Lawmakers, lawbreakers

President Benigno Aquino III delivers the 2011 State of the Nation Address (SONA) to a joint session of the Congress of the Philippines.
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The conventional wisdom is that the Philippines has good, even great laws, but that the problem is in the implementation, which is done either badly or not at all. The country, so say the conditional and eternal optimists, would otherwise be an earthly paradise via legislation.

But anyone who’s been following the decisions of the Supreme Court should have reason enough to question the validity of that claim. In its most recent rulings, the Court was practically warning the citizenry to scrutinize every major piece of legislation ground out by the Congressional lawmaking mill—they’re likely to be constitutionally flawed.

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Winners and losers

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BENIGNO AQUINO III has been in triumphalist mode since 2010 when he handily won the Presidential elections. Succeeding events since have not moved him from that state.

The results of the 2013 mid-term elections have given him something more to crow about, and even more so the 7.8 percent growth of the economy for the first quarter of 2013 which surpassed the International Monetary Fund prediction of 6 percent.

Forget about the power problems in Mindanao, and the increase in the incidence of hunger among the poor, whose legions have not changed for decades. Forget about the high levels of unemployment.

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