Topless Woman Dances with Bees
Mapelli, 44, has created a lot of Internet buzz by topless dancing with 12,000 bees all at once.
The Portland, Oregon-based beekeeper describes her bee dances as “a duet among many.”
“These 12,000 bees push with their powerful wings from each side of my body, I resist and then I let go and flow and move with them,” she writes on her website.” It is a deep meditation and I feel the hive mind surround me, hold me, and expand my body on a cellular level.”
In order to attract the bees to her topless body, Mapelli anoints her body with a special pheromone oil that is equivalent to the scent of 100 queen bees.
The bees usually stay on her body for about two hours at a time.
When Mapelli is done shaking her tail feather with the bees, an assistant removes the pheromone oil around her neck and then she jumps up and down to shake off the swarm, the Daily Mail reports.
She then removes any stingers sticking to her flesh with a soft brush.
Mapelli believes her bee dances send a message to the bees as well.
“I hope to help the bees of the Northwest by encouraging them to swarm and become hardy to the ever-changing environment,” she said in the description for a bee dance video posted to YouTube in 2012.
By: Al Labita
The looming scenario looks dreadful.
Should President Aquino’s push to create a Moro state fizzle out, history would be unkind to him.
At the rate criticisms are heaped on his substate-for-peace deal with the separatist Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), Aquino may likely end up on self-imposed exile in Malaysia, his chief backer in peace talks with the rebel group.
Since the deal was inked last month, it has drawn a barrage of flaks, likening it to a sellout of part of Philippine territory, apparently Aquino’s way to put an end to decades of a bloody secessionist movement in the resource-rich region, the country’s second largest island next to Luzon.
Questions on constitutionality are hounding the envisioned Bangsamoro (Islamic state). These center on the time-honored Constitutional ban on the creation of a state within a state, a provision Aquino appears to have glossed over in pushing the proposed law
What legal experts find revolting, however, are certain provisions virtually diminishing the government’s sovereign powers, relegating some of them to Bangsamoro.
Specifically, they refer to the creation of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC).Composed of government and MILF representatives, the BTC would work on amending the 1985 Philippine Constitution, the basic law of the land.
“This is beyond ridiculous,” said Senator Miriam Santiago in a press statement. .“Say again?! Wh a – a – a – t?!”
Santiago, widely regarded as a Constitutional expert, is the first senator to call the so-called peace pact unconstitutional.Overall, she described the Malaysia-backed PH-MILF deal as an attempt to redefine the country’s sovereignty.
Like other legal experts, she questioned the provision in the agreement providing that the powers reserved to the central government will depend upon further negotiation with the MILF.
“Thus, the agreement diminishes the sovereignty of the Philippine government by listing what are the powers that the central government can retain,” the former regional trial court judge said.
In gist, the agreement not only reduces the sovereignty of the central government, but also provides that in the future, such sovereign powers as have been reserved may be further increased,provided the Bangsamoro agrees.
“It will therefore be the Bangsamoro which will determine what should be the remaining sovereign powers of the central government,” Santiago, a member of the International Court of Justice, said.
Bangsamoro, planned to be a new region with wider political and economic powers, will replace the graft-ridden Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).
Santiago, chairperson of the Senate committee on constitutional amendments, hinted that she will not support the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law which, if passed in Congress, will be subject to a plebiscite for approval or disapproval by the public.
“While I am chair, it will be extremely difficult to convince me, as a student of constitutional law, that the Bangsamoro Agreement respects the Philippine Constitution,” Santiago said.
Some groups are poised to question soon the deal before the Supreme Court, despiteassurance by the government and MILF that the proposed Bangsamoro law would comply with the Constitution without the need to amend it.
But on closer look, the PH-MILF pact contained provisions similar to those of the earlier scuttled Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain (MOA-AD).
That deal was supposed to be inked between the government of then President Arroyo and the MILF, but in October 2008, the Supreme Court struck it down as unconstitutional because it sought to establish a state within a sovereign state.
