August 7, 2013 Edition

Valerie Castro

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

  1. SolGen to SC: Don’t rewrite RH law

    Solicitor General Francis Jardeleza. Rappler file photo

    In oral arguments on Tuesday, August 6, Solicitor General Francis Jardeleza stood before Supreme Court justices asking them to lift the status quo ante order (SQAO) that they issued against the Reproductive Health law. Jardeleza was the first from the pro-RH bloc to argue for the constitutionality of the law. The petitioners opposed to the law spent the previous two sessions arguing their case. The petitioners had asked the High Tribunal to stop the law’s implementation, saying it violated constitutional right to life and promotes abortion. Jardeleza said the issue is not whether justices should rule on when life begins. The issue is whether Congress can enact laws in the first place, he said. Jardeleza also debunked claims that the law promotes abortion, citing studies made by Filipino experts and the World Health Organization that state that contraceptives are not abortifacient.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  2. Napoles lawyer threatens, Rappler replies

    POSH LIVING. Online records show Jeane Napoles is the listed owner of a luxury apartment in the Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles. Photo from Ritz-Carlton website

    In a demand letter dated Aug 1, 2013, the lawyers of Janet Lim-Napoles led by Lorna Kapunan, threatened to file “criminal and civil actions” against “Rappler Beta” over “inaccurate, reckless and unfair articles” relating to the lavish lifestyle of the Napoles family. Rappler and the Philippine Daily Inquirer will be charged with libel — supposedly for our “disregard for the truth.” Rappler is being singled out for stories on the lavish lifestyle of Jeane Napoles, daughter of Janet, while theInquirer is being targeted for its reports on the alleged fund scam involving legislators and fake NGOs. Rappler’s Natashya Gutierrez, according to the demand letter, “disregarded the right to privacy of our clients, exaggerated details about their lifestyle, sensationalized half-truths and gossips relating to their properties, spread lies about them and published very personal details that seriously impact on their security.” Rappler takes exception to the accusation because while privacy is an individual’s inviolate right, especially so in a democracy, that right ends where public interest begins.

    Read the full story on Rappler:

  3. New PH warship stays in Subic – for now

    NEW SHIP. President Aquino in Subic.

    President Benigno Aquino III on Tuesday welcomed the arrival of the Philippine Navy’s newly acquired Hamilton-class cutter BRP Ramon Alcaraz  as a “boost” to the country’s “capability to counter any threat.” The Alcaraz will be based at the former US military base. Subic is 140 nautical miles away from disputed territory Scarborough or Panatag Shoal. The twin ship of the Alcaraz, the BRP Gregorio Del Pilar, previously figured in a standoff with Chinese fishing vessels there. But the Alcaraz will not get missions until it is officially commissioned in October. It will be dry docked for the next two months and will be painted gray, the navy’s official color. Its armaments will be upgraded, too. Like Del Pilar, the main weapon of the Alcaraz is a MK75 76 Main Battery. It also has an MK36 SRBOC Missile Decoy Chaff. MK38 25mm Machine guns and M2HB .50 caliber Machine Guns will be added. The Alcaraz was a former decommissioned US Coast Guard cutter.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  4. Dutch activist who made SONA cop cry to be deported August 7

    BANNED FOR LIFE. Thomas van Beersum at NAIA's immigration office August 6 for his deportation proceedings.

    Thomas van Beersum, the Dutch activist who joined a rally in protest of the President’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) in July, was prevented by the Bureau of Immigration (BI) from flying out of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Tuesday morning, August 6. Atty Tonette Mangrobang, spokesperson for the BI, told Rappler that Beersum had been on the bureau’s blacklist for visa violations. A summary deportation order was issued against him on August 1, said Mangrobang. This means he will not be allowed to enter the Philippines again after he is allowed to leave. After his deportation papers were processed late afternoon, Beersum told reporters: “I’d rather not say anything. My action is public knowledge.” He has been booked for the next available flight on Wednesday, August 7. Beersum was holding a tourist visa to attend International Conference on Human Rights and Peace in the Philippines.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  5. US sues Bank of America for fraud over mortgage bonds

    Bank of America

    The US government sued Bank of America for defrauding investors in the sale of $850 million in mortgage-backed securities ahead of the housing bust. The Department of Justice civil complaint alleges Bank of America lied to investors about the riskiness of the mortgage loans backing the securities, and intentionally avoided performing adequate due diligence on them, leading to investor losses surpassing $100 million. Unlike some of the other sub-prime-based mortgage securities that soured during the housing bust and spawned messy litigation, the mortgages in Tuesday’s US suit against Bank of America were sold as “prime” loans, meaning they purportedly had a low likelihood of falling into default. However, the suit alleges the loans were far riskier than Bank of America said. Despite the “prime” rating, at least 23% of the mortgages in the securities have defaulted or were delinquent as of June 2013, according to the complaint. A Bank of America spokesman denied the bank was responsible for the losses.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  6. Escaped python kills two young children in Canada

    Canada baffled by death of boys in python attack

    A python strangled two children in their sleep in eastern Canada after escaping from a reptile shop and slithering through a ventilation shaft, police said Monday, August 5. The two young brothers, aged 5 and 7, were at a sleepover at a friend’s apartment late Sunday, August 4, in the small town of Campbellton. The snake apparently escaped from a pet store specializing in exotic animals located on the floor below the apartment. Autopsies were expected Tuesday but at this stage it is believed the boys were strangled by the snake, which is of a species that constricts its prey and squeezes out its life. The brothers had been guests of the pet store owner, Jean-Claude Savoie, and his young son, and had spent the day playing in a paddling pool, eating barbecue and riding a tractor. The RCMP major crimes section is carrying out a criminal investigation but has not brought charges.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  7. Three students expelled for speaking Ilocano – in Ilocos Norte

    SPEAK ENGLISH ONLY. The Saviour's Christian Academy in Ilocos Norte implements a strict English-speaking policy inside the campus. All photos by Herdy Yumul

    The president of an Ilocos Norte High School allegedly expelled 3 students for speaking Ilocano during a break at their English-speaking campus. In an August 6 blog post, The Ilocos Times columnist Herdy Yumul recounted the story of 3 Grade 8 students, who were reportedly dismissed from Saviour’s Christian Academy (SCA) for not speaking English on campus – a violation of the school’s rules. Students Kleinee Bautista, Carl Abadilla, and Samuel Respicio – all 13 years old – were in their classroom on July 30 when they spoke in Ilocano during breaktime. The next day, July 31, SCA president Reverend Brian Shah called the 3 to his office and asked them if they violated the policy and spoke in Ilocano. When they admitted their “disobedience,” Shah told them to look for another school. “Indeed, one wonders, dear karikna, why all these had to happen at a time when today’s thrust of basic education is the strengthening of our mother tongue, a measure meant to fortify the linguistic foundations of a child,” Yumul wrote.

    Read the full story on Rappler:

  8. FIBA Asia: Gilas rips Qatar

    Graphic by

    Gilas Pilipinas unleashed a torrid second-quarter assault, but had to weather a near-meltdown to fend off Qatar, 80-70, in the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship second round on Tuesday, August 6 at the Mall of Asia Arena. But the impressive win could come at a big cost, with big man Marcus Douthit sustaining a knee injury that he played through in the 4th period with the home team seemingly in trouble. Douthit’s return to action proved to be crucial for Gilas, who survived the Qataris’ comeback to chalk up its second straight win and 4th in 5 outings. With the victory, the Philippines tied their victims at second place in Group E with a 3-1 record and could actually snatch the top spot if Qatar beats Chinese Taipei by no more than 15 points on Wednesday, August 7. But if it doesn’t happen, Gilas coach Chot Reyes said they’re ready to face powerhouse China.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  9. Apple offers cut-price charger trade-in

    Photo from Shutterstock

    Apple will replace non-Apple chargers with official chargers worldwide at a discounted price of $10. The replacement program begins on August 16 and will run to October 18 worldwide. The USB Power Adapter Takeback Program comes after reports that a Chinese woman was electrocuted by a non-Apple charger. The company says customer safety is a top priority and that all its products undergo rigorous testing. To qualify for the discounted price, customers need to present the third-party charger and an iPhone, iPad or iPod to an Apple retail store or Authorized Service Provider.

    Read the full story on BBC.

  10. French nurse rents breasts to feed children

    A young French nurse has gained widespread attention after offering to rent her breasts to feed children of gay parents for 100 euro a day. The 29 year old mother posted an advertisement over, a website for people who wish to rent out services or products. “I am a young mother in full health, a trained nurse, 29 years old, and I’m renting out my breasts to feed young babies. In one day I can offer you up to a dozen feeds for your baby,” reads the ad by “cecelia232” titled “Breast rental – breast-feeding – Boulogne”, a district on the western outskirts of Paris. The ad says. The website owners say the young mother was vetted and that she is serious about her offer. The nurse has reportedly received at least 10 offers, she said some of them appear serious but most of the offers were from perverts. In a report by the Telegarph, the association of French milk banks warned of the “risks linked to the exchange of breast milk between mothers”, including contracting harmful bacteria or viruses, including HIV.

    Read the full story on The Telegraph.

    Photo of breastfeeding mom from Shutterstock 

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