Wednesday, March 31, 2010

After Fasting to Ask for a Miracle, I Now Fast to Say Thanks

On Holy Thursday last year ( April 9, 2009), i started what i had intended to be a seven-day Fast for what we believed to be a miracle to stop the House of Representatives from passing Mark Cojuangco's House Bill for the revival and operation of the excessively expensive and overly hazardous Bataan Nuclear Power Plant. That time, Cojuangco could already count on more than an overwhelming majority of House members, whose signatures he had already gathered.
. I started the Fast with minimal publicity, something that puzzled many among those who knew about the protest action, and reinforced their view that it would have no effect at all. Explaining why i didn't set up a media plan, considering the life and death importance of the issue. Was it because the mass media and the public would only give attention to newsworthy personalities and groups and this private citizen is a virtual nobody? i explained to them the nature of the fast that I started Holy Thursday: it was a prayer. And I have always believed that “Someone in the Great Somewhere hears every word.” Moreover, I was praying for a miracle, and only that “Someone” could cause that. I felt that God had to be asked for a miracle akin to what happened to Saul of Tarsus on his way to Damascus.”
While my fast lasted, before some fellow oppositors to the BNPP revival started doing their sympathy fasts and accumulating enough total hours ro relieve me of the last full day and a half of my declared seven days, i wrote a common letter to each of the members of the House of Representatives to at least read the Malacanang-commissioned report under the Aquino administration detailing more than 4,000 defects of the BNPP as built and mothballed, before deciding definitively whether or not to vote in favor of the BNPP revival bill. Using my laptop and a nearby internet cafe, I sent out my letter to the House members.
As expected, the whole thing was almost completely ignored by the media. Information on it was spreading mainly by emails and text message i was sending out to people who had resason to be concerned for my health and safety. Many of them were opinion leaders and information amplifiers. Much more importantly, as the 'I believe' song lyrics affirmed, the prayer was heard by that "Someone in the Great Somewhere," the only one who could touch the hearts and minds, the consciousness of enough House members to withdraw their preliminary signaures from the BNPP bill. The momentum for it's being railroaded by the House lost its steam, and up to now, it has not been scheduled for Third Reading and plenary voting. I have reason to believe that the Fast lat year has had some effect.
(You can read more perinent info, Ayu-NO against the BNPP from articles in the website, including the chronology accounts in
To commemorate the anniversary of Ayu-NO Laban sa BNPP! that i started on Holy Thursday last year, and to underscore my/our gratitude for the loss of momentum of the BNPP revival bill, i will start this Holy Thursday (April 1, 2010) a three-day fast. Anyone who wishes to join me is welcome to do so wherever they may be on these three days. All my other friends are just asked to share and ponder with many others the broad implications of this blog posting.
thankful cheers!
. ding reyes
. of zambales

Friday, March 26, 2010

TASYO!: Buhay pa nga ba itong Aklat?

Huwag mo sanang ikagulat...
Buháy pa nga yatà itong Aklat!

Buháy pa nga ba itong aklat na TASYO: Ngayon na ba ang Bukas sa Habilin ng Pantas?? Tapos na nga itong isulat; nagawa na ngang maisulat hanggang sa bahaging nilagyan na ng katagang "wakas!" at sa ganoong pagkakaayos ay ginastahan na ito para maipalimbag; atnoong Pebrero 4 ito'y nailunsad, at mula noon ay nagsimula nang lumaganap.

. Ano pa ba ang kasunod na mga naganap at magaganap kaya't may magsabing "tila buháy pa nga yata itong aklat!" Basahin mo sana ang buong artikulong ito na nagpapakita na ang buong kasaysayan ng sulating ito, mula sa pinag-ugatang eksena sa Kabanata 25 ng Noli Me Tangere, kasama na ang paulit-ulit na nabingit ito sa pagkakasunog, nailigtas lamang sa may-pagkamisteryosong paraan. Narito siya:
Damhin mo ang misteryo, saksihan mo ito, lahukan mo pa... lalo na ang pagtatangkaang sagutin na ngayon nang tiyakan ang tanong na naghahamon: Ngayon na ba ang Bukas sa Habilin ng Pantas? Kaya na ba nating totohanang maintindihan ang isinulat ni Pilosopong Tasyo na hindi raw posibleng maintindihan noong panahon nila nina Crisostomo Ibarra, mahigit isandaang taon na ngayon ang nakalilipas? O ang susunod pang mga henerasyon ang makakaunawa? Sinabi noon ni Rizal na totoong lahat ng mga pangyayaring isinulat niya sa Noli Me Tangere, "mapatutunayan ko!" Akala ko noon, fiction lang talaga ang Noli!

