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EDITORIALS & OPINIONS OF THE WEEK:
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FROM PHILSTAR

EDITORIAL - LONG ROAD TO FREEDOM
[The nation celebrates 30 years of freedom today. If there are Filipinos who do not understand what there is to celebrate, it is up to the people power generation not only to explain what was won and how tortuous it was to regain freedom, but also to work harder to show that democracy works.]


FEBRUARY 25 -If Filipino voters are showing a strong preference for candidates with authoritarian tendencies plus the only son of a dictator, one of the reasons has to be the perception that democracy is not working for the country. Those who suffered during the oppressive days of one-man rule can only shake their heads and sigh that people who support politicians with an authoritarian bent don’t know what monster they are trying to revive. Beyond warning that Filipinos should be careful what they wish for, however, those who want to nurture hard-won freedoms should address the public frustrations that are giving rise to a longing for discipline and the kind of leadership that gets things done and brings peace and order. If there is public support for short cuts to justice including summary executions, it is because the administration of justice is notoriously slow, inefficient and, as surveys and studies have indicated, often riddled with corruption. If the idea of a firm hand in government is resonating, it is because the delivery of many basic services has been found wanting. Only those who struggled to put an end to authoritarian rule can understand that the success of the people power revolution in 1986 was akin to a miracle. Rebuilding a free country from the ashes of a dictatorship, however, requires a lot of heavy lifting long after the revolutionary euphoria has worn off. Today, three decades after the miracle of EDSA, many democratic institutions still need strengthening. Because of the failure to convict and punish those who plundered the nation’s coffers during the Marcos regime, corruption has become firmly entrenched at all levels of government, from penny-ante extortion to large-scale shakedowns and the collection of billions in kickbacks. The nation celebrates 30 years of freedom today. If there are Filipinos who do not understand what there is to celebrate, it is up to the people power generation not only to explain what was won and how tortuous it was to regain freedom, but also to work harder to show that democracy works.THE FULL EDITORIAL.

ALSO: By Ana Marie Pamintuan - The dictator


FEBRUARY 29 -By Ana Marie Pamintuan The candidate who has the makings of a dictator is not the late dictator’s son and namesake, but the one who happily admits in public that, yes, he is a diktador: Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte. No one can be sure how much of that is just campaign bluster, since in the same breath, Duterte says he does not need to impose martial law, and will simply enforce the law to rid the nation of criminality within three to six months of assuming the presidency. It’s the most focused promise in this presidential campaign, and it’s the first time that anyone is seeking the nation’s highest post on a platform of benevolent dictatorship (with a promise to kill, kill, kill the bad guys). But more important than the promise is the perception, at least among certain sectors, that the mayor can match the tough words with action. According to surveys, a significant number of Filipinos like Duterte’s message and believe he can deliver. Despite being a reluctant latecomer to the race, the mayor has registered a strong, respectable showing in the surveys. Part of the reason has to be his other promise, again distinct among all the presidential candidates: an unequivocal support for Charter change – not just an amendment for economic reforms, but a complete rewrite of the Constitution to include a change in the system of government. Duterte is openly calling for federalism, which is also his answer to the long-festering conflict in Mindanao. He has given hope to those who believe a parliamentary system headed by a prime minister chosen by peers would be better for the country. I believe our pre-Internet, pre-iPhone, prehistoric Constitution is ripe for an overhaul, but because the same political clans and characters are likely to be represented in parliament, I have my doubts about how much change is possible. READ MORE...

ALSO: Caricatured  “Edsa Revolution”
[Stop blaming our children for not appreciating the Edsa Revolution. They know better than us.The Edsa Uprising has since been colored deeper and deeper yellow.The caricatured “Edsa Revolution” has become the means by which one distinct oligarchic faction excludes the rest of the political field from equal access to the state. As with all exclusionary politics, this self-serving use of Edsa will implode.]


