Saturday, October 27, 2012

Political Dynasties: Philippines

It's campaign season soon in the Philippines as May 13, 2013 draws near and I certainly applaud the efforts of groups and individuals to assist in creating a more competent populace who can wield the power of suffrage wisely and responsibly. Lest we remain stuck in idiocracy-land!

 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=BBvIweCIgwk

 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=icmRCixQrx8

Although, these videos represent a criticism of US culture, the concept is practically the same from a political standpoint. Democracy is a numbers game and if we look at poverty levels and the dumbfounding penchant of the poor to find relief in a large number of progeny they "manufacture", so that these impoverished families can have more hands to help them for income generation (when kids should be sent to school, btw, instead of being encouraged to do child labor), then we are left with more uneducated people who are bestowed the right to vote for their preferred type of government (usually of the socialist type that facilitates in the expansion of subsidized social welfare programs, that IMO keeps us stuck in economic development limbo because instead of funneling money to infrastructure related and economic programs, officials are incentivized to scatter public funds to the growing number of poor and uneducated people). It does not help from a cultural angle, that although with fervent Catholic followers, the Roman Catholic Church in the Philippines struggles in making its constituents understand the value of natural family planning. While, it would be hypocritical for it to turn a blind eye on the issue of contraception and sex education for children, IMO, the Roman Catholic Church is put in a compromising position wherein it has to champion the ideals and principles of life (bearing) and the values of family building, while also having to contend with the more practical concepts of economic planning and the advancement of society and the standards of living in the Philippines.

These are of course the growing pains of a maturing democracy IMO, and although as slow as the pace may seem, as long as there is a slight nudge to the right direction, then it is all for the better. The true tragedy is to have progress be stifled or reversed by people who benefit from the less than ideal circumstances. More so do I think that it does not do society good if changes are abrupt and uncompromising. I think a sluggish pace allows people (through several generations) to come to terms with the realities and circumstances of society, as they adjust to the demands and insinuations of the times, while not necessarily traumatizing the current generation with cruel and dictatorial force.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=pGFf3SRP1bE



http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7hV5Xra6f0s

It's unfortunate really that we have social and cultural circumstances that facilitate the persistence of political dynasties. The impoverished masses remain susceptible to short term "baits" by traditional politicians, while ignoring long term institutional change and advancements. They, after all, feel that anything that isn't instantaneously beneficial would not alleviate their problems and frustrations in life. In turn, intentionally or unintentionally, retaining the flawed political culture.

It's truly a vicious cycle, but in the end, (Filipinos)...we create the type of society we want to live in...and so we live with it. Change can be attained by changing the cultural mindset in the numbers. After all, democracy is a numbers game, as we believe it to be and should be.


All compositions, statements and opinions of the author are copyright © Earl T. Malvar 2009-2012. All rights reserved. There is no honor, respect, admiration, intellectual and academic dignity garnered through plagiarism.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Of Bullies, Cyber-bullies, and Priorities (The Cybercrime Law in the Philippines)

LIBEL:

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines it as:

Definition of LIBEL

1
a : a written statement in which a plaintiff in certain courts sets forth the cause of action or the relief sought
b archaic : a handbill especially attacking or defaming someone
2
a : a written or oral defamatory statement or representation that conveys an unjustly unfavorable impression
b (1) : a statement or representation published without just cause and tending to expose another to public contempt (2) : defamation of a person by written or representational means (3) : the publication of blasphemous, treasonable, seditious, or obscene writings or pictures (4) : the act, tort, or crime of publishing such a libel 
 *from URL: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/libel

While I had originally intended this blog entry to be on the subject of bullying, especially after a recent local incident of a bully's father threatening, at gunpoint, a kid who apparently retaliated against a bully at school, became the subject of general discussion on the radio and TV, I couldn't help but find an ironic link to what legislators are impinging on our civil liberties.

In my search for something clever on the subject of the high school hierarchy, I stumbled upon these:

*Image from http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3065/2964612368_65232a9a72.jpg


FROM URBANDICTIONARY (URL: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=high%20school%20hierarchy)

Jocks
They date each other, hang out with each other. Sometimes cheerleader girls will hang out with girls who play other sports, like volleyball, gymnastics, or track. But jocks very rarely expand their social circles.

Music Kids
They're "hipsters" who play in the band or sing in the chorus or both, and take music very seriously. They take extra music classes, do the play and musical, and only hang out with each other.

Druggies
They generally hang out in some remote area of the parking lot before, after, and during school. They don't do much.

Sluts
These are the girls that crave attention, usually in the form of male Facebook likes, and then complain about creepers on their bikini/cleavage shot.

Ghetto
They are generally black or Hispanic. They talk loud, wear clothing that is much too tight, act uneducated, and Typee Lykee Diss .

Preps
Excellent grades, athletic, ambitious. They are the ones who came to public school after a private Catholic school. They make friends with the popular kids.

Nerds
Not necessarily smart, these kids love hanging out in their rooms with a video game. Sometimes they get good grades, but not always.

Goths
They hate the mainstream, just like music kids, but goths hate music kids too because they just hate everyone. They stay below the radar and sit in the corner.

