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DBM, youth groups clash over SUCs budget — Page 3 Philippine Collegian Opisyal na lingguhang pahayagan ng mga mag-aaral ng Unibersidad ng Pilipinas - Diliman 8 Setyembre 2011 Taon 89, Blg. 11-12

GROUND

ZERO N G M E M O R YA Kultura

11 

Dibuho ni Nico Villarete

The angry birds are online >:(

Neglected conditions

Kultura Pahina 13

Editoryal Pahina 2

Mga pasalubong na kuwento mula sa mga bagong bayani Lathalain Pahina 8-9

Last man standing Terminal Cases Delfin Mercado

I

t is morning once again. The night has come and gone in a whirlwind of blurred colors and hushed voices. The stale half of a jelly-filled donut lies on top of a bundle of envelopes and paper. Crushed coffee cups, cigarette butts and empty fastfood cartons litter the floor. On every available bench and chair, someone is trying to catch a few minutes of sleep. The effect of that last cup of coffee I drank a few hours ago is already wearing off. My eyelids are drooping and I’m tempted to doze off for a while but I know that I shouldn’t. It’s “crunch time” in the Collegian office, and everyone is tapping on their laptops like crazy. The sound of the typing mingles with the monotonous buzzing of the airconditioner to seemingly mumble: “hush baby, close your eyes.” Sleep is the greatest flaw of humankind. Half of our lives is wasted on sleep. Imagine how much time that is. Without sleep, we could do twice as much, live twice as long, achieve twice more. I wish I could go on working for days on end, without ever batting an eyelash. The fellow beside me is yawning while squinting at a particularly red draft flashing on his laptop screen. One of the editors is lying on the floor face down, muttering “kill me now, kill me now.” Behind me, an irate layout artist is pacing the floor, calming herself while waiting for articles to turn up. Far beyond, in the next room, I could hear someone snoring. A fallen warrior, dead to the world. Sleep is a temptation. And only losers succumb to it easily. Evading sleep is a skill and an art, a combination of proper training and the right tricks of the trade. In this fast world where everything is paid by the hour, mastering the art of staying awake is the key to social mobility. Mankind’s civilization will reach its highest point when humans finally eradicate sleep. With people staying awake all the time, more hours may be spent on valuable research or in the creation of the best artworks. The fellow beside me has also fallen to the trap, head on the keyboard. A few moments from now, the few who have remained standing will also fall. I must outlive them. I am efficient. I am the man. I will defeat sleep. It has been three days since the last time I was able to sleep on my own bed. Or sleep at all. I don’t sleep – I take naps. Just a little bit more and I’ll outlast them. Poor, unfortunate, inefficient souls. The morning sun is already showing its might. The letters in my laptop screen are slowly turning in a psychedelic fashion. Hello, Mr. Sandman. ●


2 • Kulê Opinyon

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

Neglected conditions Alleviating hardship today, while reducing poverty tomorrow. This is the grand promise of the conditional cash transfer (CCT) program, an initiative which has been implemented in numerous countries around the globe. In Mexico, the program is called “Oportunidades.” In Brazil, “Bolsa Familia.” In Indonesia, “Jaring Pengamanan Sosial.” And in the Philippines, “Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.” There is no shortage of arguments on both sides of the issue. Some argue that CCTs help increase school attendance and improve health conditions in poor communities, thus ensuring a better future for CCT beneficiaries. Yet the program has also failed in other countries, for a host of reasons ranging from corruption to crime. This tangle of issues is not the way forward. Certainly, it is worth asking, “What are the pros and cons of CCT?” Yet the real problem is a different one. Instead, we must delve into the roots of the problem: “What is the best measure the government can implement to significantly reduce poverty?” For President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III — armed with around P1.816 trillion in the national coffers for 2012 — two options are the most viable. He can spend on a local version of the CCT program; or he can allocate the money directly for social services, such as higher funding for public schools and hospitals. Spending on social services is intended to ensure the maintenance of quality and affordable schools and hospitals throughout the country. In this manner, the poor can directly go to free or low-cost public institutions, instead of waiting for the government to give them a monthly allowance that generally proves inadequate in the face of ballooning costs of privatized social services. However, while funds have dwindled for social services, the budget for CCTs has spiraled upwards

since the program’s inception during the term of former president Gloria Arroyo. The budget for CCTs in 2012 rose to P39.5 billion from P21.2 billion this year, an 80 percent increase — evidently, Aquino has chosen the CCT program as his method of poverty reduction. And in the Philippine context, this strategy makes absolutely no sense. Under the CCT program, the government gives the lowest-income segment of the population regular cash handouts, ranging from P500 to P1,250 per family per month. The handouts are conditional on local officials certifying that the beneficiaries meet certain conditions, like bringing children regularly to health centers; or ensuring an 85 percent class attendance rate for school-age youth. A family in the P500-per-month bracket will get a grand total of P6,000 over the course of a year. What if a child contracts dengue? Due to the budget cuts in the health sector, the nearest public hospital is likely underfunded and understaffed, so the family may end up with no choice but go to a private hospital. The costs, then, would rise sharply, and the CCT would be of no use. Indeed, there is no context for the success of the program; even if every Filipino child goes to school everyday, there is no way for him to receive a proper education. Schools throughout the country are overcrowded and underfunded, with too few rooms, teachers, schoolbooks, and funds. Moreover, the media is rife with stories about problems with implementation of the CCT program, which has turned into another opportunity for local government officials to engage in corruption. Grassroots organizations report that some families receive below the minimum rate per month; some families fake requirements to meet the conditions for the handouts; and some families who should be receiving CCTs are not even on the list.

QUOTED

The Philippines should be as easy to sell as Chicken Joy. —Newly-appointed DOT Secretary

Ramon Jimenez, during his press briefing after swearing into office, gmanews.tv, September 1

We do not want to improve the actual system; we want a profound change –to stop seeing education as a consumer good, to see education as a right. —Camila Vallejo, Chilean student movement leader, guardian.co.uk, August 24

[Ang love life ko] parang Coca-Cola… ‘nung araw regular, naging light, ngayon zero. —Pres. Benigno Aquino III, to the Filipino community in Beijing, China when asked

Editoryal

regarding his relationship status, abs-cbnnews.com, September 1

Jano Gonzales We must underscore, however, that the arguments against CCT go beyond the inadequacy of the cash handouts and the defective implementation of the program — the CCT program is simply unsustainable, and entirely wrong for our country. Genuine solutions must posit long-term designs for steady and significant poverty reduction, reducing the yawning wealth gap between the wealthy elite and the millions of impoverished masses by

ensuring that the latter also have access to basic social services. The truth the Aquino administration must confront is that CCTs will not prevent or even cure the social ill of poverty — it is only a band-aid measure, largely ineffectual, and a waste of the national budget. ●

Philippine Collegian www.philippinecollegian.org Punong Patnugot Marjohara S. Tucay Kapatnugot Pauline Gidget R. Estella Tagapamahalang Patnugot Dianne Marah E. Sayaman Panauhing Patnugot Jayson D. Fajarda, Larissa Mae A. Suarez Patnugot sa Lathalain Mila Ana Estrella S. Polinar Patnugot sa Grapiks Nicolo Renzo T. Villarete, Chris Martin T. Imperial, Ruth Danielle R. Aliposa Tagapamahala ng Pinansya Richard Jacob N. Dy Pinansiya Amelyn J. Daga Tagapamahala sa Sirkulasyon Paul John Alix Sirkulasyon Gary Gabales, Ricky Kawat, Amelito Jaena, Glenario Ommalin Mga Katuwang na Kawani Trinidad Gabales, Gina Villas Pamuhatan Silid 401 Bulwagang Vinzons, Unibersidad ng Plipinas Diliman, Lungsod Quezon Telefax 981-8500 lokal 4522 Email kule1112@gmail.com Website philippinecollegian.org Kasapi Solidaridad: UP Systemwide Alliance of Student Publications and Writers Organizations, College Editors Guild of the Philippines

Terrorists and terrorism cannot be eliminated any more than we can rid the world of disease

—Richard N. Haas, former Director of Policy Planning, US State Department, english.aljazeera.net,September 6

UP ranked 332, falling 18 spots from 314 last year… Ateneo de Manila University was rated top 360… 2 other universities placed farther down the list… Partida na yan... puro walkouts pa tayo at walang magandang facilities. What more if we are given all the support?

—UP Prof. Gerry Lanuza, Facebook post on the latest Quacquarelli Symonds world university rankings, September 5


3 • Kulê Balita

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

DBM, youth groups clash over SUCs budget Marjohara Tucay The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has denied the existence of cuts in the allocation for UP and other state universities and colleges (SUCs) next year, igniting immediate contention from youth groups that government subsidy for SUCs in 2012 will indeed be decreased. SUCs will receive a total of P23.6 billion next year, down by P146.6 million from the current P23.7 billion, according to the 2012 National Expenditure Program (NEP). However, aside from the P23.6 billion budget for 2012, SUCs are also set to receive more than P2 billion under the Miscellaneous Personnel Benefits Fund (MPBF), a lump sum allocation for unfilled positions in the government, and an additional P500 million under the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) for “SUCs development,” DBM Secretary Florencio Abad told the Collegian. “The Aquino administration has increased the aggregate budget for SUCs by 10.1 percent to P26.1 billion in 2012, from P23.7 billion in 2011. In other

words, there is no decrease,” Abad said. It is “deceptive” to include funds allocated in other agencies in computing for the total allocation for SUCs, as such funds will only be given to SUCs after certain conditions are met, said Anakbayan National Chair Vencer Crisostomo.

‘Conditional funds’

The P2-billion allocation under the MPBF, for example, will only be released once the administration of SUCs have filled up the positions for regular faculty and staff and submitted several documents to DBM. “It’s not that easy to promote employees to regular positions… Besides, DBM does not release the full budget for unfilled positions every year,” said UP President Alfredo Pascual , explaining that since 2010, DBM has only released a third of the funds for unfilled positions in UP. If the conditional funds are not included in the computation of the total budget of SUCs, the said schools will only receive P23.6 billion, less than a third of the P62-billion proposed budget of all 112 SUCs for 2012.

MULING PAGKALAMPAG. Bilang pagkundena sa nakaambang pagkaltas sa badyet ng edukasyon at iba pang batayang serbisyo, kinalampag ng mga estudyante mula sa iba’t ibang kolehiyo at hayskul sa Kamaynilaan ang Batasan noong Agosto 26. Marahas na itinaboy ng pulisya gamit ang water cannon ang mga nagprotestang kabataan. Chris Martin Imperial “It is lamentable that SUCs now have to grovel for funds under the MPBF which the DBM has the sole discretion to disburse. The MPBF, which is supposedly allocated for personal services, technically and practically removes from SUCs the prerogative to allot the meager funds to where they are truly needed. This puts SUCs at the mercy of the DBM’s bureaucratic whims,” Crisostomo said. Meanwhile, the P500 million allotted for SUCs under CHEd is also a conditional fund, Crisostomo added. SUCs will only receive a portion of the P500-million fund if they reformat their curriculum to focus on the

Aquino administration’s priority areas, which include agriculture, tourism, infrastructure and business process outsourcing. “Parang nagkaroon na ng pork barrel ang CHEd na pwede nitong gamitin para makontrol ang SUCs. This fund undermines their academic and fiscal freedom,” Kabataan Partylist Representative Raymond Palatino said. “Like last year, Secretary Abad resorts to deception, lies and halftruths to cover up the cuts in SUC spending for this year…The secretary is again engaging in technocrat doublespeak to cover up the fact that the government allocation for SUCs, education and social services is grossly insufficient and is steadily declining over the years,” said Crisostomo. In the SUCs budget deliberations last year, DBM proposed a P23.4 billion budget for 2011, a decrease of over P400 million from the P23.8 billion budget approved for 2010. A series of protests and demonstrations were launched by various student groups to oppose the impending cut, culminating in a nationwide student strike last November. “Last year, Abad also claimed that there were no budget cuts for SUCs. However, his spin failed to undermine the broad movement against budget cuts last year,” Crisostomo added.

