NOY'S CORNER THIS PAST WEEK...
(MINI-READS followed by FULL REPORTS below)

PHNO's MUST READ: THE MYTH OF 'CHINESE WISDOM'
[Here in the Philippines, there is a product of myth-making by – guess who? – the Americans!]


BY NESTOR MATA: Nestor Mata (born 1926)is a Filipino journalist whose writing career spanned six decades. He is also known as the only survivor of the 1957 plane crash that killed the President of the Philippines, Ramon Magsaysay, and 24 others
FROM WIKIPEDIA 
MUCH has been written about China’s changing foreign policy since the new Chinese leadership under President Xi Jinping took power on November 15, 2012. It’s surprising, then, that one new catch-phrase in China’s evolving diplomacy has gone largely unnoticed: “Chinese wisdom.”   The catch-phrase was first used by China at the Asia Pacific Council (APEC) summit in Beijing late last year. As Foreign Minister Wang Yi put it, “Under the conditions of democratic transparency and the basis of sufficient consultation, we want energetically to send out China’s voice, put forward China’s proposals and contribute China’s wisdom.”  The Chinese leadership refers to Chinese wisdom in the context of the so-called home-field diplomacy, describing China’s effort to use its advantage as host to promote its own proposals and ideas. China’s new catch phrase also appears at events outside of China. What is behind this idea of Chinese wisdom? Overall, the phrase encompasses many diplomatic concepts, ideas, or proposals that emerged in China’s diplomacy since 2013: the New Asian Security Concept, the Nuclear Security Concept, China’s new neighborhood diplomacy and “new type great power relations.” Many of those new diplomatic efforts are aimed at preventing a repeat of historical zero-sum games and at creating international equality. Chinese media praises Chinese wisdom only as a new tool to handle international affairs while neglecting its impact on and roots in China’s internal affairs. READ MORE...

ALSO Must Read: China, the bully of South China


BY DUCKY PAREDES: Horace 'Ducky' Paredes was former President Cory Aquino's Press Secretary and Malaya political columnist since 1993.

THE Bully of the South China Sea must adhere to international laws for the sake of regional peace and stability. This was the statement from Malacañang as it welcomed fresh assurances of support from United States President Barack Obama and other world leaders in seeking a diplomatic solution to the West Philippine Sea dispute.
“We note that in his most recent remarks in Jamaica, President Obama has reaffirmed the solidarity of the United States with the Philippines in upholding the principle that disputes on maritime entitlements in the South China Sea must be resolved diplomatically and in accordance with international law,” said Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. Obama expressed concern at a town-hall event in Kingston, Jamaica Thursday over China’s use of its “sheer size and muscle” to push around small countries like the Philippines and Vietnam in the South China Sea and West Philippine Sea. President Aquino will probably raise the issue at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit in Malaysia later this month. In the ASEAN summits in Cambodia in 2012, Brunei Darussalam in 2013 and Myanmar last year, Aquino had consistently advocated the fleshing out of a legally binding code of conduct of parties in the South China Sea and West Philippine Sea to ensure peace and stability in the region. Coloma says that “a rules-based community” with shared values and norms would be key to achieving a cohesive, peaceful, stable and resilient region. Coloma emphasized that countries must have a shared responsibility for comprehensive security and should work for “a dynamic and outward-looking region in an increasingly integrated and interdependent world.”  READ MORE...

ALSO: Palace shrugs off China's dismissal of Noy's remark
[WORLD SHOULD FEAR CHINA's ACTIONS IN SOUTH CHINA SEA SAYS, PHILIPPINE PREZ AQUINO]


President Benigno Aquino III holds documents as he talks on various issues, including the disputed reefs on the South China Sea. AP file photo/Bullit Marquez  - Malacañang on Thursday shrugged off China's reaction to President Benigno Aquino III's latest statements on the South China Sea dispute. In a press briefing, Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said China's comment dismissing Aquino's views was nothing new. "Sa maraming pagkakataon ay kapansin-pansin naman na hindi magkatugma ang posisyon ng ating dalawang bansa. Pangkaraniwan na 'yung kanilang hindi pag-sang-ayon sa ating mga inilalahad na posisyon," Coloma said. Despite the verbal tussle between the two nations, Coloma assured that the Philippine government will remain calm and reasonable. "Ganunpaman, hindi rin naman tayo natitinag doon sa ating paniwala na katuwiran pa rin ang dapat umiral dito. Kinakailangan pa ring mag-focus tayo sa mga mahinahon at makatuwirang paraan sa mga kilos pangdiplomatiko at hindi naman nababago ang ating posisyon," Coloma said READ MORE...

ALSO: Aquino insisted South China Sea dispute a global problem


Aerial surveillance images obtained by The STAR show Ma- bini Reef in March last year (left), with only one building that served as a temporary shelter for workers. The image on the right, taken recently, shows more structures and trees planted on the reef. 
Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III insisted on Friday that China's aggression in the disputed South China Sea should not only trouble South East Asian nations. "We keep asserting na 'yung problema sa South China Sea hindi regional problem," Aquino said in a media interview in Tarlac City. "Problema ng buong mundo lalo na dahil... hindi bababa sa apatnapung porsyento ng kalakal sa buong mundo ay kailangang tumawid dito sa dagat na ito," he explained. Aquino said nations should express concern over China's massive reclamation activities on contested islands and reefs and its fishing policy that could be enforced within the Philippines' exclusive economic zone. "So 'yung pagsasalita ng mga ibang bansa, lalo na 'yung hindi talaga nandito sa ating lugar, kumikilala doon sa bigat ng problema na problema ng lahat," Aquino said. READ MORE....

