The ploy to keep the Speaker loyal

My Arab News column for this week, The Ploy to Keep the Speaker Loyal, further refines an earlier blog entry on the revival of the constitutional amendments plan. The point of my column is that while many observers think the revived Federalism scheme is the same old script reused for the same old purposes, a larger purpose may be in the Palace’s mind. Constitutional change is being dangled to entice the Speaker to patch things up with the Palace. The Speaker himself, like the old pro that he is, is non-commital to keep his options open: De Venecia welcomes Charter change talk but not this year. In his blog, Mon Casiple says the Charter Change revival could be all talk -or a sign of darker things to come.

The column was written before I had a chance to interview Speaker Jose de Venecia, Jr. on my show last night. He’d already spent the day sounding fairly belligerent: JdV: End govt corruption: Statements hint at possible split with President. His son was certainly doing his best to foster the impression his father wasn’t in the chirpiest of moods: Arroyo admin won’t change, says Speaker’s son.

On my show, he waved a document at the camera and said, he was preparing a letter to the President, urging her to purge her cabinet of corrupt officials, curb smuggling, and, if the peek I got was correct, somehow reform the pork barrel system. JDV talking of reform and fighting corruption at the very least will probably have people rolling in the aisles, but like most things, there’s an element of self-preservation at work, too. He pointed out that he was quite appalled, during the last election, to see how mercenary both candidates and the electorate had become. And he went into a rather lengthy description of how, unless the spiraling costs of campaigning weren’t reduced, officials would have to raid the public treasury and break rules just to be able to run for, and keep, office.

To be sure, this limited awareness had its origins in his facing an unusual situation, for him, last May. He normally runs unopposed. The Palace is said to have strongly backed the candidacy of his rival who spent oodles and which led to JDV having to spend oodles, too, to be re-elected. And so, the Speaker said, “I have committed my share of sins” but this all getting too much, already. What JDV has come to realize is the same kind of realization the older generation of premartial law politicians came to realize when faced with Ferdinand Marcos. By golly, the guy recognizes no limits. The Speaker, it seems to me, is increasingly frightened by the prospects of a President he strongly supported, giving him the treatment she formerly used to to dish out only to their mutual opponents.

He is a man in search of a mission, because his old career as the Fella Who Gets All Folks to Get Along is obviously facing a dead end. His choice is a stark one: total surrender, which means maintaining his position but without power, in effect becoming a decoration, or fighting it out, and risking it all, when his problem is, he may have lost the means (the numbers) without which he can’t expect to put up a good fight.

The Great Consensus-builder is, I think, ill-equipped to fight it out, mano-a-mano, with a President, much less the present incumbent. Alone of his contemporaries, among his political peers, de Venecia by all accounts, has no personal enemies. His fellow politicians on all sides of the political fence all think he’s a nice guy. And that, precisely, is his problem. Whatever his other defects, having a mean streak is not one of them.

He is not a fighter, by instinct, he’s a consensus-builder and what’s more, in the traditional mold, who lacks the imagination to think that certain political behavior is even possible (a liability many traditional politicians of the old school suffer from, with regards to the President: up to now I keep hearing some of these leaders express shock and horror at the President’s habit of dropping in on the wakes of her deceased critics, which leaves old-fashioned oppositionists at a loss on what to do or say, except, well, express shock and dismay after the fact -I think the President derives a kind of malicious satisfaction from doing such things because it’s a reminder of the residual awe in which even her critics continue hold her office).

So one moment he sounds like he’s fed up, has had enough; the next moment he’s literally pleading for the President to seize the day and become a crusader for good government; then the Speaker’s mood deflates again as he says he has to give her this last chance but… but… What? I don’t think he knows, or to be more precise, he doesn’t want to have to reach the point of no return. Or admit that point was reached last week, when the President showed she had 180 congressmen in her pocket and forced to pick between her and him, JDV’s fellow congressmen would pick her and not him (though being on the whole, not cut out for battle, either, they’d like to keep them both).

