The Binays and the shame of the Philippines

binay-and-the-bsp rappler

[Photo credit: Rappler]

When surfers sit on their boards peering seaward, they are looking for a wave that works, that crests big and in the right place and at the right time.

A wave is now rising in the Philippines and we must watch to see if it is the one so many of us have been looking for. The one where the people’s desire for honesty and decency and a better life rises tall and magnificent to break across the Philippines and wash it clean.

The wave is represented by Filipinos who say, simply and passionately:

“No to Binay”

The Binay family is not a shame unto itself. We cannot expect the family to walk with genuine humility. It is a family that, from all available evidence, knows no shame. Its members believe any criticism is offensive. They are entitled to the grace and dignity granted kings and queens. Critics are the scoundrels in their lexicon. Entitlement is the norm in their behavior set, not fair dealing or kindness. Ask a couple of security guards about that.

It is the logic of a thief, thinking that calls a whistle-blower a dirty rat and law-enforcement officials politically biased. Wrong is right. Right is wrong. Respect is turned inside out. It is a logic that justifies the use of bribery and intimidation to secure loyalty and support. Lies and propaganda fall within their definition of FOI. Ask the notorious Philippine tabloid press about that.

This is a family whose stooges are on the run, whose members refuse to answer simple questions, like, why did you pay a contractor P2.3 billion to build a garage worth less than P900 million? A family that has full run of a hacienda with orchids and race horses and cock fights and a world-famous piggery, yet deny that they have anything to do with it. The neighbors say otherwise. The leader of the family is the nation’s top Boy Scout. He is a devoted Catholic and is often captured in prayer with his eyes lifted toward heaven seeking the Lord’s backing.

Scout founder Robert Baden-Powell is twirling in his grave.

Saint Peter scowls, as he does when visited by applicants who have spent a lifetime mocking God.

But shame does not fall on the Binays. The Binays are just doing what crooks and liars do.

Which means that if they are not crooks and liars, they are behaving very strangely indeed.

No, the shame is not the Binay’s.

The shame is ours. It is yours and mine. It belongs to all Filipinos who are not corrupt of conscience and yet, collectively, allow the family to persist in powerful positions. Who, collectively, cannot figure out a way to eject the Binay name and values from leadership and defend the Philippine national reputation.

  • The shame falls to politicians who stand silent, disregarding hopeful citizens and international observers who watch in awe as the Philippines – a nation run by adults – refuses to adhere to the kind of ethical courage that high school kids understand . . .

. . . before their nation’s leaders betray THEM . . .

. . . and they, too, begin to look for short cuts and easy paths . . .

. . . rather than earnest, honest, earned paths.

  • The shame falls to hundreds of sister city mayors who have each sold their community to a Makati family bearing gifts. The shame belongs to the local electorate, voters who are not courageous, involved or enlightened enough to demand autonomy for their own province, city or municipality. Or the right to think for themselves.
  • The shame falls on the nation’s institutions, particularly the courts whose judges withhold punishment rather than levy it, or undermine the Ombudsman and Department of Justice, or dispense purchased justice. The shame falls on an impotent COMELEC that refuses to see the Vice President as offensive to democratic ideals or its charter to assure free and fair elections . . .

 . . . as if commissioners do not know that vote-buying will be rampant in 2016 . . .

. . . and find it perfectly acceptable to allow an apparent crook and liar to run for President . . .

. . . and let a preening family erode the very meaning of national honor.

  • Indeed, the shame falls on any person of common sense and good intent, for allowing such bad behavior to operate one breath away from the President.

There are five classes of Filipinos operating in the hall of shame:

  1. Those who from all available evidence are crooks and liars: Jejomar Binay, Junjun Binay, the Limlingans, Chongs, Tius and scores of dummys, Hilmarcs’ executives, Alphaland executives, and the local government chiefs who have accepted personal gifts from the Binays to deliver their city’s votes.
  2. The corrupt of conscience who may not be crooks, but who advocate for the Binays. Who spin the facts and warp the values fed to the entire nation. The unethical media, journalism professionals who have sold their souls and personal pride to the devil; the Binay spokesliars who condemn good people and good values in favor of bad, the prominent people such as the Aquino sisters and Peping Cojuangco and Atty Harry Roque, who put their own weight of reputation behind the Binays.
  3. The silent and compliant. The legislators and prominent people who stand back as others do the hard and honorable work. The oligarchs who win no matter what. The leaders who follow and bow to the Binay power machine. Even President Aquino, who plays politics as usual, for reasons we can’t quite comprehend, and willingly shares the room with a scoundrel.
  4. The moral shape-shifters. Those whose personal ambitions cause them to make a calculated move to counter the Binays. Ernie Mercado. Grace Poe.
  5. The honorable and honest and good Filipinos. They may not be perfect, but they know right from wrong. This is the wave. The people of common sense and decent values. Some have a podium and the will to step up to it: opinion-makers such as Solita Collas-Monsod and Jim Paredes; legislators such as Sonny Trillanes, Alan Cayetano and Koko Pimentel. Also the millions of people of no podium, of little power and influence, but of good heart and mind and principle. Many go by what others tell them, and they are what makes the wave’s shape hard to see.

And so we watch.

We watch the wave.

We hope to catch a big one.

Right here. Right now.

We hope to become one with the wave and ride it to its righteous destiny, a fair, honorable, modern and wealthy Philippines.


184 Responses to “The Binays and the shame of the Philippines”
  1. Maxie says:

    Welcome home, JoeAm. So glad you’re back. Hope you and your family enjoyed your respite from the slugfest here in PH 🙂 #BINAYRESIGN

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks Maxie. It is wonderful to be back home. It was nice to take a break.

    • EFREN ANDRES says:

      Hi Mr. Joe, I don’t know if you were at the Makati City Hall in 1986 when Jojo Binay took over the office of the mayor. It was so tense that as if you are witnessing Al Capone with his armed robbers, arms on waist, ears of a Doberman, so proudly introducing himself as the new OIC yet, known to everyone as never won a kagawad seat in his Barangay Olympia. After 29 years of looting that follows, Jojo Binay may now be facing the Lord Karma who is saying to him enough is enough. BTW those petite smiles that we now see in Jojo Binay are total opposite to his smiles but, laughs, then. I feel insulted every time I see him make faces simply for the show.

      • Joe America says:

        His smiles to me seem more like grimaces of pain. I rather think he is lost with his dream collapsing. There is no Plan B.

        • Binay’s smiles are Cobras smiles – you could sense there is something EVIL behind his smiles – a Real SNAKE! His children were FED with Stolen food and STEALING for them is a skill! Pweh!

          • Trouse says:

            Oh don’t compare him with snake, snakes wont steal and only bite when feel threaten, feel so bad for the snake to be compared to Binays…Animals are not greed Binays are!

  2. Juana Pilipinas says:

    Welcome back, Joe and family!

    I am hanging ten and riding the wave with you and the Society members.

    Binay just blasted both Mar and Grace with his “competent and experienced” propaganda. I am toying about writing an article about Mar’s achievements but as I am reading some of your back articles, I found one where you did an exhaustive compilation and may translate it in Pilipino with your permission.

    I know I had been disagreeable while you are away. I apologize to you and the Society members for the raucous with jameboy. I regret subjecting you to my tirades but I do not regret putting a mirror infront of jameboy.

    If I have to join Irineo, I’d gladly do it.

  3. Bing Garcia says:

    The honorable and honest and good Filipinos. You are one of them Joe.

    • Joe America says:

      Thank you, Bing. I recognized upon landing in Manila and finding a wonderful Filipino restaurant at Resort World, seeing the lively chatter and smiles from expressive people, that this is my home. My brain and heart – and stomach – all say so.

  4. NHerrera says:


    I join the others in welcoming you back. The vacation apparently did wonders. The current piece is one strong evidence. It has the thoughts, the vigor, the passion, the phraseology — vintage JoeAm and more.

  5. Gee Ibanez says:

    Welcome home Joe! Been looking forward to reading substantive articles like this while u were away. Rest assured, there are lots of surfers waiting for the big tide to wash up the Binays to China’s shores. “BinayResign or I think #BinaysResign is more appropriate.

    • Joe America says:

      Thank you, Gee. May the voice of the surfers rise loud and clear. His value construct would indeed fit well with China’s. Interesting, that observation.

  6. Kiko says:

    Those two weeks seemed like ages Joe. I missed your straight shooting posts. WB!

  7. hackguhaseo says:

    Jo back ya’ll! Joe back! Holla my man!

    • Joe America says:

      Say hey, bro! All good here and I hope there. I appreciate you covering my back in response to Louie’s elaborate critique. You said much of what I would have said. Thanks!

  8. I join the chorus of those welcoming you back. I missed your rejoinder for every comment made. Missed too the editor for my endless typos, haha!

    This latest article almost reduced me to tears. You really have a way with words. Your response to Bing Garcia (above, although mixed with wit at the end) brought a lump in my throat.

    This article should also be translated into the language spoken by the masa. (Juana, you are a good translator) This is too good a message to be read by just those of us who are regulars here. It feels like we are talking among ourselves. And June, your self imposed deadline is fast approaching… oh my!

    I did not vote for Binay although I admire him for so long during the pre Edsa days (based on the mosquito press I was re reading). He has some redeeming qualities and principles back then. I voted for Mar in 2010. One less decision to regret over.

    It’s truly is a good feeling knowing someone really cares about this country.

  9. josephivo says:

    The waiting for the wave is the easy part, riding the wave to the end will be close to impossible. We will be too late, too clumsy, too eager, we will have to fall a hundred times, but we will keep believing, keep risking and eventually ride in an awe.

    We saw the Marcos’ wave, but people fell off immediately. We saw the warlord wave, Ampatuan only got shaken a little, not down yet. We saw the Judiciary wave, but only Corona fell. We saw the Napoles wave, 3 senators got hit, but many, many more still swim the murky corrupt waters.

    The Binay wave, how to ensure we catch it at full strength and run it up to the end? The billions back, the complete corrupt structure dismantled, impunity turned around into speedy and harsh punishment.

    Welcome back Joe, your tickling the blogosphere to generate hope, to generate ideas is appreciated.

  10. Sumida says:

    sorry off topic.. photo for this new blog reminds me of this image…

    wonder if this is the reason why the VP can’t let go of his boy scout post…

    • Joe America says:

      On topic, bulls eye. The corrupt preying on the innocent, stepping on them, using them.

      • IBRSalazar says:

        Like I have often said, Binay IS Hitlerian. I only experienced – met is too much to say, the only politician I talked to in the group that came to Germany 20+ years ago was the father of a high-school classmate (and one of my brother’s elementary school classmates) AND compadre of my father, a Muslim politician – Jojo Binay ONCE. An enormous presence and smoothness, and a way of looking at the room very similar to Hitler in intensity – scary.

