Category Archives: Philippine Politics

The Philippine Case for Federalism, Its Form, and Its Safeguards

Updated 1/1/2019

By Marcial Bonifacio

My friends and countrymen, at the behest of House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, a constituent assembly (Con-Ass) may convene this month in order to form a Constitutional Commission.  The focal point will be amending the Constitution to federalize the Philippines.  Such a rare and significant event necessitates meticulous deliberation, which is why I propose that the members consider the reasons I have presented for the shift from the current Manila-centric, unitary form of government to a decentralized system of federalism.  I have also addressed some of the major concerns of federalism’s critics and included a few pithy proposals on which the new government may be structured.

In this proposal, I have frequently cited America’s founders, since federalism (as a systematic study of governance wherein power is shared between a central government and state governments) is often attributable to them, and their intent is made manifest in a collection of their 1787 constitutional convention debates published in The Federalist.  “On every question of construction,” states the American founder Thomas Jefferson, “carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text, or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed.”

Vertical Balance of Power

First and foremost, a federalist system would divide power between the national government and state or regional governments wherein such a dispersal of power would create a vertical, as well as horizontal balance of power.  The American founding father Alexander Hamilton elaborates:

This balance between the National and State governments ought to be dwelt on with peculiar attention, as it is of the utmost importance. It forms a double security to the people. If one encroaches on their rights they will find a powerful protection in the other. Indeed, they will both be prevented from overpassing their constitutional limits by a certain rivalship, which will ever subsist between them.

Close Proximity of States to the People

Second, state autonomy enables each state to govern more effectively due to their close proximity to the people residing in those states.  Jefferson wrote about the U.S., “Were not this great country already divided into states, that division must be made, that each might do for itself what concerns itself directly, and what it can so much better do than a distant authority.”  After all, do not our local public servants have a more accurate perspective of affairs within their own jurisdiction than those governing from Malacanang Palace?

Even President Rodrigo Duterte miscalculated the duration of his war on drugs, originally insisting on a 6-month purging operation, which he now says will require one more full year.  Such a reassessment is apparently due to his newly acquired national perspective and experience, as opposed to his provincial perspective and experience from being Davao City mayor for 22 years.  Although federalism will benefit the people in general, according to Consultative Committee (ConCom) member Eddie Alih, it will be especially expedient to “the lost and the least because shifting to a federal setup will bring government social services closer to the poor.”

The Fifty United States of America

Accommodation for a Vastly Diverse Populace

Third, state autonomy more easily accommodates governance of a nation comprised of more than 7,000 islands, several religious groups, and more than a hundred ethno-linguistic groups.  The conquests of Spain and Japan and the American occupation have also had a cultural influence on the indigenous people, as well as trade with the Chinese, Arabs, and Malays.  Naturally such diversity entails differing interests, modes of production, and social-ethnic concerns, all of which may require differing regulations or laws designed for the unique circumstances of each state or region.

Now consider some actual examples of federalism taking effect in America, which betoken unique variations in law, taxation, economics, religion, individual liberty, and culture.  The state of Utah is heavily populated by Mormons, while the mountainous state of Tennessee and Alabama are pervaded by evangelical Christians.  Recreational marijuana is legal in California wherein same-sex marriage and a large Filipino populace co-exist.

Massachusetts has mandatory health insurance and permits open carry of a firearm.  New York has the highest taxes, the most stringent gun control laws, business regulations, and the highest rate of fetal abortions.  (Perhaps those are the “New York values” to which Senator Ted Cruz was referring in his 2016 presidential primary run against Donald Trump.)

Florida and Texas have the lowest income tax rates, no mandatory state income tax, and they happen to be the most favorable states for bass fishermen due to their numerous lakes, rivers, and streams.  Philadelphia, the birthplace of America’s constitution, levies a sugary drink or “soda tax.”  For advocates of capital punishment, the options are varied—electrocution in Kentucky, gas inhalation in Arizona, firing squad in Utah, and hanging or lethal injection in Washington.

Cannot our countrymen relate to such varying factors? Consider similar issues of which some are controversial as well as divisive but could easily be addressed by the states or regions—the drug war, the Mindanao conflict, RH Law, the death penalty, marriage dissolution, same-sex marriage recognition and benefits, jeepney fare hikes, VAT, etc.  In terms of core competencies or comparative advantages, Cebu is the exclusive producer of dolomite and graywacke, while Capiz and Ilocos Norte exclusively produce cotton.  Palawan and Boracay are the top tourist destinations of the Philippines, due to their beaches and the latter’s party ambience.

Furthermore, possessing regional or state sovereignty under federalism, allows each state or region to address such issues pursuant to their unique geographical or demographical situation.  “It is one of the happy incidents of the federal system,” contends American Chief Justice Louis Brandeis, “that a single courageous State may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory; and try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country.”  Indeed, impoverished regions can learn from and mimic affluent regions by scrutinizing their economy, tax system, business regulations, and commerce practices, while education administrators in one region can do likewise with successful schools in other regions.  In turn, such competitive regions could eventually decongest Manila.

Such a diversity would naturally appeal to the marginalized or disaffected members of society (e.g., the New People’s Army, Abu Sayyaf, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, the Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap, the Lumads, and Cordillera).  While there is much controversy over the constitutionality of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), the establishment of a Bangsamoro state or region (to replace the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao) via federalism would render the BBL and Bangsamoro Organic Law obsolete, since all states or regions would be equally autonomous simultaneously, at least eventually.

Apart from the ostensible advantages of federalism, critics persist in their tenacity.  Their recalcitrance dissuades others from supporting or even learning more about federalism, hence perpetuating the status quo.  That is why I have addressed some of their criticisms below.

Economy May ‘Go to Hell’

Critics commonly point to the findings of DOF Secretary Carlos Dominguez III who stated that the national government may incur a 6.7% deficit, interest rates would rise by up to 6%, 95% of national government employees may be laid off, and the country’s investment-grade credit ratings may “go to hell.”  ConCom technical working head Wendell Tamayo estimates the cost of establishing 16 federated regions, Bangsamoro and Cordillera regions, four federal courts, and six constitutional commissions at P2.2 trillion, while Rosario Manasan of the Philippine Institute of Development Studies estimates that approximately P55 billion per year will need to be appropriated for the salaries of new federal state elected officials.

Some economists like Victor Abola (professor of the University of Asia and the Pacific) point to a few federal countries which are imperiled by hyperinflation and fear that a federal Philippines may be subjected to the same aftermath.  Due to Venezuela’s current inflation rate of 25%, things cost 250 times more today than a year ago.  Other federal countries like Mexico and Brazil have a similar result due to their localities’ reckless spending on elections, which Abola states is “the primary reason for their hyperinflation episodes . . . which exceeded 4,000% inflation.”

In spite of such negative financial analysis, there are potential measures which could preclude or mitigate some of the aforementioned effects.  For example, ConCom spokesman Ding Generoso has proposed the appropriations for implementing federalism emanate from one of several sources: regional taxes/fees, share of top revenue sources, share of equalization fund, the General Appropriations Act, or natural resources income.  Political scientist Antonio Contreras suggests that some of federalism’s additional costs can be compensated for by the lower costs of transactions, travel, and communication due to decentralization.

Another source would emanate from an expanded tax base due to increased domestic and foreign investments.  In order to be competitive, the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) suggests the corporate income tax (CIT) be lowered from 30% to 20%.  Although the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion 2 (TRAIN 2) law will lower the CIT to 25%, the average rate of the Philippines’ Southeast Asian neighbors is 22.7%.  Hence, a more competitive CIT would attract more investors and create more jobs which, in turn, would translate into more tax revenue.

Also, fiscal incentives for foreign investors in economic zones should be maintained.  For example, the Bases Conversion and Development Act of 1992 grants free port locators a 5% tax on gross income earned.  Unfortunately, TRAIN 2 will repeal such incentives, which the AmCham claimed would “lead to an end to expansions by many foreign investors and a reversal of the success in recent decades in attracting thousands of foreign firms to invest in the country.”

Indeed, this concern is shared by Subic Bay Freeport Chamber of Commerce President Danny Piano who fears the prospect of “capital flight” and Charito Plaza, director general of the Philippine Export Zone Authority, who will continue to defend the fiscal incentives.  Aside from retaining the 5% tax, the financial giant HSBC suggests loosening foreign ownership restrictions via charter change, which would increase the Philippines’ share (currently the lowest) in ASEAN’s “FDI windfall.”

Additionally, all business tax cuts and fiscal incentives should be made permanent, as well as repealing the protectionist clause of the 1987 Constitution in order to boost long-term commitments by investors.  Indeed, such “productive investment,” stated UP professor Maria Bautista, “will generate future streams of income that will not only increase domestic output and income, but also allow the country to service its debt.”  Perhaps the anticipated 95% of laid off national government employees can be reabsorbed into the revitalized private economy or continue their public service on a local level.  Either way, different economic opportunities will abound due to the reallocation of capital precipitated by tax reform and economic liberalization.

ConCom Atty. Rodolfo Robles points out that the national budget is approximately P3.75 trillion and that 40% of it is illegally misdirected.  “Sa simple arithmetic po,” stated Robles, “ayan ay 1.5 trillion, ang napupunta sa graft and corruption.”  He continued to say that at least half of it can be retrieved with a sufficient supply of attorneys.

Recently, in the U.S., Sen. Rand Paul and Rep. Mark Sanford introduced the “Penny Plan” or the “One Percent Solution.”  It mandates Congress to reduce federal spending in all departments by one cent on the dollar.  This would drastically curtail inefficiencies from wasteful spending and balance the budget over a period of five years.  Surely, the Philippines can adapt such a plan in order to cap or mitigate the anticipated deficit as a result of instituting federalism.  Call it the “Centabo Plan.”

I would add that with the regions assuming more fiduciary responsibility, the people will be able to retain more of their hard-earned income, while their region more effectively delivers services otherwise performed by the national government.  Such an arrangement would also allocate resources more efficiently and fairly, since taxpayers residing in Manila would no longer have to fund the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) or condoms for lazy, mendicant perverts residing in Zamboanga City (presuming 4Ps and the RH Law get repealed, or the regions have the option to nullify them by virtue of federalism, just as the U.S. is currently in the process of repealing the unconstitutional Affordable Care Act, putatively “Obamacare”).  Indeed, such decentralization echoes ConCom member Dr. Julio Teehankee’s sentiment that “the proposed draft federal constitution encourages the national government to go on a diet and the regions to go on a muscle-building regimen.”

In terms of hyperinflation, it is highly misleading and even disingenuous to attribute it to federalism per se.  Indeed, Venezuela’s centralized federalism (an oxymoron) is simply a euphemism for its federalized socialism, whose perpetual budget deficits and inability to borrow money, has resorted to excessive printing of increasingly devalued money.  Consequently, hyperinflation has become pervasive.  In the case of Brazil and Mexico, it is ostensibly due to poor management and or flawed public policy in election campaign financing which has led to such high inflation rates.  That could be remedied by transparency legislation or strict penalties for exceeding a fixed limit on campaign financing or outright privatization of campaign financing.  Ergo, hyperinflation need not be attributable to federalism.

Comparing the Philippines to the U.S. and Germany an Apples to Oranges Comparison

Some opponents assert that presenting the economic success of advanced, western, federal countries like the U.S. and Germany is disingenuous, since the Philippines is generally still a developing, Asian country—an apples to oranges comparison.  However, the eastern, federal states of India and Malaysia more closely resemble the Philippines and have a relatively stable government and growing economy.  Malaysia’s economic growth is at 5% with a GDP of $863.3 billion and foreign direct investment (FDI) at $9.9 billion.  India, whose history is also influenced by colonialism and the English language, has a growth rate of 7.3% with a GDP of $8.7 trillion and FDI at $4.5 billion.  Compare those economic indicators to that of the Philippines with a 5.8% growth rate, a GDP of $805.2 billion, and FDI at $7.9 billion.

Increased Power to Local Dynasties and Oligarchs

Apart from the ostensible advantages, some are fearful that federalism will enable political dynasties to dominate the regions.  However, a vigilant and informed citizenry can prevent such occurrences or take counter measures after the fact, such as passing and enforcing anti-dynasty and transparency laws as Senator Nene Pimentel suggests.  However, as I wrote in my commentary entitled Why Manny Pacquiao’s Defeat Could Be a Win for the Country, “I do not oppose dynasties, insofar as their members are fairly and democratically elected and serve the interests of their constituents. However, when they are self-serving or hold power only for namesake, I oppose them and any office holder—dynasty clan or not.”

Anyway, should all remedies fail, citizens and businesses can simply migrate to another region, which is more congenial to their own interests, values, economic preferences, or lifestyle.  Over whom would the dynastic oligarchs rule and depend on for tax revenue, if everyone migrated elsewhere?  Would they then not be compelled to compete with other regions by providing quality government services, e.g., infrastructure, public safety, property rights protection, and contract enforcement?

Federalism Too New and Foreign to the Philippines

Some opponents stress that since federalism is a foreign concept or that the Philippines lacks historical experience in regional autonomy (in contrast to the U.S., Malaysia, and Germany), such a system would be inappropriate or not viable.  However, I contend that El Filibusterismo, a sewer system, jeepneys, smart phones, and a Red Cross did not always exist, and, indeed, did change Philippine life for the better.  Hence, should we have opted to never have introduced them as well?  A prosperous nation demands openness to positive change, and education can accommodate any kind of change, despite its drastic implications.

Anyway, as Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban points out, “The idea of federalism is not really new to us. Salvador Araneta, a delegate to the 1971 Constitutional Convention (ConCon), proposed it in his ‘Bayanikasan Constitution.’ Jose Abueva, the secretary of the same ConCon, has written several papers detailing his version of federalism.”  Even as early as 1900, an Ilocano intellectual named Isabelo de los Reyes, envisioned a federal constitution with seven states comprising the Philippines.

A Sufficient Government Local Code

In terms of regional autonomy, critics point out that the Government Local Code renders federalism obsolete, since the Code is intended to devolve power and disburse internal revenue allotments (IRAs) to localities.  “And yet,” stated Panganiban, “these do not seem to be enough because our Constitution mandates one national police to which the local police are legally beholden, and the Department of Budget and Management which could withhold IRAs.”  Such local autonomy “with strings attached” makes them prone to corruption, or, at least, apathetically unresponsive to the demands of their populace.  Federalism will cut those strings and enable the regions or states to determine their own future.

Neglected Poor Regions

Naysayers of federalism also raise the issue of impoverished regions worsening due to reduced national support.  However, I contend that such dependency or mendicancy is precisely what has retarded their capacity to cultivate their own resources in order to produce prosperity.  It is conventional economic wisdom that prosperous economies consist of most, if not all, of the following key variables: few or no entry barriers to trade, an educated labor force, access to natural resources, adherence to the rule of law, sustainable infrastructure, and high-scale technology.  Those variables can be cultivated by an efficient, corrupt-free government, quality educational institutions, economic liberalization, and pro-growth tax policy.

Recent history is certainly instructive in providing the proper perspective.  Consider the economic development and growth in post-World War II Japan after the atomic bomb converted its cities into ruins, yet the nation is currently the world’s third largest economy.  Within our own borders, after the recall of American naval bases in Subic Bay and the eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991 (wherein the territory was reduced to an ash heap), it was shortly transformed and lauded by various world leaders as a successful trade port and a paragon for economic growth.  I elaborate on Subic in my commentary entitled Why the Senate Needs More Dick.  If Japan and Subic can prosper, under such overwhelming odds, why not any other region or state in the Philippines?

President Fidel Ramos considered Subic Bay such an economic success, he designated it (instead of Manila) as the location for the 1996 APEC summit, in which 18 heads of state met. Among them were Chinese President Jiang Zemin, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, the Sultan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah, and US President Bill Clinton (at the far right).

Perhaps special concessions can be made to the more disadvantaged regions like Mindanao, which should be targeted and temporary as an incentive to be self-sufficient.  Indeed, I would not be averse to Chief Justice Reynato Puno’s concept of “evolving federalism” by which the lesser developed regions remain in the status of “autonomous regions” until they are capable of graduating to the status of “full states.”  In that case, benchmarks should be established instead of a timeline.

Having presented my reasons for the federalist shift while also addressing contrarian views, I also propose that the Constitutional Commission scrutinizes, adapts, and includes the American government’s model—in full or, at least, in part.  If only in part, I propose a few particular safeguards be assimilated into the new Philippine constitution.  In the meantime, it seems appropriate to scrutinize my reasons for including the U.S. model in making the transition to federalism.

Best Ideas

First and foremost, America’s republic is comprised of the best historical ideas.  Indeed, the founders scrutinized the governing systems of the predominant Western civilizations—ancient and contemporary.  These include Greece, Rome, France, and England from which the founders derived the concepts of liberty, justice, trial by jury, separation of powers, democracy, republicanism, and self-government.  The founders meticulously studied the rise and fall of tyrannical governments in those nations, as well as their own experience with King George III in framing a constitution which would preclude such occurrences in the U.S.

Preexisting Government Infrastructure

Second, since the Philippine government was largely framed after the U.S. government, the familiar preexisting federal infrastructure or apparatus of the separate executive, legislative, and judicial branches facilitates a more congenial transition to federalism much more so than abolishing it as parliamentary government advocates and proponents of PDP-Laban Federalism Institute’s model seek to do.  Even the anti-colonialist Delegate Manuel Roxas defended the ratification of the 1935 Constitution (although it is a gross variation of America’s original constitution):

Why have we preferred the Government established under this draft?  Because it is the Government with which we are familiar.  It is the form of government fundamentally such as it exists today; it is the only kind of government we have found to be in consonance with our experience, and with the necessary modification capable of permitting a fair play of social forces and allowing the people to conduct the presidential system.

It must be noted that I do not oppose a parliamentary form of government per se.  I simply would support it only as a last resort, i.e., when all reforms under a presidential federal system (e.g., the establishment of an electoral college to elect the president and a Senate elected by regional legislatures instead of at large) fail, but I digress.


Third, America’s system has proven to be the most resilient.  Constitutional law Professor Hugh Hewitt points out:

The work of collective genius that is the Constitution has been tested by everything from an actual civil war that claimed 600,000 lives to various panics, two world wars, the Great Depression, and the Great Recession, not to mention impeachments and assassinations, political-judicial meltdowns like Florida in 2000, and dozens of scandals—and it does not break.  It is more resilient than any other modern constitution, a remarkable, nearly perfect balance of competing powers and separated authorities that has endured and will endure.  Those who fear it is off the road and in the ditch have to ignore history’s many examples of America righting itself after trauma and setback.

Consider America’s progress in the abolition of slavery, suffrage for women, and civil rights for blacks, all of which happened within 229 years of the establishment of the U.S. government.  In spite of such turbulent occasions, the world’s oldest written supreme law of the land, the U.S. Constitution, remains largely intact.  Contrast that with our three Philippine constitutions—of 1935, 1973, and 1987—all promulgated and implemented within a single century.  Additionally, President Rodrigo Duterte has raised the specter of a revolutionary government, which all betokens the instability of the Philippine government.

