Mong Palatino

blogging about the philippine left and southeast asian politics since 2004


@mongster is a manila-based activist, former philippine legislator, and blogger/analyst of asia-pacific affairs.

Arroyo, Aquino and the Left

Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

Written for Bulatlat 1. Did the Left support Gloria Arroyo in 2001 and 2004? The Left was part of Edsa Dos uprising and support for Arroyo was incidental since she was at that time the Vice President who stood to benefit from Estrada’s ouster. In 2004, the Left didn’t openly endorse any presidential candidate. It’s […]

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Philippine politics 1969-2009

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

The year 1969 – Gloria Diaz was crowned Miss Universe and Neil Armstrong became the first man to walk on the moon. During the same year, Ferdinand Marcos was reelected as president of the republic and the communist New People’s Army was founded in Tarlac. How did Philippine politics evolve in the past 40 years? […]

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“When I was still in the Guest House, I asked for the logs which listed those who had visited President Marcos. I compared them with those visiting President Aquino. They were the same people – they came from the same companies, shared the same business views, the same mindset, and they went to the same […]

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Mensahe ng pasasalamat

Monday, July 5th, 2010

Batay sa talumpating binigkas sa anibersaryo ng Kabataan Partylist, Hunyo 19, 2010 na ginanap sa UP Diliman Kolehiyo ng Edukasyon Maraming salamat sa ating dalawang emcee. Si Lee, mga kaibigan, ang nagdisenyo, naglay-out ng ating mga logo at iba pang animasyon na ginamit noong kampamya. Salamat Lee at Mabuhay ka! Sa lahat ng fans ng […]

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Poverty and elections

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

The poor are glamorized victims during elections. They become VIPs – Very Imporant Poor – as candidates try to woo their support. Election then becomes a contest between politicians offering the best pro-poor platform. But platforms are not enough. Often the winners are those who distributed cash gifts and other small value items. During elections, […]

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From womb to tomb

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Local politicians often complain about the duties they are expected to accomplish as public servants. Professor Alex Brillantes explains the situation at the local level: ‘For many people, local governments ARE the government. They are the frontline, the firing line. People go to them for help, advice and assistance from womb to tomb.’ And as […]

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Sunday, May 30th, 2010

Part 1: Senate Race – A Virtual Campaign Part 2: Burgers, Fries, Coke, and Politicians Part 3: Opinion Polls – “A Science without a Scientist” Remember Ramon Magsaysay’s famous line – “Can we defend it in Plaza Miranda?” There was a time when politicians were capable and willing to engage in public debates, often in […]

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Last Philippine President?

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Written for The Diplomat…. Barring any unforeseen events or extra-legal surprises over the coming days and weeks, Sen. Benigno Simeon ‘Noynoy’ Cojuangco Aquino III of the Liberal Party will likely be proclaimed the next president of the Republic of the Philippines. Noynoy topped the exit polls and unofficial canvassing of the May 10 elections and, […]

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Flashpoints: Philippines and Thailand

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

I’ve written several articles for The Diplomat about the Philippine 2010 elections. Some of them have been reposted in this blog. In the past week, I submitted these short election updates: 1. So Far, Not so Bad 2. Disenfranchised Voters 3. Philippine Elections: The Good, the Bad, and the Funny 4. Replace or Retain Voting […]

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Price of freedom

Sunday, May 9th, 2010

…written in 2007 If you believe in democracy, then vote on May 14. If you want deserving candidates to win, then encourage others to vote as well. If you want to remove incompetent leaders, then volunteer to guard the counting of votes. This is our duty as responsible citizens. Our vigilance is the price of […]

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