Monthly Archives: February 2008

The Sound Of Silence

Yes, it would be a good topic –Positive Mindset and  Corruption in Politics. Hower, I suggest to do it on another occasion for what interests me now is this deafening sound of silence in  barangay Fabrica and Aquino. Well, what has happened to them? A sudden silence after all those noises ? Many would see it as  a sign of retreat and defeat. Or are they merely making use of their legal right to silence? Let’s be positive.

  •  In any case, silence is an interesting subject. Silence in between musical notes for instance is what makes music possible. Let’s practise positive mindset and guess that maybe they are just composing a New Symphony of Truth for the Barangay Aquino Symphony Orchestra under their famous First-gentle conductor. If so, then they rightly need such a creative period of silence. To compose an avantgardistic twelve-tone piece colored with rich dissonance and harmonic twists is no easy task, requires hours of concentrated work behind closed doors.
  • Or it could be that they are just reflecting on a sad event that occurred to them. In this way, we give them enough space and respect while they commemorate something in silence.We need not always to be stern to our own people, especially to our leaders.
  • TagaBulans are Christians and in Christianity silence like during meditative prayer is a common practice and is said to have a nourishing effect on our spirit, like during those holy retreats that we know where we islolate ouselves and do nothing but pray and  confess all our sins and transgressions and vow to ourselves a pious way of living thereafter.So let’s just assume that our dear leaders have chosen this moment of silence as they try to reach the divine in their innermost being in their quest for spiritual enlightenment so they may continue with their Christ-centered leadership and devotion to the poor in Bulan the day when they go back to work again. I ask you then dear town-mates to respect this sound of silence, do not disturb and avoid making unnecessary noise.  
  •  It’s indeed very beneficial to have a positive mindset for this help us to interpret things soundly, keeps our paranoia  away and prevents us from pathologising little things happening in Bulan. I for one love the silence that surrounds me when I write in late hours. In Bulan I loved those moments of silent full-moon nights when I used to sit outside   on a bench or on the wall of PTA Elementary school with the guitar in hand. Of course I can’t help but associate these moments with the great song of the great dou Simon and Garfunkel– the Sound Of Silence– the first stanza of which I now quote:

         “Hello darkness, my old friend,
           I’ve come to talk with you again,
          Because a vision softly creeping,
          Left its seeds while I was sleeping,
          And the vision that was planted in my brain
          Still remains
          Within the sound of silence.”

 Very fitting to our theme, isn’t it? I really enjoyed playing and improvising on this song during my high-school  years in Bulan. Thirty years had passed and my style of guitar playing has changed a lot since then. But this song has remained the same. Like you, the vision that is planted in my brain still remains- to see a brighter Bulan  (within the sound of silence?)

jun asuncion

 Bulan Observer

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Stop It Now! – or the strength of the barangay

The word is derived from balangay, the name for the sailboats that originally brought settlers of Malay stock to the Philippines from Borneo, each boat carrying  a large family group, and the  datu  being the leader. As we know, it is the smallest local government in our country, the grassroots of our political organization, codified under the  Local Government Code 1991.

Throughout the country there exist about 42,000 barangays. Bulan alone is  composed of 63 barangays. Now what’s the importance of this little statistical data? Well, very big! Following our bottom-up approach in  realizing socio-political change in the Philippines (see The New Filipino ), the barangay is our point of departure in bringing about a realistic qualitative change in our politics, particulary Bulan politics. We always seem to ignore the fact that a barangay is a government unit in our country, in our town. It is the oldest political unit, it’s the base that supports and makes possible the municipal government. This is the key to change for each one has an easy access to it, to the punong barangay (barangay captain ) and to the seven barangay Kagawad (barangay councils) in comparison to the Municipal Government whose mayor  probably cannot be reached any time. But your barangay captain is accessible almost all the time, in fact, he may be your neighbor. A friendly gestalt who is willing to listen to your concerns as you walk with him by the fields or as you sweep your backyard in the afternoons. You cannot get this kind of intimacy with your mayor for one thing maybe he or she cannot walk around without a handful of bodyguards.