. Buti pa siguro, basahin mo sandali, o kahit simulan mo lang ngayon ang pagbasa, ng maikling nobelang ito, na nagsisimula sa Pagkatapos mong mabasa ito, padalhan mo ako ng komentaryo. Pati kwento ng mga ipinagawa sa iyo ng munting libro. Sabi ko na nga, buhay pang talaga itong aklat na nagsimula nang lumaganap! At ang mga kwentong matatanggap ko ay magiging bahagi ng "epilogue" na ipapaloob sa ikalawang edisyon nito.

. Lalabas ang edisyong iyon bago maitanghal sa entablado ang maikling nobelang ito.

Sunday, March 21, 2010


inner beauty (as blessed and heroic) shining through (a great-looking face and body) has been a divine gift to our friend and candidate Risa Hontiveros. It's a divine gift given to us, too; we have been very gratefully glad and proud to have Ms. Risa as our senatorial candidate in this "magandang laban ng mamamayang Pilipino for better politics and better governance.
We are very thankful for who and where she is in this unfolding historic drama.
SI RISA HONTIVEROS ANG MAGANDANG LABAN ng mamamayang Pilipino sa eleksyong ito at sa kasunod pa nito, kapag Senadora na si Risa.
Kaya't ganado tayong lahat na ipanalo ang labang ito!

--ding reyes
subic, zambales
march 22, 2010

Friday, March 19, 2010

Decade to Decisively Defeat Colonial Mentality

That question that i posed few days ago about Magellan and the great date mistake of Pigafetta was posed to kick off an entire year of preparation for the Decade of Deep Discourse for Decolonization and for the Decisive Defeat of Colonial Mentality.

. That one year is from now till March 2011; the decade for the decisive defeat of colonial mentality and its effects is March 2011-2021. March 2021 will be the 500th year of our first interlude with colonialism and eventual victimization, with colonial mentality lasting to this day and is likely to live on well beyond that half-millennium mark.

. We have to decisively defeat colonial mentality; it has harmed us enough! more than enough! That kind of mind-set, which caused us to be predisposed to be all too trusting of powerful foreigners like the U.S. government and big business, and to be all too forgiving of their "petty"/"minor" misdeeds, rendered us very vulnerable to thinly veiled or even outright crimes against our collective interests.

. For instance, we have forced ourselves to forget, and we have been forcing our children to not know at all in the first place, that there was such a chapter in our history as the Filipino-American War. Those of us who can't erase it completely from our annals, often try to find justification for American military killing about a million of our ancestors, saying we provoked, we resisted, we were "stubborn" for our freedom and sovereignty--our fault entirely.

. Corruption can indeed be blamed as a major factor in our mass poverty. But politicians' bigger offense has been their subservience to colonial dictation over government policies and programs. From March 2011 to March 2021 is a deadline decade for us to rescue ourselves and the majority of the people from being mesmerized by our own colonial mentality. And in the whole year from now to then we should discern exactly how we would be able to win decisive victory over 500 years of colonial mentality in just 10 years.

. This will surely be one big staggeringly difficult. Expect some of our own friends who are among the biggest victims of this mental malady to tell us how difficult this will be, to discourage us completely. Expect more items about this ambitious effort in this blogsite.

--ding reyes of zambales

. [For an in-depth and detailed discussion of the U.S. government's preparations (including preparing the American public mind) to justify the waging of that war, to justify the decision to annex us as a colony, and to justify the brazen barbarity they "had to" unleash on us, please read the relevent specific chapters and footnotes in my book Demands of Dignity (; give me some feedback, please.)]

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

"March 1521: 'Filipinos' Discovered Magellan"

Text at Facebook shout-out message ko kahapon, Marso 16…
“March 16 ngayon. Noong March 16, 1521, 489 years ago, may pangyayari daw na historically significant sa ating bayan. Totoo nga ba??? Ano'ng sagot mo??? (ano'ng nangyari, at bakit maituturing na makabuluhan iyon ?) Isipin mo munang mabuti!!!”

