The Filipino Rage to Punish: A Convenient Escape

Vindictive behavior is bad

While watching Immigration officials stopping former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo from leaving the country on TV, I marveled at the people who would scream at the top of their lungs at the TV screens, saying something like, “catch that thief! jail her! Hahaha!” I thought, that was such immature or trivial behavior. As if they were watching a movie.

It’s an interesting observation of Filipino behavior, shouting at the things they watch (like the watchers with guns who shot up the projector screen when they say FPJ’s character die). But it bears the question: Why are some Filipinos so worked up and excited to punish GMA even if there are so many other corrupt who are also part of the effort to jail her?

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Perhaps it is an indication of their own weakness, that they cannot do anything but sit on the sidelines saying “jail her, jail her!” as they lazily sit in front of their TV sets munching on chicharon while having their anti-high-blood medications at the ready (or not). They may have had the chance to write their congressman to ask for a repeal of the economic provisions of the constitution, or engage in some other useful action. But they instead prefer to find entertainment in real life, seeing the GMA issue as something to scream about, and treating it like a game between Ginebra and another basketball team (where one takes sides, cheering their team and cursing the other).

European Institute for Asian Studies (EIAS) vice chairman Dick Gupwell weighed in on the issue, saying the Aquino administration is not pursuing justice, but vindictiveness. It’s a common practice in Filipino politics; once a new person wins the elections, they will turn against their predecessor, if not by trying to harm or jail them, by undoing all their good projects. Vindictiveness is one of the things that politicians disguise as justice, even if it isn’t. It’s one of the things that obstruct true progress in our country.

Gupwell further said, “if people committed crimes they must be brought to justice but not in a humiliating way….” and come to think of it, Filipinos seem to love humiliating others. It’s a character flaw that’s so commonplace, you see it in often on online forums. Filipinos seem to enjoy seeing others suffering, which is also called schadenfreude. But they may make no effort to improve their own lives. They may enjoy seeing others suffering as “revenge” for their own condition – even if the one they are jeering is not responsible for their condition. They probably treat what they see like the lousy telenovelas they watch. This is perhaps what makes the court of public opinion popular even though it can be very misguided and indecent.

Perhaps this is because of the yabang and arrogance Filipinos seem to naturally emit, as well as this twisted sense of entitlement that they have the right to humiliate others. But to this end, they show that they are themselves corrupt and shallow. F. Sionil Jose wrote that Filipinos are so shallow. In this rage against GMA, they seem so shallow too.

I still see the rage to jail GMA as another distraction from the real issues. A recent article from GMA News (no, not Arroyo, the TV network) quotes a study conducted in other countries of Filipino workers. It says the OFW phenomenon is doing more harm than good, and that harm includes the breaking up of families and even the possible breakdown of our economy. In addition, Saudi Arabian authorities announced that they might put a cap on remittances of foreign workers to their home countries (and ultimately, their families). This is also possible in other countries. The Philippines’ OFW-driven economy is in danger of collapsing. But Filipinos don’t seem to care about this. They prefer to jail a former president, thinking that it’s such a great achievement.

Filipinos can rage to have someone punished or killed as a convenient escape from their own problems. Of course, it certainly is hard to think about one’s problems; but you must think about them in the end. People looking for an escape in schadenfreude only show their lack of civility. They may even be worse than the people they rage against.

82 Replies to “The Filipino Rage to Punish: A Convenient Escape”

  1. We love Political Zarzuelas; while our economy is going down and down…the prices of basic commodities are going up and up. It’s one way for the incompetent, Noynoy Aquino; to divert our attentions for his faliures to solve our economic problems. and at the same time; cover up, his Psychiatric problems and Mental Illness. He may be suffering from : Panic Attacks right now; disturbed sleeps; and excessive Anxieties…these problems facing him, can denitely, trigger and make worse his Mental Illness and Psychiatric problem…Soon he will be hiding again in some place, as a Crissis is there…or he may be obsessed in soliciting Honorary Doctorate Degrees from foreign universities, to satisfy his Paranoia, of thinking himself as Great…

  2. I read about F.Sionil Jose’s article and it’s one of my favourite articles to read on. Still, filipinos act dense and stubborn that even when written by someone who has the intelligence and the objectivity, leave comments of insults and accusing him of slurring pride of filipinos. They just can’t get IT. And then they wonder why many turn cynical about us.

