Drug War deaths – the insult after the injury

By Chemrock

Media says bodies from the drug war in Philippines are piling up in funeral parlours and if anyone say this is fake news, this photo tells a thousand stories. It’s from a UK media. Someone should tell Senator Cayetano that foreign media has all along been present in Philippines, there is no need to invite them to the land to observe his version of what is going in the country.

I apologise for displaying this photo here. Honestly, I struggled with all three photos, but I let them through for the shock value to drive my message home. The abhorrent disrespect for the dead makes even the most docile of us wanting to scream out at someone of responsibility. These are bodies which have been embalmed and waiting for release to relatives. They are piled naked or with scant clothings on top of each other.

The bodies of those shot in the drug war do not go to government hospitals for post mortem. All forensic evidence lie conclusively with the Police team despatched to the scene. Funeral parlours called by the local police retrieve the dead bodies direct from crime scenes to their mortuary. These bone collectors pay the police for the business and the cost is passed on to families of the dead. The result is higher service fees which many families cannot afford, leaving many bodies unclaimed.

Death care service

The death care service industry is something that really needs to be modernised. The Philippines Mortuary Association wants the government to lift the standards and make the cost of funeral services more affordable to the poor. The Legislative prioritises the bills for death penalty and lowering of age of criminal accountability instead of other more important matters such as that concerning the sanitary state of the environment. It is left to the PMA to advocate for a law to properly define the mortuary industry and its function in the community.

For a country that loves implementing laws, it is so strange that there is no enacting legislation on the business of funeral services. The technical part of enbalming is guided by an Administrative Order from the Dept of Health (I think dated 2010) and the physical establishment is governed by Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board. It is run by a bunch of attorneys, not medical professionals. The 1999 Rules and Regulations pertaining to storage of cadavars read :

“The cadavers shall be contained in tanks divided into compartments. Each compartment must have the following dimensions: length of 2,50 meters, width of 1.50 meters and a depth of 2.50 meters. Every compartment shall be provided with a drain pipe leading into a separate compartment shall be provided with a drain pipe leading into a separate waste water treatment facility from the septic tank. The cover of each compartment shall be provided with tight fitting lids.”

Quite clearly the funeral parlour where the photo on the right was taken, as well as the one above, fall short of standards. So are several others we have seen in the media. With ineffective monitory oversight, it is left to the public to literally sense out monstrous lapse of industry regulations. This happened in Sept 2016 in Quezon City when residents near Henry’ Memorial Services were alerted by the horrendous stench of death. Authorities discovered 100 corpses in various stages of decomposition strewned all over its premises. It was a scene straight out of a horror movie. Various other funeral parlours with an overflow of unclaimed bodies from the drug war had outsourced the storage of cadavars to Henry’s who must have an ear on the cash register and said ‘keep them coming’.

Mass burial

In life these people were denied due process and killed mercilessly. In death they were shown absolute disrespect. Nothing could top the distardly way the bodies are stored in funeral parlours, one would have thought. Wrong. After a certain time, unclaimed bodies in funeral parlours are disposed off via mass burials. The more civilised world observes certain standards when it comes to mass burials. Look at this photo of a recent mass burial at Quexon City and form your own opinion — was some desecration going on? Indeed, were some laws breached?

Under the Geneva conference, parties to the conflict must ensure that the enemy dead as well as deceased internees, be buried in individual graves unless unavoidable circumstances require the use of collective graves.

NATO Standardization Agreement 2070 further stressed the need to give individual burials and further set the requirements for group and trench burials :

“In the case of trench and group burials a marker and list in a suitable container endorsed accordingly is to be placed at each end of the grave and the distance of the remains from the marker is to be shown against the relevant entry in the list.
In group burials, the number of bodies buried must be recorded, with the names of the known but unidentifiable dead listed.”

The standards are set not only to accord the greatest respect to the dead, but also for the preservation of criminal evidence. Mass grave sites and their contents are important for the invaluable information required at a future time when prosecution for criminal and human rights violations becomes possible.

There will be arguments that Geneva Convention relates to international and internal state conflicts. Well, they call it a Drug War did’nt they?

For non-conflict situations, specifically natural disasters, the International Committee of the  Red Cross has established standards for burials. These include :
– Storage in refregerated facilities.
– Each body or body part should be kept in a body bag or wrapped in a sheet before storage.
– Bodies are identified by matching information from the deceased (physical features, clothes, etc.) with information from individuals who are missing or presumed dead. Visual recognition of cadavers or their photographs by acquaintances of the deceased, forensic identification (autopsies, fingerprinting, dental examinations, DNA)

In stark contrast, the mass burial at Quezon city in the photo above was for 250 deceased in 201 garbage bags, dumped unceremoniously on top of each other in a pit 15m by 15m by 7 feet deep. Henry’s Memorial Svc was operating with no refrigeration, no permit and no registration. There were zero records, zero identification.

Treatment of prisoners and mass burials, both in conflict zones and during natural disasters, are within the armbit of International Humanitarian Laws in which the International Committee of the Red Cross play a major roll. To fulfil its task of disseminating IHL, the ICRC has delegates around the world teaching armed and security forces, and national disaster agencies, the rules and the standards. Yet, with monstrous shortcomings brought up by the media, Senator Dick Gordon, who chairs the Philippines Red Cross, has remained incredulously silent in a conspicuous betrayal of the responsibilities of the office.

“Show me the manner in which a nation cares for its dead and I will measure with mathematical exactness the tender mercies of its people, their respect for the laws of the land, and their loyalty to high ideals.” ………….. Sir William Ewart Gladstone

A very apt but damning commentary for the country. I like to see Cayetano defend this.



91 Responses to “Drug War deaths – the insult after the injury”
  1. Vicara says:

    dding insult to injury to insult is that official crime-scene investigation costs are charged to the families of those killed by summary execution in this “drug war.” A number of those killed were in fact their respective families’ primary breadwinner. So now the family has to pay for the costs of officially determining, for the benefit of PNP records, that their breadwinner was, in fact, killed by a bullet. By the PNP.

