Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Day 31: Upon seeing the sign: No Purpose. No Entry.

What shall I say 
when the gatekeeper asks
to account 
for my presence?
Should  I say I came to 
serve or be served
or observe
the state of things
of confusing service and 
 When you travel this far
only to find you've
forgotten your purpose
or you no longer want it,
will it make sense to return
or proceed;
and this guard--
what standard does he keep
to say a purpose is valid,
will he accept silence?
Surely, there is joy
even for a fleeting second
to stay at the door,
between aiming and aimless.


Monday, January 30, 2017

Day 30: All you ever wanted

When you wake up in the morning
And your dick won’t rise with you
And your maid is late with your coffee
and viagra
and this maid calls your driver
who is late because he went to a wake
of the dead and the living who wanted your photo a-feastin’ and your fly open
and your toes showin’ and you
curse him for wakin’ later than his
bossin’ and you read the papers
and you notice they missed the quota
and the countdown is off by a thousand and they talk about the helicopter and the man who jumped off from it and landed on the crocodiles and they have not forgotten but it has not been proven
And you hear Obama fucking intellectual, writing books, teaching law, editing a law journal, and he became President, what does he know about power when he hasn’t shot a man, when he hasn’t fucked a whore, when he gets angry in a gray suit, well-pressed and bloodless? Unlike the police with the million dollar home who robs a Korean, and then chokes him and burns him and flushes his ashes off the toilet while his boss sings a rock song in a concert of hippies who worship the Pope who caused the traffic and caused you to be late for a date
with a whore, and this drug-addict lover, de Lima, whose voice reminds you of your teacher who almost flunked you in math which has no use but for counting dead bodies that smell of gun powder that gives you the high like when you’re mad 
so you decide to go on air and call the press and talk about the bullshit you go through each day 
when all you ever wanted is an angry fix. 
Yes, all you ever wanted is an angry fix.
‘tang-ina! ‘tang-ama! ‘tangnyolahat!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Day 29: Conversation with Chuang Tzu

What business is there
in being useless,
to plant a tree in the 
middle of nowhere,
so it will not be disturbed,
when surely the tree
serves some purpose
like holding the soil in a flood
that will inundate the village
or provide a shade for the birds,
a home for the squirrels?
Dear Master,
who said the useless is
never disturbed,
perhaps it is better to say
it is futile to wish to be inutile
prepare to be disturbed
for we are all designed
to be of use if not to us
but to others.
Dear Master replied,
”Who said we wish not to be disturbed?
What we wish is to free ourselves
of use so we can
learn from them who use us.
When we cease to be 
what others need of us
we become that 
tree before it grows up.”

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Day 28: Song for the Accused

The Supreme Court missed it 
as they sometimes do
great learned men of the race
put a man to death and
misread the law.
T'was April 1974, in 
Pola Mindoro Oriental
Manuel Morales had carnal knowledge 
with his daughter  Maria, 
young lady of 14.
Incestuous rape we call it now --
a plague humanity beset for centuries hence
And it happened repeatedly so
poor child,  Maria, 
I wished he set her free.
But God was silent all those months 
and on December of that year,
born to Maria one evening at 7
a bright baby named Mary,
she was crying and healthy
but Manuel had thoughts 
and poor baby he took and 
buried on the ground
15 feet away from 
where she was born.
Yet, God had eyes who knew
and decreed that no crime though hidden 
would not be found
for one Delfin Dris and the fiery Dr. Alamar
unearthed the remains of little Mary.
Manuel Morales was caught and jailed 
He confessed to the killing
and related his deed.
It was shame he said 
that caused him to do it,
the proof -- his granchild he killed.
He confessed to the police.
He confessed to the court.
He was ready to embrace his fate.
The court sentenced him to death
and the Supreme Court reviewed
if the law was applied.
The Revised Penal Code it said,
the great Court quoted,
Nocturnity would aggravate
the death penalty -- we cannot avoid.
but one J. Abad Santos dissented
How can it aggravate when it was not intended?
Poor baby was born at 7 already in the evening
Nocturnity was not planned but was a given
the punishment should be reduced
to imprisonment for life.
But the Court of sage chose not to hear 
the lone dissenter's voice
perversity must not escape, it said 
and to the death Manuel Morales went.
And now, forty years hence
we examine the mistake
our dearest Court made
J. Abad Santos, God bless him,
was right. In crimes it is so
one is punished for intent
and not for an event 
as common as night. 
Morales is dead, but he could have lived 
to contemplate and suffer for his fault
he might have reformed and lived a pious life
as he had shown when he confessed
He might have been forgiven and 
lived a wondrous life, yet it is
over now and it is done.
an evil deed and big mistake 
forever etched.
So, here I argue against death,
how many more mistakes will we make?
how many more to suffer his fate.
Someday it might be you, your friend, or family.
Pray it never happens to anyone you love --
a hopeless fate 
remorse too late.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Day 27: Meatless

