Still holding on!

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Still holding on!

                              (click image to enlarge)

The results of the annual Corruption Perception Index (CPI) survey done by the Berlin-based Transparency International (TI) recently came out. The CPI is the only annual survey that sorts out country corruption levels on a global scale. A CPI score near 10 is categorized as least corrupt, and a score near 1 is more corrupt.

For 2010, the Philippines scored 2.4 and ranked 134th out of 178 countries included in this year's survey.

With this score and rank, the Philippines is part of the 12 most corrupt countries in the world, together with Azerbajian, Bangladesh, Honduras, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Togo, Ukraine and Zimbabwe.

In 2009, the Philippines scored the same CPI (2.4) but ranked 139th out of 180 countries, thereby making it as one of the 13th most corrupt countries in the world.

The country is showing some resilience as it has been holding on since 2008 (see Hold on, Philippines).

Somalia is still at the bottom rung scoring 1.1 in CPI, making it the most corrupt in the world for this year. Interestingly, Somalia held on to this post with the same score in 2009 also.

The top post (least corrupt countries) is shared by Denmark, New Zealand and Singapore with all 9.3 in CPI for this year. Last year, Denmark singly topped the rank with a 9.4 CPI.

In Southeast Asia, the Philippines got worse. With its CPI score and rank, the country holds the position of the 3rd most corrupt in Southeast Asia, next only to Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos. In previous years, the Philippines is better off but has been overtaken by Indonesia, Vietnam and Timor-Leste for this year. Both the Philippines and Timor-Leste are the only predominantly Catholic countries in Southeast Asia.

1. Singapore (9.3)
2. Hong Kong (8.4)
3. Taiwan (5.8)
4. Brunei (5.5)
5. Malaysia (4.4)
6. Thailand (3.5)
7. Indonesia (2.8)
8. Vietnam (2.7)
9. Timor-Leste (2.5)
10. Philippines (2.4)
11. Cambodia (2.1) and Laos (2.1)
12. Myanmar (1.4)
Globally, the Philippines is resiliently holding on (sans the Southeast Asia caveat) for the past 8 years. It has maintained a steady pattern of 2.4-2.6 CPI range from 2002 up to 2010. In 2005-2007, the country showed a steady course for a 3-year CPI of 2.5.

Despite all the unresolved national scandals, the steady pattern is a relieving sigh, although we hardly recovered from the drastic fall of 1999-2002. Our highest CPI is 3.6 (1999), sharply fell to 2.8 (2000), slightly rose to 2.9 (2001) and fell again to 2.6 (2002). During this period, the country was still reeling from the consequences of the Erap Impeachment and the precursor of widespread irregularities in the Estrada Administration.

With the renewed hope and more collective action to resolve current scandals and combat corruption under the Aquino Administration, let us all hold on and hope that our steady pattern in CPI will leap us back to the level of 1999 (3.6).

We have six years!


Oath of Plataea

The rise to the presidency of Benigno Aquino III excites some uncertain future for the country. For the many who are suspicious of him, the future is a bit blight. For the majority who trust him, the future is a hopeful one. It is now up to President Aquino to steer the country's future to the right path, as his Inauguration Address underscored. It is up to him to drive this country out of the mess, as brought about by the past administration.

No matter where the country is going, it always starts from where it is. While the present greatly shapes the future, it is a lot constrained by the past. Moving on means resolving - and not forgetting - past actions, especially past wrongdoings.

The country is like a turtle. Those who want reform are like the turtle's head wanting to forge ahead, but is however strained and held back by its heavy shell of many unresolved scandals.

As President Aquino always reiterated - "there can be no reconciliation without justice... Sa paglimot ng pagkakasala, sinisigurado mong mauulit muli ang mga pagkakasalang ito!"

And he is correct in this exhortation. How can the country move on and face the future if it has unresolved past? The present juncture is a make or break for the country.

We should never forget. NBN-ZTE Broadband Scandal. Fertilizer Fund Scam. Euro Generals. Hello Garci. Lamppost Overpricing. 12-0 Scandal. Maguindanao Massacre. Jose Pidal Account. Cash Gift Scandal. Midnight Deals. Midnight Appointees. Even the Manila Hostage Taking is a consequence of unresolved past. These are some, and many more to come. This is the reason why we should never forget the past, for us to learn our painful lessons. The past should remind us, and hurt us, to move us!

In the Ancient Greek City of Plataea, when the Plataeans fought with the Athenians to win the battle against the invading Persians in 479 BC, they decided to preserve the ruins of the war, subscribing to an oath not to rebuild the sanctuaries destroyed by the invaders. The ruins would remind them of their struggles and pains as a people. The ruins allowed them to remember and learn of their past. The ruins strengthened the Plataeans as they shaped their strong future.

