I was thinking of the title “It’s Tough to Put a Good Man Down”, but it must be my inner Howard Stern at work, so there. I don’t know Gordon as a person that much and don’t know him as mayor. What I do know is this – he was instrumental in the transformation of Subic and Olongapo from Sin City to a bustling Freeport . However, that’s not enough because in the recent days, I was hearing a lot of chatter about Gordon, corruption, and smuggling – and I, too want to get down to the bottom of this or at least get to know more about the discussions in this arena. Now mind you, I am not an investigative reporter – but I do know how to use Google with maximum efficiency.
Issues, Complaints and Rebuttals
AP commentator Killem, raised a valid point when he said “its`s not correct that dick gordon claimed all the glory in subic, but disregard its the ugly side of it, reminds me of selective memory of gordon este noynoy supporters. peace =)” –
Then he provides the following links:
- http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=247260 -read the article of max soliven
For short, Gordon should get equal treatment and scrutiny as Noynoy. And in like manner, should also owe up not to the successes but also the failures at SBMA.
First off, I want to cite this 2000 article by robert Frank, staff reporter of the Wall Street Journal
The Corruption in the Philippines Keeps Getting Worse With Estrada’s Tactics and Cronyism
Former U.S. Base, Is Hit By Cronyism and Closings
By ROBERT FRANK Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
SUBIC BAY, Philippines — Kevin Hamdorf knew there was trouble in the neighborhood even before his watchdog was taken hostage.
As one of the pioneers of the Subic Bay Freeport Zone in the early 1990s, he had helped turn this former U.S. military base into an international business hub and a symbol of the New Philippines. Gone were the gunboats, blackouts and bar girls. In came Acer, FedEx, fiber-optic cables and business lunches at the Hollywood Steakhouse. By 1997, economic developers world-wide were trekking to Subic to study the Philippine miracle.
“So much for the miracle,” sighs Mr. Hamdorf, hunched over a plate of cold French fries at the half-empty Hollywood Steakhouse. Mr. Hamdorf, a photographer from Australia, used to take pictures for Subic businesses and events. He hasn’t had a corporate call in weeks. Acer Group, the Taiwanese computer giant, is cutting jobs and moving business to China, while France’s Thomson SA just closed its phone factory. On Aim High Avenue, a circuit-board maker, a convenience store and a pencil plant have all moved out. The new Negritos Cyber Canteen does a brisk business in pork rice but doesn’t have a computer.
A Hundred for One Dalmatian
Brownouts, smuggling and crime have returned, residents say. Mr. Hamdorf’s house, just outside the Freeport Zone, was robbed twice, despite the presence of Nikko, his Dalmatian watchdog. After the dog was grabbed last month, it took $100 in ransom to get him back.
If there’s a ground zero in the sudden crisis of confidence facing the Philippines, it is here in Subic Bay, 55 miles northwest of Manila. Once a symbol of all that could go right with Asian democracy and free markets, the commercial and residential development is now a lesson in cronyism, corruption and the clumsy leadership of Philippine President Joseph “Erap” Estrada.
A former actor in local B-movies, Mr. Estrada is known for his glistening pompadour, his Average Joe image and his vigor — he takes pride in his many illegitimate children. Since he came to power, the Philippines has become the slowest-growing economy in Asia, after Japan. Its stock market has been among the world’s worst performers this year, privatization has stalled, and foreign direct investment is down more than 40% this year from 1999. Islamic rebels and Communist bandits are back in action, along with the cronies of Ferdinand Marcos. The can-do optimism of former President Fidel Ramos has been replaced by daily Erap jokes, like:
How do you tell when Erap sends you a fax?
It has a stamp on it.
Not so long ago, the Philippines was being cheered as the comeback kid of Southeast Asia. While its neighbors collapsed in crisis in 1998, this country forged ahead with only minor damage. Its U.S.-built legal and accounting systems, free press and rapid reforms were proof, many said, that good institutions were more important to Asia’s development than individual leadership. Progress will march on, said Gen. Jose Almonte, then national security adviser, in 1996, “even if a chimpanzee becomes president.”
The picture began to darken after Mr. Estrada took office in 1998 and brought a different style to economic management. After intervening in a stock-manipulation probe on behalf of a business friend, Mr. Estrada called in to a late-night television talk show in March and told the country’s top stock regulator, “May lightning strike you down!” A $1 billion tax case against Lucio Tan, the country’s wealthiest man and Mr. Estrada’s main campaign backer, was recently dropped because the government missed the filing deadline. This comes at a time when a tax-collection shortfall is widening the budget gap and threatening a bailout program with the International Monetary Fund that was set up before Asia’s financial crisis.
