August 13-17, 1936

August 15 at Rafferty’s dinner (Grawfus). I sat between Alfonso Sy Cip and Romulo, head of the Herald. Romulo told me of his dramatic defiance of General Wood, when the latter called him on the carpet for the attitude of his paper–(all of which was published in the Herald at the time); of the magnificent impromptu speech by Quezon in defense of my administration at a banker’s dinner in San Francisco. Romulo also said Manuel Roxas is “laying low”; that Quezon was mentioning my name to be first for inscription on the gold plate to be put up at Malacañan (on the first anniversary of the Commonwealth) to commemorate those Americans &c &c–Romulo also remarked: “it would be terrible if the Republicans won the election in the United States.”

Reception at Malacañan this night. As we had dined first at Colonel Garfinkel’s at Fort McKinley, we arrived after the reception line had dissolved and after the Rigodon had been danced. Quezon was in very good form and was pleased to show various improvements he had made in the Palace, which is now lighted by the great chandeliers from the old Ayuntamiento and was cheerfully bright for the first time since the Cimmerian darkness of the Murphy regime. The cabaret downstairs was dreadfully overcrowded. No whiskey was served at the bar. Dancers were streaming with sweat. Traffic, however, was better managed than I have ever seen it, for three different parking places were provided with a telephone to each. The refusal of Quezon to have whiskey and soda served surprised me more than anything I have ever known him to do. It can hardly have been the monastic influence of his predecessor! Anyway it made most of the guests leave early to dash for the Manila Hotel. However, Quezon himself, went to bed at 10:30 so he can’t have cared how early the guests left. Mrs. Quezon appeared, and was very agreeable.

March 31, 1936

Quezon telephoned asking us to the Commencement of the University of the Philippines at 8:15 a.m. I put on gown and hood for the first time since receiving from this University an LL.D. eighteen years ago. The ceremonies were very well run and seemed impressive. Quezon rose and congratulated the cum laude students as they advanced to receive their degrees. I was glad to see the large graduating class of the College of Agriculture. The law school students received most of the applause from the audience, which shows again how little perception people en masse have for real values. For the first time, the graduates in medicine outnumbered the law–65-64! When honorary degrees were given to Dr. Singian and to High Commissioner Murphy, Quezon was asked by Bocobo to make an impromptu speech, which he did, rather haltingly and with an effort–in praise of those two; he also made a handsome reference to myself. The error in the American school of oratory is that it is too fulsome. Evidently Billy Sunday was a typical rouser of pure American vintage. There is now a very strong campaign of flattery by the Filipino orators and press to keep Murphy here. They really like him and can get on with him as High Commissioner. A most difficult post to fill.

Talk with Don Rafael Palma, who said the plans of the new Education Council were to stress primary education so as to make it universal; but, he added, this was chiefly a question of funds. He asked me if I had noticed that at Santo Tomas University Commencement, Quezon was the only one of the recipients of degrees who did not kneel before the Father Rector–thus denying the subordination of State to Church –this explains his having Mrs. Quezon to pin on his cape for him instead of the Archbishop.

Conversation with Father Tamayo who marvelled at Quezon’s remarkable memory of his student days–“he was all alone in Manila when he came from Baler, and I tried to help him.” Later I told this to Quezon and he said: “Father Tamayo saved my life–I was starving and had nowhere to go–he took me in and gave me room and board free.”

Talk with General Reyes over the resistance by the Moros in Lanao against registration for military service. He regretted that the law had not contained a provision permitting the President to suspend it in certain provinces, commenting that: “we don’t want these Moros and Ifugaos anyway.” He added that the drawing by lot for conscription was a revival of Spanish days. He himself in the old era had not been drawn for the Spanish Army because his family was influential.

An article in a morning paper showed the alleged attitude of Lanao Moros against conscription:

“MORO PRINCESS BACK FOR VISIT–Princess reveals determination of her people to reject soldiering.

“Corregidor, March 27, 1936. Moro Princess Juliana Malawani, niece of Datu Cali of Lanao, a visitor to the island, revealed in an interview with the Tribune correspondent here that if the government forces the Lanao Moros to register for military training, they will fight to the last, according to a letter to her of another uncle, Datu Ganooki.”

