Bully Boys in the West Pacific

The kind of leader Filipinos adore? Ivan the Terrible

By JoeAm

Democracy is an idealized form of government that has proved hard to manage because most ‘leaders’ are inept or crooked. Dictatorships or other forms of authoritarian rule are better understood by people who are not educated or who are lazy, crooked, or brutal themselves. They can’t conceptualize freedom and link it to inspiration. They are inspired by a leader who squashes others like bugs and lies to them in ways that makes them feel like big shots.

Thus we see the character of China and the Duterte government, and the reasons for their successes.

Democracy requires four things that a whole lot of people don’t have:

  1. National principles, to establish right from wrong.
  2. Knowledge, to be able select capable and honest leaders.
  3. Sacrifice, to be able to set one’s own ways aside for the betterment of the nation.
  4. Compassion, to help the disadvantaged become equal, under law.

In China and in the Duterte government, national principles are founded on entitlement, not fairness. Knowledge is controlled. Dedication is to the entitled, not the nation. And the disadvantaged are there to be used, not cherished.

If people can’t grasp the wholesomeness of freedom and self-determination, democracy is sure to fail, as it has in the Philippines. Citizens possess no passion to be free. They undertake no street protests demanding to be equal. They are happy being told what to do.

Business leaders and educators dare not speak out lest they become outcasts among the self-dealers. As long as they are obedient, their future is unruffled. There is security in hiding out.

Thus we can see the social framework in which the powerful thrive. Apathy. Vengeful self-justification among the disadvantaged that attaches to siding with leaders who squash others. Absence of the determined kind courage that drives freedom-lovers to risk their lives for a cause.

The Philippines is dead of soul, in the main, it’s hopes attaching to a few educated people who see the destruction that is occurring but can do little about it. It is the perfect social storm. A base of anger and ignorance propping up a large set of criminally minded leaders and citizens.

One could accept the demise of this wretched state if it were not China promoting it, smirking and ready to pick up the pieces to add to its power pack.

China is just more of the same. More authoritarianism. More ruthlessness. More impunity. More lies and nonsense.

The Philippines is reaching a state of despair for caring and knowledgeable citizens who don’t want to become stick-men doing as they are told by cruel, greedy, and uncivil leaders.

Who understand the joy of living in a world of equality, responsibility to others, and freedoms that offers success to those who works hard, intelligently, and earnestly.

Not just those who are favored because they bow like brainless zombies to the entitled.


47 Responses to “Bully Boys in the West Pacific”
  1. ed asegurado says:

    Yeah…brainless zombies!

    On Mon, Jul 1, 2019, 10:13 AM The Society of Honor: the Philippines wrote:

    > The Society of Honor posted: ” By JoeAm Democracy is an idealized form of > government that has proved hard to manage because most ‘leaders’ are inept > or crooked. Dictatorships or other forms of authoritarian rule are better > understood by people who are not educated or who are lazy, c” >

  2. Andres 2018 says:


    1. We prefer democracy because of the individual rights and freedom that it offers.
    2. Our Constitution was founded base on the concept of democracy.
    3. Our Constitution is not at all perfect, it has flaws.
    4. A constitutional democracy considers the interest of minority on deciding issues.
    5. The consideration of the interest of minority on our Constitution is not effectively present at all or vague at best, particularly on the Executive branch.
    6. The vagueness can be certainly seen on the election of our President.
    7. Last election, President Duterte won the presidency. This leave nothing to Roxas, Poe, Binay and Santiago, the voices of the people with these person were wasted. That was 50 million voices or 70% of the voting citizens.
    8. With these, we pray for constitutional reform because parts of our Constitution are flawed.
    9. Pardon for grammar and spelling errors.


    • Nicely said, Andres. I don’t notice grammar, actually, and spelling errors are always aptly blamed on keyboards with a mind of their own. 🙂 Regards to you.

    • chemrock says:

      Andres — Duterte was constitutionally elected, no one is denying that, and you certainly went out of your way in your comments in your past blogs to stamp that fact. But now you seem to go counterfactual with “.The vagueness (of the constitution) can be certainly seen on the election of our President”. Would you care to explain why is wrong with the constitution that led to the election of Duterte? So the blame lies in the constitution, not the electorate?