ALSO: Gov’t negotiators flayed for lack of due diligence


MR. MOHAGHER IQBAL Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal’s owning up to using an alias from the start of the peace process had its backlash on the government peace panel who senators accused yesterday of failing to conduct due diligence on their counterpart in the signing of the crucial peace deal. Iqbal continued to hide his true identity during the resumption of the Senate deliberations on the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) as he insisted about the “sensibilities” divulging his true name while asserting that the government is fully apprised of his use of a nom de guerre. “It appears that from the start no due diligence was done by the government peace panel that was the reason for their not being aware of the real names of their counterparts in the negotiation. And I’m surprised that up to the signing of the agreement, they still did not know the true identity of the persons they were dealing with for the past 17 years,” Sen. Nancy Binay said. Binay likened the situation to an engaged couple in which one of the fiancee uses a false name.
“What happens then when the engaged couple is married? Does that mean that the bride will agree to marrying somebody who refuse to give his full name?,” Binay added.
Binay’s tirades were in relation to the admission of Presidential Adviser on Peace Process Teresita Quintos-Deles, during Monday’s Senate hearing on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), where she admitted not knowing Iqbal’s real name even as she claimed that the government knew about it all along.READ MORE...

ALSO: Aquino is obstacle to peace negotiations, say Reds negotiator Jalandoni
[Jalandoni told reporters the Aquino administration could only handle “one peace talk at a time.”  “A leader should not just concentrate on one problem. He must have the capacity to face different issues,” he said in a press conference. Formal peace talks between the government and the NDF stalled in April 2013.]


National Democratic Front (NDF) chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni and President Benigno Aquino III
. FILE PHOTOS
National Democratic Front (NDF) chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni on Saturday said President Benigno Aquino III had become an “obstacle” to the resumption of peace talks with the communist rebels, accusing him of using the Bangsamoro Basic Law and Moro Islamic Liberation Front issues as an excuse to stall negotiations. Jalandoni’s remark came after Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang welcomed the proposal of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF)—the alliance of communist-led underground organizations—to resume peace talks with the government. Catapang said the AFP fully supported the government in its commitment to end all internal armed conflicts and push peace and development in conflict-affected areas. READ MORE

ALSO TIMES ANALYSIS: The case against Aquino


by FRANCISCO S. TATAD
As promised, I shall try to sum up in this column the main reasons why I believe President B. S. Aquino 3rd should go now—not in 2016, as some critic-defenders insist, but right now, without a moment’s further delay. This requires at the very least a book-length review. But having neither the time nor the space, I shall try to do what is possible within this column. So here we go. Aquino has committed many crimes against the Constitution, which have long deserved his stepping down. Had the nation turned him out earlier, the Mamasapano massacre and the Bangsamoro Basic Law disaster might never have happened. Now, every moment that he remains in office adds to the gravity of his unpunished crimes, and creates an incalculable risk to the security, safety and sanity of the nation. The good cardinal-archbishop of Manila, whose shoe laces we are not worthy to untie, has said that since PNoy is not eligible for “reelection,” (though possibly still open to “other options”), he should be allowed to “finish his term until June 30, 2016,” regardless of what he has done. And he should be succeeded by someone elected in the proposed May 2016 presidential elections. It is injurious to our Republic to wait for the 2016 elections This seems a perfectly reasonable proposition, except for three small material objections. READ MORE...plus Readers' comments...
 


READ FULL MEDIA NEWS REPORT:

By Nestor Mata: The myth of ‘Chinese wisdom’ MANILA, APRIL 20, 2015 (MALAYA) By NESTOR MATA on April 16, 2015


by Nestor Mata (born 1926) is a Filipino journalist whose writing career spanned six decades. He is also known as the only survivor of the 1957 plane crash that killed the President of the Philippines, Ramon Magsaysay, and 24 others FROM WIKIPEDIA

MUCH has been written about China’s changing foreign policy since the new Chinese leadership under President Xi Jinping took power on November 15, 2012.

It’s surprising, then, that one new catch-phrase in China’s evolving diplomacy has gone largely unnoticed: “Chinese wisdom.”

The catch-phrase was first used by China at the Asia Pacific Council (APEC) summit in Beijing late last year.

As Foreign Minister Wang Yi put it, “Under the conditions of democratic transparency and the basis of sufficient consultation, we want energetically to send out China’s voice, put forward China’s proposals and contribute China’s wisdom.”

The Chinese leadership refers to Chinese wisdom in the context of the so-called home-field diplomacy, describing China’s effort to use its advantage as host to promote its own proposals and ideas. China’s new catch phrase also appears at events outside of China.

What is behind this idea of Chinese wisdom?

Overall, the phrase encompasses many diplomatic concepts, ideas, or proposals that emerged in China’s diplomacy since 2013: the New Asian Security Concept, the Nuclear Security Concept, China’s new neighborhood diplomacy and “new type great power relations.”


NOVEMBER 6, 2013 CARTOON: Xi Jinping has stressed China's role in Asia, rather than as an outsider --- Lanxin Xiang says China, for so long blinkered by a puffed-up sense of self-importance, is finally seeing the value of engaging with its neighbours for peace and mutual gain PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 05 November, 2013, 6:25pm SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST -Insights & Opinions. CARTOON APPENDED BY PHNO

Many of those new diplomatic efforts are aimed at preventing a repeat of historical zero-sum games and at creating international equality.

Chinese media praises Chinese wisdom only as a new tool to handle international affairs while neglecting its impact on and roots in China’s internal affairs.

READ MORE...
China affairs watchers and scholars agree that Chinese foreign policy is mostly shaped by China’s internal development.

Beijing’s new diplomatic initiatives can best be understood against the background of China’s internal changes.

For instance, President Xi constantly stresses that Western-style civil society and democracy do not fit with China’s developmental path.

Instead, Xi focuses on ancient Chinese thinkers like the legalist Han Feizi and quotes them:

“When those who uphold the law are strong, the state is strong. When they are weak, the state is weak.”

The appeals to “Chinese wisdom” demonstrate an unwillingness to accept Western concepts.

The diplomatic purpose is similar.

The New Asian Security Concept or “new type great power relations” seek to create a new structure of international relations, one different from what China considers to be typical European and American concepts of zero-sum games and Cold War alliance systems.

Both these Chinese concepts are in line with China’s traditional notion of harmony.

Under the Chinese conception of harmony, different things and even contradictions are complementary to each other and only their mutual existence guarantees prosperity.

When Chinese leaders speak about “being united, but not being the same” they directly refer to China’s ideal concept of harmony.

The backbone of Chinese wisdom is an uncritical interpretation of China’s past and Chinese thinkers.

