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OnMyWay

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Everything posted by OnMyWay

  1. Never again. We arrived at the pier around 3:30 pm for the 6 pm departure. Boarded about 4:30. It is 9:30 pm and we are still here due to cargo loading. So now we are going to arrive very late and our day is screwed. My wife said these delays were mentioned on FB.
  2. It is so hard to change when the "normal" Filipino is used to things being done a certain way. I would bet that supervisors and managers know exactly who is not working, but as long as the worker takes care of the boss, no issues. Lunch, snacks, a bottle once in a while, etc. I worked with a lot of Filipinos at LAX in the 80's, and witnessed it first hand. If interested, here is a good read on favoritism. It is not about the Philippines, but everything mentioned is widespread and accepted in PH. https://www.scu.edu/government-ethics/resources/what-is-government-ethics/favoritism-cronyism-and-nepotism/ What are favoritism, cronyism, and nepotism? As favoritism is the broadest of these related terms, we'll start with its definition. Basically favoritism is just what it sounds like; it's favoring a person not because he or she is doing the best job but rather because of some extraneous feature-membership in a favored group, personal likes and dislikes, etc. Favoritism can be demonstrated in hiring, honoring, or awarding contracts. A related idea is patronage, giving public service jobs to those who may have helped elect the person who has the power of appointment. Favoritism has always been a complaint in government service. In 2002, a survey from the federal government's Office of Personnel Management found that only 36.1 percent of federal workers thought promotions in their work units were based on merit. (Government Executive Magazine, "Playing Favorites," by Brian Friel, October 2004). They believed that connections, partisanship, and other factors played a role. Cronyism is a more specific form of favoritism, referring to partiality towards friends and associates. As the old saying goes, "It's not what you know but who you know," or, as blogger Danny Ferguson put it, "It's not what you don't know; it's who your college roommate knows." Cronyism occurs within a network of insiders-the "good ol' boys," who confer favors on one another. Nepotism is an even narrower form of favoritism. Coming from the Italian word for nephew, it covers favoritism to members of the family. Both nepotism and cronyism are often at work when political parties recruit candidates for public office. What do favoritism, cronyism, and nepotism have to do with ethics? One of the most basic themes in ethics is fairness, stated this way by Artistotle: "Equals should be treated equally and unequals unequally." Favoritism, cronyism, and nepotism all interfere with fairness because they give undue advantage to someone who does not necessarily merit this treatment. In the public sphere, favoritism, cronyism, and nepotism also undermine the common good. When someone is granted a position because of connections rather than because he or she has the best credentials and experience, the service that person renders to the public may be inferior. Also, because favoritism is often covert (few elected officials are foolish enough to show open partiality to friends, and family), this practice undercuts the transparency that should be part of governmental hiring and contracting processes. What ethical dilemmas do favoritism, cronyism, and nepotism present? Probably the biggest dilemma presented by favoritism is that, under various other names, few people see it as a problem. Connections, networking, family-almost everyone has drawn on these sources of support in job hunting in the private spherre. And everyone can point to instances where cronyism or nepotism is an accepted fact of life in political sphere, as well. John F. Kennedy, for example, appointed his brother Robert as attorney general. Every president and governor names close associates to key cabinet positions. Mayors put those they know and trust on citizens committees and commissions. Friends and family can usually be counted on for loyalty, and officeholders are in a good position to know their strengths. So what's the problem? The first issue is competence. For cabinet level positions, an executive will probably be drawn to experienced, qualified candidates, but historically, the lower down the ladder, the more likely for someone's brother-in-law to be slipped into a job for which he is not qualified. The American Civil Service Act was passed in 1883 in large part because so many patronage jobs, down to dogcatcher, were being filled by people whose only qualification for employment was their support for a particular party or candidate. Also, the appearance of favoritism weakens morale in government service, not to mention public faith in the integrity of government. Reasonable people will differ about the appointment of friends and family in high-level positions, but public officials should be aware that such choices can give the appearance of unfairness. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 19 state legislatures have found the practice of nepotism troubling enough to enact laws against it. Others may restrict the hiring of relatives or friends in more general conflict-of-interest rules. Public officials should also note that dilemmas involving favoritism extend beyond hiring and contracting practices to the more general problem of influence. Golfing partners, people who come over for Sunday dinner, members of the same congregation all are likely to exert a greater influence over an official than a stranger might. Council members, mayors, and legislators must make special efforts to ensure that they hear all sides of an issue rather than just relying on the views of the people they know. Further, many conscientious lawmakers have discovered that they must change their patterns of socializing when their work involves many decisions affecting friends and associates. At the least, they may choose to recuse themselves from votes where social relationships may exert undue influence.
  3. The whole story is a very sad commentary on how things probably work at many levels of government here. No accountability at all.
  4. We had my stepdaughter's 18 birthday party at a private resort in Poroc. If you ever need a private resort in that area, you might want to take a look. It is big enough for a wedding but I would only do that in the cool time of the year. We met the owner for an ocular visit a few weeks ago. I think she is married to a foreigner. They built a massive big house on their large property. I didn't go inside but it looks really nice with great quality. Then they added a pool. Then they added a big building next to the pool with a function room / kitchen down and bedrooms up. That is called Casa Gundalina 1. Then more recently, they added Casa Gundalina 2. It just opened in April so everything is brand new. There are two buildings with 4 groups of rooms, really nice pool, a huge function room with kitchen, fridges, tables, etc. The nice thing about it is that if you rent just one section of the rooms, you get the function hall and pool to yourself. We rented one townhouse that sleeps 20 (15k), and a room that sleeps 18 (5k) for my daughter and her friends. You might wonder how they sleep so many, but they really planned it well. They have custom made high quality beds that a queen sized double decked, with a double/queen pullout underneath. The other townhouse is bigger and probably sleeps 25ish.
  5. Why? At 65, I'm itching to get back on the bike, but my hip says no. However, I'm losing weight and hopeful I can reverse my hip pain without surgery. I was addicted from about age 42 to 52. Both road and mountain. Oddly, when I moved to Germany, a very bike friendly place, I almost stopped. I should not have bought the Corvette.
  6. Today, 90.91 for diesel at my usual Petron here in SBFZ. That equates to $7.50 per gallon at today's XE exchange rate, 55.08.
  7. I'm sure one of the oligarchs can fast track production and distribution of the new wallets.
  8. As long as I am ranting on the seatbelts, I will relate a story. I think it was in the 80s, I got a speeding ticket in California. I had the option to go to Traffic School so it would not go on my driving record. We had a really good instructor who was an older police officer. During the seatbelt discussion, he said a lot of people think they can braced themselves when they see impact coming. That might have included young and dumb me! So he said something like: "Imagine a 20 mph crash. Fairly slow, right? How fast can you run? 10 mph? 15 mph? Try this. Run as fast as you can into a brick wall and try to stop yourself with you arms. Good luck! Your arms basically become wet noodles! There is no way you can brace yourself with your wet noodles during a crash!" The wet noodles stuck with me til this day!
  9. C'mon man! Sure, there are exceptional circumstances, but the last thing you want in an accident is to be "thrown". Thrown people get hurt badly. In the case you cite, if the guys was not killed going through the window, he would have had to have been thrown 15-20 feet away from the toppling bus, survived the fall and avoided the other vehicle(s) involved. In the case, of the local truck here, the driver's side is on the top. If he was belted, he might have dangled. If unbelted, he would be thrown all over. In a severe accident, you can be killed either way. From the look of the cab, he may have been belted and still not survived. I'm not a big proponent of the gov telling me what to do, but I do belt up because I know it increases my odds.
  10. XE mid-market is 55.01 right now. Villarica is 54.92. A spread under 10 centavos is a fantastic rate!
  11. In true Filipino fashion, the City of Olongapo has posted pictures of firemen extracting the driver and trying to resuscitate him. They were giving him CPR but I think it was a while before they got him out and started. He had probably been dead for a while. I didn't see evidence of a passenger.
  12. I'm guessing, but I would say the driver might have been the fatality. Think he had a seatbelt on?
  13. Most likely, brake failure. You can't see it in the video, but the section just before he appears in the video is a steep, curvy section. He could have been on the brakes all the way down and lost them near the bottom. A neighbor said that none of these trucks have trailer brakes. Edit: Found that guys post: I have said many times after each accident, trailer brakes, trailer brakes, trailer brakes.... and it appears they are most likely a contributing factor here as well... sometimes training is worth the cost, unless you can get away with the consequences time and time again that is i guess... the investigators might want to start here !
  14. I don't know this guy, but he is mentioned quite frequently on the Angeles Expats FB group. He helps people with insurance issues even if they did not buy the policy from him. The reason for posting here is that if you read the topics, there is a lot of good information about health insurance. https://www.facebook.com/groups/974207416765198
  15. This is very near where I live. The link is a FB post of a CCTV video of the actual accident. https://fb.watch/dVs7h79J_o/
  16. Thanks for the advice! I went to Sabang twice when I was single so I know a bit about it. I thought White Beach might be good now. I'll stick with a resort in Batangas if we go.
  17. Good to know. Thinking about driving to Batangas later this month and going over. If I recall correctly from my two banka trips (20 years ago) it is a short trip, right? They have a fastcraft now? Any resorts you would recommend for a family?
  18. We are travelling Manila to Cebu on MV Maligaya in a few weeks. It is a large, modern ship, built it 2003. I'm monitoring Windy.com, and the winds / weather are looking good. I would cancel if there was a typhoon in the area. We have 2 staterooms for the 17 hour cruise. I'm looking forward to it. https://wanderpinas.com/2go-newest-and-largest-ship-mv-maligaya/
  19. They don't have the bankas from Batangas to Puerta Galera anymore?
  20. Ok, happy reading!
  21. I think he means for walking indoors. SM Aura is probably the only big indoor mall. Venice, Uptown and High St. are mostly outdoors. I think you would do better in an AirBnb.
  22. We last went to the U.S. in 2017 and I was blown away by the prices at McD then. It must be really bad now. This reminded me of The Big Mac Index. I think I first ran across this when I was researching moving to the Philippines. If you look at the table in the link, U.S. the base, is now #3 in the world, which indicates the recent inflation, I think. Before, there were many countries above it. The Philippines is far down the list. This is more about currency valuations, but still interesting. https://www.economist.com/big-mac-index The big mac index was invented by The Economist in 1986 as a lighthearted guide to whether currencies are at their “correct” level. It is based on the theory of purchasing-power parity (PPP), the notion that in the long run exchange rates should move towards the rate that would equalise the prices of an identical basket of goods and services (in this case, a burger) in any two countries. Burgernomics was never intended as a precise gauge of currency misalignment, merely a tool to make exchange-rate theory more digestible. Yet the Big Mac index has become a global standard, included in several economic textbooks and the subject of dozens of academic studies. For those who take their fast food more seriously, we also calculate a gourmet version of the index.
  23. Consider it done. I will keep you posted.
  24. @RBM There are plenty of used ones on Amazon for 5-6 dollars. If you can wait a month or two, I will buy it for you. I'm planning to order some clothes and use Shipping Cart to send them here. Easy to add the book. After the order arrives in a month or two, I'll send it to you on LBC or someone like that.
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