Unequivocal Language

Fourth, the language of the U.S. Constitution is very clear in distinguishing the powers of the federal government from that of the states.  Article 1, Section 8 enumerates the federal powers:

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defense and general Welfare of the United States…To borrow Money on the credit of the United States…To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian tribes…To coin money…To establish Post Offices and post Roads…To raise and support Armies.

The Tenth Amendment, the last of the Bill of Rights, betokens the threshold at which the states (or the people) are sovereign, which is the cornerstone of federalism.  It states: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the People.”  The American founder and principal author of the Constitution, James Madison, elaborates on the nature of these powers in Federalist 45:

The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the Federal Government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State Governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace negotiation, and foreign commerce . . . The powers reserved to the several states will extend to all the objects, which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the state.

Indeed, it is those “few and defined” powers of the federal government which accounts for a simple, comprehensible, and short constitution.  Contrast that with our lengthy constitution of 1987, which manifests a government exceeding the size and scope imposed by America’s founders.

Federalism in the Philippines

At the left is a printout of a 53-page copy of the 1987 Philippine Constitution, whereas to the right is a single replicated page of the U.S. Constitution.

Based on Natural Rights

Fifth, it is the first written constitution based on our timeless, ubiquitous, natural rights, which intrinsically circumscribe the national government and betoken the vast range of our individual liberty.  Indeed, the U.S. Declaration of Independence (upon which America’s constitution is based) betokens man’s universal and intrinsic equality and endowment of “certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”  Even the Philippine revolutionary and anti-colonialist Apolinario Mabini acknowledged such rights, stemming from “natural law,” when attributing the success of the U.S. government to the major work of two of its founders, Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine:

The ruler’s success is always to be found in the adjustment of his practical measures to the natural and immutable order of things and to the special needs of the locality, an adjustment that can be made with the help of theoretical knowledge and experience. The source of all failures in government can therefore be found, not in (mistaken) theories but in unprincipled practices arising from base passions or ignorance. If the Government of the United States has been able to lead the Union along the paths of prosperity and greatness, it is because its practices have not diverged from the theories contained in the Declaration of Independence and of the Rights of Man, which constitute an exposition of the principles of natural law implanted by the scientific revolutions in the political field.

Now that I have presented my reasons for supporting the American paradigm on which the Philippines can model, in full or in part, its federal form (namely, a limited, federal, presidential government), I will henceforth present a few key features and safeguards of the U.S. government which I propose be assimilated into the new Philippine constitution.  However, it must be noted that, albeit the Philippine government was partially modeled after the American government, these key features were excluded from being incorporated into the Philippine constitution.

Such safeguards are not only what starkly differentiate the U.S. government from the Philippine government, but they are precisely what account for the general effectiveness of the former’s system of checks and balances—namely, a federalist system by which power is equally divided by a central government and the states, an electoral college to elect the president, a Senate with its members elected by their districts rather than at large, and recourse for the states whenever their sovereignty is threatened by a tyrannical federal government.  Due to much of the public’s oblivion to these distinctions, I have elucidated them in my commentary entitled “Is the Philippine Government an American Replica?”


First, I propose the restructuring of the Philippine Senate pursuant to the American model of equal regional representation, whereby each region or state will elect two senators.  Indeed, this is a drastic deviation of the current method of the populace voting for twenty-four senators nationwide or at large.  Not only would this arrangement be congenial to the unique situation of each region or state, it would empower the small states as well.  Indeed, as American founder William Davie stated, “The protection of the small states against the ambition and influence of the larger members, could only be effected by arming them with an equal power in one branch of the legislature.”  Hence, equal representation in the Senate is a safeguard against what American founder James Madison called “the tyranny of the majority.”

Since the lower chamber of Congress known as the House of Representatives is composed of members elected directly by the people, it has been characterized as embodying the unfettered “passions” of the people.  By contrast, members of the upper house known as the Senate shall be elected or appointed by the regional or state legislatures, whose members are inclined to be refined and informed.  That is why Madison wrote, “The use of the Senate is to consist in its proceedings with more coolness, with more system and with more wisdom, than the popular branch.”  Put more simply by American founder George Washington, the scalding heat of the “tea” of the House is placed into the “senatorial saucer to cool it.”

Additionally, the election or appointment of senators by regional or state legislatures will decrease the influence of special interest groups on senatoriables, since they often fund costly state-wide races.  Political commentator John DeMaggio elaborates:

Senators would no longer be bound by allegiances to these special interests. Candidates would not be obliged to receive funding from political parties for their nonexistent campaign limiting a Senator’s obligation to the national political party. Senators would be more obligated to serve the interests of their State . . . rather than a national political party or special interests.

Hence, the republican nature of the Senate serves as a check and balance on the democratic nature of the House, a distinct feature of American federalism, which ultimately keeps an overreaching federal government at bay.

Electoral College

Second, I propose the establishment of an electoral college (EC) to elect the president as opposed to the current form of direct or popular election.  Being comprised of what American founder John Jay characterizes as “the most enlightened and respectable citizens. . . their votes will be directed to those men only who have become the most distinguished by their abilities and virtue. . . As an assembly of select electors possess. . . the means of extensive and accurate information relative to men and characters, so will their appointments bear at least equal marks of discretion and discernment . . .”

By contrast, the current presidential electoral system via popular vote is often dominated by man’s raw passion and impulse (as in the House) because as American founder Elbridge Gerry stressed, the “people are uninformed, and would be misled by a few designing men.”  Perhaps that accounts for the banal election of incompetent politicians, unfavorable dynasties, and inexperienced celebrities in the Philippines.  Hence, the EC, much as the Senate, serves as a check and safeguard against the populace’s unfettered passion and impulsive drive.

The EC also serves to ensure fair representation for the small and least populated regions or states just as it does in the U.S. Senate.  Consider that of the seventeen regions, the two most populous ones are Southern Tagalog (Region IV) at 14,414,774 and the National Capital Region (Region XIII) at 12,877,253.  Naturally, a direct election of the president would be largely in their favor to the detriment of the less populous regions, such as the Cordillera (Region XIV) at 1,722,006 or Caraga (Region XVI) at 2,596,709.

That is why I propose, in addition to the equivalent number of House members, two representatives be elected or appointed by each region or state in order to constitute a Philippine electoral college (EC) similar to the U.S., whereby each region will be equally represented, regardless of its size.  In so doing, the president will be the president of the whole Philippines, not just of the largest regions or metropolitan areas.

The final purpose of the EC is to facilitate the preclusion of voter fraud.  However, in order for this to be effective, the presidential electoral system must become decentralized.  Just as in the U.S., each individual state legislates its own election laws, each Philippine region or state must do likewise.  In so doing, corrupt federal election officials would find it virtually impossible to fix or “rig” the presidential election due to the electoral autonomy of every region or state and the functioning of local election judges, tasked with multiple responsibilities.

Even when anomalies are discovered after the voting results, they can easily be isolated to one or only a few regions or states, which would make for speedy recounts, as was the case in the 2000 U.S. presidential election wherein a voting dispute occurred between George W. Bush and Al Gore in Florida for only a few weeks.  Contrast that with the dispute between Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos and Leni Robredo which has persisted for over two years.  Consider also how cost-effective the electoral process would be due to decentralization and curtailing of lawsuits.

The electors shall not hold public office in any branch of the federal government, be given a salary, or have tenure, and whereupon its sole function of electing the president and vice-president is executed, the EC shall immediately be dissolved.  Hence, they will be insulated from national political pressure.  Such a temporary function certainly addresses American founder Alexander Hamilton’s concern that presidential selection should not “depend on any preexisting bodies of men who might be tampered with beforehand to prostitute their votes.”  The manner by which electors are selected shall be at the sole discretion of each individual state or region—e.g., via a state or region’s legislature, via a state or region’s governor on the authority of that state or region’s legislature.

It is ostensible that the EC has a positive impact and wide implications on governance.  Such a significant feature, with all its safeguards, is the cornerstone of American federalism, of which the Philippine government is bereft.  Indeed, the EC is also an alternative to a direct democracy (as is currently the case), authoritarianism, and parliamentary government.


Third, America’s founders brilliantly concocted two checks as a remedy for the states to counter an overreaching or tyrannical national government.  The remedies are state nullification of unconstitutional federal laws and an Article V Convention of States (COS).  The former is, according to Jefferson, “the rightful remedy” against “all unauthorized acts done” by the national government and was executed effectively in defiance of a federal embargo, the Alien and Sedition Acts, and the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850.  In my commentary entitled The Peak of Tyranny and End of Its Destruction, I cited two more recent examples in which Montana, Alabama, and Wyoming amended their state constitutions, nullifying Obamacare.

In defiance to President Barack Obama’s executive orders to banning certain types of firearms, several governors, state legislators, and sheriffs have taken measures to quell or nullify any presidential decree, which did not conform to their own state’s gun regulations.  Some legislators have gone so far as to prepare legislation which would criminalize any attempt of federal agents to enforce the new federal gun ownership restrictions.  One sheriff in Oregon (Tim Mueller) even wrote a letter to Vice President Joe Biden in which he declared that neither he nor his deputies would enforce any federal gun law, which he deems unconstitutional.  Among the states which exercised such recalcitrant acts were Mississippi, Kentucky, Oregon, Minnesota, Alabama, Tennessee, Wyoming, Utah, Alaska, Florida, and Texas.

Convention of States

In Federalist 85, Hamilton alludes to the second remedy when he says, “. . . we may safely rely on the disposition of the state legislatures to erect barriers against the encroachments of the national authority.”  He is referring to assembling a Convention of States (COS), which is actually embodied in Article V of the U.S. Constitution:

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress ….

Put plainly and simply, thirty-four states of the U.S. must consent to deliberation in a convention of states (not a constitutional convention, which would be a formidable option) to propose constitutional amendments.  Thirty-eight states must ratify the amendments in order for them to become binding and effective.  In this way, the states can put the national government in check regardless of who occupies the presidency, Congress, or the Supreme Court.  As of this writing, twelve states have passed a COS resolution.  Furthermore, the aforementioned remedies as state nullification and an Article V COS are essential in lawfully preserving federalism, while precluding “mob rule.”

Article 5: The Amendment Process in the U.S.

In the Philippine context, a clause pertinent to regional or state nullification of intrusive federal laws can and should be annexed to the draft constitution in order to preclude jurisdictional discrepancies, wherein both the regions and national government purport to defend and uphold the Constitution.  Unfortunately, such a clause is nonexistent in the U.S. Constitution, which has been the cause for the aforementioned discrepancies and can thus serve as an example of unintended consequences from which the Philippines can learn.  In terms of annexing a COS clause to the draft constitution, the number of regions needed for deliberation and ratification will be smaller than our U.S. counterpart, since the number of regions created and established via federalism will be significantly smaller than the fifty states of the U.S. (e.g., eleven pursuant to LDP Institute’s model and eighteen pursuant to RBH 8).

Furthermore, a Senate elected by the regions or states, an electoral college to elect the President, and recourse for the regions or states against an overreaching federal government are checks and balances safeguarding the sovereignty of the regions or states and the people.  They are elements, which, in spite of their historical significance to American federalism, have never been assimilated into Philippine government.  Perhaps now is the time in the clamor for federalism and as an alternative to a costly and more drastic shift to a federal parliamentary system.

However, in spite of the ostensible advantages of my federalist proposal, it must be noted that it is not a “magic bullet” or the single, perfect solution to everything ailing the Philippines.  Rather it is a remedy to address certain issues, which, in order to have maximum positive impact, must be executed in concert with other measures, e.g., the enforcement of current laws, economic liberalization to curb protectionist policies and attract direct foreign investments, and cultural changes in order to cultivate an informed, disciplined, industrious, and active citizenry which will strengthen preexisting, fundamental, social institutions.  The latter is imperative, lest the electorate continues to elect incompetent or corrupt politicians, and that will occur under any system of governance—unitary or federal, presidential or parliamentary.

In conclusion, my friends and countrymen, I have herein presented my reasons for supporting a shift to an American form of federalism or, at least, an adaptation therefrom.  I have also presented the safeguards to preserve such a system of governance to be included in the draft constitution.  With such clamor for positive change—namely, the rapid creation of new jobs, the alleviation of poverty and poverty-related crime, the curtailment of corruption, the end to secession of Mindanao, a new sense of pride and civic responsibility to a responsive government, and the liberty to choose one’s life with one’s feet—coupled with a president with an iron political will and desire for federalism, a constituent assembly can take the essential measures.  I now defer to the aforementioned Constitutional Commission to deliberate on behalf of We the People of the Republic of the Philippines.

Mabuhay ang Pederalismo!  Mabuhay ang Pilipinas!

Bibliographical References

  • Anastacio, Leia. (2016). The Foundations of the Modern Philippine State. New York, New York: Cambridge University Press.
  • Majul, Cesar. (1996). The Political and Constitutional Ideas of the Philippine Revolution. Quezon City: University of the Philippines Press.

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Jose A. Acelajado Isa lang ang tanong: pwede ba nating pagtiwalaan ang ating

kasalukuyang senate super majority at house super majority na ang kanilang gagawin ay ayon sa kabutihan ng ating bansa? Malinaw ngayon na meron tayong super majority sa Senate at sa house na subservient sa mga kagustuhan ni duterte. Sabihin na natin, na magandang ang paliwanag mo, ikaw ba ang susundin ng mga senador at congressmen? Hindi ba malinaw na si duterte at ang kanyang mga aso sa senado at kongreso ang susundin ng Senate at House supermajority na mga tuta ni duterte? Ngayon, hindi mo ba narinig ang sinabi ni duterte? Na kung hindi magkakaroon ng pederalismo ay magkakagulo sa ating bansa ? Si duterte mismo na pangulo ng ating bansa ang nagsasabi. Malinaw ang pambabraso ni duterte para masunod lamang ang kanyang sariling kagustuhan. Hindi ang kagustuhan ng mga mamamayan. Yes magaling kang magpaliwanag, pero may saysay ba ang iyong paliwanag? Pakikinggan ka ba ng mga tuta ni duterte sa senado at sa kongreso? Sino ka at sino si duterte?
Marcial Bonifacio I cannot dispute the validity of your points, kaibigang Jose. I can only say
that just as we both are cognizant of the prospects you raise, surely there must be other public servants in Congress, who would sympathize with us and keep Duterte in check like Sen. Gordon.

However, I’m inclined to think that Duterte’s ostensible threats are just uttered to persuade the electorate to support the shift to federalism. Sa totoo lang, it is a situation in which there is no perfect solution, ngunit naisip ko Duterte would willingly step down if federalism is implemented during his term, kahit it may be forced. Surely even his own supporters would demand it, if he refuses.
Marcial Bonifacio Hindi ako sang-ayon sa parliamentary na gobyerno, kaibigang Orion,
ngunit at least we can unite sa pagtatanggol ng federalismo. Ito ang aking huling paliwanag:
Orion Perez D Well, whether we like it or not, Parliamentary is better than Presidential.
No ifs, no buts.

Yan ang resulta ng research ng mga experto. Kahit paano bali-baliktarin, palpak ang Presidential eh. Ba’t pipilitin ang palpak, diba?
Hindi yan kagustuhan. Katotohanan lang po.Eh tayong lahat gusto nating kumain ng masarap na pagkain na mamantika at maraming cholesterol… Eh ayon sa ciencia, hindi nakakabuti yung bad cholesterol na madalas naandoon sa mga masasarap na pagkain.Kasalanan ba yan ng mga nutritional scientists na yan ang nadiskubrihan nila?No choice, dude.If you want Federalism to work in the Philippines, it has to be Federal-Parliamentary.
Marcial Bonifacio I appreciate your tenacity for pushing for a parliamentary system as
well as concocting the food analogy. Gayunman, sa totoo lang, not all delicious foods are laden with cholesterol. There are many fruits and vegetables, which are healthful and just as delicious. Even healthful bland foods (like tofu) can be prepared, seasoned, or cooked in a way to be pleasing to the taste buds. Tungkol sa unhealthful foods, paminsan-minsan, only certain ingredients need to be discontinued or replaced, such as the cooking oil or dressing in order to make it healthful. One need only taste the food upon each modification in order to know if it is still delicious.

I am not completely averse to a parliamentary system, kaibigang Orion. Sa kabilang banda, as I stated sa paliwanag ko,I am open to it, only if all other reforms fail, such as economic liberalization, adopting an electoral college to elect the president, federalizing the government, etc. Only by making such adjustments (as with the unhealthful food combination) can we know with absolute certainty that a presidential system is truly flawed or insufficient. Until then, let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater dahil meron maraming sanhi ng pagkapagtagumpay ng bayan.

Also, you mentioned the studies from “experts” who have scrutinized the subject of presidential and parliamentary systems. Gayunman, as I pointed out sa paliwanag ko, “the founders scrutinized the governing systems of the predominant Western civilizations—ancient and contemporary. These include Greece, Rome, France, and England from which the founders derived the concepts of liberty, justice, trial by jury, separation of powers, democracy, republicanism, and self-government. The founders meticulously studied the rise and fall of tyrannical governments in those nations, as well as their own experience with King George III in framing a constitution which would preclude such occurrences in the U.S.” I also listed their remedies, should their checks and balances be surpassed.

Gayunpaman, as I said earlier, let’s unite and focus on getting our kababayans to support federalism (whatever the form), and urge them to express it to our public servants sa Kongreso. We can focus on the form later, just as the House and Senate have postponed debate on voting jointly or separately in order to focus on the actual constitutional amendments.

Like ReplySaturday, February 10, 2018 at 1:45 PM (33w)Edited

Edwin Morales Hindi ka dapat basta basta lang maging anti-parliamentary, try mo

kayang ipag-kumpara yung Presidential sa Parliamentary system, sabihin mo samin kung ano ang mas maganda base sa naresearch mo. Dapat bago maging anti ganitong usapin dapat matuto munang mag-compare ehhhh
Warlito Nobleza Vicente I’m an anarchist, I don’t believe in governments. I don’t need to
pay anybody to tell me what I can and can’t do with my life.
Marcial Bonifacio Anong nangyari, kaibigang Warlito? You used to support great thinkers
like Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, who supported a limited government in order to maximize our liberty.
Warlito Nobleza Vicente Marcial Bonifacio Those “great thinkers” were slave owners. I
woke up. Limited government does not stay limited, look at the US now, after 300 years, the limited government has become a leviathan.
Alvin M Diesta Welcome back Bong! Looking forward to more radical views!
Warlito Nobleza Vicente Alvin M Diesta The faster government can act, the faster they
can raise taxes, pass regulations against you – governments in whatever shape, size, form are bullshit.
Last thing I need is someone to tell me, I have to give up x% of my income for the greater good – fuck it
Alvin M Diesta I hear you. Every year what I pay in taxes could buy fully loaded BMWs.
Maybe it is time for me to work for the government. Get paid for doing nothing.
Warlito Nobleza Vicente kaya ako, screw it. I stopped working my day job pata walang
makuhang tax sa akin. lahat ng transaksyon ko, in cash, para walang money trail, nothing to tax. meron naman kaming properties na nasa tabing dagat – we built the house fully paid in cash – walang mortgage, walang interest – di kikita ang bangko sa akin  I grow my own food – or buy from the farmer direct – tax-free!!! 

e di beachfront resort living ako for the rest of my life though meron pa mang di maiwasan na tax – that’s on the business not on me – and we take measures to minimize the amounts paid  i’ve eliminated a lot of avenues for the state to tax me – mafederal man yan, ma LGU man yan, ma unitary man yan, ma parliamentary man yan – I don’t give a fuck, they can kiss my ass


Alvin M Diesta Nice! I hope to follow soon in your lifestyle once I retire from this. How
about those Filipino Vixens that are half our age?
Warlito Nobleza Vicente dami dito bro kung gustuhin lang talaga.
Warlito Nobleza Vicente am learning a lot with this new lifestyle – graudally move
towards off-grid living… lots to look forward to – tesla style free energy using magnets para ma eliminate ang bayad sa electricity  

why be a bank slave paying car loans, my crib and my  office is so close to each other – ala namang interesting to see downtown in the first place, am too tied up sprucing up the beach, feeling ko parang nasa Sarasota pa rin ako 
Alvin M Diesta Maganda yan bro. You are living the dream! Oceanfront property, no
taxman, no oligarchs, just nature at its finest. Parang Sarasota. Haha. Name the place Bangsarasota.

