre was nothing compared to what this Catholic warlord “accomplished”.

      Hopefully, the 40 years war in Mindanao will end soon, and possibly in two to three generations, the things that happened will just be a faint memory. The land will take time to heal from its wounds, it is therefore important to keep the peace. This is why I wrote this.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Catholics had the power through the Middle Ages, then Luther came, numerous wars, several peace settlements and then one minor provocation that started 30 years of war:

        Hotheaded Bohemian Protestants threw the Catholic delegates of Emperor Rudolf II, nephew of Felipe II of Spain after whom the Philippines is named, out of the window of the Prague Castle which is now a beautiful tourist spot. It took centuries to heal the country.

        The man on the right of the Feldherrenhalle is Prince Wrede, who fought as a general when Bavaria sided with Napoleon against other German states. France wanted to keep Germany from being a power again and played the game of divide-and-conquer.

        Bavaria was integrated in the 2nd German Empire (the “3rd” one we all now about) in 1871, but was allowed to keep its own army and everything, but they became more like a Scottish highland regiment than potential separatists. History can provide many examples.

        It is important to sometimes imagine things that were before considered unimaginable. January 26, 2023: First and Second Bangsamoro regiments together with 2ID and 5ID, helped by destroyers Kudarat and Lapulapu, drive the Chinese off Panatag Shoal..

    • The demand of MILF representative Iqbal is that the BBL be passed as is while the President is Convening a Peace Summit with some would be statesmen to put forth suggestions to improve the BBL.

      This puts forth two scenarios.

      If the MILF does not accept the suggestions of the Peace Summit then it is they who are backing out of the Peace Process and the it’s not the President’s fault. And 20 years of negotiations must go back to the drawing board. This is not fully true because in a lot of ways the BBL is the child of the Domains MOA of GMA. But a delay in passing something like this means another lost generation of the mindanao poor. Delaying this must mean an equal amount of poverty targeting for Bangsamoro claimed places.

      If the MILF accepts the suggestions then we are a stronger nation with a much brighter future than originally suggested from a somewhat flawed BBL draft.

      Still forming an opinion on BBL. It’s too big to parse right now

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        see my answer downstairs, you are invited to read just one Article or part of it and then summarize it for the group.

      • Joe America says:

        If the BBL dies because controls are tightened as PiE suggests, I suspect it will be because there are motivations other than economic revival and preservation of cultural heritage. That is, political and self-interest reasons. And it will be good that it dies.

        • Ancient Mariner says:

          I think that your last sentence is a forecast of the future, if Congress and others do their job on the BBL. In addition to political and self interest reasons you should also include Islamisation of the region and what ever road that leads one down.

          Should the BBL, when modified, not be accepted by the MILF and violence erupts. Who do you think will fire the first shots? Does not the answer speak volumes?

          If the root cause of the conflicts in Mindanao is poverty, as most people claim, then a BBL, even a modified one, will be a much slower route to poverty eradication. Better direct, properly controlled and monitored input of huge sums of money into the Mindanao economy. Properly and transparently controlled by the government. I don’t believe that this has ever really be tried, or if attempted, not pursued with any great diligence or conviction.

          It amazes me how a handful of MILF leaders have managed to effectively hold the Philippines to ransom. Perhaps somebody out there can provide some insight as to how many of the 12,000 MILF are actually “Leaders” and involved in the decision making processes?

          Oh Yes, and my heart goes out to the true indigenous people of Mindanao who have been pushed to the side in order to pacify the MILF. Better the true indigenous peoples and the Muslims havw an equal share in the negotiations. A better BBL would be the outcome.

          • Joe America says:

            It is amazing how our sense of things tracks exactly in line. The steps to me are that the Philippines makes clear that it is a nation that welcomes diversity. Then individual indigenous peoples can decide for themselves, can I be Filipino and keep my heritage? Well, the Philippines is a land of 7,000 islands and 114 languages. All are free. They are Filipino. So if they can say “I am Filipino”, that is a community worth investing in. But if the answer is “I am Moro”, or other indigenous tribe, then it is unfair to ask Filipinos to invest in those communities.

            • Ancient Mariner says:

              100% spot on. Two questions I keep asking myself:-

              1. Why could the might of the Philippine Armed Forces not subdue the MILF?

              2. Why was such a cockeyed BBL approved for issue in the first place. How could a document which is unconstitutional get passed government scrutiny. Was is sneaked out through the back door?

              • Joe America says:

                It seems to me the answers are:

                1) Because the MILF cannot be distinguished from innocent civilians, and they know the lay of the land, which is troublesome for fighting.

                2) The document may or may not be constitutional, and it has not passed government scrutiny. It passed Executive scrutiny. It was definitely not sneaked through the back door. It has been front and center for three years. The difficulty in writing any contract is tying to consider what the words mean in some future context, when surprises arise. Also, one generally negotiates “in good faith” and assumes the other party is also doing the same. If that is not true, the fault rests with the party that has broken faith, not the party that trusts.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                The difficulty in writing any contract is tying to consider what the words mean in some future context, when surprises arise. when my lawyer (who is legal counsel and board member of a major IT firm) and I look at contracts, we try to do exactly that. Anticipate the major things that can happen based on experience, then safeguard.

                My lawyer once surprised me – I had the contract already signed just a few inches from where I am now typing and he wrote me: forget it, you are giving away your intellectual property, this way written by somebody even I would be careful if I met him in court. IP rights are the most dangerous aspect of the business, even more than liability clauses.

                Also, one generally negotiates “in good faith” and assumes the other party is also doing the same. You can only go by that premise if the other party is culturally more of less working with the same assumptions. One only has to look at the sales/lease treaty between the Sultan of Sulu and the British regarding North Borneo/Sabah as an example.

                And to refer to your discussion with jameboy – he is write in stating that we are deailng with somewhat different people here. My experience with Muslims, to put it in a neutral manner, is that many of them have aspects of the Oriental bazaar mentality. IMHO we should not have send two academics to deal with them, but at least one cunning palengkera type.

                If that is not true, the fault rests with the party that has broken faith, not the party that trusts. Shame on you if you fooled me once, shame on me if you fooled me twice is more like it. The history of the region is well known, things that happened before can happen again in somewhat different variations. They should have taken a devil’s advocate with them, like a vaccine that forces you to make antibodies, to double-check.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Have to write partly in Filipino now, because it can be expressed better that way:

                An old asongkalye piece of wisdom is huwag kang magpalamang

                Nagpalamang tayo sa BBL pero hindi pa pirmado, kaya tignan sana ng mabuti ng mga may tungkulin para hindi tayo dehado diyan. Erap tignan mo rin, ikaw may deskarte ka.

                My lawyer and me originally met in a gambling situation with Turks, Greeks and Bavarians.

                Regarding contracts he once told me if you notice the other side is cheating, in Bavarian village situations you don’t get mad, but you grin and show the other guy you noticed so that the other guy knows you are not a sucker. It is also a corrupt/clever Catholic culture..

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                My lawyer is a Bavarian Lutheran and therefore I joke and tell him you are more of a cultural minority here than I am, at least I am Catholic.

                His answer was, people often think I am naive because of my forthright Protestant ways and because I look like a geek and not like the typical Bavarian wheeler-dealer/rascal.

                Hehe but they underestimate me he says and THAT is also an advantage.

              • karl garcia says:

                Huwag magpalamang is the number one cause of traffic jams Otherwise known as Gridlocks. Streetsmarts can get you stuck.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                If there are rules you should not work that way. But in dealing with rebels or foreign states, you are on the street and there are no enforceable rules so you have to be a bit aso.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                But do not be too DOGmatic that is not good. From time to time, be FROGmatic (pragmatic) and amphibious, meaning flexible. Know what to use when.

  3. karl garcia says:

    Uncontrolled expansion. No to that.
    Hope the summit can resolve the issues. I still hope there is enough time for congress to pass this, together with other priority bills.I hope the lower house does not prolong any further the Mamasapano hearings.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      After a probation period, they could be allowed to form their own Bangsamoro regiments, say after 6 years, but these regiments could be sent to help defend the Spratleys and not be allowed to stay inside Bangsamoro say until 2030, when they have proven their loyalty.

      The Scots fought English during Braveheart, but later the Scottish Highland regiment became a major asset to Britain. Use the warrior spirit to our advantage but be careful.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        If had anything to decide, I would theoretically even make a deal like that part of the price for Bangsamoro autonomy. OK you spilt the blood of the SAF 44, now prove your loyalty by spilling some blood for the Republic of the Philippines. Sandugo ng Moro at Kristiyano.

        The sandugo between Americans and Filipinos was when they fought the Japanese together during World War 2. After that, the Philippine-American War became history.

      • karl garcia says:

        last year or two the scots had a plebiscite for secession, yes?

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          But not war, and it did not succeed. In Bavaria they still have a few secessionists but nobody takes them too seriously. Some like to fly the Confederate Flag in their gardens.

          Which goes to prove, you never are fully sure if you can keep a territory. See Yugoslavia.

          • karl garcia says:

            before that USSR

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Right. Before Lenin it was all Russian Empire. The Soviet republics were well-meant.

              But then again, Lenin’s father was half-Asian so one might pout and have doubts. But only if one’s name is Vladimir Putin and not Nancy Binay.

  4. i7sharp says:


    Didn’t “lebensraum” come to mind?


  5. i7sharp says:
    In the image used for the article,
    is that “SHARIA” above “BANGSAMORO”?

  6. josephivo says:

    A question that comes before is: Fight or Negotiate? It is the eternal question with clear arguments pro and contra by the old Greeks.

    The idea of risk management is great the government should be open for all criticism and reply the public in this format. The risks are not limited to the ones listed but endless. The way the aviation and automotive sets priorities is on: 1) the seriousness of the effect when the risk event materializes; 2) the probability of the event; 3) the availability of early warnings that the event is imminent together with the possibility to adjust the course of events. As we can not make detailed mitigation plans for all we should concentrate on the high risks by looking at the product of seriousness x occurrence x detection.

    Some shots from the hip:
    1- Voting is one aspect, what about “racism”, ghetto formation, demographic pressures, conversions…
    2- The track record on corruption of the Philippine government is not flawless to say the least.
    Corruption is not so bad when corrupt money is reinvested in the country, so provide transparency and more power to AMLC.
    3- Address the root causes of violence, see previous my last blog
    4 and 5- Related to the unique “powers” of Bangsamoro. How to lift powers to the national or international level as international Sharia “legislation”, economic entities… ? How to make alliances for powers on lower levels as education, economic entities…. ?

    Tnx for helping to structure the discussions.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      “2- The track record on corruption of the Philippine government is not flawless to say the least.” I know, but two thieves will check one another closely. ang magnanakaw, galit sa kapwa magnanakaw

      “Corruption is not so bad when corrupt money is reinvested in the country, so provide transparency and more power to AMLC.”

      So why are we making all the fuss about Binay, by that logic shouldn’t he also be OK?

      • Joe America says:

        His Swiss bank accounts and American homes are troublesome. (Rumor) And the culture of corruption he fosters seems to trouble investors.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Of course it does. So the same standard should be applied to Bangsamoro leaders.
          Because shady deals that only benefit them will lead to new BIFFs cropping up.

          Terrorist groups recruit from the poor and desperate. Less from satisfied people.

          Same thing for leaders like Binay. Or Hitler. They use desperation for themselves.
          Poverty alleviation and opportunities are first priority. Everywhere in the Philippines.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Wrote a more comprehensive answer downstairs.

      Each area could be a blog article in its own right.

      Advanced metaplanning also uses topic grouping.

  7. PinoyInEurope says:

    @giancarloangulo: just to give an overview to you and all the readers here:

    Article I. Name and Purpose
    Defines Bangsamoro and what BBL is for – to establish a political entity.
    No mention that it is part of the Republic of the Philippines.

    Article II. Bangsamoro Identity
    Defines the Bangsamoro people. Does not say they are Filipinos.
    Defines that there shall be a flag, emblem and anthem of Bangsamoro.

    Article III. Territory
    Defines the territory of Bangsamoro and the collective rights of the people,

    Article IV. General Principles and Policies
    the usual general stuff, nothing special.

    Article V. Powers of Government
    Defines which powers the Central Government has, which powers both CG and BMG have, and which powers are only for the Bangsamoro Government.
    Does not say that the Central Government is the Republic of the Philippines. As an afterthought, this leaves some space open for Malaysia to become the new central government.

    Article VI. Intergovernmental Relations
    Defines the relationship between the CG and the BMG. Only the President of the CG has supervision over the BMG, the rest is via the Intergovernmental Relations mechanism.

    Article VII. The Bangsamoro Government
    Parliamentary government – could somebody, karl or giancarlo please look at this in more detail and write a short summary? I don’t want to do all the work here…

    Article VIII. Wali
    Titular head of Bangsamoro, something like a constitutional monarch.

    Article IX. Basic Rights
    Normal stuff, even women’s rights are defined here. Very good.

    Article X. Bangsamoro Justice System
    Much emphasis on Sharia, Bangsamoro may have a Sharia judge in the Supreme Court.
    Tribal laws are respected, Local Courts mentioned in only one section very vaguely.
    Again, whoever wishes to look at this and summarize this is welcome to do so.

    Article XI. Public Order and Safety
    Bangsamoro Police, AFP and coordination.
    Any volunteers to read and summarize this?

    Article XII. Fiscal Autonomy
    Fiscal autonomy, auditing and Intergovernment Fiscal Board.
    Any volunteers to read and summarize this?

    Article XIII. Economy and Patrimony
    Sustainable Development
    Natural Resources
    Trade and Industry
    Banking and Finance
    Transportation and Communications
    One volunteer please per topic, they are huge, to read and summarize

    Article XIV. Rehabilitation and Development
    Special Development Fund coming from the Central Government

    Article XV. Plebiscite
    Constitutory Plebiscite for BBL ratification

    Article XVI. Bangsamoro Transition Authority
    Transition plan which is IMHO too short – just six months and not detailled enough

    As I already mentioned, I only stated the major risks above. Political, economic and legal questions were out of scope. Transitional planning as well, and symbolic issues like flag etc.