The barangay captain is a man next-door. We must forget for awhile the municipal mayor and concentrate on giving importance to the barangay officers, be ready to offer your help to them anytime. Give recognition to their work , give them your suggestions to the problems of the barangay. You may not realize it but in this setting it is almost direct democracy in action. Think of the small barrio meetings being held from time to time where people can voice out their opinions to matters that concern them and sometimes arriving at a speedy agreement or solution. The barangay should be strengthened nowadays  in Bulan if the people want a solid anchor to a government that  represents and serves them. If the barangays are united for the good of all, then you have a town that is strong and proud and is able to direct its course.You know, all these problems of corruption and abuses take place only when the government is not rooted in  people’s heart and soul and when the people are “broken-hearted” among themselves.

  Eleanor Roosevelt rightly remarked “Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent” or as we used to say “It takes two to tango”. When you dance to a music you don’t like, this means you cannot say no. People of Bulan suffer then because they just dance along with the music which is not their music. How about if you would  gather your strength and say “Stop it, I want my music now!”? 

This is the moment we are all waiting for when all the barangays would come together and would say “Stop it now!“. This would herald a new chapter in Bulan’s history and usher the birth of a new Bulan that shines. Ideally, politicians should start from this grassroots level before they should become councillors or chief executive. But this is a process that requires more time for the people to fully understand and integrate in their political thinking and put into practice. For we have seen that a person that is just placed to the top by virtue of wealth and connections is not the solution to the problems of Bulan but rather an additional burden to the town. The hero should come from below, not from above, from Bulan and not from somewhere else.

We should not forget that it was the vision of the the prime author of this Local Government Code 1991-Senator Pimentel -to establish strong self-reliant barangays all over the country. According to him,the barangay officials are the front-liners of the Philippine Government, with the punong barangay as the “face” of the  Philippine Government as far as his constituents are concerned, and that the barangay is the key to national development. Behind this is his concept of decentralization of power  with the final aim of establishing a federal form of government for the Philippines. I also think that Federation holds the key to the progress of the whole nation for it activates self-reliance  and diminishes dependency to the national government which since ages operates on the system of political patronage which in turn hinders fair and equal distribution of national wealth and fosters corruption. 

At this point it is also of crucial importance to maintain the Kabataang Barangay for therein is the seed of  future local  government that is firmly rooted in the traditions of Bulan. Leaders who identify totally with the people think and act for the people and share respect and common visions with one another. There is trust, and trust is a vehicle for progress. In my case for example, I trust that our Justice Department is in good hands for the  incumbent Municipal judge also started with the Kabataang Barangay. The youth begins to perceive and appreciate their own town the moment they involve themselves in the Kabataang Barangay. Here they learn the rudiments of political interaction and begin developing their visions for their town. The survival of culture resides in the visions of the youth. It is of utmost importance then that we  have to motivate the Kabataan– the  Youth- from all corners of Bulan to participate in political process in order to put an end to the political passivity that lingers in Bulan and hinders progress. The German Literature Nobel laureate Heinrich Böll commented that the wealth of the society can be seen in the contents of their trash cans. I may remark also that the strength of the community is seen in the contents of the heads of the people, the grassroots, i.e., on how opinionated the people are. Go and ask anyone in  the market of what they think  about their mayor or about Bulan as a whole.  The strength of their arguments reflect the strength of Bulan.

jun asuncion

Bulan Observer

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Response To Timothy- or The Pillar Of Truth

 

It was the result of my observations that led me to question the role of Roman Catholic Church in nation building, recognizing the fact that Religion and the Church plays a crucial factor in character building of the individual. But why then is a society that is composed of such Roman Catholic -raised and Roman Catholic- educated people is susceptible to moral corruption as expressed in their daily business with one another and most obviously in their political affairs which begins from the national down to the local government officials and extends down the line of traffic policemen. Of course there are still some honest public servants, but they are little exceptions to the rule.The fact is Corruption -and not Religion- has long been accepted as a way of life in the Philippines (and in other Roman Catholic nations as well) since the coming of the Spaniards. Is this but a reflection of the inherited corrupt nature and tradition of the Roman Catholic Church that infiltrated the collective  unconscious (C.G.Jung) and psyche of the Filipino (and of other catholic nationalities ) after centuries of Roman Catholic dominion? Take note that here I’m talking about the man-made institution (Government?) of the Roman Catholic Church, and not the Religion of Christianity as founded by Christ himself.

