A Message to the Enlightened Filipinos, by Senator Antonio F. Trillanes IV

Senator Sonny Trillanes [Photo from RMN Networks]

By JoeAm

The following article was sent to the blog by the media staff of Senator Sonny Trillanes. I reprint it here because, although it is a politically partisan message, it touches on many of the issues we have discussed recently regarding the recent election and the direction of the nation. Those who disagree with the Senator are welcome to express their objection civilly in the discussion section of the blog. J.A.


A Message to the Enlightened Filipinos


Senator Antonio F. Trillanes IV

“Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” These are the words uttered by Jesus Christ as he faced the angry mob who cursed, jeered and then called for his execution via crucifixion, as though he was the worst criminal alive. Fast forward to the present, where the opposition just got subjected to an electoral bloodbath, not a few members from different anti-Duterte groups understandably, unlike the Divine and the All-Merciful, started cursing and blaming the wholesale carnage on the so-called “bobotantes” or the Filipino masses. They’ve had it. The masses are stupid, they say. But are they, really? I don’t think so.

During the People Power revolution in 1986, it was the same masses that flocked to EDSA that eventually led to the ouster of the Marcoses. The same masses again showed up in 2007 and 2010, through their votes this time, as they resoundingly rejected the corrupt Arroyo administration. In short, the Filipino masses that the enlightened class so easily blame have, historically, delivered time and again. Contrary to the elitist misconception, as far as politics is
concerned, they are as smart, sensitive and patriotic as everyone else. But if so, it begs the question, despite what’s going on in our country, why do they still support Duterte and his allies? Well, the simple answer is, they don’t know what you know and they haven’t seen what you’ve seen. In other words, the Filipino masses are not stupid and blind; they are just not as enlightened as you are.

The Information interplay

In today’s social media age, the enlightened class tends to assume two things: (1) that everybody else is on Facebook or social media; and (2) that the information they see on their newsfeeds are basically the same as what everybody else sees. Well, sad to say, both are inaccurate assumptions.

Based on various statistics, active Facebook or other social media platform users in the Philippines range from 35 to 45 million. But a significant number of these are users below 18 years old and, therefore, are non-voters. So, if we have around 60 million registered voters, it is safe to say that at least half of the voting population are not on social media at all. For those who aren’t on social media, TV is still king. From the evening news to advertisements, to the teleserye, “Ang Probinsyano” (which helped a partylist group win two seats in Congress!), it is very evident that TV still has a strong influence on the general public’s political views. If you watched free TV programs during the last two weeks of the campaign then you’d have an idea of who are going to seriously contend for the top 12 in the Senate race.

Now, with regard to having the same information on newsfeeds, as what we recently learned from the Cambridge Analytica controversy, there are algorithms used by social media platforms to determine the preferences of each individual user. What you “like” is what you’ll see. Since most Filipino users are on social media primarily for socialization purposes, then they are likely oblivious to the political information that the enlightened class is seeing and absorbing. Further compounding this problem of information disparity are the fake news and trolls.

Ultimately, the glue that binds all these information and spreads it to the rest of the populace is the so-called word-of-mouth communication. It is where the interplay of facts, news, fake news, advertisements, urban legends, myths and rumors get chewed on and chewed out.

Duterte the Master Propagandist

Unfortunately for us, Duterte and his allies are well aware of these dynamics too. As a policy, they have constantly distorted information and disrupted the information flow to deceive and manipulate the minds of the general public. Duterte himself, as mayor of Davao City for almost three decades, has mastered this propaganda game as an essential element to his hold on power.

After winning as mayor in the 1987 elections, Duterte unleashed the Davao Death Squad on the depressed communities in Davao City. He justified the killings as a means to purge and purify the city, much like what Pol Pot had in mind. This shock and awe tactic helped create a climate of fear that cowed his political friends and foes, confused the civil society, silenced the church and both terrified and impressed his constituents. Duterte then courted, coopted, coerced, harassed and intimidated the local media into submission. For the few recalcitrant radio broadcasters, who reported on the corrupt activities committed by Duterte, he had them killed. With the media abdicating its role as the city watchdog, it eventually became a propaganda tool to project the image he wanted for himself. Duterte then pervaded such urban legends as riding his Harley at night to patrol the streets of Davao to promote his anti-crime image, or that tale where he allegedly asked a foreign tourist to chew on a cigarette butt to stress his supposed toughness in enforcing policy. (Well, more likely, what the people of Davao saw was, since Duterte was an insomniac, probably, he was just bar-hopping late at night with a girlfriend in tow, along with a retinue of heavily armed bodyguards. As to the poor tourist, probably, he just glanced at Duterte’s girlfriend of the day and Duterte, being jealous and insecure, made him chew on the cigarette to prove his machismo but only after making sure his bodyguards are close by. Possible, right?) Thereafter, having absolute control of the whole information apparatus, Duterte was able to turn the people of Davao City, including early critics and doubters, into believers and fanatics. To help explain how this is possible, just picture Kim Jung Un and the people of North Korea.

The Original Lie

As a prospective candidate for President, despite vehement denials early on, Duterte had his PR handlers design and surreptitiously launch in early 2015, a social media-based propaganda campaign to subtly promote him. Do you recall the online article, which reported that Davao City is the 4th safest city in the world? That online article was based solely on an online survey for those who visited the website and not on any extensive academic research by reputable institutions. But it came out at a time when people still believed everything that came out of the internet. So, when Duterte’s PR handlers fed this article to the mainstream media, it was naively swallowed as factual. Just a cursory check would’ve shown that Davao City isn’t even on the list of the top 1000 safest cities in the world. In fact, according to official statistics in December 2015, Davao City recorded the most murders and 2nd most rapes of all the cities in the country, making it actually the most dangerous city to live in. Great spin, right? Sadly, the media was complicit and didn’t even fact check it. Moreover, an army of fanatics from Davao andMindanao were quickly all over social media validating and affirming it with their own testimonials. With this, fake news in the Philippines was born.

To their credit, this original lie was very effective as propaganda that it was deeply embedded in the voter psyche all throughout the campaign in 2016. This myth was never busted. Hence, it became the refuge of the Duterte apologists back then whenever he would commit a blunder. They would simply say, “okay lang na bastos at palamura, basta gagawin nyang safest country ang Pilipinas the way na ginawa nya sa Davao.” No matter how simplistic that sounds now but it worked then.

The Totalitarian Project

As a newly elected President, Duterte applied the Davao City template to the letter. He shocked and awed with his war on drugs speeches and the more than 30,000 EJKs that followed. This, plus the detention of Sen. Leila De lima on purely fabricated charges, created a climate of fear that cowed both his political allies and foes, intimidated the courts, confused the civil society, silenced the church and both terrified and impressed the general public. They could end up in the constantly-updated narcolist, Duterte warned. As in Davao, he then courted, coopted, coerced, harassed and intimidated the national media into submission. The “recalcitrant” few like Rappler, Vera Files and PCIJ, are continuously harassed and would end up in moronic oust-Duterte matrices. The multiple cases filed against Rappler publisher, Maria Ressa, were done in case some other independent journalists missed the point.

Again, as in Davao, with the major media outfits abdicating their role as society’s watchdog, Duterte effectively transformed them into his own propaganda machine. He had them at his fingertips. Whenever he needs to inculcate an idea, float a proposal, deflect an issue, or simply just to entertain and connect with the general public, he simply calls for a press conference then rambles away. None of the mainstream media outfits would dare report anything negative about those speeches or anything negative about Duterte, period. As confided by some reporters and editors, the basic rule in news rooms right now is, absolutely, no negative news for Duterte, Bong Go and the administration in general. Otherwise, the fearful or coopted media owners and editors would block them.

All the while that this is happening in mainstream media, the Duterte social media machine was in full swing too, with paid influencers or trolls utilized as peddlers of propaganda, myths, anecdotes and fake news to expand and solidify their netizen base and trigger word-of- mouth circulation.

With the propaganda apparatus operating as designed, the totalitarian project is about to be taken to the next step. But then the 2019 elections happened and, now, things will change. In fact, it already did.

The 2019 Election silver lining

Believe it or not, despite the undeniably wholesale defeat of the opposition at the polls, there were so many positive takeaways that we, the enlightened Filipinos, can build on moving forward.

First, the Duterte cult image and following have been shattered. In the aftermath of the 2016 elections, the euphoria, optimism and conviction of the Duterte voters were so contagious, that almost all the Roxas, Poe and Binay voters were instantly converted. They hoped that Duterte, the so-called architect behind the “safest city in the world,” would indeed deliver on his promises. He is the One, his diehards claim. Well, that illusion is over now and it wasn’t even fun while it lasted. Regardless what the faux surveys say about his approval rating, the way Filipinos regarded him in June 2016, is much different than the way they regard him now.

While the spin masters and the uninitiated would claim that the election results reflected the dominance of the Duterte brand, most of the winners in the Senate race are already established names in politics, who would’ve won regardless of who is the sitting President they’re allied with. Also, Tolentino was the 13th placer in the 2016 race, so he is not really considered a newcomer. Therefore, only Bong Go and Bato Dela Rosa can be considered Duterte creations and alter egos. Other candidates that he or daughter Sara personally endorsed for the Senate, like Dong Mangudadatu, Jinggoy Estrada, Jiggy Manicad, Freddie Aguilar and Raffy Alunan, lost badly too. Even close ally and incumbent Senator JV Ejercito is in danger of losing his seat.

As to Bong Go, think about it, after pouring billions of pesos before and during the campaign; pressuring the LGUs to deliver their command votes; getting endorsements from major religious groups; and being personally campaigned for by a supposedly extremely popular incumbent president; he was only able to muster at most 44% of the vote.

Hypothetically, if the LGUs were neutral instead of delivering the command vote for the admin candidates, Bam Aquino would’ve easily ended up being in the top 6 and Mar Roxas in the top 12. Or, if you give the lesser known opposition candidates just a hundred million pesos each for their TV ads, they would’ve made it, too. Consider this, Gary Alejano, the Magdalo candidate, who was a relatively unknown name in national politics prior to the campaign, spent approximately three million pesos in TV ads and yet he garnered more than 4.5 million votes.

