#NeverAgain? Was former Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos really that awful a leader?

The whole brouhaha surrounding the stink raised by Ateneo students and alumni over a photo of their fellows schmoozing with fomer First Lady Imelda Marcos in an Ateneo Scholarship Foundation (ASF) social event brought to light renewed debate over whether or not former President Ferdinand Marcos really was that bad. Was the former strongman a bad President?

The popular sentiment taken for granted as “truth” today is that he was really bad. He allegedly killed lots of innocent Filipinos, including celebrated Atenista martyr Edgar Jopson — a name that is suddenly making waves in social and traditional media following this latest of ‘activist’ circuses.

marcos_family

But Marcos’s family is thriving today. And if the following three renowned popularly-held assumptions about the Marcos family are true;

(1) that its patriarch, the former President was really that bad a president;

(2) that his wife Imelda was complicit in that badness forming with him during his rule what is now popularly called a “conjugal dictatorship”; and,

(3) that the rest of his family have supposedly escaped justice that remains due them…

…then the fact of the Marcos’s continued figuring in the Philippines’ high society and top-level politics says a lot about Filipinos’ collective seriousness and resolve (or lack of either one or both) to confirm and act on those assumptions. On regarding the fact that no Marcos post 1986 has stood accused in a court of law, perhaps one can argue that it was not for want of trying. As a New York Times report cites, “The great majority of the 900 civil and criminal cases against the Marcoses, filed in the Philippines and the United States, have been dismissed.” But the obvious next questions persist. Why have there been no convictions? Why have there been no arrests? No detentions (bailable or non-bailable)?

Certainly if there were, indeed, thousands of victims, at least one complaint progressed to the point of seeing at least one of the Marcoses detained (and feasted upon by social media “activists”) will have been a statistically strong possibility. More importantly, one would think that the current Philippine President Benigno Simeon ‘BS’ Aquino III, son of one of if not the most famous of Marcos’s alleged victims would have focused his now famously-narrow presidential attention span and legendary vindictiveness on avenging his father over the course of his six-year term.

But who are languishing in prison today? Famous names maybe. But certainly names not as unforgettable as names ending with “Marcos”.

So, there you go. The track record of people who supposedly had said (and continue to say) the most about the eeevvvviiilllls of the Marcos regime certainly exhibit a dismal track record of convincingly walking their talk, not to mention the Ateneo community who, today, are huffing and puffing about the Imelda photos while bemused non-Ateneans watch.

Perhaps the bigger reality escapes the collective thinking here — that the continued rein of the Marcos clan over Philippine society and politics is a failure of all Filipinos; that is, if (and that “if” is getting bigger as more people supposedly forget what it is exactly we “replaced” in 1986) the Marcoses are, indeed, the bad people they are popularly made out to be.

Innocent until proven guilty, remember? That is the law. If Filipinos, particularly those who speak the loudest about the Marcoses being “evil” are to be vindicated, then perhaps pencils need to be sharpened and complaints drawn up. Then again, it’s all too hard, right? The next teleserye is coming on and the next soundbyte to be issued by our celebrity whistleblowers is due to be issued soon. See ya later.

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Post Author: benign0

benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.

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67 Comments on "#NeverAgain? Was former Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos really that awful a leader?"

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Johnny Derp
Guest

Growing up, I’ve been told that the marcoses were eeeeviilllll because of their supposed crimes but now I realize that after Marcos left, the philippines began to degrade since the Aquinos used Abias-Cbn and the like to brainwash the masses into lowering their standards for politicians.
Even local tv shows have been dumbed down thanks to Cory’s policies back in the 90’s

luzviminda
Guest

what can i add more??? 100% totally agree!!!

hts23
Guest

can I get a link of the policies? I can google but doubt it will be easy so I’m giving asking a shot.

