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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Filipinos Display Stockholm Syndrome Towards Illegitimate Aquino Regime

Posted by  on Dec 16, 2014 
Filipinos Display Stockholm Syndrome Towards Illegitimate Aquino Regime
The Philippines can no longer be reformed from within.
The forces in power at the moment can best be described as a criminal syndicate which has usurped authority through a corrupted severely flawed unlawful election.
Majority of Filipinos however, are easy to fool and bamboozle, they are like kidnap victims who have become enamored with their kidnappers.
Mind Control
If Filipinos had a bit of sanity left – what ought to have happened in 2010 is declare a failure of elections and a caretaker government set up as the elections are conducted all over again.
If you look at the cost of conducting the election again (PhP 10.5 billion) – versus the THEFT that has occurred (runs into trillions) since the defacto Aquino government usurped authority shows it was definitely more cost effective to nip the error in the bud.
Pinoys however, being the cojones-less morons they are, opted to do nothing, so here we are.
Pissed about the trillions wasted by the Aquino regime’s spending – that’s the COST OF DOING NOTHING to stop the usurpation of power by these crooks we call “His Excellency”, “Your Honor”, “Governor”, “Mayor” and whatever bullshit titles they want to be called.
Don’t blame the politicians for stealing – that’s their nature.
Blame ourselves for allowing the politicians to get away with theft.
However, let’s not stop at blaming ourselves – after assigning blame, we then make the necessary correction to stop the BAMBOOZLE.
It is never too late to RESIST and EVICT the ILLEGAL Aquino regime.
Work towards a genuine FREE SOCIETY – free from the onerous regulations and taxation of government and the tentacles of its cronies.
Work for one that promotes the liberty of the individual and the freedom and openness of the economy.

Showbiz Kilig: What Intelligent People Don’t Have

January 1, 2015
by ChinoF
The recent wedding of celebrities Marian Rivera and Dingdong Dantes was a topic of the town, especially with how roads were blocked off to “exclusivize” traffic routes for guests, and no less than the president of the Philippines’ presence at the affair. While both aspects were criticized for the inconvenience to others and mixed up priorities, there was another aspect seen that may reflect the country’s dysfunctions. As fellow blogger FallenAngel raised, it’s a government official’s wedding, they’ll be slammed even if they spent their own money. But if it’s a private citizen, many come to the defense. Perhaps even if the private citizen might be an embezzler or crime lord. As long as it’s someone famous.
Photo courtesy of Inquirer
Photo courtesy of Inquirer
Another part of the Filipino mindset is revealed once again, that Filipinos seem to be willing fantards for celebrities and “elite.” What’s the derogatory term? Starstruck ignoramuses. It’s a funny irony, too. Many Filipinos seem to hate the “elite” for the problems of the country, but other Filipinos seem to admire this same “elite,” or the actors and singers associated with them. They fawn over the romance stories of these celebrities as if this is the most important thing in the world, further demonstrating the tsismis dysfunction that is a stubborn part of Filipino communities.
Again, it’s the same old sickness of focusing on personalities rather than principles or platforms. But it also demonstrates the same thing that appears when Manny Pacquiao is in the limelight again and Filipinos shout “proud to be Pinoy:” they look for the temporary high that comes with identifying with a celebrity, rather than look for a long-term solution that helps them achieves the same status of that celebrity. They seem to feel good when Pacquiao wins a fight, or when a Filipina beauty wins a crowns or even comes close. It seems to be nothing more than the barriotic attitude of showbiz kilig.
It also demonstrates what former American First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt said:
The smallness of Filipino attitudes, like what I described above, this fantard drunkenness of showbiz kilig is what helps keep Filipino society dysfunctional. As Benign0 said, this showbiz kilig helps keep people “in their place.” Many Filipinos remain satisfied being the fantards of others while they themselves lament the status of their lives. Hence, we have many children who want nothing more than to be famous actors or singers instead of useful scientists and mathematicians, while their alienated parents work feverishly in other countries to try and give them that life. Another part of the problem is that the peoplewho are supposed to be “intellectuals” and “educated,” or are even “activists” or “reformists” are actually themselves taken by this attitude of fantardism and showbiz kilig.
Thank goodness there are people with sane, civilized and great-minded attitudes who would have nothing of showbiz kilig. They know that showbiz is the worst place to look for people to admire and look up to, since it is nothing but entertainment. They are the real intellectuals, movers, doers and shakers. In other words, these people are not blinded by “heroes.” They hope that Filipinos idolize themselves instead of living stage props. Problem is, the small-minded Filipinos castigate them for being “mayabang.”
Of course, there are some people intellectuals admire, like Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr and Rosa Parks, or others like Stephen Covey, Peter Drucker, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and Warren Buffet. But as I reemphasize, it’s not the person that is important; it’s the ideas that they represent and practice that are important. If we focus on the platform and not the person, that can break us out of the trap of smallness and bring us to the level of great-mindedness.
Getting out of our showbiz fixation is perhaps one of the major steps to take in actually making the Philippines into a great country.

