Open Discussion #2: The Philippines, an occupied State

What are the characteristics of occupancy? A ruling nation invades, takes charge, and assigns its dogmatic leaders to control the occupied state. Filipinos are born and raised to understand this, because the time of true democratic freedoms has amounted to perhaps 25 years over a span of six centuries.

The current occupation is not by a foreign nation, but by a nation-state within the Philippines, it’s empowered elite. The empowered elite represent a voluntary collective of people who individually decide they are best served by joining the occupation and giving it a higher priority than the Constitution, and the laws that mandate human rights and justice by due process. Executive, Legislative, and possibly Judicial branches of government are headed by members of the occupying force. Only the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) seems to stand between this collective and permanent overthrow of all laws, rights, and freedoms . . . and the Philippine State as it was envisioned in its Constitution of 1987.

The AFP is barred from acting against the ruling occupancy by the people themselves, Filipino citizens who chafe at the arrogance of righteous democratic leaders and who demand a strongman who will crush the arrogant snobs and bring a macho kind of swagger to a nation that has for centuries been beaten down. It is rather a demand for vengeance, the compiled angers of centuries of abuse seeking a powerful star who will make things right.

Well, never mind that the people are punishing themselves, as they did under Marcos, and are just repeating the everlasting cycles of occupancy, Spain, America, Japan, Marcos, and Duterte. Then possibly China.

Only an occupying force could condemn Filipinos to the animal existence found today in Philippine jails, or ask its police to shoot unarmed people in the streets because someone said the victims did drugs. And it is only a needful people who would listen to all the crap spewed by the State’s propaganda army and not find it insulting. Indeed, they seem to find it invigorating.

Democratic dignity and integrity in the Philippines is so very, very weak. The people can’t relate to its intangible benefits: inspiration, opportunity, hope, national pride . . . and a future of dignity and prosperity. They want the tangible act of people suffering.

As they have suffered, for so long.

If there is a way out, a way toward freedom and civility, I don’t see it. The empowered elite are everywhere, jailing and condemning good people, and gifting sycophants with money and jobs. Billions flows through the State books and no one is watching where it goes.

The only way out is possibly when the poor get angry because they are poorer than before, as the price of gasoline and rice moves up, or the PNP slaughter finally closes out the six degrees of separation and becomes first hand for way too many people.

Then Filipino citizens, the good but battered and vengeful, will look for another star to follow. Or they will rush by the tens of thousands to join the NPA and figure it is time to star for themselves. Or the nation will break apart island by island, each piece assigned to a new occupier.

* * * * * * *

During open discussion, any subject may be raised. There is no such thing as ‘off topic”. However, respectful discussion is always in order. Rude language or crude photos are not appropriate, as this is a public space. Teaching and learning from original commentary, with relevant reference to outside resources . . . that’s what we aspire toward . . .

Comments
102 Responses to “Open Discussion #2: The Philippines, an occupied State”
  1. NHerrera says:

    First, the picture accompanying the blog topic is superb — another picture may equal but not quite surpass that one. the Fist Salute and the Clapping Hands are just so negatively “delicious.” Not meaning to degrade the fine accompanying prose, but the picture says it, Joe.

    • Yes, that’s why this piece is only about 500 words. The picture fills in the other 1,000, or more. The Fist Salute is actually a kind of declaration by people that they are “with the occupation”, rather than democracy as enshrined in the Constitution. It is a symbol of empowerment, unity that joins the occupiers in forceful method, and threat to those who would dare to cross the force. I find it offensive, and particularly disturbing when AFP brass fall for the trap of declaring loyalty to the man, rather than nation. It also disturbs me when he is aboard a Russian ship binding his regime with the Russians in a power salute.

  2. NHerrera says:

    Voices of sanity, intelligence and reasonableness crying out in the wilderness.

  3. NHerrera says:

    Here is the full speech of President Duterte at the formal opening of the 30th ASEAN Summit.

    http://cnnphilippines.com/news/2017/04/29/Duterte-opening-speech-ASEAN-Summit.html

    Duterte acknowledged the presence of the participants, thus:

    Your Majesty, ASEAN Heads of State and Government, Secretary General of ASEAN, Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

    My footnote: Apropos the current blog, his favorite elite, Macapagal, is acknowledged. No mention of Ramos, so I suppose FVR was not in the audience.

  4. chemrock says:

    If the featured photo is the first salute then it has progressed or rather deprecated from an air punching fist to a fist coming at you. The interpretation is up to you.

