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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Philippine Political Theories, linkage, politics and Facebook

3:32 AM

Political ideologies in the Philippines are dominated by two words, leftist or rightist. Depending on how a person was educated, trained and by personal experience, his ideology on how society, community and government differs from one another although at some issues a common ground is established.

In the Philippines, we classify leftists and rightists according to how they will react on a certain issue. Let me give an example, I have been posting articles online for a couple of years now and the reactions I get depend on how the person is affected. If I write something against the construction of a Mall in a province, some will say “keep it up! We do not need too much commercialization” or “construction of a big mall is against the rights of the small businessmen” etc. But some will also say “we welcome development in the province” or “let us not be left  behind, having a mall will encourage business growth” etc. Simply put, ideas and opinions of every person vary and there could be an unending debate on who has the better thought.

Opinions are everybody’s right whether it is pro or anti-government. Taking away the right of one person to express his opinion is tantamount to over all chaos. If a person expresses his opinion on a certain issue, reactions should be based on the issue presented and NOT on the person who presented his opinion. However, in the Philippines, this is not the case. If you present your opinion in an issue, you will receive comments that are personal in nature such as “grow up” , “immature”, or “poor you”. Worst cases would be threats to you and your family.

Rightists control business, economy and government. People in the right wing will do everything to remain in power and control and that means even using the military and police to achieve his interests. On the other hand, Leftists provide alternative suggestions against the control of the Rightists and addresses the issues and concerns involved in the control and implementation of rightist programs. Leftists are considered as pressure groups, branded as anti-government but seriously speaking, without them, there will be no balance at all.

Leftists are oftentimes associated with the communist party of the Philippines and its branches. People see them rallying in the streets shouting their issues and concerns. They may look like the “contrabidas” in a an action movie but their sentiments and voices provide the much needed balance against a totalitarian rule. They have the balls to speak out when others prefer to keep quiet.

But there is another form of ideology, much bigger and wider than what was presented above, and that is “CENTRIST”. This is the common people’s rational thinking. An independent analysis different from left or right thinking.
As defined:
 “CENTRISTS espouse a "middle ground" regarding government control of the economy and personal behavior. Depending on the issue, they sometimes favor government intervention and sometimes support individual freedom of choice. Centrists pride themselves on keeping an open mind, tend to oppose "political extremes," and emphasize what they describe as "practical" solutions to problems.”
–    an example would be: A centrist may say something such as the following: Abortion should be legal, but only in certain situations such as the woman having conceived during rape or not having the financial ability to pay for the baby, as well as others.

In certain aspects, many individuals are considered a centrist. Open minded to all issues and concerns but do not judge according to a political theory. They try to resolve issues and concerns according to what they believe is right and practical and if needed participate in government control or attend/organize street protests and rallies. It is an action involving the individuals free will and not dictated upon. This evolving theory is fast rising in the Philippines and it is considered as a threat in the bi-theory control in this country.

Again, I consider the “Baguio City case” as a landmark case of “centrists” thinking. The strong opposition for the construction of a Korean project at the Athletic Bowl was started and supported by common people. With the help of technology, open information, participation and awareness, the common people of Baguio city showed support against the City Government’s MOA by participating in an online protest. A group was created at Facebook denouncing the said MOA and in a few weeks the number of members rose to  more than 9,000. These supporters – oppositionists are the “silent voters”. They supported this opposition by free will, expressing their thoughts without fear and looking at no leaders but themselves so that their concerted efforts will bring forward a righteous concern to those who are in control.

As I have been expressing years ago, technology will change the control of information and with such technology comes the fear of losing control especially on the part of  politicians and their organizations because today their slightest moves are now in the publics’ scrutiny. Traditional politics is changing and the new battle ground is done online. Most of the voters in this generation are internet savvy. Information about a politician is traveling faster than the speed of light and even if politicians will use their money to buy votes, I believe the new generation of intelligent voters will decide according to what they think and how they feel and not because of any affiliation or influence.