    Volunteers please to read and summarize the parts in italics. I read them too, but summarizing them is too much work for me now. Thanks.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      If somebody could please make a Table of Contents at least for the Articles and major parts, it would be very helpful. Again I do not want to do all the work here, thank you! 🙂

      Please post all volunteer summaries and Tables of Contents as answers to my big summary post just here so that things do not get lost.

      Karl, you did a great job in the last article looking for links, may I request your assistance?

  8. PinoyInEurope says:

    @josephivo: welcome, thanks for the input as well. I looked only at the BBL to focus on the purely risk issues, the other issues are complex so I structured it. Other areas of discussion are:

    Political aspects
    How much autonomy do we really want to give for example…
    What kind of relationship balance do we want with Bangsamoro?

    Economic aspects
    How much economic autonomy, especially trade within ASEAN – it is given by BBL…

    Legal aspects
    That is something for lawyers and constitutional experts

    Transitional aspects
    Very important to ensure that the first six years do not go wrong
    Just six months transition period is IMHO not enough

    Symbolic aspects
    Flag, anthem, emblem, titular head, calling themselves Bangsamoro people
    No mention of the Republic of the Philippines or Filipino citizenship
    This is something people may see differently so I left it outside…

    @josephivo, care to volunteer and look at one of the Articles, then summarize it? See above.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Religious/cultural aspects are also important, josephivo I remember your mosque article now, and my mention of the rights of indigenous people…

  9. karl garcia says:

    I tried but to be continued. it is hard

    Article VII
    Section 1. Powers of Government
    Section 2. Legislative Authority
    Section 3. Executive Authority
    Bangsamoro Parliament
    Section 4. Composition. – .
    Section 5. Classification and Allocation of Seats.
    (1) District Seats.
    (2) Party Representatives. .
    (3) Reserved Seats; Sectoral Representatives.

    Section 6. Election for Reserved Seats for Non-Moro Indigenous Peoples. –

    7 a. Primacy of customary laws and practices;

    b. Primacy of consensus building;
    c. Acceptability ofthe community;

    d. Inciusivity and full participation;

    e. Representation of the collective interests and aspirations of non-Moro
    indigenous peoples;

    f. Sustainability and strengthening of Indigenous Political Structures;

    g. Track record and capability; and

    h. Gender equity.

    Section 7. Regional Parties.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      It is hard. Try to read a whole chapter, make index cards of the main points you see.

      Then cluster the points that are similar and try to find a one-sentence summary for them.

      In the end per Article you have 2-3 main points. Except Article XIII which is like 5 articles.

      Try Article XI, I think it is much closer to what you know, the one about Police and AFP.

      How do you eat an elephant? You cut off one piece at a time and enjoy steak every day.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      The summary of Article XI is actually already in the blog article, in few sentences.

  10. PinoyInEurope says:

    I call upon the historians in this blog to provide a summary in bullet points of the history of the entire Muslim conflict from Spanish times until now. Especially the American time with the special role John Pershing played as Moro Governor in disarming Moro clans. It gives much more context.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Manong Sonny, Sumalakankayo!

      • sonny says:

        Just thinking out loud and subject to revisit:

        some variation on Ataturk’s secular configuration of Islam must first be defined and fashioned and put in place. Related to this is to include Indonesian and Malaysian societies in our Filipino radar screens.

        PiE’s enumerated risks are NOT promising as to workability of BBL. Back to square one scenario is very likely

        Filipinos and Moros should pay close attention, together, to the nature of their adversarial histories and sociologies. Cardinal Quevedo must be included in this type of dialogue. He has been in the thick of literacy for both Christians and Moros.

        I shall try to sort/collate Spanish & American timelines on their Moro experience.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Thanks sonny. Atatürk is one possibility.

          Another thing to look at is Indonesian Pancasila.

          Workability is doubtful. If risks are ignored it is knowingly.

          • sonny says:

            I know the feeling from your old man, PiE. I am listening to the CD, CHANT, by the Benedictine monks of Silos, Spain. The Lord of whom they sing is so needed to calm the savage spirit in this conflict. And the CHANT is so apropo to this holy week, the week of the Prince of peace.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Just a few weeks after Mamasapano, I did not notice it I admit. I was too caught up in emotions for that and many others too. The historical aspects deserve tabulation though, and the articles of the BBL also deserve a short summary here.

      If there is already an article, then it can be mined to make the summary. Not everybody has the time to read all of that so it might help to have a starting point here.

      Anyway I already read the entire BBL and know the history of the conflict…

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          OK, two months ago so it was no longer in my focus. But good, my comment about the Moro Wars during the US period gives even more context to the whole matter. Thanks.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        If I were asked to make an analysis, I would go by it like I make a consulting report – first outline then gather facts and outline again, if I were to make a Powerpoint presentation to brief someone who knows nothing 3-5 bullets points max per slide with max 2-4 subpoints.

        Chapter 1 – Intro

        Chapter 2 – History of the Muslim Conflict

        Section 2.1. Early Spanish period
        Section 2.2. Late Spanish period (Sulu, Sabah)
        Section 2.3. American period
        Section 2.4. Early Philippine Republic
        Section 2.5. Marcos times and afterwards

        Chapter 3 – Muslim rebel groups and attempted peace

        Section 3.1. MNLF and Misuari
        Section 3.2. ARMM and MILF
        Section 3.3. All-out war and Abu Sayyaf
        Section 3.4. MOA-AD
        Section 3.5. BBL and BIFF

        Chapter 4 – Bangsamoro Basic Law

        Section 4.1. Political aspects
        Section 4.2. Economic aspects
        Section 4.3. Legal aspects
        Section 4.4. Transitional aspects
        Section 4.5. Symbolic aspects

        Chapter 5 – Find the Way to Peace

        Section 5.1. Risk management (this blog article but more detailled)
        Section 5.2. Cultural aspects (josephivos blog article but more detailled)
        Section 5.3. Policy aspects

        Around 50-60 Powerpoints, the report would probably be 150 pages long.

        – Then use metaplanning to identify main issues and find a solution.

        – For tough problems, define problem, then common goal to be constructive.

        – After defining goals, define KSOs with metrics and measures to support them.

        You have to break things down into parts, otherwise you go crazy with details.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Something similar to what I have outlined should be made for the Congressmen and Senators as well as the National Peace Summit. That is so much information that I doubt everyone knows every relevant major aspect of it. But you need context to decide well.

  11. PinoyInEurope says:

    I wrote this article because the next time I visit the Philippines, I would be very happy to see a prosperous and peaceful country. Don’t want to feel sad for the home that I left.

    However, those back home are the ones who decide. I have just given an opinion and a structure to look at the issue better. In the end it is those back home who bear the most consequences.

    Enough times, I have turned my back on things that happened at home, with great sadness.

    It would be sad if the people of the Philippines do not use their coconut, as our teachers told us, in order to help shape the future. I do not have to come back, I will not if things go wrong again.

    Economic growth and peace at hand. Every opportunity to shape things. I hope it is used well.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      So, y’all have democracy and all the possibilities.

      It’s up to you to use them folks back home.

      I have shown you some examples…

  12. karl garcia says:

    For rebel returnees allow them one year debriefing (Not removing of under pants).retraining and compulsary enrolment to PNPA or PMA. Surrender all arms leaving only the lower extremities so they could still run for public office.

    • karl garcia says:

      Don’t train them to go after China,but ok at least they won’t have a problem with having to fight Muslims like in Jabidah massacre.Seriously Thai experience Buddhists vs Muslims not a good picture it would be like a Shaolin temple Jet Li movie or David Carradine in Kung Fu.Learn from the African experience where the Chinese are making it big time.

  13. edgar lores says:

    1. I miss the Big Picture.

    2. Granted, the Big Picture has been declared out of scope, but people need convincing that the setting up of an autonomous region for Filipino Muslims — in whatever form it may take, BBL or otherwise — is imperative.

    2.1. If this is done, half the battle is won.

    3. The Big Picture consists of several aspects, but to me the following are the most crucial:

    3.1. Legal framework. Is the Bangsamoro autonomous region legal?

    3.2. Ideological framework. Can a secular state contain a sectarian autonomous region? Is Islam compatible with liberal democracy?

    3.3. Economic self-sufficiency. Can the autonomous region achieve economic self-sufficiency and, beyond that, contribute to the national economy?

    3.4. Degree of autonomy. To what degree will the autonomous region be self-governing within the three branches of government (executive, legislative, judicial) and the independent commissions?

    3.5. Treatment of minorities. Can a sectarian autonomous region govern in such a way as to be fair to minorities?

    4. Without going into the reasons, my answer to item 3.1 is yes. But this is the sticking point for most people, and they cannot go beyond this question.

    4.1. Item 3.3 cannot be truly answered at this point, but the expected answer should be yes.

    4.2. Item 3.4 is a matter of negotiation but the defining principle should be that the autonomous region must be bound to the state — irrevocably.

    4.3. Item 3.5 should be guaranteed both in the basic law and in daily governance.

    4.4. It is on item 3.2 where I stumble because it appears to me that democracy is anathema to Islam. Islam is not only possessive of truth, of land and of righteousness, but it is unbending and encroaches… and encroaches eternally.

    5. Two more things.

    5.1. Disarmament should be a prerequisite as the first thing in the transition period.

    5.2. The basic law should not be rejected on the basis of unconstitutionality. If need be, the Constitution should be amended.

    • karl garcia says:

      Agree on all with 5.2 highlighted.if need be Charter change.Everytime something is unconstitunional, if it is for the greater good then charter change is the only aswer.

      • karl garcia says:

        To avoid conundrums or chicken and egg.Remove the June deadline and appeal to the MI that the summit is the best way to get the nation involved. Both houses still continue but still have to monitor the summit and invite them for final amendments and no more bicam conference that is overkill have it signed asap. I guess no more unconstitutionality petitions since all the stakeholders have been consulted.

        • sonny says:

          Karl, is MI same as MILF?

          • karl garcia says:

            Yes got lazy…if I have not reached my quota in jocularism I would say actually I meant MI6.

            • edgar lores says:

              Karl, I must have some of whatever prescription you’re taking… or whatever you’re drinking.

            • sonny says:

              Myocardial Infarct just came to mind. 🙂 Seems like this whole topic is predispoaed to one.

              • sonny says:

                Come to think of it, these “clarifications/analyses” can easily devolve to just another example of the worldwide conflicts going on. Lives are being lost.

              • karl garcia says:

                To avoid that MI, I reiterate the top selling oft promoted drink it piggy backs with every alcoholic beverage ad..the strongest lobby there is the drink called Moderately.
                The best snake oil around.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Yes, then eat a frog in the morning – and you will be fine for the rest of the day.

              • karl garcia says:

                Yes, you don’t need apples and laughter, that’s a MYTH.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Still, I will eat my apples with yoghurt, oats and nuts shortly plus tea. Need some energy.

                The frog to eat will be given to me by my project manager in our telco – one hour to go.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      “1. I miss the Big Picture.”

      Thank you for bringing it in.

      “3.2. Ideological framework. Can a secular state contain a sectarian autonomous region? Is Islam compatible with liberal democracy?”

      My personal view is that Church and State should be separate. Sharia is NOT a native tradition of Moros any more than Christianity is a native tradition of the Filipinos that were subjected to Spanish rule.

      Both religions Islam and Christianity are foreign imports added to our Malay tribal base culture.

      “3.4. Degree of autonomy. To what degree will the autonomous region be self-governing within the three branches of government (executive, legislative, judicial) and the independent commissions?”

      I wrote a little bit about how much I see as risky or not. The rest is optional.

      “3.5. Treatment of minorities. Can a sectarian autonomous region govern in such a way as to be fair to minorities?””

      That is a very good and basic question. Probably not.

      “5.1. Disarmament should be a prerequisite as the first thing in the transition period.”

      Correct. Thanks for bringing that point into the discussion.

      • edgar lores says:


        3.2. I agree that neither Christianity nor Islam are native religions. But both are current practice, so the matter of origin is irrelevant.

        I further agree that State and Church should be separate. But, again, this is not the case in current practice. It is not true for the national government, and it will be farthest from the truth for Bangsamoro.

        Take Sharia, for example. Not only would Sharia be adopted, but BBL wants to reserve a seat in the Supreme Court for a Sharia justice. Why?

        o In cases involving Muslims outside Bangsamoro, national laws should apply.
        o In cases involving non-Muslims inside Bangsamoro, national laws should apply.

        Under which instances, I wonder, would a Sharia judge be required in the Supreme Court?

        o If it is to settle issues between the national government and the Bangsamoro entity, then the Constitution and the BBL would be the guiding laws, and a Sharia judge is not necessary to make a valid interpretation in these cases… only perhaps a Sharia lawyer to represent the Bangsamoro side.

        This is partly what I mean by Islamic encroachment (which is akin to Catholic encroachment and INC encroachment but on a vastly more pernicious scale).

        Again, I think there is a provision for a Muslim representative to be appointed/hired in all major government departments, commissions, agencies and bureaus. I can understand the need for this provision at the Cabinet-level departments (such as, or especially in (!), the Department of Budget and Management). But is a Muslim necessary in the Bureau of Meteorology or the Statistics Authority as a representative of Bangsamoro and not on his own qualifications as a weatherman or a statistician?

        To me, this smacks of favoritism, of religious nepotism (as already practiced by the INC or so I am told).

        And so the inroads to the separation doctrine will be so broad and so deep as to accommodate a Bagger 293.

    • josephivo says:

      On 1- Is the BBL sneaking in federalism through a backdoor?

