China’s stealth invasion of the Philippines

startoon philstar

[Photo credit: Philstar Opinion]

China is the muscular underachiever out to prove a point, behavior we would normally associate with a teen-ager, but China has been around awhile. Indeed, China displays symptoms of emotional duress born of centuries of playing second fiddle to smaller, stronger nations. Her leaders portray racial difference as racial superiority in order to get even, to compensate, to impel the Chinese to seek their rightful place as the dominant nation on earth. Her leaders, civilian and military, have historical chips on their shoulder, and they go around every day daring someone to flick them off.

Well, no one wants to provoke a bully, so we generally turn the other way, or talk amongst ourselves on the other side of the great wall that China has erected between herself and the rest of the forthright world. Some are inclined to flip the bully off.

It is odd to me that China chooses not to allow respect to come to her naturally, for her natural place is one that deserves it, for her rich history and cultural traditions, the intelligence and accomplishments of her studied peoples, her wide-ranging creative and cultural arts, and aggressive commercial prowess that  . . . in a world guided only loosely by rules on theft of secrets and product quality . . . dominates. Rather, China demands respect the way ancient kings and rulers did . . . the way it was done before the fields of sociology and psychology pointed out that there were better ways, the most important of which is found in the recognition that respect is earned naturally when it is granted generously.

China holds respect for no other nation, as far as I can tell. Not for America or the former British colonies, not for France or other European countries, not for ASEAN states, for sure, nor Middle Eastern and African nations. Perhaps she grants a begrudging respect to Russia, for Russia is a bully in-kind, a member of the clique.

If China is alone in the world, it is no wonder. It is hard for other countries to be friends with those they can’t trust. People who are always lecturing them about how to conduct their own personal affairs.

So China pushes out with power and influence and declarative statements issued to her captive press, brainwashing the locals, and to the international press, to instruct everyone else as to their proper place in relation to the Great Chinese Empire. And as a subset of this outward push, China is now working on a slow, calculated, steady invasion of the Philippines.

You don’t see it because you are not supposed to see it.

China’s physical occupancy of Philippine shoals is in fact just a magician’s sleight of hand. It gets you looking there while China does her real work elsewhere.

Unfortunately, I have no spies in Shanghai, although I know that dead pigs sometimes float in the river there, or in Beijing, where the air is deadly with smog, but I can see the leaves rustling, the tell-tale signs that China is on the move. So let me share a vision of what I think is going on:

  1. China is developing deep economic ties with the Philippines that can be used later for leverage. China can withstand economic pressure in ways that the Philippines cannot. “Sure, SM, come on over and invest in malls and condos in China. We’ll ‘catch you’ later.
  2. China is establishing  . . . buying, really . . . political ties. If it has not already been done, you can expect that money will change hands if Philippine President X demands it, in exchange for Chinese sovereignty over the occupied rocks. The President does not have to raid the Philippine treasury for riches, he can just negotiate a little dip into the Chinese treasury and his family will live like kings and queens forever. America will be booted out, China welcomed in.
  3. Chinese functionaries are working diligently to destabilize the Philippines, socially and politically. They may be meddling in the 2016 national election.

Let me elaborate on this last one, because the evidence is clear that China is “working” the Philippines. The Chinese are working the social dialogue in the Philippines, and working it in very sophisticated fashion. It used to be raw insults and one liners. Now it is expansive and intellectual. Here’s a reader’s comment that was inserted into the Inquirer discussion thread by a Chinese agent. It was deleted by the Inquirer’s editors along with several other remarks in that thread from the same reader. (Refer to: “China: We are the victims in dispute; won’t heed UN decision“)

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying’s Remarks on the Conclusion of the Hearing on Issues Relating to Jurisdiction and Admissibility by the South China Sea Arbitral Tribunal Established at the Request of the Philippines

Q: Recently, the Arbitral Tribunal for the Philippines’ South China Sea Arbitration has concluded the hearing on issues relating to jurisdiction and admissibility. What is China’s comment on that?

A: The Chinese Government has, on many occasions, expounded its position of neither accepting nor participating in the arbitral proceeding unilaterally initiated by the Philippines in disregard of China’s legitimate rights bestowed upon her by international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), and in breach of the agreement that has been repeatedly reaffirmed with China as well as the Philippines’ undertakings in the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC). This position is supported by sufficient legal evidences. And for more information, please refer to the Position Paper of the Government of the People’s Republic of China on the Matter of Jurisdiction in the South China Sea Arbitration Initiated by the Republic of the Philippines released last December.

The origin and crux of the disputes between China and the Philippines in the South China Sea lie in the territorial sovereignty disputes caused by the Philippines’ illegal occupation of some islands and reefs of China’s Nansha Islands since the 1970s, and the disputes concerning maritime rights and interests that arose thereafter. Being a victim of the South China Sea issue, China, bearing in mind the whole situation of regional peace and stability, however, has been exercising utmost restraint. China has always adhered to and has been committed to resolving, in accordance with international law and on the basis of respecting historical facts, relevant disputes relating to territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests with relevant states directly concerned through negotiation and consultation. This is China’s consistent practice, and also common practice of the international community.

China opposes any move by the Philippines to initiate and push forward the arbitral proceeding. On issues of territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests, China will never accept any imposed solution or unilaterally resorting to a third-party settlement. China urges the Philippines to return to the right approach of resolving relevant disputes through negotiation and consultation as soon as possible.

It is good that The Inquirer is now actively moderating discussion threads and picking out the foreign players who are there to push an anti-Philippine agenda.

You can catch these Chinese “intellectual trolls” working broadly across the Philippines. The objective is to put ideas into the minds of Filipinos, that Philippine claims are groundless, that America is not a friend, that Japan is not a friend, and that the Philippine government is not a friend. And, most horribly, you will even find depictions of Filipinos as a sub-par people and the Philippines as a sub-par nation, easily defeated by the superior Chinese.

The trolls . . . who function as propaganda agents . . . are on Facebook and blogs such as The Society of Honor. These open exchanges are perfect for dropping off messages that seat disruptive ideas. The messages are sophisticated and well thought-out. A lot of effort has gone into design of the arguments. And very capable advocates for China join the debate. Some are fluent in Filipino, although most work in English. Here is  an excerpt from one of The Society of Honor’s visits from our “good friend” Obed, who may be Filipino or working in the Philippines . . . or in Shanghai:


Do you know Joe why China never went in a deal with the Philippines in regard the islands.

Let me tell you:
The Chinese knew that the Pinoys will cheat on the deal! So the Chinese would rather take over! No costs, no contracts which the Pinoys would simply violate anyway.

Personally i think it would be good that China would take over the Philippines.
The local politicians would love the way that the Chinese deal with corrupt politicians and and officials. A quick trial is held. They are convicted. They are marched around a public parade ground for all to see, then shot. It’d be quite some clean out here.

Or we let them their Freedom who is also the freedom to live miserably and ingnorantly

This people here don’t want to develop, Its not like in China when Deng Xiao Ping gave them a longer leash and hungry as they were they immediately started doing something. The People here don’t want that.

They have already all freedom you need for success and also a lot of resources. They just decide to do nothing with them.

Have you noticed that in this worlds 3rd biggest exporter of Coconuts there are barely Coconut dishes? That Coconut milk here comes from Thailand and Malaysia, there is no Coconut Soap in this country also. Instead of actively adding value to a resource they have plenty of they choose the easy way out. Why ?

[You can read the entire dialogue with Obed in the discussion thread at Can we kindly lose this ‘minimum credible defense’ mentality?]

Here’s a more recent commentary, possibly originating out of Shanghai:


Out off topic but just to enlighten you on China exclusion zone:

It is based on Taiping island which is the only natural island in the chain to have freshwater and therefore categorized as “land”. this is important because only land can project EEZ… the reclaim islands lies within the EEZ of Taiping island which make what China is doing “legal” even if it is confrontation… what China is really doing, it is creating a shield around Taiping as it would be impossible to patrol the EEZ solely from Taiping. the EEZ does not change with the addition of these island, that is not the purpose of creating them… it is interesting to note that china had never claim 12nm for those island. those are actually what US claim China is claiming.

Instead the UNCLOS actually do address reclaim land, that is they are entitled just 1nm around them. Essentially what US is doing is it is trying to confuse the world, of course China will protest, but they will not shoot at US ship until US ship enter what UNCLOS establish as outside the legal limit of freedom of navigation.

[You can read the entire dialogue with Lake in the discussion thread at The American US$18 trillion debt – a Rube Goldberg machine]

A good number of sophisticated Chinese propaganda specialists have been blocked from the discussion threads here at The Society of Honor. Some of the trolls may use duplicate names, so it is difficult to tell exactly how many people are actually working the blog.

You may think, “oh, no big deal”, but what if this is just the tip of the iceberg? What if China has “preferred candidates”? Can you identify the Chinese propaganda functionaries from the other supporters? Who are they likely to back? I’d imagine they would back those candidates who have expressed a willingness to depart from the Aquino initiative (apply international law) to negotiate bilaterally with China: Candidates Binay, Poe, Duterte, Estrada and Marcos have all indicated a willingness to cozy up to China. And Candidate Santiago dearly wants the US out of the Philippines.

Furthermore, what if China is buying journalists and buying politicians WHO ARE NOW IN OFFICE?

No big deal?

If you think I am making this stuff up, read this interview with a Chinese propaganda specialist: “China’s Paid Trolls: Meet the 50 Cent Party“. This army does not carry rifles, it carries keyboards. Here’s an excerpt from the article that shows how carefully the propaganda program is crafted:

The netizens are used to seeing unskilled comments that simply say the government is great or so and so is a traitor. They know what is behind it at a glance. The principle I observe is: don’t directly praise the government or criticise negative news. Moreover, the tone of speech, identity and stance of speech must look as if it’s an unsuspecting member of public; only then can it resonate with netizens. To sum up, you want to guide netizens obliquely and let them change their focus without realising it.

No big deal?

The Philippines is but one country “in play”. Very likely China is working across Southeast Asia.

Step 1 of any action plan to ward off undue Chinese influence in Philippine affairs is awareness. That’s what I’m doing here. Step 2 might be to develop a stronger sense of patriotism across the nation, with little tolerance for “pro-Chinese” arguments. Step 3 might be to develop intense cyber security and investigation capabilities. Step 4 and beyond . . . I leave to the National Government and defense specialists.

But . . . if you do think it is “No Big Deal”, kindly read this article, which provides a stark picture of Southeast Asia as a region waiting for a Chinese shoe to drop. I’ve pulled a couple of excerpts from the article to end the blog properly. As a “wake-up call”.

A Very Dangerous Time to Fight With China

For China’s Communist Party, economic growth is existentially critical. Since the exposure of communism as a bankrupt political philosophy, the party has rebuilt its legitimacy on the twin pillars of economic prosperity and kind of a blunt nationalism. . . .

The great fear is not so much that China will invade its neighbors or sink our carriers, but that it will become powerful enough to draw its neighbors into joining an unopposable coalition. As the preeminent state in Asia, China could refashion the regional order to suit itself, and then with that coalition successfully challenge the global American order and its rules.

