THE PSYCHOPATH’S SYCOPHANTS (Part 1)

Psychopath – (noun) a person with antisocial personality disorder manifested in aggressive, perverted, criminal, or amoral behavior without empathy or remorse, in extreme egocentricity, in failure to learn from experience, etc. Psychopaths tend to lack normal human emotions such as guilt. They also lack the ability to love or establish meaningful personal relationships. They are often highly intelligent and skilled at manipulating others.

Sycophant – (noun) a person who acts obsequiously toward someone important in order to gain advantage; a servile self-seeking flatterer.

 

Power could be such a potent motivation that people are willing to go to great lengths to possess it — or even to get close to it. It is no wonder, therefore, that when Duterte won the presidency, opportunists of all colors and sizes huddled up close to and swarmed Malacanang.

Just like flies would to manure.

Many members of the opposition readily deserted their respective sinking ships and jumped into that of the PDP-Laban, which was fast getting jam-packed with the other political chameleons.

New alliances and coalitions between other political parties and the president’s party were formed.

People who supported and worked for Duterte’s campaign saw it as the perfect opportunity to collect and reap the benefits of being a loyal boot and ass licker.

Those closest to him, meanwhile, elbowed their way through the burgeoning crowd to secure the meatiest positions available.

Needless to say, their efforts paid off.

Despite Duterte’s initial pronouncement that he will get only the best and the brightest people because “the Filipinos deserved nothing less,” he went on an appointing spree (with their contribution to his campaign as the main qualification for the selection of those appointees) weeks before he was proclaimed the election winner.

The following are some of the President’s political appointees. Together, let us know them a little better and see if, indeed, their connection to the Palace was not their only credential to their current positions. We will also take a peek at what they have managed to bring to the table thus far.

 

Aguirre (1)

 

DOJ Sec. Vitaliano Aguirre II. He was the legal counsel of Hubert Webb in the celebrated Vizconde massacre case; the former lawyer of Sen. Lacson and Ramon Tulfo; the deputy counsel who conducted the direct examinations of now Sen. Trillanes and the other Magdalo members during the investigation of the 2003 Oakwood Mutiny; Duterte’s fraternity brother in San Beda and his lawyer when he was linked to the Davao Death Squad by then CHR Commissioner Leila De Lima; the defense lawyer of retired SP04 Bienvenido Laud (the owner of the quarry in Davao believed to have been the burial ground of the DDS victims); the founder and president of the Brotherhood for Duterte Movement; and the controversial target of the late Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago’s ire during the Corona impeachment trial. (Yes, Aguirre and the Hear-No-Evil lawyer are one and the same.)

When Aguirre was appointed by then presumptive Pres. Duterte to head the DOJ, the latter’s orders were quite specific: “Focus on illegal drugs, graft and corruption and heinous crimes, and file appropriate charges no matter who gets hurt.”

After only a year at the helm of the Justice department, Aguirre has already figured in a plethora of controversies.

The government’s drug war has already killed thousands, many of which were perpetrated by unidentified masked men, yet no single killer has been held legally accountable. Amid the international community, the Catholic Church and the human rights advocates’ resounding call for accountability and end to the killings, the Dep’t. of Justice has remained deafeningly silent.

Aguirre used 12 convicted felons (all of whom were granted immunity and witness protection, while 5 of whom have had pending applications for pardon or clemency) to testify against Sen. De Lima during a congressional probe on the Senator’s alleged involvement in the drug trade at the National Bilibid Prison. (Said felons were reportedly granted certain perks and privileges in exchange for their testimonies.) At the same public hearing, he threatened to present sex videos allegedly of De Lima and Dayan “to establish their relationship.” He also released fake BDO deposit slips to further implicate De Lima. During presscons and interviews even before a single case against De Lima was filed before a court of law, he found great joy in destroying the Senator’s reputation by accusing her of being the country’s biggest drug lord — an action that utterly ran counter to what a judicious Justice Secretary should be.

To date, Peter Lim is still as free as a bird despite PDEA and Kerwin Espinosa’s separate testimonies that the presidential friend is a bigtime drug lord. (Lim has been, in fact, named by no less than the President himself in his drug matrix as among the top-tier drug lords operating in the country.) Just recently, DOJ downgraded the murder charge against the 19 policemen involved in the rubout of Mayor Rolando Espinosa. (Ex-CIDG Chief Supt. Marvin Marcos, the team leader, has long been involved in illegal drugs, according to PNP Chief Dela Rosa.) Both of these despite the administration’s controversial War on Drugs.

It is also on his watch when the bloody raid (eyewitnesses assert that it was a massacre, not a raid) against the Parojinogs of Ozamiz City took place. Amid claims of irregularities in the execution of the operation, and a clamor to look deeper into the incident that resulted to the death of 15 people, the DOJ thru its constituent agency, the National Bureau of Investigation, has been conspicuously quiet. Yet again.

Aguirre has the uncanny habit of parroting Duterte’s statements. According to him, the killings of thousands of drug suspects and criminals may not be considered crimes against humanity because those drug suspects and criminals are not humans. Duterte has been repeatedly heard making the same statement.

The DOJ Sec. and the gambling mogul Jack Lam had a private meeting at some hotel room hours before a P50-million bribe/extortion money changed hands from Lam’s camp to Aguirre’s. The DOJ Sec. was even quoted telling an ex-BI official who was with him at that meeting, “Ikaw na ang bahala diyan” before leaving the room. Two BI officials (both are Duterte’s frat brothers and appointees) were implicated for extortion, while both Aguirre and Lam walked away scot-free.

He earned the title “The King of Fake News” after exposing to the media that some opposition lawmakers, in connivance with some Moro clans, were behind the Marawi clashes. He even used a photo (which turned out to be an old one) to support his claim. Before that, he also accused former Sen. Jamby Madrigal, along with a Laguna solon, of allegedly trying to bribe the inmates who testified against De Lima to recant their testimonies. He once accused Sen. Trillanes, moreover, of having benefited from the PDAF scam with Napoles. All claims were eventually proven to be baseless, malicious and outright lies. Sen. Grace Poe lambasted Aguirre for “propagating fake news like a troll,” while the NUJP called him a “mean-spirited coward” for blaming the media for his blunders following Aguirre’s yet another claim that he was just being misquoted by the media.

He is also among the 11 government officials tagged in the criminal complaint filed against Duterte at the International Criminal Court at The Hague, Netherlands.

 

For the succeeding parts of this article, we shall get better acquainted with these other notable Duterte sycophants:

POLITICAL APPOINTEES (continuation)

  1. PNP Chief Director Gen. Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa
  2. Solicitor Gen. Jose Calida
  3. Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella
  4. Budget Sec. Benajamin Diokno
  5. Finance Sec. Carlos Dominguez III
  6. Foreign Affairs Sec. Alan Peter Cayetano
  7. Presidential Chief Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo
  8. Tourism Sec. Wanda Tulfo-Teo
  9. Communications Sec. Martin Andanar
  10. PCOO Assistant Sec. Mocha Uson
  11. Bureau of Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon
  12. DSWD Assistant Sec. Lorraine Badoy
  13. Ambassador to the UN Teddy Boy Locsin Jr.
  14. Tourism Promotions Board COO Cesar Montano

ELECTED OFFICIALS

  1. House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez
  2. Senate Pres. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III
  3. Senate Blue Ribbon Committee Chair Richard “Dick”Gordon
  4. Senate Ethics Committee Chair Vicente “Tito” Sotto III
  5. Senator Manny Pacquiao
  6. House Majority Floor Leader Rodolfo Farinas
  7. House Justice Committee Chair Reynaldo Umali
  8. Kabayan Party List Rep. Harry Roque

NGO

  1. Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC)
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A GLIMPSE AT THE PRESIDENT’S FIRST YEAR IN MALACANANG

Indeed, time flies so fast. Isang taon na pala ang lumipas since Duterte took his oath last June 30, 2016 as our country’s 16th president.

Ayon sa kanyang inaugural speech, “Malasakit. Tunay na Pagbabago. Tinud-anay nga Kausaban (Compassion. Real change.) – these are words which catapulted me to the presidency. [But] these slogans were conceptualized not for the sole purpose of securing the votes of the electorate. Far from that. These were battle cries articulated by me in behalf of the people hungry for genuine and meaningful change.”

 

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Duterte and his children during the inauguration ceremony

Real Change.

‘Yan ang pangako n’ya when he was still campaigning.

‘Yan ang ikinondisyon n’ya sa utak nating lahat na kailangan ng bansa.

‘Yan ang pinaniwalaan ng 16,601,997 Pilipino na bumoto sa kanya.

‘Yan ang inasahan at patuloy na inaasahan natin mula sa kanya at sa kanyang administrasyon.

After 365 days in Malacanang, masasabi ba natin that the President was able to deliver on his promised change? Or have we all been taken for a ride?

C’mon, let’s find out by looking back at his first year in Malacanang!

 

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the pile of bodies under Duterte’s War on Drugs

 

Duterte’s “War on Drugs” is a subject of worldwide condemnation

Under the present administration’s bloody all-out war against drugs, thousands are killed in just a span of one year. Oplan Tokhang, the anti-illegal drugs program of the PNP, is said to be unconstitutional and violative of basic human rights – the formulation of the drug watch list (prepared by the local government officials, inclusion therein can be based on hearsay, rumor, rivalry or mere alliance with a drug offender –with little or no verification), the surrender forms (which provide only two choices –to confess as either a drug addict or a drug pusher, or to not sign at all, which could lead to deadly consequences), and the operation itself (cops routinely busting down doors in the middle of the night and then killing unarmed drug suspects in cold blood; cops stealing from the victims’ homes; cops planting evidence; and cops falsifying incident or spot reports). This government campaign has also encouraged, if not sponsored, killings perpetrated by motorcycle-riding masked men. According to Amnesty International, Duterte’s War on Drugs has created an economy of murder in the country and is, in fact, a war on the poor. Due to the internal cleansing that the PNP administered in the wake of the Jee Ick-joo controversy, the campaign was temporarily suspended. It has now made a comeback, though, under the new name, “Oplan Double Barrel, Reloaded” which, according to Gen. Bato Dela Rosa, will be more extensive, aggressive and well-coordinated.

