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noynoy aquino’s 2010 SONA speech – chopsuey that was put together

July 29, 2010 2 comments

reading aquino’s SONA speech, i get the feeling it was put together into one from at least 4 different speeches. there really was no well defined direction, just bits and pieces of thoughts that could have been delivered separately but just put together by adding a paragraph or two just so it sounds connected as a whole.

it also felt like it went through a major rewrite somewhere very close to the actual delivery time. it felt like someone changed his mind about the content and decided on the last minute to remove large chunks of the speech.

there were a lot of reactions to the speech when aquino gave a “preview” to it sying it’s contents will “shock and awe” the nation with its newly found corruption in government.  we think when they got strong reactions against the :shock and awe” portion, they decided to remove large portions of the speech to tone it down.

it is a speech lacking in inspiration and rhetoric. perhaps it is aquino’s style to be just direct, factual and boring but this is his first SONA, i was expecting he will go for the historic with words and thoughts that takes flight and for us to pluck them down and remember them for always.

it did not help him that he was not very good at using the teleprompter. he was obviously reading the speech off it, almost word for word. And he was a bad reader with some of the words mis-pronounced and read incorrectly. i think he gets lost when he needs to go to the next paragraph.

we were not particularly impressed with the speech and that is next in this blog.

noynoy aquino 2010 SONA speech transcript – official english translation

July 27, 2010 30 comments

State of the Nation Address
of His Excellency Benigno S. Aquino III
President of the Philippines to the Congress of the Philippines
Session Hall of the House of Representatives
July 26, 2010
[Batasan Pambansa Complex, Quezon City]


(ENGLISH TRANSLATION PROVIDED BY NOYNOY MEDIA BUREAU)

Speaker Feliciano Belmonte; Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile; Vice President Jejomar Binay, Chief Justice Renato Corona, Former Presidents Fidel Valdez Ramos and Joseph Ejercito Estrada; Members of the House of Representatives and the Senate; distinguished members of the diplomatic corps;

My beloved countrymen:

Our administration is facing a forked road. On one direction, decisions are made to protect the welfare of our people; to look after the interest of the majority; to have a firm grip on principles; and to be faithful to the public servant’s sworn oath to serve the country honestly.
This is the straight path.

On the other side, personal interest is the priority, and where one becomes a slave to political considerations to the detriment of our nation.

This is the crooked path.

For a long time, our country lost its way in the crooked path. As days go by (since I became President), the massive scope of the problems we have inherited becomes much clearer. I could almost feel the weight of my responsibilities.

In the first three weeks of our administration, we discovered many things, and I will report to you some of the problems we have uncovered, and the steps we are taking to solve them.
This report is merely a glimpse of our situation. It is not the entire picture of the crises we are facing. The reality was hidden from our people, who seem to have been deliberately obfuscated on the real state of our nation.

In the first six years of this year, government expenditure exceeded our revenues. Our deficit further increased to PhP196.7 billion. Our collection targets, which lack PhP23.8 billion, were not fully met, while we went beyond our spending by PhP45.1 billion.

Our budget for 2010 is PhP1.54 trillion. Of this, only PhP100 billion – or 6.5% of the total budget – can be used for the remaining six months of the current year. Roughly 1% of the total budget is left for each of the remaining month.

Where did the funds go?

A calamity fund worth PhP2 billion was reserved in preparation for anticipated calamities. Of this already miniscule amount, at a time when the rainy season has yet to set in, PhP1.4 billion or 70% was already spent.

The entire province of Pampanga received PhP108 million. Of this, PhP105 million went to only one district. On the other hand, the province of Pangasinan, which was severely affected by Typhoon Pepeng, received a mere PhP5 million, which had to be used to fix damages inflicted not even by Pepeng, but by a previous typhoon, Cosme.

The funds were released on election month, which was seven months after the typhoon. What will happen if a typhoon arrives tomorrow? The fund has been used up to repair damage from typhoons that hit us last year. Our future will pay for the greed of yesterday.

This is also what happened to the funds of the MWSS. Just recently, people lined up for water while the leadership of the MWSS rewarded itself even though the pensions of retired employees remain unpaid.

The entire payroll of the MWSS amounts to 51.4 million pesos annually. But this isn’t the full extent of what they receive: they receive additional allowances and benefits amounting to 81.1 million pesos. In short, they receive 211.5 million pesos annually. Twenty four percent of this is for normal salaries, and sixty six percent is added on.

The average worker receives up to 13th month pay plus a cash gift. In the MWSS, they receive the equivalent of over thirty months pay if you include all their additional bonuses and allowances.

What we discovered in the case of the salaries of their board of trustees is even more shocking. Let’s take a look at the allowances they receive:

Read more…

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