The 27th Law: Playing on People’s Need to Believe

Back in the Dark and Middle Ages, the Church was practically the State. It maintained a firm and oppressive grip on the lives of the people, bending them to its allegedly holy will. People suffered and were persecuted, and all of these were done in the guise of God’s divine providence. Faith became the sharp sword that stabbed the dissenters, people who dared think outside the box. The cross became the symbol of the Church’s irrevocable authority over the lowly citizens.

It could be said that the dark times of civilization, where holiness is associated with a seemingly insatiable appetite for bloodshed and social supremacy, is now a thing of the very distant past. Such horrors can only be found in the texts of history, to remind mankind of how vicious it became in the past. However, somehow, that curious tendency of man to invoke religious fervor to further his interests lingered on and stuck to the human psyche long after the olden times.

History documented the likes of Francesco Giuseppe Borri and Michael Schüppach and their cunning as they manipulated countless gullible folk into believing their gimmicks, ranging from revelatory prophecies from angels and God, dubious healing rituals, even alchemy, which sparked the frenzied pursuit of the fabled elixir of life and the conversion of base metal to pure gold. People willingly, even desperately, surrendered their will to men of such wit and deceit, since they so conveniently played with their deepest fantasies and desires.

Why are these historical pieces being invoked in this article? Unsurprisingly, the Philippines exhibits the very symptoms of religious infection. But like Borri and Schüppach, religious manipulation is not limited to the Church; it does not hold a monopoly on the concept of religion, or, to be more precise, of a cult.

I now turn to my main political reference: the 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene. Here we discuss this particular law in detail; the twenty-seventh law.

Law 27: Play on Peoples Need to Believe to Create a Cultlike Following

People have an overwhelming desire to believe in something. Become the focal point of such desire by offering them a cause, a new faith to follow. Keep your words vague but full of promise, emphasize enthusiasm over rationality and clear thinking. Give your new disciples rituals to perform, ask them to make sacrifices on your behalf. In the absence of organized religion and grand causes, your new belief system will bring you untold power.

Needless to say, the twenty-seventh law explains the power that can be derived by imprisoning people in some sort of a fantastic belief system; a cult, one might say. So who am I accusing of using this clever trick on us? My, accusation might be a strong word. After all, I’m still open to the possibility of inadvertent causation. Nevertheless, an institution in our country has so subtly ingrained itself into the minds of our fellow Filipinos… the government.

The Source

For those who find the idea ludicrous, I request that you tag along for the moment. The next, and obvious, course of action we must undertake is to substantiate my claim. We shall do this systematically. First and foremost, what is the catalyst? What is this that made many Filipinos gravitate towards the government’s influence? This question is too easy to answer, almost rhetorical, for this catalyst, the source of the Filipinos’ devotion to the State, is practically the same with the others who fell for Borri and Schüppach’s charms; the desire for miracles.

What do Filipinos think of the first EDSA revolution? It was a spectacular moment. People from all walks of life united for a single purpose; the ostracism of an oppressive president who for so long made them suffer. It was spearheaded by the benevolent Cory Aquino, who then subsequently replaced the old president, and quite literally, gave the Philippines democracy. It was mythical, it was magical… it was a miracle.

Every now and then Filipinos tend to associate good things with miracles, something that just cannot be explained. An unexpected win from a lottery is a miracle. A dirt-poor lad who grew up to become the People’s Champ is a miracle. Imaginative Filipinos can make anything miraculous. And then Filipinos witnessed the economy take a nose-dive since Cory. Unemployment rose together with crime rest. Social unrest became more and more pronounced. Thick-faced politicians plundered our resources at the expense of our people’s livelihood. It was dystopia, to say the least. The Filipinos, wrought with tragedy after tragedy, can only hope for, well, a miracle.

And then it, or rather, he appeared. Vowing to bring the corrupt officials, most especially Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, to justice, Noynoy Aquino embodied everything the Filipinos desperately prayed for; someone who’ll bring swift justice to the evil ones, someone who will guide everyone to a better future. Noynoy was, in every aspect, the hero… the miracle, Philippines hoped for. And so began the Philippine state cult, the perpetuation of the Aquino-Cojuangco glory.

The System

We now proceed to the system of this cult. The clan has started the power game; how will they maintain it? The 48 Laws of Power explained things quite clearly and entertainingly for my taste, and I shall take the liberty of sharing it with you.

The Science of Charlatanism or How to Create a Cult in Five Easy Steps

Step 1: Keep it Vague; Keep it Simple. To create a cult you must first attract attention. This you should do not through actions, which are too clear and readable, but through words, which are hay and deceptive. Your initial speeches, conversations, and interviews must include two elements: on the one hand the promise of something great and transformative, and on the other a total vagueness. This combination will stimulate all kinds of hay dreams in your listeners, who will make their own connections and see what they want to see.

