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change has arrived – PDI uses the word “fuck” on its front page, a first in PHL journalism

June 3, 2016 Leave a comment

today, June 3, 2016 is a news day in the philippines. you may not feel it yet but you can certainly read it off at today’s issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

for the first time in this country’s history and history of Philippine journalism, a national newspaper has used the word “fuck” on the title of an article on its front page. no bleeps, no asterisks but good old, plain “fuck” in all it’s four letter glory.

not only was it used on the front page, it was used on the second lead article in the newspaper, right below the lead article for the day.

beyond the initial shock or glee from reading the word on the newspaper, we think there is a deeper reason for its use.

we are describing it as poetic. in simple terms, it can be described as PDI is making a point here.

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first the poetry in today’s PDI issue – look at the whole front page. top of the page is a big photo of outgoing president Noynoy Aquino beside the losing LP presidential candidate and Aquino’s cabinet members having wholesome fun on the videoke.

from that giant wholesome picture, right below it is the headline: “Seek to understand Duterte, aides urge” accompanied by a photo of Duterte here he seems to be smirking and close to looking arrogant and below it the magic word “fuck” in the article “Don’t fuck with me, he tells media”. then on the far left is the article explaining the wholesome picture on top of the newspaper “P’noy. Mar lead LP in singing blues away”

next, we think all that was intentional. it was designed and laid out that way with exact purpose. these are the messages :

  • draw  contrast between the outgoing and incoming presidents of the country
  • the outgoing president ad administration is all about fun and wholesome
  • the incoming president and administration of Duterte is all about “fucking” (“we are all fucked”?)
  • if not that, well at least the incoming president Duterte is not wholesome
  • the big irony of it all is that as the headline says, we are supposed to “understand” the incoming president

the contrast that PDI painted is clear, done in words and pictures that we all understand even if we didn’t think about it too much. it is obvious and plain to see.

but none of this is PDI’s fault – they are just giving it to us in words and pictures the thoughts that we have been suspecting specially in the past few days if not thoughts we have known all along and all that based on actual words and actions by Rody Duterte.

PDI’s front page just might be the signs of the times. and the sign starts with the word “fuck”.

supporters abandon Jejomar Binay in mass exodus

October 2, 2015 Leave a comment

there is no other way to describe what has been happening to presidentiable Jejomar Binay and his presidential campaign – his supporters are abandoning him in what can only be called a mass exodus. this is the PDI headline from the most recent survey from Pulse Asia:

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this is a survey from Pulse Asia on the performance and trust rating of Binay as vice-president. this survey asks the performance and trust ratings of the top officials in the government from the president to the speaker of the house and senate to the chief justice. this is different from the election surveys that Pulse Asia (and SWS) have been conducting.

this survey asks respondents of their sentiments in the way Binay is performing his job as vice-president. people will be responding to that question based on what they think a vice president should be doing. Binay’s run for the president is not mentioned in the question that is being asked here.

the results were devastating for Binay – he took a free fall on trust and performance to his lowest level in the process losing a whopping-15% points from 58% to 43% of his approval rating on his performance of his job.

equally devastating is his trust ratings also nose dived by losing-18% points from 57% to 39%.

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source : Philippine Daily Inquirer http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/727269/pulse-asia-binay-ratings-dive

those are very dramatic losses that will make any candidate or even a pollster shudder in fear. this means that on this aspect of Binay’s political life, people are very disappointed with him and that he is being abandoned by his supporters. the vice-president position is a very easy position to fulfill – because of the nature of the job, there are very little things to do unlike say the president or even the cabinet secretaries. because of the ease, the vice president in most surveys typically gets a much higher performance and trust rating than the president.

for Jejomar Binay to get a lower rating than Aquino in this survey says a lot about the huge disappointment that people have on Binay.

in a newspaper report, Binay questions the credibility of this survey by saying he has already resigned his cabinet posts when the survey was conducted, wondering what it was the respondents were rating him for his performance and trust.

Binay is mistaken and raises an irrelevant issue – the survey had asked the respondents on his performance and trust as vice president of the country, not as any of the cabinet post he has occupied and resigned from. respondents are measuring him on the basis of what the respondents think is the job and function of the vice president. as vice-president of the country, the respondents have seen his performance and trust dramatically drop.

in recent surveys released previous to this, Binay’s ratings have shown his declining ratings continue to drop. not only that, his ranking has changed from a high 2nd to either being tied by Roxas at 2nd or falling to 3rd/4th position. the ratings of mar roxas, the LP and admin standard bearer has seen his ratings surge up both in terms of numbers and position where he used to be a far 4th to now a tie at 2nd (posted here in this blog).

the questions asked of the respondents here were point blank – who would they elect as president if the elections were held at the time of the survey and who they think is a good leader to replace Aquino as president.

Binay getting declining numbers on these different surveys says a large part of Binay’s supporters are abandoning Binay in a mass exodus. they are abandoning Binay based on different dimensions of the candidate as Binay – on trust and performance as VP, as a good leader to replace Aquino and as presidential candidate. Binay is being looked at from different dimensions by the voters and in all aspects they no longer see Binay as fit.

on their own these are already dramatic and impressive declines. put that further into context, Binay used to be the top on all the surveys just a few months ago. he was all alone on top with no one even close to challenge him. Binay’s standing started to erode when alleged charges of corruption and plunder were revealed at the senate hearings. at the height of the weekly hearings, when it became vey apparent that Binay was mired in multiple corruption charges, Grace Poe a neophyte senator surged up in the surveys .

the voters saw Binay as the evil one based on the alleged charges while they saw Poe as good in an election that quickly got into a question of an election of Good vs Evil.

we have said this before. Binay should recognize what is happening to his candidacy, these survey numbers are real and representing real sentiments. the sentiments are astoundingly consistent from many dimensions. for him to change his fortunes, he needs to wear big boy pants and face the charges that have been made against him. until he does that, the declining trend will not change and continue until the actual 2016 election.

does binay have big boy pants?

