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Love’s Labor Found August 4, 2019 Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time Luke 12: 13-21 Someone in the crowd said to Je...

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Ano pa ang silbi ng Philippine Embassy sa Kuwait?

Ano pa ang silbi ng Philippine Embassy sa Kuwait?

Ano pa ang silbi ng Philippine Embassy sa Kuwait?

Sino ba ang dapat protektahan ng Philippine Embassy sa Kuwait? Ang mga OFW o ang mga kabaro nila? Makikita sa video na ito kung paano lantarang binalewala ng embahada sa Kuwait ang isang karapatan ng OFW bilang isang Pilipino nang tanggihan ni Vice Consul Sheila Monedero na notaryohan ang affidavit ni ABS-CBN Middle East Kuwait Correspondent Maxxy Santiago dahil daw sa conflict of interest.
Kaninong interes? Interes ba ng kanilang amo na si Ambassador Shulan Primavera na kasalukuyang nahaharap sa imbestigasyon sa Department of Foreign Affairs sa Maynila sa reklamong sexual harassment na isinampa ng kanyang dating kasamabahay?Pinapanotaryo ni Maxxy ang kanyang affidavit na gagamitin sa DFA investigation para pasinungalingan ang affidavit ng janitor ng Embassy na si Leonora Imperial na halatang tahasang ginamit ng embahada para lamang magsinungaling sa kanyang affidavit na pilit na idinadawit si Maxxy at dalawa pa para sirain daw ang reputasyon ni Ambassador Primavera at palabasing gawa-gawa lang ng kasambahay niya ang kuwento na minolestiya siya.

Ganun na ba kadesperado ang embahada na maging kanilang sariling janitor gagamitin nila para sa kanilang kasinungalingan? Hindi ba sila naawa sa janitor? Naghintay ng 2 oras si Maxxy tapos hindi naman pala nonotaryohan ni Vice Consul Monedero ang affidavit niya dahil sa conflict of interest daw. Pinirmahan ng embahada ang affidavit ni Imperial pero ayaw nilang pirmahan ang affidavit ni Maxxy.
Ngayon mas malinaw pa sa sikat ng araw kung sino ang gustong protektahan ni Monedero. Ni ayaw ni Monedero humarap kay Maxxy at pinaako na lamang sa kanyang staff na si Jay ang pagpapaliwanag sa counter. Kawawa ang mga mabubuting staff ng embahada, pati sila nadadamay sa mga maling gawain ng nakakataas sa kanila. Kung si Maxxy na tagapagtanggol ng mga OFW ay ginanito, paano na lang ang mga ordinaryong OFW tulad namin? Tama na! Sobra na! Pauwiin na si Vice Consul Sheila Monedero at iba pang mga tiwaling opisyal ng embahada sa Kuwait! Nananawagan kami sa Department of Foreign Affairs at kay PNoy! Pakikalat ito para makarating sa ating gobyerno!!!
PILIPINO SA KUWAIT — at Kuwait Philippine Embassy - Faiha.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Why Carlos Celdran should go to jail for his 2010 Damaso stunt

January 29, 2013
First I presented the facts surrounding the Carlos Celdran ‘Damaso’ circus in my previous article. Evidently, facts alone don’t resonate loudly enough in Filipinos’ ears nor get processed effectively within their limited intellectual faculties. So I shall state my opinion about said facts a bit more explicitly here.
Consistency is the mother of credibility.
Consistency is the mother of credibility.
Carlos Celdran is entitled to express an opinion under that doctrine of “freedom of speech” his supporters keep invoking. But his right to do so isforum-dependent as commentor “jcc” pointed out
The case of Celdran must not be framed under the free-speech clause because in order to exercise it, you must have your own forum to vent your speech. You can use the public plaza for that. If you want to use a school auditorium, you must ask permission from the school first. If you want to use the pulpit or the church premises, you must ask the permission of the church first. Inside church premises, your speech that is anti-church cannot be tolerated. You were demanding an untramelled speech inside the premises that does not welcome it.
Put it in another scenario, Congress. Protesters there are allowed their free speech outside the premises. You cannot get inside the session hall and deliver your speech unless you are a member of congress itself.
The provision of the constitution is clear. “No law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech.” It is an invocation directed against State actors. The Church is not an agency of the State. It is an independent group operating outside the framework of what the constitution considers state actor.
In short, your freedom to swing your fist ends where my nose begins. Though in that amusing metaphor and in this case of the Church versus Celdran, limits to said freedom are implied, there is no threat to “freedom of speech” that is proportionate to the loud whining we currently hear from the chattering classes today. True to the emo spirit, some of Celdran’s defenders point out how the “Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines too reserve the right to freedom of speech. They are after all, Filipinos themselves and have the right to speak.” But of course. The difference between our modern-day Damasos and Celdran is that our 21st Century Damasos exercise that right within their own premises (their Churches, their vassal private schools, and their colonial properties), and via their own channels (their own blogs, websites, radio stations, and television programs).
Celdran stepped into the Manila Cathedral and flashed a “Damaso” placard. Nice statement — one I happen to agree with. In fact I recall finding myself nodding my head a bit in bemusement back in 2010 when it broke the news. Indeed, as one Tweetizen asserted, Celdran’s Damaso stunt did a lot to raise the profile of the pro-RH Bill activist voice. I agree with that too.
But that does not change the simple fact that a law was violated in a clearly pre-meditated act. Some of us choose to express our views within the domain of what the Law allows. Celdran chose to do the same outside of it. He once accused moi of troll-like behaviour. Fair enough perhaps. I express myself in ways that annoy people and am as proud of that as any shock-jock is. Celdran did the same when he dressed as Jose Rizal and flashed “Damaso” in the Manila Cathedral in 2010 — proof that troll-like behaviour is not necessarily confined to online activity. The difference between witty trolls like moi and plain emo real-life trolls like Celdran is that witty guys like me do my trolling without violating other peoples’ property rights and impinging on people’s entitlement to practice their religion without unwarranted interruption. My audience comes to me. Celdran’s audience gets their door kicked down.
Whatever service that happened to be transpiring in the Manila Cathedral at the time (whether it was a Holy Mass or some sort of “ecumenical service”ek ek) is not relevant.
The only thing relevant is where the stunt was exhibited.
Celdran is a martyr indeed. He will go to jail to serve the cause for legal artificial contraception in the Philippines. He should do his time with his chin up, because he chose to risk being sentenced to that punishment by knowingly violating the law and then apologising for doing so. When you apologise for an offense, said apology implies a willingness to suffer the consequences associated with said offense. Celdran has two choices: (1) march into prison with dignity or (2) be dragged into the slammer costumed and kicking and screaming like all the other social media attention-junkies out there.
I suggest he goes for Option 1. That way he does a bit of justice to the smug look he flashes while posing in those handcuffs in the numerous publicity photos he’s been tweeting out since 2010.
Freedom of speech is not dead, nor will it die in the aftermath of Celdran’s imprisonment. It will thrive for as long as idiotic stunts are played by emoactivists for witty people like moi to write about intelligently. The armchair on which I sit is quite comfy indeed. That’s what being at the top of the ideas food chain is all about.