Enjoy and have a fabulous and wonderful time. Best wishes.

What Filipinos’ reaction to the DongYanWedding says about us

December 31, 2014
by FallenAngel
True to her form, GRP blogger Ilda wrote about what she thought about the recent church wedding between GMA Network stars Marian Rivera and Dingdong Dantes – in which no less than Philippine President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino was the best man – all which drew a lot of comments – generally irate and telling her off for being “bitter”, “inggit (envious)”, and “pakialamera (meddlesome or nosy)” – and sparked a “lively” discussion. She cited Article 25 of the Civil Code as something that the ostentatious display of wealth that was the DongYanWedding could have possibly violated, but the deeper implications she seemingly wanted to make are these:

Certain well-off Filipinos apparently have a need to display themselves ostentatiously, and;
Certain Filipinos who aren’t as well-off don’t seem to be bothered by it.
Not surprisingly, not only did many of the comments left fail to address these two implications, they also validated her opinions. Also, similar to how commentators reacted to GRP webmaster benign0’s article about gated communities in light of Junjun Binay’s incident at Dasmariñas Village, many got hung up on the legality but did not address the issues of social acceptability and impact on the overall bigger community.
Why do those implications exist? Ating alamin.
Before anything else, let us note that some of the more sensible reactions to that article – that’s not saying much, though – generally followed two lines of thought:
”It’s their money, how they spend it is their business”, and;
”Why don’t you write about corrupt government officials instead?”
Raquel Fortun, whom Ilda cited as having said that the notion of “thoughtless extravagance” is a subjective one, was actually spot on when she said that. Without quantitative standards for defining what extravagance is, one can easily argue that from his/her own point of view, there is no thoughtless extravagance. Yet the trouble with defining quantitative standards is that the value of money changes all the time; with the changes comes a periodic review of standards to be used. There are, however, also qualitative standards that Filipinos should agree on. These are more, I would like to believe, commonsensical. Unfortunately, common sense is not so common in the Philippines.
Back to the two “sensible” lines of thought I mentioned above.
It’s their money, how they spend it is their business – fair enough; I actually do agree with that. Yes, how they spend their money is indeed their business. Yet Filipinos must remember that anything that is broadcast to the public or represents a public figure – showbiz celebrities and politicians being the most obvious examples – is fair game for commentary. Just as GRP leaves its blog page and articles open for comments to the public, the wedding, details and all, once shown on live TV, opens itself up to scrutiny by virtue of being in the public eye.
Unfortunately, Filipinos don’t like scrutiny. Especially of something that makes them feel “happy”.
Why don’t you write about corrupt government officials instead? – GRP has been doing so for the longest time, but Filipinos seem to react to government corruption in two very old, tired, and frankly disappointing ways: they either brush it off as incurable and become indifferent to it, or they express shock and awe that such actually exists.
It is when those two lines of thought are taken together that something interesting about Filipinos and their reaction to ostentation comes up:
When Filipino politicians, celebrities, and private citizens go on ostentatious displays of wealth, the reaction of the greater community can range from indifference to absolute indignation. In the case of politicians and government officials, however, it is usually assumed that such ostentatious displays were made possible at the taxpayers’ expense. Malamang ninakaw daw sa kaban ng bayan iyan.
Keep in mind that ostentatious displays of wealth are hardly anything new or out of the blue in the Philippines; they are a way of asserting one’s social status. Filipinos are extremely conscious about how they are perceived by others, and are very obsessed with “being and appearing to be wealthy”. They are hobbled by a compulsion to exert their dominance over each other, plus they have this baseless sense of being more important than everyone else.
Now comes the “hard” question: what determines the greater communities’ reaction to such displays?
The answer, I think, is very simple, thanks to what a friend of mind once told me: whether they get something good out of it or not.
Filipinos have an unmistakable balato (dole-out) mentality – they are incorrigible beggars, freeloaders, and palamunins. Quite simply, give them money, free food, or whatever “prize”, and they will keep mum about such displays.
In the case of the #DongYanWedding, the balato was the “kilig (giddy)” moments that the couple and their love story exuded. These “kilig” sentiments can be regarded as some sort of drug: as benign0 has pointed out in another article, grand weddings have a proven track record of effectively distracting the masses from their wretchedness. And as I have pointed out before, Filipinos are desperate for good vibes, feel-good moments, and opportunities to be happily distracted from their self-made misery.
And thus, yet another batch of realizations about Filipinos comes out:
Criticizing showbiz personalities, politicians, and others who make them feel good is an absolute no-no. Walang basagan ng trip, and;
Filipinos are not individualist, or collectivist, in the strictest sense of the words. They are incorrigibly self-centered, hypersensitive, shallow, easily distracted, and easily swayed moochers.
Finally, take note that while Filipinos here in Metro Manila (and possibly beyond) were enamored and obsessed with watching the wedding, typhoon Seniang was battering parts of Visayas and Mindanao. The current death toll is up to 53,according to Reuters. Now that the wedding is over, where are the Malacañang mouths when you need them? What sort of priorities do our leaders and their government have?
Around the region, Indonesian authorities believe that they have found the remains of AirAsia flight #QZ8501, and have recovered some of the bodies as well. On a personal note, it is truly heart-wrenching to hear about yet another airline incident in this region. Filipinos should be concerned; if such an accident happens to a Filipino airline, are we adequately equipped to conduct search and rescue operations. Even if we were, would we conduct them in a timely and orderly manner?
The answers to the questions above are painfully obvious. Filipinos, however, want none of the pain that comes with coming face-to-face with their wretched reality; they would rather stay in their fantasy “kilig” world and in their “contented” stupor.