John Nery in Inquirer Current, says the Speaker’s headed for a fall. In this light, the above could be his Swan Song.

Meanwhile, is the inoculation in danger of failing? An article in the Inquirer two days ago –House to pursue rules vs bogus impeach rap–majority leader– gives a hint:

Majority Leader Arthur Defensor said on Monday the lower chamber would proceed with key amendments to the impeachment rules, essentially to keep lawmakers from having to deal with apparently bogus complaints.

The changes — which would allow the consolidation of two or more complaints before they reached the committee on rules and included in the order of business — was scheduled for plenary deliberations last week.

But Defensor, the main author of the revision, withdrew the schedule to avoid being accused of trying to influence the impeachment complaint filed by lawyer Roel Pulido against President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo…

..The amendments created a stir at the plenary hall among legislators loyal to the President on Monday night last week, another senior member of the majority told the Inquirer in a separate interview.

Amid the suspense on whether Speaker Jose de Venecia Jr. would refer the Pulido complaint to the House committee on justice, the Arroyo allies asked the majority leadership to withdraw the amendments from the order of business.

“They thought we were going to change the rules so a stronger impeachment complaint could be consolidated with the Pulido complaint,” the congressman said. “They even wanted us to adjourn the session at the height of the budget deliberations.”

This account was confirmed by another administration lawmaker who played a major role during the plenary deliberations on the proposed 2008 national budget. Both lawmakers asked not to be named because of the sensitive nature of their positions.

When the opposition says it will file a new, improved complaint, the odds still favor the original Pulido complaint; but an opposition impeachment complaint would open up the opportunity for the House to amend its rules on impeachment (going beyond what Defensor’s proposed) or the filing of a case in the Supreme Court.

RG Cruz points out the Palace is not helping itself by stonewalling reporter’s questions. The cabinet officials who do speak up aren’t helping matters any more than the President’s Congressional allies: Atienza says ‘cash gifts’ are normal fare in Arroyo Palace.

The Palace’s stonewalling, as RG Cruz puts it, comes at a time when economic developments seem to have slipped under the radar, to emerge as threats to the Palace propaganda line that the economy is super duper and the Peso’s appreciation is fantastic. RP balance of payments slips into deficit in September, comes the news, and there is a concern over the prices of basic commodities: Yap orders SRA to release sugar reserves to stabilize prices so that the administration has had to admit there are problems beyond back-biting within its own coalition (and squabbles that keep requiring presidential intervention). As the news yesterday put it, Cabinet tackles ‘major risks’:

National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) acting Director General Augusto Santos said an emergency Cabinet meeting has been called by the President to discuss the possible measures government may undertake to mitigate the ill effects of these threats.

Santos said three threats–rising oil prices, decreasing value of overseas Filipino workers (OFW) dollar remittances that may crimp the spending of beneficiaries, and reduced exports–may be attributed to the strength of the peso.

Santos said a stronger peso is good for the economy, however, in terms of making imports cheaper, decreasing the amount to be paid for debt service, and increasing investor confidence.

The Neda has already prepared economic simulations and recommendations, but the documents were not yet available to journalists as of press time.

He added that some of these measures may include the reduction of tariffs for oil imports, but the trigger price will still be determined by the Cabinet after today’s meeting.

This news coming during the opening of the Christmas season, is not politically-beneficial for the Palace. In its editorial, the Business Mirror editorial explains why:

As the peso strayed into historic territory last week, reaching seven-year highs and flirting with the 43 level, the exchange continued to dismay even more overseas-based workers: in one case that found echoes in many households, a minor construction project, projected to cost P25,000 two months ago, suddenly became too expensive for an OFW’s $500 remittance, budgeted way back. As a result of the project’s deferment, the worker found his $500 merely stood at over P21,000 when it reached Manila. And so on and on, similar tales of financial woe can be heard from the OFW sector (workers and beneficiaries) as the robust local unit continues to hold its own.