    Long ago back in 2004 elections I watched with amazement at the possibility of a faux strongman Fernando Poe winning at the polls. Even back then I understood that as a manifestation of a machismo pysche in Filipino souls. We have switched from a macho movie star, a reel strongman, to yet another faux strongman.

    By now we should realise any bunch of elites can occupy the country. The people wish them there. There really is no way out.

    • There is the Karpman drama triangle – victim, perpetrator, rescuer – which the Philippines is caught in. Former victims often become perpetrators – to feel strong after having been weak.

      The starkest manifestation of this being how “Savage Girl” (Scully’s accomplice) explained why she abused other children when she herself was abused, that she wanted others to feel what she felt – “what if the slaves of today become tomorrow’s tyrants”, said Rizal.

      • NHerrera says:

        I am bolding that last line:

        What if the slaves of today become tomorrow’s tyrants

        — Rizal

      • chemrock says:

        Very apt Irineo.

        The only Filipino who should have been vengeful and to use Trump’s term, drain the swamps, was Cory when she came to power. There should have been a witch hunt for Marcos cronies and perpetrators of atrocities and thrown them to an leprosy island. The cancer was not terminated, it resurfaces with vengeance after a few years

    • That last paragraph seems true to me, no matter how righteous the wishes it were otherwise.

    • NHerrera says:

      Chempo,

      A minor parsing of the last paragraph,

      By now we should realize any bunch of elites can occupy the country. The people wish them there. There really is no way out.

      There may be a way out but may be led by the elite or Rizal’s slaves as recalled to us by Irineo. Then we have another turn of the cycle. I dearly hope not.

      • NHerrera says:

        I wrote the line on hope above because otherwise, as the bad side of me keeps on insisting — nuke all of them to kingdom come before even that guy up North does his thing.

  5. karlgarcia says:

    May I just reflect on the comment posted by Irineo of the jampacked jails with prisoners who stay five years without having a case filed against him or her.

    This country full of lawyers but not enough judges and prosecutors causing a backlog of cases.
    Then we learn that don’t even have a case.

    Then we have the police force, who for some reason needs more police cars, men, more of this and and more of that.

    Then the barangays which are more like little kingdoms.

    —–
    Occupy the housing, occupy the haciendas what’s next ?
    I am not against leftist ideologies and struggles, I am against take overs and anarchy exacerbated by insincerity.
    —–///
    The DOJ sec accused of irregularities in the immigration department and STL and having a congressman bagman or vise versa.
    ——-/
    The Military whose headquarters and bases are being privatized, housing units being occupied.

    Some wars were said to be manufactured and staged, for what?

    Peace talks, cease fires, then war again.

    —///
    is Federalism the answer?
    Will the barangay still be mini-kingdoms?
    Will the armed and unarmed struggles be minimized?
    No, so federalism is not the panacea

  6. NHerrera says:

    THE TOKHANG TOUR

    Perhaps the following link aptly name The ‘Tokhang Tour’ by Inquirer opinion writer Rina Jimenez-David is not out of place in the current blog — in fact, I will say it is apt because it adds ambiance to the blog. It is supposed to be Jimenez-David’s offering to the ASEAN visitors around, in addition to the hospitality offerings being offered left and right not only by the Administration but our usual hospitable populace especially those with an entrepreneur spirit:

    http://opinion.inquirer.net/103590/the-tokhang-tour#ixzz4fiQucf8h

  7. Bill In Oz says:

    The Philippines an ‘occupied’ state ? I think not. Rather a state who’s institutions have been captured by a small group of Filipino pollies & cronies. And would a real occupation by another state would improve things ? I do not know. Or is a new revolution needed to clean out the augean stables ?
    The current constitution is inspired by high ideals. But it is mostly just window dressing. And so it is deeply flawed. It does not help to solve the problems that afflict the Philippines people.

    • I remember awhile back suggesting to karl, that they write the President and other cabinet members, just to write them. And karl said something like, why would the President want to read my letter.

      Participation seems lacking in the day to day course of democracy in the Philippines, so how about making juries part of the constitution, I have to admit we hate jury duty over here, especially now that there’s no more excuses taken,

      but one thing it does do is force people into jury boxes, you ever seen “Twelve Angry Men”, Bill? Do they have juries in Australia? here’s an idea, why not “occupy” a jury box,

      • chemrock says:

        How much does a juror cost here? Maybe 500 pesos.

      • Bill In Oz says:

        Yes I saw it Lance. Great movie. And yes we have jury duty here in Oz. All the lower courts use juries unless the defendant opts for a trial by judge alone which happens occasionally. There are some occupations which are exempt from jury duty, like teachers, police, fire fighters.

