Mong Palatino

Blogging about the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific since 2004


@mongster is a Manila-based activist, former Philippine legislator, and blogger/analyst of Asia-Pacific affairs.

Archive for August, 2013

Decree 72: Vietnam’s Confusing Internet Law

Saturday, August 31st, 2013

written for The Diplomat Vietnam is often accused of being an enemy of media freedom because of its notorious record of jailing dissident bloggers and blocking social networks. Its new Internet decree, which purportedly contains several provisions that ban the sharing of online news stories, could be added to the list of its crimes against […]

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Rallies and timezones

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

Written for Bulatlat Because of varying time zones, it is almost impossible to organize synchronized global protests. Realtime uprisings in the global village are actually done in a continuum. Let us assume for example that today is the Global Day of Action Against Evil. It is 12 noon in Manila and 1pm in Tokyo but […]

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LGBT Politics in Southeast Asia

Friday, August 23rd, 2013

Written for The Diplomat Is Southeast Asia becoming more tolerant towards its LGBT community? Consider these recent developments in the region: A Singaporean politician admitted on Facebook that he is gay. A Malaysian transgendered person was appointed political secretary in Penang State. Two government ministries in Vietnam and some legislators in Thailand have publicly endorsed […]

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Written for The Diplomat It is common for unpopular governments to be accused by their enemies of committing serious human rights violations such as murder and kidnapping, but it is not often that genocide is included in the charge sheet. Even notorious dictators who are assumed to be guilty of committing the most heinous crimes […]

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Beyond Internet Activism

Saturday, August 17th, 2013

My first column for Bulatlat The opposite of internet activism is not street activism but no-activism. Online petitions and political hashtags are indispensable in the campaign for change while non-action is a convenient option that only serves the interest of status quo. Internet activism is sometimes equated with impotence but at least it exists. There […]

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Will ASEAN Countries Move Their Capitals?

Thursday, August 15th, 2013

Written for The Diplomat If things fall apart and the center cannot hold, will anarchy be unleashed upon the world, as the poet William Butler Yeats famously wrote? Maybe. But there is a less chaotic alternative: Move the center. Several Southeast Asian governments have seriously contemplated the idea of relocating their respective political centers for […]

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Written for The Diplomat Some say a specter is haunting Southeast Asia today: bad neighbors and evil foreigners. For many people in the region, it was the non-locals who caused the biggest tragedies of the year – deadly haze, communal riots, even the problem of rising unemployment. This fear or hatred of the unknown, real […]

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Congress Lobbying

Friday, August 2nd, 2013

Based on my presentation during the Emerging Youth Leaders training at the Asian Institute of Management, July 20, 2013 1. There are lobbyists and there are registered lobbyists. But in the Philippines, there are only lobbyists. Unknown to many, a law was signed in 1957 which was supposed to regulate lobbying in Congress and in […]

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