Can dynasties build a better Philippines?

Analysis and Opinion

By JoeAm

I enjoyed the discussion in the prior blog. Contributor LCX was back to promoting the tandem of VP Robredo and Mayor Duterte-Carpio as a way to ace Marcos, Jr. out of the presidency. Senator Pangilinan would have to slide to a Cabinet position or other assignment.

LCX does not buy the premise that Sara is Rody. There is evidence to support his view that she is her own master. She does not bow to her father or anyone else. There is also evidence to support being wary of her.

Well, speculation is fact to many these days, and I won’t take up anyone’s cudgel on it.

It does cause me to wonder, though, are dynasties necessarily bad social constructs? I’ve long gone against the grain of popular thinking on oligarchs, believing they are good for the Philippines as Japan’s business collectives were good for her development. They fostered the accumulation of great wealth to get things done. The Philippines has notable cities, malls, eateries, and jet planes because of the oligarchs. Without them, we’d be flying on Chinese airlines and shopping in wet markets.

Dynasties are local oligarchs but their arena is more political than business-minded. Voters are their shareholders and most voters just go with what the proxy agents recommend, which keeps the dynasties in power, generation after generation. The dynasties can do good or bad, getting rich either way. The riches are a substitute for lousy government pay scales which are reflective of the nation’s poverty, not its promise.

I’m inclined to believe that trying to pass an anti-dynasty law is a waste of time. How about just electing a President who can bring dynasties out of the cold light of scorn and into the powerful light of progress. Who can challenge, direct, and fund the emergence of a nation of city-states, each an engine of local development, job production, and wealth.

Use the geography, don’t fight it. Use the power infrastructure that already exists. Don’t muddle around with some outdated concept of democratic purity.

Accept what the Philippines is. Direct it. Leverage it. Build on it.

Stop wasting time.


Photo from 2013 UP examination of Philippine dynasties.

370 Responses to “Can dynasties build a better Philippines?”
  1. Micha says:

    This is a classic case of Stockholm Syndrome.

    • JoeAm says:

      “Stockholm syndrome is an emotional response. It happens to some abuse and hostage victims when they have positive feelings toward an abuser or captor”

      No, it is an intellectual proposal aimed at getting past the morass of ideological arguments and the endless legislation that binds the nation in legalistic rope, and going nowhere. Power exists. Direct it.

      • Micha says:

        There’s a reason Japan and China got rid of their dynasties. You cannot modernize or make progress with them.

        Philippine progress and the people who hoped for it have been held hostage for decades by these powerful families. The idea of legitimizing them and giving them even more power is not an intellectual proposal, it’s a decadence and a HELPLESS SURRENDER TO THE WHIMS OF YOUR CAPTORS.

        • JoeAm says:

          The reality is that the Philippines is locked into dynasties as the US is locked into billionaires. The practical matter is how to go from here to better, and I propose that working with the existing power structure is better than spending decades trying to reconfigure democracy to get better at it, while problems go unaddressed. I’ve not studied Japan or China of late, but I’d imagine local or business power collectives still rule many roosts. Anyway, the real issue is the Philippines, as she is. Which, democratically, is a mess.

          • Micha says:

            It’s an intellectual weakness – toxic and malevolent to the idea of democracy.

            I’m reminded of the infamous and repulsive advice of Raul Manglapuz to Filipina maids in Saudi Arabia that when rape is imminent, just lie back and enjoy it.

            For christssakes, stop spreading this nonsense.

        • distant observer says:

          I see where your argument is coming from Micha. However, neither China nor Japan really got rid of their dynastic power structure. In Japan of course, the dynasty has been “republicanized” while in China it just comes in different clothes.
          If you think about it: there’s not really any country on earth that has really overcome dynastic and elite leadership. To have something like this, it would probably resemble Marxism in its true form (which we know has never existed so far). I guess that’s where Joe’s thinking comes from.

    • distant observer, kinda like this?

      “Even after enormous upheavals and seemingly irrevocable changes, the same pattern has always reasserted itself, just as a gyroscope will always return to equilibrium, however far it is pushed one way or the other.

      The aims of these three groups are entirely irreconcilable. The aim of the High is to remain where they are. The aim of the Middle is to change places with the High. The aim of the Low, when they have an aim – for it is an abiding characteristic of the Low that they are too much crushed by drudgery to be more than intermittently conscious of anything outside their daily lives – is to abolish all distinctions and create a society in which all men shall be equal.

      Thus throughout history a struggle which is the same in its main outlines recurs over and over again. For long periods the High seem to be securely in power, but sooner or later there always comes a moment when they lose either their belief in themselves or their capacity to govern efficiently, or both. They are then overthrown by the Middle, who enlist the Low on their side by pretending to them that they are fighting for liberty and justice. As soon as they have reached their objective,

      the Middle thrust the Low back into their old position of servitude, and themselves become the High.”

  2. People say that there wouldn’t be any Hollywood if it wasn’t for gays and nepotism, Joe. Same thing I suppose. I like nepotism, its kinda like brand loyalty.

    • JoeAm says:

      It exists, for sure. Everywhere, I reckon.

      • Dynasty by definition is continuous , Joe. So although there’s name recognition and branding going on, the fact still remains that (at least at the national level) there’s no dynasty because there’s huge breaks between say Cory and PNoy, GMA and dad,

        even with the coming Leni-Sara 2022 tandem 😉 , Joe, you’ll have a break between Duterte and Inday Sara (as VP).

        • JoeAm says:

          Yes, that’s true. Family members are individuals, and dynasties rise and fall. But as the UP report shows, they exist as a real, factual socio-political structure. The Espinas dominate Biliran province. Governor, mayors, councilors, everywhere. They take their commissions, run a decent government, but tend to ooze along rather than power reforms. They should power reforms.

          • kasambahay says:

            lose of motivation, the bane of heightened dynasties, fall into a rut too, and become complacent in themselves: too popular and and so hard to fault.

            until someone challenge them and threatened their position, then they’ll show muscles and move heaven and earth, often taking no prisoners. their infinite wealth, resources and utter influence, etc. make them uber formidable opponents. best to be on their good side if you know what’s good for ya.

            yet there are few courageous others who stand on their way. and refuse to bow down.

        • Juan Luna says:

          “So although there’s name recognition and branding going on, the fact still remains that (at least at the national level) there’s no dynasty because there’s huge breaks between say Cory and PNoy, GMA and dad…”
          Completely wrong, my friend. Name recognition is most easily inheritable in dynasty. There is no such thing as break between Cory and PNoy or GMA and Dado because both never stopped being an Aquino or Macapagal. Name recognition helps PNoy and Gloria to get selected and elected even though they have entered the political scene several years after their predecessor’s exit from politics.

          And the same is happening now to Marcos Jr. Who in the Philippines or even abroad don’t know who Marcos (the father) is? He died in 1989 but the name lives on.

          • I’m pretty sure “continuous” meaning no breaks is an important qualifier in that definition, Juan.

            Thus if there are long periods of breaks, then its not really a dynasty. Name recognition maybe or brand loyalty, but without the continuous thread of rule, technically its not


            That’s like saying the 2017 series is the same as the 1976 series, Juan! does not make sense!

            • Karl Garcia says:

              I am sure the Young and the Restless is the same as the old one, it must be renamed the Old and the restless.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Some one correct me please. Dynasties here in PH means you and a relative or relative of your relative(2nd or 3rd degree?) in government. They may even include in laws. Man dictionaries are dynamic and not dynastic. Anti-dynasty law proposals wanted them banned and that IS impossible.

            • from Article II, karl…

              SECTION 23. The State shall encourage non-governmental, community-based, or sectoral organizations that promote the welfare of the nation.

              SECTION 24. The State recognizes the vital role of communication and information in nation-building.

              SECTION 25. The State shall ensure the autonomy of local governments.

              SECTION 26. The State shall guarantee equal access to opportunities for public service, and prohibit political dynasties as may be defined by law.

              SECTION 27. The State shall maintain honesty and integrity in the public service and take positive and effective measures against graft and corruption.


              Basically, that series of sections is like a child’s Christmas wish, karl. “as may be defined by law”, looks like you’ve already defined it, but i’m assuming the dynastic families have not. thus the status quo and Joe’s blog.

     that is a perfect example, karl!!! its a show that’s been around March 26, 1973 – present (apparently with no break, lol i don’t watch it but that’s what Wiki says). So that’s a dynasty, if no breaks.

              karl, your example of peppering local, regional and national gov’t with family members i don’t think its dynasty per se , but peppering with family members does seem like an issue needing a solution (Joe’s LGU focus).

              But its no Section 26 IMHO, karl, unless you play loose with word definition, but best to play tight when it comes to legislative definitions, and I think that’s the weakness of these dynasty laws, because peppering with family members is not technically dynasty.

              So what word captures “peppering” gov’t with family members. and how do you enforce it.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Joe said legislating the enabling law would be futile.
                Not gonna happen anyway almost all the legislators have dynasties

              • I guess just ensure other “dynasties” can partake, to include school groups and religious groups (like INC, etc.) and labor groups, etc. so they can also pepper the gov’t.

          • Juan Luna says:

            My friend, there is no such thing as ‘long periods of breaks’. Dynasty comes and go. One dynasty continue to exist WITHOUT BREAKS until it ends and another dynasty replaces it. Marcos died but the power and influence remains. No breaks. Ninoy and Cory dies years ago but PNoy was able to capitalized on the ‘Aquino’ brand. No breaks. So is Gloria with Dado.

            What is supposed to be the ‘break’ between Digong and Sara?

            As long as one have the name recognition dynasty continues.

            • Do you see Qin, Shang and Zhou and Han dynasties interspersing with one another? like halo-halo?

              • Juan Luna says:

                I’d like to see ‘long periods of breaks’ in the illustration.

              • There’s none, if there were it wouldn’t be a dynasty, Juan! Thus dynasties are continuous. temporal monopolies of power.

                Like saying Adams, Roosevelts and Bush were dynasties over here. Maybe you can get away with it as an adjective, like they were dynastic families. But no for dynasty. Sorry.

              • Juan Luna says:

                You said if there is ‘huge breaks’ there is no dynasty. No dynasty with Cory and PNoy, GMA and dad. You did not specify what ‘huge breaks between’ is that is why I presented an opposite view.

                Let’s go first to the meaning of dynasty.
                1. A family of rulers who rule over a country for a long period of time

                Example of dynasty.
                A succession of rulers from the same family or line. A family or group that maintains power for several generations.

                Unless you clarify what “huge breaks between’ is, your statement about it will remain a mystery.

              • Juan Luna says:

                A decade or more? In dynasty a break is an end. Just look at the illustration you showed. Each dynasty has reached its end and another dynasty replaces it.

              • “In dynasty a break is an end. “

                Dude! that’s my POINT!!!

                that’s why there’s no dynasty in the Philippines, just like theres no dynasty in the US.

              • Juan Luna says:

                Here’s why your illustration contradicts you.


              • How does it contradict , Juan? if we can see 10 years or so breaks, then theres no dynasty. We don’t see 10 year breaks in Chinese dynasties hence those are dynasties. Dynasty , no dynasty, where is the contradiction?

    • If you look at the Philippine presidents from Marcos on, it seems like its pretty democratic, in that a lot of views/policies are being entertained by the electorate. Just so happens not much is being delivered as far as deliverables are concerned ( well maybe with the exception of getting faster internet by opening telcomms to competition).

      But if you follow that graph, the ebb and flow is democracy (that’s democracy , Micha). Like ours over here with GOP then Dems running the WH, ebb and flow, etc. etc.

      Joe brings a good point though about local politics whether it be in Biliran, Tarlac (Davids), or Dinagat Surigao (Ecleos). Ecleos i mentioned there.

      So maybe not dynasties at the national level which doesn’t seem to be a big problem there IMHO, but give the national gov’t the ability to rain down fire and brimstone upon local dynasties, like in the previous blog, Jeff Bezos vs. Elon Musk, differentiate who is balance positive vs. balance negative to the public good.

      Marawi was this, so I guess just temper it to where less casualties and collateral are affected. Not literally fire and brimstone.

      So to Micha , you gotta pick which oligarchs are helping and which are not. Makes sense??? Do you have a list? and can we check it twice? who’s naughty or nice.

  3. Karl Garcia says:

    Clan wars that shifted to election wars also has to be considered.
    It is not that there are no challengers, there are.
    Others do not want to get in the way of those clan wars.

  4. NHerrera says:

    Joe, this is interesting and provocative as Lance’s blog piece referred to.

    In the vein of if-facts-change-I-change-my-mind, and in my usual [boring] view of things, I range my feelings using the picture as described by Micha to that of Lance/ Joe. At this point, I am not exactly sure where I stand. Looking forward with great interest for more comments. Bring them on fellows. Good item to exercise the mind in the New Year. 🙂

    Thanks, Joe, Lance, Micha.

    • JoeAm says:

      My view is premised on a factual understanding on three points. (1) Democracy is struggling; it’s hard to do in a forthright, productive way under the warping glare of social media. (2) The need for action is urgent in the face of disease, storms, corruption, and murder as a part of due process. (3) The dynasties are strong and generally respected locally; they need direction to apply their power well and measurement to identify the producers (Pasig City) and laggards (Davao). The article is written with an eye on VP Robredo as the kind of intelligent, pro-active leader who could pull it off. She deals with people very very well.

      • (daughter of Gwen Garcia)

        Mayor of Liloan in Cebu, spokesperson for Inday Sara. Supposedly its her vice-Mayor that does the heavy lifting. But as Mayor she lends her name to the cause of governing her city.

        So technically she’s a dynasty (actually a legacy would be a better term).

        Your 1-3 above, Joe, 1. she’ll be active in social media (having been born in 1981) 2. action oriented since she’s already in office since 2016. 3. again she’s a dynasty/legacy via husband and her family.

        If we could identify more legacies like these already in office, preferably born in 1980s, we can track if they are open to reforms. I think she is for sure, I need to watch and read more about her, but Inday Sara sees something in her. And we may be able to better divine discern Inday Sara’s trajectory by who she surrounds herself.

        But if we can start maybe a running tally of up and coming legacies (from local dynasties), we might be able to see your plan thru here to fruition, Joe, then just have Wil cover them (just don’t ask them about dogs, please no more dog interviews 😉 ).

        • JoeAm says:

          Excellent next steps.

          • She could’ve run for Pres. but decided to go with VP. But she’s been doing this politics stuff since late 20s!!! late 20s, Joe!!! I was making spheres out of my boogers and flicking them towards other Marines who slept with mouths open in my twenties, Joe.. . and we know nothing about her? That’s nuts. What does the media and academia do over there?

            There’s gotta be a concerted effort to know these legacies and if able to, to nudge them towards the greater good.

            • * since her late 20s

              • kasambahay says:

                in the pic, what’s the thing you redacted, an arrow pointing at it. something incriminating, hmmm?

              • Grand Ballroom



                Monte Clair


                Morning Poem (at the lobby)

                Carmine Burgundy


                Body Gym


                kb, the arrow in question seem to be pointing to those items above, I’m thinking a hotel with ballrooms and gym and lobby (where that morning poem will be read?).

              • But directly in front of that signage looks like Cory’s ghost.

            • isk says:

              @ Sir Lance , @ KB
              The image is a blurred image of a lady perhaps of a slow shutter speed camera setting .

            • Juan Luna says:

              She decided to go VP because in a three-man fight (with Leni and Jr.) those who have the machinery and established fan base has the advantage. Also, she knows her capability vis-a-vis the Office of the President: insufficient. Look, Sara became mayor simply because of daddy and she very well know this. She’s in an elite group of Duterte scarecrows (Bong Go and Bato are the other two). If not for daddy, they’re nobodies. She’s the classic example of a product of a political dynasty. Very common in many parts of the archipelago.