  3. Why say Filipinos are mayabang and arrogant? Stating the word Filipinos you are talking about the entire population in the Philippines. That’s not right. Filipinos are known to fight for what they believe is right. They fought for freedom before and guess who won? They want justice from GMA due to the fact that many citizens are suffering from poverty and job loss because the Ex-President instead of helping the citizens instead made a name and a life of herself lavishing using the government money. This money comes from those people who pays taxes. When you buy anything you get charged with tax. And this will just go to the hands of the corrupt government. Yes there are indeed more corrupt people in the government and along with Gloria they are being looked in to (If you are following the news you’ll know that). Nobody has the right to humiliate anyone and nobody is humiliating anyone. GMA humiliated herself for what she did. We might have had a good President as well if she didn’t cheat in the election. Things would be different.

    1. The point here is due process – innocent until proven guilty.

      And besides, are GMA and her cronies the only ones to blame? As benign0 said in a previous article ( it’s clear that the problems of our country transcend personalities. A GMA conviction will not fix anything, and yet people are acting as if it will.

      “Filipinos are known to fight for what they believe is right.”

      I cannot disagree more. The Filipinos I know are known for their mañana habit and their “bahala na,” “pwede na” and “bakit ako” attitudes. Filipinos are conservative to a fault and will see any change as an inconvenience. Granted not every Filipino is like that; but heck, if majority of us weren’t do you think we would be in this #$%^hole now?

    2. @PaigeH

      “…many citizens are suffering from poverty and job loss because the Ex-President instead of helping the citizens instead made a name and a life of herself lavishing using the government money.”

      First of all, you can’t blame GMA for every baby born into poverty everyday. GMA is not accountable for every citizen’s decision to keep making babies they cannot feed. Citizens should not depend solely on the government for their livelihood. Mature individuals should also be more proactive in making their public servants do their jobs while they are still in office. And that includes taking interest in how low ranking public servants in city halls do their jobs. Most Filipinos are guilty of neglecting their duty in being vigilant about where their taxes go.

      Second, how do you know GMA just used the government money to “make a name for herself”? She actually did a good job shielding the Philippines from getting the full brunt of the global financial crisis that hit Europe and Amerca really hard. Of course this is something that will simply fly over your head.

      Please try to use critical analysis before blaming someone. Your comment gives people the impression that Filipinos had nothing to do with how some public servants get away stealing public funds.

      1. “Please try to use critical analysis before blaming someone.” I once worked in the HR of the country’s largest companies and this is one major job dimension that is sorely lacking in most job applicants.

    3. “They want justice from GMA due to the fact that many citizens are suffering from poverty and job loss because the Ex-President instead of helping the citizens instead made a name and a life of herself lavishing using the government money. ” – PaigeH

      I’m sure lots of Filipinos would do the same given the opportunity. πŸ˜€

    4. They fought for what they thought as freedom but they were betrayed. They didn’t win, the Oligarchs did. Look around you, see what the People Power brought us? I wasn’t born yet at that time but it doesn’t make me blind of what is happening around me. Now I witness the products of that overrated event, they don’t look pretty and of course it is something that your history books and local TV shows won’t ever bother telling you.

    5. Well, I’m not the only one saying Filipinos are mayabang and arrogant. It’s perhaps a very human trait, but “human” doesn’t mean “right.” Filipinos just seem to show it more than others, and it’s apparent in the culture.

      And on Filipinos “fighting for what they believe is right…” As the Bible says, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.” Sometimes, things that people may believe to be right… are actually wrong.

    6. @paigeh:

      “huwag nyo naman lahatin” or some equivalent is the same lame excuse you proud-to-be-pinoy types use over and over again. it’s really old. (and lame.)

      don’t let abscbn do your thinking for you. stop being living proof that filipinos are absolutely GULLIBLE.

      please lang, kung ayaw nyong lahatin, gamitin ang kukote. baka sakaling maging mas maraming gumagamit ng utak na pinoy balang araw, by then you can really complain na hindi dapat lahatin.

  4. Katulad nga ng sbi ni Tito Noy, huhulihin nya ang pinakamarami na magnakaw at wala nang iba yan kundi si Gloria. Ngayon, nagdiriwang ang sambayanang Pilipino sa tagumpay na ito.

