Uniffors


Joc-joc Bolante’s health

Posted in Manuel Buencamino by uniffors on the August 30th, 2006

Manila’s newspapers report that Jocjoc Bolante, the fugitive from Senate investigations, requested the assistance of the Philippine Consulate in Chicago for an undisclosed medical condition. He wants to be transferred to another detention facility, hopefully a private hospital, where his medical and other needs will be given full attention.

We think Bolante’s undisclosed medical condition might be a ripped anus. Those community showers in detention centers are dangerous places, specially when one bends over to pick-up a bar of soap dropped on the shower floor.

Thus our recommended action for Chicago’s Consul General: Don’t waste time and resources on paperwork. Visit Bolante. Bring needles and thread. Remember “a stitch in time….”.

Jabberwocky*

Posted in Manuel Buencamino by uniffors on the August 30th, 2006

Manuel Buencamino, in Business Mirror, thinks lunatics have taken over the asylum. He compares Rep. Edcel Lagman’s legal arguments to a poem by Lewis Carroll.

(more…)

Secforaf Romulo out of the DFA loop

Posted in UNIFFORS EDITORIALS by uniffors on the August 29th, 2006

The Daily Tribune reported :

“Manila’s decision to abstain from voting on a United Nations Human Rights Council reso-lution condemning the Israeli aggression on Lebanon was reportedly not sanctioned by Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo, sources yesterday said. Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) insiders said Romulo, who was on an official trip to Myanmar, was not consulted before the vote was made.”

The report quoted a DFA source, “We don’t know who issued the instructions from the home office. Secretary Romulo was not informed about it.”

Well, outsiders may be shocked by this piece of news but it’s common knowledge in the DFA that Romulo is just another potted plant in the department. Important decisions are made by Mrs. Arroyo and her special advisers.

Romulo is not allowed to decide on anything that is substantive or time-sensitive because he takes forever to decide – even on regular administrative matters like promotions, assignments and rotation. The sad thing is Romulo thinks he’s in charge but he was the last one to learn about the UN vote.

Consequently, Romulo “circulated a memorandum to all DFA offices that all policy decisions must be cleared first with his office and should have his approval.”

We think the more realistic circular would have been for Romulo to request all DFA officials: “at least ‘cc’ me naman about what you’re doing”.

Another human rights commission

Posted in UNIFFORS EDITORIALS by uniffors on the August 29th, 2006

“Let the chips fall where they may. We will not stop going after anyone involved. There will be no scared cows,” That’s what retired justice, Jose Melo, of the newly created commission tasked with investigating extra-judicial killings said. (By the way, “scared cows” was that a Freudian slip ni Melo or a typo by the Inquirer?)

The PNP and the AFP said they will support the Melo commission. However, the PNP created Task Force Usig some time ago to investigate extra judicial killings. And so far, Task Force Usig has not released any findings other than press releases.

The Melo commission asked for six months to prove itself.

Okay, we will suspend judgment until March. But we can’t help thinking that waiting six months is giving the AFP and PNP an extra six months extension on their extra-judicial killing spree.

Meanwhile we ask, why create another commission when we already have a human rights commission? Has the CHR been remiss? Or has it been making Gloria and the AFP uncomfortable?

DND to define its role in elections

Posted in Manuel Buencamino by uniffors on the August 28th, 2006

“DEPARTMENT of National Defense and Commission on Elections officials will meet in an effort to define the role of the Armed Forces during elections and prevent the spectacle of military personnel being accused of participating in the rigging of votes” says this report from the Business Mirror.

The DND is setting guidelines on its participation in elections, according to DND Sec. Avelino Cruz.

Well, heck, Nonong, there is only one rule the AFP should follow – DO NOT PARTICIPATE IN CHEATING.

Better yet, show your sincerity and release the uncencored Mayuga report. Or even better yet, allow the Senate to conduct a full-dress investigation of Esperon, Habacon, and the other generals Garci mentioned favorably in his conversations with Gloria.

LEBANON NOT YET OUT OF THE WOODS

Posted in UNIFFORS EDITORIALS by uniffors on the August 28th, 2006

LEBANON NOT YET OUT OF THE WOODS

The Interim UN Force in Lebanon ( IUNFIL ) is taking shape, with the European Union committing itself to field between 6,500 to 7,000 troops that will form what UN Secretary General called “the spinal column” of a “credible force.”

The EU foreign ministers met in Brussels with Mr. Kofi Annan to pledge specific contributions to the IUNFIL. Italy promised to deploy between 2,000 to 3,000 troops; France, 2,000; Spain, 1,000 to 1,200; Finland, Belgium and Poland, several hundred each. Germany and Denmark promised to contribute naval units while Greece announced the participation of a warship and special forces. The United Kingdom might deploy specialized units.

Indonesia, Malaysia and Bangladesh have each offered to send between 1,000 and 1,500 soldiers and policemen each but it is uncertain if Israel, which considers countries like Bangladesh and Malaysia as hostile, will accept their offers.

The UN force will be commanded by a French general and an Italian general will direct a strategic cell that will be established in New York to oversee its operations and serve as the ultimate authority in the chain of command.

There may be some difficulty reaching the 15,000-man level that observers believe to be the minimum for a robust and effective force to insure that all parties honor the UN-established ceasefire in Southern Lebanon. Even if the figure is reached, there will still be no assurance that the truce will be respected in both word and deed because:

The mandate of the force is still unclear. Secretary General Annan says that its job is not to disarm Hizbollah militias, a task that is left to the Lebanese Army which in turn will do so only after a political agreement is reached with Hizbollah.

The EU countries that pledged to deploy soldiers did not give details on the composition of their respective forces. The nature and composition of a specific national unit are important because the deployment of 2,000 troops, for example, would be next to useless if 1,500 of those troops are support personnel like military policemen, clerks, cooks and the like.

Neither did these EU members announce the schedule of the deployment of their respective units.

Last but not least, there is the unwritten assumption that the Lebanese Army has the capability to disarm or keep the Hizbollah militia and other armed groups away from the area.

These issues have to be effectively addressed if another Israeli invasion of Southern Lebanon is to be avoided.

Pluto is just a dog

Posted in Brownman's Posts by uniffors on the August 26th, 2006

In solar politics, scientists finally agreed that Pluto is not a planet. HERE

These scientists finally got it. Pluto is not a planet. He’s a dog in Disneyland.

Over here, people are still arguing that Gloria Arroyo is the president. She is not the president. She’s the female top dog in the Enchanted Kingdom.

What’s the word for female dog?

The uninvited guest

Posted in Manuel Buencamino by uniffors on the August 25th, 2006

August 25, 2006 After the Impeachment

    “… I extend a sincere hand of reconciliation to my detractors based on the high principles of justice and the common welfare. If there is one lesson learned from this episode of political turmoil, it is that the Philippines can never be torn asunder by politics…I call for a tearing down of partisan fences, a consolidation of voices and a welding of national heart and will to fight poverty, stop conflict and heal the nation.”

December 30, 2002 Before the 2004 Election

    “My reading on the political winds tells me that the 2004 election may well go down in history as among our most bitterly contested elections ever. This is because of the deep social and political division that we now have…The government in place after 2004 may merely end up inheriting a country as deeply divided as ever. Consequently, we may end up stalling national growth for a few years more as a result of lost momentum…In view of all these factors, I have decided not to run for President during the election of 2004…If I were to run, it will require a major political effort on my part. But since I’m among the principal figures in the divisive national events for the last two or three years, my political efforts can only result in never-ending divisiveness.”

Sweetheart, you got it right the first time. Nobody likes you.

Because we can

Posted in Manuel Buencamino by uniffors on the August 24th, 2006

The House of Representatives voted 173-32 to junk the impeachment complaint against Gloria Arroyo.

Asked how the complaint could be dismissed as lacking in substance despite seven mega-boxes of evidence against Mrs. Arroyo, a member of the winning side replied, “Because we can.”

Boycott Petron Part II

Posted in UNIFFORS EDITORIALS by uniffors on the August 23rd, 2006

Manuel Buencamino explains further why we need to give Petron a spanking,

“A boycott will not kill Petron. It is not meant to. It is supposed to be a serious spanking. And a message for other companies to behave lest they suffer the same pain if they do not practice corporate responsibility.

40 percent of Petron belongs to the government . The remaing 60 is majority owned by Aramco with a measly percentage belonging to common shareholders. Maybe the small shareholders should participate in the boycott by selling off their shares.

In more advanced societies, they have investment houses that offer only “green investments” portfolios, that is, they don’t offer investments in companies that do not practice sound ecology. We don’t offer that service in this country so you have to do it yourself.

Bottom line is – an investment is a personal responsibility. It’s not my job to protect your investment so choose your investments wisely.

Starting today, I’m gassing up elsewhere. And I will buy my LPG elsewhere too.”

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