“We thought our institutions were so strong that it no longer really mattered who was president,” says Bernardo Villegas, dean of economics at the University of Asia and the Pacific in Manila. “Now we realize there’s a limit to that.”
Nowhere have the limits been tested more than at Subic Bay. On a recent afternoon, as a typhoon howls into the harbor, a group of local business leaders and workers march into a meeting hall to celebrate the second anniversary of the Subic Administration, which oversees the zone. The anniversary used to be in November. But President Estrada changed it to September, to honor the day he ousted the administration chairman, Richard Gordon, who was appointed by President Ramos.
In the summer of 1998, Philippine police, armed with riot gear and automatic rifles, surrounded the administration headquarters to remove Mr. Gordon, who was barricaded inside. A dynamic salesman and self-confessed autocrat, Mr. Gordon was largely responsible for Subic’s $2.6 billion in investment and global success, and was slated to remain chairman until 2004. Mr. Estrada, angered that Mr. Gordon didn’t support his presidential campaign, appointed his own chairman. Police clashed with more than 100 of Mr. Gordon’s supporters and more than 20 people were injured during the three-month standoff before Mr. Gordon agreed to honor a court ruling and step down.
On the podium to celebrate his anniversary this month, Subic’s new chairman, Felicito Payumo, sets the new tone. Mr. Gordon’s anniversaries featured parades, floats, beer and evening feasts. Today Mr. Payumo — a former congressman — hands out boxed lunches to a small group of workers and gives a speech about Subic’s new cargo crane and raises for government workers. Their salaries have more than doubled, although the Subic development is losing money for the first time.
Back in his office, Mr. Payumo stresses his achievements at Subic: more than 30 new projects, over 20,000 new jobs, more than $1 billion in exports in 1999 and rising tax collections. But local business executives refute the figures, pointing to the rash of closings and cutbacks, and add that Subic’s marketing has all but vanished. Even Mr. Payumo admits some problems. Companies have stopped paying their bills, leaving him with more than $30 million in back rent. “The infrastructure needs a little work,” he says, just as the electricity shuts down in his office.
Even the bats have grown surly. Every night the sky over Subic turns black with giant columns of fruit bats, which are forced to fly farther away for food because of increased logging in the base’s extensive forested areas.
“It’s a little eerie,” says Mr. Payumo. “But a lot of things here are better. Have you seen our new logo?”
Down the road, at the foot of a dense jungle where American soldiers once trained for Vietnam, Kenny Wang is fighting his own air war. The managing director for Acer Philippines, Mr. Wang oversees the biggest factory complex in Subic, employing 2,600 workers. The computer plants make more than one-third of Acer’s personal computers and about one-third of its notebook devices, accounting for 70% of Subic’s total exports. A recent decision by Mr. Estrada to help a businessman friend, however, has choked off Acer’s business.
Last year, Mr. Estrada suspended an air-rights pact with Taiwan, citing accusations by Philippine Airlines that its Taiwanese rivals were poaching passengers with cheaper fares. The decision, which ended direct commercial flights between the two countries, largely benefited Mr. Tan, the majority owner of Philippine Airlines. The rest of the Philippines has suffered: Taiwanese tourists no longer flock to Philippine beaches, electronics parts can’t make it to Philippine factories, and Philippine nurses and engineers have to take long and expensive routes to get to their contract jobs in Taipei. Both Philippine Airlines and the Estrada government say allegations of favoritism toward Mr. Tan are groundless.
Acer has been among the hardest hit. Most of the parts and motherboards for its personal computers come from Taiwan. Without direct flights, the components take twice as long to arrive, at twice the cost, making the plant uncompetitive. Mr. Wang has moved one PC-manufacturing line to China and two notebook lines to Taipei, cutting more than 1,000 jobs here. While some employees have been absorbed into the notebook division, Acer can’t move ahead with its planned expansions. The factory has so much empty space that workers have started playing soccer on the testing floor.
“We want this solved immediately,” says a frustrated Mr. Wang, who is eyeing China for expansion. “The environment here has become very political, and it’s not good for business.”
At happy hour at the Subic Bay Yacht Club, soft piano music drifts across the lounge. Giant picture windows offer a view of the harbor that America’s Seventh Fleet once called home and where, today, a cluster of leisure boats bobs in the rain. The $80 million club was part of a grand plan to turn Subic into a tourist haven. Yet now, the bar is empty, there isn’t a member in sight, and the guest-services manager is asleep.
“You know what the problem is?” says Jose Mari Vargas, the club’s managing director, as he rattles around the empty Skipper’s Grill. “Buzz. We need more buzz.”
And less terrorism. While President Ramos made peace with Islamic separatists and rural bandits, Mr. Estrada has taken a tough military stand. Last weekend, he launched an all-out war against Muslim guerrillas on the island of Jolo in an effort to rescue 19 hostages, including one American and two French journalists. The military strikes are continuing, and it isn’t clear whether the hostages are alive. The rebels had been gathering strength after collecting an estimated $15 million in ransom money paid by Libya, in what was widely seen as an effort to enhance relations with Europe.
The turmoil has battered tourism. Although Subic is flooded on weekends with visitors from Manila, the big-spending foreigners have stayed away. A casino at the nearby Legenda Hotel, once one of the most profitable in Asia, is quiet, and construction ended two years ago on a new hotel down the road.
When it opened three years ago, the yacht club expected 300,000 memberships; it has gotten about half that. The club is trying special “food days,” offering cuisine from, say, Mexico, and playing up its policy that members don’t need to own a boat. Corporate memberships used to cost more than $30,000; an advertisement in the Subic Chamber of Commerce newsletter offers one for $12,000.
Anna Lyn Dominguez stirs a pot of rice in her cramped, concrete home in Olongapo, the town just outside the gates of Subic. Ms. Dominguez, 27 years old, used to snap together phone circuits at a Thomson plant for $80 a week. The money supported her husband and two children, her parents and her sister. Earlier this year, Thomson moved its plant to China to become more competitive and Mrs. Dominguez lost her job.
“It’s getting hard to buy food,” she says. Unemployment in Olongapo, once among the lowest in the country, has soared to more than 22%. Small stores are closing and shop owners report a rapid rise in crime.
Political battles have made matters worse. Subic’s new boss, Mr. Payumo, hails from Bataan, a poor province on Subic’s southern border where he used to be a congressman. Olongapo remains the turf of Mr. Gordon, whose wife is mayor. After taking office, Mr. Payumo filled the Subic jobs center with workers from Bataan, replacing many from Olongapo. Subic companies are forced to hire first from the job center for available positions.
Stuart Allen, director of South Sea Resources, a treasure-hunting and diving company at Subic, wanted to hire a talented Web-site designer from Olongapo when he ran into trouble with Subic authorities. They required him to first consider a long list of candidates from the jobs center, including a Bataan bus driver. Although he eventually got permission to make the hire, the approval took weeks.
Mr. Payumo concedes that he is trying to boost employment for Bataan, but only “to correct the favoritism of Mr. Gordon toward Olongapo.” Gazing out his office window, Mr. Payumo points to another corrective measure, a marble statue honoring the 12 Philippine senators who helped drive out the U.S. military. Mr. Gordon’s monument was the Volunteer’s Wall, listing the names of the more than 20,000 volunteers who helped protect and nurture the Subic development throughout the 1990s.
The new display, called “Inang Laya — Mother Country,” features a robed woman releasing a small bird and 12 handprints set in marble, representing the senators. Mr. Payumo calls it a “symbol of the Philippine spirit and persistence.” Locals, however, have their own name: “The Outstretched Palms.”
Killem, I couldn’t agree with you more on equal treatment – the deeper question is who has exactly at the helm of SBMA when all the “stuff” happened”. After all, we can’t hold Gordon liable for stuff that Erap-appointee Payumo committed, or stuff that the Magsaysay-boys committed. Oh yes, am catching up with the dynamics between the Gordons and the Magsaysays.
In like manner, AP commentator TheArch stated
Among other claims according to my friend is that Gordon owns many establishments in Subic/Olongapo. And then about Koreans who built houses in Subic. They were charged, but they were relieved. Something to do with Gordon daw? And that Gordon is super rich in Subic?
I want to verify the veracity of these claims, if they are true or not. I want to convince my friend who was close to choosing Noynoy but withdrew because he thought he is too incompetent. (Buti nalang.) As of now, he is either choosing Gibo or Gordon, or none at all.
And TheArch, was kind enough to come up with an answer as well,
Thanks for the information. But then, I’m wondering if what PREDA was saying is actually true. I’ve read more articles from PREDA, and I noticed how much they really hate Gordon. But yeah, so far the only “corruption” stories I heard from Gordon only came from PREDA.