TRI Media is a thing of the past. Today, the fourth medium is bigger, faster and more people oriented because the internet provides a venue for people participation from all ages around the world. This new medium provides a free for all discussion. Recently, I came across a video clip in Facebook, it was discussing the CPP-NPA-NDF entering into the mainstream of Philippine politics by legal means. I knew at the first instance that it was a bad publicity campaign against those who are running in the party list system. I wanted to see how people will react on the video so I used the “share” button, after which I copied in toto the message of the original poster also emphasizing that it is a re-post. I was amazed when a good friend who is a lawyer instantly belittled me for posting the “anti-leftist” video telling me to grow up and calling me as immature. His reaction didn’t surprise me at all. However, a new comment was added praising the video as informative and should be shared. There was a clear difference in opinion but I decided to click on the “remove” post button to avoid an unending debate just like what happened months ago when I posted a Youtube video with the title “muslim demographics”. At first, there was a good discussion of opinions but later on turned into a bad personal debate between two persons. I had to delete the post. 

Clash of ideologies is now in the internet and unlike before, you can now say whatever you like online without the fear of being punched in the face or lambasted in a proceeding. This new found freedom is somewhat absolute since there is no government agency that can control the internet and the rich exchange of information found within. This freedom is now available to the employees working 8hours inside the office, students, laborers, teachers, ofws, etc who can now  participate anytime in issues and concerns. This was the clear case in the “protect the Burnham park movement”.

Today, I remain to be a centrist. I react against the lapses of government and its leaders if needed and I will not hesitate to voice out concerns against those who are claiming to be progressive. At the end of the day, my opinion remains to be my opinion and I am entitled to it without fear or favor.

With the upcoming elections, social networking sites like Facebook will be flooded with political groups and organizations. Instead of shrugging them off, why not participate, learn and comment? You are free to say anything you want as long as you maintain a certain level of “professionalism”. You have no right to go personal only because the issue presented is against your thinking. Just avoid the “fan pages” since you cannot interact directly. Better join the “groups”, it is interactive.

Pahabol: I read a very long article about the new and unfamiliar trend of Facebook. It is now the largest social organization around the world and it is changing technology faster than we can cope up. According to the article, Google is leading in the world of online advertisements but this will soon be a thing of the past since more and more advertisers prefer Facebook advertising because of their direct target approach. This is why you keep seeing those unending political ads of candidates in your Facebook account and I’m sure those ads will double or triple in the coming months nearing the election date. Facebook will become a venue for Philippine political circus.
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Saturday, February 6, 2010

Benguet politics 2010 online poll survey

2:51 AM

Online Poll survey for Baguio City from Congressman down to the City Councilors is now open. Show your support by voting at www.baguiocitypolitics.blogspot.com.

The recently concluded poll survey showed a participation of more than 6000 online votes. However, some sectors wanted a Baguio alone poll survey where a particular niche for onliners from baguio can be established thus the result will be more accurate for a political "preference".

This poll survey is open fron February 05 - March 25, 2010 only and this time the calendar will be followed strictly since it is already a niche poll survey.

Also, poll survey for online voters for Benguet, Ifugao, Mt.Province, Kalinga, Abra, Ilocos etc are already running with the same period of coverage as shown above.

And as always, let me reiterate that the result of this online poll survey will only show "preference" and is not accurate as to the final result of the 2010 elections.

Show your participation, go to www.watwatworld.com or www.benguetpolitics.blogspot.com to vote.
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Wednesday, February 3, 2010


3:23 PM

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet—The Benguet Provincial Board has finally approved the 2010 budget of the province during its regular session.

Approved was P645, 454,048.50.

Vice Governor Cresencio Pacalso said there is marked increase in this year’s budget allocation, contributing to this is a high beginning balance during the start of the physical year.

Pacalso said there was an over collection of P96 million from last year’s budget estimate.

The estimated budget allocation for 2009 was P629 million, while the actual budget allocated was P604 million, Pacalso said, adding that there were also collections of some uncollected debt to the province which caused this year’s high beginning balance.

According to Pacalso, health will get the most this year’s budget, adding the province will be giving P40 million subsidies for the Benguet General Hospital plus the subsidy for the district hospitals. He however, did not mention the exact amount.

We are still IRA (Internal Revenue Allotment) dependent, the vice governor said, estimating that this year, the province is set to collect P475 million from IRA.

From this year’s proposed budget, the Provincial Board had to realign P23 million suggested projects from the governor’s office which included the construction of Capitol II and some overpasses in La Trinidad.

Pacalso said, we have realigned the budget instead to cover rehabilitation of provincial roads which were damaged during the onslaught of typhoon Pepeng.

Governor Nestor Fongwan in a separate interview expressed his approval to the approved budget.

“We have a good collection this year, surplus collection would mean a surplus in appropriation”, Fongwan said.

During three year term of Fongwan, his administration has increased the budget of the province by P348 million.—larry madarang

Posted by larry on 2010/2/2 10:06:46
Posted at: http://karitoon.com/xoops/modules/news/article.php?storyid=1842
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Benguet Mummies

3:14 PM

Benguet Mummies

Ang mga Benguet Mummies ay kilala din bilang Kabayan Mummies, Fire Mummies, o ang Ibaloi Mummies. Ito ay makikita sa Kabayan, Benguet sa Cordillera Mountain Ranges sa hilagang Luzon ng Pilipinas. Ang mga mummy o mga bangkay ng tao na inembalsamo at tumagal nang mahabang panahon na hindi nabubulok, ay gawa ng mga tribo ng Ibaloi (noong 10th hanggang 16th century), ang natatanging tribo na nagsasagawa ng mummification sa Pilipinas.

Ang mga prineserbang tao ay inisyal na natagpuan sa kuweba ng Timbak cave, Bangao cave, Tenongchol cave, Naapay at Opdas. Ngunit nang ang mga bangkay ay muling natagpuan noong taong 1900s, marami ang nanakaw kasama na dito ang "smiling mummy" (ninakaw noong 1970), na kilala sa pagkakaroon ng buo at kumpletong ngipin.

Tradisyon ng mga Ibaloi

Ilang daang taon na ang nakalilipas, tradisyon na ng mga Ibaloi ang pageembalsamo sa kanilang mga patay upang hindi maagnas. Ang kaugaliang ito ay natigil noong 1500s nang dumating ang mga Kastila at ipinalaganap ang Kristiyanismo sa rehiyon.

Mahigit 200 man-made burial caves ang natagpuan at 15 dito ang naglalaman ng preserved human mummies.


Ang pamamaraan ng pageembalsamo ng mga Ibaloi sa kanilang mga yumao ay nagtatagal ng ilang buwan at kung minsan pa ay taon. Ito ay naguumpisa bago pa man mamatay ang tao. Pinaiinom ang taong nag-aagaw buhay ng isang napaka-alat na inumin ilang araw bago siya mamatay. Kapag siya ay pumanaw na, ang kaniyang katawan ay lilinising mabuti at papaupuin sa isang silyang tinatawag nilang sangadil o (death chair). Ito ay pinapausukan ng ilang buwan gamit ang mahinang apoy hanggang matuyo ang laman nito. Isang banga din ang inilalagay sa ilalim ng upuan upang maipon dito ang katas na nagmula sa katawan ng patay. Kapag nasimot na ang likido o katas, ang katawan ng patay ay ibibilad naman sa araw upang mas mapadali ang panunuyo ng katawan. Ang panlabas na balat ay inaalis ng mga pinuno at pinauusukan ang loob ng katawan gamit ang usok ng tobacco upang mas mapabilis pa ang panunuyo ng lamang-loob. Ang katas naman ng mga halamang-damo ay tuluy-tuloy na ipinapahid ng dahan-dahan sa tuyong katawan ng namatay. Pagkatapos ang bangkay ay inilalagay sa isang pinewood coffin at inililibing ililibing sa mga kuweba sa mga bundok ng Benguet o di kaya sa isang uka sa matarik na bato o bangin.