It is wise that the Philippines choose her friends well, I think.

212 Responses to “China’s stealth invasion of the Philippines”
  1. NHerrera says:

    Congratulations Joe. Well-supported, especially since your blog has experienced the trolling of these Chinese Agents. Your enumerated visions 1, 2, 3 seem real to me. And scary!

    • NHerrera says:

      The above aside, the current associated question in the case of this stealth invasion not only of the Philippines but other countries who have claims which clash with China is: Is it really historical claim that drives or motivates this stealthy behavior — historical claim debunked with numerous documents of the Philippine Panel in the Hague — or the socio-economic-political driven motivation, including the desire to corner the large fossil and marine resources of the area?

      I know this is partly discussed in your link, “A Very Dangerous Time to Fight With China” but are there other variations of the idea? Irineo? Chempo?

      • This article by me is here and in my blog: – it is a mixture of old mindsets, revanchism and economic ambitions…

        it is a reincarnation of Japan’s ambitions to a Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere… to lead Asia against “Western incursions” under its own control.

        It is also the old idea of which never has left the Chinese mindset, that of China = “All Under Heaven”.

        Five Forces are competing and cooperating in todays world: USA, EU, Russia, Islam and China. China has the least universalist mindset of all five.

        In fact China today is de facto the US idea of free markets without freedom and democracy, without respect for any other countries at all – just blind greed and dominance.

    • Joe America says:

      It is scary.

      We’ve had two troll comments to the thread here, but they were nonsense rather than discussion. If there is discussion, I’ll likely publish it.

      • I have the suspicion that the Makati publication Business Mirror is pro-Chinese… Recent articles comparing TPP and the Chinese alternative, pro-Duterte stuff, articles subtly against the arbitration proceedings are indications… we have to be highly vigilant.

  2. edgar lores says:

    I find China’s behavior to be strange… bipolar.

    At one pole, it is insensitive to criticism as when it conducts cyber hacking or when it proceeds to build infrastructures over the rocks in the West Philippine Sea.

    At the other pole, it is very sensitive to criticism when when it comes to other countries hosting the Dalai Lama or, recently, denying Miss World Canada a visa to compete in the Miss World 2015 competition that is being held in Sanya, Hainan Island. Miss Canada, Anastasia Lin, was born in China and is an adherent of Falun Gong.

    Both behaviors can be seen as the use of force to save face. Aggression in the first instance, and suppression of dissent in the second instance.

    What is apparent is the country’s general fear of ideas and the need to filter them through censorship. Google is almost totally blocked in China. Blocked is FaceBook. And Twitter. And Instagram. And even Slideshare.

    • “Blocked is FaceBook.” Yes, Master Yoda.

      China, very strange, it is.

      The more modern social media strategy is that of Russia.

      They have their own FB clone called VKontakte

      • VKontakte is used very much in Europe as well – by Russian immigrants.

        Many Russians still have Borg implants, I mean residues of old Russian nationalist, old Soviet plus new Putin propaganda, won’t touch Amerikanski Facebook with a ten foot pole.

    • Joe America says:

      Excellent points. Bipolar and insecure. The UN should set up a department of psychiatry.

    • Madlanglupa says:

      ” Google is almost totally blocked in China. Blocked is FaceBook. And Twitter. And Instagram. And even Slideshare.”

      Except maybe only the most elite of keyboard warriors and their controllers can have access to the sites mentioned; extremely loyal, patriotic and ideologically hardened, sent to shape or misshape society through social networking. I’m sure right now they’re influencing elections as well through Facebook, to make their favorite candidate a viable winner by steering the sheeple to their favor.

  3. Angel says:

    I can’t help but compare this to how the Duterte supporters are functioning right now in social media. Also notable because Duterte was the one who said “we’re better off being friends with China”.

    When killing, womanizing, and badmouthing the Pope gets defended or even lauded, my instincts tell me we’re headed to somewhere bad. All my internal alarm systems are sounding. It is scaring me and I don’t know how to fight against it.

    • Duterte’s idea of weekly executions sounds very much like China. His approach is Maoist – be nice and talk to those who cooperate and ruthless towards those who refuse. His supporters often behave like Red Guards – or Cultural Revolutionaries – of Mao Zedong.

    • Joe America says:

      All the Presidential candidates but Roxas would change the current approach which is firm adherence to law. They would go political and negotiate. That is my deduction for Santiago based on that she dearly wants the US out, but has proposed no defense plan.

  4. Five Forces compete in today’s world:

    The USA: standing for freedom and democracy, and free trade. Spiritual descendants of the Germanic tribes and the Vikings of Europe, and European Protestantism.

    The EU: standing for freedom and democracy, and sustainable and inclusive progress. Spiritual descendants of the Roman Empire, the Holy Roman Empire, and French ideas.

    The Russians: standing for order and strongly anti-Islamic. Spiritual descendants of the Byzantine Empire, the Tsars who claimed to succeed it, the Orthodox Church, and Leninist ideas.

    Islam: stands for universal brotherhood (men only) under the Sharia. Spiritual descendants of the old Oriental civilizations, and Islam that resolved post-Roman chaos in that area.

    China: stands for Tianxia, all Under Heaven, under a worldwide Chinese commercial Empire. Pure unfettered greed and racist dominance. The most dangerous of all Five Forces.


    The EU and the USA are close for all their differences. Together they may manage to find a bridge to more modern Russian, and to liberal Muslims. But to the Chinese – very difficult.

    The solution may be an emerging Sixth Force: Southeast Asia or Nusantara.


    Nusantara can build bridges to (and contain) both Islam and China. The Overseas Chinese within Nusantara, who mostly do not like the way China is now, may be helpful in this. China hopes to make them a Fifth Column in Southeast Asia, but may not succeed in this calculation.

    • NHerrera says:

      I am trying to understand these five-forces (with a likely sixth — Nusantara) framework operating in the world. Certainly it is not that of trade because each one of the five or six trades with the others to a greater or less extent. The objective then may be dominance of influence in world affairs. But for the future, such trade may and can be used to leverage such dominance game.

      Your notes says there is considerable overlap in US-EU interests (say level 80) compared to US-EU and Russia, although there may be some (of the level of say 20-30 max). China and Islam have practically no overlap between them and with US-EU and Russia (level of interest overlap amongst them say less than 10 ). I have used the numbers to get a flavor of these interests relationship for future world affairs dominance to see how we as part of ASEAN or Nusantara fits into the picture.

      It seems to me then that China cannot allow ASEAN or Nusantara to align its interest with US-EU and that may explain its “stealthy invasion” of the Philippines and the SCS, the acquisition of its marine and fossil resources only a PART of the strategy — a NECESSARY but not SUFFICENT long-term objective. Does that make sense?

      • It makes a lot of sense, and the Philippines is the keystone of everything, like it was for the Spanish in establishing a foothold in Asia and likewise for the Americans.

        For ASEAN it is either the region achieves some control over its own destiny like the EU has by now, or becomes the site of a New Cold War – between the USA and China – the recent APEC summit and the ASEAN summit that followed have been crucial moments.

        • NHerrera says:

          Thanks. Thanks, too, for that globe picture putting the highlighted Philippines at the Center — a pearl of the seas.

          • Welcome… the EU alignment is helping right now… Aquino is on his final lap…


            MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines and Italy raised the possibility of increasing trade and investment, with Manila becoming a possible manufacturing base for export to the European Union (EU) under the Generalized Scheme of Preferences (GSP).

            This was discussed during the meeting between Philippine President Benigno Aquino III and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi in Rome on Wednesday, December 2.

            The GSP is a 10-year trade scheme which grants Philippine exporters zero tariff in the shipping of at least 6,274 products to the EU.

        • Vicara says:

          The Philippines speaks truth to power at the Hague, through Secretary del Rosario:

          • Secretary Del Rosario is very impressive… a true diplomat and gentleman.

            A refreshing change from the many Kenkoys who often represented the country abroad.

            • Joe America says:

              Agree. He is one of the people of the cabinet . . . most are, I think . . . who are there to do public service, for the Philippines. He already made his mark in business. What he is doing now is an elegant gift.

              • Del Rosario is one who by his dignified bearing can hold his own in Washington, Brussels and The Hague… one who gives face to the Philippines as a respectable partner abroad.

                My Berlin visit also gave me quite positive feedback on Secretary De Lima from the inside track of Berlin-Mitte – while the same crowd pretty much privately facepalms itself about Binay, for example… I wonder what all the EU NGO reps are now saying in their internal reports to their home offices regarding the Philippine election… I am quite sure they are all quietly observing, just like all diplomatic missions most certainly are, no leaks on that yet.

                What most certainly worries many EU nations is the possibility of a government that will cancel deals already made whimsically or wanting more bribes, like Arroyo did with NAIA3 – OK Fraport made the mistake of paying Erap, a lesson learned in staying clean always.

                The best deal for the Philippines (and its businessmen) long-term is stability and reliability, not the reputation of a den of thieves who sell to the highest bidder like before… the fact that EU businesses are heavily engaged right now is proof of something being done right.

                Unlike Chinese engagement, EU engagement comes with no strings attached except that deals are kept. Private feedback I have received from EU BPO folks engaged in Makati is that Filipinos are preferred partners, because their mentality is closest to that of the West. The mindset of Duterte winning will cause many to go to Indonesia instead, there one can have something similar, only more predictable and definitely not beholden to the Chinese.

        • The EU has been nudging the ASEAN since the 1980s… The AEMM or ASEAN-EC Ministerial Meetings took place yearly then, I think they are still being continued…

          The USA is well-advised to build strong regional partners for a stable global order… more modern US thinking is on its way to the Age of Partnerships, away from the Age of Empires, while China pretends to the former while practicing the latter. Strong regional groupings also give regions better bargaining power in case the USA goes back to older ways post-Obama… Republican Presidents always have been more imperialistic (McKinley, Reagan, Bush) while Democrats go for partnership (Wilson, Kennedy, Obama).

          Now if ASEAN does NOT become a Sixth Force, India is the Seventh Force coming around the corner, and Southeast Asia will become an object in a tug-of-war between India and China… the USA is far away and overextended, so it makes sense to have them as allies. Just like the EU has the USA as an ally to protect against Islam and Russia. The Eighth Force – Latin America – will focus on sustainability and self-sufficiency, Cuba and Venezuela are examples, just like their Native American spiritual or real ancestors. Poor Africa will take time to become a Ninth Force, if ever, they have too many big problems.

          • Finally the COP in Paris shows that the big issue now is finally global survival.

            The UN alone will not guarantee that. Strong regional groupings to offset the dominance of superpowers are essential for balance, to keep them from destroying the planet.

            Now one superpower, inspite of mistakes, has acted as the de facto global sheriff at times. The goal is to make the world less of a Wild West in the future. Aquino going to court in the Hague is a step in that direction, building partnerships is a step toward that as well.

          • Joe America says:

            1. US
            2. China
            3. EU
            4. Russia
            5. Japan
            6. ASEAN
            7. India
            8. Latin America
            9. Africa

            Is that it? Soon, in economic terms, 2 becomes 1.

