Open Discussion: “Our Philippines”

povertyLet me drop this blog off as the starting point to an open discussion forum for those wishing to partake of their usual dose of Society wit and wisdom from now through the first two weeks of May. I’ll be traveling with my family and don’t expect to stop by. Now, you can pick any topic at all, and there is a lot going on. We have:

  • China
  • The Binays
  • The Supreme Court
  • 2016 election and candidates
  • Religious faith and the lack thereof
  • The United States
  • Education
  • The Tabloid Press and journalism
  • The economy
  • Technology
  • Government services
  • Culture
  • Environment and climate change
  • Military and police
  • Corruption
  • Federalism

I suppose the one topic that intrigues me most is the social/cultural dynamic that prevents the Philippines from rising to her rightful place as a confident, unified, free, democratic leader in Asia. We see signs of leadership in the ITLOS finding and global recognition of the financial stability and promise of the Philippine economy.

The sad irony is that, as the Philippines rises to its highest standing in history, its President falls to his lowest popularity ever. What’s with that?

We look within and see argument and corruption surrounding us as Filipinos work diligently to undermine their own well-being. We see:

  • Rebels of no persuasive ideology killing and extorting to impose their view.
  • Muslims and Christians whose faith has no room for welcoming those of different belief. And so they attack.
  • Crabs everywhere, to the left and right, thriving in the outlying poor areas where superstition and what people say supplant education and knowledge in their thinking. They will put the Philippines into the hands of a crook and then complain about poor government.
  • Hundreds of institutions (clans, tribes, families,churches, provinces, cities, oligarchs, businesses, advocacy groups) whose leadership is convinced that only they know what is best for Filipinos.
  • The corrosive influence of a tabloid press stunningly weak on information and insight.
  • Propaganda artists undermining good thinking and deeds. Most are attorneys, grown-ups, confirmed smart people who seem not to care about the well-being of the nation. They advocate on behalf of crooks.
  • The inability of even the smartest people to separate issue from personality. The use of the insult to wage debate.

We have discussed the divisions, the tribal history of the Philippines, educational shortfalls, and Marcos undercutting trust and promoting corrupt ways.

We have not discussed parenting and the family. It seems to me that most of the dysfunctionality gets passed from generation to generation within the family:

  • Education is left to the schools; there are no books in the home.
  • Superstition and what “they” say determines everything from faith to politics to medical cures.
  • The schools are autocratic and so are families. Nurturing is not in the Parenting Playbook.
  • Subsistence becomes the political ideology, and envy the view toward people who get ahead.

These are things I see, and I frankly don’t know what to do about them.

Innocent ignorance seems to run deep in the family, and I say that trying not to be some kind of intellectual imperialist, but to set it on the table. If I am wrong, you can write to that point. Even knowledge is shunned, as in the shunning and ridicule of teachings that psychologists can do or therapy that psychologists can provide. It’s like there is a commitment to darkness, to limitation, to ignorance. Aspiration and ambition are swear words. Envy is a virtue, and its brother, vengeance.

  • Is that accurate?
    • If so, should something be done about it?
      • If so, what?

That said, the tablet is hereby declared erased.

Feel free to fill it up.



1,012 Responses to “Open Discussion: “Our Philippines””
  1. Have a great vacation, Joe!

  2. karl garcia says:

    Tubular rooster.

    Disappearing trees,disappearing fish.Disappearing flora and fauna.

    Solution for trees: replanting,reforestation,having a national land use policy, urban planning,etc.

    Disappearing fish Solution: maritime domain awareness,coast guard modernization,pnp maritime modernization,department if agriculture modernization. AFMA. agricultre and fisheries modernization act.

    As all laws need financing,enforcement and implementation

    Procurement problems.

    Overpricing,fake bidding, colusion,fake qualifications of bidder,slicing into several parts of projects.
    Solutions. Review procurement laws.

    Biggest allocation from budget yet still wanting of support.
    K12 implementation problems.
    TESDA future, CHED curriculum and teacher problems

    Military needs modernization.
    Country needs to improve laws on reservists,drafting and training.
    Police should be denationalized and serve communities,military stuff removed

    Repeal obsolete laws,discourage TROs,justice for all…

    • josephivo says:

      And eliminate impunity. The Philippines ranks lowest on the list of 51 nations evaluated.

      • karl garcia says:

        Worse than Columbia and Mexico???? i perceive them to be worst in drugs and other crimes and i thought we have a better justice system.—study

        • josephivo says:

          Just a few thoughts:

          I think that the Philippines created more “opportunities”. E.g. How many judges ruled on annulments in exchange for money? How many are in jail for this? Nowhere else divorce is illegal. Has any of the bloggers given a traffic officer some money? And there are traffic officers at every corner. How many are in jail? Did any of you ever see a jeepney with illegal worn-out tires? How many owners are in jail? The amount of small cases and the lack of consequence creates a culture of acceptance.

          Another issue could be the slow speed of the legal system and the heavy bias for procedural issues and the ease to promote the case to a higher level.

          Cheating the occupier, the Spanish or Americans was a virtue and most Filipinos do not realize yet that cheating your countrymen is a vice. So as cheating is still the accepted, why to punish an accepted practice?

          • karl garcia says:

            So true,no divorce laws leads to fake psychiatric reports which leads to the leading excuse for annulment: incapacity(?). bribery from home,the streets,to anywhere. Acceptance? looking the other way? That must change. How? education? values seminars? cultural seminars?

            • nagimasen says:

              I spent around 70k for the voiding of my marriage. no hunky-punky. the process was over after 1 year. may lawyer was lucky. he only prepared the pleadings. no witness required.

          • Self discipline, and family values geared towards community welfare, consideration for others starting with family, community. Sadly, these are not given priority nowadays, replaced by social media gadgets and search for self satisfaction.

            In my younger days, we have been reminded by our Pastor to be honest and responsible, to keep your trash temporarily in your bag when receptacles are nowhere to be seen, to carry trash bags when in big gatherings, say at Luneta, and to follow traffic rules and other laws anywhere, anytime. Obedience to what is morally right is better than sacrifice.

            The government must strictly implement existing laws, impose discipline and punish the abusers, much like what was done in Marikina City, then spread it all over the country like in Singapore.

    • ————-
      Military needs modernization.
      Country needs to improve laws on reservists,drafting and training.
      Police should be denationalized and serve communities,military stuff removed

      Hey, karl, I’ll take this one. Thanks for the links on the other thread, by the way.

      Modernization I agree with, but at the top of the list should be military culture and police culture–too many police officers there think they are military. Graduates from PMA become managers of PNP, when the best model should be NBI managing PNP, to solidify their Law Enforcement role.

      Also, there was too much top down approach in both police and military, I noticed. The enlisted rank has a culture of bowing down to its officers, what makes the US military so powerful is the quality of its enlisted rank, the enlisted keeps officers in check. Mission accomplishment is the purview of the officers, troop welfare is the purview of the enlisted, so speaking truth to power should be ingrained. I think the death of so many SAF troops can be attributed to this concept.

      In the American military the buzz word right now is Cyber War. The U.S. invented the Internet, but it took China (and Russia) to weaponize it, now we are playing catch up. China has units upon units of Cyber hackers. Based on that ZTE scandal a few years ago, and god knows what other deals actually went through, part of modernization should mean more Computer Scientists, less IT folks, there.

      The best reservist model, IMHO, is Israel’s, which works because there is an existential threat–the Chinese threat, so far, is too abstract for Filipinos. As for the draft, there should be a system in place to activate citizens, but national service should be the focus. Organize college students there to teach, or get them involved in the legal system or the field of journalism (more on this in the coming ACLU article).

      And lastly 100% agree on local police. In the US there’s the FBI, then US Marshalls, ATF, DEA, they don’t handle day to day policing in communities. For day to day, there are county Sheriffs (for county matters, ie. county prisons & courts, and service of unincorporated areas), then there are local police departments for towns and cities. If civil rights and corruption issues surface, the FBI takes a look, but local departments handle local problems.

      In so doing, communities have more of a say with their local police, ideally. A more diffuse model of policing, smaller organizations closer to the people it serves, will make it more difficult for the police to be used for nefarious means, in case the Philippines gets another dictator–which is still very highly likely. I was told that before the PNP, there was the Philippine Constabulary, and then local police. Why was the police nationalized?

      • karl garcia says:

        I think the police was nationalized because of martial law were the Integrated national police merged with the philippine constabulary.

        Cyber security,we have our share of hackers. Some have criminal intent and some are ethical.

        Lastly, looking forward to the ACLU article.

        • Part I–My personal take and Part III–How to create an ACLU there, these are pretty much done (which I hope will be the focus for the incoming dialogue to follow). Part II–The conditions that contribute to the impotence of the legal profession there, I’m still trying to wrap my mind around–an honest definition and description of the problem.

          • What contribute to the impotence of the legal profession in PI?


            • edgar lores says:


              Link doesn’t work?

            • I checked it out Juana, I looks like a high school kid’s report. But this is the stuff I’m looking for, just more in-depth. Although I too am a big fan of Sir Thomas More:

              • From the mouth of babes. I believe them more than adults as they have yet to lose their humanity. 🙂 That is as honest you can get it. Have you heard of omertà in the Philippines?

              • Juana Pilipinas says:

                Journalism is the most dangerous job in the Philippines. Make a lot of noise and you are bound to displease someone who can make you disappear, literally. And we wonder why the press are so wishy-washy. My take is, they are saving their own skin.

              • Juana, it wasn’t so much that it resembles a high school paper, but more on its length. But you are correct an honest write-up is lacking.

                I found an article written by a young Atty. working for Court of Appeals there and basically the gist of her article was that her parents were both lawyers, which meant that she had to become one, so after majoring in Political Science, she continued on to one of the best law schools in the Philippines, only to party and “do gimmicks” (what does that expression mean?!!!). So after she finishes law school, because she was too busy partying, she fails the bar exams. Disappointed, she prays to God, studies more, and passes the bar the year after.

                And then there’s a blog entry of another young female lawyer who loves her work because she gets to “dine with paupers and sup with kings” and she gets to eat in fine restaurants because thats where clients prefer to confer. And she loves the prestige.

                So the whole issue of the privileged taking up law, contributes to the broader problem. In the US there are law students from wealthy backgrounds, and they usually end up in big private law firms. But because there are so many law schools here and the variety of lawyers from all socio-economic backgrounds, the field of law is democratized. I get the feeling that those two examples of lawyers above are emblematic of most lawyers there–no depth of character.

                No depth of character usually equals people who will easily fold under pressure. Or if given power they will abuse it. So to connect it to the concept of omerta, I can understand certain towns wanting nothing to do with gov’t (this was the main problem in Afghanistan and Iraq to a lesser degree), but I think the omerta you’re speaking of is part of the gov’t/private cronyism system there, and there should be a concerted effort to dismantle that.

                But if your journalists and lawyers lack the moral courage to actually fight the good fight, and are instead just doing “gimmicks” (I noticed you guys have made American expressions your own, I never heard this expression where I worked there, I’m baffled having read it).

                So the question is how to inoculate and give them moral courage. I have 3 ideas so far I still need to distill for the coming article. I’ll save that for the article. If you guys can think of any other ideas to add, please do, I want this to be the readership’s article, because at the end of said article will be a call for action.

            • National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL) – group of Filipino human rights lawyers defending Mary Jane Veloso in Indonesia.


              • Thanks, Juana, will look further into this group, but I’m curious how they would interact with your diplomats. I know as Americans only State Dept or Justice Dept can take the lead, I’ve never heard of private American lawyers or even organizations take part in these type of cases.

              • That’s exactly the concern I had in mind. Lawyers represent clients, the diplomats (and their lawyers) will have the Philippines interests in mind, but that interest doesn’t usually translate towards the best interest of the Mr. Veloso.

                In the US it’s similar, national interests vs. that individual’s interest. But because the individual here is held in such high regard, the State Dept (and their lawyers) will have no choice but to give equal weigh to the individual, especially when the press is involved.

                But in Ms. Veloso’s case it looks as though it’s just courtesy so let the Philippines go further with their criminal investigation. I think she’s still going to face the firing squad.

                The moral courage component to this is whether or not the NBI and Dept. of Justice will pursue this criminal syndicate to its highest levels. We already know the people at that level, base on experience. For Ms. Veloso’s impending death to mean something, this investigation has to fruit (not scapegoats) but real juicy, sweet fruits.

              • sorry, * of Ms. Veloso

              • Juana Pilipinas says:


                According to the report below, the Indonesian President listened not only to the Philippines’ President but also to the human rights activists who are against the death penalty in Indonesia. One of them drew a parallel to the plight of Indonesian OFWs whose human rights are being violated in other parts of the world.


                Will Ms. Veloso still face the firing squad? It depends on what will come out of the investigation of her alleged recruiter and if the human rights group succeeds on overturning the death penalty in Indonesia.

              • I noticed Indonesians and Malaysians were treated far worst than Filipinas in the Mid-East. Not really sure why. I think its the Muslim component to their culture, ie. they go there having practiced a lighter form of Islam and they work for Arabs who are a lot more critical–at least Filipino Catholics/Christians are who they are.

                As for the efficacy of human rights groups in all this, I seriously doubt it. Int’l politics at this level is give and take. Human rights groups have to convince the population and with a fundamentalist Muslim movement taking place in Indonesia, I doubt it. But I’m hoping I’m wrong though.

                If the Indonesia Pres. backs down, he’ll have hell to pay from the Muslim fundamentalists who favor 7th Century Arab justice.

              • David Masangkay says:

                @LCpl_X I look forward to your article. It’s hard to imagine how our generation can develop and sustain a next generation with moral courage. As individuals, strengthening family values may be a good start. And then you have to collaborate with like-minded people. We have yet to see a political party whose membership qualifications prioritize depth of character over all other requirements.

        • Lilit Trinidad says:

          The police was nationalized because the local police became beholden to local officials to the point that, in many places, particularly in the provinces, the police became the mayors’ private armies. Of course local officials still have some influence over the police, as when they have security guards arrested for not recognizing them, but now policemen can be assigned to places where they’re not necessarily residents — sometimes as punishment.

          • edgar lores says:

            This is true. I am in favor of a local police set-up. So how do we counter the tendency to subvert the police force?

            One suggestion I can think of is to make the local police chief accountable to the town citizens by making the position an elective office. Then the police chief would be beholden to the people and not to the mayor. Term limits would have to be set.

            But how do we professionalize the rank-and-file who must be locals also? Training (at a police academy), adequate pay, tenure and a hierarchical grade system for promotions are obvious answers. Are there more?

            • The only problematic thing in this fine plan is that the local elections are mostly controlled by the local politicians and thus making the police chief elective is essentially the same as making the mayor assign the local police chief. I hope someone can suggest a solution to this because a lot of local politics is like this so a template on solving this problem can be applied to a whole host of similar problems.

              • edgar lores says:

                The argument is valid but is not insuperable. The following steps may be considered:

                o Synchronized elections (if the incumbent mayor is up for re-election he may not be able to use his office to back his choice of police chief)
                o Separate funding for police (to ensure independence)
                o Separate lines of authority (police should report to provincial fiscal?)
                o Police candidates should not be affiliated with a political party.
                o Prohibition of affinity by blood or marriage for mayoral and police candidates
                o Asynchronous terms of office?

          • Thanks, Lilit.

            I am in favor of localizing police, but with the premise of working local governments. And if cities and towns are still governed through the strong-man system or rich families, then localizing will be all for naught.

            So maybe local police departments for towns and cities, BUT for those local govts that don’t quite meet the threshold for governance, they’ll have a county or provincial Sheriff’s dept (maybe bring back the Constabulary as name for this, I know there’s no Sheriff equivalent there).

            Here, most Sheriffs are elected. And police Chiefs are appointed by Mayors. I’m not a big fan of politicizing Public Safety and Law Enforcement, so maybe elect the provincial or regional Prosecutors, as means for citizens to have a say in their own public safety.

            Ideally the district Prosecutor would set the tone on how law enforcement is to be prosecuted, but he won’t have control of the police. The prosecutor will check the police and the police will check the mayor and prosecutor, ideally achieve a balance of power.

            The Police Chief and Sheriff will have to be independent, and not beholden to the Mayor. The NBI, with a now lesser PNP force, will handle cases that need national attention, ie. civil rights, crimes that span the country & govt corruption.

            There should be a national standard for training, but each Police or Sheriffs department should develop their own police academies and meet the minimum of standards set at the national level–police/sheriffs department would then exceed standards, this will be one of the means of competition.

            Officers don’t need to be locals, but there should be a type of market that encourages individual departments to retain and hire the best.

            If there’s a good cop in Zamboanga, he should be able to lateral, having met all national standards and training, to a department of his choosing. Thus incentivizing quality of training and salary/benefits which will be handled at the local level.

            To counter the subversion of police force by national or local govts, as already indicated above, do this by culture. Here both military and police swear an oath to defend the Constitution (which protects the People) above all else.

            edgar, Professionalizing a military and police force has to begin with that concept, that they are not beholden to individuals and groups, but by a bigger concept. The actual implementation and forming of that tradition will take awhile, but it starts with that.

            • edgar lores says:


              Excellent ideas on the police.

              There are district prosecutors but I have never heard much of their role in law enforcement. Pardon my ignorance. I have been lucky I guess.

            • Lilit Trinidad says:

              If I remember correctly, the PNP was created as a way of professionalizing the force. Used to be, richer LGUs had a bigger police force because the pay was better, while few people wanted to be a policeman in poorer towns where the pay was less, specially if they also have to contend with armed groups like the NPA. So the PNP standardized salaries, equipment and personnel.

              And I don’t know if making the local heads an elective position would keep them from getting subverted. Remember, even the COA is thinking of doing away with LGUs’ resident auditors so they don’t eventually become part of the circle of corruption.

              I agree, though, that military stuff is best left to the real military.

              • That’s a good point, Lilit.

                What I’m doing is just transposing the American system there, without any sort of personal experience with the criminal justice system, ie. the actual arrest process, to jails to courts to prisons. So what I’m positing is just an organizational matrix, it may or may not work there.

                I did witness a few times, how criminals and violent disagreements at the barangay level was handled.

                Drunken fights, in an effort to quell any further incidents, the parties involved go in front of the barangay officials, and basically get the ‘hey, we all have to live on top of one another, so knock it off’ speech, done sternly, with a guy with very callused knuckles standing near by. No one goes to jail, it gets nipped in the bud, but more importantly it’s face to face, people interacting with one another, there’s no arrest there’s no outsiders brought in.

                And if the culprit is from another town, like this one burglary incident, where they caught two assailants. They got beaten up sure. But what transpired after was really inspiring, barangay officials talked to the two young men, and later found out that they were brothers. They took them to their town, investigated, talked to the family, and decided to let them go with a warning, because of the economic condition of the burglars’ family. A great example of mercy.

                There’s a strength at the barangay level that’s although dependent on personalities, seem to be uniform for the most part everywhere in the Philippines–from what I saw. And I hope you guys keep this whole personalized approach to crime and criminals, and I hope you guys don’t import our prison system, which has commodified prisoners and in so doing have dehumanized the whole criminal justice system.

      • DelPi says:

        Why the police was nationalized is like asking why the boys scout property was sold and the answer is obvious.

        Hey LCpl, I am a CPO (ret) and served with the Philippines Constabulary (PC) for three years and now live in the Philippines. You have genuine concerns and so am I.

        PC during my days is a respectable and feared military organaization. PNP currently is despised. It lacks strong military leaderhsip especially discipline as demonstrated with so many PNP pers involved in illegal activities. That said, I fully agree with you that PNP should be de-nationalized and bring it back to the military umbrella.

        It is funny you cited reservist in Israel, funny because in the Philippines, and I think due to lack of fortitude and outlook in military significance to a nation, the Senate discontinued the ROTC simply according to a retired military that I talked is because a parent complained. How sad the military readiness is highly complromised.

        You see, as I read along with so many views and concerns I experienced terrible anxiety over the future of this country.

        • Sorry, DelPi, I overlooked your post.

          Although I’m for de-nationalizing the PNP, I’m not for militarizing it or placing it under the AFP–mainly because the military is suppose to defend while the police is suppose to enforce laws. In the US we ensure the separation of these two powers by

          But my question to you having been where the rubber meets the road, is it feasible for the police to be de-nationalized, but instead of placing it under the AFP, keep it de-nationalized but closely aligned with the NBI.

          The culture I noticed among PNP officers was one trying to emulate the military and all things military, instead of carving their own identity as police officers–honing their policing and investigative skills, instead of playing SWAT all day long. Here in the US police officers–feds, state, county, local–are considerably above the military. And the two professions are seldom in contact.

  3. inquirercet says:

    have a safe trip joe.

    is anyone interested in electoral reforms?

    1. Publicly Funded Elections
    1.1 There should be no private contributions allowed.
    1.2 Funding should be dictated by COMELEC for every electoral position. example: President – 80M, Senator – 40M, Congressman – 0.5% of your area’s annual IRA, and so on…
    1.3 Free limited (400 minutes?) airtime on public radio and TV.

    2. Political Party Accreditation
    2.1 Political parties fielding national candidates should have as members at least 2% of the electorate in every region (is per province better?). for those fielding local candidates only 2% membership for the area covered.
    2.2 Parties should have a constitution and by-laws that will setup a primary system for choosing it’s candidates.
    2.3 Primaries will/must be monitored by the COMELEC.
    2.4 I have no idea how to handle independent candidates.

    3. Campaign
    3.1 All presidential candidates must attend atleast three COMELEC sanctioned national televised debates.
    3.2 A similar system for local townhall debates.

    4. Elections
    4.1 Maintain the current multiple party system, but implement run-off elections where the winner must garner 50.1% of the vote.

    i’m out of ideas for now…

    • karl garcia says:

      If runoff elections need charter change, then make it easier to amend constitution.

      • edgar lores says:

        Excellent ideas all.

        The Australia electoral system contains most of the features enumerated above.

        1. Political parties are publicly funded. Important: this means election expenses do not have to be “recovered” which means no or less corruption
        1.1. Private contributions are allowed but capped.
        1.2. Funding is remitted post-election based on the number of seats won. I suppose the first election would be based on equal fund apportionment or the number of candidates fielded.
        1.3. I am not sure if political advertising is free. I don’t think it is.

        2. Political party registration and accreditation is strong.
        2.1. It is based on a minimum party membership of at least 500 registered voters.
        2.2. Yes, constitution, by-laws and platforms are required.
        2.3. Not too sure if primaries are monitored by the electoral commission, but candidates must meet certain requirements such as no serious police record.
        2.4. Independent candidates must meet certain eligibility requirements (such as citizenship, age, registered voter, qualified to be elected under the constitutional and laws, and must consent to serve if elected) and simply need to register their interest with the electoral commission.

        3. Campaign
        3.1 and 3.2. Excellent idea on debates.

        4. Elections.
        4.1. At the state level in Australia’s federal system, there are many political parties such as the Shooters and Fishers Party, the Pirate Party and the Sex Party.
        4.2. Australia uses a preferential voting system which does NOT require run-off elections which can be expensive. This is defined as “a system of voting whereby the voter indicates his order of preference for each of the candidates listed on the ballot for a specified office so that if no candidate receives a majority of first preferences the first and second preferences and if necessary third and other preferences may be counted together until one candidate obtains a majority.” It “requires the winning candidate to secure either an absolute majority (50%+1) of the primary vote or an absolute majority after the distribution of preferences.”
        4.3. Example: Assume there are 3 candidates and the vote distribution for Candidates A, B and C is 35%, 40% and 25% respectively. Since Candidate C has no chance of winning, his second preference votes are counted and distributed to Candidates A and B. Candidate A wins if the majority of voters who voted for Candidate C expressed Candidate A as their second preference, allowing Candidate A to reach more than 51% of the total votes cast.

        Voting is mandatory in Australia. It it not only a right but a duty.

        Despite the complexity of the preferential voting system, elections are not automated. And results, both state and federal, are normally known before midnight on election day. However, there have been recent closely fought state elections where the results were not known after more than a week.

    • chit navarro says:


      Basic things first. Place “honorable, incorruptible and wizened men & women in Comelec.”

      Honorable is one who is incorruptible; one who does not sell his soul for a couple of thousands of pesos.

      Incorruptible is one who does not sell his soul, his life, his signature, his family for anything in exchange – be it money, position, house, car, etc.

      Wizened are matured men and women borne out of experience in the real world; wizened souls who think of their future and that of the future generations……

      Let’s have a COMELEC with this type of commissioners and we will have a government for the people, of the people and by the people.


      • hackguhaseo says:

        Good in theory, but how are you supposed to determine if anyone fits those traits? Personally, I think no one is completely “honorable, incorruptible and wizened” but I could be wrong…. In fact, I’d love to be wrong on this one…

      • Seems like you’re asking for the moon, but I agree with hackguhaseo.
        Where can you find incorruptible men and women? Children cheat during their exams. If you’ll look for one in the lower classes, most of them will have self-betterment as the first agenda once they become employed, and who knows how long they can resist the crooked path’s temptation if they ever become a public official.

        • edgar lores says:

          As a general rule, hackguhaseo is entirely correct. But it is a matter of degree, isn’t it? In other countries, corruption is not as rampant… and the asking of the moon is not entirely out of reach.

          Our tolerance — and even acceptance — of corruption is a contributing factor why it is so endemic in our country.

          • How long are you willing to wait for those wizened men and women? Or are your ideas only thought experiments? Do you have a realistic plan that can be really executed so that wizened men and women can be put in COMELEC?

            • edgar lores says:

              Thank you.

              1. As I read your original post, I was struck by its air of hopelessness. It’s that air of negativity, of defeatism, that I was reacting to.

              2. My point was that this defeatism encourages corruption.

              3. I am as impatient as anyone for incorruptible men and women to hold office. There are already some. Heidi Mendoza, for one; Conchita Carpio-Morales for another. So there is reason to hope.

              4. Do I have a realistic plan? Yes, I do, and that is start with myself. Start by not being corrupt. And start by not allowing defeatism to burrow its way into my heart. And if I do that and do not act corruptly then I influence all whom I come into contact with… and so on until a tipping point is reached.

              4.1. As I said, corruption is not that rampant in other countries. So, yes, it is entirely possible to ask for the moon.

              5. If one thinks about it, thought experiments are the bases of science. They are called hypotheses.

              5.1. Mathematics, that purest example of abstract thoughts, relies on thought experiments. Mathematical formulas, in their highest conceptions, are thought experiments. While the formulas make use of symbols, the symbols do not represent concrete objects in the real world.

              5.2. Einstein’s thought experiments resulted in the Theory of Relativity, and the theory has been the trigger for the development of the TV, CD players, the modern computer, GPS devices and all consequent gadgets.

              • DominiquePahina says:

                I see… It’s nice that you do not allow defeatism to burrow in your heart.

      • Nice thoughts.
        Now we need to operationalize this.

    • hackguhaseo says:

      Ooooh! I like this! I’ve actually wanted to discuss this with people for a while but no one seemed interested (big surprise)… Let’s get this on the list!

  4. pussyfooter says:

    Oh, but you will be sorely missed in the mist of flying brickbats Joe! (Which sounds like a sequel to “House of Flying Daggers” don’t you think?)

    “We have not discussed parenting and the family. It seems to me that most of the dysfunctionality gets passed from generation to generation within the family”

    Ha ha, as Filipinos say, Natumbok mo.

    The family is the true, perhaps the only real, institution in Filipino society, I daresay. You’ll notice that virtually all Philippine workplaces (run by Filipinos anyway–officially or otherwise) represent themselves as such–functional or dysfunctional as the case may be. And your observations are, in this sense, and imvho, correct: Majority of families don’t read, don’t think, don’t analyze, don’t communicate, don’t problem-solve; do (dys)function strictly hierarchically, mindlessly, blindly, do gun along on emotions and the occasional bout of melodrama, do hide or evade or gloss over internal problems, do consider education–like crime–as a mere means to the all-encompassing end of Wealth and Status.

    How exactly to reform the Philippine family, and thus the whole culture? Well, don’t ask me, I’m just the resident sourpuss(yfooter). But just to put this out there, as perhaps a not very realistic but still honest two centavos:

    With apologies to Master Shakespeare (recently birthdayed), the first order of business would be to kill all the priests. Okay let me amend that because there are admittedly a few decent ones remaining (purely a coincidence, no doubt): Defrock the unworthy, which should leave us with about two dozen scientists and other useful thinkers.

    Second order of business: Release the floodgates (oh we wish) to natural and artificial conception, the devices, methods, and drugs therefor, and education on and access to all of it for anyone from any socioeconomic class or background. You can see why we’d need to kill, I mean, defrock all the priests first.

    I’d third-place the reform of public school education while we’re on the topic of impossible dreams. Increase compensation. Mercilessly remove idiots, especially bureaucratic ones, on all levels. Heck, require government scholars, at some point after graduation, to help improve education or at least the general intellectual climate of the country, and incentivize other bright bulbs to pitch in.

    At all times, crabs and other breeds of trolls shall be shot on sight. Useless political creatures, such as the nanays that all but drape themselves over parish priests, shall be struck indefinitely dumb til they render themselves less obnoxious, kinda like Zechariah when he didn’t believe his wife could give birth to John the Baptist.

    All the foregoing undoubtedly suicidally unpopular, not to mention impracticable, and mostly silly-joke ideas (because hey, don’t Filipinos love to hide real but socially unacceptable sentiment behind “jokes”?). But hey, maybe rosier-tinted glasses can make something out of all of this.

    • pussyfooter says:

      I should add: grossly undernuanced and probably offensively overgeneralized ideas, but then one must stop and do their day job once in a while to keep body and soul together.

    • josephivo says:

      Paciencia, it took 25 years to vote on the RH bill, it will take another 25 years to get it trough the legal system and 25 years more to get it implemented.

      P.S. I just heard today that the 15 year old daughter of the gardener I talked about a week ago in another blog, she is pregnant and lives in with the parents of her 22 year old boyfriend. Her mother will be lola at 32 and most likely a proud lola sa tuhod at 47.

      • To raise all this children borne by still children mothers to be productive citizens is a tough task to do considering the poverty and environment they are in. Although there is another school of thought emerging – Singapore, China and Japan are experiencing an aged population, too few young generations due to their one-child policy.

    • edgar lores says:

      I hereby nominate this post for the Most Radical Proposals Award.

    • cha says:

      “All happy families are alike, each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” (Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina)

      Put another way, to eat an elephant, one has to cut it down into little pieces. Parenting issues and problems among those mired in poverty are different from those who are on the way up the socio-economic ladder, and especially more so from those who belong to the country’s economic and political elite. The social issues that result from an OFW father or mother whose children grow up in their absence are different from those resulting from the father and mother whose presence in their children’s lives are a constant example of how to get ahead in life by lying, cheating, or stealing off other people’s hard work.

      Those who do realize the role of the family in addressing many of the social issues that confront us have wisely chosen to focus on specific clusters of problems at a time. A purposive search of the initiatives being undertaken along this lines can bring about not only hope but also possible directions for both individual and collaborative action or advocacy.

      The Philippine government, for instance, runs mandatory Family Development Sessions for those covered by the CCTP (Conditional Cash Transfer Program). These sessions, attended by mothers or heads of households aim “to widen the knowledge and boost the skills of parents and help them to understand and meet the health and education conditions of the program. The FDS is being done by the 4P’s workers through home visits, the use of modules on modular sessions guide for parents, family drug prevention program, parent effectiveness service and empowerment and reaffirmation of paternal abilities.”

      International aid agencies like the UNICEF and Save the Children focus on Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) programs and advocacy. While pushing for more legislation to protect and advance children’s and mother’s rights , the UNICEF has also provided assistance to the Department of Social Welfare in developing and strengthening the ECCD component of the Family Development Sessions.

      Likewise, Save the Children also runs “positive parenting classes as well as health, nutrition and hygiene sessions. As their children start their education journey, we are providing parents with advice, skills and vital links to government services so they are equipped to further support their children. We also train those parents who are able to volunteer so that they can help with the running of playgroups in their community as well as support other parents.”

      There are smaller NGOs that focus on specific communities like Roots of Health in Palawan that work with women and young people. “Roots of Health empowers women and girls to secure their right to health and freedom from violence, and to support and protect the health and well-being of their families.” They run Maternal Health Sessions, a Financial Literacy Program and provide Reproductive Health Services in the communities they are in.

      There is ATD (All Together in Dignity) Fourth World Philippines that works with 4 Manila impoverished communities: a public cemetery, under a bridge at Quirino Avenue, and two neighborhoods in Pandacan located beside a water canal. They run cultural action programs, training/workshops and other fora, all in response to the needs of the different members of the community: children, parents and the youth. These include Street Libraries, a Festival of Learning for young children, and Creative Art workshops for ATD families.

      On the legislative front, Bulacan Representative Sherwin Gatchalian has proposed a bill “to institutionalize a national parenting program to strengthen parent engagement and responsibility in the education of their children. The measure , called the “Nanay Teacher Parenting Program Act” seeks to train parents “to become parent-teachers by exposing them to best-case practices and other information in facilitating and encouraging continuous learning at home.
      The measure shall promote the use of positive disciplinary methods through dialogues highlighting the benefits of wholesome, constructive and encouraging modes of discipline.
      The program shall be applied to all public and private schools in which students from Kindergarten to Grade Twelve are enrolled.”

      There are also several initiatives from the private sector and targetting other sectors or family types, or those whose parenting styles and approaches are less constrained by the realities of day to day existence. But that will have to be another post. The point is that there is already a recognition of the role of the the family, of parents particularly, in addressing the social issues of the day. We can choose to reinvent the wheel or we can find an initiative that speaks to us, and then support and advocate for such.

      • josephivo says:

        A long list of promising initiatives that will make a difference…. but Rome was not build in one day, so we will have to keep supporting them before we will see their full potential.

  5. NHerrera says:


    The strong negative words or expletives heaped on the Judiciary whenever the Condonation Doctrine or the alleged corruption of Justices in the TRO issuance is mentioned is a preview or indication of what the SC Justices will be up against when it comes forth with its decision on the Condonation Doctrine — a more than 9-to-1 condemnation.

    Even the relatively balanced opinion of former CJ Panganiban on Trillanes (“Show proof or apologize” in the Inquirer) did not spare Panganiban in the commentaries.

    • karl garcia says:

      Supreme court decisions,doctrines that seem weird must be listed,inventoried and reviewed by the SC and congress. Aguinaldo Doctrine is just one among many.

    • josephivo says:

      I miss proportionality so much. Condonation for a small offence, yes, condonation for a medium offence that was part of the election campaign ,maybe, condonation for a serious offence, never.

      Many only discuss in (your) black and (my) white,

    • Sadly, these judges have security of tenure, and unless impeached, the corrupt ones will go their merry ways and continue to be judges for sale regardless of public furor through social media.

      • edgar lores says:

        It’s ironic, isn’t it? Security of tenure is supposed to ensure the correct dispensation of justice against the temptations of bribery!

    • Bing Garcia says:

      You are right. This is what Mr Panganiban said earlier: I believe the Court’s prerogatives have two inherent limitations: public opinion and judicial self-restraint.

      I think public opinion will make SC abandon the condonation doctrine.

    • DAgimas says:

      Panganiban is pro-Binay.. didn’t you read the news..he is already organizing for the Binay campaign

  6. NHerrera says:


    I posted this in Raissa’s Blog today:

    PHilStar — ASEAN divided on China island-building
    (April 27, 2015 – 2:38pm)

    In short: nothing more than a statement that agreement is not possible because of non-congruent or identical INTEREST of each ASEAN country — NHerrera

  7. I’d like to comment on the picture above. I suppose it falls under

    “parenting and the family. It seems to me that most of the dysfunctionality gets passed from generation to generation within the family” – JoeAm

    A picture paints a thousand words, says a song.

    We see there a mother of four, sharing what seems to be their breakfast, I assume it’s breakfast as I can see the someone (is that the father or a 5th kid?) still lying on their makeshift bed along a sidewalk.

    How they procreate in that public place is beyond me, I can see in other places families living in a kariton, with all their worldly possession in there plus their children. (I doubt if books can be seen among them.)

    But they manage to bring forth into this world a lot of children, the future of which being uncertain judging from their present conditions.

    The cynic (A person whose outlook is scornfully and habitually negative) will probably say these children will be the future snatchers, hold uppers, bank robbers of even drug users and drug pushers.

    I hope these parents realize that they are continuing the cycle of poverty and mendicancy in being irresponsible parents by having this many children with no visible means of providing them with adequate basic needs, – food, shelter, clothing… unless they are the latest victims of widespread fires that usually happen right before and during the fire prevention month, but why are they not in evacuation centers?

    Why do they persist in staying in the cities when obviously, they are not comfortable here… to beg, to scatter the garbage in various streets?, why can’t the government round them up and provide even a modicum of livelihood in the provinces?

    More time is needed for further analysis on what to do with them for the moment.

    • will respond to karl, Sir N. Herrera and the others when i get back home… time to go, its almost 6:00 pm

    • josephivo says:

      Poverty has many causes. One of them is below average development of the brain and especially at the frontal cortex, the part that makes us think twice. This is mainly due to malnutrition during pregnancy and the first 6 months.

      Therefor this PPP or conditional cash transfer program of the government is so important to reduce the inheritance cycle of poverty.

      • You know, that is so true and I may have one proof of that.

        When we heard that one of our poor cousin is expecting yet another baby, we gave her some formula (in cans) designed to keep both mom and baby in optimum health. The baby turned out well and reasonably intelligent.

        The next baby was not so lucky as she starved herself for no apparent reason, maybe depression, we don’t know. We did not know she was expecting as she kept it a secret, mindful of our cautioning her to limit her kids to a comfortable number they can nurture and provide for. The baby is a little retarded, prone to tantrums and cerebral palsy attacks, another source of her stress and lifetime responsibility.

        She herself was a product of an unhealthy pregnancy on the part of my aunt-in-law not eating properly, a malnourished mother and baby. Somehow, we observe their family, siblings and their respective children who are like feathers being blown by the wind, so to speak… the laid back kind, who prefers gossiping to making their homes tidy and to plant anything and everything in the land so they can be food sufficient.

  8. NHerrera says:


    Flash back to a year ago before the Bondal-Enciso complaint with the Ombudsman that resulted in the Pimentel Blue Ribbon Subcommitte Hearing on the Makati Building Overprice and subsequent charges. If Binay, struck much like St Paul on the road to Damascus, said, “I have rendered my long public service. I will retire from government service. At my age I will devote my remaining time to alleviating the plight of the poor, using whatever modest wealth I have accumulated to devote my time to the poor in my private capacity.”

    That would have resulted in quite a narrative. A narrative to a Saint Binay.

    But that did not happen. Now, with prospects of jail for him, his son and wife, we know how the narrative goes.


    The only option now is for him to seek that Presidency by all means and whatever cost to him (even practically emptying his coffers) and whatever cost to the country. Installed as President thereby, recovery of the emptied coffers is virtually assured as well as eliminating the prospects of jail for him and members of the family. We have a Binay pushed to the wall under the present circumstance. We have Binay transformed from the Saint Binay in the previous narrative scenario.

