Monday, May 28, 2012

Penalties

Mukhang kumbinsido ang mga Senador na may ginawang kamalian si CJ Corona sa hindi niya pag declare ng limpak limpak niyang saalapi sa kanyang SALN kasi maski si Senador Miriam parang nakikipag haggle na lang na yung parusa na ibigay sa kanya ay yung hindi pag sipa sa trabaho.  Ayon sa GMA news:

"Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago, for her part, asked whether the Senate can impose a lesser penalty if ever Corona is convicted on the charges made against him.
 
She specifically cited Section 3 (7) of Article XI which says: "Judgment in cases of impeachment shall not extend further than removal from office and disqualification to hold any office under the Republic of the Philippines, but the party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to prosecution, trial, and punishment, according to law."
 
"Thus the Senate can impose a lesser penalty like censure, reprimand, fine, suspension form office or the like. In case of conviction how should the penalty be determined?" she said during the trial."

Impeaching Justices

Maliban kay CJ Corona, may impeachment complaint kay Justice Mariano del Castillo. Inakusahan siya ng plagiarism, kinopya niya sa ibang tao ang mga sinusulat niya sa kanyang mga desisyon.  Kung hindi ma-impeach si CJ Corona sa pag sisinungaling sa kanyang SALN, pano pa ma impeach si Justice del Castillo sa plagiarism?

Friday, May 25, 2012

Ibigay sa Ombudsman

Bakit di na lang ibigay sa Ombudsman yung waiver ni Corona para mas mapadali yung pag dismiss ng kaso.  Kung mali naman pala yung sinasabi ng Ombudsman, mas madali nila itong maitatama kung may waiver sila galing sa kanya.


What was Corona thinking?

May clue sa columnn ni Amando Doronila ngayon.
If Corona had reached his car a minute earlier at the Senate parking lot, the trial would have met the same ignominious fate of then President Joseph Estrada’s own impeachment trial, which triggered the second People Power coup in this country in the first month of the 21st century. This fiasco was not lost in the memory of Enrile, and must have influenced him in determining that he would not allow this event to happen again during his watch as presiding officer of the second impeachment trial in Philippine history.
That failed impeachment trial was sparked by the 11-10 vote of the senator-judges to suppress a second envelope thought to contain evidence of Estrada’s bank transactions. Enrile, then a senator-judge, voted to suppress. The vote provoked the prosecutors led by then Rep. Joker Arroyo to walk out, effectively killing the trial because it could no longer continue without the presence of the prosecutors.
Sa tingin yata ni Corona, sa pag walk-out niya, mapaparalisa ang Senado, hindi matutuloy yung impeachment at hindi makapag render ng desisyon.  Mananatili pa rin siyang Chief Justice.

Gago talaga.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Waiting for Miriam


I am waiting for Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago's outburst against the Chief Justice assailing him for his disrespect of the Senate.  She is eerily silent.

Why Corona should be impeached

From Dean Tony La ViƱa of the Ateneo School of Government article in Rappler

...because he made the assumption that he did not need to declare his dollar assets in his Statements of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth (SALNs) due to bank confidentiality laws. Those laws have a purpose but they were not intended to shield wrongdoing or be an excuse for not doing one’s positive duty as a public official.

Even considering his assertion that he didn’t have the 82 accounts alleged in Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales’ testimony, his 4 accounts should still have been fully disclosed. This admission, in turn, he made worse by making his waiver conditional, thus making it appear like he were trying to deflect attention from himself.

No public official, especially in high office, can make that assumption which Corona claimed. To accept his argument is to negate our laws on the accountability of public officials. For me, the mere failure of the Chief Justice to disclose any of his assets in his SALNs is sufficient grounds for conviction under Article II of the impeachment complaint – not just because it violates the Constitution, but also because his high position demands equally high responsibility.

The Constitution’s intentions were to require public officials to be transparent and accountable by example, not merely on demand or by convenience. It is not about whether a public official’s wealth was ill-gotten or not; it’s not about the presumption of innocence; it is about setting a good example and demonstrating good faith to the Filipino people.

Chief Justice Corona’s assumption that foreign currency accounts should not be disclosed sets a bad example and precedent to all other public officials. His excuse defeats the purpose of the SALN, if some assets can remain undisclosed in the name of privacy. This assumption, this attitude, is arrogant and condescending, at the very least. It also sets one’s self above the law, and demeans the Constitution’s intentions for accountability.

We cannot afford such assumptions and such attitudes – and the men who carry them – in high office. As fellow lawyer Joan de Venecia posted on Facebook: “CJ says he didn't declare his dollars in his SALN because they are, by law, absolutely confidential. I’m sorry, but this is, in my opinion, a disingenuous misreading of the law. That kind of interpretation subverts the very essence of the sacrosanct Constitutional principle that a public office is a public trust.” For this interpretation to come from the Chief Justice of the Philippines is simply unacceptable.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Takot

Natatakot ang mga senador na puedeng gamitin ng ombudsman ang kanyang kapangyarihan na imbestigahan ang mga opisyal ng pamahalaan para gipitin ang mga kalabang politiko ng presidente.  Ang sagot nila dito ay limitahan ang kapangyarihan ng ombudman, hindi nila naisip na mas maganda kung gamitin nila ang kanilang kapangyarihan para ma-tiyak na ang mga magiging ombudsman ay matinong tao na may integridad at katwiran na hindi magpapagamit sa kung sino mang presidente ang mag appoint sa kanya.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

