Wotcha burng 2nite?

That’s a text message sent by youths to other youths in France, in this story in the Manila Times. Today’s readings include:

ABS-CBN.com publishes the text of a four-part ANC series on the Consultative Commission for Charter Change, which makes for good reading.

The Speaker handily reasserts his leadership in a chamber that happens to include the returning prodigal son of the President.

Dong Puno delves into how collegiate basketball players are recruited; Alex Magno has a bone to pick with the Palace over legislated wage increases.

A reader sent me this link, to an article by Panjee Lopez in the Star. Read it:

A few weeks ago, someone else wrote me a letter of a similar theme. She said she wants to do what’s best for her children but corruption in government has forced her to doctor her books, to keep her little business from shutting down. Again she chided me for being too idealistic. A wealthy friend minimizes paying off government officials in the line of business. She tells me I can go ahead and save the world but she’s a businesswoman. But in my head I think yes, and a mother, too.

Much ado in the blogosphere. Newsboy is setting up shop in a new location, and announces that ANC reporter RG Cruz has a public blog He’s not keen, to put it mildly, on the Citizen’s Congress opening today). Philippine Commentary weighs in on the Citizen’s Congress, as discussed in my column yesterday, and concludes,

But let’s not kid ourselves. This thing is going nowhere with the public if it becomes a Leftist Ranting Session on US Imperialism, domestic feudalism, and bureaucrat capitalism, a soapbox for every preacher of the religion of resentment to get up on and castigate the dastardly, dastardly US-Arroyo dictatorship. No matter how many nuns and priests show up. People aren’t stupid.

Amen to that.

Edwin Lacierda reacts to the President’s most recent speech, calling it a rant.

The Unlawyer dissects the Visiting Forces Agreement. Apropos of the scandal engulfing American soldiers accused of raping a Filipina, Jove Francisco reports on the curiously coincidental appearance of American diplomats at the Palace, peddling increased aid.

A curious story: Journeyist says that Bro. Eli Soriano of “Ang Dating Daan” fame, has asked his followers to prepare to march on the Palace. The reason is what he views as his church’s persecution by the government on behalf of the Iglesia ni Cristo.

Leon Kilat blogs about the 102nd summary (or vigilante) execution in Cebu City. JJ Disini comments on the PCIJ case and suggests that,

While the folks at the PCIJ complied with the TRO by taking the offending post down, I believe they violated it when they directed others to view it from an alternate source. Don’t believe me? Here’s the Google cache. It took me less than a minute to get it. When you search through the PCIJ Blog for the words “Jonathan Tiongco”, the post is the top result. See the results here.

(By the way, the Manila-Standard Today reports on the PCIJ case, quoting its columnist and blogger Sassy Lawyer’s views.)

Divergent Poles bewails the dropping in the ratings of political blogs (like mine). I’m not so sure if it’s due to to people tuning out when it comes to politics; I myself think it’s simply due to the expanding Filipino blogosphere and that always, regardless of what’s going on, Showbiz and lifestyle will always trump the political.

Belmont Club continues his formidable coverage of the riots in France (no longer just Paris).

Another Hundred Years Hence tackles the supposed “facelift” of Metro Manila.

Mamutong points out he’s basically given up on mainstream media and points to a blog entry in A VC which argues the future of media lies in a fourfold process: microchunking, freeing it, syndicating it, and monetizing it:

Leaving aside the rights issues, which I know are large, if I were a television executive right now, I’d take my content, microchunk it, put a couple calls to a video ad server in the middle of it, and let it go whereever it wants to go, safe in the knowledge that whenever the show is viewed, I’ll get to run a couple 15 second spots in the middle of it (which I could change whenever I wanted to and which I could measure).

Katataspulong has an amusing disquisition on the term May Asim Pa, which segues into a scurrilous but amusing entry combining Ronnie Zamora’s suggestion for the theme for Joseph Estrada’s inaugural address, and Estrada recounting an old chestnut about Quezon and the first flyover. An amusing example of political gossip.

