Wednesday, January 30, 2008

UPDATED: Another screwup by the Villar-Cayetano leadership

or how the NBN investigation was fucked up big time by Cayetano according to Jarius Bondoc.

Related:

- The Toothless and Feckless Blue Ribbon committee under Villar.

UPDATE: In the end, mangyayari dito. This is just for show. The Administration already got to Lozada because Cayetano revealed the supposed to be "secret witnesss" identity. Which means Lozada is now likely to do the same shit as Neri did at the Senate--throw Abalos under the bus, but absolve and protect Jose Pidal and Co.

Time and time again, these two "opposition" members have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.

UPDATE: From the Malaya:

Another possible witness to the Ar-royo administration’s thieving ways has left the country to evade a Senate subpoena. Rodolfo Noel Lozada, described as having intimate knowledge of the $375 million ZTE deal which would have cost taxpayers $150 million in overprice, flew to Hong Kong and points east on an "official trip."

I'm sure napagusapan na ni Lozada at ng mga Administration handlers niya ang script niya bago siya bumalik sa Pilipinas.

"An amazing pastoral statement from the CBCP"

From the Tribune Editorial:

Catholic bishops appear to have totally lost their moral moorings as they virtually exculpated Gloria Arroyo and her government from blame on the rampant corruption and instead put the blame on the Filipino people for the moral decay in society.

They also placed the blame on the media for the “darkness” that we live with today, saying Filipinos are “a people almost without hope,” seeing darkness everywhere, adding the many problems we have today are “simply rumors, fears, suspicions, imagined wrongs” and as these rumors, imagined wrongs, suspicions and fears are reported in the newspapers, the people believe these imaginary problems to be true and factual. All these were stated in the bishops’ pastoral statement issued Monday.

This is truly an amazing pastoral statement from the bishops who claim to be the country’s moral guides.

Simply rumors, suspicions and imagined wrongs in this government and society, they say? Were the “Hello Garci” conversations caught on tape detailing the cheating operations of the presidential polls of 2004 which even included abductions of election officers who were not willing to engage in cheating, an imagined problem and a rumor?


Read the whole thing. I don't trust the CBCP. When the issue of Hello Garci election fraud first surfaced, the CBCP immediately came out with a pastoral letter saying that they were not asking for Arroyo's resignation, and that they would not support another edsa power grab, but would prefer "constitutional means" like impeachment. A lot of people including members of the opposition were skeptical that impeachment will work, but went along anyway.

Guess what? A year later, Bait and switch. When the anti-Arroyo movement moved to impeach arroyo, the CBCP came out with another pastoral statement, this time saying they will not support Arroyo's impeachment.

These are the same people too that supported the unconstitutional Calibrated Pre-emptive Response (CPR) rule at the height of Hello Garci.

So whenever i hear bishops pontificating na "we are all corrupt", or "everybody cheats anyway", matawa ka na lang.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

"Karaoke for Shy People"

Blogs! (via Sully)

Orwellian

He would be proud of this.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Feel free to download all the songs -- Legally

for real?

Martin Scorsese plans to direct controversial film set in Japan

From the AP:

Martin Scorsese has disclosed that he is planning to direct a movie, set in 17th-century Japan, that may have implications related to the war in Iraq. In an interview with the Associated Press at the Cannes film festival, Scorsese said that his film, Silence, presumably based on the novel of the same name by Shusaku Endo and William Johnston about Portuguese Christian missionaries who arrived in Japan in feudal times, has parallels to America's role in Iraq. The Oscar-winning director (The Departed) said that he hopes to shoot the film in Japan, at least partially, beginning next summer. "It raises a lot of questions about foreign cultures coming in and imposing their way of thinking on another culture they know nothing about," Scorsese told the A.P.

So was it a mistake for the US and other Western countries to invade and occupy Afghanistan and impose their culture of democracy in that god-forsaken terrorist sponsoring state?

Is Scorsese saying that the US and NATO should get the hell out of Afghanistan now and leave the weak Karzai gov't to fend for himself against the Taliban and Al Queda?

What about Japan after WW2? Was it a mistake too for the US to impose democracy in that part of the world then?

I like his movies, but Scorsese sometimes make dumb political comments.

Byron York on Romney's secret Timetables

From the Corner.


Greetings from Florida. I know the sentiments here in the Corner about the McCain-Romney tussle over Iraqi timetables. But I have to say that, looking at what Romney said last April, I think McCain has a point. Here is the exchange in question, from ABC's "Good Morning America" on April 3, 2007:

MS. ROBERTS: Iraq. John McCain is there in Baghdad right now. You have also been very vocal in supporting the president and the troop surge. Yet, the American public has lost faith in this war. Do you believe that there should be a timetable in withdrawing the troops?

MR. ROMNEY: Well, there's no question but that — the president and Prime Minister al-Maliki have to have a series of timetables and milestones that they speak about. But those shouldn't be for public pronouncement. You don't want the enemy to understand how long they have to wait in the weeds until you're going to be gone. You want to have a series of things you want to see accomplished in terms of the strength of the Iraqi military and the Iraqi police, and the leadership of the Iraqi government.

MS. ROBERTS: So, private. You wouldn't do it publicly? Because the president has said flat out that he will veto anything the Congress passes about a timetable for troop withdrawals. As president, would you do the same?