      Related to 3.2-


      Can Sharia align with standards of Human Rights? There are many Sharia families in Islam, according the bases the apply. The BBL is open about it, it states “among others” the sources are: a. the Koran; b. Al Sunnah = Prophetic traditions; c. Al Qiyas = Analogy; and d. Al Ijima = Consensus. “Among others” opens it up completely. It such a case it is prudent to think of a worst case, the very strict interpretation of the Wahhabis. Even for a much softer interpretation by the Turkish Refah party, the European Court of Human Rights determined in appeal that “its sharia is incompatible with the fundamental principles of democracy”.

      And for each type of Sharia there are different interpretations influenced by local tradition and tribal customs. BBL’s guarantee that the Bangsamore Sharia will not shift into an ISIL type of Sharia is the oversight by the Bangsamore parliament.

      Some concerns pop up in my mind:
      – Apostasy, all Sharia interpretation see it as a criminal offence requiring the dead sentence for men.
      – Caliphate, full Sharia – covering all spheres of live – requires a caliphate.
      – Muslim, Sharia applies only to Muslims, but who defines who is a Muslim, isn’t it only Allah who knows?

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        I kept that out of my analysis because it is a topic in itself – and a risk not to the Republic but to Bangsamoro internally. You are very right of course, what does Sharia mean?

        Article 9 defines Basic Rights. Therefore nothing in Article 10 should contradict them.

        Possibly it might be a good thing to define BBL as explicitly being subordinate to the Philippine Constitution, and that any provisions in BBL that are not compatible with the Constiution are considered null and void. The question of who controls that comes next.

        Also, being Muslim may be part of the local culture of the Bangsamoro inhabitants, but I doubt that Sharia actually is. Don’t think they used Sharia before, it is only an import from global Islamistic movements and probably not part of the real culture of Bangsamoro.

        I could imagine that they used something like the Malay adat tribal justice system before, which was also the system used in most of pre-Hispanic Philippines. But not Sharia.

        • Joe America says:

          Good assessment. The Sharia courts are allowed within the AARM but were inactive during the early years of that form of government. They still may be inactive. There seems to be little passion for it amongst the Moros, other than as a badge along with the titular head and flag. I suppose at some time we ought to discuss esteem issues, where symbols stand in for a gap in self assurance, but that is not just for the Bangsamoro. How much simpler it would be if people just said what they wanted, and we could all work to provide it, rather than establish these elaborate structures which stand instead for our day to day inability to understand each other.

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            My old man once said: “I wish our countrymen could believe more in themselves, and thereby learn to believe and trust more in one another”. Distrust is the reason for the inability to communicate in both directions. I mean real communication, not blame-games.

            I am a bit disappointed at how few answers have come to this article, where it is about a real national issue, while when it is about people or groups everybody is there. BBL yes, no or modified and if not what other alternative shall determine the country’s future. Who will be President is important but as long as it is not a crook the difference will be minor, while what happens to the Bangsamoro question is a make-or-break thing for the nation.

            • Joe America says:

              I think the lack of answers is due to the complexity of the BBL itself, which is rather like trying to figure out an entire Constitution, looking into the future. For me, your assessment provided clarity in that I now think the BBL can only be viewed in the context of the motives of the Moro leadership. If they are transparent and welcome accountability, then the agreement will work, and a little fine tuning along the lines you have suggested will not be a problem. If there are hidden ulterior motives, the kind that no agreement can fix because what is wanted is total independence built on a grand economic boost from the Central Philippines, then that will become clear based on reactions to proposed changes.

              I have a different model in mind, called building islands of accountability, and growing out from there, all within the current government framework. Outside the islands, warring will likely continue because the security will not exist for economic revival. The first question asked of every community due consideration as an island warranting investment is, “do you accept that you are Filipino?”

              If Moro communities don’t see themselves as Filipino, I don’t see why loyal citizens of the land should support them because of threats of violence. Extortion ought not be allowed. It ought to be fought.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                In the best case, the money being given to Bangsamoro becomes just a Beef BarreL. Can’t give pork to Muslims after all.

                Another possible solution: make the transition period longer and more phased, giving responsibility step by step after review phases, start with supervised development, then let them develop under supervison, then fiscal autonomy under supervision etc.

            • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

              When I know so little about a topic, I usually step back, listen and learn. To offer an opinion on something I’m still trying to understand is not my style.

              When I was just a child, I normally hear the adults saying of people who are rude and obstinate as “napaka moros ninyo”…somehow it stuck to my innocent mind then and prejudice had set in. Then I went to school and got hooked on books even at an early age, and slowly understanding came.

              Just recently, comments from Steve and taga bundok opened my eyes that our muslim brothers are just reacting and fighting from years of neglect and unfair treatments from the various governments.

              How to bring back trust between the revolutionary muslim groups and the government has been an almost impossible undertaking, what with atrocities being committed by each side against the other.

              Joseph ivo has written that the mosque and imams will play an important role in this efforts, and I will venture to add that the church, the christian bible reading church, together with the mosques and koran reading muslim brothers could make this dream of peace possible. Afterall, the God of Isaac and Ysmael is but one, although the brothers have come apart due to the impatience of the former’s mother Sarah and the arrogance of the latter’s mother Hagar brought about this thousand years old gap between the christians and the non christians.

              A more thorough discussion of this draft law by congress, and now, to include the convenor group will hopefully result in a more deep understanding of this complex issue – to address the constitutionality, budget and fiscal autonomy, form of government, risks involved and the corresponding proposals to mange such risks, will it include the whole residents of Mindanao or just a small percentage?

              Is there a possiblity that these discussions be covered nationally, not only here in Luzon but also in Visayas and in Mindanao through the help of modern communication technology, a live interaction, exchange of ideas so all these gray areas can be clarified to the satisfaction of all the stakeholders (we, the whole Filipino citizens.

              These are the late night musings from an ordinary citizen still grappling to understand but hoping that a way to peace can be found.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Thanks. That is good to know. The more citizens are involved, the better the consensus and the support for whatever is decided because it is understood and accepted by most.

              • My idea for a televised discussion is for resource persons to convince not only those immediately in front of them, not just talk to and discuss, analyze things with each other but talk as if directing their points to their audience – the people (but not to grandstand) in simple languages , for them to avoid such highfalutin (“pompous, arrogant, haughty, pretentious” or “excessively ornate or bombastic- according to the word detective) words so the simple, common citizens will completely understand and won’t feel left out in decision making.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Very good idea. I also think BBL should have been made an assignment in schools. Every pupil in a 20-30 pupil class given a part of the Articles to study at home and summarize.

                Then maybe a 60-minute TV movie explaining BBL in simple but precise language.
                The intermediate step to that would be to break down the summary of contents into a Powerpoint presentation like I wrote about further below. Then simplify it even more.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                In the long run what josephivo said is right though: education is important.

                It was amazing how much I learned in Grade 11-13 in Germany. OK Pisay I learned much already, our curriculum was similar to most college curriculums in science but not that much in social studies really. Not the prepared discussions that we had in Germany.

                After the war they put much emphasis on educating people to be fit for democracy.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                I wrote more about that below. Also that education is like sports.

                If you don’t train you are simply not fit – mental stretching, and mental muscle condition.

                My capabilities are because I was quite lucky – advanced educational programs in UP Elementary which was part of UP College of Education plus Pisay which is DOST, both not controlled by DepEd, then the excellent German system – that Japan and Korea copied.

      • edgar lores says:

        Thanks, Joseph.

        1. On 1: I was not thinking of the legal form of government (federalism or other) that the Bangsamoro entity would take. To me that issue falls under my item 3.4. I was thinking more of whether the notion of an autonomous region is valid in a legal sense. The legal framework I had in mind was from the perspective of United Nations doctrine and our Constitution.

        1.1. If the legal framework is accepted then there should be NO opposition as such to the creation of an autonomous region for Filipino Muslims. Only the mechanics of the creation and the maintenance of the region would have to be addressed.

        2. On 3.2, I totally agree that this is a main concern, if not the main concern. Islam is at odds with liberal democracy. And for a democracy to consent to give birth and harbor an antithetical entity seems to be perverse. Human rights are guaranteed in one system and the subsystem would take away those rights. Freedom of religion in one… and death for apostasy in the other.

        2.1. I was not aware that there are different versions of Sharia. I had the impression that Sharia derives from the common sources of the Koran and the Sunnah. What you say makes sense though because the common law of different countries — in Islamic terms the Hadith — are not universally common.

        3. The trouble is that Islam, like certain segments of Christianity, has never heard of postmodernism. At least, Christianity is capable of reinterpretation and has been observed veering towards pluralism (?) It’s strange because Mohammed gave recognition to Christianity and protection to Christians (and Jews?) until the End of Days.

        4. I think the hauteur of Muslims lies in the glory they once achieved. The Islamic Golden Age lasted for five centuries (750 – 1258), and not only two centturies (750 – 950). That would make the age one year longer than the Roman Empire (31 BCE – 476 CE). In the last century, Islamic influence resurged due to black gold. In this century it has resurged with the replacement of the democracy-communism ideological battle with the current Christianity-Islam conflict… and the mass migration of Muslims seeking better lives — but not freedom — to western countries. Whether indigenous or migrant, Muslims do not assimilate. The past glory beckons, and the Islamic phoenix will rise again.

        4.1. Without the desire to assimilate, there can be no unity of purpose.

        5. But do we know for a certainty that religion — and not inequality — is the driver of radical Islam?

        6. The solution for me is… individual and social transformation outside of organized religion. Yes, create an autonomous region but as a secular ethnic-based and not religious-based entity. Enforce the national law and restrict a modified Sharia to marriage and inheritance. Allow religious freedom. Allow Muslim females to marry non-Muslim males. Remove all unnecessary encroachments into the national government. All autonomous region symbols must be subsidiary to national symbols. Enforce a pledge of allegiance to the Philippines in all regional schools.

        7. The roots of war arise from the divisive ideologies that we believe in (whether we practice them or not), that control our daily lives, and that blinds us to the suffering of the Other. The roots of peace is to see our suffering and recognize it… in the suffering of the Other.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          The solution for me is…

          individual and social transformation outside of organized religion.

          a. Yes, create an autonomous region but as a secular ethnic-based and not religious-based entity.

          b. Enforce the national law and restrict a modified Sharia to marriage and inheritance. Allow religious freedom.

          c. Allow Muslim females to marry non-Muslim males.

          d. Remove all unnecessary encroachments into the national government.

          e. All autonomous region symbols must be subsidiary to national symbols.

          f. Enforce a pledge of allegiance to the Philippines in all regional schools.

          Thanks, excellent. A solution worthy of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

          Addresses the symbolic aspects which are very important politically.

  14. jtdelapaz says:

    Hi PiE. I chanced upon Noli De Castro’s radio program during my morning drive to work, and he was on his daily crusade of bashing the BBL, its unconstitutionality aided in part by an interview with Sen. Peter Cayetano, and questioning the credibility of the Peace Summit members. Sadly his radio program is the staple of the common people, and contributes a lot to the distorted view of the BBL. His arguments just fuel the anger and confusion about an important issue that he himself obviously has a very shallow understanding of.

    Thanks for presenting a structured and objective approach to understanding the BBL. Great article.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Welcome. In the end people have to think about the matter themselves and form their own opinion, otherwise it is all just uninformed prejudice. Hope that more do so, let’s see.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      I also wanted to leave my opinion of the Peace Summit members out of the objective analysis. My impression though is that they did not have enough own ideas and just let the MILF suggest what they wanted. And that the MILF got its ideas from the Malaysians.

      The whole idea of having a titular head is very typical for a Malaysian state, also the use of a very different kind of English than is usual for Filipino legal language.

  15. PinoyInEurope says:

    Risk Nr. 6. After secession, Bangsamoro becomes a Malaysian State. The BBL does NOT mention the Republic of the Philippines at any point, just the “Central Government”. It can easily be changed to become the Constitution of a Malaysian Federal State.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Also the constant use of the word “intergovernmental” is irritating, plus this strange phrase “asymmetric relationship” and the definition of Bangsamoro as a “territory” in Article I.

      But these are matters that people conversant in international law should look at.

  16. RHiro says:

    PIE, is there anything in the BBL that allows the new BM region to have control of its economic destiny? Who owns the land and other resources within this region….Do they have the right to issue their own currency? Do they have the right to control and manage trade with the rest of the country?

    You mentioned risk analysis… If their revenues simply come from the central government as their share of IRA is that the only source of their revenues. Local government code gives them the right to tax their people….

    Will they have a right to fashion their own economic policies separate from the national governments MTDP?

    The so called convenors for the BBL are nothing more than a shot across the bow of the military adventurers and the right wing nut crackers like Gonzales and Pedrosa.

    Big business, (including foreign groups), Catholic Church are the power behind the throne in this country…

    The right wing nutcrackers in this country have been handed a yellow brick road by the failed raid and subsequent fallout. All of a sudden former military men like Lacson are being suggested as president by retired military men…

    The ineptness of this government which some quarters have called the “Ineptocracy” have naturally forced the real Bosses to come out and draw the line…

    The Congress (both houses) are now trying to leverage the BBL with sources of support for the upcoming elections since the pork barrel requires full cooperation between executive and legislative branches…

    Pinoy will be giving his swan song in July… It is going to be all about finding funding for the next elections…

    This government in spite of all its slogans has had a hard time doing its normal mandate of governance and its time is almost over….

    BM political power without some economic power on their own is an empty drum….

    For all the war freaks out there….

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      “PIE, is there anything in the BBL that allows the new BM region to have control of its economic destiny?” A lot. Article XIII is full of it. But my article was only about risks to the Republic of the Philippines. In fact they have too much freedom IMHO. See article.

      ” If their revenues simply come from the central government as their share of IRA is that the only source of their revenues.” No. I wrote on that above as well, tax share etc.