 

Pork Barrel has made a comeback

Under the 2017 National Budget, a Congressman gets an annual allocation of P80 million while a Senator gets P200 million. The SC ruling specifically prohibited the post-enactment intervention of members of Congress in the national budget. To effectively go around that ruling, Congressmen were asked to submit a list of projects before Malacanang had to present the National Expenditure Program (NEP) to Congress. Under PNoy’s Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), members of the Congress were making postenactment identification of projects, while under Duterte’s PDAF, everything is done preenactment or during the budget preparation. Budget preparation should be the domain of the executive branch. When the legislature is asked to participate in it, the whole exercise could easily open doors to patronage and corruption. Meanwhile, the House leadership claimed that “they are just exercising their power of the purse.”

 

An identified drug lord is set free

According to the NBI, the Cebu-based businessman Peter Lim is the same Peter Lim that Kerwin Espinosa implicated in his senate hearing testimony as one of the top 3 drug lords operating in the country. That Peter Lim is also the same person who went to Malacanang to meet with his kumpadre, Pres. Duterte. After that meeting, he walked out of the palace, unscathed, and is now believed to have fled the country with his family.

 

Ex-Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is an innocent woman

The $329.48-million ZTE broadband network scam. The ₱728-million fertilizer scam. The Jose Pidal bank accounts. The Northrail project. The $14-million IMPSA power plant project. The ₱1.3-billion poll automation project. The Macapagal Boulevard project.

According to IBON Foundation, Gloria Arroyo may actually be “the most corrupt president the country has ever had, based on amounts lost to the Filipino people in just six corruption scandals over her seven years in office.” A few days after Duterte’s inauguration as the President of the country, Arroyo has been released from her hospital detention. She is now a free woman –sans the neck brace and wheel chair–, representing Pampanga’s second district at the House of Representatives.

 

Rampant Human Rights violations

Human Rights Watch, an international non-governmental organization that conducts research and advocacy on human rights, accuses and holds Pres. Duterte and other senior officials responsible for being directly behind the killings of mostly poor, urban people. It also alleged the National Police forces of “working in tandem with masked gunmen — casting doubt on the government’s claims that the majority of killings have been committed by vigilantes or rival drug gangs.”

 

The execution by CIDG operatives of Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. and another inmate, and the downgrading of charges against the perps

According to the result of the NBI’s investigation and of the probe of the Senate Committee on Public Order, the late Albuera mayor was a victim of a rubout, and not of a shootout as claimed by the raiding team. Police Supt. Marvin Marcos, the raiding team leader, was relieved by Gen. Bato following reports of the former’s involvement in drug operations. However, Marcos was ordered reinstated by no less than the President himself a few days before the rubout. Despite the glaring evidence against the team, though, DOJ recently downgraded the charges against the perps from murder to homicide. Marcos and his men are now out on bail.

 

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the clandestine burial of Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani

 

Ferdinand Marcos is now a hero

The world’s second most corrupt leader in history under whose dictatorial rule, the country saw the darkest and most oppressive days, is now buried at the hallowed grounds of the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani. Ferdinand Marcos is the best president this country has ever had, according to Pres. Duterte.

 

The Vice-Pres. is humiliated, at every turn, by her president

Duterte once said that the inappropriate jokes he makes during speeches about VP Leni are necessary to make his audience laugh. He used to tease her about her relationship status, the short skirt she once wore during a cabinet meeting, and her nice knees and legs that he and another cabinet member ogled. However, the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back was when the president instructed Robredo (via text!) to desist from attending all future cabinet meetings.

 

The Vit Aguirre-Jack Lam rendezvous

The DOJ Sec. and the gambling mogul had a private meeting at some hotel room hours before a P50-million bribe/extortion money changed hands from Lam’s camp to Aguirre’s. Aguirre was even quoted telling an ex-Bureau of Immigration official who was with him at that meeting, “Ikaw na ang bahala diyan” before leaving the room. Two BI officials (both are Duterte and Aguirre’s frat brothers and presidential appointees) were implicated for extortion, while both Aguirre and Lam walked away scot-free.

 

Slashed budget for calamity funds

Under the 2017 ₱3.35 trillion National Budget that Pres. Duterte signed, only ₱15.7 billion is allocated for the Calamity Fund. This is ₱23-billion lower than the ₱38.9 billion allocation in 2016 under the Aquino administration. In stark contrast, the Office of the President gets a whopping ₱20 billion allocation —a ₱17 billion jump from its 2016 budget.

 

Camp Crame is now Camp Crime

Under the present administration, South Korean businessman Jee Ick-joo was abducted and robbed by policemen and, eventually, murdered inside Camp Crame, the PNP headquarters. Jee (along with at least 11 more) is said to be a victim of Tokhang for ranson.

 

The death of Project NOAH

The country’s primary disaster risk reduction and management program will be shut down because the government cannot provide additional funding to ensure the extended implementation of its existing programs. Thanks to the University of the Philippines’ decision to adopt Project Noah, a new lease on life will be given to the project that has been a lifesaver for millions of Filipinos. Project NOAH was named in August 2016 as the Top Smart City Initiative for Public Safety in the IDC Smart City Asia Pacific Awards.

 

The near-collapse of peace talks between the government and the communist rebels

Another one of Duterte’s promises is the immediate release of all the political prisoners.  The communist rebels had no reason to doubt the president’s sincerity. After all, Duterte was openly identifying himself as a socialist and leftist. He also maintained close links with the NDF and NPA when he was still the mayor of Davao. But after the 19 NDFP peace consultants who participated in the first round of peace talks in Norway were freed, no other political prisoners were set free. The more than 400 remaining prisoners, according to the President, will stay behind bars. They will serve as his “last card” in the peace negotiations with the NDFP, he said —a statement that caused a rift in the two parties’ relationship and eventually led to Duterte’s orders to scrap the negotiations and to arrest the “spoiled-brat Reds” who joined the peace talks.

 

The ongoing election protest of Bongbong Marcos

The Supreme Court, acting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), is moving forward with the case after ruling that Marcos’ election protest is sufficient in both form and substance. As service fees for the contested precincts, Marcos has been ordered to pay P66.2 million while Robredo P15.7 million. Historically, it takes around 4 years for the PET to resolve electoral protests.

 

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a mugshot of Sen. Leila de Lima taken after her arrest

 

Sen. De Lima is arrested and thrown in jail

Pres. Duterte publicly accused the senator of having extorted money from the bigtime drug lords in Bilibid to finance her senatorial bid. When the administration could not find a speck of evidence that might hold water in court, they made do with the conflicting testimonies of a handful of Bilibid convicts and an old lover scorned (all of whom, like Duterte, have a score to settle with De Lima). This is believed to be an apparent effort to silence his most vocal and tenacious critic and to make an example out of her for the benefit of the other government officials who maintain an adversarial position on various government policies and programs.

 

Senators who vocally oppose the administration are stripped of their key posts

With the clear intent to marginalize, alienate and, eventually, silence the officials who dare question or even show resistance to the administration’s programs and policies, Senators Franklin Drilon, Bam Aquino, Kiko Pangilinan and Risa Hontiveros were ousted from their top Senate posts and committee chairmanships. Said senators have been outspoken with their opposing positions regarding major issues such as extrajudicial killings, the burial of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, the lowering of the age of criminal liability, the re-imposition of the death penalty, and the re-opening of the Senate investigation on the Davao Death Squad. A few months earlier, Sen. De Lima was also ousted from her Justice committee chairmanship.

 

The country is considered a major money-laundering hub

According to the 2017 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report by the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, the Philippines is now “a major hub for money laundering and a gateway for transnational drug trafficking due to the loopholes and limitations in the banking system and the lack of jurisdiction of the Anti-Money Laundering Council over financial transactions.”

 

Higher monthly pension for SSS pensioners and Higher monthly premiums for all SSS members

To finance another of Pres. Duterte’s campaign promises of a ₱2,000 across-the-board increase in the monthly pension of SSS pensioners (the implementation of which would seriously compromise or could even result to the eventual bankruptcy of the said benefit system – the very reason why the Aquino administration vetoed it, in the first place), SSS was forced to resort to the alternative solution of increasing the monthly premiums of its active members.

 

The DFA Chief could be jailed for perjury

During a Commission on Appointments hearing, Foreign Affairs Sec. Perfecto Yasay, Jr. declared under oath that he was never an American citizen. A document he himself provided to CA, however, told a completely different story. According to said document, Yasay was granted US citizenship on November 26, 1986 and had it renounced on June 28, 2016, a few days before he took over his current appointive position.

 

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Gina Lopez during the final hearing held by the Commission on Appointments

 

The Commission on Appointment’s rejection of Gina Lopez

Gina Lopez is one of Duterte’s appointees that could have effected real change in the country with her unwavering advocacy for the protection of the environment. Her appointment, however, was rejected by the powerful bicameral CA. Duterte attributed CA’s decision to the power of lobby money.

 

The reimposition of death penalty

Despite our flawed and corrupt judicial and law-enforcement systems, the Duterte administration deems it best to revive capital punishment to support their anti-drug campaign. To make the bill “palatable” to more lawmakers, however, a number of crimes were removed from the proposed bill. These crimes include plunder (the amassing by a public official of ill-gotten wealth worth over ₱50 million), treason and rape. Under the new law, a poor 9-year-old child exploited to commit a drug-related crime might find himself on death row, while an elected official who would steal millions –shamelessly, wantonly and insatiably—from the public coffers but would be defended by a top-notch trial lawyer, could walk away as a Congresswoman!

