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‘Justice’ gone to the mob EDITORIAL 11/24/2010

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

‘Justice’ gone to the mob

EDITORIAL
Click to enlarge
11/24/2010
Demands of justice through a swift trial in the Maguindanao massacre case being made by several media groups as well as Palace occupants who want to score media points, are useless, as the court system in this country cannot function with speed.

Unless we change the way Philippine courts operate, there can never be a swift trial, mainly because we have not adopted the style of a continuous trial for the accused, unlike in the United States which system calls for a continuous trial.

Not even having a special court, which borders on the unconstitutional, but is being sought by other media groups, will provide and guarantee a quick trial, even if the Constitution guarantees a speedy trial for the accused, as legal moves and other motions, which are part of the court trial system, can be legally resorted to — and are part of due process accorded the accused.

Especially in the case of the Maguindanao massacre, the trial is expected to take a lot longer, since there are some 200 accused and worse, witnesses for both the prosecution and the defense number in hundreds.

Those demanding both a live telecast of the trial, as well as a special court to try the accused, plus even a disbarment of the Ampatuans’ counsel, Sigfrid Fortun, are hardly into seeking justice through democratic methods. What they want is blood and a quick conviction of the Ampatuans and their henchmen..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101124com1.html

Wrong sense of justice FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 11/24/2010

Wrong sense of justice

FRONTLINE
Ninez Cacho-Olivares
11/24/2010
Noynoy Aquino is really something else when it comes to his treatment of Supreme Court justices, especially the Chief Justice whom he clearly dislikes.

Last Nov. 22, he wrote Chief Justice Renato Corona a letter asking him to allow the live media coverage of the Maguindanao massacre hearings, with the note stating that a live media coverage would not only be a comfort to the relatives of the massacre victims, but that this would show the world that“justice is taking its proper course.”

His note to Corona added: “You and I, and the respective independent branches of government we head, are duty-bound to uphold the Constitution and our laws. We are all bound to ensure that justice is done and her interests served. Furthermore, we need to make people aware of, and convinced that, justice is being done and her interest served. This can be done by making the trial of important and sensational cases such as the Maguindanao massacre case, public.”

He also said that the televised hearing would be educational for the rest of the people to find out what had actually transpired, the reasons behind the atrocity, and what steps should be done to prevent the same from happening again..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101124com2.html

Oklahoma hospital invokes Native American healing arts FEATURE 11/24/2010

Oklahoma hospital invokes Native American healing arts

FEATURE

11/24/2010
ADA — Nestled amid green fields and stream-filled woodlands, a new hospital opened by the Chickasaw Nation blends sacred Native American healing traditions with cutting-edge medicine.

It is one of a growing number of medical centers in the United States that recognize healing is about more than just drugs and IV drips.

Instead, they take an approach based on the belief that patients can recover more quickly when their cultural and spiritual beliefs are accommodated.

“Although we rely on conventional medicine, there are still folks who believe that healing is not just for your physical body... it’s for your spirit as well,” said Bill Anoatubby, governor of the Chickasaw nation that numbers more than 49,000 citizens.

Chickasaw traditions include deep ties to nature and family, so the Chickasaw Nation Medical Center was designed to provide a peaceful environment with space for healing ceremonies and plenty of visitors..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101124com3.html

What’s wrong with Wow!? HE SAYS Aldrin Cardon 11/24/2010

What’s wrong with Wow!?

HE SAYS
Aldrin Cardon
11/24/2010
I could not see anything wrong with it. Except that government seemed to have lost interest in extending its life, so that it could craft a new animal — one which could suit the new boss’ ass, but the people found it wanting, and smacking of plagiarism, a case no longer confined to the desks of the justices, but in the four walls of government’s tourism office as well.

Wow Philippines! was so effective a slogan then, even local tourism received a boost. Case in point was the Intramuros, walled city of old Manila, whose dark and lonely corners were given life by Dick Gordon, who did not have to copy his program from, say Poland, but developed his own, until he sought a higher calling and withdrawing from it a defeated man, and whose contributions to tourism is now being mangled by copycats and wannabes.

