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Thrown to Basilan EDITORIAL 08/15/2010

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Thrown to Basilan



EDITORIAL
Click to enlarge
08/15/2010
It is difficult to argue that life has become harder for whistle-blower Rear Adm. Feliciano Angue who has been talking a lot lately about the illicit political affairs of military generals.

The former commander of the composite National Capital Region Command (NCRCom) force has been literally thrown to Basilan, which is the term used in the military for being fed to the dogs after displeasing a powerful figure, as he was assigned to head the Naval Forces Western Mindanao.

Western Mindanao comprises the most volatile regions in the country, including Basilan, Tawi-Tawi and Sulu, where the dreaded Abu Sayyaf group and other kidnap-for-ransom bandits operate. The area under Angue’s new command is also notorious as a smuggling gateway

The military brass have denied that Angue’s reassignment was a demotion but who are they kidding? Compare the Basilan assignment to being head of the prime military unit securing the nation’s capital..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100815com1.html


Willing to throw out all FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 08/15/2010

Willing to throw out all



FRONTLINE
Ninez Cacho-Olivares
08/15/2010
Noynoy and his boys have so rapidly become Gloria and her spokesmen’s clones.

Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda, in defending Noynoy and his Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) chief’s insistence on imposing the 12 percent expanded value added tax (eVAT) on toll fees which would have been increased tomorrow by 250 percent, claimed, in Gloria vintage fashion, that Noynoy and his administration would rather be unpopular than populist.

Well, the way Noynoy and his boys are going about things, it is probable that he will become very, very unpopular and wrong, at the same time, in less than a year in Malacañang, although Noynoy may still have the full support of and given praise by, his business elite whom he favors and naturally, his fawning yellows. Still, they hardly represent the Filipino people.

Lacierda also placed the blame on Gloria and her administration for this tax imposition, saying that she had twice come up with a memorandum circular (MC) imposing this eVAT on toll fares, but failed to enforce it, fearing unpopularity and prefering the populist approach.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100815com2.html


China mudslides highlight cost of rapid economic growth focus 08/15/2010

China mudslides highlight cost of rapid economic growth



focus

08/15/2010
BEIJING — Mudslides devastating northwest China are a grim reminder of the high cost of the country’s breakneck economic growth — a development model experts say policymakers know must be changed.

Activists have blamed the deadly landslides in Gansu province on years of unchecked development in the mountainous region as local governments cut down trees, built roads and developed hydroelectric dams in the name of growth.
It is a scenario that has been played out across the country as authorities try to lift millions of people out of poverty and further their own careers by attracting investment and spurring growth — with scant regard to the local environment.
“The tragedy in Zhouqu is a reflection of the challenges and risks economic growth brings to poor regions,” Li Yan, climate change and energy campaigner for Greenpeace China, told AFP..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100815com3.html


Justice Del Castillo’s white knight BLURBAL THRUSTS Louie Logarta 08/15/2010

Justice Del Castillo’s white knight



BLURBAL THRUSTS
Louie Logarta
08/15/2010
The Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (Ceza) has been omitted by the Commission on Audit (CoA), for reasons only it can fathom, from its list of government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs) that was released recently to the public.

The Ceza, which supervises the operations of the Cagayan Special Economic Zone located in Port Irene, Santa Ana, Cagayan, functions in the exact same manner as, let’s say, the Clark Development Corp. (CDC) which oversees activities in the Clark Special Economic Zone inside the old Clark Air Base in Pampanga or the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) in the former Subic Naval Base in Olongapo, Zambales.

Of late, nationwide attention has been focused on the SBMA and CDC after it was revealed (again based on CoA data) that officials working for them were among the highest paid in government with fantabulous salaries in 2009.
SBMA Chairman Armand Arreza is supposed to have netted P26.8 million, while CDC president Benny Ricafort came away with P14.6 million.

Several questionable omissions in the CoA’s list of highest-paid government officials in 2009 included those of Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) Chairman Efraim Genuino who is alleged to have had at his disposal intelligence funds, that aren’t subjected to normal audit strictures, amounting to around P500 million, as well as some subordinates like former Pagcor president Butch Francisco and members of the Pagcor board..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100815com4.html


Let go C.R.O.S.S.R.O.A.D.S Jonathan De la Cruz 08/15/2010

Let go



C.R.O.S.S.R.O.A.D.S
Jonathan De la Cruz
08/15/2010
Of course, it is easier said than done. I mean letting go of Hacienda Luisita the traditional way — actually distributing the land to accredited farmer beneficiaries. After all, If then President Cory Aquino whose centerpiece program in 1986 was “land for the landless” could not do it in her time how can we expect her son, P-Noy, to do it this time around given all the intervening developments since? The Cojuangco-Aquino heirs have probably tripled since (P-Noy says his family’s part of the hacienda at this time would be less than 5 percent), a good part of the land has been used for other purposes (we understand only about 4,000 plus hectares of the original 6,000 something are available for distribution) and, perhaps more ominously, the record of the CARPed lands remain spotty at best. We still have to get the actual score on the CARPed areas but we are told that, unlike in China, Taiwan and Japan, to name just three of the more successful ones, our agrarian reform program never really reached its full potential as a tool of economic development and social justice. In fine, instead of banishing the fears and dire predictions of the oppositors, the CARP’s record over the past 24 years gave them the traction and the experiential support to bolster their arguments. The promised “land for the landless” plan has fallen short of expectations. Which is why Congress passed the CARPer Law last year in the hope of breathing fresh air to this faltering social justice and economic development platform — a hope which President Aquino can nurse to fruition by taking his mother’s promised land for the landless to its logical conclusion at least as far as Hacienda Luisita is concerned.
.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100815com5.html




Mother Earth VIEWPOINTS Archbishop Oscar V. Cruz 08/15/2010

Mother Earth



VIEWPOINTS
Archbishop Oscar V. Cruz
08/15/2010
A mother is a both a tender and sturdy person, a delicate yet resourceful lady, a loving and at the same time a woman of discipline.

The mere mention of the word “Mother” immediately brings to mind someone who has brought children to the world, which has nurtured and cared for them as youngsters, and even continues to follow them up with her maternal concern and motherly attention. 

She would rather go hungry and become sick, undergo pain and suffering in place of her children. These can forget, hurt and even abandon her — but remember and worry about them, wish them well and safe, these she does and continues so doing until she no longer can on account of ultimate demise.

And here is “Mother Earth” that is delicate in her situation but remains strong in her constitution that continues to secure and serve humanity that continuously tries to feed and house men, women and children — one generation after another. These frequently hurt and pain her with their indifference and the pursuit of their own selfish interests. 

More often than not, they even forgot about her good and even actually do not care at all about her welfare. The truth is that the more humanity becomes professionally able and technically prepared, the less they mind and care for her — their own loving and caring Mother Earth..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100815com6.html


‘Let’s move on’ TABLETS OF STONE Larry Faraon, OP 08/15/2010

‘Let’s move on’



TABLETS OF STONE
Larry Faraon, OP
08/15/2010
Just what does Rep. Manny Pacquiao mean by “Let’s move on,” when he manifested or in short interjected between the anti- and pro-Arroyo speeches at the House floor. Of course, there was a thundering applause from the hall not because it was a solomonic counsel from a neophyte but because the honorables thought it was cute — coming from a popular boxing icon. If he means that we have to forget and forgo the past sins of the Arroyo administration and bury their hachets on each other’s back, then the applause is cynical and the remarks moronic.

If Representative Pacquiao feels uneasy or uncomfortable with his colleagues throwing “punches” or balls of fire on his former coddler, the honorable gentle lady from Pampanga, then either he is in the wrong place or his congressional orientation wanting.

