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Terrorist threat remains real – UN

The threat of terrorism remains real and even direct for many countries, the United Nations counterterrorism chief warned yesterday......»»

Category: newsSource: philstar philstarJan 14th, 2021

Frameworks for the future

As parts of the nation emerge from the Enhanced Community Quarantine regime and into the less stringent General Community Quarantine arrangement, both the government and ordinary citizens are finding ways to recalibrate our daily routines to encompass our needs for communal life and work in a world where COVID-19 remains a real threat to ourselves and our loved ones......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsMay 12th, 2020

UN: Threat from terror groups acute,widespread

The threat from Islamic State, al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups remains acute and widespread, according to the head of the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Office......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 22nd, 2019

UAAP Season 81 Final Four: It’s a test of character -- Ateneo s Almadro

Even after dominating Far Eastern University in the elimination round and earning a twice-to-beat advantage in the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball Final Four, Ateneo de Manila University is not taking the Lady Tamaraws lightly. For head coach Oliver Almadro, FEU remains a big threat in the Lady Eagles’ desire to return to the championship round after seeing their six-year Finals stint snapped last year against the same opponent.      Saturday’s semifinals match will be a litmus test for the Lady Eagles, who are looking to return the favor to their last season’s semis tormentors. “It’s a test of character for the team,” said Almadro, who replaced Thai mentor Tai Bundit. Ateneo took the no. 1 seed after closing the elims with a 12-2 win-loss record – those two defeats coming at the hands of three-time defending champion De La Salle University – and set up a third straight Final Four date with the Lady Tamaraws. “Last year, sila ang magkatapat sa semis. It’s time to show our character. We have a chance to show our real character. We have to work hard and play hard to be back in the Finals,” said Almadro, who before taking over the Lady Eagles’ coaching duty brought the Blue Eagles to five straight championship appearance laced with a three-peat.   With a line-up led by graduating players in Bea De Leon and Maddie Madayag out to bring the glory back to Katipunan in their swan songs, and solid support coming from Kat Tolentino, Ponggay Gaston and setter Deanna Wong, the Lady Eagles are primed to make it to the Finals. Add their elims sweep of the Lady Tams and semis advantage, the odds are in favor of Ateneo. But Almdaro is not discounting FEU, besides, the core of last year’s runner-up Lady Tams remains intact. “FEU is really a good team considering ‘yung winning tradition nila,” he said. “We have to respect them. We acknowledge what they can do.” Ateneo may have the numbers of FEU in their first two meetings, but the semis is a different story.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 3rd, 2019

