Monday, September 28, 2009

The Yellows’ balimbing morals

The Inquirer headline of Sept. 24, 2009 barked, “More to follow Romulo,” with a subtitle, “Another GMA man for… (the Yellow candidate),” suggesting Silvestre Bello, who works for Gloria, also supports the supposedly “anti-Gloria” candidate of the ABS-CBN-Inquirer-Ayala elite. Since Bert and Silvestre have been with every Yellow regime, i.e. Cory Aquino and FVR, this headline was not just plain reportage. Looking deeper, it was clearly trying to set the tone for more balimbingan, hence, the line, “more to follow.” Frankly, the Yellow media also did this in 1986 and 2001. It represents what the Yellow crowd of Edsa Uno and Dos deems fundamental to its existence — balimbingan as an ethical good.

In 2001, the Yellows, through a succession of defections from the legitimately-elected government, conspired to mount a coup backed by the Makati and foreign Big Business interests (Impsa, Mirant, and AIG rushing in to consummate their contracts with “sovereign guarantees”). I remember the resignations of then secretaries Gloria Arroyo, Orly Mercado, Mar Roxas, and Mayor Lim, among many others.

Then Defense chief Angelo Reyes was the final defection. (We have testimony, which we can identify in time, that instructions from US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld “turned” Reyes.)

Reyes brought all the other generals to the Edsa treason-rally in an air-conditioned van to ensure that there was no counter-defection to the constitutional order from the military defectors.

The Yellow defectors invariably claim that they act for honor and principle, but then they’re not adverse to expecting or haggling for “rewards” for treason and betrayal. Worse, when they get high and lucrative positions, they hang on despite the worsening performance of the new governments they chose to jump onto. That’s the most nauseating balimbingan of all: Staying on even as the evils they claim to have shunned worsen.

Thus, from 1986 to 1998, we’ve only had more of the same from them: Corruption; economic collapse; aggravating illegal drugs scourge; worsening health, hunger and poverty; and accelerating insurgencies.

Estrada’s two-and-a-half years abated poverty and the insurgencies. But after the Yellows’ Edsa Dos, the crisis accelerated again as they went back to get more appointments, corrupt deals, and businesses (PeaceBonds, Impsa, privatization, etc.)

At first, the Yellows feigned blindness to these worsening conditions. But by the second year after Edsa Dos, the people already saw the gripping truth: The tripling of jueteng and the doubling of electricity and water rates, ad nausea. Life was harder — harder under Aquino than under Marcos; harder under Gloria than Erap.

In 2004’s elections, the Yellows’ darling could not win without massive cheating. Thus, the true opposition leader, President Estrada, helped NBI regional director Samuel Ong expose the “Hello Garci” tapes, making the Yellow Arroyo regime indefensible in the eyes of the people.

But the Yellow crowd knew it had to dissociate, lest its own luster erode with its dummy’s unpopularity. So Frank Drilon and the Hyatt 10 bolted, with the Yellow media building them up. Many others, like Bert Romulo, stayed on until the right moment; timing their defections for the new dummy that is to come.

Take note: All these Yellow Cabinet members have been with the three Yellow regimes — Cory Aquino, FVR, and Gloria Arroyo — and have not batted an eyelash joining one and the other. Now, they will try to be part of the next Yellow government again if plans do not miscarry. They will tout what that they know the people, especially the uninitiated youth, fervently hope for — change.

Yet they represent the continuity of all the failed policies of Western-inspired liberalization, deregulation, privatization and globalization of past administrations.

They are one and the same mafia, covering each others’ back: Kamag-anak Inc. was not investigated by Ramos and Ramos’ Centennial Scam, etc. were not investigated by Gloria. Any new Yellow government will then only “dribble” Gloria’s cases.

Only Estrada went after FVR seriously and only Estrada will go after Gloria’s crimes with the same seriousness.

For 23 years now, this Yellow dynasty and its media have ruled the country. They’ve “convicted” Marcos of crimes aplenty, yet after 900 cases, three Yellow governments, and nearly 30 years, there’s not been one conviction, making the alleged Marcos crimes staple cover-ups for the Yellows’ own graft and corruption.

Estrada refused exile because he knew he was innocent, but they convicted him on trumped-up jueteng and stock manipulation charges to tie him up in legal controversies. They “pardoned” him because the injustice just didn’t stand up to scrutiny. But now, the kangaroo conviction of Erap comes in handy to deflect attention from the Gloria-Yellow conspiracy to block Erap’s hope for a unified opposition and genuine pro-Filipino, pro-poor leadership.

The Philippine mainstream media, controlled by the economic ruling class, abets the media-political culture that sustains their plutocratic control. It is therefore not an instrument of information, education, and enlightenment. Venezuela ’s President Hugo Chavez and Honduras ’ President Manuel Zelaya constantly battle with the same kind.

RP’s mainstream media demonize enemies of the Yellow peril and provide PR spin for the Yellows. Which explains why they are the media for the Yellow candidates today, trying to whip up a bandwagon effect; projecting Romulo and Bello for others to follow; and portraying their kind of betrayal and balimbingan as acts of benevolence.

Secretary Romulo, however, spoiled it by being “kapit tuko” to his post while announcing his support for the Yellows’ candidate. By doing so, he betrayed the truth that to the Yellow crowd, Gloria and this other candidate are no different.

Romulo’s betrayals insult the memory of the first foreign secretary of the Republic, Apolinario Mabini, who chose lonely exile to Guam rather than betray the Philippines for a cushy job with the Americans.

