‘Hindi po tayo nag-iisa’

Rene Saguisag

Rene Saguisag

In this week’s Int’l New York Times, I read about 1) Al-Qaeda’s continuing mischief; 2) the troubles in Afghanistan, Syria, Ukraine, South Sudan, Cambodia (huge antigovernment rally—tens of thousands, like our 70-80T Million March), Benghazi, South Sudan and Mexico (so near the US, so far from God); 3) a suicide bombing in a rail station in Volvograd, Russia (killing at least 15, raising fears for the Winter Olympics six week away in Sochi); 4) Wall St. and China’s “princelings”; 5) Henyang China’s Smokey Mountains; 6) the Bangladesh Rana Plaza Factory complex collapse last year, killing more than 1,100; 7) a trapped Australian icebreaker in Antartica, with about 70 people, being rescued in vain thus far by another Aussie vessel plus a manque Chinese one trying to help—in disasters, we are one; 8) a Beirut car bomb killing six; 9) China local government debt rising to $3 trillion; and 10) the weakening yen in Abenomics (and freed Russian Tycoon Khodorkovsky’s troubles).

On CNN, I saw the flooding in Western Indonesia dislocating at least 18,000.

We just had a year with problems but it is not as if the Philippines alone had them. We had Yolanda and the world showed it cared. We are family and like any family, may I say in paraphrase of Columbia Law School Dean William Warren, that, we must survive our crises, mend the ruptures of our discord and continue to live and function as a unit.

Hundreds of South Korean soldiers will stay in Cebu for a year to help build or repair schoolhouses; there’s no talk of national sovereignty. What if they had been Kanos? Maybe no problem to dynamic Dick Gordon and the Red Cross of China, here to help.

Lord Palmerston said a nation has no permanent friends or enemies, only permanent interests. Let in the Medecins Sans Frontieres and the Chinese doctors in their hospital ship. I don’t hear the Professional Regulation Commission or the Philippine Medical Association complaining, which may be as it should be. No sense in looking a gift horse in the mouth.

Meralco’s Yuletide gift?
I hope it will settle for lower profits (P17.5B kuno in 2013?). The rate hike timing was rotten. Christmas and all. Did Meralco factor in and count on the Supreme Court (SC) being on holiday mode, as in past years, if my memory is true?

Chief Justice (CJ) Meilou Sereno (in her Second Adolescence, on the basis of a pix I saw the other day in the Bulletin) and Co. deserve kudos for thwarting an insensitive and un-Christian scheme by Grinches stealing our season of grace and goodwill. The SC of my youth worked hard even between Christmas and New Year; of such ethic I was reminded when our petition (the second, after that filed by may pal and fellow Bedan, Rep. Neri Colmenares & Co) got for consumers a quick sixty-day reprieve. I have been asked to help argue later this month. I said “No” as my days as an oral advocate are behind me. If insanely insisted upon, I will ask Rod Domingo, Nelson Loyola, Nards de Vera or Ruben Fruto to be ready to walk over me, after I faint and fall—and carry on.

Indeed, even savvy and knowledgeable Pete Ilagan (not a lawyer) of petitioner Nasecore can do the job. (The team met for hours on Rizal Day in Rod’s office and many gaps in my rate-making education in San Beda Law [Spanky Perez in Transpo] and Harvard [Derek Bok in Economic Regulation] were filled; we’ll meet again after we get the answers to the petitions.)

Government, in arguable conflict, is said to own 13 percent of Meralco, so government, MVP and Ka Oscar Reyes, may I genuflect and plead, “Please say po it ain’t so” and let the good or better times roll.

Even if to some mini-dinosaur like me the times that are would never be as good as the times that were.

When Macoy inflicted martial law, one good thing that ensued was the disappearance of the society page. It has long been back with a vengeance. Will the publicity help make a marriage work?

It may not necessarily follow. But, this time, I may be alone in a society crazy about mobile phone pixes and selfies. But a Michigan university agrees with me on selfie. See Manila Bulletin, January 1, 20103, p. 5, col. 1, and p. 1, col. for CJ Meilou’s pix.

The Pinoy’s Kodakia hilig or vice has been worsened by the ubiquitous mobile phones camera capability. How much time do we spend/waste in pix-taking?


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1 Comment

  1. Your column, Atty. Aguisag, with its passing citations of good Filipinos and passing reassertions of correct values, personal, social and political-economic, warms the heart of this senior citizen. Contrary to what you pessimistically noted, may 2014 bring us all more temporal as well as eternal benefits,