Why It’s Happier Abroad

Frankly, who would like to work and live overseas if they didn’t have to?
Who would like to uproot themselves to feed family if they didn’t have to?
Who would like to be separated from friends and family if they didn’t have to?
Who wouldn’t like to see a free and prosperous Philippines where Filipinos can take liberty with their choices in the pursuit of happiness without government getting in the way?
Yes – it is personal. The Philippine government regulations keep jobs away, take my money away, keep my income low, prompting me to make a choice to uproot myself. Yes, I have a choice to stay – but at the price of my personal integrity – and that’s a price I am not willing to pay.
If I am to keep my children from being educated in decrepit public schools that churn out morons, idiots, and functional illiterates whose only job is to keep voting for thieves – I have to find that income stream from somewhere else – and that’s why I have to go where the money is.
Any Filipino will find out sooner or later, the money is not in the Philippines unless one was born an oligarch. As one born into privilege, it may appear that the scion no longer need be corrupt. Nothing can be further from the truth – the corruption has been embedded into the family. All the privileges of the oligarch are fed by tax money, skewed regulations, and connections – by institutionalized thievery aka systemic corruption. There is no need to steal – the system is already set up to feed the oligarchy. The scion need not be corrupt – all he has to do is to step in into the corrupt role that has been created even before he was born.
To earn the sort of money that allows me to keep the lifestyle I want, and yet still sleep soundly every night – that I earned it without stealing, without bribing, without conspiring against my fellow taxpayers – is a blessing. It’s not the sort of money one earns in the Philippines.
The other thing is about liberty, freedom – to exercise my liberty, to become an individual – and not just a fixture who is expected to work their ass out so that government has its “lifeblood” – or so that the extended Pinoy family can enable and expand mendicancy.
As an individual, I don’t have to fit in and go with what’s “sikat” or what’s “uso” (in vogue) among the Pinoys. I don’t have to behave like a typical Flip under pain of social ostracization. As an individual I don’t have to be “Filipino” or “proud pinoy” – I am just plain ole me.
It would have been more fun in the Philippines if our environs did not have the collective outcomes associated with the aggregated actions of a society bespeckled with impunity and myopia.
No sir – am not a nameless, faceless, dispensable statistic whose job is to remit $$$ so that Aquino’s oligarch pals can leech the money to their stores, tollways, electric utilities, phone companies – that’s not fun.
Having said that am sharing this piece from the forum – Happier Abroad. I caught it after an AP reader by the name of Win, shared the link in the comment threads. I read the link and it’s an honest-to-goodness feedback from a non-Filipino. I couldn’t have said it any better. It’s good that there are more non-Filipinos who are helping with their voices to get the message across. because upright, rational, logical Pinoys need all the help they can get to turn the insanity around.
You guys will LOVE this one! It’s a brutally honest masterpiece of truth about the Philippines posted in my forum by one of my advisors.
This is the beauty of freedom of expression. This is the beauty of a free Internet (not the SOPA or PIPA version being advocated by Hollywood). To hear the contrarian voices who say that all is not well in the Hacienda Republic.
With the recent news that Joma Sison is coming back and being offered a cabinet position for the sake of reconciliation – I say get your passports handy. It’s gonna get worse as the Yellow tards turn into Nokor clones wanting a rerun of Red Star over China – in the Philippines.
So, before the Philippines is overrun by political correctness and happy-clappy, nicey-feelie, feel good, don’t say anything-if you can’t say anything-nice retards – here’s a toast to Philippine reality, by a forum member who calls himself Mr S.
The Philippines is a two tier priced place. On one side you have Filipino prices and the other you have dumb foreigner inflated prices. Basically any touristy place in a major city will be over-priced. Because foreigners will pay these prices and the upper-middle to rich classes of Filipino society will also pay, for the sake of showing off that they can afford to eat or hang out in these kinds of establishments. If you look at the Philippines as a whole, there aren’t many places like this. But, these are where tourists usually wind up or they are in the better parts of town, so you are getting charged more for the “supposed” nicer ambiance and better facilities.
I agree that halfway decent hotels are overpriced here, but when every decent place gets away with it, there is no incentive to lower prices.
Lack of quality is a big issue in the Philippines, this is mainly due to Filipinos generally not being complainers so nothing improves much over time. I think the way things improve here is when something just breaks and the only option to fix or replace it with is a newer model item that didn’t exist previously. There is no concept of preemptive maintenance, things just get fixed when they break.

