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The Duterte administration and the politics of accommodation * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary 

The Duterte administration and the politics of accommodation

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat perspective Despite his tough guy, macho image and no-holds-barred, brash manner of speaking, President Duterte is turning out to be a practitioner of the politics of accommodation. Just yesterday, July 19, former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo walked out free, after being held in custody, albeit in a hospital, for most of the previous Aquino administration’s term. One may say that it was the Supreme Court who set her free, purportedly for lack of evidence. It is also true that the dismissal of charges due to weak evidence…

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A decision with historical implications * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary 

A decision with historical implications

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat perspective The tribunal of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea finally, after one year, issued its decision affirming that the islands being disputed by China and the Philippines, namely the Scarborough Shoal and Spratly Islands, are within the exclusive economic zone of the Philippines. It also ruled that China violated Philippine sovereign rights when it prevented Filipino fishermen from fishing in the area, created artificial islands, and did not act to prevent Chinese fishermen from fishing in the area. It also called…

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A show of political will or disregard for due process? * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary Top Stories 

A show of political will or disregard for due process?

Since the beginning of his campaign for the presidency, Rodrigo Duterte has been accused of disregarding due process, especially with his endorsement of extrajudicial killings of suspected criminals by the so-called Davao death squad. His campaign promise of ending criminality and the drug menace within the first six months into his presidency stirred reactions of disbelief, on one hand, and fears that he would run roughshod on human rights on the other.

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The beginning of the Duterte administration * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary 

The beginning of the Duterte administration

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat perspective The country has a new president in Rodrigo Roa Duterte. His induction as the 16th president of the Philippines had none of the pomp of previous presidential inaugurations. According to the Malacañang website, seven presidents were inaugurated at the Quirino Grandstand, three at the Legislative building in Manila, three in different venues due to extraordinary circumstances – Cory Aquino at Club Filipino, Marcos at the Rizal Ceremonial Hall in 1986, and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, in 2001, at the EDSA Shrine – and four outside Manila: Emilio…

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Youth unemployment, a scourge of neoliberalism * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary 

Youth unemployment, a scourge of neoliberalism

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat perspective One major issue that the incoming Duterte administration has to address is youth unemployment. The government’s National Economic Development Authority is alarmed at the high unemployment rate of the youth. According to the Labor Force Survey, 50.1 percent of the 2.594 million unemployed people, in April 2016, are from the youth, comprising the 15 to 24 age group. This translates to 1.3 million unemployed youth. The ratio of the unemployed youth to the total labor force stood at 14.6 percent, more than twice the 6.1…

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Why are mass shootings so frequent in America? * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary 

Why are mass shootings so frequent in America?

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat perspective The Orlando shooting at the Pulse club, considered as the deadliest mass shooting in US history so far, shocked the world. Aside from the fact that there were 49 killed and 50 wounded, the cold, methodical manner by which it was carried out makes one wonder how much hate there was in the gunman to be able to do such a horrendous crime. Hate must have figured in the mass killing as it was done in a popular gay bar. But perhaps, it was not…

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Neoliberalism and greater Inequality * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary 

Neoliberalism and greater Inequality

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat perspective The country is ushering in a new administration by the month’s end. While previous administrations came and went, the neoliberal agenda has remained. There has been no deviation from the neoliberal policies that have been implemented since the time of the Marcos dictatorship. However, since incoming Pres. Rodrigo Duterte has promised to implement change and address poverty, there could be some space for discussions on the direction that the country would take. One topic that immediately sparked a debate is on neoliberal economics. Progressive multisectoral…

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Outrage justified, killings of journalists definitely not * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary 

Outrage justified, killings of journalists definitely not

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat perspective There has already been a lot of outrage from different media groups, local and international, over the statement of President-elect Rodrigo Duterte, which practically endorsed the killing of journalists. The National Union of Journalists in the Philippines, the Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility, Visayas journalists, the Committee to Protect Journalists, and Reporters Without Borders, all condemned the statement of Duterte. The Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines expressed alarm over Duterte’s statement. The Reporters Without Borders went so far as to demand an apology…

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Poverty may as well be the #1 cause of death * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary 

Poverty may as well be the #1 cause of death

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat perspective Here is an interesting article from Agence France-Presse and published by The Telegraph, also locally by Interaksyon.com, “Financial crisis caused 500,000 extra cancer deaths, according to Lancet study.” The study, which was originally published by the Lancet medical journal, revealed that there were around 260,000 “excess cancer deaths” in OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries from 2008-2010. The OECD is comprised of the 34 richest countries in the world. For the European Union alone, there were 160,000 excess cancer deaths, in the US…

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Does Duterte’s win reflect a protest vote? * Latest Posts Bulatlat Perspective Commentary Top Stories 

Does Duterte’s win reflect a protest vote?

By BENJIE OLIVEROS Bulatlat Prespective Former Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte is, as of this writing, poised to take over the presidency with his insurmountable lead over his closest rivals. He is not the “presidential type” with his brash manners, foul language, single-mindedness, and “un-statesmanlike” conduct – such as when he asked the Australian and US ambassadors to shut up – but it appears that it is these very same characteristics that propelled him to the presidency. Why? Right from the very start of the campaign period – long before…

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