Noynoy Aquino, with the possible—no, probable inclusion of the local oligarchy, observed religiously. Recall how Noynoy captivated the oppressed Filipinos with his heart-warming speech back in the elections. How he promised change in his daang matuwid, how he boldly claimed that kung walang korap, walang mahirap (if there are no corrupt officials, there will be no poor) how he will strike down the violators of the law, and how he will carry on the legacy of his much-beloved parents. Noynoy provided the ultimate rhetoric; simple, straightforward, and complete devoid of substance, specifically of action, and the people rabidly bought into the rap. People started dreaming; here is a man who can finally liberate us from the clutches of the corrupt government officials, and who will bring us lasting economic prosperity. There goes the first step.

Step 2: Emphasize the Visual and the Sensual over the Intellectual. Once people have begun to gather around you, two dangers will present themselves: boredom and scepticism. Boredom will make people go elsewhere; scepticism will allow them the distance to think rationally about whatever it is you are offering, blowing away the mist you have artfully created and revealing your ideas for what they are. You need to amuse the bored, then, and ward off the cynics.

As soon as Noynoy made himself publicly known together with his advocacy for the betterment of Filipinos, what things suddenly popped out and boosted his popularity?

L for Lethargy! No wait--
If you look closely, it’s a yellow ribbon.
If you look more closely, the ribbon is also a dove. Cute!

The symbols did wonderfully for the Aquino-Cojuangco cause. People need not hear what Noynoy actually has to say; the symbols spoke for the entire cause! The L gesture means laban (fight); a fight against corruption and poverty! The dove means peace, which means Noynoy is after peace! He intends to lead us to an economic paradise where we can live in harmony! The ribbon, well, I’m not sure what that means (perhaps “almost infinity”?) but who cares? It’s sure to be something good, and I’m definitely putting my money on this guy. In effect, the symbols became the explanation for Noynoy’s candidacy; irrevocable arguments on why you should vote him, and why critics are just jealous cynics who are shamelessly plotting to bring Noynoy down. Suffice to say that these symbols hit many birds with one stone.
Confucius once said, “signs and symbols rule the world, not words nor laws.” Well, although Noynoy didn’t exactly rule the world, he definitely ruled the people’s hearts and desires, and that’s good enough, as far as daang matuwid is concerned.

Step 3: Borrow the Forms of Organized Religion to Structure the Group. Your cultlike following is growing; it is time to organize it. Find a way both elevating and comforting. Organized religions have long held unquestioned authority for large numbers of people, and continue to do so in our supposedly secular age. And even if the religion itself has faded some, its forms still resonate with power. The lofty and holy associations of organized religion can be endlessly exploited.

The Aquino party didn’t exactly fulfil this after they have gathered their loyal followers; they have fulfilled this step before Noynoy even began his presidential campaign. And what better entity can be utilized to accomplish this objective than the Roman Catholic Church itself? In fact, the Aquino-Cojuangco clan did not just borrow the system; it incorporated the RCC into its cultish system. Remember that EDSA is always described in a holy way; it was God’s will, it was supported by the Church, and stuff like that. Most notable was the canonization of Cory Aquino to crystallize her legacy. Yes, Cory being a saint; very Catholic, and this just proves how the government cleverly incorporated the enduring Filipino faith to further its causes, without eliciting much objection from its loyal followers. After all, how could they, when their Church is on the side of Noynoy and friends?

Whenever Noynoy moved, it was as if he was guided by God, as well as her heroic parents, Ninoy and Cory. Isn’t it thus natural, that we leave our individual fates in the hands of the balding messiah?

Step 4: Disguise Your Source of Income. Your group has grown, and you have structured it in a churchlike form. Your coffers are beginning to fill with your followers’ money. Yet you must never be seen as hungry for money and the power it brings. It is at this moment that you must disguise the source of your income.

Fulfilling this requirement is fairly easy and straightforward; after all, the state (Aquino administration) and the church it allies with (Roman Catholic Church) are both known for their ability to generate money, via taxation and donations, respectively.

We all know how the Church acts like our tithes are like investments for heaven to secure some kind of a housing deal with God (the priests make it look that way), and how people are more than willing to part ways with their earnings. Meanwhile, we know how taxation is of crucial importance to the maintenance of a government; it maintains non-profitable social apparatuses like public roads, courts, prisons, traffic lights, among others, and they are a source of revenue to pay government employees, as well as of bailouts in times of deep economic crises. And how, given its important nature, it is easily exploitable.

Where do you think Noynoy got his Porsche? Where do you think priests get their money for around-the-world trips and cars? Heh, lame question, right? Interestingly, most Noynoy supporters are mum about the issue, and prefer believing that Noynoy is on the right track, that these things do not really matter. Just understand his symbols and you will see! The L sign, the dove and the unfathomable yellow ribbon, they hold the answers!