Insufficient allocation

DAGDAG PASANIN. Nagdaos ng kilos-protesta ang mga maralitang tagalungsod sa isang gasoline station sa kahabaan ng Kamias Road sa Quezon City noong Agosto 30. Ipinanawagan ng grupo ang kagyat na pagpapababa ng presyo ng produktong petrolyo at pagbasura sa Oil Deregulation Law. Chris Martin Imperial

For UP, meanwhile, DBM only approved P5.54 billion or 32 percent of the P17-billion budget proposal of the national university for 2012. This represents a 3.6 percent or P208.2 million decrease from the current P5.75 billion budget of the university. However, Abad disputed that there would be a cut in UP’s budget

next year. Taking into account the budget for unfilled positions, UP’s actual budget for 2012 increased by seven percent to P6.619 billion from the current P6.176 billion allocation, he said. “Technically, the DBM may say that there is no budget cut. However, what DBM does not realize is that the university has increasing needs. We need to explain that what they are providing is really not enough,” Pascual told the Collegian via phone. Pascual explained that for years, the government has determined the allocation of the university through baseline budgeting, which uses existing spending levels as basis for estimating the allocation for the succeeding year. “Because of this system, the budget for maintenance and other operating expenses has remained roughly the same for years,” Pascual said. While DBM claims to use the zerobased budgeting scheme — wherein the allocation is determined based on the actual needs of an agency — starting 2012, the budget agency still did not consider the P17-billion proposal of the university for next year and instead based the budget for 2012 on the estimated spending level for the current year. “At hindi rin naman lahat ng budget na allocated for UP ay pumapasok talaga. Take the case of congressional insertions. Last year, nadagdagan ng P200 million ang budget ng UP through insertions, pero hanggang ngayon, hindi pa naman pumapasok ang pera,” Pascual added. “Numbers-gimmickry and technocrat jargon cannot belie the fact that budget allocation for SUCs is unjustly insufficient,” Crisostomo said.  ●


4 • Kulê Balita

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

BOR grants Raymundo tenure in different dep’t Isabella Patricia Borlaza The Board of Regents (BOR) has finally granted tenure to Assistant Professor Sarah Raymundo in the Center for International Studies (CIS), three years after she first filed her application in a different department. In the August 25 meeting, the BOR unanimously voted in favor of Raymundo’s tenure in the CIS. The BOR also granted tenure to 41 other faculty members in the said meeting. “It was a political decision,” said Student Regent Kristina Conti. “[The delay of her tenure grant] really stemmed on the reluctance of the Sociology department to accept her teaching techniques, which was to let the students flourish, to find their own niche,” Conti added. A full-time faculty in the Sociology department since 1999, Raymundo first submitted her application for tenure on February 2008. To apply for tenure, a temporary faculty must meet the minimum requirements indicated in the UP Faculty Manual: a master’s degree, a satisfactory teaching performance, and sole or lead authorship of a published work. The temporary faculty’s application must be recommended by the majority of the tenured faculty to the College Executive Board who will then forward the application to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs (OVCAA), the Chancellor and the BOR. In Raymundo’s case, the Sociology department voted thrice on her tenureship. During the first vote on May 2008, seven of the ten tenured Sociology faculty were in favor of granting tenure to Raymundo. However, the minority who voted against tenure sent a report to the OVCAA, which prompted then VCAA Lorna Paredes to return the department’s tenureship recommendation.

The Sociology faculty voted two more times and denied Raymundo’s tenure in both instances. After the department refused to clarify the reason for the dismissal of her application, Raymundo appealed to then Chancellor Sergio Cao, and to former President Emerlinda Roman, both of whom denied her appeal. On May 31, 2009, Raymundo’s contract in the Sociology department ended. With no teaching load, Raymundo submitted a letter of appeal to the BOR, the highest decisionmaking body of the university, on January 15, 2010. The BOR granted her appeal on May 27, 2010. The Sociology department, however, questioned the BOR’s integrity because of the Staff Regent and Faculty Regent’s involvement in the campaigns for Raymundo’s tenure. Even with the BOR’s decision, the department still did not give her tenure as there were no available slots at that time. Due to the Sociology department’s refusal to give her teaching load, Raymundo applied for a teaching position in CIS last April and was accepted the following month. “I think justice has been served to Sarah [Raymundo], although delayed. It is rightfully hers for she has fulfilled and even exceeded the minimum requirements [for tenure]. This also shows that Raymundo’s case is an example of the unjust minority decision by the anarchistic few of the Sociology Department,” said All UP Academic Employees Union (AUPAEU) President Michael Andrada. “I don’t think my case was any different but it was the first time that it was raised into a movement for faculty rights and welfare. It showed what the junior faculty can do to protect their rights. Looking back, people could have acted on a more prudent, just and transparent manner,” said Raymundo. ●

LOST CAUSE. UP forward Mike Silungan drives past Jarelan Tampus of De La Salle University during the men’s basketball game at Araneta Coliseum on September 4. The Green Archers overcame UP’s double-digit advantage in the first half, and won the game by just a single point, 73-72. Richard Jacob Dy

UP SPIKERS CLINCH 2ND WIN VERSUS LA SALLE

SPORTSCENE Isabella Patricia Borlaza The UP Fighting Maroons have regained their tempo in the Beach Volleyball Tournament of the 74th season of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP), as they towered over the De La Salle Green Archers at 19-21, 21-19, 15-10 on September 4 at the University of the East (UE) sand court. After failing to sustain a three-set match against Far Eastern University Tamaraws, 21-19, 21-16 on September

3, UP Spikers Samuel Stephen Paquiz and Dominico Lucindo regained and fired up a neck-and-neck battle against Archers Kevin De la Vega and Red Christensen. The Maroons were off to a rough start as they struggled to deflect shots from the Archers in the beginning of the first quarter, 5-7. The Maroons managed to save three consecutive rallies, but readily lost the points due to service errors. The Archers regained momentum and slammed line shots, leveling the score at 19-19. The Maroons then fired two outside shots, giving the Archers an easy win for the first quarter. Standing at six foot and four inches, Paquiz towered over the net to work on his blocks that inched them a lead in the beginning of the second quarter at 11-10. The Archers’ spikes

only bounced off Paquiz’s blocks and the Maroons clinched succeeding rallies. The Archers tried to retaliate but were not able to catch up with the Maroons’ early lead until the set ended, 21-19. Though the Archers dominated the start of the third set, the Maroons were able to catch up by gunning aces and line shots. At 13-8 in favor of the Maroons, the Archers hit two more consecutive aces, narrowing the gap to three points. The Archers attempt two more spikes but Paquiz blocked them with ease, earning them the two points to close the game. The Maroons ranked fourth overall in the beach volleyball tournament last year. With two wins and two losses, the UP Spikers now hold on to sixth place and will face current fifth placer UE Red Warriors on Septenber 7. ●

Poor ranking of PHL universities reflective of education crisis – youth solon In light of the latest report from Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings which did not place any Philippine university in the top 300, Kabataan Party-list Rep. Raymond “Mong” Palatino today said that the poor ranking is reflective of the long-standing education crisis made worse by budget cuts and aggressive commercialization in tertiary education. “The QS itself, as a ranking body, recognizes the link between

insufficient government funding and the decline in the quality of education,” Palatino said. According to the report released Monday, the University of the Philippines ranked 332; the Ateneo de Manila University, 360; De La Salle University and the University of Santo Tomas placed in the 551-600 bracket and the 601+ bracket, respectively. Palatino said that the national average rate of tuition in the country has doubled in the span of 11 years.

He also said that under the Aquino government the budget of State Universities and Colleges (SUCs), of which the UP as the premiere university is part, is roughly P23 billion short of their actual needs. “Instead of giving SUCs their proposed regular budget, the Aquino government has taken lightly the welfare of our SUC and even allocated zero budget for crucial items like Capital Outlay,” Palatino said. Palatino explained that under

the Aquino government, the budget for Capital Outlay (CO) of SUCs used for procurement of equipment and construction of buildings was reduced to zero. The UP system in 2010, for instance, has a P1.3 billion CO budget; it now suffers zero CO budget just like all the 112 SUCs in the country. Based on released reports, John O’Leary, a QS advisory board member, said that nations like Germany, Japan and South Korea have schools within the top rank largely due to

government funding and investments. He furthered that the result is the opposite for countries with less funding from the government. Kabataan Partylist, together with the Philippine Association of State Universities and Colleges (PASUC) and national youth organizations, have set September 19-23 as a national week of protests for higher budget for SUCs and other social services. ● Reprinted with permission from http://kabataanpartylist.com


5 • Kulê Balita

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

Palparan’s security aide denies involvement in Karen, She abduction Keith Richard D. Mariano The security aide of retired Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Major General Jovito Palparan, who has been linked to the abduction of UP students Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empeño, denied all charges filed against him by the mothers of the missing UP students. In the fourth preliminary hearing on the criminal charges filed against Palparan and five other military officials at the Department of Justice (DOJ) on August 31, Army Staff Sergeant Edgardo Osoria submitted a counter-affidavit denying charges of rape, serious physical injuries, arbitrary detention and maltreatment of prisoners. The mothers of Cadapan and

Empeño based their charges on eyewitness testimony by Wilfredo Ramos, owner of the house where Karen and Sherlyn were staying when they were abducted last June 2006 in Hagonoy, Bulacan. During the DOJ hearing on July 19, Ramos positively identified Osorio, who accompanied Palparan as part of the retired general’s security detail in the hearing, as one of the soldiers who reportedly abducted Cadapan and Empeño. After Ramos’ testimony, the mothers of the missing UP students filed an amended complaint on August 19 to include Osorio as respondent in the case. Aside from Palparan and Osorio, other respondents include lieutenant colonels Rogelio Boac and Felipe

Anotado; second lieutenants Fracis Mirabelle Samson and Arnel Enriquez; and master sergeant Rizal Hilario.

‘Weak alibi’

In his sworn statement, Osorio denied working under the command of Palparan in the 7th Infantry Division of the AFP, which reportedly carried out the abduction of Cadapan and Empeño. Osorio claimed that he had first met Palparan only when he was assigned as security aide of the retired general at the DOJ hearing on July 19. Also, the military records attached to the counter-affidavit showed that Osorio was on training at the AFP Peacekeeping Operations School in Cebu when Cadapan and Empeño were abducted in June 2006.