The Yellows demonize anti-Japanese guerilla Marcos while bestow dugong bayani to Japanese collaborators; they demonize Erap while extol Hashim Salamat — all really twisted, balimbing views.

The people at Edsa Tres had one battle cry: “Walang Iwanan,” i.e. to never abandon each other nor their principles, for simply, all these go together. And since loyalty, integrity, and honor all form part of our nationhood, sovereignty, and national dignity, we have to be ready to temporarily give up wealth and power until true democracy, anchored on popular rule, is restored.

Friday, September 25, 2009

FVR, corporatists and the Yellow peril

In March of 2001, at the height of the vilification of President Joseph Estrada, I wrote a column entitled “Investigate Almonte.” It starts thus, “Two weeks ago, news of the explosive revelation from the Dacer parish priest hit the newspapers. Fr. Baldostamon of the Sun Valley parish church came forward to make public overtures he heard from Ramos henchman Joe Almonte to the Dacer children a short time after their father disappeared--that he could negotiate for his release provided Dacer is immediately shipped to the US and the family continues to mourn like he had never been found. Why has NBI chief Reynaldo Wycoco not called in Almonte to find out more about this crucial angle…?

“Fr. Baldostamon’s revelation was brought to the surface in one of the newspaper columns of Bishop Ted Bacani. Last week, I read a letter-to-the-editor from Ramos to Bacani, outlining his response to the Bacani column. It was a very lame letter recalling his expressions of concern for Dacer’s disappearance, citing such inane publications as Customsweek. Readers will recall that it was precisely Ramos’ dubiously premature and hammed up concern, when Dacer’s disappearance was not even an established fact yet, that triggered suspicions about a Ramos hand in the abduction.

“The story is now told to close friends by the Dacer children, Ampy and Sabina, that the Ramos visit to Dacer’s office on that fateful day of the disappearance was very uncharacteristic. In the many years of Dacer and Ramos’ professional dealings, never once did Ramos visit Dacer’s office. But on the day of Dacer’s kidnapping, Ramos did and after only an hour of waiting, he started making it too obvious he was concerned--by calling media about his alarm over Dacer’s disappearance… Gen. Wycoco is obliged to invite both to be interviewed. The story must be officially verified, and Almonte’s side should be looked closely into. The Dacer children must also be asked, to crosscheck the parish priest’s story. But foremost among these actions is this--send a summons to Almonte. This Rasputin of Ramos has some explaining to do.”

To date, neither Ramos nor Almonte has ever been called to account for their strange actions.

A close friend of Dacer told me: “Two days before his reported disappearance, Dacer and I had coffee, complaining that he was being evicted from his Manila Hotel office and he couldn’t update his rent because Ramos (FVR) owed him a six-figure professional fee and wouldn’t pay up.”

The day after that coffee talk, Dacer, with his daughter Ampy, met with Erap in Malacañang and had their gusot ironed out. In an interview with Karen Davila, Cong. Baby Asistio, who was also in that meeting, advised Karen to seek out daughter Ampy to confirm that Erap and Dacer were reconciled over a happy merienda.

Of course, Ramos had his DPAs in Estrada’s offices such as Generals Jose Calimlim and Alexander Aguirre. Since Dacer was among them, FVR could have thought that Dacer turned against him that day and took drastic action.

Almonte came out on two radio stations a few nights ago claiming to be in possession of a Dacer letter stating that if there is any threat against Dacer, it would only come from Ping Lacson or Estrada. But then, if Almonte can say the things that Fr. Baldostamon heard, he could have obtained anything from Dacer, whose whereabouts is really still unknown as there is no corpus delicti to this day.

FVR is a fundamental component of the Yellow peril that brought about the Edsa I and II conspiracies. Today, he is still moving his tentacles--from Gloria’s Lakas-Kampi, to the purported Lakas originals’ fielding of Ebdane, to the Liberal Party’s political operations. As in 1998, where he employed the strategy of confusion to diffuse the votes for easier cheating but failed, he is doing it again in 2009 with better prospects of succeeding, due to the perceived erosion of the masa’s solidarity behind President Estrada.

With FVR are the foreign and local corporatists. Among their latest national swindles: The Transco sale to the China Grid and Monte Oro group (the latter comprising FVR’s men). Naturally, all of them would not want the nation to figure these out because they are hoping for more of the same governance that they got from Gloria to continue enjoying what only the Tribune highlighted recently: “Listed firms’ profits surge 45% to P193-B in 1st half.”

In that report, First Philippine Holdings, the ABS-CBN mother company founded on power distribution, boosted the figures; likewise, privatized Maynilad’s net income soared 145 percent from P945 million to P2.32 billion “primarily due to the impact of an extraordinary gain recognized upon the approval of rebased rates effective last May 4, 2009.” In all, these huge profit increases accrued to only 100 companies at almost two billion per company.

Compare this to how much 90 million Filipinos get per capita from the national budget: P28 billion for health or P300 per capita; P2 billion for school houses, good for only 3,500 units while the shortfall is 40,000; P5.3 billion for housing, good for 254,000 units, of which 200,000 are very low cost units, when the backlog is 4 million units. And such has been the dire picture under two-and-a-half decades of Yellow and corporatist governance.

Then, behind the ABS-CBN-Inquirer-Makati Business Club (MBC) presidential and vice-presidential bets are the gofers of the corporate tyranny in the Philippines: Butch Abad of Batanes, who sponsored the Omnibus Power Bill that became the Epira, which brought us the highest electricity rates in Asia; corporate lawyer Frank Drilon, a remnant of “The Firm;” plus the rich Jesuits’ mascot Chito Gascon, ad nausea.