Step 5: Set Up an Us-Versus-Them Dynamic. The group is now large and thriving, a magnet attracting more and more particles. If you are not careful, though, inertia will set in, and time and boredom will demagnetize the group. To keep your followers united, you must now do what all religions and belief systems have done; create an us-versus-them dynamic.

This is the most important piece of the religious puzzle, the single thing that can keep religionists together throughout the years, and it seems Aquino’s lot has done this quite beautifully. Put the blame on Arroyo and her administration for anything bad that’s happening in the economy. Persecute Corona, a key figure in his predecessor’s administration to win his people’s favor. Set the previous administration as the absolute evil, and set his own as the knights of light that will vanquish the darkness that plagues this wretched nation; nothing could be more inspirational.

As expected, support poured into Noynoy like a waterfall. People were touched; finally, someone who will stand his ground against the oppressors! Nothing else mattered; here was the man who is fulfilling every frustration Filipinos felt in the past… here was the man who is satisfying their depravities! Here was the man who will fulfil his promises, and so what he’ll do is right… no matter what. Of course we know how his administration flunked horribly in prosecuting Chief Justice Renato Corona, but the fact remains that he was able to maintain a stronghold of unswerving faith despite his blunders; such is the sheer power of our religion-state, masterfully established by the Aquino-Cojuangco clan and its lackeys.

Intentional or not? What does it matter, when the way Noynoy and his lot structured the government mirrors that of the teachings of the twenty-seventh law so perfectly, it warrants sheer recognition? Congratulations, Noynoy, commendable performance. It seems that your lot does know a thing or two about power; and what splendid job of perpetuating the influence of your clan for so long! Such feats deserve an entry in the books of political philosophy.

Here, we have the very manifestations of the Dark Ages, only it’s not mainly about bloodshed, and more about intellectual bankruptcy. For those who look for real-world illustrations of the twenty-seventh law, look no further than the Philippines. Now, an interesting question is posed; what will we do about it?

Really, it couldn’t be more obvious.

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About Arche

I’m just throwing ideas around. I also love coffee.

Post Author: Arche

I’m just throwing ideas around. I also love coffee.

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81 Comments on "The 27th Law: Playing on People’s Need to Believe"

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Domingo Arong
Guest
The first and only “peaceful” opportunity to do something about the early “manifestations of the Dark Ages” that you refer to would be during the mid-term electoral exercise slated next year, 2013. For it is during elections that any “fantastic belief system” (or “cult”) would-be messiahs of PNoy’s kind peddle for support is decided by the votes of a democratic majority, following a political campaign where issues, even including the non-political, are aired and thoroughly discussed. Then, there are the term limits that would-be messiahs would need to reckon with; PNoy’s “lame-duck” presidential 6-year term with no re-election, in fact,… Read more »
Arche
Guest
Good point, Mr. Domingo Arong. But I believe the law is not solely concerned with the perpetuation of power, time-wise. Greene also emphasized the maximization of power, not necessarily the length of it. In other words, utilizing what power they have to the fullest. As to time or length of power, it’s not limited to the confines of the government. Borri and Schuppach’s legacy weren’t confined to their gimmicks. Their legacy went on even after imprisonment and retirement; they became symbols, paragons of mysticism. The same could be said to our country. Even if Noynoy will step down, Philippines will… Read more »
K3
Guest

Miracles, they downplay the worth of effort, skill, talent, and perseverance.

Elitism, false analogies, misplaced faith, and the pride that causes refusal to be wrong; such things cause us to see things as a carriage horse does, a single straight path where the unknown will always be the wrong way unless shown to us by the driver.

Parallax
Guest

“miracles” = one common way pinoys call something they’re too lazy to think about and fully comprehend

i.e., it’s a shortcut to NOT have to think

K3
Guest

True that. Or something they do not want to believe is possible in this world.

Haha, I just remembered the old CoatSaver ad

Der Fuhrer
Guest
I do not believe in the dictator wannabe Mr. BS Aquino. God is definitely not on his side. There is no yellow cult. What exists is a frail, minority alliance of political rag-tag followers who believe more in mercenary politics. Money talks. Money influences and moves people. The coming elections will prove this. Many will abandon his party. The majority of the people are not fools. They are wise to his straight(and wide) path slogan, false political promises and lies. He tried to generate a “respectable” crowd in the recent EDSA Anniversary Celebration. It was a failure. The demagogue cult… Read more »
Arche
Guest

Noynoy by himself is indeed unlikely to be a capable dictator; but then, he isn’t alone. There are other people pulling the strings, so to speak.

Well, what I did is to establish parallels between the 27th law and how the clan progressed throughout the years, which can substantiate the cult-like nature of the Aquino legacy. You’re not a part of it, but many are. Although it can be said that the influence is waning, well, it can also be said that they reaped so much benefits from us, that it doesn’t really matter if the scapegoat Noynoy is struck down.