Amazing Health Benefits of Guava Fruits

Guavas are a very common type of fruit but are often neglected because of their hardness & presence of seeds. But it is what I call as super food! It contains goodness that will make you definitely want to eat this fruit but we are not talking about having sugar rich guava jams or jellies. For getting these super benefits of guava, you need to grab a fresh one and bite on it.

Take a look at 10 Guava benefits and you will never overlook this fruit again!

1. Rich in Vit C:

Guava contains Vit C and it helps protect cells and lower cancerous damage to them.

2. Lesser Diabetes Risk and Cleaned System:

Fibre is important for lowering blood sugar levels. At the same time, it is good in cleansing digestive system and maintaining free bowel movement. Guavas are rich in fibres. The more your system stays clean, the happier you will be from inside.

3. Eye Health Improvement:

Vit A or retinol is responsible for good eye sight. Guava is rich in retinol, so if you don’t like carrots, you can try a guava for improving  your eyesight

4. Folate Content:

Guavas contain a mineral known as folate. It helps promote fertility in humans.

5. Regulation of blood pressure levels:

Potassium in guavas helps normalise blood pressure levels. A banana and a guava contains almost the same amount of potassium.

6. Trace Element Copper Enriched:

Guavas contain the trace element copper which is very good in maintaining good functioning of the thyroid gland. Improper functioning of thyroid gland can cause a lot of health problems.

7. Manganese Richness:

Guavas are rich in manganese which helps the body to absorb other key nutrients from the food that we eat. When our food gets properly utilised, we get all the key nutrients like biotin, vitamins, etc.

8. Nervous Relaxant:

Guava is rich in magnesium which acts as a nervous relaxant. It helps to relax muscles and nerves of the body. So after a hard work out, a guava is certainly what you need to relax your muscles and give your system a nice energy boost.

9. Healthy Mind:

It helps to keep your brain functions positive by maintaining good blood flow and also by infusing it with Vit B3 and Vit B6. Vit B6 is pyridoxine which is good for nerves. It keeps your nerves relaxed.
Winter has set in and it’s the season for some delicious guavas. We all love to eat this fruit and several varieties are available. Guava is basically a tropical fruit that is believed to have its origin in Central America where it is also known as “sand plum”. Guava tree is a tropical evergreen shrub. In fact, guava is a large berry which is round or oval in shape with light green or light yellow skin. The colour of its flesh varies from white or pink to dark red and has edible seeds.
There are various species of guavas which differ in terms of fragrance, taste and appearance. Generally it has a strong, sweet and pungent fragrance and its flavour ranges from strawberry or lemon to tropical. It is widely available in India and is locally known as “peru”. In fact, it is quite cheap so everyone can afford it. In India, roadside vendors are often seen selling guavas.
Besides its unique flavour and fragrance, guava has been hailed has one of the super fruits because of its numerous health promoting qualities. This humble fruit is known for its medicinal properties, thanks to the sugars, vitamins and minerals present in it. It is extraordinarily rich in vitamin C and also contains carotene and antioxidants that are beneficial for skin health. Guavas are consumed in varying degrees of ripeness. They are also used in cooking as an ingredient in both sweet and savoury dishes. Guava juice is also a refreshing drink.

Guava: Skin Benefits

Guava has an important role to play in skincare since it is abound in vitamin C, antioxidants and carotene, all of which are beneficial for your skin. Thus, guava pulp is often used in the manufacture of cosmetic care lotions for the face and body. The benefits of guava for skin are as follows.
11. Improves Complexion:
Pink guava helps in beautifying your skin, thus enabling it to regain its radiance and freshness. To improve your complexion, you can prepare a simple guava scrub at home. For this purpose, mash some guava flesh with an egg yolk and apply it on your face. Rinse off after 20 minutes with warm water. When used once or twice a week, this scrub will remove dead cells from your skin and lighten your complexion. It will also remove impurities, thus providing your skin a fresh and invigorated feeling.

12. UV Protection:

Pink guavas contain twice the amount of lycopene present in tomatoes. Lycopene is an antioxidant that protects your skin from being damaged by UV rays and environmental pollution. A guava provides about 2.9 grams of lycopene.

13. Anti-ageing Properties:

Guava is a rich source of vitamins A, B, C and potassium which are good antioxidants and detoxifiers. They fight free radicals, thus keeping your skin glowing and free from premature signs of ageing like wrinkles and fine lines. Besides, lycopene protects the healthy cells from toxins that accumulate in the body due to metabolism and environmental pollution. These toxins also cause pre mature ageing by damaging the DNA in charge of growth and development.

14. Natural Skin Toner:

The high concentration of vitamins, minerals and nutrients in guava helps in keeping your skin toned, fresh and wrinkle free. Guava is effective in enhancing skin texture, tightening the loosened skin and reviving the lost elasticity of the skin. The astringent qualities of guavas keep your skin free from blemishes, acne, wrinkles and pimples. Washing your face with the decoction of immature guava fruit and its leaves beautifies your skin.

15. Treatment of Acne and Dark Spots:

If you are suffering from acne and dark spots, you can take some guava leaves and mash them to make a smooth paste. Clean your face and apply it on the acne and dark spots. Doing this daily will heal your acne.

16. Skin Hydration:

Proper hydration is vital for healthy skin. Water plays an important role in keeping your skin hydrated. Thus, it is recommended to have 8 glasses of water in a day. Guava is an excellent source of water with 81% of the fruit comprising of water. In this way, it plays an important role in skin hydration.

17. Treatment of Skin Problems:

A guava provides more than twice the recommended daily value of vitamin C which is excellent for skin healing as it contributes to generation of collagen, the substance that imparts firmness to the skin. Besides, it provides about 1.4 micrograms of vitamin K which is 2% of the recommended daily value. This vitamin improves blood coagulation, impairment of which causes skin redness and irritation. This makes it beneficial in treating dark circles, spider veins, rosaceae, acne irritation and splotchiness of skin.

18. Treatment of Blackheads and Skin Itchiness:

In case of blackheads, you can blend the leaves of the guava fruit with little water and apply it as a scrub on your nose to remove blackheads. Guava leaves can also rid you of skin itchiness as they contain allergy blocking compounds.

Guava: Hair Benefits

Guava is a powerhouse of nutrients including Vitamin A, vitamin C, folic acid, potassium, copper, manganese, fibre, flavonoids and other phytochemicals. Thus, it is beneficial for healthy hair growth and maintenance.

19. Combats Hair Loss:

Being extremely rich in vitamin C, guava is one of those fruits that promote healthy hair growth. It also helps in combating hair loss problems.

How to Select and Store?

