Monthly Archives: July 2010

philippines is biggest rice importer in the world

To a large extent, the last elections and the victory of P-Noy were media driven. That should not lull PNoy into believing that his performance will be rated by how well his Communications Group handles the media, old and new. Communication is important to any administration in explaining and clarifying actions taken by the government, but it is no substitute for the consequences of those actions. President Noynoy Aquino will ultimately be judged by the people based on his administration’s efficiency in delivering basic services, the number of jobs created, and the impact of the state of the economy on the majority. While the campaign was a popularity contest, governance is what makes a difference in the lives of people.

 As tiring as the recent campaign was for all the candidates, it’s still a lot easier than governing. The former only requires promises while the latter demands delivery.

The Philippines is the biggest importer of rice and shabu. Does the import of one decrease as the other increases and vice-versa? Does not Shabu curb one’s appetite? These are twin issues that affect our very survival — food security and health.

In all these years of rice importation, any conversation regarding this commodity invariably included the mention of the name of FG  as being allegedly behind some of these commercial transactions. As Ninoy once famously said: “In Manila, you cannot keep anything a secret .”

The results of the Random Manual Audit of the may 10 elections of  5 clustered precincts randomly chosen per legislative district nationwide showed a 99.6% accuracy rate on the average, according to the PPCRV and the Comelec. This should put a damper on Mar Roxas’ pending protest with the Supreme Court. The protest asks for a similar audit albeit only in a few regions but involving more clustered precincts per district. Theoretically, the outcome of Mar’s audit should show a similar result to the aforementioned audit, the report of which was released July 29, 2010. But if the former Senator’s camp insists on pursuing their protest, it will not hurt anyone for them to do so. After all, it is their effort and their money that is being placed on the table and, one could say of this additional and more thorough audit, “the mar, the merrier.”

The underlying message in PNoy’s SONA that resonated with the masses is not necessarily to be found in its content but in the use of the Pilipino language in his entire speech. And that “message” was that his government will address the concerns of the man in the street or the great majority and will not be a government for the few that would have understood its content to the exclusion of most had it been spoken in English or a mix of both languages. This is P-Noy’s strength that cannot be underestimated and he should continue to use Tagalog in all his major speeches to engage the majority in his efforts at nation building. Hindi po ba?


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sona — “burn down the mission”

If after the SONA on Monday, the verdict reached is that this country is in a sad state of affairs and in a pathetic mess, then the people outside, the ones dressed in the more casual slippers and sando, would have all the right to lock in everyone in attendance — who in contrast will be dressed to the nines — and set the place on fire. After all, these “leaders” are the same people from the same families (notice the names haven’t changed), with their  “mix and match” temporary alliances, that have conspired and ruled this country the last half century and more; and the state we, as a nation, find ourselves in today (#51 in the 60 failed countries of the world) is their collective responsibility borne of their callous ruthlessness and elitist presumption that they, and only they, know  how to move this country forward. And this assumes that the creation of a more egalitarian, prosperous, and just society has been their intention all along as they are wont to repeat every election year. It will be the ultimate bonfire celebration for Filipinos, a real turning point in our history, the end to feudalist governance, and could be the light finally made visible at the end of the tunnel. Bring gasoline, torches, matches, and lighters! It’s not often we get a large chunk of them under one roof. Tee-hee!

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Of wang-wang’s and weng-weng’s…

For the new AQUINO administration, a few guidelines should suffice in learning how to deal with media: 1) answer the questions directly; 2) be courteous (punctual included); 3) say “i don’t know” when you don’t know; 4) don’t obfuscate the subject or the issue; 5) maintain a sense of humour  at all times; and, 6) be ready to duck fast enough when a shoe is suddenly hurled at you — a la George Bush.

What is it with the resistance to sex education in schools?! It is part of our biology, physiology, psychology, and human instinct not unlike the instinct of all the rest of the animals on this planet. And, at this day and age of information, it is also the most “searched” word in the internet. Should we let our children learn about it in the classrooms or in porno sites that dominate the web more than any other “subject.”?  It’s like trying to hide an elephant under the rug. It is ignorance about a subject that leads to all kinds of problems and not the opposite.

PNoy should use the wang-wang when needed – to avoid being late and to secure his life. It is lawful for him to do so and is a small privilege afforded the President  compared to the enormous responsibility and the heavy burden entrusted upon him. The message and symbol of the “wang wang” that was part of his speech – abuse of power and disregard of the law – is clear on the citizenry. Whether he himself or the other four authorized  officials actually use them is their prerogative. The rest of the 90 plus million Filipinos are disallowed to use it and should be apprehended by law enforcers if they do; it’s as simple as that. Let’s not sweat the small stuff. If President Benigno Aquino III fulfills his promises regarding corruption, poverty alleviation, and economic progress, he can “wang-wang” his way through all the city streets all day long and he will still be cheered by everyone he passes by. Now, on a similar sounding topic, did Erap’s inaugural speech contain the banning of “weng-weng’s” and if so, did he say he would lead the way by example?  Guess not. In any case, teetotalism is not a requirement for the Presidency. Cheers!

The electoral protest former Senator Mar Roxas  has filed with the Supreme Court will replace what was supposed to be the job of  Comelec and Congress through its Committee on Suffrage, and that is: to render a definitive verdict on the performance and integrity of the first ever automated elections in the Philippines. It is  a high price for the former Senator  to pay and it should be lauded by everyone seeking the truth and nothing but the truth regarding the  just concluded automated elections. Whether or not the final outcome of the protest changes the result of the winner for VP is beside the point; it is the knowledge of whether the last election was indeed fair and reflective of the true will of the voters that is of import here. Also, and of course, if it turns out that Vice-Presidential candidate Mar  Roxas was the true winner for VP, then it is only fair and just, not only to him but to all those who supported him, that he be sworn-in as Vice-President of the Philippines. We hope this protest will run its’ full course all the way to its  fruition which is a definitive conclusion, and not be  “suspended indefinitely” or withdrawn as most electoral protests have been in the past.

At 2:30 early morning (Manila Time) of July 12, 2010, the world came to a virtual standstill as an estimated one billion human beings watched the live broadcast of the Finals Match of the 2010 FIFA World Cup  between two countries hoping to win for the first time this most coveted football cup. This means more people glued to a TV than during Princess Di’s funeral or Obama’s inauguration; and it comes close to the number of TV viewers of the opening ceremonies of the Olympic Games in Beijing where practically the entire population of China watched the broadcast. Congratulations to the European Champions and now World Cup Champions, Spain, the 9th and latest inductee into this small select champions circle, and to all the other teams that participated in this “beautiful game” world competition among nations. Special congratulations to the South Africa nation for a successful hosting of the games. It must be remembered that it’s been only less than two decades since South Africa ended the infamous apartheid practiced by the then ruling class of that nation. Despite continuing problems with the economy, health issues, and law and order, South Africa has proven to the world that it is capable of responsibly hosting a world event as big as the World Cup. But as all things must pass, good things included, we must say good-bye to the now familiar (to more than a billion people) sound of the Vuvuzela.

Scuttlebutt within the business community has it that Pulse Asia and Paul the Octopus are close to finalizing a merger and the new merged company will be called PAUL’S-ASIA. Waka-Waka!


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