              And this Leni-Sara rigmarole, what do we expect from a combination of two persons having different political background and principles? What can Sara contribute to a Leni presidency that Kiko cannot do? A Leni-Kiko combo is the antithesis to the BBM-Sara duo. The former are running against anything the latter represents. The latter is a solid dynasty duo, both privileged and grew up with silver spoon in their mouth. They knew what power and corruption means and can wheel around it with ease. Both rode and capitalized on their father’s popularity and influence as autocratic leaders in their own right.

              Lastly, Sara, had she run for president, would be the candidate with the least qualification because of her age (Pacquiao is the youngest) and limited experience in governance.

              • “She decided to go VP because in a three-man fight (with Leni and Jr.) those who have the machinery and established fan base has the advantage.”

                Does not compute, Juan.

                Leni has no machinery either.

                BBM may have one but he had to partner with Sara.

                Sara had her father’s machinery, and a 90% rating in the poll.

                Hands down Inday Sara by now would’ve out paced Leni and BBM in a 3-way, Juan.

                “The latter is a solid dynasty duo, both privileged and grew up with silver spoon in their mouth. “

                VP Leni’s husband (whose mantle she inherited) and Kiko have been in office (non-executive mind you) since 80s (70s). They’ve not done anything. Why ? because in the end, they were not in executive positions. always needing a committee or consensus to get things done.

                VP Leni as VP does have 6 yrs now, and she did pretty good with what was given her.

                Kiko compared to Inday Sara pales in comparison. Sure you can say her Father is the reason for her executive savvy, but Davao and Mindanao (and the Visayas, particularly Cebu) love her. Maybe that’s just her Dad’s 90% approval rating, rubbing off but I’m thinking after 10 years or so as executive in Davao people see good things thus the high polling.

                My point here they all 4 of them are dynasty, political dynasties just by virtue of them in politics, so political dynasties you ask what they’ve done.

                “Sara, had she run for president, would be the candidate with the least qualification because of her age (Pacquiao is the youngest) and limited experience in governance.”

                American forefathers were in the early 20s to early 30s when they assumed office and rank. I reject you age argument. as for limited experience see above, more experience doesn’t necessarily equate to more things done.

              • Juan Luna says:

                Leni ran under the Liberal Party. She’s now running as independent to accommodate different parties for possible alliances. My friend, when Sara refused and flatly rejected her father’s wish for her to run with Bong Go, she practically lost his ‘machinery’. The 90% poll doesn’t mean a thing now after she filed her certificate of candidacy for VP.

                VP Leni inherited no position from her husband, while Sara, clearly was handed down the mayorship of Davao City. Yes, we can say that because of Jesse Robredo Leni got her start from politics, but he had no hand on the way she coursed her political path because he was deceased already when she entered politics.

                I have no issue of Sara being mayor and well-loved in her city. What we’re here for is the issue of dynasty which I think she and Marcos Jr. clearly symbolizes.

                My argument for age and limited experience is based on facts. Usually children of political families don’t know nothing about the office they’re about to inherit. It’s all just pure power and nepotism that get them started. You remember the first time Sara hogged the headlines? Not because she did something positive as mayor; not because she exemplifies good governance and model leadership. A lot of people came to know that she exist because she punched a lowly court sheriff for simply implementing a court order!

                Again, what can she offer VP Leni, if ever, that Kiko will not be able to do? How to punch a powerless factotum? I’d rather have Pacquiao slide down VP. At least, the Leni-Pacquiao team will have a real power puncher in her administration.

              • “A lot of people came to know that she exist because she punched a lowly court sheriff for simply implementing a court order!”

                And who did the sheriff work for? who did the sheriff represent?

              • Juan Luna says:

                What do you mean who did he work for? He was punched for doing his job! And the mayor, mind you, not her bodyguards nor followers, is the one who did the physical assault. You think Sara will win against that sheriff mano-a-mano? She did that because she knows, with all her bodyguards around and her cute little title, he cannot fight back. Growing entitled, she has no boundaries when it comes to small people, to the powerless.

                Again, will you vote for her on that ‘accomplishment’?


                You haven’t read that yet then.

                After you read that, then you’ll understand why I think that punching incident is a lot bigger a deal than most understand it.

              • Juan Luna says:


                Although the topic of your article was already moot I still read it just to stay on topic.

                From what I gathered, you have no knowledge of the root of the punching incident which you admitted in paragraph 3. You just expressed your personal satisfaction in the way Sara exercise naked power in assaulting an officer in the performance of his duty.

                For you, an assault qualifies one to run for the presidency. I don’t. It was wrong then and still wrong now. There are means to address an erring officer and physical assault from a higher authority is not one of them.

                You see Sara’s heart in the right place, I see her heartless character for displaying a complete lack of feeling or consideration.

                You see Sara as tough, I see in her toughness of face in unleashing violence in front of her constituents.

                You see Sara as caring, I also see caring. Caring in how she will project cruelty and barbarity in her person by beating a lowly government employee who’s only crime was to do his job.

                Nope, my friend, Sara is bad news then and would be fake news tomorrow.

              • “There are means to address an erring officer and physical assault from a higher authority is not one of them.”

                Did she not avert a riot and potential massacre situation?

                Thus a few punches is fine, so long as lives were saved, seriously injuries averted.

              • * serious injuries

              • Juan Luna says:

                Riot and massacre? Umm, I don’t know about that.

                Let’s not forget, squatting is illegal and the sheriff was simply doing his job of implementing a court order. If Sara wants to avert a riot and a massacre, why punch only the sheriff? Why not assault also those squatters who are actually threatening violence against the duly constituted authority?

                Look, my friend, I know you are a strong supporter of Sara, but you cannot just sweep under the rug a glaring wrongful act she’s done as mayor.

                Fair is fair, Sara was wrong on that incident and she got away with it because of………..dynasty (we’re still on topic!), lol!

              • “the sheriff was simply doing his job of implementing a court order.”

                You basically just made my point for me, Juan. thanks!

        • “We have so many children without fathers and the challenges of this in society today, we notice,” Pope Francis said. “Fathers are not born but made. A man does not become a father by bringing a child into the world, but by taking up the responsibility to care for that child.” He used the example of Joseph, who brought up Jesus, and parents who choose to adopt children.

          Pope Francis said “many couples do not have children because they do not want to, or they only have one and not more. But they have domestic animals – two dogs, two cats.” He called the decision not to have children a form of “selfishness,”


          Preach on, Pope Francis!

          I’ve always held it against rich Filipinos who have pure bred dogs (Ka Leody’s Corgi) when so maybe stray dogs are pooping on the streets. if you don’t want kids, adopt the street dogs forchrissakes!

    • George Yao says:

      Isn’t local political dynasties some kind of feudal system? I recall vaguely learning a long time ago in college that the feudal system was bad which was why it was abolished. Has that thinking changed?

      • You’re thinking of hacienderos, bro. I don’t think Mrs. Frasco has her own peasants, maybe her mom still does though they probably own land and servants to care for said properties.

      • JoeAm says:

        Hmmm. Good and bad shifts with time and context, and ability to measure and publicize successes, failures, and reasons. I think the best rule is not to handicap opportunity with confined ideas, but assess where we are, where we need to go, and, pragmatically, how to get there. The starting point for the Philippines is feudal. Now where do we need to go? I don’t think the objective is a defined political format, but stability, more wealth (productivity), and security. Why waste time on the structure?

      • kasambahay says:

        george, moving with times, there’s this disturbing merger of the dynasty from the south joining with dynasty from the north mayhap to form the dynasty of dynasties: the super dynasty and thier memo of understanding is term sharing – maximum power for both of them, all in one go.

        thank goodness for voters, vp leni got in the way. my vp is such a scene stealer! and the much heralded dampener of what would have been the axis of killers.

        2022 and another dynastic merger is in the offing, same term sharing agenda, north and south: horizontal not vertical. the danger methink is, win or lose, the loser will be provided a backdoor to power.

    • NHerrera says:

      Another short item from me. It is not straightforward or easy to do — because agreement among discussants will be difficult — but it comes down in this non-pure world to doing the cost (morally, psychologically, historically, whatever) – benefit (similar whatever’s) analysis.

      • NH,

        here’s a cost/benefit in action…

        “Liloan has been made to bear the burden of the organizers’ inability to ensure that prior permits were secured from Cebu City a year ago, and that contingency plans are in place. Barely a month before the race, I am expected to say yes to an impossible proposal,” Frasco added.

        Sunrise Events Inc. (SEI), organizer of Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championship, has been asking the mayors in the northern Cebu — Consolacion, Liloan, Compostela, Danao City and Carmen — for its permission to allow an 8-hour closure of the North Coastal Road and the National Highway.

        She did the right thing for the people. Cebu Congresswoman Gwendolyn Garcia is standing by her daughter, Liloan Mayor Christina Garcia-Frasco, over her decision to refuse a shutdown of two major roads just to make way for the renowned Ironman 70.3 triathlon.

        Frasco has been getting some flak online for looking like a party pooper as she turned down the proposed closure of two streets to make way for the biking leg of the race. However, Garcia said her daughter is not in the wrong.

        “In public service, whatever the spin may be (political or pecuniary) these truths shall prevail: The greater good for the greater majority. Always. The people’s welfare above all else. Always,” Garcia said to Frasco’s defense.


        NH, you get a sense that a mother’s teachings and values is being heeded put into action. Cost-benefit, a few triatheletes butt hurt, while a lot more people don’t have to wait for them to bike, swim and run (or whatever the stupid order of this thing is). Nice little win, and we get a glimpse of her character.

  5. Culture is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing as it kept societies stable for most of the millennia when people didn’t have modern tools especially to acquire and spread knowledge and the accumulated ancestral traditions were everything people had. A curse as it adjusts only slowly, people tend to keep habits acquired from their specific groups – take Korea which abolished slavery in 1894 only and the Joseon dynasty a bit later, but now you have the highly feudal behavior of chaebol families in the South, notwithstanding their role in progress, and the dynasty of the Kims in the nominally Communist North. But at least the South with democracy managed to recently raise inheritance taxes and make a heir of Samsung which is said to control a whopping 20-30% of the Sokor economy pay a huge sum. One may indeed have to work with what one has, but make sure those who are at an advantage give back to society and contribute to general well-being. VP Leni helping the poor via private donors for example.

    Those who say Imperial Manila and say the Philippines is elitist should look at Indonesia where EVERY SINGLE PRESIDENT since Independence was Javanese, the ethnic group that ran the Majapahit empire, and allegedly the power in the government is in the hands of members of the Javanese priyayi, the native nobility of old. Javanese has 4 hierarchic levels of speech while Korean has 6, reflecting attitudes. Philippine society evolved from the “Raiding, Trading and Feasting” of pre-1521 thru “An Anarchy of Families” of the postwar period to what the UP study is describing. How to evolve things from there?

    Jesse Robredo as Interior Secretary set up metrics for LGU performance, that is certainly one useful measure. For general prosperity in the “chiefdoms” which they still de facto are, making sure there is Trading and Feasting but getting rid of the Raiding aspect which is dysfunctional today is the challenge. Especially Raiding others and Feasting one’s own supporters which is deeply trapo and a zero sum game in today’s reality. It was viable when the chiefdoms of the archipelago were not yet so close to the rest of the world, typhoons weren’t as strong yet and houses made of light materials were quickly rebuilt. Friendly competition between “city-states” would be the more productive and modern version of it, something the likes of Naga, Iloilo and Cebu have understood already.

    My father’s birth town of Tiwi, Albay BTW has several political families that kind of take turns running the place, one of them has been there since the late 19th century. Another was there in the late 19th century and early 20th but seems to have petered out. Their surname was Cruel BTW, don’t know if they were cruel. So it doesn’t have to be one family for all of time, how to make sure people still are able to replace those who they don’t like. Stopping impunity, civilizing the system is probably key to this.

    The Robredos have a rule among themselves that only one family member may be in politics at one given time. Aika Robredo who was with her parents a lot on the campaign trail and has demonstrated political instincts plus has a natural authority akin to that of her father may not be a candidate for anything while her mother is in politics, for instance. But VP Leni is not imposing that rule on the Binays, for instance. Anyhow thanks for this article which is definitely food for thought and further fleshing out.

    • JoeAm says:

      Thanks for that overview. It was actually Jesse Robredo’s LGU improvement initiative that set the stage for my dynasty-friendly proposal, setting up some performance metrics. Leni Robredo’s refusal to alliw her family to become dynastic suggests she might not be fond of the proposal, unless she saw it as a way to accelerate results, as I do.

      • VP Leni did mention in an interview that she told her husband when they were newlyweds that she didn’t want them to get too used to politics. Usually local politicians in the Philippines have a big house where people go in and out, she insisted on a small family-only place. As she is pragmatic towards others even as she is strict with herself and with family, I do think she might be conducive to her husband’s LGU metrics.

        Though she certainly isn’t sympathetic to the old, exploitative dynasties – after all Jesse Robredo beat the established Villafuertes and Kaka Bag-ao who supplanted the crazy Ecleos on Dinagat Islands is clearly VP Leni’s friend..

        • Jeep says:

          Dynasties do come and go and sometimes fadeaway. But those happen rarely and if ever, a new dynasty rises. Josons of Nueva Ecija ruled the province for almost 4 decades, only to be replaced by the Umalis.

          Another factor to consider is gerrymandering that happens. Dynasties are too wise now and shrewd to slug it out and kill each other. Often, they are happy to rule as mayors and congressman of a district which is why it is very common to see 3-4 dynasties every province. The pie, government coffers and “business opportunities” are big enough for them.

          This brings me to the bad effect of dynasties. It kills meritocracy, stifles accountability and promotes “palakasan” system. Only relatives or close friends of dynasties benefit from the system.

          • It is definitely part of VP Leni’s agenda to remove the palakasan system, create equal market access, she has made recent statements on this.

            HOW she will so that with a Congress of dynasties, don’t ask me..

            • Jeep says:

              Ahaha yeah, that’s a tall ask. But equal market access even at a small scale at first will go a long way.

            • kasambahay says:

              chameleons, them dynasties and survivalist. when leni assumes the presidency, there will be turncoats from congress! all promising new era of cooperation, the usual. until such a time . . .

          • Karl Garcia says:


            New congredsional districts, new baranggays, splitting the province all in the name of having your family or trusted non gamiky member stay in power.

    • Speaking to TeleRadyo Friday, lawyer Christian Monsod described the scenario as “frightening” as he said this could lead to “authoritarianism”.

      “The way the plan is panning out, it looks like there is a plan just beyond accountability. It’s to consolidate power, consolidate total power in a coalition that brings together the Marcoses, the Romualdezes, the Arroyos and the Dutertes,” he said.

      “If they can pull it through, we will really have authoritarianism especially if the Supreme Court again defers to the President by ruling that the Anti-Terrorism Act is constitutional.

      “That will complete the picture of a plan for total consolidation of power in our country and that’s frightening,” he added.

      (from kb’s link above)

      The purpose of power is to consolidate, businesses become monopolies a nd political parties become juggernauts. This all relates to me and Micha’s OPTIMIZATION talk.

      Over here, when a president gets elected his campaign/political machinery gets elected with him and he gets afforded a bunch of political appointments, so lets say you were a senior in college and you campaigned for so and so, when so and so gets elected you get a free position say at the Dept of State (lets say youre an int’l politics major). it all depends on the president how much he/she wants to max this opportunity out in filling federal gov’t with his peons—

      Trump i dunno if he knew of this system or he just chose not to, but Trump was probably the only president who didn’t fill at the bottom ranks (personally I think because his plan was to cut gov’t, he didn’t feel filling it at the lowest ranks made sense).

      So Mr. Monsod (thanks to kb) is correct, those guys will consolidate, how well VP Leni and others will consolidate too is all up to them. if they don’t, then they of course lose. Consolidation is the name of the game.