    • “China hopes to make them a Fifth Column in Southeast Asia, but may not succeed in this calculation.”

      It all comes down to being able to spread your vision. Appealing to the Chinese’ better nature, is possible. The trick is, who do they respect? They think all Americans are either dumb surfers or dumb cowboys.

  5. Micha says:

    It’s the Chinese Communist Politburo that sets/dictates international and national policies. It has a well-organized propaganda and espionage bureau. Any dissent or protest from local Chinese population is summarily repressed.

    The reigning Miss World Canada. Anastasia Lin, is blocked from entering China because she had the temerity to speak about China’s human rights abuses.

    This is not a country I’d like to see dominate the rest of the world.

  6. josephivo says:

    And it is not only annexing the Philippines. So many things are going on. How far will they participate as world citizens, what can they do alone? How much world recognition of their achievements do they expect?

    Chinese designer babies. “In April 2015, scientists from China published a paper in the journal Protein & Cell reporting results of an attempt to alter the DNA of non-viable human embryos using CRISPR to correct a mutation that causes beta thalassemia, a lethal heritable disorder.” Wikipedia

  7. Russef says:

    “Some of the trolls may use duplicate names, so it is difficult to tell exactly how many people are actually working the blog”

    Today, our 100 men strong team has nothing to do as there is no stealth invasion on your piece of crap. We feel so pity for you.

    We are now confident that you aren’t the defined professor.

  8. Obed: “Have you noticed that in this worlds 3rd biggest exporter of Coconuts there are barely Coconut dishes? That Coconut milk here comes from Thailand and Malaysia, there is no Coconut Soap in this country also. Instead of actively adding value to a resource they have plenty of they choose the easy way out. Why ?”

    I always figured the Philippines as a whole was just sick and tired of coconuts, but I’m sure now that people over here are all going crazy over coconut juice (and pomegranate), that’s changed since, no? But I do remember seeing perfectly good coconuts go unharvested in Mindanao, while in the cities coconut sellers on their large flat carts end their days with many still left over (sleeping on their carts). Has it changed, are people there more appreciative of coconuts, in light of the demand over here——- I noticed most of these “fresh” coconut drinks come from Brazil, while the canned, sweetened ones come from Thailand & Malaysia.

    So, in a round about way, I think Obed had a great point, about appreciating your local resources, and appreciating your land.

    “Her leaders, civilian and military, have historical chips on their shoulder, and they go around every day daring someone to flick them off.”


    There’s a bunch of them here in Socal now. But looking at the Chinese young abroad (a bunch here as students and businessmen), I’m seeing not so much a chip but just absolute cluelessness. Either from being products of the 1 child policy, or for having so much money while young, or both—– many here drive all kinds of fancy cars and in the Roland Heights area, they are surpassing Armenians in driving behaviour

    becoming quite a nuisance.

    So that ‘autism’ that Luttwak described in his book, , is a legitimate actual description of the Chinese youth abroad. If their powerful parents had chips on their shoulders, these youngsters are simply clueless— with money, which is a danger in and of itself. Multiply that by a bunch, and that ‘s the future of a nation on the rise. No depth of character.

    They move about in homogenous (all Chinese) groups, but I think if there was a concerted effort to re-educate these kids—– unlike the Salafis— IMHO, the Chinese youth abroad (in EU too) can be won over. International student advisors in schools and local chambers of commerce (especially by Chinese-Americans, who are mostly from Taiwan) should be tasked to reach out to them.

    My hope rests on the U.S. being able to win these kids over. They already got the capitalism thing down and they know how to enjoy stuff, with no compunction (unlike the rich Saudi/Gulf state youth that come here, who get torn between two value systems), so it’s just a matter of mentorship.

    It’s school advisors and other business mentors over here that have access and can provide this mentorship, I think in the Philippines it’ll be Filipino English teachers who’ll have access and the ability to share some character building exercises— off the top of my head, Amy Tan books, OR just simply stories from the Philippines.

    PNoy can gather up all the English teachers to the Chinese over there (online or in-person) and task ’em with this PR/character building mission— which is to win-over the Chinese. Appeal to their better nature— I’m sure that’s a Chinese proverb, not just Dale Carnegie’s.

    • sonny says:

      “I always figured the Philippines as a whole was just sick and tired of coconuts …”

      LC, Irineo and Wilfredo will surely take umbrage on this comment. The basic staple of food in the Bicol Region is coconut-based and defined. Next time visit southern Tagalog and Bikolandia and enjoy LAING or BICOL EXPRESS and other coconut goodies.

      “… but I’m sure now that people over here are all going crazy over coconut juice (and pomegranate), that’s changed since, no? …”

      Procter & Gamble and Peter Paul candies can definitely have something to say about this. Next time you read labels of beauty products watch for Lauric Acid, the skin-friendliest oil in the cosmetic neighborhood, and coconut oils in the nutrition portions. We all have Madison Avenue to thank for interdicting coconut oil as food, junking the most nutritious food-oil as part of the bad guys, the saturated fatty acids. Add the pharmaceutical companies that ostracized the coconut in the fight to reduce the bacterial load of HIV patients, early on.

      Maybe we have the palm oil demand to thank for sparing us the current run on coconut products in favor of Indonesia, Thailand, and Mexico so Filipinos can enjoy the best tasting coconuts in the world at 15 pesos/fruit giveaway. ($0.13) 🙂

      • Vicara says:

        In the early 1990s, the Philippines, through one company alone, had cornered 25 percent of the world market for dessicated coconut. That company belonged to Juan Ponce Enrile.

        OK, now that I’ve gotten that little factoid off my chest: Obed clearly has not been making the tourist rounds, because every pasalubong stall and DTI trade show and weekend market is almost swimming in virgin coconut oil products, from soap to salad dressing. Coconut oil is still the cheapest oil available in palengke.

        There’s no lack of coconut processing technology, but assembly/export is still lacking in economies of scale. Which could be said of a whole lot of other Philippine industries.

        • sonny says:

          I pray the Philippines unleash the DOST for our own good! It is time!

          • I was telling a classmate who was consulting in the DOST satellite project how one of the ideas here is so brilliant. The funneling of Department of National Defense to the DOST. That is when he remarked about how slow things are when working for the government.

      • Waray-waray says:

        Just featured in CNN this December, the billion PHP industry that is the Phil Coconut industry. It’s a very encouraging feature. Am wondering the status of the coconut levy, it would surely help the coconut farmers and invigorate this industry. It would be interesting to ask Chiz (the quezo de bola) what is his stand about the coconut levy – and Poe. You know his patron Danding and Poe’s known supporter San Miguel.

  9. Niteowl says:

    Thanks Joe ! I hope the people can catch on the dangers lurking behind the scene of political frenzy. A trusted friend has warned me some two or three years ago, that a timetable of five to ten years – China will take over the entire Philippines and will declare it their Annex island nation ! Silent waters really run deep, as China begun a silent invasion in the mindset of Filipinos, into their attitudes, culture and economics. No military might is necessary to win its invasion for it has already planted its roots surgically and genetically ! My friend even elaborated that each and every infrastructure, investments, corporation, banking, entertainment, pharmaceutical, electronics, industry, transportation, etc are financed by China if not owned as major stock holders with dummy entities. While the population are so engrossed with political power games since day one, so is China creeping and wiggling in, undetected and ‘submerged’ in the culture like those reclaimed islands ….

    • Joe America says:

      Well said, Niteowl. You characterize the power of the influence well.

    • BFD says:

      Then if that is the case, we should not allow our lawmakers to tinker with the 60/40 ownership of business and real estate in our country that effectively limits foreigner from owning our local businesses.

      If I remember correctly, some of our political leaders are espousing to allow “foreign” (read Chinese) investments to own local businesses by enacting laws to “speed up” the local economy, which to me is like a “silent invasion” of the Philippine economy.

      • karl garcia says:

        No need for 60-40.

      • Waray-waray says:

        That is my stand as well BFD and that has been my concern since the 60/40 ownership was thought about. Because if that happens, even ordinary people would find it hard to buy a house, in their own country. When sub prime happened in 2008, the effect only hit HKG for a few months then property prices went up the hill again. It’s the mainland Chinese who snapped HKG properties left and right. And it’s not only in HKG but in the UK, Canada, Australia, US anywhere they can put their money on.

        And that’s only for housing. Factor in vast agricultural lands big Chinese companies would be willing to buy in the Philippines. It’s happening in Africa. To the Chinese, gold is might. They do not need their military to invade us.

        • Now, Waray-waray, why does this comment of yours remind me of the Chongs of Comembo property in Makati c/o Binay, the Tius of Rosario Hacienda in Batangas c/o Binay, the BSP property in Makati of which the majority shareholder is Roberto Ongpin c/o Binay again? The one in Rosario Batangas is rumored to be under land reform, with the Beneficiaries enticed to sold their hectares of land the, why did the DENR? allow this?

          How much money of these Chinese does Binay need, his words, not mine.

          The enlisted military were not able to avail of the 300 sqm lot in Comembo because the DENR? allegedly connived with Binay to favor the Chongs; the farmers are supposed to till their land for a number of years that’s why no title can be prepared for Tiu, and our scouts lost a chance to be majority owners of a prime commercial property in CBD Makati worth billions.

          With more of Binay-like politicians, why indeed would China need their military to invade us? Would it be possible that these Fil-Chinese billionaires are investing heavily in mainland China….capital flight in Binondo central bank comes to mind. I hope this musings of mine are totally wrong.

          Manchurian candidate, anyone? Duterte, Binay, Poe, Marcos..all are in favor of bilateral negotiation with China although her ambassador is saying that before such negotiations can take place, we must acknowledge that they own practically the whole of the West Philippine Seas..and Santiago is so against US presence in the Philippines.

          The Chinese (not sure if they are from the mainland) are gobbling up prime condo units in Manila and suburbs…Most warehouse units in Binondo are way out of the ordinary Filipinos’ budget schemes, one unit costs an average 50 million.


    Why not all aid is equal. The Chinese policy of not requiring much politically for its aid is having violent effects in African governments.

    • Joe America says:

      China has a wee small conscience, I think. The collective spirit of its military leaders is conquest and acquisition. People have been mistaken all these years by calling the US the “Great Imperialist”. Indeed, a better term would be “the Great Defender”, as Filipinos are coming to understand.

      • I am posting this link about uruguay’s move to 94% renewables because we need to ensure a couple of things when shipping is restricted by the chinese. Enough energy and enough food.
        For energy we can look at uruguay:

        For food we can look towards cuba. I believe @Karl has a link for that.

        • Joe America says:

          Thanks. A very worthwhile model.

        • gian,

          Here’s another way the Philippines can emulate Uruguay,

          After Years in Solitary, an Austere Life as Uruguay’s President

          His net worth upon taking office in 2010 amounted to about $1,800 — the value of the 1987 Volkswagen Beetle parked in his garage. He never wears a tie and donates about 90 percent of his salary, largely to a program for expanding housing for the poor.”

          • There is a book to be written on how someone like him got elected. We can only wish that the Philippine political system be evolved enough to elect someone as austere as him.