Almost all the new diplomatic initiatives complement the Chinese Communist Party’s long-standing official line on peaceful development, claiming that China has always been peaceful and will continue to be so.

And another long-held CCP position is that Western democracy and civil society per se do not match to China’s culture.

The two big CPP goals are to transform China into a superpower and to maintain the monopoly of the party.

The CCP has created a myth about China’s past and thus faces an internal and external credibility problem.

More significantly, due to the uncritical usage of China’s history and “Chinese wisdom,” many aspects of China’s very diverse wisdom cannot be fruitfully used for China’s own future.

So, in the future, one must look for many other Chinese domestic and diplomatic concepts or ideas to appear under the framework of “Chinese wisdom.”

Though “Chinese wisdom” is a product of myth-making and China’s current challenges, these new concepts do not need to be harmful to the international community.

***


"neither corrupt nor intellectual"

Here in the Philippines, there is a product of myth-making by – guess who? – the Americans!

An excerpt from Robert D. Kaplan’s book “Asia’s Cauldron: The South China Sea and the end of a Stable Pacific” revealed this: “From the Americans’ point of view, the current President Benigno Aquino III, constituted a window of opportunity ...They saw him as neither corrupt nor ineffectual ... who wanted to root out corruption and alleviate poverty through oil and gas revenues in the South China Sea. ‘Good luck with that, you might say.’ Nevertheless, U.S. officials felt they had to exploit his tenure ... ‘Let’s institutionalize a new relationship while he’s still in power’ ...”

One recalls that TIME, too, had created the myth of Aquino as a political “savior” before the 2010 elections, but the international magazine did not care to revisit the myth after he was de-mystified in a New York Times editorial about “Political Mischief in the Philippines” in August 28, 2014 which suggested that not all was well in the Philippines under Aquino’s administration.

Indeed, as his critics in both political and media circles have commented, what we have in the country today is an emergent dictatorship that has seized all levels of power in order to hijack the tripartite system of government and exercise the presidency without any sense of its constitutional limits.

***

Thought of the Day: “Wisdom is divided into two parts, namely, having a great deal to say, and not saying it!” – Anon.

Category: Column Of The Day


MALAYA

China, the bully of South China Sea By Ducky Paredes on April 13, 2015


By DUCKY PAREDES: (Horace 'Ducky' Paredes was former President Cory Aquino's Press Secretary)


This is what we in the Western Philippine Sea think of China and its new map (from the Manila Times).CROSSPOSTED FROM DUCKY PAREDES FACEBOOK PHOTOS

THE Bully of the South China Sea must adhere to international laws for the sake of regional peace and stability.

This was the statement from Malacañang as it welcomed fresh assurances of support from United States President Barack Obama and other world leaders in seeking a diplomatic solution to the West Philippine Sea dispute.

“We note that in his most recent remarks in Jamaica, President Obama has reaffirmed the solidarity of the United States with the Philippines in upholding the principle that disputes on maritime entitlements in the South China Sea must be resolved diplomatically and in accordance with international law,” said Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr.

Obama expressed concern at a town-hall event in Kingston, Jamaica Thursday over China’s use of its “sheer size and muscle” to push around small countries like the Philippines and Vietnam in the South China Sea and West Philippine Sea.

President Aquino will probably raise the issue at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit in Malaysia later this month.

In the ASEAN summits in Cambodia in 2012, Brunei Darussalam in 2013 and Myanmar last year, Aquino had consistently advocated the fleshing out of a legally binding code of conduct of parties in the South China Sea and West Philippine Sea to ensure peace and stability in the region.

Coloma says that “a rules-based community” with shared values and norms would be key to achieving a cohesive, peaceful, stable and resilient region. Coloma emphasized that countries must have a shared responsibility for comprehensive security and should work for “a dynamic and outward-looking region in an increasingly integrated and interdependent world.”

READ  MORE...
Obama raised his concerns over China just hours after Beijing gave a detailed defense of its creation of artificial islands in the contested waterway.

Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte says: “We have committed to pursuing our cause through recognized fora, and that we continue to adopt the rules-based approach; meaning, we will follow the ways laid down under international law to fight for what is ours... This support is manifested in so many ways by members of the global community,” Valte said.

She said it would be up to the Department of National Defense and the Armed Forces of the Philippines to study proposals for increased presence of US and Philippine troops in the West Philippine Sea to protect the country’s sovereignty.

While the new islands are not likely to overturn US military superiority in the region, workers are building ports and fuel storage depots and possibly two airstrips that experts have said would allow Beijing to project power deep into the maritime heart of Southeast Asia.

***


KINGSTON/BEIJING (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama said Washington is concerned China is using its “sheer size and muscle” to push around smaller nations in the South China Sea, drawing a swift rebuke from Beijing which accused the United States of being the bully.

“Where we get concerned with China is where it is not necessarily abiding by international norms and rules and is using its sheer size and muscle to force countries into subordinate positions,” Obama said in Jamaica ahead of a Caribbean summit in Panama.

“We think this can be solved diplomatically, but just because the Philippines or Vietnam are not as large as China doesn’t mean that they can just be elbowed aside,” he said.

China, which has asked Washington not to take sides in the row, says it is willing to discuss the issue with individual countries directly involved in the dispute. However, it has refused to participate in an international arbitration case filed by the Philippines in The Hague.

For the Department of Foreign Affairs, the US statements reflect a growing international concern over Chinese reclamation activities.

“The US has issued recent statements on China’s massive reclamation activities. These statements, and those of other nations, reflect growing international concern over these reclamations that are contrary to international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), and undermine our collective efforts to build regional security and stability,” the DFA said in a statement.

“Developments in the South China Sea concern not only the claimant states and the region, but also the international community. All should contribute to efforts to establish a regional architecture based on the rule of law,” the DFA said.

The Philippines, the DFA pointed out, would continue to work with ASEAN and other responsible members of the international community to address China’s unilateral and aggressive actions.

***

In answer to US President Obama’s remarks, China said the United States is the one that has the “largest size and muscle in the world,” in response to US President Barack Obama’s expression of concern that China was using its “sheer size and muscle” to push around smaller nations like the Philippines that have claims in the South China Sea.