Mongster’s Nest has a sensible rant about politicians plastering their initials on everything from official stationery to street signs., while Surigaonon says there’s a significant change going on in Philippine society:

But what makes this situation the right path is that we are passing a period in our history where we as a people become fully convinced the real importance of selecting the right leader. We learn that we will pay the consequence if we don’t select the right leader. Secondly, we also become united in demanding for a government who will propel or economy upward. There is no period in history where the Filipinos are more united in demanding for a better economy.

Manuel L. Quezon III.

36 thoughts on “Wotcha burng 2nite?

  1. Rather than commiting the fallacy of Argumentum Ad Hominen
    or attacaking the messenger fallacy.
    I will try my best to stick to the article’s contents and logic as I understand it.
    Since there is a content on Alex Magno
    I copied and pasted an exerpt of the article about the Wage increase and used it as an argument to the french tragedy, I was to to get the F..k over it.(If that was not targetted to me then I apologize.)
    Much has been said and I will just pray that the riots stopand not crwate a vicious chain reaction which i think for me is the Sum of All fears.

    I respect MLQ3’s not agreeing on parliamentarianism, I have to apologize fro any indiication of advocacy in your forum.

    And lastly I appreciate our views being posted.I have to admit I have benn reckless in my typing and it shows typos and other form of grammatical errors.

    If ever I committed the fallacy of Argumentum Ad Hominen, I apologize for that too.

  2. Manolo,

    It’s always a discovery turning to your blog. I get to visit new blogs only because you mention them. How do you manage to scan and read all those blogs?

  3. Damn..Just as I was apologizing for the typographical errors…I did it again,please do not blacklist me.

    As I read the past comments, I see that I am a candidate for most errors.
    To those who might think I have nothing else to do, I would say they are correct because right now I am unmemployed.

    Sorry folks but I have another comment.
    That article written by Panjee is quite the whole picture of Filipino values, sad to say because of that value we forget others.
    We care for our loved ones and we do whatever to keep the business running because if the business falls so does our family.
    We blame government for our hell on earth situation.
    Some people want civil disobedience by not paying taxes.
    We blame the chain reaction of pork barrel and its trickle down effect to the last beneficiary. I could go on, but I must keep in mind that in less talk there would be less mistakes.
    Let us all stop blaming and start reflecting.

  4. mlq3,
    i also read your article in the inq yesterday and i do hope that those in the citizens congress or kangaroo court or whatever do agree with your view, and isn’t changing their stance out of lip service. but then again, with the words and actions of your kasama, i doubt it… i agree it will just become a ranting session full of rhetorics and flashy powerpoint presentations.

    with regards to panjee’s aricle,
    i guess it is different when someone like her has pretty much filled up the checklist in maslow’s theory. it would be sooo easy to talk about morality when someone is married to a very wealthy family, is chauffered around in a porsche cayenne with 2 armed bodyguards in big motorbikes riding along and living in a 3000 sq meter mansion in an exclusive village in quezon city. i’m not dissing her for being rich, mind you, wealth is a blessing, too… but isn’t she preaching up on her ivory tower?
    besides, if its morality that she wants, maybe she could influence her husband to put an emphasis on POSITIVE VALUES in their network, not just a load of crappy shows and tabloid tv journalism.

  5. Nothing about how the Peso is becoming the best performing currency in asia??

    I take note that this has not been voiced out, maybe it is against the political aims of the opposition and the news orgs, to actually follow this that something must be working..

    Maybe this is why they want her out now so as to grab the coffers as soon as possible?

    They dont want to see her succeed as then she can say who will lead next time, and that really is not what they want, she may put forward, another person who actually is working for the betterment of the country?

  6. I would alo be proud of our currency if the currency is not about supply and demand and other factors.

    Before China kept on lowering their currency, Japan had been doing that for decades.

    Both have a strong export base and thus they want their currencies to be weak.
    I recall one economist from the UAP told us to be happy of the weak peso for it could lead to more exports and others would say that their remmittances are better of with a weak peso.
    Unfortunately we do have overseas remittances to speak of but we don’t have an export base to speak of. We talk about electronics but before we could export them we got to do a multitude of importing as well.