FEBRUARY 25 -By Alex Magno Stop blaming our children for not appreciating the Edsa Revolution. They know better than us. I was at Edsa 30 years ago in the company of communards from Diliman. My firstborn was a toddler and my second was eagerly waiting to be born. But that mattered little the moment the tanks at the Ortigas junction revved their engines and threatened to plow through the crowd. We locked arms and prepared to stand our ground. For 14 years until that day, I was an activist fighting the dictatorship. I was treated to the hospitality, and tender mercies, of the detention camps. I lost so many friends who did not think it foolhardy to put their lives on the line for something as abstract as Freedom. Scientists now tell us that men in their twenties are at the peak of their powers. It is the period when genius flowers, when creativity is boundless. For those of my generation, our twenties were spent playing cat-and-mouse games with the secret police. The best of our generation lived short lives, many dying in excruciating pain. The springtime of our geniuses was spent surviving the repression. We read events intently. We anticipated the surprises of politics. We could peer down a crowded street and instinctively know something was amiss. We would look a stranger in the eye and, in an instant, decide to entrust our lives to him. READ MORE...

ALSO: Edsa in 30 years failed the Filipino people!


FEBRUARY 25 -By Bobit Avila ...........First of all, we must accept and admit that Filipinos do not know how to fix our problems. Come now…we don’t have to reinvent the wheel, as there are many ideas from all over the world that we could copy. Yet we don’t copy them. That’s because the Cory regime created the 1987 Constitution, which was so kilometric and totally disregarded by our lawmakers… it is nothing but a joke! This constitution brought back the hated oligarchy into the national scene and they came back with a vengeance. Worse of all, the unlamented cronies of the Marcos Dictatorship also returned and joined the politicians of today. So now it is the Marcoses who are returning to power. This is why my mentor and I, the late Manong Max Soliven would often write about EDSA that we removed Ali Baba, but kept the forty thieves in power. Yes… by the forty thieves, we meant those people who are in the Senate and in Congress… many of whom should by now be indicted by the Office of the Ombudsman for the misuse of the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) and the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP). 30-years after the EDSA Revolt, we now face with the prospect of having the Marcoses return to Malacañang with a vengeance, I don’t blame the Marcoses. I blame the very people who threw them out and became little dictators themselves. The Marcos Dictatorship eventually evolved into the Aquino Regime’s having all three branches of the government in his pocket, which is to stay the least a form of dictatorship. This is why we want change! ..........READ FROM THE BEGINNING...

ALSO: By Federico Pascual Jr - EDSA just a revolt, not a ‘Revolution’


FEBRUARYA 28 -By Federico D. Pascual Jr
IN POSTSCRIPT, we have always referred to the bloodless upheaval that shook the country in February 1986 and forced then President Ferdinand E. Marcos to flee into exile as the “EDSA Revolt” – not the “EDSA Revolution.” Even when using quoted material, we feel uneasy calling that phenomenon a revolution because it was not really that. A more proper tag, also catchy, may even be “EDSA People Power,” the name that caught the imagination of the world and inspired similar upheavals elsewhere. In Postscript, we also habitually say “martial RULE” – not “martial LAW” – to describe the 13-year repressive regime that many of its victims decried as in wanton violation of law and decency despite the care that Marcos the astute lawyer took in laying the legal basis for what he was about to do. We are bringing out this point about names, because during the 30th commemoration of EDSA, a confetti of varicolored political labels rained on us – revolution, revolt, rebellion, uprising, putsch, mutiny, coup d’etat, et cetera, and we are pressed to differentiate. The dictionary tells us that a Revolution, often attended by armed violence, radically changes the way a country is governed, usually installing a substantially different (not necessarily better) political system. But when a Revolt is staged, while there is also a degree of violence against the installed authority, the resulting changes are limited in scope, effect and duration. What happened in February 1986 on EDSA and its political ripple effects on the rest of the country was just a Revolt, not a Revolution. (Those who disagree can continue to imagine it to be a full-blown revolution. No problem.)  A revolution, of course, has a romantic ring to it and brings a sense of pride to the instigators and a feeling of satisfaction to those who benefit from it. But those who insist in massaging a lizard into a crocodile better be careful with that yawning jaw. READ MORE...