Meanwhile, the other sector hardest-hit by the strong peso, the exporters, have not stopped complaining about how the impact of a steady appreciation has gouged their pocketbooks, forcing dozens to either close shop temporarily in hopes of regaining their bearing after some time, or downscale operations and thus put thousands out of job.

To be sure, the executive has lined up a series of remedial measures to blunt the impact on the badly hit sectors, but still the “massacre” continues. To underscore the gravity of the situation, Tuesday’s Cabinet meeting was set solely on the major economic risks faced by the nation in light of recent developments, and as this paper’s banner story on Tuesday underscored, three of these risks–rising oil prices, declining value of the OFW remittances even as their volumes surge, and export cuts–were all somehow tied to the peso, albeit in varying ways.

A few months back the Bangko Sentral warned exporters to brace for a stronger peso and counseled them to seek shelter in hedge facilities that had long been there, while Malacañang directed state financial institutions to seek ways to prop up their sector.

The situation of exporters could get even more challenging, meanwhile, because as Trade Secretary Peter Favila reminds, they’re bound to come up against stricter regulations in the global markets arising from the creation of exclusive trade blocs.

Certainly there’s no way the “hurting” sectors of the economy, such as the OFWs and the exporters, can be separated by some firewall from the rest. One consequence of OFW families getting less for their dollars is that they will spend less, thus crimping the other productive sectors of the economy. As for exporters closing shop, imagine the impact of that on jobs and on the overall GDP projections.

Of course any administration has to do a balancing act handling the economy; but the timing is bad, if only because the holidays might be a little less cheery and it comes at the heels of a new round of scandals that won’t go away. As Manuel Buencamino points out in his column, one reason the scandals have political traction, is that with 2010 in mind, both politicians and the public aren’t inclined to be left holding the bag. Since Buencamino tackles why China’s government-owned corporations are being courted by the administration, it would do well to keep up to speed with developments in the Middle Kingdom: High stakes for China as party congress begins and Missing the barefoot doctors.

The Inquirer editorial tackles Pampanga Governor Ed Panlilio’s taking the money -and why he should return it, even if no one will accept it.

big mango explains why the revived Charter Change proposal doesn’t leave him thrilled.

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202 comments

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  1. “I’ll stop sponsoring those “other girls not deserving””

    RAM:agree with your wife!One of them is Her Highness!lol

    • Dirk Pitt on October 17, 2007 at 8:52 pm

    jdv now going to his closet to change his coat? why should that be a surprise? that’s one of the oldest games in philippine politics. it’s infested by these chameleons through and through. just one reminder for him: remember enrile and santiago. they are having the time of their life fattening themselves in the trough, along with, to a lesser extent, Joker.

    i know the gloria-lovers here will despise this guy since he is now proclaiming himself a gma enemy, the club (in desperation) has to attack him while thumbing their nose to protect them from the stench coming out of the palace near the pasig river. a letter…, by golly. it probably would be recommendations based on inside information. who will reject it but the gullible, pushover let’s move on bunch in this blog. shame, shame, shame.

    • qwert on October 17, 2007 at 9:10 pm

    ram,
    we are looking for a child preferably near us, so that we can visit him/her from time to time to find out more what is needed. Maybe I’ll pay them (WorldVision) a visit, I am planning to go to Manila after All Saints Day.

    • frombelow on October 17, 2007 at 9:25 pm

    i felt this Febraury 10 1986. On January 2001, I was eating lucnh, I also felt this strange feeling. Would you belive I am feeling it now again.

    • ramrod on October 17, 2007 at 9:25 pm

    I have to say goodnight guys. Another long day tomorrow. 🙂

  2. ” I am not saying that what happened last week was justifiable. I am not saying we should condone it. All I am saying is that there is context around it. This culture of political patronage has been around for quite some time and will continue to be around for as long as voters continue to hound their elected leaders for all kinds of assistance.

    What made what happened last week galling was the brazenness and shamelessness of it all. In short, bastusan at garapalan na talaga.Bong Austero”

    On the way to self redemption…hopefully.

