An open letter to Reynaldo Santos, Jr., ‘author” of the libelous Rappler article.
DEAR Rey, I am reaching out to you through my column as I have been unable to communicate with you through your email and Facebook page, both of which seem to have been inactivated and I wouldn’t know what office to contact at the Araneta City where you currently work.
IT is quite despicable that Maria Ressa and her Yellow crowd have been shouting to the world that her criminal conviction for libel for a Rappler article was suppression of the press. It is infinitely disgusting that they have claimed that President Duterte is behind it and that the Philippines has degenerated into a country where freedom of the press no longer exists.
I have never seen such hypocrisy on such a scale.
If there is any president involved in this issue, it is former president Benigno Aquino 3rd, whose Yellow Cult to this day has been a fan and, I strongly suspect, even a financier of Rappler.
That Rappler article, which was ruled criminally libelous by Regional Trial Court Judge Rainelda Estasio-Montesa the other day, was part of the most odious, immoral and depraved political campaigns in our history.
This was Aquino‘s assault on the Supreme Court in 2012 that removed then-Chief Justice Renato Corona and replaced him with Maria Lourdes Sereno, the most unqualified chief justice ever but the most servile to the president and the Yellows.
Aquino mistakenly thought that with Corona’s removal, the court would reverse its ruling on the fate of his clan’s Hacienda Luisita, and that would give it P2 billion more in agrarian-reform compensation.
In Memoriam: Perfecto R. Yasay Jr. (Jan. 27, 1947 – June 12, 2020)
First of 2 parts
WE have such short memories, and only a few will remember that Perfecto “Jun” Yasay Jr., President Rodrigo Duterte’s first Foreign Affairs secretary, audaciously tried to block the Indonesian tycoon Anthoni Salim’s 1998 takeover of the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT), which violated the constitutional ban on foreigners controlling a utility firm.
Jun passed away on June 12. Our deepest condolences to his wife Cecile and his family. He was a bold man of integrity.
Jun would have been saddened by the turn of events: even with the ignoble fall in 2001 of President Joseph Estrada, who helped that takeover, Salim’s First Pacific group, using PLDT as its base, expanded to become the country’s biggest telecommunications and infrastructure conglomerate, its foreign ownership de facto camouflaged by the high profile of the Indonesian’s top executive Manuel V. Pangilinan. Foreign money in ABS-CBN Corp. is loose change compared to that of PLDT and the Salim conglomerate: their Hong Kong-based holding firm has received a least $1 billion in profits remitted from the Philippines since 1998. Such is the enormous power of corporate lawyers in our country.
THE Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020, a brainchild of Sen. Panfilo Lacson, hardly a supporter of President Rodrigo Duterte, will at long last give the republic the legal weapon to decisively and quickly defeat Jose Maria Sison’s Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and its private army, the New People’s Army (NPA). The CPP has mobilized all its fronts and the usual bleeding-heart, flaky-minded liberal ideologues to oppose the proposed law, with the usual tiring cliché of “it could be abused.”
C’mon, this is a nation with “human rights” and “due process” up to its ears, and we have lawyers practicing lucrative, corporate law with one hand and defending the CPP and Sison with the other. In its 51 years of existence, the communists have really proven to be incompetent militarily, but experts in the manipulation of our rule of law and democratic system.
We are the now the only country in Southeast Asia with an armed insurgency and a legislature with seven communist cadres as “representatives,” with each contributing to the growth of the other. Do you seriously believe that Red congressmen like Carlos Zarate and Ariel Casilao would have won seats if not for their communists’ mass base and fear of the NPA?
THE Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) has extracted P1.9 billion from private companies, the bulk of it from the country’s telecommunication (telco) firms, which explains to a large extent the survival of this armed insurgency.
The data was retrieved from memory flash drives found in the quarters of party Chairman Julius Giron — known in inner party circles as Ka Nars — who was killed last March 13 in a Baguio suburb, allegedly by a military intelligence unit supported by local police.
According to the data, “telecom” gave P1.4 billion to the CPP out of the P1.9 billion total from companies described as from the transport, manufacturing, tobacco and power industries, as well as from candidates for elective posts (“one-time deals”).
JULIUS Giron, the Communist Party of the Philippines’ fourth chairman in its 51 years of trying to overthrow by force the country’s democratic system, was killed March 13 in Baguio City, allegedly in a firefight with a team of military intelligence and police operatives.
That Giron, known in party inner circles as “KaNars,” was the CPP chairman and head of its New People’s Army (NPA) had been kept secret both by the Philippine military and the party; the former for some undisclosed reason while the latter hasn’t done so as its leadership has been in disarray. Members of the central committee have abandoned their safehouses, fearing that these may have been revealed in Giron’s computer files. They have been unable to meet or even communicate with each other; thus, there is no unit with the authority to announce its chairman has been killed.
Three months after Giron’s death, the CPP has been unable to designate even an acting chairman. There is no other obvious party leader with the stature to assume the post. This actually reflects the grave crisis in the party’s leadership, which is aging without a new younger core. In the 1970s, it was a party of angry young men with most of its central committee in their 20s or early 30s — founder Jose Maria Sison was just 31 then.
THE claim that the dictator Marcos’ Masagana 99 (M-99) program was a total failure is an excellent example of the Yellows’ invented, Manichaean narrative of that era — that it was the country’s Dark Age, that absolutely nothing good came out of it.
The M-99 program was actually a desperate, do-or-die move for Marcos, who assumed one- man-rule just months before the program was launched.
The typhoons and floods in the early 1970s (among the most destructive that hit the country), the tungro virus infestation (the equivalent to rice of the current coronavirus), drought and the fall in global rice production threatened a rice crisis that would have required massive, expensive importations of rice. That risked a balance of payments crisis because the surge in crude oil costs starting in 1970 had bled our foreign exchange resources.
THE riots in American cities in the past few days, in outrage over the brutal execution by policemen of a 46-year-old African-American, George Floyd — even as he was begging for his life and crying “Momma, Momma” in his last moments — have unraveled one of our era’s biggest deceptions, which has held millions of Filipinos in thrall: America as the land of milk and honey and as the greatest democracy in the world.
Not a few Filipino America-lovers were quick to post in social media photos of Hong Kong youth taunting the police. How many of these have re-posted that terrible video of a Minneapolis policeman pressing his knee into Floyd until he snuffed out his life?
To be frank, one of the things that gets my goat has been the phenomenon of Filipinos, even supposedly our top journalists and intellectuals, who have abandoned their country, got comfortable jobs in New York from which they paint our country as a backward one where human rights aren’t respected. Why haven’t they been using their journalistic skills in exposing the deep injustices in the US of A they so much love, rather than picking on the country they abandoned?
With ABS-CBN Corp.’s closure, the republic — its executive and legislative branches, to be joined soon by the judicial branch, I would bet — will be hitting two birds with one stone.
First, it will disarm of its most potent weapon, the Lopez oligarch clan, which has been a kingmaker of presidents, incurred massive debts from government financial institutions, and influenced government policies and actions for their benefit throughout our nation’s modern history.
LAST Monday, I devoted my column to a slightly edited version of a May 20 report by a team of eight University of the Philippines professors evaluating the government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
I am using my column today to publish their recommendations to continue government’s success in combating the pandemic, which I hope our policy makers will consider when and if they decide to lift the lockdowns next week for most of the country.