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS HERE:

EDITORIAL - Long road to freedom

MANILA, FEBRUARY 29, 2016 (PHILSTAR) February 25, 2016 - If Filipino voters are showing a strong preference for candidates with authoritarian tendencies plus the only son of a dictator, one of the reasons has to be the perception that democracy is not working for the country.

Those who suffered during the oppressive days of one-man rule can only shake their heads and sigh that people who support politicians with an authoritarian bent don’t know what monster they are trying to revive. Beyond warning that Filipinos should be careful what they wish for, however, those who want to nurture hard-won freedoms should address the public frustrations that are giving rise to a longing for discipline and the kind of leadership that gets things done and brings peace and order.

If there is public support for short cuts to justice including summary executions, it is because the administration of justice is notoriously slow, inefficient and, as surveys and studies have indicated, often riddled with corruption. If the idea of a firm hand in government is resonating, it is because the delivery of many basic services has been found wanting.

Only those who struggled to put an end to authoritarian rule can understand that the success of the people power revolution in 1986 was akin to a miracle. Rebuilding a free country from the ashes of a dictatorship, however, requires a lot of heavy lifting long after the revolutionary euphoria has worn off.

Today, three decades after the miracle of EDSA, many democratic institutions still need strengthening. Because of the failure to convict and punish those who plundered the nation’s coffers during the Marcos regime, corruption has become firmly entrenched at all levels of government, from penny-ante extortion to large-scale shakedowns and the collection of billions in kickbacks.

The nation celebrates 30 years of freedom today. If there are Filipinos who do not understand what there is to celebrate, it is up to the people power generation not only to explain what was won and how tortuous it was to regain freedom, but also to work harder to show that democracy works.


The dictator SKETCHES By Ana Marie Pamintuan (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 29, 2016 - 12:00am 0 3 googleplus0 0

The candidate who has the makings of a dictator is not the late dictator’s son and namesake, but the one who happily admits in public that, yes, he is a diktador: Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.

No one can be sure how much of that is just campaign bluster, since in the same breath, Duterte says he does not need to impose martial law, and will simply enforce the law to rid the nation of criminality within three to six months of assuming the presidency.

It’s the most focused promise in this presidential campaign, and it’s the first time that anyone is seeking the nation’s highest post on a platform of benevolent dictatorship (with a promise to kill, kill, kill the bad guys). But more important than the promise is the perception, at least among certain sectors, that the mayor can match the tough words with action. According to surveys, a significant number of Filipinos like Duterte’s message and believe he can deliver.

Despite being a reluctant latecomer to the race, the mayor has registered a strong, respectable showing in the surveys. Part of the reason has to be his other promise, again distinct among all the presidential candidates: an unequivocal support for Charter change – not just an amendment for economic reforms, but a complete rewrite of the Constitution to include a change in the system of government.

Duterte is openly calling for federalism, which is also his answer to the long-festering conflict in Mindanao. He has given hope to those who believe a parliamentary system headed by a prime minister chosen by peers would be better for the country.

I believe our pre-Internet, pre-iPhone, prehistoric Constitution is ripe for an overhaul, but because the same political clans and characters are likely to be represented in parliament, I have my doubts about how much change is possible.

READ MORE...

For the same reason, no one can tell if empowering local officials through federalism would be any better than the current system. As a lawmaker once commented on a funding controversy, it’s like transferring people’s money from one set of thieves to another.

A shift to a parliamentary system may also lead to the abolition of term limits. Optimists see an upside to this: politicians no longer have to go through the zarzuela of making their spouses and children replace them once they reach their term limit. This, of course, is no guarantee that political clans can moderate their greed for power. We are likely to end up with a politician keeping his post all the way to the grave, while his spouse and children and mistresses and children and cousins and nephews seek to occupy every available position within their bailiwicks.

Still, there are people who are hoping that Charter change will lift economic restrictions to improve the investment climate. Cha-cha may also curb what President Aquino has described as “judicial overreach,” which has been unhealthy for our justice system.

And the presidential candidate who is seen to be solidly pro-Charter change is the Davao mayor. Duterte’s supporters think he not only can get Cha-cha moving but also make the changes work, because of his firm hand.

