Delamar’s Last Day on RX

From the Tube

Chico and Delamar, a radio institution for over 20 years, is no more after the latter’s decision to depart ‘The Morning Rush’ on Monster RX 93.1. (Photo credit: The Morning Rush Official Facebook)

One of Philippine radio’s icons is taking a leave for good.

Monster RX 93.1 DJ Delamar Arias announced last week that she will leave ‘The Morning Rush’, the show she had been co-hosting with Chico Garcia since 1996. Her departure will leave a big hole on the long-running show, which earned numerous awards and even released three critically acclaimed books based on ‘The Morning Rush’ Top 10 segment.

Delamar’s decision to leave ‘The Morning Rush’ surprised and saddened many of its loyal listeners. After all, her partnership and chemistry with Chico and later with Gino Quillamor led to the immense popularity of the show, and in the process, led to the creation of other rival morning shows, such as…

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Changing of the Guard on Philippine FM Radio

From the Tube

Times are changing in the field of FM radio in the Philippines.

The biggest news coming off the industry was the departure of Delamar Arias from Monster RX 93.1 last July 29. Her departure marked the end of an era for ‘The Morning Rush’, which has long been considered an institution in Philippine FM radio.

When the show took the airwaves on August 1, ‘Rushers’ are still trying to figure out a way to make the show interesting without Delamar. But it was not easy, considering that the chemistry between her and Chico Garcia (plus Gino Quillamor) was undeniable.

RX even tried to add Bea Fabregas to the show in hopes of replacing Delamar in the near future. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out, and to this day, they are still scrambling to fill Delamar’s chair.

But Delamar is not the only FM radio icon to bid farewell. Two other long-time DJs also called it a…

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Monster RX 93.1 In a Crisis

From the Tube

The once tight-knit family on Monster RX 93.1 is crumbling.

Still reeling from the departure of Delamar Arias last July 29, RX endured another incident a few weeks later. On August 14, RX DJ Karen Bordador was arrested along with boyfriend Emilio Lim due to possession of illegal drugs.

At the time of her arrest, Karen was assigned to the 2:00 to 6:00 a.m. slot. Prior to that, she was partnered with Rico Robles during the afternoon.

Friends and family of Karen vehemently denied that she was a drug user. Even her ex-boyfriend Chris Tan agreed to their sentiments.

In response to the situation, the management of RX issued the following statement:

As a result of Karen’s arrest, RX was forced to make adjustments in their schedule. Initially, Hazel Aguilon, Cara Eriguel and Tom Alvarez were given longer shifts during weeknights, but recently, student DJs from the Radio1 program were assigned to…

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Yes FM Rebrands, Targets Millennials

From the Tube

The similarities between MBC sister stations 90.7 Love Radio and 101.1 Yes FM have been well-documented.

Ever since the Manila Broadcasting Company converted Yes FM into a Hot AC (‘masa’) station in 1998, the competition between Yes and MBC’s older flagship station Love Radio became intense and at times cordial. Both stations were in the top two in the ratings, and they even boasted that so-called fact in various stingers.

Unfortunately, the similarity in format proved to be a hindrance for Yes FM. By playing virtually the same type of music and catering to the same audience as Love Radio, Yes was always in the shadow of its older counterpart, and thus, they were treated like a ‘puppet’ to MBC.

It was clear to MBC that Yes needed a facelift. So in July of this year, they decided to give Yes a new sound, rebranding the station as 101.1 Yes the Best.

While semblances…

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News5 a Non-Factor in Live House, Senate Hearings Last Week

Well, that’s weird.

From the Tube

Star witness Edgar Matobato was the center of attention in last Thursday's Senate hearings on extrajudicial killings. Live coverage on TV and radio was provided by a majority of outlets, save for News5. (Photo credit: The Philippine Star) Star witness Edgar Matobato was the center of attention in last Thursday’s Senate hearings on extrajudicial killings. Live coverage on TV and radio was provided by a majority of outlets, save for News5. (Photo credit: The Philippine Star)

It was a busy three days for the Philippines’ top news outfits.

