Tuesday, June 30, 2009

TIM pulls out from SMARTMATIC, endangers Philippines first automated elections in 2010

With Total Information Management Corp. (TIM) pulling out from the consortium built with Smartmatic, hope for the Philippines holding its first nationwide automated elections in 2010 has been dashed.

TIM is the Filipino partner of Smartmatic, fulfilling a requirement for foreign corporations setting up businesses in the Philippines.

TIM president Jose Mari Antuñez told him that TIM was pulling out of the partnership with Smartmatic, citing unspecified “irreconcilable differences.” A source privy to the Comelec’s automation efforts said that lack of funds and unpreparedness prompted TIM’s withdrawal.

Smartmatic cannot form a new joint venture with another company because it is against national procurement laws.

The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of compromising his role in the initiative, said that TIM needed an additional P300 million to meet its P700-million share as a partner.

The source noted that TIM could easily enter into a loan to obtain this amount “since the contract is already a sure shot, which makes us wonder what ‘irreconcilable differences’ mean.”

The Smartmatic-TIM group was awarded the contract after a month-long bidding process that saw seven election companies compete for the P11.3-billion project.

The group made a P7.2-billion bid and won the right to lease 82,200 counting machines that would allow the Comelec to complete the canvassing of votes in two days instead of weeks under the manual system.

Senator Richard Gordon, author of RA 9369 or the Amended Automated Election Law and leading advocate for modernized elections in the Philippines, said that the pull out of TIM from Smartmatic at such a crucial hour was suspicious.

"Is there somebody forcing partnership with Smartmatic or is this a deliberate attempt to torpedo the automation process so there will be cheating as usual?” asked Gordon, who has been vocal on his desire for poll automation to happen in next year’s polls.

He said that prior to TIM’s pullout, there was a public relations campaign to oppose the project.

He said that this latest development seemed to show that “some people are playing with the fate of democracy in our country.”

“There is a group in Comelec (Commission on Elections) that doesn’t want automation. It must be too powerful ... The government is too weak. It has no moral and legal stamina to do, implement what it should implement,” Gordon told reporters.

“I will be devastated if full automation will not push through. I might call a blue ribbon hearing on this matter,” he said, adding that the failure of the project would mean a violation of the law.

“There is a mandate that we have to go automation. There are many Pandora’s boxes that will be opened if it does not happen,” he said, speaking in English and Pilipino.

“It appears that there is no intention to push this through. Maybe they are following the administration threat that it would not happen.”

The thing that is on my mind right now is that the Philippines' last hope for clean and credible elections in 2010 may also be dead -- just like my father.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Can I really make a difference?

Will all the blogging for change and rallying for change really matter?

Or have we really reached a point when drastic and forceful action must be undertaken in order to bring about the change that this country needs?

Are there any real Filipino revolutionaries out there who haven't sold their souls and turned protests into money making rackets in one way or the other?

Are there any real leftists, rightists, centrists? Is there any real ideology for a common good that is being acted upon and brought into the realm of actual practice?

I am really bored with Philippine politics right now.

Moreover, I want to kick Jun Lozada's face in. Why? Isa siya sa mga nakinabang sa kabulukan ng sistema, ngayon pumopormang parang santo't bayani. Jun, huwag ka nang epal, manahimik ka na lang.

Sure, there's going to be another rally against Charter Change tomorrow. Hurrah! But I don't think I'll be joining another farce.

The thing is, I don't think people can credibly protest Charter Change issues until we're all fairly certain what the real issues are in the first place. Can the masses understand anything beyond Charter Change equals Gloria Forever? Or are issues just being created in order for some politicians to have a cause to use for grandstanding?

If you want a real discussion on charter change, I suggest you just pick one article in the constitution that you want changed and let's discuss that.

You want a shift in the form of government? Okay, let's discuss why a parliamentary system is a bad idea especially in a country where most politicians cannot be trusted to make a decision for their constituents that will actually benefit them.

You want to give foreigners the right to own land? Okay, let's discuss why it is a bad idea to give foreigners the right to own land at a time when we can't even defend our seas and outlying islands from what amounts to foreign invasion. I think changing this article in the consitution will only benefit the landed or those who have land to sell. I don't. In reality, if the cost of the land I actually inherited from my father increases, I will be hard pressed to come up with the real estate taxes and the land isn't exactly an asset as it does not generate income for me -- it is where I live.

You want term extensions for all elected officials? Okay, show me first what you'v done with your term and then tell me if you deserve a longer term.

Let's not talk about charter change at all, not until every voting age citizen can pass a certifying test that they understand what the constitution is really about.

My father just died today

This is just a short entry to mark the passing of my father.

He was born in 1927 and grew up in an era where he had to go through the uncertainty and devastation of Manila during World War II.

He was a tough man and he made a lot of tough choices. He took care of a wife and 5 children, providing for them as best he can and in best way that he knew how.

Philippine presidential candidates ad misspending

Senator Manny Villar, Senator Mar Roxas, Senator Loren Legarda, and Vice President Noli De Castro are touted by survey organizations as the most popular choices for Presidential candidates in 2010.

One factor that has helped them quite a bit is that they are also the biggest spenders on TV ads.

In previous posts, I urged people not to vote for these candidates as President because they are violating the Fair Elections Act even as the Commission on Elections continues to bury its head in the sand -- refusing to stop the obvious violations.

In addition to this, I'd like everyone to consider this idea: What if instead of spending money on TV advertisements, these candidates just spent their money helping people.

Senator Manny Villar has spent P321.4 million on TV ads where most of the ads show him claiming to have helped OFWs come home or helped people buy their own homes by selling low cost housing. The central message of the TV ads is that he is helping the poor because he was once a poor man.

The thing is, if he really wanted to help the poor, he could have just spent the P321 Million on stuff like plane tickets for OFWs who had suffered abuse in foreign countries. The cost of a plane ticket from Riyadh to Manila is...., 321 million could buy XXX

Mar Roxas, who has used up P256.7 million.

In third place is Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay, whose city has spent P115.1 million on advertisements featuring his achievements.

In fourth slot is Vice President Noli de Castro, whose Pag-Ibig Fund Corp. has paid P45.8 million for TV advertisements showing him urging people to avail themselves of cheap housing loans.

He is followed by Sen. Loren Legarda, who has spent P42 million on environmental protection advertising.

Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro Jr. is featured in a National Disaster Coordinating Council ad that seeks to promote disaster preparedness and awareness among the people.

The council, which Teodoro chairs, has used up P30.7 million.

Opposition Sen. Panfilo Lacson spent the smallest amount of P22 million for his anti-corruption advocacy. He has quit the presidential race for lack of money.

Villar is a self-made billionaire, making his fortune in real estate. The Senate is investigating him for alleged conflict of interest and unethical conduct.

