• Bloody hardline drugs policy doomed to fail?


    Repeating the same mistake again and again, expecting different results, is said to be on this side of insanity.

    In boycotting Macoy’s sham electoral exercises, we’d say “Fool me once, shame on you! Fool me twice, shame on me!” Of course in the 1985-86 snap polls, we boycotters joined the “participationists”; we did not boycott and we toiled hard for God, Country and Cory. February 22-26, 1986 saw the ultimate vindication of the Parliament of the Streets at Edsa. Foreign intervention, by Providence.

    Today, we see the bloody hardline policy against drugs. It has failed all over the world, in my view. It won’t succeed here, either, I fear. There’s even a shoot-to-kill one in hiding and may scamper away for dear life, when found; no threat to anyone. Life is cheap. And so is dignity. The related Shame Campaign is another form of Extrajudicial Killing or Robbery, of Name and Dignity. “Who steals my purse steals trash, . . . but he that filches from me my good name, Robs me of that which not enriches him And makes me poor indeed.” Othello, III, iii, 155.

    Now, many Mayors would be shamed, tried and convicted by publicity. Why not just sue them for the sake of due process? Not condemn first, probe later. Fire!Aim!Ready! injustice. Killer convicted? Pardon.

    I associate myself fully with what Dr. John Collins says in his BusinessWorld piece: “Why the Philippines’ New War on Drug Users Will Fail.” He “is the Executive Director of the LSE IDEAS International Policy Project of the London School of Economic and Political Science (LSE).” Aug. 2, 2016, page 6, col. 1. Last Tuesday this was.

    Last Monday, I reconnected with Sheila Coronel and for some reason the name of Ira Sombillo came up. Ira was one of those who helped us build up or support the effort of Bob Swift and Joe Mari Velez to go after the Marcoses in that historic Hawaii class suit. I had known Sheila as a talented writer during the Dark Years and beyond, and she now excels in Columbia U in New York. Ira’s doing well abroad after a rough patch, said Sheila.

    The get-together last Monday was in Fely Aquino-Arroyo’s place in Dasma [where I went after Mass for Prez Cory in Rockwell to mark her 7th death anniversary]; principal guest was Sheila, daughter of Companero/Caballero Tony, and sister of Dr. Miriam Coronel-Ferrer. At some point a birthday cake materialized; it turned out the shindig was partly to mark another birth anniversary of Sheila’s. I didn’t ask her her age, rude, bad form, so suffice it to say that no one among the women, a bundle of talent, looked a day above 30. Waddaya mean credibility matters?

    Anyway, the mention of Ira rang a bell. On reaching home I looked for my what I wrote 26 years ago, entitled:

    “Honolulu Class Suit Primer (Nov. 14, 1992)

    “Q: Who have assisted class action mastermind and lead counsel Bob Swift in this magnificent obsession?

    “A: . . . Rod Domingo (and his son, Michael), Ruben Fruto, Glenda Mendoza, Ira Sombillo, Jane Biscocho and Tony Villasor, have helped at this end (with my Senate staff, such as Cyril del Callar, liaising with Malacañang and the PCGG when I was still in government). When Joe Mari passed on last year, I decided to be more active in the case.” [When I attended one Honolulu hearing, the jury awarded $1.2-B as one form of damages. I fell off my chair.]

    I assume Ira is with us in opposing the transfer of Macoy’s remains to the Libingan ng Mga Bayani (LMB), a commitment of Prez Digong which saddens those of us who fought the Dictator. How a known world-class kleptocrat and gross human rights violator can be among Bayanis could make us the world’s laughingstock. Even my proposal to rename the place Libingan ng Mga Bayani at Mga Pangulo is encountering resistance. Not Even Libingan ng mga Bayani At Iba Pa would do?

    My late-father-in-law, who I never met, is in the LMB. In 1998, when Erap said Macoy’s remains would be moved there, my wife, Dulce, also gone, went on national radio-TV and said she would ask her nuke family to move her father’s remains out of the LMB. Given the widespread opposition, Erap prudently backed off. When FVR allowed the remains to be brought back from Hawaii, in 1993, he set as conditions that the body would be flown directly to the Ilocos and that it would be buried immediately. Not complied with; for some reason, I think Macoy’s headstone should read: HERE A LAWYER LIES STILL.

    The timing is particularly off, cruel and unkind. Here is government currently evaluating and processing 75,000 human rights claims to be paid out of the billions the Marcoses stole. How I wish Bongbong would say “I had nothing to do with the alleged ill-gotten wealth and gross human rights violations but I am sorry if these regrettably happened. For national reconciliation, we’re sorry; the family is donating X for the medical and burial expenses of certain victims and the education of certain descendants.”

    Imee occasioned the death of Archimedes Trajano in 1977 when he asked a question in a Mapua open forum that didn’t amuse her. Imelda, the death of 169 workers on November 17, 1981, when she rushed the construction of the Film Palace, round-the-clock, and a scaffolding collapsed and quick-drying cement buried alive the victims.

