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Jul 31

Ramos anoints

A few odds and ends I learned over the weekend:

1. If you ask a Tausug, “have you eaten,” his only reply can be, “of course!” If you want to invite a Tausug to eat, tell him, “let’s eat!” If he demurs, invite him to “eat some more!” When a non-Tausug receives an invitation to attend a party, the usual vague “well, I’ll try” or “I’ll see” is taken as a definite yes, which can lead to hurt feelings on the part of the expectant host.

2. The problem with the new Chief of Staff of the AFP is his reputation for a kind of insubordinate thinking -no one, it’s alleged, can really command him. So the military is then set up as even more of a baronial institution independent of civilian authority.

3. If we look at Naga, Capiz, and General Santos, cities as places where the country is moving forward, how far behind are other places? In terms of how these cities have harnessed information technology, one person sadly says, other parts of the country are behind “as much as thirty years.” If these three cities, among others, are places fostering a culture of cooperation and excellence, how much is that culture dependent on dynamic local executives? Almost totally it seems -which shows how much more has to be done: were their chief executives to pass from the scene, there seems to be no consensus advances would survive those local executives.

Weekend political scuttlebutt revolved around two topics: the President’s health, and what was left unsaid but could be read between the lines from the published mentions of her attending physicians: anyway the President’s been released from hospital and put on a strict regimen; and second, whether the wrangling over funds sent to Beirut was more about the DFA not trusting the Philippine ambassador there with hard currency, and thus preferring to send money in trickles so it would be properly accounted for.

However, Senator Joker Arroyo believes there is really missing money.

Angus Reid Consultants says Filipinos Split Over New Constitution.

Two bishops oppose the small town lottery (which is due to debut in places like Iloilo City).

In the punditocracy, my column today (first of two parts) is Institutionalizing people power.

Billy Esposo reveals what he had everyone on tenterhooks for: the Anointed One of both he and former president Ramos as the next man to lead the country is… Quezon City Mayor Felicano Belmonte, Jr. I must say, I’m very happy as a Quezon City resident and Belmonte has arrested the tide of disintegration and inefficiency that had seemingly engulfed the city. Vice Mayor Herbert Bautista is rather under appreciated, too. But presidential timber?

Amando Doronila says the State of the Nation address revealed the twin pillars of the presidency are: the bayonet and the pork barrel. He believes she’s decided the 2007 elections are necessary to give her a mandate, and that constitutional amendments will be off the table until then.

W. Scott Thompson writing in The New Straits Times, suggests the President is a Marcos in the making -and this, from opinions he’s gathered from people close to her:

In a discussion last week, he recalled my column in 2001, noting that Arroyo had a full decade of power at her disposal (no sitting president is going to fail to win re-election!), a name and fortune already achieved, and could devote herself to her place in history by transforming her country. Instead she chose the time-honoured path of “trapos” (traditional politician) politics, rather than reform. It is felt in every quarter.

My source went on to say that she might leave the country with a worse legacy than Marcos…

“The problem with Arroyo is that she is simply eroding all the achievements of the past, she is tearing away at what has been accomplished. Her husband has institutionalised greed to a new standard.

“With Marcos,” he went on, “you knew something had to give. The country had to change. We had a revolution. She is going to wear the country down, grind it down to a sick performer, saved from bankruptcy by the success of the neighbourhood.”

Ducky Paredes comments on PAL’s first flight -and how the Secretary of Justice helped a fellow official evade arrest.

Jojo Robles reminds us of something I’ve also written about: a huge land case in Caloocan than has become a litmus test on the validity of the Torrens titling system.

Bong Austero is left breathless by Mirant.

In Thailand: reconciliation or further division? This is the question before the opposition.

In the blogosphere, here’s a blog with political commentary with a twist: Kung Fu Shoes Says.

Philippine Commentary attended the One Voice meeting last Saturday. More from Toots Ople.

Independent-Ig
(Link to front page image: Kottke.org.)

Achieving Happiness says allegations concerning the evaporation of funds at the Overseas Worker Welfare Administration is not new.

Design Observer has top ten things never taught in design school -which can apply to life and work in general, too.