Marcial Bonifacio I cannot dispute that those great thinkers and founders 

of America  were  slaveholders, kaibigang Warlito. However, the institution of slavery was passed on to them by the British. Anyway, most of the founders opposed slavery and banning the importation of slaves was the first step in the institution’s abolition. Circumstances were such that it could not be abolished immediately, but Jefferson himself called for the abolition of it in his first draft of America’s Declaration of Independence, which pro-slavery representatives rescinded.…/jeffersons…

I understand your position on America’s overreaching government, my friend, but that is only due to an apathetic, uninformed populace, which enabled such a “Leviathan.” The founders understood and expected the populace to be informed, vigilant, and always suspicious of government. I believe the American people have finally awakened, with the peak of tyranny during the Obama administration. One need only observe the resurgence of constitutional conservatism manifested at the state and federal level. Even Trump has scaled back on regulations and has been successful in repealing the individual Obamacare mandate. Therefore, be not disheartened, my friend, limited government is returning with a vengeance.

On your lifestyle, I admire you for your self-sufficient aspirations. Perhaps you have tremendous patience in having to renounce many conveniences and live like Jack Bauer from “24.” I’m reading some survivalist material myself, since such knowledge is useful as you yourself are discovering.

Warlito Nobleza Vicente It don’t matter if it was passed on to them. 

In plain terms, America’s founding fathers are hypocrites – you can’t be talking about freedom – and yet have slaves.
Alvin M Diesta Remember the movie 300 na ang mga Spartan daw for freedom at ang
Persia for tyranny? Sino sa dalawa ang may slaves? Ang mga gagong Greek! Mga Spartan pinagpapatay ang mga helot. Persia had no slaves. May human rights dahil kay Cyrus. They freed slaves from their conquered lands most notable the jews in Babylon. Pero sa pelikula ng Hollywood ang mga puti (Greek at Roman) daw ang for freedom. Mga gago pala sila eh.
Warlito Nobleza Vicente That’s Hollyweird for you, a stinking den of war mongering,
state worshipping pedophiles and sexual predators. It’s nothing but a propaganda mouthpiece for the military industrial complex, a vehicle for hypnotizing the masses to become submissive braindead sheep.

Marcial Bonifacio Kaibigang Warlito, I concede your point about the hypocrisy of

Jefferson and Madison owning slaves. However, surely you will concede that they should not be exclusively judged by their personal life of owning slaves, but to a larger extent, in what they strategically did in order to liberate them. In the grand scheme of things, America’s Constitution was the incubator of slave liberation, and the founders should be rightfully acknowledged for that, hindi ba?

Warlito Nobleza Vicente In the grand scheme of things they are still full of shit. 

The constitution they came up with ended up with a leviathan state.Moreover, the US still remains a colony of the Brit.

LikeReplyTuesday, February 13, 2018 at 7:37 PM (32w)

Marcial Bonifacio That may very well be so about America’s “Leviathan” state, but

that is due to the ignorance of the American populace, not to the founders. Anyway as I said earlier, my friend, the sleeping giant has awakened, and that Leviathan will have to die inevitably but gradually. Trump and conservatives are finally starting the process.

LikeReplyTuesday, February 13, 2018 at 7:49 PM (32w)

Warlito Nobleza Vicente Unfortunately for Americans, Trump is still a stooge for the               military industrial complex. Left wing and right wing belong to the same turkey 

LikeReplyTuesday, February 13, 2018 at 7:50 PM (32w)

Marcial Bonifacio Actually, it is quite fortunate for Americans, kaibigang Warlito,                      because a sufficient, well-equipped military is what has kept America safe from                      foreign  invaders. It is also fortunate for our kababayans on the West Philippine Sea              vis-a-vis China and the world in general.

Warlito Nobleza Vicente Artificial lines drawn by racists to divide humanity have                     no appeal to me

LikeReplySaturday, February 17, 2018 at 6:01 PM (32w)

Marcial Bonifacio Do you really believe Trump is racist as many leftists do, kaibigan ko?

Marcial Bonifacio More important, it will relinquish power back to the people.

Joseph Solís Alcayde Alberici We should not be hasty about federalism under American                  style. We have to gradually devolve national government responsibilities to local one                    instead of copying any federal governments in the world without considering Philippine                context.

Marcial Bonifacio Perhaps not, kaibigang Joseph, but we should certainly not hasten the
shift to a parliamentary system, although I do not completely oppose such a system when all else has failed. I did mention in my commentary that the American system of federalism should be adapted to the Philippine situation in order to be more congenial to the people. I’m also not opposed to gradually doing so, as I did mention my openness to Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban’s “evolving federalism. “
Joseph Solís Alcayde Alberici Mas feasible pa nga eh ang shift to parliamentary form o
government keysa sa federal form kasi sa parliamentary, ang kailangan lang gawin ay gawing lamang ceremonial position ang pagka Pangulo samantala ang shift to federalism, taon pa ang dapat gugulin upang ang mga mahihirap na rehiyon ay hindi mapagiwanan. Kung mag federalismo tayo ngayon, baka ang Bangsamoro ay hihiwalay nang tuluyan sa bansa natin tulad nangyari sa Singapore noon sa Malaysia.
Marcial Bonifacio Marahil tama ka tungkol sa feasibility ng parliamentarism,
kaibigang Joseph, ngunit that would require a drastic change sa infrastructure ng gobyerno, which could be problematic sa assimilation ng mga voters dahil sa confusion. It would also be more costly. Sa katotohanan, implementing an adapted U.S.-style federal-presidential system is more feasible and cheaper dahil sa preexisting infrastructure ng gobyerno.
Alexander Yalung Agree..i prefer that we msintain president position with federal form..
Alejandro C. Patagnan Before we could commit ourselves to the change in our
government, we have to understand in the FIRST PLACE to ask WHAT IS THE NATURE OF GOVERNMENT? WHAT IS THE PROPER AND ONLY FUNCTION OF THE GOVERNMENT? WHY DO WE NEED A GOVERNMENT? iS IT NECESSARY TO HAVE A GOVERNMENT? Those are the basic fundamental question we must deal with first..

Marcial Bonifacio My answer to that, kaibigang Alejandro, is that the government’s only

function is to protect our unalienable rights and territorial sovereignty, which is why I advocate for federalism. Prosperity and other advantages should follow. What say you?
Marcial Bonifacio Magandang presentation sa video mo (
v=Atwzud6n15I&feature=share), kaibigang Bernardo. Sa panlahat, we are in agreement. I appreciate your desire to limit the number of states to eight in order to retain the symbolic relevancy ng ating bandila, ngunit naisip ko it is more practical to have as many states as possible ganito ng balak ng LPP (League of Provinces of the Philippines), whose members seek 81 states. Sa totoo lang, that would be more congenial for such a diverse populace. We could convert the number of stars to 81 in order to accommodate the change sa bandila.

Tungkol sa Kongreso, mas gusto ko ng bicameral house in order for one to keep the other in check as it is supposed to currently work. My primary concern is on the election of senators. In order for them to represent their constituents in each state, they should be elected exclusively by the voter residing in their respective states, sa halip ng at large. That would ensure that all states are represented equally and that the larger states would not dominate over the smaller ones. That assumes that an electoral college will be established on that basis, which will ultimately elect the president.

In spite of those differences, nagagalak ako we agree on a presidential system. Syempre my proposal is based on the American model, which is discussed sa paliwanag ko.

Marcial Bonifacio I appreciate your passion para sa ating bayan, kaibigang Lingling, ngunit
hindi ako sang-ayon sa iyong punto na the American presidential system has failed the Philippines. Sa kabilang banda, it has not been implemented fully dahil sa malaking variations. As I pointed out sa lathala ko, we currently have no federalist system (which in itself would drastically improve our presidential system by decentralizing it), an electoral college which elects the president, or a Senate whose representatives are elected by the voters residing in their corresponding states or regions sa halip ng at large. Our country has never had those aspects essential to a successful democratic republic as in America. Samakatuwid, it is premature or even erroneous to conclude that America’s presidential system has failed us as you have done, kaibigan ko. It is comparing apples to oranges.

Tungkol sa iyong punto na the presidential system has caused gridlock, that is precisely the function of a system in which the voters are divided. Even America’s founders intended that bills do not so easily pass through Congress, which forces the people to thoroughly scrutinize all proposals before they become law dahil once a bad proposal is legislated, mahirap na iyan to repeal it. The same holds true with impeaching the president. If it were so easy, then I dare say that every presidential election cycle would precipitate an impeachment, which would simply destabilize the government. If an informed electorate chooses the president, impeachment would not be such a pressing issue.

In terms of an authoritarian presidency, that can be remedied by amending the Constitution limiting his power. I would even go so far as to say that the power of the federal government sa panlahat needs to be limited in order to maximize the liberty of our kababayans. Sa lathala ko, I hold a copy of our voluminous 1987 Constitution next to a single page of the U.S. Constitution. Maliwanag na iyan meron malaking pagkaiba, hindi ba?

Tungkol sa punto mo ng 1973 Constitution, how well did that turn out? Unang-una, it was a very short-lived form of government. It did not even endure for half a generation for our kababayans to assimilate. Pangalawa, such a government was simply the extension of Marcos’s own power. Samakatuwid, it is a moot point to say that our kababayans our sufficiently familiar with a parliamentary system.

Nga pala, kaibigang Lingling, as I stated sa paliwanag ko, I am not completely averse to a parliamentary system. Gayunman, I will favor it only when all reforms to our presidential system fail. In that case, I will even write a paper in support of a parliamentary system and actively campaign for it.

Tama ka tungkol sa position ng PDP Laban. Kaya nga mas gusto ko ng balak ng RBH No. 8 (Resolution of Both Houses No. 8).

Lingling Gandong Nahinto ang 1973 Constitution which is Semi-Presidential

System ng  dahil kay Korikong Aquino. Ayaw kasi ni Korikong Cory Aquino aka Mother of Philippine Oligarchy ng accountable government. I gonna tell you again I AM NOT SUPPORTING PARLIAMENTARY SYSTEM NOR PRESIDENTIAL SYSYEM. I am in favor of SEMI-PRESIDENTIAL SYSYEM again SEMI-PRESIDENTIAL SYSTEM like France and Russia. It’s absolutely wrong to treat Semi-Presidential System as Parliamentary System for your information France under French 3rd Republic and French 4th Republic are under by Parliamentary system and the French citizens are not satisfied with Parliamentary system because of political instability.

Lingling Gandong The Presidential system cause too much gridlock because the

President can block any legislation whether the bill is constitutional or unconstitutional. Even the US leads to government shutdown even though a lots of money still flow in the government.

In France the Semi-Presidential System avoids gridlock. Do you know why? The French President have limited suspensive veto power at all once the Constitutional Council declare the bill is constitutional the President will sign the bill into law. Do you know? France Semi-Presidential System avoid the “loss of supply” or “lost of budget” like what happen in Parliamentary regime countries which trigger to snap election and France Semi-Presidential also avoid the “government shutdown” like what happen in Presidential regime countries. Because in French 5th Republic Constitution they have Article 49.3 which means if there’s an disagreement of budget bill, the bill is automatically pass without reaching absolute majority vote and ONLY motion of no confidence can block the bill.

LikeReplyWednesday, March 14, 2018 at 9:16 PM (28w)Edited

Lingling Gandong Cory Aquino aka Mother of Philippine Oligarchy have no intention to

reform the 1973 Constitution. I won’t deny this at all, the 1973 Constitution which is Semi-Presidential System but the President is extremely powerful because the President have decisive power to remove the Prime Minister and Cabinet Ministers without Parliament approval. Korikong Aquino aka Mother of Philippine Oligarchy have no intention to reduce the powers of presidency but she want to boost the power of presidency, kaya nga langaw tingin niya kay the last Prime Minister Salvador Laurel.

Marcial Bonifacio Lingling, kaibigan ko, I appreciate your perspective, and perhaps, I

stand corrected tungkol sa parliamentary system. I was broadly referring to any system with a prime minister and a group of lawmakers whose relationship to the executive is such that the separation of powers is not so vast unlike our American counterpart, although I am inclined to support a semi-presidential over a full parliamentary system. Gayunman, para sa akin, even a semi-presidential system sounds too complicated compared to the simple American system of three separate branches of government. Besides, France’s Fifth Republic is still relatively new compared to our American counterpart, which has been extant since 1789, still using the same constitution.

Tungkol sa paksang government shutdowns sa America, they are not as severe as you might think. Unang-una, America’s government is constitutionally limited to protecting the unalienable rights of its citizens and maintaining national security, nothing more. The only thing the shutdowns have prompted are the closing of offices in which federal bureaucrats work and the closing of national parks—elements which are hardly essential to the regular functioning of the federal government. Police and military operations continued. Pangalawa, most of the shutdowns have only endured for a few days or weeks, being virtually inconsequential to the lives of Americans. Pangatlo, elections will ultimately settle unfavorable policies of lawmakers. Samakatuwid, kaibigan ko, gridlock ay necessary evil sa republican government. It is a check and is preferable to the option of an overly active legislature which continually passes bad bills and precisely what America’s founders understood. Kaya nga I remain firm on supporting an adaptation of RBH-8 sa ating bayan.

LikeReplyWednesday, March 28, 2018 at 2:50 PM (26w)

Lingling Gandong Marcial Bonifacio Semi-Presidential System is not not complicated at
all. In Semi-Presidential System it does have a partial separation of powers not strict separation of powers same as Presidential system.

1. The executive is divided into two the President is independent from legislature whereas the Prime Minister and Cabinet Ministers are subjugated to confidence of Parliament.

2. The legislative powers are vested to the Parliament and limited legislative powers to the Government Ministers.

3. Judiciary are strictly separated to the executive and legislative branches of government.

Government Shutdown brings political gridlock, the government shutdown even there’s still plenty of money flow in the government kung saan malaking kagagohan, in Semi-Presidential System of Government they can avoid that phenomenon what’s why in France they have a constitutional provision that a budget bill is considered pass without Parliament vote and only the motion of no confidence can block it. And also it avoid the parliamentary system lost of supply when France was under by Parliamentary system they face instability when there’s a disagreement on budget they dissolve the Parliament and call for snap election. In Semi-Presidential System the constitutionality of the bill is very important in order the Parliament will prevent passing bad bills. Presidential system of democracy failed us! Giving a President a too much excessive executive powers has no future to the republic. I rather say checks of the bank account of the Tongressmen I mean Congressmen for lack of political disciplinary, that’s why Philippines needs to switch at Federal Semi-Presidential so that political party turncoastism will be stop and political party disciplinary should be promoted!

Lingling Gandong We need a system of government where the Government Ministers
are responsible to the legislature we need an accountable government. The Presidential system has no government accountability, look if we are Federal Semi-Presidential System of Government maybe former Minister of Justice Leila Delimaw, former Minister of Social Welfare and Development Stinky Dinky Soliman and former Minister of Interior of Local Government Mar Epal Roxas, are roasted alive and humiliated to the max to the Parliament or else beat up by an Members of Parliament like in Taiwan. Since we are Presidential system they are shameless to the max! 

We need to stop the celebrity oriented presidency and cult of personality ! In Presidential system the celebrity oriented presidency and cult of personality cannot be avoided! If there’s a separation of religion and Government, there must be a separation of politics and celebrity! We need to have a President who will rule and have political experience not base on cult of personality and celebrity oriented presidency! That’s why in PDP Laban propose constitution it provisionize a Indirect Presidential Primary Elections, where Members of Parliament will elect who will represent a party to run for direct Presidential election in order to avoid the cult of personality and celebrity oriented presidency.
In Semi-Presidential System the celebrity oriented presidency and cult of personality can be avoided if choose to, do you know why? The President of France (President of French 5th Republic) are former Prime Minister, former Cabinet Ministers, former Members of National Assembly, former Senators and former Members of European Parliament.And I am incline to support the Presidential system of government because it gives a President a excessive executive powers it sounds like an elected temporary dictator sit at the Presidential palace doing not much and less accountability. That’s why President Duterte wants Semi-Presidential and Federalism to reduce more Presidential powers..I forgot to tell you this, in Semi-Presidential System the President have decisive powers such as he/she have a power to declare state of emergency or martial law in order to protect the territorial integrity, to repeal rebellion and to repeal invasion and the pattern of declaring martial law or declaring of state of emergency still pattern to our 1987 Philippine Constitution, just read the PDP Laban propose constitution, the powers of presidency are quite similar to the 1987 Constitution.
Lingling Gandong And btw fuck that Two Party System! Multiparty system doesn’t
work in Presidential system because every lawmaker have no party disciplinary tawag diyan may kanya kanyang trip. Hindi kagaya sa Semi Presidential system kailangan talaga ng multiparty system kasi ang mga mambabatas ay disiplinado ng isang partido. 1 political party group 1 goal. Hindi yung 1 political party group but every member have different trip.
Marcial Bonifacio A semi-presidential system may not be complicated to you or
parliamentarians, Lingling, but perhaps to the masses. Currently, many citizens voluntarily waive their right to vote. How much more so if we adopt such a new system to which many of our kababayans are oblivious.

America’s founders established a fairly strict separation of powers in order to preclude any one branch from amassing too much power. James Madison, known as the father of the U.S. Constitution, wrote that each branch has its own ambition and that “ambition must be made to counteract ambition” which is “necessary to control the abuses of government.” A close connection of the legislature and the executive is the antithesis of their independence and separation.
Like you, I also oppose celebrity and personality-oriented executives. Kaya nga mahalaga ang electoral college at sufficiently informed voters.The Fifth French Republic is still young. I’ll give it another 200 years before considering it as a model for RP. Nga pala, what is excessively powerful about the presidency that you oppose a presidential system, Lingling?
Lingling Gandong Marcial Bonifacio how does Semi-Presidential System view as
complicated towards Filipinos? I don’t think so because there’s a direct election of the President in Semi-Presidential System the President have a mandate. I told you many times if the Philippines becomes Semi-Presidential System, THE RIGHT OF VOTING OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC WILL NEVER LOSE TO THE FILIPINO CITIZEN, hindi mawawalan ng karapatan bumuto ng Pangulo ang sambayanang Pilipino kapag maging Semi-Presidential System tayo. Excessively powerful presidency leads to cult of personality and creeping to autboritarianism. In Semi-Presidential System since there’s a partial separation of powers, THE PRESIDENCY IS INDEPENDENT FROM LEGISLATURE so it’s not antithesis to the legislative, only the President’s Government Ministers or Cabinet Ministers are subjugated to confidence of Parliament in general they are part of Parliament whereas the President is not. Yeah French 5th Republic still young but many countries that used Parliamentary system that suffer from Parliamentary paralysis due to political instability they switch to Semi-Presidential System, most former Soviet Union and Former communist countries of Eastern Europe are switching to Semi-Presidential System and also some Presidential system countries switch to Semi-Presidential System so that they can get a benefits from Parliamentary system and Presidential system because they want a system of government where the Government is accountable to the legislature.

