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Asian Journal Feb 6 2009

Asian Journal Feb 6 2009

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Published by ASIAN JOURNAL
Asian Journal February 6, 2009 digital edition. Visit us at www.asianjournalusa.com or email asianjournal@aol.com.
Asian Journal February 6, 2009 digital edition. Visit us at www.asianjournalusa.com or email asianjournal@aol.com.

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Published by: ASIAN JOURNAL on Feb 07, 2009
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Gender and premarital sex among Filipino youth
(Continued on page 6)(Continued on page 3)(Continued on page 4)
 ROSES & THORNS  By Alejandro R. Roces Philstar 
The Ati-atihan is thePhilippines’ original answer to the Mardi Gras in NewOrleans and the Carnivalein Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Dancing for theSanto Niño
Students of the Doña Aurora Elementary School perform during the formal opening of the month-long Panagbenga festival in Ba- guio City yesterday. Panagbenga, which means season of blooms,
was created as a tribute to the city’s fowers and to boost tourism.
 PhilStar photo by Andy Zapata Jr.
 By Peachy Vibal-Guioguio
Boots Anson-Roa is wellknown among movie fansand entertainment watch-ers as one of the country’senduring and most liked personalities. Yet behind thesmiling facade is a story of cigarettes’ tragic impact onher family. In a revealing talk  before media practitionersand journalists in the recentlyheld forum Glamour, Smokeand Mirrors: A Seminar onWomen, Media and Tobacco,Boots narrated how Pete, her husband of 43 years, smokedto his death in 2007.“Pete started smokingwhen he was 15,” according
(Continued on page 4)
The arrival of Binyang earlyin the afternoon was alwaysa momentous and much-awaited event for adolescent boys like Eric and Teddy,who were at the peak of their  puberty. She would strut likea gazelle, with her high heels,long legs, thin waist and ample breasts. Her elongated neck complimented her angelic faceas she walked like a runwaymodel, unmindful of the eyesthat always followed her withadmiration.
By Simeon G. Silverio, Jr.
 Publisher & Editor 
The San Diego Asian JournalSee page 5
 Philippine Stories
The afternoon tryst
Siargao, Philippines.
Little do peopleknow, that whentrying to makedreams come true,hard realities can be so much a partof the equationthat these fancifulthoughts take onthe character of nightmares. AsI have come to
learn, nding the
dream is one thing; building it is quitethe other.
By Jesse Quinsaat
See page 14
To the Edge of the World:
 A Philippine Dream
For man is homofestivus, alwayslooking for areason to rejoice.The Ati-Atihan isstrictly audience- participation only.The people notonly dance in thestreets, the streetsdance with the people. Visitors tothe celebration un-dergo two changes:
rst, they become
of the Ati-Atihan;and second, they become the Ati-Atihan.There areseveral versionsof the origin of the Ati-Atihan (held everythird Sunday of January) inKalibo, Aklan. All agree thatthe name is derived from thename of the Atis, the ab-original Negritos of Panay.The inspiration though for the Ati-Atihan did not comefrom the aboriginal Negritos, but from a victory over theMoros.Instead, the Negritosand their dances merelyfurnished the motif for thecelebration.The Spanish Empire had
Boots on smoking hazards
 Boots Anson-Roa
to her. “During his activedays in the entertainment in-dustry where he dealt mostlywith production, Pete wasdoing three packs of ciga-rettes a day.” Then he suf-fered a stroke in 1997 which
(Continued on page 18)
February 6 - 12, 2009
Msgr. Gutierrez
Entertainment
The song Anthonywrote for Bush
The Gospel and  Economic Suffering 
Riz A. Oades
 By Aurea Calica Philstar 
Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago appealed yesterdayto the World Bank (WB) tofurnish the Senate with its
ofcial report detailing the
 blacklisted Filipino contrac-tors and political personalitiesinvolved in the alleged bidrigging of Philippine govern-ment projects.Santiago said the WB must justify the claims incriminat-
ing several Filipino ofcials
and personalities, includingFirst Gentleman Jose MiguelArroyo and a former senator.“If the World Bank givesme the documents that incrim-inate the First Gentleman or 
any other public ofcial, I will
immediately set a hearing andinvite them. If they don’t ap- pear, I’ll take it a step further and subpoena them,” Santiagowarned.