MR. ROMNEY: Well, of course. Can you imagine a setting where during the Second World War we said to the Germans, gee, if we haven't reached the Rhine by this date, why, we'll go home, or if we haven't gotten this accomplished we'll pull up and leave? You don't publish that to your enemy, or they just simply lie in wait until that time. So, of course, you have to work together to create timetables and milestones, but you don't do that with the opposition.
Reading that, I think it's fair to conclude that Romney was saying he was in favor of Bush and Maliki setting a secret timetable for a U.S. troop withdrawal. (By the way, I didn't think that was a bad idea, on the grounds that the Iraqis needed to be pushed hard before they would get anything done.) Certainly people who were listening took it that way; at the time of Romney's statement, there was a fair amount of reaction, much of it from the left, to the effect that Romney was coming around to the idea of a timetable. His pledge to veto a congressionally-imposed timetable seemed based on the idea that such a timetable would necessarily involve a publicly-known deadline, although there are clearly separation-of-powers objections one could make, too.

In addition, I think it's indisputable that, at the time, McCain's Republican rivals supported the surge but were also happy that it was McCain who was all the way out on the limb. Last February, someone in the Romney camp told me that yes, Romney supported the surge, but that "McCain owns the surge." The implication was that if things didn't go well, McCain would be the one to suffer; the other guys would be OK precisely because they didn't put it all on the line for the surge. So when I look at Romney's comments on "Good Morning America," I see a lot of caution and a bit of behind-covering, as well.

UPDATE: The War over the War.

Writers from the Associated Press and Time magazine, among others, have suggested Romney's quote does not constitute an endorsement of "secret timetables" for withdrawal. It is a debatable point. If Romney does not actually say, "I support secret timetables for withdrawal," he does seem to endorse such timetables in response to a question about withdrawal. That's important. It was a direct question: "Do you believe that there should be a timetable in withdrawing the troops?" If the answer was no, presumably Romney would have said so. He did not.

Romney further muddled things in his response to a follow-up. Roberts said: "So, private. You wouldn't do it publicly? Because the president has said flat out that he will veto anything the Congress passes about a timetable for troop withdrawals. As president, would you do the same?"

Romney responded: "Well, of course. Can you imagine a setting where during the Second World War we said to the Germans, gee, if we haven't reached the Rhine by this date, why, we'll go home, or if we haven't gotten this accomplished we'll pull up and leave? You don't publish that to your enemy, or they just simply lie in wait until that time. So, of course you have to work together to create timetables and milestones, but you don't do that with the opposition."

Did Romney say he would, like Bush, veto anything with a timetable? Or does the rest of his answer suggest that he's for the timetables as long as they're private? Again, it's debatable.

But to go as far as CNN's Jeffrey Toobin, who claimed that McCain is "lying" about what Romney said, is a stretch. At the time Romney made the comments, many observers, including several reporters, took him to mean exactly what McCain is imputing to him now. If the Romney campaign protested that interpretation, their objections did now show up in any of the follow-up reporting on his comments.

Get rid of COMELEC crooks, Nene Pimentel dares Melo

Good luck with that. If he won't even acknowledge that the Garci-led operation to rig the elections is real, like some of the COMELEC people we know, and that Garci couldn't do this all by himself without the help of other officials within the COMELEC, then Nene is just whisling in the dark.

If Melo decides to sack a few COMELEC officials for show, it'll probably be for the botched MEGA Pacific automated deal.

But no COMELEC official will be punished or be made to tell the truth on the Garci operations in 2004.

MORE: They shouldn't only remove crooked COMELEC officials, but PARTISAN ones too. Remember, these are the same COMELEC that allowed Mike Arroyo's nuisance candidate to fight for Cayetano's votes.

Here's what i thought of the 75 yr old Melo's appointment.

Money Quote from the Daily Tribune:

There have been changes in the Comelec leadership in the past seven years of Gloria’s reign. The same praises were given to these then new appointees, but were there any changes by way of cleaning up the poll fraud operations that mark every election year, not to mention a genuine cleaning up of the voters’ list?

The usual civil society groups hailed the appointment of Benipayo as Comelec chairman, just as they did in the appointments of Justice Felix Brawner, Rene Sarmiento and Nicodemo Ferrer. Did anything change? There certainly was cheating even with them there.

The year 2004 was certainly marked by electoral fraud, but the then Comelec didn’t put its foot down, and even aided in creating the impression that Gloria had won even before the National Board of Canvass started its canvassing.

And did the Comelec commissioners clean up the voters’ list, or even ensured that the voters would not be disenfranchised by scrambling the voters’ list in opposition bailiwicks?

Of course, it can always be argued that at the head of the Comelec was Benjamin Abalos Sr., but whatever else can be said about the disgraced Abalos, the fact remains that a chairman merely has one vote and can certainly be overruled that which the chairman of the commission presses, by way of a ruling. There never was any move to do that, given the concurrence in many a resolution by the other commissioners.

Even the 2007 senatorial elections were marred with electoral fraud, and again, the commissioners did nothing to stave off the cheating. They had, in fact, sanctioned the cheating, which was as clear as day.

So did they constitute changes in the poll body?

Read the whole thing. There's more background info on Melo. And Yeah, there was cheating even after Garci, and little was done about it, other than a few slaps on the wrists.

Related:
- COMELEC declares Musa Dimasidsing a failure
- Mama Mary vs Musa
- How COMELEC tried to screw Alan Cayetano.
- COMELEC tries to sneak past a bloated voters list
- Garcillano the Master Operator

Sunday, January 27, 2008

The New Rambo film a "political movie"?

