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Voting for overseas Filipinos starts tomorrow
By mlq3 Posted in Daily Dose on April 13, 2007 100 Comments 8 min read
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Apologies to you, gentle reader, as the comment thingamajig went kaputt again.

After a period of initial optimism, the recovery of the President’s husband seems to have “slowed down,” leading to renewed speculation as to what his prospects are. However, the President will still make a (truncated) visit to China. The blogosphere has responded to the situation: My Cuddly Face of Blogging calls it hype; littleprincessdiaries is frankly hostile; Far From Neutral Notions is indifferent; The Bunker Chronicles points to what some might consider a jinx at work; Daily Musings points to negative bias in (some of the) media; but to me, the most interesting response comes from a Filipino doctor, Bubbleman.

Ricky Carandang in an exclusive for ABS-CBNNews.com reports the GSIS sold its stake in San Miguel Corporation. This at the heels of a reported inflow of hot money into the stock market, which at first left but is returning, according to the Central Bank. This, as concerns over a Fed rate increase led to a dip in the market.

In campaign news, some administration candidates are irked over the “town hall” meeting strategy and some are refusing to follow it.

Tomorrow, voting for Overseas Filipino Workers begins. Filipinos overseas can vote for 12 senators and 1 party list. If you’re a Filipino overseas and intend to vote, see the Committee on Overseas Absentee Volting website to see polling places, or conduct a search to check if you’re entitled to vote. Her’es more information from an email I just received:

PERSONAL VOTING

Those registered under the jurisdiction of the following Posts may go to the Philippine Embassy/Consulate or Labor Office to cast their votes:

Riyadh PE (Saudi Arabia)
Jeddah PCG (Saudi Arabia)
POLO Al-khobar (Saudi Arabia)
Dubai PCG (United Arab Emirates)
Hongkong PCG (Hongkong)
POLO Macau (Macau)
Athens PE (Greece)
Saipan PCG (Northern Marianas Islands)
Kuwait PE (Kuwait)
Beijing PE (PROC)
Guangzhou PCG (PROC)
Shanghai PCG (PROC)
Xiamen PCG (PROC)
Hanoi PE (Vietnam)
Tripoli PE (Libya)
Beirut PE (Lebanon)
Vientianne PE (Laos)
Yangon PE (Myanmar)
New Delhi PE (India)
Port Moresby PE (Papua New Guinea)
Amman PE (Jordan)
Manama PE (Bahrain)
Muscat PE (Oman)
Doha PE (Qatar)
Koror PCG (Palau)

Verify the schedule of voting at your respective Posts. If your name is in the CLOAV, bring any identification card bearing your signature and photograph. A voter’s ID may be presented for purposes of identification but it is not a requirement for you to be able to vote.

VOTING BY MAIL
Voters who are not residing in the above-mentioned countries and not under the jurisdiction of the cited Posts will vote by mail.

You will receive a mailing/packet envelope that contains the ballot and the envelopes to seal and send/deliver the ballot. It also contains the Certified List of Candidates and Instructions which provides the step-by-step procedures on how you will be able to cast your vote.

Please note that the Outer Envelope should bear your printed name and the signature that you used when you registered as an overseas absentee voter. As well, use only the envelopes provided by the Commission.

Finally, make sure that the accomplished ballot reaches the Post on or before 3:00pm (Philippine Time) on May 14, 2007 to ensure that your votes will be counted.

MODIFIED VOTING BY MAIL
For overseas absentee voters underline jurisdiction of the following Posts, namely:

Rome PE (Italy)
Holy See PE (Italy)
Milan PCG (Italy)

Your mailing/packet envelopes will be sent to these Posts. You may pick them up personally and cast your votes at the Embassy or the Consulate, as the case may be. Check also if the Posts will establish pick-up points where the Post personnel will bring the mailing envelopes to an identified place near the place where you reside.

VOTING BY SEAFARERS
Seafarers may vote at any Post adopting personal voting (see above). Additionally, you can also vote at the following Posts adopting voting by mail.

