bongbong marcos

How Facebook aides Duterte, Marcos in killing the Truth

Images began to circulate on Facebook about a PHP300,000.00 (US$6,000) check issued to Duterte blogger and now Movie and Television Review and Classification Board member Margaux Uson (publicly known as Mocha Uson). Many of the bank details were redacted like check number and the name of the check’s signatory. Many Netizens were quick to compare the signature to Former Senator Bongbong Marcos, Jr., son of the dictator Ferdinand Marcos. 

The response was swift as a Nazi-German Blitz.

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"Closure"

After more than twenty-five years after the first People Power uprising that sent Ferdinand Marcos and his cronies into exile, the pursuit of justice has ended with the full restoration of the families of the former dictator and his allies.

The aging solon and former street parliamentarian Sen Joker Arroyo was like a lonely voice crying out in the wilderness upon hearing the flacid “lukewarm” remarks of President Aquino in reaction to the Supreme Court ruling favoring his formerly estranged uncle over the government in the case involving about twenty billion pesos (nearly half a billion dollars) worth of shares in San Miguel Corporation one of the country’s biggest conglomerates that he purchased during the dictatorial regime under dubious circumstances.

As often is the case when dealing with ill-gotten wealth of crooks in government who operate in a lawyerly fashion, the labyrinth of transactions make it difficult to pin down the accused. Hiding as they do behind the corporate veil, their ability to weave through the legal system in order to extract wealth from the collective pot contributed by the lowliest in society allows them to go unpunished and even be vindicated by the legal system.

And so as in the case of Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco, Jr. former czar of the coconut industry under Mr Marcos, it appears that the scales of justice have finally tipped in his favor. Having previously lost his case in the anti-graft court the Sandiganbayan, he has won on appeal to the Supreme Court. Not all justices voted to clear him though. The senior ranking dissenter pronounced the majority decision the biggest joke of the century to be visited upon our countrymen.

Indeed. And as for the Marcoses their restoration was cemented in the last election with Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. winning a seat in the upper house from where he probably intends to stage a presidential bid in 2016. A hero’s burial for his father’s remains has been winning support in the lower house. This probably reflects the mood in the wider body politic to forgive the former dictator for his failings. President Aquino himself put this possibility on the agenda by commissioning the vice president to look into it.

During his election campaign, President Aquino said that he wanted to bring some final resolution to the remains of the EDSA I struggle. It appears now what that closure he spoke of means for the victims of the Martial Law and the perpetrators of the injustices under it. Incidentally, it will be interesting to see how the case of Hacienda Luisita Incorporated owned and run by the Aquino-Cojuangco clans but subjected to agrarian reform will be handled by this Supreme Court. Will the final ruling there bring about “closure” to that case as it has in this instance? Would that be the final form of appeasement between the rivaling factions that have governed our country for so long (and will continue to in the foreseeable future)?

For those who joined the struggle to restore democracy to the nation like Sen Joker Arroyo, it will grate them to see the very liberties and freedoms they fought and paid for with their blood, sweat and tears being adroitly used by those who formerly suppressed them to frustrate the cause of those who suffered under their foul treatment, to have history re-written, to find the same legal minds that defended their tormentors receiving honor and prestige, occupying positions of power and authority, and for their countrymen to look on indifferently.

Unfortunately, this is probably how the cause of freedom will end: not with a bang, but a whimper.

The Daily Roundup: 23 February 2011

EDSA1 icons urge Filipinos to carry torch of freedom

Key players of the EDSA Revolution in 1986 have urged the Filipino people not to waste the legacy of People Power and to carry on the nation’s dreams for genuine democracy and freedom.

Former President Fidel V. Ramos, who was Armed Forces vice-chief during EDSA 1, said the uprising is one of the several people’s struggles for independence, freedom, and a respectable place in the community of nations.

Ramos said EDSA 1 should be revered like the 1896 revolution against the Spaniards and the revolution against American colonialism.

Read more at ABS-CBN News

Marcos son: We did not leave, we were taken away” by TJ Burgonio

While some were caught up in rites marking the anniversary of the 1986 EDSA People Power Revolution that toppled strongman Ferdinand Marcos, Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. Tuesday showed up for work by attending a hearing.

In his calendar, Feb. 22—the start of the four-day people’s revolt that ended the strongman’s 20-year-long reign and forced him into exile in Hawaii—is just a regular day in the Senate.