 

The Lowering of the minimum age of criminal responsibility from 15 to 9 years old

Instead of strengthening the current Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act (RA 9344), providing more resources for the government agencies and local government units to effectively rehabilitate children in conflict with the law, and imposing stiffer penalties on parents who neglect their children and on those who exploit them to commit crimes, as Ifugao lawmaker Teodoro Baguilat suggested, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and his cohorts in Congress believe that meting out stringent punishment to children as young as 9 years old would result to a dramatic drop in the country’s criminality rate. The said measure, which is aligned with the Duterte administration’s war on drugs, is believed to be anti-poor, a blatant violation of our commitment to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and has the potential to permanently damage the children concerned.

 

Chinese installations in the West Philippine Sea

Pres. Duterte did not ride a jet ski to plant our flag on the highly-contested Spratly islands just as he promised during the campaign. Instead, he went to China to kiss the ass of Chinese Pres. Xi Jinping by declaring for everyone to hear that, along with Russia and China, there are now three of us against the world. It didn’t matter one iota that China is the source of most of the illegal drugs in the Philippines. And now, apparently, it doesn’t matter either that the world’s biggest bully-nation is almost done with its project of building 7 artificial islands in the West Philippine Sea and putting on them two dozen concrete structures that “appear designed to house long-range surface-to-air missiles.” Last year, China had already built military-length airstrips on Spratly Islands. All these happened despite the Hague tribunal’s ruling on the Philippines- China dispute over the West Philippines Sea. Just recently, China was reported to have been undertaking a “secret undersea exploration” in the Benham Rise area. (Benham Rise is a 13-million-hectare undersea region believed to be fuel-rich and was awarded to the Philippines by the United Nations in 2012.) Duterte revealed that he had a prior agreement with China regarding the said exploration — an “agreement” that his DND Secretary, apparently, was not privy to. Previously, Chinese survey ships were also seen off Scarborough Shoal and Reed Bank surveying the seabed for possible mineral deposits.

 

The inclusion of archrivals Duterte and De Lima in TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World

Duterte’s supporters rejoiced when the popular President topped the readers’ poll for this annual list. Their joy was short-lived, though, when they learned that the name of Sen. Leila De Lima somehow found its way to the prestigious list. Duterte was listed under the Leaders category, while De Lima under the Icons. The write-up on Duterte was assigned to and written by Cesar Gaviria, the former Colombian president that Duterte called stupid for criticizing his war on drugs. The write-up on De Lima, on the other hand, was penned by Samantha Power, a Pulitzer Prize winner and former US Ambassador to the UN.

 

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Mocha Uson’s appointment as the PCOO Assistant Secretary

 

Mocha is now a legit source of information

With almost 5 million highly-engaged Facebook followers that take her every word as gospel truth, Mocha Uson has strategically marketed herself as the most powerful voice of the Die-hard Duterte Supporters (DDS). Her position of influence has been cemented when Philippine Star gave her her own column, when DZRH gave her a tv show, and when the president gave her a government position. So when she shares fake news or links from dubious sources, or posts alternative facts, or incites online fights, who is to stop her gullible followers from following her lead? No one, but her boss PCOO Sec. Martin Andanar came up with a brilliant piece of advice: Uson should hire page managers for her blog. Hopefully, we won’t shoulder that extra expense. Uson’s monthly salary of more than P106,000 (plus allowances and bonuses) is already hard to accept, as it is.

 

SolGen seeks the reversal of the Pork Barrel Queen conviction

Solicitor Gen. Jose Calida recommended the acquittal of Janet Lim Napoles for the crime of serious illegal detention of whistle-blower Benhur Luy — a move that the president fully supports. Napoles’ three lawyers (Stephen David, Lanee Cui-David and Bruce Rivera) happen to be staunch supporters of Pres. Duterte. Malacanang earlier said that it is possible to turn Napoles into a state witness if she is found to be the least guilty among those involved in the controversial Pork Barrel scam.

 

Lower personal income taxes but Higher excise taxes

As part of Pres. Duterte’s many campaign promises, Filipinos earning P250,000 and below will enjoy a tax break. However, to compensate for the loss in the government revenue that that measure would entail, higher excise taxes on petroleum products, automobiles and sugar-sweetened beverages, and VAT on lease of residential units, sale of real property and in electric cooperatives will be implemented. Note that the net effect of all these additional taxes (increase in the prices of basic commodities, meds, fares, housing, etc.) would far outweigh the impact of the lowering of personal income taxes.

 

Duterte’s foreign trips that cost thrice more than his predecessors’

The government spent at least P386.2 million of taxpayers’ money on the President’s 21 foreign trips during his first year in power. (Said figure does not include the cost of his last 4 trips – to Cambodia, Hong Kong, China and Russia). Former Pres. Fidel Ramos called Duterte’s Russian trip a junket because of the countless free riders. Aside from the 16 (out of 23) cabinet secretaries and around 300 businessmen, also spotted in the trip were Gen. Bato Dela Rosa and his wife, the Commanding Generals of all three major service commands (the army, navy and air force), former MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino, actors Robin and Rommel Padilla, Phillip Salvador, Cesar Montano, Sandra Cam, concert producer Bernard Cloma, Mocha Uson and his manager Byron Cristobal, and presidential son Baste.

 

The declaration of Martial Law over the entire Mindanao

Despite the AFP and the Presidential Spokesperson’s repeated initial statements that the situation in Marawi was stabilized and that the AFP had the situation under control, Duterte declared Martial Law for the whole Mindanao. Even Atty. Christian Monsod, one of the framers of our Constitution, believes that declaring a State of Emergency “would have been sufficient to address the situation in Marawi” as “there was no proof that the skirmishes were part of a concerted effort affecting the entire Mindanao.”

 

The abuse of the internet to spread lies and create dissension

With the dramatic growth in the number of internet users in the country, the candidates in the last national elections saw and capitalized on the great potential of influence that social media could wield among the voters. The cyberspace has become a free-for-all battleground. We have all seen (and have even been victims of) the rise of paid trolls and propagandists, rabid cult followers, perverts, and merciless savages on the internet.

 

The revision of history

Intent on reclaiming lost glory and power, the Marcos family, their die-hard loyalists and shameless cronies launched a deliberate, premeditated and systematic campaign to revise the country’s history. Through clever deception, half-truths and outright lies, they managed to delude more than 14 million Filipinos (the number of votes he was able to secure during his Vice-Presidential bid) into thinking that Martial Law, as we knew it, never existed. It didn’t hurt their cause that Pres. Duterte openly paves the way for the family’s comeback to Malacanang (Click this to read their arguments and claims and how best to quash them.)

 

The desensitization of the Filipino people

We used to pride ourselves for being Asia’s most predominantly Christian country, but with the phenomenal rise of the internet and Duterte’s ascension to the presidency, we have shown the world that we, as a nation, have grown apathetic, callous even, in dealing with the various social and political issues plaguing our country today. Also, the use of demeaning labels, such as Dutertards and Yellowtards, has become alarmingly familiar.

 

The demise of diplomacy and integrity among government officials

When our honorable Congressmen contemplated and almost allowed the showing of a sex video in the Lower House, when the House Speaker threatened –and actually acted on that threat — Congressmen to strip them of their House leadership titles if they oppose the bills the administration is pushing, when the opposition senators were stripped of their key Senate posts and committee chairmanship positions, when PCOO Sec. Martin Andanar called the anti-Marcos protesters “temperamental brats,” and when Duterte’s appointive officials get into the habit of hurling unsubstantiated accusations, misleading allegations and irresponsible statements to cover their boss’ ass, well, we know that the country is in deep trouble.

 

The dismissal of the impeachment complaint filed against Duterte

The members of the House Justice Committee unanimously voted that the impeachment case filed by Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano against Pres. Duterte was sufficient in form but insufficient in substance. Impeachment is considered both a political exercise and a numbers game, and since Duterte maintains a stronghold at the Lower House, with at least 267 out of the 293 lawmakers as his allies, no impeachment complaint against him is expected to prosper.

 

The Resorts World Manila attack that left in its wake 38 casualties and at least 54 injured

The attack, perpetrated by a lone gunman, showed Gen. Bato Dela Rosa’s thirst for media exposure. It was a developing situation at the time yet he was providing updates –which turned out to be unverified reports—to the media. According to him, the gunman was Caucasian (Jessie Carlos was Filipino who used to work in the Dep’t. of Finance), was killed by government troops (he was wounded in a firefight with the casino’s in-house security before he burned and shot himself), that no one got hurt except for those who suffered minor injuries due to the stampede (37 died due to suffocation), and that a member of the casino’s security accidentally shot himself in panic (a Resorts World official denied such incident). He later urged the public to stop spreading unverified information. Bato is such a clown.

 

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the filing of complaints against Duterte at the ICC

 

The filing of a criminal case against Duterte before the ICC

Atty. Jude Sabio, Edgar Matobato’s lawyer, went to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands where he accused Duterte of being a mass murderer. “The lawyer claimed that Duterte has been waging mass murders constituting crime against humanity from his term as mayor of Davao City under his Davao Death Squad to the present after assuming the presidency through his bloody drug war.” Also included in the complaint are 11 of Duterte’s senior administration officials.

Just a month after, Sen. Trillanes and Congressman Alejano also flew to The Hague to file a supplemental communication against Duterte. They cited the unabated and systematic killings in the country and Duterte’s declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao as compelling reasons for the ICC Prosecutor to conduct a preliminary investigation on the situation in the Phils.

 

Senate Pres. Pimentel and eight other senators flew to France to repair the PH-EU ties

Amid Duterte’s repeated verbal attacks against the EU, his rejection of its $278.7-million grant, and his arrogant statement that we can survive without EU’s assistance, nine of our honorable senators decided to use taxpayers’ money to fix the relationship between the powerful union and the Philippines. Said effort and expenses could have easily been avoided if only the President learned how to control his dirty mouth.

 

Positive economic momentum, Volatility of the stock market, and Peso depreciation

In 2016, the economy grew by 6.8% — a stellar performance that economists attribute to the stable and fast-growing economy that the previous administration turned over to Duterte. According to them, the positive momentum will carry us through 2017, but beyond that, certain factors – the success or failure of the implementation of Duterte’s 10-point socioeconomic agenda, the country’s political stability, Trump’s America First policy, etc. — will ultimately dictate our fate.

Last year, the Semiconductors and Electronics Industry in the Philippines (SEIPI) reported that orders amounting to $50 million were lost to one company when President Duterte made angry statements directed at the former POTUS Obama in connection with the latter’s criticisms of the Duterte government’s war on illegal drugs.

Meanwhile, our peso continues to weaken and, at its present 50.51 Ph₱ = 1 US$ exchange rate, it is now at its lowest level in a decade. The peso shed 5.2%, making it the worst performing currency in Southeast Asia last year. This peso devaluation, that earned for our currency the title “Asia’s Ugly Duckling of the Year,” has a domino effect.

  • Higher government debt-servicing
  • Higher cost of foreign goods and services
  • Inflation in the prices of domestic products
  • Soaring oil prices

http://www.doh.gov.ph/node/6750

 

Duterte’s unexplained and prolonged absences  

The President admitted, albeit grudgingly, to going to Guangzhou, China during the New Year holidays for a medical visit. He, again, went into some sort of unexplained hibernation –4 days in February, June 12-16, and June 20-27. Because of these absences, people are calling for the full disclosure of Duterte’s medical records.

 

An unconventional leader hailed as the best president in the solar system

Dueterte’s work hours are from 1pm to early morning. He hates reading prepared speeches, preferring to talk freely and extemporaneously and, often, in visceral language. With the media in attendance, he alternately (depending on his mood) wolf-whistles, hurls angry expletives, makes fun of his VP, throws around preposterous promises, spreads gossip, claims criminal acts in the past, cries like a baby, and incites murderous violence among his supporters. He wants to pulverize criminality but he is linked to the Davao Death Squad, if we are to believe the testimonies of Matobato and Lascanas. He claims to abhor corruption but the company he keeps is comprised largely of corrupt officials and shady characters. He also refuses to open his bank accounts amid allegations that he has had ₱2.2 billion in bank deposits. He vows to crush the illegal drug trade in the country but he protects the likes of Peter Lim, Supt. Marvin Marcos and the other scalawags in the police force. He chooses his appointees not based on merit but on patronage. He promised to be a unifying president but he is now promoting divisiveness among us all.

 

President Duterte is expected to stay in Malacanang until his term ends in another 5 years. So, mga kababayan, let’s all fasten our seatbelts. It’s going to be one heck of a bumpy ride!

 

AN OPEN LETTER TO MY TATAY DIGONG

Dear Tatay  Digong,

Marami po akong naririnig na negative things na sinasabi nila laban sa iyo at, bilang isa sa iyong 103-milyong mga anak, nasasaktan ako. Sino po ba namang anak ang gugustuhing matawag ang kanyang ama na psychopath, sociopath, demagogue, misogynist, pathological liar, murderer at plunderer? Wala po siguro. Subalit, ngayon, halos buong mundo ang tumutuligsa sa iyo dahil sa inyong mga kilos at pananalita. At, sadly, pati ang pagtingin nila sa ating bansa at sa mga Pilipino ay apektado.

Dati po, kilala ang Pilipinas bilang “Asia’s bastion of Christianity.” When foreigners would describe us, lagi nilang sinasabi na ang mga Pinoy ay mabait, masayahin, matulungin, madasalin at magiliw sa mga panauhin. Ngayon, may reputasyon na tayo bilang bastos, bayolente at kriminal.

Tatay, tanggap ko po na sanay kayo sa “gutter language.” Hindi nyo po inilihim sa amin ‘yan kahit na noong panahon ng kampanya. Pero nangako po kayo sa amin na, once elected at bilang respeto sa iyong posisyon bilang Ama ng Bansa, you will become dignified. Ang sabi mo pa nga, “cussing will be a thing of the past.” So, ano po ang nangyari? Mula sa Pope, sa mga Presidente at Ambassadors ng iba’t-ibang nasyon, hanggang sa mga journalists, human rights advocates, mga kalaban sa politika at kaparian — lahat sila ay nakatikim ng iyong infamous na pagmumura. Hanggang ngayon, sa mga public appearances nyo, hindi pwedeng hindi ka magmura.

Tinitingala ka namin, Tatay, at itinuturing na aming role model. Sana po, mas maganda ang mga naririnig naming salita mula sa ‘yo. Isa pa po, cursing the other heads of state will foster animosity between their countries and ours. Bilang isang third-world country pa naman, alam nyo po na hindi natin kayang mag-survive without the help of our allies. Hinay-hinay lang po, Tatay.

Sabi din po nila, wala kayong “Palabra de Honor.” Mahilig daw po kayong magbitiw ng mga pangakong alam nyo namang imposible nyong matupad.

Nangako kayo that you will “solve our traffic woes in 100 days.” Tatay, walong buwan na po kayo sa Malacanang pero ang traffic sa EDSA, lumala pa. Pangako nyo rin that you will fight “patronage politics” pero pinayagan nyo ang paglilibing kay Macoy sa Libingan Ng Mga Bayani, ang pagpapalaya kay GMA, ang pagpapatakas kay Peter Lim, ang pangangamkam ng China sa pinag-aagawang bahagi ng West Philippine Sea, at ang pagtatalaga ng mga showbiz personalities sa gobyerno. Totoo po na lahat sila ay nakatulong sa iyong kampanya pero, sana po, huwag ma-compromise ang kapakanan ng bansa sa pagnanais nyong makabayad ng utang na loob sa kanila. Country above all else po dapat, hindi ba?

Galit po kayo sa corruption, at hinahangaan ko po kayo dahil diyan. Pinagbantaan nyo pa nga dati ang mga corrupt officials na ihahagis nyo sila mula sa helicopter in mid-air, di po ba? E bakit nasa gabinete nyo pa po si Justice Sec. Aguirre? Very obvious naman during the senate investigation na plano nyang mag-extort ng pera mula kina Jack Lam. Pumutok lang ang issue kaya naghugas-kamay na lang siya. Si Sen. Pacquiao, malaki po ang atraso nya sa BIR. At si Sen. Cayetano, saang kamay ng Diyos po kaya niya nakuha ang malaking pera that he donated for your campaign?

Itong si Sen. Trillanes po, he claims na may hawak siyang mga documents proving na nagkaroon ng around P2.2 billion in deposit transactions sa bank accounts nyo. Para po mapahiya at tuluyan nang manahimik si Trillanes, bakit hindi na lang po kayo pumirma at mag-issue sa mga banko nyo ng waiver ng bank secrecy? That would effectively put to rest all these corruption allegations against you, Tatay.

Just the other day, during the celebration of International Women’s Day, you vowed to uphold gender equality. Mapaninindigan nyo po ba talaga ‘yan, Tatay, o isa na naman ‘yan sa marami mong rhetorical statements? Alam naman nating lahat na lagi nyong ipinagmamalaki ang pagiging matinik nyo sa chicks, na kesyo kaya nyong pagsabay-sabayin ang ilang babae sa buhay nyo. Hindi po ba’t isa nga ‘yan sa mga dahilan kung bakit nag-file ng annulment of marriage ang dati nyong asawa?

During the campaign, napulaan kayo dahil sa insensitive nyong comment about the Australian missionary na ginang-rape at pinatay ng mga preso. Kumalat din ang mga pictures nyo na nagpapaupo kayo sa hita at nanghahalik ng mga female supporters nyo. Nang naging Pangulo naman kayo, isa sa mga unang naging kontrobersya laban sa inyo ay ang pagpito nyo sa isang female reporter during a press conference. Hayan tuloy, sa Hollywood tv show na “Madam Secretary,” pinalabas nilang bastos ang Presidente ng Pilipinas. Kahiya-hiya po tayo sa buong mundo. Pero hindi po natin sila masisisi. Depictment lang po iyun ng kung ano ang mga naisusulat at napapanood tungkol sa inyo.

You also seem intimidated by strong women, especially women who have the balls to stand up to you. Nariyan sina Sen. De Lima (na hindi kayo tinantanan for your alleged human rights violations mula noong kayo pa ang Mayor ng Davao), SC Chief Justice Sereno (na kinwestyun ang paglalabas mo sa publiko ng mga pangalan ng mga “narco-judges”), Ombudsman Carpio-Morales (na pinaghinalaan mong siyang nagbigay ng go-signal na isiwalat ang iyong di-umano’y multibillion-peso bank accounts noong panahon ng kampanya), VP Robredo (na walang-tigil sa pagpuna sa mga patayan under your War on Drugs) at UN Special Rapporteur Agnes Callamard (na gustong imbistigahan ang spate of unlawful killings na nangyayari under your administration). Dahil parang hindi nyo alam how to deal with strong women like them, you resort to insult and threat. Tila, you want to humiliate them. You want to break them. You want to silence them. You want to control them.

FILIPPINE_-_0510_-_Presidente
Photo credit: mironline.ca

Tatay, sa palagay nyo po ba, kung buhay pa ngayon ang inyong ina ay ikatutuwa niya ang mga ginagawa nyo sa mga kabaro nya? O ang pagpayag nyong mailibing sa LNMB ang diktador na si Marcos? Malamang po, hindi. Alam naman po natin na matapang niyang nilabanan ang lahat ng uri ng pang-aabuso noong panahon ng Martial Law, di ba?

Siguro po, dahil sa pagtingala din sa inyo bilang kanilang ehemplo kaya may mga supporters kayo na nangharass online dati sa mga kabataang babae na nakilahok sa protest rally against the controversial Marcos burial. Tatay, ganyan kalaki ang inyong kapangyarihan at impluwensya sa amin. Kaya kung gusto nyong maging magalang kami, sana po, maging mabuting modelo ka sa amin.

During your speeches, lagi nyo rin pong sinasabi na alam nyo ang ginagawa nyo dahil kayo ay dating abogado. Pero sa bibig nyo na rin po nanggaling that, when you were a city prosecutor in Davao, you used to plant evidence to help the authorities when going after criminals. Tatay, hindi po ako abogado pero sigurado po ako na ang ganoong gawain ay labag sa batas. Alam ko rin po na may batas tayo laban sa bribery. So bakit hindi nyo po kinasuhan ang Mighty Corp na, ayon kay Mr. Salvador Panelo, ay sinubukan kayo dating suhulan? Katulad ng claim ni DA Sec. Manny Piñol na binigyan siya ng isang malaking agricultural company ng Rolex watch worth P450k, ng claim ni Justice Sec. Aguirre na sinuhulan diumano ni dating Sen. Jamby Madrigal at Binan Rep. Alonte ng P100 million ang mga convicted druglords to recant their testimonies against Sen. De Lima, at ng claim ni Sec. Andanar na binayaran daw ng $1,000 ang mga reporters who covered the presscon of self-confessed DDS leader Lascañas. Totoo po ba ang mga claims at allegations na ‘yun, o produkto lang lahat ng fake news?

Tatay, you are aware how sensitive the Filipinos are sa usapin ng Martial Law. Marami pa pong sugat ang hindi naghihilom mula sa madilim at mapanupil na mga taon ng pamumuno nina Marcos. Kaya, sana po, huwag mong gagamiting banta ang pagdi-declare mo ng Martial Law under any circumstance. Ginagawa mo kaming parang mga bata na tinatakot mo when we step out of line. Hindi po nakakatuwa ang ganun, Tatay.

Naniniwala po ako na matapang ka pero bahag daw po ang buntot mo kapag China na ang kaharap mo. During the campaign, ang sabi mo, magji-jet ski ka papuntang Spratly, itatanim mo ang bandila natin doon at hahamunin mo ang mga Intsik sa suntukan o barilan. Bakit po ganun? Ngayon na kinakamkam nila ang malaking bahagi ng West Philippine Sea, biglang wala kayong magagawa dahil superpower sila? Tatay, teritoryo at kasarinlan po natin ang pinag-uusapan at ipinaglalabanan dito; ang lupain na iiwanan natin sa ating mga anak at sa kanilang mga anak. Huwag nyo naman pong isuko nang ganung kadali lamang ito lalo pa nga’t based on the ruling na ipinalabas noong isang taon ng Arbitral Tribunal ng United Nations, naipanalo po natin ang ating arbitration case against China. Tayo po ang may exclusive sovereign rights sa West Philippine Sea!

Nang nagsalita kayo sa harap ng ating mga kababayan na nasa Myanmar, sinabi po ninyo that you are against same-sex marriage dahil ayon po sa inyo, aside from our Civil Code, Katoliko tayo. Kung saan po kamo tayo ipinwesto ng Diyos, dapat doon lang tayo. Seryoso ka ba sa statement mong ‘yun, Tatay, o nagbibiro ka lang? Dati po kasi, namumula ako sa ginagawa mong pagmumura at pambabatikos sa Simbahang Katolika. Tapos, ngayon, ang paniniwala ng Katolika ang gagamitin mong sandata laban sa apela ng mga members ng LGBT community? Isa pa po, ito ang linya nyo during the campaign, “Same sex marriage is good. Everyone deserves to be happy.” Ano po ang nangyari? Sinabi nyo lang ba yun dati to secure their votes? That is not so good, Tatay.

During that same speech, sinabi nyo rin po na safe na sa Pilipinas. Sa punto pong iyon, I’m sure na nagjo-joke lang kayo.

Let me remind you, Tatay, that under your War on Drugs, mahigit 7,000 na ang namamatay ayon sa official report ng PNP. May mga “suspected” drug offenders, may mga cases of mistaken identity, at may mga bystanders – either during legitimate police operations o by rogue police officers o vigilantes na masyadong siniseryoso ang call nyo to “slaughter them all.” Just today, I heard the news about a Chemical Engineering magna cum laude graduate from UP Los Banos na bigla na lang nawalang parang bula. Nag-aabang siya ng sasakyan at 4 am dahil first day of work nya sa kumpanyang inaplayan niya. Meron rin pong isang 20-year-old na lalaki ang dinukot ng mga naka-bonnet na assailants at isinakay sa isang van na walang plaka. Ang lalaking yun ay papunta lang sa drug store para bumili ng gamot dahil may sakit ang kanyang baby. Safe ba kanyo?

Alam nyo po, everytime na lumalabas ng bahay ang mga anak ko, kinakabahan at natatakot ako. Pero, bilang ina, ang kaya ko lang pong gawin ay ang pabaunan sila ng mga habilin: (1) Huwag makikipagtinginan sa mga pulis; (2) Lalayo sa mga naka-motorsiklo, lalo na kapag riding in tandem o nakasuot ng bonnet; (3) Kapag naka-witness sila ng krimen, tumakbo palayo; at (4) Kapag namamaga ang mata nila dahil sa magdamagang pagre-review, magsuot ng colored glasses. Mabuti na po ang nag-iingat, ‘di po ba? Baka mapagbintangan silang drug addict, bigla na lang itumba at takpan ng placard na nagsasabing, “Addict ako, huwag tularan.” Hindi ko po kakayanin kapag nangyari sa isa sa mga anak ko ang ganun.

Isa pa po sa mga naririnig ko is that you cannot tolerate criticism. Kaya nga po yata galit na galit kayo sa ipinadalang video message ni VP Leni sa UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs ay dahil isiniwalat nya ang mga totoong kaganapan sa bansa dahil sa inyong War on Drugs. Masyado kamong “atat” sa posisyon si VP. At part lang kamo ang lahat ng ‘yan (pati na rin ang Impeachment Complaint na inihain laban sa inyo) ng destabilization plot against your administration. Tatay, sa tingin ko po, hindi na kailangan ang ibang tao to destabilize your government. Kayo lang po — kasama ang inyong mga kaalyado na sina House Speaker Alvarez, Senate Pres. Pimentel, Justice Sec. Aguirre, PNP Chief Dela Rosa, Solicitor General Calida, Senators Pacquiao, Sotto, Gordon at Cayetano, mga appointees na sina Cesar Montano, Perfecto Yasay at Mocha Uson, at ang mga ka-DDS ko at mga bayarang trolls — ay sapat na to do the job effectively. Self-destructing nga raw po ang administrasyon nyo e.

Finally po, Tatay, nakikiusap ako sa inyo. Stop inciting emotional chaos. Temper your emotions lalo na kapag nasa harap kayo ng publiko. And don’t try to silence the opposition. Dapat nga po, you welcome dissent dahil ‘yun ang katunayan na buhay ang demokrasya sa ilalim ng iyong pamumuno.

‘Tay, I really hope and pray that you will soon start acting like the unifying and dignified President that you promised us you will be. The country deserves nothing less.

Nagmamalasakit,

Ang inyong anak

 

PS: Don’t forget to take your meds, Tatay. Nag-iiba ang timpla nyo kapag nakaka-miss kayo e.

THE PRESIDENT’S BUCKET LIST

President Duterte, in his many speeches, has often intimated that he may not live to see the end of his six-year term. And considering the two incidences wherein he allegedly passed out (in Peru during the APEC summit, and in Malacanang during a recent huddle with three of his most trusted men), we now have more compelling reason to believe that the president might know something that we don’t —a reason that could explain why he seems to be constantly working under a tight deadline.

In any case, I decided to help our dear president by making his bucket list for him. And considering that I have already written a significant number of articles about this tough-talking leader, doing this list from his perspective turned out to be a piece of cake!

So, c’mon. Together, let us check out and keep track of Digong’s list of things he wants to do before he kicks the proverbial bucket. 😉


1. To make good on my promises by appointing my campaign supporters to various government posts

Mark Villar as the DPWH Secretary? Check.
RJ Jacinto as the Presidential Adviser on Economic Affairs and Information Technology? Check.
Kat De Castro as DOT Undersecretary? Check.
Arnell Ignacio as Pagcor’s Assistant VP for Community Relation and Services Department? Check.
Jimmy Bondoc as Pagcor’s Assistant VP for Entertainment? Check.
Aiza Seguerra as the Chairman of the National Youth Commission? Check.
Liza Diño as the Chairperson of the Film Development Council? Check.
Her father, Martin Dino, as the SBMA Chairman? Check.
Freddie Aguilar as the Chairman of the National Commission for the Culture and the Arts? Check.
Cesar Montano as the COO of Tourism Promotions? Check.

Blogger Lorraine Badoy as a DSWD Assistant Secretary? Check.

Blogger Mocha Uson as the PCOO Assistant Secretary? Check.

RJ Nieto of The Thinking Pinoy blog as a DFA consultant? Check.

(Martin Diño was bumped off his position by SBMA Administrator Wilma Eisma. He is set to be appointed DILG Undersecretary, though. Bondoc and Aguilar’s assumption of office, on the other hand, did not push through since both positions are not coterminous with the President’s tenure.)

I have also appointed at least half a dozen of my campaign donors and their relatives to the Cabinet and other positions, and have granted Robin Padilla absolute pardon.


2. To release former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo from her four years of hospital arrest

As early as during the campaign, I already said that I found the evidence against that poor, innocent woman weak. Thank goodness, 11 of the SC Justices thought the same way I did.

After the release of Jinggoy, I also want to have Bong Revilla out of jail. It’s a promise I made to the Caviteños during the campaign.

3. To allow Ferdinand Marcos’ burial in the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani

I don’t care if doing so would piss off a considerable portion of the population, or if it would open anew the festering wounds of the past, or if it would not agree with how the various courts (both local and international), the Constitution and the history itself regard the late dictator. What’s of utmost importance is that I get to keep my promise to the family of my idol, especially to Madam Imee, one of my biggest campaign contributors.

