An interesting article on the efforts of the Philippine embassy in Paris, to lobby for benefits for undocumented Filipinos.
How the Marcos loot’s been looted.
The Guardian reports that Hugo Chavez has been all bark and little bite:
Since Mr Chávez announced a land revolution, headlines have focused on expropriations and sporadic violence which reportedly has claimed dozens of lives. A question seldom asked is whether the reforms are widespread and working.
Success would enhance claims that this corner of Latin America is forging a radical and successful alternative to neoliberalism. Failure would bolster sceptics who say chavismo is blowing oil wealth on old-style leftwing populism.
There is no conclusive answer for the simple reason that the reforms have not started in earnest.
In much of the country nothing has happened: no expropriations, no cooperatives, no bold experiments. Since a 2001 land reform act 200,000 families, about a million people, have been settled on to 2.5m hectares, according to the government, with part of a ranch owned by the British firm Vestey among property seized.
Given a colonial legacy which left nearly 5% of landowners owning 80% of the land, that redistribution is modest – and a relief for Fedenaga, the ranchers’ federation. “The revolution doesn’t exist. It’s all slogans,” said its leader, Genaro Mendez, beaming.
In the punditocracy, my column for today is Advertising a threat, which tries to explains the real motivations behind charter change -and the real reason behind all those government ads in recent weeks. Rita Linda V. Jimeno confirms that mobilization plans for proponents of the so-called “people’s initiative” are afoot.
Jojo Robles points out our population data is six years old and millions of Filipinos don’t realize they should be registering to vote.
Bong Austero on the difficulty of being honest.
Niall Ferguson on the decline of the American century. Read History Unfolding who argues Americans are now faced, in Iraq, with a dilemma similar to the Germans in 1917: they were stymied in the trenches and so gambled on unrestricted submarine warfare. Which hastened American intervention and Germany’s defeat.
Which country is the best colonizer? from Slate.
Inkblots 2006 was recently held at UST. Reactions from Miss Selfridge (a thorough overview) and random thoughts (with her views on column-writing, which was the talk I gave). Pictures of day one, day two, and day three from welcome to my life. More from my own little space.
Ang Pinoy Nga Naman is disgusted over more people caring about Makati rather than Naga’s mayor. Confessions at 7:00 AM says the Constitution was designed to be amended a certain way, and revised in another, so live with it. Blurry Brain believes a Senate review of trade agreements is a last ditch effort and what would be better, is to make the process behind such negotiations more transparent.
Banketa Republique liked The Banquet. I found it too stylized but what bugged me most is that I have a nagging feeling it made use of another story -but I can’t for the life of me remember which one.
The CAt on the wrestler Batista and baby Pyro’s dream.