  7. What the Philippines needs the most is a FREE TRADE AGREEMENT with America. Thailand and Singapore’s economy are zooming into the stratosphere because they’ve got such an arrangement. Why don’t we? Our sugar industry would kick the living crap out of corn, take the whole softdrink+candy+sweetfood biznes, and cut the cost of consumer goods to the American public containing sugar in half. It has always been to prevent THAT happy scenario that the sugar quota has been in place. But I bet Renato Constantino’s explanation is a lil different isn’t it?

  8. The reason we dont have a free trade agreement with them is that what we want to sell is not what they want to buy cheap.. They have to subsidize all their corn, sugar, meats.

    If the US and europe stopped paying their farmers the subsidies then the whole world would be better off.

    Anyway why sell to the US there are so many closer countries we could deal with on a level playing field or at least closer. Like China, Thailand.

    Make an agreement that all items from these countries get a 5% drop in tarrifs if they do the same to us..If you cant get no tarrif then 5% drop would surely help..

  9. Darn straight CVJ! And with FOUR MILLION natural born Filipino American citizens by 2008 and or immigrant Fil-Ams already in the Continent, I don’t see why such a MUTUALLY BENEFICIAL arrangement on behalf of the Archipelago should not be their POLITICAL PROGRAMME in America. Instead of quibbling over footnotes in history and weird June 12 parades…

  10. acidboy, i agree w/ you on that panjee thing.talk is cheap.it will be more interesting to see how she can influence her husband on how to put some morals in his capitalist endevour.

  11. free trade and the philippines. a former lawyer/professor during the marcos era was invited and attended the forum initiated by the u.s.embassy the topic, free trade and the philippines the presentation was done by the u.s. economic consular officer.. in which the content of his speech is that the philippines needs the u.s.a. to better its economy and by doing so there must be free trade between the pinoys and cano after much wrangling the program was opened to the business man/ lawyers for questions on the issue presented

    this former teacher of mine was given the opportunity to ask a question, however he asked that he be allowed to present a historical fact which is the basis for his question.

    the facts are as follows: 1776 the then continental states of america won its independence from great britain, such scenario then pointed out that the continental states of america is the developing country at that time and great britain and most of europe were the developed nations,
    the economy of then continental states was starting this made great britain and the other developed european nations rush to america offering them free trade which woul be beneficial to the wants of the citizens of continental america.

    americas economic “czar” that time the late george hamilton did not allow free trade it was his decision that a developing country in order to develop maintain, protect its economic development should/must not invloved itself with free trade with a developed country… this is the guiding principle that has made the continental states of america what is now the u.s.a.

    so, this former professor of mine asked the u.s. econmic consular officer as to why he is insisting that the philippines a developing country should/must have free trade with u.s.a. a developed country?

    this u.s. consular officer answered, well you know i have a terrible headache wasnt able to sleep much last night…
    and this guy walked down from the speakers podium and was gone…

    GMA and her claim that our country needs free trade?

    japan, korea and other developed nations simply followed what the u.s.a. did before they opened their economies to free trade.

    as for our country? well, come on guys some one has to stand up and say NO!

  12. I agree with Dean Bocobo’s caveat about the Communists in the people’s court. These people will use democratic space to further their goal of class warfare and xenophobia. Just as they participate in democratic struggle, but at the same time, refuse to lay down their arms. I cringed when I saw the mentally-challenged Teofisto Guingona, all ears and nothing in-between, make the clenched fist sign at the start of the Kangaroo Court proceedings. So much for any pretense of an impartial search for the truth.

    As for the Dean’s suggestion regarding free trade of sugar, why not? Besides sugar, with four million natural-born Filipino American citizens in the U.S., tourism could really be built into a huge industry here. In the meantime, all the country’s natural beauty is going to waste as we cater to the flesh trade favored by our current crop of tourists. If we put in the necessary infra, we have a huge built-in market with our Fil-Am bros.

  13. The CCTA is just another form of street protest. But that what democracy is all about. Your also free to make a fool of yourself!!!!
    Just woundering why don’t they hold it somewhere else.why should they use goverment property to attack the administration?

  14. Nice to be in the company of prominent bloggers.
    I researched a bit on DJB by googling the good man as I have found this website of the venerable Mr. Manolo.I need not read further and conclude that he is a prominent blogger.

