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The Daily Tribune

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Dead end EDITORIAL 10/05/2010

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Dead end

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Civil disobedience, say the Catholic bishops, is an option the Church leaders would be taking, should Malacañang go ahead with its plan of making available contraceptives.

This is all bravura on the part of the bishops, because they certainly know that they can’t implement this clear threat, even as they claim to have successfully called for civil disobedience in 1986, leading to the ouster of then President Ferdinand Marcos.

As usual, the bishops are into deliberately portraying a different historical account, to benefit themselves.
The Church never called for civil disobedience in 1986. The political opposition did, through a boycott and refusal to pay taxes to the government, both of which calls were a failure, if truth must be told. The boycott of products identified with the Marcos regime certainly was no success, although the political opposition then claimed this to have been a huge success. As for the non-payment of taxes which the business groups claimed to have supported, this too was a failure, since business was so scared of not remitting the withheld income tax of employees..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101005com1.html

A non-issue? FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 10/05/2010

A non-issue?

Ninez Cacho-Olivares
Malacañang mouthpieces yesterday reportedly said that it is a non-issue, as far as Noynoy Aquino is concerned, whether he gets a passing or failing mark for his 100 days in office performance.

That’s by far the most arrogant statement made by Aquino, through his mouthpieces.
Fail or pass does not matter to Noynoy, when a failing mark given by his constituents means that he is being seen as a most incompetent president who does not deserve to lead the nation? And he doesn’t care?

But then again, Noynoy and his Palace team already know by now that they haven’t done anything and wasted their 100 days, as his mouthpieces have also earlier stated that which is important is that they are on the right track. Right track to where? More non-performance?.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101005com2.html

Mexican drug war crimes go live on the Internet focus 10/05/2010

Mexican drug war crimes go live on the Internet


MEXICO CITY — In the midst of the brutal drug trafficking war encroaching on their lives, thousands of Mexicans every morning check social network Web sites to see if they will encounter any unpleasant surprises on the way to work or school.

But they are not the only ones.

While average citizens go online to let others know where in their neighborhood a body has been uncovered or if they can expect disruptions from cartels or the Mexican military, the drug gangs themselves also use the tools to manipulate public opinion by making threats and warnings.

The spread of vital information ahead of the daily commute, via social networking technology and sites like Facebook and Twitter, is especially useful in the country’s north, near the US border, which has become ground zero for the country’s drug war.

More than 28,000 persons are believed to have been killed in drug cartel-related violence in Mexico in the last four years, when President Felipe Calderon launched a military crackdown, making residents increasingly desperate for ways to avoid the bloodshed..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101005com3.html

Bald men or battleships? AN OUTSIDERS VIEW Ken Fuller 10/05/2010

Bald men or battleships?

Ken Fuller
An interesting – and, despite its serious content, amusing — duel has developed between Rigoberto Tiglao and Dr. Bernardo Villegas in the pages of the Inquirer. Initially, rather than either mentioning the other’s name, they were like two battleships exchanging salvos from either side of the horizon.

Tiglao opened the exchange on Aug. 12 with a column entitled “There are 100 million of us now” in which he complained: “It is amazing how a few top-notch economists, particularly those belonging to the Vatican’s vanguard, Opus Dei, can still argue in this day and age that there is no connection between population growth rates and economic well-being.”

Economist? Opus Dei? Who fits that description?

On Sept. 25, Villegas, (economist and Opus Dei member) fired off “The Philippine population is not exploding.” This contained a reference to “ignorant journalists or commentators who talk about an exploding population.” Now who could that possibly be?.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101005com4.html

Ladysmith Black Mambazo still strong, 50 years on FEATURE 10/05/2010

Ladysmith Black Mambazo still strong, 50 years on


PRETORIA — As a young black man in apartheid South Africa, Joseph Shabalala dreamed of forming a Zulu capella choir whose music could change the world.

Fifty years later, Ladysmith Black Mambazo have won three Grammys, recorded with giants like Paul Simon and Stevie Wonder, and performed at the closing of the World Cup in July.

But as the group turns 50, they are celebrating with a “Back to eKasi” tour, translated roughly as “Back to the ‘Hood,’” performing through the townships whose support launched them to international fame.

Shabalala first brought the choir together on a farm near the town of Ladysmith. They started out singing at weddings, then took to the airwaves in radio singing contests, where they were eventually banned — because they won every time.