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  1. juan makabayan

    Quezon City Mayor Felicano Belmonte, Jr., as Congressman then, distributed payola for EPIRA.

  2. leah

    I have 2 problems with Bellmonte, age (he will be 70 in October, so at the end of his term he would be nearly 80.

    and while a good administrator he has no vision. he just raises taxes, spends it to get votes, and raises taxes again.

  3. Phil Cruz

    Leah,

    At age 70, one would expect he wouldn’t want to stay in office longer than some people we know. I don’t know about the overall state of his health, but he seems to be still sprightly.

    However, that payola thing, if true, bothers me. The tendency to keep raising taxes, if unreasonable and oppressive, if again true, also bothers me. So I’ll wait for the reactions of the Quezon City residents on this one.

    I guess the 2007 election campaign has begun.

  4. juan makabayan

    Congressmen Allegedly Got P500,000 Each

    The Philippine Daily Inquirer
    (April 17, 2000)

    THREE members of the House of Representatives yesterday revealed that legislators were bribed into passing the Omnibus Power Bill last week.

    Sanlakas Rep. Renato Magtubo and Akbayan Rep. Loretta Afin Rosales said they received P500,000 each although they voted against House Bill 8457, or the Electricity Industry Reform Bill, which seeks to sell the National Power Corp. after its P500-billion debt was transferred to the taxpayers.

    Rep. Joker Arroyo of Makati City called the payoff the “untold story” in the passage of the bill.

    “We might as well cal that bill the corruption or racketeering bill because it’s the biggest racket of them all “said Arroyo, http://www.preda.org/archives/2000/r00041702.html

  5. makaglo

    ate glo is going to be our president until mickey takes over. Then ate glo’s apo, and so on. Don’t get stressed. Some of us may be dead by that time.

    The arroyo dynasty. Get used to that.

  6. cvj

    I’m uncomfortable with this whole anointing-business. The sooner we accept that there is no such thing as a Messiah, the better we will be able to choose a realistic course of action. If Esposo and FVR want to prevent a social explosion and restore faith in our political institutions, they should first help correct the current anomaly of having an illegitimate president whose main occupation is keeping power and in the process corrupting our institutions. Let the masses choose the leader, let the middle class fiscalize against corruption and injustice, and let the upper class purge their ranks of would-be crony capitalists and at the same time think of creative ways to relieve the social pressure cooker. That should be the order of things.

  7. vic

    Well, well when it comes to money we are the fastest, look at that, while other countries had already done with the evacuation of their nationals (those who wanted out) we now our looking for the funds intended for the purpose. Is the OWWA money really missing? Or it will mysteriously re-appear for now, and disappear again later? Oh!! money how temptations thou art…

  8. manuelbuencamino

    OK let’s get Ramos to walk the talk. Does he mean Belmonte now or later? Does he mean Belmonte before or after chacha?

    If he means Belmonte after Gloria decides she doesn’t want to be president anymore then he’s just blowing smoke out of his ass.
    If he means Belmonte after chacha then that smoke out of his ass is not just smoke anymore because he’s full of shit.

    So let’s give the geezer Ramos a chance. Let’s have him call for Belmonte now. Before 2007 before chacha.

  9. Karl Garcia

    About the number 1 point above.

    Haven’t you noticed around that when some one’s eating kahit na kulang pa sa kanya yung kinakain nya ang una nyang sasabihin sa yo ay Kain tayo.You need not go far as to observe the Tausugs to experience that.

  10. Carl

    In Ramosspeak, Sonny Belmonte will be FVR’s anointed only as long as Sonny plays Trilby to FVR’s Svengali. Ramos has delusions of self-importance, hoping to emulate his controlling and overbearing idol, Mahathir of Malaysia.

    The difference is that Ramos doesn’t have the long tentacles, the respect and the venerable track record that Mahathir attained through many years of leadership. Hence, Ramos is simply a talkative senior citizen, witty and humorous though he may sometimes be.

    Ramos’ anointment of Belmonte evokes an odd couple scenario of an elderly disciple and his archaic “sensei”. As some have pointed out, it is not very convincing, although it doesn’t diminish the fact that Sonny Belmonte has achievements to show for in public service. Perhaps these guys should be preparing younger leaders instead.

