Pumped Up Kicks – Miracle of Modern Science (Orchestral Cover)

http://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F26909489&auto_play=false&show_artwork=true&color=ff7700

“All the other kids with the pumped up kicks You’d better run, better run, outrun my gun All the other kids with the pumped up kicks You’d better run, better run, faster than my bullet..”

The lyrics is familiar, right? This song by Foster the People is inarguably one of the best songs of 2011. You hear it almost everywhere and I bet you have this in your phones, iPods, and music players. I first heard it on 99.5 RT and I immediately fell in love with it. (I just don’t know if the masa stations in Manila play this.)

Earlier this morning, I was browsing my dashboard when I saw a post from the Daily What featuring a Kickass Cover of the Day. The group described themselves as Bon Joviver – a fusion of Bon Iver and Bon Jovi – and they gave the Bon Jovi classicYou Give Love a Bad Name a Bon Iver-esque rendition. And I liked it.

I searched for the band on the web and found their other kickass covers. And this song by Foster The People left me repeatedly playing the song the whole morning. The strings and the rockestra-ish arrangement must have done the trick.

I have been posting serious stuff over the past days so here’s something to make my blog, and your dashboards, less serious, hyped, feel-good, and fun.

I hate to make a comparison by in my opinion, this cover is better than the original.

Enjoy the music fellas! Good morning from this side of the globe!

Elsewhere:

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What’s wrong with this photo?

Take a closer look at the photo above. You will see a man wearing a blue polo browsing (and allegedly buying) over a stash of pirated DVDs.

So what’s wrong? Almost everyone of us are guilty of this act. I am sure that most of us have visited our suking manong dibidi to look for and buy copies of our favorite TV Shows, movies, concerts, and albums (before the advent of torrents, I presume). Though we all know piracy is the cause of the loss of profit of the music and movie industry, most of us still patronize this cheaper and alternative way of entertainment.

Going back to the photo, take a look again. Do you recognize that man? Just a few months ago, he was at the headlines of broadsheets and news programs after his Mistubishi Montero, then being used by two of his security aides, figured in an accident on Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City—and yielded a Czech-made CZ-858 Tactical semiautomatic assault rifle in the ensuing police investigation(source).

The man above is Rolando Llamas, Presidential Adviser on Political Affairs. Yes my dear reader, he is a member of President Noynoy Aquino’s Cabinet. The report says that he bought Php 2,000 worth of Pirated DVDs at Circle C Mall in Congressional Avenue, Quezon City, on Monday night.

A government official, who is suppose to lead the people on the campaign against piracy (don’t give me an excuse that piracy is not your Department’s work), is seen buying pirated stuff. Classic.

I am not saying that Mister Llamas should be condemned for buying pirated DVDs (the law, unfortunately, has no provision to penalize the buyer). And we still have to listen at Mister Llamas’ side whether he actually purchased pirated DVDs or not. But I believe in leadership by example, he should have avoided that place – or doing that act – in the first place.

What would Noynoy Aquino do? Will he reprimand, or sack, his political adviser? But Roland Llamas is also one of the shooting buddies of the President.

So much for the daang matuwid.

Read more here: Aquino’s Man no Poster Boy for Anti-Piracy Drive

25 Years Later

Yesterday, January 22, 2012, marked the 25th year of the gruesome Mendiola Massacre, an incident that happened in Mendiola on January 22, 1987 in which Government security forces violently dispersed a farmers’ protest march to Malacañan Palace.

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A wounded protester is helped by a peasant activist after the shooting broke out. Ramon Acasio

Pardon me for this late post. Aside from being busy yesterday because of my class, the major broadsheets yesterday did not put the commemoration of the massacre in their front page. Instead, I saw items about the Impeacment Trial, the Roman-Shalai wedding, Chinese New Year, and more impeachment brouhahas.

Or maybe because they are biased for President Noynoy Aquino and they do not want to talk about it. It would be remembered that the incumbent President’s mother, Cory Aquino, was the President during that time. (Well, this is just me with my crazy imagination. I will just leave it there.) Moving on..

