Saturday, 30 August 2014

"Of KOMPRE and of social media Trying become a protest subsititute"

"Of KOMPRE and of social media 
Trying become a protest subsititute"

"If there were 'fake reformists' President Aquino harangued and warned against, they're probably at the phony "Koalisyon Para sa Reporma" (Coalition for Reforms)."

These are the words expressed by former Ambassador and Arroyo apologetic Rigoberto Tiglao in his article about a pro-Aquino group launched on the day of August 25 anti-Pork Barrel demonstration. Known by its acronym KOMPRE, these pro-Government stooges trying to woo the so-called 'thinking class' especially those whom had felt the present administration's achievements and at the same time willing to offer ideas concerning socio-economic reforms and proposals for National development.

However, the group, in spite of wooing those whom able to think and show, seemed to be less of a militant and more of an apologetic in spite of its denials. They had used social media to rally these petit bourgeois professionals under their flag, much more that they want to appear greater than those whom had opposed the present administration especially after the issues that directly pointed towards the president and his clique, and not just the opposition whom directly implicated at the crime both had shared of.

But come to think of this, since they pressure people to support the administration in a guise of clamoring for reforms, how come they turned down direct action in favor of comfort such as through social media? Is social media, the so-called arm of the silent, apathetic majority be a protest substitute?

According to Leah Navarro, a once anti-Arroyo protester and self-proclaimed initiator of the 'Million People March', she thinks that Social Media made the silent maority informed, enlightened, aware in issues particularly those of Pork Barrel and Disbursement Acceleration Program. As she said:

"During the time of Gloria all of us are 'anti' because she couldn't hear us. Today it's good for we are being neard. Being 'anti' is not fashionable for it's nice to be 'proactive' citizens. For me, it's important to bring your pleas to the government in order to be heard."

But how? Through social media aside from mere lobbying from these so-called concerned groups yet fell into deaf ears of the system? The convenors, in contrast to those whom really oppose the system to the core are desperately trying to present themselves as progressives with the willingness to create alternatives to the growing revolutionary fervor. Of course, they would give paper reforms like any other groups trying to counter destabilization, only to found out that they are faux-progressive, or even Counterreactionary.
Sorry for the terms as it appears like those during the Soviet period, but why they are faux-progressive or even Counterreactionary in its appearance these convenors, and those whom oppose the recent protests against Aquino's ill fated polices been given? Is it because the convenors are mostly apologetics of the administration such as Navarro, David, and even Roxas? KOMPRE would been likely to be renamed as KOMARE or KOMPARE out of these people closely connected to the regime and its so-called fanatics whose likely cry is "we want everyone to keep quiet, not to disturb us, for we want to sleep soundly!"

There was even another commentator, who, although not related to KOMPRE, also shared the same disgust as he assailed the protesters and even those who had signed the petitions last Monday; much more that he had elaborated further Social Media as a primary tool for the silent majority to be heard of. Yes, he afford to say that the numbers are sparse compared to last year's, much more that he equated those whom had really invoked their protest, especially initiators whom had seriously committed to the abolishment of Pork Barrel to desperate traditional politicians trying to keep their seats warm and power in their hands.

"...times have changed. The so-called “parliament of the streets” is a thing of the past to give way to the so-called “parliaments of the social media.” This is the digital age; this is the era of social media. As I have said in an earlier post, the street is no longer a viable venue or platform for dissent; it is the social media, which has taken over. Unless issues and concerns are amply ventilated, discussed, debated, and resolved in the social media, people would hardly go to their mass actions on the streets. This is the glowing reality, but they could not see it. In brief, they live in the past; they have become a political anachronism."

But come to think of this, if social media replaced the street as form of parliamentary struggles, it's no difference from limiting struggle to 'those who have greater knowledge' leaving the masses 'stupid' and incapable of leading struggles in spite of they are greatly affected by the issue especially those of land, wage, education, human rights, and other various call of interest. And despite Social media may also support actual mass struggles as a propaganda tool, it is unlikely to be a substitute the way Rizal noticed the impossibility of reformism to end repression after Spain turning down the idea of representing Philippines in the Spanish Cortes. Noli me Tangere and El Filibusterismo did inspire the people to fight, but waging a struggle, such as for social change isn't a dinner party as what Mao Zedong said, citing these so-called 'idealists' whom wanted change, willing to confront, yet in fact scared of being beaten.
Right was Tiglao to call KOMPRE as a phony group knowing that in spite of using social media, of having contacts, they are more of a cheerleader than those of an agitator and a vanguard. Navarro had afford to mobilise as she self-proclaims as initiator of the 'million people march' and spoken against pork barrel. But how about DAP? And how come she and other apologists assailed the protesters, the parliament of the streets? Calling them as passé in favour of warming their butts and facing the computer and redescribed as social media? Much more that through Navarro and Ilustre's words, lobby instead of struggle, bringing your so-called 'pleas' to a really deaf-eared entity or an entity pretended to be deaf?

For sure these pleas cannot be approved by these thinking people such as this:

1.) Filipinization or Nationalization of key basic and strategic industries as key for National Industrialization program
2.) Expansion of the public sector and eradication of corruption, persecuting officials currently implicated in 'wrecking' national development (corruption)
3.) Strict regulation of foriegn investments and emphasis on production and domestic-based development with protection over local companies
4.) Genuine agrarian reform in accordance with the principle of land to the tillers, rural industrialization with cooperatives as the main vehicle
5.) Reexamination of debt policies leading to a call for debt freeze
6.) The further development of trade, technology transfers, and other relations with non-aligned countries
7.) The adoption of nonalignment and peaceful coexistence as a fundamental principle of foreign policy
8.) The termination of unfair treaties especially from the United States and other oppressor countries
9.) Guarantees for the freedom of expression, organization, and participation in political life without discrimination
10.) A real living wage for the laboring people across the board, and strict regulation over prices of goods and services
11.) Release of all political prisoners, Investigation of human rights violations, with prosecution of guilty parties
12.) Resumption of negotiations with the Left-wing National Democratic Front, and Moro groups Moro National Liberation Front, and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front
13.) Genuine autonomy for the Bangsamoro and Cordillera peoples
14.) Encouraging a Patriotic, Scientific, and Popular Education and Culture for National consciousness

And others that are detrimental to the interests of the system. The system would nod about these for chrissakes and even babble in Social Media sites, but in reality they nod for the sake of nodding it so is in commenting for the sake of posts and likes. They would say that the Bangsamoro issue is been discussed through by the congress despite Moro groups annoyed at the slow motions of the legislature in reagrds to the issue, but how about speedy trial of those implicated in human rights violations such as those from the military and paramilitary groups? How about a real wage increase across the board nationwide? Or even genuine agrarian reform especially in this post-CARPER episode? Again, the system cares about its interests: landlords and compradores will still dominate in their respective fields of interest, and their so-called 'benevolence' is as too minimal, treated as a holy water to consecrate and wash altogether their soiled hands.

