by Andrew Lim

Gotcha! I am not asking him to resign as President.

What I am asking, specifically: for President Duterte to resign immediately and irrevocably his executive functions that involve the following: the economy and foreign policy.

Allow me to argue the case.

When one starts to see conspiracy when there is none, it is cause for alarm. When Duterte asserted that the US is behind the drop in the peso’s value versus the dollar, and Budget Secretary Diokno immediately contradicted him, I panicked for Diokno’s sake. What if he ends up in the new narco-list for doing that to the President? Not only that, when Duterte promised to double police and military personnel salaries right away, here comes Diokno with his own reality show- not this year, nope.

Remember what happened to Fredo for not concurring with Michael Corleone? Diokno can handle thick economic textbooks, but what if he is made to eat them?

During the campaign, Duterte batted for reviving the steel industry. When apprised of collapsing global steel prices and after suspicions were raised that this was due to a major supporter whose family once owned the largest steel company in the country, he retracted. Talk of a musical revival that will never happen. Reminds me of Milli Vannili.

Foreign Secretary Yasay and Defense chief Lorenzana often speak of policies opposite from the President’s.

I am asking the Americans to leave. No, they’re not.

These planes from the US, they are just for ceremonial purposes. Sir, they’re from South Korea.

This will be the last joint exercise. No, they will continue in 2017.

I am looking to buy arms from China and Russia. He just told us to browse the catalogs. But we haven’t found translators as they are all in Cyrillic and hanzi.

I am about to cross the Rubicon. Oh that was just dramatics, said Yasay, perhaps referencing Marlon Brando in Julius Caesar. Or was it Clooney in Hail, Caesar?

I understand Sun Tzu’s “confuse the enemy”, but in this case Yasay and Lorenzana are not the enemy.

I will metamorphose. No you have metastasized. He, he joke. Neither Yasay nor Lorenzana said that. But Senator Saguisag has raised that question.

I will stop swearing at other foreign leaders. But wait, my oath says, “ I do solemnly swear…” He he, another joke.

The fields of economics and foreign policy can be complex or it can be simple. Depends on how many books one wants to read. In the President’s case, only two: Ioan Grillo’s El Narco: Inside Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency and Robert Kaplan’s Asia’s Cauldron and the End of a Stable Pacific. One is about draaaags, and the other one, Richard Heydarian hates. Heydarian is the only foreign policy analyst on TV who looks like a movie star, so I believe him. The others look like stale bread. There’s no economics book in the President’s reading list.

When NEDA secretary Pernia said “drug deaths are a necessary evil”, he was referring to Adam Smith’s “invisible hand.” Because no one ever sees who’s doing the shooting. The entire UP School of Economics fainted.

There are tangible, substantial benefits if the President relinquishes his functions for these two major areas:

  1. He will have more time to spend for rest in Davao.

  2. He can concentrate on fighting drugs, draags, draaaaags. My God, I hate draaaaags. Like shabu and Sass Sasot.

  3. He can give more OJT (on the job training) for supporters like Mocha and Alan Peter. Mocha will be given research assignments on the gyrations of the exchange rate, while Alan Peter will be asked to compare the adhesive properties of the various tapes sold in Ace Hardware. Alan Peter can then recommend which ones to use in securing new alliances with Russia and/or China.

  4. He can assign the eloquent and erudite (UN ambassador-to-be Teddy Boy Locsin) to justify the egregious (amazing alliteration!) – that the drug situation is indeed an existential threat.

Ironically, the philosophy of existentialism can be used to diminish existential threats.

I end with a quote from Jean Paul Sartre, an existential philosopher: “When the rich wage war, it’s the poor who die.”


This essay falls under the category of “satire”, a literary form that uses any of the following: wit, sarcasm, irony, caricature, exaggeration to highlight human folly. It has been demonstrated that it is a form unfamiliar and difficult to engage for many, specially social media commenters who use “bias” without the “ed” or those who wish rape and death for those they disagree with. It creates befuddlement, just like Secretary Yasay who hears things the President did not say, and does not hear what he did say.

  1. edgar lores says:

    Every morning of every day, I log on to the computer and dread what news I am sure to find about the Philippines. More killings. Another attack on De Lima. Another new low from unprincipled reps and senators. A new outrageous pronouncement from Duterte about foreign affairs. A denial and reinterpretation from his minions.

    I am rarely disappointed in my fear for bad tidings of great woe.

    But there is a rising pushback now against Duterte from all quarters. Here and abroad. From women and erudite columnists. From decent and law-abiding citizens.

    I second the motion. DU30, Resign!

    • Aurora Abad says:

      Edgar, I am on Lisinopril-elevated high blood pressure from reading and watching TV. Cannot believe where we are right now. And I absolutely agree with ever single thing you said. Divine intervention is what I pray for, with the others! If D30 knows what is best for him, I say RESIGN! Cheers!

      • edgar lores says:


        You, Lisinopril; me, nifedipine! Together we will survive this trial. Cheers!

        • NHerrera says:

          Aurora, edgar:

          I want to survive too. You guys sound like You Jane, me Tarzan. 🙂

          But seriously, I used to take atenolol (brand name) for elevated blood pressure. Then, there was this high fiber C-Lium that I took on recommendation of a friend. (I take the fiber not the capsule; one level tablespoon in a half-glass of water; stirred and taken; followed by a full-glass of water before breakfast and your coffee. Taste horrible for some but worked for me; my BP comes to 120/80 and regulates my daily toilet activity.)

          Sorry for the interruption of the HBP inducing news. We’ve got to take our daily dose of that, eh?

        • Rank says:

          Which trial? Clinical trial for the efficacy of lisinopril and nifedipine? Just kidding!