      • aad says:

        hi sir, you are spot on. The corrupt are using the young, brainwashing them to perpetuate themselves, to ensure their future..

        • Joe America says:

          Thanks for stopping by and commenting, aad. I don’t know if there is a conscious effort to hold people back or not, but there is certainly failure at unleashing the might of ambition and competence.

    • Anastasia says:

      Funny. The same thought related popped in my head

  11. 4. The moral shape-shifters.

    Joe, I had the impression when there, that the majority was of this type.

    For example, a seemingly loving family, wife goes to Church and participates wholeheartedly, then comes home to both physically, verbally abuse her servants. Husband is upstanding by day, and a freak by night in KTV and girlie bars, hourly motels. But moral shape-shifter is the most apt description, just felt they make up the majority.

    Sent Part III your way.

    Welcome back.

    • Joe America says:

      Got the article. I think we are all shape shifters to some extent. The ones I am talking about change their whole character, a major morph job. Mercado from willing accomplice, betrayed, to the best blood hound in the Philippines tracking down the paper to prove Binay’s bad deeds. Poe from silent partner to political opponent. Their essential character stays the same, I suppose, but their behaviors and goals change dramatically.

  12. Gemino Abad says:

    Thanks, Joe America! May the wave grow bigger at the right moment! Jimmy

  13. karl garcia says:

    Home is where the heart,brain and stomach is.You are home Joe.
    May the wave turn into a tsunami of anti-Binays.

    • karl garcia says:

      Speaking of stomach,how was the food in Malaysia and Singapore?

      • Joe America says:

        The food in Malaysia was hot and spicy, and in Singapore, very cosmopolitan and varied. There are a lot of Japanese and Chinese outlets in both nations, also Indonesian and Thai. A lot of American chains have a place in Singapore, and in Kuala Lumpur, too, come to think of it. We were in the cities and so did not get out to sample the local foods. Pork is not so common in Malaysia and I did not like the morning “beef” bacon. No one does beef like the US, of course. And no one does pork like the Philippines. Of course. 🙂

  14. Lilit Trinidad says:

    Welcome back, Joe! Yes, here’s hoping the wave you speak of becomes a storm surge, a tidal wave, a tsunami. The signs are encouraging. Even the cash-oriented — oops, sorry — cause-oriented groups have weighed in, coincidentally soon after the CA freeze order.

    But just in case, in the end — and only if — it still looks like the big, bad wolf will win, I’m going to pray Trillanes runs, and wins, as Vice-President. That should be fun. Every firecracker, every backfiring car….

  15. So many things happened along the way. But with Binay being the new Princess Elsa of the new country, I hope soon the whole family will have a concert where they will sing “My Way”. And hopefully, by May 2016, the Binays will have their own “place in Bilibid”.

    Interestingly, the Philippines’ very much well-loved militants (sarcasm) seemed to have shot themselves in the foot. First, the Veloso issue, where they blamed her imminent execution on Aquino, and even when her life was spared (for now), they were still very ungrateful. Instead of sympathy, the Filipinos turned their noses on the Velosos and their militant backers literally overnight. And with the recent Valenzuela fire, it seems the militants are preparing for something once again. I will not be surprised if they will blame Aquino (not the owners of the factory, who are reportedly Chinese) rather than blaming Valenzuela mayor Gatchalian. It seems that no matter what, the militants are in a lose-lose position. Recently, to quote the Inquirer, they “broke their silence” on Binay and scolded him. But if you read between the lines of their scolding, they still somehow manage to blame it on Aquino, and at the same time not fully condemning Binay. Rather than be praised for finally speaking out against Binay, for the Filipinos, it seems to be too little, too late.

    Joe (or should I say Ronald?), I did some research on the militants and possible links to Binay, and the results are very disturbing. You know Harry Roque? The lawyer of the Laude case, who wants Aquino out? And who is sometimes seen with the militants? He’s *openly* pro-Binay, openly praising him in his blog. And more disturbing is some information I found on JV Bautista, Binay’s current spokesman. As it turns out, Bautista is a former party-list representative of the militant party-list Sanlakas(?) and a former provincial chair of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (one of the militant groups). Another militant linked to Binay is Vencer Crisostomo, chairman of Anakbayan and (former?) assistant of former Binay spokesman Remulla. No wonder the militants are either silent on Binay or reluctant to criticize him: they, or at least the higher-ups, are his allies!

    • Joe America says:

      Joe, not Ronald. It confuses me, and for sure, readers. I even sign my emails to my daughters in the US as Joe from time to time. Red-faced . . . me.

      When I do a “slimeball” rating, I think Harry Roque will rise to the top, along with the leftist whackos who will step on any dead body for a cheap political shot.

  16. Slightly off-topic, but it looks like the Duterte Defense Force is in full swing right now. The Philippine Daily Inquirer should be renamed the Philippine Duterte Inquirer. Only in the Philippines would you have people who are against human rights group and actively condone violations of human rights. Que Horror!

    • Joe America says:

      You can tell a lot about the Inquirer based on the Photos they run. They pick the worst for President Aquino. Their latest of Poe is a classic. A hard glint in her eye as she barks back at Binay about experience. I need to see if I can find it.

      • And I just looked around. It’s not just PDI. The whole internet is full of these “Dutertards”, who think that just because Davao is one of the safest cities in the world doesn’t mean he can do the same for the Philippines. We need to look no further than Binay. “Ganito kami sa Makati”. Was he able to turn the rest of the Philippines into (the good parts of) Makati? No. Same logic for Duterte. I can’t tell if Duterte is genuinely that popular, perhaps even more so than Poe, or it’s just a vocal minority that likes him. Either way, next to Binay, he’s the most disturbing among all the potential presidentiables, and I hope a campaign is done to make sure he doesn’t become President.

        • Joe America says:

          Now you have struck an interest. I don’t know why I haven’t done a bit on Duterte. Perhaps because I find it hard to take him seriously as the nation’s leader. But maybe I should explore further. I just added it to the “future blog” idea list.

          • Joe, I remember when Bisayans and Christians in Mindanao talked of Duterte, there was an almost Wyatt Earp/Doc Holiday air to him. That’s the first layer, tough on crime. Then peel the second layer and you have poor people especially indigenous natives in Mindanao and also Muslims that say he’s built more bridges between people than any other leaders since. That second layer I’d like to hear more of.

        • inquirercet says:

          I have some points to point out about duterte, feel free to correct me if I’m wrong

          1. The numbeo(dot)com survey that ranked Davao as the 9th safest city in the world is a crowd source ranking system. Meaning it depends on online votes not statistics. Filipinos are known for voting online, sometimes even multiple times per poll.

          2. Duterte admittedly kills teenage drug addicts. My problem with that is not the killing but where he draws the line. Anyone capable of taking a life on a whim will not blink at taking a billion pesos. Sorry but his word is not enough. Also, the fact that he never runs out of addicts to kill means the drug problem in Davao never really gets solved.

          3. How does duterte plan to emulate his “peace and order” experiment in Davao on a national scale? Again, sorry but there is just no way he can get away with killing addicts nationwide. Take away that crime buster facade and what does he have left?

          4. If he does win as president and successfully implemented his death squad policy, what do we do after his term expires? Do we have to elect Sara? I just don’t see his style being a longterm solution.

          5. Duterte is a known associate of binay and misuari… Nuff said…

          • davide says:

            Where in the world can you solve the drug problem. It may be lessened, even the rich countries in this world could not stop it how much more for an island nation like the Philippines can eradicate.
            1. Still to be debated or can be questioned whether accurate or not.
            2. Killing addicts are newsinfo only and was never verified, please if you insinuate that he really killed teenage addicts state for a fact evidence against him.
            3. This will be same as Binays mantra na GANITO KAMI SA MAKATI, can he copy it also on a national level? There is always a chance that maybe they can do it but it still remains MAYBE. Then letting them try, is the best options, I’d rather have a president that kills evil rather that have a president that has no balls at all or a president known (?) to be corrupt.
            4. If and when Duterte will win, I am willing and I think lots of pinoys are willing to experiment the KAMAY NA BAKAL to the evildoers, para hindi na pamarisan,
            5. If Duterte is a known as(s)o of Binay by now it could have been known to all.

            • davide says:

              By the way @Joe,
              Maayo kay ningbalik ka na sa imong pagsuwat, gimingaw gyud mi nimo kaayo kay nawala man kadiyot ang mga nindot nga lalis dinhi sa imong blog.
              Daghan salamat sa imong pagbalik para malingaw na sab kami nga nagbasa ug moapil usahay sa mga lalis dinhi sa imong blog.
              More power Joe, really missed your write up.

        • obviously, duterte is one of your least favorite cartoon characters… but, pls don’t equate him with binay. they’re simply diametrically oppossed. binay’s ‘ganito kami sa makati’ is a fake. duterte’s davao, you just have to see for yourself… have you gone there?

  17. Bert says:

    I’m glad you’re back, Joe.

  18. edgar lores says:

    1. Brene Brown makes a distinction between shame and guilt.

    o “Shame means ‘I am wrong.’” It is an inner awareness, an awareness of self.
    o “Guilt means ‘I did something wrong.’” It is an inner and outward awareness, an awareness of self and others.

    2. When a person feels shame, he knows he has broken a norm (or value). When a person feels guilt, he knows not only that he has broken a norm but he feels responsibility or remorse.

    2.1. Shame does not necessarily lead to behaviour rectification; guilt might lead to rectification and healing.

    3. At the back of their minds, the Binays know they are wrong and were/are doing wrong. But there is absolutely no admission of wrongdoing. All we get from them and their spokesmen are denials and palusots.

    3.1. They feel no shame and, much less, guilt. In the vernacular, they are walang hiya. Or the Spanish sin verguenza.

    4. If we look at past examples, say, the Marcoses and Corona, we see the same absence of shame and guilt. Corona still shows his face in public, and the Marcoses not only show their faces but have the gall to show their teeth. The same thing with the three senators. They are brazenly thick-skinned or in the vernacular kapalmuks.

    5. “The shame is ours.” Many are beginning to feel this, but many are still unaware. But of the many that feel shame, how many feel guilt and are ready to do something about it? Like urging others not to vote for Binay? Or turning their backs on a bag of noodles, sardines and a t-shirt?

    5.1. One would wish that the Binays go from denial to admission, from admission to shame, and from shame to guilt… and to Jejomar giving up his ambition. Then we would see that the man-boy is worthy to wear the Boy Scout’s uniform… and be true to the Scout Oath and the Senior Scout Code which ends with: “I will do everything in my power to pass a better Philippines to the next generation.”

    5.2. This is wishful thinking… but, darn it, it would be something, wouldn’t it? Wouldn’t it?

    • Joe America says:

      3. I pondered a lot on the “knows no shame” point. I think thieves are skilled at rationalizations, the inside, psychological kind. When I read how the sense of entitlement just oozes from every member of the family, natural expressions, I tend to think they do not think or feel like humble people do at all, and likely know neither shame nor guilt. I even wonder about kindness. I’m not so sure that even in the back of their minds they believe they are doing wrong.

