Monday, July 28, 2014

PNoy SONA 2014 Review: Pass or Flop?

With the recent 5th SONA or State of the Nation Address of the president of the Philippines, Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III, here's what I have to say.



Introduction


The introduction of the address starts with figurative speech. Like most of his SONAs, it's clouded in flowery words, but anyway, that's still the introduction. It was shorter than most of his former addresses and started right away with the figures.

Average Score: 3/5

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General Support Programs


Success of TESDA programs


TESDA is a good program and is and always will be a decent ticket to getting jobs and/or starting a business. His report for it was so-so and there was nothing much to say. However, the inclusion of DAP made it sound ugly to the public.

Score: 3/5

 

Conditional Cash Transfer Program


Let's just hope this program makes progress that's not selective, but completely for the masses and not used for political whoring.

Score: 3/5

Lowered Poverty Incidence


Of course, a lot of people disagree to this. I think my point of view for this is so-so, since not really much has changed. While the economy has raised, it's smothered by the high-rise of prices, so I don't think the poverty incidence lowered that much.

Score: 3/5

ALS (Alternative Learning System)


The ALS program is also quite okay, but since he didn't mention any DAP stuff, and because it's involving the minority tribes, I think this one takes a god cake.

Score: 4/5

Average Score: 3.5/5

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Fund Accomplishments


Increase in Tax Collection


We all know that tax has always been the heaviest burden since the time of Jesus Christ. Heck, even Jesus was being charged with hefty amount of tax even though he's just a Son of God who came down on earth as a freelance preacher. Tax is only good when there is transparency. But with the current situation of corruption and larger gap between rich and poor (if you see it physically and visually), it's hard to say that tax is good for the country, as you don't know where the heck it goes, or if those online statements even tell the truth.

Score: 2/5

Paid P40 Billion Debt


At least, this is some good news for a change. Being able to pay some hefty debts means that we're starting to rise up from the tide. Just hope that it's not just a one-hit wonder and we won't have to make utang that much ever again.

Score: 4/5


Rise of Philippine Economic Zone Funds


Much like the Poverty Incidence, I'm not wholly convinced that the funds that go to our country are being put to good use, even if there is a rise, unless the cancer for corruption could be cured (which is generally impossible).

Score: 2/5

Average Score: 3/5

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Status Accomplishments


Upgraded Credit Ratings on Agencies


Accreditation is a good thing, especially if you're seeking out more investors who look for good standards and whatnot. So this is an A-OK for me.

Score: 4/5

Upgrade on Aviation Industry - Category 1


This is also an A+ for me, because an upgrade in our aviation status means more tourism. I just hope that it's not just the status but also the facilities, the scheduling systems, the friendliness of the staff, and other airport elements that should be well-observed for the sake of foreigners who take a trip onto our beloved land.

Score: 4/5

Lowered Labor Case and Strikes due to DOLE's Efforts


This doesn't strike (pun intended) an interesting pose for me that much, but it's also a good thing. But I think the more important issue is the job-to-applicant ratio, which is kind of slipping away, and I believe this might be just a diversion.

Score: 3/5

Average Score: 4/5

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Concrete Accomplishments


Big Budget for Infrastructures


You know what this means? More projects and more pogi points for the proponent congressmen, mayors, councilors, etc.

Score: 2/5

"Bawal ang Tongpats" in DPWH Project Proposal System


Okay, at least that simmers the above statement down a bit. But keep in mind that projects will always have kickbacks, no matter how much PNoy says they won't. New proposal system will definitely be made by the same people who propose these monster projects, so you can't really be sure that the system will have no flaws.

Score: 3/5

Widened and Improved National Road Projects and Infrastructures


This is a good one, too. However, the usage of sub-standard materials is obviously forbidden and will be considered another form of tongpats. Like, how many fricking road repairs do we get each day, week or month, especially in Metro Manila and national roads? Get those minimized first by putting in high-quality materials.

Score: 3/5

Average Score: 3/5

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Work In Progress

 

Preparation for 2016 Water Shortage


This'd better be real, because water supply is already being rationed here for more than a year, and this is why we worked up the courage to set up a tank system.