Hyden Toro
Guest
A parable of Jesus Christ, found in the New Testament Bible; tells about building your house with foundation on solid rock; and not on a foundation of unstable sand. Adolf Hitler of Nazi Germany did the same as the Aquino Regime…they used Cult tactic. Using the murder of Ninoy Aquino, Jr. by the NPA, as a result of his unholy alliance with them. The Aquinos used the Catholic Church as a ally…the Catholic Church did not mind this family is the biggest swindler in our country. By swindling the Hacienda Luisita. If Religion and Politics combine: it’s a Witch Brew…combine… Read more »
brianitus
Guest
Arche, Good insight on how people were “guided” into the religion of politics. I’ve always believed that PNoy was the feel-good decision for most of the people who voted for him. As the son of a saint, how the heck can you go wrong with voting for the guy? To add, don’t you think that Philippine presidents (and most politicians in general) are guided by one simple rule in their 6-year term? It’s almost just “Survive at all cost.” Survival is easy once you paint yourself as the following: 1. Genuinely Pro-poor (it’s a wonder why politicians aren’t nominated for… Read more »
Joe America
Guest
“Here, we have the very manifestations of the Dark Ages, only it’s not mainly about bloodshed, and more about intellectual bankruptcy.” The one thing I don’t get is how President Aquino is any different than any other Philippine President. They are all both power pawns and power-brokers. Indeed, power is a currency of daily Philippine life from the shop keeper who holds that we should be honored that he is willing to sell us his goods, to the snarling government minions behind any agency desk. Gloria Arroyo played power games well. I wan’t here during prior administrations, but assume Estrada… Read more »
benign0
Admin

But Noynoy is the quintessential itch that manifests that underlying disease that is Filipino culture.

Joe America
Guest

And scratching feels soooo good, eh? I somehow think hammering the education system of the Philippines into world class order would get more done. Kinda like a good dose of antibiotics.

benign0
Admin

Indeed. Itches itch because they beg to be scratched.

Arche
Guest

But I wasn’t talking solely about Noynoy’s presidency. I was also talking about the subtle religion his clan has established, stretching back to the time of the EDSA revolution. That sets him apart from the other presidents; his lineage’s legacy has been deeply ingrained into the Filipino psyche. ^^

I fear that it may be impractical to compare the Aquino-Cojuangco clan’s power games on par with the other administrations, given certain… complications (as I’ve mentioned earlier).

Joe America
Guest
I still fail to see how his family is any different from the Magsaysay or Gordon or Arroyo or Ampatuan families. They all have a local pseudo-religious following. The Gordons ARE Olongapo, passing the reins of power from father to son to wife. President Aquino just happens to be in the top job. This “clanness” is a hallmark of Philippine social structure, as near as I can tell. Where power and favors are the currency to keep a lock on things. Barangay level is no different. Cities. Governorships. Presidency. Same. Until you break the values, you see the same over… Read more »
Joe America
Guest

Added thought. You also see the Marcos family and Arroyo family in the background, positioning their offspring for the top job if they can figure out how to work it. Not to mention the “Son of Estrada”. Aquino is just there now. Four more years and out. What’s the big deal? You truly expect a raid on the Constitution by Aquino to remain in power?

Arche
Guest
My, my. Forgive me if it took a bit long to answer your questions. ^^ Did people love or adore the political dynasties you mentioned in your posts in the course of their terms? Yes, these dynasties incurred the wrath of the people in their conquest for power. Meanwhile, the Aquino-Cojuangco clan… how long did it take for people to start realizing their wrongs? Not to mention not everyone knows of it yet. This is my major point. What sets Noynoy and his lot apart from other dynasties is that they more or less won the hearts of the people… Read more »
Dude
Guest

@Arche

Be very careful with Mr Joe “dishonorable” America. He is very fond of twisting people’s words especially when he reads statements critical of his idol, PNoy.

Me thinks he is a paid hack of the yellow army. There is no other explanation for his irrational behavior.

He keeps saying that as an ex US military, it was his duty to be loyal to the elected leader. Bill Steffen also served in the US military but he doesn’t see any problem with GRP criticising the government.

There are too many holes in Joe’s statements.

Amir Al Bahr
Guest

Arche, welcome to Joe America’s bag of tricks. Twisting the critic’s words is the last bastion of the desperate. Try as he might, he can deflect all criticism towards his idol Noynoy as inapplicable to him but reality bites people in the ass like a dog.

