Tuesday, March 28, 2006

If I Only Had a Brain

Quinito Henson, a Lasallite through and through, averred in his column yesterday that "Arana has accumulated 24 units of failures and is not academically qualified to reenroll at La Salle."

Well, there goes all those AHEAD tutorial billboards. Evidently, Arana needed tutorial services. Badly. But, come on, they might as well have asked the Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz to endorse their services. It's just like asking Bembol Roco to endorse a brand of shampoo.

It is assumed, nevertheless, that Arana passed all his dancing courses at DLRT with flying colors.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Felonies for Dummies

Who would have thought that it was possible to learn Criminal Law in three weeks? Yep, we basically breezed through crimes against persons, personal liberty and security, property, chastity, and honor, and criminal negligence all within the last three weeks of the semester. We actually learned theft all the way down to criminal negligence in one meeting.

After a week of trying, I was finally able to finish reading Reyes' commentary on the RPC last Sunday morning (about 1:30 AM). Whether I actually learned anything from it is yet to be seen. My pace was hardly inspiring. On Monday night, I was able to read from robbery to brigandage; then on Tuesday, theft to fraudulent insolvency; on Wednesday, i was able to start on estafa and finished estafa through abuse of confidence; on Thursday, estafa through deceit to other deceits. I called in sick last Friday and just rolled - chattel mortgage all the way to white slave trade. Then, on Friday night, I finished abduction and all the provisions under Title XII, and on Saturday all the way to Sunday morning, finished the rest of the oh-so-lovely commentary on punishable acts and omissions under this jurisdiction.

So, if ever I pass the exam on Saturday, which by the way would constitute 60% of my final grade, I can probably muster enough mojo to pass myself off as an authority on crime and punishment, and assert my knowledge of specific felonies, such as say, illegal use of uniforms or insignia.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

All Work and No Play is Bad

It has just been reported that the Sony PlayStation 3 will not be released until November.

TOKYO--(UPDATE) Sony will put off the release of its much awaited PlayStation 3 machine until November from its planned spring debut because of delays in finalizing its next-generation disk technology, the company said Wednesday.

Now, that would have been sad, if I was liquid enough to buy a console on its original release date. As it turns out, I may just have enough moolah by November to get me one in time for Christmas.

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Muchas Grasas

I don't know about you, but I think the society pages are a load of crap.

I say it's useless. Granted that the top 5% richest families in the country read this section before they do Pugad Baboy, just imagine how many trees PDI and the other papers can save by not printing this section altogether. You see, the rich folks - or as Maurice Arcache puts it, "all the beautiful people" - can spew out hot air among each other, without involving us innocent civilians, since they all live within three blocks of each other anyway.

Que horror, palanggas! Unfortunately, this will not alleviate the pain and suffering of society writers, which may be caused by restraining their propensity to list the names of these uber-rich people and their current paramours. Surely, not only Class A folks deserve to know who, for instance, the "civic-minded hotshot personalities from the business, arts and culture sectors" are, while using adjectives such as "adorable," "world traveler and renowned," "popular couple," and one of my favorites, "ultra glam" in the process. All in one sentence.

If these pages have a redeeming value, it's this: these pages can explain why the rich become richer and the poor become poorer, better than any investigative journalist's work can. You see, you and I have about the same chances as a snowball's in hell, in having a "seven-course degustation dinner at The Tivoli" with one of these "gorgeous" and "stylish" society folks. You can imagine your chances in dating, much less marrying one of them.

So you see, palanggas, the "chi-chi pack" keep the wealth amongst themselves. It doesn't go out of the family.

P.S. Seriously though, during these times, when people line up for days for a chance to win prizes from television shows and escape poverty in the process, showing off what rich people do with their spare time is just plain tasteless.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Where's the Babble?

Tonight, at 7:35 PM, Red Bull Barako will play its first game in the PBA Philippine Cup vs. perennial favorite San Miguel Beer. For some people, myself included, the game itself will be somewhat overshadowed by Rich Alvarez' reunion with Enrico Villanueva, Larry Fonacier and Paolo Bugia, who for the first time since 2002, will be donning the same jerseys. Just in case you just crawled out from under a rock, these players (except Bugia, who was injured that year), together with Wesley Gonzales and LA Tenorio, formed the core of the 2002 UAAP champions Ateneo Blue Eagles.

