Saturday, February 25, 2012

Doy Santos

Doy Santos writes as "The Cusp" on His background is economics so he brings a lot to the table in terms of understanding the mechanisms of wealth generation. Or lack thereof . . .

Hisrecent article challenges those  who are focused on Chief Justice Corona's half-baked SALN (Statement of Assets, Liabilites and Income) to publish their own SALN's in as much detail as they are demanding from the Honorable Corona. The between-the-lines implication is they would be hard-pressed to do that, and would have to modify and re-jig prior SALN's to make the lies in them consistent with the current facts.
I Also read that even President Aquino's SALN history is apparently being reworked to align prior reports with the current one in a way that pretends to tell a forthright story.

But therein is the important point. The point that Mr. Santos never gets to. The bottom line truth that Filipinos either have not discovered. Or deny. Or ignore.

The culture of the Philippines is based on a distorted sense of right and wrong. That is its foundation. And you cannot straighten a crooked road if you insist it is straight the way it is.

This is a culture of favors, of cheating, of power plays. It is a culture of overabundant sensitivity to self and gross insensitivity toward others. It is a culture of blindness to the disciplines of integrity and responsibility. It is a culture of blames and excuses.

Until Filipinos far and wide, including the President and the educators, are candid enough to recognize the social system in which EVERYONE operates for what it is - warped in its sense of right and wrong, largely missing the key element of responsibility, and damaging to Filipinos and the national community - it is fruitless of Mr. Santos or anyone else to point out the flaws of others.

EVERYONE is a part of the problem and trying to blame someone else is just continuing to trudge along the easy road. The hard road would be to start a Civil Liberties Union, or a Tea Party. Take action. But no one takes it. Or no one dares take it. That would be a risky, tangible action in a society that DEMANDS subservient obedience to power and a sneaky, fuzzy, self-serving interpretation of laws.

There is a reason so many people intentionally do not follow civic rules.

Short of the courage to take explicit action, every complainant ought to hitch up his dignity and live his own life according to proper Christian, or Muslim, or other upright values. And see to it that his children do the same. Change the mode of behavior hereabouts from DEFENSE OF SELF (low self-esteem excuse mongering) to EXPLICIT ACTIONS that show acceptance of responsibility and commitment to courteous, honorable living. Like, you know, obey the rules. Hold to a sense of the Golden Rule and treat others fairly and nicely.

Get rid of the notion that I can cheat because everyone else is doing it. My God, do you know what a weak sap it makes you to coast along doing it the easy way, doing it the way that allows your friends to chuckle along with you about how cool you are when you cheat. Easy. Easy. Easy.

Not courageous and disciplined. And for sure not a good example for the kids.

I also hold to an irrational dream that sees the Senate adjourn, with Senator Enrile soberly saying:

"You know ladies and gentlemen, we are all pretending an honorableness here that we aren't living up to. This trial is adjourned until we can sit in judgment as leaders who know the difference between right and wrong . . . and prove it by living the ideals expressed in our words."

This article is not an obnoxious, arrogant point of view from an outsider. It is an extension of Mr. Santos' view all the way to the heart of the matter, without hiding, obfuscating, defending or denying.

I trust that you will exert every effort not prove my point by excusing cheating behavior or blaming me for this attempt at candor. If I'm wrong, simply tell me what the truth is. I am writing what I see and stake no claim to perfect vision.


  1. Everyone knows that the Chief Justice is corrupt. Just like everyone knows that your Barangay Tanods, City Counselors, Mayors, Governors, Congressmen, Senators, all Government Agencies, Law Enforcement, Military and the President are all either corrupt, incompetent or both. I'm all about cleaning up the town, and if I can make a Genie lamp wish, every single one of them will die a slow painful death from incurable Bone Cancer.

    But right now I just can't see myself siding with the President's prosecution team. They're incompetent and all I see and hear from them is stupid TV drama.

    1. Indeed. I had expected more of the prosecution, too. It seems as if they are firing wild shotguns instead of a few well-aimed rifle shots that would prove the point: this guy is not Chief Justice material. I fear all the senators with their own history of shady dealings will let this guy off the hook, thereby confirming the Philippines is the same today as it has been for years.

    2. All I'm saying is if the Senators have to proclaim a guilty verdict at all costs, then we might as well not have an impeachment process.

  2. Predictably, the Get Real crowd has come to the defense of the Chief Justice. That's their modus operandi, whatever Noynoy does they will contradict. They do this because they have a distorted belief that Noynoy is 100% evil while GMA is a saint.

    1. The Get Real people are old-school Filipino to the core. Never able to find an objective ground, only a win/lose, for or against ground.

    2. Get Real Philippines - In other words, trolls :) -patrioticflip

  3. Anon, I agree the President should not be able to "fire" the head of a different branch of state. The question is, is the Supreme Court doing a good job or not? If they are not living up to the highest standards of impartiality and legal knowledge, what can "we the people" do about it. The only avenue is through our representatives, the legislature, and impeachment. In a way, I think many Filipinos are speaking through President Aquino. To the legislature.

  4. Joe,

    Corona's supporters have taken a line lifted from John's gospel - "He who is without sin cast the first stone"- against the prosecution and the senator judges. The thing is we are all sinners and, if we are to believe the bible, Jesus Christ is the only one without sin. Does that mean we should just leave everything in God's hands? No. We have agreed among ourselves that although we are all sinners we still need order in society and we have no choice but to deputize fellow sinners to enforce our laws. We did not go into this agreement blindfolded. We know that law enforced by fellow sinners will never become ideal but it's what we have until we can find something better. And so we live in a world where the cardinal rule is "don't get caught." Having said that, there is nothing that prohibits anybody from trying to live correctly, to live righteously. So I agree with you that the solution is to live right. But I do not subscribe to the view that it is hypocritical for sinful judges to pronounce judgment and to sentence a fellow sinner brought before him because the name of the game as I see it is "don't get caught."

    1. I really dislike judicial ethics hereabouts. The last bastion of an honorable interpretation of right and wrong so abused . . .

    2. Reminds me of the US SC overturning the Florida SC over those hanging ballots. As Robert W. Gordon, Yale University professor of law and legal history wrote: “Judges who are really keen to reach a certain result will reach it, whatever obstacles of precedent or their own principles or past practice may stand in their way."

    3. I realize I hate living in an all-catholic country -patrioticflip.


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