Duterte’s handlers should take a leaf from the Singaporeans’ book. Criticized for authoritarian tendencies, the Singaporeans counter that there’s a difference between strong-arm rule and strong (and efficient) governance.

Filipinos’ support for Duterte, the self-confessed dictator, and his kindred spirits such as Panfilo Lacson indicates a yearning not necessarily for authoritarian rule but for a firm, steady hand at the steering wheel – to borrow a metaphor from the first presidential debate.

* * *

The candidate who used the metaphor, the Liberal Party’s Mar Roxas, has drawn flak from his rivals. Sen. Grace Poe, reacting to Roxas’ obvious reference to her as too green for the presidency, said it’s better to have an inexperienced driver moving the vehicle along than an experienced one who can’t get the car out of neutral. Duterte has also pounced on Roxas’ reputation for being Mr. Teka-Teka. Roxas, who has chosen negative campaigning as his path to the presidency, should expect the counter-attacks.

The teka-teka attitude is one of the reasons why Duterte’s message of strong governance is resonating in this campaign. Problems linked to indecisiveness, such as the MRT mess, atrocious traffic, criminality and undelivered license plates are making Filipinos toy again with the idea of iron discipline.

It is why Duterte enjoys respectable ratings, and why the only son of Ferdinand and Imelda has surged to a tie for No. 1 in the race for the vice presidency.

* * *

It’s unfortunate that Sen. Bongbong Marcos’ surge is now being seen as the principal reason for the current Marcos-bashing by daang sarado, burying the deep significance of the people power revolt in our national life.

Yesterday I attended a tribute to the late US Ambassador Stephen Bosworth in Forbes Park, during which speakers recalled his role in the momentous events that culminated in the flight of the Marcoses into exile 30 years ago this month.

“We gathered at EDSA,” people power hero Fidel Ramos said, “because we wanted freedom and we were tired of what our nation had become.”

Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario, one of the organizers of the event, was among those who paid tribute to the American diplomat.

“Tough times don’t define us, they unmask us,” Del Rosario said. “Being a man is leaving the world better than we find it… doing good even when there’s nothing in it for you.”

Those who remember the tortuous path to freedom are frustrated that Filipinos seem to have so forgotten and forgiven the sins of the dictatorship that they are now open to more of the same. Some of the folks yearning for the “golden years” of one-man rule must have visited “Marcos country” the Ilocos Region and “dictator” Duterte’s bailiwick of Davao City, and liked what they saw.

Government appears to be working in these areas. What about the human rights violations, the accusations of large-scale corruption, the need for good government?

Judging from survey results, there are Filipinos who think that before you can add “good” to governance, you first have to govern.


Caricatured FIRST PERSON By Alex Magno (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 25, 2016 - 12:00am 0 3 googleplus0 0


By Alex Magno

Stop blaming our children for not appreciating the Edsa Revolution. They know better than us.

I was at Edsa 30 years ago in the company of communards from Diliman. My firstborn was a toddler and my second was eagerly waiting to be born. But that mattered little the moment the tanks at the Ortigas junction revved their engines and threatened to plow through the crowd. We locked arms and prepared to stand our ground.

For 14 years until that day, I was an activist fighting the dictatorship. I was treated to the hospitality, and tender mercies, of the detention camps. I lost so many friends who did not think it foolhardy to put their lives on the line for something as abstract as Freedom.

Scientists now tell us that men in their twenties are at the peak of their powers. It is the period when genius flowers, when creativity is boundless.

For those of my generation, our twenties were spent playing cat-and-mouse games with the secret police. The best of our generation lived short lives, many dying in excruciating pain.

The springtime of our geniuses was spent surviving the repression. We read events intently. We anticipated the surprises of politics. We could peer down a crowded street and instinctively know something was amiss. We would look a stranger in the eye and, in an instant, decide to entrust our lives to him.

READ MORE...

In the rough and tumble of resistance politics, lasting friendships were formed and love found. Living dangerously had its merits. The worst of times were also the best of times.

I recall fervent conversations in the shadows. We were young boys really who decided to change the world even before we understood it – by every instrument of violence if that was necessary.