Pallacertus
Guest
Maybe it’s nothing more than a historical accident — that the full effect of misguided financial policy-making from the martial law years didn’t take effect till Cory took the reins of power? It’s not like (to use an obvious indicator of the economic straits we’ve been subjected to these last thirty years) Pinoys didn’t have reasons to leave this country to seek better-paying jobs elsewhere before the late ’80s. I certainly don’t have and thus can’t quote figures from the timeline in question, so I genuinely don’t know. I realize this stance doesn’t help bolster GRP’s reputation as an anti-Noynoy… Read more »
Derpy Derp Derp
Guest

Can’t say you’re wrong, as a Filipino I was educated to hate Marcos, when I asked my mom, mom simply said to believe on facts and not what others say, upon doing extended research, I have concluded that my school and all of my teachers were wrong…. Now they hate me.

chinthaka Naotunna
Guest

Hi Derpy,
I am chinthaka from Sri lanka , I am interesting to learn about your president Marcos. I also believe he was a good guy & America did this blunder.

Can you help me to find out some inofrmation regarding explaining what was really happened? why people hated him that time , what was the misinterpretation? Was he a corrupted guy?

thanks
chinthaka

amaterasu
Guest
that’s quite a lot of read, and in the end you will have to make your opinion. i believe the BAD GUY image was promoted to cover the fact that the people’s power revolution of 1986 is one of the single greatest blunder this country has ever done. people are ashamed of it, so instead of facing that reality, they would rather chose to make a scapegoat out of the greatest president this country ever had. as well, growing up, i have always heard about the two sides of it.the regime was bad, but not because the leader was evil.… Read more »
ren luna
Guest

In the Philippines, being right is was and will always be being on the wrong side of the track ! Negative tolerance has always been the politicians ” Ace in the Hole”. Specifically when it comes to elections. Mr.DDD, now your part of my circle of being hated coz of doing the right thing and educating yourself to find the truth.

joeld
Guest

Bongbong Marcos pushing for the reopening of Ninoy Aquino assassination case already says a lot about the Aquinos. That is a slap on Noynoy’s face. Less than 3 decades in power and nothing to show for it. It is obvious that the filipino people were duped, big time.

Johnny Derp
Guest

That begs the question: “Why didn’t Cory and Noynoy resolve the mystery of who had Ninoy killed?”

One theory is that they know who it is and it is possible that the mastermind is one of their relatives(a cojuangco perhaps?) that’s why they are so reluctant in resolving it or they are just too incompetent in resolving it.

THOM HARDY
Guest

Everyone knows who did it. The fact that Noynoy Aquino has let it go on this long, if in fact nothing has been done about the matter of his Dad, says something about the guy.

Alot of guys would have been paroled from state prisons already after finding who murdered their Father in such brutal fashion.

If it is an attempt to get some sort of Religious message across. (A lot of people aren’t Religious or use it as an excuse to do something.).Fuggedabowd it!!!

luzviminda
Guest

lalabas at lalabas ang katotohanan na alam na alam ng mga aquino-cojuangco……all in the family. hehehehehehe

ruben
Guest

Marcos Senior himself was practically begging to be allowed to come back from Hawaii so he can face the charges being hurled against him. If the Aquinos were so certain of these charges, including the murder of Benigno Sr., why did they not allow him to come back, put him in jail, or even hospital arrest, and file a multitude of charges against him? That is if they were certain of the charges. Yes were duped and super big time.

THOM HARDY
Guest
It is no better or worse in the RP now, it is still a miserable third world shit-hole, much like it was in Marcos’ time. Complete with criminal people running the country. You could say it is the exact same way now, as it was then.One difference: minus the political assasination.Martial law becocame routine in the Philippines and the same things are going on now as back then.Technologies and the same families.Only now with the progeny running the show. If a high-profile leader was to be gunned down in the Philippines, the people most likely would not get as upset… Read more »
Yawn
Guest

Guinness Book of World Records once listed marcos as the world’s biggest thief in history.
I suppose in Fucked up Philippines that would be considered a remarkable honorable achievement.

Jim DiGriz
Guest

Thom, you are very wrong. The Philippines was a better place by far when Marcos was President. Your statement is FALSE.

Daves
Guest

He he, I know some (if not many) people — especially those who also lived through Martial Law — who will happily disagree with you.

amaterasu
Guest

and i know quite a lot of people who would tell you it wasn’t all that bad, considering the current state of things. if you ask them, many of the disgruntled people are mostly communists, criminals, and oligarchs who wanted their day in the sun. sure, people disappeared. but they do so today, and in even greater numbers.

DER SPIEGEL
Guest

ITS A MATTER OF OPINION. kinda like editing people’s comments in a blog. Someone decides if they like something,OR NOT! pretty simple.