  11. Karl Garcia

    Scratch my question MLQ3,
    (that was a question,I just placed a period at the end,force of habit)
    Of course you are aware of the Kain tayo invites when chancing upon people eating.

    Maybe you are pointing out that these traits are of Tausug origin.

    Sorry for being slow.

  12. Phil Cruz

    MB,
    Ramos floated this trial balloon, I’m sure. If he really believes in it, he should come right out in the open himself and brave the winds and answer questions such as those you propounded.

    But it’s only been less than a day. So, yes, let’s wait and see what Ramos (not Billy Esposo) further has to say. Meantime, Belmonte has already been set up for target practice.

  13. jhay

    From city mayor to President? Memories of Alfredo Lim are starting to come back to me..

  14. Chabeli

    Unfortunately, Filipinos have been burnt many times over by majority of the politicians. But, basing the credentials of Mr. Belmonte as mentioned in Mr. Billy Esposo’s article, I think it is worth taking a chance on someone that has, by far, greater credibility. At this point, GMA is the epitome of trash; of what is “bulok”–the result being she is a CHEAT, LIAR and THIEF.

    If majority of Filipinos truly want to kick out GMA, then it is also up to the people to make things condusive for the “right” leader to appear. Otherwise, we will go right back to the trash bin. As Mr. Esposo writes, “We have great people in our country who can give us good governance but it is up to us—the stakeholders—to put them in positions of power so they can uplift us.”

    Now the challenging part: What would FVR do about this after he has “annointed” the “One”? Interesting…

  15. Schumey

    Didn’t Pat Sto. Tomas of DOLE admit that about P2Billion of OWWA’s funds were transeffered to Philhealth sometime in Feb 2004? We all know who distributed Philhealth cards before the ’04 elections.

  16. Chabeli

    Why are these IDIOTS–a.k.a. Spin Doctors–on TV INSISTING that they have given OWWA money to our heroes (the OFWs), to evacuate them from Lebanon and Israel???? STRANGELY this Rep. “Toothless” Salcedo naman is asking for additional funding (P500M) from the Budget to be able to evacuate the OFWs????????? Doesn’t this affirm that there is NO MONEY in the OWWA?!?!

    Schumey: Gasp!!! If what you say is true, it would be a CRIME if the truth of the matter is that THERE ARE NO FUNDS in the OWWA, after all!!! It doesn’t make sense why the IDIOTS keep saying that they have sent the money–maybe they’re just creating a paper trail to cover their asses, when in reality, the ACTUAL MONEY was never sent/received dahil WALA NA ANG PERA SA OWWA!!!! Hindi na yata government officials ang tawag sa mga ito–mga SPIN DOCTORS nalang yata dahil they’re in “keep her in power” mode!!! What a bunch of IDIOTS talaga!

  17. mlq3

    cvj, that’s the most concise description of how our democracy should be working that I’ve read.

  18. juan makabayan

    mlq3, I concur.

  19. Bokyo

    I agree also with cvj. Here we go again. Annointing, best alternative, etc. What we need is to improve our electoral process. Whoever comes out of the election chosen by the people should be supported, either we voted for him/her or not. Then that’s the time to MOVE ON as they always say. We have to work double time and doubly hard to improve and strengthen our institutions. We should not be too much concerned about “who” will lead us, it will be taken cared of as long as we help build better institutions and better regard with respect to authorities. Nagkabastusan noong nakaraang eleksyon kaya di maganda ang nangyari. Kung sana parehas at naging maganda ang halalan, we owe it to her and we have to respect and support GMA, pero hindi eh. Mas madaling sumunod at mag cooperate kapag matino at malinaw ang proseso.

  20. anne of paris

    Re Phil’s “Meantime, Belmonte has already been set up for target practice.”

    Agree.

    Looks like he’s gonna be a sitting duck to be taken pot shots at not by ordinary folks but by Malacanang.

  21. anna de brux

    sorry, that was anna de brux signing from brux not from paris.

  22. juan makabayan

    phil, re “Ramos (not Billy Esposo)”: please consider that Billy’s ‘packaging’, marketing, promotion and sales pitch for Sony Belmonte ‘as the next man to lead the country’ is so well crafted that should fit well in some sort of ‘design’. Billy and FVR are among the most calculating ‘kingmakers’ in Philippine politics.

  23. DJB

    MLQ3,
    I have a question for the Great Artists at The Independent: Where would they put the yellow flag of Hezbollah?

  24. snoopy

    MLQ3,
    “Belmonte has arrested” brings to mind a “Belmonte arrested”

    Were you curious about the whereabouts of another Belmonte who was arrested for the ‘nth’ time a few days before the CBCP statement and a few weeks before the SONA?

    I was. The day after the Filinvest raid I warned an RV reporter that admin will link the Bishops and prompted him to dig deeper. I did, and monitored developments re subject.

    The who, what, when, where, how regarding Atty Jose Christopher Belmonte’s intriguing ‘whereabouts’ (presence) would bring any reasonable person to the conclusion that he is not just Mayor Belmonte’s next of kin, not just an atty for any Magdalo, not really just another UP grad with a left leaning affiliation. The timing and the ‘frames’ are just too perfect..

  25. Phil Cruz

    BUNYE SPITS VENOM AGAIN AT THE SENATORS

    A mere appointee, a mere Cabinet Secretary, but Bunye behaves as if he has been elected by the people. This guy has continuously displayed arrogance and gall, just like Defensor and the two Gonzalezes. And the Senators let them get away with such disparaging remarks.

    Two days ago, Bunye reacted to a move by some senators to investigate claims that funds for the ongoing evacuation of Filipinos from Lebanon were inadequate. Bunye told reporters at the Ambassador Hotel in Manila that “at this time, investigations would be counterproductive.”

    That statement would have been sufficient. But he adds this :

    “The least we can afford is grandstanding and muckraking which will only get in the way of the evacuation efforts.”

    Spitting venom at elected Senators is a habit Bunye acquired while serving his equally venomous Queen. He used to be a decent likeable humble fellow before he joined the Vipers’ Nest.

  26. jackryan68

    MLQ3, Re your point no. 3, I ascribe Naga’s success to five factors: (1) a progressive LCE, (2) an active civil society, (3) leadership continuity: 18 uninterrupted years by same management team, (4) good mid-level management, competent bureaucracy, and (5) willingness/readiness to push the envelope of local autonomy.

    Our real litmus test will come if a hostile mayor replaces Jesse Robredo when the time comes. Will Factor 1, and consequently 3, trump the rest?

    The Porto Alegre experience might be instructive. The Filipina scholar doing a comparative study on these two cities said the Workers Party, who developed the Participative Budgeting initiative that brought Porto to prominence was booted out of power in the last elections. But it appears the new mayor is committed to continue the initiative.

  27. Schumey

    MLQ3,

    It seems NBN Channel 4 will be coming out with a new set of programs to rival your “The Explainer”. Last I heard, the tentative titles were: GMA, The Appointer and FVR, The Anointer.

  28. cocoy

    mlq3 you said po: “If we look at Naga, Capiz, and General Santos, cities as places where the country is moving forward, how far behind are other places? In terms of how these cities have harnessed information technology, one person sadly says, other parts of the country are behind “as much as thirty years.” If these three cities, among others, are places fostering a culture of cooperation and excellence, how much is that culture dependent on dynamic local executives? Almost totally it seems -which shows how much more has to be done: were their chief executives to pass from the scene, there seems to be no consensus advances would survive those local executives.”

    there is indeed so much to do, just to play catch up! still isn’t it all depended on people electing the right people who they want to improve their lives, or not? isn’t it the people’s choice to demand that progress continue or fail? there is no certainty.

  29. toots ople

    sorry guys..medyo offtopic: mlq3, have you seen the SnB TV ads?

  30. john marzan

    If we switch to parliamentary (let’s hope not), I think i have an idea on how belmonte will win the prime ministership and get the vote of his peers.

    From the Inquirer article:

    THREE members of the House of Representatives yesterday revealed that legislators were bribed into passing the Omnibus Power Bill last week.

    Sanlakas Rep. Renato Magtubo and Akbayan Rep. Loretta Ann Rosales said they received P500,000 each although they voted against House Bill 8457, or the Electricity Industry Reform Bill, which seeks to sell the National Power Corp. after its P500-billion debt was transferred to the taxpayers.

    Rep. Joker Arroyo of Makati City called the payoff the ”untold story” in the passage of the bill.

    ”We might as well call that bill the corruption or racketeering bill because it’s the biggest racket of them all,” said Arroyo, who said he had nothing to return.

    More here: napaka cryptic pa ni Joker re the person behind the payola scandal:

    Newspaper owner

    Arroyo said he had an idea who was behind the payoff.

    ”Not a single story on the power bill came out of the paper that person owns. Some stories were slanted but at least they got published,” he noted. ”But the money did not come from him but from somebody else.”

    Arroyo did not identify the newspaper owner.

    =====

    a Belmonte staffer by the name of Grace Andres was the one who distributed the money envelopes to the tongressmen

    Finally, the highest official of the House of Representatives, Speaker Manny Villar, has officially broken his silence on the P500,000-payola issue.

    …..Last week, three full weeks after the scandal broke, Villar spoke about the controversy. But to the public’s disappointment, he merely said that House minority leader Sonny Belmonte should be the one to talk about the incident.

    …..After all, it was Belmonte’s staff member, Grace Andres, who admitted that she handed thick brown envelopes to lawmakers belonging to the minority bloc after the passage of the controversial Omnibus Power Bill.

    An estimated P120 million in grease money is believed to have been distributed to members of Congress allegedly for ensuring that a quorum would be present for the vote on the privatization of the National Power Corporation.

    =====

    The Magtubo privilege speech here. Is Grace Andres Belmonte’s Joc joc?

    Mr. Speaker, fellow Members of Congress: The House of Representatives is in crisis. This House is afire.

    Numerous scandals have rocked Congress in its long and checkered history. Arguably this is the worst yet. For the first time an accusation of bribery at the House is backed up with prima facie evidence. And the whistleblowers have no intention of retracting their claims.

    Mr. Speaker, the facts are simple, clear and undeniable.

    On April 12, the day the Omnibus Power bill was passed by the House of Representatives, Rep. Etta Rosales and I, separately, were given P 500,000 in cash. I was told by Rep. Eleandro Madrona to go down to Rep. Sonny Belmonte’s office. There, Atty. Grace Andres, his chief of staff, handed over the money in exchange for our signatures on a piece of paper.

    Are there any facts or circumstances to corroborate this allegation? First, Rep. Madrona publicly admitted that he talked to me and indeed told me to proceed to Rep. Belmonte’s office. Second, other solons like Reps. Eladio Jala of Bohol, Nancy Cuenco of Cebu, and Joy Young of party-list PROMDI, openly admitted to Cebu media of receiving money, only they call it “bonus” and “gratuity”. Third, Speaker Manny Villar and Rep. Belmonte issued very weak denials, claiming only that they did not personally hand over any money, something beside the point and which Rep. Rosales and I never alleged. Fourth, personalities from outside the House, namely Sen. Serge Osmena and Earl Parreno, Pinoy Times Reporter, are knowledgeable too of the payola.

    Sen. Osmena knows three majority congressmen who each admitted to receiving P 500,000. He confirms too that the bribery was not selective but for everybody. Parreno, on the other hand, has a detailed account of how the payola money arrived at the office of the Committee on Accounts chaired by Rep. Madrona and how it was distributed to the members of the House. Allegedly, four Accounts staff divided the money into P 500,000 packets. According to him, by 10:00a.m. of April 12, more than a hundred majority members have taken their money while by 1 p.m. seven minority members had been given theirs.

    But even setting these facts and circumstances aside, the issue could be cleared up very easily. Rep. Rosales and I were both given the money by Atty. Andres. She is the key to the case. She could confirm or deny our story.

    But she has not. It has been 22 days since we spilled the beans on the power bill payola yet Atty. Andres, the star witness-to-be, remains absent and silent. Is it not utterly suspicious that she has not shown her face to the public not uttered a single word on the issue? It is her deafening silence that closes this case in our favor.

    Even if Atty. Andres suddenly surfaces today to deny our claims, nobody will believe her. She should have said her piece the very next day after we exposed the bribery. In fact she could have appeared and spoken immediately after our press conference since Rep. Belmonte was informed of our plans the night before. Rep. Belmonte has all the time to order Atty. Andres to go public and vehemently dispute our claims if our allegations were not true. The only way she can be credible is for her to tell the truth and confirm our allegations.

    Nonetheless our expose deserves to be examined. But what should be scrutinized are facts, not motives. Thus the very first order of business of an impartial and honest investigation of the case is to subpoena Atty. Andres and compel her to testify. What this inquiry should establish is who else were given the money, how much was given to whom, where this money came from and what is it for.

    It speaks of volumes of the character of this House, however, that its leaders called rather for an interrogation of our motives for revealing the power bill payoff. The tables were turned and the accusers became the accused.

    Still these counter-accusations hold not a drop of water. I am accused of tainting the integrity of Congress and destabilizing the government. I ask, since when did exposing wrongdoing in government become the wrong thing to do? I admit then to destabilizing the status quo where legislation is passed in exchange for pieces of silver.

    Mr. Speaker, I cannot besmirch the integrity of Congress since it is tainted from the very start. A single member like me cannot bring this House crumbling down like house of cards. But it can collapse on the weight of its own grave sins.

    Need I repeat what the people outside the gates of Congress say of this institution? It is called a “den of thieves” and a “rotten pigsty”. It is regarded as an idle talking shop where ambitious trapos grandstand and where laws are ratified for the right price.

    The worse “crime” that I have done is to confirm to the people what they already regard as common knowledge. Of course it is an infraction not from the point of view of the people, but a trespass only in the eyes if my colleagues grown accustomed to a sorry tradition of backslapping and cover-up.

  31. Karl Garcia

    Speaking of which. Anong kinalaman ng pag unlad,trabaho at iba pa na mag hihikayat sila ng chacha now na.

    It is an obvious reaction to the one voice ad about di nating kailangan ng chacha ,well at least sinabi kung ano ang kailangan.

  32. ricelander

    Is there any money left of OWWA yet? If we go by the stonewalling efforts of Secretary Ermita and Bunye’s obfuscations, do not we see a pattern? Read this: http://newsinfo.inq7.net/inquirerheadlines/metro/view_article.php?article_id=12805

  33. Jon Mariano

    It’s time for change. Our older politicians are already out of touch with the current reality. Hopefully they will see the folly of their ways. Cities with young and vibrant executives are the ones moving forward positively.

  34. ATE GUY

    ANG KAILANGAN AY MATIMBOG NA SI GLORIA ANG UGAT NG ATING

    PROBLEMA !!! ISANG MASAMANG SUMPA SA ATING BAYAN !!!

  35. snoopy

    jon marzan, last Monday I called Rep Magtubo’s office about the end result of the expose, they were at the Senate for the hearing on the OWWA fund.

    ” In a memorandum to President Macapagal-Arroyo on Nov. 20, 2002, Francisco T. Duque, then Philhealth president and chief executive officer, proposed the transfer of the Owwa Medicare fund to Philhealth.

    “The proposed transfer will have a significant bearing on the 2004 elections. I will be available to explain in greater detail the far-reaching implications of the transfer. May I ask that we meet personally?” Duque told the President in that memo.
    http://newsinfo.inq7.net/inquirerheadlines/metro/view_article.php?article_id=12805

  36. Phil Cruz

    John Marzan,
    Thanks for the item on Belmonte. Now I remember. And enlightened. And pftt.. goes the trial balloon.

  37. janv

    To snoopy,
    yes, you are right.Atty Jose Belmonte is more than a kin to Mayor Sonny Belmonte. His advocacy runs counter to SB’s commercial development in QC. He has worked in an NGO formerly engaged in empowering urban poor through conducting paralegal capability buildings so they would know and learn how to defend their dignity, their rights as taxpayers and as citizen of this country . He also represented the so-called squatters in QC’s depressed areas due for eviction as these people are not land grabbers, they want to buy the property at a price they can afford. The CMP success in QC should be credited to QC’s NGOs not to SB. I could cite a thousand , but it’ll be better that the writer should do his research first. No doubt that SB is clean with regards to nepotism as his people are definitely not his relatives..

