Tag Archives: Filipino

Christmastime WAS Here, as was Sendong

30 Dec

…(Washi) with its flashflood-manifested wrath.  So though the typical Filipino style long-lasting yuletide festivities for the year would be disrupted to heed calls for donations of time, money and other resources for relief, recovery and restoration, that in a span of days are starting to fizzle down.

Over a thousand dead, same number still missing and tens of thousands whose homes and livelihoods that took lifetimes to build now gone forever.

Who in their right minds can genuinely celebrate amidst that situation, knowing, okay, you may even donate every spare penny and time you’ve got and still it won’t be enough for the long-term support these people will need to fully recover.  So of course the tiniest bit of callousness (read: Valerie Concepcion and Kris Aquino) will be called out.

There would also elements of pure evil capitalizing from the disaster and taking advantage of people’s emotions to swindle good-hearted donors for their own benefit.  A lesser evil would be the politicians who would agree to donate this or that given their faces and names would be provided media mileage. Yeah, scum, you suddenly get the urge to want them to have been part of those flooded away forever.

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So does that mean those not directly affected be prohibited from having a good time? The survivors also need to understand that everyone in their own little way suffers, and to believe that the yuletide season is a reprieve from the constant negative things and asking them to NOT celebrate at all is like cutting off air.  There’s no good answer coming out of this because though personally if I were one of the dead (found or still missing), I would not seriously mind if the living acts to move on with their lives. Death after all is the final comfort.  Any left energies of those who remain should be focused on rebuilding the pieces of their life.

The Sendong survivors will continue to need help for a long time, so I hope & pray that:

  • The donors (of time, money & other items) to keep giving, to not get numbed by overwhelming calls for help
  • The government (national & LGU) and NGOs to not allow politics and egos to get in the way serving the survivors
  • The survivors themselves to be strong to keep the despair and darkness at bay
  • The rest of the world to not look the other way and act as if thise never happened, as wherever we are now, there is a good possibility that we may experience the ordeal they’ve had

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Oh, and I almost forgot to greet the Celebrant.  Happy Birthday! Was it?

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Also, the Philippines celebrate Rizal Day today.  As if it wasn’t enough that we just celebrated last June his 150th birthday that we have to honor him again on the day of his martyrdom. Meh. Told you I was a Bonifacio fan.

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The world and life does go on.  Outside Sendong, there are still a lot of people that need help one way or the other.

Playing with Perceptions this Holiday Season

15 Dec

The reason for the season?

The Philippines is known to have the longest Christmas celebration period in the world with the fact that we start as early as the ber months begin.  Some cultures perceive this practice as crass due to the holiday’s association with how commercialized the occassion has become.  Others see the Filipino spirit as courageous and contagious, given in some countries it is said that most of the suicides occur during this lonely time for those who don’t have anyone significant in their lives.

If your household has an Overseas Filipino going home for the holidays you’re awash with joy for the chance to again be with this loved one (additional excitement for their neighbors, godsons, goddaughters and relatives).  For the common salaried employee, it’ll be exciting to receive the Christmas bonuses to pay off debts or upgrade existing gadgets or wardrobe or other things.

With the secular and other organizations starting to rise in numbers, alternatives to a Jesus’ birthday centered occassion (oh well, not really for the most of us, admit it!)

 

Human rights with current events.

Taking some excerpts from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to play with the recent events that struck me with good and bad vibes at some point.

Article 5. No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading   treatment or punishment.

Article 11.

(1) Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed   innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trial at which he has   had all the guarantees necessary for his defence.

(2) No one shall be held guilty of any penal offence on account of any act or   omission which did not constitute a penal offence, under national or   international law, at the time when it was committed. Nor shall a heavier   penalty be imposed than the one that was applicable at the time the penal   offence was committed

Article 12.  No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family,   home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.

Money-induced family feud resulting in a murder.

Forcibly outed homosexuality on national television by a reputed UN Ambassador and being ostracized by the rest of the nation really leaves a bad taste in anyone’s mind in comparison to an implied outing via a viral mic dropping reaction video that was eventually  brushed aside with class.

Malicious intent to malign is present when one does not exercise diligent care on preventing the leak of private and very sensitive data as seen on that video confession.  If your accusations are indeed true, you are encouraged to go to court and file the necessary charges rather than fuel the fire further.  It would have been easy to have contacted that video sharing site at the first instance of viewing that you were made aware of and formally request that it be removed instead of releasing more inflammatory statements.

Executive and Judiciary go into battle as Legislative are made dogs out grappling for pork while sitting on the Reproductive Health and Freedom of Information bills that continues to rot.

I’ve never been part of the sample surveyed for the public opinion polls.  I guess that goes into the bucket list.  Recent release on approval ratings really off me.  Uhm, in the presidential elections may I remind you, more people did not vote for you than the actual ballots under your name.  It is not equivalent to public mandate authorizing you to do your every whim.  Each day I get more convinced that Pinoy Monkey Pride was correct in assuming that the story of the mentally-challenged kid on TV is your life story and that it’s being used to condition the public to have confidence on your decisions. In short: You’re more and more proving to be a douche!

The appearance of urgency during the season’s mall, road and public transport congestion.  Bazaars. Sales.

Being “authorized” to redesign a rotting airport by apparently an overscoping government representative turns 8 months of free work with implied contract approvals ends up to nothing.

Opportunities for volunteering and giving to charities abound, a short-term “spiritual cleansing’ of sorts. Campaigns, tons of T-shirts. Gourmet coffee notebook planners.

Being more excited on the release of the latest gadget the following day.

Commission of Appointment grilling and rejecting confirmation of appointed diplomatic envoy to China and DSWD secretary.

Social media and it’s impact on the public’s easily swayed attention span. Occupy movements losing momentum and traction without measurable accomplishments.  Sigh.

Closure and hope for new beginnings.

Ups and downs included, it has been a fruitful year.  Windows and doors opening that allows me to pursue the life that could have been continues to overflow. Inspite of the difficult decisions one has to make to commit, it has all been worth it.  Pruning and trimming stages are both done.  Now is the time to let everything fall into place. THANK YOU UNIVERSE, MORE PLEASE.  Here’s to another great year ahead!

Andres Bonifacio: My Occupy Philippines National Hero

28 Nov

An advanced birthday treat for literally, my hero, who celebrates his 148th on November 30.

While I can barely remember the name of my university Filipino history professor, the arguments ensuing on the debate as to who was truly deserving to be called national hero still remains and feels fresh in my memory.  I guess this was the time when I started being a Bonifacio geek.

A photo engraving of Andres Bonifacio, founder...
Image via Wikipedia

It was a fight between Andres Bonifacio versus the incumbent Philippines National Hero Jose Rizal.  It was quite interesting to note that there were a lot of my class and schoolmates when asked truly sympathized with how The Supremo was treated by his supposed team mates/counterparts all fighting for independence.

I remember myself totally siding with Bonifacio because I have come across some material concluding that Rizal was after all, seeking equality in the sense that he’s after having Philippines as a legitimate province of Spain.  That in my books, does not fly.

Well, now Spain, after gunning down Rizal in Bagumbayan, has finally claimed Rizal as a legit “Son of Spain” (have seen this reference personally on Rizal’s statue in Madrid).  Whereas Bonifacio, the self-taught, radical revolutionary, has ways, approach and interests for true independence from our Spanish, Japanese, American and most importantly, the Illustrado ruling class.

Unlike the usual profile of the popular heroes of the country, Bonifacio was born in the slums, self-educated, and truly had his heart set on empowering the Filipino working masses.  His greatest work and accomplishment, was directing attention to the unjust class structure of the colonial system, the exploitation of the indigenous people.  His ideals aimed at engaging the masses to “occupy” and make fair the existing regime of the then Spanish then American rule in the Philippines.

Bonifacio was  victim of treachery and political maneuvering of the clannish middle-class factions leading to his death, and then cast aside by Americans for a more pacifist figure.  I used to look forward to seeing his likeness on the five peso bill before it was replaced and demoted to a two-peso coin and eventually disappear with the latest currency in the land. Which is really a huge shame.

I’d like to send out a little note and try to reach out to fellow Andres Bonifacio geeks out there to come out, and campaign to update our national hero into someone that truly represents the interests of all our countrymen – of independence from foreign rule, of economic sustainability by work that allows income disparity and indigenous people exploitation to fade away.

Happy 148th Birth Anniversary, Sir Andres –
 
Here’s hoping that the day will come that the rest of the country and the world realizes and gives you what the honor you truly deserve.
 
While your demographic continues to exist, there continues to be hope.
 
 
So let me end this post with one of the poems closest to my heart as with its writer (please use online translation tools available to translate):
 
PAG-IBIG SA TINUBUANG LUPA
(ni Andres Bonifacio y de Castro)
 
Aling pag-ibig pa ang hihigit kaya sa pagkadalisay at magkadakila
Gaya ng pag-ibig sa sariling lupa?
Aling pag-ibig pa?
Wala na nga, wala.
  
Pagpupuring lubos ang palaging hangad
Sa bayan ng taong may dangal na ingat,
Umawit, tumula, kumata’t at sumulat,
Kalakhan din niya’y isinisiwalat.
  
Walang mahalagang hindi inihandog
Ng may pusong mahal sa
Bayang nagkupkop, dugo, yaman, dunong, katiisa’t pagod,
Buhay ma’y abuting magkalagut-lagot.
  
Bakit? Alin ito na sakdal ng laki,
Na hinahandugan ng busong pagkasi,
Na sa lalong mahal nakapangyayari,
At ginugulan ng buhay na iwi?
  
Ay! Ito’y ang iang bayang tinubuan:
Siya’y iona’t tangi sa kinamulatan
Ng kawili-wiling liwanang ng araw
Na nagbigay-init sa buong katawan.
  
Kalakip din nito’y pag-ibig sa Bayan,
Ang lahat ng lalong sa gunita’y mahal,
Mula sa masaya’y gasong kasanggulan
Hanggang sa katawa’y mapasa-libingan.
  
Sa aba ng abang mawalay sa bayan!
Gunita ma’y laging sakbibi ng lumbay,
Walang alaala’t inaasa-asam
Kundi ang makita’y lupang tinubuan.
  
Pati ng magdusa’y sampung kamatayan
Wari ay masarap kung dahil sa bayan
At lalong mahirap.
Oh, himalang bagay!
 
 Lalong pag-irog pa ang sa kanya’y alay.
Kung ang bayang ito’y masasa-panganib
At siya ay dapat na ipagtangkilik,
Ang anak, asawa, magulang, kapatid;
  
Isang tawag niya’y tatalidang pilit.
Hayo na nga, hayo, kayong nagabuhay
Sa pag-asang lubos ng kaginhawahan
At walang tinamo kundi kapaitan,
  
Hayo na’t ibangon ang naabang bayan!
Kayong nalagasan ng bunga’t bulaklak
Ng kaho’y ng buhay na nilanta’t sukat,
Ng bala-balaki’t makapal na hirap, muling manariaw’t sa baya’y lumiyag.
 
 Ipahandug-handog ang busong pag-ibig
At hanggang may dugo’y ubusing itigis;
kung sa pagtatanggol, buhay ay mapatid,
Ito’y kapalaran at tunay na langit!

 

Buwan ng Wikang Pambansa, Ramadan, Si Cory, Isang Kaganapan at Isang Magaganap

1 Aug

Kaunting paumanhin sa mga banyagang makakabasa nito na hindi marunong gumamit ng mga teknolohiyang magsasalin ng mga salita sa wika na kanilang nais.

Ito na ang ikaapat na taon kong “panata” na mangusap sa ating pambansang wika, ngunit sa mga nakaraang taon, Linggo ng Wika lamang siya kaya mas madali.  Bakit ko siya ginagawa?  Wala lang?

Paliwanag para lalong madiin:  Mabisa itong panglibang kung masyadong teknikal ang aking gawain.  Naikukubli ko ang aking poot sa aking banyagang kinaiinisan dahil hindi niya ako maiintindihan.  Para siyang magsasanay ng pagiging malikhain para sa akin.  Kahit kumportable ako sa wikang ingles, napagtanto ko sa mga taong ito na masarap ring manatili sa sariling wika, kaparis ng mga Arabo, Indyano, Intsik, Pranses at iba pang mga bansang sikat ang lengguwahe.  Kung lahat ng mga salita ay may pagsasalin sa Filipino, matutuwa ako.

Kaya lang, mapapanindigan ko kaya ito? Abangan.

Di ako masyadong natuwa nung mga nakalipas na 2 Ramadan na nasa Muslim na bansa ako dahil natapat ito sa aking kaarawan.  Di kami masyadong makapagsaya dahil ang aming mga kapitbahay ay nagtitika.  Ni hindi ako makapagdala ng kaunting handa sa opisina dahil pasok siya sa oras na bawal kumain o uminom man lang ng tubig na makikita ng nangingilin.  Kailangan patago.  Bagaman nakakatakot ang mga kalsada dahil ang mga nagmamanehong nangingilin ay parang mga hibang sa gutom at uhaw papunta sa mga iftar, masaya pa rin makisalo sa kanila at ang kanilang mga salaysay ukol sa pagdiriwang na ito sa mundo ng ating mga Muslim na kapatid.

Ngayon din ginugunita ang ikalawang taong kamatayan ng Dating Pangulong Corazon Aquino. Di man ako lubusang natuwa sa lahat ng kanyang ginawa at tinuran, nakakabilib pa rin ang kanyang mga nakamtan bilang isang babae, isang asawa, isang ina, at pangulo ng bansa.

Ang kaganapan na tinutukoy ko sa aking huling paskil na may temang pulitika ay nangyari sa aking kaibigang nagtatrabaho sa ibang bansa. Nagkataong siya at ang kanyang banyaga ring kaibigan ay namamasyal nung may demonstrasyon na natampok sa mga pandaigdigang lathalain at telebisyon. Sila ay may dalang mga camera kaya’t nanguha sila ng mga litrato.