Food prices vary depending on quality and if they are local or imported. Anything imported from Asia is generally more a little more expensive, like from China or local SE Asian countries. Anything imported from Europe or N or S America is greatly inflated, but the food is much higher quality usually than what you can find locally in the Philippines so people with money here are willing to pay the inflated prices.
Filipinos have no concept of price competition, they just raise prices, almost never lower them to attract business. For example, if business is slow in a bar the logical thing a foreigner might do is lower his prices to attract business or create special discount days to draw in customers. Here in PI, they think,” well, business is slow and I’m losing money. So I’ll just raise prices a bit and that will make up for less customers”… I have to agree though that prices have been going up considerably in the last few years. When I first came here 8 years ago it was A LOT cheaper than it is now. Even though the Government says that inflation isn’t that high here and thus they can lower interest rates so banks will lend more money, I think they are just spinning a story to get people into debt and spend money just like what happened in Europe and America. So there will be a bubble burst probably second half of this decade in Philippines, will be a good time to buy real estate then…
You can stay here cheaply as a tourist, if you are willing to settle for less and know a bit of the tricks to being here. Mostly you have to have a bit of experience being here first before one learns how to navigate things here, or be guided by someone who already lives here. You can easily have a great life here on 50,000 Pesos or more a month if your single and don’t go crazy spending money on nightlife all the time or Western foods and dining. If you want to settle down with a GF and have a family, you probably need to bump it up a bit. With a wife/GF and one kid, your living expenses will probably go up at least 20,000 Pesos a month is you live in the Metro Manila area. This is if you to choose to live a middle class life style or above.
Beauty is subjective to the person. Filipinos are not as ugly as you project them to be, but yes, there is only a small minority which would really stand out for their looks or physical appearance. Most of these women never make it into the dating scene. By their 20′s they are usually scooped up by local guys while they are in high school or early college. The ones that do get onto the dating market usually have something going against them, whether it’s family, single mother, mentally/emotionally unstable, gold digger/player, a P4P girl, etc. Also, one has to be aware that most families will try to send their kids overseas to study or work so a lot of the better looking girls are being sent off to Uni overseas. The better looking are usually girls from a family that could provide decent nutrition for them as they grew up. The good looking girls with decent social standing are readily snatched up by local guys and the good looking whore girls that many foreign guys run into are also being taken out of the bar market, so there are only left overs usually of average or below average girls. Almost all Filipinos with half a brain want to get the hell out of the Philippines for the most part cause they don’t feel they can have a successful life here. So there has been a mass exodus of quality ladies over the last decade or more. So as more leave and more guys are trying to find foreign wives, there are going to be less decent 20 something women to hook up with.
Filipinos have all kinds of looks and you can find ones that don’t have the monkey face, scarred legs/face, pig nose or Alfred E Neuman ears, but like I said you gotta take your time and wade though the masses and be patient. I’ve seen a lot of knock-outs and I could go to any large mall in Metro Manila and find them. But if you look at the millions of people in say Metro Manila, maybe when you go to the mall there are only a few dozen that one might find attractive enough for their tastes. However, most guys over 45 don’t care as much about facial looks, they just want a young girl with a half way decent body that doesn’t look like the fat older Western girls they are used to having to look at from where they come from (even though most of them are considered fat as well). I personally like a nice body and will overlook facial imperfections to be able to hit it. So maybe a girl has a 8,9,10 body for my tastes, but she only has a 7,6, or 5 for facial looks. Average face and killer body is okay with me, but I think most guys want a killer face and will work with an average body. However if I wanted to get serious with a girl then a nice face is a must, the body can be improved with proper diet and exercise. But with one-night stands or casual humping, I prefer nice body than face. As long as I don’t have to put a bag over it.
If you think Filipinos are ugly, don’t go to Indonesia! They are way worse looking than Filipinas. I was just there a few months ago and basically you can go days without seeing a good looking girl. But I prefer curvier woman, so girls in Indonesia don’t have those characteristics. If you like short girls who are either super thin with no tits or ass, or slightly plump girls who think stuffing their face gives them curves, but they still have no decent tits or ass, then go to Jakarta Indonesia.
You can go to the local nightlife hangouts and spend minimally, but do you want to hang out in a drab place with dirty plastic furniture with roaches crawling around and the bathrooms look like they haven’t been cleaned since the building was built? yeah you can still get 20-40 Peso beer prices if you are willing to lower your standards to the local Filipinos male one, but most foreigners can’t and the locals know this so they will usually charge higher alcohol and food prices cause they know they can get away with it.
What Winston said about current prices is basically correct except Taxis now are 40 Pesos start of meter and go up 3.5P so often depending on KM and time. So Taxis are a bit more expensive now than they were in the first half of 2011. I would say they went up by a third. I never tip girls from bars in the provincial cities, only give them taxi money like 50-100 pesos. In Manila they expect a tip because there is a larger influx of business tourists that go to the foreigner bars and they often just put their expenditures on their business account. This is why Burgos and EDSA Complex have expensive bar fines and lady drinks. The girls expect a tip also cause they have been spoiled by these guys throwing money at them. So I wouldn’t bar fine a girl from those places unless you don’t need to watch your expenses and are willing to spend well over 5000 pesos just for the barfine and tip. Pick up girls at the bars in Malate are cheaper but the quality and attitude varies so if you are a tourist with a limited time frame then you may or may not have the best experience there. It’s luck of the draw.
I used to be a regular whore monger at the bars but I don’t really go to them anymore due to my own life schedule, higher prices and lower quality of girls nowadays. I’m not kidding when I say that the good looking girls are being pilfered away through different mechanisms at an increasing rate of speed than just a few years ago. If I didn’t have personal commitments here I would much prefer to go to Thailand or Vietnam and date the girls there. Cambodia, I didn’t really see too many good looking girls there so it wouldn’t be on my list unless things have changed in the past 5 years from last I was there. The only thing PI has going for it nowadays is English being spoken and used here, but even that is slipping away every year because of the atrocious education system here and Tagalog TV being preferred than English channels. I interview Filipinos regularly and test their English skills and every year their overall abilities have been going down on average. In another 10-20 years the average publicly educated Filipino will be on the same level English wise with all the other Asian countries, basically minimal or none. I’m already seeing it when I travel to provincial cities. I’m also seeing it in metro Manila when I’m not in the larger commercial areas.
The Philippines is self-destructing upon itself, it’s just that the population living here that hasn’t already immigrated from the country can’t really see what’s coming around the corner for them, with the increasing population and everything that comes with that problem…The average Filipino really has no clue how shitty their county is getting every year unless they have worked or traveled overseas. And basically every overseas worker I’ve talked to is trying to get back overseas as fast as they can. It’s pretty sad actually. Having just a Filipino passport is a really shitty prospect. I’ll live temporarily here or visit but I’m glad I wasn’t born here and forced to be a Filipino… That would suck!
Mr S – wherever you are, touche!
Lastly, I overheard on TV (while in the oriental store) that during the recent visit of the Thai Prime Prime Minister, Kris Aquino said, the Thai PM and Noynoy make a nice couple. Maybe if Aquino were a shitzu or a pug with a leash on his neck – he and the Thai PM would look nice.