China’s Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Hua Chunying (YouTube Screen Capture)

“Speaking of size and muscle, I believe everyone knows well who has the largest size and muscle in the world,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said.

But Hua maintained that China firmly upholds and promotes peace and stability in the disputed waters. Hua said China and ASEAN countries are in positive and effective communication to fully implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and advance the negotiation on the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC).

“It is hoped that the American side would respect the efforts made by China and ASEAN countries and play a positive, constructive and responsible role for regional peace and stability,” Hua added.

But China has still rejected the multilateral approach to resolving the disputes. China was also criticized for lack of transparency and intended strategic purpose in its defense spending increases. Beijing defended the growth of their military budget, saying it is necessary to protect China’s interest, sovereignty and border.

***

Like the neighborhood bully picking on smaller street kids, China refuses to talk to anyone but its very victims, the smaller nations that China can easily take over for sheer lack of military capability.

Our one hope for the Philippines is that the United States will not stop caring enough for the preservation of democracy in this Asian country to which it gave independence after World War II.

Hopefully, the incoming new President in the US will not have an Asia policy that will give China a chance to grow into an even bigger bully than it has already become.

***

Presidential candidate Ping Lacson’s favorite quote from Mahatma Gandhi:. “There are seven things that will destroy us: Wealth without Work;. Pleasure without Conscience; Knowledge without Character; Religion without Sacrifice; Politics without Principle; Science without Humanity; Business without Ethics.”


PHILSTAR

Palace shrugs off China's dismissal of Noy's remark By Louis Bacani (philstar.com) | Updated April 16, 2015 - 3:52pm


President Benigno Aquino III holds documents as he talks on various issues, including the disputed reefs on the South China Sea. AP file photo/Bullit Marquez

MANILA, Philippines - Malacañang on Thursday shrugged off China's reaction to President Benigno Aquino III's latest statements on the South China Sea dispute.

In a press briefing, Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said China's comment dismissing Aquino's views was nothing new.

"Sa maraming pagkakataon ay kapansin-pansin naman na hindi magkatugma ang posisyon ng ating dalawang bansa. Pangkaraniwan na 'yung kanilang hindi pag-sang-ayon sa ating mga inilalahad na posisyon," Coloma said.

Despite the verbal tussle between the two nations, Coloma assured that the Philippine government will remain calm and reasonable.

"Ganunpaman, hindi rin naman tayo natitinag doon sa ating paniwala na katuwiran pa rin ang dapat umiral dito. Kinakailangan pa ring mag-focus tayo sa mga mahinahon at makatuwirang paraan sa mga kilos pangdiplomatiko at hindi naman nababago ang ating posisyon," Coloma said.

READ MORE...
Aquino told the Agence France-Presse earlier this week that China’s efforts to stake its claim to most of the South China Sea "should engender fear for the rest of the world."

He made this comment amid growing concern over China's massive reclamation on islands and reefs in the contested waters.

Aquino warned that China's increasingly assertive actions could affect nations' access to international shipping lanes and fishing grounds in the sea.

The President also said that it is still possible for China to intentionally engage in military conflicts over the territorial disputes with the Philippines and other Asian nation.

China's Foreign Ministry belied Aquino's remarks, claiming that the massive reclamation "does not affect or target any country" nor does it threaten countries' access to international shipping lanes and fishing grounds.

"The accusation made by the Philippine side is unfounded. China holds a consistent and clear position on the South China Sea issue," Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hong Lei said.

Hong maintained that China's construction on the contested islands and reefs "falls entirely within China's sovereignty."

The official hit back at the Philippines, claiming it has occupied "by force" some islands and reefs of the Spratlys since 1970s.

"The Chinese side urges the Philippine side to respect China's territorial sovereignty," Hong said.

He said the Philippines should return to the "right track" of resolving the disputes through bilateral negotiation.


PHILSTAR

Aquino: South China Sea dispute a global problem By Louis Bacani (philstar.com) | Updated April 17, 2015 - 4:33pm


Aerial surveillance images obtained by The STAR show Ma- bini Reef in March last year (left), with only one building that served as a temporary shelter for workers. The image on the right, taken recently, shows more structures and trees planted on the reef.

MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III insisted on Friday that China's aggression in the disputed South China Sea should not only trouble South East Asian nations.

"We keep asserting na 'yung problema sa South China Sea hindi regional problem," Aquino said in a media interview in Tarlac City.

"Problema ng buong mundo lalo na dahil... hindi bababa sa apatnapung porsyento ng kalakal sa buong mundo ay kailangang tumawid dito sa dagat na ito," he explained.

Aquino said nations should express concern over China's massive reclamation activities on contested islands and reefs and its fishing policy that could be enforced within the Philippines' exclusive economic zone.

"So 'yung pagsasalita ng mga ibang bansa, lalo na 'yung hindi talaga nandito sa ating lugar, kumikilala doon sa bigat ng problema na problema ng lahat," Aquino said.

READ MORE...
The president was referring to the declaration on maritime security made recently by the foreign ministers of the world's seven most industrialized countries, who raised alarm over China's actions.

In a statement, the foreign ministers from the Group of Seven (G7) nations renewed their call for a maritime order that is based on international law. They also reiterated their commitment to the freedoms of navigation, other internationally lawful uses of the high seas and the exclusive economic zones and related rights and freedoms in other maritime zones.

"We continue to observe the situation in the East and South China Seas and are concerned by any unilateral actions, such as large scale land reclamation, which change the status quo and increase tensions," the diplomats said.

They continued: "We strongly oppose any attempt to assert territorial or maritime claims through the use of intimidation, coercion or force. We call on all states to pursue the peaceful management or settlement of maritime disputes in accordance with international law."

At the 26th summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations later this month, Aquino said he will again call for the crafting of a formal Code of Conduct that would govern nations' actions in the South China Sea.

"Sana umusbong na magkaroon na nu'ng start nu'ng formal talks sa pagpo-formulate nitong Code of Conduct," he said.