Lingling Gandong Marcial Bonifacio do you think using electoral college can avoid the

celebrity and personality oriented presidency? I don’t think so, look at Donald Trump he didn’t have any political experience Donald Trump is a celebrity he don’t have a political experience at all, then some people in US they want Oprah Winfrey to become a US President to compete with Donald Trump in next Presidential election. That’s why we need Semi-Presidential System of Government to avoid celebrity oriented presidency and cult of personality presidency. Since the President must be former Prime Minister, former Members of Parliament and former Cabinet Ministers.
Jose Grecia Federal form of government
Magiging autonomous ang mga states na kasapi nito.
How will you divide the coubtry into states?
Only a few areas na magiging self sufficient In Terms of money and resources.
Hindi basta basta ang federalism.
Dynasties rin issue dyan dahil what will prevent political elites from controlling the state they are in?
Lingling Gandong Iba ang political dynasty ng Pilipinas at iba ang political dynasty ng
US, Canada, Singapore at France. Sa atin kapag ang pangalan popular na popular sa lahat, marami kang mauuto, maraming kang pera na kaya mo bayaran ang mga electorate at kahit walang political platform or political mandate magkakaroon talaga ng horrible political dynasty.
Jose Grecia Kaya nga think twice sa federalism na yan
LikeReply· Wednesday, March 28, 2018 at 6:19 PM (26w)
Lingling Gandong Sa PDP Laban propose constitution meron provision to strict
political dynasty.
Marcial Bonifacio Tama si Lingling tungkol sa proposed anti-dynasty bill, ngunit naisip
ko that should be a decision left to each individual state or region. Personally, I think some dynasties are beneficial. Halimbawa, the Gordons have positively impacted Olongapo, hindi ba, Jose?
Jeronimo Constantina “Third, state autonomy more easily accommodates governance of a
nation comprised of more than 7,000 islands, several religious groups, and more than a hundred ethno-linguistic groups.” But then, Tagalog “Central Luzon” state shares the language, culture and attitudes towards non-Tagalog languages of Manila and suburbs. Clearly, Central Luzon Tagalogs should absorbed by Mega Manila.Indung Kapampangan Federal State
Twitter Comments:

Why Filipinos Should Give a Damn about Panatag Shoal

By Marcial Bonifacio

My friends and countrymen, within 200 nautical miles of the exclusive economic zone of the Republic of the Philippines (RP) is a small cluster of rocks, encompassed by a body of water, known as Panatag Shoal to Filipinos and Scarborough Shoal internationally.  It was the subject of dispute between RP and China.  In 2013, President Benigno Aquino III filed a case before the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) for which it ruled in RP’s favor in 2016.  Predictably, imperial China does not acknowledge the ruling and insists on claiming 90% of the international waters via its own “nine-dash line” metric, which the PCA has invalidated pursuant to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).  The PCA also declared Panganiban (Mischief) Reef, Recto (Reed) Bank, and Ayungin (Second Thomas) Shoal as “part of the exclusive economic zone and continental shelf of the Philippines, and are not overlapped by any possible entitlement of China.”

Perhaps you all are pondering why we Filipinos should care about some cluster of rocks surrounded by water.  If President Rodrigo Duterte defends it, will that put food on our tables, educate our kids, or improve the quality of our lives?  If not, then why should any of us be concerned, especially since it risks provoking a war with China—a state of affairs which appears to be nothing short of a suicide mission?  Indeed, these are all legitimate and ubiquitously relevant questions worthy of addressing.

First and foremost is the legal issue of sovereignty and constitutional mandate of the President.  Since the PCA upheld RP’s sovereignty over Panatag Shoal, it is the government’s duty to defend it.  Pursuant to Art. XII, Sect. 2 of the 1987 Constitution, “The State shall protect the nation’s marine wealth in its archipelagic waters, territorial sea, and exclusive economic zone. . .”

Dereliction of this duty could be construed as betrayal of public trust, which is an impeachable offense according to Supreme Court Justice Antonio Carpio and Sen. Richard Gordon.  Aside from that, forfeiting our sovereign territory will only serve as a dangerous precedent for other potential encroachments by China.  What if China claims it recently unearthed a map indicating their sovereignty over Philippine Rise (formerly Benham Rise) or even the entire province of Palawan?  Not only is ceding Panatag Shoal a slippery slope towards imperial tyranny, it calls into question RP’s adherence to the Constitution and the rule of law—international law—in this case.

Second, Panatag Shoal is abundant in fish and natural resources, including minerals and gas.  Such resources can be utilized by consumers and businesses, while driving energy costs down, creating more jobs, raising living standards, and generating more tax revenue.  Indeed, it would stimulate the economy and contribute to a prosperous future for our country’s youth.  If, on the other hand, China is given free reign, there is a risk of irresponsible food shortages.  As former assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs Wallace Gregson pointed out, “China stands harshly criticized in the UN Permanent Court of Arbitration judgment for ‘permanent and irreparable harm to the coral reef ecosystem.’”

Third, should China seize Panatag Shoal, freedom of navigation and overflight would be compromised.  Indeed, one third of world shipping (valued at over $5 trillion) passes through this route annually.  Hence, China has militarized seven reefs with runways, surface navy ship and submarine posts, hangars, radars, and surface-to-air missiles.  “The fear,” states Asia-Pacific security expert William Choong, “is that China will start dredging, followed by militarization, thus creating a strategic triangle connecting Woody Island, the Spratlys chain and Scarborough Shoal that would dominate most of the South China Sea.”  In order to prevent this, RP can and must assert its sovereignty.

Fourth, should RP decide to publicly acknowledge and enforce the PCA’s ruling, it would project fearless and determined leadership.  Not only would ASEAN consider RP an economic partner, it would be respected for defending its sovereignty, vis-a-vis an imperialistic juggernaut.  Indeed, it would be a successful model for Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, and Taiwan to emulate, since those ASEAN members also have maritime disputes with China.  Incidentally, RP happens to be one of ASEAN’s founders and is the first country to defend its sovereign territory against China via the PCA (and won), which puts it in a historically unique position.  Unfortunately, Duterte squandered a perfectly good opportunity to invoke the favorable PCA ruling at the ASEAN summit in which he himself presided as its chairman.

Perhaps you may understand and concur with my factually based points.  However, skeptics may reiterate Chinese Pres. Xi Jinping’s war threat and Duterte’s rationale that RP cannot win a war against China, due to its inadequate military capability.  In that case, I must defer to the authority of Supreme Court Justice Antonio Carpio, some of whose practical advice I conveyed in my letter to Duterte on May 2017:

  • The Philippines should “bring China’s threat of war to another UNCLOS arbitral tribunal, to secure an order directing China to comply with the ruling of the UNCLOS arbitral tribunal that declared the Reed Bank part of Philippine EEZ.”  He added that the “Philippines can also ask for damages for every day of delay that the Philippines is prevented by China from exploiting Philippine EEZ.”


  • The Philippines should persuade the U.S. to declare Panatag Shoal as part of Philippine territory, which would protect it under the 1951 Philippine-U.S. Mutual Defense Treaty.  Such action would add clarity for legal ramifications, since the shoal was known to be under Philippine jurisdiction as early as the American colonial period and even under Spanish rule.

This map was composed in 1734 showing Panatag Shoal within Philippine jurisdiction under Spanish rule. It is highlighted as “Panacot.”

  • The Philippines should send the Philippine Navy to patrol Panatag Shoal.  Should China stage an attack on any Philippine navy vessels, the Philippines can invoke the Mutual Defense Treaty, since it covers armed attacks on such vessels, pursuant to Article IV.  Of course, that would prompt the U.S. Navy to intervene.


  • The Philippines should resume joint naval patrols with the U.S. in the West Philippine Sea in order to project military might, which could deter China from continuing its island-building activity on Panatag Shoal.

In spite of such recourse against China’s war threat, some contend that China would renege on its commitment to financing a $180 billion infrastructure program in RP (including two railways, a hydroelectric dam, and an irrigation system).  It must be noted that its impact is not confined to transportation exclusively.  Indeed, it adversely affects commerce, the rate of employment, and the price and quality of goods and services.

However, this is a maritime dispute which need not alter trade or financial relations.  “I would take the approach of Vietnam as the model,” stated Carpio, “because Vietnam is very strong in resisting China’s encroachment but they continue to have very strong trade relations with China.”  Former national security advisor Roilo Golez even raises a 2014 incident in which Vietnam asserted its maritime sovereignty against China, leading to battle.  Ultimately, “after two months of that kind of encounter, watched by the entire world, China backed out.  That is something that we can study, how they do it.

Even if China’s financial commitment is fully dependent on RP’s forfeiture of Panatag Shoal, China does not possess a monopoly on capital.  Alternative financing could be secured from Japan, South Korea, Australia, Sweden, EU, UK, or the U.S.  Otherwise, some of the funding can come from tax reform or liquidation of confiscated assets of prosecuted drug lords.  In the U.S., Sen. Ted Cruz proposes the Ensuring Lawful Collection of Hidden Assets to Provide Order (EL CHAPO) Act which would allocate seized assets of drug dealers (like “El Chapo”) towards funding President Donald Trump’s border “wall.”

Furthermore, the significance of Panatag Shoal should not be underestimated, nor should our country’s capability of defending it against China, in spite of President Xi Jinping’s war threat.  In fact, defending the shoal would display our country’s resolve to effectively enforce its constitutional mandate and would serve as a model for other ASEAN maritime claimants to follow.  Additionally, the shoal’s bounty can provide food and jobs for citizens and be a reserve for our country’s energy needs—now and for our youth’s future.

Finally, should the aforementioned reasons be insufficient, ponder this.  Last month marked the 119th anniversary of our independence from Spain on June 12, 1898.  Today is our 61st anniversary of independence from the U.S. on July 4, 1946 and this year, the 75th anniversary of the Bataan Death March in 1942.  Indeed, they are all appropriate occasions in which to contemplate the sacrifices of our soldiers.  After all, did they not shed their own blood for the entire Philippines, including Panatag Shoal?  Ergo, is it not incumbent on us to cherish and protect what they fought for, so that their deaths shall not have been be in vain?  Surely, my friends and countrymen, for this reason alone, I submit we Filipinos should give a damn about Panatag Shoal and implore, nay, demand that the President defend it!

The Bataan Death March was a 65-mile trek into which over 76,000 Filipinos and Americans were coerced by Japanese captors during World War II in 1942.  Many died of starvation, sickness, and bayoneting by the Japanese.  Their death in serving and defending the Philippines gives them the highest honor.


From Freedom Wall:


 From Asian Alliance Against RED CHINA :

Lawrence Mark Pinoys do care about Panatag…. Unless youre a dutertard… 😂

LikeShow more reactions  ReplyJuly 4 at 5:32pm  Remove 

 Ronald David haha
LikeShow more reactions ReplyJuly 4 at 7:35pm Remove
Jennifer Bichara I did not know you posted this already
LikeShow more reactions Reply1July 4 at 5:35pm Remove
Jennifer Bichara Anyway, yes this is our soveignty
LikeShow more reactions  Reply1July 4 at 5:39pm Remove
Ave Rex Andrada Wow! Excellent article about the disputed Panatag/Scarborough shoal.
LikeShow more reactions ReplyJuly 4 at 6:54pm Remove
Marcial Bonifacio Clearly, Duterte does not value Panatag Shoal, Jennifer. Do you think his supporters do?
LikeShow more reactions ReplyJuly 4 at 8:21pm Remove
Jennifer Bichara They don’t see the value. They are utterly clueless about the consequences of his policies to the future of our country
Like ReplyJuly 4 at 8:26pm Remove 
Lawrence Mark do his supporters not value Panatag?.. u know whatever duterte says.. like that china is our friend crap.. ofcourse they will absolutely agree… like mindless zombies 😂
Marcial Bonifacio I appreciate the positive feedback, Ave.
LikeShow more reactions ReplyJuly 4 at 8:24pm Remove 
Ave Rex Andrada I think Duterte will give the Shoals to China in exchange for the projects that we may not need and for the commissions that he’s going to gain. Hopefully, it won’t be too late for the next administration to reclaim what ever is left of our EEZ… It would be pointless to expect as of now, anything from the Duterte administration.
Like ReplyJuly 4 at 8:58pm Remove 
Marcial Bonifacio Well that’s the trouble with Duterte’s short-sighted, provincial perspective, impulsiveness, and anti-American attitude.
Ave Rex Andrada Another alternative is to take the old navy ship, ready to be decommissioned to the Panatag shoal, and anchor or aground it, (ala, BRP Sierra Madre) somewhere near the mouth of the shoal. It would become the new permanent base of marines and Filipino fisherman. 
Like Reply1July 5 at 1:38pm Remove
Marcial Bonifacio Isn’t Sierra Madre currently stationed in the Spratly Islands, Ave
Like ReplyJuly 9 at 8:19pm Remove 
Ave Rex Andrada right sir… the old warship was purposely aground in the Ayungin Shoal… 
LikeReplyJuly 10 at 6:08am
Roger Pepito Of korz! we Pinoys shud & must, its well within our EEZ & only about 200kms from Luzon..
LikeShow more reactions ReplyJuly 5 at 9:58pm


From Opinyong Tunay:

Eddie Macasinag HO HO HO HO, bakit pala ano? Doon kaya Mr Duterte ka mag declare ng Martial Law,
Marcial Bonifacio Are you suggesting I tell Duterte to engage in war with China, Eddie?
Eddie Macasinag Sira ba ulo mo Marcial BonifacioMatuturoan ko ba yan c Duterte ?
Marcial Bonifacio Dinaramdam ko, Eddie. Marahil meron misunderstanding. I was just trying to clarify your point.
From For the Love of the Philippines:
Kenneth Villar Who cares? Duterte and his Dutertards doesn’t even care at all! 😜😜😂😂😂
Kenneth Villar Who gives a damn! Even Duterte doesn’t gives a shit!
Marcial Bonifacio If Duterte respects the Constitution, then he should give a damn because defending our sovereign territory is his constitutional mandate.
Roy Samontina char!nagsalita ang mga experto!😆😆😆😆
From Get Real Philippines:
Al Giorgio Sy Why just now? because US mongrels aka liberal party said so? if they really did care about the place, they would have set infrastructure there way before china did. pinoys need to suck up their pride and whining when they get outmaneuvered because of their incompetency.
From Balitang Global o Local:
Jeffrey Claros's Profile Photo, Image may contain: one or more people, people sitting, table and indoorJeffrey Claros . Too late to fight it if the UN officials and counsel has no teeth for the action in arbitruary case which won before duterte’s presidency.
Marcial Bonifacio Duterte is the one who needed teeth. He simply could have raised this issue with American President Donald Trump. Surely, he would have given full support, Jeffrey.
From Gising na Pilipinas :

An Open Letter to Pres. Duterte on Maute Terrorists & China’s War Threat

May 29, 2017

Dear President Rodrigo Roa Duterte:

I am writing you with the utmost respect and as a concerned citizen of the Philippines.  Like you, Mr. President, I only seek to serve the interests of our countrymen as well as protect the sovereignty of our country pursuant to the Constitution.  Therefore, I appeal that you keep an open mind and take no offense to my grievances and unsolicited recommendations.

Mr. President, many Marawi City residents have had their lives drastically disrupted and have been displaced as they have evacuated their homes, due to your declaration of martial law in Mindanao. Meanwhile, some foreign investors are losing confidence in the economy and the stability of the Philippine government as a result.  This may deter other potential investors and cost our country many current and potential jobs.  In fact, Philippine Airlines has already offered refunds to travelers fearful of flying to Mindanao.

For that reason, it is in the best interest of the Philippines to swiftly quell the terrorist threat, restore the rule of law, and draw an end to this period of martial law as soon as possible.  That is precisely why I suggest you request Pres. Donald Trump increase American troop presence in Mindanao.  Such a move would allow the police and military to continue fighting Islamic terrorists without compromising their focus on other priorities, such as the NPA (who have already announced they would utilize the current crisis to their advantage).  Since both the Philippines and the U.S. share a similar problem of having porous borders, thus enabling foreign Islamic terrorists to enter both countries (some of the killed Maute terrorists were from Indonesia and Malaysia), perhaps you can collaborate to find solutions.

Indeed, the U.S. would relentlessly curtail the escalation of Islamic terrorism.  In conformity with your desire to be “harsh,” Pres. Trump is willing to use practical, effective methods to counter the insurgents, such as enhanced interrogation techniques.  He is also willing to adopt Gen. Pershing’s method of using bullets dipped in pig’s blood, which quickly ended the war between the Americans and Moros during the early 20th century.

In light of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s threat on your desire for the Philippines to extract natural resources from the disputed West Philippine Sea, that “if you force the issue, we will go to war,” I must invoke the authority of Supreme Court Justice Antonio Carpio.  He states that “the threat of China to go to war against the Philippines if the Philippines extracts oil and gas in the Reed Bank, or in any area within Philippine EEZ in the West Philippine Sea, is a gross violation of the United Nations Charter, UNCLOS, and the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia to which China and the Philippines are parties.”

That is why, Mr. President, I implore you to discuss this issue with Pres. Trump.  After all, the U.S. also has a strategic interest in maritime security and maintaining freedom of navigation along the West Philippine Sea, which is one of the reasons Pres. Trump seeks to scale up the American navy.

Mr. President, it is indisputable that America’s military is the most powerful in the world, and wherein the U.S. refrained from full scale war, it has maintained a fairly stabilizing counter balance against hegemons like Russia and China.  In fact, just a few days ago, a U.S. warship sailed within 12 nautical miles of Mischief Reef unimpeded by China—a deliberate attempt to demonstrate that “Mischief Reef is not entitled to its own territorial sea regardless of whether an artificial island has been built on top of it.”  Indeed, according to Justice Carpio, “the Philippines must strengthen its alliance with the United States, the only country with whom the Philippines has a mutual defense treaty.”  Even the astute patriot whom you called “President Gordon” concurs on utilizing the presence of American troops in order to develop a “strong and credible defense capability.”

However, as we await the fortification of that alliance, Justice Carpio advises that the Philippines “bring China’s threat of war to another UNCLOS arbitral tribunal, to secure an order directing China to comply with the ruling of the UNCLOS arbitral tribunal that declared the Reed Bank part of Philippine EEZ.”  He added that the “Philippines can also ask for damages for every day of delay that the Philippines is prevented by China from exploiting Philippine EEZ.”

