Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Monday, July 16, 2018
Whether it is the SWS or Pulse survey Filipino observers choose to believe (or not believe), the numbers show that Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte remains immune to the din of shrill sophomoric “criticism” he receives from the Philippine Opposition. This is not surprising seeing the amateurish manner with which this Opposition led by the Liberal Party (a.k.a. the Yellowtards) continue to apply an obsolete style of opposing Duterte. To this day they still use the tired 1980s-vintage narrative populated by prayerful “martyrs”, a nebulous “fight” of some sort, and the legacy of an “authoritarian” bogeyman who allegedly impoverished the Philippines over an era spanning two decades that they call the “Martial Law years” as fodder for their lame opposition.
One need look no further than the current brouhaha over the recent win of boxing-champ-turned-senator Manny Pacquiao. To the addled minds of the Yellowtards, Pacquiao’s victory and the rousing applause he has attracted from his enormous Filipino fan base pretty much assures the Champ’s continued success in Philippine politics. This is because the Philippines is a democracy. In a democracy — especially its Philippine flavour — popularity trumps all other criteria for success hands down. Yet, despite the fact that Filipinos had signed up to this reality, the Yellowtards continue to throw monumental tantrums over positions taken by personalities that they do not like. They fail to recognise that, in the Philippines’ democracy, power does not necessarily go to people who the Yellowtards happen to like.
To the confused mind of a Yellowtard, Pacquiao is both a boxer and a Philippine Senator. They cannot seem to reconcile Pacquiao the Boxer who pulls in millions of spectators to his riveting bouts and Pacquiao the Senator who has won the right to speak his mind before a chamber of his peers. Rather than see Pacquiao as a challenge to step up to and compete against, Yellowtard thought leaders opt for the easy path and simply whine.
What the Yellowtards fail to recognise is that democracy is a competitive environment. “Righteousness” (as they presume to define it) is not entitled to success in a democracy. Only popularity wins. Therefore, the game here is to do what it takes to be popular. Pacquiao is one such textbook case of what it takes to win in a democracy.
The foundation of a strategy to win against the Pacquiaos of Philippine politics whilst remaining consistent to one’s principles (if a party sees the latter as important enough) is to make one’s product appeal to popular sentiment. If, for example, the Yellowtards would like to package “human rights”, “gender equality”, prayerfulness, “freedom”, and “decency” (as they define it) into a campaign platform upon which its candidates could win an election, then they need to make that package appeal to the popular sentiment in a way that could translate directly to votes. On top of that, they will also need a party or coalition leader who possesses the skills and statesmanship to successfully sell that package to the Filipino voter.
Unfortunately for the Opposition, the election winning strategy of the Yellowtards stands on only one leg — negative campaigning. Whilst negative campaigning proved to be effective against the late former President Ferdinand Marcos in the 1980s and, later, in the equally illegal ouster of President Joseph “Erap” Estrada at the turn of the century, it is evidently ineffective today. Yet the Yellowtard-led Opposition continue to stubbornly stick to this obsolete approach to regaining power. Worse, they are using the same obsolete Yellow narrative to underpin this approach. Using obsolete methods to win against a rapidly-evolving enemy is a sure path to Loserville. We can see how comfy the Yellowtards are in this town they’ve made their home — in their choice of “leaders” (at the moment, the prayerful “vice president” Leni Robredo), in the slogans they use in their rallies, their continued virtue signalling using Western philosophies alien to most Filipino voters as input, and in their alliance with a woefully-discredited Roman Catholic clergy.
Whilst the Yellowtards pour enormous amounts of energy and resources into negative campaigning, there is hardly any political capital invested in positive campaigning. The Opposition has yet to present a coherentvision for the Philippines that could serve as a powerful alternative to the popular Duterte Way. Although their old narrative once formed the backbone of a positive campaign that served them well over three decades, it no longer proves to be effective and, therefore, needs to be replaced. The Yellowtards have so far shown a disturbing lack of imagination to do just that. They prefer, instead, the lazy option of continuing to flog their long-dead workhorse. This laziness in thinking and bankruptcy of imagination has cost the broader Opposition dearly. The fact is, the solution to address the continued loss of the Opposition in their campaign against Duterte is obvious: they need to ditch the Yellowtards.
Rather than quibble on the details surrounding the methods used by Pulse, SWS, or any other “survey” firm, the Opposition should, instead, shape up for real battle. That battle is just around the corner. And, by the looks of it, it will be a battle they will likely lose.
