November 30, 2009

Thought for the day... (2nd update)

IF you look like a slut, and behave like a slut, you'll be treated like a slut.

Bato, bato sa langit...

* * * *

Of course I wrote the above in reference to someone else, but whaddya know? Here's one who's sold her soul to the devil: GMA to run for Congress.

(What she really is. Photo from the Manila Baywatch.)

I really hope someone files his/her own candidacy in the same district to fight this evil incarnate, and defeats her. She needs to be told she isn't wanted anywhere. I don't think Capampangans are suckers for pain to intentionally want this gloria madness inflicted on themselves. (A word from the Warrior Lawyer why UP professor Randy David backed out from his earlier planned candidacy vs. GMA.)

Wow, I actually thought she couldn't top herself, but this really takes the cake! She is sooooo in love with herself and so greedy she intends to perpetuate herself in power. Di na nahiya sa kapal ng balat at mukha. Nakakadiri!

Well it's up to the Capampangans now. I hope they wake up to the reality that GMA is no good for this country nor for their province.

Merry Christmas!

* * * *

(UPDATE 12/01/09, 3:16 pm) And in case you haven't heard, here's another one with the gall to run for public office after stealing taxpayers' money! Like master, like tuta.

When it's time to walk away

If all there is in the relationship are unfulfilled promises, unmet expectations and acrimony, perhaps it’s time to call it quits. The presumption is that both of you are all talked-out, and the solutions undertaken to save the relationship have not achieved anything significant. When staying in the relationship makes you feel like you’re paddling furiously so as not be drowned in an abyss of emptiness, it’s probably time to swim back to dry land. (Click here for the rest. Photo from Beauteous.)

November 28, 2009

Noynoy and MAR file COCs at Comelec

“There are four that we would like to focus on: job generation is first. This is best explained by a father that I talked with before who said, ‘Bigyan niyo kami ng trabaho at kami na ang bahala sa kalusugan [Give us jobs and we will take care of health]’; education is second which is an essential tool for job creation, to start the reform of the justice system and even to advocate concern for the environment; third is health and fourth is judicial reform,” said Aquino. (Click here for the rest.)

Liberal Party standard-bearers Senators Benigno Simeon "Noynoy" Aquino III and MAR Roxas flash the Laban sign as they hold their certificates of candidacy filed before the Commisssion on Elections this morning. Aquino and Roxas pledged to continue to heed the collective thirst and hunger of people for change, and to fight the crooked and corrupt. "Sa harap po ninyong lahat, sa harap po ng sambayanang Pilipino, hinding-hindi po namin bibiguin ang tiwala na ipinagkaloob po ninyo sa amin. Sama-sama tayo, lalaban po tayo. Una kayo, bago ako. Una ang bayan, bago ang sarili," Roxas said. (Photos by Gil Nartea, courtesy of the office of Sen, MAR Roxas.)

Aquino and Roxas, together with senatorial candidates under the "People's Reform" coalition, bow their heads in a minute of silence to remember the victims of the Maguindanao massacre before filing their COCs before the Comelec. Aquino, Roxas and the LP slate condemn the murders in the strongest possible terms, and pledges to work for the redemption of democracy and lasting peace in the Philippines, especially in Mindanao. From left: Batangas Gov. Vilma Santos-Recto, Ryan Christian Recto, former Sen. Ralph Recto, Muntinlupa Rep. Ruffy Biazon and former Senate President Frank Drilon; Aquino and Roxas; Manila Mayor Fred Lim; senatorial candidates Akbayan! Rep. Riza Hontiveros and Bukidnon Rep. TG Guingona; Aika Lim (daughter of senatorial candidate Brig. Gen. Danny Lim) and Pia Lacson (wife of senatorial candidate Alex Lacson).

Aquino and Roxas, together with LP senatorial candidates pledge to supporters to continue the the communal fight of all for what is right ("laban na tapat, laban ng lahat").

November 27, 2009

Because I hate ending the week on a down note...