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Photo credit: theintercept.com


4. To wage a bloody all-out war against illegal drugs

The number of drug addicts in the country is quite staggering and scary. I have to slaughter all these idiots. The more than 13,000 casualties so far since I assumed office constitute a mere drop in the bucket. Come on, people, Hitler killed 6 million Jews during the Holocaust! And don’t dare threaten me with a law suit. As the President of the Philippines, I have a presidential immunity. I’m also considering planning to pass a law before I step down to absolve me of all acts that may be construed as crimes. Or I could simply pardon myself for mass murder.


5. To sever our ties with the imperialist nations, particularly with the US that once 
denied my visa application

And what could be the swiftest and most effective way of doing that than cursing them all including their emissaries. Obama, you son of a whore! You, stupid and inutile United Nations, you son of a b***h! To the international press, p*******a ninyo! To the European Union, f**k you! Find me a Singaporean flag and I’ll burn it, son of a b***h! To the Australian government, stay out. This is politics! To US Ambassador Philip Goldberg, you gay son of a b***h!


6. To be besties with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin

There are now three of us against the world —China, Philippines and Russia. It’s the only way. For those of you claiming that China is a bully, you are sadly mistaken. In fact, China magnanimously offered to build rehab centers in the country to address our problem with drug addiction. Never mind that most of the biggest drug lords operating on our shores are Chinese.


7. To make Leila De Lima suffer the way she made me suffer with her relentless probe on the Davao Death Squad during the years I was Mayor of Davao

I will expose her colorful love life for everyone’s scrutiny and I will draw a drug matrix to uncover her role in the drug trade in Bilibid. The heck with proof and evidence. I just need to smear her reputation and besmirch her spotless public service record. Oh, okay, maybe I can use a handful of the convicted criminals in Bilibid, a self-confessed drug lord, and a scorned ex-lover to fabricate some stories to further implicate her. This is going to be one spectacular show in Congress that the gullible Filipinos will fall for.


8. To establish my own religion

What if there’s no God? Would you still want to be part of the most hypocritical institution, the Catholic Church? I have a new religion now, the Iglesia Ni Duterte. Come, join me. Who knows, maybe my God will also have a two-way conversation with you like He did with me when He made me promise never to curse again.

pia-duterte
Photo credit: thesummitexpress.com


9. To meet, face-to-face, the most beautiful woman in the universe

This happened when our very own Pia Wurtzbach, the reigning Miss Universe, paid me a visit in Malacañang. Aside from chatting about our recent wins in our respective fields and about our beloved Mindanao, we also took some selfies. Cool!


10. To desensitize the Filipinos to violence and aggression

With 5,617 drug-related deaths in 5 months, the death toll now averages at 37 a day. And people prefer to go out into the streets to protest the burial of a former president rather than mourn the death of these drug addicts and drug pushers. I must be doing something right. Presently, I’m also working on desensitizing them to my incurable swearing and potty mouth (I do not have to clean up my mouth. I am a president, not a diplomat!), to the lack of decency and integrity among most of my officials and supporters, and to the blatant disregard of the law. I cannot accomplish the countless promises I made during the campaign if I will be a stickler for the rules.


11. To help our law enforcers regain their lost glory and confidence

I will take good care of them by promising to double their salaries, monitoring the condition of their camps, providing all that they need in fighting the enemies of the state, and protecting them from any legal trouble. Should they commit “lapses” in the performance of their duties especially during the execution of Oplan Tokhang and Oplan Double Barrel, they would not have to worry about ending up behind bars. I will grant them pardon. Did you see what I did with Supt. Marvin Marcos, the CIDG Region 8 Chief who was relieved by Bato due to his alleged involvement in illegal drug trade? I ordered his reinstatement that same day that he was sacked from his post. And when he and his team were implicated a few days after in the killing of Mayor Rolando Espinosa, who they said shot at them while they were serving Espinosa a search warrant in his jail cell before the crack of dawn, I readily believed their story. Not even the NBI findings can sway me.


12. To reinstate death penalty

That is the only way to ensure that criminals pay for their sins in case God does not really exist. I don’t care what the “bleeding hearts” and human rights groups have to say but, when that bill is passed, death penalty can easily be meted out to anyone convicted of possession of dangerous drugs, among other crimes.


13. To lower the age of criminal liability from 15 years old to 9

Organized crimes and adult offenders are purposely capitalizing on these children below 15 to commit crimes such as drug trafficking because the criminals know that the children cannot be held criminally liable for their actions. So, parents, look after your kids. When your 9-year-old babies violate the law, they can no longer get off the hook that easily.


14. To put up a revolutionary government as a precursor to my long-time dream of federalism

Don’t listen to the crap peddled by the paranoid. It is not true that a “revolutionary government would be much more totalitarian because it is extra-constitutional”; that I “would have absolute power”; that I “can abolish key institutions like Congress, like the courts”; and that I “can introduce a new political system, legal system, social system, economic system.” That’s just all crap —a product of their wild imagination. Nothing more.

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VP Leni, hired through phone call, fired through text message? Photo credit: adobochroniclesdotcom


15. To annoy and humiliate Leni until she, on her own accord, decides to leave my cabinet

Before the international and national media, I will tease her about her relationship status, the short skirt she once wore during a cabinet meeting, and her nice knees and legs (that I and Carlos Dominguez ogle at). I will slash the budget of HUDCC by half, I will not act on her appointment recommendations, and I will not sign any EO she will endorse for my approval. As a coup de grâce, I will have Jun text her to let her know of my instruction for her to desist from attending all cabinet meetings henceforth. And being the epitome of decency, I’m sure that she will be extremely insulted by the rudeness and will resign right away. These yellowtards are pathetically predictable. They’re nothing like my beloved Dutertards.


16. To watch Pacquiao beat Mayweather –to a pulp. And to see the People’s champ as my successor in case Bongbong doesn’t make it.

Alan Peter Cayetano? He’s nothing more to me than a lowly lapdog and a reliable errand boy.


17. To declare Martial Law if the threat of illegal drugs further escalates

I have already tested the waters when I once warned Sereno of not interfering in my campaign against drugs, lest I would be forced to declare Martial Law. I also issued a warning that I may suspend the writ of habeas corpus if lawlessness persists. Unfortunately, people showed massive resistance in both occasions. But, hey, I managed to declare a national state of lawlessness following the deadly blast in Davao. I was also able to successfully place the country under Terror Alert level 3 following the foiled bomb attack near the US Embassy. There’s still hope, I think. It’s just a matter of impeccable timing.


18. To suspend Nur Misuari’s trial and have the arrest warrant against him lifted

He is the MNLF Chairman and I need him in the peace talks. Let us temporarily set aside the fact that over 200 people were killed and thousands more were displaced during their 20-day attacks on Zamboanga City in 2013. I also released Communist leaders for the peace negotiations between the government and the CPP-NPA-NDF.

source
Photo credit to the owner


19. To help the Marcoses make their way back into Malacañang

The reason why I was hesitant to offer Leni a cabinet position right after I assumed office was because of Bongbong. He is my friend, and I did not want to hurt his feelings. Also, I am deeply indebted to the Marcoses. First, my father used to be a cabinet member of the late Ferdinand Marcos. Second, thanks to the Marcoses, I got an overwhelming support from the Ilocanos during the last elections, while I failed miserably in Bicol. Third, Gov. Imee was one of my campaign donors when I ran for office. And, fourth, I have always idolized Pres. Marcos. He was the brightest president our country has ever had. If the choice was solely mine, I would have Bongbong for my VP. In fact, that’s how I introduced him to the Filipino community in China –as my second in command. It’s a good thing, though, that Bongbong has his electoral protest. There’s a chance that he will still be my VP. As Bongbong confidently puts it, “I will eventually take my seat that is being kept warm for me.”


20. To be hailed as the best president in the solar system

I want to make my supporters proud, so when the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) conferred upon me what could possibly be the biggest honor any man could ever receive, I was ecstatic. Finally, a legit agency has acknowledged my burning desire to change this country —even if it costs me my life.

A PRESIDENT’S POTTY MOUTH

Today marks the Duterte administration’s 100th day since he assumed office on June 30. What’s the best way to observe this milestone, you ask? By reminding ourselves of the President’s trademark gutter mouth, that’s what!

The following is a list of Pres. Duterte’s statements that left the world in shock, and the Filipinos either cringing in shame or cheering shamelessly.

davao-city-mayor-duterte
Image grabbed from the net.

On God:

I can teach God about justice.

When a one-year-old baby, 18-month-old baby is taken from the mother’s arms, brought under a jeep and raped and killed, where is God? And in Syria, women and children, who don’t want to have sex with Isis [Islamic State], they are burned. So where’s God? My God, where are you?

On the Catholic Church:

There are things which the Catholic Church must change or else, it will — by the end of these three decades from now, it becomes irrelevant.

I once considered being a priest. It’s good (that) I didn’t join the priesthood or else, now, I would be a homosexual.

To/On US and/or Pres. Obama:

They say, the CIA is planning to kill me. Until now, I cannot believe that I am the [President]. Give me the chance to think [and realize that I am the] President.

Better think twice now because I would be asking you to leave the Philippines altogether.

The Americans, I don’t like them. They are reprimanding me in public. So I say: ‘Screw you, f*** you, everything else. You are stupid.

I do not want to quarrel with the most powerful country on the planet, but Washington has been so liberal about criticizing human rights, human rights and human rights. How about you? I have so many questions also about human rights to ask you. So … people who live in glass houses should not throw stones at others.

As you know, I’m fighting with (US Secretary of State John Kerry’s) ambassador. His gay ambassador, the son of a whore. He pissed me off.

You have a president, Netanyahu… he doesn’t care about America. Do they ever chastise Netanyahu? No. (on likening himself to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over how they both defy the influence of the United States on the two countries)

I would not cut our umbilical cord to countries we are allied with.