Thus, a horde of carpetbaggers and balimbings from “civil society” are scrambling to cling to the Yellow wagon again, salivating at the prospects of riding the oligarchy-backed bid after what they deemed as their self-deodorizing attacks against Gloria. But the interconnectedness of the Yellow crowd with the Arroyo regime is clear. The actuations of DFA Secretary Bert Romulo and presidential adviser Silvestre Bello, for instance, show that this crowd sees no fundamental difference between Gloria and the Yellow dummy.

The people should not be fooled. The country will not survive another stint of the jaundiced Yellow peril from the likes of FVR, ABS-CBN, Inquirer, and the MBC. They are now the nation’s Public Enemy No. 1.

(Tune in to 1098AM, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., Monday, Wednesday, and Friday; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 21, 8:15 p.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday; also visit

Monday, September 21, 2009

Persecution and greatness

For daring to stand up to the plutocracy and its foreign overlords; for defying the rule of the hypocrites with his openness and sincerity; and for preserving the nation’s sovereignty by wiping out the secessionists in Mindanao, President Joseph Estrada was unceremoniously ousted in an elite coup more than eight years ago.

Then, for winning the moral struggle over that elite conspiracy and for marching toward full vindication in light of the apologies of erstwhile tormentors such as Cory Aquino and Bishop Antonio Tobias, the elite’s resentment against him simmered even more. Erap’s caring for the poor and the middle class, as well as, his preserving the coffers of the State against the oligarchy’s rapacious profit-taking quite simply dismayed them and their foreign counterparts no end.

Thus, for agitating the nation to seek genuine leadership that brooks no puppetry and for challenging the alternatives by standing for consideration yet again, Estrada is being persecuted today.

The conspiracy that deposed Estrada in 2001 has coalesced once more to thwart the will and wisdom of the people, despite some previous acts of contrition. That conspiracy, whose players hardly paid any respect to the supreme act of humility of their “icon” through words of dismay or claims of downplaying the apology as being made “in jest,” is set to stop Estrada’s crusade again by coalescing with the evil of the worst kind--the fiend of the highest order who figured in the Kuratong Baleleng infamy many years past.

Now I understand what some of Ping Lacson’s most ardent critics have warned people against. Although I’ve never given them much credence before, owing to the goodwill that Ping once had, I began to have serious misgivings about the man ever since he chose not to defend the constitutional order during Edsa II.

From my review of John Campos’ assassination, I now understand why Lacson was tagged in that murder, which also took the life of an innocent waitress, 27-year-old Emily Dumlao. And as I am now convinced that the murder of Dacer witness Jimmy Lopez three weeks ago smacked of a “warning” to the other witnesses, it now seems a trail of blood always follows Lacson wherever he goes.

Yet, despite this, rabid anti-Erap fanatics would rather root for their new man, Lacson, than give the persecuted Estrada, who has but a record of compassion, kindness, and magnanimity, even an ounce of sympathy.

It’s not that Erap really needs it; but their calibrated attacks reflect more on their character than the one they are persecuting. Characters like Rodel Rodis, who persistently dishes out falsehoods from the US --against Estrada, as well as, about the Plaza Miranda bombing to protect his icon in Utrecht , Jose Maria Sison--are just as vile as those who stand idly by while watching the extreme injustice being perpetrated. Political players who similarly savor the unfolding events for whatever reason without a tinge of indignation are just as cruel as the oppressors.

But there must be a greater, more transcendent reason for all this. As German poet, philosopher, historian, and playwright Johann Friedrich Von Schiller once said, “… great people are always subject to persecution and always getting into straits.”

Always chastised by his mother and jailed by Marcos twice, Erap nevertheless ended up being Doña Mary’s favorite and soon got recruited by Marcos for higher office. Always subjected to persecution, the way Cardinal Sin declared “Anybody but Erap” and with the patent injustice from Gloria Arroyo’s kangaroo court, Erap still won in 1998 and graciously accepted Cory’s apology years later. And after being declared a political “washout” repeatedly, Erap still figures in the surveys’ top two berths without much campaigning.

Independent US political thinker Don Mashak, likewise, has something for us to ponder on: “Throughout History, Empires have persecuted the great agitators; Noah, Socrates, Jesus, Columbus, Voltaire, Charles Darwin, Gandhi, the US Founding Fathers, Martin Luther King, Jr. et al.”

Of course, one of the most persecuted Filipinos in history was Jose Rizal; another was Andres Bonifacio, who suffered a persecution more akin to Estrada’s--as theirs came from the ilustrados and the foreign powers.

What then makes for Estrada’s greatness? It was in his persecution years ago by the local political establishment of San Juan that shunned him as a “mere actor,” but which didn’t stop him from winning the TOYM in the field of public administration just the same. It’s in how he inherited one of the most decrepit of cities but shaped up its police force, cemented all its streets, and alleviated squatting through pioneered resettlements.

The mere actor-mayor thus became senator, then vice-president; then as president, made his mark with the largest margin of victory, accomplishing what no president before had done; cleaned up the Mindanao insurgency; integrated the welfare of the masses into governance for the first time; challenged the imperious authority of the Church on such issues as population and the legalization of jueteng; and thumbed down demands by Big Business of sovereign guarantees and public utility rate hikes.

Through it all, Erap has always defied the demands of the powerful in favor of the welfare of the greater majority. This defiance awed and disconcerted the powerful even more when he courageously tackled the threat of incarceration by facing the kangaroo court and winning his moral victory.

If Erap is again facing persecution, it is because he is living up to his greatness; forging ahead with his mission despite all the odds against him. I only hope the nation will have as much mettle and courage to win in this renewed battle against the persecutors of this nation.

(Tune in to 1098AM, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., Monday with Atty. Alan Paguia, Wednesday with former Mayor Jun Simon, and Friday with Ver Eustaquio; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 21, 8:15 p.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday on “Sept. 21 1972: Martial Law and the New Society Revisited;” also visit

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The US hand

The US hand is never absent from any political-economic situation in countries such as the Philippines . To discount it is to be ignorant of history and reality.

The fall of Quirino, Garcia, Marcos, and Estrada were all US-engineered. Col. Edward Lansdale established Namfrel and propped up Magsaysay to trump the nationalist Quirino. The American Manufacturers Association generously funded Macapagal versus the “Filipino First” advocacy of Garcia. The Schultz-Wolfowitz-Casey operations against Marcos culminated in the 1986 Edsa I coup; and similar moves against Estrada by the Rumsfeld-Hank Greenberg group led to the infamy that was Edsa II.

Today, the US is at it again. It grooms the new Yellow dummy while mobilizing local mainstream media and Big Business to ride on “Mister” Panfilo Lacson’s wicked stratagem.

Nationalist Filipinos understand President Estrada’s struggle. They know there is far more at stake than just the elections of 2010. Estrada is the only leader in the horizon who has taken a patriotic stand when he preserved the national territory by vanquishing the MILF in 1999.

Thus, in whatever attack against Estrada’s leadership, any treasonous agreement that yields huge swathes of land (and sea) in the furtherance of a select group’s or foreign power’s objectives always becomes the core issue.

Contrast this to the new Yellow dummy, whose family of Quislings has left a disgraced legacy--from the grandfather’s leadership of the Kalibapi (Kapisanan ng Lingkod ng Bagong Pilipinas) or the pro-Japanese occupation legislature; followed by the father’s betrayal of RP’s effort to reclaim Sabah ; and then, the mother’s contraction of Philippine territorial limits in her so-called “Freedom Constitution.”

To support this new Yellow dummy is to therefore surrender Mindanao to the MILF. But beyond that, it is also to turnover Mindanao, along with Palawan , to the US Congress-backed United States Institute for Peace (USIP) on a silver platter. USIP is, of course, headed by J. Robinson West, the founder of PFC Energy.

The mission statement of West’s company reads: “…strategic advisors in global energy committed to providing innovative insights and solutions that help our clients make quality decisions and succeed… with deep industry knowledge and a profound understanding of the geopolitical landscape.” But what all that euphemism obscures is the use of intelligence and other operations.

PFC Energy can only obtain its goals for western oil and gas companies if there is a compliant Philippine government, which it had found in Gloria Arroyo. But since Arroyo is already too weak politically to enforce the already junked Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain, a new surrogate is needed.

In Lacson’s latest tirade against Estrada, timing is of the essence. It is not to expose any truth but to wage a baseless character assassination, serving both as a distraction from his supposed role in the Dacer-Corbito case, as well as, a monkey wrench on Estrada’s 2010 campaign and the unification of the popular will. Simultaneously, the public is denied media space to examine the new Yellow dummy.

But there is a more sinister angle in the claims that Estrada directly ordered those under Ping to harass the Yuchengco son or that he was involved in rice smuggling: It tries to impress upon the audience that it is Estrada’s practice to undercut the military and civilian chain-of-command.

Lacson is clearly laying the ground for accusing Estrada in the kidnap-murder of Dacer and Corbito. The remaining witnesses will be made not forget the fate of others like Jimmy Lopez and his companion who were recently killed. They can be persuaded to tell the lies that are necessary to get Lacson off the hook and pin Estrada just as well.

Another party that has even more persuasive powers, with an even more pressing interest in Mindanao, is the US government. Since it has Michael Ray Aquino in the palm of its hands in the same way it has Lacson by the balls, it could then offer Michael Ray a way out in exchange for pinning down Estrada. Likewise, the US-based Dacer family is very much within its reach.

With regard to the Yuchengcos, the public wouldn’t get the chance to find out if the son is really into drugs. Their media handlers will keep issues moving so fast that spectators won’t have any more time to look into the details.

The PeaceBonds scam, which the Yuchengcos packaged with civil society group CodeNGO in the wake of Edsa II, was a P10-billion loan ten years ago that the people will have to repay to the tune of P35 billion today..

The Yuchengcos’ Pacific Educational Plans racket, meanwhile, had duped thousands of policy planholders; yet mainstream media is not focusing on this. Neither will they headline the PLDT officials’ announcement that no pressure was exerted on the sale of PTIC shares and that they, in fact, jacked up the price upon the Yuchengcos’ request.

Lacson’s tirades by themselves signify nothing; same with all the black propaganda of mainstream and Internet media against Estrada. What is of true significance is the power behind these pawns. From Lansdale’s mascot to the present dummy, the US government has always pushed hard for its candidates from the dummy pedigrees because that power has always assaulted the sovereignty and patrimony of this nation.

Inasmuch as taxi and jeepney drivers love their pro-masa man, there is still that subliminal lure from the media campaigns of ABS-CBN, Inquirer, Mon del Rosario et al. that package their bet “like a virgin”--uncomplicated, canned, and ready to eat tinapa for free.