Posted by  on Jan 22, 2012 in CultureLifestyleSociety | 145 comments

Carlos Celdran is a bad influence to the Filipino people

July 12, 2012
Does Carlos Celdran have class and intelligence? Apparently the answer to that is a resounding NO.
Recent events have exposed the true character of this man. As much as he thinks he is doing the Philippines a great service, his actions and way of thinking only proves how unintelligent and low-class he is. It is very unfortunate that he has become a public figure that blinkered Filipinos follow, which has further contributed to the collective idiocy of the Filipino people.
Last month, he started an online petition against building a high rise condominium near the Rizal monument. Apparently, it was said that the buildings will destroy the view of the park. Furthermore, he likened the situation to France’s city of Paris where the Eiffel Tower is located — never mind the fact that Paris is Paris and Manila is still the stinky and dangerous city that it is. Ineed, Manila has been and continues to be the laughingstock of emerging Asian economies. It is a place where prostitutes chase white men and where you can’t use your smart phone for fear of being mugged.
[Photo courtesy Foter.com.]

I do not know what is there to preserve. I would definitely understand why the government of France would not dare build high rises anywhere near the Eiffel tower in a way that might ruin its view. They can afford to make such decisions and act on them because despite the economic mess Europe is currently experiencing at the moment, France is still a First World country. Plus, that’s the Eiffel Tower we’re talking about — one of the most popular tourists destinations in the world.
The Philippines, in contrast, is still Asia’s third world slum. Last time I checked, no one in their right mind really wants to undergo the Manila experience. The city has still to earn its place among the world’s great cities. For now, Filipinos should focus on job creation instead of worrying about monuments which are irrelevant to the turmoils the Philippines is experiencing.
Celdran had also posted a map depicting China as part of Philippine territory. This is would have been laughable if it weren’t for the fact that it highlighted even more the Republic of the Philippines’ weak military and outdated ships. Of course, Carlos did not just post the picture, he told China to kiss the Philippines’ “98 million asses”. Of course it’s not as if the People’s Republic of China would give Celdran the time of day given his lack of class and uneducated beliefs but, as I have stated earlier, he has many followers over whom this kind of thinking is so easily widely propagated. Oh I forgot – Filipinos already think like this.
Does Celdran know what he should be prioritizing? It seems that he is a very vain person, concerned only about the aesthetics of Manila. I can totally understand however why he is doing this. Celdran is a Manila tour guide. A rather challenging job to be doing in Manila, if you ask me. I can imagine foreigners going to Manila to try it out and likely coming out of the experience disappointed…
Look: people will say the Filipino people are nice, and indeed they are polite – we Brits might say “smarmy” – obsequious or ingratiating are maybe less pleasant words. But they do try. That does take the edge off the sheer misery of a crumbling, filthy, depressing city and an economy that exists only on the remittances of the smart ones who have left.
Sorry folks. I know there are many people who love the Philippines, but its economic development has been a disaster; the irony is that Manila is the headquarters of the Asian Development Bank (the reason I come here) and it has the WORST growth history of any of the ASEAN countries – Cambodia which was torn apart by civil war up until 1997 has a first-class airport (fresh ham and cheese sandwiches on foccacia, freshly brewed cappuccino , clean lounges) and some great restaurant food and hotels (see my next post). But the Manila, where the intelligentsia sneer at their Asian brothers and sisters for their lack of English, is beaten hands down even by little Phnom Penh and left standing by every other mega-city in the region.
Carlos Celdran is not likely to shy away from insisting that the Philippine economy is outperforming the US economy. Well Celdran, last time I checked most Filipinos, given the chance, would still move to the United States or even the land of your mortal enemy China, because your beloved Philippines cannot provide decent lives for them. Also, I have not heard an American saying I will move to the Philippines for greener pastures. Many, instead, go there looking for prostitutes, a trade which is abundant in the city where you work as a tour guide. Also, your ideas are not only appalling and completely delusional, they border on ethnocentrism — a style of tribal Medieval thinking. You act as if the Philippines has nothing to learn from other cultures such as the Chinese. May I remind you that this attitude is what resulted in the fall of many Islamic nations. They never bothered to listen to European debates on democracy and ingrained within their societies the thought that they do not need to learn from these discussions. Consequently, the Enlightenment and the Scientific Revolution all but passed them by. They are now dealing with the outcome of their insularity that infected their societies a couple odd centuries ago and this is what is bound to happen to the Philippines if we continue to fail at being a bit more practical in the way we think.