Under the MOA-AD, the existing five-province ARMM would have been expanded by more than 700 additional villages, subject to a plebiscite.
The proposed new entity then, to be called the Bangsamoro Juridical Entity, would have had its own police and military force and its own judicial system, among others.
“Both the MOA-AD and the Bangsamoro Agreement appear to facilitate thesecession of the Bangsamoro from our country, in a manner similar to the secession of Kosovo and Crimea,” Santiago warned.
Although the Constitution provides that natural resources belong to the state, in the Bangsamoro territory, only Bangsamoro will have exclusive jurisdiction over them.
Similarly, the pact’s annex on power sharing gives Bangsamoro “exclusive powers,” defined as powers or matters over which authority and jurisdiction pertain to the Bangsamoro government.
The accord also provides that only the Bangsamoro shall be under a ministerial form of government, while the rest of the country will operate under a presidential form of government.
Pundits say that in allowing itself as signatory to the deal with the MILF, Malacanang may have infringed upon the powers of the legislative branch.
As it appears, the agreement should not have identified the executive as the “Philippine government.”
The reality is that only one of the three branches of government – the executive branch, consisting of the Office of the President acting through a peace panel of negotiators – represented the government in talks with the MILF.
It may also be argued that the executive branch alone does not represent the Philippine Government, a fact that the MILF may have just shrugged off to speed up the signing of the accord for its own sake alone.
Simply put, the executive branch, in negotiating the agreement with the rebel group, had no power to bind the two other branches – legislative and judicial — to the controversial deal.
By all accounts, the executive “misrepresented” itself as the government, an error in judgment on Aquino’s part for which he will pay a costly political price – the likelihood of ending up in exile in neighboring Malaysia.
US Interest Groups
Remember the classic global war on terror wherein countries were forced to believe that Iraq under Saddam Hussein was actually keeping weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and that nations had to form a coalition of the willing in order to put an end to this ‘madness’ by a madman. In the end, there was no WMD and the sovereign nation of Iraq was destroyed and killed thousands of innocent civilians and put the country in chaos for the price of regime change in order to establish a democratic government and save Iraqi people from human rights violation, no thanks to ‘Washington interest groups’.
Once again, this time in Ukraine the US WIG used the pretext of protecting democracy and human rights to interfere in the internal affairs of state and overthrowing the disagreeable political regime (another American WIG regime change). WIGhas supported right-wing extremists groups in Ukraine standing for the spread of ultranationalist ideas under the principle: ”Ukraine for Ukranians”.
The West was not reportedly troubled by the fact that as a result of the rebellion, democratically elected president who had won the elections that were recognized by the OSCE as open and transparent, was ousted. Rather than wait for the elections in 2015 and try to change the Ukranian leadership democratically, emissaries of the West have provoked illegal military option ignoring all rules of democracy. The so-called Ukranian revolution was accompanied by extreme violence by protesters while Western pro-US media replicated TV reports covering allegedly peaceful protest movement.
The position of the US WIG closest allies in the EU and the Pacific region are stipulated by conservative vision of the world formed by Washington, forced them to sacrifice their own economic interests for the sake of achieving the US WIG controlled foreign policy goals. Japan following the order from Washington has pledged economic aid in the amount of $1.5 billion to Ukraine and has frozen profitable investment cooperation with Moscow, the UK has stopped the delivery of military items to Russia and Germany has suspended the military contract costing 120 million euros. Following the risky course of Washington interest group has caused economic and political damage to ministers and other EU leaders who openly marched among the radical nationalists who profess racist and xenophobic ideas.
In condition of unprecedented pressure by the US and EU associated with the referendum in Crimea on international community, the BRICS countries have taken an independent stand and on the sidelines of the Nuclear Security Summit in Hague have issued a statement condemning the use of sanctions during Ukranian crisis resolution. They have pointed out that the policy of force and economic sanctions are futile and not conducive to a balanced and peaceful resolution of the crisis.