Aside from the Maguindanao Massacre, I consider the Mendiola Massacre as an event that should not be forgotten or slip past our consciousness. If we saw slain journalists in Maguindanao, we have helpless peasants and farmers in Mendiola.

Peasants and farmers have a special place in my heart,. I lived with some of them during my formation years in College. And since the advent of my awakening, I have always supported the cause of the poor and the oppressed for justice, freedom, and ownership. You may not see me with a banner or a raised fist in the streets but I believe that there are other ways to support their cause other than protests and rallies.

Landless farmers. Feudalism has long been gone in Europe but it is still practiced in some parts of our country up to this day. The Agrarian Reform programs of the Government appears to be a failure. The problems of the landless farmers still haunt our country and I don’t see a beacon of hope that will signal its end. (Well, the Hacienda Luisita has been granted to the farmers – in a decision and not in reality – but there are still other lands that are yet to be distributed. Hopefully.)

Twenty-five years ago, a massacre happened near Malacañang, a bloody result of the fight of the farmers for land ownership and social justice. And twenty-five years later, justice is still nowhere in sight.

Will it happen on the term of the son of the President during the massacre? Is justice for the landless farmers included in the promised daang matuwid? I don’t know. I think they are still busy hunting the previous administration and her allies.

I want to see a new day where there will be no more landless farmers, no more greedy landowners, and no more social injustice brought by land ownership disputes.

And no more state-sponsored killing spree for these individuals.

Yesterday was the 25th anniversary of the Mendiola Massacre. Never forget. Never again.

Elsewhere:

Do You Still Give a Damn?

This day marks the 26th month of the infamous Ampatuan Massacre, a horrible event in our history where 58 people were killed, 34 of whom were journalists or working for the broadcast industry. But do you still care?

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A few days ago, I wrote about the eleventh anniversary of EDSA Dos and why do people seem not to give a damn to throw a celebration. I assumed that people tend to forget it because it was a considered a nightmare, a dark part of of our history that should be forgotten and never be repeated again. It has transformed into a collective repressed memory for the Filipino people.

Repressed memory is a hypothetical concept used to describe a significant memory, usually traumatic ones, that has become unavailable for recall. It is also called motivated forgetting wherein the subject blocks painful or traumatic events in one’s life.

This massacre is undoubtedly one of the most horrible events in our history and democracy. Fifty-eight people were killed in an election-related violence, thirty-four of whom were people working for the broadcast industry in a country where there is supposed to be a freedom of the press.

This is an event so painful and traumatic that it could become a collective repressed memory for the family’s victims and Filipinos. But should it be?

No!

Unlike EDSA Dos where nobody seems to give a damn to throw a celebration and/or memorial every year (for obvious reasons, I believe), this one should be different.

Most of us may have forgotten this horrible event in our history. This issue may have been overshadowed by the recent issues in our country.

But by letting this event just pass us by our consciousness, it will appear that we are condoning the perpetrators of this crime. Or depriving justice to the victims and their families. Or killing the fifty-eight victims repeatedly. Or allowing the culture of impunity in our country.

Impunity. Kawalang pakundangan. It’s like saying “Go ahead, kill everyone who are against your plans! Shoot the story tellers! We allow murder in our country! No one is punished by the way.”

We don’t want it that way, right? So what can we do as an ordinary citizen?

Never forget. Let us always put the Ampatuan massacre into consciousness. One way of doing it is to post something about it every 23rd of the month for everyone to see (on Facebook, Twitter, and in your blogs). This will help those who have forgotten to remember.

Be an educated and wise voter. The Ampatuan massacre is an election-related violence which involves (an alleged) private army. Choose your leaders wisely. Do not be swayed by their goods during the campaign season.

Be vigilant. Stay on guard, be watchful. Let us be our brother’s keeper. And let us keep an eye on the proceedings of the trial (even if it takes 55,000 years, according to Atty. Harry Roque).

Let us offer a minute of silence to remember the victims of the massacre. And ask God – or the Cosmos or some Force, depending on your belief – that this would never happen again.

Justice for the Victims of the Ampatuan Massacre. Never Forget. Never again.

