Posted tagged ‘sports’

PACQUIAO VOWS FIGHT VERSUS POVERTY

May 18, 2011

PACQUIAO VOWS FIGHT VERSUS POVERTY

Erle Frayne D. Argonza

Good morning from the Pearl of the Orient!

Manny ‘Pacman’ Pacquiao, world’s best boxer pound-per-pound and the greatest boxer of the century, just defeated California’s prized fighter Mosley. The fight didn’t only highlight the prowess of the world’s best—and that best could extend to being the world’s top athlete today—but more importantly it heralded Pacquiao’s vow versus poverty in the Philippines.

“Boxing isn’t the greatest fight of my life,” declared the Pacman in front of media. “More than boxing, the greatest fight of my life is to end poverty in the Philippines,” he succinctly proclaimed. For a man who originated from the ‘poorest of the poor’ and who rose like a phoenix in a meteoric ascent to global fame and glory, he knows what he is talking about.

I am optimistic the Pacman will give muscles to his words, walk the talk, and redistribute wealth through two sources: (a) the personal wealth he gained from boxing, entertainment, and modeling for commercial products, a wealth that will continue to accumulate in the years ahead; and, (b) national budgetary appropriations, which he will partly approve as a member of the House of Representatives.

Truly one of the most colorful personalities of this century, Pacman’s value formation seems to have molded him well. From out of his personal wealth, he shares bounties to the poor folks—from the athletes who became poor with their decline from fame, to the underclasses who receive benefits through his foundations. He is a compassionate fighter and citizen, making him one of the exemplars for our youth all over the planet.

Poverty and hunger are ailments that been badly addressed in the Philippines across the many decades of development (the development programs began in 1948 yet). Now a middle class economy, the Philippines just might be trapped in the middle class category as it continues to falter in addressing mass poverty.

The factors contributing to poverty & hunger are complex, as they range from the public policy through institutional strength factors. And there’s the demographic factor of rapid population growth, as 2,000,000 new babies are born each year in the country alone (that doesn’t include those born to the 10 Million overseas Filipinos). Such factors continue to drag down PH esteem as it suffers from unimpressive credit ratings, high corruption index, low global competitiveness, and related global ratings.

Sometimes a country would need some superhero types to shore up the drive to salve lingering ailments. And for the Philippines, luck had struck it as one such exemplary figure, the Pacman of the planet, is dipping his hands to enable the achievement by poor folks of the Impossible Dream.

[Philippines, 12 May 2011]

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OLYMPIC PLAYERS ARE MADE BY SPORTS SCIENCE

September 3, 2008

Erle Frayne Argonza

Magandang hapon! Good afternoon!

The term ‘Olympic player’ is synonymous with the term ‘world-class player’. No agency, institution or country today can ever make claims to being world-class without passing through the baptizing fires of the Olympics games and winning medals in them, and any claim to the contrary will be laughed off with guffaws as mere delusional braggadocio. Play the games, be among Top 10 at least, and the team can be considered ‘world class’.

As a development expert, I was asked no more than once to express my opinion about what is the formula to make good athletes. I am very firm on this formula till these days, a formula that I learned since the late 80s yet (when I began my weight training), which I will sum up in a semi-aphorism below:

·         SPORTS SCIENCE makes Olympic athletes, while PHYSICAL EDUCATION makes athletes.

In my own country, which has a very long tradition of physical education or PE institutionalized by the Americans more than a century back yet, we have never been lacking in good PE trainers. I am very certain about this, being an athlete myself (Powerlifter, middleweight division, competed 91-92). However, to my mind, the PE track is not the best pathway to optimize the conversion of ‘raw warm bodies’ into world-class athletes. The formula lies more in Sports Science or Sportsci which is the raging fire in the sports world of the North today.

The main difference between PE and Sportsci is this: while PE can improve one’s ‘kinetic intelligence’, Sportsci improves emotional, social, and mental intelligence as well. During the dinosaur years of the Victorian Era, athletics was looked down upon as mere physical talent thing, and that ancient era (ancient relative to today’s Information Age) gave rise to PE. Unfortunately, that ancient toolery of PE was the one planted by Americans in the Philippines, which is taught as a subsidiary of pedagogy (education), and we got stuck up into it. Bad, too bad, very bad! America had already moved to Sportsci a long time back, while the former colony is stuck up in the mud.

We development experts know our lessons very well concerning our field, and development includes sports & leisure among its facets. The most important aspect of development is the institutional-‘social capital’ side (the stuff of ‘social technologies’), which comprises of over 77% of the success stories of prosperity. Raw materials constitute a measly 5% (the stuff of biotech), while infrastructures-physical intervention comprises 18% (the stuff of physical technology). Among all intervention measures for development, 77% comes from ‘social technologies’—from methods, tools, strategies, tactics of intervening in social capital, capacity-building, human resources and the likes. Build your people well and you’ll build your prosperity well.