But why copy elsewhere when there is an abundance of ideas back home?

Tourism Secretary Alberto Lim would not admit to plagiarizing another country’s slogan, but would later apologize for pushing a “half-baked” program, one that Sen. Francis Escudero brands as haphazardly thought of, and questioned its timing, as I came to liken it as one meant to fix a working system.

But it has become a dangerous political habit of Pinoys, that of changing/ renaming/ renewing programs whenever a change in leadership occurs. We’ve seen it happen many times, and the latest tourism brouhaha is no different..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101124com4.html

From Wow to Pow SHE SAYS Dinah S. Ventura 11/24/2010

From Wow to Pow

SHE SAYS
Dinah S. Ventura
11/24/2010
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Thus goes the adage, and the Department of Tourism (DoT) take note.

On Nov. 21, Sunday, a week after its big unveiling, the DoT announced that it is shelving the Pilipinas Kay Ganda concept.

Its reason: “Majority of the stakeholders and general public do not support this concept. The message has been received. Past brand conceptualization efforts took many months to develop. We were impatient and wanted to jumpstart our program. That was a mistake.”

Its plans: “The DoT will continue its search for an acceptable brand through a broad-basedconsultation. A committee comprised of experts from various relevant sectors will be formed to shortlist brands suggested by the public. The brands in the final list will be subjected to market tests and focus group discussions to select the final brand.

It’s nice to know that the government agency is open to suggestion, although one cannot help thinking of the time and resources that had only been wasted on a weak or rushed concept that went pffffftttt..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101124com5.html

The painstaking search for Spain’s Franco-era missing focus 11/24/2010

The painstaking search for Spain’s Franco-era missing

focus

11/24/2010
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Thus goes the adage, and the Department of Tourism (DoT) take note.

On Nov. 21, Sunday, a week after its big unveiling, the DoT announced that it is shelving the Pilipinas Kay Ganda concept.

Its reason: “Majority of the stakeholders and general public do not support this concept. The message has been received. Past brand conceptualization efforts took many months to develop. We were impatient and wanted to jumpstart our program. That was a mistake.”

Its plans: “The DoT will continue its search for an acceptable brand through a broad-basedconsultation. A committee comprised of experts from various relevant sectors will be formed to shortlist brands suggested by the public. The brands in the final list will be subjected to market tests and focus group discussions to select the final brand.

It’s nice to know that the government.... MORE
SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101124com6.html

7,100 Smisles COMMENT By Orlando Roncesvalles 11/24/2010

7,100 Smisles

COMMENT

By Orlando Roncesvalles 11/24/2010
How to get a tourism slogan is not straightforward. Indeed, it’s the other way around. The slogan gets to you. But how?

Wow Philippines never wowed (maybe it bow-wowed), although that’s just my opinion. Pilipinas Kay Ganda has been officially orphaned, but there seems nothing wrong with its English version, Philippines the Beautiful, other than that it is borrowed from the Americans.

We need a process of sorts, but not one based on unwieldy “focus groups” where the blind can end up leading the blind, or on voting by web decibel levels, which is digital mob rule. Perhaps the trick is to consider how the good slogans “arrived.”

At one level a slogan gets to you because it’s “already there.” This is particularly true of America the Beautiful or Land of the Free.

At another level, it gets you when you see it, serendipity being what it is. Singapore was many things groping for a theme: It was a trade and financial center, a mixture of races, a small city-state, an Asian Tiger, a clean place with drastic rules, etc. Those ingredients combine well into Uniquely Singapore. Another example of serendipity is Belize, a country that like the Philippines promotes eco-tourism. It has Belize — Mother Nature’s Best Kept Secret..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101124com7.html

Nuremberg exorcises Nazi ghosts with new exhibit FEATURE 11/24/2010

Nuremberg exorcises Nazi ghosts with new exhibit

FEATURE

11/24/2010
NUREMBERG — The German city of Nuremberg was associated like no other with the Nazis. It was here that they created the main race laws against Jews and where their enormous party rallies took place.

But once World War II was over, the southern city was also where the Allies decided to put on trial the Fuehrer’s surviving henchmen, an event marked at the weekend, exactly 65 years on, with the opening of a new exhibit.