They say you become the
animal you like to eat.
I’m a pig then
nosing around the pen
happy to lie in the mud or wherever
always waiting for dinner
and the next meal after that
and the one after.
And you,
a chicken, 
forever pecking on the ground
looking for little things like worms
in your food, but if you’re a chicken,
the worm is your food, which
you hate like lizards.
And even if you’re just sitting there
you’re actually doing something
like guarding the chicks
or hatching eggs.
It seemed improbable 
that we’d end up together,
the slouch and the worker.
So, we decided to get married
and now we’re vegetarians,

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Day 26: Names

You've understood something 
if you’ve learned its name.

Like when a new species of birds is discovered 
and it is called
Rudder's Forest Robin

Some rare pain in your heart,
Brugada Syndrome

Crazy roommate,

Your dark past,
Incestuous rape

Caring but silent god,

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Day 25: Letter to 70 year old self

You could have been President 
like you once dreamed 
until you read Nietzsche and 
decided metaphysics is more exciting 
than feeding the greed 
of those who profess 
they want to serve.
The philosopher king 
would have to win the election 
without joining it
or wanting to
such queerness of fate
should match 
Plato’s design that the 
ordinary ones wouldn't understand.
But cheers to you who kept the faith
to keep the path that Frost described
to find enjoyment in the rain,
drink in measured cups,
fast in large dinners, 
feast when there is little
To sing the forgotten song 
and dance for dancing’s sake 
To tell the story no one
wants to hear
To think and unthink at a finger snap
To love with a love, as Poe described,
That is more than love, 
and love some more.
To stay when there is hope
To pray when there is none
As the universe expands,
to be its little child.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Day 24: Boazanian Dreams

I don’t remember Voltes V
ever having trouble with it.
A beast fighter attacks 
and they begin the dance — 
the machine hero takes some beating
a couple of blows,
it is wrestled to the ground,
a chain runs a current
gets the team in pain,
But the earth defender recovers,
chain knuckles, Voltes Bazooka,
the Ultra Electro Magnetic Top is unleashed 
taking from the skills of Mark Gordon,
the orphan cowboy with the obscure past,
the snake like belt turns 
into a yo-yo string and a whip 
with spinning tops that 
explode on impact.
It never fails
this zippy gadget
doesn't stop 
the way a cellphone drops a connection 
or an ATM goes offline
and debits your money
and eats your card,
or the LRT freezes on track
or your car gets a flat tire.
And though the Voltes V story 
fails not to inspire 
it's never the same
when you gear up for work
and a thing conks out
in a third world kind of way
and you lose or 
(almost) die.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Day 23: The Guard

At the port of Verde 
the quiet isle between 
Batangas and Mindoro
stands an abandoned resort,
Dos Palmas, they used to call it, 
the same one
which lost Martin Burnham
in Honda Bay, Palawan.
The lobby chairs are empty
the rooms still kept,
sheets, dusty;
spoons and glasses complete —
No one there
but a guard on duty.

