Wednesday, October 31, 2007


With all these recalls of lead painted toys in the US, it will not be surprising if we will find toxic action figures and cartoon characters being dumped into our country.

Beware of those cheap toys on Christmas.

And for these Halloween, WATCH OUT for formalin laced candies


A Canadian client once told me that Filipinos are very remarkable.

Of all the immigrant races in North America, they are the only ones who send money back home.

UCPB remittance business up 14%

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


The Philippines has approximately 35 Million cellular phone subscribers and at the current situation, this number is expected to grow until it reaches 42.5M.

Of the 35 million, 99% (34 M) are prepaid account holders and they contribute approximately 97% of the total revenues of the cellular phone companies. SMS accounts for a bulk of the income and in my rough estimate, the cellular providers made more than PhP60 Billion from prepaid subscribers text messages in 2006.

Going to the topic for today, a friend once told me that among the cellular phone users in the country, the prepaid subscribers are most prone to abuses. The reason is simple. While the post-paid subscribers are given detailed monthly summaries their their charges, the prepaid accounts are not. Therefore, should there be incorrect charges; they have no way of knowing it. they never see any evil, even if it's already draining their wallets.

That statement may actually be true. In today’s Inquirer article, Conrado Banal wrote about a cellular phone content provider that victimizes unknowing subscribers. It is alleged that,
The company sends prepaid subscribers a ring tone, for instance, and then without much ado, bills them automatically. Yes, whether you want it or not!

And so, by now, the company must have already raked in billions of pesos out of the racket.
Should Banal’s accusations prove to be correct, the company must have in effect stolen an amount that is larger the entire Jose Velarde account.

What now?

Monday, October 29, 2007


Jail the Plunderer!

Joseph Estrada became the president when the country was at its lowest. Even his first State of the Nation Address highlighted the fact the the nation is bankrupt. Despite that, he continued with his scheme and ordered the government to invest its money so that he can earn commissions from it. There were many other charges against him but the prosecution decided to focus on a few cases in order to finish the proceedings early and to increase the chances of getting a conviction.

For 6 years, Estrada arrogantly denied any wrongdoing. For Six years, he projected the image of a righteous fighter.
"Estrada told reporters he would not accept pardon from President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, his former vice-president who replaced him when he was ousted by a popular revolt in January 2001.

Estrada said pardons would be for those who were guilty. If pronounced guilty by the Sandiganbayan on Wednesday, Estrada said he would leave his Tanay estate and go to the New Bilibid Prisons in Muntinlupa City."
Kudos to the prosecution, the almighty Erap was convicted beyond reasonable doubt. And yet, he's free. Not a single day in jail.

Punish the Plunderers. Don't let this be a precedent.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Harvard's Scientist Of The Year Is A Filipino

ABS-CBN: The man whose research led to a groundbreaking medical discovery—a drug a thousand times more potent than morphine but without its drawbacks—will be conferred an honorary doctorate by his alma mater, the University of the Philippines. Dr. Baldomero M. Olivera, who has been named 2007 Scientist of the Year by the Harvard Foundation at Harvard University....

Friday, October 26, 2007


Note: This is further to my two previous posts regarding this topic.

Reading the text of the decision to grant Estrada’s clemency, here’s what I fear..

A retiring government official can actually commit widespread plunder, fight his case, demand for a VIP rest house with a battalion of the best soldiers as guards (while on trial). In the event of conviction, he can file for a pardon by simply copying the letter sent by Erap to GMA. Nope, there is no need to admit anything. By simply citing estoppels and precedent, HE WILL WALK AWAY.

Here’s why:

ESTOPPELS: A legal principle that prevents a person from asserting or denying something in court that contradicts what has already been established as the truth.

equitable estoppels: A type of estoppel that bars a person from adopting a position in court that contradicts his or her past statements or actions when that contradictory stance would be unfair to another person who relied on the original position. For example, if a landlord agrees to allow a tenant to pay the rent ten days late for six months, it would be unfair to allow the landlord to bring a court action in the fourth month to evict the tenant for being a week late with the rent. The landlord would be estopped from asserting his right to evict the tenant for late payment of rent. Also known as estoppel in pais.