    • We need to do all we can to prevent Binay or Bongbong or even Estrada from being elected by the masa voters as President. Please share the FB postings of “Thinking Class of the Philippines Community”. Verbal posts seems to be not so attractive to the young and even to the not so young voters out there. They have to have visual aids to help them think…. most of them anyways… I feel so defeated and hopeless trying to engage them (even the senior citizens) in meaningful discussions.

    • Bing Garcia says:

      With the Supreme Court, COA, DOJ and the Ombudsman joining forces, Binay is going to jail.

  9. andrewlim8 says:

    Just dropping off this topic here for future reference for Joe or anyone who wants to write on it.
    Currently, NBC”s lead news anchor Brian Williams is under suspension due to a claim he made before that he was in a chopper that was shot down in Iraq while on coverage. Turns out it was false, and he is now under investigation. NBC has found other instances when he embellished
    events and CNN analysts say this is NBC’s way of forcing him to resign.

    What a waste, for someone who was seen as a worthy successor to Peter Jennings! Anyway, comparing him to Noli de Castro is so funny because while Williams makes false claims to make himself look more credible, Noli is content with doing nothing at all to make himself credible! ha ha ha When he was VP, many considered him to be GMA’s secret weapon because no one would want to oust GMA if it means Noli becomes President!

    Dan Rather also made a telling comment: in today’s news reporting, tweeters and bloggers have become more powerful in telling the news, citing the Nepal quake and the US police racism issues. He says that perhaps the power that news anchors are declining. hmmm…..

    Blog fodder.

  10. NHerrera says:


    (JoeAm, forgive the rather rapid-fire posting, your smorgasbord of topics is stimulating.)

    There is no question that an effective Education is the country’s magic bullet.

    Even when the Constitution mandates priority to Education in the setting of national budget, it is just not enough. A braking of the population surge is important and we dearly hope DOH will not relax in its efforts with the RH Law already passed. The continuous economic growth (though not yet felt by the majority poor) is a must to help in increasing the funds allotted to Education. If philanthropic organization such as the Bill Gates Foundation sees the seriousness with which we are pursuing this activity they may on their own or if asked give generous assistance too.

    • josephivo says:

      If the others improve faster than we do, we still have a problem. We do not live in a static world. How can we overtake them with spending a smaller % of our GDP? We are smarter (?), but that much?

      • karl garcia says:

        Vietnam spends 5.3% of gdp for educ Malaysia and Thailand 4.1%,Singapore 3% We are tied with Indonesia at 2.8 %

        short term overtake Malaysia and Thailand spending, mid term overtake Vietnam.
        That is why payment of public sector debts is important. Bloated bureacracy must be resolved,not by making half of bureacracy contractual that is cosmetic.Maybe computerization of processes may cut man power requirements that is why many hate automation.

        Private sector jobs must be available. Micro entrepreneurship,smes must florish. For that to happen availability of credit and a credit scoring (fico like) must happen,maybe to reduce default on payments.

        After all of that maybe there would be more education spending.

      • The answer I believe is that after a certain point the effect of investments become minimal compared to the peculiarities that a culture enforces on itself.

  11. NHerrera says:


    The ordinary Catholic has the faith; some Bishops and Archbishops do not. (Think Mitsu-Archbishop Arguelles of NTC fame and Archbishop-at-large Bacani, another politician-prince of the church and slapped at the wrist by Vatican for sexual hanky-panky — both deliver nice pro-forma homily or statements, but act differently.)

    • karl garcia says:

      Catholic history is not pleasant at all, from fake priests,to not fake but evil priests,padre damasos,padre salvis and now mitsubishops. The important thing is the good must not only outnumber the bad, but the good must do something about it.

  12. Read this:

    Banfield, Edward (1955). Moral Basis of a Backward Society.

    If you know the culture and history of Italy, you will easily understand the history of the Philippines as well. Both countries are family-oriented, but not civic-minded. Both countries also see the government as hostile, rival families are threats, and friends and immediate families are the only trustworthy ones, and most of all, the Catholic church is their savior.

    Read also this:

    This is where the Roman empire morphed Christianity into their own extension (as Roman Catholic Church) and did continue their political influence to the spheres that have their religion (Latin Europe, Latin America, Philippines). Their influence is so big that people always believe the Church first, regardless if they contradict science, medicine, or the bible; hence calling RCC antichrist.

    Disclaimer: this doesn’t necessarily mean RCC is satanic. This is figurative as this means all Catholic-dominated countries (except France) are poor and chaotic, as in cases of LatAm and PH. In Latin Europe (again except France), they’re bomarded with illegal aliens and economic recession.

    Also read this:

    The absolutism of RCC in Latin Europe caused poverty among all Catholic countries worldwide.

    The only Latin Catholic country to escape from the Catholic cycle of poverty and the Latin culture is France. Hope Italy and the rest, particularly PH will follow France’s example.

    If you understand these factors, you will understand the true state of the Philippines.

  13. jameboy says:

    On religious faith and the lack thereof.
    I have no problem with religion, I have problem with people of religion. They should not be meddling in politics by using and taking advantage of their faithfuls. The Catholic, the Islam, the Iglesia Ni Cristo and all those opportunistic peddlers of spiritual voodoos and witchcraft nonsense should realize that putting their fingers in politics is an indication they themselves don’t hold the Truth that is why they meddle and participate in national gambling (elections). Those assholes were taking advantage of the gullibility of the people. It’s that simple. They are the cold-blooded pirates roaming the spiritual sea taking hostages of innocent souls for their own earthly-avarice.

    MPIY! ✊

    • There has always been a close relationship between religion and power throughout human history, and the only time that pattern was broken was during the War of Independence here between England and its American colonies.

      Thomas Paine, who played the crucial role of “thought leader” (along with Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin), pressed for the separation of state and church, knowing full well the tyranny of religion. Because Paine took the whole notion of atheism/humanism too far, he was largely written off.

      Fast forward to now, and American evangelical organizations have begun opening their own law schools, and inserting their lawyers into government.

      It’s a constant, ancient process. No matter how advance a nation purports to be, religion and power will always attempt to marry. The only way to counter this is education, so far though the closest to a Thomas Paine the Philippines ever produced was still Jose Rizal, and you guys have largely made a caricature of him to fit him to your own Filipino sensibilities.

      Thomas Paine was also made a caricature of for posterity, but at least his three books and countless articles live on, more importantly his ideas. Sadly, Jose Rizal has been relegated to the past and long been made irrelevant.

      The concepts of humanism and atheism (and thus public service), whether you are a person of faith, are still very much relevant and worth fighting for–that should be the role of the Dept. of Education. Respect and even foster faith, but at the same time keep magical thinking from infecting governance–

      know the difference between delusion and faith.

      • edgar lores says:


        Agree with all that has been said except the last bit about education fostering faith.

        Faith in what?

        • “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
          ― Albert Einstein

          I guess faith in one’s own ignorance, which leads to humility. Religion is abused when its peddlers believe they know everything. Faith in and of itself, there’s nothing wrong IMHO, and a healthy dose is necessary, as is skepticism and cynicism.

          “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
          Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”
          – Hamlet

          • edgar lores says:

            Thanks. Perhaps not faith in ignorance but faith in the rationality of man to overcome and faith in a purposive universe (which may be Einstein’s pose of wonder as he says, “God does not play dice with the universe)?

            • That’s better put. But humility is the point–ie., there’s more that we don’t know, compared to what we do know. And the recognition that science itself can become a form of religion. Hence the importance of humility when it comes to knowledge, any knowledge.

              • Juana Pilipinas says:

                For a lot of people, humility does not come in until they accumulate a lot of knowledge and find out that there are a lot of other things and occurrences that defy scientific explanation.

              • I think either by education or through the family, children can be infused with humility, thus inoculating them both from the over-specialization in academia & over-simplification of religion. So in their quest for knowledge both in academic and spiritual they’ll have that humility already intact.

            • josephivo says:

              Still there is a steady shift from Holy Providence to chance events to random events to events with a reasonable explanation to proven events. Evolution as an example, bacterial diseases, quantum mechanics, earthquake proof buildings…. Things we take for granted today were less than that not so long ago. What will the future bring?

              • i7sharp says:

                “What will the future bring?”

                For the latest news, the Drudge Report does a good job.
                Baltimore is burning, for one.

                For perspective, I gather information (look for patterns, etc.)
                and put them here:

                Things don’t look good.

                Will God give Filipinos the chance to make their nation greater than America has ever been?

  14. sonny says:

    Pandora’s trump: HOPE I cling to.

    For a comprehensive catalog for the human agenda consult Greek Mythology and the Bible. (I think not enough believe in them anymore any way.)

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      THE INTERNET BABIES are not yet out-of-the-closet atheists. They know God is ineffective and tulog-sa-pansitan. It is obvious if ever at all they use their observatory faculties that RELIGION IS A FAILURE THAT PROMOTES POVERTY. Because only in POVERTY they lack education. Lack of education makes them sold out to retrogressive religion. .


      The NEXT GENERATION Filipinos will eventually free themselves from the bondage of Religion.

      DOWN WITH RELIGION ! UP WITH EDUCATION ! Ooops! I mean “UP” not University of the Philippines. Go Ateneo! Go la Salle! Go to other schools rathern than U.P. which produced the most glamour crooks in the Philippines!!

  15. nagimasen says:

    I submit the root of the problem is overpopulation . its a given that we are divided, the politicians are corrupt and the elite don’t really care about the poor.

    but if only the people planned their families to have children only when they can afford it, the problem we have today would be more manageable than it is now

    the best example is during rush hour, when everybody is trying to get on the bus or jeepney. the first to get on the bus are those alone or with just one companion. the lesser your number, the faster you get to ride the bus. or even in restaurants during lunch or dinner. the first to be seated are those who require only one table

    in short, its easier to feed a family if you are only 3 or 4, no matter what matrix you will use.

    this situation applies to all our problems. food security, classroom shortage, disasters. a small and stable population would have solved a lot of these problems. do you need to build classrooms every year if you are growing only up to replacement rate? NO. do you need to expand the acreage of farm if there is no growing population to feed? NO

    that’s why china imposes draconian rules regarding children because they know the enormous responsibility of feeding, clothing, educating and enriching and satisfying a billion people. a barrel of oil maybe $50 for now but when the GDP/capita of the Chinese reaches 20k, imagine the resources they need?

    imagine 50 years ago when the Philippines had only 30m population? which is better?

    • You can’t mandate reduction of children, like China did. You’re playing with eugenics at that point, and the laws of unintended consequences.

      The only way to solve over-population is to create the conditions that promote having less kids. It’s not the source of the problem, IMHO, it’s just a symptom–a symptom that adds to the positive loop at hand, yes, but not the root.

      Otherwise, people are just doing what any organism in this world was meant to do, which is to multiply.

      A poverty stricken couple, especially when there’s nothing better to do, will hump like bunnies. Absent of social security nets, having plenty of kids is the only viable option to ensure safety/security at old age.

      Out of 10 children, if 1 makes it, whether through luck (a bar girl marries a financially stable man from the West) or hard work (illicit activities or legal), then their needs are met.

      Gov’t and society have to ensure these needs are met in order to dissuade them from making babies. Look at the average birthrate of Western nations.

      The Catholic church is also complicit here, or at least the values they espouse in these matters. The cops and soldiers I worked with there, had complete confidence of the pull-out method. I was 10 yrs old, when my elementary school taught us the birds and bees and the inefficacy of the pull-out method, we saw videos explaining this at the cellular level.

      Sex education, IMHO, helps when it comes to unintentional conceptions due to bad info, like the above. Which begs the question, who teaches sex education there? Why were those cops and soldiers I met ignorant when it came to understanding how conception worked at the cellular level?

      • nagimasen says:

        I am not advocating mandatory 1 child policy but to educate the people about the responsibility of raising a family.

        in America (I am not Amboy, just an observant Filipino), when life is hard, the people postpone marriage or children.

        whats happening in the Philippines now is that a tambay, who cant even buy his own cigarette, has the chutzpah to marry his equally tambay gf and have kids. im not that pessimistic but a prudent person would not be thinking marriage and family if he cant even finance his own vice?

        ok lets say its human nature to satisfy tawag ng laman..but to have kids without the means to feed them?

        • In that case, I agree with you re education (especially a scientifically based sex education, not the sort that condones crap like the pull out method).

        • The issue of over-population is important, I’m not denying that. I got to visit an orphanage while there, and was surprise at the number of orphans from incest. Many times attributed to being fathers, uncles, brothers, grandfathers being drunk–first cousins, this was normal in the Middle East, so that didn’t bother me much.

          • Ma Ru says:

            over population is a symptom of poverty, lack of education and catholic values wrongly applied i.e Ang diyos na ang bahala.. among others

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      It is difficult to fight overpopulation when University of the Philippines-populated Philippine Media promotes subtly and covertly promotes religion.

      Philippines is a FREE COUNTRY, supposedly, in theiroy, THE FILIPINOS SHOULD HAVE THE RIGHT TO CHOSE HEAVEN and HELL if there is any, if at all, exist !

      DOWN WITH RELIGION! ROMAN CATHOLICISM and CHRISTIANITY is a product of Spanish colonization !!!


      • Two questions,

        How is the Univ. of the Philippines (subtly, covertly) promoting religion?

        And how are you as an atheist better off than Filipinos? And what’s the definition of better here?

        • mercedes santos says:

          That poor woman, in the picture, NEEDS tubal ligation bad !!!!

          • That statement’s void of empathy, and consistent with the rich/poor divide I witnessed there, but say she (and men also) does opt for tubal ligation are there clean, professional places where she can get this operation for FREE?

            Would you yourself opt for tubal ligation, why or why not?

            And here’s a hypothetical, If this operation was mandated by others (the gov’t, other groups) to you, ie. you have to have tubal ligation, for any list of reasons, would you have this operation?

            • mercedes just have a dry sense of humor, LCpl_X. A coping mechanism for a lot of Filipinos frustrated with never ending social issues in our country.

            • mercedes santos says:

              Last time I heard, this is still a democratic(?) country; it’s a CHOICE, no mandates
              required !! ( Does the heckler in me show, Mr. Llores ? You are from the deep north, I am from the liberal south. Why do I have a funny feeling that this corporal is actually Joe ?)

              • edgar lores says:

                Yes, Mercedes, the heckler in you shows strongly and is in fine form.

                The antonym of “liberal” is not “deep.” In a political context, it is “conservative.” But if you are characterizing me and my birthplace as deep, I accept. (And why, may I ask parenthetically, is the south liberal?)

                As a segue to your last question, rhetorical though it may be, let me just say that the corporal and JoeAm are judgmental as all bloggers must be… and straight-shooters as Westerners tend to be. It comes from their cowboy ancestry. I believe we have smoothed out the rough edges of JoeAm and he has acquired a patina of Oriental subtlety and tact, except when he is fulminating against China aggression, Binay corruption, senatorial incompetence, judicial folly … the list is endless as this blog has more than 600 entries.

              • mercedes santos says:

                Mr. Lores I thought we were talking about OZ !!!!!

              • edgar lores says:

                Ahaha! You got me, Mercedes.

                I was momentarily dislocated — geographically speaking. I thought you were referring to my Philippine roots, which is the Ilocos, and your south, which could be Visayas or Mindanao.

                Excellent heckle!

              • mercedes santos says:

                John Bjelke P is/was from the North, right or were you around during his time ???

              • edgar lores says:

                Sir Joh is indeed from the north, but he was before my time. I only moved up here in 2011.

                So by south you mean Sydney or Melbourne. The latter is more cosmopolitan than the former, so I deduce “liberal” is Melbourne… but then my Sherlockian skills seems to have deserted me.

              • mercedes santos says:

                Accomplished hecklers, all come from Melbourne; you should listen to them, sometime. North is really just steamy 🙂

              • edgar lores says:

                Steamy? Ah, your heckling has indeed reached stratospheric heights!

                I surmise your skills have been honed by the comedy festivals held in Melbourne, in particular the mock debates that feature the finest, if scatological, speaker-celebrities Down Under like Paul Mcdermott. Abante!

              • mercedes santos says:

                Yup, abante gyud 🙂

        • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

          By covering every religious tradition and rituals also promotion of incredible prayers.

          Considering my income, I am better off.

    • edgar lores says:


      Using the 5 whys approach, an appropriate question would be: What is the cause of overpopulation?

      • nagimasen says:

        tough to answer but the truth is poverty got worsened when the population is no longer manageable. growing up in late 70s in a province in the north, poverty/hunger was not so much a problem when everybody had lands to till. I don’t even remember evacuating to a school during typhoons. the villagers just go to where the sturdiest house (one was our house). now its a government operation. it only means that people now occupy every nook and cranny that they have to be evacuated to avoid disaster.

      • josephivo says:

        There is a strong correlation worldwide between poverty and fertility. Poor people having many children, more affluent ones less. Some of the possible why’s:

        1- As explained before in this blog, malnutrition hinders the development of the frontal cortex and the restraint system of the brain, more impulsive behavior is the result.
        (Please be careful with this statement. We talk about averages. It tells nothing about individuals, some might be 10 times more thoughtful than we. It is only one element that has to work in combination with other aspects as education, cultural aspects, etc. to form a deadly cocktail. This one attribute can be offset by strengthening other characteristics, e.g. by working harder.)

        2- Many children are perceived as insurance, reducing risks. If one passes away it is easier to absorb. At old age it is easier to ask each of your 10 children 100 peso than to ask your only child 1000 peso.

        3- Sex is still the cheapest form of recreation, especially with no contraception.

        Religion has little to do with it. Compare in the Philippines the number of children of better off couples and dead poor couples, both are catholic. Catholics and poverty? May be.

        • Better off couples has less children than dead poor couples –

          True, but in middle class better off couples where both spouses are working, problems on who will mind the children is often one reason why they limit children to 2 or just one.

          Dead poor couples has at least the mother staying home to care for the brood.

          In our clan’s example there were 10 siblings, 8 of them females my aunts, one aunt will dump all the young, still out of school kids to a sister at 4:00 am and off to the field she goes, returning only at sundown. The next day, that sister will then play nursemaid while the other goes to their own farm to help her husband. An aunt of mine is wiser, she dumps her kid, even the one still nursing, at 3:00 am and the other mother, her sister, who has no other choice, will nurse her niece/nephew along with her own baby. In those days breast feeding is the norm, no bottle feeding at all. After a while, all the sisters have a dozen each children, but most of them were raised responsibly, and are all professionals and productive citizens, although some of them are migrants to US and Canada where they practice their profession. There are exceptions of course, (hence there are poor cousins and second cousins) but mainly because they lack the drive, focus and determination to rise from where they are, to strive for a better life, and content to ask or expect to be helped and be helped indefinitely.

          • Please bear with my poor editing, lots of grammatical error in my posts, no grammar police and chief editor here.

          • One male cousin (after getting his engineering license, even jokingly talked to their carabao and horses, bye, bye guys, I won’t see you any more. He is now in US practicing his profession. Before that, he took over the task usually done by his father (who was struck by tuberculosis when he was still a young boy, and was thus reduced to just be the adviser and moral guide and escort to his girls when they went to Manila for college studies ), his mother took over the farming and its management until he was old enough to help out.

            • PS, am I boring you guys, by my continuing anecdotes of my family life, going the way of Ireneo Salazar?… Sorry, can’t help it, just to show that in real life, not just theories, one can rise from extreme poverty and helplessness. – the family saga of the Perez clan…

              • edgar lores says:

                Anecdotal evidence does not provide conclusive proof. It does provide acceptable proof in particular instances. So does kamaganak-dotal evidence.

              • I’m a big fan of anecdotes. Statistics not so much. So keep ’em coming, Mary, they humanize the discussion.

          • Juana Pilipinas says:

            Mary, I am very interested in the topic of rural poverty in the Philippines. At last reading, I found out that half of the population there live in the rural area. Fishing and farming are their main livelihood. A third of the general population are poor and most of them live in rural Philippines. For a country that is blessed with natural resources, I wonder why there is so much poverty. Are the poor really just lacking in motivation or do they have unmet needs to be productive?

            • Juana Pilipinas says:

              That also brings out the topic of food security in the Philippines. How can Filipinos be food secure? The IRRI and other farming entities in the Philippines have taught other countries how to farm and these countries have great successes toward food security: Vietnam, Thailand, India to name examples. These countries are now exporters of farm products, including rice. Philippines still import rice and other farm products. How can Philippines be self sufficient?

              Though the purpose of Bill Gates’ visit to Los Banos was not disclosed, I am hoping that he saw the Philippines food insecurity and devising a way to assist in solving the problem.

              I, at some point, want to go back to share what I learned about farming.

              • nagimasen says:

                land is finite. and the country is located along the typhoon belt. right now, our farms are more productive than any southeast Asian country. the problem is there is only so much land to till and the threat that the crop will be destroyed by a typhoon. now even Mindanao is being hit by typhoons.

                its time to be serious with the population. its just ridiculous that some respectable people still argue that we could pack more people into our islands, as if only people matters. don’t we want forest? open areas? wildlife? clean air? there are more trees in the village we live now in California than in the village I grew up with.

                what if there is a failure of crop in those rice exporting countries? you can not just depend on prayers

              • @ Juana Pilipinas

                I myself is asking this question. We can trace poor health and yes, lack of sufficient motivation, to begin with, are reasons why rural poverty still exists. An old woman (our former neighbor before we migrated to Metro Manila) I talked to says that before, they can eke out a living from the fruits of their land, now, pests and typhoons defeat them. Her sons had turned to business and left farming altogether.

                Poor health comes from modern diet which the poor has unfortunately resorted to. Whereas before, fresh fruits, and vegetables from our own backyard plus the fresh fish being peddled by those living in lake shores are the common staples. I can speak for myself, cucumber salad (with a little salt and calamansi juice, together with boiled fish (pinangat) and I am gratified. Sometimes, boiled string beans, freshly harvested from our nearby garden plus pinangat na tawilis, wow… lunch is solved. Boiled malunggay (moringa) with tomatoes.. heaven for me. Those days we are energetic, determined and willing to face challenges that life and circumstances will throw at us.

                Now, they are so into hotdogs, instant noodles (the poor man’s diet nowadays), pork and longanisa which they get from nearby sari sari store on credit as their daily diet, no wonder they are lethargic and less motivated to go out and do something to be food sufficient. After all, they do have a backyard, and we are willing to let them till our tiny portion of land left to us by our grandparents.

                Although they try, but somehow, life has been less rewarding to them. They want instant success, so they surrender the land to wild grass and climbing plants that turn it into a wild forest so we decided to plant mahogany trees instead.

              • Heck what a horrific grammar…

                the opening sentence should be I myself am asking…sorry guys

    • jtdelapaz says:

      Source: National Statistics Office

      A 142 Million Philippine Population by 2045?
      Reference Number:
      Release Date:
      Monday, July 28, 2014

      By the year 2045, the Philippine population is projected to increase to 142 million according to the latest 2010 Census-based population projections. Around 50 million people would be added in a span of 35 years. This increase in numbers would take place even if the average annual growth rate is projected to decline significantly, from 1.73 percent during 2010-2015 to 0.65 percent during 2040-2045. The Philippine population grew by 1.9 percent annually during the decade 2000-2010.

      In 1995, we had a population roughly around 68M. That translates to the population doubling in 50 years. Pretty scary thought considering that now, government services can barely cope with basic needs ( food, shelter, water supply, electricity, garbage disposal, etc.)

  16. jameboy says:

    Population? Why not try Church? 👀

    • sonny says:

      Yes, indeed.

      “God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” ” — Genesis 1:28

      “God never goes back; he always moves forward. Adam and Eve were banished from the garden. God could have redeemed them and sent them back to the garden, but he didn’t, for two reasons: God always wants our future to be bigger than our past, and God always moves forward.” — Matthew Kelly, Catholic preacher

      Rediscover Catholicism, by Matthew Kelly

      “Catholicism is a treasure map: It may be old, but it still leads to treasure. Let’s rediscover it together, and help others to do the same.”

  17. “The sad irony is that, as the Philippines rises to its highest standing in history, its President falls to his lowest popularity ever. What’s with that?” – JoeAm

    We still have over a year of this presidency…. That’s still 365 days of the President trying to complete his promised change in the level of corruption, to improve the economy and to place the country in a higher level among the community of nations.

    To do that, he needs the cooperation of the Filipino citizens, his bosses, as he cannot do them all by his lonesome. That’s the sad irony, with all these negative nitpicking magnified by the mainstream media, his popularity level dives to its lowest level thereby undermining or weakening his authority and effectiveness when for example, in this ASEAN conference, he strives to secure a common stand against China’s bullying tactics (the shooing away of Filipino fishermen from their own territorial waters, the building of permanent structures which they claim are for storm shelters only but more than likely to be used as staging area for military exercises and nuclear bases, not mentioning their rude destruction of our coral reefs and other natural resources) . Who will support a president that is not supported in turn by his own constituents? You negativism advocates and destabilizers … can’t you think for one minute and reflect on what you are doing to our country?

    • There are no flowers in Burgos Park, at Bonifacio Global City… damn

      • Juana Pilipinas says:

        It’s all in the mind, Mary. Close your eyes and go to your happy place. 🙂

      • edgar lores says:

        I do not live on a farm as Juana does. In fact, I live in a backwater suburb.

        Here’s an excerpt from a letter I wrote to a friend recently:

        …I arise after six to take my daily walk.

        I do not live in the best part of town, but there is a park just across the street. It is a relatively huge expanse of green and has some picnic tables, a playground, a basketball court, a volleyball court, an exercise machine platform, and an enclosed dog playground. .A waterway, a rain drainage system, cuts across the park. It’s so beautiful and quiet in the morning when the sun rises, bathing the park in golden light. Did I say quiet? Nah ah. The birds – magpies, cockatoos, ibises, ducks, at times rosellas, and sparrows — are so raucous. It is a sight to behold the flocks of cockatoos along the banks of the waterway, feeding on the bulbous roots of grass, leaving brown patches on the green carpet.

        At that hour, already some four-footed masters are brought to the playground by their two-footed servants… on foot, or in small cars, medium cars and SUVs. The dogs, too, are of all sizes, colors and pedigrees. They bark joyfully, sniff and chase each other and gambol around like the free spirits that they are.

        I realize just now that being retired is something like a dog’s life. In the popular idiom, the phrase is taken to mean a hard and harsh life. Here, in Oz, the reverse is true.

        Of course, no one serves me hand and foot but, like you, I am self-sufficient and self-contented. In times like these, I feel fortunate and am filled with gratitude that I have been allowed.”

        • Wow, what an uplifting letter. You do have a flair for the right words, and your wisdom knows no bounds. I would like to save this post, it’s so beautiful and refreshing.

          Life in our province is quite stressful nowadays what with all the still poor relations bickering with each other, brutal fights from male cousins after a drinking session, ugh…

          I have decided to invest in a condominium unit that offers almost if not all of what you described: lap pool, tropical garden deck, jogging trails…lifestyle in an urban resort where I look forward to enjoy all the captivating elements of nature, not just one at a time, every single day, to come home everyday to my own urban resort, my private city escape where all the elements of nature find perfect harmony, or so this brochure promises. I’ll see in four months when I accept the unit if I did alright in investing. My dream of retirement home in the province where I will raise my own vegies and my own chicken is still another option when I reach retirement, 20 years from now… for now, this condo unit will be something to look forward to…. later this year.

          • edgar lores says:

            We are of the earth. It’s nice — no, essential — to be grounded in Nature.

            Though not as hard as Juana is. 🙂

        • josephivo says:

          Long, long time an uncle, loved by all kids for his story telling, told me that the easiest way to happiness was to marry a happy partner. Then I was too young to really understand. But now I know that he was right!

          Yes, I like the birds and the sun rise too.

        • Juana Pilipinas says:

          Beautiful letter, edgar. Are you working on a book? If not, you should.

  18. karl garcia says:

    Inter agency problems.
    NBI vs police, Police vs Military, Army vs Marines,etc.

    Intreroperability is a must.

    Shared database for Customs,Trade,Agticulture,BIR,NBI

    Ptoblem, IT vendors come and go, so does inhouse IT.

    • edgar lores says:

      Re centralized databases:

      1. Australia has a federal government node that links tax (BIR), pensions (SSS) and Medicare.

      2. When you open a bank account or any account with a financial institution (like GSIS and SSS), you have to provide your tax account number. If you don’t you are taxed at the highest rate.

      2.1. The banks are required to report interests calculations to the tax office,
      2.2. When you file your tax return, the interest income you report are matched against the bank reports.
      2.3. Your medicare benefits are also matched, although you don’t have this benefit yet. (In Australia, you get a Medicare discount for doctors’ fees and prescription medicine (?).)

      3. A shared database between BIR and NBI is feasible as these would contain individual citizens data. Customs and Trade are more juridical persons than natural persons? If so this might be a separate database but, yes, Customs and Trade can be linked.

      4. In Australia, voter registration is computerized but is not currently linked to the central node.

      4.1. Another database that can be linked is with the individual database are driver’s licence and motor vehicle registration.


      5. An important database that has not been conceived is a cadastral database. Remember the Corona trial when his property assets could not be identified? The Makati-Taguig dispute? And the Binay hacienda debacle?

      5.1. If the entire Philippines could be surveyed and mapped, if local councils could computerize their land and ownership records and these could be linked to a central node, the benefits would be enormous. Think of the impact on agrarian reform, land tax collection, the settlement of land-ownership disputes, the absence of land disputes cases in the judiciary, and honesty in SALNs!

      5.2. The land holdings of rich individuals, corporations and religious organizations would become visible.

      5.3. Friar lands that lie fallow may be taxed or returned to the government (under eminent domain) as a solution to agrarian reform and informal settlers.

      • karl garcia says:

        Thanks Edgar, Why would I mix trade and boc with individual bir and nbi .

        For the individual, a national ID system would be best.

        Many doable suggestions in most of the above and below, somebody may have thought about it for sure, but we will continue to talk about it until we see results.

        property may be matched to income and if donated, was a donor tax payed. It will almost eliminate dummies.

        • nagimasen says:

          don’t know what their problem with national ID. in the US you are identified by your SS number and your drivers license

          • edgar lores says:

            SS numbers and drivers’ licences are issued to adults only. Presumably a national ID would be given at birth. I guess a national database would need to have several keys. Thinking of the difficulty of identifying victims and dead terrorists, also biometric data.

            (The above comment does not address the ethical issues surrounding a national id system and the need for computer power equivalent to an NSA installation.)

            • sonny says:

              Yes. Early on working on mainframes, I thought, with simplicity of computers, why don’t SSA, NSA, FBI, Immigration, etc. computers simply share files for national objectives. Really super naive of me.

            • DAgimas says:

              I don’t see any issue with national ID. you are concerned with ethics, privacy but google and facebook know more about you than the government? so whats the problem?

              as we learned in Intel School, there is no such thing as impenetrable barrier. if the govt wants to spy on you, whether illegal or not, you can not do anything about it.

              unless you are hiding into something??

              think of the convenience of having a national ID. you don’t need to go to the bank, to LTO, to any govt agency. just your computer and presto, you can order all your needs.

              the only time I transacted with a govt agency in the US is when I took the oath of citizenship, take driving test, and register to vote. after that, I just transact thru the internet. pay prop tax, registration, change of address, pay toll, order deed of grant, file inc tax

              compare that with falling in line at LTO, NBI, NSO, SSS, GSIS.?

              • edgar lores says:


                Thank you. I really haven’t thought about the ethical implications of a national ID. You bring up good points. And I agree that a national ID, of which Australia has a partial non-mandatory one, facilitates individual transactions with the state.

                Here are some contra arguments against a national ID:

                One can find many more expositions on the subject on the Internet. I will not regurgitate the contra arguments presented. You have nicely covered Reason #2 (surveillance). I will just state that to me Reasons #3 (database) and #4 (internal passports) are compelling.

                I fear you make certain presumptions that may not be tenable. One presumption is that of the continuance of a benevolent government. Another presumption is that the people in charge of the national ID system will never abuse your personal info.

                Because of inherent problems of a national ID system, such as maintenance of the data and identity theft, it is likely that an initial card system implementation might progress to the implantation of subdermal microchips. The technology already exists and is being used for cosmetic and medicinal purposes. They are also being used to identify cats and dogs. This opens a nightmare scenario under Reasons #2 and #4. Every physical movement you make — and not just transactional movements — can be tracked. I do not know about you, and like you I am a good citizen but — unlike iPhone owners — I would not want to grant anybody the capability of tracing my movements. I may be a good citizen but I may be an inconstant husband or wife.

                I recognize the above is a straw man argument at this stage.

                A national ID brings to mind the tattooing of Jews in WWII, and the consequent discrimination argument in Reason #5.

                The incursions into privacy and, more importantly, into personal freedom are real. Are you really willing and ready to surrender these to the state? And sacrifice these for the sake of mere convenience?

      • sonny says:

        The cadastral database and a unifying ownership system is a must because it is an essential part of how our national economic progress can be discussed and planned. It makes our sovereignty comprehensible. Thanks for bringing it up.

        • edgar lores says:

          The setting up of the database would be at enormous cost. I was just thinking that Google Maps might be used as an adjunct. They have satellite and terrain imagery. There is a feature that can measure distances from which, I would imagine, GPS coordinates can be derived. (If not, portable computers equipped with GPS can provide the information.)

          The granularity seems to differ, and is dependent on local data. When I zoom in on Paranaque, I can see individual streets. When I zoom in on Brisbane, I can see individual plots of land, each of which is numbered. Chicago shows individual plots, but unnumbered.

          We have to be aware also that Google does not show everything, that certain areas are redacted.

          • sonny says:

            Fascinating feasibility considerations you bring up. Way back during realtor classes I vaguely recall how home sites are determined and entered in the Register of Deeds. Also, I tried to use an internet formula using Longit & Latit coordinates to get at an area. I used it for approximating the area of the Sulu Sea. Neat, considering the formula already takes into account the sphericity of the planet’s surface.

          • i7sharp says:

            “The setting up of the database would be at enormous cost.”

            Databases at NSCB
            gave me
            14,600 results
            but am not sure if the database you have in mind is among them.

            If necessary, we can create databases from the
            (Comprehensive Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan)
            but we have yet to see a copy.
            Search for CRRP at the NSCB site proved futile! 😦

            btw, I came upon this just now (I still have to watch the video):
            This video gives you an overview of the 8,000-page, 8-volume document containing 18,648 programs, projects, and activities for the 171 cities and municipalities in 14 provinces across the 6 regions of the Yolanda corridor. The President approved the Yolanda Comprehensive Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan (CRRP) on 29 October 2014. This is the government’s plan towards building back better, faster, and safer. (HFA Priority 1)

            • edgar lores says:

              Thanks, i7sharp, that’s a lot of databases to sift through. I doubt that it is there. During the Corona trial, the government could not accurately pinpoint all the real property assets of the Chief Justice. And the Binay hacienda scandal shows government records are not only not up-to-date but are fraudulent as well. I think it’s a database that has to be slowly built up bottom-up from municipal records and national government bureaus such as the Land Registration Authority; and top-down through aerial and geodetic surveys of the entire country. We are talking not only of horizontal land ownership but vertical ownership as in buildings and condominiums. But a lot of thinking has to go into it first, taking advantage of the advances in technology. I don’t know how the Torrens Title system describes the boundaries of properties, for example, and I was surmising we could use GPS bearings to do that. As in Google Maps, cartography would be an important element of the capabilities of the database. Then, of course, you have a lot of property changing hands, boundaries being redrawn, new developments in real estate occurring, condominiums going up, roads and bridges being built, so you have to provide for a vast amount of ongoing maintenance work on the database as well.

              • i7sharp says:


                More than five years ago, I came upon a article which prompted me to create a simple site on Geodesy.
                It became the very first posting at site:
                Integrated Geodesy & GIS

                Mathematica 7 adds support for advanced high-precision geodesy, providing a modern foundation for accurate geospatial information and computation. With comprehensive support for all standard reference ellipsoids, datums and projections, Mathematica 7 streamlines the process of importing, combining and computing with geospatial data from varied sources—as well as supporting symbolic geodesy, fully integrated with Mathematica’s broad mathematical computation capabilities.
                Import of all common terrain and map file formats. »
                Comprehensive built-in database of geodetic datums and reference ellipsoids. »
                Geodetic forward and inverse problems. »
                Geographic, ECEF, and local tangential ENU coordinate systems. »
                Full 14-parameter datum transforms, including time dependence. »
                Extensive built-in library of cartographic projections. »
                Spherical and high-precision ellipsoidal projections supported.

                I don’t understand much of it but I will look into it again.

                You, Sonny, and others will probably have a better grasp of the info I had gathered and posted there.
                Navigating through the site may need getting used to but the effort may prove worth it.
                Some links may not work because some services – such as the shortener has closed shop.
                I have almost forgotten about the site!

                ps The site’s membership is a GRAND TOTAL of … 1.
                Moi. 🙂

              • edgar lores says:

                i7sharp, now we move into an area that you know more about, that have more expertise in. I have exhausted my limits. What is important is that we all recognize the possibilities of these suggestions, initiatives and technology, and bring it to bear on uplifting the country. Not by ourselves, perhaps, but my people reading the blog. Knowledge spreads, like water, and it cannot be blocked. Even a dam must run-off part of the water it holds as tributaries or rain fills it to capacity.

                Come to think of it, this blog and social media is a sort of reservoir and fount.

              • The excellent noah project had an offshoot of using LIDAR to map disaster prone problem areas (and if I am remembering it correctly the whole Philippines).

                In a way we have more up to date data with elevation and terrain.

            • i7sharp says:

              @edgar, @karl (“TANOD”)

              I thought I had seen Edgar’s response to
              but minutes later when I tried to send a response to it I could not find it anymore.

              In any case, …
              Edgar, can you please help or send another reply?

              • i7sharp says:

                A quick follow-up.
                It appeared again – right above my question about it!

                A quirk on my tablet? On WordPress?
                On my brain – before breakfast? 🙂

          • Can someone correct me,
            I believe current land titles already contain the coordinates of a land. Of course land titles that are older probably do not contain this.

            It would just be a case of encoding these within a simple system.

            The government is flushed with cash and we need stimulus.

            A government education for work program would be perfect for this encoding work.

            • edgar lores says:

              1. You are probably right. Description of Torrens Title from Wikipedia:

              “The land register is the central aspect of the Torrens system. Originally the register was a bound paper record, but today the register is typically kept in a database.

              “On the first registration of land under the system, the land is given a unique number (called a folio) which identifies the land by reference to a registered plan. The folio records the dimensions of the land and its boundaries, the name of the registered owner, and any legal interests that affect title to the land. To change the boundaries of a parcel of land, a revised plan must be prepared and registered. Once registered, the land cannot be withdrawn from the system.”

              2. In the Oz Certificate of Title that I have, there is a lot number and reference to a registered plan number within the county (barrio?) and parish (municipality?). The dimensions are not in the certificate. It would be in the registered plan.

              3. The registered plan is probably textual with a map derived from land surveys. As above, it describes the dimensions of the land probably by using the cardinal directions of the compass allied to some reference point. It may not provide GPS coordinates though.