Mga paghirang

Ang mga mummies na ito ay hinirang bilang isa sa 100 Most Endangered Sites in the World na ginawad ng Monument Watch, isang non-profit organization na inihahandog para sa preserbasyon ng mahahalagang monumento at lugar. Ito rin ay nakasama sa World Monuments Preservation List ng American Express Foundation noong 1998.

Ang libingan ng mga mummies sa kuweba ay opisyal din na prinoklama bilang isa sa mga Philippine National Cultural Treasures alinsunod sa Presidential Decree No. 374 kung saan may layuning preserbahin, protektahan at pangalagaan ang mga ito para sa susunod na henerasyon at bilang pagpapatunay din ng abilidad at pagkamalikhain kaugnay ang religious belief ng kultura at tradisyon ng mga Ibaloi.

Mga pagnanakaw

Noong taong 2000, ang mga Benguet mummies ay inanunsyo na ibinibenta sa Europa sa halagang P310,000. Noong ding taong yun, mga sampung mummies naman ang itinanghal (exhibit) sa San Francisco sa bansang Amerika. Ang gobernador ng Benguet na si Raul Molintas ay humingi ng tulong kay Presidente Arroyo upang maibalik ang mga mummies, na pinanniwalaan ng mga lider ng tribo na ninakaw sa bayan ng Kabayan. Ang secretary general ng Unesco National Commission na si Dr. Preciosa Soliven at ang kalihim ng Department of Foreign Affairs na si Blas Ople ay hinigian din ng tulong sa pagbabalik ng mga ninakaw na mummies.

Noong 2004, walong century old mummies na ninakaw noog taong 1960s ang naibalik sa kanilang kuwebang libingan sa Sitio Timbac at isang death ritual ang ginanap na tinatawag na "kape." Nag-alay sila ng apat na baboy bilang pag-alay sa mga espiritu ng kanilang mga ninuno.

Ang mga libingan sa kuweba ng mga mummies sa Benguet ay binuksan sa mga turista noong 1970s. Mula noon, ang mga pagnanakaw sa mga ito ay naging malimit. Ang mga opisyal ng Benguet ay sumang-ayon sa pagpapalagay ng bakod na gawa sa bakal at magkaloob ng pondo para sa pagpapanatili ng mga ito at bilang kapalit din ng pagbabalik ni Apo Anno, isang mummy na ninakaw at pinaniniwalaang isang mataas na pinuno sa Benguet at anak ng isang diyosa.

Ang mga Kankana-ey ay naniniwalang ang pagbabalik ni Apo Anno ay makapaghahango sa rehiyon mula sa mga lindol at hindi magandang pag-aani na dulot ng sumpa.
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Benguet Small Scale Mining

3:04 PM

Benguet to host 7th Small Scale Mining Congress

by Redjie MElvic Cawis

La Trinidad, Benguet (5 December) -- More than 3,000 small scale miners are expected to attend the 7th Small Scale Mining Congress on December 16 to 18 to be hosted by Benguet province.

With the theme "Small Scale Mining: A Positive Resource for Community Development", the Benguet Federation of Small Scale Miners, the provincial government of Benguet together with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources - Mines and Geosciences Bureau of the Cordillera (DENR-MGB) will educate further the miners of Benguet and the Cordillera region.

The congress aims is to provide a venue for small scale miners to further improve their present mining and milling methods and to strengthen working partnerships among stakeholders to attain common goals for responsible small scale mining operations, said Engr. Felizardo Gacad, Mine and Safety Division Chief of the MGB-CAR.

The congress will be concentrating on the issues and development of the small scale mining industry which is a low profile industry in the region particularly in the province of Benguet.

