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144 Responses to “Contact Us”
  1. Oliver says:

    Hi, nice blog Joe, cannot confirm this interesting news from Manila Bulletin, Chinese nationals armed with SMGs, silencers, pistols, grenades and IEDs captured by PNP personnel in Ilocos. Chinese guys heavily armed and they have silencers and IEDs? Are these guys spec ops infiltrators, NPA military advisers or just plain nuts?

  2. Joe America says:

    Thank, Oliver. Good of you to stop by. That is amazing if true. I argue peace in a recent blog and the Chinese are possibly invading with arms surreptitiously. I wonder what would happen if four Filipinos were caught on Taiwan with IED’s, or in the outskirts of Hong Kong.

    • Ian says:

      Hi Joe,

      Any chance of implementing that free speech you are keen on and letting people post without the need of obtaining their details? Who would want to post what they really think as it is highly probable that these posts are being monitored and no one should be asked to identify themselves if this is even remotely the case.

      • The system requires three details, name, e-mail, and computer ID. They are not provided by TSOH to anyone, and I’m not aware of Word Press having been hacked or loose with data. Indeed, WP is high on privacy and security. I do use the information from time to time to impose moderation or blocking on people who are offensive with their posts. We welcome civil comments from any viewpoint, and people are free to counter arguments as well, as long as they are civil. If you somehow feel suspicious of these details, then I suppose there is nowhere on line that you will find the pure freedom you seek, because these are common and ordinary tools essential to running a dialogue.

  3. oliverapin says:

    If armed Filipinos were captured in Taiwan, they will most likely face the “firing squad” or very lengthy prison terms.

    This news reminds me of a hush-hush tsismis I heard a long time ago in the 70s about Chinese submarines infiltrating Philippine territory and landing Chinese special operations personnel that provide weapons, money and training to local red rebels.

    If this story from Manila Bulletin is true and with the escalating use of IEDs by local red rebels here against AFP and PNP units, I cant help imagining Chinese spec ops are actually here with or without the NPA, killing and maiming Filipino military, police and civilian government personnel.

  4. oliverapin says:

    Maybe, but I hope this is not the case. A peaceful solution to the West Philippine Sea issue is much better. According to the news BID theorizes the captured Chinese guys “had planned to undertake terrorist activity.” I hope they are just gun/drug runners.

  5. Attila says:

    In the PHILIPPINE PHOTO FILE you may want to show the caption so your readers would know where the photo was taken.

  6. Joe America says:

    Indeed, I can do that, Attila. Thanks for the suggestion.

  7. Attila says:

    It is Karga Tapas.

  8. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    Hey Joe,

    Are you on cable-dsl internet? Or wi-fi internet? If Wi-fi are you on enterprise or home use only? My son been badgering me about slow wi-fi internet access. Our area do not have cable-dsl internet. My son was using USB Wi-Fi. He wanted faster so he installed Smart Bro Home. Due to his heavy download habit of Anime movies his bandwidth was cut down from 1mb/s to 104kb/second. They called Smart they said they are implementing Fair Use Policy just like AT&T over here in the U.S.

    PLDT’s website is absolutely USELESS. It is full of fuzzwords, biz jargon, doublespeak thoughting that they would sound professional, well, Filipinos are fond of jargons and deep sounding words.

    Are you using Smart Bro Enterprise? Is it goot? Do they have consistent speed?

    I remain,


    • Joe America says:

      Ha, and I remain too, no matter what the critics want.

      Smart Bro was totally useless in this region because of weak signal. Globe Tattoo does much better, but still cuts in and out about 10 times a day, some days more. But web pages load quickly when it is on. Plus my UBS modem has up to 5 wi-fi connections, so I can run the cell phones and a second computer through it. Globe went through a broad upgrade of service about a year ago that improved their delivery speeds.

      I hope that helps.

      I remain, most days, Joe.

      • Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

        Thanks! So, it really depends on location. I’ll have him check Globe out. Thank you, again.

  9. Attila says:

    You may want to check this out.

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks for another fine musical introduction to go along with Charmaine Clamor. You are hereby appointed the Society’s Music Appreciation Director, or MAD heh heh. I googled the group and song and it is a Visayan folk song. I find it interesting that music is both an historical and a current obsession . . . well, maybe that’s the wrong word . . . “important part of the Philippine soul”. Native music ought to be a global genre. “Waray Waray” by the One Man Band is roundly blasted from the speakers hereabouts during any festival or party. It’s classic, and I’m sure there are many gems like this lying about in the musty music books.

  10. Louie says:

    Hi Joe! I got here because of a reference to your article on Estrada and Hong Kong. You’ve got very interesting and insightful pieces here. But first things first, how are you and your family? Your last post was “Friday”. If that was Nov. 8, that was the day Haiyan made landfall here in the Philippines. Your electricity got cut and you mentioned you’re iiving in the Visayas. How are you? I pray that you and your family are safe. May God protect and keep you.

  11. Maria Socorro Reyes says:

    Miss your posts. But I know helping others comes first. Bless you.

  12. Attila says:

    Joe you may want to watch this. It says that the Philippines has a debt of over $60 billion. 5% of that is held by the USA. What about the rest? Maybe China?

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks Attila. Worth exploring for sure.