But that is not to say that the event holds no meaning for the younger Marcos.

Read more at Philippine Daily Inquirer

Government-NDF peace deal seen in 2012

by AP, Delon Porcalla, Jose Rodel Clapano, Ding Cervantes, Alexis Romero

Government negotiators and communist rebels agreed Monday on a road map for continued peace talks aimed at resolving Asia’s longest-running insurgency by June 2012.

Ending the first round of long-stalled peace negotiations in Norway, the two sides agreed to meet again in April and every two months after that.

“Tonight finds us on the zigzag path to peace,” government chief negotiator Alex Padilla said. “But we have taken the first step.”

He said the government expects the comprehensive agreement on socio-economic reforms to be signed by September 2011, on political and constitutional reforms by February 2012, and on the end of hostilities and disposition of forces between June and August 2012.

Read more at The Philippine Star

Cheerleading?” by Benjamin E. Diokno

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Amando Tetangco was quoted as saying that the Philippine economy could expand by 7% to 8% this year, or faster than the 35-year record growth of 7.3% in 2010. Going against the consensus forecast of 5% GDP growth this year, I do not understand the source of Tetangco’s optimism. How much of it is pure cheerleading and how much of it is based on solid, empirical facts?

The optimistic forecast goes against even the administration’s own GDP growth forecast of 5% for revenue forecasting purposes, as indicated in the 2011 Budget of Expenditures and Sources of Financing.

Read more at Business World

Oil contingency plan readied” by Emilia Narni J. David

CONTINGENCY PLANS are being reviewed by the Energy department as world oil prices surge due to continued civil unrest in the Arab world.

The announcement came as violence in Libya — the third biggest oil producer in North Africa — escalated, disrupting some supply and prompting concerns at an energy conference in Saudi Arabia, the leading exporter.

Oil markets this week topped $108, their highest in around two and a half years, over fears that the wave of popular revolts in Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region — which holds some 60% of the world’s oil — would spread.

Prices, however, remain well below the all-time high of $147 per barrel hit in July 2008 and yesterday officials of Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) member states said supply remained plentiful.

Read more at Business World

Rate-hike option hard to resist” by Jun Vallecera

THE trend of rising inflation not just in the Philippines but across the region should soon push the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to raise interest rates by a total 125 basis points this year, the British-owned lender Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) said on Tuesday.

SCB head of research Nicholas Kwan believes the changes would be phased adjustments likely to start next month as he sees inflation in the Philippines ranging from 4.5 percent to 4.8 percent during the year, which means the rate at which the BSP borrows from banks should move from 4 percent at present to 5.25 percent by the end of the year.

Read more at Business Mirror

Romulo stepping down as DFA chief” by Estrella Torres

FOREIGN Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo steps down from his post today amid months of speculations that he will be replaced soon following serious clashes on foreign-policy directions with career diplomats and accusations of frequent trips with family members.

Philippine Ambassador to the US Alberto del Rosario will be taking his place as chief diplomat, a development welcomed by insiders at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

Romulo is expected to relinquish his post to del Rosario in simple rites today, but the DFA refused to disclose the venue.

Read more at Business Mirror

Palace to pursue its version of RH bill” by Cris G. Odronia

MALACAÑANG would continue crafting its own version of reproductive health (RH) bill despite the suspension of talks with the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) on reproductive health, an official said Tuesday.

During a briefing in Malacañang, spokesman Edwin Lacierda said the Palace remains hopeful that the CBCP officials would return to the dialogue, but he said the government could not wait for the bishops.

“We are hopeful that they will comeback but we cannot wait for the bishops because it seemed like an indefinite suspension. Again, we are hopeful that they would reconsider,” he said.

Read more at Manila Times

Batanes kids get the most of teachers” by Ronnel Domingo

Public school students in Batanes enjoy the greatest attention from teachers and the least crowded classrooms in the country, data from the National Statistical Coordination Board show.

NSCB Secretary General Romulo A. Virola said in a report issued Tuesday that the teacher-pupil ratio in Batanes’ state-run elementary schools was 1:11 as of the school year 2009-2010. As for public high schools, a teacher in Batanes watches over an average of 12 students.

In terms of classroom-pupil ratios, Batanes elementary schools had 13 pupils to a classroom while high schools had 18 students to a classroom.

Read more at Philippine Daily Inquirer