Caracas PE (Venezuela)
Brussels PE (Belgium)
Ottawa PE (Canada)
Vancouver PCG (Canada)
Hamburg PCG (Germany)
The Hague PE (Netherlands)
Wellington PE (New Zealand)
Stockholm Pe (Sweden)
MECO Kaohsiung (Taiwan)
London PE (United Kingdom)
Los Angeles PCG (USA)
Washington PE (USA)
San Francisco PCG (USA)
Brunei PE (Brunei)
Seoul PE (South Korea)
Singapore PE (Singapore)
Tokyo PE (Japan)
Osaka PCG (Japan)
Canberra PE (Australia)
Sydney PCG (Australia)

From time to time, do check our website for field voting schedules that will be conducted by the Posts concerned. Under this scheme, the Post personnel will be bringing the mailing envelopes to the port or the vessel so that you will be able to vote.

The Singapore PM is apparently facing the unthinkable: pressure from public opinion on official salary increases.

In the punditocracy and the blogosphere: John Nery in Inquirer Current says columnist Tony Lopez is dead wrong when it comes to surveys (to be precise, he’s mentally dishonest). See what Rasheed Abou-Alsamh has to say on the surveys, too.

See The Head Heeb on the Nigerian elections and In Asia on the East Timor elections. The Korea Herald editorializes on why the President of South Korea should drop proposals to amend the constitution. James Wolcott on how Rush Limbaugh has “blinded millions of Americans to the climate crisis.”

As you know, I’m a great fan of Adam Curtis and his latest documentary, The Trap: What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom is a must-see. Watching it, and the thoughts of some bloggers, led me to writing an entry titled “Cult of the Market” in Inquirer Current on the documentary, and the question of why it is, that our focus on politics has shifted to the assumption that the market can solve everything better than politics can, and the clash between our (in many ways) highly traditional culture, and the dissatisfaction, even impatience, those who consider themselves inclined towards modern thinking feel (with regards to politics, first and foremost).

big mango writes on the greatness of leaders and how that greatness, to his mind, is premised on the idea of sacrifice.His entry reminds me of a quotation from Theodore Roosevelt that often makes it to yearbook entries, among other things:

It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.”

“Citizenship in a Republic,”
Speech at the Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910

Which serves as a splendid rationale for involvement in the public arena. But as Curtis points out in his documentary, for decades now, the assumption in the West (and by extension, anyone affected by whatever is intellectually in vogue in the West) is that no one in public life is really after the public good; the result being the assumption that politics is not, because it can never, ever, be, a positive activity; that instead, what can make life better is to leave the market as unrestricted and unfettered as possible, in itself an attitude unprecedented in human history.

This belief has affected those in a position to have an impact on society to an extent others can only aspire to: the middle and upper classes and that portion of the larger whole who claim to speak for the downtrodden majority (but who are themselves an elite, too). Iniibig ko ang Pilipinas! who has had experience in radical causes, points to this in his latest entry. And a very thought-provoking (and perceptive) case he makes, indeed. By taking a look at what he believes to be the flaws of Ang Kapatiran, he also points to the assumptions that group is fighting, when it comes to those who share the same milieu, though no longer, sense of politics as a useful public mission.

An interview with Kurt Vonnegut, courtesy of Open Culture; while Poor Mojo Newswire takes note of his passing; read The Guardian obituary.

Read the Military History Carnival. In The Politico: remembering the day Harry Truman found out he was president.

TV Squad on noises only young people can hear.

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  1. In campaign news, some administration candidates are irked over the “town hall” meeting strategy and some are refusing to follow it.

    mas maganda kung mga ordinary citizens at supporters mo ang audience sa townhall meeting kaysa mga local government officials at baranggay captains. you don’t get much real enthusiasm from those crowds.

  2. I surprised to received an mail from COMELEC today. It actually a ballot for senate and party list. So here I have to decide today and my final vote is…. dyaraannn.

    1. Joker Arroyo
    2. Martin Bautista
    3. Miguel Zubiri
    4. Mike Defensor
    5. Edgardo Angara
    6. Noynoy Aquino.
    7. Ralph Recto
    8. Francis Pangilinan
    9. Manny Villar

    I decided to drop Sonia Roco in the last minute because of that atuistic remarks….