“Better late than never,” Hans-Christian Taeubrich, the head of a documentation center opened in 2001 on the site of the immense Nazi rally grounds and a co-organizer of the new exhibit, told AFP.

The new exhibit is located in the attic above courtroom 600 where 21 top Nazis including Hermann Goering and Rudolf Hess went on trial on Nov. 20, 1945, in full view of the world’s, and Germany’s, media.

The courtroom is still in use but when not, members of the public can still enter, and visitors to the new exhibit can peek through small windows and see where the historic events of 1945-6 unfolded..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101124com8.html

Aquino won’t disband militias despite abuses 11/24/2010

Aquino won’t disband militias despite abuses

11/24/2010
President Aquino claims he does not want a repeat of the gory Maguindanao massacre and has even asked the Supreme Court (SC) for a live televised trial so the nation can learn from past mistakes and not commit them again.

Yet Aquino rejected calls yesterday to disband state-funded militias such as the one allegedly used by a powerful family to carry out the country’s worst political massacre.

To this day, Aquino has not made public the Zeñarosa report on the country’s private armies, with even the militia serving as politicians’ private armies.

Human rights watchdogs say Aquino, who took office on June 30 this year, must also address the bigger picture of abolishing all private armies run by politicians across the country.

The government still funds and arms some of these militias to supplement the under-resourced military, and critics say Aquino has either been unwilling or unable to disband the militias..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101124hed1.html

Foreign gov’ts call for swift, just closure of massacre case By Michaela P. del Callar and Aytch S. de la Cruz 11/24/2010

Foreign gov’ts call for swift, just closure of massacre case

By Michaela P. del Callar and Aytch S. de la Cruz 11/24/2010

The governments of Australia and Canada yesterday joined the United Kingdom in urging President Aquino to ensure a just and swift conclusion to the Maguindanao massacre case wherein 57 persons, mostly women and journalists, were brutally slain on Nov. 23 last year.

Australian Ambassador Rod Smith said he welcomes the efforts of the Aquino administration to bring the perpetrators to justice, but stressed that a “credible and expeditious” conduct of the trial will be critical in demonstrating the Philippines’ commitment to protecting human rights and upholding the rule of law.

“Australians join with our Filipino friends in recalling with horror the brutal murder of innocent civilians and journalists in the Maguindanao massacre. We again extend our sympathies to the victims’ families as they mourn their loss and seek justice,” Smith said.

Canadian Ambassador Christopher Thornley called for the rule of law to prevail and for those responsible to be brought to justice.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101124hed2.html

60K Pinoys affected by Nokor-Sokor shelling tension By Michaela P. del Callar 11/24/2010

60K Pinoys affected by Nokor-Sokor shelling tension

By Michaela P. del Callar 11/24/2010
Around 60,000 Filipino workers in South Korea will be affected once the ongoing tension in the Korean Peninsula escalates into a full-blown conflict.

North Korea and South Korea yesterday traded artillery fire, killing at least one South Korean soldier and injuring 15 others. Among the casualties were two civilians and 13 South Korean military personnel.

At least 200 rounds of artillery hit an inhabited South Korean island in the Yellow Sea after the North started firing around 2:30 p.m. local time, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency said. South Korea’s military responded with 80 rounds of artillery and deployed fighter jets to counter the fire, the report said.

The Philippine Embassy in Seoul is closely monitoring developments in the South Korea following the recent exchange of artillery fire in the west sea border, Foreign Affairs spokesman Eduardo Malaya said.

“The Embassy has contacted Filipino community residents near the area of conflict and advised them to keep abreast of developments, keep communication lines open and contact the embassy hotline immediately in case of need,” Malaya said..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101124hed3.html

Senate scraps House’s overseeing CCT spending By Angie M. Rosales 11/24/2010

Senate scraps House’s overseeing CCT spending

By Angie M. Rosales 11/24/2010

The House of Representatives’ special provision on the national budget to oversee the implementation of President Aquino’s controversial P21.9-billion dole-out program next year has been scrapped by the Senate.