              4. GPS coordinates would be essential for visual mapping.

              5. The land itself may contain markers (wooden stakes, concrete posts, clay pot shards?) to indicate boundaries.

              • i7sharp says:

                Edgar, Sonny, Giancarlo, et al:

                Re Torrens Title, Cadastre, …

                Please try these:




              • edgar lores says:


                Thanks. Found these two items in the first Google item:

                1. “As of December 2002, the status of Cadastral Survey in the Philippines is as follows:

                o From a total of 1,496 municipalities, there are 827 with approved cadastral survey, 321 are in-progress, 280 are partially surveyed, 65 are still unsurveyed and 3 are abandoned.

                o Out of 114 cities, 89 are with approved cadastral surveys, 16 are in-progress, 9 are partially surveyed and there is no unsurveyed.”

                2. “The municipalities and cities with approved cadastral surveys covers 4,487,311 lots with a total area of 17,848,035 hectares, roughly 59% of the total area of the country. However, the data stored in the different Regional Offices of the DENR are still all in hard copies not in digital forms. Computer-based Land Information System and digital mapping project is hampered by funding constraints.”

                There is indeed much work to be done.

              • i7sharp says:

                FIG Congress 2014
                Engaging the Challenges – Enhancing the Relevance
                Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 16-21 June 2014

                Linking the Land Information Systems in the Philippines Using the LADM as a Global Schema

                Romer Kristi Aranas, Engineer, Rhodora Gonzalez and Louie Balicanta (Philippines)

                Key words: Cadastre; Digital cadastre; e-Governance;

                The Philippines has multiple land registration agencies which have their own separate and isolated land administration systems. This result in the duplication of software development and redundant and sometimes conflicting data. These undermine the security of tenure as well as inconvenience the citizens and other users of said data. Connecting these systems would therefore enable better coordination between the agencies and offer significant savings in manpower and resources. In this paper, an approach for integration of the existing legacy systems using the LADM as a global schema is proposed. The LADM is extended to accommodate the existing Philippine land administration systems data models. The resulting data model is a minimal country profile that accommodates the existing databases and should serve as a contribution in the development of the full LADM country profile for the Republic of the Philippines.

              • edgar lores says:

                LADM = Land Administration Domain Model

  19. karl garcia says:

    An exerpt from a speech from Raffy Alunan about National defense.

    Finally, in the larger scheme of things, I’d like to make three points.

    First, based on the way the government has been conducting itself in the area of national defense, the era of mendicancy is a thing of the past. We are picking ourselves up from the floor and behaving as we should in the spirit of interdependence.

    It is this same spirit that should underlie the basis for our security partnerships and alliances. Today, in the absence of credible deterrence, it is allowing strategic prepositioning because of what our geographic location offers. Tomorrow, credible deterrence would make us a firm link of a strong unbreakable chain, able to hold our own in the event that tensions with China break out into open conflict.

    That should include economic security – trade, industry, finance; human security – jobs, food, energy; and ecological security – forests, soil, mangroves, water; and political security – good government, responsible citizenship.

    Second, the national leadership should sustain its efforts to build that credible deterrence. I may be wrong but in the area of national defense for instance, I think that we are underspending despite the dangers to PH security. If I am not mistaken, the proposed 2015 defense budget is less than 1% of total. Compare this to the region’s annual average spending of 3% of GDP! We cannot hope to effectively shield the country from harm if government continues to unreasonably underspend.

    Finding funding solutions is key to that. Clamping down on corruption and inefficiency is vital. If the rule of thumb is that 20% of the annual budget is lost to corruption and inefficiency that would amount to around P540-Billion of 2015’s proposed national budget. If government endeavored to reduce the leakage by half that would produce additional free cash of at least P270-Billion annually.

    Utilizing the Malampaya fund in defense of energy resources in the KIG is another. According to Justice Carpio, the Court has issued a ruling that allows the use of Malampaya funds precisely for that purpose.

    Launching a Patriot Bond for sale in the world’s capital markets is another. Additionally, expert government-to-government negotiations could produce beneficial results in terms of pricing and funding foreign military sales. Investments inindustrial parks to produce dual-use or civilian-military equipment and systems would spur industrial development.

    All that needs leadership to harness a brain trust to determine the right mix of funding sources, integrate government and private sector initiatives, and orchestrate the complex effort of ensuring continuity until the mission is accomplished.

    Third, speaking of a Patriot Bond, it’s crucial to the build-up of a “credible deterrence” for the national leadership to promote and instill a strong enduring sense of patriotism in the citizenry, complemented by a sense of urgency within the national security community.

    One worthwhile idea is the long-awaited retooling of the Reserve Force Development Program to include the return of the mandatory CMT and ROTC courses under professional management, to firm up intestinal fortitude, inculcate discipline and cultivate the virtue of selfless service to the nation.

    The enemy is not just at the gates, it’s found its way in already. If we are to survive as a free nation, we must build our inner strengths to expel and repel the forces of darkness in our midst.

    I’ll end here. Thank you for your patience.


    Patriot bond? is it like govenment securities were we lend money to government.

    Ok pattiot bonds to pay all our external debt would be nice.
    Then patriot bond to fund the national budget

    6 Trillion divided by 100 million = 6 million(??) per citizen????

    • If you compare that measly 6 million pesos per citizen to the amount the US wasted in Iraq and Af-Pak, absolutely no accounting, that’s chump change, karl. So for China, the US will cough a crap load, the Philippines priority should be that it stays there, spent well, and not returned to the US by way of Beverly Hills parties for some politicians daughter’s debut.

      • karl garcia says:

        twelve zeros minus eight = four zeroes s it is 60,000. chump change it is.

        sorry for my lazy math.

        • karl garcia says:

          If for example the original afp modernization program of 340 billion in fifteen years was not realized, not by a long shot. Assets from bases conversion, Afp savings and loan interest income, malampaya revenues, and sometimes 5 bilion from budget; only resulted to less than 30 billion spent for modernization.How will a round 2 be financed differently?
          Methinks a secific purpose bond to raise 500 Billion for AFP modernization be offered to the world. It can also be done for education, like 1 Trillion for k 12 program.1 Trillion for disaster prevention and relief,1 trillion for Agriculture modernization,etc….

    • The Chinese Military budget estimates range from 100B USD to 220B USD.
      The Philippine Military budget is around 2B USD.

      The discrepancy 50 to 100 times depending on estimates.
      If you factor in the lack of progress from Marcos to GMA with respect to military spending over 25-35 years and even adjusting for the chinese economic miracle that is only around 20years we can see that we can never win this game.

      We can only be smart about where we spend.

      If I had a chance to bet on where we are going to spend and we had the US and Japan’s backing I’d say that building a nuclear bomb is the only way that the discrepancy in buying power could be remedied.

      The minimum credible threat that we could pose even if we spend 10 percent of GDP is probably 30-50 years too far in the future.

      Just my two cents.

      A naval version of the DMZ should also be in play.

      If the US is continuing development of the Star Wars anti ICBM/nukes we could host those systems.

      Star War’s systems protect the air, Naval DMZ for the sea and for the land and we have terrorist style armaments for land.

  20. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    BENIGNO AQUINO III went to Indonesia to plead stay of execution: DENIED
    ARCHBISHOP TAGLE prayed intergalactic intervention: DENIED
    INQUIRER … did not ask stay of execution: VELOSO EXECUTION DO NOT MAKE MONEY
    INQUIRER … did not assign dedicated staff for Veloso coverage: THE DEDICATED STAFF ARE DEPLOYED TO COVER MANNY PACQUIAO
    FILIPINOS … are not protesting and martsa-martsa-sa-EDSA: FILIPINOS ARE PREPARING FOR MANNY PACQUIAO FIGHT


  21. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:


    US$266,666,666.00 !!!!

    Php5.00 per fanatically Religious Filipinos give to church on a Sunday. Multiply that by a conservative number of 50,000,000 church-goer. Multiply that number by 4 Sundays in a month. Multiply that number by 12 months in a year. THEY RAKE IN Php12,000,000,000 (Twelve Billion Pesos in a Year) Divide that number by Php45/US$ = US$266,666,666.00

    NOT BAD !!!!! That is why the Church is against Condominization of the Philippines !!!!!

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      That does not include revenues from:
      1. Special and Regular baptism
      2. Special and Regular Wedding
      3. Home-service Mass: SELF-SERVICE IS NOT ALLOWED
      4. Drive-by Confessions:
      5. Agustinian investments in San Miguel Corp
      6. Malacanang Special Masses
      7. Renato Corona Personal Defensive Mass
      8. Binay Family Personal Defensive Mass
      9. Blessings of New Cars
      10.Blessings of New House


    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      The church also delve into PROTECTION RACKET worthy of RICO:
      The bigger the ecclesiastical bribery the harder they are prosecuted. Example: Binays, Renato Corona and all U.P. educated crooks.

    • karl garcia says:

      The Iglesia requires 10% of income
      If 100 k members earn 10 k monthly that would be 100 million monthly 1.2 billion per annum
      And if 1 k member earn 1million monthly would be another 1.2 billion yearly

      So an estimate of 2.4 billion annualy from INC Members, what if there are more of them?

      • not true karl. There are no specified amounts or percentages.

        • Please elaborate on this, giancarlo. I am curious how the INC members “tithe.” It takes a lot of money to build those architecturally complex churches so the donations must be br real generous.

          • Voluntary Offering as it is officially termed is a basic teaching of the church. The basic premise is that 2 Corinthians 9:7 “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

            There is no set amount.

            There are 4 main offerings:
            1. Offerings during worship service
            2. Offerings for Local/District expenditures.
            3. Offerings for Lingap/Social Projects of the church such as relocation of disaster survivors (Yolanda/Bohol quake) and Livelihood projects such as the eco farming projects in Nueva Ecija/Leyte etc.
            4. End of year thanksgiving.

            The only duty is to give for ALL these. The example given is even if you give 1M for only one of these you were not compliant compared to a member who gives 10 pesos to each of the 4 offerings.

            On a personal note I do end of year tabulation of all my spendings. I tallied around 14-18 percent of income depending on what I include.

        • karl garcia says:

          Sorry Giancarlo,I listened to chismis.So all I can say is there are many generous INC people as per wiki are 2.45 % of Ph population.and 1.37 mil vote.
          My ballpark figures above is way way off,but still I am impressed of the funds that came from tithes and other sources of funds and revenue(based on the churches and the biggest arena ever).

  22. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    One Filipino, I AM SURE THERE ARE MANY OF THEM, said that Mary Jane Veloso died because she is AMBISYOSA to go abroad !!! So, people, DO NOT BE AMBITIOUS. It is BAD!!! It is against the cultural grain of the Filipinos and the church. Because the church taught Filipinos, “IT IS EASIER TO PASS THRU THE EYE OF THE NEEDLE THAN A RICH FILIPINO”

  23. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    FILIPINOS FIND AMERICA EVIL. Porn are sold in the streets. Free XXXWeekly, a classified ads of escorts and strip clubs. No prayers in school. No crucifixes or Ten commandments planted in public places. They do not pray for Veloso, they only say “moment of silence”. They cannot spank their children. So many things that Filipinos cannot do.

    BUT THEY LINE AROUND THE EMBASSY thru rain or snow or sleet to go to my country to REAP WHAT THE DEVIL AMERICANS HAVE SOWN.

    Does that make Filipinos Evil, too?

  24. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    If China didn’t develop Spratleys, Panganiban Shoals and Scarborough, WHO WILL?
    If Irish and English did not “reclame” (that is what AFP brass used) the New World and made it into America as known today, WHO WOULD HAVE?
    If U.K. did not reclaim Falklands, would Argentina had developed it into tourist destination?
    If Spain had not “reclame” Tenerife from the Polynesians ….
    If Hawaii were not grabbed by Americans …
    If Samoa …
    If corrupt South Vietnam were not invaded by North Vietnam …

    Protection of SPRATLEYS, PANGANIBAN SHOALS AND SCARBOROUGH is expensive. If the world gives it back to Filipinos, WOULD THEY DEVELOP IT? FOR WHOM? Can I afford to go there? Can ordinary Filipinos get to see these islands that the Philippine Government stole food from hungry children to protect it. FOR WHOM THE GOVERNMENT IS PROTECTING THESE ISLANDS? ZOBELs? THE GATES? HENRY SYs? LUCIO TANs? Does tourism enough to recover the cost of protecting these islands?

    Filipinos are environmentalists an excuse that Filipinos cannot afford to develop and drill these islands.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      The Oil drill exploration along Tanon Strait is strucked down by Supreme Court to protect the habitat of the dolphins over the dead bodies of starving hungry Filipino children.

      The dolphins are more important than Filpinos.

      It is no wonder the dogs of slaveholders in the Philippines have better menu than their slaves.

    • nagimasen says:

      what a moron. reclamation is different from colonization. the places you mentioned are islands and continents, not shoal or reefs. shoals or reefs are part of the see hence res nullus, it belongs to the global commons. since with the passage of ITLOS, the exploitation of the sea up to 200 miles belongs to the littoral state

      now Filipino fishermen cant even fish on those shoals anymore

  25. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Houseslaves in the Philippines do not have rights.
    1. They do not have sick time
    2. No Vacation Time
    3. No nap time
    4. No lunch time
    5. No dinner time.
    6. No Social Security
    7. No breaktime
    8. Works from sunup to sunup
    9. Works in the most deplorable condition
    10 No weekends off
    11 Raped
    12. Laughed at
    13. Not given a semblance of dignity
    14. No free spech

    And to think the Filipinos are vemently violently fanatically religious people !!!!!

    • josephivo says:

      … but they keep many families upright. Start implementing the minimum wage laws, apply huge penalties, ask Kim Henares for advise.

    • This is the reason I cannot morally agree to house help.

      I wanted to give house help minimum wage and my budget chief says we cannot afford it.

      Hence no house help.

  26. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Philippines is the center of RICE RESEARCH. This is where Miracle Rice was invented. Philippines to this day import and smuggle rice. They do not have food security. They are food challenged.

    • This one deserves an honest analysis, I talked to a soil scientist doing work for an NGO, who fondly remembered when farming, agriculture experts from around SE Asia used to go to the Philippines. Experts in any field should be considered national resources, and as such safeguarded (here, they have national labs, national facilities for R&D).

      How did the Philippines, in detail, lose this expertise and status among its SE Asian neighbors. What role did the UN play in all this? What of gov’t funding? I heard most of these experts in agriculture have moved to America or become permanent UN personnel.

      • josephivo says:

        Agriculture is organized around small family farms. Efficiency requires minimal investments (seeds, irrigation, fertilizer, tools….) but even this small money disappears in the pockets of the corrupt.

        Industrial farming is not the solution. Providing initial loans to boost productivity is. Organizing formers in powerful associations is.

  27. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Here is non-U.P. 1stworld journalist report news.
    1. They vet the alleged facts
    2. They interview both protagonists
    3. Then publish

    Here is U.P. 3rdworld journalist report news
    1. They bet alleged facts makes money
    2. They interview one side today
    3. Interview the otherside tomorrow
    4. The other responds today
    5. The otherside respondos tomorrow
    6. The newspapers are made into one whole comic strips where there is no ending only the beginning

    U.P.-educated 3rdworld bureaucrats
    1. They tell the clueless media the gossips
    2. Media publish. See above for loopy-loop
    3. No evidence. Just witnesses and affidavits
    4. Witnesses have witnesses no evidence
    5. Witnesses issue affidavits
    6. Affidavits published in the papers
    7. Affidavits read by the other side
    8. Other side issue affidavits
    9. Publish their own affidavits
    10. Affidavit war ensues
    11. Philippine Media makes money
    12. Filipinos clueless as forever

    • Judicial affidavits are now done to replace the usual questions and answers at court trials. The court and the other parties are furnished copies of this judicial affidavit so they can prepare in advance for the cross examination of the witness who executed these judicial affidavits. In court trials, judicial affidavits are not the only evidences offered. Various evidences are presented, marked and accepted in the hearings.

      I am becoming sick and tired of your rants against affidavits, articles after articles, you keep on insisting that they are wrong. Are you a lawyer, a member of the Supreme Court in the first world you are now living in?

      i don’t see any affidavits in media… at least those that are being used in lawsuits still being tried, I think that is a violation of the sub judice rule.

      • You are sick and tired of U.P. 3rd world journalist report , no not only them, you are sick and tired of us Filipinos, we are the worst creation if words against us that you post here and in other blogs and newspapers you hate are to be believed, well, do you think it’s time for you to erase us from your 1st world existence? Concentrate on the excellent race that you belong to now and don’t mind us Filipinos. We are only causing you to be angry and you say you have anger management problem. Do yourself a favor and forget about us. We will manage here without you and your negative rants and demeaning remarks.

        • josephivo says:

          I might have to repeat:

          The Germans say: “Humor ist, wenn man trotzdem lacht” or humor is when you laugh anyhow. For some it takes time to appreciate MRP (when he has no verbal diarrhea)

          Try to laugh and then think why you are upset at the same time. It helped me a lot.

          The Philippines has an addiction for affidavits. I needed an notarized affidavit to proof that I was me. I with my new EU passport with all administrative and bio data and an abbreviated 4e first name issued by special trained civil servants, me with my old EU passport with a the same data issued by the same civil servants, but with a fully spelled 4e first name.

          • I find it hard to laugh when he continues to dish out demeaning remarks to us Filipinos.

            I do have a sense of humor, I even laugh at myself, imperfect as I am, but I am hurt when he pollutes most social media comments section with the same messages, making fun of us. No, not funny at all.

            • josephivo says:

              I agree that not all MRP interventions are equally tactful, just skip them. But sometimes he touches sour part that need attention and healing. Jesters can call things that we cannot.

          • Yep, true….The Philippines has an addiction for affidavits. I am often called upon to assist staff members who want to apply for a Pag-ibig, SSS or other loans and could not have them processed because our HRD misspelled parts of their name or surname. I had to prepare a an affidavit of discrepancy. (See, I’m also the unofficial corporate lawyer, joke)

            Affidavit of loss, affidavit of support (for minors who wish to travel) special power of attorney, affidavit of no income… etc, etc… I can understand that because sensitive documents like title need to be released to the rightful owner, that’s fine for in this day and age when even identities can be stolen, we all have to be extra cautious and we can certainly appreciate the government for being strict as well as careful.

    • I should be offended but as can be seen in a lot of my previous comments I fucking hate the media in the Philippines, people who should know better specially.

  28. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Has it every occurred to anyone that Philippines is a vast wasteland? Here are examples:

    1. You can pee anywhere in the Philippines except in places where there is a posted sign: “HUWAG UMIHI DITO, DOON”

    In 1stWorld countries, we only have designated places to pee with signage “TOILET” “COMFORT ROOM” “RESTROOM”

    2. You can throw garbage anywhere in the Philippines except in places where there is a sign posted: “HUWAG MAGTAPON NG BASURA, DITO, DOON”

    In 1stWorld countries, we do not have the luxury to throw our trashes anywhere except in designated places “CANS HERE” “RECYCLEABLES HERE” “CIGARETTE BUTTS HERE”

    In 1stWorld country, police are to prevent pickpocketers and snatchers. In the Philippines it is your obligation to prevent it. An example in every station of the cross in Basilica del Sto. Nino in Cebu City, “BEWARE OF PICKPOCKETS” INSIDE THE CHURCH, DUDE ! Inside the church!

    • What’s your solutions, Mariano? Define a problem and offer solutions, that’s the point to this open discussion. Otherwise you’re cluttering the thread. Define a problem or post a problem, as we’ve all done above and offer solutions. Let’s keep this simple, and manageable, so the thread doesn’t get cluttered.

      As Marines in Pendleton and San Diego we pee’d pretty much everywhere when drunk and threw trash everywhere. I’m not proud of it, but the point is that human behaviour is similar all around. We have pick pockets here too, our barracks are full of thieves. I’ve visited other 1st World nations, they do the same. Only difference is the ratio of unwanted behaviour to wanted behaviour–but it’s the same behaviour all throughout the world.

      Just because some can hide it better than others doesn’t mean it’s not there. Stay the course offer solutions.

    • jameboy says:

      “In 1stWorld countries, we only have…..”

      “In 1stWorld countries, we do not have…..” – Mariano Renato Pacifico
      Good for you, Manoy! I’m just wondering why do you waste your time talking about the Philippines when obviously you are enjoying a good life in the “1st world”?

      I don’t see any sense in what you say except to brag that you are a lucky guy from the Philippines who by twists of fate ended up in the “1st world”. I wonder if, like other Filipinos whose intelligence, talent and skills brought them in other countries, you went from 3rd world to 1st world because of the same reason or a family member just petitioned you.

      Lastly, as a reminder, even 1st world is not immune to people we call “utak-bibe” or what they call it there simply as nuts. 👷

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        I went to the former colonizer, USA, to surrender and apply for re-colonization so they can run my life like heaven than by Filipinos like Philippines.

        I am just an ordinary guy who can plainly see what is wrong with the News and the people behind it but not gifted with intelligence to offer solutions.

        • jameboy says:

          “I went to the former colonizer, USA, to surrender and apply for re-colonization so they can run my life like heaven…” – Mariano Renato Pacifico
          Well, obviously the US really made your life like “heaven”. But I have doubts as to whether it made you a better person. In fact, knowing your own self, the ‘like heaven’ life you enjoy only heightens the insecurities in you.

          Just look at the posts you put up here, it doesn’t have a center. No balance in terms of logic and reason and no sense with regard to purpose. It’s all about bragging and noises about nothing really. You think you’re putting down your former country by saying all those things but the impression you’re giving is a person with poor image of himself. It could be the effect of the act of surrendering to a former colonizer.

          In fairness, there are Filipinos now living abroad who suffers the same disease you have the exact name of which escapes me at the moment. 👨

        • Juana Pilipinas says:

          Mariano, let’s be partner for a better Philippines. You state the problem, and we’ll brainstorm for its solution. Please try to write the problem in a more tactful way to avoid ruffled feathers and we’ll try our darndest to solve it.

          I know you love Filipinos and the Philippines or you will not be here. Reserve your “kutya” style for the Inquirer crowd. You do not have to use it here, we “get” you.

          • jameboy says:

            Mariano, let’s be partner for a better Philippines. You state the problem, and we’ll brainstorm for its solution.

            I know you love Filipinos and the Philippines or you will not be here.

            Reserve your “kutya” style for the Inquirer crowd. You do not have to use it here, we “get” you. – Juana Filipinas

            If Filipinos wanted to be respected, FILIPINOS HAVE TO DO IT MY WAY AND ONLY MY WAY, THE AMERICAN WAY. – Mariano Renato Pacifico
            Classic, just classic! 🙂 🙂 🙂

            • I see the behavior MRP is manifesting in some Filipinos here in the US, jameboy. It is a defense mechanism. Kinukutya nila ang mga naiwang Filipino at ang Pilipinas dahil hindi nila naiindintihan kung bakit hindi mabilis and asenso ng kabuhayan sa Pilipinas. Madami ang nagmamahal sa ating mga kababayan at sa ating bansa pero frustrated lang sila kaya nagiging mga nega. Sa akin, para maging lalung proresibo ang Pilipinas, meron mga factors na kailangan pang asikasuhin ng mga mamamayan at ng gobyerno. Dito sa Amerika, yung mga mechanisms para sa pag-asenso ng buhay ng indibiduwal, marami ang available. Sa Pilipinas, limited ang oportunidad pero unti-unti nang tinutugunan ng mga mamamayan at ng pamahalaan and mga kinakailangang factors para sa kasaganaan. The country and its citizenry are rising.

              People who have been around here for a while know that there is wisdom in MRP’s rants. He is easily redirected when he crosses the line. A lot of people here do not take offense to most of his diatribes because he often make a lot sense if one has to analyze his seemingly self indulgent ramblings. He makes us think and sometimes saves us from complacency.

              • jameboy says:

                Defense mechanism for what and why?

                ‘Yun na nga ang masama, nasa Amerika ka na pero and style mo (not you) bulok pa rin. Bakit kailangang mangutya? Nangungutya ka kasi hindi mo naiintindihan kung bakit mabagal ang asenso sa Pinas? Hindi ba dapat unawa ang iniisip natin para maintindihan ang katotohanan? Hindi dahil ‘frustrated’ ka mangungutya ka na. Hindi masamang mangutya kung ito ay patungkol do’n sa mga malalaking tao na abusado, garapal, magnanakaw sa kaban ng bayan, mga gawaing hindi mabuti. Pero para lahatin mo ang mga Pilipino tapos binubuhat mo pa ang sarili mong bangko para patunayang ikaw ang magaling at ang Amerika ang mahusay at hindi ang Pinas/Pinoy ay isang kahunghangan.

                Si MRP, parang ibong tarat sa likod ng kalabaw. Masyadong maingay kasi hindi gaya nating mga sisiw, mas mainam ang lagay niya kasi “overlooking” ang view sa itaas. Nega, tama ka, at ‘yan ay epekto ng over-the-back-of-the-carabao mentality. Maraming kababayan natin sa abroad/Amerika ang may ganyang nakakadiring mentalidad. Mayabang. Mapang-lait. Hambog at parang probinsiyanong naka-punta sa Maynila at pagbalik sa probinsiya akala mo kung sino na. Feeling niya mas malaki at mas mataas pa siya sa kalabaw.

                You see “wisdom” in MRP’s rant I see hate and ignorance and garbage. Proof? According to you he needs to be ‘redirected’. Isn’t that a giveaway? Isn’t it embarrassing explaining and defending someone that requires to be redirected just to make sense? He cannot argue sensibly so you have to do it for him. He cannot be objective so you have to interpret him. He should be the one talking and defending his nonsense statements instead of you. I agree he really makes you think and you don’t have a choice because you have to explain him after redirecting him.

                You do not take offense with the ridicule and insult? MRP must be doing something good to you. He must have found your weak spot. All I can say is, good luck. 🎭

              • This goes for you as well, jameboy.

                “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.”

                ~ Voltaire

                Freedom of speech. Open mindedness. Compassion. And lot more GOOD reasons to listen to someone who may have a different view than you.

                We both do not know who MRP really is so walang personalan. Kinutya mo rin ako sa last paragraph mo, huh?

              • jameboy says:


                I thought you agree with MRP that is why you went the length to interpret and explain the “wisdom” in his statements?

                You don’t need to quote Voltaire, nobody’s preventing anyone here to say what one what to say.

                Kinutya kita like the pangungutya ni MRP? Please. You can say I resorted to sarcasm in disagreeing with you pero hindi kita kinutya if that’s your understanding of it. Anyway, if I hurt your feelings, accept my apology. ✌

              • @jameboy

                Apology accepted.

                If you read your past comments, jameboy, you will see that there’s not much difference between you and MRP. You both use sarcasm when you are passionate about issues being discussed. You also both want a better Philippines for Filipinos.

                Please focus on what we all have in common and the reason why we are drawn to Joe’s blog: We love Filipinos and the Philippines. Let’s all refrain from the divisive mindset. We need all the unity we can muster to fight for what our countrymen and country deserve.

              • jameboy says:

                When you accuse you show proof. Like what I did in your post. Show a post of mine showing proof that we are the same. You admitted MRP resort to kutya and you see “wisdom” in it. Fine, just don’t involve me in your admiration with his kutya style. Unlike him, I don’t talk to my self. I engage, present opposite ideas/opinion and I rough it up with the rest if necessary. By that I mean I discuss, debate, argue and apologize if needed.

                Not all here loves Filipinos or Pinas. That’s an illusion. I’m shock that you don’t realize that. MRP has been saying all those insulting, condescending and disparaging words against the country and people. And you say we all love the Pinoys and Pinas?

                MRP, based on his posts, which you conveniently ignore, loves himself, period. Look, you keep on defending and explaining him for almost two days now. Did you even hear/read even one sentence from him about the issue and “wisdom” you see in what he said? Or even come to your side to justify and defend your admitration for him? Nada.

                You are already a captive audience, Juana. Nothing in what you’re going to say about MRP will surprise me. I suggest you stop talking for him. It’s not really a pretty sight. MRP can speak for himself in the way he knows how. Don’t baby sit him. The fact that you see wisdom in what he says only proves he’s superior than you or those who agrees with him.

                If you are sincere in calling for unity and focus you’re not going to vouch for somebody who keeps on saying divisive and insulting statements that you yourself admit is “pangungutya”.

                Go ahead swoon over MRP. For me, I’ll just go back on the issue. 👦

              • @jameboy

                Let us end the discussion here. We obviously do not see eye to eye.

                May peace be with you.

  29. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    VELOSO SPARED !!! Thank you Benigno Aquino !!!

    Malaysia should understand Benigno Aquino got the flak when Filipinos hunted down Marwan so Malaysia can live in peace !!!!!

    Thank you!!! Thank you very much!!! NO THANKS TO THE INQUIRER !!! NO THANKS TO THE PHILIPPINE MEDIA !!!

  30. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    INCREDIBLE INVESTIGATION! Only in the Philippines!

    1. All investigations in the Philippines turns to confession and admission. Why?
    2. Veloso spared after Recruiter surrendered. Actually, she walked into NBI and said “kill me, I am the recruiter”
    3. Could the woman who walked in is a stand-in for the Real Recruiter? Nobody would just walk in and admit.
    4. Since Philippine investigations turns to confession and admission, SENATE WAS THINKING IF THEY PUT SOMEONE AT THE HOT SEAT, THEY’D CONFESS. So far Tiu is not confessing.

  31. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Compiled and condensed Funny News that you may have missed in cacophony of misinformations:

    1. Senator Trillanes asked Tiu to bring TCT of BinayLand instead of HIM demanding Register of Deeds a copy of TCT of BinayLand. When Tiu presented Trillanes the TCT not in his name nor in his patron’s name, Trillanes was mad.
    2. Senator Trillanes went to BinayLand to verify if it is owned by Binay and Tiu
    a. Senator Trillanes is saying he went to BinayLand because all of the properties in the Philippines should have a sign that says “KEEP OUT. PROPERTY OWNED BY BINAY” sign. OUTRAGEOUS. ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE. Inquirer is silent. Because they are party to this comic-drama.
    3. TeaMilk deaths. NOBODY CAN KNOW WHAT CHEMICAL THAT WAS. Instead they asked the son of the dead owner what they placed in the TeaMilk. Huh?
    a. It must have been an unknown chemical. A newfound Chemical because it is not registered in Periodic Table. The coroner cannot know. They sent it to U.P. for further analysis, they cannot know. Instead, they asked the son of the dead owner what they dropped in the TeaMilk. AWESOME BRILLIANCE. EFFICIENT.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      The son of the TeaMilk owner should receive a Nobel Prize in Science for discovering and concocting a new found Chemical that U.P. scientists cannot know and analyze.

  32. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Here is what cannot be read from Philippine Media about Floyd-Manny fight. This is from the big boys of sports in Forbes Magazine not from kindergartner U.P. graduate Philippine Media.

  33. Lilit Trinidad says:

    Some friends on FB scandalized by Inquirer’s banner headline “Death came before dawn”. Too bad Joe is missing it.

    • Yeah, “Death came before dawn”.. for the eight others, the ninth, our very own MJV was spared at the last minute… if the Inquirer meant MJV’s death, their deadline to run the printing press came before news of the stay of her execution. It happens.

      • Lilit Trinidad says:

        They had a kicker line, “The nation was praying for a miracle to save her”, and they had her photo above. So they clearly wanted people to make the connections.

        And there’s a responsible way to get around the deadline problem when you’re anticipating something big will happen after. The last time something similar occurred was when a Chicago paper headlined that Dewey defeated Truman before the official announcement that Truman won.

  34. Straight from the hose’s mouth:

    Sevilla: No lobbying, just discussions with execs

    MANILA, Philippines – There were only “discussions,” but no lobbying by Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. and Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima and two other officials for the transfer of an official of the Bureau of Customs, resigned Customs commissioner John Sevilla said yesterday.

    “I am deeply saddened by the emergence of a number of erroneous and misleading reports regarding my resignation from the Bureau of Customs,” Sevilla said in a statement.

    “No one at any point lobbied me to appoint attorney Teddy Raval as director of the Enforcement and Security Service (ESS),” he said.

    But he admitted he had discussions about Raval’s potential reassignment or appointment to various positions at the BOC with Ochoa, Purisima, deputy executive secretary Teofilo Pilando and finance undersecretary for revenue operations and legal affairs Carlo Carag “at various points starting in late 2013 and through 2014.”

    “I was initially told that the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) was pushing for his reassignment to the Intelligence Division,” he added.

    Sevilla said he had no confirmation that the INC was pushing for Raval’s appointment, as no one from the INC ever contacted him directly.
    Headlines ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

    “I did not reassign attorney Raval to the Intelligence Division, or any other areas within the Bureau of Customs. The officials mentioned… fully respect this,” he said.

    Interviewed on CNN Philippines, Sevilla mentioned Ochoa, Purisima, Pilando and Carag as the ones who were pushing for the transfer of Raval.
    Personal decision

    Contrary to speculations, Sevilla said it was also his own decision to leave the BOC. “I was not fired,” he said.

    “No one, not Executive Secretary Ochoa, not Secretary Purisima, nor anyone else pressured me at any point to resign from the bureau,” he said.

    He said Ochoa and Purisima even urged him to remain at Customs.

    “As I stated during the press conference I held on Thursday, April 24, I resigned as I disagreed with the prospective appointment of attorney Raval as director of the ESS and believed that it would be better for Customs to be led by someone who could better navigate a more political environment than me, while continuing structural reforms,” he said.
    Support for Lina

    Sevilla said he is hoping newly appointed Customs chief Alberto Lina would have the support of Customs stakeholders, and make the BOC efficient, effective and free of corruption and politics.

    “Commissioner Lina and Secretary Purisima will have my support and any help they may need from me,” he said.
    No milking cow

    Sevilla also denied allegations that he was being asked to make the BOC a milking cow of the ruling Liberal Party (LP).

    United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) interim president and Navotas City Rep. Tobias Tiangco had said Sevilla was pressured by the LP to to raise P3 billion to be used by the party in the 2016 elections.

    “No person or political party ever, at any point, asked me to raise funds, or use Customs to raise funds,” Sevilla said.
    No comment

    Malacañang refused to comment on Sevilla’s statement.

    “I wouldn’t be able to answer that question considering that this is a statement from Sunny Sevilla himself,” presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said.

    “I cannot provide you any other speculation, theory or conjecture as to his present statement… I wouldn’t hazard to put words into Sunny’s mouth. All I can refer you is the statements he just issued,” he said during yesterday’s press briefing.

    Purisima also declined to comment, pointing instead to the statement of Sevilla. “Com. Sunny issued a statement today. Why don’t you refer to that,” he said in a text message to reporters.

    Purisima is in Malaysia as part of President Aquino’s official delegation to 26th Association of Southeast Nations leaders’ summit. – With Delon Porcalla, Zinnia dela Peña, Christina Mendez

    • edgar lores says:

      Thanks, Mary.

    • josephivo says:

      So Sevilla talked to a lawyer and got scared?

        • josephivo says:

          He did name people and INC without having written affidavits. Potential libel charges? (Physical treats are not uncommon in the Philippines neither)

          • joseph,

            I can see if intimidation is towards the weak, powerless, poor people, but how does intimidation actually works when it comes to high powered individuals there? Do you have examples. This is for the article I’m writing, on lawyers there and ACLU.

            • josephivo says:

              Read “An Anarchy of Families” edited by Alfred McCoy for plenty of examples.

              I don’t have explicit recent examples, First Gentlemen Arroyo suing everybody?

              • Thanks, joseph!

                ***the classic “three g’s”, guns, goons and gold, of Philippine politics with the contemporary “four c’s”—continuity, Chinese, criminality, and celebrity.***

                The book’s not in the library, will look around in used book stores. In the mean time, do you have examples that cover the classic 3 g’s and the contemporary 4 c’s? I’m not too familiar with “continuity”, does this just mean old money, old families trying to be relevant at all costs?

                The other 3 g’s and 3 c’s, I saw. In Mindanao, there was a group of former police who were running an extortion racket and taking over small mining claims. I’ve always wondered how much gold they actually found. But over all miners were a hoot.

              • karl garcia says:

                Leverage = extortion, blackmail,bribery,omerta.

  35. To condone or not to condone
    AS A MATTER OF FACT By Sara Soliven De Guzman (The Philippine Star) | Updated April 27,

    Excerpts that I find enlightening:

    “Two weeks ago, Ombudsman Morales echoed the same sentiments saying: “Given the fact that our present constitution, the 1987 Constitution is very emphatic on the drive against corruption, it calls for honesty among public officials, it calls for public accountability, then that policy should motivate the revisiting of the condonation doctrine because there is no law, no constitution that allows such doctrine, it was just based on a policy so it is only the Supreme Court which can reverse or modify it.”

    Senator Miriam Santiago in an interview said, “The first qualification for a public office should be honesty or integrity. It is wrong to equate the re-election of a public official to condonation of his past criminal offenses… The simple act of re-election alone cannot be taken to condone an elective official’s previous illegal acts since to do so would run counter to the State’s duty to maintain honesty and integrity in public office, and to keep officers accountable to the public. It also collides with the character of public office as a public trust.”

    • …….because there is no law, no constitution that allows such doctrine, it was just based on a policy so it is only the Supreme Court which can reverse or modify it”

      listen MRP, and listen well….

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        That PhilStar columnist must have been a big fan of mine. He wouldn’t have conjured a written opinion if he had not read about mine.

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        “When the people have elected a man to office, it must be assumed that they did this with knowledge of his life and character, and that they disregarded or forgave his faults or misconduct, if he had been guilty of any. It is not for the court, by reason of such faults or misconduct to practically overrule the will of the people” – SARA SOLIVEN

        Since U.P.-graduates run Philippine Media did not inform the electors “of his life and character, and that they disregarded or forgave his faults or misconduct, if he had been guilty of any.”, THEREFORE, Sereno is right to strike down the Aguinaldo Principle BECAUSE THIS PRINICIPLE IS NOT ONLY USED BY THE BINAYS BUT ALSO USED BY THE PHILIPPINE MEDIA.

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        From my analysis, Filipinos are brilliant people. It is what they read from the Philippine Media that leads them astray. It is only in the Philippine Media the voters can know who they are electing to elected offices.

        The readers vote what they have read about the candidates from the Philippine Media. THEREFORE, it is not the fault of the voters to elect Binay but the Philippine Media for not informing the electorates.

        Philippine Media is where change should begin. For the voters to vote wisely and conscientously.

        Philippine Media is afraid of blogsites. Because in blogsites is where the news are distilled, analyzed and autopsied better than in Philippine Media. Blogsites can do better because we are not conscious of our grammar and spelling. We are not afraid to be laughed at. They can even comment in their dialect. But in Philippine newspapers, English has to be impeccably perfect. Ts crossed. I’s dotted.

        “the steady stream-of-consciousness, grammar-challenged, punctuation-deprived missives exposes English-challenged Filipinos shallow, self-centered, and vacuous.” I call this absolute ENGLISH SNOBBERY.

  36. hackguhaseo says:

    Stay safe Joe! Oh, and thanks for appointing me Chief of Media Ethics! I will be taking that job, VERY SERIOUSLY…

    Anyway, on to the topic.

    “The sad irony is that, as the Philippines rises to its highest standing in history, its President falls to his lowest popularity ever. What’s with that?”