    Party List, wala yung gusto kong iboto so I leave it blank.

  3. MLQ3,
    My comment on John’s post at Inquirer current:

    John–
    There is one very disturbing SWS failure that I think Tony Lopez was actually thinking about–it is the 2004 SWS day of election survey for Manila in which the SWS got not only the winner but the margin of victory both totally wrong–Mahar Mangahas went on nationwide TV to announce that GMA had won the election and it became the headline news worldwide almost immediately–after which the whole world assumed GMA did indeed win the election. After the Comelec’s results were in, FPJ had won Manila by a landslide contrary to that faux pas. I personally called on SWS and Mercy Abad of Trends MBL a month after to get an explanation for what was, by my calculation a statistically improbable (ten billion to one!) result–they had absolutely no explanation. But I do: the data given to SWS by Trends MBL was somehow falsified or fudged to make sure that the world news right after the election was that GMA had won in the National Capitol Region. It’s the only explanation because I happen to trust SWS. It points to a terrible vulnerability of even the most honest and scientifically perspicacious pollster: garbage in garbage out!

    BTW, let me explain that the result was really next to impossible and not just some clerical mistake. Statistical polling doesn’t work like that because the margins of error are statistical sampling errors and cannot take into account clerical or intentional errors in the data.

    What perhaps Tony Lopez should be saying is that because SWS and PUlse don’t collect their own data, that data is vulnerable to shenanigans. Trends MBL or whoever is the data collector needs to be watch far more carefully, yet most people don’t even know about them.

  4. MLQ3,
    As a further comment on the subject of the polls, I’ve theorized in a number of posts how the 2004 Manila Exit Poll was corrupted. I believe that the administration had a mole or moles within the data collection agency of Mercy Abad (maybe not herself) who informed the Palace and its operatives about where the day of election surveys would be held. Perhaps they were passed a list of the locations or even the addresses where the interviews would be conducted. Knowing this beforehand, they could’ve flooded the area with plants or perhaps even paid people to volunteer for the interviews. It’s the only way I could think of that the random sampling from a population that was actually going for FPJ overwhelmingly was fudged to make it look like GMA had the majority. The only thing that disturbs me is how shifty eyed Mercy Abad and the SWS rep during my meeting with them in July 2004 seemed to be and how they tried to snow me with “Oh it was just an error…” bull. To this day, I challenge them to give a reasonable explanation for that space-time anomaly.

    I want to emphasize the need for people NOT to rely on the so-called credibility and track record of SWS or Pulse in these surveys because they are not invulnerable to a knowledgeable attack. And the Palace, remember, had tried to prevent the exit polling from taking place at all, knowing that Manila day of election survey would almost surely result in worldwide headlines that the opposition candidate had won the NCR. They KNEW it was gonna be bad news since all the polling prior to the election predicted that, even if GMA was catching up nationwide. They really could not afford that if they were also gonna Garci the result. They saw it coming and had ample time to prepare “Plan B” after the Supreme Court upheld the right of SWS and ABSCBN to conduct the poll. The real villain was, or was inside, Trends MBL.

  5. (In the above, I meant the Supreme Court decision in 1998 upholding the exit polls as “freedom of expression”.)

  6. Rego: you’re dropping Roco just because she made a bad analogy? Just because she made an off-the-cuff remark doesn’t mean she’ll pass a bill discriminating against autism.

  7. q3 and john, the Roosevelt speech has an interesting side-note which may be a problem that faces a few of Filipinos (and other nationalities) —- the fear of failure.

    Read again the last line. The Roosevelts of this world will thrive in the call for action and effort despite achievement and failure being mentioned in one breath. A few though, will see less of the triumph of high achievement (what they sense is they will only obtain a little bit of glory — maybe be just a little bit better-off than their parents), and more pained by the thought of failing to be the multimillionaire that they feel they deserve because “hard work is not their destiny, great honor is”, especially when laying blame on this-item-here or this-item-there is what everyone else says.

