Category Archives: pulahan

Tuesday ∗ 27 Mar 2012

on #noynoying & Rocamora’s failed response

if there’s anything that #noynoying must take credit for, it is more than just that it has trended and landed in international media sites. the activist youth sector — and when i say that i mean Anakbayan — must take credit too for the fact that #noynoying has annoyed the likes of Joel Rocamora enough to speak out against it. and boy, does he speak out. and does he draw those lines like no one else has done. and boy does… Continue reading »

Wednesday ∗ 07 Dec 2011

why free Ericson Acosta

Ninoy Aquino and Ericson Acosta might seem light years away from each other, and yet i’d like to think that more than what makes them different, what carries weight here is what makes them the same. illegal detention, trumped up charges, a military blinded by getting some “big fish” and not getting enough of the red scare, being forced to face your accusers everyday, being removed from and having limited access to the outside world, being treated like some dangerous… Continue reading »

Wednesday ∗ 16 Nov 2011

on Manolo Sicat’s Matayataya

White is what greets you when you enter the gallery that’s been transformed into a playground by Manolo Sicat’s Matayataya. The first reaction is one of joy: the kind that play allows, no matter how old we get, especially because it is reminiscent of the kids that we were when the streets were safe to play in. But it sinks in soon enough: play here is everything and violent, because the streets have changed, because the streets are now testament to… Continue reading »

Friday ∗ 30 Sep 2011


in November 2010, i blogged about Lucio Tan getting away with the plan to lay off regular Philippine Airline workers in favor of outsourcing services, with the Department of Labor and Employment siding with him. now, almost a year since, PNoy proves himself an Hacienda Luisita heir, and actually says the PALEA workers who are on strike might be held liable for economic sabotage. the President is saying that these regular employees who have served PAL — and therefore the public… Continue reading »

Friday ∗ 01 Jul 2011

on class, the indie film divide, and what unity must mean

the breakdown and aftermath of the Rafael Santos debacle is interesting to me mostly for what’s still unsaid. 1. the fact of Santos’ class, and i use that word not just to point to his lack of social skills (for goodness why would he think a joke like that funny?) and bad manners (he was asked about actors he himself worked with for his film, yes?), but also his social class. that humor, if we’d like to call it that, is… Continue reading »

Tuesday ∗ 05 Apr 2011

pinoy rap lives!

with  Gloc-9.

Thursday ∗ 31 Mar 2011

release Ericson Acosta, now!

(please share, repost, tumblelog, tweet this statement of support) We, University of the Philippines alumni, academe, artists, writers, students, human rights advocates, friends and colleagues of Ericson Legaspi Acosta, call for his immediate and unconditional release from his current illegal detention. Ericson is a cultural worker and writer, and a former UP activist. During the ‘90s, he served as editor of the Philippine Collegian, UP’s official student publication. He is a former chair of the student cultural group Alay Sining,… Continue reading »

Tuesday ∗ 22 Mar 2011

on Mga Kuwentong EDSA

The first thing that strikes you when you enter the Looking For Juan (L4J) art space (Serendra, Taguig City) for the Mga Kuwentong EDSA exhibit is how familiar the images on both the small and large canvasses are, with faces and figures both real and abstract that speak of a time we might be too young to remember. But the icons / slogans / colors continue to have currency. Two artists are part of this exhibit, from different generations, both working with… Continue reading »

Thursday ∗ 17 Mar 2011

camera creative 1: notes on the 2011 Singapore Biennale

We know the value of the moving picture, and I shall not begin on the kind of cinema / film / industry that the access to this technology has meant in the more impoverished nations of this world from which independence has meant more creative films. Of course even that, at least in our shores, is beginning to be the exception instead of the rule. At the Singapore Biennale 2011, the moving picture, the camera itself, is focused on things… Continue reading »

Friday ∗ 10 Dec 2010

why free the morong 43?

Of course the answer must only be why the hell not? But, that’s getting ahead of this story, one that’s only tragic and nothing else, because while we insist that we hold freedom and democracy dear in this country, we will turn a blind eye to the oppression(s) of others, and will for the most part refuse all rationality because they are redder than most, they are activist of the kind that we don’t like or accept. But also it… Continue reading »

Thursday ∗ 07 Oct 2010

dear P-Noy, on Teachers Day 2010

which has just passed, this day that should be more momentous than most because you yourself spoke of your own teachers at this speech you delivered to commemorate it two days ago. there is no person who was not affected by a teacher in a good way, and that teacher need not be in the classroom. in the ideal world though, in a world where education is all important in a real sort of way, that teacher would be in… Continue reading »

Wednesday ∗ 06 Oct 2010

the revolution cannot be staged

I had high hopes for Banaag at Sikat, The Rock Opera, a promise of good music and singing, a contemporary retelling of Lope K. Santos’ original novel on the winds of change that would bring the country to revolt against the overwhelming conditions that capitalism and feudalism wrought on the nation. But as it began with fake guitar playing between friends Delfin (Al Gatmaitan) and Felipe (Roeder Camañag), attached to what then becomes a fake amplifier, and with dancing from a… Continue reading »

Sunday ∗ 09 May 2010


Satur Ocampo is the one senatoriable who has gotten flack for being guest candidate of NP, which is surprising given how this refuses to believe the truth that he and Liza Maza are running with the party, and not within it. Why is it so hard to understand that? The better question is would we give Satur and Liza the same problem had they run with LP? It’s obvious that people who use the NP reason against Satur and Liza… Continue reading »

Wednesday ∗ 21 Apr 2010

20 days to go!

“Ninoy’s Testament From A Prison Cell and other writings might enlighten Noynoy a little about the Left. if there were no poverty and oppression, there would be no Left; snubbing and demonizing the Left (instead of finding a way for Left and Right to work together for the good of the whole) would not have been Ninoy’s way, is no way to honor Ninoy’s legacy, in fact it dishonors Ninoy’s legacy.” And while Stuart Santiago seems to have decided, I have yet… Continue reading »

Monday ∗ 01 Mar 2010

kawayan takes a walk on the blindside

It seems too easy, really. On one July 4, Kawayan de Guia found himself in America, and felt removed from what was a major celebration in the land of milk and honey. On this day, he decides to take a 30-kilometer walk on non-descript Route 66, which may be part of his personal history of walking, yes, but to a spectator who needs no personal history, could really be about so many other things. Which is really what works for… Continue reading »

Saturday ∗ 16 Jan 2010

dreaming of a president 2010

my friend Andrea Teran wrote and posted this on her Facebook account. absolutely worth reading, and just so goddamn true it’s crazy that we have yet to hear/read speeches such as this. just missing a section on freedom of expression and extrajudicial killings, pero winner pa rin. and presidenteng papatol/gagawa/maniniwala sa speech na ‘to. at si Drey of course. :) ****** For This and No Other Or, A Draft Campaign Speech for Any of the Next Possible Philippine Presidents, Provided… Continue reading »

Friday ∗ 23 Oct 2009

the artist as activist

a version of this was published in the Philippine Daily Inquirer‘s Arts and Books section, October 26 2009. Kiri Dalena looks at me and acknowledges familiarity – here was no high and mighty, isolated and removed artist. After establishing the lines that bound us, she jokingly whispers a rhetorical question, “I am not young or exciting … why am I here?” There is nothing here in fact but self-deprecation, and a whole lot of humility. Kiri talks about her art, diverse… Continue reading »

Sunday ∗ 26 Jul 2009

palparan, benigno, bencard: alin alin ang naiba?

what i’ve hated aboutmuch that has been blogged re Melissa Roxas via Filipino Voices is that it dissolves the issue of the abduction and torture of activists into anti-left rhetoric. and this happens, not just because of the bloggers themselves, but the comments that are allowed to take over the discussions. so far, it is benigno who takes the cake. true, he insists we have become desensitized to extrajudicial disappearances and killings because it has become part and parcel of… Continue reading »

Tuesday ∗ 21 Jul 2009

big bad randy

it was a joy to find Victor Agustin writing about the issue of U.P. Prof. Sarah Raymundo’s tenure vis a vis Randy David’s announcement that he would run for congress if GMA does so in Pampanga. this was long in coming for mainstream, i.e., print media, and has yet to happen on the pages of the big-time dailies like the “”>Philippine Daily Inquirer. but i guess that’s no surprise? other than Randy being a long-time opinion columnist of the Inquirer, it… Continue reading »

Tuesday ∗ 10 Mar 2009

today: grieving for FrancisM

a version of this essay appears in the Philippine Daily Inquirer: Mourning for FrancisM I can imagine that this doesn’t apply to many Filipinos of a different social class and generation from mine. But for a particular sector who, in the 1990s, was enamored by American pop and rap, who were at an age in which they needed a sense of identity in the context of this country, there was Francis Magalona. And this is not to say that he… Continue reading »

Friday ∗ 30 Jan 2009


It’s a downright shame that on the year of the University of the Philippines’ Centennial, one that has been celebrated with much publicity and fanfare and cash, we hear many stories of how the university has turned on its own. Students have to deal with a higher tuition fee and the difficult process of qualifying for the STFAP (one full scholar? unacceptable!). Janitors like Mang Meliton are given P.92 centavos as retirement pay after 41 years of service. Where is… Continue reading »

Saturday ∗ 04 Oct 2008

on the “fiction” of the “fil-am”

now truly on pregnant pause, but elsewhere, more relevant discussions/blog entries are happening. this is sir edel garcellano on eugene gloria’s use of a real-life gelacio guillermo as subject of his poetry. and when taken to task about what it is he does create of guillermo, gloria invokes the “fictionality” of poetry. kumusta naman, e buhay na taong may malinaw na pulitika at kasaysayan ang pinaguusapan. another man’s fiction as a real man’s life? gamitan kung gamitan? Gloria must be running around with… Continue reading »

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