Monday, December 18, 2006

Conservative Politics Begins in the Defense of the Constitution

Manuel L. Quezon III has the mountain-top view in his PDI essay today Parameters on the Charter Change saga. "It's proponents," he says, "like demented sea captains, kept running their efforts aground on the shoals of the Constitution, common sense and public opinion." Touchè. But I just hope his conclusion outlasts the Christmas and New Year holidays and that he isn't being too optimistic--
Only when the present proponents of constitutional change shall have realized this, will the time be ripe for the setting aside of past differences. Only then can a frank, but mutually respectful and productive, debate resume. But not before.
I am not so optimistic that the dementia referred to has quite been cured by the exorcism of a mere Prayer Rally at the Luneta Sunday -- which drew a thin crowd and has apparently encouraged Ed Ermita to hint at the Ghost of Chacha Future. Well, the gnomes have found the Instruction Manual to the Ship of State and they shall never tire of the part that says they can change anything that a simple majority ratifies in a plebiscite.

PDI's Neal Cruz notes that fundamentally conservative, anti-charter-change sentiments are indeed widespread--People don't want to change the Constitution, period. Not Pee-Eye or Con-Ass or Con-Con.

This sentiment is reflected in the stand of the Churches who are gently but firmly closing the door on any Bum's Rush to amend or revise it. The chacha choochoo train has palpably slowed and come to merciful halt, at least for now, with huge puff of steam quickly dissipating in the tremulous aire of Christmas! Instead of Charter Change, the Churches are calling for Character Change--an explicitly conservative theme in the politics of many democratic nations. The Constitution has thus united the Churches and their common political interests to maintain the status quo of untramelled democratic freedom to express, practice and organize their religion, including spiritual and material benefits. That the Churches are the real political parties is not so far-fetched a simile, for it is they who have vetoed and pushed back the "constituent insurgency" of Jose de Venecia by their representation of the popular sentiment. Vox populi, vox Iglesia.

But to me, the recent defense of the Constitution by the Churches against the "demented sea captains" was a profoundly important historic event in the life of the Republic and the oldest constitutional democracy in Asia. For it is the root and stock of a new Conservative politics for the Philippines.

I am using here the term conservative in direct opposition to the term liberal as it refers to the belief that a Bigger, Better Government can and should transform societies by changing the Law, changing the form of government, expanding its reach into every aspect of people's lives and claiming to be able to solve all or most of their problems with some special kind of enlightenment. This WAS the dementia that MLQ3 excoriates and against which the Churches demand a "mutually respectful and productive debate."

From now on in other words, more and more of the people cannot be fooled, period. Skepticism is a virtue more powerful than intellectual fantasy. Every proposed change must first be successfully navigated around the shoals of "the Constitution, common sense and public opinion" before the people are asked to shell out billions on somebody's pea-brained phantasm of the Next Great Leap Forward.

Such a healthy skepticism and suspicion of Big Government could spread beyond the arena of Constituent Power into Legislative Power, the Executive and the Judiciary and provide a fresh perspective for Filipinos on just what it is the People should realistically expect from the Government.

San Francisco's Fil-Am broadsheet Philippine News has republished my view point on this matter --
I think that in the Archipelago events have shown that most people want NO change at all now in the Constitution after seeing the wholesale revision of the form of government that chacha boosters actually wanted and the lengths they were willing to go to get it, including canceling the elections.

But a very good thing has happened. Even common tao now realize how one or two tiny words can change everything, and how easily the politicians can do it. Thus has the seed of a healthy suspicion and skepticism of the govt been planted!

Maybe it is the blessed birth of conservative politics.

Most simply do not believe that it is the form of government that is at fault, but the fact that the Law is not enforced and the Constitution is regularly violated by the highest officials.

Time to stick to one and make it work. Fine tune and evolve it yes. But revise and re-invent it? NO.
If you can't beat them, join them! No one practices the politics of surrender with more finesse and plastic smoothness than the President. The tactic has apparently worked, due to her intimate familiarity with what the Good Fathers and Holy Sisters expect of their contrite and obedient daughter to gain their forgiveness and compassion. Her unerring sense of just how far politicians can go, almost, but did not quite fail her this time. She had to cancel the ASEAN and her House allies are badly discredited, perhaps fatally.

So this is MORE than a flesh wound!


roger n said...

What is all this talk that the people have spoken? The religious leaders and the so called intellectual pundits have arrogantly spewed their positions and interests and claim to represent the majority public opinion. The sparse turnout in last sunday's rally of thanksgiving for no con ass bolds ill for them. Even though the polls supposedly indicate a majority against chacha these gutless anti chacha proponents refuse to allow the true voice of the people to be heard by having a plebicite to determine this issue once and for all. Perhaps the anti-chacha proponents are both afraid and cant afford to lose. For sure Renato Constantino's shame is badly misplaced

roger n said...

What is all this talk that the people have spoken? The religious leaders and the so called intellectual pundits have arrogantly spewed their positions and interests and claim to represent the majority public opinion. The sparse turnout in last sunday's rally of thanksgiving for no con ass bolds ill for them. Even though the polls supposedly indicate a majority against chacha these gutless anti chacha proponents refuse to allow the true voice of the people to be heard by having a plebicite to determine this issue once and for all. Perhaps the anti-chacha proponents are both afraid and cant afford to lose. For sure Renato Constantino's shame is badly misplaced.

Rizalist said...

I think it was JDV who said they were archiving the con-ass resolution because "we are listening to the people and the church leaders". GMA too. At least that was before the small rally. Today it's a different story. They'll never give up, espcially JDV who has a deadend job otherwise, and might even lose to Benjie Lim.

The rally was meaningless. It was public opinion as perceived by the palace itself that caused the retreat. But don't worry, if you like chacha, we shall be bashing it with regularity here. Coz it's just a dumb idea and we don't need a plebiscite to figure that out. It's just like you don't have to be rocket scientist to say no if the pilot of a plane you are riding on is seized with the urge to get rid of one wing.

I am prepared to be convinced--but it's hard.

roger n said...

the reason is quite simple really. No politician has the guts to attack the religious fascists because many of this country's over 80% catholics will respond to whatever is fed to them by the clergy. It is revealing that jdv mentioned the people together with the church leaders as if to imply they are one and the same on this issue. The political intervention of the religious groups will always be the determining factor in the resolution of this issue. I do not see them ever giving up their power to influence our choice of national leaders. Their voices become the loudest when any attempt is made to curtail that influence. This is the uphill climb of the pro chacha advocates. The explosive divisiveness is guaranteed by the position of the religious leaders. It is the reality of clerico-fascism alive and well in our so called "democracy".

Rizalist said...

Damn clerico fascists! always carrying around rosaries and hitting people over the head with their prayers and crucifixes forcing people to go to rallies. We need to do something about that. Maybe we should ban religion! Ah, but that involves real fascism with truncheons and blacklists and stuff. Maybe we should educate the people. Ah, but that's what Jdv is already doing. So, really, who needs priests eh?

The only real problem I have is that even that damn priests don't seem to understand what this provision of the constitution allows them to do:


roger n said...

by the way your point of view is no doubt well thought out and your part and has to be respected. but i fail to see the logic of your analysis. you say that one wing is missing as if pilots can only fly planes...pilots also fly rockets with no wings and you dont need to be a rocket scientist to figure that out as well..the only way to put chacha to bed is to take the issue to the people...the dumbest idea of all is preventing the true voice of the people from weighing in on this issue by whatever legal, political, logical, or moral reasons. The issue is not whether you are or i are convinced or not. It is to determine if the people see a need or not for charter change. It is arrogance to take a definite position either way until we debate the issues before the public and let them decide either way in a plebecite. Gold Medals arent won fairly by not playing the game. Congratulations anti-chacha advocates you have won your medal. Please wear it in shame!!

roger n said...

i do not take issue with religious leaders taking political fact i for one believe that priests and clergymen should be allowed to run for office since they are certainly true sources of integrity with their sense of morality and vows of poverty....what i do object to is the use of religious influence to prevent the voice of the people being heard. the issue is that plain and simple...banning religion is far from i was talking about

manuelbuencamino said...

roger n,

you give too much credit to the power of the church to influence the way people will vote. Even the bloc-voting power of INC and El Shaddai are more mythical than real. Once upon a time the church and INC had power. But we are more educated now and that power is not what it used to be.

Second, you lend too much credibility to the claims of Sigaw, Ulap, JDV, GMA and their minions. You continue to believe their claims of people support for cha-cha even after JDV and GMA admitted that there was none. I'm sure you read their statements explaining why they were backing down. I guess you just chose to ignore them

cvj said...

DJB, i concur with your thesis that the sentiment against Charter change basically reflects a conservative disposition. However, as for the Charter Change advocates, i would like to suggest that you call them something else (e.g. 'radicals' or 'reactionary radicals') instead of using the term 'liberal' as 'bigger or centralized government' is not necessarily a defining feature of their platform. Based on international usage, GMA and JDV could hardly be called liberals. 'Social democrats' may be applicable to some of their key supporters, but that's another story.

(I must admit a vested interest in the term 'liberal' as i count myself as one and i don't want to be lumped with your designated liberals.)

Rizalist said...

hahaha, cvj. I'm leaning towards "Constitutional Revisionists" because it is more directly descriptive of what they are up to and can probably be made to stick.

But it is really integral to the hypothesis that the inheritors of this program to revise the Constitution and adopt a radically new form of govt WILL be the liberals of the future in exactly the sense that you and I understand the term.

Liberalism in that conventional sense is also rooted in the same idealism that becomes a warped hubris to remake the Constitution in the Revisionists.

I often describe myself as a liberal when it comes to the issue of civil liberties and personal freedoms, but it only confuses some people. So I've quit doing it.

But it would also confuse people here to call the Revisionists as liberals at this stage, because there is little appreciation for the conservative-liberal spectrum in the present discourse in the Archipelago. Which as you know is mostly sterile, boring and one-dimensional, except for the blogs!

roger n said...

Mr Buencamino,

You've entirely missed my point my friend. I have never made any claim that the people supported charter change as envisioned by the pro chacha supporters. The issue is that the people have never been allowed to participate on this issue through an electoral process. Its quite simple really and for you to belittle the religious influence in this travesty is to close your eyes to reality. The reason why the pro-chacha advocates backed down is that a direct confrontation with religious leaders is certainly going to be extremely divisive with potentially dire political and economic consequences regardless of where or not the people really want charter change or not. Can you tell me any political leader who wants to get anywhere fighting the religious groups tooth and nail on any issue? No i did not ignore the pro chacha statements. It was a gutless response to both prevent a deep political crisis and perhaps to preserve whatever political capital that they had left which they felt would erode by criticizing a cabal of unelected power hungry religious groups who have the bully pulpit that impacts any important political issue. Pro and anti chacha proponents can never claim the public's support until the ballot is put into play. That is my point plain and simple. Do not tell me the people dont support chacha because in your mind they dont. The proof is in the pudding. If you claim to be educated I cant believe you dont support the simple notion that the people's voice is what matters. None of us can legitimately claim to know that voice if it is muffled by arrogant people who think they know everything. Why do think there is such a concerted effort to muffle this voice? it perhaps the stakes are too high and some parties cant afford to lose? You can pontificate and analyze all you want Mr Buencamino but please realize the fallacy of those who claim to know what the people want but use all the means in their power to muffle their voice!!!

roger n said...

By the way Mr Buencamino...your first statement is a claim that i may put too much credit to the power of the church to influence the vote. Maybe thats why they dont want a vote on chacha? Shameless isnt it?

Tom said...

Am I being naive in my observation that when the pro-administration forces talk about charter change, using whatever method (PI, Con-Ass) at the moment, they seem to assume that whatever proposals are put forth will surely be approved by the voting public? This is independent of my opinion that the pro-administration faction has been indecent and corrupt in both attempts at cha-cha, not to mention plain wrong.