On Gay Equality

I like this quote from Ed Brayton

"As Greg Laden has pointed out, the one thing you can guarantee about every advance in civil rights is that it will not have happened soon enough. We didn't end slavery soon enough; we didn't give women the right to vote soon enough; we didn't end segregation or pass the Civil Rights Act soon enough. It's never soon enough. But in the end, justice and equality always do seem to win. We're gonna win this one too. And regardless of whether it's based on principle or political calculation, Obama's announcement will be seen as a watershed moment a decade from now, just as LBJ's support of the Civil Rights Act was 50 years ago. "

Good Manners and Right Conduct

consistent with his support of censorship of Mideo Cruz's exhibit, Conrado de Quiros now supports the MTRCBs censorship of the Tulfo brothers.  Not because they did anything illegal, but because they did not conduct themselves like good boys:

...the transgression is grave. It has nothing to do with politics, it has to do with ethics. It has nothing to do with opinion, it has to do with decorum. It has nothing to do with partisanship, it has to do with good manners and right conduct. Llamanzares herself says "T3" has been the subject of several complaints in the past. She has asked to meet with the show's producers and hosts, but despite their repeated promises to appear, they have not done so. And now this.

The Tulfo brothers' excuse is that they got carried away in the heat of emotion. After all, it was another brother of theirs who had been at the receiving end of a beating, and they were feeling raw. That is no excuse at all. They had no business being there to comment on it to begin with. They should have taken a temporary leave of absence before they went on a temporary leave of their senses. They knew they had a deeply personal stake in it, they knew they could not possibly be objective about it. That is not a recipe for public service, that is a recipe for public disservice. Since it was unlikely they would have volunteered to inhibit themselves, Channel 5 should have asked them to do so.

I read the transcripts of the brothers' ululations, one challenging Santiago to a fistfight, another warning the couple they had better not meet at the airport or mall or any public place, still another advising the couple to just stay at home and stay healthy. That's not public service, that's private malice. That's not just emotional excess, that is journalistic thuggery. That's not even toughness, that's just weakness. Everyone always finds the witty line after the argument; everyone always finds the balls after the fray.

How was that display of bad manners and wrong conduct any different from what happened to their brother, a group ganging up on him and beating him black and blue? Well, at least the Santiagos merely conscripted their friends to go along with them, or indeed they didn't have to conscript them at all, they volunteered freely and spontaneously. The Tulfos conscripted media to gang up on the couple, or used them to inflict that scale of mayhem. Oh, yes, mayhem. Words, particularly when amplified a million times by the power of TV, break bones as much as sticks and stones.

The point of public service programs is to curb abuse, not heap it. The point of public service programs is to put fear in the hearts of the abusive, not to put fear in the heart of the public. No, the MTRCB's 20-day preventive suspension of "T3" does not threaten freedom of the press, it secures it. I feel more threatened by journalists, broadcast or print, who try to use TV, radio, or newspaper to carry out naked vendetta than a government agency trying to remind them of what their profession calls for. Radio and TV are particularly powerful because of their reach and immediacy. With much power comes much responsibility.

What the the Tulfo brothers said may be as crass as he describes, but that should not merit government censorship,  It's ok for Mr. De Quiros that the Tulfos be censored because he agrees with the MTRCB, unfortunately, that will not always be the case.  And when the MTRCB censors speech that he likes, what will he do?  He already conceded that they have the power to censor those they do not agree with.

That is why we must always defend free speech, because one day, it may be our speech that is silenced.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Kawawang Isko

Sumali si Isko Moreno sa partido ni Erap sa pag-aakala na siya ang susuportahan ni Erap sa pagka Mayor ng Manila tapos biglang tatakbo pala si Erap bilang Mayor.  Bagay, baka mas mabuti naman ito para sa kanya, mag Herbert Bautista siya, hintayin niyang mag 3 terms si Lim saka siya tumakbong Mayor, mas malaki chance niya na manalo.

Perro malaking sugal para kay Erap ang pagtakbong Mayor ng Maynila,  kung hindi siya mananalo, mawawala ang aura niya na paborito ng masa.  Natapos ang electoral career ni Ernesto Maceda ng talunin siya ni Lim sa pagka Mayor ng Maynila,  pagkatapos non, wala ng gusto kumuha sa kanya bilang kandidato.

Baka mas makakabuti pa kung takutin lang ni Erap si Lim na tatakbo siya pero sa huli si Isko na lang din ang suportahan niya.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

Indulgencia

Kagaya nong panahon ni Rizal, puede na naman makarating sa langit ang mga mayayaman ng hindi dumadaan sa purgatoryo.

“Why are we bringing it back?” asked Bishop Nicholas A. DiMarzio of Brooklyn, who has embraced the move. “Because there is sin in the world.”
According to church teaching, even after sinners are absolved in the confessional and say their Our Fathers or Hail Marys as penance, they still face punishment after death, in Purgatory, before they can enter heaven. In exchange for certain prayers, devotions or pilgrimages in special years, a Catholic can receive an indulgence, which reduces or erases that punishment instantly, with no formal ceremony or sacrament.

There are partial indulgences, which reduce purgatorial time by a certain number of days or years, and plenary indulgences, which eliminate all of it, until another sin is committed. You can get one for yourself, or for someone who is dead. You cannot buy one — the church outlawed the sale of indulgences in 1567 — but charitable contributions, combined with other acts, can help you earn one. There is a limit of one plenary indulgence per sinner per day.
Yayaman na naman ang simbahan.