Or maybe not. I just read this note: http://www.facebook.com/notes/dick-gordon/who-is-fr-shay-cullen-of-preda-and-why-he-hates-dick-gordon/285100121134
Turns out Father Shay Cullen is a dick (haha), alright. And it turns out that PREDA is none other than a dirty organization masquerading as a welfare organization, quoting from some PEx user.
I wasn’t satisfied with the Payumo write-up, after all as killem mentioned, Payumo is gone. So, I went and found some more Richard Gordon links until I thought I stumbled into something solid and explosive. A commentor by the name of Ghil – had this to say:
Richard Gordon has a lots of pending cases in Olongapo City on behalf of his family. Olongapo City turned to be Gordon City for decades…a dictator. he started the volunterism in return to have job in SBMA for local residents, yet only his allies in politics got most of the job first. Nobody can open business in Olongapo City without a share of income or percentage to Gordon family. Chitter of all elections, most past elections in Olongapo had been chitted by this family, once they lost in the middle of counting, electric supply will shut down for at least 30 minutes, in half hour they make themselves win in thousands of vote count. Hes the one liable for smuggled cars from japan and korea, also drugs in SBMA. He knows who hates him, for sure will be jobless forever. His motto was, – “if you dont like my way, then leave Olongapo City” a word of dictator….Corruption- he got lots of project like roads in main town its perfect but always flood, but the main problem is the RIVER not the road… SBMA police are not legal police as we know, thyre just security guards or his private armys, they were not liscensed and no proper training in academy. Drugs crossed to Zambales by Taiwanese and murdered by Koreans, rape victims by GI’s poor people of Olongapo—- remains quit and silent for theres no news can pass to go out of Olongapo…. what happened now to Hanjin were there was dead workers almost every week. Those investors and criminals simply slap justice and Gordons familys face to leave free. People of the Philippines must know…..
PS…. Richard Gordon is a fuget, a gay, Ace Vergel can prove this and people of Olongapo knew it…
Wow, this is explosive. I may just have to go for broke with Perlas! Then I read some more, and to spare you the trouble, allow me to repost the rebuttals – and come to your own conclusion
December 2, 2009 at 6:23 pm
We have family businesses in Olongapo, and the Gordon’s don’t have any shares in our business. Puro kasinungalingan naman yan. Olongapo, just like any other place is a free City you can do whatever you want, there’s nobody there to dictate you… palagay ko hindi ka taga Olongapo…ang tunay na Batang Gapo, hindi sisirain ang sarili nyang bayan…
December 14, 2009 at 2:58 am
Ghil, all your accusations are baseless and are lacking of substance…I am from Olongapo and all your accuasations are not true. I have a business running for almost 10years now, how come I haven’t given Gordon family or Gordon croney any amount as share of my business income? In fact if not for SBMA that was started by Gordon, i will not have any clients at all because most of my clients are SBMA companies and people of Olongapo. Drugs are from Zambales yes its true, but who is rulling in Zambales? Magsaysays right? I just read from the news that one of the nephews of Magsasay’s house was raided because of drugs.So why blame Gordons for that?!Hanjins are being controlled and supervised by SBMA, so i think SBMA is responsible for that.
When Gordon asked the people of Olongapo to help him and to volunteer theirselves to be able to start SBMA, of course; he didn’t please 100% of the people(like every politicians, he has detractors also), only those who bellived him strived hard and exerted their efforts, in return; they were promised to be prioritzed when there are job vacancies qualified for them… and when jobs prospered and these people who volunteered were prioritized; what did his detractordsdid? He was again accused of giving jobs only to his allies?! See the logic? During Gordon’s term on SBMA, there are no imported vehicles being sold…it only started during Payumo’s term and i am very sure of that. Drugs in SBMA are rampant after his term, when the Magsasays infiltrated it.
Flooding in Olongapo is caused by the pinatubo sands that are blocking drainages and rivers; I agree it must be solved; but that doesn’t mean we have to stop buildig roads. Dick Gordon is not a fag…I really don’t know why you are so sickly mad about the guy when all your accusations are baseless and not true? Where are you getting all those infos? Do not beliver in here say…do the right research. Thanks God bless and good luck. And one more thing? What cases are you talking about? Aren’t you aware that 32 cases filled against him after his term as SBMA chairman was dissmissed because of lack of evidence? Perhaps you stopped reading the news after that. Bye!