Take the case of Japan and Singapore. These countries do not even have a natural resource base to embark on ambitious development pursuits, but hey! look at where they are now. That’s because they knew the development formula well. Natural resources, to repeat, do not constitute the decisive factor in development, which the World Bank & international agencies proclaimed as forming only 5% of development prosperity’s yardsticks. A country such as Burma is so wealthy in natural resources, yet so poor economically and likewise a poor performer in international sports, see?

In today’s context, the moron reasons of ‘lack of money’ and ‘lack of information’ to explicate weak institutions (eg. weak sports capabilities) are simply that: MORON. Those ‘problems’ were the problems of the ancient past. What we have today is a global situation of (a) exceedingly huge money stocks (which in economics is termed as ‘excess liquidity’) and (b) excessive information. Let me stress that: only MORONS keep on saying outmoded lines that do not cohere with reality. And incidentally there are too many of them in society, though I’d prefer not to pinpoint anybody out there lest I be accused of slandering.

In the Philippines for instance, in order to re-engineer our athletics well, all of our trainers have to be re-tooled in the ‘social technologies’ of Sportsci. All new professionals from the university who will handle athletics should get degrees in Sportsci as well, and they should better sustain this with enormous self-studies and a PhD at the maximum. Not only the trainer, but the TRAINING TEAM should be constituted to take charge of the formal training of athletes who should better begin training even as grade schoolers. The TEAM comprises of the Trainer, Nutritionist, Psychologist, Sociologist, Physiologist/Doctor, and not just the old-fogey Trainer of dinosaur days. The TEAM should then be backed up by sufficient provisions at the input level (backward linkage) and output level (forward linkage), the inputs & outputs thus depending on the sport concerned.

This is surely a tall order for the Philippines. Indeed, it is very tall an order, very challenging. It amounts to waging a ‘sports Revolution’, which it is. But what choice do Filipinos have, and likewise those underperforming athletes of powerhouses of emerging markets such as India, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, South Africa, than to go the way of a ‘sports Revolution’, a total innovation or re-engineering of the sports & leisure field.

Even without examining or evaluating the sports successes of Korea, China and Japan, I believe that these countries performed well precisely because they seriously undertook a ‘sports Revolution’ via the technologies of Sportsci. Rather than wallow in cesspools of indecision and mediocrity (eg. MORON  reasoning of ‘lack of money’ and ‘lack of knowledge/information’), the experts of these countries took the challenges head on, first by Japan, then followed by Korea (Seoul), and lastly by China. Look at how their athletes perform today, they lead Asia’s players by many folds!

If one were to ask me today what to do with the dinosaurs, I’d honestly and strongly cogitate to “KILL ALL DYNOSAURS BEFORE THE DYNOSAURS WILL KILL US.” And yes, we underperformers in sports are dying of SHAME each year, and each time an Olympics comes, precisely because we refuse to kill the ‘dinosaurs of our minds’ concerning our reality modalities such as sports & leisure. Let’s all ‘sustain’ our being dinosaurs, and all the more shall we heap up shame and guffaws from the world community.

As for the peoples of developed countries, better be vigilant about your advances in Sportsci. Don’t ever loosen on your cutting edge, never be lackadaisical in your attitudes, but never be arrogant and condescending too. By being otherwise, you too will become dinosaurs of the morrows, and will see your country slide from Olympic fame to the Hades of shame every time the games are held.

So much for those reflections. Have a nice day again!

[27 August 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

OLYMPICS A’BEIJING: CHINA & ASIA RISE IN ATHLETICS

September 2, 2008

Erle Frayne Argonza

Magandang araw! Good day!

Is there any other news that brightens up the world better than the latest Olympics games held at Beijing? Amid the world’s running agog in quagmires of hatred and wars, caused largely by demonic minds among the West’s oligarchy, there are still developments that enchant us even as they stir up hope in a planet that had now moved into a new Dark Age.

The latest Olympics held at Beijing deserve a plethora of praises from everyone, with the greatest accolades given to the People’s Republic of China. With excellent playing grounds nestled on an exquisite ‘bird’s nest’ structure of stunning architectural wonder, excellently organized and provided for, what else can you say of this Beijing sponsorship of the games? Only those rowdy Western Establishment media had raised an unparalleled noise to detract China from its developmental goals, a smear campaign orchestrated by who else other than the oligarchs of the West who would never want any country other than the West’s to go up the prosperity ladder. Only the Herd quacks believe in Western media black propaganda anyway.

It turned out that China performed stunningly well not only because of the superb preparations, but also because its athlete earned the top number of gold medals. Of course the oligarchic Western media has that issue of age-related protest and that uninterestingly impertinent news about the stabbing by a Chinese of a kin of a delegation from some country, and what did those largely impertinent dung earn? They never made a dent on China’s performance in the games. They only highlighted the dirt and corruption of Establishment  media generally.