          But just in case you wish to know about the risks of your meds, try here:
          Or for info on whether our meds really did pass any trials:

          Anyway, excellent post by Andrew.

          • edgar lores says:

            Rank, thanks. I was alluding to political trials, not medical trials.

            But, in a way, at bottom, the current issue is about drugs, isn’t it? There are drugs that heal and drugs that kill… or steal our lives from us and our loved ones. The paradox of life in one word: drugs. On one hand, life-giving and life-sustaining; on the other, life-taking.

      • NHerrera says:

        Recalling the Sweepstake motto: the quitter never wins; the winner never quits, I sketched the item below.

  2. andrewlim8 says:

    In a previous essay written 3 days before the 2016 election, I outlined 8 concerns in case of a Duterte win.

    I prayed that I would be proven wrong. Alas, 6 of the 8 concerns have started to become true, in varying degrees of deterioration.

    1. We will hold them accountable if the economy nose dives, reversing all that has been gained in the past.

    2. We will hold them accountable for corruption in high places since Duterte has shown resolve only for small criminals.

    3. We will hold them accountable if a new clique of cronies, of businessmen with special privileges, coming from Mindanao, emerges in the Duterte presidency.

    4. We will hold them accountable if the rule of law is not followed in the pursuit of criminals.

    5. We will hold them accountable if Duterte re-defines “criminality” to include legitimate critics and political opposition and include them in his violent campaign.

    6. We will hold them accountable if our standing in the international community deteriorates and we become disrespected due to reckless statements by Duterte.

    7. We will hold them accountable if our position on the West Philippine Sea is weakened due to Duterte.

    8. We will hold them accountable if the Communist movement in the country regains strength after so many years of stagnation.

    The economy (#1) is showing signs of downward movement; the rule of law (#4) has not been followed, and our standing in the international community (#6) has deteriorated. #5 is being played out in Congress. Our position on the West Phil Sea (#7)and the resurgence of the Communist movement (#8) hangs in the balance. But given Duterte’s pivot to Russia and China, where do you think it will go?

    • edgar lores says:

      My reading:

      1 – check
      2 – check
      3 – ?
      4 – check
      5 – check
      6 – check
      7 – check
      8 – ?

    • Aurora Abad says:

      Thanks, Andrew! It was not just enlightening but a hell lot entertaining, too. I am tempted…People Power, anyone? No! With 16M supporters, it would be a bloodbath! But I continue to pray with the many millions more who are just raring to jump…jump D30 and his clowns! wishing you a blessed week! Keep the articles coming. In this weather, we welcome your insights and laughs!

    • Juana Pilipinas says:

      #2 – What happen to the Binays? Where is PRD’s SALN and campaign contributions/expenses breakdown? #3- What happen to Peter Lim? Aren’t Aguirre, Alvarez, Panelo, Bato and most of his communications people from Mindanao?

      • Thea says:

        It won’t happen. Not only because Duterte has the support of the 16M.
        1.The Catholic church will not have its grasp nowadays. Whatever pronouncement, from the bishops and priests, is taken as hypocrisy.
        2. The communistic ideology is gaining strength (top-down)and back in the minds of the people. Not against the government (Marcos) but Pro-Duterte.
        3. We are the minority now. We have to accept and think that the Philippines has been delivered to another revolution that will sweep the nation within 6 years. This is the continuation of the impediment happened in 1986. The Aquinos’ robbed them the chance.
        4. The people is resigned and not afraid to be killed, to be hungry and uneducated. I see a People Power that is pro-Duterte.

        Is the Philippines, Vietnam and Korea in the making? Oh, I wish all of us felt the gut before election.

  3. There is much talk this weekend about the crossing of politics and sports. Protests in both the US and Philippine basketball arenas. Can I admit that I now want my son to attend Ateneo, where conscience has courage?

    I greatly enjoyed your crossing of literature and politics, Andrew. I alternately laughed and cried, and as the tears mixed I wondered how it is that a warm and loving people could go dowh such a horrible, conflicted, irrational path.

    • andrewlim8 says:

      Thanks, man. The funniest tweet I saw today was Ronnie Nathanielz’s, which screamed at combining sports and politics. And yet he was a Marcos brownshirt, often appearing in talk shows. Ninoy’s famous interview was conducted by him.

      During the EDSA revolution, he was seen jumping over the fence of PTV4, too scared of the consequences.

      Anyway, so many of the sports greats – Ali, Arthur Ashe, and now NBA stars like Lebron and Kobe have utilized their sport as a platform for protest.

  4. I just enjoy reading this satirical piece…at least it lightens the soul!

  5. Grasya says:

    Draaags pa more! Bravo, Andrew Lim!

  6. Andrew, be careful. There was some recent confusion about a drug lord with your surname.

    Baka mapunta ka pa sa draaaglist o mahuli kapag may dragnet. Joke lang ito. As usual.

  7. Istambay sa kanto says:

    @ Andrew Lim, well written. Maraming salamat.
    @ JoeAm, you’re more than a Filipino. I salute you. Love the Philippine Flag avatar.
    @ Sir Lores, talagang “unfit” sa pwesto si digong, pinilit kase!
    @ Sir Salazar, ang kaalaman mo sa Bavaria ay super, salamat sa mga impormasyon.

    Maraming salamat sa lahat ng contributors dito. As a lurker, I learned a lot.

  8. gerverg1885 says:

    The recent pronouncement of the President to kill 3 million drug addicts should be a welcome news to so many who wants this war stopped anytime soon.

    The best thing he can do is to start with those who surrendered because to feed them alone is not an easy job for General de la Rosa. And then ask those who did not come in to complete the figures he wants to reach.

    There should be no room for rehabilitating them since they could go back to old habits anytime if they will be released to rejoin society.

  9. Francis says:

    “I will stop swearing at other foreign leaders. But wait, my oath says, ‘I do solemnly swear…’ He he, another joke.”

    Witty! If I wasn’t supposed to be studying right now, I’d list all the witty lines.

    Kidding aside—the Philippines must undergo the full Duterte treatment. Uncle Sam shouldn’t interfere and neither should the (however justified) critics of Duterte, shall we say, seek an “extrajudicial” solution for an administration fond of EJKs.

    The situation now is clear. The people love him and—thanks to his supporters’ mastery of the informational high ground: social media—buy his narrative of a “corrupt, biased media” and a “messed-up and on-the-downhill Philippines in need of a savior” a hundred percent. My personal testimony as a Millennial: some of my classmates buy this hook, line and sinker.

    Should Duterte disappear by any means (natural or not) now—you make a martyr on the basis of “what if’s” that will gnaw at the hearts of many a desperate Filipino.

    I think PNoy’s view that he’ll wait a year before commenting officially on anything is stance I can appreciate. 100 days is not enough to render conclusive (that is, for all sides) judgement. He has barely drawn, much less implemented (besides the Drug War) policy. He has not even passed his own budget yet. We have not even reached his self-set six month mark yet.

    I am reserving my full judgement until two to three years. That is—until he has enough time to pass a budget and see it implemented, enough time to thoroughly go through the drug war and see whether the results are sustainable and enough time to achieve his signature policies and evaluate them: pivot to China, federalism and peace with the CPP-NPA-NDF.

    Let him succeed or fail on his own terms. That is the bitter medicine that must be swallowed. The boy that never tastes a fall grows spoilt. The society that never sees war idolizes war to the point of fetish.

    • Francis says:

      To clarify—I judge him to be already a contradiction to liberal values. His personal character is frightening. And I think I’ve heard at least one firm, scary anecdote confirming this.

      But by full judgement—I mean, holistically, all aspects of the administration and his presidency. A bit too early to judge other aspects. For now.

      And by bitter medicine—I mean, unfortunately, the nation will not know how bad things are until she’s been hit with the full consequences of her choice.

      • A graffiti on the ruins of Berlin in 1945 said: “this is what Hitler took 12 years to accomplish”. Germany learned its lesson in the complete destruction of the Zero Hour.

        Hope things will not have to go that far, and that Filipinos are not as empty-headed as I sometimes fear, forgetting even what happened yesterday or what day of the week it is. Martial Law mainly affected the intellectuals. Which is why most did not learn its lessons.

    • Thanks Francis. Shared an excerpt from your posting as it sums things up perfectly.

      My additional comment being this:

      “What is true is that every country has to go through its own growing pains. Nobody from outside can truly help it.

      Comments and opinions will of course continue. Those from abroad like mine are just observations. Those from inside the country are part of the national discussion good or bad.”

  10. Kanuto says:

    I laughed so hard at the “invisible hand” allusion. Beautiful, Andrew. Thanks for the good laugh.

  11. NHerrera says:

    Resign or put to rest his much exercised jaw too. How about, with more time in his hands, brisk walk — jogging may not be prescribed by his doctor — with Cayetano and Mocha. It will be good for his health and waistline too. He will look more macho when he wears T-shirt. I don’t see Putin with that waistline. Of course, Putin is younger at 64 (come October 7) to his 71.

    The great benefit of your suggestion, if the President takes it to heart, is that we can relax too and, with decreased anxiety, live longer. Edgar lores does not have to dread facing the new day.

  12. cha says:

    In a real dark night of the soul it is always three o’clock in the morning, day after day.” (F Scott Fitzgerald)

    After spending two weeks in Duterte’s Philippines recently, I’ve seen enough and heard enough. Duterte will not resign, his followers and supporters will just not let him; even much less inclined those who have become reacquainted with the tantalising taste of power and influence at the grand banquet of privilege and entitlement their leader now hosts. For 6 long years, they have waited for this bacchanalian feast of revenge and new conquests. Why leave the party when it’s just barely started?

    And then there are those who are sticking around for the pounds of flesh punctured and gallons of blood spilled in their name; so they may enjoy breathing in the deodorised air of safety and security they believe now envelopes them. Never mind that the same seemingly refreshing breeze passing their way carries with it the faint yet growing stench of the rotting bodies of many innocent lives. If that doesn’t prompt them to leave this party, what will? Maybe when the master starts serving them up to his favoured friends and guests, maybe then they will wake up from their stupor.

    Maybe when the favoured friends and guests start turning on each other for the last morsels of pork, the disappearing dollops of sweet money, and the few remaining pieces of party favours left; maybe then he who sits at the head of the table will know it’s time. Time to make a graceful exit before the first ray of morning light shines on him and exposes the ugly truth. For beneath the shining armour of promise and hope are but the delusions of a narcissist with a hollow core.

    “The dark night of the soul comes just before revelation. When everything is lost,and all seems darkness, then comes the new life, and all that is needed.” – Joseph Campbell

    • edgar lores says:


      I have always wanted to visit, to go home again. But if the past is a foreign country, then the present must also be one, if not a stranger one too.

      The political opportunism you describe is certainly not new. The grasp for advantage, lucre and power have always been there. What is new are the red-tinged days, the strewing of dead bodies, the spill of blood, the coffins on sidewalks.

      Perhaps a flying visit, as you have paid, is the way to go. But I am loath to venture for real into the world you describe. If I dread the daily news at my far remove, how much more would I squirm to be at the very scene? Better for me to remember the halcyon days of childhood.

      If only memory were reproducible and the innocence of the past recaptured in the future… then we would be able to go home again.