One more reason why I'm for free and honest elections. Much better if the populace is well-informed. But no matter what, no one but no one should presume to know (much less dictate to others) who should sit in governance. It is the sole prerogative of the voting public in a constitutional republic to decide who should lead their government.

Rizalist said...

The particular chacha proposals of the House and that right of suffrage you mention are intimately related because switching to a unicameral parliament will automatically eliminate the vote for President, Veep, and Senators -- no more national voting rights!

That wasn't very clear to many people at first you know! It still isn't. But it IS the reason the thing would never be ratified at plebiscite.

roger n said...


What you are naive about is making a judgement that the administration is presuming a victory at the polls whatever the chacha changes happen to be. That was never their position. All they wanted was a chance to present their case to the people and it is the people who will decide their own fate
on whether to accept chacha or not.

Whatever conclusions you make personally does not entitle you to speak on behalf of others who may differ from you. That is the point of all this plain and simple.

If you and all the other anti-chacha opponents feel that these chacha moves are all the machinations of a corrupt group of politicians then it should be easy enough for them to be defeated in a referendum or plebicite. In fact those surveys have even indicated that a 2/3 majority is supposedly against chacha. So why all these efforts to prevent the resolution of this issue once and for all by taking it to the best true expression of the people's will? What gutless cowards who seem to have victory in their grasp yet refuse to play the game.

Eric said...

Tom, I think you've hit the reason why I have a problem with allowing a plebiscite to push through. With the sheer arrogance that the pro-chacha advocates are trying to ram their revisions through, it's possible that they will do everything in their power, including cheating, to ensure a win. It won't be the people's voice that will be speaking in that case.

DJB, don't forget that we've had a version of a unicameral parliament during the Marcos years, and it was a virtual rubber stamp, a situation that could very well duplicate itself if the change to parliament pushes through.

roger n said...


Do you know the difference between a dictatorship and a democracy? The Marcos parliament was a rubber stamp is based on the understanding of that difference. Are you seriously thinking that this would be the same case if a unicameral parliament was put in place in this day and age? Dont be naive Eric. I'm sure even djb wouldn't agree with your attempt at implying the similarities of the two.

If these pro chacha advocates are all about subverting the people's will by massive cheating, i need to see the evidence. Every election has massive polling that is done up the last minute. Exit polling is also a factor in predicting results. Massive cheating will certainly be apparent if the results dont jive well with the polls. Any more excuses for not having a plebecite my friend?

Jego said...

You could still get your wish for a plebiscite via a People's Initiative, roger. One that is sufficient in form and substance of course. That option is still viable for pro-chacha people such as yourself. The House-only con-ass and concon bandied about will not wash in the supreme court and the House knows it. It wasnt because of the sentiment of the people which time and time again in the past they have chosen to ignore. That was just spin to justify their cutting and running to prevent another ignominious defeat in the Court.

Rizalist said...

Just saw the following Statement on the Palace Website:There are three realities we face as a nation: one, that the people accept the need for Charter change to overhaul the system; two, that there is a need for a unified national consensus on the means and timetable; and three, that this is a platform commitment of the administration that will be pursued with urgency and fervor.

These realities will continue to shape our actions for the better future of the Philippines—working closely and inclusively with all stakeholders and institutions; observing transparency; and backing up the entire process with a strong economy, social payback and values programs.

This is a matter of paramount national interest and our leaders must all rise to the challenge.

ricelander said...

Roger n.,

You say: " though the polls supposedly indicate a majority against chacha, these gutless anti-chacha proponents refuse to allow the true voice of the people to be heard... Perhaps the anti-chacha are both afraid and can't afford to lose..."

Where's the sense is saying they are afraid and can't afford to lose while suggesting they could not possibly lose. Ahh, because you think they will lose. How-- you don't say!

You say: "No politician has the guts to attack the religious fascists because many of this country's over 80% will respond to whatever is fed to them by the clergy."

So who's gutless here? If Gloria and JDV believe they have the support of the majority, contrary to the opposition's claim, why retreat? What percentage of that 80% you think are mindless sheeps? They should lose no time in mounting another assault. We're holding our breath.