  3. “and in general, a lot of political momentum was lost when the senate went on vacation…”

    the understatement of the year, if i ever heard one.

    i’d like to crucify each of the junketing senators if i can. it seems Gloria’s political survival has been nothing but one reprieve after another.

    • cvj on October 17, 2007 at 9:36 pm

    frombelow, i hope you’d make it three out of three.

    • Nonoy on October 17, 2007 at 9:45 pm

    “If we look around the garbage dumps, we see an emergence of a different species, one that subsists on the garbage of others, leftover, thrown away food from the local fastfood restaurants.”

    When FPJ said that the biggest issues facing the country were “breakfast, lunch and dinner”, well-to-do people just laughed at him.

    • qwert on October 17, 2007 at 9:53 pm

    “i felt this Febraury 10 1986. On January 2001, I was eating lucnh, I also felt this strange feeling. Would you belive I am feeling it now again “- frombelow

    strange feeling indeed and if I may add this strange news:

    “Reyes said a protest march against the alleged payoffs and bribes will be staged Thursday afternoon. Marchers are expected to assemble at Fort Bonifacio at 2 p.m. and begin a motorcade from there.” – GMANews.TV

    Isn’t it strange that the assembly point is a military camp?

  4. “i’d like to crucify each of the junketing senators if i can. it seems Gloria’s political survival has been nothing but one reprieve after another.”

    The CAYETANO clan is in Geneva for the family junket:

    Sen.Pia Cayetano
    Sen.Allan Peter Cayetano
    Rep.Cayetano from Taguig (wife of Allan Peter).

    Official business can wait! We are on holiday!

    • supremo on October 17, 2007 at 10:16 pm

    mlq3,

    Is there a plan to sell episodes of The Explainer on dvd?

    • frombelow on October 17, 2007 at 10:19 pm

    I am serious.

    i felt this Februury 10 1986. On January 2001, I was eating lucnh, I also felt this strange feeling. Would you believe I am feeling it now again.

    Another, during those times, uneasy peace reigned. as if all are waiting for something.

    Dont you feel it now people. We are not agitated but subconncioulsy we are waiting for something.

    i felt that Februury 10 1986. On January 2001, I was eating lucnh, I also felt that strange feeling. And I am feeling it now again.

    • qwert on October 17, 2007 at 10:33 pm

    Arroyo present during cash distribution–Manila solon

    By Norman Bordadora, Christian V. Esguerra, Dona Pazzibugan
    Inquirer
    Last updated 10:12pm (Mla time) 10/17/2007

    MANILA, Philippines — A preacher in the House of Representatives has added his voice to those bearing witness to the alleged distribution of funds to lawmakers and local government officials in Malacañang.

    Manila Representative Bienvenido Abante, listed in the House website as a “Minister of Gospel,” admitted on Wednesday to receiving five bundles of P100,000 each, or a total of P500,000, from a person wearing a barong (formal Filipino shirt) — one of many involved in the distribution — during a breakfast hosted by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo last Thursday.

    Abante said Arroyo herself was present during the distribution of cash.

    • justice in waiting on October 17, 2007 at 10:53 pm

    To be honest when Gloria started as President and before I have any knowledge of allegations of abuse, and corruptions under her administration I used to admire her especially during her State visit in U.S. where she delivered an address that Terrorism are sometimes caused by a group of people left marginalized, and at that time, although her Presidency was questionable, that she will dedicate her contested mandate to alleviate the plight of the poor. But scandals after scandals, and how she helped covered up the people of her administration of all allegations of corruptions against them, then my initial belief of her intentions has now changed.

    Starting with how she threw patronage to the people who helped her in her quest, putting them in positions where they are able to influence her decisions toward their own personal or business interests, allegations of how her own relatives suddenly have acquired assets beyond their normal and legal incomes and how she make sure that legal oppositions and media critical to her government are muzzled, then I can only conclude that she is no different from all other Corrupt Presidents before her and a President being used by people around her…And it will take a lot of redemptions on her part to make me change my mind..

