Epimanes from Davao

By Chemrock

The Guardian once described the Philippines as an event rich country. Even for them, the events in the past few days must have been a stupendous world record. I refer to :

1. Congress voted overwhelmingly to impeach CJ Sereno in a Kangaroo court where:

  • The respondent was denied representation and the right to question witnesses.
  • Politicized Supreme Court justices turned up in Congress against the CJ and displayed stunning pettiness that will cause students in law schools to cringe in embarrassment for years to come.
  • The case was brought by complainant, one Attorney Gadon, an ardent supporter of Marcos and lawyer of ex-president Arroyo, and who has a suspension case against him in court, who lied and committed numerous heresies in the hearing. His solution for the conflicts in Mindanao is the extermination of Muslims.
  • None of the charges are grounds for impeachment.

2. Supreme Court revolt:

Fearful of a senate trial where the CJ will have her day in court, a majority of SC justices ambushed the CJ with a demand to go on indefinite leave and resign voluntarily. This move is not only unconstitutional but outrageous even by Philippines standards. It clearly showed two things – (a) opponents of the CJ are fearful that TRUTH will prevail in the public hearing in Senate where the CJ can ably defend herself, and (b) those men/women in black robes can no longer function judiciously. The Supreme Court is a failed institution and can no longer deserve to be held in esteem.

3. Quo warranto case against Chief Justice Sereno:

Having failed in forcing a harassed CJ to resign, Plan B was activated. Acting on the proposal of the same attorney who filed the impeachment case in Congress, the Solicitor General acted outside his scope of duties to file the quo warranto. This is a motion to sack a govt official on grounds of disqualification. The Solgen’s  filing is politically driven, legally atrociously weak, but may achieve its purpose because Duterte now owns the Supreme Court. The quo warranto now gives Congress a way out of their dilemma of having to take a risk and submit the impeachment to Senate where success is not guaranteed because their case is extremely weak. So they now put forth an excuse of needing time to perfect the articles of impeachment, in reality, praying for a successful quo warranto to make an impeachment trial unnecessary.

4. SC coerced Philippines Judges Association and Philippines Court Employees Association to call on the CJ to resign :

In standard Michaelvalian moves, next came the typical Filipino dramas. It makes for light entertainment if not for the fact that it was malfeasance by the very highest judicial body in the land. Court Administrator Midas Marquez (who aspires to a seat in the SC – the audacity given his poor grasp of law) and some SC justices, engineered for judges and court employees all over the country to dress up in red (against dress code regulations) to rally and call for the CJ’s resignation. Nowhere in the world has there been an SC that orders employees to break internal regulations, participate in an illegal protest, to make an unconstitutional call.  The purpose was to put on a show to the public that dissent in the SC is widespread. It turned out to be a dud for the organizers as a majority of these employees ignored the call.

5. Ponce Enrile (ex-senator, ex-Marcos’ Defence Secretary) joins CJ impeachment prosecution panel:

It is 93-year-old Enrile’s last chance to kill the country, having failed to do that as Defence Secretary under Marcos. Some say he is doing a horse-trade to gain the release of his secretary Gigi Reyes (rumored one-time lover) who is under detention for plunder charges. Could it be the prosecution panel holds great value in his capabilities seeing he once did well when he presided over the previous senate trial which impeached ex CJ Corona? More likely it’s a contemptuous statement of pure arrogance and spite to have the man who destroyed Arroyo-appointed CJ Corona during Aquino’s presidency to now destroy an Aquino-appointed CJ Sereno. One thing is for sure. Enrile’s participation will slow down trial proceedings, given his age. What is incredible is that Enrile is facing a non-bailable offence of plunder, but out on bail in deference to his agility. That he has suddenly found new vigour makes one wonder what is his secret elixir. Only in the Philippines can someone under a plunder charge prosecute a Chief Justice who is scrupulously clean.

6. Police dismissed charges against drug lords:

Peter Lim and Kerwin Espinosa (plus others) have been identified as drug lords. Kerwin in fact incriminated himself when he confessed to his drug dealing activities in a senate inquiry. What is more incredulous is that the Dept of Justice had hushed up the discharge order which was only leaked to the press recently. The adage is true once again. In the admin’s drug war, only the poor gets killed, the drug lords go free. Now they let drug lords go free, and they conceal that miscarriage of justice from the public. Is your head spinning yet? They let drug lords go free, and the Public Prosecutor Reyes Lucena, who dropped the charges, gets promoted to RTC judge. But what could possibly be the reason for this transgression? Transfer of drug money hoard, or a sealed deal to ensure participation in a grand finale orgy of witnesses to jail Senator De Lima on trumped-up drug charges? De Lima earned the irk of Duterte for her dogged determination to investigate into the president’s involvement in extra-judicial killings.  She came so close to pinning human rights abuse charges on Duterte when he was mayor of Davao. She clearly is the Number One pain in the neck for the president and the threat from her remains and needs to be extinguished.