Selection: Guavas are available in different varieties such as the Chinese Guava, Strawberry, Lemon,Apple and Mountain Guava. In tropical regions, they are available all the year round. Guavas with red flesh such as Thai maroon flesh are more nutritious than Green Apple guavas. On ripening, the skin of the guavas generally turns from green to yellow, their flesh softens and they develop a fragrant fruity aroma. While purchasing guavas, make sure that you choose fresh fruits with their skins intact without any cuts, bruises or patches. Your choice of guava also depends upon the variety that you are buying. If you are buying pink guavas, choose the ones that are firm and devoid of soft spots. Their skin should be green with a yellow tinge. While buying white Thai guavas, make sure that they are free from blemishes or soft spots and their skin should be bright green in colour, like a Granny Smith apple. Overly soft guavas or the ones with soft spots or discolouration should be avoided.
When the guavas are picked from the tree, they are mature but not ripe. In other words, though the fruit has reached its optimum size and shape, the starches present in it have not been converted into sugar. These starches will get converted into sugar after a few days which will cause the fruit to soften and emit a wonderful guava fragrance. Ripe guavas generally have a characteristic colour and aroma.
Storage: Guavas can be stored at room temperature for a few days. Mature but green guavas can last for 2 to 5 weeks when kept at a regulated temperature between 46F and 55F and relative humidity of 85% to 95%. To hasten ripening, the guava can be kept wrapped in a paper with a banana or apple. Fully ripe guavas can be refrigerated for a few days. Pink and white guavas yield to gentle pressure if they are ripe. Ripe guavas can be kept in plastic bag or container and refrigerated for a few days. It is advisable to use them within a day or two. Unripe guavas can be stored in a plastic container or bag and can last for about two weeks. Freezing the guavas can make them last longer, even up to a year. To freeze a guava, cut it and place it in a freezer container. Cover it with light simple syrup and provide a little extra space in the container for expansion.

 Tips for Usage (Cooking/ Eating)

As stated earlier, guava is a nutritious fruit with edible seeds and skin. Several varieties are available with each variety having a unique flavour and aroma. Before proceeding to eat guavas, it is necessary to wash them in cold running water to remove any dust and insecticide residues. The floral ends and remnants i.e. sepals should be removed and the tips ends should be cut with a sharp knife. Guavas can then be cubed or sliced like an apple. Guavas should be eaten with their skin on as the edible rind contains abundant amounts of vitamin C. Even the seeds can be eaten; and are very tasty and crunchy. Besides being eaten raw, guavas are often cooked to eliminate their strong odour as some people do not like it. Given below are some tips and recipes to enjoy this exotic fruit.
1. Guava juice and nectar are refreshing drinks and are often used as an ingredient in cold or frozen drinks or in mixed liquor beverages.
2. Due to its unique flavour, guavas are often used to make jelly. They have a high content of pectin, a chemical substance that helps jelly to set. The juice from half ripe guavas can be combined with hibiscus flowers or low pectin fruits to make jelly. Guavas are also used in butters, jams, marmalades and preserves.
3. Fresh guavas can be simply sliced and topped with a little sugar and cream. Guava cubes can be added to other tropical fruits in a salad. Guavas can also be used with cheeses or in apple dishes or as sauces for meat and poultry. Another way to eat a guava is to simply cut it in half and sprinkle with a little lemon juice; and eat flesh and seeds with a spoon, discarding the skin.
4. Freshly extracted juice of pinkish or reddish fleshed guava is not only sweet and yummy but also rich in vitamins.  In fact, it can give a tough competition to any refreshment. You can easily prepare it at home. Wash and peel a guava. Add some sugar, ½ inch ginger (optional) and cold water; and blend it in a blender or juicer. Filter out the hard seeds and add some ice cubes while serving. This juice is quite tasty and refreshing especially in hot weather.
5. You can prepare a cool and refreshing drink by combining guava pulp and lemonade with a dash of lemon juice and sugar syrup. For this purpose, take about 8 large guavas, peel and cut them into big pieces and blend them in a blender with very little water. After removing and straining, add 4 teaspoons lemon juice, sugar syrup and a few drops of light pink colour. Mix well and keep it in a bottle. While serving, add 1 teaspoon of this mixture and 3 ice cubes to ½ a bottle of lemonade.
6. You can prepare a delicious salad by combining roasted guava with feta cheese. For this purpose, cut the guavas into thin round slices and marinate them with some chopped parsley, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, black pepper powder and salt. Roast the slices till they turn golden brown and caramelize the pine nuts with honey. Mix the roasted slices of guava with caramelized pine nuts, lettuce leaves and cubes of feta cheese. Pour this dressing on the salad and garnish with chopped parsley and feta cheese. It can be served cold.
7. Guava can be combined with apple to prepare a delicious curry. For this purpose, take two apples and two guavas; and cut them into big pieces. Melt two tablespoons ghee in a pot and put 3 cloves and 3 cinnamon pieces. Roast 10 to 12 raisins and 4 to 5 cashew nuts for two minutes and then add the guavas and apples. Cook for some time and add 2 tablespoons red chilli powder, 1 ½ tablespoons turmeric powder, 1 tablespoon coriander seeds powder and cumin seeds powder; and some salt and sugar. Remove and stir the mixture.
8. The sweet taste and strong fragrance of Florida pink guava make it suitable for dessert type dishes. Guava kheer is one such dessert that is quiet simple to prepare. All you need to do is pressure cook the guava and remove the seeds. Sieve it through a strainer. Adding sugar and milk to the pulp, bring it to a boil. When the sugar gets dissolved, add cardamom powder and garnish with roasted dry fruits.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Did the Dingdong Dantes-Marian Rivera wedding violate the Philippine Civil Code against ‘thoughtless extravagance’?