      • karl garcia says:

        When I googled “What’s Going On?” This is my initial findings:

        What’s Up

        Twenty-five years and my life is still
        Trying to get up that great big hill of hope
        For a destination
        And I realized quickly when I knew I should
        That the world was made up of this brotherhood of man
        For whatever that means
        And so I cry sometimes
        When I’m lying in bed
        Just to get it all out
        What’s in my head
        And I am feeling a little peculiar
        And so I wake in the morning
        And I step outside
        And I take a deep breath and I get real high
        And I scream at the top of my lungs
        What’s going on?
        And I say, hey hey hey hey
        I said hey, what’s going on?
        ooh, ooh ooh
        and I try, oh my god do I try
        I try all the time, in this institution
        And I pray, oh my god do I pray
        I pray every single day
        For a revolution
        And so I cry sometimes
        When I’m lying in bed
        Just to get it all out
        What’s in my head
        And I am feeling a little peculiar
        And so I wake in the morning
        And I step outside
        And I take a deep breath and I get real high
        And I scream at the top of my lungs
        What’s going on?
        And I say, hey hey hey hey
        I said hey, what’s going on?
        Twenty-five years and my life is still
        Trying to get up that great big hill of hope
        For a destination

    • karl garcia says:

      This song lyrics is dedicated to the pundit formerly known as HVRDS

      “What’s Going On”
      “What’s Going On”

      Mother, mother
      There’s too many of you crying
      Brother, brother, brother
      There’s far too many of you dying
      You know we’ve got to find a way
      To bring some lovin’ here today – Ya

      Father, father
      We don’t need to escalate
      You see, war is not the answer
      For only love can conquer hate
      You know we’ve got to find a way
      To bring some lovin’ here today

      Picket lines and picket signs
      Don’t punish me with brutality
      Talk to me, so you can see
      Oh, what’s going on
      What’s going on
      Ya, what’s going on
      Ah, what’s going on

      In the mean time
      Right on, baby
      Right on
      Right on

      Mother, mother, everybody thinks we’re wrong
      Oh, but who are they to judge us
      Simply because our hair is long
      Oh, you know we’ve got to find a way
      To bring some understanding here today

      Picket lines and picket signs
      Don’t punish me with brutality
      Talk to me
      So you can see
      What’s going on
      Ya, what’s going on
      Tell me what’s going on
      I’ll tell you what’s going on – Uh
      Right on baby
      Right on baby

      • bauwow says:

        @KG, I did not know you can sing!

        I don’t know if Iqbal and the rest of the MILF will accept the recommendations of the independent convenors. At least, the President has accepted the fact that the BBL needs to be reviewed by assembling an esteemed group of individuals.

  17. jameboy says:

    The Bangsamoro Basic Law, just like any law or organic act, spells out the details of what is to come once the agreement to create a new Bangsamoro comes to life. Everyone wishes, even those who opposes it actively, that the Muslims in the South would finally find the answer to their problems. The day they solve their problem is the day we’ll get rid of that sore thumb that has been nagging us for decades.

    But try as hard as I do I can’t ignore the feeling of skepticism on the whole exercise. We’ve been there and practically done all of that. And now here’s another document being bandied again meant to be the magic bullet that will bring peace on everyone.

    The main point of the article is more on the-devil-is-in-the-detail approach as pointed out in the paragraphs of five examples comprising the risks factor. Problem was, the devil was not in the details presented. All activities were geared towards governance, control, economics, and more control. That is how we see things in figuring out the problems of the Muslims in the South. They make trouble, we listen and we follow the reason of their tantrums and we make concession for both parties to agree on something, on anything actually, that will give hope that peace is possible. That’s the familiar cycle. We completely ignore the fact that what drives the other side is not really because they simply want peace and goodwill to all men. Nope. That is what the Philippine panel wish for and, so long as it remains a sucker for anything that spells peace, might continue to wish for in the future. What drives the other side is power and authority not really towards self-rule or self-determination through autonomy but self independence and rejection of Christian relics and influence over them and the preservation of Islamic way of life and the celebration of its supremacy.

    The so-called ‘struggle for self-rule and self-determination’ is satisfied by giving them space and breathing room and money to map their own destiny. That is how we crafted and tailored made the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) for the Bangsamoro people. What happened? Right or wrong, it didn’t really capture the idea and objective of the desired autonomy that is why here we are again negotiating with another Moro group for another effort to pass an autonomous act which is again touted as THE solution to the problem.

    When is it going to stop? The cycle of we give they take has become a part and parcel of the on-going drama in the South. We call them our sisters and brothers but never heard them call us with that same terms of endearment. We think they’re no different but they see themselves as not like us. They’re never like us. Never Filipinos. They only avail it for convenience and camouflage.

    Do I hate Muslims? NO. I just hate people taking advantage of other people using themselves as reason. I grew up in Echague, San Miguel, Manila. Have lots of Muslims friends in a Muslim compound behind the former SM office which is almost facing the former Feati University back then, on the other side of the street. I played basketball with them, talk with them, etc. Most studies in the university belt principally MLQU. No problem.

    Although I’m wishful, that something positive will come out of this latest adventure of the government, I’m not hopeful. I see smokescreen billowing atop the BBL and nothing’s seems to be aware of it or they just refuse to see it. Everyone’s whistling in the dark.

    In this unrealistic and erratic times, it really make sense to stop and ponder the wisdom about being careful for what you wish for. 🙂

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      This is why I am putting some of the issues out in the open.

      So that people can see what this is about and think about it.

      Do you have any other ideas how the issue could be solved?

      • jameboy says:

        Do you have any other ideas how the issue could be solved?
        The idea is out there. We have a lot of intelligent and resourceful people on both sides. It is not rocket science so long as the party asking favor is honest and trustworthy. Before we think of peace solution, which seems to sweep aside other issues every time it is mentioned, we should first think of how to approach the whole package of the idea of starting a negotiation.

        Our over optimism to make peace often make us glance over simple matters that are very important in negotiating as equals. You want the negotiation to start on correct footing? Require the MILF to show proof of their authority by first ridding their area of influence of armed men and criminal elements.

        Had the GRP done that there wouldn’t have been a Mamasapano debacle.

        The MILF have to establish their reputation and credibility by proving they have the capability and capacity to sit on the negotiation table across us and honestly and truthfully claim that they are in-charge to represent all Muslims in the country.

        Acknowledging that there are armed men or groups they do not control within the area of their influence doesn’t speak well of a group trying to impress the government they represent their people. I will never negotiate with somebody or a group that I don’t believe have the capacity or power to control everything on their end. Never. Why? Because as the duly constituted authority I control everything from my end. Hence, it is just proper that the other party should also demonstrate the same command and authority.

        We have to have that kind of policy to avoid ending up negotiating with rascals and clowns masquerading as peace negotiators.

        • Joe America says:

          Yes, the MILF need to prove good faith, given that it was shattered by Mamasapano. I think that is difficult for the leadership because the MILF “community” is a bunch of headstrong warriors harboring years of animosity and imposed rules are too much like the oppression they recognize from the past. So I think it is hard for them to demonstrate good faith without feeling they are surrendering to oppression. It’s rather a “gotcha” or “Catch 22” circle.

          The only way they can prove good faith is to surrender.

          The leadership is stuck with trying to explain how that is not so.

          • jameboy says:

            I think the Mamasapano did not shatter good faith for it was not even present from the very start. That’s the reason why I opined there should be commitment to show or prove good faith. If they are still harboring ‘years of animosity and imposed rules’ then they don’t deserve to be on that table with us. They are not yet ready to make commitments. The rule applies on both sides and I think we have been very consistent in demonstrating good faith with them. It is also difficult on the part of the GRP going to the negotiation table with the citizenry and some lawmakers not fully convince that the other side is on the same page with them.

            If they have problems on their side, we too, have problems on our corner. And we are worse because we have to deal with the critics, the Legislature, and the process we have to go through. Those and the ever watchful eyes of experts and legal luminaries and various sectors that are undecided on the idea of conducting another negotiation. But still, as the legal entity representing the gov’t., the Aquino admin went on because it knows it has the responsibility to engage and address the problem.

            As an equal partner seeking lasting peace I don’t think it’s too much to ask of them to do the same.

            • Joe America says:

              I’d argue that good faith on the MILF side can be seen in three years of relative peace and economic progress, and earnest discussions under the guidance of an international panel of advisers. Also, recently, standing aside as AFP went after BIFF.

              But I agree more has to be done to heal Mamasapano. And GRP needs to demonstrate good faith, as well. Emotional outbursts that impugn the efforts made up to now tear down trust.

  18. mindanaoan says:

    “The purpose of the BBL is to finally put an end …” – this is really funny if you remember the agreement with the MNLF in 1996. It was also called the ‘Final Peace Agreement’. I suggest that when they sit down to talk peace with the Abu Sayyaf, they will sign a Really Final Peace Agreement; with the BIFF, the Really Really Final Peace Agreement; and with the JIM, the Really Really Really Final Peace Agreement. If something comes along after that, and if appeasement is still the name of the game, just call it R^n FPA, where n > 3.

    If you had followed the history of the moro insurgency, The MILF split from the MNLF because Misuari accepted autonomy, and the BIFF split with the MILF because the MILF was willing to accept autonomy. As long as the idea of an independent islamic state in mindanao is alive, the hydra of moro insurgency will just sprout a new head.

    Why do moro insurgents want to establish a islamic republic in mindanao (the whole of mindanao)? Because they want to impose shariah on any area they can control, and they have an excuse to claim mindanao, sulu and palawan as their homeland. They are brainwashed with the idea that they have a primordial right to it and others don’t.

    How does the BBL deal with this question? Art. II, Section 1 will give the natives of Mindanao before the ‘conquest’ (1521?) the name “bangsamoro”, a word coined by the MNLF in the 1960’s to refer to the collection of tribes of muslim filipinos. Lest you make a mistake of including the lumads as bangsamoro, Section 2 explicitly exludes them. How about the bisaya-speaking mindanaoans who were also here before the ‘conquest’? No mention.

    The BBL wants to enshrine the source of conflict into our laws. Perfect formula for more conflict.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Well, I am correct about the purpose of the BBL.

      If it will achieve it is another question.

      What is your proposal for a solution?

      • mindanaoan says:

        Can you restate the problem for me? Because I don’t know which is the problem here, the MILF going to war, or Noynoy not getting points for a peace agreement.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          How can the entire issue of civil war in Mindanao be solved? Is BBL the solution?

          Can it be fixed or not? If not what is the alternative? What steps would have to be taken?

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            There are two extremes between which many solutions are possible:

            Extreme 1: drive them off Mindanao and into the sea or Malaysia. Practically impossible.

            Extreme 2: give them the whole of Mindanao and let them do what they want. Also bad.

            Another possibility would be the Cyprus solution – put a heavily fortified wall around Bangsamoro, force all Moros to go there and all Christians move to our side of the wall.

            Actually all three possibilities are in my opinion nonsense and not really good solutions. So what can be done? Because if not, there will be more decades and centuries of war. Completely useless. So a balance must be found that is solid. BBL unmodified is fragile.

            • Joe America says:

              I suggest mass psychoanalysis on a scale not yet known to mankind, then therapy or shock treatments.

              • Joe America says:

                Start with the Senate.

                Correction, all judges . . . then the Senate . . .

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                My old man used to say that Philippine culture as a whole is confused. People IMHO have to ask themselves what they want and stop projecting things on perceived enemies. Other people are just that – other people with interests of their own, so find common ground.

              • sonny says:

                I’m just at the opening chapters of THE MORO WAR (American war with Moros 1902-1913) and the situation of peace (absence thereof) then and now has generally not changed (Americans then and Filipinos now). Speaking of DEJA VU … 😦

            • When I was a kid the NPA problem in our area was more pronounced, they were a menace to the people who just wanted to lift themselves up the economic ladder.

              But eventually our province was slowly transformed because of economic growth that was probably due to better highways and a high number of OFWs.

              The NPA problem receded. Probably a decade before I was looking at the Irish and Protestant conflict in Ireland as a model for how to resolve the conflicts in our country.

              As pointed out by you guys I fear that it’s the economy stupid case here. If we bombard the place with development or just force migrate the people caught between all the fighting we can minimize the human cost and also minimize the ground support.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Why are there so many Muslims in Taguig? Because it was implicitly part of the peace deal Marcos made with the MNLF. Similar to some rulers who forced nobility from restive parts of the country (Sultan of Sulu comes to mind) to move to the capital almost like hostages.

                If one is looking at it from a Macchiavellian point of view – many peace treaties in the past were sealed by trading hostages who were then punished if the treaty was broken. So let us force Iqbal to stay in Manila with his family just in case Bangsamoro makes trouble.

                And from our side, let us send Ferrer and Deles to Cotabato with their families, they will also be our guarantors in case the Republic breaks its promises. More skin in the game.

              • edgar lores says:

                Is the economic growth the cause or the effect?

                Perhaps it’s the change of attitude that comes first, that cultural assimilation is not only possible but desirable. This is the melting pot model.

            • mindanaoan says:

              “centuries of war”. The other side has it under its belt. Those who can’t live under conflict will die of frustration.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                But Duterte managed to knock heads in Davao. The Muslims there respect him.

                Would that be a model for the whole of Mindanao? Duterte had to become almost like a ruthless and strong Moro chieftain to survive and succeed. Mindanao is different…

          • mindanaoan says:

            If you look at it as a problem requiring a solution, you’re missing it. This is more like a never-ending, very complex, game. BBL in this context is a not a good move.

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              So what is your proposal to move forward in this game instead of BBL?

              What is first of all your ideal situation, your goal how Mindanao should be?

              • mindanaoan says:

                If you reduce it to a government vs. rebel game, (disregarding the discordant elements within both government and rebels) then it’s an insurgency, so deal with it using counter-insurgency. But that is not all, because there is an element of islamism in this insurgency, and nobody in the world seems to have even just a convincing strategy.

                Even just picking a role from the many elements from which to propose a move is already difficult.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Try to dream: how would you want Mindanao to look like in the future?

                Then think of ways to get there. Focus on solutions, less on problems.

                You need to have that. Otherwise you get caught up ONLY in the present.