      Ireneo, that “Cruel” surname is funny,

      but what caught my attention was your mention of Kims in the north, weirdly a bunch of Kims (and Ongs) are also in the South, Muslim Chinese married into Moros, so i assume Chinese who migrated to Philippines just like Chinese up north, they got rich thru commerce and married political/datu power only Muslim.

      In a sense that’s Jeep‘s “meritocracy” in action no? People of merit get the reward of marrying into established power fams. Thus Jeep’s and Joe’s ideas are actually in action in the Philippines. So the opposite of this is, can people without power/merit achieve power in the Philippines, like Micha’s vision of “democracy”, no bodies getting elected, and again we have that in Ka Leody no? but Ka Leody’s path is probably not as established, but I assume that ‘s the purpose of UP no? even though MRP hated that school with a passion,

      UP (especially Diliman and i guess Los Banyos in the hard sciences) that was its purpose under the Americans to pepper the Philippines with more “enlightened” Filipinos. Marcos Sr., Ninoy, Binay, etc. etc. came out of this system. Upending the old systems like datu/hacienderos. So its working. its working, its just like walking in place though. So that’s the problem, why the seeming 1 step forward , 2 steps back? Here I would argue the opposite of Mr. Monsod…

      Not no consolidation!!! people gotta consolidate, Joe. Mr. Monsod represents what’s wrong in the Philippines no understanding of how the system is in place, nor how to leverage said system. all for what for some ideal of “democracy”. IF YOU CAN’T BE WITH THE ONE YOU LOVE, LOVE THE ONE YOU’RE WITH. Micha doesn’t get this. be practical.

      “In just three years since his assumption of Office, Mayor Duke Frasco has more than doubled the salaries of the Local School Board Teachers and has added more locally paid teachers, ensuring that the need for quality teachers in Liloan is addressed. Mayor Duke Frasco has also been instrumental in the construction of many new classrooms and in the renovation of old and dilapidated classrooms in all public schools in Liloan. Truly, Mayor Duke Frasco has remained steadfast in his belief that a sturdy foundation in Education ensures a bright and vibrant future for the children of this country.

      Before entering public service, Mayor Duke Frasco worked as an Internal Audit Consultant for Protiviti, Inc., one of the leading consulting firms in the world. He has audited several multinational companies in various cities in the United States, as well as in the United Kingdom.

      Mayor Duke Frasco obtained his Bachelor of Science in Accounting (B.S.A.) and Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) degrees from the prestigious Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California, where he graduated with honors and received various awards and scholarships.”

      This is right by the airport here, LAX. So I would further ask aside from UP, these new crop of politicians how many are foreign educated?

      • Oh, and as follow-up. Ireneo, are there politicians that rose to power from Los Banyos (UP) who were from the hard sciences, like Angela Merkel— so maybe not UP Law School but the answer to the Philippine problem is to have more scientists in politics!

        • In Germany political parties are the equivalent of families, people who succeed in politics here usually start with the youth wing of the respective party in their teens or at the very latest join the student org of the party during university. Merkel is a bit of a special cade even for Germany as her group which was part of the 1989 movement in East Germany joined the West German Christian Democrats and she originally was classic minority quota, female and East German, barely taken seriously as she was very modestly dressed, the classic “Lutheran pastor’s daughter” which she literally is, and in a very patriarchal political party but she broke out when she turned against her original mentor Helmut Kohl after he lost the 1998 election.

          Political parties in Germany are thus like a mix of trade unions and fraternities with a) card-carrying members and b) mostly lifetime loyalty. Thus someone without massive resources can become a candidate – even if among Christian Democrats these are usually Social Science grads – Kohl was a history Ph.D. or lawyers, among Social Democrats the usual lawyers and people with union backgrounds, lots of professors and teachers as well as they can easily get academic leave for their term. But getting one’s candidacy means the party funds a lot. A local candidate may spend something like €15K by himself but hey some cars cost more and that is tax-deductible. The party gets a campaign refund from the state based on the number of seats it wins, Australia I heard has a similar system, so with that plus membership fees and donor money parties are self-perpetuating unlike the empty shells of parties in the Philippines. VP Leni had to borrow money from in-laws to pay COMELEC the fees for the recount Marcos Jr. forced upon her, it wasn’t financed by the Liberal Party. Someone on Twitter who isn’t exactly poor told me that a few million pesos is what you need to run for a national position in the Philippines, I think then I was ribbing him to run. Thus there are systemic reasons why certain families stay in power over there. Don’t even know if there are limits on campaign spending like in France, for instance. Someone once wrote you have to spend more money – normally, unless you have a movement behind you like VP Leni today – than you can earn back honestly and that is one reason either you have corrupt types or very rich types like Aquino and Roxas who probably just deduct their expenses from taxes. Germany you have to rise up the ranks of a party over maybe two decades until you are at national level and are made a candidate, and two terms at least means you have not just earners good money as an MP, you have accrued good pension claims as well. So it does pay as well but in a upfront way. Re how positions are stacked by political parties here, that is another topic, but it also happens. Just that someone once in the civil service has lifetime tenure and the career civil service machinery runs regardless. And there is more of a consensus on right and wrong here so it is rarely a conflict.

          • “Political parties in Germany are thus like a mix of trade unions and fraternities with a) card-carrying members and b) mostly lifetime loyalty.”

            Ah, so this is the alternative to families and dynasties then.

            I don’t think we have those here, I know most politicians start out at school boards or city councils (in small cities). from there if Dems or GOP notice them, kinda like scout for college sports watch high school games, then they start grooming them. I they shine, then its national positions like congress or state legislature. But then there’s also the private sector approach ie business owner or CEOs running for office.

            For example the 2022 LA city mayoral candidate thus far are ,

            • You compare also AOC rise thru Bernie’s political machinery,


              “During the 2016 primary, Ocasio-Cortez worked as an organizer for Bernie Sanders’s presidential campaign. After the general election, she traveled across America by car, visiting places such as Flint, Michigan, and Standing Rock Indian Reservation in North Dakota, and speaking to people affected by the Flint water crisis and the Dakota Access Pipeline.[37] In an interview she recalled her December 2016 visit to Standing Rock as a tipping point, saying that before that, she had believed that the only way to run for office effectively was to have access to wealth, social influence, and power. But her visit to North Dakota, where she saw others “putting their whole lives and everything that they had on the line for the protection of their community”, inspired her to begin to work for her own community. One day after she visited North Dakota, she got a phone call from Brand New Congress, which was recruiting progressive candidates (her brother had nominated her soon after Election Day 2016).”

              you do get a sense that there’s probably more democracy here in the US due to all sorts of political action groups willing to fund promising candidates, i’m sure there’s a quid pro quo, politics is after all transactional. But what

              are the equivalents of Brand New Congress, Lincoln Projects, etc. that exist and field candidates (not from dynasties ) in the Philippines?

      • LCPL_X, the big change in power structure in Tiwi, Albay was brought about by the abaca boom, with new men coming in from places like Pampanga like the energetic Mayor Higino Templado mentioned in this link: but also my great-great-grandfather Marcelino Saenz who like Templado was an abaca planter AND lived in Cararayan (Bikol for nice place), the new part of town between uphill Cali or Naga, the hot springs area and seaside Tigbi, the original Tiwi town center. I know the uphill road from the sea to Cararayan from a literal youthful pub crawl with my uncle.

        Now it is documented that Templado was from Pampanga, and I know that Saenz’s future son-in-law Hilario Salazar came from Batangas at the turn of the century, but what makes me think Saenz came from elsewhere? The Claveria decree of 1849 giving Filipinos surnames was applied in a funny way around Mount Mayon, the Franciscans in charge of the province went around the mountain with the alphabet, the most famous result being most surnames in Oas on the Visayan sea side (Rinconada area) starting with R, in Tiwi “original” surnames that date back to the decree start with C: Corral, Cruel, Caruso, Carbonell, Clutario. The latter family intermarried with Templados, so you have mayors with both surnames in the history of the town. It was like Mindanao was later settled by Visayans, except in our case there was a bit of a balance struck between settlers and natives. The leading class is thus a mix of both, see Muslim examples also.

        As for Tausugs there is the historian Samuel K. Tan, so yes there were Hokkien who successfully integrated into that society at the top. Even more curious is the story of German seafarer Schück who became part of Sulu society, one of his descendants Michael Shuck Montemayor wrote about him, the Sultan obviously had good use for an experienced seafarer, a bit like the fictional Englishman in the 1980s Shogun series: – meaning the history of families and dynasties in the Philippines is fluid as well.

        • Senator Emmanuel Dapidran “Pac-man” Pacquiao.

          Pakyaw in Visayan (I don’t know what the Tagalog would be, maybe same word?) means to purchase wholesale. Meaning going into a girlie bar, you “pakyaw” 10 girls for the night. There’s a big Cebuano politician who did this nightly and the 10 girls (more depending on day of the wk) once back to his abode would have the chance to “ilug” meaning to fight for (kb can you check this definition as I’m not sure), so whoever grabs his thing first, gets to be the girl for the night, damage given to the 9 girls who go home, then the 1 chosen girl gets extra for winning the grab— I found it really weird, i didn’t witness it just stories from his bodyguards , so the thing that turned the dude on was the “ilug” portion, since everything after seemed normal.

          But i digress, Ireneo, I’m wondering now how that Pacquiao name came to be.

          Also my secondary point here is meritocracy does exist in the Philippines, Pac-man is Senator! I also hope that weightlifter gold medalist will take up politics.

    • LOL! from the comments I get that its somewhat condescending. So more of this definitely, Ireneo.

  6. Juan Luna says:

    On the three premise posed by JoeAm in the article, no. 1 is amenable in my opinion, which states that,

    “Democracy is struggling; it’s hard to do in a forthright, productive way under the warping glare of social media.”

    Democracy is grappling with multifarious and simultaneous problems besetting the country, from the pandemic to the economic stagnation up to deviant directions the political and social path is going. These factors continue to challenge the very foundation of our democratic system. Democracy is not built for speed. It is a painfully slow and inefficient process because it is based on consultations, deliberations and negotiations to arrive at an agreed-upon judgement or consensus.

    America, among the oldest democracy in the world and where our system of democracy was derived from, is currently locked horns among it’s own people in contesting and protecting the very existence of democracy in their own country.

    I guess we just have to do the same and try to have more and not less of democracy. And we can do that by staying away from the system of dynasty that perennially pester our political system.

    Can dynasty build a better Philippines?

    We have had our own share of ‘dynasties’ in our history that have lord it over regions or provinces for years and years. If the answer to that question is yes, examples can easily be had to prove that, indeed, dynasty works. Unfortunately, we don’t have that proof. Before and after EDSA ’86, political families have been proliferating in the archipelago. They have ruled their territory for centuries and maintain power within the family short of owning the city or province they occupy and control.

    Power begets power.

    That is the basic operation of dynasty. As the words suggest, it should make government easy to operate and faster to respond because power is concentrated to only an entitled few. But we all know that is not true and it is too long to enumerate on this blog the reason why.

    So, yes, it’s a no to dynasty.

    • kasambahay says:

      no to dynasty for me too. the way they cover up for each other and absolved each other’s mistakes and wrongdoings! is maxi irritating.

      • Juan, kb, et al. So if no to dynasty, what do you have to offer as solution, aside from this ideal that democracy is best; I was part of this democracy peddling during GWOT, look what it got us, down trillions and nothing but a world tour shirt to show for our efforts.

        • JoeAm says:

          And how long will it take to get there, and how many laws overburdened with tape, the color red.

        • Juan Luna says:

          I’m very sure I’m not the right person to suggest a ‘solution’ as to whether or not the kind of system we have right now should either be maintained or replace. I’m also not saying our democratic system of government is the best there is because clearly there are problems in the system. What I do know is that adopting a system of dynasty is a backward step to take because it will only aggravate the current inequity and injustice prevailing in the country. Too much power concentrated in the hands of a select few is not a good formula for good governance.

          It’s hard to imagine that a country with a population of over 100M will be run and controlled by elite class of people who have the monopoly of wealth, education and political connections.

          I say, to improve the system we have, let’s elect to office people of integrity and honesty. We all should endeavor to do what is right for the country and not just for the select entitled few. I know it is easier said than done but I’d rather engage on that than participate in a US-like kind of movement (attack of the Capitol) whose objective is to weaken democracy.

        • kasambahay says:

          our society flounders coz we got leader with calamitous ideas. and tragically, sometimes we got leader with the right ideas but with poor to no leadership qualities.

          until a leader with good values and strong leadership comes along, our society flounders.

          if we have sound to very sound judicial system where no one is above the law, the wrongs done by dynasties are put in check; corrected, and wrongdoers are put in jail. dynasty or not.

          weak leader coupled with even weaker judicial system equals dynasties running riot, lol!

    • JoeAm says:

      Look forward, not back, and figure out how to energize the nation. Through fewer dynasties? How do you get there? Through clean national government? Aquino couldn’t do it. My point is to build on what the Philippines is and always has been. Not endlessly and fruitlessly try to reconfigure it. Yes, it would take a Robredo to do it well. Not a self-dealer or conceptual light-weight.

      • NHerrera says:

        Indeed, Joe, the situation is the reality of our situation and the difficult part:

        A ———————> B

        Going from A where we are to that Utopian B of a Democracy via the arrow representing Rudyard Kipling’s six serving men: What and Why and When; And HOW and Where and Who.

        Emphasis on the realistic, achievable HOW.

        • Looking at development examples of different countries, not scientifically but more on a gut level, it seems that ensuring mass prosperity comes first before eliminating corruption and other social ills. Once people have a sense of not being in danger of sinking back to square one like in Snakes and Ladders, they will not be so overly intent anymore on short-term gain and securing it by unfair means. In terms of prisoner’s dilemma anthropologists have found out – common sense actually – that people play less zero-sum games when they see that the outcome is usually positive and that it pays to play fair. Usually people who are less “hungry” in attitude are easier to deal with, so make society as a whole less “hungry” first. Of course try to make things fairer as a basis for more equal opportunities but don’t try to overlegislate and overcontrol human nature. Not that I would know exactly how to do it but broadly that is what makes sense to me.

          • NHerrera says:

            Agree, with a little nitpicking change in phraseology: from ensuring mass prosperity to the more realistic — PH setting of — ensuring reasonable mass comfort in their lives.

      • Juan Luna says:

        To energize the nation, everybody should have a fair shot in running for public office. Everybody should be equal, at least, in election laws to be able to compete and contest fairly and squarely. That means certain restrictions against powerful groups or people must be put in place to level the playing field. For example, members of political families must not be allowed to run for the same office consecutively or alternately; families on the first degree, at least, whose parents have been convicted of graft and corruption must be prohibited from running for public office.

        Dynasty by nature is the opposite of fair play. Dynasty is political patronage that we need like a hole in our heads. If we’re going to look forward and get a better chance in the future, political dynasty should be in the rear view mirror.

        • JoeAm says:

          The big problem with that stance are that idealism is inefficient, going nowhere, because the proposed new laws would try to contravene a deeply ingrained social system. If it is ‘unequal’, it’s because citizens like it that way. They like their mini-gods. Build on it. Stop wasting time noodling about a non-existent perfect system.

          • Juan Luna says:

            Who knew that we’re going to have a new government and a constitution way back in the late ‘80s? But those fighting against the dictatorship did not doubt nor pause to think that their effort to topple Marcos might only go to waste. That since Marcos has been lording it over for more than 20 years, why opt to change and challenge him when he’s controlled everything? Why not let him be?

            Everything starts from an idea, an idea of believing or pursuing a vision or belief in order to make a difference or a change for the better. Sure, we’re not going to have a perfect system for there is no such thing, but at least we make an effort to change the situation we’ve come to in order to improve the future when we pass the baton to the next generation.

            People ‘like it’ because they don’t have a choice. They are controlled by the powerful and the moneyed. Their ‘mini-gods’ will continue to play as them because they know people have no choice but to succumbed to their power and influence.

            Ingrained in our culture and character is the adherence and loyalty to our family. What we would like to see in the future is for powerful families to have restrictions in political participation compared to an open-ended engagement being practice right now. I continue to believe that there is always the possibility that people themselves will do away with it by voting out these political families.

            I agree, the political dynasty is not easy to get rid of, in fact, I’m pretty sure it’s not going away in our lifetime. Even if VP Leni gets the plum it’s surely as night follows day, dynasty is here to stay.

            • JoeAm says:

              Marcos had bad aims and processes. A president like Leni Robredo would apply local powers for good aims and processes. Dynasties are not inherently bad. They are powerful. Use that power.

              • Juan Luna says:

                “Dynasties are not inherently bad.”
                Maybe from the standpoint of political families that make up a dynasty. The democratic ideal of “all men are created equal” gives indication that dynasty is anything but good. If certain people are more privileged simply by name or birth to enter politics the idea of equal opportunity simply dies.

              • JoeAm says:

                Idealism vs achievement. You hold to the vision of perfect equality, I see achievement as a better and more pragmatic goal. Equality is a myth because as soon as one person acquires a better job or home, he is inherently unequal. Don’t worry about it. Build a better, more productive nation and everyone moves up.

  7. Karl Garcia says:

    A province can havw three names lording over for decades, a new name will appear but some maybe dummies or beholden to rhe godfather or something like that.

    But the neweer gen may offer improvements doing the enoughis enough addage.

    • Karl Garcia says:

      Bbm and sara is different.
      Are they any differenr tgan their folks?

      • Karl Garcia says:

        There are young people who had seen enough, but I doubt Marcos Jr. And Duterte-Carpio care.
        If LCX hates the status quo then he should not bet on Sara.

      • kasambahay says:

        could could bbm and sara be any different from their own umbilical cords, lol! it’s sickening how they talk about legacy this and legacy that, how privileged, how proud, how blessed, how enriched and endowed they are by the brand of their angkan. stellar! at papayongan pa. propelled.

        gloria arroyo puts it mischievously, children of presidents rise to the occasion!

        • “If LCX hates the status quo then he should not bet on Sara.”

          Economic status quo, karl, that’s why I’m for MMT, I’m against the Jekyll island rules.

          But let’s say Inday SARA is status quo,

          the existing state of affairs, especially regarding social or political issues.

          What “status quo” does she represent? state your evidence. if assumption what assumptions are based on. etc. etc. what existing state of affairs does Inday SARA represent.

          • “could sara be any different from their own umbilical cords, lol!”

            That’s an assumption. back it with evidence, karl.

          • Karl Garcia says:

            Same same I do not see anything new that we have not seen before.

            Look at Davao so many decades of Dutertes but not much to show.
            Dnt get me wrong, I love Davao that is where my maternal grandparebts spent more than half of their lives. And I have aunts, unckes and cousibs there

            • karl, we’ve been depending on Nuell Duterte’s opinions when all this time you have friggin’ relatives in DAVAO?!!!

              talk about burying the lead.

              What do your relatives say about Sara, and what proofs to they have either or or, like is she really a drunkard, is she lesbian (cuz i’m sensing lesbian vibes from Inday Sara, or it could be just her being macho taking from her Dad’s play book).

              Spill the beans, karl. Do your relatives love her, hate her, fear her, or just meh… ? We’ve been wasting our time with Nuell Duterte’s writeups when you have family in Davao that can probably offer current, unbiased stuff on Sara, karl.

              • kasambahay says:

                why go after karlG, corporal? you’re heavily into promoting sara, surely you know all there is to know about her, lol!

              • I don’t that’s why I’m wondering how you guys know so much about her, kb!

              • kasambahay says:

                eh, you buying a pig in a sack? c’mon, corporal, you’re the smart one, use your initiative and flex your muscles. write to sara! she is expert judge on her own character, lol

                you, as her most ardent campaigner, hellbent on seeing her become vice president 2022, you’ll probly get priority reply. then you can brag about it.

              • karl said he’s got relatives in Davao, so far we’ve only relied on Nuell Duterte’s assessments, why can’t we hear of karl’s relatives’ opinions, KB? do you have relatives in Davao, becuz their opinion of Inday Sara would also help.

                I don’t think Inday Sara will entertain any of my letters (they’d be more like love letters actually), so if Joe can convince Kris Aquino then maybe. We’ll see. but for now we have to settle with Davaowenyos accounts of Inday Sara, why is she so popular there

                and in Mindanao.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                One of the reasons I only post political stuff at Twitter nowadays is because I have solid Duterte relatives like one sister of my mom based on her FB activity. I was asked by my parents not to comment on their posts so I only post at “secret groups” and twitter about political stuff.

                Well Davao has a Davcao for Leni movement.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                The late husband of my late grand aunt(sister of my maternal grandmother) was a powerful and influential man before. He sheltered Cory pre-people power when she had to go to Davao.
                He was partly responsible for Duterte being OIC and being Mayor for the next three decades. I dont know if it is Stockholm syndrome or what not but there are people who loved Duterte.

              • I think it is simply becuz the Dutertes deliver , karl.

                But if you could do more research for us , and I don’t want you to cause more inter family drama, but just simply ask if they’re open to Leni-Sara 2022. Cuz my gut feeling especially that story you just shared re Cory, karl, is that they’d be anti-Marcos jr. but not necessarily anti-Leni.

              • Oh, and feel free to share my pink and green banner, the one kb loves so much. 😉 as peace offering, karl.

              • JoeAm says:

                Seems to be behind a paywall, so I couldn’t read it. I don’t buy into conspiracy theories that it woukd lead to impeachment of Robredo.

              • Juan Luna says:

                “I don’t that’s why I’m wondering how you guys know so much about her, kb!”
                Corporal, you mean you are not deep with Sara? How can you vouch for her when you don’t know her strength and weakness?

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Strange Joe, since I do not subscribe to South China Morning Post.
                Maybe an archived version will be readable.


              • That’s premised on BBM getting disqualified for tax evasion i think, karl (i can only see the title portion). I think our LENI-SARA 2022 endorsement here is more nuanced.

              • kasambahay says:

                the corporal’s LENI-SARA 2022 endorsement here is not nuance, but more nuisance, lol!

              • Nuisance with nuance or nuanced nuisance?

              • kasambahay says:

                you are wordsmith, Irineo.

              • Latin nubes clouds, French nuer to shade nuance;

                Latin nocere to harm, French nuire hurt nuisance.

                Thus minor distinction vs. minor annoyance. Distinction annoys. OR Annoying distinction.

                related to…

                L’affect (Spinoza’s affectus) is an ability to affect and be affected. It is a prepersonal intensity corresponding to the passage from one experiential state of the body to another and implying an augmentation or diminution in that body’s capacity to act.


                So the question is actually , does it add or does it subtract, then why or how. 😉

  8. NHerrera says:

    Off topic

    Useful graphic information matrix on face masks effectiveness

    • NHerrera says:

      Referring to the link, and taking off from the current blog title: N95 face masks appropriately worn by everyone in closer (shorter-distance) contact can result in better — stave off the worst of covid-19 in the — Philippines until a 75 percent vaccination rate is achieved.

    • NHerrera says:

      DOH announced 17,220 new Covid-19 cases and a 36.95% positivity rate this Thursday, January 6, 2022. The cases are taking off virtually vertically like a rocket. [Note that the peak 7-day average of the cases was about 20k Mid-September of 2021.]

  9. madlanglupa says:

    Dealing with the autocratic dynasties may require understanding of medieval, feudal norms. That collectively they still hold the power to make or break presidents, hence they have to be wined and dined, talk them into accepting your ideas as having the potential to cause profit to them, since most of these petty princes are also businesspeople. And the reliance on these petty princes — stubborn not to accept any measure detrimental to their profits — is a trap that is very difficult to get rid of without resorting to the most drastic of measures.

    I’m intending to find and buy this book (and anyone wishing to dismantle little dictatorships):

    • NHerrera says:

      The one-paragraph description of the book gives a wide period coverage — will be instructive/ interesting to read.

  10. Agree with this Joe.

    The older I get the more of a realist I become. We make lemonade because we have lemons. For the past 30 years, we have been shackled by the debt of past administrations and the people and system they have created. The death of the wartime generation puts us in a weird state. Filipinos are well-traveled compared to the average American and thus we get that our infrastructure and bureaucracy are not even mediocre but below mediocre. Nobody wants to sacrifice because we have been sacrificing for 30 years already. Thus change is slow.

    For inspiration

    • JoeAm says:

      Yes, youth equals idealism, age equals understanding. Both are valuable but you can best build on what is real. Good to have your input on it.

  11. Juan Luna says:

    “… what existing state of affairs does Inday SARA represent.”
    Like Bongbong Marcos Jr., she represents the offspring of a dynast. Children of political dynasty do not start from scratch, they begin from where their ascendants left off. Most times they start as novice in a position held prior by the dynast, or they run for office by sheer name-recall, money and political connections.

    In other words, they represent the elites, the privileged and the dynastic families.

    • Youre arguing DNA, when I’m arguing policy and executive savvy, Juan.

      For example, does Inday Sara espouse EJKs , and time and again Sara has distance herself from that; by not partnering with Bong Go, she’s also distanced herself from her Dad.

      So no there’s no thread that I see that says “status quo”. Only that Sara has her Dad’s savvy of getting things done in the Philippines, ie. Machiavelli’s LOVE or FEAR. i’m saying Inday Sara is more balanced, thus not status quo.

      Granted I researched Sara and nothing much is available, you’d think after 6 years of her father being president Filipino journalists and academics would do some digging as to her mayorship and other accomplishments in Davao, or just dig some good dirt on her, and nothing.

      it’s all Lifestyle type articles, like what she’s wearing, and who’s she’s with etc. etc. She could’ve been the next Philippine president and nothing is known about her. Except for that she polls really good in Davao in Mindanao and the Visayas.

      So all i got to glean into her character is that Sheriff punching incident (which I’ve written about).

      Another character gleaning incident was when VP Leni commented to some COVID related issue in Davao and Sara clapped back with something like I’m in Davao, you’re not don’t talk about things you know nothing about— which is something you expect a strong executive to say.

      And VP Leni backed off, which tells me these women are strong but with a healthy respect for one another.

      My point here is that i’ve researched her and cannot get a bead on her, but yet you guys can say status quo like its cool, with no evidence? ‘splain to me that.

      • Juan Luna says:

        Dynasty is all DNA. When we talk about it, we don’t talk ‘policy and executive savvy’ we talk power and influence, transfer of power and influence, to be clear.

        Sara may not have espoused EJKs but the person who implemented it is the same person who put her where she is. Of course, she can distance herself from it because it’s a non-winner. She did not partner with Bong Go because she knew it would be a clown show. For that I commend her.

        Sara as mayor for Davao City is a good thing. I’ll give that to you. But to be VP? Ummm, that’s hard to swallow, my friend.

        Look, most people know Sara for only three things: she’s mayor; daughter of Digong, and she punched a lowly sheriff in public.

        Don’t tell me you’ll vote for her on that basis?

        • status quo,

          the existing state of affairs, especially regarding social or political issues.


          that’s what we’re talking about , Juan , don’t confuse it with dynasty.

          “Sara as mayor for Davao City is a good thing. I’ll give that to you. But to be VP? Ummm, that’s hard to swallow, my friend.”

          We know that a Philippine mayor (much less the third largest city in the Philippines) does more than a Philippine VP , well depending on what the President gives them. So what’s your point here?

        • Juan Luna says:

          My point simply is, Sara should just stay as mayor in the meantime.

      • kasambahay says:

        sara dont know what she missed, lol! leni has clarity of distance.

        • I think Leni and Sara planned this, i think Kiko knows the plan.

          Leni-Sara 2022 is designed to kill three birds with one stone (VP position), kills once and for all Marcos jr./GMA/Duterte machines.

          Duterte gets off scott free from any future indictments.

          Sara saves her Dad, she saves Leni (cuz she’s really a Leni supporter), and she leaves Presidency open after Leni’s time (which she seems tepid about, the notion of becoming president).

          Thus her calculus works perfectly, kb. It’s genius really.

          • kasambahay says:

            sara runs under gloria arroyo’s party, lakas cmd, bong marcos as well.

            if leni wins the presidency and sara wins the vice presidency, you can be sure that in the shortest of time both bong marcos and gloria arroyo will backdoor malakanyang, sara egging them on and opening the door wide for them to enter.

            then, they’ll move in on leni, and do to leni what was done to pantaleon alvarez, albeit done also to ex chief justice sereno.

            and with leni out of the way, sara gets the top job and is president!

            as president, sara can easily term share with running mate bong marcos; as planned.

            phillippines be damned.

            • “you can be sure that in the shortest of time both bong marcos and gloria arroyo will backdoor malakanyang, sara egging them on and opening the door wide for them to enter.”

              Care to explain how this process will unfold, kb?

              You do know that Malacañang is just the symbolic residence correct? the Presidency is a concept. Unless you’re talking about White House Down, then in that scenario, I think Inday Sara will be more like Channing Tatum, kb. 😉

              • kasambahay says:

                unlike channing tatum who can only protect jamie foxx for the duration of the movie, bong go has been protecting duterte for 6yrs!

    • kb,

      I’m gonna convince you before May 2022, sooner or later you’ll be Leni-Sara 2022, just you wait! 😉

  12. LCPL_X, since you mentioned Filipino Muslims of Chinese descent:

  13. VP Leni’s latest TV ad:

  14. Re lineage I just chanced upon this re VP Leni’s paternal lineage:

    • Public historian Kristoffer Pasion has confirmed that VP Leni’s great-grandfather Julian Gerona, a lawyer and a Colonel of Aguinaldo’s Republic, was not only exiled to Guam but was on the same ship as his college law classmate Mabini.


    I remember sending this in mid 2010s here

    A&R provide a relatively simple and straightforward answer: it’s all about institutions.

    Economic growth in the long-run is mostly determined by productivity growth. Productivity growth depends crucially on the capitalist system to provide the right incentives for individuals and firms. Inventions and ideas are rewarded, creative destruction ensures that uncompetitive firms and unsound business models do not survive for long, and authorities hopefully ensure that welfare destroying monopolies do not get entrenched in the economy. It is this system that has led to unprecedented economic growth for some nations since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution in Great Britain.

    A&R observe that this system crucially depends on inclusive political and inclusive economic institutions (definition given below), and basically any rich country today finds itself in the top left corner in the following diagram.

    we get to

    Long run durable growth can be had according to their research with inclusive political and inclusive economics institutions.

    But getting there is a process.

    That is why we need a bottom up governance revolutions.

    The LGUs have tremendous power and good people focusing on 4 provinces and 10 cities and 20 municipalities are doable.

    Get a 14 Vico Sotto in seat every 3 years. Get 2 Kaka bag-ao in seat every three years.

    This is entirely doable if we had a single decent political party.

    we have
    81 provinces
    146 Cities
    1200 Municipalities

    we would need
    21 elections to cover all provinces
    15 elections to cover all cities
    60 elections to cover all municipalities

    This seems daunting but competence of a Vico is infectious. There would be a natural slow start but as success happens the easier it is to get more people into government.

    also if 120 years is too long we don’t actually need it to be that long since expectations drive actions. If people through media expect better from the government. LGUs drive better educational outcomes for their citizen’s thus there is a self propagating effect.

    • JoeAm says:

      Superb vision of “how to”.

      • I’ve been doing some more digging on the Vice Mayor of Liloan and turns out she is classmate with the former mayor of Cebu city, .

        I would love to have seen the interaction between classmates and school groups using their own network to affect changes at the LGU level, Joe.

        gian, do you know of similar stuff happening in the INC network? cuz then aside from school networks , you also have church networks, and all that are antidote (or just counter balance) to family networks.

        Means of balancing off different groups networks thus more democracy, less reliance on individuals equals gian’s point of better institutions, IMHO. good reading , gian. thanks!