Miriam wants complete documents on World Bank probe
 Philstar 
For the nth time, Sena-tors Jamby Madrigal and PiaCayetano crossed swords – or is it sharpened claws – over the issue of quorum in thechamber, which a senior sena-tor dismissed as nothing but aquarrel between “brats.”If Senator Madrigal wouldhave her way, she wouldrather have Senator Cayetanoand her younger sibling AlanPeter, along with other mem- bers of the minority, arrestedfor being absent at the sessionespecially when quorum wasneeded to pass legislative
Jamby, Pia in
cat fght anew
Cebu slippers:
 A slipper vendor arranges different kinds of slip- pers in a mall in Cebu City. PhilStar photo by Jonjon Vicencio
 By Liz Cordero-Venecia
We recentlyvisited Lai ThaiRestaurant tocelebrate our wedding anni-versary. A few of my family mem- bers were withus. We alwaysenjoy a pleas-ant dining at LaiThai Restaurantwhich is lo-
 Lai Thai Restaurant on it’s 10th Anniversary
Enjoy its specials on Valentine’s Day
 Nikki Summawadee, owner/manager and her staff at Lai Thai Restaurant.
cated by Seafood City Plaza.Along with other Filipinorestaurants in South Bay,it has gained good reviewswhile under the managementof a fascinating lady NikkiSummawadee, owner/man-
ager and a rst-class chef.
“Even though the econo-my is bad, Lai Thai is help-ing out by keeping it’s prices
 
Page 2February 6 - 12, 2009 Asian Journal - (619) 474-0588 Visit our website at http://www.asianjournalusa.com
Dr. Iem earned her board
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ily Practice in 2008. Being an
advocate of preventative and
alternative medicine, Dr. Iem
practices a full range of fam-ily medicine including minor office procedures and derma-
tologic care. In addition, she is
skilled in Osteopathic Manipu-lative Techniques (OMT). Dr.Iem takes pleasure in seeingall ages, with special empha-
sis in Women’s Health andskin care.
 The Family Physiciansof Escondido
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Tel: 760.747.7512Fax: 760.747.1253
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Dr. Yam received his undergradu-ate degree from UCLA and graduatedmedical school from the PhiladelphiaCollege of Osteopathic Medicine in2002. Dr. Yam completed his intern-ship and residency at Riverside Coun-ty Regional Medical Center where heserved as Chief Resident. Dr. Yam isboard certified with the American Col-lege of Family Medicine and is trainedin Medicine and Gynecology, with spe-cial emphasis in Pediatrics and Wom-
en’s Health, Sports Medicine, and heis skilled in OMT, all delivered with aHolistic approach.
