Sunday, September 03, 2006

Transitions - Impeachment to STOP Cha Cha

Now that the 2nd Impeachment has, in large part, been relegated to the background (save for a libel case against Alan Peter Cayetano - check out John Marzan) of our political landscape, our attention returns to the bogus People's Initiative of Gloria (PIG) and Charter Change.

Recently, Singaw ng Bayad presented their questionably obtained collection of signatures to the COMELEC amid much hoopla and "hakot", saying that the people have spoken (schumey begs to disagree). Not long after, their petition to the COMELEC was dismissed. This came as no surprise to us, having already heard COMELEC Chair Abalos proclaim that they had no choice. And so, Singaw will now troop to the Supreme Court to beg and plead that the Court reverse itself and make them happy. That part of Singaw's "moro moro" is still up in the air, but am for dang sure they and their supporters are working hard to make their "zarzuela" end the way they wrote it.

Yesterday, on Pinky Webb's and Edu Manzano's Saturday afternoon radio program (dzMM), I finally met Raul Lambino. He was accompanied by pro-Cha Cha columnist Chit Pedrosa, a woman who seems blithely unaware that 67% of our people are against this version of Charter Change. Completing our anti Cha Cha Tag Team was RP Santiago, a member of One Voice's legal group. The back and forthing was lively. Lambino and Pedrosa kept harping on the need for change, that the advocacy for charter change has been going on for decades, that the transitory provisions are just a small part of this initiative and therefore shouldn't really be bothered with, yada yada yada. RP dwelt on the process and questioned Singaw's need for speed. I got to rant on the why - that the Usurper in the Palace by the Pasig with a Speech Impediment was fully behind it to avoid accountability. Am happy to report that out of all the texts sent in by listeners, only one was pro-Cha Cha.

During one of the commercial breaks, trying to elicit sympathy from me, Lambino bemoaned the toll this initiative was taking on him. He sadly spoke about being hospitalized twice. I sympathized, but did say that is what happens when you back a bogus plan. He also said something about the honesty of his advocacy, defending himself by saying that he was an FPJ supporter. Uh... Mr. Lambino, can you say "operator"?

For everyone's refreshment, these are the reasons why we say STOP (Sa Tamang Oras at Paraan) Cha Cha:
  • Gloria Macapagal Arroyo wants to ensure her hold on power and block all efforts to hold her accountable for alleged lying, cheating and stealing especially since her lackeys don't look like winners should there be elections next year.
  • There is no enabling law.
  • The change from presidential to parliamentary, bicameral to unicameral are revisions, not amendments, to our Constitution. Like Lagman and Villafuerte of Webster dictionary fame, the proponents say there is no difference between the two words. Duh.
  • Should Cha Cha prevail, there will be no need for 2007 elections and the interim Parliament can extend terms for all elected officials beyond 2010.
  • We will lose our right to vote directly for our President. We will be allowing the likes of Nograles, de Venecia, Enrile to dictate our nation's directions. To where, pray tell?
  • The abolition of the Senate will remove the checks and balance necessary for good governance. We will be loosening the control on the directions of national change instead of strengthening it. We will be opening the door to even more graft and corruption. Do you really want a rubber stamp government? Who will act as fiscalizer?
  • Fusing the Executive and Legislative powers will allow for the same people to choose and promote programs of government without question. The entire national budget, except maybe for fixed expenditures (salaries and debt servicing) will be pork barrel.
  • The bulk of Representatives in this 13th Congress has shown itself to be terribly loyal to the sitting president. In gratitude to her largesse, they will continue to turn a blind eye to the real needs of our people and allow her and her family to go on raping and pillaging.
Remember - Yes to Cha Cha means Gloria Forever. We say, No to Gloria's Cha Cha, No to Plebiscite!


vic said...

Why, instead of so many groups “pros” and “antis” fighting it out with the outcome unsure, why not work together and redraft the proposed charter to everyone’s satisfaction. Not necessarily all can get what they want, but maybe halfway or a compromise, much better than all or nothing that could happen the way things are proceeding. I believe there are enough able and honorable personalities on all sides to agree on something, because the country can’t just go on with this confrontational ‘me is right’ , ‘you is wrong’ attitude forever.

justicialiga said...

Hello Vic,

Thanks for the words of advice. I was really worried back then. Too bad the blog could not be edited since it appeared I was badgering the Pro Chachas.

Anyway, what you are proposing is laudible but is hardly workable. That is because the Administration needs to have this in place before next year's elections.

I watched the Debate with MAre and Pare last Thursday night.

There,the Sigaw ng Bayan Spokesman Atty. Lambino had a slip of the tongue and proclaimed that the interim parliament will have at least 3 years to debate and prepare the further revisions of the Charter.

So what does that mean? Well it means the economic changes touted to be needed by the nation won't be coming for another 4 years or even come at all.

Another one and more foreboding is that Sigaw ng Bayan isn't saying the truth about their stand on whether there will still be elections in 2007 once their revisions are acepted by the people.

Because if the so called "People's Initiative" is accepted before the 2007 elections and the 2007 elections were then held for the seats in Parliament, the resulting parliament wouldn't be an interim parliament but a regular parliament.

Helga said...

Just before another break on the radio show, Lambino conceded that there was no timetable in the transitory provisions for parliamentary elections.