I just wanted to post this video of a former drug user whose life was touched by Efren Peñaflorida, CNN Hero of 2009.

I believe in my heart that for every Andal Ampatuan Jr., there are 10 of more Efren Penãfloridas amongst us, just selflessly trying to serve others. Be the change.

More on the Ampatuan clan of Maguindanao (updated)

(The presidentita, ARMM Gov. Zaldy Ampatuan and his father Maguindanao Gov. Andal Ampatuan Sr., Sen. Miguel Zubiri, and Basilan Gov. Jum Akbar, in prayer at an RDCC meeting in July 2008. Photo from RMN Mindanao.)

In its 2007 Elections Forensics Report, the Center for People Empowerment in Governance (CenPEG) noted: “The Ampatuan dynasty based in Maguindanao province is Arroyo’s present conduit in helping ensure her influence over the whole of Mindanao, which hosts many of the country’s grizzled but otherwise powerful political clans.” (Read the 2008 report of PCIJ.)

* * * *

(Datu Unsay town mayor Andal Ampatuan Jr., center, with Secretary Jesus Dureza, right, upon landing at the General Santos City airport. Notice, the suspect isn't handcuffed. Just part of the administration's kid-gloves treatment. Photo and story in the Inquirer.)

November 25, 2009

Reality bites (Updated 11:47 pm, 11/26/09)

LIKE many of my colleagues in media, I too condemn in the strongest possible terms the hostage-taking and senseless killings that took place in Maguindanao earlier this week. There is no reason to involve women and innocent civilians such as journalists in violent schemes to settle political differences. As of the latest count, there were 47 dead, and yet no arrests have been made! All the government has done is declare a state of emergency. WTF?!?!

Let me tell you that back in the late 1980’s when I had the opportunity to work in the government, there was no fear of traveling to the far reaches of Mindanao. The places we usually read about now that lay host to these political killings or terrorist activities by Muslim extremists were places I used to travel with my bosses and fellow journalists. We would criss-cross Mindanao by land, with hardly a trail of military escorts because it was peaceful then.

Mindanao is a beautiful resource-rich region where most residents are men and women who once peacefully co-existed with others despite their dissimilar political, religious and cultural backgrounds. May the next president of this country be able to solve the peace and order issues in Mindanao so its people can return to their normal lives and prosper in peace.

The statements of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines here (courtesy of Nonoy Espina), and the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) here.

* * * *

From an eyewitness: "Datu Andal himself said, he said to us: 'anyone from the Mangudadatu clan - women or children - should be killed...' We don't ask why, we just followed orders." (Read the rest in Al Jazeera.)

Ampatuan's denial here.

RSF to the presidentita: 'Choose better political allies'

* * * *

LIST of journalists who were killed in Ampatuan, Maguinadano, as per GMA News. Pls. say a prayer for the eternal repose of their souls.

1. Ian Subang, Socsargen Today, General Santos City
2. Lea Dalmacio, Socsargen News, General Santos City
3. Gina De la Cruz, Saksi News, General Santos City
4. Maritess Cablitas, News Focus, General Santos City
5. Rosell Morales, News Focus, General Santos City
6. Henry Araneta, Radio DZRH, General Santos City
7. Neneng Montaño, Saksi News, General Santos City
8. Alejandro “Bong" Reblando, Manila Bulletin, General Santos City
9. Victor Nuñez, UNTV (senior correspondent), General Santos City
10. Mark Gilbert “Mac-Mac" Arriola, UNTV (cameraman), General Santos City
11. Bal Cachuela, Punto News, Koronadal City
12. Ernesto “Bart" Maravilla, Bombo Radyo, Koronadal City
13. Ronie Perante, Gold Star Daily correspondent, Koronadal City
14. Joel Parcon, Prontiera News, Koronadal City
15. Jun Legarte, Prontiera News, Koronadal City
16. Rey Merisco, Periodico Ini, Koronadal City
17. John Caniban, Periodico Ini, Koronadal City
18. Arturo Betia, Periodico Ini, Koronadal City
19. Noel Decena, Periodico Ini, Koronadal City
20. Rani Razon, Periodico Ini, Koronadal City
21. Jhoy Duhay, Gold Star Daily, Tacurong City
22. Andy Teodoro, Central Mindanao Inquirer, Tacurong City
23. Jimmy Cabilo, Midland Review, Tacurong City
24. (missing) Reynaldo “Bebot" Momay, Midland Review, Tacurong City
25. Napoleon Salaysay, Mindanao Gazette, Cotabato City
26. Jun Gatchalian, Davao City
27. Lindo Lupogan, News Media Gazette, Davao City
28. Jolito Evardo, UNTV (driver), General Santos City
29. Daniel Tiamzon, UNTV (asst. cameraman and editor), General Santos City