This became part of the Oath of Plataea - remembering the painful past for the future to learn.

Reconciliation without resolution, forgiveness without fairness, judgment without sense of justice are sure formula for committing the same past mistakes.

We need the Oath of Plataea in the Philippines!


Intelligence and integrity

Intelligence without integrity is impunity; 
integrity without intelligence is mediocrity. 
Good leadership has to have both!

Leadership Integrity Forum

The Leadership Integrity Forum is a community coaching site to sustain our leadership coaching and mentoring support to those who went through my managerial leadership classes and leadership integrity seminars nationwide. As we all learned, leadership is always a work in progress. This site is aimed to provide an avenue for continued and sustained learning and sharing from one another's experiences and expertise in the exercise of leadership integrity.

If interested, contact me at cyberron@pldtdsl.net or cybererron@yahoo.com.



Pinagbabayaran ng kinabukasan
ang kasakiman ng nakaraan!
- Pres. Noy!


Solving a problem

No problem can be solved
from the same consciousness
that created it!

- Albert Einstein


Setting the example

Ang unang hakbang ay ang pagkakaroon ng tuwid at tapat na hanay ng mga pinuno. Magsisimula ito sa akin. Sisikapin kong maging isang mabuting ehemplo!

The first step is to have leaders who are ethical, honest and true public servants. I will set the example. I will strive to be a good model. I will not break the trust you have placed in me!

President NoyNoy Aquino
Inauguration Address
June 30, 2010 | Quirino Grandstand



For all the unworthy and the unqualified, especially those who got appointments by sheer political accommodation and connection, resign and relinquish your position.
For once in your life, summon some sense of propriety!
Please, resign and go!

"You have sat too long
for any good you have been doing .....
Depart, I say;
and let us have done with you.
In the name of God, go!"
- Oliver Cromwell


Rule well!

Congratulations to President-elect
Benigno Simeon "NoyNoy" C. Aquino III
and Vice-President-elect
Jejomar "Jojo" C. Binay!

In all honor and integrity -
as the great Scorpion King dispatched -
May God bless you and the country!


The Humphrey-Maxwell Fellows 2009-2010

To see the profile of the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship and the Maxwell Fellows, click on this link.

To view various Fellowship photos, choose albums on this link.


Fellowship as Assimilation

Fellowship as Assimilation
(A Critical Insight)

Dr. Ronnie V. Amorado
Republic of the Philippines
Hubert H. Humphrey Fellow 2009-2010
Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs
Syracuse University, NY

Paper presented at the Fellows' Break-out Sharing Session during the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellows' Global Year-End Retreat held on May 16-19, 2010 at the Rocky Gap Hotel Resort in Cumberland, Maryland USA.

To read the full text, click on this link.

Open Forum Part-1

Open Forum Part-2

Open Forum Part-3


Fellowship as Assimilation

Fellowship as Assimilation
(A Critical Insight)

Dr. Ronnie V. Amorado
Republic of the Philippines
Hubert H. Humphrey Fellow 2009-2010
Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs
Syracuse University, NY

Paper presented at the Fellows' Break-out Sharing Session during the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellows' Global Year-End Retreat held on May 16-19, 2010 at the Rocky Gap Hotel Resort in Cumberland, Maryland USA.

To view the videos, click on this link.

ONE OF THE MANY things I observed in attending the Humphrey activities is its tendency to be US-centric. In the goal of showcasing America to the Fellows from around the globe, what happens is a sharing asymmetry. Fellows learn a lot about America, but how can America learn about the Fellows’ countries and their culture and people?

Or more importantly, how can the Fellows learn from each one's country?

With all the activities in the entire year and exposing the Fellows to the great developments in the US, we can easily forget the problems back in our own countries. We stand in awe, become envious of how this country has become so great and advanced. America has become a benchmark, and the Humphrey Fellowship an inevitable tool for comparison. From the point of view of neo-colonization, this can be a modern form of assimilation. A geopolitical indoctrination embedded in student exchange. Fellows can embrace all that is good and beautiful in this country.

But Hubert Humphrey once said about America: “History teaches us that the great revolutions aren't started by people who are utterly down and out, without hope and vision. They take place when people begin to live a little better - and when they see how much yet remains to be achieved.”

I take the longer and more strategic view in what Humphrey exhorted about seeing what remains to be achieved. While one can agonize on the painful reality of assimilation, I will break free from myopia and turn it into an empowering emancipation.