In following Justice Carpio’s lead, I also recommend that you persuade the U.S. to declare Panatag Shoal (universally known as Scarborough Shoal) as part of Philippine territory, which would protect it under the Philippine-U.S. Mutual Defense Treaty.  Such action would add clarity for legal ramifications, since the shoal was known to be under Philippine jurisdiction as early as the American colonial period.  The Japanese did precisely that with their Senkaku islands , which the U.S. declared as part of Japan’s territory for purposes of the U.S.-Japan Mutual Defense Treaty.

Meanwhile, Mr. President, you can send the Philippine Navy to patrol Panatag Shoal.  Should China stage an attack on any of our vessels, you can invoke the Mutual Defense Treaty, since it covers armed attacks on such vessels.  Of course, that would prompt the U.S. Navy to intervene.

I also recommend, Mr. President, that you express to Pres. Trump your gratitude for America’s contributions to our country’s welfare, including being an old, reliable ally whose troops fought alongside our troops against the Japanese invaders during World War II, providing foreign aid (in the form of funding, disaster relief supplies and manpower, and military assets and training), and U.S. legislation that currently supplements the income of our World War II veterans (in addition to their compensation by our own government).

The Oldest Philippine Alliance

Mr. President, Gen. Douglas MacArthur is one of Pres. Trump’s favorite commanders.  That is why I also urge you to give him a tour of the Leyte Landing Memorial Park, which is adorned by the American icon’s statue next to Pres. Sergio Osmena’s.  Perhaps such a setting would be appropriate to even hold a press conference wherein you can announce the fortification of Philippine-U.S. relations.

MacArthur Landing Memorial Park

I recommend the announcement be made on June 12, which is shortly upcoming and a historical date.  Indeed, it is the day Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo declared our country’s independence from Spain in 1898, for which a war by both Americans and Filipinos was fought.  Such a chosen time for the announcement would certainly send a chilling message to imperial China on their limits vis-á-vis a powerful, ironclad ally.

In conclusion, Mr. President, I welcome you forging new alliances with other countries.  However, new and dubious allies are no substitute for a single, loyal ally, especially since that ally according to Justice Carpio, is the “only one power on earth that can stop the Chinese and that’s the U.S.”  With that said, America is our greatest ally and an invaluable asset in combating Islamic terrorism and keeping China restrained.  Moreover, the world will respect us, and our enemies will fear us.  Thus, it would serve our country’s best interest to take full advantage of this opportunity.

Mr. President, I appreciate your service to our country and to our countrymen and look forward to the day when peace and order will be restored, federalism will take effect, our economy will grow at record levels, and our country will reach first world status.  May you have a successful presidency.

Mabuhay ang Pilipinas!

Marcial Bonifacio

Facebook Comments :

Evangeline Mejia's Profile Photo, Image may contain: 1 person, smilingEvangeline Mejia I definitely agree with this Marcial, this is better than criticizing duterte
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Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Nagagalak akong malaman iyan, kaibigan ko. I must admit I was  pretty restrained dahil sa directly addressing Duterte. 🙂   Marahil his surrogates may  read it and bring it to his attention.
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Marlene Damolo Howe's Profile Photo, Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, closeup Marlene Damolo Howe I agree with Pres. Duterte’s declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao in order to bring back law and order for the safety of the residents. The president has been fighting enemies from all fronts, both foreign and domestic. So Martial Law is sometimes necessary. Your suggestions are sensible and doable. But I can also understand where Pres. Duterte is coming from as far as working diplomatically with China and Russia, the two other superpowers adversarial to the United Sates. It doesn’t mean that he abandons the country’s alliance with the U.S., but only to explore diplomatic relationships with the other two since the Philippines is in a precarious situation and having very little resources for defense. The U.S. has a vested interests in the Philippines geographical location to keep navigation passage free in the West Philippine Sea or South China Sea, and China’s interest in the Philippines is for its agressive “expansionism” agenda. China claims that ALL of South China Seas is hers, regardless of the UNCLOS provision of 200 nautical miles EEZ.

So what does a Philippine president has to do? Pres. Duterte is a smart strategist. He has a history of outsmarting his detractors being street smart and pragmatic. After previous American president (Barack Obama) tried to undermine his presidency, Pres. Duterte moved to seek “diplomatic” alliance elsewhere. Hence, the two other superpowers, Russia and China. It puts America on notice! But Pres. Trump is NOT Barack Obama. He is not an ideologue but a PRAGMATIST that only wants to do what’s best for America. And that means, WORKING WITH ALLIES and gain their trust. Under Barack Obama, OUR ALLIES NO LONGER TRUSTED US AND OUR ENEMIES DIDN’T FEAR US. Presidents Trump and Duterte have the same goal for their respective countries, to make it a better place where people are free to live their lives as they see fit and in peace. They had a good rapport when they talked while the opposite is true with Barack Obama.

So I hope that President Duterte will get your message and take your suggestions in consideration. We all want peace and better Philippines. So I hope that the self-serving obstructionists and disruptors will cease in their undermining the Duterte presidency and instead, help the president succeed in his efforts to combat the BAD ELEMENTS befalling our country; corruption, war on drugs and terrorism.

Like Show more reactions · Reply · 3 · May 30 at 11:00pm Remove

LenDante Clarino LenDante Clarino Hey Marlene…long time… looks like your age is just like that of pretty Adaline. What’s the secret? Btw, i agree that u agree with #PDu30 here. ????
LikeShow more reactions · Reply · 1  · May 31 at 12:05am Remove

Marlene Damolo HoweMarlene Damolo Howe

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Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Magandang punto, kaibigang Marlene! Notwithstanding your     points that Duterte is a smart strategist, I concur with everything else. Naisip ko impulsive at short-sighted si Duterte dahil he forged ties with Russia and China before consulting  with Trump or Clinton tungkol sa paksang Panatag Shoal and their economic policy. Even before the U.S. presidential election was over in November of 2016, he could have ascertained both candidate’s proposals. If Obama were serving longer, then I might have some sympathy for Duterte’s decision. Gayunman, even then, it seems that Duterte may have been bent on forging new alliances just to spite the U.S. I have pointed out his anti- American inclination sa huling paliwanag ko titled “Digong is no Dick”:

Although Duterte has given mixed signals about his position on America and so-called “independent foreign policy” with other countries, his numerous rants and actions indicate he is, indeed, anti-American. For example, Duterte prompted the Supreme Court to deliberate on the constitutionality of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA), in spite of its benefit to RP. He said that 2016 would be the last year the Philippines would participate in joint military patrols and exercises with the U.S., although he recently requested China’s assistance in sea patrolling as a pre-emptive measure against piracy. Duterte has constantly condemned the U.S. for the atrocities of the Bud Dajo Massacre in 1906, prompting former Pres. Fidel Ramos to characterize such anti-colonial thinking as  “20th-century thinking” from which we must detach ourselves.Furthermore, Duterte has  shifted RP’s arms supply source from the U.S. to Russia and China, in spite of what political  scientist Richard Heydarian addresses as “problems with configuration” in which it could take “years for the Philippines’ army to reorient itself with new technology.           ”…/

Gayunpaman, sana Duterte will heed Carpio’s advice. Gayunman in so doing, he will have to strain ties with China to some extent, but he will regain some credibility for finally defending Panatag Shoal.

Digong is no Dick . . . Dick Gordon, that is
Updated 3/26/2017 By Marcial Bonifacio My…

LikeShow more reactions · Reply · June 3 at 2:03pm  Remove

Jocel MendozaJocel Mendoza I am one with the President. If the people who actually live in Mindanao support the declaration of Martial Law, why complain when we are not the one caught in war? Peace talks didn’t work and the enemies here are terrorists, we cannot talk sense to these people. Those who are against ML fear of power getting abused, but that is why the 1987 Constitution imposes limits to prevent it from happening. Martial Law then is different from Martial Law now.

Turning to Russia and China I think is the President’s way of bringing balance to Asia and neutralizing the tension in the region. We are not in the best position to declare war. Why would we fight China when even the US won’t. The most viable solution in the sea conflict – joint exploration.
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Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Kaibigang Jocel, sang-ayon ako sa punto mo ng martial law—that the 1987 Constitution has safeguards which differentiate it from the previous one. Gayunman, Duterte did not make such a distinction. Sa kabilang banda, sabi niya, “Martial law is martial law. So to my countrymen, you have experienced martial law. Ito, it would not be any different from what the President Marcos did. I’d be harsh.” Fortunately,  Duterte’s surrogates have attempted to walk such statements back and make the distinctions which you made. Aside from using martial law for quelling Islamic terrorism, he should do so to neutralize the NPA as well, since peace talks with them have also failed.

Tungkol sa paksang bagong alliances, Duterte is not helpless in defending Panatag Shoal.  The Mutual Defense Treaty obligates the U.S. to engage in war should RP’s navy vessels get attacked by China. SC Justice Antonio Carpio has even stressed that sa sulat ko.  Gayunpaman, Duterte would set a good example for the other ASEAN members with similar disputes dahil RP’s sovereignty is legal sa pamamagitan ng ruling ng Permanent Arbitration Court.

LikeShow more reactions · Reply · June 3 at 2:46pm 

Image may contain: dog, outdoor and natureSeni Batong Etcudo · University of Baguio, Baguio City, Philippines

I just hope that president Duterte will accept the advice as written in this message. We don’t want to cut off our friendship with the USA.
LikeReply1May 30, 2017 6:09am
Marcial Bonifacio have tweeted this letter to Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana, Foreign Affairs Sec. Alan Cayetano, the DOJ,the Philippine Coast Guard, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, Sen. Richard Gordon, and even Mocha Uson. Hopefully, Ines, they all will understand the significance of America’s alliance and will try to persuade the President.
LikeReplyJun 1, 2017 7:47pmEdited 
USA is our true ally – from World War II to present. There are thousands of Fil-Ams in the US Armed forces- from the lower ranks to the highest ranks. Thousands of Fil-Am families in US. How many Filipinos in PLA? Probably none. Free speech in USA allows Fil-Ams to lobby and represent the Philippines in economic, political and social issues. If only Filipinos think like the Japanese, Japan was nuked twice, was an enemy of both US and CHINA, but the WISE Japanese chose USA. USA will help protect RP than Red CHINA. Red China is making RP their FRONTLINE BATTLEGROUND. We will be like Tibet and N. Korea. Red CHina is bringing the war to the Philippines WHETHER FILIPINOS will fight or not fight. Filipinos might as well fight with a strong ally and closer ally – USA. Filipinos have NO VOICE in RED CHINA!
LikeReply1May 31, 2017 11:24amEdited
Marcial BonifacioExcellent points, Thor! What’s ironic is that, as I pointed out in my last commentary, Duterte “has defied all conventional logic by shifting loyalty from an old, reliable ally—sharing similar ideals and aspects of civil liberties, human rights, democracy, and military culture— to a hegemonic, dubious foe—sharing no such ideals or cultural facets.”
It seems that the only way out of this situation is either for Duterte to betray China and rejoin America, or for Duterte’s successor to reverse course.
LikeReply1Jun 1, 2017 6:33pm

Digong is no Dick . . . Dick Gordon, that is

Updated 3/26/2017

By Marcial Bonifacio

My friends and countrymen, ever since Rodrigo Duterte entered the presidential race in 2016, some of his most fervent supporters, including some of my esteemed colleagues, have held him with such high regard tantamount even to their high regard for Sen. Richard Gordon.  In fact, many voted for both public servants believing they would be an ideal tandem, one for president and the other for senator.  Many of our citizens who voted for Duterte in the 2016 presidential election are the same ones who voted for Gordon in his 2010 presidential race.

Perhaps such electoral behavior is due to the perception that they both are “no-nonsense,” maverick leaders, who “think outside the box.”  Hence, it is indubitable that they would govern similarly, if not identically.  However, such a conclusion has little basis in fact, considering their views, policies, and overall knowledge differ drastically.  Please allow me to illustrate.

Anti-Drug Policy

On the issue of the drug epidemic, Duterte seems content in executing his plans by literally executing people—drug lords and addicts—just as he did as mayor of Davao City.  He has even encouraged civilians to follow his lead, whereby he would give them a medal or cash in return.  “If you know of any addict,” stated Duterte, “go ahead and kill them yourself as getting their parents to do it would be too painful.”  Duterte has reiterated to the PNP (Philippine National Police) that he would take the fall for any policeman prosecuted for “doing his duty,” even to the point of incarceration.


Gordon, on the other hand, has a comprehensive approach to the drug problem.  For instance, since China has failed to effectively enforce its anti-drug smuggling laws, he suggests they be condemned.  “We should shame China,” advises Gordon, “They’re not only taking our land.  They’re also bringing in drugs to our country.”  He urges the Foreign Affairs Department to “launch a strong protest” against the imperial power.

Additionally, Gordon proposes that schools provide highly trained guidance counselors and facilitate active Parents-Teachers Associations in order to detect and prevent potential drug addicts.  He supports the establishment of village watch groups that would coordinate with the police and has been proven to be effective in Olongapo City under his mayorship.  Gordon also proposes establishing police courts for handling drug-related crime and extrajudicial killing cases and body cameras for the police to promote transparency.

Gordon-Drug solution

Upon the event of extrajudicial killings, he proposes the immediate suspension or dismissal of all policemen involved, just as he initiated as mayor.  I might add that as an infrastructure project and extra border security, the Philippines can emulate American Pres. Donald Trump’s proposal of erecting a “wall” for which China will pay, but I digress.  🙂

American Foreign Policy

Although Duterte has given mixed signals about his position on America and so-called “independent foreign policy” with other countries, his numerous rants and actions indicate he is, indeed, anti-American.  For example, Duterte prompted the Supreme Court to deliberate on the constitutionality of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA), in spite of its benefit to RP.  He said that 2016 would be the last year the Philippines would participate in joint military patrols and exercises with the U.S., although he recently requested China’s assistance in sea patrolling as a pre-emptive measure against piracy.  Duterte has constantly condemned the U.S. for the atrocities of the Bud Dajo Massacre in 1906, prompting former Pres. Fidel Ramos to characterize such anti-colonial thinking as “20th-century thinking” from which we must detach ourselves.

Furthermore, Duterte has shifted RP’s arms supply source from the U.S. to Russia and China, in spite of what political scientist Richard Heydarian addresses as “problems with configuration” in which it could take “years for the Philippines’ army to reorient itself with new technology.”

He did all this in spite of the 70-year alliance in which the Americans fought alongside our countrymen against the Japanese imperialists during World War II, invested billions of dollars in private capital (much of it accounting for a booming BPO industry), defended RP’s right to use arbitration for maritime disputes in the West Philippine Sea, and has provided foreign aid in the form of disaster relief goods and services and military equipment and training against Islamic terrorists.

I have yet to mention the billions of dollars of remittances from American OFWs (which comprise approximately 43% of total remittances).   Does this sound like Duterte merely seeks an independent foreign policy, or does this manifest his entrenched animosity towards the U.S.?


Gordon, on the other hand, has consistently supported the U.S. as early as his Olongapo mayorship.  He vehemently defended the U.S. Bases Treaty in 1991 as well as EDCA.  In an interview during his 2013 senatorial run, when asked if he supported EDCA, he responded, “EDCA, yeah.  Our air force is all air and no force.”  More recently, Gordon pointed out that “Japan and South Korea have used the US military bases there as their defense umbrella, while they funneled resources to rebuild their ravaged economy to build up their society to first world status” and that RP “must do the same.”


Panatag Shoal

On the issue of Panatag Shoal, a Pulse Asia survey (taken Dec. 6-11, 2016) shows that 84% of its participants want the government to uphold the ruling of the Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA), favoring RP’s claim and invalidating China’s nine-dash line as contrary to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.  Perhaps that is why many cheered at Duterte’s proclamation that he would jet ski all the way to the disputed territory on which he would plant the Philippine flag.  However, since he has forged an alliance with imperial China, he has refrained from discussing the matter with them.  Instead they discussed trade deals, financial aid, and arms supplies.


Though Philippine fishermen are now able to return due to China’s permission—not its acknowledgement of the PCA ruling, which Rep. Tomasito Villarin says will “subject us to international ridicule”—RP appears to be China’s lapdog.  How ironic considering Duterte, in condemnation of America, clearly stated, “I am not a tuta (lapdog) of any country!”  Even more perplexing is that about 55% of our countrymen have “little trust” in China, according to an SWS poll.  Indeed, Duterte has not only contradicted himself and thwarted the will of the people, he has defied all conventional logic by shifting loyalty from an old, reliable ally—sharing similar ideals and aspects of civil liberties, human rights, democracy, and military culture— to a hegemonic, dubious foe—sharing no such ideals or cultural facets.

The U.S. has already hinted that it will make preparations to block China, if it continues militarizing Panatag Shoal.  However, Duterte still refuses to collaborate in defending RP’s legal claim.  Gordon called such neglect of the PCA’s ruling “dangerous because anytime you have a claim, you must assert it,” and “if China steps on Scarborough Shoals, that is a red line and we’ll have to fight.”  He also agrees with Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio that, “if Duterte concedes sovereignty, it is a culpable violation of the Constitution, a ground for impeachment.”

With such a serious charge pending, what could be the rationale for such illogical behavior?  Is Duterte simply focused on the economic bounty RP will derive from China in exchange for Panatag Shoal?  Perhaps I can appropriately adapt Mark 8:36 as “For what shall it profit a nation to gain the whole spectrum of prosperity (in banana exportation, increased tourism, financial aid for infrastructure, and foreign direct investments) but lose its own sovereignty?”

China Philippines

Death Penalty

On the death penalty, Duterte seeks to reimpose it.  Gordon opposes it on the grounds that it violates international conventions to which RP has agreed and the risk of mistaken identity.  In fact, the Free Legal Assistance Group conducted a research study in 2004, which revealed that “71 percent of death sentences handed down by trial courts were wrongfully imposed.”  The same study also showed that “70 percent of the 1,021 inmates on death row earned less than P10,000,” essentially indicating the death penalty to be anti-poor.

Political Economy

On the economy, Duterte styles himself a “socialist” and the “first left president of the Philippines.”  As I pointed out in my commentary titled “My Concerns about a Duterte Presidency,” Duterte has been sympathetic to the communists and has offered them Cabinet positions in his administration.  While it is uncertain whether or not he himself is a communist—especially since he recently rebranded the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) as a “terrorist group” and declared an “all out war” against them after breaking a ceasefire—he has not replaced his appointees, three of whom are from the National Democratic Front (NDF) and one (Leonicio Evasco Jr) of whom is from the New People’s Army (NPA) and currently supervises 18 Cabinet agencies.

There are various theories from renowned commentators on the matter, and I am open to any and all of them without a firm conviction as of yet.  For example, many people think that Duterte has appointed communists to his Cabinet in an effort to make peace after 50 years of enmity.  Perhaps, but following that logic, should he not also include members of the Abu Sayyaf, ISIS, and Maute terrorist groups, since they are equal adversaries of the state?

