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A hard sell at Ateneo EDITORIAL 03/27/2011

Sunday, March 27, 2011

A hard sell at Ateneo

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Noynoy turned off graduates of his alma mater Ateneo the other day as he surprised them by including his efforts to impeach Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez in a lackluster speech, empty of any source of inspiration for those in the crowd among whom may probably lead the country in the future.

That came after a few lines when he supposedly bragged about his achievements that many see as either illusory or non-existent.

Noynoy also used the occasion to dig up a grudge about Ateneo voting for Gibo Teodoro Jr. in a mock poll prior to the elections last year.

“It was reported to me that when mock elections were held in this campus where I came from, most voted for green,” he told the crowd..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110327com1.html

Hard sell FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 03/27/2011

Hard sell

Ninez Cacho-Olivares
Malacañang is on a hard sell campaign for the Senate to convict the Ombudsman. But why?
The Ombudsman, or any other impeachable officer — including a president should impeached if indeed the charges stick and are substantiated with hard evidence, enough to to convince the senator-judges to hand a verdict of guilty.

Does the Palace fear that the evidence to be submitted by the House prosecutors to the Senate is weak and that if the senator-judges do give their judgment on the basis of non-partisanship and strictly on the merits of the evidence from both parties, the Ombudsman will walk?

The Malacañang occupant has demeaned his office by forcing through the impeachment of the Ombudsman in the House. Again the question arises: Why? If the evidence was strong against the Ombudsman, there certainly would have been no need to railroad the impeachment process and on an overkill of the yes vote, to the point of bribing congressmen with an additional P20-million pork for a yes vote..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110327com2.html

France’s star philosopher shines for Libyan cause FEATURE 03/27/2011

France’s star philosopher shines for Libyan cause


PARIS — With his open shirt and flowing dark mane, France’s most infamous public intellectual has adopted the cause of Libyan freedom, taking an outsized role in French foreign affairs in the process.

Even his detractors — and he has many — acknowledge that Bernard-Henri Levy helped engineer France’s pathbreaking recognition of Libya’s fledgling rebel authority, a major impetus for the coalition then gathering to back its struggle.

Largely unheralded abroad, BHL, as he is universally known here, is omnipresent in France, the most visible star in France’s crowded constellation of big thinkers, glitterati and talking heads.

Even those unfamiliar with his ideas or opinions immediately recognize the trademark white dress-shirt, mostly unbuttoned to expose an ever-tanned chest, and his now-graying, wavy black locks..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110327com3.html

Gambling Republic VIEWPOINTS Archbishop Oscar V. Cruz 03/27/2011

Gambling Republic

Archbishop Oscar V. Cruz
Considering the nature of such government corporations as the Pagcor promoting all conceivable forms of gambling plus the PCSO that is another official gambling provider in different modalities with different names, and add thereto the continuous proliferation of a good number of both “legal” and “illegal” gambling syndicates in the country, it is definitely not mere poetry to call the Philippines a “Gambling Republic.”

This is not because Filipinos are born gamblers as gambling providers avidly claim – but rather because the government provides and encourages them to gamble. Truth to tell, there are rather very few countries where the government is a downright gambler itself. This is anything but a national pride.

Never mind the poverty that is pulsating and threatening the peace and order in all the regions of the country. And forget about the graft and corruption still alive and kicking in many of the departments of government. Forget as well the dejection of a big number of people eagerly and continuously seeking work but in fact remain workless, desirous of having their children educated but who. However, become more and more ignorant in the course of time. To all these big social problems, the government appears to be loudly and repeatedly saying “Go and gamble!”.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110327com5.html

The wrath of God TABLETS OF STONE Larry Faraon, OP 03/27/2011

The wrath of God

Larry Faraon, OP
With this latest 6.9 jolt that cracked bridges and tumbled edifices and structures in Myanmar, it would seem that the high end earthquakes are deliriously circling our beloved island country. My hunch seems to tell me that the earthquake “syndicate” may just be waiting for one single fatal mistake the Philippines would be making and tectonic smack would be on its way to jostle our surfaces and waterbeds — a devastation in the waiting. But what exactly would trigger such is what God would be so mad about.

In the Bible, earthquakes are described basically as articulations of God’s wrath over his people, especially over disobedience to his will and crass violations of his law on life and death.

The prophet Isaiah writes: Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the LORD of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger (Isaiah 13:13)..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110327com6.html

French diplomacy: 2 wins, 1 loss on Libya FEATURE 03/27/2011

French diplomacy: 2 wins, 1 loss on Libya


PARIS — France scored diplomatic victories during the international imbroglio over Libya in the form of two UN resolutions, but has failed in its bid to limit the role of Nato in future operations, French diplomats say.

Paris helped spearhead Security Council Resolution 1970, which opens up the possibility of Moamer Kadhafi or his top lieutenants being hauled before the International Criminal Court; and Resolution 1973, which mandates “all necessary measures” to protect Libyan civilians.

Both are unprecedented in the breadth of action they enable against a dictator in power, analysts say.
“It is a high point for the credibility of the United Nations, and above all a signal to the Arab people, whose aspirations for liberty and democracy we all salute,” French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110327com8.html

Alvarez’s questionable appointments in Customs BLURBAL THRUSTS Louie Logarta 03/27/2011

Alvarez’s questionable appointments in Customs

Louie Logarta
Customs Commissioner Lito Alvarez has, for the umpteenth time, proved to his constituents that good deeds are no guarantee for longevity in office, in no small way lending credence to the expression that in the Philippine government success depends not on what you know but whom you know.

The case of District Collector Talek Pablo of the Port of Subic clearly demonstrates the point we’re driving at. Despite having excelled in his post during the few months he has been at the helm of the office (he was appointed there only during the second semester of 2010 as replacement for District Collector Tita Zamoranos. Collector Pablo was unceremoniously shoved out in the cold in favor of Collector Errol Albano, himself another controversial character.

Collector Albano, a member of the politically influential Albano clan of Isabela, had earlier been implicated in 2008 by no less than Undersecretary Antonio Villar Jr. of the Presidential Anti-Smuggling Group in the alleged smuggling of several expensive racehorses from Australia that were said to be consigned to certain individuals associated with the Philippine Racing Commission and also a relative of President Arroyo. The allegations were subsequently denied by Albano..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110327com4.html

Ghost purchases, overpricing found in P125-M PCG racket 03/27/2011


Ghost purchases, overpricing found in P125-M PCG racket

Anomalies involving the manipulation of funds are not an exclusive domain of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) based on revelations in the current Senate inquiry into corruption in the military but also in the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) which is under the Department of Transportation and Communications (DoTC), documents provided the Tribune showed.

The documents consisting of a Commission on Audit (CoA) report and a complaint filed with the Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for the military raised possible anomalies in the disbursement of P125 million in 2007 from a P450 million allotment for the so-called National Oil Spill Contingency Plan (NAOSCP).

A complaint filed last March 18 by Mario Dichoso with the Ombudsman stated that sometime in 2007 then Budget Secretary Rolando Andaya issued a special allotment release order (SARO) for 2008 to DoTC for the P450 million funding of the NAOSCP..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110327hed1.html

Lacson surfaces, planes in from Hong Kong 03/27/2011

Lacson surfaces, planes in from Hong Kong

After the Court of Appeals ordered the immediate lifting of arrest warrants against him, erstwhile fugitive Sen. Panfilo Lacson reapeared from more than a year of hiding late yesterday morning at the Mactan International Airport (MIA) in Cebu disembarking from a flight that came from Hong Kong.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) confirmed Lacson flew in from Hong Kong aboard a Cathay Pacific flight (CX 921) at 11:42 a.m., PNP spokesman Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz said.