Many of my comrades from that time could not imagine living to be 30. It was a violent time, the depths of dictatorship, especially for those who decided to fight it. The enemy, we thought, might likely kill us but they could never defeat the Cause.

From the vantage point of middle age, we recall the fighting attitudes of that time with a little embarrassment. When we share meals these days, my comrades from those gung-ho years proudly pull out their senior citizens card to claim the discount we are entitled to.

Inflection Every moment, through those heady four days at Edsa, the band of communards I was with, knew that what we were in was merely an inflection in the stream of historical events. There was hard struggle that led to this moment and there will be hard struggles after it.

Freedom is not a constant state; it evolves. The Cause is not a destination; it is a direction.

We were debating the uprising even before it actually happened. The dictatorship exhibited every sign of “regime aging” – referring to something more than the tyrant’s state of health.

We were busy looking for the breaking points in a political arrangement that cannot possibly reproduce itself. The most important consideration, I recall, was to help ensure a “failed state” does not happen – or we could face a condition of unrestrained violence among the contending movements and factions. That would produce so much senseless loss of life.

Ninoy Aquino, exiled in Boston, knew as well the breaking point was about to happen. In conversations recounted by those who saw him there, the former senator constantly fretted over the possibility new leaders could rise and displace him at the head of a popular democratic resistance. He could not accept that and decided to assume the risk of coming home.

For a man as proud as Ninoy, irrelevance was a fate worse than death.

Sections of the military, including factions of the Palace clique, knew the breakpoint was coming. Each prepared in their own way to capture power when the moment came.

Ferdinand E. Marcos was the last person, I suspect, to realize his regime could not reproduce without him. He tried vainly to ensure his regime’s perpetuation even as his closest supporters prepared to war with each other.

The orthodox left, at that time the most important group outside the tyrannical circle was trapped in its own dogma. They decided to boycott the snap elections at a time when building tactical alliances was most important. Engrossed with capturing a monopoly of power, the orthodox left clung to orthodoxy and misread the confluence of events.

In the days following the uprising, and the formal return to power of the old oligarchy, we found the perfect word to describe the confluence of events. We called it a “conjuncture.”

Colored

The Edsa Uprising has since been colored deeper and deeper yellow.

That moment in our history has since been elevated into some sort of divine intervention into the affairs of men. It was defined as a demarcation line between the “bad old days” and the triumph of “democracy.”

There were those more comfortable in describing things in plain black and white. Everything and everyone associated with the authoritarian period was bad and everything associated with Cory Aquino was good.

In a word, the complex conjuncture of events and forces, factional and class interests, was simplified. The inflection in the course of the historical stream was reduced to caricature.

Increasingly, what we commemorate this day each year is more propaganda and less history. The caricatured “Edsa Revolution” has become the means by which one distinct oligarchic faction excludes the rest of the political field from equal access to the state.

As with all exclusionary politics, this self-serving use of Edsa will implode.


Edsa in 30 years failed the Filipino people! SHOOTING STRAIGHT By Bobit S. Avila (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 25, 2016 - 12:00am 0 0 googleplus0 0


By Bobit Avila

How time flies indeed… 30 years ago, when I was still 34 years old, one seemingly miraculous thing happened to our nation, when right after the snap elections of 1986 at the height of the tabulating and counting, some 35 tabulators and computer programmers assigned at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) which the Comelec at that time used as its nerve center for the counting and tabulating the votes of the snap elections, suddenly walked out of their seats in protest… claiming that they were forced to cheat for Pres. Ferdinand E. Marcos who was challenged by then Mrs. Cory Aquino, widow of the slain Sen. Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr.

That was the event that triggered the historic EDSA People Power Revolution, which ended with the Marcos family flown out of Malacañang Palace to Clark Air Force Base… then onward to a life in exile in Hawaii. We just held a rally with the United Nationalist Democratic Organization (UNIDO) of which I (I was not yet a journalist) was one of the party members in Cebu where we accompanied then Sen. Salvador “Doy” Laurel to the makeshift stage that we set up in front of the Midtown Hotel (It is called Summit Circle Hotel now) in Fuente Osmeña where thousands of Cebuanos trooped to hear Tita Cory Aquino and Doy Laurel denounce the cheating machinery of the Marcoses… called the Comelec.