      • methersgate says:

        80% of lending by Banks in the Philippines is to the Government – this is at least in part due to the lack of a credit scoring system, but also due to conservatism on the part of the bankers. So there’s your answer – the Filipinos own the debts of the Philippines Government!

  13. Attila says:

    You may want to watch this documentary called “Kano: An American and His Harem”. My wife is embarrassed about his movie but she thinks it is the reality. Maybe it will inspire you to write an article about this part of the Filipino culture.–An-American-and-His-Harem

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks, Attila, I’ll note this for viewing when my internet connection gains a little speed. Right now I’m the bandwidth of a gnat. I’m sure other readers will pick it up.

  14. Mackyart says:

    Hi Joe,
    I’ve stumbled onto your site via a shared article on facebook (the recent Aquino piece) and recognized a few of your articles here (like the Estrada/HK piece).

    I was wondering if you have a twitter or facebook account that links your writing from this site? It would be great to get, say a tweet update, whenever you have a new piece posted. Goes without saying that I enjoyed your writing and you bring an interesting perspective to the table.

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks, Mackyart. The blogs are issued on Facebook (Joe America), Google+ (Joe America) and Twitter (@societyofhonor). I’m glad you get something from the articles.

  15. Joe,

    My wife and live on Panay Island and have a blog about our life here. We would like your permission to reprint your article, “The Idiot’s Guide to Surviving a Natural Disaster” on our blog It give a more vivid sense of the storm than anything we’ve read. We’ll happily give credit and links. Bob and Carol Hammerslag

  16. Attila says:

    How about Chinese Filipinos wearing ‘Yellow Guilt’ bracelets to remind them of Chinese privilege? You may want to watch this report:

    • Joe America says:

      I swear that the human race has gone into some kind of devolution. Rather than advance, we are regressing. Disturbing, those bracelets. I think anyone who puts one on must have a pretty poor sense of self.

  17. Attila says:

    When my Filipina wife came to the US she was surprised to see that New York is not a white city. She explained to me that Filipinos in general believe that New York is a white American city. As a matter of fact most Filipinos back think of the US as a white country. She went to see her ant in Baltimore and friends in upstate New York and she came back with the same experience. She is still in “shock” over this. Now she knows that whites are fast becoming the minority and America is going through a change. She was also surprised at the anti white sentiment coming from everywhere including her Filipino church. I also personally heard Filipinos saying that you can not trust the white people. It seems that whites are used as a scape goats and as a convenient excuse to blame. In my experience devolution is definitely going on. I rather move back to Hungary and take my wife with me than go through this. Good thing that I just renewed my Hungarian passport (doubles as a Eu passport) and have it as a back up.

    • Joe America says:

      Yes, it is strange, this tendency toward shallowness and judgment of others to explain one’s problems. I can’t figure it out, why it persists in getting worse rather than better. Like politics in the US. No one WANTS to be a diplomat, just a loudmouth appealing to extremes.

  18. David Murphy says:

    Hi Joe, There have been a lot of comments concerning corruption in the Philippine government and many consider the US to be free of corruption. That is not so. While it may be less blatant than in the Philippines and is technically legal, corruption exists in the form of campaign contributions by special-interest groups to the legislators. These funds are intended to be used for re-election expenses but unspent funds are available for personal use by the legislators when they retire or are not re-elected. It goes into their pockets. The amount of money that is contributed in this fashion and the cost to the taxpayers is incredible, exceeding (I think) the amounts stolen in the present pork-barrel scandal in the Philippines. And the record of voting shows that legislation beneficial to these special-interest groups is supported almost 100% by the legislators who accepted the contributions. In essence the US has gone from “Government by the people, for the people” to “Government: buy the legislators.for big business” You and your readers might want to access (sorry, can’t figure out how to activate the link) to learn more about the situation and solutions. The 3-minute film alone is worth the visit. It may inspire some Filipinos to act or at least prepare them for the next variation on how to profit from public office and suggest some possible responses to the present situation. Or you might want to make it a subject of one of your blogs. I think you could do a great job on it.

    • Joe America says:

      I despair over US politics, which indeed has gone wildly outside the bounds of true, honorable democracy. It is also a game of favors and power, and occasionally instructional about the Philippines, but a little much for me to take on. The US political process was taken out of the people’s hands by a supreme court ruling from a couple of years ago that permits corporations to contribute unlimited amounts of money to campaign groups. So power-people operate much like Binay to buy votes with the bludgeoning of voters by advertising.

  19. Attila says:

    Hi Joe, if you have some extra time than you may want to watch this video, I hope you will find it worthy to talk about.

  20. i7sharp says:

    Joe, how about this – for something positive amidst the “negatives.”

    Despite everything, can we look at Ruby/Hagupit as …

    This can probably help give ideas:


  21. i7sharp says:

    Hi, Joe

    This comment I am posting is probably
    the 36th here at “Contact Us” – the 1st one being dated May 29, 2013.
    (My other comment here was the 35th.)

    As of this writing, there have been
    164 comments (and there be more, it seems) on the topic dated December 5, 2014:

    Joe, do you have suggestions on how best to navigate in this topic – and in the rest of your blogs? btw, thanks also for the Philippine Blog Center. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Maraming salamat.