In sum, there was no Duterte factor in this elections, only the usual money politics in full display, plus the expected political pressure on the LGUs.

Second, the enlightened Filipinos are not afraid anymore. The initial impact of the shock and awe strategy has been shaken off. Individuals, civil society groups and sectors, including most elements of the Catholic Church, have openly and actively campaigned for the opposition not only because they believe it is patriotic but also because they believe it is the moral thing to do. For most, it is now the quintessential battle of Good vs. Evil.

Third, social media is not dominated by Duterte diehards anymore. Gone are the days when a netizen, who would dare criticize Duterte, would be swarmed, bullied and threatened by his blind followers. Of course, the paid trolls and diehard supporters are still roaming the public pages, but the regular netizens who were just carried away by the Duterte bandwagon early on, have either switched sides or have kept silent. As one former Duterte netizen aptly said:
“Nakakahiya at nakakapagod na kasi talaga sya depensahan.”

Fourth, regardless of the final outcome, Sen. Bam Aquino still garnered more than 14 million votes. That is still quite an impressive number considering the circumstances. More importantly, it could be a base that the opposition could build on for the political battles ahead.

The Way Forward

At this point, the enlightened Filipinos would ask, what do we do next?

First, we lick our wounds then stand up as soon as we can, in order to prepare for the next political round. There is no benefit or wisdom to gain from sulking and blaming. The situation is still precarious. Don’t assume for a second that Duterte and his minions are satisfied with the fame, money and power they have. No, they want more and, if possible, they want all. So, we have to remain vigilant. The threat of a nationwide Martial law/RevGov is always there. Then there are the likely moves for Cha-cha/Federalism; the continuing impunity and EJKs; the creeping invasion in the West Philippine Sea; the corruption of the Davao group, etc.

Second, we must unite and consolidate the opposition under Vice President Leni Robredo. She is not only a charismatic, intelligent, strong and very capable leader, but also the polar opposite of the immoral and amoral Duterte.

We must also build on and be inspired by the positives of the last elections as enumerated above. We are not alone anymore. The ranks of the enlightened have grown so much bigger. It is also quite significant that the polls showed that, generally, the middle class has already turned its back on Duterte. It could now become the backbone of the enlightened movement.

Third, we must continue to shatter the Duterte myth by spreading the truth. Social media is not Duterte’s playground anymore. Call out your Facebook friends for posting or sharing fake news. Inform, educate and enlighten your family, friends, co-workers, neighbors and everyone else who would care to listen. For reasons stated above, we should not continue to expect the mainstream media to be society’s watchdog anymore. It is on us now.

Fighting a tyrant is, without a doubt, a formidable task. No one ever said that it would be easy. But, unfortunately, we don’t have a choice. Watching from the sidelines as Duterte destroys our country, is not an option. Besides, right now, we have the motivation, the momentum, the time and, most importantly, we have the truth on our side. There’s one caveat, though. In our fight with the monster, we should not become monsters ourselves. Therefore, we should always take the high road and never be tempted to be like them. In doing so, all the killings and impunity, the oppression and persecution, the corruption and incompetence, the incivility and indecency, the deception and lies will stop with Duterte. This is the only way for us to redeem our national soul in 2022.


217 Responses to “A Message to the Enlightened Filipinos, by Senator Antonio F. Trillanes IV”
  1. Thank you Senator Trillanes.

    • Jose says:

      I agree with most of the issues raised in this post, especially the part where social media is no longer dominated by Duterte fanatics, they have dwindled quite a bit since 2016 , what I hate the most are the big TV news networks who succumbed to fear of the president especially gma news, they are so biased in favor of the admin , I no longer watch that TV station , lastly ,I agree that we should be more vigilant now, we are slowly but surely gaining grounds in this fight

  2. edgar lores says:

    1. I am glad that Senator Trillanes uses the dichotomy of enlightened and unenlightened. The divide, as I have noted, is a matter of the level of consciousness.

    2. This dichotomy is better resorted to because Filipinos are not divided by ideology as, say, Americans are. We don’t have a native liberal or conservative bias.

    3. Perhaps this terminology can be used henceforth. It is not pejorative as:

    o Elite vs. bobotantes – the divide is based on intelligence
    o Dilawan vs. DDS – the divide is based on political personalities
    o Democrats vs. authoritarians – the divide is based on need
    o Constitutional literates vs. constitutional illiterates – the divide is based on the rule of law
    o Practicing Catholics vs. non-practicing Catholics – the divide is based on adherence to religious tenets

    4. Having said the above, I wish the title of the article was “A Message to All Filipinos.” The divide in the level of consciousness between the enlightened and the unenlightened is not a permanent one. Many DDS have become woke through various triggers – the mountain of lies, the foul-mouth, the misogyny, the unkempt appearance, the penis monologues, the intrusion of the Chinese workers, the EJKs, the death of innocents.

    5. The Senator mentions the role of the LGUs. To me, this is primarily the barangay which serves as a micromanaging tool of the ruling powers. It is a control point, a choke point, of the life of the community in both rural and urban areas.

    6. I respectfully disagree with the Senator that “there was no Duterte factor in this elections.” The influence is not only reflected in the shutout of the opposition but also in the general conduct of the campaign and the elections. The early campaign. The excessive use of tarpaulins and giveaways. The use of government resources for Bong Go. The demeanor of the Comelec commissioners. The verdict on the Cayetano case. And many more.

    7. Duterte has been diminished but he still represents a potent force… in particular because he now controls the majority of the Senate. This is the battlefield for the next three years.

    8. I agree with the Senator’s points going forward.

    • popoy says:

      If it’s still in their files, I have written the Senator when he was referred to as AT4. May be I write here in topics, subject and context a few articles before. The decent and moral critical mass sways from half to minuscule fourth of the ruling influential in society. The other half or the devastating three-fourth of the critical mass– who are shamelessly corrupt, congenital violators of the Ten Commandments–constitute a significant percentage of the population for which biblically Jesus Christ had implored God: “Father Forgive them for they know not what they are doing”. They are not the people I have posted here in a previous blog.

    • shimu says:

      God is always with the righteous, we all knew who are the good and the bad guys in the neighborhood and he guides and protect them.

  3. idtitov says:

    Agree on all points Not as a Trillanes fanatic but believer that our time will come. Just so sad that the momentum of greatness halted once again. Sad the propaganda war worked on the most vulnerable and sad because many believed the lies to be the truth! Corrupt offcials are More abusive because they see no one really stays convicted. If so they Get to keep the money!

    Thank you Senator Trillanes God is always with you.

  4. Andres 2018. says:

    If it was me, i would not call my peers including my self as “the enlightened.” Much like when Tywin Lannister told Joffrey Baratheon that any man who say “I am the king” is no true king.

    Right now, PDuterte enjoys the super majority, like in PNoy’s time when he enjoyed the super majority. If PNoy & Co. was unseated, it is very much possible that PDuterte & Co can be too. However, as long as the people, or majority of it, are contented, then PDuterte & Co will keep the enjoyment.

    • I think he’s trying to distinguish between people of knowledge about politics and government, and people without. He’s not being elitist. Another reader said he should have addressed it ‘to all Filipinos’, and maybe he should have. It is a minor point in the context of the entire message.

    • “(Well, more likely, what the people of Davao saw was, since Duterte was an insomniac, probably, he was just bar-hopping late at night with a girlfriend in tow, along with a retinue of heavily armed bodyguards. As to the poor tourist, probably, he just glanced at Duterte’s girlfriend of the day and Duterte, being jealous and insecure, made him chew on the cigarette to prove his machismo but only after making sure his bodyguards are close by. Possible, right?)”

      I can speak to this personally, I ‘ve seen sex tourists in the Philippines that act like they own the Philippines just because they have money to spend. Sure I understand Americans may have gotten the wrap for this in the past , especially when Angeles and Olongapo were Tijuana city for troops there.

      But when I was there, it was mostly Europeans acting like this, Koreans too especially (but since they limited their buffonery in their own Korean owned establishments KTVs, less was witnesses by the public). And because of sex tourists acting like fools, local Filipino badasses (usually drunk, liquid courage) would also step in.

      My point, i’ve seen said video and I don’t think it was the “poor tourist” scenario, it was just one of those times, very much like that Little Finger and Cersei interaction earlier on,

      wherein Little Finger saying ‘knowledge is power’, so Cersei then answers ‘power is power‘ after giving very pointed examples to Little Finger. The “poor” tourist , probably his first time in the 3rd world, thought akin to Little Finger that ‘money is power’, DU30 like Cersei showed him that ‘power is power’.

      That’s how that cigarette butt eating story is best understood. And how DU30 is best understood. This narrative that he is some dumb goof is not helping anyone, hence why he’s always out manuevering the “enlightened” class. Give him his proper due.

      • Andres 2018 says:

        If it was me again, i would not include in the letter the above narrative you have qouted. Primarily because that scenario is very much made up, it is like a blemish to the entirety of the letter. Stating that the legend of PDuterte having the abusive tourist eat his cigarrete butt is a made up story to uphold the strongman image of PDuterte is enough, no need to make up another story to discredit the former. Afterall, an “enlightened” reader will surely understand the story behind the story.

        On another hand, lords of the great houses of Westeros including the Starks known for their honor and loyalty laughs at democracy.

        • Sup says:

          North Cotabato Gov.Manny Piñol was the writer ……

          “Witnesses said Duterte calmly sat beside the smoker, pulled out a snub-nosed .38 revolver and poked it at the man’s crotch. ‘Papiliin kita: barilin ko ang bayag mo, i-preso kita o kainin mo ang upos ng sigarilyo mo,’ Duterte reportedly told the smoker,” he added.

          Piñol said the smoker picked up his cigarette butt and swallowed it after apologizing to Duterte.

          Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/719038/davao-tourist-swallows-cigarette-butt-after-reprimand-from-duterte#ixzz5oWhNoW9E

          • I don’t think anyone’s claiming this story didn’t happen, Sup.