On September 20 and 21, the House of Representative conducted a nine-to-ten hour hearing regarding the drug trade inside the New Bilibid Prisons. Then on September 22, the Senate conducted two hearings, one involving the use of emergency powers to combat traffic, and the other the continuation of the hearings on extrajudicial killings.

In between, President Rodrigo Duterte appeared on live television to address his own concerns regarding the presence of American troops in Mindanao, and the United Nations’ continued intervention in his war against drugs. The President gave his speech in front of the country’s hard-working soldiers in Mindanao.

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THOUGHTS ON QUALITY EDUCATION IN THE PHILIPPINES AND THE UN STANDARD DEVELOPMENT GOAL

Author’s note: This is not politics as usual. But there are some sensitive topics that are addressed because of the lack of Quality Education. This also serves as my reflection on my topic.

Quality Education in the Philippines has a long way to go, because of the 16 million people who voted our current president, and the lies made up by Mocha Uson (yes, that Mocha Uson of Mocha Girls fame and a well-known supporter of Duterte) and Even Demata (a.k.a. Jerry Ocampo). It also has a long way to go, because of them Marcos Loyalists, and also, of the lack of classrooms, low salary for teachers, and other factors.

I would agree, because this is quite correct. Why? Is it because we have a president who is hates the United States and the West,  a Communist, kisses the ass of China and Russia, and says bad words to POTUS, the Pope and others,  is it because the Marcos Loyalists are out brainwashing students and actively campaigning for Bongbong Marcos during the elections, or is it the lack of quality education?

In my opinion, it is ALL OF THE ABOVE. Why? Because teachers wouldn’t teach students sensitive topics like Martial Law, which is my example.  Teachers born in the 1980’s would say to students, “Noong panahon ni Marcos, maginhawa ang buhay…(During the time of Marcos, life was good…)”,  “Noong panahon ni Marcos, tahimik,” (During the time of Marcos, it was quiet), “Noong panahon ni Marcos, maganda ang ekonomiya” (During the time of Marcos, we had a good economy) and other brainwashing you might encounter.

It’s all lies. Why? Does the teacher know about the people tortured, killed or missing during that time? I guess not, because he/she grew up when Apo Lakay  was in his twilight years, then EDSA I happened.

If this country wants to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goal of Quality Education, then teachers should teach the true story of Martial Law to students, let them listen to the stories of Martial Law victims like Lili Hilao, Lorena Barios, Archie Trajano, Evelio Javier, and Primitivo and Boyet Mijares, and let students read books like “The Conjugal Dictatorship”, “Dekada ’70” to name a few. I recall reading an article in the Facebook group Never Again:No to Dictators and Martial Law that in Germany, their Department of Education sets field trips to the Nazi concentration camps in Dachau, Bergen-Belsen and other camps.

If the Philippines wants to achieve the Quality Education stated in the UN SDG, then stop denying that Martial Law never happened! Stop giving a hero’es burial to Mr. Marcos! Apologize to the people and to the victims of Martial Law! That way, the brainwashing can stop, and students like me can achieve a quality education.

 

P.S. This is just my two cents on the matter of quality education, mixed with a Martial Law flavor.

 

SUMMARY OF THE UN SDG ON QUALITY EDUCATION

Author’s Note: This is not politics as usual. This is a summary of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal on Quality Education.

What is Quality Education? Some interpretations define this as a right of every child being born right now, and it is guaranteed in International Law. 

Quality education is a dynamic concept. It evolves with time and is subject to social, economic and environmental conditions. However, international human rights law provides a general legal framework that guarantees quality education.

Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – and the main treaties that guarantee the right to education – have defined the aims of education which impact on the content of education, teaching and learning processes and materials, the learning environment and learning outcomes. Not only that: According to the same article, “Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms”

 

But this is a problem, in Sub-Saharan Africa. In the Philippines? I guess the quality is improving, thanks to the K-12 and the transfer of some universities of their opening of school to August to accommodate foreign students. Even though some parents and students hate it, and their argument is “Why add two more years to the education system? Surely it’s a waste of time and money”, “dapat kolehiyo na kami kung hindi dahil sa K-12 na yan”.  But, it’s the harsh truth, because before this program was implemented by DepEd, our country and Burma was the last two countries in the ASEAN to have a K-10 program. But now, let’s see where this goes. And it’s a long ride, because there are groups in opposition to them, including the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan, because they cannot brainwash students into believing their lies about Martial Law (for more of this brainwashing technique, see my reflection on this topic.)