A seminar on safety health and environment will be held at the Palispis Hall at the Benguet Capitol on December 16 and 17 with speakers from the University of the Philippines - Diliman, DENR and the MGB.

DENR Secretary Lito Atienza will be the guest of honor and speaker on December 18 during the Small Scale Mining Field Demonstration and Competitions at the Wangal Sports Complex. The field demo and competitions will feature the small scale miners skill in hand drilling, hand mucking, tug of peace, sack of ore relay, and arm wrestling.

There are more than 20, 000 small scale miners in Benguet and around 60 association regionwide.

The small scale mining is a devolved function to the Local Government Units and the DENR thru the MGB extends assistance and supervision.
The Small Scale Mining Congress is an initiative of the MGB-CAR seven years ago. (PIA-CAR)

PIA Press Release

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Benguet Candidates Position and Party Affiliation - 2010 Elections

2:43 PM


Liso Agpas PDP -LABAN
Ronald Cosalan LIBERAL PARTY

Nestor Fongwan LAKAS-KAMPI CMD

Vice Governor
Cresencio Pacalso LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD
Wasing Sacla PDP-LABAN

Board Member

First District
Fernando Aritao PDP-LABAN
Alfonso Fianza LAKAS-KAMPI CMD
Francisco Golingab LIBERAL PARTY
Ernesto Matuday LIBERAL PARTY
Juan Nazarro Jr. LAKAS-KAMPI CMD
Benjamin Saguid LAKAS-KAMPI CMD

Board Member

Second District
John Botiwey PDP-LABAN
Loreto Buya-an LAKAS-KAMPI CMD
Apolinario Camsol LAKAS-KAMPI CMD
Albert Martinez INDEPENDENT
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2:26 PM

Comelec issues list of candidates for Benguet

by S.C. Aro

La Trinidad, Benguet (5 December) -- The Commission on Elections issued the list of candidates for the congressional and provincial posts for the province.

There are six candidates vying for the lone congressional seat. Comebacking Ronald Cosalan under the Liberal Party,Board Member Liso Agpas under PDP Laban, Jack Dulnuan under the Nacionalista Party, La Trinidad Councilor Thomas Chamos, an independent candidate, and a perennial candidate Bedis Guznian as independent.

There are three tested politicians vying for the gubernatorial post - Last term as congressman, Samuel Dangwa (Independent), incumbent Governor Nestor Fongwan (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD), and comebacking former Governor Raul Molintas (Nationalist Peoples Coalition).

It is a two-way fight for the vice-gubernatorial post between incumbent Vice Governor Crescencio Pacalso (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD) and Wasing Sacla (PDP Laban).

Contenders for the Provincial Board for the first district are as follows: Rimando Anguitay (Nacionalista Party); Fernando Aritao (PDP Laban), Philip Canuto (Independent); Albert Claro (Nacionalista Party); Alfonso Fianza (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD); Francisco Golingab (Liberal Party); Ernesto Matuday (Liberal Party); Juan Nazarro Jr. (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD); Romulo Polon (Nacionalista Party); Benjamin Saguid (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD); and Johnny Waguis (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD).

Vying for the Provincial Board for the second district are : Jose Andiso (Nacionalista Party); Concepcion Balao (Nationalist Peoples Coalition); John Botiwey (Partido Demokratiko Pilipino Lakas ng Bayan); Loreto Buya-an (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD); Apolinario Camsol (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD); Nardo Cayat (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD); Joseph Cosente (Nationalist Peoples Coalition); Nelson Dangwa (Independent); Rogelio Leon (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD); Albert Martinez (Independent); Jaime Paul Panganiban (Independent); Samson Paran (Independent); Catherine Poole (Independent); Florence Tingbaoen (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD); and Lolito Sarac (LAKAS-KAMPI-CMD).

COMELEC listed a total of 193,991 registered voters who will determine the fate of the candidates in the elections next year. (PIA-Benguet)
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