WA Delegate (non-executive): The Gülenist Conspiracy of Ketchupland (elected )
Founder: The Noocracy of Fontelian
Today's World Census Report
The Largest Black Market in Sapientia
World Census agents tracked "off the books" deals and handshake agreements in order to study the size of nations' informal economies.
As a region, Sapientia is ranked 2,070th in the world for Largest Black Market.
|1.||The Noocracy of Fontelian||Civil Rights Lovefest||“So much for pathos”|
|2.||The Second August Empire of Zoterik||Father Knows Best State||“Sol Omnibus Lucet”|
|3.||The Gülenist Conspiracy of Ketchupland||Civil Rights Lovefest||“We have no border fence”|
|4.||The Nomadic Peoples of The Malamutes||Corporate Police State||“If you can't run Big Dogs, you'd better stay home. ”|
|5.||The Holy Empire of Tursiaria||Psychotic Dictatorship||“Orantes ad Mare”|
|6.||The Sovereign Community of Delvetia||Compulsory Consumerist State||“In the age of ambition a man's mettle is proven”|
|7.||The Queendom of Running Raccoons||Iron Fist Consumerists||“Ravishing, Repulsive, Redundant”|
|8.||The Republic of Culdrose||New York Times Democracy||“Moderation is the key”|
|9.||The Infected Ileum of Roborussia||Left-Leaning College State||“You gotta make way for the robo superior.”|
|10.||The All Time Sapientia Legend of Chuck Norris Haters||Anarchy||“Sapientia Uber Alles! Veritas Vos Liberabit!”|
- : Pygmyraptor ceased to exist.
- : The Republic of Culdrose arrived from Osiris.
- : The Republic of Culdrose ceased to exist.
- : Onikua ceased to exist.
- : The Second August Empire of Zoterik created a new regional poll: "I scream, you scream, Max Barry screams for ice cream.".
- : 1golden retriever ceased to exist.
- : The Second August Empire of Zoterik updated the World Factbook entry.
- : The Second August Empire of Zoterik created a new regional poll: "Let's Go Exploring".
- : Xubra ceased to exist.
- : Mcvegas ceased to exist.
Sapientia Regional Message Board
Happy belated birthday, PT!
So PT, what are your thoughts on your President's recent actions towards the USA and his slight pivot towards China?
Well I am not an expert or even that much learned on power plays and international relations, but from my understanding, this is Duterte's nationalistic vigour working to attempt to break from the West - allegedly because of wanting to pursue a more "independent" foreign policy and/or because of disagreements over human rights (the disagreement being whether or not people deserve human rights).
I'd hate to make conspiracy theories and speculate, but there have already been negotiations. The Defense Secretary has already met with the Russians and Duterte is frankly totally quiet about the South China Sea, as well as ceasing all joint patrols with the US to "avoid angering neighbors and sparking war."
The optimist in me is hoping that this is just Duterte taking advantage of the fact that he's a prized possession now: China needs the Philippines to back down, the US needs the Philippines because we are its backdoor to China. Russia, idk.
But while Duterte attempts to play politics abroad, over 3000 people have already been killed in drug operations and by vigilantism. A majority of Filipinos still believe that this is a good thing. "Adik lang naman sila. (They're just addicts) What do they contribute to society?" And Duterte is still trying to consolidate as much power as he can. What's stopping the strongman, surprisingly enough, are a few strong, progressive women - two senators and the vice president - as well as a handful of people in Congress (the smallest minority group in Congress in Philippine history) as well as a few groups (the Commission on Human Rights and the Church are the most vocal) who still remember that the 1987 Constitution was made to make sure that the people cannot be subjugated by one man who thinks he's a modern messiah.
I really appreciate the insightful response! So what are the main checks to Duterte's power in the Constitution? What point is too far for him to go?
Unfortunately legitimate opposition is pretty much difficult to find in our situation. Congress has a "super-majority" at the moment, with many congressmen jumping ship the moment Duterte was elected. Even the main opposition party, the Liberal Party, joined the ranks of the majority coalition and now make up more than 2/3rds the population of Congress. The main holdout, we thought, would be in the Senate.
However, the main opposition Senator is now under attack from a witch-hunt aimed at halting her investigation into the president's role in the EJKs (extra-judicial killings). Even her personal life is undet attack. The Senate just recently voted her out of her chairmanship of the Senate Committee on Justice, with the Senate voting 16-4 in favor of replacing her.
Any checks into Duterte's power lies in the constitution. However, these checks are now very very fragile, as there has been word circulating about attempting to change the constitution to give the president more power - making dictatorship "constitutional," giving the president both executive and judicial powers and God-knows how much more.
Polls on Duterte's support with the public are still out there and no results are out yet. I am legitimately scared of an eventual return to the dark age of the dictatorship that gripped our country only 30 years ago because the Philippine doomsday clock is looming ever closer to midnight.
What's worse is how divided he has made Filipinos. People praise and criticize him at the same time and ad hominem attacks are everywhere. I'm currently fighting a social media-war with my grade school teacher and I'm constantly being thrown accusation of pseudo-intellectualism, elitism and the like.
Whatever our differences are, dear Sapientia, I will always be an advocate of the kind of liberty that the first Filipino revolutionaries once had: liberty from oppression, from fear and, most importantly, liberty from the idea that one man is enough to "save" a nation that doesn't need saving to begin with. The rhetoric I see used by Duterte during and after the elections, I see with one of your presidential candidates and I am legitimately terrified for the world.
Duterte is a corrupt, anti-poor, anti-Filipino, authoritarian on the brink of declaring himself a dictator and it doesn't bode well for Filipinos. Whatever good he has done will always be outweighed by the bad he has done - the economy (just recently considered as a "bright spot" in the world economy) is on the brink of collapse, law and order is pretty much out the window, our foreign relations are turning to s*** because of our president's lack of diplomatic ability, China is encroaching on our territory, the Filipino people are divided more, any opposition against the president is being whittled down piece by piece, Duterte has surrounded himself with yes-men in his cabinet, the Senate, the Congress and the Supreme Court and more and every day people are dying from people who want to take the law into their own hands and a trigger-happy police force thag thinks they're above the law all because of some self-righteous "crusade" against drugs. All because of one man with an ego the size of the moon who sees himself as perfect and above criticism as well as surrounding himself with a personality cult that sees him as a messiah.
In short, to answer your question: whatever checks and balances we have are eroding more and more each day.
Human rights matter. That's the most important thing I have to say. Human rights protect [i]everyone[/]. Not just criminals. It affords even the poor the due process that seems to be the privilege of the rich. It makes sure everybody is treated as the human beings they are with the dignity they deserve.
I saw on Reuters today that he likens drug users to the Jews in the Holocaust. Is it safe to say that he is essentially likening himself to Hitler and a de facto Dictator now? :\