            • The fact that the Philippine election is being compared to Game of Thrones shows the REAL stage of political development the country still is in – pseudo-royal dynasties:

              Now GOT is partly inspired by English history, especially the Wars of the Roses (York vs. Lancaster – Lannister in GOT is an obvious reference), but also the Saxon Kingdoms, the Danes, and the Tudors with the Catholic-Protestant conflict and the Scottish Kings…

              There was a Duterte-like figure who ruled England as a dictator, Lord Oliver Cromwell – his reign was very strict and included prohibitions on dancing and wastefulness, Charles II (a party king with long black hair) came back after people were fed up, then the “Glorious Revolution” where the people drove out James II (an asshole) and installed William and Mary as their rules… after that it was Parliament that ruled, more than the kings… John Locke was a fan of William and Mary, Jefferson read Locke and was inspired by his ideas.

              The moment Filipinos stop relying on idols to save them – Noynoy was seen as Aragorn by Conrado de Quiros, some Duterte supporters see him as Frodo – they might finally save themselves. One place to start is by electing the right kind of Congressmen.

              A President can be as good as gold, if the Congress does not do its work properly – which is the case as of now – the changes and laws that he or she needs will not be passed. People overestimate what one person can do. Another thing is to elect the right local officials, because a lot of bullshit when it happens happens at LGU level. If dynasties don’t provide the right candidates, why not organize own groupings and field own people? Why can’t a local doctor or businessman do the job, maybe even better than an ersatz datu?

    • Praset says:

      China is moving up the value chain of manufacturing, so some lower end products are being moved oversea. This would help China reduce carbon emission and pollution due to manufacturing products for world consumption. It is s sure win for China.

      Here is another wonderful thing China do to help Africa accelerate her modernization. It’s a win win situation as China can ship off excess capacities there and products make will be sold as Made In Africa, financed by China. There is no Chinese characteristic, no nothing, just dollar signs. Everybody happy!

      Note from JoeAm; flagged by spam protection system as probable troll.

    • Waray-waray says:

      Robert Mugabe’s daughter studied in Hong Kong around in the mid 2000’s. Only in HK because they were banned in Europe and Americas. The mother Grace was once followed by a paparazzi and pity the guy he got a real beating from her. Know what she used to beat the guy? She gave him the fisticuffs – with her big big diamond laden rings on her fingers! Imagine what more she can do in Zimbamwe.

  11. karl garcia says:

    Who is/are the Manchurian candidate(s).?

    • NHerrera says:

      Effectively all except one.

      • Why can Ro-Ro never be pro-Chinese? First of all, they are not.

        Second, the Chinese cannot pronounce Roxas-Robredo properly – Loxas-Lobledo. 🙂

        • Singaporean tries to teach a Mainland Chinese democracy…

          Chempo asks Xi Jinping: when did you have your last election?

          Xi Jinping answers: just befole bleakfast.

          • The first, last and only line of Filipino defense is humor. If the Chinese come to invade, let us send Senator Sotto, Lola Nidora, Karl Garcia and Bert to annoy them with corniness. Why exactly four? Because the Chinese fear that number. It means death.

            One small aside… my sister once met an African wearing a shirt with his name: M’Baho – on the basketball court. She grinned widely, he said in a deep African voice “you are a Filipina for sure!” sounding and looking annoyed. She answered: “how do you know?”.

            Mr. M’Baho answered in a deep African bass “because you Filipinos are ALWAYS laughing at my name!”

  12. karl garcia says:

    Philex rep denies Trillanes claim that Del Rosario favored MVP in West PHL Sea issue – See more at:


    Enrile accuses Trillanes of siding with China.
    Trillanes claims that he backchanelling for PNoy.
    Trillanes accuses DFA sec del Rosario as MVP’s man

  13. karl garcia says:

    China bought 5 percent of Ukraine.

    They bought land in Canada,US,Africa.It is world domination.

      • Vicara says:

        The advantage Africa and Canada have is their geographic distance from China. We, on the other hand, are supposedly already squatting on its inland sea. So as the world’s resources diminish due to climate change, overpopulation and the destabilization caused by earlier conflicts over resources in other parts of the world, expect large swathes of their population moving here
        to displace ours. They’ll do it first by buying up–as they are already doing–local companies and real estate. And when resistance arises, as it inevitably will, they’ll apply pressure. And then they’ll apply force.

        • karl garcia says:

          We already have the top ten taipans.
          The chinese took advantage of the biofuel offerings,since the food vs fuel had a stalemate, they already hurt our food sector by flooding us with their agri products.On electronics,we export our electronic scrap to them and they process the raw materials back to us.For palm oil,they have Makaysia to do the dirty work for them.They also have gaming industry through their casinos.And in Politics,they have their Manchurian candidates.

        • very correct, which is why the special relationship Germany has with China is not dangerous to Germany, just like Drilon and others deal with Russia’s Medvedev…

 – the relationship of Germany with Russia is much more tense because they are near. Russia’s Manchurian candidate was Gerd Schröder who approved a deal selling Ruhrgas to Gazprom, only to join Gazprom after his term as German Chancellor – Merkel as an East German and former Communist Youth functionary knows the mindset and is not as naive and definitely not for sale to anyone, not even Chinese. Complex, dangerous world…

  14. karl garcia says:

    We are unknowingly or knowingly helipng China’s reclamation by destroying our mountains and quarry the rocks for China.

    • sonny says:

      Nephew, you got it right. Bahay ay bahay, wala tayong disposable ranges or tracts. Conservation and security should be our duty.

  15. Bing Garcia says:

    Does anybody know what happened to the frozen accounts of Binay? Thanks.

  16. karl garcia says:

    Probable troll lake opened up a barage of queries about Belgium and the article above tries to reveal the mystery Belgian buyer of US treasuries.

  17. karl garcia says:

    We can run to India.

    The link above is a comparison of military fire power of India and China.
    Indi can help our Navy,they already have a presence in our BPO sector,pharnaceuticals,microcredits thru 5-6 .

    • India has already called the South China Sea the West Philippine Sea.

      China and India have a conflict in the Himalayas which was a shooting war.

      India has already helped Vietnam in the island conflict. India is almost as nasty and arrogant to their direct neighbors as China is to theirs, but in this situation they are allies. China helping Sri Lanka is also a part of this equation – a major regional power conflict.

  18. karl garcia says:

    I hope you had an extensive meeting with Mar’s communication team and told them about some of our concerns.

    • Joe America says:

      Caibiran is on the other side of the island, a very isolated and small community. The major municipality of Naval, from what I understand, is run by a straight and proper mayor. That said, I was dismayed to see Naval on the Sister Cities list. It was about the last of the municipalities here to sign on. I think they will change the name to Binay Province in 2016. It was good of Mr. Roxas to visit, and nice to see the banners across the streets. But he is in unfriendly territory, I fear.

      • Sup says:

        Maybe you could run for mayor?

        I still think you have the right to talk/join politics in the Philippines..
        You pay tax here? Vat when you fill up your car with gasoline, vat when you shop…
        If you have only one stock in a company you are entitled to ventilate your opinion and visit the stockholders meeting..
        If you buy a chicken meal in Jollibee and the meat is not coocked you have also the right to send it back to the kitchen….

        Example….., last election a barangay captain did buy votes for 300 each…result…3 years no service cleaning the grass, cleaning the canal…must first get his pera back..
        If you live in that barangay as a foreigner and coming elections that captain does his speech don’t you think you have the right to climb the stage, grab the microphone and tell the public that you can not get his 300 because no voting right you still have the right to the cleaning service?

        The money from the barangay does come from national what you pay also, maybe even more than most of your neighbours..

        For me…i think you should go to the Supreme Court and ask for changing the election law…:-)

        Ps, i wish i could type as fast as Irineo or Parekoy…:-)

        • Joe America says:

          Hahaha, keep practicing. The restriction is from Immigration which issued a warning last election that foreigners are not to interfere in any way in elections. Of course, Immigration is the same unit that warned foreign APEC protesters that they would be deported, but nothing was done. It would be an interesting court case, wouldn’t it? The blog has become so ingrained in the Philippine dialogue that it is hard to say it is foreign meddling when it gives Filipinos around the world a platform for expression. Cut Joe off and you cut off one of the best dialogues in the Philippines. Still, I recognize that I have an influence that, for me personally, ought not be deployed during the campaign period to supplant the rights of Filipino citizens to chart their own destiny. Besides, by this point, I am saying the same thing over and over again. The old blogs stand here as reference articles for those so interested. If Filipinos can’t figure this election out right, there is little I can do. They are incorrigibly obtuse. And, of course, if a Filipino citizen asked for my opinion, I would be remiss to withhold it.

        • In the EU, all EU citizens can run for local office and can vote for local politicians anywhere. For local office there is a residency requirement, of course…

          It all did lead to some strange things happening… Greek municipal council candidates were found guilty of trying to buy votes in Dachau… it’s a while ago I forgot the details.

          A local politician and landowner in the Bavarian countryside was caught using Romanian seasonal agricultural workers as flying voters… to get elected for mayor…

  19. NHerrera says:


    Dr. Jonald P. Fenecios, Chair of the Ateneo de Davao University Mathematics Department has an interesting take on the decision to disqualify or not Grace Llamanzares and its associated benefit-risk. I am paraphrasing him below.

    Case 1. GL is in fact a NBFC
    Then the Decision to pronounce her as NBFC is correct.

    Case 2. GL is in fact NOT a NBFC
    Then the Decision to pronounce her as NOT a NBFC is correct.

    However, since the parentage of GL is not known one cannot say whether she is a NBFC or NOT.

    There will then be two errors that can arise:

    Case 3. Decide to pronounce GL as NOT a NBFC when in fact, as may be borne out much later, she is a NBFC

    Case 4. Decide to pronounce GL as a NBFC when in fact, as may be borne out much later, she is NOT a NBFC — and here let me editorialize for emphasis, that she is borne out of a Chinese tourists-friends.

    Then Dr. Fenecios concludes that the risk in Decision 3 is to an individual (I may correct that because the Constitution mandates the Decision regarding a foundling; so it is really just following the Constitution’s mandate.)

    Dr. Fenecios moves on to Decision 4, where he says the risk is bigger, especially if we put in my scenario example. (Joe, this is my justification for putting this post in the current blog — because it extends your concept of Chinese Invasion. Hahaha.)

    My scenario example aside, Dr. Fenecios makes a lot of sense. His conclusion is — Decision 3 is the right decision under the circumstance.

    The link:

    • BFD says:

      @NHerrera, I think Justice Carpio already opined that if the SC finds her not NBFC now, but at a later date she got a DNA result that proves she is NBFC, then she has the option to go through the process to reverse the earlier adverse ruling of the SC.

      • NHerrera says:

        Thanks for bringing that up.

        • I need to read the Comelec decision again. Later.