Score: 3/5

Flood Control Projects


For real? I hope so. But personally, I think the most effective flood control project lies within the discipline of the people. It's not just banning plastic - people should also learn how to properly dispose waste and Ilog Pasig is nowhere near a fricking dump site.

Score: 3/5

Upcoming Transportation Projects


Did you already consider how many forests, animals and wildlife would be damaged if you put up more industrial places? I hope it's in a strategic place, because otherwise, the exotic nature that tourists are looking for in our country will be completely gone by 2020. What we need is something that connects the far-apart islands, like the San Juanico Bridge, presumably an underwater subway (if our country's land can take it, that is). We've got a ton of awesome engineers and a lot of funds - put them to good use and don't let them go abroad!

Score: 2/5


Supplemental Budget for 2014


Extra budget? There's no need. What you need is to drown all of those crocodiles first, get them out of the session hall, remove them regardless of affinity, brotherhood, fraternity, utang na loob, or any other miscellaneous linkages, and the economy will be good as new.

Score: 2/5

Average Score: 2.5/5

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Calamity Support and Relief


Zamboanga Siege - Upcoming Relocation Houses


Relocation sites aren't always sweet. Most of the time, they're situated in far-away places where there is no hope for market and you'd have to travel mountains and valleys just to work or go to school. This is also the same reason why many informal settlers stick to living near the overpolluted and overpopulated places in Metro Manila.

Score: 2/5

Visayas Earthquake Damaged Bridges Fixed


While this is good, how sure are you that the materials used for the bridges are not sub-standard? When another typhoon and earthquake occurs? Then you'll have to rebuild it again?

Score: 3/5

Yolanda Drama


I'm sorry to say but, I know and I've seen and heard that there's tons of corruption and disruption in peace and order in the places stuck by the typhoon Yolanda. Despite hundreds to thousands of foreign aids, the progress ratio, compared to other countries like Japan, is quite a hopeless one. Since the areas in Tacloban and nearby places that were inflicted with damage have rarely outside communications, it's hard to maintain justice and ensure that people get what they deserve. We don't know what the heck is going on in there, so if they really do want to turn the hellish scenario into peaceful greenery, they should heavily station corps and troops there instead of putting them near Janet Napoles and all those PDAF-accused people. Yolanda victims and donors need more security from evil-bringers and people who like to take advantage.

Score: 1/5

Appraisal for his Cabinet Members


While gratitude is okay, it sounded almost like an early campaign hint for his 2016 army. Note how he never mentioned certain members whose names are on the hot plate.

Score: 2/5

Comparison of Yolanda to Other Big Worldwide Disasters


While it's true that it did take Indonesia and USA some time to get over those large earthquakes and hurricanes, it's also true that we've received a lot, and I mean A LOT of foreign help - from funds, to relief goods - we're almost in the same line as the one in Haiti. But it's been almost a year and we can hardly see any progress. If our people continue to abuse these foreign troops and their kindness, then we might not be able to get help from them ever again. Be wary of this, politicians.

Score: 2/5

Project NOAH and Forecasting Improvement


By the time of typhoon Glenda, the disaster preparedness did improve, and there was less damage than expected, or is it because Quezon, our province, and Laguna aren't those typhoon-prone areas? (not to brag or anything, though we did receive a ton of damage). But I admire the preparation of the whole Metro Manila, despite the fact that Glenda did come for her. Let's just hope it continues and not slacks off in the middle of its day and night job, and also for it to keep improving.

Score: 4/5

Average Score: 2.5/5

 

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Security Achievements


New AFP Helicopters, Boats and Gear


What the heck do you use these for? China? Russia? How many people are in those countries? Seriously? Even USA sounds like it wants to avoid any conflict with China, since a lot of their (and our) goods are coming from that country. It's the same concept of "why purchase an expensive guitar when you can't even play properly?".

Score: 1/5

Police and Security Improvements


Sadly, the police interview in the AVP only contained women. While it was good because it presented woman empowerment, it was rather one-sided and sexist, because it implies that male policemen are good-for-nothing and are mostly slackers. They should've featured guys, too.