True Love Waits or Love, now na?

A gigantic tarpaulin mounted at the campus entrance reminds students of the school policy on romance between students. (photo courtesy of ABS-CBNnews.com)

 

There is a school in Cagayan De Oro City that imposes a “true love waits” policy on its students to prevent teenage pregnancy. The said school forbids its students from having a romantic relationship with the opposite sex as long as they are enrolled in the said school.

A gigantic tarpaulin mounted at the campus entrance reminds students of the school’s policy. The same prohibition is also printed on teachers’ uniforms. School president Capt. Tito Dichosa said his only wish is for his students to finish college. He added that he gets frustrated whenever a student gets pregnant and stops studying. Last school year, six students were expelled from the school for violating the prohibition.

 

As a student, I strongly condemn this rule. Why? If you place this rule on High School and College, hahanap at hahanap sila ng paraan para magkaroon ng romance, mas lalo na kung pupunta lang sa computer shop para gumawa ng assignment ang paalam sa magulang, yun pala, sa Hotel Sogo o motel ang puntahan para mag-MOMOL. Not only that, this policy never works, because you cannot stop us, you damn pricks. And if this was spread nationwide, no one will follow. Why? Because we’re gonna go to Hotel Sogo, motels and inns to make MOMOL at walang makakapigil sa amin.

Delicadeza or Moving On? The Ferdinand Marcos burial issue, explained

I refrain from going to this issue, knowing that Rodrigoons and Marcos Loyalists are going to put me on their shoot-to-kill list, knowing that I hate their idol and very against their devious plan of burying the former dictator  at the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani. So here’s my honest-to goodness opinion on this issue.

In my opinion, the former dictator SHOULD NOT BE BURIED in the LNMB. Why? Not only because he declared Martial Law, but because of his fraudulent military record. According to the “authorized” biographies of Mr. Marcos, he spent the first days of 1942 by ambushing a company of Japanese cyclists, killing 40 and turning back the rest.  Another fallacy is that he defended Bessang Pass singlehanded and created his own guerilla group called “Ang Maharlikha”.  And get this: There are evidences that prove that 11 of his 33 medals are earned during his war years were just merely decorations when he was just running for the Senate. And there is no record in the U.S. Army about his guerilla group, so it means he’s NO HERO!

If I were to be asked, I would use delicadeza because burying Marcos would be like committing suicide! Why? It’s like saying that Voldemort is a hero. Not only that, we would dishonor those who died during that era! My goodness! In fact those who died during Martial Law deserve to be buried there than him!

 

Anyare? Economic decline since Marcos

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By Sonny Africa

IBON Features | #BeyondElections2016 | The Marcos dictatorship started the Philippines on a path of economic decline that remains until today. This has already had the worst consequences for tens of millions of Filipinos across two generations. Unless corrected, it will burden generations to come.

The Philippine economy’s decline since the 1980s is commonly attributed to the Marcos regime’s corruption and cronyism. For instance the bloating of the country’s foreign debt is often used to dramatically illustrate this: Marcos took out loans to enrich himself and his cronies. These loans became unpayable because they were pocketed or used by inefficient enterprises. The resulting financial burden drove the protected crony-dominated economy into the ground.

This narrative highlights the evils of dictatorship and abuse of power. But it falters in explaining why, over three decades after the end of the Marcos regime, the economy still remains so backward in the things that matter – job creation, poverty reduction, agricultural and industrial development, and policy sovereignty.

Bureaucrat capitalism under Marcos was undoubtedly world class and certainly added to the country’s economic problems. But the real cause of economic failure lies somewhere else – in the neoliberal “free market” policies forced on the Filipino people using the vast powers of the dictatorship.

Economic collapse

The Philippine economy was by no means strong, self-reliant or independent at the start of the Marcos regime in 1965. Unlike so many countries in Asia, Latin America and Africa whose post-World War Two post-colonial governments were bold enough to implement nationalist and even Socialist policies, post-1946 Philippines remained a political and economic neocolony of United States (US) imperialism.

Like the rest of the world in the 1950s and 1960s, the Philippines had at least some degree of protectionist policies. But unlike most other countries, the Philippines let foreigners benefit from these same protections. Specifically, when the Philippines was granted “independence” in 1946 the US colonizers made sure that treaties were in place giving American capitalists the same economic rights (i.e. parity) as Filipinos until the early 1970s.

The rule of Nacionalista Party’s Ferdinand E. Marcos which began in 1965 was strong on nationalist and patriotic rhetoric. Yet Pres. Marcos was by no means a nationalist if ‘nation’ is understood as the majority of Filipinos and ‘nationalism’ as upholding their interests and asserting Filipino sovereignty over foreign powers.

The trajectory of the economy under Marcos was straightforward. The long period 1966-1980 saw a steady increase in gross domestic product (GDP) per capita which merely continued a trend since 1948. Any claims of the Marcos time being “golden years” probably refers to this period which also included the debt-driven infrastructure spree starting around 1975.

However, GDP per capita is an aggregate measure that assumes economic gains are equally distributed across the population. It muddles the gross inequity in the economy. In any case, GDP per capita levelled off in 1981-1983 and its dramatic collapse in 1984 ushered in 15 years of volatility. There were recessions and stagnation in 1983-1985, 1991-1993, and 1998-1999. GDP per capita only started to increase steadily again after 2000.

The decade 1975-1986 was actually a time of intense social crisis and economic difficulty for most Filipinos. The unemployment rate was falling in the early years of the Marcos regime – from 7.1% in 1966 to 3.9% in 1975. But this reversed in the mid-1970s to rapidly rise back to 7.9% in 1980. The prices of goods and services also soared with the 6.8% inflation rate in 1975 almost doubling to 12.1% in 1980.

The situation was worst in the 1981-1985 period: unemployment averaged nearly 11% including a high of 12.6% in 1985; inflation averaged nearly 20% including, also in 1985, a high of nearly 30 percent. By 1985, anywhere from two-thirds to three-fourths of some 54 million Filipinos were poor; at least 27 million Filipinos or up to half (49%) of the population were in extreme poverty (i.e. those deemed “poor” according to the low official poverty line). These conditions fuelled the storm of protest and opposition to the dictatorship and precipitated its overthrow through a people’s uprising in February 1986.

Neoliberal disaster

Blaming all these on the Marcos regime’s corruption and cronyism is convenient especially with the Marcos family and their cronies visibly behaving so villainously. Yet there were other Asian countries in the 1970s and 1980s that also suffered corruption and cronyism – some even dictatorial rule – but that did not experience as severe crisis. Korea and China come to mind and, closer to home, of course Indonesia, Thailand and Malaysia.

The biggest difference is that the Philippines under Marcos started implementing neoliberal “free market” policies. More than anything else this is what prevented the Philippines from becoming any sort of East Asian success story.

Most anti-nationalist president. The “nationalist” Marcos was the most anti-nationalist president the country had ever seen. Martial Law was declared not just for personal political survival but to use the coercive powers of the state to open up and restructure the Philippine economy according to the needs of foreign monopoly capital, especially the US whose post-colonial treaties were coming to an end. No less was needed to confront certain resistance from the resurgent nationalist and armed revolutionary movements – resulting in monumental human rights violations.

Leftist activists gave justified attention to US-directed International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank (WB) intervention in Philippine economic policymaking and their collusion with the Marcos regime. Two-thirds or 16 of the 24 IMF programs the country has ever had were during the Marcos regime, six of which were during his first term before declaring Martial Law in 1972. It also accounted for nearly a hundred World Bank projects, with loans worth some US$5.2 billion, out of 250 such projects to date.

