A Milking-The-Cash-Cow Crisis!

I am currently processing my Hong Kong exit papers. I am returning home to take a new job opportunity and to be with my wife and 3-month old angel. Nothing is sweeter… 

So what crisis am I talking about then? Well, if I will be working in the Philippines again, that means my “cash cow” days are over. I am an Overseas Filipino Worker no more! How can I keep an OFW blog if I am no longer an OFW? Should I stop posting and quit? Should I reformat? Should I create a new blog? Will I have extra time for blogging?

…the decision will have to be made once I get home. I would need to readjust first… It’s a wait-and-see at this point…

A(H1N1) Update

The second A(H1N1) infection case in Hong Kong was confirmed last Wednesday. The 24-year-old man is a Hong Kong local who returned from the United States onboard a Cathay flight. He is currently held in isolation along with family members who met him at the airport and six other people who sat near him on the airplane. He is reported to be in stable condition.

To date, 33 countries have officially reported 6497 cases of influenza A(H1N1) infection.

 Countries with A(H1N1)-related deaths are as follows:  

Country

Confirmed Cases

Deaths

Mexico

2446

60

United States

3352

3

Canada

389

1

Costa Rica

8

1

The following countries have reported laboratory confirmed cases with no deaths:  

Spain 100

United Kingdom 71

Panama 29

France 14

Germany 12

Italy 9

Brazil 8

Colombia 7

Israel 7

New Zealand 7

China 4

El Salvador 4

Japan 4

Guatemala 3

Netherlands 3

Republic of Korea 3

Finland 2

Norway 2

Sweden 2

Thailand 2

Argentina 1

Australia 1

Austria 1

Cuba 1

Denmark 1

Ireland 1

Poland 1

Portugal 1

Switzerland 1

Source: http://www.who.int/csr/don/2009_05_14/en/index.html

1st case of “swine flu” in Hong Kong detected

A 25 year-old male Mexican who flew in via Shanghai from Mexico yesterday and stayed at the Metropark Wanchai Hotel has been transferred to the Princess Margaret Hospital and confirmed to have the A/H1N1 virus. Apparently, the man only started to develop fever and other symptoms indicative of swine flu when he arrived in Hong Kong.

The whole hotel has been quarantined. Government says there is no need to panic but citizens should stay vigilant. As of writing, Secretary for Food and Health York Chow is heading a press conference informing the public of the incident.

Hong Kong flu alert has been raised to “emergency” status.

Chip Tsao apologizes… but he is still an idiot!

The great Chip Tsao has apologized. See what other bloggers are saying:

http://pedestrianobserver.blogspot.com/2009/04/chip-tsao-apologized-what-now.html

http://daretospeakout.wordpress.com/2009/04/01/the-apology-of-chip-tsao/

http://aprub.com/chip-tsao-apology-an-insult-to-filipino-intelligence/

http://cathcath.com/?p=5508

http://guillotinechoked.wordpress.com/2009/04/02/chip-tsao-has-apologized-and/

http://www.sassyqarla.com/2009/04/chip-tsao-says-sorry-at-last.html

http://globalnation.inquirer.net/news/breakingnews/view/20090403-197696/Racist-HK-writer-wants-to-visit-RP

—————

Today, HK Magazine has published the statement below.

An Apology

HK Magazine

April 3rd, 2009

The publisher and editors of HK Magazine wish to apologize unreservedly for any offense that may have been caused by Chip Tsao’s column dated March 27.

HK Magazine has long championed the rights of Filipinos working in Hong Kong. We note that Filipinos have often been unfairly treated in Hong Kong, and that they make an important contribution to this community.

As a magazine, we would never want to say anything that would negate that belief.

The column in question was satirical. One aspect of satire is that it can at times be read in different ways. In this particular case, many people have read meanings into this column that were never actually intended.

We wish to assure our readers that we have nothing but respect for Filipinos, both living in Hong Kong and abroad.

—————

Okay then. Apology accepted. But Chip Tsao will remain an idiot in my book. Published words may sometimes fuel hate. As a veteran journalist, sensitivity is expected of him.

Chip Tsao is an Idiot!

Filipinos around the world are fuming mad over the article, “The War at Home”, by Chip Tsao for HK Magazine. Of course, I am also angry, but not that much. Having lived in Hongkie (I’d always wanted to use that term, thank you Mr. Tsao for giving me the opportunity!) town for about 2 years now, I know that Tsao does not represent the whole Hong Kong populace in this respect. There are plenty of HK Chinese out here who respect and admire Pinoys. It is because of them that I am keeping my cool with this issue.

If you haven’t read it yet, here is the full article written by the great Chip Tsao. See for yourself why this “satire”, as declared by Tsao apologists, is a failure:

—————-

The War at Home
By Chip Tsao

The Russians sank a Hong Kong freighter last month, killing the seven Chinese seamen onboard. We can live with that–Lenin and Stalin were once the ideological mentors of all Chinese people. The Japanese planted a flag on Diàoyú Island. That’s no big problem–we Hong Kong Chinese love Japanese cartoons, Hello Kitty, and shopping in Shinjuku, let alone our round-the-clock obsession with karaoke.

But hold on–even the Filipinos? Manila has just claimed sovereignty over the scattered rocks in the South China Sea called the Spratly Islands, complete with a blatant threat from its congress to send gunboats to the South China Sea to defend the islands from China if necessary. This is beyond reproach. The reason: There are more than 130,000 Filipina maids working as HK$3,580-a-month cheap labor in Hong Kong. As a nation of servants, you don’t flex your muscles at your master, from whom you earn most of your bread and butter.

As a patriotic Chinese man, the news has made my blood boil. I summoned Louisa, my domestic assistant who holds a degree in international politics from the University of Manila, hung a map on the wall, and gave her a harsh lecture. I sternly warned her that if she wants her wages increased next year, she had better tell everyone of her compatriots in Statue Square on Sunday that the entirety of the Spratly Islands belongs to China.

Grimly, I told her that if war breaks out between the Philippines and China, I would have to end her employment and send her straight home, because I would not risk the crime of treason for sponsoring an enemy of the state by paying her to wash my toilet and clean my windows 16 hours a day. With that money, she would pay taxes to her Government, and they would fund a navy to invade our motherland and deeply hurt my feelings.

Oh yes. The Government of the Philippines would certainly be wrong if they think we Chinese are prepared to swallow their insult and sit back and lose a Falkland Islands War in the Far East. They may have Barack Obama and the hawkish American military behind them, but we have a hostage in each of our homes in the Mid-Levels or higher. Some of my friends told me they have already declared a state of emergency at home. Their maids have been made to shout ‘China, Madam/Sir’ loudly whenever they hear the word “Spratly”. They say the indoctrination is working as wonderfully as when we used to shout, “Long live Chairman Mao!” at the sight of a portrait of our Great Leader during the Cultural Revolution. I’m not sure if that’s going a bit too far, at least for the time being.

—————-

Here are some more reactions to Chip Tsao’s idiocy:

http://bungangaraw.wordpress.com/2009/03/31/chip-tsaos-cheap-shot/

http://filipinovoices.com/in-praise-of-chip-tsao

http://pedestrianobserver.blogspot.com/2009/03/chip-tsao-satire-sparking-controversy.html

http://ruffybiazon.wordpress.com/2009/03/29/why-mr-chip-tsao-wrote-that-article/

http://pinoyobserver.wordpress.com/2009/04/01/chip-tsao-learnings-about-satire/

http://www.senate.gov.ph/press_release/2009/0329_cayetano1.asp

http://midfield.wordpress.com/2009/03/30/filipinos-rebuke-chip-tsaos-cheap-shot/

http://queeniemb.wordpress.com/2009/03/31/when-the-servants-stop-serving-what-will-happen-with-chip-tsao/

http://hanseman.wordpress.com/2009/03/31/philippines-a-nation-of-servants/

http://kikomatching.wordpress.com/2009/04/01/is-philippines-really-a-nation-of-servants/

http://mackyramirez.wordpress.com/2009/03/31/disaster-has-a-passport-mr-bean-err-mr-tsao/

http://reynaelena.com/2009/03/29/that-xenophobic-and-barbaric-chinese-remarks/

http://jimcaro.wordpress.com/2009/03/30/the-master-and-the-servant/

Philhealth or Feel Hell?

philhealthformsThe current Philhealth procedure requiring members to secure proof of contribution from their employers prior to issuance of hospitalization benefits is plain moronic!  Shouldn’t Philhealth, being the authority in this situation, provide the necessary documents to the hospital themselves? Philhealth should be in the position to prove if a member has paid his dues or not. How come members are forced to get the proof of contribution from their respective employers when Philhealth should have a proper database for this purpose? In this high tech age, why can’t Philhealth keep their systems updated real time? Why do we have to suffer all this red tape?

In our case for example, when my wife gave birth by C-section last February, my father-in-law who was our official “runner” had to spend hours on the road and suffer the poor traffic conditions from Pasig to España, where my wife works, just to obtain that blasted piece of paper! We also found out that Philhealth has not posted the latest payment yet so we had to produce the receipt as evidence. When the hospital bill was processed, we were given a measly discount of about Php 7000. I was actually expecting more. Was it worth all that trouble? What a waste of time, cash and energy! Why do I have this feeling that we are not getting our money’s worth from Philhealth?

I found this article in inquirer.net. Please click the link below, read through and find out the reason behind the title of this post.

http://blogs.inquirer.net/voxpopuli/2009/02/20/wake-up-philhealth/

What a scam!

“Made in China”

nicashuttercow

Around 4 in the early morning of 17 February 2009, I was sent a text message from the Philippines. It was my mother-in-law telling me that my wife’s water bag broke and that they were already going to the hospital. Actually, she sent me the same sms thrice before I picked up my cell phone and jolted off the bed. That was my mark. I had to hurry back home. Good that Manila is just a 2-hour flight from Hong Kong. Every second mattered. I promised my wife that I will be there when she delivers our first baby. I was so excited but I also felt bad that morning. I should have been with her the minute she had indications of labor. Alas, that is the sad fate of OFWs. Physical separation from loved ones is part of the sacrifice.

Rewind more than 9 months back… My wife spent her summer vacation with me. It was the longest time we ever spent together since we got married. She stayed with me in HK for more than a month. So “Made in China” our baby was. What else is not created in China nowadays? Food, drugs, cosmetics, garments, appliances, toys, electronics, gadgets, cars, ships, airplanes, rockets… You name it, them Chinese can make it! When will the Philippines beat that?

Back to my story… I was able to catch a Philippine Airlines flight scheduled at 1pm. Arrived in the Philippines before 3pm. Hired a cab to my in-laws’ house and arrived there before 4pm. Then my father-in-law took me to the hospital, just in time to see my daughter being placed in the nursery. A scene I would never forget! Wrapped in pink sheets was this tiny girl, born at exactly 4:04pm, grey eyes wide open, yawning every now and then, a few bubbles coming out of her pretty mouth as if teasing me. She was lovely!

This cash cow is now a father at last.


THE BLOG AND THE AUTHOR:

...sapagkat ang gobyerno natin ay may "cash cow mentality" pagdating sa mga Overseas Filipino Workers.

(Read On "Milking the Cash Cow")

...sapagkat ako ay isa ring OFW; may mithiin, marunong magisip at nagnanais marinig... Makabagong bayani daw... Sa totoo'y tampok na gatasan ng pamahalaan. (English)

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