As Dr. Paul Craig Roberts writes “the American, UK, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand, EU propaganda machine has blamed Putin for all the trouble. But so far the Russian government has not had to do anything except comply with the self-determination of the people in the Russian areas of Ukraine. Much of Ukraine, as it exists or existed today, consists of Russian territories added to Ukraine by Soviet rulers.
When Ukraine became independent with Russia’s agreement when the Soviet Union collapsed, had the Russian territories first been put back into Russia from whence they came, Washington’s coup would not have resulted in the same level of crisis.
Instead, under Washington’s pressure, the Russian territory was retained by Ukraine, and in compensation Russia was given a 50-year lease on Sevastopol, Russia’s Black Sea naval base.
The purpose of the Washington financed and orchestrated coup in Kiev was to put Ukraine, with its artificial boundaries, into the EU and NATO and to evict Russia from its warm water port and ring Russia with US missile bases. Washington and its European puppets described this as “bringing democracy to Ukraine.”
Ukraine already had democracy, a young one trying to put down roots, and Washington destroyed it. As Russian President Putin observed, overthrowing a brand new democracy destroys democracy. Washington’s coup established for Ukraine the precedent that force and propaganda rule, not democracy.
But Washington cares not for democracy, only for its agenda. And Russia, China, and Iran are in the way.
The neoconservatives, who have controlled US foreign policy since the Clinton regime, concluded that the Soviet collapse meant that history has chosen America as the socio-economic system for the world. They declared the US to be “exceptional” and “indispensable” and above international law. Washington had a free pass to invade, murder, destroy, and dominate. The neoconservative claims of “American exceptionalism” sound like Hitler’s claims for the German nation. When the White House sock puppet expressed in a speech the claim of American exceptionalism, Putin replied: “God made us all equal.”
Washington’s opinion is that the exceptional and indispensable nation–the US–is above not only all other nations but also above law. What Washington does is legal. What anyone else does in opposition is illegal.” Dr. Roberts concluded.
So what else is new? The continuing effort of ‘Washington Interest group’ through their government witting tool agents together with its willing allies will put the entire planet into the brink of another war.
This is what Putin thinks (taken from the article by Dr. Roberts), Americans have no intention of working anything out. They intend to subjugate Russia. Washington wants Russia powerless, surrounded with ABM bases that degrade our strategic deterrent to uselessness. These Americans will not work with me. They will not listen to me or to Russia’s Foreign Minister. They only hear their own call for American hegemony over the world. My only alternative is to prepare for war.
What was not told was that the puppet master in China is believed to be secretly dealing with the US WIG to save themselves from the peoples anger, fanning intrigues and also pushing the government of China to analyze Washington’s war plans for war against China and be fully aware of Washington’s “pivot to Asia,” in which the “indispensable nation” announced its “safe-guarding of peace” by surrounding China with naval and air bases, understands that it has the same Washington enemy as does Russia.
What the entire world faces, every country, every individual regardless of their political orientation, is a global reptilian elite engineered confrontation with US against Russia and China. This confrontation is enabled by WIG’s
bought-and-paid-for European and UK puppet states. Without the cover provided by Europe, Washington’s acts of aggression would result in war crimes charges against the government in Washington. The world would not be able to enforce these charges without war, but Washington would be isolated.
The cat is out! According to Brian Wingfield of Bloomberg news (April13,2014 Businessmirror), Washington Interest Groups owe Russian President Vladimir Putin a big thank you. Putin’s annexation of Crimea is being cited in Washington as a reason to do everything, from building an oil pipeline to accelerating private space flight and even boosting export of natural gas. US is also dependent on Russian made rocket engines.
What emboldened China to bully us? Despite the published support of the US to the Asian against the bullying of China, action speaks more than words. It’s not a secret anymore that US owe China trillions of dollars. US first lady Michelle Obama, Defense secretary Chuck Hagel even visited Beijing lately. There’s even a talk concerning the US-China Bilateral Investment Treaty(BIT). It is now clear that these super elites self-interest among superpowers dictate the global scenarios coming. Not even governments and leaders can stop their evil agenda. Be wary!!!