  8. SWS and Pulse cannot say they were independent back in 2004, because they both relied on Mercy Abad’s Trends to gather data.

    http://www.politicaljunkie.blogspot.com/2004/03/sws-pulse-asia-and-mercy-abad.html

    http://www.politicaljunkie.blogspot.com/2004/11/look-back-at-sws-exit-poll-fiasco.html

    http://www.politicaljunkie.blogspot.com/2005/10/winnie-monsod-gma-is-real-president.html

    I wonder if SWS and Pulse still rely on Trends, o have they learned their lessons na?

    I want to emphasize the need for people NOT to rely on the so-called credibility and track record of SWS or Pulse in these surveys because they are not invulnerable to a knowledgeable attack.

    Agreed. If they are still relying on Trends, then I believe the results should be EVEN WORSE for the administration bets. maybe 5 or 6 percentage points worse for GMA’s candidates.

  9. SIDE TOPIC : HEALTH NEWS:

    That ‘old-fashioned’ item called gonorrhea has transformed itself into the new SuperBug . The old antibiotics won’t work anymore.

    Another reminder for condoms/safe sex.

  10. Rego: you’re dropping Roco just because she made a bad analogy? Just because she made an off-the-cuff remark doesn’t mean she’ll pass a bill discriminating against autism.

    Some here are making a mountain out of a molehill with roco’s comment. she apologized, and i forgive her.

    the usual suspects OTOH, are more forgiving towards the election fraudsters.

    besides, her intentions were good– which was to ridicule TU.

  11. Mr. Quezon, III

    I found your article on Cult of the Market interesting. It’s more true in the United States that the free market dictates and influences peoples lives more than the decisions made by politicians. I’m encouraged if such trends has penetrated the Philippine Society because unlike you, I happen to think that economic empowerment through a vibrant free market can do more for the underclass than what the government could ever do by legislative action, which in many cases are inherently discriminatory.

    Nevertheless, you’ve made some good points on the cycles of the ruling class and their influence, but then again, you failed to mention the “carpetbagging elites” in the Philippines(i.e., The Ayalas, The Sorianos, The Escanos, Lucio Tan, etc) and their history, which did more, I think, to influence peoples way of life.

  12. Our politicians have been so consistently crappy for so long that the tendency is for the Filipino (including me at some point) to put its trust in the market. Of course, that’s a cop out and is the basic flaw of the ideology behind the let’s move on sector. I’ve spent my entire working life in the corporate world and i know what the market can and cannot do. Besides, no country, even the United States, has succeeded in developing without the active participation of government, primarily in ensuring that institutions are credible and in working order.

  13. What is the alternative to free markets in economics, politics and memetics, (or ideas)? If it is government, then THAT cult has already been put to the test and debunked in the great social experiments of the late great 20th Century–in the magnificent failures of Fascism and Socialism, which weren’t just instances of Bad Govt, but of whole cultures dominated by governments, as ours is today. Terrorists of the Islamist variety want to retest theocracy. Now a good government is itself necessarily the product of freely functioning markets called campaigns and elections, but only in the sense of how we choose who gets to drive the bus this time around. The whir of the wheels and the energy of the engines, its mileage, and its power–that is the sound the people make from living and competing in a free market of life and ambition, of greed and of love.

    John–I’m with you on this one. The plan seems to be to keep close enough during the campaign so that Tonypet Albano’s “command votes” can credibly claim to have delivered the one-two punch in the end, with help from another Mercy Abad exit poll and the Cult of the Credible Survey Firm. The Palace can’t afford a Hanging Senate because even the House will suddenly sight the 2010 elections by the time it reconvenes in July. For me, the people must make Impeachment and conviction work this year, or else we shall be condemned to another Big Govt GMA in 2010, like Mar Roxas or Noli de Castro or even, Loren Legarda.

  14. Two statements in Q3’s “Cult of the Market” that I find worth repeating to put focus on them:

    (1) by Q3: But where there’s a Datu, there are loyal followers; and the leaders in many respects are reflection of the followers who sustain them.

    … The elite of today is not the elite of yesterday -it is not even the elite of two decades ago. Therefore, if you are disgusted or even mildly critical of what the elite’s up to, then at the very least, precision in what it is, and how it changes, is required.

    (2) by a blogger, quoted in Q3-article:
    “if, as I suspect, CURTIS intends to suggest that we would all be better off returning to the age of collectivism and public duty, of trusting citizens and paternalistic administrators, then he is simply swapping a flawed concept of freedom for no freedom at all.”

  15. As in marriage where money, rather than love, would dominate its future tranquility, even survival, politics occupies a position inferior to that of economics vis a vis the life of a nation. A growling stomach will drown any talk of politics. A prosperous nation has few, if any, political problems (e.g., the United States). Economic despair would lead to violent struggle against the ruling power which could, in turn, leads to anarchy if not immediately resolved (e.g. the former Soviet Union).

    As far as I can see, the “Cult of the Market” is in the natural order of things.

  16. DJB, What keeps coming back over and over again is this image of liberty or freedom “… to make this world a better place”. The “cult of the free market” is looked at with a certain disfavor because it — free market — is focused on “Negative” Liberty — FREEDOM TO live one’s life as one chooses (as long as it does not curtail the freedom of others). Many people (to include probably Abe Margallo and cvj) feel sympathetic to the school of “Positive” Liberty — where all the citizenry are strapped together, each one (especially the moneyed “elite” and the sons and grandsons of landlords of old) making the needed sacrifices (“foregoing the rent-payments” is a common theme) — striving to make the world a better place so that all enjoy the FREEDOM FROM WANT that come from a progressive society.

    It just always seems to be that the theocrats and politicians who espouse “Positive Liberty” simultaneously declare, firstly, that there is primarily only one definition of “the absolute common good”, and secondly, that they — the theocrats and politicians — are the best to define what the common good is because they have the “special gift from the heavens” or “that they understand the masa better”.

  17. What remains scary is the appeal of the “positive libertarians” because your neighbor may just willing to lend his child (and you may even find yourself sympathetic) to a loony who wants to kidnap a handful of 6-year olds for a few hours (and put them in a bus,along with a few live handgrenades) in return for making TV-time and an appeal for “more justice, especially free tuition”.

  18. Markets have evovled ever since man produced more than he needed that he exchanged for something that he wanted. However the use of the word “free market” is a misnomer as this idealized conotation is a myth.

    The existence of present day multilateral institutions for trade, financial flows and labor flows all disprove the idea of free markets. The presence of laws governing competition policy in the developed economies combined with regulations in the financial markets, labor markets and added with enivronmental and safety regulations all point to the myths of free markets.

    Claudia Goldin an economic historian from Harvard points out the history of the 20th century correctly that it was the intervention of the state that took up the cudgels when markets failed disastrously during the repeating crisis of overproduction in markets during the 1920’s. In point of fact the imposition of a 90% top income tax bracket in the U.S. existed for almost a generation and when Reagan entered office the top rate was 70% which he then reduced drastically and imposed quotas on Japan’s autos and computer chips. It was during the war till the 70’s that Goldin points out the middle class in the U.S. was created.

    Markets directed by the firm hand of an effective state created the societies that we refer to as the advanced economies of the world. U.S. Congress enshrined this under the Full Employment Act in 1946. They in effect said that the state could at times abolish the natural law of supply of demand. The Federal Reserve does this from time to time to prevent market crashes.

    It was governments in industrial economies who constructed the measurement standards GDP/GNP to measure output of a rapidly mechanizing industrial society. You needed to establish actual numerical benchmarks to intervene in promoting production, employment and currency stability.

    It was governments inspired by the ideas of the crazy mathematician (FDR called him) Lord Keynes that the word macroeconmics came to be. Using the technology of money transformed into a national faith based currency and the fractional reserve money system (Keynes called gold, “the barbaric relic”)Keynes introduced the idea of the state’s power to create assets from nothing. Governments took to it like ducks to water. Today the world’s best performing stock market in purely quantitative terms is Zimbabwe. Year on year yield is 12,000%. Their GDP has been collapsing for the past few years. Weak states always create inflation to generate taxes. The one flaw in Keynes ideas when applied to emerging market economies that are not fully mechanized integrated domestic economies. Devaluing currencies in import dependent economies on capital and trade creates only the destruction of productive capacites.