    • cvj on October 17, 2007 at 11:00 pm

    frombelow, so am i.

  5. “i felt that February 10 1986. On January 2001, I was eating lunch, I also felt that strange feeling. And I am feeling it now again.FromBelow”

    THEN

    Marcos Won’t Step Down!-Malacanang

    Although Marcos held an inauguration ceremony at Malacañang Palace on February 25, it was boycotted by foreign ambassadors (with the exception, in an apparently unwitting gaffe, of a new Soviet ambassador). It was, for the Marcoses, the last, pathetic hurrah. Advised by a United States senator, Paul Laxalt, who had close ties to Reagan, to “cut and cut cleanly,” Marcos realized that he had lost United States support for any kind of arrangement that could keep him in power. By that evening, the Marcoses had quit the palace that had been their residence for two decades and were on their way to exile in the United States.

    NOW:

    “Arroyo won’t step down – Palace”
    10/17/2007 | 07:04 PM

    “Malacañang rejected the call of some senators for President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to resign and turnover the government to Vice President Noli de Castro following alleged instability and threats of a civil war.

    Press Secretary Ignacio Bunye said Mrs Arroyo has been elected until 2010 and she would step down after her term ends.

    “We maintain that the Armed Forces are loyal to their commander in chief and they will adhere to the chain of command and the President has a mandate to serve up to 2010,” he said.He believes that the military would not resort to any unconstitutional means to force the President out of office.

    Senators Francis Pangilinan and Aquilino Pimentel Jr. called for Arroyos’s resignation to avert civil war. GMA NEWS TV”

    • mlq3 on October 17, 2007 at 11:04 pm
      Author

    supremo, i think you can order individual episodes, i;ve been lobbying, without success, to have them post all episodes on youtube.

  6. manolo: what are your views on the idea of an “Interim President Noli De Castro”?

    • mlq3 on October 17, 2007 at 11:27 pm
      Author

    equalizer: since i’ve been pointing out that one apparent consensus tha’s emerged is the public prefers a constitutional solution to things, then this means accepting the vice-president is the constitutionally-ordained successor. the refusal of civil society and some political groups to accept this in 2005 helped prolong the president’s stay. since i don’t think there is much public support for an extra constitutional solution, i think the vp should be reassured that there’s a consensus that he’s an acceptable successor.

    i don’t get the “interim” part, though. unless it means he should give some sort of pledge not to run for the presidency in 2010.

  7. manolo,as always,thank you so much.

    “Pimentel said anti-Arroyo forces would agree to Vice President Noli de Castro as a caretaker president until 2010.

    “(President Arroyo) should resign and turn over the government to Vice President de Castro as caretaker until 2010,” Pimentel said.GMA NEWS”

    • frombelow on October 17, 2007 at 11:37 pm

    the feeling is getting stronger, i tell you people. THIS IS IT. IT IS NOW. ROLLING LIKE A SNOWBALL. I AM SERIOUS. DONT YOU FEEL IT GUYS?

  8. From below:

    to reach tipping point:

    1) we need JDV to take a real strong stand
    2)Civil society and political groups to accept the idea of Noli as caretaker president till 2010.
    3)support of the military
    4)CBCP taking a stronger stand.
    5)one more big scandal exposed(CyberEd?)

    • frombelow on October 17, 2007 at 11:45 pm

    on february 1986, people were angry but resigned. Marcos had just won the elections. Until i was informed at about 5 pm by a journalist friend that Enrile holed himself inside aguinaldo.
    january 2001, people were angry but helpless. Until…
    Now, i really cant explain. the emotions that i felt during those two incidents. iam felling it now.
    Will something happen. I REALLY DONT KNOW.

  9. from below:you are on the right track…

    • frombelow on October 17, 2007 at 11:49 pm

    ONE THING, I DONT FEEL LIKE THIS ON FEBRUARY 2006. THE SO-CALLED NIGHT WHEN SOME SEGMENTS OF MILITARY PERUSADED THE AFP LEADERSHIP RO WITHDRA THIER SUPPORT TO…

    THIS FEELING IS STRNAGE.
    ONLY FEB 1986 AND JANUARY 2001.