And social media alone is not enough to support these grievances no matter how realistic it is, likely to be informed but less of agitating them and the capacity to mobilize themselves than those who directly organized and mobilized by the committed. Protesters in the streets, no matter how sparse as according to their observations, is at least continue to clamor and struggle time and again despite being supported by the same social media used by the former. They had faced the reality in order for them to march on and vent rage if not a series of grievances to the intentionally deaf-eared system. Most may are willing to join but out of their busy schedules they chose to solidarise through social media with a series of comments expressing support if not promise to join and turning the once sparse into a bigger one as supposed to.

But again, in spite of their insistence, social media can't be an alternative, much more that those who insist are hypocritical if they afford to march in the streets despite calling street protests passé. No matter how these Reactionary apologists and Counterreactionary "apathetic whiners" justify social media as primary tool over mass actions, they actually justify keeping their buts warm, of being 'comfortable' as its main idea!

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Frisian air in a Gothic Façade in San Sebastian

Frisian air in a Gothic Façade in San Sebastian

Its been so long when I last met her
The one who cares all despite having another
The one who makes coffee with love
So was the French toast, served also with love
It's all but strange at those times
That through my eyes I am inspired by yours
Not because of your beauty alone but your charm
That brought sketches from yours truly done.

I trod in San Sebastian st. to Plaza del Carmen
Early weekday evening
Filled with qualms and contemplating
If not thinking the mass anticipating
Of people in dresses kneeling,
Standing, seeing the man lifting the chalice
And lift from it accompanied by the hymns everyone singing
But as I enter, inside rather few people inside
Standing, seeing the stained windows
And steel columns
Pseudo-European aspirations
In a third world realistic mess.

Imagination had provoked me again
As I had entered the ContemporAntiquitarian edifice
My mind seemed playing Laibach or 'De alde Frisen'
Although the organist practises the song 'Aleluia' in its organ
I was sitting at the lectern thinking
And asking from my inner mine:
When will I meet her, talk, and laugh each other?
Is it today? Tomorrow? The other day?
I don't know when.

Perhaps to be alone is not to interfere
Knowing that she has a man to care and cherish with
I am all but a minor part of her life
Knowing that she serves coffee, french toast
Followed by coping up and giving me a cheer.
I may still remain alone
But the Frisian air continues to blown
Mingle with the scent of 'so in love'
'Atlantis', or 'Clinique Happy' as somebody comes
I drift away after from the crowd for home
But the Frisian air continues to blown
Blowing that made the bells chiming on
Rining in a comic sunday evening
Set against the greyish blue background
Of the Gothic façade in San Sebastian.

But inspite of loneliness comes hope
Hoping to see her again, and rekindle the fire in the candle that is left unlit
In my heart.

For Frisian Auditor,

Let them whine! But the protests will continue!

Let them whine! But the protests will continue!

It's been last Monday as people from all walks of life went to Luneta park for another day of committment. 

United out of digust against the clear and present issue, these people, coming from different districts of Metropolitan Manila had converged together to sign a petition, a popular initiative in order to scrap the infamous pork barrel and its various schemes made by interest-seeking and keeping politicos to generate their interests. 
The petition was started last Sunday in Cebu, there thousands had committed in signing as a form of protest against the actions taken by the system all in spite of the latter's attempt to oppose and to divide the people united by a common program of action. That as according to former Senator Francisco Tatad:

"Which kept on coming back like the cat with nine lives, despite the Supreme Court ruling declaring it null and void."

Tatad, in his article at the Manila Times this Wednesday had expressed congratulations to Archbishop Jose Palma for hosting, as well as to the Cebuanos who had supported the initiative. The initiative last Monday in Manila is but a continuation of last Sunday's mass action, and still continuing as of this day to gain million signatures, a sign of both committment to National unity and a protest against the system.

As people continue to sign in the petition, and watching the entire concert on stage, it is pretty much obvious that the people demand transparency, accountability, as well as urging the authorities to stop wasting funds through abolishing Pork Barrel and various schemes such as the current Disbursement Acceleration Program. However, the system would still continue insisting the pseudo-legality of the program despite knowing that they'll fail in justifying it; much more that they target the opposition thoroughly as corrupt, while coddling the corrupt from their very own ranks and circles. Apologists had afford to make a series of rhetorics trying to malign those whom taking popular initiatives to scrap various forms of pork barrel schemes as well as persecuting officials, including the President for misusing the money of the people. 

Well, no matter how sparse as according to the media the number of people participated in Manila, the system fails to avert the tremor of protest, much more that in their actions taken, they're just making the social volcano having the capacity to explode that will damage their so-called "righteous way" and the "society" they had protected for out of their own interest. Latley they are trying to rally the people through social media how their popular initiative as all but failure, they even cite rather social media, rather than mass actions made people enlightened and willing to call for reforms, much more in setting changes that actually end up as scraps of paper if not Half-baked yet appeared as realized for the sake of impressing the populace. 
That somehow this writer would say that it is pretty much obvious how the present system, through their apologists and its Counterreactionaries self-proclaiming as reformists as trying to curry favor with the people by making a Machiavellian slip such as they benefited from projects no matter how corrupt or controversial the legislator it was yet appearing as benevolent. 
The money being disbursed, no matter how controversial it was had been all allocated to projects that also benefits while describing those whom oppose as hypocritical if not opportunistic to use the controversy just to malign the presidency and the system itself while benefited from so-called 'funds'.

But in spite of what these Reactionary opportunists and Counterreactionary apologists doing, the people are greatly enlightened by the issue and willing to sign and join in the protests if possible. Since people had hated Marcos and Arroyo in spite of his full-blown projects citing his corruption and favoritism towards his wife and his clique of military bureaucrats and compradore 'technocrats', so is Aquino and his so-called 'friends' whose real intention of justifying soiled-handed 'projects' as keeping their interests firm and the people numb as they're benefited and contented.

Right was the late Diosdado Macapagal in his preface about his idea for a Welfare State. Citing corruption and interest-emphasising bullshit, the former President whom likely to become a 'Social Democrat' expressed both disgust and hope as he said:

"The exploitation of the nation's resources for the benefit of a few is traceable to the colonial period when in pursuit of administering and developing the country primarily for the aggrandizement of the colonial power, the government and economy was placed in the continuous control of the representatives of the ruling power and the native who collaborated with them in a coalition of monopoly and exploitation.

When Independence was finally "restored" in 1946, the country remained in the monopolistic hold of the indigenous elite who had reaped the opulence and power from the aggrandizing coalition with the colonial master whom they had largely replaced. 

In the exuberance of liberation from alien rile and exploitation, it is natural from the impoverished masses to hope that they could expect better justice from the new ruling oligarchy composed of their own countrymen. But they have been continually disenchanted as six administrations went by without meaningful reform that would give them the social justice denied them for centuries except to some extent in land reform which abolished peasant slavery in 1963 but even this has been inadequately implemented.