          In the meantime, If ever a biological parent surfaces that would perfectly match Poe’s DNA, then she was qualified to avail of the dual citizenship law. Will that solve her residency issue, if my memory serves me right, they allowed a hypothetical “granting, or supposing” that she is a NBFC qualified to have dual citizenship, but it will only add 4 months to her 9 years and six months, still 2 months short of the magic 10 years. But how about that estoppel doctrine…she herself filled out 6 years and 6 months residency in her senatorial CoC. Why didn’t Escudero think of rectifying that SCoC when Poe’s numbers in the surveys began showing high ratings…But how about another “honest mistake”‘ , that of putting FPJ and Susan as her biological parents in her documents and not a foundling to avail of the dual citizenship, didnt think of correcting that earlier (since she claims that she is the foundlings’ champion because she is a foundling herself) to show good faith, manana habit? Ay sus…haaay naku…

          They think It’s easier to blame Mar than admit their mistakes.

  20. Praset says:

    China just released new 100 RMB notes, could some China expert here tell us why it make this smart move ?

    (Flagged by spam system as troll. JoeAm)

  21. chempo says:

    Obed : “Have you noticed that in this worlds 3rd biggest exporter of Coconuts there are barely Coconut dishes? That Coconut milk here comes from Thailand and Malaysia, there is no Coconut Soap in this country also. Instead of actively adding value to a resource they have plenty of they choose the easy way out. Why ?”

    A stupid mainlander trying to teach polynesian islanders on the uses of coconut trees.

    Coconut trees are amazing. Practically every part of the tree is a raw material for some products and Philippines have been making and exporting these products for years. This troll Obed apparently lives in some shit back-waters. Products of Philippines from the coconut tree includes :

    From Coconut Meat
    – Coconut oil, coconut flour, desiccated coconut, coconut milk, coconut chips, candies, bukayo or local sweetened shredded coconut meat, latik copra, animal feeds, coco chips, which are curved and wrinkled coconut meat, is crisply toasted and salted. It is very popular in Hawaii.

    From coconut oil
    – Detergent, soap, lard, coco chemicals, crude oil, pomade, shampoo, margarine, butter and cooking oil.

    From Coconut Leaves
    – Paper pulp, midrib brooms, hats and mats, fruit trays, waste baskets, fans, beautiful midrib decors, lamp shades, placemats, bags and utility roof materials.

    From Coconut Fruit
    – Buko, often used for salads, halo-halo( crushed ice with sweetened fruit), sweets and pastries.
    – A mature coconut, or niyog is used in making sweets and special Filipino dishes.
    – The “sport fruit” of the coconut is the makapuno, used for making preserves and ice-cream

    From Coconut Water
    – Coconut vinegar; coconut wine, tetra-packed coconut water drinl, fiber-rich nata used as a dessert, laxative, substitute for dextrose.
    (NOTE: Dr. Eufemio Macalalag Jr., a urologist, came up with “Bukolysis” – a breakthrough in coconut water theraphy to cure renal disorders. – takebuko water for 7-9 months to dissolve stones in the kidney)

    From Coconut Husk
    – Use in cottage industries producing brushes, doormats, carpets, bags, ropes, yearn fishing nets, mattresses, etc
    – Coir fiber used as substitute for jute in making rice, copra, sugar, coffee, bags, sandbags, pulp and paper, etc.
    – Others – husk decor, husk polishes, mannequin wig,
    – Out of coir dust – coco gas, lye insulator, insoflex and plastic materials.

    From Coconut Pith
    – Coco pickles, guinatan and lumpia.
    – From its guinit – helmets, caps, wooden shoe straps, handbags, fans, picture and house decor like lamp shades and guinit flowers for the table.
    – Dishes – Ubod served served in many appetizing ways – Cubed in fairly large bits, it makes wonderful addition to Spanish rice, or in their long strips, to Arroz a la Cubana. As a salad, it is mixed with mayonnaise or thousand island dressing and heaped onto lettuce leaves, red pepper, chopped spring onions, paprika, or a combination of some of those may be used to garnish this all-white salad. Crab meat with ubod in lumpia can prove to be very delicious.

    From Infloresence
    – Alcoholic beverages, vinegar, sugar, gin, source for yeast, candy trays

    From Coconut Shell
    – Household products and fashion accessories — necklaces, shell bags, cigarette boxes, shell ladles, buttons, lamp shades, fruit and ash trays, guitars, placemats, coffee pots, cups, wind chimes, etc,
    – Briquetted charcoal and activated carbon.

    From Coconut Trunk
    – The hardy and durable wood of the trunks – benches, tables, carvings, picture frames, tables, tool boxes, construction materials, etc
    – Paper pulp

    From roots
    – Medicine, beverages and dyes

    • sonny says:

      chempo, a super mouthful and all super true!! 🙂

    • chempo, thanks for giving context to this matter.

      Another resource the Philippines has is abaca – I am from a family of Bikol abaca planters…

      Where the Philippines traditionally has been weak and still is – even if there are positive signs of development – is in industrial- and export-level use of its own resources.

      Abaca is an example – I am presently reading a book called “The Story of Abaca” and it clearly shows the neglect very typical of how things have been done in the Philippines – inspite of the monopoly we once had, abaca importers from abroad often complained about how the quality of fibers, good upon harvest, degenerated due to bad storage and delivery. Now Ecuador is gaining ground with industrial-level production and delivery, even if they just stole seeds from the Philippines several decades ago, and Costa Rica is coming up next. Now one might say abaca is not needed anymore for marine cordage like before, when the Suez canal increased demand, getting my folks in Bikol from jungle to some cash.

      The reality is that abaca is know used by carmakers like Daimler-Benz to create more resilient car bodies as part of composite materials and the Philippines is not leveraging its export potential enough in this regard. DOST is now building own busses and trains as prototypes, has a metallurgy section to improve know-how in this area, but probably is not yet into composites. As for lambanog, the poor man’s drink, two Munich businessmen are the ones now importing it and making it sosyal in Southern Germany by clever branding, giving it an almost Bacardi-like image – the pasosyal have missed out on that opportunity. Now I hope that my mentioning this will not cause that business to have difficulties, with the entitled blocking it, finding “technicalities” – it is surely helping a local distiller make money.

    • Joe America says:

      A case well made in all conclusions drawn, including the backwater.

    • karl garcia says:

      The Coconut nut


    The pro-Chinese always try to come with the argument of good business. Business with the EU is better because there is no intention of conquest, just mutual benefit…

    “We should remember that countries around us are concluding agreements all the time. We cannot afford to stand still. For example, the Philippines dropped in the ease of doing business index. Has it become harder to do business here? No, not necessarily. It’s just that other countries are always modernizing rules to make it easy for companies to come in,” European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) Vice President Erik Moller Nielsen said.

    This, Moller noted, should prompt the Philippines to intensify talks with the European Union (EU) for the quick conclusion of the Philippines-EU free trade agreement (FTA).

    But then again, it could be Europeans are not giving bribes to some people and Chinese are.

  23. Praset says:

    Joe, you are disappointing me, you as a defined banker can’t tell us why it was a smart move to issue new Chinese banknotes.

    (Note trollish taunt. I figure he has maybe one or zero comments left in my patience.) JoeAm

    • Joe America says:

      It is not my field of expertise, Praset. If you have a point to make, just make the point. I presume you to be the expert.

      • Annotating troll comments is exactly the right thing to do… BTW “Mein Kampf” by the Uber-Troll himself just went into public domain a few days ago.. the copyright owner – the Free State of Bavaria – can’t keep the lid on publication anymore 70 years later.

        Fortunately an annotated, commented edition is being published to give context to the nonsense Hitler wrote… OK I already read it in the USA, English translation… garbage.

        • Joe America says:

          🙂 I like succinct book reviews.

          • The Mindanao equivalent to Mein Kampf is this book reviewed here: Grandeur: A Narrative of History by a Hundred Seers, And, Our Intellectual Revolution by Ahmad Ibn Parfahn of Cotabato and Davao… it seriously maintains that the Egyptians, Etruscans, Turks, Dravidians and the Prophet Mohammed are all Malays and that the foundation of civilization by the brown people was destroyed by barbaric white Aryans… there is another book by him called “Sex Gangsterism” which maintains that rape culture in the Philippines was brought in by the Spaniards… a Moro MRP who maintained that the Philippines must be cleansed of mestizos to return to former greatness… his granddaughter is promoting his works on Facebook today.

            • I wonder if Digong Duterte has read his Parfahn… some stuff I have read from his supporter trolls sound much like Parfahn… Joe’s article about Duterte “elect a true Filipino for President” is something they seriously say… and that “you guys in suits and ties should shut up the real Filipinos want Digong”… now Mindanao is a place where exciting things are happening, but also a lot of crazy stuff comes from there… enormous energy coming out of much frustration due to lack of opportunity caused by decades of civil war and marginalization, much like the marginalization of the Catholic South of Germany helped bring an Austrian Catholic into power, someone not even the Protestant officers who did the “Valkyrie” coup attempt in 1944 could stop… the Nazis also started as Federalists.

              Parfahn also seriously alleged that Jesus was a Philistine and therefore a Malay… and that the Jews killed him while Aryans stole his ideas to make Christianity… wacky.

              • Just got back from the court where I was supposed to testify. The lawyer for the plaintiff, by not signing the registered summons for hearing then repeatedly failing to appear in court is causing the trial to be reset for the umpteenth time, so may days and times wasted. I missed all the fun here.

                One response I got from one of my FB posts says “Does anybody still believes in him??? Even seasoned killers never brag about their misdeeds….i wonder…a case of reverse psychology??? Just so to project himself as “macho” and tough guy but in reality, just a KSP???” in response to:

                Duterte, diumano “umaming” hindi bababa sa 1,000 ang kanyang napatay sa Davao City

          • Ireneo,

            I met one of Parfahn’s students from the 60s (I asked about the sculptures he had in his home, and we talked about the sculptor, and his ideas, which I thought was pretty off the wall, so I took note of the name, though I don’t remember Parfahn’s books being mentioned, just talked about his off the wall ideas).

            He forgot Parfahn’s real name, but he’s a Tagalog, I think from Bulacan, Philippines (north of Manila). Though Parfahn converted to Islam, he thinks that was only to be consistent with his Pan-Malay ideology—- ie. all Malays are Muslims. He was married twice, both to Tagalog women, I think
            (if not Tagalogs, then the one in Mindanao was at least a Christian, not a Muslim/Moro woman… verify that with the granddaughter).

            He’s not a graduate of high school, or was it college… Although he’s largely self-taught. He’s an anti- academic, blaming them for what’s wrong with the Philippines. But he is a respected artist, ie. sculptures, architecture, etc. and that’s how he worked in various schools & colleges. He’s well loved by students, very charismatic.

            His interactions with Moro students in Mindanao, wasn’t via Islam, but the whole Pan-Malay concept, so I doubt he figures in the whole BBL scheme of things over there now— unless his grand kids are promoting him as such. But yeah, he’s prominent enough to have left some sort of legacy—- but I doubt his book is a Mindanao anthem of sorts… though I defer to your social media reading of all this, via the granddaughter.

            Is the Malay Grandeur really that popular in Mindanao to compare it to Mein Kampf?

            • Was this your Dad’s paper?