    • Joe America says:

      Ha, not good suggestions other than endurance, rather like slogging through the weeds looking for flowers. I wish my system could number comments for ease of reference, as Raissa Robles does at her blog, but it does not have that capability. If the volume of comments remains high, I might have to look for a new platform. But right now, that is not a priority. One tip, you can link to any comment by going to the date line above the comment and copying that link. So you can easily pass links to specific comments to others.

  22. yesnoy46 says:

    Hey, Joe! I have just started blogging today and I feel great! I have been following your blog and I really like your posts. I if fou can find the time, please read my first blog on Sen. Grace Poe

  23. Cleo says:

    Dear Joe,
    I have been out of the loop for a few days now (gone to the province to watch over grandchildren). I just want to let you know how much I appreciate your blogs on Philippine media’s irresponsible handling of news . My disappointment with local media is patent. When I got sick of inquirer I thought of switching to Rappler but was thoroughly disenchanted when I followed their reports on the Zamboanga siege where their reporters gave readers the impression Roxas and Gazmin were sleeping on the job while Binay was busy talkin to his friend Misuari to release hostages. Even after they were called out for erroneous reporting on the “release” of hostages, Rappler chose to publish a reply saying “we stand by our story” .

    Thanks and keep safe.


    • Joe America says:

      Thank you for the encouragement and kind words, Cleo. I do think Rappler has good intent, but junior reporters, and, like most, editors are reluctant to admit a mistake or apologize. Not that that enables them to see President Aquino’s view and better . . .

  24. I like your exquisitely written articles. For someone who has trouble concentrating for long periods, I say your sentence flow is therapeutic for me. Please continue writing more.

  25. sonny says:

    Joe, I don’t know where to address this news item from Yahoo News. Pls do however is best.

    “U.S. Ambassador Philip Goldberg handed a check worth $1.38 million to Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, who prosecutes Philippine government officials accused of corruption.

    The returned money consists of proceeds from the sale of a Trump Tower condo in New York City and two Citibank accounts traced to former Armed Forces of the Philippines comptroller Maj. Gen. Carlos Garcia.

    U.S. authorities have helped the Philippines in the past to prosecute high-profile figures charged with corruption and other crimes, including the former dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who was deposed in a 1986 public revolt.

    Philippine and U.S. investigators determined that Garcia laundered a substantial portion of his criminal proceeds through the U.S., according to Goldberg.”

  26. sonny says:

    Joe, you said:

    “Have other loyalty lines to Japan and Australia and even Malaysia and others who abide by the basic rule of survival intellectualism, willingness to sacrifice for others in the loyalty chain.”

    This opened up an old sore about negotiations to renew the US-RP Agreement before Pinatubo. One of Cory’s panel was then Sen Rene Saguisag who was a vehement proponent for breaking off from the US entirely. His persuasiveness would have counted for legal enlightenment and far-reaching vision were he on the opposite side of the question. He was going for a long-pass when running plays and tight-end gains would have accomplished much and more. Ferdinand Marcos had everyone beat on this one. The US was already using, uncontestedly, the Spratlys for military exercises at that time. Out of 20-20 vision I wanted to throw this at ex-Sen Rene’s face. But our generation is already “moot” anyways.

    I hope your blog on “the loyalty chain” will fare better on the vision agenda that we sorely lack.

  27. sonny says:

    Joe, how’s this for a conspiracy theory:

    This is not to say that the Monroe Doctrine is the same as what I will now call the China/Dragon Doctrine. According to me, the Dragon Doctrine consists of reclaiming/repeating/imitating activities/philosophy of the Ming Dynasty, specifically the projecting of a virtual Chinese hegemony like Admiral Chen Ho (1371-1435 AD) did in his 7 naval expeditions under Emperor Yongli. These expeditions covered from Nanking to the Ryukyus, Vietnam, Brunei, Sulu, Surabaya (Java) on to Strait of Malacca, Pakistan, Ceylon, the Strait of Ormuz (Persian Gulf), Saudi Arabian coast along the Arabian Sea into the Gulf of Aden up the Red Sea to Mecca (the Admiral was a Chinese Muslim) down to Mogadishu along the Somalian coast up to Mombasa then back across the Indian Ocean to southeast Asia and back to Canton and Nanking! All that is needed is a Hitler-like person or group to say the whole world owes the Dragon and its people and back it Chinese cash, industrial might and lots of borrowed and stolen and hacked science and technology.

    Is it just me? ๐Ÿ™‚

    (The Philippines is just loose change)

    • Joe America says:

      I would say it is not a theory. It is what is going on. There is no Hitler type, but the clique of military leaders holding sway must be one arrogant pack of puffed up Chinese racial supremacists. I find fascinating the bending of truths and arguments. Binay and the Chinese rulers are cut of exactly the same cloth.

  28. sonny says:

    Joe, need to get this off before I lose it:

    It seems to me the US is working off AT Mahan’s philosophy that the Pacific is the American Lake while China wants the So China sea and eastern too, to be the Chinese Lake. Thanks

    • Joe America says:

      I think that is accurate, sonny. American ownership was purchased through lives lost in WWII perhaps, and the daily use of the lake for passage of product and flight of military jets. China wants the same rights, plus the minerals and foodstuffs under the sea. 12,000 poached turtles were rescued in Palawan the other day. Chinese poachers. Commercial forces, and military, are pushing up against each other.