Instead of reform and social justice, the people have seen monopoly and exploitation in continued ascendancy, vested interests expanding and becoming more strongly entrenched, government being used as a mechanism for worsening corruption instead of implement for true public service, national leaders joining the vested interests instead of helping to lift the masses from their bondage, and in this process the continued exploitation and oppression, popular rights and liberties were being steadily repressed in order to insure the continued despotism by the politico-economic autarky over the populace who are helpless in their poverty. The pang of persistent exploitation has been aggravated by the painful circumstance that now the oppression is not so much from foreigners as from our own countrymen.

From observation as a citizen spectator as well as from acquired insight as one who occupied the presidency preceding this present incumbent, I feel that after the blood-spilling January demonstrations there can be an end of the crisis and pacific moving forward only if the reigning politico-economic oligarchy realize that substantial reform can no longer be denied the people. It is not enough to strengthen defences of public authority against the students and the people; what is vital is the institution of revolutionary or satisfactory reforms. Revolution has become inexorable, be it a peaceful or a violent one."

Aquino and his clique, especially those of Mar Roxas, Erwin Lacierda, Leah Navarro, and Florencio Abad, and even Risa Hontiveros may expressed Macapagal-esque in justifying DAP, the Presidential Pork, and funds and projects of controversial nature as social justice and providing welfare. But the late member of the Liberal Party knows the fact that poverty and corruption, of self-proclaimed 'good' and notoriously bad crooks continue to make the Philippines worsen and near-helpless to resolve the issue. Did Navarro, Abad, Hontiveros, and other self-proclaimed reformists said the same straightforward statement like Macapagal's such as only if the reigning politico-economic oligarchs able to reform the country? No. Much more that their programs, like those of PhilHealth, Socialized Tuition Systems, and Conditional Cash Transfer programs aren't even consider to be for the welfare of the people knowing that they contribute yet it fails to be consider it as welfare citing the fact that it did harm than good. Why not subsidised rice to avert rice crisis and to generate support for the farmers in the countryside? Did that DAP or any schemes from that goddamn pork barrel helped them? No! If they did so, it's more of a propaganda ploy, a political gimmick, than a serious committment to the laboring people as what Macapagal yearned for as a Social Democrat. 

But instead of being straightforward as what their righteous path as intended, it becomes bended and swayed to and fro: using terms as civil society, popular democracy, and appearing politico-economic oligarchs as benevolent with their so-called charity programs and cooperation with the government though Public-Private Partnerships. But in reality, they failed in realizing other than providing a façade if not an entire Potemkin village full of half-baked promises and paper programs, reforms that appear populist yet actually benefits the interest-seeking and keeping elite. Yes, they failed in making the Philippines self-reliant and firm in keeping its independence despite 'restored' in 1946; that they want the country be dependent on imports, foreign aid, while exporting every raw and semi-processed material and treating industrialization as a mere showcase of pride like its cultural counterpart.
Since they justify DAP, did that DAP also allocated to those willing to industrialize the countryside the way it had disbursed a sufficient amount to the owners of Hacienda Luisita? Nope. Corrupt officials, despotic landlords, the entire poltico-economic oligarchy of themselves benefited from it; and now they oppose those who wanted to scrap altogether what they benefited such as DAP and various kinds of programs that compsed Pork Barrel altogether.

Anways, the path that is righteous is indeed a killer highway and a road to ruin to most people has expected from the beginning; there compradore oligarchs, corrupt bureaucrats, and Counterreactionary pseudo-reformists may had 'benefited' from that so-called "path" knowing that the economy they're taking about is fast progressing.
That actually it isn't. When will people stop being numb and unnoticingly be described as 'overdressed monkeys' by self-proclaimed benefactors providing half-baked projects, programs while extorting them time and again?

Let those who oppose the will of the people whine as they want, but the protest marches, petition signings, and various kinds of struggle against the system will continue.

Or in Marcosian terms, "The Revolt of the Poor" continues still.

Thank you.


For now, a video featuring those who convened the entire event singing the Filipino version of Les Miserables' "Song of the Barricades". Enjoy!

Saturday, 23 August 2014

"Of Over-Dressed Monkeys and a centuries-old defect"

"Of Over-Dressed Monkeys
 and a centuries-old defect"

It was 1937 when Jose P. Laurel, then as secretary during the Commonwealth period went to Japan in an Educational tour. In that country what he impressed at first was that he sought most Japanese, young and old able to read and write. Once, he asked one of his friends, a professor from Tokyo Imperial University the reason for such apparent universal literacy, and replied:

"We have cumpolsory education in Japan which you do not have in the Philippines..."

Laurel accepted the fact that with the lack of facilities, especially schools made Education not able to accomodate those whom yearning to study.

"Do all Filipino children of school age go to school?" Was the professor's next question.

Laurel simply replied in the negative. "If that's the case, there is some defect in your school system in the Philippines." He remarked.

The said anecdote shows how Philippine education failed to produce professionals in spite of its programs that actually pegged to the interests of the ruling few. Japan's education is somehow cumpolsory and geared to national interest as contrary to the Philippines' blatant antipatriotic policy of using education as part of its labor export policy. It also shows that in spite of the so-called developments given by the United States, as well as the puppet commonwealth during the interwar period, as well as today, that Education failed to cultivate Filipinos a sense that was, and is different from mere flying of the flag, singing the anthem, anything that treats patriotism as a mere cosmetic whilst emphasising unjust wholesale westernization and cheap labor.

In fact, despite what was happened during the pre-war period, same old issues such as in this state of Philippine education remains at-large. And right was the Japanese professor to say that there's a defect that has to be deal upon. Yes, there's a defect that continues to aggravate in spite of reforms merely used to support neoliberalism and commercialization instead of patriotism and popularization. Few years ago, Nursing became an in-demand course but there are still shortage of Nurses, Doctors, Medical personnel especially in the countryside; it is quite ridiculous why on earth that course was in-demand yet still there's shortage? The course and the professionals created are "made" to be "exported" in countries like the United States and the United Kingdom; while its own countryside, in its medical facilities like those of still-suffering Eastern Visayas is still suffering from lack of what is needed, be it medicines and those who have the license to administer.

However, the system will still insist how the education system has been improved, that literacy has been increased, all inspite of the prevailing problem such as what Mr. Laurel said decades ago. But actually, the defect aggravates as the system emphasise profit over service to the community with schools increasing tuition and other fees, as well as gearing towards the demands of the market such as forcing the youth to take courses that are in demand by the profit seeking interests, much more that as they reduce patriotism into a museumified pieces, they wanted certain subjects, such as in tertiary level to reduce their units if not be moved to the senior high school levels like today's issue on the Filipino subject. Sometimes, this person would say that Japan did study Japanese from primary to tertiary levels, that they use Japanese in other subjects although they also apply other languages such as English if not German, yet still they emphasise the importance of their national language as part of their identity; the Philippines, on the other hand, in taking American-made contributions too positively, rather sacrifices its own as if the former as superior, modern and gearing towards progress no matter how exploitative it is as a Capitalist society.