It was then we overheard from Radyo Bandido that something had gone amiss in Camp Crame… that after the walk out of the 35 computer programmers and tabulators, Butz Aquino, brother of the slain Senator and Jaime Cardinal Sin was heard over the radio asking for the people to troop towards EDSA in protest and they came not by the thousands, but by the hundreds of thousands… the People Power Revolt had begun. The rest as you know is history.

Fast forward 30 years later… and I’m already 64 years old and considered a veteran journalist (my Philippine STAR ID was signed by Antonio Roces and Max Soliven on Aug. 25, 1986) and people asked me what happened in the last 30 years that today the chances of a Marcos scion returning in triumph back to Malacañang is a very high probability. As expected, old anti-Marcos folks notably the victims of Martial Law are hell-bent in exposing the sins of the conjugal Marcos Dictatorship going as far as to blame the children of the late Pres. Ferdinand Marcos for looting the country.

One of the most celebrated Marcos victims is Sen. Serge Osmeña III who during an interview a couple of months ago on ABS-CBN stated that if the Filipino people vote Ferdinand Marcos Jr. as vice president, we will be the laughing stock of the world. But aren’t we already the laughing stock of the world? In August 2011 when eight Hong Kong tourists were killed by a lone hostage taker, a bemedalled Senior Police Supt. Mendoza, and the SWAT Team attacked the bus in full satellite TV coverage, we became the laughing stock of the world!

But in fairness to us who fought the Marcos Dictatorship, right after we won the EDSA Revolt, we walked upright with our heads high proclaiming to the world that we were proud Filipinos. So when did we move from our euphoria of freeing ourselves from the dictatorship that held this nation for 14 long years back to being the laughing stock of the world?

What lessons have we learned from all the 30 years after the EDSA Revolt?

First of all, we must accept and admit that Filipinos do not know how to fix our problems. Come now…we don’t have to reinvent the wheel, as there are many ideas from all over the world that we could copy. Yet we don’t copy them. That’s because the Cory regime created the 1987 Constitution, which was so kilometric and totally disregarded by our lawmakers… it is nothing but a joke! This constitution brought back the hated oligarchy into the national scene and they came back with a vengeance. Worse of all, the unlamented cronies of the Marcos Dictatorship also returned and joined the politicians of today. So now it is the Marcoses who are returning to power.

This is why my mentor and I, the late Manong Max Soliven would often write about EDSA that we removed Ali Baba, but kept the forty thieves in power. Yes… by the forty thieves, we meant those people who are in the Senate and in Congress… many of whom should by now be indicted by the Office of the Ombudsman for the misuse of the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) and the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP).

30-years after the EDSA Revolt, we now face with the prospect of having the Marcoses return to Malacañang with a vengeance, I don’t blame the Marcoses. I blame the very people who threw them out and became little dictators themselves. The Marcos Dictatorship eventually evolved into the Aquino Regime’s having all three branches of the government in his pocket, which is to stay the least a form of dictatorship. This is why we want change!


EDSA just a revolt, not a ‘Revolution’ POSTSCRIPT By Federico D. Pascual Jr. (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 28, 2016 - 12:00am 0 0 googleplus0 0


By Federico D. Pascual Jr

IN POSTSCRIPT, we have always referred to the bloodless upheaval that shook the country in February 1986 and forced then President Ferdinand E. Marcos to flee into exile as the “EDSA Revolt” – not the “EDSA Revolution.”

Even when using quoted material, we feel uneasy calling that phenomenon a revolution because it was not really that. A more proper tag, also catchy, may even be “EDSA People Power,” the name that caught the imagination of the world and inspired similar upheavals elsewhere.

In Postscript, we also habitually say “martial RULE” – not “martial LAW” – to describe the 13-year repressive regime that many of its victims decried as in wanton violation of law and decency despite the care that Marcos the astute lawyer took in laying the legal basis for what he was about to do.

