[Blog] The brat prima donna, the Good Guy and the Resilience of the Filipino People. By Jose Mario De Vega

The brat prima donna, the Good Guy and the Resilience of the Filipino People

I refer to the on-going ‘controversy’ concerning a so-called “veteran newscaster” as against a world renowned and widely respected international journalist, Anderson Cooper of CNN.

Mario De Vega

This pertains to the latter’s harrowing report on the ground which is being disputed by the “veteran newscaster” who did not even (up to this day) went to the calamity site (Tacloban).

To quote a portion of the report of Gil Cabacungan, Anderson Cooper-Korina Sanchez tiff goes viral on the Internet, PDI, November 16:

“Sanchez had criticized Anderson in her radio program on Wednesday afternoon on DZMM after he reported on the government’s less than stellar response to the needs of Yolanda survivors. Said the ABS-CBN news anchor: “Itong si Anderson Cooper, sabi wala daw government presence sa Tacloban. Mukhang hindi niya alam ang sinasabi niya. (This Anderson Cooper. He said there was no government presence in Tacloban. It seems he doesn’t know what he is saying).”

“Sanchez’s remarks became a hot topic on Twitter, something that Cooper was not about to let slip by. Said the CNN journalist: “Here’s what I actually said: As for who exactly is in charge of the Philippine side of operation, that is not really clear. I am just surprised. I expected on this Day Five, I thought I may have gotten here very late, that things will be well in hand; it does not seem like that. People are desperate, they do not have any place for shelter. It’s very difficult for people to get food, neighbors are helping out neighbors, water is in short supply, it is a very very bad situation here.”

“Cooper, who arrived in Manila on Monday, took a dig at Sanchez for not being on the ground to do her reporting. “Miss Sanchez is welcome to go there (Tacloban City) and I would urge her to go there. I don’t know if she has, but her husband is the interior minister and I’m sure she can arrange a flight,” he added.”

So, here is a local newscaster who criticized a foreign journalist, except that the former is reporting at the comfort of her news network, while the latter was precisely there at the scene of the colossal tragedy of massive proportions joining the thousands of the people, victims of this unimaginable catastrophe on their everyday hardships, miseries, woes and countless struggles.

The latter has seen eye ball to eye ball the aftermath of the super typhoon; while the former has only seen the after fact, after watching or seeing the live reports of her fellow crew from the television.

Who among these two individuals are credible and believable on their respective reports?

I believe without the shadow of doubt that only a moron, worst a complete idiot of the highest order would support the contention made or the assertion claimed by that local newscaster. This creature I likened to a brat prima donna of baseless broadcasting and good for nothing reporting.

What kind of reporting is that? Reporting inside the bloody studio?

What a shame!

In the scathing and strong words of Film Icon and Director Peque Gallaga:

“What our leaders tell us is contradicted by the reports from the international commentators who are understandably more objective and growing less dispassionate as they witness the horrors around them. What our leaders tells us is also contradicted by the victims in these areas who are slowly able to give us the true picture of the realities of the situation. And the reality is that people are starving. The dead still lie on the streets even five days after the event. There are anguished souls scavenging for whatever they can survive, as well as professional looters ambushing the helpless and relief caravans. It’s a warzone out there.”

This prima donna brat of local news casting has the galls and the think face to ridicule and criticize a good man, when in fact that man has the guts and the balls to go to the bloody field and report from there live, together with the survivors.

Again to quote Director Gallga’s rant and stinging criticism:

“So I very much care now where all this help is going. I read Marvin Xanth Geronimo who was there when Yolanda struck: that TV personalities and politicians like Mar Roxas and Ted Failon going to Tacloban for the photo op. they never helped; endless tracking video shots of flattened towns with people walking clutching a plastic bottle of water with no government presence whatsoever; Korina Sanchez calling Anderson Copper “misinformed”. Copper was in Tacloban. Korina was not; the US landing 5 planes full of goods and not allowing any politicians to touch any of it. How much more do we need for us to realize that the enemy was not Yolanda? Yolanda was just a force of nature. The enemy is our leaders. And the leader of our leaders is the President.”

Rather than criticizing those good for nothing leaders, who at most are only good at alarming and frightening the people prior to the arrival of the typhoon, yet so bloody slow, as slow as the snail to come, to respond and help after the typhoon has left, the brat has instead criticized unjustly a man who is rightly and greatly doing his job.