  16. NHerrera says:

    Off topic

    Powerful, meaningful speech by President Biden — mincing no words to get his message across, except mention ex-President Trump by name, because superfluous!

    Here is the full transcript of US President Biden’s speech on the Jan. 6 anniversary of the Capitol’s attack by extremists prodded on by the former President and his allies.

  17. NHerrera says:

    Back to what pesters our mind in TSH — at least that is what I think.

    If we have only these combinations,

    LS = Leni-Sara
    BS = BBM-Sara
    LK = Leni-Kiko

    then it is likely, that the discussants here, most anyway, believe the result come May 2022 will be as follows, ranked with the upper levels the more probable — notwithstanding our preference for varied reasons:

    Probability 1

    Probability 2

    Sorry, but if I were a betting man with skin or my fortune on the line, I can’t see myself voting for this ranking much as I hope that were the case,


    What is my point? My point is — if P1 or P2 is probable with a marginal difference, we should backtrack from that and focus our energies on ensuring that P1 will come out rather than P2.

    Am I talking sense here?

    • Juan Luna says:

      January 7, 2022 at 12:00 pm
      “I don’t that’s why I’m wondering how you guys know so much about her, kb!”

      Corporal, you mean you are not deep with Sara? How can you vouch for her when you don’t know her strength and weakness?


      NH: “My point is — if P1 or P2 is probable with a marginal difference, we should backtrack from that and focus our energies on ensuring that P1 will come out rather than P2.”

      That’s why , Juan. I don’t have to know. I just think P1 is the better choice.

      Thanks, NH. Like edgar used to do you’ve just clarified my own thinking for me.

      • JoeAm says:

        I think I have a better understanding of Sara Carpio-Duterte than Kiko Pangilinan. In her case, the power of a tough woman is disturbing to many, in his case the lack of power of a quiet man is disturbing to many. The equalizing factor is Robredo and she just might get more out of the strong woman than the quiet man. I dunno. Either works as VP, I think. But if the goal is to win the presidency, Leni-Sara plays well.

        • kasambahay says:

          kiko’s family is female heavy, more girls than boys. many filipino families are like that too. I dont find it disturbing for a padre of such familia to be indulgent to his girls and ensure they have the best of education, health and well being. if being tactful and respectful of women and being mindful of their needs is seen as weak, it’s their loss.

          as long as kiko dont swear and make cruel rape jokes, snapped at people around him, beholden to fast emerging super dynasty of dynasties and puppet of them, kiko gets my vote. he is my chosen spare tire.

    • Joe, so TSOH is officially endorsing LENI-SARA 2022 then? me, Joe, NH, IMHO we have a soft yes from gian (eg. “realist”), I’m sure kb will come around since theres a thin like between love & hate, karl his comment below looks like an endorsement too (remember he doesn’t have to vote this tandem, just endorse), Juan’s arguments all fell flat so ideally he of all people should endorse, Ireneo it all depends on how attached he is to Kiko (which I don’t think he is, he’s probably seen a bunch of Kikos on UP Diliman campus with all the chicks pogi points etc.), sonny is anti-Marcos so I’m gonna assume he’ll endorse too. Micha’s gonna be all like but this isn’t democracy in its purest ideal form, guys. well until you have skin in the game, Micha, purest ideal will have to take a backseat. 😉 (I’m just teasing Micha, of course, but Micha is gonna be a hard no, too principled for politics). I think that covers everyone.

      Gentlemen, I think we have a quorum.

      • Juan Luna says:

        Looks like you’re already canvassing support for a Leni-Sara tandem. I think Micha, because he’s a rabid anti-Marcos Jr., is also a yes on that.
        As for me, I don’t do endorsement. That would be, in the words of Micha, “electioneering” lol!

        My friend, I’m a contrarian. I’m friends with everybody and enemy of everyone. I have no political agenda in joining TSOH. All I want to do is do the role of a devil’s advocate and challenge anyone’s view which I disagree with and find out how deep their conviction and belief is or how principled they are in the cause they’re taking a stand with.

        I can share my view of what things are or express my opinion of what could may be but no choosing team for me. I do critique for a hobby.

        Again, the Leni-Sara is a possibility, however, I don’t think anyone here would like to see another version of Digong-Leni tandem. It didn’t work then, will never work ever. You see, oil and water don’t mix. The reason why Sara chose Marcos Jr. was because they agree that they are compatible with each other. The see each other as one, politically, socially and dynasty, lol!

        Same thing with VP Leni. He did not pick Kiko with a blindfold in her eyes. Of course not! In picking up Kiko, she made sure that both of them are aligned in principles and philosophy and that they are a team voters will see as two people being one on the same page.

        If we mess up the two team or interchange it, which typically happens, we’ll lost track of why each team was created in the first place. It’s like Batman and Robin gets to be interchange with the Rey-cards duet. Since you don’t like Rey, you want a Batman-Carding team. Get the picture? Not good.

        • Juan Luna says:

          Sorry, the first paragraph was not included. Here it is:

          “Juan’s arguments all fell flat so ideally he of all people should endorse…”

          • So you are not voting then? All that arguing and no voting, just playing Devil’s Advocate is boring when no follow thru. Joe can’t vote, but he’s putting in the work as to ensure his love ones thrive in the Philippines. I like Sara, thus Leni-Sara. I also like DU30.

            I’ve defended him here as well. Arguing the realist perspective.

            Contrarians are a dime a dozen, Juan. You gotta stake a claim. If you’re Leni-Kiko then great. But you’ve not defended Kiko vis a vis Sara. By definition due to your defense of Kiko really found wanting, you should be open to Leni-Sara.

            And you’re wrong about Micha. just because Micha is anti-Marcos jr. doesn’t mean automatically Leni-Sara 2022. Micha is pro anti-neoliberalism, and has estimated that everyone running for national office there is a neo-lib.

            Thus a hard no, you however having lost all arguments must as a matter of honour be Leni-Sara 2022. That, or seppuku. LENI-SARA 2022 is a lot less painful, Juan.

            • kasambahay says:

              a vote for sara is a vote for bong marcos.

              • Sara is running for VP, kb. And as already explained, you vote for President and VP separately.
                And not since Marcos/Lopez has the Philippines voted a tandem into office.

              • kasambahay says:

                you know so little of philippines politics, lol! unity team nina bong marcos and sara, under gloria arroyo’s party, lakas cmd, is the marriage made in heaven, ask imee! as such, let no corporal put asunder.

                a vote for sara is a vote for boomicron, lol!

              • kasambahay says:

                ahem, bong marcos is apparently sick and showing signs of having omicron. no show siya sa disqualification hearing sa comelec, kahit zoom man lang hindi nagpakita.

                considering na si estelito mendoza ang lawyer ni bbm, and if this is indeed a delaying tactic employed to make guanzon lost temper, become subjective and make mistake, estelito mendoza will gleefully pounce on guanzon, call her out for misruling. then bong marcos’ disqualification is adjourned and voided.

            • Juan Luna says:

              Who said I’m not voting? I’m not joining your caravan because of what I already said. And even if I want to, knowing that you don’t know Sara from Adam, why will I believe you about her?

              My friend, you are pushing for a Leni-Sara team-up and I happen not to believe in it. But you know what, I don’t blame you because it not you that’s messing things up but the constitution for it allows for a split voting of tickets. If it were for me, I want the president and vp on the same ticket to be voted. I don’t want a Batman-Panchito or Dolphy-Robin team. I want to vote either for Batman-Robin or Dolphy-Panchito.

              For allowing split votes, the people are given the option to experiment by mixing up the candidates. Bottom line, our democracy is in perpetual experimental stage because people keeps on mixing candidates who don’t support each other.

              And if one is really for dynasty, I don’t see the reason why one will chose a Leni-Sara tandem. People who are for dynasty will surely go for the poster boy and girl of dynasty: Bongbong-Sara.

              • “because it not you that’s messing things up but the constitution for it allows for a split voting of tickets”

                The US Constitution is somewhat murky in that regard too.


                “In any event, the Twelfth Amendment, though probably unknown to most Americans, has not only a fascinating history but, much more importantly, has the capacity to play a key role should we ever become a multi-party system (as was the case in 1948 and 1968) in which enough candidates get electoral votes to deprive anyone of a majority and thus force election by the House. Perhaps this helps to explain why a popular television program, “Veep,” concluded its fourth season by setting up a tie vote between the title figure, who had succeeded to the presidency and was now running for election, and the other party’s candidate. Among other possibilities explored in the last five minutes as the final show concluded, was that her vice-presidential running mate (who could be chosen by the Senate) might in fact end up as President should the House be unable to decide between the two somewhat unpopular and flawed presidential candidates! (Had the scriptwriters really wished to teach a civics lesson, they could have introduced a distinguished “independent” candidate who received millions of popular votes and, crucially, the electoral vote of at least one state. That would have allowed the House to choose among the top three.) So one of the most esoteric features of the Constitution made its own contribution to popular culture—and deservedly so.”

            • “Bottom line, our democracy is in perpetual experimental stage because people keeps on mixing candidates who don’t support each other.”

              Exactly, and as pointed in the other blog, the last time you got this same ticket tandem was Marcos/Lopez. Filipinos by nature then, love to mix it up. Why Leni-Sara 2022 is more likely to happen.

              karl’s Davao relatives are the best case for this since IMHO they would represent the bulk of the Mindanao and Visayas vote, then the Davao-Zamboanga-Cebu cities vote.

              • kasambahay says:

                it’s about time a tandem win for 2022, leni and kiko tandem preferably.

                mix and match tandem is mix and match problems, history has proven.

        • “And even if I want to, knowing that you don’t know Sara from Adam, why will I believe you about her?”

          NH’s P1 vs. P2. you don’t need to believe me, Juan. You don’t even have to know Inday Sara. P1 vs. P2. once you consider that, the choice becomes clearer. There’s P3 too but the ramifications of which should be obvious.

      • JoeAm says:

        No, TSOH does not engage in politics, but we analyze it. No endorsements. Also, it seems to me the quorum is in your mind. You are entitled to it, of course. Anyhow, the goal here is not to win, but to understand. The robust debate helps that along. I suspect my wife’s vote will be Leni-Kiko. A pro-Leni-Sara vote initiative should be directed at those inclined to vote for Sara but who don’t like Marcos. Tactical.

        • Juan Luna says:

          There you go LCpl. That means one less vote for Leni-Sara. At least, on this blog’s poll. : )

          • “A pro-Leni-Sara vote initiative should be directed at those inclined to vote for Sara but who don’t like Marcos. Tactical.”

            This I agree with completely. We need to target karl’s relatives in Davao.

        • There were also DuRo voters in 2016, in fact a lot I think. Those who already found VP Leni’s grassroots approach a good match for Dutz’ populism even if it didn’t work later. The kind who said even then that “Leni would be even better if she weren’t ‘yellow'”.

          I have seen an old DuRo FB group promoting Leni-Sara. Though Kiko’s situation, I think also thanks to Sharon, is different from that of Mar Roxas in 2016. And yes, some Pinks fear an Arroyo-led impeachment of President Robredo in case the VP is Inday Sara. Somewhat probable as the rivalries within the Duterte political family might well be “moro-moro” to confuse. So I don’t expect LCPL_X’s proposal to go mainstream. There is also Miyako Izabel proposing Leni-Sotto as he is popular, but what would that gain? Though there was a strong Poe-Leni faction too in 2016, and the anti-Marcos groups deciding on her as the one to beat Marcos Jr., that is the complexity of Philippine politics but that isn’t official – or semi-official like Kris Aquino dropping Mar for Binay in 2010..

          • “Somewhat probable as the rivalries within the Duterte political family might well be “moro-moro” to confuse.”

            Exactly, I cannot believe given all the facts we know of the Dutertes that Inday Sara is without loyalty. Thus the assumption has to be that the Father-Daughter play is that.

            “So I don’t expect LCPL_X’s proposal to go mainstream.”

            I don’t know the definition of mainstream, but I do know that NCR is a big chunk, but you have the provinces and the Mindanao/Visayas … Cebu-Davao-Zamboanga cities to contend, so how will LENI-SARA 2022 play there, that’s the question.

          • JoeAm says:

            Lots of combinations for sure. I don’t get Sotto either.

  18. Karl Garcia says:

    I hope dynasties can once and for all improve Muslim Minanao and the poorest places on PH, most fail to do so

    It may not be the name but the person, but my biases still say no to Marcos and Duterte

    • NHerrera says:

      How about Leni Robredo and Sara Duterte-Carpio. OK, by you, Karl, if that is the result of the May 2022 election?

      • Karl Garcia says:

        Ack, i remember congratulating Digong Duterte on my fb posts then after watching his first weeks in office I started to remember the reasons of not liking him.
        Now as to Sara
        I will accept even if it is unacceptable.

        Please do not ask: what if BBM wins…

  19. Juan Luna says:

    The Leni-Kiko tandem, if we go by history of electing president and vice-president, may not be written in the stars. Since the tandem of Cory-Doy, there have been four times that a result have been a split ticket.

    VP contenders Sara, Sotto and Kiko appears to be the three that will fight for the spare tire position. If I’m going to rate them from 1-3 with 1 as the winner, I’ll rate Sotto as 1, Sara second and Kiko third.

    Since we only have two frontrunners on president, Leni-BBM, I’m of the opinion that either of the candidates will have Sotto for VP.

    The LCpl-sponsored Leni-Sara team, I think, is a long shot. Leni Robredo is the nemesis of the Sara-BBM and Digong triumvirate. I think even Sara feels awful to think of the possibility of her becoming Leni’s spare tire. She knows if that happens it’s not going to be easy because she will not get the kind of treatment that she could have gotten under a BBM presidency. Also, it would be the ultimate embarrassment seeing her father laugh his head off for insisting in going her way instead of listening to him.

    I will not be surprised, if there is really a move for a Leni-Sara tandem, she will tell her followers not to vote for her if they’re not going to vote for BBM. If they insist and succeed, they’re practically throwing her in the lion’s den.

    And it’s all LCpl’s fault. 🥸

    • “Leni Robredo is the nemesis of the Sara”

      Where is your proof or what is the basis of this assumption. Because I think its just flat out wrong.

      “And it’s all LCpl’s fault.”

      I will accept all responsibility as I think the only campaign for Sara-Leni 2022 is happening only right here at TSOH.

      But given VP Leni’s character, she will attempt to work with VP Sara, and both will see just like over orange chicken that they both actually share a lot, especially their compassion for the down trodden Filipinos.

      Thus Leni-Sara 2022 will usher a renaissance in the Philippines.

      • Juan Luna says:

        “Where is your proof or what is the basis of this assumption. Because I think its just flat out wrong.”
        It’s not an assumption, it’s a fact. Sara chose to be the Robin for BBM’s Batman. As the dynasty team, they want to clobber the Leni-Kiko team. As for Digong, don’t tell me you know nothing about what happened in the last six years she served as his spare tire.

        As to the orange chicken thing, those are photo ops meant for public consumption to tickle their imagination. You fell for it, my friend. I mean, Sara don’t have any photo ops with BBM partaking any kind of chicken but she ended up with him. You know why? Simple, she hates Leni’s guts for disrespecting her father for the last six years.

        • “You fell for it, my friend.”

          Ireneo calls it moro-moro for a reason. So you falling for the Sara out to get Leni trope is the opposite. Both traps IMHO, as both require you to assume either Sara loves her Dad or Sara really hates her Dad. I think Sara is just loyal, neither love nor hate, though she loves her mom.

          “she hates Leni’s guts for disrespecting her father for the last six years.”

          I think Duterte just saw her as a mild irritant , unless you have actual evidence of disrespect. if Duterte saw her as mild irritant, I’m sure Sara doesn’t really mind Leni (but IMHO they both have mutual respect). Duterte’s minions though were scared of her.

          “those are photo ops meant for public consumption to tickle their imagination.”

          You gotta assume all photos with politicians are press ops, staged. Unless surreptitiously taken.

          But Look at the photos of where BBM ate with Sara, clean private usually; but Sara and Leni eat in a carinderia , assuming it was Sara playing host the fact that Leni didn’t say lets just go to a nice posh hotel restaurant speaks highly of her. And vice versa.

          BBM would’ve been all like hey lets go to a nice private posh place instead, scared of diarrhea and /or getting shot. Lots of fear in BBM. He only smiles in nice and secured places. Definitely not a man of the people.

          VP Leni and Inday Sara are though.

      • NHerrera says:

        To go by the discussion immediately above, the viable combinations [JL] seem to be ​LSa, BSa, LSo, BSo. If criterion, concern for the poor [Joe] or renaissance [Lance] is added in, I cannot see the combination BSa, LSo, BSo better than LSa — I am not talking of winning, mind. The worst combination per Joe/ Lance criterion is of course BSo or is there a debate on that?

    • isk says:

      The Chief Kamao guy hit the Deputy Ombudsman Carandang investigating the joint bank accounts with Daughterte. And yet Sir Lance is pushing for Sara Carpio-Duterte’s candidacy.

      • “What this means: Based on the documents, father and daughter failed to declare from P44.25 million to as much as P85.73 million a year from 2006 to 2014.

        For example, when 2011 ended, Duterte and his daughter still had three joint investments totaling P106.58 million, including a dollar placement, according to the bank records. But Duterte only declared P14.96 million in both cash and investments that year and Sara, P6.6 million—a shortfall of P85.03 million.”


        This is like 2 M US dollars just off the top of my head.

        You look at richer Filipinos especially rich Filipinos with relatives over here or in EU or Canada or Australia , i gotta feeling you ‘ll discover something similar. This just tells me these Dutertes have no access to Panama or Pandora type accounts. probably not savvy enough to hide money, i dunno.

        Ping Lacson is known to have property here hidden under this and that name, etc. etc. Most commercial properties around the LA area is like 1 M – 2 M, now times that by 10 or 20. Then houses in Las Vegas, notice how rich Filipinos ‘ kids always end up in Vegas, real estate is there.

        If anything this joint account stuff affirms my hunch of how close this Father-daughter bond is, thus both have to be in cahoots, no to moro-moro play.

        Look at regular Filipinos with relatives abroad, isk. for example Filipinos that have been here since the 1960s, no family have died and their money have to be distributed and family is only in the Philippines, that money will be laundered, I assure you. dollar account peso account, via this and via there. all sorts of shennanigans some savvy some not so savvy , that’s why I’m not too concerned with the BBM tax thing and this Duterte disclosure money stuff.

        You as a Filipino knowing damn well that your tax dollar will only go into the coffers of politicians and contractors who’ll themselves hide that money abroad will probably be wary of giving too money to corruption too, so if you had the means to hide your money, best to do so probably. Especially in the Philippines. Also,

        Remember we’re seeing the same thing here, isk. especially with Delaware, Biden’s home state, aside from Switzerland, it can be easily argued that Delaware is where all this Panama and Pandora papers really exploded.

        So I tend to see it in context, isk. I could be wrong and all this could be proof that the Dutertes are evil, but if most to all rich Filipinos are doing it (only better), it can’t be that bad thats my take on this, isk.

  20. Micha says:

    A dynasty essentially means, first and foremost, access to and control of economic opportunities and power which will then be leveraged and consolidated to gain political power. This dynamic applies to imperial dynasties such as those in China and Japan as well as in the pledging provincial dynasties we have in the Philippines.

    A dynasty’s singular aim is to maintain wealth and power within the confines of its kin or descendants. It is a selfish Darwinian group dynamics. The fact that there are many competing dynasties in the country entails a consequence of it being an impediment to nation building.

    The Yellow political color, for example, has managed to have been vilified in so short a time because one, it failed to reign in its rivals and, two, it failed in its (false) promise of democratizing wealth and power after the birth of EDSA. The yellows are of course backstopped by both the Aquino and Cojuangco dynasties.

    By nature, all dynasties are inward looking, undemocratic, selfish, and greedy.

    The proposition that it can be a force to build a better Philippines is plain capitulation and a turning upside down of that nature.

  21. Re the Marcos loyalist argument that “Yellows” messed up the Philippines since 1986, this meme says it all: (as one can see a nice Constitution alone does not change people’s culture and political habits it does take much more, probably even the Filipino Left would end up ruling something that looks like a bad mix of Venezuela and Nokor if they ever got to rule, which is unlikely, but people’s habits die hard which is why I still believe in evolving but with a goal)

    • Micha says:

      Where is Ramos in that equation? It was El Tabako who contributed mucho in the clusterfuck of the yellow brand.

      • Please define yellow. If you say LP then yellow is only PNoy as Cory was PDP-Laban, Duterte also. The diagram defines yellow as the Aquinos. One could say Ramos as Cory’s designated successor was also “yellow”. Others say all post-1986 Presidents except Erap were neoliberal and therefore “yellow”. Duterte is also neoliberal, the rice tarrification act and allowing more foreign ownership for instance. At some point it becomes absurd.

        Though Ramos did sign up for WTO and massive privatization, to be precise about what neoliberal means in that context. AND he did let the Marcoses including the wax statue come back. Oh he also had a huge role in Martial Law, let’s blame Yellow for that also.

        • Micha says:

          Have you already forgotten that it was Ramos who started the insurrection against his cousin Macoy?

          El Tabako was also supposed to be the competent professional soldier who will right things up after the mess of the incompetent housewife. His shift rightward pacifying Honasan, preserving the socio-economic status quo of, yes, dynastic rule and wholesale embrace of IMF/World Bank dictated neoliberal policies instead made the larger populace wary and disillusioned of the Yellow/EDSA/People Power narrative. The PMC failed in the transition to a modern more inclusive democracy.

          By the end of his term, the country was ready for the alternative offering of a more populist/nationalist package drawn up by Estrada.

          That of course was unacceptable to the establishment so they brought in another professional – an economist with a mole and a lying tongue.

          • So you define Yellow as EDSA and People Power. It probably had failed by EDSA Dos.

            Well, even Manolo Quezon sees the split between old middle class and new middle class as manifested in the EDSA Dos/Tres split and Dutertismo later.

            One could say that a part of the old EDSA Uno crowd still went all for Arroyo and another part was totally disillusioned by her dictatorial ways that showed after a while.

            The vote for PNoy was IMO partly due to the death of Cory and partly due to nostalgia for the aspirations of EDSA Uno which anyhow were different things to different people.

            It’s also MLQ3 who saw Duterte as the start of a new era after 1986-2016, even if he clearly doesn’t like it he is realistic. Though “yellow failed, back to Marcos” is stupid.

            • Micha says:

              Which brings us right back to the stupidity of the proposition that dynasties can build a better Philippines.

              • Well, what can build a better Philippines? I guess none of us really has a good answer. Marcos who was outside of the old national elites said he’d go against local warlords, only to make himself National Warlord, and against oligarchs, but created cronies.

                Newcomers to the system like Cynthia Villar are often more vicious than any old elite ever was. Well, I guess Joe hopes for the system to create more Vico Sottos and even Abby and Nancy Binays, but I am not so sure how that can be encouraged.

              • JoeAm says:

                It takes a capable President to recognize and raise the good and punish or get rid of the bad. The dynasty argument is not so much pro-dynasties as it is anti-wasting time by trying to configure a society in a way that that goes against the grain of what the Philippines is and has always been.

              • Micha says:

                As I was saying, just because building a more progressive inclusive society requires hard work and probably much longer time doesn’t mean democrats in our midst will just have to cave in, capitulate to dynastic rule. That would be like taking not two but ten steps backward.

              • “It takes a capable President to recognize and raise the good and punish or get rid of the bad. “

                I agree, can they add or do they simply subtract? improve or worsen. Provide nuance or just nuisance. 😉 Multiply or divide.

              • JoeAm says:

                A capable President will raise the Philippines in every way.

        • “it is anti-wasting time by trying to configure a society that goes against the grain of what the Philippines is and has always been.”

          This is what the neo-cons and neo-libs did in the Muslim world after 9/11 , the world’s worst off IMHO. So do something else please.

    • Is there a video available, Ireneo?

      • Don’t think so or Ninotchka would have posted it, but here is a summary from her about what was talked about:

        (Don’t know who the crowd was, probably people from the NYC Filipino community like Ninotchka, I can imagine there will be more such meetings with global Filipino groups)

        • Nice, one topic was Universal Health Care and UHC relates perfectly with UBI, so hopefully soon VP Leni will talk MMT, CBDC & UBI.

          Looks like OFW specific talk. I think most OFW will be anti-Marcos.

          • Is this Ninotchka known for simplifying things for the masses?

            • Ninotchka is a Marcos era former detainee, NYC exile (Queens) and author of this book:


              The review compares to Allende’s House of Spirits though I once told her that her style had echoes of Marquez’ magical realism. She also coined crab mentality as a term and called the Philippines “Land of Constant Beginnings”.

              This is her anthology of Short Stories:


              Don’t know about her direct masa influence I guess it might not be that strong but she is influential among both Leftists and Liberals in the Philippines. She is Leftist but NOT the kind that will not touch yellow with a ten-foot pole. Sees even Trillanes as heroic.

              Her contacts with migrant organizations are quite good though. Probably that is what got her on the call. She has gained a lot of followers since she started a bit of a crusade against Duterte some years ago and yes Nuelle Duterte is among her friends.

              • Ah, thanks.

                ” and yes Nuelle Duterte is among her friends.”

                Wait, from before… or just recently?

              • Recently meaning a few years ago.. both were in NYC but seems their worlds never intersected until both got busy against Digong.

                Filipino intellectuals and professionals don’t usually mix a lot at home and abroad but one possible unintended effect of the Duterte regime was to make their worlds intersect a bit more than they used to – though the world of OFWs is still far from both and though there are far more pro-Leni OFWs today (the jeers one got in OFW FB groups for being pro-Aquino or pro-Roxas one doesn’t get for being pro-Leni as there are many) there are also many pro-Marcos Jr. groups though it seems Sara is the one pulling them..

              • Juan Luna says:

                I used to see her (Ninotchka) in the office of Ben Lim during the time when I was still working in gov’t. I’m not sure if she’s a consultant there or a writer under contract or just a friend of Dr. Lim. I also remember Luis Teodoro, if I’m not mistaken, being on the same building. I think he is also one of her contemporaries and once upon a time related to each other.

              • The name Luis Teodoro is familiar to me, he sometimes writes articles.

                Ben Lim isn’t.

              • I did read I think in the comments on youtube or maybe reddit, that that recent writer who was pro-DU30 that just died recently, had a stipend of like P50,000 pesos a month for being a national artist.

                How many national artists are there. and is that the exact amount and for perpetuity (or til death)? Is Ms. Rosca one?

              • Nope, she isn’t. Full list below. Jovita Fuentes was our neighbor in UP, her coloratura soprano voice a memory of my childhood, but also typhoon Yoleng in late 1970 which blew her roof off. Jose Maceda was a music professor and his French-Canadian wife was my piano teacher. Rolando Tinio is a name I often heard and Sonny once watched his Filipino translation of Hamlet, I recall. Lino Brocka was a great director. So was Ishmael Bernal. Nick Joaquin I am sure you have heard of..


              • Juan Luna, did you use to go by the name Primer here?

              • Juan Luna says:

                Nope. I’m Juan Luna then and now.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                @Lcx , JL reminds me more of jameboy than primer.

              • Jameboy was less diplomatic i think, it was the “when I was in gov’t work” that triggered it i guess. But yeah, Primer was a lot more shadier.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Yes jameboy is slightly less diplomatic especially when he sees an old foe like Johnny Lin.(also commented here before)

          • Ah, here it is…


            The rank and title of National Artist, as proclaimed by the President of the Philippines;

            The insignia of a National Artist and a citation;

            A lifetime emolument and material and physical benefits comparable in value to those received by the highest officers of the land such as:

            a cash award of one hundred thousand pesos (₱100,000.00) net of taxes, for living awardees;

            a cash award of seventy-five thousand pesos (₱75,000.00) net of taxes, for posthumous awardees, payable to legal heir/s;

            a monthly life pension, medical and hospitalization benefits;

            life insurance coverage for Awardees who are still insurable;

            a state funeral and burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani;

            a place of honor, in line with protocolar precedence, at national state functions, and recognition at cultural events.


            Joe, can you put in a good word for me and maybe get me nominated for this Award for my work with the SARA-LENI 2022 banner, as a conceptual art piece but also accompanied by campaigning on here both in blog and commentary, which can be submitted as literature. if it requires a Filipino to nominate then I would wish for kb to do it on behalf of TSOH. thanks.

            But after May 2022.

    • This is Larry Alcala’s work. Going thru the list of national artists. To see if i’m a contender for my LENI-SARA 2022 work.

      Perusing thru available online works of these national artists. This comic produced the most reminiscence. I used to eat bbq in a place similar. I’ll have to read some Nick Joaquin books.

      I really liked this guy’s “Live Show”, what do you think of him as director, Ireneo?

  22. ireneo,

    Another idea i had that VP Leni can possibly

    increase vis a vis that OFW talk with Ms. Rosca is to get OFWs to moonlight as you tubers like Natasha above. depending on how good and informative the channel, it looks like from the numbers she’s indicating, for once a week videos, it’d be around P15,000 to P30,000 pesos. maybe more.

    her secret recipe seems to be all the introspective talk within the videos, where she talks about her future, politics, comparing cultures, mental health, etc. etc. instead of say the Spaghetti dance, etc. so if Filipinos in the Philippines or abroad, can replicate something that the rest

    of the world would want to watch, that would be great— again, I don’t think the world wants to see any more Spaghetti dance.

    So maybe workshops in how to go viral and make actual money abroad or in the Philippines. Watch how simple Natasha’s videos are. but its very relatable. Why aren’t there a lot of Filipinos taking advantage of this?

  23. NHerrera says:

    Off topic


    I tweeted this just now:

    The daily PH cases shown (with horizontal lines at 10k, 20k, 30k) place yesterday’s case number at 26k — the recent rise looks like a flagpole. I believe 100k cases before the end of January is very probable.

    The heightened restrictions being imposed may decelerate the rise experienced the last few days but daily cases in the neighborhood of 100k are still probable before the end of January.

    Stay safe.

    • Karl Garcia says:

      Many are hoping that like South Africa and UK, the cases will decrease after a month.

      Not much reported or highlighteed are the number of immonocompromised and HIV patients in South Africa.
      That spells long Covid and more variants
      The PH may not have as many HIV patients as Thailand or other neighbors, but the rise of HiV cases is concerning.

    • Karl Garcia says:


      If we look at UKs past projections , they projected the cases doubled every three days.

      We might have 800 k cases by Feb before cases go down.

      • NHerrera says:

        Well, Karl, if you are looking for a bit of elementary math, consider these PH case numbers:

        Jan 5 — 10,727
        Jan 6 — 17,148
        Jan 7 — 21,819
        Jan 8 — 26,458

        The average exponential increase from Jan 5 to Jan 8 is 0.351 = (26,458/10,727)^(1/3) – 1.

        But in view of the growing restrictions, let us downgrade that to a low 0.100 . Using this and starting from the Jan 8 number of 26,458, we have in 20 days or on Jan 28,

        177,996 = 26,458*1.100^20

        If we use instead, a rate of 0.150 , still lower than 0.351, we have on Jan 28,

        433,025 = 26,458*1.150^20

        But these are just numbers game, let me not be too scary and just say 100k by end of January.

        And we are talking of PH, with medical facilities not like, say, Thailand.

        • Karl Garcia says:

          Thanks again Maestro!

          • NHerrera says:

            The doubling days of 2.2 quoted by Health UnderSec Vergeire translate to a daily exponential rate of

            0.370 = 2^(1/2.2) – 1

            which is even higher than the 0.351 I calculated above from the daily Jan 5 to Jan 8 cases. I don’t even want to calculate the number that such a rate implies in 20 days.