Observing that many other Roman Catholic nations are also very corrupt like the Philippines has led me to conclude that Catholicism has failed to be a tool for building a better society. I do not accuse but merely reflect back the facts observed and the documented records of the Roman Catholic Church herself. Then, what is a supposedly grandiose and forcefully imposed foreign church worth for if it had no function in the society it had willingly conquered? Is it just there to gather the flock every Sunday, collect money from the “Faithful” and send it to the Bishop of Rome? In any case, there is just this missing factor in the Roman Catholic culture and system of education which hinders the individual to transfer positively the Christian teachings he learned in his interaction withthe society, particularly the way that he handles the public office entrusted to him if he is a public servant. Or is the Roman Catholic Church nothing but an edifice of corruption and therefore do not possess the moral authority, hence ineffective, in preaching the pure gospel of Jesus Christ which is characterised mainly by love of God and His Commandments (Thou Shall Not Steal, Though Shall Not Kill…) and love and compassion for fellow men and all creations?

In my studies I came to realize that Christianity was shamelessly corrupted and politicized the day when the Roman Emperor Constantin 1 showed interest in Christianity through the Edict of Milan in 313 which now treated nicely the long time persecuted Christian communities and his calling to life the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD which decreed which books must be or must not be included in the Bible and the adoption of Catholic Christianity as official state Religion of the Roman Empire in 380 by Emperor Theodosius I in Thessalonica. The Edict of Milan which ended the persecution of the early Christians would not testify to the genuine personal appreciation of Constantin of Christianity for he himself remained worshipping the Deus Sol Invictus-the Unconquered  Sun God-and continued his working on the falsifications of Christian religious history, allowing himself only be converted to Christianity through Ambrose just moments before his death. It was rather clear from the outset that everything was a politically-motivated move of these emperors who realized the unifying potential of the growing Christian population at a time when the pagan Roman Empire was declining (The crisis of the 3rd Century in the history of the Roman Empire) and from this date on, the corruption of Christ’s teachings started, beginning with the incorporation into it of many pagan practices of ancient Rome, to the horrible abuses of perverse Popes acting in the name of Christ, the series of Roman Catholic Church-led Crusades, notably the 35- year crusade against the Cathars beginning in 1209 that killed thousands of people, the permanent institution of Inquisition in the 12th Century (Malleus Maleficarum- The Hammer Of Witches !) that led to the burning of heretics (people holding a different opinion ) at the stake (remember Savonarola?), persecution of scientists including Galileo, and finally the confiscation of the properties of these accused and/or murdered people. This gruesome burning and crusades lasted for 475 years, the last woman in Europe to be executed on suspicion of witchcraft was Anna Göldi, in Glarus, Switzerland in 1782 who was finally rehabilitated last year by Glarus local authorities.

  • With this background of brutal corruption and the failure of Roman Catholic educators to recognize this cruel past of the Roman Catholic Church, no sane man could expect that Roman Catholicism is the answer to the quest for Truth (” no matter how the Roman Catholic Church of today presents the “sweetness and light” that Roman Catholic Christianity brought to the world”) and therefore could contribute to Filipino progress, morally and politically. There is danger in denying history. You surely know George Santayana’s warning with respect to this.
  • The founding of schools and hospitals was no way a sign of progress for the Spaniards who came in 1521 and founded them came not really to introduce the real Christianity but they came to introduce and to represent the corrupted version of Christianity (which actually became a form of government known us Theocracy, with the Pope as the absolute authority ) dating back 325 ( and not the Christianity before this date as taught by Christ himself, his Apostles, the Apostolic Fathers and the ante-Nicene Church fathers i.e.,before the council of Nicaea, who, though defending (Apologia) the Christian faithfrom false doctrine, were still dedicated in transmitting the gospel in its true and pure form, in contrast to the post-Nicene Church Fathers who were now just interested in the writings of Articles of Faith( or better, Constitution Of Faith?) and Theology (the most famous being Augustine), all of which were geared at cementing the power and authority of the pope ( a title of pagan and pre-christian origin itself ) and the church of Rome and its pagan-soaked catholic rituals. One such man-made Article of Faith is the Doctrine of Infallibility which was decreed by the Vatican Council (Vatican Senate ? ) in 1870.
  • The Spanish Conquestadores who, in 1521, came, saw and conquered the Philippine islands, allegedly to “Spread Christianity”, came in fact to spread Terrorism, for they were no doubt acting in the spirit of Inquisition, echoing the notorious Spanish Inquisition at the end of the 15th century under Ferdinand and Isabel. Thus they came to conquer, to kill and enslave the natives and to sequester the whole of Philippine Archipelago.
  • Timothy, Progress is not measured in terms of roads, schools, hospitals and bridges built but in the upgrading of the moral and political consciousness of the Filipino people. Were colonisation, oppression, aggression, murders, suppression of truth, slavery, pillage and denials part of the teachings of Christ himself, and were they conducive to socio-economic and moral upgrading of the Filipinos during this entire Spanish occupation which lasted for almost 400 years? Surely not.
  • Was the public execution by firing squad of the then strongest intellectual critic Dr. Jose Rizal in 1896 not enough to show the intention of the Roman Catholic Church in preventing the Filipinos from developing and, above all, from using their own intellect? I declare once again that the message was clear. During this occupation time, the Spanish civil government and the Roman Catholic Church were one and the same in their intention, though the Catholic friars were much more feared by the Filipinos (Indios, according to them) than the Spanish civil authorities.
    The inability of the Catholics to pray a spontaneous original prayer is not the failure of the individual Catholic but a symptom of the authoritative, truth-denying and dogmatic system of teaching of the Roman Catholic Church (only the Catholic clergy, and not a lay Catholic, is allowed to interpret the Bible to prevent “misinterpretation” ) which does not take pleasure in the development of individuality but in the passive submission of the flock, which is understandable in light of the undisputed Roman Catholic history of persecuting heretics, meaning people who use the brain given to them by God and who think in the opposite direction.
  • The 1 Tim 3:15 was referring to Jesus Christ’s Church as the Pillar Of Truth, not to the Roman Catholic Church that for a long time in its history were presided and represented by indecent people, impostors and murderers, people not worthy an inch of Christianity. If you look back to the old written pages (profile?) of this Church, you cannot help but shudder and admit that it is built neither upon Jesus Christ nor Simon Peter the Rock but that it is built upon the rock of Gotteslästerung-of Blasphemy- itself.
  • Your statement that “the fact that most of the lawyers, teachers, doctors and nurses (priests, engineers and psychologists as well? ) are Catholic clearly refutes the idea that the (Roman ) Catholic Church prevents developing and using your intellect”.
  • Well, the mind is the only thing that cannot be caged  even if threatened with crucifixion as what the Romans did to Christ in Golgotha or to Simon Peter in Rome, the beheading of Paul (also in Rome) or the immersing of an Apostle named John in boiling oil, or the beheading of  that poor Swiss woman Ana Göldi. And besides the Roman Catholic Church has nothing against teachers and nurses as long as they don’t question the foundation of the Roman Catholic Church, its dogmas and canons, the Infallibility of the Bishop of Rome and naturally its gruesome medieval history. This is the truth Timothy that you are tasked to protect- and I hope you’re enjoying it.
  • Now, to your last statements “we’ve already established that there is no fact, but just a common myth, an urban legend”,  and “Hopefully, you are open to the truth which is far different.”
  •  Here, you sounded like those typical Catholic religion teachers who were so dogmatic and not open to the truth which is far different by not allowing us to study the Bible (I haven’t seen one in the classroom) but instead devoted their time in teaching us the Articles of Faith of the Roman Catholic Church authored by Vatican Senate (not by Chirst or Simon Peter), and by not mentioning a word about the history (and secrets) of the Holy Roman Catholic Church. Ignorance of History, or were they victim themselves of such method of instruction? You know you cannot defeat facts with philosophical syllogisms alone, a subject you surely love so much, for you need this tool in speaking in defense of (Apologia) the Holy Roman Catholic Church- and you will have more such occasions that will keep you busy for the rest of your life in view of the Roman Catholic scandals now coming more and more to light. You can continue on arriving at a beautiful logical proposition  after inferring from two premises, or throw up Bible verses here and there to make your point. But the fact that Roman Catholic nations are mostly corrupt-like the Philippines or Italy or, for this matter, the Vatican City itself, remains simply a fact, only it is not beautiful. The Truth is simply there to be seen , there is nothing to hide.

In Christ Alone,

jun asuncion

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Wanted: World Mayor 2008

Bulan Observer congratulates Lady Mayor Marides Fernando of Marikina City for being chosen one of the 50 Finalists for the World Mayor award 2008 out of the original  820 recommended candidates from all over the world. From these 50 Finalists, the World Mayor project, organized by City Mayors- an international network of professionals working together to promote strong and prosperous cities as well as good local government-  will pick up the World Mayor 2008 depending on his or her votes and the voters’ strength of arguments as to why they vote their candidates. Voting is going on on-line. If you want to vote, visit  the link  to the World Mayor Website on the Blogroll  at your  right side. 

Mayor Marides Fernando is good news for us Taga-Bulans and Filipinos for this proves to us that the plague of corruption that has befallen the entire archipelago, including Bulan, has no chance against an educated, morally upright and noble personality like Marides Fernando. I’ve studied her profile and her achievements ( and that of her husband, the ex-mayor Bayani Fernando ) for Marikina City and found them really exemplary. In this way, I’m proud to see her name on the list beside Elmar Ledergerber, the mayor of Zürich, and all other outstanding mayors from all other citites and continents. A ray of hope for the future mayors of the Philippines? Whereas, during the past World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, I almost shiver seeing our President sharing the stage with Switzerland’s President Pascal Couchepin and other Luminaries of Politics and Economy. Davos is an elevated Swiss alpine city in Canton Graubünden, famous for being a Kurort, a health spa, with it’s clean, fresh air and  transparent morning snow. I just hope that our President had learned some lessons about cleanliness and transparency during her visit in this beautiful alpine city.

Naturally, there is no snow in Marikina and the air is not as clean as that of Davos. But have you ever seen the Marikina Glass City Hall? Well, what can be more transparent than a Glass that is clean? I would have preferred and felt good seeing this Lady Mayor Marides Fernando shaking hands with President Pascal Couchepin of Switzerland.

Well, back to Bulan our mayor is still  hiding the documents of the CBT project.Very funny, indeed. Compared against Mayor Marides Fernando– well, it’s night and day. We know that the more you hide, the more you will smell bad. For the progress of Bulan and peace of mind for all Taga-Bulans, I advise our mayor to stop now playing Hide and Seek- for we are not little children anymore – but to follow the example of Mayor Marides Fernando, be simple as she is, and lay down the documents on the table for the concerned Bulan tax payers to see. What’s wrong with that? You really do not need a lawyer to teach you what honesty is or the protection of a courtroom to tell the truth and be transparent and besides, should there be flaws on the documents, well , it will not cost you your life. On the contrary, people of Bulan would be proud of you should you step to the front now and tell the truth. As you know, Taga-Bulans are very forgiving people to someone who belongs to them. Let’s work together for the good of our Town. It may not be Marikina, but who knows, someday it might be on the list.

jun asuncion

Bulan Observer

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The Road To Freedom

 (This is my response to Roy Gersalia’s article entitled  A Source Of Courage And Inspiration  as published in his kaadman site)