As according to Ernesto Ponce, in his writeup "What did American Democracy give to the Philippines?" Said:

"Someone said that 'in the Philippines, a territory of the United States for the past Forty years, America taught Democracy, constructed roads and built fine buildings, popularised education and introduced modern conviniences like ice-boxes, electric fans, sewing machines and motor-cars.' Because of these activities, there are some Filipinos who believe in 'America's friendship'. But was this friendship a true one? No, of course not! A certain high official of the United States government once branded the Filipinos 'Over-Dressed Monkeys."

Yes, Filipinos had acted like Over-Dressed Monkeys just to show its nonsensical cosmetic pride yet failed to realize the true, self-mold potential of the Filipino as the latter continues to just copy for chrissakes. An economy that misemphasise production, a culture that museumifies yet misemphasise patriotism, a military that presents as 'patriotic' yet fails to protect national sovereignty yet acts as a security for the privileged oligarchy, the Filipino continues to be miseducated by the system knowing that the latter is able to generate profits by fooling them and presenting it as "literate."
Worse, having a common man afford to call a fellow one a stupid voter not knowing that there are no other politicos presented by the present rotten order except those whom they called as 'hindrance to progress'. Counterreactionary if one had afford to clamor for changes yet they reduce social matters into those as if only a single person has the 'guts' to face with as well as misrecognizing the importance of mass struggles as part of bringing changes to a community such as those of insisting genuine social justice. Yes, these people whom are whining yet apathetic are miseducated than those who are really clamoring, they are by-products of a defect that continues to aggavate the problem not just in education but the entire society as well. Ponce's statement also continues to creep, that the United States, as well as the system has to act benevolent, paternalistic with all the infrastructures being done yet actually made merely to appease, acting as a holy water to consecrate their soiled hands than to support the people as driven by their conscience.
Remember, it is the same entities that thunbs down industrialization regardless of assuming they are industrializing the country; they also thumbs down land reform also regardless of assuming that they had declare the farmers having the right to till for themselves. So is education, they thumbs down what is Patriotic, Scientific, and Mass oriented regardless of assuming that their education system is for the country, progress, and for the people.

Admittingly speaking, Laurel's anecdote continues to be relevant as of this day. The system may continue its short-term, 'band aid' solution than to make a massive overhaul for it 'sacrifices' their so-called 'hardships' such as profit. They would say time and again the importance of education and hard work as gears towards progress and remolding as an individual, but as policies continue to serve the interests of the few then what's the use of that importance other than making them as slaves driven by promises of high pay and yet ridden by crisis? They would say that the Philippines increases its literacy rate, yet how come salaries for teachers, facilities, books, materials are inadequate in spite of having an "budget" that is allegedly "increased" compared to last year? Still, compared to Laos and Vietnam, the Philippines has lot more ideas to think of its own, far from the dictates being imposed in exchange for a loan; and failing to meet the demands fails to lessen illiteracy, much more if it is treated as a profiteering enterprise than as a social responsibility towards to the 99% of working poor an a suffering middle class combined.
Right was José Maria Sisón, as well as other educators to say that in order to improve education is through a Patriotic, Scientific, and Popular one knowing that the Philippines has to rebuild and renovate as a nation. Neighbouring countries like Japan, China, Singapore had used education to create professions geared towards National and social interest like Engineers, Entrepreneurs, Doctors, Lawyers. Call it repititious the mandatory study of one's native tounge, Humanities, Logic, as well as Social Sciences in the tertiary level, knowing that the Philippines itself, through its educators swore that its subjects has to have a correct orientation, discipline, and at the same time flexibility of thought, and creativity in the formation of the desired mould of citizenship.

Rather than keeping policies that aggravates a centuries-old defect and be justified by today's Over-Dressed Monkeys.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

All after listening to Nasheed

All after listening to Nasheed

(Or how the music from the East is both spiritual and militant)

It was last week when yours truly was listening to songs in which most people likely to ridicule citing the language being used and devoid of instruments except the human voice. But regardless of the ridicule, this person seemed to enjoy the music that is both, spiritual and militant, with the latter somehow being misunderstood and even slandered by many due to the videos and the lyrics being shown and sung. 
But regardless of their slander and ridicule, of calling it as scary if not weird, yours truly rather chose to listen and enjoy the music knowing that it also inspires the way he listens to any kind of music he appreciates.

Defining Nasheed and its relevance in the Islamic world

The Nasheed generally deal with religious themes, with messages made to guide Muslims on the right way, and most of which are simply made as a praise to God or to his Prophet (peace and prayers of Allah be upon him). Usually it was sung a capella since there are no other music instruments being used according to Islamic teachings. But oftentimes, background tone is derived from numerous people mimicking instruments by humming in tune, or a frame drum called Daff. Other muslim poets used Nasheed in their secular poetries, that usually describes life and love, although most of those poems had their works likely to be accompanied by flute or a lute.

That somehow became part of the literature and music of the Islamic world. Mainstream media often describes the Islamic world as women in hejabs, men in Turbans, masjids in its splendour, the holy Qur'an and its magnificent surahs, and the strumming of lutes and daff if not the Mehter of the Turks that also invokes the militant nature of the Muslim warrior. 

In fact, listening to Nasheed, or any other music from the Spiritually-or-mystically-imbued East comes with understanding regardless of the language being used as well as the belief of the listener, with or without instruments, as long as the message has been given upon to. However, people may think badly out of it since most Nasheeds are synonymous to Jihad (struggle, commonly known as 'holy war'), and Jihad is always synonymous to terrorism. 

Nasheed as a music of struggle and peace

But come to think of this, why Muslims also convey their aspirations, wisdom, including those of struggle through music even without any instrument except for a daff drum or just a capella? Not all Muslims can carry a deadly weapon, but they can turn music, or any kind of literature into a weapon that strikes the mind and heart of every foe and inspires the heart and mind of every warrior so as to remember the fallen dead becoming a martyr.

Admittingly speaking, in listening to those music made this writer compels to write the way he listens to metal, punk, or various forms of music he understood much. He listens for he seeks inspiration to his works regardless of the message being sung aside from putting the mind at ease after a life's work such as this. To a Mujahid, the Nasheed is a statement of struggle, and to cite Qutb's, a struggle of Islam against those whom trying to take down and oppress.