  10. Agree with Mlq3. Gina wields great influence on her husband more than any other person close to him.

    • supremo on October 18, 2007 at 12:30 am

    rego,

    There’s an event at the Phil. Consulate this Saturday. It’s about Fil-Am organizations. It’s a whole day affair. Ambet Ocampo is guest speaker. This is a good way to network. Free food the whole day.

    • rego on October 18, 2007 at 12:38 am

    I’m leaning towards scholarchips from now on, you know the website qwert came up with? worldvision.
    —————-
    Ramrod,

    No I havent seen the site.

    Our scholarship program is run by an informal or casual group of people.

    We designated 6 people from among us to be the execom. The execom drafted the rules. The execom eventuall became teh screening committe that screen the aplicants.

    We also designated a fund manager who manage the funds and give us financial report every time a new contribution arrives.

    Then there is revolving a scholar manager that attend to the needs of the scholar. He conduct one-on-one meeting every month with teh scholar and discuss family, lovelife , social life, extra curricular activities and anything under the sun that can affect the scholars academic performance. Its something like a holistic approach.. The scholar manager regularly sent a monthly report to all donors.

    There were 6 fund solicitor all over teh world and in Manila.

    And there is even 3 ambassador of goodwill, one in NYC, one in Sidney and one in Vienna. These are people who travels a lot due to the nature of the job. One is a UN inspector, one is a psychiatrist that work in a very prominent pharmaceutical company. Their job is to meet as many peopel as they can during their travels and introduce the scholarship program.

    The scholar has his own ATM card. The account oepend by the schorlarship program. The fund manager trasfers the monthly stipend every month. Th efudn manger is based in Guam.

    We are now on our 8th year and has produce to scholars thatis working now. How ever with our unique way of doing it. we cannot manage more than 2 scholars.

    Everybody has their jobs to attent too.

    I think Vic is involved on scholarship too. You can also get inputs from him.

    • Shaman of Malilipot on October 18, 2007 at 12:43 am

    “jdv has built a career on trying to make everybody happy.” mlq3

    Actually, that’s the tragedy of JDV. He never learned the maxim: “You can’t please everybody”. A career built on trying to please everybody is bound to fail, as JDV’s is failing now.

    As a politician, the only way to really succeed is to serve the interest of the people and make them happy, at least most of them, even at the risk of displeasing other politicians, including the President.

    Look at Rep. Tony Cuenco now, publicly agonizing between telling the people the whole truth about the bribery last Thursday or hurting Gloria and his fellow congressmen. What kind of a public servant is he? Siding with the people is always a no-brainer.

    • tonio on October 18, 2007 at 12:45 am

    equalizer:

    1) we need JDV to take a real strong stand

    not gonna happen.

    2)Civil society and political groups to accept the idea of Noli as caretaker president till 2010.

    not gonna happen. noli is an outsider who cannot be trusted to support their agenda, in other words, he is no somos

    3)support of the military

    not gonna happen. she’s got them in her pocket.

    4)CBCP taking a stronger stand.

    it might happen, but do you really want this to? the days of Cardinal Sin and the political church are over, let’s not resurrect them.

    5)one more big scandal exposed(CyberEd?)

    this could very well happen, but as soon as this leaves the front pages, then what?

    • rego on October 18, 2007 at 12:46 am

    So you are our resident haciendero? 70 hectares, wow!
    ——
    But if you divide that to 10 sibling its no longer an “hacienda”.

    And we were not born just waiting for the produce of that farm to fall on our mouths we worked on that farm too. I remember my father required me to plant coconuts on my own in one hectare of land before I left for manila for college.

    Plus with the political conditions in Masbate, its really hard to optimized the farm and get more money from it.

    That is why I have to really work my ass off here.

