July 6, 2008
Education  for all
Congressman Manuel Agyao according to a news report is set to resurrect the short-lived scholarship program at the Mountain Province State Polytechnic College (MPSPC). Remember the one which catered only to students from Mountain Province? Yes, the same program which was cut short immediately after the elections, where people close to you-know-who were assigned to make a checklist of the municipalities and barangays where one candidate lost the vote. And that students from these barangays even if they are poor and from Mountain Province will be excluded as beneficiaries of the scholarship?
But before everything was done and everyone listed, fate intervened.
Now our caretaker wants to open it and this time it will be open to all students regardless of their stripes and strands. Education for all “ngarud”! Good for him and for us.
We are not privy to the reason of the congressman for his move, but we only hope that it is from a bolt of enlightenment and free of politics.
Our earlier view on the scholarship then was that it was being used as a political tool in the same manner that appointments to positions in the college were imbued with the same color. We also maintained that catering only to students of the province was outrageously selective, discriminatory and smacked of class legislation. It was the idea of class legislation that irked the former congressman’s lawyers but it was our criticism that earned us certain pressures and veiled threats.
It was the principle behind class legislation which we invoked to have been violated. There is no substantive difference between a native of the province and another native from elsewhere in the Philippines as far as benefits from the expenditures of public funds are concerned.
However, the former congressman’s camp argued that the money was from the district’s PDAF and therefore should be used in the district. So true, yet it does mean that the benefits of the expense should be limited to a certain geographical or ethnic entity. In the same manner that the district’s PDAF is defrayed to build roads and bridges, it does not mean that such infrastructures should be enjoyed by an identified few and at the exclusion of others.
Perhaps our caretaker is mindful of our arguments and in that we agree that he deserves the first four letters of the word – CARETAKER – and not the last five.

June 22, 2008
Political survival
            “Why our political leaders do not realize this may boggle the mind or that they may realize it but refuse to act accordingly for reasons only too obvious.”
          This was the second to the last paragraph of last issue’s Editorial that prompted some readers to ask what the reasons “only too obvious” are. Presumably, the reasons why our leaders apparently are biding or simply buying time over the legitimate issues concerning the proposed special election are not “too obvious.”
          Again, it is our position that we could have elected our representative in a special election already had our leaders been up to it in their hearts and minds from the very start. The last we heard is that the Resolution by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan requesting Congress to pass an enabling law for the conduct of a special election, is still up for signature by majority of the members and that the Governor has referred the same to the Provincial Attorney for his legal opinion. All told, by the time the resolution reaches Congress, there is no more time to talk about already. In fact, we have always argued that we have already passed the deadline - too many “alreadies.”
           To make the “too obvious” obvious makes one bear in mind that the first rule in politics is survival, and all necessary steps to insure it must be pursued.
Now, obviously the camp of the late congressman would have nothing to do with the conduct of a special election as it is prejudicial to its health. A new congressman, no matter what political color, would necessarily disrupt what has already been in place. Deals and concessions will have to be undone or re-negotiated, an aggravation which the former political king pin’s camp cannot afford.
           And obviously, no politician worth his salt, is also keen in holding an election at this time. Not the Governor, former governors, and other wannabe’s who are all too aware that the investment needed may be to high to be recouped given the remaining time the office will be served.
           Accordingly, one needs about P85 million to win the congressional seat based on estimates done from the last regular election. Make your computation from that figure and even a caffeinated moron will realize that the financial outlay is not assured to come back in what – a little over a year in office.
           Moreover, the prospect of not winning a re-election in year 2010 after serving as a replacement congressman is not lost to these politicians and their respective strategists. The idea so abhorrent is that the replacement congressman will participate in the preparation of the 2010 national budget and consequently had in place his pet projects and insertions, but only to lose in his re-election bid. This is a classic case of a politician’s worst nightmare – someone else feasting on one’s labor!
           Not yet too obvious?
          Simply, no leader is insane enough to push for something he has killed in the very beginning!  
June 15, 2008
Editorial: Illegal occupant

June 8, 2008
Editorial: Lack of funds or lack of will?
June 1, 2008
Editorial: Idiots
May 25, 2008
Editorial: Chico River Development Authority
May 18, 2008
Editorial: From the eyes of a child
May 11, 2008
Editorial: You are not answering the question!
May 4, 2008
Editorial: Commentext policy
April 27, 2008
Editorial: Caretaker or undertaker?
April 20, 2008
Editorial: Bontoc City
April 13, 2008
Editorial: After Lang-ay


Published by DAMOCO, with editorial
address at Sub-ang, Bontoc, Mt.
Province and circulated in all the
provinces of the Cordillera.
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