"In societies where Robbing Hoods are treated like a celebrity it is but natural to expect political parties to act like a Mafia syndicate" Political Jaywalker "In a nation where corruption is endemic people tend to confuse due process with aiding and abetting criminals" Political Jaywalker "War doesn't determine who is right, war determines who is left" Bertrand Russell "You have just one flash flood of money, you keep your people poor. It's like a time bomb and it's scary" Philippine Lawmaker

Friends in Crisis & Corona's Case

Good friends are hard to come by but unlike family that you are stuck with whether you like it or not you have a choice on who you want to be your fiend. Unlike family that you can’t rid of because they are family friends can be discarded especially when this particular friend turns out to be a frienemy.

Of course when one finds a good friend one sticks by him/her like a pea in a pod, so the question is how good of a friend are you? A good friend is expected to stand by their friend especially when one is embattled or in a crisis. But what if your friend is embroiled in a scandal, how far will you take your friendship? What if your friend is culpable, will you still defend and fight for your friend?

When a friend is caught in a scandal as in getting involved in a corruption case, how does one handle it? I know how difficult it is, there will be those who will be judgmental without knowing all the facts. The point is what if there is basis on the accusations? Should a friend defend their friend even if that friend is likely to be guilty as charged?

There are incidents in Renato Corona’s impeachment case where I can relate. (Ok, I know what you are thinking) nah, I am so sorry to disappoint you but when I say I can relate, it is on the friendship aspect and the oppressed victims and not as the accused. I had a friend who was involved in a corruption case and sadly they were convicted. The difference is I never had to act as their PR or one of their liar brigades because they are man enough to admit their culpability. Do I still consider them as friends? Of course I still do since they have served their time and paid their debt to society. Had they fought it out would I have defended them if I knew they were guilty as hell? Obviously not and the friendship would have ended right there and then because one has to walk the talk and not talk the talk.

What has all these got to do with Corona’s impeachment? Well I was intrigued at the private message I received that originated with the image that was posted on my Facebook wall by Benito Maray below.

It seems that the image was the subject of a libel litigation where Cristina Corona won a conviction against her blood relative Jose Basa III. Someone posted a comment that Cristina won in this case who turns out to be a friend of one of Corona’s daughter. I was so taken aback because of the manner by which it was written so I responded in this manner:
True Caren, Cristina Corona "won in the libel case" she brought against her blood relatives and almost had her uncle spend some time in jail. The point is one can get convicted of libel in the Philippines even if one is telling the truth based on proof beyond reasonable doubt and not just preponderance of evidence, hehehe.

This is also the reason why there is a clamor to amend the dumb libel law in the Philippines that has become one of the tools of those in power to silence their enemies from telling the truth. In civilized society libel is a civil case while in the Philippines where corruption rule it is a criminal offense.

As if that is not dumb enough one only needs to "prove malicious intent" to get a conviction against one's enemy or those exposing corruption. Proving malicious intent is really difficult to prove when one is telling the truth but in a corrupt society, powerful individuals like the Corona's can easily influence the judge to find malicious intent when there is none.
Followed it up with this:
Oppressing blood relatives is good news to you? Is that how you treat your blood relatives too? How about friends, do you have any?
Then this, LOL:
nyeta daming tanga sa mundong ito, LOL.... 
She then wrote me a private message telling me of how she knows one of Corona’s daughters and knew about the BGEI controversy since she was 12 years old. That’s fine, but until she tells me what are the facts surrounding the BGEI controversy I don’t think I can take her word for it. I asked her some questions, hopefully she responds and until then it will be watch out for the next edition, LOL.

The BGEI controversy is a problem faced by some people I know and it seems that this is a common problem among Filipino Americans who owns properties in the Philippines. I even wrote a blog entry on a Filipino Canadian who was killed in the very property where he evicted the tenants and some of the comments I received in that blog is just disgusting. I have yet to encounter a Filipino American who can tell me that they have no problem with their property in the Philippines. I hear all sorts of ridiculous story thus when this GEI controversy came out, I tend to believe the side of Sister Flory.