Evidence of organised efforts to foment instability (or at least the perception of it) seems to have been mounting in recent weeks. First is the spate of labour “activism” that was accorded substantial media mileage by the Philippines’ Big Corporate Media. Second is a demonisation campaign against China and its citizens which inadvertently is causing collateral damage to the Filipino Chinese community who find themselves caught in the crossfire of ill-thought-out “news” reports.
Most recent is a set of expensive-looking banners unfurled on highly-visible sites apparently along the route to be traversed by busloads of Chinese visitors the other day. The banners display the words “Welcome to the Philippines, Province of China” which can be interpreted in many ways specially taking into account the inconsistent meaning of the English words to the Chinese characters included in these banners.
These are, of course, all on top of the general din of the banal destabilisation campaign being carried on by the Opposition led by the Liberal Party (a.k.a. the Yellowtards) who, for lack of any vision for the Philippines, gavitate down the easy path of quibbling on the trivial and superficial. The “issues” the Yellowtards seem to focus their chatter around don’t extend beyond grammatical and spelling gaffes, the use of generic memes and GIFs on social media as crutches to mask their lack of articulation skills, and making sophomoric “analyses” on the back of unsound logical inferences that are then lapped up by followers who lack critical evaluation skills.
The underlying thing that is notable amidst all this is how the Yellowtards are working closely with elements of the Communist Party of the Philippines in opposing the government of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte. Many of the labour protests covered by Media have a common denominator — they are all supported by the usual suspects: communist-infiltrated “activist” organisations that draw their supply of warm bodies and hollowheaded “idealists” from university campuses across the country. This is evident in the familiar red flags being waved amidst rallying crowds and protest marches, the familiar “US-[insert name of current president here] Dictatorship” slogans being chanted, and the same personalities who have made “careers” out of leading these rallies.
Filipinos should recall that communists have only one mission — the violent overthrow of “reactionary” governments and the establishment of a Dictatorship of the Proletariat. Right there is a modus operandi consistent with the events unfolding today. The alliance between the prayerful Yellowtards (supposedly moderate liberals who are a bit confused by their religious conservativsm) and the atheist communists may seem counterintuitive at first on an ideological level. But this is, after all, the Philippines where loyalties to personalities overwhelmingly trump ideological sensibilities hands down. Thus it is not surprising that the unifying personality in all this is none other than the late Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr who was known to have strong links with Filipino communists and, at the same time, is the founding “martyr” of Yellowtardom.
All this explains why the Yellowtard-led (and, by association, communist-led) Opposition cannot seem to be bothered to offer a vision and prospectus alternative to the Duterte path. It is because they already have a singular motive — to grab power the communist way, through yet another “revolution”. In this light, it is easy to see why no priority had so far been given by the Philippine Opposition to crafting a coherent and legitstrategy to acquire power legally (i.e. by winning an election). They do not even bother to put up a credible andcompetent leader and, instead, have opted for the lame-duck “vice president” Leni Robredo to front up for them.
In this effort to achieve their singular goal of acquiring power for the sake of power, the Yellowtards and their commie allies are not above laying waste to the Philippine economy even as millions of Filipinos work hard to keep it chugging along. They are doing this by inciting labour unrest, undermining investors’ confidence by creating an atmosphere of political instability, creating division rather than unity around practical goals, and encouraging the application of primitive religious thinking rather than modern scientific critical thought. To keep Filipinos ignorant, insecure, and confused is what the Yellowtards and their commie allies really want. And they plan to acquire power on the back of all that.
Sunday, July 15, 2018
Saturday, July 14, 2018
Fourth of a series on the South China Sea dispute*
HURT by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana’s remarks that “President Aquino mismanaged the Philippine sea dispute with China,” former Foreign Secretary Alberto del Rosario blabbered too much in order to hit back.
Middle of the night
Del Rosario immediately ordered, in the middle of the night, the BFAR and Coast Guard vessels to pull out, leaving the Chinese in complete control of the shoal. Aquino would only find out about the pull-out when he woke up – a bit late – the following morning. With our vessels leaving what we claim as our territory, we have lost it – forever, as it were.
Indeed, the Aquino government’s suit against China was not just over the Philippines’ territorial disputes with it but over the superpower’s sweeping claim over the South China Sea, particularly its so-called “nine-dash line.” China asserts in its maps that this crudely sketched tongue-shaped line, even if undefined in terms of geographical coordinates, demarcates its territory in the South China Sea.
* Others in this series:
“Aquino, Del Rosario and media hid the loss of Panatag to China from the nation,” June 25, 2018
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