November 23, 2009

Oh my goodness! Cookies!

(Don't these look scrumptious? Honey choco P's from My Goodness.)

MY vegetarian friend Shai Tamayo is offering healthy options for your Christmas gift-giving. She and her family make cookies made of nutritious, and virtually fat-free, ingredients like whole wheat flour, oats, low-fat yogurt, organic muscovado sugar, nuts and fruits, etc.

While I have yet to taste her treats, I just think these make great gifts to our friends and loved ones who are on strict diets to control their caloric intake, their blood pressure, and other diet-related illnesses. I, for one, usually have difficulty thinking of what to give my diet-restricted close friends afflicted with hypertension and diabetes. So next time I visit the Salcedo Market, I will surely drop by Shai's stall, My Goodness.

Below is Shai's latest announcement on Christmas gift boxes.

To know more of Shai's healthy treats, please visit My Goodness. She also sells organic rice, and organic coco sugar, etc., w/c you can buy in those beautifully crafted boxes from Laguna.

Bravo Efren Peñaflorida!

(Photo from AC360 on CNN. Read a recap of Efren's story here)
"Our planet is filled with heroes, young and old, rich and poor, man, woman of different colors, shapes and sizes. We are one great tapestry," - Efren Peñaflorida, CNN Hero of the year

As Efren has shown, truly, one man CAN make a difference. What great news to start a new week, huh! :)

November 20, 2009

Pacman is home!

Looks like Manny and Jinkee have kissed and made up huh? Pero say nyo sa outfit ni Nanay Dionisia?! hahaha. She's so aliw!

November 18, 2009

Meanwhile, back in Lala-land...

MANILA, Philippines - Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairman Bayani Fernando yesterday declared he would resign to pursue his bid for the presidency in the 2010 elections.

“There is no turning back. Definitely I’m resigning soon,” he said. (Click BF to pursue presidential bid.)

* * * *

MANILA, Philippines - Filipino boxing great Manny Pacquiao is bracing for two big battles in 2010 — a congressional bid and a possible fight against former pound-for-pound champ American boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Pacquiao told ABS-CBN’s “Umagang Kay Ganda” yesterday that he is bent on running for a seat in Congress in 2010. “Tuloy iyong pagtakbo ko next year (My plan to run in the elections next year is on),” Pacquiao said. (Click What's next for the Pacman?)

* * * *

(Photos from the Phil. Star)

MANILA, Philippines — Gina Alajar on Tuesday spoke about the controversy stirred up by a comment on her Facebook account on the alleged romance between Manny Pacquiao and Krista Ranillo.

The actress-filmmaker rued the implication that she confirmed the affair. What she wrote: “If I am Jinkee Pacquiao, I will not give up Manny... Krista... is not at all worth it!” (Click I stand by my post.)

Wake up, wake up! Wash your face! And make a bumble shake!

November 17, 2009

Loren: I am casting my lot with Manny Villar...


A. I like the color orange;
B. No one wanted me to be their VP;
C. He was the only one who could afford my P500-million acceptance fee;
D. All of the above.