Score: 2/5

Lower Crime Rate


How about those riding-in-tandems and CCTV sensations? Are they not crimes? Can you even walk on any street of Metro Manila (or Laguna for that matter) without having to worry about random thugs eyeing on your phone, regardless if it's a tiny little speck that doesn't have WiFi? How about those hazing victims whose cases were never gonna be resolved because nearly 95% of government officials belong to a certain fraternity? How about the victims of frame-ups, rape, child trafficking, injustice, human rights abuse, racism, sexism, bullying, and other heinous crimes that we see nearly every second of the day on our television, in which networks try so hard to deliver us for the sake of ratings?

Score: 1/5

Average Score: 1/5

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Getting Back People's Trust


Reform in Bureau of Customs


Large collection? That should help, but not in a country shrouded with people whose minds have corruption as a social cancer and a natural part of our lives now, like premarital sex. Straightening the Bureau of Customs is like trying to tame a person whose mind has already been illegally drugged. It will take a lot of work.

Score: 2/5

Problems and Solutions in Land and Agrarian Reform


I don't have much to say in the agrarian sector, but I know there are a lot of problems, especially with the 'shortage of rice', which I don't really think is true. Even if we do replace a lot of fields with shopping malls, I'm sure DPWH has rules and regulations with regards to strategic places that shouldn't harm the environment or kill the agrarian sector. 

Score: 3/5

Bangsamoro Peace Agreement


Let's just hope this peace agreements lasts for a reasonable amount of time. 'Till hell freezer over' is an impossible feat, but if the government is calm enough and supportive, I'm sure we'll be able to win their hearts with true and just peace, not political agendas.

Score: 3/5

Average Score: 3/5

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Tough Issues


Labor Issues


My opinion for PNoy's address on labor issues is pretty much average. Labor today becomes harder due to the rise of prices and commodities.

Score: 3/5

Energy Issues


PNoy needs to use some good strategy so that our energy crisis doesn't affect our daily lives and our electric bill doesn't shoot off the roof. Because I'm sure all of use are fed up with this electricity thing.

Score: 2/5

 

Basic Food Price Issues


If this doesn't get fixed right away, many Filipinos will want to stay abroad. Much like in the energy crisis, there should be strict monitoring with the distributors of rice (especially NFA), garlic and other basic needs. Let luxuries be luxuries - what matters first is the basics, because not everyone can afford to buy bacon (not even us).

Score: 2/5

Average Score: 2/5

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Personal Stuff


A Hard Day's Job


He states his feelings of remorse about how his job as a president is not an easy task. And why not? He is president of the Philippines, after all. Of course, it's no easy task. Did he take this responsibility without knowing the consequences? If so, then he might just be someone who was forced to take the torch.

Score: 3/5

Political Noise Clouds Good Government Programs


This is somewhat true, since not all of us would waste our time watching channel 4 (People's Television a.k.a. the official channel of the government). Thanks for reminding us, but we're also reminding you that true good governance is not merely for showing off, but for public service.

Score: 4/5

Critics are Contradicting the Masses and not the President


I think I understand this. It means that in order to make our country more progressive, we should have discipline in ourselves, other than the government. This is quite true, but shouldn't it start first with the government because they're expected to be a good example for the folks? Followers of a religion can't be expected to be good if their God isn't a good role model.

Score: 3/5

Gotta Face the Music


PNoy express how he's ready to accept the odds of this country, in a dramatic tone of voice, like he always used to do. Again, he's dragging the names and legacy of his parents. While it's true you should pay tribute to your family, you should also remember that you make your own legacy, not your parents or sisters. 

Score: 2/5

Personal Thank You's


Gratitude is a good thing. Keep it up. Just don't let your little sister take away your screen time too much.

Score: 3/5

Average Score: 3/5

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Conclusion


The 1 hour and 30 minutes of a report to his 'bosses' ends up a so-so presentation, patched with a bit of apologetic tones and avoidance with hot topics. But on the other hand, it's good that he didn't mention too much political drama, compared to his former speeches. But with only one SONA slot left, what do you think will become of him?

Final Rating: 2.75 / 5

Remarks: Barely Passed

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