(via ross douthat) after reading this review, i may have to see it for myself.

Like its three predecessors, Rambo strikes a nerve, and it's not a nerve that America's left-leaning critical establishment wants struck. Cowritten and directed by Stallone, the fourth Rambo movie is a bracingly political picture -- as much an argument in movie form as No End In Sight; a pro-interventionist rebuttal to all the 2007 documentaries and dramas about America losing bits of its soul in Iraq. The I-word is never spoken in Rambo, yet in its coded way, the film makes a case for why we are in Iraq and should stay there until the job is done, whenever that may be.
Read this too.

Here's the 60 sec trailer.



But I like the longer one.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

UPDATE: Arroyo appoints 75-year old Jose Melo as COMELEC chair

before, he appointed corrupt partisans and crooked operators as commissioners. Now she appoints a way too old person for the job.

Can't find anybody who's at least 20 years younger? the ole COMELEC operators, if they want to, can run rings round this geezer.

UPDATE: Notice the members of the search committee here and here? I don't see any Opposition or Anti-GMA personalities on the list. I see a lot of church people (as if the CBCP is not predominantly pro-Arroyo), and I see some who are blatantly Arroyo apologists. Some are for "reforms" but have a difficult time telling it like it is (i suspect he's a closet arroyo supporter (his wife is) but wearing a "moderate/independent" clothing, just like this phony).

So a bipartisan search committee these ain't. Excluding people who you don't agree with politically is not the way to go.

If McCain loses in the primaries...

it's not going to be because of Iraq, or on immigration.

it's going to be because of the economy. Because a) the economy is slowing down. b) he's going up against Mitt Romney, the successful businessman/governor of Massachusetts in the GOP primaries.

BUT if McCain manages to survive and secure the Republican nomination, he'll win the General Elections over whoever the democrats nominate (Hillary or Barack), because a) he has better national security credentials and b) because clinton and obama have no experience in running a business, a company or a state either.

I admit that Mitt also looks stronger now vs Democrats because of the economy.

Maybe Bill Safire's right, McCain should get this guy for vice president if becomes the prez candidate (Or maybe Barack will get the guy first?)

UPDATE: From CNN's Youtube debate. what mccain's looking for in a vice president:

Cooper: Senator McCain, has this president given too much authority to the vice president?

McCain: Look, I am going to give you some straight talk. This president came to office in a time of peace, and then we found ourselves in 2001.

And he did not have as much national security experience as I do. So he had to rely more on the vice president of the United States, and that's obvious. I wouldn't have to do that. I might have to rely on a vice president that I select on some other issues. He may have more expertise in telecommunications, on information technology, which is the future of this nation's economy. He may have more expertise in a lot of areas.

But I would rely on a vice president of the United States -- but was Fred said, the primary responsibility is to select one who will immediately take your place is necessary. But the vice president of the United States is a key and important issue, and must add in carrying out the responsibilities of the president of the United States.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Erap Hearts Villar

Says Manny Villar is his likely anointed.

Global Freedom in Retreat

according to Freedom House (2008)

I guess Miguel Zubiri hates poor people

he and other people's advocacy and embrace of biofuels has caused food shortages and food prices to skyrocket.

"The world's rush to embrace biofuels is causing a spike in the price of corn and other crops and could worsen water shortages and force poor communities off their land, a U.N. official said Wednesday." Cellulosic ethanol, and methanol from biowaste, etc., can do some good. Corn-based ethanol is a lousy idea.

Feed the Cars? How about feeding the poor, Migz?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Heh

Why Arroyo wants the public to forget Edsa Dos.

Robert Heinlein's guide on how to vote in elections

(via Instapundit)

READER TOM SARTIN WRITES:

Somehow, the following observation from Robert Heinlein seems quite apropos.

‘If you are part of a society that votes, then do so. There may be no candidates and no measures you want to vote for . . but there are certain to be ones you want to vote against. In case of doubt, vote against. By this rule you will rarely go wrong.”

“If this is too blind for your taste, consult some well-meaning fool (there is always one around) and ask his advice. Then vote the other way. This enables you to be a good citizen (if such is your wish) without spending the enormous amount of time on it that truly intelligent exercise of franchise requires.”


The best advice i've heard in a while.

Heath Ledger found dead

the guy who played joker in the new batman film soon to be out died of drug overdose raw.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Joker Arroyo to GMA: Make clean elections your 2010 legacy

From the PDI:

Sen. Joker Arroyo the other day urged President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to make clean elections in 2010 the legacy of her “scandal-tainted reign in Malacañang.” To ensure that the 2010 presidential election will be honest and fair, the senator said Ms Arroyo should choose wisely the new chair of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and use her political will to carry out the long-delayed computerization of elections. He also said the President should put a stop to the cheating that tainted previous elections and appoint trustworthy persons to the vacant Comelec posts so that the poll body would regain the trust of the public.

But didn't Gloria Macapagal Arroyo also promised clean elections in 2004 back then? Joker Arroyo's statement is silly considering the source. Joker supported Arroyo, defended her "win" in the 2004 Elections, and he and Zubiri ran under GMA's ticket in 2007 (where Zubiri benefitted mightily from the GMA/Garci COMELEC Machine in Maguindanao).

OTOH... in a bizarro sense yes, there is less incentive to rig the presidential elections in 2010 since she is stepping down in 2010 and will not run anymore. That's one of the few positives that point to a "cleaner" elections.