              • mindanaoan says:

                We just want peaceful coexistence. The extremists want to exterminate us. We want to defeat the extremists, the moderates cry foul. If you don’t even see that problem, you are not grounded in the present, you are dreaming of your solution.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                You live in Mindanao, that is why your opinion is very important. It is very hard to see the real situation if you are living far away. Maybe even in Manila people do not really know.

                If they do not know, how can they act on it. We only know what we are told about.

        • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

          Some Pnoy haters are so into repeating this tiring “nobel peace prize” that our president is “coveting”…somehow putting malice in his quest to end war between brother Filipinos.

          Is it now wrong to exert every possible effort to save this chance of finding a peaceful solution to this seemingly endless war so no more sons, brothers and fathers will come home in body bags and sealed coffins draped in Filipino flags?

          • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

            Yaiiks…this is what happened when i tried to recover a lost comment, i accidentally copied everthing twice, i deleted a paragraph, overlooked another repeated one,….hahaha..

            .time to hit the sack, is that how they say it…goodnight everyone…

            • Joe America says:

              I took care of the duplicate paragraph, but . . . sorry about the paragraph you deleted. I can’t fix that one. 🙂

              • Thanks, Joe… no problem, I also deleted a duplicate paragraph, didn’t see another which you took care of, the brief message is intact.

                Do you also see this tiring “nobel peace prize coveting” accusation being regularly thrown to the president? Why can’t they offer suggestions (like what PiE did in this blog) instead of sarcastic remarks like that?

                The risks pointed out by PiE should be tackled and discussed in detail by congress and the convenor group.

                Budget allocations should be under strict monitoring by COA (of the national government) which should be given full security, moral and judicious financial support for them to be able to do their job without intimidation, fear, or pressure.

                The resident auditor in Makati, I think, had been subjected to these kinds of threats and/or pressure as Ms. Mendoza has testified to in the Senate Sub-Committee and other hearings.

                I just wish that there is a wi-fi connection in Bicol (where we will be spending the Holy Week) so I can concentrate on the points raised by PiE and you in this very important issue. Right now, I’m still chasing signatories, the staff has no direct line with them… hahaha

              • Joe America says:

                I feel your pain.

                Political people basically think in distortions and lies, so the bit about coveting a Nobel peace prize is sheer lunacy. The President has never said anything about it, but by coining the phrase, they give it legitimacy. It’s the Binay method. Sadly, it works among a greatly superstitious people who believe rumor over fact because it is somehow intoxicating. It may be the ruin of the Philippines, actually.

                I would hope the legislature is looking exactly at the points PiE has raised here. I see nothing that would destroy an earnest agreement if it is properly addressed. Assuming both parties are serious about peace and prosperity, and do not have ambitions beyond that.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Both sides are, but my Macchiavellian mode of thinking tells me that there are ALWAYS cross-purposes in real life, people being what they are.

                My three posts above regarding contract negotiations and my lawyer’s attitude says it all.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Regarding Peace Prize: it is very unlikely that the Nobel Peace Prize Committee would seriously consider a nomination for a President from his own government. These are serious and dignified people sitting in Oslo who will not take such epal bs.

       – theoretically the Palace could nominate the President, those who may nominate are:

                Members of national assemblies and governments of states

                Members of international courts

                Members of Institut de Droit International

                University rectors; professors of social sciences, history, philosophy, law and theology; directors of peace research institutes and foreign policy institutes

                Persons who have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize

                Board members of organizations that have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize

                Active and former members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee; (proposals by members of the Committee to be submitted no later than at the first meeting of the Committee after February 1)

                Former advisers to the Norwegian Nobel Committee

                But then again you have these preconditions:

                The candidates eligible for the Nobel Peace Prize are those persons or organizations nominated by qualified individuals. A nomination for yourself will not be taken into consideration, even if you meet the criteria for nominators.

                The Palace nominating Noynoy would be practically self-nomination, those in Oslo would say Skol and laugh a hearty Nordic laugh after being stern and serious for 3 seconds. Noynoy is not stupid or epal. Those that think he is ARE like that themselves. Q.E.D.

              • Joe America says:

                Q.E.D. quite nicely, thank you.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                The Nobel Peace Prize committee are serious people who are not easily fooled. They would check the peace process in Mindanao:

                At the first meeting of the Nobel Committee after the February 1 deadline for nominations, the Committee’s Permanent Secretary presents the list of the year’s candidates. The Committee may on that occasion add further names to the list, after which the nomination process is closed, and discussion of the particular candidates begins. In the light of this first review, the Committee draws up the so-called short list – i.e. the list of candidates selected for more thorough consideration. The short list typically contains from twenty to thirty candidates.

                The candidates on the short list are then considered by the Nobel Institute’s permanent advisers. In addition to the Institute’s Director and Research Director, the body of advisers generally consists of a small group of Norwegian university professors with broad expertise in subject areas with a bearing on the Peace Prize. The advisers usually have a couple of months in which to draw up their reports. Reports are also occasionally requested from other Norwegian and foreign experts.

                When the advisers’ reports have been presented, the Nobel Committee embarks on a thorough-going discussion of the most likely candidates. In the process, the need often arises to obtain additional information and updates about candidates from additional experts, often foreign. As a rule, the Committee reaches a decision only at its very last meeting before the announcement of the Prize at the beginning of October.

                Obviously those making the black propaganda against Noynoy think that the members of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee are like some Filipino judges. How totally stupid…

              • karl garcia says:

                The inventor of Dynamite wanted people to forget that he invented them. So have a Nobel Peace prize.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                It is like Bill Gates doing a lot for charity.

      • Mccoy says:

        I was born,raised and lived my whole life here in Davao, able to visit a lot of parts here in Mindanao, including North Cotabato, pass through Maguindanao as well.

        Proper education and good governance on the people living in ARMM and North Cotabato is the primary thing i can see as the solution. BBL won’t really addressed the issue of poverty and neglect experience by the common people on those places.

        Here’s to me hoping that both the government and citizens of this country will help educate our fellow Filipinos in those areas and for us common folks to condemned those in power on those regions that has abused and neglected their constituents.

        I recognized that the issue is in a way complicated and that my proposal may not really addressed it due to the simpleness of it, but maybe the issue might not be complicated…

    • karl garcia says:

      “”How does the BBL deal with this question? Art. II, Section 1 will give the natives of Mindanao before the ‘conquest’ (1521?) the name “bangsamoro”, a word coined by the MNLF in the 1960’s to refer to the collection of tribes of muslim filipinos. Lest you make a mistake of including the lumads as bangsamoro, Section 2 explicitly exludes them. How about the bisaya-speaking mindanaoans who were also here before the ‘conquest’? No mention.”
      The BBL is supposed To be the constitutional version of the unconstiutional MO AD.
      Definitely the lumads were a concern of The SC
      Violation of Constitutional Rights of Lumads

      Under the MOA-AD, the Executive branch also commits to incorporate all the Lumads in Mindanao, who are non-Muslims, into the Bangsamoro people who are Muslims. There are 18 distinct Lumad groups in Mindanao with their own ancestral domains and their own indigenous customs, traditions and beliefs. The Lumads have lived in Mindanao long before the arrival of Islam and Christianity. For centuries, the Lumads have resisted Islam, a foreign religion like Christianity. To this day, the Lumads proudly continue to practice their own indigenous customs, traditions and beliefs.

      Suddenly, without the knowledge and consent of the Lumads, the Executive branch has erased their identity as separate and distinct indigenous peoples. The MOA-AD, in paragraph 1 on Concepts and Principles, provides:

      It is the birthright of all Moros and all Indigenous peoples of Mindanao to identify themselves and be accepted as “Bangsamoros”. The Bangsamoro people refers to those who are natives or original inhabitants of Mindanao and its adjacent islands including Palawan and the Sulu archipelago at the time of conquest or colonization and their descendants whether mixed or of full native blood. Spouses and their descendants are classified as Bangsamoro. The freedom of choice of the indigenous people shall be respected. (Emphasis supplied)

      The declaration that it is the “birthright of x x x all Indigenous peoples of Mindanao to identify themselves and be accepted as ‘Bangsamoros'” is cultural genocide. It erases by a mere declaration the identities, culture, customs, traditions and beliefs of 18 separate and distinct indigenous groups in Mindanao. The “freedom of choice” given to the Lumads is an empty formality because officially from birth they are already identified as Bangsamoros. The Lumads may freely practice their indigenous customs, traditions and beliefs, but they are still identified and known as Bangsamoros under the authority of the BJE.

      The MOA-AD divests the Lumads of their ancestral domains and hands over possession, ownership and jurisdiction of their ancestral domains to the BJE. In paragraphs 2, 3 and 6 on Concepts and Principles, the MOA-AD gives ownership over the Bangsamoros’ ancestral domain to the Bangsamoro people, defines the ancestral domain of the Bangsamoros, and vests jurisdiction and authority over such ancestral domain in the BJE, thus:

      2. It is essential to lay the foundation of the Bangsamoro homeland in order to address the Bangsamoro people’s humanitarian and economic needs as well as their political aspirations. Such territorial jurisdictions and geographic areas being the natural wealth and patrimony represent the social, cultural and political identity and pride of all the Bangsamoro people. Ownership of the homeland is vested exclusively in them by virtue of their prior rights of occupation that had inhered in them as sizeable bodies of people, delimited by their ancestors since time immemorial, and being the first politically organized dominant occupants.

      3. x x x Ancestral domain and ancestral land refer to those held under claim of ownership, occupied or possessed, by themselves or through the ancestors of the Bangsamoro people, communally or individually x x x.

      x x x x

      6. Both Parties agree that the Bangsamoro Juridical Entity (BJE) shall have the authority and jurisdiction over the Ancestral Domain and Ancestral lands, including both alienable and non-alienable lands encompassed within their homeland and ancestral territory, as well as the delineation of ancestral domains/lands of the Bangsamoro people located therein. (Emphasis supplied)

      After defining the Bangsamoro people to include all the Lumads, the MOA-AD then defines the ancestral domain of the Bangsamoro people as the ancestral domain of all the Bangsamoros, which now includes the ancestral domains of all the Lumads. The MOA-AD declares that exclusive ownership over the Bangsamoro ancestral domain belongs to the Bangsamoro people. The MOA-AD vests jurisdiction and authority over the Bangsamoros’ ancestral domain in the BJE. Thus, the Lumads lost not only their separate identities but also their ancestral domains to the Bangsamoros and the BJE.

      The incorporation of the Lumads as Bangsamoros, and the transfer of their ancestral domains to the BJE, without the Lumads’ knowledge and consent,70 violate the Constitutional guarantee that the “State recognizes and promotes the rights of indigenous cultural communities within the framework of national unity and development.”71 The incorporation also violates the Constitutional guarantee that the “State, subject to the provisions of this Constitution and national development policies and programs, shall protect the rights of indigenous cultural minorities to their ancestral lands to ensure their economic, social, and cultural well-being.”72

      These Constitutional guarantees, as implemented in the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act of 1997, grant the Lumads “the right to participate fully, if they so chose, at all levels of decision-making in matters which may affect their rights, lives and destinies.”73 Since the Executive branch kept the MOA-AD confidential until its publication in the Philippine Daily Inquirer on 4 August 2008, the day before its scheduled signing in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, there could have been no participation by the 18 Lumad groups of Mindanao in their incorporation into the Bangsamoro. This alone shows that the Executive branch did not consult, much less secure the consent, of the Lumads on their rights, lives and destinies under the MOA-AD. In fact, representatives of the 18 Lumad groups met in Cagayan de Oro City and announced on 27 August 2008, through their convenor Timuay Nanding Mudai, that “we cannot accept that we are part of the Bangsamoro.”74″”
      PiE or anyone,
      IS the Lumad issue resolved in the BBL?

      • karl garcia says:

        By not mentioning them does that erase the problem?

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        I did not look at that aspect so deeply. Search for “indigenous” in the document, you will find some provisions, but I am not so sure if they meet all the requirements..

        • karl garcia says:

          In the preamble …We the bangsamoro people together with other inhabitants of bangsamoro.. ..
          so they mention other inhabitants in the preamble…..
          Article II
          Mentions that the inhabitant have the right to be part of bangsamoro….
          Question, Can they wave that right?

          • karl garcia says:

            I did not see the exchange of Ancient Mariner and Joe.

          • Joe America says:

            As I read the document, I was left with the understanding that Bangsamoro is the territory, and a form of government, and within that, all indigenous people have the right to live according to their customs. The larger groups will have representatives in the parliament. The document is thorough about spelling out human rights and non-discrimination provisions. The question to be asked of Lumads is, “are you Filipino or not?”

            I’m (almost) Filipino, I live in a province. The provincial government is stupid. I have to live with it. When one is a part of a community, one sacrifices, I think. Or there is no community.

            • karl garcia says:

              Why is that their premble not say,” we the Filipino people of bangsa Moro ” instead we have “we the bangsa moro people and other inhabitants.. include all just say “we the people of bangsamoro…

              • Joe America says:

                Excellent question.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Edgar Lores made an excellent suggestion regarding the symbolic aspects of the BBL that I quoted and highlighted. These matters may seem trivial, but in state affairs they never are, being semi-religious.Or try flying the Philippine flag upside down, it means war.

                I remember the Catholic Church in Woodside, Queens NY were there was an American flag IN the Church – meaning in the US the stars and stripes are the main thing and not ANY church. The fact that the BBL mentions Filipino only once or twice and the Republic of the Philippines not one single time does mean something to me, just a few changes and you have the Basic Law of a Malaysian state, immediately applicable.

                The German constitution is to this day called the Basic Law of the Federal Republic. A basic law in international practice is a law given to a non-sovereign territory that may however one day become sovereign like Germany became with the 1990 2+4 treaty. During the promulgation of Germany’s Basic Law in 1949, Germany was non-sovereign, being under allied supervision which was only lifted in 1955, allowing for rearmament.

                Nonetheless the Allied Powers retained reserved rights over Germany until 1990, meaning that first of all they had bases all over the place, there are less of them now and they are now NATO partner bases in status; and they had the right to tap phones and much more. There is an unconfirmed rumor that every German Chancellor until Helmut Kohl had to sign a secret protocol upon assuming office to uphold democracy and Western allegiance.

                Germany’s gold reserves are only NOW being shipped back from New York and London, those in Paris go by train. Meaning the Allies effectively had the power to freeze assets in case Germany decided to go looking for Lebensraum again, thanks i7sharp.


                Maybe similar ideas may be applied to Bangsamoro:

                – defined places where the AFP has bases

                – supervision for the next six years

                – after that reserved rights for 12 years

                – every BM Chief Minister makes an oath to the Republic of the Philippines

                – Bangsamoro assets are kept under safeguard in Manila for at least 20 years

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                The point being, those who have done bad things in the past have to EARN trust back.

                The BBL shows total distrust of the Republic, Filipinos and AFP from the Moros side.

                Fine, we must earn their trust back I know, they must earn our trust back as well.

      • Yes, I echo the question. And what other groups are being excluded in this draft BBL?

        Lumad in Mindanao, by Faina Ulindang

  19. karl garcia says:

    My unfinished outine of artice VII above partly answers my question…. am sure that preamble wordings wil be modified to adjust to all sensitivities and sensibilities….
    Section 6. Election for Reserved Seats for Non-Moro Indigenous Peoples. –

    7 a. Primacy of customary laws and practices;

    b. Primacy of consensus building;
    c. Acceptability ofthe community;

    d. Inciusivity and full participation;

    e. Representation of the collective interests and aspirations of non-Moro
    indigenous peoples;

    f. Sustainability and strengthening of Indigenous Political Structures;

    g. Track record and capability; and

    h. Gender equity……..
    I am sure the Lumads won’t be bypassed in the Summit


  20. josephivo says:

    I’m lost. So many debates going on, just to mention a few.

    The main (and only one in tabloids) discussion nation wide.
    1- Trapo politics: How to harm the opponent, how to strengthen/weaken alliances, spinning, framing, false rumors… the complete toolkit of trapo politics at work…

    In this blog.
    2- Religion: Islam and its spectrum from deadly extremists to sedate, half tribal local communities, the half divine sharia or “the path” of how to submit to God versus 100% human human rights…
    3- Federalism: what should be decided regionally, what can be delegated to the regions in the current legal context, imperial Manila in relation to part of the empire…
    4- Economic development: who “owns” natural resources, responsibility in local self-reliance or in centralized decision making, stability as requirement for investment…
    5- Fight or negotiate: who are the (real) opponents, how to build an “enemy” to fight or build trust to negotiate, who should have the legal monopoly of violence…
    6- Historic injustice: consensus building, amount of retributions, mechanisms of reconciliation…
    7- The legal document: balance, wording, alignment with constitution…

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Three more aspects:

      – symbolic aspects addressed by edgar lores. In politics these are never insignificant.

      – control aspects I have written about with the analogy of postwar Allied control of Germany

      – negotiation aspects I have written about above with reference to my lawyer and gambling

      There are three kinds of people in the world: those who can count, and those who can’t…

      • Joe America says:

        hahahaha, yes, three kinds . . and as Yogi would say, 90% agree with you but the other half do not.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          And to complete things, add the strange wisdom of karl garcia plus my stuff and yours:

          – if you drink moderately, take some snake oil in the evening and eat a frog in the morning, then you will be fine for the rest of the day along the Missisipi.

          – if at lunchtime you get hungry and still have elephant meat left in one of your freezers, make a steak, and remember to feed all steakholders but not the alligators.

          – if in the afternoon on the tennis court you are still a ball and not a player, remember that you have to be a ballboy before you become a player, so the ball must become a boy first.

          And if in the evening you go too far with the girl you are dating and she slaps you, remember the wise words of Gary Lising and say I was deeply touched

          • Joe America says:

            🙂 Smitten, so to speak . . .

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Yeah, I guess. Part of my inspiration for the article is the Ecuadorian journalist I am dating. But I take care not to go too far south too soon and always know where the equator is.

              When playing for keeps you have to bold but cautious. Which brings us back to BBL…

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                The main difference being that in personal matters you have a choice and both sides can take their time to find out whether things will work out and find the golden middle way.

                In state and business matters you often have not much of a choice and time pressure, so you have to put in the professional aspect into it, plus the trust-building and safety aspect, to complement the aspect of growing and fine-tuning the mutual understanding = MU.

    • Joe America says:

      I think that happens when we try to examine what is akin to a Constitution. The central issue is “good faith”, and how to express it and interpret correctly. Also, seeing the future. When you don’t trust your business partner, you build in controls, and that’s what I think is the main lesson here. As trust is built, the controls can be eased. But it would be a huge mistake to let a beast loose with no pen or tranquilizer darts available.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        My father once told me: Trust, but keep your POWDER dry, as the Americans used to say. Pronouncing powder with a Yankee accent.

  21. PinoyInEurope says:

    Internationally accepted meaning of :

    The term basic law is used in some places as an alternative to “constitution”, implying it is a temporary but necessary measure without formal enactment of constitution. A basic law is either a codified constitution, or in countries with uncodified constitutions, a law given to have constitution powers and effect. The name is usually used to imply an interim or transitory nature, or avoid attempting a claim to being “the highest law”, often for religious reasons. In West Germany the term “Basic Law” (Grundgesetz) was used to indicate that the Basic Law was provisional until the ultimate reunification of Germany. But in 1990 no new constitution was adopted and instead the Basic Law was adopted throughout the entire German territory. Basic law is entrenched in that it overrides ordinary ‘statute law’ passed by the legislature.

    The Special Administrative Regions of the People’s Republic of China, namely Hong Kong and Macau, have basic laws as their constitutional documents. The basic laws are the highest authority, respectively, in the territories, while the rights of amendment and interpretation rest with the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      This is why certain terms like:

      – territory

      – intergovernmental relations

      – Filipino citizenship mentioned only once

      – Always referring to Central Government instead of Republic of the Philippines
      (keeping possible options open for the CG to be the Federation of Malaysia maybe?)

      – asymmetric relationship between CG and BG, no clear statement that BM is part of RP

      are NOT harmless. They are like certain legal terms that can make or break you in contracts. I am not an expert in international law, but it is imperative that international law experts clarify publicly what the implications of these terms are, and propose adjustments.

      This aspect I left out in the article, because I am not fully competent to evaluate it.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Which makes mischievous me get ideas: IF the ones supposed to their job of evaluating the BBL in the Philippines do NOT do their job thoroughly enough, I will invest up to 900 Euro and pay my lawyer to look at MOA-AD, CAB and BBL and make a PDF evaluation.

        90 Euro is the friendship rate per hour he charges me, so 10 hours for him, I will have to invest at least 50 hours of work to prepare things so that he makes it in the 10 hours time.

        As a concerned Pinoy in Europe, living among clever Catholic Bavarians, who have state receptions with lots of bishops in them and where the village priest and mayor still run things in the countryside, with a Bavarian Lutheran top dog IT lawyer, one of the best corporate counsels there are and former trial lawyer as lawyer and friend who is married to a Lutheran Indonesian woman of the Batak tribe in Sumatra and understands Malays, I will watch what is important to the future of the country, so I do not go home to Lebanon.

        Another man in my old-boy network is a German businessman married to an Indonesian who is a coach and intermediary for Germans who do business with and in Indonesia, also very familiar with the Filipino way of doing things and with business links to everywhere. Might have some information about the way Moros do business and negotiate, may be a good resource even if not because he knows the way Indonesians are very intimately.

        But I do hope that those responsible will do their work well. Will watch the result though.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      BTW the Polish and Russian condition for the German reunification treaty was that Germany amend Article 23 of the German Basic Law which became a real constitution.

      Article 23 of the Basic Law provided other German states, initially not included in the field of application of the Basic Law, with the right to declare their accession (“Beitritt”) at a later date. Therefore although the Basic Law was considered provisional, it allowed more German states to join its field of application. On one side, it gave the Federal Republic of Germany – composed as it was in 1949 – no right to negotiate, reject or deny another German state’s wish to declare its accession to the FRG; while on the other side an acceding state would have to accept all laws so far legislated under the institutions of the FRG as they were. Article 23, altered after 1990, read as follows:

      Former Article 23 of the Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany
      For the time being, this Basic Law shall apply in the territory of the Länder of Baden, Bavaria, Bremen, Greater Berlin,[3] Hamburg, Hesse, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate, Schleswig-Holstein, Württemberg-Baden, and Württemberg-Hohenzollern.[4] In other parts of Germany it shall be put into force on their accession.[5]

      Whereas the West German state had gained restricted sovereignty in May 1955, the Sarrois rejected in a referendum (1955) the transformation of their protectorate into an independent state. The Saar Treaty then opened the way for the Saar to declare its “Beitritt” (accession) to the West German state under Article 23, including the new Saarland into the field of application of the Basic Law. With effect of 1 January 1957 the Federal Republic included all of Western Germany (cf. Little Reunification with the Saar).

      The Communist regime in East Germany fell in 1990; the parliament of the GDR (East Germany) declared the accession of the GDR according to Article 23 to the Federal Republic of Germany, making unification an act unilaterally decided by the last East German parliament. East Germany’s declaration of accession (Beitrittserklärung) included the East German territories into the field of application of the Basic Law. After the accession of East Germany to the Federal Republic of Germany Article 23 was repealed. Rather than adopting a new constitution under Article 146 of the Basic Law, the Bundestag (Parliament of Germany) only amended Article 146 and the Preamble of the Basic Law.

      The Poles and Russians did not want Germany to have the possibility to annex parts of Poland and Russia that were formerly German by migrating and then making referendums.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Finally, I would like to say thanks to my Social Studies Teacher in Germany – after High School in the Philippines I took three more years in a German school, they have K-13 here, some states have K-12 and are debating about removing it: BACK to K-13 though.

        One of the things we did in 12th grade was to go through the entire Basic Law of Germany, which is available as a free pamphlet from government information offices.

        This exercise 30 years ago trained me for being able to go through the BBL recently.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          It was ASSUMED that we would all read it. In two weeks of freewheeling but structured discussions, we went through the different parts of the basic law, looked at the pros and cons, the teacher explained the reasons for certain things, we questioned them.

          So no rote memorization here, the principle being that you can look facts up – we all had the pamphlet on the table – but understanding and analyzing is what counts.

          Or like a professor of computer science which I studied later had on his door:

          DATA is not INFORMATION is not KNOWLEDGE is not WISDOM

          His oral exams were tough, two hours face to face with only him, he would not only quiz for facts but ask you to explain a practical case where the things he had taught were applied. So not just understanding and analyzing, also applying knowledge to practical examples.

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Final stage: my master’s thesis. Had to find my own way, researching my own sources.

            A little bit of coaching from an assistant professor every two weeks, only presentation to my professor every 2 months thats it. Didn’t learn to be like this overnight guys.

            I went through many trials and tribulations, failed an oral exam because I was nervous – imagine a Pinoy who is not used to being stared at being stared at two hours straight by a German professor who is taking you apart, revealing where you don’t really know shit…

        • karl garcia says:

          K 12 that reminds me of the DEPED sec who was my high school teacher….the one here who reminds us of eduation is Joseph Hivo who makes me want to trace my Flemmish roots…PiE lend me some money I want to go visit Belgium the birthplace of my mom’s grand father.

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Learn some basic SAP, then I you can pay it back in work, like I give you 5 Euro per hour and bill you to my customers for 50 Euro :evilgrin:

            Ay bawal pala – the minimum hourly wage since 1. January 2015 is 8.50 Euros. 😦

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Realistically, what I may want to do is set up a center for SAP on the job training.

              TESDA-promoted courses maybe for vocational programmers who learn on real outsourced software development projects, I have a partner with his own SAP system.

              Those who have proven that they are good workers may be flown in for jobs like rollouts or local support. Maybe giancarloangulo knows more about what is possible. Real plans.

              • karl garcia says:

                That would be grand, but SAP partners here are the giant Conglomerates and MNCs,but you should know better.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                My business partner and former boss is a small SAP partner in Germany.

                Our customers are middle- to large corporations, we lack programmers though.

                So he has the customers and the SAP status, I will offer him the programming team.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                If that does not work, I have other options. SAP Romania itself and my network there.

                SAP Portugal also, I know one of the bosses. To produce custom software cheap. For the European market, for my profit and for the benefit of the Philippines – win-win.

            • karl garcia says:

              Shortchanging me huh. 🙂 I left the IT stuff to my wife, was with Accenture now with IBM. Am happy to assist my dad while he still can work in his 70s. Pet projects were AFP modernization, Maritime legislation,National defense act among others

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Do not get angry becos joke only, like my slum friends from UP Balara used to say.

                One of them, son of our gardener, an electrician who stole electricity from UP, studied to become an electronics engineer and last thing I heard from my former yaya he was at Intel.

                Accenture and IBM – I know, in the Philippines there are hardly any IT SMEs. The kind of career I have here as a freelancer moving between different SAP solution providers would not have been possible back home. Would be great to seed a Filipino SAP SME outfit.

                My business partner and former boss runs a SAP partner firm with under 20 fixed staff. Well he has freelancers like me for special projects and all staff and freelancers are allrounders and top dogs, unlike the overspecialized people you have at Accenture.

                Topped the Accenture assessment center test in 1996 especially in terms of confidence, but decided to join a German IT startup because it gave me more room to grow my skills in different directions to form my own business later with possible connection to Philippines and accomplish the mission Pisay inculcated which was to advance Philippine development. Almost 20 years later I am close to reaching that goal, I am almost ready, the Philippines is close to ready. All I have to do now is check out the next steps. 🙂

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                The IT startup – which became multinational – was later bought by a Canadian multinational and I left them. But my time there allowed me to form a top-level network that I still live from until today. These are what I call my Royal Navy contacts.

