Category: honasan

honasan’s “other purposes” #censorship

check out senate bill no. 3244 sponsored by senator honasan also known as “gringo” also known as coup plotter in the times of marcos and cory.

it is called An Act To Decriminalize Libel And For Other Purposes [sic].  indeed it seeks to decriminalize libel, great! BUT BUT BUT it also provides that no mass media practitioner can practice his/her profession unless he/she is a member of a professional organization that is registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)!!!

read lawyer mel sta. ana’s Once again, government’s intrusive mindset threatens the press – and bloggers.

The constitutionally repugnant objective of this prohibitory bill is clear. Journalists or news-reporters cannot print, broadcast or publish their thoughts, ideas, opinions, gathered-news or other works, whether friendly or critical, significant or trivial, indifferent or provocative, conscientious or mindless, unless they are certified members of an organization allowed by government to exist. Simply stated, the general rule is no practice of journalism and no news-reporting activities shall be allowed if there is no membership in a government-approved and registered media organization.

… What is more frightening is that the bill explicitly makes a prohibition on “practitioners of mass communications” unqualifiedly. It expansively encompasses, not only journalists and news-reporters, but everybody in the profession: photojournalists, broadcasters, commentators, artists, printers, publishers, editors, writers, news-readers and even cameramen/women involved in mass dissemination of news and opinions.

… Senate Bill No. 3244, if it becomes law, seriously prejudices not only the journalists, news reporters, bloggers and other practitioners of mass media; it further prejudices the public as a whole. It will deprive the public of information necessary to make important choices.

wow, ha.  so if the honorable senators pass this bill into law, i cannot write blogs or books or even letters to the editor anymore because i do not belong, i choose not to be beholden, to any registered media org. that has the blessings of the government?

i googled honasan’s SB 3244 and found that it’s introduced by an explanatory note where honasan quotes Article 19 of the UN’s International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that the Phlippines ratified in 1986.

1. Everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference.

2. Everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art or through any other media of his choice.

3. The exercise of the rights provided for in paragraph 2 of this article carries with it special duties and responsibilities. It may therefore be subject to certain restrictions, but these shall only be such as are provided by law and are necessary:

a. For respect of the rights or reputations of others; [bold mine]
b. For the protection of national security or of public order, or of public health or morals.

there’s more from honasan, but nothing anywhere that says that the suppression of independent (read, non-establishment) thinking and writing is the way to achieve 3a or 3b.

very clearly, to me anyway, the real concern is 3a, keeping their — the legislators’, among other government officials’ — reputations unsullied by unsympathetic or unimpressed critics, mainstream and online.  BUT BUT BUT the only way to achieve that is by getting their acts together, start truly caring, and acting, for nation, as promised, so that there is no cause for criticism.

sabi nga ni socrates, whom enrile threatens to translate a la sotto/kennedy:

“For if you think that by killing men you can avoid the accuser censoring your lives, you are mistaken; that is not a way of escape which is either possible or honorable; the easiest and the noblest way is not to be crushing others, but to be improving yourselves.” [plato writing in “Apology” via marck ronald rimorin)

oh, and may i ask senator honasan, does SB 3244 mean that what senator enrile did in his memoir — like playing fast and loose with the reputations of senator salonga and cardinal sin by calling them liars when they can’t defend themselves anymore — would no longer be allowed?  and would enrile then have to register as a mass media practitioner if he’s serious about writing those two more books on his life as a lawyer and his life as a senator?

just asking.

honasan, kapunan, enrile, finally!

gringo honasan was first introduced to the edsa crowds and the press on day 4, feb 25, around 4 p.m. enrile and ramos and the reformists were preparing to leave camp crame to reclaim camp aguinaldo across edsa.

With the Marcos regime crumbling by the hour, Enrile introduced Gringo Honasan to a jubilant crowd outside their headquarters as the man who precipitated the President’s fall.

