imageWashington, D.C. (The Adobo Chronicles) – The Obama administration on Monday announced one of the strongest actions ever taken by the United States government to fight climate change, a proposed Environmental Protection Agency regulation to cut carbon pollution from the nation’s power plants 30 percent from 2005 levels by 2030.

While the announcement is unprecedented, many believe it is at least 3o years late.  With the onset of personal computer technology in the 1980’s, people had long stopped using typewriters and carbon paper to make duplicate copies. In addition, carbonless paper is now widely used in everyday tasks like making duplicates when manually writing checks from one’s bank checkbook.

“What is there to cut when carbons disappeared decades ago, ” asked House Speaker John Boehner. He added: “And since Obama’s plan is to cut carbon pollution by 2030, that’s adding another 16 years to the lateness of this initiative.”

At least, Boehner got his math correct, environmental activists said.



imageManila, Philippines (The Adobo Chronicles) – Just as more than 20 million students trekked to public schools nationwide for the beginning of the schoolyear, the Aquino administration announced it was releasing One Billion pesos for the repair of schoolbuildings damaged by last year’s powerful typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda).

Many of the students will be returning to schools without roofs, without desks and chairs, and in many cases without walls. Some will be packed into small rooms like sardines and others will have to squat under trees in the open to receive academic instruction.

A familiar sight millions of students will be returning to this new schoolyear in the Philippines
A familiar sight millions of students will be returning to this new schoolyear in the Philippines

School administrators, teachers, parents and students immediateky criticized President Aquino for the much-delayed release of funds, coming more than six months after the devastating typhoon, and not in time for the beginning of the new schoolyear.

Aquino, known for consistenty blaming anyone and everyone for missteps, failures and inefficiencies of his administration, defended himself against critics by saying that someone messed with his desk calendar in his office in Malacañang (Philippine presidential palace).

A palace spokesperson said that Aquino’s desk calendar showed that it was only January 2, not June 2, when he authorized the release of funds. So to Aquino’s mind, there were at least five months remaining before the new schoolyear, leaving enough time for the repairs and construction to be made.

Malacañang has ordered an investigation on who was responsible for altering the president’s desk calendar.


The mentors in the new reality TV show, 'Beauty Queen Academy'
The mentors in the new reality TV show, ‘Beauty Queen Academy’

Manila, Philippines (The Adobo Chronicles) – The Philippine Senate has the reputation as a do-nothing legislative body, exacerbated by the ongoing 10 Billion pork barrel scam in which almost half of the senators have been implicated in the elaborate siphoning of taxpayer funds into phony projects and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). It is therefore no surprise that senators are scrambling to propose and sponsor all kinds of bills to help distract public attention from the scam and repair the Senate’s tarnished record.

Senator Loren Legarda, one of those named in the scam, has proposed a new legislation that would establish a state-funded Beauty Queen Academy. It will be part of the publicly-supported University of the Philippines.

In recent years, the Philippines has been winning international beauty pageant crowns left and right and its winning streak seems unstoppable. Along with Venezuela and Brazil, the Philippines is in the elite circle of countries that have won in all the major international beauty pageants like Miss Universe, Miss International, Miss World and others.

Legarda’s bill, supported by all the senators so far implicated in the pork barrel scam, is aimed at preparing and training aspiring beauty queens to be sure-fire winners in international beauty pageants. The academy will offer full scholarships to  Filipinas who fit established criteria and great potential to win beauty titles.

Meanwhile, a leading television network in Manila has announced a new reality show similarly titled Beauty Queen Academy. It is similar to the American TV show, Ru Paul’s Drag Race, in which contestants vie for the crown by impressing celebrity judges with their beauty and talent. Well, sort of. Mentors and judges (see photo) are all former Philippine beauty queens.



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