Saturday, October 31, 2009


By Lualhati Madlangawa-Guerrero

"Terrorist", "Subversive", "Anti-family", "Anti-god". These are the words spoken against a man whose leadership in the National Democratic struggle was and is known for. But to me, he is a poetry writer and a good socio-political analyst-especially when it comes to literature as well as in political science. That man is better known as Prof. JOSE MARIA SISON.

Studied back then in Ateneo and Letran, finished college in UP for literature, "JOMA" as his colleauges called him, was famous for writing poetry as well as in discussing about politics, especially during the days he taught English literature and founding the Kabataang Makabayan in 1964. And this man I think really practise his works well as a literature professor-since some of the works he may have read was and is well connected with the realities happened not just in the Philippines, but also in the rest of the world, wherein rebellion is both good and evil.

And through his poetry perhaps, his deepest thought and experiences throughout his life turned into well versed words, and upon reading it shows how his life, from his professor days, protest days, to prison and eventually exile were being turned into poems of, like a Rizalian or a Bonifacio type, or even of Mao's, mostly of life, sorrow, struggle, and redemption. And I think that, in every poem he hath written shows his love of country, of people, of a need for change, of calling for struggle, and some may show his persona-even love and humor perhaps.

Last time, I was listening to one of his poems turned into music; and thinking that the melodies being played into his poetry are kind of gothic, gothic minus the total gloom, gothic with a bit of deathly appearance, ambient somehow as it shows-just like the people's chorale version of his poem turned song "The Guerrilla is like a poet."

The Guerilla is Like a Poet -

The melody somehow reminds of Evanescence, Within Temptation, and any other goth bands playing like that, however people may unexpect that the person who created that poem being played in a gloomy-like tune is a political prisoner accused of being subversive and being character assassinated by some groups against him, from the rightists in the congress to the rightists in the youtube and other internet sites! And as for the poem, also shows the gothic-ness within it as one part says:
"the inner silence, the outer innocence..."

Other poems-turned-songs are even consider it as near-gothic upon listening especially to its tune, "The bladed poem" perhaps, "Poems and rest" and even "Rose for a waking woman" carried a sense wherein like a gothic poet, living in dark but then trying to express emotion inside. Joma for me is a goth-like writer, goth minus the stereotypical appearance like in the subculture, but in some of his poems? or even in the songs out of his work like the ones being said? Somehow shows that even in a bit, he may be. So why not goth or folk metal bands create a label consists of Jose Maria Sison's poems turned songs?

The Bladed Poem - JOMA

Poems and Rest - Musikang Bayan

rose for a waking woman - joma

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


by Lualhati Madlangawa-Guerrero

Yesterday, I was called up by my friend through the phone to say that tomorrow I will go to their party in a restaurant in Avenida Rizal in Manila, and I was quite thinking that party, wherein my classmates since highschool were involved, may again turn into a fiasco to me since most of these people may do something against me, well... these ex-classmates of mine are mostly my enemies, who tried much in letting me in and doing something against me at the same time.

At the same time, my activist friend called me through the telephone, and I immediately talked to her, only to say to me that I need to go to their hangout for a meeting, well... I said to her that my schedule seemed to be too messy out of such requests being compelled to me, but then I politely spoke to her that I will try to go there.

The nest day,
As I prepared myself to meet their pleas, the telephone rung again, and instead, my classmate still wanted me to go to the party. I agreed and even said that I am prepared to go there. But on the other hand, I even think that party might end again as a fiasco and instead I will use that event to go instead where my comrades stayed. And thus, after a brief talk, I immediately went out and with a tranvia ride to avenida, I landed in Sta. Cruz where my friends were waiting.

I was quite happy at first since I met again my so-called "old friends" or rather say my "enemies" since highschool. And with some talks, some of my friends recall such memories that seemed nice to remember while I spoke through; but one of my classmate seemed trying to ruin through saying something against me, and I kept on ignoring then reprimanding that person for saying such things! Others simply laugh at me while I am trying to keep on ignoring them. These people somehow are again, trying to underestimate me-trying to backstab me while we're walking to go to the restaurant wherein we or rather say they supposed to eat.

But lucky that my closest activist friend sought me and wanted me to go to the meeting, there I simply said to her at first that I am with my friends, and I need to be with them, but since that these people may do a fiasco out of me, I changed my mind and instead I joined with my comrade.
But how about my "Classmates?"
My classmates were surprised as I met my comrade in the sidewalk, and they even tried much in going to me with them, but then I changed my mind and said that I am going with her since it was important to me at that time, as well as my decision to go with my comrade for the meeting! There my classmates didn't talk at all, and instead they walked away while the two of us simply left them and went wherein my comrades waiting for me.

That event seemed to me unusual, since a "guardian angel" came forth to rescue me from those people who again make a ruin out of me! I'm kinda sick and tired of them anyway, especially from their attempts and insults although some events came from them may have bring joy, but still my life with them end up with so many scars in my mind that cannot be healed and stayed dormant forever; unlike those who from the struggle who really understands and even knows what is right and what is wrong in their actions based on what being taught to them, or rather to say to us.