    The bodies of those killed in Tokhang operations can be processed only by PNP-accredited funeral parlors, who charge inordinate amounts. (And yet make a mess of “processing,” as Chemrock reveals in this article.) Some of those funeral parlors are reportedly owned by ex-PNP, or reportedly get kickbacks from the PNP. Who reportedly get financial rewards from the top of officialdom, for each kill they bring in. Some people are making a whole lot of money from all this killing. Can’t pay up? Then lose your family member’s poor, murdered body to an unmarked mass grave in a trash-filled lot.

    A “drug war” is an unwinnable war. After 23 years under Duterte, drugs are still readily found in Davao, say people there. So what is all this killing for, really?

    • chemrock says:

      Nowhere in the world does a family of a homicide victim need to pay for police processing cost. In this drug war, the police shoots a man dead and the family pays for everything – forensic services cost, the execution teams cost which includes meals sometimes, down to the cost of bullets used to kill the victim. SHAME SHAME SHAME. (I was writing only on the insults to the dead. For insults to the family, there are much more to cover).

      I avoided using the word accreditation because that implies an association based on quality, pricing, services etc. As you said, it’s far from that. It’s just unofficial police side line, which provides further motivation to be trigger happy.

      • Vicara says:

        Yes, you are right–it’s at ground level that families are told that the dead victim’ body has to be taken and claimed from a particular funeral parlor.

        • popoy says:

          I just read this news from PhilStar and copied the first few paragraphs.

          Duterte orders release of 14 convicted communists
          By Alexis Romero (philstar.com) | Updated May 14, 2017 – 8:30am
          14 81 googleplus0

          MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the release of 14 convicted communists as he renewed his commitment to forge a peace settlement with the rebels.
          Duterte said while the government and the communist rebels had disagreements, he cannot afford to wage a war against his fellow Filipinos.

          “I just released 14 prisoners from Bilibid, they are communists who have been convicted” the president told about a thousand Filipinos in Hong Kong Saturday.
          “Sometimes there is irritation and exchange of words. But I’m a president for peace. I cannot be a wartime president. I cannot afford to fight with anybody especially to wage war against my people,” he added.

          Duterte did not elaborate on the communists who were freed from prison. The National Democratic Front, which represents the communists in the peace talks, have been demanding the release of their comrades whom they claim to be political prisoners.

          • chemrock says:

            Can a president simply order a release of convicts? Surely it’s got to be via a legal process of amnesty should’nt it?

            • popoy says:

              the other point which the news seems to suggest is CONTRADICTIONS embedded in the exercise of leadership. PNoy’s leadership choose not to make war with his people. And what happened? Duterte choose to make war with illegal Drugs people and made war with the weakest poor. He choose not to make war with his people for reasons of peace so he pardons convicted felons who at all cost will overthrow the government. Are murders and thievery committed for political beliefs and in acts of terrorism and rebellion considered sacrosanct political crimes? that’s the other point of posting : leaders should be aware of the underlying contradictions of their words and actions. .

  2. We trust that Cayetano presentation/defense is taken as only one version of the ugly truth. In addition to the required disposal procedure of bodies, there still are the badly needed forensic documentations that are legally and humanely required. Oh, and also all the horrifying photographs that are anything but fake news. Can we hope this inquiry would follow?

  3. Zen says:

    Still, the rating of the president is up and nobody seems to care why except for people like you who writes this reality in black and white. Thank you for this write up and would like to share this in my timeline. It is on point, just long enough for easy reading for my otherwise ‘pretend deaf and blind’ friends in social media who are open supporters of this drug war. I have seen those photos in foreign news items and it is so abhorrent, not only as a health and sanitation practice, as police policy and procedures, respect for the dead tradition in our country, but also on its implication and effect toward common decency and moral values of the people.

  4. edgar lores says:


    Thank you for showing these photos, and thank you, JoeAm, for publishing.

    We have to see these atrocities to bear witness to what is happening.

    Some months ago, I forced myself to watch the beheading of an Abu Sayyaf hostage. The images stayed with me for many days, and I get flashes of them now and then.

    In this forum, we talk here of fascism, federalism, the economy, even AlDub, and much more. And we separate the chaff from the grain and discuss many fine points.

    But I was thinking, as I was debating fascism recently, that we are discussing things academically, far removed from the obscene reality on the ground. And I thought it really does not matter what we call the slaughter of drug personalities, the loss of human rights, the freeing of plunderers, the incivility, the misogyny, and the persecution of critics of the administration.

    I thought discussing these matters without doing anything, without even a murmur of protest, was an obscenity in itself. What matters is that we realize what is happening and that we stop it.

    But then I also thought that we have to give these dire events and inhumanities a name… because naming allows us to capture and encapsulate them in a word or term. In so doing, we are able to identify, recognize, and manipulate the named reality.

    And if we do not do so, we will be overwhelmed by the alternate reality that many, who are working furiously and assiduously, would foist on us.

    A term has so much power. Kill. Dilawan. Putang ina. Duterismo.

    In the time of the Marcos martial law, there was no Internet, no social media, no blog sites. So history was not recorded well. And look what happened: history has come back to haunt us.

    In this time of Duterismo, let history be recorded faithfully. So that the dead will not be forgotten. So that this nation will remember how it was in the Time of Killing.

    Let these web pages reveal the present. And let them bear witness for the future.

    • chemrock says:

      Edgar, I fully agree.
      “The Time of the Killing” seems a good name to start. It’s the naming of an epoch. I imagine 50 years later, after the Antartic and Artic Poles have melted and flooded the land, and 80% of modernity has been swept away, including our internet enabling infras, and what’s left of the inhabitants on the archipelago scavage in the mountains and forests, they gather under the moonlit nights around campfires,and the elders narrate to the young what happened in the Time of the Killings.

      I hope someone out there remembers my article.

  5. Epis Buhay says:

    It’s bad enough to be poor and hungry all the time, it’s worse to live in fear day and night expecting to be shot anytime for anything.

  6. Again, you have published an article that made us look unto ourselves, chemrock.

    You are one brutal man, brutally frank, but I thank you. This is a trite saying, but I will say it again, truth hurts, but it has to be said. Another one, the truth will set as free, from the bible.

    I posted this in response to LCpl_X (@LCpl_X).

    This comment made me pause and sit up straighter as bitter realization sinks in. 16 million Filipinos (including members of INC, JIL, Quiboloy church and let’s be realistic, millions of Catholics who are still posting Bible quotes and love of God) did choose a killer, until now they are rabidly defending this extra judicial executions. There is truly blood of their countrymen on their hands. The truth hurts, but there it is.

    The 60% who did not vote for Du30 are the majority, If they would unite and stand up to be heard, to raise their voice and oppose this travesty of justice that is being done to our helpless countrymen, then there is still hope. When will be the tipping point, when? I hope it comes soon before it is too late.

    LCpl_X (@LCpl_X) commented on TSOH: the Philippines
    May 12, 2017 at 8:07 am

    DU30 was very explicit about what he intended to do, hence no trickery involved; the choice was simple 1) vote for a killer; or 2) vote for a non-killer.

    And Filipinos at 40% voted for 1).

    The choice was a simple one. To kill or not to kill.

    • Mary,

      Bill and josephivo I think have it down, when read conjunctly, it’s due to overpopulation and dehumanization (I’m panning out further and saying it’s only a small example, symptom, of a bigger problem above).

      “The 60% who did not vote for Du30 are the majority, If they would unite and stand up to be heard, to raise their voice and oppose this travesty of justice that is being done to our helpless countrymen, then there is still hope. When will be the tipping point, when?”

      I don’t think it’s coming anytime soon, especially with that 80% approval.

      Mary, I don’t know if you’ve met shabu addicts (or even know some), they are like zombies (with no brains), so if most of those in that 60% (whoever they voted for) have met shabu addicts, known some, maybe family members were one, i think ip is correct here:


      Mary, also maybe that 60% is minuscule if you also factor in those who didn’t vote (ie. low voter turn out) , they would mostly be poor, uneducated, hence more exposure to shabu , or are the addicts themselves, or the victims, either way I think they’d have de-humanize way before the Presidential election, thanks in part to over-population (ie., being personally affected by shabu, self dehumanization included)

      • chemrock says:

        Duterte recently asked the Agnes Callamard from UN CHR lady to go honeymoon with that black man. He was referring to neuroscientist Prof Carl Hart. The prof was here in Manila a few days back for a conference where he spoke on drugs. His anti drug war utterances earned him death threats and he fled Manila. Prof Hart said he did extensive drug research for decades and he said it’s not true that shabu kills the brain.

        • chemp,

          Now I’m no doctor, but any drug that precipitates addiction changes the brain (and I don’t mean positively, even noo-tropics which is all the rage now in Silicon Valley). Addiction itself is brain changing, never mind drugs (illicit or otherwise), but even just behavior , ie. adrenaline junkies (most of military PTSD stems from inability to control adrenaline dependence).

          Let me read up on this Carl Hart fella, but here’s some quick Googling on meth and brain effects,

          Now over here, there’s some correlation between mental illness and meth use, but it’s the chicken vs. the egg scenario , and (again i’m no doctor) meth users are crazier, compared to cocaine or heroin users/abusers… the only crazier ones are PCP, LSD, and/or synthetic drug users , these don’t even need the process of addiction, one use and your brain’s disintegrate.

          Natural drugs IMHO is fine like marijuana, tobacco, alcohol, etc. so long as untainted, but abuse will still render permanent affects on the brain.

          Though I guess from a non-medical , but moral argument, one’s gotta deny the brain damage aspect to elevate the possibility of rehab, let me see if there’s any stat on meth users making a clean living after… hence my question on the current blog, re the Reys of the Philippines.

          • Found it. I think this is what he presented over there, chemp: http://www.nature.com/npp/journal/v37/n3/full/npp2011276a.html

            I’m not qualified to speak on the science within that study, but his conclusion or implications was curious, re crack cocaine and rolling back penalties for it recently over here.

            So here’s a bit on that, crack and cocaine are the same thing, the only difference is that cocaine (in powder form is generally straight from the source, though it’ll get cut up and mixed with other substance depending on who you buy it from); crack cocaine on the other hand will generally be cut up and mixed, then cooked as paste, hardened, then cracked for distribution (hence the name) its prevalent in the black community because its cheaper and more watered down version of cocaine—- the smoking, as opposed to inhaling, i think also contributes.

            The violence associated with the crack epidemic was more on the fact that crack was prevalent in the black community, where there was less hierarchy in its supply chain, powder cocaine was handled by mainly Mexican gangs (at least in California), and they had a more ordered supply chain, more top-down hierarchy, less chaos.

            Therein lies the stiffer penalties associated with crack cocaine, the only difference in the substance was how it was cut up and mixed (many times with more harmful substances, just to stretch the product, ie. sell more units). The science of the two substance, because they are the same thing, would be similar sans the mixed substances used which will vary from seller to seller.

            Now I don’t know if any of you guys watched “Breaking Bad”, but there’s essentially only one way to cook meth. And it is different from cocaine.

            I’ll be honest , my eyes glazed over scanning that scientific study (maybe NH or sonny, or edgar will want to take a whack), but his argument is that meth isn’t that bad (like crack cocaine, in comparison to powdered cocaine), then he backs it up with digital images of the brain. Now i’m pretty sure that cognitive science , or all this nuero stuff is still in its infancy especially with its used of digital imagery.

            I’d feel better with actual studies, using cognitive tests, than just imagery, and long term studies. I know a couple of people who were crack addicts and now make a living talking to cops and criminals about their experiences, and there are long term “deficiencies” just by talking to them and interacting with them, they themselves know of the obvious ones, like lack of short term memory, memory lost, temper tantrums, IMHO if they didn’t have this sweet gig (as “consultants”), they’d be hard press for regular employment in the office setting or field or the factory. But that’s all anecdotal, and about crack, not meth.

            Like I said, meth is just one level off/below of PCP, LSD, synthetics… crack, and cocaine in general is one step/level below meth, and brain impairment is already obvious with crack.

            Dr. Hart IMHO also has a bias, re drug use and penalties, so there’s political component to his research. Scientifically, can be over-looked, but could be why he ended up in the Philippines also, ie. science as protest type thing (nothing wrong with that, just an important component to add).

        • Here’s the actual talk, Dr. Carl Hart in the Philippines:

          Reminds me of this old discussion of ours, https://joeam.com/2015/04/27/open-discussion-our-philippines/#comment-120953

          His findings just doesn’t reflect what I’ve seen, over here, over there, and in other 3rd world countries, re addiction and epidemics (and his “small” percentage claim)… though i agree with his analogy of vehicular/pedestrian or veh/veh accidents as epidemic (which kills around 40,000, more injuries, every year over here), and how we view that particular epidemic—- like I said before i’m more terrified of dying in a car accident than anything else over here.

          His “attractive alternatives” studies, is problematic too, since he’s dealing with non-addicted subjects or past abusers. there’s a disconnect in his presentation (i’m thinking the science is spot on now, by the way, chemp after watching this video and concede my “kills the brain” description above 😦 ) —- let me think about this. But there’s a flaw in his perspective, that just doesn’t jibe with the criminal reality surrounding this epidemic (both here and there).

          And IMHO it’s somewhere between his “attractive alternatives” and our “slow suicides” (re miserable rats vs. happy rats study).


    • josephivo’s de-humanization would be visual , with Bill’s over-population, Filipinos would have been seeing this live (for a good decade now) ,

      • chemp,

        For the sake of this post, i’ve conceded my “meth kills brains” , and have taken Dr. Hart’s shift in focus from brain chemistry to behavioural principles, ie. it’s not that meth is frying addicts/users brain, but simply complex human behaviour —- sarcasm/ So eating your buddy’s face, or your girlfriend’s intestines clean, sticking your child in a oven or microwaving your new born is just “complex” human behaviour.

        I’m incredulous still but let’s take his digital imagery at face value and accept that there’s no evidence of brain cell destruction, and if there is, that there’s also evidence of regeneration—- though Hart’s conceded that all this digital images still needs to coincide with actual behaviour, to which he’s acknowledge that unless scientists have more data on this, pretty difficult to affirm, but to his credit Hart’s has rendered previous brain imagery (supporting my “meth kills brains”) suspect.

        I’ve watched about 5 of his youtube videos (plus the one above in the Philippines) and read about the same amount of reviews on his book—- I’ve not found detailed criticism of his work though, below’s from the Boston Globe,

        So in his talks and i guess his book, he relies heavily on his experience as a black kid growing up in the bad part of town in Miami, then his science, having pursued higher education after a stint in the Air Force, moving to NY eventually.

        In essence he’s doing sociology with his neuro-science.

        • So aside from Hart’s brain images studies, comparing and contrasting and concluding there’s just not enough to conclude these brain digital imagery “prove” brain pathology. I’ve been relying on these “studies” having never actually studied it as “proof” of drugs (legal and illegal) effect on the human brain. Hart’s rendered it suspect and my mind’s a bit blown now (thanks to chemp for bringing this up).

          that’s for the digital brain imagery stuff. His other experiments though is dubious at best.

          Hart consistently also points out to this 70s “Rat Park” experiment (in his youtube videos), and how he and his colleagues have replicated this study in humans. Essentially by giving drug addicts a choice in a clinical setting, between the drug , meth/crack/heroin , and money, 5-20 dollars. And consistently addicts choose money over drugs. Conclusion “alternative reinforcers” work and there’s no such thing as addiction.

          Let’s assume that his experiment were of actual addicts (i personally don’t see addicts going to a university campus, volunteering for this… if you’re not familiar with these psych experiments, they put out an ad, asking for depressed, or over-sexed, or whatever candidates, in this case addicts, and pretty much everyone hard up for cash at that moment will be that candidate for the experiment), but lets say they are actual addicts,

          the big question then is…

          At which point do addicts make rational decisions, ie. money over drugs, enough is enough, tomorrows another day, be safe, etc. hard to tell really (since they are consistently bad decision makers in general), but we can easily surmise at which point they make all sorts of bad decisions whether consciously or not, and its when they are fiending for more. You get an actual addict, who’s coming down, & now is craving for a high, I guarantee, given the choice between a $20 bill and an instant hit of meth, crack, heroin… they’d reach for their choice of drug first, or all three—- that’s the nature of addiction (which Hart seems to just fluff over).

          So timing’s everything, when they are fiending. Conversely, this is also the time when addicts commit crimes, do stupid things that endanger not just themselves but the public (this where females will screw another guy or more just to get a hit); they’ll also do more stupid stuff when high (though not so much heroin addicts, they’ll just hole up somewhere and nod). Hart gives us a very clinical approach only, no mentioning of timing at all, when that’s the point of addiction.

      • This was someone’s academic review I found online, I just screen shot the sociology part of Dr. Hart’s premise,

        • So I totally understand the racism issue re penalties for use and possession of illicit drugs. I do agree with him that lopsided enforcement have resulted in not just 1, but 2 to 3 generations of Blacks negatively affected by family and community disintegration.

          I also agree with him that the spectrum between one-time or casual user to full-on addiction is very nuanced.

          I’m sure Joe would agree, in downtown Los Angeles, from the skyscrapers you look down past Broadway down to skid row, that is epicenter of the LA area’s drug trade…

          but what most people don’t get is that also from skid row, down in the gutters, looking up to the sky scrapers, now with fancy condos too (gentrification) sellers in the gutters know all too well that the drug trade is also in full effect up there—- where meth and crack (and heroin) are sold down the streets, it’s powdered coke and high grade heroin changing hands up above.

          In San Fran it used to be sky scrapers looking down south of Market, but thanks to Silicon Valley siege south of Market, you’d have to look across the bay to Oakland (gentrification). Same dynamics , from casual use to full addiction, from poor to rich partaking in drugs. Las Vegas it’s downtown and the strip, then east and west.

          So where I generally agree with Hart’s personal biases on this (ie. addiction and racism), like I’ve said prior it’s not just an urban problem anymore, since Mexican cartels and central American gangs in conjunction with other gangs have focused precisely outside the cities , there are more and more Whites using meth and recently heroin—- crack is still generally used by Blacks in urban settings.