A boxer’s canvass is so totally different from the carpets and podiums of the session halls — Pacquiao would soon realize. Politics and governance are unlike boxing matches where a winner would magnanimously approach the loser’s corner and offer embraces despite bloodied and mangled faces! But I won’t be surprised if one day, the boxing icon would be so pissed off that he would challenge a colleague to settle things outside the halls of Congress at the boxing arena!

However, soon the people’s champ will adopt and integrate himself into the congressional culture of endless privilege speeches, interpellations, interventions, debates, discussions, tirades, insults, grandstanding and invectives, among others. And the normal usual excuse, “in aid of legislation,” precisely the valid point of Rep. JV Ejercito in his privilege speech, in hitting the EO 464..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100815com7.html


Noynoy in hacienda to defuse Luisita flap By Aytch S. de la Cruz 08/15/2010

PALACE SAYS AQUINO TO SEEK INFO NOT TO INTERVENE

Noynoy in hacienda to defuse Luisita flap


By Aytch S. de la Cruz
08/15/2010
President Aquino has been in the Hacienda Luisita estate in Tarlac since early morning yesterday in what many believe as a fireman mission to douse what is turning out to be the first big crisis that his nascent administration is facing, which is the allegations of bribery by members of his landed family on farm workers to silence them on their demand for land distribution. 

Aquino, who is officially on vacation in the vast sugar estate, is expected to speak with his relatives who own the biggest share of assets in the Hacienda Luisita Inc. (HLI) in relation to the controversial compromise agreement they signed with the HLI farm beneficiaries who are queueing for doleouts lately and whose situation he also plans to check but these will be done “not on a formal basis,” according to his spokesman, Edwin Lacierda.

Lacierda sent these broad hints in response to queries sent by the Tribune yesterday on whether the President has these particular agenda in his mind when he decided to spend his Saturday at the Hacienda Luisita farmlands in Tarlac province.

Col. Ramon Dizon, chief of the Presidential Security Guard (PSG), confirmed in a phone interview that Aquino was at Luisita yesterday but only to take a vacation there, saying that his visit is not in any way related to the issues that hound the HLI lately.

Lacierda echoed this information shared by Dizon, saying that “the President is careful in treading the fine line of being informed and meddling,” especially since the compromise agreement issue is now being handled by the Supreme Court (SC)..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100815hed1.html


Palace advice to solons on toll row: ‘Amend VAT law’ By Aytch S. de la Cruz 08/15/2010

Palace advice to solons on toll row: ‘Amend VAT law’


By Aytch S. de la Cruz
08/15/2010
Amending the value added tax (VAT) law is the only recourse to stop Malacañang from pursuing the enforcement of the imposition of the 12-percent VAT on tolls nationwide as part of its additional revenue generation measures, the Palace said yesterday after the Supreme Court (SC) issued lat Friday an order to withhold its implementation along with the 300 percent increase in the South Luzon Expressway (Slex) fees.
Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said changes in the law is the only remedy to comply with the lawmakers’ advice for President Aquino to carefully pore over the VAT law which did not include tollway fees among those to be charged with the VAT.
“If the legislative does not agree with the executive branch, I guess they can, once and for all, amend the law (on VAT) — that would be better,” he said.
Lacierda insisted that their intention to impose this 12-percent VAT on toll does not violate any tax laws insofar as their
interpretation of the VAT law is concerned, citing as well as the tax reform code which supposedly allows the government to enforce taxes on toll operators.
He, nonetheless, reiterated that they would abide by the Supreme Court’s (SC) temporary restraining order (TRO) which compelled the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to postpone its intended implementation of the 12-percent VAT on toll tomorrow and will just defend their stand on this particular issue in the said forum..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100815hed2.html


Mancao cries ‘harassment’ after Gatdula takes NBI rein By Pat C. Santos 08/15/2010

Mancao cries ‘harassment’ after Gatdula takes NBI rein


By Pat C. Santos
08/15/2010
State witness in the double murder case of publicist Salvador “Bubby” Dacer and his driver, Emmanuel Corbito, former Senior Supt. Cesar Mancao III, complained yesterday of serious harassment by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) which placed him under detention despite being under the Department of Justice’s (DoJ) Witness Protection Program, his lawyer said yesterday.