More from the editorial:

All of these suggestions are well-taken, and if Ms Arroyo could carry them out before the 2010 elections, they could earn for her presidency a better public judgment. But to these suggestions we would like to add: Prosecute the Comelec officials found liable for the anomalous billion-peso computerization deal. Up to now we cannot understand why the Office of the Ombudsman has yet to find former Comelec Chair Benjamin Abalos liable for the failed P1.3-billion Mega Pacific contract for the computerization of elections. Only Commissioner Resurreccion Borra has been found liable. Why only Borra when all the commissioners, including the chair, signed the contract?

Notice that among all these wonderful suggestions, something's omitted. What ever happened to punishing those election officials helped arroyo steal the elections in 2004? We know it wasn't just Garcillano who fixed the elections for ARroyo. There were plenty of others. I'm sure Gudani and Balutan and Zuce knows more. How can there be credible reforms if nobody from the civil society has the political will and guts to say, we need to go after these guys throw the book at them. We need to go after all the COMELEC officials past and present, active and inactive, who helped commit election fraud in 2004 and 2007. Or else, you gonna have "sleeper cell" COMELEC operators, ready to be activated when needed.

Anything less than that is B.S., in my opinion.

Japan's Nikkei index plunged below 13,000 for the first time in more than two years

Asian Markets continue to plunge

Tribune Editorial: The Truth Revealed about Edsa Dos

The truth revealed


EDITORIAL

01/22/2008

Catholic bishops have been denying they had worked to plot a coup d’etat against then sitting President Joseph Estrada in January 2001, claiming the Edsa ll revolt was a “spontaneous” popular uprising against Estrada.

This, despite the fact that the Tribune prior to the mounted coup by Gloria Arroyo, her military and her elite forces, had already published as its banner, some seven years ago, the “confidential report” from the Vatican forbidding the bishops and clergy from staging a revolt against Estrada, stressing in that report that Estrada was a popularly and democratically elected president and that the Church should not interfere in political matters as the Vatican feared that the Catholic faith would be compromised, if not lost among the Filipino faithful.

Seven years after the fact, the Inquirer came up with its banner saying that Jaime Cardinal Sin opposed the Vatican order and pushed Edsa II, as he had threatened to resign as archbishop of Manila.

The truth is, having been given that Vatican order, the entire community of bishops in the Philippines all disobeyed the Vatican, including the then papal nuncio, as the order was for all the bishops, and the bishops knew of this Vatican ban, but disobeyed it — and the Pope — which does not speak well of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP).

As for Jaime Sin threatening to resign, that’s a laugh, considering the fact that when it was his time to retire, he still didn’t want to do so. More: Even as he had already been retired, he insisted on staying at the Villa San Miguel, despite the fact that a new archbishop of Manila was appointed by the Vatican.

Still, the Inquirer report, seven years late, establishes more proof that indeed, Edsa II was not a spontaneous revolt, but a well-planned coup d’etat by Gloria Arroyo, the Supreme Court (SC) justices, bishops, the military and business groups, led by the Makati Business Club.

As reported, Sin, as archbishop, could easily call on the students from Catholic schools to make up a crowd at Edsa.

There was no real trigger. Gloria and the then political opposition, along with her elite coup plotters, merely used the second envelope excuse to make it appear that Edsa ll was a spontaneous revolt.

The Inquirer reported that as Sin opposed the Vatican order, a mediator, in the person of then Associate Justice Artemio Panganiban, worked things out between Sin and the Vatican.

So what was the business of an SC justice acting as mediator, if not for the fact that he was also in on the Gloria coup plot to oust Estrada?

It has been recorded in Panganiban’s book, Reforms in the Judiciary and admitted by him, that he and then Chief Justice Hilario Davide Jr., decided to swear in Gloria even when they were aware of the fact that Estrada had not resigned and was in fact still in Malacañang.

This just proves that the high court justices willfully violated the Constitution and covered up their crime by inventing the doctrine of “constructive resignation” to legitimize the illegitimate and unconstitutional. Davide swore in the usurper knowing that there was no vacancy in the high office and, it must be stressed, as the so-called Angara diary was not even published as yet. How then could the SC justify the unconstitutional removal of Estrada when the court did not even know of the diary’s existence when they swore in Gloria Arroyo as president?

The justices were in on that coup plot and they know it.

Even Davide was already in on that plot, which was why he did nothing to stop the prosecutors and the evil civil socialites during the impeachment trial.

As early as October, 2000, the Tribune also exposed the coup plot by Gloria and her elite forces, with the plot called “Oplan in Excelsis,” which detailed a meeting of the coup plotters to depose Estrada and install Gloria.

That was October 2000. The Edsa revolt was staged in January 2001.

But long before that — a year before, to be exact — Gloria Arroyo was already plotting the ouster of Estrada with her military, the bishops, the leftists and the business groups. This, she herself has admitted publicly before her then allies, the members of the Council of the Philippines (Copa) in a posh hotel in Makati sometime in late February 2001, and even proudly introduced her co-coup plotters in the military and police.

If there continues to be division today; if there is no enthusiasm for Edsa II anniversaries, it is mainly because there never was a true popular uprising against the popular Estrada, who continues to hold the trust of the Filipino masses.

The elite staged a coup and succeeded in installing Gloria and her government. But they succeeded, too, in destroying the rule of law, the Constitution and democracy.

Monday, January 21, 2008

UPDATE: MLQ3: Erap's Overstated Popularity

He makes his case here. I disagreed with his analysis then and now.