7. Presidential decree granted subpoena power to the police:

This gives the power to the police to order your presence in the police station to assist in their investigation. There is no need for a court order. Giving this power to police is dangerous. Giving it to a discredited police force that is corrupt, ill-disciplined, participates in indiscriminate killings, is highly politicised, and is motivated by cash rewards for drug hits, is an open invitation to mayhem and HR abuses. What follows after subpoena for your appearance? Hot on this heel will come subpoena for your personal particulars, your bank account information, your Facebook accounts? etc.

Descent to madness

Events in the past few days in the Philippines have been dizzying, even for God watching from a distance. Obviously nothing moves without the chief executive’s directive. Duterte is the master puppeteer. It is bewildering that very well-educated men and women in high office succumb so easily to pressure and self-interest to be willing marionettes.

The final step towards the full capture of the Judiciary by Duterte is on hand. He is certainly moving towards a full-blown dictatorial regime. But what is actually the bigger picture? It is to ensure him a sanctuary from charges of human rights abuses, that unexplained wealth of himself and daughter Sara need not be explained,  that son Paolo will never be called to account for drug trafficking and smuggling, treason charges for giving away Philippines’ rights over West Philippines Seas to the Chinese will not come to pass, and there will be no obstruction from the SC for the Federalism move being railroaded on the people.

Under relentless push for lawlessness, counsel for reason, pacificism and passivity are options that pave the way to hell. The state of the nation has passed the point of reasoning. Ask yourself what will you do if the quo warranto succeeds?

Who am I  to comment when millions of Filipinos are cheering the admin on? Even a matronly famous and highly popular actress like Sharon Cuneta, whose husband is a stalwart of the opposition Liberal Party, unabashedly gushes up to Duterte and the values he represent. Many are those who don’t understand the madness and the adoring crowds that are still cheering. For the bewildered, the main intention of my writing is to share the story below. The above preface tells of the relentless advancement of madness in the past few days, the story (excerpt) below portrays what the madness looks like.


THE FOUR BEASTS IN ONE by Edgar Allan Poe (excerpt)

Antiochus Epiphanes (215-164 BC) was an extremely cruel ruler in the old city of Antioch. He probably killed more Jews than Hitler (ratio wise). His cruelty led people to call him Antiochus Apimanes (The mad one). Poe describes a typical crowd scene which likens, to my imaginative mind, the cheering crowds of Duterte.


“It is certainly a strange place! What is the meaning of yonder singular building? See! it towers above all others, and lies to the eastward of what I take to be the royal palace!”

That is the new Temple of the Sun, who is adored in Syria under the title of Elah Gabalah. Hereafter a very notorious Roman Emperor will institute this worship in Rome, and thence derive a cognomen, Heliogabalus. I dare say you would like to take a peep at the divinity of the temple. You need not look upat the heavens; his Sunship is not there — at least not the Sunship adored by the Syrians. That deity will be found in the interior of yonder building. He is worshipped under the figure of a large stone pillar terminating at the summit in a cone or pyramid, whereby is denoted Fire.

“Hark! — behold! — who can those ridiculous beings be, half naked, with their faces painted, shouting and gesticulating to the rabble?”

Some few are mountebanks. Others more particularly belong to the race of philosophers. The greatest portion, however — those especially who belabor the populace with clubs — are the principal courtiers of the palace, executing, as in duty bound, some laudable comicality of the king’s.

“But what have we here? Heavens! the town is swarming with wild beasts! How terrible a spectacle! — how dangerous a peculiarity!”

Terrible, if you please; but not in the least degree dangerous. Each animal, if you will take the pains to observe, is following, very quietly, in the wake of its master. Some few, to be sure, are led with a rope about the neck, but these are chiefly the lesser or timid species. The lion, the tiger, and the leopard are entirely without restraint. They have been trained without difficulty to their present profession, and attend upon their respective owners in the capacity of valets-de-chambre. It is true, there are occasions when Nature asserts her violated dominion; — but then the devouring of a man-at-arms, or the throttling of a consecrated bull, is a circumstance of too little moment to be more than hinted at in Epidaphne.

“But what extraordinary tumult do I hear? Surely this is a loud noise even for Antioch! It argues some commotion of unusual interest.”

Yes — undoubtedly. The king has ordered some novel spectacle — some gladiatorial exhibition at the Hippodrome — or perhaps the massacre of the Scythian prisoners — or the conflagration of his new palace — or the tearing down of a handsome temple — or, indeed, a bonfire of a few Jews. The uproar increases. Shouts of laughter ascend the skies. The air becomes dissonant with wind  instruments, and horrible with the clamor of a million throats. Let us descend, for the love of fun, and see what is going on! This way — be careful! Here we are in the principal street, which is called the street of Timarchus. The sea of people is coming this way, and we shall find a difficulty in stemming the tide. They are pouring through the alley of Heraclides, which leads directly from the palace — therefore the king is most probably among the rioters. Yes — I hear the shouts of the herald proclaiming his approach in the pompous phraseology of the East. We shall have a glimpse of his person as he passes by the temple of Ashimali. Let us ensconce ourselves in the vestibule of the sanctuary; he will be here anon. In the meantime let us survey this image. What is it? Oh, it is the god Ashimah in proper person. You perceive, however, that he is neither a lamb, nor a goat, nor a satyr; neither has he much resemblance to the Pan of the Arcadians. Yet all these appearances have been given — I beg pardon — will be given — by the learned of future ages, to the Ashimah of the Syrians. Put on your spectacles, and tell me what it is. What is it?