* * * *

Loren: "Mas magandang kumbinasyon ang green at orange." The good senator probably flunked art class in Assumption, otherwise she would have known that combining both colors results in a muddy brown. As in, putik! Eew!

And no offense to my Assumptionista friends, but everyone knows that those who can afford to send their kids to this private Catholic school for girls certainly didn't come from humble beginnings. Meaning, you are not poor. So Loren should just stop saying that she and Villar come from similar backgrounds. Sige ka, I will make tusok-tusok you!

(Photos from the Filipino News Network.)

* * * *

The best Loren Legarda (aka Angelina Jolie) story I heard was told to me years ago by a member of her production staff when she was about to quit her job as TV presenter. She was ending her TV show on this major network to run for the Senate for the first time. At the production meeting to discuss what they would do for the last episode, Loren told her staff: "Maybe you should give me a goodbye party."

The staff, already used to her quirks, still couldn't believe their ears. They all managed to keep a straight face and eventually complied w/ Loren's instruction. So for the last show, they whipped up balloons and a cake for her. She, of course, acted all surprised. I actually saw this episode.

Many of those who've worked w/ Loren during her TV stint try not have anything to do w/ her these days, and I can understand why.

* * * *

On Feb. 28, 2009, Manny Villar said:

"I believe that while a lot of us will be announcing our candidacies, in the end there will just be a few who will remain.... If you can't even raise one billion pesos, why even run?

"With me, what you see is what you get. With some candidates, you'll have to ask, who's behind you? They say there is one golden rule, he who has the gold rules." (Click Reuters for the rest.)

To which, Loren replied on March 4, 2009:

"Ibig ba n'yang sabihin, kung wala kang pera ay huwag ka ng mangarap na makapaglingkod bilang pangulo sa ating bansa? Nakalulungkot pong isipin na paliliitin natin ang usapin ng paglilingkod sa bayan sa isyu ng pera. Pera-pera na lang ba ang eleksyon? Talaga bang ang tingin nya sa taong bayan ay mukhang pera? Pwera na ba ang pagmamahal sa bayan? Pwera na ba yung uri ng leadership na ibibigay mo? Pwera na ba yung vision para sa kinabukasan ng ating bansa? Basta may pera pwera na ba ang lahat?" (Click Loren statement for the rest.)

Sino daw ang mukhang pera?

* * * *

One year ago to this day, Loren voted to oust Villar as Senate president.

Then yesterday, this is what she said: "Ang mga nangyayari sa Senado at sa demokrasya ay parte ng mga proseso na walang pinagsisisihan, at ginagawa at nangyayari na walang personalan."

Her entire proclamation speech here.

* * * *

In Sept. 2008, Loren Legarda said this: Probe Villar on road project.

And today, this is what she said: "We share the same commitment to good governance marked by transparency and accountability." Of course, this comes a day after she signed a Senate resolution acquitting him of the ethics complaint in the C-5 double insertion case.

Pasok Jamboy: I will not subscribe to political prostitution when the country's interest is at stake.

Potah! Who is she calling a prostitute?

November 14, 2009

Things I learned from Sesame Street: (UPDATED)

• "C" is for cookie, that's good enough for me.
• Tweedlebugs live among plants and will take their car to the zoo.
• Brrrring! is the sound that aliens make when they come to visit your home.
• Two males can live together and that's okay.
• The world is composed of white Americans, black Americans, Mexicans, Chinese, monsters who live in garbage cans or eat cookies all day, green frogs who sing, birds as big as a house who may have imaginary (or not) elephantine friends.
• It was always sunny on Sesame Street, except when the Count finishes counting and then there would be thunder and lightning.
• It was normal for celebrities to hang out with monsters and muppets.
• We will all die eventually, as Mr. Hooper did.
• It's okay to sing at the top of my voice, when I'm happy, or rant and rave when I'm mad or grouchy.
• That it's great to run with the sun and wind in my face. Preferably with balloons.

Happy 40th anniversary Sesame Street!

(One of my favorite episodes on Monsterpiece Theater.)