    • ay_naku on October 18, 2007 at 12:46 am

    frombelow, magdilang-anghel ka sana.

    • rego on October 18, 2007 at 12:47 am

    supremo :
    rego,

    There’s an event at the Phil. Consulate this Saturday. It’s about Fil-Am organizations. It’s a whole day affair. Ambet Ocampo is guest speaker. This is a good way to network. Free food the whole day.
    ——————————————

    Thanks supremo, if I finsih this one project by Friday. I may go.

    • supremo on October 18, 2007 at 12:54 am

    mlq3,

    I can’t find The Explainer video in Starry Starry Store. Is there another website?

    • supremo on October 18, 2007 at 1:02 am

    rego,

    The event is Bayanihan sa Amerika. There’s a schedule in pcgny.net

    • Pilipinoparin on October 18, 2007 at 1:14 am

    Per Regos’s post…..
    “Our scholarship program is run by an informal or casual group of people.

    We designated 6 people from among us to be the execom. The execom drafted the rules. The execom eventuall became teh screening committe that screen the aplicants.

    We also designated a fund manager who manage the funds and give us financial report every time a new contribution arrives.

    Then there is revolving a scholar manager that attend to the needs of the scholar. He conduct one-on-one meeting every month with teh scholar and discuss family, lovelife , social life, extra curricular activities and anything under the sun that can affect the scholars academic performance. Its something like a holistic approach.. The scholar manager regularly sent a monthly report to all donors.

    There were 6 fund solicitor all over teh world and in Manila.

    And there is even 3 ambassador of goodwill, one in NYC, one in Sidney and one in Vienna. These are people who travels a lot due to the nature of the job. One is a UN inspector, one is a psychiatrist that work in a very prominent pharmaceutical company. Their job is to meet as many peopel as they can during their travels and introduce the scholarship program.

    The scholar has his own ATM card. The account oepend by the schorlarship program. The fund manager trasfers the monthly stipend every month. Th efudn manger is based in Guam.

    We are now on our 8th year and has produce to scholars thatis working now. How ever with our unique way of doing it. we cannot manage more than 2 scholars.

    Everybody has their jobs to attent too.

    I think Vic is involved on scholarship too. You can also get inputs from him.”

    Congratulations, Rego. That is a very noble thing to do for our kababayan.

    I think many Pilipinos have similar groups/organizations both locally and internationally managed. We have almost similar group, a high school alumni group which organized an alumni scholarship foundation more than thirty years ago and is still growing. Some members are suggesting that we form a global scholarship foundation in addition to the original local foundation for the benefit of our poor alumni and present students. However, this is still in the embryologic stage and no one knows if this will become true entity in the near future. Global foundation will surely help in the logistics since most of our donors are fil-ams, canadians, australians and OFWs.

    I think organizations like Rego’s together with remittances from OFWs are a great help to our kababayans.

    • Shaman of Malilipot on October 18, 2007 at 1:17 am

    Rego, it’s good to know that we share two commonalities -both of us are Bicolanos and come from landed families.

    My mother inherited land, much bigger than your 70 has., but I’m not saying how much. She tried to resist land reform, but to her consternation and eternal disappointment, I sided with the tenants. I always believe that land belongs to the tiller. Now, I’m happy to see that our former tenants are leading prosperous lives.

    I hated living off the toil of the tenants, especially on inherited land. But in your case, it’s okay since you worked the land yourself.

  11. If Gloria does resign from her bogus presidency, de Castro has to step in till 2010.

    I’m prepared to go for de Castro just to get Gloria out.

    I don’t believe he can do worse than Gloria. Impossible to do worse than Gloria.

    • rego on October 18, 2007 at 1:35 am

    Shaman,

    I am also in favor of land reform. For simple reason na kung hindi naman maasikaso ng mga landlord yung lupa. Sayang naman kung naktiwangwang lang. Marming nagugutom eh.

    And I remember DAR visited my father visited several times. But when the land was distributed subdivided to the siblings and the apos. walang ng natira sa DAR.