No man is an island and the same notion applies to nations. They continuously learn from each other. The United States of America began as a land colonized by Great Britain. India was under the Mongols, Turks, and eventually Great Britain. Great Britain (before it became great) was brutally conquered and ruled by the Norman kings of France. While it may be true that three nations have occupied the Philippines, Filipinos did not learn much from the experience and have continued to practice their culture of mediocrity. China had some time ago started to open its doors to Western ideas. Why would the Philippines think of itself as something so special that they would refuse to be influenced by other ideals and cultures? Carlos Celdran would probably answer that question in his usual the-Philippines-is-the-greatest-nation-ever manner.
I do recognize the futility of this article because Carlos Celdran is old and like they say, there is no use teaching an old dog new tricks. On the other hand there are some Filipinos who can tell right from wrong. Clearly, Carlos is not one of them.

Carlos Celdran faces prison for allegedly offending Catholic faithful in his ‘Damaso’ stunt in 2010

January 28, 2013
Popular tour guide and activist Carlos Celdran was found guilty of acts deemed “offensive to the feelings of the faithful.” Celdran was arrested for a publicity stunt he performed back on the 30th September 2010 to raise awareness for his advocacy. Dressed in costume that presumably depicted him as Philippine national hero Jose Rizal, Celdran allegedly entered the Manila Cathedral Church and interrupted an on-going Roman Catholic mass by holding up a placard with the name “Damaso” written on it.
Carlos Celdran in his 'Damaso' costume
Carlos Celdran in his ‘Damaso’ costume
Padre Dámaso is one of the notorious characters in the novel Noli Me Tangere. The novel was written by José Rizal, one of the leaders of the Propaganda Movement in the Philippines. Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not or “Social Cancer”) is a controversial and anticlerical novel that exposed the abuses of the Spanish friars (belonging to the Roman Catholic Church) and the Spanish elite in colonial Philippines during the 19th century.
Celdran was then charged for offenses relating to Article 133 of the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines:
Art. 133. Offending the religious feelings. — The penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision correccional in its minimum period shall be imposed upon anyone who, in a place devoted to religious worship or during the celebration of any religious ceremony shall perform acts notoriously offensive to the feelings of the faithful.
While the law is quite clear with regard to the place where the offense was committed, the basis for measuring the extent or nature of how offensive an act is to the “feelings of the faithful” is left open to interpretation.
Nonetheless, Celdran later formally apologised in an open letter to Cardinal Gaudencio Rosales for his actions. In the letter, Celdran sought forgiveness and called for all to learn to set aside “differences and work towards a better future together.”
[...] I would like to seek peaceful resolution with the Church. I am comforted by the grace of forgiveness and reconciliation that Christ’s Resurrection brought to us. We are constantly given the chance to return to the Father’s house, to reclaim the state of grace that is always there for us to receive as his children.
However, Celdran later denied that his stunt interrupted a Holy Mass in progress posting on his Facebook account a photo of the Manila Cathedral supposedly taken at the time of the incident and pointing out that there are “posters onstage, no priest by the altar and several layman speakers sitting around.” He added, “This was NOT a mass at all, no?”
A movement to call for the overturning of the court decision is growing from the ranks of human rights activists and advocates of free expression. The principle being made the cornerstone of this movement is “freedom of speech.” One of the first statements released in Celdran’s defense was issued by Human Rights Watch (HRW)
Human Rights Watch said the decision “is a setback for free speech in the Philippines, which prides itself in being a democracy.”
In a statement signed by Carlos Conde, Asia Researcher of Human Rights Watch, the group said: “This verdict should be reversed. Nobody should be jailed for voicing out an opinion or position, especially on a subject that concerns the lives of millions of Filipino women and mothers.”
Filipinos have long been known to pay lip service to the notion of Rule of Law while at the same time consistently failing to uphold this principle in practice
There is very little evidence that Filipinos are capable of living by the “rule of law”. The society is quite extraordinary in the sense that simple rules and regulations whether on the road or in the work place are for the most part ignored. This is because each individual has this baseless sense of being more important than everybody else. It is why you see people cutting you off on highway lanes on the road or pushing their way in lines ahead of the rest in a queue. In other words, Filipinos in general tend to put their own interest first before other people.
Indeed, spectacles often take precedence over intelligent discussion in the Philippines; “[Filipinos] lack the discipline to engage in discussions in a civilized way and lack the discipline to not turn a public forum into a circus.”
[NB: Parts of this article were lifted off the Wikipedia.org article "Father Damaso" and used in accordance with that site's Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License consistent with the same license applied byGet Real Post to its content.]