Rather than criticizing and calling the attention of the national leadership for somehow “abandoning” the other areas that were also hit such as Eastern Samar, Antique, Capiz, Panay Islands, Palawan, Cebu’s coastal towns and other far-flung remote areas (such as Homonhon Island), this local “news caster” instead has shown her bias and prejudice by attacking Mr. Cooper for something which he did not even say in the first place.

Rather than criticizing those politicians which the United Nations has specifically named by giving strict order to the US military that those donations and the relief goods was not to be touch, the prima donna instead has directed her bullet to a good man who is doing and carrying out his duties on the field.

How on earth would it be possible that a man who is on the field of battle could be misinformed and a creature is so informed when that creature has merely staying and reporting at the four corners of her bloody office?

Well, in fairness to this creature, it was reported that she went to Ormoc; yet I am wondering why she did not bother to go to Tacloban? She did not go to that place, yet she has the galls and the thick face to question the integrity and accuracy of the people who went to the place! Wow!

That is the heights of absurdity and the greatest mockery of all time! Shame! Bloody shame!

In criticizing a good man, in such a vulgar and baseless manner, this idiota has shown the whole world how idiotic and pathetic she is. She completely made a fool out of her foolish self!

I wonder what would be her reaction to the following observations and field reports of the other foreign press/journalists.

Consider the pronouncements/observations of the following members of the international media:

“There does not seem to be an effective operation to get help to those in need.” — Jon Donnison, BBC

“It is certainly not organized.” — Paula Hancocks, CNN

“There is no real evidence of organized recovery or relief.” — Anderson Cooper, CNN

“Minimal amounts of aid have reached the worst-hit areas”. — Tania Branigan, The Guardian

Is there a reasonable ground to believe, it possible that all of them are misinformed, too?

How about the sister of the President himself, Ms. Kris Aquino who also believes that the government is quite slow responding to the needs of the victim, will that brat newscaster also lambast her as “misinformed”?

The Resilience of the Filipino People

I overwhelmingly concur with the report of Luigene Yanoria of the Yahoo Southeast Asia Newsroom, November 15th, “International media laud Filipino reliance amid ‘worst disaster’ Yolanda”:

“When the world looks at the Philippines, they won’t remember the worst typhoon to hit the earth—they will recall how strong Filipinos are, too.

“Seven days on, the world’s eye remains on the Yolanda-battered nation as international media like CNN, BBC, Al Jazeera, NBC, ABC, and CBS—dispatch their topnotch journalists to deliver updates on the record-breaking typhoon.

“Leading the pack of foreign journalists on the ground is CNN’s Anderson Cooper who’s been ironically making headlines of himself due to a report where he mentioned the lack of national government support in the badly-hit Tacloban City.

“But for the veteran journalist who has so far covered the world’s biggest disasters, Filipinos show incredible strength even when aid seems bleak.”

As Anderson Cooper said in the November 15 broadcast of AC360:

“The Filipino people–the people of Tacloban, and Samar and Cebu and all these places where so many have died—they’re strong not just to survive the storm; but they are strong to have survived the aftermath of the storm…

“They have survived for a week now often with very little food, with very little water, with very little medical attention…”

Response to President Benigno Aquino III’s comment

The President appealed to the (practically the international) media for them “to use your role to uplift the spirits of the Filipino people — to find stories of resilience, hope and faith, and show the world just how strong the Filipino people are” and to observe accuracy in reporting. Mr. Cooper underscored that that is also what they strive for as well.

As he stated categorically: “Accuracy is what we care most about here at CNN.”

The Question of Accuracy, Credibility and the Truth

Mr. Cooper said in narrating the horrendous aftermath and also highlighting the resilience of the Filipinos:

“They have survived for a week now, often with very little food, with very little water, with very little medical attention.

“Can you imagine the strength it takes to be living in shock, to be living, sleeping on the streets next to the body of your dead children? Can you imagine that strength? I can’t. And I’ve seen that strength day in and day out here in the Philippines. And we honor them with every broadcast that we do…”

The brat prima donna meanwhile has yet to even set foot on Tacloban and smell the stench of death on the air.

Question:

Again, to reiterate the point: who do you believe between these two individuals?

Mr. Cooper is a foreigner, but after what he did, doing a fine job and that is reporting the truth, no matter how painful it is, no matter how inconvenient and uncomfortable it is to the powers that be, I, on behalf of the Filipino people is hereby adopting him, now as a part and as a member of the Filipino people!

Mr. Cooper, maraming-maraming salamat po! Mabuhay po kayo!!!

Jose Mario Dolor De Vega

Philosophy lecturer
College of Arts and Letters
Polytechnic University of the Philippines

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