    It was the rise of the nation state that Marx failed to foresee that mitigated and arbitrated the Darwinian aspects of the markets then but tranformed itself into the clash of imperial states that was the basis of two devastating world wars and the continuing proxy wars we see today.

    The Philippines is a product of that history. Teddy Roosevelt won a Nobel peace prize in getting the Japanese and the Russians to sign a peace deal and part of that deal implicitly gave the Japanese the right to hang onto Korea and the U.S. to hang onto the Philippines. However the Japanese even though they defeated the Russians in battle were forced to leave Manchuria and its oil resources. The hero of Japan’s war with Russia then was forced to return home in disgrace.

    This set the stage for round two later when FDR imposed an embargo on oil and other strategic goods on Japan. The rest as they say is history.

  19. Why is the U.S. government at war to protect their gas stations in the Middle East. How much blood and ‘coin’ are they spending to maintain their ‘sustainable growth’?

    “The IMF has gathered some shocking statistics: U.S. gasoline consumption as a share of gross domestic product is nearly five times that in the other major industrialized countries; gasoline accounts for 43 percent of U.S. oil consumption vs. 15 percent in other countries; fuel efficiency in America is 25 percent lower than in the European Union and 50 percent lower than in Japan. No wonder the world doubts our seriousness on energy issues.” David Ignatius, Washington Post

  20. If the ‘cult of the market’ were the natural order of things, then business firms, much less multinational corporations, would not exist. That they exist at all means that there are activities that are better (i.e. more cheaply) undertaken outside the market and within the cocoon of organizations. This is the basic insight of economist Ronald Coase for which he won the Nobel Prize in Economics. Both markets and hierarchies have their place.

  21. mlq3, I’m glad you can well imagine the cult or the specter of “anti-politics” hovering in the air nowadays.

    Oh boy, ain’t I seeing too the hate- or fear- mongering against the poor trapos as the term has been so mischievously coined, and then propagated by the media in the Philippines, or the ubiquitous blame game on the politicians (as if politics is a dirty word) and, well, well, on the battered government in almost everything that’s going wrong with the nation. But isn’t the government no more than “the shadow cast by business on society”? Ah certainly, said by one of America’s most important social thinker John Dewey.

    And now, market is even equated with democracy. But anyone who has had the fortune of spending most of his waking hours in some “free enterprise,” eight hours or more a day doing the task he is told to do, would find it quite easily how perfect it is inside the system. Yes, as perfect as fascism or theocracy with brown shirt lieutenants or fawning sacristan mayores seeing to it all the tasks of the day are get done.

    It’s only every time the individual steps out of the daily nightmare of the corporate underworld that he begins again to breathe in the air of democracy that the imperfect government is tasked to keep fresh and clean because as a citizen he is at least free to tell the government to perform those and similar tasks for him and the community.

    At least, outside the great edifices of laissez faire there is yet the potential to create, be free to be oneself and practice democracy. Within their confines, if you are not “the best doer of the month,” you are a gladiator, a sycophant, or a cheat (as when you post a comment like this on company time ha ha).

  22. Rego, as a matter of fact, Sonia has already apologized to the Autism Society of the Philippines and Dang Uy Koe, the President, has accepted the apology. Roco also promised to support the cause of autism if elected to the Senate.

    We all have our rash moments. Who doesn’t?

  23. I found your article on Cult of the Market interesting. It’s more true in the United States that the free market dictates and influences peoples lives more than the decisions made by politicians.

    On the contrary.

    Free market means the prices are dictated by the demand and supply forces and supply is not regulated by the state.

    Production of some agricultural products are regulated by the US government to assure continuity of supply despite the low prices in the market.

    The oversupply causes the prices to go down. Farmers therefore lose and decide to grow other crops. It is at this point when the government subsidies help.

    The government buys the produce to prevent oversupply in the market.

    There is no such thing as free market, or free market economy. There will always be mixed market economy, that is free and controlled. The government intervention is needed for the “common good.” It does not have to nationalise some industries. All the politicians do is to pass a law creating some barriers for entries in the industry thus creating monopoly or oligopoly.

