Friday, January 28, 2005


invites you to a lecture by

Professor Erik S. Reinert
Professor of Technology Governance and Development Strategies
Talinn Technical University in Estonia

on the

"Different Types of Development:
Tracing the Evolution of Economic Thought and Economic Policy"

2 pm, Friday, 4 February 2005
Conference Rooms 3 and 4
Social Science Building
Ateneo de Manila University.

Professor Reinert is a renowned and leading thinker in the European academic and business circles, his experience ranging from teaching economics courses in various Universities across Europe to being Head of Research of the Norsk Investorforum and to Permanent Consultancy with the European Commission, Directorate General XIII and XIV. He is also the co-founder and member of the Executive Committee of "The
Other Canon," a group that provides tools for economic development and industrial policy while coming from a production-based economic theory where economic development is an intrinsically uneven process. Professor Reinert's other research interests include the application of evolutionary / Schumpeterian economics in a third world setting and history of economic policy.

For confirmation of attendance, please contact Mr. William Alamin at 4265626. For your queries, you may email them to

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Iniimbitahan ang lahat na dumalo sa LIRA Lecture tampok ang Pambansang Alagad ng Sining Para sa Panitikan Virgilio S. Almario sa 5 Pebrero 2005, alas-tres ng hapon sa Audio-Visual Room, Arts and Letters Bldg., University of Sto. Tomas, EspaƱa, Maynila. Ito ay libre at bukas sa publiko lalo na sa mga guro at manunulat. Ang lecture ay handog ng Thomasian Writers' Guild at LIRA o Linangan sa Imahen, Retorika at Anyo, isang organisasyon ng mga makatang nagsusulat sa wikang Filipino.

Noong 1985, itinatag ang LIRA ni Prof. Virgilio S. Almario na mas kilala sa kanyang sagisag-panulat na Rio Alma. Taon-taon ay nag-oorganisa ang LIRA ng mga gawaing pampanitikan tulad ng palihan sa pagtula, lecture, seminar, poetry reading at marami pang iba.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

William Safire bids goodbye to his readers and takes on the full-time chairmanship of the Dana Foundation.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Currently reading:

All I Really Need to Know in Business I Learned at Microsoft by Julie Bick
Petty censors
I was laughing the whole afternoon today after reading about the in-fighting among the public censors at the MTRCB.Today reports that Msgr. Nico Bautista and Benjamin Bernales allegedly tried to badmouth and physically attack Chairman Maria Conzoliza Laguardia.

Apparently, what prompted the ruckus was an incident report sent by Carmelita Padilla to other board members recounting the insults hurled at her by Msgr. Bautista:

In the incident report sent to Laguardia, copies of which were given to MTRCB board members, Padilla said that while reviewing the television show "The Top 10 Videos of 2004," Bautista, a member of the subcommittee asked her: “Tinuruan ka na bang mag-fast forward? Alam mo na ba ’yun?”

Bautista then called one of the operators and ordered him to have the video tape run fast forward.

“While still watching, I kept my composure and focused on what I am reviewing. Monsignor Bautista and Mr. Bernales were challenging my credibility. Finally Monsignor Bautista’s curiosity got the better of him and he asked me: Bakit ikaw ang chairman dapat si Ber [Bernales] Is this your first time?” Padilla quoted him as saying in her incident report.

To this she said she replied: “Actually it’s my third time now.”

Padilla said Bautista countered: “But why you? You’re just new. Did you already have an orientation or a briefing from the chairman?”

Padilla said when she replied with a smile, Bautista started belittling her and told her to call Laguardia.

“Tawagin mo si Laguardia. I want to talk to her. She doesn’t even know what she is doing. What kind of government is this,” Padilla quoted Bautista as telling her.

I didn't know our censors had such sharp tongues. The next time there is a vacancy at the MTRCB, perhaps they would do well to include in the qualifications: Must know how to fast-forward.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Scholarship grants
The Dan David Prize announces the availability of 10 scholarships of US$ 15,000.00 each to outstanding doctoral students and post doctoral researchers from
universities all over the world. The Dan David Prize is a joint international enterprise endowed by the Dan David Foundation, headquartered at Tel Aviv University. It encompasses the three time dimensions - Past, Present and Future - that represent realms of human achievement.