Narito ang mga natanggap kong mga kasagutan mula sa mga nag-text:
iya s. – si magellan yata, may nakitang isla.
dado s.a. – alam ko, aksidenteng napadpad dito yung ferdinand magellan. we discovered him.
josie m. – hehehe! di ba march 15? ang pagdating mga dayuhang kastila sa ating kapuluan!
ernie g. – 1521 magellan. sabi ni yoyoy villame, alter ego sila ni willie wowowee.
jhun a. – di ba pagdating ni magellan yon ang simula ng ng pagsakop ng mga kastila?
adolf p. – that was when our problems started. Instead of developing in our natural sustainableway, our land and our were abused to create wealth for others.
gani s. – sirit na.
ian r. – magellan landed in the philippines, ushered start of Spnish colonization?
amy r – very significant kasi pinasok tayo ng dayuhan. nagkaroon ng engkwentro. Naging violent ang dalawang panig. Significant kc di na tayo nakahulagpos.
jessie p. – are you referring to the history of mactan when magellan landed and was killed by lapu-lapu? Kung yun yon, mali ka! March 17 yon!
grace p.c. – yes, spaniards came to our shores
johnny j. – ayon sa kasaysayang nakatala… iyan ang pinagsamantalahan tayo ng dayuhang kastila, sinakop tayo
lia torralba (hipag ko) – ang nangyari noong mar 16, 1521 and dahilan kung bakit kulay coupon bond ang kapatid mo.
ed b. – yung mga punyetang Kastila, nakarating sa ating lupain.
mon d. l. l. – di ba pagdating ni magellan at ng mga kastila sa pinas?
vicky s. – magellan stole the philippines for spain.
rex d. – ang pagpapakita ng kagitingan at katapangan ng mga katutubo (na pinamumunuan ni lapu-lapu) laban sa pananalakay at tangkang pagsakop ng mga pangunguna ni magellan.
norma b. – kahit anong isip na gawin ko, labas haka-haka lang pero ok na rin na may founation date ang bansa, kaysa i-contest ko pa.

Mga tugon sa Facebook:

al a.: "Sabi ng part-time historikong si Yoyoy Villame: "On March 16 op 15hundred tweynti wan, da pilipins was diskuberd by magellan..." Op kors alam naman natin na di naman diniskober ang pinas! :-)"

joninay g: "Magellan got lost when he's supposed to go to spratley's island.. he ended up discovering the Philippines.. :) (discovering shouldn't be the term, but i can't think of better words..hehe"

aba luch d.: "The Philippines was discovered by Magellan
They were sailing day and night across the big ocean... / Until they saw a small Limasawa island / Magellan landed in Limasawa at noon / The people met him very welcome on the shore / They did not understand the speaking they have done / Because Kastila gid at Waray-Waray man / When Magellan landed in Cebu City / Rajah Humabon met him, they were very happy / All people were baptized and built the church of Christ / And that's the beginning of our Catholic life / When Magellan visited in Mactan / To christianize them everyone / But Lapu-Lapu met him on the shore / And drive Magellan to go back home / Then Magellan got so mad / Ordered his men to camouflage / 'Mactan island we could not grab' / Cause Lapu Lapu is very hard' / Then the battle began at dawn / Bolos and spears versus guns and cannons / When Magellan was hit on his neck / He stumbled down and cried and cried / Oh, mother mother I am sick / Call the doctor very quick / Doctor, doctor shall I die? / Tell my mama do not cry / Tell my mama do not cry / Tell my mama do not cry / That's the end of Magellan / In the island of Mactan long time ago / Ladies and gentlemen"

maria theresa b. s.: "Demarcation Line (Philippines-Spain)"

ryan c.: "Ang unang araw ng ating pagkaalipin, pagkasira ng ating kultura, at dangal at pagkakaroon ng colonial mentality ay nagsimula sa araw na ito? Ang pagkakaroon ng bulok na sistema sa lipunan at simula ng maling pag usad ng bansa na tinatamasa naten ngayon ay bunga ng March 16,1521. tama po ba? Haha"

Noong March 16, 1521, 489 years ago, may pangyayari daw na historically significant sa ating bayan. Totoo nga ba??? Ano'ng sagot mo??? (ano'ng nangyari, at bakit makabuluhan iyon ?) Isipin mo munang mabuti!!!