Elsewhere:

On the Maguindanao massacre, impunity and the role of media in a supposed democracy (by ellobofilipino) – Last November, during the second anniversary of the massacre, I asked what if there were no members of the media involved in the massacre, would the impact be the same? This is Sir Kim’s take on the issue.
End Impunity. Remember Ampatuan. – TV-5/Interaksyon.com’s comprehensive page about the Ampatuan Massacre. (Two thumbs up for continuously updating this page.)

Happy 23rd Anniversary Nanay and Tatay!

Happy 22nd Anniversary Nanay and Tatay!<br /><br /> Today marks the 22nd wedding anniversary of my parents. 22 years of being a husband and wife, 22 years of being good parents, 22 years of ups and downs, 22 years of blessings and misfortunes, and 22 years of being together.<br /><br /> You have gone a long way in your marriage. You have been a good example to us, your sons and daughter. You have thought us to be God-fearing individuals and to be just to our neighbor. You are our idols.<br /><br /> In three years, you will be celebrating your Silver Anniversary. But let’s aim for fifty years just like Lolo and Lola. And when that day comes, I want both of you to sing Adam Sandler’s Grow Old With You.<br /><br /> I love you Nanay and Tatay from the bottom of my heart and from the wholeness of my substantial, corporeal, living, and rational soul. Nuks!<br /><br /> Photo taken at Kamay ni Hesus Healing Center, Lucban Quezon. I asked them to pose on ‘The Temptation’ statue of Adam and Eve for art’s sake - and for them to be reminded that whatever temptations may come along the way, they should still be together as one.

 

Today marks the 23rd wedding anniversary of my parents. 23 years of being a husband and wife, 23 years of being good parents, 23 years of ups and downs, 23 years of blessings and misfortunes, and 23 years of being together.

You have gone a long way in your marriage. You have been a good example to us, your sons and daughter. You have thought us to be God-fearing individuals and to be just to our neighbor. You are our idols.

In three years, you will be celebrating your Silver Anniversary. But let’s aim for fifty years just like Lolo and Lola. And when that day comes, I want both of you to sing Adam Sandler’s Grow Old With You.

I love you Nanay and Tatay from the bottom of my heart and from the wholeness of my substantial, corporeal, living, and rational soul. Nuks!

Photo taken at Kamay ni Hesus Healing Center, Lucban Quezon. I asked them to pose on ‘The Temptation’ statue of Adam and Eve for art’s sake – and for them to be reminded that whatever temptations may come along the way, they should still be together as one.

EDSA Dos: A Historical Repression

Today is the eleventh anniversary of the conspiracy that ousted Former President Joseph Estrada from Malacañan Palace and put Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in the helm of power in January 2001. We commonly know it by the name of EDSA Dos. And no one seems to give a damn to throw a celebration.

 

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I have been observing the internet (Twitter, Facebook, and news websites) the whole day and no one posted a stuff about the day that changed our Political history. I searched the word “EDSA” on Twitter earlier and I only saw less than 10 tweets (mine included) about EDSA dos (The results are mostly MMDA’s traffic update on EDSA.).

How come nobody commemorated the events that happened eleven years ago at EDSA Shrine? Maybe because we are too busy talking about Chief Justice Renato Corona’s impeachment trial. Maybe because some of us chose to watch the filming of Bourne Legacy in Manila. Or too excited for Katy Perry’s concert. Or too busy watching the season premiere of American Idol and the finale of My Binondo Girl.

Or is it because EDSA Dos is considered a nightmare, a dark part of our history that should be forgotten and should never be repeated again? Maybe yes.

Where were you eleven years ago?

I was eleven years old then, a graduating student in Elementary. The last days of the impeachment trial and the mass protest in EDSA Shrine coincided with our third quarterly exams. Prior to that, whenever I go home early from school, I see to it that I watch the impeachment trial. I can still remember how my classmates and I would horse around, imitating the Chief Justice, the Prosecution, and the Defense Panel. The words Objection your honor, overruled, and sustained became a part of our daily conversation.