      • cha says:

        Didn’t feel like home anymore, Edgar. The first few days have been the most difficult. While fully aware of the extent of popularity and support Duterte enjoyed among many in the country, it still came as a shock to hear the many unabashed expressions of approval for his ways and contempt for those who oppose him; from those seated right next to you in the car, at the dinner table, or just across from you at a social function. I felt like a stranger among some of my own family, an alien in my old home grounds.

        I said a final goodbye to the strange land on the night I flew out. Someone asked why I couldn’t have just said “till we meet again” instead. Some things, I thought, are better left unsaid.

        • sonny says:

          @ cha, saw and felt all you said while i was there.

          @ edgar, can’t put better than you did, now that I am back and looking.

          very saddened and totally dumbstruck, amidst the lush green of the countryside and warmth of the innocents …

          • edgar lores says:

            “But why had he always felt so strongly the magnetic pull of home, why had he thought so much about it and remembered it with such blazing accuracy, if it did not matter, and if this little town, and the immortal hills around it, was not the only home he had on earth? He did not know. All that he knew was that the years flow by like water, and that one day men come home again.”
            ― Thomas Wolfe, You Can’t Go Home Again

            • The brutalization of Philippine society was very evident in the Arroyo period, movies like those of Brillante Mendoza and the movie “Metro Manila” show this. This brutalization has now culminated in a general lack of empathy. Much like the brutalization of the Weimar Republic (evidenced by Brecht’s Three Penny Opera among other things) culminated in you-know-who, even if like Mark Twain wrote: “History never repeats itself, but it rhymes”.

              While some were in denial, others exaggerated things – which got everything to this point.

  13. karlgarcia says:

    What contract or document,does the president need to sign again?
    Resign the Social Contract,please.

    Other contracts,treaties and agreements you are willing to throw out,just resign the social contract,that would compensate.

    Invisible hand- If there are self driving cars,there are self firing guns.

    Also laughed loud at “Confuse the enemy”- every one is confused.

    Of course the priceless-End Note.

    brownshirt- good counter to yellow turds

  14. Francis says:

    If I may:

    On seeing Duterte supporters as almost always equivalent to trolls—I can’t help but feel that such notion is not good for the nation and even for improving the prospects of liberal ideals themselves. Times have changed and that liberals must see and understand that. Perhaps—there was a time where such suspicion was valid; where the stain of black propaganda was evident and clear.

    But let us remember that, in America, the Tea Party was once funded by vested right-wing interests—and yet those interests are helpless now in seeing their creature take an independent life of its own: Trump. Perhaps Marcos and other unsavory elements may have made the environment favorable for Duterte—but the vast majority of Duterte supporters (that goes for both the talking head “counter-intelligentsia” part and the rank-and-file in the comments sections) appear to me not as puppets of some cunning trapo or manipulative strategists, but rather as genuine and heart-felt supporters with passionate ideas for helping the nation.

    Bluntly—much like the people in this blog. Except of different political colors, of different philosophies: more Hobbes, less Rosseau.

    On a semi-related note, this link ( ) talks about how we cannot run away from the emotional investment we have in our ideas and our beliefs. We can be as emotional as the people on the other side. As tribal, even. And we should acknowledge that, especially in this time of intense political partisanship.

    I, for one, will be the first one to deny being Duterte apologist. I don’t like the man. I grew up reading Newsweek and opinion articles on the Inquirer. The “tribal” aspect of my liberalism finds him repugnant. The way he treats liberal norms like trash—the way his supporters act as if the previous administrations did absolutely nothing, as if there was no Messiah but Digong himself. God! I know I keep repeating this too much here and elsewhere—but I’ve always had a deep admiration for the Filipino democray. In particular, I’ve always admired how we boast a thriving civil society—the heart of ny genuine democracy. That we don’t have to rely on some foreign NGOs, some foreign implants, to “gift” us democracy. That these are staffed and led by ex-activists who’ve been tested through actual struggle (Martial Law) and therefore are genuinely committed to liberal ideals.

    No amount of nation-building in Iraq or elsewhere, run by outsiders, can do that. And I am proud of that. Which is why I get riled up when people say Duterte is be-it-all of Philippine politics. Bah. A throw-back to a servile reliance on “big men” more like it. A spit in the face for the “idiotic idealists” you’ve (not to anyone here, but to people in general) always ridiculed for going into advocacies like human rights and the environment kasi walang pera naman diyan.

    But, whenever I am compelled to rant on FB, I can’t help but think of my Tita. She’s a much better person than me. I’m a lazy, procrastinating bum. She’s a tireless housewife, a loving wife and mother—one of the kindest and most sincere people I know. Yet, she’s on the other side. And who am I to judge? These people on the other side are normal people, like you and me. They go to work or study. They have families and friends. They are, for the most part, exemplary Filipinos.

    That also goes for Mocha Uson. Heck, that’s also goes to the talking-heads on the other side. That also goes for Sass Gasot. That also goes for Thinking Pinoy whoever he is,

    The situation has changed. The debate is no longer by “liberal” standards. The debate of the nation is no longer a debate of which is the best way to apply the ideals of liberalism. Which—and this must be admitted—is why EJKs do not move people. The debate is no longer, “Is this by liberal standards? If so, is it the best way to achieve liberal ideals?” It is no longer a pragmatic question of the best application of liberal ideals. No, it is a debate for the first principles of the nation itself—the soul, the first values of the nation.

    The question of the debate is, “Is liberalism even the appropriate ideal for the Philippines?”

    And that isn’t obvious now. Because, let us admit it—liberalism is the mighty establishment here. How many professors are enthusiastic with the administration? Journalists? Liberalism is—watch that word: organized—the intelligentsia. And so it easy to look down on the other side, to generalize them to Mocha Uson, on the strength of degrees. Yet, where were the oracles with Trump?

