AFP chief reservist urges congress to rethink ROTC bills


QUEZON CITY, Philippines – Col Roland Rodil, AFP chief reservist is not in favor of the four house bills on mandatory ROTC restoration, saying legislations should focus more on support for the program.

“If you enhance the ROTC program, we no longer have to [force] them (students) to enlist,” Rodil said in an interview.

He explained the implications of re-mandating the program among students that are 18 to 25 years old, saying cadets will be abused helplessly.

“Kahit anong abuso, bugbog, paaraw mo sa kanila, kailangan nilang tapusin yan (ROTC). Wala silang magagawa kundi pumasok sa training,” Rodil said.

Mandatory ROTC was abolished in 2002 when congress passed R.A. 9163 that made ROTC among the three options (CWTS and LTS being the other two) for college students’ graduation requirements.

Four House Bills calling for the amendment of R.A. 9163 (NSTP Law) and the restoration of mandatory ROTC training were referred to the House Committee on National Defense and Security and is still pending there since July 23, 2013.

The authors of the said bills are Representatives Gerald Abaya (H.B. No. 144), Rodolfo Biazon (H.B. No. 522), Erico Aumentado (H.B. No. 1720) and Sherwin Gatchalian (H.B. No. 5338), all of whom promotes mandatory ROTC.

Contemporaneous improvement, not force

 Rodil urges the Congressmen to focus their legislations in supporting the ROTC program’s improvement and not by forcing students to enlist.

“If I were those legislators, I would file a bill that makes our program viable and not one that defiles the students’s freedom of choice,” Rodil contended.

Rodil, in comparison to other countries that do not require adults to enlist for ROTC, said that the Philippines can have well-trained reserves without forcing them into the Armed Forces’s manpower.

“The United States does not mandate ROTC training, but they have efficient allocation for resources in the training program–they are now known as a superpower,” Rodil stated.

He also added that legislative support on the program will have a better reception from students.

“Allocate funds, give away incentives to students, provide better resources without forcing students to enlist and you will have your bill passed,” Rodil assured.

Corruption and Abuse BLOG2

Rodil pointed out that one of the main issues that delayed the bills’s passing is the resistance among students.

“Such resistance will not buy them enough votes for the bill to be passed,” Rodil stated, explaining that its passing will only generate more issues against the government.

According to Philippine Collegian’s news report on the re-mandating of ROTC, League of Filipino Students (LFS) national chairperson Terry Ridon denounced the said bills, saying the revival of mandatory ROTC program will also reinstate corruption and physical abuse that led to the abolition of the course more than a decade ago.

“ROTC as an institution is the problem, not merely the persons running it,” Ridon said in a statement.

Rodil, also a former commandant of the UP Diliman’s Department of Military Science and Tactics addressed the UP-LFS’s denouncement of the ROTC bills, saying student organizations should not be the only ones aware of the existence of the bills.

“There is also a problem among students, kaunti lang ang nakakaalam na may chance na maisabak sila sa unjustifiable training na wala silang magagawa kundi pasukan,” Rodil expressing dismay over the deficit of awareness.

Shortage on resources

Aside from external challenges on the bills’s passing, Rodil also addressed the deficiencies of ROTC as a program today.

“If we really take ROTC seriously, we should then address the shortages of resources and the mediocrity of the training program,” Rodil expressed.

He expounded on the ROTC units’s shortages on training rifles, ammunition, official uniforms for cadets, among other ‘vital’ training resources that the government cannot provide.

“Kung mandatory at walang resource, ‘edi hindi puwersa ang dinagdag natin, [ang dinagdag natin] puro pang disaster management, taga linis ng sewer at mga puro papicture nalang sa mga tangke,” Rodil exclaimed.

Free ROTC training

 Rodil also pointed out that students pay too much for the NSTP fees, saying ROTC training should be free.

“Students should not pay for the training given na yung gobyerno naman ang makikinabang sa pagte-train nila,” Rodil asserted.

He added that the government should also subsidize all expenses in private institutions, saying the students are paying the school for education, not military training.

“The ROTC cadets should not pay the school because it is not the school who will benefit from the program,” Rodil explained.

According to Col Rodil’s thesis on transforming ROTC’s program, the average payment for ROTC fees range from PhP 2,000 to 3,000–not inclusive of the uniforms and field training fees.

Better program as a leverage to West PH sea claims

Col Rodil also said that improving the ROTC program without forcing students to enlist will raise our stakes over the West Philippine Sea disputes against China.

“You will have more competent cadets, because they will be willing and their training is considerably threatening to challengers of our national safety,” Rodil asserted.

But Rodil also added that given our program’s deficiency on proper training and resources, there might be ‘massive deaths’ among cadets when war comes.

“Madami ka ngang reserba, wala namang sapat na training, the government should never put their men in harm’s way knowing na massacre ang mangyayari,” Rodil argued.

The only problem remaining

The AFP reservist also stated that mandating ROTC enlistment will only raise many issues against the government, even saying it was a “mistake” to mandate in in the first place.

“Although I am a product of the mandatory ROTC era, I still think students should be free from physical and emotional abuse,” Rodil said.

Rodil also said that if students are encouraged through a better program with scholarships and enough training resources, the government and the Armed Forces no longer needs to force recruitment.

“The only problem that we will have is we cannot accept cadets anymore because of the growing number of enlisters,” Rodil claimed. Neil Jayson Servallos






Popular Catchphrases

  1. As every schoolboy knows – used before mentioning a fact that is familiar to everyone, including children.
  2. To put on a back burner – to be of low priority or temporary deferment.
  3. Back to square one – back to where one started, with no progress having been made.
  4. Ballpark figure – an estimate; an off-the-cuff guess.
  5. To laugh all the way to the bank -to be very happy about money that has been earned by doing something that other people might think is unfair orthat they criticized.
  6. Beer and sandwiches
  7. As the bishop said to the actress – changes whatever has been said before it into an innuendo
  8. Blood, sweat and tears – extremely hard work; unstinting effort.
  9. Bone to pick – to want to talk to someone about something they have done that has annoyed you.
  10. The buck stops here – “passing blame”, or absolving oneself of responsibility or concern by denying authority or jurisdiction over a given matter.
  11. To bite the bullet – to endure a painful or otherwise unpleasant situation that is seen as unavoidable.
  12. Catch-22 situation – A situation in which a desired outcome or solution is impossible to attain because of a set of inherently contradictory rules or conditions
  13. Cut your coat according to your cloth meanstoplan one’s aims and activities in line with one’s resources and
  14. Cock-and-bull story – an absurd, improbable story presented as the truth
  15. Corridors of power Theplaces or positions from which people in authority wield
  16. Between the devil and the deep blue sea – to choose between two undesirable situations
  17. Dog days of summer – It’s the portion of summer known as the hottest time of the year.
  18. Bite the dust – to break; to fail; to give out or to die.
  19. Feather on one’s cap – a praiseworthy accomplishment; distinction; honor
  20. Take a French leave – “leave of absence without permission or without announcing one’s departure”
  21. Jump out of the frying pan into the fire – escaping a bad situation for a worse situation.
  22. Iron lady – used to describe other femaleheads of governmentor political figures, even retrospectively.
  23. Land of Nod – animaginaryland of sleep
  24. Mother of all battles – referring to the biggest amoung of something (e.g. mother of all parties, mother of all beatings, etc.)
  25. Not worth a tinker’s damn – to have or feel little or no concern; be unaffected or unmoved
  26. Oil on troubled waters – Tocalm something or someone who is tenacious or misbehaving
  27. As old as Methuselah – used to say that someone is very old
  28. Old-boy network – an exclusive network that links members of a profession, social class, or organization or the alumni of a particular school through which the individuals assist one another in business, politics, etc.
  29. Over a barrel –out ofone’scontrol; in a
  30. Take a rain check – said when politely refusing an offer, with the implication that one may accept it at a later date.
  31. See through rose-tinted spectacles – selective perception of a collective aspect/object; seeing the good side only.
  32. Cross the Rubicon – means to pass apoint of no return, and refers toJulius Caesar’s army’s crossing of the Rubicon River
  33. Rule of thumb – aprinciplewith broad application that is not intended to be strictly accurate or reliable for every situation
  34. With a pinch of salt meanstolistento a story or an explanation with considerable
  35. Send in the clowns – to reinforce support when things go wrong.
  36. Serious money – extreme or remarkable
  37. Skeleton in the closet – used to describe an undisclosed fact about someone which, if revealed, would have a negative impact on perceptions of the person
  38. Cast the first stone – to be the first to condemn or blame a wrongdoer; be hasty in one’s judgment
  39. Talk turkey-totalk business;to talk frankly
  40. Teddy-bear syndrome – “If I can’t have it, then no one can” mentality.
  41. By the skin of one’s teeth – just barely;Bythe smallest
  42. As thick as thieves – veryclose-knit; friendly;
  43. Turn the tables – tocausea reversal in someone’s plans; to make one’s plans turn back on
  44. Where’s the beef? – questioning the substance of an idea, event or product.
  45. White man’s burden – theallegedduty of the white race to care for subject peoples of other races in its colonial
  46. On a wing and a prayer – In poor condition, but just managing to get the job done.
  47. Writing on the wall – thelikelihoodthat something bad will
  48. Wrong side of the tracks – the poor side of town.
  49. The first seven years are the hardest – suggests that everything declines after seven years.
  50. You’ve never had it so good – have never had so much good