“Nganga!” goes the Filipino taxpayer

January 29, 2013
Filipino taxpayers can take pride in sponsoring two expensive teledramas.
In 2012, we saw the Club 188 signatories expedite the impeachement of then Chief Justice Corona, courtesy of a Powerpoint presentation. The drama was blown to a full scale at the senate, where we saw a nation polarized by the eloquent grandstanding of our public servants.
Our dear politicians spared no time in entertaining their public again this 2013 and gave us the most opportune controversy of an open secret and a popular government practice of partaking public savings. The gutter rebuttal of a senate president to valid arguments presented by a budget-aggrieved senator, who demanded transparency and accountability, floored many, who do not know much of the senate president’s dark history.
What has the Filipino taxpayer got in return after funding the casts, venues and production of these teledramas?
I say, NONE. To put it bluntly and to use a local popular term, our taxpayers have nothing but : “Nganga!”
The Impeachment trial as the most expensive local production for the entertainment and expense of Filipino taxpayers should have given the people a good ROI (Return of Investment) IF Corona’s dare of exposing their SALNs prospered with the Club 188 signatories and the Honorable Senator Drilon.
IF our politicians are really serious about trekking the DAANG MATUWID, it should have been an onset of a practice, the dawning of sincere transparency and accountability!
The election is fast approaching and our dear senators and congressmen will soon be busy campaigning for re-election or endorsing their partymates, THEY ALSO HAVE LESS THAN A WEEK to pass the #FOI bill or the overdue Freedom of Information Bill.
Do we see them expediting its passage like how they did with the impeachment of Corona?
Is Corona’s impeachment more important than the transparency and accountability that the taxpayers had been demanding since PNoy promised a nation towards “Daang matuwid’?
Or is that “Daang Matuwid”, just a horizon too far to make a detour at, thanks to a Kapamilya, Kapartido, Kaibigan at Kabarilan policy?

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

It stinks: How they waste our money!