The MAIN thing is: THERE IS NO RIGHT OR WRONG ANSWWER, JUST POINTS OF VIEW.

Jim DiGriz
Guest

Correct! My point of view is that his statement is false.

DER SPIEGEL
Guest
OK THEN, is Jim DiGriz gonna now state, after being told ‘Opinions are like @$$#OLES, everyone has one’, that his opinion is RIGHT? and even further is it because Jim Digriz has such low self esteem he can never be wrong? Even though it is not even a question of right or wrong OR True or False (because it is not a question that concerns those two concepts) and it is only an offerring of opinions here (that seem to be split evenly).Sure if you were a Marcos crony your life was great, if you were a political prisoner chances… Read more »
hts23
Guest

I’ve been told it was better then but I nevere lived in the 80s(70s?). Can anybody differentiate how living in Ph were better then to now?

rluna
Guest
I understand Mr. Hardy your frustration with my country. If you truly are a visiting foreigner, it does prove how critical you people are of other countries culture. One can never compare but one can look at its own country’s history then we all can call it EVEN, would that work sir ? Now for the sake of argument, your from the USofA and I’m from the Philippines and our present Gov’t or even the past has created such tragic mistakes concerning foreign policies. We never started a war with other countries hence not drastically affecting our economy. Dubya and… Read more »
Aeta
Guest

rluna,

It’s not just the foreigners who are critical of the Philippines–for good reason–but also the Filipino fo their own country.

The message is loud and clear: the Philippines is FOCKED UP.

The country, the culture, the people, and their values are corrupt.

Aeta

rluna
Guest
@Aeta > Yes, the country is “FOCKED UP”, I never contested that. I’m just saying that one would know exactly what one lives with. I grew up during the “Martial Law Days” up to and during the early days following “People’s Power Rev” and I do understand from research and speaking to actual live people involve with the former gov’t. and the present gov’t that it was a mess back then and even worst today. I’m trying to educate my countrymen one ear at a time. Have you done anything positive or enlightening to yours ? Bitchin all the time… Read more »
BigKahuna
Guest
I cant understand why people are still obsessed with the Marcos’s. That era of gevernment is over. What’s done is done, time to move on. Its been 30 years. There are more pressing problems that needs to be addressed by the current administration, its constituents and populace. As far as his heirs are concerned, who voted them into office? Imelda with the Ateneans? So what? Where they doing something immoral or against the law? Its a selfie, get over it. I bet 90% of people would pose with a celebrity, morally upright or otherwise, when given the chance? Anyway, just… Read more »
Daves
Guest

Plenty of reasons, really. For one, Marcos (allegedly) plundered the public’s money. For another, he (allegedly) had his people torture many folks or worse simply for disagreeing with him.

Essentially, Marcos (allegedly) did a bunch of stuff that unnecessarily harmed a lot of people.

I say allegedly because I’m aware that some folks want proof, more so in a court of law, of Marcos’ culpability. Alas, he died since then, although efforts to recover money he stole are since underway.

Just sharing what I’ve learned.

Aldus
Guest

You should also have said, “money he allegedly stole”

marius
Guest

if he allegedly stole it, perhaps the Swiss will allegedly return it?

Mark valera
Guest
It’s all propaganda eh! How about the Aquino and the crime they have committed in their province!!! Hypocrisy… Combine all the president after Marcos won’t match what he did for the country and Cory spent more than Marcos compare to the 20 year’s and 6 years of Cory. If you say Dictatorship what the heck!! democracy is for? sa mga mayayaman lang..dapat mamayan who privatize electricity water etc… look at DXB walang langis and they are in the middle of the desert but they are very succesful and they are not a democratic country but they enjoy freedom and prosperity… Read more »
DER SPIEGEL
Guest

@ MARK, Did you say ‘spent’ as that is not the same thing as ‘stole’.

WTFU….they are all thieves. BUT,Corazon Aquino? The Filipino nation asked her to lead the country. if she stole anything, it is kinda like giving a thief the keys to your house and telling her when you’ll be out of town.