You say, "If these pro-chacha advocates are all about subverting the people's will by massive cheating, I need to see the evidence..."

I suppose you mean evidence to prove accusation BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT. If you ask me, I have seen enough evidence to guide myself. I suppose so too for those who fear massive cheating from the same cabal who made a byword of "Garci" and "Jocjoc". You need to see the evidence? that's comforting. But you need us to convince you of the evidence? Why do we need to or why should anyone bother? That you still have to see a tiny shred in the past elections to this day to give you any doubt, what could possibly make you do?

ricelander said...

And if I may use your own line of argument: If the anti-chacha groups are all about subverting the people's will by preventing a plebiscite, I need also see the evidence...

Jego said...

With that palace statement, Im beginning to rethink my earlier theory that the Palace got word from their contacts in the Supreme Court that House-only Conass is doomed. It seems that that's not true. It seems that theyre just stupid. Spectacularly so. Stupid and brazen. That's a scary combination.

roger n said...


Do not estimate the public's capacity to gauge who are the true players in the current scenario. If the movers and shakers of society truly believe that gma cheated her way to power and should be toppled it would've happened by now.

I dont think anything about who will win or who will lose. The basic point is the bs that keeps being bandied about that the people have spoken and they dont want chacha. The arrogance of that statement without tha ballot being in play is abundantly clear. The retreat had nothing to do with who validly claims a majority. It was based on the potential political and economic crisis that a confrontation with the religious groups would entail.

The evidence of the anti chacha groups is subverting the people's will by preventing the plebecite is plain and simple. No electoral exercise that would settle this issue once and for all is on the horizon. It doesnt take a rocket scientist to figure out the reasons for this does it?

Jego said...

Hi roger. Correct me if Im wrong but the anti-chacha groups didnt prevent the plebiscite. PI was judged insufficient in form (and to a certain extent, in substance) by the SC. The Con-ass was withdrawn by the house majority. If they truly believed they were right in their claim that a Senate-less Con-ass was constitutional, they shouldve gone ahead with it and let the Supreme Court decide. They didnt. They cut and run, preventing a case from being filed, and therefore preventing a ruling. If they thought they were right, they wouldve ignored the clamor from the anti-chacha people, dont you think so?

Like I said, the best option for you is the People's Initiative. Chief Justice Puno would rule in favor of one if it proves sufficient in form and substance. (No change to unicameral parliamentary though. I think they ruled that a revision, not an amendment.)

ricelander said...

"If the movers... of society truly believe that GMA cheated her way to power and should be toppled, it would have happened by now."

Well, I'm thinking; is that perhaps a rocket scientist conclusion-- GMA has not been toppled yet, ergo, she did not cheat. Wonderful logic!

"The basic point is the bullshit that keeps being bandied about that the people have spoken and they don't want chacha..."

I don't know but GMA was at least quoted once as saying "the people have spoken" a day or so ago, the reason why the great retreat.

"the retreat had nothing to do with who validly claims a majority. It was based on a potential political and economic crisis that a confrontation with religious groups would entail..."

You are fighting for that you sincerely believe in then go retreating by the mere bluff of tyrannical religious leaders? If I may use your word: GUTLESS!

"The evidence of the anti chacha group in subverting the people's will by preventing the plebescite is plain and simple. No electoral exercise that would settle the issue once and for all is in the horizon..."

THAT is evidence!... beyond reasonable doubt! hehe. Know any rocket scientists, guys?

roger n said...


The question is not whether Gma cheated or not. It is what is a generally perceived unpalatable alternative. One Edsa One and Dos participant was quoted as saying "how can i possibly join the anti-gma rallies when I will be standing side by side with people i fought against during edsa 1 and 2".

If you read what i said carefully you will realize i also called the reaction of the pro-chacha forces in backing down also a gutless move. I've already given you the obvious reason for the backdown. While I dont agree with it the argument that has an objective of preventing a political and economic crisis has merit.

