December 2009

Balitang Kutsero
by Perry Diaz

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

When Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s five-year-old granddaughter Marie Angelique — Mikey’s daughter — was asked by reporters what her Christmas wish was, she said, “I wish that my ‘lola’ (grandmother), I mean… I hope she’ll be President forever!” Makes one wonder if that was wishful thinking or self-fulfilling prophecy?

Now, that wouldn’t sit well with the eight presidential wannabes who are spending billions of pesos and thousands of hours only to see Lola Gloria keep the presidency for life!

My investigative reporter James Macaquecquec immediately called his “Deep Truth” informer in Malacanang and asked her the scoop on this. “Deep Truth” told James that there is a clamor among Gloria’s family members for her to remain President forever so they can all live happily in their “Enchanted Kingdom.” Then she said, “What Lola wants, Lola gets.” Masama na ito! (This is getting really bad!)

James called the top four presidential wannabes and asked their opinions. Here’s what they said:

Noynoy Aquino: “No way! I’ll will not allow that to happen! I’ll lead my Yellow Army to attack Malacanang and oust Gloria. It will be another people power revolution and — like my mom — I’ll be proclaimed President.”

Manny Villar: “I already spent billions buying votes. I won’t let that happen. With the leftists and communists on my left and the Marcos loyalists and oligarchs on my right, I’ll lead my Orange Army to attack Malacanang and oust Gloria. The presidency is mine!”

Erap Estrada: “I’ll tell all my wives and mistresses to rally the people to demand Gloria’s ‘constructive resignation.’ Gloria used that against me when she ousted me in 2001. It’s now my turn. It’s payback time!”

Gibo Teodoro: “Malaki and utang na loob kay Gloria (I owe Gloria a big debt of gratitude). I am loyal to her. Gloria forever! Gloria forever! Gloria forever!” Naloko na naman tayo! (We’ve been fooled again!)

                                                                                  ***

Ninety-one out of the 99 persons who filed their certificates of candidacy for president were disqualified by Comelec as “nuisance” candidates. Here’s some of them:

Self-proclaimed “international lawyer” Ely Pamatong, who was disqualified when he first ran for president in 2004, claimed that “he is better than anyone who has run for office before, making him wonder why the poll body had previously proclaimed him a nuisance candidate.” Well, as someone once said, “once a nuisance, always a nuisance.”

But Pamatong said: “I may not be a billionaire pero may utak ako (but I have brains). I scored 92 percent in the American Bar exams, graduate ako sa UP, Silliman University, undefeated debater ako sa UP, tapos tinawag akong nuisance (and you call me a nuisance)?” Well, these are good enough reasons why Pamatong has been disqualified: he is overqualified for the job.

Nick Perlas, who was also disqualified from running for president, said that his support from the Green Party of France and 50 other countries prove his “national and global presence.” But his ratings in polls taken in the Philippines were virtually zero. Maybe Nick should move to France and run for President there.

Mark Jimenez, a former congressman representing Manila, was also disqualified from running for president. He told the Comelec: “The only reason why I’m not qualified is because you are all afraid of me, everybody knows that.” Yup, Mark is right. Having served time in a U.S. federal prison, Mark could really be intimidating to some people.

Noel Aguirre, who claimed to be an “inventor,” was also disqualified from running for president. He said that he is more qualified to run than Sen. Jamby Madrigal. Noel said that he and Jamby were in the same situation — they’re both running as independent. But the big difference is: Jamby is a multi-billionaire heiress with no talent while Noel is a multi-talented inventor with no money. It’s a no-brainer, Noel.

                                                                               ***

By the way, former president Erap Estrada celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary with his first wife, former Senator Luisa Ejercito in December. Erap said that he believes strongly in the “sanctity of marriage.” Yup, that’s why he “married” six other women so he can be “sanctified” seven times. Does that make him a sanctimonious polygamist?

Erap, who was ousted by Gloria, convicted of plunder, and then pardoned by Gloria, might not win the presidency this time, but Jinggoy, his first son by his first wife, is now the frontrunner in the senatorial race. Jinggoy seems like he’s following the footsteps of his father… all the way to the presidency. And then what? Well, I hope it would stop right there.

Meanwhile, Gibo Teodoro was busy campaigning to improve his poor poll ratings. At a marketplace in Lucena, Gibo asked the fish vendors, “Do you have ‘tampal’ fish?” The vendors laughed. His wife, Nikki, asked what kind of fish was that? Gibo replied, “I can’t tell you in public because it’s censored.” Then he whispered, “It’s called tampal-puki.” “Bastos!” I googled “tampal-puki” and it’s real. It’s a fish shaped like a human palm. “Tampal” is a Tagalog word that means “to slap with the hand.” Talagang bastos!

Happy New Year!

(PerryDiaz@gmail.com)

 

PerryScope
by Perry Diaz

Gloria Arroyo.4Like in a game of chess, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is now playing the end game of her nine years of tumultuous — and scandalous — presidency. Indeed, her adroit chessmanship in the art of Machiavellian politics has earned her the scornful enmity of the people. Her recent net satisfaction rating of -38 is the lowest since 1986 in the waning days of the Marcos dictatorship.