And speaking of Jihad, Jihad isn't all about carrying a gun, but also a struggle for one's self, restraining the so-called self from the desires like those of the flesh just to be closer to the almighty; Zakat can be a form of struggle, for giving compassion to the needy regardless of its belief in the spirit of humanity also means struggle for justice especially for those in dire need. Some, if not most Nasheeds are also a form of struggle as its bards, witness to the reality had to vent their statements, of realities in a form of poems being sung; that somehow made the ignorant others making it unjustly synonymous to those who kill and calling it as "terrorism." The music of Hamas, mostly Nasheeds speaks of their struggle against Israel.

But not all Nasheeds are inclined towards Jihad as what most people think of. Some speaks of peace just like Yusuf Islam's music or Talaalbadru whose song seemed to make a person at peace, or let's just say 'chill' with the words given as well as the flow of music that consists of the human voice and a finger snap.

Anyways, this person is not a Muslim, but appreciating their music as well as their art, way of life comes respect regardless of religion. People may fail to understand as mainstream media usually fails to give a good description other than a war-mongering one. They afford to play the Jihad Nasheeds such as those being shown by militant groups, yet they fail to understand the meaning behind the song, or let's just say 'why they fight?', also not knowing that not all Nasheeds or any Islamic music speaks of war, as there are also those which speaks the beauty that is, given by the almighty.

A part of religious life and a nation's culture

Regardless of the slander, there will always be chants being sung if not music being played the way books being read and artworks being drawn. In most conservative countries with Islam as its dominant religion, Music is been prohibited yet chants like Nasheeds served as its 'music'; but there are also Islamic countries that also acknowledges music as part of their culture aside from chanting. The Ottoman Turks, with its Mehterhane band had contributed to Western music with Mozart and Beethoven applied its style such as 'Rondo Alla Turca.' The Guitar was also a product of the Arab world so was the Triangle.

Other than Nasheed, there are other eastern spirituals that also became a part of both religious life and a nation's culture. In fact, during his student days, this writer was listening to a Hindu mantra that was, accompanied by an harmonium and a mridanga; and like the former that speaks of invocation, it seems that the writer felt in a state of trance as the words makes the mind feel at ease if not be imbued the essence of the statement such as its wisdom. The Pasiong Mahal of the Roman Catholics, that was sung during lent, attributing to the hardships of the Lord Jesus Christ, may've been partially based from the chants of the pre-Hispanic past not just the chansons of the west that invokes heroism like those of Roland. 

The bard, in its highest spiritual state tends to create what is not just pleasing to the ears of man but those of the supreme citing the melody and message being spoken such as praise, lament, or even revenge. It may sound weird for many, citing the fact that it is uncommon for them to hear the sacred that is, other than being played in the church whilst listening most of the time the sinful and the profane.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

"After seeing this"

"After seeing this"

(Or after reading news regarding an accident,
 and the people's clamor for safety, efficiency, and affordability
In mass transport system in the Philippines)

Its been days ago when this writer read about a report about an accident that contributes to the growing clamor regarding the state of the Philippine mass transport system. The accident isn't just a mere glitch that can be stopped and its passengers be promptly evacuated, but instead an accident that brought many of its passengers wounded.

As according to news, dozens were injured on that Wednesday afternoon after a defective coach of the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) went out of control and slammed through a steel barricade of the Taft Avenue Station in Pasay City. 50 were wounded and one of them is an infant that requires immediate attention same as the other wounded ones in hospitals such as Pasay's own San Juan de Dios. 

The accident seemed to be one of the few, yet serious problems surrounding mass transport like train-related accidents, and even accident-prone overspeeding buses in Manila (especially from ordinary buses).

But other than accidents such as the latest, there are glitches caused by defective trains, faulty wirings, and inefficiences surrounding the handling of passengers in Philippine mass transport systems that made its concerned customers question the authorities on how they handle the situation if not improve the status of mass transport. And with the problems involving the national budget being discussed and overheard by the people, the issue on mass transport is somehow connected on how the state allocates its budget in the Transportation and Communications Dempartment, and in it be allocated in specific authorities such as the Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA), Metro Rail (MRT), as well as the Philippine National Railways (PNR) in improving every station, buying new trains, fixing wiring and electric generators, anything that ensures safety of its passengers and efficiency when it comes to the train's passage "on time". 

However, speaking of the national budget and the state's handling over mass transport would say that most officials are still clinging to their self-gratification no matter how small or big time it is, much more that the state itself, trying to downsize its expenditures in maintaining transport and communications, continues to toying with privatising the entire mass transport system in which potential buyers, mainly oligarchs controlling the power and real estate sector willing to grab a chunk just like in water, power, and in maintaining public roads. Metro Rail Transit, the company behind that goddamn MRT is even controlled as a partnership between private and government with the former undertaking its maintainance and the latter with its budget used for maintaining. 
But with the MRT accident as well as other glitches involving mass transport it would been a clamor from the other side such as privatizing altogether mass transport for it means efficiency and less corruption as they think about the present state. But actually, it's been so long that the authorities have half-hearted idea involving the improvement of mass transport except buying second hand junk and mere repairing, making patches rather than improving altogether as most countries do in regards to mass transport systems. That they continue toying the idea of privatizing mass transport altogether through commercialization and public-private partnerships such as in MRT; while on the other hand they wanted to imitate neighbouring countries such as Singapore, Malaysia, or even Europe and their favorite United States, yet failing to stimulate production through industrialization and instead contening in imports that also meant consumption. 
For sure, some, if not most people remember how the president stated that traffic caused by a greater number of cars serves as its basis for a thriving economy (and this time includes congested ports). Then therefore, why a need for a mass transport especially railroads both in the city and in the countryside? There are buses and trucks to serve better than these coaches on tracks! That's what  the president and his clique thinks of just like his predecessors treat trains as a mere showcase, a museumified piece for tourists to ride on while leaving the rest to buses and trucks as the primary mode of transporting people and goods regardless of increasing fares. 

And as people continue to question the authorities' failure to address the issue, if not handing over a series of press releases, others seemed crying for privatising altogether mass transport using accidents, inefficiencies, and corruption as its reason. The commercialization of state-controlled mass transport system, as well as partnerships with the profit-driven private sector had served as 'stepping stones' to eventual privatisation no matter how unintentional as it appears; but as the corrupt state continues to toy the idea on behalf of the oligarchs would say that they fail to provide services the way they privatise healthcare and commercialise education. After all, from whose class represents the state anyway?
Obviously, for a landlord-and-compradore-controlled state, the Philippines fails to develop for the mindset being imposed by the system is all but to consume than to produce especially if that is for the well being of the society (while at the same time compradores love to profit in seeing people consuming imports rather than producing what comes from theirs). In a nation whose central capital territory is as full of modern day buildings yet fail to stimulate production by means of creating major industries, this writer find it strange why people wanted anything modern and yet they fail to pressure the system to industrialize regardless of having awash with cash thanks to foreign investments and loans from international moneylenders? The Philippines had faced controversies involving state and budget from Pork Barrel to today's Disbursement Acceleration Plan in which the system affords to brag it off no matter how corrupt the recipient is. They even want to privatise mass transport citing the private sector's 'efficiency' in handling "basic social services", from "public-private partnerships" to eventual buying of government stocks; but no matter how the good intention the profit driven sector yearning for, it is simply because they want to cripple mass transport in favor of just buses and a dozen number of cars imported from the west the way it happened post-war when the old tramway system not being rehabilitated but instead be contented in buses and other 4-wheeled transport. And culturally speaking, Cars aren't really a mode of transportation in a pride seeking, consume-driven society, but instead a mere source of pride to brag with.

