Thursday, December 31, 2015

Can they sail on to Pugad and Sabah?

Can they sail  on to Pugad and Sabah?
December 29, 2015 Blog; Tuesday.

                Are those Faeldon’s little boys and girls on the excursion to one of the islands of the Spratley’s or the Kalayaan Islands Group? Marine Capt. Faeldon is the self-styled “patriot” who wanted to sail on his own small dinghy to some of the Kalayaan Islands to confront China’s force present there.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

All lands should be owned by the State ( Part I )

All lands should be owned by the State ( Part I )

Maybe we can re-examine the economic doctrine which states that all lands belong to the state.  After all, we have been partially adopting the Regalian Doctrine, and they are provided in Section 1, Article XIII of the 1935 Constitution, in Section 8, Article XIV of the 1973 Constitution and Section 2, Article XII of the 1987 Constitution.   Our adherence to that Doctrine means that all lands shall from thereon belong to the state, except those lands that have been classified as disposable lands of the public domain.  By that, lands of the public domain are owned by the state and are considered inalienable or cannot be disposed by sale or exchange.

Monday, December 28, 2015


(Blog December 27, 2015; Sunday)

              This is a true story if simple story of Philippine media hypocrisy and corruption that represents the general media environment, narrated many years ago by Linggoy Alcuaz to me personally.

              The story concerns Linggoy Alcuaz’s attempt to expose the corruption at the PCSO (Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office) under the sister of the icon of Edsa Dos Chavit Singson, Honeygirl Singson who was named chairman of the PCSO after Edsa Dos (clearly as part of the many rewards to Chavit Singson for helping bring down President Estada).

              LInggoy Alcuaz, also an idol of Edsa Dos due to his initiative with the “Exclamation Point” sticker campaign that was made a focal symbol of the anti-Estrada movement by the true forces behind the systematic coup effort against the president elected in 1998 which we will have a paragraph on later. Alcuaz also got rewarded with a position, as director, of the PCSO.

              Whatever Linggoy Alcuaz’s motivation for attempting to expose Honeygirl Singson’s “railroading of a P 60-Million instant sweepstakes ticket printing” contract is anybody’s guess, but try he did. One of the first effort Alcuaz, a keen political and propaganda player, was to talk to Letty Jimenez Magsanoc of the Philippine Daily Inquirer about his expose and obtained a promise for it to be published.

              Alcuaz dutifully furnished documents as proof and evidence of the scam and followed up patiently for weeks. Each time Magsanoc promised its publication. Alcuaz waited, and waited. During that period of waiting Alcuaz noticed a series of PCSO full page ads in the Inquirer. Eventually, Alcuaz gave up following up Magsanoc and accepted the oblivion that his expose found itself in.

              I watched the saga of Alcuaz’s effort to expose Honeygirl Singson’s  corruption at the PCSO, this was in the early 2000’s when the euphoria of Edsa Dos was already wearing off and the clean image of the Edsa Dos  “Yellow” gang was being eaten up by internal rivalries for power and loot. For a long time the Inquirer and its editor-in-chief continued to protect the Arroyo administration until the signal from the U.S. State Dept. as reflected also in the Hyatt 10’s sudden turnaround against Arroyo.

              This is just one small story in the compendium of corruption cover up cases ranging from the acquisition of the Mile Long property that the Inquirer’s owners finagled from the Philippine government with the help of then Executive Secretary Joker Arroyo to the cover up of tax cases of a subsidiary company amounting to billions which its media clout muffles the good commissioners of the COA and the BIR as a former BIR tax examiner has exposed. ###

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Warning: shallow, do not dive!

Warning: shallow, do not dive!
(Beauty and boxing bouts, and intellectual poverty; December 22, 2015)

                Somebody texted me from out of the blue, “Miss Philippines is Miss Universe!” The text came from a colleague whom I would consider very much brighter the average Juan de la Cruz. He writes, and has a book to his name. No average Joe can do that. So I found it ironic that he would enthuse over something I consider shallow – beauty pageants.

                Ms.Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach won the Miss Universe title at the pageant held the entertainment capital of the U.S.A. Las Vegas, Nevada. I was at my business office when I received the text and to test the reaction of some of the staff I walked over as asked the accounting department, “What would you prefer to our country to be, rich but never getting such Miss Universe awards or poor with awards for beauty.”

                Out of seven ladies only one said she preferred we be a rich Japan than a poor but beauties laden Philippines. One explained, “The Miss Universe title puts us on the map again! At least we are recognized for something.” One said, “Our country gains from the recognition!”

I wondered what we would gain, and what we already had lost, like in boxing bouts in Las Vegas where Pacquiao wins tens of millions of dollars but Filipinos paid hundreds of millions of dollars to the Las Vegas entertainment and gambling lords, and to foreign satellite broadcast companies to watch the matches.

                What is clear profit in the case of the Miss Universe pageant from the broadcast and advertising rights goes to the capitalist organizers (still Mr. Donald Trump behind dummies?) and owners of the Miss Universe pageant franchise, and the state of Nevada where taxes for the staging of the event is paid. Will Ms.Wurtzbach’s win promote tourism to the Philippines? Maybe yes, but maybe tourism would be aided by better governance in the Philippines that don’t project news such as the “laglag-bala” and the Hong Kong Tourist massacre to the World.

                Don’t get me wrong. I love to watch the beautiful in everyday setting. Natural, not contrived. Genuine, not plastic. They are focal points of aesthetic relief in whatever setting one is, but especially in this urban jungle where the majority of us live today. I find them especially uplifting when their beauty also exudes the fragrance of high intelligence and character.

                I am not at all trying to demean Ms.Wurtzbach and her ilk, they have to do what they do to achieve high social goals they set for themselves. It’s the capitalist entertainment and marketing Establishment that make them become these cheap ala vaudeville and burlesque shows with glittering, garish, outlandish, opulent (reminds one of Liberace) and then skimpy costumes to enrapture TV audiences all over the world to take their fees paid to broadcast companies.

                Ms.Wurtzbach is, no doubt, a beautiful and intelligent lady. The latter quality is confirmed by her very intelligent, conformist and safe answer to the question about U.S. military bases in the Philippines which, of course, she does not explain would be like all the military bases the U.S. has set up around the world – intentional magnets for insurgency, terrorism and regional war the U.S. covertly nurture to launch campaigns of tension and terror from.

                The Wurtzbach answer to the U.S. bases question has brought in a national debate, but with a character like that comedienne and porn actress (as I learned from researching on the Internet) Ethel Booba commenting and supporting the Wurtzbach view against the advice of Teddy Casiño to balance the view with some caveats about the problems the U.S. military presence creates – it should be obvious whom Wurtzbach should take advice from if the really s concerned about the Filipino nation’s welfare.


(Ethel Booba with her fellow intellectuals)

                Senator and  presidential candidate Miriam Defensor Santiago had a tweet or text to Ms.Wurtzbach apparently in connection with the view on U.S. military presence, “Congratulations, @piawurtzbach! You are regal. But from what I’ve heard, we need to talk. See you! #MissUniverse2015,” which may give credence to a colleagues impression that Miriam Santiago may be the truly anti-U.S. imperialist presidential candidate now (because of the U.S. obstruction of Santiago’s ICC nomination, they say).


                In the end, Ms.Wurtzbach’s answer to the pageant question reflects a very dangerous proposition that is being fed into the minds of the mass Filipino audience enthused by the Ms. Universe win of their “beauty champion”. It was a shallow answer that may have deeper motives behind the question being brought up and abysmal consequences for the future of this nation. Shallow waters can be very dangerous realms.  ###

Monday, December 21, 2015

Overpriced power trillions and a charity farce

Overpriced power trillions and a charity farce.
December 20, 2015 blog, Herman Tiu Laurel

                Below is a photo from the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s November 20, 2015 report headlined “Energy Tycoons team up for disaster ops center” with Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Manny Pangilinan of the Ayala group which is racing to catch up in the game of power plunder with market leader Manny Pangilinan of Meralco, and this cardinal Talgo look alike in this picture cited by PDI as Edgar O. Chua of the Shell company of the Philippines.

                The tycoons or representatives of tycoons (as Pangilinan and Chua are mere overpaid factotums to real oligarchs behind them) fleece the Filipino nation of a hundred million people to the tune of trillions of pesos the past decades in Asia’s highest power cost, and the PDI acclaim this measly crumb of a P 48-Million Disaster Operation Center as a “contribution” the PDI audience should be thankful for and join PDI in singing paeans to!