Joe America
Guest
Arche, yes, I suppose that could be read as putting words in your mouth, or misrepresentation, although I did not intend it that way. Just a challenge, trying to figure out exactly what it is that you want. What action you are expecting of me or other readers. I’m sincerely trying to figure out why President Aquino is seen as such a pernicious, dangerous character when I see him as just another regular Filipino power-family kind of guy, where family has meaning akin to mafia family. He seems not out of the ordinary to me, either to skill or skullduggery.… Read more »
Arche
Guest
“Arche, yes, I suppose that could be read as putting words in your mouth, or misrepresentation, although I did not intend it that way.” Heh-heh, okay. “Just a challenge, trying to figure out exactly what it is that you want. What action you are expecting of me or other readers.” You will know what I want when you stop context-dropping. Whether you do this intentionally or not is beyond me. Never did I isolate Noynoy in the issue regarding the Yellow culture. I specifically invoked the “clan;” Aquino-Cojuangco clan. This alone dispels the following misrepresentation of yours. “I’m sincerely trying… Read more »
Arche
Guest

*Does this render a political critic’s trade useless?

Apologies for this teeny-tiny mistake.

Joe America
Guest
Arche, I appreciate the time you took to respond. I agree that I try to extend beyond what you have said to make my own points, not parrot back what you have said. I think your article was thought provoking and thorough. If the thinking provoked my thoughts in directions you didn’t intend, I don’t know what to do about it. That’s where the thoughts went. Dialogue is just that. Questions and answers in search of understanding. You seem to be believing what dude is saying, that I am a malevolent soul trolling away. I’m not. I have beliefs, of… Read more »
dude
Guest
President Aquino is roundly criticized and mocked… As if PNoy and his minions do not do this to GMA. Joe’s cognitive bias is deluding him again. He wants Filipinos to treat PNoy with kid’s gloves. That ain’t gonna happen old fart. He seems not out of the ordinary to me, either to skill or skullduggery. Oh my. Persecuting his enemies is not enough proof for Joe that PNoy is a scheming son of a b*tch. I still don’t get why he should be punished because his mother was adored. As if his mother’s saintly image is the only reason why… Read more »
Arche
Guest
“I agree that I try to extend beyond what you have said to make my own points, not parrot back what you have said.” Hehe, you do have a flair for sarcasm. ^^ However, you will agree with me in saying that you have not exactly established a sound logical chain between what you insinuate and what I have said in my article. You can’t infer from my article that Noynoy must be punished because of his mother’s legacy. You do not possess the necessary logical premises. You also can’t infer that I “expect” the Yellow masses to suddenly change… Read more »
Amir Al Bahr
Guest
Hay naku Joe. All you want to do is vilify everyone you perceive to be badmouthing your idol PNoy. You presume to insult Arche’s intelligence if you’re insinuating that he may have gotten carried away by dude’s pronouncements. You’re implying that he can’t think for himself. Your putting words in his mouth and twisting what he’s trying to say as something very offensive about your idol was ultimately your undoing. You may be more eloquent, well-read, and more proficient in spin than the average Noytard, but in the end ugaling Noytard ka pa rin. Please. Don’t tell us that you’re… Read more »
Joe America
Guest
“. . . I was your only opponent.” That is what I don’t grasp. That you consider me an opponent for seeking understanding or clarification. I mean if I can’t ask a question without you taking it as a challenge to your personal self esteem how do you or I ever LEARN anything, one from the other? And you try to define the rules for me as to what I am allowed to say. I’m trying your patience. I’m not supposed to bring others into the conversation. I can’t use the logic I use. Why don’t you just write my… Read more »
dude
Guest
Your putting words in his mouth and twisting what he’s trying to say as something very offensive about your idol was ultimately your undoing. You may be more eloquent, well-read, and more proficient in spin than the average Noytard, but in the end ugaling Noytard ka pa rin. Hahahaha! Well said, Amir. Joe America is really a Noytard. He doesn’t have any qualms about creating enemies here in his efforts to defend PNoy. He is becoming irrational the longer he pretends not to be biased for PNoy. He can’t even follow his own advice. Arche is entitled to his opinion.… Read more »
Parallax
Guest
@joe: You expect the yellow hordes to go away or suddenly get smarter? of course not. they have the likes of you serving them the yellow kool aid. And history will be the judge of his overall contribution to the Philippines. Not those who adore him or those who criticize him. for the love of everything that is tangible and isn’t VAGUE as described in the article, could you please explain that in TANGIBLE terms please? thank you. I still don’t get why he should be punished because his mother was adored. arche didn’t say pnoy should be punished because… Read more »
Parallax
Guest
@joe: I agree that I try to extend beyond what you have said to make my own points, not parrot back what you have said. I think your article was thought provoking and thorough. If the thinking provoked my thoughts in directions you didn’t intend, I don’t know what to do about it. That’s where the thoughts went. cut the bullsh*t, joe (as futile as my request to you may be). what, you’re not responsible for your own thoughts and responses? the brain has its own mechanism by which it keeps certain thoughts separate in the imagination while others are… Read more »
Parallax
Guest
@joe: I mean if I can’t ask a question without you taking it as a challenge to your personal self esteem how do you or I ever LEARN anything, one from the other? if i may mention the obvious, arche never took anything you said as a challenge to his personal self-esteem. he did tell you to not put words into his mouth. And you try to define the rules for me as to what I am allowed to say. I’m trying your patience. I’m not supposed to bring others into the conversation. I can’t use the logic I use…… Read more »
Dick S. O'Rosary
Guest

“You truly expect a raid on the Constitution by Aquino to remain in power?” seems like a prophecy getting fulfilled.