Foreign Words and Phrases you should know!

There are many foreign words, phrases and classical references used in current English. To cite some are:

  1. A cappella – without instrumental music
  2. A fortiori – with greater reason or more convincing force —used in drawing a conclusion that is inferred to be even more certain than another
  3. A la (à la) – in the style of
  4. A la carte – with a separate price for each item on the menu
  5. A la mode  – topped with ice cream; stylish or fashionable
  6. A posteriori – relating to what can be known by observation rather than through an understanding of how certain things work
  7. A priori – relating to what can be known through an understanding of how certain things work rather than by observation
  8. Ab initio  – from the beginning
  9. Accoutrement – a piece of clothing or equipment that is used in a particular place or for a particular activity
  10. Achilles heel – a fault or weakness that causes or could cause someone or something to fail
  11. Ad hoc  – for the particular end or case at hand without consideration of wider application
  12. Ad hominem (usage) – appealing to feelings or prejudices rather than intellect; marked by or being an attack on an opponent’s character rather than by an answer to the contentions made
  13. Ad infinitum – without an end or limit
  14. Ad lib(itum) – in accordance with one’s wishes; without restraint or limit
  15. Ad nauseam – to a sickening or excessive degree
  16. Adonis  – a very handsome young man
  17. Aegis – the power to protect, control, or support something or someone
  18. Affidavit – a written report which is signed by a person who promises that the information is true
  19. Aficionado  – a person who likes and knows a lot about something
  20. Agent provocateur – a person employed to encourage people to break the law so that they can be arrested
  21. Agitprop – political propaganda promulgated chiefly in literature, drama, music, or art
  22. Aide memoire  – an aid to the memory; especially :  a mnemonic device; a written summary or outline of important items of a proposed agreement or diplomatic communication
  23. Alfresco – in the open air
  24. Alibi – an excuse usually intended to avert blame or punishment
  25. Alpha and omega – the beginning and ending
  26. Ambiance – the mood or feeling of a particular place
  27. Amok – a murderous frenzy that has traditionally been regarded as occurring especially in Malaysian culture
  28. Amour proper – self-esteem
  29. Anathema – someone or something that is very strongly disliked
  30. Ancien regime – a system or mode no longer prevailing
  31. Annus horribilis – a disastrous or unfortunate year
  32. Annus mirabilis  – a remarkable or notable year
  33. Ante – cost, price; risk, stakes
  34. Ante bellum – occurring in the southern U.S. during the time before the American Civil War
  35. Aphrodisiac – something (such as a food, drink, or drug) that causes or increases sexual desire
  36. Apropos – at an opportune time :  seasonably; by way of interjection or further comment :  with regard to the present topic
  37. Attaché – a person who works at an embassy as an expert on a particular subject
  38. Au contraire – on the contrary
  39. Au courant – knowing about the newest information, trends, etc.; stylish or current
  40. Au fait – to the point :  fully competent :  fully informed :  socially correct
  41. Au naturel – in a natural state
  42. Avant-garde – a group of people who develop new and often very surprising ideas in art, literature, etc.
  43. Bar mitzvah and bat mitzvah – the former is a ceremony and celebration for a Jewish boy on his 13th birthday when he takes on the religious duties and responsibilities of an adult; the latter is a ceremony and celebration for a Jewish girl usually on her 13th birthday when she takes on the religious duties and responsibilities of an adult
  44. Belle vs beau – the former is a noun for a gorgeous female, sometimes signified as the most gorgeous at a particular gathering; the latter is French and literally means handsome or beautiful in the masculine form.
  45. Berserk – one whose actions are recklessly defiant
  46. Bête noire – a person or thing that someone dislikes very much
  47. Blitz – a military attack in which many bombs are dropped from airplanes; a fast and powerful effort
  48. Blitzkrieg – a sudden and overwhelming military attack; a fast and powerful effort
  49. Bona fide, bona fides – the former means made or carried out in good faith or real or genuine; the latter means good faith, or credentials
  50. Bourgeois, bourgeoisie –the former means middle class person; the latter denotes the middle class as a whole, rather than just a middle-class person.
  51. Caesar’s wife – someone who is pure and honest in moral
  52. Canard – a false report or story : a belief or rumor that is not true
  53. Capiche, capeesh, capische, etc – (interjection) Do you understand?
  54. Carte blanche – permission to do something in any way you choose to do it
  55. Casus belli – an event or action that justifies or allegedly justifies a war or conflict
  56. Cause célèbre – a legal case or an event that a lot of people become interested in
  57. Caveat – a modifying or cautionary detail to be considered when evaluating, interpreting, or doing something; a legal warning to a judicial officer to suspend a proceeding until the opposition has a hearing
  58. C’est la vie –  that’s life :  that’s how things happen
  59. Ceteris paribus – if all other relevant things, factors, or elements remain unaltered
  60. Comme ci, comme ça – neither very good nor very bad; so-so
  61. Confidant vs. confidante – a trusted friend you can talk to about (conFIDANT); a woman who is a trusted friend (conFID
  62. Cordon sanitaire – a protective barrier (as of buffer states)
  63. Corpus delicti – the substantial and fundamental fact
  64. Coup d’état – a sudden decisive exercise of force in
  65. Coup de foudre – a sudden unforeseen event; love at first sight
  66. Coup de grace – a death blow administered to
  67. Crème de la crème – the very best
  68. Cri de Coeur – a passionate outcry
  69. Crise de conscience – agonizing period of moral uncertainty
  70. Cui bono? – to whose advantage?
  71. Cul de sac – a street that is designed to connect to another street only at one end
  72. Cum – along with being
  73. Danse macabre – dance of death
  74. De facto – in reality
  75. De jure – based on laws of the state
  76. De mortuis nil nisi bonum – to speak ill of the dead
  77. De rigueur – prescribed or required by fashion, etiquette or custom?
  78. Debacle – a great disaster or failure
  79. Déjà vu – a feeling that one has seen or heard something before
  80. Demeanor – behavior towards others
  81. Deo volente – God be willing
  82. Delphic (typically of a pronouncement) deliberately obscure or ambiguous.
  83. Dictum – a noteworthy statement
  84. Diktat – an order that must be followed
  85. Divorcée, divorcé, divorcee – a divorced woman
  86. Dolce vita – a life of indolence and self-indulgence
  87. Doppelgänger – a ghostly counterpart of a living person
  88. Double entendre – a word or expression capable of two interpretations
  89. Dragon’s teeth – seeds of strife
  90. Dreidel – a 4-sided toy marked with Hebrew letters and spun like a top in a game of chance
  91. Drivel – to talk in a very foolish or silly way
  92. Du jour – happening or popular at a particular time
  93. g. vs. i.e. – for example (e.g.); that is (i.e.)
  94. En masse – as a single group
  95. En route – on or along the way when you are going to a place
  96. En vogue, in vogue – something fashinable
  97. Entente cordiale  –a friendly agreement
  98. Ergo – therefore
  99. Erratum – error
  100. Ersatz – copied from something else and usually not as good as the original
  101. Esprit de corps – feeling of loyalty to a group among people who are members of the group
  102. Et al. – and others
  103. Et cetera (etc.) – a number of unspecified additional persons or things
  104. Ex officio – because of your job, position
  105. Ex post facto –with retroactive effect or force.
  106. Fabian tactics  – cautious tactics
  107. Fait accompli – something that has been done and cannot be changed
  108. Fatwah – a legal opinion handed down by an Islamic religion leader
  109. Faux pas – an embarrassing social mistake
  110. Femme fatale – a very attractive woman who causes trouble for the men who became involved with her
  111. Fiancé vs. fiancée – a man engaged to be married (fiancé); a woman engaged to be married (fiancée)
  112. Floreat – a group of flower buds that are part of a vegetable
  113. Force majeure – a superior or irresistible force
  114. Forte – one’s strong point
  115. Futz vs putz – fool around (futz); stupid or worthless person (putz)
  116. Gaudeamus – let us rejoice
  117. Gesundheit – used to wish good health to someone who has sneezed
  118. Jist – the common phonetic spelling of a United States Southerner’s way of saying ‘just’
  119. Gordian knot – an extremely difficult or involved problem.
  120. Gung-ho –  adapted from a Chinese phrase that means, literally, work together
  121. Habeas corpus – Latin loan phrase meaning, literally, “you shall have the body.”
  122. Halcyon days – Calm, peaceful days.
  123. Hara-kiri –  ritual suicide by disembowelment practiced by the Japanese samurai or formerly decreed by a court in lieu of the death penalty
  124. Hippocratic oath – oath historically taken by physicians
  125. Hoi polloi – an expression from Greek that means the many or, in the strictest sense, the majority
  126. Honoris causa – (Latin: “for the sake of the honor”) is an academic degree for which a university has waived the usual requirements, such as matriculation, residence, study and the passing of examinations.
  127. Ibid vs idem – Ibid is an abbreviation of ibidem, a Latin word that means, literally, in the same place. Idem is also Latin, literally meaning the same.
  128. Imbroglio – a big mess of people or ideas, a complicated fight, or detailed scandal.