            I just think it needs to be understood as how DU30 operates, not as Trillanes’ is doing re-interpreted as some caricature. He is spinning it his way, which is not only a wrong re-telling of the story, but misses the whole point of why said story reverberates.

            DU30 made some dude eat his own cigarette butts. Whether a tourist abusing his status and buying power , or some shabu addict snatching your purse on the jeepney, DU30 supporters want this.

            Trillanes re-telling of the story falls flat. So why do it??? Do the “enlightened” really need to DU30 as “jealous and insecure” ??? What’s the value in Trillanes’ interpretation of said story?

            • Re-read Will’s article on Trillanes and how he refused to throw captured pirates overboard in the Navy, insisting they be brought to trial.

              Trillanes operates on completely different principles, I think.

              • Thanks. Corrected. Thanks as well for citing the pirate incident.

              • Ireneo,

                I’m sure Trillanes is a good dude, I’m just commenting on the message above— which is now giving me pause, where before I bought hook line and sinker that he’s the best you got there. His message is telling me, that he’s not really studying DU30 (too late).

                But we’re past the hump with DU30, we are just waiting for 2022.

                Question: can Trillanes defeat Sara Duterte???? He’s not talking to the masses, while Sara’s already got the masses going for her, she’s got momentum ; Trillanes is on defence.

                He’s gotta start talking to the masses, instead of the “enlightened” Filipinos. That’s my point.

            • By all indications, the Senator’s message resonates well with those who are pro-democracy, pro-civility. That it doesn’t resonate with you suggests your guesses are wrong. They are, after all, guesses based on presumptions based on information you don’t have.

              • It is not up to readers to respond to your endless tangential questions. Second advisory. Don’t fall back into old habits.

              • @LCX, Please note that Senator Trillanes’ staff replied to your earlier remark concerning the source of crime data. I’ve posted it in response to your comment.

              • Joe, these questions need not be answered (like edgar said to chempo in the God article), they are more ruminations. Questions to be asked to oneself. I don’t need them to be answered but if answered I’m happy too. 😉

  5. The rulers of the Dark continue to fight further enlightenment. Vice Ganda has called the woke woke-wokan, sarcastically. Is Kabayo more like a Tikbalang whose lighted cigarette makes one hope for a false dawn but stay in the night? Or rather is Duterte the Chief Tikbalang? How to avoid that power is now used to further keep the light from coming, to lengthen the Dark?

    • Even someone respected across all lines like Angel Locsin is subject to character assassination for a critical statement..

      ..will the push for total loyalty and conformity win, or the light of reason and tolerance?

  6. karlgarcia says:

    @Andres, If that is the way you put it, I take back what I said about agreeing with you on another blog. Before I agreed with your suggestion of the opposition to continue to make a statement.
    What is wrong with enlightenment?

    • Andres 2018 says:

      Nothing wrong with enlightenment at all. What i am trying to say is that, one should not claim a credit for himself even if it is properly due. The act of humility. Like what Jesus did when he is equal of god, he did not claim such equality.

  7. popoy says:

    ASVEN was few decades late, now it is High Time to revisit ASVEN and expand it tenfold.


  8. LG says:

    Thank you Sen. Trillanes for sharing your take on the recent elections and sending it to Joe. As well, to Joe for sharing it. Take care, be safe.

  9. chemrock says:

    I think the observation that the impact of the admin’s storm troopers that swarmed over the internet in 2016 has diminished is correct. Evidence the complete wipe out of Mocha Uson and her party list candidates.

    The good senator seems to play well the role of a good leader in defeat. Humility in defeat, absolve blame on electorate, rally the troops, pep talk to prevent despair, analyse the defeat, suggest a path forward, and very most importantly of all, as a true leader, give Hope for the next battle. A true leader I say.

  10. junrom says:

    it’s fashionable nowadays for one to avoid labeling voters as “bobotante”. we even reproach others for using the term. yet, inside, we honestly feel and believe somehow that voters deserve that label.

    80 or so years ago, the Nazi Party rose to power in Germany, with Hitler assuming the position of Chancellor, despite not getting the majority of votes. what followed was an era of propaganda, false information and bravado that indoctrinated an entire population save for a few resistors into a country of bigotry and war-lust. the reality of Nazi-effected economic plunder, war losses, genocide and atrocities was greeted by a general public with denial.

    do the above sound familiar? maybe not at the same scale. yet. just because our own people are ignorant or contemptuous of the lessons of history will not exempt them (and innocents) from bearing the consequences for their decisions. the only question remaining would be – what would the final cost be in human suffering and death?

  11. “In fact, according to official statistics in December 2015, Davao City recorded the most murders and 2nd most rapes of all the cities in the country, making it actually the most dangerous city to live in.”

    Where can we check this official stats, Joe? Is this from PNP or NBI, or a mix of collated stats??? I’ve been googling this ever since edgar introduced that “do you feel safe in your own neighborhood” poll. Which I said was oddly asked, to which chemp added there is a sense of quieting in the streets.

    It’s all “feelings” until we actually get our hands on official stats and understand how they were generated, ie. hopefully not by asking questions like, “Do you feel safe in your own neighborhood???”, with zero context. That’s just bad polling technique.


    • I have more to say on the above blog, but will wait until everyone has seen the 6th and final episode of Game of Thrones, as I do not want to spoil for anyone. The message feels to me like a backhanded slap to the masses, caressing their face first, then returning with a slap. Hence Tyrion’s message is timely.

      • Micha says:

        If life is nothing more than a perpetual zero-sum struggle for power marked by perpetual violence and cruelty and suffering, then it doesn’t make any sense. Planetary life – humanity in particular – stuck in that mode is not worth perpetuating.

        If we cannot do better than that, if we actually revel in a Game of Thrones plot, the whole life enterprise is nothing but sheer madness and it deserves to be totally wiped out from the face of the earth as it most probably would in the soon to culminate (or has already started in some parts) global warming catastrophe.

        • The finale episode wasn’t like the rest of the series, Micha. They ended it with the same tone you’re hitting in your above comment. Something better.

          On a personal note, although I can appreciate this “something better”, nature itself is about creative destruction.

    • karlgarcia says:



      The first link highlights how the Davao PNP belies Sen. Trillanes claim.
      They cite reasons beyond their control like murder cases are from drinking sprees and no time for timely Police response and it is impossible for police to witness rape.
      I am not satisfied with the justification by the way because everyone can give that very same explanation and would they expect people to just understand them?
      Why not admit that there was no police visibility is some areas?
      How come at the same time say that there is more police visibility now?

      The rappler link is an article Is your city safe, I guess this is what you were questioning, it would s is about understanding PNP crime statistics.

    • Thanks for the links, guys.

      My point about crime stats is that over here too this is a very contentious thing. County sheriffs and police chiefs attempt to hide or lower crime reporting, since property value thus local taxes are directly affected by said stats. Local government leaders also influence their police.

      We don’t have a national police, thus the FBI compiles the stats, being more objective, but based on local law enforcement reporting. So they can still be massaged.

      PNP chiefs in cities and towns would I’m sure be subject to similar pressures. So is there a more objective party that compiles the stats there?

      Another issue also is in the trends themselves.

      So murders by itself doesn’t tell us much? who’s getting killed , by whom? for example, the deaths in Chicago are mostly blacks and by blacks gangs; border towns here have more, but since they affect various jurisdictions they are parsed differently thus understood differently than how they should be understood.

      In the sunstar article, I agree with the PNP rep’s point about rape and it being a domestic phenomenon, like I’ve been saying here the propensity for incest over there. That’s not a crime issue, rather a cultural or societal one.

      IMHO, Trillanes’ message is better served explaining these crime stats better.

      But why the crime stats factors in, is because he is essentially attempting to undermine Davao residents’ support for DU30, but he’s doing so by insulting them, as mere drones of DU30, when they themselves can and have attested to how safe their city is.

      While Trillanes convinces them that it’s not. he’s barking up the wrong tree here.

    • @LCX, Senator Trillanes’ staff sent the following info:

      Dear Sir:

      This refers to one of the comments on your blog entry re: the article written by Sen. Trillanes, inquiring on the source of information of Sen. Trillanes regarding Davao City having the most number of murder cases and 2nd on rape cases. To answer the said inquiry, attached is a compilation of news articles published on 1 April 2016 on the matter. Based on these articles, the data came from the PNP.

      We hope we have answered the said inquiry.

      Thank you

      Click to access 2cities-with-the-highest-number-of-index-crimes-cy-2010-2015.pdf

      Click to access screenshot-of-news-re-index-crimes.pdf

      • LOL! karl and Joe, I guess I do have some FOI pull after all (w/out knowing, Lol!). Thanks to Trillanes staff.

        Question: Who’s doing the murdering??? if like the drug war over there, it’s state sponsored (or city mayor sponsored back then), then ask if civilians are getting killed, or mostly criminals???

        Over here, it’s usually street gangs, ie. Chicago; cartel gangs, in the border towns down south Mexico related; recently police are now seeing patterns in homeless murders in socal. So numbers is good but context is better when it comes to crime stats,

        Who’s getting killed??? If civilians, regular citizens are getting killed then that’s a safety issue for sure; if criminals are the ones getting off’ed then that’s more an EJK issue, which would loop us back to the EJKs discussion— i’d rather not rehash.

        As for rape, who’s getting raped??? I remember in Cebu City rich boys would hire prostitutes or convince school girls on dates and they went to town with them. That’s a public safety issue;

        but if as that sunstar article explained, these rapes are happening inside homes with males familial to the females raped, that’s not really a law enforcement issue anymore, that’s societal.

        Like i’ve said here before OFWs mom or sister or aunts gone, males stay home, usually Red Horse is involved, and incest. I’ve said it again and again incest is a big problem there.

        Between the murders and rape, rape/incest is probably the biggest issue, but unless you have office, school or bar rapes, in public , by strangers, that constitutes a public menace; what happens at home is not really a police matter— take report, punish after, but deterrence of incest rape is more cultural than legal.

        Maybe DU30 can apply his EJKs here, I know he had plans to castrate males there.