          I guess, Hart would shift to it being a class issue on top of racism, which would make sense, but these new addicts are typically white upper class or middle class, from otherwise good homes, lump in also Hollywood actors into coke and heroin.

          This strikes to his “alternative reinforcers” angle , if most of these new addicts outside the city are actually well-off, meaning they have more than their share of “alternative reinforcers” , what gives?

          I’ll focus on addiction and Hart’s studies (none neuro-science based, the psychological ones) next… to be cont’d >>>>>>>>>>>>>

          • chemrock says:

            You are well-read on this subject. Prof Hart notwithstanding, I believe, just gut feel, that obviously something happens to the brain if continuous consumption of drugs, heck even panadols, take place. The science has not concluded on the matter yet.

            No matter the evils of drugs, I’m sure we are all agreed the approach to an eradication of a social ill cannot be by means of that’s outside established law.

          • karlgarcia says:

            Permanent brain Damage does not mean no rehab.
            Overcrowding mentioned by Bill is definitely a factor, rather than blame families with a dozen or more members, Gov must continue to implement reproductive health, (fight all those TROs) , social benefits like expanded 4ps,education, job creation, land aquisition for more jail and rehab, more manpower iin jails and rehabs.

            • chemp, karl…

              Yeah, I agree there’s two components to Hart’s advocacy, the science (in digital imaging and psychology, though that’s more like social science, along with sociology); and his seeming push for legalization—- now as a libertarian i’m all too familiar with this view, ie. legalize like alcohol and now marijuana,ie. one’s right to enjoy or destroy himself is one’s business, so long as it doesn’t affect my own quest for happiness.

              The thing is it does affect me / us (and others who aren’t partaking in these drugs). Hart seems also (just watching his youtubes and write ups online) to embody this Ivory Tower approach to the realities of addiction, ie. “there’s just no data to support”, hence drugs don’t affect the brain. In one of the videos Hart states that he’d rather have people take meth and/or heroin, instead of marijuana, because meth=Adderall; heroin=Oxycontin , since there’s a pharma equivalent it must be safer.

              So DU30’s justification that these addicts are zombies (hence a green light to kill) is one end of the spectrum; but Hart is on the other end with his espousing of his view that drug doesn’t do any harm, and that it is simply a matter of “alternative reinforcers”. I agree with you guys that the truth is somewhere in the middle—– but this whole notion of “alternative reinforcers” , even with suburban and small town addicts, White, upper to middle class, with all these “alternative reinforcers” available to them,

              how is a 3rd world country like the Philippines provide these meth users with “alternative reinforcers”? karl, is rehab really viable there? shouldn’t there be a triage of priorities, how about the poor kids who aren’t taking drugs, shouldn’t they instead regale with funds/support, instead of these drug addicts? Hart seems to view this issue with rosy coloured glasses, from academia, not taking into account the crimes committed related to drug use, and the criminal enterprise that develops surrounding drug use in general. Meth problem doesn’t happen in a vacuum. I wonder if Dr. Hart would consider DU30 ‘s threat of death also an “alternative reinforcer”, ie. like that Rey fella ‘s article I posted on the other blog.

              I guess it’s back to idealist vs. realist approach, and I’m more familiar with realist approaches to issues and problems, ie. you cannot wish your way out of a problem.

              ps~ his Psychological questionaire/study also seem very unrealistic, I’ll post more on that.

              • karlgarcia says:

                We just don’t wish, we say this can work if yatta yatta blah blah.
                Not yet real but very possible through political will.

                Rehab is possible if there are more land for rehab centers, more people to man the rehab centers, and more access tor visitors.
                The same for prisons.
                You have first argued that we do not have too many lawyers, we do , but we lack prosecutors and public defendants and judges and court rooms.

              • karl,

                It just seems like so much effort to reward a negative, at the expense of supporting the positive—- ie. kids, young adults, actually staying out of that whole scene, doing well, working hard, staying away from drugs, entrepreneurs, making a positive contribution to society.

                Why invest in rehab centers and prisons, when you can invest in people actually doing good for the community? I’m saying this because here in California, liberal, Democrat controlled, there seems to be a race to fund the lowest denominator,

                we’re lucky since we have Silicon Valley, Hollywood, and still the bulk of America’s top notch schools. We can afford to essentially waste money, on social experiments like welfare (where people use tax payer money to buy beer, drugs, luxurious items), section 8 (housing those in welfare within well off neighborhoods, thus driving home prices down), and all kinds of half-way houses, dialysis centers for profit , etc. etc.

                If you have one knuckle head addict and a smart poor kid attempting the impossible, who would you rather give your limited amount of money to? Do you guys really have the luxury to play social experiments like us?

              • karlgarcia says:

                Detinitely no luxury yet, but the triage situation where you take care of those you can still save is exactly what you wil be doing by rehab, and at the same time you still take care of the others. No luxury, but it is something we can afford.

              • chemrock says:

                Rehab alone can never solve drug addiction problems. What an addict needs, after rehab, is a complete change of environment, plus friends and relatives that surround him and give support. It’s tough. Everbody has their own problems right? That’s precisely why rehabilitating addicts is almost near impossible. The few who got that close support manage to claw out.

                I have a personal experience of someone close to me who thankfully got out. I saw the downward spiral, the resistance to change, the rejection of help offered (because it came with conditions). The addict can claw out when he regains self-esteem, when he sees self-worth, when he sees hope – meaning opportunities are opened to him. Today he is managing a small business. He had this chance because relatives and friends never abandon him.

                Lance narration depicts families, hard pressed for survival,had no choice but to abandon the addict in the house to his own ways. In this circumstance, the addict has no chance.


                On the use of funds — throwing scarce resources into maintaining support services for addicts, vs spending on other pressing needs.

                It’s a damn tough call. Liken to throwing good money on bad money somewhat. I do see the dread of ultra-liberalists pouring scarce resources into the lowest denominator and it seems the chasm can never be plugged. Bleeding heart dominated policies have driven many states to the financial brink. However, we need to see drug addiction as a social problem, so a balanced approach is required. For is one to abandon an ultruistic child and put all money onto his brother who is doing great in school? I have no answer how the matter should be approached. Perhaps a sort of ‘3 counts and you’re out’ policy can be tried.

