Aquino’s bad call on DAP

A little diplomacy goes a long way. Photo courtesy of

President Benigno S. Aquino III’s combative speech defending the controversial Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) on national television has elicited mixed reactions. Those from political figures seemed to follow party lines, but reactions in social media tended to be negative. Mr. Aquino, reeling from one scandal after another, has also suffered a plunge …

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Bhumibol’s last hurrah?

In a recent essay on the military take-over in Bangkok, one noted farang observer of Thai politics, Professor Benedict Anderson, quoted renowned Marxist thinker Antonio Gramsci: “When the old refuses to die, and the new struggles to be born, monsters appear.” It appears that Thailand’s old royalist order that used to dominate much of the country’s economic …

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Philippine senators should focus on real security, not EDCA.

They kicked Americans out in the name of national pride, but did not allot the money to defend that pride. Photo from

Philippine Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago has expressed confidence that the Supreme Court will rule the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement  (EDCA) between the Philippines and the United States as unconstitutional. This is exactly what’s wrong with the debate on the security of the Philippines: Even in the Senate, senators debate on technicalities with …

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The Bolivarian Revolution: The new holding action toward socialism?

Editor’s Note: This is the conclusion of a three-part commentary by Mr. Maguddayao on the current turmoil in Venezuela. Read the first part, Chavez’s 21st Century Socialism, here; and the second part, Venezuela Deals With Violent Challenge to Socialist Regime, here. Venezuela’s renewal of socialism—the first after the fall of the Soviet Union—has …

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