                Another company where the boss is a self-made man who was born in Hamburg’s red light district and can until today say hello to the bosses there is a company which I worked for later and for which I also subcontract. This is my Captain Barbosa pirate contact.

                In the Philippines you are either from the street or in the modern business world, the two do not mix. In pragmatic Germany your performance is important not background. People from the top who are not performers move down after some time, performers move up. Performers with background are of course very much on top and non-performers without background live in social housing. But people like Manny Villar happen more over here.

              • sonny says:

                Karl, here I go again. What is an SME? hindi ko alam. thanks.

              • karl garcia says:

                Small and medium sized enterprises
                it ‘s ok to ask. Please Don’t get offended by my jokes…it could be confused with other jargon like subject matter experts.

              • sonny says:

                In fact, when I first saw SME I immediately thought Society of Mechanical Engineers. That couldn’t be right. Also what does “epal” mean. Until now I don’t fully comprehend the word “jeproks”. I’m just getting used to hearing “bagets”.

              • karl garcia says:

                Epal Pig Latin for Papel. Pumapapel is seeking attention,wants to be center of attraction,butting in on others, an extra in a cast…..
                Jeproks is a hippie,loose morals,a junkie
                Bagets is a teen ager, or a newbie

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Jeproks is still used in the Philippines? That slang word came about in the 1970s, when young people from the “Projects” in Quezon City imitated American hippies and smoked marijuana. Project 6 and other places, I wonder if they are still called that way.

              • karl garcia says:

                Sonny ang mahal ng ticket sa Paquiao Mayweather….a ticket to Manila is much cheaper.

              • karl garcia says:

                Jeproks is passe jologs is in

              • sonny says:

                Tagalog ng 1969 ang salita ko. Ngayon, kapag kinausap ako sa PH with the slang phrases, that’s it, turista na ako sa sariling bayan. Conio English pa ang pandinig sa ‘kin. Teacher ko sa Panitikan si Policarpio Dangalio, author of the book, hindi na rin niya maintindihan ang sariling wika. Yikes! 😦

          • karl garcia says:

            Ivo ….sorry Joseph

    • i7sharp says:

      “Basic Law … constitution”

      Mag-enrol tayo dito. Libre:

  22. PinoyInEurope says:

    Like Lenin said: Learn, learn, learn.

    He would have done an MBA in modern times.

    • i7sharp says:


      Kindly elucidate on Lenin vis-a-vis U.S. Constitution.

      btw, I have known for some time of
      but have enrolled yet. I believe I should.

      My little brain is probably made more for googling (with hope for serendipitous results)
      than for studying.

      A search for “U.S. Constitution Sabbath”
      gave this as one of the many results:
      “How the Laws of the United States Explains the Sabbath”
      where I found some tidbits worth looking deeper into.

      A search for “U.S. Constitution Sabbath Luther” will no doubt also give interesting results.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Well, learning is always good and Filipinos are often lazy when it comes to that.

        Even I was, I had to learn things the hard way. Mind is a terrible thing to waste.

        Your initiative goes in the direction of learning. We also had that topic above.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          I was lucky to have rigorous training in Germany. Mind is like muscle in a way.

          Just like Pacquiao would not have been what he is now without his US coach.

        • i7sharp says:


          Thanks, but, sorry, I still fail to see the connection.

          About learning:
          “Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
          2 Timothy 3:7 KJV

          Am still learning.

          About Lenin:
          Lenin started the Russian Communist
          revolution, and as a result tens of millions of
          innocent people died. He had no scruples about
          sentencing not only individuals but whole
          categories of people to death – because he claimed
          to want a better future for mankind. It was said
          that “he loved mankind so much that he was
          ready to kill all men for the benefit of humanity.”
          Lenin’s older brother had been hanged for
          his attempt to kill the Russian emperor. Lenin
          shared his brother’s ideal to get rid of oppressors,

          page 13 JESUS (Friend to Terrorists)

          but he thought that individual acts of terror
          would not achieve this end. He says in his
          writings that a party of well-trained professional
          revolutionaries have to seize power in the state.
          These will kill their opponents wholesale, after
          which, in time, the happy Socialist society will
          arise. He died disillusioned.
          Excerpted from the book of which I mentioned in

          “Shmita in Luisita, …”

          Richard Wurmbrand, who wrote the book in 1995 under a pseudonym, was born in Bucharest, lived in his early years in Istanbul.
          Initially, the focus of his ministry was on believers persecuted by Communism.
          Later on, the focus was directed to terrorists.

          Another excerpt from the book. Jesus (Friend to Terrorists):
          THE PERSON writing this is a Christian pastor.
          For decades I have followed the actions,
          pronouncements and, where they existed, the
          publications of terrorist groups in different
          Today, I realize that mankind has entered a
          new age. The era of Fascist domination has
          passed. The age when the Soviet dictator
          representing the Eastern Communist bloc could tell
          Americans “We will bury you!” has also passed.
          The cold war has passed to the history books. We
          have now entered the age of terrorism.
          Terrorist groups have mushroomed on all
          continents and claim dedicated supporters and

  23. I have saved this article by the 21st Supreme Court Chief Justice of the Philippines, Artemio V. Panganiban . as additional source of comparative information, a record of opinions of SC justices Conchita Morales-Carpio, now OMB, the current most senior justice, Antonio T. Carpio, and the then Atty. Ma. Lourdes Sereno, now SC Chief, three justices who I look up to for their principles and clarity of analysis.

    This is regarding the “Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain (MOA-AD) between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and declared unconstitutional the underlying “associative” relationship between the government and the Bangsamoro Juridical Entity. Justice Carpio unflinchingly declared unconstitutional not only the underlying “associative” concept but, quite significantly, also 36 specific provisions of the MOA-AD, the shadows of which can be gleaned in the BBL.”

    “CJ Sereno’s position. Although not a member of the Court when the North Cotabato case was decided, Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P. A. Sereno, nonetheless, participated in the controversy as counsel for Sen. (now Senate President) Franklin M. Drilon, who was an intervenor.

    Her 72-page memorandum was a brilliant defense of the Constitution and veritable source of her mindset on the conduct of peace negotiations. She detailed “the constitutional violations … [that] eroded the sovereignty of the Republic of the Philippines …, split its national identity … [and] created a state within a state—a concept alien and antithetical to the one sovereign nation embodied in the Constitution.”

    Read more:

  24. jameboy says:

    There is no easy solution to the Moro problem. It will entail a lot of sacrifice on their part, which they are not known for, to make things work for them while working in tandem with the government. They have to do all the dirty works to even get a decent start on how to navigate under the proposed BBL.

    Under the BBL, they will decide their own fate and find solutions to their problems. The conflict there is, deciding their fate is exclusive to them. Being Islam as a way of life, and unless it involves more money, the government would be off limits to what solution the Moros would opt for regarding their fate.

    So, it is foolish to even think that the government can still impose itself under the BBL by dictating what the Moros can do or not do when it is very clear that they are, as Muslims, in charge of their own destiny under the proposed BBL. Allow Muslim females to marry non-Muslim male? Yeah, right, good luck to that. 🙂

    Allow religious freedom? On whose terms? Saying it is one thing but enforcing it is another thing. You don’t dictate to people who have their own set of laws that will govern them regardless if it is subservient or not to the national law.

    Enforce the national law and restrict a modified Sharia to marriage and inheritance? Enforce this or that, remove this or that, etc.? What the hell we crafted the BBL for if we’re going to continue to ‘dictate’ to people whose intention, in the first place, was to get rid of us for meddling and influencing their lives? The creation of the BBL is the Moros way of telling the national government to keep its hands to itself and shut up.

    It hurts but I agree. 😦

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Well, I made my analysis based mainly on the risks for the Republic of the Philippines and ignored internal Bangsamoro matters exactly because they are hard to influence.

      And I left political desirability of BBL outside scope because that is a hard question.

      But if we are to leave them to themselves, what has priority for me is the Republic and the Christian Filipinos who then still live in Bangsamoro, if they stay long is another question.

      • i7sharp says:

        Manny Pacquiao and Tim Tebow.
        They can probably help minimize. if not solve, the problem there:

      • jameboy says:

        Pinoy, it’s not about your analysis it’s a comment on the whole BBL issue. 🙂

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          I know – and my comment to your comment is: if it really is the only choice to leave them alone, then how can we do it with minimum risk to ourselves – which was my analysis.

          I am not really for BBL if there are other solutions, but I put myself through the thought experiment – let us imagine it is the only way, then how can it be done with minimum risk?

          In fact I ask myself the question – does the majority of people in Bangsamoro really want the BBL which was negotiated ONLY with the MILF? Do they want this Sharia stuff?


          But the real political decisions are up to those in Bangsamoro and the Philippines to make. I live abroad, if things really go crazy I go home just for short vacations thats it.

          Now people have every chance to do some thinking by themselves and use their rights. Might even be that BBL is unconstitutional like MOA-AD so go to the Supreme Court.

          Now if people act without foresight like so often, ewan ko na. Wala na talagang pag-asa.


          But then again, I see that there might be some political maturation. I am still very hopeful.

          • jameboy says:

            if it really is the only choice to leave them alone, then how can we do it with minimum risk to ourselves – which was my analysis. – PinoyInEurope
            Unlike the ‘monster’ of Dr. Frankenstein, we’re not going to leave the Moros to themselves. Remember, we’re the capitalist on this exercise and as such we don’t want to go bankrupt. Hence, it is only fitting that we overlook how funds are being utilize and its use maximize.

            But like Dr. Frankenstein’s ‘monster’ we can only go so far and intervene in areas where our concerns lie. Other than that, the ‘monster’ is free to do what it wants to do. Remember, we gave the ‘monster’ the right to think and the capability to act on such thought.

            So, practically, we are in the same position as Dr. Frankenstein in that we step aside the moment our creation starts to walk and talk. That means, we only have one option to resort to so that good things will happen as we expect them to be.

            Pray. 🙂

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              And keep it on a leash. Control the money, the borders, the arms. Let the monster grow economically and culturally and hope it becomes something more normal with time.

              In case prayer does not help, make sure you have enough guns on the ready. Learn from the Americans on this. They pray to God a lot but have their rifles ready just in case.

              Trust in God but make sure your Winchester rifle is ready and you know how to shoot.

            • sonny says:

              Whatever gleam the Philippines was in Teddy Roosevelt’s eye, the American troops under “blackjack” Pershing and Woods, sealed what the Spanish began and defined the territory and resources of today’s PH. The Moros inspite of the trail of blood, theirs and ours should now be our compatriots. The hemorrhage must stop! Keep the monuments (we have three of them in the Ilocos) to remind both sides that the future is

              • sonny says:

                OURS by us and them, together.

              • sonny says:

                (There are three watch towers in the Ilocos that were built to warn towns people that slave vintas have been sighted. These plied the coastal towns in Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao and Palawan.)

    • i7sharp says:


      “Enforce the national law and restrict a modified Sharia to marriage and inheritance? Enforce this or that, remove this or that, etc.? What the hell we crafted the BBL for if we’re going to continue to ‘dictate’ to people whose intention, in the first place, was to get rid of us for meddling and influencing their lives? The creation of the BBL is the Moros way of telling the national government to keep its hands to itself and shut up.”

      A guide:
      Shariah Law vs. the [U.S.] Constitution

      Click to access Shariah_VS_Constitution.pdf

      Do we have a
      “Shariah Law vs. the Philippine Constitution”?

      Or, is the foot in the door already?
      I myself don’t know. 😦

      • I had a longish comment planned about the BBL and the Supreme Court but realized mid way that there is a much simpler answer hidden within the words I was writing.

        The BBL is untenable because the Supreme Court is filled with textualist that do not believe that the Constitution is a living document.

        The DAP ruling showed us this.

        I hope I am wrong and I would love to be corrected.

        • Joe America says:

          Ah, that wonderfully simple expression set off fireworks in my comprehension. EXACTLY!!!!!! Brilliant people who become legalistic morons because they lose sight of the REASON for the words.

          • i7sharp says:


            “… the REASON for the words.”

            • i7sharp says:


              “… the REASON for the words.”
              got sent inadvertently.
              I was too tired (from walking the dogs, Buddy and Coco … both boys by the way … after a long day) to make immediate correction or follow-up.

              I had wanted to get a better idea of what made JoeAm opine “… legalistic morons …”

              Perhaps I can cut to the chase and respectfully ask him of what he thinks of this:
              The Originalist Perspective
              An excerpt from The Heritage Guide to the Constitution
              Written constitutionalism implies that those who make, interpret, and enforce the law ought to be guided by the meaning of the United States Constitution–the supreme law of the land–as it was originally written. This view came to be seriously eroded over the course of the last century with the rise of the theory of the Constitution as a “living document” with no fixed meaning, subject to changing interpretations according to the spirit of the times.

              Originalism is championed for a number of fundamental reasons. First, it comports with the nature of a constitution, which binds and limits any one generation from ruling according to the passion of the times. The Framers of the Constitution of 1787 knew what they wereSa about, forming a frame of government for “ourselves and our Posterity.” They did not understand “We the people” to be merely an assemblage of individuals at any one point in time but a “people” as an association, indeed a number of overlapping associations, over the course of many generations, including our own. In the end, the Constitution of 1787 is as much a constitution for us as it was for the Founding generation.



              • Joe America says:

                I’m not a constitutional scholar, but it seems to me that knowledge grows, and with it enlightenment, and if we don’t adjust our rules to fit our greater enlightenment, we risk being unkind or unfair. The enlightenment might be expressed formally as an amendment, or more cautiously as case law that reshapes the original ruling. The beauty of democracy is that, even though such rulings might shift the rules left or right, if they go too far in any direction, they are usually brought back to center. So democracy itself is a living institution. It would be a shame to tie it down according to the rules of our ancestors. We should, of course, try to understand the intentions of our ancestors in writing the document, for there is wisdom there. But there is not unerring foresight.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          The question is, how much leeway do you have for interpretation?