        Murders, I’d really like to know if it’s just more EJKs (state sanctioned) or actual public safety (by gangs or individual nuts). Murders is a law enforcement issue.


        • sonny says:

          Then LC, we (readers) should have more imagination and increase our sort parameters. 🙂

        • karlgarcia says:

          I apologize for reading this late.
          LCX, just so you know the senator read your comment and I learned about it too late due to certain circumstances. Anyways, they provided the articles that tells us the source.
          It is apparent from your comments below that you are not satisfied because you still have many questions that you stated that required no answer.

  12. caliphman says:

    Andres, if you are truly a troll then I appreciate that many times your posts distinguish you as one of the more enlightened ones. Regardlless of whether one refers to the mass of Filipino voters as bobotantes, deceived, or (maybe less pejoratively) unenlightened, and a more aware minority enlightened does little to change the facts on the ground. That is if these voters continue believing and trusting in Duterte and are not swayed that they have just been been lied to or manipulated, then they will continue to keep him in power. In the same way, not using the term ‘elite’ in lieu of enlightened for this supposedly more perceptive minority probably does not change much except avoid unseemingly elevating oneselves as a small group superior to everyone else.

    If shattering the Duterte myth is the way to go forward, one must must be careful not to start off by branding Filipinos as a minority of enlightened oppositionists and a mass majority of more easily deceived regime supportters. As Trillanes says, its not going to be easy. Its one thing to be right, its another thing to sway the masses convincingly that they are wrong.

    • One is inclined to wonder who is the bigger elitist, the yellow who sneers at the stupidity (lack of knowledge, more accurately) of the masses, or the DDS who recognizes the lack of knowledge exists and games it for advantage through lies, fake news, and name-calling. The first is a passive complaint, the second a positive act, a use of the disadvantaged.

  13. caliphman says:

    I am saying as I think so does Trillanes that name calling wether it be bobotante or elitist or yellow is not a persuasive way to make Duterte’s supporters see the ‘light’.

  14. Noli says:

    Please translate to filipino for the rest ( most) of our countrymen who may not understand english !

  15. caliphman says:

    Maybe so. However politics is about winning hearts and minds. It is not a picnic nor a fair sport and almost by nature it is dirty.It requires understanding what voters want and promising it. In my opinion, Duterte reached the pinnacle of capturing the hearts and not so much voter’s minds. Manipulation, lying, trickery and other such accusations all infer duping gullible minds but I am convinced supporters Duterte and Trump continue to be followers not because their minds were fooled but they have the leadership style that resonates with them
    And yes, I believe Duterte is building an evil empire but his cadre of die hard DDS propagandists and manipulators now have a much more minor role in sustaining his regime given gis entrenched popularity and his continuing consolidation of political power.

  16. madlanglupa says:

    There is no mention of the VACC in this article at all, although VACC bosses Jimenez and Diño engineered the idea of putting PRRD to power. Why? They clearly want a police state and a Marcos restoration.

  17. O.K. here goes my wider response to Trillanes’ message. Using the finale show of Game of Thrones as analogy.

    Sam Tarly: “Um, ahem Why just us? Um– We represent all the great houses, but whomever we choose, they won’t just rule over lords and ladies. Maybe the decision about what’s best for everyone should be left to well, everyone.”

    [ALL LAUGHING] “Maybe we should give the dogs a vote as well.”
    “I’ll ask my horse.”


    Let’s face it, the Philippines is Westoros and Sam Tarly’s bright idea is the stuff of jokes. The masses are only useful there because they can vote. On one hand Trillanes tells us they are not stupid; but on the other hand he compares them to North Koreans, mindless drones.

    I can totally see Trillanes himself also laughing had he been there after Sam’s pitched his idea of democracy in Westoros. I’m more than disappointed with his message, if it was for private dissemination then I’d agree with it; but it’s addressed to the public.

    Thus, also an open insult to the masses (which supports DU30). The other side of the letter, unintended or not. Rationalized, justified, spun however way, this is also a message to the masses.

    Trillanes needs to watch and re-watch last Sunday’s finale episode.


    There were three main take aways in the very last episode of the Game of Thrones:

    1. Tyrion talking to John Snow, about Daenerys’ pattern ever since. Here’s the transcript,

    Tyrion: “Would you have done it? What? You’ve been up there, on a dragon’s back.
    You’ve had that power. Would you have burned the city down?”

    Jon Snow: “I don’t know.”

    Tyrion: [SCOFFS] “Yes, you do.
    You won’t say because you don’t want to betray her but you know.”

    Jon Snow: “What’s it matter what I’d do?”

    Tyrion: “It matters more than anything.
    When she murdered the slavers of Astapor, I’m sure no one but the slavers complained.
    After all, they were evil men.
    When she crucified hundreds of Meereenese nobles, who could argue? They were evil men.
    The Dothraki khals she burned alive? They would have done worse to her. Everywhere she goes, evil men die and we cheer her for it.
    And she grows more powerful and more sure that she is good and right.
    She believes her destiny is to build a better world for everyone.
    If you believed that if you truly believed it, wouldn’t you kill whoever stood between you and paradise? [JON INHALES DEEPLY] I know you love her.
    I love her too.
    Not as successfully as you.
    But I believed in her with all my heart.
    Love is more powerful than reason…
    You are the shield that guards the realms of men.
    And you’ve always tried to do the right thing.
    No matter the cost, you’ve tried to protect people.
    Who is the greatest threat to the people now? It’s a terrible thing I’m asking. It’s also the right thing.
    Do you think I’m the last man she’ll execute? Who is more dangerous than the rightful heir to the Iron Throne?”

    2. Drogon melts the Iron Throne.

    Daenerys: “I can’t.”

    Jon Snow: “You can.
    You can forgive all of them, make them see they made a mistake.
    Make them understand.
    Please, Dany.”

    Daenerys: “We can’t hide behind small mercies.
    The world we need won’t be built by men loyal to the world we have.
    The world we need is a world of mercy…
    It’s not easy to see something that’s never been before.
    A good world.”

    Jon Snow: “How do you know? How do you know it’ll be good?”

    Daenerys: “Because I know what is good.
    And so do you.”

    Jon Snow: “I don’t.”

    Daenerys: “You do. You’ve always known.”

    Jon Snow: “What about everyone else? All the other people who think they know what’s good.”

    Daenerys: “They don’t get to choose.
    Be with me.
    Build the new world with me.
    This is our reason.”

    3. The new Small Council lead by the Hand (again it’s Tyrion but now as punishment), they get to choose what’s good for everyone. Bronn, Davos, Sam & Brienne make up the Small Council.

    “Ser Bronn of the Blackwater, Lord of Highgarden, Lord Paramount of the Reach and Master of Coin, would you say the crown’s debt to you has been paid?”

    “In full, my lord Hand.”

    “Good. Time to start incurring a new one.
    We have hungry people to feed.
    Can we expect some assistance in this regard?”

    BRONN: “Indeed we can.”

    “Lord Davos, we have an armada to rebuild and ports to repair.”

    “We have.”

    “These projects will begin as soon as the Master of Coin and Lord of Lofty Titles provides funding.
    The Master of Coin looks forward to helping the Master of Ships, but first he has to ensure we’re not wasting coin, or soon there won’t be no more coin.”

    “Any more.”

    ” You Master of Grammar now too? Grandmaester, ahem, it is my theory, based on my years of work on the Casterly Rock sewers, that clean water leads to a healthier population.”

    “The Archmaester has done some research on this subject and it turns out– The strong live and the weak don’t.”

    “Find the best builders and set them to the task.”

    BRONN: “Oh, speaking of builders, all the best brothels burned down.
    The Master of Coin is willing to fund reconstruction.”

    SAMWELL: “Uh the Archmaester is less than enthusiastic about the salutary effects of brothels.”

    BRONN: “Well, I imagine he isn’t using them properly.”

    BRIENNE: “I think we can all agree that ships take precedence over brothels.”

    BRONN: “I think that’s a very presumptuous statement.” …


    1. Study people’s patterns, don’t make them fit into caricatures of them in your own mind, you’ll be able to predict them better, thus out-maneuver. Stab in the heart.

    2. Iron Throne, is the status and power. Burn it, melt it, follow Drogon’s example. Filipino politicians need to steal, its tradition; OKAY fine, have ’em steal all they can in their first two years of office, once they gorge themselves then it’s time to work, work for the people and the public good. For the nation.

    3. Rule as a group, have fun doing it. Laugh and argue.


    The finale episode is the nullification of the whole series. The message to everyone is that the Game of Thrones is a joke, melt the Iron Throne. The hero is Drogon.

    Practical applications:

    1. Is DU30 Jon or Dany??? How about Sara Duterte??? How about Trillanes???

    2. Which of them will melt the Iron Throne???

    3. Which of them, all Filipino politicians for that matter, is able to govern wisely and enjoyably, most importantly, to understand the others’ understanding of what’s “good”???

  18. edgar lores says:


    1. LCpl_X: *quotes Davao tourist story*

    2. Andres 2018: ”If it was me again, i would not include in the letter the above narrative you have quouted. Primarily because that scenario is very much made up, it is like a blemish to the entirety of the letter. “

    3. Sup: *publishes news item on “made-up” scenario*

    4. LCpl_X: ”I don’t think anyone’s claiming this story didn’t happen, Sup.”

    5. Senator Trillanes: ”[Third,] we must continue to shatter the Duterte myth by spreading the truth.”

  19. Sup says:

    O.T..This will happen when you complain with ICC

    MANILA, Philippines – Former Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales was refused entry to Hong Kong and will be deported after immigration authorities there held her at the airport.

    Morales’ camp confirmed this to Rappler on Tuesday, May 21.

    Morales arrived at the Hong Kong airport 11 am on Tuesday. She was with her husband, son, daughter-in-law and two grandchildren for a vacation. Filipinos enjoy visa-free entry to Hong Kong.

    Morales was not allowed out of the airport for “immigration reasons.” She was asked to board a 6 pm Philippine Airlines (PAL) flight back to Manila.

    Morales will return with her family.