January 8, 2010 at 12:43 am
Come on, Ghil! Are you from Olongapo? You are a very good fabricator of stories. If you’re from Olongapo, you should have known who is involved in car and shabu smuggling! Right? I hope you’re not a supporter of the other political rival of the Gordon’s? In fact, the people of Olongapo know who are involved in car smuggling and shabu! Read the news and you would easily find out those involved. Don’t twist facts! You must love your country and must show patriotism! If not for Gordon, where are we now? You should be proud of him! Don’t use black propaganda and character assasination here. Be honest! Nakakahiya ka sa mga taga-Olongapo. Pati patay na sinasama mo pa sa kwento.
taga Olongapo ako at proud ako sa mga nagawa ni Gordon. Tungkol sa mga bintang mo, tama yung mga comment ng mga nasa itaas ko, kung meron man mahilig maki-share sa business, mga MAGSAYSAY yon. bakit ko alam? Imbestigahan mo ang isang kumpanya sa SBMA, pangalan BAYSHORE GENERAL, Naval Mag. importer ng used cars at mixed rags (ukay2), ipagtanong mo kung kaninong business yon sa sentry guard ng Naval Mag. sasabihin sa’yo sa Magsaysay!
payo ko sa’yo kung may pagmamahal ka sa Olongapo, si daddy-daddy na lang ang gawin mong MAYOR, kesa ipaubaya sa Magsaysay ang pamamahala ng Olongapo! at least si daddy-daddy, piso lang ang katapat and take note “nanghihingi” siya, hindi nagnanakaw! di tulad ng kandidato mong sabungero!
suzanne arabelle urbano says:
February 16, 2010 at 5:13 am
ghil, do you even have proofs or evidences to support your accusations?? it’s okay to speak your mind but be sure to prove it.
Innuendos, Hearsay, Evidence and the Rule of Law
Most of the complaints, the ones that I have seen thus far are mostly innuendos, hearsay, and are not substantiated by evidence.
An innuendo is defined as:
- an indirect (and usually malicious) implication
- an indirect or subtle reference, esp one made maliciously or indicating criticism or disapproval; insinuation
Hearsay is defined as
- Unverified information heard or received from another; rumor.
- Law Evidence based on the reports of others rather than the personal knowledge of a witness and therefore generally not admissible as testimony.
- gossip (usually a mixture of truth and untruth) passed around by word of mouth rumor, rumour scuttlebutt, gossip, comment – a report (often malicious) about the behavior of other people; “the divorce caused much gossip”
- heard through another rather than directly; “hearsay information”; indirect – extended senses; not direct in manner or language or behavior or action; “making indirect but legitimate inquiries”; “an indirect insult”; “doubtless they had some indirect purpose in mind”; “though his methods are indirect they are not dishonest”; “known as a shady indirect fellow”
- rumour, talk, gossip, report, buzz, dirt (U.S. slang), word of mouth, tittle-tattle, talk of the town, scuttlebutt (slang, chiefly U.S.), idle talk, mere talk, on dit (French) Much of what was reported to them was hearsay.
A more detailed discussion on hearsay is found in Wikipedia .