“It is a good way to go back with people. They show up, that means they love you,” Shabalala said before a concert in Atteridgeville, a township outside Pretoria..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101005com5.html

Saudi women fight for control of their marital fate FEATURE 10/05/2010

Saudi women fight for control of their marital fate


RIYADH — Women in Saudi Arabia are fighting back against tribal traditions that make them hostage to the whims of their fathers and male guardians who alone can decide who their future husbands will be.

Faced with a lifetime of being forced to remain single, an increasing number of Saudi women, many of them university graduates with good jobs, are going to court to dispute their fathers’ refusal to sign off on their marriages.

In July, a Medina court rejected a 42-year-old doctor’s petition to override her father and brothers’ refusal to allow her marriage to a surgeon she works with, because he did not belong to their tribe.

The court ruled that the father was justified, and that she was not being obedient by trying to marry someone outside the clan.

“Unfortunately we have a strange paradox in society, where young girls only 10 years old can be married, but an adult woman can be prevented from marrying for illogical reasons,” Suhaila Zainal Abidin of the National Society for Human Rights told AFP..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101005com6.html

Dinosaur trove spills more secrets focus 10/05/2010

Dinosaur trove spills more secrets


CUENCA — Decades after a mechanical pine-tree digger first unearthed it, an extraordinary trove of dinosaur fossils in central Spain is revealing its secrets.
When the digging machine cut a furrow to plant pines in the arid soil near the medieval town of Cuenca in the 1980s, it sliced through more than 100 million years to one of Europe’s richest seams of fossils.

It was a fluke that opened the way to a series of discoveries about the creatures that walked our planet in the Cretaceous period, between 65 and 145 million years ago.

The latest secret: A strange hump-backed dinosaur, fossilized after it had devored its prey about 125 million years ago.

Six meters (20 feet) long from snout to tail tip, the dinosaur had jaws and small, clawed forelimbs, a curved spine and small hump.

Pepito, as the creature has been nicknamed by the team from Autonomous University of Madrid who dug it out, was a fast and powerful hunter.

And it had apparently eaten recently. The unique, nearly complete fossil contained the remnants of its prey in the abdominal cavity..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101005com7.html

Low marks for 100 days a non-issue—Noy By Aytch S. dela Cruz and Angie M. Rosales 10/05/2010

Low marks for 100 days a non-issue—Noy

By Aytch S. dela Cruz and Angie M. Rosales 10/05/2010

President Aquino barely made it in getting a passing grade, in his first 100 days as the country’s 15th president, senators said yesterday when asked for an assessment on his performance.

His critics, however, gave Aquino a failing mark, while Aquino himself shrugged all these off, saying that giving him a failing or passing mark is a non-issue to him.

In giving Aquino a rating for his 100 day performance, with 10 being the highest grade, most senators gave this answer: Between six to seven.

His allies in the Senate, however, were quick to defend Aquino, citing the difficulties he had inherited from the previous administration.

“You know he has done well but the cards were stacked against his administration. Talk about midnight appointees, the bureaucracy....MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101005hed1.html

Collusion cited in DND-BAC’s P4-billion PAF-Navy choppers deal deferment By Mario J. Mallari 10/05/2010

P4-billion PAF-Navy choppers deal deferment

By Mario J. Mallari 10/05/2010

The Department of National Defense-Bids and Awards Committee (DND-BAC) yesterday announced the deferment of the acquisition of P4 billion worth of Air Force and Navy helicopters, citing reports of collusion between the suppliers and members of the technical working group.

DND-BAC chairman Assistant Secretary Ernesto Boac made the announcement during the committee’s meeting in the presence of members of the Defense Press Corps (DPC), taking note of previous statements made by Representatives Teddy Casiño and Tomas Osmeña and media reports.

“Here is now a memorandum of the secretary of national defense to defer the bidding of the multi-role helicopters of the Philippine Navy. Another decision is that we will further defer action on the post qualification of the multi-attack helicopters of the Philippine Air Force,” announced Boac.

The contracts in question were the seven units of attack helicopters worth P3.2 billion intended for the Air Force and P860 million worth of two multi-role helicopters for the Navy..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101005hed2.html

No timetable for US troops’ presence in RP — envoy By Michaela P. del Callar 10/05/2010

No timetable for US troops’ presence in RP — envoy

By Michaela P. del Callar 10/05/2010

The United States will agree to any Philippine government plan to review a defense treaty allowing American military presence in the country, Ambassador Harry Thomas yesterday said, but added US troops would remain as long as the government wants them to help fight continuing terror threats.