      The “F…” up thing that led to the election of Duterte is this — he went in as a substitution for Martin Dino. Why is that allowed when Dino filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) for the position of mayor of Pasay City is a legal befuddlement that Comelec of 2016 cannot explain. Why the whole affair was taken so lightly, I am still scratching my head. My feeling is initially the LP absolutely underestimated him at the federal level and so no threat. They knew his strength locally, but thought at the federal level, people will take him for the clown that he is.. .

      • “..he was consistently underestimated by the German elite. Before he became Chancellor, many of his opponents had dismissed himas a joke for h is crude speeches and tacky ralllies. He was a ‘pathetic dunderhead’ according to one magainzine editor: another wrote that his party was a ‘society of incompetents’ and that people should not ‘overestimate the fairground party’.

        Even after the elections had made the Nazis the largest party in the Reichstag, people still kept thinking Hitler was an easy mark, a blustering idiot who could easily be controlled by smart people..”

        From “Humans, A Brief History of how we Fucked it all up” by Tom Phillips. (think also of Hitlers strong village Austrian accent, not even the elegant Viennese accent, which might have made people think he was a stupid peasant they could lead around)

        • popoy says:

          If my read and recall are correct, he was a corporal in the army and a painter whose mediocre works won’t even sell in the sidewalk; his lack of greatness and plentiful malevolence has caused giga numbers of lives in his own as well as other countries. Successful nobodies end up huge liabilities to the human race.

      • Andres 2018 says:


        1. I will not discuss if Duterte was a good or a bad president.
        2. The electorates could not be blame as they are only exercising their rigths as given by democracy.
        3. The Constitution’s plurality voting for the position of the president, the number one position, is the culprit.
        4. Plurality voting is a slap to the rule of majority and a bully to the interest of the minority.
        5. If the Constitution should be amended, plurality voting is the first on my list to be casted out.

        • karlgarcia says:

          Thumbs up for number five. I long for a preferential instant runoff.


          • popoy says:

            Thanks Karl for the run-off learning read for me. In soil and water engng run-off could be the initial stage of soil erosion. The run-off election process could be Britain’s political legacy to its commonwealth countries. The process is difficult to corrupt as buy and sell business activity.

        • chemrock says:

          2. No one is denying the right of the electorate to vote in thieves, scumbags, sycophants, nincompoots, murderers. If they do so, that is the weakness of democracy. So why do we still clamour for democracy? Because there is no better alternative to freedom of choice.

          3+4. Plurality is not the problem, leadership is the problem. You blame the system, I blame the people. I can think of no nation in the world that is so homogeneous that no minority exists. A nation can only be harmonious where minorities accept that some things must be done what the majority prefers, and majorities must accommodate some things that are existential to the minorities. It is the job of the leadership to play this balancing role.

          5. The best of people can exist fine under any system.

          • Andres 2018. says:


            3+4.1. Speaking of nations and on how they conduct the elections of their president, try to have a statistic of how many democratic nations uses plurality to elect the highest position of the land, and you will end up a handful. And those handful nations have even countermeasures not to fall for a plain, simple, and single-round plurality election. Going to a smaller scale, like on the case of a Corporation here in the Philippines, to elect the officers you need the vote of majority of the members of the board of directors, not plurality.

            3+4.2. Plurality have merits of its own though. Its simple, easy to implement, easy to count. Plurality can be use on other positions, but not on the top positions.

            3+4.3. In an organization, basically, we have the people and the system. People are inherent, system are replaceable. Going on a greater scale, the people (the candidates and the voters) of the nation are inherent, we cannot simply replace them, we can have dumb voters, intelligent voters, and thats it, but the system (the election system) can be change! And its up to us on how to determine which election system will give a better representative of democracy.