    The wall looks mighty, but the roots of small plants amd the tiniest rain drops, over the years and years, wear it down,

    But to “look down” on them is to lend fire to their flames. The strength of demogogues lies in the intentional—and even unintentional—condescension of the thinkers. Look the angry mobs in the eyes as equals, and you rob them of a good bit of their rebellious, populist glow. They want a debate? Then it is only proper to give them the fullest respect and treat them as worthy intellectual rivals. No holding back. We all owe it to our nation and succeeding generations to make this national debate for the soul worth it.

    Troll for me, refers to a person who is only there for self-interest. Alan, the man who made the Faustian pact, is perhaps one. But the idealists on the other side? I don’t think they are.

    • NHerrera says:

      Your thoughts are explained well and find it a good read. Indeed the debate is not ended on both sides. But still are there no irreducible principles or ideals to go by?

      I am not as good as you and others here in explaining the intricacies of ideals and philosophies and whether we have to scrap the whole basket of knowledge of the past because Duterte and Trump came along.

      Yes, the wheel needs fixing but do we start all over again and say — aha, should not the wheel be a square, the better so it does not roll down the ravine?

      • NHerrera says:

        As an example, does Senator Lacson makes sense here:

        I think this “soft” ally of the President in the Senate makes a lot of sense.

        Here is Senator Lacson:

        “Miski sinong pangulo binibigyan ng at least six months na honeymoon period… Tatagal lang ang honeymoon period kung halimbawa pinagbibigyan na maka-adjust ang bagong administrasyon doon sa bagong tungkulin na inatas sa kanila.”

        “Pero kung paulit-ulit, iiksi ang honeymoon period… Kung iyon at iyon rin ang issue, hindi naman nababago at iyon pa rin ang controversy, baka umiksi ang honeymoon period.”

        I would think items like this should be part of the debate.

        • karlgarcia says:

          Now that leaves Gordon,
          A staunch advocate of the International Humanitarian Law in the senate.
          The Red Cross is supposedly the huminatarian organization.
          Why did he want to suspend the writ of habeas corpus?

          On the senate hearings on EJK,he knows how it is to lose someone because of violence,he is more that qualified to chair the justice committee,but I still feel disappointed with him.

          Going back to Red Cross.
          He must be also the one to remind the president who helped in Yolanda.

          • karlgarcia says:

            I no longer know what to feel.I thought Gordon attempted to be fair,but that all changed in a flash.

            • edgar lores says:

              Karl, stick to the values you think and feel are right. Be open-minded but do not be swayed… unless there are cogent reasons. The Gordons, the Alvarezes, the Farinases are weathercocks. They are not welded to pedestals of principles.

            • NHerrera says:

              “… changed in a flash” as in The Way of All Flesh and the associated hypocrisy as well as those of his Senate allies.

              • karlgarcia says:

                Victorian era hypocrisy….what era are we in? Dutertian?
                I read the synopsis of the film version of The Way of all Flesh which is not related at all to Samuel Butler’s piece,a very sad story.

    • karlgarcia says:

      Thanks again for your views,I understood you more.I understand your feeling about trolls because I also have titas who are very pro Duterte.
      Trolls before they are just link baiters,leading you to their website or another website,now the definition is evolving to ridiculing or bashing others.

      I like it when they were just Dolls.

      • karlgarcia says:

        I just fnd it diffcult reading people calling each other tards,turds,or trolls,but should I call it the name of the game?It is is no longer just in forums,comment threads,and social media this extends offline.What is happening? What is going on?

    • edgar lores says:


      You have just restated the ethnocentric argument. It does not wash.

      What other values would you propose versus liberalism?

      • Thea says:

        @Edgar and Francis

        I propose goodness. For it is the opposite of evil. Just like what VP Leni is doing right now.
        It may be slow but it will win deeper and direct.

        When I go back to the Philippines, opposition is not what it takes to change an avid supporter. I will do more good and gain respect.

        • edgar lores says:

          Thea, thanks. I appreciate that goodness is the highest virtue for those, like you, who are pure in heart.

          The difficulty with goodness is that, like beauty, it is in the eye of the beholder. Some people see Duterte’s anti-drug war as being good; others don’t. So goodness requires further refinement and qualification.

          In political terms, what does goodness consist of? Francis answer was Liberalism. And I agree.

          But Francis is troubled so he posed the further question: Are the ideals of Liberalism appropriate for the Philippines?

          For me, the answer is clear: the values of Liberalism are universal, independent of place. They are encoded in our laws and have been for more than a century. True, not all the people understand or care for these values. But many people do. And, if we are to live a happy life as a community, then we must understand, appreciate, and live these values.

          • Goodness or “kagandahang-loob” were the values of the Katipunan. In fact Filipino nationalists have criticized Western liberal values, but barked at the wrong tree.

            They did NOT really mean Western liberal values, they meant the trapoist way they were lived in the Philippine version of elite democracy from Aguinaldo onward. But the trapos used the terms of liberalism. Somewhat like mimicry in the animal kingdom..

      • Francis says:

        If I may offer a brief response:

        1. “You have just restated the ethnocentric argument. It does not wash.”

        You misunderstand. The notion of “ethnocentrism” was not directly in my mind when I was writing my post above. Maybe it was implicitly—but that’s all. I was not making a subjective value judgement on liberalism. I was merely making an objective observation—that liberalism is no longer the “dominant” or is at risk of no longer being the “dominant” ideology in common political discourse. The prima facie evidence for this is simply the intense partisanship and polarization occuring, the overwhelming support or, if not support, tolerance for Duterte’s policies.