    DJB.. Thank you for commenting on some of my comments as the same goes for Absolut… Thank you very much.
    It is quite obvious that I am new in this envronment and maybe one day I would have my own blog as of now I only blog at friendster journalizing personal notes.

    Its nice to know that I can activate my braincells reading your blogs and comments.

    Let us continue helping building this nation through this medium or forum although put to the test by the TRO.
    Many Thanks sir Manolo for being a gracious host to us.

  15. The term “people’s court” is all it took for me to lose interest in that endeavor. It immediately connotes communism or vigilante-ism – both too extreme for me and as close to subversive as you can get.

    Speaking of Fil-Am markets, there are very few Philippine food products actually made in the Philippines you can get in the US. I always buy Filipino for myself and for gift-giving – when I can find it that is. For food, I shop at a military commissary here in Colorado. For lack of an alternative I have to put up with bangus from Taiwan, canned gata from Thailand and pancit canton from Malaysia. They label it with Filipino names so its obvious they target the Filipino consumer. Sayang, our Philippine businesses are losing out to our more industrious neighbors – and this is just one market, Filipinos are everywhere.

    Also, re sugar…can’t you get more ethanol from sugar than from corn? I was in Nebraska in the spring and gas was cheaper than the national average by about 30 cents because the state produces ethanol from corn. Ethanol is also better for the environment than gasoline cause it burns cleaner. Never mind exporting, what about supplying our own needs?

  16. DJB: What’s a “Filipino American citizen”? Someone who holds dual citizenship? Or do you mean Filipino Americans (American citizens of Filipino ancestry)?

    In any case, a free trade agreement (or any other Philippine-related issue) will not be on the political agenda of Fil-Ams because most Fil-Ams probably have little idea of what being Filipino means, and hence, have little regard for the economic advancement of the Philippines. Most of them (I don’t have the stats but I can make a wager on this one), and especially second-generation ones, don’t even speak a Philippine language (I have tons of relatives like this). Many think everything Pinoy is inferior, if not totally rubbish. Basically, they’re Americans and have only/primarily American interests at heart. Ethnicity is not equivalent to citizenship or cultural identity.

    We can argue about how they turned out that way, but here is where a sense of nationalism and cultural roots ties in with economics: doing what’s best for you requires that you know who you are.

  17. My friends time and again we consider bilateral trade with with multilateral partners.
    It’s nice to dream but right now the US sources its sugar rerquirements from it Latin American neighbors and as of now Brazil is still looked at as the ethanol contender.

    Concernig cheap labor, before outsourcing and theChinese phenomenon the Chicanos were the main source of their cheap labor and goods many businesses relocated there and so on…

    Going back to the exporting idea….Why does it have to take 35 signature with Peza,with customs and all the BOC staff including the janitors and security guards before one can export something or heck even before we import something.
    I worked for the Port services industry before and for god sakes I was just doing data enttry of the IFM or import manifests and the brokers tried giving me a hundred for that job.
    A good thing happenned and I asked the system to be automated but not after receiving the culture shock of my life.I created a lot of enemies but in the port pakapalan ng mukha at patigasan ng sikmura so I lasted for another five or six years.

    So how could we export our way out of the pits if many exporters are getting sick of exporting.

    When will the time come when someone could start a business with in two days as in Australia and New zealand.

    We have many IT plans from the time of Ramos till present amd they are in the back burner because every admin tries to change a plan before it is even proposed.

    That is why the good father of our finance sec wants LTO,BOC,BIR,SEC to interoperate…. a simple and doable option but nada

    everything is doable if we just want to do it.

    how can we move if we are stuck in analysis paralysis like what is happenning to me now.