            3+4.4. “leadership is the problem” – this is a case of “the end justifies the means.” A plurality election may give a good leader, or a bad one, but that needs to be proven after the same leader puts on the work. A majority election will give the same, or any system of course. The leadership is a problem of the people itself, its inherent, see discussions in 3+4.3, and we cannot do anything to improve it, unless we touch the system, and look for system that better represents democracy.

            • popoy says:

              IF I may add, on 3+4.1 to 3+4.2, plurality is exact only in arithmetic but in elections plurality can be an elastic commodity for sale; plurality sells cheap for bad money; plurality is seasonal buy and sell activity profitable to both buyer and seller of authority in the polity. Plurality is an investment where OCC (opportunity cost of capital) does not apply. Plurality could be a key to the vault that contains taxpayers’ money.

  3. I can only repeat my Twitter comment, which answered to a Randy David comment:


    how can a people who mostly subscribe to an all or nothing concept of power make democracy work? Especially one which has no leeway for the kind of compromise – between separate groups, for example – that is essential for a republic, not just a supermajority dictatorship?

  4. Ron says:

    Well written piece. Couls be applied to many other democracies, including the U.S..

    • Yes, it could. Or Great Britain.

      • popoy says:

        I beg to disagree TSoH and Ron on “absence of collective will.” There’s Brexit in GB, BLM and MAGA in USA, may be IRA in Ireland, and the whistle bomb called EDSA in the Philippines; that is, if collective will is quantitatively larger than a critical mass. Collective will is the vertebrae of democracy; the opposing ideology has it in the reverse in the collective will to be free..

  5. Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

    It’s a treadmill stress test. Juan de la Cruz’s knees are wobbly, ready to give up at Level 6, with one more level to go. He’s reaching into his stores of glycogen, his breath an entanglement of short inhalations, but his head isn’t throbbing and he can still think clearly. “I’ve done this before, 400 hours of this with the Spanish conquistador, 50 in Hollywood, three with Samurai, 20 with fake hero, two with Blue Label, and now three and more to go with the King of Nothing. I can do this until I pass out. My medical history is sound: heart with enough love, possessed of the Holy Spirit, how can I lose,” he says. On and on. Then RectoBank22. “I… feel… faint,” he said. Is he dying?

    • The present situation is different because the potential conqueror is near, has ten times the population of the Philippines – and has shown utter ruthlessness in assimilating other peoples conquered such as Tibetans and Uigurs. Spaniards and English decimated the natives just across the Atlantic when they started colonizing, America out-populated the original Hawaiians when it ventured out into the Pacific. Not even the three-year horror of the Japanese occupation could come close to what the Chinese might do to the country.

      • popoy says:

        Literally, it is not correct but
        Figuratively it may be wise to think
        A man or a people could be likened to being dogs
        Dictador, tuta, ibagsak so yell the radical dog masses
        Mankind goes to heaven or hell but dogs do not
        When dogs die they go to Limbo
        for they allegedly have no soul.

        When a country is said
        to have gone to the dogs
        that’s nothing so far or could
        be near to being fake news.

        Dogs have more than hundreds of breeds
        But humans can’t turn them to slaves
        Poodles and chihuahuas are more obedient
        Clean, affectionate and have short lives.

        Dobermans are loyal and will die for their masters
        Rottweilers and Pit bulls will kill for nothing
        And German shepherds will scare the wits of wolves
        Ascals will always roam the streets of Metro Manila
        Will always be delicacies in Baguio or Pampanga.

        Heard and read a lot about “of dogs and men”
        In democracies; not so in many People’s Republics
        Because there is no need to enslave dogs since
        Rats are afraid of cats but not of dogs.

    • popoy says:

      Insan, mi primo tama ba ito?

      I read a lot about Albert Einstein
      But understood so little of his simple mind
      Which I see so often made so obvious
      So alive in the written thoughts
      Dug deep in the bowels of his perception
      Out of his blue neurons came E=mc2

      I explain to urbane men
      There was no treadmill then
      But now it’s found almost everywhere.
      Easy for me to know my E=mc2
      My energy-mass equivalence.

      At my age 82 as I tread the mill
      I need only to change my speed
      From 3 mph to 5 mph in 5 minutes
      And nobody but me feels the peril
      Of what happens to my energy
      And the mass of my physical body.