With six months left in her presidency, how is she going to play the end game? Is she going to end it with the hallmark of magnanimous statesmanship or is she going to clear the board and move in for the kill?

Run for Congress

When Gloria filed her certificate of candidacy last November 30 for Pampanga’s Second Congressional District, many people were bewildered why she would want to remain in the political arena after serving almost a decade in the highest post of the land? After filing, she said: “I have been mulling of different ways to stay involved. Tiningnan ko ang pagbalik sa pagturo (I looked at possibly going back to teaching)… After much contemplation, I realized I am not ready to step down completely from public service. Gaya ng alam ninyo, hiniling rin ako ng mga mamayan ng aking tahanang distrito sa Pampanga na manatili sa buhay publiko (As you all know, the constituents of my home district in Pampanga asked me to remain in public life). After much soul-searching, I have decided to respond affirmatively to their call. To that end, I will file my candidacy for Congress in order to serve the hardworking people of my home province.” Poignant, indeed.

However, the question is: Did the people of Pampanga really clamor for her to run for Congress? Or were they primed by “power of suggestion” manifested in Gloria’s 50 campaign-like visits to her home district in the past 11 months? I tend to believe that Gloria orchestrated her province mates’ outpouring of support for her to run for Congress.

What’s strange though is that her son, Mikey, is currently serving as congressman of her home district and is still eligible to run for one more term before being termed out of office. But why did a promising young politician give way to his mother? Mikey could have told Gloria, “Mom, instead of serving the constituents of the second district, you can best serve the entire nation and all the people in a statesmanlike fashion like what your predecessors, Fidel V. Ramos and the late Cory Aquino, have done. You could have become the ‘grand lady’ of the Philippines.”

But Mikey didn’t have the heart — or courage — to tell his mother that. Gloria was hell-bent on running for Congress even at the expense of her own son; thus, denying her son the opportunity to remain in the House of Representatives, a stepping stone to higher office. She was determined to cling to power… at all cost. And to what end?

The end justifies the means

There are several theories why Gloria is running for Congress. The most popular theory is that she wants to amend the constitution to change the government to a parliamentary system. Recently, she admitted to that. It is presumed that once elected, she would vie for the Speakership of the House of Representatives, which would seem to be a piece of cake since her party, Lakas-Kampi-CMD, would likely be in control of the House next year.

But that is only one factor in the equation. For the whole equation to work, the newly elected president next year, whoever that might be, must be in sync with Gloria’s plan to amend the constitution. It is not surprising then that Gilberto Teodoro, her party’s presidential candidate, is openly in favor of Charter change. If Teodoro wins the presidency, then Gloria’s plan will be in play. And if everything works out as planned, she would become the country’s Prime Minister — with an indeterminate term of office.

What if?

But what if Teodoro lost the election? That would totally wreck Gloria’s plan. As a consequence, her House allies would desert her — nobody wants to associate with a loser — and start kowtowing to the new president who holds the key to the disbursement of their pork barrel allocations. Ironically, it’s the control of the pork barrel that gave Gloria the “power of patronage” which she cunningly used to keep the congressmen in line and acquiesce to her demands.

This is a scenario that would certainly scare Gloria to wit’s end. And with Teodoro’s approval ratings hovering in single digit, Gloria needs a contingency plan that she could invoke at any time should the prospect of Teodoro losing the election becomes crystal clear. And the key component of that contingency plan is the military whose top brass is seemingly loyal to her.

Militarization of the election

In the aftermath of the Maguindanao massacre, Defense Secretary Norberto Gonzales is in the process of arranging with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) a plan to deputize the military and put it’s personnel at the “full disposal” of Comelec. The overt objective of the plan was to “curb private armies and prevent a repeat of the Maguindanao massacre.” But what would prevent elements of the military from covertly doing — or supplementing — the work of the private armies of warlords allied with Gloria? Weren’t elements of the military used in the massive election cheating in Mindanao in 2004 and 2007?

Automated election system to go haywire

With the Smartmatic-TIM automated election system way behind schedule in delivery, testing, and training of the tens of thousands of election personnel, the likelihood of an “election failure” is not remote. And if that happened, Comelec could then recommend to Gloria to declare the election of national officers as “inconclusive” and therefore null and void. In that event, no president, vice president, and senators would be proclaimed to take office. Then what?

End game

Gloria would then put in place a “Transition Council” — a disguised civilian-military junta — with Gloria as its head. It was the brainchild of Defense Secretary Gonzales during his stint as Gloria’s National Security Adviser. Coincidence?

In politics nothing happens by coincidence.

(PerryDiaz@gmail.com)

PerryScope
by Perry Diaz

Gloria Arroyo.4Like in a game of chess, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is now playing the end game of her nine years of tumultuous — and scandalous — presidency. Indeed, her adroit chessmanship in the art of Machiavellian politics has earned her the scornful enmity of the people. Her recent net satisfaction rating of -38 is the lowest since 1986 in the waning days of the Marcos dictatorship.

With six months left in her presidency, how is she going to play the end game? Is she going to end it with the hallmark of magnanimous statesmanship or is she going to clear the board and move in for the kill?