                Below is a smaple of the poowerprices of Asean, other Asian  countries like China are only a third of Philippine electricity prices:

                Let’s stop believing the PDI and the tycoons or oligarchs of this country, they are all actually sociopaths and racists seeing Filipinos as mere objects for exploitation and targets of suppression and oppression.

*                                     *                             *

                Because of the trillions over the past decade and a half that these power tycoons have been raking in from the highest power cost in Asia the result is a depressed economy unable to generate jobs. Below are some statistics showing the Philippines’ highest unemployment rate in Asean and Asia despite th much ballyhooed GDP or “growth” rate --- actually in the Philippines GDP means Gross Dometic Pain and when that grows such an in electricity harges that goes into the GDP too the poain for Filipinos increases while the GDP or Gross Domestic Profit of Pangilinan, Zobel de Ayala, Aboitiz, Alacantaras et al grows…


Freedom of the press and mass media PART ONE

Freedom of the press and mass media

Part 1
Many of our people believe that freedom of the press is the most important mechanism that gives life to our democracy.  It is through that freedom that we come to know about the venalities being committed by our government officials; that without it, our institution would die. Nonetheless, behind the facade of what we consider our sanctified freedom, seldom do we know that there is a wide difference between the press as we understand of it, from the media, although both assume to possess the privilege of freedom to carry out their undertakings.

Boycotting China

Boycotting China

Our pro-Japanese President should stop taunting China just to reassure us that we are making headway in our dispute with China.  Rather, as we persist in bringing our cause to the international forum, we are only adding humiliation to ourselves, not from the standpoint that we have no right whatsoever to our claim, but in our approach in bringing our cause to the international arena.   

Suspicion of blackmail

Suspicion of blackmail

There must be something that is pestering President Aquino in wanting the Senate to approve the sellout agreement called the Bangsamoro Basic Law.  The public is equally getting curious, for maybe there is in that agreement something we do not know which reason why his appointed panel virtually collaborated with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to come out with a shoddy agreement. Looking at his conduct, one could draw an inference that the President appears to have been blackmailed either by the MILF or by its principal sponsor to accept the BBL in its original form.    

The Liberal Party

The Liberal Party

When President Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Aquino sounded out the possibility he might run again, as running mate of Department of Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas, he spelled  out the truth that the ruling Liberal Party is running out of credible presidentiables.  Maybe the naïve idea is not motivated to keep himself in power but to save the party from an unexpected demise.  Maybe PNoy is still hallucinating that he and he alone could save the party that earned the bad connotations about the real nature of politics in this country.

Profit, not ownership

Profit, not ownership

Some members of the Senate are again toying with the idea of amending the Constitution, particularly Article XII, Section 2, paragraph 1, on national economy and patrimony. Apart from Senate President Franklin Drilon and Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte, lackeys of the administration have expressed their endorsement.   However, those who oppose say there is no such thing as self-limitation to the power of Congress to amend the charter that was ratified in 1987 with much fanfare and delusion.

PNoy’s zero-sum game strategy

PNoy’s zero-sum game strategy

The issues about the Bangsamoro Basic Law and our current tension with China may be unrelated.  But to those who could understand its implication, our intensified anti-Chinese stand came as no surprise.  Some say our heightened tension with China over those uninhabited islands in the Spratly was purposely instigated to neutralize the unprecedented revulsion by our people over a law that could formally break up the Philippines to give way to the creation of a theocratic Islamic state instigated by Malaysia.

Where is the Liberal Party headed?

Where is the Liberal Party headed?

Charlatanism is practically in the soul of the members of the Liberal Party, for it seems this is the only party that would not think twice on whom to draft as its standard bearer for President just to retain their political power. Maybe it is Machiavellian, for after all, politics is power. But human civilization has brought with it nuances that power is bestowed, and they expect the one vested with power to make their aspirations tangible by concrete accomplishments.

Our self-created crisis with China

Our self-created crisis with China

We are the only country that has loudly been expressing our apprehension that China would one day eject us from the Spratly islands.   We have been most vociferous in accusing China of expansionism while the rest of our Asean neighbors are having a hard time trying to decipher what we want to get in our antagonism of our giant neighbor.  The latest of our verbal tussle with China pertains to its reclamation in the Subi (Zamora) reef.  We reacted sharply by accusing China of “aggression.”  It was followed by the visit of AFP chief of staff, Gen. Gregorio Catapang, to show that we are deeply entrenched in the area, and are not alone.