 

 

 

 

 

did Esquire Philippines lampoon DILG Secretary Mar Roxas, the next president of the Philippines?

November 7, 2014 6 comments

true story – we were shocked when we saw that cover  of Esquire Philippines for its November 2014 issue. to calm down my heart which was in complete disbelief, we shifted from coffee to apple juice. it was after all still early in the morning. we wanted to give our heart some reprieve this early Friday morning.

then, it dawned on us – wait, this might be a hoax. this might not be the real cover of Esquire Philippines’  November 2014 issue. Esquire we thought does not have bad taste and certainly not this bad. so for another half hour, we searched the internet to find out what is exactly the November issue cover.

it was not easy to find but we eventually found out that yup, this is the real cover of the November issue. see for yourself here : https://www.facebook.com/EsquirePh/photos/pb.183140925069879.-2207520000.1415326861./827886413928657/?type=1&theater

after having it confirmed for sure that that is the cover, here is why we were shocked by the cover:

no, the shock is not that the choice for the cover article is Mar Roxas. we will not pass judgement on that editorial decision of the magazine.

but we are passing judgement on is the editorial choice of the photo of Mar Roxas. we are very sure there were dozens of photos taken of him for the cover and in fact before that there should have been an editorial meeting on what kind of cover photo should be taken and what choices will be made eventually.

what we were shocked about is the choice of this particular photo of Roxas on the cover of the magazine. the choice stinks. and it puts the DILG secretary on a very, very unflattering pose and look. that made us wonder out aloud – is Esquire Magazine insulting Mar Roxas, an almost sure thing presidential candidate to the 2016 elections? did they lampoon the possibly next president of the country?

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look at the photo :

  • Roxas has a sheepish almost grade school smile on his face. it’s not a smile of an adult and an adult who is the secretary of the DILG and possibly the next president of the Philippines
  • his hair is unkempt and not brushed, like he  just woke up in the morning and immediately went down from his hotel room for the shoot before he took a bath and brushed his hair
  • and that wave – what is that? is that like a Miss Universe beauty queen wave?
  • not only that, why the heck is Roxas waiving to the audience? what is the message here, what is the point? why is he saying hello? or why is Roxas giving a Miss Universe beauty queen wave? we could not find a sensible reason. we think the wave is the worst in this photo.
  • okay, we get the background – these are construction materials and some delivery van which we get means Roxas is on the rehabilitation of Tacloban which is the status of the city. we get the message but is this the best way to deliver that message?
  • and why on earth are there 3 people standing on the background? the photographer and producers of Esquire Magazine were not able to ask them to move out of the shot even for 5 minutes?
  • very minor, but why is he holding a cellphone?

on the over-all and even on specifics that cover photo sucks! it does not present the subject in a flattering look and pose, something you usually want for a cover photo. and the pose does not make sense at all, plus the production values suck.

Esquire is a men’s fashion magazine cum intellectual magazine, it is stylish and of substance. none of that is reflected on the choice of this cover photo. the magazine on the top left of it describes itself as “Man at its best”. in this photo, they presented Mar Roxas, a man, a DILG secretary of the country and possibly the next president of the country not “at its best” but at “its silliest”.

we can’t help it, we are drawn to it like gravity will pull down something that is up in the air, our conclusion is this – Esquire Philippines lampooned Mar Roxas.

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the same Esquire Philippines magazine cover is apparently getting a lot of attention in social media and is on the Philippine Daily Inquirer website:

Mar Roxas gets social media flak for magazine cover

MANILA, Philippines — What about Interior Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas saying hello from Tacloban got netizens irked?

Roxas received flak on social media after he was featured on the cover of “Esquire Philippines” magazine commemorating the first anniversary of Supertyphoon “Yolanda” (international name: Haiyan).

The official Facebook account of Esquire shared the photo of its cover featuring a smiling and gentle Roxas, whose right hand was raised in a greeting while sitting on a pile of cut wood behind a cargo truck.

The caption of the photo reads: “Hello from Tacloban… One year later.” Roxas’ smiling photo was taken about a year ago or on November 21, 2013, at the Tacloban City Port.

Some netizens called the photo “insensitive,” in “bad taste,” and an “insult” to the typhoon victims. Still, others noted a hint of sarcasm, a sense of a story, and even a note of hope.

“Esquire this is really done in bad taste. Give respect to the people of Tacloban,” commented Joseph Ongkeko Delos Reyes.

“Bad move. How about putting the pictures of those who survived the disaster?” Dee Ferraris Necèsito pointed out.

Read more: http://lifestyle.inquirer.net/176519/mar-roxas-gets-social-media-flak-for-magazine-cover#ixzz3INTI79g1

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update on this one, as of November 9, 2014, 6:48 pm.

we did not know these things before we published this post:

a PDI article says that this picture of Mar Roxas was taken last year and not recently as we would think it would be since this is the cover of the  November 2014 issue. 

a Rappler.com article says Mar Roxas DID NOT grant an interview with the magazine for the article. it also said the article on Mar Roxas was written by Boo Chanco, a columnist from a newspaper. 

note that we have not read the article itself, we just saw the cover photo on the website of Esquire Philippines. 

given those two things from PDI and Rappler.com it looks like we were right that this article lampoons Roxas. it is meant to mock or put him in a bad light.  that explains very well why the choice for the cover photo was really a terrible photo of him. from the point of view of cover photos, they usually flatter the subject but from the context of mocking and lampooning the subject matter, Roxas, choosing a bad picture of the subject is the correct editorial decision. the choice is meant to disrespect Roxas.

our instinct, well okay our suspicion based on that horrible picture was right. 

question – did you dislike roxas after you saw this? 