        Of course—in the course of writing this response—I read your points regarding ethnocentrism and I can’t help but have some critical points regarding that. Class cannot be ignored in any analysis of Filipino culture and values; I can’t help but feel that documents such as constitutions and treaties reflect a culture and national awareness of an elite, but not necessarily of the majority.

        2. “What other values would you propose versus liberalism?”

        I don’t know. That’s the fun of being in my generation, I suppose, as a (wanna-be) scholar. So many new questions—so many new answers. But, I guess, my answer to that question is another question—how can one rework, re-interpret liberalism for the 21st century and for the Filipino? We must understand that liberalism is not utterly monolithic in time and in space–that liberalism has always adapted to the needs of changing periods and varying locations.

        The slave-owning direct democracy of Athens, the young (and still debating between the agrarian and industrialized ideals) United States of America, the beginnings of political parties in factions such as the Whigs and Tories in Britain, the advent of the mass parties in Europe, the fragile democracy of Taisho Japan, the general rise of social democracy and the welfare state across the industrialized West, the many colonies-turned-democracies from all corners of the world—it should be acknowledged that liberal ideals have taken many forms and many guises.

        Is this a sneaky attempt on my part to sneak in a suggestion “orderly” democracy for the “unruly” bunch that are Filipinos? 🙂 I don’t know. 🙂 I find a simple “order-to-liberty” axle in judging democracies to be a bit of an oversimplication that ignores the various nuances a democracy can take. Rather—what kind of “orders” and how are they provided? What kind of “liberties” and how are they provided?

        Not matter of amount, but of texture and taste.

        Take for instance Japan and America.

        On the surface, Japan is quite restrictive for a democracy. Harmony is highly prized—and this is buttressed by a heavier emphasis on the group rather than the individual. On the other hand, America may seem to be more free; civil liberties are fiercely protected and a founding myth of “anyone can make it” looms heavy in the cultural background. Yet, does not Japan’s cooperative culture mean that their executives are not fond of directly boasting high salaries and moreover, tend to rule by consensus anyhow, rendering a dictatorial character quite rare, if not impossible? Yet, does not America’s fiercely individualistic culture give possible incentive for a dictatorial (“visionary”) CEO or powerful President to rise, a leader that may be highly imposing?

        The ideal Filipino democracy will—and should—have a taste and texture different from the West’s own. Hell, even the West is not monolithic in their varying interpretations of liberal ideals; the strong secularism of France is a separation of Church and State meant to protect the latter from the former, whereas the religious freedom of America is the other way around—a separation of Church and State meant to protect the former from the latter. There is no reason why we shouldn’t have a discussion on which aspect of democracy are good for the Philippines and no reason why such discussion should be feared—Rizal was a liberal, the Benguet Rice Terraces are the result of the countless free efforts of men, not slaves and we are a society of barangays.

        • My first article here at JoeAms – about the Tipping Point – mentions that the institutions of a country must fit its culture. Anglo-Saxon liberalism grew out of a specific cultural development – Magna Carta, Cromwell, Glorious Revolution, John Locke, Jefferson.

          French democracy had its own difficult path – Etats-Generale, Revolution, Reign of Terror, Bonapartism, Restoration, Napoleon II (nephew not son of Napoleon) first as President then as Emperor although he had first promised not to, Vichy, De Gaulle etc.

          German development was very tortous – Reformation, Thirty Years War, Westphalian peace, Napoleonic occupation and Rheinbund, Metternich Restoration, 1848 movement, Prussian hegemony, Weimar Republic, Nazism, Federal Republic, reunification.. the attempt to create a copy of Anglo-Saxon liberalism failed with Weimar, the Federal Republic was and is different, even the legal system of Germany is structured differently..

          Of course through all those attempts each country learned its lessons, found out what worked and what didn’t work on the road to a “just and humane society” – the exact words of the Preamble of the 1987 Constitution. It took generations of thinkers, practitioners and political movements to form the respective consensus of how to handle things in each country. It also took people who were willing to look at issues head-on, look for solutions.

          Good that there are people like you in the Philippines. Eventually the country will find its way, but it is up to your kind not to forget and to put things together for common good.

        • edgar lores says:


          1. I did not misunderstand. That you did not have ethnocentrism in mind makes no difference. The question you raised, “Is liberalism even the appropriate ideal for the Philippines?”, is at the very heart of ethnocentrism.

          2. Fact: your arguments tend towards ethnocentrism.

          o “Class cannot be ignored…”
          o “…documents… reflect a culture… of an elite, but not necessarily of the majority.”
          o “…how can one rework, re-interpret liberalism… for the Filipino?”

          3. I will grant:

          o Liberalism is not monolithic.
          o Democracy has various nuances.
          o Filipino democracy has a different taste and texture.
          o Discussion – rational discussion — is good.

          4. But let me define terms.

          4.1. There is liberalism as a political philosophy and as an economic philosophy. I am talking about the former.

          4.2. Liberalism has many guises – classical liberalism, libertarianism, Keynesian economics, and neoliberalism. I am talking about classical liberalism.

          4.3. I will grant that classical liberalism has nuances. Specifically, therefore, I am talking about classical liberalism as embodied in our Constitution and in the international covenants the Philippines has adopted. These covenants are the UDHR and the UN protocols the country has ratified.

          4.4. More specifically I am talking about these key concepts from our Constitution:

          o Rule of law – Preamble
          o The adoption of the generally accepted principles of international law – Article II, Section 2.
          o The maintenance of peace and order, the protection of life, liberty, and property, and promotion of the general welfare – Article II, Section 5.
          o The State shall promote social justice – Article II, Section 10.
          o The State values the dignity of every human person and guarantees full respect for human rights – Article II, Section 11.
          o No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law – Article III, Section 1.
          o Free access to the courts and quasi-judicial bodies… shall not be denied to any person by reason of poverty – Article III, Section 11.
          o No torture, force, violence, threat, intimidation, or any other means shall be used against any person – Article III, Section 12.
          o No person shall be held to answer for a criminal offense without due process of law – Article III, Section 14.