Thomas also stressed that Ame-rican troops have not engaged in local combat and that Washington has no plans to reopen US military bases in the country — both are banned by the Philippine Constitution.

Some Filipino senators have sought a review of the Visiting Forces Agreement, which the Philippine Senate ratified in 1999, eight years after the closure of US military bases in the Philippines.

The VFA came under fire when the American Embassy won custody of a US Marine accused of raping a Filipina in 2006. Left-wing groups demanded the abrogation of the VFA, prompting senators to take a second look at the treaty, particularly a provision which specifies which of the two allied countries should take custody of any soldier who would face local prosecution for any crime..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101005hed3.html

Palace folds, seeks truce with Church By Aytch S. de la Cruz 10/05/2010

Palace folds, seeks truce with Church

By Aytch S. de la Cruz 10/05/2010

A Church official yesterday said the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) is accepting a ceasefire that he said Malacañang had sought on the exchange of threatening statements over the Reproductive Health bill issue but added that silence will not mean that the Church is “foregoing a strong position” on the controversial legislative proposal seeking active government promotion of artificial contraceptives.

Fr. Melvin Castro, executive secretary of the CBCP’s Commission on Family and Life, said the CBCP is withdrawing from giving “unnecessary statements” until a formal dialog is finally held.

“We respect the request of Malacañang for a ceasefire to calm everybody… and as we wait for a face-to-face dialog with the bishops and the president,” Castro said.

The Palace, however, was in a state of flux over the supposed dialog on whether or not one was already held or if it is planning to hold one with Church leaders..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101005hed4.html

Ilocos Sur judge shot to death, SC seeks gun ban exemption 10/05/2010

Ilocos Sur judge shot to death, SC seeks gun ban exemption

Unidentified gunmen shot dead another judge in Ilocos Sur yesterday in an attack that could be related to his job, police said.

Vigan Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 20 Judge Reynaldo Lacasandile was killed at dawn in the northern town of Tagudin by two men on a motorcycle who shot him twice and sped off, Ilocos Sur police director Senior Supt. Dopale said.

Lacasandili was waiting for a ride bound for Vigan when shot at around 4:45 a.m. Monday, he added.
“This was possibly work-related. We are verifying what cases he was handling,” Dopale told reporters..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101005hed5.html

House asks SC to lift status quo ante By Charlie V. Manalo 10/05/2010

House asks SC to lift status quo ante

By Charlie V. Manalo 10/05/2010

Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr. yesterday asked the Supreme Court (SC) to lift its status quo ante order and to respect the “exclusive power” of the House of Representatives in initiating the impeachment case against Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez.

In his Motion for Leave to Intervene and Comment in Intervention Ex Abundanti Cautela, the Speaker said the status quo ante order issued by the Court “emasculates the power of the House of Representatives to exact any form of accountability” from the Ombudsman, and endows Gutierrez with “the status of an untouchable.”

The Speaker also defended the House committee on justice against allegations that it violated the constitutional provision which bars the initiation of impeachment proceedings against the same official more than once within a period of one year.

Two impeachment complaints against the Ombudsman were filed separately but they were referred to the committee on justice simultaneously..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101005hed6.html

US diplomat says South China Sea within ‘America’s interest’ By Michaela P. del Callar 10/05/2010

US diplomat says South China Sea within ‘America’s interest’

By Michaela P. del Callar 10/05/2010

The United States’ top diplomat to the Philippines yesterday said stability and unfettered access to the disputed South China Sea waters is within America’s “national interest,” saying this will ensure a freer flow of trade in the region.

Ambassador Harry Thomas called for the adoption of a strong and legally binding code of conduct, which is aimed at preventing South China Sea territorial disputes from erupting into armed conflict.

“We think that it is important for the United States to remain engaged in Asia. Asia is a huge trading partner for us and contributes so much to exports and imports to our economy. In order to have that we need freedom of navigation, we need freedom of seas and we need stability,” Thomas told foreign correspondents in a briefing.

Earlier, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called for unimpeded access to the area that China claims wholly as its own, and accused Beijing of adopting an increasingly aggressive stance off the South China Sea..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20101005nat1.html

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