  • an example that is used to justify similar occurrences at a later time
  • case law: (civil law) a law established by following earlier judicial decisions
  • common law: a system of jurisprudence based on judicial precedents rather than statutory laws; "common law originated in the unwritten laws of England and was later applied in the United States"
  • a subject mentioned earlier (preceding in time)

Therefore, the succeeding Presidents can actually do nothing should a similar case arise. In the same manner, all those now in jail for plunder may demand pardon from GMA.

That makes this country the most plunder-conducive country in the world.


“Whereas, this Administration has a policy of releasing inmates who have reached the age of seventy (70),

“Whereas, Joseph Ejercito Estrada has been under detention for six and a half years,

“Whereas, Joseph Ejercito Estrada has publicly committed to no longer seek any elective position or office,

“In view hereof and pursuant to the authority conferred upon me by the Constitution, I hereby grant executive clemency to Joseph Ejercito Estrada, convicted by the Sandiganbayan of plunder and imposed a penalty of reclusion perpetua. He is hereby restored to his civil and political rights.

“The forfeitures imposed by the Sandiganbayan remain in force and in full, including all writs and processes issued by the Sandiganbayan in pursuance hereof, except for the bank account(s) he owned before his tenure as President.”


I have made my stand on this. I will say it again:

In a country where millions are poor, stealing public money is the worst crime of all.



please feel free to copy the image and post it in your blogs.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


"POR A CHENZE", (for a change, according to a famous boxer).

I took this shot at the parking area of the MALL OF ASIA.

Please click the "Read More!" link to continue reading...

Look at it closely and note the portion now circled in red.


it is..

a road sign that says.......



Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Trillanes in times of panic

Leaders are supposed to lead and not create misunderstanding, panic and violence. This is most specially true during times of uncertainty.

The good senator Trillianes was quick to accuse the GMA administration as the perpetrator of the Glorietta blasts, barely 4 hours after the explosion. His lawyers followed it up with pronouncements that the jailed senator has evidence to support his declaration. But yesterday, the National Police Chief Razon announced that when they interviewed Trillianes (last Saturday), the Magdalo spokesman admitted that the Friday outburst was only a political statement…. SUSMARYOSEP!

My extreme disappointment at Trillanes is not without basis. The Philippine government spent PhP2 million to send Trillanes to the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) where he was taught a lot about how to become a RESPONSIBLE public SERVANT.

Last Friday's pronouncement was far from being responsible. Tsk tsk.. It sounded a lot more like, sowing disinformation with the intention to create panic, terror and uprising against the government.

Senator Trillanes, have you wasted the people’s investment on you?

You know, fish vendors borrow P5,000 to be used as working capital from the friendly “Bumbay” and pays it back in daily installments (from the profits of their trade). I call the “Bumbays” friendly because they are the only reason why a lot of small entrepreneurs are still alive to this day.

If Trillanes is the kind of output that the Filipino people will get from the 2 million, it would have been a lot better if the money was instead used for microfinance. That way, the money would have fed an additional 400 fish vendors and their families. That is certainly a lot better than using the money to nurture somebody who recklessly blames people without basis.

Trillanes, your only saving grace at this point, is to deny that you made that statement (to Razon) and present solid evidence.

Friday, October 19, 2007


REMINDER: Updates are being posted as it reaches my "Makati Observatory". Like most on the spot reports, the accuracy is at best spotty. Of course, it pays to be careful and avoid the malls, LRT/MRT terminals and other possible terrorist targets. At this point, it seems to be an accidental explosion but until the investigation is completed, we can't be too sure.

Take care, everyone.

More than 30 photos in Disney's blog.


4TH UPDATE (6:30 PM):
It wasn't the Peking garden Restaurant...
"Witnesses said the blast occurred in a section of the mall with clusters of stores selling baby clothes and toys."

3rd UPDATE: 8 DEAD, 70 hurt--> A blogger who refuses to be identified was at a nearby shop when the explosion occurred. Blogger reports that many were injured.

The National Police (PNP) Chief says, it was likely a bomb.


Three people died and others were injured in an explosion in a Makati City mall Friday afternoon, a Reuters report said.