“[T]he allegations of the complainants are based on presumptions, suppositions, speculations and utter misrepresentation of facts,” said Osorio in his counter-affidavit. He added that Ramos —along with Alberto Ramirez, another witness and local farmer who also gave testimony corroborating Osorio’s role in the abduction — are on a “fishing expedition on their malicious imputations” “Everyone can say ‘I was here’ or ‘I was there’ but [the military document] still does not mean that [Osorio] was not involved in the abduction,” said Atty. Edre Olalia, legal counsel for the mothers of Cadapan and Empeño. Concrete evidence of Osorio’s involvement in the disappearance

of Cadapan and Empeño may not be available on military records because the abduction was a “covert operation,” explained Olalia. A positive identification by a reliable eyewitness is already “enough, clear and credible” to implicate Osorio in the abduction of the missing UP students, he added. “Mula taas hanggang baba, iisa ang napagkaisahan nila — denial sa lahat ng kabuktutan at kawalan ng hiya nila. Matibay na ang testimonya ng mga witness, sana naman gumising na ang ating hustisya nang maparusahan na ang may sala,” said Concepcion Empeño, mother of Karen. The complainants are set to file their reply to Osorio’s counteraffidavit before the DOJ panel of prosecutors during the next hearing on September 7.  ●

Does the Philippines need to change its constitution?

it does not sustain against international crises…I would be adamant or I would not support changes that would make it less protectionist.” -Student Regent Ma. Kristina Conti “Nasa usapin yan kung ano ba yung gusto mong baguhin talaga. Ano yung esensya ng gusto nating pagbabago? Ano nga ba yung tunguhin talaga? Kung sa usapin ng pag-unlad na siya naman pinangangalandakan ng ating mga mambabatas, hindi ako naniniwala na ito ang kasagutan para sa pagpapapunlad ng bansa. Baguhin na muna ang oryentasyon ng ating mga namumuno. Hindi naman kaila sa atin na hanggang sa kasalukuyan ay malakolonyal at malapyudal ang sistema ng ating lipunan. Habang ang ating ekonomiya ay nananatiling exportoriented, import-dependent, palagay ko ang mga pagbabagong ito ay magsisilbi lamang sa interes ng mga gusto pang manatili sa puder ng kapangyarihan tulad ng mga nagsusulong niyan. Kung ano man ang mga interes nilang yan, tiyak ako na hindi tunay na magbibitbit ng layunin ng tunay na pagpapaunlad ng mamamayan..” -Felix Pariñas, President, All UP Workers Union National “The provisions of the 1987 constitution which are supposed to protect economic sovereignty have never really stopped the imperialists from ravishing the Philippines’ national patrimony. Since the late 1980s, a number of economic laws have been enacted in compliance with policies imposed by the International Monetary Fund which sought, among others, to further open up the economy to the operations of foreign monopoly capitalists. In line with these policies, numerous laws have been passed which have made a mockery of the Philippine constitution.” -Communist Party of the Philippines*  ●

Replay

PLAYBACK Mila Polinar

PAGPINTA NG GUNITA. Upang gunitain ang Pandaigdigang Araw ng mga Nawawala, ipininta ng mga kamag-anak at kaibigan ng desaparecidos ang kanilang panawagang palitawin ang nawawala nilang mahal sa buhay sa Commonwealth Avenue, Quezon City noong Agosto 30. Airnel T. Abarra

When Gloria Arroyo proposed to amend the constitution in 2004, it was then sought as a “strategic hope for change.” Arroyo’s charter change was vehemently opposed, for people suspected that it would be used to extend Arroyo’s stay in power. Hence, during Arroyo’s last years in power, charter change was repeatedly brought up. Now, negotiations between the Philippine Republic and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have given rise to renewed interest in the possibilities of charter change. Calls to amend the constitution have surfaced, in order to fulfill MILF’s demand to form an autonomous substate. Indeed, the issue of charter change has long been debated. While some agree that the current constitution is in fact in need of amendments, such attempts can be mired with vested interests and hidden agenda. Amid all these, the principal question still remains:

“The Philippines needs to change its constitution but we have to be very careful about what kind of change we want. We might be changing for the worse and not for the better…I’m very interested of course if the changes are related to public finance and to accountabilities. But other groups would be interested in other kinds of changes…There are those who want to change the constitution to welcome foreign investors to own 100% property or 100% businesses; that is highly debatable. And there are those who want also reforms. I’m interested in reforming the financial system especially the accountability systems…There must be an interest for public discussion and everyone should be given to a chance to say their bit. Otherwise, we might be changing for the worse. We have to be careful because many groups are pushing their agenda for constitutional change.” -Prof. Leonor Briones, National College of Public Administration and Governance “It depends. The Philippine constitution already reflects the sentiments of the Filipino people after a dictatorship. Politically, I think the constitution is strong. However, economically, there are some provisions which are questionable. For example, ownership of land, ownership of industries and practice of profession. The citizenship requirement is 60% for Filipinos. It’s manageable, true. It’s majority Filipino. But in some countries which are similar to our circumstances, meaning, they are likewise semicolonial, agrarian in nature, with no national industries, they have a protective government. Our constitution is not likewise…The constitution as it is does not protect the Philippines in the international context. Instead of going the protectionist way as in other countries with a similar situation, it’s not what happens. The constitution tries to check internal contradictions but from what it appears,

*Taken from http://theprwcblogs.blogspot. com/2011/08/information-bureau-communistparty-of.html


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Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

Campus journalists slam planned closure of 2 student pubs Richard Damian

PAGHANGAD NG PAGLAYA. Nanawagan ang iba’t ibang grupo palayain ang dating Collegian Kultura editor na si Ericson Acosta at iba pang bilanggong pulitikal sa isang kilos-protesta sa Department of Justice (DOJ) sa Maynila noong Setyembre 1. Naghain ang National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers ng Petition for Review upang suriin ng DOJ ang kaso ni Acosta na halos pitong buwan nang nakakulong nang walang kaso. Airnel T. Abarra

NUPL asks DOJ to review detained cultural worker’s case

Ma. Katherine Elona Dianne Marah Sayaman

Lawyers of detained cultural worker Ericson Acosta filed a petition for review at the Department of Justice (DOJ) after the provincial court of Samar denied their Motion for Reconsideration (MFR) in a July 12 decision. The legal counsel of the accused, Attys. Edre Olalia, Julian Oliva, Jr. and Ephraim Cortez from the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers, petitioned for past resolutions on the illegal possession of explosives case to be “set aside” and for the dismissal of the complaint against Acosta. In the petition, Acosta’s counsel cited violations on human rights and arrest protocol as grounds for dismissing the case. The petition documented the violations, such as warrantless arrest, planted evidence and delayed turnover of the accused to the proper judicial authority. “The Philippine authorities must investigate these allegations and hold the perpetrators accountable,” Amnesty International said in a statement issued on August 12. The global human rights group also called for Acosta’s release.

Investigating Prosecutor Agustin Avalon noted in the July 12 court resolution that the points raised in Acosta’s MFR “need to be threshed out in a full blown trial.” Members of the 3rd Infantry Battalion of the Armed Forces of the Philippines arrested Acosta at San Jorge, Samar on February 13, on suspicion that he was a member of the armed group New People’s Army. He is currently detained in Calbayog City, Samar, and has been charged with illegal possession of explosives, a non-bailable case. Acosta claims he was arrested without knowledge of his crime, deprived of legal counsel, tortured and interrogated for 44 hours. “The respondent has claimed serious irregularities and violations of the law in his arrest, interrogation and detention,” the petition read. The military also failed to follow Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code which requires the transfer of respondent from his arresting officers to the proper judiciary authorities in less than 36 hours. Acosta was brought before the Gandara Regional Trial Court on February 16, 72 hours after he was arrested.

Avalon earlier reasoned in a resolution dated April 20 that the arrest was lawful according to the “presumption of regularity in the performance of official duty” done by the military. “In failing to resolve the other defenses/issues raised by respondent in his Counter Affidavit, the Investigating Prosecutor is conceding that indeed there was violation of respondent’s constitutional rights,” according to the petition. At the time of his arrest, Acosta was conducting a study on the human rights situation in Samar. He served as Kultura editor of the Philippine Collegian in the 1990s, and was one of the founding members of Alay Sining, a cultural mass organization in UP Diliman. In support of the clamor for the approval of the petition, members of the Free Ericson Acosta Campaign including National Commission on Culture and the Arts director Malou Jacob, gathered in front of the DOJ in September 1. “It is the task of the NCCA to protect artists and their rights,” Jacob said.●

The editorial boards and staff of the student publications of Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Muntinlupa (PLMun) and Taguig City University (TCU) have condemned plans of their school administrations to shut down their respective publications, denouncing the act as a “repression” of campus press freedom. In PLMun, the university administration is planning to shut down The Warden, the official student publication of the said university, and to dismiss its editorial board after publishing a criticism of President Benigno Aquino III’s second State of the Nation Address, said Terrie Padin, student-director of the publication. In TCU, meanwhile, the administration ordered the creation of a new student publication, effectively abolishing the official student publication of the university TCU Parola, according to the publication’s Editor-in-Chief Rose Gianne Orrola. To condemn the imminent closure of the two publications, members of various student publications led by the College of Editors Guild of the Philippines (CEGP), the nationwide alliance of tertiary student publications, launched a protest action at PLMun on August 23. “One of the most blatant forms of [campus press freedom] violations is the closing of the publication, totally disabling their operation and in effect assaulting not just the rights of the campus journalists but also attacking the students which they are supposed to serve,” according to CEGP.

Reform or repression?

The PLMun administration criticized The Warden’s headline “Ang Panggulo sa Ikalawang SONA,” published last July, as it showed “disrespect” to Aquino, said Aidalyn Bustamante, chairman of the investigation committee on the university paper. The said “unethical headline” prompted the administration to question the qualifications and academic standing of the editorial board, Bustamante added, explaining that the PLMun administration only wanted to institute “reform” in the publication, as the editorial board and staff of The Warden practiced

“irresponsible journalism.” “CEGP believes that it is the obligation of journalists to give criticism and opinion over issues that are matters of national concern and Aquino’s SONA is one of it. We criticize base on hard facts and principles as alternative press,” said CEGP-National Capital Region Secretary General Romina Astudillo in an August 23 statement. “Hindi kailanman dapat ituring na subersibo ang paglalabas ng ekspresyon at pagsasabi ng katotohanan. Ang pagpigil rito ay pagpatay na rin sa demokratikong karapatan ng mga estudyante at ng mga mamamayang Pilipino,” said Padin.

Withheld funds

In TCU, the school’s Office of Student Activities (OSA)reportedly decided to create a new student publication because Parola has not published any issue yet for the current academic year. TCU OSA Director Domingo Manimtim also ordered the editorial board and all staff to take the qualification exams of Journalism Society, which will supposedly replace Parola, said Orrola. However, the TCU administration is withholding the student paper’s funds, causing the delay in publication, Orrola explained. “We felt insulted. We are already established and we have our constitution and by-laws duly signed by the former OSA Chairman Mario C. Mangco. The members of TCU Parola have gone through rigorous qualification procedures and most of us are experienced,” added Orrola. CEGP has recorded more than 350 violations on campus press freedom including censorship, closure, and suspension of staff since the martial law years. “We intend to gather more cases and incident reports on campus press freedom violations and other forms of repression in schools. Accumulated cases will be presented to the Senate committee hearing on tertiary education to amplify our calls to end all forms of repression and pass propeople bills such as the Campus Press Freedom Act,” Astudillo said. ●


7 • Kulê Lathalain Joan C. Cordero Sunod-sunod ang mga tawag sa linya ng telepono sa telecommunications booth ng National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) sa Welfareville, Mandaluyong City. Karamihan sa mga tumatawag, humihingi ng tulong hinggil sa mga kamag-anak na may sakit sa pag-iisip. Kaya, bagaman nangangalahati pa lang ang araw, halos isang libong tawag na ang natanggap ni Arman Romualdo, sampung taong teleoperator sa NCMH. Karamihan sa mga tumatawag, hindi kaya ang gastusin sa mga pribadong mental hospital. “Maski pamasahe sa paghatid ng pasyente wala sila, kaya humihingi pa ng assistance sa barangay,” ani Mang Arman. Karamihan sa mga pasyente ng NCMH ay mula sa Metro Manila at mga kalapit na probinsya. Nahahati sa dalawa ang klasipikasyon ng mga pasyente sa NCMH: charity at pay patients. Nasa kategoryang charity ang karamihan sa mga pasyente, kung saan P80 ang binabayaran para sa board and lodging, doktor at gamot bawat araw habang P19,500 naman ang ibinabayad ng mga pay patient kada buwan. “Treatment of about 87% of in-patients, belonging to classes C and D, are subsidized by NCMH,” ayon sa pamunuan ng ospital. Itinayo noong 1928, isa ang NCMH sa mga programa ng Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) na nasa iisang compound na tinawag na Welfareville. Nang ipagkaloob ang lupang kinatitirikan ng Welfareville sa mga Pilipino noong 1920, pinaghati-hatian ito ng iilang mayayamang pamilya. Mga kaanak at kaibigan ni dating Pangulong Ferdinand Marcos ang mga nanirahan dito noong 1960s. Dito sa 110 ektaryang lupa ng Welfareville nakatirik ang NCMH, Correctional Institute for Women, mga pampublikong gusali gaya ng paaralan, at kabahayan.

Sa puso ng Maynila

Ayon sa World Health Organization (WHO), nararapat magkaroon ng mental hospital sa bawat rehiyon. Ngunit sa Pilipinas, isa lamang ang

Huwebes 8 Setyembre2011 NCMH sa dalawang pampublikong mental hospital sa bansa. Kabilang ito sa 12 ospital na pinatatakbo ng DOH na nakatatanggap ng eklusibong pondo kada taon. Ngunit hindi umano sapat para sa 1,700 manggagawa at 6, 300 pasyente ang taunang badyet na P1 bilyon. “Hindi tulad ng ibang ospital, hindi kami nakakapag-pick-up ng pasyente mula sa kanilang bahay, kulang kasi sa sasakyan,” ani Mang

kanilang pinagmulan, ngunit kulang o ‘di kaya’y wala pang mental health center sa lahat ng rehiyon sa bansa. Dapat ring magbayad ng “disturbance fee” ang DOH para sa paglilipat ng mga pasyente sa ibang lugar.

Laylayan

Sa karanasan pa lamang sa NCMH, halatang wala sa prayoridad ng gobyerno ang usapin ng kalusugan,

Tantos ng kakulangan Uri ng Pasilidad Public Mental Hospital Out-patient Facilities Day Treatment Community-based psych in-patient Community residential facilities

Bilang 2 46 4 19 15

Pamantayang dami kada 100, 000 katao 5.57 beds 124.3 users 4.42 users 1.58 beds 0.61 beds

Sanggunian: World Health Organization - Assessment Instrument for Mental Health Systems, 2010

Arman. Kanya-kanyang diskarte umano ang pagdadala ng pasyente sa ospital. Sa halip na punan ang kakulangan, napagdesisyunan na lamang ng Welfare Development Project na binubuo ng DSWD, pamahalaan ng Mandaluyong at Department of Finance na ipagbili ang lupang kinatitirikan ng NCMH sa taong 2016. At gaya ng mga komersyal na lupain sa paligid nito, tatayuan umano ang Welfareville ng medium-rise buildings, socialized housing, at mga negosyo ng Filinvest, Ayala, at Robinsons. Binalak nang ipagbili ang lupa noong 1997 at 2003, subalit nabigo itong mabenta bunsod ng kakulangan sa rekisito ng mga investor. Sakaling matuloy ang pagbebenta, ililipat ang NCMH sa Brgy. Inaraoan, Antipolo, Rizal. “Napakalayo ng Inaraon dito… kung pamasahe nga papunta dito, hirap na ‘yung mga tao, paano pa kaya kung nandoon kami?” ani Mang Arman. Humigit kumulang 25 kilometro ang layo ng Brgy. Inaraoan sa Antipolo sa Mandaluyong City. Bukod sa layo, problema din ang mismong lawak ng lupang paglilipatan. “Sampung ektarya lang ang lupa doon kumpara sa higit 40 ektarya ng lupa dito. Saan ilalagay ang ibang mga pasyente at manggagawa?” ani Manuel Bacanto, tatlong dekada nang administrative staff. Kapag nilipat na ang ospital, itatalaga umano ang ilang manggagawa sa mga ospital ng rehiyong kanilang tinitirhan. Ang mga pasyente naman, ipapasa sa rehiyong

lalo sa aspeto ng mental health. Kung kaya, dahil sa kakulangan sa mental health center, hindi natatamo ang isa sa mga karapatang pantao, ayon sa World Health Organization (WHO). “Health, which is the state of complete physical, mental, and social well being, and not merely the absence of disease…is a fundamental human right and [it’s] attainment…is a most important worldwide social goal,” saad nito. Kinikilala maging ng konstitusyon ng Pilipinas ang responsibilidad ng estado na pangalagaan ang kalusugan ng mamamayan. Bagaman may

ganitong probisyon, kalakhan pa rin sa mamamayan, wala man lang pambili ng gamot sa sakit. Anim sa sampung Pilipino ang namamatay nang hindi nakakapagpakonsulta sa doktor. Halos walumpung libong sanggol naman ang namamatay nang hindi man lang napagagamot ang sakit. Ganito ang turing ng pamahalaan sa usapin ng mental health kahit na minsan nang itinalagang pangatlo ang sakit sa pag-iisip sa mga pangunahing karamdaman ngayong dekada,, ulat ng National Statistics Office. Napagalaman naman noong 2005 na isa sa bawat limang Pilipino ang nakakaranas ng ganitong sakit, ayon sa DOH. Upang matugunan umano ang pangangailangan ng sektor ng kalusugan, itinaas nang P10 bilyon ang badyet ng DOH para sa 2012. Ngunit hindi ito lubusang nagamit sa pagpapaunlad ng serbisyong pangkalusugan, ani Dr. Gene Nisperos ng Health Alliance for Democracy (HEAD). Bahagya mang tumaas ang badyet, wala pa ring inilaan para sa capital outlay na ginagamit para sa pagpapagawa ng mga gusali at pasilidad. Sa halip, nakalaan ang kalakhan ng badyet para sa pagbabago ng PhilHealth Law, kung saan gagawing mandatory ang pagkakaroon ng PhilHealth card na nagkakahalagang P1,500 bawat isa. Nakalaan din sa

Kuha ni Chris Imperial Disenyo ng pahina ni Roanne Descallar

public-private partnerships (PPP) ang malaking porsyento ng pondo na naglalayong pagsamahin ang pampubliko at pribadong ospital. Naghihingalo na nga ang sektor ng kalusugan sa bansa, ibebenta pa ang iilang natitirang lupa na kinatitirikan ng mga pampublikong ospital, ani Dr. Nisperos. Aniya, hindi umano nararapat ipagbili ang mga pampublikong lupa para sa mga pribadong gusali at serbisyo tulad nang nais gawin sa NCMH sa darating na 2016. “Business is anathema to health… hindi dapat pagkakitaan ang kalusugan dahil may conflict of interests, lives were reduced into profit,” dagdag niya. Naghahalo umano ang negosyo at serbisyong panlipunan sa ilalim ng PPP. Dahil dito, nagkakaroon ng presyo ang dapat sana’y libreng serbisyo. Unti-unti mang kinakaligtaan ng gobyerno ang mga serbisyong pangkalusugan, patuloy pa rin ang pagtanggap ng tawag at pagdagsa ng mga pasyente sa NCMH. Bagaman mga may sakit sa isip ang mga pasyenteng tinatanggap ng NCMH, tila lalong mas malala ang sakit ng mga taong pilit naglalayo sa serbisyong nararapat sanang maibigay sa nangangailangan. ●


10 • Kulê Kultura

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

CLASS STRUGGLE

Acads, acads, puro na lang acads! May buhay pa ba sa labas ng eskwela? Hanapin ang mga aral na hindi lang pang-akademya, pang-tunay na buhay pa. Ito ang youngbladder ng Kule, kung saan pinapuputok ang mga kontradiksyon at isyung nagkakabuhay sa espasyo ng mga paaralan.

Raise your hand* Dibuho ni Luigi Almuena Disenyo ng pahina ni Kel Almazan

Roma Jean Araullo Ang iingay ng mga tibak ‘no? Pikon na pikon sa kanila si Ser noong isang araw. Mas malakas pa ang sigawan ng mga tibak sa labas kaysa sa boses niya. Budget cut sa SUCs, tutulan, labanan, huwag pahintulu—uy Ser nandyan ka pala. Hinintay muna ni Ser na lumipas ang ingay, bago bumwelo ng: “Wala namang budget cut sa UP.” Napataas tuloy ako ng isang kilay. Weh, di nga? Wala sa ating nagsalita noon, maliban sa isa nating kaklase na humirit ng “Hindi naman tayo apektado, ang lakas nating magreklamo.” Kinalabit ko siya at sumenyas ako ng “pakyu” gamit ang daliri. Pero siyempre biro lang. Sa isip ko lang ‘yun—wala nga akong lakas ng loob na magtaas ng kamay para sumagot sa mga tanong ni Ser, paano pa kaya ang harapang makipag-away. Kaya sa halip na magsalita, dyaryo agad ang hinanap ko pagkatapos ng klase. Mula P5.75 bilyon, P5.54 bilyon na lang ang mapupunta sa UP sa susunod na taon. Simpleng math lang ang gamit ko—subtraction. At ang aking hatol, pasintabi kay Ser: may budget cut nga. Umaasa akong sana hindi lang ako ang nagbasa’t naghanap ng datos matapos ang meeting na iyon.

Mag-aaral tayong lahat ng UP kaya likas sa atin ang pagiging kritikal at mapagsiyasat. Mahilig tayong magtanong—may budget cut nga ba sa UP o wala—at hindi tayo titigil hangga’t tiyak na tayo sa sagot. Hindi naman ito subjective na tanong sa essay writing; dual choice ito at objective, kaya may tama at may mali.

Simpleng math lang ang gamit ko—subtraction. At ang aking hatol, pasintabi kay Ser: may budget cut nga. Ngunit tila kuntento na ang iba sa atin sa sinasabi ni Ser. O baka naman ayaw lang natin kumampi sa mga nakakairitang kabataang nakapula. Baka mapasubo tayo at maparali— pustahan, marami sa atin ang hindi game magbabad sa init o magpaulan sa gitna ng kalsada. Tsaka sino nga naman ang hindi uurong sa pahamak na madale ng batuta ng pulis o masapul ng water cannon na tubig-kanal ang binubuga.

Marami pa tayong dahilan para mag-alangang sumali sa mga rali’t mobilisasyon. Sabi nga ni Ser, na sinegundahan naman ng marami sa atin, mahina mangumbinsi ang mga tibak. Mukhang mahirap nga naman talagang manghikayat, lalo na kung sinasalungat sila ng mga prof na sagisag ng karunungan. Kapag sumang-ayon tayo kay Ser, hindi na mahirap ipaliwanag sa iba ang napili nating panig. Saang college ka man pumunta, laging mas maraming bibilib sa “sabi ng prof ko” kaysa sa “sabi nu’ng tibak sa AS.” Sa klase natin, pinupuna ang kawalang-kaalaman ng marami sa mga tibak. Tingin yata natin sa kanila, databank o Google na alam ang lahat at hindi pwedeng magkamali. Nakakalimutan nating mga estudyante rin sila gaya natin, na hindi pa kumpleto ang pag-aaral. Sabi nga ng kaibigan kong tibak, hindi nasasaid ang kagustuhang mag-aral ng isang tunay na aktibista. Taliwas sa sinabi ni Ser, madalas kong makita ang mga tibak na nag-aaral—nagbabasa’t nakikipagtalastasan sila sa labas ng klasrum. Kaya lagi silang may mga educational discussion, at mahilig silang mag-umpukan sa AS, sa Vinzons at sa kung saan pang sahig sa UP.

Walang entrance exam para maging aktibista, walang nagtitimbang kung marami ba silang alam o gusto lang nilang maghanap ng low-maintenance friends. Kahit naman siguro mga tibak, may mga sariling tanong at agam-agam din. Ngunit sa halip na magduda’t mag-alinlangan, mas pinipili nilang tumugon sa pangangailangan. Sa totoo lang, hindi ko magawang tuluyang makipagtunggalian kay Ser dahil ako mismo, hindi kayang gawin ang ginagawa ng mga tibak. Hindi nila iniinda ang stigma na kaakibat ng pagsigaw sa kalye at pagtaas ng kaliwang kamay sa halip na kanan tuwing inaawit ang UP Naming Mahal. Pagtaas nga lang ng kamay sa klase, hindi ko magawa. Ano pa kaya ‘yung mula bahay hanggang klasrum, pinagtatawanan at hinuhusgahan dahil lang naiiba ang paniniwala nila sa nakasanayan. Minsan pa nga, hindi sila pinapansin ng mga propesor sa klase, o kaya’y binabara ang lahat ng sinasabi’t ginagawa nila, kahit simpleng pagkanta ng “to the left, to the left” ni Beyonce. At tuwing magyayaya sila para sa mga mobilisasyon, mangilang-beses silang mapagsasarhan ng pinto, hindi papapasukin at pauulanan ng batikos sa harap ng mga estudyante. Minsan,

kahit mga propesor, nagiging dahilan kung bakit sa halip na makapag-ipon ng lakas ng loob, naduduwag tayong harapin ang mga katotohanang hindi naman natin maitanggi. Napansin ko nga, marami sa inyo ang tumatango-tango habang pinupuna ni Ser ang walang saysay na ingay ng mga tibak. Hindi ko mawari kung talaga bang naniniwala kayo sa kanya, o sumasang-ayon kayo sa kahit sinong propesor na nasa harap ninyo. Maaari rin siyempre na nagpapanggap lang kayong nakikinig (gaya ko) o sadyang natatakot lang na kontrahin si Ser (gaya ko rin). Pero hindi naman ako nanghuhusga. At karamihan naman sa atin ay tahimik lang sa klaseng iyon, liban sa ilang madalas magpahayag ng pagsangayon kay Ser. Dalawang beses sa isang linggo ko man kayo makasama, hindi ko naman talaga kayo tunay na kilala. Maraming beses na tinatanong ko ang sarili ko, ilan kaya kayong tulad ko na laging pinangungunahan ng kaba? Sa ilang pagkakataon, gusto kong bumalikwas, sumama sa mga matagal nang sumisigaw para sa ating lagi na lang pinipiling manahimik. Sarili lang naman ang kalaban ko—nag-iipon ng tapang at nakikiramdam, tinatantya na sana, marami akong kasama.  ● *para sa aking mga kaklase


11 • Kulê Kultura

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

GROUND ZERO NG MEMORYA Pagbuo ng gunita mula sa mga guho ng 9/11 J. D. Fajarda “Memory is a territory no parliament has claimed. Soon bulldozers will come and our stories will bleed through the porous edges of the remembered world.” - Eric Gamalinda The Remembered World

“Because you divide us from our history...*”

Sa panahon ng global media, ang atake sa Twin Towers ay namalas sa iba’t ibang panig ng mundo, bagay na nagpalawak at nagpatindi sa epekto ng 9/11. Bitbit ang ispektakulo ng mga imahe ng 9/11, naging instrumental ang midya para siguraduhing hindi natin malilimutan ang malagim na pagatakeng kumitil sa may 3,000 katao. Sa pamamagitan ng tribute songs para sa mga biktima, mga eksibisyon ng mga larawang kuha mula sa Ground Zero, mga monumento, tula, nobela at pelikula, naikikintal sa kamalayan natin ang gimbal ng 9/11. Nililikha nito ang tinatawag na “social memory”—kung saan ang midya at iba pang institusyon ang gumagawa ng gunitang ipinupunla sa memorya ng mga mamamayan. Sa ganitong paraan, naididikta ng midya kung ano at paano dapat alalahanin ang isang spectacular na pangyayari tulad ng 9/11. Bilang paggunita sa ika-limang anibersaryo ng 9/11 noong 2006, itinanghal ang mga pelikulang United 93 ni Paul Greengrass at World Trade Center ni Oliver Stone. Kapwa tinalakay ng dalawang pelikula ang kabayanihan at katatagan ng mga biktima ng 9/11 sa harap ng kamatayan. Ayon sa manunulat na si Joan Didion, sa labis na pagpokus umano ng midya sa

pagpaparangal sa kabayanihan ng mga biktima, naisasantabi ang kahulugan at konteksto ng 9/11. Dagdag pa ni Didion, kinakasangkapan ang ganitong pag-a-idealize sa 9/11 para bigyang katwiran ang isinusulong ng US na “global war on terror” na isa umanong “perpetual war.”

“...and install a thousand checkpoints in between.*”

“[T]he world is fertile with remembering, subversive with desire...*”

*mula sa tulang Amigo Warfare ni Eric Gamalinda, Pilipinong manunulat na naka-base sa New York City D

on

Samantala, dahil nilikha lamang ang namamayaning memorya ng 9/11, maaaring hamunin ang alaalang ito. Sa dokumentaryo ni Michael Moore na Fahrenheit 9/11, inilantad niya ang paggamit ng

administrasyong Bush sa gunita ng 9/11 para isulong ang digmaan sa Gitnang Silangan para makontrol ang industriya ng langis sa rehiyon. Tugma ito sa sinabi ni Didion na desidido na raw lusubin ng US ang Iraq para puksain si Saddam Hussein bago pa maganap ang 9/11. Ayon naman sa yumaong manunulat na si Susan Sontag, hindi atake sa “free world” ang 9/11. Sa halip, konsekwensya umano ang 9/11 ng pangkalahatang palisiyang panlabas ng US partikular sa Gitnang Silangan. Sa kabilang banda, ang mga imahe ng mga biktima ng “global war on terror” ang ikinukubling gunita sa nakaraang dekada. Umaabot na sa halos isang milyon ang mga nasawi sa gera sa Afghanistan at Iraq. Bahid naman sa imahe ng US bilang tagapagtaguyod ng demokrasya ang patuloy na pag-iral ng US military prison sa Guatanamo Bay kung saan talamak ang tortyur at ang paglabag sa karapatang pantao ng mga suspek pa lamang na mga terorista. Samantala, tinatayang aabot sa $2 hanggang 5 trilyon ang naging halaga ng gera kontra terorismo, at sinasabing ugat ng kasalukuyang krisis sa utang ng US. Sa darating na Setyembre 11, 2011, ibubudyong na parang medalya ang mga ipinanagumpayan ng gera kontra terorismo: ang pagbitay kay Saddam Hussein at ang pagkapaslang kay bin Laden. Samantala, sa iba’t ibang sulok ng mundo, nagpapatuloy ang karahasang ipinunla ng gunita ng digma. ●

uh

iN ico

Hindi ito nalalayo sa pagtingin ng Slovenian na intelektwal na si Slavoj Zizek. Ayon kay Zizek, ang pag-asulto sa atin ng ispektakulo ng 9/11 ay pagsanay sa mamamayan ng mundo sa isang “permanent state of emergency.” Lagi’t laging ipinaaalala sa atin ng midya na nagbago na ang mundong kinagisnan natin bunsod ng 9/11. Sinasabay natin sa pandesal at kape sa almusal ang balita sa radyo na may dinukot ang Abu Sayyaf na mga turista o dayuhang misyonero. Laman ng mga kuwentuhan sa lunch break ang mga salitang “terorismo” at “terorista.” At kasalo natin sa hapunan ang primetime balita ng pambobomba hindi lamang sa Iraq at Afghanistan, ngunit maging sa London at Barcelona, Mindanao at Maynila. Sa daigdig ng post-9/11, wala nang ligtas na lugar. Naging normal at katanggaptanggap na sa atin ang presensya ng Tropang Kano sa Mindanao, ang pangangapkapkap at panghahalughog sa mga dalahin natin sa tuwing pumapasok sa mga establisyimento, sa mga istasyon ng MRT at LRT, at terminal ng bus, sa mga mall at airport. May bigat at sinseridad na kapag binibitiwan natin ang salitang “ingat” sa tuwing nagpapaalam sa mga kamag-anak

at kaibigan. Tila ang 9/11 ay isang hakbang lang paglabas ng bahay. Indikasyon ang ganitong paranoia sa pang-araw-araw na gawain na nakamit ang layunin ng terorismo na maghasik ng takot. Ngunit makikitang ang estado ang nakikinabang sa takot na ito. Ang pangambang maulit ang nangyari sa 9/11 ang nagtulak sa mabilis na pagsasabatas ng US Congress ng Patriot Act gayong maraming probisyon ng batas na ito ang lalabag sa mga karapatang pantao. Isinasantabi ng batas na ito ang mga karapatang sibil partikular ng mga migranteng pinagsusupetsahang terorista kahit na walang sapat na batayan. Ang takot ng iba pang mga bansa na matulad sa sinapit ng New York ang humimok sa mga gobyerno na gumawa ng mga kawangis na batas tulad ng Human Security Act na kamakailan lang ay pinagtibay ng Korte Suprema ng Pilipinas. Pinahihintulutan ng mga batas na ito ang paniniktik at paglabag sa privacy ng mga indibidwal. Nagagamit rin ang mga palisiyang ito para sikilin ang karapatan maging ng mga grupong lehitimong nagsusulong ng pagbabago.