We are bringing out this point about names, because during the 30th commemoration of EDSA, a confetti of varicolored political labels rained on us – revolution, revolt, rebellion, uprising, putsch, mutiny, coup d’etat, et cetera, and we are pressed to differentiate.

The dictionary tells us that a Revolution, often attended by armed violence, radically changes the way a country is governed, usually installing a substantially different (not necessarily better) political system.

But when a Revolt is staged, while there is also a degree of violence against the installed authority, the resulting changes are limited in scope, effect and duration.

What happened in February 1986 on EDSA and its political ripple effects on the rest of the country was just a Revolt, not a Revolution. (Those who disagree can continue to imagine it to be a full-blown revolution. No problem.)

A revolution, of course, has a romantic ring to it and brings a sense of pride to the instigators and a feeling of satisfaction to those who benefit from it. But those who insist in massaging a lizard into a crocodile better be careful with that yawning jaw.

READ MORE...

To conclude this discussion, just look around to spot the supposed “revolutionary” changes. We see the same rascals – many of the stout ones now wearing yellow – cavorting on stage, feasting at the banquet table, and salivating for more of the same.

The poor groundlings, the masses standing below as they watch the alleged “revolution” unfolding on stage, are about to shout “harang!” (“Robbery!”)

It is sad that the vaunted 1986 EDSA “Revolution” has turned out to be merely a change of cast, the plum roles cornered by the same ruling elite, with the minor parts going to the same theater company union members.

If we may digress, listen to Lupita Aquino-Kashiwahara, sister of Ninoy Aquino (martyred father of President Noynoy Aquino) talking to the Philippine News in the San Francisco Bay Area on the occasion of EDSA-30:

“The EDSA Revolution (sic) occurred 30 years ago. It was a time of heady, frightening, exhilarating, acts of random kindness. Now that we have survived, we must never forget what we lived and some of us died for.

“It is important to remember what caused us to revolt.

“Today, the name of the dictator rears its ambitious head once again, unrepentant of his parents’ sins, discounting their evil deeds. But the same blood flows in his veins. He benefitted from their ill-gotten wealth and grew in the spotlight as privileged. Unless he apologizes for the tortures, the killings, the theft of the nation’s day-to-day survival, and recognizes the sins, we have to be on guard not to spawn such treachery again.

“On the 30th anniversary of the EDSA Revolution (sic), we will overcome national amnesia and remember.”

• Tagle: Charity springs from the heart FILIPINO Luis Chito Cardinal Tagle, addressing a conference at the Vatican last Friday on the 10th anniversary of Benedict XVI’s Deus Caritas Est, stressed that charity is to be done from the heart, never out of obligation nor with a superior attitude.

ZENIT news service reported that Tagle emphasized how the encyclical taught this in his address in the New Synod Hall of the Vatican’s Paul VI Hall. The cardinal is leader of Caritas Internationalis. (Postscript encourages readers to subscribe to ZENIT Daily Email Newsletter.)

Tagle said: “So on the one hand, we are invited to rediscover the wealth of teaching contained in the encyclical. On the other hand, we are reminded that we are reading it within the concrete realities of 2016, 10 years after.”

While the encyclical can shed much light on the contemporary situation, he said the world and its events, can affirm, challenge, and expand the encyclical’s legacy. The Jubilee Year of Mercy, he added, can also provide opportunity to reflect on it.

Last May, Tagle recalled, Caritas Internationalis approved the strategic orientations that must guide the service of charity over the next four years: (1) “Caritas at the heart of the Church. Uphold the Catholic Identity of Caritas which is at the essential service of the Church to the poor”; (2) “Save lives, rebuild communities, reduce the impact of humanitarian crises by enhancing disaster preparedness and response”; (3) “Promote sustainable, integral, human development”; (4) “Build global solidarity and address the causes of extreme poverty through reinforced communication, education, and mobilization, and enhance the visibility of Caritas”; and (5) “Make the caritas federation more effective….”

How? Tagle said: “By building a stronger confederation based on professional and effective methods, guiding them by the formation of the heart, and mobilizing more resources.”


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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