Is the DPWH now a meme?

DPWH official photo

After Typhoon Pedring kicked Manila’s ass earlier this week, the Department of Public Works and Highways was quick to get out in the field and check damage to the sea wall along Roxas Boulevard. They were also apparently quick to fire up their Photoshop for a sloppily-done PR photo showing their officials at the site.

We cannot blame them, however. These are modern times, and sometimes pictures need to be touched up a little. The photo was, after all, supposed to show DPWH officials at work. One of them apparently did not get the memo and let his girlfriend tag along for a romantic date along Manila Bay.

Clearly, there was a breach of protocol

The DPWH was quick to pull down the picture once the public got wind of the attempt to cover up the affair, however, and the DPWH official has since broken things off with his girlfriend. The decision came after an emergency meeting at a DPWH secret base built during Martial Law, when then President Ferdinand Marcos feared a Chinese Communist takeover of the Philippines.

The DPWH base, since removed from all maps, was meant as a remote nerve center for the government should Malacanang ever fall. A source at the DPWH sent us this leaked photo of the meeting:

Also in picture: Ferdinand Marcos Clone 7562-A5

Indolent reader Abner sends us this dispatch from the frontlines:

War...War never changes...

Felicity Merriman gives our Public Works officials an unintentionally creepy vibe

Stranger danger!

[UPDATE: My God. I wish I could photoshop myself back in time. We saw the pic and had a photoshopped image ready a day before that other dude blogged about it. Ah, well. Nothing ventured, nothing at all. ]



Also, a fun exploitable photo for Indolent readers!

Come on! Vamanos, everybody! Let's go

Where will our Public Works officials turn up next? Send us your shopped pics at indolentry at indolentindio dot com or onetamad at indolentindio dot com!

(Thx, M and the Indolent Photoshop Department!)

Actually, Twitter Troll…

Twitter is a great tool for keeping tabs on your friends and on things that interest you. It is also a great tool for being a tool.

Like so:

Blacked out her name because she's clearly a minor whose identity should be protected. At least we hope she is a minor.

Now, the UP College Admission Test (UPCAT) is sort of a big deal for many high school seniors, and the pressure of getting in is too much for some people. Still, that is a weak excuse for indulging in some of the most ill-informed sour graping in the history of talking shit.

Actually, @N___________, Republic Act 9500 or the University of the Philippines Charter of 2008 says passing the UPCAT does mean UP students can use your taxes. So does Republic Act 10147 and probably every General Appropriations Act passed since UP became a state school. Shit, government subsidy to UP even predates the Republic probably. More than enough time for you to understand that state schools are paid for, in part, by taxes.

Unfortunately, for you, @N___________, “just because” people pass the UP Law Aptitude Exam or get into the UP College of Medicine will also mean they get to use your taxes.

She hates UP and runs over homosexuals. What a classy kid.

 Well, at least there’s that. Try not to drive through floods while doing that, though. You’re obviously even less informed than that other guy. And at least he got into UP.

Thx for the tip, Indolent friend Mrs. Dennis, Ang Taong Lobo!

Congress: Serious Business

This is why we can’t have nice things like a law authorizing the government to talk to women about contraception and reproductive rights.

Says Kabataan Rep. Mong Palatino: "It's an empty house, and it's only 6pm"


No wonder reporters on the House beat have resorted to intrigues and infighting. This place is so dead two hours after the session is supposed to start, they cannot be blamed for looking for more interesting things to think about, like what that guy meant when he posted that thing on Facebook, or how many congressmen to offer PR services to while still serving as a reporter on a daily broadsheet. I mean, it’s not like there’s much else to do.

Most days, congressmen just come in for the roll call (if they bother to come at all) and then retire to the House lounge to gather their strength after the extreme effort of appearing at the House. Those that stay behind listen to debates, chatter among themselves, or play Angry Birds.

(Thx, Twitter account of Kabataan Rep. Mong Palatino!)

Indolent Indio strikes a blow against public indecency

Indolent Indio‘s long and lazy campaign against pornography in advertising has paid off.

Our crusade against smutty Red Ribbon ads (See “Is This a Cake or a Cock?,” 11 September 2009, “Is This Going To Be The Last Show?“, 10 June 2010) has resulted in a victory that is as sweet as cakes that do not look like penises.

This cake is not a lie

“Finally, I can drive down Epifanio Delos Santos Ave. without seeing a giant cock covered in frosting,” Vincent Bartolome, a totally fictitious bus driver, wrote Indolent Indio. Without huge images of cream-filled tube steaks to distract him, Bartolome says he can focus on driving safely, not overloading his bus, and giving passengers the courtesy they deserve.

Valenzuela Mayor Sherwin Gatchalian, who had a huge billboard of showing the Philippine rugby team in their underwear torn down earlier this year, was among the first to send us his congratulations. “Now, I no longer feel threatened,” he said.