But once the people bite, two years down the road, they’ll discover--as they did after Cory, FVR and Arroyo--that from one worst fire, they’ve been thrown to hell yet again. That has been the case since 1986 to 2009. There is just no end to the downward spiral as long as the US and the oligarchs rule with their puppets and dummies.

(Tune in to 1098AM, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 7’s Talk News TV, Tuesday, 8:15 p.m. to 9 p.m. on “Sept. 21, Martial Law Revisited” with the FDC, Party-list Rep. Jonathan de la Cruz, and Tribune columnist Rod Kapunan; also visit

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Yellows’ game plan

The ABS-CBN-Inquirer-Ayala candidate, otherwise known as the “Yellow dummy,” is now the subject of a communications plan that seeks to cover up the fact that he’s really a political non-entity.

To date, this plan is being taken to a few basic directions. One, distract the public’s attention from the only presidential candidate who has the experience, a clear national agenda, and one who’s clearly gaining ground at the homestretch. Two, pit “the Palace” against this non-entity as if he were Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s chief nemesis, through items such as last Friday’s Inquirer headline, “Palace to Noynoy: Be a Man.” Three, maintain the focus on Villar at all cost as a secondary candidate so as to obviate the presence and momentum of President Joseph Estrada. Erap will, of course, be covered only when negative developments come up, such as that contrived Ping Lacson bomb of a tell-all. But they would have to keep doing all these till election day, lest their dummy’s empty shell be exposed.

Then, the Inquirer’s Sunday headline, which attempts to distance the Aquino family from its Hacienda Luisita shares, is a step to remove one of the major PR banes off the Yellows’ cacique candidate’s back. In fact, according to a veteran financial sleuth I spoke to, Danding Cojuangco has already acquired Cory Aquino’s Luisita shares lock, stock and barrel.

Nevertheless, as the call for justice looms for all Hacienda Luisita massacre victims, this will forever haunt the non-entity, who at Club Filipino even had the gall to juxtapose “justice” with “just-tiis” in his speech. But beyond this, what true opposition forces should highlight is Cory’s swift and easy turnover of Meralco to one of the Yellow dummy’s biggest oligarchic backers, which has led to the most expensive power rates in Asia today. And that is the real travesty!

Going back to their plan, it seems, too, that aside from the other oligarchs, the Cojuangcos themselves are consolidating for their blue-blooded candidate. I am told that Channel 5 has just fallen into line.

Meanwhile, I’m expecting false surveys to come out soon, showing a runaway figure for the dummy in hopes of creating a bandwagon. But, this time, a band might be there from the Yellow media’s end with no wagon in sight.

The current combined tri-media “shock and awe” of the invading Yellow forces is taking its toll on the more rational discussion of issues and alternatives for 2010. That’s why genuine thinkers must put up with the unrelenting struggle in this war for truth and genuine democracy. For us, there’s simply no retreat, no surrender.

We received enthusiastic responses to last Friday’s column on the true Aquino legacy--from a grandfather who volunteered to head the pro-Japanese Kalibapi (Kapisanan ng Lingkod ng Bagong Pilipinas), to the betrayal of Sabah, to the twin massacres that marked the Cory era, and the “massacre” of electricity consumers.

Many others are fighting back. I had two of them on my GNN program which will be shown Tuesday evening--former Gov. Homobono Adaza of Misamis Oriental and Bulletin columnist Eric Espina, both serious students of history. Bono has written a book on Philippine leaders and finds Cory as the most incompetent; while Eric brought E. Glick’s book, “Sainthood Postponed,” which was a book that Cory had de-shelved from the bookstores to be kept out of the public eye.

One really cannot see valuable historical truth while allowing even token genuflection at the yellow ribbon because even a hint of respect for it reinforces a myriad of lies in the service of oligarchic and corporatocratic exploitation. Inversely, one cannot even perfunctorily accede to the demonization of Marcos just to avoid the hassle of being tagged pro-Marcos without reinforcing all the rabid lies of the Yellow crowd and the oligarchs behind them.

Marcos was both good and bad--a culprit and a victim--like most Filipino leaders who had to navigate the treacherous politics of a land under the shadow of an evil global empire. But in the end, Marcos was a nationalist--cutting short the US bases’ lease and demanding rent; while Cory in 1991 marched in the rain to the Senate to appeal for their extension.

ABS-CBN and the Inquirer still try to raise the old formula of the Marcos bogey with their candidate’s promise to recover the “Marcos wealth.” Well, they tried but failed. They didn’t follow it up because the non-issue no longer struck a chord with the people. What keeps striking, though, is the “Kamag-anak Inc.” tune. That’s why they are keeping Peping Cojuangco out of the way.

Most left-wing or “progressive” activist movements in the Philippines are witting allies of right-wing oligarchs in perpetuating the Marcos bogeyman. (Satur Ocampo and Teddy Casino are going for Villar, the real estate usurper, while Etta Rosales and her puppies are gunning for the Yellow dummy.) This is the main reason for the failure of real ideological alternatives in the country. Their confused alliances, which they think can aid them in their objectives, as when Rosales supported Gloria in 2001 and 2004, confuses the nation and leaves it bereft of ideas and alternatives.

Today, only Estrada stands out with a clear message--pro-poor, nationalist and patriotic (particularly on the MILF issue).

Likewise, there are plenty of disinformation going around, as when Manny Portes said his non-entity of a candidate was endorsed by Bongbong and Imee Marcos. Fellow columnist Jonathan de la Cruz also called to ask if what’s being circulated in some blogs is true--that I’ve gone over to the dummy’s side; to which I said, “When hell freezes over.”