He spent P104.8 million last month, P75.7 million in April, P29.6 million in February, P32.5 million in January, P19.6 million in December, P22.7 million in November, and P36.4 million in October. No spending was reported for March.

Roxas, on the other hand, was born to wealth. He belongs to the family that owns the Araneta Center commercial complex in Cubao, Quezon City.

He spent P39.3 million in May, P114.2 million in April, P32 million in February, and P71.3 million in January.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Philippine government must step up defenses against deadlier strain of A(H1N1)

As of yesterday, the number of people infected with the A(H1N1) flu virus in the Philippines reached 604 and at least one death was recorded.

The fact that a couple of people infected with the dreaded flu virus was able to enter the Philippines and infect other people says a lot about the country's ill-preparedness in dealing with pandemics.

Department of Education Secretary Jesli Lapus decried the repeated suspension of classes and said that A(H1N1) virus was just like sore eyes. This eschews the fact that the cramped and often unhygenic situation in most public schools in the Philippines would be an ideal ground zero for an escalated spread of the disease.

Public schools in the Philippines often cram up 45 to over a 100 students in one classroom and with just one toilet for every 151 students.

The list of Filipino public school vulnerabilities when it comes to health care are enormous.

Just consider that 21% of schoolchildren are malnourished; 11.4% of school children aged 6-12 years old suffer from iodine deficiency; 37.4 of school children aged 6-12 years old suffer from Iron Deficiency Anemia; 36% suffer from Vitamin A Deficiency; 67% suffer intestinal helminthiasis or worm infestation; 97% have dental caries; 6.23% have hearing impairment; and 2.54 – have visual impairment.

Their state of nourishment makes them vulnerable to diseases and if they do contract an infection, access to a physician is virtually nil.

There is just 1 medical officer for every 80,000 pupils, 1 school dentist for every 20,000 pupils and 1 school nurse for every 5,000 pupils.

Senator Richard Gordon, the author of the Health and Education Acceleration Program bill intended to upgrade academic facilities as well as provide better health care for public school students, pointed out that in the current state that public schools are in, it would be better to keep schools closed until the government is better prepared to respond to contingencies that may follow.

In reaction to Department of Education Secretary Jesli Lapuz' statement that classes should not be suspended again, Gordon issued a statement at the weekly Kapihan sa Senado yesterday:

"It is not the call of the Dept. of Education. It’s not the call of Malacanang. It is the call of DOH, consulting the World Health Organization, if it is safe to allow our children to go to school. It cannot be cavalierly said by the Department of Education na parang sore eyes lang yan dahil may namamatay dito eh.

"I don’t think swine flu at the moment is serious, unless mahina ang constitution nung taong tinamaan at hindi siya nagpatingin sa dalubhasang doktor. There are already flu shots available. Nevertheless we should already be practicing our contingency plans in the event that we encounter a stronger strain of the A(H1N1) flu virus.

"This will be something similar like a fire drill, but certain elements of it have to be practiced everyday -- like proper hygiene.

"Let’s find out if we can make it happen. Let’s learn from it right now, rather than learn as we die."

Orgy results in death of Pinoy model

18-year-old Filipino model Benjamin Peralta allegedly fell to his death from Unit 1 Penthouse of Tower B of Victoria Towers in the village of West Triangle at dawn Wednesday.

His body was found sprawled on the ledge of the sixth story.

Chief Inspector Benjamin Elenzano, chief of the homicide unit of the Quezon City Police District, said they were still waiting for the autopsy result that would determine how Peralta died exactly.

“Initial investigation showed that he was hurled or pushed to the glass window by a strong force that smashed the glass,” Elenzano said.

He quoted the victim’s girlfriend, Vanessa Enomoto, as saying she had seen the group engaged in wild parties before.

The group refers to Peralta and his companions at the penthouse unit who were identified as Ryan Lalin, Antonio Peña Jr., R. A. Carlos and Lucky Mercado.

“The people in the unit could have used ecstasy and the party of sex orgy went out of control that led to the death of the victim,” Elenzano said.

Officer on case, Police Officer 2 Rodel Tumangday, said they have been looking for the unit’s owner, a certain Arturo Peña Jr.

“Based on the statements of the security guards, he was at his unit before the body of the victim was found,” Tumangday said.

(sourced from Inquirer.net)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Querubin's minions hack Dona Victorina blog

(Dona Victorina was hacked after posting the entry titled 'Querubin for Senator?... Quid pro Querubin. Perhaps the truth stung Colonel Ariel Querubin so badly, they just had to find someone to
hack the blog and take it down.

I wonder which of the many things said against Querubin hurt most? The fact that it was said that he has more than one wife or the fact it was said that someone is funding his campaign so that they can have a puppet in the senate?

Personally, I don't think people will vote for Querubin as Senator. For one, this soldier betrayed the very Constitution he swore an oath to protect and now he's running for a seat in the senate, to do what? What does he know about the legislative process? What makes him think he can contribute anything to the legislature? He's running for a seat in the senate, all for the wrong reasons and why should anyone vote for him?)

Querubin for Senator?... Quid pro Querubin
By Rain Barnido
Originally posted at www.donavictorina.blogspot.com

There is Mar Roxas with his multimillion media exposure that includes a padyak, paiyak-iyak and pamanhikan. There is Manny Villar, and his OFWs. There is Loren Legarda back to her sinta days. All ultra-rich politicians who are investing for 2010. They obviously can afford it. Then there is Ariel Querubin.The proliferation and density of tarpaulins bearing the image and likeness of one Ariel Querubin in Las Pinas, Paranaque and Makati (and reportedly in Ilocos Norte and Sur, Zamboanga del Norte and Sur) has led radio commentator Jake Maderazo to ask,
“Where did he get the money?

Why so many?

Doesn’t he know that the sheer numbers of these tarps make him look like a trapo?

“Well, we at Victorina would like to know, too. I, for one, would like to know how he can launch a multimedia campaign when his wife is apparently asking for support for his family needs from some
senators?How does a Marine officer, with the rank of colonel, make enough money to go into politics this way? Sure, being a Medal of Valor awardee entitled him to some financial benefits, but in 2007, the estimated average cost of running for Senator in this country was placed at nearly half a billion pesos. And while it is true the likes of Antonio Trillanes IV have set the precedent for running shoestring -budgeted campaigns, Querubin is not running under the same set of circumstances as the former Navy Lt(sg). Notably too, Querubin does not have the same set of credentials as a Danny Lim who is a West Point graduate and is currently being wooed by several political parties.