      • sonny says:

        Aye, Joe. As late as the turn of the 20th century, there was a high demand for trepang (sea cucumbers) by China, high enough to fuel the traffic for slaves by the Moros. The source for humans were the coastal towns of Luzon and the Visayas. This in turn necessitated the Spanish and American interdicts of Mindanao and Sulu.

        • Joe America says:

          I read “Asimov’s Guide to the Bible” at the same time I was deeply engaged in Baptist Bible study, late 1980’s. As a result of those two compelling forces, I emerged with my own peculiar faith based upon history, lessons about values and living, and a personal spiritual enrichment that deepened as I visited various churches, cathedrals, mosques, temples and chapels in Europe and Asia. It persists today. Just don’t ask me to explain it.

          • sonny says:

            More power and grace to you, Joe. We are surrounded by primal forces and we seek and pray for the correct lenses and leverages to pull us through. Pax!

              • sonny says:

                Joe, a good read. I hope you have the time. The article is about the battle for the Turkish mind between Islam and Humanism, a paradigm that can be repeated in our BBL search for answers.


              • Joe America says:

                That is a most interesting read. The “secularism” of Turkey is aimed specifically at preserving the Christian heritage within the nation’s historical and cultural fabric. Erdogan set out to destroy Ataturk’s contributions to the balance Turkey represents, and ran up against the desires of the people for the unique heritage of acceptance.

                But the force of Islaam is powerful and single-minded, so the story continues.

                The Philippines also has a major religion and a minor (more than one, actually), in terms of membership, and “secular” means none has a preferred role in government. On paper. Christianity had its aggressive day in the sun and is now passive. Islaam is not so passive. It makes for trouble. The MILF presents passive, and hope. If the mode switches to aggressive, I fear there is not much hope.

  29. sonny says:

    “I must say, I am so very, very proud of the quality of commentary that arises in this blog. Intelligent, earnest, respectful, creative, humorous at times . . . always rich. Thanks to all of you for how much you give, to me, and to others.”

    I couldn’t heartily agree more, Joe. This also reflects 100% on the driver of the blog. As Picard would say: Warp factor 7. Engage! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • sonny says:

      (Have you ever watched ADVENTURES OF DON JUAN with Errol Flynn?) If not, I’ll just pocket my smile and catch up with the rest of the senior travelers. If yes, I will share.

      • Joe America says:

        Missed it. Musta been before my time. ๐Ÿ™‚

        • sonny says:

          IMDB list 1948 as release year. Somehow the film found its way to Manila double program theaters in the ’50s. It’s kinda campy by today’s standards. But bear in mind, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg grew up with these swashbucklers. This film particularly was freely laced with memorable pick-up lines, e.g.:

          Don Juan: Beloved, no power on Earth could’ve kept me from you. In all this world there’s been but one image in my heart, one vision before my eyes…

          Catherine: Yes, yes, go on…

          Don Juan: I have loved you since the beginning of time.

          Catherine: But you only met me yesterday…

          Don Juan: Why, that was when time began!

    • Joe America says:

      I once ran into Patrick Stewart at the Opera in LA. He was in that mode of pretending that everyone in the theater lobby is not looking at me . . .

      What a huge step for him to go from Shakespeare on the stage to Picard on the deck. He made it though. Thanks for your kind words.

      • sonny says:

        My in-airport encounters with celebrities were with Charlton Heston (6’3″), Walt Frazier (6’4″) and Carlos Boozer (6’9″). Suffice to say my mouth could have trapped a fly easily. ๐Ÿ™‚ Speak of larger than life people. Of course for me, even standing beside a Vatican Swiss guard qualifies; my son at 5’8″ also starts to get my notice. Sen BAM at 5’10” definitely did. You and your son also do qualify, Joe.

        • Joe America says:

          Sammy Davis Junior for me. And I sat in a bar in Australia with the actress who played the fiance of King Ralph in that particular movie. Her name escapes me but we had a delightful conversation. She’s taller than I am, I think.

          • sonny says:

            Joely Richardson, perhaps? (British accent maybe)

            • Joe America says:

              You know, it was either her or that twin we are all supposed to have somewhere on the planet.

              • sonny says:

                Ms Joely is listed at 5’10” (aw, that’s tall) and attended private academy at Ojai, CA (aw, that’s elite). I tell you, Joe I live in a different planet. Lilliput, maybe. ๐Ÿ™‚

              • Joe America says:

                She’s very tall, indeed, which was a part of the joke in King Ralph, and in real life, she does not have the deep, manly voice done for the movie. A very pleasant lady, if that’s who I was chatting with. Personable, I guess is the term. Not stuck up.

  30. sonny says:

    Joe, we are past our Binay blogs. But I came across this article that “shows,” IMO, the VP’s alleged malfeasances and his being number one Boy Scout is spot-on as far as Boy Scouts of America modus vivendi is concerned. The article:

    • Joe America says:

      The article saddens me, in a way, sonny, because of the final call for Christians to leave the Boy Scouts because the new position on homosexuals is non-Christian. The author finds fault with Caesar, and the Scouts following Caesar. That is an example of institutions dividing rather than finding the way to express themselves so that they do not condemn others of different belief. It suggests we are nothing but a species of totalitarian animals fighting for our territory. And Christians are just a part of the pack fighting for dominance.