Building Green: An LGU Imperative
[Speech by Sen. Loren Legarda’s Speech
Forum on Green Building Initiative
23 April 2014 – Dusit Thani Hotel, Makati ]
The future communities in the Philippines will vastly differ from the ones we live in today. As we witness the 21st century unfold, our nation faces a new set of technological, socioeconomic and global challenges that are more complex than any of us have ever experienced in our shared history. They dramatically alter the way we live in our communities, and at stake is the quality of life, not only of ours, but of our progeny.
It is the responsibility of the government, especially local government units, to understand these challenges and to take proactive measures that will optimize our nation’s future — to plan, build and support sustainable communities.
The U.N. World Commission on Environment and Development described sustainability as a development that ‘meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.’ A sustainable community is an end goal: the government and the people share a common vision, engage each other in the intricacies, and together bring it to fruition.
The first step towards building a sustainable community is to correct one of the biggest misconceptions about the environment—that natural resources are infinite. Clearly, Earth’s resources are not limitless. We are now witnessing the rapid decline of our forest cover, water supply, air quality and the demise of our biodiversity.
In order to build a sustainable society, it cannot be business as usual. We need to stop consuming more than we need and start making sacrifices, including cuts in our greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
The Asian Development Bank’s Key Indicators for Asia and the Pacific 2012 noted that the increase in carbon dioxide emissions could rise to 10.2 metric tons per capita by 2050 if interventions to reverse the trend are not introduced.
A cursory look now proves that the 4-degree Celsius world, which may have seemed impossible 20 years ago, is not far off today.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 4th Assessment Report suggested that a 1.5 to 2.5 degrees Celsius increase in global mean temperatures from pre-industrial levels threatens extinction of 30 percent of all species.
Climate change, according to reports, threatens food security as crop yields are estimated to decline by 19 percent in Asia towards the end of the century. Rice yield in the Philippines is projected to decline by 75 percent. A 4-degree scenario doubles these impacts.
A hotter global temperature will result in damaging sea levels, extreme weather and food insecurity. Flood, droughts and hunger are already issues we are dealing with today. The more frequent and stronger storms we are experiencing have been affecting our economic development as well.
For instance, losses due to Typhoon Yolanda are estimated at 571 billion pesos, which represents close to five percent of the Philippines’ annual GDP. Meanwhile, losses due to typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng in 2009 were equivalent to 2.7% of the country’s GDP.
Indeed, climate change has changed the magnitude and frequency of extreme weather and climate events.
What has brought about the state we are in today?
Key findings of the IPCC 2012 Special Report on Extreme Events revealed that climate change is “unequivocal” and that there is 95 percent likelihood that human activity is the cause of global warming.
Human activity released 545 gigatons of carbon dioxide—the main greenhouse gas from 1750 to 2011.
The Philippines is a minor emitter of GHG. But even as we are taking steps to demand the world’s biggest polluters to reduce their carbon usage for the sake of the planet, we cannot just wait for other parties to turn their commitment into action.
We need to take care of our own backyard so to speak, and in this case we need to make that first step in controlling the levels of anthropogenic pollution. We can cut our carbon emissions, improve our environment and create sustainable communities if we build green.
This is why we are all here today in a triumphant mood. The Climate Change Commission Resolution No. 5, which has been endorsed by President Benigno Aquino, is an important piece in that blueprint towards creating a more sustainable and liveable nation.
When we build green we help reduce our global carbon footprint, we cut down costs and we improve our citizens’ overall way of life. The implementation of the National Climate Change Action Plan by LGUs makes sure that building green not only looks good on paper but also for the planet.
We must also promote community resilience. LGUs could prioritize resilience as part of their political and sustainable development agenda and make reducing disaster risk their legacy opportunity. Paying attention to protection will improve environmental, social and economic conditions, including combating the future variables of climate change. It will also make the communities more prosperous and secure than before. Initiatives could include making schools, hospitals, and other critical public infrastructure resilient against disasters.
As a fundamental development strategy, building resilience would help our government sustain the country’s socio-economic gains, and make a significant difference in poverty reduction.
LGUs are responsible for building sustainable societies where building green will be a way of life. Thus, I urge our LGUs to support this with passion and commitment. I hope that there will be no extensive bureaucratic entanglements because there is no time to lose.
I congratulate the Philippine Green Building Initiative, International Finance Corporation and Climate Change Commission for this initiative and I look forward to the success of this program so that finally all buildings and structures will be built with safety and resilience as the primary foundations. Thank you.
Programming World Stunned By Bug
By Allysa Faye Greganda
It’s time for tech companies to fund a team that constantly checks the strength of everything that is in the internet. These days, we depend on the Internet for half of our lives. Weenjoy its benefits, but surely no one wants to be victimized right within the tip of his own fingers.
Out of the 7 billion people alive as of this moment, 2 billion are actively using the internet. You are actually one of those 2 billion people who risk personal information, transaction records and confidential details with an average of 30,000 hacking attempts every day. The figures do speak of something. But the question is, how sure are you that you’re not a part of the 30,000 incidents per day?
We are not new to the tactics of hacking—the stealing of data that can be possibly used to access bank accounts and whatnot. There is a long history of serious hacking incidentsthat have caused companies to shut down and lose millions of consumers. Take Mt. Gox as the perfect example.This is the world’s largest bitcoin exchange company, and it has been hacked of $450 million some months ago.
To hack a website or a person’s account, it usually requires direct contact and the person unknowingly giving permission to inject a virus that will get through the encryptions. Just weeks ago, the internet community was stunned when three engineers discovered the Heartbleed bug that’s been in existence for two years already. No programmer has ever thought that a bug, a simple programming error, can be the biggest flaw in the history of the internet.
World Weak Web
Last April 3, 2014, engineers from Codenemicon and Google found out about this serious hole in the internet. For the non-techie’s information, the internet is a virtual world. There are a lot of places to visit there, and these are called websites. Each website has its TLS (transport layer security protocols) to filter information, and to keep and protect them. Using this method will keep our personal details from being stolen by hackers. But why is it vulnerable to be attacked if TLS is supposed to secure information?
The hole in the websites came from a software called OpenSSL. This software as well is an implementation of the TLS. In other words, OpenSSL is like an operating system used by website hosts. This software is created by a group of programmers and is offered online for free. This is the only available software for TLS. That is why 66% of websites according to Netcraft’s April 2014 Web Server Survey uses OpenSSL. And this 66% as well has been using the latest version of OpenSSL, which is recently discovered to contain a vulnerable code for a span of two years, since its release last 2011.
Because it is the only available software, even less-visited websites use this, including government websites in the Philippines. Yet, no oneknew if someone noticed the bug earlier. Someone could have, but the person never reported it because he might have taken advantage of the weakness. There are many rumors about the possible abuses made before the bug was discovered, yet those werenot proven.
Debugging The Problem
The good news is, 33% of websites in a span of two years were safe from the vulnerability especially the most-accessed social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google, Yahoo and others . The other good thing is, Open SSL was able to release a solution, a patch file just a week after the report to cure the problem. It was announced that the internet community is safer, but not totally until everyone has updated their TLS. The least a normal user can do is to constantly change passwords as frequent as possible. Users should always countercheck if the websites they are trying to access are safe enough to engage with. We should also keep updated if any new mode of attack is spreading.
This incident should be taken up seriously. Hacking is illegal and is considered a serious crime. Weshould not be relaxed about it because a number of victims were caught unguarded. Hackers break into systems forpersonal, and often criminalreasons.Everyone should get involved. Google and Facebook are just fortunate enough to hire skilled programmers to defend its system from intruders. But how about the others?
How about the safety of the entire community? Since the internet is a virtual realm, then just like in the real world, there must be a team to ensure the security of the netizens. There is always a tendency to commit human error. However, two or more heads are better than one, as they say.