    • Could be, it seems to me. Duterte threatens to arrest people who choose to impeach him, and the PNP is willing to do the arrests if they judge a crime has been committed. What? Cyberlibel or some senseless crime, or going back in history like with Trillanes? No warrant?

      I am fascinated by the numbers. Maybe a dozen hard line pro-china people, and 110 million following along, or being dragged along. Astounding.

      • kasambahay says:

        the impossible dream, to dream of impeaching duterte. when are these dreamers going to realize firstly to dent the thick shieldwall surrounding duterte? he cannot be impeached, his shieldwall must first be penetrated else dented for a start.

        and if senators can be impeached, best to impeach bong go muna. he’s duterte’s horcrux.

        I say, a weakened the shieldwall makes for a duterte vulnerable to impeachment.

        making a shortcut of going straight to impeach duterte has not work and not likely to work.

        there are preliminaries, foreplay muna, lol!

  6. Dippindotz says:

    May I comment on your twitter message:

    “What astounds me is how many well-educated adults in fine clothes do not seem to notice that the Philippines is being dismembered like a Chooks chicken on the chopping block. WPS, Constitution, jobs, due process, press freedom, civility, unity. Dignity. Gone.” -JoeAm @societyofhonor Twitter

    Astute observation by the way, Joeam. Anyway, I came across a YT video yesterday by Bishop Baron, and he explains how the devil operates (you can skip to) @3:40:

    Eerily, as if he is describing what is happening today, and to what you have twitted.

    • Thank you for the resource, DD. I agree that the Devil has staked out a leadership role in the Philippines.

      • popoy says:

        Why do I write many thoughts before they could happen?
        Si Neneng ating Inang Bayan
        Malamlam na mata’y ibig lumuha
        Sa harap ng salamin, sinisinag
        Matimyas na labing malapit nang ngomiwi
        Nagsisikip na dibdib lumolobo sa pighati.

        Matagal ng di makakilos, di makagalaw
        Dating marilag, mahal nating si Neneng.
        Sa kaliwa ni Neneng kitang-kita sa salamin
        Balot ng liwanag lumuluhang guardian angel

        Guardian angel, guardian devil sila lang
        Ang magkaribal sa palad ni Neneng.
        Si Neneng natin na ubod ng ganda
        Kutis niya’y makinis, malambot na marmol.
        Kinagisnan, nilakihang ugali
        Hinhin at bait, mahiyain at masunurin.

        Hindi naging sagabal sa grano at tigidig
        Tumubo at puminsala, pumintog
        Nagnana sa mukhang mala-birhen.
        Di pangit yan, masasanay ka rin diyan
        Maganda ka at maalam, Cool ka lang
        Uling sa mukha na me- make up- pan
        Mahal man sumingil nagkalat ang derma diyan.
        Luha’y bilis dumaloy sa pisngi ng anghel.
        Para siyang nilumpo ng free will
        Diyos ang nagbigay magbuhat kay Adan
        Para lahat ng tao mamulat sa kalinga
        Maging malaya palayain ng katotohanan.

        Walang masabi anghel pinipi ng free will
        Kahit gustong niyang isigaw: Come On!
        Yang tigidig at grano di maalis yan
        Una’y dapat tanggapin, meron ka niyan,
        Huwag magtulog-tulogan, humarap sa katotohanan.

        Tiris at antibiotics alam mong epek sandali lang
        Extreme make over lang epektibong lunas diyan.
        Kinalimutan ang sa kanya’y nasa kanan
        Sa galit ni Neneng salami’y binanatan.

        Dagling hinanap placards na nakatago’
        nag jeans apurahan hindi na takot sa dugo,
        kamao’y sarado, sa barikada’y tumakbo
        talagang decidido ipa oopera’t ipabubunkal
        Ang kumakalat niyang tigidig at grano.

