Hello world!

papa2I shall be writing topics as it comes to mind. It could be topics, past or present, but relative to the times. I shall also be reacting to articles published, whether domestic or foreign, and voicing my opinion. My views shall always be objective.

Every now and then I shall also be sharing with you videos, photos, sayings and graphics of people, animals, places, etc., that I find interesting, which I hope you will appreciate.

Also, there are times when I will be posting articles about facts – why it happened that way or what could have been if something else happened.

I welcome you to my blog site and I look forward to inter-acting with you.

Your participation, your thoughts and commentaries, either for or against, will be very much appreciated.

We may have differences in opinion but that is the essence of being rational, to be able to agree to disagree. It is my aim that as we go along we enlighten not only ourselves but also those that finds the opportunity/chance to visit this site.

Let us enrich each other in knowledge and build each other up in friendship.

Thank you.

Jesus Sievert a.k.a  Quierosaber

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¡Hola mundo!

Escribiré temas como estos vienen a la mente. Esto podría ser temas, pasadas o presentes, pero con relación a los tiempos. También reaccionaré a artículos publicados, doméstico o extranjero, y expresaré mi opinión. Mis vistas siempre serán objetivo.

De vez en cuando también compartiré con ustedes vídeos, fotos, refranes y gráficos de la gente, animales, lugares, etc., que encuentro interesante y espero que lo aprecian.

También, hay tiempos cuando fijaré artículos sobre hechos – por qué pasó así o lo que podría haber sido si algo más pasara.

Bienvenidos a mi sitio de blog y espero colaborar con Vd. en el futuro.

Su participación, sus pensamientos y comentarios, para o contra, serán muy apreciados.

Podemos tener diferencias en la opinión pero eso es la esencia de ser racional, ser capaz de consentir en discrepar. Esto es mi objetivo que como continuamos, aclaramos no sólo nosotros mismos sino también aquellos  que encuentran  la oportunidad/posibilidad de visitar este sitio.

Déjenos enriquecer el uno al otro en el conocimiento y en la amistad.

Gracias.

Jesus Sievert alias Quierosaber

Sandiganbayan goes after Imelda painting collection

Imelda Marcos

Imelda Marcos

Yes, she is the same Imelda, the widow of the Philippine despot Marcos, who has gained worldwide notoriety for her extravagant collections of jewelries and paintings, including her scandalous accumulation of over 3000 pair of shoes.

And, yes, she is the same Imelda who is back in power as a member of the House of Representatives, thanks to our short memory and equally notorious indulgent attitude in embracing those who, once upon a time, has caused us a lot of misery.

But while Imelda’s expensive collection of jewelries are now kept inside the vault at the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), the anti-graft court has now given the orders to seize some of her pricy paintings that are still out there.

At the behest of the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG), the places to be searched, aside from Imelda’s office in Congress, are all her known residences in Manila and Ilocos Norte.

In a three-page court order, the sheriff’s office was authorized to go after eight paintings that are named here, as follows: the Madonna and Child by Michelangelo Buonarroti, Femme Couchee VI (Reclining Woman VI) by Picasso, Portrait of the Marqueza de Sta. Cruz by De Goya, and Still Life with Idol by Gauguin, also to be seized for safekeeping are the LaBaignade Au Grand Temps by Pierre Bonnard, Vase of Chrysanthemums by Bernard Buffet, Jardin de Kew pres de la Serre 1892 by Camille Pisarro, and L’Aube by Joan Miro.

I just hope that what the authorities can repossess, if ever, are still the authentic and not the reproduction or bogus ones, because they are really up against a smart and devious family who to this day still claims they have not wronged the Filipinos, much less plundered the country to own the paintings.

My only fear really, is that, like the recovered jewelries, would the paintings, too, if indeed originals, will be witnessed by Filipinos to be auctioned and its proceeds given to the victims of the brutal Marcos regime?

Could this vision, opportunity and benefit become a reality for the poor victims while the Marcos family is back in political power and glory?

Presumably it is only President Aquino who could make this happen – exercising the utmost of his political will. And he has two years left yet to do it.