~wawam.

we have been posting comments on this at Facebook, please read herehttps://www.facebook.cothis one m/wawam.blogs

one of the things we posted:

we do not think this article was a PR effort for Roxas. it was reported that Roxas did not grant an interview for the article. if it was a PR effort for him, he would certainly give an interview. not only will he give an interview, he would have a say on the cover photo and for sure this is not a photo he will agree to.

we also did a scan of Esquire covers for the Philippines and the USA magazines. all of the cover photos i saw are of 1 person, almost all are studio shots, glamour shots and high concept. none of that is in the Roxas cover photo. this one is very different from the rest can mean something happened on this one.

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there is more to this :

posted November 10, 2014, morning.

many netizens were hating on Mar Roxas because Roxas appeared on the cover of the magazine on Yolanda and Tacloban. many of the netizens thought this was a PR effort for Roxas, something that the camp of Roxas has engineered for him to appear at the magazine to promote himself for the elections. as we said previously, we wereIMG_2484 not concerned on the choice of the magazine to feature Roxas on it. we were reacting just to the photo choice of the magazine and even at the start we thought this was a lampoon of Roxas given the terrible photo choice. in other words, we did not think this was a PR effort for Roxas. on the contrary, we thought this was meant to mock Roxas. it is some kind of a demolition job on him.

last night, we saw boo chanco, author of the article at the magazine post at Facebook the message above – the article was not a PR effort for Roxas.

this also appeared at the PDI internet edition last night:

Magazine denies endorsing Roxas on cover of ‘Yolanda’ anniversary issue

MANILA, Philippines—After receiving backlash from netizens by featuring a smiling Interior Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II on its cover, Esquire Philippines denied that they are endorsing the secretary, saying that he is just “a symbol of national government response.”

“Secretary Mar Roxas is on the cover as a symbol of the national government response. Nothing less or more. We were certainly not paid or persuaded to put him on the cover,” Esquire Philippines said in a post on its official Facebook account Sunday.

Roxas is said to be the leading candidate of the administration’s Liberal Party for the 2016 presidential polls.

Esquire Philippines said that its November issue, which commemorates the first anniversary of the onslaught of Super Typhoon “Yolanda” (Haiyan), is dedicated to dignify the “memory of those lost, and the pain of those left behind in Tacloban City.”

“We at Esquire Philippines will always dignify the memory of those lost, and the pain of those left behind in Tacloban City. Our November issue is dedicated to that purpose.”

“In the issue itself, our writers and photographers revisit Tacloban in order to gather and present the very human tragedies that are still ongoing one year after Yolanda, as well as sift the facts regarding the government’s response,” the magazine said.

Read more: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/649703/magazine-denies-endorsing-roxas-on-cover-of-yolanda-anniversary-issue#ixzz3Id99CaZy
Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

there are a few things on that explanation by Esquire :

  • how is Roxas the “symbol of the national government response”? and in that kind of a pose with a “hello” wave? what kind of symbolism is that? we have not read the article but we hope this was explained in the article. but surely the photo they chose does not seem to speak of any symbolism of any substance.
  • we are totally lost and it really does  not make sense how a one year old picture of Roxas in that kind of pose and quality achieves any of this :  “We at Esquire Philippines will always dignify the memory of those lost, and the pain of those left behind in Tacloban City. Our November issue is dedicated to that purpose.”. for sure there is no “dignity” in that picture at least for Roxas and the whole concept of a high ranking government official giving a “hello” wave. they talk of “pain of those left behind” – again, there is nothing in that picture that comes close to that.
  • then Esquire talks about our “writers and photographers revisit Tacloban in order to gather and present the very human tragedies that are still ongoing one year after Yolanda, as well as sift the facts regarding the government’s response“. they talk about “current” and yet they chose a one year old picture and it is a picture of Roxas, not of the city or things that are being done at the city, or how the city itself looks now. with that stated goal, you would think a picture of Tacloban the place or Tacloban the place and its people now would have been more appropriate and more on strategy with that thinking. instead they chose a one year old picture of Roxas in a silly pose.

here is where we are at :

  • the cover photo and article is not a PR effort for Roxas
  • it is a terrible photo choice of Roxas
  • this is an extreme departure from all previous Esquire cover photos.  this photo is highly inconsistent with the other cover photos the magazine puts out – glamour shots of the subject, shot in a studio and with some high concept or has some drama in it
  • that cover photo does not achieve the stated goals of Esquire
  • or Esquire can’t seem to justify their cover photo choice no matter how hard they try
  • a photo of Tacloban or Tacloban and its people would have been more appropriate given their goals and what they say is the content of the article inside the magazine
  • which leads us to confirm our first suspicion – this was a lampoon of Roxas, a demolition job on the possibly next president of the country

the longer this thing goes on and the more info we get, the worse this becomes for Esquire Philippines. instead of hating on Roxas, netizens should be hating on Esquire for its stupid editorial decisions.

sample of a typical Esquire Philippines magazine cover photo

the magnificent 350 hectare Binay Hacienda in Batangas – in pictures

October 10, 2014 Leave a comment

these are the aerial photos of the alleged Binay Hacienda. binay says he does not own it. it is nevertheless magnificent. aside from the things inside it, it is half the size of San Juan City.

pictures from here :

Binay can kiss his 2016 presidential bid goodbye

– See more at: http://www.ellentordesillas.com/2014/10/09/binay-can-kiss-his-2016-presidential-bid-goodbye/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+EllenTordesillas+%28Ellen+Tordesillas%29&utm_content=Netvibes#sthash.QC4ekcaY.dpuf

 

 

 

 

 

from PDI:

 

 

 

the unfortunate spin of 2016 presidentiable mar roxas

April 12, 2014 Leave a comment

we saw the above tweet by  philippine daily inquirer this morning. the strong coffee we were drinking was no match to that tweet waking us up.

first thing that popped in my mind was – “what? wow is roxas that rich that he will ‘give P4B to survivors’?”. i thought roxas would be the biggest individual donor to yolanda survivors. i thought roxas deserves a monument with his P4B donation to yolanda survivors.

i immediately clicked the PDI (philippine daily inquirer) link to read the full article and this was what we found out – 20140412-111825.jpgcontrary to the headline of the article, the P4B that “roxas will give to survivors” is not coming from his own pocket but actually from the government.

that headline surely and very strongly communicated the P4B was coming from mar roxas’ own pocket not from any government fund or government project.

the words said it (“Roxas to give P4B for survivors“) and not only that the lead-in to the headline also reinforced it – “Christmas in Lent”. that lead-in clearly says it is like some christmas present that roxas is giving to the survivors.

