Closing My Facebook Account and My Political “Say”

I am about to close and delete my Facebook account. Why? I am tired of all the ads which keep showing up in my time-line to buy things I really don’t want or need and that people whom I have “friended” say little about themselves, not in an egotistical way, and what has been happening in their lives, but don’t hesitate to put a bunch of political stuff up.  Also, it is recommended in

I tired of politics a long time ago. I tired of the lying media several years ago – I know it’s called editing, but when a person says something in an interview and the statement is aired in such a way that it becomes something entirely opposite of what the person said, to me, that’s lying.

I am going to be political here, which I don’t relish: Since there has been so much posted in Facebook about how bad Socialism is, I would like to call attention to four countries which have Socialism and seem to be doing very well: Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and, my favourite, Finland. Why is Finland my favourite? It is the ONLY country to pay the US the debt it owed due to the war and the US help to keep the Soviets out. And, Finland did that in less than the 20 years it was given to pay that debt. It’s A SOCIALIST country, folks. If that little country, with all the threats it received and all the problems It had with USSR, can be socialistic and, contrary to what Donald the Trump says, a very good friend to the US,  what is wrong with the United States of America that It can’t have some socialism?

If socialism is so bad, why haven’t those four countries dumped it? There are intelligent people there. Also, did you know that at least three of those countries ranked in the top ten as the happiest countries in the world?  Socialism must be terrible, it makes people happy.  We can’t have that. Might lower the prison population and put the US in the top ten best-educated (we now rank 51st) and happiest country in the world.  Heaven forbid!  Also, Canada ranked in the top ten happiest.

Yes, I am certain there are countries which are socialistic and which have failed, but I would bet none of them is in the ten happiest countries in the world. And that the governments didn’t live within their means (much like the US has been doing for the past 70 plus years, so we could wage wars and prop up dictators, which, by the way, has been done by BOTH major political parties ). Any political-economic system can fail, just as capitalism has in the past and, as far as I am concerned, is failing now. (Also, I exclude social systems as Communism, Naziism, and Facism as legitimate socialistic systems.) I have had my say and I doubt many will read this anyway, but, for those who do, if you want to make comments, please do.   In the meantime, I shall go back to listening to Ancient Faith Radio podcasts and Sacred Scripture reading, oh, and reading Bishop Barron’s (the new Episcopal Bishop of Los Angeles) blogs, which I recommend.

My Eyes


 I just wanted to give an update about my two cataract surgeries.  If I did not have help from my sister and brother-in-law, I think I would just now be able to have the surgery for one eye.  As it is, the left eye was done in November, 2013, and the right eye was done in April, 2015.  Has been so strange when going out with no glasses, that I had a pair of sun glasses made – the shade is not strong, just enough to cut down the glare, which I am not used to yet.

The world does look so much better now; that is, the physical world.  I see beautiful greens, blues, reds, and oranges.  With some of the family I made a short trip to Dagupan (it’s on the Philippine Sea).  The Bougainvillaeas were blooming in a bright violet colour, no red or white, and trees were blooming in yellow and orange.  Just very wonderful to see so well.

I thank God that the surgeries went very well and that the surgeon was A#1, best in the country, and that my sister and brother-in-law have been so kind to me.  I am still recovering from the right eye surgery, which is coming along so well that the surgeon said I only needed to see her if I had problems.


General Journal, 2012-08-30

At 1:10 AM tomorrow morning, Nay and I leave for Manila Immigration, again. Then, I have to go back on the 25th of September, I think, to get the new ACR-I card. Hopefully it is for longer than one year. Then, I am free -Free at last!

I have been listening to Laudes on YouTube sung by what appears to be a religious order of men and women at Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris. Of course Laudes is sung in French, so I do not understand all of it. I know when they are singing the Our Father and the Benedictus. And, I understand “The Lord be with you” and the response.

These men and women sing in a Russian-style, i.e., the modes or tonality sound like Russian or OCA modes. There are at least two icons I have seen. The main icon on the altar is Jesus the teacher, I believe.  The other icon changes daily and sits on an icon stand on the main floor.  This service is offered in one of the chapels of the Cathedral and at the entrance to the chapel, there appears to be two more icons of angels facing each other. There is not much light.

They stand during the entire service and there are some other people at the back of the chapel who also participate as part of the choir. Anyone can read the first reading, but only a priest reads the Gospel, or second reading and he also reads the prayer.  They do not stand during the entire service – I forgot that they sit on the floor during the first reading and the meditation time after the reading.  The meditation is presented by either a monk or nun playing a wind instrument (most often a flute or recorder) and sometimes the small organ. But they do sing a capella.

They are Roman Catholics.  This takes place in the Roman Catholic Cathedral and there is Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament after the service on some days. I have all the days except Monday. There seems to be no recording of that day.

General Talk

27 July 2012, 16:44, Baguio City, Benguet, Philippines
(I shall put this on Evernote and WordPress, when the electricity is back on and, hoprfully we have internet service, too.)

There has been no electricity throughout most of the city today. Everyone keeps saying it is a brown-out, but brown-outs usually last 2 to 3 hours only. This one has been going on since about 09:15 (more than 4 hours).  Seems to me to be more than a brown-out. Fortunately we have gas for cooking.

Gon, the family dog, has been watching the happnngs in the street below. He won’t stay on the Veranda with Joey or me, but he will with Beatriz. Oh, I wasn”t thinking, maybe you don’t know who everyone is in the household. Beatriz, called either Moma or Nay (pronounced like nigh), Joey, who was going to college, but has decided to return home at Esperanza, Clint Jhon (that is the spelling on his birth certificate), whom we call Totot or sometimes Tot, and me. Totot is in high school and is attending Baguio City National High School. He is only 15 and in his last year of high school.  I could never understand how a Filipino or Filipina could graduate at only 15 or 16 from High school. Do they begin school at the age of 3?  No. There are only six years of elementary school. They start at 5 or 6 and that means, with only ten years of school, they can graduate at 15 or 16,

Not everyone graduates at 15 or 16. In many cases a child may miss a year of school because parents cannot afford to pay the tuition or buy the uniform for one, and sometimes more than one, year. So it is possible that one may be 18 or 20 years old and graduating from high school. It is usually rare that a person is over 19 because, when a child misses more than one year in succession, the degree of difficulty to return to school is very high.  Study habits are quickly forgotten as is much of what was lerned in the preceeding years of school.  So, there are many uneducated people in the Philippines, especially in the provinces.

During the trial of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, there was a senator who was complaing about how much money was spent on the trial (the trial took 44 days and this senator was talking about the cost on the 36th day) which could have been used for education. He also alluded to several bills awaiting the senate’s attention which were for education and health care.  After 44 days, the Chief Justice, who had been charged with 22 crimes, as I understood from the TV and newspapers, was convicted of only one – failure to complete a federal form correctly. Granted, the form was a financial form and he failed to disclose his off-shore assets because, according to his testimony, he did not understand the law. Gives a person lots of confidence in the Filipino Judiciary system, when the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court does not understand the laws. The other charges related to misapplication of funds and embezzelment. According to a retired judge with whom I spoke, supposedly the prosecution had all the evidence they needed to convict him of every charge. The prosecution consisted of 10 or 12 actual prosecutors. But I never heard one of them ever ask a question of a witness. Only the 26 Senators chosen to be the jurors/jurists asked questions.  Oh well, so goes the world of Politics in the Philippines and the World.

Had a couple of discussions with my Uncle (Mom’s brother) about the Philippines, since he was stationed here during the Second World War and the Korean War. General MacArthur still had his headquarters here in Baguio from the Spanish-American War until Roosevelt forced him to leave and go to Australia. Uncle Jim was part of the crew which flew Eisenhower here to meet with MacArthur. Eisenhower was still Chief of Staff in D.C. then. His crew would have flown him from Clark Air Base, in the Philippines. And, my Uncle was in the lead plane during the fly-over, when the US gave the Philippines independence. Originally, the Independence Day was July 4. The new constitution, called the Charter, changed the day to some day in March. Whenever I have asked a Flipino/a what is the Independence Day now, no one seems to know.

Both my Uncle and I used to spell the country’s name incorrectly – with 2 “L’s”. I had a Filipino explain to me that the country was named afer King Filip of Spain, so no double “L”. Uncle Jim told me that my grandfather, his father, said that since he was in someone else’s country, he should learn the correct spelling. Why do we spell Philippines with “PH” instead of an “F” (Philco Appliances maybe)?  Maybe the same reason that Kiribati (pronouned Kiribash) used “TI” instead of “SH”. They took the “TI” from naTIon – and that is the truth!

I saw a monument a few days ago and for the longest time I never equated it with the US. The monument says, in words to this effect, Here the 133rd Infantry Division Met and Stopped Japanese forces from entering Baguio – 1943. That would have to be the 133rd Infantry Division of the US because there was no Filipino military in 1943. The Japanese were not kept out of Baguio, though. A few months later they were able to come from the North and right down the valley to Baguio.

Enough of the History lesson.

Baguio is called the San Francisco of the Philippines. Mostly because of the temperature and the mountains (not hills here). Also, Baguio is known for earthquakes. Most have been small, but in 1996 there was a big one which cut Baguio off from the rest of the world for about six months.  I am not sure to what extent buildings were damaged, but all the roads to Baguio – there are three from the South and one from the North – were impassible and there were no communications in or out.

The city is pretty and is covered with all sorts of parks. There is an environmental park, which is on the grounds of a Catholic Religious Order.  Camp John Hay has the only Golf course in the city. The Officers’ Club is still there from the US Army days. (I wonder if MacArthur played golf?) Additionally, there are two other restaurants in the Camp. The Camp is operated by the Philippine Military and only active duty members, retired military (from either the US or Phillipine Military), and cadets from the Military Academy are permitted on the facility. We, Beatriz, Gabriel, and I, drove on to the Camp once and were quickly told to turn around and leave! We got there accidentally when we were trying to get from Kennon Road to Loakan Road. The connector road was open only as far as Camp John Hay.

There had been several days of rain like now. The road had a clay base and the rain went right through the asphalt and made the clay wet and slippery and the roadway just disappeared. The Bureau of Roads and Highways got the road open as far as the Camp. What we were able to see was very nice.

That’s enough of the travelogue. I can write more in my next offering.