Also, Chan Robles provides the low down on Hearsay in the Philippines under the Rules of Evidence. A few relevant excerpts:
- 5. TESTIMONIAL KNOWLEDGESec. 36.Testimony generally confined to personal knowledge; hearsay excluded. — A witness can testify only to those facts which he knows of his personal knowledge; that is, which are derived from his own perception, except as otherwise provided in these rules. (30a)6. EXCEPTIONS TO THE HEARSAY RULESec. 37.Dying declaration. — The declaration of a dying person, made under the consciousness of an impending death, may be received in any case wherein his death is the subject of inquiry, as evidence of the cause and surrounding circumstances of such death. (31a)Sec. 38.Declaration against interest. — The declaration made by a person deceased, or unable to testify, against the interest of the declarant, if the fact is asserted in the declaration was at the time it was made so far contrary to declarant’s own interest, that a reasonable man in his position would not have made the declaration unless he believed it to be true, may be received in evidence against himself or his successors in interest and against third persons. (32a)chanrobles virtua law librarySec. 39.Act or declaration about pedigree. — The act or declaration of a person deceased, or unable to testify, in respect to the pedigree of another person related to him by birth or marriage, may be received in evidence where it occurred before the controversy, and the relationship between the two persons is shown by evidence other than such act or declaration. The word “pedigree” includes relationship, family genealogy, birth, marriage, death, the dates when and the places where these fast occurred, and the names of the relatives. It embraces also facts of family history intimately connected with pedigree. (33a)Sec. 40.Family reputation or tradition regarding pedigree. — The reputation or tradition existing in a family previous to the controversy, in respect to the pedigree of any one of its members, may be received in evidence if the witness testifying thereon be also a member of the family, either by consanguinity or affinity. Entries in family bibles or other family books or charts, engravings on rings, family portraits and the like, may be received as evidence of pedigree. (34a)Sec. 41.Common reputation. — Common reputation existing previous to the controversy, respecting facts of public or general interest more than thirty years old, or respecting marriage or moral character, may be given in evidence. Monuments and inscriptions in public places may be received as evidence of common reputation. (35)Sec. 42.Part of res gestae. — Statements made by a person while a starting occurrence is taking place or immediately prior or subsequent thereto with respect to the circumstances thereof, may be given in evidence as part of res gestae. So, also, statements accompanying an equivocal act material to the issue, and giving it a legal significance, may be received as part of the res gestae. (36a)Sec. 43.Entries in the course of business. — Entries made at, or near the time of transactions to which they refer, by a person deceased, or unable to testify, who was in a position to know the facts therein stated, may be received as prima facie evidence, if such person made the entries in his professional capacity or in the performance of duty and in the ordinary or regular course of business or duty. (37a)
Sec. 44.Entries in official records. — Entries in official records made in the performance of his duty by a public officer of the Philippines, or by a person in the performance of a duty specially enjoined by law, are prima facie evidence of the facts therein stated. (38)
Sec. 45.Commercial lists and the like. — Evidence of statements of matters of interest to persons engaged in an occupation contained in a list, register, periodical, or other published compilation is admissible as tending to prove the truth of any relevant matter so stated if that compilation is published for use by persons engaged in that occupation and is generally used and relied upon by them therein. (39)
Sec. 46.Learned treatises. — A published treatise, periodical or pamphlet on a subject of history, law, science, or art is admissible as tending to prove the truth of a matter stated therein if the court takes judicial notice, or a witness expert in the subject testifies, that the writer of the statement in the treatise, periodical or pamphlet is recognized in his profession or calling as expert in the subject. (40a)
Sec. 47.Testimony or deposition at a former proceeding. — The testimony or deposition of a witness deceased or unable to testify, given in a former case or proceeding, judicial or administrative, involving the same parties and subject matter, may be given in evidence against the adverse party who had the opportunity to cross-examine him. (41a)
As pointed out in the Wikipedia,
“hearsay is information gathered by one person from another concerning some event, condition, or thing of which the first person had no direct experience. When submitted as evidence, such statements are called hearsay evidence. As a legal term, “hearsay” can also have the narrower meaning of the use of such information as evidence to prove the truth of what is asserted. Such use of “hearsay evidence” in court is generally not allowed. This prohibition is called the hearsay rule.
For example, a witness says “Susan told me Tom was in town”. Since the witness did not see Tom in town, the statement would be hearsay evidence to the fact that Tom was in town, and not admissible. However, it would be admissible as evidence that Susan said Tom was in town, and on the issue of her knowledge of whether he was in town.”
What am I driving at? I am saying if the glove does not fit, you must acquit. Yes, we can listen to the complaint, but if it is not substantiated by evidence, and is purely hearsay – it’s not worth dignifying it.
However, SCTEX, C-5, and the Hacienda Luisita Massacre is another matter – the paperwork is available, the evidence is substantiated – but there is no resolution – these are all still in Limbo. Ergo, they are fair game. In contrast, the complainst against Gordon are already resolved. You see in a country that follows the rule of law, both defendant and plaintiff need to abide by the rules equally.
Trial by Hearsay in Chip Tsao’s Nation of Servants
Ang hirap kasi sa Pinoy, pag natalo ang complaint for lack of evidence, andun magdadada, instead of bolstering up and shoring up his evidence. I have yet to see a successful investigation. More often than not, the complaint is dropped due to a technicality and lack of evidence. Most pinoy lawyers are good at filing complaints but have poor skills in backing up and substantiating their complaints – puro chop suey – all bark and no bite.