Una, walang mahalagang pangyayari sa Pilipinas noong araw na iyon. (alam ito ni Jesse P.) At ang tinutukoy ni Iya S. na may namataang isla si Magellan at ang sinasabi ng iba pa na naglanding daw siya at mga kasama niya mula sa hukbong Kastila, ay pawang nangyari noong sumunod pang araw, noon pang Marso 17! Papano namang nangyari iyon? Ang March 16, 1521 ay inilagay sa lahat ng history books natin noon, at pilit na ipinamemorya sa mga lolo’t lola natin, pati sa mga magulang natin, pati sa atin, at pati kay Yoyoy Villame! Pero may mali pala sa record book mismo ni Pigafetta, ang chronicler ni Magellan, dahil nang tumawid sila ng International Dateline sa gitna ng Pacific Ocean ay nalimutan niyang magdagdag ng isang araw sa petsang pinanghahawakan niya noon.

Pangalawa, at mas mahalaga pa, kahit Marso 16 o 17 man ang petsang ikabit natin sa pagdating dito nina Magellan, di naman iyon makabuluhan sa kasaysayan nating mga Pilipino. Ang sinasabing pagkakatuklas ni Magellan sa Pilipinas ay mahalaga sa kasaysayan ng Spain pero di sa kasaysayan natin. Ang dami-dami nang mga bansa noon ang nakakaalam na narito lang tayo; halos mga taga-Europa na lang ang ignorante pa noon ukol sa atin. Nang malaman nila na narito lang tayo, huling-huli na sila! Bakit magiging importante sa kasaysayan natin ang mga alam nila at di nila alam? Sumulat ako noon ng isang polyetong may pamagat na “March 1521: ‘Filipinos’ Discovered Magellan!”

At dahil nalipol ng mga ninuno natin sa Mactan ang mga Kastilang napadpad roon, 1565 na nang makapagsimula silang manakop, sa pamumuno na ni Legazpi. At maging ang pagkakasakop daw nila sa atin noon ay kontrobersyal pa. Pero ibang paksa pa iyon.) Ang mga krimen ng Espanya sa loob ng 333 taon mula 1565 hanggang 1898 ay nakadetalye sa libro kong Demands of Dignity, na mababasa ninyo sa Chapter 3 (Apology demanded from Spain) na nasa

May ispesyal na dahilan kung bakit ko ipinaaalala ang mga kaganapan noon 1521. Malapit nang mag-500 taon mula noong 1521. At aabutan nga yatang talaga ng 500 taon na may sakit na “kaisipang kolonyal” ang kamalayan ng karamihan sa ating mga kababayan. Papaksain natin ito sa ilan pang blog dito sa darating pang mga buwan at taon.

--ding reyes ng subic, zambales
marso 17, 2010

Sunday, March 7, 2010

An Informal Crash Course on PHIL. ELECTIONS

‘Filipino Suffrage-101’

An Informal Crash Course

Short Quotes excerpted from
“Exciting Adventures; Little Progress,
” 2004
By Prof. Ed Aurelio C. Reyes of Kamalaysayan

In the pre-election period of 2010, there are new details—some amusing and others simply exasperating—and I’d probably be writing about them a bit later.

But essentially, much of the new details have been covered by their underpinnings adequately discussed in the latest (2004) edition of Odyssey of the Filipino Voter: ‘Exciting Adventures, Little Progress,” which has also been completely uploaded quite recently in the “bookmakers” website of SanibLakas. To read the entitre book for free during this 2010 Election season, please click at

Here are some of the quotes highlighted in the pages of that book:

From the article “Odyssey of the Filipino Voter”:

Have the Filipino voters “arrived” for demo­cratic governance? Yes but only if they can wield the ballot as a sym­bol and means of asserting their own po­litical will.

From the article “Odyssey of the Filipino Voter”:

We have called (President Jose P.) Laurel’s administration a “puppet government,” and not that of Quezon who also served under a banner that is equally foreign.

From the article “Odyssey of the Filipino Voter”:

Political literacy is quite different from political maturity. The poor may have lacked the knowledge on what these posts should entail. But aren’t they, perhaps, politically matured enough to see that there are no sub­stantial con­trasts among our politicians, when it comes to their lives? When (the voters) say “Pare-pareho lang naman ‘yan!” can we really prove them wrong?

From the article “Political Values of the Filipino Voter, circa 1969”:

One factor that led to the exclusion of the aspect of personal integrity when one chose his presidential can­didate for the 1969 elections was that as far as ma­ny were concerned, there was not much choice.

From the article “Formal Democracy; Descent to Dictatorship”:

This act of calling out the troops from the barracks to perform political functions was irreversible, for this military would thence­forth be playing a consistently increasing role in the nation’s political life.

From the article “Formal Democracy; Descent to Dictatorship”:

Indirect colonialism worked! A local ty­rant was getting all blame for our woes, that worsened mainly by subservient economic programs that Marcos was obediently pursuing. In the end, it was projected that we stood much poor­er only by how much this tyrant and his group had stolen.

From the article “Formal Democracy; Descent to Dictatorship”:

After having been made to believe that our problem was only Marcos himself, many of our people went along with the assertion that the anti-Marcos rebellion was a real revolution.

From the article “Principled Vote as New Factor”:

The trapos were slinging so much mud on one an­other that they really were dis­crediting all the more their entire bunch.

From the article “Principled Vote as New Factor”:

But the NOTA logic has apparently remain­ed, with large numbers of voters and even some po­litically-active groups agonizing over the task of having to choose one president from this field of candidates.

From the article “Principled Vote as New Factor”:

Has the Filipino finally “arrived” as a voter? Or will he vote the way he and his parents have been voting all these past decades, resigned to and completely absorbed in the periodic farces?

From the article “Principled Vote as New Factor”:

The third-place showing of Roco could not have been attained if his supporters had voted for a “winnable lesser evil.” The prin­cipled issues-based vote is shaping up to be a factor to reckon with in subsequent elections.

From the article “Lessons and Milestones in ‘98”:

The most important lesson for all is that it is actually poss­ible for the majority of the elec­torate who are among the mar­ginalized in our society to decisively determine the results of a presidential election, not­with­standing contrary prefer­ences of the established poli­tical and economic elite.

From the article “Lessons and Milestones in ‘98”:

First lesson about Party-List voting is that the window of opportunity now exists. The second lesson is that there are difficulties every step of the way.

From the article “Suffrage in Democratic Governance”:

President Aquino’s policy posi­tion on debt, to re­pay all the debts of the illegal regime of Marcos, without asking for even just morato­riums on these and cancel­lation of the clearly illegal and onerous ones, has been the biggest single factor behind our annually growing gov­ern­ment budget deficits and our plunging peso-dollar exchange rates.

From the article “Suffrage in Democratic Governance”:

We should not limit our democratic right and duty to choosing which politician we would pre­dictably be blaming later, specific­ally at the time of the next election period. But are we not doing pre­cisely that?

From the article “Suffrage in Democratic Governance”:

Failures of govern­ment can not simply be blamed on those identified as trouble-makers, or as a result of widespread graft and corruption, but the result of no less than a sys­temic dysfunction in Philip­pine society.

From the article “Suffrage in Democratic Governance”:

Naivete and hysterical self-righteous­ness can re­ally cloud the otherwise lucid sensi­bi­lities of even our best-schooled intellect­uals.

From the article “Suffrage in Democratic Governance”:

A landslide elec­toral vic­tory can very easily be ‘corrected’ if enough peo­ple allow the rule of law to be flag­rantly set aside, upon the par­tisan passions of a few millions of people, against the ‘mistaken’ electoral verdict of tens of millions of voters.

From the article “Suffrage in Democratic Governance”:

Without the rule of law consistently up­held, all efforts to level the playing field during campaigns, all efforts to safeguard the ballot, all efforts to keep the count clean are very easily rendered utterly point­less.

From the article “Suffrage in Democratic Governance”:

Many self-righteous­ and unrepentant intellectuals of the elite are passing judgment on the majority of the voters as “still ignorant ,” totally ig­norant as these intel­lectuals are of the great dis­service they had dealt the nation’s adher­ence to the rule of law by their impa­tience about it all.