                The drug menace is best approached by some proactive programs. This drug war is a total reactive program, which seems a recurring problem in Philippines. Lack of vision in omnipresent. Identify the most vulnerable and have some social programs that reach out to them first, before the drugs get to them. Especially the very young, the youths. Many studies have should the young get drifted into drugs due to lack of direction in their lives. These lowest denominators, especially in Philippines, just drift along all their waking hours. There is absolutely nothing to do. Most will end up with drugs or other crimes. In many cities the world over, the police tried crime/drug prevention by some outreach programs which are having positive outcomes. Over here, the police are too busy, or they can’t be trusted with the kids.

              • karlgarcia says:

                Yes not by rehab alone, I mentioned access to rehab wnd prisons becauae if tou build a mega rehab and prison where no one can visit, then the support which you also mentioned would also be absent.

                Environment can change too, all our discussions are inter-related, infra, transpo, social security, peace and order, geopolitics,pooitical economy, the environment (literally),name it, it all leads to a better environment for everyone.

  7. NHerrera says:

    Duterte: War on Illegal drugs + Unveiled Exhortation to be Merciless >> Administration Officials, PNP >> Consequent Horrific Death and After-Death descriptions as portrayed in this blog and Various Other Reports by Human Rights Watch, etc >> Immeasurable Pain and Economic Cost borne by the relatives of those dead.

    Will it change the inhumanity of the picture if Peter Lim is among those treated with disrespect and insult. NO, but it would give a measure of non-discrimination.

    • Sad but true, sir NH. Discrimination against the poor who are using and for some, peddling shabu, defined as the poor men’s cocaine to finance their addiction (and sometimes their family’s needs). A joke apreading in social media is this. This governments program for reduction of poverty. – these poor drug addicts, OBOSEN thru EJKs.

      Ecstacy and other rich men’s drugs – users and pushers in posh condominium units, and private and rich subdivisions…in resorts like Boracay, etc. They are still very much around as per a Rappler report.

      Suppliers and drug lords – a global problem of cutting the supply, even rich first world countries have not solved this. Look at Davao, almost 3 decades of DDS have not solved the drug problem. Guns, goons and gold are being used to tempt government and police leaders so why are the poor, powerless and defenseless being the ones being eliminated as in OBOSEN.

      Still, EJKs are wrong whether done against the poor and the rich. We have laws, let’s improve the justice system so that vigilante system of justice will not have the support of the masses. Unfortunately, this president will get to pack the SC and the lower courts with his kind of people much like GMA had in her almost 10 year-term.

      • karlgarcia says:

        Why did they suspend the bidding for the prison in Fort Magsaysay?
        Did the bidders backed out due to no return on investment?
        What happened to that giant rehab center near Fort Magsaysay?
        Still we need to manage idle government land, rather than ask for those with land banks to donate land which is not a bad idea, but it is quixotic.

        I am still hopeful that their poverty reduction isnot just killing the poor, but real job creation especially with many returning from Saudi.
        I hpe at least the Build program give three years or more jobs to construction workers, and others job seekers.

    • karlgarcia says:

      Mary Grace,
      Chemrock is really brutal.

      • True, Joe is, too…but sometimes we need to hear the truth no matter how brutal or harsh or unpleasant it may be. Also, recognition of a problem, admitting that there is a problem is the first step to finding a solution.

        Solution will never come if we or the majority of us will continue to deny that there is a problem.

        What do we do with the problem that is Duterte with all the 16M enablers and supporters?

        Unite, 60%…unite!!!

      • edgar lores says:

        No, Chemrock is not brutal.

        It is Duterte who is brutal.

        Chemrock and JoeAm are being honest.

        Chemrock is saying and showing Duterte like he really is.

        • karlgarcia says:

          Ok sorry …erase ,forget that I said brutal

          • As my son says, “No prob, Bob”. I’ve refrained from publishing graphic photos because they are emotionally brutal to contemplate, but Chemrock did it with the right caveates, that we risk denying what is happening if we fail to see the harsh, explicit results of the drug war.

          • I apologize, too. It was I who said it first and you just replied in jest.

            I note with thanks sir edgar’s distinction, brutal vs honest.

            Sorry, chemrock…my bad.

            I meant brutal truth, not you being brutal.

      • NHerrera says:

        Mary, edgar, karl too (for the half-joke, half-serious note)

        on brutality: Hear, hear.

        But it is something the Department of Tourism does not want to hear!

  8. Micha says:

    For the nth time I say that we are all complicit in Duterte’s murderous rampage when we have conceded that the mere consumption or possession of certain substances is considered a criminal act. That, plainly, is what gives fuel and legal arrogance in the killing spree. A pedicab driver who occasionally sniffs shabu is considered a criminal and is thus fair target for liquidation.

    Human history is fraught with such flawed and unjust laws.

    The bigger problem for Duterte is that his war on drugs is an unwinnable war. There is going to be no such thing as a victory march for Duterte and his police berdugos. And because the production and distribution cartel has remained intact, a post-Duterte Philippines will most likely see a resurgence in drug trade and consumption unless there’d be a significant improvement in the economic condition of the poor.

  9. madlanglupa says:

    This is most atrocious than death, definitely cruel as Auschwitz and as cruel as the late Liliosa Hilao’s fate: a corpse of a non-person treated more like cordwood, then disposed of unceremoniously, and then fanatics venomously approving this so-called war to separate their kind from the “non-humans” whom they see as lower than a common insect.

    VACC, which strongly supported PRRD and hence gone to great lengths to place him into power by calling for intensified authoritarian law-and-order policies, have of late realized what a disaster this “war” is because rogue cops are now taking advantage of the relaxed “rules of engagement” repeatedly downgraded by this incomprehensible padrino-based leadership.


  10. gerverg1885 says:

    Duterte defined illegal drug addiction in a sweeping manner as if the minds of all those who got hooked had been addled to the point of no return and could no longer change their lives. He should have asked Freddie Aguilar about his experience before he made a name for himself if he had any sense in his cruel way of thinking.