Arche
Guest
“You presume to insult Arche’s intelligence if you’re insinuating that he may have gotten carried away by dude’s pronouncements. You’re implying that he can’t think for himself.” This thought occurred to me as well. However, for the sake of courtesy, I bit my lip and came up with another request. I thank you for speaking on behalf of me though. I also thank Dude for taking the time of telling me about Mr. Joe America here. Now, Mr. Joe America, do not mistake this gesture as “accepting a bribe” or “brainwashing” or something. This is but politeness in action. I… Read more »
Joe America
Guest

I don’t consider you an opponent. I consider you a good writer whose message I did not, and still do not, comprehend. Why do you consider me an opponent?

Arche
Guest

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/opponent

“One that opposes another or others in a battle, contest, controversy, or debate.”

I just used the word in a technical way. I don’t intend to establish a me versus you scenario. Haven’t I told you that I do not take you negatively?

As far as this debate goes, you are my “opponent,” because we disagree in some points. Nothing personal! Seriously.

Arche
Guest

Enemy =/= Opponent

Joe America
Guest
I do not oppose you. I don’t understand, ergo I asked some questions and made some statements to share with you my “take” on the matter. I don’t understand how the Aquino family is any different from the Arroyos or the Estradas or the Marcoses or the Magsaysays or the Gordons or so many others who have inroads to power. Opinion: If the Philippines is in the dark ages (which in some ways it is), it has more to do with the culture of power than some evil associated with Aquino’s popularity. I tend to look for what to do… Read more »
Arche
Guest
Well, forgive me if you have somewhat been “hurt” by my word usage. But I never gave it much attention. My only point of interest is to settle the points we have little problems with. I do not intend to ANTAGONIZE you in any way, although, as it turns out, you still see me as antagonistic. Feel free to correct me, though. Regarding your opinion: I agree. Let Noynoy serve his term, because his election is “constitutional.” I never said “oust Noynoy!” Still, however, don’t we hold the right to criticize him for what he might be doing wrong? Don’t… Read more »
dude
Guest

I don’t understand how the Aquino family is any different from the Arroyos or the Estradas or the Marcoses or the Magsaysays or the Gordons or so many others who have inroads to power.

That is easy. The Aquinos pretend to be good and saintly whereas the others do not pretend to be anything they are not. This makes them better than the Aquinos.

Tsk tsk. Joe, you are no good at this.

Arche
Guest

As to the difference between the Aquino-Cojuangco clan and the rest, I have already addressed it. I thank dude for reiterating it. 🙂

benign0
Admin
@JoeAmerica: I don’t know what your obssession is with this notion that GRP is out campaigning to “oust” Noynoy. I speak for myself when I say that I have always been for Noynoy serving his entire term. And I believe none of the GRP writers as far as I have seen have advocated removing him from Malacanang unconstitutionally. In fact, Filipinos deserve to be subject to the Noynoy presidency for the full six year term. Filipinos deserve Noynoy, because they voted for him. We remain exceedingly consistent not just in our focus on Noynoy’s idiocracy but on the idiocracy of… Read more »
dude
Guest

@Arche

You are welcome!

Arche
Guest
“That is what I don’t grasp. That you consider me an opponent for seeking understanding or clarification. I mean if I can’t ask a question without you taking it as a challenge to your personal self esteem how do you or I ever LEARN anything, one from the other? And you try to define the rules for me as to what I am allowed to say. I’m trying your patience. I’m not supposed to bring others into the conversation. I can’t use the logic I use.” For the opponent part, refer to my other comment. And I am also starting… Read more »
Arche
Guest

Again, never do I impose on people whom I debate with. I have no right to. I always welcome what people have to say; haven’t I proven that? However, wouldn’t it hurt to tell me how you arrived to your conclusions, if it isn’t your intention to misrepresent what I have said?

Frankly, sir, whenever someone attempts to involve my personage into the debate, claiming that my ego is being aggravated, that serves as cue for me that this debate is heading nowhere.

Please prove me wrong. I mean you no disrespect. Thank you for your time. Again.

dude
Guest

Arche – 10 points

Joe – Zero. Nada.

😉

Amir Al Bahr
Guest
Arche, if you’re expecting Joe to show logic when his beloved PNoy is being discussed, forget it. You’re more likely to see hell freeze over. Joe, it is useless to hide the fact that you take offense at PNoy being put in a discouraging light by instead trying to insinuate that Arche is being offended by you. Don’t change the subject, and don’t cry that you don’t understand what Arche is saying because you refuse to. Arche is one of the most coldly logical writers in GRP. Friendly advice: don’t p*ss him off; you’ve already gotten yourself in deep sh*t.
Parallax
Guest

@joe:

The one thing I don’t get is how President Aquino is any different than any other Philippine President.

and yet you put him on a pedestal. caught you on a lie right there, joe.