(The author is a graduating student of AB Communication in the University of Perpetual Help System Laguna. She is currently working as an intern for OpinYon.)
500m Year-Old Embryo of Unknown Animal Found
A Cambrian embryo fossil exposed by acid etching on rock. The polygonal pattern suggests that the embryo was in the multicellular blastula stage of development. Tiny, spherical fossils found in southern China appear to be the embryos of a previously unknown animal.
The fossils come from the Cambrian, a period dating from 540 million to 485 million years ago and known for an explosion of diversity. Some of the organisms that appeared during the Cambrian, such as the bug-like trilobite, had exoskeletons and other hard parts that fossilized nicely. Others, including sponges and worms, were made of soft tissue that rarely preserves.
Researchers Jesse Broce of Virginia Tech, James Schiffbauer of the University of Missouri and their colleagues were searching for these rare soft-tissue fossils in limestone from the Hubei province of southern China when they found something even more rare: tiny spheres, including some with polygonal patterns on their surfaces. These itsy-bitsy fossils are most likely fossilized embryos, the researchers report in the March issue of the Journal of Paleontology. The fossils come from the third stage of the Cambrian, dating back to around 521 million to 541 million years ago. [See Images of a Giant Cambrian Creature]
“We found over 140 spherically shaped fossils, some of which include features that are reminiscent of division-stage embryos, essentially frozen in time,” Schiffbauer said in a statement.
The researchers began their investigation by attempting to dissolve fossils out of the limestone from China’s Shuijingtuo formation with acid, but that method seriously damaged or destroyed the spherical fossils. Researchers then hand-chiseled the rock into millimeter- or centimeter-sized chunks, exposing the fossil surfaces manually.
From there, the researchers investigated the spheres with a variety of techniques, including slicing them into thin sections, which can be viewed under a microscope. The scientists also imaged the fossils with X-ray and scanning electron microscopy and X-ray techniques.
The results showed specimens with a phosphate-rich envelope surrounding a ball of calcite. (The organic compounds that once made up the embryos have long since mineralized.) Some of the spheres had polygonal patterns that look very similar to those seen on fossilized embryos from Markuelia, a Cambrian worm-like creature. The researchers believe that these specimens are blastulas, which are an early, multicellular stage of embryonic development.
It remains a mystery what these embryos would have grown up to become. Fossilized embryos from a variety of species pop up occasionally in the fossil record, from a 380-million-year old fish with an embryo still in her belly to dinosaur embryos still curled up inside their eggs.
(Stephanie Pappas, Senior Writer/ LiveScience.com)
Russian City Sees Fireball In The Sky
Residents of Murmansk, a city in Northern Russia, reported seeing a huge fireball tearing through the night-sky. The event occurred at 2.10am local time Saturday and was caught by several dashboard cameras, according to Russia Today. The authenticity of the videos hasn’t been confirmed yet.
The bright object was seen just days before the annual Lyrid meteor, which is expected to peak April 21 and 22, according to The International Business Times.Meteors, the bright flashes of light streaking across the sky, are fairly common. However, several of these meteors are never observed as they occur during the day or at remote places on Earth.
A meteor making it to the earth’s surface is a very rare event. About 99.99 percent of meteors completely disintegrate before reaching the surface, according to The American Meteor Society.Last year, a large rock landed near Chelyabinsk in Russia. The meteorite explosion injured over 1,000 people. The radiation caused skin and retinal injuries in several people.The Chelyabinsk explosion was the largest meteorite explosion in the world since 1908, according to IBT.
Several studies have been conducted on the Chelyabinsk meteorite. Russian Academy of Sciences researchers have reported that the rock that hit Russia last February exploded with an energy of nearly 500 kilotonnes of TNT, according to the Guardian.Astronomical Institute, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic researchers published a paper November, 2013. The study reported that the Chelyabinsk meteorite might have been a part of the asteroid 86039.
