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Not the pulse of the electorate EDITORIAL 04/27/2010

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Not the pulse of the electorate

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Pre-election surveys — whether Pulse Asia or the Social Weather Stations surveys — as conducted in this country, pose some kind of danger to the well-being of the nation, especially when these survey results are taken as gospel truth by the so-called survey front-runners.

Too much store is being placed on these surveys by some candidates, especially the Liberal Party presidential and vice presidential bets, who already see themselves in Malacañang — on the basis of the surveys.

The danger to the nation here is that what these surveys reflect may not necessarily be the same results of the presidential elections, given certain factors, such as party machinery and organization of a candidate or his rivals, not to mention that some shocking report may just crop up that could kill the chances of victory of even a frontrunner.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100427com1.html

Villar slide continues; Erap disputes SWS result 04/27/2010

Villar slide continues; Erap disputes SWS result


Three weeks into the national elections, Nacionalista Party (NP) standard bearer Manuel Villar Jr. continues to lose points, dropping to a preference of 26 percent to remain at second place and within striking distance of former President Joseph Estrada of the Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) at third with 17 percent, the latest BusinessWorld-Social Weather Stations (SWS) Pre-Election Survey showed.

Liberal Party (LP) bet Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III remains in the survey lead with a 38 percent pre-ference.
Administration Lakas-Kampi-CMD bet Gilberto “Gibo” Teodoro Jr. gained three points to nine percent in the survey conducted from April 16 to 19.
Estrada dismissed the results of the latest SWS survey saying it is not credible.

Estrada said that he is not inclined to believe that his rating dropped from 19 to 17 percent amid a survey commissioned by Interior and Local Governments Secretary Ronaldo Puno which allegedly showed that he has overtaken Villar in the number two spot.

“There were 6,000 respondents in the Puno survey while respondents in the SWS survey were only 1,400, the Puno survey is more credible than the SWS,” Estrada said in a chance interview at the PMP national campaign headquarters in Mandaluying City yesterday morning.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100427hed6.html

No urgency to decide on manual bid — Comelec Marie Surbano 04/27/2010

No urgency to decide on manual bid — Comelec

Marie Surbano

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) indicated yesterday that it does not feel compelled to follow a proposal for the implementation of parallel manual count in the May 10 polls but a Comelec official said the poll body needs more time to study the suggestion.

“It’s not a simple matter of just saying we want to do this and, therefore, tomorrow it will be done. Who doesn’t want an added security, who doesn’t want to have additional validation in the result? What I think is the problem in conducting manual count, is that it is a rigorous activity, it needs elements to match for it to perform well,” said Comelec spokesman James Jimenez.

Jimenez said among the things the Comelec needed to study are the ground situation in terms of making it operational, how it will impact all other Comelec activities including the release of forms and how long the teachers are going to stay on board while the manual count is ongoing, and the legal ramifications like pre-proclamation protests.... MORE 

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100427hed5.html

DQ case filed vs Vilma over ‘illegal posters’ By Marie A. Surbano 04/27/2010

Rival ex-gov Sanchez suffers heat stroke

DQ case filed vs Vilma over ‘illegal posters’

By Marie A. Surbano

A disqualification case has been filed against Batangas Gov. Vilma Santos before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) for alleged violation of the Election Code, particularly on the posting of campaign posters.

In their petition to the poll body, Lawyers Ferdinand Topacio, Gilbert Macatangay and Arth Jhun Marasigan said Santos, whose full name is Maria Rosa Vilma Tuazon Santos-Recto, has violated the campaign rules for posting oversized campaign propagandas and erecting them outside the common poster areas provided by the poll body.
“Respondent availed of and utilized different sorts of campaign propaganda and materials in promotion of her candidacy in the entire province of Batangas. Among said campaign materials and propaganda were posters, streamers, leaflets, banners, stickers and the like, with different contents, and of different materials and sizes, posted in different locations both public and private, within the province,” they said in their petition.

They also enumerated the places or areas where the huge posters or billboards were placed, such as in tollways, provincial capitol, barangay hall, among others.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20100427nat1.html

Sarangani gov survives bomb attack — PNP report 04/27/2010

Sarangani gov survives bomb attack — PNP report


A governor who is seeking re-election survived a bomb attack yesterday morning, the police reported.

Citing a police report, Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesman Chief Supt. Leonardo Espina said a bomb exploded just after the vehicle of Sarangani Gov. Miguel Dominguez and his convoy passed through the Lum Masla Bridge in Malapatan town, Sarangani province around 11:40 a.m.
The bomb was reportedly placed in a parked motorcycle.
Dominguez, the report said, had just visited the town to look into the assassination attempt on incumbent Mayor Enrique Yap, which led to the arrest of several suspects who were on board two vehicles, when the bomb attack occurred..... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20100427nat5.html

The perils of a presidential race FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 04/27/2010

The perils of a presidential race

Ninez Cacho-Olivares

Manny Villar and his Nacionalista Party candidates are perhaps, by now, fairly rattled at the continuous slide in his ratings, as he, along with Liberal Party bets Noynoy Aquino and Mar Roxas have been placing their faith in these dubious surveys.

And they are pretty dubious because the survey numbers certainly don’t jibe with the tens of thousands of supporters who come to the rallies of Erap Estrada, for SWS to pull him down some more with 2 percent in its latest survey. But then again, the SWS and the elite don’t want him to win.

Just going by the lean crowd that comes to the rallies of say, Noynoy or Villar — when his Rockatropa and Wowawee groups aren’t around, and compare their crowd to the crowds that pop up in Estrada’s rallies, which are getting bigger and bigger, one wonders just how the survey numbers are being manufactured.

But what should jar Aquino too, is the fact that his numbers have remained static for sometime. His one percent increase in the latest SWS survey really doesn’t mean he is moving at all. Then too, LP VP bet Mar Roxas has been on a slide too, with Jojo Binay getting a big chunk of Roxas’ vote. Evidently, the voters are not that firmed up in their choice of top candidates.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100427com2.html

West’s message on Afghan elections: Don’t expect too much focus 04/27/2010

West’s message on Afghan elections: Don’t expect too much



KABUL — Managing expectations has become a priority for Afghanistan’s weary Western partners as the corrupt, impoverished and war-torn country moves towards parliamentary elections later this year.

Candidates began registering last week for the poll, which is set for September 18 after it was postponed from the original May date.

“I assure the people of Afghanistan that the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) will be working day and night to ensure free, fair and just elections,” acting chief electoral officer Zakria Barakzai said as registration began.
His optimism is rare in Kabul: Afghan and Western officials alike reckon fraud will be a key element in the September elections, as it was in last August’s presidential poll, which returned Hamid Karzai for a second term.
August’s poll dealt a heavy blow to the credibility of the democratic experiment in Afghanistan, which began soon after the overthrow of the Taliban’s 1996-2001 regime in a US-led invasion.

Aware of the fall in Western public support for the war and aid effort once the scale of the last year’s fraud became clear, diplomats appear to be on a mission of pre-emptive damage control.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

  URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100427com3.html

My vote NO HOLDS BARRED Armida Siguion-Reyna 04/27/2010

My vote

Armida Siguion-Reyna

Having in the last issue explained why I was voting Joseph Estrada for president and Jojo Binay for vice president, here now is the rest of my voter’s list.

For my 12 senators, first I have the re-electionists Juan Ponce-Enrile and Jinggoy Ejercito. The playful will tease I’m going for JPE because he’s my brother, and I shall just as playfully counter, “Iboboto mo nga si Enrile, ako pa?” Yup, he’s doing rather well in the surveys, the highest ever since he started to run for office. I’m glad that people have finally realized that however he may appear to do things, his bottom line always has to do with wanting to see people happy. “Gusto ko, happy ka,” is not merely his political ad tagline but his aspiration as a public servant. Mas tutoo naman iyon, anytime, kaysa sa “Kung bad ka, lagot ka.”

He’s been Senate President since November of 2008. Senate employees, including those who don’t like him, acknowledge his fairness, how he has bonuses evenly distributed, how hard he works, how deeply he studies the papers brought before his attention, “mas masipag pa sa mga bata sa kanya.” I’m proud of him, Papa would have been prouder still.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100427com4.html

Two sides to every controversy AN OUTSIDERS VIEW Ken Fuller 04/27/2010

Two sides to every controversy

Ken Fuller

There are two sides to every controversy, and the death by hunger strike of prisoner Orlando Zapata Tamayo in Cuba in February, and the whole question of “political prisoners” in that country, are no exceptions.

Washington condemned Zapata Tamayo’s death, and on March 10 the European Parliament “strongly” condemned “the avoidable and cruel death” and deplored Cuba’s failure to release all political prisoners.” The latter refers mainly to a group arrested in 2003, their members receiving jail sentences of up to 27 years.

The condemnation by governments of the “free world” seems pretty justified — until you hear the other side of the argument. This can be found in a number of places, but normally you have to look for it, unlike the version of events preferred by Washington and Brussels, which the corporate media pump out across the world. One such source is an article by Arnold August on the Global Research site.

According to this piece, entitled “Lies and Facts in the Media War Against Cuba,” Zapata Tamayo was not a political activist but a common criminal who had, since 1988, notched up several convictions for disturbing the peace, fraud, injury and possession of non-firearm weapons. In 2000, he used a machete to fracture the skull of a Leonardo Simon, and behind bars he was violent toward the prison authorities.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100427com5.html

Rooftop farming booming in New York FEATURE 04/27/2010

Rooftop farming booming in New York


NEW YORK — Urban farming is a growth industry in New York City’s concrete jungle, and with little open land free agriculturalists and beekeepers have taken to the rooftops to pursue their passion.

Andrew Cote uses the emergency fire ladder to climb up to the roof of his East Village building, where he tends to 250 bee hives.
Cote, a professor of Japanese literature doubles up as president of the New York City Beekeepers Association, and is happy that the city authorized beekeeping in mid-March after an 11-year ban.
“The city wants to plant one million trees, and the trees need to be pollinated,” Cote told AFP..... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100427com6.html

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