    One remark you might hear from supporters of Bongbong, says Raissa Robles, is that we shouldn’t blame the son for the sins of the father. He called human rights victims “greedy” in 1999. He said they were squabbling among themselves because: “Basta’t may pag-asang magkapera, nagaaway-away na sila. (As long as there’s a chance of making money, they’ll fight among themselves),” Bongbong told Raissa in a public forum held by the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines (FOCAP), just before the 25th anniversary of Edsa’86. She had a gripping account on “the criminal origin” of the Swiss loot that will fund the awards to the rightful human rights claimants under R.A. No. 10368. Cum an account of Bongbong’s role in the criminal enterprise, in 1986.

    On July 15, 2003, our Supreme Court (SC) ordered the forfeiture of the ill-gotten wealth. Criminal origin. Ill-gotten wealth. Billions. Done. Yet the SC did not order the prosecution of anyone. Raissa wrote that when the Marcoses fled from Malacañang, their loot hidden worldwide was estimated to run up to US$10 billion. Crime paid.

    Now, a pal of BB is Prez.

    Quo vadis, Mr. Prez?


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    1. The right way of solving a crime should still be within the due process of law. That’s why many learned people say that this will never work because those killed were denied due process. The law of God and the law of man separate us from animals who preys on the weaker form by instinct. We have law and thus, order. Everything must be according to law, otherwise there will be anarchy.

      • Was it DUE PROCESS OF LAW that was applied in the case of Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who was arrested and confined for almost 4 years then set free by the Supreme Court as the prosecutor was unable to prove her guilt. Was it Right and Just? Just asking, as I am not a lawyer.

    2. Why do we have to even listen to that LSE Exec Director who hasn’t even thoroughly studied the drug problem in the Philippines? Note though that I fully subscribed to your article’s first sentence: we voted an Aquino to the presidency in 1986, and another in 2010, and we were indeed insane to expect different results, coz they are both FAILURES!

    3. Move on Move on din pag may time. 2016 na po! puro ka pa din Macoy, Cory Edsa Revolution, kumpadre, dark years! Ano ba naman. WALA naman yan matutulong sa problema ng Pilipinas sa Droga, ngayon lang tyo nakakakita ng libo-libong drug dependents na sumusuko, mga mayor at heneral na nabubunyag ang mga maling Gawain. Kung idadaan yan sa due process mo panigurado wlang manyayari dahil dismiss lagi ang kaso due to technicality or due to lack of evidence kahit pa caught in the act na. KASE NGA BAYAD LAHAT AT NABIBILI ANG HUSTISYA DITO SA ATIN! GETS MO! Kayong mga writers at dating politico ang gagaling nyo manita pero nung kayo naka pwesto may nagawa ba kyo? Galing nyo e, bakit di kayo nag president?

    4. Puro ka dakdak Rene, wala ka naming maibigay na solusyon. ANO ba nagawa mo at naitulong? Puro kwentong barbero lang naman lagi ang write ups mo. Panay throwback lang, kwentong pang lolo. ( Repeating the same old stories again and again, expecting different results, is said to be on this side of insanity)

    5. Aphetsky Lasa on

      President Duterte wants the death penalty be restored. But his critics are against it. Their reason is that death penalty cannot prevent people from committing heinous crimes. Why was the death penalty a failure before? Because it was not implemented. .

      And now here comes the war on drugs. if more than 100.000 surrenderees, a number of arrests including local officials and top generals believed to be drug lords, the big fish, they say, several drug related deaths resulting from resisting arrest, is a sign of failure to the “bloody hardline policy against drugs,” then I don’t know what will it take to succeed.. Considering that it’s been just a month into President Digong’s Presidency all these took place is a clear sign that his war on drugs is working.

      You cannot compare President Digong’s way of fighting drugs. He is a no-nonsense President. He means what he says. And he is not beholden to anyone, so he can do whatever it takes to get rid our country of illegal drugs.

      Why are you. Mr Saguisag, opposed to restoring peace and order to our country?

    6. I’m glad Marcos was smart enough to take that $10 Billion out of the country for safe-keeping instead of stupidly leaving it to be plundered by the filthy leftist yellowistas of Aquino-Co-Hwang-Co.!

      When BB Macoy is declared VP by SC, Du30 will team up with BFF BB to make the country great again. Bong(x2) realized cheap energy as the solution to peoples poverty ever since he spent the PROTECTED NATIONAL FUNDS (not hidden wealth) for his genius pilot project Bangui wind farm.

      But wait there’s more, when a Filipino Marcos returns to power the Bataan Nuclear power plant will be restarted, and the communist Tai-pans of the Aquino-Co-Hwang-Co (only the evil ones), will be banished to Red China their mother country.

