Thursday, June 22, 2006

Litmus test for an ideology

Yesterday, Liberal International, the worldwide organization of liberals, began its 176th Executive Committee meeting here in Manila. Well, actually its in Pasay City, at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC). Of course, Drilon wants to avoid holding it in the City of Manila.

For all intents and purposes, this is my litmus test for the Liberal Democratic ideology. Gathered on the soil of my beloved country are the leaders of worldwide liberalism. These are the people who, (supposedly) more than any political force in the world, are at the forefront of the promotion, development and defense of the values that define liberal democracy: freedom of speech, expression, religion and creed, as well as that essential core concept that is truly the mark of a liberal, which is the respect for and appreciation of opinions and ideas contrary to the one espoused by one's self.

CALD has already gravely disappointed me. In one sense, I understand why the region's foremost organization for liberalism and democracy did so badly on so simple (relatively speaking, compared to the other things faced by CALD and its member parties in the region) an issue. But they are the regional leaders of liberal democracy. Even without the foreign equivalent of the LP's Basic Orientation on Liberal Democracy (BOLD) seminar, they should know the basic principles and protocols of the ideology they supposedly adhere to.

Drilon's people have, of course, done all that they can to keep us away from the delegates. But surely they are all aware of the current situation of the LP. As befits political leaders, I am sure that they are looking for information on this issue. Even without any countermove on our part, there should be at the very least an attempt among LI leaders to get the "other side of the story."

They may not be aware of it, and they may even not care, but I have a microscope aimed at the leaders and members of LI. How they act with regard to the LP situation now that they are here will be a crucial factor in answering several "Questions to Life" that I have been asking since last year.

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