Querubin goes into this campaign already hounded by questions on his sanity (he was confined to V. Luna’s infamous Ward 25 for some time) and his profligate lifestyle. On the latter for instance, his room at his detention center in the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines in Camp Aguinaldo looks like a hotel room (see picture) complete with Flat Screen TV. Compared to the austere deprivation in which his former commandant Major General Renato Miranda lives (in the same cellblock) Querubin’s lifestyle rattles the sensibilities. Perhaps he would also use the same lame old excuse robber-politicos and corrupt generals would also use to justify their mansions – I have a rich wife.

However, this excuse doesn’t hold water. First of all, which wife would Querubin be referring to? He has allegedly had three partners whom he has introduced as his wife...er, wives. His current partner, whose surname is Azcarraga is a housewife with no independent means of income. The next logical choice would be for him to say that the money is donated to him for his campaign. Fine, we accept that, BUT is he free to disclose the names of those donors? It should be public knowledge. We have a right to know from whom those donations come from, so that should Querubin take the government position he so desperately desires, we would also know which interests he might be compelled to protect. Some of our sources whisper that some very wealthy name-droppables in Makati business have made donations already. Or so he says. Our other sources however say otherwise. There have been donations, yes, that much is confirmed.

However, certain sources of ours suggest that those donations were not intended for his political campaign but were supposed to have been given assist fellow detainees. Whatever. The point is, Querubin has made some rather large election related expenses lately at a time when the campaign period has not even started. Aside from the obvious violation of the Election Code on premature campaigning, he is clearly spending like a trapo, to quote Maderazo.

Someday, someone will have to pay the piper.

Querubin must tell us, who that piper is.

Querubin for Senator?... Quid pro Querubin

(Dona Victorina was hacked after posting 'Querubin for Senator?... Quid pro Querubin

By Rain Barnido

There is Mar Roxas with his multimillion media exposure that includes a padyak, paiyak-iyak and pamanhikan. There is Manny Villar, and his OFWs. There is Loren Legarda back to her sinta days. All ultra-rich politicians who are investing for 2010. They obviously can afford it. Then there is Ariel Querubin.The proliferation and density of tarpaulins bearing the image and likeness of one Ariel Querubin in Las Pinas, Paranaque and Makati (and reportedly in Ilocos Norte and Sur, Zamboanga del Norte and Sur) has led radio commentator Jake Maderazo to ask,
“Where did he get the money?

Why so many?

Doesn’t he know that the sheer numbers of these tarps make him look like a trapo?

“Well, we at Victorina would like to know, too. I, for one, would like to know how he can launch a multimedia campaign when his wife is apparently asking for support for his family needs from some senators?How does a Marine officer, with the rank of colonel, make enough money to go into politics this way? Sure, being a Medal of Valor awardee entitled him to some financial benefits, but in 2007, the estimated average cost of running for Senator in this country was placed at nearly half a billion pesos. And while it is true the likes of Antonio Trillanes IV have set the precedent for running shoestring -budgeted campaigns, Querubin is not running under the same set of circumstances as the former Navy Lt(sg). Notably too, Querubin does not have the same set of credentials as a Danny Lim who is a West Point graduate and is currently being wooed by several political parties.

Querubin goes into this campaign already hounded by questions on his sanity (he was confined to V. Luna’s infamous Ward 25 for some time) and his profligate lifestyle. On the latter for instance, his room at his detention center in the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines in Camp Aguinaldo looks like a hotel room (see pictures) complete with Flat Screen TV. Compared to the austere deprivation in which his former commandant Major General Renato Miranda lives (in the same cellblock) Querubin’s lifestyle rattles the sensibilities. Perhaps he would also use the same lame old excuse robber-politicos and corrupt generals would also use to justify their mansions – I have a rich wife.

However, this excuse doesn’t hold water. First of all, which wife would Querubin be referring to? He has allegedly had three partners whom he has introduced as his wife...er, wives. His current partner, whose surname is Azcarraga is a housewife with no independent means of income. The next logical choice would be for him to say that the money is donated to him for his campaign. Fine, we accept that, BUT is he free to disclose the names of those donors? It should be public knowledge. We have a right to know from whom those donations come from, so that should Querubin take the government position he so desperately desires, we would also know which interests he might be compelled to protect. Some of our sources whisper that some very wealthy name-droppables in Makati business have made donations already. Or so he says. Our other sources however say otherwise. There have been donations, yes, that much is confirmed.

However, certain sources of ours suggest that those donations were not intended for his political campaign but were supposed to have been given assist fellow detainees. Whatever. The point is, Querubin has made some rather large election related expenses lately at a time when the campaign period has not even started. Aside from the obvious violation of the Election Code on premature campaigning, he is clearly spending like a trapo, to quote Maderazo.

Someday, someone will have to pay the piper.

Querubin must tell us, who that piper is.

National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzales proposes revolutionary government

National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzales proposed that President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo be part of a military-backed transition government that would reform the electoral system and amend the Constitution—all before the 2010 elections.

He said the “revolutionary” government could be patterned after the one established by former President Corazon Aquino as soon as see assumed the presidency following the 1986 People Power revolt.

Gonzales further said that President Arroyo should be part of the revolutionary government which should also include the leadership of the two houses of Congress, the judiciary, and the Church.

Gonzales, who also heads the Partido Demokratiko Sosyalista ng Pilipinas (PDSP), said discussing his proposed revolutionary government was better than speculating on whether Arroyo would seek a House seat or whether her allies would succeed in fiddling with the Charter.

To which, as my good friend LPGD would say, "Bobo ka ba?" (Are you stupid?)

Isn't this already the case? Gloria is backed by the military and so much so that she's giving promotions left and right to those who supported her usurpation of the Presidency in 2001. She is already ruling with impunity through the stamp pad that is the House of Representatives. And as far as the Supreme Court is concerned, she appointed almost all the Supreme Court Justices.

I realize that by picking on this I may have already fallen into a trap which is meant to stir up and confuse people even more.

Do you realize how stupid Gonzales' suggestion is?

First, a revolutionary government assumes that there is a revolution. A revolution usually entails replacing the status quo with a new order.

This is the first time I've heard of someone proposing a revolution to MAINTAIN THE STATUS QUO. Perhaps what Gonzales really wants President Arroyo to do is to suspend all rights and privileges under the Philippine Constitution, and in fact, install a dictatorship.

Then again, Gonzales may be admitting that this is really Gloria's intent.

Just as much as I hate the idea of the military fomenting a revolt (for whatever reason), I hate the idea of Gloria perpetuating herself beyond her term which ends in 2010.

Revolution is a right and a duty of every citizen of this country whenever the government persists in its abuses and what the form of these abuses grow so vile that there is no other recourse but to revolt.

If there is anything that we have to consider, it is this passage from the American Declaration of Independence:

That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

How much more abuse do we need to suffer? How much longer?