Match-fixing back in spotlight on eve of first Grand Slam

JUSTIN BERGMAN, Associated Press   For Rafael Nadal and the other stars of tennis, there's a familiar ring to the questions being raised as the first ball is about to be struck at the Australian Open. Recent match-fixing sanctions and a new case are bringing fresh scrutiny to the integrity of the sport a year after corruption allegations cast a pall over the first Grand Slam of the year. '(It's) obviously negative, always in the first month of the season starts to happen,' Nadal said at the season-opening Brisbane International. 'You get tired about this kind of stuff, but the most important thing is fight against these kinds of things.' The headlines started appearing early in the new year. On Jan. 5, police in Australia charged an 18-year-old player with a match-fixing offense at a lower-tier tournament last October in Traralgon, near Melbourne. Days later, another Australian player, Nick Lindahl, now retired but once ranked in the top 200, was handed a seven-year ban and $35,000 fine from the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) for offering to throw a match at a minor tournament in the city of Toowoomba in 2013. Lindahl had already been fined after a criminal trial. Two other Australian players received lesser punishments in connection with the incident. While Traralgon and Toowoomba are far removed from the glittering lights of Melbourne Park, the timing of the developments was troubling nonetheless. Last season began similarly beneath a cloud of suspicion after a report by BBC and Buzzfeed alleged that tennis authorities had suppressed evidence of match-fixing and failed to investigate possible cases of corruption. The reports went over old ground, but the timing and the headlines overshadowed the tournament. 'I haven't heard anything (about match-fixing) since last year's Australian Open,' German player Mischa Zverev told The Associated Press last week in Brisbane. 'I think it was funny timing. ... Like the day before the Oscars, they're going to bring something up to make somebody not win it, or win it.' Since then, tennis leaders have gone into overdrive to restore confidence in the sport. An independent panel was created to review the TIU, the internal body tasked with combating corruption, and authorities promised to implement all of its recommendations when it is completed this spring. The TIU also took separate steps to strengthen its monitoring and investigation efforts, develop new anti-corruption education programs for players, and improve the transparency of its operations. In an email statement to The AP, the agency said nine players and officials were sanctioned last year for match-fixing — the most for a single year since the unit was established in 2008. Several were banned for life, including a young South African player and four officials from Turkey and Uzbekistan. The unit also expanded its outreach efforts with betting operators and regulators, leading to increased reporting of suspicious wagers. In 2016, the TIU received 292 betting alerts — an 18 percent increase over the previous year. The vast majority of those came from the Challenger and Futures circuits on the men's tour, considered the most at-risk for match-fixing given the lower likelihood of detection and the smaller earnings of the players. However, the TIU said three alerts were generated at Grand Slam events, as well. The agency was quick to note, though, that an alert isn't necessarily proof of match-fixing. Of the more than 114,000 matches played last year on the professional tours, only 0.2 percent triggered a suspicious betting alert. 'Tennis was one of the first major sports to recognize the potential threat of betting-related corruption and do something about it,' the TIU said. 'It will be for the independent review panel to take a view on the conduct and effectiveness of the unit and to put forward recommendations to improve the current structure and approach.' Whatever the investigators recommend, the fact remains the TIU faces an uphill battle. Technology has shifted the gambling landscape in such a way, it's increasingly difficult for monitors to keep up. In tennis, wagers aren't just placed on who wins or loses; bets can be placed during matches in real time on everything from total points won in a game to whether a set goes to a tiebreak. 'We're talking individual player activities here,' said Hans Westerbeek, dean of the College of Sport and Exercise Science at Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia. 'It's much easier to get into a situation where you approach individual players to do things that can be, if done well, quite well hidden from it being suspicious.' He likens it to the ongoing battle against performance-enhancing drugs. 'You're always struggling to keep up with the innovations that a better-resourced front of gambling operators, legal or illegal, will have available to advance their technology.' Ryan Rodenberg, an associate professor of forensic sports law analytics at Florida State University, says this is one reason a more sophisticated approach is critically needed. He recommends an internal monitoring system that analyzes each match for suspicious activity in real time, rather than relying solely on betting alerts. 'A robust betting data-monitoring operation would have both in-house capabilities and a number of collaborative information sharing agreements with third parties such as sportsbooks, private monitoring firms or academics,' he said. 'Anything less is sub-optimal.' With a limited budget of just $3.23 million for 2017, however, there is only so much the TIU can do. As such, preventative measures such as education have become a priority. More than 25,000 players and officials have completed the TIU's online anti-corruption training program, and a new version will be launched that players will be required to complete every two years. 'Educating players who are up-and-coming and those who support those players is a very good, positive and necessary thing to do,' Westerbeek says. 'Because the root of the problem is ... people not really (understanding) they're engaging in criminal activity.' ___ AP Sports Writer John Pye contributed to this report. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 13th, 2017

The real threat to us is communist China

They say the University of the Philippines is a hotbed of radicalism......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 22nd, 2021

Dealing with the New Normal Healthy Lifestyle

As months pile up and the COVID-19 pandemic still remains a threat, people have no choice but to make lifestyle adaptions to deal with it and health is of top priority. According to NPC Dr. Parolita A. Mission, with the new strain of the virus, which experts fear is more contagious, we should be more […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  metrocebuRelated NewsJan 20th, 2021

Cebu City Among Top Property Hubs in 2020

The Queen City of the South remains as one of the top property hotspots in the country in 2020, according to real estate marketplace Lamudi. In their report “Hotspots Unwrapped: 2020’s Most Popular Locations,” Cebu remained the top property hotspot outside Metro Manila, garnering and interest from site viewers at 26.56 percent, mostly renters. “Cebu […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  metrocebuRelated NewsJan 14th, 2021