MVP for 2016 VP
MANNY V. Pangilinan has repeatedly said he is not running for President in 2016. But he could be running for Vice President, instead. That is, if Vice President Jejomar Binay got his way.
Speaking to reporters, the former mayor of Makati City confirmed he is considering MVP as his running mate in the 2016 polls—and with good reason.
Considered as one of the most influential men in the country today, MVP is the perfect running mate for any presidential aspirant since he is at the helm of corporations and industries crucial to the Philippine economy: Philippine Long Distance Company, infrastructure giant Metro Pacific Investments Corp., Manila Electric Company, Metro Pacific Tollways Corp., Maynilad Water Services Inc., gold producer Philex Mining and the biggest local power player Manila Electric Company. And with vast holdings in media, health services and various other industries, MVP already wields enough power and financial resources to propel his chosen political allies into the halls of power come 2016.
But MVP is not the only person in Binay’s list of potential bets for VP. Last month he was mouthing off the name of another MP—that of Saragani Representative and boxing legend Manny Pacquiao—as running mate. Another potential mate for Binay is Ate Vi, Batangas Governor Vilma Santos Recto. But like MVP, Vilma has also repeatedly stated that she has no plans of seeking higher office in 2016.
With 2016 just around the bend, the Liberal Party is said to have already begun to raise funds for the campaign kitty of its next presidential standard bearer be it Mar Roxas or Kris Aquino. The LP, too, would benefit immensely having a man of MVP’s stature in its corner.
Let’s put ourselves in MVP’s shoes for a minute. Would it be wise to associate with any single political party in 2016? We think it’s not. And MVP knows it very well that for the sake of his business empire it is best to remain neutral and to stay out of politics.
“There is no political blood that runs through my veins,” MVP said back in October. “I believe I can serve our people better some other way,” he said.
Business and politics do not make good bedfellows. By staying neutral, MVP can play all sides of the fence and emerge a winner regardless of the outcome of the 2016 polls. All he has to do is to spread his bet—put money on the ruling party, on the opposition and the long shots, too. This way, MVP’s business empire is guaranteed to survive and thrive beyond 2016.
Life Beyond Work
“Wisdom is knowing what to do next; virtue is doing it.”
~David Star Jordan (1851-1931)
Educator, Author, Peace Activist
A fulfilling and satisfying life means more than the usual office-home routine.
A university friend I haven’t seen or heard from in several years sent me a message in Facebook last month. He was asking for information on volunteer groups so that he, in his own words, “has something worthwhile to do in his life.” Though his desire to be part of a socio-civic group might have been driven by wanting to have a social life outside of work, he could easily fill that gap by NOT doing volunteer activities. Yet he chose to share his time with others with the hope that by helping improve the lives of others, he improves his too.
Young professionals like him have the resources – time and energy – to volunteer and to actually do something concrete to help improve lives. I salute him and the yuppies who are like him.
This article outlines some of the volunteer services and groups I suggested to him.
It’s that time of the year again when people go to places with cooler weather. Others choose to brave the heat and volunteer their time cleaning and preparing public schools for the coming school year. This yearly activity is called Brigada Eskwela.
Being a Brigada Eskwela volunteer means sweeping, dusting and wiping floors, windows, ceilings, and whatever surface there is. For the few days that you are part of a school’s Brigada Eskwela volunteer corps, you will do everything and anything with nary a complaint.
If you don’t know of a school looking for volunteers for its Brigada Eskwela project this summer, message me and I will get you in touch with school principals who are looking for able-bodied volunteers.
If going places is your passion, volunteering in the places you go visit will certainly enhance that experience.
Travelling becomes much more meaningful and worthwhile when it is spent enhancing our knowledge on how other people, cultures are. A growing trend is the “travel with a cause” where solo or group travellers go someplace to volunteer their time and expertise.
With the Typhoon Yolanda-affected areas still recovering from the devastation, kind-hearted Filipinos and foreigners have been organizing their vacation with the goal of helping the survivors recover. Maybe you and your friends may want to support the Yolanda survivors by going to the affected areas and physically help in the rebuilding process, say, by collecting and delivering books to public libraries.