In a statement issued to media yesterday, Ferdinand Topacio, counsel for Mancao, denounced an attempt to detain his client at the NBI compound Friday night.

“(That is) contrary to the terms and conditions of the Witness Protection Program signed by my client with the Department of Justice when he entered the program last year.” Topacio said in a statement.

Mancao’s testimonies were largely the basis of the arrest order on fugitive Sen. Panfilo Lacson, who he pinpointed as the mastermind in the double murder that happened way back in November 2000.

Topacio attributed the change in the NBI’s treatment of Mancao started when the NBI transferred leadership to “people closely identified with Lacson.”... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100815hed3.html


No need to replace legal team — Palace By Aytch S. de la Cruz 08/15/2010

No need to replace legal team — Palace


By Aytch S. de la Cruz
08/15/2010
Employing better and wiser legal counsels is no longer necessary even as President Aquino’s first wave of presidential issuances and executive orders (EOs) has met loud criticisms to the extent that it has spawned fresh political firestorms in the country, Malacañang yesterday said.

According to presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda, Aquino stands firm on his belief that he has very competent lawyers in his legal team who give him sound legal advice before coming up with his presidential orders hence there is no need to replace them.

Aquino’s legal team is headed by Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Eduardo de Mesa who is often in close coordination with Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. in crafting the memorandum circulars and EOs released so far by Malacañang.

Lacierda relayed that in the future orders to be released by the President, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima will be joining the presidential legal team perhaps to reduce, if not totally get rid of, the same criticisms that their issuances have attracted lately..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100815hed4.html


Miriam hails Noy’s first SC appointment 08/15/2010

Miriam hails Noy’s first SC appointment


08/15/2010
Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago yesterday welcomed the appointment of Maria Lourdes Sereno as new justice of the Supreme Court even as she said President Aquino’s first appointee to the high tribunal will likely be the first female chief justice in the future.

“She is brilliant. It is fortuitous that she was appointed very young. She will earn the necessary seniority and eventually become the first female chief justice of the Philippine Supreme Court,” Santiago, in a statement, added.

The senator also hailed Aquino for making Sereno his first appointee to the Supreme Court..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100815hed5.html


Noynoy in hacienda to defuse Luisita flap By Aytch S. de la Cruz 08/15/2010

PALACE SAYS AQUINO TO SEEK INFO NOT TO INTERVENE

Noynoy in hacienda to defuse Luisita flap


By Aytch S. de la Cruz
08/15/2010
President Aquino has been in the Hacienda Luisita estate in Tarlac since early morning yesterday in what many believe as a fireman mission to douse what is turning out to be the first big crisis that his nascent administration is facing, which is the allegations of bribery by members of his landed family on farm workers to silence them on their demand for land distribution. 

Aquino, who is officially on vacation in the vast sugar estate, is expected to speak with his relatives who own the biggest share of assets in the Hacienda Luisita Inc. (HLI) in relation to the controversial compromise agreement they signed with the HLI farm beneficiaries who are queueing for doleouts lately and whose situation he also plans to check but these will be done “not on a formal basis,” according to his spokesman, Edwin Lacierda.

Lacierda sent these broad hints in response to queries sent by the Tribune yesterday on whether the President has these particular agenda in his mind when he decided to spend his Saturday at the Hacienda Luisita farmlands in Tarlac province.

Col. Ramon Dizon, chief of the Presidential Security Guard (PSG), confirmed in a phone interview that Aquino was at Luisita yesterday but only to take a vacation there, saying that his visit is not in any way related to the issues that hound the HLI lately..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100815hed1.html


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