      The BSP is held hostage by the Philippine culture of impunity which mandates the closing of ranks behind the most powerful, and, for the BSP Board, that would be the Totalitarian in Chief, BSP President Binay.

  31. Caliphman says:

    Hey Joe, I tried posting something about 8 hours ago but could not. I had no problems posting yesterday and before that. Did you just put a block on today? Let me know so I dont bother trying to post if its the latter. Thanks.

    • Joe America says:

      No blocks, so I have no idea why that would happen.

      • Caliphman says:

        I know what happened, Joe. WordPress your host uses Kizmet, its antivirus filter and when it sees a post with an html address like http://xxx.xxxx.html
        anywhere in the post, it will automatically stop processing the post.
        HTML is the program language used for web coding unfortunately Kizmet apparently cannot distinguish between html web commands and legitimate web addresses ending in html which is widely used when photo images are included in the web address link.

        Hope this info is useful for those other posters in your blog who run into this predicament.

  32. Gerry says:

    Hi JoeAm,

    I visited your blog for the 1st time last week and left a comment. This time, I want to share an article by Calixto Chikiamco that I read only this week. I saw an AIM-Rappler sponsored forum in YouTube 2 days ago and he was a speaker in the event. He spoke about the 5 arrows that will make the Philippine growth inclusive and propel us to the next level of development.

    It resonated with me because I have been thinking about Arrows 1,2,3 and 5 for a long time. My experiences in the Philippines, US, and Canada showed me that openness to global talent and global businesses help propel countries like Canada, USA, Singapore etc. I have more to say about these 5 arrows but will do so via an email to you in the future.

    In the meantime, I think you should read this 5 Arrows article and perhaps also get in touch with him. I don’t know what his reputation is in the economics circle in the Philippines but when he spoke, he appeared to be a smart person. I hope he is also a man of integrity because I think he would be a good future NEDA chief.

    Gerry (btw – – not my real name – – like you, I prefer to remain anonymous for now)

    • Joe America says:

      Interesting list of distinguished fellows, to include the likes of Gary Olivar and Peter Wallace. I would be interested in what our economic gurus here, Micha and RHiro, have to say about the five arrows.

      FEF seems to be a pro-business lobbying group if I read the “Policy Advocacy” initiatives correctly.

  33. sonny says:

    Joe, I’m keeping this note for myself: some JoeAm blog-articles of necessity (volume growth) are leaving would-be topic participant voices be heard. How to help the situation?

  34. HighFive says:

    Hi Joeam,
    I am so glad that your blog site has find its way into the office of the highest official of the land. I am doubly glad that the President mentioned you during his SONA. That SONA earned you a celebrity status. And you deserve it for being an excellent opinion maker. I believe that your ideas will play a very important role in shaping up the landscape of Philippine politics & government policies. I appreciate the hard work, ideas and opinion makings on things that have something to do in improving my country that you made your home. You are a heaven sent.

  35. Jay Voltaire J Apao says:

    I always notice your blogs on FB but my first time to visit your site. Nice one Joe!

  36. sonny says:

    Joe, China has come a-visiting within 12 miles of US territory. Obama is on. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  37. sonny says:

    It’s like you read my mind ‘coz I was going to ask if Popoy has anything on the pipeline. So I’m looking forward to Friday’s installment. Also, I thought I’d call them Popoy’s Munchausen Essays. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • sonny says:

        Joe, you remind of Dr David Barrows. Would’ve loved to meet the statesman but I was only 11 when he passed away.

        I came across him in his articles about the Philippines and Filipinos written for the defunct ASIA magazine of colonial times. He was the first foreigner I know who gave such glowing reports about the Filipino people, a true anthropologist and educator. Jose Rizal himself, our national hero contributed to negative canards on Filipinos. Everyone is familiar with Rizal’s essay THE INDOLENCE OF THE FILIPINO, citing the title description. Dr Barrows on the contrary pointed to the working habit of the ordinary Filipino: waking up before the break of dawn until 10am then works indoors away from searing heat and naps a little before going back around 2:30pm to finish the rest of his work sometime before the evening hours. Dr Barrows ran the Dept of Education always with in-depth and widespread education of the Filipino mind. Sound familiar?

    • sonny says:

      Apologies to Popoy, Joe. I have another phenom to describe in mind. Can’t think of the name. Will write when I find out.

  38. sonny says:

    Joe, Is the Society ready for primetime, radio especially? Politainment format maybe? (I’m watching a McLoughlin-grouplike tv program as I ask this. Just ruminating)

    • Joe America says:

      I personally and not ready for that, but it may be that Will or others could take it that direction. It would require a great commitment of time and effort. Not something to take on lightly.