“Bless me! it is an ape!”

True — a baboon; but by no meanre antiquarians! But see! — see! — yonder scampers a ragged little urchin. Where is he going? What is he bawling about? What does he say? Oh! he says the king is coming in triumph; that he is dressed in state; that he has just finished putting to death, with his own hand, a thousand chained Israelitish prisoners! For this exploit the ragamuffin is lauding him to the skies! Hark! here comes a troop of a similar description. They have made a Latin hymn upon the valor of the king, and are singing it as they go:

Mille, mille, mille,
Mille, mille, mille,
Decollamnus, unus homo!
Mille, mille, mille, mille, decollavimus!
Mille, mille, mille!
Vivat qui mille mille occidit!
Tantum vini habet nemo
Quantum sanguinis effudit!

Which may be thus paraphrased:

A thousand, a thousand, a thousand,
A thousand, a thousand, a thousand,
We, with one warrior, have slain!
A thousand, a thousand, a thousand, a thousand,
Sing a thousand over again!
Soho! — let us sing
Long life to our king,
Who knocked over a thousand so fine!
Soho! — let us roar,
He has given us more
Red gallons of gore
Than all Syria can furnish of wine!

“Do you hear that flourish of trumpets?”

Yes — the king is coming! See! the people are aghast with admiration, and lift up their eyes to the heavens in reverence! He comes! — he is coming! — there he is!

“Who? — where? — the king? — I do not behold him; — cannot say that I perceive him.”

Then you must be blind.

“Very possible. Still I see nothing but a tumultuous mob of idiots and madmen, who are busy in prostrating themselves before a gigantic cameleopard, and endeavoring to obtain a kiss of the animal’s hoofs. See! the beast has very justly kicked one of the rabble over — and another — and another — and another. Indeed, I cannot help admiring the animal for the excellent use he is making of his feet.”

Rabble, indeed! — why these are the noble and free citizens of Epidaphne! Beast, did you say? — take care that you are not overheard. Do you not perceive that the animal has the visage of a man? Why, my dear sir, that cameleopard is no other than Antiochus Epiphanes — Antiochus the Illustrious, King of Syria, and the most potent of all the autocrats of the East! It is true, that he is entitled, at times, Antiochus Epimanes — Antiochus the madman — but that is because all people have not the capacity to appreciate his merits. It is also certain that he is at present ensconced in the hide of a beast, and is doing his best to play the part of a cameleopard; but this is done for the better sustaining his dignity as king. Besides, the monarch is of gigantic stature, and the dress is therefore neither unbecoming nor over large. We may, however, presume he would not have adopted it but for some occasion of especial state. Such, you will allow, is the massacre of a thousand Jews. With how superior a dignity the monarch perambulates on all fours! His tail, you perceive, is held aloft by his two principal concubines, Ellinë and Argelaïs; and his whole appearance would be infinitely prepossessing, were it not for the protuberance of his eyes, which will certainly start out of his head, and the queer color of his face, which has become nondescript from the quantity of wine he has swallowed. Let us follow him to the hippodrome, whither he is proceeding, and listen to the song of triumph which he is commencing:

Who is king but Epiphanes?
Say — do you know?
Who is king but Epiphanes?
Bravo! — bravo!
There is none but Epiphanes,
No — there is none:
So tear down the temples,
And put out the sun!

Well and strenuously sung! The populace are hailing him “Prince of Poets,” as well as “Glory of the East,” “Delight of the Universe,” and “most remarkable of Cameleopards.” They have encored his effusion, and — do you hear? — he is singing it over again. When he arrives at the hippodrome, he will be crowned with the poetic wreath, in anticipation of his victory at the approaching Olympics.

“But, good Jupiter! what is the matter in the crowd behind us?”

Behind us, did you say? — oh! ah! — I perceive. My friend, it is well that you spoke in time. Let us get into a place of safety as soon as possible. Here! — let us conceal ourselves in the arch of this aqueduct, and I will inform you presently of the origin of the commotion. It has turned out as I have been anticipating. The singular appearance of the cameleopard with the head of a man, has, it seems, given offence to the notions of propriety entertained in general, by the wild animals domesticated in the city. A mutiny has been the result; and, as is usual upon such occasions, all human efforts will be of no avail in quelling the mob. Several of the Syrians have already been devoured; but the general voice of the four-footed patriots seems to be for eating up the cameleopard. “The Prince of Poets,” therefore, is upon his hinder legs, running for his life. His courtiers have left him in the lurch, and his concubines have followed so excellent an example. “Delight of the Universe,” thou art in a sad predicament! “Glory of the East,” thou art in danger of mastication! Therefore never regard so piteously thy tail; it will undoubtedly be draggled in the mud, and for this there is no help. Look not behind thee, then, at its unavoidable degradation; but take courage, ply thy legs with vigor, and scud for the hippodrome! Remember that thou art Antiochus Epiphanes, Antiochus the Illustrious! — also “Prince of Poets,”  “Glory of the East,” “Delight of the Universe,” and “most Remarkable of Cameleopards!” Heavens! what a power of speed thou art displaying! What a capacity for leg-bail thou art developing! Run, Prince! — Bravo, Epiphanes! — Well done, Cameleopard! — Glorious Antiochus! He runs! — he leaps! — he flies! Like an arrow from a catapult he approaches the hippodrome! He leaps! — he shrieks! — he is there! This is well; for hadst thou, “Glory of the East,” been half a second longer in reaching the gates of the Amphitheatre, there is not a bear’s cub in Epidaphne that would not have had a nibble at thy carcass. Let us be off — let us take our departure! — for we shall find our delicate modern ears unable to endure the vast uproar which is about to commence in celebration of the king’s escape! Listen! it has already commenced. See! — the whole town is topsy-turvy.