            The curious thing is this. This number of 2.2 days doubling time has been published much earlier in international health news, and yet the DOH had been making very benign statements earlier and not using that number to do some projecting as I did. Not to scare, but to prepare the government machinery. I believe the response of the Administration of a President Robredo would have done better.

            • NHerrera says:

              And certainly not from the Presidency of one who believes the biological virus can be transmitted through Zoom. 🤣

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Di nya kaya alone kailangan nasa likod nya ang lawyer nya.
                What would be the next excuse?

              • kasambahay says:

                aba, hyperemic kuno, may swollen throat at may fever pa, sa takot siguro makaharap sina guanzon, kaya nagkaruon ng fight or flight reaction ang katawan that went inward, sa sobrang nerbyos yata, lol!

                maybe, man with good muscle coordination has not heard of anti-inflam meds easily bought over the counter to bring down swelling in the body.

                well, sa radio interview niya, dapat nagbago ang boses kung talagang may hyperemia ang throat, dahil medyo masakit magsalita, swallowing would be painful too, and the cervical nodes sa neck may have been enlarged too.

                kung ako si man with good muscle coordination, I would have make use of the opportunity to pa-awa to the whole nation and zoomed comelec kaagad, whereby gaining nationwide sympathy. lalo na kung makita ng taumbayan ang itsura, namamaga ang throat, ang mukha medyo affected at namamaga rin, namula, mula.

                aba, may missed opportunity, sayang na sayang!

              • Karl Garcia says:

                He is accusing criitics and opponents of spreading fake news.

            • Karl Garcia says:

              Yes leni will handle this better

        • Karl Garcia says:

          Today it is 28 k but 14 labs did not submit.

          • NHerrera says:

            It is a Sunday, besides, and usually, the cases on weekends are reported low — as if cases take holidays. [ 🙂 ]

            The following weekdays will show if the cases have abated, because of stricter measures and the populace are more worried so they take more precautions because of supply problems of such usually available med such as paracetamol, among others.

            • Karl Garcia says:


            • kasambahay says:

              we were supposed to be going for herd immunity where everyone is infected, there is no one left to infect and the virus died down. or if we are all vaccinated, we’ll have some semblance of immunity and survive pandemic.

              and because like flood dagsa kaagad ang massive surge of infection ng pandemic, our hospitals and health staff are hard pressed to cope, people are getting sick in droves and the recovery of our economy threatened again.

              as to paracetamol and related meds, methink there is enough supply, kaso a number of courier and delivery people are either in quarantine, sick and unable to work; same sa pharmacy staff, many are also in quarantine and cannot stack shelves. and if the kakulangan is mayhap artificial, drugs are hoarded only to be made available to public later on, at higher prices. reminiscent of pharmally and the ppes.

  24. Micha says:


    (What Aristotle Can Teach Us About Building A Better Society)

    “…our health as individuals is intimately connected to the health of our communities, the health of wider society and, ultimately, the health of the planet. These are connections that older traditions and societies understand very well, but we in the west have lost sight of in recent times.”

    “There is a long (but often neglected) tradition of interest in salutogenesis, the origins of health, which is concerned with understanding the causes of health as opposed to pathogenesis, the origins of disease. This is in some ways the precursor to what is today called “social prescribing,” an approach which sees clinicians prescribe gardening, swimming, singing and other activities instead of pharmaceuticals, making use of the health-creating benefits of each. This is not about prevention of disease but the creation of health—the causes of health not the causes of disease. It takes the positive, not the negative approach to creating the conditions for people to be healthy.”

    “Several national and global Marmot Reviews have been undertaken to understand the ways in which social, political, economic and environmental forces shape our health and life chances for good or ill. This work has helped bring inequalities to the centre of policy and the pandemic has reinforced and deepened our understanding in this area. Government policies, whether about levelling up or economic development, need to be influenced by the concept of human flourishing. It combines health and wellbeing, social stability and, of course, prosperity, all of which need to be in balance. It should be a central part of how we think about re-designing our society for the future.”

    • NHerrera says:

      Makes a lot of sense to me.

      For example, the people in the US who overspend on energy and a lot of other things do not live healthy lives which cost much less to maintain — thus, unhealthy lives > unhealthy minds > becoming fertile grounds for the likes of Trump and his fanatics to thrive.

      Same thing for some sectors of the PH.

      • There’s a lot of fat people over here , NH. i’ve always liked this:

        • awhile back i was in LA Union station to catch the Metro, and saw a young black woman with baby (less than a year old i’m sure), took out a baby bottle filled it with Coca Cola, and had the baby drink Coke. I’m pretty sure that was child abuse, but I had more important things to worry about.

        • NHerrera says:

          Now that you said it [ a lot of fat people over here ], I noticed that those who stormed the Capitol on Jan 6, 2021, practically no one has ideal Body Mass Index or thin ones. Plenty of coke-drinking, hamburger-eating people multiple times a week in that bunch, I would guess.

          • isk says:

            Here we go again, darn…those American protesters aka insurrectionists. Been trying to understand the cause of these rioters and it came to this Kevin Drew’s article

            Not social media, not CNN, not MSNBC and other news network organization but solely Fox News.

            • NHerrera says:

              Interesting read. Thanks, isk.

              • isk says:

                You’re welcome. That article about Fox News seems not in sync with the live broadcast of resident Fox Hosts.

              • Fox News is pretty tame these days compared to others that have popped up, isk.


                After the election in 2020,
                since it was FOX that called it I believe for AZ first, and then Georgia, Trumpists have turned their backs on FOX en mass, so I don’t think Fox News had anything to do with Jan. 6, isk. But for sure, FOX News started it all per that article, they just got outpaced by crazier people, mostly on social media, but also the fact that they can meet-up now, the Capitol riot was one big meet-up.

                My point only is that FOX if you’re a Trumpist is gonna be a non-starter. FOX is now seen by them as MSM.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Even my 15 year old knows about this fox news stuff.

              • karl,

                If your son watches FOX News, ask him who was the first to declare Joe Biden winner; and whether or not FOX News played any part directly during Jan. 6.

              • JoeAm says:

                This article recites Hannity’s possible direct engagement.

              • From what i understand of this Hannity communication to Trump is that

                he was urging Trump to do something, eg. stop the riot. or say something to dissuade further violence.

                Personally, having paid attention to FOX News during this time, FOX News seemed as an organization to have dumped Trump already after election. they were getting ready for the Biden administration and to ramp up sleep Joe, old Joe, etc. politics as usual stuff, not necessarily dependent on Trump.

                there was announcement of a Trump rally, and i would venture that most who showed up really thought they were simply gonna be outside the Capitol to protest, there was no calls for actual entering on FOX news, but social media and group texts,

                i’d say 10 to 20 percent there were given the idea (or instructions) that there would be limited push back from Capitol police (who the person responsible for not using National Guards, or extra DC police i’m still really curious of, Joe.)

                So a few got in, and then it just spiralled and snow balled from there. my point, that wasn’t from FOX News. they used other means to push that idea that they could actually enter the Capitol. My point here is if you’re gonna get Trump into the WH in 2024,

                FOX News is not gonna figure much in that calculation. because they’ve now gone into calling FOX news fake news.

              • isk says:

                @ Sir Lance
                This Senate hearing was conducted today

              • JoeAm says:

                I’m not sure I get the point. I’m reminded of chemrock’s descent into conspiracy theories as fact. Certainly it is far removed from dynasties in the Philippines.

              • But after Jan. 6 and the fact that Trumpist have resorted to calling FOX, fake news. FOX News has gotten back to being pro-Trump again. but from my understanding, Trumpists still have not returned. They see FOX News as ‘try-door’, as the girls at Mango Ave. would say.

              • JoeAm says:

                Move on from Mango Avenue, corporal.

              • isk,

                This is the false flag theory.

                Which I don’t buy. Certainly FBI agents and informants have gotten in trouble in the past, during their terror investigations in which responding to some quota they ended up committing entrapment where they were in effect causing encouraging their suspects to do more where they don’t have had.

                This is a who’s Mr. Epps situation. And Googling him, he’s just a regular dude. pro-Trump. not as violent. Thus released from wanted list.

                Sen. Ted Cruz has nothing here, reminds me of the Sen. Paul/Fauci spat also. they both have a cool hand (eg. Cool Hand Luke). I do think Cruz has a point re comparatively with other such riots that year, for example the Capitol cop that shot the woman attempting to enter the door, that’s assassination pure & simple, any other police force he’d be in trouble even during a riot; but in the Capitol, he’s a hero. go figure.

                Back to the point.

                Trump and folks did encourage the riots, I have no doubt of this; i’m just pushing against the idea that FOX News is still big, they are not , not no more.

              • JoeAm says:

                Use of force in defense of legislators, even if deadly, is not assassination, a premeditated act.

              • * where they woundn’t have had.

              • isk says:

                Alleged conspiracy theory involving FBI amazes me.

              • “Use of force in defense of legislators, even if deadly, is not assassination, a premeditated act.”

                Deadly force has to be immediate, Joe. If you think a particular act (like climbing thru the door) is going to cause death and/or serious bodily harm to congressmen/women then , that reasoning has to be backed by a statement, furthering act, possession of weapon or obj that can be used as one, etc. etc. from the suspect (mere climbing is not enough). None of that was present, yet the Capitol police, pointed his gun point blank to the head of the woman, and shot.

                W/out immediacy, that’s assassination. even in a riot situation , Joe.

                Think about it, had that Capitol police been a real hero and not just a political one, a lot more Capitol police would’ve opened fire at everyone all rioters going thru doors, windows and hallways, a real blood bath; but they didn’t becuase they knew they had no Deadly Force situation, Joe. They had other force options which they used, though I think the Capitol police who were rammed, who were bear sprayed, etc. could’ve used deadly force (or their partner officers). And been justified.

                But this particular one, wherein the woman was just climbing in no other information available to the officer, the officer did not have Deadly Force.

              • JoeAm says:

                We have your view and that of justice authorities. I was not in the officer’s shoes facing a mob of people coming through the doors of the building I was charged to protect and so would not appoint myself social media judge empowered to declare the officer guilty of a heinous crime. But I understand that many others do feel so inclined.

              • JoeAm says:

                Here’s an interview with the officer that elaborates on what he was experiencing. It gives context.

              • Use of Force for police is like ROE for military , Joe. sure its fungible, jury gets a say; politicians get a say too; and the public , but at the end of the day there is policy. Written down.

                Thus we can talk, monday morning qb policy, Joe.

              • JoeAm says:

                I’ve developed a view of social media as a place of rampant uninformed, potentially damaging opinions, demonstrated at its worst by chemrock’s wild-eyed ravings, and I seek to avoid those influences myself. Quarterbacks will be quarterbacks, even if they are holding an old shoe rather than football (credit to Louis Jenkins on throwing a football).

              • If you notice none of those 3 reasons to use Deadly Force quite applies to this particular situation, the closest is the 2nd— but you’d have to see the civilians you are purporting to be defending within premises, and not some theoretical space (somewhere in the building). if they are not in the hallway then no imminent threat.

                The two other means a cop can shoot is to shoot a mamed animal, eg. traffic accident or barn fire, and an animal is seriously injured and thrashing and stuff that would cause humans harm, or just simply to alleviate suffering (animal euthanasia) you can shoot said animal dead.

                Another instance a cop can open fire is during a riot situation and in attempt to quell the crowd, you can shoot a warning shot into a safe space where no penetration and/or ricochet can occur, in de-escalating the situation, that would’ve been warranted, eg. I fired a warning shot.

                But w/out imminent threat,

                mind you this is the only Capitol police to shoot his weapon and kill someone, without imminent threat, meaning the civilians were really close by thus imminent, not just in the building in like just in general. Then its not justified.

                remember in Seattle and Minneapolis police stations were taken over by rioters, no cops shot those rioters, cops and civilians escaped. the buildings were surrendered.

      • Karl Garcia says:

        Critics of Conditional Cash transfers says thar the mannof the house just spends it for vices, etc.
        What more if the cash transfer is unconditional like UBI?
        Plus what Joe pointed out that once people lead better lives there would no longer be equality(paraphrased)

        But again my beef is with the less vaccines Africa is getting compared to the rest of the world and not just the First world.

        • kasambahay says:

          african leaders should be aggressively pursuing vaccines for their own people, rather than dabbing in coups, wars, genocide, bombing neighboring countries, playing politics and creating exodus of refugees both political and economics that clog european countries.

          as for critics of our conditional cash transfers, they should stop accusing the hapless man of the house of spending money on vices. critics should instead demand dswd, the dept responsible for handing cash transfers, to do research and do extensive study on how the money is spent. the resulting data should be able to support the vice theory, or debunk it.

          I have an ignorant’s definition of vice. for me, eating is vice! praying many times a day is vice, hoarding money is vice, smoking is vice, going to school is vice, watching teleseryes is vice, etc.

          my vice is alcohol as well as going to work religiously.

      • Micha says:


        To tie this concept in with the blog topic, dynasties are, as previously stated, inward looking. They have very little regard, if at all, with the bigger community, society or, for that matter, the health of our planet. They have very little concern for the well being of other people outside of their fiefdom. Things like poverty and pollution does not bother them that much except when it directly threatens their own.

        Thus dynasties are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.

        • kasambahay says:

          they have fantastic pr machineries these dynasties, all those promotions and the supposed charities they sponsored are hawked and documented to death, exaggerated too. all those grateful and waving people happy to have been helped out of human bondage; famous celebs smiling and singing dynastic praises, such pictures of contentment and happiness, of well being and charisma. all must be well with these dynasties. on the surface.

          what an uphill battle for little people like me, and we trudge still.

        • JoeAm says:

          The same can be said for political parties.

        • “Thus dynasties are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.”

          That goes for people in general, Micha. thus rhetoric. For example, plug in various groups…


          Thus Trumpists are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.

          Thus neolibs are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.

          Thus the poor are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.

          Thus Marcos/Dutertes are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.

          but plug in groups/people you’re biased positively towards…

          Thus Robredos are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.

          Thus MMT’ers are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.

          Thus TSOH members are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.

          Thus Multinational corporations are, by nature and contrary to the premise of this blog article, incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country.


          thus, all rhetoric, Micha.

          My point, fact is its all about Us vs. Them, we all think our group are better than the other group. And since the US capitol riot was mentioned above, look we’ve had a long history of people attacking gov’t buildings, and riots, period. All premised by Us vs. Them. otherwise called democracy.

          The dynastic families are probably thinking, we can better run this country because C-D-E folks are dumb weren’t fed well. Well, the only answer to that is for C-D-E folks to out maneuver the A-B folks, not to buy Corgis and be A-B folks themselves.

          Don’t waste your time with empty rhetoric, show it thru violence against gov’t buildings and/or people. Like the good ole’ USofA. Show the A-B folks that you mean business. That if they are incapable of building a better (or healthy) community and country, the C-D-E folks will give them the boot.

          Over here, there’s a good very good chance Trump will return in 2024, thanks to our own C-D-E folks over here, but unlike yours ours are well fed too well fed, to quote NH , “Plenty of coke-drinking, hamburger-eating people multiple times a week in that bunch,”

          maybe… but why they are feared because they epitomizes this… that’s how you dismantle dynasties,

          until then, Joe’s correct get the dynasties to do good.

          • Karl Garcia says:

            the art of effective or persuasive speaking or writing, especially the use of figures of speech and other compositional techniques.
            “he is using a common figure of rhetoric, hyperbole”
            oratory · eloquence · power of speech · command of language · expression · way with words · delivery · diction
            language designed to have a persuasive or impressive effect on its audience, but often regarded as lacking in sincerity or meaningful content.
            “all we have from the Opposition is empty rhetoric”
            bombast · loftiness · turgidity · grandiloquence · magniloquence · ornateness · portentousness · pomposity · boastfulness · boasting · bragging · [more]


            I choose rhetoric over violence

            • That’s my point karl. That’s why dynasties are hard to beat over there. Precisely because of that. So Joe’s point makes sense, if you can’t get rid of dynasties (ie. rhetoric over violence) then work with them.

