Monthly Archives: October 2009

Erap, Noynoy, Gibo, and… Conyo (!?)

ANC cable news channel is to Noynoy Aquino what FOX News Channel is to the US Republican Party…but 100 times more! Some people even believe ANC stands for: AQUINO, Ninoy & Cory. Who needs expensive infomercials? Eat your heart out, Senator Villar, et al.

Have you seen the “Akala Mo” music-video infomercial of Senator Villar? The second line goes “Akala mo CONYO yung pala, laking Tondo.” The word CONYO alludes to the often used “expression” of “tisoys” (Spanish mestizos) in this country; in short, in the context of the infomercial, Conyo means  “tisoy-bourgeoisie,” hence, “akala mo ‘conyo,’ yung pala laking Tondo.” We wonder if the producers of this video are aware of what that Spanish expletive  literally means and what it translates to in Tagalog or English. In English, the equivalent of Conyo would be, plain and simple, the most “private part” of a woman but in its most crass English slang — c_ _ _ (rhymes with “blunt”). We’re surprised no one has given Senator Villar or his handlers flack for this.

For those that would make Erap’s age an issue (we think he’s qualified to run — let the people decide if they want him) in the coming Presidential elections, here are some adages you might consider before coming to a conclusion: “age is all in the mind;” “you’re only as old as you feel;” “age is relative;” and “older but wiser.” On the other hand, you may also wish to ponder these facts: for those that have just turned 18 years old (voting age), multiply that by 2 and you’re still only half Erap’s age; Erap is more than three decades older than his youngest opponent; Elvis and Erap are about the same age; if you’re between 18 years old and 25 years old, Erap would still be decades older than your mom; and, the job of a President requires, at least, a twelve to fourteen hour work day (mostly day time, not night time) requiring physical and mental stamina.

When Erap over-heard a teenager greet his friend with, “Hey… Dude!” he tried to impress the youngsters by telling them that he, “too,” was aware of that Beatles’ hit song and even knew the words to the song as he sang, “Hey, Jude…take a sad song, and make it better.” The youngsters gave him a bewildered smile and went their way. Erap: minus two votes.

Erap is to “Erap para sa mahirap…” as Dick Gordon is to “Mt. Pinatubo…” as Noynoy Aquino is to “ang aking mga magulang…” as Manny Villar is to “nang galing ako sa mahirap….” Besides their personal mantras and hackneyed “motherhood statements,” we still have to hear from them their platforms of government and their vision for the country. “Huh, what for!?” Sorry…

A lot of people lament the fact that Defense Secretary Gibo Teodoro is arguably the most qualified among those aspiring to be President but, sadly, is running under the “wrong” party. It would be interesting to see how he can manage to run under the administration party yet distance himself from it as he must if he is to win; looks like he’s in a stalemate. Meanwhile, Secretary Puno has backed out from his plans to seek the Vice-Presidency; the “political guru” must have found out something that has made him change his mind. Survey says!? And who could be leading the pack for Vice-President? As long as Chiz Escudero stays away from seeking the Vice-Presidency, Mar Roxas will be the man to beat for Vice President.

Before the death of President Cory Aquino, the Liberal Party did not think much of Senator Noynoy Aquino as a candidate for President, or even Vice President for that matter, simply because they did not think he had the credentials, experience, ability and wisdom to lead the nation. Those attributes, they saw in Mar Roxas and rightly so. After the death of the late President Aquino and seeing the large crowd that came out to mourn her death, the very same people that considered Noynoy lacking in qualification to be the next President suddenly saw in him not only  the one  most qualified but  the savior, the messiah this country had been waiting for. This sudden “enlightenment” and “illumination” that brought about the revision in the Liberal Party’s choice for it’s standard bearer begs these questions: how did Cory’s death bring about the “realization” that Noynoy was, after all, not only qualified but  the more qualified (more than Mar) to be the Liberal Party’s standard bearer? Would this “realization” have come about if the former President had not passed away when she did and what on earth does one have to do with the other? Or, is the Liberal Party about fielding the candidates that have the best chances of winning, irregardless,  rather than fielding the most competent within their ranks? Let’s hear it from the… Spinners!

A group of rich Germans has launched a petition calling for their government to make wealthy people (with fortunes of more than half a million Euros) pay higher taxes. The group says they “have more money than they need.” Germany could raise 100bn euros (!) if the richest people paid a 5% wealth tax for two years, they say. One signatory, a Peter Vollmer, told AFP news agency he was supporting the proposal because he had inherited “a lot of money I do not need.” He said the tax would be “a viable and socially acceptable way out of the flagrant budget crisis.” The group held a demonstration in Berlin about twenty days ago to draw attention to their plans. They obviously realize it’s better to be wealthy in a wealthy country than to be wealthy in a “poor” country.
Let’s not hold our breaths expecting the rich of this country to do likewise. Chances are, they’re busy with their accountants finding more ways to lessen the taxes they have to pay.

Chiz Escudero lobbed a big surprise at the crowd that attended his press conference when, instead of formally declaring his candidacy for President as was expected,  he announced that he had quit the NPC and the “party system” – the need for a Presidentiable to run under a political party. He then asked his supporters to give him time to think things over. It seems he may be too young after all.