And all after seeing glitches, inefficiencies, and an accident that brought passengers wounded, again, it shows how the system fails in providing services while willing to give altogether to those whose intention is just-profit. The mass transport system is somehow profitable based from the growing number of customers using the MRT, LRT, or even the PNR; but the state seemed to be half-hearted when it comes to maintaining it the way it took years for the PNR, known as PhilTrack to have new trains, and rehabilitate new tracks, yet fail to improve further. 

Worse, failure to provide a sound alternative to the rising fares like jeeps and buses. People wanted safe, and efficient trips, but does it mean being safe and efficient has to be expensive? Then the state has to provide safe, efficient, and affordable the way other countries did in its mass transport systems. They would take crisis as reference in justifying increasing fares, but come to think of this, in a nation awash with cash, and a government that takes pride in its so-called progress, why not support its mass transport as well as others such as health care and education rather than leaving it altogether to the profit-driven few? 

Anyways, having mass transport-related glitches, accidents as well as inefficiencies also happened in developed countries like Singapore. However, compared to the former that emphasise mere profit over safety and efficiency, the latter is at least lessened its problem in its mass transport system knowing that the safety of their Mass Rapid Transit was even questioned by the public after several accidents on the system during the late 1980s and early 1990s. Most of the problems have been addressed by the government, and many safety measures are visible to users of the system.

And come to think of this, Singapore is a progressive, communitarian-oriented country, yet despite having their standards of living better than other Asian countries, they emphasise mass transport systems than seeing more cars in every road. Perhaps because Singapore is an urbanised isle to maintain with; and having limited space, such as an isle to support a thriving society requires strict policies, regulations, forces that makes a community great as compared to those whose trying hard rugged individualism that creates insignificant results. Mass transport systems, whether it is wheeled or railed has to be supported by the community especially through its own government knowing that most people can't even afford a car for themselves yet seeking a transport that ables them to go to their work on time, much more that there are people whom rather not to waste gasoline in their vehicles but at the same time seeking for transport that is worth affordable in its fares. 

That somehow should be a lesson for the authorities whom controlling mass transport, be it from the Metro Rail (MRT), LRT, and the PhilTrack (PNR), as well as the owners of buses that dominate major roads such as EDSA. This writer had been riding in public transport despite rising costs of fuel that affects fares, as well as watching reports involving inefficiency when it comes to safety and affordability of mass transport systems whether it is a bus or rail, and through those events somehow made it a duty to question, as well as to insist additional safety, increase affordability, and efficiency involving mass transport especially in a developing society like this so-called Philippines.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

The butcher falls, yet where's justice?

The butcher falls, yet where's justice?

It was yesterday when militant groups shouted justice as former General Jovito Palparan has been captured by the authorities after three years hiding in Sta. Mesa, Manila.

Known as the "butcher" and "dead man walking", Jovito Palparan orchestrated a series of atrocities that includes summary executions and enforced disappearances against those criticizing the government. Activists, human rights groups, and even cultural personages were being threatened by anti-insurgency operations the former general had been enjoyed with, especially those of "Oplan Bantay Laya" in which former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo gave a citation during her state of the nation address.

The operations that Palparan initiated or participated had made him had been a personage of impunity. He was notorious for his alleged role in the abduction, torture, and enforced disappearance of University of the Philippines farmers’ rights activists Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empeno in 2006. In spite of his denials linking him to the crime, there is an evidence linking his unit to the torture of Raymond Manalo, who later testified that he witnessed soldiers under Palparan’s command torture Cadapan and Empeno.

But Instead of accepting the ordeal of imprisonment and trial as a once defender of the still present order, he evaded arrest for the past 3 years, and thumbing his nose at the authorities with the alleged help of former military colleagues. The present administration, whom once recieved news he hiding at Zambales and Cagayan de Oro described it as a feat in his arrest at Sta. Mesa, Manila by agents of the National Bureau of Investigation and the naval intelligence unit of the Armed Forces, giving them a warning to other rights abusers who routinely elude justice for serious crimes.

However, despite the present system's appraisal in capturing and imprisoning the high ranking murder-general, Palparan's capture doesn't mean it would guarantee justice for the killed and the disappeared. Activists still clamored for swift justice with the evidences pointing directly at him and his men such as those connected to the torture and illegal detainment of Cadapan and Empeno, and the deaths of Marcellana and Gumanoy. The system may continue denying the still-brewing dirty war against those against their wishes, much more that the Philippines is not like Argentina or Chile in giving swift justice against officials implicated in atrocities "in the name of defending 'democracy'", but instead coddled them for they gained merits being on the side of the system if not sharing the same idea of disregarding the laws of war. Palparan shared the same reason as Argentina's Videla in justifying the dirty war as a process in order to end subversion as if "better to kill one in every ten" or "reduce the entire population" so as to "end the problem"; Personally, he would have suffered the same fate such as Argentina's Aramburu by being captured (or in the system's terms, kidnapped), trialed, and killed by the Montoneros, or former Congressman and Marcos-era torturer Rodolfo Aguinado being killed by the Partisans with the death warrant signed by the peoples court; and Palparan doesn't like to have that kind of fate be imposed on him. 
And since he thinks that he's been monitored closely especially that place is in Manila (on the site where activists converge), then he had no chance but to surrender to the lesser evil such as the rotten state he had once served to; he even paranoically stated that he doesn't want to have the same fate as those of his murderous colleagues killed by the avenging partisan "all in the name of justice" such as a revolutionary one. 

In spite of his imprisonment, victims of his so-called "victories" still cry for justice the way his die-hard fanatics wanted his release and continue his actions. The latter both deny and accept that he's the butcher for he did his job in curbing counter-insurgency, simply by just putting those who are unarmed with the armed together for they oppose the order in which being despised most; but the former will always be heard since these people, mostly families of victims felt how injustice had been set upon during his so-called exploits.

Anyways, there are more conscienceless ones just like the butcher himself. And its a duty for the people to be vigilant in pursuit of imposing justice against them. The butcher falls, yet where's justice? It's up to the people to be vigilant, in keeping justice against those whose intention is to keep the system satisfy in its repression.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

"La Città Nuova": the ContemporAntiquitarian aspiration of an Italian futurist

"La Città nuova": the ContemporAntiquitarian aspiration 
of an Italian futurist

At first, it seems that yours truly had recalled one of the visionaries whom left a ContemporAntiquitarian legacy in the history of architecture. All despite not been realized, artists and architects alike had somehow afford to be like them, and one example is Antonio Sant'Elia.