“Surely this is the most populous city of the East! What a wilderness of people! what a jumble of all ranks and ages! what a multiplicity of sects and nations! what a variety of costumes! what a Babel of languages! what a screaming of beasts! what a tinkling of instruments! what a parcel of philosophers!”

Come let us be off!

“Stay a moment! I see a vast hubbub in the hippodrome; what is the meaning of it I beseech you!”

“That? — oh nothing! The noble and free citizens of Epidaphne being, as they declare, well satisfied of the faith, valor, wisdom, and divinity of their king, and having, moreover, been eye-witnesses of his late superhuman agility, do think it no more than their duty to invest his brows (in addition to the poetic crown) with the wreath of victory in the foot-race — a wreath which it is evident he must obtain at the celebration of the next Olympiad, and which, therefore, they now give him in advance.”



71 Responses to “Epimanes from Davao”
  1. NHerrera says:

    Superb! Your 7-event listing and associated elaboration must have The Guardian agreeing wholeheartedly. You ended your piece well with Edgar Allan Poe’s story of Antiochus Epiphanes.

    Thank you. Even I who lives here has my head spinning.

  2. edgar lores says:

    1. And No. 8, of course, is the cowardly flight from ICC. No shame, no sense of responsibility, and no attempt to defend his belief in the rightness of his actions. And, definitely, no courage — so unlike Senator De Lima.

    1.1. I reckon the Epimanes from Davao would outrun the original.

    2. The story of Antiochus Epiphanes occurred more than 2,000 years ago. And we are still re-enacting his story. History. We haven’t learned from history and, so, we are doomed.

    2.1. The recounting by Poe is a fable. The four-beasts-in-one seems to be man, camel, leopard, and giraffe. The subtitle of the fable is “Homo-Cameleopard.”

    2.2. The Epimanes from Davao, in my estimate, would be a homo-hyenaboar in the form of a large crocodile.

    3. Just in the last post in my conversation with Rachel, I said we suffer from an Idolatry Complex. The 7 events are a manifestation of this complex. The King can do no wrong. And everybody must bend to his will.

    4. I was a bit surprised by the response of the ICC which acknowledged, in part, that the decision to withdraw was a “sovereign decision.” I know that by “sovereign,” ICC meant the Philippines as a sovereign nation. But the decision to withdraw was unilaterally decided by Duterte. He did not consult the Senate that concurrently ratified the ICC Treaty. Nor did he consult the sovereign people.

    4.1. I would think that by the principle of symmetry, the Senate’s concurrence should be sought in the termination of the Treaty.

    4.2. Drilon said that Pacquiao blocked the Senate resolution that would empower it to participate in treaty terminations. I am still trying to understand how one senator can block a resolution in a chamber governed by majority rule.

    • Sup says:

      From rappler:
      But Pacquiao, a staunch ally of Duterte, blocked the measure.

      Then, as is now, the neophyte senator maintained that the 1987 Constitution only grants the Senate power to concur and that the President has the sole power to end a treaty.

      As quoted in the February 20, 2017 journal, Pacquiao said that the “Filipino people, being the author of the highest law of the land gave the power to the President to decide on foreign affairs; thus, he has the sole power to abrogate a treaty or international agreement.”

      Senators hands are tied, Pacquiao is laughing: On Wednesday, Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III said senators cannot stop Duterte from withdrawing from the ICC. The treaty, approved in 2011, did not include a provision mandating Senate’s concurrence in the termination of the deal.

      • edgar lores says:

        Sup, thanks.

        I am not convinced. The Senate could still have passed the resolution. The issue of termination now would then go to the Supreme Court for resolution.

      • chemrock says:

        Pacquiao can’t save Duterte. Panelo can’t save Duterte. 16 million DDS can’t save Duterte.

        The withdrawal from ICC can go ahead for all we care. Crafters of international laws are smarter than the regular Philippines Congress. They put in gotcha clauses because they have seen through the moves of murderous dictators.

        Like what I wrote previously. The fate of Dtus depend on the next admin. A friendly admin under Bong bong or Sara etc, he has sanctuary in Philippines, but he cannot travel overseas where he will be arrested. An unfriendly new admin will ship him off to Brussels.