I remember watching the controversial voting whether to open the second envelope or not with my father. I can still recall how Senators Pimentel and Drilon hugged each other and in tears, how Senator Legarda wept, how Chief Justice Davide removed his judicial robe, how the Prosecution panel resigned and walked out in disgust, and how the aunt of our current President, Senator Tessie Aquino-Oreta danced a la dougie in jubilation. Minutes after the controversial decision, the streets are filled with protesters, the car owners are blowing their horns, and the members of the crowd in EDSA Shrine, increased in number.

The next day, I remember my father putting up a printout of JOE’S COHORTS in the windshield of our car as a sign of protest. It is a mnemonic of the Senators who opposed the opening of the second envelope – Jaworski, Oreta, Enrile, Santiago, Coseteng, Osemeña, Honasan, Ople, Revilla, Tatad.

Text messaging is a new technology then (There were no unlimited text and calls promos though) and it also helped to spread the message to gather in EDSA Shrine and force the President to step down from office. As expected, ERAP jokes became rampant to taunt President Estrada. The Senators who opposed the opening of the second envelope were also not spared from taunts and heckling. Some of the famous lines then which I can still remember are Tadtarin si Tatad!, Oreta Dancing Queen!, and  Ninoy Aquino’s photo with the lines ‘My sister is not worth dying for’.

The protest to became festive with artists and bands performing at the stage and with the presence of, uhm, some artistas. (The most memorable personality then was President Estrada’s friend, Nora Aunor, who joined the crown on calling him to resign. But if there is one song which I can associate with the protest, it would be Sam the Sham and the Paraoh’s ‘Wooly Bully’ which the protesters sang as ‘Huling-huli! Si Erap! Huling-huli!

Though I was not present with the protesters during that time, for obvious reasons, I made myself updated by constantly tuning in to news programs on television. And some of the memories were still vivid because when I was in high School, my tambayan is our library and I have repeatedly read this coffee table book:

 

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The President was ousted eleven years ago today and his Vice President succeeded him – with the help of the high-ranking military officials, political and business elites, and the Catholic Church led by Jaime Cardinal Sin. Conspiracy, as they say, to oust the President extra-constitutionally, a de facto coup that led to the  proclamation of Gloria Arroyo.

In the later months and years, Erap would be arrested, EDSA tres would happen, Erap would come out saying he was forced to sign a resignation paper during the height of EDSA Dos, and Gloria Arroyo would become the infamous President that we know today.

Is EDSA Dos a historical success? No. Did it play an important part in history? Maybe, but what we learned more are lessons for the future of our country.

A contemporary Filipino writer who goes by the pen name Bob Ong, wrote something about EDSA Dos in his book Stainless Longganisa. He compared the protest in EDSA to drinking antibiotics to cure a disease.

He wrote that it is wrong to immediately go to the street to call for the resignation of a leader – or to immediately drink antibiotic without first consulting the doctor. Time will come that the bacteria would become immune to antibiotics and it would be more difficult to cure the disease. Just like the cancer of our society, the more we use the usual way of cure, that is, to march in the streets and call for change, time might come that the usual way will no longer work for us. And worse, during the time when we really need change.

Many of the prominent personas involved during the EDSA Dos have already expressed their regret on being a part of that event. And maybe, most of the participants in EDSA and in key cities of the country who helped, in a way, put Gloria Arroyo into power in 2001 did the same.

It is said that we cannot change history, and that there are no ifs in it. But we can always carve the future of our country. May the lessons of the events of yesteryears be a guide on making a better future for our country.

Today is the eleventh anniversary of EDSA Dos. Did it already become a repressed memory? Do you still give a damn about it?

Today is the eleventh anniversary of the EDSA Dos. And no one seems to gives a damn to throw a celebration. And I don’t think the woman who replaced Joseph Estrada, who is now detained at the Presidential Suite of Veteran’s Memorial Medical Center, is celebrating either.

Elsewhere:

The Battle for Renato’s Corona

Today, we make history.

After former President Joseph Estrada’s impeachment trial in 2000-2001 and the it’s-almost-an-impeachment-trial for (Former) Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez last year, another impeachable official is set to be impeach.

This time, in the person of the highest official of the Judiciary Department – the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Renato Corona. This is a battle whether he will keep his corona as the country’s Chief Justice or not. This is the battle for Renato’s crown.