 
Dr. Stephanie Iem and Dr. Ving Yam
Specializing in Holistic Healthcare
 Adult and Pediatric Medicine
Women’s Health
Preventative Care
Dermatologic Care
Sports Medicine
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UST sophomore class of theBachelor of Arts – Bachelor of Sec-ondary Education Major in SocialSciences (ABBSE) of the Universi-ty of Santo Tomas (UST) in Manilaheaded by their section coordinator Assistant Professor Crescencio M.Doma Jr., is currently holding their community exposure for the courseScl 216 – People, Resources andDevelopment in Barangay Rosa-rio, Malinao, Aklan in the Philip- pines. Barrio Rosario, which islocated along the Aklan River, wasone of the communities badly af-
fected by flood brought by typhoon
Frank in June 2008. Consisting
of five groups, the students will
 be conducting research projects inthe community, which will try toexplore on the experiences of theresidents with the disaster, and therecovery process they are currentlyundergoing.Before proceeding to Rosario,the group paid a courtesy call withHonorable Mayor Dominador IlioJr. upon their arrival in Malinao
UST Students Hold Community Exposurein Rosario, Malinao, Aklan, Philippines
town the morning of January 27,2009. Mayor Ilio also provided thestudents some background infor-mation on typhoon Frank’s impacton the town of Malinao. He alsocited the different government and private institutions as well as civicgroups and private individuals who provided assistance to the victimsof typhoon Frank in the municipal-ity. He also stressed that it wasthe people’s collective effort thathelped a lot in the rehabilitation process.Barangay Chairman GregorioImperial Jr. warmly received thestudents in Rosario, and the restof the members of the BarangayCouncil and some of the residents.Foster parents from Rosario whovolunteered to take part in thisregular off-campus activity of thesocial science students of USTwere also around to fetch the stu-dents who will stay with them untilFebruary 3 during the course of theexposure.During their stay in Rosario, thefuture teachers will be conductinginterviews among selected residentsas part of the research requirementof the exposure, which is expectedto provide the students the oppor-tunity to learn from the residentson how they faced the impact of a major disaster such as typhoonFrank. As practiced in the previousresearch activities, the students will present results of their study beforethe residents of Rosario for datavalidation purposes. From Rosario,the group will proceed to Kaliboon February 4, 2009 where theywill be presenting their research
findings in a research colloquium
“Revisiting Rosario, Months After Frank.” The culminating activ-ity of the class will be a ResearchPoster Exhibit at the lobby of St.Raymund’s Bldg. In UST on March2 – 6, 2009 to also share their re-search outputs among the membersof the Thomasian community. Arepresentative from the NationalDisaster Coordinating Council isexpected to grace the event.
TAKIN’ CARE OF BUSINESS  By Babe Romualdez  February 05, 2009, Philstar 
There are a lot of “criminalgeniuses” all over the world, andthey mostly prey on the greed of  people for easy money and quick 
 profit. More likely than not, this
was probably the reason whyLegacy Group owner Celso delos Angeles – called a “crimi-nal genius” by an exasperatedlawmaker – was able to convincea lot of people to deposit their money in his banks, offeringunbelievable interest rates anddangling cellphones, laptopsand even cars as incentive. Of course, these people got theshock of their lives when theserural banks suddenly declared a bank holiday – leaving thousandsof depositors empty handed.What’s worse are subsequentrevelations that the pre-needcompanies by Legacy have alsocollapsed, with 50,000 planholders now left hanging andunsure about the future of their sons and daughters. Apparently,the Legacy Group engaged in pyramiding in its operations, at-tracting investors with an illegal“double your money” operationnot registered with the Securitiesand Exchange Commission andthe Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.A pyramid scheme prom-ises high interest rates to initialinvestors who, more often thannot, are encouraged to convinceothers to invest as well. Un-known to these people, the highinterest rates given to initialinvestors come from the money put in by subsequent investors.Such schemes have been goingon for so long it’s surprising thata lot of people still fall for it,even smart people like Speaker Prospero Nograles who report-edly invested as much as P20million into the Legacy Group.As a matter of fact, the US isfull of “criminal geniuses,” fromCharles Ponzi who is acknowl-