          At what point is a change to the Constitution necessary?

          That is why I left the legal aspect outside and looked only at the contents. Checking for constitutionality and going for charter change is a job for lawyers. Even though I suspect that BBL will need charter change because it is almost federal in nature.

      • sonny says:

        “… Or, is the foot in the door already? …”

        Whose foot in whose door???

        The foot should be the PH and the door should be the Moros. This is the peaceful way. Nevertheless PH must be ready if the Moros can’t and don’t accept this. History and current events tell us the peaceful way is the less probable way. The Spanish and the Americans found this out. So Filipinos brace yourselves. The Moro women and children should also figure in this equation of peace.

  25. PinoyInEurope says:

    The question now is how did the Bangsamoro identity evolve?

    According to Thomas McKenna in his book, Muslim Rebels and Rulers, it was Najeeb Saleeby, a Syrian-born Christian physician who came to the Philippines as a U.S. Army doctor in 1900 and was assigned to Mindanao, who outlined the colonial genesis of Moro-hood. Saleeby was more knowledgeable about the history, culture, and contemporary political culture of the separate Muslim peoples of the Philippines than any other colonial administrator during the US administration. He knew that the various Muslim ethno-linguistic groups were in no sense united, nor did they possess—jointly or individually—a politically potent oppositional Islamic consciousness. He urged the promotion of Muslim unity, not through the preservation or restoration of individual traditional polities (i.e., by means of straightforward indirect rule, but through the invention of a new transcendent Philippine Muslim identity called Morohood. Thus, the name of the “Moro Province” in Mindanao from 1903–20.

    As a result, Saleeby’s Morohood set in motion a process of erosion for which eroded Muslim identities. It began with the southern Philippines. It started by lumping together all the Muslim Filipinos under the derisive moniker “Moro”:” – a word formerly used by the Spanish and the Portuguese to denote all peoples and nations that show even a little similarity of practice with that of the Muslim Moors, Moriscos, Mauros or Mouros of Africa, especially those with Arab or Berber descent.

    This erosion of Muslim identities was further sustained (except for some token recognition that began during the Marcos period) by successive Philippine colonial administrations.

    To compound and confound the situation, Muslim Filipinos parvenus of Central Mindanao in the 1970s, working in collusion with confused and restless members of the Sulu nation and other Muslim ethnic groups, adopted the colonial aberration of “Moro”. On this name they staged an insurgency that seemed justified then because of the mounting feeling of injustice by Muslim people in the face of Christian migration from Luzon and the Visayas. In doing so the Bangsamoro nationalists have subsequently drowned out the diverse identities that comprise Muslims in Mindanao and Sulu through the mobilization of an armed rebellion premised on an ill-conceived “Bangsamoro”.

    • sonny says:

      “… Muslim Filipinos under the derisive moniker “Moro”…”

      I would add: borderline eponymous term meaning a hard-headed maverick. Under more pleasant circumstances, I imagined many of our Olympic swimming and track teams with Philippine Moro athletes like Mona Sulaiman of old.

      • Joe America says:

        . . . hard-headed maverick . . . thanks, in those three (2?) words, you have crystallized several paragraphs running around in my mind.

        • sonny says:

          I hope for approval also from Joseph that I’m not oversimplifying. 🙂

          I had to reach back to childhood stereotypes for that one, Joe.

          • Joe America says:

            Stereotypes are interesting phenomena, useful for expressing generalities or perceived generalities, valuable insofar as one does not attach absolutes to them, or even truth. They are intellectual smoke and we carry the mirrors.

            Gadzooks, you have me thinking like you now . . .

  26. i7sharp says:

    @Joe America

    “I’m not a constitutional scholar, …”

    Joe, neither am I.

    If I have to append titles or credentials to my signature, I would choose
    PLSK (Pinabili lang ng suka sa kanto).

    “… but it seems to me that knowledge grows, and with it enlightenment, and if we don’t adjust our rules to fit our greater enlightenment, we risk being unkind or unfair.

    We should, of course, try to understand the intentions of our ancestors in writing the document, for there is wisdom there. But there is not unerring foresight.”

    Let us take a particular case as an example,
    Any “legalistic morons” you have in mind?

    btw, should we allow marriage between … among … three people?


    • Joe America says:

      (1) The term “legalistic morons” was a literary exaggeration for the context in which it was used and ought not be applied elsewhere.

      (2) You employ the Socratic method of asking questions trying to lead me to a conclusion. It would be quicker if you would just make your point, and put your own belief on the line, rather than put me out on limbs looking for one to saw off.

      (3) I view marriage as a legal contract not a contract between man and God. Legal frameworks are often built on moral principles built upon lessons learned from this religion or that, and generally represent ideals most people believe are good. That is, most laws don’t permit murder, although it is a perfectly fine thing to do if your faith believe in murder or throwing virgins into the volcano. Marriage among three people is generally not accepted in the US (the Mormons had it in their faith until the laws put a stop to it in America) but it is elsewhere. So it depends on the community’s values whether it is appropriate or not. On ships in the old days of sailing ships and months at sea, intercourse with sheep was morally permissible, each ship being a nation in its own right and determining that was better than sailors exercising their physical drives on one another.

      • sonny says:

        ” (3) I view marriage as a legal contract not a contract between man and God. …

        … intercourse with sheep was morally permissible, each ship being a nation in its own right and determining that was better than sailors exercising their physical drives on one another.”

        Joe, you would’ve loved classes in Scholasticism on ethics, metaphysics and Moral casuistry and Catholic existentialism. 🙂 But you know what Yogi says about choices: When you face a fork in the road, take them! 🙂

        • Joe America says:

          I rather think you are right. My education got diverted into numbers, the theoretical aspects of which drove me into the army, and then the ambition to make money rather than intelligence. Now I see the error of my ways, but the latter-day self-discovery is fun nonetheless.

          • sonny says:

            After a friend and I were convinced that Renaisance Man was the ideal, he then drew this ideal as Rambo-like figure – black headband, in heavy black tank-top and bottoms wrapped with two bandoliers, an AK-47 on one hand and a copy of THE PRINCE in the other! I liked it. 🙂

          • sonny says:

            Worked in bank & trust for 11 years. Missed many good experiences there. Got some by osmosis.

  27. PinoyInEurope says:

    @Joe: Which is why constitutions should not be too detailed, but stick to fundamental guidelines.

    Do’s and don’ts – the American Constitution is simple and needed only few Amendments in more than 200 years of existence, while the Philippine Constitution has so many details that you need to cha-cha instead of just changing the laws that implement basic principles that rarely change.

    The simplest moral constitution was what Moses brought down from the mountain, with only ten articles understandable to his unruly masa that were dancing around the Golden Calf.

    As for intentions of the ancestors, a certain Native American tribe has an a rule that chiefs must think of seven generations to come in every decision they make – a hard exercise but good.

    In the Philippines ancient principles seem to be forgotten easily. Even 10 years is a long time for most – ay ang tagal na niyan. And thinking of even 6 years into the future, forget about seven generations, is something only few leaders are able to do. So little continuity. So little foresight.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      @i7sharp: most Western Constitutions are rooted in Christian culture and its secular descendant, humanism, that attempted to reconcile the revival of Graeco-Roman traditions that was called the Renaissance with Christian values. Thus the idea of human rights.

    • Joe America says:

      Yes, wisdom is found in a few words, confusion is often found in a lot of them, for they start running into one another. Personally, I find looking into the future great fun. One must run endless assumptions and hypotheticals and alternatives and apply some odds to them. Filipinos seem to find their fun in the emotions of being angry ex post facto.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Yep, there is something on that in the Nacionalista thread, I wrote that Marcos was a great hope for many and people were very disappointed, throwing out Erap brought on Gloria.

        From the frying pan into the fire to Karls frogmatic jologs frog slowly cooked in water and my dogmatic jeprox dog in hot water up to the wise walastik helix of Manong Sonny to escape the vicious cycle of oscillations back and forth. Synthesizing practical philosophy.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      In the Philippines, even the language shows lack of continuity and cultural memory.

      There is a discussion between sonny, karl garcia and me about this.

      Sonny is most probably walastik.

      I definitely was a little jeproks.

      Hopefully Karl is not jologs.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        From Tsunetomo Yamamoto’s Hagakure, Book of the Samurai – – one of my favorite books as a former martial artist:

        It is said that what is called “the spirit of an age” is something to which one cannot return. That this spirit gradually dissipates is due to the world’s coming to an end. For this reason, although one would like to change today’s world back to the spirit of one hundred years or more ago, it cannot be done. Thus it is important to make the best out of every generation.

        Also quoted in the movie Ghost Dog starring Forrest Whittaker.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          The relevant scene from the movie just after that quote:

        • sonny says:

          Even Heraclitus of Ephesus (504 BC) knew this:

          “… you cannot step twice into the same stream.”

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            The video shows a similar communication between generations within a similarly troubled people – the Afro-Americans. Same pride, same crab mentality, same hidden complexes.

            Many Filipinos in the US like to look down upon blacks. Reminds me of an old Russian empire saying regarding the Armenians an old NYC Armenian told me.

            An Armenian father tells his son, let us pray for the Jews. Why father? Because without the Jews the Russians and everybody else would look down on us.

      • karl garcia says:

        I like dilis tuyo and itlog.. di yo log…….no money for a trip to belgium but not poor.

      • sonny says:

        @ PiE & Karl So happy for both of you – lots of youth and panache left for you. For me, I hear the waterfalls getting louder. Just praying the other side will be on the right side. I got a generous sister who “loaned” the walastik of travel and then some. The rest is thanksgiving. 🙂 for this war baby.

        • sonny says:

          And of course, there’s the wife who thinks the lambs and lions can live together. 🙂

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Or lambs turn into lions. Duterte is a Christian politician who acts like a harsh Muslim clan leader AND a consensus-based Lumad datu within Davao. A leader who is to unite the Philippines must be able to speak to all groups and listen and understand all groups.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Thanks. Not much “youth” to go for me, 50 coming soon. But a German colleague from the customer site told me don’t worry. From 50-60 you have to be serious. Everything before that you can excuse with inexperience, everything after with coming senility…

          Some feminists joke that men go straight from adolescence to mid-life crisis without ever becoming adults, but forgot that there are men between 50-60. And some wise men in their 70s and after, but this is just a disclaimer so that sonny and Joe do not get mad.

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Jokes aside, the helix which karl garcia remembered is a proof of sonny’s wisdom. My whole life has been a helix, even in the years where my father thought I was in vicious cycles. The third dimension is very important.

            • sonny says:

              Careful that I not be maudlin, PiE: semper ad astra per aspera (always to the stars even in hard times) 🙂 I surmise Tatay thinks that of you.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                I know he does – he wrote to me once that in his eyes I am a fighter like we all are. In his spontaneous reactions he is typical for his generation – 1934 – the generation which much ambitions for their country and for their children, somewhat harsh in discipline but short on praise at times, the generation that saw with their own eyes a more discipline race slap us, humiliate us and sometimes even behead us – the Japanese. These things shape you.

                Like the Yugoslavian generation that saw the Germans do the same to them, the generation of Marshall Tito, and strove to become tough and patriotic as a reaction. My father knows some people from that clique, some former Yugo officers know my father.

          • sonny says:

            Don’t tempt Joe, PiE. He is as old to you as you are to Karl. Under no circumstances should you engage him in any form of basketball !

            As for me, point me to the best spot to view my beloved Manila sunset.

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              OK, thanks. 🙂

              That explains his energy in what he does here.

              Basketball I am not good, my brother and sister play well though.

          • sonny says:

            @ Karl
            Sorry couldn’t go to Oprah’s show when she was giving out cars. Would’ve hocked the car to buy you ticket to Pacman’s showdown with Mayweather at Vegas.

            Would you believe Mike Tyson and Muhammad Ali put their money on Pacquiao? Come May 2, it’s the fighter vs the boxer.

            • sonny says:

              During my time, it was Flash Elorde vs Harold Gomes (US/Puerto Rico). Police and Firemen(?) were deployed at Araneta Coliseum.


              • karl garcia says:

                Delayed telecast na lang and no internet so no spoilers. Taga Cubao ka dati? Aside from the coliseum what was in there, no Ali Mall yet,No Rustan’s, Me C.O.D na ba nung sixties?

              • sonny says:

                Army brat kaya yes to Cubao hangang Camp Murphy. COD yes, Ali Mall no,Rustan no. All store fronts in front of Stella Maris – No; that was the whole front of Stella Maris. Opposite Stella across Aurora Blvd: Ma Mon Luk, Hong Ning Panciteria, Chocolate House, Kobe Chicken; Mercury = Commander Drug; Araneta Coliseum surrounding shared by carabaos grazing; Farmer’s Market occupied by A & W Resto & drive-in fronting Highway 54 (EDSA)

                This is too much nostalgia. I’m not complaining! 🙂

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Ali Mall was built end of the 1970s, Rustans as far as I remember earlier.

                Early 1970s SM had no malls yet, was called ShoeMart and really sold shoes.

                They had one store on Aurora Boulevard, don’t remember exactly where though.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                SM aurora was near BPI, I guess or near Coronet or Queen’s
                lahat wala na except BPI

              • sonny says:

                My mom was the principal of Roosevelt High School, first located at NE corner of Highway 54 and Aurora Blvd; then moved to the site of the Coronet theater. Then she left to be guidance counselor at Philippine Normal School/College, her alma mater.

              • sonny says:

                Ali Mall was was completed in 1976 to commemorate “the thrilla in Manila” the heavyweight championship bout between Muhammad Ali & Joe Frazier. It was the first shopping mall in the Philippines.

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  1. […] of the BBL, but urging us to keep a closer eye on the mosques in the Philippines. The last article (“Bangsamoro Basic Law – managing risks”) on the BBL, by Ireneo, warned us of the possible risks, especially meddling from outside Salafi […]

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