Criterion: Young researchers with excellent achievements and promise studying topics related to the field chosen for this year.

Selected Fields for 2005:

Past Time Dimension - Archaeology
Present Time Dimension - The Performing Arts (Dance, Film, Music, Theater)
Future Time Dimension - Materials Science

Application Deadline: 30 March 2005
For details, please log on to:

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Free computers
Are you a member of an NGO which provides youth programs or services in education, job training, opportunities for youth, maternal and child health, adult literacy/mentoring and other critical social community services ? Then you may be interested in this donation program of the World Bank.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

Talk on Spirituality and Leadership
Dr. John J. DeGioia, Georgetown President

The Ateneo community is invited to a talk to be given by Dr. John J. DeGioia, President of Georgetown University on January 7, 2005, Friday, at 9:30-11:30 a.m., Escaler Hall, Science Education Center (SEC), on the subject of "Leadership and Spirituality".

Dr. DeGioia holds the distinction of being the first lay president of Georgetown University in Washington D.C., considered the most important Jesuit university in the United States. Drawing from his experience of leading Georgetown into the 21st century, Dr. DeGioia will focus in-depth on the challenges faced by lay leaders in Catholic schools. He has also been asked to share personal insights into how one may prepare and nurture one's spirituality for the huge task of leading a university.

Please join us in welcoming, listening to, and exchanging ideas with Dr. DeGioia. His talk promises to be rich in insight that should prove helpful and inspirational to all as a new year begins.

May we request those who would like to attend the talk to contact us at the following numbers: Rina (loc. 4007), Lisa (loc. 4032) Joanna (loc. 4031), or email to ensure the availability of seats.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Currently reading:

The Bridegroom by Ha Jin

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Marxism for the masses
Because Karl Marx is barely intelligible even for die-hard communists, the AtlanticBlog offers this exegesis of the great philosopher by the highly readable Jane Austen:

From each according to his abilities:

“I think, Edward,” said Mrs. Dashwood as they were at breakfast the last morning, “you would be a happier man if you had any profession to engage your time and give an interest to your plans and actions. Some inconvenience to your friends, indeed, might result from it: you would not be able to give them so much of your time. But (with a smile) you would be materially benefited in one particular at least: you would know where to go when you left them.”

“I do assure you,” he replied, “that I have long thought on this point, as you think now. It has been and is and probably will always be a heavy misfortune to me that I have had no necessary business to engage me, no profession to give me employment, or afford me anything like independence. But unfortunately my own nicety and the nicety of my friends have made me what I am: an idle, helpless being. We could never agree in our choice of a profession. I always preferred the church, as I still do. But that was not smart enough for my family. They recommended the army. That was a great deal too smart for me. The law was allowed to be genteel enough; many young men who had chambers in the Temple made a very good appearance in the first circles and drove about town in very knowing gigs. But I had no inclination for the law, even in this less abstruse study of it which my family approved. As for the navy, it had fashion on its side, but I was too old when the subject was first started to enter it; and at length, as there was no necessity for my having any profession at all, as I might be as dashing and expensive without a red coat on my back as with one, idleness was pronounced on the whole to be the most advantageous and honourable, and a young man of eighteen is not in general so earnestly bent on being busy as to resist the solicitations of his friends to do nothing. I was therefore entered at Oxford and have been properly idle ever since.”

To each according to his needs:

“I believe you are right, my love; it will be that there should be no annuity in the case; whatever I may give them occasionally will be of far greater assistance than a yearly allowance, because they will only enlarge their style of living if they felt sure of a larger income and would not be sixpence the richer for it at the end of the year. It will certainly be much the best way. A present of fifty pounds, now and then, will prevent their ever being distressed for money, and will, I think, be amply discharging my promise to my father.”