    Does anyone else think that there is a brilliant play going on here? I don’t know why, but I’m getting the feeling that strings are being pulled in increasingly obvious fashion in a desperate attempt at destroying everything the President has accomplished and wants to accomplish…

    Those who are smarter than me, please do discuss…

    • karl garcia says:

      We only have A single termer president, so bad propaganda can only affect the anointed one, so Andrew joked that Pnoy should anoint Binay so he will lose.

    • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

      Hi. Ms Maude G….good morning.

      Actually, I have commented on that earlier

      • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

        I might add that those groups are surely trying their best to turn this president into a lame duck one so his endoresed candidate will not have any chance at all….politics being the name of the game, and the nation be damned, that’s how their mind work.

      • Angry Maude says:

        Gud eve Mary Grace P. G. Went shopping for frillies today. Sorry I missed your comment ’til now. You do get around, girl . . . tee hee. I only check in now and then because Joe only wanted me to keep an eye out for one guy in particular . . .Everyone else seems on good behavior, although that MRP fellow does get my bloomers in a bunch now and then. I know Joe likes the guy’s out of the box thinking, but I find its the same box half the time. Gotta go incognito now, under cover. Hush hush . . .

    • edgar lores says:

      Is there a conspiracy? I don’t believe so. I think its a confluence of disparate elements that have more or less come together accidentally rather than intentionally from a super villain, like Dr. No, or a subversive organization, like SMERSH or SPECTRE.

      Some of the elements would be:

      o The media that encourages controversy
      o The Binay camp trying to deflect the spotlight on the family
      o Various politicians grandstanding without necessarily thinking long-term of the national welfare
      o The presidential missteps (or what are seen to be missteps)
      o A blogging community that natters negatively
      o Columnists who are too narrow and partial in their opinions
      o Nagging churches and unwise bishops
      o The troubles with the Muslim south
      o A poverty-stricken population that is too needy and too uncaring to educate or lift up itself
      o Too much concentration by individuals on peripherals like modern gadgetry, basketball and pugilistic fights

      Cha has listed some positives in parenting. There is economic growth. If someone could post positive initiatives in other areas mentioned above then perhaps we would arrive at a balanced picture and conclusively dispel the aura of conspiracy.

    • jameboy says:

      Does anyone else think that there is a brilliant play going on here? I don’t know why, but I’m getting the feeling that strings are being pulled in increasingly obvious fashion in a desperate attempt at destroying everything the President has accomplished and wants to accomplish…
      I don’t agree with the suspicion. The President made a series of wrongs steps and he deserved criticizms for it. He has all the opportunity to react and make a counter response to the criticisms to justify his decisions and weaken the other side but he chose not to do the right thing.

      Let’s call spade a spade. Not all criticisms are meant to destroy the accomplishments of the President. And I don’t think anyone can destroy the concrete and solid accomplishments of the President without resorting to lies and fabrication. I give the President the kudos he deserved from the economy to the stability his leadership brought to governance and for being the leader that cannot be tagged as corrupt. All in all he passed with flying colors.

      But that doesn’t mean we stop looking at the mistakes he has made for not doing so would just be kissing his ass. Criticisms hurt but it won’t kill the President nor his accomplishment destroyed. 👮

      • But we would like somebody to succeed him who will continue his economic programs and fight against corruption, to do that, we should not undermine his authority. Six years is not enough in order for us to have a lasting growth and corrupt free government.

        Also, mindless nitpicking tend to encourage destabilization at the expense of our tourism industry and a level playing field for business and economy’s sakes.

        I hope you understand where we are coming from.

        • jameboy says:

          PNoy’s authority can only be undermine if he will allow it. I don’t give credibility to destabilizers and nitpickers because they cannot destroy whatever the President has built and founded and spearheaded. That should be the mentality because that is the truth.

          Giving credence to threat of destruction and ruin only strengthens and emboldens those who want to hurt the President and the people. According them some sense of objectivity by defending against their offensive approach,which unfortunately only gets to look legit by the President’s bungling ways, would only be giving them some sort of legitimacy.

          I tell you, if I’m one of PNoy’s advisers, I would have been gone by now, if he’s that stupid, because unlike the ass-kissers around him, he will hear from me things he don’t want to hear not because I want to hurt him but because I want him to learn from it and not do what he thinks he wants to do but do what is the right thing to do. ☕

  37. karl garcia says:

    Industrial farming and commercial fishing are the killers of small farmers and fishers. Competition is supposed to be good.Maybe there is no fair play.Even microentrrpreneurs can not do well against Big business, small retailers can’t cut it against mall owners.
    I offer no solution,but I do ask for suggestions.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Farming is seasonal. Harvesting, too! I’d say, we go kibbutz.

    • karl & joseph,

      Here in the US, there is a movement called urban homesteading (or permaculture), where in young urbanites, many professional and/or college educated, are growing their own food.

      Whether in apartments or homes (or renting houses), they are growing vegetables, fruit trees, catching rain, plumbing for grey water, raising chicken and rabbits for food, some with access to pools, convert those pools into fish ponds.

      There’s been too many diseases here attributed to the corporate industrial food industry, that either result in cancer down the line or a quick death. So people, many scared, are now opting to grow their own food. Here’s an example:

      And with this movement, a community of like minds develop and so trade and a market develops, with people specializing. But the important point is trust, people get to see where their food comes from, and know the people that grown them.

      I think this early in the stage the Philippines can still prevent the complete industrialization of food. Your local Mom & Pop, food stall, is still a lot cheaper than say JollyBee or ChowKing. So you are not YET where we are here in the US. Not YET.

      Another effective way to fight industrialization of food is to go vegetarian, maybe just eat meat 2 or 3 times a week. Read up on healthy plants, grow them yourself and opt out of the industrial food industry. This ties in to plastic and other trash below.

      Google and watch FOOD Inc. and FRESH. Very good glimpse on where we stand here, and what’s coming there. When you guys go to the market to buy pork/fish and veggies/fruits and its dirty and loud, you guys should appreciate that compared to our clean groceries, where we don’t get to see the processing of food.

      • “I think this early in the stage the Philippines can still prevent the complete industrialization of food. Your local Mom & Pop, food stall, is still a lot cheaper than say JollyBee or ChowKing. So you are not YET where we are here in the US. Not YET.”

        We’ve been there, actually as I have narrated in my previous anecdotes. Unfortunately, the youth today are being influenced by various ads on TV, or succumbs to peer pressure to eat in these fast food chains and the parents are too uncaring or uninformed that these kinds of foods are quite unhealthy.

        In my time, we eat what is placed on the table and if we don’t care for them, the alternative is to go hungry.

        We try to go vegetarian but as we did found out the saying “healthy foods taste like shit” to be somewhat true. Time to go back to growing our own vegies, eat them while fresh.. grow our own livestock and try fish culture in our makeshift backyard fishpond.

        • As for vegetarianism, I love Vietnamese, Thai, Korean and Japanese food for their healthy dishes. But Filipino food not so much, Filipino food has a tendency to be really greasy, even their soups.

          So from the git go the Filipino culinary scene is already unhealthy, IMHO, when I was there I noticed the culinary culture wasn’t as sophisticated when compared to Vietnam or Thailand or Japan. Don’t get me wrong, it was good, but when speaking about taste and health, the Filipino culinary experience is still very Spanish and not Asian.

          That will impact the success of a vegetarian culture there, vegetarianism is endemic to Asia, but somehow the Philippines missed out.

          There was also an apologetic sense when Filipinos served us vegetables, they equated to economic status, I loved with when they served veggies, especially after eating pork almost every day–drink beer, you eat pork; some sort of celebration, a whole pig; more party, more pork again. It was endless.

          Be unapologetic for veggies. Fresh vegetables straight from the yard is a luxury you can’t compare even to the best restaurants.

          • Haha… That’s why I declined an invitation for a family reunion / birthday celebration of a cousin who sponsored it, although I can take a leave from the office. Aside from the sweltering heat, the thought of eating pork the whole day was already making me nauseous and dizzy, but would probably partake of it to avoid offending the host. Anyway, we already had a Christmas reunion last December and I was the lone sponsor.

            I stayed in the air conditioned office the whole day, and I enjoyed my home cooked boiled vegies and fish.

      • karl garcia says:

        Vertical farming,indoor farming, vacant lot farming can happen and is happening.

        • karl, Mary,

          Do you have examples of permaculture, vertical farming, indoor farming in the Philippines, in big cities like Manila, Cebu, etc.?

          When I was there most guys I met knew how to butcher a pig, chicken, goat, and how to prepare seafood with just vinegar. Most Americans just put food (not knowing if it is in fact food, mostly it’s just hydrogenated, corn syrup, that shouldn’t be fit for human consumption) they just put food in their mouths, not knowing the supply chain, process, chemicals it went thru.

          So I think an ad campaign whether to ridicule, inform or scare, or something more subtle like a Nudge, I think that would have impact there still, just make it American looking, Filipinos love American stuff, they are already primed–just focus on this part of current American culture and away from consumerism.

          • @ LCpl_X

            Sorry, no idea at all being stuck here at the office, most of the time monitoring compliance on BIR deadlines which are never ending.

            My scant idea came from my parents some years ago and from stories they are recounting before my college days and our migration to the city. Been reading up a little on FB links re indoor gardening, and now vertical farming considering that what we have is just around 800 sqm lot recently purchased from a cousin.

            The one we inherited from our maternal grandparents are planted with mahogany trees.

          • karl garcia says:

            there are proposals. in congress, housebill 720 is a bill institutionalizing urban agriculture.

          • karl garcia says:

            Proponent In Senate is Lito Lapid, sbn 2095 for 16th congress


    • So if you can convince the demand to grow their own food, then you can as easily convince them to patronize small farmers and fishermen.

      Here’s FOOD Inc.

      Here’s FRESH

    • Small retailers can group themselves together and secure even a relatively small area within the mall to continue their trade. If they can’t lick ’em, join ’em. Consumers do prefer the air-conditioned malls than the small and humid stores.

  38. karl garcia says:

    Question on segregation of garbage, does it work on tall buildings,hospitals….does it work at all,the garbage truck has no dividers,they end up mixed up again. Any suggestions?

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      I didn’t see that coming! Good observation. We separate the recycleables from others and when they come around to pick-up the trash, they mix them up in one huge garbage compactor. Isn’t that weird?

      In my country, Waste Management Company, makes money out of recyclables. We have cities that outlawed shopping-cart pushers trolling for recycleables because they are competing with Waste Management.

      Waste Management does not dump their trash wantonly. They go to several steps. It is dump in a hanger-like warehouse where employees sort out further that can be recycled.

      Of course, if there is nothing to recycle at Payatas, where will those dumpster-diving hungry children get their next meal?

      • karl garcia says:

        Thanks MRP, here the karitons still go door to door in some areas to sell to junk shops.Others go to the garbage dumps.Some steal manholes,copper wires ,railroad tracks all to be exported to China.
        I wated to comment in tea milk, why would we be scared to buy food and beverage from stores if we are not scared of street food like squid balls,isaw,betamax,quekwuek sago gulaman,ice snow cone,taho,etc.

        We see people survive from leftovers from Mickey D, then be scared of milk tea????

      • jameboy says:

        “In my country…….” – Mariano R. P.
        Yes, tell us more about the riot and lootings in Baltimore. The rampant graft and corruption and stupid leaders that you occasionally put in office. The regular killings of African-American in the hands of the police force. Don’t forget also to narrate to us how one of your presidents got his blow job service right there in your White House. Of course, I will expect you to also tell the stories of the growing number of homeless people and homelessness in “your country”. What else? Yes, the domestic terrorists in your midst that from time to time show its ugly head to jolt you and remind you that you are not perfect.

        You see, “your country” is really not different from other countries regarding social problems and political corruption and twisted morality. Bragging about “your country” is an immature act. It’s shameful and very condescending.

        Lastly, it’s maybe “your country” where you are a second class citizen. Your are a Pinoy pony masquerading as an American stallion. Manoy, kahit ano pa ang sabihin mo, hindi ka pupuwede sa Kentucky derby.

        Pang-karitela ka lang. And I’m being honest and truthful about it. 👷

        • One thing about homelessness here that you’ll never see is that picture of kids eating rice in the streets with their mother. Children, families with children, get priority with resources.

          As for homelessness in general, most homeless actually have beds in shelters for them. They opt not to because of the crime inside these shelters, or they don’t like rules prefer to stay outside. But the resource is there, and some shelters are better than others. That’s a totally different story from not having resources at all.

        • And for Blacks killed by police officers, the statistics (along with general homicide rates in the nation) is actually on the decline than on the rise.

          So much of this coverage is a result of social media, ie. more people with videos, once posted people get a skewed sense of trends. The bigger issue though is over-militarization of the police.

          Not so much the killings (which, except for 2 videos I’ve seen, have been all justified, or at least satisfactorily explained), but what worries me when I watch the footage of Baltimore (I was a big fan of HBO’s “the Wire”) are all the military vehicles and equipment they have.

          But the thing about riots and America is that this is normal here, from the Tea Party to the gangs of NYC in the 1850s to now. A society that doesn’t riot is actually more problematic and symptomatic of greater societal fear.

          When was the last time the Philippines, either Cebu or Manila, or other bigger cities, rioted?

          • “A society that doesn’t riot is actually more problematic and symptomatic of greater societal fear.”

            Greater societal fear, for me, is preferable to violent riot. No, that is something we don’t want happening here, even it is normal in the US.

            We would like to believe that we resolve our political and social issues by peaceful demonstrations much like our people power revolutions. Riots belong to violent people or, the groups advocating violence, like the left leaning groups, the coup artists, NPA and BFF rebels.

            • er, even if it is normal in the US… now I know , eating boiled corn while typing is not advisable…

            • But, Mary, you guys already have violence as part of your society’s fabric there.

              I remember seeing an accident (already happened) where the driver and his assistant were severely beaten having caused the accident. Burglars and thieves, I’ve seen mobs beat them to a pulp. I’ve seen rumbles involving knives and bbq sticks. So the violence is there.

              Societal fear is this. I was walking thru a tiny street in a big city there with a Filipino colleague and out of nowhere, a nice looking car, tinted windows, obviously drunk, barrels down the street almost hitting us. I was just about to throw a bottle at the car, when my friend stopped me,

              and told me that this was so-and-so’s son. My reaction was who cares, he almost hit us–not the most well thought out reaction I admit. But it was this sense that because the driver was so-and-so’s sone, hence he gets away with driving like an imbecile. Kinda like Saddam Hussein’s two idiot sons.

              So I’m equating the lack of violent riots there to fear. You guys accept violence like rumbles, but violence directed towards power and powerful individuals is a big NO. The issue isn’t so much resolution thru peace, but where violence is accepted in Philippine society.

              That’s societal fear.

          • jameboy says:

            When was the last time the Philippines, either Cebu or Manila, or other bigger cities, rioted?
            If you think those People Power series that changed leadership are not a riots and just an outing, I don’t blame you. But hey, it did make changes (not necessarily for the better) compared to the noises and whining and destructions in Ferguson, Baltimore, etc.

            Lastly,the lootings and burnings from a country we looked up as our betters is just terrible.

            I wonder what Manoy can say to that as a defense for a perfect colonizer. 🙂

            • jameboy,

              Every riot results in some sort of adjustment. For example, in Ferguson a pattern of disproportionate policing towards Blacks by a 95% White police force was uncovered. The Justice Dept. stepped in. In Baltimore, that city is black majority, so is their police department. I have a feeling what will get uncovered is local gov’t corruption by local Black politicians, complicit in overall city affairs.

              LA riots and the riots in Seattle, resulted in better crowd control tactics, hence less protests gone awry in the West Coast lately, if you notice in the news. Also from the LA riots, there is more collaboration between Black leaders and the police, and this was replicated up and down the West Coast. So there are verifiable results from these riots.

              I agree with you that violence isn’t the best way to express all this, but my point is that it’s in America’s DNA from the beginning, people here are generally suspicious of the gov’t and any time they sense tyranny, they will take to the streets, it’s always been done like this.

              No matter how violent, there is a trajectory of progress. My only criticism is that people don’t riot for more abstract (unseen) problems like Monsanto’s tampering with food source, like oil companies fracking, etc. This was what the Seattle riots were all about, but there’s less of these types of riots. Which I think affects more people.

              And I have to disagree with you on the People Power “outings”, from my estimation you guys have just exchanged certain personalities with other similar personalities, there isn’t real institutional changes. There’s a big difference between govts based on people and govts based on institutions. This is where the whole concept of societal fear plays a big role.

              p.s.~ as for your disagreement with MRP, I agree with you, but absent of a moderator here we have to manage clutter and direct comments (no matter how asinine) into actionable solutions or at least fruitful discussions since that’s the spirit of Joe’s last article.

              So I agree with you, I just want this thread to be without clutter. So whatever he posts, convert it to something productive. Focus on the big picture here.

              • jameboy says:

                So whatever he posts, convert it to something productive. Focus on the big picture here.
                If that is the only option you have on those garbage, go ahead, ‘convert’ the garbage into something productive. Just a reminder, those garbage are intended to insult and not to engage in serious and formal discussion.

                I’m here not to baby-sit or explain for someone whose intention is to degrade and ridicule others he sees as inferior to him.

                You like his style you think there is something relevant and sensible there, good for you. Me, I’ll just opt to take a nap. 🚶

              • A wise decision.

              • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

                Please tell me more about fracking….I thought it was a good method of extracting oil and that it made the US self sufficient in oil…does it damage the environment?

        • Take it easy, jameboy… ang puso mo…

          • jameboy says:

            Mary G.P.G.,
            Lol! Good thing I’m not obese! 😉

            Don’t worry about me I’m fine. What we should worry about is the garbage-in, garbage-out information that gets to see the light of day on this blog and even converts some nice people as believers on something lame as “US and me are perfect, Pinoys and all of them are nothing” style of conversation.

            The thought send shivers down my spine. 🚑

        • jameboy says:

          USA! USA! USA! 😎

          That’s the defense and I understand it. I too, like the US but unlike Manoy I will never use her to put down another country much less mine.

          I’m not into crassness, guys. ⛔

    • In our subdivision, there are days assigned for garbage collection – Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays are for biodegradable garbage, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays are for non biodegradable. Sundays are for e-wastes.

      We are not supposed to take our garbage until the collecting trucks are already in our respective streets mindful of stray dogs and squatters who mindlessly scatter them all over the area.

      Our subdivision is relatively garbage free as we strictly follow the rules, but the public streets are another matter, scattered trash are clogging the drainage system and causing the endless floods in their area.

  39. karl garcia says:

    Plastic waste in esteros,our waters,every where. recycling them to furniture can only go as far.We need incineration,plastic to fuel,waste to energy.

    Is there a technology to extract gold,etc. From e-waste? We could be rich ftom the trash.

    • karl,

      Here in the U.S. estuaries and inlets have become protected land, either at the local, state or federal level (National Seashores under the National Parks Service). Back in the 60s and 70s these rivers and estuaries were where as polluted (maybe more, because of toxicity not just from garbage).

      Is there an EPA or other local govt equivalents that protect public lands there? And how effective are they, or can they be bought just as easily as other govt agencies there?

      As for plastic, I saw these two documentaries recently, Addicted to Plastic and Plastic Paradise, and . The best would be to stop plastic all together, so again education is important. Maybe get oncologists over there involved in these campaigns with videos and pictures of cancer patients.

    • * rivers and estuaries were as polluted (maybe more…

      It’s always difficult when choosing between convenience and the environment. I used to smoke 2 packs a day, I stopped. I stopped because cigarettes became too expensive, because of state taxes designed and justified as off-set to govt costs from health care resulting from smoking–so, that’s where the gov’t can make a difference.

      Also, because of a serious marketing campaign to both inform, ridicule and scare smokers and non-smokers alike, it’s become socially unacceptable. The cool-ness factor went out the window and replaced with public outcry. Check this video out:

      So when it comes to environmental concerns, as exampled by anti-tobacco, environmental protection here in the US, you can in fact curb social behaviour. Tax bad behaviour, both de jure and de facto.

    • yep, as they say, may pera sa basura.

      Discipline, discipline… where art thou in the squatter’s area?

      The squatters are polluting the water tributaries which in turn cause floods, they will be rescued by the government, to be fed, attend to their medical needs in various evacuation centers.

      They are voters being babied by politicians at the expense of taxes paid by the middlemen, as the rich know how to evade paying them. Employed middlemen have their taxes deducted already so they have no choice.

  40. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Los Angeles Area Filipino scammers par excellance:

    Read it here:

  41. jameboy says:

    From my analysis, Filipinos are brilliant people. It is what they read from the Philippine Media that leads them astray. It is only in the Philippine Media the voters can know who they are electing to elected offices.

    Philippine Media is where change should begin. For the voters to vote wisely and conscientously. – Mariano Renato Pacifico
    So, it’s all media’s fault. Erap should not have been convicted nor Gloria arrested. Napoles should not have been charged nor Corona removed. Jinggoy, Enrile and Bong should be allowed to walk and work back in the Senate. The MILF should be embraced and the BBL approved because, you see, nothing’s wrong with us.

    The 44 PNP-SAF? They were killed by the media. Forget about them.

    Let’s all kill all the journalists and media people because it’s all their fault. Like what Manoy is saying it’s media’s fault. The present and the future of this country depends on what the media does. Corruption? No such thing. Let’s investigate media instead.

    Pres. Aquino is a dummy. He’s nothing. His almost six years in service as president is chicken shit. You know why? The media is the key. Without media this country is nothing.

    Chicken shit. Yes. And surprise, somebody tasted it and actually like it. 😎

    • “A popular Government without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy, or perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance: And a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.” James Madison

      “No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is, therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions.” Thomas Jefferson

      I’m with MRP here. He’s not faulting the press for being the press. He’s faulting them for not doing what they are supposed to be doing.

      But in fairness to the press in the Philippines, there is much to fear. The principle has already been outlined above by the originals that started this experiment. Fear is another problem all together, BUT the

      point is that the press is derelict, period. Everyone should be able to agree on that. Here’s the purpose simplified further…

      “Some lawyers in defending their clients, (for the generality of lawyers, like Swiss soldiers, will fight on either side,) have often given their opinion of what they defined the liberty of the press to be. One said it was this, another said it was that, and so on, according to the case they were pleading. Now these men ought to have known that the term liberty of the press arose from a FACT, the abolition of the office of Imprimateur, and that opinion has nothing to do in the case. The term refers to the fact of printing free from prior restraint, and not at all to the matter printed, whether good or bad. The public at large or in case of prosecution, a jury of the county–will be the judges of the matter.” Thomas Paine

      • jameboy says:

        I don’t agree with somebody who looks upon everybody as inferior to him. Why? Manoy is a fool to speak that his life is “like heaven” than the Filipinos. And that was so because he “surrendered” with the former colonizer!

        That’s like saying he is better than us because has lots of money for prostituting himself! And you’re with him on that? Fine.

        I based what I said on what I read here and what I’m reading with Manoy was, irrespective of the issues or reason or logic, Filipinos will get nothing in this world because their country, his country of birth, is not perfect compared to his adopted country and former colonizer, the USA.

        That is the bottom line of every single post he put up here. I’m just calling spade a spade. if one wants an honest to goodness conversation I think one should start with being formal, honest, objective and fair. I’m not one to cheery-pick and pick a “pagpag” in a file of garbage and pronounce it kosher just to have a discussion. Nope, sir.

        He chose to have a one-way conversation by just speaking and listening to him self with those I-praise-my-life-like-heaven statement, hence, a one-way conversation it will be.

        Now, on your statement that you formulated based on what you read from Manoy, let me comment on it.

        “BUT the point is that the press is derelict, period. Everyone should be able to agree on that.”

        Nope, sorry. That is NOT the point and I do not agree on that defensive statement. You are skipping the true story. The point is, just like everybody else, the press or media has its own fault. For one to say that it’s all media’s fault would be practically immunizing the rest for what ails the government. The press/media has done its part in so far as an instrument of good and transparent governance the Aquino administration has espoused since day one. That’s the real story and that is what we ALL SHOULD agree on.

        Nobody was saying the media is to blame when Pres. Aquino was hugging the headlines and his popularity was soaring. Even the Binay’s nor Gloria’s camp were never heard casting and heaping blame against the media for PNoy’s enormous popularity and public support.

        But the moment when they pointed out, through the Emperor-has-no-clothes theory, the President’s actions based on the wrong steps that led to erosion of his popularity they started to get all the blame.

        Nice. 😎

    • Factual reporting as opposed to slanted news reporting is what we desire from our mainstream media. I’d rather form my own opinion from events as they happen, thank you. If we want other’s opinion we go to their editorials and columnist which is ok, we have the choice on who to believe and to ignore.

      Reports on the shenanigans of Napoles in connivance with the Senator plunderers were factual, supported by COA’s report – those were excellent.

      What we do not want, as Joe has pointed out in his previous blog articles, are slants and opinions presented as “news” which are influencing the readers and viewers opinions.

      There’s a whole lot of difference.

      • jameboy says:

        Factual reporting as opposed to slanted news reporting is what we desire from our mainstream media. I’d rather form my own opinion from events as they happen, thank you.
        But factual on whose or what standard?

        Was it factual because the news said what you want to read/hear? Was it slanted because it disappointed your biased expectation? That’s the problem. Factual based on your opinion of events? That’s another problem especially when you lean on your own prejudice or preconception in understanding what you read.

        Media and news reporting cannot be just a one-way thing because there are a lot of them. Obviously, not every one of them will slant and lie about a story. You choose what you like, believe and trust on and read them. But just because you read a story from a source and not like the report you will blame the whole industry already?

        That’s practically throwing out the baby with the bath water. Not good. 😦

        • OK, jameboy, I’ll posit you this question, what publication there, in your estimation, epitomizes the ideal of objectivity and diligence in the press? One that doesn’t provide a mouth piece for this and that party or person, but just reports the news.

          Here although there’s a market also for bleacher-thinking news (yaay!!! for us, booo!! for them), like MSNBC and FOX News, there are plenty of news source that cater to objectivity and diligence, Financial Times and the Economist are widely available, public libraries all have them.

          Foreign Affairs and Washington Quarterly gets in depth. So here the press holds itself to higher standards, so which publications over there, match these standards?

          I noticed the way Filipinos consume news was akin to telenovelas, they didn’t express bigger concepts, they viewed the news more or less as sources for gossip. The way Filipinos talked about the news was gossipy in nature. So the demand for better news is directly related. A more discerning readership equals better news sources.

          • jameboy says:

            Instead of asking self-serving questions you lay the predicates why you think Philippine press sucks. Your question asks for perfection. I can tell you this or that publication does its work and publish the news as they are and you will still criticize it because you are looking for something to criticize no matter what.

            Those who complains about media/press should be saying the reason/s why they’re complaining. As for me, I read the news and discern and determine for myself if there are doubts to the veracity of what’s being reported. Otherwise, I just read them for updates and info. I don’t rely on media to spoon-feed me the truth. It’s fine of I get the facts or non-facts or whatever. In this time and age there are a lot of means to confirm, verify, etc. info you think needs validation. If there are patterns of inconsistencies with certain publication, you switch, there are other outlets of info including those in the internet.

            Bottom line, I just don’t buy the idea of blaming the media for biases or slants because there is nothing out there that is pure white and lie-proof. If there is corruption, abuses or undue preference on the part of media, let’s call it, but we cannot just throw everything at them because we do not like what they report about certain individuals.

            And we have laws to address any media or press abuses aside from the existence of government-owned and operated media outlets to counter balance the mainstream media outputs.

            Your opinion about the Filipino consumption of news like telenovelas or gossip is way out of line and contradictory. Obviously, you have no idea of how some news are presented in this part of the world in various ways. Although I do not blame you on that I just wonder why you seem to be not familiar with the kinds of news presentation when you too have lots of scandal sheets, gossip channels, etc. there. 👀

            • Not perfection, but simple due diligence. And quality of reporting.

              Can you confirm and verify news regarding corruption and criminal activities, unless youre privy to this, thru contacts or from work, I doubt your claim. For example in Ms. Veloso’s case you think the press will uncover much? How far do you think they’ll go, until they say, ooops that’s too far.

              Don’t blame the media for everything, that’s not what I’m saying, but hold them to a higher standard.

              As for media over here, you’re right, but if you tally up the sensational, gossip media against respectable media, there will be more of the last than the sensational.

              I’ll grant you that I had a small sample size, I wasn’t among the brightest or most-educated,

              but from my perspective, most Filipinos ( I came across ) have a certain way of reading the news (telenovelas) and a certain way of processing the news (gossip), not all too discerning.

              The last point we can disagree, since we’re basing our points on personal perspectives, but the point about demanding more from your media should be understood–hence my confusion as to your stance here, jameboy, are you not for a better media?

              When it comes to the press, there’s always room for improvement, always.

              • jameboy says:

                The quality of reporting is just like everywhere else. There’s good and the not so good. But I really don’t pay too much attention on the presentation of the news. All I care for is the news, the information, the updates, the events, etc., the works.

                Ms. Veloso’s case is a done deal. We’re just lucky that PNoy was able to convince the Indonesian leader to give us a chance and more time to prove Ms. Veloso don’t deserve to be executed. The media has been very accommodating in the effort to create noises about it and have been very active in elaborating and repeating over and over again the events and facts that led to Ms. Veloso’s capture and conviction. I cannot ask for more about media’s coverage of the case.

                Am I not for better media? Who don’t want something better? However, ‘better media’ is not an immediate concern for me because there are more important matters that we should be talking about instead of suspicion about media.

                To put it more bluntly, I choose the papers I read, the news that I watch and the program that I listened to. If I see something wrong, I just switch channels or read other papers and compare them and then make my own conclusion/decision.

                I do that because I’m aware that I simply cannot rely on media to always tell me the truth or get accurate facts every time. Yellow journalism is a fact of life. I wish media is perfect but it isn’t. One day I might complain against media but for now I don’t see anything that merits even a wimp of a complain against media. 📝

              • I see, priorities will differ. But as those quotes I posted above from our American Founding Fathers explain–and like it or not the Philippines is formed in the image of America–the press plays a crucial, a crucial, part in Democracy.

                I can appreciate that more discerning news consumers such as yourself can access a variety of news sources, many non-Filipino for quality, but my point about Ms. Veloso is on in-depth, investigative journalism to give us more info on the supply chain of the drug group Ms. Veloso was caught up in.

                The human interest story is great for telenovelas, but hard nose, gum shoe, investigative reporting, something no non-Filipino news source can pursue, is something Philippine journalists should aspire to, there’s way too much human interest stories with all the crying and praying, and other none sense.

        • @ jameboy…

          Obviously, you did not get my point. Does a fact and an event have to have anybody’s standard?… Something happened, period, you report what, when, where ,who…but you don’t have to add ..why because in doing so you are presenting your own opinion as “news”.

          You said you read, and if you don’t believe what you read, you move on to the another source which you find more credible…but most readers do not have your ability to discern what is slanted news and that’s what we are saying…people are influenced by the this kind of news reporting. Others just glance at headlines (like MRP) and then go ahead and rant based on the headline without reading the whole story, and even the rest of the news story contain the reporters’ opinion on that particular news item.

          I repeat, if a reporter wants to offer his opinion, write it in the opinion column, don’t present your opinion as “news”. – that’s a slanted news, and misleading at that.

          • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

            I do glance at the headlines, like all Filipino telenovelas, they have the same body of news: Battle of Witnesses, Battle of Affidavits, tit-for-tat, news not vetted, journalists did not interview the other side

            But in Joe’s case, I have to read it thru-and-thru from start-to-finish.

            Philippine news is predictable. It is all he-said-she-said no evidence necessary. I am just wondering why Filipinos fall for it. Why can’t they ask Philippine Media for evidence before they publish it.

            If there is no evidence, it is just mere innuendoes, intrigue and gossips.

          • Of course I don’t mind interviews done on news sites…that’s a different matter. What I object to is when a reporter inserts his own take on the news being reported as what is being done lately by inquirer and most of the time, by Noli de Castro and Ted Failon.

          • jameboy says:


            Yes, there has to be standard. That is the reason why you are complaining of slant or adding opinion in the news. It’s not up to standard. The only question is whose standard? Okay, let’s say it’s the standard of professionalism or code of ethics or what have you. That is completely possible because those are the guides for people to abide with in their pursuit of their profession. However, it is not enough basis for a complaint of not doing the job right. You have to have proof that there is clear abuse or malice or machinations or intent to injure or hurt the public by the way the news was presented.

            News must be straightforward, I agree, but times have changed and we have to accept that. Nowadays, there are news within a news. Why so? Because there is too much information; too much sources and too much people knowing too much information. You can still get straightforward reporting of news if you want to because that is the standard that is still practiced up to now. Something happened and it was reported, then the news reporter will move on to the next news. We still see that kind of presenting news.

            I think most people who are after information do what I do. Get the information. Agree or disagree or ignore with what the reporter think what the news is. Most readers have the capability to discern the question is, with their own biases and prejudices, will they be able to control themselves not to inject such bias and prejudice in what they read. If they can, like me, they will most likely get the basic facts and ignore the rest. That’s what we’re after, to be updated with the happenings around us.

            But if they agree or disagree, they’ll most probably argue and complain or justify the opinion of the reporter.

            Bottom line, we have a free press. If you (not actually you) are the kind that gets influenced easily, it’s your lookout. Only you can protect your self against the deluge of information that comes your way. But that is not to say that media is immune to responsibility. Of course, if there is proof of shenanigans and wrongdoings they have to be taken to account and hold liable for such violation. 👮

            • I repeat, information of a certain event or happening, the bare facts sans any reporter’s take on it.

              I’m also not talking about it’s effect on myself but on some of our countrymen who have no time or inclination to search and verify the slant on a certain news item like what you and me are doing to the extent that they are eadily influenced – it’s precisely my point. I cannot say, fine, it’s their own lookout, i care too much just to leave it at that. People easily inflluenced make wrong decisions, exactly what evil minded people would like to happen, hence this slanted way of publishing news or airing them in TV Patrol…aimed at projecting their preferred candidates….We cannot expect everyone to be as intelligent as you…unworthy politicians get elected courtesy of the masa uninformed, easily influenced voters. Dig?

              • jameboy says:

                I understand your concern but I don’t think we have to assume that those slanted news gets to influenced people to make dumb decision. “Caring too much” simply won’t fly because it would only actually dumb down people aside from showing distrust in their capability to discern and relate to issues around them.

                Unworthy politicians do not get elected because people are uninformed. I don’t buy it. They get elected because they either cheat or popular or both.

                Contrary to popular beliefs, our electorate knows what they’re doing. They are not uninformed. They may have been influenced, which happens everywhere, but they know what they do.

                Mary, why don’t you just identify those you think are guilty of wrongdoing and focus on them. Are you not doing that because you think you don’t have a case? Media is not perfect but we simply cannot condemn all the media people for the faults of some. 👲

              • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

                The way TV Patrol reported PNoy’s instruction to Roxas to be careful and not tell everything to the media re Mamapasano intel. The reporter stopped at the point “everything to the media” without completing the phrase. That was what I call slanted news reporting, either by withholding words that will completely change what the president is saying, and then implying that he is not being honest with his bosses…or adding his own take on the report he is airing. We all know that every chief executive has confidential intel which he cannot divulge to every Tom, Dick and Harry.

                Please review JoeAm’s blog article on rappler wherein he ably demonstrated how a reporter’ own opinion on a certain item which was presented as news. This ipad is still new to me, I can’t search another website using another tab, so I find it dificult to make a specific reporter’s name, i’m writing from memory, but I know you get my drift, you are not dense, or don’t you notice some news items in the inquirer which contained the slanted news?

                Anyway, we are talking in full circles here with you defending the media’s right of free expression, and me saying go ahead, express it to their heart’s content but do it in the opinion column or in a blog, just don’t present them as news. IT’s as simple as that.

                Let’s just say you have your own idea on this matter, if you’re not conviced with mine as I’m not with yours, let’s leave it at that, as it is, the bone is completely gnawed so to speak.

              • jameboy says:

                I’m not defending media I just don’t agree with the notion that media should be blame for the faults of a few. Now that you identified the source of your complaint the discussion now will veer away from the media as a whole and focus on the actual culprits.

                I cannot comment on the PNoy-Roxas news for I did not see it. All I can comment on is your obvious repulsion against slanted reporting. And you feel that way because the personalities involved in the ‘slanted’ news happens to be close to your heart, meaning, you are pro rather than an anti PNoy. Alright, I get it.

                You could have said it at the outset instead of making general statements against media. Anyway, like I said if you think TV Patrol is out to get PNoy with those slanted news don’t watch it. Switch to other channels.

                And in case the pro-Binay will complain against media for the same reason in not treating their idols rights, I’ll also say the same: don’t patronize those who hurts you.

                Go watch or read those that you trust will give you the right news and information. 📝

            • There it is again, that hateful labeling….For the nth time, I’m for stabilty and progress, am quite protective of what gains this administration, (and for that matter, any administration) has in the economic front, as well as the ant-corruption efforts and want it to continue beyond PNOY’s term I so hate labels, it is so divisive. And to think I did not even vote for this President. I voted for someone else.

              I don’t watch TV Patrol any more but I have to read the news and the inquirer and rappler and sometimes philstar, as compared to tribune, and others, are a little bit acceptable. Where else can I get the NEWS and be updated with current EVENTS? And taliking about inquirer, I am quite aghast at its penchant to include Doronilla’s column in the front page among the headlines…..grrrrr! As i have mentioned before, my eyes are automatically speed reading, so my morning igood humor is gone with wind in those instances.

              • jameboy says:

                Hateful labeling? Let’s be honest you don’t need to attack the media to protect whatever it is you are protecting. TV Patrol can never do damage to the gains of this administration by slanting news. It doran’t matter if you are pro or anti. What matters is the issue you are raising. 🗿

              • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

                Awwwwrrr….you do contradict yourself. You say:

                All I can comment on is your obvious repulsion against slanted reporting. And you feel that way because the personalities involved in the ‘slanted’ news happens to be close to your heart, meaning, you are pro rather than an anti PNoy. Alright, I get it.

                You labeled me pro Pnoy because I find slanted news repulsive, and when I clarified where I stand, then you go ahead and say it does not matter whether I’m pro or anti….my head is whirling trying to understand you.

                You keep saying there has to be a standard in news reporting and asks whose standard, mine, yours, or whoever. I counter what has standard to do with reporting an event…it happened, it occured, report it as truthfully as possible without INSERTING YOUR OWN OPINION and presenting it as NEWS.

                I need NEWS, not the reporters’ opinion of them…that is slanted news, editorialized news, opinionated news.

                In any case, I did say I find inquirer’s well researched report on Napoles’ shenanigans with the connivance and partipation of the now detained and alleged plunderers as well as their coverage on Corona’s impeachment trial and the media’s expose of Erap’s corruption which are factual, supported by pictures and COA reports. I find the investigative reports of Marites Vitug and before her, Eugene Apostol of the Mr. and Ms fame. Those I can appreciate, but not today’s new breed of reporters who submit day to day news that are slanted. How they progress, or should i say degress into that style now beats me, must be because election is just around the corner. Politics as usual.

                This will be my last post on this matter of my repulsion to slanted news. I think I have said enough, if you are not convinced, then so be it. This discussion has dragged long enough and I see end of it the way you twist every argument I make.

              • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

                Er, I see NO end

              • jameboy says:

                I think you are not being honest in the discussion by not even covering your tracks of where you’re coming from and worse implying that you are not taking sides when the truth is that you do. It’s very clear in all your posts that you don’t like certain personalities/sources slanting their news against the President. I’m just calling you out not to blame the whole industry for the fault of some. Are you going to deny that?

                What’s wrong in calling you a pro-PNoy? I am called pro-PNoy a number of times and I don’t take offense. I don’t see it as labeling me because I happened to be pro-PNoy in most cases. And even of I’m not it’s not about labeling it’s about what you are saying and how you defend it if challenged. You used the word “label” as if there is something sinister or evil in being in pro or in favor of something or someone. You can be a pro or anti for all I care just don’t resort to condemning the whole industry for the mistakes of some of its members.

                Why not be honest and defend what you think is right? Don’t beat around the bush and hide behind the people, the uninformed voters, the gains of this administration, etc. Mary, you are not angry because of those, you are angry because some slant their news against the President. AND YOU ARE PERFECTLY ALRIGHT IN SAYING THAT. All I did was to disagree with you and say that NOT ALL media, as you insinuated, are guilty of what you are alleging. Actually, to show that my view about blaming everything to the media must apply to all, pro or against, I even mentioned the pro-Binay camp.

                You need news and not opinion or slanted news? Change channels or get another paper. Better still get the news and ignore the opinion or slanted view. Is that hard to do?

                Lastly, you don’t have to convince me, that’ not the issue nor the labeling, you just have to be honest for nothing is wrong in being truthful. 🌜

              • No longer on the slanted news issue… so now I am a liar as well as dishonest…. weeeeelllll… thank you very much.

              • jameboy says:

                Mary there’s no point in quarreling and I’m not quarreling with you. I merely disagree with your generalization against media. In fact, I believe and you proved it, that not all media are guilty by identifying those whom you think are guilty of wrongdoing.

                But you brought up the “hateful labeling” just because I said you are pro-PNoy. I don’t know what is hateful in supporting a popular leader. And ‘hateful labeling’ is like, for example, I called you ‘Mary the mother of insincerity’ or ‘Mary A Nazi Coddler Lady’ or words that meant to demean your person. Saying you are pro or anti (political party) is not hateful labeling. It’s a fact and if in case I was wrong you can say I’m wrong or guessing but surely I’m not doing a ‘hateful labeling’.

                Now, here’s another issue again about lying. Not being honest does not automatically mean you are lying. Lying is making up or inventing stories. Not being honest is denying or not admitting a fact. Those are two different things and I think you are not being honest about your true feelings on your reason against the issue of slanting news. I only mentioned about being honest because you seem to be embarrass to be known as a supporter of the President. Why deny it? Nothing’s wrong with it and your apparent act of defending the President is proper. Why don’t you want to admit it? Why not be honest about it? That’s merely my point.

                We’re still with the slanted news issue, only thing was we established where you’re coming from, which is a non-issue, and why I think we should not be blaming the media for the wrongs of a few of its members.

                Since you identified the target of your complaint, which is what I suggested that you do, the issue is now moot. You can now criticize those culprits who did the slanting and you’ll never hear from me again on that issue.✌

  42. jameboy says:

    Talking about food, how many here have seen those Americans with biiiiiiiiiig and faaaat assess!?

    Yeah, the food there and the style of eating, preparation, etc. maybe incomparable and the Philippines maybe a million mile down there when it comes to that but, hey, I’ve never seen so many fat and obese people walking around drooling for more food.

    Terrible, just terrible! 😦

    • Obesity is the result of ignorance about one’s food source. Children with diabetes, or infant diabetes, mostly due to high fructose corn syrup, is at epidemic levels. Here’s a good informative video:

      There’s obesity there too, but limited to the rich. In time, if the Philippines decides to opt for the corporate industrialized food idea, which is already fast becoming the norm there, then there will be more issues with diabetes especially among children.

      The truth of the American obesity problem is that more and more children are dying from diabetes, heart disease and other ailments related to unhealthy “food”.

      The irony is the majority of those who suffer from obesity are poor people, who’d rather buy $1 burger, than prepare veggies and fruits a lot more expensive than that burger. Counter-intuitively, the problem is also economic.

    • And we have those fat and obese people , too, here if we are honest. And talking about being honest, let’s face it, we are truly a nation of pork eaters, whether we admit it or not… Acknowledging our own weakness is one step towards correcting it.

      • that is, except our muslim brothers, hehe

      • I remember the times when we were still in our province. A majority of us will raise a pig each, months before fiesta day. We simultaneously butchered them and then from the 100 kilo pork, out come pork adobo, pork menudo, pork higado, pork estupado, pork kilawin, pork tocino, pork longanisa, pork mitsado, pork dinuguan, pork pochero, pork kaldereta, pork lechon kawali, pork crispy pata, (there are more, the names escape me at the moment.)…then we lined them up in the buffet table and waited for arriving guests to enjoy the feast, the irony there is that we were poor the rest of the year.

        I liked it best when during the rest of the year we were back to eating our home grown veggies and fresh fish peddled by our neighboring lake shore barrio. (Except when a pig had to be butchered again when I graduated top of the class….mediocre public schools lang naman – humor me there, guys.) I miss this fish – tawilis and biya the latter ginataan in coconut milk kakang gata.

        When we became born again Christian, we stopped participating in fiestas.

    • So much for not being crass, jameboy.

  43. jameboy says:

    “From my analysis, Filipinos are brilliant people.” – Mariano Renato Pacifico

    If Filipinos wanted to be respected, FILIPINOS HAVE TO DO IT MY WAY AND ONLY MY WAY, THE AMERICAN WAY. – Mariano Renato Pacifico
    In spite of those foolish statements you were able to get the nod of some people here. Very strange, indeed! 🙀

    • sonny says:

      IMO, reading people by how they write is many times dicey. Hence a history of correspondence with a specific person helps.

    • I think he gets his high by goading us, thinking he is an intellectual provocateur..see, the more some of us complain, the more arrogant, insulting and reputitive he becomes with his favorite topics – affidavits, the UP media, the Filipino ignorance and his being the only one who got brain, the last his provocative conclusion.

      • “From my analysis, Filipinos are brilliant people.” – Mariano Renato Pacifico..


        ….oh my goodness,,, such contradiction

  44. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    F. Scott Fitzgerald was a notoriously bad speller. In fact, he was such a bad speller that he addressed his good friend Ernest Hemingway in letters as “Earnest Hemminway.” And speaking of Ernest Hemingway, he was famous for bad spelling also. Jane Austen, Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill, Leonardo da Vinci – they were all godawful with spelling and grammar, yet I don’t consider them inferior. Those English Nazis have notoriously low intellect that it makes them think they got IQ by showing their English snobbery.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Here is how arrogant the U.P.-graduate journalists are: (Yes, Virginia, I do read Entertainment on top of reading Inquirer which is entertaining enough)

      “The stream-of-consciousness, grammar-challenged, punctuation-deprived missives exposed GP as shallow, self-centered, and vacuous. Thing is, drumbeaters have packaged GP as smart and articulate.

      GP frequently murders both English and Filipino languages in public and in private. GP’s political opinions are laughable at best.”

      NEVER, EVER MURDER ENGLISH LANGUAGE !!! Because English Language to Filipinos is measure of intellect.

      • karl garcia says:

        alam ko symbolic lang ang anti UP mo as source of media practioners,senators,communists,socialists. kahit medyo totoo nga madami sa nabanggit sa UP nang galing pero parang mnemonic device na eh.Media = UP
        senators = UP.
        ano nga ba ang gusto ko sabihin? basta ganyan ang napuna ko

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      I am a huge fan of Anthony Bourdain and Andrew Zimmern. They talk and interview English-challenged people on the streets from different countries on location. These people struggle. Yes, they do not have perfect English. Yes, they can be understood. Yes, the producers did not edit syntax errors. Fastforward 16,000 miles to the Philippines … what do we see?

      Those they interview are not to speak English if they mangle English grammar. It is either English or Tagalog. Why? Why this English-snobbery? Why this addiction to perfection of English?

      I AM NOT ASHAMED TO POST WITH SYNTAX ERRORS. I AM NOT ASHAMED OF MY SPELLING. I do not draft my comments. I type. I hit SUBMIT! Never looked back. Well, what do I have to look back when there is no EDIT functionality. 🙂

      • karl garcia says:

        magaling ka magspell at mahusay english mo. ako, di ko gusto palpak spelling,syntax and grammar ko pero hindi ako takot magkamali, medyo sa tingin ko dapat bawasan error,pero kung magkamali, so what?

        • edgar lores says:

          As JoeAm keeps emphasizing it is not the grammatical quality of the expressed thought that counts but the rational and emotive quality.

          • sonny says:

            @ edgar
            this late in life, I realize where many things belong and fit. During my English language learning years, my teachers heavily rewarded compliance with the rules of orthography, many times to the detriment of comprehension and effectivity of communication. I take to following rules of orthography easier than most and so rewards (grades) reinforced the form rather than the facility and manipulation of logic and concepts. Thus I got less exercised in literary criticism than in literary orthography. I admire those who can handle the former well.

            • sonny,

              I had to Google ‘orthography’, I’ve never heard of this word. I know typography.

              Americans for sure are bad spellers and bad at grammar. And if you read Thomas Jefferson’s or other Founding Fathers works, they were as careless with spelling and grammar. Just goes to show that ideas are the point.

              I guess with that we can segue to teacher quality and training, especially with the new Senior High for 2015.

              While I was there I noticed there were Filipinos who spoke fluent English, almost American (like they were born here) and then the majority had no working knowledge, comprehension was good, both written and speaking were horrendous.

              Why wasn’t English kept up there? Instead it was left to atrophy. From what I gathered it was during Marcos that English as the intellectual (academic) language was replaced with Tagalog.

              • sonny says:

                I went the dictionary route, LCpl_X. I’ve since used the word as short-cut for correct-grammar, spelling, rules of style (the Chicago school), etc. I wasn’t yet comfortable with Google.

                I could only guess about the atrophy. There was a steady decline in the quality of teacher training and consequent pedagogy suffered as well among other things. There was no single cause for this – Very painful to speculate.

            • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

              What I know of atrophy is the loss of muscle mass from disuse, hahaha…completely disoriented, yours truly is….come to think of it, even the Lance corporal, an American speaking the language, has to google orthography…lol

              • sonny says:

                Mary, I went to San Beda for my elem & high school. The Spanish Benedictines through Alemar’s and Goodwill bookstores imported our grammar and literature textbooks printed in the US Midwest as I recall. The period was between 1953 and 1959. Our competition in the public schools were from Mapa High and Torres High. (There were 2 others for the City of Manila). The public schools cost much less to go through then. The Philippine Science High School was only a gleam in someone’s eye also then. 🙂

  45. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    To those foodies out there … If anyone Youtube “Vietnam Cuisine” or “Burmese Cuisine” or any cuisine at all in Asia, you’ll see Youtubers with funny serious videos of their cuisine and their country ….BUT… if you do “Philippine Cuisinie” or “Filipino Cuisine” or just type your locality you want to view, ALL WE GET ARE coming from either Philippine Tourism which is bland and self-serving or from ABS-CBN that are crappy and Filipinos which are mostly “BUGAL-BUGAL”. Nothing serious. WHY?

  46. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Can’t believe Inquirer dedicated their spread to Manny Pacquiao boxing event. They even sent a dedicated staff to pull snippets of news from TMZ and ESPN. Only those snippets that is good for Manny Pacquiao.

    ABCNews, CBSNews, Wall Street, Chicago Tribune, New York Times, WashingtonPost ETCETERA ddo not dedicate coverage of MAYWEATHER EVENT despite Americans are 3-to-1 for Mayweather !!!

    See what I’ve been telling you folks? It is the News Media that is mediocritizing the Filipinos. They even squabble over taking credits of Veloso’s Stay of Execution. They also grab credits of Americans with drop of Filipino blood that suceed in my country despite we were the ones that educated them and gave them safe environment to promote education.

    When I was in the Philippines schooled in exclusive school, my parents were instructed in their PTA meeting not to let us children watch tagalog channels. Instead they recommended that our househelp must have their own television so they can watch love-triangle rags-to-riches tagalog walang-wakasan, walang-katapusan movies.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Change the Philippine Media, we change the Filipinos
      Improve the Philippine Media, so does Filipinos

      Philippine Media been playing the minds of the Filipinos for the longest time.
      Philippine Media pits Filipinos against Filipinos.

      It is time to say “ENOUGH ALREADY”

    • I don’t mind that, Pacquiao is putiing our country in the world map, just like our succesful beauty contenders, winners of talent searches on music and other sports do. So he bought a magnificent mansion in the US, fine, hope he enjoys the fruit of his intense training and actual grueling fight, I pray for him. I also hope that he invest more here in our country to support our economy further. Most of his tax already go to the US, our country gets only a portion (the balance of our tax rate less what’s already paid there.)

      • edgar lores says:

        So our tax rate is higher than the US? The 1% are having it good.

        • I think our maximum tax rate for individuals is 32%. The US has it at 30%. We get the 2% .

          How I wish this fight of the century is held here, think about the 32% in net income tax from ticket sales, pay per view revenues, the tourists who will come here..ummm…thay could have done wonders to our GDP, our economy…Ms. Kim Henares would have attained her DOF mandated quota….sigh!

  47. karl garcia says:

    We have not touched on Federalism. If the BBL is put to a plebiscite and accepted, I think the next step would be to propose federalism. After that those who support parliamentary unicameral form will follow, this may all happen post 2016,unless someone will say no pcos or automation,then no elections.
    The Mayuga report reported the role of the military during elections, Was 2010 any different? was the military not used by overlords during 2010? We got Pinoy,but some Ampatuans and other dynasties were still elected.
    Are the military controlled by the dynasties, are they private armies?
    Presidential: Mar Roxas, Binay, Grace Poe, Lacson, Duterte
    VP: Escudero, Trillanes,????

    Is it true that the taipans are already funding Poe?
    Was it true that they funded Lacson, but GMA still won,And FPJ almost won, because Lacson did not spend the campaign money from the billionaires??? I heard about it, it was not taken as a big deal. I won’t blame media, chismoso ako eh.

    My take is the billionaires are not unanimous, and now there are many of them, before it was only Danding,The Ayalas,Lucio Tan. Now the Sys,Gokongweis,Gotianums,Razon,Villar,etc

    Each candidate can have a Billionaire backer

    • edgar lores says:

      On billionaire backing and vested interests: The more reason for public funding of elections as proposed by @inquirercet.

      • karl garcia says:

        yes, election needs public funding. the billionaires can spend on education,infrastructure,technology,even agriculture and fisheries,but hands off on elections, and campaign spending rules must be strictly enforced.

        • A truly bright idea. Alas! Billionaires support candidates to further their business interests. The INC is a big disappointment, with their block voting tradition, a magnet to aspiring politicians who aspire to be elected in exchange of promises of juicy government appointments. This religious group made possible the election to office the likes of Estradas and the rest of the not so desirable government officials we have now.

  48. I think someone here or Joe needs to write about Duterte, the dark horse in the upcoming presidential elections. It scares me that a hot-headed guy rumored to have links to the NPA and having killing squads is wanted by many to become president of the Philippines. In fact, his supporters actually cite his iron fist as why he should be president, and his accomplishments as Davao Mayor. Personally, I agree with some of his points (such as more development is needed in Visayas and Mindanao), and I think that having a president from Mindanao would help end that area’s underdevelopment, but I don’t think Duterte is the right man. He is capable, but with his attitude and connections, I fear that he would be just as terrifying as Binay as a president.

    As for the recent news on Mary Jane Veloso, it’s funny how Migrante and other militant groups seem to act that, no matter what happened to her (whether she would be executed or not), President Aquino would take the blame. Come on Migrante, don’t you know that the OFW czar is Jejomar Binay? If she was executed, arguably Binay should have taken the blame (Aquino too, if only due to the principle of command responsibility, but only criticizing Aquino while leaving Binay off the hook is disgraceful). Also, remember that Filipino drug mules were executed before in China? I don’t think I ever recall Migrante rallying for those cases. Funny how these militants are watching Aquino’s every move and know his every misstep, but are a lot more reluctant to act on Binay or China (remember their recent rally against China due to the Spratlys issue? It really looked half-hearted, as if they only rallied to appease people). I have a disturbing anecdote: I recently spoke to some militants. They were extremely knowledgeable about Aquino issues (such as Mamasapano), the Laude murder case, the DAP, etc., and yet, the two militants I talked to (who, from the way they spoke, even citing Joma Sison’s three basic problems of imperialism, feudalism, and bureaucrat capitalism, were already deeply indoctrinated with radical ideas) had apparently never even heard of the BSP-Alphaland Deal or Binay’s Mount Makiling Resort issue!

  49. Louie Fernandez says:

    Dear Joe America,

    I am writing you to simply put things in perspective, lest we Filipinos think we are such awful people and be forever down on ourselves.

    You see, quite a few of us readily listen to just about any warm body with a white skin. We’ve been brainwashed to be that way. And you very well know this. That is why you call yourself “Joe America” to cleverly take advantage of this, for what better name is there that projects power and white supremacy than the names “Joe” and “America”. Joe America all in one breath is an awesome double whammy.

    The first and only article I have read of yours ever was your most recent one on Filipino journalism. You were right in many ways.

    Still, who are you really, Joe America? You unfortunately hide behind a nom de plume mask which by definition is not true nor transparent. Meanwhile, you accuse Filipino journalists and media and for their alleged trash and untruths.

    First of all, if I may, a true crusader must be courageous. He must not cover himself or herself with a cape or hide under his mother’s skirt with an alias. So what is your real name, Joe America? If we want this from Ibrahim Iqbal, why not from you?

    The pic you posted, which you seem to be claiming to be you, actually looks like that of an old Union Army officer during the Civil War whose name now escapes me.

    By the way, that very un-civil Civil War continues to rage to this very day in America because of its own systemic and endemic problems.

    I was just discussing with a friend the other day about Rush Limbaugh, whose program was dropped by, of all stations, an Indiana-based company. I said that despite that setback, Limbaugh will last and continue to rock and resonate with his fans, for sadly, hate and bigotry sell extremely well in America. I said that hate and bigotry are in fact a well-honed American industry in so many levels. It is deep, widespread and oh-so all-encompassing.

    The affliction starts from institutions like that corrupt plutocratic group of endless-wars profiteeers that is the military-industrial-financial complex and their owned mouthpiece, the media and its own hacks.

    Then they have their loyal ground supporters, the Republican Party and its own storm troopers in the Tea Party, the nutty Christian fundamentalists, the viscerally racist and brutal, if not murderous and criminal police and all the way down to the grassroots level of ragtag groups of neo-Nazis, KuKluxKlaners, racists, religious and sexual bigots, skinheads, nativists and rednecks.

    It is their collective singular hate for the Other that sustains these conservatives which eventually will consume them and, unfortunately, all of America. Which, by the way, likes to think of and bills itself to the world as a liberal, democratic and egalitarian society.

    In fact, unfortunately, greed, poverty and gaping wealth and income inequality reign in America. America’s Gini income and wealth inequality indices are even higher than those of the Philippines.

    Despite its modernity America is actually feudal. It has a monopolistic media controlled by just three big corporations. It is also burdened with financially and morally bankrupting illegitimate wars which were totally based on lies that in the last couple decades alone have taken at least 3 million of mostly innocent civilian Muslim lives. We all know too well those cruel wars continue to rage to this very day.

    These wars remind me of those medieval monarchs and lords of yore going to Araby to personally fight the infidels for the treasures of the east. They were marketed as the Crusades for “God and Country”. Today, the elected leaders and the rich do not do the fighting. They have even farmed that out to the hapless poor whites, blacks, Hispanics and Asians who couldn’t get a job or afford college and therefore had to “volunteer” to die kill and die for the rich man’s wars.

    The wars’ barbaric killings are of course hardly covered by the oligarchy-owned American media which is guilty in its complicity with its jingoistic war drum beatings, its continued support and the cover-ups of the body bags coming home and the horrific death counts of the Muslim innocents. If you ask me, the wars are crimes against humanity. And this blackout of news in America’s living rooms and a non-conscripted armed forces are the main reasons the wars continue to rage and expand with total impunity.

    You can smugly accuse Filipinos of corruption, having a “damaged culture”, the “sick man of Asia”, etc. But for all our imperfections, Filipinos have committed nothing of this sort of injustices and atrocities brought about by America’s nonpareil culture of war and violence, greed, and racism.

    We never crossed oceans to invade, subjugate, colonize and exploit other people. We did not genocide a native population nor import another to enslave them. If you ask me, those are the worst corruptions on earth or anywhere.

    Filipino journalists for all their human faults are still among the freest in the world unlike American journalists with the State Dept., corporate money and power and foreign political action groups behind their backs and pulling the strings.

    America has these huge, huge grave anti-democratic problems that need to be addressed and solved. Does this not call for a true American hero who stands for Truth, Justice and America? Or is that just in the comics?

    Meanwhile, and I don’t want to sound accusatory. But, you, Joe America, from your comfortable bully pulpit behind a seductive “Joe America”-branded curtain pontificate in your booming voice here in the welcoming warmth of our tropical climes and friendly folks while being purposely oblivious of America’s own frailties and foibles, moral and financial corruptions, soviet-style spying of Americans, perpetual wars, endless violence and incurable dyed-in-the-wool racism.

    In short, the mote in the Filipino’s eye you see, Joe America, but not the plank sticking out of America’s own eye.

    As they say, “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain”, but I am not saying that at all.

    You have many things to say that are certainly worth heeding for a better Philippines, if not a better world. I am just wondering why you don’t try to solve America’s problems back in the states instead to make a better America. You are indeed very much needed there with your ideas and way with words. Why, you’d really and truly be the Great Bwana Joe America, Hero, that I see you very much want to be!

    Now, let me take on your challenge point by point below.

    The sad irony is that, as the Philippines rises to its highest standing in history, its President falls to his lowest popularity ever. What’s with that?

    # It is no different with American reaction to President Obama. His poll ratings are down despite his staving off the financial apocalypse staring at America when he took office, the current low unemployment rate, the record stock prices, the well-accepted affordable health care, etc. These are great accomplishments. #

    We look within and see the argument and corruption surrounding us as Filipinos work diligently to undermine their own well-being. We see:

    Rebels of no persuasive ideology killing and extorting to impose their view.

    # Certainly decades-long rebellions by the NPA and the various Muslim groups prove that their respective ideologies must be persuasive to sustain their wars this long.

    Their continuous supply of new recruits is not due to the killings and the imposition of their views on others, but rather it is the failure of government that drives people to willingly join them and become loyal members who would kill and die for their cause. #

    Muslims and Christians whose faith has no room for welcoming those of different belief. And so they attack.

    # Why point at the Philippines when it comes to Muslim-Christian relations? Why not first look at Christian America’s attack on Muslim Iraq and Afghanistan and elsewhere where some 3 million mostly innocent Muslim lives of women, children and the elderly and infirmed have been snuffed out.

    Why not look at the daily Christian discrimination, demonizing and dehumanization of Muslim Americans in America? #

    Crabs everywhere, to the left and right, thriving in the outlying poor areas where superstition and what people say supplant education and knowledge in their thinking.

    # I take offense in being compared to crabs. By that term you must mean “crab mentality” attributed to Filipinos by holier-than-thou foreigners to make us feel bad towards ourselves. Unfortunately, this canard is swallowed by many unthinking Filipinos who’d believe anything a white person would say.

    They have come to believe that somehow we Filipinos alone in this world have this so-called crab mentality to the point it has become so pervasive that Filipinos routinely accuse each other of this so-called crab mentality as if we were the only people on earth who are afflicted with this universal and very human fault.

    The truth is this crab mentality is an English phrase. We don’t even have an equivalent phrase for it.

    Perhaps many Filipinos are superstitious, but it is just a matter of degree. It can also be said that America which is a very religious country, suffers also from superstition, for the American religionists believe in talking asses, parting waters, walking on water, angels, devils, holy water, holy relics, prayers, miracles, et cetera, et cetera.

    In America’s bible belt they are also against science. Why, the former president, George W. Bush, is anti-science, anti-intellectual, and proud of it. Instead, many Americans still believe in “revealed” truths as the last word on everything when the Japanese and most rich northern European nations have already largely abandoned religion.

    The darkness of “revealed” truth cannot hold a candle against the enlightening scientific method. In other words, many Americans, too, are equally benighted in their many superstitions, whether you call it religion which is what it really is.

    In short, let me say this: People who live in glass houses should not be hurling rocks and stones at others. #

    They will put the Philippines into the hands of a crook and then complain about poor government. Hundreds of institutions (clans, tribes, families,churches, provinces, cities, oligarchs, businesses, advocacy groups) whose leadership is convinced that only they know what is best for Filipinos.

    # But this is true anywhere. Everywhere in the world, people complain about their corrupt politicians and their dynastic reigns. Why, America is no exception. It is, again, a matter of degree. The truth is that there are no bigger crooks in the world than the plutocratic profiteers that control America’s military industrial financial complex.

    It is also perfectly human to believe your cause, your advocacy, your system, your party, or your religion is the one and only way. Don’t the Republicans, the TeaPartiers, conservatives, the KuKluxKlaners, and yes, the Democrats, the liberals, etc. feel the same way about themselves? So why pick on Filipinos alone? #

    The corrosive influence of a tabloid press stunningly weak on information and insight.

    # How is the Philippine press different from America’s tabloid and hate sheets, FoxNews, and the conservative so-called think-tanks, etc.? How is ours worse than the far, far more socially corrosive hate commentators like Limbaugh, Riley, Hannity, Maher, etc. that nightly pollute America’s airwaves? #

    Propaganda artists undermining good thinking and deeds. Most are attorneys, grown-ups, confirmed smart people who seem not to care about the well-being of the nation. They advocate on behalf of crooks.
    The inability of even the smartest people to separate issue from personality. The use of the insult to wage debate.
    We have discussed the divisions, the tribal history of the Philippines, educational shortfalls, and Marcos undercutting trust and promoting corrupt ways.

    # How are American lobbyists, political action committees, and lawyers any better? How is our Philippine media worse than theirvAmerican counterpart which is controlled by just three huge corporations owned by a handful of multibillionaires? Weren’t they the war drum beaters that led to the wars? Weren’t they the ones who bombarded America and the rest of the world with anti-Muslim propagandas to sustain the illegitimate and cruel wars that killed more than 3 million of mostly innocent civilian Muslims and still counting?

    How is the racist and personal attacks on President Obama by Republican politicians and wannabes like Donald Trump any different? #

    We have not discussed parenting and the family. It seems to me that most of the dysfunctionality gets passed from generation to generation within the family:

    Education is left to the schools; there are no books in the home.

    # You simply cannot generalize on this. Filipino families love education. Countless laundry women earning pittance have sacrificed to send their children to finish college.

    We are poor. Very poor. America, Europe and Japan on the other hand are very rich. If they were truly concerned about the poor, they would not wage war against weak countries, slaughter them by the hundreds of thousands, if not by the millions, destroy their cities and their crops, subjugate and then impoverish them with their unequal trade treaties to exploit our natural resources, make us consumers of their manufactured goods, and, worse, to tell them that they are so poor that they do not even have books at home!

    If you knew any better, Joe America, you’d know that the next meal on the table is the more urgent need for hungry stomachs than a book for Junior. #

    Superstition and what “they” say determines everything from faith to politics to medical cures.

    # Again, if you are poor, you simply can’t pay for a medical doctor. You just go to whomever is available and cheap.

    But then we are not so bad. In America where they are rich, they also listen to quacks and other doctors who prescribe useless, if not harmful drugs.

    Big Pharma pays these doctors with lavish trips and “consultancy fees”, if not outright kickbacks, to push their expensive drugs. This is, of course, corruption plain and simple. Which leads me to ask you: Which is morally worse, the rich American greed and corruption, or the poor Filipino ignorance and superstition? #

    The schools are autocratic and so are families. Nurturing is not in the Parenting Playbook.

    # Again, you unfairly generalize. You are viewing the Filipino family through your biased, if not prejudiced, lens. You clearly do not know what you are talking about with regards to the 100+ million Filipinos. You marry a Pinay and you think you are an expert on Filipinos! You marry a Pinay, you think that you have shed your prejudices.

    And as far as the schools are concerned, there are pros and cons about “authoritarian” schools too long to debate over on these pages. One thing I know is we do not have the blackboard jungles you have in the states. We do not have the perennial deadly shootings you have in the schools and universities there. #

    Subsistence becomes the political ideology, and envy the view toward people who get ahead.
    These are things I see, and I frankly don’t know what to do about them.

    #Subsistence is still with us because of the lingering effects of imperialism/colonialism and the damages wrought by West-sponsored WTO. You are blaming the victim without examining the many root causes of our poverty.

    Frankly, Joe America, it is utter crap and racism when you talk about Filipinos’ “envy the view toward people who get ahead.” Again, this is a universal human trait. Are you telling us that you do not have envy in America? No keeping up with the Jones? No pissing contest? No back-stabbing? No kicking away the ladder? These are all American phrases which tell that you that Americans are just as human as the rest of mankind.

    Filipinos have no monopoly on human frailties, foibles and the cardinal sins like envy and vindictiveness, for example, which you arrogantly accuse us of. Are you so holier than us? Why, you even have the temerity to suggest that you are so good that you were even thinking of changing human nature itself! Frankly, don’t feel bad. Just get rid your messianic complex. Nobody is asking you to change or do anything about human nature, let alone us Filipinos#

    Innocent ignorance seems to run deep in the family, and I say that trying not to be some kind of intellectual imperialist,
    but to set it on the table.
    If I am wrong, you can write to that point. Even knowledge is shunned, as in the shunning and ridicule of teachings that psychologists can do or therapy that psychologists can provide. It’s like there is a commitment to darkness, to limitation, to ignorance. Aspiration and ambition are swear words. Envy is a virtue, and its brother, vengeance.

    Is that accurate?
    If so, should something be done about it?
    If so, what?
    That said, the tablet is hereby declared erased.

    Feel fill to fill it up.

    # Of course, you are an intellectual imperialist. Just by the very choice of your name “Joe America” gives it away.

    Again, you generalize about the Filipino family, Worse you are patronizing and condescending with your “innocent ignorance” attribution to all Filipinos as if we were some hapless children. It is smack of the disgraced notoriously racist and imperialistic Rudyard Kipling and his arrogant and ignorant “White Man’s Burden” description of the Filipino.

    Please get off your insidious high horse, Joe America. There are many, many good Americans. You might first try emulating them and changing yourself to be just like them before trying to be a messiah to 100+ million Filipinos which I find absolutely insulting. #

    Joe America

    #Louie Fernandez#

    • andrewlim8 says:

      Hello Louie,

      You said that this was the first and only post of Joe that you have ever read. I suggest then that you go back to the archives and see the several dozen or even hundred posts here where Joe has actually proven his love for this country, perhaps even more than the locals.
      And the ills of America you cited have been acknowledged as well in those previous blogs. Please read them first.

      Would have saved you from that long rant, which was sorely misplaced.

      In case you have not read any previous post here, Society members do take the step of trying to figure out solutions to the nation’s problems unlike other blogs which spew venom without offering any solutions.

      What “intellectual imperialist” are you talking about? Nobody is forced to read or react here, and anyone can publish a blog or write an opinion.

      • edgar lores says:

        Thanks, Andrew. I might add:

        1. Louie’s whole stance is that of a nationalist. Accordingly, no one but a Filipino can or should criticize the Philippines or Filipinos.

        1.1. Your last sentence overturns the argument.
        1.2. Louie also contradicts his own argument by criticizing the US, a tit-for-tat.
        1.3. I would remind everybody of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: everybody has a right to express an opinion “regardless of frontiers”.
        1.4. JoeAm has as much the right to criticize as Louie does.

        2. To me, the source of criticism is less important that the truth of the criticism… and the motivation behind the criticism.

        2.1. This is not to say that the source is unimportant. If the source is consistently biased to a particular point of view than it matters… because then truth is not the main concern. The main concern is either to destroy or to prove superiority.

        2.2. But again I would remind everybody that JoeAm has expressed the view that we — in our negativity — are our own worst enemies. In fact, this was the driving motivation behind his post on tabloid media, which Louie missed.

        2.3. Again, after evaluating the truth or falsity of a criticism, what should one do?
        2.3.1. If the criticism is untrue, what of it? One may ignore it, like water off a duck’s back. Or if one is so inclined, one may dispute it.
        2.3.2. If the criticism is true, should we not recognize it, perhaps accept it and try to reform ourselves?
        2.3.3. The fact that the criticism may not only be true here but also elsewhere is beside the point.

        I would reinforce the values of blogging which has become the Fifth Estate by quoting Louie’s almost namesake, Louis C.K., who said: “All dialogue is positive.” If we were not so aware, Louie has opened our minds to the “ills of America,” as you, Andrew, has put it. This is all grist for the mill as we — the Philippines, America, and all countries and all individuals — move forward.

        • edgar lores says:


          Further on the right to criticize and the source of criticism: In the real world there are protocols to observe. Like a foreign ambassador must not criticize the host country. Or a child must not criticize his elders.

          In the blogosphere, there are almost no hierarchical protocols as such as we are all equals. There should be no discrimination by reason of nationality, age, sex, gender or creed.

          Even so, we must observe certain protocols. Absent a moderator, these protocols are mostly self-imposed.

          o One protocol is to stay on topic… more or less. (This does not apply to this post as it is a tabula rasa.)
          o Another is to answer reason with reason, logic with logic, humor with humor.
          o Another is to avoid name-calling.
          o Another is to eschew ad hominems.

          Ad hominems are of a particular concern… because they can be indirect instead of direct, subtle instead of crass. Catty asides or snide remarks are a good example of this.

          Indeed, the commenter is often not aware that he is guilty of casting ad hominems.

          I am no exception, but I do make the effort — sometimes but not all of the time! — to check my internal feeling or expression before hitting the Submit button. More often than not it is after I hit the button. Is my feeling one of having made a productive comment or not? Is it a feeling of honesty, humility and pride instead of just plain superiority? Is my expression a smirk or a genuine smile?

          (I know, I know humility and pride are supposed to be opposites, but strangely in some cases they are not. I think there is false pride and true pride. But I will solve that conundrum at another time.)

          All of these clues point to motivation… and motivation is primary. Do we blog to enlighten? And is it to enlighten others but not ourselves? Or do we blog simply to have our voice heard?

          I am aware that sometimes, even with the best of intentions, our contributions are misread. Like attempts of humor that fall flat. (I remember such a one when I invited Juana to lunch.)

          I submit that a primary purpose, if not the primary purpose, of blogging is refinement. The refinement of our country and the world, and the refinement of our minds and hearts.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Louie, it is obvious there is a problem in the Philippine Media.
      1. I do not know Binay from Adam but the Philippine Media sold out to Filipino people to vote for Binay.
      2. RP Media can analyze politics but cannot analyze that hearings should be behind doors so Binay and the U.P. crooks cannot know the bird in their hand so as not to jeopardize investigation.
      3. RP Media can know Archimedies to Voltaire but cannot know how important evidences are than paid, eng-get, intimidated witnesses
      4. RP media can analyze verb and nouns but cannot analyze why Americans prefer evidences over affadavits.
      5. RP media is promoting religion that made Filipinos dependent on intergalac tic extra terrestrial beings despite religion has not worked its wonders for the past 500 years


      • MRP, you really has a thing for the PHILIPPINE MEDIA. I agreed only as far as the slanted news reporting and I get credited with generalizing. I read only read three – Inquirer, Philstar and rappler and it’s there that I find the slanted news. Now where else do I go for the news? Life is funny, sometimes.

    • Mami Kawada Lover just mentioned “Joma Sison’s three basic problems of imperialism, feudalism, and bureaucrat capitalism” above your comment. You touched on all three. Coincidence?

      Please get off your judgmental high carabao, Louie. Here at the Society, we pride ourselves in having finely honed BS detector.

      Looks like you also need to take your advice: “You might first try emulating them (good, earnest, and discerning Filipinos) and changing yourself to be just like them before trying to be a messiah to 100+ million Filipinos which I find absolutely insulting.”

    • i7sharp says:

      @Louie Fernandez
      to Joe America
      # How is the Philippine press different from America’s tabloid and hate sheets, FoxNews, and the conservative so-called think-tanks, etc.? How is ours worse than the far, far more socially corrosive hate commentators like Limbaugh, Riley, Hannity, Maher, etc. that nightly pollute America’s airwaves? #

      Louie, whom do you recommend people read or listen to?
      Can you name your favorite writers, commentators, …?

    • hackguhaseo says:

      Sheesh that was long… It’s a shame that you pretty much say the same thing throughout the whole post. As a genuine Filipino though, born and raised here in General Santos, Mindanao, Philippines, I can say that Joe has always been on point and has never written anything that can be taken as racist by anyone who has half a brain to recognize that he has always offered valid criticisms.

      You, however, come off as nothing more than the typical, prideful idiot who cries “I know you are but what am I!” whenever he gets criticized. Basically, another butt hurt Filipino…

      But since Joe isn’t here, let me take this opportunity to address at least some of the insults and unfounded accusations that you are throwing his way until he gets back.


      You say that he should reveal himself because “a true crusader should be courageous” or some such BS. Are you nuts? With people like you walking around, he could get deported and harassed to no end, and don’t you freakin say that won’t happen because it does.

      Tell the truth about how our national boxing icon sucks at playing basketball will you? Get out of our country!


      You say that Joe should put his country of origin first before meddling in our affairs but what good will that do? There are already hundreds, if not thousands of bloggers and social crusaders in the US doing the same thing, what difference can one more make?

      We, on the other hand, have very few people like Joe in the country and those who are doing the same thing are prone to the usual flaws that afflict those who grew up in the country. Easily offended, easily riled up, throwing logic out the window and resorting to ad hominem attacks instead at the slightest provocation. We NEED someone level-headed and clear of thought like Joe because we have too few people like that.

      More than that, we NEED someone like Joe who can bring like-minded individuals together to talk about real problems that are plaguing this nation and to provide us with insight that those in more enlightened parts of the world have to share.


      Then you go on to say that the US is full of the same if not worse flaws as the Philippines, but this doesn’t change the fact that the Philippines is afflicted with all those flaws! How will pointing out that America has its own share of problems solve our own?

      I’ll tell you how. It doesn’t!

      Just as there are those in the US campaigning to make sure that their own population is informed and their problems will be solved, so should we do the same. Unfortunately, this doesn’t happen because we have folks like you who lose their minds whenever they are presented with facts that they consider to be an attack on their own ideals or your so-called “Pinoy Pride” (whatever that means).

      Most Filipinos are way too sensitive to be frank with, but to be perfectly honest, that is their problem.


      “You simply cannot generalize on this. Filipino families love education.” Just to elaborate on this point, Filipino families love the wealth and prestige that education can bring them. I was educated in public schools, private schools and graduated from a Science High School. I can tell you that people in this country focuses more on the profit of being an educated person.

      Students are not taught to learn for the sake of learning and being knowledgeable but rather to become professionals and earn good money so that they can be lifted out of poverty. Money and a good life is what they focus on and ignore the social, economical and political aspects of the world except for those that affect them in the most obvious of ways.