Run for Congress

When Gloria filed her certificate of candidacy last November 30 for Pampanga’s Second Congressional District, many people were bewildered why she would want to remain in the political arena after serving almost a decade in the highest post of the land? After filing, she said: “I have been mulling of different ways to stay involved. Tiningnan ko ang pagbalik sa pagturo (I looked at possibly going back to teaching)… After much contemplation, I realized I am not ready to step down completely from public service. Gaya ng alam ninyo, hiniling rin ako ng mga mamayan ng aking tahanang distrito sa Pampanga na manatili sa buhay publiko (As you all know, the constituents of my home district in Pampanga asked me to remain in public life). After much soul-searching, I have decided to respond affirmatively to their call. To that end, I will file my candidacy for Congress in order to serve the hardworking people of my home province.” Poignant, indeed.

However, the question is: Did the people of Pampanga really clamor for her to run for Congress? Or were they primed by “power of suggestion” manifested in Gloria’s 50 campaign-like visits to her home district in the past 11 months? I tend to believe that Gloria orchestrated her province mates’ outpouring of support for her to run for Congress.

What’s strange though is that her son, Mikey, is currently serving as congressman of her home district and is still eligible to run for one more term before being termed out of office. But why did a promising young politician give way to his mother? Mikey could have told Gloria, “Mom, instead of serving the constituents of the second district, you can best serve the entire nation and all the people in a statesmanlike fashion like what your predecessors, Fidel V. Ramos and the late Cory Aquino, have done. You could have become the ‘grand lady’ of the Philippines.”

But Mikey didn’t have the heart — or courage — to tell his mother that. Gloria was hell-bent on running for Congress even at the expense of her own son; thus, denying her son the opportunity to remain in the House of Representatives, a stepping stone to higher office. She was determined to cling to power… at all cost. And to what end?

The end justifies the means

There are several theories why Gloria is running for Congress. The most popular theory is that she wants to amend the constitution to change the government to a parliamentary system. Recently, she admitted to that. It is presumed that once elected, she would vie for the Speakership of the House of Representatives, which would seem to be a piece of cake since her party, Lakas-Kampi-CMD, would likely be in control of the House next year.

But that is only one factor in the equation. For the whole equation to work, the newly elected president next year, whoever that might be, must be in sync with Gloria’s plan to amend the constitution. It is not surprising then that Gilberto Teodoro, her party’s presidential candidate, is openly in favor of Charter change. If Teodoro wins the presidency, then Gloria’s plan will be in play. And if everything works out as planned, she would become the country’s Prime Minister — with an indeterminate term of office.

What if?

But what if Teodoro lost the election? That would totally wreck Gloria’s plan. As a consequence, her House allies would desert her — nobody wants to associate with a loser — and start kowtowing to the new president who holds the key to the disbursement of their pork barrel allocations. Ironically, it’s the control of the pork barrel that gave Gloria the “power of patronage” which she cunningly used to keep the congressmen in line and acquiesce to her demands.

This is a scenario that would certainly scare Gloria to wit’s end. And with Teodoro’s approval ratings hovering in single digit, Gloria needs a contingency plan that she could invoke at any time should the prospect of Teodoro losing the election becomes crystal clear. And the key component of that contingency plan is the military whose top brass is seemingly loyal to her.

Militarization of the election

In the aftermath of the Maguindanao massacre, Defense Secretary Norberto Gonzales is in the process of arranging with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) a plan to deputize the military and put it’s personnel at the “full disposal” of Comelec. The overt objective of the plan was to “curb private armies and prevent a repeat of the Maguindanao massacre.” But what would prevent elements of the military from covertly doing — or supplementing — the work of the private armies of warlords allied with Gloria? Weren’t elements of the military used in the massive election cheating in Mindanao in 2004 and 2007?

Automated election system to go haywire

With the Smartmatic-TIM automated election system way behind schedule in delivery, testing, and training of the tens of thousands of election personnel, the likelihood of an “election failure” is not remote. And if that happened, Comelec could then recommend to Gloria to declare the election of national officers as “inconclusive” and therefore null and void. In that event, no president, vice president, and senators would be proclaimed to take office. Then what?

End game

Gloria would then put in place a “Transition Council” — a disguised civilian-military junta — with Gloria as its head. It was the brainchild of Defense Secretary Gonzales during his stint as Gloria’s National Security Adviser. Coincidence?

In politics nothing happens by coincidence.

(PerryDiaz@gmail.com)

Balitang Kutsero
by Perry Diaz

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Pacquiao Praying

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Manny Pacquiao’s revelation that he had a talk with God has created an international sensation among cultists. In a rare interview, my investigative reporter James Macaquecquec reported his conversation with Manny.

James: Manny, is it really true that you had a talk with God as reported in the news? As you know, the only other person who claimed to have talked with God was President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Manny: Bah! Gloria is a phony balloon.

James: Huh? Phony balloon? Oh, you mean “phoney baloney”?

Manny: Same thing. I’m the only one who can talk to God! He told me that Himself.

James: You’re pulling my legs, Manny. Prove to me that you really talked with God.

Manny: What? Pull your legs? What do you think I am, a quack doctor? Listen, it was on my birthday seven years ago when God appeared in my dream. He told me to go to Mt. Pinatubo and that He’ll give me the real 10 Commandments. He said it’s about time that His true commandments are revealed.

James: And? Did you go to Mt. Pinatubo?

Manny: Are you crazy! What if Mt. Pinatubo would erupt again!

James: Well, are you afraid that it will erupt while you’re up there?

Manny: Of course, I’m afraid. Look at what happened to Moses! He went up there and he was struck by a lightning and grew into a very old man.

James: That was Mt. Sinai, not Mt. Pinatubo.

Manny: Same thing. They’re both mountains.

James: So what did you do then?

Manny: Nothing. But God appeared again in my dreams three years ago. He told me that He’s disappointed that I didn’t show up at Mt. Pinatubo. But to prove that He loves me, He’s going to make me world champion seven times in seven weight classes. He also told me to run for political office next year. He said that I’ll win. He then told me to run for Speaker of the House. He warned me that Gloria will be my rival for the Speakership but not to worry because I’ll win over her.

James: Omigosh! Speaker of the House? That’s exciting! Did he tell you more?

Manny: He he he… Yep, He told me that after I become Speaker I should work to amend the constitution to change the form of government to a paramilitary system.

James: What? Paramilitary system? Or do you mean “parliamentary system”?

Manny: Same thing. He then said that once the constitution is amended, I should run for Prime Minister. He said that as Prime Minister I can transform the Philippines from a Third Class country straight to a First Class country, bypassing Second Class country. Wouldn’t that be great?

James: Manny, Manny, listen to me. You got it all wrong. What God probably meant was “from a Third World country to First World country.”

Manny: Same thing. He also told me that I’ll be “masaya” and the Philippines will become an “Enchanted Kingdom” in 20 years.

James: “Masaya” means “happy.” Is that what he really told you? Oh, I get it! He meant “Messiah,” the people’s savior, right?

Manny: That’s it! That’s it! “Mesaya,” the people’s sav… whatever.

James: Manny, you’ve been dreaming! These were the same things that Gloria had been telling the people for the past several years. Are you sure, it was God you’ve been talking to and not Gloria?

Manny: Well, I didn’t really see God. I only heard His voice. He has a man’s voice so it can’t be Gloria.

James: Manny, have you heard Gloria speak, right? She has a man’s voice! If you closed your eyes, you’d think that you’re listening from a man.

Manny: Hmmm… Gee, I think you’re right, James. Gloria does sound like a man when she talks.

James: You know what, Manny? What actually happened was that Gloria revealed to you her “master plan” on how to perpetuate herself in power beyond 2010! And you thought you were talking to God, huh? Ha ha ha…

Manny: I think you’re right, James. Now, I’m really mad, I’m going to urinate!

James: You mean you’re pissed off.

Manny: Same thing. I’ll campaign very hard to win a congressional seat next year and then I’ll compete with Gloria for the Speakership of the House. And I promise the Filipino people, I’ll beat her like I beat Morales, De La Hoya, Hatton, and Cotto. I’ll be the “Mesaya” and I’ll transform the Philippines into an “Enchanted Kingdom” within two years! Then I’ll crown myself as “Emperor Emmanuel the Greatest.” It will be the beginning of the Pacquiao dynasty which will rule the Philippines for two thousand years.

James: Omigosh! God save the Philippines!

PerryDiaz@gmail.com

Balitang Kutsero
by Perry Diaz

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Pacquiao Praying

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Manny Pacquiao’s revelation that he had a talk with God has created an international sensation among cultists. In a rare interview, my investigative reporter James Macaquecquec reported his conversation with Manny.

James: Manny, is it really true that you had a talk with God as reported in the news? As you know, the only other person who claimed to have talked with God was President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Manny: Bah! Gloria is a phony balloon.

James: Huh? Phony balloon? Oh, you mean “phoney baloney”?

Manny: Same thing. I’m the only one who can talk to God! He told me that Himself.

James: You’re pulling my legs, Manny. Prove to me that you really talked with God.

Manny: What? Pull your legs? What do you think I am, a quack doctor? Listen, it was on my birthday seven years ago when God appeared in my dream. He told me to go to Mt. Pinatubo and that He’ll give me the real 10 Commandments. He said it’s about time that His true commandments are revealed.

James: And? Did you go to Mt. Pinatubo?

Manny: Are you crazy! What if Mt. Pinatubo would erupt again!

James: Well, are you afraid that it will erupt while you’re up there?

Manny: Of course, I’m afraid. Look at what happened to Moses! He went up there and he was struck by a lightning and grew into a very old man.

James: That was Mt. Sinai, not Mt. Pinatubo.

Manny: Same thing. They’re both mountains.

James: So what did you do then?

Manny: Nothing. But God appeared again in my dreams three years ago. He told me that He’s disappointed that I didn’t show up at Mt. Pinatubo. But to prove that He loves me, He’s going to make me world champion seven times in seven weight classes. He also told me to run for political office next year. He said that I’ll win. He then told me to run for Speaker of the House. He warned me that Gloria will be my rival for the Speakership but not to worry because I’ll win over her.

James: Omigosh! Speaker of the House? That’s exciting! Did he tell you more?

Manny: He he he… Yep, He told me that after I become Speaker I should work to amend the constitution to change the form of government to a paramilitary system.

James: What? Paramilitary system? Or do you mean “parliamentary system”?

Manny: Same thing. He then said that once the constitution is amended, I should run for Prime Minister. He said that as Prime Minister I can transform the Philippines from a Third Class country straight to a First Class country, bypassing Second Class country. Wouldn’t that be great?

James: Manny, Manny, listen to me. You got it all wrong. What God probably meant was “from a Third World country to First World country.”

Manny: Same thing. He also told me that I’ll be “masaya” and the Philippines will become an “Enchanted Kingdom” in 20 years.

James: “Masaya” means “happy.” Is that what he really told you? Oh, I get it! He meant “Messiah,” the people’s savior, right?

Manny: That’s it! That’s it! “Mesaya,” the people’s sav… whatever.

James: Manny, you’ve been dreaming! These were the same things that Gloria had been telling the people for the past several years. Are you sure, it was God you’ve been talking to and not Gloria?

Manny: Well, I didn’t really see God. I only heard His voice. He has a man’s voice so it can’t be Gloria.

James: Manny, have you heard Gloria speak, right? She has a man’s voice! If you closed your eyes, you’d think that you’re listening from a man.

Manny: Hmmm… Gee, I think you’re right, James. Gloria does sound like a man when she talks.

James: You know what, Manny? What actually happened was that Gloria revealed to you her “master plan” on how to perpetuate herself in power beyond 2010! And you thought you were talking to God, huh? Ha ha ha…

Manny: I think you’re right, James. Now, I’m really mad, I’m going to urinate!

James: You mean you’re pissed off.

Manny: Same thing. I’ll campaign very hard to win a congressional seat next year and then I’ll compete with Gloria for the Speakership of the House. And I promise the Filipino people, I’ll beat her like I beat Morales, De La Hoya, Hatton, and Cotto. I’ll be the “Mesaya” and I’ll transform the Philippines into an “Enchanted Kingdom” within two years! Then I’ll crown myself as “Emperor Emmanuel the Greatest.” It will be the beginning of the Pacquiao dynasty which will rule the Philippines for two thousand years.

James: Omigosh! God save the Philippines!

PerryDiaz@gmail.com

Balitang Kutsero
by Perry Diaz

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

With former president Joseph “Erap” Estrada back in the campaign trail as a presidential candidate, it will be the season again for “Eraption” jokes. The following are some Eraptions that I found in the Internet:

How are a San Miguel beer bottle and Erap alike?
They are both empty from the neck up.

How do you confuse Erap?
Stick him in a round room and tell him to sit in the corner.

Why was the Erap proud for finishing a puzzle in only six months?
The box said “2 to 4 years!”

Why can’t Erap dial 911?
He can’t find the eleven on the phone!

How do you get Erap on the roof?
Tell him the drinks are on the house.

Why did Erap get fired from his job at the M & M’s factory?
He kept throwing out the Ws.

I’m pretty sure that as the election campaign warms up, there will be more Eraptions erupting.

My investigative reporter James Macaquecquec reported his exclusive interview with Erap. It goes:

When Erap ran for president the first time in 1998, his slogan was: “Erap para sa mahirap” (Erap for the poor). This time he changed it to: “Erap para sa mas mahirap” (Erap for the very poor). When James asked him why, Erap said, “It’s because the poor are now poorer because of the recession.”

When asked what he’s going to do to stop the recession if he’s elected president, Erap said, “I’ll issue a proclamation that there will be no more recess in the schools.”

Erap is accusing presidential rival Manny Villar of stealing his slogan. Manny’s slogan is: “Money para sa mahirap” (Money for the poor). When asked what’s wrong with that, Erap said, “Manny is taking away my votes by buying the votes of the poor.”

When asked how he can overtake frontrunner Noynoy Aquino in the race to Malacanang, Erap said, “That’s easy. I know a short cut route to Malacanang and Noynoy doesn’t know where it is. Ha ha ha…”

When asked what is his position on “climate change,” Erap said, “Well… uh… it’s the same way with my position on Charter change, NO WAY!”

When asked why he’s opposed to Charter change, Erap said, “Charter change will change our presidential form of government to a parliamentary system with a Prime Minister as the head of government. We cannot have a ‘minister’ to head the government because that would violate the principle of the separation of the church and the state.”

When asked what is his position on the Visiting Forces Agreement with the U.S., Erap said, “I’ll treat all visiting American soldiers just like any other tourists, they have to pay travel tax.”

When asked what he’ll do to improve English proficiency in schools, Erap said, “I’ll ask Manny Pacquiao to tell the school principals where he learned his English.”

When asked what he’s going to do to prevent being ousted like what happened in 2001, Erap said, “Gloria tricked me into signing a ‘leave of absence’ without reading between the lines. Well, next time they ask me to sign a document, I’ll have my wife read everything between the lines for me before I sign.”

James asked, “Which wife?” Oops. End of interview.

Talking about Manny Pacquiao… A news article says, “Pacquiao: I had a talk with God.” Pacquiao claimed that God promised him “strength and power.” He said, “I was not yet very popular and world champion when our God appeared to me and assured me of strength and power.” I think Pacquiao has been hanging out too long with Gloria who has been saying that God anointed her to rule the Philippines.

But Pacquiao and Gloria parted ways when Pacquiao bolted Gloria’s party to join Manny Villar’s Nacionalista Party. Balimbing! (Turncoat!)

Noynoy Aquino should watch out cuz if Pacquiao teaches Villar how to communicate with God, he would be in deep shit.

Lately, Tiger Woods admitted to having extramarital affairs. Now, he’s in trouble because more than a dozen women are now claiming that they had an affair with Tiger. Pacquiao — who’s alleged to be romantically linked to actress Krista Ranillo — should teach Tiger to just say, “No comments.” Remember, “No talk, no mistake” or should I say, “No mistake, no fun.”

But Pacquiao’s wife Jinkee is having all the fun when she opened her boutique last August in General Santos City called “Jinkee’s Fashion World.”

Recently, Pacquiao opened a novelty shop — 500 miles away in Manila — called “Team Pacquiao.” I heard that Pinoy paparazzi are stalking his shop waiting for Krista to show up. Now, that’s where the real fun is.

(PerryDiaz@gmail.com)

 

Balitang Kutsero
by Perry Diaz

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

With former president Joseph “Erap” Estrada back in the campaign trail as a presidential candidate, it will be the season again for “Eraption” jokes. The following are some Eraptions that I found in the Internet:

How are a San Miguel beer bottle and Erap alike?
They are both empty from the neck up.

How do you confuse Erap?
Stick him in a round room and tell him to sit in the corner.

Why was the Erap proud for finishing a puzzle in only six months?
The box said “2 to 4 years!”

Why can’t Erap dial 911?
He can’t find the eleven on the phone!

How do you get Erap on the roof?
Tell him the drinks are on the house.

Why did Erap get fired from his job at the M & M’s factory?
He kept throwing out the Ws.

I’m pretty sure that as the election campaign warms up, there will be more Eraptions erupting.

My investigative reporter James Macaquecquec reported his exclusive interview with Erap. It goes:

When Erap ran for president the first time in 1998, his slogan was: “Erap para sa mahirap” (Erap for the poor). This time he changed it to: “Erap para sa mas mahirap” (Erap for the very poor). When James asked him why, Erap said, “It’s because the poor are now poorer because of the recession.”

When asked what he’s going to do to stop the recession if he’s elected president, Erap said, “I’ll issue a proclamation that there will be no more recess in the schools.”

Erap is accusing presidential rival Manny Villar of stealing his slogan. Manny’s slogan is: “Money para sa mahirap” (Money for the poor). When asked what’s wrong with that, Erap said, “Manny is taking away my votes by buying the votes of the poor.”

When asked how he can overtake frontrunner Noynoy Aquino in the race to Malacanang, Erap said, “That’s easy. I know a short cut route to Malacanang and Noynoy doesn’t know where it is. Ha ha ha…”

When asked what is his position on “climate change,” Erap said, “Well… uh… it’s the same way with my position on Charter change, NO WAY!”

When asked why he’s opposed to Charter change, Erap said, “Charter change will change our presidential form of government to a parliamentary system with a Prime Minister as the head of government. We cannot have a ‘minister’ to head the government because that would violate the principle of the separation of the church and the state.”

When asked what is his position on the Visiting Forces Agreement with the U.S., Erap said, “I’ll treat all visiting American soldiers just like any other tourists, they have to pay travel tax.”

When asked what he’ll do to improve English proficiency in schools, Erap said, “I’ll ask Manny Pacquiao to tell the school principals where he learned his English.”

When asked what he’s going to do to prevent being ousted like what happened in 2001, Erap said, “Gloria tricked me into signing a ‘leave of absence’ without reading between the lines. Well, next time they ask me to sign a document, I’ll have my wife read everything between the lines for me before I sign.”

James asked, “Which wife?” Oops. End of interview.

Talking about Manny Pacquiao… A news article says, “Pacquiao: I had a talk with God.” Pacquiao claimed that God promised him “strength and power.” He said, “I was not yet very popular and world champion when our God appeared to me and assured me of strength and power.” I think Pacquiao has been hanging out too long with Gloria who has been saying that God anointed her to rule the Philippines.

But Pacquiao and Gloria parted ways when Pacquiao bolted Gloria’s party to join Manny Villar’s Nacionalista Party. Balimbing! (Turncoat!)

Noynoy Aquino should watch out cuz if Pacquiao teaches Villar how to communicate with God, he would be in deep shit.

Lately, Tiger Woods admitted to having extramarital affairs. Now, he’s in trouble because more than a dozen women are now claiming that they had an affair with Tiger. Pacquiao — who’s alleged to be romantically linked to actress Krista Ranillo — should teach Tiger to just say, “No comments.” Remember, “No talk, no mistake” or should I say, “No mistake, no fun.”

But Pacquiao’s wife Jinkee is having all the fun when she opened her boutique last August in General Santos City called “Jinkee’s Fashion World.”

Recently, Pacquiao opened a novelty shop — 500 miles away in Manila — called “Team Pacquiao.” I heard that Pinoy paparazzi are stalking his shop waiting for Krista to show up. Now, that’s where the real fun is.

(PerryDiaz@gmail.com)

 

PerryScope
by Perry Diaz

A survey conducted by Pulse Asia on October 22 to 30, 2009 showed that 86% of Filipinos look forward to the year “with hope” while seven percent will face the year “with apprehension” and another seven percent “without hope and without apprehension.”

By contrast, last year’s survey showed that 78% looked forward “with hope,” 11% “with apprehension” and 11% “without hope and without apprehension.”

In 2007, the survey showed that 84% looked forward “with hope,” 9% “with apprehension” and 7% “without hope and without apprehension.”

In 2006, the survey showed that 85% looked forward “with hope,” 8% “with apprehension” and 6% “without hope and without apprehension.”

In 2005, the survey showed that 70% looked forward “with hope,” 20% “with apprehension” and 10% “without hope and without apprehension.”

Looking back at these figures, it makes me wonder what were the factors which caused people to exude optimism that they would be better off the following year?

Let’s take a look at the events that happened in each of the previous four years:

In 2005, the country was rocked to its foundations with the exposure of the “Hello Garci” election cheating scandal and other anomalies that almost ejected President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo from the presidency. Fortunately for Gloria, but unfortunately for the country, former President Fidel V. Ramos and then Speaker Jose de Venecia Jr. — like the Lone Ranger and his sidekick, Tonto — came to her rescue just as she was about to flee from Malacañang to join her husband Mike and son Mikey who left earlier into self-exile in the U.S. Gloria survived her crisis but the country was never the same again.

In 2006, the scandals settled down a little bit providing the people with some relief. They thought that the worst had happened and that things were going to get better. But it turned out that 2006 was the lull before the big storm to come.

In 2007, amidst the “economic boom” loudly trumpeted by Gloria, the people’s mood changed from optimism to pessimism. “Hope” slid down 1% below the 2006 mark. It was the year when the ZTE-NBN scandal erupted which implicated Gloria and Mike for allegedly receiving huge “advance commission” — or kickback — from China for the approval of the multi-million dollar project. It was also the year when Gloria tried to “sell” the Spratly Islands to China. It was also the year when Gloria tried to sell huge tracts of agricultural lands — which is forbidden by the constitution — to China. It was also the year when Gloria was exposed by Gov. Fr. Ed Panlilio for bribing congressmen and governors. Indeed, it was the year when Gloria earned the ignominious title of “Most Corrupt President in the History of the Philippines” and the Philippines’ distinction as the “Most Corrupt Country in Asia.”

In 2008, “hope” went down by 0.6%. And what could have been the factor that caused “hope” to slide down? What came to mind was Gloria’s incessant attempts to perpetuate herself in power beyond 2010. And the “economic boom” that Gloria touted in 2007 burst like a balloon full of hot air. The hangover from the previous scandal-ridden year had, in my opinion, caused the highest percentages, 11% each, for “without apprehension” and “without hope and without apprehension.” As a consequence, it caused the lowest “with hope” percentage, 78%, since the “Hello Garci” scandal in 2005. Indeed, it was the year when the people’s optimism was doused with the cold reality of hopelessness.

But this year, “hope” dramatically increased to its highest level since Gloria came to power. Why? In my opinion, former President Cory Aquino’s death brought to the consciousness of the people the ideals that she and her martyred husband Ninoy Aquino stood for. Strangely, the evil Gloria was juxtaposed to the saintly Cory in the people’s minds, thus putting Gloria in a bad light. Like a bad karma, everything that Gloria did rubbed the people the wrong way. And to make matters worse, Gloria’s expensive dining spree at the pompous Le Cirque restaurant in New York City while the country was mourning Cory’s death infuriated the people. They perceived Gloria as callously insensitive and disrespectful of Cory.

It didn’t therefore come as a surprise that right after Cory’s burial, a popular clamor began for Cory’s only son, Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, to run for president. Spontaneously, Noynoy became the symbol of hope… and change.

After nine years of Gloria’s presidency, the thought of her stepping down from power next year gave a glimmer of hope that next year might be better than the previous years. Indeed, the survey has manifested that hopelessness has given way to hopefulness.

With the presidential elections coming up in May 2010, the people will have a rare opportunity to elect a leader — amongst the eight contenders — who could deliver them from the corrupt regime of Gloria.

But the people need to use their heads this time and vote for the candidate who has a compassionate heart for the powerless poor, not for the traditional politicians who glibly make the usual promises and buy their votes for a day’s meal.

Indeed, next year could bring forth the change that would improve the people’s lives, not the Charter change that Gloria futilely pursued to perpetuate herself in power. It could be the year when the people can begin to truly enjoy the abundance of their patrimony and the product of their labor.

May the spirit of Christmas enlighten and guide the Filipino people on the right road to peace and prosperity next year. It’s time for the people to seize the moment and transform their lives from a decadent state of hopelessness to a promising future of hopefulness.

(PerryDiaz@gmail.com)

Balitang Kutsero
By Perry Diaz

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Illustration by Dave San Pedro

Before filing her certificate of candidacy for congresswoman of Pampanga’s second district, Prez Gloria Arroyo attended a special mass at the St. Augustine Church in Lubao, Pampanga which was concelebrated by 22 priests. During the homily, Fr. Roland Moraleja said that the people in Pampanga need the leadership of Arroyo. He likened Gloria to Jesus Christ who “went down to serve” the people. It sounded like the “second coming” of Jesus Christ… or is it the Anti-Christ?