“To be sure it will. Indeed, to say the truth, I am convinced within myself that your father had no idea of your giving them any money at all. The assistance he thought of, I dare say, was only such as might be reasonably expected of you; for instance, such as looking out for a comfortable small house for them, helping them to move their things, and sending them presents of fish and game, and so forth, whenever they are in season. I’ll lay my life that he meant nothing further; indeed, it would be very strange and unreasonable if he did. Do but consider, my dear Mr. Dashwood, how excessively comfortable your mother-in-law and her daughters may live on the interest of seven thousand pounds, besides the thousand pounds belonging to each of the girls, which brings them in fifty pounds a year apiece, and of course they will pay their mother for their board out of it. Altogether, they will have five hundred a year amongst them, and what on earth can four women want for more than that? They will live so cheap! Their housekeeping will be nothing at all. They will have no carriage, no horses, and hardly any servants; they will keep no company, and can have no expenses of any kind! Only conceive how comfortable they will be! Five hundred a year! I am sure I cannot imagine how they will spend half of it; and as to your giving them more, it is quite absurd to think of it. They will be much more able to give you something.”
Human rights advocacy program
The Advocates Program of the Center for the Study of Human Rights at Columbia is now accepting applications.

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Impending higher prices for books
About a fortnight ago, the Inquirer reported that House Bill 3105, one of Malacanang's proposed revenue bills, seeks to impose a 10-percent value-added tax (VAT) on the "sale, importation, printing and publication of books."

The imposition of this tax would, of course, mean pricier books, thereby further discouraging, according to National Book Development Board Chair Dennis Gonzales, the reading of books in this country. But what is especially absurd about the proposed tax is that it will spare locally printed publications and imported magazines and newspapers, which means FHM, Philippine Tatler, Vogue and Cosmopolitan can retain their old price tags.

I can understand how their media clout can explain the exemption of our local newspapers, but exempting imported fashion magazines is inexplicable, a seeming perversion of our public priorities. Over at InMediasRes, we were all indignant when we heard about this impending VAT; books in the Philippines are expensive now as they are. Imagine my consternation this morning when my internet surfing yielded this news reporting that Brazil is eliminating taxes on the production, sale, and importation of books precisely to encourage reading among its people. (Brazil now has gorgeous people, must they be more well-read too?)

Because of economic mismanagement, there is no question that our government needs more sources of revenues fast. But would it ever be reasonable to stave off financial crisis at the expense of our brains? If you too are concerned, do write the two chairmen of the Congress's committees on ways and means: Sen Ralph Recto (telefax No. 834-8974) and Rep. Jesli Lapuz (telefax no. 931-4955). Unfortunately, the two legislators have no e-mails so you must dispatch your letter through the old-fashioned fax machine.
Why the animals survived
This Slate article explains how the animals at Sri Lanka's national wildlife park at Yala survived the tsunami:

First, it's possible that the animals may have heard the quake before the tsunami hit land. The underwater rupture likely generated sound waves known as infrasound or infrasonic sound. These low tones can be created by hugely energetic events, like meteor strikes, volcanic eruptions, avalanches, and earthquakes. Humans can't hear infrasound—the lowest key on a piano is about the lowest tone the human ear can detect. But many animals—dogs, elephants, giraffes, hippos, tigers, pigeons, even cassowaries—can hear infrasound waves.

A second early-warning sign the animals might have sensed is ground vibration. In addition to spawning the tsunamis, Sunday's quake generated massive vibrational waves that spread out from the epicenter on the floor of the Indian Ocean's Bay of Bengal and traveled through the surface of the Earth. Known as Rayleigh waves (for Lord Rayleigh, who predicted their existence in 1885), these vibrations move through the ground like waves move on the surface of the ocean. They travel at 10 times the speed of sound. The waves would have reached Sri Lanka hours before the water hit.

How about us humans? Don't we hear those waves? We do. But, alas, the article says, we don't recognize them as danger signs:

Some people experience sensations of being spooked or even feeling religious in the presence of infrasound. We also experience Rayleigh waves via special sensors in our joints (called pacinian corpuscles), which exist just for that purpose. Sadly, it seems we don't pay attention to the information when we get it. Maybe we screen it out because there's so much going on before our eyes and in our ears.