    Morales and former foreign affairs secretary Albert Del Rosario filed in March a communication against Chinese President Xi Jinping before the International Criminal Court (ICC) over China’s maritime violations in the West Philippine Sea. – Rappler.com


  20. karlgarcia says:

    Now she tells us. Why did Pia Cayetano not tell this to her face during the campaign?


  21. Renato Vicente says:

    This is a very eloquent statements from the only person that Duterte tried to silence but always failed. Sen. Trillanes is a fighter and as such silencing him was the objective of Duterte Regime, but to his diismay, always failed. Sen. Trillanes is one step ahead of him. It was proven and Duterte, being a failed bully, retreated and kept silence but be aware he’s only awaiting the proper time to silence him and again failure is with him because many of the voters are starting to realize the real personality of this person whose ideology is only vengeance. I’be been waiting for Sen. Trillanes to appear and he did in a very calm manner despite the horrible show of intimidation by the Administration. You are not alone Senator Trillanes.

  22. Before I get banned again, I feel I need to explain my position here.

    I have nothing against Trillanes, and I do hope he runs against Sara Duterte in 2022, or works with her to ensure she is better than her father (Trillanes as Ramos).

    I’m simply pushing back on the message posted above, three in particular:

    1. The cigarette butt eating story.

    2. The crime stats as proof of unsafe Davao.

    3. The poor are not stupid , they are just North Korean drones.

    My point in highlighting the above is the masses (dirty, stupid, unenlightened, whatever you wanna label them as, or DDS or immoral, etc.) have processed 1-3 already, and they’ve lent considerable support for,

    1. EJKs

    2. quiet streets

    3. embraced their “unenlightened” role

    Now the question is how do you counter 1-3, by re-telling with another twist , OR (or, or, or, or… that’s for emphasis ) offer something better (that’s thanks to Micha).

    What is Trillanes’…

    1. _________________

    2. _________________

    3. _________________

    (fill in the blanks)

    Have a different 1-3, don’t try to convince the masses that how they understand 1-3 above is wrong, thus they are wrong. That’s the wrong way of doing this. Offer something better.

    Talk to the masses, convince them that you are something better.

    I’ll end here, before Joe bans me again, and await the next blog subject. 😉

    (to Trillanes’ staff, read this: http://www.orwell.ru/library/essays/politics/english/e_polit )

    • Kindly explain the Orwell attachment. It is thick and ponderous and it is impudent to think a Senator’s staff should take the time to read it searching for some unknown wisdom. I found the attachment almost unintelligible.

      • ps, please consider that you have been granted the honor of the Senator’s attention and represent the blog in kind.

        • Absolutely, Joe… and I hope they read this as constructive criticism, not trolling.

          Here’s the main paragraph I’d want them to focus on, but the rest I wish they’d read carefully,

          “The inflated style itself is a kind of euphemism. A mass of Latin words falls upon the facts like soft snow, blurring the outline and covering up all the details. The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one’s real and one’s declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish spurting out ink. In our age there is no such thing as ‘keeping out of politics’. All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred, and schizophrenia. When the general atmosphere is bad, language must suffer. I should expect to find — this is a guess which I have not sufficient knowledge to verify — that the German, Russian and Italian languages have all deteriorated in the last ten or fifteen years, as a result of dictatorship.”

          Over here, when a rebuttal speech is accorded, like after a State of the Union speech; or a concession speech after one has lost, which is how i’m reading this message… I have never heard a similar speech to the public, to rebut or to concede, addressing only the “enlightened” Americans (it’s very presumptuous , and divisive). Have you , Joe?

          Then add some lasciviousness to a story understood already by the masses as an example of EJK (or EJP, for Extra Judicial Punishment?). Counter-productive.

          The crime stats issue I’m on the fence, but I’m somewhat bothered that Trillanes’ staff has no access to official stats for themselves instead have to rely on news reports of it. Hence, why i’m asking details on the murders and rape numbers, these are gov’t stats, gov’t folks should have their own inside knowledge on it— not be dependent on news sources.

          Except for the crime stats, I’m reading the flaw in the message as more a language issue, Joe, and why I linked to that Orwellian classic.

          • p.s.

            Me and edgar agree (read his original number 4), I’m just pushing back on it tougher is all, Joe. With 3 specific points.

          • karlgarcia says:

            Who told you that they did not have access to PNP crime stats?
            You talk about twisting yet in discussing with us, you twist our words not only once but many times.
            I try to accommodate and be patient you even if I had moments of short fuseness with you, then you put your own twist in our responses.

  23. edgar lores says:

    This thread is unreal.

    • Yes, I agree. Well, you might try to bring it back on course. I don’t have the time or emotional energy.

      • I think most readers are more interested in the Senator’s take, and not what commenters think. There is some solace in that.

      • edgar lores says:

        Just briefly then on LCpl_X’s three points and one other.

        1. The cigarette butt eating story. It is well-known that Duterte follows the Rule of Power rather than the Rule of Law. I suppose there is merit in drawing a parallel to the latest TV saga. But this is neither an original insight nor a great one.

        2. The crime stats as proof of unsafe Davao. This has been adequately addressed by the Senator’s staff.

        3. The poor are not stupid, they are just North Korean drones. Gross miscomprehension and false equivalence here. The Senator did not use the term “drones” much less “mindless drones.” He simply suggested that people can be turned into “believers and fanatics” by an autocratic leader who has “absolute control of the whole information apparatus.” If there is any disrespect at all, it is directed at the autocratic leader and regime and not at the people.

        4. Re Sara without an “h.” Why the advocacy of an unworthy daughter to succeed an unworthy father?

        4.1. To ask the Senator to consider playing Ramos to Sara’s candidacy is not only incredibly insensitive but grossly offensive. Duterte and his minions have been doing their best to put the Senator behind bars.

        • Thank you. Nice. Concise. LCX is back in moderation because I’m tired of quibble.

        • 1. I agree, edgar. Rule of Power vs. Rule of Law has been prosecuted in two nationwide elections there (Filipinos want Rule of Power), so why introduce “bar girls” into the story??? It’s done, the people have chosen Rule of Power.

          2. It’s not proof of anything. If the murders were done by DU30 and his thugs, then its proof of EJKs not lack of safety, again Davao and Mindanao support Duterte, how do you square that fact???

          3. “Duterte was able to turn the people of Davao City, including early critics and doubters, into believers and fanatics. To help explain how this is possible, just picture Kim Jung Un and the people of North Korea.” Again, it presupposes that his supporters have been co-oped , thus unable to think for themselves— it nullifies the very reasons for their support of him. Understand why they support him is my point.

          4. Otso Diretso was shut out, edgar. In the worst way possible. If you know anyone else that will win in 2022, do share. I’m simply saying Sara is now poised for the Presidency. It’s hers for the taking.

          4.1 If Trillanes is really serious about saving the Philippines, he can fight them head on (which I ‘m sure he’ll lose given his numbers in the last election), or offer an olive branch to Sara , i’ve been googling her and she’s not her dad.

          If you read my Game of Thrones re-hash slash analogy above, you’d put this under the third point,

          “3. Which of them, all Filipino politicians for that matter, is able to govern wisely and enjoyably, most importantly, to understand the others’ understanding of what’s “good”???”

    • Of note, I’ve deleted two abusive and threatening comments from different people but originating from the same network in Amsterdam (RIPE). I imagine these are hunters assigned the task of harassing the Senator.

    • Sup says:

      I suspect that LCpl_X (@LCpl_X) is secretly working for Duracell or National batteries, he is draining every wireless mouse……… :-).

  24. Atty. Inocentes A. Tecala says:

    This article by Sen. Trillanes s at best sour grapes for the defeat
    of the opposition n the last election.
    The truth s that a great majority
    of Filipinos believe n Pres. Duterte’s
    leadership resulting n the election
    of 12 senators endorsed by him.
    It s a very long article devoid
    of any significant meaning.
    He writes about the same issue/issues against Pres. Duterte
    which have been discarded by a majority of Filipinos when they elected him President n 2016.
    Trillanes wrote the article out of
    desperation due to the outcome of
    the election where no opposition
    candidate was elected.
    No sensible Filipino would believe
    Sen. Trillanes no matter what he says.
    I for one knows he is a rebel without a cause. All his tirades
    against Pres. Duterte r unfounded
    and baseless.
    Would b better for Sen. Trillanes
    to just act like any freedom loving
    Filipino and respect our electoral
    What he needs to do and this
    Includes those of his followers
    to respect the result of the election
    and not rehash the same unfounded
    and baseless accusations against
    Pres. Duterte which the voters discarded as unworthy n the 2016
    Let us move on and stop all
    attacks on our President duly elected by the Filipino people.
    We must accept defeat n clean and honest election and try our best to win n succeeding elections.
    Mabuhay si Pres. DUTERTE. Support
    him and his program for good government.
    Atty. Inocentes Almendras Tecala

    • Thank you for the contrary view. I find it consistent with the administration’s insistence that any opposing view is inherently wrong and offensive, rather than respectful of the idea that democracy is vibrant and healthy when it allows everyone a voice so citizens can choose on their own which voice to listen to.

    • Sup says:

      Would it not be better if you were based in the Philippines and started defending poor prisoners pro bono instead of getting rich in the USA mister Tecala?

  25. Sup says:

    We need people like Trillanes for things like this.
    Cop shot dead after attending court hearing in Cebu City

    CEBU CITY—A policeman was shot dead while driving his motorcycle along Pope John Paul II Avenue in Barangay Mabolo, Cebu City on Tuesday afternoon.

    Lt. Col. Delfin Bontuyan was just a few meters away from the Cebu City Hall of Justice when four men on board two motorcycles shot him at past 2 p.m.

    Bontuyan, 55, and a resident of Barangay Talamban in Cebu City, suffered gunshot wounds on his head, nape, and back.

    Police investigators said the policeman just came from a hearing of a drug case where he stood as the complainant.

    “He was on his way home when he was shot,” they said.

    Bontuyan served as an officer of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group in Central Visayas (CIDG-7).

    In 2016, Bontuyan was assigned at the Cordillera Autonomous Region and was subsequently transferred to Jolo, Sulu where he was assigned as chief of a police station.