Gee not only do you fail to see evidence glaring before your eyes, you may have a problem of properly comprehending what you read.

Rizalist said...


I hear you on the matter of "allowing the voice of the people to be heard." This is a fundamentally important thing in a democracy.

But let me probe your understanding of the concept so I know where you are coming from.

I guess the main thing I am curious about is where you are in the spectrum between "full direct democracy" and "representative democracy".

Would you for example support a democracy where every citizen has a cell phone and virtually at any time a vote on most important national matters can be taken quickly and accurately?

Why or why not?

I think your answer bears on the question of the plebiscite being called just to see what the people are thinking.

Under normal circumstances the answer to this question is really regular, free democratic elections. In other words, if people want chacha, the conventional theory is they can always elect candidates that promise to do chacha.

But what is the better mechanism do you think?

roger n said...

Thanks Dean on finally understanding my simple point.

I dont think its important if i am for a "full direct democracy" or "representative democracy". What is important is that the people have a chance to determine the issue. My opinions on the matter would be pointless until we get that chance.

Obviously if it were possible for every citizen to have a cell phone and be able to vote anytime as issues come along, it would be an ideal situation. But you and i know it aint gonna happen.

The problem i have with resolving this issue by electing people based on pro or anti chacha positions is obvious. Candidates who've just spent thousands and millions of pesos to get elected to office could hardly be expected to give up their positions so easily and willingly. The impact and implications of charter change deserve a single issue electoral exercise. How could one who is for charter change be asked to vote for officials in the same ballot for positions they want abolished?

Rizalist said...

The technical problem of wiring up all the citizens into a direct democracy is not so tough, and in a way it is immaterial to the discussion. So indulge me and assume it can and has been done.

Why would such a situation be IDEAL?

Wouldn't such a society immediately fall into a series of possibly disastrous decisions in such plebiscites?

Suppose someone proposes that all wealth be redistributed so as to achieve ASAP the "ideal goal" of a fully egalitarian society.

Wouldn't a vote of YES have a very very good chance of winning?

Yet, that wouldn't really be IDEAL would it?

I think the problem is still that of deciding where we are in the spectrum between "direct" and "representative" democracy when we are trying to determine the "will" of the people.

We have to have some skepticism by the way about this "will" or voice of the People because strictly speaking the Constitution does not expect the people to be motivated by any particularly good or bad thing when they vote. They can vote for the silliest and the most sublime motives.

This is both a strength and a weakness.


Re cvj's comment on liberal identity and so on. Ditto that Dean.

roger n said...

you've lost me dean. The technical difficulty of wiring up all the citizens is not so tough? It of course relevant to the discussion but i will indulge you anyway. I fail to see how a fully egalitarian society is not an ideal situation for you. Forget about the logistical impossibility but to say that society would be disastrous is puzzling indeed!!! If everyone is willing to be wired to be a quick national response to issues, then they should also be willing to accept whatever the consequences may be. For that and that reason alone this will never happen because not all will ever be willingly be a part of it not to mention the civil and political privacy issues that would be stirred up.

The problem is deciding where we are in the spectrum before we determine the will of the people dean? Cmon Dean the issue is charter change here and the people know what system exists today and what charter change will mean if it occurs.

We are not talking about motivations here. That seems to be the point that anti chacha advocates are forever stuck on. We are simply talking about the right of citizens to express themselves regardless of their and the proponents motivations.

It is telling that you so concerned about the silly or sublime motives of the voters on this issue yet seem to have no problems with the silly candidates who manage to get elected to our many national posts.

The will of the people to choose between the present system and whatever results come out of a charter change is not as complicated as you think. Perhaps it is best not to overanalyze and fall victim to the paralysis of analysis.

Rizalist said...

The concept of a direct democracy such as I have described is a very well known academic model for an unworkable system. It is commonly used to lay the predicate for all modern democratic forms, which is representative democracy. It is NOT some technological problem that prevents the establishment of direct democracies, but the simple fact that a direct democracy cannot work.

BTW, there is no guarantee of equality, as a result, under a democracy! Only the guarantee of equal opportunity and equality before the Law.