      I’m not saying that getting education to overcome poverty is wrong. But to only focus on personal wealth and the wealth of the family while ignoring everything else? On this, Joe has it right.

      I’m speaking of the majority of course since there are those who work towards charity work and whatnot.


      Now, I don’t have the time to address all of your criticisms, so let me just end it with this until next time. Joe is not racist by any measure. You only perceive him that way because you can’t accept the truth.

      Joe is certainly speaking from a higher position than you or I, much like how a teacher speaks from a higher position from a student. And much like a student, you believe that you know more than the teacher.

      Finally, everything, and I mean every single thing that Joe said about Filipinos and this country is ABSOLUTELY RIGHT. I’m a Filipino. Never been to the US and have lived in the Philippines my whole life except for when I went to Indonesia for an ambassadorial trip. I recognize and accept all the criticisms being leveled at us. But that is a trait is absurdly rare here in this country, and so I’m not surprised that you don’t feel the same way.

  50. @ andrew and sir edgar

    I agree wholeheartedly on all your points.

    I would add just a little as what you have already stated expressed most of what I feel

    @ louie fernandez

    As andrew has suggested, read up on joe’s articles. Remember, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, more so when based on that little knowledge of joe and his writings, you posted that long rant that is almost a whole blog article. FYI, Joe has revealed to us his true name. And the picture in his avatar is his great grandfather.

    We read his blog, not because of his name, his skin color or his citizenship. We read because we found his blog to be more credible, frank and honest. He expresses what we feel. We came, we read, and we stayed on our own accord, we were not forced or duped.

    You are insulting us because what you are saying is that we are not capable of intellectual discernment. And I will reiterate what I often say about Joe ..he is more a Filipino than most of us here. I can sense his passion and enthusiasm about this country which he came to love.

    • What was his real name? I don’t recall him ever saying that, only that he’s living in Biliran.

      I agree with this. Just because he’s an American (or a foreigner) for that matter doesn’t mean his suggestions and comments are automatically anti-Filipino. Just look at the Inquirer’s Peter Wallace, who is an expat, but nonetheless gives many good solutions that, if only the Philippine government would listen to him, there could be actual progress. Heck, even if Joe were a Chinese, if he still wrote like how he does now I would still believe him.

      • edgar lores says:

        There is an “Anonymity” tab at the top of the screen beside the “Home” tab where JoeAm explains his reasons for using a pseudonym.

        • >I write in anonymity because I can be disagreeable.
          Frankly that doesn’t seem to be a strong reason. That violates media ethics where anonymity is used to hide attacks and the like. There is a reason why the article I posted here before, I used my real name.

          • His name is Ronald something…German sounding surname which I cannot recall at the moment. He is an American-German, a former artillery man in the Vietnam war, turned banker and marketing genius….

            • Found this:
              >In the spirit of Marcos patriotism, I would like to announce that my real name is Ronald Hertzenberger and I live in Cebu.
              Actually now Biliran, but still…

          • louie, Mami:

            This thread’s really simple, post a problem and offer solutions, or get into a productive debate or discussion about the problems listed above.

            Your questions about anonymity and other criticisms can be directed to JoeAm when he returns from vacation, no need for conjectures–we are not JoeAm’s attorneys here.

            There’s no room for being offended. And if you fall back on delicadeza, being delicate, then you’ve only proved JoeAm’s point.

            This thread is about the Philippines and how to better the Philippines. But if you want to play the false equivalency game, that the Philippines and US are equally messed up, I can help.

            I am an American, I’ll gladly answer any criticism–with just one condition, that in engaging this compare & contrast debate we turn it back towards the intent of this thread, how to better the Philippines.

            So how can I enlighten your views about the US?

          • edgar lores says:

            That’s just one reason of many?

  51. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    1. Arab Spring came about because bloggers and social media NOT THE NEWS MEDIA
    2. Philippine Revolution was sparked not by the NEWS MEDIA but by Jose Rizal’s El Feli and Noli Me
    3. Benigno Aquino won the presidency because the PHILIPPINE MEDIA splashed his face bowling over his mother’s coffin. THE PHILIPPINE MEDIA played on emotional state of the Filipinos. They do not know who Aquino was. I do not know either. I elected Benigno THRU THE RECOMMENDATION OF THE PHILIPPINE MEDIA.
    4. I do not know BINAY. Nor Nancy. Nor Abigail. Elinita and Jejo Jr. I voted for them BECAUSE IT WAS RECOMMENDED SUBTLY BY PHILIPPINE NEWS MEDIA.
    5. I am now against Binay because that is what PHILIPPINE NEWS MEDIA TOLD ME TO.
    6. I did not believe Binay’s accuser but with the flurry of AFFIDAVITS AND WITNESSES AS PRESENTED BY PHILIPPINE NEWS MEDIA, now I believe them. I threw away my belief in evidences and now believe in witnesses.
    7. I ACCUSED OUR PRETTY NEIGHBOR OF PHILANDERING. I had that gall because according to Philippine Media it is OK without evidence just witness account and affidavits.



    GO JOE! GO! GO! GO!

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      8. I am now praying because PHILIPPINE NEWS MEDIA splashed a Manny Pacquiao headline praying in church …
      9. I am now not going to college because Philippine News Columnists say “if you believe in God nothing is impossible”
      10. I am not voting this election because According to PHILIPPINE NEWS MEDIA Veloso was saved by prayer not by Binay.


      11. THE PHILIPPINE NEWS MEDIA has made high-school drop-out Manny Pacquiao a God. A Saint. The pride and joy of Filpinos. Now, I am taking boxing. Boxing is cheaper. College not required.
      12. Filipinos are now learning boxing because of Philippine News Media.


      13. Difficulty in determining the TeaMilk chemical? No problem. Drag in the son of the TeaMilk owner and ask him what chemical he placed in the TeaMilk.
      14. Cannot have a copy of BinayLand TCT? No problem, call in Tiu and have him present TCT in the name of Binay. Get Angry. Sue Tiu for not forging TCT in the name of Binay.


      I THINK I AM THE ONLY ONE LEFT IN THE PHILIPPINES WHO GOT BRAIN TO THINK. Join me. Go Evidence. Outsource Philippine Media.

  52. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Here is how unprofessional the Philippine Media is.

    I used to be serial commenter in RAPPLER. I got into squabble with Allan among others my attack on U.P. If anyone here is a follower of Rappler you know who Allan is. The owner of Rappler. He is from U.P.

    Allan accused me of FAILING UPCAT. Very typical of Filipino responses which happens to be the culture of Filipinos, too!!! To clear the air, I did not or would ever enroll in U.P. If I had the chance for personal and philosophical reason.


    THEREFORE, Philippine Media is a crook for protecting their Alma Mater.


    THEREFORE, Philippine Media protects their own. You never hear of Philippine Media criticizing their own. They never do Brian Williams or Britt McHenry. They never do. That is why Filipinos are made to believe that Philippine Media is above board. What they print is the truth. Not biased. Not judgemental.

    THEREFORE, whatever Philippine Media recommends to be the president The Filipinos vote.

    (A higher being can vouch for what I have posted)

  53. i7sharp says:

    Liberland’s right to exist may be legally questionable but that has not stopped its founders from dreaming of building a thriving, free-market economy – a sort of Balkan Hong Kong, with a large population living in yet-to-be built skyscrapers.

    The fact that their new country occupies less than three square miles is no impediment to nationhood, they say – both the Vatican City State and Monaco are smaller.

    The founders claim that Liberland is neither a stunt nor an elaborate joke but a serious proposition based on the fact that the patch of land is “terra nullius” – unclaimed by any other country.

    Any “terra nullius” you know of? 🙂

    • i7sharp says:

      Does the Philippines really have 7,107 islands?
      Where can one find a list of them?

      What if, say, Google finds 7,777 islands instead?

      btw, …
      Does the CRRP really have 8,000 pages?
      Did anyone even find a copy of it?

      • sonny says:

        I’ve been looking for sources for this island count since 1998. Pls share your findings. So far Palawan archipelago & Sulu archipelago can supply, maybe, 5,000 islands. I know that that US Geodetic Survey deployed at least two ships to chart all waters of the Philippines. We (US military and Philippine Gov’t) still depend on these soundings until now. 🙂

        • We toured the hundred islands in Pangasinan in one of our company outings.

          • sonny says:

            Mary, I am happy to note there are actually 126 islands! (give or take). 🙂 Those boats feel so frail. Wala pang life jackets. Mama mia.

            • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

              Meron na manong… jacket, that is…although the boats still looked frail. The boatmen showed off by diving in the midst of the deepest water to transfer from one boat to another or to change from paddling to switching their motors.

              • sonny says:

                Mary, I made a mental note not to make the water crossings anytime after 2 pm. The waters start becoming unruly after that time. I’m not sure if the municpalty is equipped with adequate sea equipment in case of emergency. I’m not sure also of the adequacy of the lighthouse and navigational equipment or how much investment the municipality has put into safe tourism. Otherwise else, the Hundred Island is really a sight to behold and enjoy.

              • It’s a good thing then that we made the crossings right after breakfast considering this great fear of mine of unruly waters. It was worth the trip, the views are spectacular, we stpped for a while near one of the islands to watch the vats, then in another one to enjoy the clear water cavortings.

  54. i7sharp says:

    One way to keep track of news on Manny – every minute:
    (case-sensitive, small letters all).

    pacq – Pacquiao
    gn – Google News

  55. Bing Garcia says:

    With the Sevilla resignation, it seems the chances of Mar Roxas being president have been dashed.

  56. karl garcia says:

    What else?
    we have disaster preparedness guidelines, does every barangay know of thise guidelines?

    Barangays are first line of defense as far as safety and security is concerned.
    Barangays are necessary so things don’t need to go to court.

    The justice in wheels is doing good on case backlogs, but still a case can be delayed for 20 years.
    People with money can delay to the max.Our sardine can jails must reduce population by reducing terms by community service, some seminars,etc.

    • sonny says:

      Karl, our old house on 15th Avenue and Aurora Blvd received a conflagration scare a few years ago. The area is squatter infested to the point of no return. The fire department small truck could not go through because our esquinitas were blocked by vehicles parked as if the owners also owned the street as their garages. Barangays in MetroManila have their own subcultures.

      • Same here in our area, even today. Someone remarked that if a driver successfully navigated through parked cars and tricycles in the sidewalk (with the pedestrians relegated to the streets among ongoing traffic), going to our subdvision, then he truly will be an expert driver. Yet another reason for my decision to invest in a condo, away from undisciplined car owners, you are quite accurate in saying so, who act as if they have a TCT on half the street and sidewalks. It’s no wonder they have to call the AFP and asked helicopters to get water from Manila Bay , I suppose, hahaha) and tried to put out a fire that broke out in the area.

        Can’t quite understand the fact that Marikina has succeeded in disciplining car owners and commuters there, while our city cannot do the same. Our mayor is the wife of our former 3 termer mayor, who is the son of the former 3 termer dad and mom. Geez…..It’s all in the family…..

      • karl garcia says:

        Magagalit pa ang nasusunugan st aagawin pa ang hose,lalo tuloy tatagal sunog. Ganyan napanood ko sa isang documentary.

  57. karl garcia says:

    NIMBY is the reason for petition of relocation of powerplants,gabage dumps,factories,and so on.
    We really need all stakeholders to have a conference on land use. Where are powerplants allowed? where are land fills and the like allowed, buildings,redidential office,mix used,etc.
    Where are trees allowed,are they allowed in the middle of the street?
    when will logging be outlawed ?

    • karl garcia says:

      so many quarried rocks around, yet we still import cement,what is the use of destroying mountains, to help reclamation in other countries?

      • sonny says:

        Karl, producing cement (Portland process) is relatively straightforward. I am personally aware of two sites where this is done: Bacnotan, La Union and Lobo, Batangas. Because of history project, this is the only pointer I can provide. You’re right the Bacnotan site has been quarrying limestone from the town’s beachfront since I can remember as a boy of 9. I really don’t know whether the cement produced is for local consumption or export. The current capitalist in that town is Holcim Cement. I have no more information on the Lobo site. Batangas politicos would know I imagine. Both sites have quarries close to limestone deposits, the starting material for cement making.

    • mercedes santos says:

      Is there a town planning committee in each municipality at all ? I doubt it, as long as there is lagay, anybody can put up a MacMansion, anywhere; just ask Pacwan !!!

  58. karl garcia says:

    what do we do with media MRP? abolish media?as long as there is small and large there will always be the plural form of medium..

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Karl, let them be like Joe allow me to rant in his blogsite. Allow foreign news to invest in the Philippines. Currently, IT IS ILLEGAL FOR FOREIGNERS TO HAVE NEWSPAPER IN THE PHILIPPINES!

      JoeAm cannot even comment and publish his opinion prior to election !!! And to think JoeAm gave us the light at the end of the tunnel.

  59. If the heaf of the family decided he wants to watch TV patrol even after you express your objection, other family members, while having dinner, have to watch also to conserve power and family peace.

    It is in this instances that i get to watch how this news program has a seemingly permanent and nightly slot for the noisy left leaning groups and their spokesmen/woman. A few nights ago, i have to control myself from breaking plates (joke only, I am not into that kind of anger management solver, just saying) when i watch how Mary Jane Veloso’s mom displayed her ungrateful, easily influenced (by Migrante group) attitude towards the government.

    She said quite a mouthful of diatribes saying she is back, ready and eager to collect what is owed her family for their troubles thus earning the ire of netizens and turning their compassion towards her to anger and disbelief…the nerve of this unthinking, ungrateful woman.

  60. God, in Jesus’ Mighty Name, please protect both fighters from permanent, even fatal harm…please let Pacquiao win, but your will be done.

    • Micha says:

      On matters of culture and politics, I would say magkakatugma halos ang pananaw natin, at least most of the time. But on this one I can’t help blurting out a howl on the absurdity of your petition.

      Are you saying God is taking sides?

      Or that he will make sure nobody gets hurt in a contest where both protagonists would display no compunction to beat the other into a pulp given the slightest chance?

      • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

        Boxing is a violent sport, that’s why I usually don’t watch it. Since it is a violent sport, it is inevitable that both will be hurt.

        My short prayer is for both protagonist to not be permanently harmed (being paralyzed, or like Roach, having speech difficulty, or Muhamad Ali who had this trembling, all from head injuries…or worse be in a coma or fatally injured).

        Thank God both are ok, not much blood was spilled.

        God in his infinite wisdom lets human beings choose which road to choose, but I believe he answers our supplication, subject to His will and His overall plans. He has made known His desires for us through the Bible, but we are allowed freedom of choice.

        I usually avoid religious debates, sorry if my short prayer will result in one. I realized now that I should have done it privately….

        • Micha says:

          Sabi ni Freddie Roach, mula ng maging born again si Pacman nabawasan na ang killer instinct nya sa bawat laban.

          Mabuti pa mag-retire na lang sya at maging full time pastor.

          • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

            Roach is entitled to his opinion….tama, tutal mayaman na sya at may edad na rin para sa boxing profession, mag retire na lang talaga amg pinakamahusay.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      God chose wife-beater Floyd to win. IT IS TIME TO SWITCH RELIGION.

  61. karl garcia says:

    Will cctv instalation in offices govt or private be a way to reduce bribery,sexual harrasment,petty theft,and so on and so forth.
    Discipline is still the answer, but admittedly we stil lack discipline.

    • I remember our trainer, when I worked at a hospital, saying, “Ladies and gentlemen, let me remind you that this hospital is wired. We got cameras everywhere so always be on your best behavior if you do not want to watch yourself on the six o’clock news.”

      I guess, installing cctv in government offices could keep employees honest and well behaved.

      • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

        Yep, so true, although with BIR, and other revenue generating agencies, under the table deals are done outside of government offices. I wish AMLA and the banks will seriously coordinate with each other, and properties of those in government including their relatives and rumored mistresses be posted in government websites…oops, too radical?

        • Not radical but good sense, and you make a lot of it, Mary. I think this is the reason why rep in both houses drag their feet about passing FOI. They are not ready to for real reform in government service.

          • Juana Pilipinas says:

            *not ready for real reform

          • Thanks, Juana… I think a watered down version of the proposed FOI is in the offing, pity.

            Your are so correct, it’s our government officials who are hindering real reform in government service, to protect their own interest, think of another dragging of their feet in passing the anti dynasty law.

            Meanwhile, I think the citizens are not yet ready also, they don’t participate or get involved enough in what is happening in our country except to complain and whine, they are easily influenced by what the radio, TV and tabloid media are peddling. Worse, they even sell their votes to the highest bidder, at least the masa voters do which comprise the majority. They and some of middle class are all busy seeking for self gratification.

            And the worst of all, they are not interested in voting, I know of some who have not voted not even once after reaching the voting age although they can discern the good and the bad politicians.

        • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

          NOPE! It is not radical idea! IT IS ORIGINAL! My parents told me during the time of waning days of Marcos regime, Philippine Star published the mansions of crony of Marcos. IT WAS EFFECTIVE !

      • jameboy says:

        I guess, installing cctv in government offices could keep employees honest and well behaved.
        CCTV will keep employees honest and well behaved? I don’t know about that.

        All I know is you can talk corruption when and how to do it on the phone even with 100 CCTVs right in front of your face.

        Honesty is a character the CCTV cannot expose nor detect. 📹

        • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

          AMEN! Totally agree ! Absolutely! Your argument is non-negotiable. IT IS ABSOLUTE!

        • How about cctv and sophisticated lip reading devices, another radical idea.

          • jameboy says:

            True, that’s a radical idea. I’m not sure that we’re in that stage where we can determine a person’s personality or intent by utilizing technology. The best determinator of human behavior is still the human technology. ⛔

            • The radical idea came to me after you said:

              “All I know is you can talk corruption when and how to do it on the phone even with 100 CCTVs right in front of your face.”

              Ok, the corrupt will say in their defense “I’m just dictating a line to my aspiring script writer nephew…for a school program…” me and my overactive imagination – radical ideas and second guessing. Told you guys, don’t wanna be serious today.

              • jameboy says:

                Mary, I don’t exactly get what you’re saying. You talked about radical idea and I agree and the point of your last post is? ❓

              • karl garcia says:

                Ok I am wrong,cctv bad idea.end of debate.

              • jameboy says:

                Who said you’re wrong? I think you raised a good issue about CCTV in gov’t and private offices. Although it may not be possible in terms of detecting what people are thinking it could very well apply to other activities happening in the office like physical sexual harassment or even actual theft. 🚷

              • Actually, in this post, I was kind of making fun of myself with my radical ideas, overactive imagination and second guessing the corrupt if and when they are charged as a result of the CCTV and that radical idea of mine – the use of sophisticated lip reading devices. Not trying to start a debate, there, guys.

              • karl garcia says:

                Hire deaf people,the ones who are trained lip readers.Actually cctvs are nothing if no one monitors,otherwise it would be a purely after the fact device.keep the cctv monitord low profile or incognito.

              • karl garcia says:

                wala ka ngang sinabi na mali ako pero you just shot down the ideas exchanged here.

        • The hot issue right now related to CCTV is for police officers here to be all issued body cameras recording as they work. This program is also backed by Federal money for purchase of these body cameras.

          The studies behind this push for body cameras seem promising. Entire departments that used these body cameras found less use of force incidents (promoting more restraint, less bad behaviour) and also found that in cases of force or complaints by citizens these cameras exonerated officers more than convicted them.

          So the presence of cameras in the work place or in public or in homes do change people’s behaviour for the better. Some years ago after 9/11 police departments wanted to copy the London CCTV model and that was nixed, citing privacy concerns. These days, because of the miniaturization of this technology and lowered cost, many houses now have CCTV type systems, which get used by police during investigations–so in effect they did get their London CCTV, just privately owned.

          Also small businesses, fast food joints, warehouse, clinics, all have similar CCTV set-ups, and petty theft, inappropriate work place behaviour, lack of work ethics, do get captured and employees are on their toes at work–so also good from a managerial point of view.

          For small things you can prevent, like petty theft, or for capturing crimes whose assailants were caught unaware of the cameras, CCTV technology is effective, but not for high level corruption, since this happens clandestinely. Preventing small things and investigating serendipitous crimes, cameras are effective but CCTVs aren’t a fix-all.

          Hence the importance of an FBI-type institution (the NBI) task with investigating government corruption, and a press that’s highly capable with investigative journalism. CCTV represents only the technological component to preventing corruption, in the end you need people who are above reproach backed by organizations (whether law enforcement or the press) with the means to shed light on all involved.

          So cameras do change behaviour, but NBI and the press is the real solution. The capacity, expertise for in-depth investigations should be the focus. Government bureaucracies have tendencies to be complicit, because of nepotism/cronyism, etc. this is the reason improving the press there is very crucial–in-depth investigations is the key to fighting real high level corruption.

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        I am sorry to douse cold water on your suggestion, Juana. As you know, Filipinos are vehemently violent fanatically extreme religious people. Filipinos know they cannot fool God when judgement time comes.

        Filipinos are aware that GOD IS WATCHING. But they still steal. So, therefore, despite being recorded by CCTV and Saint Peter, THEY STILL STEAL. Might as well save CCTV money. If they had bought CCTV, it would still be another controversy and thievery.

        The thieves steal in proportion to their alma mater. U.P.-products steal the most. Those from Ateneo and la Salle steal the least.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Binay and his bodyguards were caughted in CCTV in Forbes. NOTHING CAME OUT OF IT.

  62. karl garcia says:

    On tourism, I tried an SMDC resort on Nasugbu,despite the negative reviews on travel blogs, I enjoyed the place. I would not invest in a timeshare though, good thing they relaxed the members only or accompanied by a member rule.In its four years of existense it is still well maintained.
    Developers can make or break the environment. I was mad at SM a few months ago for cutting trees in Baguio, but in some other places,they kept the beauty of the place.

    ud by Mayweather.
    Iam watching the delayed telecast,so many low blows ignored by the ref.

  63. josephivo says:

    I do not understand a lot about boxing, but again it was clearly President Aquino’s fault that the national hero lost his fight.

    • edgar lores says:

      Yes, clearly it was. He said it would be the national hero’s crowning glory. Like the capture of Marwan would be the PNP’s crowning glory. But he did not review the assault plan in detail. He trusted Roach too much.

    • Mary Grace P. gonzales says:

      Hahaha…now, let us expect migrante to burn more Aquino effigies in protest…maybe some of them will blame Pnoy for appointing Henares who is distracting and hounding Pacquiao

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        Pacquiao lost plain and simple. Shoulder injury is just pure unadulterated Filipino excuse. Here are the clues why Manny Pacquiao lost:
        1. ROACH SAID, “weight is no problem”. Therefore, IT IS THE PROBLEM. Roach wouldn’t have come out and said that if it wasn’t a problem. NON-NEGOTIABLE
        2. PACQUIAO SAID, “Pray for me”. It is obvious sign that Pacquuiao realized his opponent is unbeatable. NON-NEGOTIABLE
        3. Pacquiao ate a lot to bring up his weight to speed. Unfortunately, what he ate doesn’t convert to muscles in 24-hours. THIS IS NEGOTIABLE AND DEBATABLE
        4. Floyd is taller, heavier, and, longer reach. Pacquiao is shorter, lighter and shorter reach.
        5. PACQUIAO is OVERLY-CAUTIOUS! That is why he is not punching as much as he used to NOT HIS EXCUSE THAT HE GOT INJURY ON HIS SHOULDER
        6. ROACH chose a Mixed-Martial-Artist to spar with Pacquiao. That is how he got injured.
        7. FINALLY, God did not want mixed up with mixed-martial-artist and education-optional boxing that beat each others brains out.

    • Juana Pilipinas says:

      🙂 🙂 🙂

    • jameboy says:

      I do not understand a lot about boxing, but again it was clearly President Aquino’s fault that the national hero lost his fight.
      It’s okay not to understand something but don’t try to create intrigue by resorting to fact-twisting. 🐸

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        What is going to happen to Filipinos? They lost big time. God failed them despite their concerted prayers. The inspiration of the Filipinos humbly accepted defeat! What inspired Filipinos? Hit the books? Or, hit the punching bag?

        • edgar lores says:

          There was an article in Rappler about Filipinos not being able to tell truth from satire. This was my comment:

          A scientific study by the Rosewell Institute has concluded that Asians in general and Filipinos in particular cannot detect satire because they have round faces and flat noses. Round-faced people tend to have short noses, and short noses have short nasal passages that disallow inhaled air to be thoroughly sampled for the detection of impurities. In contrast, the long, large and aquiline noses of Caucasians provide not only a greater area and density for olfactory nerves but also a longer air tunnel whereby impurities undergo a lengthier temporal exposure and thus can be more readily sensed and more accurately identified. It is a well-known fact that odor is not only a gas cloud but actually consists of particles that hang in the air. Thus Westerners are better able to separate fact from fiction, and truth from satire.

          The Rosewell Institute has also theorized that Asians have poorly developed writing skills and have an inordinate respect for the intelligence of writers and their products. Thus, they tend to take for granted the truth of the written word. Also the written word does not carry any visual clues – facial expressions, body language and hand gestures – associated with the spoken word that Filipinos are very sensitive to.

          • Ok, let’s see….I got Joseph’s, andrew’s and your comments as satire though I don’t have a Caucasian nose, hence my satiric rejoinder.

          • Bert says:

            I don’t know about other Asians but some Filipinos can’t even see cockroaches on newspaper headlines. Detecting satire is more challenging. It might have something to do with noses, who knows, but the second paragraph of The Rosewell Institute theory I think has more weight.

            I agree with Edgar’s Rappler comment.

          • karl garcia says:

            At first I thought it was Roswell or area 51.We learned fact from fiction from aliens.We grasp satire pretty well,otherwise why would be there more pilosopos than philosophers.our bullshit detectors are the eyes,ears and especially the feet. Pag malambot bullshit yun.

            • edgar lores says:

              Ah, Karl, very good. You were able to make the connection between Roswell and aliens. It may be true that Filipinos are good detectors of bullshit, but there is many an evidence to the contrary, don’t you agree? The supremacy of Binay in the polls for one.

              And there is a difference between bullshit and satire. Bullshit is falsity. Satire is a semblance of truth dressed up in exaggerated falsity. Bullshit smells; satire can come up smelling like roses. Bullshit, if wrapped, would leak; satire, if wrapped, would be like a Christmas present complete with bows and ribbons.

  64. andrewlim8 says:

    Don’t worry, Manny may still have a chance to win…. tomorrow, in the Inquirer headlines. 🙂
    They got Veloso dead even if she wasn’t . 🙂

    • edgar lores says:

      This from FB: “Statistics of the fight: Pacquiao: 240 hits and 30 successful. Mayweather: 256 Hugs and 45 kilometers running.”

  65. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Manny’s loss is church loss
    Manny prayed
    God did not answer
    Filipinos prayed
    God did not answer
    Floyd won
    Filipinos converting in mass to Buddhism
    Any religion as long as it is not Christian-themed

    • Micha says:

      Humanism, a more coherent and reality-based form of faith.

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        I am a humanist! Therefore I am human! Filipinos are not! Because they believe that everything they do is because of God, therefore, they are failed robots.

      • One can be a Catholic-Humanist,

        a Buddhist-Humanist,

        a Muslim-Humanist,

        and an Atheist-Humanist.

        Humanism doesn’t nullify other faiths it increases it by way of reason–although most Humanists become Atheists or Agnostics.

        • edgar lores says:

          Not really. Humanism is all-embracing — that is, embracing of all humanity.

          Buddhist-humanist is feasible because Buddhism is non-theistic. It is said that studying Buddhism and its central practice of meditation can make one a better Christian or a better Muslim. (Note that I am talking about philosophical Buddhism.)

          Atheist-humanism (and agnostic-humanism) is indeed the foundation of secular humanism.

          Catholic-humanist and Islam-humanist are contradictions in terms because these religions espouse exclusive God-truths: there is only one true God. If you are NOT a Christian, you will NOT get into heaven. If you are NOT a Muslim, you will NOT get into Jannah.

          • “Catholic-humanist and Islam-humanist are contradictions in terms”

            This is where interpretations play a big role, edgar. The renaissance in southern Europe and age of enlightenment in western/central Europe were fostered by Catholic priests and soon Protestants who believed in God but also reason.

            Same with Islam, astronomy, Algebra, chemistry, etc. were pursued by Muslim scientists, because of the Quran’s urging to use one’s intellect–and that’s from God.

            Jesus didn’t go around telling his disciples that he was the Son of God and belief in him equals salvation, he urged them to get rid of stuff and serve people. Salvation by belief only was later Paul’s theme. John 3:16 isn’t something Jesus said, it’s something John said (or later writers posing as John).

            If you read only Mark, Matthew and Luke, skip all the magical stuff, you get a Jesus that’s more humanist than God-son. There’s some good stuff in John as well, but it’s like eating bangus there, you have to keep on plucking out the bones. But the point is don’t bother with Paul’s letters.

            So different interpretations elicit different dogmas. But Humanism, then and now, have been compatible with various faiths, they are not exclusive. But because faith is easier without the use of human reason, less inclined individuals will opt for the less rational expressions of faith, delusion vs. reason.

            A reasonable person will know the difference between faith and delusion. That’s not to say most of the faithful aren’t delusional, because that’s also a very real component to this. But faith and reason can be reconciled, many reasonable faithful individuals have, these days they represent the minority not the majority.

            When Germany during WWII was trying to make an atom bomb, their scientists poured over the Vedic texts. When the Americans were the first, Oppenheimer quoted Vishnu, surely because of all the ex-German scientists at his disposal: “Now I am become Death, the Destroyer of Worlds.”

            • edgar lores says:


              There are many interpretations of Christianity, and I myself have my own radical interpretation… as yours is.

              It is true that John 3:16 is not something Jesus said… but it is consistent with the last sentence of the preceding verse which is a “direct” Jesus quote.

              You have gone meta. If one denies the verse, then which other verse is not acceptable? On what truth does the Bible stand?

              And if one denies that specific verse, one denies the whole of the Christian salvation paradigm — as it is conventionally understood, taught and transmitted.

              The centrality of Christianity lies in Jesus, and the centrality of Jesus is his death on the cross for the redemption of the sins of mankind that they may have eternal life. This is the core message of John 3:16.

              My original point was that Christianity is exclusionary (of nonbelievers, thieves, liars, adulterers and LGBTs) and, therefore, is not all-embracing as secular humanism would be.

              • “The centrality of Christianity lies in Jesus, and the centrality of Jesus is his death on the cross for the redemption of the sins of mankind that they may have eternal life.”

                This centrality, IMHO, is up for grabs, hence interpretations and hence the popularity right now of Pope Francis who is preaching not of exclusion but inclusion. Exclusionary is easy, it’s basically bleacher-thinking (yaaaay!!! for us, booooo!!! for them), and it works with the less discerning among us, because it does satiate our sense of belongingness within groups.

                But once more people are prone to reason and the use of rational thought processes, like in Europe and the US (although the Bible belt has been pushing back), the whole notion of belief as part of a skewed system of rewards and punishment, both eternal, become dubious. So it’s up for grabs, and Pope Francis, although careful in his political maneuverings, as any pilot of a big ship in shallow waters must do.

                And it’s not just the Catholic Pope, other Christians have become inclusive, shifting their thinking more along the lines of Humanist ethos. Islam is a long way now, but before oil was found in Arabia, thus empowering Wahhabi Islam by way of petro-dollars, Sufism was the most popular interpretation, which espouses inclusivity. And when you line up these faiths, compare and contrast honestly thru text and history, they all go back to Buddhist precepts, which is to have less and serve people more.

                Christian centrality need not be John 3:16, is my point here.

                To connect this to the fracking thread and the stewardship thread. Filipinos need to start thinking for themselves, this returns us to being discerning readers of the press or any corpus of knowledge for that matter.

                Most Filipinos are devout Catholics, yet next to zero read the Bible much less the New Testament. They don’t read and interpret for themselves, relying instead on the act of going to church rather than actually listening to the lessons taught-and many times the lessons taught in church are absurd, ie. the typhoon happened because you didn’t vote for this guy or that. That kind of absurdity, and that’s the accepted norm.

                So there’s again a positive loop here.

              • edgar lores says:


                As I said there can be many radical interpretations of Christianity, but your insistence that John 3:16 is NOT the core of Christianity is misplaced.

                To reinterpret it in any other way than in the conventional accepted sense is to reject the role of Jesus and, therefore, to reject Christianity. Any other reinterpretation would make Christianity no longer Christianity.

                Sure there are many Christians who do not adhere to all the tenets and precepts of the faith, who are inhumane at one end and “humanistic” at the other end, but not one would deny the core message of John 3:16. If they do deny, they would not be Christians.

                The inclusionary drive of Francis is mere facade, a tourniquet to staunch the flow away from the church. It’s more soft approach, tone and style than anything else. He says one thing, and the Vatican goes, “No, no, he doesn’t mean that.” It’s all talk; there is no substance to it. Proof: Has any church dogma or doctrine been changed?

              • Guys (and gals) this is a very fruitful dialogue and we can fill this whole thread with interpretations, whether popular ones or radical ones. For example, more Evangelical Christians here are a lot more accepting of gays, more Christians here focus on having less and doing more, they are a lot more open to stewardship of the environment, maybe not completely denying John 3:16, but shifting the focus from this doctrine to the other more relevant doctrine–have less, do more.

                Unlike the Catholic church, Protestants here are less inclined to the top-down hierarchal approach. Maybe you are correct and maybe Pope Francis is just merely performing an elaborate PR stunt to get numbers up, but compare him to the past popes, maybe except for John XXIII, his deeds align more with having less stuff and more serving of people. We can argue Biblical, Textual criticism all day long, but that is basically the point here–

                having less stuff and more service to people, how many in the Philippines can say they practice this very Christian tenet? Not very much, and all of us can agree here.

                So my focus isn’t so much faith and the doctrines and dogmas of faith, but how to convert all that into practice.

                If Filipinos are a lot more inclined to magical thinking, then Catholic leaders will say asinine stuff and no one improves. Kinda like Manny Pacquiao’s mom doing her magical acts during many of his fights. I noticed Filipinos were involved in cults or organizations that cater to cult of personalities-type organizations. So a simple adjustment of focus (if denial is too strong a word) will do the Catholic faith there a lot of good–which is what we are seeing here both Catholics and Christians (Protestants) whether one says denial or a shift of focus, intentionality of deeds have changed for the better when Christians (All) shift their focus from belief=heaven, to having less and doing more=heaven.

                But remember that is the only detailed response that cannot be re-interpreted vs. soteriology of belief=heaven, when the guy asks Jesus what can I do to go to heaven? get rid of your things and follow me, in service to others. Everything else is too abstract and hence relegated to interpretation, but having less stuff and doing more for people–you can’t get anymore direct than that.

                Mary, you’re appealing to authority I don’t recognize, so forgive me if I don’t comment further on all your points above. Just this point since it’s related,

                Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

                Where is current Christian soteriology in that sentence? That belief alone equals heaven. It maybe obvious to you, but if you dissect that statement, without Paul’s version of Jesus transposed, then it’s not so cut and dry. But having less stuff and serving people is clear as day. Same sentiment for John 3:16. Again interpretations matter.

              • edgar lores says:

                “…intentionality of deeds have changed for the better when Christians (All) shift their focus from belief=heaven, to having less and doing more=heaven.”

                After all that discussion, we come full circle to Micha’s point: “Humanism, a more coherent and reality-based form of faith.”

                If I may be allowed to paraphrase her point into the form of a question: Why not completely eschew belief=heaven because it not only detracts but makes impossible the realization of heaven=earth?

              • “a question: Why not completely eschew belief=heaven because it not only detracts but makes impossible the realization of heaven=earth?”


                That’s now a theological point, and eschewing one over the other assumes correct interpretation. I can argue that John 3:16 is not from Jesus, and also argue that having less, doing more=heaven and that was actually Jesus’ point, not so much Paul’s belief=heaven, but in the end I don’t know, and there’s no way to prove my interpretation.

                So that’s where faith comes in, which can take a variety of forms we’ve already listed. Micha assumes a certain level of confidence, I don’t. Beyond your 5 (hell, even 6 senses), anything goes. Hence the compatibility of Humanism to other faiths, which simply means using human reason.

                To Mary’s point, on seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit, is (like Micha’s point) assumes a certain level of authority–that you know the Holy Spirit to be true and that the Holy Spirit is infallible, when in fact the doctrine for the Holy Trinity was officialized about 400 hundred years after Jesus died, after a lot of drama.

                That to me isn’t reasonable. For example Hercules and Helen of Troy were supposed to be begotten from Greek gods and those stories can be traced back around the same time the Old Testament was written, same with Vedic texts, so on what grounds can you say this is so and that is so, but not this.

                So my point all along has been that where human reason reaches a limit, people have to rely on faith and these stories that create meaning for us have to then be entertained, but the fact that you can’t use divine guidance of the Holy Spirit to interpret Vedic or Ancient Greek texts, means the Holy Spirit is biased, hence an appeal to an authority not universally recognize.

                For example how exactly would one use the guidance of the Holy Spirit when determining if other holy texts from the same age is kosher or not?

                Micha’s point seem to assume that Humanism was a superior faith. And that comparison doesn’t strike me a reasonable, since you have to disprove other faiths to make that assumption work, and there’s no way of doing that.

                So it’s false equivalency, that Humanism when compared to other faiths is somehow superior–simply because Humanism isn’t a type of faith. So to Micha’s point, I reject that Humanism is a form of faith, to me Humanism is merely the use of human intellect, which you can then compare to other pursuits of human intellect, but not to faith.

              • edgar lores says:

                “Micha’s point seem to assume that Humanism was a superior faith.”

                False logic? Use Occam’s Razor.

              • “Humanism does not postulate the existence of a deity or deities. Therefore, it is one assumption less than all religions. It posits that “human beings are capable of being ethical and moral without religion or a god.” – (Wikipedia) as posted by sir edgar lores

                I sincerely hope that the majority of mankind will not be for humanism ONLY, if the above explanation of the term is absolutely true.

                In that explanation, I will the assume that its proponents would like a Godless society, they are depending on the principle that “human beings are capable of being ethical and moral without religion or a god.” We all know that the human being is not perfect. We all see and observe several proofs of that all around. Without God, each one will go his own way trusting his own understanding of being ethical and moral. Without God, he will not fear the consequence of what he is doing. We all hear a common excuse – Sorry, tao lang.

                The Bible is a rich source of knowledge and wisdom – to be ethical and moral:

                Proverbs 9:10 –

                9 Give instruction to a wise man and he will be still wiser, Teach a righteous man and he will increase his learning.

                10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.

                11 For by me your days will be multiplied, And years of life will be added to you.…

                Matthew 22:37
                Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’

                Matthew 22:39
                And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

                The love of God is the first and great commandment, and the sum of all the commands of the first table. Our love of God must be sincere, not in word and tongue only. All our love is too little to bestow upon him, therefore all the powers of the soul must be engaged for him, and carried out toward him. To love our neighbour as ourselves, is the second great commandment. There is a self-love which is corrupt, and the root of the greatest sins, and it must be put off and mortified; but there is a self-love which is the rule of the greatest duty: we must have a due concern for the welfare of our own souls and bodies. And we must love our neighbour as truly and sincerely as we love ourselves; in many cases we must deny ourselves for the good of others. By these two commandments let our hearts be formed as by a mould. – Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

                I belong to a Christ centered, bible based born again Christian denomination.

