By ARNOLD PADILLA
Consumers face continuing injustice as they shoulder additional power costs (on top of possible rotating brownouts) while Meralco delays accounting for its over-collections that could reach more than P7 billion. Thus, it is very reasonable for consumers to demand that whatever planned rate increases by Meralco must be disallowed by the ERC.

By ARNOLD PADILLA
In a poor country where one out of two people dies without receiving any medical attention, where more than half of the population do not have access to basic health care, community-based health workers who provide needed services to fill this health-care gap should be heralded as heroes, not thrown to jail and tortured.

Related blog post: The AFP is telling us we need more NPA guerrillas

By ARNOLD PADILLA
Whoever becomes the next president will have to run a government that is almost P5 trillion deep in debt and with a budget deficit of P300 billion or more. Thus, whatever promises about providing for the basic needs of the people especially the poor are empty rhetoric unless candidates disclose how they intend to address the worsening fiscal situation.

By ARNOLD PADILLA
There’s good news for its close to five million customers to start the New Year, said utility giant Manila Electric Power Co. (Meralco). It claimed that its January billing will go down by 30.5 centavos per kilowatt-hour (kWh) due to lower generation and transmission charges. But Meralco did not say that the said reduction is just one side of the story.

By ARNOLD PADILLA
To a certain degree, Executive Order 839 questioned the lies long peddled by the oil companies and staunch defenders of neoliberalism about neoliberal free market economics. If left unchallenged, EO 839 could become a precedent in policy making: that the government, in the name of public good and welfare, could take decisive action against abusive corporations.

By ARNOLD PADILLA
While it is supposed to be based on the Oil Deregulation Law, the executive order mandating the recent price rollback in effect puts into question the wisdom of oil deregulation. Moreover, the oil companies have found a way to offset whatever “losses” they would incur in Luzon due to the EO: by overpricing in the Visayas and Mindanao.