In a society where corruption is endemic, friendship can sometimes take on a different meaning, as in “walang iwanan” the Mafiosi way. The question is are you the Mafiosi type of friend or do you draw the line?

  • Watch  Impeachment Trial of Renato C. Corona

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    Ang Totoo (The Truth) - Juana Change

    Right on target, if this is a shooting match this satire is like hitting your prey between the eye. Good job May aka Juana Change!

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    Miriam’s mental health

    By Philip S. Chua, MD, FACS, FPCS
    Filipino United Network - USA

    The US Pinoys for Good Governance (USPFGG) based in the United States, of which yours truly is a convenor, has started an online Petition for the rejection and expulsion of Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago from the International Criminal Court.

    The Petition reads:

    “We have taken the liberty of writing to you on behalf of concerned Filipino organizations and individuals in the Philippines and overseas who subscribe to and actively advocate the goal of competent, honest, and progressive governance of our homeland, the Philippines.

    “We are respectfully bringing to your attention a serious matter that affects the image and reputation of the Philippines and, potentially, the image and reputation of the International Criminal Court.

    “In addition to mastery of international jurisprudence and forensic skills, we assume that you also require a sound mind, emotional and psychological stability, unsullied integrity and incorruptibility, as well as patience, civility and impeccable decorum.

    “We submit that a person who is emotionally or psychologically unstable, prone to fits of uncontrollable rage, lacking in patience and empathy, ruthless with the feelings of fellow human beings, bereft of civility and uncaring about decorum does not deserve a place in your honorable court.

    “We further submit that an individual who has admitted to having publicly lied and who has demonstrated partiality, prejudice, lack of principles and questionable integrity as a public official does not deserve to be a judge, much less a judge of the International Criminal Court.

    “In this regard, we regret to inform you that such an undeserving individual has been elected to the International Criminal Court, in a lapse of good judgment on the part of the government of the Republic of the Philippines.

    “We are referring to Miriam Defensor-Santiago, a member of the Philippine Senate, who has been elected to the International Criminal Court and is shortly scheduled to take her oath of office.

    “We are bringing this matter to your attention for fear that you may construe her uncivilized behavior and her loose ethics as epitomizing the Filipino people. While, ironically, it should be a source of pride for Filipinos to have one of our own elected to your honorable court, we are embarrassed by the ill-considered nomination of Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago. Far from representing the best of us, she typifies the worst. We fear that her presence in the International Criminal Court will make us the laughing stock of the world.

    “We, therefore, respectfully submit that a reconsideration of her election to the International Criminal Court is called for and that her nomination be rejected upon reconsideration.”

    Atty. Rodel Rodis of California, the author of the Petition and president of thr USPFGG, also reported the following Excerpts from a Philippine Supreme Court decision:


    On January 7, 2010, Efren G. Battad filed a Complaint against Senator Miriam P. Defensor-Santiago (Sen. Santiago) for serious misconduct, violation of Presidential Decree No. 1829, and Canons of the Code of Professional Responsibility. Complainant alleged that Sen. Santiago committed the following acts:

    4.1. Culpable violation of the Constitution. By her deliberate failure to make a full disclosure of her financial and business interests. She purchased a lot and built a tiled mansion in La Vista Subdivision, Quezon City, at an estimated cost of at least P53,204,631.00; a building in Quezon City; and a weekend mansion in Tagaytay City,

    4.2. Graft and corruption, and unexplained wealth. For many years, respondent was a rented apartment dweller until she suddenly acquired the La Vista mansion and occupied the same in June 2002. The value of the newly acquired properties is grossly disproportionate to her salary as Senator which, according to her, is "P43,000.00 per month;"