      1. Lahat huhulihin pero ang uunahin ang mraming ninakaw, at hnd lang magnanakaw si Gloria, sinungaling pa at mamamatay tao! Dapat dyan ibitay

    1. “The point here is due process Γ’β‚¬β€œ innocent until proven guilty. ”

      Hindi mo siguro maintindihan ang ibig sabihin nito.

      1. Lahad naman sa publiko ang korapsyon na ginawa ni Gloria kaya alm na ntin ang mgging resulta ng korte, kung baliktad man ang desisyon, malamang binayaran yan.

      2. Vincenzo, you’re trolling once again.

        Then how about the Aquinos paying the media to make things look good in their part. That is much worse.

        Yours is nothing but pure hearsay and conspiracy theories. All of your crap must be stopped.

    2. Glorify his name! He is not your tito noy! He is der great Fuhrer! Der Fuhrer’s fault is that he has a deep seated fixation of obsessive hatred against Frau Arroyo and her family! Surely you and the others of the master yellow race can forgive him for his hate-think which started before he became Fuhrer! A long time ago the word alleged and the puny democratic right of presumption of innocence was discarded. He loves carnivals of the political kind just as he loves electronic games! Yes, he loves playing with people’s lives as he utterly destroys characters of perceived enemies of the state! Der Fuhrer is a political animal when it suits him! Totally ruthless and merciless against his perceived enemies of the state! He is the state! The greatest Fuhrer of the nutzie state! Sieg heil Vincenzo! Heil Der brilliant and capable Fuhrer! The greatest son of the nutzie state! His brilliant genius created the political carnival atmosphere of cruelty, hate, loathing and ridicule against the perceived corrupt class! He will go down in history as der Fuhrer who destroys puny democracy and reich society for he is the law! Heil!

      1. Hindi sinira ni Tito Noy ang demokrasya. Mas pinapaboran nya lang ang nakakarami tulad noong magtangkang tumakas si Gloria. Harapin nya muna ang kanyang kasalanan sa taumbayan.

      2. Vincenzo: Lies. Your Tito ABNOY destroyed democracy when he ignored the law.

        At least Marcos allowed his father Ninoy to go overseas for medical treatment. Ang mga sinasabi mong mga ‘taumbayan’ ay mga psychopaths na tulad mo din who always go emo on GMA and all nonsense.

        Pareho kayo ng Tito Noy mo. Parehong may MENTAL ILLNESS. πŸ™‚

    3. “pinakamarami na magnakaw at wala nang iba yan kundi si Gloria…”

      Grabe! Ang dami pala ni Gloria! Marami pala siyang clone! Di kaya siya ang Filipino version ng Elpeo Puru? hehehe

  5. Filipinos are the most self-destructive people on this planet. If the only people in this world were Filipinos they would find a way to destroy themselves.

    We always like to blame other nations for they way they treat Filipinos but we turn a blind eye at the way Filipinos treat each other, we are our worst enemy. You just have to watch the way Filipinos behave at work to understand that they have a slave mentality. The minute someone has 100peso more than us we start addressing him as boss and start kissing his ass.

    People talk about Filipinos fighting for their rights, what a sad joke that is. People Power was never about the rights of the 95% lower class it was about the 5% stinking rich who used the poor to get into power.

    We preach religion to everyone but we never practice what we preach, religion is about forgiveness, love and humility but we are the most vindictive and vengeful people on earth.

    We claim to be conservative but children start having sex at the age of 14 and we have a higher percentage of single mothers than the entire Europe put together.

    There is no divorce here but we treat marriage certificates and vows as garbage. People fall in and out of love like they are in the 100 wives marathon.

    We are a backward nation who live in the early 1900 thinking that their is gold on the streets in other countries, instead of focusing on improving this beautiful country.

    Our politicians, Doctors, Singers, Dancer and Actors are a joke, in any other country no one would even look at them but here in this sub-standard culture we strive to be like them.

    We have been brainwashed for so many years by stupid TV shows, movies and teleseries that we have started to live life like we are on the set.

    The day Filipinos will become brave, the day we will wake up from our zombie state will be the day we will be able to fight for whats right, until then this cycle will continue.

    1. I agree with you. If the Filipinos were the only population here on earth, then mankind will eliminate himself faster than the meteor that wiped off dinosaurs from the face of the planet.

      I hate working with my fellow kapatid because they spend so much time focusing on trivial matters but thanks to them I am becoming a better person each day. It just gets a wee bit exhausting, though.