Makaraan ng dalawang linggo, sila ay dinampot ng militar. Walang kasong ihinabla ngunit kinumpisa ang kanyang camera at binura ang mga kuha nung demonstrasyon at sinabihang huwag ikuwento ang ginawa sa kanila kahit kanino, lalung-lalo na sa nagbabalita. Pinakawalan ang aking kaibigan ngunit ang kanyang kasama na mula sa isang bansa sa Europa ay nakapiit pa rin hanggang ngayon. O di ba nakakatakot?

Dun ako sa bansang yun tutungo sa mga darating na araw upang pansamantalang manirahan at magtrabaho. Yun ang magaganap. Nyahaha.

Babalitaan ko kayo sa mga susunod na pangyayari. Susubukan kong lumayo sa gulo sa abot ng aking makakaya, pangako!

DoLE Secretary’s Approval Required for Foreign Employer Direct Hires

2 Feb

This is a good illustration of consequences where Policies are put into place by people in authority WITHOUT DOING THEIR FREAKING HOMEWORK

The policy guidelines issued by the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA) underMemorandum Circular No. 4 took effect on January 15. It basically imposes qualifications and restrictions for Foreign Employers hiring Filipino workers without going through the POEA for processing of job orders and contracts, putting them at the mercy of recruitment agencies and discrimination from Foreign Employers.

The latest on this:

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Now, yes, those are on the embassies, but there is irreparable damage as not all Foreign Companies are aware of this amendment.

Off with their heads!  Harharhar.

Now, what can we do as individuals here to solve this?  I invite you to sign this online petition to send the message to these authorities that what they did AIN’T HELPING and is aggravating the situation.

Cheers.

Celebrating NATIONAL HEROES DAY Today

30 Nov

The events of yesterday’s activity, that will now be known as the Military Check-In, will definitely leave a mark to the current generation.  I have not experienced a curfew in my lifetime and I recall my parents’ stories about the their curfew then.

Obviously:

1.  The Filipino’s reputation for installing 2 new presidents through people power has no heart on being present for this activity;
2.  This activity will welcome other similar ones in the future cannoof (?????, what was that?), should the current president step down;
3.  Trillanes, et al, are very much aware of the consequences of their actions but knowing that, they proceeded – this means there must be sot and will never succeed because there is no clear direction on where and how the nation will be taken care mething terribly wrong with the government right now;
4.  The country’s economy does not benefit from this at all;
5.  The lack of participation or even awareness from the youth of today is a clear indicator of how the future generation cares for the nation – which worries me

If I were one of the national heroes from the past – I’d be turning from my grave.

Tax Season

15 Apr

Moving from http://lodrose.tripod.com/opinyon.htm

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It’s tax season again! Did you pay your taxes, or do you pay taxes?

Why should we? What’s taxes for? To line the pockets of our corrupt/inutile government officials? To pay for the airplane fares of our travelling President(s)? Or for whatever cause the Budget Department would allot?

Via Microsoft Word, I learned that words that could replace tax are BURDEN, DUTY, RESPONSIBILITY. Such strong words, but again, why is this burden placed upon us?

I am probably biased with this as it has become almost second nature for me to suspect the government’s judgment in dealing with money. Not because of current events which would back up this idea. Though I think it’s not the government actually but more of the people running it.

The BIR claims these taxes are for the people. See the MRT, the flyovers, and the so-called projects of the government, local or national? These, they claim, is where our taxes go. Then how come when we see these “projects” being built, it has a sign that says “this FACILITY is brought to you by the “honorable” government official. YOU should be thankful.”? Sounds to me like he’s telling us that the money used to make the facility came from his frigging pocket! The nerve!

Or in some cases, the “projects” are substandard (in Filipino: kinupitan o mas cheap na gamit ang nilagay) and would have to be rebuilt again (another source of “kupit”).

Ganito na ang tono ko. You may think I’m not into paying taxes anymore. Sorry to disappoint you, pero law-abiding pa rin naman ako pagdating sa buwis. Ipokrita ba? Nde ah. Kse naman it’s automatically deducted from my kakarampot salary eh. Kainis nga.

Pero kahit ganito ang tono ko, I am still hoping, HOPING, that somehow the taxes that we pay do return to us in terms of real benefits. Yung walang naaapi, walang agrabyado, walang mahirap.

Ha? E di komunista na pag ganon! Ayoko naman yata. Balita ko parang mas grabe pag komunista. Walang mahirap at walang mayaman. Grabe!

E papaano naman tayo mang-iinggit ng kapwa kung pare-pareho tayo ng estado sa buhay? And what would our reason for striving if things are like that? Nde rin exciting no?

Ugh, whatever.

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