Some think that since the founding chairman of the CPP, Jose Sison, was Duterte’s close friend and political science professor at the Lyceum of the Philippines, they are simpatico in their vision of a communist RP.  Others, like political columnist Francisco Tatad, speculate a grand scheme is at play in which Evasco is behind the peace talks of the CPP, NPA, and NDF for the “eventual communization of the Philippine government.”

However, some even believe that the current war on the NPA establishes a predicate for Duterte to declare martial law, since the communist movement can be construed as a rebellion, especially since they recently broke the ceasefire by killing some AFP members.  That may explain why he has visited various military camps throughout RP in order to garner support for such a drastic measure.


In spite of Duterte’s dubious intentions and association with communists, Gordon’s economic platform is pro-growth and pro-free trade.  His legislation proposals include lowering taxes, increasing savings and investments, and enabling entrepreneurs to be more competitive with big corporations for government contracts.  Gordon has frequently condemned government handouts as merely a Band-Aid solution to a deeper problem, which he says will only perpetuate “the attitude of mendicancy among our people” as has been the case “over the last four centuries or so.”


 In speech, Duterte is impulsively forthright, vulgar, and excessively foul-mouthed.  Indeed, such ostensibly undiplomatic verbiage has had national and international repercussions that have been adverse and the subject of universal media scrutiny.  Although a few of his spokesmen have publicly dismissed Duterte’s crude remarks as mere hyperbole or public misperception, “perception can be more damaging than reality” as Gordon pointed out.

On Duterte’s offensive remarks, Gordon insists “we have to protect the country from bad statements, and the President has the duty to be a statesman.”  As for his most frequently used expletive, Gordon suggests Duterte “not be heard saying all bad words” lest RP’s new tourism slogan be “Welcome to the PI” or “Wow PI.”  Even Donald Trump has displayed more oratorical discipline, since his election as president to the astonishment of many, including myself.


In contrast to Duterte’s unrefined oratory, Gordon’s is forthright but professional, eloquent, and with scholarship—in a word, most presidential.  View the following speech in which he presents his perspective on reopening the senatorial probe into the alleged Davao Death Squad with new testimony from Senior Police Officer 3 Arthur Lascañas.  Observe his diplomacy in articulating his disagreement with some of his senatorial colleagues.  Was he effective in conveying his points without using expletives?

Public Service

 Although Duterte’s public service and patriotic achievements (as prosecutor and 22-year mayor) cannot be denied due credit, they were largely confined to Davao City and its residents.  However, as president, I must at least credit him for persuading more than 700,000 drug-related criminals to surrender themselves to the proper authorities.  However, it can be disputed that the drug epidemic is simply the symptom or consequence of the more profound problems of psychological instability, poverty, and corruption, and should thus not be considered such an impactful achievement for the country as a whole.

After all, a liberal measure of the number of drug users is calculated to be a mere 4.74%, which is below the global average of 5.2%.  Meanwhile, the Asian Development Bank rates the poverty level at a whopping 25%.  Should not the “war on poverty” be prioritized over the “war on drugs”?  Would it not be more laudable, if Duterte contributed more to job creation, expanding the tax base, and creating prosperity—which could decrease drug abuse—not to mention would have preserved the lives of the 7,000 killed suspects in the drug war?

Gordon’s public service is far more diverse and has profoundly impacted the entire country.  For example, he was a delegate to the 1971 Constitutional Convention, authored the Automated Elections Law as a senator, and has helped save the countless lives of natural disaster victims as a Red Cross volunteer for nearly 50 years.  Hence, while Duterte may have contributed to the safety and prosperity of Davao City, Gordon was instrumental in framing the supreme law of our country, modernizing and automating the electoral process in order to curb voter fraud, and helping create prosperity for the whole Philippines in the tourism industry.

By now, it should be ostensible that Duterte and Gordon would govern very differently because they are very different public servants with different views on different issues, some of which are in direct contradiction.  If the name, “Digong,” were partially covered in such a way that only the first two letters, “Di,” could be seen, it may be innocently misconstrued as “Dick.”  However, such an error could easily be prevented by simply viewing all the alphabetical letters as a whole, just as we should examine all our public servants in their totality before electing them into office.

In conclusion, friends and countrymen, I submit that Rodrigo Duterte may be the first Mindanaon president of the Philippines, a former prosecutor and 22-year Davao City mayor, whose voice mesmerizes his admirers and strikes fear into the hearts of drug lords.  He may even be a maverick with drastic policy proposals and changes, which contradict conventional norms and even tradition.  Perhaps Duterte has a genuinely pure heart, good intentions, and is very passionate about our country as well as our countrymen.  Indeed, Digong may be a hero to many people, but he is certainly no Dick . . . Dick Gordon, that is.


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Comments from the group: Asian Alliance against China.

Rohellio Zoryaga They are not the same in terms of foreign relation.
Like · Reply · March 7 at 9:42pm
Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio They are scarcely the same in domestic or foreign policy. As I pointed out sa paliwanag ko, they differ on key issues, halimbawa, the drug war, death penalty, American foreign policy, Panatag Shoal, etc.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 6:15pm

Ashz Ashzl's Profile Photo, Image may contain: one or more peopleAshz Ashzl Yes both of them are a sissy dick
Like· Reply · March 8 at 12:23am
Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio How is Gordon, Ashz?
Like· Reply · March 8 at 6:23pm · Edited

Ashz AshzlAshz Ashzl Just ch3ck ur balls and compare it to gordon you’ll get what i mean. ????
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:36pm · Edited

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Please give me facts, Ashz.
Like· Reply · March 10 at 3:42pm · Edited

Josephus RamosJosephus Ramos What’s the comparison for? i can only see the two side of the two china and the US…
Like· Reply · March 8 at 7:17pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio The comparison shows the difference between Gordon and Duterte in general and in their approach to China in particular. While the former would stand up to them, the latter has sacrificed our sovereignty to them, Josephus, which is an impeachable offense.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 8:58pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna Our people…deserve better leaders. May the Good Lord give us leaders that truly care for the welfare of the people, instead of their own..families, clans…and bank accounts. Tsk tsk tsk 🙁
Like· Reply · March 8 at 7:59pm · Edited

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio That leader would be Sen. Dick Gordon. He may very well be our next president.

Like· Reply · March 8 at 9:00pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna Perhaps, that remains to be seen.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 9:03pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna We will see …
Like· Reply · March 8 at 9:03pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Even if he doesn’t become president, what Gordon has done for the country until now far exceeds what Duterte has done or is likely to do before his term expires.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 9:08pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna Ok.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 9:09pm

Joe BaceroJoe Bacero Marcial Bonifacio really?
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:19pm

Joe BaceroJoe Bacero Look DICK Look – look at Durts –
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:25pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna Joe Bacero
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:28pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna Mas magaling naman si Gordon kaysa kay Digz Joe ..that’s TRUE
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:29pm

Joe BaceroJoe Bacero yes – its true…
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:30pm

Joe BaceroJoe Bacero no snatchers no pickpocketers in subic when he was a mayor…
Like ·  Reply · March 8 at 10:31pm

Joe BaceroJoe Bacero and most of all NO death squad
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:32pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna 🙂
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:32pm

Joe BaceroJoe Bacero ano tawag dun kung meron… SDS naman
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:32pm

Joe BaceroJoe Bacero if he run for president on 2022 – i will not vote for him…
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:33pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna Who??? Gordon? Why?
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:39pm

Joe BaceroJoe Bacero i mean if gordon run for president.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:40pm

Sandra Joson-AcunaSandra Joson-Acuna Ok Why not Joe?
Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:57pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio I’m also interested in knowing Joe Bacero‘s reason for not voting for Gordon after he just praised him.
Like· Reply · March 10 at 3:22am

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Nga pala, magandang punto tungkol sa Olongapo and Subic Bay having low crime rates without a death squad under Mayor Gordon.
Like· Reply · March 10 at 3:27am


Comments from the group:  WHAT THE FILIPINOS NEED TO KNOW – Politics, News & other Relevant Issues.

March 7

Alwyn BalingitAlwyn Balingit They are on the same page on many things, and they are both excellent administrators who can bring their experience of running a city onto running a country

Like· Reply · March 7 at 9:51pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Talaga, Alwyn? Name one policy in which they agree. I have pointed out several in which they are in direct opposition. Tungkol sa gobyerno ng ating bayan, alam mo ng mga accomplishments ni Gordon. Gayunman, Duterte’s only national impact has been in the drug war. Even then, as I pointed out sa paliwanag ko, that has little effect on poverty, unemployment, or development.

Also, the future of our country seems bleak when the President cannot even protect our sovereignty sa Panatag Shoal. Sa kabilang banda, he has sold it for China’s money. That was one of the key issues I pointed out, wherein Gordon and Duterte disagree.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 7:50pm · Edited

Alwyn BalingitAlwyn Balingit I cannot list and paste everything here, but you can scour the Richard Gordon FB Page, all posts that are supportive of Duterte. And yeah, while they have things that they agree on, there are also things they disagree about, for example, yung pag-away noon ni Duterte kay Obama.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 8:44pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Please post the link sa Gordon’s FB page here, para I can check it. Tungkol kay Obama, that is probably the one thing wherein I disagree with Gordon sa kasamaang-palad. Are you referring to Chicago, Alwyn?
Like· Reply · March 8 at 9:52pm

Alwyn BalingitAlwyn Balingit
Dick Gordon
Government Official · 600,634 Likes
Dick Gordon's photo.
Dick Gordon

  • Jeffry Dy
  • Pau Siochi

Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:10pm

Alwyn BalingitAlwyn Balingit Too many to paste here, click on their photos section na lang ang check the ones with paragraphs like the one below. Again, most of the time in favor of PRRD, and at times disagreeing.

· Reply · March 8 at 10:15pm · Edited

Alwyn BalingitAlwynBalingit
Image may contain: 1 person, text

Dick Gordon with Rodrigo Duterte 16th President and 28 others.

December 16, 2016 ·


To those who wish to bring the President down, a word of caution, just because you say it, it doesnt mean it’s the truth.

You need evidence. It must be proven. Proof is not spoken, it is shown.

To the President, I say once again, loose lips sink ships. Make your actions speak louder than your words.

Like· Reply · March 8 at 10:15pm
Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Salamat, kaibigan ko, para sa mga links. While Gordon may appear supportive of Duterte, meron mga ambiguities. Halimbawa, when Gordon says, “If we want our country to succeed, we need our president to succeed,” he is making a general statement that the president and the other branches of government need to work coherently. It is Gordon’s way of trying to unify the people behind Duterte in so far as everything he does is lawful and constitutional.
Like· Reply · March 11 at 2:51pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Gayunman, sa specific, major policies, I have listed several quotes from Gordon indicating clear opposition to Duterte. Halimbawa, sa China, Duterte coddles them, nguni’t sabi ni Gordon RP should fight them.

Sa Amerika, Duterte constantly reiterates the Bud Dajo Massacre, which happened more than a century ago, before Obama was born. That means anti-Amerika siya. Gordon has only blamed Obama specifically, but he has openly embraced America’s alliance, even since he was Olongapo mayor.Sa Panatag Shoal, Duterte appears disinterested. Gordon wants RP to assert its legal claim ayon sa ruling ng international tribunal. He even goes as far as stating that not asserting RP’s claim could be an impeachable offense.Anong palagay mo, kaibigang Alwyn?
Like· Reply · March 11 at 4:07pm · Edited

Alwyn BalingitAlwyn Balingit Yup, basically Gordon is supportive of Duterte while at the same time maintain his stand with the usual objective Gordon stance. It’s healthy.
Like· Reply · March 11 at 6:54pm


More Comments :

Emma MorganEmma Morgan I rather to see Gordon as a president, he is true to his job, never get involved with any corruption, killing etc. This is the person should lead the country not someone who’s been involved with massacre.
Like· Reply · March 7 at 11:57pm
Gilbert MenchuGilbert Menchu Its much better if Gordon is President.He knows better what our peoples need.They need descent job and money if we want our people lives a better life they need a better job.Other things changed automatically.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 6:45pm · Edited


Perci Lozano Piña's Profile Photo, Image may contain: 1 person, closeupPerci Lozano Piña No. Gordon is the only Dick that WE LOVE.

Like· Reply · March 7 at 6:49pm
Jeffry DyJeffry Dy Very long analysis and well yeah different styles,different leaderships and oh boy at times pro China which is something Both us and phl leaders need to talk bout since they support one another although i disagree w the vulgar rant there. Sometimes it has to and he understands the frustrations of everyone around us thristy for a real Change something no ordinary leader has done.So yeah great points and excellent view
Like· Reply · March 7 at 7:24pm · Edited

Jeffry DyJeffry Dy Also on the ejk part on digong its all pure exagerration and all bs when did the media ever find any figures on 7,000 plus when in our normal lives everybody does the crime everyday and that’s a fact.

My estimates on the so called ejk is massively lower than that and this whole sherade on him a dictator and all that is plain wooey.If hes ever like that would u think for once social media or all the modern things u need are still exist??Think bout that even hypocrites are ranting it out on digong too I call it smarks for all i care.

I can smell the party of digong resign right bout now hypocrites want him that.

Like· Reply · March 7 at 7:40pm · Edited

Dodong AbercaDodong Aberca He used his DICK wisely by the way.
Like· Reply · March 7 at 8:18pm

Doray Ramon InayinayDoray Ramon Inayinay Di nagpapagamit si Dick! Tatayo yan pG kailangan 😉

Like· · Reply ·  March 7 at 8:55pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Salamat, Jeffry. Actually, I did not plan for my commentary to be this long. However, as new developments occurred, I had to update it. Anyway, I do appreciate Duterte’s aggressiveness and political will, but I think he should direct them against China and the NPA. Those are the real threats to RP, since they undermine our sovereignty and ability to govern pursuant to democratic ideals.

Of course 7,000 killings is only an approximation of the total number of victims of the drug war. The conventional estimate of police killings is about half, while the other half is likely due to vigilantes and other drug-related criminals. However, don’t you think that if Gordon were president, that number would be drastically reduced?

Like· Reply · March 7 at 9:23pm

Jeffry DyJeffry DyOkay lang po iyan mqrcial as long as you have the say may kalayaan naman tayo diba?
Like· Reply · March 7 at 10:23pm

Hill de RobertsHill de RobertsThe real threat to the nation is the LP and its dangerous members from top to bottom
Like· Reply · March 8 at 12:45am · Edited

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Perhaps, Hill, but there is a political remedy to deal with LP. The violent nature of the NPA and imperialism of China can only be remedied by force, not appeasement as is Duterte’s way. Indeed, If he used the same fervor as he does with the drug lords, China would think twice before infringing on our sovereignty. Recall that even you started an FB group promoting the boycott of Chinese products kanina, hindi ba?
Like· Reply · March 8 at 2:27pm · Edited

Carlos Jalijali GuanlaoCarlos Jalijali Guanlao Si Dick kusa yang tumatayo kapag kailangan!
Like· Reply · March 7 at 11:38pm
Oscar SaddulOscar Saddul NEVER…. IDICK IS A DICK IS A DICK & NO ONE ELSE, I believe so !
Like· Reply · March 8 at 9:30am

Melchor SalongaMelchor Salonga Well he is a Dick but with cursing ????

Dick and Duterte are similar in the sense they have a no-nonsense approach in getting things done, abrasive and tell it like it is attitude and can back up their bravado (i.e. Davao, Subic).

Dick is just more articulate in the manner he answers IMO since he can get his message through without necessarily blurting out curse words.

Like· Reply · March 8 at 2:48pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio I definitely agree that both are forthright, abrasive, and perhaps, no-nonsense in their approach. However, their differences are not confined exclusively to their oratory, but extends to their policies as well. For example, they are in direct opposition on American foreign policy, death penalty, and Panatag Shoal, Melchor.
Like· Reply · March 8 at 9:22pm

Dodong AbercaDodong Aberca MY DICK IS GOOD TOO
Like· Reply · March 8 at 8:14pm

Sari Aya MalayaSari Aya Malaya Certainly, Digong is no Dick and will never be. Sen. Dick Gordon is Pro-Life, Pro-Peace and Pro-Constitution. Digong is the exact opposite. Kudos to the PR and marketing geniuses who made and repackaged him during the time when Davao was an experimental area of the left. They made him look and sound “cool” especially to the business sector and from then on he made history. But they should had known any better. They may had put Davao on the business map but on one end, created a Frankenstein called Duterte. Frankenstein in contemporary debates on bioethics provided lessons which are seemingly clear: don’t play God, don’t over-reach, don’t unleash uncontrollable forces, don’t treat humans as material, don’t act alone. Such a fitting metaphor for an empowered, unfeeling man who decides on the life and death of his so called “masters”, the ordinary citizenry over allegations of illegal drug use. He put too much attention to the war on drugs and criminality, but where are the big fishes? What about our war on poverty? Our security from external threats? We need real and tangible government policies that will help us in our day to day struggle for survival.
Like· Reply · March 15 at 3:02am · Edited

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Frankenstein, indeed? Hahaha! That’s the first time I’ve heard anyone refer to Duterte as such, Sari. However, using your analogy, I don’t think his supporters see him as a monster. On the contrary, they see him as ridding RP of monsters (drug lords and drug addicts), although there are mass casualties as well, which Duterte’s undiplomatic rhetoric masks.

I don’t think he expended much effort or money in his presidential campaign. Instead, I think he acted naturally, which is what caused much of what Gordon called “noise” and gained him so much media coverage. He basically capitalized on the people’s frustration with traditional politicians, spoke his mind unencumbered, and many of our kababayans took solace in him as a “different” type of public servant, much like Donald Trump in America.

I infer that Duterte’s assertiveness on the drug-related criminals, his unrefined oratory, and his perception as a non-traditional politician are what mesmerize his supporters, even to the point that they are so distracted from other issues of significance as you pointed out. Unfortunately, many of the people who voted for Gordon in the 2010 presidential election paradoxically voted for Duterte last year. I view that as our country transitioning from progress to regression.

Like· Reply · March 14 at 3:10pm · Edited

Sari Aya MalayaSari Aya MalayaHis supporters are bunch of hypocrites. They see the truth, know the truth but still choose to believe the lies his strategies have deeply embedded in their systems. Duterte is a masterful tactician and strategist. His Opening Strategy. Remember how everyone was in suspense until he delivered his coup de grace? His middlegame Strategy. How he uses his weakness as his strength, his cursing and the deliberate showcase of his rough edges. And his Endgame Strategy, the very popular “you can oust me if I abuse power”.

Two things though, first, our nation is teeming with patsies, he capitalizes on their vulnerabilities, thirst for change and ignorance. Second, our nation losts its moral ascendancy. He is destroying the moral fabric of this nation and making us rise against each other. He broadened the gap of division and misunderstanding among Filipinos than bridging it. Worse is, most Filipinos consented on it, in fact, applauded it.

They have not realized that this is all about “brand-is-crisis’ strategy, the political landscape are made to keep shifting, ever changing. The powers of the State apparatus are made to be trained at moving, unstable targets, for the President to be the first to call it a crisis, then he becomes a hero, instantly seen to be part of the solution itself. This strategy is traditionally effective in keeping leaders in power. Crisis branding is supply-driven rhetoric. Now, for instance, it’s focused on illegal drugs then illegal gambling – then his political imagination would be limitless.