            • I doubt it is that popular, and I just found out the granddaughter erased her FB advertising for it, although it still can be found on Google… seems she has moved to Canada now…

              Mein Kampf because of the similarity of the ideas, or more like Chamberlain’s ideas which were the basis of Mein Kampf. Yes, the paper is my dad’s, from the time my brother and me did a lot of typing for him, we were laughing the whole evening, about Parfahn’s stuff…

      • Praset says:

        Thought you were a banking expert, sorry for my misunderstanding,
        Let me ask you a question is Itu Aba an island ? If not why ?

        (Trollish mock humility posed as insult. Trollish refusal to make a simple point. Insists on raising issue to provoke contention. JoeAm)

        • Joe America says:

          My responsibility within the bank was marketing (primarily consumer), planning and special projects. I have little technical banking experience, and no foreign currency expertise.

          If Itu Aba is the same as Taiping Island, yes, it is above waterline and, although not large enough to sustain a natural population, is habitable with external supplies brought in. You could have made your point rather than ask the question. It would have saved me the time of googling. You know. As a courtesy.

          • Praset says:


            Curious that the Philippines doesn’t want Itu Aba to generate a 200 mile EEZ.
            Why? That island is clearly entitled.

            • Joe America says:

              I’ve not seen the arguments with respect to individual cases, so you would have to provide a source for the claim that the Philippines has objected to Taiping being considered an island with 200 NM EEZ. I suspect you are following the case more closely than I am, and perhaps can view this as a teaching opportunity. Given that the Philippine arguments were just concluded, you’d have to cite sources for the positioning, which, of course, would come with a rationale attached to explain the matter to the arbitration panel. The court will issue its ruling during the next few months, so we will know what was argued and what was decided.

          • Praset says:

            Itu Aba is in fact inhabited and also inhabitable in its natural state given that it has naturally occurring fresh water. I won’t pre-empt the Tribunal’s decision but it would be interesting to hear Philippines’ argument on why it is only a rock.

            • Joe America says:

              Yes, it would, if that is indeed the position taken.

              • I am going to see if Dr. Suzette Suarez of Hamburg is willing to give us some more detailed infos on what she thinks of the case: and – she has held a few symposia for the UP Alumni Association in Berlin on the Philippine ITLOS filing, my intelligence tells me the case is very solid. OK she is very busy since she works for an international law firm – she was at ITLOS for years, now I hope mentioning her name will not cause the Chinese to send their assasins to Hamburg:

                Born in 1970 in Cebu City, Philippines; 1987-1991 Bachelor of Arts in Political Science at Lebanon Valley College, Pennsylvania, USA; 1992-1996 Bachelor of Laws at the University of the Philippines, Philippines; 1997 Lawyer, National Amnesty Commission, Republic of the Philippines; 1997-2000 Lawyer, Department of the Environment and Natural Resources, Republic of the Philippines; 1998-2000 Master of Laws at Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia, Canada; 2000-2003 Senior Researcher, Institute of International Legal Studies, University of the Philippines; since April 2004, Associate Legal Officer, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, Hamburg, Germany; 2007 Doctor of Laws, University of Hamburg – International Max Planck Research School for Maritime Affairs.

              • Joe America says:

                It would be good to get that kind of view. I’m hoping that Justice Carpio will do another review of the case here. He’s done some really excellent briefs on it in the past.

              • I already dropped the tip to Raissa.. let us give her precedence as she is a true journalist AND a full member of “UP Cosa Nostra”… we both aren’t true journalists and I am only a child of the UP Cosa Nostra, who unlike Michael Corleone decided not to join hehe…

                Now if Raissa does not react within this month, I might pull some strings… Dr. Suarez doesn’t even have time to go to Berlin, holds her symposia via Skype from Hamburg… she might be a bit shy to go public, many Filipino intellectuals are cautious for good reasons…

  24. NHerrera says:

    The Japanese Embassy in the Philippines announced a message from Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that “their Majesties the Emperor and Empress will pay a State Visit to the Philippines.”

    This seems meaningful in the context of regional tension relative to China.

    Japan has long enjoyed close and cordial relations with the Philippines, the announcement noted. “The Government of the Philippines has long extended its invitation for Their Majesties to visit the Philippines, and President Aquino kindly renewed its invitation when he visited Japan last June as a State Guest.”

    Next year marks the 60th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic relations between Japan and the Philippines, and the relationship has been further advanced in wide-ranging areas in recent years.

  25. jameboy says:

    A trusted friend has warned me some two or three years ago, that a timetable of five to ten years – China will take over the entire Philippines and will declare it their Annex island nation! – Niteowl
    While I agree that we should be wary of Chinese trolls working to tip the balance on their side I’m also aware that trolls abound on our side that pretty much makes for a tit-for-tat situation.

    Troll for troll in blogs like this is not I’m really wary of. The Chinese can do all the propaganda they want and we can match it with gusto because Pinoy bloggers, too, are capable of mano-a-mano when it comes online dissing and trolling.

    I don’t foresee actual or physical ‘invasion’, I’m seeing enormous and gradual pressure from the Chinese side to make the Filipinos realize that they are the problem creating a problem.

    What we need to watch out is the idea espoused in this paragraph.

    You may think, “oh, no big deal”, but what if this is just the tip of the iceberg? What if China has “preferred candidates”? Can you identify the Chinese propaganda functionaries from the other supporters? Who are they likely to back? I’d imagine they would back those candidates who have expressed a willingness to depart from the Aquino initiative (apply international law) to negotiate bilaterally with China: Candidates Binay, Poe, Duterte, Estrada and Marcos have all indicated a willingness to cozy up to China. And Candidate Santiago dearly wants the US out of the Philippines.
    Furthermore, what if China is buying journalists and buying politicians WHO ARE NOW IN OFFICE? – Joe
    That is one idea I dread to think that could possibly happened if we do not hold those candidates to task in pursuing the national sovereignty and territorial integrity issue between the two countries. I think the issue should be on top of the list to ask from the candidates when debate time comes. 🙄

  26. Oldmaninla says:

    Excerpt “The great fear is not so much that China will invade its neighbors or sink our carriers, but that it will become powerful enough to draw its neighbors into joining an unopposable coalition. As the preeminent state in Asia, China could refashion the regional order to suit itself, and then with that coalition successfully challenge the global American order and its rules. ” Quote from JoeAm 12-2-15

    This is a “fear” statement created by JoeAm article, Here is the truth.
    1. China in thousand years of history have never invaded the Philippines, nor intended to invade any countries in Southeast Asia.

    China made friendship with its Southeast Asia neighbors via trade only. Evidence shows the overseas Chinese presence throughout southeast Asia. As opposed to the invasion of Spanish and America in the Philippines, massacred thousand of Filipinos, then established themselves. Spanish time 1521-1898, American time 1898-1946.

    2. Global American order and its rules is imaginary American prideful perception, an egoistic global American order.

    The global order and its rules is with United Nation global agreements and rules,
    American egoistic rules created troubles and nations war in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan. Currently America is provoking trouble in South China Sea, Spratly island, using international freedom of navigation as pretext, even using military navy missile destroyer.

    I welcome comment.

    • Whether China chooses to invade the Philippines or not, just make sure you bring these beauties,

    • Joe America says:

      China is sitting physically on shoals belonging to the Philippines. So your point 1 is untrue. Indeed, China has made commercial friendships with neighbor states, but she has many geographic/political disputes across Asia, all the way to India. Her outposts are being prepped for military use, changing the entire security/free passage rules for the South China and West Philippine seas. Even European nations are concerned.

      American engagement globally is an outgrowth of WW II and each of the cases you cite has a geo-politica context that cannot be wrapped up in the simplistic notion of “national ego”. Indeed, that kind of national name-calling suggests you are not earnest in wanting to discuss the issue . . . not interested in teaching or learning . . . but are here to sell a bag of goods. Or a pig’s ear, making that it is a purse. The US is not the only nation concerned about China’s assertive, unilateral, re-balancing of Asian geo-political boundaries, just the biggest, and the one smaller nations are forced . . . by China . . . to look to for their own security.

      • Praset says:


        Western propaganda has always been focusing on China because they are the challengers to US hegemony in the region, most of those are not even mentioning the fact that it is Vietnam who occupies the most islands and reef (most outside of its 200 nm eez) 29 compared to 9 by mainland China.
        Don’t forget the second largest Island occupied by phillippines Thitu island is 259.17 nautical miles from their mainland, out side of this eez argument they based their sovereignty upon.

        • Joe America says:

          The Philippines would give up Thitu if the legal process declared it was not hers. But she has claims, as Vietnam, Taiwan and Malaysia have claims in the Spratlys, based on history, use and occupancy. The Philippines is not fighting China, but simply following the process set up by the UN to resolve such contested claims. If China can make a legal case for Thitu, the Philippines would abide by the UN finding. But China will not accept even the UN’s mechanisms, even though she is a signatory to ITLOS (with reservations).

        • Ric says:

          It’s always interesting to see what “new” arguments you Chinese come up with. Yes, Vietnam currently occupies the most features. But as China is currently the most aggressive claimant, it naturally receives the most criticism today. You probably wish that all the features occupied by Vietnam were occupied by China instead, so your bringing up the fact that Vietnam occupies the most islands is quite irrelevant.

          As for Thitu Island (Pag-Asa) being outside of the Philippine EEZ – haha, sure, we’ll vacate every island we occupy outside of a 200-mile distance from Palawan, if you, China, also agree to vacate every island you occupy outside of a 200-mile distance from Hainan and southern China. Every claimant should withdraw to their 200-mile EEZ. Sound reasonable? Would China do that?

          Didn’t think so.

          Furthermore, you contradict yourself by bringing this up, seeing as on your other comment you were arguing that Itu Aba (Taiping) should have its own EEZ. In which case, why should Pag-Asa, which has an actual community living on it, not have its own EEZ as well? Oh, I get it. You want your own islands to have EEZs, but not ours. You like the law when it suits you, but oppose the law when it does not suit you. Typical.

      • Hiro says:

        Your rule: It is ALWAYS appropriate and relevant to criticize China on ANY discussion thread regarding ANY topic. It is NEVER appropriate or relevant to criticize the US of A and the Philippines under ANY circumstances. Thanks for the clarification. It tells us where you guys are coming from.

        • Hiro says:

          Western propaganda has always been focusing on China because they are the challengers to US hegemony in the region, most of those US mouthpieces are not even mentioning the fact that it is Vietnam who occupies the most islands and reef (most outside of its 200 nm eez) 29 compared to 9 by mainland China.

          Dont forget the second largest Island occupied by phillippines Thitu island is 259.17 nautical miles from their mainland, out side of this eez argument they based their sovereignty upon.

          • Joe America says:

            Here is Praset’s argument, of just an hour ago here:

            Western propaganda has always been focusing on China because they are the challengers to US hegemony in the region, most of those are not even mentioning the fact that it is Vietnam who occupies the most islands and reef (most outside of its 200 nm eez) 29 compared to 9 by mainland China.

            Don’t forget the second largest Island occupied by phillippines Thitu island is 259.17 nautical miles from their mainland, out side of this eez argument they based their sovereignty upon.