* * * *

I've never seen this episode before but apparently, Mr. Snuffalapagus was finally met by the adults on Sesame Street in 1985. Accdg. to the YouTube poster, the writers of the show felt that it was not a good message to tell children that adults would never believe them.

Well, I always thought Snuffy existed in Big Bird's imagination and it was okay that the adults didn't see him. That's what made Snuffy special. Now he's just an ordinary muppet like the rest, only bigger.

November 13, 2009

If Edu has the Papaya Dance...

...GMA has the Poker Face dance!

How to cure (political) constipation (UPDATED)

I LOVE Edu Manzano. There I said it. "Love" not in a thumpity-thump heart-beat kind of way, but "love" as in I really admire his talents.

He was an excellent actor, even better than most Pinoys' favorite, Boyet de Leon, who I think tends to be OA. Edu's terrific sense of humor, intelligence, and articulacy in both the English and Filipino languages (not to mention the Ilonggo dialect) make him a natural host whether it be for a game show, a talk show, or a variety show. And apparently, he's even a good dancer! with his Papaya Dance capturing even the imagination of Good Morning America anchors in the U.S. You name it, he has the chops. Edu is one of best entertainers in the country and gives some amount of class to an industry peppered with the likes of Wowowillie.

But will he make a good vice president for the Philippines?

Edu was vice mayor of Makati in 1998 and almost didn't get to assume the position because his opponents claimed he was not a Filipino citizen. For those who don't know, Edu was born in San Francisco in Sept. 1955. But the Comelec ruled on Sept. 1998, that he was indeed Filipino by virtue of having registered as a Filipino voter. The case was elevated to the Supreme Court but the justices likewise ruled in Edu's favor.

His term of office was largely unremarkable I don't remember any earthshaking accomplishments. But I suppose he was largely sidelined from doing much more than he could bec. it was really Jojo Binay who was running the show, being the mayor.

Edu took a shot at the mayoralty position in 2001, fighting the massive machinery and experience of Binay and lost. He ran on an anti-corruption platform backed by the Forbes Park crowd, but it's been alleged that he knew he was not going to emerge victorious in that race. But as everyone joked then, at least he ended up fiscally fit. Hmmph! Bad talaga kayo.

After losing that election, Edu went back to showbusiness until he was appointed as the very first chairman of the Optical Media Board in 2004, after the Optical Media Act was signed into law in 2003. The OMB, whose forerunner was the Videogram Regulatory Board, is supposed to spearhead the fight against film piracy.

I don't know about you guys, but it seems to me there are more pirated discs flooding the market even before this particular law was enacted. Sure there have been few high-profile raids vs small retailers of pirated discs w/c we see reported intermittently on TV and the newspapers, but the problem continues. And it's been what? five years since the OMB has been operating? Tsk, tsk. Again there are many rumors floating around why film piracy continues and why Edu has largely been unsuccessful in eliminating it, some of w/c are not fit to publish here. Interestingly enough, Edu blames the rampant film piracy on Muslim extremists in the South.

Then between hosting jobs and his OMB stint, he founded the Ako Mismo organization w/c was eyed w/ much suspicion, for not immediately identifying the proponents behind it and what the movement was all about. The movement was foisted on the public via TV ad w/c featured a number of celebrities and thought to be the vehicle to push the presidential candidacy of businessman Manny Pangilinan. Edu finally went on ANC explaining that the organization was advocating for change by encouraging Filipinos to stand up for themselves and not depend on anyone else but themselves to institute reforms.

While he has said that the movement is non-political, w/ his run for VP, I doubt if it will remain as such. In fact, as I wrote then, I thought the Ako Mismo campaign seemed suspiciously like a pro-administration movement bec. after all, Edu is a GMA appointee. Well, well, well...I told you so.

The many loves of Edu: (clockwise from top left) Vilma Santos, Maricel Soriano, Rina Samson and Pinky Webb. Photos from PEP, Photobucket, and Facebook.

On the personal side, Edu's lovelife has always been super interesting! He was once married to Gov. Ate Vi (who has sensibly decided to continue taking care of Batangas) and they have a son Luis (aka Lucky), also an actor. He then moved on to Maricel Soriano who I hear has just broken up w/ her most recent significant other. Then made the bed w/ Rina Samson - a former ground stewardess w/ Cathay Pacific - and w/ whom he has two children, Amanda Danielle and Lorenzo. Now he is said to be engaged to ANC news anchor Pinky Webb. Ang colorful di ba?!?! (Hmm...I wonder if ABS-CBN will ask Pinky to go on leave as well, the way management did w/ Ate Koring. And naku! are we in for another 'wedding of the year' ala MAR-Koring?)

(UPDATE 11/19/09: Accdg to the news today, Edu has confirmed that he and Pinky have split up. Not surprising. He was kinda uneasy when he answered Tina Monzon-Palma's question two days ago on whether Pinky knew about his VP plan. He said, she was surprised, and added, "We haven't spoken for a while." Ay grabeh. So no wedding of the year in 2010. Oh well.)

To answer my own question, while I respect Edu and his talents, he has yet to prove himself in the area of public service. It's pretty obvious why he was chosen by the ruling PaLaKa party to be Sec. Gilbert Teodoro's running mate in the 2010 elections. They are running scared and are desperate to shore up Gibo's popularity w/c has been lingering in the single-digit percentages. And after turning on their asses for weeks who could do the job, they finally "force out Edu, the Papaya King, to cure the party's political constipation!" as a Facebook friend puts it. Haha.

Does the PaLaKa stand a better chance now that it has Edu as its VP? No. I think Pinoy voters will decidedly remain anti-Gloria and will always associate the Gibo-Edu tandem w/ her. Both will still represent the corrupt practices that this administration continues to engage in and the blatant dishonesty that has marked her presidency. The party will not be able detach their team from what she represents, yes, even if she steps down from its chairmanship. That's how much damage the presidentita has done to the country, to the bureaucracy, and to her party.

I conclude w/ a quote from Edu himself from this noon's press briefing: (To Gibo, after the latter introduces Edu's background and advocacies in rather glowing terms): "Not even my mother has spoken highly of me!" Ayus.

November 10, 2009

Noynoy gets Internet savvy w/ a little help from his Campaigns friends (w/ update)

LIBERAL Party presidential candidate Sen. Noynoy Aquino is quite a stranger to the ways of the Internet. Prior to his run for president, I don't think he even had his own web site aside from his page attached on the Senate's own web site. He has only started tweeting, and my guess is it's his new media group tweeting for him and not himself. I have yet to check which of the Noynoy Aquino/Benigno Aquino III Facebook profiles is his real one, although there is an official fan page whose membership just recently cracked the 100,000-mark.

(Sen. Aquino's official Facebook fan page, although I counted two other fan pages, plus three profiles w/c includes the one w/c lists him as a female and w/ his mother's bday.)

With Campaigns and Grey's Yoly Ong now on his side, the Senator's presence on the Net has further expanded with the airing of his 60-second video blogs (VLogs) w/c started today. In a press briefing w/c I attended this morning along w/ other select members of the media, Ong and Melissa Limcaoco, Sen. Aquino's deputy director for new media, said the purpose of these VLogs is to let the public get a taste of the issues the presidentiable is fighting for (or against). A videographer has been going around covering each campaign sortie of Sen. Aquino, capturing his speeches and his interaction w/ the public. In his first VLog, for instance, he is shown speaking w/ a retired public school teacher who complained of not being able to receive her monthly pension from the GSIS because the agency had no money.

The VLogs (dubbed "60 secs. w/ Noy") are definitely a step in the right direction for the Aquino campaign after reaping a whirlwind of criticism mainly from the intelligentsia, who detested the MTV featuring Sen. Aquino and his band of artistas. (Of course, they probably don't like Pinoy celebrities to begin with, and the empty-headedness they are thought to represent.) Lighten up people! He needs to attract the masa vote, obvious ba? Although I do agree w/ the critics that we need to see/read/hear more of Sen. Aquino and his platform of govt. instead of just seeing w/c artista endorsed him. So I suppose these VLogs will help the campaign achieve the purpose.