Aldus
Guest

DER,

Prove that Marcos stole people’s money. If you can do that, I will agree with you. It is not the whole Philippines who asked her to lead, but the oligarchs and those people who don’t want peace and prosperity.

aaaaa
Guest

I’m personally interested in what you think about this particular article, as old as it is.

http://globalnation.inquirer.net/49932/to-young-filipinos-who-never-knew-martial-law-and-dictatorship

Curious because this article uses the “you weren’t there when they blew up my family” argument.

Jim DiGriz
Guest

That article tastes as stale as licking a rock. Silly and imature.

DER SPIEGEL
Guest

************QUESTION**********
Uh, how do you know this?
How many rocks have you licked, JIM?

joeld
Guest
That article is really bent on clinging to the tired propaganda that the Aquinos are the Philippines’ saviors. He enumerated things on which why he thought that Marcos was the worst but failed to substantiate his claim, he was only a kid during that time. If at all he is clueless now on what is happening within the country, as he merely shrugs off all the realities which are far worse during the martial law years. Geographic location maybe, he is in San Francisco. He kept on banging about how critics today fare in comparison how they were during the… Read more »
Arthur Crandon
Guest

The writer is a bright man who has written much common sense, and I understand the premise of this article. However, it misses the central point. Money. The reason the Marcoses have escaped justice and, indeed, thrived is their immense wealth. There is no “innocent until proven guilty” in the Philippines. A more appropriate maxim would be “Guilty until proven Rich”!

T
Guest

“Innocent until bankrupt”

JP
Guest

Two Aquino presidents, one became very influential in her term, but they were not able to do anything.

Hyden Toro
Guest
All of them are bad. They had stolen. They killed and murdered people. They decieved us. I compare the Aquinos and the Marcoses, for you to judge…all these comparison are from reliable sources. Marcos fought in the Battle of Bataan and was a decorated soldier. Benigno Aquino, Sr. collaborated with the Japanese Imperial Army; and served in the Japanese militarist sponsored goverment. After the liberation, he fled to Tokyo, Japan for fear of his life. The Americans brought him back. He was tried and found guilty of treason; but was pardoned. Marcos became a Dictator, by changing the Constitution. with… Read more »
Hyden Toro
Guest

Ninoy Aquino, Jr. ordered the bombing of the Liberal Party ‘miting de avance” with the help of NPA ; killing innocent people, and injuring his partymates…

luzviminda
Guest

kaya nakarma sya sa ginawa nya sa mga KASAMAHAN dahil sa self interest nya. napatay sya…. sino pumatay, alam ng mga cojuangco yan!!! kaya KARMA KARMA LANG…

DER SPIEGEL
Guest

In short. the philippines is run by Political dynaties.These dynasties that are run by ruthless thieving scumbags will do anything, to anyone, to keep what is theirs and get more!

Its easy to figure as its filippine politics, not rocket science.

lauro E. Gecosala jr.
Guest
lauro E. Gecosala jr.

Correct ka dyan choy. i agree with you. . .

luzviminda
Guest
“20 years from now, bagsak na ang Pilipinas” – Pres. Marcos 1987 THE PHILIPPINES after 20 YEARS (The Revelation and Prediction has just began) The primary purpose of this video is to RAISE AWARENESS amongst the poor and underpriviledged citizens of the Philippines. Due to their lack of education, they have limited grasp of sophisticated terminologies which prompted the author to use BASIC FILIPINO TAGALOG STREET WORDS such as “Bobo” and “Ignorante” which means “Dull minded” and “Uninformed” respectively, to appeal to the masses. The objective of the director/author/owner of the video is to promote an intelligent and civilized discussion… Read more »
Pallacertus
Guest

Relevant links would be helpful.

DER SPIEGEL
Guest

The Statutte of limitations never runs out on a Murder charge.

So, the shooting of NiNoy Aquino at NAIA AIPORT in 1983 is still open and could be worked until an arrest was made and then a trial could take place to finnally find out who shot the Man on the face of the P500 bank note.

If I were NOY-NOY AQUINO it would be my life’s work to bring the scumbag that brutally murdered my Father to justice….and then some!

JP
Guest

Filipinos don’t deserve democracy.

Hyden Toro
Guest

We are not a Democracy…we are Feudal Oligarchy…

domo
Guest

Democracy? More like democrazy.

Pallacertus
Guest

Bullshit. The relative (and to some extent enforced) ignorance of the masses does not and should not be a reason to disbelieve in democracy and its effects.