British judge won& rsquo;t extradite Assange to US to face judgment

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange dodged a bullet Monday when a British judge refused to extradite him to the United States to face charges under an espionage law, but experts say his case remains an ominous threat to press freedom......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsJan 5th, 2021

BSP tells banks to maintain guard vs money laundering

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas has directed banks and financial institutions to maintain a robust money laundering and terrorist financing risk management framework amid the rising threat of online sexual exploitation of children and related crimes......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsDec 17th, 2020

Real Estate Firm Underscores Sustainability as Key to Cebu’s Economic Recovery

Months after the threat of being the country’s COVID-19 epicenter in June, Cebu City is now gradually resuming its normal operations following the period of being under the strictest quarantine measures. With the city government allowing the return in operations of over 1,300 traditional jeepneys last November 3 and the Department of Health announcing that […].....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 1st, 2020

Hongkong Land remains confident in the real estate market of the Philippines

Hongkong Land is committed to our promises of building lasting value and bringing world-class development to the Philippines, as the company envisions communities that will enhance the environment, champion local passions, and power economic growth.  Mr. Tan Wee Hsien, Director and Head of Development Property of Hongkong Land, South Asia, said, “With the Philippines being one of the fastest […] The post Hongkong Land remains confident in the real estate market of the Philippines appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsNov 5th, 2020

US votes on Trump’s fate under threat of election turmoil

WASHINGTON (AFP) – Americans vote Tuesday in an election amounting to a referendum on Donald Trump and his uniquely brash, bruising presidency that Democratic opponent and frontrunner Joe Biden urged supporters to end, restoring “our democracy.” US President Donald Trump leaves after speaking during a Make America Great Again rally at Fayetteville Regional Airport November 2, 2020, in Fayetteville, North Carolina. – The US presidential campaign enters its final day Monday with a last-minute scramble for votes by Donald Trump and Joe Biden, drawing to a close an extraordinary race that has put a pandemic-stricken country on edge. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP) The United States is more divided and angry than at any time since the Vietnam War era of the 1970s — and fears that Trump could dispute the result of the election are only fueling those tensions. Despite an often startlingly laid-back campaign, Biden, 77, leads in almost every opinion poll, buoyed by his consistent message that America needs to restore its “soul” and get new leadership in the midst of a coronavirus pandemic that has killed more than 231,000 people. “I have a feeling we’re coming together for a big win tomorrow,” Biden said in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a vital electoral battleground where he was joined by pop superstar Lady Gaga. “It’s time to stand up and take back our democracy.” But Trump was characteristically defiant to the end, campaigning at a frenetic pace with crowded rallies in four states on Monday, and repeating his dark, unprecedented claims for a US president that the polls risk being rigged against him. After almost non-stop speeches in a final three-day sprint, he ended up in the early hours of Tuesday in Grand Rapids, Michigan — the same place where he concluded his epic against-the-odds campaign in 2016 where he defeated apparent frontrunner Hillary Clinton. Despite the bad poll numbers, the 74-year-old Republican real estate tycoon counted on pulling off another upset. “We’re going to have another beautiful victory tomorrow,” he told the Michigan crowd, which chanted back: “We love you, we love you!” “We’re going to make history once again,” he said. Packing Trump’s bags While Tuesday is formally Election Day, in reality Americans have been voting for weeks. With a huge expansion in mail-in voting to safeguard against the Covid-19 pandemic, nearly 100 million people have already made their choice. Biden has the wind in his sails after indications that Democratic enthusiasm in the early voting may be matching the more visible energy at Trump’s impressive rallies. In one of US history’s great political gambles, Biden stuck to socially distanced gatherings with small crowds right up to the last moment, in stunning contrast to Trump’s constant, large rallies where few supporters so much as bothered with masks. But the Democrat, making his third attempt at the presidency, clearly senses that his calmer approach and strict attention to pandemic protocols is what Americans want after four tempestuous years. “It’s time for Donald Trump to pack his bags and go home,” Biden told supporters in Cleveland. “We’re done with the chaos! We’re done with the tweets, the anger, the hate, the failure, the irresponsibility.” In chilly downtown Pittsburgh, Justine Wolff said she had cast her ballot for Biden already and was cautiously hopeful he would carry Pennsylvania, which along with Florida may be the tightest of all the swing states that decide close national elections. “I hope that people have seen the writing on the wall,” said the 35-year-old nurse. “We need some kind of change because this isn’t working for anybody.” But where many early votes are believed to have been cast by Democrats, Trump’s side is hoping for a massive wave of Republican supporters voting in person on Tuesday. “Whether he wins or loses, this is history,” said Kolleen Wall, who turned out to cheer Trump in Grand Rapids. But “when you come to one of these rallies, all you think is, how could he not win?” The first polling stations opening were in two New Hampshire villages, Dixville Notch and Millsfield, starting at midnight. Most polling stations on the East Coast were to open at 6:00 am or 7:00 am (1100 or 1200 GMT). A tiny hamlet of 12 residents in the middle of the forest, near the Canadian border, Dixville Notch has traditionally voted “first in the nation” since 1960. The vote took minutes, as did the count: five votes for Biden, and none for Trump. Warning of violence Trump himself is planning to visit his campaign headquarters in Virginia on Tuesday, while Biden will travel to his birthplace of Scranton, the scrappy Pennsylvania town where Trump also visited on Monday. There are worries that if the election is close, extended legal chaos and perhaps violent unrest could ensue — not least because Trump has spent months trying to sap public trust in the voting process in a nation already bitterly divided along political fault lines. He ramped up these warnings in the final days, focusing especially on Pennsylvania’s rule allowing absentee ballots received within three days after Tuesday to be counted. In a tweet flagged with a warning label by Twitter on Monday, he said this would “allow rampant and unchecked cheating.” “It will also induce violence in the streets. Something must be done!” Trump tweeted......»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsNov 3rd, 2020