December 31, 2014
by Ilda
It was hard to ignore the recently-concluded nuptials of Philippine celebrity couple Dingdong Dantes and Marian Rivera. The news of their “royal wedding” was all over the local mainstream and social media. Their highly-anticipated wedding has been the talk of the town for months. The appearance of no less than Philippine President Benigno Simeon (BS) Aquino as the couple’s Witness of Honor probably helped build the hype even more. The country’s current who’s who were present during the celebration including queen of talk show and Presidential sister, Kris Aquino:
The GMA-7 actor arrived at the wedding venue in a black Ducati motorcycle, wearing a Randy Ortiz cream suit. Meanwhile, the stunning bride wore a Michael Cinco ecru lace wedding gown studded with Swarovski crystals and a pearl tiara.
President BS Aquino managed to find time out of his 'busy' schedule to grace the 'royal' occasion.
President BS Aquino managed to find time out of his ‘busy’ schedule to grace the ‘royal’ occasion.
While a lot of people were excited about the wedding celebration, I couldn’t help but feel a bit turned-off by the blatant display of decadence. There is no doubt that the telegenic couple looked beautiful on their “special day” but I couldn’t stop thinking about what the poor people are thinking about the extravagant celebration.
Why do some members of the Philippine elite feel the need to show off their wealth knowing millions of Filipinos suffer in abject poverty? I thought I was the only one who felt the wedding was over the top, but a lot of folks on Twitter agreed with my view that the excessive display of wealth left a bad taste in the mouth particularly since millions of Filipinos struggle to find their next meal everyday.
The venerable lawyer, Ferdinand Topacio even reminded us that there is a law against “thoughtless extravagance” specifically Article 25, Chapter 2: Human Relations under the Philippine Civil Code, which states:
Art. 25. Thoughtless extravagance in expenses for pleasure or display during a period of acute public want or emergency may be stopped by order of the courts at the instance of any government or private charitable institutions.
The country’s leading Forensic Pathologist Raquel Fortun who held the view that the 2 million peso wedding gown was excessive asked this question: “But what court will stop the wedding though?” What court, indeed? Especially since BS Aquino gave his blessing for the wedding to go ahead and had time for it despite his “busy” schedule. Likewise, motorists and commuters along E. Rodriguez and other streets near the Immaculate Conception Cathedral were even rerouted in Cubao, Quezon City during the big day.
Fortun also said that one can argue that “thoughtless extravagance” might be viewed as subjective since the Philippines is not in a “period of acute public want or emergency”. To which I responded that in my opinion, the Philippines has been in a permanent period of acute public want or emergency for a long time.
The below quote from a blogpost explains the concept behind the civil code:
1. Reason for Curtailing Thoughtless Extravagance
Thoughtless extravagance during emergencies may incite the passions of those who cannot afford to spend.
2. Who can Bring the Action?
Only a charitable institutions (whether government or private) may bring the action. The Mayor of a city, should he desire to stop an alleged display of extravagance by a social organization cannot summarily order the stopping all by himself. He has to ask for a court order. A Mayor indeed cannot just take the law into his own hands, no matter how noble or sincere his motive may be.
In the case of the Dingdong Dantes-Marian Rivera wedding, hardly anyone from the public complained about the excesses during the celebration. And it was obvious that no one was going to stop the event for the wedding of the year.
This brings us to the part where the author of the Civil Code failed to consider the fact that sadly, Filipinos in general do not see anything wrong with “thoughtless extravagance in expenses for pleasure or display during a period of acute public want or emergency.” A lot of Filipinos even go gaga over the actions of the elite who act like members of the royal family.
There are times when I thought that the decadence of the Philippine elite will somehow push the masses over the edge into finally storming the country’s gated communities. But I don’t think Filipinos have it in them to demand for a sense of decency from people who can make a difference in their future. Until then, those who suffer from abject poverty will remain where they are. How they can live in miserable state is beyond me. It seems their wretched existence is not enough to make them rebel against excess.
[Photo courtesy GMA Network.]