America is a vantage view. The country is generally clean. Law enforcers are highly esteemed. The museums and public libraries effectively serve as bearer of culture and promoter of heritage. American work ethic is distinguishable, though not necessarily representative of quality of life. Online commerce is excellently established and trusted. But again as Humphrey quipped, to live a little better to see how much remains to be done.

In one of the school visits during last year’s Global Leadership Forum, I can vividly recall when a school principal told me that praying in the classroom in public schools is a criminal offense. How strange to what extent secular hegemony can marginalize religious pluralism. The health care debate is fascinating, at times difficult to understand. While Americans champion the cause of universal education and even spend for those who cannot afford, they remonstrate on health care which is more important than education and a more fundamental requirement for human survival.

America is a vantage point that allows us to see our own countries from afar. Much remains to be achieved when I go back to the Philippines. Not from the benchmark of America; not from the standards of Western progress. Not from emulation, but by convergence and selective appreciation.

My Humphrey Fellowship serves as my torch to appreciate my country’s endowments and inadequacies. By learning from American institutions, my Fellowship should allow me to see how much remains to be done in my part of the world.

It is thus a challenge to each and every Fellow. After about 10 months of immersion in the US, what can we do when we return to our homelands?

Many of us come to the US for exposure. To establish networks. To attend academic programs. Others come for vacation and luxury. Some for future career opportunity. It is my view that a meaningful and productive Fellowship should allow us to produce some clear and tangible outputs in the service of our country. They serve as our strategic plans; Fellows are men and women on mission. As Humphrey Fellows, we act as ambassadors of our countries and maintain the links that bridge us with the United States. With clear outputs, we do not waste our sacrifices to be away from our country and family.

For the Humphrey program, it is also my exhortation to allow for more cross-cultural learning to reduce the asymmetry. We do not come to the US to learn only about America; we also want to learn and understand the countries of our co-Fellows. United States can also learn from us.

To reduce the asymmetry, our fellowship can be a tool for genuine emancipation through systematic cross-learning activities embedded in the Humphrey program. I am sure we want to hear about the history and heritage of our Fellows’ countries. I am sure we can resonate with common problems and thus inspire us to work together.

I therefore end with two important questions for our reflection:

Through the Humphrey Fellowship, how can America learn from the Fellows coming from different countries?

And through the Humphrey Fellowship, how can the Fellows learn from each other’s country?

Our recommendations should be able to help and benefit the succeeding harvests of Humphrey Fellows.

Thank you very much!


Train in Truman's Restraint

There is something to learn from Harry S. Truman (1884-1972), the 33rd US President from 1945-1953 when it comes to wielding political power and restraining its potential abuse or misuse. 

While serving as Vice President, he succeeded the presidency upon the untimely death of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1945. Truman was one of the most controversial US presidents in that most unstable period in World War II. He also holds the lowest and highest public approval ratings in the country's presidential history, but came out as one of the most revered and respected leaders in the US. For two times, he was Time's Man of the Year in 1945 and 1948.

Harry Truman popularized the famous leadership dictum on accountability and command responsibility: THE BUCK STOPS HERE!

Many historians and political analysts agree that Truman's greatness is most felt after his presidency, including his notable demeanor and sense of propriety and simplicity. 

After his term, he got many invitations as adviser or consultant, or offers to sit in corporate and business boards. He was also invited to a lot of commercial endorsements with all the perks. 

He all turned them down, believing that these offers will only invite a lot of conflict of interest. As a former US president, he knew that he would be bringing the prestige, connections and endowments bestowed upon his former office. 

Thus, he was popularly quoted or referred to in various sources by his famous line of restraint: "They were not interested in hiring Harry Truman the person; what they wanted to hire was the former president of the United States. I could never lend myself to any transaction, however respectable, that would commercialize on the prestige and the dignity of the Office of the Presidency!"

When he made a long drive for a speaking engagement, he was stopped and accosted by a New York policeman for making an illegal lane change. He did not use his influence as a former president. In 1971, he thanked Congress for the recognition but refused to accept the Congressional Medal of Honor that the latter planned to bestow on him. 

By learning this brand of Truman's restraint, we can ask and reflect about the (mis)demeanor and (mis)conduct of many of the elected officials in the Philippines after this month's national and local elections.

Who makes use of his or her public office - past and present - for personal or commercial purposes? Who makes use of his or her powers of appointment even if they destroy public trust and integrity? Who makes use of his or her position to further perpetuate in power?

And for the first time in our country's democratic history, a President ran and won as a Representative in Congress and bid to be Speaker of the House. Power begets power!

Even if these actuations are legally allowed, it is a desecration when laws are used without a sense of decency. As Truman suggested, the presidency is a natural habitat for conflict of interest; former occupants of the position must exercise extreme restraint. 