Create Your Own
Now if the existing plethora of volunteer activities and groups don’t float your boat, don’t worry you can still volunteer by creating your own activity.
You only need to look at the needs of the less fortunate in your neighborhood, and then assess your skills and capabilities. For example, are there a lot of children who are below school age in your area? Why not create a regular reading group? You can partner with your neighborhood religious group in organizing this activity.
If reading to kids is not your thing, then why not organize a group to collect donations for care packages and deliver them to orphanages, halfway houses, etc.?
Truly when a person wants to do something worthwhile for others, only our imagination is the limit to what we can do.
As an opinion writer, I tend to shoot of my mouth with ideas on how the government and so and so elected official should do this and do that. This after all is the heart and soul of being an opinion writer. But an opinion writer who is so detached from reality is someone who is as dangerous to the society as a corrupt politician. To ground myself to the reality of the Filipino masses, I go out and volunteer. By immersing myself to what is happening on the streets, in the boondocks, I hope that my opinions are with soul.
The Gerry Roxas Foundation & Gerry Roxas Leadership Awardees, Inc. invite you to the Leader’s Forum on May 24 3PM at Balay, Araneta Center. GRLAs Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte and DILG Usec Austere A. Panadero will speak on leadership & nation building. The Leader’s Forum is part of GRF’s year-long celebration for its 55th anniversary.
To confirm your attendance, text your complete name, high school & year of graduation to Jose Francisco “Cholo” Kawada at 0917-8824656.
Liza fancies herself a writer, but what she wants to do is to actually spend all her time reading what others have written. In the meantime volunteers her time for the Gerry Roxas Leadership Awardees, Inc. and Rotary Club of Makati McKinley’s charitable activities. Visit her Web site at thegirlninja.com, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or engage her at http://www.facebook.com/annalizagaspar.
In The Future, People Will Bring Pot To Dinner Parties Instead Of Wine
If the support for marijuana legalization continues to rise, in the near future you might bring a bag of your favorite cannabis to a dinner party, rather than a bottle of wine.
That’s according to a new study from online legal resource Avvo, which found that 70 percent of the more than 2,000 consumers surveyed in Colorado and Washington — where marijuana has been legalized for recreational use — believe that marijuana consumption will become such a routine part of their lives that they’ll bring it along to something as regular as a dinner party.
The survey — which only included people who used Avvo.com in the past year — found that a strong majority of residents in Colorado and Washington are in support of legal weed businesses opening up in their neighborhoods. Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed in Colorado and 71 percent of those in Washington said they were in favor, with 43 percent planning on making a marijuana purchase in the future.
There was some concern from residents in both states that legalization could increase access to marijuana for kids, with 43 percent saying they were “very worried” about this notion. Forty-two percent of those surveyed where “very concerned” about the possibility of more people driving under the influence of marijuana.
The poll echoes similar positive sentiments from a recent survey from Public Policy Polling, which showed that Colorado voters are even happier about marijuana legalization after the first few months of sales.
Marijuana enthusiasts bought a lot of pot in the first month that recreational weed was legal in Colorado — several dozen recreational marijuana dispensaries collectively generated more than $14 million in January.
Just this month, Washington state regulators issued the first legal marijuana business license in the state. The first Washington shops selling retail weed are expected to open later this year.
“As the growing number of states with marijuana-legalization ballot initiatives indicates, pot is gaining social acceptance across a wide swath of demographics, even with shared concerns about kids having great access to the drug,” Leigh McMillan, vice president of marketing and research at Avvo, said in a statement. “Somewhat akin to the social movement after the end of prohibition, legalized marijuana will likely follow a similar trajectory as cannabis becomes socially accepted and new businesses emerge.”
Currently, 20 states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana in some form, with about a dozen other states expected to join their ranks in the coming years. (Matt Ferner/Huffpost)