    Somehow, somewhere there will always be invisible hands to manipulate the so-called free market. Where there is a barrier, the black market emerges.

    What are those lobbyists in Congress doing?

  24. Napanood ko is Leah Salonga kagabi sa Les Miserables….and wowww super galing talaga sya! She is just a very good reminder that yes the Filipino can. Nakatuwa rin na pinag salita sya pagkatapos ng show for the fundraising againts AIDS. At binati nya ang mga Pinoy in Tagalog.

  25. We get rankled when our basic rights are restricted or limitations are imposed, but we forgot one of the most important right that is missing, the right to “have the medical care at minimal or no cost at all”.

    This idea came into mind, when the papers all over were trumpheting the success of the First Gentleman dissecting aortic aneurosym operation and my question how about if this thing happens to me? will I get the same life saving surgery? of course I will in my present residence, but how about the rest???

  26. Vic… I have an acquaintance who worked with the Inuits (in the Northwest Territories) for 2 years and she reports that that right you state is something the Inuits do not have… or do not have access to.

  27. Medical care is not a right. Not all employers in the US give full medical insurance to their employees.

    The State provides Medicaid or other health insurance only to the residents if they meet the requirements, resources and disabilities-wise.

    However, there are programs which provide welfare and health care for mothers and children regardless of immigration status. But these benefits are also being looked into.

  28. UPn,
    universal care has been our rights seen I remember, and the aboringines may not be readily extended those rights because of the access and their isolations and you can’t just force the medical personnel to work in the Far North where some place could be access only by air. But these issues are being address. Basic medical care in Canada is Universal. Medications for outpatients may not be available to working citizens, but available to all who have no means of income under the separate govt. drug plans. Children and seniors are covered with minimal cost. And Hospital care and all necessary procedures are Publicly funded.Employers extended care insurance are for non-basic like orthotics, glasses, and medical appliances and others. Access to medical care is Equal or fly south if you can’t wait. and there is no limit as the amount of hospital care. just posting from my own experience, had a a health issue and off work for two years and may have accumulated hospitals and doctors bill in the hundreds of thousands, with MRI CT scans, and hundreds of test and all publicly funded.

  29. Medical care is a right in Canada (unless you are minority-Eskimo in the Northern Territories). Medical care not exactly a right in the US-of-A.

    Doc Bautista (he says please elect him) Candidate Bautista says that medical care is a right in the Philippines (except for a minority of about 500,000 Filipinas a year, many who get butchered, because the government refuses to open up clinics and hospital to the procedure they ask for).

  30. Upn,

    If I’m right that you are alluding to abortion; then that issue will also have to contend with the Constitution as clinics for that will not be allowed.

  31. justice league,

    Glad you brought up that issue too. Abortion is now a right for every woman to demand within the safe period of pregnancy to the life of the mother and that is between the woman and her doctor and for the minor with the the courts and the parents and the doctors and that too is publicly funded. And the Church is out of this issue.

  32. manuB : Whereas the 1987 Constitution explicitly states “…No person shall be imprisoned for debt…” as well as “…Private property shall not be taken for public use without just compensation”, what is written regarding health in the Philippine Constitution is for the State to exert effort, not for the State to guarantee a level of service. In particular:
    “The State shall adopt an integrated and comprehensive approach to health development which SHALL ENDEAVOR to make essential goods, health and other social services available to all the people at affordable cost.”

    […I believe it was John Marzan who needed extraordinary health care 5 or 8 months ago, and I don’t think the Philippine Government nor the Republic-of-the-Philippines health delivery system provided him as much as Vic suggested he got from Canada.]

    [ Vic.. I quickly glanced wikipedia’s entry and medical care is not exactly identified in Canada’s Bill of Rights. What Canada has is a health-delivery program that reflects the country’s ability to pay and which was able to provide quality-service for you when you needed it.]

  33. UPn,
    The Canada Universal Health Care System was long in Existence before our Charter of Rights and Freedoms which was entrenched in the constitution in l982. The l960 Bill of Rights was a statute because before repatriation of our Constitution In 1982, only the British Parliament can amend the BNA Act. And the l960 Bills of Rights were not enforceable to Provincial Governments which administer Health Care, only for Federal statutes . It may not be a right in a sense how we equate rights like the Speech Freedom, Right to Life, Mobility Rights, etc., but under the new charter we consider it a right under the Equality Rights.