Loners
They don't have any friends. They are often used by others for a quick laugh. They are bitter wallflowers. They either look down on others or are afraid of others.
I was extremely surprised that the bully role was overlooked! I mean, come on! Who doesn't know Biff Tannen?!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7wVEAgVPi8&feature=player_embedded

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwY5o2fsG7Y&feature=player_embedded

Or the O'Doyles?!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CsNgRmsx-14&feature=player_embedded

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Tb7yCCT4nM&feature=player_embedded

These lengthy definitions aren't from me and they weren't taken from Wikipedia, these are basically from Urbandictionary.com (a more timely and relevant basis for today's lingo and terminologies). Reading from the various definitions, it's pretty safe to say that there is a recurring theme of bullies being agents of undeserved misery to the defenseless.

FROM: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=bully

1. bully 1438 up, 182 down

A young hoodlum who revels in making peoples lives a misery during school years. Happily though, when they grow up they will have nothing more to look forward to than getting anally penetrated every day by fellow prisoners in the shower, or, by the prison wardens truncheon ;D
Bully me all you like loser, you're the one who will walk like John Wayne the rest of your life :D
 
2. bully 873 up, 123 down

A person who makes fun of others based on their own insecurities about life.
Man that big ugly bully makes fun of all of the smaller ugly people.
by Daniel Mar 10, 2005 share this add a video
 
3. Bully 215 up, 31 down

To humiliate, persecute, underestimate, harass, lower, tease, desocialize, hurt, discriminate, jeer, ridicule, bother, disturb, molest, trouble, embarass, mishandle, insult, weaker, injure, harm, affront, torture, offend, prejudice, torment, intimidate...
Arrogant,dictators wannabe,that BULLY other people, to prove that they are the cool ones. What they dont know is that they are slavers of their own clothes, bodies and futilities. Bullying is for those who cannot be as autentic as you.
4. bully 694 up, 122 down

The dumbest shit that think that making people miserable is good when it only makes them look dumber.
The bully gets what he deserves if he gets suspended.
 
5. bully 127 up, 18 down

Bullies are scum, pure and simple. They torment people who can't defend themselves, they revel in the suffering of innocent people who have never done anything to hurt them. They are the REAL reason for the Columbine shootings, they are the main reason for kids dropping out of school, or worse, commiting suicide. It's not just kids who can be bullies, teachers can be even worse, seing as how they have authority over the kids. But when their victims stand up for themselves, their true nature shows: a cowardly, spineless worm.
Bullying is a problem, a much bigger problem than violent video games.

Kids rarely confront conflict. Bullies instigate conflict because IMO they have a twisted sense and perception of how to use their perceived powers/capabilities. Even Captain America knows this *wink*.

NVM the "problematic home" excuse. That's BS, any civil and kind hearted person would never make another innocent by-stander's life miserable, just because his life isn't doing so well. That's what thieves and criminals do (dahil sa "matinding pangangailangan" daw), they make excuses and put the blame on the general conditions of their lives. Bullies merely pick on what they perceive to be weak people. Kids being bullied are torn with the realities of being bullied and the values that our educational institutions try to emphasize, i.e., forgiveness, tolerance, and non confrontation. Besides, kids will be labeled as snitches by the bullies if they tell adults or are mostly concerned of getting a "strike" record for fighting at school (even though it's against a bully). 

I've always felt that bullies of all ages deserve permanent locomotor paralysis, but that's just what has been embedded in my mind since my younger years. With great power comes great responsibility right? If these bullies are so tough and confident enough to think that they can't be touched (i.e., the illusion of being empowered) then they should have accountability and have a sober temperament with what they do instead of showing how irresponsible they can be if given the resources.

Meanwhile, I should add that it's extremely ironic that our legislators would pass an extremely flawed cyber crime law. When someone is elected into office (by the people!), they have been put there to be subjected to all kinds of criticisms. That's what the job entails. They are given extraordinary powers through their offices that no mere citizen will be able to wield. 

According to Senator Sotto, he inserted the libel provision because he felt that he was being bullied on cyberspace! Well, I don't know, maybe it was because HE WAS PLAGIARIZING somebody else's work by dismissing the names of the true authors of the ideas he had dispensed during his speeches?


Now, with the passage of a law like this, public officials are given the tools to "protect their untarnished reputations" by embedding the libel provision to the law so they can protect themselves against "cyber bullies", because they are oh so weak, defenseless, and powerless. Well, how about we pass a law for the sake of the kids being bullied?! How come these selfish aholes who have the backing of sovereign-conferred powers prioritize the protection of their own "images", when kids at school get mowed down by bullies? Are there no ideas for laws that would actually castrate would-be adult bullies, by disciplining bullies who are still at a young age?

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2012/09/philippines-new-cybercrime-prevention-act-troubling-free-expression

http://www.newsflash.org/2004/02/hl/hl112154.htm

http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/-depth/09/29/12/outrage-over-philippine-cybercrime-law

http://www.interaksyon.com/article/43591/whodunit--sotto-included-libel-in-cyber-crime-law-angara-sought-blocking-of-sites



All compositions, statements and opinions of the author are copyright © Earl T. Malvar 2009-2012. All rights reserved. There is no honor, respect, admiration, intellectual and academic dignity garnered through plagiarism.