        Si Neneng mutya at diyosa ni Jose Rizal
        Dating natatanging Perlas ng Silangan
        KAPIT BISIG tayo, huwag matakot
        (Written September 2013 or may be much earlier)

        Neneng (Pinas) will be happy I am sure if mi primo Wilfredo will translate the piece to English.

  7. NHerrera says:

    Off Topic


    From 23 Democratic Candidates for the 2020 US Presidency, four — or 17 percent of the 23 — gets a total nod of 68 percent percent from the national polls after two nationwide debates: Biden 22, Harris 17, Warren 15, Sanders 14. Not exactly the numbers often quoted in the 20/80 Pareto Principle — 20 percent of the efforts yields 80 percent of the total outcome or some such application of this management principle — but conceptually close.

    My money is on Kamala Harris.

    This one is On Topic. Inhale deeply, exhale slowly; do this 10 times. If Ivan or the Bully is still frightful, then repeat the entire process. If he is still frightful after the repeat, then I can’t help you, buddy. 🙂

    • NHerrera says:

      In my dreams: if the 80 percent part of Pareto Principle comes about with four still viable; old men Biden and Sanders still stuck at their numbers; the 12 = 80 – 68 get evenly distributed to the two ladies [not sexist here by a mile], then Harris and Warren gets 23 and 21, respectively. And the momentum will carry Harris and Warren to a Convention win. [As I said, my money is still on Harris.]

      And I’d love to see Kamala take on Trump, post Demo Convention.

      • Micha says:

        “And I’d love to see Kamala take on Trump”

        Oh my, Kamala is a phony, a Clinton democrat, a lying, overly ambitious politician who’ll be taken apart by Don Donald in general election.

        I sincerely hope Democrats don’t commit political suicide by nominating her.

        • What is your take on Sen. Warren, Micha? I tend to agree with your view on Harris being a puff ball, and weak as a candidate, but don’t know about the lying. I think Biden is past his time, the youngsters are before their time, and Warren has the best shot at running tough. Sanders has never thrilled me, although I know you like him.

          • Micha says:

            I won’t lose sleep if Senator Warren is the nominee. A Sanders-Warren ticket would be awesome.

              • I’m starting to really like https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kirsten_Gillibrand , Joe.

                her and Tulsi Gabbard,

                (i know , i know, this pic looks like Amy Klobuchar just farted and everyones just being polite)

                Harris I have no issues but she’s cultivated a no none sense, experienced prosecutor brand and she fell hook line and sinker on that Smollett fiasco in Chicago; Warren is no match for Trump come campaign time her I’m a real Indian fiasco is still widely remembered. Pocahontas will echo to eternity for her.

                Gillibrand will go toe-to-toe with Trump re China and China trade war; Gabbard as VP nom can remind Trump that he never served. Those two will make a good one, two.

                Kirsten Gillibrand, Joe.

              • Thanks. Will watch her. I wasn’t impressed with Klobuchar in the interview I saw. Too structured and rehearsed to be trustworthy, somehow.

              • Last nite was the first I’ve ever heard of Marianne Williamson , Joe. Just realized that Oprah is actually running in 2020, and her horse is Williamson. Trump & Oprah are best buds, so this will be interesting.

                she’s actually Oprah’s spiritual advisor of sorts— which means I guess she’ll be losing the Bible Belt, but she just could win over the Rust Belt.

    • NHerrera says:

      I read Joe’s latest tweet, re-tweeted here, about the Senators concocting a lot of nonsensical evils or jokes. I have done some numerical nonsense and jokes in my above posts myself. Sorry. My defense: at least I am not being highly paid, with associated staff and office expenses, from tax-payers money.

    • popoy says:

      Here where I am, when I ride taxis and the driver is from India, I ask him: what is the name of the girl who is lotus flower goddess? After a moment of thinking, he says, Kam’la Devi. Do you know, she could be the next President of USA? Oh we know, Yes, Yes. big chance she could be. This is not fake yarn. Namaste.

  8. NHerrera says:

    If anything is bad, Aquino and Roxas did it. If anything is good, Duterte did it.

    If anything is bad, Obama and Clinton did it. If anything is good, Trump did it.

    Who is copying whose playbook?

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