RELATED NEWS EXCERPT FROM HEADLINE NEWS SECTION:

China ignores global outcry vs reclamation


Aerial surveillance images obtained by The STAR show Ma- bini Reef in March last year (left), with only one building that served as a temporary shelter for workers. The image on the right, taken recently, shows more structures and trees planted on the reef.

Beijing shrugged off yesterday the expression of concern raised by the Group of Seven industrialized countries over threats to stability in the South China Sea and West Philippine Sea, saying China’s activities in the region – including its massive reclamation – are “beyond reproach.”

The foreign ministry argued Beijing is committed to safeguarding regional peace and stability and pushing for mutually beneficial and win-win arrangements with countries concerned. “The situation of this region is generally stable and relevant cooperation has been moved forward with positive results,” foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said in a press conference in Beijing. “It is hoped that relevant countries would fully respect the efforts by regional countries to safeguard regional peace and stability, and do more things that contribute to regional peace and stability.” 

China reiterated that China’s construction and maintenance work on some garrisoned islands and reefs in the Spratly Islands are intended to “optimize their functions, improve the living and working conditions of personnel stationed there and what’s more, to perform China’s international responsibility and obligation in maritime search and rescue, disaster prevention and mitigation, marine science and research, meteorological observation, environmental protection, navigation safety, fishery production service and other areas.”   FULL REPORT ON HEADLINE NEWS SECTION.


TRIBUNE

Gov’t negotiators flayed for lack of due diligence
Written by Angie M. Rosales
Wednesday, 15 April 2015 00:00


MR. MOHAGHER IQBAL

Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal’s owning up to using an alias from the start of the peace process had its backlash on the government peace panel who senators accused yesterday of failing to conduct due diligence on their counterpart in the signing of the crucial peace deal.

Iqbal continued to hide his true identity during the resumption of the Senate deliberations on the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) as he insisted about the “sensibilities” divulging his true name while asserting that the government is fully apprised of his use of a nom de guerre.

“It appears that from the start no due diligence was done by the government peace panel that was the reason for their not being aware of the real names of their counterparts in the negotiation. And I’m surprised that up to the signing of the agreement, they still did not know the true identity of the persons they were dealing with for the past 17 years,” Sen. Nancy Binay said.

Binay likened the situation to an engaged couple in which one of the fiancee uses a false name.

“What happens then when the engaged couple is married? Does that mean that the bride will agree to marrying somebody who refuse to give his full name?,” Binay added.

Binay’s tirades were in relation to the admission of Presidential Adviser on Peace Process Teresita Quintos-Deles, during Monday’s Senate hearing on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), where she admitted not knowing Iqbal’s real name even as she claimed that the government knew about it all along.

READ MORE...
Deles came to the rescue of Iqbal, who was pressed by senators into revealing his true identity, echoing the latter’s excuse on the need to hide behind an alias citing security concerns.

This prompted Senators Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Francis “Chiz” Escudero to inquire on Deles whether she’s privy to the information, to which the latter admitted having no access.

“It’s in the documents but to my personal knowledge, I do not know. I never looked at the papers,” she said.

“No we don’t know the real name,” said Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang, when asked by senators.

Chief negotiator for the government, Prof. Miriam Coronel-Ferrer, told Senate probers that she came to know of Iqbal’s name only while doing a research on the peace process way back in 1990s.

Binay also expressed surprise why the AFP and the government peace panel were clueless on the background of their counterparts after 17 years of negotiating with members of the MILF.

“Despite the millions of pesos poured into the intelligence funds of the AFP, it si truly a wonder for the government not to know the real identity of the individual they are talking with.

Failure of intelligence is clear in this cases and it reflects on the defect in the confidence-building initiatives since this does not speak well of the good faith expected from the other party,” she noted.

The lady senator pointed out that the military had clear and obvious lapses in its intelligence gathering.

Binay also questioned the AFP’s intelligence fund in the military’s failure to unearth relevant information surrounding the peace process and the personalities representing the MILF.



Escudero, chairman of the Senate finance committee, added the proposed spending allocation for the Bangsamoro political entity could be more than the estimated P70 billion it stands to receive during its first fiscal year.

Escudero, thus, pressed the need to subject the Bangsamoro funding to a line-item budgeting scheme just like the appropriation to every local government unit in the country.

“This is just a ballpark figure. They can impose taxes and fees and charges on their own. They can explore and exploit natural resources and these have not yet been factored in,” Escudero said.

Based on the computation of the finance committee, P25.2 billion of the P70 billion will come from the Annual Block Grant; P7 billion from the Special Development Fund; P1 billion from the Transition Fund; P12.6 billion from the National Government Subsidy; P19.9 billion from the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA); P1.7 billion from the ARMM/Bangsamoro collections; and a one-time P2.6 billion Normalization Fund.

These allocations, Escudero said, do not include revenue-generating measures that the Bangsamoro government is empowered to impose such as taxes and fees.

He said he will push for the line-item budgeting of this amount during the deliberation of the proposal in the Senate.

“I don’t question the amount per se. I have always said that Mindanao should get its fair share from the government. But we want to know how, where, when and who will spend this. Will it be beneficial to all Bangsamoro people? Will it go to where it should go?”, Escudero pointed out.

He added: “Let’s face it. The government is providing P70 billion in one swoop, and every Filipino contributed his or her hard earned money there. We want to know if this will be spent fairly and judiciously to all Bangsamoro people, whether they belong with the MILF or not.”
Itemizing the budget, he further said, will also show redundancy of funding as already shown in the lump sum proposal. Gerry Baldo


INQUIRER

Aquino is obstacle to peace negotiations, say Reds Rima Granali and Cynthia D. Balana @inquirerdotnet Philippine Daily Inquirer 2:29 AM | Sunday, April 19th, 2015


National Democratic Front (NDF) chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni and President Benigno Aquino III. FILE PHOTOS

National Democratic Front (NDF) chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni on Saturday said President Benigno Aquino III had become an “obstacle” to the resumption of peace talks with the communist rebels, accusing him of using the Bangsamoro Basic Law and Moro Islamic Liberation Front issues as an excuse to stall negotiations.

Jalandoni’s remark came after Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang welcomed the proposal of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF)—the alliance of communist-led underground organizations—to resume peace talks with the government.