Comments from Manila
 Read previous articles by visiting our website at www.asian- journalusa.com
‘Criminal geniuses’
edged as the “genius” who
 perpetrated this financial fraud,
down to Bernard Madoff whocapitalized on his reputation as
a financial whiz to defraud rich
 businessmen, banks and evenshrewd fund managers of $50 billion. The FBI said Madoff wasable to deceive investors “byoperating a securities business inwhich he traded and lost inves-tor money and then paid certaininvestors purported returns oninvestment with the principalreceived from other, differentinvestors.”A lot of Madoff’svictims come from the eliterich who frequent the exclusiveenclaves of Palm Beach andLong Island, including a high-
flying British fund manager and
a tycoon investor.But what’s worse is when thesecriminal geniuses snitch moneyout of poor people, like the ben-
eficiaries of charitable institu-
tions, schools and even a cancer foundation defrauded by Madoff.Even pension funds have not been spared, with a town in Con-necticut reportedly losing $42million worth of its assets. In thePhilippines, those hardest hit bythe Legacy Group’s bankruptcyinclude depositors and hapless parents who scrimped and savedto buy college educational plansfor their children – who nowmight be facing a bleak future.The world is certainly learningthe hard way that free enterprisedoes not always work, espe-
cially when financial activities
are allowed to go unregulatedand uncontrolled. In the caseof Madoff for instance, the USSecurities and Exchange Com-mission is being sued for neg-ligence and dereliction of dutyfor failing to detect the decep-tion that has been going on for decades. Blame shifting and
finger pointing certainly seems
to be the order of the day, witha fund company going after itsown auditors, blaming them for not detecting the fraud master-minded by Madoff.Of course, the same goes for our own Securities and ExchangeCommission whose chairmangot quite a tongue lashing for theSEC’s alleged inability to safe-guard public interest. Planhold-ers claim they have alerted theSEC as early as 2006 about the problems with Legacy, but noth-ing came out of their complaintsand Legacy was still allowedto sell policies to people. As amatter of fact, the complaining planholders were even reportedlythreatened with libel by De losAngeles.There’s a lot of sense in thesuggestion of legislators for anindependent body that can ef-fectively regulate and control the pre-need industry and make sure
that these firms do not squander 
their trust funds. Whether it’sthe Insurance Commission assome have suggested or someother agency, what’s clear isthat government has to step inand address this long-standing problem that has been bedevilingthe pre-need industry since 2004
when big firms like College As-surance Plans and Pacific Plans
Incorporated (PPI) collapsed.In the case of PPI, however, the300,000 planholders are see-ing a tiny light at the end of thetunnel with the acquisition of the
 pre-need firm by our friend Noel
Oñate. Noel is taking on the roleof a hero – a knight in shiningarmor – trying to give these parents a lifeline by offering toreturn their money plus a 15 per-cent interest. Noel is a maverick who thinks out of the box, andhis track record certainly atteststo the fact that he has the talentto turn adversity into opportu-nity.Of course, holding dialogueswith the plan holders is a step to-wards the right direction becausehe can have them engaged in thenew company’s 10-point action plan to turn the beleagueredcompany around in perhaps twoto three years. If Noel can pullthis one off, then I take my hatoff to him for taking on a noble but nevertheless risky venture.But then again, good karma willsurely come back to him for trying to help these people enjoythe fruit of their hard-earnedinvestment.