  18. CARLA: The US constitution grants natural born citizenship to any person born on its territory (principle of jus soli). The RP Constitution grants natural born citizenship to any person either of whose parents is already a Filipino citizen (principle of jus soli). Persons like me, who are born in America to Filipino parents are natural born DUAL CITIZENS of BOTH America and the Philippines. Every single person born in America to at least one Filipino parent IS such a natural born dual citizen. Filipino-Americans are growing in numbers every day and already outnumber their immigrant parents (who become naturalized dual citizens). Perhaps the future first Filipino American president of the US has already been born, or a future President of the Philippines, somewhere in New Jersey or Daly City or Baton Rouge. And Filipinos in America LOOK good–they are the pillars of their communities, they are hard working, god-fearing, successful Americans, full of the optimism and courage and pride in that land which lies not in geography or politics, but as Carlos Bulosan, the great Filipino American writer said: America is in the heart! And the Philippines is always in our heart. As a group, I speak for them, for I am one of the oldest of that generation of dual natural borns. What I feel is what they feel, that the Philippines can be a part of the future if it BELIEVES in something. We must ourselves win our people’s hearts and rally them to the causes of liberty and Democracy and the prosperity that grows under those twin suns. The Archipelago is the “old country” for these new Americans. They will return to help THIS homeland–how can they not–when they realize it is here that their souls long to come because it is here they can make a difference. As Americans, this is their future Britain. And either we shall win the battle for the hearts and minds, or the nihilists will.

  19. Oops pardon me, small correction lang: …The Philippines follows the principle of jus sanguinis in deciding natural born citizenship. Which reminds of FPJ and that funny lil man from the National Archives, who is also btw (*wink*) DESAPARECIDO, conyo!

  20. Due to the diaspora phenomenom.
    When time comes and everyone’s self inflicted slave driving turns in to technopreneurship then we can conquer the positions available .
    For now I agree the US has the most number of Filipinos from among our various destinations and they are somehow out of the self inflicted slave driving bug they can launch the lobby the group for a US freetrade agreement.

    And when the Arroyos,the Ledesmas, the Cojuancos and the rest convert their agricultural land and escape land reform legitimately we can jump start the ethanol monster hidden in us.
    And lets not forget the coconut nut the giant nut, the tree of life ….once our entrpreneurial mind unleashes the monster and resident evil in him, he could also conquer the cocodiesel and virgin oil business with the US.
    First the US then the rest of the world….

    The Filipinos are coming!

  21. Karl, just as I advocate certain things, you’re fully entitled to make counter-proposals: this is what’s great about blogging, the interaction between readers.

    dawin: technorati is your friend, since they fixed the problem with bogged-down searches, it’s a good way to find out what the blogosphere’s obsessing about at any given time. That, and I have a huge reading list of blogs.

    sleeping with who: a colleague informs me one reason the story you’re mentioning hasn’t been picked up is that it was originally a Reuters story, and Reuters is pretty harsh about suing anyone who uses their stories without subscribing first (and Reuters is very expensive).

    mita: good point on our losing out on processed foods for exports, the Thais have gone into it in a big way, and Mindanao, for one, should be getting on that bandwagon.

    DJB, you forget the USA has always feared the Philippine agricultural market.

  22. Why do we all focus on the US… It is such a hard market to crack there are easier ones and closer. Transport costs lower..

    We are in Asia, Why not sell to Asians. And selling to people who have left here to the US is not really a market its an excuse on bad marketing..

    Name 5 items that are filipino which would be good else where.

    Adobo ..
    Durian.. (Processed of course)
    Jack Fruit.

    Most of it is food. That i can think off.

    The only other thing is people and skills. And we are allready trying that with the call centers.

    We need to get products, look at all the other industrialized countries they export processed items. Not the raw materials.. Japan has no raw materials…

  23. Thanks again Sir Manolo, your message was more than a relief.
    To sleeping with the who…
    Yes sir or Ma’am it would be nice to have bilateral arrangements with nearer countries but we have to have a strong and consistent foreign policy.
    We have the Asian plus three bandwagon, the AFTa and other alphabet soups and one reader was right that our neighbors label their products as Filipino, let’s not Forget the Manila mangoes from Mexico which they exported to the US.

    The exact problem why we have to go far is our neighbors also have bilateral arrangements with the US and now with China and they mave no room to accomodate us.
    How again I wish that China and India would over expand that every counttry would look at the Philippines instead.