      Well, armchair psychoanalysis is wobbly ground to stand on, but their deeds are clear, and the volume of projects raided, lies told, investigations avoided, good people slandered, courts stalled or perhaps bought out . . . it is stunningly clear this family is, in the traditional definition, “bad”.

      I don’t know about you, but I am ashamed the Philippines has a crook and liar . . . from all available evidence . . . shaking the Pope’s hand or having a personal dinner with the Chinese ambassador. Or being on the ballot for president.

      Something is wrong. And if there is enough vocal power applied that encourages influential people to move to shame classes 4 and 5, then your wishful thinking has a shot at becoming real. I’d like to see pressure applied on sister city honchos. To name them. Give them national exposure. And ask them if they will endorse Binay or not. Up or down.

  19. andrewlim8 says:

    Here’s a most intriguing comment from Rene Saguisag, something I had been seeking a long time ago re Binay:

    • Joe America says:

      Pretty disappointing, I think, for human rights attorneys – intelligent adults – to be so willing to set aside the hard evidence right before them that crimes were done. Lots of them. For years. And to see that there is a circumstance where that is acceptable. I think poor people have a human right not to be jobbed or ripped off or played and plied for votes.

      Actually, Saguisag seems to me to be EXACTLY the problem. Important person. Reading friendships and influence. Not right or wrong.

    • edgar lores says:

      I read it as the exclusive kinship fostered by fraternal bonds. Here was my comment in the last post:

      “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.”

      The loyalty is not to the greater construct, the nation, but to the lesser construct, the brotherhood.

      Which is very ironic in this case as the Saguisag-Binay brotherhood was forged in the interest of the nation. And now the bonds of that brotherhood is greater than the cause for which it was formed.

      In this sense, Saguisag — and Binay — are traitors to the cause.

    • josephivo says:

      I struggle with utang in the Philippines. When (ex…)friends do not pay me back in time it is not their fault it is mine, how do I dare to ask, to make them feel embarrassed. And in the first place, how can they even ask for money in situations other than live and dead, I’m not an ATM machine, I like to help people on my own initiative, not on their request.

      The logic of my ex-friends I see looking at Binay’s face. “I was your friend in Marcos’ time and yes, I took your money that I never will pay back, but how do you dare to make me feel embarrassed? Shame on you!” It is more than the “greater good” rationalization or the “I can personally make right what is wrong, e.g. my too little compensation” rationalization. Is it misusing the fact that Filipinos do not dare to embarrass someone? And a too loose notion on what is mine and thine?

      Or is it just as everywhere else the knowledge and acceptance that the powerful have the power to do what they please? And many are very narcissistic, so they feel entitled to please themselves first.

      • edgar lores says:

        I struggle too with the utang issue. Here are my thoughts:

        1. Friendship is a relationship of equals. The purpose of a friendship is just that – friendship. It is the sharing of one’s life with another: the joys, the sorrows, the mundane, the jokes, the movies, the food, the entire kaleidoscope of experiences in the moving stream of life.

        2. In all relationships there is the element of power. The element may be idle or active, subtle or gross.

        2.1. In marriages, the balance of power outwardly tilts in favour of the husband in patriarchal societies. The essence of male ego dictates that the husband is in charge. The essence of female wiles dictates the wife accepts the reality or the illusion. In these relationships, as in any hierarchical one, there are the related concepts of duty and obligation, and loyalty and trust. All are primary concerns.

        2.2. In friendships, the element of power is held in abeyance. If overt at all, it is practiced with graciousness and accepted with graciousness. Because friendship is not primarily a hierarchical relationship, the concepts of duty and obligation are secondary to the primary concepts of loyalty and trust.

        2.2.1. For example, if I am earning more than a friend, I will offer to pay more, in terms of amounts and frequencies, when we share meals. And my friend will accept with equanimity. On my side, no duty is invoked and, on his side, no obligation is created. And vice-versa.

        3. However, when money enters the friendship equation in a gross way as in a request for a loan, the purpose of friendship is transformed from a non-utilitarian one to a utilitarian one. Accordingly, the element of power, which heretofore was idle or subtle, comes to the fore.

        3.1. A friend in need comes to you as a supplicant. There and then, the relationship becomes hierarchical, one of inferior and superior. Not necessarily from your side, but from the supplicant’s side. In coming to you for help, the friend gives you the power to grant or to refuse.

        3.1.1. If you refuse, which is an act of power, the friendship may not end, but it may be tarnished. The degree of loyalty and trust diminishes… but may be regained in time.

        3.1.2. If you grant, which is not necessarily an act of power but one of generosity, the idea and fear of non-repayment naturally arises in your mind, but loyalty and trust suppress the twinge of discomfort. You say in your mind, “He is my friend after all, and I can afford to lend him money… and I trust him.”

        4. But with money having changed hands, the dynamic of friendship changes. The notions of trust and loyalty become adulterated with the concepts of duty and obligation. Your friend is now obligated to you and he has the duty to repay you.

        4.1. From the viewpoint of power, the power now shifts and tilts towards the friend. Before, you had the power to grant or to reject. Now, your friend has the power to repay or to renege. Now, you are the one in need, not necessarily of repayment, but of the comfort that your trust was not misplaced.

        4.1.1. If the friend repays in full, the friendship goes back to equilibrium, back to an even keel.

        4.1.2. If the friend repays in part, the friendship is lopsided, but may still be maintained.

        4.1.3. If the friend reneges, the future of the friendship depends on you. You may forgive and forget, or you may regret and remember a burgeoning friendship that is now lost.

        5. Somewhere in the dark roots of the Filipino soul festers the seed of corruption, the neediness that values money over friendship and integrity. I do not know why. It must be from racial memories, from centuries of poverty, oppression and insecurity. When one considers the value of friendship, the loan amount – no matter how great – is a measly sum. But for that measly sum, a Filipino will turn on a friend and forfeit a friendship. He repays your generosity with contempt.

        5.1. This is what Filipino politicians do, don’t they? They pretend to be your friends until they win office, and then – poof! – just like that the vote-supplicant becomes the overbearing overlord. And the trusting voter becomes the supplicant.

        5.2. The shame that the friend feels in not being able to repay you – or in not wanting to repay you – is projected outward and backward towards you. It is not he who should feel ashamed but you! You for wanting him to pay you back! You for shaming him with your demands for repayment!

        5.3. You are now sad. A friend, an ex-friend, has used you and ab-used you. So you are sad, and maybe — just maybe — a little wiser.

        5.4. Money is a barometer of character. And the Binays have a lot of character – bad character.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      It is no wonder Filipinos HATE ME. Because I do not have the philosophy of Rene Saguisag. I have very few friends. And these last remaining friends of mine are hard-core PRINCIPLED.

      If I were to CHOSE between Binay, Duterte and Bong-bong?

      I WOULD NEVER CAST MY VOTE. I do not want to be a party to this corrupt democratic exercise. On the other hand, I’d vote for Duterte incognito with trash bag over my head walking to the polls.

      But, wait-a-minute !!! What if Duterte uses the same justice The Binays, Tius and the accused got? WELL, S.O.L. That should teach Filipinos a lesson. They’d be ranting like me asking for evidence and justice.

  20. Steve says:

    Binay sees the wave coming, and like any surfer who sees a wave he doesn’t like, he’ll duck under it. He knows the wave is on the surface, and under it, undisturbed by its passage, is the ocean. He does not fear the wave, for he has cultivated the ocean, shrewdly, for years, and because at the end of the day his opponents are divided and cannot unite behind any common candidate.

  21. Elizabeth Jimenez says:

    Thank you and welcome back! I miss reading your articles.   edjimenez

  22. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    The Filipinos caught a big fish in a huge wave. It was ERAP!!! Well, it is more of the same in the crime family of The Binays. There will always be waves. Waves created by the Philippine Media to vote for this. Vote for that. It was the Philippine Media that created the Binays. Like they created a host of incompetent corrupt politicians. Intrigue, scandals, corruption is how Philippine Media makes money. They can see the waves rolling in. They tell the people SURFS UP. Grab your boogie boards. Haul ’em in VW Combi. Head to the beach.

    Big waves never stop. There will be waves created by a storm. A tsunami by an offshore earthquake. In the U.S. they create breakwater to stop the waves. Lifeguards to stop surfers and wave runners. In the Philippines we allow the waves to come thru because it is the only entertainment avaialble delivered free by the Philippine Media which they can make money.

    • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

      So many big fish in a tsunami was caughted. Marcos was one. Erap two. Enrile. Tanda. Pogi. They never learn a lesson. So are the Binays. All this turo-turo allegations and justice system today is just re-aligining the stars for next Presidential 2016 election.

      There will be more of the same in the next Presidency. More fun for the Filipino people. These are not scandals anymore. They are already numb.

      Scandals are entertainment. Imagine Philippines with no scandals. What is left will be the usual love-triangle tele-novelas.

      • Joe America says:

        It does seem that way, that scandal is the norm. Democracy is dynamic, but the Philippine style is super-charged. You are perhaps going for literary impact, and it for sure registers with me. Thanks.

  23. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    In the Philippines the Filipinos knows no shame at all. I’ve been trolling for nuggets of intelligence in Philippine Media news and comments like trolling for extra-terristrial life in space. Very seldom I hear a ping of intellect. Only the cacophony of unintlligble noise from galaxies gobbled by blackholes that equally unintelligent newspaper moderators allow.

    There is no shame. Shame. Shame. Shame.

  24. Bert says:

    “Binay sees the wave coming, and like any surfer who sees a wave he doesn’t like, he’ll duck under it. He knows the wave is on the surface, and under it, undisturbed by its passage, is the ocean. He does not fear the wave, for he has cultivated the ocean, shrewdly, for years, and because at the end of the day his opponents are divided and cannot unite behind any common candidate.”—Steve

    What I am seeing is different. Binay sees the wave coming, he ducked but it was a futile move, for the tremendous onslaught of the wave was too much for his ability to swim. And now he is drowning. That Binay’s opponents are divided and cannot unite behind any common candidate is a great blessing to Grace Poe. If she could take advantage of the situation and run for president under the banner of one faction of this divided opposition then she’s made. That will leave Mar with just one half of the pie that can starve his already dwindling popularity. Then he is toast. Although drowning, Binay will continue to swim around in circle, knowing that the next president is a friend and expecting he has nothing to fear from a friend. The surprise of his life is waiting for him.

  25. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    The Binays circled their wagons. Time to give up! Surrender! No need to hide behind Aguinaldo and Executive Immunity. The Binay names are sullied. Intentionally denigrated. Save the Filipinos. Please! Please! Give up! Time to pack up! Leave Malacanang.