Example, etong si Tatang Tornilyo Causing – who keeps on asking Why is Gordon silent on Hello Garci. Excuse me, tatang Gordon was not silent – you have this habit of misrepresenting Gordon. Gordon is more intent on focusing on the pressing problems than to open a divisive issue. This is the same dilemma that Obama faced on whether he would open the cases to run after Dubya. Obama decided to focus on the more pressing problems rather than waste resources on running after Dubya. Instead he focused on plugging the holes to minimize reoccurence. In the case of Gordon, to do away with repeats of Hello Garci – he authorednd got passed – the Election Automation Bill.
For all of Noynoy’s talk – He couldn’t match the Dick’s performance and grasp of issues
The Hello Garci issue also is highly contentious given that wiretapping is illegal under Philippine laws. We cannot use illegally obtained evidence as a basis for removing a President. Perhaps we need to juggle up Tatang Tornilyo Berteni’s coconut:
5 SENATORS BLOCK REOPENING OF ‘HELLO GARCI’ PROBE
MANILA, AUGUST 29, 2007 (STAR) By Aurea Calica And Christina Mendez – Senators failed yesterday to decide whether to proceed with the inquiry of the “Hello, Garci” wiretap controversy after a deadlock on the issue of using the recorded conversations in the investigation.The senators were locked in debate over whether to move on with the investigation following questions raised by Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago on the propriety of using the contents of wiretapped conversations, which is illegal under the law.
Senators Joker Arroyo, Richard Gordon and Edgardo Angara also raised the possibility of bringing to the Supreme Court the issue of violation of the Anti-Wiretapping Law or Republic Act 4200.
Only one issue was settled: the investigation must be made by the Senate committee of the whole.
The four senators questioned the legality of using the wiretapped conversations in the investigation, pointing out that it is not allowed under the law and the Constitution.
After Sen. Panfilo Lacson presented the videotape of former military intelligence agent Vidal Doble confirming that he tapped the “Hello, Garci” conversation, Gordon raised the legality of using the contents of the recorded conversation as the focus of the Senate investigation.
This prompted the Senate committee on rules led by Sen. Francis Pangilinan to refer the matter before the whole body to constitute a committee of the peers.
In a privileged speech, Santiago said she is not against investigating the issue of wiretapping.
If the Senate finally admits the wiretapped tapes as evidence, Santiago said “the Senate would be an unwitting accessory to a crime.”
According to Santiago, the Senate can “pinpoint who is criminally liable” for ordering the wiretapping operations but cannot hear contents of the tapes.
Santiago also stressed the Senate must respect the law and refrain from using the contents of the wiretapped conversations as the focus of its investigation.
Santiago said the Senate has the duty to set an example for the House of Representatives not to utilize the contents of the wiretap conversations.
The House earlier initiated an investigation over the wiretap scandal in which the contents were made the basis of an impeachment complaint against President Arroyo.
“It is the duty of the Senate to educate the House on pressing points of constitutional law,” she said.
Angara, for his part, described the Hello Garci inquiry as a “re-hashed” issue.
He said the Senate is apparently stuck in a “time-warp” where some of his colleagues keep harping on the same issue.
“Some of us are no longer interested… it should be heard by just one committee,” Angara said.
Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile added the Supreme Court would not agree to the use of the contents of the wiretap recordings as evidence to prosecute any offense.
“It is very clear that it shall be inadmissible in any purpose in any proceedings,” Enrile said.
He said the Senate can investigate the wiretapping “without having to receive any portion or the whole of the tape because the public already knows about the (alleged) wiretapped conversations.”
“If your point is only to investigate the wiretapping… We will find out who ordered the wiretapping, where did they do it? Who are you? What unit did they belong to?” Enrile said.
Enrile stressed there is no need to play the tapes during the investigation since “any material contained in the tape is prohibited to be revealed.”
“That is an option that is available to test the issue and test the limits of RA 4200. But I think we can conduct the inquiry, hear the oral testimony but not that illegal material,” Enrile said.
Gordon earlier said the Senate is “in effect… trying the President” if the committee of the whole moves to pursue the hearing on the issue.
Gordon raised the possibility of bringing the issue before the Supreme Court.
“The test is to make it right, this might go to the Supreme Court. If we pursue it, then we will be wasting the time of the SC and we will be wasting the time of Congress,” he said.
Gordon said the Senate committee on defense chaired by Sen. Rodolfo Biazon should handle the investigation.
“As long as the recordings are not used as evidence, we want to investigate the military (personnel) who conducted the wiretap operations,” he said.
“It’s even coming from a polluted source,” said Gordon, apparently referring to Doble.
Gordon shared the view of former senator Francisco Tatad that forcing the issue would result in a constitutional crisis.