Eto lang masasabi ko: Mahirap na makakuha ng majority vote ngayon dahil sa dami ng mga high profile at major candidates na tumatakbo since 1992. From 1992 to 1998 to 2004, walang nakakuha ng majority because there were at least 4 major candidates that threw their hat in the presidential race. Unlike in the past where it was mostly a two- (or three-way) race for the presidency.

How difficult it is to get a majority if more than 4 major candidates are running? Just look the GOP Primaries. None of the candidates (mccain, romney, huckabee, giuliani, thomspon, ron paul) so far has gotten 50% of the votes in any of the important primaries and caucuses that most of the major candidates participated in.

Iowa Caucus

New Hampshire Primary

Michigan Primary

South Carolina primary

(Wyoming and Nevada doesn't count because McCain, Rudy, Fred and Huckabee did not campaign there)

People forget that Erap won with a 23.7% percentage spread against his nearest rival JDV (Erap 39.6% - JDV 15.9% - Roco 13.6%) If John McCain won by that wide a margin in today's South Carolina Primary, the old geezer would probably be doing cartwheels. If any republican won by that big, the race for the nomination would be over by now.

UPDATE: I think this is relevant to what i'm talking about. McCain Blogger Patrick Hynes takes Michael Graham to task for his silly analysis of the SC race:

McCain’s resurgence has sparked some interesting commentary, some of it not so smart. Generally speaking I ignore the sillier remarks. But I’m feeling feisty this morning, so I’m going to chime in. Take, for example, this post at the Corner by Michael Graham. I like Graham. He’s a funny guy. But his analysis is puerile. Graham argues that McCain lost the support of over 100,000 South Carolinians between 2008 and 2000. That’s just dumb. Saturday’s event was a seven-way contest with four real players. The 2000 contest was a one-on-one affair. It is only natural that the vote would scatter between a Baptist minister, a war hero, a big spending businessman, and a popular, conservative actor and former senator. Graham further argues that by claiming a third of the vote in the South Carolina Republican primary, McCain actually lost. By this absurd logic, Huckabee didn’t “win” Iowa and Romney didn’t “win” Michigan. This is not serious, but I expect we’ll see more of this kind of stuff in the following days.

Wednesday Club eyes Villar-Noli tandem in 2010

ano? vice presidential candidate na naman si Ka Noli?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Biggest Winners in South Carolina

Sabi ni Roger L. Simon:

Biggest Winner: John McCain and Charles Darwin
Biggest Loser: Mike Huckabee and Sean Hannity

Add to the Losers column: Rush Limbaugh

Onwards to Florida!

Former Senatorial Candidate Cesar Montano and wife Sunshine Cruz hiwalay na

link. You cheating bastard. Halika Sunshine, akin ka na lang.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Cloverfield

A new horror film from JJ Abrams. Watch.

Remembering Edsa Dos

Read this interesting article from MLQ3 on the 7 year anniversary of Edsa Dos.

MORE: In MLQ3's comments section, I found this link to the video (i think) of the banned Erap documentary. the video may offend some people. hide your children. viewer discretion is advised.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Jollibee Ongpin closes down after less than one year

sa may Ongpin/Gandara intersection.

i'm surprised by this. maganda naman ang pwesto nila ah! hindi nakatagal.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Romney is McCain's biggest threat to the nomination

I really do think that Romney is the only guy in McCain's way for the nomination. A McCain win in South Carolina would be great, but ending up in second place won't be too bad, as long as McCain beats Romney in the number of votes tallied there.

I'm not so worried about Huckabee because he's just unacceptable to most republicans on foreign policy. He's a disaster when he talks about Iran, Iraq, or Pakistan.

Many conservatives like Fred, but Fred is such a weak and uninspiring candidate that most Republicans will side with McCain if they're the last two man standing.

And Rudy's candidacy is dead, I don't care what his supporters or advisers think.

So McCain needs to focus his fire on Romney. Take him out of the race in SC and Florida. While Fred attacks Huckabee to draw evangelicals away from him, McCain needs to focus on national security while trying to neutralize Romney's advantage on the economic issue.

The romney tactic on using the economy is just a sample of how the democrats and mainstream media will de-emphasize iraq and use the slumping economy issue to their advantage.

Romney's a good manager, but what Americans need is a commander in chief.

Anti-Fred Thompson Push Polling

Listen to the audio, here's what it sounds like.

UPDATE: It's possible that the Huckabee campaign is doing it, but neither campaign or supporters have that kind of money to do an operation like that.

It's probably coming from the romney campaign. A Romney staffer has already resigned because of his connection to a company that did the "Anti Mormon" push polling, Western Wats. If Huckabee and Thompson are busy bashing each other over the push polling issue, then Romney can sneak in unscathed and do well in South Carolina.

Heh...

"IF I WERE President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, I will support former President Joseph "Erap" Estrada in his quest for a second presidential term in 2010. Why? Because Erap will pardon her if she is convicted of a crime when she is no longer president."

-- Neal Cruz

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Conveniently Lost Contracts of Campaign Donors

From Captain Quarter's Blog:

Another scandal involving Indian gaming, campaign contributions, and potential misdeeds by government officials has erupted in California. Four tribes proposed expanding their gaming and sent the requests to the Department of the Interior last September. The DoI had 45 days to review the proposals and to deny them, if needed. However, the requests from the politically-connected tribes somehow got lost for three months, forcing automatic approvals of the lucrative expansions when they mysteriously reappeared

Read the whole thing. Kinda similar to the ZTE and COMELEC thingy where docus and contracts conveniently disappear too.

Political Kids

The sons and daughters of Republican and Democrat Candidates



A. Cate Edwards
B. Sarah Huckabee
C. Tagg Romney
D. Sasha Obama
E. Jackie Kucinich
F. Malia Obama
G. Andrew Giuliani
H. Chelsea Clinton
I. Beau Biden
J. Meghan McCain
K. Hunter Biden
L. Matt Romney
M. Jeri Thompson (wife)
N. Ben Romney
O. Caroline Giuliani

(source)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Democrats to vote for Mitt Romney in Michigan?

Britney Spears to convert to Islam

link.

History Crash Course on current RP Politics

From Lito Banayo:

Kampi is Gloria’s gang of sip-sips and opportunists. She established it to launch a presidential run in 1998, but was forced to sleep-in with Lakas when she agreed to be the vice-presidential candidate of Jose de Venecia. She resurrected it through Ronaldo Puno and Luis Villafuerte, the acolytes of her husband Mike, in 2004. Some of the Kampi members used to line up for Erap’s short-lived Lammp, which incorporated his own personal party called Partido ng Masang Pilipino. Other Kampi’s used to worship FVR when his Lakas was malakas.

Lakas began as a motley group of LDP separatists in the wake of FVR’s defeat in the convention of that once humongous party of trapos in 1991. But FVR with his rag-tag group of a dozen Lakas-NUCD leaders won the closely-contested 1992 elections, and became the party in power for six uninterrupted years. LDP gradually declined and was forced to coalesce with Erap’s PMP and Danding’s NPC to form a Lammp coalition for the 1998 elections that a newly-elected President Erap hardly took serious interest in fortifying. In the wake of his trouncing Lakas’ champion, Speaker Joe de Venecia in 1998, fifty Lakas members in Congress suddenly swore in to Lammp, and managed to elect Manny Villar, a Lakas stalwart turned Lammp member, as Speaker. Two years and five months later, Villar and his Lakas-turned-Lammp congressmen impeached the Erap who had taken them into his fold. At that moment, Lammp died, and Erap’s presidency was gasping for survival, eventually to be given the coup de grace in Edsa Dos, when his handpicked CSAFP, Angelo Reyes, gave salute to a "new" commander-in-chief.

With Erap’s ouster, Doña Gloria consolidated political power first through coalition-building, with her, as suprema, and her husband Jose Miguel as caja de hierro. The coalition included Lakas, the Liberal Party, then still united and singing hosannas to Doña Gloria, the Nationalist People’s Coalition of Danding Cojuangco, with a few "recalcitrants" still holding "Erap pa rin" flaglets, a fringe party called PDSP, and independents in the Senate who grouped themselves into a Wednesday dinner gang, namely Noli de Castro, Joker Arroyo, Ralph Recto, Kiko Pangilinan, and Manny Villar.

Setting his sights on the 2010 plum when the Gloria he supported for six long years would be gone (that’s an assumption), Villar acquired a "shell" party with a grand old history, the Nacionalista Party, from the then dying Salvador Laurel in 2003. After his Gloria won in 2004, he worked his way through nimble brinkmanship and purveyed his Nacionalista Party of a dozen members into an ally of the opposition under Erap. Through such nimble footwork, Villar, now identified with the opposition, was able to salvage his re-election, while his friend Ralph Recto floundered in defeat, identified as he chose to be with Doña Gloria.

Erap in prison has had to cobble along through momentary coalitions, just to provide a flag of convenience for anyone who needed a standard to run against whoever ran under GMA’s banners. First there was the hastily-formed Pwersa ng Masa coalition in 2001, then the United Opposition (Nagkaisang Oposisyon) that Angara, Sotto and Oreta marshaled for FPJ in 2004, which later metamorphosed into the so-called Genuine Opposition, minus the three, and this time with Jojo Binay as captain. The Angara-Sotto-Oreta trio defected to the Doña’s side, and the once humongous Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino has transmogrified into a family affair headquartered in Baler.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

No Wonder Jim Pinkerton was touting Huckabee at Bloggingheads.tv

he's now working for the Huckabee campaign. Can Dick Morris be far behind? At least they will be better than Screamin' Ed Rollins.

Sarkozy's Girlfriend Pregnant

Carla Bruni's pregnant as Sarko's ex-wife Cecilia delivers blistering attack on couple

Reason Magazine on Guest Workers in Singapore

Here's Kerry Howley's article on Gener Manalac, an OFW working there:

Gener Manalac said goodbye to his children, and to the Philippines, on June 25, 1993. Things had gone sour for the family ever since the Filipino government refused to renew the lease for Subic Bay, the U.S. naval base where Manalac and his wife earned a solid living for his family of five.

He worked as a crane operator, and she in the military commissary. When the base closed following a contentious political debate in the Philippines, he and his wife were immediately jobless. “The government closed the base,” he explains, “and offered no alternatives.” He describes it as the worst time of his life.

Manalac looked for work but never really expected to find it in central Luzon, where his family waited anxiously as money began to run out. When a recruiter from Bahrain showed up looking for construction workers, he knew his future was no longer in the Philippines. He tried Bahrain, hated it, and returned to look for something else. The something else was Singapore.