            Remarkable, is it not, that two contributors would say exactly the same thing?


        • jameboy says:

          Hiro, I’m not one of the ‘guys’. I just happened to concur with Pres. Aquino on the dispute in the South China Sea. I agree with what PNoy is saying about China and her bully ways in the region.

          If you have a valid reason to criticize the US or the Phil., lay it down on the table and let the other members here share their view. The last thing one can do here is waste space by whining.

        • Joe America says:

          That is plain garbage, Hiro. How about going to issue instead of the slander of personal motives.

      • Oldmaninla says:

        Point 1. Without acknowledgement of Japan surrender treaties historical records, only invite troubles. The surrender of Japan treaties with Taiwan, China and Allied Nations are there to reference and research in the Internet. Spratly and Paracel islands were returned to Taiwan, China. Below were the treaties.

        Cairo Declaration – 1943, Potsdam Declaration – 1945, San Francisco Peace Treaty – 1951, Treaty of Taipei – 1952

        Article 2. Treaty of Taipei,
        “It is recognized that under Article 2 of the Treaty of Peace with Japan signed at the city of San Francisco in the United States of America on September 8, 1951 (hereinafter referred to as the San Francisco Treaty), Japan has renounced all right, title and claim to Taiwan (Formosa) and Penghu (the Pescadores) as well as the Spratly Islands and the Paracel Islands.”
        Therefore, China, South China Sea territory sovereignty is clear and historical.

        Point 2. My statement that UNITED NATION is the global order by way of its collective agreements and its rules are based on existing history and currently in record and some are in effect and ongoing.


        Oldmaninla post is based on research effort from books and Internet, it is not hearsy, or assumptions or speculation. They are empirically verifiable.

        • Bert says:

          Take the South China Sea if you can. The American destroyers will take care of you. But get out of the West Philippine Sea, it’s ours. This is my words against yours. Be warned!

          • Oldmaninla says:

            Huwag magalit, Hindi mabuti.
            Don’t get angry, not good.

            • Ric says:

              We are not angry, merely amused. You are amusing.

              I have a question for you – why do you live in LA? If you love China so much, why don’t you go live there?

              That is something I can never understand about all these Chinese nationalist trolls – they are nationalistic enough to brag about China and insult whatever country China has a disagreement with at the moment on the internet, but not nationalistic enough to, you know, actually live in China.

        • Ric says:

          It is difficult to understand how Japan renouncing its ownership of the Spratlys and Paracels somehow automatically equals China having ownership of same. How did you go from this:

          “Japan has renounced all right, title and claim to Taiwan (Formosa) and Penghu (the Pescadores) as well as the Spratly Islands and the Paracel Islands.”

          To this?

          “Therefore, China, South China Sea territory sovereignty is clear and historical.”

          That’s quite the leap of logic there. You seem quite confused, sir.

          Or is this some kind of advanced Chinese logic that we just can’t understand?

    • jameboy says:

      I think for so long a time America has allowed the issue in the South China Sea be settled among the claimants. She took a hands-off policy on the issue and remained in the sideline for a long time expecting Chinese leadership to take control and settle the issue with her regional neighbors in a peaceful manner.

      We all know that numerous skirmishes in the disputed territories have occurred between China and others claimants with the US maintaining a neutral position while reminding everybody to avail of diplomacy and other peaceful manner in taking up the issue.

      Unfortunately, China is not taking advantage of the situation to showcase her leadership capability and desire to resettle the issue peacefully and instead just wants to bully her way. She just arrogantly imposed herself and go about her business in the areas it claims to own. Not really a friendly gesture.

      China has opted to sit on those territories like an obstinate elephant in the room and continue to insist that she wants only bilateral dealings in tackling the issue than resorting to international tribunal. In other words, if anybody wants to talk and negotiate they have to come to terms with her condition. Not really a balance approach.

      Unless there is a law the US is violating, I don’t think one can just allege wrongdoing. If there is one who does the provoking, it’s China.

    • chempo says:

      “This is a “fear” statement created by JoeAm article, Here is the truth.
      1. China in thousand years of history have never invaded the Philippines, nor intended to invade any countries in Southeast Asia.”

      Nobody here, except for you, takes Joe’s article here as a’fear’ statement. We see it as an opinion that invites visitors’ to comment.
      As to China’s thousand years history of non-invasion — that’s because in the old days o dynasties, China was most times ruled by cultured Mandarins. Under communists rule, China has been for a 100 years under uncouth, un-cultured, bunch of militaristic bullies. For thousands of years, the ‘middle kingdom’ was admired by ‘barbarians from afar, but in a hundred years, the communist party has made China into an object of fear and hate.

      “China made friendship with its Southeast Asia neighbors via trade only. Evidence shows the overseas Chinese presence throughout southeast Asia.”

      Chinese diaspora all over the world thrived and lived good lives, including here in Philippines,because all these good countries believed in democracy and they are civilised people who opened their arms to these overseas Chinese. China has not invaded countries (Tibet? Indian border? ) like the Spainish and Americans but has China opened its doors to immigrants like America?

      “Global American order and its rules is imaginary American prideful perception, an egoistic global American order”

      With all those technology that China stole from the west, mainly from America, Chinese modernisation today is a pride with shame.

      “The global order and its rules is with United Nation global agreements and rules,
      American egoistic rules created troubles and nations war in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan.”

      American intervention in these countries were for self-interest as well as for the interest of many others. Americans never stayed to rule. Look at Sorkor today, compared to Norkor protected by China. Americans left Afghan and Iraq. The mess that these 2 countries are in now is a different issue. We must never forget the hundred of years that communist China supported the communist guerillas in South East Asia which brought untold misery and sufferings to the peoples of Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Philippines.

      “Currently America is provoking trouble in South China Sea, Spratly island, using international freedom of navigation as pretext, even using military navy missile destroyer.”

      I believe that when you were typing this line, in your mind you know very well this is an absolute lie. If you did not, I think it’s time you send your brain to a neurosurgeon, and I would suggest one who was trained in one of those great American universities.

      • Hiro says:

        “With all those technology that China stole from the west, mainly from America, Chinese modernisation today is a pride with shame”

        Read: Piracy and Fraud Propelled the U.S. Industrial Revolution by Professor Peter Andreas.
        Sounds like you one of those brainwashed by the US media into thinking that only China imitates.

        All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them.
        Galileo Galilei

        (Note: Hiro is a confirmed troll, and not to be confused with others of like name who contribute here. JoeAm)

        • chempo says:

          Thankyou Hiro for quoting Galileo. What an irony communist chinese trolls did’nt understand Galileo was actually referring to u. Why is goggled blocked in China. Because your communist party bosses do not want you to know the truth.

        • The USA stole intellectual property in the 19th century. Britain was one of the main victims of American intellectual piracy.

          China is stealing now and that is the issue – it has stolen not only from America. Its fast trains and maglevs are mainly stolen German technology. A lot of military technology is stolen from Russia, something Putin is not too happy about.

          When the demand for Russian oil went down because of American fracking, China pretty much squeezed the Russians into getting less for their oil. So China does not really respect anyone, not even Russia. And not its major business partner, Germany.

      • Oldmaninla says:

        Chempo; your post is Interesting opinion however it’s base of your assumptions and speculations. My post were based on research from books and Internet. It is empirically verifiable.

        • chempo says:

          My opinions were based on living and working in a few countries as overseas Chinese. Hence based on actually living amongst ‘barbarians’ who are today much more civilised than people of the middle kingdom who has been living in ignorance for a hundred years under communism.

          You research on books written by whom? your communists bosses? You will even have difficulty researching your own history, no thanks to the cultural revolution of Mao who burnt millions of your books and cultural relics. Do you even know there was a cultural revolution in your country? Ask your old uncles or aunties if they know of any cousins who betrayed their parents to the Red Guards. How can your research be apolitical when your country is not open. How did you do research on the internet? Did you search through Alibaba, Baidu, Sogou, 360 etc? Why don’t you try to download Google and see if you get a knock at your door at 4am next morning.

  27. Bing Garcia says:

    So what can be done at this point? I am not saying that approving the Bangsamoro Basic Law is the answer, but it certainly is a necessary first step to create the foundations for the social justice that our Muslim brothers and sisters have so long craved. Let’s stop politicians from using it as a tool to pole-vault themselves into popularity and “winnability.” And let us make sure we don’t ourselves contribute to the radicalization of the Muslim. Solita Monsod

    • Spot on Joe. And more scary is that a lot of Filipinos are not aware of this invasion. They couldn’t seem to get their acts together. You know, a show of collective condemnation should serve to stun China, even if just a bit.

      • Joe America says:

        China uses anit-US and anti_Philippine venom to unify and emotionalize her people. I don’t think it needs to be rabid, but the level of alert and concern here in the Philippines should most certainly be stepped up. If it were, then Filipino smugglers would likely not be shipping Philippine soil to China to help her build her islands.

        • Right, stepped up should be more appropriate. Wouldn’t it also be great if the media highlight the Filipino sentiment? Sure, the media reports but I’m thinking they could sustain the citizen’s vigilance and fan the flame of nationalism.

          • Joe America says:

            They could, if they felt a sense of responsibility to do that. I don’t think media have that here. I noticed that in Kuala Lumpur, key newspapers are state publications. They still report the disputes and the political positions, but do not have the sensationalism we see here, the pitting of people against each other to create tomorrow’s sensationalist headlines. There is a much stronger sense of national unity and little of the “he said, she said” reporting. I’d wish for a middle ground. Private media with an ethical conscience that embraces raising the Philippines up.

          • Vicara says:

            An even bigger barrier than language is the giant firewall the PRC has put up between its people and the rest of the world. Our most popular social media (Facebook, Twitter etc) all have their equivalents in China, but over there are totally contained within the PRC and very closely monitored by the authorities. There are thousands of microbloggers who have managed to get around the system and speak out despite censorship, amongst themselves, but their access to input from the outside world is zero. In common with the other large, sprawling regions and countries like the U.S., they tend to be self-referential and don’t look beyond their borders much, or else they see it through a very distorted lens.

            There’s a generation of PRC citizens who study or travel abroad, but alternative viewpoints come up against ingrained habits of thinking–from fear of the Party, to fear of China’s own internal unrest, to a centuries-old tradition of looking town on smaller neighboring countries while seeing itself as the center. What the state does is allow a limited amount of criticism to seep through–against certain local officials, for example, but never the Party–just enough to let people let off steam. But the state has also perfected its ability to subtly but relentlessly channel public unease and anger towards exterior threats. The U.S. And now the Philippines, as Joe points out. It reminds me of the buildup of hatred that resulted in the Rwandan genocide.

            There are in fact parallels between PRC state rhetoric and that used by the Japanese military government of the 1930s, leading up to WWII. China now, like Japan then, plays the victim card, a pawn humiliated and hemmed in by external powers. It’s always the others’ fault. It’s always the Filipinos’ fault. Some analysts have pointed out that rising powers tend to precipitate armed conflict not during their ascent, but when ithe rollercoaster is cresting and it looks like they’re about to go into freefall. A pronounced economic downturn, a series of natural disasters, some gulo within the Party from which the public’s attention needs to be diverted… watch out.