    The only way this crime family, The Binays, can get back at Filipinos is ADMIT GUILT! Once The Binays admit Guilt. Given up their alleged loot. They can SIT BACK and watch PHILIPPINE MEDIA TROLL FOR ANOTHER SUCKERS to keep up their addiction of the bottom line.

    So the Filipinos may know, ISIS Abu Sayaf was killed by Delta Force deep in ISIS territory in Syria. Obama went to the Rose Garden to tell the world. Obama is still silent on Marwan and the other guy. Both have pictures of their alleged death. Both organization the MILF and PhilGov cannot produce the bodies. Both allegedly died in dubious circumstance. BUT OBAMA IS NOT TELLING THE WORLD. – That is how unreliable the Philippine Media is.

    When Trillanes was holed up in Peninsula Hotel and the Media screamed hoarse to the world “COUP-DE-T’AT” no news wires picked it up! – That is how unreliable the Philippine Media is.

    So, Binays, please give up. Surrender. Your resignation will not cause a blip in international news wires. Nobody believe the Philippine Media abroad anyways.

    • Joe America says:

      “Nobody believe the Philippine Media abroad anyway.” I suppose the editors and owners would say, “Who cares if we are making money?” But what is interesting is all the high-sounding language the publishers produce (see Inquirer web site), and what a mockery the deeds and headlines and weak content make of those words. They are all spin artists. The whole world is spin artists. Not an ounce of dedication to principle or accountability. (Gross generalization useful to make a point.)

  26. I fail to find the articles online but have to trust my memory.

    Front page news of Philstar after elections is Pulse Asia declaring Joe De Venecia as the winner.

    Last Senatorial elections even factoring in the margin of error SWS said Poe no5 while Pulse Asia gave the non answer 2-7.

    We are using surveys based on flawed models.

    The generational shift of the electorate seem to outpace the modeling skills of SWS and PulseAsia.

  27. DAgimas says:

    i once worked for a bank near a city hall. to my knowledge, the local chief executive had no account (who knows?) but one or two officials had. one time, the aide of one of these officials called and said they had some cash for deposit. the manager sent an armored car and a teller to pick it up. the aide called back and said “send back the armored car, mahahalata tayo nyan or something to that effect”

    the aide ended up delivering the deposit just walking to the bank

    that was in the early 90s. now the amount being involved are just staggering

    I believe corruption can be checked if the BIR and the COA plus cooperation from the banks, are doing their jobs. bank personnel know who are corrupt. the ombudsman should offer reward and immunity from suit to anybody who can rat out these corrupt officials

    • Joe America says:

      The key agency today seems to be the Anti Money Laundering Council which is doing generally what you speak of, but after the fact. I believe they have to get a court order to get involved. The Philippines has rather strict Bank Secrecy laws which make what you propose difficult. Those laws should be looked at carefully and tipped to favor law enforcement rather than crooks. I wonder if that is on any legislator’s agenda.

      • DAgimas says:

        I know, the problem is that bank secrecy law. I investigated once a case of a laborer who won a judgement against his employer. his lawyer pocketed the judgement and when I ask for confirmation from the bank that the account belong to that scumbag lawyer, the manager just said, I need a court order.

        what the heck

        • DAgimas says:

          way back when I was in the force, corruption was still not a predicate offense that would merit investigation by the AMLA. now it seems its one of the predicate offense already. that’s a good start but I wonder why only Binay got caught? don’t tell me most corrupt politicians keep their loot under their mattresses?

      • DAgimas says:

        even if there is no AMLA if they are strict with the know your customer doctrine but I guess even the swiss bankers don’t follow

      • karl garcia says:

        The senators do not have any agenda on lifting the bank secrecy law citing losing confidence on banking,that it has a chilling effect and so on.

        MANILA, Philippines – Senators are wary about the proposal of Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Commissioner Kim Henares to lift the bank secrecy law for tax purposes.

        Senators Francis Escudero, Grace Poe, Vicente Sotto, Nancy Binay and Sonny Angara said a study on the impact of the proposal on the confidence of banking industry players in the system should first be conducted.

        Henares said the move is in line with the country’s establishing a single and global standard in tracking tax fraud.

        Escudero said existing laws, including the bank secrecy law and the Anti-Money Laundering Act, already authorize the BIR to conduct financial probes on certain individuals for tax purposes.

        “Any move to force private individuals to open their bank accounts for government scrutiny might be too much,” he said.

        “The current exceptions to the bank secrecy law such as corruption investigation and AMLC (Anti Money Laundering Council)’s powers on private individuals, I believe, is sufficient,” he added.

        Escudero, chairman of the Senate committee on finance, said he has filed a bill requiring all public officials to sign a waiver of the secrecy of their bank deposits with the filing of their statements of assets, liabilities and net worth.

        Poe said Henares’ proposal might affect the banking industry. “The matter should be studied. The banking industry should be consulted,” she said.

        She expressed concern that the public might lose faith in banks if their accounts are opened for scrutiny by the BIR.

        “If this happens the economy may suffer. Anyway the BIR meantime has the ways and means to run after tax cheats pending any amendment,” she said.

        Sotto proposed that the BIR submit a draft measure to Congress “so we can debate on the issue.”

        Angara, chairman of the Senate ways and means committee, said there is a need to weigh the costs and benefits. But he said he believes Henares “is correct that the trend is towards an easing of restrictions.”

        “We must determine if the benefits outweigh the costs. The benefits are better tax administration by eliminating fraud, misdeclaration and concealment of income, while the costs may include capital flight and loss of confidence in the banking system,” he said.

        He said there should be safeguards, especially with respect to privacy and personal security, if the bank secrecy law is lifted.

        “In the United States, there is a tax advocates office to keep an eye on regulator abuses,” he said.

        Chilling effect

        Binay said the BIR proposal might cause a chilling effect not only on the general population but also the banking industry.

        “I understand where Commissioner Kim is coming from as far as taxation is concerned, but her proposal has a chilling effect on the banking industry since there are more disadvantages than advantages,” she said.

        She said peace and order issues, including kidnapping, should be given priority over Henares’ proposal

        • Joe America says:

          Disappointing. Study is a way of killing bills. How hard is it to consider international standards and follow them? The Philippines is already a haven for money laundering and deals supporting human trafficking and other illicit activities not included in Escudero’s proposed bill covering public officials. They worry about the banks but not the effect of being a third world country, by reputation, in the international business markets.

          Impunity reigns. Irregular common sense reigns.

          • karl garcia says:

            Organized crime,and other illicit activities can be lessened as they say follow the money.
            The lawmakers are afraid that the banks will run out of depositors, bank secrecy would not cause bank runs.
            Sure it won’t solve all the problems,of tax evasion and money laundering,but it will help.
            Just like the land reform argument that congressmen won’t allow land reform because they are landowners,The lawmakers won’t pass lifting secrecy laws because they have secrets.

          • neo canjeca says:

            What is the study about?

            who is the more honest group of taxpayers, the politicians or the businessmen?
            Who pays more taxes a senator or a congressman?
            what is the record on tax evasion among the professions?
            who pays correct taxes the lawyers, the accountants or the doctors?

            who really is the original cook(s) of the bank secrecy law, the authors in Philippine Congress?

      • Henry says:

        It does seem that the country’s anti money laundering and bank secrecy act (BSA) should be revamped to be more stringent. Many have the mistaken notion that “secrecy” in BSA means keeping deposit information secret. On the contrary, the act puts a limit to what could be considered “secret” by imposing to banks disclosure, monitoring and reporting responsibilities. Put the onus on the banks and fine them dearly for failing to report suspicious activities (to be defined by the council and not by banks). I am reminded of ningas kugon, which seems to be what our AML and BSA regulations were constructed to be. .

        • Joe America says:

          The only way to stop drug dealing and human trafficking is to cut off the financial pipelines, and to refuse to be strict in doing that seems bizarre to me. See my comment to Karl Garcia. The legislators seem focused on protecting their benefactors rather than “little people” who are abused by crooks who operate with financial impunity. This whole privacy argument is nonsense. Banks won’t fail. They might have to do some work.

  28. sonny says:

    Welcome back, Joe!!

    Did a little time-traveling while you were out with the family. Just finishing off THE MORO WAR by James Arnold (2011), story-woven chronicle of how the US Military took the hand-off from Spain’s military solution to the Moro-Philippine problem. Events took place at Sulu-Zamboanga-Mindanao from 1902-1913. A single highlight for you: How the US artillery and Indian warfare tactics won this war; a bigger lesson: the Moros and Filipinos must face the lessons of those years because the reasons for non-unity and compromise are still here very much with us.

    Good to see you again, Joe. 🙂

    • Hey, sonny, any chance you can do a book review/summary for us?

      On Indian Wars affecting tactics in Philippine Insurrection (1. Luzon/Visayas/N/East Mindanao and 2. Muslim Mindanao), the contributions of Black-Americans, the buffalo soldiers, both cavalry and infantry units, have not yet been fully explored. The bulk of the desertions were of black soldiers, but not just desertion actually switching sides, .

      The black soldiers that did decide to stay, were more adept at counter-insurgency having prosecuted said strategy as non-Whites during the Indian Wars in the Wild West. It’s been said that the black’s anti-guerilla tactics was closer to today’s population centric-counter insurgency. How much of their flavor of counter-insurgency was transferred to the Philippine theatre, I don’t quite know (was this mentioned in “the Moro War”?)

      Remnants of the buffalo soldiers did mop up operations in the non-Muslim parts of Mindanao, but I believe they played no part in the Muslim insurgency operations. The difference in the insurrections up north and the one against Muslim Filipinos, has to be scrutinized further, I hope Arnold’s book does this.

      I know under Gen. Leonardwood (Pres. Teddy Roosevelt’s wrestling buddy) a couple of expeditions to Liguasan marsh were undertaken. It seems most of the history written about the Moro wars focus on Sulu, with the .45 caliber taking on a legendary status. The 1911 pistol usually gets lump in to this legend, but since the crates of these pistols didn’t leave NYC til around mid 1913, thus missing the final major battle–the pistol didn’t play a role, just the round.

      In light of the BBL and Cojuangcos development in that area, I hope more information & history on Liguasan marsh area is covered in Arnold’s book. I agree the lessons of 1902-1913, not just Sulu focused, but also Cotabato area, need to be studied further. This was my go-to book:

      • sonny says:

        on the book review:
        Yes, I’d like to, very much. Some clarifying statements are made in the book about the switch from .38 caliber to the .45

        The book is an engrossing read on how the Bates Agreement came about, the execution styles (commands) of Pershing, Wood, Bliss and the handoff to a Civilian government (Frank Carpenter) and very especially the military conduct of the battles in Jolo and Lanao as seen for the US presidents involved and the American public of those years. And very importantly a clearer picture of, for me anyway, the Moro mind and the evolving American society. The Filipinos, too, of course.

        on the “energy discoveries:”

        I do claim first-name acquaintance with Paul Aquino, Sen. Bam’s father. He and another classmate were in the upper management of PNOC. I will be seeing the senior Aquino in the fall, and “unobtrusively” insert myself into a rumorly conversation about geothermals. 🙂

        • sonny says:


          Thanks for the link. It will be my go-to reference as well in trying to capture some more flavor of Moro Philippines.