In 1980, the Marcos regime actually made the Philippines the first country in Asia and the second country in the world, after Turkey, to be at the receiving end of a World Bank structural adjustment loan (SAL). The conditionalities of the US$200 million loan included among others tariff cuts, removal of import licenses and quantitative restrictions, lowering protections, and export-promotion – all in line with the market-oriented restructuring of the economy. This first SAL and another US$302 million one in 1984 were the historic spearheads of subsequent decades of trade and investment liberalization in the country.

Cheap labor export, foreign plunder of PH resources. Pres. Marcos’ neoliberal measures are familiar today but were novel for their time. He institutionalized cheap labor export, starting with various measures to get Filipino seamen employed and workers hired in the Middle East. The Marcos regime devised the service contract scheme that creatively bypassed Constitutional restrictions on foreign exploitation of Filipino petroleum and gas resources, resulting in the virtually complete turnover of Malampaya resources to foreign oil and gas giants.

The regime worked hard to give foreign capital profitable opportunities. It enacted laws on investment and export incentives for foreign investors and created the country’s first special economic zones, then called export processing zones. Martial law and trade union repression also let the regime cut real wages virtually in half between 1970 and 1975 where they remained for over a decade until after 1986.

The sum of all these neoliberal measures interacted with crony corruption and self-centered monopolization to cause the economy to weaken in the 1970s and then, upon the debt crisis in the early 1980s, to completely collapse. The financial stranglehold of foreign monopoly capital on the Philippine economy was by that time complete where all public and private flows became contingent on the IMF’s so-called seal of “good housekeeping”.

Fiscal austerity. The IMF enforced fiscal austerity so that foreign debt would continue to be paid, choked liquidity to stem capital outflows, and devalued the currency which only drove prices ever higher. The debt problem was certainly severe and increased fifty-fold from US$599 million in 1965 when Pres. Marcos entered Malacañang as president to US$28.3 billion when he left it as a deposed dictator. But there are no debtors without creditors and banks and governments lent freely to what it knew was a dictatorial regime.

The economy in the final years of the Marcos regime was in neoliberal-induced ruin. Unemployment and poverty were at historic highs. The rural economy remained poor and backward from the lack of real agrarian reform and support for the peasantry. The neoliberal structural adjustment and stabilization measures however caused firms to close and greatly accelerated Philippine deindustrialization. The manufacturing sector remained steady at an average of more or less 28% of GDP in the decade 1971-1980, albeit with a growing share of foreign rather than domestic firms, but then rapidly fell to less than 25% in 1986.

Never again

In hindsight the arc of neoliberal globalization of the Philippine economy is clear. The Martial Law regime started the market-oriented restructuring of the Philippine economy and its debilitating effects were immediately felt. After Marcos, cronyism was craftily used to justify even greater liberalization, privatization and deregulation as early as the Corazon Aquino administration but especially during the Ramos administration in the 1990s. This continued through the Estrada, Arroyo and the current outgoing Aquino administration to explain the stubborn poverty and chronic backwardness of domestic production.

What then to make of the Marcos era? The Marcos regime implemented the neoliberal economic policies demanded by the US-dominated IMF and WB in exchange for a share in the foreign loans and comprador business opportunities. Marcos and his cronies were allowed to directly control and profit from large portions of the national economy – sugar, coconut, bananas, tobacco, logging, mining, telecommunications, banking, construction, vehicle assembly, energy, shipping, pharmaceuticals, medical supplies, gambling, and others.

There was no contradiction between neoliberalism and crony capitalism. Even with the oligarchs, foreign monopoly capital still benefited from the cheap labor, raw materials, and domestic market of the Philippines. At the same time the country remained a bulwark of US imperialist aggression in the region including from hosting the largest American overseas military bases at the time.

This experience under the Marcos dictatorship is relevant as the country elects its leaders on May 9. The Marcos years were an unmitigated tragedy and having its unrepentant vestiges in the political scene is not “moving on” but an affirmation of how much still needs to be done to overturn elite and undemocratic rule in the country. But the grip of neoliberalism on the country which started under Marcos also needs to be underscored as its real economic legacy for the Filipino people.

 

Editor’s Note: This has been a repost for the Millenials to know about the horrors of Martial Law.