Catapang said the AFP fully supported the government in its commitment to end all internal armed conflicts and push peace and development in conflict-affected areas.

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Catapang said the CPP-NPA-NDF must only show its sincerity by putting a stop to abductions, killings, extortion activities, improvised explosive device attacks and other criminal activities.

One at a time

Jalandoni told reporters the Aquino administration could only handle “one peace talk at a time.”

“A leader should not just concentrate on one problem. He must have the capacity to face different issues,” he said in a press conference.

Formal peace talks between the government and the NDF stalled in April 2013.

Jalandoni said the NDF was “open to peace negotiations with any administration that is serious in engaging in peace talks.”

If this is not possible during Aquino’s term, maybe it could be done with the next administration, he said.

In October last year, a government delegation met with the NDF in the Netherlands on the possibility of resuming formal talks. In December 2014, a draft agreement was made.

Jalandoni said both sides have made efforts to forge a peace agreement but the government had become preoccupied with the BBL issue after the bloody Mamasapano clash.

Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Teresita Deles also undermined the previous agreements with the NDF, he said.

The government and the NDF had more than 10 peace pacts signed during the administration of President Fidel V. Ramos.

Bilateral pacts

Initial bilateral agreements included The Hague Joint Declaration in 1992, the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees in 1995 and The Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law in 1998.

The Hague agreement states that the NDF is not under the government’s judicial entity, thus, the 15 NDF consultants and the 500 political prisoners should be released.

Jalandoni said peace advocates had been urging the government to “respect all agreements, address the roots of armed conflict and resume peace talks.”

But the government wants “surrender” talks, he said.

Under the administration’s “Oplan Bayanihan” counterinsurgency plan, Jalandoni said the target is a peace agreement with the MILF and to “render the CCP, NPA, NDF inconsequential.”

He said the the leftist group remains strong in 71 provinces, contrary to the President’s believe that the CPP-NPA-NDF is losing strength.

READ -What went before: Peace talks between government and communist rebels


MANILA TIMES ANALYSIS

The case against Aquino April 14, 2015 11:08 pm FRANCISCO S. TATAD


by FRANCISCO S. TATAD

As promised, I shall try to sum up in this column the main reasons why I believe President B. S. Aquino 3rd should go now—not in 2016, as some critic-defenders insist, but right now, without a moment’s further delay. This requires at the very least a book-length review. But having neither the time nor the space, I shall try to do what is possible within this column. So here we go.

Aquino has committed many crimes against the Constitution, which have long deserved his stepping down. Had the nation turned him out earlier, the Mamasapano massacre and the Bangsamoro Basic Law disaster might never have happened. Now, every moment that he remains in office adds to the gravity of his unpunished crimes, and creates an incalculable risk to the security, safety and sanity of the nation.

The good cardinal-archbishop of Manila, whose shoe laces we are not worthy to untie, has said that since PNoy is not eligible for “reelection,” (though possibly still open to “other options”), he should be allowed to “finish his term until June 30, 2016,” regardless of what he has done. And he should be succeeded by someone elected in the proposed May 2016 presidential elections.

It is injurious to our Republic to wait for the 2016 elections This seems a perfectly reasonable proposition, except for three small material objections.

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First objection. An increasing number of Filipinos, beginning with some of the good Cardinal’s brother bishops, some Protestant bishops and pastors, and Muslim ulama, especially those who are members of the National Transformation Council, have come to believe that there was no valid presidential election in 2010, and that not having been legitimately elected, Aquino is merely a de facto, rather than a de jure, president. So he does not have a valid six-year term to finish in 2016.

Now, if Smartmatic, the Venezuelan private marketing company that is the election service provider, which conducted the 2010 and 2013 elections on behalf of the Commission on Elections, in total derogation of the Constitution and in violation of the Automated Election law, were to do it all over again, using the same precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machine after it had been divested of all its security features and accuracy mechanisms, contrary to law, what chance would there be of holding a valid election to elect a legitimate (and hopefully worthy) successor to a failed de facto president? None whatsoever.

So what 2016 elections are we talking about?

The situation would not be helped at all, even if the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting, otherwise known as the personal NGO of former Ambassador to the Vatican Henrietta de Villa, were to gratuitously and unilaterally confer its “seal of good housekeeping” on our diseased electoral system for any reason whatsoever.

The Times’ front-page editorial yesterday, (“Occupy Comelec!”), seems to anticipate the volcanic eruption that could occur if no attempt were made to overhaul the decayed electoral system. Nevertheless, obviously determined to claim that it represents the interests of the Catholic Church in cleaning up the process, the PPCRV now seems poised to give the corrupt process and players a clean bill of health, ahead of any rumor of official reform to make the next election less crooked.

This is what PPCRV did in the last two crooked exercises.

Tomorrow, the PPCRV will launch its so-called “One Good Vote” project, with Cardinal Tagle as the announced guest of honor—(I hope he cancels, at the last minute)—obviously to preempt any official Church effort to subject any claims of probity and rectitude on the part of Comelec and Smartmatic to some rigorous questioning.

Second objection. From Plato and Aristotle to Augustine, Aquinas and John Rawls, among others, ancient philosophers and modern thinkers alike have pointed out that no society can exist that is not based on a common conception of justice. It is therefore thoroughly destructive of society for any moral or civil authority of any standing to propose that certain serious crimes against the people and the state could go or should go unpunished. The statement that less than 500 days remain before Aquino vacates the presidency, and that the nation could afford to leave him undisturbed assumes a lot that is both morally and constitutionally dangerous.

This wrongly and irresponsibly assumes, among other things, that we can predict that nothing untoward or evil could happen to us, to Aquino or to the nation under Aquino, during those next several hundred days. It seems more prudent to draw counsel from the wise Augustine who finds it absurd for anyone to predict that nothing untoward or evil could happen to them in the next several hundred days when they could not say, with any degree of certainty, that nothing untoward or evil could happen to them in the next few minutes.

The clearest illustration of this is what happened at Mamasapano. On the evening of Jan. 24, nobody ever imagined that Aquino would experience a mental breakdown in Zamboanga City the next day, which would lead to the massacre of the 44 PNP-SAF commandos so many kilometers away. What happened in Zamboanga, and what happened to him thereafter, have led people to believe that the President is suffering from a serious mental or psychological disorder that could recur anytime anywhere without any warning.