This early, it seems, we can already witness how they’ll do anything to nab power the way Gloria Arroyo does.

(Tune in to 1098AM, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 7’s Talk News TV, Tuesday, 8:15 p.m. to 9 p.m. on “The Battle of the Legacies: Marcos, Aquino, Estrada” with former Gov. Homobono Adaza and columnist Eric Espina; also visit

Friday, September 11, 2009

The new Yellow dummy

The color yellow is said to represent cowardice. Such is true of the Yellow crowd that conspired in 2001 to topple the popularly-elected leader who tried to protect the nation from the oligarchy’s predatory profit-seeking. Supported by the likes of ABS-CBN, Inquirer, and Big Business establishments of Ayala Avenue , this Yellow crowd, proudly calling itself “civil society,” later on earned the moniker “evil society” after the nation bore the brunt of their abusive reign. Epitomized by their erstwhile puppet Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, these people fast-tracked approval of onerous power projects; privatized energy production, water utilities, and expressways, thus, jacking up Filipinos’ cost-of-living horrendously; and saddled us with the greatest debt surge, in the trillions, since Cory Aquino’s seven-year P400-billion debt post-Edsa I.

In 1986, these Yellows, backed by the US corporate oligarchy, deposed the besieged former President Ferdinand Marcos, then gave away the media assets held by the state. ABS-CBN and dzMM, for instance, were taken back by the Lopezes, even when their financing came from the Meralco power firm that was similarly turned over for nothing. Marcos’ Daily Express print media domination was likewise replaced by the Inquirer-Philippine Star tandem that has received advertising support from local and transnational Big Business ever since.

When Aquino took power, she had supposedly restored electoral democracy. But what actually happened, and what’s not being told, is that she merely turned over public utility assets from the state back to the oligarchs, thereby entrenching their political and economic domination of our land and its democratic institutions.

What the nation suffered under Mrs. Aquino and her anointed, Gen. Fidel Ramos, were crises upon crises in the power sector, which profited the largest generator-importing crony family at that time and also opened the way for Ramos’ infamous emergency take-or-pay contracts with Independent Power Producers (IPPs). As a consequence, the nation was made to pay for power that has not even been used, due to the notorious Purchased Power Agreements (PPAs) that enjoyed sovereign guarantees.

Meanwhile, privatization of our water utilities proceeded posthaste in favor of the Ayalas and Lopezes, and water rates zoomed ten times. As the people suffered, they decided in 1998 to rally behind a leader of their own, prompting Cory’s Rasputin, the late Jaime Cardinal Sin, to issue his “Anybody but Erap” call to the faithful.

Still, Erap won overwhelmingly. And a regime of restrained debt amortization, increased social spending for the poor, and self-reliant economics ensued. Most of all, President Joseph Estrada put a stop to all sovereign guarantees.

And since precipitate power and water rate hikes were refused outright, much to the chagrin of the oligarchs, and with the US Embassy intensely miffed by Erap’s ban on sovereign guarantees, as well as, his decisive wipe-out of the US’ MILF surrogates in Mindanao, a campaign of vilification through the oligarchs’ captive tri-media came underway. Bombings were contrived by police elements allied to the Yellows, who hid behind alleged Muslim terrorists. Then, Cory called on Estrada to step down in January 2001, culminating in Arroyo’s unconstitutional ascent to power.

Although Cory apologized to Erap nine years later, the damage to the nation her error has caused is one that a mere apology can never repair.

With the 2010 polls close at hand, Estrada, in pursuing his sense of destiny, began to ascend to the top two ranks of the main poll surveys, the SWS and Pulse Asia. Competing against him is a renegade Edsa II stalwart who had spun off his own bid with the secret backing of Gloria Arroyo. The dyed-in-the-wool, blue blood candidate, meanwhile, had long been black and blue in the surveys, slipping badly to fifth place. Then Cory Aquino died.

ABS-CBN and the Inquirer drummed up the dirge 24/7; the Ayalas sent down employees to line the streets; and Filipinos who are suckers for funerals and “uzis” brought in more “uzis.” Eureka ! A perfect opportunity for a new blue blood to take up the cudgels for the elite was concocted.

Never mind if this Lopez-Ayala-Prieto candidate was congressman for nine years and produced only five House bills, of which none was passed into law. Never mind if, as senator, he only had the renaming of streets as accomplishment. He didn’t have anything to say on the CARP either, maybe because of his family’s Hacienda Luisita embroilment that saw 14 farmers killed. And this non-entity suddenly becomes material for the presidency?

He is built up as a patriot, as it says in his Web site: “Dugong Bayani.” But “Dugong Traydor” is more like it with a grandfather who volunteered to head the Japanese occupation government Kalibapi and a father who betrayed the Philippines ’ efforts to retake Sabah . Still, ABS-CBN, the Inquirer, the Ayalas et al. can turn black into white, traitors into heroes, and even make an opposition hitchhiker into “the” opposition candidate.

To wit, the Inquirer had the idiocy to publish this story yesterday: “Erap busts opposition’s hopes for unity.” This, despite a long line of contrary historical evidence:

Estrada, through the Pwersa ng Masa (PnM) Coalition, shepherded the opposition senatorial slate in 2001 against Gloria’s “13-0” People Power Coalition, winning six seats. In 2004, Estrada’s Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) became the backbone of FPJ’s candidacy which won but was cheated, as admitted by Gloria in her 2005 “I am sorry” spiel. In 2007, Estrada cobbled the Genuine Opposition (GO) slate from detention in Tanay, Rizal, and won eight out of twelve slots, clobbering Arroyo’s Team Unity. Given these, who is the rightful opposition leader today?