I told Reyes I thought it was a mistake, anyway to arm these Moros–they might desert en masse with their arms.

Talks later with Unson, Garfinkel and Santos on this subject. General impression is that the Moros oppose everything:–cedula, abolition of the Bureau of Non-Christian Tribes and conscription. No use dallying with them. My impression is that the Filipinos are aching to get at them. They have been especial pets of the Government and are spoiled. Wood was largely responsible for this. The situation resembles that of the Apaches under Geronimo.

The speech of Roxas at the Commencement of the University of the Philippines was far above my expectation–he displayed perfect use of English and great mental powers. His voice is unfortunately too high, although through an amplifier perhaps, this is not so apparent. He uses no gestures except emphatic nods. If only he had a little of the English reticence and hesitation, I should say he is (mentally) the most convincing orator I have heard. Quezon expressed himself as thinking that Roxas should not have asked a question in his address–i.e., “what can the future of the Philippines he?” without answering the question himself; but as a matter of fact Roxas did answer this by discarding for the Philippines all permanent protection from other powers, and urging the Filipinos to prepare to defend themselves.

In the afternoon with the Government Survey Board. Unson, Trinidad and Paez–am rather embarrassed by Quezon having attached me to their board. Unson was discursive, with almost unintelligible use of English; Paez was completely silent; Trinidad was skeptical and coldly incisive. A good deal of laughter at La Comedie Humaine as exemplified by Department Secretaries and Bureau Chiefs. The board was evidently rather discouraged as to the outlook. A questionnaire had been sent out to all Bureau Chiefs and the only Bureau which has answered was that of the Weather! Trinidad has found out that 8,000,000 pesos is owing to the government from landowners on the Cadastral Survey, and 5,000,000 pesos in irrigation works. The latter had probably better be written off. Similar experience was had, I believe, in Siam, South Africa and the United States. At the end of the session, Unson said most kindly to me: “This makes us rather home-sick–because it reminds us of your days.”

February 7, 1936

An hour in the morning at the office with Manuel Concepcion, in my time Secretary of the Philippine National Bank. He told me of his father’s conviction by the Courts (as President of that bank) and his own sentence by a divided, and perhaps influenced court; [Johnson and Malcolm seem to have railroaded him] –aided by bed-ridden Chief Justice Araullo, who should not have written the opinion. Manuel is now engaged in placer mining in Abra, and says he takes out enough gold for his living expenses every year and added: “I don’t need a Government position.” Interesting talk on the currency situation. He advocates fixing the ratio between gold and silver, and proposes dissociating the Philippines from the American dollar. Says inflation, and further devaluation of the dollar in the United States is imminent. Believes they mean to raise the price of gold to 45. Says Warner, Barnes & Co. are instructed to invest their cash in Benguet Consolidated for a big rise. Thinks Philippine currency should be based on silver, and sufficient gold dollars held only for all foreign exchange.

He commented how Quezon is rising rapidly through good government.

Had an appointment with Quezon in the afternoon, but he did not return until very late from his official visit to the English Admiral and went straight to bed–exhausted. Garfinkel said Quezon had ordered a launch the duplicate of the Admiral’s, for official visits; that he went aboard the yacht Yolanda and at once wished to have a ship like that; he enquired of the Captain who told him of Lady Yuill’s which was for sale at Glasgow. Wishes to take it up through the British Consulate. Florence Edwards has seen this yacht and says it is “wonderful.”

Osmeña is broke, and is worried about the behavior of his sons by his first marriage. Osmeña’s present wife, however, is a rich woman (Limjap).

January 27, 1936

Back again at the office after first illness I have ever had in the Philippines. Garfinkel told of Quezon’s visit to Tarlac and Pangasinan; what intelligent interest he showed in military maneuvers and in the equipment of General Smith. Garfinkel expressed his pleasure in the present great change of heart of the American military towards Quezon –how they were beginning to understand his intelligence and powerful grasp of affairs “and” he added “you know Quezon doesn’t like the army”!! Also said the American “Old Timers” were letting up on their incessant grumbling against Quezon –“as they had always grumbled against every Governor General.” He said the army (and “Old Timers”?) had not believed up to the very day of inauguration that the Commonwealth Government would ever come into being. This, of course, was wishful thinking. Said Quezon had accomplished more in one month than Governor General had ever done in one year.