    2. Ang cnsbi mong negative sa bansa ay ksalanan ni Gloria, hndi man lang inayos ang problema puro pangungurakot lang gngwa.

      1. Is THAT Gloria’s fault? Sorry, troll harder.

        Like I said, it’s easy to say Gloria is corrupt yet it’s hard to admit that we, as citizens, are corrupt.

  6. Gerechtigkeit Fuhrer! The brilliance of his nutzie state justice is astounding!It is also frightening as he terrorizes the enemies of the state!

    Gestapo Chief Delima in promoting hate-think should be rewarded by der Fuhrer! Frau Delima just recently warned the reich trial court judge Mupas. Frau Delima told him to “be extra careful” in granting house arrest to the pinned yellow star of David, frau Arroyo! Yes, it is true that Gestapo Chief Delima was trying to influence the reich judicial officer in her unswerving loyalty to serve the personal interests of Der Fuhrer!

    It is publicly known that der Fuhrer has a fixation of obsessive hatred against the perceived enemies of his very sound and brilliant nutzie mind! His great leadership as captain of the ship of state is unquestionable! His focus of hate-think on state corruption has just begun! Heil the great nutzie dictator!

  7. Why is a baccalaureate degree required to be a police officer in the Philippines? Four year degrees are not required for police officers in many countries including Canada, the USA, etc.? The Philippines is arbitrarily dismissing and overlooking a significant and its most able and robust labor force of men and women between the ages of 20 to 30 to serve their country as police officers. Yet these same labor force lacking a college degree are fully qualified to serve in the armed forces of the Philippines. Honest, hard working persons of good character are the basics of being a good police officer. Yet these taxpaying, honest, hard working, law abiding citizens will never get the opportunity to serve as honest, hard working police offers with high moral standards of conduct and integrity because they don’t have a four year degree in any major field of study. Not everything or all that is needed is learned, obtained or taught at four year colleges to be a good police officer. Periodic training and updated training is essential for ALL police officers even those having four year degrees. Do away with the requirement for a four year degree and you will no longer have a shortage of able-bodied candidates for police officers. This will also go a long way to promoting inclusiveness, community and good governance. I have recruited, qualified and interviewed candidates for both local, county, state and federal law enforcement positions including police officers, sheriffs, investigators, various federal agents, customs officers, etc. The irony here is that while Philippine citizens without four year degrees may cannot serve their country as police officers, they can be considered for police officer jobs in other countries without having to be a citizen of those other counties such as Canada, the USA, etc.

    1. Kasalanan tlaga ni Gloria ito, tumaas ang krimen sa bansa dahil hindi naiibibigay sa pulis ang tamang pondo. Remember chopper deal? Isang patunay na sinungaling, mamamatay tao at magnanakaw ang mga ito.

      1. And Noynoy is not a murderer? Then how about the Hacienda Luisita Massacre? The Manila Bus Hostage Crisis and even the 19 soldiers killed under his watch.

        Sinungaling ka, Vincenzo. Kasingtulad mo din ang mga pulitikong sinungaling. πŸ˜›

      2. Prove your allegations first against GMA Idi0t troll.
        Sinasabi mo na walang pinatay ang mga Aquino? Anung tawag mo sa nangyari sa HL Massacre at Mendiola Massacre pati ang hostage crisis?

      3. I told u, its already in the news. TV Patrol, 24 Oras. Wala nang bgo sa mata ng mamamayan. Alam na namin na si Gloria ang t0t0ong sinungaling at magnanakaw. Plibhasa kayu mga byaran ni Gloria

      4. Vincenzong Bayaran:

        Palibhasa din bayaran ka ni Noynoy at ni Ricky Carandang. And GMA7 isn’t that stupid because ABS-CBN have biased news since they have have ties with Aquinos.

        Totoong sinungaling at magnanakaw si Gloria? Prove it in court. Puro kasinungalingan din iyan ung sa iyo dahil you have no evidence. Puro haka-haka lang ang sinasabi mo. πŸ˜›

      5. As usual vincenzo idiot, you dont have any evidence that we are “bayaran” ni gloria. Prove it first you stupid prick.

  8. all vincenzo’s inane and infantile rants courtesy of caradangs ‘ little yellow book of trolling’ and ‘trolling for dummies’ specifically written for those with low iq.