He also supported Santiago’s position that the issue may be brought to the Supreme Court if not properly resolved at the Senate.
Arguing the exceptions
The senators decided to just continue their discussions and hold their caucus today.
If there would be a collective agreement to move on the investigation, Senate President Manuel Villar Jr. said summons and invitations will be sent to resource persons who would testify, including Doble.
Lacson, for his part, said it is not an issue for him if the tapes were played or not as long as the hearings would push through.
Lacson said Doble has expressed willingness to testify and identify other people involved in the wiretapping operation.
He said Doble should be given protection from arrest after admitting to the wiretapping since he is the subject of a legislative inquiry,
According to Lacson, the supposed wiretapped conversations between President Arroyo and former election official Virgilio Garcillano should not be covered by RA 4200.
Lacson argued that the law “refers only to private conversations,” claiming the conversations between two public officials could not be considered private.
Sen. Jamby Madrigal also argued the constitutional right to privacy should always yield to public interest.
She said Congress has the right to inquire on matters of public interest under its power of oversight.
Madrigal even cited a Supreme Court ruling in her argument that the right of privacy or the “right to be let alone” like the right of free expression “is not an absolute right.”
She said that even in the United States, executive privilege was not upheld by the courts following the Watergate scandal that forced US President Richard Nixon to resign.
Arroyo, on the other hand, questioned the propriety of convening the Senate as a committee of the whole over the issue.
“Is Doble that important for the whole Senate to meet?” he asked.
Arroyo said the committee of the whole should not be trivialized for an issue that has been investigated many times before.
“The committee on rules, by another name, is called the steering committee. In fact, it is the most powerful committee of the Senate. Any question on the rules would have to be resolved by the committee on rules because a member of the Senate (Gordon) raised the question on whether we should proceed,” Arroyo said.
Arroyo said he was not blocking the investigation to cover up for those who might be guilty, but he also raised the legality of using the contents of the wiretapped conversation in the investigation.
He warned against “weakening the committees” as this might “weaken the institution itself.”
Arroyo said it was unfortunate that the issue now was being blown out of proportion.
“What is involved here is really the constitutional provision, and when a violation of constitutional provision is involved, there is a dictum, if there is a violation of constitutional rights, the court is ousted,” Arroyo said.
He said the Senate committee on rules should not abdicate its jurisdiction over the issue.
“The (rules) committee is the primary committee here. That is why the chairman of the committee (Pangilinan) is the majority leader, because it’s the premier committee, which settles disputes before we take up anything in the committees,” Arroyo pointed out.
With the objections raised by Arroyo and Enrile being overruled, the senators found themselves locked in almost two hours of deliberations over the issue.
Pangilinan, Aquilino Pimentel Jr., Lacson, Senators Francis Escudero, Alan Peter Cayetano and Manuel Roxas II voted to have the matter discussed by the committee of the whole since the matter had been referred to it.
The privilege speech of Lacson was earlier referred to the committee of the whole after several senators expressed interest in the matter.
Leading is Better than Pandering
Gordon and Teodoro, understand their law, and do not pander to get votes – unlike Aquino, Madrigal and company – who don’t know any better.
Noynoyistas like Tornilyo Berting complain about the disrespect for the law but they want us to elect people who break the law, WTF??? Anong klaseng Tornilyo… etse Attorney.. ito ba ang legal counsel ng NPC – it figures. Do these guys really know what they want (never mind that I want them to have a lobotomy or a brain transplant and replace it with the brain of the mule – mas bagay sa IQ nila).
Which brings us back to square 1.
Hearsays are out. Innuendos are out.. Ask the Magsaysay’s about Smuggling. Complaints dismissed due to lack of evidence. Which leaves NOTHING.. on Dick Gordon.
Darn, it’s so hard to put a good man down. Now I have to look at the sickening long list of achievements by Gordon and get sickened some more with the empty list of achievements by Noynoy. Tamad na. Sinungaling Pa. Walang Achievements? It’s so easy to prove.
Hay naku, I just can’t put Gordon down try as much as I could.
As a buddy dishes it –
“What use would you have for money, heart, brain, appeal, or even spirituality without a Dick to actually get things done?”
“Dick can make everyone happy.”
“Dick is the complete ‘package’.”
“Dick is the real thing. The rest are just dick-extenders.”
and if I may add,
Underpromise, overdeliver. Speak clearly and whack em p*ssies with a big dick 😛