On what basis would you expect President Aquino to be any different?

your question is based on the same lie you told above. tsk, tsk, tsk.

Joe America
Guest
Christ almighty, I go get a good night’s sleep and everyone from the parallellass to the Heavy Hypocrite decide to thump away. Still, no one has answered the question, how does the Aquino family differ from any other power-based family in the Philippines. That is the gist of the article. The popularity of his clan is somehow pernicious and a threat. It seems to me the Philippine power-based, favor-trading society is the root problem, not President Aquino, specifically. He’s just a normal (benignly quirky) Filipino. benigno, poor choice of words on my part. When I said “let him serve out… Read more »
Joe America
Guest

benigno, and if I seek the “comfort” of my own blog site, why the hell to I visit here and try to hold above-board conversations in this cess-pool of agenda and personal attack? If anything, I am a masochist. More accurately, I am simply going about the business of learning, crafting some skill in working with words, and growing, personally.

dude
Guest
if I seek the “comfort” of my own blog site, why the hell to I visit here and try to hold above-board conversations in this cess-pool of agenda and personal attack? Who is attacking whom? You come here because you do not get inspiration from your readers. They have no deep and meaningful insight that can compel you to write your next article. Face it, Joe. You are just good at twisting other people’s words. You do not really add any value around here. You get a lot of ideas from GRP for your blog and you recycle the articles.… Read more »
Arche
Guest
And yet you keep yapping about my calling you an opponent when I mean nothing more than that. You also complain that I am being dictatorial in this debate, that I, somehow, restrict your freedom of speech. And you still insist that nobody answered your question when I personally did already. Yesterday. I explained why I dislike some of your responses. I explained the things you claimed not to understand. And yet you refuse to acknowledge them. What an interesting fellow. A fellow who claims to not antagonize me, yet claims that I am butt-hurt and an onion. ^^ Well,… Read more »
Joe America
Guest

Arche, nah, you figure it out for yourself if you have good information or bad, if you draw good conclusions or bad. You can listen to your band of merry men or read and think, makes no difference to me.

Arche
Guest
Oh, okay, so I guess I am at fault, after all. I guess all those explaining and patience went to waste. ^^ Oh, and believe me, I have thoroughly read your comments. I read them repeatedly just to be sure. And I have thoroughly addressed all of them. I would love to say the same to you, but then I would wonder why you still haven’t acknowledged my responses to your question regarding what sets the Aquino-Cojuangco clan apart. ^^ I loved this part the most: “You can listen to your band of merry men or read and think, makes… Read more »
Joe America
Guest

Well, you fundamentally make too much sense to earn an article in my blog. You have to be devious and deceitful and hypocritical to warrant time and attention there. You don’t measure up to those standards. You have earned commendations there for being among GRP’s good new writers.

Catch you next article.

benign0
Admin
Hey I’ve got an idea, Mr Joe America. How about we run an online experiment that goes like this: (1) I put all comments of yours subsequent to this in the Spam queue. (2) You go off and get up on your soapbox elsewhere (say, somebody else’s blog, like yours maybe) and announce to the world how the Admins of GR Post don’t practice “free speech” here. (3) We both sit back for the next couple of weeks (or years) and see if: (3.a) anyone out there actually cares about what you have to say about our Admin practices here;… Read more »
dude
Guest

You have to be devious and deceitful and hypocritical to warrant time and attention there.

There goes Joe again acting like he has the moral authority to claim someone is being “deceitful” and “hypocritical”.

Hey Joe, look at yourself in the mirror before pointing your fingers at other people, ok? That should teach you to be more humble.

Joe America
Guest
Mr. Editor, Sir, Perhaps I missed my mark again. I was trying to compliment Arche after our batting of heads because I think he is a superb writer. Satire does not do well in a compliment, I guess, because even great minds miss it. I conclude I missed the mark (my fault) when I intended well by it, and it gets me your rather desperate and insulting threat. You need no other response from me, as you have the authority to do what you wish. I only suggest you read all of my commentary and weigh its constructive intent, and… Read more »
benign0
Admin

Read the last item in the small print. See you around.

Amir Al Bahr
Guest

Looks like Parallax, dude, Trosp, and I will have to go cold turkey till the next ultra-fanatic comes along…

dude
Guest

@Amir

Joe was just too abusive already. He should not have gotten away with that kind of behaviour for so long. He’s just milking GRP for ideas for his blogs anyway. I’m not going to miss the troll.