  129. Impasse – a situation in which no progress is possible, especially because of disagreement; a deadlock
  130. Imprimatur – an official licence issued by the Roman Catholic Church to print an ecclesiastical or religious book.
  131. In absentia – while not present at the event being referred to
  132. In extremis – in an extremely difficult situation.
  133. In memoriam – an article written in memory of a dead person; an obituary
  134. In toto – as a whole
  135. In vino veritas – under the influence of alcohol, a person tells the truth
  136. Incognito – having one’s true identity concealed
  137. Inter alia – among other things
  138. Interim – the intervening time
  139. Iota – an extremely small amoun
  140. Ipso facto – Latin for itself fact. In English, we use it as an adverb meaning by that very fact.
  141. Je ne sais quoi  – French for “I know not what.
  142. Kamikaze – reckless or potentially self-destructive
  143. Kaput – broken and useless; no longer working or effective
  144. Kowtow – to kneel and touch the forehead to the ground in expression of respect, worship, or submission
  145. Laissez-faire – the French loanword laissez faire has two main definitions: (1) the principle that government should not control business, and (2) the wish not to control others.
  146. Lingua franca – also known as a bridge language, trade language or vehicular language, is a language systematically used to make communication possible between persons not sharing a native language, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both native languages.
  147. Magnum opus – a great achievement—usually a great work of art, and especially one that is the single greatest work of someone’s artistic career
  148. Mandamus – Latin for “we order,” a writ which orders a public agency or governmental body to perform an act required by law when it has neglected or refused to do so.
  149. Mea culpa – Latin for through my own fault
  150. Memento mori – something, especially an object, that serves as a reminder of mortality
  151. Mens sana in corpora sano – a sound mind in a sound body.
  152. Mensch – refers to a decent, admirable person with many good qualities
  153. Midas touch – turned anything to gold
  154. Milieu – refers to a social environment, or sometimes more generally to any environment or location.
  155. Modus operandi (m.o, MO) – Latin for way of working
  156. Modus Vivendi  – way of living
  157. Monibus – latin term ‘omnibus’ mispelled, meaning all
  158. Moratorium – a temporary prohibition of an activity
  159. Muumuu – modern spelling of the noun referring to the loose unbelted dress
  160. Nebbish – primarily a noun referring to a weak-willed or feckless person, usually male and especially one who is socially inept and lacks self-confidence.
  161. Noblese oblige – French phrase literally meaning “Nobility obliges”.
  162. Noel or nowel – Noel, when capitalized is another name for Christmas. Nowel is the piece of a mold in the center which will make the final product hollow, or the lowermost part of a mold.
  163. Nom de plume  – pseudonym adopted by an author.
  164. Non sequitur  – pseudonym adopted by an author.
  165. Nota bene  – note well
  166. Nouveau riche – a term used to describe those whose wealth has been acquired either within their own generation or that of their parents.
  167. Nunchucks – For the word denoting the Okinawan weapon made of two sticks linked by a short chain or rope, nunchucks is by far the most common form in 21st-century English.
  168. Omerta  – a cultural expression and code of honor that places legitimate importance on a deep-rooted family sense of a code of silence, non-aggravation with authorities, and non-interference in the legal actions of others.
  169. Pandora’s box – an artifact in Greek mythology, taken from the myth of Pandora’s creation in Hesiod’s Works and Days.
  170. Papabile  – worthy of being or eligible to be pope.
  171. Par excellence – better or more than all others of the same kind. – meaning per day, is used in English to mean by the day, per day, reckoned on a daily basis, or paid by the day.
  172. Per diem – meaning per day, is used in English to mean by the day, per day, reckoned on a daily basis, or paid by the day.
  173. Per se – by, of, for, or in itself
  174. Persona non grata  – an unacceptable or unwelcome person
  175. Platonic – (of love or friendship) intimate and affectionate but not sexual.
  176. Pooh-bah – a person who has a lot of power in government, usually by holding several positions or offices at the same time.
  177. Prima facie – at first sight
  178. Primus inter pares – first among equals
  179. Pro bono  – denoting work undertaken for the public good without charge, especially legal work for a client with a low income
  180. Pro forma – as a matter of form or politeness
  181. Pro patria  – for one’s country
  182. Pros and cons  – the favorable and the unfavorable factors or reasons; advantages and disadvantages
  183. Protégé  – a person under the patronage, protection, or care of someone interested in his or her career or welfare.
  184. Proviso – a condition attached to an agreement
  185. Quasi – apparently, but not really; being partly or almost
  186. Quid pro quo – an exchange of goods or services, where one transfer is contingent upon the other
  187. Quorum – the minimum number of members of an assembly or society that must be present at any of its meetings to make the proceedings of that meeting valid
  188. RAIP/requiescat in pace – a short epitaph or idiomatic expression wishing eternal rest and peace to someone who has died
  189. Raison d’être – the most important reason or purpose for someone or something’s existence
  190. Realpolitik – a system of politics or principles based on practical rather than moral or ideological considerations
  191. Repertoire or repertory – the performance of various plays, operas, or ballets by a company at regular short intervals
  192. Requiem – a Mass for the repose of the souls of the dead
  193. Restaurateur  – a person who owns and manages a restaurant
  194. Résumé – a brief account of a person’s education, qualifications, and previous experience, typically sent with a job application
  195. Rite de passage – ceremonies that mark important transitional periods in a person’s life, such as birth, puberty, marriage, having children, and death
  196. Sang froid – composure or coolness, sometimes excessive, as shown in danger or under trying circumstances
  197. Sans – without
  198. Savoir faire – the ability to act or speak appropriately in social situations
  199. Schadenfreude – pleasure derived by someone from another person’s misfortune.
  200. Schmuck – a foolish or contemptible person.
  201. Shtick  – a gimmick, comic routine, style of performance, etc., associated with a particular person.
  202. Sic – used in brackets after a copied or quoted word that appears odd or erroneous to show that the word is quoted exactly as it stands in the original
  203. Simpatico – likeable and easy to get along with
  204. Sine die  – with no appointed date for resumption
  205. Sine qua non – an essential condition
  206. Skullduggery – underhanded or unscrupulous behavior; trickery.
  207. Smorgasbord – a wide range of something; variety
  208. Socratic – of or relating to Socrates or his philosophy.
  209. Spartan  – showing the indifference to comfort or luxury traditionally associated with ancient Sparta
  210. Sphinx – an enigmatic or inscrutable person.
  211. Status quo – the existing state of affairs, especially regarding social or political issues
  212. Stet – let it stand
  213. Stoic – a person who can endure pain or hardship without showing their feelings or complaining
  214. Sub judice  – under judicial consideration and therefore prohibited from public discussion elsewhere
  215. Sub rosa  – happening or done in secret
  216. Subpoena – a writ ordering a person to attend a court
  217. Sui generis – unique
  218. Summa cum laude or magna cum laude  – with the highest distinction
  219. Tabula rasa – an absence of preconceived ideas or predetermined goals; a clean slate
  220. Take the mickey out of someone – make fun of someone
  221. Terra firma – dry land; the ground as distinct from the sea or air
  222. Tete-a-tete – a private conversation between two people
  223. Toilette – the process of washing oneself, dressing, and attending to one’s appearance
  224. Touché or touché  – used to acknowledge a hit in fencing or the success or appropriateness of an argument, an accusation, or a witty point
  225. Tour de force – an impressive performance or achievement that has been accomplished or managed with great skill
  226. Triumvirate – a group of three powerful or notable people or things existing in relation to each other.
  227. Troika – a group of three people working together, especially in an administrative or managerial capacity
  228. Trojan – of or relating to ancient Troy in Asia Minor.
  229. Trojan horse – a person or thing intended secretly to undermine or bring about the downfall of an enemy or opponent
  230. Uber – denoting an outstanding or supreme example of a particular kind of person or thing
  231. Ultra vires – beyond one’s legal power or authority
  232. Vamoose – depart hurriedly
  233. Verbatim – in exactly the same words as were used originally
  234. Verklempt – emotionally inhibited in a convulsive way
  235. Vice versa – with the main items in the preceding statement the other way around
  236. Vis-a-vis – in relation to
  237. Viva voce – oral rather than written
  238. Viz – namely; in other words
  239. Voilà  – used to call attention; express satisfaction or approval
  240. Vox populi – the opinions or beliefs of the majority
  241. Whirling dervish – a person whose behavior resembles a rapid, spinning object
  242. Wunderkind – a person who achieves great success when relatively young
  243. Zeitgeist – the defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas and beliefs of the time





300 Smart Words for Journalists


Being in line with a work where choice of words matter, Journalists should know how to manipulate their way around constructing sentences. Smart words are not necessarily pre-requisites in efficient writing, but it would not hurt to have some in one’s pocket. Although smart words are not necessarily highfalutin, it should still be considered that its usage should not compromise the idea of the write-up and your tone as a writer. Here are some examples of smart words and phrases one should use:

  1. Abate – cause to become smaller or lessen intensity or widespread
  2. Aberrant – Deviating from what is considered proper, normal or typical
  3. Abeyance – temporary inactivity, cessation, or suspension
  4. Abscond- to depart in a sudden and secret manner, especially to avoid capture and legal prosecution
  5. Abstemious – not self-indulgent, especially when eating and drinking
  6. Admonish – warn or reprimand someone firmly
  7. Adulterate – render something poorer in quality by adding another substance, typically an inferior one
  8. Aesthetic – concerned with beauty or the appreciation of beauty
  9. Aggregate – a whole formed by combining several (typically disparate) elements
  10. Alacrity – brisk and cheerful readiness
  11. Alleviate – make less severe
  12. Amalgamate – combine or unite to form one organization or structure
  13. Ambiguous – unclear or inexact
  14. Ambivalence – the state of having mixed feelings or contradictory ideas about something or someone
  15. Ameliorate – make better
  16. Anachronism – a thing that is conspicuously old-fashioned
  17. Analogous – comparable in certain respects
  18. Anomalous – deviating from what is standard, normal, or expected
  19. Antipathy – a deep-seated feeling of dislike
  20. Apathy – lack of interest, enthusiasm, or concern
  21. Antipathy – a deep-seated feeling of dislike
  22. Appease – pacify or relieve or prevent from happening
  23. Apprise – inform or tell someone
  24. Approbation – approval or praise
  25. Appropriate – suitable or proper in the circumstances (noun); designate (verb)
  26. Arduous – requiring much effort
  27. Artless – without guile or deception or effort
  28. Ascetic – a person who practices severe self-discipline and abstention.
  29. Assiduous – showing great care and perseverance
  30. Assuage – make an unpleasant feeling less intense
  31. Attenuate – reduce the force, effect, or value of
  32. Audacious – showing a willingness to take surprisingly bold risks
  33. Austere – severe or strict in manner
  34. Autonomous – acting independently
  35. Aver – state or assert to be the case
  36. Banal – so lacking in originality as to be obvious and boring
  37. Belie – fail to give a true notion or impression of
  38. Beneficent – generous or doing good
  39. Bolster – support or strengthen
  40. Bombastic – high-sounding but with little meaning
  41. Boorish – rough and bad-mannered
  42. Burgeon – begin to grow or increase rapidly
  43. Burnish – polish by rubbing
  44. Buttress – increase the strength of or justification for
  45. Cacophonous – involving or producing a harsh
  46. Capricious – given to sudden and unaccountable changes of mood or behavior
  47. Castigation – reprimand (someone) severely
  48. Catalyst – a person or thing that precipitates an event
  49. Caustic – sarcastic in a scathing and bitter way
  50. Chicanery – the use of trickery to achieve a political, financial, or legal purpose
  51. Coagulate – change to a solid or semisolid state
  52. Coda-the concluding passage of a piece or movement, typically forming an addition to the basic structure.
  53. Cogent- (of an argument or case) clear, logical, and convincing.
  54. Commensurate- corresponding in size or degree; in proportion
  55. Compendium- a collection of concise but detailed information about a particular subject, especially in a book or other publication.
  56. Complaisant- willing to please others; obliging; agreeable
  57. Compliant- inclined to agree with others or obey rules, especially to an excessive degree
  58. Conciliatory- intended or likely to placate or pacify
  59. Condone- accept and allow (behavior that is considered morally wrong or offensive) to continue
  60. Confound-cause surprise or confusion in (someone), especially by acting against their expectations
  61. Connoisseur- an expert judge in matters of taste
  62. Cumbersome- large or heavy and therefore difficult to carry or use; unwieldy
  63. Debilitate- make (someone) weak and infirm
  64. Decorum- behavior in keeping with good taste and propriety
  65. Deduce- arrive at (a fact or a conclusion) by reasoning; draw as a logical conclusion
  66. Déjà vu- a feeling of having already experienced the present situation
  67. Deify- worship, regard, or treat (someone or something) as a god
  68. Delectable- (of food or drink) delicious
  69. Demure- (of a woman or her behavior) reserved, modest, and shy
  70. Deplorable- deserving strong condemnation
  71. Dialectic- the art of investigating or discussing the truth of opinions.
  72. Dichotomy- a division or contrast between two things that are or are represented as being opposed or entirely different
  73. Eclectic- deriving ideas, style, or taste from a broad and diverse range of sources
  74. Eccentric- (of a person or their behavior) unconventional and slightly strange
  75. Elicit- evoke or draw out (a response, answer, or fact) from someone in reaction to one’s own actions or questions
  76. Elusive- difficult to find, catch, or achieve
  77. Emanate- (of something abstract but perceptible) issue or spread out from (a source)
  78. Enigmatic- difficult to interpret or understand; mysterious
  79. En masse- in a group; all together
  80. Endemic- (of a disease or condition) regularly found among particular people or in a certain area
  81. Eradicate- destroy completely; put an end to
  82. Evasive- tending to avoid commitment or self-revelation, especially by responding only indirectly
  83. Faux Pas- an embarrassing or tactless act or remark in a social situation.
  84. Fiasco- a thing that is a complete failure, especially in a ludicrous or humiliating way
  85. Futility- pointlessness or uselessness
  86. Fortuitous- happening by accident or chance rather than design
  87. Formidable- inspiring fear or respect through being impressively large, powerful, intense, or capable
  88. Fractious- (typically of children) irritable and quarrelsome
  89. Funereal- having the mournful, somber character appropriate to a funeral
  90. Fledging- (of a young bird) develop wing feathers that are large enough for flight.
  91. Fidelity- faithfulness to a person, cause, or belief, demonstrated by continuing loyalty and support
  92. Flippant- not showing a serious or respectful attitude
  93. Galvanize- shock or excite (someone), typically into taking action
  94. Gamut- the complete range or scope of something
  95. Gargantuan- enormous
  96. Globular- globe-shaped; spherical.
  97. Gormandize- indulge in good eating; eat greedily.
  98. Grandeur- splendor and impressiveness, especially of appearance or style
  99. Gradation- a scale or a series of successive changes, stages, or degrees
  100. Gregarious- (of a person) fond of company; sociable

Gratuitous- uncalled for; lacking good reason; unwarranted

  1. Halcyon- denoting a period of time in the past that was idyllically happy and peaceful
  2. Haphazard- lacking any obvious principle of organization
  3. Hapless- (especially of a person) unfortunate
  4. Herculean- requiring great strength or effort
  5. Hiatus- a pause or gap in a sequence, series, or process
  6. Ignoble- not honorable in character or purpose
  7. Ignominious- deserving or causing public disgrace or shame
  8. Illicit- forbidden by law, rules, or custom
  9. Impasse- a situation in which no progress is possible, especially because of disagreement; a deadlock
  10. Impertinent- not showing proper respect; rude
  11. Jocular- fond of or characterized by joking; humorous or playful
  12. Jettison- throw or drop (something) from an aircraft or ship
  13. Jejune- naive, simplistic, and superficial
  14. Juxtapose- place or deal with close together for contrasting effect
  15. Jingoistic- extreme patriotism, especially in the form of aggressive or warlike foreign policy
  16. Kibosh- put an end to; dispose of decisively
  17. Kinetic- of, relating to, or resulting from motion
  18. Kudos- praise and honor received for an achievement.
  19. Keynote- a prevailing tone or central theme, typically one set or introduced at the start of a conference
  20. Kinesiology- the study of the mechanics of body movements.
  21. Laconic- (of a person, speech, or style of writing) using very few words
  22. Laggard- a person who makes slow progress and falls behind others
  23. Lascivious- (of a person, manner, or gesture) feeling or revealing an overt and often offensive sexual desire
  24. Latent- (of a quality or state) existing but not yet developed or manifest; hidden; concealed
  25. Lethargic- affected by lethargy; sluggish and apathetic
  26. Levity- humor or frivolity, especially the treatment of a serious matter with humor or in a manner lacking due respect
  27. Liaison- communication or cooperation that facilitates a close working relationship between people or organizations
  28. Loquacious- tending to talk a great deal; talkative.
  29. Ludicrous- so foolish, unreasonable, or out of place as to be amusing; ridiculous
  30. Lucid- expressed clearly; easy to understand
  31. Malignant- (of a disease) very virulent or infectious.
  32. Maniacal- a person exhibiting extreme symptoms of wild behavior, especially when violent and dangerous
  33. Masticate- chew (food).
  34. Maverick- an unorthodox or independent-minded person
  35. Mawkish- sentimental in a feeble or sickly way
  36. Megalomania- obsession with the exercise of power, especially in the domination of others.
  37. Mendacious- not telling the truth; lying
  38. Mesmerize- hold the attention of (someone) to the exclusion of all else or so as to transfix them
  39. Misconstrue- interpret (something, especially a person’s words or actions) wrongly
  40. Mnemonic- a device such as a pattern of letters, ideas, or associations that assists in remembering something.
  41. Narcissistic- having an excessive or erotic interest in oneself and one’s physical appearance
  42. Narcolepsy- a condition characterized by an extreme tendency to fall asleep whenever in relaxing surroundings.
  43. Nascent- (especially of a process or organization) just coming into existence and beginning to display signs of future potential
  44. Nefarious- (typically of an action or activity) wicked or criminal
  45. Ne plus ultra- the perfect or most extreme example of its kind; the ultimate
  46. Noblesse Oblige- the nobility.
  47. Nocturnal- done, occurring, or active at night
  48. Nom de guerre- an assumed name under which a person engages in combat or some other activity or enterprise.
  49. Nonchalance- the state of being nonchalant
  50. Non sequitur- a conclusion or statement that does not logically follow from the previous argument or statement.
  51. Oblivious- not aware of or not concerned about what is happening around one
  52. Obsequious- obedient or attentive to an excessive or servile degree
  53. Obsolete- no longer produced or used; out of date
  54. Onus- used to refer to something that is one’s duty or responsibility
  55. Optimal- best or most favorable; optimum
  56. Opus- any artistic work, especially one on a large scale
  57. Onerous- (of a task, duty, or responsibility) involving an amount of effort and difficulty that is oppressively burdensome
  58. Ostensibly- apparently or purportedly, but perhaps not actually
  59. Ostracize- exclude (someone) from a society or group
  60. Onomatopoeia- the formation of a word from a sound associated with what is named
  61. Pacify- quell the anger, agitation, or excitement of
  62. Pandemic- (of a disease) prevalent over a whole country or the world.
  63. Paradigm- a typical example or pattern of something; a model
  64. Paragon- a person or thing regarded as a perfect example of a particular quality
  65. Paroxysm- a sudden attack or violent expression of a particular emotion or activity
  66. Paucity- the presence of something only in small or insufficient quantities or amounts; scarcity
  67. Peccadillo- a small, relatively unimportant offense or sin.
  68. Pedantic- of or like a pedant
  69. Penultimate- last but one in a series of things; second to the last
  70. Perennial- lasting or existing for a long or apparently infinite time; enduring or continually recurring
  71. Perpetuate- make (something, typically an undesirable situation or an unfounded belief) continue indefinitely
  72. Peruse- read (something), typically in a thorough or careful way
  73. Pervasive- (especially of an unwelcome influence or physical effect) spreading widely throughout an area or a group of people
  74. Picayune- petty; worthless
  75. Pinnacle- the most successful point; the culmination
  76. Placid- (of a person or animal) not easily upset or excited
  77. Platonic- (of love or friendship) intimate and affectionate but not sexual
  78. Plethora- a large or excessive amount of (something)
  79. Polarize- divide or cause to divide into two sharply contrasting groups or sets of opinions or beliefs
  80. Polemics- a strong verbal or written attack on someone or something
  81. Portend- be a sign or warning that (something, especially something momentous or calamitous) is likely to happen
  82. Posit- assume as a fact; put forward as a basis of argument
  83. Potable safe to drink; drinkable
  84. Pragmatic- dealing with things sensibly and realistically in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations
  85. Precarious- not securely held or in position; dangerously likely to fall or collapse
  86. Precedent- an earlier event or action that is regarded as an example or guide to be considered in subsequent similar circumstances
  87. Precocious- (of a child) having developed certain abilities or proclivities at an earlier age than usual
  88. Preemptive- serving or intended to preempt or forestall something, especially to prevent attack by disabling the enemy
  89. Pretense- an attempt to make something that is not the case appear true
  90. Primordial- existing at or from the beginning of time; primeval
  91. Pristine- in its original condition; unspoiled
  92. Prodigal- spending money or resources freely and recklessly; wastefully extravagant
  93. Procrastinate- delay or postpone action; put off doing something
  94. Proliferate- increase rapidly in numbers; multiply
  95. Promiscuity- the fact or state of being promiscuous
  96. Protégé- p a person who is guided and supported by an older and more experienced or influential person
  97. Protocol- the official procedure or system of rules governing affairs of state or diplomatic occasions
  98. Proverbial- (of a word or phrase) referred to in a proverb or idiom
  99. Prudent- acting with or showing care and thought for the future
  100. Pulchritude- beauty
  101. Raconteur- r a person who tells anecdotes in a skillful and amusing way
  102. Raillery- good-humored teasing
  103. Raiment- clothing
  104. Raison d’être- r the most important reason or purpose for someone or something’s existence
  105. Rambunctious- uncontrollably exuberant; boisterous.
  106. Ramification- a consequence of an action or event, especially when complex or unwelcome
  107. Rancor- r bitterness or resentfulness, especially when long-standing
  108. Rapacity- aggressive greed
  109. Rapprochement- (especially in international relations) an establishment or resumption of harmonious relations
  110. Ratiocinate- form judgments by a process of logic
  111. Recalcitrant- having an obstinately uncooperative attitude toward authority or discipline
  112. Recant- say that one no longer holds an opinion or belief, especially one considered heretical
  113. Recapitulate- summarize and state again the main points of
  114. Reciprocity- the practice of exchanging things with others for mutual benefit, especially privileges granted by one country or organization to another.
  115. Recriminate- make counteraccusations
  116. Rectitude- morally correct behavior or thinking; righteousness
  117. Redact- edit (text) for publication.
  118. Redolent- strongly reminiscent or suggestive of (something)
  119. Reflexive- denoting a pronoun that refers back to the subject of the clause in which it is used
  120. Rejoinder- a reply, especially a sharp or witty one
  121. Salacious- treating sexual matters in an indecent way and typically conveying undue interest in or enjoyment of the subject
  122. Salient- most noticeable or important
  123. Salubrious- health-giving; healthy
  124. Sangfroid- composure or coolness, sometimes excessive, as shown in danger or under trying circumstances
  125. Sapient- wise, or attempting to appear wise
  126. Sardonic- grimly mocking or cynical
  127. Sartorial- of or relating to tailoring, clothes, or style of dress
  128. Satiety- the feeling or state of being sated.
  129. Saturnine- slow and gloomy
  130. Satyr- a man who has strong sexual desires.
  131. Savoir faire- the ability to act or speak appropriately in social situations.
  132. Scintilla- a tiny trace or spark of a specified quality or feeling
  133. Scion- a descendant of a notable family
  134. Secular- denoting attitudes, activities, or other things that have no religious or spiritual basis
  135. Sedentary- tending to spend much time seated; somewhat inactive
  136. Serendipity- the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way
  137. Sinecure- a position requiring little or no work but giving the holder status or financial benefit.
  138. Sojourn- a temporary stay
  139. Spurious- not being what it purports to be; false or fake
  140. Supercilious- behaving or looking as though one thinks one is superior to others
  141. Tabula Rasa- an absence of preconceived ideas or predetermined goals; a clean slate
  142. Taciturn- (of a person) reserved or uncommunicative in speech; saying little.
  143. Tangential- of, relating to, or along a tangent
  144. Tantamount- equivalent in seriousness to; virtually the same as
  145. Tautology- the saying of the same thing twice in different words, generally considered to be a fault of style
  146. Teleological- the explanation of phenomena by the purpose they serve rather than by postulated causes
  147. Temerity- excessive confidence or boldness; audacity
  148. Temper- a person’s state of mind seen in terms of their being angry or calm
  149. Tempestuous- characterized by strong and turbulent or conflicting emotion
  150. Tenet- a principle or belief, especially one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy
  151. Tendentious- expressing or intending to promote a particular cause or point of view, especially a controversial one
  152. Tenacious- tending to keep a firm hold of something; clinging or adhering closely
  153. Tete-a-tete- a private conversation between two people
  154. Thaumaturge- a worker of wonders and performer of miracles; a magician
  155. Titular- holding or constituting a purely formal position or title without any real authority
  156. Toothsome- temptingly tasty
  157. Tractable- easy to control or influence
  158. Transient- lasting only for a short time; impermanent
  159. Tryst- a private, romantic rendezvous between lovers
  160. Tumid- swollen
  161. Ubiquitous- present, appearing, or found everywhere
  162. Umbrage- offense or annoyance
  163. Unassuming- not pretentious or arrogant; modest
  164. Unbridled- uncontrolled; unconstrained
  165. Unceremonious- having or showing a lack of courtesy; rough or abrupt
  166. Unctuous- excessively or ingratiatingly flattering; oily
  167. Ungainly- awkward; clumsy
  168. Unilateral- performed by or affecting only one person, group, or country involved in a particular situation, without the agreement of another or the others
  169. Unimpeachable- not able to be doubted, questioned, or criticized; entirely trustworthy
  170. Unsavory- disagreeable to taste, smell, or look at.
  171. Vacuous- having or showing a lack of thought or intelligence; mindless
  172. Vagary- an unexpected and inexplicable change in a situation or in someone’s behavior
  173. Vainglorious- inordinate pride in oneself or one’s achievements; excessive vanity.
  174. Vapid- offering nothing that is stimulating or challenging
  175. Vanguard- a group of people leading the way in new developments or ideas
  176. Vehement- showing strong feeling; forceful, passionate, or intense
  177. Venal- showing or motivated by susceptibility to bribery
  178. Venial- denoting a sin that is not regarded as depriving the soul of divine grace. Often contrasted with mortal
  179. Veracity- conformity to facts; accuracy
  180. Verdant- green with grass or other rich vegetation.
  181. Vers libre- another term for free verse
  182. Vignette- a brief evocative description, account, or episode.
  183. Vociferous- (especially of a person or speech) vehement or clamorous
  184. Wanderlust- a strong desire to travel
  185. Wane- (of the moon) have a progressively smaller part of its visible surface illuminated, so that it appears to decrease in size.
  186. Wanton- (of a cruel or violent action) deliberate and unprovoked
  187. Watershed- an area or ridge of land that separates waters flowing to different rivers, basins, or seas.
  188. Wayfaring- (of a person) traveling on foot
  189. Weltschmerz- a feeling of melancholy and world-weariness.
  190. Wherewithal- the money or other means needed for a particular purpose
  191. Xanadu- an idealized place of great or idyllic magnificence and beauty
  192. Xenophile- an individual who is attracted to foreign peoples, manners, or cultures.
  193. Yahoo- a rude, noisy, or violent person.
  194. Xenophobic- having or showing an intense or irrational dislike or fear of people from other countries
  195. Yawnful- causing or arousing yawns, especially as the result of boredom, tedium, or the like
  196. Za-zen- meditation in a prescribed, cross-legged posture.
  197. Zeitgeist-the defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas and beliefs of the time
  198. Zest- great enthusiasm and energy
  199. Zenith- the highest point reached by a celestial or other object
  200. Yammer- loud and sustained or repetitive noise

Sources: New Oxford American Dictionary and Merriam-Webster Dictionary (MAC OSX/Android)

Halalan 2016 Coverage: Punctuations on Balanced Reporting

DEMOCRACY through its relentless consensus with man and his government gives us an unrestrained expression of our opinions and agenda. The campaign trail for this year’s elections can be considered as one of the most fixated in history as obviously seen on new media as voters argue what is right and wrong. The traditional media on the other hand seemed to have failed its purpose and ideals as facilitators of public opinion by somehow managing to discreetly impose agenda on their coverage.

Given that we all desire an outcome that delineates what want to see in the next six years, it is understandable that we, by all means would endorse a bearer of what we perceive as what the Philippines should be in the days to come. But do we really have to compromise standards and principles in order to fulfill our desires?

Black propaganda has been one of the sharpest edges of one campaign team from another. As seen in news in television programs, print media, online news sources and radio, it seems to be tolerable for the journalists, editors, producers and writers of the broadcasting company to be biased in an ill manner.

Although black propaganda has always been a conductor of stories that people love to read, I can only ask why advertisements that detract a candidate, which belongs in social media could breach the confines of traditional media, where it has always been imperative to be balanced?

It is still unthinkable to have all of the important factors of reporting become compromised just because it is a time of conflicting interests among people. Journalists should always consider the values and standards of every voter in choosing their candidates and they should never manipulate people to respond to such differences as a division, but rather they should help the people receive it as a diversity of ideals for one vision.

As we live in an age where involvement has intensified due to the advancements in technology, it might be time to reconsider the reception of campaign trails in the years to come. The antagonistic response of voters with opinions different from theirs should be redirected into something positive in order to create a campaign environment that is intellectual—both in discourse and in context.

And in turn, the traditional media should stay traditional in its principles and values. Any demarcation caused by conflicting interests should be addressed like how the justice system of our Democracy should actually be exercising balance and justice.

As the Manifesto of writers that was issued by award-winning writer Miguel Chuck Syjuco says: “Elections pass, systems crumble, but stories remain.” Journalists should always remember that the hungry demand for change should never devour the principles of balance.

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 6.52.50 PM
Manifesto also published in



Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 6.54.02 PM
Last paragraph of the Manifesto

Because as we all know, the six years we all clamor for is not permanent, but its permanence will outlast everyone, and it is up to Journalists to bring all of these stories into justification; Without punctuating balance with interest. Neil Jayson N. Servallos

Traffic decongestion conferred by Presidential bets



PANGASINAN–Presidential bets raised transportation development platforms on decongesting traffic in Metro Manila earlier today.

During the last Presidential debate at the Phinma-University of Pangasinan, a commuter asked the candidates of their “immediate” solution to the traffic in Metro Manila.

Walking towards the person asking, Vice President Jejomar Binay said he would separate the Department of Transportation and Communications into two different offices and vowed to have competent people to handle the worsening traffic situation.

“Gabundok ang plano at programa para sa traffic, bakit yung pagpapatupad, hindi nangyayari?” Binay stated, hitting the current administration.

The current administration’s standard-bearer Mar Roxas said in contrast to Binay that dividing DOTC into two departments is not necessary. “Hindi na kailangang paghiwalayin, ang kailangan ay ibalik ang DOTC sa DPWH para coherent ang mga plano,” Roxas argued in defense of the administration.

Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte on the other hand said that there is no “silver bullet magic” to instantly solve traffic congestion. Duterte admitted that his programs on traffic decongestion would take a year or two to be implemented.

“We have to improve the mass transit of people, the government should build new railways,” he remarked.

Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago argued that a new capital city should be established outside the National Capital Region so as to relay economic developments in the suburban areas.

Aside from a subway system and the completion of all pending transportation projects, Senator Grace Poe said that she would appoint a “Secretary of traffic termination” who will oversee all projects on public works.

Said terminator should have background on engineering and expertise on traffic to speed up sluggish operations, Grace Poe said. Neil Jayson N. Servallos

Jariño: Duterte rape joke misaligned

“RAPE IS STILL RAPE,” said ABSC Auditor Ralph Reindle Jariño in response to Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte’s rape joke that went viral over social media.

In a chance interview earlier today, Jariño argued that Duterte’s joke, which showed contempt over the Australian missionary that was raped in a hostage crisis in 1989, manifested disregard on human dignity.

“We have regained our embodiment of human dignity and rights after Martial Law, an embodiment that Duterte does not take part of, obviously,” Jariño discoursed.

ABSC Auditor Jariño 

Jariño also pointed out that heedlessness on words elicited Duterte’s flak over social media “As a presidential candidate, he [should’ve] been careful [with] the things he said,” the ABSC Auditor contended.

Aside from disregard of human dignity, Jariño also addressed the Presidential candidate’s standard of peace and order, further arguing that there is a ‘‘fecundity’’ of possibilities on a circumstance of crime.

“To entirely disregard the human rights without due process would compromise human rights and should be strongly opposed,” he argued.

He also commented on Duterte’s supporters, saying they are coming from an unreasonable regard for the law. “They want a leader who walks the talk—in the sense of not resorting to diplomacy nor dialogue—it’s as if he puts the law in his hands and enforces it in a means of punishment,” Jariño remarked.

The ABSC Auditor also urged voters not to tolerate such leadership, and not to let impulse prevail. “Voters should be educated more in order to bring back their critical impulse that was numbed by society’s imposition of capitalism and culture industry,” he affirmed.

Change as a contrast

Carolyn Nanca, a Natural Sciences instructor in the Faculty of Arts and Letters said the rape joke was in all senses wrong, but it does not change her thoughts on the Presidential candidate. “My faith is still with him, because I believe he can still change,” she said.

“It’s not about his moral issues, I acknowledge his lapses wholeheartedly, but it’s his political background and achievements I consider,” Nanca added.

The Faculty member addressed voters and social media critics, saying that looking on the positives of the candidates can settle debates. “If we would look at the positives of the candidates, we can see the reason why and why not a voter chose them,” she remarked.

“Respect comes in when a voter learns how to look at candidates, and who prefers them,” Nanca said, explaining the important role of respect in candidate preference disputes. Neil Jayson N. Servallos

The Servallos Registry of Words

As journalists, we live by our words as our living depend on our words. In this instance, we are expected to be sharp in our sentence construction skills so as our choice of words. In the world of writing, whether in the academe, media or literature, it has always been a challenge for writers to contain their thoughts into words without using figurative language.

A family of Websters and Oxfords

Most of the time, we leave this behind when we resume our life at home where we have our own register of words. After all, our families are sharp in the use of words in a very different way from those in the industry of writing.


My parents are very vocal in expressing their opinions to the point that their words become abrasive. To conceal these opinions from people they criticize, they often create words for aliases. For example, they refer to my ex-girlfriends as ‘Pekta’, a derivative of the word impakto which means “a terrifyingly horrible person”.


And when it comes to berating me of my habit of smoking, they jumble the already jumbled the word ‘yosi’ to ‘isoy’, so as to assert that they refuse to accept that their son is a smoker. And of course, my own personal favorite and theirs: ‘We-Uts’. According to them, they created this word because they grew satiated of asking me to go home, thus from ‘Uwi’ that means “to go home”, they decided to use their own.


The list is piling up yet I still haven’t begun with my brother. My brother uses about 4 languages namely: Filipino, English, conyo and gay-lingo, which makes him the one with the most contributions in the creation of words for our family’s own dictionary. He loves annoying me and when he does, expect he’d be referring to me as ‘Pidge’, which he apparently interprets as “bastard” or in tagalog, “sam-pid” thus—Pidge.


Another word worth noting is how he refers to the internet as ‘netikels’. He says it’s a gay word that he and his friends use at school whenever they make fun of the computer units for “having a slow internet connection”. And here are some of his notable gay words/phrases: ‘Indiana Jones’ (no-show), ‘jongoloid’ (idiot), ‘chimay’ (maid), ‘Gandiz Everdeen’ (pretty) and his overly used ‘Cash and Carry’ which refers to one’s endurance (Cash and carry mo pa?).


Words, although countless, ironically are still limited. The complexity of some emotions, phenomena, objects, events and other facets of living cannot be contained into words, thus creating the need for people to either juxtapose words into a phrase or even create a new word of some relation or resemblance to the unnameable facet, thereby removing flow blocks from the communication process. Some are just by accident and most are works of creativity to contain thoughts into words. But it is important to take note that these works of creativity have their own appropriate places, in this case, not in journalism. Neil Jayson N. Servallos

Senatorial bets to champion underprivileged

LEGISLATIONS and developments focused on education, labor and employment were pledged to be empowered by Senatorial candidates in attendance for the Faculty of Arts and Letters’ Senatorial forum earlier today.

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Romulo and Ople during the iAM Senatorial Forum ©AB The Flame

“I base my legislative agenda on my advocacy for the OFWs—our modern heroes,” Ople said during her opening statement.

She mentioned the need for a Department of Migration and Development healthcare programs for the OFWs, even narrating the efforts for repatriation of stranded OFWs in Saudi Arabia.

“I’m offering myself as someone with the deepest experience when it comes to labor migration. That is what I bring to the table,” Ople said.

In his opening statement, Congressman Romulo emphasized on the to have accessible and affordable schooling for the underprivileged and empowerment of students.“Students should benefit from the education their government provides, that why it is a must to enact laws to carry out their call for help,” Romulo said.

The two senatoriables also addressed the crucial role of Internet and Wi-Fi for students and workers, discussing the overpricing of Internet service. “We will ask local TeleCom companies to consult foreign providers in order to justify and reconsider the overpricing of Internet service,” Romulo added.

Ople supported Romulo on the advantages of having affordable and dispersed accessiblity of Wi-Fi connections and the need to enact free connection for every Filipino citizens, especially students. “Free and accessible Wi-Fi should be a part of our learning investments. It will give us an educationally and globally competetive edge,” Ople said.

On Poe’s alleged diqualification

Ople and Romulo also expressed their support for Presidential candidate Grace Poe as an anonymous query from the crowd with regards to a breaking news from Manila Times saying Poe is disqualified from the Presidential elections was raised.

“We are still not aware about the allegation, but given it is true, we will give our full support to Senator Grace Poe,” Romulo and Ople said.

The senatorials also gave their word in supporting other underprivileged people and institutions such as the LGBT community, the Disabled, Indigenous people, Artists and Cultural envoys.

Department of Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, Former MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino, Red Cross Chair Richard Gordon were no shows given their busy schedules for other agenda in the campaign proceedings. Neil Jayson N. Servallos

The Grotesque Image of Journalism: Responsible Journalism as portrayed in ‘Pinocchio’ (Korean TV Series)

Image courtesy of

         Integrity and distinction have been in contrast with each other in the minds of Journalists. Being in line with a very consequential profession, Journalists are torn apart in making choices of whether they will be Journalists who simply provides the people what they need and deserve or ones who secure their careers into their own well-being no matter the cost—choices that will decide which kind of a Journalist they are going to be. The Korean Series Pinocchio provided a very graphic representation of the two faces of Journalism, one which is the face of Just Reporting, and the other being the face of Sensationalized News.

In the series, two of the most prominent broadcasting corporations (MSC and YGN) square off against for supremacy over the other. In the first episode, the two corporations are simultaneously screened as reporters Song Cha-ok (MSC) and Hwang Gyo-dong (YGN) argue with their producers to have their story of the factory explosion of which firefighters died in rescue efforts put in the news.

YGN news desk chief wanted no presumptions from the missing captain of the firefighting squad until the facts are calibrated to a 100% and until hearsays are disproven. On the contrasting end, the MSC reporter Song Cha-ok wanted to have the story put in the news, having rid of, distorted and created facts in order to sensationalize the story, even ruling out that it is impact that what gets the ratings up, and not the facts.

The fictional broadcasting companies in the series can be traced of the same observation from the Philippines’ top two competitors in the broadcasting scene. The ABS-CBN and GMA network has been compared and contrasted in many angles and aspects, even recently in social media, the two were weighed in the registry of responsible journalism. Manny Pacquiao being dropped by Nike as one of their endorsers due to his infamous statements with regards to the LGBT community was covered and published by the two networks in their respective online news sites.

Minutes after being published, the articles written by the two networks regarding the People’s Champ being dropped by Nike received social media reprimand, particularly the one written by ABS-CBN due to its sensationalized approach on the issue. The GMA Network having used appropriate sentence construction for news received commendation from the public, thus showing how much the public appreciates responsible Journalism.

‘Pinocchio’, being a fictional syndrome among humans is used as an allegory to portray responsible Journalism in the series. Journalists in the series were portrayed as people who live for the stories, whether approximate or global and shaped in different images of principles and philosophies in the work they do. The juxtaposition of the struggle for responsibility in the news reports Journalists write and broadcast and the sensationalism for distinction will always be a grotesque image of the profession we understand all too well. Neil Jayson N. Servallos