January 25, 1936

Quezon off to Pangasinan with his a.d.c. Colonel Garfinkel –to meet General Smith’s army on its practice march to Dagupan. He is also probably picking up first hand information concerning Friar Land estates on his week-end trips.

Excellent article by Vicente Albano Pacis in the Herald, calling on Filipinos to show more faith in themselves, and greater resolution in meeting the coming independence.

January 3, 1936

Nothing doing at office; Quezon sick in Malacañan –should return to Baguio. Garfinkel said Quezon had a “heavy night” at the Casino Español –but Quezon does not drink. Food causes his upsets. Saw Vamenta formerly Attorney of Department of Mindanao and Sulu; he told me Osmeña was anxious to do something for Governor Frank Carpenter who is now in a soldiers home in Massachusetts. Said when the Sultan of Sulu signed the treaty with us renouncing his rights of sovereignty (in my time) Carpenter had told him (Vamenta) that if they were Englishmen their future would be assured, but that “republics were ungrateful” &c.

P.M. Golf at Caloocan with Doria. Talked with Consul General Blunt who commented on Quezon’s quickness of thought and decision –said Quezon was so reasonable –he could even take another’s opinion.

January 2, 1936

At office. Quezon’s bureau filled with candidates for the Court of Appeals. Visit from Judge Jaronilla who explained his own position: he had been Attorney General when he gave a decision that the “Board of Control” was unconstitutional –which opinion was sustained by the Philippine Supreme Court and by the United States Supreme Court. He was afterwards nominated for the Philippine Supreme Court on Wood’s recommendation. Nomination was sent to the United States Senate and not acted upon (Jaronilla says due to Quezon) –since then he has been uniformly loyal to Quezon– voted for him this year. Says he has been “punished” enough, and now should go on the Court of Appeals instead of being passed over in favour Judges whom he himself as Attorney General had promoted to the bench. Was trying to see Quezon. I told him how very strongly Quezon felt on the issue of the board of Control, and told him there was little hope. Tried to get Garfinkel to push him in to Quezon.

At night, reception at Casino Español for Quezon. He looked very smart in full dress with a Spanish decoration. He said he had put out a statement in the press assuring Americans that in general they were not to lose their positions in the new government; repeated how the Bulletin editorial in behalf of retaining American Supreme Court Justices had induced him to accept their resignations at once. Complimented Colin Hoskins on his paper on the organization of National Economic planning and said “We can use him” (Hoskins). Said he had been sick all the afternoon but was very cordial and pleasant.

December 14, 1935

Saturday –Quezon away at Canlubang, presumably staying with the Ehrmans. Garfinkel, Vargas and Nick are all dashing about trying to meet the President’s sudden decision to change his office to that formerly occupied by Secretary Franks; they are also pushing work on a new office to be called the library in Malacañan Palace.

Bridge with Zeitlin and Colonel Lim at Pedro Guevara’s house. Pedro told me that if a vote were taken in the Philippines on the proposal he made as Resident Commissioner for a permanent Protectorate by the United States, he would win. Thinks it will come about, anyway.

December 13, 1935

Interview with Charles Franks on reorganization. Talk with Colonel Garfinkel who pointed out how unused Quezon was to executive work. Said that today is the first time the President has been in his Malacañan office for ten days, and that, as a.d.c., he was not allowed to make appointments for him because Quezon wanted to be free. I saw the President who told me he was to appoint the three ex-Secretaries of Finance as a Committee on Reorganization of the Government (Barretto, Singson & Unson), and that he wished me to work with them. He then took me over the Palace, pointing out how his library was to be formed by throwing the small office and bedroom into one. We discussed putting the Spanish paintings back in Malacañan. He looked ill and worn out.

Golf with Doria at Wack-Wack, and a cocktail party at Hoskins where we met several of the Marsman group.