As to working together, that's not a bad idea, but in this case, the best idea would be a Constitutional Convention. That is the arena for constitutional change, Vic. Am not for a Constitutional Assembly, cannot think the changes would be well thought out with the majority in Congress being who and what they are.

john marzan said...

no need to shift from presidential to parliamentary. just amend the consti to remove provisions that limit economic activities.

as for parliamentary being a better system dahil pwedeng mapalitan kaagad ang mga untrustworthy o corrupt na gov't, that a lie. cha cha will not remove arroyo. tignan mo si ramos, nagmukhang tanga pa dito. LOL.

besides, the parliamentary system doesn't mean new faces or more credible representatives in politics. yung mga tongressmen natin na pumatay ng impeachment ay siya pa ring magiging mga MPs natin. so arroyo will face no accountability whatsoever.

another feature of arroyo's cha cha is the abolition of the senate, meaning mawawala na ang walang checks and balance sa gobierno, which proponents of cha cha are even selling as a good thing, because there's "too much check and balance" raw.

with the way arroyo's allies have behaved in the House, arroyo and her MPs will be protecting one another sa parliament. nobody can check their abuses.

sabi nila kapag parliamentary wala na raw magpe-people power... eh hindi ba sa thailand, ukraine, Georgia, at Kyrgyzstan ay nagkaroon rin ng people power kahit na parliamentary ang gov't nila?

john marzan said...

if you have nothing to hide, you don't worry about "checks and balance" like this administration is.

Helga said...

Korek, John! Just remembered something Chit Pedrosa said yesterday - she actually said this cha cha would remove the need for people power, and was in and of itself a form of passive people power. Yeah, manufactured, false, people power.

vic said...


Whatever the process, be it Constitutional Convention, Assembly or just simply a group of well-meaning unknown people drafting a document in some discreet place, the documents should be subject to negotiations among all interested parties regarding contentious issues and iron them out, and in the end a compromise is still needed on some issues that can not be settled at the current condition and subject to future negotiations. I’m just giving these two-cents of mine because that’s what we did with ours, that until now we still have to iron out Section 33,“the Notwithstanding Clause” of our Charter after 24 years. And until today I still don’t know the names of the actual people who did the draft, except that it was during the tenure of PM Pierre Elliot Trudeau.

To me this is not an election contest that the winners should go the Parliament or Congress. This is about the most important document to come along to which may determine the direction where the country is bound to. To go all or nothing on any one side of the issue, I believe is not the safest way to go. But again this just my opinion.

schumey said...

Unfortunately, proponents of the Cha-Cha cannot be trusted. They are known operators and allies of those who are presently in power. They refuse to see the logic of working within the bounds of law and forces their Cha-Cha down our throats. The constitution is only 20 yrs. old, the U.S. has hardly amended theirs and their constitution is more than 300 yrs. old. Our politics and politicians must mature first before thinking of changing the constitution. Traditional politics must be removed to ensure a political evolution and pave the way for an honest to goodness change.

Helga said...

Vic, it's the process with which to ensure change that's problematic over here. There are quite a few well-meaning folk that are also equipped to bring us those constitutional changes, but the best way (in my view) is to get those folks together in a constitutional convention. The proponents of this Charter Change fashioned it under false pretenses. The reason why GMA wants it so badly is because it will delay her being accountable, no matter that some of these guys are sincere. She's a user and an abuser.

The main reason being touted against a consti convention is that it costs (around Php5B) too much. That's lame. If it's your constitution, the bones and muscle of our government, there should be no question about cost. The proponents for Constitutional Assembly would much rather keep that money in their pockets. And should a Constitutional Assembly prevail, those tasked to make those changes will make them without the greater good in mind.

As a former Canadian immigrant and resident of Toronto, I was impressed with how the government worked, and it was clear that Canadian instutions were so well grounded, the tremors that rocked it did little to shake up the bedrock. Do they still show "Question Hour" on TV? I particularly enjoyed watching it as my step Dad ranted at them from his sofa. :->

vic said...

yes, the question period is still on. the whole process still the same, except the actors change after 11 years of jean chretien. during PM chretien time it was more comical because of jean's physical affliction that affects his speech plus his french accent and it take a litle while before eveyone could understand whatwas he screaming about, mostly swearing. anyways good luck to all you and i may retire there soon. got a nice little place next street to atty. bello. the guy who was allegedly involved in election fraud. nice neighborhood..

Puyat1981 said...

im 23 years old and dunno much about politics, but i appreciate your initiatives, tho i wish for too much politics to stop...we have alot of problems here...its tiring in a way....

manuelbuencamino said...


For as long as Gloria wields power even a constitutional convention is out of the question.

There is no way we will have a clean election while she holds sway. There is no way she will allow a convention that will be against her interests.

No con-ass, no con-con until she's gone and the entire country has taken a long hot shower.

Helga said...

MB, you echo the Black & White position exactly. I guess I should've been more succinct and preambled my answer to Vic in that way. We are truly only for ConCon without Gloria.

Have you heard? She was floating that idea, a sort of concession to her detractors to keep us quiet, allow a ConCon instead of ConAss. But we won't fall for it. STOP Cha Cha's official position is also no ConCon under her rule. But there are those in One Voice that are open to this.

manuelbuencamino said...


I think con-con is where One Voice will turn into Opposing Voices.

An old saying by Will Rogers applies to those whose minds are open to a con-con under Gloria -

"There are three kinds of men: The ones that learn by reading.  The few who learn by observation.  The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence and find out for themselves."