    • vic on October 18, 2007 at 2:26 am

    rego,

    you mentioned our charitable works among my townmates in North America and now it involves all townmates worldwide, thanks to internet.

    ours involves mostly giving back to our town (see alimodian.net) mostly in infrastructure, like helping finance a barangay centre or chapel, and lately my townmates in Northeast and western states started the project of supplying thousands of books and a Reading center in town and also distributing the books among barangays. Its been going since l986 and we also take pleads for donations among the town’s civic citizen and raise funds for them, mostly by contributions from our town mates here that keeps growing with later arrivals.

    but we are open to suggestion among town mates and even consider some from our LGU officials. And I believe we are making some impacts…
    (posted this on the other thread)hope MLQ doens’t mind..

    • tess on October 18, 2007 at 3:33 am

    Are seeing the last days of Gloria?

    • tess on October 18, 2007 at 3:34 am

    Are we seeing the last days of Gloria?

    • watchful eye on October 18, 2007 at 4:01 am

    it seems the only question to resolve now is what ice cream flavor to buy. hehe

    masyado kasi niyang ginagago ang mga pinoy, eh.

    Gago nga ba ang Pinoy? Tingnan natin ang susunod na kabanata.

    Sino sa palagay nyo mga pre ko ang mag-ooffer sa kanya ng pardon?

    hi Ben, you’re ok?

    • Bencard on October 18, 2007 at 4:43 am

    sino ba ang nagimbento ng mga salitant “ginagago”, “bastusan”, o “binabastos”? tila sa tingin ko e si mestisong cayetano. ang gago ay talagang gago, hindi na kailangang gaguhin. kailan pa ba naging pino and pulitika natin. mabuti na nga and bastusan kesa patayan, di ba?
    marami ang nagkukunwaring matalino at marangal sa atin pero usisain mo ang kanilang pananalita at gawain, walang makabuluhang laman at magaspang pa sa papel de liha.

  12. THIS FEELING IS STRNAGE.
    ONLY FEB 1986 AND JANUARY 2001.

    Take alka selzter. Kabag lang yan.

    • sosorry4u on October 18, 2007 at 6:20 am

    Don’t you know that Gloria is two or three steps ahead of any situation she had been in? Mas magagaling ang mga thinktanks ni Glow kaysa sa mga oppositionists. The end of the tunnel is still far far away for Glow. Luli

    • DinaPinoy on October 18, 2007 at 7:29 am

    hindi charter change ang kailangan ng pinas.

    CHARACTER change – as in moral character.

    kahit paalisin si gloria at si noli ang maupo, the ussual casts are still in place.

    di ba sabi eh hindi naman si marcos ang magnanakaw kundi ang mga nakapaligid sa kanya.

    si erap mabait, maka masa. hindi siya ang corrupt. ang kurap as si atong ang, chavit, jose velarde et al, pero nunca, hindi nagnakaw nga kaban ng bayan si erap.

    pwede ring sabihin, hindi si gloria ang magnanakaw. it’s the characters around her. and the circus goes on and on……

    • Proud to be Tsinoy on October 18, 2007 at 8:28 am

    cvj

    It is not that I do not agree with the liberal labor laws that I mentioned. It is just that at this stage of the country’s economic development, you cannot afford to shoo away jobs that will be generated if the investor’s perception regarding these laws are less “liberal”. Of course, I am not saying this is the only component in attracting foreign investors, but a lot of negartive perception that I hear from friends outside the country always starts off with these labor strikes. That’s the first thing that comes to mind when you talk to these people.

    As a people, we can afford to have these democratic ideals only when the country has become strong economically. Why do we have a lot of people leaving the country. It isn;t just because the jobs do not pay well, mind you. It’s really because there’s not enough jobs out there to begin with.

    • watchful eye on October 18, 2007 at 8:28 am

    Did you try to maximize the fine print on the bags?

    It says: THIS IS WHERE YOUR TAXES ARE BEING SPENT.

    (and some were in renminbi denomination, oops.)

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