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Archive for the “Politics” Category

The most hotly contested seat in the world has finally gained the man who will sit on its throne as Barack Obama, the first ever African-American President of the United States of America, sweeps the Presidential elections with a staggering landslide.

Many have projected an Obama win early on in the presidential race but McCain fought ’til the end.  Now that the US has decided the fate of its country, it’s time for us, Filipinos, to ruminate on our own. (more…)

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Yesterday I left a stage in my life that has been so special to me and entered into more unfamiliar territory.  Yesterday, I turned twenty, leaving my teenage days behind and entered the world of the “twenty-somethings.”

I hope I can say that the transition was easy, that leaving behind a lifestyle you’ve led for seven years is like chaging clothes for the day, but it was not.  Many have been witness to my sudden bouts of emotional fits the past few weeks, as well as my tendencies to act childish in an attempt to stop time and prevent growing altogether.  To these people, for the unnecessary burdens I may have caused them, I apologize. (more…)

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Mad props to INQUIRER.Net for this quick and complete transcript of the recently-concluded State of the Nation Address of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

What follows is full text of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s State of the Nation Address:

STATE OF THE NATION ADDRESS OF PRESIDENT GLORIA MACAPAGAL-ARROYO DURING THE 2ND REGULAR SESSION OF THE 14TH CONGRESS OF THE REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, 28 July 2008

Thank you, Speaker Nograles. Senate President Villar. Senators and Representatives. Vice President de Castro, President Ramos, Chief Justice Puno, members of the diplomatic corps, ladies and gentlemen:

I address you today at a crucial moment in world history.

Just a few months ago, we ended 2007 with the strongest economic growth in a generation. Inflation was low, the peso strong and a million new jobs were created. We were all looking to a better, brighter future. (more…)

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We know that our country needs–to put iit n medical terms–a liver cleanse, a complete detoxification, a heart bypass and a brain surgery.  We all acknowledge the need to spare our system of corruption and greediness to fully effect change and developments in society.

Most of us have expressed our grievances over our failed electoral system, seeing as to how it has been used to keep power-hungry personalities safe in their comfortable positions.  But still, some of us still hope for a spark, a catalyst that will drive change throughout the system.  While many detest our electoral system, I think there are still a considerable few who have hope in it.

So, if you’re one of those who still hope and believe, you may want to attend Bloggers’ Kapihan and Comelec‘s Bloggers’ briefing on poll automation. (more…)

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The past few weeks have become witness for the beleaguering of both the Mainstream media and the Pinoy blogosphere.  I’ve wanted to write about this for so long but thought of holding off some of my thoughts until all the flames thrown have dissipated.

Blogging and Ethics
Let’s start with the first issue triggered by an unsolicited comment from Dean Luis Teodoro, a staunch ethics advocate who’s also part of the Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR).  Dean Teodoro called on Mainstream Media journalists to blog so that they could be an example for people who irresponsibly post things online, saying that these people who have no account for ethics are bringing about disastrous effects with the erroneous and sometimes maligned information they post.

Of course, the Pinoy blogging community took offense and went on a blogging tirade against the professor.  Most have resented Dean Teodoro’s comment, saying that the veteran journalist and professor had no right to impose his “ethics” upon bloggers.  Some have also criticized the mainstream media in particular, saying that most journalists don’t practice these ethics anyway, so why impose them on the bloggers? (more…)

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[UPDATE] As of 2 a.m. this early morning, Ces and the rest of the kidnapped victims have been freed from captivity, after a 24-hr ultimatum set by PNP Chief Avelino Razon.  No ransom was reportedly given to the kidnappers.  Then again, that’s what they say.

Known for being a feisty broadcast journalist (both in practice and, as we’ve seen in the Manila Pen seige, fashion), Ces Drilon is currently a captive of the famed Abu Sayyaf rebel group down in the islands of Sulu. As of today, the kidnappers have extended their deadline for the ransom money indefinitely. Which says a lot of things about the motives of her kidnappers.

Many have been said about the Drilon’s current situation. Some say she deserved it for pursuing a very dangerous scoop (motives of which are still undetermined). Some say the ransom should be paid, albeit running the risk of encouraging such terroristic acts. Others have criticized the news blackout called by ABS-CBN, crying Right to Information as their defense. Some others like me, who have seen and read one too many conspiracy theory stories, are cynical about the situation. (more…)

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Let’s move!

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Photo courtesy of the YouthACTNow website.

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Awareness. Community. Training.
Dito nakasentro ang General Program of Action ng ISA.

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498192691_c89d7f5622.jpgMa’am Janette Toral tagged me earlier and it prompted me to write about this topic. Truth be told, I got a lot of insights from the last iBlog Mini held at the College of Law–brief as my stay is–and it prompted me to be more aware of the potentials of blogging during Elections in the country. Personally, as a (hopefully) future media practitioner, one of the fields I want to dabble in is Election reporting. I don’t know why but I get the kicks out of the election season. Maybe because it’s a sign that somehow, even after all the totalitarian measures imposed upon us by the government, the elections still gives us hope and the voice to speak out what’s on top of our heads.

Anyway, going back to Ma’am Janette’s tag, elections are a hotbed of personalities slugging it out to be the next people’s choice. But more vital than personalities, I believe, are issues and their responses to them. One barometer for gauging the viability of a candidate for a certain post is his stance on pertinent issues that concern the nation.

If I were to interview any candidate, here are a string of issues I would want them to have an opinion on:

  • Foreign Policy. It’s as important as any other issue out there. Will the next president still allow himself/herself to be controlled by foreign forces (IMF/WB) or countries (US/Europe)? I believe we’ve had enough of the influence the States has over our domestic policies. It’s time to act on our own. How about JPEPA? OFWs and the Brain Drain? Exchange Rate? (more…)

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Seven Years. Wow. That’s a long time. I can’t believe 7 years have already gone since we toppled a corrupt president, only to replace him with someone far worse than we’ve imagined.

kasama-sa-edsa.pngI fondly remember that day. The people went out the streets in protest of the rejection of the Senator-juries to open the “Second Envelope,” an evidence rumored to be so compelling that it would assure the impeachment of then President Estrada.

I was actually frustrated that the revolt ended quickly. I wanted to stay tune to the TV more and see what else would transpire. My aunt, who then works at Robinson’s Galleria, always had fond stories to share. She had a hard time going to work everyday because of the volume of people assembline at the EDSA shrine, but she said that seeing the Filipino people in solidarity made the trip to work a bit less tedious. (more…)

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Students of the premier state university of the Philippines have but one thing to boast about: that they are studying in the leading academic institution in the country. For years students and alumni have wrung the ears of incoming freshmen, telling them how fortunate they are to be studying in the best university there is.

We all know how UP has trumpeted its greatness over the decades. We all know of the distinguished alumni who have etched their everlasting marks in the history of our country. We all know of the great and incomparable UP culture of excellence that has thrived all throughout the years.

Modesty aside, it is therefore safe to assume that UP is indeed great. But can that greatness be encapsulated in mere humble words such as “UP: Ang Galing Mo”? (more…)

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For all it’s worth it’s practically useless to still babble about an issue that has already dissipated. In the tradition of the Malu Fernandez and Desperate Housewives issue, an act of such nature can only be dubbed as “fanning the flames that had already died.”

But as a discerning journalism student and, hopefully, a future media practitioner, I can’t help but reflect and assess the situation which has been devoted much media attention. I tried not to talk about it extensively when the issue was at its peak because the apparent bias will be, well, very apparent on me. In fact, I burst out in anger and frustration the moment I learned about it and made a blog entry that can possibly be labeled seditious if anyone attempts to file a case against me.

And so now that somehow the anger isn’t there anymore (or at least has decreased in intensity), I can now clearly give my two cents’ worth about the issue devoid of any bias and prejudices. But then again, as a disclaimer, I’m a Journalism student and, hopefully, a future media practitioner so that pretty much speaks for itself on where I stand on this issue.

Okay, let’s proceed with dissecting this one bit by bit.

(more…)

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Last Saturday I attended iBlog Mini: Blogging and the 2010 elections where it was discussed how the blogging community can effectively help in the reportage of the next Presidential election.

pondopuhunan.jpgThe next election (if it is to take place) is a pivotal point in Philippine history as it marks the end of the road for the tyranny of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. That is to say, however, if an election takes place. The threat of Charter Change still looms beneath the shadows of Mickey Mouse and his rodent allies, so be prepared for a No-El scenario.

Reading through the pages of the Philippine Daily Inquirer last Wednesday, I chanced upon a two-page full-spread ad of the Nacionalista Party, sporting images of its viable elected officials juxtaposed with the images of Laurel, Quezon, Marcos and other members of the party who became President of this country. The message is a no-brainer as the ad even sported Manny Villiar’s ever-popular adage which has been used and abused since he ran for the Senate in 2001.

Weeks before, a new President to the Liberal Party was sworn in. With Drilon’s wing recognized as the legitimate party, GMA’s cohorts in LP lost their bid in landing a Presidential candidate. Mar Roxas takes the place of Drilon as Party President and erstwhile official Presidential candidate of LP in 2010.

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…it is also stupid, STUPID STUPID!!!

What’s the business of the government arresting members of the media for allegedly abetting rebellion during the Manila Peninsula standoff this afternoon?! The government has no RIGHT arresting members of the press for DOING THEIR JOBS.

A GMA News team, including reporter Sandra Aguinaldo and the network’s systems engineer Allan Gutierrez, were seized by police and loaded onto a police bus. Aside from the GMA News team, police also arrested Malaya columnist Ellen Tordesillas.

It was not clear why the Aguinaldo, her crewmen and Tordesillas were being held by police.

Aguinaldo is among reporters who covered the unfolding crisis that began in the morning when Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV and Brig. Gen. Danilo Lim walked out of their coup hearing at a Makati regional trial court.

Police did not bind the hands of the reporters unlike those who have earlier arrested.

Authorities earlier loaded some reporters and photojournalists onto a separate police bus after they failed to convince police they are members of media organizations, radio DZBB reported.

From GMANews.TV

Alright, provided some media people went overboard with their coverage (some even went to the point of disobeying orders of the military), it is just inappropriate to go about arresting any random reporter or crew just because our government is paranoid that they could be carrying guns or helping out the personalities involved. Do these people even have a clue how the press operates?! It’s their FREAKING JOB to cover the stand-off! You cannot blame them for being in the middle of the action because THAT’S WHAT THEY’RE HERE FOR, YOU FOOLS!

This is, as many have said, a clear violation of the Freedom of the Press. Provided there was no direct attack on the media, this incident clearly sends a chilling effect and serves as a warning shot for media people who would cover future events such as these. They would begin to ask themselves now if they’re crossing any boundaries even if they’re not. The paranoia has been planted.

I won’t begin talking about the stand-off today because I’m just so freaking frustrated. Not just with the government, but with Trillanes’ camp as well. They shouldn’t have made bold proclamations they couldn’t stand for ’til the end. ‘Nuff said.

[UPDATED to ADD] The curfew isn’t and can never be justified. What is this, an onslaught of Martial Law?! No matter how the government tries to sugarcoat the imposition of a curfew as a means of protecting the public, it will always be interpreted as a means to impose authoritarian rule. What next? Yet another Proclamation? PP1017 and the February 2005 Fort Bonifacio stand-off easily comes to mind. Let’s see what hideous measure this government will come up next.

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The whole country is abuzz with news lately, especially that of the recent bombing at the House of Representatives. Again, lives have been claimed and national security has been threatened. The culprits have yet to be identified and the motive behind the bombing remains to be seen.

What’s quite ironic is that we haven’t much recovered from the recent tragedy that has befallen us and yet here’s another one that we didn’t see coming. Of all places, how come the House of Representatives became the target of such a terroristic act? Suddenly nobody feels so safe anywhere, anymore. (more…)

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