You’re right, courage is not an absence of fear, but that by choosing the right thing, man overcomes fear to give place and honor to his own convictions. It is the emotion of fear that tests the real value of a man. Out of fear either man chooses to hide or step to the front. Rizal is a better example for us Filipinos. He told the truth, was denounced by some, was  executed by the Filipinos-  upon order of the Spaniards. He did what was right. Rizal died, but not in vain, for until this day his message is very much alive: Step to the front, tell the Truth and you shall be free! Simple as it is, but it’s the rarest quality you’ll find in the Philippines for it is a corrupted country- because of egoism. Egoism is the root of all Evil, and Moral Corruption is its best result. A morally-corrupted one is coward. As Maryjoy has observed, the Philippines is over- populated with cowardice. Our Politics is medieval, it is a failure, and the cause is a moral one. Jun Lozada wants freedom so he told the truth. Whatever awaits him now and his family is no longer an issue for him- he is now a free man! Does the public really understand what Freedom is? As I have said, the majority is submerge in darkness, like all the egoistic president’s men you referred to, for egoists are blind  and have chosen eternal damnation in hell of  ignorance. Some of us are just lurkers, with eyes half-open, undecided yet, either to leave the cage or not. A matter of strength.Time will tell.
Maryjoy, Catholicism is not the answer to our quest for the Truth, but rather a hindrance. It is not interested about our Freedom, but in the submission of its people, the eternal submersion of its children in darkness, the suppression of critical thinking, the denial of reality and resignation to the situation. Vatican is only interested in submissive obedience and the “religious” payment of  the church taxes for the preservation of its imperialistic and colonial power. This Church is the disguised extension of the Roman Empire till the present time. Catholics are therefore vassals to the “infallible” Pope, the powerful Emperor.The Catholic Church has been around for a long time now and has failed to contribute to our progress in many aspects, including the moral one. The Philippine nation prides  herself to be the only predominantly catholic nation in Asia, and for a long time now also prides herself as Asia’s  most corrupt nation, where dictatorship, greediness, deceptions, denial, egoism, killings, social injustice, distrust, superficiality and perversions of all kinds are  at the top of the agenda. Can we still dare to attribute to the catholic church that of being a source of encouragement and inspiration? Even for a simple-minded somebody who doesn’t know the details of the matter, he or she would simply agree with the fact that there is something wrong with the “catholic ” Philippines, where the national and local governments are run like hell by Filipino politicians and employees, shamelessly amassing their wealth at the expense of the weak, poor and needy. We had had centuries of experience with Catholicism and it’s clear now to accept that within this religious context, or with this religious tool- your choice- it’s virtually impossible to build a  better society. This is blatant reality in our country. This is not scapegoating, this is my critical observation. We were raised as catholics and grew up as catholics, were drilled to memorize ready-made prayers authored by Vatican, and we are champion in reciting them mechanically. But ask a catholic to pray spontaneously and it will be clear in matters of seconds that he or she cannot do it; he was just not taught, hence, did not learn to pray freely.This simple example illustrates already the hidden intention of the Catholic Church, i.e., to prevent you from developing and using your own intellect. This fact, being so common, had blinded us and caused us to search the explanation for our failures somewhere else. Again, Rizal realized this fact already in his time that is why he emphasized Education as the light of the people, the development of critical thinking. The central Europeans realized this havoc before and they protested, and so the Protestant church came into being. Nowadays we are witness to the fact that protestant nations are much more social and human, politically and economically progressive. Look at Italy, Spain and Latin American governments- they are basically corrupt, chaotic and underdeveloped, qualities that we have in abundance in our catholic Philippines.

This is not to offend your belief in God, for here we are talking only about the Church, the Roman Catholic Church. I know you are familiar with the distinction.

jun asuncion

Bulan Observer

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Protect Yourself

The Right of Self-Defense is as old as man himself, much older than the written laws ( positive law) which came  much later, and is the ultimate right  at his disposal when there is an immediate threat to life and limb. This right springs from our instinct of self-preservation. It is thus a natural, biologically-rooted right. Philippine jurisprudence  sanctioned  this natural right by incorporating it in our body of laws and codes specifically under Section 1, Article 11 of the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines.

