Sunday, February 14, 2010

Doing Good Badly

Doing Good Badly

This is a very timely, very spot-on article on the reality of relief efforts in disaster areas such as Haiti. It confirms what I believed all along: those barongs, stuffed toys, swimsuits, and expired noodles have no place in our donation boxes.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


From Blogger Pictures
The cure for traffic

I'm thinking of hiring Gibo's web team.
Love the site! The green/gold theme is very eye-friendly, and I'm sure it alludes to his La Salle roots.All his video and TVCs (which have improved tremendously with the the pilot metaphors) are on the banner, and his views on virtually all issues are arranged very systematically, like a wiki.

Being an educator, I immediately scrolled to the "Education" section, and found two subsections--"student loan programs" and "preparing our children". When I clicked the "loans" part, I expected to find a treatise, but instead, I found this (quoted from the site):

Student Loan Program

Exhaust all means to give everyone the proper college education--Aside from usual scholarships and state subsidies, creative solutions should also be implemented to give every Filipino the education that is rightfully his.

One specific example for this is a loan system for the less fortunate, but deserving students in the tertiary level. When a student applies for a loan, he will be given a Social Security System (SSS) number. Immediately after he gets his first paycheck, it will register that he is getting a salary and subsequent deductions could be made.

Fiscally, I don't know if that makes sense. There should be infallible stats on student scholars who actually become employed, and thus are given SSS numbers. Does this also apply to graduates who go abroad immediately after receiving their diplomas? I have tons of questions, but I find the idea interesting, something that our country's economists and education experts can do some serious pencil-pushing on.

The other proposal, to add two years of elementary education, is BS, if you ask me. Parents in private schools are already scraping the bottom of their savings barrels just to pay their kids' tuition fees for 6 years of elementary schooling. Another two years will set them back, well, two years, and I'm afraid that in the good intentions of beefing up grade school quality, we might end up with high school dropouts on their 3rd or fourth year of high school. So I don't go with Gibo on that part.

Ok, back to the website: one more cool thing about it is a microsite called So far it's got some youtube videos where Gibo discusses solutions to national problems, i.e. traffic. This, and the whole site, is very youth-friendly, I would say, because text is kept at a minimum, while videos carry much of the candidate's message. Clearly, his niche is the educated sector of Philippine society, with his metaphors and flawless English. I can dig that, but can the kariton-pushing masses?

On the basis of his website, Gibo's got the edge. Personally, he's a presidential candidate who's worth following more. Yup, I just became his facebook fan.