Parallax
Guest

@joe:

I was trying to compliment Arche after our batting of heads because I think he is a superb writer. Satire does not do well in a compliment, I guess, because even great minds miss it. I conclude I missed the mark (my fault) when I intended well by it, and it gets me your rather desperate and insulting threat.

up yours, joe america. how’s that for satire?

trosp, dude, and bill steffen were right about you.

Arche
Guest
I see. Mr. Joe America intended to compliment me. And it seems that, for some unfathomable reason, I failed to understand his subtle praises. Since I’ve misunderstood Mr. Joe America’s satire, wouldn’t it be beneficial not just for me, but to everyone in this website, to know how his compliments really work? Perhaps this is where I shall witness Mr. Joe America’s logic, which I supposedly took away from him in the course of our conversation. I do not hold any grudges, nor am I being sarcastic. In fact, I am being honest and curious (to a certain extent), since… Read more »
Parallax
Guest

don’t you worry, arche. as you can see, i’ve just “complimented” him, too!

i

dude
Guest
Still, no one has answered the question, how does the Aquino family differ from any other power-based family in the Philippines. It has been answered so many times, Joe. You just refuse to acknowledge it. If PNoy was just a “benignly quirky” guy, Filipinos would not be at each other’s throats. PNoy is the source of hate. He encourages people to throw the rule book away and defy the Supreme Court. He promotes anarchy on the streets just so people could get distracted from the real issue, which is his incompetence. When I said “let him serve out his term”… Read more »
FallenAngel
Member

Arche, I can’t help but think that the Aquinos have built a cult of personality here in the Philippines. But at the same, there’s something missing to make it complete. I can’t verbalize what it is 😛

Arche
Guest

Sense, perhaps?

I’m so sorry if it took so long for me to reply. I failed to notice your posts. XD

brianitus
Guest

Arche,

Just to lighten things a bit here.

I think the ribbon you mentioned in your article is a reference to Ninoy. They did use “Tie a Yellow Ribbon” before as a song for Ninoy’s homecoming back in the 80s.

Back to regular programming.

Arche
Guest

Hm, now that you mention it, I think I do remember something like that. Thanks for the heads-up!

Oh, and don’t worry. I’m always calm. I do my best. ^^

brianitus
Guest

Np. Arche.

Who knows. In the future, that ribbon can mean hepatitis awareness with all the yellow overload.

Clueless
Guest

“Who knows. In the future, that ribbon can mean hepatitis awareness with all the yellow overload.”

You guys are cracking me up!! 🙂

ricelander
Guest

(3.b) anyone of the regular commentors here in GR Post actually miss your presence and clamor for a reinstatement of your comments.

Put him back on, *****!

What do you want, a blog where all of you are giving each other the thumbs up?

Remember FV? FV was most lively and dynamic when it was free-for-all!

Besides, benignO, you were worse in your bad old days!

dude
Guest

Maybe you should be spammed too for violating the commenting guideline. You don’t own this blogsite.

Joe America is just a troll. There are others who have more useful insights to share. Joe is useless here. He badmouths the GRP writers all the time. That’s not really constructive.

dude
Guest

Besides, Ricelander is not even a regular commenter here. What’s his problem with spamming cry-baby Joe? 😉

Amir al Bahr
Guest
I don’t think calling the webmaster names is going to help your case. Look, read above, Joe subtly started the ad hominem first. If he can’t shape up and maintain his rationality regardless of the topic then he shouldn’t come back here. You expect lively to mean that a forum is good? Ad hominems are lively; they do not a meaningful discussion make. Do you think lively ad hominem automatically means substantial? That “tu quoque” argument about whatever benign0 was in the old days is irrelevant. It doesn’t diminish from his argument. You obviously haven’t learned to look past that.
benign0
Admin
@ricelander: Well, those were the FV days of course. But in case you haven’t noticed yet, these are the GRP days. And these days are under new management. So if you don’t like how things are being run here, well, there’s not much about that sentiment I can help you with. Freedom of speech should not be confused with free inquiry. Any schmoe can do free speech. But what separates the men from the boys is the ability to practice free inquiry by applying critical thinking. “Perhaps you feel you are being treated unfairly?” – Darth Vader to Lando Calrissian… Read more »
ricelander
Guest

It’s your prerogative, of course. But you can think it over. One day, you will appreciate this, I tell you.

benign0
Admin

Glad you see it that way. But I will think it over. 🙂

Homer
Member

Trolls will bite the hands of the webmasters that feed ’em. Some have already gone beyond abusive.

I say spam ’em before it’s too late.

Who the ***k cares if they whine about it? At least we are spared from their unwanted presence in here.

Yun lang…

dude
Guest

Hear, hear! Joe just wants an audience because he is too full of himself. He needs to grow up. This experience should make him grow up.

Drecko
Guest

GRP, AP, CoRRECT – all the same, couldn’t handle a differing view. Iyakin ka rin pala Benigno, bilib na sana ako sa iyo, kaso, jejemon rin pala ang puso mo. shame! shame!

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