              Work thru them.

              Micha doesn’t have a solution that takes this reality in account.

              • Juan Luna says:

                Okay, since we’re at it, can you tell us how do you envision the Leni-Sara team might do, if ever, about the issue of dynasty. You think they’re for it or not?

                I asked that because the article insinuated that there might be something good in a dynasty that would change the country’s future for the better.

              • JoeAm says:

                The argument is that dynasties are deeply a part of Philippine society and progress can be made by recognizing that and using the power of dynasties to implement progressive steps. To say dynasties are bad is to say the Philippines is bad and has been for 120 years. But it doesn’t say how to move forward.

              • Juan Luna says:

                The main intent of my question is to invite discussion on the issue of dynasty with regard to those running for president and vp. I specifically cited the Leni-Sara tandem of which LCpl is the main proponent. VP Leni already made known her stance about it and emphasized that she’s more on the equal opportunity side of the issue. With regard to Sara, a clear dynasty product, I’m not aware of her position on the issue.

                I also said early on that I’m not for dynasty for obvious reason that all equates to abuse of power. And I also think that whoever wins will make no difference on the status quo of dynasty in the country.

                If progress is possible under a dynasty rule, how come dynasties in history have ceased to exist today? We have a lot of permutations of dynasty in the country and not one have been cited as one kind of dynasty that we should adopt in order to progress.

                Is the Philippines bad because local dynasties abounds in the archipelago? A lot of people will say it is because it is a system where fair play is monopolized by a particular family or group.
                I guess, before we push, promote or propose to adopt a dynastic system, maybe we should first produce proof that it is a system where we’re going to have a level playing field for everybody. As it is, I am not aware of any ‘models’ representing a city, province or region that will serve as a template showing good example of dynasty.

              • JoeAm says:

                Makati City, a Binay dynasty, is one of the most successful cities in the nation. LGUs performing well are Quezon City, Pasig City, and Iloilo City. Whether they are dynastic or not is irrelevant to their commitment to growing jobs and wealth. That perhaps is the key point here. Dynasties can help an action-oriented President get to the point that progress is the best measure of success. Who is in charge is less relevant and soon dynasties are no longer driving the nation. But fact certain, dynasties control local elections today and your ‘no model’ model will not get them out of the way.

              • Juan Luna says:

                Makati is the financial center of the country and it was where major businesses (multinational and local corps.) are concentrated. It was not like the city was destitute before and made wealthy by political dynasty. It is a highly urbanized city and is the country’s richest city.
                But in spite of that there is a dark side to the city: the poor.

                Except the corrupt ones, anyone can run Makati because it’s a city that has all the amenities to operate in a bankable way. If the dynasty is really good, the Binays have been in office since 1986, how come there is still slum areas in the city? With all those riches, how come they cannot even elevate the condition of the poor, if not eradicate it completely?

                If VP Leni wins, I don’t think she will need the help of dynasties which she detest.

                Dynasties will help itself first before it helps anyone, that’s the nature of beast. The scenario you might be thinking could be good at the start but in the long run those in power will want more power to the exclusion of anyone not within the sphere of the dynasty. Exclusive control and possession of power by select few is never a good thing.

                In fact, dynasty did not help Jejomar Binay when he ran for president in 2016.

              • JoeAm says:

                Okay. Well, I wrote the article more for VP Robredo than you, so we’ll have to wait and see what happens. If she puts an anti-dynasty bill into the hopper, you are right. If she does not, but puts LGU performance standards into the hopper, we’ll guess that she read the blog and understood what I was saying. Don’t waste time fighting the families. Get them to help you.

              • Juan, from the link i’ve shared early on way above the thread on the Frascos (Christine is Inday Sara’s spokesperson and best friend)…

                “Goal-driven and full of ideals, the couple has helped develop Liloan into what it is today. The municipality is one of the most progressive in Cebu, even establishing the Liloan Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender (LGBT) Federation during Christina’s term, the first in the country spearheaded by a local government unit. Liloan prides itself in having the first LGU-established gender-neutral public restroom in the country.

                “Our dream is to become a city,” Christina divulges. She envisions Liloan as an ideal place to live, study, work and invest. “In preparation for that, we are focusing on improving public infrastructure, opening up and improving road networks, and ensuring strict compliance with our Zoning Ordinance and Comprehensive Land Use Plans to ensure that development is regulated, deliberate and sustainable.”

                This year, Liloan is launching tour packages that will feature its cottage industries and various tourist sites. Health services are being professionalized, scholarship programs expanded, and more investments channeled into its law enforcement and disaster response programs.

                “We are also enhancing our community governance programs focused on protecting the environment, providing economic opportunities through livelihood, and reaching out to all sectors and stakeholders by incentivizing participation and compliance with our laws and regulations,” Christina adds.

                Duke shares that every now and then, he offers input to his wife. “I advice Christina on various matters, especially regarding the projects started during my term, such as our scholarship program and purok system,” he says. “Being the party chairman of our local political party, I am also in continued contact with our local leaders.”


                Duke ‘s family hails from Leyte i read somewhere, but having established roots in Liloan (so kinda like the Duterte family from Cebu to Davao, then he married Christine. both are dynasties. He was mayor first, then Christine. So a political power couple.

                I don’t see any write ups on Inday Sara, which youd think there’d be a bunch by this time. So either she’s really private or press over there just really suck (or both). even the article i’ve shared is a Lifestyle type article— there’s no policy or press articles that really have meat when in comes to

                Philippines, Juan. so hard to divine either way. But my point abou t the Frascos is they are making strides in Liloan, where before (unlike Makati) it was just some backwater. and Inday Sara is closed with them, so birds of a feather type deal.

          • Micha says:


            We’re dealing with specifics here corporal – the specifics of form of governance, viz. government by, for, and of dynasties versus modern, merit-based democracy so your oscillations and inanities do not wash.

            Try again.

            • “modern, merit-based democracy”

              It is very specific, Micha.

              Where is this modern, merit-based democracy found?

              Answer, USofA

              Where did it come from?

              UK, Rome, Greece (Ancient)/ Israel too.

              Who is ensuring its continued albeit arbitrary (meaning could all crumble tomorrow) existence?

              Answer, USofA

              See? like banking and finance, the USofA is purveyor, controller and protector of said system. Western Europe only enjoys “modern, merit-based democracy” because 60,000 or so US troops are over there (more during Cold War), with the promise of more if shit hits fan.

              hmmmmmmmmmmmm… makes you think huh?

              So those storming the Capitol, well they kinda matter a big deal; so too those “dynasties” you guys have, since 9/11 we (meaning US military ) took down systems of gov’ts, guess what took its place, complete chaos!

              Again, Joe’s right, work with what you have.

              the Philippines has democracy in name but not in practice, and from all indications, democracy in practice is nowhere to be found, because most people are happy with their dynasties, they have light skin, nose bridge and where nice clothes, and as always in the Lifestyle section of newspapers.

              if you can figure out a way to counter that, then maybe you have democracy, til then what you have , Micha, is a pipe dream, further you have no skin in the game even. 😉

              • Micha says:

                Hahaha, if you think the US is a modern merit-based democracy you’re only, at most, half right and half wrong.

                But granting that to be the case so as not to delve into digression, by your own measure, it is possible to achieve a modern merit-based democracy, right?

                So, who are you, a foreigner, to downsize the aspirations of democrats in my home country and tell us that we just have to make do with the shit we have?

                Hardly surprising for the likes of you and JoeAmerica because that’s pretty much what Douglas MacArthur also prescribed at the end of WW2 – a triumphant arrogant asshole who thinks ordinary Filipinos don’t really deserve better government.

              • JoeAm says:

                Hmmm, well, I agree that MacArthur was arrogant and probably wrong in his “return’ strategy, and a lot of foreigners here are arrogant. If LCX and I fall into that category for seeing the Philippines as deeply dynastic, or anything else written here, then why read here, and rant the ad hominem rant, which is the most common, weakest, most fallacious argument on the planet. It is a deeply arrogant, rather assholey, form of debate.

              • Micha says:

                BTW, I have my family all in the Philippines and I have a dual citizenship. Before the pandemic, I also always try to regularly come home to supervise the development of my modest properties since I also intend to retire in my home country.

                If that’s not skin in the game, I don’t know what is.

                What’s yours?

              • Micha,

                If America is not the basis of your “modern, merit-based democracy” , then from where did you get this idea?

                oh, i forgot to credit native Americans too, in my list of origins , so i’m not talking about Little Brown Brother stuff,

                i’m saying USofA is it. and how America got to “modern, merit-based democracy” (or as close to it than any) is thru violence.

                So do an inventory of your “modern, merit-based democracies” , Micha, and I assure you its being propped up by USofA. they may be able to luxuriously say like karl , “I choose rhetoric over violence” , well that’s only because there are US troops as stop gap.

                Again take inventory, Micha… test my claim. or are you talking about a mythic , “modern , merit-based democracy”? if so then, yeah of course, anyone can dream. 😉

              • Micha says:

                Why bother reading? Well, for one I don’t want to miss the performance of a comedy hereabouts.

              • JoeAm says:

                I smile a lot, too.

              • Ah, c’mon don’t be coy, Micha, provide example(s) of your “modern , merit-based democracy” already!!! That we may continue.

              • NHerrera says:

                @Micha, you nailed that one well, the comedy in TSH hidden in serious comments — serious comedy. 🙂

                It’s the spice of life.

        • “I also always try to regularly come home to supervise the development of my modest properties since I also intend to retire in my home country.”

          LOL, you are bourgeoisie, Micha!

          you got commercial or real estate properties? nah, I peg you for plantation, Micha, mangoes? probably coconuts. a bit of piggery action. Which means you have your own fiefdom, people keeping your properties going while you’re back in the states, which means your peasants manning your properties lack the means to own that which they are toiling for. Are you paying them American minimum wage at $15/hour? medical/dental coverage? i’m sure not, thus what’s in store of them is more of the same. will probably end up doing geriatric care for you, Micha.

          See you’re part of the system, Micha. I don’t see you doing agrarian reform, why not just give your land to those peasants toiling it?

          “If that’s not skin in the game, I don’t know what is.” I agree, but it sure looks like you should be promoting dynasties yourself, Micha! 😉

          “What’s yours?” Reveries of Mango Ave. all of which inform my knowledge of the Philippines, which looks alot more nuanced than yours, Micha.

  25. NHerrera says:

    Karl, I note from the news that the confirmed covid “flagpole” PH Covid cases have gone up to 33,169 today (Monday, Jan 10) — with the actual case count probably higher per Vergeire of DOH. [What a laugh; that’s the understatement of the day, considering that the positivity rate is about 44%.]

    Also, about 60% of the confirmed total cases come from NCR, with Quezon City accounting for the most cases in NCR.

    Another thing. I want to believe that the deaths from the Omicron variant are low but confirmed positive numbers to confirmed death numbers take about 2-3 weeks, so we have to wait till about the end of the month to see the death numbers relative to this flagpole rise in cases in recent days — especially considering the quality of PH health facilities. Sorry, for belaboring this point.

    • Karl Garcia says:

      No problem. I value your input.

      • NHerrera says:

        Higher hospitalization numbers with decreased HCW due to their being downed by the virus themselves or who have resigned — bad combination.

        There is a natural corrective, light as it may be — fewer people moving about, partly due to “health patrols.” But that is only for those who can afford to live and not those living in “isang kahig – isang tuka” existence with little to no gov financial aid. Sigh.

        • Karl Garcia says:

          On twitter Gideon Lasco suggested that people stay outdoors and many agree, I do not know but look at the dolomite beach, no crowd control at all.

          Plus they say super spreading happens indoors. Again a question mark for me.

          • kasambahay says:

            maybe if we are all vaccinated and have booster, health protocols can be relaxed and we can all stay outdoors, no face mask and no social distancing needed!

            this is scary to my way of thinking. dahil kahit bakunado, pwedeng nagkasakit ng covid, but majority wont die. it’s the medical bills that worries me! and I hate staying in hospitals, too noisy, too many sick people, too many health staff on ward rounds, talking among themselves and ignoring patients, lol!

        • Karl Garcia says:

          US retired RT PCR last dec 31 here it is still the gold standard.

          some say the flu cases were zero last 2020 in the US so there might be the possibility of inflated COVID cases.
          CDC denied that RT PCR is not accurate and can differentiate between flu and covid, it is that there are two many alternatives available. Before there wwere none.

          • kasambahay says:

            ang alam ko dyan, rt pcr is the final arbiter of corona virus. I heard that too, covid cases maybe inflated by flu cases. not likely though, dahil doctors are not really idiots, if in doubt, they’ll run the test again. and by auscultation alone, doctors have fair idea whether it’s flu of covid. pray, it’s flu, so your hospital bills will be less, lol!

            may trend ngayon to use rapid antigen test (rat), result is faster, maybe less accurate. if in doubt, rt pcr will be used to confirm. then, you’ll be treated accordingly, billed accordingly, and discharged accordingly.

        • NHerrera says:

          A lot are situational with respect to individual risk. For those who can afford to live because of financial means — one should as a matter of habit these days ask, do I have to go out?

          If the destination is outdoors, of course, that will be best, but even then use the best grade of good-fitting face mask one can get (double-mask to the point of paranoia). If one has a choice, to assess the day (Sunday with less traffic) and time to go, using one’s car, of course, is much safer than using public transport, etc. Don’t linger — in and out of the destination as quickly as possible. Why for example eat in a restaurant these days though vaccinated?

          NH is paranoid. Hahaha. Yes.

          [I may mention, I think I said somewhere in the blog that my wife and I had each 2 shots of AstraZeneca vaccines and a booster shot of Moderna.]

        • NHerrera says:

          This “Out Sick” news from Bloomberg concerns the US, but it may reflective of what happens elsewhere, including the Philippines.


          ‘Out Sick’ Threatens Economy

          By Malcolm Scott
          January 10, 2022, 8:06 PM GMT+8

          With the omicron wave of the pandemic rapidly spreading across the U.S., the robust economic recovery is facing a new threat that policy makers have little control over: people calling in sick.

          What started as a series of holiday flight cancellations as pilots and other staff fell ill or were forced into quarantine is becoming a reality in factories, grocery stores and ports and again testing supply chains, Shawn Donnan writes.

          At Capital Economics, senior U.S. economist Andrew Hunter calculated that upwards of 5 million workers were forced to stay home last week alone.

          Widespread absences are already constraining output, and several economists began the new year by downgrading their first-quarter forecasts.

          Even if the hit is temporary, as most anticipate, the disruptions and closures are likely to slow the fragile rebound in some sectors and weigh on businesses’ future plans.

          While economists and investors expect the impact to be short-lived, its magnitude may be sizable. Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody’s Analytics, cut his first-quarter prediction for annualized gross domestic production to close to 2%, down from about 5%.

          But he also raised his forecast for the second quarter, saying businesses and the economy are better prepared to face this new wave.

          “I don’t expect the virus to sustainably subtract from economic growth on net this year,” Zandi said. Though omicron could, he said, affect how the Federal Reserve views the recovery and when it acts to raise rates.

  26. Karl Garcia says:

    speaking of dynasties
    What can dynasties do about the bigger Internal revenue allotment or now called National tax allotment?

    Though this is thirty years in the making, devolved functions of all national government activities need additional man power and training and the LGUS are not prepared.
    This means red tape over the existing red tape. Double whammy.

    Then they want a federal government, they cant even implement the local government code properly.

  27. Karl Garcia says:

    Good article by Heydarian.

    The Philippines, contrary to troll belief has too little democracy.

  28. Karl Garcia says:

    Found this cynical or factual take on dynasties.

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