Rizalist said...

But I am still interested in the problem of how to make the people's will better known, even on the issue of chacha.

In particular, the people's initiative mode needs to get going on the right foot. The problem I think with Lambino's PI is that it proposes too large an amendment, so large in fact that the Supreme Court considers it a wholesale revision, and therefore constitutionally forbidden. I don't agree that it IS a revision, but I agree that it is too large an amendment too big of a change for the PI mode.

What would you suggest as a more modest and realistic PI proposal for an amendment of the revision. Something that has a real chance of being ratified?


Right you are again, Dean, "BTW, there is no guarantee of equality, as a result, under a democracy!"

Absolutely not!

The law says that but even the law in fine, is virtually flawed when it boils down to real equality.

But doesn't mean that we should stop at trying to put in a bit of "hegemonity" in our flawed but working democracy.

That, I suppose is a government's first and prime task for democracy to work.


"So this is MORE than a flesh wound!"

If only we could sure it would result in lethal gangrene...Gloria would be no more.

Rizalist said...

Her Senate Slate is gonna run on a platform of chacha? a unicameral parliament? hahahaha

manuelbuencamino said...


I see your blog has been invaded by the Luli Brigade, Have fun.

I could answer Roger N point by point but what's the use. The idea is to attack the church amd to promote Arroyo's version of a new charter. I feel silly arguing against a propagabda line.

Bernardo F. Ronquillo said...

Renato Constantino's shame is in the right place - upon the heads of all the congressmen who rammed down con-con and shamelessly backtracked when they saw the ire of the people. Truly a lot of people, me included, were appalled at the temerity and shamelessness of these mis-representatives of the people.

The CBCP said that it is a MATTER OF TRUST, referring to Gloria. Well, that was hypochritical to say the least. They were part of the conspiracy against Erap that placed Gloria in Malacanang and therefore do not have the TRUST of the people. They called for a Prayer Rally and yet catered to the whim of Gloria how it should be done. Well, the people did not come. The people sees through them.

Oddly enough, the people trust ERAP more than Gloria and even the CBCP.

Rizalist said...

Everyone's welcome here. Even Luli.

Dave Llorito said...

i dont see any hint of conservatism in the anti-chacha movement. this group is really just a collection of government haters. i dont see them embracing a small government, free trade, globalizaton, and market-oriented policies. i dont see them supporting american intervention for global "democratization." most of them are left oriented whose ideology necessarily hinge on greater government intervention in the economy. they are the same people who forced arroyo to send the troops home when a truck driver showed up on tv begging for his life. i dont know where did you get the idea about emerging conservatism. maybe conservatism reflects your views, but not the anti-chacha coalition. far from it.

Rizalist said...

am not talking about THOSE folks. am talking about the people themselves, the churches, and even those who belong to leftist movements only because they have no alternative to give their efforts too.

Oh no, the usual suspects are definitely not conservatives. Like JDV and the House Majority , they are believers in big huge benevolent governments. They believe in the same fairy tales.


Hi Dean,

Am off till the end of the year but before going, I would like to wish you and everyone you love, a merry, merry Christmas and a very happy New Year.

Take care and see you in 2007.

Bernardo F. Ronquillo said...


roger n said...


If it is true that equal opportunity and equality before the law is what matters, the let us look at some basic facts.
All of you people who attack the pro chacha representatives of their moves will have to at least know that they and not you all are the ones who have been voted by the people. There is enough basis on their actions based on the specific portions of the constitution which muddles the true meaning of what a majority on this issue means. Equal opputunity in the law at least should allow the supreme court to rule on this issue and also allow the people to have at least have their say instead of making sweeping statements about the people dont trust whomever anymore. I am actually appalled by the statement that the people trust erap more that gloria and the cbcp. Where have the people spoken on this issue?

Actually what i really suggest is the simple question on whether the people want chacha or not. You seem to harp on points on "the people will never accept" "a better chance of ratification" as if you have already decided what the people will say. It is elitist arrogance of the highest form.