One morning I came by boat,
a client wanted to see
how much the resort would fetch;
the pictures showed it was,
a place of rest, serenity. I walked around the island and met him
who stood on the edge of nowhere
No one but the sand and sea
No boss to report to
No thieves to deter
No kidnappers to fight
There was no one to kidnap
But the turtles on the beach.
A tough job it was to be vigilant
Like Beckett’s play it seemed 
Godot never came to him who waited.
Jester was I and called him 
expecting him relaxed and cheating
Soldier, are your shoes shiny?”
And lo! On his boots I saw the
sun winking, and said he —


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Day 22: My Wife vs. The iPhone

She threatened to throw it to the trash
it refused to turn on, having been 
repeatedly from high places like my 
of a rock that wouldn’t budge to tell 
is not a problem of force but of
if she’s not keen on reading the manual
as well listen and accept there is 
on my mind but her struggles, and the 
I spend on duties are things to 
the open space of being like the 
when it chokes because it's sending 
and many other things
in this fight against the iPhone,  
are rooting for no one else but 

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Day 21: Tatay's Lesson

He asked me one morning 
as I rushed a paper for class
why I haven’t learned to type,
growing up in his shop 
with typewriters that arrived
missing letters, rigid strokes, 
that needed fixing
in a corner of his house in Pola, 
a town of bankers, lawyers, and clerks
who begged their babies 
jumped the line
for theirs were texts that needed to be set, 
filed in court, or sent far away.
He counted 
how many learned
from his machines
in the afternoons
learning rtyu’s to fghj’s
soon after they’re chasing the quick brown fox, 
the rhythm of clickety clacks and bings 
replacing the stoccatos in which a beginner starts,
That was thirty years ago
and Tatay left;
how would it fascinate him to know 
Liquid Paper is gone
with auto-correct.
Yet on a Macbook,
God bless his soul, I worry 
about letters on the
screen neat and clean, and
regret it might be late
to learn where the “z” is
without looking
a written word
on a moment’s thought
just by touching.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Day 20: Riddles for the 21st Century

1. Twelve numbers 
you need to handle me or
you know not what I will be
for when I have flown and you didn’t see, you regret it and 
you miss me.

2. What it is the end 
of all that begins,
and begins at the very end,
like a river with no sea,
the end that never ends?

3. “You say potato and I say potatoh
you say tomato and I say tomatoh
potato, potatoh, tomato, tomatoh
Let’s call the whole thing off.”

1. Time 2. Death 3. Sec. Andanar and the Press, or Pres. Duterte and Sec. Yasay

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Day 19: Wika nga ni Neruda

(Halaw at salin mula sa Soneto XVII)

Di kita mahal gaya ng rosas na asin, topasyo, o hilera ng klabeles na nagsasaboy ng silab:
Mahal kita tulad ng pagtangi sa mga bagay na madilim,
palihim, sa pagitan ng anino at diwa.

Mahal kita parang halamang hindi bumubukadkad at bitbit ang liwanag ng bulaklak, kipkip, sa sarili lamang,
at salamat sa iyong pag-ibig
mula sa lupa ay nabuhay sa aking katawan sa lilim ang
masinsing bango ng rosas.

Mahal kita ng hindi alam kung paano, kailan, at saan
Mahal kita ng tuluyan, walang ligalig at yabang
Mahal kita pagkat hindi ko alam kung anong paraan ka pa mahalin

kundi ganito, walang ikaw o ako 
sa digkit ang iyong kamay sa aking dibdib ay akin
sa digkit ang iyong mata ay pikit sabay ng aking pangarap.