I do not want a rift with America, but they have to go. It’ll become more heated. If they (the ASG members) see an American, the latter will really be killed. Ransomed off, then killed.

Instead of helping us, the first who attacked (the anti-drug campaign) was the State Department. So, you can go to hell. Mr. Obama, you can go to hell.

I am a president of a sovereign state and we have long ceased to be a colony. I do not have any master except the Filipino people, nobody but nobody. You must be respectful. Do not just throw away questions and statements. (in Filipino) Son of a whore, I will curse you in that forum.

I purposely did not attend the bilateral talks between ASEAN countries and the president of the US. The reason is that I do not like the Americans. It’s simply a matter of principle for me.

Eventually in my time, I would break up with America. I would rather go to Russia or to China. Even though we don’t agree with the ideology, they have respect for the people.

We will be wallowing in the mud if you do that to me. (to US Pres. Obama)

Itong EDCA, it is an official document but it’s only signed by an aide and si Gazmin. It does not bear the signature of the President of the Republic of the Philippines, Aquino. Better think twice now because I would be asking you to leave the Philippines altogether.

United States failed as a friend to the Philippines.

There are others who have the mental capacity of dogs who lap at the ass of the Americans.

I got really angry about these threats over this human rights issue. This is the fault of the crazy people in the State Department.

If you think it’s high time for you guys to withdraw your assistance, go ahead. We will not beg for it. Go away. Bring your money to somewhere else. (addressed to the US, EU and UN)

To the European Union:

These stupid lawyers in the EU… well, screw you. I will kick you.

(You can go to hell, Mr. Obama.) The EU, better choose purgatory. Hell is filled up. (over criticisms of his deadly anti-drug war)

I have read the condemnation of the European Union against me. I’m telling them, ‘F**k you. You’re doing it in atonement for your sins.

To the United Nations:

I don’t give a sh*t. I am the president of the Philippines, not the republic of the international community.

I am inviting the United Nations’ Ban Ki … what’s the name of that devil? … Ban Ki-moon… to come to the Philippines.

(I encourage her to) come to the Philippines and count the numbers of deaths also incurred by government with [her] fingers to guide her how many deaths were cost. (to Agnes Callamard, UN special rapporteur for summary executions)

Pati ito si Ban Ki-moon, nakihalo. He also gave his statement before, several weeks ago, about the human rights violation. Sabi ko, isa ka pang tarantado (I said, you’re one more fool).

Maybe we’ll just have to decide to separate from the United Nations. (in Filipino) If you are that insulting, son of a bitch, we should just leave. Take us out of your organization. You have done nothing anyway.

To the International Critics:

Every time you insult the Philippines or you reprimand or castigate me in public, you are really crucifying the Filipino people.

Tomorrow, I will be friends with (Russian President Vladimir) Putin and (Chinese President) Xi Jinping.

To China:

The Chinese people this time might find a place in their hearts for the Filipinos. After all, I come from— there’s a Chinese blood in me, so I hope that you treat us your brothers, not your enemies and take note of the plight of our citizens. (to Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Zhao Jianhua)

On the War Against Drugs:

There are 6,000 barangay captains doing their own thing, manufacturing shabu. How am I supposed to deal with – sometimes I am tempted really to declare martial law.

Rehabilitation is no longer a viable option (for shabu addicts).

Do your duty, and if in the process, you kill 1,000 persons because you were doing your duty, I will protect you. (to police officers)

What I can assure you is, for as long as I’m president, you will have all equipment and weaponry necessary to win the war or at least to defeat them in every fight. (to Filipino soldiers)

I have started this; I will end this. I don’t mind landing in jail as long as you visit me in Muntinlupa. Bring drugs so I can be addicted to them. (on his war against illegal drugs)

You do not have to worry about the criminal liability. I will go to prison for you. Just do it according to the book. If you are pressed down, then do not worry. Just call my name and I will be there to protect you. (to the police and military officers)

If you know of any addicts, go ahead and kill them yourself as getting their parents to do it would be too painful. (to the crowd)

There will be no let-up in this campaign. We will not stop until the last drug lord, the last financier and the last pusher has surrendered or been put behind bars or below the ground if they so wish.

I ordered the validation. I am the one reading it and I am the sole person responsible for this one. (on the narco list)

I am telling you, do not go on the other side. Otherwise, you will be first in the [kill]list. (to the police and military officers)

Crime against humanity? In the first place, I’d like to be frank with you: are they humans? What is your definition of a human being? Human rights? Use it properly in the right context if you have the brains. You cannot wage a war without killing.

If you are involved in drugs, I will kill you. You son of a whore, I will really kill you.

I will pay, for a drug lord: 5M pesos if he is dead. If he is alive, only 4.999 million.

If they are there in your neighborhood, feel free to call us, the police or do it yourself if you have the gun. You have my support. If he fights and fights to the death, you can kill him. I will give you a medal.

We are 104M. You care about –how many—1,600 being killed.

It’s not the work of police to be wrapping people with plastic and (putting) him in the bag. That is not the job of the police. I just told (them) that one bullet will do. Why do you have to wrap it? I said, don’t waste your time.

I am ordering the sequestering of this property. Chua can never get it back again, I can assure you. Pag bumalik sya dito, sabi ko, sya nalang ang lutuin dyan sa loob. [If he goes back, he’ll be the one who’s going to be cooked there inside.] If you pour muriatic acid, you will never know where he is. (referring to a shabu laboratory in Pampanga)

I will not relent on this because they will do everything to make us, me, kneel down. ‘Di ako papayag. Alam nila ang problema. [I will never agree to it. They know the problem.]

On Extrajudicial Killings and Human Rights Violations:

My order is shoot to kill. I don’t care about human rights. Believe me, I don’t give a s**t about what they will say.

Do not listen to human rights’ [advocates] because [an advocate of the] human rights is antithesis of government.

You are all hypocrites! You cannot even protect the human rights in your own country, (of) the African-Americans and other minorities, not to mention your inutility in dealing with the genocide going on in Africa and other countries. (to New York-based Human Rights Watch)

Our justice system is dysfunctional. They have to shape up before we can really follow due process.

There is no law which says I cannot threaten criminals.

To Abu Sayyaf and other Terrorists:

I will really open up your body. Just give me vinegar and salt, and I will eat you.

Go ahead. Set off bombs. Time will come when I will eat you in front of the people. I will devour you. (after the Davao bombing)

There will be more, because of retaliation, reprisals, and there will be maybe more blasts. But, there will be a day of reckoning. Bantayan ninyo.

All of us want peace, not the peace of the dead, but the peace of the living. We express our willingness and readiness to go to the negotiating table, and yet we load our guns, fix our sights, pull the trigger. It is both ironic and tragic, and it is endless. (to our Muslim brothers)

To the CPP/NPA/NDF:

Let us end these decades of ambuscades and skirmishes. We are going nowhere and it is getting bloodier by the day.

I am announcing a unilateral ceasefire with the CPP-NPA-NDF effective immediately. I expect and call on our fellow Filipinos and the National Democratic Front and its forces to respond accordingly.

On Sen. Leila De Lima:

Every time I watch the video, I lose my appetite. Only people who will fall for her are … I am not a guard or a motorcycle cop or convict. (referring to Sen. De Lima’s alleged sexual escapades)

Akala niya, siya ang conscience of the country… P—– i– mo, hanggang ngayon naghihintay ako niyan… I kept quiet because you are a lady.

I have a special ano kay ano. She is a government official. One day soon I will – bitiwan ko yan (I will drop her) in public and I will have to destroy her in public.

If you remember, I was the only whipping boy niya. Human rights siya noon, she was starting to castigate, crucify me.

To Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno

Do not create a crisis because I will order everybody in the executive department not to honor you.

Would you rather I declare Martial Law?

To the Media:

I will not respond to questions anymore ever until the end of my term.

They said I am the most unpopular among the international press. I don’t care.

Stop threatening foreign and local media — even when they come up with unfavorable or critical write-ups. (to supporters)

I’m urging you; make this trip your last in Davao City. I do not care if no one is covering me. Do not threaten me. I said I’m ready to lose the presidency, my honor or my life. Just do not fuck with me.

You insult me internationally, fine, do it… You know, men judge best when they condemn. The translation of son of a b****, p**** ina mo… But they changed the nomenclature – ‘son of a whore,’ which is really not good to hear.

Nagpapapansin ka talaga sa akin (You’re really trying to catch my attention). (then made a wolf whistle to GMA-7 reporter Mariz Umali)

Corrupt journalists are legitimate targets of assassination.

If you are an upright journalist, nothing will happen to you. The example here is Pala. I do not want to diminish his memory but he was a rotten son of a bitch. He deserved it.

On Hitler:

I have been portrayed to be a cousin of Hitler. He massacred three million Jews. Now there are 3 million drug addicts (in the Philippines). I’d be happy to slaughter them. At least, if Germany had Hitler, the Philippines would have (me).

On the Issue of the PDAF Scam:

In between, far and wide in this controversy, I will now raise again the Napoles issue. It deserves a second look.

On the Paris Climate Agreement:

We have not reached the age of industrialization. We are going into it. But you (the industrialized countries) are trying to (cite) agreement that will impose limitations on us. We maintain the present emission. That’s stupid. I will not honor that. If you have qualms, pay us or give us time to catch up.

On Ferdinand Marcos:

My father was one of the Cabinet members of Marcos. That is why I cannot disassociate.

To the Jewish Community:

My wife is a Zimmerman. She is a descendant of an American Jew. Zimmerman. So why would I defile the memory of the Jews? What would I get if I insult the Jewish people when we have been friends and even in the matters of, I said, arms.

On Jane Veloso:

To beg for (Jane) Veloso’s life amid Philippine drug war leaves bad taste in the mouth.

On Federalism:

I can commit today to the Republic of the Philippines that if you will hurry up the federal system of government and you can submit it to the Filipino people by the fourth or fifth year, you call for a referendum, and after that, call for a presidential election.