Here’s the author  David Kopel for a little legal historical background: “According to  Giovanni da Legnano, fourteenth century Milanese ( Milan, Italy) scholar “self-defense proceeds from natural law, and not from positive law, civil or canon.” While positive law did sanction self-defense, self-defense was not an artificial creation of positive law, but rather was an inherent instinct. Although the fourteenth century world was strictly hierarchical, Legnano allowed for self-defense against one’s superior, or even against a judge, if it were clear that the defender was the victim of an unprovoked violent attack. Even a slave could defend his own life against a master, because the law did not allow masters to kill their slaves. Self-defense is lawful, wrote Legnano, not only in defense of life, but also in defense of lawfully possessed property, with deadly force if necessary.The principle of self-defense allows a person to come to the aid of a relative or friend whose person or property is being attacked. Aiding others is not compulsory, however, unless a person can do so safely. Notably, a victim is not required to use only the precise level of force that his assailant uses: “suppose a strong and vigorous man strikes me with his fist, and I am a poor fellow who cannot stand up to him with the fist. May I defend myself with a sword?” Legnano answered in the affirmative. ” So Legnano’s logic.

Here is what Article 11, paragraph 1 of the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines says about Self-Defense.

Art. 11. Justifying circumstances. � The following do not incur any criminal liability:

1. Anyone who acts in defense of his person or rights, provided  that the following circumstances concur:

First. Unlawful aggression;

Second. Reasonable necessity of the means employed to prevent or repel it.

Third. Lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person defending himself.

Here is the whole thing again:

Everybody wants to live in peace and avoids as much as possible any kind of aggression or violent situation. However, reality teaches us that there are people who cannot resist -for various reasons and motives-  to perpetrate evil actions ( unlawful aggression) against a non-provoking, innocent ( lack of sufficient provocation) third party. Under sudden  attack, any healthy person instinctively repels the attack to protect his own life. In this situation which normally happens unexpected and quick, you have mostly no time to plan your action. Your success is measured in the end by the fact that you are still alive by either causing the assailant to flee or by incapacitating him, worse, killing him. Hurting or killing the assailant in the end is by no means a free-wheeling affair. Now it’s the turn of the legal experts and the court to judge your reaction ( reasonable necessity of the means employed ) and result of such reaction to the said unlawful aggression. The burden of proof rests upon you now. But, first, this is the problem that comes after and doesn’t pose a direct threat to your life anymore and, second, this time you have a lawyer defending you.

Of course we do not wish that we would be in such a situation where we have to fight to defend our lives. However, If there are threats or intimidation happening to you or your family, then it is also your right to do something for your own safety and  to be alert, be careful and be observant and use the tools available. Nowadays there are many ways you can do for your protection aside from directly informing the authorities (Police, etc. if you feel being threatened or intimidated by a third party ) and undertaking those common safety measures that we all know as we go on with our daily life.

If there is a perceived threat, then it’s time to double your alertness and security measures. The following  course of actions may add to improve your personal security:

1. Use of your cellular phones

Create a sort of Tele-Alarm System among yourselves by calling and informing your friend directly about your security problem. This friend in turn calls the next one and so on until everybody on the list of your Tele-Alarm System has been reached and informed. You have to speak  among yourselves during your meetings the course of actions to be undertaken , everything of  course will depend on the nature and gravity of the situation.

In a place where politicians are corrupt, oftentimes you wouldn’t be able to trust even the law enforcers. Once the police have sold their loyalty and professionalism to a crook politician, then they have lost  their credibility and sympathy of the people and are therefore no longer in a position to demand respect. In fact they have reduced themselves to private goons, becoming like poor watchdogs for the selfish interest of  their boss and of themselves and they behave foolishly like licensed criminals.

In such a situation, to act as a group is much more effective than to keep your problem to yourself and to solo your security measures. Prepare  ready-made emergency sms (Text), store it in your cellular phones and just send it quick in situation where you can not call anymore or when silence and discretion is of high priority.

2. Use of your photo, video or cellular phone cameras.

 If correctly (no malice intention ) employed, this method is very effective in documenting your observations- and in exposing abuses , corrupt activities and other malevolent actions of criminal people, corrupt police officers and politicians. Once a domain of photo-reporters, journalists and secret agents, this method is now practically employed by everybody. If needed make use of gratis platforms like youtube to upload and post your materials. Always make a backup of your video materials for future use like court hearings, etc. Latest example of the positive use of video reporting taken by a farmer secretely is the exposure of the  brutal police treatment of the farmers defending their land and  properties after they were disowned by the state in the name of modernization boom (construction of highways, bridges, factories etc.) where the said farmers’ properties happen to stand on the way. The chinese government, repressive and denying as it is, were forced to publicly apologize to the world and to these farmers after the video material appeared in Internet.