Chinese proverb: “If at first you don’t succeed, perhaps, sky-diving wasn’t meant for you.”

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Politics in the Midst of Typhoons

The weekend of September 26, 2009 saw the Philippines experience one of the deadliest typhoons (typhoon “Ondoy”) to ever hit the country. It was not, at first, as dramatic as many typhoons past because the winds were not gusty enough to bring down trees and other structures as we’ve seen previous; but the volume of rain that poured over the country proved to be the “killer.” Most of Metro Manila experienced the worst flooding in recent memory. Landslides in Pampanga and Bulacan buried houses situated at their paths. More than three hundred people perished and hundreds of thousands saw their homes and belongings destroyed by the floods.
The following week, it was the turn of Northern Luzon – a double whammy from “Ondoy” that lingered on longer than was bearable; then, followed by another typhoon, “Pepeng,” that put the last nail in the coffin, literally, in the cases of hundreds of people. Extensive floods the likes not seen before covered most of central and northern Luzon starting from parts of Pampanga, Tarlac, and all the way up to Ilocos Norte. (Damn! Damn! Damn!) In Benguet, landslides buried houses leaving hundreds dead. Damage to property and crops climbed into the billions of Pesos. Somebody lamented that, indeed, the Philippines was doubly plagued: 1) too much rain in the Philippines; and 2) two mutts reign in the Philippines. (Mrs. and Mr.)

The total rain from “Ondoy” that contributed to the Metro Manila deluge fell in only one day; the rubbish that we’ve been dumping on the rivers and streets of Metro Manila has been on-going for decades. “God, grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, the courage to change the things we can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

Malacanang Palace opened its’ doors to some of the victims of typhoon “Ondoy” and allowed them to sleep over until they could be relocated or their houses re-built. They were given food and clothing as well as blankets and pillows to make their stay more comfortable. But suggestions that they be given some of the shoes of Imelda stored at the Palace’s museum was rejected. They can experience living in the Palace but to experience being “in Imelda’s shoes” is a bit asking too much. There can only be one “Madame Imeldific.”

Lessons to be learned from typhoons “Ondoy” and “Pepeng:” 1) climate change is a real problem that affects all of us and is critical in the short and long run, as we’ve just witnessed; 2) clogging our rivers and canals with waste products that aggravate flooding is our own doing and NOT an act of God; 3) denuding our forests (attention: wooden hearts) causes mud-slides that causes death as we’ve experienced once again…and again…and again; 4) we must learn how to listen more closely to early warnings – weather forecasts (more Doppler Radars needed); and, 5) our government needs to enforce the evacuation of people living in “vulnerable” areas (some areas should not be inhabited at all at anytime!) BEFORE a calamity strikes and not only after the fact; it must also equip itself with appropriate gear, provisions, and tools in dealing with such disasters more effectively.

The prime minister of Taiwan, Liu Chao-shiuan, resigned last September 28, 2009 after widespread criticism of his government’s response to a deadly typhoon that hit a month before, August, and left at least 700 people dead or missing after three days of heavy rain. He said that his successor would immediately replace the entire cabinet. Here in the Philippines, in the aftermath of typhoons “Ondoy” and “Pepeng,” Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro and DILG Secretary Ronnie Puno are likewise ready to resign their posts…uh, to run for President and Vice President, respectively.

One for the legal minds: Senator Jinggoy Estrada accused Senator Ping Lacson of illegally wire-tapping phone conversations between him and a “jueteng lord” and a former Cabinet member… that, according to Senator Estrada, never took place?! Is it illegal to tap a private phone conversation…that never took place?

Noynoy COJUANGCO (Hacienda Luisita) Aquino and Mar ARANETA (Araneta Coliseum/Cubao) Roxas are passing the “can” around asking the “man on the street” to donate one peso (Piso-Piso) to their campaign – what’s wrong with that picture?

The legal “illegal” and official “unofficial” campaign period has begun and the reason Senator Noynoy Aquino has been catapulted to the top of the surveys in the race for the Presidency is attributed to his perceived honesty. Other candidates would be well advised to heed the call of the electorate for HONESTY in government. So, in the coming elections, expect the politicians to be campaigning knowing that the trait voters will be looking for in a candidate, primarily, will be HONESTY… and whoever candidate can fake that best has got it made! (Good grief.)

Senator Noynoy Aquino has appointed his sister, Kris, as Official Spokesperson for….whoever wants her. Now Na!!

TOP TEN WORDS AND PHRASES POLITICIANS MOST OFTEN USE DURING ELECTIONS: 10) if I win, my door will be open to all of you…(if you can get passed through my bodyguard-goons); 9) provide jobs; 8) eliminate graft and corruption; 7) …your public servant; 6) you can count ……on me; 5) because we owe it to our children…; 4) I promise…; 3) education; 2) we need leaders (like me)…; and number 1) [Drum-roll please] God….

Water or no water in the moon, just be glad there was no one there with the mind to retaliate and fire back at us a “moon made” rocket; you can never tell with those, uh, “lunatics.”

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