We can wait for 2010, but we cannot wait forever.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Google steps up Anti-porn in China; too bad they won't see the Trinoma Mall Scandal

We may actually have discounted the impact of viewing downloads or video steams of the Hayden Kho Katrina Halili/Maricar Reyes/Vicky Belo sex tapes plus the Brian Revilla/Maui Taylor sex tapes. Who knows how many children in China will be named Hayden, Katrina, Maricar, Vicky or Maui?!

Heck, perhaps they get to watch the Trinoma Mall scandal, which is the current rage right now after a top rating TV program showed the video or some part of it. (Which really ought to get these TV stations to consider their policy towards showing these sex scandal videos because it does tend to increase the demand for the videos, thereby contributing to their spread.)

If you're at all interested, here's a download link for the Trinoma Sex Scandal video which I found on Flesh Asia Daily. Click here or here.

With over a billion Chinese, it would probably be a good idea to do whatever can be done to slow down their population growth rate.

I'd say this move by google ain't completely about keeping the Chinese from being corrupted by pornographic content. But rather, it's about keeping Chinese raunchiness under control.
Here's an article swiped from gmanew.tv:

BEIJING — Google Inc. said Friday that it would step up efforts to stop pornography reaching users in China after a mainland watchdog found the search engine turned up a large number of links to obscene and vulgar sites.

"We have been continually working to deal with pornographic content, and material that is harmful to children, on the Web in China," a statement from the company said.

It added that it had renewed efforts to keep the Internet in China clean after noticing criticism posted Thursday to the Web site of the mainland watchdog, the China Internet Illegal Information Reporting Center.

The watchdog said that despite official warnings, Google was still failing to "filter pornographic contents from its search engine results according to China's relevant laws and regulations." It said tests found that the search engine provided links to a large number of lewd and vulgar pictures, videos and articles, though it gave no specific examples.

China, which has the world's largest population of Internet users at more than 298 million, also has one of the world's tightest controls over the Internet. The government bans online pornography and this year launched a nationwide crackdown that led to the closing of more than 1,900 Web sites.
Since posting an entry on the Hayden Kho Katrina Halili/Maricar Reyes/Vicky Belo sex tapes plus the Brian Revilla/Maui Taylor sex tape, I've had nothing but visits for these entries. (Just look at my feedjit widget.)

I am a political observer and chronicler by trade. While I do enjoy the stats, I really don't think it is doing much for my reputation as a serious political writer.

Nobody really likes to read about politics, especially Philippine politics. You'd be lucky to get more than a couple of dozen visits a day on what you'd suppose to be an earth shaking political development -- like the Constituent Assembly and the Anti-Charter Change protests or even General Danny Lim's statment which has shades of a call to rebellion.

After researching all kinds of stats for Filipino political blogs, only Ellen Tordesillas seems to be making a killing in terms of stats. Of course, she has the advantage of being regularly featured in Inquirer.net and that, I think, contributes significant traffic to her site.

But even then, she only gets 18,000 to 25,000 visits a month. Compared to Starmometer which gets 214,000 or more visits a month, that's just about one or two days of traffic.

This is why, I have kept on thinking about gradually veering away from political blogging and going into other high traffic (therefore higher paying) blog topics.

Porn-fu anyone?

Funny animal videos

Funny Japanese Pranks

These are classic funny Japanese pranks I found on youtube. LOL!

Moymoy Palaboy sings Papa-oom-mow-mow

Since becoming Youtube superstars, Moymoy Palaboy (the two wacky Filipino brothers), have moved on to bigger and funnier things. Moymoy's brand of comedy, in these early videos, shows a certain authenticity that is hard to reproduce and can.

This video is a favorite and never fails to make me laugh.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

A right to revolt

Do we have the right to revolt?

Over beer and pizza, the bloggers of Dona Victorina gathered at Carlo's in Metro Walk to discuss (as Rain B. puts it) plans for a national concern that affects the future of my son.

During the long drawn out discussion which touched on many topics, including Danny Lim's statement against Con Ass or Charter Change and his continued incarceration, I pointed out to Trixie Cruz Angeles that the Philippine Constitution actually enshrines our right -- our duty -- to revolt.

I can't cite chapter and verse right now or pull out a transcript of the discussions when the 1987 Constitution was being formulated, but just point to our electoral process as a form of revolting against the current status quo.

But for sure, others may interpret this to mean bearing arms against the government also and they would also be right -- as this actually conforms to the usual idea of a revolution, that of seizing control over the state by force of arms.

Anyway, Trixie described the idea as Jeffersonian and I looked it up right now. Being hungover, I just opened the first google search result and found an interesting passage in www.homeofheroes.com, and to wit, here's something attributed to John Locke:

Locke believed in government to the extent that it was the obligation of government to protect the rights of its citizens to "life, liberty, and property". He further held that there was a "natural law" that was supreme. This latter concept indicated that, when government became corrupt, it was not only the RIGHT of the people to revolt, but their OBLIGATION to free themselves. As Thomas Jefferson penned his Declaration of Independence he quickly established that the Colonies not only had the right to revolt, but that it was almost a fore-ordained obligation to the process of natural law....

And this eventually lead me to look up the American Declaration of Independence and this is something I think is relevant reading at this point.
That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
However, a revolution -- even a successful one -- presents a number of problems and that mainly has to do with who gets control over everything.

Certainly, those displaced by the revolution will try to get back power -- if they are not all killed or rendered incapable of posing a serious challenge. Another problem would be that other revolutions may follow, instigated from within the ranks of those who revolted. Moreover, the problems become increasingly more difficult if the general population does not support the revolt but are merely forced to accept the rule of the revolutionaries after they are cowed into submission by violence or the threat of violence.

Nevertheless, revolts are always a threat any government will face if it isn't responsive to the needs and interests of the people it should be serving.

Anyway, just this morning, Facebook Buddy Izabelle Palanca Enriquez tagged me in a note and I sympathize with it's sentiments:

Ang Hukbong Sandatahan ay instrumento ng taong bayan.
Protektor ito ng mamamayan at ng estado.
Hindi nito obligasyon ang sang-ayunan ang katiwalian ng administrasyon.

Hindi trabaho ng AFP ang mandaya sa eleksyon.
Hindi dapat binibigyan ng premyo ang mga heneral na mahilig magbenta ng serbisyo sa mga politico.

At lalong hindi gawain ng sundalo ang pumatay sa mga aktibista, mga mamamahayag at mga taong walang kasalanan at walang kalaban laban.
The rest of the note goes on to explain that General Danny Lim (I assume) denies that his statement against Con Ass and Chacha was not a call to arms.

Sorry Trixie, I still don't buy this one.

Anyway, to the note, perhaps I would add that:
Hindi trabaho ng sundalo ang makialam sa mga demokratikong proseso at makialam sa politika.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Sen. Chiz Escudero to hit VP Noli De Castro over Balikatan Housing Finance Inc.?

(Revised and updated)

Are two Presidentiables going to duke it out again in the Senate? Will Presidentiable Senator Chiz Escudero sling mud against fellow Presidentiable VP Noli de Castro at the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee?

Senator Escudero filed resolution 1094 asking the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee and the Senate Committee on Urban Planning, Housing and Resettlement to investigate the National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation's auction of 53,000 delinquent housing loans to Deutch Bank Real Estate Global Opportunities (GLOBAL) in 2004.

The NHMFC is part of the housing cluster under the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) which is chaired by VP Noli De Castro. As HUDCC Chairman, VP de Castro is also the Chairman of the NHMFC.

Talk is that the innocuously worded resolution (which doesn't even mention that any wrong doing is involved) may actually just the silent opening salvo for a major bomb that will be hurled and exploded against Vice President Noli De Castro.

We're just coming from a situation where Senator Manny Villar's future as a Presidential candidate has been somewhat dimmed by the C-5 Double budget insertion controversy. Then we have Senator Panfilo Lacson facing the ghost of the Bubby Dacer slaying with the arrival of Former police Senior Superintendent Cesar Mancao from the US. Not to mention the MMFF fund misuse controversy levelled against MMDA Chairman Bayani Fernando and even the case filed against Senator Richard Gordon for holding the position of Chairman in the Philippine National Red Cross.

Going back to the NHMFC's auction of 53,000 delinquent to Global, there seems nothing irregular with the sale of delinquent housing loans itself.

The closest thing to an accusation against Vice President de Castro is that the resulting sale of the delinquent loans resulted in higher interest rates and "exorbitant" downpayment being charged to borrowers who are low and middle income earners.

The effect, as the resolution states, is that the borrowers of the delinquent housing loans are unable to pay for the loans. Their homes are eventually foreclosed and they are evicted.

As it is right now, it looks like Chiz Escudero wants to project himself as someone who is taking the cudgels for poor and almost poor home owners who are being evicted from their homes because they cannot pay usurous interest rates on their home mortgages.

Escudero will cast himself as the knight in shining armor and of course, in his version of the story, VP Noli aka Housing Czar will be cast as the Evil Land Baron.

Boo-hoo-hoo!

This angle ain't at all that interesting but I think Annie Reyes and the rest of the Chiz cult will certainly make a big deal out of their idol's new role.

Anyway, I think De Castro is a ripe target for character assasination at this point.

De Castro is a frontrunning Presidential candidate, at least according to surveys. This is no wonder as De Castro one of the biggest advertising spenders and has been accused of using Pag-IBIG Fund money to bolster his presidential campaign.

According to a report from the Philippine Star de Castro, as Chairman of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council and Pag-Ibig Fund, had ordered Pag-Ibig Fund Corp. to foot the payment of P45.8 million for TV advertisements showing him urging people to avail themselves of cheap housing loans.

Now wouldn't it be absolutely ghastly if apart from this disgusting misuse of Pag-IBIG Fund constributor's money, Kabayan finds himself being politically assasinated through allegations that he gave favors in exchange for a cut of whatever assets are recovered through the operation of the Balikatan Housing Finance Inc.?

It would also be ironic if AC/DC journalists came out of the wood works and began hounding him like heck.

Of course, he wouldn't exactly be a stranger to them.

Now, are we about to see Kabayan Noli De Castro fall victim to a major demolition job and see his chances of winning the Presidential elections make a final sign off?

Presidentiables vs. Presidentiables! Trapo vs. Trapo!

You know what this looks like? It's like watching Aliens Vs. Predators Part 2!

Dangerous convoys of Philippine Government Officials

Kahapon sa Quezon Avenue, may convoy ng isang government official na sumingit sa lane ko habang ipinagmamaneho ko ang asawa ko. Muntik na kaming masagi at kinunan namin ng video. Ipo-post ko mamaya sa facebook.

Pangatlong beses na nangyari ito sa akin. Ung una, convoy ni Jamby Madrigal ang muntik bumangga sa amin. Pangalawa, convoy naman ni Secretary Raul Gonzales. At itong pinakahuli, hindi ko pa alam kung sino pero papuntang Batasan ang hinayupak.

For now, here's a video message from James Deakin. Let's join him and this crusade against government officials

How do we make Philippine Presidential debates count

Will conducting Philippine Presidential debates actually lead to a more intelligent vote?

Perhaps not.

The majority of the masses will more likely to vote for the person they see on TV, hear on radio, and read about in the tabloids. And, just by listening to the AM radio for about 30 minutes, you can probably assume that it'll either be Mar Roxas, Kabayan Noli De Castro, or Manny Villar.

Nope, the masses don't care if the Comelec is erring in allowing these unregistered Presidential candidates to campaign prematurely.

To make Presidential debates more effective, we should first stop candidates from campaigning prematurely. What we see is a circumvention of the Fair Elections Act, if not an outright violations of the law.

If we ban candidates from appearing in ANY television, radio, or print ad, their only avenue of publicity will be the NEWS and the Presidential Debates.

Anyway, just found this on Uniffors dot com aka Life in Gloria's Enchanted Kingdom.

It's an article from Prospero E. de Vera of Business World, Yellow Pad entitled "Making Presidential Debates Count"

Here's the really good part:
So how do we make presidential debates in the Philippines count? We can have meaningful presidential debates if we:

1) Create an independent non-partisan Campaign Commission that will organize the debates and require candidates to participate. The debates should be done on free (not cable) television and cost-shared by major networks and the government.

2) Bring the debates to the regions to ensure that regional issues are discussed and regional stakeholders can hold side sessions for candidates with their respective constituencies.

3) In the long term, change the way we elect our presidents by including a run-off or primary-type system to reduce the number of candidates. Less candidates means more time for serious and real questions.

4) Finally, work towards reforming the political party system to make sure we have candidates who truly represent constituencies, support significant issues and have substantial platforms.

De Vera, PhD is a Professor of Public Administration, University of the Philippines and a fellow of Action for Economic Reforms (www.aer.ph).

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs"

I've been seeing posts on the "Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs" and apparently, bloggers basically just vote for whoever they think is an influential blog.

Basically, according to the proponent of the "Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs", all you have to do is write an blog entry that lists your choices for top ten influential blogs.

I think the project is laudable in its simplicity and directness. But sorry, I don't think you'd actually end up being true to the title of the contest.

I could just as easily ask Boojie Basilio, LPGD, Rain Barnido, Amiel Cabanlig, Patricio Mangubat, Trixie Cruz-Angeles, Rudy Q, POGB, and a few other big time bloggers (at least in my mind) to nominate me as one of their choices for Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs. Or I could ask Johnonymous to return a favor and nominate me too.