          5. Now, Francis, tell us specifically where in the Constitution is state-sponsored slaughter allowed?

          5.1. You say you don’t know what other values to propose, and you characterize being your generation as fun – in the midst of this ongoing horror. So stop trolling… and try to be an adult and be responsible. Try to tell us – specifically — what taste and texture, what Hitlerian provision of a redefined liberalism, you would like to introduce into the Constitution. And tell us how you will reconcile it with the list under item 4.4.

    • chemrock says:

      Francis, I’ve been following your comments in the Society blogs. I did’nt know you are still schooling, uni I suppose. You have intellect beyond your years. Keep it up.

    • J. Bondurant says:

      As much as I want to blame Mocha Uson for playing a key role in Rodrigo Duterte’s rise to power, I can’t bring myself to do it. It would be the same as blaming a lost, scared, fatherless child who–out of fear, sorrow, and rage–made a deal with the devil to bring her father back.

  15. andrewlim8 says:

    Dean Tony La Viña: “I hope the President has been briefed that the President never signs an international agreement.”

    “A President authorizes DFA secretary or other high level official to do it on his and the country’s behalf.”

    From Jojo Malig twitter account, ABS CBN NEWS


  16. chemrock says:

    Andrew, you have real talent here. Totally enjoyed this article, if not for the dark reality.

    I propose you for the job of The Town Crier.

  17. Thea says:

    I brought me sadness reading Cha’s comment. Deep sadness. I feel I do not belong anymore to the family and friends I esteemed to see and hug. Will this Christmas gathering be the same as in the past? Is going back home worth it?

    Well,that’s the emotional side of me.

    Duterte will not resign,he will commit suicide. As he said.

  18. andrewlim8 says:


    The Leila video is fake. What is more interesting, if you can find it are:

    1. The failed hair transplant procedure of Aguirre and his search for the right toupee.

    2. The train wreck in slow motion Teddy Locsin who has been reduced into a foul mouthed troll, continuously blocking his former followers on Twitter.

    ha ha ha

  19. andy ibay says:

    A great piece this RESIGN one. In the late sixties I was learning and watching when I read and heard may be from J. Wright Diokno: When you are given a dough nut you actually received the hole. Also somebody said HE WHO RIDES THE TIGER IS EATEN BY THE TIGER, even the relatives and descendants should be. I should now be watching more than learning about the tiger and its riders; whether they can still dismount . . . .

  20. caliphman says:

    I find it difficult accepting the notion that others are trying to submit here that the root issue in dissenting against Duterte and his supporters is not one of values which one believes should be the bedrock of our fundamental law and social contract. The issue is not whether the mainstream concept of liberalism which espouses certain common principles and views over the ages should perhaps be no longer considered valid or at least suspended thereby allowing for the possibility that the Dutertists or Dutertistas have a legitimate basis for discarding adherence to our society’s laws and established rules of conduct. Rather it is the issue of whether they should be following the same rules of conduct or behavior our country has agreed to live by in other not to descend into anarchy and chaos where only the strongest survive and thrive and the weakest are abused, exploited and offered no protection by the state. The fact that these Dutertistas represent the values or beliefs of the bulk or the plurality of the masses is no argument that the same laws and processes that are part of the social contract that allowed their leader to seize power are no longer applicable to them. It is one thing to try and adjudicate Dutertista views and conduct as inconsistent and erratic as they are using the standards of liberalism, socialism or any ism for that matter, but at the end of the day what is being done is immoral, illegal, and inhumane.

  21. caliphman says:

    And no, not all Dutertistas are trolls and there are are quite a few very bright, highly educated, and well-informed supporters who might put any liberal elitists to shame. But the fact is it is these trolls whose behavior mimics those of their dear leader that is very much in evidence and not the few that deserve to be and should be heard.

  22. NHerrera says:

    I find stimulating the comments above on the notion of a Philippine new-found unorthodox view of “doing things” as against the traditional way of doing things based on universal values with perhaps the chiseling away of parts here, a nailing of a fresh board here, a hammer tap there, etc.

    Is it possible that the coming of Duterte has made us realize that a whole new heap of garbage have to be used as a building material for the “new way”?

  23. Joann says:

    Andrew, I am 51 and definitely not pregnant, but my gash, I vomit everyday from all these garbage that the Philippine government is trying to peddle and what is blood-raising, people are buying it. I pray that God rains on Holy Water in the Phillipines to wake up these people.

  24. Juana Pilipinas says:

    Thanks, andrew for providing a bit of sunshine to the dark cave where most of us spend our time now-a-days.

    A lot of Filipinos are literal so satire is not appreciated in PH. Then, came PRD, who seems to be the ultimateFilipino performing arts’ satirist (his translators will readily agree). Finally, a lot of Filipinos are “getting” it. Hallelujah! 🙂

  25. NHerrera says:


    The House of Cards or House of Representatives Speaker Alvarez has changed his tune on allowing the so-called fake sex video featuring PRD’s arch-critic. The HOR must have felt that showing the video after the objections voiced by many may start a tipping point of sorts for HOR.

    • NHerrera says:

      There is this brain disease that has infected the land, infecting adults worse than the zika virus. Supposedly Honorable people in Congress and Senate have been infected with the disease in so short a time. No need to fear the uploading of the disease; he started the disease. A disease that has distorted people’s thoughts on what is right or what is wrong, not only in Congress, but all over.

    • edgar lores says:

      Alvarez: talk big, think small, act zero.