  39. makabayan says:

    I watched Heneral Luna and I am late already in watching it. I realized that what they depicted in the movie is also true to our society. We have a President we are democratic we want change. What I realize is that we dont need those first two things for change democracy and president. because filipinos by mentality and culture are not suited for democracy. we have our own vested personal interest. we are undisciplined people. we cannot obey the law that is why for the pass many years democracy has failed. we need a benevolent dictator like luna who has a will to power for change that has no vested self interest but only for the common good. he need to go strong and hard. debate and long process is not suited for filipinos we need an iron hand. but it was not marcos nor it will be duterte. because that system wont also be suited for a filipino to run because right now filipinos are undisciplined, vested with self interest and un heroic also not patriotic. so i guest we must stay with what we have and choose wisely next election

    • Joe America says:

      Yes, I wonder how the nation can gain the discipline yet keep the fun, the life, the soul of happy-go-lucky and forget the clock. Some would argue that a clock ought not be the center of our lives.

  40. sonny says:

    Joe, I just came across this as part of my online periodic feed. I hope the Society can make use of the information to help the struggle for the positive. Love your tweet blog for the period.

    A must-read: “Great to be president” (article & combox). Thanks for publishing, Joe.

    • Joe America says:

      In my personal experience, Filipino migrants tend to have an admirably โ€˜sunnyโ€™ disposition. I asked one Filipino migrant why he thought his fellow countrymen were so cheerful. He thought maybe it is because many Filipinoโ€™s have parents or grandparents who have experienced a lot of poverty and suffering, and even now life is fairly simple in the Philippines โ€“ he says itโ€™s about being grateful for what you have.

      What an uplifting article, sonny, and most interesting trend. Thanks. I’ll find use for it somewhere along the line.

  41. sonny says:

    Joe, looks like the Society has been spot on regarding the performance of Pres Aquino as we are entering the election prepping stage. Hope this sheds more light.

  42. Shelly Olvido says:

    I was suppose to leave this comment under “Juan’s upon a time” entry but found it inappropriate so I deleted it before my finger hit “post reply.” I welcome my self to one, if not the most intellectual discussions and exchanging of ideas in the the entire blogosphere. I will be both a spectator and a student, learn only from intellectual people who knows what they are saying. I wanna veer away from the mediocre facebook and tweeter trends that now dominate the social medial. I have been reading blog entry from this site for over a year now but was not sure whether to subscribe or not. I feel like a college drop out reading all the comments because I will always be under the impression that the people behind these comments are way above my middle class income league. But I want to learn…I want to be educated..So today I finally have that courage..Mellinials need to know there is a far more interesting topic than celebrity chismis..With your approval Joe Am, I’d like to share some of your entries about politics on my facebook account to help educate the young minds.
    Meanwhile, I’ll read anither archive entry as I wait for your new post.
    More Power and God Bless the Philippines!!

    • Joe America says:

      I’m glad you found the blog, Shelly, and are enjoying the discussions. The comments come from a wide range of people, of all ages and income brackets and backgrounds. It is the absence of walls that make the comment threads so rich. Enjoy the reading!

  43. Shelly Olvido says:

    Hi Sir Joe,
    This is Shelly Olvido. I was wondering if you can educate my young mind about something.
    If we switch to FEDERALISM from a DEMOCRATIC form of government, does that involve charter change? Babaliin ba natin at babaliwalain ang constitution to switch to this form of government? I am a member of The Silent Majority and while FEDERALISM is something new to PInoys, as a responsible citizen of this country, my advocacy, just like you, is to help share the information to people who slowly fall into the trap.

    Thank you in advance Sir Joe…cant wait to read the next article!

    God Bless this country!

    • Joe America says:

      I’d have to study that myself. I’m pretty sure charter change would be required. Federalism could retain democratic forms depending on the set-up. There are strong arguments against federalism, for sure. No size of scale for big infrastructure projects. Funding mechanisms for military expenditures and other central functions. Lots of bickering. It is no easy solution for anything, I think.

  44. Hi Joe,
    Having come across your blog just recently is a testament of how far behind I got stalled from my writing and reading. In some way, we are direct opposites of each other. With me being a Filipino now residing in the US is probably the most fundamental difference. But being on the outside looking in gave me a clearer view of my dear country. I am saddened how others will degrade their fellow Filipinos who don’t share their views. Name calling and insults are never good. It’s sad when you see people burning bridges just because of politics.

    Anyway, I’m just posting this to express my appreciation of your views. We may not agree on everything, but your posts are still enriching. Well, anything viewed from a different perspective is always enriching. Thank you for looking my country in a positive light. A country I’m sure you also call your own. May God always bless you and your family and always grant you the wisdom to see things clearly and share those views with everyone else. Salamat Joe.

  45. sonny says:

    Joe, I thought I’d share this article apropos our China-Philippines concerns. I hope you can use it. Am still an avid follower of you and the Society.

    all my best to you and the family.

    • Joe America says:

      Very interesting reading, sonny, and will go directly into the “Must Read” box. The article states that China is heading for trouble because the one-child policy was a disaster, and now the nation has a bubble of elderly poor that will bog the nation down and force some tough choices between international adventures and domestic caretaking. The point being, we should take care in any kind of population control initiative.

      Thanks for the good good-morning read.

      Best to you, too, sonny.

      • sonny says:

        Joe, I think now is the time for the Philippines to propagate Baseball as the metaphor for Philippine political life: the weather is suitable, the players and managers are motley in talent and comedy and drama, the fans/spectators are all equal to expectations and satisfaction.