Otherwise, all these seizures of extravagant jewelries and paintings placed under judicial custody are exercises in futility, for more likely than not, in later years, it will end up once more in one of the despot’s heirs for they will be fighting tooth and nail to prevent it from getting disposed.

To put it more bluntly, the act of recovering the extravagant collections is simply to console the fools in us (consuelo de bobo).

(Recommending you to open this link for some ‘fruits of labor’ by the PCGG in their quest to recover some of the Marcos ill-gotten wealth: http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/379847/news/specialreports/infographic-the-hunt-for-the-marcos-ill-gotten-wealth).

Hong Kong’s struggle for autonomy

hongkongThe student-led demonstration in Hong Kong (HK) which has attracted even the older people, both professional and ordinary, is showing the world that they, too, do not want to be bullied by China.

The demonstrators have shown their strength in numbers as they have taken over the streets protesting China’s refusal to grant citizens full universal suffrage.

While China considers HK as one of its prized provinces – a jewel of a province, in fact – the Hong Kongers, however, sees themselves, since time immemorial, as one of the two SAR (Special Administrative Regions) of the People’s Republic of China, the other being Macau, with much more autonomy in its executive, legislative, financial, immigration, educational governance.

But, China sees it differently as it wants to make sure that the political landscape governing HK is also to their liking and control.

The discontent and distrust in the way China is handling HK is now resulting to the biggest rally by pro-democracy activists and is seen to be plunging the economic hub into its worst political crisis since the 1997 handover.

Main reason here is that, while it is true that the HK leadership is elected by a pro-Beijing committee, China, however, has promised to let all HK citizens elect their next leader in 2017.

But the way it looks, the promise is not the kind of democratic process the people of HK were expecting since only two or three candidates, who have been vetted by a nominating committee, will be allowed to stand.

Pro-democracy activists call the arrangement “fake democracy”. Of course Beijing will not be foolish enough to put up a candidate that is perceived to be critical of the Communist Party.

Against Beijing, I don’t really think the HK demonstration will make much of a difference in what the leaders in the mainland want.

Suffice to say that Beijing will not take this strong dissension/opposition by HKongers passively.

Someone has to give in and, surely, it will not be Beijing.

Like they say, tough luck for HK, but that is the way the cookie crumbles.

Hospital arrest for Enrile

Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile

Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile

Sometime in early June 2014, when news were rife in the air about the impending issuance of arrest against Senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Bong Revilla for plunder and graft charges in connection with their alleged participation in the P10-billion pork barrel scam, Enrile boastfully announced that he was not only prepared to get arrested but was also ready to die inside his cell.

Enrile repeated insolently the same pronouncement when told about Estrada and Revilla’s appeal to the Sandiganbayan to spare him from arrest because of his advanced age, saying, “I thank them for that but I’m prepared. Even if I’ll die in my cell, it’s okay. At my age, I got through life already.”

Fast forward today and one can see that Enrile was simply pretending to be tough.

And this is really what Enrile has been doing in some momentous events in his life – pretending to be tough – like when he went against the dictator Marcos and ended up being saved by the people and also when he helped plot a coup against Cory Aquino with the help of the Reform the Armed Forces Movement (RAM) led by his attack dog, then Lt. Colonel, now Sen. Gringo Honasan, only to end up with his tail in between his legs after being sacked later. In both occasions he was the administration’s Defense Secretary.

Now Enrile has not only petitioned for bail, which request is still pending, but he has also asked that he be confined at the police hospital in Camp Crame, which the Sandiganbayan granted following the recommendations of a team of doctors from the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) who were tasked by the court to determine Enrile’s physical condition.

The court said placing Enrile under hospital arrest would “ensure prompt and adequate response should a medical emergency arise from his established medical conditions.”

However, the court said Enrile would only be allowed to remain in hospital detention “until he is determined by the doctors to be physically fit for detention” in a regular jail facility managed by the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology “or until further orders from the court.”

I doubt if this will ever happened – that Enrile will spend time at a regular jail, unless of course he wills it bull headedly.

Age and life threatening illnesses have not only caught up with Enrile quick and fast, but he has come to realize now that he no longer has the chutzpa to continue pretending he is tough.

Not every one is blessed in life to reach 90 years of age with mental faculties still intact.