Antonio Sant’Elia was born in 1888 in the Italian town of Cuomo, Lombardy. A builder by training, he was an Italian visionary architect whom participated in the futurist movement and allegedly wrote its manifesto that invokes his view and aspiration. 

Hiis association with Futurism was forged between 1912 and 1914, as he, influenced by the industrial cities of the United States and the architects Renzo Picasso, Otto Wagner and Adolf Loos, he began a series of design drawings for a futurist Città Nuova ("New City") that was conceived as a symbol of a new age. In August 1914, The manifesto, entitled "Futurist Architecture" was published by Sant'Elia, although this is been subject to debate; and in it the author stated that: "the decorative value of Futurist architecture depends solely on the use and original arrangement of raw or bare or violently colored materials", monumental-like with its towering appearance but different from the neo-classical approach that remained during the early 20th century. 
His vision, invoked in his works was for a highly industrialised and mechanized city of the future, which he saw not as a mass of individual buildings but a vast, multi-level, interconnected and integrated urban conurbation designed around the "life" of the city; while his extremely influential designs featured vast monolithic skyscraper buildings with terraces, bridges and aerial walkways that embodied the sheer excitement of modern architecture and technology.

Obviously, in today's sense would say it is deemed "science fiction-like" the sketches Sant'Elia had made, for early 20th century had leaned towards the wonders of science just like 19th century towards reason. But as remnants of the past rather oppose the mondernizing approach of architects and visionares like him, Sant'Elia, in his Manifesto said:

"The utter antithesis between the modern world and the old is determined by all those things that formerly did not exist. Our lives have been enriched by elements the possibility of whose existence the ancients did not even suspect. Men have identified material contingencies, and revealed spiritual attitudes, whose repercussions are felt in a thousand ways. Principal among these is the formation of a new ideal of beauty that is still obscure and embryonic, but whose fascination is already felt even by the masses. We have lost our predilection for the monumental, the heavy, the static, and we have enriched our sensibility with a taste for the light, the practical, the ephemeral and the swift. We no longer feel ourselves to be the men of the cathedrals, the palaces and the podiums. We are the men of the great hotels, the railway stations, the immense streets, colossal ports, covered markets, luminous arcades, straight roads and beneficial demolitions."

However, leaning towards the future also comes a monumental feat but is secondary to the emphasised utility. Towering so to speak but accomodates large number of people like today's condominiums, It may similar to the Rome of the past, but that Rome Sant'Elia would thinking of wasn't the Rome of the cobblestone-roads and ancient monuments, but a Rome wherein roads  being  paved for the diesel-driven automobiles, of houses that emphasises comfortability rather than mere beauty, a society that emphasises speed and accuracy no matter how simple or to those who slander: "devoid of anything what they accustomed to."

And like most artists this person had admired to and tried to emulate, his works meant a utopia that continues to be conceptualize in this continuing past. The edifices being shown not just provide inspiration to some, if not most architects, artists, even writers thinking about a 'coming' that is a realization, but a desire to fulfill of what people had yearned for: conducive living, social justice, co-prosperity and co-equality amongst the sexes, and a rebirth of dignity that has been ruined by slander and self-contemplation.

Once the late Italian dictator Mussolini had incorporated futurism in his Fascist goal like Hitler with his classicism for his German Reich. Stalin did afford to incorporate some futurism and classicism in socialist realism in pursuit of creating a Proletarian paradise, as evidenced by the towering edifices in Moscow as well as the bridges that are made of steel in river Moskva; admittingly speaking, those times were those of passionate future-leaning idealists trying to turn intangible ideas into tangible matter,  of what was fictitious into something that as remarkably realised. Actually, leaders during those times  often use architecture in forging a society different from the usual to invoke the aspirations of the people such as earlier being stated. Mussolini's Italy had futurists tending to forge ideas, designs, communities alike to invoke a new Italy although his aspirations are too focused on the grandeur of Imperial Rome (hence he also insist the Roman-era style as well); Stalin's Soviet Russia did the same of forging ideas, designs, communities in pursuit of surpassing capitalist west and to build a socialist, proletarian paradise oppressed peoples looked upon it as an inspiration. 

Back to Sant'Elia and his works, it is undeniable the growth, progression of things in this continuing past so is the aspirations both from the individual and the community. And It may take years to realize the blueprints he had drawn if few people will dare to make it as a reaction from the prevailing ones that is, disorder and unaspiring, made merely to sell than made to instill the wonder of the future in this continuing past. 

ContemporAntiquitarian indeed what Sant'Elia had made, that in his "Città Nuova" it also showed a bridge between the past and present, the ancient and the contemporary, it may not been traditional-like and classical, but what was drawn showed a semblance of ancient monumentalism and contemporary utility. It may not been adorned by motifs what classicists, traditionalists tend to insist, but it invokes aspiration citing those whom had yearned for a world that would say as just.

And, although futurists may deny what this writeup being stated such as bridging the present and the past for the future, Futurism is itself became a legacy of a past continuing citing numerous works such as painting to architecture. Architects like Sant'Elia had the idea of reshaping man's minds though their  aspirations such as towards the future. 

Again, they are forging back then a new design using existing tools, teachings, and imaginations to counter the prevailing ones; they simply wanted the light, practical, and swift especially after how then-modern machineries had  brought them a semblance of ease in their labour: they wanted to maximize these so as to realize what they wanted to see.

After all, Futurism, from the word "future" is a reaction from classicism that leans much towards the past, but as a ContemporAntiquitarian, again, the future trying to be convieve is tempered with the aspirations of long ago, as speed will always be tempered with efficiency, and quantity of things created is tempered with the quality of things being made out of. 

Monday, 4 August 2014



By Kat Ulrike

"Court of Comrades" by Nicholas Shneyder

Like last few years, commentators had expressed ridicule if not rage, especially in regards to the radicals marching and confronting riot policemen during a protest action. Last Monday's action for example, aside from praise from those against the system and to the regime, there are those whom used the events, as well as other related actions to ridicule so is to insist their stances acting as an alternative to the disorder: that somehow made those whom took the revolutionary path opted to debate to realize their mistakes if not to educate to rethink their statements.

And as for yours truly, thinking of these people as Counterreactionaries knowing that they clamor for change yet at the same time keeping their privileges such as the status quo they enjoy with.