They keep on saying they are the majority but the truth is that they are just loud. Noise is essential and is used for the purpose of deflecting attention to an imagined hot button issue while the proponent quietly works upon another.

Crisis branding can be an effective political campaign strategy because it draws power from frightening people, but it has no place in day-to-day governance. What we need today is to maintain respect, implement policies that ooze with common sense, and take a long-term orientation in regional stability and cooperation.

Like· Reply ·March 17 at 5:03pm · Edited

Marcial BonifacioMarcial BonifacioExcellent points, Sari! Another name for what you described is the “politics of fear.” I just watched Duterte speak at the First General Assembly of League of Municipalities. He had a 2-minute speech already prepared, but discarded it and decided to speak for more than an hour about killing drug lords again. He even displayed another list of drug-related criminals.

I noticed a few people in his audience were dozing off. Perhaps they were bored or intoxicated themselves in preparation for Duterte’s usual speech.

When he said he does not think of himself as a president, but as a mayor, I thought that is precisely his problem. He is using his limited, parochial perspective for a post that requires a broader, national perspective. For a city and a mayor, perhaps the drug epidemic was a necessary focal point, but the country as a whole has other, more urgent concerns as poverty, unemployment, and the specter of China’s intrusion on our sovereignty.

Like· Reply ·March 14 at 6:27pm

Doray Ramon InayinayDoray Ramon Inayinay Simple lang yan. Ang mga Hindi adik nakakatulog Na ng mahimbjng sa Gabi. Sorry Na lang sa mga kapitalistang di nakakapang gago ng ordinaryong pinoy.
Like· Reply · March 14 at 6:33pm
Evangeline MejiaEvangeline Mejia sa lahat ng analysis nyo kay duterte at sa problema ng kung ano anong salot na nangyayari sa bansang Pilipinas, mayroon bang pangulo o kung sino man sa taga panguna natin na nagbigay ng kalutasan ? WALA PA, at ngayon na merong pangulo na kahit papaano may ginagawa pra kahit papaano ay malutas o papunta sa kalutasan ay kung ano anong analogy o katawagan ang ibinabansag sa kanya, pati mga supporters nya ay kung ano anong masasamang tawag ang inila-label nyo sa kanila, magaling lang kayong mag-analysis at magsalita ng English pero wala din naman kayong ginagawa pra sa bansa, for all you know itong Sari na ito ay hindi naman Pilipino pero parang alam na alam ang kalagayan ng Pilipinas pero hindi naman, baka naman in your perspective lang Sari ang tingin mo sa lahat…baka ikaw ang hypocrite kasi ang galing mong magbigay ng pagsusuri sa iisang side, hay naku, panay na lang kayo analysis …ano kaya ang maitutulong nyo sa PILIPINAS?
Like· Reply · March 14 at 7:40pm · Edited
Sari Aya MalayaSari Aya Malaya Mawalang galang na po, Ginang Mejia, pinoy na pinoy po ako. Wala po akong ni isang patak na dugong banyaga. Tubong Batangas at Bulacan po ako. Nakapangibambansa man po ako ng ilang beses, di ko iwinaglit ni minsan ang pagka Pilipino ko. Magaling lang po talaga siguro akong magmasid at kumilatis ng kabalintunaan at kasinungalingan. Gising po ang diwa at mulat ang mga mata ko sa bawat hinaing, paglibak at pagkabigo ng ating mga kababayan. Araw araw po akong nakikipagsiksikan sa MRT, lumalanghap ng maitim na usok ng EDSA at nagpapakasaya sa isang tuhog ng kwek kwek sa paanan ng tulay ng Boni. Isa po akong buhay na saksi sa bawat pagbabagong nagaganap sa bayan natin. Isa po akong payak na manggagawa, na halos kalahati ng kita ko ay kinaltas para sa buwis. Aba, malaking halaga na rin po yun dahil labingwalong taong gulang pa lang ako nang maging kapakipakinabang na akong mamamayan. Lumalaban po ako nang parehas at hindi po ako nanlalamang ng kapwa. Hindi man po ako nabigyan ng pagkakataong maglingkod sa bayan gaya ni Duterte, ang maliliit na ambag kong tulong sa sambayanan ay malayo-layo na rin ang narating. Hangad ko lang pong gisingin ang diwa ng mga kababayan kong tila himbing pa sa uyayi ng mga mapagbalatkayong ugoy ng pagsasamantala. Turuan silang maging mapanuri. Kilalanin ang totoong naglilingkod sa bayan, gawing huwaran si Sen. Gordon at magsilbing pamantayan ng isang magaling na namumuno.
Like· Reply · March 14 at 9:55pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio I appreciate and understand your perspective, Evangeline, kaibigan ko, and I have been observing Duterte for eight months now. If, as you say, Gordon is not perfect, then Duterte falls far below mediocrity.

Please understand that I am only being objective in comparing the two public servants based on their policy positions and even according to Gordon’s own criticism of Duterte. Therefore, my premise that they would both govern very differently and even in opposition to each other, is factually based.

For example, I have pointed out numerously that Duterte’s neglect of defending Panatag Shoal violates the sovereignty clause of the Constitution, and is an impeachable offense. Even Gordon acknowledges that as should my esteemed colleagues of law, Atty Taipan Millan, Jose Camano, Gretchen Mae Ortega, Alexander Yalung, and Lester Nazarene Ople. This is the most important issue for me, since one of the primary functions of government is to protect the sovereignty of its territory.

If the President fails to perform such a fundamental function, then anything else he does is in vain. It is analogous to having all the prosperity in the world, except you are someone’s servant. It appears that is precisely the position that Duterte has put the Philippines in with China.

Gordon, on the other hand, would never let that happen as president. He has even said that RP would have to engage in war over Panatag Shoal in order to assert its rights. Why would any of our kababayans support Duterte’s position over Gordon’s? This is a sincere question, kaibigan ko.

Like· Reply · March 18 at 5:36pm · Edited
Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Also, I did give Duterte credit for “persuading” more than 700,000 drug-related criminals to surrender. However, I also mentioned that drug abuse is about 4.74%, which is below the global average of 5%, while the poverty rate is about 25%. As a simple man, I can’t help but wonder why Duterte has prioritized drug addiction over job creation. Does that seem logical to you? Do you really think Gordon would do the same as president? This is another sincere question, kaibigang Evangeline.
Like· Reply · March 16 at 5:56pm
Philip BasilioPhilip Basilio Marcial Bonifacio Senator Gordon is much deferent I work with him when he is the mayor of olongapo
Like· Reply · March 16 at 6:06pm
Evangeline MejiaEvangeline Mejia kaibigang marcial,I agree and I must say that Gordon would indeed govern differently if not better, pero kasi hindi siya ang presidente ngayon kya sana tumakbo siya sa susunod at alam ko na ang mga pinoy, including me ,ay susuportahan siya…
Like· Reply · March 16 at 7:22pm
Evangeline MejiaEvangeline Mejia Sari Aya Malaya , ganun din naman ako SAri , pero nga kasi, walang maitutulong sa bansa natin ang mga negatibong batikos, lalo na pag ang mga supporters nya ang pinagsabihan mo ng masakit na salita, it would only create division,katulad mo din sila na umaasa ng pagbabago, sabihin mo man na nagbubulagbulagan which I think not (,hindi ako supporter nya, I didn’t vote for him), pero I think with all the crime and corruption in the country, we become an evil nation, so to speak kaya we deserve such president, we can only give him the chance to do whatever it takes to propel the country in a better state …
Like· Reply · March 16 at 7:31pm
Sari Aya MalayaSari Aya Malaya I admire your patriotism, Evangeline. We may not see eye to eye with Duterte but we, undeniably, agree to support Sen. Gordon as he endeavors to take the country back to every Filipino, from the system or economy that has been rigged to the advantage of the rich and powerful. We need his strong leadership to unify the country, to take the country to where it’s supposed to be.

Filipino people, per se, are not divided. Diversity in religion, political beliefs and other practices are the freedoms we enjoy under a vibrant democracy. It is our leaders and policy makers who are divided and can’t put their acts together for selfish reasons at the expense of the people they had promised to serve. And Sen. Gordon will change such political landscape and behavior.
Like· Reply ·March 16 at 10:25pm
Jocelle Rabulan Corpuz Rabulan Corpuz Well said and factual kaibigan. Saludo ako sayo. Dios Mabalos and Mabuhay!
Like· Reply · March 14 at 3:50pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Salamat po, kaibigang Jocelle! I spent a great deal of time with research and fact-finding for this commentary. I even wrote it in English for my Bisayan friends and colleagues. My goal is to unify the Gordon supporters, some of which oppose Duterte and the others which ironically support Duterte. After all, if we can’t unite just the Gordon supporters, how can we unite the entire country?
Like· Reply · March 14 at 6:46pm · Edited

Jocelle Rabulan CorpuzJocelle Rabulan Corpuz Thank you. As for me my respect is always for Gordon.
Like· Reply · March 14 at 7:31pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio This was all my research and fact-finding material.
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Like· Reply · March 14 at 6:52pm

Jocelle Rabulan CorpuzJocelle Rabulan Corpuz Wow
Like· Reply · March 14 at 7:34pm

Evangeline MejiaEvangeline Mejia kaibigang marcial, hindi ka nakatira sa Pilipinas at laong hindi sa Olongapo, ibang iba angnlarawan ng Pilipinas pagdating sa ibang bansa kaya mahirap mag analysis …ang tanong, ano ba ang nagagawa ng mga katulad nyo para malutas ang problema sa bansa

.both Gordon and Duterte are good leaders in their own right, taga gapo ako at alam ko ang pamamalakad ng mga Gordon doon,, maganda rin pero hiondi rin perfecto…si Duterte ngsisiskap lutasin ang mga problema sa bansa…I know, Gordon will be a good president and if he will run, uuwi ako pra bomoto at iboboto ko siya, but for now, l just want to give Duterte the benefit of the doubt…wala naman maitutulong ang mga batikos sa kanya at sa mga supporters nya…di makikinabang ang bansa kung tawagin siyang monster at tawagin din hypocrite ang mga supporters nya….
Like· Reply · March 14 at 7:49pm
Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio I wonder if Alejano and Trillanes got their idea of impeaching Duterte from my commentary. 😀…/alejano-says…/ar-BByxrA4…

Alejano says impeach complaint vs. Duterte stays
Magdalo Party list Rep. Gary Alejano said Vice President…
Like· Reply · March 26 at 1:27pm

Evangeline MejiaEvangeline Mejia kaibigang marcial,alejano is just a “kaning sundalo” like trillanes, he doesn’t love the country, pretends for his own sake….
Like· Reply · April 10 at 7:06pm · Edited

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Marahil tama ka, kaibigang Evangeline, nguni’t hindi ko alam what is in his heart. I only know that his impeachment complaint has merit. Even Justice Carpio has warned that Duterte may be in violation of the sovereignty clause of the Constitution.
Like· Reply · April 16 at 4:39pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio I’ve decided to insert the following quote into my commentary, Alwyn, directly after Duterte’s single remedy of killing drug-related criminals and Gordon’s numerous remedies.
Image may contain: 1 person, text
Like· Reply · March 26 at 1:51pm · Edited

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio My friends, here is another contrast between Duterte and Gordon—the issue of giving away the housing units to the squatters. Gordon has expressed his disapproval thus:

“My God. Kinukuha yung bahay na ginawa ng NHA [National Housing Authority]. Ibibigay mo dun sa mga nanggugulo. Bad signal, Mr. President. Again you are falling on your own sword. Nadadapa ka sa sarili mong espada because pagka-ganyan, that’s a ticket to what you call anarchy.”…/gordon-letting-kadamay-keep…

What say you, Jeffry and Alwyn?

Gordon: Letting Kadamay keep houses ‘ticket to anarchy’
Sen. Richard Gordon disagreed on Wednesday with…
Like· Reply ·April 9 at 1:53pm

Alwyn BalingitAlwyn Balingit Already posted my comment about this on my wall days ago… Granted dapat talagang paalisin ang mga squatters, moving forward, wala na kasing red tape sa pagbigay ng mga bahay para di sila maunahan ng mga squatters; dapat preventive, may bantay.

Expect Digong to always err on the side of letting squatters live there; or at least, transfer them first to another place before removing them there. Yan ang stance nya kasi even sa mga Pre-Election interviews.
Like· Reply · April 9 at 4:58pm
Jeffry DyJeffry Dy Nice argument Marcial,if what u say is the alternative to what kadamay been bitchin and monin about then it’s all fare and equal no matter what the bias media says if Duterte or his cabinet have any brains on this matter then all is fare what not?
Like · Reply ·  April 9 at 10:52pm
Evangeline MejiaEvangeline Mejia kasi naman laging ang mahihirap ang nahuhuli sa kahit ano mang social benefit mula sa gobyerno. maging dyan sa NHA kaya they resort to this, madala kasi yang mga nasa gobyerno ginagamit ang “legal” para apihin ang mahihirap…hay naku, you really have to be living in the Philippines to really know…..
Like· Reply · April 10 at 7:12pm
Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio I have no problem with the process being swift, kaibigang Alwyn, nguni’t the rule of law should not be compromised. Once that line is crossed, that slippery slope can and will be used as a justification for any lawless behavior by any president.

It would also encourage more people with illegitimate grievances to emulate the Kadamay in their pantawid mentality. At least, Duterte could have imposed mandatory community service for those squatters in order that their housing will actually be earned instead of stolen from those who risk their lives to keep us safe.Sa totoo lang, such measures have been implemented in the US before Obama and even in some European countries, which have experienced lower unemployment as a result.
Like· Reply ·  April 16 at 5:18pm · Edited
Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Marahil totoo ito, kaibigang Evangeline, nguni’t abusing the legal system in one way should not justify abusing it in another way. Robbing Peter to pay Paul is still robbery, regardless of the good intentions. Even Gordon was critical of Duterte for this. Surely he knows better than Duterte.
Like · Reply · April 16 at 5:56pm
Axel DhollyAxel Dholly mas matalino si Dick kay digong. ,,,,naging Pres. nga lang si Pdut.
Like· Reply · April 9 at 2:00pm

Carolina Baro BalmacedaCarolina Baro Balmaceda Lol! Ikaw talaga, Marcial! 🙂
Like· Reply · April 10 at 1:37pm

Marcial BonifacioMarcial Bonifacio Well since Gordon is among my top 10 role models, next to Dr. Jose Rizal, Apolinario Mabini, and Thomas Jefferson, I’ll gladly accept that as a compliment, kaibigang Carolina. 🙂
Like· Reply · April 16 at 6:01pm

My Concerns about a Duterte Presidency

Updated 6/05/16

By Marcial Bonifacio

My friends and countrymen, with Congress’ proclamation of Rodrigo Duterte as the 16th president of the Philippines (clenching 16,601,997 votes), I wish to convey some of my concerns.  I have posed them based on his proposals, actions, and what he has said publicly.  Such issues should be sufficiently addressed before any of our kababayans give him our full support.

First and foremost, the president must protect and defend the Constitution and respect the rule of law.  According to Article III, Sect. 1 of the Constitution, “No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws.”  Duterte’s Davao Death Squad has executed over 1,000 alleged drug lords and murderers, all of whom were denied the fundamental right to due process.  Duterte expresses no remorse and is even boastful he will continue that policy under his presidency.

He was even unapologetic for his daughter (Sara Duterte), who attacked and physically assaulted Davao City Sheriff Abe Andres a few years ago.  Ironically, both Dutertes were attorneys, reinforcing the idiom that “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.”  Such uncivil acts are slippery slopes to more lawless behavior, are they not?  How can we feel safe and certain that Duterte will not infringe on our own rights and liberty due to his thirst for criminal blood or impulsive temperament?

Second, several factors, including self-reliance and free enterprise, are essential to transforn the Philippines into a prosperous nation.  Unfortunately, Duterte does not seem to promote any of those principles.  On the contrary, he is a self-avowed socialist, who proposes to expand the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.  That would only perpetuate what Sen. Dick Gordon said is “the attitude of mendicancy among our people, which we have had more than enough over the last four centuries or so.”  I would add that such handouts (derived from hardworking taxpayers) would also prolong unemployment and encourage the systematic development of a welfare state.

Even more alarming is Duterte’s sympathy towards communists.  That is apparent in his proposals to designate cabinet posts to communists, grant amnesty to NPA prisoners, and end the exile of Jose Sison, founder of the Communist Party of the Philippines.  Duterte’s campaign manager, Leoncio Evasco Jr., was even a member of the NPA (New People’s Army).

Could Duterte himself be a communist?  If not, then why is he negotiating with them and inviting them to join the national government?  For someone known for his stringent form of justice (earning him the international reputation Time Magazine branded as “The Punisher”) even to the point of proposing the return of the death penalty by hanging, is it not inconsistent for him to be so lenient with terrorists who seek to overthrow our government?

My friends, I appreciate Duterte’s forthright oratory and maverick predisposition in opposing the oligarchy.  Such can also be said of the American presidentiable Donald Trump, but I digress.  Anyway, appealing rhetoric and opposition to the ruling class alone are insufficient in determining a suitable president. If they were sufficient, then it can be argued that Vladimir Lenin (Bolshevik leader of Russia), Fidel Castro (president of Cuba), and Robert Mugabe (president of Zimbabwe) should be heralded as great public servants.  However, history indicates otherwise, and until my concerns are sufficiently addressed, I must deduce that Duterte will be no different.

Jocelle Rabulan Corpuz

Jocelle Rabulan Corpuz Let’s just watch and wait for the outcome of his leadership as The President. Give him the benefit of the doubts and consider his achievements in Davao City. May God save our Country and people for whatever consequence we may face for his actions and laws he will implement. I know he is capable to lead but my fear is his inconsistency and the people he has chosen for the cabinet position. Remember the past history my friend … the failures of great leaders lies on his men and the people whom they trusted. God have mercy.

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Jocelle, my issue with Duterte is not that I don’t trust him, but that he will continue with his extra-judicial executions, of which he is boastful.

Are you disappointed that he has denied Leni Robredo the National Anti-Poverty Commission post?

Jocelle Rabulan Corpuz

Jocelle Rabulan Corpuz I am disappointed of his inconsistency and giving way for BBM due to “utang na loob” now assigning him as being the president assistant. Proving that he recognize BBM as the VP.

Dodong Aberca


Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Jocelle, are you referring to the alliance between Rodrigo Duterte’s father and Pres. Marcos or the financial contributions BB Marcos made to the Duterte campaign for his presidential run?

Dodong Aberca

Dodong Aberca no…….it is true….so u must dbg shares

Jocelle Rabulan Corpuz

Jocelle Rabulan Corpuz Kaibigan my apology … I choose to just be silent but be vigilant in observing and watchful for the outcome of the leadership of our new elect President. Praying he will acknowldege God above all and put my people’s welfare as well our Country first. God bless him and The Philippines.

Philip Basilio

Philip Basilio God help the Philippines

Hill de Roberts

Hill de Roberts No comment–I’ll wait after his first 100 days 🙂

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Very well, my friend. Do you at least have anything to say about his insensitivity to the female missionary, who was raped and murdered, Hill?