        For little Dutertes, an unfriendly admin will ship them off to Brussels when international pressure bears down on them. If it’s pres BBM. it’s goodbye Cayetano for sure.

    • No. 8 even attempted to pull a quo warranto thing (void ab initio due to formal reasons) on the ICC. Unfortunately they don’t go by the Filipino rules of due palusot.

      It is so unfortunate that we will never see Alan Peter Cayetano put the non-English-speaking people in The Hague in their place by speaking to the in Ateneo English.

      It is a pity we will never see Jose Calida scare them with his pockmarks and intimidate them into submission with his fist bump.

      We will never see Persida Acosta shout them down with a shrill voice and a menacing stare, dressed in a doctor’s uniform and stethoscope.

      We will never witness Richard Gordon bore them to death.

      We will never see how they cower in fear before Harry Roque.

      We will never see them witness the fashionable Salvador Panelo.

      The Philippines had a true chance to prove its mettle there, finally. 😦

      • edgar lores says:

        The most painful encounter would be an over-the-top tongue lashing from Persida. The horror!

        No misogyny intended.

      • chemrock says:

        Some say God works in unusual ways. I always see the irony and humour of God’s ways. It may well turn out that we will in the end, have to thank Roque for his role in getting Philippines to ratify the ICC during Pnoys term,

        The whole damn clique of thugs with blood on their hands now live with the prospect of being hauled away in a jet plane to Brussels one day.

        • sonny says:

          1, chempo.

          Be it so modern,it is also ancient, this our version of pre-Christian coming.

          Psalm 14:1 – The fool has said in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, they have committed abominable deeds;

  3. Sup says:

    What can i say? Life is good in the Philippines, never boring? 🙂

    • NHerrera says:

      If you were watching a movie on the Philippines versus one on Switzerland indeed you will not be bored with the former. Having said that, you may, however, be sick at looking and hearing some that you see on the news and TV ad nauseam.

  4. karlgarcia says:

    Epiphanes to Epimanes- Does it apply to Duterte?
    Not at all, I think he started out as Epimanes right away.

  5. madlanglupa says:

    Those events are too obvious for one to connect the dots and conclude that there is a massive attempt at manipulating the judiciary for a hostile takeover.

    A Supreme Court firmly under the thumb of the regime would become a rubber-stamp judiciary, just with the legislature and the Cabinet, so losing its status as an independent arbiter and as a means of the system of checks-and-balances. At the same time, certain cases that are stuck in the SC but are also potentially lucrative to clients would be cleared out in their favor. I’m pretty positive that the likes of Calida would find it personally profitable if the SC is bent to his favor.

    If such dark control of the SC is attained, it would also affect the rest of the judiciary, including other cases considered profitable, those related to land holdings, businesses, contracts, etc. It’s like suddenly pouring a lot of grease.

    • chemrock says:

      It’s saying the obvious. At this point in time, Epimanes already controls the numbers in the SC, I tend to think loosing political capital over the unconstitutional removal of Sereno is an unnecessary gamble. So why bother. I think this time, Epimanes has already received too much favour from the tainted justices in SC. Although it is the hand of Epimanes in all these moves against Soreno, the Cameleopard was probably goaded into it. it’s utang na loob in reverse, He has to reward those lusting for the seat of the CJ,

    • madlanglupa says:

      Oh, something else. How wonderful (sarcasm implied).

  6. Duterte’s government says his threat to withdraw from the ICC will start the end of the institution and discourage new members to join. What a farce. How much can his government influence international justice if not zero considering the impacts of his current troubles.

    • chemrock says:

      The Epimanes suffer from narcissistic disorder. Such a personality sees himself on a bigger stage than he really is. Surround him with with sycophants like Cayetano, Andamar, Roque, Panelo, and Calida, mash with their aggregate capacity for pathological lying to their boss on how beautiful his emperor’s clothes are, you end up with a sicko who thinks he is the centre of the world.

      In a recent interview with NBC’s Megan Kelly in Moscow, here’s how Putin said of Duterte :
      “….. And how will a government like DU30’s, which recently announced a false “separation” from the US in order to align itself with China and Russia “against the world,” finally position itself in such a conflict? This, for us, is the least unimportant question.”

      (Note = I did not see the full interview by Megan Kelly. The above is extracted from Kit Tatad’s good article in Manila Times)

      In other words, in Putin’s eyes, Epimanes is only a fly on the wall. Ouch, sure hurts, Will he go on his putangs? Of course not. One needs real courage to say something like that to Putin.

      People who try to deceive others all the time end up deceiving themselves. One really pities these people. When one lies to deceive, he voice a proposition (the lie) but in his mind he knows the correct proposition (the truth). At some stage the lies get into the consciousness, and over a prolonged period, he goes bonkers as the lies and the truths turn him round and round.

      • NHerrera says:

        Putin > Putang I?

        No way. Cowards know when a real Bully like another one from the North can’t be insulted knowing that the real bully can reply where it hurts — unlike the way he thinks he can bully the UN and its Officers. It should be remembered that Novichok is not Fentanyl.