              • edgar lores says:


                Fear not. We have adapted the first and second greatest commandments into a secular setting.

                Follow this thread:


              • Di ba ako’y tao lang na
                Nadadarang at natutukso rin – excerpts from the song “Hiram” by Zsa Padilla

              • No more reply button so I have to copy paste here for easy reference, thank you for the link.

                edgar lores says:


                Fear not. We have adapted the first and second greatest commandments into a secular setting.

                Follow this thread:


                What a lively, informative and refreshing thread, the whole blog article is, actually… I miss cha and chit. and cornball here… You guys are all articulate, I enjoyed the wit and wisdom.

                I completely missed this particular blog and I wondered why until I saw the date. That’s the month that I had the Medical City as my forwarding address hahaha.. otherwise I would have joined.

            • i7sharp says:

              LCpl_X, Edgar,

              As for me, I believe the Bible defines Christianity – a term derived from the name of Jesus Christ, the Creator of the world.

              • Proof: Has any church dogma or doctrine been changed?


                He would be killed if he changed dogma so soon, hence changing dogma through practice, ie. accepting gays, Atheists, having less and doing more. This may not be complete changes, but does lay the ground work for another interpretation of Christian soteriology–that of having less and doing more, which is consistent with other faiths, both big and small (That’s why the Haj in Mecca is performed the way it is performed–with less and focus on people).

                So no, no church dogma/doctrine has been changed, but the Pope’s actions (and interviews) at least undermines if not completely changed Church doctrine. The question is if the Catholic church in the Philippines is aligned with their new Pope’s thoughts on having less and doing more–maybe the people, but Catholic clergy I’ve come in contact with, I doubt it.

              • edgar lores says:

                Francis is NOT accepting of the “intrinsically disordered.” That is a furphy.

              • “To reinterpret it in any other way than in the conventional accepted sense is to reject the role of Jesus and, therefore, to reject Christianity.”


                What is convention but essentially just about a bunch of guys agreeing on something. Christians didn’t all always agree that God, Jesus & the Holy Spirit was one and the same, so why is it so impossible to believe that this interpretation and thus dogma is also subject to change? Remember everything is up for grabs.

                For one interpretation to succeed for another, use of violence has to be justified (heathens, hypocrites) and backing of powerful kings and queens have to be sought and solidified. So it’s not so much what is convention and what isn’t, but rather who is more committed.

                Commitment doesn’t necessarily equal correct interpretation of scripture,
                it just means one school of thought was more committed than the other. So again all is still up for grabs.

              • edgar lores says:

                “What is convention but essentially just about a bunch of guys agreeing on something.”

                We are not arguing convention. We are arguing about core definition.

                And, yes, if there are no core definitions, then there is no clarity. And if there is no clarity, then, yes, everything is up for grabs. And that ultimately equates to anarchy… an anarchy interspersed by temporary dominion of the temporary strongest.

                This, I am afraid, is the current situation.

              • We are not arguing convention. We are arguing about core definition.

                And, yes, if there are no core definitions, then there is no clarity. And if there is no clarity, then, yes, everything is up for grabs. And that ultimately equates to anarchy… an anarchy interspersed by temporary dominion of the temporary strongest.


                These core definitions were agreed upon de jure by conventions and de facto by riots, violence in the streets.

                So they are up for grabs, constantly. And yes that is my point that much of this relies on chaos, in a constant flux of dispersed ideas , to consolidation of ideas, and back again to dispersed ideas. That in essence is the nature of power.

                The sense of clarity is nothing more that consolidation of ideas. It’s an illusion, a Joseph Smith (Mormon Church) or an L.Ron Hubbard (Scientology) can just as easily come into the picture and just as simply convert people, by way of coercion or a good lunch.

              • edgar lores says:

                Name one Christian denomination that does not accept the salvation paradigm, that is, the promise of Heaven. (Caveat: salvation may not necessarily be through Jesus.)

              • edgar lores says:

                Further: If clarity is an illusion, why are we discussing anything at all?

              • Why should something emanating from the bible be subject to an approval as doctrines to be recognized. The bible was written thousands of years ago, so you mean to say that if it has been approved and recognized 400 years ago, then it’s only then the faithful should start to believe and be guided accordingly. I find it unacceptable, so now maybe, like Jose Rizal, I will be considered heretic.

                The bible said that Jesus told his apostles to wait as God will give them a gift when he returns to Heaven. That gift was the Holy Spirit which enabled the apostles to speak and understand different languages to the amazement of the others, to heal the sick like Jesus did, to have a gift of words so much so that multitudes were converted.

                No other books can compare with the current best sellers. It has endured the test of times. It does need to be declared a doctrine by some modern or ancient church to be universally recognized.

              • jameboy says:

                “…..Jesus Christ, the Creator of the world.”
                I thought he has a Father who created everything’s, including him? 👼

              • i7sharp says:


                These are two of the verses that say Jesus Christ is God and is the Creator of the world:
                John 1:1-3

                I use the KJB only.
                One of the sites where you can read it.

                My notes on the KJB (aka KJV) can be found here:

              • jameboy says:

                1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

                Beginning: Word
                Word with God
                Word was God
                He was with God
                Through him everything were made
                Without him, there’s nothing.

                Question: Who was the ‘Word’?
                Who was God?
                Who was He?

                Why too much play on words? 👀

              • jameboy says:

                I think all things (God, religion, etc.) we’re talking about comes from our sense of fear of the unknown. We want our physical existence to have a sense of mission or relevance so we connect spirituality to it. The very essence if our physical being extinguished by death cannot be accepted as the end of everything. So the struggle continues even in death.

                Our need to continue our existence drives us to think of the whys and hows and the very convenient reason to pursue such thinking is the creation of a supreme being.

                Everything is human, everything by man. ☝

              • i7sharp says:

                “Everything is human, everything by man. ☝”

                Please tell us about “ancestors.”
                Where did yours come from and how, for example, did they learn
                to feel, to think, to love, …

                btw, regarding your question about “God”:
                The very beginning of the Bible,
                Genesis 1:1,
                reads thus:
                “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”

              • “Micha’s point seem to assume that Humanism was a superior faith.”

                False logic? Use Occam’s Razor.


                If you’re comparing two similar things, Occam’s Razor would be appropriate, but we are comparing the use of human intellect vs. faith, faith being something not yet lit by human intellect. Example, if archaeologists discover Jesus’ bones hidden somewhere, and beyond doubt it is somehow proven as his, then the Jesus faith comes under the purview of human intellect, definitively. Otherwise, human intellect and faith are not two of the same thing, not even similar, hence Occam’s Razor cannot be employed. How would you employ Occam’s Razor here?

                Name one Christian denomination that does not accept the salvation paradigm, that is, the promise of Heaven. (Caveat: salvation may not necessarily be through Jesus.)

       These guys are the closest to Origen’s thoughts on Christian soteriology. This is Origen,

                Further: If clarity is an illusion, why are we discussing anything at all?

                We’re clarifying our thoughts for this discussion, which is productive. The clarity I was speaking of as illusion was convention, ie “History is a set of lies agreed upon.”–Napoleon Bonaparte.

                Or simply just dogma agreed upon. Why wasn’t Origen’s soteriology accepted as the preferred dogma? Surely, he read John’s gospel and Paul’s letters. Everyone’s happy, everyone goes to heaven. Because exclusivity sells, because exclusivity equals power.

              • edgar lores says:

                Thank you.

                1. This discussion was triggered by Micha’s comment: “Humanism, a more coherent and reality-based form of faith.”

                A. ON OCCAM’S RAZOR

                2. From Wikipedia, Occam’s Razor is: “The principle states that among competing hypotheses that predict equally well, the one with the fewest assumptions should be selected. Other, more complicated solutions may ultimately prove to provide better predictions, but—in the absence of differences in predictive ability—the fewer assumptions that are made, the better.”

                2.1. Note that Occam’s Razor can be applied to not just “two similar things” but several “competing hypothesis.”

                2.2. We are comparing two kinds of faith: (a) religious faith and (b) Humanism. Micha describes the latter as “a more coherent and reality-based form of faith.”

                2.2.1. I am aware you say that Humanism is not a type of faith. Arguably, it is. Humanism does not offer a comprehensive solution; it offers an approach to a solution of mankind’s problems. It is faith in man’s rationality to overcome.

                2.2.2. There are many kinds of religious faiths but, in this instance, we can take them to be similar in that they postulate the existence of a deity or deities. (Buddhism is an exception; some consider Buddhism to be more philosophy than religion.)

                2.2.3. Humanism does not postulate the existence of a deity or deities. Therefore, it is one assumption less than all religions. It posits that “human beings are capable of being ethical and moral without religion or a god.” (Wikipedia)

                3. The statement “Micha’s point seems to assume that Humanism was a superior faith” may be an overstatement. I would say Micha’s point is that Humanism is a more logical faith. Why so?

                3.1. Micha sees that religions are based on non-scientific “delusions” and that religions have been the cause of endless strife, including armed strife.

                3.2. From her view, if we discard religion and turn to Humanism, one cause of strife – perhaps the major cause — would be eliminated. This is not to say that strife will not arise under a Humanistic society. It is only to say that that one cause of strife will no longer rear its ugly head.

                3.3. Note her use of the term “coherent.” This is a very important concept and it aligns with Occam’s Razor.

                3.4. Her proposition sounds entirely reasonable to me.

                3.4.1. You don’t in fact have to disprove religious faith to say humanism is reasonable. It is sufficient to recognize that religion is a source of unnecessary conflict.

                3.4.2. And the burden of proof is on religion to prove its claims. As you say, there is no way of disproving religious faith… because one cannot prove a negative.



                4. This Church still adheres to the salvation paradigm. They believe in reconciliation with God, which is Heaven. They believe in universal salvation. They just don’t believe in Hell.

                5. You will note my caveat. I was very aware of this church. Some years ago when I took a quiz at to find out what faith I belonged to, the answer – to my great surprise — was Unitarian Universalist. Before that, I hadn’t heard of this faith.

                C. ON CLARITY

                6. Thank you for the clarification.

                D. ON ORIGEN

                7. Apart from noting a Buddhist influence in his thinking (in the notions of transmigration, karma and the Logos as the Unmanifest), I have no comment. I agree there is substance to your point on power. The more reason to turn towards Humanism, would you not say?

              • edgar,

                I think we agree more than disagree. We just have two different definitions of humanism and faith.

                I don’t belong to the Universalist church, but dated a girl once who did. I was a vocal Atheist then, have since become an agnostic since. From various discussions of members of that church, who themselves were from a variety of faiths (although mostly Christians), I’ve become more docile in attacking other faiths–I used to think that people who entertained such delusions were intellectually inferior.

                So when comparing faiths (if we both agree on Humanism as faith, for the sake of discussion let’s say we do) many of which rely on myths, poetry to convey truths of the human condition, some will be deemed less, others more, and if we only base our comparison on the scientific method or logic as the pinnacle of human intellect, then we have to ask if that comparison merits the superiority you have attached to Humanism.


                My respect for Humanism as a process and not faith, prevents me from comparing it to other faiths. That’s my personal take on this. But from a more practical side, I’ve been to the Mid East, SE Asia and Japan, from a diplomatic point of view, people in general don’t take too kindly when you wage a frontal attack on their faith. The only way to convince people of faith, that Humanism is superior, is not by comparing it as a competing form of faith, but a process altogether different–a process you can use within your faith, with this assumption: “A mind, once expanded by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions”― Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

       That organization represents what I think youre espousing here–that Humanism is superior. Here they are running ads on TV and magazines, which is understandable since the Evangelical block by means of lobbying and funding is powerful. But when you tout Atheism, by extension Humanism, you are not helping Humanism’s cause, but rather minimizing it–this is the reason for my disagreement.

                Lastly, as for the Universalist’s view of heaven, they simply put it this way: when you die, there’s only 3 places you can go, nowhere you just rot, or you go to a worst place, or go to a better place, we as Universalists just reject the first two. My point is that you don’t have to have to faith to comprehend that very basic concept of death and where you go after, even a Humanist can entertain those three possibilities, but Humanism doesn’t bother to attempt to define the notion of after life, because there’s just not enough data, it’s beyond our senses–

                it takes humongous intellectual balls to understand that, and then feel NO need to control that truth by way of delusions.

                Hence the main difference for me, when we speak of faith and Humanism. You feel the need to compare it to other faiths, my confidence in Humanism isn’t in the compare and contrast game but in action–not by comparing it with other faiths, but rather by injecting it to other faiths, so as to improve minds… this is how Humanism has always improved the human condition, and shed light on ignorance, subversively–not as a competing faith.

              • edgar lores says:

                Thank you.

                If you read my other posts on this blog, you will see that I am a synthesizer. I am a pluralist and I accept that all religious experiences are valid. Not only that. That the universe is big enough and strange enough for all religions — and Humanism — to be true, not only here but cosmologically speaking as well.

                Yes, it takes humongous intellectual balls to confront the notion of the possibility of no afterlife, and not to have the comfort of religion. But Humanism takes the view that we can create a better world here and now, a kinder one, a gentler one… without the distraction and hindrance of religion. You say that the humane strain of Humanism should infect exclusive religions, and I agree.

                There are religions that are not exclusionary. Buddhism for one, and Hinduism for another. All I am saying, and asking, is that we take Humanism in the same vein.

              • I agree there is substance to your point on power. The more reason to turn towards Humanism, would you not say?


                Not so, any system whether based on faith or reason can be used as a means to expand and project power. When it comes to power, the most committed wins, many times that means the ability to use violence.

              • edgar lores says:

                Power is not inherently evil. It is just potential. And potential can be turned towards good or towards bad.

                It depends on the wielders of power. And there have been good and benevolent rulers in history.

              • 2.2.1. I am aware you say that Humanism is not a type of faith. Arguably, it is. Humanism does not offer a comprehensive solution; it offers an approach to a solution of mankind’s problems. It is faith in man’s rationality to overcome.


                Faith in God and faith in man are two very different things, although you can use reason to understand both.

                Faith in God, implies the understanding of that which is supernatural, faith in man implies that which is natural, limited to the 5 senses.

                You are transposing two very different concepts of faith here, edgar, ie. I believe in God vs. I believe in you.

              • edgar lores says:

                Not necessarily. Your logic is based on a dichotomy which may be false. That dichotomy is that Man and God are separate entities.

                It is entirely possible that God is in Man, and that Man is in God.

                So the equation can become: I believe in the God which is within Me, and I believe in the God which is within You.


              • It is entirely possible that God is in Man, and that Man is in God.

                I agree with you here, edgar, this was the lesson of Buddhism, the possibility of man becoming God, as opposed to the Jesus story, later adjusted to God becoming man. Not only is one more reasonable, but it is more practical, since the possibility of all of us becoming greater is inherent.

                We differ in application only…

                There are religions that are not exclusionary. Buddhism for one, and Hinduism for another. All I am saying, and asking, is that we take Humanism in the same vein.

                And this is why I don’t feel at ease with the notion of comparing Humanism to other faiths. There’s the ideal and there’s reality. Christianity, had Origen been the norm, would also have been non-exclusionary.

                Buddhism in Thailand is mandatory, and the majority of young monks deal drugs and porn. Buddhists are responsible for burning Muslims in Burma. The current PM of India was complicit in inciting several riots which resulted in thousands of Muslim deaths.

                Other faiths promote magical thinking, when people are prone to magical thinking, they will always be open to doing crazy things, such is the nature of magical thinking.

                Power is not inherently evil. It is just potential. And potential can be turned towards good or towards bad.

                I agree, but thus far our only examples of subscribed Atheists wielding power are few and they have all for the most part waged considerable suffering to humanity.

                Unless you can cite examples of Humanists wielding power which resulted in no blood lost, I know of none, the best course of action is to not be overly optimistic of Humanism’s potential.

                Maybe Humanists can ensure small wars occur instead of bigger wars, but the difference then is in degree not kind. Maybe to ensure these powerful Humanists remain unsullied is by ensuring the power they wield is small.

                I don’t share your optimism re Humanist in power, because the only truly peaceful people I know are the once who’ve done the most violent acts.

                Humanism though has endless potential, as long as it doesn’t become just another faith. As long as we recognize that a great majority of people NEED to know what will happen to them after death. And people who say that there is no NEED are automatically suspect.

                Hence the best application of Humanism is subtlety.

                But I’ll gladly take this difference in thought with you, edgar, since you represent the only Filipino Humanist I ‘know’.

                Most Filipinos I met were not only fastidiously devout in their rituals, but equally as ignorant of not only their own espoused religion but of others. My question to you now is how many are you in the Philippines? And is there a group of like minds there, or is this largely an individual pursuit?

              • edgar lores says:

                Thank you.

                1. We have advanced closer to a common understanding, but we are not THERE yet.

                2. As I reflect upon it, I do not think we will ever get THERE because there is something lacking in our methodology of thinking and discussion.

                3. Let me go meta and analyse part of it. The general pattern seems to be dialectical in nature like this:

                3.1. Someone makes a generalization (thesis) – be it an observation, a fact, a principle, or an ideal.
                3.2. Then another cites an exception either with the intention of (a) clarifying or expanding the generalization (co-thesis); or (b) disproving the generalization (antithesis). Usually it’s antithesis.
                3.3. Point and counterpoint follow.
                3.4. Sometimes a synthesis occurs but most often not.

                4. Example:

                4.1. Observer A agrees with Susan Sontag in her general observation that Buddhism is the “highest spiritual moment of humanity.”
                4.2. Observer B comes along and cites the exception that Buddhists are responsible for burning Muslims in Burma.
                4.3. Observer A counters that the Buddhists in Burma are not real Buddhists because they are not following the primary ethical precept of that religion, which is “Do no harm”.

                5. Item 4.2 is an inductive variant of argument by exception. You will find this type of argumentation everywhere in this post, in this blogsite and in the whole of the blogosphere and social media. (This is why discussions are endless.)

                6. I will posit the following four axioms:

                6.1. Generalizations (universals) have a semblance or kernel of truth.
                6.2. All generalizations have exceptions (positive/negative particulars). (Including this item perhaps.)
                6.3. Exceptions do not generally disprove the generalization. However, an exception can disprove the generalization.
                6.4. If an exception disproves the generalization, then the generalization merely had a semblance, but not a kernel, of truth.

                7. To expand on the axioms:

                7.1. A generalization has validity (or invalidity) in terms of truth. I will define “truth” as conformance to reality or, to be more precise, conformance to our current understanding of reality (episteme). And by reality I refer to phenomena in space and in time — past, present and future.

                7.2. An exception, a negative one (untrue), does not necessarily invalidate the generalization. “Buddhists burning Muslims in Burma” does not invalidate the generalization that Buddhism is conceivably the highest of religions. In the same manner that “Philippine Catholic senators stealing the country blind” does not invalidate Catholicism, much less Christianity.

                7.3. An exception, a positive one (true), may indeed invalidate the generalization. It was thought before that all swans were white, so the general proposition that all swans are white was generally accepted as true and was valid. Then in 1790 black swans were discovered in Australia… and this exception invalidated the general proposition. (I will not go into the subtleties that the proposition was invalid from the start. Subjective reality, whether individual or collective, trumps objective reality. And a thing may be said to not exist until it is posited or discovered.)

                7.4. A generalization that is not invalidated by exceptions is a positive generalization. Conversely, a generalization that can be invalidated by an exception is a negative generalization.

                8. Let me go meta further one level up.

                9. The generalization and the exception(s) are products of thought as the mind contemplates phenomena (reality). And thoughts are the product of how we see, which is our conditioning. And our conditioning is the totality of our culture, the influence of our parents, our peers, our church, our education, our club, our society and all the things we have been exposed to: the shows we have watched, the books we have read, the websites we have surfed, the conversations we have had. This conditioning constitutes the prism through which we see things. (Our subjective prisms, both collective and individual, do not carry the same colors, the same hues, the same intensities, and the same order.)

                9.1. Thought is a tool. It may be used to form solutions… but it can also be a problem.

                9.2. Obviously, American sensibilities are different from Filipino sensibilities, and Mariano’s sensibilities are quite, quite different from others.

                10. So the question arises: Can we see without conditioning? Can the doors of perception be cleansed? Poets (Blake) and mystics (Krishnamurti) think they can be; I agree with them. But on the evidence, the general answer is no.

                9.2. Thought is our primary modality of consciousness. Perhaps it shouldn’t be.

                10.1. If we cannot see beyond conditioning, how do we determine what generalizations are positive (true) and which ones are negative (false)? Similarly, we can ask the same question of exceptions.

                10.2. Beyond the empiricism of scientific observation and verification, and beyond verification by statistical data, we cannot so determine except by intuition or logic or consensus. None are conclusive determinants. Faith is a conclusive determinant – subjectively speaking.

                11. The value of dialogue is that generalizations can be buttressed by logic and can be determined to be positive or negative by agreement. But for logic to work it must be consensually accepted. Where agreement cannot be reached, we will have to blithely deny the Other or accept the plurality of truth. I hereby call this point the point of no returns (plural) because there is longer any gain that can be derived… at the present moment. (I am eternally optimistic.)

                11.1. We may have reached that point. So I will not offer any counterpoints except this: It may be that no Humanist ruler can avoid the shedding of blood until a great majority accept diversity and pluralism, both secular and sectarian, and practice Humanism in full consciousness. (Ashoka is an example of a warrior-king turned Humanist.)

                12. As to your last questions, I do not know of any Unitarian Universalists in the Philippines… and I have moved far, far away from that position. I believe I constitute a majority of one.

                And I thank you for the privilege.

              • It may be that no Humanist ruler can avoid the shedding of blood until a great majority accept diversity and pluralism, both secular and sectarian, and practice Humanism in full consciousness. (Ashoka is an example of a warrior-king turned Humanist.)


                edgar, I totally agree. We get the leaders we deserve.

                Right after high school I went straight to bootcamp, I figured college wasn’t for me. When they asked me what my religious preference was, I said Atheist (that’s how sure I was then). And the clerk typed No Religious Preference. I would realize later on that it was actually the most apt identification, the opposite of having a particular religious preference wasn’t Atheist or Agnostic, rather it’s No Religious Preference.

                A few years later, Atheist and Agnostic became a choice. Many opted for these choices, as opposed to the general No Religious Preference–understandably so, you don’t get so many choices in the military, when they ask you which you prefer and there’s all these choices you become excited at the chance to define yourself.

                A few years after that, suicides and drug use and other illicit activities became rampant as a result of the wars and deployment tempo, and in trying to fight this scourge a variety of studies were done. Several found a positive correlation to the problems at hand with the lack of religious preference, either No Religious Preference or Atheist or Agnostic–and now Humanist.

                So these studies were sent up to all the various commands in an effort to easily identify potential problems. Word got out, and civilian atheist/Humanist groups cried discrimination. Religious groups found out, and so used the studies as evidence to the dangers and public safety issue of non-belief.

                Marines, especially at 18 or 20 years of age when they choose those religious/non-religious identifiers, don’t really know about atheism, or agnosticism, or humanism, aside from the most simplistic definitions, and would extend that to everyone else who label themselves such. It’s largely an individual pursuit.

                When these labels and identifiers get used willy-nilly, you end up misrepresenting your beliefs, and give more fodder for believers to denigrate the concept of Humanism, Agnostic, Atheist. The ideal is for these concepts to elevate man, but at the granular level, you don’t easily get to slap either title on your forehead and thus you become it, it’s a very abstract individual journey.

                I have still yet to fully define or corral my beliefs and I hope I never do. I’m looking at my dog tags right now, and I’m fine with just NO RELIGIOUS PR.

                I offer this story not so much as a counterpoint but as a sort of fable about self-identification, and the problems of taking high abstract concepts and making them easy titles you haphazardly slap on a dog-tag, your personnel records and yourself.

                I do agree with your ideals here, my experience just don’t confirm with your optimism when equating concepts to religious titles (the ideas, the ideals I’m more optimistic of), but let me turn this around back to you. This was a great discussion, but I was more taken with the way you think, so I did check out your link above and I also found your Ethics articles.

                I’m attempting to write an article about an ACLU in the Philippines. In researching, and also in past threads, education again and again is clearly where we can fix the bulk of the problems there. I was lucky right after high school, the people in charge of me in the Marines taught me the Greek Classics, I also got a heavy dose of Japanese martial culture and philosophy. I was blessed with a great base library.

                My question to you is how you came to think this way, how did you sharpen your thought process. Thought is tool, I agree, I would go further to describe it as weapon. Because if the Philippines is to be a truly worthy ally of the US visavis China, then the more of you there are the easier this alliance would be, then truly of two nations of equal standing.

                How were you educated?

                Did you have to leave the Philippines to learn how to think this way?

                Do you think it’s possible to re-create your education now in the Philippines?

                How would you do this?

                I know there are no public libraries in the Philippines, can your education be done by those who will only gain a high school education?

                What books were available in the Philippines, still now, that you can list as transformational?

                What books would you recommend now?

                Were there groups in the Philippines that helped you hone your intellect?

                As one of the solutions to the ACLU article, I’m trying to describe a curriculum that would not only teach wisdom and character, but the sharpening of intellect, which all ideally should lead to moral courage, which is what’s lacking amongst lawyers and journalists there.

              • edgar lores says:

                Thank you.

                1. I totally agree with you about labelling. I do not know what I am. I have Humanistic tendencies but am not a Humanist. I have Buddhistic tendencies but am not a Buddhist. And I have sexual tendencies but am not a maniac.

                2. Tough questions you ask. Where to begin?

                3. Let me begin with this delineation of my thinking process with respect to any issue:

                3.1. Note JoeAm’s comment in the last post of the thread: “I know some people are naturally gifted in cognition, and I suspect it can also be taught.”

                3.2. This begs the question: Is cognitive ability Nature or Nurture?

                4. I think it is both. Brief answers:

                4.1. Nature: In the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), I am an introvert so I am naturally inclined to introspection. In the Enneagram, I am a Reformer (rational and idealistic) and a Thinker (perceptive and cerebral).

                4.2. Nurture: I would say my formal education has little to do with my bent. I read Political Science at a second-rate university. Perhaps more importantly, I had a professor in the Humanities who became a close personal friend, and who greatly influenced my taste and appreciation in the finer things in life. However, he did not influence my thinking per se.

                4.3. I am largely self-taught… by introspection and intuition. My mental model of enquiry I would trace to three sources: (a) the variety of viewpoints about life and the universe from my voluminous readings; (b) the variety of religious experiences; and (c) my profession as a computer analyst.

                5. Reading. I can no longer recall the reasons why certain books influenced me except to say that they broadened my vision. Fiction, works of the imagination, may have contributed more to the broadening of my horizons. Here is a smattering of a baker’s dozen of nonfiction books that molded me, in no particular order:

                o Fromm. Erich: “Escape from Freedom”
                o Hoffer, Erich: “The True Believer”
                o Frankl, Victor: “Man’s Search for Meaning”
                o Krishnamurti, Jiddu: “The Awakening of Intelligence” (and all his other books)
                o Pirzig, Robert: “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance”
                o Isaacson, Walter: “Einstein: His Life and Universe”
                o Nouy, Pierre Lecomte du: “Human Destiny”
                o Pearce, Joseph Chilton: “The Crack in the Cosmic Egg”
                o Capra, Fritjof: “The Tao of Physics”
                o Lightman, Alan: “The Accidental Universe”
                o Palmo, Jetsunma Tenzin: “Into the Heart of Life”
                o Roberts, Jane: “Seth Speaks”
                o Jung, C.G.: “The Undiscovered Self”

                6. Religion. I have a checkered history in religion, which makes one skeptical of absolutes… and the ultimate ground of being. In the last decade or so, I have become enamored of Buddhistic thinking with its primary approach of enquiry. Instead of saying, “Do not steal,” it asks, “What are the root causes of stealing?” Instead of invoking the imperative mode, it invokes the interrogative mode. This is not to say that the religion is not prescriptive, but the analytical mode and the nuances of Buddhist thought are astonishing and penetrative, and the consequent clarity is astonishing and persuasive. Note that countries with Buddhist majorities are not particularly advanced economically speaking. But then, in spite of Jesus’ spurning of the rich and riches, America has turned Christianity into a religion of prosperity… and where America leads many follow.

                7. Computer analyst. At the core of the computer profession is Systems Thinking. Analysis under this methodology is not simple linear cause-and-effect, but what du Nouy calls “process thinking” that considers overall scope; alternative approaches; multiple components, variables and parameters; and their interactions. It is cyclic, and includes control loops and feedback mechanisms.

                7.1. Systems thinking is goal oriented. It may be applicable to solving particular practical systemic problems but may not be applicable to theoretical problems. Buddhist thinking is arguably systems thinking, broader in scope as it examines the human condition, but even Buddhism shuns the theistic question.

                8. Whenever someone mentions education as the ultimate solution, an idea which I used to agree with, something in me now cringes. Who is going to teach? And what are they going to teach?

                8.1. There are few inspirational teachers. None of the books listed above can serve as a textbook.

                8.2. While some things from the above can be taught, such as systems thinking, it is not ultimately methodology that is important but life skills and attitude (or character in your terms). Given man’s contrariness, attitude is difficult to teach because there are certain assumptions (like concepts of virtue) that underlie it. These assumptions are mostly a matter of faith. (One example, in my case, is that the universe is purposive. Another is that truth is plural and even relative (postmodernism).)

                8.3. We have to recognize that not all men are educable to the same minimum level. Most people want certitude (and pleasure) in their lives and will never be comfortable with an open attitude of enquiry. (As you say it takes humongous balls not to have the comfort of religion.)

                8.3.1. I have always thought that education should discover the vocation of the individual. Psychological profiling and aptitude tests should be administered at regular intervals to guide the child’s path into a choice of vocation in consonance with the child’s natural preference. Some children know what they want to become at an early age (perhaps from parental orientation); but most don’t. Some find their true vocation after they have made a preliminary or even a secondary choice. All efforts of growth and development – whether as butcher, baker or candlestick maker — should be encouraged with no (or minimum) manipulation.

                8.3.2. There is nothing as distressing, unproductive and destructive as doing what one does not love for the whole of one’s life.

                9. I’m sorry. I may have confused you more than enlightened you. Formal education does not make the man; it only makes for livelihood. Character makes the man; character is destiny (Heraclitus). So, in the end, Nature, and not Nurture, wins.

                9.1. Although somewhere along the way education may spark the development of character. If it does, it may be a random stochastic thing. Perhaps coming from the military you might have a different view. Are elite forces made or chosen? I would think there’s a preliminary vetting process from the recruiting side and, on the individual side, a willingness or an ambition to join and even an eagerness to volunteer. Not all can be elite, but everyone can be the best… within their own capacity and capability. This is what education should bring forth.

              • edgar,

                On the nature vs. nurture point re the elite in the military. I’m on the side of nurture, both military and in forming depth of character.

                Once the Continental Army and Navy were stood up in 1775, the Navy formed the Marine Corps under the Navy. So the first “elite” unit in the US military is arguably the Marines. The first foreign military operation was undertaken in 1804 by former Tunis consul William Eaton, 8 US Marines and 2 Navy officers (along with local forces) to capture Tripoli (Libya).

                Fastforward today, and there is a Special Operations Command, with Navy SEALs, Army Rangers, Special Forces, even Marine Raiders under this one banner. These units have an extensive selection process to weed out unlikely candidates. They would be of the nature camp.

                The US Marine Corps, 1 of 4 military branches, is not exclusively elite like the units mentioned above. Marine culture is best described as inclusively elite, nurture is the underlying purpose of the indoctrination process, which is bootcamp (90%+ pass bootcamp, it’s not designed as a selection process).

                But of the 3 other branches, the Marine Corps stands-out, not because bootcamp is physically difficult (because Army runs a similar program, not as intense but close enough). The difference is in enculturation, basically every Marine becomes part of that 1775 Corps of Marines and all Marine past, present, future. The concept of elite isn’t selected out, but added in.

                Along with culture, is an almost singular sense of purpose which is the Marine fire team, everyone in infantry is in support of that smallest of unit; everyone not infantry but in combat arms (armored, artillery, tanks, etc.) is in support of the fire team; everyone not combat arms is in support of the fire team.

                So in the Marine Corps, unlike SOCOM, it is the culture, not so much the individual men, that represent the concept of elite. From that, eliteness seeps into individual Marines–don’t get me wrong many will just settle for simply basking in that concept, but many more internalize that elite ideal and live it.

                That’s the bias from which I’m coming from.

                I believe excellence in body and thought can be transferred–don’t have to be born with it.

                How is the question. And this is what I’m attempting to coax out of you. I can offer examples but it will be from an American and military experience. Someone (you) who came from the Philippine experience, developed a sharpened intellect, would be a better candidate to describe the replication of this education–

                and by education I mean the holistic development of said intellect, not just from formal schooling.

                So allow me to dig deeper here:

                “8. Whenever someone mentions education as the ultimate solution, an idea which I used to agree with, something in me now cringes. Who is going to teach? And what are they going to teach?”

                For say lawyers or journalists, or any other field, do you think this systems thinking approach can be taught? What you are describing seem similar to military mindset.

                As to your Who is going to teach? question, do you need a qualified teacher or is this undertaking since it was largely self-taught to you, best presented not so much by a traditional lecture type teacher, but more like waiters serving quality nutritious meals (buffet style) in a fine dining setting.

                The What are they gonna teach?, I was hoping you can explore further. Books and talking to people prepared me for going to the Middle East and SE Asia, but without experience on the ground, there would have been no galvanizing of thoughts for me.

                As for depth-of-character, in a very recent trip to Africa, I was standing at a busy intersection, when I saw a man with no legs attempt to cross the street. When in Rome… I figured some of the locals would help, I was hoping, but I wasn’t going to stick out,

                so I just kept watching, as the cripple neared the other side, sure enough a truck clips his arm and breaks it from the elbow down. Writhing in pain, people just kept on with their business. I know I was supposed to help, had it been back stateside, the whole intersection would have been at a stand still.

                I still get nightmares, not so much of what I witnessed, I’ve seen worst, but the fact that I didn’t do anything–simply carrying about 60 pounds of weight across pre-empting the bloody accident was all that was needed.

                So when I talk about ethics and character and wisdom, it doesn’t have to be constant, it can be conditional, but when you attempt to rationalize an incident when you’ve failed in front of yourself, you should be unsettled. How do you teach that?

                In the Philippines, I saw a homeless kid (could’ve been one of those kids JoeAm pictured above eating their rice) get beat up by older guys, 2 other homeless kids looked-on, his friends (maybe brothers). Every ounce in me wanted to get in there, but what if other variables presented themselves?

                Conjuring up that memory, I automatically fill with anger, again at having faltered, but more on the fact that this was accepted. So you see nature is a luxury we shouldn’t entertain when discussing solutions, because nurture is the only way out, we just need to figure out how. And then tackle the details.

                edgar, too much is at stake here to simply just say nature, so if you can dig more, please do. There’s gotta be a way to teach all this there. thanks.

              • edgar lores says:

                This discussion is going deeper and deeper.

                1. Before going back to the Nature vs. Nurture issue, let me add another source for my open-minded mentality. I mentioned three: reading, religion and profession. The fourth is trans-cultural shock.

                1.1. In Piaget’s stages of cognitive development, the concrete operational stage is between the ages of 7 to 12. In the preceding stage, the preoperational stage, a child is able to perform abstract reasoning, but thinking is largely based on intuition and not on complete logic. By age 7, a child has completely formed an understanding of the immediate world — his primary cosmic egg — the shell of which is bounded by parents, school, church, love and play activities.

                1.2. Imagine me then at age 8 being transported from the cocoon of Oahu to a primitive coastal town in northern Philippines. It was a leap from paradise to a hellhole, a beautiful hellhole maybe, but a hellhole nevertheless. A child is adaptable, but the culture shock I suffered at that pre-TV age was traumatic, and the tremors reverberated well into young adulthood.

                1.3. In the new global village with cutting-edge technology in communications, children are now exposed to the wider world at a young age. They are not so much affected by the vagaries of cultural diversity, indeed they may appreciate the novelties offered by other cultures, and even crave for them, but I think their moorings may not be too deep.

                1.4. The salutary effects of trans-cultural exposure can be seen in the heightened awareness of our overseas workers, although in my case the experience was retrogressive. From your stories, you yourself have learned much from your travels. These experiences of trans-cultural enlightenment should be incorporated into the curriculum at a deeper level than memorizing the countries of the world and their capitals. The use of audiovisual aids may not truly convey the taste, the smell, the noise, the ideas, and the behaviour of other cultures, but it would be a good start. It should be noted that many schools now support visits to other countries.

                2. On nature vs. nurture. I believe you may have glanced over one of my points, which is that men are born equal but are not created equal.

                2.1. There is a difference between capacity (Nature) and capability (Nurture). Capabilities can be taught… indeed to a very high degree but still only to a certain degree. Men can be so programmed in body and mind (enculturated in your terms) that they can perform to the level in which they have been trained. But as you admit for certain elite forces, there is “an extensive selection process to weed out unlikely candidates.”

                2.2. Many men can become SEALs, but only a few can become SEAL commanders. And behind the SEALs are a whole hierarchy of other personnel engaged in administrative support, intelligence, logistics, strategy, communications, training, medical, etc. So there exists a range of different capacities and different capabilities.

                2.3. Nature is not a luxury. It is a given. As such, it is something we have to work with.

                2.4. My point is that education should bring out the best in capability according to the individual’s capacity. (Sounds like communism: from each according to his ability…) I am not being elitist. As I have said, education should try to identify the specific capability of each individual and help to develop their true and full potential. In this sense, education is elitist… but at the individual level.

                2.5. So the HOW (of teaching excellence) is dependent on the WHO (the recipient of the teaching) and the WHAT (excellence in a vocation). We can disregard the WHEN and the WHY: excellence is the raison d’être, and it is needed now.

                3. But we are talking specifically of a general excellence as in my open-minded thinking approach, are we not?

                3.1. Before we proceed, notice how Josephivo has masterfully stepped into the discussion on drugs and gone back to the reasoning stage of the 5-tier model, specifically in reframing the question.

                3.2. And before we proceed further, let us ask the question: Is it practical or even desirable to have the open-ended enquiry mindset that I practice?

                4. I was somewhat taken aback by your statement that systems thinking is similar to the military mindset. As I reflect on it, it is true. It is true that the methodology bears resemblance to how the military considers scope, objectives, alternate strategies, contingency planning, detailed implementation steps, monitoring, control and feedback.

                4.1. But now as I consider it further, what took me aback was the notion that my open-minded mindset could be remotely compared to military training, and to be found similar.

                5. Let me attempt to break it down.

                6. Very broadly, education in the military sense consists of two stages: deprogramming and reprogramming (or deconditiong and reconditioning). Bootcamp is deprogramming by applying immense pressure – physical and psychological – on the trainee. This breaks down the trainee’s old cosmic egg and his defenses, and leaves him open to reprogramming in the skills that would make him a perfect soldier. But this reprogramming makes him an automaton. Not to question, but to obey. Not to think, but to act, and to react instinctively. Sensory and hunting skills are brought to the fore.