The VLogs are unscripted and meant to show the real Noynoy Aquino "in the raw." At the end of each day, the videographer's footages will be tightly edited and strung together to form a theme for each VLog, before being aired. (OK, so technically, the VLogs won't really be quote-unquote, raw.) The footages will be punched up w/ his official campaign jingle, Sya na Nga, w/c I must admit is a really catchy tune, I still hear it playing in my head. LSS much?

The VLogs will run daily until Nov. 27, or the day before Sen. Aquino files his official certificate of candidacy at the Comelec. Under the Omnibus Election Code, the campaign period starts on Feb. 9, 2010 for national candidates (or 90 days before May 8 elections), and March 26, 2010 for local candidates (or 45 days before May 8), so the candidates are not supposed to air any TV or radio ads about themselves from the time they file their COCs until the beginning of their respective campaign periods. It isn't clear though if this covers the new Internet platforms, after all, this medium was hardly tapped in previous elections. Like last year's U.S. presidential elections, this will be the first time in Philippine electoral history that new media will be used by the presidential candidates (via their web sites, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Friendster, cellphones, etc.). Ong says the Aquino campaign is erring on the side of caution and until further ruling by the Comelec, will cease airing the VLogs once Sen. Aquino files his COC.

(Sen. Aquino's official web site.)

Of course the inevitable question is, will campaigning through the Internet/new media make a difference for any of the candidates? By and large, Internet penetration in the Philippines is still low; accdg to Internet World Stats, it is 24 million as of the 2nd qtr of 2009, or roughly 25% of the country's estimated population of 97.98 million. About 18.2 million of Internet users are potential voters (meaning 18 y.o. and up). So while the Aquino campaign will be tapping this new media for its campaign, Ong says, it is really an experiment for them to see how much power the Internet has in moving next year's elections. And TV is still the medium w/ the largest impact w/ 90% usage for voters' info as compared to only 22% for the Internet. Ong does point out though that Sen. Loren Legarda won in the last senatorial election w/ an 18-million vote, so that just means they are hoping the Internet will boost Sen. Aquino's chances to win in 2010. (Btw, did you know that 60% of Internet users in the Phils. are in Internet cafés?)

As of press time, however, Ong has yet to answer my question if there are any plans for Sen. Aquino's team mate and VP candidate Sen. MAR Roxas to be included in the Internet campaigns. (After previewing the first three VLogs, it looks like Sen. Aquino's running mate is actually former Bukidnon Rep. Neric Acosta, and not Roxas. Acosta is just all over the place!) For casual political observers like me, Sen. Aquino seems to be conducting his own separate campaign, pretty much disengaged from what should really be a team effort. Are Sen. Aquino's handlers trying to get him elected at all cost, w/o a care who wins the VP slot? Hmmm...again,nagtatanong lang po.

(A slide from today's presentation by Campaigns and Grey. Looks like Sen. Aquino has trumped some of his rivals in terms of Internet presence/followers. What will this mean for the 2010 elections?)

(UPDATE 1:05 a.m.) Accdg. to Campaigns PR Inc. Managing Director Richard Arboleda, Sen. MAR Roxas will definitely figure in the Sen. Aquino's future VLogs. Thanks!

November 09, 2009

Getting into the Christmas spirit

It may be a stretch for some to feel all toasty and charitable in the coming holidays, especially those who may have lost loved ones and their homes in the last typhoons. But as a friend pointed out, it is up to us, those who were not directly touched by the calamities, to help the victims get into the Christmas spirit. (Click Something Like Life for the rest.)

November 07, 2009

National Geographic on the Phils.