Enrile has finally wised up to opt for hospital arrest and prolong life rather than purposely cut it short inside a cell – at his age.

Stranger donates kidney for Dad of pleading daughters

The Callaways

The Callaways

Good Samaritans have different ways of showing their compassion and generosity. Mostly it comes in the form of a helping hand or financial assistance.

But for Chris Carroll, it was willingly taking out part of him and giving it to a total stranger to save his life.

Carroll, who is from Texas, was so moved with sympathy upon chancing a photo online of a man’s two daughters holding a pleading sign that said, “Our Daddy needs a Kidney.”

It was the wife who painstakingly thought of the idea in a last-ditch effort to find a donor after her husband, Greensboro, Ga., police officer Raleigh Callaway, went into stage 5 kidney failure.

After Carroll saw the photo of Callaway’s daughters , he got himself tested, discovered he was a perfect match, and headed to Georgia with his wife.

“I just knew. Even though there were thousands of people who called in. I just had a feeling that was going to happen,” says Carroll. “We’re supposed to love one another. We’re supposed to sacrifice for one another.”

Chris Carroll

Chris Carroll

What a wonderful disposition Carroll has!

It was indeed destiny for both men, as they are recovering from the surgery in an Atlanta hospital.

“It’s just so important for me to continue to live, and to take care of my family,” says Callaway, who is “thanking God for allowing such a wonderful family to just come in to my life.”

Callaway’s wife says the surgery appears to have been a success and Carroll’s kidney is functioning “great” in her husband.

Former allies clipping Binay’s wings

Vice President Jejomar Binay

Vice President Jejomar Binay

For a while we thought Vice President Jejomar Binay would continue soaring high in surveys for the 2016 presidential election simply because of the image of incorruptibility that he has been trying to project of himself all these years.

Binay has been seemingly successful in packaging himself to many as scrupulous and honorable in his presidential bid, but sad to say his former allies are viewing him in different light and are now boldly coming out and stepping forward making sure to clip his wings so he won’t be able to perch on the presidential chair come 2016.

Granting that Binay’s former allies have political axe to grind, it is one thing, however, to just make a mouthful of negativism about the man’s character as their boss and as mayor of Makati, but it is another when one starts making statements and showing files, records and other incriminating documents about how corrupt he was during his term as mayor of Makati. From the anomalous biddings, to the scandalous kickbacks, on to the despicable land grabbing and down the sleazy conspiracy of using dummies to conceal his alleged illegally obtained wealth.

What is even damning about all these confessions is that they are corroborative and made under oath as the Senate blue ribbon committee continues its investigation in the alleged overprice Makati building constructions.

I need not mention anymore here what has transpired in today’s investigation, but suffice to say that corruption and corrupt practices is what happened and continues to happen during the three Binay administration, starting from Jejomar, then his wife, Elenita, and now the son, Jejomar Jr.

No wonder the Binays now are seeking the help of the Supreme Court to stop the Senate probe on the Makati building anomaly.

Continuing the probe will unmask further how the Binays had been lording it over Makati and expose more of Vice President Binay’s shenanigans including his true hidden assets.

What I intend to do here is simply to invite all and sundry to watch the televised proceedings.

By watching it, Filipinos will learn to deduce the significance in what to see in a candidate, especially if he is aspiring for the highest position of the land. Looks and showing gentle manner in public can all be put on to deceive the wickedness of man.

After watching the events on TV, this much I can say about Vice President Binay: If he successfully corrupted Makati by his deeds as Mayor, what will prevent him from screwing the whole of the Philippine Islands when he becomes the President?

Will the Binay dynasty lord it over the Philippine archipelago?

Indeed, telling questions to answer.

India joins elite club of deep-space explorers

indiaIn just its first attempt to put a satellite into orbit around Mars, India made history as the first Asian country to join the elite club of Martian explorers that includes United States, the European Space Agency and Russia.

The success of India’s Mars Orbiter Mission, affectionately nicknamed MOM, was not only greeted enthusiastically by NASA, but also by neighboring rival China which described it as “…the pride of India, the pride of Asia…”

“Today Mars has met MOM. MOM never disappoints. History has been created today,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced amid applause at the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) command center in Bangalore.”We have gone beyond the boundaries of human enterprise and innovation.”