Gonzales, incidentally, will be playing for the other side tonight, after a mid-season trade with Airhead21 which brought him to SMB, where he joins fellow Atenean Olsen Racela. Tonight's game will thus feature all six active Blue Eagles in the PBA.

Which begs the question: what the hell was BJ Manalo smoking when he said

My dream, even as a kid, was to play professional basketball. In my mind, Ateneo is the school to go if you dream to become successful in the corporate world, but not to achieve in pro basketball.

Wow, mali.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Ignorance is Strength

If you have read George Orwell's 1984, I am sure that (1) unlike 99% of the viewing public, you know why the show is called Pinoy Big Brother, and (2) Supreme Editor-in-Chief Lomibao's antics are starting to sound like Orwell's Minitrue to you.

Minitrue, or the Ministry of Truth, is one of Oceania's four ministries. It is:

The propaganda arm of Oceania's regime. Minitrue controls political literature, the Party organization, and the telescreens. Winston Smith works for Minitrue, "rectifying" historical records and newspaper articles to make them conform to IngSoc's most recent pronouncements, thus making everything that the Party says true.

If we are indeed living in Orwell's 1984, Minitrue would be headed by, naturally, Toting "Fake CD" Bunye. Supreme Editor-in-Chief Lomibao, on the other hand, would probably be one of its most trusted agents.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Joke Time

As if we need more proof to show that Gloria is truly out of touch with the harsh realities of life for the majority of the Filipinos, she just decided to explain why brain drain is a good thing.

WHILE most observers agree that Filipinos are leaving the country in droves for lack of job opportunities here, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said that the worker exodus was propelled by strong overseas demand for their talents and not by desperate conditions at home.

Maybe she's right. Maybe Filipino doctors are not really desperate. Maybe there is just a very strong demand for Filipino nurses abroad.

If nothing else, what she said just shows you that there is not a single OFW in the Macapagal-Arroyo clan.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

What's in a name?

It's now in the hands of the Supreme Court. Let us all pray that they would have the balls to decide the case on the merits, rather than dismiss it outright on ground of mootness (which is precisely why Gloria lifted it in the first place, dummy). Otherwise, as Drilon noted, "the media and freedom of the press may become academic."

While the President has the power to impose martial law or suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, Gloria has not resorted to either, because they are subject to the review of Congress and/or the Supreme Court. This is one of the many safeguards enshrined in the 1987 Constitution after the nation's collective experience with Martial Law. Gloria, on two previous occasions, resorted to the third commander-in-chief power which says "when it becomes necessary, she may call on the Armed Forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence or rebellion." This power has no "expiry date", and is generally beyond the power of review by the Supreme Court.

Just to refresh our memories, here are the two previous instances when Gloria called on the AFP:

In a May 2001 case involving an attempt by supporters of ousted President Joseph Estrada to march on MalacaƱang, the court held that the issue had become academic after Ms Arroyo rescinded her declaration of a state of rebellion.

However, Bernas recalled that the court dealt Ms Arroyo a setback in the Oakwood mutiny case in 2003 when it ruled even after the President had lifted a similar proclamation that a state of rebellion “cannot diminish or violate constitutionally protected rights.”

As Bernas noted yesterday

These two decisions clarify the meaning and the legal consequences of a declaration of a "state of rebellion." Such declaration adds no new powers. Our President, zealous guardian that she is of the "rule of law," accepts that clarification. But, desiring to assume powers which a declaration of a state of rebellion does not give, she avoided declaring a "state of rebellion." Instead, she proclaimed "a state of national emergency" to let her minions go their merry way. Beautiful!

There are innumerable words in the English dictionary. Merriam-Webster Online lists five synonyms for the word rebellion alone, i.e. revolution, uprising, revolt, insurrection and mutiny, which Gloria has not yet used as a euphemism for her own personal state of paranoia and panic. Now, unless the SC decides this controversy with finality, we may yet see this country under all different kinds of states, with nothing but Gloria's imagination to limit the possibilities.

That which we call a rose by any other word would smell as sweet.

Monday, March 06, 2006

2nd Generation

This is definitely one of the better Jordan commercials that I have seen. Not bad for a guy who has not been playing competitive ball since 2003.

Brokeback Mountain, Again