Fourteen years later, Manalac is still here. He is now a supervisor for a construction company, and he helps build condos and cluster houses for Singapore’s growing population. His family is still in the Philippines, and he has managed to keep his kids clothed and in school with remittances he sends home monthly. His older daughter is studying to be a nurse, his son a computer engineer. His youngest daughter is 17 and studying English. Manalac has seen his children three times since he left that day in 1993, and he winces as he talks about the separation.

It’s not the experience of fatherhood he might have hoped for, but Manalac is delighted with his good fortune. Fifty-two and no longer trim, he smiles broadly as he describes his climb up the ranks of the construction industry. In 2000 he was promoted; suddenly he was in charge of a team of newly arrived immigrants. He works 15-hour days, six days a week. In what spare time he has, he studies conversational Mandarin in hopes of better communicating with his Chinese coworkers.

And yet Manalac is very much a guest in this country. He says he’ll remain for as long as they’ll have him, though he doesn’t presume to have any right to stay. If he were fired or became unable to work, he’d have to leave within seven days. He is subject to regular medical examinations to ensure that he is HIV-negative. He can’t bring his children here. He can’t bring his wife here. Were his marriage to fail, it would be illegal for him to marry a Singaporean. Were he female, a pregnancy would mean repatriation or abortion. The Singaporean government has made itself very clear: Foreign workers are here to build a nest egg, not to build a nest.

Perhaps the most significant restriction on Manalac is the nature of his work permit and the limits of his freedom to find employment. Only select industries are open to foreigners. On my way to meet Manalac in his apartment in the suburbs, I asked the taxi driver whether he too was a guest here. He laughed. A foreign taxi driver? Absurd.

Manalac is permitted to work only in construction, and only for the employer who brought him here. If he is unhappy with his employer or feels he is being mistreated, he can return to the employment agency and request a new job, but the process is cumbersome and can be difficult to navigate.

None of this seems to bother him in the least. It’s just part of the deal, and the deal has worked out well for him. He says he harbors no resentment toward the government of Singapore: He is angry at his home government for depriving him of a job, not at Singapore for giving him one. He has never really had to wade into the bureaucracy; never had to fight to stay or to change employers. Those that have faced such problems have reason to feel more conflicted about the well-guarded doors Singapore opens for the region’s poor.
Kerry Howley also discussed the article and Manalac in bloggingheads.tv

Friday, January 11, 2008

Thursday, January 10, 2008

FoxNews GOP debate in South Carolina tomorrow

10:00am Manila time. Ron Paul will participate.

Erap concedes GMA defeated FPJ

And he blamed Lacson, not Arroyo and Garci machine for the "loss":

Estrada said he didn’t want a repeat of the 2004 presidential election that saw Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo winning over her strongest rival, Fernando Poe Jr.

Estrada claimed that Poe, his close friend and fellow actor, lost because Lacson also ran for president, dividing the anti-Arroyo votes.

But if Arroyo was so sure that she can beat FPJ and wanted clean elections, she would not have bothered to use Garci to rig the elections, no? Obviously she was worried that FPJ might win in a tight race.

How to explain Obama's Loss?

Mickey Kaus offers 4 theories.

Bill Kristol's debut article in the NYT Opinion

President Mike Huckabee

Did you hear Hillary's victory speech in NH?

Did you notice the one word she did not mention?

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Neal Cruz: Erap Wants Vindication, May Run in 2010

From Neal Cruz:

Is former president Joseph Estrada running again for president in 2010? Estrada is coy about it, alternating his answers between “I have no plans on running” and “I will if the opposition does not come up with a common candidate,” but reading his body language and analyzing his answers in an interview (we interviewed him last Sunday at his home in San Juan), one comes up with the conclusion that he will.

It is almost impossible that the opposition can agree on a common candidate. Ten horses cannot hold back Senate President Manny Villar or Sen. Mar Roxas from running for the top position in 2010. Neither will either of them slide down to the vice presidential slot. So Estrada will have an excuse to throw his hat into the presidential ring....

Should we take Estrada seriously or take him with a grain of salt? Will he or will he not run?

As I see it, he will -- if he sees overwhelming support from the people in his sorties. I think he wants vindication. And revenge, after all, is sweet.

And I heard Erap only plans to stay in office for 3 years if elected again.

Under a term-sharing scheme, Estrada would serve for only three years and his vice president, the remaining half of the six-year presidency, according to Rodriguez.

this reminds me of "disgraced" Sen. Trent Lott who resigned a few months after winning re-election in 2006 to work in the lucrative lobbying business.

For Trent Lott, 2007 was a year of redemption and vindication — and of surprises.

He shocked many of his colleagues by unexpectedly winning the race for Senate minority whip last fall — and then shocked them again last month when he announced he was leaving to cash in on K Street.

Sure, making it appear as though you are leaving to profit from your congressional contacts might not be the most dignified departure. But it beats getting run out of town because you were widely perceived as praising the segregationist ways of then-Sen. Strom Thurmond.

In 2002, He was forced to step down as Senate Majority leader after he praised the segregationist ways of Strom Thurmond. He did not resign from his senate seat after the "demotion", pero nabawasan ang impluensiya at clout niya sa Senado. Winning re-election in 2006 and getting elected as Senate Minority Whip was his way of redeeming and vindicating himself.

MORE: So... Is MLQ3 saying Erap is a spent force that has little chance of winning in 2010 if allowed to run?

The Mac is Back

McCain wins New Hampshire.

Btw, I like Cindy Mccain's hair better this way...

