Stories posted 2006


Keeping in tune with 2010

WHAT WILL the world be like in 2010? Who knows? We can only imagine our preferences and try to make them real.

As the global village moves toward greater uniformity and inter-connectivity, chances are cultural character and uniqueness will become even more valuable because these serve the world of culture, just as biodiversity serves the sphere of life.

First Person

Reality bites

“THE FUTURE of this nation is as bright as its bearers — passionate and patriotic young Filipinos ready to take on the reigns of leading the country to its much desired progress…”

How I wish I could write those words and mean them. But as I reflect on how I see the Filipino youth in 2010, there is one feeling that remains: uncertainty.


‘Ate Glo’ speaks

IT’S written in the cards. Fervent prayers will be needed for what lies ahead, says fortune teller Gloria Yasay, better known as Ate Glo.


A reconfigured Filipino family

AS IN many other countries, family is sacred in the Philippines, invoked by bishops and business people, educators, and politicians. But we seem to up the ante on the family with all kinds of laws and official pronouncements.

The 1973 Constitution, for example, mentions that the State “shall strengthen the family as a basic social institution.” The statement sounds almost anemic when compared to the 1987 charter, which has an entire section declaring: “The State recognizes the sanctity of family life and shall protect and strengthen the family as a basic social institution. It shall equally protect the life of the mother and the life of the unborn from conception. The natural and primary right and duty of parents in the rearing of the youth for civic efficiency and the development of moral character shall receive the support of the government.”

The Economy

Walking on a knife’s edge

MAKE NO mistake about it: The Arroyo government has focused its energies on improving its fiscal situation. But it is doing so primarily to address the concerns of international creditors and credit-rating agencies, as well as to survive the political challenges to Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s presidency. And while it has been hailed by the creditor community as a “success,” the Arroyo administration’s fiscal policy now poses a major obstacle to economic growth, job creation, poverty reduction, and the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Restarting the political and electoral reforms train

THE PRESENT crisis facing the presidency of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo underlines the necessity for far-ranging changes in our political and electoral systems. It also poses both a threat and opportunity as far as these reforms are concerned. As such, careful handling is needed to neutralize the threats and seize the opportunities.


The Church as the people’s moral compass

PHILIPPINE POLITICS has probably become the biggest obstacle to our socio-human development as a people, the most depressing reality in the life of our country. The mere mention of the word “politics” brings many different pitiful visions and painful reactions. The term “politicos” immediately and strongly carries many connotations — except what is really good and true, what is altogether honest and just.

First Person

Confronting peace, battling stereotypes

JUST AS I wear different hats as an activist, journalist, or trainor, depending on the task at hand, I also have to deal with layers of identity: Maranao, my tribal affiliation; Moro, my valiant ancestry; Filipino, my passport nationality; Muslim, my faith. To make matters more complicated, I am a woman in an evolving community that many say is also confused. At the very least, they say, it has to contend with three laws: the traditional and customary law, Philippine law, and Islamic law.

A stronger revolutionary movement

THE RULING system in the Philippines is semicolonial and semifeudal. It is dominated by foreign monopoly capitalist countries headed by the United States and Japan. It is ruled by the comprador big bourgeoisie and the landlord class and managed by their political representatives. The foreign and local exploiters collaborate against the national and democratic rights and interests of the Filipino people.

Ending the Communist insurgency

LAST JUNE, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo announced an all-out campaign to bring about in two years’ time the conditions that would result in putting an end to the 37-year-old insurgency waged by the Communist Party of the Philippines-Marxism-Leninism-Mao Zedong Thought (CPP-MLMZT) and the New People’s Army (NPA), as well as the National Democratic Front (NDF), which the CPP-MLMZT controls. The attainment of these conditions is to be pursued through a total approach, consisting of a set of programs and measures-military, police, legal, political, information, diplomatic, and very importantly, the equitable delivery of basic social services, especially to disadvantaged sectors and communities. These programs and measures, taken together, are meant to comprehensively address the insurgency, both in terms of its politico-ideological-military aspect and its socio-economic “root causes.”

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