    This is a simple problem that started with the family and should have been solved, firstly, by the family, and if any solution fails, then it’s the turn of the barangay officials to stop the flow of the supply with the assistance of the police…if both had not been into the trade themselves.

    In supposedly trying to eradicate this scourge to society, Duterte did not think even once that he created a monster of himself and an even bigger monster in the ranks of rogue policemen that he is now incapable of reining in because they tasted blood that is most delicious and profitable.

    • chemrock says:

      Pacquiao was by his side all the while. Didn’t the ex drug user exchange notes with him? Anyway, the thinking class knows the drug war is simply an excuse of a dictatorial mind of someone devoid of ideas of how to move a country forward.

  11. Zen says:

    The truth is brutal at times. Winston Churchill once said, ‘ If you are going through hell, keep going’ and so we shall until that ‘ Time of the Killing ‘ we have successfully passed through. Christians knew that to reach the Divine, we have to go through the Cross. Thank you for this post Chemrock.

  12. The added insult is the luxury given to Marcos Sr. – in all of Asia the protocols of burying the dead are extremely important. The statement made both ways is very clear.

    The value of people differs greatly in the Philippines- in life and in death.

    • Bill In Oz says:

      Chemrock, Irineo I suspect that the huge rapid recent population growth is having it’s effects psychologically on Filipinos.

      Here are the stats on population growth in the Philippines from,


      The total population of the Philippines in 1955 was just 22.1 million. In 1970 it was 35.8 million. It is now 103,7 millions

      And that population growth in cities, where most of the drug killings have happened, is even more rapid.

      In 1955 the urban population was 6.3 millions. I note that 44.8 % of the population is now urban with a total 46.5 millions ! This is a totally new phenomena. And population density is extremely high in many parts of the cities. I know I saw it in Manila

      Dare I say that many Filipinos have become blase about deaths among poor strangers, when barios/districts have become so very crowded. Unfortunately this fits in with the fact that the rich districts ( like Makati ) with lower population densities and more wealth, also have fewer fatalities.

      This is not a happy thought on my part. But maybe it reflects a psychological reality.

    • chemrock says:

      Having gone local for quite a while, I hate going negative on Filipinos. On the other hand, it’s extremely difficult to be positive in Edgar’s Time of the Killings.

    • Rolando mariano says:

      Very true!

  13. Bill In Oz says:

    Is it Nature Chemrock ? I ask myself, “Why the callousness and randomness of it all ? Filipinos are never like this at a personal level. ” But staying as I did in Quiapo, taught me first hand how crowded it is in Manila..

    And psychologically that is really destructive.

    • chemrock says:

      Nature works in unusual ways. We get whales banking and die wholesale, frogs coming out in thousands, currently something usual is happening in Philippines — oarfish are surfacing from the depths. Mostly it’s due to overcrowding. It;s Lance’s soylent green scenario. So maybe Philippines is over populated, something is affecting the mass physche of the people.

    • popoy says:

      Think not of human obscenity. Many parts of Manila have long been INHUMAN SETTLEMENTS. Human rights to decent living is not within the ambit of CHR laws.

    • Bill in Oz says:

      A comment to Edgar & Lance . I noticed that neither of you have responded Edgar to my thoughts that simple crowding may be a cause psychologically of the acceptance of the brutal drug death killings campaign by Duterte, You have stick to a purely moral (or amoral ?). perspective. But I wonder if you have any thought son this.

      • edgar lores says:

        Bill in Oz,

        I agree with you.

        Overcrowding is a trigger of stress and aggression, and overpopulation reduces the quality of life and, therefore, its inherent value. Life becomes predatory and cheap.

        On the other side of the coin, while men are social creatures, there is a need for solitude. Not only for introverts, like myself, but also for extroverts. The unintended consequence of not having time to and for ourselves is social alienation, despite the prevalence of cell phones and social media.

        The overdensity in our cities does not afford time for solitude. There are not many parks in cities like Manila. I was surprised to find out that Manila and Pateros, while not having the largest areas, are the two cities with the highest population densities.

        In this list of 40 cities, 9 are in the Philippines:


        • Bill, chemp, edgar, et al.

          It’s not just Philippines , we’re feeling it here too (in the anti-immigrant sentiment but also in the type of violence recently, although violent crimes have been steadily going down since the 90s—- up this past year though– there are more group type violence, group on group, group on one, or one on group, mass shootings to social media induced flash mob type violence ).

          The new cocaine/heroin supply chain model (Mexican model) is to take all this stuff to the rural communities; When there I didn’t see shabu in rural/small towns but it was ubiquitous in the cities, 100% of the prostitutes used it, 99% of taxi drivers… so I’m sure a few years on, with BPO’s rise and just exponential spread, shabu eventually got to the rural/small towns over there—- an example of an urban problem gone rural.

          So up in that chart above urban is already affecting rural, we’re seeing it here, i’m sure meth/shabu spread like wild fire over there (someone once mentioned the miserable rats experiment here, where happy rats avoided poison, but miserable rats consistently drank from poison… ie. slow suicide).

          The big picture IMHO is over-population and over-urbanization in world, not just Philippines , it’s not quite Soylent Green time , but certainly (and it depends on each country or systems of gov’t) the time may now be ripe for culling. I mentioned it before , but I think this whole Drug War in the Philippines is also a cleaning up campaign, ie.

          if there is over-population, who would be the best candidates to go first? The miserable rats or the happy rats? Since the Philippines doesn’t have outsiders, “others”, addicts seem the most logical choice (along with dirty politicians, but these are harder to target, but the mandate for that was clear in the election also). Now one can argue the immorality of that, no problem…

          But if we pan out farther and ruminate on that first graph, with that steep red climb, it doesn’t take a genius to forecast that something wicked this way comes. The question now is,

          Is mass murder moral when understood as part of homeostasis, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaia_hypothesis ? Look at the bigger picture, look at that red line rising ominously. Bill, it’s not just the Philippines , its the world. If mass murder now moral, who gets to chose?

          • Bill in Oz says:

            Lance I am a great admirer of James Lovelock and have been since the 1980’s. I have all his published books on the shelf.