Why are you against the simple plebecite of yes or no on whether the people want to change the constitution and have a true debate of all the sides leading up to the election so that the people will be exposed fully to all the arguments and have the final say as it should be?

And if the changes are not to your liking if the people decide they want charter change then isnt the opportunity to campaign against it in the referendum/plebecite to decide the acceptance of the finished charter amendments/revisions the most fair and democratic way to resolve this issue once and for all?

Happy Holidays all!!!!

Rizalist said...

Thanks for your thoughtful questions and comments.

On the matter of using a plebiscite to find out whether the people want a change or not, we must remember that a plebiscite is mechanically and philosophically a lot like an election, not a way of seeking the people's advise, but a way of changing history!

So let me argue by analogy. Suppose I say to myself, I think the people want to make me the President of the Philippines. Why don't we have a plebiscite to find out? Well, there are elections, and so I can run. But there are many steps before the Presidential election itself before I even find out what a deluded fool I am . I have to get money to run, people to support me, political parties to adopt me, newspapers and media to write about me, my strengths, weaknesses, etc. Until finally there is clamor among enough people wanting me to run and supporting me all the way there.

It is the same with a Constitutional Amendment, which we can think of as "candidates" wanting to run for "office." There are steps BEFORE the plebiscite that qualify this candidate to run in it. Many steps.

Now since the people supporting the Unicameral Parliament appear to be serving themselves and their interests, and they are using illegal means for which they have only been mightily embarrassed, then they are reaping the opposition of people like me, who see what they are doing and won't stand for it.

God Save the Constitution!

Bernardo F. Ronquillo said...

DJB, ang nakakaasar ay hindi iyung kung tutuo na “it is equal opportunity and equality before the law is what matters” bagkus ang katotohanan na ‘THEY DO NOT EXIST.”

Walang habas kung magsalita ang ibang tao. Hindi ko kailanman inatake ang mga kongresistang halal ng mga tao na ngayon ay pro-cha-cha. Hindi ko mapanghihimasukan ang mga paninindigan nila pero ang hindi ko masisikmura ay KUNG PAANO nila tinangkang IRAGASA ito sa batasang pambansa. OVER! SOBRA! NAKAKAHIYA! Ito ang dahilan kung bakit NASUKA sa kanila ang mga tao.

Ako ay MASANG PILIPINO. Hindi ako kabilang sa mga aminadong MATALINO at mga ELITISTA. Ang mga matatalino at elitista ang nagbagsak ke Erap at nagluklok ke Gloria. Ngayon ay biglang bawi sila at gustong si Gloria naman ang ibagsak. Sino ngayon ang TONGO? We saw through Gloria from the beginning but you didn’t know WHAT SHE IS until now that it is too late.

Wala akong pakialam kung anong konstitusyon meron tayo, hindi iyan ang mahalaga. Ang mahalaga ay KUNG TAO ang Pangulong nasa Malacanang. “Hindi na baleng kami ay nakatira sa kubo na ang nakatira ay tao kesa naman sa Palasyo na ang nakatira ay kuwago.”

Alam mo ba ang pagsubok kung sino ke Gloria at Erap ang pinagtitiwalaan ng tao? Huwag kang pumunta sa mga nagsasabing matatalino sila at eletista bagkus duon sa mga kanto-kanto, sulok-sulok, palengke at grupo na mga mahihirap na magdiriwang ng Pasko at banggitin mo ang pangalan ni GLORIA. Sabay ilag, pare ko, baka abutin ka ng ALDABIS MARINO at pulutin ka sa putikan kasama ang kongresista mo!

roger n said...


How can you possible compare elected representatives arguing for a change in the constitution with the whim of an individual that wants to run for president? The analogy just doesnt wash.

You said it best. You are acting as judge and jury when you say you will not stand for it since they "appear" to be serving themselves and their interest. How about those who see an opposite point of view from you? If you are so sure of your position why wont you allow yourself the test of public approval by putting this issue before the elctorate?
Even if I agree with your analysis I would never prevent an airing of both sides and have the populace decide which is best for them.

God Save the Airing of The People's Will!!!!