        • I will be seeing the senior Aquino in the fall, and “unobtrusively” insert myself into a rumorly conversation about geothermals. 🙂

          sonny, this would be great! LOL!

          As for the book review/summary, looking forward to it. I think it would go well with a Duterte article. Joe’s planning an article on Duterte, who I’ve always been fascinated with since being there–I’m a big fan of the Wild West stories, and by extension Mindanao.

          That’s basically what Mindanao was cowboys, soldiers and Indians–Wyatt Earps (lawmen), the Apaches (de-centralized tribes), Geronimos (or Nant’ans, cult leaders), Jesse James/Billy the Kids (the bandits), Pinkerton’s detectives (private security), Buffalo soldiers/White soldiers (representing two schools of thoughts re COIN).

          Looking forward to your book review, sonny.


      sonny, have you read this wikileak’ed cable?

      5. (SBU) The Department of Energy and Natural Resources
      (DENR) has already identified natural gas and oil deposits in
      three areas of Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago: the
      Cotabato Basin; the Davao-Agusan Basin; and, an area
      straddling Tawi-Tawi and Sulu. The Cotabato Basin, notably,
      includes the 288,000 hectare Liguasan Marsh, straddling the
      provinces of Maguindanao, North Cotabato, and Sultan Kudurat.
      This swamp/marsh — which is an officially declared bird
      sanctuary and game refuge — remains an important MILF
      stronghold, home to an estimated 280,000 Muslims, and an area
      where members of the terrorist Jemaah Islamiya (JI) have
      historically conducted training and sought refuge.

      6. (SBU) The Philippines National Oil Company (PNOC) began
      exploring for oil and natural gas in the Liguasan Marsh area
      in 1994 under Geophysical Survey and Exploration Contract
      (GSEC) 73, which covered all of Maguindanao, North Cotabato,
      South Cotabato, Sultan Kudurat, Sarangani, Davao, and
      Bukidnon provinces of Mindanao. Malaysia’s national oil
      company, Petronas, partnered with the PNOC. By the late
      1990’s, they had located natural gas and/or oil in five
      sites, including Datu Piang (Dulawan) and Sultan Sa Barongis
      in Maguindanao and Lambayong in Sultan Kudurat. According to
      the PNOC, the estimated natural gas deposits in Sultan Sa
      Barongis alone would be enough to fuel a 60MW combined cycle
      power plant for 20 years. The PNOC had hoped to use this gas
      to support the power requirements of Mindanao as well as for
      industrial applications. However, the PNOC and Petronas suspended operations in the Liguasan Marsh area due to
      threats from the MILF and extortion by local mayors and
      political warlords.

      • sonny says:

        LCpl_X, In reading the link on the SBUs, it’s uncanny that what’s different is only time and grand escalation of the circumstances initially faced by the US Army in 1902 to start the military campaign: internecine conflict among Moro datus in mafiosi-like vendetta loops with nothing at stake except right and might as they saw these. The initial push from Spain and the US was to seek a permanent solution to peaceful economics by eliminating the root carriers of slavery and piracy raids archipelago-wide. This degradation of life had to be eliminated in order to enforce “civilizing” societal structures and putting economic equilibria in place as the material engine for progress. The fissures then had a military solution not unlike the ones being dangled by many Filipinos and Moros alike. When civilian solutions could not come to a head then, the US Military withdrew after its last victory in 1913 over the Moros.

        Today the sine-qua-non condition of peace configurations are still muddled.

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks for the welcome, sonny. It’s good to be reaching for the keyboard again instead of my wallet. Travel is a nozzle for the bank account.

      Revisiting that period would be helpful, to ask why five times. Why is it still the same? Why? Why? Why? Why? I have a feeling the answer has something to do with accepting difference, and trust.

      • sonny says:

        Joe, as a history hobbyist my take is with a teleological lens on most events. Hence my “still the same” comment. What I really mean is that unsorted and uncollated and uninterpreted data from the past are not yet fully sifted to make a nice connective bundle of either solid-line or broken-line syllogisms about those events to our present. This becomes really critical especially with energy discoveries like the Lance Cpl points out. The BBL is the case in point. To an optimist, there should be enough economic good to go around. And this ties directly to “accepting difference and trust,” viz. the politics among Moro Filipinos and Christian Filipinos and secular Filipinos.

    • Adrian says:

      This is fascinating read. Those advocating to start another war in Mindanao are total fools! At the time when Filipino Muslims in Mindanao have minimal weapons, they were not totally defeated. There was also a time when a pirate and a charismatic datu almost united the Moros which meant a big problem for the Americans then.

  29. jameboy says:

    The idea of a ‘wave’ representing the clamor of the people to oppose and deny Jojo Binay the presidency is, to me, an ingenious and creative representation of what must and should happen in the coming 2016 presidential election. In fact, it was so creative it won’t be a surprise if a political party will hijack it as a campaign slogan. So ingenious that people would believe it as true and accept it as the reason why the grounds are shaking for the Binays that would eventually expel them all from the political landscape and bring the expected happily-ever-after ending to the whole story.

    And there lies the cacophony of images and the conflicting views of whether there is really a wave in the horizon fermenting or it’s just a part of the never-ending hope of stopping the Binay juggernaut in assaulting the gates of Malacanang.

    I agree with the idea of a ‘wave’ for we Filipinos are no strangers to bandwagon. Right or wrong, we go for it because we are free to do so based on the dictates of our convictions as well as the dictates of the moment. EDSA 1 was the right wave, EDSA 2, not much. The Maguindanao massacre is a horrible wave. So was the PNP debacle in Mamasapano. Then there was the wave of corruption cases commencing from Greedy Gloria Arroyo that went up to Erap and culminated with Napoles and the three stooges (Johnny, Bong & Jinggoy). The waves of killings and stealing riveted us no end to express our indignation and protest for the former and disapprobation and relief for the latter.

    Now this. The vice-president has lording it over in popularity surveys that almost everyone agrees that if election is held today, he will surely bag Malacanang and continue on his merry ways. He and his family have held the Makati people by their balls for decades and he intends to do the same with the country once enthroned in the Palace. But what of the wave? The wave against Binay have been going on for years and have gathered momentum during the 2010 elections where he ran for vice-president. There was allegation of corruption from ghost employees to overpricing of a government building; the unexplained wealth and the bogus charity activities; the conflict of interest in the business in and around Makati, and other shenanigans stamped as ‘Binay’.

    Who can forget the mistress issue the vice-president have acknowledged guilty of? And from all indications, that would be the last and only confession of guilt we’re going to get from Jojo. In so far as his followers are concerned, he’s clean as white (or at least his polo barong is) and the surveys clearly reflect that sentiment.

    While I do not oppose the ‘wave’ analysis I’m more inclined, for historical consideration and nased on present political development, to see the scenario as more of a tide ebbing on the Binays.

    Let me elaborate. Makati came from the Tagalog word “kati”, which means tide. When Don Miguel Lopez de Legaspi, the founder of Manila and first Governor-General of the Philippines, who first spotted the area, asked the name of the place and because of the language barrier, this was misinterpreted by the natives. Thus, pointing to the receding tide of the Pasig River, the natives answered, “Makati na, kumakati na,” meaning “ebbing tide.”

    So there. 👀

    • Joe America says:

      Visual writing. I’m reminded of the time off the California coast when I got swept away in a rip tide. One moment I was near the beach, the next I was several hundred yards off, with a life guard boat chugging past asking if I needed a rescue. Being a calm former Boy Scout, I smiled, declined, and swam sideways to the inbound current, and hitched a ride back to the beach. The Binays need a rip tide. All the way to their friends in China.

  30. bauwow says:

    Great to have you back Uncle Joe!

    It has been more than a year since we wondered, why is still no indignation rally or a million people march to show disgust for the allegations of corruption of the Binays. Two prominent lawyers are even siding with Binay, claiming that it is all just harassment and an overkill!
    No to Binay 2016!!! Altogether now!

    • Joe America says:

      The noise is getting louder, and the desperation from the Binays. Their own nature of entitlement is now working against them. Their reaction to any criticism is to criticize good people back, in ways that are untrue or below the belt. So more and more people are becoming critical of the Binays. They are their own anti-Binay wave-making machine.

      Thanks for the welcome back. The Society was definitely alive and well during my vacation.

  31. IBRSalazar says:

    Hi everybody – Joe has welcomed me back to comment, OK for tomorrow evening’s ACLU article, but I do hope it is OK if I also do so on this important point. Just a few comments here:

    @Joe: working on my own blog has focused and channeled my energies, so it is very unlikely that I shall be spamming again. Each article in my blog equals 50 postings here before, but distilled. Main ideas are now nicely ordered there, no need to repeat them, they are there to be read.

    @josephivo: your point about other waves before inspired me to write an article in my blog regarding increased identification with the state as the key to not losing this wave’s momentum. Some attitudes I mention there I have heard firsthand from people inside and outside the state.

    @sonny: our common history project has opened my eyes to many aspects. OK I pushed ahead, you would like to look into some stuff deeper. I went with intuition to connect some dots and to make a picture out of evidence that is not yet complete, to bring forth further discussions…

    @Edgar: the fixation of Filipinos with money – no not money, simply SURVIVAL – is definitely rooted in the colonial experience. Slavery can make people truly vicious – also Afro-Americans. My article about identification with state and the point Joe noted there is an important example.

    @LCPL_X: the thing about Afro-American soldiers switching sides in the Phil-Am war is very true! There were some truly pissed off about their white commanders calling Filipinos niggers and more. As for the Wikileaks cable, I posted it here a while ago – it is truly an interesting aspect.

    Re Mamasapano I now have a take from a friend of mine, French foreign ex-legionary: possible treachery within the the ranks, military leadership definitely blew it, but worst of all lack of national unity. Jibes well with the take from the other perspective, that of my Tamil grocer, ex-Tiger rebel.

    Re BBL I have a quick brief on the current amended version as a posting in Raissa’s blog…

    • Welcome back, Ireneo!

      I hope you can comment more on FLAG and MABINI.

      edgar lores’ take on brotherhoods there, The loyalty is not to the greater construct, the nation, but to the lesser construct, the brotherhood.

      perfectly describes FLAG and MABINI. I noticed this same phenomena in every organization or group in the Philippines. I remember in a big city, there was a big rumble that sent mall patrons running. I was told it was 2 fraternities fighting.

