Issue of January 7, 2018

Panagbenga Flower Festival
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Happy New Year’s resolutions

Have you made your New Year’s resolutions yet? Let me suggest one for you.

“My New Year’s resolution for 2018 is to fulfill my resolutions of 2017, and which I should have done in 2016, because I promised to do them in 2015.”

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There is a proposed P210 million multi-level parking at the city-owned lot beside the Justice Hall. Finally lawyers and ordinary Baguio mortals like us may find some parking space.

At present, all the parking spaces around the City Hall and Justice Hall are reserved for the lords of Baguio.

When Glo Agunos was still the city prosecutor, we were able to cheat our way into using her parking space. We would park in the slot reserved for her and claim, rather falsely, to the security guard that we were the boyfriend of Pros. Agunos. Most of the time we got away with it.

That charade ended one day when an angry security guard prohibited us from parking, saying that he did not believe that we were the boyfriend of Pros. Agunos. Siguro isu diay talaga nga boyfriend. Heheheh

Happy New Year, Apo Glo.

Unfortunately, today, we could not use the same ruse and claim that we are the boyfriend of Pros. Elmer Sagsago.

If and when they build a multi-level parking space beside the Justice Hall, we hope it shall not be reserved for the other gods at City Hall. Otherwise our taxes would have been all for nothing.

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The reason why all Presidents after Cory could not convince the people to accept charter change was because the people suspected a hidden agenda. They were afraid that the real reason for wanting charter change was because the incumbents wanted term extensions. In short, it was a self-serving purpose meant to stay in power and was thus met with general condemnation.

Today, the leaders of Congress are already openly talking about a possible “No-el” or no elections in 2019 and beyond, in case there is a charter change and a shift in government. As a consequence the members of Congress will extend their terms and then also extend the term of the President. After only a year and a half in office, they are already thinking about term extension.

The evil that many people feared under previous Presidents is now openly flaunted. But the people are loving it. What has become of us?

Of course, maybe sensing possible resistance, the Palace has started to deny that the President likes term extension. But the cat is already out of the bag and happily running around the country.

Charter change can also be used to put an early end to the terms of the Vice President, the Chief Justice and the Ombudsman. That is what you call – hitting three girls with one stone.

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In his New Year address, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un warned the U.S. and the world that he had a “nuclear button” ready and available anytime.

U.S. Pres. Trump fired back and said that he also has a nuclear button and that it was bigger and more powerful than that of Kim Jong-un.

Sigue man, agpinnadakkel kayo ti kua…….

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According to the Gallup Polls, the Philippines have the third happiest people in the world. According to the Sustainable Development Solutions Network for the UN, however, we are No. 72 among 155 countries in the happiness index.

Whether it is No. 3 or No. 72, we should be happy that we are supposed to be among the happiest people in the world.

Our troubled history, starting from the Spanish conquest, the American annexation, the Japanese occupation, Marcos and Duterte martial law and authoritarianism, coup d’ etat, rebellions, uprisings, natural and man-made calamities must have been instrumental in forging us into a very durable, hardy and resilient people.

We are happy not because we have the highest living standards in the world, or that we are rich or contented or without serious problems. It may exactly be the opposite. We have however developed the ability to smile and joke about our misfortunes. Our key to happiness is our indubitable sense of humor which has become one of our unique traits.

We accept and laugh at each turn in life blaming it on luck. Good or bad, swerte swerte lang, wala kang magagawa. We are fatalistic to a fault.

And so we laugh over our trials and misadventures and we have survived for generations. And it may be the acceptance of the inevitable with a touch of humor that we find ourselves considered to be among the happiest people in the world.

Happy New Year!

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