Labella urge Cebu City residents to skip countryside travels for now

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The threat of the coronavirus disease remains even while Cebu City and the rest of Cebu province is now under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ). To avoid the risk of the infection, Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella said it is best for Cebuanos to stay at home. Labella also discourages any […] The post Labella urge Cebu City residents to skip countryside travels for now appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsSep 15th, 2020

SUPER SHOWDOWN: La Salle Paraiso vs UST Paraiso

Brent Paraiso made his name as a determined defender during his days in De La Salle Zobel. He rode that effort and energy all the way to a spot on the fully loaded lineup for De La Salle University in UAAP 79. Not only that, the 6-foot-2 swingman actually started five games for the Green Archers in their dominant 16-1 title run. Paraiso's norms were not necessarily eye-opening, but he contributed nonetheless to a championship - especially to a defense predicated on "mayhem." The year after, he yet again started five games as they wound up as runners-up. From there, however, the La Salle lifer decided to take his talents somewhere else - University of Sto. Tomas, to be exact. And in his first year as a Growling Tiger, he showed off a more well-rounded game, averaging 7.2 points and totaling 28 threes. The numbers were higher, without a doubt, but he also became less of an enforcer in black and gold. Meaning, the Brent Paraiso of now is not necessarily the Brent Paraiso of before - a fiery competitor that got under the skin of opponents all while getting his teammates going. Do you miss that old Brent? Or do you like the new Brent better? That is what we weigh against each other in this week's ABS-CBN Sports Super Showdown. To figure out who comes out on top between the old Brent and the new Brent, we will be judging them in five categories (shooting, finishing, defense, role, and attitude) with a boxing-style 10-point must system determining the decision. SHOOTING The new Brent is well on his way to becoming a 3-and-D guy. Paraiso made good on a respectable 32.6 percent of his 86 shots from downtown. For reference, he only attempted 11 triples in his two years in La Salle and only converted one of them. Of course, more minutes meant more openings for him to put up shots, but there is still no doubt that his stroke is now surer. Advantage, UST Paraiso 10-8 FINISHING Paraiso has never been known as a shot-creator. In black and gold, however, he has become more confident with his ballhandling. With that, the new Brent no longer settles for jump shots and could slice and dice his way to the ring if he wants to. Once inside, he prefers floaters and still has work to do in terms of taking it up strong. Still, this is an improvement from his days in La Salle when he was more of just a catch-and-shoot threat. Advantage, UST Paraiso 10-9 DEFENSE Quick feet and active hands have always been there for Paraiso. And in UST, he has coupled those with wisdom coming from age and experience. Still, the new Brent could not come close to the old Brent in terms of sticking to his man and standing his ground. That Paraiso was only third to Ben Mbala and Kib Montalbo in energizing La Salle's "mayhem." While his steal counts were never up there, but head coach Aldin Ayo always knew full well he could count on his youthful workhorse to do his best against an opposing team's weapon. Advantage, La Salle Paraiso 10-9 ROLE Starting games has been one of Paraiso's roles since his rookie season. From being a quality minutes guy in La Salle, though, he is now a regular rotation piece in UST. The old Brent proved worthy of being a sparkplug for the Green Archers in their first- and second-place finishes. As a Growling Tiger, however, he also proved he could be much more than that as they made it all the way to the Finals. Now, the new Brent is somebody who could impact the game on offense just as much as he could do so on defense. Advantage, UST Paraiso 10-9 ATTITUDE The old Brent is the classic played you would love on your side and you would hate on the other. The new Brent is no longer like that as he has matured and just puts his full focus on his role for UST. For out taste, though, Paraiso the enforcer remains a player to remember - much more than the more well-rounded player now in black and gold. Advantage, La Salle Paraiso 10-9 FINAL: 48-46 for UST Paraiso --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 20th, 2020

SUPER SHOWDOWN: San Beda-Adamos-Perps Adamos