    Bontuyan came back to Cebu to attend a court hearing.

    On Election Day, his daughter Christine, Sangguniuang Kabataan chairperson of Talamban, claimed to be harassed by policemen.

    “The father of the girl who makes the post about being harassed by (policemen) was murdered today. Yesterday, he was approached by CIDG who asked him what his relationship is to Christine Bontuyan who was harassed by police during Election Day. Today he was shot and killed,” said Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña in a post on Facebook

    Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1121670/cop-shot-dead-after-attending-court-hearing-in-cebu-city#ixzz5obW3pYTz


  26. Butch Silverio says:

    Sen Trillanes is a light shining in the darkness that engulfs us.

  27. Wilmyr says:

    Haha frustrated trillanes.. Best in making story as fairy tale..trillanes statement is purely imagination and hatred because he did not get what he wanted.. Vested interest.

  28. Andres 2018. says:

    Sen. Trillanes and Co. indeed understand how PDuterte was put into power.

    Propaganda via social media. LGU command votes. Block voting of a religious organization.

    Sen. Trillanes also mentioned of “what do we do next?” This is the thing that interest me the most, the hows.

    Healing and preparation. Unite and consolidate under VP Robredo. Propaganda against PDuterte’s myth via social media.

    It seems these three years prior to 2022 is a battle of propaganda via social media.

    It is clear that Sen. Trillanes is implying that there will be someone from the group that will battle against PDuterte’s anointed in this coming 2022 election. Could it be Sen. Trillanes himself? or VP Robredo? Against Inday? or Bongbong?


    Propaganda: social media is for all, its even.

    LGU command votes: the current administration has an advantage, points for PDuterte and Co.

    Religion sect block votes: well, they will choose the one topping the surveys, so they are the nail to the coffin, but since currently PDuterte is positive on people’s eyes, another points for PDutete and Co.

    Backing of great families: this goes to PDurte and Go., the undying Marcos loyalists are with him, plus many more.

    The People: they will choose depending on their contentment. Are they contented of what they are under PDuterte? Then, its a point for PDuterte and Co. However, they are human, the contentment limit is endless. This would be difficult for PDuterte and Co., points for Sen. Trillanes and Co.

    This bring into the argument of “The People.” If PDuterte and Co. will destroy the Philippines as what Sen. Trillanes and Co. are more or less implying, then, PDuterte and Co. will surely lost on “The People.” Meaning, PDuterte and Co. will do them best to impress the people, improve the current status of the country, fill the people’s limitless contentment.

    In short, i strongly believe that PDuterte and Co. will try to work for the betterment of the people. Because if they don’t, they will lost the 2022.

    • Nice assessment. I tend to agree. Carpio-Duterte, Robredo, Poe, Lacson. Robredo’s style is appealing to many, as her rise to the VP win showed. If Trillanes is seen as too polarizing, he’d not be on the ticket. He might be Sec of Defense. New ball game.

      • edgar lores says:

        The Filipino propensity for strongman figures would work in Senator Trillanes’ advantage.

        He won a Senate seat from a jail cell.

        He is the only one who has gone head-to-head with Duterte (and his minions) in several sets and is he still playing.

        He is composed, courageous, and unafraid.

        • karlgarcia says:

          And one more thing, he is not overly sensitive. I remenber him saying that one can not afford to be sensitive in times like these.
          I should learn from the Senator.

          • NHerrera says:

            Andres, Joe, edgar, Karl:

            I share the averaged or integrated sentiment expressed in your comments. Indeed, there is that saying about reaching a summit: there is an innate instability in that situation, both from a physical and historical-political points of view. That is why, in my opinion the slowdown in the GDP growth in the last quarter — not necessarily all from domestic sources — is important. If it worsens, the instability and consequent political change are hastened; the negative aspects of the Administration who now virtually controls all branches of the government will be magnified as happened in the later years of the Marcos’ regime due to a failing economy.

            • karlgarcia says:

              Let us look at the 2nd quarter report if the election spending could pull up gdp growth, if not then there really is a problem.Election spending was a no factor in the 1st quarter, maybe the late spenders could pull it Even if people would care less about GDP, it is important to some people especially the investors, foreign or local.

    • Micha says:

      “In short, i strongly believe that PDuterte and Co. will try to work for the betterment of the people. Because if they don’t, they will lost the 2022.”

      One, I wonder how PDuterte might actually do that when he has said in crisp clear language that “put… ina, kung mahirap ka, mag tiis ka.”

      Two, one thing is quite sure, PDuterte and Co. will work for the betterment of PDuterte and Co.

      Three, it is rather easy to impress the impressionable voters. You don’t necessarily have to work for their betterment to win an election. Just string some lies or false promises here and there and you’re good to do a Bong Go.

      • Andres 2018. says:

        For how long PDuterte and Co can keep on impressing the voters?

        Propaganda is everywhere, coming from all sides.

        Without hard results, it would be difficult to keep the impression.

        What is worst is the failed expectation.

        Failed expectation plus a propaganda to fuel it up is a strong political weapon.

        PDuterte and Co needs to deliver results. Results that the people can felt directly, not some 10% increase in GDP where the common people could care not.

        • Micha says:

          “For how long PDuterte and Co can keep on impressing the voters?”

          As long as the voters are impressionable.

          Think about this, has there been a marked or genuine improvement in the economic lives of the people generally in the last 3 years of PDuterte which can be attributed as the major factor in the election of his endorsed candidates for the Senate?

          • “The poor get more respect now” is what I heard from a Duterte supporter here, abroad.

            What makes them think that is another question, but obviously this is one emotional need fulfilled, the need to feel respected or at least not ignored by perceived elitists and snobs.

  29. caliphman says:

    Andres, I do not think Trillanes is questioning that Duterte has all the aces stacked in his favor. That right now after this election he is in a more powerful position than ever. The long recitation on who wins in a head to head contest is unnecessary and does not support your brief ending opinion that Duterte is intent and will do what is best for the Philippines and the Filipino people. This is the crux of the issue. I dispute that and so does Trillianes and so this is what you need to show.

  30. NHerrera says:


    I had an early morning breakfast of pancakes and coffee at a McDonald’s with a complementary Inquirer. The paper’s headline reads: “New Senators: We’re No Rubber Stamp.” The accompanying photo of the 12 elected senators is the interesting item — all except Poe and Binay sporting the “fist salute.”

    Good morning to you, TSH readers.

  31. chemrock says:

    The Bikoy drama is scary . I sound post-fact intelligent, which is a claim of false credits, but I’ve had my doubts about this guy. For me, the give-away was his claim that Go also has a tattoo on hos back. This gives Go the opportunity to strip for all to see and thus imprint on careless minds that Paolo obviously doesn’t have a tattoo either.

    Good thing Trillanes had kept his distance from Bikoy.

    But this drama is scary. Whilst previously all Duterte had was ad hominems, foreign intelligence, matrix — he now has something ‘solid’ or concrete to base his actions on. We have to understand, based on his own admissions, he is a master at creating evidences and plots to hang his proponents.

    • karlgarcia says:

      The senator kept his distance but Bikoy and the Dutertes are implicating him.

      • chemrock says:

        If it’s true Bikoy is Duterte’s instrument, then the dumbfuck doesn’t know his days are numbered. This plot is so serious, it’s not the Trillanes bank account joke. So called incriminating evidence will be extracted from him publicly and then his usefulness is over, he becomes a huge liability. I give his lifespan another 6 months.

    • NHerrera says:


      If “Game of Thrones” has not ended with the showing of its last episode, we can say: move over GoT, we have a real life and better “Game” here in the PH — the Bikoy Game.

      Here is a math equation, a corollary — among others — to this BG:

      AET/D5 = GBT/T

      Know what that is?

      Addendum: add to this the fight of the mf elephants chempo referred to below, and we have a very exciting game.

  32. chemrock says:

    Going forward post election, if Duterte thinks he will have a free hand now that the Dilawans out-casted, he will be blindsided by new axis. The long knives are out and Marcos and GMA groups are digging in for the battle to come.

    And while these mf elephants fight, the ground and the people suffers.

    • karlgarcia says:

      I resisted the GOT bandwagon for this thread, but I guess it really is GOT where ever and when ever.

    • caliphman says:

      If the long knives are out, its more likely not to oust a sitting Duterte from his ‘throne’ but to jockey as to who might be next in line at the feeding trough, or to be his ‘hand’, or another Duterte is waiting in the wings, to succeed him. Game of Thrones was a fascinating and entertaining TV series but its hardly a guide for discerning or navigating the utter chaos and fireboding future of Duterte’s evil empire. Its a silly and escapist fantasy but whats happening to the Phiilippines is grim, all too real, and hardly amusing to those who will have to live in the middle of it. For my taste, I have GOT enough of GOT already.

      • Life was usually not pleasant for those caught between the fronts of real power struggles between the European political dynasties that are called nobility or aristocracy. The fairy tales or fantasy stories today just make them look better than they really were. Exceptions like Braveheart which show the cruelty and cowardice of many a “nobleman” are rare. Well I did get to watch some Czech fairy tales on German TV in the 1980s, interesting because they were produced in a socialist country so the stories were of strong peasant men and beautiful peasant maidens, while the villains were often dark knights out to exploit. We are shaped by the narratives we grow up with and those we imbibe throughout our lives. Certain assumptions we make about life are sometimes shaped by the more naive of narratives..

        But the rules of power are the same even without kings, as the “Death of Stalin” movie shows. Looking at numerous power struggles including some in democratic political parties, it can be extremely complicated. Direct children of the leader can be exiled like Stalin’s kids – or the daughter of Prime Minister Franz Josef-Strauss of Bavaria, who allegedly has her father’s calculating nature but NOT his populist charm, so a certain cabal shut her out, they say here. Skillful politicians like Khrushchev, who like Lacson today managed to be loyal yet “critical” at times, can be more astute at winning the games of new alliances than lapdogs. Highly tainted lapdogs like Berija (or Bato later) may end up sacrificed so the rest of the group can save face, much like Romania’s communist turncoats sacrificed Ceausescu to allegedly appear cleaner than they really were. Someone from the outer part of the inner circle may be seen as a “savior” later – this might be what Poe and Binay are hoping for. Ramos was in that role after 1986, for some. Lapdog General Ver went with his master.