Paul Farol

Paul Farol My friend, I’ll give him enough rope to hang himself with.

But here’s the thing, on the other side of this thing are the yellowtards who have all but proven to be much, much worse than the people they replaced.

We hit Digong, the yellowtards get stronger. We are currently at an impasse.

As much as it pains me to say this, we have to make this presidency work.

If, despite our sincere efforts to help this presidency succeed and it fails, PDiggity will have no one to blame but himself.

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Paul, I really don’t know which is worse. On the one hand, we have a president surrounded by politicians, who seem either corrupt or inept in dealing with our country’s age-old problems. On the other hand, we have another perfectly capable president-elect who may be able to finally resolve those issues. However, he would maintain peace and order by suppressing our people’s most fundamental rights guaranteed by the Constitution. At least, Pres. Marcos did so under martial law.

Dodong Aberca

Dodong Aberca r u freak this man hasn’t started yet!!!

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Dodong, I can only judge someone according to his track record. Perhaps Duterte seeks to revive the death penalty in order to deter current criminals and potential criminals, making the extra judicial killings obsolete. That would be a compromise I am willing to concede.

Biernes Atrece

Biernes Atrece Very well said, kaibigan

Joseph Hinds

Joseph Hinds Marcial, I share some of your concerns, but it is far too soon to tell what President-elect Duterte is going to do. He seems to be something of a chess player and a gambler when it comes to politics, so his methodology may be a bit unorthodox. At least in his case, we can see the results he achieved in Davao City. He may very well have broken some eggs, but the omelet turned out well. The extra judicial killing presents something of a conundrum because the judicial system has become so corrupt that the syndicates, oligarchs and drug lords can buy their way out of trouble even in the face of damning proof of guilt. If the system of laws no longer works for justice, then is it really an injustice when other means are used? Likewise the acceptance of the communists at the cabinet level is a novel approach. The Philippines have had a running war with the CPP for almost 50 years and have still not succeeded in getting rid of them. Perhaps by including them in the political process at the cabinet level, their position as revolutionaries can be undermined and cause them to loose some of their appeal to their followers. They may also be more willing to disavow violence in order to retain their new found political relevance. Also, I not so sure that a little socialism in the Philippines would be a bad thing. I think it would be to the benefit of the average citizens to have the power company’s monopolies either opened to foreign competition or simply nationalized. It is ridiculous that electric rates in the Philippines are three times what they are in the USA and they still get hit with regular brown-outs. Let’s let DU30 have his chance. It’s not as if his predecessors have set the benchmark very high.

Evangeline Mejia

Evangeline Mejia very well said sir!!!exactly my thoughts…may I share your comment?

Joseph Hinds

Joseph Hinds Yes Evangeline, feel free to share if you wish

Evangeline Mejia
Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Joseph, your points are well taken. However, on the issue of dealing with the communists, I think that it would be better if Duterte implement his proposals to liberalize the economy and establish a Philippine federalist system. That would serve as the basis for a long-term plan to create jobs and promote competition, which would lower prices and provide better services.

Such a successful economy would crowd out the communists without appeasement or bloodshed. Offering them cabinet posts reminds me of Pres. Obama appointing Van Jones (member of the Communist Party) as “Green Czar.”

In terms of a little socialism in RP, I think that at least on a subsistence level as food and medical services, it is reasonable for the destitute. I also appreciate Duterte’s proposal to improve internet services:…/duterte-improve-internet…

Joseph Hinds

Joseph Hinds You might be right about the communists, but Van Jones and his friends weren’t killing people on a regular basis so there is a considerable distinction between the two examples. An improving economy will help without a doubt, but it will take a while for that to reach fruition, so perhaps we can look at this as a stop-gap measure to quell the violence in the short term.

Perci Lozano Piña

Perci Lozano Piña Hindi ko po nagustuhan yung comment nya about sa Media.

Hide 20 Replies
Dexter Neil Ramos

Dexter Neil Ramos Because you didnt make yourself to understand what the presidenr meant. media are always dont ynderstand the point what duterte mean. We davaoneos understand him what he said. not all media is generalize. Some media to those practicing unethical.

Jose Camano

Jose Camano its duterte who is very unethical — unfortunately he was elected President by people who want a change in the govt. without having to change themselves. vote buying was rampant from all sides..

Paul Farol
Paul Farol

Paul Farol This was the quote by gma7

Paul Farol's photo.
Jose Camano

Jose Camano Paul Farol What’s wrong with you Farol? Who says that a journalist was silenced because he was a crook, or because he was crusading? Everytime Duterte silences small time “violator” of the law, he would claim the victim was a drug pusher or snatcher. Obviously u just have to believe Duterte’s word for it. Without a process, nobody knows that the victim was a real criminal or just someone whose face Duterte doesn’t like.

Perci Lozano Piña

Perci Lozano Piña Ito na naman tayo sa “We davaoneos” stop regionalism po.

Paul Farol

Paul Farol Jose there’s nothing wrong with me, i’m just citing what was said by PDiggity and what was said by another journalist who viewed the press conference.

Thing is, I’ve met a lot of hao shao/acdc journos and I know their MOs. I also know of at least two who were involved in shady deals that were later assassinated by people they double crossed.

We can’t paint people angels and devils, it’s a much more complex situation that someone, from the outside, can comprehend.

Paul Farol

Paul Farol And yes, I am interested to know of the cases where Digong had a reporter killed based on false accusations of being a druggie or drug dealer. If there is any evidence, I would gladly confront him with it.

I never liked Duterte, btw. In fact I gave him a good bashing all through out the campaign period and even before that.

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Perci, to be fair to Duterte, he clarified that he was referring to the corrupt journalists who accepted bribes, only to later oppose the ones who gave them money. He does not advocate the murders, but he says they are to be expected from basically double crossing the ones paying the bribes.

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio However, his catcalling to the journalist Mariz Umali was certainly inappropriate and perhaps illegal. According to Davao City Ordinance No. 5004 (which he signed), whistling can be construed as sexual harassment.…/135111-duterte-catcalling…

Jeffry Dy

Jeffry Dy Is catcalling again an issue jeez get real this bs had been there the whole time and in the Us i believe its legal whether this is legal or not this nonsense reporting has to move on and get on the real objectives at hand like whats in store for digong since many are still doubting him for being pro china and such and Can we be venezuela(again)on his federal form of gov as what bashers still installing in our minds???Well find out and also i may suggest to have all of transpo and public hubs free wifi to have convience of passengers and also for communication and I may say he had the guts to do so and i believe this has to end on this alleged pro commie since i voted for him and has the same accomplishments of what dick did in Subic.

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Jeffry, I agree that the issues you raised are important, but if Duterte will not follow his own ordinance (which is fairly simple), how can we trust that he will respect and follow more serious laws? There is even talk of a potential Duterte dictatorship:…/most-powerful-ph-leader…|By Gil C. Cabacungan
Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Gordon can address all of those issues within the restraints of the law. He can definitely be trusted.

Jeffry Dy

Jeffry Dy I don’t think so plus he’s Pro left therefore as such he may not be a patientlike dick does but he’s definitely a pro poor and he addresses his laws at hand since many are still criticized him again on this bs bias on media freedom and a former prosecutor(not a radical left)

Jeffry Dy

Jeffry Dy also he joined edsa 1 right?if he’s pro makoy then he wouln’t rallied this dictatorship had it for so long it had to be arrested for having allies w npa which aquinos are also sided on and I’m just balanced on this matter so far only some unknown politicians and a card leaning leftist are in the gov so we can no longer see them rallying in the streets anymore since every presidents have a sona every year

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio Jeffry, I’m willing to give Duterte a chance. However, his leftist background and apparent coddling of communists makes me very suspicious. Also, I don’t consider policies which keep our kababayans dependent on government handouts “pro-poor”, unless you mean keeping them permanently poor. On the other hand, Sen. Gordon stresses job opportunities, which will raise people out of poverty. What can be more “pro-poor” than that?

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio On the issue of Duterte joining EDSA 1, perhaps he opposed the Marcos dictatorship because it did not conform to his own political ideology. After all, Pres. Marcos vehemently opposed the communists. Some even argue that he was the reason for the swelling of the NPA.

Also, many argue that the Marcos oligarchy was simply replaced with the Cory Aquino oligarchy. Therefore, Duterte’s participation in the first People Power Revolution doesn’t necessarily mean he opposes dictatorship; it only proves he opposed the Marcos dictatorship.

Dale Gozar
Dale Gozar Marcial Bonifacio
Duterte admitted he’s leftist but never been part of the Communist Party or rebel, and certainly don’t belong to NPA, NDF, etc. even if he has befriended them (Singson)
Duterte also think solution to our insurgency problems (Communist or Moro) is largely political and not military or use of arms – 47 years of conflict with gunbattles proved that.

Communist/Moro arms struggles occurs when there’s a Very Big gap between RICH and POOR due to corruption and exploitation by the oligarch of the common Filipino – with only the rich getting richer while the poor gets poorer.

North Korea is the only remaining communist country.
Yes he values the lessons learned from former communist and socialist countries. But it doesn’t mean he will adopt a communist government.

Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio On the issue of India’s growing population, the country is becoming increasingly prosperous. According to Forbes:

India is the world’s 4th largest IT start-up hub with more than 3,100 tech startups in the past year alone. It ranks second in worldwide food production. Its auto industry churns outs 22 million cars a year, making it one of the world’s largest auto manufacturers. It boasts a $600 billion retail market and is one of the world’s fastest growing e-commerce markets.…/india-asias-next-economic…/…

RP is abundant in natural resources and an educated, English-speaking workforce. What it lacks are job opportunities and sufficient foreign direct investment. If Gordon were in Duterte’s presidential position, he would do precisely what he did in Subic Bay, which was all lawful and constitutional. He would also lift trade restrictions similar to India.|By Ed Fuller
Jeffry Dy

Jeffry Dy so by contrast du30 hasn’t have any clue on how to regulate trade restrictions and I had an Indian friend on fb who is critical of moodi because most of India’s tech he said was defective and also his Us trips as well…/bjp-modi…/story/1/7763.html What i said was pro-poor because the poor themselves getting opportunities to see how he can handle things when he accomplished in Davao and many voted on him because of that even the tulfo bros the respectable tough talking journalist in media believes on his accomplishments too.Well I respect your opinion on not giving him a chance on this and thanks for having exchange of ideas in regards to du30 leadership you have yours i have my side and as such you make things balanced and constructive.

Perci Lozano Piña

Perci Lozano Piña So yung namatay sa Maguindanao nabayaran din ba yun or kurakot din?

Cha Aguilar

Cha Aguilar…/marie-yuvienco–first-things…

Whatever it is, I can only hope it is not grounded on settling scores or paying political debts. As he himself…
Marcial Bonifacio

Marcial Bonifacio That is an interesting article related to Gordon and Estrada, Cha. However, I disagree with the writer’s last point. I hope Duterte does implement some of his proposals, just not all of them. 🙂

Philip Basilio

Philip Basilio Sana unahin bitayin ang mga lumapastangan Sa bansa Sa malawakan pagnanakaw panloloko at pandaraya Sa halalan 2016

Jeffry Dy

Jeffry Dy Sana nga at etong si daldallima ay umeeksena naman hayy naku naman oh!

Oscar Saddul


Oscar Saddul
Hill de Roberts
Hill de Roberts Quite frankly, I have NO concerns. What the corrupt Media say is either malicious news, innuendos and scare-mongering. I will wait and observe and give my ownobservation from July 1st, in the next 100 days of his term.
Like · Reply · 1 · 17 hrs · Edited

A Toast to Our Independence and Alliance!

Updated: July 4, 2017

Ni Marcial Bonifacio

Pagsasalinwika ni Sari Aya Malaya

Mga kaibigan at mga kababayan ko, isang tagay ng tagumpay para ating matagal ng kapanalig, ang Estados Unidos, sa pagdiriwang ng kanilang pampulitikang kasarinlan noong ika apat ng Hulyo, 1776 at ang pansarili nating kalayaan noong ika apat ng Hulyo, 1946. Ang ika apat ng Hulyo ay hindi lamang isang araw na tagumpay mula sa pagdanak ng dugo ng ating mga magigiting na kababayan na tumuligsa laban sa koloniyalismo at imperiyalismong pamamahala.

Ito rin ay araw nang hindi maipagkakait nating karapatan sa buhay, kalayaan at sa paghahanap ng kaligayahan na ipinagbubunyi ng kapwa nating pamahalaan. Sa pagdiriwang na ito, gunitain at bigyang pugay natin ang ating mga bayaning nagbuwis ng buhay para sa ating kalayaan at ang mga magigiting nating sundalong patuloy na nagtataguyod ng ating kaligtasan bago ang kanilang sarili.

Karagdagan, dalawa sa mga ama na nagtaguyod ng Amerika ay namatay limang oras bago ang ika-limampung anibersaryo ng Deklarasyon ng Kalayaan ng Amerika noong 1826. Ang isa ay ang may akda ng deklarasyon na siya ring pangatlong pangulo ng Amerika, si Thomas Jefferson. Ang isa naman ay kabilang sa mga lumagda sa US Konstitusyon at ang pangalawang pangulo na si John Adams. Sa mga pananalitang pabaon sa kanyang lamay, nabanggit ni Senador Daniel Webster ang nabiting panahon para sa dalawa. Dapat sana ay natapos nila and taon upang masaksihan ang ika-50 taon mula sa pagkakatatag ng kasarinlan. Ang araw na ito ang tanikalang nag-uugnay sa kanilang kagitingan kaakibat ang dangal ng bayan. Ang langit ay magbubukas at kagyat silang tatanggapin.

Sa ating pagdiriwang, magbigay pugay at parangalan natin sina Jefferson at Adams, at ang lahat ng mga bayaning nagbuwis ng buhay para sa ating kasarinlan. Gayundin ang ating mga kasundaluhang patuloy na nakikipaglaban para sa ating kaligtasan bago ang kanilang sarili.

Mabuhay ang ating matatapang na mga sundalo! Mabuhay ang ating kalayaan at alliance!

Philippines Veterans Day

My friends and countrymen, I propose a toast to our oldest ally, the U.S., in celebration of its independence on July 4, 1776 and our own independence on July 4, 1946. July 4th is not only a day we both share in the bloodshed of our brave patriots, who opposed colonial or imperialist governance, it is also the day our unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness were announced on which both our governments are based.

Additionally, two of America’s founding fathers died five hours apart on the 50th anniversary of America’s Declaration of Independence in 1826.  One was the author of the Declaration and the third U.S. president, Thomas Jefferson.  The other was a signatory to the U.S. Constitution and the second U.S. president, John Adams.  In his eulogy about the timing, Senator Daniel Webster said, “It cannot but seem striking and extraordinary, that these two should live to see the fiftieth year from the date of that act, that they should complete that year, and that then, on the day which had fast linked forever their own fame with their country’s glory, the heavens should open to receive them both at once.”

As we celebrate, let us also salute and pay tribute to Jefferson and Adams, and all those past heroes who have died for our liberty and the current soldiers who continue to put our safety before their own.

Long live our brave soldiers! Long live our independence and our alliance!

Figo Cantos no offense guys, but i’d rather have my flag on the top.. hehehe..
Marcial Bonifacio Hahaha! Figo, iyong perception ng mga bandila did not occur to me. Datapwa, still, ang Constitution at gobyerno ng RP ay American-based, kahit hindi precisely. Also, naisip ko ang model ng U.S. (without Aquino’s American twin brother, Obama) is still the best model for other democratic republics to emulate, due to the emphasis sa limited, separate, at balanced gobyerno. Talaga, America ay exceptional.
Lyn Cerdan Ka Marcial, pinapangalawahan ko ang sinabi ni Figo.. Mas higit kong nanaisin kung ang ating bandila ang nasa itaas ng Amerikano.
Alma Nemis tama ka Lyn.,,,,
Pamee a bird’s-eye view; two flags nicely arranged & positioned parallel to each other
Gretchen Mae Ortega i don’t celebrate it…haha
Marcial Bonifacio Angel, kaibigan ko, may ang pinakaobjective punto ka.
Marcial Bonifacio Gretchen, it is not too late to start, especially considering your potential.
Marcial Bonifacio Lyn, kaibigan ko, I have been seriously considering writing a blog tungkol sa ang importance ng American Founding Fathers, ang Declaration of Independence, at ang U.S. Constitution sa RP. An overview of the American Revolution and its context are vital, para our kababayans can truly understand America’s importance not only sa ang independence at Constitution ng RP in particular, nguni’t sa history ng world sa panlahat.
Lyn Cerdan maganda yang pinaplano mong yan Ka Marcial. I will look forward to that.
Gretchen Mae Ortega i can make some articles if i’d be vacant….i couldn’t think stressed…
Gretchen Mae Ortega but i think U.S. is too condescending towards the Philippines…She’s treating the Philippines like a first-grader as if it doesn’t have mind on its own….

Marcial Bonifacio Gretchen, you must simply know how to manage stress more effectively, when it cannot be prevented.

How is the U.S. being condescending towards RP? Kung totoo ito, is it not plausible? Does not the presidential election of 2010 sa RP reflect such a potential, negative view of the U.S.? Gayunpaman, the U.S. has much to deal with domestically and internationally. Samakatuwid, it must be cautious in its decisions which could have negative repercussions sa future, hindi ba?

Gretchen Mae Ortega too much work, it is…still finishing the final copy of my thesis and i have to read about 300+ pages just for this week..i wonder of you could teach me yoga just relieve my tired spirit..
Gretchen Mae Ortega anyways, that’s what i learned from my four-year stay in college being a political science student…that U.S. had some ill-meant reason why Phil. was under its tutelage for many years and still seemingly dependent towards the U.S. in its foreign policy…btw, am interested about the effects on the capture of bin laden because a classmate mentioned it it to me…can you send me some articles about it?:)

Terry Villarubia · Friends with Gretchen Mae Ortega

wow mura man kag si________________

Marcial Bonifacio Gretchen, kaibigan ko, that sounds like more than a handful of things for me to study. Marahil it would’ve been ideal had I attended school and finished with you, sapaka’t we could’ve coached each other and I would’ve advanced in my studies sooner, hindi ba?

Tungkol sa paksang yoga, I would be honored to teach you some basic techniques para sa stress relief, halimbawa, meditation at malalim na breathing. It would also improve your concentration with consistent practice. Just buzz me sa YM.

Tungkol sa paksang U.S. colonialism, it was only a temporary condition just as sa Afghanistan at sa Iraq ngayon. Once political stability is reached, the Americans will give complete autonomy to them just as it did with RP.

Tungkol sa paksang capture ni Bin Laden, I will find a few good articles para sa iyo and E-mail them, marahil bukas. It is notable that Bush was largely responsible for finding and killing Bin Laden, dili si Obama.

Gretchen Mae Ortega tnx in advance…i’m still cramming here because i have two hundred pages more to read…

July 28, 2011 at 6:45am

Lynne Adam Happy 4th of July!


Jeffry Dy Great read Marcial and i wasnt online last july 4.The change of the date started when Macapagal signed the proclamation no.To say that it was been celebrated the same day in the us and there r a lot of nationalist bleeding hearts crying and begging to make this as a change of date and month