And thus,
In this writeup, I simply narrated that event since all of them, although they are my "friends" or rather say "people involved in my life" in general, are still different. One is my comrade, who really helps me while at the same time being with me in the struggle, the other one is just my former classmate, who, along with the others, are trying much in bonding with me while most of them tried much in ruining me again! Both of them may contributed much in my life, from the days in school to the days in R&R (Rest and Recreation), it makes kinda sensible to me, but others tend to destroy friendship and even plotting to assassinate (not physically) a person's character whom they called as a friend! I simply recalled most of the time wherein they insulted me, offended me, and even underestimated me despite having good works to them, but then time changes and I don't like to repeat that again-especially to a person who used to carry a book, reading or a sketchpad and a pencil drawing. Worst is that a person who know how to draw is a person who faced insults most of the time.

So to whom I will choose? The one who constructs or the the other who destroys? The one who rectifies errors or the one who insults after creating an error? The one who sometimes supports in the spirit of camaraderie or the other who simply think of it as if a chance? Perhaps history will decide who is more of a part of me and not.

Sunday, October 25, 2009



While I was walking towards my last class, I was thinking about the situation prevailing today, for most of the youth I usually see are becoming too "contented" than of an "idealist" regarding the society.

What makes me say that these people are contented was because these people are contenting much in two idea-actions prevailing amongst themselves: of studies and of vices. These two are somewhat as if an addictive substance that may end up beneficial or corrupt, worse is that they may not care much about the outcome around the society-just because they focused much on themselves.

But these youth are trying hard to say that they are the nation's hope, but how come they are the nation's hope if they are just contenting with themselves than of joining with the people? Somehow they tried much in studying and enjoying, and may think that activism or other mass work may affect their usual actions-and even criticizing that they are "subversive", "unrealistic", "tardy", but how come they are just because they don't go to school most of the time? Of not contenting just like them? Of not not enjoying like theirs? Or of being insecure because of their ideas?

A over-contented, apolitical, asocietal youth is not the youth of Rizal, Bonifacio, Evangelista, Luna, or any other patriot, but of Fray Miguel Lucio y Bustamante. And these people, just like Bustamante's Tandang Basio Macunat, thinks that man must be contented than of doing something for a positive change; since Fray Bustamante, through Tandang Basio said that better for a Filipino to stay in his farm and tend his carabao than of studying in Manila or he may end up addicted in vices around him. If I put Bustamante in a modern day context, I may say that a student must content in the four corners of the room and studying for a long long time, and even enjoying much in the computer shop, billard hall, or company of skimpy clothed women than of joining in a rally for "it may cause harm to them." Bah! Is this what we call tomorrow's hope? Of becoming Basio Macunat than of Bonifacio? Of speaking like Fray Bustamante than of Jose Rizal?

Jose Rizal, through his work El Filibusterismo, sought how Huli end up committed suicide just because of her ceaseless prayer and working with Hermana Penchang for she thinks that it may change their lives, only to end up being raped by a priest; while on real side of Philippine History, Lorena Barros, with her idealism and of realities around, joined in the struggle for national democracy and of women's emancipation despite her background; for sure we may say that we may choose Lorena over Huli, but the ones contenting and at the same time choosing Lorena are acting like Huli than Lorena! How contradicting!

For sure people may criticize for saying that more and more Basio Macunats will come around the world, for they don't think of an outcome wherein these people are simply thinking too little in a guise of enough-of contenting in short activities of life: of being contented in the four corners of home, school, computer shop, school again, workplace. More and more Basio Macunats will come if they are not opened to reality, more and more Basio Macunats will rise if they not reivive their consciouness, and more and more Basio Macunats will dominate if they content all of their lives.

Saturday, October 24, 2009



(This writeup may consider unsuitable to those whom likely to oppose before reading it, otherwise, you need to think before you do.)

Before I wrote this, I looked at the current situation man used to see. I always used to see that man is always the actor and audience of every scene. but most of the audience, upon looking it, offer a little or nothing-for they always look at their own interests, or rather say "they don't like to get involve".

These people are also used to judge without carrying action for it, most of their criticism are rather subjective rather than objective, or I should say destructive than constructive. These people are ought to act noting too-since they prefer not to get involve and minding their own business as they always do, leaving anything aside worth nothing for them.

But what they called nothing may likely to overcome them. As more and more disenfranchised people may overcome these "Know nothing" people in this society. Like promoting direct mass action, civil disobedience, or even physical violence against social and political enemies as a way of inspiring the masses and catalyzing the people's revolution both legal or illegal.

Most of these incidents, illegal incidents rather, are promoted by urban partisan groups in setting fourth a revolution amongst the masses in the urban populace; while on the rural populace, peasant revolts appeared, mostly armed. Upon looking through, these incidents are risen from the basic problems appeared in every country, like discrimination, maltreatment, and of course, disenfranchisement of peoples in the realms of politics, economy, culture and lastly military affairs. For at first, the world is separated into two: The oppressor and the oppressed.

According to Carlo Pisacane, an Italian revolutionary, he stated that:
"ideas spring from deeds and not the other way around... The use of the bayonet in Milan has produced a more effective propaganda than a thousand books."
Somehow his words spoke of utilizing armed struggle as propaganda, whose actions are directly against the enemy and at the same time calls every people, particularly the oppressed to join the struggle. The idea of a mass action acting as propaganda may likely for people to encourage through-mostly the oppressed masses in rising up and eventually insurrect,to a stage where a massive battle has been set. The use of action speaks louder than words spoke or books written and read.
Same as what Johann Most said that he advocated publicizing violent acts of retaliation against counter-revolutionaries because:
"we preach not only action in and for itself, but also action as propaganda."

I used to think that these kinds of action increases the will of every people to rise up and fight-especially that the problem, the basic problem remains intact. And so was what Mao Zedong said that, concerning the people's war:
"China's masses are the greatest conceivable weapon for fighting against Japanese imperialism and domestic reactionaries. Basic strategic points for war against the Kuomintang are also enumerated."
And on revolutionary heroism that:
"The same limitless creative energy of the masses is also visible in the army, in their fighting style and indomitable will."
Upon looking through, these kind of acts made by the revolutionaries also act as a propaganda in setting fourth the said plan for liberation. An act to encourage the oppressed to join through-from the streets to the field, from the buildings to the forests, from the stone to the grenade and lastly: from the plackard to the rifle.

Once, I think of these ideas may catalyze the idea of liberating humanity from the stereotypical humanity we used to-humanity today is a mere facelift, a mere piece of paper written, or at worst-humanity for humanity's sake, a bogus kind of concept-idea which is too contrary to the ideas of the people. Real humanity vested on total action, total deed, since more and more are in need of an immediate action based on what they seen and judged rather than being seen, judged and nothing at all. Or rather say that through these acts and deeds made by the revolution and its people whom used to serve, more and more will rise rise up from its slumber and join in its ranks to continue the massive struggle set through.



The nation, or rather say the world today is more like a ghetto, a squatter like community of peoples likely to live under great duress and pleasure around it. The worst part is the instability of the state and its trying hard plans of every leader or every legislature in setting up every plans to stabilize-only to survive this unending mess set for years.

The demoralization of every people may likely to arise more than ever as this problem continues to remain intact, as reforms may likely to call it as a mere facelift, a front for a contrasting activities or movements created. People are like trees, and if fire erupts in one of them, may likely to start a massive fire. And so are the people-if a problem erupts, and so are the people, it may likely to have burden out of it.

This calls for a radical change-this calls for raising the black lantern of struggle and have it lit with its shining red rays of freedom! As the political, social, economic, and even cultural turmoil continues to interfere every people and every nation around the world will make it worse than ever before, likely to swell, to aggravate the suffering of every people out of the system which was and is remain intact.

I even pointed out that the rotten system-the core of the instability must be destroyed by the force of the working masses all over the world, from the pen of the writer to the gun of a militant fighter. Total transformation lies not just in a broad based and focused social reform or reforming one's self with discipline, but a drastic militant struggle supported by the action of masses in disbanding the old system-to free from inefficiency, corruption and instability of every nation-state all over the world, set by the force of militant masses against the common enemy.

Mass Media, Propaganda, and the Society

Mass Media, Propaganda, and the Society

Today, Mass media is more like a tool used to propagate the bourgeois kind of society prevailing. Since most of it pertains to the extravagant lifestyle which is contrast to the realities we encounter. Marred by the intervention and manipulation by the bourgeoisie and the imperialists, liquidations of some journalists and other media practitioners, and censorship of every work of art, still, every people still wanted to seek the truth, aside from those kind of truths prevailing today. Thanks to the use of alternative media in disseminating the truths and information given to them, in spite of anomalies and problems set though in pursuit of destroying it Many people find ways on seeking truth from facts in pursuit of what is going on and what is the truth behind the facts, the myths set fourth in the society today.

First and foremost, Mass media, a part of human society, is a contributor of human affairs, especially in giving ideas and events to every people. It is serve as a propaganda tool in disseminating the pros and cons of every individual or every group in pursuit of their beliefs they must defend or offend, as part of our daily lives in giving entertainment and in educating every citizen in this kind of struggling world we belong. However, we must state that It is not true that broadcasting, or rather say mass media in general can exist as a separate entity what outside, or rather say the current age that it portrays. it is more than any form of public life it has the duty to reflect and give expression in every human life, to our time and it requires to hear the needs, and demands of our time. Especially from the toiling masses whom used to get to know about the issue or having some time to get inspired at the stories being seen, played or heard.

In fact, our line in Mass Media, as part of Literature and art, must be according to the ideas of every people, both its creator and the audience, whether it is real or from its imagination, in giving life through the art of writing to the use of radio and in television. We must also respond to the aspirations of the people, primarily the masses since they are the majority of the viewers and readers of our works to be read or viewn. It must also shown the ideas, real ideas what the writer has made as well as the ideas what the people wanted to say, rather than the ideas vested by a clique of others, especially the subjectivist bourgeois thought as what mainstream media used to do. From visual art to the realms of music and in the internet.

Upon doing this, this idea of mass media as a part of society shows that every people needs a voice to propagate, guided by new ideas in spreading words which can be recorded and left into history. Especially in giving the people a chance to hear, to see, to read every word which is to entertain, to educate, to propagate new ideas since the people had the demand, the need for it. As what Mao Zedong said to us that: "Let a hundred flowers bloom, let the hundred schools of thought contend." And so through these words given, we must speak out against problems in the society. And using media as a weapon, we will surely encourage every people to arouse, organize and mobilize against the threat we are trying to destroy-all in the name of the masses, guided by the will of the progressive people as a main collective force and a vanguard of democracy. Defending it against all subversive acts of hostile elements at home and abroad.

In my own perspective about media, the strength of media, from print to television lies in creating the right mix of entertainment, enjoyment, education, instruction, and politics. Every plan, experiment are made by every writer or practitioner to be disseminated to every people Since the need for a new idea, a new culture, a new stage has been set through by the will of the people. Made and guided by free men and new ideas according to the needs and wants of the entire masses. We must know that we intellectuals, along with farmers and workers must be considered as the Architects and Engineers of the human soul, whether he or she is a writer, a broadcaster, a journalist, a preacher, even a farmer and a lowly messenger may do for the sake of the people whether it carries the purpose of being productive or defensive rather than destructive the goals and aspirations of the people since we wanted to have these people be imbued with an new idea according to their will. We must consider that our production of ideas is more important than the production of materials needed for creating a strong nation, and therefore we must be proud of it.

Friday, October 23, 2009


(based on the national anthem of the People's Republic of China)

Arise! You who refuse to be enslaved!
Let's stand up and bond like walls out of our great flesh and blood
Facing with a world now in a greatest peril
United with a struggle and a common cry:
Arise! Arise! Arise!
All of us with one heart
Braving the enemy's fire, March on!
Braving the enemy's fire, March on!
March on! March on! On!

March on! People of different nations!
With our struggle as guide, vanguard leading in a long march,
Millions now one, united with one goal
Creating, building, protecting with our struggle:
March on! March on! March on!
We will for generations
Rise high the great red banner*, march on!
Rise high the great red banner, march on!
March on! March on! On!

*or "Rise high Mao Zedong's Banner"

This English version being made was an indirect translation of the Chinese national anthem made by Tien Han and Nie Er during the Sino-Japanese war. However, it was became famous at first for being a song in a film made since 1935, wherein people sung it while marching and carrying guns.

But during the foundation of the Chinese People's Republic, people unanimously accepted the hymn as its provisional national anthem. According to Chou Enlai, especially in the third part:
"We still have imperialist enemies in front of us. The more we progress in development, the more the imperialists will hate us, seek to undermine us, attack us. Can you say that we won't be in peril?"
In these words, Mao Zedong agreed upon to what Chou said, since some writers found contradicting regarding the third part of the song.

After the cultural revolution (wherein the hymn was banned and instead "Dong Fang Hong" was being played as a semi-national anthem status), the March of the Volunteers was restored by the National People's Congress in 1978 (the era of Hua Guofeng), but with different lyrics; however, these new lyrics were never very popular and caused a great deal of confusion. For example, the last sentence of the lyrics read "inherit the thinking of Chairman Mao".

And due to the confusion regarding the lyrics, the original version was restored in 1982, followed by declaring it as the official national anthem last 2004.

In fact,
I consider that hymn a "Chinese Marseillaise", and I even think that the 1978 version would be re-adapted as the second stanza of the hymn, not because it shows how the party continues to lead the Chinese people in its long march to victory, but of continuing Mao's legacy through his thought and even contribution in Chinese history. Just like the first part wherein it shows how the Chinese stood to fight, the second shows how the Chinese continue its struggle.


(Comparing Ambeth Ocampo and Manuel Quezon III)

While reading every issue of the Inquirer both hard and softcopy (courtesy of, I read some of articles made by Manuel Quezon III and Ambeth Ocampo. Both of them are good writers, whose expertise is more into history-that makes the write-up long and studded with historical facts, of information coming from age-old sources and modern-day accounts.

Despite similar “inclinations” and “likes”, they have different ideas and influences. Quezon is more of a liberal conservative approach, and even criticizing some progressive personalities (especially activists) and politicians, especially in this coming elections [1] while Ambeth Ocampo focused much in historical affairs, just like his obsession with Rizaliana [2] and other history related events unknown to textbooks. [3]

And as I expect, Ocampo perhaps tackle about typhoons, again in a historical-like approach using Blair and Robertson index (a 55-volume compilation of historical documents edited by Emma Helen Blair and James Alexander Robertson) just to have a reference about “meteorology and meteorological phenomena.” and according to him:

“Naturally there is mention of weather as observed by the Spanish Jesuits who set up the world famous Manila Observatory in the Walled City in 1865 just to compile and analyze typhoon and earthquake data.” [4]

How about the liberal-conservative Quezon?
He tacked much about elections, then putting some historical twists as part of comparing the present to the past, as well as of Political parties preparing most of thetime filling the posts and strategies in order to win [4] just like the announcement of Estrada-Binay tandem last Wednesday.

Somehow these two columnists tried much in emphasizing past events and comparing it to present situations around the country. And just like Ocampo’s write-up on typhoons (again, with historical basis), Quezon tackled the recent floods due to typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng, and even compared it to the floods of 1943. Well… in this typhoon prone area, he’ll simply say it and recall the past events! He even put some visuals as evidence (not posted in Inquirer, but in his blog rather) [5].

How about in politics?
I seldom see Ocampo’s write-ups and commentaries tackling about politics unlike Quezon. But despite of that, he is more into socio-economic affairs just like his write-up about globalization, and he even said that:
“History becomes relevant to our time when we realize that globalization is not new. We had it in the Galleon Trade between Mexico and the Philippines four centuries ago.”[6]
And I consider that his storytelling approach seemed good. Different from Quezon and his purely commentary approach, and purports with facts being stated (or in his blog, visuals and other further information not being mentioned in his Inquirer column.)

Quezon’s approach in politics seemed continuous. And expecting that he’ll continuously tackle politicians and their actions and comparing it to the past-related events. Just like this write-up regarding political conventions and it says:
“The closing acts of the traditional conventions took place in 1965, when the Nacionalista Party convention went to Ferdinand Marcos due to Imelda Marcos’ charm offensive to court the support of the Lopez bloc, and because Emmanuel Pelaez refused to bribe his way to victory, and in 1969, when there were allegations that the Liberals chose Sergio Osmeña Jr. as their candidate because Diosdado Macapagal wanted a candidate who’d lose (so he could make a comeback), and supposedly because of the “Marcos Liberals,” who maneuvered to select the weakest possible candidate versus the incumbent president.
Having subverted the integrity, such as it was, of the two leading parties, Marcos then devoted himself to systematically destroying them during martial law. He tried to restore the pre-war one-party system, and much as we have a theoretical multi-party system, his legacy continues, except that the shelf life of every administration party is only as long as the term of the incumbent who created it.”[7]

I simply expect that, since he tried to compare the recent events with the ones in the past that seemed to be similar, of TRAPOs (Traditional Politicans), of their tactics, of scandals, and of attempts.

I, being focused in the computer screen and reading some write-ups, tried much in reading posts made by these two men. And despite tackling with an historical approach, what I expect was and is simple: “one is a storyteller; the other is a politically inclined analyst.”








Wednesday, October 21, 2009


By Katleah Iskre Ulrike

Many of students studying are trying to be enlightened both by practise and by theory. And most of them are trying hard to cope with the ideas coming not just from the four corners of the classroom but of course, from the realities happened around the community. We may think that kind of student is a progressive one, trying to use education not as a total solution but as a contributing factor in solving problems. However, Not all students are realist and progressive. Since most of the studentry are simply focused much on the "references", of "boxed-up ideas", and even the "vices" in which likely for them to be corrupted rather than enlightened due to lack of real ideas and minimal approach to information. Otherwise they become too apolitical and even asocietal towards the society itself, not caring the society and instead advocating much of the trendish parts what the gentry wanted for them; like forcing them to advocate "reckless individualism", "bogus charity", of "illiberal liberalism" instead of "collective action", of "serving one's people", and of "guided liberalism."

But then,
Some students, driven by changes every year, may end up in various ideas. Some may ought to be progressive, to be moderate, to be reactionary, or remain apolitical and asocietal due to what they've seen in every event. Rallies perhaps may called them as eyesore to the streets while others call it as agitation and propaganda based on realities, Leaflets are often called as propaganda pieces or lies while others seriously tend to read it and look further in some of its sources. But the rest? Simply not caring it, and instead contenting in their contradicting dreams and vices in life.

But not all things are not just end up in a petition or in the rally, as most students simply use the electoral process as a means of change in the student council seat. I notice that for now some students simply vote groups who are "pro-student", who are using much of their popularity, scholarship than of realistic ideas which include exposing truth; as well as of having a series of short-term programs that we may call as bread and circuses to the studentry.

They may deserve to win, since most of these "pro-student" ones are using their popularity than idea most of the time, not noticing that working in the council is a serious job, especially when it comes to defending student's rights, of accelerating student welfare, as well as of making the studentry and the institution itself closer to the people. But instead? They are just mere displays, of using their position as a requirement for their jobs, of being mouthpieces of the bureaucrat administrators, and even accepting mere compromises like increasing tuition and other redundant fees for the sake of having money for themselves.
For sure some students may have experience this kind of thing made by the council, of looking what's behind than contenting at the front. As well as thinking that they simply doing somewhat contrary to their plans as elected officers of the council. Worst is that some may tried much in saying their grievances to them, but they end up none.

Are all the students simply became blind, deaf and mute as they enjoy the bread and circuses made by these people? Of thinking of the entire studentry as part of the school and not as a member of a greater society? Or are they affirming that they separate themselves for goddamn sake?
Quite sad isn't it? But it makes us agitate and again yearning for change! I myself may recommend not just content in the electoral process as a means of change, why not start reading Mao's work?:


Based in a big character poster calling the people to expose the rotten core and calling for its immediate destruction, for sure the studentry may started to create not just widespread protests, but to create widespread criticism directly against the ones who are creating such actions and ideas contrary to the dreams of the studentry! How come the council members doing most of the time acting as if as gentleman's club members than as a collective planners? Or even how come after the election the office wherein they are planning remained closed? Well... they may be good in "studies" but not in "service", they may be good in "theory" but not in "practise", but then-they are still good as sitting ducks not as barking and biting dogs! Too bad for them, for what they made is too late.

Sunday, October 18, 2009



Flag of the Philippines with the Red on top to signify war,
but it may reinterpret again as a symbol of anti-imperialist struggle

We use to look at the TV set or in every part of our community a flag famous for its struggle against the Spaniards and the Americans, as well as a badge of patriotism inspired by every people involved in its fight.

Not all things within that flag was and is well discussed. To others, it was a flag associated with freemasonry (like Andres Bonifacio and Emilio Aguinaldo) since it's design and symbol are well connected to the Jacobin ideals of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity while some said that was connected much to the geography, especially the sun and stars wherein aligned with the provinces and other places affected by colonial oppression and native struggles against the oppressor; white, blue and red may signifies cleanliness, blood and justice or even resembles a debt of honour to the almighty United States since Aguinaldo at first supported them during the Spanish-American war, not knowing its imperialistic plans towards the nation at that time.

But despite different interpretations, the Philippine flag resembles the ideals of patriotism and of independence made by the Filipino people alongside the red flag as the banner of the revolution. Most people perhaps may say that the flag symbolizes blood and honour and at the same time land and liberty due to the revolutionary ideals of the people at that time, and not of a "for sake" stance of adding color to the flag just to show recognition as a movement. The flag somehow also shows the methaphysical side wherein it is somewhat inspired by the anting-antings and agimats worn by the Katipuneros to ward off bullets. And the stars forming the triangle in the flag may also symbolizes or substitutes the KKK (just like the stamp used by the first republic) while the sun pertains to liberty (like the original flag); and the colors may resemble martyrdom in the land (Red) and seas, skies (Blue) covering the entire nation then in revolt.

Stamp of Aguinaldo's Philippine Republic,
wherein the KKK was still featured

In addition to that,
The flag, especially with a revolutionary past, may have been a part of the 20th century struggles in Asia, or perhaps an inspiration; especially like the colors Red and Blue or even the yellow star like the flag of the Vietcong during the war in Vietnam, wherein it shows a bit similarity with our flag, but with the red on top, with a different interpretation signifying the unity of the Red north and the Blue south under patriotism, democracy and socialism. And perhaps some Filipinos may disagree upon what I have said despite seeing this flag and shows how similar it was.

Flag of the former Republic of South Vietnam,
known as the Vietcong flag

But then, Despite all events throughout the years, people may have tried much in seeking the anti-imperialist interpretation of the flag, not just the mere patriotic ones as what bourgeois-liberals may have said, but of the ones interpreted by people whose love of country includes love of people and faithfully serving them; like the Cuban flag whose roots were coming from anti-imperialist and popular-patriotic heroes like Marti-who even spoke a warning against America and its attempt to use Cuba after being liberated from Spain! But despite of that, Marti's influence were mostly of a liberal type, but then, he influenced every patriot including socialists like Commandante y Jefe Fidel; same as here like don Belong de los Reyes and Don Crisanto Evangelista. They are both Filipino revolutionaries, but they also became Marxists, or even Andres Bonifacio whose readings may include mob violence aside from Jacobin-Liberal inclined writings.

For me,
These shows that despite different interpretations especially of banners with similarities, I think that the Philippine experience may have influenced other struggles in Asia, primarily in the southeast. From the day Sun Yat-Sen supported Ponce, of Laurel tried to join the Indonesian freedom fighters to a float featuring a Viet-Cong warrior during the lantern parade in UP Diliman, all of these shows that how progressive leaning and freedom loving Filipinos are willing to support liberation struggles and even socialism, all despite countless oppression made by domestic and foreign enemies and slanderers of the people.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Sunday, October 11, 2009



Years after I created my work about subcultural and cultural struggles, it seems that the ideas being written are likely to be considered and adjusted out of a certain condition. Perhaps, these are out of certain talks to some people coming from other genres, and despite any "drifts" likely to get erupt, I felt somewhat a sense of consideration, of accepting them and joining in "forging" to create a new culture.

In fact,
My writeup, that shows conflict between "Mainstream" and "Alternative" (underground) scenes, as well as against "For sake" ideas are likely to stop as every genre, especially being forged by realism and of trying to resist the flow, are likely to be united despite diversity in order to destroy the ones who pushed every people into the enslaving flow, or rather say "of joining into the flow" not knowing where it will stop, as well as to create a new culture from the ruins and ashes of the culture where "total cooptaton" and "total submission" involved.

As what former U.P. President Salvador Lopez hath said: "The word has soul as well as body", cultures are intended to have a real purpose in life. Especially in helping the people building a revolutionary community, a university of life that sprung from the minds of an emancipated being, and not of "dead words, dead sounds, and little or no sense at all."

I remember when I talked with my friend, former L.F.S (League of Filipino Students) member Joel Garduce, he said that "cultures must be deeply rooted and molded for people's aspirations," and thus, I may say that his idea regarding an "organic" culture may include subcultures that resisted the mainstream scene and integrating instead to a greater culture of the people, and be forged, molded with people's ideas and aspirations and not those who are creating "for a sake." of boxed up ideas coming from the enslaving mainstream scene.

Let us say that these genres, are created with the goal of showing their artistic spirit in a productive manner; a part of a culture in which man intended to preserve & to cherish, but some people, whose goal is to accumulate profit, tend to enslave every culture, genre & use as a tool of exploitation. And thus, the ones who resist are those who tend their artistic ideas & tendencies as a cultural tool of resistance & struggle whilst those who join into the flow are the ones who contribute in enslaving people's minds, of corrupting culture and of stereotyping out of it.

Let's just say that I am deeply influenced by proletarian mass struggles as well as the working class-ness of their cultures, same as the genres involved; especially through their music and art. Perhaps, let's take "Punk" and "Hiphop" for example.

We see these two genres as "overused", "stereotyped", or in case of gangsta (also a part of hiphop) "lumpenproletarian" in nature due to its music and lifestyle, particularly in fashion. Back then these two genres are tools of revolutionary struggle against the dreaded system and exploitation. From the songs of Dead Kennedys, of Crass, to Tupac Shakur and Public Enemy, they spoke of life and on how to fight within it, even to the point of advocating revolution. But now, we see of anything "Pop-fied", of becoming stereotypically bourgeois than becoming totally worker-based in its idea and appearance. Gangsta rap, fueled by mainstream interests and of for sake ideas overglorifies bourgeois culture and of lumpenproletarian lifestyles that corrupts the genre or even Hiphop culture itself. Same as those who stereotypically carrying guitars and creating songs "for sake". Perhaps, few persons, groups tend to resist and remain "working-class" than be corrupted by the flow, becoming blind in following their roots, and contenting in their orgiastic lifestyle.

That would be also possible to other genres affected by the sugar-coated promises of mainstream scene. Since mainstream culture tends to dominate much, supported by capitalistic interests and power from corrupted interests within the dreaded system. That scene manipulates anything, negating much of the genre as possible.

But then,
As time changes, cultures may diversify but the message may likely to remain or change depending on the idea given or the situation related. Hiphop for example, diverses into other sub-categories of its won kind as time changes, same as ideas regarding the trend. And that culture, as it diversifies, affects the real purpose. Like "calling for a struggle", it becomes a mere word since that culture integrate much into the mainstream scene, of commercialism, or rather say of getting used by the reaction! And as for Hiphop, it becomes too lumpen than revolutionary in stating anything according to their lyrics written; worst in interpreting ideas being said, becoming stereotypically "for sake of something". They may've listened Tupac, but they didn't know what Tupac says. Same as in other subgenres-cultures wherein music and theatre is their main forte.

Well, in general,
These problems regarding the state of culture grows worse. Sorry if I say something that may consider against some people who are thinking of "for sake", since their problem is that, they are looking for money by using their idea much, than of propagating their idea, of calling for struggle, and of life; Tupac may've spoken of emancipation of the black from the ghetto, comparing to Soulja boy whose advocacy is related to the asses of his "hoes". These two are hiphoppers, but they contradict much of their content, worst is that most listeners listen and sing, but they didn't know what content is better for them. Same as in other means like painting or plastic arts, even theatre and cinema, wherein some tend to show something, or perhaps show nothing since they are doing it "for sake", that in fact, doing it just to accumulate more profit by using their useful-useless talent.

For sure many of us see, hear, speak out of these things around us courtesy of the "for sake" mainstream scene since it is "cheaper". But then, we didn't look at the content inside every writeup, painting, movie and even the song being played since they created it "for sake", culture nowadays are propagating much of these with minimal influences from their supposed "roots", using it just to accumulate profit and fans most of the time, or I should say participating in creating boxed-up mindsets and obliging people to join in the flow. But despite of these, few or some will resist their ideas and instead calling for its immediate destruction-of destroying the "for sake" mainstream scene alongside the destruction of capitalism!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Academic freedom? Or Corporate responsibility?

Academic freedom? Or Corporate responsibility?
by Lualhati Madlangawa-Guerrero

From the days I kept on studying in school, I simply experience more of restriction of idea and of legally motivated movement than of enjoying friends and of accumulating knowledge. This problem somehow I think, seemed a part of a greater plan in a guise of "striving for academic excellence"- simply by blocking away academic freedom and progressive instruction in every academic institution, especially if it is owned by a corporate giant.

In fact,
Upon writing this, I read a post in Multiply regarding the criticism of students protesting against the proposal on banning long haired men in that school. The work seemed well, readable and more of an intellectual, however that person simply defends the corporation than the educational institution, simply by saying some words coming from the student manual. Well... that student manual was and is a tool of restrictions made by the administrators to control student's idea and of legally motivated movement, of thinking subversive as bad-contrary to the said "Academic freedom" and "progressive instruction" in that said institution. How come that person is defending the administrator's than of the student's interests?

That person, in defending, may say this academic circular as part of her defence:
Moreover, according to the Academic Circular No. 1, Revised 2005 Section 4, Paragraph 5, Male students are not allowed to wear earrings, ball caps and to sport colored or loose longhairs (Long hair should be pony-tailed and well groomed). This is the policy of the University crafted by the Administration and of course they will not create another policy that would contradict the one existing.
Okay, fine. But how come the administrators are proposing a policy against long haired male persons despite that policy? Only to end up trashed out due to opposition made by males who also sport long hairs? That person defending and saying that proposed policy is a mere "suggestion?" To them it is nothing, but to others it is a serious matter to oppose before it pass through and accepted by these puppets.

For me, I simply disagree with that academic circular, especially of not allowing to wear headgear and to sport colored hair? Why? Just because to show "Manliness" and "decency?" There's nothing wrong in going to campus wearing a cap and wandering around, but not inside the classroom especially during classes. And how about sporting long hair or colored hair? There's nothing wrong with that, especially that's his will to have so, and he even trying himself to look decent despite having a long or a colored hair. I also even think that if a member of a Sikh minority was studying there, will he pass the ordeal of having a short hair? Of not wearing a turban? School policies may disagree with the Sikh religious dogma of having uncut hair and of turbans too!

Secondly, I disagree the manual for saying this:
“Do not conduct/or join rallies, illegal assemblies and similar acts that disrupt academic functions.”
These words seemed conflicting with the ideals concerning academic and other basic freedoms man have, that includes the school as long as it has a reason and a basis in conducting a legally motivated demonstration. Another is that, that person who was looking from the door and criticizing the protesters outside the campus seemed too annoying and even saying "not to conduct rallies that disrupt academic institutions," Is she or the university include outside the campus in saying it? And how come the university was also setting a "legal hour" to conduct an activity from 12:30 to 1:00? Legal hours may include these demonstrations, especially coming from a legally recognized progressive organization.

If Foucault (RIP) lives, he would even call that institution as a "prison", and that institution is also an example of a one part of a vast network, including schools, military institutions, hospitals, and factories, which build a panoptic society for its members. This system creates “…disciplinary careers…” (Discipline and Punish, p. 300) for those locked within its corridors. It is operated under the scientific authority of medicine, psychology and criminology. As well as, it operates according to principles which ensure that it “…cannot fail to produce delinquents.” (Discipline and Punish, p. 266) Delinquency, indeed, is produced when social petty crime (such as taking wood in the lord's lands) is no longer tolerated, creating a class of specialized "delinquents" which acts as the police's proxy in surveillance of society.

Back to the topic,
The example that I have stated, somehow shows how a privately owned institution is seemly bipolar, of being an educational institution and of a corporation, of being adhere to academic freedom and of being committed to corporate social responsibility, these are quite opposing especially in ideas related to these. Just like the earlier protests against the proposed "long hair policy", and of a decree "not conducting rallies and other progressive but legally motivated events", it diminishes academic freedom and even "progressive instruction" to mere words, and also to expand further the administrator's "corporate-related ideas" that may also curb the ideas of a youth into a mere educated person motivated by profit, of becoming a peon of the ruling gentry in a backward, corrupted system.

In addition to that,
Having a commericalized, colonialized, fascist type of education, motivated and advocated by corporate minded interests tries to turn youth into peons. According to the first and second writeups I have made, it even shows how every progressive leaning youth is trying to preserve its freedoms and privileges despite the administration's attempt to curtail. The problem of every corporate minded owner of an educational institution tends to ailienate education, and even youth from the real face of the society, and even tends to "unite" education with profit in a guise of development, profit through increase in exorbitant fees and even tries to minimize student movement through creating its set of rules that contradicts academic freedom and progressive instruction.

How worrying and even agitating, especially that a student or a teacher, may say to someone that "You are studying in a private school, you must be thankful that you study so don't argue" or "You need to study your lessons, it is a key for the future". But still, you cannot underestimate the growing numbers of angry students who are trying to express their ideas, their reasons, their aspirations contrary to the ideas of the school, whether it is state or private! And not all things arguable can be pass through parliamentary procedure, especially if around is more of a reaction than of progress- that is the real way of a student, for anything around is part of a greater struggle man must pass.