            “China has more than two million internet police officers” according to this video:

            In a TED talk, Michael Anti, a China dissident, describes the ways microbloggers there there resist state control:

  28. NHerrera says:

    Re – Notes from the Editor:

    I hope just a delightful lunch, not “worshiping idols.” 🙂

  29. Our grade school Filipino teacher told us that before the Japanese invasion, a lot of Japanese businessmen and even workers started to come to the Philippines.

    The day after the invasion they all wore uniforms.

    China wanting to lead Asia is similar to Japan before and during WW2. China copying stuff is similar to what Japan did until the 1960s – after that they upgraded to do their own stuff. Back in the 80s, everyone thought Japan would one day rule the world economically – what happened?

    • NHerrera says:

      Comparing apple and orange Irineo? This is just knee-jerk comment:

      – Japan 127 m population versus China’s 1.3 b (China 10 times bigger; but that can be a drag rather than an advantage; haven’t thought it through);
      – Communication system radio then versus the internet and use of cyber-espionage now;
      – Etc.

      But I do hope it ends as it did with Japan then.

      (BTW, our 103m pop is just a shade lower than that of Japan. We used to be about the same population as Thailand about two decades back. Thailand is at 70m now. Some say we are on the sweet spot re-population with the right other socio-economic-political ingredient with assist from the appropriate implementation of RH Law.)

      • Yes, China has 1/5 of the world’s population and will continue to play a major role…

        But China like Japan will find its limits in two matters:

        1) lack of true innovation as opposed to simply copying and engineering. USA and Europe are still the leaders of innovation based on real scientific research. See Nobel prizes. Innovation is one reason Russia will recover. Russian land mass is another.

        2) the way China deals with others. Europe and USA are the best in that area, in that order. Europe is of course forced to be, because it does not have the power it used to. Russia will have to learn that to be successful long-term, but they have the potential, more than China has, because they at least have some idea of people being equals. After all it was half-Asian Lenin who gave the Soviet Republics their freedom. Putin is reactionary. His attitude even toward Russia’s Ukrainian brothers has alienated many possible allies.

        OK, China is trying economic and political divide and conquer, worldwide. But they will have to learn to adjust to those they control, like every great power has. The British had to learn to drink tea from the Indians, among other things. The USA has the advantage of being a country of immigrants from different areas. Europe has the advantage of being composed of former colonial powers that had to know their parts of the world. Resentment against typical Chinese obnoxiousness can take many forms – I remember how Chinese managers of German MSMEs bought by Chinese firms just went in and tried to manage the Chinese way, including cooking their noodles in their offices, making strange smells for German employees, and trying to order around people like in a Chinese sweatshop… 🙂

        • What is also interesting is the difference between my ranking of the major forces and that of Joe’s – mine is based on ideas, his on economic strength…

          Now I believe that ideas are more powerful in the long run…

          I .modern ideas like capitalism and democracy
          II. natural ideas like inclusiveness and sustainability
          III. old ideas like order and spirituality which also are important

          The clash of forces today is also a clash between how to balance these three aspects.

          Now China could be truly influential in the world if it revives the true meaning of its oldest philosophies: Confucianism (order and balance) and Taoism (nature and sustainability). Future world orders could balance of I, II and III better than today – philosophers wanted!

          • Oldmaninla says:

            I am reading your comments above so rich and deep in substance and observations.
            Your world view is panoramic broad and wide.
            Have you read the book, “Rise of China” by William H. Overholt, printed in 1994? His view of The rise of China from 1980-1994 is phenomenal.

        • Werner says:

          (NOTE: The spam filter flagged this comment as a likely troll. I’ll allow it to post. JoeAm)

          As World War Two drew to a close, the United States rushed to collect as many former Nazi scientists as possible through a secret mission called Operation Paperclip. As some had been branded war criminals at Nuremberg, the U.S. military whitewashed the backgrounds of many scientists in an attempt to justify hiring them.

          Wernher von Braun was a member of various German political organizations, including the SS. He was the chief developer of the V-2 rocket. This rocket was the first ballistic missile ever created.

          Strughold has been accused of participating in extensive human experimentation under the Third Reich, though it has never been proven. The experiments he allegedly oversaw included performing surgery without anesthetic and depriving people of oxygen in vacuum compartments, as well as human experiments related to hypothermia. These experiments were meant to determine the effects of high altitude and supersonic flights on human beings.

          Stuhlinger started his career as a Nazi soldier. He fought in the Battle of Moscow and the Battle of Stalingrad, before being shifted into research. Eventually, he came to work on guidance systems under von Braun.

          Dornberger was a Major-General in the army of the Third Reich. He was a Senior Artillery Commander and had personal contact with Hitler. His real passion and skill lay in engineering, and he was foundational in the development of rockets for the Nazis.

          Debus was another member of the SS who helped work on and produce V-2 rockets for the Nazis. He was closely associated with von Braun and was responsible for leading the testing of the V-2 rocket.

          China didn’t need war crimals for his success.

    • “The day after the invasion they all wore uniforms.” —- Ireneo

  30. Bing Garcia says:

    “I am still confident that there is still a very strong push that can be made. Of course, we’d want it to happen sooner rather than later, but at the end of the day, I think the movement towards having the BBL in its present form or with little modification is just a question of time. It will happen,” President Aquino said.

  31. Oldmaninla says:

    Bottom line, if the article is for peace, its good. If just to instigate troubles, then not so good.
    I noted most comments are based on presumptions, assumptions, speculations, loose talks,
    Whose lowly value has no meaning.
    While if comments are of good analysis base on truth to promote peace and prosperity. Stability toward progress, then it’s worth the efforts. Bye now. Your Bicolano old man in LA.

    • Joe America says:

      There are different values at work, and they conflict. I’m just representing one set of values which, for this blog, recognizes that when all parties arrive to listen as well as speak, to grant respect and expect respect, then we have discussions that are rich and informative. When someone arrives to use the blog to push their agenda, we get into the situation where there is natural push-back and conflict, because not all agree with the agenda. So conflict arises.

      The Chinese trolls visit this site with an agenda. So therein, we represent a microcosm of what is occurring in the seas. One party is pushing and not listening, the other is demanding respect and pushing back.

      If peace is to be found, the motivation and means must come from China. The rest of the world will not bow to autocracy, or else there will be a lot of blood shed before the bowing is done. So you should, I think, direct your comment to the Chinese agents working this blog.

      • vanderplass says:

        What is so funny Joe, one European becomes an army of Chinese trolls with an agenda. Only in the Philippines this can happen.

        • Joe America says:

          That could be, vanderplass. He is one prodigious European then, mocking up his e-mail addresses by the dozens, scripting his eloquent pro-forma arguments, posting them here, there and everywhere. I doubt it is “only in the Philippines” that it can happen, though. Trolling is a global passion for some. We have our own here, really talented. Are you our prodigious Chinese European who gets a rise out of tweaking the Philippines?

  32. caliphman says:

    Joe, what might have possibly triggered your software to reject a long response to oldman
    that had no links, dpecial characters, or expletives? Its a bit frustrating.

    • Joe America says:

      Nothing has come through the system to my Word Press account. It is not in the spam file, nor did it get flagged for moderation. I am not aware of anyone else having the problem. I doubt that it is my system that is the problem. I use the standard WP package, with no modifications, used by thousands of bloggers around the world.

  33. caliphman says:

    It just crossed my mind that it might be interesting if the troll high command stopped with the hide and seek already. Would it be so bad if they sent visitors who were smarter and more articulate who could present and explain the merits of the Chinese side? So long as they do not spew mindless propaganda and are prepared to reason their positions, it could be very interesting and useful for many of us. Maybe if they show good faith, you might even allow them to post blog articles as guest authors representing opposing views as you hzve done before. I has it all written out forold maninla but I just could notpost ig

    • Joe America says:

      You know, that is the thing, this need to be manipulative. I agree, if there are forthright issues to discuss, let’s discuss them. But this incessant undermining of the Philippines and US, while holding China up as perfect, is just plain tiresome. Read the comment by Werner. China’s incursions into Philippine territory are justified by painting the US as a scoundrel for hiring Germany’s rocket scientists.


      • caliphman says:

        These are scripted low level cadres and there is nothing to be gained from talking with drones whose view of the dispute is cast in cold war era ideology. Surely whatever objectives Beijijng expects to achieve by these forays, these trolls are so stupid they are easy to spot and become objects of idicule, their superiors must realize its not working and maybe something else does.

  34. vanderplass says:

    Thanks for your cooperation, our team (yes, no trolls but students) will forward you a pdf file with our final findings from our obtained observations. Publication of it is planned for the month of January, we will keep you posted on this.


    • Joe America says:

      Thank you. You for sure have my curiosity kicked up about a dozen notches.

      • caliphman says:

        Well that’s a sign that at least they do not necessarily have to behave like trolls. The test is if they can act like bright and free thinking students without minders appearing to monitor and controlling every syllable they write. I do not think many of us or those who follow the blogsite postings care for propaganda or material parroted to party cadres or PRC military. But paper tigers can sometimes change its stripes.

        • vanderplass says:


          Who are you that tell us how to behave in our research without knowing the details and tell us how to act ?

          Thanks for the added value in your comments.


          • caliphman says:

            we are regular members of an online community and blogsite that has as its main agenda discussion and exchange of ideas and knowledge which can further the interests of the Philippines and its people. If you are mindless trolls surreptitiously seeking to further another country’s agenda, particularly one inimical to Filipino interests, you are not welcome here. If you come here as a guest and not as such as a troll, then act like a guest and not as an arrogant thug demanding sovereignity and rights to speak and behave as you wish in our online space. If this was your space, no less would be expected from your foreign visitors and guests. I hope this response is helpful.

            And yes, if you have a Chinese name you prefer to go by instead of an American name like George, that would be acceprable as well.

            • vanderplass says:

              For us this all is closed and we have enough material to finalize it.

              As said we appreciate your added comments as it gives us even more insight about your personality (and confirms our first findings).

              Thanks for the cooperation.


              • Bert says:

                We know you, George, you and all your ilks, we know all your personalities starting from your first post to your last, we know your kind. It’s your job and being paid for it. It’s your duty to your government to do it well. You failed. All you guys are failures. Because you have chosen the wrong place to advance your objectives. I wish you better luck in some other site but not here in this Society.

  35. DAgimas says:

    there are so many Chinese trolls especially the prominent publications like The Economist, The Diplomat (is this a Chinese publication?

    when you comment about the South Chine Sea, you are easily drowned by these trolls

  36. DAgimas says:

    you forget to mention about the drug menace. look at those being caught, they come mostly from the mainland. its hard not to think about it but there was a precedent a hundred years ago..the Opium War

    • Vicara says:

      Indeed, and it looks like China, who still goes around trumpeting that it was the victim of the Opium War, is now a major source of illegal drugs in Southeast Asia.

      • DAgimas says:

        they are indeed the victim but its a good strategy to copy. spread the use of the drug (opium/meth) to weaken the target population/country. its even profitable

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