ib V illa

rete | DIsenyo ng pahina

Hindi sumasapat sa atin ang alaala. Madalas, kinakailangan natin ng materyal na katumbas ng pangyayaring ginugunita natin— regalo sa birthday, souvenir t-shirt mula sa bakasyon sa Baguio, bulaklak tuwing undas, mga peklat ng ating kabataan, larawan ng reunion ng barkada, graduation song noong hayskul. Patunay na naganap ang mga pangyayaring nasa memorya natin at hindi kathang-isip lang ang mga bagay na ating nakikita, naaamoy, nasasalat at naririnig. Sa paggunita ng US, at ng buong mundo, sa ika-10 anibersaryo ng pag-atake sa mga simbolo ng kapangyarihan ng self-proclaimed na superpower sa Setyembre 11, 2011, na mas kilala sa tawag na 9/11, iba’t ibang mga bagay ang nililikha bilang paraan ng pag-alala: monumento ng Twin Towers sa Israel, pagsasapelikula ng 9/11-themed na nobelang Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close ni Jonathan Safran Foer, at mga symposium at publikasyon sa loob at labas ng akademya na tumatalakay sa epekto ng 9/11 sa daigdig natin ngayon. Para sa pamahalaang US, ang pinaka-ispesyal na paraan para bigyang parangal hindi lamang ang alaala ng mga biktima ng pag-atake kundi mas lalong higit ang ego nitong niyurakan ay ang bangkay ni Osama bin Laden na itinapon sa dagat. Ilang buwan bago ang ika-10 taon ng 9/11, napaslang si bin Laden sa operasyong militar sa Abbotabad, Pakistan.

Nais ibalik ng mga bagay na ito sa gunita natin ang imahe ng pagsalpok ng eroplano sa Twin Towers isang malagim na umaga ng Martes, Setyembre 11, 2001, sa pusod ng New York City.

ni K el A l

ma zan


12 • Kulê Kultura

ABSWELTO

Mary Joy T. Capistrano The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons. -Fyodor Dostoevsky Sa loob ng New Bilibid Prison (Bilibid), inaasahang matututo ang mga preso sa kanilang mga pagkakamali. Ipinatitimo sa mga bilanggo ang mga saligang prinsipyo ng lipunan habang sila ay nakakulong. Ang matagal na pagkakahiwalay sa pamilya at sa lipunan ang umano’y parusa sa kanila— at nawa, matapos ang sentensya, hindi na sila umulit pa. Ito ang layunin ng isang kulungan: burahin ang lumang mga gawain mula sa kanilang sistema at ihandang ibalik sa lipunan. Ito ang dapat na mamalas sa likod ng mga nagtataasang pader ng malapalasyong istrukturang Bilibid. Dito matatagpuan ang maximum security compound, kung saan nakapiit ang mga presong hinatulan ng 20 taon pataas at mga panghabambuhay na pagkakabilanggo. Nakapiit dito ang humigitkumulang na 18,000 na mga preso mula sa iba’t ibang bahagi ng Pilipinas— ang kalahati ng kabuuang bilang sa bansa.

PERA AT PARUSA SA BILIBID

Sa pagpasok pa lamang ng compound, mababatid ng tagos sa pader ng kulungan ang pagkakahati-hati ng mga tao sa lipunan batay sa kanilang materyal na kayamanan. Makikita na agad kung aling grupo ang nakatataas kung pagbabatayan ang pagiging magara ng kanilang kubol at mga pasilidad katulad ng plaza, basketball court, videoke at marami pang iba.

‘Royalty award’

Pinahihintulutan ang mga mayayaman at maykayang preso na boluntaryong ipagawa ang mga kubol at ipaayos ang mga pasilidad ayon sa kanilang nais. Lumalabas na sponsor ang mga bilanggong nagbibigay ng sariling pera para sa pagpapaayos ng mga pasilidad. Katumbas ng salaping inilagak ng sponsor sa pagpapaayos ng pasilidad, nagkakaroon siya ng pribilehiyong palawakin ang kanyang sakop sa pamamagitan ng kanyang kubol, o ang kanyang kwarto sa loob ng dormitoryo. Maaari din siyang maglagay ng mga kagamitan katulad ng TV, DVD, aircon at marami pang iba na ikatitiwasay ng pamumuhay sa loob ng bilangguan. Kumportable siyang namumuhay bilang preso, malayo sa kadalasan nating napapanood na imahe ng bilanggo sa telebisyon. Ngunit hindi lamang maalwang pamumuhay ang dulot ng isang kubol— binibigyan rin nito ng kapangyarihan ang sinumang nagmamay-ari rito. Karaniwang naluluklok bilang “mayor,” ang tawag sa mga pinuno ng mga gang at grupo sa “loob,” ang mga presong mayaman at maimpluwensiya. Bawat isa sa 13 grupo sa maximum security compound ay pinamumunuan ng mayor. Diskarte ng bawat grupo, sa pangunguna ng mayor, kung paano nila

aayusin ang kanilang teritoryong sakop. Pera at kapangyarihan ang pangunahing dahilan upang mapasunod ang iba pang mga preso. Bilang mayor, sa kanya nakasalalay ang ikagaganda ng kanilang teritoryo sa pamamagitan ng pagdadagdag ng pasilidad para sa kanilang libangan at iba pang pangangailangan.

Sakop ng kaharian

Umiiral ang ganitong sistema sa loob dahil magkahalo ang mga uring nakapiit sa Bilibid—hindi umano kinikilala ng batas ang katayuan ng tao sa pagpaparusa. Gayunpaman, lumalabas na nakatali pa rin ang pagpapatupad ng batas sa usapin ng pera. Hindi sapat ang budget ng Bilibid para tugunan ang pangunahing pangangailangan ng mga preso, ani Gaudencio Pangilinan, ang bagong direktor ng Bilibid. Dahilan rin umano ang malaking bilang ng populasyon kaya’t kulang ang mga suplay at nagkakaroon ang mga preso ng iba’t ibang uri ng sakit. “Congestion problem causes the respiratory ailments. We also have the problem on waste disposal and sanitation,” ani Pangilinan. Ayon sa Department of Budget and Management, tinatayang P745 milyon ang natanggap ng Bilibid ngayong taon para sa budget sa Operations and Custody, Maintenance and Rehabilitation at Implementation of agro-industries ng Bureau of Corrections, na diretsong inilalaan sa batayang pangangailangan ng mga preso. Lumalabas na P 115 ang inilalaang budget ng gobyerno kada preso para sa isang araw. At habang dumarami ang mga bilanggo, hindi naman lumalawak ang 551-ektaryang lupang nasasakop

ng Bilibid. Ayon sa bagong direktor, pag-aari na ngayon ng National Housing Authority ang 300 ektaryang lupa ng Bilibid. Nagkakasya na lamang na parang mga sardinas ang 11,000 mga preso sa maximum security bagaman 5,000 katao lang ang kapasidad ng lugar.

Utos ng hari

Kabaliktaran ng komportableng pamumuhay ng hari ang nararanasan ng mga kasamahan niyang preso, kung saan tila mga sardinas silang nagkakasya sa maliliit na kwarto o di kaya’y barong-barong na gawa sa kakarampot na kahoy. “As in any place on earth and in heaven, they are not all the same. There are angels, and there are [those] higher than angels,” ani dating Zamboanga del Norte Rep. Romeo Jalosjos sa isang interbyu. Labindalawang taong nakulong si Jalosjos sa Bilibid bunsod ng kasong statutory rape. Sa loob ng kulungan, pare-pareho lang ang mga preso na nakagawa ng kasalanan sa lipunan ngunit nananatili ang hindi pagkakapantay-pantay sa mayaman at mahirap. Nakabatay sa pagkakasala ng mga preso ang tagal ng kanilang ilalagi sa bilangguan. Magkaganunman, napapagaan ang pagdurusa ng ilang mayayaman sa pagkakaroon ng kumportableng pamumuhay gamit ang kanilang pera. Nagagamit din nila ang kanilang kapangyarihan para pagsilbihin para sa kanilang interes ang mahihihirap na preso. Ang hindi pagkapantay-pantay na ito, kung tutuusin, ay nagsimula bago pa man sila makulong at mapatunayang may sala. Sa pagdinig pa lang ng mga kaso, hindi na pantay ang tsansa ng may kaya at ng wala para makakuha ng paborableng hatol. At

Mga litrato ni Kit Difuntorum | Dibuho nina RD Aliposa at Richard Dy | Disenyo ng pahina ni Kel Almazan

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011 kung masentensyahan man ang isang makapangyarihang tao, na nagagawa nilang pagaanin ang kanilang kaparusahan sa loob ng bilangguan sa pamamagitan ng kaniyang salapi. Ayon kay Michel Foucault, ginamit ang mga bilangguan bilang paraan ng pagpaparusa kapalit ng sinaunang pagpaparusa sa mga nagkasala sa lipunan sa pamamagitan ng pagpaparusa sa harap ng publiko sa porma ng pagtortyur o ng pagpatay. Mas mabisa umano ang pagbibilanggo kung saan mas pantay na naipapataw ng estado ang kapangyarihan nitong magparusa sa mga nagkakasala. Ngunit batay sa kalagayan ngayon sa Bilibid, nanatili pa rin ang hindi pantay na pagtingin sa mga preso. Nananatiling espesyal ang trato sa mga may kaya at may kapangyarihan samantalang napakababa ng pagtingin sa mga mahihirap. Habang nakatali sa kalakaran ng pera, unti-unting lumalabnaw ang tunay na konsepto ng batas at hustisya. Pera at kapangyarihan na ang nagtatakda ngkaparusahan sa loob ng BIlibid—gaya ng pagtatakda nito sa kalayaang tatamasain ng mga taong nasa labas ng kulungan. ●


13 • Kulê Kultura

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

Harsh Tags

The logic of hating in cyberspace

Stealth attacks

Despite being strangers to each

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fostered in cyberspace.

an in

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Despite being social media, Twitter and Facebook are often used by individuals as personal diaries. In these webpages, people are forgiven for incessantly talking about themselves—sometimes, they are even encouraged by the supposed unlimited freedom of the internet. Individuals living in a highly competitive and individualistic society are difficult to organize. Yet sometimes, there arises

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Building an army

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Perhaps the most recent and prominent victim of the online hate craze is Christopher Lao, the UP Law graduate who was caught on camera as he drove straight into a flooded street in Quezon City. When news of his mishap was featured in a primetime news program, Lao became an instant online celebrity. At one point, a Facebook page dedicated to Christopher Lao reached a record of more than 60,000 likes, and Lao himself landed in the top ten of the worldwide trend in Twitter. The news segment on Lao was only a couple of minutes long, but the interest it generated in the cyberworld extended for weeks after its television debut. The advent of technology has certainly enriched public discourse on social issues. Dubbed as a tool of democracy, the internet empowers people to comment publicly on any issue they like. This certainly fuels the hype, for social commentary before the advent of the internet was limited—influence, power and wealth were crucial in making a public statement. The only venues available then were newspapers, television and radio. In these media, being anybody rarely suffices to be given column space or air time. The free and fast exchange of information in the age of the internet allows for issues to spread like wildfire. The open information highway also eases the entry of personal opinions into public knowledge. With a simple click, a person’s rants could be read by a faceless audience.