        • Yet the Filipino seems to be easily caught up in the narrative of the moment.

          I cringed when Conrado de Quiros called PNoy “Aragorn” before the 2010 elections. Please.

          I cringe more when I read that Lito Lapid won because of “Ang Probinsyano”. Dear heavens.

          • sonny says:

            PiE, requesting permission to park the origin of Byzantium (313 AD to Istanbul 1453 AD) as the archetype of our modern world order. (Thoughts came by accident) 🙂

          • karlgarcia says:

            Narratives we grew up with and narratives of the moment.
            The former shapes us and the latter makes us shapeshifters.

        • edgar lores says:

          Sharp insights.

        • chemrock says:

          I like “we are shaped by narratives we grow up with “. Explains a lot why many still like Marcos . Their explanation always go like this. Oh you don’t know anything, you’re not there. My mom used to say this and that….

          Lapdog Ver reincarnation is lapdog Bato.

      • chemrock says:

        I agree it’s gonna be jockeying. They don’t have the guts to go head-on against Duterte.

  33. NHerrera says:


    Indeed, why bother with GoT fantasies when we are living the real-world fantasy populated by KJU, Putin, Trumplike leaders, Bato, etc.

    When we add to that cast of characters the current earth’s cycle of tectonic plate adjustments in conjunction with the skyscrapers in Metro Manila, and looming very disastrous effects of the current climate change and plausible nuclear war, we have indeed one great fantasy.

    And thus, I envy you fellows (in a generic sense — should really use “guys and dolls”): with appropriate selection and moderation of your diet and some exercise, you may yet see at least the fringes of the denouement from this current real-life fantasy cycle.

    Talk about food: if the swine fever epidemic in China hits hard, the world’s pigs will be drawn to that destination — China.

    And so I come to this while on the subject of pigs: in my youth, on my way home, passing through then Azcaraga corner Quezon Blvd, I loved to buy and eat chicaron bulaklak contained in a piece of discarded newspaper which the seller expertly form into a cone — snatched from a pile of newspaper cuttings beside a pile of bills and coins — into which she expertly poured my much awaited chicaron. Germs and other negative health effects farthest from my mind then.

  34. NHerrera says:


    Fighting words from Trillanes to Duterte:

    Trillanes mocks Duterte on the President’s latest accusation: ‘Ayan ka na naman’


    Sidenote: in my opinion, the good senator cannot afford to soften his words — probably now more than before.

  35. NHerrera says:


    Fareed Zakaria in a Washington Post article,


    echoing the thoughts of some analysts, elaborates on the plausible near-future reality of a world of essentially two digital ecosystems powered by US and China, respectively.

    Zakaria, among others, cites the advantage of an economic power with 1.4 billion population [with many capable scientists, engineers, technicians] spurred on by what is called a “sputnik moment” for China to work hard, Thereby coming up with products that it can produce more cheaply with quality comparable to that of the US products. And with its Belt and Road Initiative in the developing countries, it is not far-fetched for these countries and some of the developed ones to side with the Chinese tech-digital ecosystem.

    There are other variables and points of view of course and the “winner” here is not necessarily China, but the point I can agree with is that the near future reality of these two ecosystems is very plausible.

    Exciting times ahead.

    • Most interesting perspective. Keyed an idea for a blog. Thanks.

    • edgar lores says:

      The 5G battle seems to be between Ericsson vs. Huawei.

      There have been several and current technological battles:

      o Betamax vs. VHS
      o Windows vs. Apple
      o CD (digital) vs. vinyl (analog)

      The deciding factors seem to be:

      o Technological superiority
      o Price
      o Ubiquity (mass adoption)

      It’s interesting that the superior products (Betamax, Apple) lost/lose on price and ubiquity. With vinyl, its superior sound (warmth) is giving analog a triumphant comeback… despite its pops and crackles.

      It may be that the 5G ecosystems will co-exist (in different geographical continents) for some time with no clear winner.

      • karlgarcia says:

        Erricson was alluded to as the more expensive but inferior alternative by the Hwawei spokesperson in asking for the US to reconsider.

      • karlgarcia says:

        Amazing how vinyl ressurected. The sales figures is understated because the figures do not include the”pre-loved”(hat tip to Grace Lim Reyes) sales .

      • sonny says:


        Edgar, couldn’t resist:

        Digital = Ilocano technology

        Analog = Non-Ilocano technology

        • edgar lores says:

          apay ngay kasjay?

          • sonny says:

            Old joke among Ilocanos/Filipinos in Chicago: Idi ngamin centennial (1998) among other things, we discussed about the relative “linguistic character” of our regional languages. Of course the recognizable word for Ilocanos is “didiay.” Very quickly jumped to “didiay-tal” 🙂
            In the same vein we concluded (superficially) that Tagalog expresses emotions well, Visayan (Ilonggo) is musical, and Ilocano lends itself well to express abstraction and onomatopeia. The latter opinion was pointed to by my Ateneo Jesuit mentor from the Ilocos.

        • popoy says:

          This is biblical puzzle from an AFP PA Col of yonder years than most here:

          Of the first man and woman of creation
          Eve was an Ilocana
          Adam was a Bulakeno.

          That’s why universal issues are so Pinoy.

      • NHerrera says:

        The “tilt” in varying degrees to one or the other system after the fruits of Chinese sputnik moment efforts are realized — resulting in support or supply chains weaned significantly from the US-associated companies:

        US-Canada-West Europe-Australia: US-led system?

        China-South America-Africa-East Europe-South Asia- South East Asia: Chinese System?

        • edgar lores says:

          Most likely.

          Oceania — the small countries like Fiji, Vanuatu, Kiribati — will probably follow the Chinese system.

          Indonesia is a mystery to me.

          • karlgarcia says:

            Regarding Indonesia.
            As far as e-commerce is concerned, Chinese companies like Alibaba have stated pouring in money.

      • sonny says:

        Quick, easy read historical bacgrounder to the Chinese diaspora:


        • NHerrera says:

          In relation to the link —

          Notwithstanding our rightful criticisms of the present day China, especially of its leaders, this much is remarkable: we have to grant the traditional industry, capability and other good traits of the Chinese. And if we add to that a past great history in conjunction with the present day Trumpian America — all these adding to the adrenalin rush of the Chinese — we may say: indeed, the cliché of the current one being a Chinese Century is not misplaced.

          [Disclosure: I am afraid the slip (of my far removed ancestry) is showing here.]

          • sonny says:

            NH, one of the oldest stereotypes that has stayed with me is about “the inscrutable Chinese.” In all my classes in Catholic school there was always the unmistakeable presence of Chinese classmates. More, Many of them seem to manage to end up in the top 10 percent of our classes. Now that I am old, I learn about the Uyghurs of Yunnan province and the fecund Han Chinese and most especially the Fujian Chinese who arrived on Philippine shores from as far back as the literature I read. So yes, the monolithic stereotype of the Chinese is slowly and surely being unveiled. Thus some time in the future when genetic mapping will be done with more ease, the Chinese factor in our national makeup will be clearer. For the good, I hope and pray.

            • popoy says:

              Even in forbidden religion, even in manner of protesting, the Chinese is like a diamond. Go read about the Fallon Gong.

              IN the mid-fifties (1955) reading created indelible impressions to a young mind; to be impressed by a lady American author and an entire people I read Pearl Bucks’ the Good Earth. Read the Long March and be impressed by a cabal of leaders in late sixties and in their late seventies to put on track a future most populous continent.

              • sonny says:

                True, Popoy.

                The lenses with which we choose to understand is biased at the onset. For me the safe position is to stick to the historical data (event, time, place) and then refract these with one’s sense of reality and fair play.

              • popoy says:

                If one can see the light of day, one should also discern and fight the darkness of cruel nights.

              • sonny says:

                Might be related. FYI on the Communist Party aversion to Religion as the stronger competitor to the Chinese heart and soul.


                “… https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/terrible-mistake-us-govt-religious-freedom-watchdog-slams-vaticans-deal-with-china

                “… China’s war on religion began twenty years ago with the targeting of Falun Gong Buddhists. Of late, it has spread to encompass all religions, including China’s own home-grown folk religion of Taoism. …

                “… The state seems to see Catholics and other Christians as a particular threat, perhaps because their numbers have been growing so fast. China’s Christians may now outnumber the 94-million-member Chinese Communist Party, so it is no surprise that party leader Xi Jinping sees them as a threat to his continued rule.

                In all, up to 3 million people in China may currently be in detention camps solely because of their faith, mostly Christians, Buddhists, and Uighur Muslims.”

                “… Of course, the person most responsible for the current wave of persecution is Communist Party general secretary Xi Jinping himself, whose determination to stamp out all religious sentiment in China rivals the late Chairman Mao’s purges of the fifties and sixties.

                In fact, Xi Jinping and other Chinese communist leaders have consciously rejected all of the building blocks of Western civilization: democracy, the rule of law, civil society, a free press, human rights, and the free market. All of these are, in the words of Central Committee Directive No. 9 of 2013, “threats to the continued rule of the Party.”

                Most critically, they have rejected the transcendent capstone of Christianity, which binds the whole of Western civilization together. They understand that China’s conversion to Christianity would mark the end of their brutal system of rule.

                This is why the persecution of the Church in China will only intensify.”

    • caliphman says:

      Huawei’s Yearslong Rise Is Littered With Accusations of Theft and Dubious Ethics https://www.wsj.com/articles/huaweis-yearslong-rise-is-littered-with-accusations-of-theft-and-dubious-ethics-11558756858

      Huawei’s emergence as a leading supplier of telecom is based on Chinese manufacturing low cost and excellence and state support and subsidy. Its basic RnD is primarily drawn from
      outright outright theft and copying technology from its more advanced competitors. Moral and legal issues aside, the ultimate success in the smartphone, 5G, and other key digital/tech ecosystems is not hardware but the software piece of competing products and services. For example, Hua wei and Xio Mi smartphones might be technically superior and more widely selling ( China sales included) than Galaxy, Iphone and other brands but almost all are powered by Apple OS and Android software. Developing the core system software that is plug compatible with the the established base of standard software apps is not a cakewalk and running stolen unlicensed copies on Chinese telecom products orob.c. ably is not marketable outside Chiba.