        And Karl can be Yogi again. ๐Ÿ™‚

  46. sonny says:

    Joe, on your family “outing” to Malacanang, I can only say: Mirabile visu, mirabile dictu, amice! ๐Ÿ™‚ (Words failed me earlier on)

  47. sonny says:

    Joe, these last few pieces in the TSH and the resulting comments have been quite a honey hive of productive thought. I must compliment you and everyone for generating light not heat for the most part. It is quite satisfying to the spirits of Socrates, Ockham, the eastern and western philosophers and more, walking the “halls of TSH.”

    I hope and pray that we will be successful in “backing this administration” into the home-garage of true progress and benefit for everybody, “deontologizing high-falutin” ( ๐Ÿ™‚ ) principles, notwithstanding. (your words and edgar’s, priceless).

  48. sonny says:

    Joe, just a whiff of socio-political fresh air: ๐Ÿ™‚

    Early August, my San Beda high school class (’59) will be hosting an appreciation luncheon for VP Leni Robredo. Our class conducted a very active vote-campaign for her last elections. The occasion will also have a strong San Beda Law School flavor: VP Leni, Pres Du30, ex-Sen Saguisag, SBC Law ’64 and mentor to both will be there, plus our class “contribution” to PH Bar topnotchers ’67 (1st & 5th places); all are San Beda Law alums; Pres Du30 won’t be there. (Not quite at par with your family ‘date’ with Pres Pnoy ๐Ÿ™‚ ).

    I got the invite but 9000 miles is a little far. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    • Joe America says:

      Ah, what a distinguished realm you circulate in, sonny. We can snob nob together! ahahaha It’s great that you retain these relationships. I lost all my high school contacts shortly after college. Very different . . . although I think some in the home town still get together.

  49. hawaii dave says:

    Aloha Joe……I just found this site and find it interesting, (rare for me)…call me Hawaii Dave…been to the PI more than 20x…usually not less than 35 days at a time and sometimes 3 months at a time over the last 20 years. The PI is sometimes my muse…motivating me to cultivate open mindedness and seeking new perspectives, new angles from which to gain knowledge. New knowledge. True knowledge, because sometimes what we “know” isn’t true. I look forward to participating in the discussions here. Aloha to all of you here in this website…..dave

  50. sonny says:

    Hey, hey, Joe! The Chicago Cubs did it. Now the Philippines should do it – win that is, in the face of great odds and challenges. The Cubbies have shown the way – spunk, strong pitching and flawless defense (most of the time) and teamwork always.

    Regards. — sonny

    • Ah, yes, Sonny, that was quite a game. Through darkness and rain, an extra inning and 86 relief pitchers. ๐Ÿ™‚ If the Cubs can do it in 108 years, the PH can make it in, ohhh, a couple hundred.

      • sonny says:

        Memory lane stroll again … I got into the whole Cubs thingy in 1969: first half of the season thru July 4 season break, the Cubs were at the top of their division or close to. Then it happened, the down slide came at the start of the post-July 4 break, total disaster irreversible losing, the Cub season dropped with a thud; so much so that a Chicago sportswriter called the Cubs, as the Philippine major league franchise, the Manila Folders! Fast forward to 2016, game 6 of the World Series: Addison Russell, Cubs shortstop, Florida youngster, son of a Filipino single mother hits the grand slam homer that saved the Cubs from elimination from the series! Ha, I said, there is Justice in the world!! Russell’s homer stays side by side with Mickey Mantle’s similar World Series feat. Now that is in the books. ๐Ÿ™‚

        (I don’t know when the series afterglow will wear off, Joe. Cheers!)

        • Ahhh, my. Baseball is slow and technical but rich with spit and personalities bigger than life. Yogi Berra, Tom Lasorda, Don Larson, Sandy Koufax . . . my recollections are heavy up on the Dodgers plus my own highlights as a young pitcher who got his moments in the glory. I’ve not kept track lately, but who would miss the Cubs going for drama and history? Fantastic game. Cheers back!

  51. archie redula says:

    Hi Joe, What is your comment on a post below from another site.
    FACT: The top contributor of PD30 in the May election, Antonio Floirendo Jr., is the son of Antonio Floirendo Sr., an alleged frontman and crony of Ferdinand Marcos.
    By constantly reading and checking the comments of these online warriors, you can theorize that their objective are as follows:
    Prepare for the return of BBM and Authoritarian Rule by capitalizing on the popularity of Duterte.
    1. Demolish the Pro Democracy Movement, the Aquino’s and the spirit of EDSA.
    2. While the Yellows are being demolished, tag everybody who opposes PD30 as affiliated with Yellow or LP so their credibility will be instantly damaged.
    3. Attack all groups that may oppose the return of authoritarian rule by:
    a. Demean the credibility of Free Press by attacking the mainstream media while creating bogus websites and FB pages.
    b. Grab the opportunity that most netizens use free FB by spreading false news while relentlessly attacking pro democracy groups.
    c. Downplay the role of the Commission on Human Rights and link them to pushers and criminals.
    d. Downplay the role of the church and the spirit of EDSA.
    e. Constantly instill fear among PD30 supporters by spreading rumors that LP will soon take over and that Plan B is in the making.(knowing this in impossible because of the supermajority coalition, and LP is in shambles)
    4. Promote BBM and authoritarian rule fueled by Goebbel’s like propagandists in social media. Praise Martial Law and promote it as “Golden Years”
    What we can see now in the social media is a product of a well oiled propaganda machine:
    Then out of nowhere, here comes the widow, Robredo? who is she? but she beat BBM !
    Thus they train their guns on Robredo. Check the pages of Mocha,Thinking Pinoy,Sassot, Contreras, Rivera and other online lieutenants.
    There are token resistance though like the likes of Madam Claudia and other FB pages that counterattacks but they are being outnumbered.
    Let us all be vigilant.