Day 18: To Throw

off a troll, 
start with a big word 
like “supine,”
he’ll be wondering 
how it’s pronounced, 
and, too lazy to lift
his fingers and Google 
how to say it, he won't 
read any further, 
not knowing in English it means
— the acceptance
of an immoral situation 
due to selfishness or 
like when people are killed openly on the streets by state agents and 
no one protests because only drug addicts get killed and bystanders are mere collateral damage.
Also means 
— the position of body lying down and the face is looking upwards like when the drugs addicts are killed and they are made to lie facing the sky as the policemen put a gun on their hands to make it appear the corpses were involved in a shoot-out.
Sa Tagalog, “supin” syort por
sumisipsip na Pilipino kaya
kahit patayan ng patayan 
walang nagrereklamo kasi hapi-hapi tayo.
Supin supine in the face of murder.
And he, friendly neighborhood troll,
might even  click “like" and "share” 
if you end with
 👊 👊👊👊!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Day 17: Subic Rhapsody

You can tell
in this January afternoon
the gods 
have blessed us 
the way the coconut leaves sway 
to the direction of the sea
the chill swirling around the nape
whisking salt in the air
as the smoke scatters 
in this bayside bar;
we could have been 
in an air-conditioned room
on the 52nd floor in BGC,
away from the elements,
pampered by modern man’s facilities. 
Yet time and space have crossed 
and willed us to be here
as the sun descends
the wind upon our faces.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Day 16: That Lecaroz Painting

of Francis M.
was done in half a day,
one June 12 afternoon,
when boredom struck
and we had money to burn
on canvas, paint, and beer,
with splashes and shades
of the Republic's flag
Kaleidoscope World repeatedly 
played "Every color every hue is
represented by me and you."
I only wanted to see her work
half-expecting she'll get it; half she won't.
It mattered not so long as the barbeque 
came out tender and flavorful.
But she painted
like a mad woman, 
twisting and turning,
the brush landing on the canvas
followed no patterns 
but those in her mind.
She was on his eyes when she paused,
changing brushes as she worked,
her hand barely moving in its stance.
I left to check the grill and let her be.
Then she hanged it on the wall for it was done
And I, 
whelmed by what transpired, 
genius that was once cloaked 
has been found.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Day 15: To Bato's Cop

How many criminals has incoming Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa killed? Dela Rosa seemed stumped by the question during a radio DZMM interview Friday, saying only his priest knows the answer… He also revealed that he sometimes weeps in church when he is asking for forgiveness from God. "I am no cold-blooded killer," he said.” http://news.abs-cbn.com/nation/06/10/16/bato-i-am-no-cold-blooded-killer

Who doesn’t need
poetry under a crescent moon
on a white-noised night,
and urine-stenched air,
to kill and put a gun on a 
dead man’s hand
before the radiomen
get to the bloodied street?
You have been assured,
a price for every head
and pardon, if you make a mistake.
You never had it so good in your prosaic world.
It's hard to live you say
when people are  rollicking in 
kaleidoscope dreaminess 
the way that grass
fools the mind of the 
lightness of living
when there is work to do
like build roads and
people do their tripping.
It is your job, in fact, 
to strike out an item
from a list
the way a butcher knocks off a
cut from the carcass of a hog
on a manifest.
Please take a second
to see that the words on the list
are not ribs, hocks, or tails,
but somebody’s name 
who might have been your dad 
or wife from another life,
a fellow human with a face. 
Yet, counter-factuals, you say, 
are irrelevant to your work.
It is easier for a man like you,
bemedalled soldier of the state,
to go home to your real wife, 
tell her how you survived the shoot out with the man, 
who came like the pied piper to take 
people's kids away, he with the evil laugh,
breathing fire as he struck, he was dead
before he could shoot -- 
a little spin here and there 
and you, 
with the heart of a rock,
declare shouldn't we be happy to be alive?
Who doesn't need poetry?