The Yellow crowd’s dummy was only a hanger-on in the GO slate, owing to his late mother’s request. So even with ABS-CBN and the Inquirer on his side, the people should still strive for final emancipation. Estrada must hammer on the message that his struggle is the people’s fight against these exploiters.

(Tune in to 1098AM, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 21, Tuesday, 8:15 p.m. to 9 p.m.. on “Comparing the Marcos, Aquino, and Erap Legacies” with ex-Gov. Bono Adaza and columnist Eric Espina; also visit

Monday, September 7, 2009

From coconuts to other ‘nuts’

On Tuesday, Sept. 8, 9 a.m., various organizations of coconut farmers, processors, and dealers will converge at the newly-opened Coconut House at the Quezon Memorial Circle . Under the aegis of the Coconut Forum, led by organizations such as the Coconut Industry for Reform Movement (COIR), Virgin Coconut Oil Producers (VCOP), Cooperative of Virgin Coconut Producers and Traders (COVCOPT), this initiative is being supported by many veteran champions of the coconut industry’s democratization. They include: Bobby Tañada and Oscar Santos; Reps. Leonardo Montemayor, Erin Tañada, Proceso Alcala, and other legislators from coconut-growing provinces; plus government officials such as Danny Coronacion of the Coconut Industry Investment Fund (CIIF) and Oscar Garin, administrator of the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA), who will be represented by his information chief Thelma Tolentino.

One of the main issues driving this sector to sound the alarm is the impending conversion of the CIIF’s San Miguel Corporation (SMC) shares from “common and voting” to “preferred and non-voting” status, which would result in the coconut farmers’ loss of control and participation over their investments in the said corporation.

Although the SMC management today is offering higher dividends in exchange for this conversion, no one can really rest assured since any earning levels will all depend on the performance of the company’s stocks. A food and beverage conglomerate that is now running amuck, investing in politically-tainted and non-food interests, cannot offer assurances of safety and security or the long-term yield of its shares.

The CIIF is supposed to be only for “coconut industry investment” but that is certainly not where the SMC board is putting this money into. As I understand, a separate fund is to be created after the conversion. Still, the problem is the absence of any guidelines as to where the money should be placed.

The coconut industry sector has the potential to lift the Philippine national economy out of the woods. It can give 25 percent of our people meaningful livelihood once it increases the value added to its production by up to 10 times. To be done through “integrated processing,” measures range from instituting import substitution of dairy products, amounting to $1 billion a year; to exporting high value oils and industrial chemicals; to replacing chemical imports for the detergent industry; and exporting other pharma-, nutri- and cosme-ceuticals.

Mr. Joey Faustino of COIR, the main grassroots coconut farmers’ group, has written a paper in August 2009 entitled, “Where have the coconut levy shares in San Miguel gone?” It states, “Today the real coconut farmers are again being duped into an out-of-court settlement to the advantage of the same privileged few despite a victory in the Courts. And while court decisions are stalled or left out for some political compromise, the sequestered coco levy fund assets appear to slowly dissipate or disappear under layers and layers of corporate maneuverings… Action is yet to be seen both from the House committee and the PCGG. Meanwhile, where has the ‘Cojuangco’ block gone to by now? That too was funded by the coconut levies with contributions coming from the millions of already impoverished coconut farmers.”

Another interesting issue to be raised on Tuesday is the “other levy” on coconut. Imposed by the US since the time of Quezon, from which money was used to build Quezon City and open up Mindanao, this levy, or what’s officially called an “excise tax” by the US, was pushed because it feared the influx of low-cost coconut oil and milk into its market; thus, multiplying to 200 percent the price of our coconut oil exports.

Save for the masked inducement, an ominous condition imposed on the Philippine government’s use of this excise tax was that it “would not be… for the development of the coconut industry.” Even then, almost 100 years ago, the US already knew that our coconut industry was the key to developing an independent, strong Philippine economy. Maybe this is why even today, a prominent “Kano” in our midst continues to stunt the industry.

As I started writing this column, Linggoy Alcuaz informed me of Sen. Ping Lacson’s supposed privileged speech about President Joseph Estrada on Tuesday. Of course, the Dacer-Corbito case immediately came to mind. Based on his information, however, including some from Sandra Cam, Linggoy said that it will just be one among other issues Lacson would be raising. So my reaction was, “He’s nuts. Character talaga itong si Ping .” The fact that the Dacer family itself is pinpointing Ping really settles much of the question; and that’s why he has to try very hard to distract the public. Coupled with his call for Erap to withdraw in favor of Noynoy, it’s clear that Ping is doing the exact same thing as in 2004--divide the anti-Gloria opposition.

These people advising Erap to withdraw are losing sight of the fact that this will surely cause the opposition to lose up to 30 percent of the masa vote to Noli de Castro. Well, that’s probably their real agenda. Those egging Noynoy to gun for the top post for should listen well to the vast majority who are saying, “Musmusin pa siya.” They should push instead for his merger with Erap to make the opposition unbeatable, even with the administration’s use of automated cheating. Cory Aquino in 2007 sought Erap to include Noynoy in the opposition’s senatorial ticket. She later publicly apologized to Erap for Edsa II. If these aren’t enough food for thought for Erap’s detractors, then I don’t know what else can pierce through their thick skulls.

After mulling about Lacson in a similar way, it dawned on me that here we see not only a character but a “police character,” who’s as devious as the rest of the devious civil society can be.

(Tune in to 1098AM, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 7, Tuesday, 8:15 p.m. to 9 p.m. and on the TVU Internet Channel 61713 on “Sept. 11, WTC Attack/Noynoy for Prexy or VP” with Linggoy Alcuaz and Manny Portes; also visit

Friday, September 4, 2009

Magdalo, Noynoy, Erap

As I write this piece, supporters of the Magdalo party-list group are gathering in front of the Comelec for its official registration. That’s one party to watch: Young, energetic, visionary. Though still in need of some guidance in ideological discourse, this is definitely one of the best things that can happen to our national politics. The Magdalo’s party-list candidates are still to be known; but for the Senate, it already has BrigGen. Danilo Lim; for the congressional seats of Taguig and Cebu , it has Lts. James Layug and Ashley Acedillo, respectively; and for Sipalay City Mayor, it has Lt. Gary Alejano. As I await the Magdalo’s party-list campaign materials, I now have the red, blue, and yellow Danny Lim stickers all over my car, in conjunction with his stickers and pocket calendars, which I’m eagerly distributing in the four public markets I go to.

While the Magdalo’s political leaders are still young and new, no one can say the same for Sen. Noynoy Aquino or the other so-called “young” leaders of the Liberal Party (LP).

Capitalizing on a well-attended funeral, this new presidential bet of the LP, being billed as non-trapo and, as Conrad de Quiros claims, “one deserving to be president because he does not seek it”--as if there’s a public clamor for him to run--is the product of the party’s political somersault in junking its failed presidential hopeful in the person of Mar Roxas. How did this come about?

First of all, the LP is one of the two grand old traditional parties in the Philippines , the other being the Nacionalista Party, and both are rooted in the incipient parties from the Commonwealth era eight decades ago.

It’s not only that these two are the oldest political parties, but their leaders whose names span generations--Roxas, Aquino, Cojuangco--are as old as those of disreputable American and Japanese colonial collaborators and exploitative elites, whose wealth was either stolen from the Philippine Revolution’s coffers or from war reparations, the latter of which was salted to New York when the LP had one of its own sitting as president.

Decades of wealth and power and control over media may have covered up a lot of these seamy beginnings, but we should not allow these to be forgotten. The other traditional party, the Nacionalista, while not having an old elite-sounding name heading it, nonetheless has a nouveau riche leadership that is as corrupt as the LP’s.

The LP is alive today because this “new” candidate supposedly brings new hope; which, if I may add, also brings back a lot of old, bad blood. Hence, the so-called Kamag-anak Inc. is now abuzz. I’ve just heard from my friends in the banking sector that the former organizer of the Northern Alliance has been visiting bank presidents, soliciting funds for this new bet. The Northern Alliance, as you may recall, controlled jueteng operations in Luzon during Cory Aquino’s incumbency. Can the reader guess who this kamag-anak is?

Another kamag-anak, who similarly ran jueteng in his turf, even egged Sonia Roco to come out using her paper party, Aksyon Demokratiko (which has fewer members than a taxi can hold), to support this new candidate.

Meanwhile, other rah-rah boys who aren’t kamag-anak but just as bad also have tarnished records. The LP’s Butch Abad, for one, pushed the Epira power privatization that has wreaked havoc in our lives and national economy.

The supposedly intellectual writers of “civil society,” presumably revolutionary in the spirit of the extreme Left like Conrad de Quiros, simply ignore the facts about the political parties and candidates they are supporting. That goes as well for Billy Esposo, in previously going for the Nacionalistas’ Manny Villar until he faltered in the surveys.

Right now, they are all going gung-ho for this new LP bet (who’s still praying for divine guidance, as if the public is yet to know what his God’s “advice” would be) without facing these issues squarely. If a real providential adviser were to be consulted, the correct advice would be for him to join forces with President Joseph Estrada and run as his vice president to overcome the automated election system’s cheating and ensure a change in the next government. But that would only be over the dead bodies of Kamag-anak Inc.

For sure, they are praying for Estrada’s disqualification by the Supreme Court (SC). But since 62 percent of the people surveyed by Pulse Asia already believe Estrada will be allowed to run, the SC simply cannot ignore this. Those who are still unwilling to accept this most basic democratic tenet should read carefully what Dean De la Paz of the BusinessMirror quoted from noted US jurist, Justice Thomas McIntyre Cooley: “The Constitution does not derive its force from the convention which framed it, but from the people who ratified it. The intent to be arrived at is that of the people. ”

President Estrada represents wisdom, compassion, vision, and experienced leadership. Most of all, he embodies a set of ideals for the country’s flag and its poor, which he hopes to achieve through practical, determined means. His vision: Food security and agricultural self-reliance; an end to sovereign guarantees; debt renegotiation; commissioning the AFP for a massive infrastructure campaign; professionalizing the cabinet as he did in 1998; legalizing jueteng to utilize its revenues for the public good; an end to the NPA insurgency through forceful negotiations; and allowing only one flag to fly in Mindanao--the Philippine flag.

With Erap, there’s no more learning curve, no more compromise, and no more ambition--just getting things done for the good of the nation.

(Tune in to 1098AM, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 7, Tuesday, 8:15 p.m. to 9 p.m. and on the TVU Internet Channel 61713 on “Sept. 11 WTC Attack: A False Flag Operation;” also visit