    • That sure seems consistent with what is occuring. The Duterte/Marcos/Arroyo coalition has a huge taxpayer checkbook with which to buy loyalty. There are two flies in the ointment, the economy (potential big losses by businessmen), and the military. People are quiet. No EDSA repeat.

  52. Ma. Socorro G. Naguit says:

    Most interesting. We all have had a foretaste of both Heaven and hell from our individual and collective experience as a nation. I am a Catholic, therefore taught to rely upon His guidance through the Holy Spirit’s revelations and Jesus’ teachings through His Word and the example of the life he lived. I regard our life as a continuum only seemingly bifurcated by what we know as the first death. Thus, even here on earth, though we abide by the convention of time as a human construct, we get a sense of the eternal. The Kingdom of God is within you, our Lord has said. God’s Mind, a glimpse of which is given us if we seek Him ardently and humbly, is both child-like and infinite in depth, immeasurable by the human mind in breadth and height. I know He looks kindly on loving suppositions such as these. Within us is His Kingdom. He reigns over all who desire to be in His Kimgdom. Our abhorrence of what Trump and Du30 ( by a divine hint, in journalism to write 3O means a piece is finished, or the one spoken of has died, passed on to what lies beyond this life) represent, in company with the serpent in Eden, Judas, Pilate, Nebuchadnezzar, and closer to our time, Mussolini, Hitler, all those who preached and lived all the opposite of what our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, taught and teaches still–our natural, instinctive recognition of what is good and what is evil– all these mean that we are already, in our kalooban, in His Kingdom.

  53. sonny says:

    Joe, because we are talking about tyrants, tyranny and Socrates, I thought these 2 pieces on the subjects might be of help (clarify & expand) me mostly. Any feedback from you will be much appreciated and very useful to me as an US resident. (My bias regarding Pres Obama is only incidental to the subjects in the essay and I mean no disrespect to you or anybody. He is now part of history.)

    As always, my best regards to you and the family.

    • Thanks for the good wishes, sonny, and best as well to you and those near. Two very interesting articles, the latter of which is particularly pertinent to the current discussion on unity, and you may wish to insert it there. Interesting how perspectives change depending on whether one is a politician or philosopher, in one’s heart.

      As to Father Schall’s commentary, I find much to disagree with, and am amused that his view of President Obama, whose social work improved the lives of so many, is as an outlaw to Catholics. Contrary to what Schall says, there is an objective evaluation of US presidents most recently done in 2017 that engaged 91 presidential historians in a rating and ranking of all presidents. President Obama came out at 12, a high placement for a president just out of office. Normally, it takes time for them to climb. Bill Clinton came in at 15th and George Bush 33rd out of 43 presidents. Lincoln was number 1, Buchanan came in last.

      I find it impossible to begin offering any kind of rebuttal to Schall, as the scope of a president’s work is exhausting to even comprehend, and I find simplistic characterizations that use a few aspects to decide, comprehensively, thumbs up or down generally to be in favor of agenda rather than unbiased knowledge. So I will just go with what the historians say and not take Schall’s ideas as authoritative.

      • sonny says:

        I did read about the rankings of the US presidents and really was disappointed by the results. Two things stood out for me: 1) America is a majority secular state and now merely nominally attached in history to its Judaeo-Christian moorings, 2) the rest of American politics is reflective and oblivious to this fact, especially to the ascendancy of FP Obama whose ascendancy and occupancy of he presidency is on the political legacy of his Islamic background and the communism of Saul Alinsky and at the expense of a few decent politicians and the American Christian church especially the Catholic Church. Regrettably, President Kennedy and the majority of Catholic politicians gave him the blueprint for doing this.

  54. sonny says:

    In retro, this blog installment was a jem: informative & passionate. Well done, Joe.

  55. sonny says:

    Joe, just leaving this note for the would-be philologists in the house. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Note: pusillanimity (from M-W THIRD INTโ€™L DICTIONARY, Unabridged, 1981)
    Etymology: pusillus (very small) + animus (soul, mind, spirit)
    From the Latin โ€œpususโ€ โ€“ small child, diminutive deg. โ€“ โ€œpusillusโ€
    Pusillanimous, adj โ€“ lacking or showing a lack of courage and manly strength and resolution: marked by mean-spirited and contemptible timidity

  56. sonny says:

    For NHerrera with Joe’s permission.

    MISSISSIPPI GAMBLER, 1953, 20:38 minute mark,
    Tyrone Power

    THE MARK OF ZORRO, 1940,
    Tyrone Power vs Basil Rathbone

    Errol Flynn vs Robert Douglas

  57. Manny Bautista says:

    Hi JoeAm

    Seems like your FB page is unreachable; just want to know if you’re okay

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