From the article “Suffrage in Democratic Governance”:

“If progress is to be shared and enjoyed by all, then it must be the achievement of all, resulting from joint effort of respons­ible citizens to make progress a way of life for the nation; not the from some sin­gular heroic effort of some exceptional individual who exists ony in myth.” (--Prof. Nito Doria)

From the article “Separative-Ego Blindfolds Can Result in Attachment to Partican Politics”:

In the country today, the force of darkness is having its heyday as people continue to choose to keep their separative ego blindfolds, expressing in, among others, the attachment to partisan politics. (--Surf Reys)

From the article “Separative-Ego Blindfolds Can Result in Attachment to Partican Politics”:

All wrong comes from separ­ative-self cen­tered­ness, or the ignor­ance of the reality of the oneness of all. And see­ing the wrong in others is a good oppor­tunity to see the mirror image of it in one­self, and choose to be rid of it first. . (--Surf Reys)

From the article “Long-Term Challenges”:

Voters must grasp in theory and enjoy in practice two relationships: our relationship with government and its functionaries, and our relationship with political power.

From the article “Long-Term Challenges”:

The summary of my “personal policy” toward (the Philippine) government is one of “maximum tolerance.”

I would not think of raising a call to overthrow it – that would be too much bother! I would rather spend quality time and enthusiastic energy on helping the people attain direct self-empowerment through synergy-building.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

No Need to Search Far for Our Own Noble Values

I was asked quite recently by a friend: "What is the difference between 'values' and 'virtues' if they both encourage positive behavior?" Her question had me thinking quietly for a while, before starting to attampt an answer: "virtues would refer to a developed personal predisposition to behave in a way that we validate our honor and dignity as persons, that would be helpful or at least pleasant to our fellow-humans, that would contribute to our collective attainment of the 'Prime Directive' to love one another."

. Put to its essential premise, we love one another not because anybody told us to, but rather more because we have atained enough wisdom to realize that, after all, we were all one, and doing anything that would harm 'others' or put them at disadvantage would actually be harming ourselves and putting ourselves at disadvantage.

. Being consistently virtuous is something valuable to everyone of us. But so is being comfortable, having a light workload is slso valuable; having pleasurable possessions is valuable; and being known and respected by many people is, of course, also valuable.

. When a person holds man things valuable simultaneously, and he knows he can't have everything, he begins to define his priorities, his own hierarchy of values. The problem with the term 'values' is that we often use this alone when it can only be clear within such phrases such as "hierarchy of values," or "personal values system."

. To choose as priority values those concerns that validate our human honor and dignity, the oneness of all humans, would be a virtue in my own consideration, but making more money well beyond my need is very low in my own hierarchy.
There are many written guides for human behavior that would be more virtuous (the Ten Commandments), highly effective (Stepen Covey's Habits); more spiritual (Redfield'sCelestine Insights); happier and more in harmony with others (Desiderata and the Katipunan's Kartilya), and many, many others.

. We don't hve to look far to find our own guide. Our very young sage, Emilio Jacinto, has long given us his Kartilya and the classic Liwanag at Dilim, among others, and there are many more that are as practical and universally applicable. Recently i composed a "Naitagong Habilin ni Pilosopong Tasyo," and it is now a centerpiece my growing novelette, titled "TASYO: Ngayon na ba ang Bukas sa Habilin ng Pantas?" published very recently.

. On the seventh day of every month, a growing number of Filipinos in the homeland and abroad, meditating on their own personal appliation of the Kartilya's 14 lessons on their lives. Anyone interested would just have to read the contents in and they are perpetually guided.

. We don't have to search verfar. e've had the Kartilya for more than a hundred years!