Friday, January 13, 2017

Day 13: Notes on the Cross-Examination of Pilate

How long were you the 
ruler of Judea?
And isn’t it so that your mandate is to 
keep the ruled at peace,
make things predictable —
food for the hungry,
work for the unoccupied,
penalty for the wicked?
And this man who spoke about the 
law of loving God above all
and loving others as one loves oneself,  
what balance did he tilt 
to merit the punishment that you meted?
He did not incite any one against Rome, you will agree? 
Or rally Galilee to secede?
When he spoke, in fact,
of giving to Ceasar what is Ceasar's, 
or loving one’s enemy, he might have implored the province to embrace your dominion — 
weren’t you, after all, the enemy?
The truth, Mr. Pilate, is that you are a coward, correct? 
You stand for nothing but the erection in your loins, 
the food of your feasts, 
the palace where you sleep, and 
the servants you order around?
And violence you can take,  
as long it’s not you they attack? 
Better he than you, 
a footnote to the bankruptcy  of your politics, 
where you trade the easy for the just and 
deny what is due?
You’re an ordinary man in an extraordinary time? 
You know history would not be kind, 
Answer me yes or no — 
You were oblivious  of your 
chance to prove 
the prophecy was wrong —
That man is rational
That man is free
That by doing what is right, 
man could break 
from the empire of expediency?
There are many like you 
who lived and died,
with amoral hearts?
You are excused.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Day 12: To be

They said the dead can't write
And there is no internet in the afterlife
John Lennon's soul once complained to a medium
That the genius songwriter that he was in the yonder
was a goner, having left his guitars, pens, and paper
in the portals of heaven and hell.
Poor James Joyce, 
having written in the smithy of his soul 
the so-called uncreated conscience of his race,
cannot come back to revise what he wrote 
or unwrite what he has writ.
The old man is dead, 
mute as the marble on his grave.
So, this is my plan for life,
write, write, write, 
A Descartian variation 
I write therefore I am,
For there is an "I"
That writes 
still kicking and alive, 
a reason why living is 
better than dead.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Day 11: Rizal in his 40s

Rizal died when he was 35 and so that leaves middle-aged Rizal fans like me without a model on how to grow old gracefully. We know he lifted weights and left behind some cement dumbbells in his Dapitan home before that fateful trip to Cuba, which was turned back to Manila where he would eventually be executed. Yet, we can probably project how he would have been in his 40s. He was a sportsman and was into fencing in the days before basketball was invented. I have yet to see a picture of Rizal with a ball, albeit balls were probably around in his time. But the dumbbells are telling. If he were alive at his 40s, Rizal would have maintained his buff physique, probably bulging a bit in the belly, but physically active despite his intellectual pursuits. In his time with Los Indios Bravos in Spain, Rizal got drunk every now and then. We have that picture of Rizal in a restaurant about to throw an apple on Trinidad H. Pardo de Tavera who passed out because of drunkenness. I doubt it if Rizal would have kicked his drinking habit, but he lamented this propensity for revelry and hedonism among the Filipino expats in Spain who drove him to leave and carry on his cause back to the motherland. Without his friends, Rizal would have probably settled for a glass of wine every meal, if he could afford it, and avoided binge-drinking, because there was no one to get drunk with. Besides, Rizal would have been conscious of what his students in Talisay would think if they saw him in public drunk and wasted. Rizal would have been a healthy 40 year old then,  but the Spaniards and the pesky Katipunan members (who used his name as a password) would have given him hypertension.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Day 10: Prayer Poem

The strategic adversary is fascism... the fascism in us all, in our heads and in our everyday behavior, the fascism that causes us to love power, to desire the very thing that dominates and exploits us.

Michel Foucault

Your kingdom come,
but I’m sorry to rain on your party. 
I think we need new metaphors and rituals for accession to office. 
Your will be done, 
Yet, perhaps we should destroy the Palace 
and build it elsewhere 
on earth as in heaven?
Should we rebuild it on the same level as the ground?
Give us our bread (and butter)
Maybe rebuild it lower — 
to signify that assumption to office is not a booty,
a prize one rises to 
and seizes for one’s self
but a lowering of the self to service?
Forgive us who trespass
But we should have a ritual similar to the "washing of the feet" in the Christian bible
Or maybe a ritual as vulgar as the
Chinese bride whose breasts are mashed by guests for cash?
We forgive them who trespass against us too.
After all, submission to the people’s will is a tricky thing — the vilest and most ill-mannered collective unconscious on the planet 
and you, 
a puny creature with the huge ego to fill it.
Do not take us to test.
It is not easy to understand what is happening, 
you have been chosen to work on a task
and you’re throwing a party.

