Posted in Current Events, History on November 15, 2011 |
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In 1992, James Carville used the economy to catapult Bill Clinton in what is supposedly an uphill presidential battle against George Bush. The slogan “It’s the economy, stupid!” not only broke Bush’s approval rating but also sharply turned American opinion that from the 90% approval rating in 1991, the then US President was hammered with a disapproval rating of 64%. Intentionally, supporters of House Bill (HB) No. 4820 are also riding on the economy as a slogan to further push for the creation of a new province called Nueva Camarines out of Camarines Sur. But is the proposal to partition Camarines Sur really an issue based on “the economy, stupid!”?
One of the tarpaulins scattered in the different towns of CamSur
House Bill (HB) No. 4820 authored primarily by Partido Cong. Arnulfo Fuentebella seeks to create “a new province from the present Province of Camarines Sur to be known as the Province of Nueva Camarines consisting of the City of Iriga and the municipalities of Baao, Balatan, Bato, Buhi, Bula, Caramoan, Garchitorena, Goa, Lagonoy, Nabua, Presentacion, Sagñay, San Jose, Siruma, Tigaon and Tinambac.”
As of this writing, the bill is already at the Senate Committee on Local Government headed by Senator Bongbong Marcos after passing the Lower House at a vote of 229 to 1 with Rinconada Congressman Salvio Fortuno as the lone dissenter.
Bukag, Buwag and the Article’s Latag
The proposal to partition Camarines Sur is already bearing fruit. Even before any plebiscite is held, HB No. 4820 is already dividing not only the politicians in the province but also families especially those living in the Partido and Rinconada areas. It really stirred (bukag) the people that the debate which should focus on the merits of the partition has shifted to “the political versus the economic” debate and digressed further to ad hominem.
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Sometime ago, I conducted an orientation of enumerators for a survey. Right after the orientation, some of the participants were so eager to have an action so they asked permission to start the fieldwork. The rest, especially those who have experiences in conducting surveys, laughed at the eager ones and said, “Na-internalize niyo ba ang orientation? Baka pagdating sa actual work matameme kayo?”
Of course, there were friendly exchanges until one quipped, “Tama na ang satsat. Aksyon agad!” I agreed and for a demonstration, asked the less experienced yet aggressive ones to do the interviews. After a round or two we had an assessment and they said, “Mahirap pala. Pilosopo pa ang na-interview ko”.
Conducting a survey is dealing with people. Hence, first, it means strategizing: How should you approach the respondents? Second, it is marketing: Why would your chosen respondent answer you if they see no gains in return? Third, it is building relationships: Why would the respondents trust you for the information that they will share? Many would think that the information-generation and analysis are the more important ones but for me, these only come later.
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Posted in History on October 14, 2010 |
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Posted in History, Places & Destinations, Politics, Prominent Bikolanos, Uncategorized, tagged Bicol Places, Bicol politics, Governors, Historical facts, Masbate on October 6, 2010 |
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Masbate is known as “the wild, wild west of the Philippines” and “the poor man sitting in the pot of gold”. Thanks to recent developments, the province is starting to shelve these names. Election observers for the May 2010 elections found Masbate to be relatively peaceful compared with the previous elections, and that the National Statistics Coordination Board noted Masbate “sliding in the list from being the poorest province in the country in the year 2000 with 70.2% poverty incidence to the 8th most poor in 2006 with 59.5%.“
Unknown to many, however, Masbate is one of the early settlements in the Bicol Region. Artifacts dating back to as early as 10th century were found in Kalanay (now Aroroy), and when Captain Luis Enriquez de Guzman anchored on the shores of Masbate in 1569, he found tiny settlements spread along the coasts engaged in flourishing trade with China – an explanation why there are a number of Chinoys in the island-province. Masbate is also said to be the place where the Christianization of the Bicol started.
In part because it is the source of class lumber for the construction of galleons during the Spanish period, Masbate was declared a province in 1864. In 1908, this was revoked and Masbate was annexed to Sorsogon. Masbate again became an independent province on February 1, 1922.
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Posted in Arts & Literature, History on September 17, 2010 |
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In 1929, the Philippine Education Company published the book “Paintings of Twelve Philippine Women: Christian, Mohammedan, and Pagan”. These are the paintings of Fernando Amorsolo and his brother, Pablo; Fabian de la Rosa; and I.L. Miranda.
One of the paintings is the “Bikol Girl” by Fernando Amorsolo himself. According to A.V.H. Hartendorp, the editor of the Philippine Magazine, the painting, along with the other collections in the book, “must not be taken as representing the best work of (the) painter”. Even then, the painting presents a general picture of what Bikolana women looked like in the early 2oth century. As it is often said: A picture paints a thousand words.
Accompanying the painting is an ethnographic note of Professor H. Otley Bayer “Population of the Philippine Islands in 1916″. The population estimate, though, according to Hartendorp, is for 1928. The note is quoted en toto as follows:
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