  24. We need to focus on the US since it’s too big a market to be ignored. As for it’s fear of the Philippine agricultural market, that’s one area where the Fil-Am lobby can be of some help. We can also lend our voices along with other countries in the WTO to get the US to drop it’s domestic agricultural subsidies and supports. (As for the products we can possibly export, i would like to add rubbing alcohol particularly for Singapore…can’t find anywhere here.) As far as India and China is concerned, it’s not a zero-sum game – opportunities for trading with them are there as well.

  25. Pardon me sleeping with the who for pasting part of you comment
    Name 5 items that are filipino which would be good else where.

    Adobo ..
    Durian.. (Processed of course)
    Jack Fruit.
    I am reminded of something…

    Why does it take to buy cheaper imported stuff rather than products from mindanao?

    I don’t know what cost cutting measure we can do like nautical highway improved infra in between those nautical hioghways or what ever magic.

    Right it’s those damn subsidies agin. Can’t the US see that they are preventing development of other countries due to their subsidies, but what do they care for long as they can they will.
    For us puny folks must be be the reverse we will so we can.
    But big is not always better and might is no longer right.

    Look at microsoft still figuring out what to do with apple and other smaller rivals like Red Hat.

    On another micro…

    they say micro business is the way or the wave.
    We are mistaking micro for the Sachet mentality or tinge.

    Retail vs. wholesale the sari sari store vs the megamall.

    We can still beat the big guys but not in that way please.

    Now my cconut and ethanol dream.
    It is again a deadlock between the peasant and the land owners and the Agrraian reform department.
    Should we forget about land reform for thee too industries could be better handled by the Insulares and the peninsulares.
    Should the indio remain an indio.

    Again many things that we want out but can not for a lesser evil like they say get rid of the jeepney for a they are an eye sore but what will they replace them with with no infra in place.

    Last na po! I hope the do solve that Northrail and NAIA once and for all!

  26. Rubbing alcohol in a predominantly Muslim country? uh-uh…no way…the imams won’t like it. Muslims can’t even use alcohol for medical purposes. This was true in Indonesia anyway.

  27. cvj,
    are you in singapore? i’d just like to ask if it is true that the government plans to ban smoking altogether there in 10 years? wow! talk about strong republic!

  28. Well Karl..

    Small can be good in the right context..

    One thing is first small profits large distribution.. = large profits..

    Small and small dont work unless its for the love of it like the Red Hats..Fedora.. vs M$

    If you take Linux for an example it is more a love than a need or want, for most of the creators and developers, then this has become a love of some of the users.

    Then look here in this country, we all complain about M$ but how many of us are using Linux to cut costs and reduce overheads, increase productivity. (I am right now..)

    Same with Photoshop – GIMP … Office – Open Office 2.0 ..

    All the other applications out there but we sit back and either pay the high price or steal via Piracy..

    And where does any of the money for the software go in this country, i can tell you honestly not back here..

    I am going off track here but we need to support local produce and products and Open Source applications. to reduce our reliance on the US..

    I only buy Philipino when i can.. Yes it could cost more but it probably fresher..

  29. Most of the time, the Philippines has allowed itself to end up with the short end of the bargain. Filipinos, by themselves or as corporate bodies, succeed in ventures abroad. As a national whole, we fail in pushing a common overriding enterprise or interest or cause. This almost congenital disunity (inability to stick together and be impervious to provocations and bribes) keep us from getting really good deals in international negotiations (be it trade or defense or whatnot). Further indication perhaps that this is an artificial nation, a country imagined by colonial powers but not by its natives.

  30. I was told that at the height of SARS you could find rubbing alcohol over here. MitaMS makes an interesting point, although it’s not predominantly Muslim, maybe it’s a concession to maintain racial harmony, though it may turn out to be just a matter of local consumer habits. As for smoking laws, haven’t heard yet about a total ban but the government has gradually been phasing in restrictions similar to the ones we have in Manila. This place is a ‘strong republic’ indeed and they are proud of it. In the PM’s National Day speech, he explained to a Western reporter (i think as a favorable comparison to the emergence of China and India) that over here “I can ban chewing gum and make it stick.”

  31. cvj,
    i myself was surprised when i heard it. a singaporean came up to me while i was smoking in some kopitiam there and started discussing about the 10 year plan for a total smoking ban… then he started smoking non-stop like its already 10 years!

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