        I imagine that legal eagles say that in the Philippines jurymen & women could be corrupted. However being found guilty by a jury of your peers has a significance that trial by judge misses completely.

        • Bill In Oz says:

          Chemp, the intent here is that a jurymen or woman is reimbursed for the cost of attending by loss of opportunity to work. Currently here that is about $170.00 Aust. a day reflecting sort of average wage rates here. I imagine in the Philippines, the cost of rieinbursement would be a lot less.

          • chemrock says:

            Compensation I can understand. Bill you have not come up close and personal here. Souls are transacted under 1000 pesos. I’m not kidding . its prevalent. Because of abject poverty.

        • chemrock says:

          Bill let’s be frank. Here they elect crooks and murderers to office. You think they can decide with true impartiality?

          • I’m sure there will be corruption, they had it here too with the mafia mostly in the east coast pre WWII; and I’m sure there will less likely be impartiality too, we had similar problems over here with jury tampering…

            BUT I was thinking more along the lines of some mechanism to force individuals (NH’s graph) to interact with each other, jury duty is one way; military service too, but that’s less likely to happen;

            jury duty though I feel you can compel people to do so… over here they’re making it more convenient by sticking most potential juror in a pool and counting that as jury duty (ie. you don’t have to be back in the pool for another year), plus cases are faster (mostly because jurors were complaining); compensation differs depending on private or public sector …

            Unless you guys find another venue in which you can squeeze all these folks in one room, to force them to interact, i think jury duty is it.

    • The occupation seems clear to me, although it is not by a foreign state, because the values are so clearly non-democratic, and it is large, not small as you see it. It includes the upper henchmen/cabinet in Executive, about 80% of the House, more than half the Senate, possibly over half of the Supreme Court (Arroyo appointees), the upper and ‘executioner’ ranks of the PNP, and hundreds upon hundreds of governors and mayors.

      Also, I think the Constitution is fine. But people’s understanding and ability to relate to its promises is nearly non-existent. It’s a cultural thing, or something that would require a cultural revolution to correct. There are no cultural rebels on the horizon.

      • It is a strange phenomonon when anyone who has the arrogance of wanting to help the Philippines is despised by both the crooks and the downtrodden masses.

        • From the point of view of a crook, the Philippines is: a full pork barrel of 3 trillion pesos, thousands of positions to give to priends, I mean friends and hangers-on, an Army and a police force to use liberally, not yellowly, I mean freely to deal with one’s enemies.

          From the point of view of a candidate, it is an investment in campaigning and vote-buying. Of course Bongbong Marcos feels cheated after spending so much, isn’t that clear? ;-/

          • Yes, I find it rather amusing in a dry wry way that the economy is ripping along pretty good for a small sector of the population, and big business moguls. Billions of tax money is being generated and passed this way and that on a whim, so the privileged/corrupt at the center can get rich without making much of a dent in the flow of money. Not until the various shoes drop, like rising rice prices, will anyone notice. But the ability of the entrenched to fund their occupation is high.

      • Bill In Oz says:

        So roughly 10,000 ‘important’ people in a total population of 104 million ? That is why I used the word ‘small’. And of course there are their camp followers benefiting from the crumbs that fall off the table…

        I am not persuade by your view on the Constitution. A constitution which allows/permits such a stuff up, can hardly be admired in my opinion. And if as you say, over half the supreme court judges are part of the occupation mob, then what does it offer ?

        • The Constitution could be perfect, but if few are fully dedicated to it, it is just a piece of scrap paper. The electoral process is flawed. The sense of ethics is horrid. The traditions of power and favor are deep and wide. It’s not so simple. I don’t actually think there is a culprit or a stuff-up. Just a conflicted culture evolving through a troubled history.

          • ps, as a percentage of government officials, the share that does not believe in the tenets of democracy is dominant. The masses also have little appreciation of human rights or defending the Constitution, so add that in. The modern, ethical core is small and ineffective at marshalling broad understanding and support.

        • chemrock says:

          It brings me to this sad note –

          The tenets of democracy is basically equality and freedom of choice and it rests on certain pillars, one of the important ones being governance under sets of laws. We know the laws in Philippines, the whole judiciary process, need straightening out. DeLima stood for senatorial election promising an advocacy of legal reforms. It’s a tragic loss of opportunity and talent that she is wasted away in a cursed battle of retribution by the admin. What we will just have is “what ifs”.

          • The ideals of democracy are those, but the tenets is participation, chemp… Where are the protesters for de Lima? If she’s so popular why isn’t DU30 second guessing his decision to jail her? One way of making him second guess is with a big presence in support of de Lima.