But would that mean that I am really an Influential Blogger? Or would it mean that I have plenty of friends in the blogging community whom I can persuade or ask to nominte my blog?

Perhaps you can argue that proof of one's influence is one's capacity to pull in favors or get people to do your bidding. Ergo, the more people you get to nominate your blog, the more influential you are. This is seems to be a crude way to go about it and I will tend to doubt the results.

I don't know if the proponent of ""Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs" is relying solely on its nomination process, but I would suggest that it doesn't.

Maybe a better way would be to distribute widgets that kept track of a blog's statistics and pair this up with an actual study of Filipino blogs/bloggers. It should, perhaps, take into consideration factors such as inbound links to a particular blog, page rank, visits, and other verifiable factors. It could also include an actual interview of the blogger to ascertain how they get their information and what they do with the information they get -- do they process the information and include their biases in it or do they virtually copy and past in toto?

I'd think an influential blogger would be one who gets information DIRECTLY from various sources, checks the information out, and forms their opinion or MANIFESTO, which in this case occurs in the form of a blog post. Perhaps proof of the blogger's influence would be how other bloggers (perhaps even non-bloggers) would react to it -- would they copy it, write their own manifesto for it or against it, or actually implement what they read in real life?

Actually, if you have an "Add this" button, you'll probably already be aware that it tracks the number of times that an article is shared (emailed, posted on social networking sites, etcetera) and this statistic would be a good indicator of how influential you are or how shareable you are.

Another thing to think about it this, as far as influencing opinions are concerned, the often quoted dictum is that once someoen forms an opinion it is very hard to change it. So, the race to becoming the most influential blogger will naturally lead to bloggers to trying to reach people who have no opinion about what they have written about. Chances of that happening are stacked against the blogger who must battle it out with websites that have a higher priority ranking from search engines and who have a reputation for credibility.

I think the "Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs" should have more science supporting it, otherwise, it'll just be a popularity contest.

Douglas Quijano dies of heart attack in Lucban, Quezon

Sunday is showbiz Chismis day but unlike most days, I'd think most showbiz TV shows this afternoon won't be talking about rumors but rather the confirmed death of Douglas Quijano.

We can certainly expect it to trump up anything else that will be happening today. Including the rumored pamamanhikan of Mar Roxas in Korina Sanchez' house in Merville and maybe, if it hasn't happened yet, it will be moved to a later show date.

There's nothing spectacular about Quijano's death. It seems that he just keeled over and gave up the ghost. (I wonder if he'll turn into so much fairy dust.)

Quijano's death follows the death of an international celebrity, David Carradine. The American movie star was found dead in his hotel room a few weeks ago and it was originally suspected that he committed suicide. The Seattle Intelligencer, however, reports that the star of Kung Fu and Kill Bill did not commit suicide. (And NO, he didn't die because of the fatal five fist exploding heart technique.)


Here's an excerpt from GMANEWS DOT TV.

Movie and television talent manager Douglas Quijano, an influential figure in Philippine show business for over four decades, was found dead in his rest house in Lucban, Quezon early Saturday morning and had apparently died in his sleep. He was 64.

He was discovered lifeless by household help and a house guest, the entertainment writer Ces Evangelista.

Veteran TV host and long-time friend German Moreno said in an interview aired over Q’s Balitanghali that the cause of his death has yet to be confirmed, but Moreno speculated that it might have been a heart attack. Actress and TV host Lucy Torres-Gomez, one of Quijano’s talents, said that Quijano was diabetic.
It was also said that Quijano had been diagnosed with diabetes. And if you didn't know, diabetes is said to cause a number of circulatory problems because the sugar that isn't digested or eliminated in the blood stream is said to coat and constrict blood vessels.

And if you are wondering why I've written an entry regarding this, the reason is pretty simple.

I'm trying to increase my stats.

Friday, June 12, 2009

An old Filipino tailor's Independence Day


(On June 12, 2009 we can just assume that 90 million Filipinos are celebrating their country's 111th Independence day from their Spanish colonizers. Filipinos used to celebrate it on July 4th but later moved the celebration to June 12 in keeping with the Aguinaldo declaration of Independence. However, history aside, the celebration is largely meaningless as a majority of Filipinos lack any real capacity to make real choices that may improve their lives.)


It was among a group of placards at the June 10 Anti-Con Ass/Anti-Gloria/Miting de Avance rally in Makati that got me thinking about the hunger that continues to rage and grow stronger among our people.

It isn’t the figurative hunger for change, truth, justice, or any of those higher end self-realization Maslownian goals. It’s the literal hunger of either not having enough to eat or having nothing to eat at all.

As far as I know, we haven’t seen widespread famine here in the Philippines, the likes of which we often associate with places in Africa or India. The closest thing we got to that situation happened years and years ago when widespread famine was said to have occurred in some places of Mindanao due to draught.

We’ve also our share of food shortages in 2008 but this was a misnomer of sorts as food (particularly, rice) was available but was merely priced out of reach for most Filipino families on a subsistence budget.

Sans any research into statistics from the UN or any other institution that makes a big fuss about tracking hunger, I merely gauge just how hungry most Filipinos must be simply by sneaking a look into the homes of the people living in ‘loobans’ near my house.

If you are not from the Philippines, loobans are residential compounds and in the part of Manila where I live, they’re usually lots with at least ten to twenty families sharing whatever space can be shared. It isn’t exactly a squatter colony as the people living there actually own the land where their rooms or small houses (really just a bunch of second-hand plyboards hastily slapped together with a few rusty nails) are built on; it’s more like the poor man’s version of a town home or a micro-micro-subdivision.

So, anyway, just today, I visited my friendly neighborhood sastre or tailor who lives in a looban and I caught him in the middle of what appeared to be a late lunch at around 2:00 PM.

Paused in mid-air was his hand holding a spoonful of tutong (slightly burnt rice from the bottom of the ricepot) with a piece of fresh tomato and on his plate was about three more spoonfuls of the stuff.

Mang Romy, as he is called, offered me some of his food without really meaning to share any of it. It was just a meaningless customary gesture of politeness on his part which I, out of equal politeness, had to refuse.

He insisted. I refused again. (This is really one of those Philippine customs that annoys me to no end.)

Then, finally satisfied that enough politeness had been exchanged, Mang Romy asked me what he could do for me.

I handed him a shirt and a pair of pants that needed some sewing. He remarked that almost all of his suki’s (regular customers) were all just getting their clothes repaired instead of paying him to sew them new ones. Then came the complaints that I have come to expect from almost anybody I talk with around my neighborhood and the way Mang Romy described his financial situation made him sound like an economist.

He said he was suffering from the global financial crisis.

Proof of this, he said, was that he wasn’t getting as many customers as he had last year. Then he went on about the customers of his who cancelled orders for new pants, shirts, and uniforms. He ranted about the dreaded Ukay-ukay lots that have blighted his business ever since the second hand clothing retail stores started mushrooming everywhere – even in malls. His rant about the cost of food, electricity, cooking fuel and other necessities (which oddly enough included beer and cigarettes) gave me an indication that his rather long winded monologue on the woes of his life was about to draw to a close.

In conclusion, he said, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was to blame for everything and the whole country made a mistake when it decided to oust Ferdinand Marcos as President.

I was rendered speechless by Mang Romy’s rant. I wracked my brains, struggling for a polite way to make a comment that would be agreeable but at the same time would tell him that I just wanted my pants repaired.

I kept silent, for lack of anything to say and he went on with his rant. I hardly understood what he was saying as the rest of my mind began recalling how Mang Romy was during better times.

For most of my grade school years, Mang Romy was the one who tailored all my uniforms.

During the better times, when Marcos was still the President and Mang Romy’s wife was still alive, I remember him smiling as he took my measurements just before the beginning of every school year.

He used to coyly remark about how much I had grown over the previous year and that I was turning out to be quite handsome. He used to jokingly ask me about whether I had a girlfriend already or not and usually, my mom would protest that I didn’t know anything about girls – which of course meant that she didn’t know I had already taken to reading my brother’s Playboy magazines.

Mang Romy was a pretty popular neighborhood tailor during those times and he made a decent living. He wasn’t able to buy his own house or expand his business beyond the small family business that it was, but his craft fed his family and was able to put his children through school. He seemed happy.

After Marcos reportedly flew on an airplane bound for Hawaii, Mang Romy was one of the few people in the neighborhood that hanged a laminated picture of President Marcos outside his house. He even had a KBL streamer under the laminated picture and he stood outside his house with an arm-band signifying his hard core devotion to the deposed President.

A few years later, when his wife died of some vague and untreated disease, he could barely express his loss. In the months that followed, he stopped attending to his business and missed deadlines, customers started going to other tailors and he eventually stopped taking orders for a while.

Life went on, as they say.

I don’t know how long it was before I realized that Mang Romy had stopped ranting and stood up to put away his now empty plate.

For some reason, I ended up offering him a cigarette and asking him if he had seen the video of Hayden Kho and Katrina Halili. He took the cigarette and said that scandals like Hayden’s sex video tape wouldn’t have happened under Marcos’ regime. (Yeah right, I thought, they only had audio recordings of Marcos crooning to Dovie Beams and the sounds of a bed creaking.)

It was when he took a long drag from the cigarette I gave him that I handed him P50.00 (the equivalent of just a little under US $1.00) as an advance for the repair job for my clothes. Then, before he could say another word, I asked him when he could finish repairing my clothes. He muttered some vague date and I quickly walked out of his shop.

As I walked the dozen or so steps between my house and his looban, it seemed so true that everybody in the Philippines is a political analyst/economist/lawyer/sports commentator as they explain their personal circumstances with words borrowed from what they hear on TV or radio.

I dismissed Mang Romy’s almost breathless rants as being the product of having not enough to eat. He had grown a bit thinner than when I last saw him and seeing him eat tutong was an indication that he was really making the most out of whatever amount of rice he could buy.

I wonder what he'll be eating next year, if and when we celebrate the 112th Philippine Independence Day.

So, you want President Gloria out?

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is laughing at the puny rally held at the corner of Ayala and Paseo de Roxas in Makati City on June 10, 2009.

Two days before the country's 111th Independence day of the Philippines, around 5,000 people gathered at the corner in the country's richest CBD (Central Business District) to protest moves in Congress to amend the Philippine Constitution that may enable President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to extend her term or run for a new term as President or Prime Minister.

The legislative measure at the heart of the controversy is House Resolution 1109, which in effect, convenes the House of Representatives (Lower House) and the Senate (Upper House) into a constituent assembly.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Makati Anti-Con Ass rally lays an egg, Gloria squirts with glee!

(What follows is supposed to a comment on BenignO's post "Rally! Rally Pfft" over at Filipino Voices. But I decided to just post it here.)


Have we actually stopped caring about what goes on in Philippine politics?

I don't know who else will admit it, but the issue of amending the Constitution doesn't make for a good topic of conversation -- versus, let's say, the weather.

I was actually at a Deli France on Ayala Avenue and Paseo De Roxas sipping a cold white chocolate something or other when four richly dressed matrons walked in and took the seats near me.

I heard one of them say, "Talagang galit ako sa Cha-cha!"

The other one said, "Grabe ang init sa labas!"

"Oo nga, hindi gaya sa New York. Kelan ba ang balik mo dun?" and the conversation drifted to their good old days as Sigma Deltans in UP. (Nope, they didn't talk about their wild days and believe me, if you saw them, you wouldn't WANT TO HEAR IT.)

Weather and travel. One point.

Cha-cha. Zero.

Charter change is a BORING topic. What makes it interesting and understandable is when you say Cha-Cha equals Gloria forever remaining our President. That's when tempers and nostrils begin to flare.

And so, the masses that gathered at Ayala on June 10 may not have completely understood what Cha-Cha meant, but they understood that they didn't want Gloria to continue as President. (I guess, Gloria can subtract 5,000 from her vote if ever Cha-Cha actually allows her to run for President again. She should be shaking in her heels.)

Charter change is a difficult idea to grasp and the process seems intentionally complicated by the difference in the wording of the 1935 and 1987 sections on Constitutional Amendments. Just explaining the difference is enough to put most of my friends to sleep.

Then you'd also have to explain the possible Constitutional issues that need to be settled even before we get to the act of actually amending the constitution.

Then, after that,is a whole slew of other BORING topics.

This is probably why reporters covering the news on legislation sometimes end up reporting about shouting matches and what have you.

Reporters aren't the sort of geniuses that may find Philippine legislation exciting.

Even geniuses get bored with talk about Philippine politics because most Philippine politicians rarely offer anything intellectually uplifting but just merely pander to common sentiments.

Then again, if I were a genius, I'd probably devote my brain power to more interesting endeavors like building an Anti-Matter generator or inventing a virus that only kills corrupt politicians who steal above a certain threshold -- which Better Philippines says should be around P500,000.

Anyway, one more proof that Philippine politics is boring is that I get very few hits on entries that contain my political musings. (Just how Ellen Tordesillas manages to get thousands of visits and pageviews a day really confounds me. Perhaps it is because she is Ellen Tordesillas or maybe there's some kind of trick to it.)

I get a lot more hits when it comes to the latest updates on Hayden Kho and the women he is linked to. (And here's a tip, if you want a lot of visits, just put keep repeating the words Hayden Kho through out the copy of your entry.)

So, now, you may ask, what is the point of this entry?

First, it's to say that I found BenignO's post quite good and that you should read it so you can see my comments on it.

Second, it's to say that Philippine politics is boring as hell.

Third, it's to say that I have maintained my top ten status in Top Blogs dot COM dot PH because of my posts with links to download sites containing the latest Hayden Kho sex videos.

And fourth, it's to say that you none of you readers have voted for this blog as being one of the most influential Philippine blogs. Not that this blog is actually influential, but because I have no integrity at all and just want to title of being an influential blogger so I can brag about it to my beer buddies.

So there!



New Maricar Reyes Hayden Kho video Part Three

(Just saw part three of the Hayden Kho sex video with Maricar Reyes. It was a real scorcher as Hayden Kho and Maricar Reyes did their thing with such energy.)



Here's a rapid share link for the new Maricar Reyes Hayden Kho video.

Aren't you tired of this already?

Anti-Con Ass rally in Makati: More pictures


I went to the Anti-Con Ass/Anti-Gloria/Miting de Avance/Facebook EB June 10 rally on the corner of Ayala and Paseo De Roxas.


At first I was convinced that I wanted to protest any moves that might give President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo a term extension or a whole new term through a Constitutional Amendment that might allow such a thing to happen.

But after a few hours of standing and milling around with the crowd, I began to wonder what the hell was I doing there with 5,000 other people.

I guess, I wanted to feel 'authentic'. I want to be able to say that I am not just an arm chair activist who writes about change and his indignation in the comfortable safety of his favorite writing spot in the house.

But just how do you do that when you know that a substantial number of the people there were also struggling to feel authentic about their outrage over anything.

Francis, my dear buddy from Bagumbayan remarked, apathy and indifference may be the single biggest thing that Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has achieved with her 10 years in power.

I met Atty. Trixie Angeles on a virtually traffic-less Ayala Avenue. In the brief conversation we had, I asked her if anything would come out of it and she said that probably nothing.

But I beg to disagree.

Some money came out of it. From my pocket to the cash register of Delifrance. From my pocket to the cash register of a Mini-Stop shop where I bought a Smart Pre-paid card so that I can load up my phone and smart bro (which is giving me awful service if not no service!). From my pocket to the dirty palms of a street vendor selling water, cigarettes, candy, and fishballs (he was pretty diversified). From my pocket to the parking lot attendant. From my pocket to the one or two vagrants that roamed the rally begging for change.

It's the day after the rally and I am wondering if anything changed.

Is Con Ass still alive? Yes. Is Gloria Macapagal Arroyo still our President? Yes. Are the corrupt government officials in government still stealing our money? Yes. Are Presidential candidates still spending tens of millions of pesos a month advertising false claims? Yes.

So... What now?

Anyway, here are a couple more pictures from the Anti-Con Ass rally.






The picture is blurry but in it are Senator's Mar Roxas, Loren Legarda, Chiz Escudero, Noy Noy Aquino, Panfilo Lacson, Pia Cayetano and a few other politicians.

I have to be fair to Roxas on one account. I didn't see him bringing Korina Sanchez on stage or wearing a garland of garlic. He didn't say 'Putang Ina, ano ba ito!".

However, he did mouth his TV Commercial's slogan and bellowed, "LALABAN TAYO!"







Raise it up man! They won't see it from the penthouse where they are pissing down on you.


"Bakit nga ba talaga ako dito? Nabunot ko ba iyong plantsa bago ako umalis ng bahay? Asan na kaya si Indo? Baka umiinom na naman iyon. Putang ina! Ano ba naman ito!!" Thinks the hapless rallyist below.


Are we just walking, talking, and eating pin-buttons for somebody else's campaign?



Don't vote for Presidential Candidates with TV ads.

They know it and the Comelec knows it, but the Presidential candidates identified in this article from the Philippine Star are still spending hundreds of millions of pesos for political advertisements.

VILLAR TOP ELECTION TV ADS SPENDER

MANILA, JUNE 10, 2009 (STAR) The elections are still 11 months away, but already, politicians casting a moist eye on the presidency or the agencies they head are spending fortunes on television advertisements.

Monitoring done by a media research company since October last year showed Sen. Manuel Villar to be the biggest spender of them all.

Villar has spent P321.4 million on TV ads, followed by Senate colleague Mar Roxas, who has used up P256.7 million.

In third place is Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay, whose city has spent P115.1 million on advertisements featuring his achievements.

In fourth slot is Vice President Noli de Castro, whose Pag-Ibig Fund Corp. has paid P45.8 million for TV advertisements showing him urging people to avail themselves of cheap housing loans.

He is followed by Sen. Loren Legarda, who has spent P42 million on environmental protection advertising.

Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro Jr. is featured in a National Disaster Coordinating Council ad that seeks to promote disaster preparedness and awareness among the people.

The council, which Teodoro chairs, has used up P30.7 million.

Opposition Sen. Panfilo Lacson spent the smallest amount of P22 million for his anti-corruption advocacy. He has quit the presidential race for lack of money.

Villar is a self-made billionaire, making his fortune in real estate. The Senate is investigating him for alleged conflict of interest and unethical conduct.

He spent P104.8 million last month, P75.7 million in April, P29.6 million in February, P32.5 million in January, P19.6 million in December, P22.7 million in November, and P36.4 million in October. No spending was reported for March.

Roxas, on the other hand, was born to wealth. He belongs to the family that owns the Araneta Center commercial complex in Cubao, Quezon City.

He spent P39.3 million in May, P114.2 million in April, P32 million in February, and P71.3 million in January.

According to the Commission on Elections, there is no law banning pre-election spending. (This is an erroneous reading of the law. PRF)

The hundreds of millions spent on TV and radio advertisements cannot be considered as election expenses since those who are promoting themselves are not yet candidates.

Election watchdogs have urged Congress to ban or regulate such advertising since it gives undue advantage to moneyed candidates. – Jess Diaz

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Anti Con Ass Rally in pictures

These are pictures of the Ayala Anti-Con Ass Rally. Took these pictures

Anti Con Ass Rally in pictures

I am presently at Delifrance at the corner of Paseo de Roxas and Ayala where the rally is. I wanted to post to my blog at Starbucks but the place is already crammed.

These are pictures of the Ayala Anti-Con Ass Rally just before the program.

But, with the number of politicians and their hakot crowds, it's looking very much like a miting de avance with more than one Presidential candidate attending.

I am beginning to feel really S T U P I D!

If it weren't for the fiesta atmosphere, I'd probably be kicking someone. Probably Binay.



Ninoy must be doing cartwheels in his grave. Somebody better check.


Argee Gueverra on his foldable bike.



Fellow blogger at Dona Victorina. Trixie Angeles.

These guys below are probably the only few people who are actually pursuing an honest trade. Fishballs and kwek-kwek anyone?

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