Crash site of AirAsia Flight #QZ8501 located, no survivors expected to be found

December 31, 2014
by benign0
Possibly no survivors was the grim prognosis as more and more information trickled in following the pinpointing of the location of the crash site of AirAsia Flight QZ8501 which went missing last Sunday, the 28th December 2014. Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported as of 8:38 p.m. that according to the most recent update from the Indonesian Navy, more than 40 bodies have been recovered from the site. However, there have since been conflicting reports as to exactly how many have actually been found.
Henry Bambang Soelistyo, Indonesia’s National Search and Rescue Agency chief later clarified
“Today we evacuated three bodies and they are now in the warship Bung Tomo,” Bambang Soelistyo told a news conference in Jakarta, adding that they were two females and one male.
Navy spokesman Manahan Simorangkir told AFP earlier that according to naval radio a warship had recovered more than 40 bodies from the sea. But he later said that report was a miscommunication by his staff.
Debris spotted by search crews earlier confirmed to be parts of QZ8501(Source: Photo posted by @CNN on Twitter.)
Debris spotted by search crews earlier confirmed to be parts of QZ8501
(Source: Photo posted by @CNN on Twitter.)
This brings closure to questions on the fate of QZ8501 which departed Surabaya on Sunday and was supposed to have arrived in Singapore at 8:30 a.m. (Singapore time) had it not gone missing. Reuters reports, “About 30 ships and 21 aircraft from Indonesia, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and the United States have been involved in the search.”
Another AirAsia jet accident: Flight Z2272 arriving from Manila overshoots Kalibo airport runway.(Source: Photo posted by @jetdsantos on Twitter)
Another AirAsia jet accident: Flight Z2272 arriving from Manila overshoots Kalibo airport runway.
(Source: Photo posted by @jetdsantos on Twitter)
The Indonesian Navy is currently busy with operations to recover debris and bodies from the wreckage, the main parts of which are thought to be lying on the seabed. The United States will be deploying a second warship, the USS Fort Worth to assist in the recovery effort.
As all this transpired,another AirAsia plane was involved in a mishap, this time in Kalibo City, Philippines. The plane, an Airbus A320-200 (similar to that of the ill-fated QZ8501) arriving from Manila overshot the runway as it attempted to land in windy weather coming to rest in the grassy area past the end of the runway where it remains as of this writing. Flight Z2272, Manila-Kalibo had 159 passengers and crew aboard but no injuries or casualties have been reported.
[Featured photo of Jakarta Airport official courtesy Independent.co.uk.]

Will Pope Francis’s 2015 visit to the Philippines bring out the best or worst in the Filipino?