    Equality Rights:
    15. (1) Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.

    This is the Equality Rights Provision of our l982 Charter which now becomes the basis for the challenges to repeal non-conforming laws (inconsistent) and enactment of new ones.

    Means that Health Care should be provided to all, Equally, regardless of one’s ability to Pay. And Luckily paying almost half of our earning to taxes, the Governments are able to provide quality care. But I’m not complaining, because I’m a beneficiary and so a lot others who otherwise would have just to bear it. thanks..

  34. the Canada Universal Health Care System was lonG..

    That’s Canada. Arnold S. is still proposing a universal health care system of California.

  35. With regard to the discussion on markets, one misconception is that to free up the economy results in a mere strongest survive, weak die paradigm. The truth is that the countries with the most open (and consequently most successful) of economies are those that can and do afford lavish welfare spending. Freeing up economies and social spending actually complement each other. This has to do, logically, with the fact that those who have incomes now have the wherewithal to spend for welfare, spurred on by the motivation of a greater need for more government insurance.

    The same thing goes with regard to environmental policies. A good start to encourage better environmental policies is to get rid of protectionist measures (particularly in developed countries) that result in subsidizing (and thereby encouraging excessive) farming, fishing, and energy use.

    It’s not even true that free economies result in weaker governments and States. Multinationals would always be under the power of governments and always in fear of their consumers. That’s why they spend so much money in lobbying and advertising. Just by mere taxation a government can end a multinational’s presence in a country, as some of our Asian neighbors have done.

    Freeing up trade and markets is quite beneficial and helps poor countries and the poor in them. Having said that, nobody who works in trade thinks there is such a thing as a actual free market. The thing does not exist and even the WTO, the main engine for liberalizing trade, does not ask for it. That’s why the strongest of trade advocates are also the strongest advocates for competition policy (and good governance), recognizing the fact that markets can and do fail. Freeing up markets is just a policy tool, albeit a great tool, that either can be used badly or well. If it ends up helping the Philippines, them I’m all for it.

  36. I provided a report to a group inside PanAmerican Health Ortanization that contrasts the US-of-A health delivery scheme to Canada, Japan, UK and Australia, among others. As the Ca t mentions, the US-of-A has not yet bought into the concept of universal health care.

    But there is a US Federal Law which requires all hospitals to provide emergency care to anyone — literally anyone, like my undocumented-alien Polish friend who mishandled a power table saw which ripped through his palm and 3 fingers. [US hospitals will deny you preventive medicine if you can’t pay; hospitals can not deny you emergency care (stitches and casts, even an angioplasty if necessary). This is poor economics, but right now this is the status of US-of-A health delivery policy.]

    Canadian health coverage is universal but there are bottlenecks at certain points especially in regards the more sophisticated medical procedures. Pay-for-service is becoming acceptable (except in Quebec — still not allowed by the Quebec government). The Canadian economy is strong so many of the middle-class and upper class head South to US (or to other countries) to pay for certain medical procedures that are not covered-for-free by Canadian universal health care structure. And for boob jobs and sex-change operations, Thailand is a prime destination.

  37. Here’s something definitely crucial to overseas voting that probably needs some urgent attention.

    Personally found out that in applying for dual citizenship as prerequisite for overseas voting, it is much easier to apply overseas rather than in the old home country, even granting that you have all the documentary requirements to support your case.

    Funny that even our local immigration staff members would rather you apply overseas rather than with them. And they would tell you so.

    Is this an unintended admission of incompetence or lack of any sense of public service on the part of immigration public servants?

    What is the recourse of those allowed to vote overseas but find themselves in the old home country when elections roll in? At any given time, one can imagine the determinable number of those who are back in the old country for a variety of reasons.

  38. …a privilege, and not a right.

    that’s what lea thinks…of course, not on medical care but on the kind of work she does…

    rego, check out lea’s multiply site. i’ll give the link next to this post…

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