The Philippines has a PR problem. While it harbors as many islands as the Caribbean and some of the most spectacular reefs on the planet, the nation sees only a fraction of the visitors of nearby Thailand. Even travel companies, it seems, have bought the bad rap: Other than the occasional sea kayaking trip, U.S. guides have largely avoided the archipelago. But Wilderness Travel has finally gotten wise. (Read the rest at The 25 Best New Trips for 2010.)

Check out Wilderness Travel's scheduled trips to the Philippines here, if you're interested in experiencing great unexpected adventures.

November 04, 2009

Pacman on Jimmy Kimmel Live

I'm so happy to listen to Manny Pacquiao speak in English. He has improved a lot! Good job, whoever his teacher is. And wasn't Jimmy Kimmel so generous and considerate in helping him out in the interview, esp. in portions where the Pacman seemed to falter in his answers? Nice.

But this is the best part of the show, as far as the Pinoys in the audience were concerned.

Woo-hoo! Knock out ka na Cotto, kanta pa lang 'yan. hahaha.

Pinoy mural in France

I JUST read today that Filipino artist Manuel Baldemor has finally completed his mural for the Basilica of St. Therese (of the Child Jesus) in Lisieux, France w/c was done in collaboration w/ French mosaic artists. He told us about this commissioned work when we met him sometime last Feb., while the girls and I were having coffee. (I had initially thought it was for the convent.)

The artwork was unveiled last Oct. 18 according to the Phil. Star. It depicts the People Power revolution of 1986 with the Virgin Mary in the center of the artwork, a burst of sunrays at the back of her head figuring prominently like the sun in the Philippine flag, while St. Therese is in the right corner admiring the crowds at the virgin's feet. Congratulations Mang Manny!

(Mang Manny with French mosaic artist Sylvie Henot. Photo from Phil. Star.)

Btw, I found an old writeup how the mural came to be. Read it here.

(The mural up close.)

Proudly Pinoy.

November 03, 2009


Pak dis shet: Arroyo can run for VP. Stop giving her ideas guys!

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Sen. Manny Villar at the MOPC Presidential Series, Oct. 29: “I’m not perfect. I have a lot of failures in life, I have experienced difficulties. But when you look at me, you are looking at Manny Villar, what you see is what you get. You’re not looking at my mother, my father or the tycoon behind me. You are looking at Manny Villar.”

When I look at Manny Villar, I see his wife Cynthia and her family's fortune, without which would not have made his success possible.

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Dubbed a "labor of love," producers and celebrities in this video promoting Sen. Noynoy Aquino's presidential candidacy volunteered their services, most of them friends of Kris Aquino and Boy Abunda. The star power behind Noynoy is indeed dazzling, with members of the rival Kapamilya and Kapuso networks coming together for the production.

Expectedly there have been various reactions from the public about it. Some love the song, like I do, because I find it very moving, a testament to composer Ogie Alcasid's talent in capturing the spirit of Noynoy's supporters. Others find it detestable (they cringe esp. at the part where Abunda arrives in a banca) and disturbing that the presidentiable would agree to do something that the usual trapos would do, i.e. prematurely campaigning before he's even filed his certificate of candidacy, and asking celebrities to endorse him.

My only question is, isn't Noynoy forgetting something? Like his VP running mate Sen. MAR Roxas for example? Isn't this supposed to be a Noynoy-Mar 2010 campaign? Hmmm...just asking.

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Last Saturday's typhoon was locally named "Santi". The current tropical depression is named "Tino". The names of these weather disturbances should dispel whatever doubts that PAGASA meteorologists aren't fans of May Bukas Pa. Gads.

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BTW, like many Metro Manilans, I went out of town w/ my family for the Halloween break. We left Quezon City on Friday, Oct. 30, at about 9:30 pm and drove to Subic via NLEX/SCTEX. It's astonishing that with the amount of toll paid everday by motorists on both these highways, there are long stretches that are still unlighted. These pose dangers to the numerous drivers and their passengers travelling there daily. I wish the govt agencies overseeing these expressways would attend to the matter of adequately lighting them ASAP.