December 30, 2014
by benign0
Pope Francis’s visit to the Philippines is shaping out to be the country’s biggest coming event. Already there’s a scramble to fill precious slots that would bring ordinary folk within the pontiff’s breathing space — whether it be seats in the pope’s flight from Rome to Manila, or a place in His Eminence’s dining table, Filipinos are clambering over one another for a piece of St Peter’s successor and God’s earthly vassal.
A good thing papal climbers might want to keep in mind in the midst of all this is Jesus Christ’s message in Luke 14:8-11…
When someone invites you to a wedding feast, do not take the place of honor, for a person more distinguished than you may have been invited. If so, the host who invited both of you will come and say to you, `Give this man your seat.’ Then, humiliated, you will have to take the least important place. But when you are invited, take the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he will say to you, `Friend, move up to a better place.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all your fellow guests. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.
ABS-CBN Network's 'offensive' Pope Francis merchandise.
ABS-CBN Network’s ‘offensive’ Pope Francis merchandise.
That lesson aside (or rather having long sailed far above most Filipinos’ heads), the circus, it seems, is already coming to town
Already a gaffe coming from no less than the Philippines’ biggest media enterprise is already making waves. ABS-CBN Network had earlier advertised souvenir T-shirts with the messages “No race. No religion. I embrace diversity” and “Ganito ako, ganyan ka. Who am I to judge.” The messages were supposedly meant to convey the spirit of openness that Pope Francis espouses. Unfortunately, Pope Francis does, as a matter of fact, serve as the head of the world’s largest organised religion, something that the Philippines’ Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) highlighted as potentially “misleading”. CBCP president further emphasized…
“Francis has never said and taught that religion and race do not matter, because they most certainly do. It is what selfish, uncharitable and judgmental people do with religion and race that is a problem.”
Apparently both parties in this quaint exchange seem to have presumed that the good Pope couldn’t speak for himself. Fair enough perhaps, considering the Pope himself may not have much of a choice when it comes to diplomatic protocol. During his visit to the Philippines, exclusive chit chat with President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino III and his sisters come first in the agenda of the Malacanang leg…
After the singing of the national anthem and the hoisting of the flags of the two states, Pope Francis will proceed to the Reception Hall for the signing of the official guestbook of Malacañang. He will then be ushered into the Music Room for the courtesy call where Aquino’s immediate family members, including his sisters, will be introduced to the Pontiff.
This, despite what will likely to be a queue of Filipinos hoping to be invited to the Malacanang delegation. People who don’t own a prized slot in Aquino’s inner circle shouldn’t hold their breath. According to Communications Secretary “Sonny” Herminio Coloma, it is “customary for Cabinet officials to be present.”
The mass to be celebrated by Pope Francis at the Manila Cathedral following his Malacanang courtesy call is also reportedly reserved for the Philipines’ Catholic elite. According to Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, “the Mass on January 16, 2015, will be for bishops, priests, and consecrated persons” only. To be fair, subsequent masses to be celebrate by the pontiff at Manila’s Luneta park and in Tacloban City will be open to the public. Tacloban City was the centre of destruction and loss of life suffered by Filipinos when Super Typhoon Haiyan struck in November, 2013.
What many observers are speculating on is how the who’s-who of Filipino politicians in the race for plum government posts in the lead up to the 2016 elections will be capitalising on the papal visit for their political ends. 2015, as such, is a campaign year and there will be epal (a Filipinoism for “grandstanding”) aplenty. Still, the Pope will be a tough nut to crack. The pontiff is known to shun VIP treatment and overbearing security measures. During his visit to Israel and the Palestinian territories in May this year, he opted to decline the use of armoured cars, preferring instead to ride his usual white open-top “popemobile”. So finding a way to hook Pope Francis into a media stunt to jump-start (or resuscitate) a public image will be top of mind for Filipino politicians in the coming weeks.
Pope Francis also does not use big armoured limousines as his official means of road travel in Rome preferring, instead, a Ford Focus, a more humble mid-sized sedan, for use as his personal ride. This simple lifestyle will likely put to shame Filipino politicians who often travel around the country’s roads in big black SUVs more than twice the size of the Pope’s car, in motorcades consisting of chase vehicles bristling with gun barrels poking out of their windows, and accompanied by entourages that would dwarf the team of aides that attend to the needs of God’s earthly prince.

Finally, it should be noted that the Pope will be visiting the selfie capital of the world. So along with crowd control there will be selfie control initiatives as well. An article published on the Pope’s official Philippine Visit website quoted Catholic radio anchor Ansel Beluso’s appeal to the Pope’s Fillipino fans…
“May I just say this: When we take a selfie with a life-size image of Pope Francis on a standee, can we please be more reverential about it? I find it disrespectful when people wrap their arms [around] the Pope’s shoulder, acting like they’re on the same level with him, grinning, patting his head, and mocking his baldness,” he said.
There you go. Many Filipinos have yet to learn the key lessons that one would think will have been learned by the time they graduated kindergarten. Not to worry. As pointed out earlier, the Bible has much to teach grown-ups about good manners too.
[Featured thumbnail photo: Pope Francis on the popemobile courtesyWheels.ca.]