                6.1. In the new cosmic egg of the trainee, specialization, roles and structure are clearly defined.

                6.2. On top of this, there is an attempt to foster dependence and camaraderie in such notions as the life of the individual soldier is literally in the hands of his platoon mates (or his unit) and no man will be left behind.

                6.3. In all the branches of the armed forces, this mutual survival philosophy is leavened with ideals and mottos such as “Semper Fidelis” to develop esprit de corps.

                7. Non-military education, on the other hand, is all about conditioning (or programming) the individual for a productive life within the community. There is no need to decondition, as time is not a constraint. A fully educated individual will spend at least one-third of his life in education, from kindergarten to university.

                7.1. The current understanding is that education is about the impartment of knowledge. With the advances in technology, this understanding is being modified to that of imparting the tools for man to acquire and use knowledge. As much as possible, education should give a broad overview of the endeavors of mankind to make the compleat man. At the same time, education should narrow down to developing the life skills of the individual for livelihood.

                8. Let us return to my question in item 3.2: Is it practical or even desirable to have the open-ended enquiry mindset that I try to practice?

                8.1. Let me add another question: If it is desirable, can it be taught?

                8.2. In item 8.2 of my previous post, I stated that apart from methodology (or knowledge in general) and life skills, attitude (or character) is important.

                8.3. Here we come to the crux of this discussion. In my view, attitude is primary.

                8.4. One can have all the knowledge in the world and one can be the best in one’s field of expertise, but without the proper attitude life becomes a misery. You are a misery onto yourself and you make others miserable.

                9. The attitude I am talking about is not a constant ideal of a virtue but a range. Some people have it in minute quantities and others have a half-cup. Very few have a full cup.

                9.1. The open-ended enquiry approach that I practice is just one feature of this mindset. And as I have stated, certain assumptions underlie this mindset. I believe the open-ended enquiry approach can be transmitted as I described it under the 5-tier model.

                9.2. At its fullest, the mindset I am speaking of is captured in the words “transformation”, “conversion,” “spirit”, or “metanoia”.

                9.3. In the military sense, conversion is about esprit de corps. In the non-military sense, it is about the spirit that moves one where “de corps” is the whole of mankind or the Other. It is you seeing the man with no legs crossing the street and being aware of the imperative to help.

                9.3.1. But in the military sense, esprit de corps is limited to the brotherhood. It is akin to the exclusive feeling of kinship developed by hazing in college fraternities or by the shared experience of survivors in a calamitous event.

                9.4. Ultimately, it is debatable whether conversion is about the full development of conditioning or deconditioning. It may be both… but from my secular view, it is the latter. It is partial or full decondtioning beyond culture, religion, and even beyond education. It is about independence of thought. It is about self-reliance and not dependence on any authority whether politician, priest or pedagogue. It is the ability or the willingness to see things as they are or should be. Beyond thought, spirit is a state of grace.

                9.5. The vision is not perfect in all cases or issues. It never is. Sometimes between the seeing and the doing, thought steps in. “Between the idea / And the reality / Between the motion / And the act / Falls the Shadow / For Thine is the Kingdom.” (T.S. Eliot)

                10. Can spirit be taught? Not that I am aware of. Spirit requires an internal metamorphosis, and we do not know what triggers it. It is said when Buddha sat under the tree those sitting close to him popped into awakening. But 2,000 years of Christianity has shown that only a few have fully followed in Jesus’ footsteps. And in Zen, the koan or being hit with a stick may not bring the desired result of enligtenment.

                10.1. Spirit is a blessing that touches a man, or springs from within a man. It may be a random gift, or an answer given to those who have asked the passionate question.

              • 1. “A child is adaptable, but the culture shock I suffered at that pre-TV age was traumatic, and the tremors reverberated well into young adulthood.”

                I realize in our interaction that you are no average Filipino. As I’ve indicated before, I really think that the Philippines will be saved from itself only by children of Filipinos who have lived abroad or children of mixed ethnicities (Japanese-Filipino, German-, Canadian-, Australian- and American-Filipinos).

                You seem to belong to this group, but returned to the Philippines at such a young age that you are also in a different category altogether. I lived in Oahu, other side of Honolulu, for almost a year. The culture in Hawaii, especially Oahu, is very conducive to the attitude you touched on at the end–metanoia.

                edgar, do you think you can do a compare and contrast between your 0-8 yrs upbringing, for example school, family, neighborhood life, to that of your 8-16 yrs in rural Philippines?

                2. “But this reprogramming makes him an automaton. Not to question, but to obey. Not to think, but to act, and to react instinctively.”

                I’d beg to differ, re automaton and the US military. The Marines would probably come the closest to this automaton idea you speak of, but I assure you the quality they instill is the exact opposite of automaton.

                In bootcamp the most important trait they hammer is tact. Knowing when to dissent and how to do so diplomatically. Because the next important trait is for a Marine calling bs when he sees it. Of course there’s the chain of command but dissent is there and it is actually encouraged, albeit with tact.

                I bring this up, because it’s relevant here. Disagreeableness is part of American culture, it is also part of American military culture. But it isn’t part of Filipino military/police culture, no less of the wider Philippine culture, where being delicate trumps other traits.

                Disagreeableness I think plays a big component in what we are discussing here.

                3. “It is partial or full de-conditioning beyond culture, religion, and even beyond education. It is about independence of thought.”

                I have a better handle on your take of Nature vs. Nurture in education now, edgar. And I tend to agree with you that education must serve to actualize individual pursuits and passions. This should be the ideal.

                But my concern is what if the young generation is so inundated with useless things that they become too busy with Japanese pop culture, or when I was there it was moving towards Korean pop culture, that there is just no sense of self–what is there left to actualize then?

                So there has to be some sort of nudging involved by people who see in big picture, to encourage the young generation to take up some sort of duty to the wider whole. But if that wider whole–Filipino nation– is so ill defined, that many don’t see it at all, and thus only work for their family or town or political party, then the nation falters.

                The nation falters, and America loses its only viable ally in the region.

                So your mission now is to connect your answer to 1. compare/contrast and 2. disagreeableness/delicadeza and 3. metanoia/national duty

                I’m with good old Robert Heinlein, so when I say ‘duty’ I mean it like this:
                ‘Do not confuse “duty” with what other people expect of you; they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.’

                edgar, I’ll be incorporating some of what we’ve discussed here into the ACLU article in the education portion. I’d like to hear your answers to the above, but this subject (where you’ve lead us) is so relevant and interesting, I was wondering if you can also prepare an article on education to expand on what I’ll be touching on in the coming article per our discussion here. Thanks, man.

              • edgar lores says:

                1. Truth to tell, I don’t remember much of my early schooling. But I will point out three items that would stir nationalistic sentiment for country.

                1.1. Pledge of allegiance. Each morning there was school assembly for the flag-raising ceremony. At that time, Hawaii was not yet the 50th state, merely a U.S.-owned territory like Guam is now. Nevertheless each morning, we sang “The Star-spangled Banner” and recited “The Pledge of Allegiance.” The pledge is one sentence, less than 30 words, easy to memorize, and the last clause “with liberty and justice for all” especially the last two words, while not conceptually coherent to a child, has a stirring ring to it, a promise of the two highest values for all. For all. (Note at my time, the phrase “under God” had not yet been incorporated.)

                1.1.1. The Philippines did not develop a pledge of allegiance until the Ramos administration. I do not know whether it is recited each school day.

                1.2. Excursions. I remember more than a couple of excursions, once to see airplanes, another time to the zoo, and still another time to see the cracked Liberty Bell. (I do not know whether it was the real Liberty Bell or just a replica.)

                1.2.1. In Oz, 6th graders have an excursion to the national capital, Canberra, to visit the Parliament House and museums, notably the science museum, the Questacon. The Oz Parliament has a unique grand design and is a hallowed hall.

                1.2.2. In the US, I do not know whether excursions to the White House and the Capitol building are a must.

                1.2.3. In the Philippines, I do not know whether tours to Malacanang Palace, the House of Representatives and the Senate are encouraged. From photographs, I can see that the assembly hall of the lower house has a certain grandiosity of dimensions but the upper house seems to be a low-ceilinged cave. These three are not hallowed halls by association, more like dens of thieves.

                1.3. Grounding. The ratio of urban/rural population is 49% to 51%. To have a love for country, one must not only be grounded by culture and traditions but also by Nature. Half of the population is living in or near urban jungles. How many kids have not climbed a tree, taken frequent swims in the sea or a river, and hiked up a mountain?

                1.3.1. I have a hypothesis about grounding: patriotism is deeper in countries with four seasons rather than just two. The deeper changes in nature and the beauty of the changes evoke a deeper love for country. Also consider that Nature in the Philippines can be treasonous and very destructive.

                2. To foster the love of country, there must be an attachment to its reality and to its symbols. If the reality is just the peripherals of culture and tradition – food, costumes, fiestas, religious holidays, and traits – but not to the reality of the land, then the attachment is superficial. If the symbols do not bespeak loftiness of ideals and the grandeur of heroic accomplishments, then the attachment is not even formed.

                3. I said three items, but let me add a fourth: heroes. With the possible exception of Rizal, the heroes of the Philippines are heroically ambiguous. Bonifacio? Aguinaldo? These are tainted heroes. Rizal himself is not entirely a cynosure because he spurned the Church, and the Church continues to censor his masterpieces.

                4. Let me add a fifth: sports. The significance of sports as a national glue is seen in the Pacquiao phenomenon. Basketball is our primary national sport but there is no inter-city or regional competition. Sports are a thing of national pride in most countries, the U.S. with its Super Bowl and NBA, Australia with its cricket and rugby. We have yet to earn gold in the Olympics.

                5. By disagreeableness, I take it you mean dissent or better still non-conformity. Disagreeableness has the denotation of being unpleasant and even offensive.

                5.1. Filipinos are collectivistic and not individualistic. If more than 80% of the population belong to one religion, then the conformity level is very high. This trait has been analysed to death with the docility and conformity attributed to colonization, to the hierarchical structure of the society in general and the family in particular, and to authoritarian denominations.

                5.2. One will note that while there is conformity in belief there is strong strife and disagreement in opinion. This is largely due to mutual ignorance.

                5.2. I believe the latest generations have shed delicadeza as a national trait. In fact, the opposite, epalness or garapalan is the trend as embodied by the Binays.

                6. The traditional order of loyalty is God, Family and Country. Metanoia is above patriotism. For the religious, it is loyalty to God in spirit at each moment in daily life. For the non-religious, it is to be true to one’s inner self.

                6. I will take that last sentence to be my definition of duty. Duty is to be true to one’s inner self. And if one is true to one’s self and has been innerly transformed, then there should be no conflict between self and country, self and family, and self and God. It could only be the case that where there is conflict, country, family and God are in the wrong.

                7. Sorry, I do not have enough thoughts/materials on education except what I have already written.

              • Thanks, edgar, this was a very fruitful discussion. I agree with your points on patriotism. I remember in elementary after we recited the Pledge of Allegiance, we followed it up with “This Land is your Land”, and it’s hands down still my favourite song. It’s a patriotic song embracing Nature, and I’ve heard it sung with pride, in sadness and in celebration.

                One more question, how do I submit my ACLU article to JoeAm?

              • edgar lores says:

                You may submit your article via JoeAm’s email address, which can be found under the “Contact Us” tab at the top.

                Thank you.

            • “John 3:16 isn’t something Jesus said, it’s something John said (or later writers posing as John).”

              I happily, joyously agree with sir edgar lores on his post.

              God’s communication with us, His creation, if my understanding and memory serves me right is in 3 stages:

              A.) In the Old Testament, with Adam & Eve and all the bible characters in that period, He was in direct contact with them, not face to face, but He talked to them directly, they heard His voice.

              B.) He sent Jesus on earth, to save us from our selves, from our sins.

              John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17″For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.

              5. Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?”

              6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

              Jesus lived with those generation, talked to them, taught them, dined with them and left instructions to his disciples, John among them, to spread His Words, and spread them they did through the New testament.

              C. The bible was written by those who lived in those generation – those who heard God directly (Old Testament) those who lived with Jesus while He was on earth (the New Testament) They were led by the Holy Spirit which God has sent down to them when Jesus returned to Heaven.

              That is faith.

              Hebrews 11:1 answers and clarifies this misunderstanding. The verse: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

              • I might add on stage C:

                It is the stage after Jesus went back to heaven, the stage we are now in. The Holy Spirit is what is guiding us now.

              • Yes, interpretations matter. somebody I talked to stated it this way:

                Ok, there is the bible, I have my interpretation of the verses in it, you have yours, every Tom, Dick and Harry has their own, whose interpretation is the correct one?

                My reply is this, that is why before reading any of it, one should ask the Holy Spirit’s guidance, to help us interpret the way God want us to. Without the Holy Spirit (we can pray and ask for it to come to us) we will each depend on our own mental interpretation which can lead us astray.

                Another important gauge is this: We can be a walking bible, your acts, your speech and you thoughts will reflect how you interpret the bible. When you can recite each and every memory verse by heart but you act viciously to others, selfish, without love and caring, being a hypocrite, then your interpretation is wrong..

              • Er, this should read like this :

                No other books can compare with the current best sellers as the bible. It has endured the test of times. It does NOT need to be declared a doctrine by some modern or ancient church to be universally recognized.

              • ooops, 400 years after the death of Christ is totally different from 400 years ago… sorry

              • Bert says:

                “B.) He sent Jesus on earth, to save us from our selves, from our sins.”


                The way I see it in the context of what you wrote that I quoted here, and from my reading of the old and new Testaments, it seems to me that God the Father failed with Adam and Eve, the only two living people at the time. And so, many thousands of years after that, with so much number of people multiplying to millions “He sent Jesus on earth, to save us from ourselves, from our sins.”, isn’t it too much to expect the Son to succeed where the Father failed with just two people? And, indeed, it seems to me, that Jesus failed his mission as well like the Father. I might be wrong but I’m sure I will know for sure when I go to hell and see the population increasing or decreasing there. I just hope Joe’s blog is accessible over there so I can inform you guys of the actual situation.

                This is serious stuff and I’m not joking.

            • Bert,

              By their own choice , Adam & Eve was banished from heaven. They chose to listen to the devil instead of to God and partook the fruit from the tree of knowledge. Because of that original sin, they were separated from God. In exchange of being forever in Paradise, they learned right and wrong and the freedom to choose between the two…. in that sense, God failed on the two, and they had to work and toil for their living and Eve had to suffer at childbirth. Millions of people later, and even after a deluge that wiped humanity except for Noah and his family, mankind with the original sin continue to be separated from God..

              that’s when Jesus came.

              John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17″For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.

              Jesus became the bridge so God and man can be reconciled and be free from that original sin. But as the saying goes – we can only lead a horse to a water hole, one cannot force it to drink – man has to accept Christ as Lord and Savior. Still our choice to cross the bridge where God is waiting.

              We have to look unto Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, If we look at people who are not perfect most of the time, we will be lost.

              • Bert says:


                It’s so amazing to me, this something called Faith, making so many people persist on trusting two Gods, the Father and the Son, okay, okay, one God and two failures, in spite of insurmountable evidence that it’s not going to get any better soon…soon meaning maybe for another million years. Could it be that people are extremely positive thinkers by nature?

              • The mystery of the Holy Trinity is much too deep to comprehend by the human mind. It is an accepted truth in the bible that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit is but one God. That is faith.

                It is by the choice of mankind that he was separated from God, actually upon deeper analysis, it’s mankind’s mistake not God’s, but God is so loving and merciful that He gave us another chance by sacrificing the Son. By rising again from the dead The Son became victorious.

                It’s now depending on mankind to accept that chance.

              • Bert says:

                Yes, Mary. If it’s too deep to comprehend the most prudent and easiest way to make a decision is to have faith then believe it as being true I suppose, then hope that it’s indeed true. Something to gain and nothing to lose. I envy people who can have that kind of faith but I feel that it’s too bitter a pill to swallow for me.

                As to God’s dependence on mankind to accept another chance at salvation, I hope God succeed this third time around although I doubt it would matter to the faithful if God fail again the third time.

  66. Mary,

    I’ll answer your question about fracking here, since this subject merits its own thread.

    “Hydraulic fracturing, informally referred to as “fracking,” is an oil and gas well development process that typically involves injecting water, sand, and chemicals under high pressure into a bedrock formation via the well. This process is intended to create new fractures in the rock as well as increase the size, extent, and connectivity of existing fractures. Hydraulic fracturing is a well-stimulation technique used commonly in low-permeability rocks like tight sandstone, shale, and some coal beds to increase oil and/or gas flow to a well from petroleum-bearing rock formations. A similar technique is used to create improved permeability in underground geothermal reservoirs.” –from USGS

    Following Obama’s strategy of independence from oil and gas, there’s been an exponential increase in fracking. So successful that now the US is exporting oil and gas, most to China.

    About 1 mile from where I live is a series of fracking sites. There’s been an increase in tremors (little earthquakes) associated with the sites. And although my water source comes from above ground aqueducts, the farms further down river from me use ground water, and they’ve been affected.

    Watch this documentary “Gasland”:

    My personal bias is that oil is a dirty source for energy. So whether we take it from the MidEast or take it from our own backyard, it’s a bad idea. Control excess use and find other cleaner means for energy should be the priority.

    Although there’s an effort to find cleaner energy, there’s no effort to control excess us. With continued excess use, Obama’s strategy doesn’t work.

    Specifically on fracking, supposedly there’s a safe way of doing this (I seriously doubt it), but without regulating entities by the government to ensure ground water isn’t affected and anticipate other unintended consequences,

    companies will opt for the quickest and cheapest way to frack, with no regard to people and their environment.

    So that’s fracking in a nutshell.

    Is fracking an issue in the Philippines?

    the State Dept. under then Sec. Clinton, following Pres. Obama’s strategy of security through oil/gas independence, promoted fracking around the world. Oil/gas companies in tow, USAID and IMF money given out, Clinton encouraged fracking worldwide. Read the article below:

    • Thanks very much, now I know more about fracking. I heard that it is also a capital intensive venture so much so that the recent fall of oil prices have affected the producers who resort to this and that oil price had to be increased again so these producers won’t go bankrupt.

      Chemicals when they reach the ground reservoir where potable water is sourced is truly a major concern that should not be ignored. Americans should rally in protest.

      I never heard of any fracking activity hereabouts, I maybe wrong, but then uncontrolled mining here which use mercury pose a dangerous health hazard in our river tributaries, damaging nearby crops and the sea life where they end up. Mercury skin poisoning is a horrendous way to slowly die.

    • Talking about sustainable and cleaner energy source, we do have windmills which in Ilocos, Pillilia and Tanay Rizal which are:

      “increasingly popular as alternative sources of energy, wind turbine generators are a type of windmill that produces electricity by harnessing the wind. Wind turbine generators are much less harmful to the environment than burning fossil fuels, but they do require average wind speeds of at least 21 km/h (13 mph). The largest of these windmills stands 150 feet tall with blades half the legend of a football field. The compartments at the top containing the generator, hub and gearbox weigh 30,000 to 45,000 pounds.

      A wind turbine’s cost can range upwards to $300,000 and can produce 300 kilowatts – the amount of electricity used by a typical household in a month. Almost all of the currently installed wind electric generation capacity is in California. The high-tech megatowers are engineered in cooperation with NASA and nursed by federal and state subsidies. This wind farm on the San Gorgonio Mountain Pass in the San Bernadino Mountains contains more than 4000 separate windmills and provides enough electricity to power Palm Springs and the entire Coachella Valley. ”

      Capital intensive too, and what if there’s not enough wind with the required speed?

      • Mary,

        I’ve driven by those wind farms, many times none are spinning, even with high winds. These solar, wind projects seem to be just a means for oil/gas companies to write off tax deductions, also to receive tax dollar/government funding for R&D. So it’s largely a scam, at least here in the US.

        Scandinavian countries have done wonders with solar and wind energy. But it all goes back to the whole notion of excess. Unless there’s a concerted effort to use less of the dirtier energy, then clean energy will never take off. If these clean alternatives are just treated as tax breaks and source for government funding then progress will be very slow.

        • So let’s discuss excess use, do you mean too many private cars and less mass transit? Too many Christmas lights in December, too many private planes and helicopters by the ulra rich and billionaires?

          I don’t even want to think about nuclear plants as another source what with the Fukoshima and Chernobyl disasters and the increasing frequency and intensity of earthquakes occurring here and around the world. Rumors have it that until now, the Fukoshima reactors are still spilling tremendous amounts of radioactive wastes in the Pacific.

          Solar energy, yes, is another sustainable and clean source of energy but again, too capital intensive, although they are offering power rebates for homes of the ultra rich who invest in this.

          • Excess use, abuse of nature, treating humanity as commodity, consumerism, attempting to fill psychological voids with food or stuff or bleacher-thinking (booooo!!! for them, yaaaay!!! for us), these are all symptoms of the lack of wisdom.

            Wisdom can come from reason or it can come from faith–because reason can only go so far. But it requires a lot of meditation, prayers and/or thinking, many Catholic priests I met, drank beer/rum and ate pork with us.

            Wisdom seem a very rare commodity there.

            In the Philippines, I noticed most Filipinos love their malls, love their Jollibees and are consuming more and more things, to include oil. They seem to think that all that is progress.

            For us here, the turning point was the 70s where we saw our rivers, oceans, forest become dirty. Pollution was everywhere. There was an adjustment in thought that followed,

            ‘think globally, act locally’, ‘live simply so others may simply live’, ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’, these many simplistic sound bites (actually bumper sticker wisdom), these thoughts did become a basis for the environmental movement. More people were now aware.

            So since the 70s, the people who want balance and the corporations who prefer excess as a means to profit, have been fighting. There’s a push/pull process.

            The Philippines sadly doesn’t have this environmental consciousness yet. Most rivers I saw while there were sewage, miners pollute and government officials get paid off. From a micro-perspective,

            Filipinos tend to be dirtier compared to Koreans, Japanese, as MRP pointed out Filipinos pee everywhere, toss trash anywhere, spit all over the place. So the culture itself accepts dirtiness, whether it encourages it that’s debatable.

            I remember while I was at the airport there a Filipino family was sitting enjoying there snacks, they just threw their trash on the floor. And a Japanese group was sitting near them, one of them got off their seat to pick-up the Filipino family’s trash littered on the floor, calmly throwing their trash in the bin for them.

            • I think it all goes back to Character development, Mary. Watch this video:

              In researching for this ACLU article, everything seems to point back to cultivating character. The press, governance, acting with groups, education, protecting the environment, etc. all goes back to character.

              For example, how does one boxer define a whole nation? Mayweather’s a great boxer, but he doesn’t define the US, not even Blacks in the US.

              Pacquiao assumed that role of defining a whole nation because there’s a clear lack of heroes in the Philippines, people who have depth of character are rare, people who stand on principle are rare.

              If a whole nation uses one person as a crutch, then when that one person falters, the whole nation goes with it. Hence the danger of the Filipinos’ proclivity towards hero-worship (and telenovelas, which is related).

              Hopefully, Pacquiao retires and immigrates to the US, if only to save the Philippines from itself. Because if left unchecked he might become the next Philippine president, with all the self-serving sycophants in tow.

              So when speaking of fighting pollution or fighting corruption or fighting mediocrity in thought, we have to go back to the issue of character.

              Why is there such a lack of this? What can be done about it? Education and religion and the home have been historical sources of character building, but since this type of training is example driven, ie. the ones teaching it have to practice what they preach, and

              we agree that there is a lack of these examples of character there, how else can you teach it then?

              • Education and character building begin and continue at home, schools offer knowledge, expertise, character building should also be fined tuned there.

                Unfortunately, that is not happening now. With the advent of social media games, new gadgets and pursuit of personal gratification, family bonding during shared meals are now a thing of the past. Pep talks are only half listened, one ear and both eyes are glued to tablets, simply not communicating.

                With one or both parents who are OFWs, character building is next to impossible. These parents appease their guilty conscience in not being physically there for their children buy buying these gadgets (some justifying these purchases by saying it’s better than be in to drugs), and worldly goods that only turn their kids to be irresponsible with their pocket money and with their studies.

                Ideally, church and schools should help out, but it’s not happening. Church are busy meddling in politics and schools are not doing their job enough to convert these kids to be what they should be – civic minded and responsible. Relatives left at home to be guardians are not given full authority to guide the youth, the final say will come from mom and dad who are not home but are guilty enough to pamper their children to counter that guilt feelings. Guardians just helplessly watch, can’t do anything or they will labelled killjoy or contrabida.

            • edgar lores says:

              “Filipinos tend to be dirtier…”

              The truth hurts. After the papal mass at Luneta, the park was awash with litter.

    • karl garcia says:

      If there is gasification of waste technologies, why resort to fracking.If if it is methane we want,the landfills are the answer.

      On crude,plastic to diesel technology.

      Mining could be reduced if we can extract metals from ewaste.

      On pollution in water, I read about bioremediation or mutant bactrtia unleashed in oil spills or just feed the bacteria methane so they would reproduce.The bacteria could also eat plastic.the bacteria could also be used to collect mercury for industrial use.

    • LCpl_X and the others

      Hey, look what I found today…what is your take on this, guys?

      Batteries: The Power Of The Future?

      By Tim Maverick of Wall Street Daily
      Monday, May 4, 2015 4:19 AM EDT

      Elon Musk is at it again.

      Most casual observers thought the giant lithium-ion battery Gigafactory being built by Tesla Motors (TSLA) was all about the electric car market.

      That’s… mostly true. But it’s also about so much more.

      Musk also plans to use the Gigafactory to produce batteries that can power private homes, and even larger structures.

      The company’s Chief Technology Officer, JB Straubel, believes the market for stationary batteries “can scale faster than automotive,” and could account for up to 30% of the Gigafactory’s battery output.

      Rumors about the company making the major shift into stationary batteries have been around for a while. But, they weren’t confirmed until the evening of April 30 by Musk at a Tesla event.

      Storage and the New Grid

      What’s so big about this news is that these batteries may very well become a key component in the grid of the future.

      More and more homes, businesses, and utilities are using renewable energy. But the major problem with energy sources, like solar and wind power, is that power generation can be intermittent.

      These batteries can be used to combat the surging nature of renewable energy by storing electricity during peak productions times and then releasing it when it’s needed.

      The battery system, unveiled by Tesla yesterday, is similar to what has already been available to about 300 customers of Solar City (SCTY), a company that Musk chairs. These units can be leased for an initial outlay of $1,500, with a payment of $15 per month.

      Musk unveiled two batteries for the home: the 10-kilowatt capacity Powerwall and the 7-kilowatt capacity Powerpack. The cost is $3,500 and $3,000, respectively.

      The Powerwall is intended to provide back-up power for the home while the Powerpack can be used to run everyday refrigerators and TVs.

      In the corporate world, Tesla battery back-up systems have already been installed by both Apple (AAPL) and Google (GOOGL) at their corporate campuses. The company has also launched a pilot program with Wal-Mart (WMT). No price was stated by Musk for the business products.

      Currently, it’s believed that these corporate customers are shaving 20% to 30% off their monthly electric bills.

      Readers may be wondering why Musk is unveiling these systems now, when Tesla has already tested them so extensively.

      Well, Musk is no fool… He sees a very big market about to open up.

      Elon Musk’s Vision

      California’s Public Utilities Commission initiated an energy storage mandate in October 2014 that requires the state’s utilities to have at least 1.3 gigawatts of electricity storage capacity by 2020.

      Other states are sure to follow California’s lead.

      Already, some electric grid operators in Texas and New York have begun using batteries for energy storage to smooth out the flow of electricity over transmission lines.

      The move toward energy storage is gaining momentum around the world, too. Navigant

      Research forecasts that global revenue from grid-scale energy storage may exceed $68 billion by 2024.

      And don’t forget about the home-use market.

      Simon Moores of Benchmark Mineral Intelligence estimates that Tesla could produce enough lithium-ion batteries by 2020 to power 3.5 million homes.

      Being the premier player in batteries has apparently been Elon Musk’s plan all along.

      In Elon Musk’s future, everyone will have home and car batteries that they plug in to charge and that are connected to the grid digitally, making blackouts a thing of the past.

      Analyst Ravi Manghani of GTM Research said of Musk and Tesla, “They’re not just car makers. They’re part of the electricity network. At least, folks in the energy industry are very well aware of Tesla as a battery maker.”

      And as Simon Moores said, Musk is making Tesla the first fully integrated and diversified battery company.

      Time will tell if that is a wise move, and if Elon Musk is mentioned in the same breath as Steve Jobs.

      And the chase continues,

      Tim Maverick

        • In Elon Musk’s future, everyone will have home and car batteries that they plug in to charge and that are connected to the grid digitally, making blackouts a thing of the past.

          This will prove very handy (although bulky) during black outs lasting weeks after a particularly strong typhoon that topples power lines.

          • These units can be leased for an initial outlay of $1,500, with a payment of $15 per month.

            Musk unveiled two batteries for the home: the 10-kilowatt capacity Powerwall and the 7-kilowatt capacity Powerpack. The cost is $3,500 and $3,000, respectively.

            The Powerwall is intended to provide back-up power for the home while the Powerpack can be used to run everyday refrigerators and TVs.

  67. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Usman was allegedly killed by MILF. They took pictures and sent it to loosy Philippine Media. They published it without the body. No evidence. Only witnesses and pictures like Marwan.

    Obama is still not talking. No presscon at Rose Garden. White House silent. No body. No rewards.

  68. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    In all Manny Pacquiao fight in the U.S. NOT ONE HOME-GROWN PHILIPPINE-EDUCATED singer of Philippine National Anthem sang. They prefer AMERICANS to sing the Philippine National Anthem.

    Pacquiao-Marquez was sang by New Jersey American
    Pacquiao-Mayweather was sang by Bronx American

    IS THERE SOMETHING WRONG WITH FILIPINOS FROM THE PHILIPPINES? They even import half-bred half-white colonizer look to represent the indigenous Filipino browned skin in international beauty contests. WHY? Who is promoting and inspiring Filipinos that brown-skin Filipinos are ugly? I know there are plenty of brown skin punk’d nose Filipinos out there. Why do they prefer non-traditional looking imported beauty queens?

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      I have visited Los Angeles. In Cerritos Mall in Cerritos, California I saw a browned-skin American of Filipino decent poster hanging from the canopy of this mall.

      In Westfield West Covina Mall in West Covina, Caifornia I saw from the 10 freeway a huge brown-skin American of Philippine origin gracing the entrance to the mall.

      BofA billboards another brown skin American of Philippine decent …

      deVry University, American of Philippine origin ….

      Los Angeles Metro Transit Authority in every busses of theirs, an American of Philippine origin …

      IT APPEARS FILIPINOS CANNOT KNOW THE ORIGINAL TRADITIONAL LOOKS OF INHABITANTS OF THE PHILIPPINES. In fact, these malls, banks and universities are making blasphemy out of the looks of the Filipinos by choosing non-white Filipinos.

      The Filipinos are promoting to the world that the Filipinos are white! JOE, IN YOUR ABSENCE, I WILL TAKE THE LIBERTY TO LAUGH! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA!

      Filipinos to have dignity, love thyselves like you love you never loved before. BROWN-SKIN FIRST ! DON’T HATE ‘EM. LOVE ‘EM. Because this is what we are !!!

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Filipinos, please do not be what we are not.
      We are brown skin not white not yellow.
      Please do not measure beauty by the color of the skin
      We have our own dialect not English
      Please do not measure intelligence by fluency in written or spoken english
      We have our own God.
      We were born when lightning struck a bamboo even before Adam and Eve were made
      Colonizing Spaniards outlawed our religion and FORCEFULLY REPLACED IT WITH JESUS CHRIST.
      Colonizing Spaniards flogged every inhabitants of Philippines to make them believe in their God.
      After brutally subduing and erasing our indigenous God, Filipnos submitted and believed Spanish Gods.
      Because according to Filipinos back in the days, “WHAT DO WE GOT TO LOSE TO BELIEVE IN SPANISH GOD?”
      Filipinos believed in Spanish God to survive. To this day, they still believe in it. NOT TO SURVIVE but to FIT IN.

    • Don’t you remember Geneva Cruz and Martin Rivera singing Lupang Hinirang for Manny?

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        Yes, I remember them. No Filipino ever wanted to sing Lupang HINIRAM again for Manny Pacquiao because Martin Rivera was slammed for singing LUPANG HINIRAM IN HIS OWN RENDENTION.

        • karl garcia says:

          Lupang hiniram,di ko napansin akala ko tama. Kanino natin hiniram ang lupa? nagbabayad ba tayo ng lease?

        • karl garcia says:

          dapat daw kung pano natin kinanta sa flag ceremony ganun daw.Bakit robot ba tayo,yung mga onaks tulad ni Usher me feelings at emotion din naman pag kinanta nila ang anthem nila

  69. hackguhaseo says:

    On a more serious note, does anyone have any idea how we can realistically affect changes in this country’s political and electoral systems? Because I have to be honest with you guys, getting involved in a large-scale movement where I have to invest a lot of my time sounds scary to me. I can do phone calls, handle social media campaigns and stuff like that, but any bigger and I’d have to tap out.


    We’d need something like I think, but that’s just me.

    I’m asking because I’m seriously thinking about leaving the Philippines and moving to somewhere like Finland if things remain as they are.

    • jameboy says:

      “… we can realistically affect changes in this country’s political and electoral systems?”
      For a starter, identify the specific political and electoral issues that will be subject of change. 👍

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        Change has to be effected at the root of the problem: PHILIPPINE MEDIA

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        Political and electoral issues are controlled by the Philippine Media bias and prejudices. Change the Philippine Media and you change the electoral and political landscape of the Philippines.

        Philippines need to open the Media to Rupert Murdoch which he was denied. The Senators who rejected Rupert Murdoch’s courtship wanted Philippines to be forever under mental bondage by puppet Media.

        That is why whenever there is a coup-de-t’at in countries, FIRST THING FIRST IS TO CONTROL THE MEDIA. THEN THE PEOPLE.

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        Marcos did that. He was able to rule the Philippines for over 20 years. He who controls the media controls the people minds.

        Christians did that, too, in the medieval times. To this day, Vatican does not allow scholars to see some of the unreleased scrolls in the dungeon of the Vatican. They are afraid that Jesus Christ was a hero and Satan was the fall guy.

        Check your Standard Language of Insurance Policy. There is a phrase “Acts-of-God” which the Vatican been at wars with Lloyds of London to delete it from the Insurance Language because they say, God is a merciful God. Therefore, Earthquakes, Typhoons and fortuitous event should not be considered Acts-of-God but Acts-of-Satan.

        • such musings from a confused mind. What Marcos did to the media is the extreme. I totally disagree with your solution, repulsed as I am with slanted news.

          • hackguhaseo says:

            Have you considered the potential solution I proposed above? I like it because some of it is making phone calls and donating to the cause… I’m also thinking of having Joe be the head of the movement or someone else who is more committed…

        • hackguhaseo says:

          Going a little extreme there, aren’t you? Have you considered the potential solution I proposed above? I like it because some of it is making phone calls and donating to the cause… I’m also thinking of having Joe be the head of the movement or someone else who is more committed…

      • hackguhaseo says:

        Have you considered the potential solution I proposed above? I like it because some of it is making phone calls and donating to the cause… I’m also thinking of having Joe be the head of the movement or someone else who is more committed…

        • We have a group before, right before the People Power Revolution… it’s called NAMFREL..National Movement for Free Election, it’s still active today, I think. It has done wonders in that election which propelled Cory Aquino to the presidency when members exposed the cheating and irregularities done by the Marcos regime that time (as confirmed by Enrile when he was fearing for his life at Camp Aguinaldo.

        • karl garcia says:

          Generic answer: Nasubukan na yan pumalpak sila.,walang nangyari at mangyayari dyan.(wala namang ginawa para tumulong)

  70. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Here is my final analysis to what was considered as BORING BOXING OF THE CENTURY: Overhyped, Overpriced, and Oversold

    1. Both of them were OVERLY-CAUTIOUS. Neither throwing punches. Afraid they might make error of judgments
    2. Floyd win by number of hits
    3. OVERLY-CAUTIOUS Manny did not attack like he used to. Afraid of Floyd’s longer reach.
    4. Floyd used run-and-duck technique knowing if he goes in street-rumble like attack he’d be clubbered to a pulp
    5. So, they just danced the Cha-Cha and Con-con looking at the clock

    In the end the viewers were scammed of Php700.00 pesos watching Floyd-Manny fight at SM including T-shirt

    Today, nobody is wearing Manny Pacquiao T-shirt. Manny Pacquiao is abandoned by his fans. No ticker parade. No victory parade. No photo-ops at Malacanang.

    Trillanes has already come out of the woodowrk. He is now charging Binay Jr with another anomaly, OF COURSE, without evidences AS USUAL. To divert Court of Appeals from their asking Trillanes of EVIDENCE that they received Binay Money in exchange for TRO.

    Sereno is back in the limelight for prejudging Binay TRO and making selective and time-framed with expiry date constitutional change of Aguinaldo Doctrine because she consider it “OUTDATED”. ONLY FOR BINAY not for Aquino’s allies.

    SO, FOLKS! BACK TO REALITY !!! They will be licking their losses and wounds. They will take revenge. THIS TIME BINAY cannot dance and run. He will be knocked down so the Filpino people can forget about Manny Pacquiao’s loss.

    Philippine Daily Inquirer will now come up with TOTALLY INCREDIBLE HEADLINES soon to make up the loss of circulation after Manny’s debacle.

  71. Yvonne says:

    Is TV Patrol a newscast, a news commentary program, or what?
    Why is Noli De Castro still with TV Patrol?
    He has this propensity to ask questions on something that its field reporters just said on the newscast that already answered his questions. Is De Castro even listening to TV Patrol reporters?

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Good question. That is why I never listen or read Philippine Newspapers to be informed. I LISTEN AND READ PHILIPPINE NEWSPAPERS for entertainment purposes.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      Funny about newsreporting in the Philippines is they do not make references to the evidences at hand. Instead they make references to the people who are investigated by the looney Senators. They do that because Filipinos love drama.

      The Philippine newspapers are one big spread of walang wakasan, walang katapusan comic news strips.

    • My questions exactly. There was even a time when Noli did not allow a reporter to continue reporting, he took over that portion as if he is in a paid block time in a radio program rudely spewing forth his indignation and opinions… is that news reporting? Netizens were in an uproar over that but ABS CBN simply ignored them.

      • And before jameboy advise me again not to watch TV Patrol if it repulses me, I am outnumbered at home, I arrive at the office at a time when they are watching it and of course I have to take my dinner while it is on, I am not that rude to change channels when others are fascinatingly glued to them. I’m neither rude nor a dictator at home. They will say in a chorus, “walang basagan ng trip”.

      • sonny says:

        Mary, I remember you wanted to read the real Noli. Am I right? Anyway, f you ever come Chicago way, you must visit The Newberry Library. The Filipiniana collection (the Ayer’s Collection) includes one of the 6 copies of the original Noli of Dr Rizal. 🙂 Also, I don’t know how much the Field Museum of Natural shows from its Filipiniana collection. It is one of largest in the world.