I love it when politicians throw mud at each other. That’s how we get to know about how they otherwise conspire to waste our money. When they are chummy with each other, I tend to worry that we are being screwed without us knowing it.
Sometimes, they can surprise us with gems of truth like pearls in a pig pen.  Here’s one from Atty. Gigi Reyes, the embattled and irrevocably resigned (or so she says) Chief of Staff of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile:
“I believe what the public really hungers for is the truth about the officials they elected and how their money is spent or wasted. The people now believe that the Senate stinks…It is sad but I so agree.”
Yes, Ms. Gigi. You got it right. You speak with authority. You got into the fray and did the taxpayers a favor. Thanks to your impertinent words about one senator, we got the reaction to confirm our worst fears about how our Senators treat our money with disrespect. I don’t know why we elect people so undeserving of our trust.
First they budget for a Senate seat they know will be vacant for the next three years with P-Noy’s election to the presidency. Then they declare the unused budget for P-Noy’s seat as savings and quickly realign all that as additional MOOE or maintenance, operating and other expenses.
The obvious question is why treat “savings” as a gift for senators and their staff? Savings must be returned to the general fund at the Treasury. If you send your kasambahay to the store to buy some patis, you expect her to return the sukli. Hindi yan keep the change.
Of course they are treating us as fools. They expect us to believe they have more maintenance and other operating expenses to meet in the week and the half remaining of the year. Mr. Enrile himself admitted, the money was his “lambing” or in other words a “gift” as if it was his money to give.
They take us for fools a second time with their audit rules. A mere certification saying they spent the money for the intended purpose is sufficient. They want us to take their word for it.
Perhaps, in the long gone era when we had honorable statesmen in the Senate, their word of honor was enough. But as we can very well see today, the quality of our senators has gone to the dogs (no insult to dogs intended). After what we are seeing, there is no way their word on money matters can be trusted. Even if they swore to the truthfulness of their certifications, we can be sure they will still not be telling the whole truth.
So now they justify their procedures by saying it is the tradition since the time Senator Angara and Senator Drilon were Senate Presidents. That’s one questionable tradition they shouldn’t foist on us today.
Remember the Armed Forces tradition of giving the retiring Chief of Staff a “pabaon” exposed in a Senate hearing. It was denounced by some senators and presumably stopped. At least that General the senators shamed knew how to redeem his honor. Again, Ms. Gigi is right. Those senators are hypocrites.
We ought to shame our legislators into going back to a stricter way of liquidating such advances in an itemized manner with receipts registered with the BIR. If the money went to a staff member as some form of compensation or bonus, the staff must supply a proper tax account number and a report to the BIR must be made.
Talk is supposed to be cheap but at the Senate, it is costing the taxpayer an arm and a leg. When Mr. Enrile went through the details of the Senate accounts, it was clear they are spending billions of pesos to run the Senate. For our money, we got a shameful Cyber Crime bill and plagiarized speeches.
It is time for the professional association of accountants (PICPA?) to offer to audit the Senate accounts pro bono, for love of country. I respect the reputation for integrity of the current head of the Commission on Audit but it seems COA is compromised. It has agreed to a lot of the rules they now follow in auditing the Senate. A fresh private sector view is needed.
This mud slinging episode also brought out other things that have scandalized the public. For example, that front page full color photo of the 50th birthday party of Ms. Gigi at the Makati Shangri-La is now flooding social media.
Someone who attended that party told me that the hotel’s ballroom was full and it can take a thousand people. At the minimum of P1,500 a plate (cheap by Shangri-La standards) plus drinks and entertainment, you can do the math and wonder if you made a wrong career choice or think some people are just born lucky.
I do not doubt Ms. Gigi may have accumulated enough wealth through the course of her career to afford such a celebration. But in the light of the stark social disparity in our country and millions of our people still go to sleep hungry, such a high profile expensive affair for a public official is in bad taste and totally out of place.
Given the doubts Senators themselves expressed publicly on how Senate funds are being handled, realigned freely so to speak, many citizens and taxpayers now need to be reassured. The only person I know with the credibility to reassure taxpayers is the Chief Tax Collector herself.
It shouldn’t be asking too much of Ms. Kim Henares for her to summon the billing people of Makati Shangri-La to provide information on who paid the bill. Thereafter, Ms. Henares should be able to tell us if that person paid enough income tax to afford that festivity.
Filipinos are really disgusted as this reaction posted on Facebook showed: “What has transpired in the Senate in the most recent of days only proves once and for all the quality of leadership that we have ... the sense of entitlement these Bozos have foisted as if they belonged to some untouchable stratum of aristocracy --- and how unfeeling, selfish, insensitive they are of the citizenry who pay their taxes so that they may pursue their careers as megalomaniacs and egomaniacs.”
There was a time when I defended the continued existence of the Senate. Now I am not too sure. If we had a Tolentino, a Recto (Don Claro not Ralph), a Tanada, a Pelaez, a Paterno and a Saguisag in the Senate like we used to, they may be worth the expense. But now, we can abolish it tomorrow, save billions of pesos and not miss it.
I am now supportive of a unicameral parliamentary legislature if we ever decide to do cha cha. Of course the quality of our congressmen also leaves much to be desired. But at least we won’t have another chamber that contributes nothing but hot air, causes gridlock and drains the Treasury. One chamber is more than enough.
Then again, I feel helpless because I don’t believe our electorate is ready to take our democracy more seriously than a tele-novela. Voters elect senators as if they are fans voting for Mr. and Miss Philippine Movies.
Mr. Enrile may have made a mess of himself over the past week, showed us again his true loathsome character, but come July 1, expect to see not one but two Enriles there. The two sons of Erap will also be there as will the Cayetano brother and sister, a comedian and two action stars.
Indeed, just look at the leading candidates based on the latest surveys and you realize there is no reason to hope for reform. In fact, if you know what is good for your blood pressure, you will just try to see what’s funny about it.
But it is so painful to laugh when you know the laugh’s on you… on all of us as a nation. I have to agree with Ms. Gigi: the Senate stinks.
Sex advice
Napoleon P. Hubilla sent this one.
A woman went to her doctor for advice.
She told him that her husband had developed a penchant for anal sex, and she was not sure that it was such a good idea.
“Do you enjoy it?” the doctor asked.
“Actually, yes, I do” she said.
‘’Does it hurt you”, he asked?
“No. I rather like it!”
‘’Well, then,” the doctor continued, “there’s no reason that you shouldn’t practice anal sex, if that’s what you like, so long as you take care not to get pregnant.”
The woman was mystified. “What? You can get pregnant from anal sex?”
“Of course”, the doctor replied. “Where do you think politicians come from?”
 Boo Chanco’s e-mail address is bchanco@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @boochanco

How to explain Pinoy Pride to a foreigner

Jessica Sanchez, one of the latest symbols of Pinoy Pride, came to the Philippines for the American Idol finalists’ concert last Friday, September 21. Now if you all remember who Charice (Pempengco) is, her manager Courtney Blooding came out with a rather innocent and innocuous tweet where she asked “…why do the Philippines claim Jessica Sanchez?” Philippine media and Filipinos, predictable as ever, picked up on it, and even sparked a discussion and hashtag on Twitter #PINOYpride. Some Pinoys even tweeted replies to her rather strongly.
Why don’t we try answering Ms. Blooding’s questioncalmly and logically, for a change?