Cindy Mccain

Than the previous "Big Hair" style..

Cindy Mccain

Ron Paul is Racist

Read this here and here. Hey Jay Leno, now you know why this creep was not included in FOX's debate last sunday.

UPDATE: Andrew Sullivan supports Ron Paul, btw. Sullivan stopped supporting Bush because of gay marriage in 2004. What does he now think of Ron Paul's bigoted attacks vs gays.

Weekly Standard: A fitting end for Ron Paul.

WORD!

Want to stop a potential Noli de Castro candidacy?

Easy. Impeach Arroyo in 2009 for Election fraud and corruption. Whether Noli decides to stay on and assume the presidency or if he resigns, it's LOSE-LOSE for him. Here's why.

And for people who are worried about Noli as acting president, if you impeach arroyo in 2009, you get to elect a new president in 2010. Isang taon lang ang stay ni Kabayad sa pagka-presidente.

So two birds in one stone. Not only do you effectively prevent a possible Noli presidency beyond 2010, you get to put arroyo and garci in jail too.

Damn, the Crying worked

Hillary is leading Obama 39% to 36% with 63% votes precincts tallied.

UPDATE: Can we say it na? The Comeback Girl?

I think this is shaping up to be a Clinton-Obama ticket.

"Hillary Cried, Barack Died"

UPDATE: For people who don't know about the "Crying incident", check out the video.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Watched Last night's Fox Debate for Republicans

You gotta love these debates. It's much better to watch them unfold than to just read the reports re them the following day from blog or news sources. FOXNEWS debates are never boring.

anyway, after watching the debates, here's how i rank the candidates' debate performance.

1) Romney
2) Mccain
3) Rudy
4) Fred
5) Huckabee (kulelat)

COMMENT: Great debate, and Romney won the debate. He gave intelligent answers and scored hits on McCain and Huckabee. I liked the way he pick Huckabee apart with his tax questions. McCain did okay too, especially when he toned down his nasty attacks against romney. He was strong on national defense. If I were McCain or Giuliani, I would not be too worried about Huckabee. The guy is a disaster everytime he opens his mouth to talk about foreign policy. Fred is MEH. Rudy gave strong answers re fighting poverty and terrorism. And he reminded us how he turned a crime-ridden New York city around and made it safer and economically booming. New York 17th largest economy in the world. Huckabee's just a slick talker, nothing else. Likable.

The Woman Who Changed the World

Not Hillary Clinton. Heard of Jeri Ryan? (via Jonathan Adler)

VIDEO: Hillary gets teary eyed at campaign event

(via Althouse) Is she frustrated, tired, or is this just a calculated attempt to get our sympathies?

Monday, January 07, 2008

Are Japanese people actually Jewish?

Watch the documentary. You make the call.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

UPDATE: Which Survey outfit had it right in Iowa?

We'll soon find out.

UPDATE: It turns out the Des Moines Register Poll got it right.

Hillary on Letterman, Huckabee on Leno Tonight

Here's confirmation on Hillary's appearance. Mike Huckabee will get a boost with Leno's show.

Will Huckabee perform tonight with his electric guitar, like clinton did with his sax on the ARsenio Hall show?

UDPATE: Huck plays "pride and joy" with Mama's Kicks



Schedule alert: I believe David Letterman has a new home and schedule: ETC, 11pm tonight. Leno will be on JACK TV, 10pm too.

UPDATE: Huckabee jams with Tonight Show band.

The reviews are in.

UPDATE: David Letterman and Conan O'Brien are BACK (w/ Beards!)

Conan O'Brien (source)

David Letterman (source)

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Ermita backs Charter change to accommodate Moro homeland

From Christine Avendaño of the Inquirer:

A new proposal that will see the government resorting to constitutional amendments possibly in 2008 to push the stalled peace negotiations with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) would likely have the backing of Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita.

“If this will help peace talks and governance in Mindanao, why not?” Ermita said in expressing his possible support for the proposal that government officials were expected to present to President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and her security officials to move forward the negotiations.

Ermita said that the government peace panel was expected to make a presentation of its new proposal to bring back the MILF to the peace table in mid-January.


i support a charter change move if it ONLY specifically deals with the moro homeland issue, having a presidential runoff if nobody gets more than 50% of the vote, AND voting for senators by region–nothing more, nothing less.

any other amendment this administration, it’s allies OR the CBCP wishes to insert other than the ones i listed above is superfluous and a deal breaker.

UPDATE: The MILF doesn't trust the Arroyo admin, thinks this scheme is a trick.

UPDATE: The fear here is that this corrupt administration will use the MILF issue to once again attempt to change the Constitution for their own agenda.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Isagani Cruz on MTRCB's Censorship tactics

link.

Fred Thompson's an Introvert, Not Lazy

I think there is something to Rich Lowry's theory:

My experience yesterday, plus watching that video a while ago of Fred interacting with the firemen (which wasn't nearly as bad as Roger Simon made it sound), has me thinking that Fred isn't "lazy" as everyone says, but that he may be an introvert. An introvert can't stand—and finds exhausting—random interactions with strangers, which is why so few introverts are politicians. Those that are either are anomalies or fiercely willful people whose ambition makes it possible from them to punch through their natural resistance to all the painful socializing a politician has to do. This is why Fred would want to do a different kind of campaign, one based on web videos and blogs and the like rather than the usual glad-handing on the stump. Just a theory, fwiw.

The more i think about it, the more i agree. Here's another example.