    1. Through our responses to Vincenzo the troll, the yellow Comm group gets to read the general pulse of society—a means to gauge public perception. To him/them, providing justification for their claims is not necessary. They just need to elicit a reaction in order to pick our brains.

      If he rather trolls on blog sites that cater more to a lower IQ audience, his strategy of saturating a blog site into submission may even work. Not here though.

      1. If it was a pokemon game it would be like this:

  9. “They may enjoy seeing others suffering as Ò€œrevengeÒ€ for their own condition Γ’β‚¬β€œ even if the one they are jeering is not responsible for their condition.”


    what’s happening is there is this “lynch mob” mentality driven by “mass hysteria” brought about by propaganda. really nasty nazi tactics happening.

    my husband and i were wondering why people are so angry at gma – arroyo, not the network – who really has no direct impact on their lives THEN and especially now. i mean, would their lives really be affected by the outcome of all these “developments” in gma’s cases? my bet is that they will still have the same problems that they have faced day in day out even from waaay back. that is, unless they are surnamed aquino or cojuangco.

    1. the past 50 years have been about the same 5/6 families trying to get as rich as they can through deceit, stealing , triad involvement etc.
      they have never shown any interest in the country except as cheap labour and easy money so they are all cut from the same cloth.
      the cojuangcos-aquinos just happen to be the worst of the lot.

  10. Sa karamihang filipino na nakikita ko po ay hindi gaanung pinapansin ang mga isyu na yan, mas nakatuon ang pansin nila ky Piolo at Kc.
    nakakainis nga! madami na akong nilagay sa FB na news kahit isa wala man lang ng comment o kahit like lang, pero nung naglagay ako ng showbiz ang dami kaagad nag-like, puro comment pa.
    Yung mga sinasabi mo po na ganyan tungkol kay Gloria na reaksyon ng mga pinoy ay sa Telebisyon ko lang po nakikita, kahit nga dito sa opisina hindi napaguusapan gaanu yung ganyan
    baka nadadala ka lang po ng media

    1. Actually, tama din ang sinabi mo. Kung makulong man si GMA o hindi, walang pakialam ang karamihan sa mga Filipino. Kung may panganib sa kanilang karapatan, wala ring pakialam. Basta ang ayaw nilang mawalang karapatan ang mag-usisa sa buhay ng iba, lalo na mga showbiz stars. Kaya walang asenso ang bayan.

    2. and all this time i thought i am the most unpopular person in this world. i have been sending articles here and there just to stir up even an argument; i do not even mind having Vincenzo-like morons to argue with. but all i get from these people are “stares”, then they go back to their yakking about showbiz and telenovela. somebody sent me a message though: “get a life!” and it got me thinking, if this is the kind of life i want to live, to be involved with issues that will have strong impact with my future; i wonder, what kind of life they want to live?

      1. Just draw inspiration from the fact that most people who went on to achieve great, innovative, and often counterintuitive things were the ones who did not conform nor subject themselves to what was popular. They were the people who begged to differ even in the face of overwhelming groupthink and stampede mentalities. And that is what GRP is all about we beg to differ. πŸ˜‰

      1. kaya pa rin dumarami pa lalo ang pokpok at drug mules, dahil bagsak pa rin ang ekonomiya, salamat kay AbNoy at mga pinoprotektahan niyang mga KKK.

      2. Hindi nakatututok ang ABnoy mo sa trabaho. Nakatutok siya sa PSP niya, kaya nagkaproblema tayo last year sa hostage crisis na hindi niya NATUTUKAN!

  11. Just listened to a radio (DZMM?)commentator appealing to emotion. Arroyo-is-a-criminal blah blahs. Must be Vicenzio’s role model.

    This mediaman deserves to be ampatuanized, imo.

    1. no such thing as pro-life when you are not pro-Pnoy.. you have rights if you are one of the yes-men of our great dear leader…

  12. so, how much do you think the likes of carandang pays the likes of vincenzo to troll all websites that are critical to the yellow army and their leader? baka pede mag-apply sayang din pambayad ng tax…

  13. i was reading the comments and goodness daming rage!!! can’t we just simply say it like this: this is a good insight of what is happening to us today. let’s work together to improve our lives by slowly moving forward using what we have learned from the past.

    ang hindi marunong lumingon sa pinang galingan ay di makakarating sa paroroonan.

    let’s learn from the past and to have a better future.

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