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Daily Archives: August 27, 2018

Teresita’s face

“The secret of ugliness consists not in irregularity, but in being uninteresting.”

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

By Alex P. Vidal442fa-13612173_10206678118334491_1779360806990529016_n

NEW YORK CITY — Even if she is very qualified to sit as the new Supreme Court chief justice, Teresita Leonardo-De Castro has the “misfortune” of carrying a face only her mother can appreciate, thus critics are not so kind when they ripped her apart as they continued to question her ascension as President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s choice to replace ousted Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno.
She was chosen, of course, based on her seniority and qualifications despite her “Medusa-like face” which is immaterial and inconsequential.
It is not De Castro’s fault if she was “born in the league of Charybdis”, the daughter of Poseidon and Gaia who flooded lands for her father’s underwater kingdom until Zeus turned her into a monster and had her suck in and out of water three times a day.
But some of the critics’ disdain of De Castro probably has cultural and historical basis.
It can be traced to the Filipinos’ traumatic experiences with their colonizers.

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The faces of the doñas (Spanish for Mrs) mostly portrayed in the movies to be despicable, mata pobre, maldita and sadistic are still very much etched in the memory of the Filipinos, brutalized and oppressed by Spanish colonizers for 300 years, until today.
Filipinos always have this uncanny penchant of viewing the image of a powerful woman (sometimes wearing the boots and riding on a horse in her hacienda) to be an oppressor orcontrabida (villain) who wields a latigo (whip) while berating and questioning the culture of a Pinay muchacha (domestic helper).
This explains why revolutionary heroes like Andres Bonifacio literally bar-b-qued the fat and mestizo Spanish friars (the “demons” in Jose Rizal’s Noli Me Tangere) they caught during the guerrilla offensives (this did not sit well with Emilio Aguinaldo and this “brutality” reportedly was one the sources of their lingering feud.)
Wonder why some Filipinos hated Jose Pidal a.k.a “Spanish mestizo” Mike Arroyo?
Again, we repeat that it is not the newly installed woman chief magistrate’s fault if “she carries the face that resembles monster Scylla’s partner” in a cave on the Sicilian side of the Strait Messina that threatens Odysseus and the passing ships.
Some Filipinos are really cruel when it comes to judging their leaders by how they look rather than how they govern.


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I had the privilege of meeting and interviewing the contemporary and friend of the late Arizona Senator John McCain in the United States Air Force (USAF) in Springfield, Virginia only last month.
Retired Col. Lester Marlon Romine, 81, confirmed McCain’s heroism as immortalized in the US media today by the late senator’s colleagues and people who honor McCain’s “larger-than-life” military accomplishments.
Unlike McCain who became a politician and was twice defeated in the presidential race in as many attempts, Romine became a spiritual leader.
He gave me a book of his biography and we prayed together with other friends.
The Office of Senator John McCain, meanwhile, released this statement hours after he passed away: “Senator John Sidney McCain III died at 4:28pm on August 25, 2018. With the Senator when he passed were his wife Cindy and their family. At his death, he had served the United States of America faithfully for sixty years.”

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Posted by on August 27, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

‘Investigate’ is a wrong choice of word

“The largest challenge that we face, from my perspective, is the ability to continue moving forward so the agency will have a single mission: that is, to provide decent, safe, and affordable housing.”

–Alphonso Jackson

By Alex P. Vidal442fa-13612173_10206678118334491_1779360806990529016_n

NEW YORK CITY — We doubt absolutely if the National Housing Authority (NHA) will ever succumb to any resolution the Iloilo Provincial Board might pass asking the NHA to award to government employees some of the NHA’s unoccupied housing units in Barangay Cruz, Barotac Nuevo, Iloilo in the Philippines.
The Iloilo Provincial Board, in the first place, has no jurisdiction over the NHA, thus it’s a wrong choice of word to “investigate” NHA’s P4.2 billion housing project in that municipality–unless the project was tainted with anomaly.
If the project reeks with anomaly, let the Congress do the yeoman’s task of grilling the concerned agency officials in the national level “in aid of legislation.”
If the intention of the Iloilo legislature is only to ask a favor, the proper word should be “request” and not “investigate.”
Local legislative bodies don’t investigate government-owned and controlled corporations under the Office of the President mainly because they have not completed the turning over of certain projects to their intended beneficiaries.

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NHA is classified under the Infrastructure Utilities Group and operates under the administrative supervision of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council.
Board Member Domingo Oso Jr., vice chair of the committee on infrastructure, was reported to be contemplating on passing a resolution asking the NHA to give to government employees some of the 1,050 NHA housing units intended for members of the police and the military if no takers were interested to occupy them.
Oso, who is from Barotac Nuevo, was quoted in media as saying: “Until now, the area is not occupied and in my personal observation, the facilities, as required in accordance with the requirements, are not properly installed and put up by the developer.”
He added: “We are planning to pass a resolution that if there are no takers, we will give (the unit) to government employees so that it would be used rather than wasted.”

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Rhodora Lim, NHA-6 estate supervisor, has disclosed that 743 of the housing units have been occupied and the remaining units have been reserved for soldiers now assigned in Marawi City.
Lim explained that the housing project has been purposely earmarked for members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for a unit cost of P260,000 acquired through amortization and salary deduction for 30 years.
We admire Oso’s intention, but the Iloilo Provincial Board can only request for the list of the project beneficiaries; it can’t compel the NHA to award the remaining reserved lots to any Tom, Dick, and Harry in government service except for the members of the PNP and the AFP.

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2018 in Uncategorized