As an impeachment primer, I watched last night’s Cheche Lazaro Presents: Impeachment on ABS-CBN. In that documentary, it featured the history of impeachment trial from former president Joseph Estrada up to the cases against Chief Justice Renato Corona.

Estrada was not impeached. Instead, he was forced to step down from the office. Merceditas Gutierrez resigned as Ombudsman before the trial started. And, if things go as planned, this is the first time when we will witness afull impeachment trial.

One of the things that left me a huge question mark on the Chief Justice’s – and probably the whole Supreme Court’s – credibility was when Maritess Vitug, author of the controversial book Shadow of Doubt: Probing the Supreme Court, divulged items about the dark, hidden parts (and proceedings) in the Supreme Court. (I seriously want a copy of that book but I can’t find any here in the Laguna-Batangas area.)

After watching Cheche Lazaro’s documentary last night, I know only of one thing: It’s possible. Chief Justice Renato Corona may be guilty of the offense hurled against him.

From the flip-flop decisions of the Supreme Court, the seemingly alliance andspecial favor for Former President Gloria Arroyo, the alleged unexplained wealth, to his controversial last-minute appointment, he has a lot to explain.

I am not saying that he is guilty of the crime. There’s a proper venue to prove (or disprove) that, thanks to our democracy and Constitution – the impeachment court.

Today, we make history. Today is the first day of Chief Justice Renato Corona’s impeachment trial. And these are my personal opinion on the historical trial:

  • I hope the Senate and the Senators will be fair enough on this trial. Not only for the filipino people. Not only for Renato corona. But for the truth to come out.
  • Unlike the Estrada impeachment trial where Chief Justice Hilario Davide acted as the judge, this time, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile will be the one. It’s gonna be Manong Johnny “Gusto ko Hapy Ka” Enrile! In times like this, we really need an elder, an ancient, a veteran to help us find the truth. I just hope that he will not look like Palpatine/Darth Sidious when he got mad at the hearing for I will surely laugh my ass out (“The Dark Side of The force is strong with you!”).
  • During the Estrada trial, one of the most memorable line was Emma Lim’s “Uminom po. Hindi po kinakain yung iced tea” to Estelito Mendoza. I am looking forward to some “light moments” during the trial.
  • I am excited for Senator Lito Lapid on the impeachment trial. ‘Nuff said.
  • Is it just me or there is really a resemblance between Atty. Estelito Mendoza and former Associate Justice Serafin Cuevas? Is it their forehead? Their hair line? (Not only physically but intelectually. Estelito Mendoza was the brightest defender of Estrada during his trial. and, it may appear that serafin cuevas is Corona’s mightiest super hero on today’s trial.)
  • I admire Corona’s coolness earlier at the senate. Despite Prosecutor Niel Tupas’ statement against him, he remain calm. And poker face.
  • During the first impeachment trial in the country, Senator Enrile was there. today, he is still here. Will he still be on the third trial if ever?
  • If you were aware enough back in 2001 to watch the Estrada trial, you may notice that some of the Senator Judges are still on their seat as a Senator. Or, in some cases, their sons or daughter are present. (Destiny or dynasty?)
  • I learned last night that the other term for the Justices of the Supreme Court are the “Gods of Padre Faura”. (If that’s the case, wow! I have a God brod.)

The impeachment trial has started. And there’s more to come.as what I’ve said on Twitter, this is just the season 1 episode 1 of the Corona Drama.

And in the event that the Chief Justice is impeached – or steps down from the office – let us all keep an eye on our President on who he will pick as the next Chief Justice. We do not want an administration who has a sole power/ influence on the Executive, Legislative, and Judiciary Departments.

After all, this is for the people of our country.

Let the truth and justice prevail on this impeachment trial.

Viva Filipinas! Vaya con Dios! Padayon!

P.S. I chose the front page of the Philippine Daily Inquirer because the image includes all of the ingredients on today’s historical trial – The Senator Judges, Chief Justice Renato Corona, the Prosecution Team, and the Defense Team.

Elsewhere: