Former senator FRANCISCO TATAD served in the Philippine Cabinet for ten years, in the Legislature for fifteen years, and in journalism and humanitarian work for more than half of his close to sixty years in public life. As presidential spokesman and information secretary, he accompanied President Marcos on his state visit to China in 1975; as Senate majority leader, he co-sponsored the Senate resolution of concurrence in the ratification of the Visiting Forces Agreement between the Philippines and the US in 1999.

Retooling the “debates”

Since the 90-day official presidential campaign period kicked off in February, Filipinos have been treated to a series of presidential “debates.” These are but media forums, rather than “debates,” strictly speaking, for a “debate,” as we know it, is a formal public discussion in which two opposing sides argue against each other the validity or invalidity of a particular proposition.

A watershed moment for Filipinos

Like Cardinal Advincula’s recognition of the “martyrdom” of Gomburza, such a vigorous reaffirmation of Church teaching on politics by the shepherds, pastors and consecrated women of the Philippine church could yet be another watershed moment for Filipinos.

The quintessential F. Sionil Jose

On January 6 this year, Francisco Sionil Jose, novelist, journalist, social and political critic, and Philippine national artist for literature, died at 97. His death has irreparably affected the nation’s literary, social, cultural and political scene.

The sins of the father

I do not see Marcos’s enemies slowing down on their attacks on the Marcoses. Responsible third parties will have to intervene to raise the level of the debate. But if there is no chance of this, Marcos may have to return the favor of his adversaries. His retrainers could begin asking questions not necessarily about Leni, but about the real forces (seen or unseen) trying to move this contest.