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Armed and informed

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flaws of human nature.

Alip

The netizens have drawn their arms. Tweets are wounding egos with vile and lashing words. Facebook posts are dropping emoticon-bombs, rattling cyberspace with intense emotional explosions. Blogs have declared war, and the netizens’ battle cry could not be clearer. The enemy: their fellow erring humans. These past months, the online community has reacted harshly to flashes of negligence and audacious acts against social conventions broadcasted in mass media. Those who are guilty of such crimes have had hate pages on Facebook, hate mails, and have been the subject of ridicule in online forums. People are annoyed, amused and awed by the outstanding

other, internet users appear to have formed themselves into an army of critics against Lao, the controversial artist Mideo Cruz, and others whose errors have been magnified by media reportage. With thousands declaring their disdain for people like Lao, individual online haters cannot be easily identified. They seem to hide under a cloak of anonymity, which entices people to be more aggressive in their posts. Though Facebook and Twitter require people to submit personal data, these popular social media can be easily manipulated to hide information. Users can always tweak their privacy settings, or create online personas based on bogus information. Even if these users do divulge details of their offline identities, the arena of battle still precludes genuine interaction between the target of ridicule and the online hating community. The internet is not a physical space where people can directly attack each other. Within this realm, people are disembodied and the attacks here are confined to exchanges of words and images. The most that these clashes can produce is a seemingly stronger and unified public reaction to a certain issue. In Cruz’s situation, the reaction of the online community only served to validate the perception generated by the media coverage of the ruckus over his installation at the Cultural Center of the Philippines. The negativity surrounding Cruz was amplified by the thousands who retweeted or posted about him and his work—people who may or may not have seen Cruz’s work for themselves. Individual users are often found joining online groups whose actions defy the notions of decorum and propriety that govern their individual lives. This cohesion of internet users for a single cause is unexpected, given the anonymity and individualism

Dibuho ni RD

Dianne Marah Sayaman

an event, need or phenomenon that pulls these people together. In the case of online users uniting against Lao, Cruz, among others, the individual found a common cause that enables him/her to identify with others: the itch to ridicule a specific person. This online cause, premised on very superficial circumstances, hint at the profile of the average online hater. He/ she is usually a member of the middle-class, who constantly needs personal validation to believe that he/she still occupies a stable position in society. Such a process induces him/her to compete with others and find ways to establish his/her superiority—even in the most trivial of things. The middle-class looks for avenues to flaunt its better position, and this is the desire that bonds strangers in the internet. However, these bonds are of a libidinal nature and can be easily broken, says psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud. When these erring people become yesterday’s news, the thrill and relevance of bashing them fizzes out. A new artificial way of bonding disconnected people will be sought—maybe in the next guy who drives into the flood, or the girl who stutters while speaking in English. It is impossible, however, to ignore what the online hate craze demonstrates: people are unconsciously looking for ways to connect with other people. This human need and want for collectivism is not necessarily new. Freud posits that desires are usually suppressed; thus, the desire to belong to a group may be a buried personal trait for the netizens. After all, the issues hounding them outside Facebook and Twitter are sufficiently daunting— inadequate government subsidy for social services, unjust wages, and the prevalence of social inequality. In a world where collective action is met with state violence, people are understandably attracted to the freedom, anonymity and semblance of organization in the cyberworld. But when these armies of online haters find a worthy cause to fight for, the battle lines will be drawn beyond the confines of the online realm. ●


14 • Kulê Opinyon

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

WAIS NA COMMUTER

NEWSCAN

Makatwirang pagtataka Sabi ng isang kanta, inosente lang raw ang nagtataka. Siguro inosente pa ako, dahil hanggang ngayon, hindi ko alam kung saan nanggagaling ang mga numerong hawak ng mga kumpanya ng langis para tuloy-tuloy na magtaas ng presyo. Ang tanging paliwanag na naririnig ko sa balita, sa tuwing may nagrereklamong mga driver at napipilitan sumagot ang mga kumpanya, ay isang simple ngunit mahiwagang pangungusap—Nagtaas ang presyo ng langis sa pandaigdigang merkado. Kahit saang anggulo tingnan, hindi nakakapawi ng agam-agam ang paliwanag na iyon. Commuter ako, at araw-araw, pinagkakasya ko ang aking baon para mairaos ang buong maghapon. Ang bawat pisong nadadagdag sa pamasahe—kahit 50 sentimos pa!—ay mabigat na para sa akin. Wala nang extra rice kapag lunch. Titiisin ko na muna ang uhaw dahil ubos na ang aking barya. At kung hirap na ako, tiyak na mas hirap ang mga driver. Langis ang nagpapaandar sa kanilang kabuhayan, kaya malaki ang nawawala sa kanila sa tuwing tumataas ang presyo ng langis.

Kahit pagal na ang mga braso at binti sa pagmamaneho, uuwi silang bitin ang kita. Malinaw kung sino ang nalulugi sa tuwing tumataas ang presyo ng langis, pero walang nakakaalam kung bakit kailangan magtaas ito. Malaman ang pangungusap na paboritong idahilan ng mga kumpanya sa tuwing may nagtatanong kung bakit tumataas ang presyo ng langis. Una, hindi nagbabago ang kanilang paliwanag na ito simula nang dumalas ang pagtataas ng presyo ng langis. Kung napapagod ang titser sa klase sa gasgas na palusot ng mga estudyante, paano pa kaya ang publikong laging talo sa tuwing aakyat ng piso o dalawang piso ang presyo ng krudo? Ikalawa, masyadong misteryoso ang ‘pandaigdigang merkado’ na iyan. Ano bang meron sa pandaigdigang merkadong na iyan at laging tumataas ang presyo ng krudo sang-ayon dito? Ayon sa gobyerno, sapat na raw na paliwanag ang mahiwagang pangungusap na laging sinasambit ng mga may-ari ng mga kumpanya ng langis. Deregulasyon ang tawag dito, at ito raw ang umiiral na batas

Ayon sa gobyerno, hindi raw problema ang deregulasyon

GIDGET ESTELLA

sa bansa. Sa ilalim ng batas na ito, ligtas ang mga kumpanya ng langis sa pagpapaliwanag sa publiko kung paano tumataas ang presyo ng produktong nagpapagulong sa ekonomiya. Binibigyan rin ng laya ng batas na ito ang mga kumpanya na diktahan ang presyo ng langis. Wala raw tayong magagawa kung magdesisyon silang magtaas ng presyo, at walang gagawin ang gobyerno dahil kabalintunaan naman kung susuwayin ng gobyerno ang sarili nitong batas. Ayon pa sa gobyerno, hindi raw problema ang deregulasyon. Hindi raw tayo dapat magtaka. Samakatuwid, ayos lang sa gobyerno na 7 piso na ang pamasahe sa Ikot sa UP kahit na 6 piso lang ang binabayad ko noong first year ako. Ayos lang ito sa kanila, pero sa akin, hindi. At kung ayaw ipaliwanag ng mga kumpanya kung anong nagaganap sa pandaigdigang merkado at kailangan magtaas ng presyo ng langis, dapat lang tayo mabulabog. Sa puntong iyon, hindi ako inosente. Lahat ng ayaw magpaliwanag, siguradong may nililihim—at madalas, tanging mga kasalanan o krimen ang inililihim. ●

Heartbreak This is not about unrequited love, nor a devastating break-up. This is about passion, nonetheless.

Perhaps “heartbreak” was a term used loosely, or too romantic a term, but I could not think of anything else to describe an amalgamation of disappointment, anger, and hopelessness. I have always considered journalism as warm service to the people, and as I listened to “veteran journalists” and campus writers talking about the craft as a cold pretension of neutrality and solely a pursuit of personal greatness, I realized that a profession so noble could be corrupted as well. It was outrageous for a journalist, who has been “in the business” for decades now, to tell 50 or so students, that the profession is a battle of wits, and if they want to be successful, then they must learn to “strategically bend” ethical guidelines and temporarily forget their ideals. “Sometimes, you have to taste something bitter to taste something sweet,” he said, adding that this mantra has earned him enough capital to be a “successful journalist.” A dangerous statement to make, especially if he equates success to financial wealth. Especially if it comes from a journalist who said that reporters should never question the wisdom of their editors should they decide to kill

a story, notwithstanding its potential. Especially if he said that sensationalism is justifiable because media networks need to profit to continue their operations. Especially if he thinks that it is perfectly fine for a journalist to pursue political ambitions and his career at the same time, and that these two interests would never clash. One of the best journalism professors I ever had said that in practice, the journalist cannot be so rigid in terms of ethics. The ultimate goal is to get the story, of course, but one has to weigh the ethical consequences. For her, the question is between exposing the truth and the possible ethical violations that it might require. For our veteran journalist, however, ethical violations can be forgiven anytime for the sake of news, the value of which is determined not by relevance but by its market worth. Then he, along with other “successful journalists,” goes off to denounce any form of bias in reportage. Our profession requires a high degree of neutrality, they said. Some campus journalists echoed the same sentiments, and even went as far as to dismiss one of their members because she was seen in photos of the protest action held during the State of the Nation Address. Claiming to be absolutely objective

The hypocrisy lies in the fact that everyone is striving to be neutral

in reportage is problematic, because journalism itself is a profession that requires bias. Newswriting requires selection of facts, and selection involves bias. There is bias in selection of quotes, in words used, in selecting the angle and even the topic. Therefore, many mainstream institutions ask journalism practitioners to do the impossible. Having bias is a basic human tendency, thus mainstream standards require journalists to virtually remove their humanity. The hypocrisy lies in the fact that everyone is striving to be neutral, a goal that is not feasible, in institutions which choose to omit harsh realities for the profit motive. The truth is that they are not creating “open-minded and fair” reporters, they are creating indifferent individuals. Many journalists cringe at the word “advocacy journalism,” as if “advocacy” and “journalism” are like oil and water. They do not understand that this society needs advocacy journalists more than a huge machinery of reporters who believe they can be neutral. It is, indeed, a heartbreak. The plight of the people, however, continues as we speak, and the more important thing is to not lose heart.  ●

MISS DULCE EXTRANJERA

In light with the celebration of Dr. Jose Rizal’s 150th year, let UP Rep take you into a deeper understanding of his life and the life of the most famous women in his life. Await and be amazed as a lot of secrets about their lives shall be revealed. Encompassing the different aspects of their lives in a witty, sharp, and humorous light, we present to you MISS DULCE EXTRANJERA by Nicolas Pineda. Did Rizal really love and marry Josephine? Did they have children? Was she part of the Katipunan? As they answer all these questions, characters of significance in Rizal and Bracken’s life are once more relived. See these characters come to life on September 8 and 9 (7PM) and 10 and 12 (3PM and 7PM) at the Aldaba Recital Hall.

Maxima: Exceeding Limits ∙ Surpassing Bounds

Join the UP Statistical Society as it celebrates its 30th year anniversary. The weeklong celebration includes: Lullaby: An Outreach Program (Sept. 11), Exhibit Opening ~ Thanksgiving Mass (Sept. 13), Eat to the Max: The Grand Pakain (Sept. 14), Sinner or Saint: The Guilty Lies on the Extreme (Sept. 15), and The 25th Annual Stat-Is-Eeks! ~ Enigma: Anniversary Party (Sept. 17). See you there!

Give Shelter Animals the Gift of Hope

PAWS needs your help. Every year PAWS Animal Rehabilitation Center cares for over 500 dogs and cats rescued from cruelty or neglect. The cost of rescuing, treating and rehabilitating animals will be too much for a small struggling shelter if not for the help of supporters and donors. PAWS, together with select Communication Research students of UP Diliman, encourages you to help the shelter animals by choosing to make a contribution. Like our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/pauseforpaws, or contact La-u at 0915-453-8867 to learn more on how to donate today.


15 • Kulê Opinyon

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

INBOX

TEMPEST IN UPLB

The search for the next chancellor of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) has taken a disconcerting turn. The constituents of the university were shocked to learn that two of the seven aspirants for the position have been publicly and officially claiming that they both share the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with former US President Al Gore and the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC). Chancellor wannabes, Dr. Rex Victor O. Cruz and Dr. Felino P. Lansigan, dean of the UPLB-College of Forestry and Natural Resources and professor of UPLB-College of Arts and Sciences-Institute of Statistics, respectively, both indicated in the official bio-data they submitted to the Search Committee for the Next UPLB Chancellor that they are cowinners of this very prestigious and much-coveted prize. In his list of Awards and Recognitions, Cruz stated: “Nobel Peace Prize 2007, shares with Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and former US Vice President Al Gore.” The claim is also prominently posted in http://www. rexcruz.org/resume/resume.htm, “The official website of Dr. Rex Victor O. Cruz, in relation to his nomination as the next UPLB Chancellor.” The Lansigan bio-data, on the other hand, asserts that “He is also a co-recipient of the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.” The 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, as declared by the Nobel Prize Committee, is shared only by Gore and IPCC. The UPLB Coalition of Concerned Constituents, which exposed the claims of Cruz and Lansigan, has publicly charged them with intellectual dishonesty and lack of academic integrity. To put an honorable closure to the issue, they ask that the two apologize to the UPLB community and withdraw their candidacy for chancellorship, “so as not to further besmirch the honor and reputation of UPLB which takes rightful pride for distinctive excellence in scientific research and other scholarly work.” Cruz and Lansigan, however, would not budge. They insist that they do share the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize and there is no reason for them to withdraw from the race. To substantiate their claim, they point to a certificate given to them by IPCC “for contributing

EKSENANG PEYUPS

TEXTBACK

to the award of the Nobel Peace Prize for 2007 to the IPCC” (see photo of the certificate below). This is a certificate given by IPCC to numerous individuals from various member-countries who contributed to the work of IPCC. However, not even the chairman of IPCC who signed the certificates claim to share the award with Gore and IPCC. A day after the “expose”, an update on the bio-data and vision papers of the aspirants for UPLB chancellorship was posted in the UP System website where the relevant entry on Cruz’ bio-data reads: “Nobel Peace Prize 2007, member of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.” The honest, correct and accurate claim, says UPLB-CCC, should be: IPCC Certificate, for contributing to the award of the Nobel Peace Prize for 2007 to the IPCC. The group asserts that stretching the IPCC-issued certificate into sharing the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with Gore and IPCC patently smacks of willful misrepresentation and distortion of facts, which is unthinkable for denizens of an academic institution such as UPLB who are supposed to sift facts from fiction. Supporters of Cruz and Lansigan attribute the “expose” to a demolition job meant to derail what they believe as their respective candidate’s front-running position in the race for UPLB chancellorship. The group that brought the matter to public attention maintains that they merely presented facts in an effort to “spare the leadership of UPLB from academic pretenders and intellectual poseurs.” The Search Committee for the Next UPLB Chancellor has kept very quiet on the issue. It is anybody’s guess whether it will bring this concern to the attention of the UP Board of Regent, which will vote on the UPLB chancellorship on September 27, or simply dismiss it as mere intramural. UPLB can wake up one morning with a self-declared Nobel Peace Prize winner at its helm. How the UPLB faculty, students, REPS and alumni will take it remains to be seen.

Ano sa tingin mo ang dapat baguhin sa Konstitusyon ng Pilipinas?

Lahat! Irevise Ng Bonggang-bongga. 10-40309 Ang dapat baguhin sa konsti ng R.P. ay ang Article X o Local Government. Ang Article 2 sec 6 dahil parang di magkahiwalay ang simbahan at ang estado.Sunud-sunuran ang mga utaw sa gobyerno kapag church na ang kalaban. Di ba, the separation of church and state shall be INVIOLABLE!Isama na rin ang Art.3 section5.Slap!!2011-78406 Paulo Fontanilla SMPF Nais kong baguhin ang buong saligang batas 1987 ng pilipinas. Isa ito sa mga pinakamadaldal na saligang batas sa buong daigdig. Walang naging halaga ang pagiging madaldal nito dahil pulos butas at walang pangil ang halos lahat ng bahagi nito. Naniniwala ako na kapag ang saligang batas ay matibay, matalino, at may pangil, hindi na kailangan pa ng samu’t saring batas at batas-batasan na isinulat naman sa ingles kaya’t hindi maipabatid sa kalahatan. Nais ko ring mas pagtibayin ang kalagayan ng wikang filipino sa pamamagitan ng mas matibay na artikulo ukol sa ating pambansang wika. Siyanga pala, dismayado ako dahil nanakaw ang cp ng kule kung kalian itatampok sana ang pinakaMAGANDANG tanong, ang tanong ukol sa wikang filipino. Wala akong sinisisi dahil walang may kasalanan BA POLSCI 201126136

Kung pwedeng manghiram ng nanay, kaninong nanay ang hihiramin mo?

‘Yoko manghiram ibang Nanay, utak na lang! 3 weeks na akong ‘di nilulubayan ng exams eh. God bless us all! 2008-30718 BS MetE Hihiramin ko ang nanay ni noynoy para puede rin akong tumakbong president at manalo kahit tamad ako at walang background sa politics. Hihi. – 0752240 Nanay ni Pacman, tuturuan ko siyang sumayaw. Haha! 2009-11929 Math Isa lang ang nanay ko sa buong mundo..

no need na manghiram pa.. kahit may topak un lagi mahal ko un! 0645210 Gs2 k0ng hramin ang nanay ni pacman, c m0mmy D. Nsa kanya ang lucky charm..kung xa b ang nanay mu, ay cgurado,ckat ka na..ang c0rny ng k0mix. ibalik c chichibu,the campus walker..hi kay ISAY,Edl 111. :).Bruce fr0m EDUc.. Hihiramin ko ang nanay ko! Haha… wala namang makakapalit sa mommy ko eh… hehe… n_n 11-49466 BSCHEMSTRY Kahit pwedeng manghiram, di ko yun gagawin. Parang insulto kay mother, sobrang imba ng mama ko eh. Pwde tatay na lang? Wala ako nun eh. 2009-55988 BSCT

Comments

Asteeg ung nakaisip ng lucida sky.. yes, may titignan at aabangan na aq maliban sa column ni delfin Mercado. hehe. nice job guys. :) 10-17181 xian stat Para kay Delfin Mercado ng Terminal Cases, aus lng yn. I mean hndi pla un aus. :) Darating dn ang panahon mahahanap mo dn ang course n para sau. I hope malapt n ung ‘panahon’ n un. :) 10-48830 Great work, Mila Polinar! Nakakatouch ung “The letter you won’t find in your mail.” Wala pa ring kupas ang “Terminal Cases.” :) May kurot sa puso ang artikulo ni Mila. Hay na-miss ko tuloy Ate ko sa Korea. 0812288 Next week’s questions: 1. Anong masasabi mo sa pagbaba ng ranking ng UP sa QS world University survey?

Elow mga ‘the, eto nanaman tayo sa nag-iisang, nagpipitagang chismisan ng mga iskolar ng bayan. Pabongga#1 Sino naman tong kuyang ito na um-iindiana Jones at feel na feel ang pagttreasure hunting habang naglalakad sa sidewalk sa Bio Pav. Talaga naming na-explore na ata ni kuya ang kasuluk sulukan at kalalim laliman ng lahat ng Yamashita Treasure na buried sa ilong niya. Lahat naman siguro tayo may tinatagong mala-National Treasure sa kaibuturan n gating sarili pero, aba kuya, may tinatawag po tayong CR. Hay nako kuya, kuhang kuha mo na, KUHANG KUHA MO NA. Pabongga #2 Dahil pokpok by profession talaga ang mga tagakulutera, rumaraket kami kahit umaga. One day, isang masipag na chikitita ang nagrole play at nagpretend na postwoman sya. Then, when the customer asked her to come in, nagka-cold feet si teh!! Kuya wag po! ang drama. Heller teh, like bibigyan ka lang kaya niya ng private lesson...sa pagtanggap ng bisita. Bad manners raw ang pagintayin ang mga tao sa labas ng bahay. Yan na lang muna sa ngayon mga parekoy. WAG nating kalimutang basahin ulit ang susunod nating chismisan. Babush!

2. Sinong gusto mong makasama sa linggo ng strike laban sa budget cut? Send in your opinions and feedback via SMS! Type KULE <space> YOUR MESSAGE <space> STUDENT NUMBER (required), NAME and COURSE (optional;) and send to:

09054596893

PHILIPPINE COLLEGIAN GRAND ALUMNI HOMECOMING TATAK KULÊ: 89 na taon ng tapang, talas at talab ng pamamahayag ng Phililppine Collegian on October 7 at the Bahay ng Alumni in UP Diliman

UPLB Coalition of Concerned Constituents September 5, 2011

To all Collegian alumni: We cordially invite everyone who has been part of the Collegian to join colleagues and friends in a grand alumni homecoming themed

Apart from invoking nostalgia, the event also aims to raise funds to maintain the current state of operations of the publication. The student publication fee in UP Diliman has been fixed at P40 per student every semester since 1989. Due to

increasing production costs, the Collegian now incurs an average deficit of P200,000 per year. A registration fee of P1000, inclusive of food, souvenir items and a small donation, will be charged of each alumnus and his/her respective guest/s. For any inquiries, you can reach us via email at kulehomecoming@gmail. com or contact us at 0905.459.6893 (Richard) or 0927.326.8776 (Marjo). Organizers: Philippine Collegian Alumni Editors Association and the current staff of the Philippine Collegian.


KulĂŞ The Back Page

Huwebes 8 Setyembre 2011

Philippine Collegian Issue 11-12  

Issue 11-12 Thursday, 08 September 2011 | 16pages

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