      • karlgarcia says:

        The Du30 part was just the take of Tatad.
        You are giving Du30 too much credit.
        Duterte was never mentioned, he is not even a fly, he is not in Putin’s thoughts.


        • NHerrera says:

          Karl, thanks for the link to that Vladimir Putin interview by Megyn Kelly (datelined March 10, 2018).

        • chemrock says:

          You are right Karl, I didnt phrase it correctly. My apologies.

          Actually the interview was in Karlinigrad. I mean Kalingrad. Over 2 or 3 days.

          She interview Putin much earlier in St Petersburg. That session did’nt go well for Megan. Putin practically had her for breakfast.

          • karlgarcia says:

            No need to apologize chemrock 😊

          • Micha says:


            Kelly asked pointed questions and Putin, in his home turf, mostly answered in hogwash. The autocrat is poised to be re-elected without a credible challenger and he’s making Trump launder part of the dirty money he and his plutocrat buddies have stolen from the Russian people.

            • chemrock says:

              Micha I agree with your views. I’m not saying Putin was right in all his answers. One can see through bullshits. What I meant was he could handle Megan’s questions and turn her around. The interview in St Petersburg went badly for her. Putin basically educated her. The interview in Kalingrad was a great improvement. Putin was less confrontational.

  7. #9 DOJ just “provisionally” accepted Napoles into the Witness Protection Program.

    Aguirre kissing up to Epimanes after his display of incompetence? Poor PNoy just responded to the flimsy electioneering charge at COMELEC. I smell a stinky brew being cooked with Napoles as witness and PNoy and Abad as accused. Tanda, Pogi and Sexy will be exonerated next?

  8. Sup says:

    Indonesians could be jailed for criticising national politicians under a new law which came into force Thursday, in what critics slammed as a major step back for the world’s third-biggest democracy.

    The vaguely worded bill passed the 560-member house last month but has just become official, over the objections of President Joko Widodo who refused to sign off on the controversial legislation.

    Widodo does not have veto power over the bill, although it can be challenged at the Constitutional Court.

    The so-called MD3 law opens to the door to pressing charges against anyone who “disrespects parliament or its members” but does not set out possible minimum or maximum jail terms.

    Indonesia is the third biggest democracy globally behind India and the United States.

    Protesters across the Southeast Asian archipelago who blasted the bill could potentially see themselves jailed for such demonstrations in the future, critics said.

    “How does the law define disrespect?” said Sebastian Salang from the monitoring group Indonesian Parliament Watchdog.

    “It is not clearly explained and could be loosely interpreted as long as it fits the lawmakers’ interest to silence critics.”

    Hundreds of protesters staged a rally outside the Constitutional Court in Jakarta Thursday, calling on it to revoke the legislation.

    A spokesman for the court said it had already received three petitions challenging the law, but it could take months before it renders a decision.

    Any investigation of a parliamentarian would have to be approved by the House Ethics Council under the new law, which could block probes by Indonesia’s powerful Corruption Eradication Commission.

    Some observers say the new law would criminalise criticism of the endemic corruption and poor performance among some members of Indonesia’s political system.

    At least eight lawmakers have been arrested for corruption in recent years, including former house speaker Setya Novanto who is on trial in one of the country’s biggest-ever graft scandals.

    There have been growing concerns about freedom of speech and human rights during Widodo’s tenure.

    Indonesia is pushing to clamp down on gay and pre-marital sex as part of a sweeping criminal law overhaul, while the government has used sweeping Internet legislation to arrest people accused of defaming the president and other high-ranking officials online.

    Last year, the government issued a decree allowing the country to ban groups that oppose its official state ideology.

    Widodo has called for drug dealers to be shot if they resist arrest as the country wrestles with what he has called a drug “emergency”.


  9. Sup says:

    Could lawyers sue him for trying to destroy government property? 🙂

    (And you’re saying that the President was making a drama? I tell you, when the President found out about it, he punched the wall in Malacañang and his hand went swollen out of anger.)


  10. Sup says:

    Enrile said the direction of President Duterte in proposing a joint exploration with China for hydrocarbons in the SCS “is correct.”

    “Malampaya will be gone. Now, our best chance will be Benham Rise, but even that will entail a big, big amount of investment and we have to have a Navy to guard it. Otherwise, it will be taken away from us by force. Don’t kid yourself, resource control will become a bone of contention among countries in the world in the century,” he added


    • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

      It’s been quite a while, yeah
      snoozers might have failed
      to notice and appreciate
      years of creativity in human
      and goods physical mobility
      how cars, trucks and trains must look
      like a thing of dignity, honesty and beauty.

      Insects they should look like, may be
      so Cars now look like insects
      since car makers turned entomologists
      you see cars like giant crawling insects
      beatles and bugs not like bedbugs
      to look more menacing cockroaches
      slithering through traffic.
      Not so for trains phallus like
      they snake through rails with
      heads like kadiri reptiles.