    4.3. Obstruction of apprehension and prosecution of a criminal offense. When her son Alexander Robert violently died in her house in La Vista, Quezon City, on November 20, 2003, respondent claimed it was "suicide". Law enforcement agencies of the government were not allowed to conduct scene of the crime investigation. She had the cadaver of her son immediately cremated, thus destroying, suppressing and concealing the very corpus delicti of the offense;

    4.4. When appointed as Secretary of Agrarian Reform in 1990, her appointment was unanimously rejected by the Commission on Appointments, then presided by Senate President Jovito Salonga. The charge against her was graft and corruption for having stolen the Toyota Supra sports car of Margarita Roxas from the custody of the Bureau of Customs. Her husband, Narciso Santiago, Jr., was at that time connected with the Bureau of Customs;

    4.5. As former Commissioner of Immigration and Deportation in 1988 to 1989, respondent embarked on her corrupt and notorious "Alien Legalization Program". Under this program, thousands of aliens who opted to legalize their residence in the Philippines were charged with at least P200,000.00 each. Unfortunately, the fees collected were not remitted to the government. Worse, one (1) receipt was repeatedly used for 10 or more aliens;

    4.6. Senator Miriam DefensorSantiago is of unsound mind. She appeals to be suffering from a severe mental disorder, characterized by the following symptoms:

    4.7. Unparliamentary behavior. She repeatedly abused her position and power as Senator to defame and slander people, x x x She has repeatedly, with impunity, violated the lawyer's duty as a Member of the Bar to abstain from all offensive [behavior] x x x and her duty to uphold the dignity of the court by using offensive language x x x Further, the Senator has continuously abused her privilege as a lawyer and as a Senator by indulging in offensive [behavior] and language x x x;

    4.8. Using her position and power as Senator, she gave unwarranted benefits to her husband, brother, sister, son and cousin by having them appointed to the government posts;

    4.9. Repeated disrespect to the Supreme Court, and lack of remorse.

    Complainant prayed that Sen. Santiago be disbarred and her name be removed from the Roll of Attorneys. Battad's petition was denied on a legal technicality.

    Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago has the right to speak, but any sane person also has the right not to hear her histrionics, vulgar, unprofessional, and abusive language. All of us have the right to peace and sanity, including private prosecutor Vitaliano Aguirre II, who like me and million other TV viewers of the Corona impeachment trial, covered his ears.

    For more data, please visit: philipSchua.com
    Email: scalpelpen@gmail.com

    Philip S. Chua, MD, FACS, FPCS, Cardiac Surgeon Emeritus in Northwest Indiana, USA, trained at the Texas Heart Institute in Houston, is Chairman of Filipino United Network (FUN-USA), Vice Chairman of Filipino American Leadership Council (FALCONadvocacy) and Vice President for Far East of Cardiovascular Hospitals of America, Wichita, Kansas. He is a columnist for five newspapers and one magazine in the United States and five newspapers and one magazine in the Philippines. Author of Lets Stop "Killing" Our Children, A simplified survival guide for parents and society to save our children.

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    Renato Corona’s Credibility Problem

    Renato Corona professed to respect and has faith in the Philippine constitution being a “top notch” lawyer and presently a chief justice of the Supreme Court. Lately he seems to show inconsistencies in his pronouncement which hopefully is just the normal hypocrisy as seen among public officials but from the looks of it, may point to something more sinister and more serious as it looks.

    Whatever happened to the “I will answer point by point the accusations against me” stance taken by Corona? The guy is the top honcho in the liars league in the Philippines este law profession and now all of a sudden he defers to his defense counsels whether he will testify or not? Was that an admission that they are better lawyers than him or was it simply about invoking his right to self-incrimination? If that is the case I am with and fully agree with Erin Tanada that he needs to man up or shut up.

    This statement below coming from a chief justice is preposterous to say the least:

    “I was the one who blocked that and for them to get that amount, they would have to … remove me. That’s the truth. That’s the root cause of this impeachment,” he said.

    “If you will ask me now why they want me out, I think it’s because I blocked that demand for a P10-billion compensation for Hacienda Luisita.”

    If Corona says he is innocent and is just being targeted for his stand detrimental to Aquino’s Hacienda Luisita, what should prevent him from testifying to that effect in the impeachment trial? Or is it because he knows better than what he blabbers with the media is nothing more than a corner sari sari store gossip forum among his fishwives colleagues?

    Corona pitted against Ana Basa and his wife’s aunt Sister Flor a nun for 65 years, people will definitely believe Ana Basa and the nun. This guy seems to delude himself that he has the credibility when he lost that long after he shamelessly accepted his midnight appointment from Gloria Arroyo who is now facing an electoral sabotage criminal case.

    He claims he was not directly involved in the 30 year old family problem and yet he admits he withdrew BGEI’s fund from his personal bank accounts. For someone who claims he is not directly involved but holds their funds without even showing a board resolution that he has the authority to keep the money in his personal bank account is not just highly unusual but irregular or even criminal.

    If it is true that Cristina is almost solely the owner of BGEI, does that mean she has bought off all 26 remaining heirs or at the least assigned their interest to her? Where are the documents to bolster his unscrupulous claims? Corona’s claim is contradictory to the claims of the late Jose Basa III, so how can Corona claim otherwise? As if his lies are not so obvious enough Corona even went further as if raising the stake in a poker game that they have all been given their share, LOL. Really, is that why the family of Jose Basa III is surprised at finding out just now that Renato Corona borrowed P11M and that he has in his personal bank account P32M of the BGEI funds? Are the heirs of Jose Basa III being inconsiderate in asking for an accounting when they all got their share? Perhaps instead of just a circus freak side show with the media Corona should also present his documentary evidence to bolster his claims, or is he now aware of that? Hehehe.

    Perhaps this is the mindset of some people in the Philippines where they hoodwink their relatives who are out of the country and settled in the US. I have not encountered any FilAm owning a property in the Philippines who did not encounter sad experiences with their relatives.

    The revelation of Ana Basa is very credible as this just validate the experience of others who are taken advantages of by greedy relatives in the Philippines. But this experience of the Basa's truly is just too much to comprehend or fathom that Renato Corona a supposedly honorable man will go to this length to oppress his wife's relatives. To even admit openly that the BGEI funds was deposited in his personal bank account and withdrawing at the time of his impeachment truly shows the chicanery of this man...... do people still believe we deserve a Chief Justice like Corona?

    If other balikbayans like this Fil-Canadian who was killed senselessly over a property dispute in the Philippines think of what greedy public officials are capable of doing to intimidate and oppress their relatives who they knew are not in a position to fight a long drawn legal battle in the Philippines. If other balikbayan are killed over property dispute, I tend to believe Ana Basa's revelation that her father was harassed and intimidated by armed goons roaming their neighborhood. Greedy people victimizing their own blood relatives do exist and there are countless others who remain silent and not let this blow over due to the embarrassment this brings to their family. The sad part is there are people with whack mindset because of the culture of endemic corruption cannot tell what is right from wrong, and to see a Supreme Court Chief Justice involved in a property dispute is truly bizarre. Hopefully we are able to correct this deviant behavior now or we might not be able to get out of this if we truly want a just and free society. 

    I am really curious how Renato Corona will “adequately” explain every single centavo in his inconsistent SALN and personal bank accounts while keeping quiet regarding his dollar accounts.
    Now, he even insults the Filipinos thinking they are too dumb not to see his outright lies denying he never pointed a gun at the BGEI caretaker but just a demolition job against him by the Carpio law office. Really, why will a mere caretaker execute an affidavit at the time if he is just being used? Who in his right mind and a powerless poor man at that will execute an affidavit against a very powerful well connected man who has no qualms blowing out his brains with a gun?

    Renato Corona's media blitzkrieg is just another added attraction to the circus freak side show but no matter how he lies to save his sorry behind he just keeps on digging his own grave deeper. I dare ask again, do we really deserve Renato Corona for a chief justice when we have better upright credible man of integrity that can take his place pronto? 

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    Gun totting CJ Renato Corona?

    Ana Basa, one of Jose Ma. Basa III nine children and one of the heirs of the original BGEI stockholder revelation truly makes one wonder how in the world did Renato Corona gets to the post of justice of the Supreme Court?  Are we really that desperate and do we really have such dearth shortage of lawyers that qualifies for the chief justice position?
    The Philippines definitely has no shortage of lawyers as a matter of fact we have too many of them. If that is the case, did they change the qualification to become a justice, or one has to be extremely loyal at all cost to his/her benefactor? The Philippines is not known for its politics of patronage if that was not the case but under that scenario does it really matter even if one acts like a thug? From the looks of it and if Ana Basa is telling the truth which is more likely having presented the sworn statement of BGEI’s caretaker, to quote:

    BASA: Mang Indo (Pedro Aguilon). It happened when my father came here because he heard complaints from tenants of BGEI. We went to the property where BGEI was located. Mang Indo was a caretaker there. He let us into the property one evening. The Coronas got mad. Mang Indo said he was so scared that he did not want to file a case against Corona after the latter put a gun to his head. He feared that if he filed a case, Corona might kill him.

    The barangay captain was actually encouraging him to file a case but he was so afraid. He is not rich and does not have the means to do so.

    He just executed a sworn statement of what actually happened to him so that in the event that something really happened to him, at least people would know this experience he had.

    When Corona put a gun to his head, Corona said: Gusto mo bang pasabugin kong mukha mo (Do you want me to blast your face)? That’s what the Chief Justice said to him back in 1997 (showing to the Inquirer the original copy of Mang Indo’s sworn affidavit).

    The above incident happened during the time when Renato Corona was the legal adviser for then President Fidel Ramos.  That incident alone should have been enough for a lawyer to be disbarred and fired from his job but it seems he knows how to ingratiate himself whoever is in power.

    As if that incident is not repulsive enough based on the Ana Basa’s statement he has abused his power and connection to oppress his wife’s closed blood relatives. One has to be really a very bad terrible person to do such things but greed knows no barrier when it engulfs a person to amoral heights to not just crave but steal other people’s money that happens to belong to his wife Cristina’s relatives.

    What truly amaze are Corona’s defense liar’s errrr lawyers questioning the timing of Ana Basa’s revelation, and they are supposed to be smart and intelligent? In the case of Ana Basa it is true that she only came out just now but the question does not present the whole picture. Of course idiots’ errrr wise guys oooops smart as they think they are the defense lawyers will of course play the dumb and dumber ploy in denying the injustice and oppression suffered by Ana’s dad. It is as if Jose Ma. Basa III who went thru all the troubles and almost spent some time in jail fighting for their rightful share of BGEI’s income and property never happened. If they are in Ana’s position where warrants of arrest hangs like a Damocles sword over one’s head will they also dare come out when their oppressor is at the peak of his power? Liars errrr lawyers defending the indefensible will always shoot from the hips to discredit people to protect their client but Ana says it best here:

    I must confess that I agonize over this decision to come out and spill unflattering information about Chief Justice Corona. But this painful side of what happened to us must be told because the truth about Corona must be set free. He has made life miserable for our family and relatives. He can do more harm to others. We are coming out, comforted by the thought that we are doing our share to make the country aware of this man and to protect the integrity of the Supreme Court.

    It is not like they have no firsthand knowledge or has not experienced firsthand how it is to be on the receiving end of Corona’s injustice that one will dare come out again just to suffer the same fate as their dad. Of course Ana will come out just now, when she knows that their adversary is not exactly in a position to oppress them further. Why would she not come out now knowing that finally they have a chance to be heard once and for all and justice is probably within reach unlike before?

    Click to read the PDI article part 1, part 2

  • Watch  Impeachment Trial of Renato C. Corona

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