John Rawlins, a black soldier in the movie Glory (1989), was overjoyed. “That’s right, Hines. Ain’t no dream.  Go tell your folks how kingdom come in the year of jubilee! ,” he said in that scene where they marched through a town and there were no cocks nor cakes in sight.

The Red Ribbon website is now 71% porn free


Abalos says Department of Justice is harboring criminals


Seriously. Fuck this guy.

Benjamin Abalos, former Commission on Elections chairman and paragon of integrity, has accused Justice Secretary Leila De Lima of harboring criminals.

By harboring criminals, of course, Abalos means putting two witnesses who tagged him in alleged poll fraud in 2007 under the Witness Protection Program. He says former Comelec election supervisors Lilian Suan-Radam and Yogie Martiriza were placed under witness protection prematurely.

The two lawyers came out this week saying Abalos gave them orders through Comelec regional director Michael Abas to make sure administration candidates won in their region. De Lima has put them in the Witness Protection Program while their testimonies are being evaluated.

Radam has been charged with electoral sabotage and Abalos said the Department of Justice has to ask for permission from the court before giving her witness protection.

“Hindi ko maintindihan what is happening. Itong dalawang ito ang sa ngayon ay inamin nilang nagkasala sila, inamin nilang tumanggap sila ng pera (I don’t understand ano ang nangyayari, these two have admitted breaking the law),” Abalos said.

Under the Witness Protection, Security, and Benefit Act, the DOJ has to petition the court to discharge an accused so can testify as a state witness. De Lima says she has already ordered the Witness Protection Program to do that.  The law says that once a petition is filed, “the Court shall order the discharge and exclusion of the said accused from the information.”

Binabale-wala mo lang ang ating proseso (You are disregarding due process),” Abalos, who has repeatedly denied brokering shady multi-million peso deals in violation of bidding processes, said. He warned that De Lima will destroy the credibility of a joint DOJ-Comelec investigation into allegations of poll fraud while he was Comelec chairman.

(Thx, Indolent reader FreeSince09!)

A wild Senator Lapid Appears!

A rare sighting of Senator Manuel Lapid has him giving his views on the controversial Reproductive Health bill and basically giving proof of life. This interview with Lapid is “rare” not because the senator hates talking to people but because seeing him at the Senate is just as rare.


This photograph wasn’t even taken at the Senate. This was at Sofitel, the hotel outside the Senate, where he met with fellow mythical creatures the Sigbin, Loch Ness Monster, and the Baiji Chinese River Dolphin.

It was probably a pool party

Philippines to outlaw planking

Quezon City Representative Winston Castelo has filed a bill to penalize the stupid art of planking after students protesting oil price hikes this week planked on the roads during a transport strike.


“Parents and teachers have reason to be alarmed… The Filipino psyche of our young children in school is under attack—right here and now,” he said. The congressman  from the 2nd District of Quezon City, where rugby boys roam the streets and illegal motorcycle drag races are held at night, is right, the psyche of our young children are indeed under attack. By pesky things like poverty and hopelessness. And, to some extent, by Internet memes. But only to the same extent that watching mixed-martial arts on YouTube will make me a violent bloodthirsty man with killer muscles.


Help me! My psyche is being attacked!


Castelo warns “unbelieving bus drivers and law enforcement authorities might just ram through these warm and living bodies rolled out on highways.” Which, really, is the only way to deal with somebody who has suddenly decided to plop face down on the road.

"Okay...You can stop faking now..."

“Lest this picture, read in newspapers or posted on the Internet might evolve into a new mindset that just might go viral or very contagious, let it be nipped in the bud,” Castelo says, not knowing that he has nothing to worry about. He ought to know that by the time a fad comes to the Philippines, it is on its last legs. If it isn’t broken already, we’ll find a way to make it so. This is the Philippines, after all. This is where the Internet comes to die.


UPDATE 2: Planking will only be illegal during rallies and protest actions. Regular old planking is allowed and bus drivers are free to run them over.


UPDATE: Here is an actual quote from Rep. Castelo’s press release, a copy of which was forwarded to us:

“Parents and teachers have reason to be alarmed if these similar protest actions will have as a scheme and scene otherwise warm and living bodies laid down across street highways as though they were offerings to the gods.”

Ngai, n'gha'ghaa, bugg-shoggog, y'hah; Yog-Sothoth, Yog-Sothoth. . . .



Anti-Social Media: Gentleman of the Press

A veteran employee at one government office stands to lose his retirement benefits over a bullshit complaint by a reporter from a small (in size and circulation) paper.

The reporter is, himself, rather small.

The reporter has accused the employee, who works in the media division of that government office, of kicking him and cursing at him over some minor misunderstanding.


Apparently, the reporter was lying on a couch in a room where government media hang out. Incidentally, he was also getting in the way of people trying to do their jobs.