(full article here : http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/593735/christmas-in-lent-roxas-to-give-p4b-for-survivors)

all that of course is incorrect. in fact the whole article talked about the funds coming from government funds. there was nothing at all in the article where it said it will come from the personal funds of roxas but all of it from the government.

it feels like two different people handled this article – the person who wrote the article is a different person who wrote the headline.

The P4 billion is apart from the almost P1.8 billion in rehabilitation funds that the government has started distributing to typhoon-stricken cities and municipalities in three regions in the Visayas, Roxas said at an orientation seminar on the Recovery Assistance on Yolanda here.

Read more: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/593735/christmas-in-lent-roxas-to-give-p4b-for-survivors#ixzz2ydjv0gSu 

 

so what happened there?

we think the misleading headline is the result of some PR work from Mar Roxas for the 2016 presidential campaign. the roxas campaign was able to get to the PDI reporter and/or the PDI desk editor on this one. often, the desk editor is the one responsible for writing the headlines for articles submitted by field reporters to the “desk”.  the desk editor also has the prerogative to rewrite or add things to the article from the original that reporters write.

it is either the roxas PR team got to them or the PDI writer and/or desk editor somehow found it smart to write a misleading headline on their own. of course the first part is speculation on our part and perhaps even the second one too.

to be fair the PDI is one of the most if not the most difficult to do PR work with. they are very independent will write and publish what they want regardless of who it is trying to influence them.

we suspect that this was PR spin for two reasons – (a) the framing of the fund release is highly suspect, it was being framed as like a christmas gift (“christmas in lent”) and (b) “roxas giving P4B” is an idea that is not at all in the article. it does feel very much that the one who wrote the article is not the same person who wrote the headline.

on the first one, the closest that to the framing of a “christmas gift” was what roxas said was this which was in the article:

“Advance Happy Easter. May you spend your money wisely to help your [constituents],” Roxas told local officials of Capiz as he handed over more than P200 million in rehabilitation aid for his home province.

 

roxas mentioned “happy easter” but somehow the framing morphed into a “christmas gift”. “framing of messages” to favor or skew the message to a particular person or group is typically done by PR practitioners, not editors of newspapers. in this one, it is obvious the effort was meant for the benefit of mar roxas.

the other part of this is that we think saying the money is some kind of “gift” we feel is very insulting and degrading to the survivors. gifts, specially christmas gifts are a happy occasion and a source of joy, something that is given willingly. these funds are not at all in that context, the funds for the rehabilitation of destroyed properties of people. the people suffered and lost a lot. this is being received as  a gift in the context of Christmas joy, it is aid or help to the misery that the people had to endure and are still enduring.

we understand mar roxas has plans to run for president in 2016 and by the looks of it the campaign period has already started with efforts already being done by his main competitor, vice president binay.

with that we also understand that there should now be PR efforts for the presdinetiables, but we think this kind of PR effort for the presdientiable mar roxas is very much misplaced and incorrect from a marketing and political campaign point of view.

if we are right about this being spin for the mar roxas campaing, then we think the campaign has not developed and is not following a strategic plan for the roxas campaign. that is a very dangerous lack and can hurt the presdientiable roxas.

 

 

 

abolish the PDAF, cleanse the tarnished soul of the nation

October 30, 2013 Leave a comment

the pork barreal scam or the PDAF scam has taken a large portion of the country’s attention in the past months. since it was first published as headline news on the front pages of Philippine Daily Inquirer (PDI), it has stayed and not left the consciousness of the nation.

if at all, it the issue has even grown from just the PDAF to now the DAP which while very different from each other, the DAP has taken the same sinister image of the PDAF.

corruption has once again become the number 1 issue among the people and the PDAF is the one and only poster boy for it, the DAP following closely.

the pork barrel in all its forms, in all its systems in whatever set of letters it gets resurrected into should be abolished :

1. The PDAF is a duplication of what line agencies and LGUs (local government units) are mandated to do. Line agencies like the DSWD (social welfare), DOH (health) and DPWH (public works) and others perform the same function as what the PDAF funds are “claimed” to be used for. LGUs are the elected local officials like the governor, mayor and barangay officials who are primarily responsible for day to day life in the barangays.

The PDAF are spent on the same projects and programs that line agencies and LGUs already have or are supposed to do.

 

2. The legislative branch of the government, House of Representatives (congressmen) and the Senate (senators) have a specific role as mandated by the constitution – they write the laws of the land, not perform the function of the line agencies and LGUs. It is the reason why they are called “lawmakers” or legislators, not government agency or local government executives.

Some legislators defend the PDAF on the basis of them “representing” their specific constituents and therefore are in a better position to know what the needs of their localities.

That thinking is infirm in two points – the lawmakers are the representatives of their localities in lawmaking, not in daily life improvements and needs which the line agencies and the LGUs perform on a daily basis.

The LGUs who actually live and serve right in the localities of the barangays are better if not as fully equipped as the lawmakers are in knowing what is needed by the constituents.

