GMA’s SONA — It’s not my fault

Arroyo’s almost one-hour long State of the Nation Address (SONA) squarely put the blame on whatever is wrong with the country on everybody and everything — except her.

Nature did not gift us with a mighty Mekong like Thailand and Vietnam, with their vast and naturally fertile plains. Nature instead put our islands ahead of our neighbours in the path of typhoons from the Pacific. So, we import 10% of the rice we consume.
But we used to be a rice exporter. Remember when fellow Asians flocked to the IRRI to learn more about agriculture? Yet even then our islands have been “ahead of our neighbors in the path of typhoons…”
In the same SONA, Arroyo said we exported rice from 1978-81. She did not explain what we did right but simply went on to say we have been exporting rice since Spanish times and that while we know how to grow rice, there are other factors that influence rice production. Unfortunately, many of those are the same factors — government policies on agrarian reform and agriculture — that farmers are asking HER GOVERNMENT to change.

Bukod sa libreng edukasyon sa elementarya at high school, nadoble ang pondo para sa mga college scholarships, while private high school scholarship funds from the government have quadrupled.
Sounds nice. But check out this link, which says that the Philippines is “unlikely to meet ‘Education for All’ goals.”

More advanced corruption practices require a commensurate advances in legislative responses. Colleagues in Congress, we need a more stringent Anti-Graft Act.
Yes, we need better laws that would allow us to prosecute those who seek shelter in other countries (like Jocjoc Bolante) and those who invoke executive orders to justify their refusal to tell the public what they know about questioned and questionable government transactions and actions (the list is long; let’s not bore ourselves with a recitation of their names).

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