Honasan denied plotting to kill Marcos and told the crowd: “We did not plan any coup d’etat or assasination. Our action was purely for the purpose of survival.”

of course honasan had to deny it, after enrile himself had denied it on radio veritas the night before.   enrile however confirmed the coup plot 14 years later, in 2000:

enrile finally admitted in a radio interview that indeed he and his men had plotted a violent takeover of the marcos regime that was pre-empted by people power [philippine star 28 feb 2000 page 2].

and so another 11 years later, hallelujah!  honasan and fellow conspirator eduardo “red” kapunan, leaders of RAM in 86, finally admit that they had planned a “military operation” but they were found out, and so they ended up making a last stand in camp aguinaldo.   red kapunan in anc’s strictly politics last tuesday, and senator honasan in his blogpost I remember Edsa:

RAM’s plan was to conduct a military operation against the very seat of political power, with a handful of specially trained men, and against overwhelming odds, and present those accountable alive and unharmed to the Filipino people for judgment. We were willing to die to show the Filipino people, and the world, that there were still professional soldiers who truly loved their country. That would pave the way for a National Unification Council composed of credible representatives of Philippine society, including then presidential candidate Corazon C. Aquino. The council would oversee the country’s return to full democracy, with institutional and systemic reforms in place.

The plan was discovered, and a consensus was reached among RAM members and then Minister of National Defense Juan Ponce Enrile. RAM would go to Camp Aguinaldo at 2 pm on February 22, 1986, where the officers recruited by RAM all over the country could rally and extend physical and symbolic support to Minister Enrile, RAM, and then Gen. Fidel Ramos, who joined them later.

why did gringo, and enrile, deny the coup plot back in feb 86?

Enrile’s and RAM’s number-one priority was to drum up as much public support as they could. To do this, they had to scuttle any impression that they had been planning a coup d’etat.

If people realized that Enrile had been planning to stage a coup and then impose a junta, most of them certainly would not have been supportive. Enrile and his men had to cover their plans and portray themselves as victims.

this is important because it confirms my reading, and cory’s, that when they planned that coup set for feb 23 sunday, it was to preempt cory’s bid for the presidency.   kumbaga, it was a race to malacanang, una-unahan na lang.   and when they were found out and decided to make that last stand in camp aguinaldo, it was still in the hope of getting the support of the people, offering them an alternative to cory, and of course, of ending the boycott that must have been costing enrile, himself a close crony, next only to danding, millions of bucks everyday.

but because they had denied the coup plot, people got the impression that they were defecting to cory’s side.   and so the people went to edsa chanting cory’s name and wearing waving cory’s colors.   enrile didn’t stand a chance.

on the other hand, if they had admitted to the coup plot and came clean with enrile’s hopes of replacing marcos, he being more qualified than the housewife, no doubt the people would have stayed home and watched from the sidelines as ver wiped them out.

in the end enrile made the right decision, to support the new president, in exchange for… ummm i’m speculating here, but my educated guess is, in exchange for an end to the boycott, and immunity from suit and sequestration of any kind post edsa.

in Some Are Smarter Than Others: The History of Marcos’ Crony Capitalism (New York: Aletheia Publications, 1991) Ricardo Manapat writes:

When the post-Marcos administration organized the Presidential Commission for Good Government (PCGG) to recover the wealth stolen by Marcos and his cronies, Jovito Salonga, the head of the commission, refused to file charges against Enrile or even attempt to investigate him… Testifying before a committee of the Constitutional Commission attempting to draft a new constitution, Salonga, in a very carefully-worded testimony befitting a crafty lawyer, said that there was “no evidence” that “would warrant” the investigation of Enrile, that his name does not appear on any of the documents that PCGG had in its possession, and that there were no complaints against him. Salonga then proceeded to offer Enrile, then still chairman of the United Coconut Planters Bank, five board seats in the multimillion bank as it was being reorganized. [page198]

the senate president said last tuesday that he’s writing his memoirs.

Enrile said he had begun writing his memoirs, noting that there have been “many exaggerations, distortions and omissions” in the accounts written about the events leading to and about EDSA I.

“Now, I think it is about time that, as one of the initiators of the people power revolution in 1986, I finally tell the true events and circumstances that led to the restoration of freedom and democracy in our land,” he said.

yes, sir, please do.   yours is truly an important story that needs telling.