    7. ” Imelda, the death of 169 workers on November 17, 1981, when she rushed the construction of the Film Palace, round-the-clock, and a scaffolding collapsed and quick-drying cement buried alive the victims.”

      I used to believe that story. But now i discerned, it was just a scaffolding that collapsed. it would not have buried the construction workers deep that their bodies could not have been dug up easily by the rescuers.

      • So sorry that you are so misinformed, the people who were buried at the film palace were not dug out because the opening was less than 48 hours away. Its not that they could not pull them out anymore but because pulling them out would have delayed the opening of Imelda’s project. Thus, they poured concrete over them and that became their tomb. Those are the undisputed facts.

      • The cement dried up fast so the body can not be pulled anymore. To do so would just dismember them and you would just be having arms or legs or head sans the body – or the body is pulled out with the head still entombed inside the hardened cement. Given that qsituation, what would the former senator have done? If you pull the head, fresh blood may still flow.

        Just being grossly mistaken with the figures of USD10B already makes the claimant writer not knowing that she does not know. The asset is far more than that and it runs to trillions – and one can not steal something which does not exist in Philippine coffers at that time. While all major banks know the assets, the assets are not in the system so they do not exist. Hence, they have to invent an anti-money laundering regime to prevent the asset from entering our financial system.

      • So you and all the yellowista fiction writers speculate that FL Imeldific gave instructions to pour cement over live workers? It does cast her in an image worst than Caligula.

        Now to ask which gov’t minister was it that had the guts to approach Imelda or Macoy…asking do we bury or not bury Boss? So incur there ire by ruining their moods for the entire historic world beauty event.

        In fact those in charge hushed everything up so that when her Imeldific majesty inquired … and how is everything going? Splendid Madam, a little spill but we are on schedule. FL: fine work you and your men will have extra bonus as we discussed… The Madam’s generosity in gift giving is a historic fact.

        But they were made aware of the tragedy long after the fact.

    8. How about the loot of your friend the Aquino’s and Cojuangcos and the oligarchs that benefits from your fake revolution EDSA, you hypocrite.

    9. Gaspar Lopez on

      Saguisag was a respected lawyer and human rights advocate during his Mabini time.I do not know what the Cojuangcos and Aquinos fed him as I noted that he has become an apologist for the yellowtards and a trying hard to be funny columnist talking non-sense. Unlike the very well respected Joker and Teddy L who maintained their sanity and independence, not a rabid Aquino defender who, at all cost, even if it meant loss of credibility and sintido common, act like a “has been” and ulyanin. The latter is excusable because it is a state of mind which was caused by the crash that resulted in Dulce’s death. Be that as it may, he is no longer the Rene that we have known before, and let us just treat him as ulyanin and a “has been” who could not grasp reality. May I suggest that he limit his activities in the dance hall at Magallanes, at least only a few could notice his loss of sanity and legal ability.

      • “Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain – and most fools do.”
        Benjamin Franklin

        “Anyone can negatively criticize – it is the cheapest of all comment because it requires not a modicum of the effort that suggestion requires.”
        Chuck Jones

        “He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help.”
        Abraham Lincoln

    10. Today, we see the bloody hardline policy against drugs. It has failed all over the world, in my view. It won’t succeed here, either, I fear. There’s even a shoot-to-kill one in hiding and may scamper away for dear life, when found; no threat to anyone. Life is cheap. And so is dignity. The related Shame Campaign is another form of Extrajudicial Killing or Robbery, of Name and Dignity.
      —Who told you that there is dignity of drug pushers and drug addicts?
      —They might have a life and name but dignity?
      —One pusher can kill and destroy numerous lives in the process, lets say he peddles drugs his entire life, how many families will he destroy, how many lives vanished because of him. A drug dependent according to PRRD will never be the same again. If you are not in favor of eliminating this drug peddlers, who are also drug addicts, can you make a better solution? Imagine the 70k pushers who admitted that they peddle shabu? Of course we need not kill them because they surrendered, but give credit to whom is due. never in the history of the world that 500k drug addicts and drug pushers surrender in so short a period of time.
      — I admire you because you are one, if not the best lawyer our country has ever produce, but please contribute your knowledge to stopped the drug menace. Do not just sit there and criticized someone who has the guts to face the powerful drug lords.

    11. I respect the right of everybody to give their comments against the way President Rodrigo R. Duterte solve the drug problem in our Country … but may I ask , if you do not mind , Mr Rene Saguisag … WHAT IS YOUR WAY OF SOLVING THE PROBLEM ?

      • I also believe that people who were once given the chance to do something good for this country BUT FAILED TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE ought to just shut up. The likes of Tatad, Enrile, Ramos and this Ballroom Dancing Rene Saguisag.

        YOU WERE A FAILURE AND NO BRIGHT LEGACY TO BE PROUD OF so you have no more right to criticize another’s work.