    • NHerrera says:


      In the House of Representatives, Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas advised Mr. Duterte “not to speak anymore” until he could adjust to refinement required of statesmen.

      In the Senate, Sen. Richard Gordon said Mr. Duterte had a duty to be a statesman and he should moderate his language to protect the Philippines against fallout from his outbursts over international criticism of his brutal war on drugs.


      Can these politicians sense something, we have not sensed yet? Being so bold at this time. They can sense vulnerability of Da Boss? No more “Hail Caesar”? Only 3 months into his Presidency?

  26. Bill In Oz says:

    The Guardian has published a major article on the drug pusher executions in the Philippines.It includes an interview with a police officer who is a leader of one of the secret hit squads.

    • Harry Tan says:

      Some quotes on the The Guardian article:

      [1] “We are not that bad policemen or bad individuals. We are just a tool, we are just angels that God gave talent to, you know, to get these bad souls back to heaven and cleanse them.”

      The words flow unnervingly from the mouth of the policeman, a senior officer in the Philippines national police (PNP), as he explains his role in 87 killings in the past three months.

      It’s not about killing for pleasure, or being a “homicidal maniac”, he says. There is a higher purpose at play. “We are here as angels. Like St Michael and St Gabriel, right,” he says.

      [2] The fear is that the Philippines has slipped into an ERA OF THE DEATH SQUAD. The situation is unlikely to have been helped by the president’s own words and allegations made against him. Last week Duterte, after citing Hitler and the Holocaust, said he would happily “slaughter” three million drug addicts.

      [3] But first he reveals what for many will be shocking details of his employment in a death squad. “They have created us. The term is ‘they have unleashed the beast from the cage’ right, to neutralise those criminals,” he says.

      The officer claims he is part of one of 10 newly formed and HIGHLY SECRETIVE police special operations teams, each with 16 members. He claims the teams are coordinated to execute a list of targets: suspected drug users, dealers and criminals.

      [4] The killings mostly take place at night, he says, with the officers hooded and dressed in all black. They set their watches, giving themselves one minute or two to extract target individuals from their houses and kill on the spot – swift, precise, no witnesses.

      He claims they then dump the bodies – in the next town or under a bridge – or they plaster masking tape around the head of the corpse and place a cardboard sign on the body that reads “drug lord” or “pusher”.

      [5] The team investigates the individuals to determine whether they are involved in drug dealing or other illegal activities, whether they are “God-fearing” or a “parasite”, and then acts accordingly.

      “So that’s how we weigh him, so maybe we conduct our own justice,” he says. “And of course the government is ordering us to do so.”

      [6] Of the 3,600-plus deaths so far, 1,375 have been killed in above-board police operations, while about 2,233 more have been put down to vigilantes, according to the latest statistics from the PNP from early September.

      The PNP says it is investigating the vigilantes, but so far there are no reports that any have been arrested.

      [7] Inaugurated on 30 June, Duterte had been elected on a promise to rid the south-east Asian nation of drugs and crime within six months of taking office.

      The president has joked about fattening up the fish of Manila Bay with the corpses of drug dealers, and vowed the drug war won’t stop “until the last drug lord, last financier and last pusher have surrendered – or put behind bars, or below the ground if they so wish”.

      [8] At the Philippines Commission on Human Rights, Chito Gascon, its chairman, is asked about the allegations of police acting as judge, jury and executioner. He too is unfazed.

      “I am not surprised, I have heard of this. But the problem is we need to prove it.

      “And it probably follows a playbook that has been used before, LIKE IN DAVAO.”

      • “We are here as angels. Like St Michael and St Gabriel, right,” he says. – the policeman acting upon the orders of the President.

        And now, was it Andanar who likened PDU30 as Jesus?

        That is after PDU30 asked in one of his rambling speeches “what if there is no God?”


      • Harry Tan says:

        I can imagine the angels cringing at this shameful comparison.

  27. Madlanglupa says:

    I have returned after weeks of being in Reddit, of reading the news, and then digesting all the things that are happening until at this moment.

    As I observed, it is clear that the President himself is digging a deep hole for himself, the more he speaks and rants and bites on the pulpit, the more people are starting to question themselves as well as the motives of this regime, which is only focused on its singular Quixotic program of annihilating the drug industry to achieve a very impossible utopia.

    Reading the one Reddit response as to why the President himself makes unprepared speeches everyday, it is very simple: he is there to invoke fear, that he wants everyone to follow in line, follow his instructions, and kill the enemy that is drugs (as another Redditor said, “drugs is the new communism and satanism”); he has also enticed the greed of the people who voted for him, promising greater riches in return if he accomplishes his goal, that investors will flock in greater numbers, that there would be jobs for everyone, etc. etc. (when in the first place, he ignored economics and education, two factors that the lack of both, poverty and ignorance, actually promote the use and trade of narcotics).

    But let me back into what I want to say: that he is clearly exhibiting signs of the inability to govern responsibly, that the office he holds isn’t as easy as being El Mayor Maximo, a very stressful and dangerously weighty position, despite that he is surrounded by “yes” men and like-minded absolutists who won’t mind using any measures necessary to achieve his utopia.

    He is approaching the point where he is becoming incapacitated to hold office.

  28. Charo says:

    I hear you. I agree with you. I love the way you put it. Yes, Duterte resign!

    On Sun, Oct 2, 2016 at 3:00 PM, The Society of Honor: the Philippines wrote:

    > The Society of Honor posted: “w by Andrew Lim Gotcha! I am not asking him > to resign as President. What I am asking, specifically: for President > Duterte to resign immediately and irrevocably his executive functions that > involve the following: the economy and foreign policy. A” >

  29. madlanglupa says:

    Finally, the left-wingers have been shaken out of their torpor.

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