 3. Link your group to other people and professionals (Lawyers, local Journalists, Local Radio Reporters, Barangay Captains, Head Teachers, Religious Leaders,  etc.) so that they may know the existence of your group and it’s purpose and so that they may also be encouraged to create one and also to assist you in legal matters and the like. If this would spread in the whole town, resulting in the formation of many such groups, then it would be high time to create, let us say, a  Citizen Self-Defense Network. This is one way to combat abuses and intimidation  from people who are supposed to protect you, yet due to corruption ended up protecting their own selfish interest using their office and ,worse, the weapons paid by you,- the tax payers.

You must always remember that the Philippines is a Constitutional State, it’s a rule of law ( not a rule of one man or woman), meaning our civil liberties and rights are provided for in the Constitution (see Bill Of Rights ),  and that you are not a criminal if you are aware of your rights and if you make use of them, defend or fight for them. And do not forget, Bulan is part of  Philippine jurisdiction, thus the Constitution also applies to Bulan, to every tagaBulan. As I have said before, Bulan is no longer an isolated town with timid population where elected government officials (and a few feudalistic people ) may just rule and abuse their office and people as they wish. Concerned tagaBulans all over the country, all over the globe are now watching Bulan and are ready to help prevent abuses and expose to the whole world  corrupt public servants by their names. In Bulan, sovereignty also resides in the people! It is populated now by people who are becoming conscious of their political culture, people with well-developed sense for justice and duty for the community, people who desire for progress and real change for the better. The tagaBulans are on their way to modernising their thinking yet remaining proud of  their noble  traditions.

Again, let us help one another in protecting the integrity of all tagaBulans.

jun asuncion

Bulan Observer

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Filed under Bulan Municipal, Politics, Views and Concern

A Government Run Like Hell

  Thank you prodebate4 for sharing your thoughts and your battles in life. Our country is still in experimental stage, still searching for the best form of government and leadership, the so called search for identity after the historical traumas that twisted our perception and development, divided and wounded us deep and rendered weak our collective soul. Some neighboring asian countries seem to have already found the political and economic order that fit them, they are able to stand up after the fall, for they had also their share of traumas. This is individual psychology manifesting itself among nations. Some are strong and recover quick, some are weak and need more time to heal. Your fight against the Marcos rule was just the beginning, for though you won, the battle has just begun. This is now a fight on the educational level. Rebellion doesn’t solve the problem, as experience has shown us. We now canalize our political energies into a form of change that even the youngest in the family will comprehend and able to participate. No more rebellion and bloodshed for they bring only more wounds and sufferings, and on this level, the young ones and the weak can not participate, thus leaving us a lost and weak generation again after the fighters had grown old or disappeared. In this way, development is not possible. This is why we’ve remained stuck to Manuel Quezon’s  “a government run like hell by Filipinos” even up to this day.
  No more rebellion, but our fight against corruption and corrupt government officials continue as well as our fight in protecting the integrity of the people of Bulan. Bulan Observer contributes to this task by continuously observing our town
and commenting to the developments happening and spreading it around the globe. It is my goal to link Bulan Observer to national and international institutions already established and recognized worldwide like Transparency International, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, etc. so that we will be more effective in combating corruption and abuses. Bulan Observer has no other wish than to see – today and tomorrow- a municipal government of Bulan that is not run like hell by vicious and repressive people devoid of insights and visions, but by progressive, intelligent and dignified politicians and  public servants equipped not only with real visions for their constituents but with the courage to give far-ranging solutions to the problems of employment, health care, nutrition, housing, education, security and environmental protection , to name just a few.
Well, for our mission for life, I wish you a lifetime of patience. Without somebody sacrificing, no goal can ever be achieved.
jun asuncion

Bulan Observer

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Filed under Education, Politics, Town Agenda, Views and Concern