            Democracy is physical. Where are her constituents, where are the people that support her?

            • chemrock says:

              Thanks for the ideals n tenets. OK with that.

              Democracy rests on the backbones of a sea of support from the little fellas. The massa are non activists and their threshold of tolerance of political monkey tricks and nonsense is stronger. Perhaps they have more inertia because they focus on their livelihood. Put another way, the tipping point for them is a little further than we would have liked. As Joe said, let the price of rice go up. My article on the jeepnies said if they push through with the new 1.6m peso replacement models, fares will have to double up. If the atrocities continue and economic pains come, physical support is inevitable. Evidently leftist labour groups are restless now.

              • I get that “physical support is inevitable”, chemp. But in the specific case of DeLima why the silence from her supporters?

              • The silence I believe is related to several factors. One. the aging of the ‘yellows’ and the complacency that inspires. They aren’t going to go to the streets and do battle with the police. Two, there is a very small share of the population that actually understands democracy and connects it (passionately) to their freedoms and hopes for the future. And three, the Philippines is a person-to-person world; families are split over Duterte, and acquaintances or fellow workers support the drug war. People are not inclined to become outcasts among their peers by being loud and demanding.

                I would note that Senators Pangilinan, Hontiveros, Drilon, and Trillanes visited Senator De Lima today. Duterte has given legitimacy to the opposition, in fact, by being so punitive with his acts. Until the De Lima jailing, there was NO opposition to speak of.

    • karlgarcia says:

      Hey LCX,
      I thought you would use my name in vain, which at times I allow(tolerate) you.
      I recall that, but I showed you an example of my dad writing the communication staff about the president saluting, yeah it may not makes sense to many, but the recepuent that time was a historian,mlq3 so he responded and represented the office well.
      Well maybe I said we do not write our congressmen, I witness constituents going to the offices just to beg, ask for solicitations, report barangay captains,etc.
      But today there is social media, they use that .

      • Sorry, karl… that interaction was just too memorable for me, nothing bad on you, but since then I’ve been thinking about why we write so many letters and do phone calls to our elected officials, and ip broke it down, and it is about participation, elected officials just don’t know unless people they are tasked to represent don’t talk back to them.

        Letters of support , letters of complaints, letters of ideas, just thoughts, etc. all needed to make the elected official make better decisions. That’s right I remember your dad’s letter about civilians saluting (also a personal pet peeve of mine), that an example. and sure other media’s can be used, but the think about letter writing is that it is physical, copy furnished to others, even the press… by definition cannot be anonymous, hence more powerful than phone calls, or emails.

        Write the president (about anything), and just see if his office responds back—- the simplest test for responsive. Occupy their mail rooms, karl!

    • madlanglupa says:

      > The Philippines an ‘occupied’ state ? I think not.

      I once came across someone who wrote that the first country the Nazis conquered was their own.

  8. NHerrera says:

    The picture from the other side:

    http://www.philstar.com/opinion/2017/04/30/1695211/what-do-we-expect-asean-summit

    The message titled,

    What do we expect from the ASEAN Summit?

    and the messenger, Babe Romualdez,

    are not our usual fare here, but I would like to have a light day today, a Sunday — and so if I may, here is my last post for the day.

  9. Micha says:

    The thug from Davao gets an invitation from his soulmate and current White House resident pinhead.

  10. https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C-o6JTaVoAAwptS.jpg – doesn’t the Flag Code of the Philippines prohibit the flag being hung below any foreign flag? The last time that happened was on July 4, 1946 – and it ended on that day, is my memory of the history I was taught…

    • karlgarcia says:

      Many stuf are not follwed like replacing old flags and burnng old ones.

    • By Navy code, I suspect the ship is granted the right of being a sovereign state, not attached to the PH. So I’d guess no problem here. But the selfies . . . . not proper military bearing by US and German standards, but this is the PH where stars ride high and there is certain ‘face’ gained by being on stage with the star.

      • The Philippine flag still should not be raised on a foreign warship, I think. And especially not below the flag of the other state. But well, I guess anything goes in the Philippines.

          • edgar lores says:

            *******
            The presence of these ships in a Philippine port certainly disabuses the mind that the pivot to China is an illusion.

            In Oz, the view, as expressed by two Labor leaders, on China’s expansionism in the South China Sea is pragmatic: China is a superpower and must be given strategic space. In the same manner, I infer, that the US was allowed to establish air and naval bases in many parts of the world.

