Punchline

Wrong slogan for LI-FE

By Ermin Garcia Jr.

THERE is something that bothers me about the campaign slogan of the Lim-Fernandez tandem for the 2019 elections in Dagupan City -LIFE IS MAGIC!

The coined phrase LIFE IS MAGIC sounds cutesy. But“Magic”? VM Brian’s family owns Magic Group of companies. Is VM Brian suggesting that governance under him will be like business, where governance is transactional? Like it was when his father was the mayor?  “Magic” as in making things disappear?

In fact, I wonder how VM Brian is reacting to the move of the city government to collect the return of P16M+ that his father, thenMayor BSL transacted for the purchase of the 30-hectare land in San Jacinto by his administration ostensibly to be used as sanitary landfill.

VM Brian is quiet as a mouse.  Curiously, why hasn’t VM Brian taken the opportunity to show that his magic works by helping the city collect the P16M+from Jose Cuña? That could be his first impressive accomplishment for the city.

But will he? Can Alfie prod his partner to perform the magic if only to give a new meaning to their slogan LIFE IS MAGIC, that governance under him will, indeed, be magical and beneficial for the city?

This we gotta see. Until then, LIFE IS MAGIC will remain an empty slogan that voters must be wary of. Ano ang ma-magic-kin na naman under another Lim administration?

Will it be another set of street lights? A second-hand dredging machine? Another tsunami hill? Another sanitary landfill deal? Anothe rschool transfer deal? Another public market building? Another hotel sale? Another beachfront sale? Another river cruise project? Another potential land-grabbing in Bonuan? Another 25-year land lease deal for a mall?

Those were very “magical years” and I kid you not whenI say I wanted to puke each time I learned of each one. So if VM Brian thinks the slogan LIFE IS MAGIC will work wonders without meaning it, he’s got it all wrong. He just reminded us how a Lim’s brand of magical governance almost led the city to bankruptcy. The city cannot afford to forget how magic worked in the past.

Another campaign cute slogan for LIFE please! Try LIFE IS NOT FAIR!

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FRANCIS’ EXPERIENCE. Over the last few months, I have noted with serious concern the increased activities of the members of the Makabayan bloc: Bayan Muna, Alliance of Concerned Teachers, Anakpawis, Gabriela, Kabataan, Migrante and Courage, recruiting new members.

However, I am not certain if these have anything to do with the suspended peace talks. Out here in Pangasinan, there appears no felt recruitment activities except perhaps among Bayan Muna, ACT and Kabataan. But let’s hope there’s nothing sinister about it and that should concern us that could disrupt our peace and order and security.

But be that as it may, there’s more about recruitment and its consequences by these groups that are largely unknown to the public,particularly to families with children studying in colleges and universities. I have long wondered about it. 

It was for this reason I was glad I chanced upon Dagupeño FrancisFernandez thoughts (off topic) on October 8 (via Metro Dagupan ICTCommunity Facebook) citing his own experiences and activities with the left-wing Makabayan bloc in the country.  It was what I’ve been searching for – a first-hand engagement of someone  I know personally.

Parents and college students out there, I bid you to read, and heed his call.  His thoughts:

“In my activist days, groups like the League of Filipino Students (LFS), National Union ofStudents in the Philippines (NUSP), and even College Editors Guild of thePhilippines (CEGP) are very active in sharing leftist ideologies and sow dissatisfaction against the current system to the point that some students embrace the idea that the only way for ‘better’ change is through armed struggle. 

“I have lost many friends who are now desaparecidos (involuntary disappeared) in my law days before in UP and is this the future that the Communists want for our youths to be used as pawns in their puny war against our established government? 

No to Communist indoctrination and recruitment! Prepare for this group’s 50th Founding Anniversary to sow chaos and terror. May the AFP and PNP protect us.”

I do hope his experience would be enough to warn students and their parents of perils beyond the excitement of joining protest groups.

Thank you Francis for this enlightenment. 

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TRIVIA ON BEMEDALED MARINE. During a casual conversation with retired Marine Col. Ariel Querubin last Thursday, I found out one important trivia that has escaped Dagupeños.

To refresh everyone’s memory, then Lt. Col. Querubin, bemedaled commander of the 1st MarineBrigade, was presented the military’s highest honor in 2002 for most exemplary heroism and sacrifice displayed in combat — the Medal of Honor.  Why? He led a Marine battalion landing team that assaulted an estimated 300-strong, fully armed band of Moro IslamicLiberation Front (MILF) rebels in Lanao del Norte and engaged them in a 24-hour gun battle from March 18 to 19, 2000.  Outnumbered, facing heavy artillery fire, he and his men captured Camp John Mack, the MILF’s most strategic staging area for operations.

And In 2006, he led a 7-hour stand-off inside the marine headquarters in Fort Bonifacio to protest the relief of his commandant, Maj. Gen. Renato Miranda. Querubin and Miranda were joining the protest against the Arroyo administration.  The issue was about reported attempt of the Arroyo camp to rig the elections.

He was charged for mutiny, and was given presidential amnesty by President PNoy in2010.

On the same year, while in detention, he decided to ran for a seat in the senate but lost.

So, what’s the trivia?  He was born in Dagupan City on March 28, 1956!His father, Benjamin Bello Querubin was a former provincial assistant treasurer of Pangasinan in the 50’s.

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CONSISTENT OBSTRUCTIONISTS. I am truly amazed by the consistency of the anti-DU30 forces in attempting to block, obstruct and demonize all initiatives of the government today.

In plain words,the LPs, the left-leaning groups and the clergy refuse to see changes that will expose previous and past governments as corrupt, inept and devoid of any constructive visions for the country.

When the government decided to close Boracay to tourists for six months, the gang peddled an outrageous story that it was meant as a cover-up for a planned casino in the island. Apparently, they had to throw everything including the kitchen sink because past deals of accommodations in violation of laws would be unearthed. And the closure did just that.

After six months, no casino was found in the island, violators were charged, illegal structures were demolished, the peddlers of cover-up stories conveniently lost their voices.

Now comes the proposed PH-CH oil exploration deal. Like seasoned magicians, Messrs. Trillanes and media allies pulled out a document written in Chinese that purportedly lists the unfavorable sharing of revenues agreed upon in favor of China. Sinceno one read the Chinese manuscript that they quickly hid after a press conference, which could have been a new recipe for chicken feet, they refused to give any more details after failing to further embarrass our government before the Chinese president who was here on a two-day state visit.

And when the regional court gave its verdict that the policemen involved in the killing of student Kian delos Santos, effectively debunking extra-judicial killing as a government policy, the LPs spin masters were quick to charge that they will be pardoned by PDU30. Again, the spin fell flat on its face when PDU30 said the case of the police was clearly murder and convicted murderers cannot qualify for pardon. Stone silence again.

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