As it stands today, Ben Adamos is one of the best young big men in the Philippines. The 6-foot-6 center was a double-double machine in his first season for University of Perpetual Help. Posting per game counts of 11.6 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 1.1 assists he stood as the pillar of the Altas’ challenging, yet still competitive campaign. Even before his transfer to Las Pinas, however, Adamos was already standing strong. In particular, his first year in San Beda University had him functioning as the modern big man in head coach Jamike Jarin's modern game plan. Starting 13 games and providing a big boost off the bench in the 10 others, he averaged 5.9 points and 3.3 rebounds as the Red Lions reclaimed the throne. Unfortunately, a year later, he got lost in the shuffle in new mentor Boyet Fernandez's more deliberate offensive and defensive schemes. Fortunately, it didn’t take long for him to get a golden opportunity to take his talents elsewhere. Now, the 22-year-old is continuing to showcase his skills as a modern big man who has nothing but a high ceiling for the future of his young career. Which Ben Adamos is more impressive, though? The one who ran and gunned with San Beda? Or the one who makes a living inside and outside in Perps? The answer will be made known in this week's ABS-CBN Sports Super Showdown. To figure out who comes out on top between the two versions, we will be judging them in five categories (inside scoring, outside scoring, defense, consistency, and impact) with a boxing-style 10-point must system determining the decision. INSIDE SCORING With his size, Adamos always has an advantage at the rim. Where he differs from the usual bigs, however, is the versatility of his moves down low. Adamos could face up just as good as he could back down - he would not overpower his fellow bigs, but he has nifty footwork to get himself to a spot he likes. In Perpetual, though, he has improved his nose for the ball which puts him at the right place, at the right time as evidenced by his 2.8 offensive rebounds per game. For reference, he had 1.3 boards per game in his time in San Beda. Advantage, Perps Adamos 10-9 OUTSIDE SCORING   What makes a modern big man is a sweet stroke from outside the paint - and Adamos has just that. Be it from mid-range or long-range, he could take and make a shot. It was in San Beda where he showed off this shooting touch, serving as a stretch-4 or stretch-5 for their run-and-gun offense and totaling 12 triples and many, many long 2s as Dan Sara and Robert Bolick's pick-and-pop partner. Adamos still launches long-range missiles in Perpetual, 10 in total to be exact, but he is, more often than not, stationed at or near the paint. That means that the true modern big man - in terms of offense, at the very least - was what we saw in Adamos as a Red Lion. Advantage, San Beda Adamos 10-9 DEFENSE Adamos was never much of a paint protector in San Beda - he didn't have to be as they had Donald Tankoua and Arnaud Noah. When needed, however, he still proved to be up to the task and had averages of 1.4 blocks. Fast forward to his time in Perpetual and Adamos realized his potential at the defensive end as he averaged 1.9 blocks. He was firm at the rim, without a doubt, but could also keep up with wings and guards thanks to his quick feet. Of course, Adamos wasn't Prince Eze at that end, but he more than made up for his height and length difference with the Nigerian tower with a whole lot of effort and energy. Advantage, Perps Adamos 10-9 CONSISTENCY San Beda's championship winning machine has always operated through total team effort. That means that, yes, Adamos had more than a few good to great games in Season 92, but also had some games where he had to take a backseat to the likes of Robert Bolick, Javee Mocon, and Davon Potts. In Perps, though, he is the main man in the middle and is a double-double threat game in and game out. As Frankie Lim's starter all throughout the tournament, Adamos got together with Edgar Charcos as the inside-outside combination that made sure the Altas remained a tough out. Advantage, Perps Adamos 10-9 IMPACT Coach Jamike had tantalizing talents in Bolick, Mocon, Potts, and Tankoua, but it was modern big man Adamos who made sure they played new-age basketball. Capable and confident of scoring from all over, he was often the recipient and finisher of set-ups by Bolick and Dan Sara. Make no mistake, Adamos made an immediate impact in his first year in Perpetual and made sure they had a ready-made replacement for MVP Eze. His role in red and white under Jarin, however, remains his most perfect fit. Advantage, San Beda Adamos 10-9 FINAL: 48-47 for Perps Adamos.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 13th, 2020

Coach Franz wants Ahanmisi to get that Ritualo swagger for last year in Adamson

Jerrick Ahanmisi has been a shining star for each and every one of his last four years in Adamson University. Still, there remains something missing for him to be the superstar the Soaring Falcons know full well he could be. "Si Jerrick is too nice eh," coach Franz Pumaren answered when asked by fellow coaches Charles Tiu, Paolo Layug, and Anton Altramirano in Coaches Unfiltered about his prized ward. "He's so happy just being part of the team, pero he needs to be a bit cocky." In particular, the multi-titled mentor wants nothing more than to see Ahanmisi taking charge when it matters most for Adamson. "I think ang kailangan niyang i-improve e medyo maging selfish siya, maging assertive siya. Bottom line, down the stretch, he should, at least, ask for the ball," he said. In this light, Coach Franz is going out of his way to, indeed, put a bigger burden on the shoulders of his graduating guard. "When I say cocky, hindi naman ibig sabihin, yung mayabang, ibig sabihin, yung confident. Yun lang naman ang kulang sa kanya e, kailangan lang may konting yabang," he shared. He then continued, "That's one thing we've been trying to develop. Hopefully, this coming season, he'll be the captain ball of our team so more likely, he will start being more assertive." For the brilliant tactician, Ahanmisi actually has footsteps he could and should follow. "One thing I've been telling Jerrick, he should try to get the old games of Renren and watch it. Alam naman natin si Renren kung gaano kakapal ang mukha down the stretch," the former said. Renren Ritualo was the main man in Coach Franz's first few years as head coach and the key cog in De La Salle University's four-peat in that time. Just like Adamson's Filipino-American sharpshooter, he was a tremendous threat from all over halfcourt. All the same, though, Ritualo was a gunslinger who, time and again, came through in the clutch for the Green Archers. And that is exactly what Coach Franz wants to witness from Ahanmisi much, much more. "If you look at history, yung mga players na talagang nag-eexcel sa crunch time, yung sobrang cocky, sobrang confident eh. Ganun din dapat siya," he said. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 6th, 2020

