• The fall of Benham Rise and the rise of Benham Fall

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    ROLLY G. REYES

    Truly, we are a country where talk is cheap. Not even knowing the details of what lies underneath, politicians started throwing lightning rods at each other. If Benham Rise could only speak, it would have said “back off and leave me alone.”

    * * *

    As one expatriate told me once: “Not one magnificent edifice can be built here in your country if a day-old idea gets tons of criticisms the day after.” I did not believe him then but seeing things happen in decades, somehow I think he made sense.

    * * *

    If PRRD will allow China to jointly explore Benham with the Philippines, the US and EU will frown. If he allows the US, the left and China will object. Allowing any, nationalists will cry “foul” and label any deal as an intrusion of our national sovereignty.

    But one sure and funny thing is that the opposition will always oppose any choice no matter what.

    * * *

    Digong to Leni: “Marry me.” A “pious” congressman in Metro Manila will definitely oppose the idea.

    * * *

    “Impeachment will be very divisive,” says Robredo. Considering the results, one is liable to ask if her video sent to the UN was unifying.

    * * *

    Davao City Rep. Karlo Nograles noted that it was quite obvious that the publication of an article about Duterte was the handiwork of the spin doctors of the President’s critics.

    “They are so desperate that they are not even subtle in making their intentions known. Imagine a story printed on an American broadsheet reprinted verbatim by a Philippine newspaper on the same day.”

    Printing “in tandem?”

    * * *

    Philippine Navy to keep an eye on Benham Rise. We humbly wish that they use both eyes to be sure.

    * * *

    Coca-Cola Philippines to buy more local sugar – Piñol. I consider this a very good development as our sugar is one of the world’s sweetest. Our farmers should start planting more ampalayas to take advantage of the expected surge in demand from diabetics.

    * * *

    Greco Belgica asked the Court to disbar Ombudsman Morales for violating the Lawyer’s Oath and the Canon of Professional Responsibility after she dismissed the graft and technical malversation case against former President Benigno Aquino 3rd in connection with the Disbursement Acceleration Program. “Taking into consideration the fact that the former president appointed her, her conduct of favoring the former president adversely reflected her fitness to practice law,” he said.

    “Disbarment” is a slap on the wrist compared to being “behind bars.”

    * * *

    President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday night accused three of his loudest critics—Senator Antonio Trillanes 4th, detained Senator Leila de Lima and Vice President Leni Robredo—as being behind the move to boot him out of Malacañang.

    Waiting for the cut and paste reaction from the three: “this is all hubris, a blatant lie, definitely without basis and meant to besmirch my reputation.”

    * * *

    Somebody suggested that in the proposed Charter change, the legislative should have three chambers – the Senate, the House of Representaves, and EU Parliament.

    * * *

    Vice Ganda flatly denied that he will be involved in making a movie about national security. He is not keen on doing “Praybeyt BENHAMin, It’s Spratley Time and Tawag ng Panatag.”

    * * *

    I think that penalizing the 54 who voted against death penalty was untimely and risky. Drawing the “first blood” was unnecessary at this early stage. All for a “watered down” version which even PRRD described as lacking vital inclusion of other heinous crimes?

    * * *

    Numbers are needed in pushing more important legislative agendas like tax reform, economic reforms, charter change and other pro-poor legislations.

    * * *

    Did they ever think that due to the dissenting 54, the Hous will not be seen as a rubber stamp institution but a body that shows a healthy respect for members who choose to adhere to their religious beliefs and principles? Oh well…

    * * *

    Earth Hour is observed on March 25, an annual ceremonial switching off of lights to highlight people’s commitment to reducing carbon dioxide emissions. This is the only eclipse made by the human race even when the sun is absent.

    * * *

    House Speaker Paul Ryan sensationally pulled his Obamacare repeal bill from the floor Friday afternoon. It is not only that the Republicans were unable to repeal the law, they were also unwilling to fix the deficiencies that the White House says will collapse the law. And Trump blames everyone except himself.

    This is what happens when a leader wants to replace a law just for the sake of replacing it.

    * * *

    Thailand’s largest agricultural company is set to pour in $2 billion to expand its PORK and CHICKEN production in the Philippines in the next five years, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said. We have enough PORK in the legislature and CHICKEN politicians if you ask me.

    Seriously, I can see the employment opportunities here but I can see dead bodies of Filipino farmers as well.

    * * *

    The independence of the Executive, Legislative and Judiciary is well enshrined in our Charter to promote checks and balances. It’s just that we only see checks being encashed and we are left with the balance as always.

    * * *

    NCRPO flaunts Pulse Asia survey result: 82% metro residents “feel safer.” The survey did not answer my neighbor’s question – safe from criminals or safe from the police?

    * * *

    The presidency is like a car’s gearbox. You have to know manual shifting first. It’s not automatic that you can cruise right away by just pushing on the gas pedal. You have to shift to first gear first before you can shift to fifth. No shortcuts. No pretensions. Keeping this in mind will propel your ride to swift acceleration and you will reach your destination in no time at all.

    Don’t fret if you notice your clock or watch ticking slower, it’s proof that you still have the senses to notice the falsity of time measurement. Never blame the watchmaker as no man made things can withstand real time. And many others are gone to see the timepieces that you’re watching now.

    * * *

    Why senior citizens are exempted from fasting during the lenten season:
    – they’ve been fasting the whole year eating only limited and restricted diet.

    – their stomachs are already full of maintenance pills.

    – dentures very selective. Daily consumption is less than normal.

    – they are more preoccupied with frequent visits to toilets than eat and allocate time to think of meals.

    – poor eyesight to even read the menu.

    – weak digestive system and taste buds are malfunctioning.

    – eardrums drowned with reminders or warnings from family members not to eat unhealthy food.

    – not receptive to “all you can eat” promos or buffet as they can’t even finish a single order.

    – seldom gets invited to eat out except when there’s a need to use his or her senior citizen card for discounts.

    Good work, good deeds and good faith to all.

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