      The whole concept of groups and organizations attempting to achieve greater things seemed to be absent in the Philippines, always devolving into to personalities, and petty loyalties to personalities. No one’s looking at the big picture.

      I hope you can shed some light on this, re FLAG and MABINI–and what you experienced with them back in your days.

      Thanks again, Ireneo, and welcome back!

      • IBRSalazar says:

        Stanley Karnow, who wrote “In our Image – America’s Empire in the Philippines” described it perfectly when he wrote “The Philippines is tribes in disguise” – it really is in many ways. Unlike their Malay brothers further South – Indonesians especially – the Filipinos never had a real state or nation before the colonial powers came, so MOST of them never really grasped what it really was about. It was just about either being the ones benefitting from the state – “saan tayo may kapit” is the Filipino term for it (where do we have pull), or “nasa puwesto tayo gamitin natin” (we are in power let us use it) – or being opposed to it, indifferent to it or just cheating it where possible – one of my latest articles in my blog.

        The whole brotherhood thing and the state as something to benefit from as much as possible, avoid being harmed by and to cheat when possible was my attitude too for many years as a migrant to Germany – until I found out that the State can be a friend in need, something like an awakening for me, it was when I lost my job and got unemployment benefits but also coaching to become a freelancer, how I messed up my taxes, got a chance to pay them back but with strict time limits and interest. But I guess my first waking up was when I spat on the platform of the Munich MRT many years and was caught by a female security and she told me “do you do that at home, spit on the floor”? That is what got me thinking – they really see the community as an extended home and care for it…

        Brotherhood and blood are important in the Philippines because it is a low-trust society like they say in modern parlance. There were no bigger structures when the Spanish came, they came just to do their business and use the place and the people and those who did come were mostly Mexicans in the beginning, lots of carpetbaggers and fugitives from justice in the homeland for sure. First truly honest to goodness attempts to establish state structures in the Philippines were started ONLY when the Spanish started to rule the Philippine directly in the 19th century. Read one of the e-books from UCal, thanks for the link, about sugar plantations. Negros was basically just badlands until around 1830, but the place my folks come from – Albay – was more or less the same. Attitudes get passed over generations, many of them unconsciously. Malcom Gladwell wrote about that in one his books – that American Southerners have sensitive attitudes to honor passed from their mainly Scottish and Irish ancestors, something even proven in psychological tests, and shown by the famous feud between the Hatfields and the McCoys. BTW the famous book about Philippine clannishness – An Anarchy of Families – was written by Dr. Alfred McCoy, wonder if his background, if he has actually has it, helped him understand things better.


        FLAG I did not avail of back in the days. They basically wanted us to be “martyrs” for the “cause” so that people can protest about the “injustice” of our being jailed, so three of us took our own lawyers back then. My lawyer was Raissa Robles’ late father, Raissa’s sister is one of my mother’s top students in German and still visits her until now. So that stuff about brotherhood or sisterhood is even adopted by foreigners who stay for a long time. Because it is the only thing you can really rely on. Even among top academics you have schools of thought that behave like tribes in the end. This is why IMHO the democratic education of Filipinos by Americans FAILED. A few true believers were there for sure, but I think the clique that acted the way the American colonizers expected them to for the most part only played perfectly to their expectations and told them what they wanted to hear – Filipinos can be very good at that, they have learned that art in centuries of colonial rule – then reverted to being themselves pretty quickly after the Americans left. Just like they became “Christian” centuries ago and started worshipping saints like their old anitos. What to expect if for example large parts of Negros hardly had priests until around 1830?

        Then you have the split-level consciousness, the shape-changer thing you wrote about. Ateneo theologists wrote about split-level Christianity, meaning not really acting Christian. The Philippines is split-level in its entire culture for the most part. Clean and dirty kitchen. What you try to look like and what you really are. English language (use to be Spanish) if you want to sound nice and elegant and lofty and Tagalog or whatever to swear + curse. Now guess in what language most Filipinos are more honest about what they truly feel?

        Our student council head made a funny test with some school clubs, we were third year. He asked us to draft some project proposals and write about their goals and purposes. Goals our group – I wrote the proposal – wrote some nice-sounding bullshit, purposes we wrote fund-raising. He laughed and said goals you wrote what you want it to sound like, purposes you wrote what you really intend to do, caught you there! Many problems the Philippines has stem from that split-level consciousness, which is why many nationalists want to do away with English altogether. Not because English is bad, but because it is often used in a perfunctory way without real understanding, like Latin in the Middle Ages. The true consciousness of many Filipinos is not in the “American simulation mode” – to use IT terminology, in the “Windows”, it is in the native language which is often just DOS.


        One reason why IMHO Americanization failed – those who passed it one were running a good Windows simulation on top of their DOS, but every “copy” got worse with the years. Whatever modernization is attempted in the Philippines has to start with what the people really are and go from there. It is IMHO already happening more in Mindanao as of now, because people there are not ashamed to be themselves, don’t try to pretend to be what they are not as much as the people in Luzon. The acknowledge that they are tribal, but they have a true civic culture growing with Mindanews and CANA. Even Duterte is known to listen to and consult with community leaders in Davao – Lumads, Muslim and Christians.

        Anyway thanks. 🙂 One more thing I would like to share here from my friend who is ex French Foreign legion. He told me man knock it off, the Philippine situation is not the fault of any of your colonizers in the end. In a way he is right because the Spanish would not have managed without massive support by native elites in all the provinces, and Joe was right about them being the true occupiers, these guys were slavers after all when the Spanish came, much like Moro datus. Anyway he told me this – you Filipinos slept too long, got too comfortable, now Mamasapano and China have woken all of you up like a splash of really cold water. But I fear it is already too late, he said, sitting down very sadly. About your comment that China is flooding Southeast Asia with drugs he just laughed and told me “you only heard about that now? They have been doing that for 20 years already!” – now that man is like a brother for me, someone who has backed me when I was right and told me when I was wrong in no uncertain terms, an example of what you mean by DISAGREEABLE, the right kind of brotherhood, don’t know what motto those guys have but they do live by semper fides (always loyal) as well for those they truly care for…

        Whew now this is a longer posting again, but more focussed and every word truly counts here – unfortunately I never went to German military service, I’ve been told they teach you one thing there – before you communicate, condense your message to remove repetitions… This is my answer to many discussions I have been following in “exile”, did me well to have time to think about it, now my answer is structured, even if it is long. Some of the stuff here will certainly land in a few articles in my blog, distilled and summarized. The thought process I am outlining here is not yet fully finished, I am also looking for answers like so many here. But what I do see is that you have observed a lot about Filipinos and a lot of it hits the quick. I am quite curious about how others see this…

        • josephivo says:

          Well written, very summarizing, looking at past and current. But waiting to read your view on the future, the long term view, the first baby steps.

              • IBRSalazar says:


                To what extent do Filipinos STILL see the Philippine State as a foreign body, either to be used for one’s own advantage when one is in power, which is something many Spanish colonial authorities and their local Filipino partners in the principalia liked to do, or to be cheated as much as possible because it is perceived as not caring for the common people anyway? Because as long as Filipinos do not see the state as their own and all Filipinos as fellow citizens, and I mean all honest Filipinos from elite to masses, then all efforts against corruption, cheating the state and taking advantage of it will ultimately be useless, whatever institutions you put up to do the job.

                Joe’s answer to that:

                Very striking view. In that context, they are the occupiers of the Philippines, much more impactful and harmful and dangerous than the traditional occupiers. They are wolves in sheep skin.

                It is in the same line as your article on the continuing occupation of the oligarchs.

                And my answer to Joe explains why I prefer to be elsewhere – just like MRP:

                Welcome back Joe. I developed this view by being in Europe for a long time – and finally learning the see the state as a friend and not as an enemy. So I go to MY municipal hall just five minutes from here, went to MY unemployment office (who really helped me get out of terrible times) also five minutes away, and to MY police station just ten minutes away, knowing I will be treated properly even without knowing anyone inside, knowing no one will try to ask for bribes or anything else.

                And why should I sacrifice myself for a state or a nation where even those who pretend to be for the nation just want to further their own group at the expense of others? Fortunately I did not have to apply for recolonization like MRP, I just had to drop one nation, the one I care for more in the heart, for the one I am loyal to in the head. The article you quoted also mentions patronage as a reason for honest people leaving… Even many groups that think they care for the country only care for themselves in reality.. or most leftists and nationalists go by the my group’s way or the highway principle.

        • It is IMHO already happening more in Mindanao as of now, because people there are not ashamed to be themselves, don’t try to pretend to be what they are not as much as the people in Luzon.

          You hit the nail right square on the head here, Ireneo. Much of the idiosyncracies found in the Visayas and Luzon aren’t really present in the Muslim and indigenous parts of Mindanao, and that’s mostly due to having an intact culture–the irony is that the damaged culture is the one attacking the culture that’s intact.

          The term “idiosyncrasy” originates from Greek ἰδιοσυγκρασία idiosynkrasía, “a peculiar temperament, habit of body” (from ἴδιος idios, “one’s own”, σύν syn, “with” and κρᾶσις krasis, “mixture”).

          Idiot is a word derived from the Greek ἰδιώτης, idiōtēs (“a private citizen”, “individual”), from ἴδιος, idios (“private”, “one’s own”), An idiot in Athenian democracy was someone who was characterized by self-centeredness and concerned almost exclusively with private—as opposed to public—affairs. (from Wikipedia)

          In Mindanao, Muslims and indigenous peoples, “They acknowledge that they are tribal, but they have a true civic culture growing…”, yes I did see more participation, but also saw this, “MOST of them never really grasped what it really was about. It was just about either being the ones benefitting from the state – “saan tayo may kapit” is the Filipino term for it (where do we have pull), or “nasa puwesto tayo gamitin natin” (we are in power let us use it) – or being opposed to it, indifferent to it or just cheating it where possible”.

          I’m reminded of the closing scene of Scorsese’s “Gangs of New York”:

          Looking forward to your comments tomorrow, Ireneo.

          • IBRSalazar says:

            Almost nobody sees the big picture, almost nobody truly cares about the whole Philippines or all Filipinos. Many of those who are for modern transparency ignore the needs of the “dark-skinned Filipinos”, like MRP wrote, are only about progress for their own group.

            The entire Philippines is mostly about the more educated and/or rich and/or whiter ones looking down on the more ignorant, poorer and/or darker ones, and the latter envying and crabbing the former. Very postcolonial setup, no unity just groups against groups.

            My take on Philippine identity, of a nation as a community formed by a common destiny:

            19th-century definitions of nation and people are outdated. The modern definition of a nation that I like the most is that of a Schicksalsgemeinschaft, a community united by fate. This is probably THE definition best suited to define what a Filipino is.

            Karl’s perceptive answer which fits the Gangs of New York scene:

            Bahala na is fatalism if a nation ia a product of fate then a nation is a bunch of bahala na gangs.

            my answer to that being:

            In the most negative scenario – yes. If you continue to accept fate and not do anything. Iyong nangyari na at nandiyan na, (what already happened and is there,) accept it then you shape it from there.

            • IBRSalazar says:

              And here is prima facie evidence of what I saw from the beginning when I came into this blog – Karl is one of the few who definitely think and act in terms of the entire nation:


              Given the origins of Philippine nationalism in the military, it is really no surprise:


              The Bayot brothers in 1822, Andres Novales in 1823, the Cavite mutiny in 1872, Quezon was a military son too, Trillanes in the tradition of Novales somehow… The grandfather of one of our family friends BTW was an Andalusian soldier married to a Bulacan woman who changed sides to become a Katipunero, her father a colonel keeping in family tradition… the history of the country is more complex than many nationalists dare to admit.

              • Joe America says:

                I think it is important to establish some general terms of participation that will prevent a repeat of the previous problem that occurred when your contributions dominated the discussion thread and made it Irineo’s blog, and not the Society’s. Those terms would be:

                (1) To exercise restraint so that your comments are “occasional” as opposed to frequent, and so that other commenters are allowed to engage between themselves without you always inserting your views. Let them have some space to work.

                (2) I don’t mind a reference link to your new articles, because I understand the challenge of getting a new blog off the ground, and I do want yours to succeed and become prominent (I’ve added it to the Blog Center’s roster of blogs). But reference links should not be repeated, as that is a form of spam, or use of the blog for purposes other than intended. For that matter, all links should be occasional and not frequent. Generous use of links makes the blog cold and dry and boring. Judicious use enriches knowledge.

                I welcome your participation because you offer up some great insights, personal knowledge and history. I’d love to see you assume a posture of engagement here that is selective and meaningful, but that does not suffocate other contributors.

                These same guidelines apply to all participants, and I may incorporate them in the terms if that becomes necessary.


              • IBRSalazar says:

                Joe, you’re welcome, and thanks also – especially for the inclusion in the blog center, i did notice my inclusion because I have Piwik and saw the stuff coming in from there the first time yesterday. I can see the manager shining through in your additions to the rules:

                1) Yes, I will. Some major points I have made now as answers to other people’s comments in this subthread, and some answers to the nearly 1000 posts discussion of the past weeks. But that will be all for now, save responses to my posts already made. OK one comment on Binay being Hitlerian in another subthread, but I think that is very relevant to the topic. Luckily I have my blog to mainly concentrate on with my own articles. Now I have made around 10% of comments, my quota shall be 5% for future articles like ACLU.

                2) Same as 1) – no repetitions of links in this subthread as well, just references where I deemed them to be helpful to understanding the topic or my response in a deeper way. Just like the posts I just made are are a one-time thing to frame my point of view and my thinking on matters, these links are as well and will not be my constant style. Just to give people an idea what I mean with some stuff, because my thinking may indeed appear outlandish to many who do not know the background behind it. My own blog has given me room to flesh it out, to give it a clearer background that may be referred too anytime. No more links in the following articles, readers here now know my blog exists that is enough, anyone interested can click on my name and follow if interested. The little I know about marketing and advertising – you are the pro on that – tells me that overexposure is bad for any brand name. Even if sometimes you need to make a blast you have to dose it well.

                The main reason for my own blog is that I have noticed on how little or how incomplete background knowledge many posters in the Philippine blogosphere operate. Trying to explain all the time things over here became repetitive and I got on people’s nerves. Now all who are truly interested can get the background knowledge in my blog and have a better understanding of what led to things – whether they post at Raissa’s, GRP or here. You indirectly gave me the push to start my own blog when you wrote that knowledge is the way to confidence and out of victimhood. Now I can use my German habit of lecturing to foster learning in my blog, for the benefit of all. And discuss better here and elsewhere.

                One of my coming articles will highlight the development of the Philippine blogosphere – GRP, AntiPinoy, JoeAm, Raissa etc. and how it has overall increased awareness, where each site has its strengths and weaknesses. A sort of who is who with an evaluation of where each site stands, what its tendencies are to help informed netizens form a picture. What may follow at some point is a similar evaluation of Philippine media. So we all can continue to work together, even if in some things we agree to disagree, for the purpose of creating a more informed and proactive Philippine citizenry and netizenry. Since I am now posting more at Raissa’s and a little bit at GRP plus taking care of my own blog – and working on new IT projects (I just happen to be on my second day sick today, which is why I am unusually active again, next week is back to onsite work) even hyperactive me (I was a true devil as a child, my yaya chased me all over the place) will not have the energy, much less the inclination to go the same way as before. Besides, my goal is for the netizenry and citizenry to teach and learn, to think more for themselves and become more proactive, so it is a good to remind me to give other people room to grow their thinking.


                BTW you asked how one can deal with someone like me in a class. First two school years my grades were awful – I was just plain bored with school and annoyed my teachers. Repeated my first Kindergarten year because I kept telling strange imaginative stories to all and sundry. In Grade 2 a teacher gave me a 5 on an essay with the comment “please write what you are told to write” – I had gone into the topic and branched out… 🙂

                In Grade 3 I got a math teacher who just returned from the USA with modern methods she was assigned to try out for the U.P. College of Education to which our school belonged – not to DepEd! She realized I needed additional stuff to keep me quiet, so she gave me more advanced topics from the new self-study program. My grades skyrocketed…

                This is what I have done for myself now by making my own blog, which is about learning and giving things a stronger background. Your focus is more on current events, just like Raissa’s blog is. I will contribute and occassionally link to backgrounders – sparingly.

              • Joe America says:

                Your ability to produce powerful stuff in volume is ideal for the blogosphere, which is why I placed your blog in the “top blogs” column at the Blog Center. It already is far and away better than some long-established blogs here. I look forward to your article on blogging. I’ve long held that the community of bloggers, and the commenters, should not view each other as competitors, but as compatriots. The more powerful the collective voice, the better. Eventually the negativists will find their own place, and it will not be dominant.

              • IBRSalazar says:

                Yes, I think the goal should be a kind of mutual respect and acceptance, even if individual opinions may vary. Similar to what US Democrats and Republicans USED to have before, unfortunately they are losing that every year. Now all have the goal better Philippines.

                Where they differ is how to achieve it + WHAT kind of Philippines and Filipinos they mean. Now I have had some exchanges with Sonny about how to define Philippine history stages.
                My history series shows my new view. Part I – Territory was the infancy of the Philippines. Infants are formed by natural forces beyond their control. Part II – State was the childhood of the country, as it was formed under the tutelage of Spanish and American parents plus some own efforts at self-definition, including a short phase of being kidnapped by the Japs. Part III – Nation was the teenage phase of the nation trying to define its identity.

                Mamasapano and China – this is where sonny and I agree – was the painful shock that brings the transition into young adulthood, realizing here I am in the world, what the hell am I doing here, I’m on my own now, where is the next place for me to go. My French foreign ex-legionary friend said it even more drastically – don’t blame any ex-colonizers, you guys got too comfortable, you slept for too long, now you have woken up but it may be too late. In this context, it is important to make use of the best of all insights available.

                Once I have contextualized the major blogs, I will quote major articles that give insights, maybe even summarizing different views to give people food for thought. Finally, I see it as important to encourage independent thinking among Filipinos. Your open discussion here was a very good example of that. Filipinos tend to be “denkfaul” – lazy in thinking – and delegate thinking to “thought leaders” the way they relied on the local voodoman and later on the Spanish friar, afterwards on the American Thomasite teacher for predigested stuff. They are often afraid to confront strong thinkers like me, which is why I respect those who dare confront me directly but politely like Karl does very often. And I luckily have enough of the Westerner in me to tell the wannabe datu I also have in me to shut up and listen… 🙂

                The Philippines and Filipinos are right now in the process of defining who they really are, where they want to go and who they want to be in the future. That will be important as well for a mature relationship with the ally and ex-colonial power USA – free of the postcolonial, “adolescent” behavior that alternates between servility and hostility. Now we in our blogs can only show different possibilities, in the end the nation as a community will have to decide by itself. The generation of Alan Peter Cayetano, Sonny Trillanes and Karl Garcia is on its way there. The generation of Bam Aquino even more so. But the true watershed now shall be the 2016 election. Like the writings on some jeepneys say, there is a “passing side” (where you can pass safely) and a “suicide” – which leads to hell.

              • sonny says:

                @ IBRS

                “… Part I – Territory was the infancy of the Philippines. Infants are formed by natural forces beyond their control. Part II – State was the childhood of the country, as it was formed under the tutelage of Spanish and American parents plus some own efforts at self-definition,…”

                Because of the unfettered slave-raiding of the Islamic Malays (Moros), the nomadic/tribal identity, including territory (Sulu, Zamboanga, Lanao region) came under the conquest economy of the Spanish and American colonization juggernaut. The Philippine future territory was so defined a de facto state by these events. Under the same subsumptions, the current territorial claims of China must be resisted.

    • The BBL is now in plenary session of the House, after being approved in the Committee level. I hope it will be fine tuned there and reconsider Lobregat’s concern.

  32. jameboy says:

    Jojo Binay and his clans. What do we make of them? For one, they’re good people. Yes, you read it right, they’re good. So good that former president Cory Aquino, after the fall of Marcos, made her first official act of appointment by putting Jojo Binay at the helm of Makatis’ driver seat.

    So good that since 1986 up to the present, no one has been able to extricate them from their hold to power in Makati. The mayoralty race there has become a game of musical chairs with the Binays monopolizing it. They’re so good they owned Makati.

    The Binays are so good they were able to hijack the bulk of the Erap masa knowing fully well that after his fall most of them will be like lost sheep that will need another shepherd to guide and massage their egos and remind them that they, the meek, will inherit what’s left of Pinas.

    And let’s not forget they are so good that even the President cannot utter a word that might be considered an attack to a family that has been friends with his family. PNoy, unlike Grace Poe, can remain silent about the Binays and get a pass without anybody complaining about it. You see, PNoy is much, much closer as a friend to Jojo Binay than to Grace Poe. Rambotito is like a family with the Aquinos. The same with the Estradas.

    To be that close to the two prominent families that reflects the elite and the masa in our society makes for some native intelligence. To be linked with the haves and have-nots, at least that’s what the images project, takes savviness and cunning mentality for future political maneuvers and plan the result of which we have witnessed in the dominance of Jojo Binay in popular survey ratings.

    How good is Jojo and his family from now up to 2016 remains an open question. Yes, there has been some slides in the ratings but how significant will it be to say that the Binays are done with is hard to determine at this point. Is it the wave that will force Jojo to quit the race? Right now it seems it’s not. The way those corruption allegations hug the headlines make it appear that everything is going against the Binay’s way but since Jojo has been so good I wouldn’t take the current situation as the beginning of the end of the family. At least, not yet. They are so good they are capable of coming up with a surprise that will tilt the balance in their favor.

    With that as a possibility, I say, watch out. 👀

    • Joe America says:

      I’d agree with you if we substitute the word “skilled” for good. The term “good” to me has a moral quality of doing right over wrong. In that context, the Binays are far from good.

  33. Fix your Twitter button
    You have it set up to say “via @joeamerica”

    But that’s MY Twitter handle
    And you’ve hijacked it

    Fix your website STOP USING MY NAME

    • Joe America says:

      I appreciate your concern. Please give me background on your use of the name via the “contact us” tab above. When did you start using the name? How do you use it? Why is it only now a concern when I have been using the name for years?

      Further discussion of this matter in the blog thread will result in them being deleted as spam, as that is not the purpose of the discussion forum.


      • JoeAMERICA says:

        I’ve been using the name since 2002

        And I have sent emails to your contact us page YOU DON’T RESPOND!!

        And what you don’t seem to notice is that I’m talking about my Twitter handle that you have hi jacked my page keeps getting tweets that have been created via your websites Twitter button

        You don’t own the Twitter handle @joeamerica

        I do so stop using and don’t threaten me by saying you’ll delete my response they aren’t dpam you are the spammer and I need you to STOP USING MY TWITTER HANDLE IN ASSSOCIATION WITH YOUR WEBSITE!!!

        I don’t think you realize your readers think I’m you and I have a unique position to make you look bad to them so once again STOP USING MY TWITTER HANDLE!!!!

        • Joe America says:

          You sent me one e-mail which I ignored because of the hostility, similar to that exhibited here.

          My twitter handle is @societyofhonor.

          Kindly stop using the blog discussion thread to demonstrate how obnoxious Americans can be. Use the “Contact Us” e-mail address.

  34. Ley... HelloJoe says:

    Binay will no resign. He is glued to his position. In his ill belief, resigning is an admission of guilt. Worse, courts and congress lack the moral consensus and teamwork. People who can voice out fatigues quickly and will move on with their individual responsibility which is primarily their family.
    The rule of law in the Philippines is too weak. it is slow to punish an imminent and dangerous political figure. The court lacks common sense!!!

    Welcome back Joe!!

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks, Ley. My son, in viewing Leyte out of the plane window, fairly well screamed “wow, that’s really a big island!”. Sigh.

      The courts are indeed a huge barrier to progress, as are attorneys. This afternoon’s blog will deal with this matter, courtesy of Lance Corporal X.

  35. Dwight O. Nacaytuna says:

    The politically mature and intelligent Filipinos WILL NOT VOTE FOR BINAY in 2016!

    • Ley... HelloJoe says:

      sadly, there are few politically mature Filipinos. If Philippine court cannot send The binays to jail, it only suggests that our very own justice system encourages corrupt politicians to keep running for office. The court should be able to punish and should not allow any special request from the Binays. Just get rid of him and stop wasting people’s resources and time. Binay is guilty and I don’t need to hear why he is not.

  36. Juan Masipag says:

    Welcome back Joe I was in a hiatus myself for sometime, this would be outside of your article for now … but this nagging thought has been pestering my mind … Everyone has been somewhat downplaying the chances of Sec. Mar Roxas in winning the presidency that is why some quarters are toying with a Poe as president and the good Sec. as VP (well once again). But taking into the considerationpronouncement by the MILF leadership that they trust only this present leadership and believes that peace can only be achieved with the Pnoy govt. I do feel that Mindanao for that matter will carry Sec. Roxas towards the presidency (whether or not the BBL is passed or not) … and the Sec. being a Waray will surely garner majority votes from the Visayas … which leaves us with Luzon which has been always a hub of opposition to any current administration … still right now we not only a lot of netizens who are aghast with the Binays but I for one has heard from people of all walks of life cringe at the mere mention of the surname Binay … so what gives? I for one does not believe in those surveys (they are businesses and they need income, so they can always be bought at the right price) …

  37. Bing Garcia says:

    Miriam Santiago is dumb. Really dumb.

    • Joe America says:

      Her cannon has indeed gotten looser of late. Hypertension maybe. It’s strange. She is absent from most activities, and then comes crashing through spouting off as if she were the only one whose voice mattered.

      Strange for a representative of the higher house, which is supposed to be esteemed.

      • sonny says:

        Right on the nose, Joe. If words describing her behavior must be used, I would refer to her “chauvinism of self.”

        • Joe America says:

          chauvinism: “an attitude that the members of your own sex are always better than those of the opposite sex. : the belief that your country, race, etc., is better than any other.”


          • That is Miriam Webster, not Miriam Santiago. In her dictionary chauvinism is:

            “an attitude that the sex you can offer is always better than the sex others can offer”

            • edgar lores says:

              If I may suggest a minor amendment in the pronoun: replace “you” with “she”.

              Then the definition will be totally consistent with Sonny’s conceit.

              • sonny says:

                The meaning I’m trying to convey is from this definition of chauvinism:

                (chauvinism = Prejudiced belief in the superiority of one’s own … kind)

  38. Leticia says:

    Wow! I applaud you, Joe America, for articulating so well what every decent and law-abiding Filipinos feel about the Binays and the shame they brought that has now made our beautiful country the laughing stock in the international community.

    • Joe America says:

      Thank you Leticia. I’m glad the article struck a chord. Enough of that it the right places, and maybe we can lose the shame and get on with the business of tossing crooks from the scene, and managing things forthrightly.

  39. Lhot says:

    An employee in a company is required to explain for simple violation of company policies such as tardiness and abseentism. So it is very disappointing that someone who is accused of accretion of government wealth is not willing to at least explain himself clearly. Binay, instead, keeps on showing his braggadocio face and says it is just politics. An ordinary employee like me is just shaking my head in dismay whenever I read news about Binay. By the way, among the 5 classes, I hate most the “The silent and compliant”. Plays politics as usual.

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks for the input, Lhot. Indeed, I think your view is consistent with that of many, many people. How can we toss the ordinary people in a crowded jail because someone makes a claim, withhold any decent kind of legal support or quick justice, and then allow a HUGE scoundrel to run amok slandering good people and jobbing the whole nation. Outrageous.

  40. D says:

    Hi Joe, joining them welcoming you back in the sweltering heat all around us.
    Great post as ever and I hope we could recruit more to fill the 4th and 5th group of Filipinos and give the country a chance to experience a different kind of politics and eventually leadership.
    Rallying #NoToBinayPolitics

  41. D says:

    Reblogged this on My Decade Long Travels and commented:
    Shame on you Filipinos who can’t read between the lines and see whose telling the truth and those blatantly lying.
    Read on and be informed (and hopefully enlightened).

  42. Jose Guevarra says:

    Not quite home here Joe, as I am back in the land of milk and honey. But it’s really good to se you back here on the net.

    And the Binay-bashing continues… Gosh, how I wish we can spread the word around in the vernacular so that the masses can truly understand why this is so shameful. Many of the folks I have talked to whenever I am home say that there is nothing especialy wrong with the Binay family since all Filipino politicians do dirty tricks themselves or have someone do it for them. Why should we expect the Binays to be any different? They just don’t get it that it only took the Binays less than three decades in Makati to be multibillionaires, given that they were poorer than the house mouse in 86. No one gets rich that quickly from being mayors of ONE CITY, at least not legally. Even the Marcoses had to rule the entire country and make a lot of wheeling and dealing with hundreds, if not thousands, of local politicians to be where they were in 86. Heck they even had to have others “disappear” to get their way. The Binays have yet to be rumored to have offed anyone (not that I am hoping they do, but you get the idea about just how much it takes to be that rich and that powerful that quickly).

    I am having a hard time even talking to my friends from the slums. They also get back at me by saying that at least they sacks of groceries from the Binays when hard times hit them. How do we counter that? Ugh, is this really what we have to live with now?

    • Joe America says:

      Hi, Jose. The land of milk would be California, the land of honey would be . . . er, California, as I tend to think in terms of Napa Valley wines. 🙂 Here is the land of earthquakes, as we had last night, popping off our electricity and driving my wife into a frenzy as she thought she might miss the final episode of “Forevermore”.

      I had a similar experience on the car ride home from our vacation, Tacloban to Biliran. The hired driver insisted that Arroyo was great and Aquino is a bum, and that view was as hard as cement. I think I might pose the problem here, in a separate blog, how to break through those deeply entrenched views, and the fact that simple little gifts strike the recipients favorably. It is THE single most important challenge for candidates running against Binay.

  43. Nicolas says:

    Because people like Binays’ thrive in the Slums that are rich in votes. They don’t want these non-tax paying people be educated. People who parasite to these Big, Corrupt Politicos who in turn suck BIG TIME from the people who pay taxes.

    • Joe America says:

      I think the trick for candidates opposed to Binay is to explain that to the laboring class and unemployed. Help them to understand that they are being used.

    • Jose Guevarra says:

      which brings us back to the main solution: EDUCATION. doesn’t have to be formal education, just ANY FORM of education if it’s directed towards the masses.

  44. Liberation Theologian says:

    “..The unethical media, journalism professionals who have sold their souls and personal pride to the devil; the Binay spokesliars who condemn good people and good values in favor of bad, the prominent people such as the Aquino sisters and Peping Cojuangco and Atty Harry Roque, who put their own weight of reputation behind the Binays.”

    You forgot one group of people. They Clergymen who, despite having the Highest criteria of Moral Fiber chose to corrupt it in favor of the Devil

  45. Dexter B says:

    Maganda, maliwanag, masarap isipin na sana makarating at maintindihan ng mga Pilipino itong mensahe mo. Sana maisulat mo sa wikang Tagalog ito para marami pa ang maabot at maliwanagan.

    Ako man ay gusto ring makasakay sa malaking alon ng pagbabago.

    • Joe America says:

      Ah, the gap between comprehension and speaking is too huge for me, personally. I wish other commenters would use Tagalog if it is the language that works best for them. I suspect we would double the amount of input and thinking.

      Anyone is welcome to translate a piece, as Juana Pilipinas has done in the past.

      In fact, thank you for reminding me that I ought to formally make clear that readers are invited to comment in the language that works best for them.

  46. Bong Valencia says:

    Filipinos are good writers.but words will NOT stop Binay. Deeds WILL,as in safeguarding ballot boxes on election day, install foreign observers during election, and counting of votes,and report/ punish vote buying.

  47. Fred Escobar says:

    Joe Am
    You just the nail hard on the head. I myself is in wonder why the present government cannot get rid of this plunderer, thief, liar, immoral wannabe. Nice blog JoeAm. Very True too.

  48. Fred Escobar says:

    Joe Am,
    Can you please find a way of getting the Binay family out of the Philippines for good? For sure if they are gone the country will be an excellent paradise to live in.

Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] The Binays and the shame of the Philippines Where o’ where is the ethical foundation of the nation? Who will step up for good values? […]

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