 
Page 3 Asian Journal - (619) 474-0588 Visit our website at http://www.asianjournalusa.comFebruary 6 - 12, 2009
left him paralyzed for 10 years. “Butthat didn’t deter him from smok-
ing,” confides Boots. He continued
to smoke two packs of cigarettes aday; and inhale its attendant nicotineand 4,000 chemical and other com- pounds which give a stick of ciga-rette its highs as well as its insidiousdangers. And not even his doctorscould stop him as Pete would reasonout that he had only a few moreyears to enjoy this habit.But unknown to many, Bootsalso lost both her parents to cancer  brought about by their heavy-
smoking. Her father, Oscar Moreno,
dubbed as the Clark Gable of Philip- pine movies, was smoking heavily
until he contracted Miliary Tubercu-
losis in 1985. “After testing positive
for TB, my father didn’t want to
have anything to do with ciga-
rettes,” says Boots. “My mother’s
smoking habit, on the other hand,started when she couldn’t convincemy father to stop. So she decided tosmoke as well until she contractedcancer when she was 71.” Boots’mom passed away 11 months after she was diagnosed with cancer in1991.Boots somehow attributes ciga-rette smoking as a “predisposition to
a lifestyle” influenced by the peoplearound you. Her maternal and
 paternal grandparents are smokers.“What you are exposed to becomesingrained and also becomes partof your lifestyle.” But despite her close proximity to chain-smokers,Boots somehow never developedthe habit. She did smoke at some point in her life, but it was short-lived. “It started when the late direk Lino Brocka asked me to learn howto smoke for a play we were doing,”
Boots recalls. One who is for real-
ism, direk Lino would have noneof Boots’ “inhale, exhale” acting so
she learned how to smoke. “That
started my one to two sticks a daysmoking.” But she only smokedafter meals. Known for playing the
role of the Virgin Mary in several
movies and stage dramas, Boots wasone time smoking a cigarette after a meal with her family inside a res-taurant when she overheard the kids
on the other table said,” Si MamaMary, nagsisigarilyo! (Mama Marysmokes!).” Her family had a big
laugh after that but she also realizedthe kind of impact she makes onother people. “I quit smoking after that incident.”In the case of her late husband,Pete, it was only when he found outthat he had gastric cancer that he
Boots onsmoking hazards
(Continued from page 1)
(Continued on page 18)
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 A vendor who gave his name as ‘Joel’ holds up weeks-old snakes he sells as pets in Caloocan City. PhilStar photo by Jerry Botial  By Jerry Botial 
A vendor who gave his name as‘Joel’ holds up weeks-old snakeshe sells as pets in Caloocan Cityyesterday. Jerry BotialIn Binondo, one can have snakesoup or drink a cup of snake blood.In Caloocan City, chopped snakemeat – some say the texture andtaste closely resembles freshwater 
Snake ‘fish balls,’ anyone?
fish – are reportedly used as aningredient in “fish balls.”“Water pythons, sir. Cheap. They
don’t bite, they don’t have fangs.
Here, touch them,” snake seller Joel,
23, said as he thrust a handful of foot-long, dull gray snakes in thisreporter’s hands.Joel, of Barangay Batungaw inBulacan, Bulacan, said prices rangefrom P50 for the smallest and P200for the longest, all just weeks old.
He said that for as long as he can
remember, residents in their villagehave been catching the snakes for their skin or to make pets of them.“Now that the times are hard, wehave learned to eat them, too, to
fill our bellies,” Joel said, adding
that vendors of street food are also
selling snake meat disguised as “fish
 balls.”Joel said he catches the snakes,which he called “kalabukab,” in themangroves of Bulacan or in local
fishponds.The snakes have a long black line
running the whole length of their 
yellow underbelly. The STAR could
not immediately reach the Depart-ment of Environment and Natural
Resources to confirm the “identity”
of the snakes and whether they areendangered.
On a piece of corrugated card- board, Joel wrote the “specifica-
tions” of his “product:” the snakes
eat fish, crabs, rodents, even house
lizards and cockroaches. When full,the water python will not eat againuntil a month later, he said.
The snakes can grow up to a yard
in length and at least as thick as
three inches across. They can live in
drums, mineral water containers or  buckets, he added.Joel, the father of three childrenaged two, one, and three months,
told The STAR he knows no other  job. He learned the ropes from his
father and has been at it since he
was seven. He said he did not finish
the third grade because his parentshad no money.
On good days, he can sell 30
snakes in 10 hours. Yesterday, he
has been on the street for five hours.Though he has drawn a crowd of 
onlookers, he has sold only onesnake for P50. During lean periods,it takes him three days to sell hisaverage daily catch of 20 snakes.Joel said he has learned to avoidthe police, but did not say if heknows it is illegal to sell snakeswithout a permit.
He said he hopes to sell more
snakes so he and his family can sitdown to a good meal for Christmaseve, snake meat included.

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