When the government employee, a veteran photojournalist who has covered wars in Vietnam and Mindanao, tapped the reporter with his foot to ask him to get out of the way, the reporter got offended.


He immediately got on the phone to complain to the media division head saying he had been kicked. The cursing came after, and actually has basis. Pissed off at the fuss, the veteran photojournalist did say “Putang ina.”


Which, come on, doesn’t even mean anything anymore. Not when, as a source says, you’re a tabloid reporter who makes jokes about anal sex and sex in general. Besides, anyone who has worked with that government employee knows he’s cranky, half-deaf, and curses like a pirate all the time.


Putang ina. Kung sinipa ko siya, e di putok mukha nga (If I kicked him, his face would be busted),”  the government employee reportedly said in his defense. And, to be fair, the tabloid reporter’s face is. But that is from years ago and only the scars remain.


In an ideal world, journalists watch out for excesses and abuses in government. And it seems this tabloid reporter has taken that to heart, seeing the encounter as an affront to press freedom (or something similar).


This is not the first time, either. Sources say the tabloid reporter has previously raised hell after policemen guarding the government office he covers refused to let a taxi he was riding in enter the complex without leaving an ID. Incensed that the policeman did not know who he was and had the gall to do his job, our reporter had him summoned to the press office and gave him a dressing down until the cop apologized. For doing his job.


He may get his way again this time. We have been told that the media division is leaning on its employee to apologize just to get the bullshit complaint out of the way. Reportedly, he has already been suspended pending a decision on the complaint.


No word, though, on whether the tabloid reporter will ever apologize using the government agency’s name when he got arrested over something. Just when his press credentials would have come in handy (but unethically), our reporter took the moral high road and just claimed to be on the staff of a government official.

The reporter has been trying to make the career shift to political operator and has curried a lot of favor with government officials. He has been known to brag about his connections and his ability to get the government to pay for food and medicine for his friends.

You can call him “Bata” because he is child-like and because, as our tipster says, “bata siya ng mga politiko.” His family name is an island somewhere in the Visayas. Boracay, maybe?


(Thx for the tip, Indolent reader Payanig Sa Pa-Astig!)

Mr. Pacquiao To Go From Congress

"You have the floor, Mr. Speaker."


Little more than a year into a three-year term, Sarangani Representative Manny Pacquiao has already had enough of the House of Representatives and wants to move to the Sarangani provincial capitol in 2013.

The professional boxer and part-time congressman is reportedly “[dismayed] over the slow pace of how changes for the country are made within the compounds of Batasang Pambansa in Quezon City.”

“I want to experience serving in the executive. And I prefer making decisions when to implement the laws and I want these laws implemented immediately. But here in Congress, if you want to file (a bill), you have to wait for several months (before implementing it),” Pacquiao said.

And although Pacquiao is right, he may have considered that before running for Congress in the first place. His 2010 bid for a House seat in Sarangani province was not his first. He ran, but lost, in 2007. And that gave him three years to think about what Congress is, what it does, and how long it takes to do it, before deciding to run again.

And it’s not like he has had to twiddle his thumbs while the slow wheels of legislation grind exceedingly slow. He’s off boxing, or training to box, or having dinner with Paris Hilton most of the time, anyway.

Of course, things were different during the run up to the elections. According to a report on Japan Times:

“I want to help them because I know what they feel right now. It is not easy to help other people. That is a big responsibility. I will focus on that for the meantime,” he said.

And he did. Right until he won and had to train for another fight.

But, if nothing else, at least Pacquiao’s decision to run for governor is good news for the people of Sarangani. With his political plans made public this soon, Pacquiao can spend the time crafting legislation that he, as a potential governor, thinks will help his province. He can work with the Sarangani provincial board to create a legislative agenda that they can use when he moves to the capital. He can–

Pacquiao also said he would rather concentrate on boxing first instead of politics, especially in view of his upcoming rematch with Juan Manuel Marquez of Mexico.”


Anti-Media Social: Our Lady of Pangasinan

Here’s a nice reversal on things.

Sectoral group Bayan Muna filed a plunder case against Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo Thursday over the failed ZTE National Broadband Network deal. Reporters scrambled to cover it and got the story.

Here is a sidebar to the whole thing:

While this was going on, politician sent out a text message to reporters on different beats. His subtle message? “XXX can be asked for comments on the sixth plunder complaint against ex-PGMA.” While some politicians would have been content with releasing a written statement to the press, this one wanted to be interviewed even though nobody was asking.

Our baby mouse tells us that journalists who took the bait and called him up to ask questions were then told (politely) to wait because the politician was busy.

Although he is new in politics and cannot be expected to know how to deal with the press yet, he will gave to learn quickly or never have to deal with the press again.

A clue: Like his once prominent father, this politician can be referred to by his initials, one of which is J. His father used to be influential but the family’s fortunes have taken a turn since a falling out with Malacanang.