  36. popoy says:

    be careful, BE CAREFUL admonished by a friend, so also to all friends who don’t know it yet who might find time to read this link.


    • popoy says:

      Many have heard of the Tagalog pigeon from heaven (bato-bato sa langit, tamaan wag magagalit) whch is hataw sa kalabaw pero sa kalabaw ang latay.

  37. karlgarcia says:

    Back to Bikoy.
    An analysis by Solita Monsod worth reading and agreeing with.


  38. Maria belinda sevalla says:

    Very well said Sen Trillanes!!!
    We were sad with the election results but we accept the reality that money played a major role!!!
    Besides, the admin propagandists are very good in spinning tales.
    But we have no regrets at all!!!
    We did our best, we campaigned and talked after every mass to inform as many people as possible on the importance of an Independent senate!!!
    In my own assessment, we should’ve done these much earlier to have covered more audience.

  39. popoy says:


    There is no need for
    a FOR SALE sign:

    The price is not only for money
    But for something most precious
    Not for one-time sale
    but for generations to pay
    When an object or person
    Or something, even a soul
    Is for sale even to the devil.

    Is there a place where
    Culture is easy sale like
    Righteous and vibrant
    A culture of impunity?
    A culture of corruption?
    A culture of dishonest elections?
    A culture of felons’s shamelessness?
    A culture of lawlessness?
    A culture of three zones?
    A culture of political mendicancy?

    The answer is NAH, Never.
    Certainly, there is none
    Because the answers to such
    Eche bucheche questions had
    Already been pawned cheap long ago
    In local pawnshops by snake medicine men
    of mercenary politics.

  40. He has charismatic personality of Hitler, Eddie Amin, Ortega, Noriega, and the Leader of Iraq ?. He has the ideology of the late dictator Marcos as to “Making the people poor as to easily be manipulated”. Their only difference is, Marcos used his brilliancy in a fine characters that most Filipinos admired and be proud of, unknowingly, that they were driven to his strong-willed ambitions. His Monarchy form of Govt. Whilst, Duterte has possess somewhat harsh personality. Both of them has shared commonalities in leaderships. There were Pros & Cons and more to their advantages(personal) than to the masses of their countrymen and the Country itself. Undeniably true, Marcos did so much projects in the Country but profits from kickbacks for enrichment. In his regime were so many abuses reported, too. Mostly by his allies and his daughter Imee herself abusive of her power given. Somehow, it appeared that Filipinos has a short memories to mentioned of some. My wish to all Filipinos, deliverance from all evils.

  41. popoy says:

    Knock on wood! what is the significance of this if made a practice or policy? Those with morbid minds a friend told me should not think of the unexpected.


    • sonny says:

      Where should one look to for transparency?

    • Evidently the entire entourage is some 200 people. I suspect it is entirely pleasure with a meeting for show. The Japanese are superb hosts who will be sure to take good care of the herd of best friends and acolytes of the President. I’ve had numerous corporate perks of this kind, so it is not for me to complain.

      • popoy says:

        My friend is insisting to have look at the visit of the President of Poland to Russia.

      • kasambahay says:

        sometimes I think his entourage en masse, 200 this time, act as his human shield, they’d be got at first, before he could be got at, lol! noticed also how he suddenly bulked around the torso? 1st started at recent pma graduation ceremony in baguio where he was 2hrs late, had difficulty walking maybe because like a girdle, the thing around his torso was tight and uncomfortable. my adjutant boss clamped up, and that made me think that the contraption around the torso is bullet proof vest worn under the shirt. uy, he feared being ousted.

        for delicacy’s sake, a bigger size jacket ought to be worn, make the vest look less cumbersome. else people starts to think he has boomers strapped on him, boom!

        sorry, bad joke. I dont know how to make rape joke, kasi.

      • popoy says:

        Am waiting still, for anyone here in TSoH to discern the riddle, the spin on the wall.
        There used to be what they say: The Family that Prays together… Stays Together [ ON EARTH, IN HEAVEN OR HELL] (capitalized words I added). Pastor Jim Jones and his fanatic followers WENT TOGETHER. Adolph and closed-in brains WENT TOGETHER in the bunker and later in Nuremberg; so was SADDAM and his ministers; even SEPARATELY they still WENT TOGETHER.

        • popoy says:

          I remain in old age awed beyond compare of the richness and trueness of Tagalog adage (kasabihan). Example

          Matalino man daw ang matsin matinik malalim.
          Maraming natitinik sa mga bubong matsin.

          Pagkahaba-haba man daw ng prusisyon, maraming kandila.

          Ang taong hindi lumingon sa pinangalingan meron beekee. .

          Pag may isinuksok meron sa ulo babagsak.

          Duling ang dalawang pagibig; bulag kakapa-kapa pag more than three.

          Ang namamangka sabay sa dalawang ilog ay nakasabay sa ninakaw speedboat.

          Ang bawat salawikain sa Tagalog puedeng gawan ng fake news.

          Ang lahat ng utang kahit ninakaw may bayad.

          Lintik lang ang bayad na walang ganti.

          Each and every line above in a Tagalog proverb
          could make a stanza or haiku poetry.

  42. distant observer says:

    Mabuhay Sir Trillanes!
    You are supported and admired by many.

  43. Sup says:

    Committee suggestions:
    Bong Revilla: Finance
    Bato: Justice and Human Rights
    Imee: Education
    Go: Public Information and Mass Media (Selfie)

  44. NHerrera says:


    I find the following study of Australia’s Lowy Institute — a think tank which provides research and perspectives on the international trends shaping Australia and the world — interesting:


    It concerns its ranking of 25 countries in Asia in terms of its “power” based on 8 measures and associated sub-measures. Note that it is an Asia [Countries] Power Index not a worldwide power index — the focus being relative power in Asia. The results are shown in the following table:

    The 8 measures used by Lowy are the following [the sub-measures of each are in the link]:

    1. ECONOMIC RESOURCES: Core economic strength and the attributes of an economy with the most geopolitical relevance.

    2. MILITARY CAPABILITY: Conventional military strength.

    3. RESILIENCE: The capacity to deter real or potential external threats to state stability.

    4. FUTURE RESOURCES: The projected distribution of future resources and capabilities which play into perceptions of power today.

    5. DIPLOMATIC INFLUENCE: The extent and standing of a state’s or territory’s foreign relations.

    6. ECONOMIC RELATIONSHIPS: The capacity to exercise influence and leverage through economic interdependencies.

    7. DEFENCE NETWORKS: Defence parternships that act as force multipliers or autonomous military capability.

    8. CULTURAL INFLUENCE: The ability to shape international public opinion through cultural appeal and interaction.

    Aside from the study itself which is interesting [it may be worthwhile to peruse the link if one has the time], I believe there may be a “power index analog” that may be used to view the current set of 24 senators akin to that made in the Lowy study for the 25 countries in the region — some measures used by Lowy themselves may even be directly usable.

    Some fellows in TSH may pick up an idea from this, I am not that politically adept.

    • NHerrera says:


      The sub-measures used by Lowy for the 8 measures are:

      1. Economic resources sub-measures:

      international leverage

      2. Military capability sub-measures:

      defence spending
      armed forces
      weapons and platforms
      signature capabilities
      asian military posture

      3. Resilience sub-measures:

      institutional stability
      resource security
      geoeconomic security
      geopolitical security
      nuclear deterrence

      4. Future resource sub-measures:

      economic resources 2030
      defence resources 2030
      broad resources 2030
      demographic resources 2045

      5. Diplomatic resources sub-measures:

      diplomatic networks
      multilateral power
      foreign policy

      6. Economic relationships sub-measures:

      regional trade relations
      regional investment ties
      economic diplomacy

      7. Defence networks sub-measures:

      regional alliance networks
      regional non-allied partners
      global arms transfer

      8. Cultural influence sub-measures:

      cultural projections
      information flows
      people exchanges

    • Wonderful assessment. Thanks for bringing it in. The Philippines is 17th, a very weak standing, and slid one notch from the prior ranking, falling behind North Korea. The western-aligned nations are not building power. China, Russia, and North Korea are.

    • karlgarcia says:

      On number 3.
      Our definition of resilience is akin to survival I think, instead of threat deterrence.

  45. Micha says:

    In the Philippines as in most western countries, the neoliberal experiment is a spectacular failure to bring about economic justice which resulted in, among other things, the coming into power of unconventional leaders and charlatans like Trump and Rodrigo Duterte.


    Understanding that dynamics in our economic system is key to how we might effectively deal with right wing authoritarian fascist regimes here and abroad. In his article above, Joseph Stiglitz is offering a most viable alternative.

    Talking about the clownish incompetence of our public officials is futile. It is not going to alter the political landscape.

    We need a system change on the economic front.

  46. Angel Esteban says:

    Well said.

    Surely he will die before or after his term. I still believe in Divine intervention.

    Corruption and abuse of power is not new ..just remember MARCOS..ERAP and GMA era. Not sure about Ramos but surely he belongs to the club.. just ask what happened to the sale of the military base in Taguig.

    It’s amazing how people like Duterte could be so greedy of power and money at the expense of millions of Filipinos who live in atrocious poverty.

    It is the treachery … in allowing the Red China ..swallowed our rights and ownership that incomprehensible. How could our state leader sell the nation to an evil country.

    Being corrupt is forgivable but being traitor is mortal sin akin to Satan’s persona.

  47. Lily says:

    When is the time of reckoning? Long time coming. In the midst of this chaotic administration SWS surveys are laughable.

  48. Bonifacio Galicia says:

    ….we must by all means stop Duterte’s and minions lies and evil doings by exposing them backed by by evidences that can be vetted….

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