  11. chemrock says:

    The hush-hush release of the drug lords Peter Lim and Kerwin Espinosa brought an onslaught of protests that the admin can no longer brush off with customary impunity. The president cannot waive it aside with another cussing joke. What were they thinking off anyway?

    Like a Hollywood movie shoot that goes off-script, the actors improvise. And so Roque tells of Duterte punching the wall in anger when he heard of the DOJ’s lapse, Aguire blames prosecutors and wants to re-investigate a completed investigation, Bato tells Aguire to take the boss seriously. We have to pretend to believe them that such an important act by the DOJ was never discussed in cabinet.

    But the madness continues as we see Janet Napoles, the primary schemer that relieved tax payers of billions of pesos in the PDAF scams. is now a govt asset and given police protection.

    Meanwhile, NFA rice supply in Mindanao is at critically low levels. NFA rice supply for Davao Del Sur runs out today Saturday Mar 17, 2018. The celebration continues till there is no food in the stomach.

  12. chemrock says:

    With all institutions in the govt captured by the admin, truth will be a rare commodity. Sadly, the BSP has also fallen. In the face of rising inflation, BSP dispelled fear by saying their expectation remains unchanged in the range of 2-4%. Then they admitted the inflation will be in the upper range. When the latest inflation figure surpassed 4% they now say their expectation is 4.4 – 4.9%, still within range. It will always be within a shifting range ! The impact of inflationary pressure from TRAIN has been felt. The 2nd, 3rd wave of inflationary is yet to come.

    All dictators in ancient and modern history eventually are stopped by failed economies. It is a stunning realisation that we have never actually hear Duterte speak on the economy at all. Economics has taken a back seat to the ideologies of EJK and anti-dilawanism.

    When will bonfires be out? Till the madness has taken it’s full course, I’m afraid.

    • It is fascinating to watch grown-up legislators sticking with Duterte in the face of what is increasingly uncivilized and destructive lunacy. I know there are Filipino heroes. These people are the opposite.

      • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

        TSoH denizens rightly cry FOUL
        Philippine lawmakers are no job doers.
        They do most everything else
        But less do they, their sworn job
        of crafting good laws.

        TSoH like Joe Am, Chemrock,
        Edgar or Karl etc. should write
        the shoes to throw to the dungeons
        of investigations, investigations kuno
        for remedial legislation.

        Investigations are sleuth ‘s and police’s work
        Research is quality work for original
        and remedial legislation. Go, GO, GO
        read and cogitate what they most do, those
        U.S. legislators in D.C.

        It should had ended then
        by the tragedy meted Jesus Christ
        Shakedowns and Kangaroo trials
        Like circus awaited by the people
        from their paid clowns
        and muscle men and fearless
        lion-tamers of dociled tigers.

        • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

          “What is your point, Sonnamagan.” is what the late Max Soliven would have asked Popoy Snooza. “Well, it’s elementary Max,” would have been the answer. Congress should have invited (not investigated) them wise (but snoring) guys to advise how Congress can help them:

          * what should be done to insure adequate supply of rice all over the country
          * what is the best and economical way to revive and rehab MRT
          * what is the one best way to help drug addicts
          * what is the best way to stop the flood of illegal drugs to the country
          * what is the best way to stop erroneous dropping of charges
          * perhaps a thousand more etcetera to make lawmakers earn their pay

          “HOW can Congress help you, you clueless tax paid public servants” should be
          the mantra of tax paid congressional committee members.

          HOW CAN CONGRESS HELP by lawmaking these politicians and bureaucrats
          do their job? Easier said than done is the excuse of a life of
          Wakarangs, Wakatans, Waknakataws, and Wakawakwaks.

          • Superb set of questions, asked the way a businessman would ask them. The combined intellectual capacity of the Senate majority would have a hard time organizing such an action agenda. They salute, parrot, and speak as if they were patriots.

          • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

            Popoy may be an hijo de snooza (not a yoodeh) but calling people names is not in his cup of tea when Popoy says a life of backsliding, thievery, insatiable appetite and impunity learned from the lingo of kanto boys which are now extinct specie. It violates human rights to call people not their behavior as backsliders, thieves, insatiables and impuniters based on false news.

    • sonny says:

      From captains to minions …

      The hope I carried into the tenure of PRD was that he would surround himself with capable secretaries in the cabinet to see to appropriate and equitable policies and feedback loops in the Executive departments to accomplish the “good” that was promised for his presidency. Messrs Aguirre, Dominguez, Tugade: these were the captains I originally had high hopes for. Are they enough to prevent the Executive branch from devolving into minions who support/excuse the dark side of the intentions of the administration.

      What are captains supposed to do? When do would-be captains become mere minions?

      (Borrowing from Mr Horvath of CRISIS MAGAZINE:)

      Searching for Captains

      I cannot help but think that society is missing many captains today. So many go about the business of piloting and doing what is technically correct. They stay in their cockpits, so to speak, performing the task at hand. They do not go the extra mile to reassure those desperately looking for direction. Too few want to assume the responsibility of showing themselves in authority—for fear of offending others by asking people to do what they might not want to do.

      We need captains everywhere today. They are sadly lacking in the family, schools, industry, politics, and religion. This is largely because people do not have a proper notion of what captains are. They think authority consists only in ordering people to do things. They do not realize it also involves unifying, reassuring and harmonizing.

      Saint Thomas Aquinas defines authority as an animating and ordering intelligence, the ‘vis regitiva’ that overcomes the resistance of the individual tendencies in men, organically directing and coordinating many wills toward the common good.

      Thus, captains respect order and do not violate the rules, however difficult or absurd such rules might appear. Captains do not pander to those under them to please them. They do not make grand promises yet fail to mention the sacrifices needed to get the job done. Captains recognize that people need direction and act accordingly.

      Above all, captains need to connect with those working with them to distil the best from them. Contrary to our egalitarian times, captains are not just “ordinary guys.” They need to appear as key representative figures, visibly and reassuringly, so as to secure the cooperation and confidence of those under them. Captains selflessly dedicate themselves to defending the common good to the point that they sacrifice themselves for and serve those whom they command.

      Indeed, in our confusing and chaotic times, we do not need technocrats, economists, and politicians to craft their complex programs to solve our problems. We need to ask: Where are the nation’s captains?

      (minion: a follower or underling of a powerful person, especially a servile or unimportant one.

    • NHerrera says:

      BSP changing the goal post — a trick which reminds me of the House delaying the Plenary and the sending of the Impeachment Articles of CJ Sereno to the Senate. Like you, chemrock, I thought the BSP is above that sort of thing.

  13. karlgarcia says:

    Bad trip talaga.
    Nanuntok ng dingding pero nung Davao group deadma lang. Grrrrr. #%*]*^

    Tanda, pogi, sexy will get out of jail soon.

    Ah basta bad triiiip!!!

  14. madlanglupa says:

    Slightly off-topic; I was hoping Sir Manoling come up with a witty reply to this picture.

    • “Does the ICC have airplanes?”

    • chemrock says:

      “See how high the cadets toss Bato !”

      • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

        In the now long extinct Philippine Executive Academy of the UP Col of Pub Adm I learned some etiquette for officials. To honor the flag, as it is being raise you salute with your right hand on your chest or smartly straight up your the tip of your right eyebrow. You DON’T follow it with your neck and eyes as it goes skyward. Just just imagine the entire PMA Cadet Corps in salute follows with neck and eyes as the flag is raised to tip of the pole. They will look sissies (my apologies to sissies who don’t do that).

  15. Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

    Even international jokes can be corrupted este localized. Like the one below.

    A Wakarang city prosecutor called his first witness to the stand in a trial – a grandmotherly, elderly woman. He approached her and asked, “Mrs. Wakara-Krus , do you know me?” She responded, “Why, yes, I do know you Mr. Wakarotot. I’ve known you since you were a young boy. And frankly, you’ve been a big disappointment to me. You lie, you cheat on your wife, you manipulate people and talk about them behind their backs. You think you’re a rising big shot when you haven’t the brains to realize you never will amount to anything more than a two-bit paper pusher. Yes, I know you.”

    The lawyer was stunned. Not knowing what else to do he pointed across the room and asked, “Mrs. Wakara-Krus , do you know the defense attorney?” She again replied, “Why, yes I do. I’ve known Mr. Tokawakwak since he was a youngster, too. I used to baby-sit him for his parents. And he, too, has been a real disappointment to me. He’s lazy, bigoted, he has a drinking problem. The man can’t build a normal relationship with anyone and his law practice is one of the shoddiest in the entire region. Yes, I know him.”

    At this point, the judge rapped the courtroom to silence and called both counselors to the bench. In a very quiet voice, he said with menace, “If either of you asks her if she knows me, you’ll be jailed for contempt!” ***

    Oh Tawa naman diyan. I was impressed after visiting Ottawa, the national capital of Canada claimed to have the most intelligent population in the country.

    • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

      Not so in Ottawa, London, Canberra, or D.C. the Political demographics can lower the functional literacy of the population where the Parliament este the Congress is unfortunately located.

    • That’s funny. +1. How much are apartment rents in Ottawa?

      • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

        Sorry, don’t know the rents, didn’t see the signs TO LET, even when we crossed to Quebec; don’t know also the facts behind the assertion it’s got the most intelligent population in the country. But I can assert the same with confidence to say so in the Republic of Diliman and the Principality of Loyola Heights.

  16. Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

    We were not yet teen agers in the poblacion and we don’t have cellphones, computer games, and TV sets in the late forties to pollute our minds, so, we gathered after school in street corners to be TAMBAYS and kanto boys. Books can be written on how we spent dusk to midnight. Circumcision by pukpuk or hiwa is a year or two away. Happy is our 100 percent emotion during summer, before we learned the call of basketball. We have a song we sing when seksi bebots pass by with smiles or smirks.

    We sang these lyrics to the tune of Red River Valley like this:

    Istambay Wag ninyong hahamakin
    Istambay may naitututlong din
    Kung may patay sa inyong kapitbahay
    Istambay laging naglalamay.

    So, sing it like this:

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