 

3. The PDAF institutes and nurtures the padrino system or the politics of patronage between the president of the country and the lawmakers. The control and disbursement of the PDAF has several gatekeepers. The first gatekeeper is the president who through the DBM allocates the amounts among the lawmakers and approves the projects which the PDAF fund will pay for. This system makes the lawmakers beholden to the president for his PDAF. The lawmaker may feel the need to please the president if not not go against the president and bend his principles on questions of legislation so that the president will return the favor and release his PDAF. The lawmaker might vote in favor of legislation not on its merits but just so to buy favor from the president. In fact some legislators have admitted as much on it where it apparently was rampant during the arroyo administration.

The president may also use the release of the PDAF as a bargaining chip to force lawmakers to go his way. This in fact has been one of the rumors during the impeachment trial of the Supreme Court chief justice where lawmakers who were not supportive of the impeachment charged their PDAF was being put on hold or its release delayed by the president.

4. The same padrino system and politics of patronage is also being instituted and nurtured between the lawmakers and voters. Unfortunately, it has been a habit of Pinoy voters to ask money from their lawmakers for their emergency needs like money for sickness or death for example. The lawmaker who gives them the money expects that the voter to whom he gives his money to will vote for him in the next election. At the same time, to ensure getting the money, the voter who receives the money promises to vote for the lawmaker.

We often here voters admit that they vote for a certain candidate and also campaign for the candidate among his/her friends and relatives because the specific congressman has “helped” him with his financial emergencies.

When this happens, the voter votes for the candidate not for his skills or record but because he was given money by the candidate.

 

5. Lawmakers have used the PDAF like their own re-election campaign fund. The PDAF is taxpayers money but the lawmakers have used it like it is their personal fund that they can use in any which way they want to, including getting them reelected.

Epal politics, where elected officials put their names and faces on ambulances, waiting sheds and buildings evolved from the PDAF. Epal politics make it appear that these came from them, like they spent their own money on them while in truth these are from their PDAF which are taxpayers money.

 

6. As shown in the most recent pork barrel scam that is occupying the minds of the nation, the PDAF is the petri dish for corruption. It has been used by the lawmakers to amass wealth for themselves with the help of a citizen like Janet Napoles.

Based on news reports, the money stolen by the lawmakers and Napoles is at minimum P10B! and this is just the initial report. there should be more to be revealed.

People see the PDAF is cancer itself that has invaded the pinoy soul. While most of us are not involved in it nor are the beneficiaries of it, we see it now as affecting our lives in a very major and negative way. It is very painful to hear our government leaders talk or complain about not having enough funds to hire more competent people to do the work, for facilities and equipment in government hospitals, or not enough bridges and roads and many other things lacking  and yet now we know at least P10B of taxpayers’ money may have been siphoned off to the pockets of lawmakers and individuals.

We see more than corruption here, we also see grave injustice, the type that tarnishes the soul of the nation. To cleanse it, the PDAF needs to be abolished. maybe starting from a clean zero state will help us rebuild our souls.

 

revilla, enrile, estrada, marcos, lanette & 23 other lawmakers contributed their pork barrel funds to P10B “mother of all scams” – PDI

July 15, 2013 1 comment

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PDI photo

we are aggregating here the articles published at the Philippine Daily Inquirer which is being called the P10B Mother Of All Scams involving the pork barrel funds (PDAF) of senators and members of congress. we think this is so important we are making it easy for pinoys to read all the important articles on the matter.

28 solons linked to scam

Revilla gave pork to syndicate 22 times

By 

12:13 am | Monday, July 15th, 2013

(Fourth of a series)

Five senators and 23 members of the House of Representatives allegedly made available their pork barrel funds to dummy nongovernment organizations for purported ghost projects worth P10 billion over the past decade, according to affidavits submitted to the National Bureau of Investigation.

Janet Lim-Napoles. president of JLN Corporation – PDI pic

Revilla gave the syndicate access to his PDAF, or pork barrel, to dummy NGOs formed by Napoles and registered in the Securities and Exchange Commission in 22 instances; followed by Senators Juan Ponce Enrile on 21 occasions; Jinggoy Estrada, 18 times; Ferdinand Marcos Jr., four; and Gringo Honasan, once with a small amount.

Contrary to one newspaper report, Sen. Loren Legarda was not involved in the scam, said the principal whistle-blower, Benhur Luy, a former Napoles employee. “There was an attempt, but I heard she was dropped because she scrutinized it and she was very keen on receipts,” Luy told the Inquirer.

Seachon-Lanete

Topping the list of 23 House representatives is Rizalina Seachon-Lanete of Masbate’s third district, who allowed her pork to be used 13 times; followed by Conrado Estrella III of Pangasinan’s 6th district and Rodolfo Plaza of Agusan del Sur, both nine occasions; and Samuel Dangwa, of Benguet, eight.

Contacted by the Inquirer last week, Estrada said he would comment after he had read the affidavits secured by the NBI and had enough background information on the subject. Enrile and Revilla were not immediately available at the weekend but were expected to likewise respond to the issues raised against them.

Faced with a similar issue on their pork barrel funds going to spurious projects of bogus NGOs a few months back, Estrada called for an investigation into who could have unduly benefited from the scam.

All three senators earlier acknowledged that they had identified agriculture projects that were funded by their pork but denied any knowledge that an NGO that handled the funds was a bogus organization.

The three had asked the Department of Agriculture to shed light on how the concerned PDAF funds released between 2009 and 2010 were actually spent.

Reached by phone last week, former Rep. Arthur Pingoy asked where the PDAF was supposedly sourced from. He asked for details about the JLN company and said he would have it checked. He said he would then get back to the Inquirer.

‘Nothing to do with that’

Rep. Victor Ortega said: “I have nothing to do with that. I did not receive a single sack of fertilizer nor received a single peso from the fund for the fertilizer. The accuser should face me and tell me personally.” He said of Napoles: “I have never met her nor talked to her. I do not know her.”

Each senator has a PDAF budget of P200 million annually; congressmen each have a P70-million pork allocation, but during the Arroyo administration, favored senators and congressmen received more than they were supposed to get. Under the law, the lawmakers have the sole discretion in the disposition of their pork barrel.

Based on the documents obtained by the Inquirer, Enrile, at one time, downloaded P111 million of his PDAF to three dummy NGOs on the same date. Of the total amount, only P35 million allegedly went to the Napoles NGOs.

LGU involvement

A total of P3 billion was on the whistle-blowers’ list for the years 2006-2011. Implementing agencies for this total amount were the National Livelihood Development Corp. and the Technology Resource Center.

Apart from the 20 dummy organizations, the list also showed that 30 local government units were recipients of the pork barrel. However, according to the whistle-blowers, there were LGUs that were not aware of the funds and did not receive a single centavo.

The whistle-blowers also identified banks where the accounts of the bogus NGOs were deposited.

Banks

Deposits were made in the following banks:

Read more…

Categories: juan ponce enrile, Kahindik-hindik, P10B pork barrel scam, politics in the philippines Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

P10Billion pork barrel scam : so much cash that money placed in the bathtub – PDI

July 15, 2013 Leave a comment

we are aggregating here all the articles philippine daily inquirer has published on the P10 Billion pork barrel scam. this is so important to the country that we want to make it easier for pinoys to get all the important information PDI has been publishing.

our thanks to PDI for this series of articles.

this is article #1:

P10B Scam No1

continuation of above article :

The sworn affidavits—prepared by six whistle-blowers with the assistance of their lawyer, Levito Baligod, and submitted to the NBI—stated that JLN Corp., with offices on the 25th floor of Discovery Suites in Ortigas Center in Pasig City, had defrauded the government of billions of pesos in ghost projects involving the creation of at least 20 bogus nongovernment organizations. These NGOs were supposedly the ultimate recipients of the state funds, but the money went to Napoles, according to the affidavits of the six whistle-blowers.

All six were interviewed by the Inquirer, which also secured copies of their sworn statements. The extent of the swindling brought tears to one NBI agent in an interview.

The kidnap victim, Benhur K. Luy, the principal witness to the scam, was rescued by a special task force headed by Rolando Argabioso, assistant NBI regional director, on March 22 from a condominium unit in the South Wings Gardens of Pacific Plaza Tower in Bonifacio Global City.

Kidnapping charges were brought by the NBI against Napoles and Lim, but these were subsequently dropped purportedly for “lack of probable cause.” Lim was arrested and briefly detained. Napoles issued an affidavit denying involvement in the abduction.

Since then, the 31-year-old Luy, Napoles’ cousin and personal assistant in JLN Corp., has executed affidavits detailing his abduction and the reasons why he was kidnapped. In one signed statement, he said he was accused by Napoles of striking out on his own concocting illegal deals, without her knowledge, copying schemes from his cousin’s operations.

Five others who had worked in JLN Corp. have come out to corroborate the account of Luy, detailing the activities of Napoles. One of them was a project coordinator and another was a nanny who was made president of a dummy NGO. The rest were clerks and support staff.

Joc-joc scam probe

The 49-year-old Napoles was summoned to the investigation conducted in 2008 by the Senate blue ribbon committee on the P728-million fertilizer scandal involving then Agriculture Undersecretary Jocelyn “Joc-joc” Bolante. She then testified she had used dummy companies in that scheme but no charges have so far been brought against her in connection with that case.

The sources of funding for the supposed projects, ostensibly meant largely to benefit poor farmers through provisions of fertilizers and farm equipment and implements, came from the priority development assistance funds (PDAF), or pork barrel, of three senators and 11 members of the House of Representatives.

Also tapped by the syndicate were the Malampaya oil fund and allocations by the Department of Budget and Management for the Technology Resource Corp. (formerly the Technology and Livelihood Resource Corp.), National Livelihood Development Corp. and National Agri-Business Corp., Department of Agriculture and Department of Agrarian Reform.

 

Lawmakers’ commissions

The whistle-blowers said JLN Corp. was able to carry on the swindle through Napoles’ vast network and connections.

“JLN offered to lawmakers commissions equivalent to 40 to 60 percent of the amount of PDAF in exchange for the right to determine the implementing agency and fund beneficiary,” according to Luy.

“Apart from senators and congressmen, Madame Janet has also connections in almost all branches of government, friends in the right places, and lawyers who do her bidding,” he told the Inquirer in an interview.

Luy, who has a ready smile and sports a white side wall haircut, said he began working for his cousins in September 2002. Over the past decade, he said he had gained intimate knowledge of their operations, how they manufactured receipts, forged signatures of local government officials, fabricated names of beneficiaries of the state funds.

He said he had planned to put up his own business and establish his own network similar to his cousins’. But before he could go on his own, Napoles learned of his plan and locked him up first in the JLN office on Dec. 19, 2012, before he was later taken to the condominium.

The NBI team rescued Luy on the evening of March 22 on orders of Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and NBI Director Nonnatus Rojas following a complaint for abduction lodged by Baligod in the Department of Justice.

Read more…

Categories: Kahindik-hindik, P10B pork barrel scam Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Janet Lim-Napoles denies involvement in P10B pork barrel scam & other scams

July 15, 2013 1 comment

we are aggregating here all the articles philippine daily inquirer has published on the P10 Billion pork barrel scam. this is so important to the country that we want to make it easier for pinoys to get all the important information PDI has been publishing.

our thanks to PDI for this series of articles.

this is article #2:

P10B Scam No2

click link below to read the rest of the article.

from the article :

High-profile scams

“I certainly was not involved in any of the high-profile scams which occurred during the previous administration. In fact, I found out in news reports that the Sandiganbayan issued a resolution clearing the suspects in the (Joc-joc Bolante) fertilizer scam. My name or JLN Corp. was not even mentioned in the said resolution clearing the suspects in the fertilizer scam.

“My name or JLN Corp. was not even mentioned in said resolution, proving that I and my business outfit are not involved in said scam,” Napoles said in her affidavit.

She said that Luy concocted the supposed kidnapping after she confronted him about a claim that he had secured an unauthorized loan for the company of P5 million and that he pocketed P300,000 she had asked him to deposit in the bank.

Since 2001

In 2001, Napoles and her husband, retired Army Maj. Jaime Napoles, were among 18 personnel of the Navy Marine Corps and civilians, charged by the Office of Ombudsman in the Sandiganbayan with graft and malversation in connection with the acquisition of substandard Kevlar helmets worth P3.8 million.

Seven years later, Napoles was called in the investigation conducted by the Senate blue ribbon committee on the P728-million fertilizer scam involving then Agriculture Undersecretary Jocelyn “Joc-joc” Bolante. The inquisitors extracted from her statements that she had formed dummy companies to launder the funds of the Department of Agriculture. Curiously, no charges were officially filed against her.

Read more: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/443825/i-am-not-involved-in-any-scam#ixzz2Z5NfCyUZ 

Categories: juan ponce enrile, Kahindik-hindik, politics in the philippines Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

P10B pork barrel scam – Napoles talked to senators & congressmen

July 15, 2013 Leave a comment

we are aggregating here all the articles philippine daily inquirer has published on the P10 Billion pork barrel scam. this is so important to the country that we want to make it easier for pinoys to get all the important information PDI has been publishing.

our thanks to PDI for this series of articles.

this is article #3:

P10B Scam No3

continuation of the article :

The funds, which were deposited in the foundations’ bank accounts, were eventually remitted to her to be split between her and the lawmaker whose PDAF allotment was used, or the official of the state agency involved.

The first step was to identify the source of fund, such as the pork barrel.

Napoles talked to senators

Either JLN staff would write a lawmaker requesting funding, say for the purchase of farm inputs on behalf of mayors or governors, or the lawmaker himself would indicate that his pork barrel be allocated to an agency, say the Department of Agriculture (DA).

It was Napoles who would talk to the senator, or his or her chief of staff, according to Merlina Suñas, JLN’s former account executive.

For good measure, the letters forwarded to the lawmaker’s office bore the scanned letterhead of the mayor’s or governor’s office, and the official’s forged signature.

Once everything was cleared, the staff would convince local governments to agree that the fund be released into preidentified foundations or NGOs with the promise of commission. The Department of Budget and Management would then issue a special allotment release order (Saro) to be charged against the lawmaker’s PDAF allocation, and later the notice of cash allocation (NCA), to the agency upon the submission by the lawmaker of a list of beneficiary-agencies.

Read more: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/444275/how-p10-b-racket-works#ixzz2Z5QjJuFu

to read the rest of the article, please click the above link

Categories: juan ponce enrile, Kahindik-hindik, P10B pork barrel scam, politics in the philippines Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

anti RH Law lawyers embarrass themselves at the Supreme Court

July 15, 2013 Leave a comment

we are printing in full here the article written by Oscar Franklin Tan published at the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

we think this was very well written article – it gave all the salient facts of the oral arguments at the SC on the RH Law in a very easy to read and easy to understand way. we are not a lawyer but it was very easy for us to understand it as the article very wisely put the legal logic in the proper sequence and the legalese reachable to the ordinary reader. you come out understanding all of it after reading the article.

RH: No case, Carpio shows

 By 

8:44 pm | Friday, July 12th, 2013
Lawyers seeking to invalidate the Reproductive Health Act bogged down in the first Supreme Court hearing on July 9 after failing to argue jurisdiction and misstating doctrine.

Former Sen. Francisco Tatad opened with a triple gamble. He framed the law as “imposing population control through state-mandated contraception.” He argued that it installed the government as official provider of contraception, which conflicts with its constitutional duty to protect the “sanctity of family life,” the “right of spouses to found a family according to their religious convictions” and the “life of the unborn from conception.” He thus hinged the anti-RH case solely on proving contraception violates the “life of the unborn.”

Tatad tripled the bet, arguing that the RH Act violates international law by preventing births and causing genocide, and that Congress failed to render truth and justice in passing the law. “Are there some things that cannot be legalized?” he quoted Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. In minutes, he tripled his burden with two extreme positions extraneous to the constitutional debate.

atty. maria concepcion noche

Second, Noche’s claim was much narrower than what her rhetoric suggested. She argued that the Constitution protects life from fertilization but some contraceptives prevent the fertilized ovum’s implantation in the uterus, which she considers abortion. The narrow claim cannot cover all RH Act drugs, undercutting her broad attack on a still unimplemented law. (She barely discussed the right to health, alleging in a sentence that abortifacients also cause cancer.)

Floundering under most questions, Noche was knocked out by Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio on the jurisdiction issue she ignored. He asked whether she objected to the RH Act’s use only of drugs that do not prevent implantation (precluding the need to decide whether life begins at conception or implantation). She did not. Carpio asked if she objected to the law’s use only of nonabortifacient devices. She did not. He pointed out that she thus had no case over which the Court should take jurisdiction.

Noche insisted that, regardless of the law’s text, which she appeared to have no disagreement with, Carpio should take “judicial notice” that some drugs are abortifacient. He sprang his coup de grace: This request admits the case was premature. Carpio, and Justices Mariano del Castillo and Marvic Leonen, reminded Noche that evidence regarding abortifacients should be presented to the Food and Drug Administration, not the Court which is not a “trier of facts” (a ground to decline jurisdiction).

Noche’s all-or-nothing wager on abortifacients hamstrung her even before Carpio’s knockout punch. She admitted to Justice Presbitero Velasco and others that she is not objecting to condoms and other contraceptives that prevent fertilization, thus conceding that the law is valid at least in the context of condoms and weakening her blanket attack. She also tied this wager to her reenactment of congressional debates on when life begins, and insisted that the constitutional commissioners did not intend to allow Congress to define this. Carpio responded that the framers intended only to preclude the termination of pregnancies and never discussed conception’s meaning.

Noche unnecessarily took several extreme positions. Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno asked if a lowly clerk of court who had several children and felt another pregnancy might endanger her life would violate the Constitution if she used birth control to preserve her health. Noche replied yes. Sereno gave pointed examples ranging from her impeachment if she suggested birth control to such a clerk to whether Filipino women have been violating the Constitution since 1987. Noche even presented the unborn as having the most fundamental constitutional right. Sereno made her read the entire paragraph aloud: “[The State] shall equally protect the life of the mother and the life of the unborn….”

Justice Diosdado Peralta asked how Filipinos understood the word “conception,” and Noche gave a jaw-dropping reply: “I don’t think there’s a need to further consult the people on the meaning of the Constitution.” Peralta rebuked her, reminding her that it was the people who ratified the Constitution. Finally, Noche also asked Carpio to take judicial notice of medical journals which allegedly establish that life begins at fertilization. Carpio replied that several justices reviewed these and found medical opinion to be mixed, adding: “So if it is not settled in the medical profession, how do you expect us to rule?” Noche could only repeat her claim that constitutional-commission deliberations decided the issue (again, these are not a source of law).

Noche was unprepared for questions and, toward the end, simply fell into awkward silence when grilled by Carpio. Sereno also called her attention to noticeably long pauses during Sereno’s queries. Noche clearly misstated basic doctrine; she repeatedly pushed her central “legal basis” that the constitutional-commission deliberations determined that protection of life from the moment of conception means from the moment of fertilization—even after Peralta and Leonen reminded her that these deliberations are not binding law because the people ratified the Constitution, not its authors. When Leonen asked about “facial challenge,” the doctrine on general attack of a law, Noche was unfamiliar with it. Many times, she unresponsively repeated her speech, and Sereno at one point said, “I know your position, but you have not answered my question.”

Surprisingly, Noche claimed to Justice Lucas Bersamin that she was unfamiliar with spermicides. She also faltered when Leonen walked her through certain jurisdictional doctrines, highlighting he needed to satisfy his conscience that he was exercising legal, and not political, judgment.

Noche’s emotional tone distracted. At one point, she said RH Act author Rep. Edcel Lagman “conveniently redefined and reengineered” medical definitions to hold that life begins at implantation. She ended her speech passionately: “[The unborn] cannot even utter a word, or cry, or scream, or beg. … I now plead, your Honors, let the voice of the unborn be heard in the august halls of this supreme tribunal. Let their voice be yours.”

Her sole progress was having several justices agree with or be open to her argument that conception means fertilization, but Carpio already demonstrated the issue’s irrelevance. Bersamin drew laughter when he noted that Noche’s name is “Concepcion.” Small comfort given that she left jurisdiction—and thus her case—in grave doubt.

Oscar Franklin Tan (facebook.com/OscarFranklinTan, Twitter @oscarfbtan) teaches constitutional law at the University of the East.
Read more: http://opinion.inquirer.net/56385/rh-no-case-carpio-shows#ixzz2Z53YrD16 
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jv ejercito’s identity crisis, he is swimming in contradictions

March 11, 2013 Leave a comment

an article on 2013 senatoriable jv ejercito caught our attention. (see below) the headline struck us like a baseball bat – it was a headline that had a contradiction in it. on one hand JV says he wants to be his own man but the lead in  the headline identified him as “estrada’s son”. it’s either you are estrada’s son or you are yourself, an ejercito.

contradictions from senatoriable jv ejercito? we were not surprised. over at twitter (@wawam), we have talked about the many other contradictions from ejercito, including the name change that ejercito had done for himself.

the first paragraph in the PDI article plainly states what it also found as a contradiction:

He likes to be known as his father’s son, yet senatorial candidate Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito also says he wants to be his own man.

Read more: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/371355/estradas-son-jv-wants-to-be-his-own-man#ixzz2NCVc5Ibm

there were many more contradictions found in the article :

ejercito contradictions

ejercito is very much swimming in contradictions in that article that it almost made us dizzy. at first we thought maybe the dizziness was caused by a poorly written news article. that has happened before. but after reading the article at least three times, we thought the dizziness was not being caused by poor newspaper article writing, it was ejercito himself that was causing it with the contradictions he was dishing out in rapid succession.

this is bad news for ejercito from a marketing and advertising standpoint – an identity crisis is always not  a good thing to have in winning election campaigns. before consumers or in this case voters make a choice, they need to first know who the candidate is. ejercito seem to be using two sets of names, estrada and ejercito in different occasions and media which may put voters confused and unable to pin down who exactly is ejercito.

this identity crisis on its own is bad news but pair that with swimming in contradictions and it can be well, drowning to death. ejercito is obviously unable to adequately explain or give a good reason for the change in name.

half of ejercito thinks the name change is a good thing while the other half thinks its a bad thing, hence he goes to one end to the other like a pendulum gone crazy. ejercito seems to have one of his foot step on the other in every explanation he gives. we find it strange that senatoriable ejercito gives both good and bad things in the change of his name in the same interview.

we think poor or weak brand identification is one of the key reasons why UNA senatoriables suffered dramatic losses in rank and rating in the last SWS senatoriables poll.

(read here : dramatic drops for UNA & dramatic increases for Team PNoy in february SWS sentatoriables survey)

is jv ejercito following in the footsteps of UNA?

(note : jv ejercito is one of the top losers in rank and rating in the last SWS senatoriables poll)

ejercito PDI

(note : knowing PDI editors, we think the contradictory headline was intentionally written by them.)

read in full here : http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/371355/estradas-son-jv-wants-to-be-his-own-man

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