But since he will not provide the public the necessary information about his state of mental health and will not submit to any psychological tests, the nation, which has the right to know, is unjustly deprived of any knowledge about his mental illness, and cannot therefore protect itself from its wretched consequences. Since he cannot comply with this basic requirement of justice, his best option is to vacate his office.

Third objection. This antedates Mamasapano. This partially restates the first objection, with reference to Aquino’s legitimacy, but refers mostly to his crimes against the Constitution as a de facto president. Although most of his critics were initially disposed to grant that he was probably personally incorrupt, the avalanche fell when he personally decided to corrupt Congress by paying them off to enact the anti-life, anti-family, and anti-poor Reproductive Health Law, and to impeach and remove Chief Justice Renato Corona from the Supreme Court. This became crystal clear when it was revealed that 19 of the 20 senators who had voted to convict Corona had received P50 million or more from the hitherto unknown Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP).

Not even the most venal of his predecessors had done anything like it. He became the first president to be known as the chief corruptor of Congress. Having bought Congress, and intimidated the Judiciary, he then imposed one-man rule without need of a martial law proclamation similar to what Marcos issued in 1972 to break the communist insurgency. In a rare show of courage, the Supreme Court struck down the DAP and the Priority Development Assistance Fund as unconstitutional, and directed the prosecution of all those responsible for the manipulation and misuse of the DAP and PDAF. This was roundly ignored. At the same time, the impeachment process became completely useless, as the Congress which has the exclusive power to impeach and try the President became his defense fortress.

Aquino has moved to weaken our country’s moral and spiritual crust But whatever Aquino has done to weaken the nation’s constitutional foundations is nothing compared to what he has done to weaken its moral and spiritual crust. He has claimed powers he does not have in order to wage war on God-fearing Filipinos. Under the cover of darkness, he has unleashed all the powers and forces at his command to propose the legalization of same-sex “marriage,” divorce, adultery, and other devilish practices calculated to scandalize and offend innocent Filipinos.

Indeed, his greatest crime is not that he has sought to reduce the Philippines into a failed state, but that he has done so much in so little time to try to kill the true Christian identity of so many Filipinos. fstatad@gmail.com

26 Responses to The case against Aquino

boying labro says:

April 15, 2015 at 1:10 pm

He is a very dangerous person.. Lahat ng kanyang mga pinaggagawa ay hindi gawa ng matinong Tao dahil halos lahat ay labag ito sa batas ng ating constitution. Tama lang talaga na may sapak sa utak itong presidente na ito. Tulad siya ng mga batang autistic na ang maipilit ay maipilit. Literally he is half cracked mad person. Mentally disorder..

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Ed Noles says:

April 15, 2015 at 12:22 pm

well said Mr.Tatad , perhaps You would like to expose additionally the extraordinary efforts the Lady CJ of the SC is exerting towards favorable decision for PCOS machine, against the will of the judges majority. She is as quoted here in these paper ‘moving heaven and earth” to the apparent dismay of her fellow judges. If we ALLOW THEM TO POISON THE ELECTORAL PROCESS – we ARE GOING BACK TO SQUARE ONE!..,,,,,,,, and these is of national significance than Pacquiao-Mayfeather fight,

G i s i n g. N a. B a y a n……

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Japeth says:

April 15, 2015 at 11:08 am

This Batang Mental should resign now at baka atakihin pa yan ng matindi at lalong magka luko luko ang bansa natin, huwag ng paabutin ng election marami pang katarantahan ang magagawa nyan pag pinagtagal pa yan dyan sa palace.

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Vicente Penetrante says:

April 15, 2015 at 10:19 am

We believe you must have a viable replacement before getting rid of BS Aquino 3rd.

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Alejo Rosete says:

April 15, 2015 at 9:45 am

Thank you so much Senator Tatad – Amen!

Mabuhay ka Mabuhay ang Manila Times

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Abnoy-noyingski says:

April 15, 2015 at 9:11 am

“The good cardinal-archbishop of Manila, whose shoe laces we are not worthy to untie.” Ito ang di ko matatanggap sa sinulat mo ginoong Kit (with due respect sa iyo) at yan ay tutukoy at ang dapat lang patungkulan niyang katagang yan ay ang Panginoong Jesucristo. Lahat tayo ay creatures lamang at walang kapantay si Cristo kahit kanino mang nabuhay dito sa mundo ni ang tinatawag nilang “Pope” kahit sino pa mang Pope ay walang ipapantay sa Panginoong si Jesucristo. Please lang wag naman insultuhin ang Anak ng Dios! Please lang po! Kahit ilang kalag pa ang gawin mo sa sapatos o sandalyas ng kahit sinong Obispo, kahit pagbuluhin mo pa ang sintas ng dalawang sandalyas. Maaaring di mo o ninyo maintindihan ito pero biblical ito. Huwag mong gamiin dito ang katagang yan: NEVER again Please!

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Amnata Pundit says:

April 15, 2015 at 8:59 am

It is said that a problem correctly stated is a problem half solved. All these crimes did not start with this BS, if you will recall. What did the yellows do to congress when they impeached Erap? How different was that from the impeachment of Corona ? How about GMA’s THREE YEARS OF RE-ENACTED BUDGET, shouldn’t that shock every molecule in every Christian’s moral fiber more than the DAP of this BS? You do not have enough fingers and toes to count the crimes committed by the YELLOW REGIME starting with Cory – even starting with Ninoy Aquino when he was senator – against the republic and the people, all of them documented. My point is, to lay the blame on this BS alone will not solve the problem. Replace him with another yellow president and things will remain the same. The solution is not in asking this retardate to resign, short of mounting an armed revolution, it is to OCCUPY COMELEC !

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Anima A. Agrava says:

April 15, 2015 at 7:21 am

tama kayo sir tatad

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Antonio kho says:

April 15, 2015 at 6:33 am

You should have invoked the same reasons during the time of Marcos but you did not. How can you be credible now?

