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“How shall freedom be defended? By arms when it is attacked by arms, by truth when it is attacked by lies, by faith when it is attacked by authoritarian dogma. Always, in the final act, by determination and faith.” ― Archibald MacLeish

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“When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it--always.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

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“How shall freedom be defended? By arms when it is attacked by arms, by truth when it is attacked by lies, by faith when it is attacked by authoritarian dogma. Always, in the final act, by determination and faith.”

― Archibald MacLeish

Saturday, July 5, 2014

EQ Exclusive: The Philippine "Unofficial" Museum of Political Corruption

“The people do not complain because they have no voice; do not move because they are lethargic, and you say that they do not suffer because you have not seen their hearts bleed.” 
― José Rizal, Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not)
"This nation will be great again!" FM
Ferdinand Emmanuel Edralin Marcos, Sr. (September 11, 1917 – September 28, 1989) was a Filipino strongman politician who was President of the Philippines from 1965 to 1986. He was a lawyer, member of the Philippine House of Representatives (1949–1959) and a member of the Philippine Senate (1959–1965). He was Senate President from 1963 to 1965.
His administration was marred by massive authoritarian corruption, despotism, nepotism, political repression, and human rights violations.
In 1983, his government was accused of being involved in the assassination of his primary political opponent, Benigno Aquino, Jr. Public outrage over the assassination served as the catalyst for the People Power Revolution in February 1986 that led to his removal from power and eventual exile in Hawaii. From Wikipedia
Head of Government: Ferdinand Marcos
Country/Term of Office: President of Philippines, 1972-86 
Allegedly Embezzled: $5 billion to $10 billion
GDP Per Capita: $912
Source: Transparency International, Global Corruption Report 2004
World's Ten Most Corrupt Leaders
“Some are saying I should resign, some want me impeached, some say I should go on vacation, ... This is my advice: They are the ones who should go on vacation. They should come here and be with people who don't have land and witness the poverty here.” ERAP
Joseph "Erap" Ejército Estrada (born José Marcelo Ejército; April 19, 1937) is a Filipino politician who served as the 13th President of the Philippines from 1998 until 2001. Estrada was the first person in the present Fifth Republican period to be elected both President and Vice-President. 
Estrada was elected President in 1998 with a wide margin of votes separating him from the other challengers, and was sworn into the presidency on June 30, 1998. 
In 2007, Estrada was sentenced by the special division of the Sandiganbayan to reclusión perpetua for the plunder of stealing $80 million from the government and was sentenced a lifetime in prison, but was later granted pardon by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. From Wikipedia
Head of Government: Joseph Estrada
Country/Term of Office: President of Philippines, 1998-2001
Allegedly Embezzled: $78 million to $80 million
GDP Per Capita: $912
Source: Transparency International, Global Corruption Report 2004
"The days of plunder are over." Gloria Arroyo
Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (born April 5, 1947) is a Filipino politician who served as the 14th President of the Philippines from 2001 to 2010, as the 12th Vice President of the Philippines from 1998 to 2001, and is currently a member of the House of Representatives representing the 2nd District of Pampanga. She was the country's second female president (after Corazón Aquino), and the daughter of former President Diosdado Macapagal. Arroyo is also the first duly elected female Vice President of the Philippines.
After Estrada was accused of corruption, she resigned her cabinet position as Secretary of Social Welfare and Development and joined the growing opposition to the president, who faced impeachment. Estrada was soon forced from office by the EDSA Revolution of 2001, and Arroyo was sworn into the presidency by Chief Justice Hilario Davide, Jr. on January 20, 2001. She was elected to a full six-year presidential term in the controversial May 2004 Philippine elections, and was sworn in on June 30, 2004. 
On November 18, 2011, Arroyo was arrested following the filing of criminal charges against her for electoral fraud. She was held at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center in Quezon City under charges of electoral sabotage.[2][3] but released on bail in July 2012. She was re-arrested while in hospital on charges of misuse of $8.8 million in state lottery funds in October 2012.From Wikipedia
Question: A Member of either house of Congress may be expelled by their fellow Members. For a Member to be expelled, how many of the total number of Members of a house must concur with the expulsion.
Answer: Two-thirds. Article VI, Section 16.3 states, "Each House may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds of all its Members, suspend or expel a Member." So, if the Senate wants to expel a member, 16 of the 24 Senators must agree to expel that Senator.
What's the price of a reputation?
Enrile: P172.834 million
Estrada: P183.795 million
 Revilla:P224.512 million
From Inquirer:
Seven weeks before President Benigno Aquino III makes his annual report to the nation, the Ombudsman on Friday indicted Senators Jinggoy Estrada, Juan Ponce Enrile and Ramon Revilla Jr., businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles and five others in the Sandiganbayan for plunder over the P10-billion pork barrel scam.
It was the biggest and highest profile case to be brought by the administration of President Aquino to court since he was elected to office in 2010 on an anticorruption platform.
These nine individuals constitute the first batch to be formally charged by the Ombudsman since the Department of Justice and the National Bureau of Investigation filed plunder charges against them and 29 other people last year.
The three senators and Napoles, the alleged brains behind the pork barrel scam, and five other people stockpiled a combined total of P581 million in kickbacks through the diversion of pork barrel funds to bogus foundations from 2004 to 2012.
Malacañang and the Senate leadership viewed the indictment of the three senators for plunder “as a step forward” in calling to account the people responsible for the massive fraud  that angered the nation after the Inquirer exposed it in a series of reports last year.
Plunder Cases 
(From GMA News)
After triggering a massive protest and the scrapping of lawmakers' discretionary funds last year, the alleged pork barrel scam has now reached the courts. More than a year after the scandal broke out, criminal cases were filed against personalities accused of involvement in the anomaly, including alleged scam brains Janet Lim-Napoles, Senators Ramon Bong Revilla Jr., Jinggoy Estrada, and Juan Ponce Enrile.
  • Revilla and Estrada are detained at Unit One of the PNP Custodial Center. 
  • Senator Juan Ponce Enrile was temporarily confined at the Philippine National Police (PNP) General Hospital at Camp Crame following his surrender, police said Friday. 
“To be happy does not mean to indulge in foolishness!” 
― José Rizal, Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not)
Juan Ponce Enrile, later Juanito Ponce (Tagalog pronunciation: [huˈan ponˈse enˈɾile]; born Juanito Furagganan on 14 February 1924), is a Filipino politician. As a protégé of President Ferdinand Marcos, he served as Justice Secretary and then Defense Minister under the Marcos regime. He later became one of the leaders (along with General Fidel V. Ramos) of the 1986 People Power Revolution that drove Marcos from power and into exile. Enrile has continued to be a prominent politician since then; he was Senate President from November 2008 until his resignation on June 5, 2013. from Wikipedia
José Pimentel Ejército, Jr. (born February 17, 1963[1]), better known as Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada, is a Filipino politician and former film actor who has been a member of the Senate of the Philippines since 2004. He was born to Joseph Estrada, who was President of the Philippines from 1998 to 2001, and former senator Luisa Estrada; he is also the half-brother of politician Joseph Victor Ejercito. From Wikipedia
Ramón Bong Revilla, Jr. (born José Marie Mortel Bautista on September 25, 1966, is a Filipino actor, television presenter, politician, and Senator of Philippines. In 2009, he legally changed his last name to Bong Revilla. From Wikipedia