            However I do not remember him ever suggesting that humans would become murderous in response to the pressures of over population & crowding. And as he has always lived in a low density part of the world ( Cornwall ) I ‘d be surprised if he came up with it.

            We are today in Melbourne in Australia Pop. now 4.5- 5.0 million. It was for many years my home town.But now it feels too crowded and busy even out of peak periods, And Sydney is worse, Though neither is like Manilla with barios like Qioapo,Tondo Binondo or Blumentrit.

            I woner if anyone in TSOH has lived in Davao and can comment from experience whether this was the same when Duterte did his death squad ‘work’ there.

            • The mass murder as moral is definitely not Lovelock’s, though I’m sure Right-wing hate groups would take to this idea like a duck to water. But based on my experience, having lived in 3rd world cities and small towns, i do feel this is coming. Whether its done out of hatred or love—- doesn’t really matter anymore as it’s already too late. Either way, some sort of Noah’s ark scenario seems likely.

              As for Davao, my experience was more east of Kabacan, I thought Zamboanga was pretty cramped , there was heavy internal refugee issues as well, refugees didn’t really move out of Mindanao but simple moved from town to town.

  14. NHerrera says:


    Good news for Europe with some bit of “vitamins” being injected into Macron’s France and now this news from Germany:

    Angela Merkel’s CDU ‘seizes key state from rivals’


    Of course, the more important bit of near-future news is the hoped for re-election of Merkel in the September General Election. It is believed that Merkel’s CDU party’s recent win in key states will now give her a boost as she seeks a fourth term.

    About time too, for France and Germany, to remain strong and in solidarity for Europe, or be slowly swept away by the OBOR (One Belt, One Road) tsunami?

  15. popoy says:

    reposted from way up there …

    chemrock says:
    May 15, 2017 at 11:26 am
    It’s beyond the capability of 16 m to see the anomaly. And they said the other side dumb down on them.


    Is TSOH NOT CLUELESS! Odysseus (ROXAS) should have asked the 16 million to plug their ears and wear no pockets to protect themselves from the sirens CGB or GBC or BGC ! While pundits keep on hammering the 16 million sailors (natutulog sa pancitan) of duldrumic tumultous Philippine seas with lullabies of loyalty, cheap currency and promises of lots of pieces of pirates gold for their mistake, It is really Greek legend SIRENS CGB what happened during the last election. Was Roxas who should have been Odysseus singing also the Songs of Sirens ! 16 million becoming one big lame excuse for a national debacle eh! Not so, or the truth if it is really beyond their capability.

    • popoy says:

      Will more than 100 million old, young and sailors-to-be get waylaid by the SONGS OF SIRENS now in its dizzying CRESCENDO ! The sailors may be AWAKE but they NEED to WAKE UP some more. Change some letters and words to unmake nonsense of these foolish posts.

      • popoy says:

        Do not ask me whoéwhat is BCG, ask the Marines (or the Phil Navy men, air force, artillery and army men) and they will say : Bravo Charlie for your Golf!

  16. chemrock, I posted this article in no less than 5 FB groups where I am member. In just one group, The Silent Majority (there are are 2 TSM) there are already 333 reactions and 172 shares and counting. They are scandalized but so grateful to you for writing it and for Joe for publishing the same.

    That’s just in 1 FB group, I have not yet monitored the others.

    • chemrock says:

      It does touch raw nerves. If one is not incensed, then humanity is lacking in the reader.

    • NHerrera says:

      Mary, good of you to spread the gospel as we in TSH and critically-minded ones know and interpret events — not needing the rocket science that Cayetano, Gordon, Uson, and Abella possess to interpret them. More power/ energy to you, Mary.

      = something regarded as true and implicitly believed
      = an unquestionable truth

      • Thanks, sir NH…I needed that, more energy, that is…this severely low TSH level drains my strength.

        It pains me that these men (Cayetano, Gordon, Pimentel and the rest of those turncoats have the gall to justify their actions in the name of “real change”. Their posturings in and out of the legislative sessions leave a sour taste in my mouth, such are intended for the gullible and indifferent Filipinos willing to swallow the lies being shoved down their collective throats but leave the stomachs heaving in disgust, insult intelligence and sense of right and wrong on the part of right thinking and freedom loving Filipinos.

        How to change the minds of the gullible ones is the toughest challenge we are facing in the face of the vast propaganda machine in the social media being unleashed by this admin ironically being funded by trillions of budget allocation for the office of the president.

        More power and energy back to you, sir NH, sir edgar, chemrock, karl, sonny, joseph, Joe, and the rest of you guys and gals.

  17. josephivo says:

    These photos prove how important it was to de-humanize first. These are not humans, vermin, drugs demolished their brains…. Saturate yourself with these beliefs and it will take away the atrocity of the pictures.

    How to tell the 80% Filipino DU30 supporters that even drug suspects are human beings too? Just as all of us with our small or bigger defaults. Did any of them have the slightest idea of what is written in the New Testament?

    • You can spot a “tweaker” (meth/shabu addict) a mile away over here, josephivo. And there are more and more of them in rural parts now, where before they were just in cities. There’s no coming back from that state (photos below), it’ll take a lot of state funds to rehabilitate much less attempt to deter (w/out force),

      “Did any of them have the slightest idea of what is written in the New Testament?”

      Ephesians 6, https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+6&version=KJV

      IMHO would be popular now for Christians over there,

      Ephesians 6

      1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.

      2 Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;

      3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

      4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

      5 Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ;

      6 Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart;

      7 With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men:

      8 Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.

      9 And, ye masters, do the same things unto them, forbearing threatening: knowing that your Master also is in heaven; neither is there respect of persons with him.

      10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

  18. Chris says:

    When I hear stories of weeping Filipinos touching Duterte’s car like he was the Black Nazarene or Pope, I start to wonder…

    Like, what goes in the mind of these Pro-Duterte people when they see images of the slaughter, or of the funeral homes and broken families? Do they think of the long term consequences of their blind adoration?

    • chemrock says:

      I wonder too. And I’m always reminded of the similarities to those Norkor folks wading into the sea to bid the Dear Leader goodbye as his boat starts to move off ever so reluctantly. I wonder and I cringe. Hair raising stuff.

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