Is Gloria the Anti-Christ? If you count the number of letters in the names of Gloria and her husband Miguel Arroyo, it’s “666” — the mark of the Anti-Christ or the Devil.

When Gloria took her communion, my investigative reporter James Macaquecquec, who was near Gloria, overheard her whisper to the priest, “Thank you father, when I win I’ll make sure that the “Jueteng Lord” will increase your jueteng payola.” Kurakot!

James told me that word is out that a new processional hymn has been composed which will be sung in masses at St. Augustine. The new hymn is titled, “Gloria in excelsis Arroyo” (Glory to Arroyo in the highest).

James also said that Gloria’s son Congressman Mikey Arroyo, who’s not running for reelection to make way for his “dear mama,” will be placed in charge of church collections and quarry fee collections. Not bad for the new “Godfather” of Pampanga. Wasn’t he the reputed “Lion King” as well? Sounds like a kid in a hurry. Pretty soon he’ll be “El Presidentito” (The Little President).

Lilia “Nanay Baby” Pineda, wife of the reputed “Jueteng King” and “kumadre” of Gloria, is running again for governor of Pampanga, and her son — “anak ng jueteng” (son of jueteng) — is running for reelection as mayor of Lubao, the “Jueteng Capital.” It’s all in the family, folks.

Nanay Baby, who was defeated by Gov. Fr. “Among Ed” Panlilio in 2007, thought that Among Ed wasn’t going to run for reelection. But to her surprise, Among Ed filed his candidacy for governor at the last minute. This is going to be an interesting rematch — Among Ed believes that the good Lord will be with him while Nanay Baby says that the Lord of Jueteng is behind her. Folks, it’s going to be “power of prayer” against “power of money.” Like someone once said, “prayer can move mountains” but Nanay Baby thinks that her money can buy mountains. Stay tuned, folks.

Former prez Fidel V. Ramos said that Gloria diminishes the stature of the presidency by running for a local office. But didn’t Gloria already diminish the presidency when she grabbed power from Erap?

Many people believe that Gloria is running for Congress because she has set her eyes on the speakership of the House of Representatives. Well, she’s going to have competition because Imelda Marcos is running for Congress to represent her late husband’s district. Although Imelda has no Ilocano blood, Ilocanos see her as an “Ilocano by injection” and that’s good enough for them. Ngarud!

The 2010 presidential election is going to be a “labo-labo” (free-for-all) among the 99 “wannabes, maybes, and nobodies.” I counted five “wannabes” — Noynoy Aquino, Manny Villar, Erap Estrada, Gibo Teodoro, and Dick Gordon. The “maybes and nobodies” include spoilers and nuisance (“salimpusa”) candidates. Unfortunately, there will only be one winner and 98 who will be cheated.

Villar will do whatever it takes to win the presidency. With more than P7 billion in his war chest, Villar recently compared himself to US President Barack Obama. He said that he would be better than Obama in governing the country. Well, he’d better be better than Obama, otherwise the Pinoys are in for the greatest recession in Philippine history.

Villar said that “the next president should start working from Day One, not merely “learning the ropes” because the government is expecting a budget deficit of more than P300 billion by 2010.” It seems like Villar may have copied Hillary Clinton’s “Day One” line. But Clinton lost to the “inexperienced” Obama. Likewise, Villar could also lose to the “inexperienced” Noynoy Aquino.

Among the “wannabes,” Noynoy leads with a stunning 44% approval rating. Meanwhile, his cousin Gibo Teodoro is struggling with an anemic 2% approval rating. I’m not sure how Gibo is going to catch up with his cousin… unless La Gloria helps him with a call to her “friends” in Maguindanao like what she did in 2004 and 2007.

And at the last minute, Dick Gordon decided to run for prez with Bayani Fernando as his vice presidential running mate. The call themselves the “transformers.” Dick said that he and Bayani are going to transform the country. Yep, they’re going to transform the country from the “disenchanted kingdom” of Gloria into the “make-believe world” of Flash Gordon.

When presidential wannabe Bro. Eddie Villanueva was asked what he’d do in his first 100 days in office, he said that he “would immediately issue a presidential proclamation thanking God for allowing a ‘miracle’ to happen.” Well, that would take care of the first day. How about the next 99 days? He calls his ticket, “Dream Team.” Yep, it’s been proven that miracles do happen in dreams. Keep dreaming, Bro. Eddie.

Ex-convict Mark Jimenez — who is running for president — wasn’t dreaming when he said that he “would unify and come up with an agenda to make the Philippines a better place to live in.” Well, any country is a better place to live in than a US federal penitentiary.

“Presidential candidates reject law against political dynasties,” says a news report. That just shows that the presidential candidates themselves belong to political dynasties. Watch out for Manny Pacquiao cuz this is one guy who would create the biggest political dynasty in history. Manny is running for a congressional seat in Sarangani province. Well, there is a second “Manny Pacquiao” who is running for Vice Mayor of Cebu City. Rumor has it that Manny II is a clone of Manny I.

(PerryDiaz@gmail.com)