Category Archives: middle class

Thursday ∗ 04 May 2017

Dear Smart,

I’d write about this in my column, but there are so many more important things to talk about in that space. At the same time, I couldn’t let this pass, just because this is how big businesses gets away with charging their subscribers more than they should, and often it is an injustice to those who are putting out our hard-earned cash for services that are overpriced to begin with. I’ve been a super sipag, consistent, and loyal subscriber of what … nine years?… Continue reading »

Monday ∗ 01 May 2017

Elitism in the time of Duterte

The upside to having a President like Rodrigo Duterte is that we are finally weeding out the elitists among us. And I don’t mean those who think that Duterte is so bastos, is so not a statesman, is so not President-material because not disente. No, this is beyond just some good ol’ Liberal Party campaign elitism. This is its more evil, less apologetic, more insidious twin. Elitists who even imagine themselves to be pro-poor, because they feel for them and… Continue reading »

Tuesday ∗ 14 Feb 2017

Bad romance

Probably the only thing worse than the fact that one is silenced in many ways by nation is the truth that in place of that silence is a male voice that says: we love you, we care for you, we will cherish you. That this voice also carries us through any romance we might have with men is foregone conclusion. That we might believe this voice is not surprising. There’s that thin line drawn between romantic and romanticized after all,… Continue reading »

Friday ∗ 27 Jan 2017

Taxes, freelancers, cultural work: Amnesty and kindness

One of the more critical battles that any cultural institution should be waging at this point is the one against the unjust taxation of freelance cultural workers. This was one of Daang Matuwid’s most unkind tax policies, which was put into effect by former tax chief Kim Henares, for whom it didn’t matter how much a person earned, what mattered was that government could collect taxes on those earnings. I had hoped President Duterte’s men would take a look at… Continue reading »

Saturday ∗ 02 Jul 2016

Inauguration day #Du30 #Day1

Today is inauguration day, the official start of Rodrigo Duterte’s presidency. Yet if we were looking at the past month or so since the May 10 elections, Duterte’s been blamed for most everything that has happened, including Abu Sayyaf’s kidnapping spree, and the spate of killings since elections. Never mind that these crimes are happening under the Aquino government.

Sunday ∗ 24 Apr 2016

The urgency of the environment #Eleksyon2016 #EarthDay2016

I had started on this series on the environment – from urban development to climate change – because the early press releases on today’s debate declared that the topics would be about disaster preparedness, climate change adaptation, health care, education, and fighting corruption. Since last Sunday though, I’ve heard otherwise, and if the grapevine is correct it will be a free-for-all (yet again!) as far as topics are concerned. Also, if my news is correct, today’s #PiliPinasDebates2016 will include a… Continue reading »

Friday ∗ 22 Apr 2016

Leading by example #Eleksyon2016

I’m pretty sure Malacañang knows it, we all know it, and even the voting masses can see through it: that when the Palace uses public money to talk dirty about Mar Roxas’s political rivals, that in fact, it is doing the classic foot-in-mouth. So when it says the next President must “lead by example,” one cannot help but ask: so what kind of example has this current administration been for all of us the past six years? If they’ve been… Continue reading »

Wednesday ∗ 06 Apr 2016

Tungkol sa kultural na paggawa

Walang pagkilos na kultural na hindi nababalot ng kontradiksyon. Kontradiksyon ang eleksyon at ang pagsampa ng kahit na sinong artista sa entablado ng sortie. Kontradiksyon ang pagsusulat bilang hanapbuhay para sa pulitiko. Kontradiksyon ang pagsusulat ng opinion column para sa diyaryong pagaari ng big business o oligarkiya. (AKO)

Tuesday ∗ 29 Mar 2016

Social / media bias #Eleksyon2016

If I were the Liberal Party, I’d be congratulating myself. After five years they have successfully dumbed down public discourse, selling us the true, the good, the beautiful about matuwid­ na­ daan, making us believe that it is all we need, handling criticism and crises via spin, always using notions of anti­corruption and transparency to respond to anything at all.

Wednesday ∗ 17 Feb 2016

Pacquiao self-destructs

we knew it was coming yes? i mean Manny Pacquiao was always coddled and forgiven, he could do no wrong. this is what we tend to do for anyone we declare hero. because in a nation in dire need of some good vibes, some wins in the midst of too many losses, we make heroes out of, and i paraphrase Pia Wurtzbach here: basketball stars, beauty queens, and boxers.

Monday ∗ 04 Jan 2016

15 from 2015: kultura

I wasn’t very good at doing arts and culture in the country the past year. But here’s a list of the strange, the good, the surprising in culture for 2015, not at all a best or worst list because … see the first sentence. First a critical aside: having worked as dramaturg for Kleptomaniacs and a bit with Tanghalang Pilipino in 2014 meant keeping the theater reviews to a minimum in 2015. I needed that time to let go of the little inside stories that I know,… Continue reading »

Sunday ∗ 15 Nov 2015

Of silence, Paris, the Lumad

The month’s been long and it isn’t even over yet. Much of my mind and heart have been taken over by Lumad stories, ones that we rarely hear about first hand, and so it’s been critical (at least for me) to hear the Lumad themselves speak. But of course this came with the realization of distance. How far is a land like Mindanao to Luzon, how far is Surigao, Davao, CARAGA, SOCCSKARGEN, from Manila. If the silence that surrounded the Lumad killings are any indication, it could… Continue reading »

Thursday ∗ 09 Apr 2015

yaya meals and the sushal indignation

AFTER gaining such mileage for being the resort du jour for fancy weddings and exclusive pictorials (READ: the Senator Chiz Escudero-Heart Evangelista nuptials) – the kind that makes you wonder if it’s even in the Philippines at all – Balesin Island Resort has gotten the kind of press any business for the wealthy and elite would love. Or hate. As the resort’s press release has inadvertently asked: What is this hullaballoo?

Thursday ∗ 05 Jun 2014

#YesAllWomen

i had watched the hashtag #YesAllWomen take a life of its own on Twitter, and was fascinated that while it didn’t trend in the Philippines, the tweets from elsewhere in the world (mostly the US it seems) resonated with this Pinay so removed from that context. i’m the last to imagine universality to be a valid enterprise, imagining as i do that we are always more complex than just being / standing for / standing against one thing. yet it… Continue reading »

Wednesday ∗ 19 Feb 2014

space for troubled youth: on Toilet The Musical

It was funny that before I could find where exactly Toilet The Musical was being staged in the Ateneo campus, I first had to happen upon the Rizal Mini Theater where Antigone The Musical was being staged. It made me want to try and get into the latter — for how fun that sounded after all! — but then again, Toilet was making a promise difficult to refuse: it’s an all-original Filipino musical. That it had Ejay Yatco at the helm might be exactly what kept me… Continue reading »

Tuesday ∗ 14 Jan 2014

in defense of Enteng Kabisote*

I agree with some of what Lourd de Vera says (or asks) Vic Sotto in his open letter. I agree that Bossing Vic should aim to do better than a movie filled with product placements. I agree that he should do better than a film where he’s not stuck with a non-kiddie-actor Yap and his mother Kris Aquino. I disagree that this was all Bossing’s doing.

Monday ∗ 06 Jan 2014

Pinoy social and online media 2013 (Part 3)

Last of three parts. 2013 elections and social (and online) media reveal its class. And its limitations. Social media screamed bloody dynasty at the Binays during the May electoral campaign, when Jejomar’s daughter Nancy decided to run for the Senate, she with no track record of public service whatsoever. This pointed to an arrogance really, where fielding Nancy as Senator was to say that it doesn’t matter why she qualifies, what matters is that her last name is Binay. Yet… Continue reading »

Sunday ∗ 05 Jan 2014

missing the point

it is a waste of time, but also utterly insensitive and absolutely unnecessary for anyone at all in government to be talking at this point about looting on the one hand, and proposing a level-up on the punishment against looters on the other, obviously contextualized as it is in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan. this is what Muntinlupa City Representative Rodolfo Biazon is doing by filing House Bill 3367. he is also missing the point.

Tuesday ∗ 15 Oct 2013

miracles

I helped out with the August 26 Million People March, with the September 11 EDSA TAYO, with Pork Day the 13th and Rock and Rage Against Pork on September 13. It was all a matter of knowing that extra hands would be useful, and while for the August 26 MPM it was clear that one person who was part of the meetings to organize the event was going on a totally different tangent, the rest of us were united in… Continue reading »

Monday ∗ 23 Sep 2013

faith

The task, to me at least, seems simple enough. We want to continue the fight against pork barrel. We find it in our hearts to come together, no matter our politics, our religious beliefs, our social class. The latter of course, as it turns out, is the worst division there is, mostly because it is not something we like—or know— to talk about. Anyone who even had her eyes wide open at the August 26 rally would know that the… Continue reading »

Thursday ∗ 29 Aug 2013

first #ScrapPork rally lessons

There are many things I learned in the course of helping out with an informal volunteer group that was formed for the August 26 Scrap Pork rally at the Quirino Grandstand in Luneta.

Tuesday ∗ 27 Aug 2013

one post-#ScrapPork rally reflection

this is by my Tito Butch, who was at the #ScrapPork rally yesterday at 7:00AM, precisely because his peg was the three past Nazareno festivals and he was afraid the Quirino Grandstand would get that filled and unwieldy. there was of course nothing to fear. and here his reflection on yesterday’s rally, the first of many #ScrapPork rallies, if my wish that it be done every month is actually granted by the every-citizen.  

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