with apologies to the Heckler………….

Humor is the most engaging cowardice.

………… Robert Frost

The kidnappers of three workers of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have to organize themselves into a cooperative before they can be granted livelihood assistance and development programs, Sulu Gov. Abdusakur Tan said yesterday. A lawyer that he is, FG is now busy organizing a cooperative, together with Mikey and Dato, with GMA as honorary chairman. FG was heard saying, “now we can declare our incomes from the fertilizer scam, ZTE bribes, Diosdado Macapagal Avenue overprice, and WB SOP legally.”

“We are willing to give them what they want, such as livelihood assistance, but they should be organized,” Sulu Gov. Abdusakur Tan told the Philippine Daily Inquirer by phone. “They should form a cooperative and then have it registered. They should also attend training [sessions] and seminars after doing that.” Hearing this, Joc Joc Bolante asked the Senate to drop the fertilizer scam investigation because he is inviting the senators as members of his newly formed cooperative to be known as “Bayan ang Nag-ABONO Cooperative.”

This was a turnaround from the governor’s earlier tough stance, when he described the kidnappers’ request for livelihood assistance as “equal to, or even more than, a ransom demand.” Now FG and GMA can ask the World Bank and the ZTE the same equal to, or even more than, tong-pats demand.”

Last week, Sulu Vice Gov. Nur Anna Sahidulla said the kidnappers of Andreas Notter of Switzerland, Eugenio Vagni of Italy and Mary Jean Lacaba of the Philippines wanted livelihood assistance, and not money, in exchange for the captives’ freedom. Because FG can no longer practice law after GMA’s watch due to coronary condition, he wanted livelihood assistance as well. He is appealing to the Senate to be generous and understanding. “Sana maintindihan nila ako. Baka mangyarin rin sa kanila pagdating ng araw,” FG was heard by Mon Tulfo as saying.

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CEBU City Regional Trial Court (RTC) Judge Gabriel Ingles declined anew an honorarium, this time from the local government unit (LGU) of Pinamungahan town, southern Cebu. In a letter addressed to Pinamungahan town Mayor Geraldine Yapha, Ingles thanked the town for the offer of a yearly honorarium of P18,000 but explained that because he wanted to be consistent with his stand on judicial independence, he would not accept it. RTC judges from the City of Makati are now poised to filing an administrative charge against Judge Ingles and vowed to throw the book on the Cebuano magistrate a couple of them was for” infidelity of local funds and technical malversation.”

Because of the generous local assistance from the City Government of Makati, the Makati judges are now forming a core group now known as “Barya mo I-BINAY mo!.” One goal this crowd is pushing is to make Binay’s policy of monthly honorarium extended to CA and SC justices.

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The projected Lakas-Kampi merger has triggered a political party name game of how the union will be called. Pro-administration parties Lakas-CMD and Kabalikat ng Malayang Pilipino (Kampi) are already thinking of a new name for their merged party ahead of the 2010 elections. Kampi spokesman Sorsogon Rep. Jose Solis said the name should be representative of the two parties’ values and goals, memorable and catchy enough for instant recall. Ex-Congressmen Butch PIchay and Jing Paras suggested MGA PILIPINONG MALALAKAS PUMATONG, MALAKAS MAGKIBIT-BALIKAT SA KAPALARAN NG PILIPINO, at MALAYANG PANGANGAMKAM NG PAMPANGA AT ILONGGO.

If his health permits, First Gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo may attend the Senate investigation into the World Bank (WB) exposé of contractors and political personalities involved in the alleged rigging of bids for government projects. Miriam Santiago, this time, wants to convene the Senate Committee on Health and threaten to sue FG’s St. Luke’s doctor of perjury. JPE, on the other hand wants the Justice committee convoked to quiz FG’s lawyer. Lito Lapid insists that his Committee, Games and Amusement, should arrest Ephraim Genuino for introducing a new variance of Cuarta o Cajon?, “Darating Ba o Hindi?”

The First Gentleman was linked by Sen. Panfilo Lacson to one of the contractors blacklisted by the WB for “collusive practices” with officials in the bidding for WB-funded government projects. Lacson said Eduardo de Luna, president of the blacklisted E.C. de Luna Construction Corp., met with the First Gentleman at least 20 times in 2002. Speaker Boy Nograles meets Celso de los Angeles almost nightly since 1995 and nobody bothers.

There is now a spate of forming cooperatives (obviously, heeding the advice of Sulu Gov. Abdusakur Tan to the ICRC workers’ kidnappers) among high-profile personalities: the DOJ’s John Resado, USEC Blancaflor, and State Prosecutor Zuno ; the Alabang Boys; Joc-Joc and FG; Ex-Cong. Pichay, Jing Paras and the Barbers Family; and Ex-Justice Vicente Roxas with Francis de Borja. With these new developments, the WB is expected to lift RP’s distinction as the most corrupt country in Asia. It’s not true that they named their ventures as KUUH-PERA-TIBA-TIBA.

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