Cruz said the senator was met by officials of the Bureau of Immigration.

Based on a lower court order for his arrest, the Interpol earlier went after Lacson but never got him. A March 18 Court of Appeals decision to lift the arrest warrants “immediately” allowed the international police to formally strike off Lacson’s name from its wanted list..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110327hed2.html

Malacañang unfazed by anti-RH rally? By Aytch S. de la Cruz 03/27/2011

Malacañang unfazed by anti-RH rally?

By Aytch S. de la Cruz 03/27/2011
President Aquino’s headstrong position on the issue of reproductive health (RH) insofar as his five-pronged responsible parenthood policy is concerned will not, in anyway, get affected by the massive interfaith rally held by the forces of the Catholic Church the other day in their relentless pursuit to kill the RH Bill which has been gaining grounds at the House of Representatives.

Two of Malacañang’s chief communicators made this clear yesterday with both presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda and Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning (PCDSP) Secretary Ramon Carandang merely expressing respect toward this mass action held by the Church..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110327hed5.html

PAL spinoff OK’d; outsourced workers may appeal plaints to courts — Palace By Aytch S. de la Cruz 03/27/2011

PAL spinoff OK’d; outsourced workers may appeal plaints to courts — Palace

By Aytch S. de la Cruz 03/27/2011
Malacañang has formally ended its mediation efforts on the longstanding labor disputes between the Philippine Airlines management and the members of its union, the PAL Employees Association (Palea) whose bid for a presidential intervention over the flag-carrier’s plan to outsource 2,600 of themto other companies turned out unsuccessful.

This developed as President Aquino decided to uphold the earlier ruling made by Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz, allowing PAL to layoff a number of its workers, only that the transition benefit packages that the flag-carrier previously offered them were modified by the Office of the President (OP).

Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr., in a press statement released by his office yesterday, said the OP empathized with the concerns of Palea and addressed the apprehensions of its members being employed by an entity other than the airline company and the remuneration they would receive..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110327hed6.html

Weak law enforcement makes RP center for money laundering By Aytch S. de la Cruz 03/27/2011

Weak law enforcement makes RP center for money laundering

By Aytch S. de la Cruz 03/27/2011

Malacañang yesterday attributed the Philippines’ inclusion on the list of countries that are said to be global centers for the laundering of money from international drug traffickers to weak law enforcement by the authorities as well as the lack of concerted effort between the three branches of government.

Deputy presidential spokesman Abigail Valte, however, said they will continue to exert more efforts to curb this problem in cooperation with the local government units and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to ensure that drug laws in the country are better executed this time around.

Valte was referring to the 2011 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report released by the US State Department Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs which placed the Philippines in the “Jurisdictions of Primary Concern,” a roll of countries said to be engaged in heavy narco-money laundering activities..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110327nat3.html

Army seizes 3,700 bd. ft. of ‘hot’ narra flitches in Kalinga 03/27/2011

Army seizes 3,700 bd. ft. of ‘hot’ narra flitches in Kalinga

GAMU, Isabela — Army troops from the 77th Infantry Battalion (IB) based in Kalinga province confiscated 3,700 bd. ft. reportedly of “hot” narra flitches at a checkpoint they were manning last Thursday.

According to reports, the various sizes of the narra flitches were seized by troops from the 77th IB led by M/Sgt. Roberto Antonio at a checkpoint in Calanan, Tabuk City around 11:59 p.m.

The suspected hot lumbers were loaded aboard a white Elf truck driven by Joey Palyan, including helpers Jun Panglayan and Mark Olinares, all are living in Bulanao village.

The Cordillera police in La Trinidad, Benguet, said they received information that the alleged owners of the seized products worth P350,000 were a certain Jun Aragon reportedly vice mayor of Paracelis town in Mountain Province; Amboy Agnaya and Masli Lardizabal..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110327nat6.html

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