Police said a liquefied petroleum gas tank exploded inside the Peking Garden Restaurant at the Glorietta 2 around 1:20 p.m.

UPDATE NO 1 (2:20pm): The explosion was apparently caused by a gas (LPG) tank. At least 2 people were injured. Witnesses saw smoke coming out of the Glorietta 3 building. Some people say that the explosion was between Glorietta 1 and 2.


ORIGINAL POST (2 PM):Glorietta 1 bombed! -- Text message from an Ayala based employee. As of now, there are lots of cops in the area.

Nothing from the news at this point. Just a few sentences from ABS-CBN and the Inquirer.

If you find the links very slow in loading, it's because of the huge number of people wanting to read that report. Don't bother. At this point, there is no usable information in those reports. Just a few sentences.


Please pass this information to your friends.

During the past few days, a number of policemen using sirens and blinkers in their private motorcycles were apprehended. Hmmn.. errant cops getting arrested? I like that. We all do!

Should you encounter private vehicles using sirens or blinkers, please report this anomaly by texting the information to 0928-398-2873.
Superintendent Perfecto Palad, TMG chief, said the group has confiscated 15 unauthorized blinkers and sirens since Monday. Palad said two of the confiscated blinkers and sirens were used by policemen on their private motorcycles.

Palad urged the public to inform TMG of cars using blinkers and sirens by texting the vehicle's license plate numbers to mobile phone number 0928-3982873.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Possible Solutions to the Janitor Fish Problem

JANITOR FISH (Pterygoplichthys disjunctivus- Laguna de Bay, Pterygoplichthys pardalis- Marikina River, Lake Paitan in Cuyapo, Nueva Ecija)

That cute aquarium cleaner that we love has now turned into a serious menace. It bores holes in the mud that results to water turbidity and the destruction of the river banks. Fisher folks at the Laguna de Bay claim that the janitor fish now comprise 75% of the fishermen’s daily catch. Though very alarming, the figure hardly surprises me. Janitor fish eats like there’s no tomorrow and rapidly increases in population. It largely feeds on algae and pollutants which the Laguna lake has a lot in stock.

The problem is, with its population becoming so hugely disproportional to the rest of the lake's aquamarine life, it started to compete with other fishes for food. And with food becoming scarce, I really won’t be surprised if it will not start feeding on small creatures. The last report states that janitor fish weighing as much 30 kgs a piece is now a common catch at the Laguna lake. And what type of food fish at the Laguna lake weighs lower than that? May I enumerate the following: Bangus (Milk fish), Tilapia (St Peter’s fish), catfish, mudfish, carp… everything!!!

Now that we are in agreement that the janitor fish is a big threat to the 28,000 fishing families (along the Laguna de Bay) and the consumers within the National Capital Region, let’s help eradicate these pests.

Here are the known alternative uses of Janitor Fish:
  1. Its skin can be converted into wallets, purses, watch straps, billfold and key chains using skin from the belly of the fish. Creating other fashion items out the skin should not be so difficult.
  2. The fish can be processed into chicken and pig food.
  3. In an experiment, High School kids from Marikina were able to produce half a kilo of Biofuel for every 12 kilos of Janitor fish.
  4. The government, through foreign donors pays Php 10 for every kilo of that dreaded fish.
  5. Your suggestion please....

Please add your ideas to this list.

Maraming salamat!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007


Been so busy lately but will resume with my blogging activities tomorrow.



PS: keep the fire burning.

Monday, October 15, 2007

MOST DEPRESSING JOBS: This is one reason why I take offense when people speak badly of the OFW's

The Philippines export a number of health care workers very year. These nurses, doctors, caregivers, domestic helpers and other types of people have to bear the pain of distance, bullshits of their bosses, racial discrimination and other inconvenience in order to send money back to their families in the Philippines. Added to that is the fact that a lot of them are employed in depressing conditions.

Please watch the video.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Selamat Hari Raya!

To our Muslim brothers,

Our sincerest greetings!

May God continue to be with all of us.

Thursday, October 11, 2007


Our favorite fist seems to be wanting to move to a higher weight category. He seemed to have difficulty going down to 130 lbs during the last bout and had to undergo a crash course in weight reduction, a few days before the fight. I am sure it negatively reduced his punching power, ability to take punches and overall efficiency. In fact, the last time he did such thing, he was knocked down by his opponent.

