By UPD SW130 Policy Class Updated Tuesday October 02, 2012 - 10:07am

“Naglalatag ng kumot ‘pag gabi para matulog tapos tinutupi para makakain sa umaga,” Clara described her one and a half meter squared house as she folded the blanket under the table that also nested their sole gas stove. 

By Featured Blogger Marck Ronald Rimorin Updated Monday October 01, 2012 - 3:53pm

Like “good governance” and “national interest,” the government in recent times – regardless of administration – has a penchant for the phrase, “proper forum.” And in light of the Cybercrime Law, it was, rather ironically, presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda who called on (in another twist of irony) Anonymous Philippines to “bring their protests to the proper forum,” right after the latter defaced some government websites.

By Nicole Paula Curato and Jonathan Corpus Ong Updated Sunday September 30, 2012 - 10:17pm

The RH debate has become one of the bitterest controversies of our time.

By Featured Blogger Marck Ronald Rimorin Updated Monday February 28, 2011 - 10:05am

My generation isn't old enough to remember EDSA. I was just seven months old when People Power happened; my parents named me after President Marcos and President Reagan. My mom says that they never expected Marcos to be ousted by popular revolution. I grew up after EDSA: part of a generation trying to search for the meaning of perhaps the most important event in modern Philippine history.

By Featured Blogger Marck Ronald Rimorin Updated Monday February 14, 2011 - 12:00am

For those of us who have appropriated the revolution of the Egyptian people as our own victory (what with our commitment to tweet in behalf of those putting their bodies on the line), it's easy not to see what lies ahead of a nation fresh off the experience of ouster. With Hosni Mubarak gone, it seems that the tried-and-tested formula of installing and allowing an unfamiliar (and often Western) form of governance to spontaneously build and grow itself in a very different territory.

We find it familiar, if not inspiring, in this country; if not because in too many ways, we're a good example of a state born out of revolutions that were never completed.

By Featured Blogger Marck Ronald Rimorin Updated Monday January 31, 2011 - 10:10am

When the houses of informal settlers get demolished, it's quite easy for the haves to look at widespread poverty and the inherent unfairness in the economic system as personal hurdles that one should surmount, instead of injustices that should be corrected by way of reform.

Last Tuesday, around 40 people were hurt in the demolition of informal dwellings at Corazon de Jesus, Pinaglabanan, San Juan City. There were rocks and bottles hurled from the side of the informal settlers protecting their abodes, while there were water cannons and tear gas canisters propelled from the side of the police. The cause of the violence: the community was to be levelled down to create a new City Hall.

By Featured Blogger Marck Ronald Rimorin Updated Monday January 24, 2011 - 12:00am

If we are to consider the line of reasoning followed by Andres Manuel, defense counsel for the suspects in the Maguindanao Massacre, the story could have gone this way: on November 23, 2009, some of the 58 people who died in the gruesome murder could have spontaneously died from seizures. They could have bludgeoned themselves to death, or some of them may have shot themselves with high-caliber guns (one shooting himself or herself nine times).

The graves and the backhoe would have just been there, incidental objects, part of a tableau of unexplainable gore. A few hours later, a horde of feral necrophiliacs would have attacked the victims. Following this conjecture, the massacre would have not happened at all, and the incident would have been a very bizarre case of mass suicide.

By Featured Blogger Marck Ronald Rimorin Updated Monday January 17, 2011 - 12:00am

Over a year ago, perhaps the most amazing display of social solidarity in the Philippines happened on Twitter. As a great portion of Metro Manila was submerged in floodwaters and cloaked in blackouts caused by storm “Ondoy,” Filipinos from all over social media came together to help out. PayPal accounts rapidly reached thousands of dollars in donations, and people went to help pack relief goods and supplies through the power of Facebook and Twitter.

Fifteen months later, as rains, floods, and landslides assault some of the poorest and most vulnerable provinces in the Philippines, the country's social media sphere didn't do the same. There was outrage, all right: the caps on broadband Internet services, P-Noy's purchase of a Porsche, and the hullabaloo over horoscopes and new zodiac signs. From where I was, the smattering of tweets and Facebook status messages seemed disappointing, sad, and to a certain extent, outrageous.

By Featured Blogger Marck Ronald Rimorin Updated Monday January 10, 2011 - 12:00am

Over six months into the Aquino Administration, I guess it's safe to say that an opposition has formed – one that is clearly against President Benigno Aquino III.

In The STAR's podcast hosted by Mr. Cito Beltran back in July 6, 2010, I speculated that an “industry” of opposition against P-Noy on his first few weeks was present. Back then, it was more or less characterized by the election aftermath than actual government bungles. Then again, everything from mishandled tweets to non-attendance at important global functions, from facepalm-inducing slogans to legal and Constitutional challenges, have more or less put a few potholes on the “matuwid na daan.”

By Featured Blogger Marck Ronald Rimorin Updated Monday December 27, 2010 - 12:00am

Back in the 1990s, there was this surge of “true crime” movies that portrayed the men and women of the law — lawyers, investigators, police officers, judges, and even priests — as almost-superheroes. The heroes would start raiding drug dens and rescuing hostages with guns a-blazing, the trials would last five minutes, and justice would be served. Yet the Vizconde Massacre showed a side of law enforcement that we’re all too familiar with, and it’s not the swift and speedy justice found in movie scripts.

It’s one of mishandled evidence, bungled investigations, questionable testimonies, and sustained suffering. It wasn’t justice; rather, it was vindication. It wasn’t a thumbs-up for the criminal justice system; rather, it was a black eye. On the one hand, you have a man who was imprisoned for close to 15 years, only to have his conviction overturned. On the other hand, you have a man who sought justice for his family’s murder, and is still being denied that answer 15 years later.