            This kind view arises mostly from the fact that China is a major trading partner and is the largest client of Oz’s mining and gas resources. Despite the differences in cultural values, China is seen as a partner, more friend than foe. The relationship is managed with firmness, letting China know where Oz stands on human rights and other democratic issues.

            Oz is a military ally of the US with troops stationed in Darwin and important military installations like the Pine Gap facility.

            Oz has also rejected some of China’s attempted intrusions into the country, like the bid for one of the state’s electricity grid and the sale of the largest cattle station, three-fourths the size of England.

            In fine, Oz is performing a balancing act and doing it with some panache. The Philippines would do well to do the same.
            *****

            • NHerrera says:

              Along similar line, it is well to differentiate the view of domestic or local and foreign issues. In my opinion the circumstances are such that comparatively, the foreign issues are handled better than the local ones, although far from ideal. By the time Trump meets with Duterte here November for the ASEAN and East Summit, we may have gone full circle and the balancing act — Duterte style — may be in full view. The handling of the local issues is of course an altogether different enchilada.

              • edgar lores says:

                *******
                The bungling on the domestic side is certainly blatant.

                Still, I cannot decide where greater harm is being provoked in the long-term.

                On foreign issues, our offshore assets are being casually, if not generously, surrendered. Incidentally, this is the difference between the US acquisition of foreign bases and that of China: the US did not insolently grab any assets that I know of.

                On the domestic front, the short-term effects of the handling of the anti-drug war, the continuing cronyism and corruption, the human rights abuses and the threats against our freedoms, are there for all to see. The long-term effects, such as the adverse psychological impact on children, will duly play out but the erosion in the rule of law will take many years for the nation to recover.
                *****

            • Bill In Oz says:

              Edgar, I agree with almost all you say except this:
              “I infer, that the US was allowed to establish air and naval bases in many parts of the world.”
              No the USA has bases in many place of the Asian world because it was the global power that defeated Japan 1941-45 and then stopped Communist attempts to conquer South Korea, 1949-54. The USA effectively blocked PRC from invading Taiwan from 1949-1960.

              The point being that these US bases were the gift of grateful nations in this region. The same can be said of Europe post 1945 with the Soviet Union poise to take over anything it could.

              My point also being that there is no reason why a superpower like China must be granted ‘strategic space’ just because it is becoming a super power. Where trust is present, many things can happen without causing problems. But that is not the case vis a vis China for Australia. It’s attempts in recent years to control the Chinese language press in Australia are an example of how to destroy trust, even when there is massive trade.

              • edgar lores says:

                ******
                Bill, thanks. I am still trying to absorb the argument of “strategic space” as espoused by ex-Prime Minister Paul Keating and ex-Foreign Minister Gareth Evans.

                I just commented on the distinction in the methods of acquisition in my post to NHerrera. Certainly, I do not approve of China’s method.

                That being said, the geopolitical reality is that expansionism by superpowers — whether territorially or ideologically — is a reality. The US with democracy. Russia with communism in Cuba and territorially in the Ukraine. China with communism in the Philippines, and territorially in Tibet and now in the South Chine Sea.
                *****

              • edgar lores says:

                *******
                Hah! I have “reality” as subject and object: The [geopolitical] reality is a reality.

                Probably should be reworded: the geopolitical factor… is a reality.
                *****

              • Bill In Oz says:

                Good luck with trying to absorb Keating & Gareth Evans’ thoughts on foreign policy via vis China. It amounts to strategic cowardice.

                Both of them were & remain arrogant pricks. ( Based on my personal experience in the 1980’s ) That was recognised by the electorate back in 1996 and both were rejected by the electorate. Now both of them are grumpy old men, now out of politics. but still wanting to pull the power levers. they used to control.

                It’s remarkable how much they have aged and so quickly. And the aging has not made their thinking any better. Some folks with age gain wisdom. Not these two.

              • edgar lores says:

                *******
                I am not sure that Keating and Evans are alone in their accommodation of China.

                The Government’s position on the South China Sea has shifted from (a) demanding that China adopts the Hague ruling to (b) neutrality, then to (c) dialogue between claimant states.

                Note that (c) is essentially China’s position.
                *****

              • Bill In Oz says:

                Edgar as the Philippines is no longer standing by the Hague result of last year, there is no practical point in Australia doing so.

              • edgar lores says:

                *******
                Duterte may not be — his record is inconsistent — but Carpio and a lot of Filipinos certainly are.
                *****

              • Australia would let the Philippines dictate her policies? It seems to me that the laws and national interest ought to dictate policies, not some backwater third world dictator wannabe.

              • “No the USA has bases in many place of the Asian world because it was the global power that defeated Japan 1941-45 and then stopped Communist attempts to conquer South Korea, 1949-54.”

                I just wanna add that those presence (to include Europe), lost their welcome quick, though the strategic stuff, allowed the host country to stretch its official welcome further… a bunch of American military were victims of various crimes to include kidnap and assassination ,

                I can understand too why host countries got sick and tired of American military quick, its a mess.

                When the Philippines kicked out the American bases, it was long over due. Around the same time, bases in Europe also drew down (post Cold War); I don’t know if this whole N. Korea stuff will change minds, but since the mid-2000s they’ve also been drawing down in Japan and Korea.

                I don’t know anything about this naval vessels flag stuff, but I do remember going into port in the Middle East along side Russian Navy vessels, French and English too, the Philippines doesn’t have to exclusively cater to just one Navy… like cruise ships, its also a good economic opportunity, I’m talking just port calls.

                Now naval exercises are all together different.

              • Bill In Oz says:

                Lance, US troops are always welcome here for training or for R&R. If US personnel on leave commit crimes they are tried just the same as anyone else here. It does not affect the standing of the ‘invitation’.
                In some places like Japan US troops have committed crimes against local people. And then not been tried by the local courts for these crimes. Now that generates animosities. And then the ‘invitation’ becomes less willing. That’s trouble.

              • Can you refer to specific incidents in Japan where local laws were not applied, or cite the terms of treaties/agreements that permit avoidance of local laws? My sense has been that the criminal act sparked the outrage, not avoidance of local jurisdiction.

                A US marine here in the PH was recently tried locally and is now in PH custody serving his sentence.

              • Bill In Oz says:

                From memory I think there was rape/murder case in Okinowa Joe in 2014 ( ? ) That caused a lot of anger. The instance you mention in the Philippines is an example of a US servicemen on leave committing a crime and being tried and found guilty. I have no argument with that process at all which is why I did not see any need to mention it.

              • Right, the crime caused the anger, I think, not avoidance of local jurisdiction. A few years ago a certain Private Smith here stoked 3 years of rage for allegedly sexually abusing a Filipina and leaving her at the side of the road. The more recent case involved murder of a transgender. Little popular rage.

              • The agreements here allow an accused to be held by the US through all appeals and ultimate conviction. Then he is turned over to the PH for incarceration if found guilty. The agreements mandate completion of trials and appeals within a specific time period. It’s all pretty civil, but people’s emotions can get stoked easily when perceived racial denigration is read into the crime.

        • Yes, I agree it is a poor display of a sovereign symbol.

          • Bill In Oz says:

            What was the intent of the Chinese commander of this Chinese naval ship ? I know absolutely nothing of the protocols of on this matter. But has he done it as a courtesy perhaps of acknowledging Philippines sovereighnty ?

            • Beats me. Just propaganda . . . er, marketing . . . I suppose.

              • Bill In Oz says:

                We are talking about 3 People’s Republic of China naval ships visiting Davao, Dutere’s home town in Mindanao for the very first time.

                Nothing by PRC officers of this ship would be done, for this official visit, without being thought through & planned at an official government level and then being implemented by the ships officers.

                By the way Irineo, I think the 2 flags are actually level with each other. The angle from which the shot was taken ‘appears’ to show the Philippines flag lower than the PRC one. But the photographer is shooting from well below and with the PRC flag closer & the Philippines flag further away from the camera.

            • chemrock says:

              Bill

              It’s all timing

              PNP chief NATO asked why the CHR exposed the illegal concealed lockup cell at the Tondo police station at this time. Meaning to descredit the president during the ASEAN Summit

              Shouldn’t we ask why the 3 Chinese naval ships during this sane time? Intimidation?

              • Bill In Oz says:

                Chemprock, Bato must be a complete nong if he thinks that locking up over 40 odd people for weeks in a tiny concealed lockup without charges is a great idea. It was a PNP stuff up waiting to be exposed at any time. And Duterte to his credit has not hampered the CHR so that it could not do this expose of PNP stupidity.

        • Ancient Mariner says:

          International flag etiquette dictates that when in a foreign port the vessel will fly the flag of the host nation.
          Google “flag etiquette”.

        • chemrock says:

          Irineo

          In this instance, it is a Chinese vessel flying the flag of host country Philippines, so the rules shall be in accordance with the Chinese flag code, which we have no idea.

          A visiting naval vessel flies the host country’s flag is a salute to the country or honouring the country. Thus flying the Philippines flag lower and to the left of the Chinese flag is a slap in the face, not an honour.

          To illustrate –

          Under US flag code, In foreign waters or to salute a foreign country, the U.S. Navy may fly the country’s national flag on the masthead of the ship. The US accord the foreign flag at the most prominent part of the vessel. That is the meaning of respect and honour.

          • Bill In Oz says:

            Chemrock.. I would like to see some more photos …As I said above what the angle from which the shot was taken has an impact.

            • chemrock says:

              Bill it does look like Philippines flag is lower.

              Even if I give they are same level, it is also not an honour. To give honour, the Philippines flag should fly with more prominence. The status of prominence depends on various situation could be bigger flag, higher, in the middle, or on the right

              The question to ask of the photo is the view from the stern or the bow (rear or front) to know whether the Phil flag is left or right.

              Then again, Chinese script is top to down, not left to right, so what the heck is prominence to them I don’t know.

              • Sup says:

                I think it is discrimination…When the Vietnam, Russian and US navy ships were in the PH Sarah did not go there…….

              • Bill In Oz says:

                From memory the British navy gives more ‘priority’ to the front right flag as seen by the captain from the bridge of his ship. In that event the Philippines flag has prominence.

                As for which flag is lower, or if they are actually level I think that needs to be clarified by other photos.

            • karlgarcia says:

              From another angle.

      • sonny says:

        Just recently came across this Air Force One article.

        This ‘revelation’ on POTUS’s physical movements makes me wish that he visits the PH in this manner, if only to encourage restraint in our president’s “candidness.”

        http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/05/02/the-presidents-secret-air-force-215091

  11. karlgarcia says:

    We already know this,but with our expereince with Arroyo and ERAP, SC appointments are good investments.

    http://www.philstar.com/opinion/2016/12/29/1657695/duterte-appoint-12-sc-members

  12. Yvonne says:

    DID ‘GAVA GIVES’ BECOME A PURVEYOR OF FAKE NEWS
    WHEN IT VIOLATED ITS OWN INTERNAL CONTROLS

    AND DID JIMMY BONDOC & COMPANY BECOME ENABLERS OF FAKE NEWS
    FOR NOT CORRECTING THE APPARENT FALSEHOODS IN ‘GAVA GIVES’

    Much has been written about the politically motivated crowd-funding activity initiated by Jimmy Bondoc and the D.A.V.A.O. Movement in support of President Duterte and in protest against Vice-President Leni Robredo.

    While the initiators of the crowd-funding were quick to claim success, pointing to the $47,479.06 raised from 1,122 givers (donors) from several countries including the Philippines, U.S., Canada, Japan, from Europe and Middle East, etc., no one has seriously questioned the veracity and accuracy of the information provided by Gava Gives in its web site.

    Is the information provided by Jimmy Bondoc and company, and by Gava Gives, factual or is it questionable harboring on fake news?

    A simple analysis of the data and comments shown in its web site seems to indicate that Gava Gives becomes a purveyor of fake news when it did not implement its own Terms and Conditions in the conduct of its political crowd-funding activity.

    Under Gava Gives’ Terms and Conditions, Section 9.1.3 of its conduct and general rules, it is prohibited to “impersonate any person or entity, including, but not limited to, a Company representative, forum leader, or falsely state or otherwise misrepresent your affiliation with a person or entity.”

    It is very obvious from the list of givers that many of the givers impersonate other persons with the intent to mislead the real identity of the givers, and to demean or harass those they impersonate. Yet Gava Gives not only did not correct the fake information but also retained the false information in its web site. And Jimmy Bondoc did not take action to correct, or deny,the false information.

    For examples, the following alleged “givers” (donors) are clearly impersonating other persons and their absurd comments leave no doubt as to the persons they are impersonating:

    1. Leni Robredo, $10, March 22, 2017, “Gusto ko nang ma-impeach! #impeachmenow”

    2. Leni Robredo, $10, March 21, 2017, “Even I support this!”

    3. Jessie Robredo, $20, March 22, 2017, “Bwisit na asawa ko yan! Patalsikin nyo na at miss ko na sya ditto sa impyerno!”

    4. Dalisay Robredo, $10, March 22, 2017, “Thank you Jesse Myluv”

    5. Aquino Iii Benigno Simeon, $10, March 22, 2017, “Papasagasa ako sa tren pag naimpeach si Leni. Totohanan na to”

    6. Laila De Lima, $10, March 22, 2017, “#impeachleni”

    7. Jaybee Sebastian, $10, March 22, 2017,”#impeachleni at sana ipakulong na ito si mam para may kasama at di malungkot ang loves kong c delima sa kulungan”

    8. L.n. Lewis of Nyc, USA, $10, March 24, 2017, “Ano yang pinagkakalat ni Thinking Pinoy/RJ Nieto na kuripot ako? Ayan binawasan ko na ang $600 million ko. $599,999,990 na lang tuloy pero ko. Wait, lalagnatin ako ata ako at naghyhyperventilate na dahil nabawasan yung milyones ko.”

    9. Sonny Trillanes, $10, March 24, 2017, “Pa as if lang na anti ako pero Du30 pa rin mga ulol! Eto lang muna, d pa nabigay ang cheque galing sa….alam na this!”

    10. Emilio Aquinaldo, $20, March 23, 2017, “karen davila and mainstream media kami ang totoong emilio aguinaldo report this pls!”

    11. Jim Paredes (alternate Universe), $10, March 23, 2017, “Pasensyahan nyo na doppleganger ko. In my timeline, I don’t own EDSA and I support President Duterte.”

    The above impersonation is clearly in violation of its Terms and Conditions, yet Gava Gives made no effort to correct the false information, or otherwise remove the falsehoods from its website.

    Similarly, under its Terms of Conditions, Section 9.1.1, it is prohibited and is against its Conduct and General Rules, to “upload, post, email, transmit or otherwise make available any information, products or services, that are unlawful, harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, tortuous, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, libelous, invasive of another’s privacy, hateful, or racially, ethnically or otherwise objectionable”.

    Yet, the following examples of comments that are clearly threatening, abusive, harassing, and defamatory were uploaded and posted in Gava Gives web site:

    1. Jessie Robredo, $20, March 22, 2017, “Bwisit na asawa ko yan! Patalsikin nyo na at miss ko na sya ditto sa impyerno!”

    2. San Pedro, $10, March 24, 2017, “paalisin na yang leni robredo kasi hinahanap na sya ni harry…harry ng kadiliman”

    3. Jaybee Sebastian, $10, March 22, 2017,”#impeachleni at sana ipakulong na ito si mam para may kasama at di malungkot ang loves kong c delima sa kulungan”

    4. Gava Angel, $10.20, March 23, 2017, “Leni itapon sa bunganga ng bulkang Mayon”

    5. Jen Pie, $15, March 23, 2017, “Impeach the delusional, un-elected VP Leni”

    6. Gava Angel, $20, March 22, 2017, “Para sa tunay na Pagbabago, alisin ang traidor at taksil sa Inang Bayan! Impeach fake VP, Leni Robredo!”

    Did Gava Gives turn a blind eye on the violations to its Terms and Conditions, and allowed the spread of false news, because it gets a cut from the donations? Certainly, there is a financial incentive for GavaGives to do just like that.

    Ann Cuisia-Lindayag, Gava Gives CEO, admitted that its crowd-funding’s activities, for Jimmy Bondoc and the D.A.V.A.O. Movement, is political in nature; and it is the only political crowd-funding it has done to date. In venturing into a political crowd-funding, Gava Gives has the responsibility to determine that all donations came from “givers’ who are Filipino citizens, or at least dual-Filipino citizens, because foreigners are not supposed to give financial donations for partisan political activities.

    Did Gava Gives ensure that none of the political “givers” or donors are foreign citizens?

    Or, was Gava Gives used by someone for money laundering?

    • Pretty powerful recitation, Yvonne. I would also note that the AFP is starting to come down hard on military people who are issuing fake news, in the guise of “defending the state”.

    • Pretty powerful recitation, Yvonne. I guess truth is an enemy of the people who run this particular state at this time. This all runs in parallel with Trump’s attack on media, trying to shape the message. Of course, it backfires and the rage against him is getting intense. We don’t see the same rage here, the kind people would ordinarily exhibit when they are played for fools.

      But here, the people are playing the fool for themselves, so perhaps they don’t recognize it for what it is.

      I would also note that the AFP is starting to come down hard on military people who are issuing fake news in the guise of “defending the state”. At least one institution here is striving to maintain old-school integrity.

  13. NHerrera says:

    Irineo,

    I will be glad to get a brief note from you on the May 7 French Election in relation to Europe, especially the important part Germany plays in the EU.

    http://opinion.inquirer.net/103613/french-election-europes-future#ixzz4fs8LoLBP

    For, far as PH is from Europe, some “earthquake” waves may be felt here, I presume, if Le Pen gets elected; not that everything will be hunky-dory if Macron wins from my limited readings.

  14. Anton says:

    Marcos, then Duterte? You skipped several decades.

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