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bubot says:

April 15, 2015 at 8:21 am

Sana Mr. Kit Tatad mag file ka din ng kandita-tura mo para sa Presidente this coming election 2016 at kung panalo ka di siyempre malutas mo ang prolema ng ating bayan Pinas. Sa experience mo naging Minister of Information during Marcos administration at naging Senador sa Pinas ay may maraming buboto sa iyo para candidatura ng Pangulo ng Republika ng Pilipinas.

cris says:

April 15, 2015 at 9:38 am

you’re absolutely right Sir Tony

Leodegardo Pruna says:

April 15, 2015 at 9:45 am

Morality is involved now, before the issues were legally based and it was the court of justice which tried to resolved the issues. God bless the Philippines.

Leodegardo Pruna says:

April 15, 2015 at 9:49 am

Morality is very much involved in the present issues, before it was legal and the courts were mandated to resolve it. God bless our country.

jaime says:

April 15, 2015 at 11:35 am

As if Marcos will listen. Mr. Tatad is just showing how incompetent and dangerous our president based on his decisions.

Ejercito says:

April 15, 2015 at 12:20 pm

weather-weather lang, ‘re. Matagal ng nakalipas iyong panahon ni Makoy, ang KKK’s ng Malakanyang ngayon, iba na. Pero itanong mo ang magiging KKK’s kapag tumuntong sa Malakanyang ay si Bise (yun ang sabi ng Konstitusyon, di ba? Biglang wala si Noyi-noy, eh di biglang pasok si Bise!)

Venerando Desales says:

April 15, 2015 at 5:59 am

So, we have a Filipino anti Christ in our midst?

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Maddflo says:

April 15, 2015 at 5:09 am

A very enlightening commentary. Aquino should really go now! Any minute he rules further is a disaster in waiting. He is not really that honest person even if he does not thieve because: 1. He coddles persons in his cabinet that are allegedly involved in graft and corruption like the three A’s Abad, Abaya and Alcala and Dinky Soliman aside from being incompetent. 2. He corrupts our dirty politicians in Congress using taxpayer’s money in the form of DAP and hidden lump sums. 3. He is lying about what he did during the time our SAF troopers were calling for artillery support, imagine, from morning to late in the afternoon, his mind was invaded by a typhoon Yolanda that he cannot decide on a matter of a principled leader or a statesman whether to save his dying soldiers or to save his peace talk with his BFFs MILF. 4. Until now, he is grieving over the loss of his other BFF Purisima and not of his fallen 44, that he is yet to name a new PNP chief. 5. He could not endorse any of his top men in the Liberal Party because all of them were drag down with him in the latest trust rating survey. Lastly, he is a selfish and a mediocre dirty politician, a totally opposite to London graduate Lee Kwan Yoo of Singapore.

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ed says:

April 15, 2015 at 3:39 am

well said Mr. Tatad.

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Nancy Bulok Cake says:

April 15, 2015 at 1:38 am

And how about the Binays? When are you going to enumerate things that you consider for them to quit their positions and most especially stop stealing the money from the taxpayers. Senator Tatad, can you please say something objective to the corruption of the Binays which is a common knowledge and open secret?

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Rogelio C. Lim says:

April 15, 2015 at 1:20 am

Malaking panganib si Noynoy sa bansa lalo na ngayon malapit na ang 2016 election at pinipilit niya na ipasa ang Babala. Ang nakakatakot ay ang estado ng kanyang kaisipan.

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Reynaldo Casayas says:

April 15, 2015 at 12:50 am

This are indeed a valid points Mr. Kit. Aquino SHOULD resign now before he causeS more damage to the Republic. Belmonte and Drillon shOULD also resign. These are the kind of government officials that serve their personal interestS fiRst instead of the Filipino people.

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Guadalupe says:

April 15, 2015 at 12:44 am

“Indeed, his greatest crime is not that he has sought to reduce the Philippines into a failed state, but that he has done so much in so little time to try to kill the true Christian identity of so many Filipinos.” This is a most eloquent way of re-stating what Pres. Reagan himself said: “a nation that refuses to live under God is sure to be a nation that will go under”.

Take away the Christian identity of a human being and he loses all that matters in his existence. This is indeed the principal crime of the mad dog in Malacanang. No wonder the Abnoy is devoid of any self-respect and decency as a human being. No wonder that he continually fails and up to now continues to bury the country and people into a state of almost every imaginable misery and depredation

Having no mandate at all, and having such dysfunctional mental state, it is really high time that he STEPS DOWN. Every minute that he stays in office is much too dangerous for us..

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Ronaldo Valdes says:

April 15, 2015 at 12:42 am

Lets talk about economy.. Is the Economy better or worse 6 years ago.?? Do we have a better president today or during Estrada and Gloria ?? if your answer is NO .. your lying.. If your answer is yes then Let It go untill we elect a better person in which i doubt if we have one candidate who’s character is unblemished and not corrupt. BUT THE PCOS MACHINE WILL MAKE THEM REIGN FOREVER!

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Maddflo says:

April 15, 2015 at 7:55 am

No. Economy is out of the question because of our growing remittances from OFWs regardless of the effort of the President. but the big question is , is the President done enough to uplift the lots of our majority poor or in other words is it the policy of the state to make the distribution of the nations wealth fair enough for all the its constituents? That’s the point were the Philippine’s economy is very far or it cannot compare to the economies of Korea , Japan, Singapore, Taiwan or the land grabbing Malaysia and China.

Hector David says:

April 15, 2015 at 3:16 pm

What economy? Are our people better off now? Or the oligarchs? The middle class is dying ……wake up

Marcospolo says:

April 15, 2015 at 12:29 am

Tama lang na alisin na si Aquino!ngayon na! At sana wag ng maging negatibo ang tao,kung maalis man si Aquino!dahil walang masamang mangyayari sa bansa! Isang bagay lang na dapat tanggapin ng lahat,si binay ang legal na dapat humalili,at iyan ang nasa constitution, ke ayaw man natin,mas may moralidad at maykarapatan siyang humalili! Liban sa kanya,lahat ay magiging illegal!kaya dapat tanggapin ng sino man,dahil iyan ang tama!


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