I also recall an article saying that Pacquiao started his career in the 110 lbs category. In my opinion, moving 20 lbs higher can be dangerous. Firstly, the players there are naturally taller and bigger. They can be expected to have longer arm lengths which can be used to effectively hold an opponent at bay. they can also be expected to be bigger and have better absorption capacity to punches.

But then again, Pacquiao is also said to punch like a middleweight.

These are just some thoughts. I have been "on sight" in in one of his fights but was never up close. I also have not met any of the top fighters in the 135 lbs category to be able to dish out a better analysis.

Good luck, Pacman!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

PhP 10,000 computers for the Philippines

LENOVO plans to sell $200 PC's in the Philippines.

That's certainly good news for the Filipinos families, the majority of which are yet to have their own PC's.

Let's hope that they will supply us with the good specs at that price level.


A couple of years ago, I called a prospective client in the US and the conversation was very promising. Despite the client's hostile tone, I was given the "Go signal" to pursue the effort.

"I would like to encourage you to pursue your proposal because it will mean tremendous savings for our company". That's what I was told. But when I asked for the person's email address, the client became evasive.

Finally, she said, "We receive a lot of spam from Manila"

This article confirms it.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

BRANDING 101: Scrap Ham

I was leisurely walking around one weekend when this product caught my attention. I bought a hundred grams and stuck it in a pandesal. Wow, it tasted good!!! One thing that didn't sit very well with me though, is the product name that they use to market it.

Do you think this brand will sell like hotcakes?

The Italians successfully branded the delicious Salami which according to some friends is also made of "scrap meat" (hog cheeks and the like). A site that teaches Salami making describes the main ingredient as:

"I prefer to use pork shoulder butts when the recipe calls for pork, beef chuck when beef is used. For fat, I prefer to use what is termed pork back fat, which is the fat trimmed of the loin area of the pig; another choice would be "fat bellies."

The Filipinos did very well and made a phenomenon out of the Sisig, which is basically made of the same hog parts (cheeks, ears, etc).


I am not so sure with scrap ham. Will it sell well?

No continuation to this post. Pls don't click the "Read more!" link. Thanks

Sunday, October 7, 2007


Manny Pacquiao was lucky to have survived considering that he had to undergo shock therapy to be able to make the required weight, a day before the bout. The last time he did that, he was knocked out. The same was the problem of Erik Morales prior to his last bout with Pacquiao. Morales had difficulty going down to the required weight and looked very thin and unhealthy during the weigh in and before the fight.

One good way to lose weight within a few days is to limit the diet intake and combine it with cardio workout and a lessening of one's water intake. Analyzing the news reports, that's what he did. Now, try asking your gym instructor what can possibly happen if you do that? In addition, try asking your gym instructor what will happen if you engage in 12 rounds of championship boxing 24 hours after rapidly losing weight?

The results can be fatal, amigo.

As for Barrera, he was not the avenging hero that he portrayed himself to be prior to the bout. It was more of a scared fighter trying not to get knocked down....

Gotta sleep for now. Will continue this post tomorrow.


No need to click the "Read More!" link. This post ends here. Thanks


Hopefully, this will be a closing post regarding the unfortunate Desperate Housewives fiasco. Let me start by illustrating how the offended parties feel by quoting what other blogs have to say.

The first is Michelle Markin's, being one of the most read blogs in the world. An American born to Filipino parents, she's often quoted as having not so many nice things to say about the Philippines but she sided with us on this one. True to form, there was sarcasm against Filipinos but in regard to this issue, here's what she wrote:

(Quoting a portion of the ABC apology) “There was no intent to disparage the integrity of any aspect of the medical community in the Philippines.”

" Well, of course there was. They should have stopped before that weasel cop-out."

Neil Kramer, in his usually funny style, narrated how a Pinoy doctor felt,

"I immediately called my family doctor, Dr. Mark Guinoo, a 1985 graduate of Manila Medical School, to hear his reaction. He was stunned.

“When will the negative stereotypes ever end?” he said.

Dr. Guinoo has truly been a lifesaver to me. Last year, during a bout with pnemonia, he prescribed “Dr. Scholl’s Foot Lotion” for me, and three months later I was cured.


The Defamer, in an article tagged as "INSENSITIVITY DEPARTMENT" says,

"We're confident that ABC, an organization that's becoming more painfully aware of the power of poorly executed jokes to hurt each day, will rise to the occasion and go beyond the obligatory apology it's already issued, taking the protestor's suggestion of a donation to heart. Expect the humbled network to issue another press release shortly, announcing a generous, conciliatory gift of $1 million to the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center Dance Center, proving their commitment to promoting the healing power of the performing arts."

I remembered this old post that reminds us of what Filipino medical Professionals are not. Having worked so hard to gain acceptance and acquire a solid reputation as caring people, an attempt to demean them is naturally deemed offensive. A few pages ago, I clearly stated that Filipinos are not as bad as the health worker in the video.

Going back, the ABC network has apologized. And if they are going to accordingly edit that episode, may I ask everyone to put an end to the complaints.

Let's move on, as vigilant as before, knowing fully well that allowing anyone to intentionally disgrace us is something that will become regrettable in the end.

This post ends here. No need to click the "Read More!" link for now. Thanks

Saturday, October 6, 2007

A SIDE LIGHT TO PACQUIAO - MORALES II: let's see how the Philippine National Anthem will be sung

The National Historical Institute has spoken with the GMA - 7 to remind Kyla how to properly sing the national anthem.

Several of the past singers bastardized the anthem but got away with it because they sung it offshore-- Susmaryosep!!!!

I hope it's sung properly this time. In this country where a lot of things seem to be wrong, the least that we can do is start by properly singing the "Lupang Hinirang".

Friday, October 5, 2007


The recent Desperate Wives Fiasco that resulted to tens of thousands (80,150 by this time) of online signatures, numerous blog and newspaper articles resurrected the problem regarding the Diploma Mills and the Philippine Nursing Board Scandal wherein massive cheating supposedly happened. In that incident, the government had to order a retake after the United States firmly declared that its hospitals will not accept any applicant who got his/her Philippine license from that ill fated exam.

Some bloggers believe that the scandal created a very bad image of our country and destroyed whatever confidence there is on the Filipino medical professional. Hence, the slur…

Because I have a headache this afternoon, I will argue at levels that are way lower than my usual gutter mentality :-D

Here is my distorted opinion regarding that matter.

The US government conducts its own eligibility examinations for nurses. In my limited knowledge, there is the CGFNS and NCLEX to determine the qualifications of foreign nurses, in addition to a few other tests that includes assessments to determine the applicants' ability to converse and write in English.

Requiring the Filipino nurses to take and retake the Philippine Nurses Licensure examination despite their own CGFNS, NCLEX, etc. is not only redundant. It also betrays either the US government’s belief in vast superiority of the Philippine Licensure exam over the CGFNS and NCLEX or their lack of confidence in the US examinations. In regard to the fake diplomas, I have the same answer. The US has its own medical board exam which should expose the fake doctors. No holder of a fake diploma should be able to withstand that. Besides, Filipino doctors have written that they have to get not just passing but exceptionally high grades just to be admitted for residency in US hospitals.


The superior Philippine exam is the only angle that I can think of, especially after I heard Philippine government officials divulge that nurses from some countries are not even required (by the US) to have nurses’ licenses in their own lands. Why the double standard? May I then pose the question, “Do the US view the Philippine exams as a superior testing process or are they just being bullies with nothing better to do?”

With those doubts notwithstanding, I strongly call for the swift prosecution of the instigators of the fraudulent licensure exams and the criminalizing of Diploma Mills. In my book, massive fraud is not only criminal in nature but it is also as grave as plunder. When applicants are wrongly given licenses to practice civil engineering, permission is in effect given for those people to build firetraps and destroy buildings. In the same token, fraud in the medical licensure exams give substandard doctors the license to tinker with the human body. And worse, they get paid for it!

Thursday, October 4, 2007


"The producers of Desperate Housewives and ABC Studios offer our sincere apologies for any offence caused [by the insulting remark] in the season premier," ABC Network said in a short statement of apology obtained by ABS-CBN North America News Bureau.

ABC Network added: "There was no intent to disparage the integrity of any aspect of the medical community in the Philippines."

There you have it, they apologized. Of course, it was done after realizing that Filipinos are not going to let it pass. Mga kababayan, there may have been overreactions, just like some of the anti Malu Fernandez comments. However, had you kept silent about it, would they have taken it back? Nah, I don't think so.

That's the price of liberty -- blood, sweat and tears. We are a nation because our forefathers fought for it. We will continue to become one for as long as we continue fighting for it.

I remember an accounting professor who once said, "Zealously protect your grades. Do not let any dumbass professor give you anything lower than what you deserve. Any failure to do so will become very regrettable, eventually." Looking back, it was just a grade in a minor subject, but he's right. A failing grade will become a permanent mark that will haunt you every time somebody looks at your transcripts.

In the same manner, had the Filipinos done nothing, that remark would forever have been etched in the minds of those who watched and will view that episode even after we are all gone.

Zealously protect your country. It's the only one that you have. But may I remind everyone, a little bit, to watch your actions for it defines you as a person. Do not overreact.

"Can I check those diplomas 'coz I just want to make sure that they're not from some med school in the Philippines.

  1. I was blog hopping when this piece caught my eye. It's not written by a Filipino, by the way. "There have been many high-profile cases of bigoted and offensive remarks coming from Hollywood, including the Michael Richards' n-word rant and Isaiah Washington's homophobic insult. However, the Desperate Housewives comment is different. The hateful remark made against Filipinos was written into the script! It wasn't just a heated rant or an off-handed insult. The comment went from the writers to the editors to the actors, which says to me that no one felt this was insulting or problematic… and that's a problem!"
  2. By the way, there's an online petition that has generated 40,059 signatures as of this writing.

This post ends here. No need to click the "Read More!" link for now. Thanks

Tuesday, October 2, 2007


I will be out of town til Thursday. I hope to be able to post something on Thursday but definitely, i'll be seeing you on Friday.


Monday, October 1, 2007


Here it is, as a continuation to my earlier post. I have ceased to eat most street foods for the following reasons:

Fishballs, Squid balls, Kikiam, etc.: The raw balls come in plastic bags and close observation will reveal that the products are moist. Question, is that product supposed to be inside a chiller prior to cooking? Hmmn.. Ecoli bacteria, anyone?

Furthermore, do you know where the cooking oil comes from? There was this TV feature that showed a shop that systematically gather old cooking oil containers and collects left over product. The clear liquids are repacked in bottles and sold cheaply in public markets. Where do you suppose these vendors buy their cooking oils? for obvious reasons, they do not use the premium brands in the bid groceries.

The fried food is normally dipped in sauce which is prepared with water, sugar, vinegar and a few other spices. Since sugar is expensive, unscrupulous traders are repacking dirty sugar and worse, the cancerous "magic sugar" and selling it at cheap prices. A TV station showed that public markets are also being supplied with cheap vinegar made from Glacial Acetic Acid (which is supposed to be an ingredient in the manufacture of plastic and rubber products). I suspect that glacial acetic acid is usedby unknowing and some unscrupulous suppliers because it is very cheap. According to doctors from the Department of Science & Technology, glacial acetic acid in vinegar can burn holes in your intestines-- OUCH!

"This material is strongly corrosive and causes serious burns. Very harmful if swallowed. Lachrymator".

CHICHARON & FISH CRACKERS: Watch the Youtube video (above)

COCONUT JUICE: The ones sold in the restaurants, groceries and canteens are ok. But try buying from the street vendor whenever you get caught in a traffic light. Have you noticed that the it tastes more like water? Hmmnn.. I heard that in the slums beside the National Electrification Administration (NEA) Headquarters, huge drums of old chemical containers serve as mixing vats for home brewed coconut juice which are then repacked in those 12 ounce plastic cups.. I probably need not graphically narrate how (un)sanitary the preparation is.

In closing, I need not tell everyone how bad imported food is. We only need to look around and ask ourselves how safe our favorite native food really is.



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