Three possible official narratives

Narrative one: 21 September is proof that everything in the Philippines is terrible.

Why else would you need an entire day to protest? If everything was going well then people wouldn't find the need to gather in the streets, wave a few placards and shout a bunch of invectives. Instead, here we are, living in a country where everything is going to shit: traffic is bad, politicians are corrupt, television is unimaginative...

But protests are disruptive. We all have something to complain about, but whenever we see a protest on the streets, we don't think of how we're all fucked together, but of how they are fucking our lives up. They're causing traffic, these fucking idiots! So, this one's a masterstroke. A government-designated day where anybody can protest about anything.

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Killing season

Through a viva voce vote - so as to ensure maximum results, perhaps dramatic results, without being held accountable by their constitutents - the Philippine lower house voted to award the Commission of Human Rights a budget of a mere thousand pesos in 2018.

This, after constant attacks from the president, who sees the commission - a government agency mandated to be the watchdog against human rights violations, established by the 1987 Constitution - as a thorn in his campaign against drugs.

That is it. It's killing season.

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Gather the ingredients. They will say pancakes are best when you start from scratch, but you won't always, or ever, have the time to figure out the right proportion of flours, or which flours to get, or what else to throw in. Just get a couple of boxes of pancake mix and you're good to go.

Make the batter. You're not doing it from scratch, so you have instructions from the box to fall back on. Beat two eggs, then add four tablespoons of oil, a cup and a bit of water, and two packs of pancake mix. Or you can mix the order up a bit. Mix the liquids first, then add it to the dry stuff - like those chefs on TV do, with a well in the middle of the bowl of flour. Whatever. It's pancake mix. You'll be hard-pressed to get it wrong.

Add fruits, if desired. Last night you thought of making banana pancakes, but this morning you forgot to mash some bananas up for the batter. But it's not yet too late. Get two bananas, mash them up on your hand, and them smoosh them up to the bowl. Then stir. Then wash your hands.

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Butterflies in my mind

I have collected foreign newspapers since 1998.

As I typed that, I realize how far back that habit has gone. Almost twenty years! More than half my life! What a... sad life it must have been.

I mean, you're probably asking, "why are you collecting newspapers?" I wasn't sure, really. I think it was for the design. I did handwritten newspapers as a kid, after all. Folded sheets of bond paper, fanciful stories which are also grounded in reality, and imagined television schedules, when I was terrible at making up imaginary television shows. I wanted to see how other countries did it.

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You say you want a revolution

The scenario isn't "everything is failing". Not really. This has been pretty consistent throughout the past fourteen months, in bits and spurts, but in recent days there's been an uptick in talk of how a revolution is needed.

A revolution is needed, he says, to ensure that things really change. For the better, he argues. For everyone, he argues.

The assumptions are are in bits and spurts, but there are enough to play connect the dots with. He's old and is near to death. He has nothing to gain. We have to believe him when he says everything he's doing is for all of us, not like, you know, them. You know, them. Those motherfucking idiots, acting like they know everything, with their "values" and "standards" that will never fit with what you believe in. Those idiots, shoving themselves down your throats, supposedly for the better, but really, they're doing it for themselves. They're blocking all the work we do so they can gorge themselves all they want, and then some.

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