Let us get straight to the point: Filipinos claim Jessica Sanchez (as one of their own) because they know how to do little else.Filipino pride (or diminutively, Pinoy pride) is a hollow knee-jerk reaction of Filipinos whenever someone with a semblance of Filipino blood makes it big outside the Philippines. And it this Pinoy pride that makes them react the same way, each and every time.
Let me explain this further by elaborating three (3) characteristics of Pinoy pride:
Filipinos are saddled with a massive inferiority complex
The biggest tell-tale sign of Pinoy pride is that Filipinos need validation from foreigners that they exhibit/possess good qualities. This to me is a sign of a massive inferiority complex. You’ve got to admit though that perhaps almost 400 years of being under foreign influence has had adverse effects on the self-esteem of a nation. The thing is, look at the Japanese. Why did they rebound very quickly after being devastated during the Second World War? How were the Germans able to rebound after being bombed to smithereens? There has to be something else that’s keeping the Filipino from progressing.
Oh yes, Filipinos are not loyal to a higher collective ideal that is a “nation”. They are loyal at best to their clans, at worst, to themselves. There is no collective “Filipino” to speak of, only several indigenous ethnic groups living among and despite each other. If Filipinos refuse to come together how can you expect them to appreciate for themselves what gold lies in them/in front of them?
And to illustrate this point further, one only has to see that a by-product of Ms. Blooding’s tweets is an ongoing comparison among Filipinos of who is better: Jessica or Charice. Isn’t there enough room to like both of them? Why does everything have to be a false dichotomy for Filipinos? Why do individual Filipinos have to insist that their personal choice is better than someone else’s? This, again, to me, is yet another manifestation of that inferiority complex we collectively suffer as a people.
Filipinos have no collective achievement to speak of
As is the case with Jessica, Lea Salonga, Manny Pacquiao, and Charice, to name a few, Filipinos have hailed the individual accomplishments of Filipino artists abroad and trumpeted them as collective accomplishments of the entire Filipino ethnic group. Whether or not you agree with me, I assert that this is a fallacious and utterly ridiculous and stupid thing to do. These people succeeded because they put in the hard work needed to succeed, and not because of their Filipino heritage.
Filipinos do this as an escape to the reality that as an ethnic group they have no collective achievement to speak of. They are predisposed to be lazy, and prone to take the easy way out, which is why they exhibit this behavior. It is much easier to project yourself onto a successful person than it is to make yourself one.
Filipinos do not posses the operational efficiency of the Singaporeans. They do not exhibit the discipline of the Japanese. They have no engineering capability like the Germans. They have no martial tradition to speak of. These are all too hard for them.
Filipinos do not recognize gold that’s staring them in the face
Filipinos have the unenviable position of comprising a society that doesn’t know gold even if it’s hiding in plain sight. On top of that, they are a society renowned for perverting ideas and for turning gold (once they’ve seen it) into utter crap. Where else would you find a street revolution glorifying mob rule trumpeted as “democracy”?
If you’re looking for an example, look no further than the four (4) names I mentioned above. These people would not have become what they are now had they stayed in the Philippines. Filipinos are not the type to invest in developing talents long-term; they want immediate returns, and they want them NOW. After they’ve bled you dry, they dispose of you.
Filipino society is, by default, one that values mediocrity, conformance, and deference to elders above innovation, imagination, and out-of-the-box thinking. The minute Filipinos sense someone or something sticking out, they pull it back down. Filipinos ostracize people and ideas that are different; they are predisposed to judge these instead of trying to understand and learn from them.
Here are several more quotables from Ms. Blooding:
“why do the Philippines claim Jessica Sanchez? Jessica was born an raised in the US. I don’t THINK she speaks tagalog.

“which, to me, makes her true American. How many people in the US come from mixed cultural backgrounds? We r a melting pot.
“AND I just read that this concert is her first ever trip to the Philippines….
“isn’t a Filipino passport kind of a big indication of citizenship and a lack of one a big indication of no citizenship?”
“If only the people of the Philippines would stop looking elsewhere and focus on local things, maybe they could see the value of many of of the great people and resources there. Many great things and people there. It’s just a group mentality that it’s not good enough.
“It’s kind of a turn off to a foreigner such as myself cuz it can come across as ungrateful for the talent and resources god gave.”
“there is room for everyone an people will love or hate no matter what. But I just think it’s kind of wrong to say Jessica is part of Filipino pride when she is American before anything else.
“And the more I think about it, I start to get insulted on many levels. Ph can’t claim something that is made in USA. And they only wanted to claim Charice after people in the USA put value in her. It’s wrong for both singers. Sorry, I’m just feeling a bit indignant about the situation.”
“I mean if she had to mark on a form a particular country or culture, what would be? I assume American,”

“Please don’t condemn me for asking a cultural question,”
Well, sorry to disappoint you, Ms. Blooding. Filipinos condemn themselves routinely for asking cultural questions, what more foreigners? Not to say that it’s right, but they do it just as a scorpion can’t help but sting.
[Photo courtesy OKMagazine.com.]