Wednesday, January 9, 2008

A Lesson in Arithmetic

Do you want to know if you are good in arithmetic? Take this simple test. I did; and my answers are all correct. This was emailed to me by an officemate from Pampanga; and I’d like to share it with you.


Where did this P1.3 billion go?


Subject: Fr. Ed Panlilio - Governor of Pampanga

I’m 100% sure this income disparity is replicated in all the provinces of the Philippines. If we had more Ed Panlilios in our government, we would be just like Singaporein a short time. Read on……

We hope we are witnessing what will be a sustained revolution in good governance in the Province of Pampanga, under its newly elected governor, Fr. Ed Panlilio. According to the Philippine Daily Inquirer of August 26, only one month after Fr. Panlilio assumed his gubernatorial duties, the province’s income from the quarrying of volcanic ash from Mount Pinatubohad reached P29.4 million. (Haulers pay a fee of P300 per truck of volcanic ash that they haul from the quarry.) By contrast, during his predecessor Mark Lapid’s term as governor, the province’s income from the same quarrying operations amounted to only P29 million a year.
This gaping variation in official incomes from the same activity should inspire a new set of textbooks in Arithmetic, especially for the school children of Pampanga. There is nothing like local color and local situations to cultivate comprehension in young minds.

Sample problems: If Fr. Ed’s provincial government can collect P29.4 million in 26 days (we assume no quarrying on Sundays), how much does it collect in one day?

Answer: An average of P1.130 million.

If Fr. Ed’s provincial government collects an average of P1.130 million a day from quarrying operations, how much can it collect in one year of 313 days (365 days less 52 Sundays)? Answer: P353, 690,000, or P354 million.

If Fr. Ed’s provincial government can collect P354 million a year, and Mark Lapid’s provincial government collected only P29 million a year, what is the difference in their official yearly collections?

Answer: P325 million a year.

If Mark Lapid was governor for four years and his provincial government’s annual collections from quarrying amounted to an average of P29 million, how much did his provincial govt. officially collect in four years?

Answer: P116 million.

If Fr. Ed manages to remain as provincial governor for four years, and his provincial government’s annual collection from quarrying were to average P354 million, how much will his provincial government collect in four years?

Answer: P1.416 billion.

What is the difference between P1.416 billion and P116 million?

Answer: P1.3 billion.

Where did this P1.3 billion go?

Answer: Only God and the Lapids know. (’Lapids’ is in plural because Mark, as a second generation political dynast, succeeded his own father, now Sen. Lito Lapid.

We don’t know how much Lito’s provincial government officially collected from quarrying operations during his watch. Should be a good investigative project for media.) If Gawad Kalinga spends an average of P75,000 per low cost house, how many low-cost houses can P1.3 billion build?

Answer: 17,333 low-cost houses.

If the average Pampanga family were to consist of five persons (father, mother, three children), how many people would be benefited by 17,333 low-cost houses?

Answer: 86,665 persons.

End of Arithmetic lesson.

Fr. Ed is to be congratulated for setting a high benchmark for collection from quarrying operations against which his predecessors have a moral obligation to explain why their collections were so low, and against which future governors will be judged by the people of Pampanga.

Volcanic ash, by the way, is a superior building material. Many of the buildings, aqueducts & monuments of the Roman Empirethat have survived for almost 2,000 years are known to have been built w/ volcanic ash, quarried from the environs of Mount Vesuviusafter it erupted in 79 AD.

We don’t expect Fr.Ed’s moral victory in Pampanga to be remembered for the next 2,000 yrs. We would be happy with five, ten or 20 years, enough, we hope, to spawn a moral-revolution- by- example to save the Filipinos from their worst enemies - themselves. GOOD LUCK Philippines!

“Therefore, the primary cause of poverty is not overpopulation of the Philippines! It’s because our country is overpopulated with corrupt officials”!

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