Aeta
Guest

JP,

“Filipinos don’t deserve democracy.”

Exactly. Every Filipino wants to be the ‘Chief,’ not the ‘Indians,’ in a democracy.

Aeta

Jorge Bassig
Guest
Describing the Marcos’ regime as the “Never Again” or the “Dark Ages” is exaggerate seems to be somewhat unfair, selective and exaggerated. By saying “Never Again” it also includes all the hundreds of schools, hospitals, roads and bridges built during that time. Not to mention that rice was only P9.00 by Masagana ’99 and that PH was building a nuclear power plant, trains and missiles. Of course, we wouldn’t want to ignore the victims of 9 years of Martial Law (not 20 years! ’72-81) where, a lot of individuals were allegedly abducted, tortured and abused. However, lot of Filipinos doesn’t… Read more »
Pallacertus
Guest

At the risk of oversimplifying the dynamics of Philippine society under martial law, Marcos and his cronies did some good things and some bad things — under the aegis of a dictatorship. Even if Marcos were a more benevolent leader than the Aquinos would allow, let’s remind ourselves that the road to hell is paved with good intentions as well as bad.

CGCebuano
Guest

For once instead of complaining about how badly our country is run, why don’t you people run for office and help our poor country?

Krauss
Guest

You think running for office is the only way to help our country? You’re an idiot, as with all of Pnoy’s supporters.

Carles Xabier
Guest

ABS-CBN is the mouthpiece of the CPP-NPA-NDF-Yellow Oligarchs-Jesuits.

roland rosal
Guest

Only time will tell. But 29 yrs has passed we can now see who among our past Presidents did the most good and bad for this country. You be the judge.

1235
Guest
i wonder why this kids made this article,.,.they are clearly pointing about the marcoses,..I don’t know how this university teach their students,..it is clear that someone should be blame about this,..to all universities or schools around the Philippines,.pls,.use this as a subject only not politics,.because it is clear that you are against to someone and maybe endorsing another as elections is nearly coming.,.if you people are victims of martial law,then let it be,.don’t use young student to announce your feelings,.we are at the future not on the past,.,.instead of teaching your students on how we move forward to make our… Read more »
marius
Guest

Something I’ve noticed:

Don’t Filipino schools teach kids how to use punctuation and paragraphs?

Vincent
Member

Marius, yeah. Unfortunately, some either forgotten it, weren’t really paying attention during classes or is heavily influenced by a new writing style that was once a fad (i.e., jejemon). And when the trend is gone, they lost it completely.

As for me, I belong to the first.

1235
Guest

Philippine will never be a great nation if we the people are the cause of everything.,.,.be patient and let all our hands put together and raise this country as one as we raise all our hands to praise all our success.,.,.(this simple message is for the universities and schools in the Philippines,also a special to all politicians and to all the people of the Philippines.,)

Naknak
Guest
You said it very well, benign0. Perhaps the Martial Law “victims” or those who are riding in the ill-times of the Marcos era due in part to the never ending Aquino propaganda won’t stop until there’s closure which means a convicted Marcos. But seeing the way “victims” and their advocates seek for justice is simply by pricking olds wounds and nobody can counter the dismissed cases by proofs and lawful ways goes to show that Pinoys don’t really seek to win but only wants sympathies and glorification of their helplessness. How pathetic is that. And if BBM ever become like… Read more »
Lim
Guest
who is the real hero that caused this 1986 uproar? was it ninoy or marcos? i’d been told that ninoy caused the change. but times proven right that if he never came back the Philippines wud still be a good place to live citing our national security problem with china. therefore ninoy is the root of all problems! on the other hand if marcos cud have acted with cruelty as Saddam during the commotion, a lot of innocence wud be perish or gone by now. it’s a matter of time until the haze of confusion evaporate into thin air, we… Read more »
Lim
Guest

Let’s admit it that this nation is being ruled by the two influential families, Marcos and Aquino.
if u r a pro Marcos then u r an enemy of the Aquino. that’s the political trending nowadays.
so if we gather them all in one lists,
this is how we enumerate things:

1. Marcos vs Aquino
2. Martial law vs Edsa Revoltuion
3. New society vs Tuwid na daan
4. KBL-Nacionalista vs Liberal party

people are tired of this tug of war games in the politics!

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