On Death Penalty:

Every president along the way didn’t impose it only because the Catholic Church and all the bleeding hearts would say that only God could kill. But what if there is no God?

On Contractualization:

Let me warn again. You guys in the business sector, I do not want to quarrel with you, I will protect you. I said there will be no more shake downs in the Customs and in the BIR. I’m warning you again, but with all the protection that this government is giving you, if you continue with contractualization, there will, indeed, be some misunderstanding between us.

On Corruption in Government:

On Monday, I will declare all positions in the government — because of the presidential appointments — I will declare all your positions all throughout the country, vacant. You know why? I still hear corruption being committed by people especially in the regulatory agencies.

On his apologies:

I would like to apologize to you publicly. And I would say now, I am very sorry. Somehow, we were negligent in counter-checking during the first report. (to Rep. Amado Espino)

I would like to make it clear, here and now, that there was never any intention on my part to derogate the memory of the six million Jews murdered by the Germans. (to the Jewish community)

Dutertism:

Dito na lang kayo sa bago, Iglesia ni Duterte. Maganda dito, walang bawal.

I am a peaceful man now after the ASEAN.

I have learned a lot during my prosecution days. We planted evidence. We arrested persons but we released them, [then] telling him that it was this person who squealed on him. And then when he goes out for the killing, then we said that it was this fellow who really did it, who did you in.

When somebody called me [and told me about Sara’s miscarriage], I went to bathroom because I was at the lobby. I cried. These are the things in life that you cannot deal by just [ignoring it]. You have to heal yourself.

Election come and go, as we all know, and this would be my last fling with public service. I am old and, after this, I am going to retire.

In this quest, I will put at stake my honor, my life and the presidency itself.

On his Big Mouth:

The issue here is not my mouth. And they would say the ratings on business, on the economy, so be it, you get out of here. Then, we will start on our own. I can go to China, I can go to Russia. I had a talk with them, they are waiting for me, so what the hell. (when U.S.-based firm Standard & Poor warned that it may lower its investment-grade rating for the Phils. if reforms stall)

I can be foulmouthed but when I make a mistake, I can say I am very sorry.

For every profanity, there’s a story behind it. People should go beyond my cussing.

And you say that my mouth is not for a statesman, whoever told you I was applying for a statesman?

No, I will not stop, I will lose the momentum. And I cannot afford it because I am the President. The momentum has to be there and it will be there for six years until the last pusher is taken out of the streets. I cannot just play silent. (on Sen. Gordon’s suggestion to stop talking)

Never mind my mouth. I never aspired to be a statesman.

President Duterte might be a leader with big balls who will try anything in order to get the job done. Unfortunately, he has a bigger mouth that does not know how and when to shut up. As the man holding the highest position in the land, he is expected to adhere to some kind of proper decorum and presidential protocol. So for the country’s sake, let us all hope that our president will learn (asap!) how to wash his mouth —or how to zip it altogether!

WE WERE WARNED. WE JUST NEVER LISTENED.

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Image grabbed from the net

With everything that’s happening in our country today, nalulungkot ako.

Nagagalit ako.

Nanlulumo ako.

Nagtataka ako.

At minsan pa, napapailing ako at nasasabi ko sa aking sarili, “Wala na yata talagang pag-asa ang mga Pilipino. The country is doomed. Panahon na para isuko natin ang laban.

As of the latest count, more than 6,200 people are dead since Pres. Duterte took office six months ago and waged an intense all-out war against drugs. Ang mga balita that we wake up to each morning hinggil sa mga patayan sa nakaraang gabi ay karaniwang ipinagkikibit-balikat na lang natin. We, as a nation, have been desensitized because of over-exposure to such regular occurrences. After all, bakit pa nga ba tayo magugulat sa mga patayang ito? Hindi ba’t binalaan na tayo ni Digong when he was still campaigning na kapag nanalo siya, “it will be bloody, really bloody”?

Ilang beses nang naglabas ng narco lists at drug matrix si Presidente Duterte kung saan he names and shames officials and personalities na hinihinalang sangkot sa drug trade. Tama, the operative word here is “hinihinala”. Nalalagay sa alanganin ang reputasyon at buhay ng mga taong ito, pati na rin ang kanilang mga pamilya, based sa listahan na hindi maituturing na fool-proof at posible pa ngang compromised ang integridad. Sa katunayan, the president once issued an apology to some Pangasinan officials who “were wrongly included in the list”. E paano na ung mga napatay na ng mga pulis o vigilante? Sorry na lang ba ‘yun, better luck next time? Hindi na rin ba applicable ang “save the user, jail the pusher” campaign? Sabagay, ang pinapatay nga lang pala ay ang mga mahihirap nating kababayan. But some people would still ask, “Nasaan kasi ang due process? Bakit hindi kasuhan ang mga suspects na ito and allow them their day in court? Bakit kailangan silang i-subject sa ganitong proseso?” But then, again, bakit pa ba tayo kailangang magtanong? Hindi ba’t minsan nang sinabi ng mahal nating president, “There is no due process in my mouth”?

Five months ago, former president GMA was released after a four-year hospital detention due to plunder charges filed against her. She then announced her “most profound thanks” to Pres. Duterte. May ilang napataas ang kilay. Pero, bakit ba? Hindi ba’t, also during the campaign, nangako si Dueterte sa mga Kapampangan electorate that, once elected, he would have GMA released? Tinupad nya lang ang kanyang pangako. May isang salita kasi ang Tatay Digong ko.

A month ago, after the clandestine burial of Ferdinand  Marcos at the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani last November 18, si Aimee Marcos naman ang nagpasalamat kay Pres. Duterte. Marami ang nag-react. May mga sumugod pa nga sa EDSA People Power Monument upang ipakita nila ang kanilang disgusto sa pangyayari. Again, bakit ba? Totoo nga na sa panahon ng Martial Law, 70,000 were incarcerated; 35,000 were tortured; 882 went missing; and 3,257 were murdered. Totoo rin na ang foreign debt natin ay lumobo mula sa US$7 billion in 1965 when Marcos was first elected president to US$25 billion in 1986, the year he was ousted. Totoo rin na, ayon sa PCGG, ang total amount ng ill-gotten wealth ng mga Marcoses ay nasa US$10 billion. Sa halagang ito, only US$4 billion had been confiscated and returned to the treasury. The remaining US$6 billion is yet to be recovered. Pero ang pinakaimporatanteng bagay dito ay ang hindi pagkilala ng pamilyang Marcos sa mga kasalanan nila –o maging ng kanilang yumaong patriarch– noong Martial Law. So, paanong magkakaroon ng closure, moving on at pagpapatawaran kung wala naman palang kasalanan in the first place, di ba? Pero, again, hindi na tayo dapat na nabigla sa desisyon ni Digong. Itinuturing nya si Macoy na “best president ever”. Hindi ba’t ipinangako nya rin sa mga Ilocano electorate ang libing na ito once mahalal siya sa puwesto? He is a man of his word nga kasi.

Since Digong was shoved into the limelight in late 2015 when he filed his Certificate of Candidacy, hanggang sa kampanya at, ngayon, bilang pangulo ng bansa, walang nakaligtas sa tinatawag na phenomenal “gutter language” ni Pres. Duterte. Ang Santo Papa, ang mga Obispo at kaparian, ang United Nations, ang mga human rights advocates, si Senador De Lima, si Chief Justice Sereno, ang media, si US Pres. Obama, ang European Union, pati na rin ang Mexico, Australia at Singapore – lahat sila ay naging biktima ng potty mouth ni Digong. He also managed to provoke the ire of the Jews all over the world nang ikinumpara nya ang kanyang giyera laban sa droga sa Holocaust ni Hitler. A few days before that naman, the fierce animosity of what he fondly refers to as the “bleeding hearts” of the Catholic Church was roused anew nang sinabi niya that he “can teach God about justice”. Pero, ayon nga sa kanya, “Do not complain about my mouth. It is not a problem. It cannot bring down the country.” Isa pa, hindi ba’t kandidato pa lang siya, alam na natin ang kalibre ng bibig nya? Magtiis tayo!

Lastly, we have all been witness to this whole brouhaha in the Lower House. Ang ating mga honorable congressmen seem to take perverse pleasure in bringing down one woman. Isang tinik sa tagiliran, isang sakit sa ulo na hindi kayang gamutin ng Biogesic, isang kating nakakairita, isang Dennis the Menace sa buhay-politika ni Pres. Duterte. Iyan si Senador Leila De Lima. Malalim ang ugat ng galit ng ating unifying president sa senadora. Nagsimula ang kanilang tunggalian noong CHR chief pa lamang si De Lima and she made the grave mistake of poking her nose into Duterte’s alleged involvement in the Davao Death Squad. Obviously, Duterte has the memory of an elephant. At ang mga kaalyado nya are just too eager to please their master. Pinag-usapan pa ng ating mga kagalang-galang na konggresista ang posibleng pagpapalabas during the congressional probe ng di-umano’y sex video ni De Lima. I am not a De Lima fanatic. She may or may not be guilty of the allegations against her. Kagaya ng mga Pilipinong may bukas pang pag-iisip sa panahong ito, nais ko ring malaman ang katotohanan sa mga bintang na ‘yan. But that? That’s disgusting and perverse and is, obviously, a cheap shot. Masyadong mababa ito even for our congressmen. Unang-una, si Sec. Aguirre na mismo ang umamin that the said video is not duly authenticated by the NBI. So bakit nila ‘yun gagamitin sa kanilang probe? Para lang talaga ipahiya si De Lima sa publiko, that’s why. If they have enough evidence against the senator, bakit hindi sila magsampa ng mga kaukulang kaso sa korte? Sabagay, bakit pa nga ba? Hindi ba’t ang presidente na mismo ang nagsabing “She’s finished. She will go to jail”?

Hay, Pilipinas.

You were warned.

You just never listened.