In sponsoring the proposed P1.645-trillion national expenditure program (NEP) for 2011, finance committee chairman Sen. Franklin Drilon defended the move to “delete” the provision creating a congressional oversight committee authorized to realign savings under the conditional cash transfer (CCT) program.

“The realignment is a function of the Executive branch and in my view, you cannot vest upon the oversight committee — which will be composed of members of Congress and the Executive — to realign items in the budget. That is a prerogative of the President insofar as the executive branch is concerned.

The House of Representatives, in approving on third and final reading its version of the budget bill early this month, introduced a so-called monitoring mechanism to ensure the proper disbursement of the lump-sum items that included the CCT as well as the P7.1 billion appropriation for the Enhancement Facilities Program (EFP) of the Department of Health (DoH).

Sen. Edgardo Angara, who has been consistently saying that the allocation on CCT will suffer a cut in the end, expressed doubts whether the Senate can maintain its stance on the matter, given the insistence of the lower house in keeping the said provision..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101124hed4.html

JPE to Noy: Be ready to cut US ties in VFA bid By Angie M. Rosales 11/24/2010

JPE to Noy: Be ready to cut US ties in VFA bid

By Angie M. Rosales 11/24/2010
The Aquino administration should be ready to put on the table its position on the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) that the country has with the United States if it insists on a review of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and it should be also prepared to discard the agreement or cut off relations with the US if needed, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile said yesterday as he indicated that Aquino might be entering a complex problem with the planned review of the agreement.

“If you’re going to review the VFA as you are now suggesting, the question that must be answered first: What is our capability? Can we do it alone in this world if we’re going to cut off our relationship with the US? I say relationship because the VFA is simply an implementation of the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT). Without the MDT, you do not have the VFA. We have to go back to the MDT. Are we ready to really discard the MDT?” the most senior member of the upper chamber commented before the bicameral panel.

The VFA, which provides for, among others, new defense technologies and joint military exercises with the US Armed Forces, is an extension of the MDT.

The MDT, a pact sealed 1951 dictated that both nations would support each other if either the Philippines or the US were to be attacked by an external party..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101124hed5.html

Bishops to Noy: ‘Stop opportunistic misuse of Pope’s words’ 11/24/2010

Bishops to Noy: ‘Stop opportunistic misuse of Pope’s words’

11/24/2010
Bishops yesterday cautioned Malacañang against misusing the recent statement of Pope Benedict XVI regarding the use of condoms which dovetailed with the controversial Reproductive Health bill which is now pending in the House of Representatives.

Roman Catholic Church leaders called on Malacañang to stop the “opportunistic misuse” of the papal statement.

During the weekly forum held in Intramuros yesterday (Tuesday), Manila retired Archbishop Oscar Cruz clarified that the pope did not endorse the use of condoms as a means to controlling population and not even as a moral and ideal solution to stopping the spread of AIDS.

It’s sad, he said, that there are some groups and even government officials who are distorting the pope’s statement to advance their selfish and political interests.

“When we argue let’s not take half-truths because we will lose that way. I’m sorry to disappoint people who are hoping otherwise,” Cruz said..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101124hed6.html

Solon slams ‘Morong 43-type raid’ in Bicol By Charlie V. Manalo 11/24/2010

Solon slams ‘Morong 43-type raid’ in Bicol

By Charlie V. Manalo 11/24/2010

Anakpawis Rep. Rafael Mariano yesterday condemned what he described as “Morong 43-type” raid conducted by combined troops of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) at the office shared by the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) and Karapatan in Daet, Camarines Norte last Monday.

The human rights group Karapatan reported that “held in the raid by elements of the Daet Police and the 9th Infantry Division, 902nd Infantry Brigade of the Philippine Army (PA) are four activists which include Esmeraldo “Smith” Bardon, Denver Bacolod, Mherlo Bermas and Elpidio de Luna.”

The Karapatan report stated that “troops of the 9th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army has laid siege to the city office, refusing anyone to leave and enter the premises.”

“After some time, the raiding troops supposedly were able to recover ‘explosives’ from the office during the raid,” Karapatan added..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20101124nat3.html

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