  38. Mike

    An interesting secondary article about the subject :
    http://opinion.inq7.net/inq7viewpoints/columns/view_article.php?article_id=13807

  39. :-) stm

    mlq3,

    i watched the explainer’s episode on our “unending search” for a capital city. guess what? at least some of the plans for the other half of the quadrant in qc may be realized after all. the qc government has developed a plan (it has actually started i believe) to develop a central business district (cbd) that would rival (even surpass, hopefully) makati’s own cbd. an underpass along elliptical road (from city hall leading to the quezon memorialand the roads within the circle) will be built also…

    so for people who says mayor belmonte has no vision and only raises taxes, think again. the taxes we pay are returned by way of improved services not just in qc hall but in the entire city. employees misrepresenting the city are being charged in court and dismissed from service so they cannot again fool anyone else. road networks are increasing improving public transport. school buildings are being built augmenting classroom shortages in public schools (qc residents can proudly say that we have no classroom shortage here)…not to mention, the greatly improved garbage collection service at half the cost compared to the previous administration. i’m sure you’re aware about this because of your comment “belmonte has arrested the tide of disintegration and inefficiency…” qc has even been cited by harvard university for its effective fiscal management since belmonte took over…

    he has the midas touch actually! every government agency he handled greatly improved and became more efficient when he stepped in…try asking employees of pal, gsis, etc…

    thanks and yun lang!…

  40. janv

    Yes, I agree with you, in fact 25% of infra that belongs to National Infra are being taken over by QC. But why infra? Almost 90% of LGU’s including QC 70 % of its expenditure goes to infra. But why? Bec, iho, that’s where govt make money. Social Services is different from infra, as a planner myself, development is way beyond infra. infra constitute 20 % of the total city development. I was part of his campaign, taught poll watching, election related exercises to our constituents in QC, nothing changed when it comes to standard of living. Inaalis lang mga so called squatters to say that our lives are improving, in fact infra development is biased to housing sector, to the constituents whether you are squatters or not as it favors businessmen, outsiders to come in and drive the old residents away as it raises taxes more. Besides, there’s no such thing as squatters anymore when VAT was passed. No underground economy and free riders anymore as you can see the so-called urban or rural poor including the borderline middle class us included are directly taxed inc. children because we constitute the biggest/largest chunk of the consumer-market pie.

    For heads up, the Central business District in QC envisioned to rise between Agham Road and North Ave at present accommodating more than 40 thousand individuals or 16 thousand families plus working individuals who cannot afford rent in QC (QC’s has the most expensive apartments) the equation is like this: if the working family member earns 300/day (min per family) they pay P 30 of VAT everyday ergo. 16,000 X 30 X 314 working days =P 150,720,000 VAT generated yearly. Multiply this to the number of years since VAT was implemented plus the expanded 2%. The people living in every publicly or government owned land, in fact have been paying their dues with less govt services as enjoyed by those you can leverage with the govt. VAT was used as a strategy to tax the underground economy or every living entity in the world, ergo should be translated to direct social services and infra is just 20 % bec the now eVAT we are paying everyday that cld be used for very day’s subsistence is too heavy for those families who has only 1 working individual. (30 x 6days = P 192 per week). Are we so dumb to believe that the effect of eVAT is not directly felt by us? Bec. your sari-sari store can’t and do not issue receipts? (Barangay Govt taxes 50T enterprises, aside from paying licenses in city hall. Retail my dear, that we buy everyday already absorb the several 12% eVAt that is the reason why the wholesale-direct import prices are more than 100 % expensive than retail. and how can we recover that? While corporations can recover that with multiple tax exemption- overhead exemptions as individuals, we cannot. The P 300 per day minus salary reductions plus eVAt, can we eat the infra? Taxes collected should be plowed back to people in form that can augment their measly income so they live decently. Livelihood. Remember Maslow.

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