Moderating oligarchs’ greed

Last July 13, President Rodrigo Duterte spoke before soldiers in Jolo, Sulu and triumphantly declared he “dismantled the oligarchy that controlled the country’s economy without the need to declare martial law.” This came a few days after a committee in the House of Representatives rejected ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal bill. During his penultimate State of the Nation Address on July 27, Duterte took another swipe at the oligarchs whose great wealth has enabled them “to influence public policy to their advantage.” He cited as an example the Lopezes “who used their media outlets in their battles with political figures” including himself during the 2016 elections. People seem to forget that Duterte’s avowed mission to put oligarchs in their proper place was part of his 2016 campaign promise to stamp out corruption. At that time, he said the corruption in the Bureau of Customs and the Bureau of Internal Revenue was “small change in comparison to the high-level corruption that runs in the billions among the economic elite.” Oligarchy means the rule of the few, but its meaning has evolved to refer to powerful individuals or groups outside of government who are able to benefit from political connections to amass vast amounts of wealth and gain control of major industries. The term “oligarch” started popping up recently in mainstream and social media but its context in relation to what is happening in our society has become warped and obfuscated. To be fair, the President has given credit where credit is due, even to the so-called oligarchs when they helped the government in this COVID-19 crisis, but he said it is their abuses that he abhors. On several occasions, House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano pointed out how oligarchs use their wealth to gain power, while the political elite used their power to amass wealth. He expressed full support to Duterte’s advocacy in changing the current system where he believes the people “willingly consent to being held back by the few who control the economy and through that, the running of the nation.” According to Cayetano, the real threat to the stability of our socio-political and economic systems are those backroom deals that make exploitation legal – “the quiet acquiescing to a system that naturally favors the ultra-rich and very powerful.” He believes that not all oligarchs are bad, saying in a media interview: “Just like every entrepreneur wanting to expand their business, these would-be oligarchs might very well have started off with the most benign or even benevolent intentions. But the malignant DNA of unabated, uncontrolled capitalism, especially corporate capitalism, eventually comes to play, leading to people and systems being abused and exploited.” Cayetano clarified, though, that capitalism and democracy work as we have seen in other economies. He thinks the situation in the Philippines is not hopeless, and we can begin to change this corrupt system by acknowledging there is a problem and we are part of it. “This is a battle between those who are willing to fight their self-interest and change with the system, versus those who deny that there is anything wrong with the status quo, specifically as it relates to themselves, and instead simply choose to blame the politicians and officials in government,” he said. This brings to mind the statement attributed to a Cabinet member of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo who advised another top official to “moderate your greed.” Another cautionary tale is found in the recently re-launched book of Ricardo Manapat, who served as National Archives Director during the Arroyo and Ramos administrations. Manapat’s book is titled “Some Are Smarter Than Others: The History of Marcos’ Crony Capitalism” which is a classic work on anti-cronyism exposing the ill-gotten wealth of former President Ferdinand Marcos. Oligarchs may not be totally wiped out in the Philippines, since developed economies even have to contend with their presence. But Duterte’s relentless campaign against them could very well result in moderating their greed and freeing the country from their tight grip. nextgenmedia@gmail.com.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 3rd, 2020

Did Russia fire missile in space?

WASHINGTON (AFP) — The United States accused Russia on Thursday of test-firing an anti-satellite weapon in space, warning that the threat against Washington’s systems was “real, serious and increasing.” US Space Command “has evidence” that Moscow “conducted a non-destructive test of a space-based anti-satellite weapon” on 15 July, it said in a statement. “Last week’s […] The post Did Russia fire missile in space? appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 25th, 2020

BI: Non-essential overseas trips resume

While the coronavirus disease remains a public threat, the government yesterday allowed the resumption of non-essential travel abroad subject to the guidelines of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJul 22nd, 2020

Tips for SMBs: What to do Before, During, and After a Ransomware Attack?

Over three years after the infamous Wannacry ransomware, its costly aftermath still remains a vivid glimpse on the damage cybercriminals can do by kidnapping companies’ essential data. This threat is undoubtedly present as just this month, operations of an automobile giant were halted in several parts of the world after a successful attack by another […].....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 3rd, 2020