Deliver us from evil.

Monday, January 09, 2017

Day 9: Define "___tard"

1. the acceptance of the mephistophelian wager and surrender of mental faculties in the service of a maniacal politician pretending to be a god

2. thinking 'my master right or wrong' for lack of a better thing to do or a better way to make money to sustain  one's mendicancy or stupidity

3. mga taong pakamatay at nakalimot nang mag-isip para sa sarili nila at mahilig sumunod lang sa dikta ng mga naghahari-harian at diyos-diyosan


Sunday, January 08, 2017

Day 8. Sunday Morning


Nobody watches TV anymore. An old portrait of one's self  hangs on a wall. A box with pastel colors neatly laid out lies on the bed. The red door closes and opens; and the blue dumbbells roll to the sides near the wall. The road outside is quiet.  These are some of the things one observes inside the house when one is not in a hurry, some inconsequential facts and happenings with no purpose but to be there. But it affords the mind a glimpse of Descartes's insight about the one thing that cannot be doubted -- there is a self that thinks. There is a self that observes. There is a self. On a different day, some of these observations would still be the same and some would be different. But nobody would care because the events of the day take place outside the house and the mind is adrift somewhere already busy before things would happen. This leads to the question: what if there were no days like these and the mind is adrift always, busy, adding, subtracting, communicating out there with the world? Surely, the self would get lost, get scattered, and worn down, perhaps it won't even recognize itself. That self would find no home, even if that self has a mansion of a house. There is truth in the adage, remember to keep holy the Sabbath day.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

Day 7: Dreaded Things

10.Undercooked chicken, 
9. Running out of gas in traffic, 
8. The judge whose watch is ten minutes early, 
7. The check that is being sent but is never received, 
6. Eb on the guitar, D#m7 dim on the piano, 
5. The iPhone on 2% power, 
4. The wife when she's hungry, the wife when she's angry, 
3. The  7th floor courtroom and the elevator is down,
2. The 31st floor office and the elevator is down, 
1. The 12 midnight phone call, the 12 midnight meeting. 

"When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I'm feeling sad, I simply remember my" list of dreaded things, "and then I don't feel so bad."

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Day 6: Waiting

I'm a lawyer, but I spend more time waiting. That's not exactly how it's supposed to be, but apparently that's how it has been. The court sets a date and time for a hearing, and counsels put it on their calendars, and on the hearing date at the appropriate time, the court room is closed. So the counsels sit outside the courtroom in a suit or barong, perspiring from all the heat, and finding a way to pass the time. If it's a big case and the counsels prepared for hours, all the adrenaline rush would be dissipating with the ticking of the clock. If it were simple motion to be heard, the waiting is easier, but the pressure of the "to do" list back in the office would be gnawing at the lawyer's disposition. When I was younger, I used to carry a paperback novel to keep me amused, but John Grisham could only amuse me once, and I soon resolved that any Grisham book is not worth even my court waiting time. When internet phone browsing came of age, and blogs became popular, I enjoyed waiting more by going online as I wait for my cases to be called; but I soon got alarmed by the increase in my phone bill, so I decided to get a Sudoku puzzle book, which was a cheaper alternative. But Sudoku puzzles became boring as well, so I went back to reading. I had magazines, comics, recipe books, short stories, novels, and history books in my briefcase, my main arsenal to put to some use the time waiting, which could be for various reasons, legitimate or otherwise. I once complained about it to my boss who lectured me instead about time management and suggested I should do my board minutes while waiting in court, which was unrealistic,  considering board minutes were a serious matter and other lawyers could he peering at the company secrets discussed in board meetings. Lately,  I tried praying the rosary, listening to a playlist of all the Ave Maria versions in Spotify, and reading the daily gospel, but these activities take away my focus from the task at hand. So, I decided the best way to deal with waiting time is to wait -- pure thoughtless, unfeeling, and blank-staring at the empty chair of the judge. It's an exercise in patience and mindfulness. Sometimes the judge arrives, sometimes the judge doesn't, but I wait nonetheless. It is in one of these instances that it came to me, we should be thankful for these moments. Before Solomon, Cain just killed Abel.  To find poetry in the waiting is the inevitable life of the legal advocate.

Day 5: What this Duterte Apologist Didn't Get About the Law

This post is a reply to this article, which came out in the Inquirer today: http://opinion.inquirer.net/100563/lawyers-dont-get-duterte

Assuming I did not misread him, which is always a danger when reading the apologetics of the powers that be, what the author is saying is that Duterte's actions against the drug menace is compelled by necessity. And law has no bearing in that. And to the author, this is what lawyers do not get. 

Of course, I get it. When someone is shooting a drug addict in the head while the poor guy is hogtied, the man with the gun is not reciting some Latin phrase like "Dura lex sed lex." He's just shooting, probably enjoying it, and telling himself this is a necessity. 
Nonetheless, I think these are the things that this Duterte apologist and the rest of them do not get: 

1. Necessity is relative.

What is necessary to us might not be necessary to others. Even the degree of necessity is dependent on the subject and the object of necessity. In addition, necessity is also a function of time and space. So, nobody is absolutely right or absolutely wrong about the necessity of things. I'm sure Duterte's argument about the necessity of curbing the drug menace is compelling. But, it is not absolute. His own confession about his use of Fentanyl already cracks the argument about the evil of drugs. Hitler thought killing the Jews was a necessity. Marcos thought declaring martial law was a necessity. General Smith felt it was a necessity to create the harrowing wilderness in Samar and Leyte during the Filipino-American War. The "N" word is such a cliche.

2. Power is a mania.

People who rise to power are not in it purely for lofty intentions. Nobody becomes President, because he/she is in love with the Philippine Constitution. There is in each of us earthlings,  a will to power -- an impulse to subjugate others, an itch to be the alpha male or queen mother. Of course, education helps us to tame that mania. The monks make a vow of obedience. St. Therese the Little Flower proposed that we aim to be like a child. But not everyone is religious. And not everyone educated is aware of this will to power. Some even go to yogis to ask for a mantra, which can be prayed over and over to make the ambition become a reality. Some actually become presidents, aware  of this will to power, and they want more of it. Why this rage with the drug addicts? I can understand PNoy's rage with the Marcoses, albeit I'm not all for it. But Duterte's rage with the drug addicts? If this were a novel, Duterte's character would be criticized for not being round enough. There is no explanation why he has this rage with the drug addicts,  except that he is using it as a ruse for more power. Killing is the ultimate act of power. Some people are addicted to killing, because it is the act of ultimate power.  Nietzsche and Foucault -- they've written about this before. 

3. Due process  is an absolute.

If you look back at history, which is essentially a history of power, things only became humane when due process was recognized by the powers that be. When people were killed at the whim of a king or queen, it was savage. And we judge it as savage because we evaluate it with the value of "due process," which at its core is fairness, power that listens before it strikes, power that recognizes no absolutes, but the absolutes of fairness and frailty of the human capacity to know. For that reason, we have constituted ourselves into a nation. We put power at the service of law, so power and the mania that inflicts those who have it in our system, can be tamed and put into the rational service of every citizen.  Yet, this due process is not the ultimate. Our aim is justice. We have to get it right. The only way to get it right is not to use absolute force; we have to arm force with knowledge and insight, and there is no way we can get that if we shun law and due process. And all this raucous will pass, but our nation  will only be judged, now and forever, by our adherence to the value of due process. Did our State listen to the 6,000 before they were killed? 

Tell me I don't get it.