"Actions in response to an existing reaction,"
(Or being against the system 
yet at the same time keeping the old order)

Based on the word that means "an action taken in response to a prior reaction", Counterreactionaries are those whom countering an existing reactionary order, whom usually tends to be on behalf of the people in general yet in fact to those whom are trying to protect their privileges by using the statements of the people; they afford to join in a band-wagon of sorts yet at the same time applauded the actions taken by the system in spite of being heavily criticized by most (hence opportunism); these people are mainly petitbourgeois 'idealists' (like any other self-proclaimed reformist or revolutionary), seeking for an alternative to mass actions and civil disobedience, especially by means of social media if not good old lobbying and negotiations, peaceful means in currying favor with the system. Only to see that Social media, or the computer as a tool actually means comfort for these "thinking people" since the latter had rather take time using the computer as a tool for social change instead of marching and chanting slogans, confronting the system itself, clamoring for reforms if not major overhaul of the society.

Quite nice though to see their effort in using social media to spearhead changes, but to content in such benefits is a two way road: one would meant enjoyment, that you are satisfied with anything you can afford, but the other side of the coin would mean a less approach to an inconvenient reality (especially in immersing ones self to the laborers and the urban poor) as it favours the tangible illusion of comfort of facing the computer if not basing much on newspaper clippings and making writeups trying to act "concerning" towards the laboring people. 

As most petitbourgeois nowadays, no matter how 'idealistic' they are in seeking for an alternative, had afforded to criticize the protesters citing their repeated calls and blocking traffic, though at the same time joining the bandwagon of abolishing pork barrel if not distributing arable lands such as Hacienda Luisita. And lately, contrary to their 'opposition to mismanagement of government budget' like the Pork Barrel, they had applauded about the benefits brought by the unpopular "Disbursement Acceleration Program" (DAP) due to the infrastructure being done and scholarships being given to, not knowing that it is the same program that paid senators in exchange for making former Chief Justice Corona guilty during the impeachment trial, so is in paying landlords as 'compensation' yet still not been given to the tillers the contested lands despite payment.
And in speaking of joining in bandwagons, most of these "thinking people" whom these days trying to defend the President and his clique are also the same people whom afford to criticize the President after watching a video courtesy of sites like PinoyMonkeyPride and, that they even afford to criticize the late Corazon Aquino for her brownouts and capitulation to foreign interests (especially debt peonage), while praising Ferdinand Marcos with his series of contributions (like infrastructure) in spite of his corrupt practises, and not knowing that his son, BongBong, had also been implicated in the PDAF scam in which he tries to deny with. 
Or you even afford to say "fuck the system" yet failing to give a concrete solution other than "the self", that you insist just individual initative (and to take pride of) yet at the same time currying anyone to act as a community, how contradicting though isn't it? 

So, in citing contradictions these people failed to handle, then where's their reformism and their call for major change if they fail to see clearly such as a corrupt, exploiting system in spite of clamoring for reforms and at the same time making slander towards those whom taking direct action? Of shifting support from one to another despite sharing the same corruption and misgovernance being representatives of the rotten order? Actually, it is strange so to speak the changing stances of these Counterreactionary groupuscle. That other than opportunism they used the situation in order to defend the status quo and at the same time introducing 'reforms' such as those of third way inclination. Some would dare to organize protests yet calling it as non-partisan, they tend to invoke "National Unity" all the time, yet they have no concrete program to advance their supposed goals and aspirations unlike those of their adversaries such as the Left; but in general, they have a disdain for protest as they favor "peaceful" stances again from the use of social media to "critical collaboration" with the status quo no matter how repressive the latter is just to advance specific goals of their so-called "movement."
And since some had afforded to 'march', with or without a specific program of action, a road to their causes, why most tend to limit in the comfort of their swivel chairs via social media or even commentaries through the paper without any immersion or direct dialouge with the laboring people? Much more in reducing solutions that require popular participation to those of "personal initiative"? The French Revolution, the Paris Commune, the revolution of 1896 isn't out of personal initiatives, that Georges Danton, a writer and a lawyer, had joined and even led in various marches, so was Jose Rizal whom also joined protest actions in Spain not just limiting himself in writing a novel and in papers like La Solidaridad.

Personally, in reading comments coming from certain people in social media lies both consideration and disgust. Considering that they are petit bourgeois with a smattering of idealism as most had themselves chose to escape from reality and be contented in their tangible illusion that made those whom are enlightened ought to educate and understand the present, inconvenient situation; while another comes antagonism towards them knowing that their words are pointing against those whom are against the system. Yes, quite natural though to see radicals, even yours truly to express antagonism knowing that their statements opposing the protests and calls also meant supporting the status quo, especially that they offer no alternative than those of "personal initative." But how about those whom are entirely apathetic? Of disregarding the inconvenient reality altogether just for a long term comfort trying to keep with? Of spending a large chunk of salary for a party at Tomas Morato? That ain't hardship as what these truly apathetic whiners say! And these counterreactionaries, treating social issue sarcastically, justifying apathy with a smattering of reason, self-proclaiming as the silent majority that actually rallying on the side of the rotting status quo, failed to make clear their stand that somehow resorted to what they called 'unjust attacks' and their own words as 'sensible memes' by those whom defending their cause.
Or, do they need to study La Revolution Française? Their words mimic the second estate and its desire to keep the status quo while at the same time issuing 'reforms' that had actually mocked those of the third estate. Few would dare to become like Mirabeaus or Neckers, but most are rather showed disdain for the majority's call for an overhaul of the society to rid off of its rottenness not just because they are dirty like the typical Sans Culotte or too passionate like Danton or Robespierre, but also a hindrance to their privileges.

"to gain you is no profit, to lose you is no loss."

Blame as you wish, heckle as you want that made radicals afford to counter you with their statements, but in the end these radicals, protesters so to speak, rather enjoy the shower of the water cannon and showed their valour in spite of the pain being inflicted by the policemen, where were you at that time on the first place? Sitting pretty? Taking pride in achievements such as your so-called talents? Medals and trophies, salaries and your so-called standard of living? Well, sorry to say, but your words about change isn't really change (individual change) but a reaction to their yearness called change (societal change). People who had marched, endured the heat and the sudden fire of the water cannons are the ones whom also cleaned their clothes, studied their lessons, worked hard for their daily bread, and yet still affected by endless crisis, these are still victims of the current rotten structure hidden beneath edifices of glass and steel and pseudo-achievements, and willing to break the cycle by changing the structure to the extent of sacrificing their lives knowing that "they're going to die fighting". Counterreactionaries fail to see inconvenient reality despite trying to observe, they yearned for change yet it contradicts with keeping their privileges hence they merely parrot the word 'change' while actually keeping the status quo "with a fresh coat of paint" called "reforms" and "compromise deals" just to lessen tensions still brewing thanks to corruption, disenfranchisement, and repression.

Whine against the protesters, activists, radicals if you want, but Professor Marx is right that history is all consists of class struggles, or even Pol Pot in regards to your reductionism, generalization, and efforts to write your whinings, for "to gain you is no profit, to lose you is no loss."