--ding reyes of zambales

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

'Villar should apologize to the people!' ---Rep.Risa

. The Richest Senatorial Candidate (who used to be a slumdweller kid in his childhood days in Tondo before very rich benefactors took him away from poverty, was told to apologize for making a mockery of existing laws on election campaigns. This is different from wrongdoings allegedly committed by Villar that put him in conflict with many of his colleagues in the Senate, like the C-5 cluster of cases.
. Former Speaker and former Senate President Manny Villar, was told this by Akbayan Rep. and LP guest candidate Risa Hontiveros for senator, who cited instances of vote-buying and other violations of the laws governing the 2010 elections including the conduct of the campaigns and the sourcing of campaign funds (see details in
. Meanwhile, Hontiveros has been reportedly inching her way to the winning column of senatorial candidates -- dominated by aspirants who are reelectionists, showbiz personalities, or both, and including presidential and vice-presidential aspirants -- Rep. Risa was reported to be 16th placer in the survey being cited by Abante Tonight, with just four senatorial bets to dislodge before being elected as a new senator by May 10. This development has been a source of encouragement for SenatoRisa campaigners to more actively campaign for her and for people-oriented politics in the remainder of the days before that date.

ding reyes of zambales
march 4, 2010
(comments may also be sent to me via

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Decades for Disclussing Disasters and Dangers

The KAMAYAN PARA SA KALIKASAN monthly environment forum, Kamayan Forum for short, is celebrating its 20th aniversary during its 241st monthly session to be held on Third Friday March 19 (10:30am-2pm, thru free lunch, courtesy its full sponsor for two decades, Kamayan Restaurant along EDSA) and the forum session's topic will be "Decades of Discussing Dangers and Disasters."
. We will celebrate, all right, but such celebration will have to face the challenge of answering two questions: "Has the Kamayan Forum made a dent on the environmental consciousness of the people, at least those based in the national capital region where most of the forum participants have been coming from?" and "What can we do to raise the level of our humble achievements, which have to be upgraded and maximized in the face of natural and nature-related disasters that have grown to be more severe and more frequent in just the past few years?
. The whole planet, with the Philippines as a particular flash point, is now facing greater magnitudes of danger looming and threatening to unfold fully in the next few years! What do we have to achieve in this decade and the next ones for a fighting chance to survive?

. To be sure, all the efforts would take decades, and the achievements should also have consequences spanning decades. Global warming has been caused by human thinking (?) and behavior that spannng decades, even centuries. Discussions about them have also spanned decades: on a global scale, the series of discussions in meetings, conferences, summit conferences, etc. that culminated in Copenhagen last year spanned decades. Even the very humble project, called Kamayan Forum, has already lived for two decades. Time is not the only element needed for success of the decades-long discussions.
. The spirit of the discussions should be the collective and synergized will power to seek together the truth that will set us free from the monstrous problems that we ourselves have created or at lease passively allowed to be created. If a minority that is strong but immensely powerful (as giant corporations and governments in their grip) can quite easily hold the process hostage just to protect and perpetuate the diaster-causing status quo, while the vast but unconsolidated majority demands radical changes in worldwide patterns, that spirit is nowhere present and debacles like the one in Copenhagen last December can only be expected.
. On a much smaller scale, as the vast majority of the most vulnerable stakeholders in the Philippine envirronmatal survival are not active enough, not informed enough, not even interested enough, to attend environmental forums like that in Kamayan, or not even to just read intently, understand and share with even just their families and small social groupings whatever conclusions and vital inormation emanate from these discussions, our collective inaction will continue allowing the enemies of the environment to destroy our living quarters, our libing home planet.
. Discussions will have to be earnest, participatory, and directed towards unified collective actions that would really address our grave and worsening environmental problems. Who should be active in those discussions? All who are aware of the problems and the needed collective actions to address them (Balik-Bayanihan for the Environment), and all who can be made aware of these. We have to reach out to those people who are now blissfully ignorant of very real dangers to their lives and their responsibility to stand up and be counted in the great “Balik-Bayanihan para sa Kalikasan.” Let the monthly face-to-face “plenaries” of “Kamayan para sa Kalikasan” have consultative and “echo” discussion sessions in the dinner tables at home, in classroom lecture-discussions, in the breaktime conversations in workplaces, and even in telephone and internet sharings.
. A new decade dawns for Kamayan Forum – where we will be shaking hands to seal agreements on observations, analyses, and concrete highly-participatory and highly-consequential actions, where we will be shaking hands in agreement to conserve nature and live close to its own Life-loving principles. It is a dawning of a new day of enlightened consciousness for our people (in the Philippines) far beyond Kamayan-EDSA's function room.