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A guide to reforming the Bureau of Customs

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When, in 1573, the Spanish conquistador Miguel Lopez de Legazpi established the “Customs Service of Manila” to generate badly needed revenues for the colonial government, little did he dream that he was creating a den of iniquity that seems immune to reforms even in this digital age.

Posted: September 10th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

The second half of his reforms

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President Aquino wants to be a reformist president, and he’s doing a good job at reforming society. His “daang matuwid” resonates with the people, and is something they want: a clean, honest government that cares. But they also want a decent life, and that he hasn’t yet provided.

Posted: May 15th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

The 15th Congress’ surprising output: A bumper crop of reform measures

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It was disappointing, the way the last session of the 15th Congress ended, with the Senate in turmoil over Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile’s gestures of feudal favoritism with the people’s money and the House of Representatives’ unconscionable failure to pass the Freedom of Information Bill. But its tragicomic last act should not bury the fact that this Congress had a bumper crop of progressive measures strengthening social, political, and human rights.

Posted: February 11th, 2013 in Columns,Viewpoints | Read More »

Achievements

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A remarkable year 2012 was. In his time, President Fidel Ramos brought about some dramatic changes in the business environment—changes that to this day we are still benefiting from. He deregulated the key sectors—sectors that are now vibrant and competitive: telecom (there would be few cell phones today if PLDT had retained its monopoly), power (we’d still be having blackouts), oil and banking.

Posted: January 3rd, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Little accomplishment to show

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Upon completing the second year of his administration, President Aquino had little to claim as economic and social reform accomplishment other than the decapitated head of former Chief Justice Renato Corona as proof of the invincibility of his self-proclaimed “incorruptible” presidency.

Posted: July 6th, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

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