The ISRO described the mission as flawless since it blasted off from India’s southern spaceport on November 5 last year.

Lacking enough rocket power to blast directly out of Earth’s atmosphere and gravitational pull, it orbited the Earth for several weeks while building up enough velocity to break free.

What made the historic feat of MOM, also called Mangalyaan, meaning “Mars craft” in Hindi, momentous, impressive and unusual is the fact that the 1,350-kilogram (nearly 3,000-pound) satellite, was developed with homegrown technology and for a bargain price of about $75 million. NASA’s much larger Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission, or Maven, which reached its position around the red planet very recently, cost nearly 10 times as much at $671 million.

MOM is said to now circle the planet for at least six months on an elliptical path that gets within 365 kilometers (227 miles) of the planet’s surface at its closest and 80,000 kilometers (49,700 miles) at its farthest.

Five solar-powered instruments will gather data that will help determine how Martian weather systems work and what happened to the water that is believed to have once existed on Mars in large quantities. It also will search Mars for methane, a key chemical in life processes on Earth that could also come from geological processes.

According to experts, none of the instruments will send back enough data to answer these questions definitively, but they say the data will help them better understand how planets form, what conditions might make life possible and where else in the universe it might exist.

For a country criticized as struggling to feed its people adequately and where roughly half have no toilets, its success has put the world more in awe now than just noticing this country of 1.2 billion people, most of whom are poor, as having a robust scientific and technical educational system that has produced millions of software programmers, engineers and doctors, catapulting many into the middle class.

But, more than anything, having the great opportunity to show some one-upmanship on its rival Asian superpower is what matters most.

Marcos son should stop telling Filipinos his father was a hero

Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Every time the country commemorates the declaration of martial law (Sept. 21) by the despot Marcos or remembers his birthday (Sept. 11), it is always an occasion that gives his son and namesake, Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr, the chance to mouth his family’s wish to have his father honored by laying him to rest at Libingan ng mga Bayani.

“It is his right because he is a soldier and he served in the military and his record speaks for itself. And he was the longest-sitting president in our history. By rights, he should be buried in Libingan ng mga Bayani,” Marcos said in a television interview. “We really need to start moving forward. I think bringing us back again to that conflict does not serve its purpose now.”

If it was just because he was ‘the longest-sitting president in our history, period, I really would not question it, let alone deny him the honor, even if he was not a bemedaled soldier (weren’t his medals questioned?), but, for Chrissake, what does history say of the man after declaring martial law 42 years ago?

Marcos Sr may have fought for the country against the Japanese oppressors, but what is worst than being a duly elected leader in a democratic country and later willfully turning himself to be the oppressor against his own people whom he had been sworn to protect?

Not only that. The despot and his wife, Imelda, yes, she with the scandalous 3,000 pair of shoes, and their cronies made the country their cash cow and left it impoverished as they all tried to get away with their stolen loot.

Because of our shallow memories and the Filipinos penchant for idolizing the notorious, the Marcoses are back in our midst and, of all places, in politics, strutting like peacocks in the corridor of power and showing their guile as ever as if they were not part of a horrid past.

It is about time Marcos Jr should learn what we mean when we call a spade a spade.

The reason why his father, Marcos Sr, is called a despot is because he was one and for good measure.

Could there have been the famous and pioneering People Power revolution if it was not because of his despotism?

Marcos Jr thinks that because he has clout now that it would be easy for him to fool and convince the Filipinos that his father was a hero, too.

Imelda kissing the glass viewing case of her husband's refrigerated crypt.

Imelda kissing the glass viewing case of her husband’s refrigerated crypt.

Oh, yes, indeed we are moving forward, thanks to his family preserving the despot’s body in a crypt in his hometown of Batac in Ilocos Norte.

What I am afraid is that the day the despot’s body is interred at the Libingan ng mga Bayani would be the day we will see the place in turmoil caused by the authentic fallen heroes for the infamy disrespectfully bestowed by a future insensitive president in their hallowed grounds.

(For more insight on the subject please open this link: http://quierosaber.wordpress.com/2011/02/17/no-to-marcos-burial-at-the-libingan-ng-mga-bayani/)