For us Asians, China’s Olympic rise is very, very important. We now acknowledge that, as far as the development path is concerned, China leads the rest of the pack here in Asia. This is also true for the sports development path which China showed to be doubtlessly the leading nation. The event likewise formally signaled that China was opening its doors to the world as a great civilization once again, which revives notions of an earlier period of Middle Kingdom when a great mighty civilization opened itself up to the world. These developments are happening among the most dynamic regions of Asia by the way, and there is China to lead us here which causes elation.

To recall, there was the pestering question of supposedly polluted air in Beijing which is nothing more than Establishment media’s baloney detraction. The United Nations Environmental Planning or UNEP released a note that shows a different situation altogether: that China has been moving positively towards transforming its vehicular power needs from gas to natural gas and alternatives, greening the city altogether, and other positive moves that belie the media mogul’s and oligarchs’ noisy propaganda. The same issue of pollution, to note, were also raised in the other city venues of the past, and amid such pestering eco-fascist and media quackery, all of the games ensued in the same cities anyway.

There was also that noisy propaganda about China’s handling of Tibet. How little do people realize that the Dalai Lama of Tibet has become a pure politician, and is being handled by the British Intelligence from behind the scenes. The Tibet fiasco was largely orchestrated by operators of the British Empire, the same oligarchic circles who recently egged Georgia to practice some guzzling gun power on Russia over South Ossetia, the same oligarchs who were responsible for the destruction of Afghanistan and Iraq, the same oligarchs who orchestrated the chaotic inflationary situation of gas and grains, the same oligarchs who are now pushing for a World War III that will start with Iran’s bombing sometime late this year or next year.

Just the same, despite the slanders, fiascos, and mudslinging tirades by the Western oligarchy against China, the Beijing Olympics went on. And with China’s lead along the way, Asia’s athletes did shine somehow. This is just the start, and hopefully the Olympics can be sustained across the decades so that future generations can see the re-nascence of Asia into a powerhouse of Hope such as what Asians did in the latest Olympic feat.

So, to the organizers of the Olympics in Beijing from the side of the People’s Republic of China, cheers of victory! Hail the Middle Kingdom!

[27 August 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]

PACQUIAO BEATS DIAZ, RP BOXING SUPREMACY ASSURED

June 29, 2008

PACQUIAO BEATS DIAZ, RP BOXING SUPREMACY ASSURED

Erle Frayne  Argonza

Good afternoon!

Elation and euphoria are back in the Philippines and across the borders today as Manny Paquiao beat David Diaz in the lightweight division of world boxing. Flat on his face in the ring’s floor, Diaz looked like a whacked baby in comatose, ready to face the surgeon for some serious eye and facial injuries sustained during nine (9) rounds of unrelenting offensive from the unbeatable Manny.

From the first through the ninth rounds, Manny Paquiao exhibited superior punching and maneuvering ability and was the clear upper hand points-wise for all of those rounds. His superiority in both speed and power, added to his outstanding maneuvering skill, made him throw every kind of punch on the pathetic Diaz, candidate of America, with ease.

On the 5th round of the game, my compassion as a yogi-mystic began to surface while watching with eyes glued 105% on the TV screen. My compassion was, of course, addressed towards Diaz, whose face already sustained bleeding as early as the 2nd round, and I wished that Manny would knock him out on the 6th round as a matter of compassion. It would be cruel for any professional boxer to go on throwing deadly punches on an enemy who is almost down, and should, in my mind, work out to knock out the opponent early enough so as to minimize heavy injuries that could lead to death at the worse.

That knock out came finally on the 9th round, which made me felt a feeling of relief, and so I exclaimed my jubilation for my compatriot’s victory and compassion. Of course, I thanked God that Diaz is still intact, and was able to stand on his feet at least, thus assuring no further need for surgical operations or whatever. It was just a fight, may this fighter practice more. But like the rest of my kabayans, Manny has warmed our hearts so much again, and on this day he’s the one hero who had united the nation for at least some couples of hours.

Manny is now assured of his Hall of Fame status, with his gaining of a 4th title victory, notwithstanding the awarding to him of the most prestigious World Boxing Council or WBC belt at the 135-lb category. He is also impeccably Asia’s best, as it was the first time that an Asian won four (4) world titles in his career, thus ensuring Asia it’s place in the globe as a continent worth watching for.

Finally, and this is what has given us great pride, Manny’s latest victory has ensured Philippine supremacy in boxing from here on till maybe at least ten (10) years to come. Manny was not just representing himself, but rather he’s the chief icon among couples of others in the middle down to lower weight categories. The coterie of top-gun boxers have made Manila the team to beat, and had swept off Mexico and Thailand as the previous holders of this sports tiara.

For all boxers as a whole, Manny Paquiao’s latest victory had added prestige to the lower boxing weight divisions, and the spotlight of boxing had all the more been focused on these divisions away from the middle-to-heavy weights. He joins the coterie of titans such as De La Joya who earlier gave so much prestige to the lower-to-middle divisions.

 Mabuhay si Manny Paquiao! Mabuhay ang mga Filipino boxers! Mabuhay ang Inang Bayan!

[Writ 29 June 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila]