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Reflections

“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, March 18, 2017

Will The Filipino People Allow The Greedy Marcoses To Fool Them Again?

“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. 
Fool me three times, shame on both of us.”
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
Ferdinand Marcos : "He might have started as a hero 
but ended up as a crook.” 
Singapore's Former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew
"Over the next decade, Marcos’s cronies and immediate family would tiptoe back into the country, one by one – always to the public’s revulsion and disgust, though they showed that there was nothing that hidden money and thick hides could not withstand." From Singapore Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew’s book “From Third World to First”
 "There are no tyrants where there are no slaves."
-- José Rizal, El Filibusterismo
“(Returning to) Malacañang would be a great help”
How  The Marcoses’ Accumulated Their Wealth and Hid It
 From Facts and Details
Catherine A.Traywick wrote in Foreign Policy, “According to a World Bank report, the Marcoses managed to accumulate their wealth through a number of channels: by using their political power to take over large private companies, creating state-owned monopolies, skimming off international aid, and directly raiding the public treasury. They then laundered their ill-gotten gains through shell corporations, eventually investing it in real estate and depositing it into offshore accounts. [Source: Catherine A. Traywick, Foreign Policy, January 16, 2014]
"You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time." - Abraham Lincoln 
“Hello Mr. Zeibel? Yes, my name is Jane Ryan—Mr. Saunders and I would like to make a deposit…”
Ferdinand often used the name "William Saunders" and Imelda used "Jane Ryan" in accounts. A Philippine senator told the International Herald Tribune, “Marcos had a brilliant mind. He hid his wealth through layers and layers of corporations and trusts.” In 1999, Imelda told the Philippine Daily Inquirer that Marcos entrusted $12.8 billion worth of blue chip stocks to his cronies.
From ICIJ
Records show late dictator's oldest child, now a Philippine provincial governor, didn't disclose British Virgin Islands trust in asset declarations required for public officials.
Newly uncovered documents link Maria Imelda Marcos Manotoc, the eldest child of the late Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos and now a senior political figure in her own right, to two secretive offshore trusts and an offshore company.
The hardworking and popular provincial governor — widely known as Imee Marcos — was one of the beneficiaries of the Sintra Trust, which was formed in June 2002 in the British Virgin Islands, financial records uncovered by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) show.  Other beneficiaries were Imee Marcos’ adult sons with estranged husband Tomas Manotoc: Ferdinand Richard Michael Marcos Manotoc, Matthew Joseph Marcos Manotoc, and Fernando Martin Marcos Manotoc.
It’s unclear whether the trust remains active. The records obtained by ICIJ show the trust was still active at least as recently as 2010.
The documents show that Imee Marcos was also a financial advisor for the Sintra Trust as well as for a company in which the Sintra Trust was a shareholder, ComCentre Corporation, which was formed in January 2002 in the BVI and is still in operation. The records also show she was a “master client” for the M Trust, formed July 1997 in Labuan, Malaysia, and closed July 2009. Philippines law requires government officials to disclose their assets no matter where they’re held, and Imee Marcos’s disclosure statements do not list the three offshore entities. It is not known what assets they hold, but one Sintra Trust document refers to a bank account with United Overseas Bank Limited, a financial institution headquartered in Singapore. Another record related to ComCentre refers to an account at HSBC.
The Philippines’ Presidential Commission on Good Government is eager to find out if the entities connected to Imee Marcos might contain some of the estimated $5 billion that her father allegedly amassed through corruption. He too held offshore accounts, which the Philippine government has sought to freeze.
This detailed list of corruption and plunder of the Ferdinand Marcos, Imelda and family was compiled by Asian Journal.
September 1976, the Marcoses bought their first property in the U.S. – a condo in the exclusive Olympic Towers on Fifth Avenue in New York . Five months later they would also buy the three adjoining apartments, paying a total of $4,000,000.00 for the four and using Antonio Floirendo’s company, The Aventures Limited in Hong Kong, as front for these purchases.
October 13, 1977. Today, after addressing the UN General Assembly, Imelda celebrated by going shopping and spending $384,000 including $50,000 for a platinum bracelet with rubies; $50,000 for a diamond bracelet; and $58,000 for a pin set with diamonds.
The day before, Vilma Bautista, one of her private secretaries, paid $18,500 for a gold pendant with diamonds and emeralds; $9,450 for a gold ring with diamonds and emeralds; and $4,800 for a gold and diamond necklace.
November 2, 1977. Still at her shopping spree, Imelda paid $450,000 for a gold necklace and bracelet with emeralds, rubies, and diamonds; $300,000 for a gold ring with emeralds and diamonds; and $300,000 for a gold pendant with diamonds, rubies, and thirty-nine emeralds.
July 1978. After a trip to Russia, Imelda arrived in New York and immediately warmed up for a shopping spree. She started with paying $193,320 for antiques, including $12,000 for a Ming Period side table; $24,000 for a pair of Georgian mahogany Gainsborough armchairs; $6,240 for a Sheraton double-sided writing desk; $11,600 for a George II wood side table with marble top – all in the name of the Philippine consulate to dodge New York sales tax.
“When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love has always won. There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible but in the end, they always fall – think of it – always.”
Gandhi