When power intoxicates, and where wielding power is abused and disgraced, all the more we need moderation and propriety. It is of utmost imperative to summon our very deep sense of Filipino delikadeza. 

We need to train in Truman's restraint!


Curse of corruption

May 10, 2010 national and local elections!
10 more days to make or break the country
What will it be? Rise up or fall apart?

Arise my countrymen, 
arise for our integrity!
Cheat, and fall apart as a country!

This is the curse of corruption!

Those who win by cheating 
will rule by cheating
Those who win by buying votes will rule 
by collecting debts in public office!

Spread the word, spread the word!


A Knight's Oath

Be without fear in the face of your enemies.
Be brave and upright that God may love thee.
Speak the truth always, 
even if it leads to your death.
Safeguard the helpless, and do no wrong.
That is your oath! 
Arise, arise a knight!
- Kingdom of Heaven (2005)


What man is a man?

What man is a man,
who does not make 
the world better! 
- Balian of Ibelin, Kingdom of Heaven (2005)


Die to live or live to die?

We live as if we are never going to die,
and we die as if we never lived!

- Anonymous


Die to live or live to die?


A matter of integrity

If you have integrity, 
nothing else matters; 
if you don't have integrity, 
nothing else matters! 
- Alan Simpson, American statesman



A man cannot govern a nation if he cannot govern a city; 
he cannot govern a city if he cannot govern a family; 
he cannot govern a family unless he can govern himself; 
and he cannot govern himself 
unless his passions are subject to reason! 
- Hugo Grotius (1583-1645), 
Dutch philosopher and playwright



It is all set for the national and local elections on May 10, 2010. The campaign period is now full blast for all the elective positions. Our country's fate now rests upon the Commission on Elections' (COMELEC) steadfast resolve to tide us over -- peacefully, safely and credibly until election day.

COMELEC needs to restore and protect the people's confidence and the voters' trust. This is a very critical period for the country and for the elections in disparate crossroads. One leads to genuine hope and change, the other towards a perpetual penury. While the people are choosing - reluctantly, frustratingly or desperately - the COMELEC must strive very hard to drive and bring the country in the right direction.

The people's cast of vote in the elections is the people's cast for COMELEC. Every cast of vote is a cast of COMELEC!

Nevertheless, it's a very rough road and the drive is difficult! We can never ignore, and we will never forget the 12-0 and the Hello Garci scandals! Even the ZTE-Broadband scandal is an outrageous stain (what the "#@%!!!" is the business of the COMELEC chair in economic affairs!). How can the COMELEC restore the people's trust in these trying times! The memory is all coming back when computer technicians walked out because of tabulation fraud in the 1986 snap elections.

Niccolo Machiavelli was correct. When the system is corrupt, the rich and the powerful stand to win; and the weak - even if virtuous - are too frightened and incapacitated to run. It's a mind-boggling mockery, a flaw of democracy where the country's future relies on a corruptible (if not corrupt) system. The mockery has become so disparagingly mundane, that Imelda Marcos was once quoted: “Win or lose, we'll just go shopping after the election!”

The COMELEC needs to reverse the ridicule, especially that this is the first computerized national and local elections in the country. It is also the first time that the presidential position has 9 contending candidates (we would have 10, if not for the disqualification of the KBL prexy aspirant). The elected president will have to face a potential paralysis as a minority president.

About 85,000 candidates will be competing for only about 16,000-17,000 national and local positions, including about 150 party-list organizations. With a 63 million voting population, over 51 million voters are registered. Past figures show that only about 70% or 35-40 million voters actually vote during the election day. Of this figure, the youth - aged 18 to 40 - consist of holding the swing votes since they comprise 40% of the registered voters.

Why are there so many candidates for the upcoming elections? Some good reasons are identified in another blog (Now What, Cat?). People run for public office for media mileage. Some test the waters in case they run again. Others are waiting to be offered to withdraw for whatever illicit deals they may get from withdrawing (like cabinet or ambassadorial position or positions in the government controlled corporations). Surely, many others run for nuisance reasons. Even party list groups are crowded with many questionable identity. The next president should lead in clarifying what constitutes marginalized sectors, and protect their interest by improving sectoral representation through the party-list system.

Thus far, the election season shows how people behave (or misbehave) in their political conduct (or misconduct). Public cynicism gravely impairs public trust and derails the choice of candidates. The American journalist Franklin Pierce Adams was not sarcastic to say: “Elections are won by men and women chiefly because most people vote against somebody rather than for somebody!” Even the German socialist, Oscar Ameringer - reputed as the Mark Twain of American Socialism - was never acerbic to state: "Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, [and] by promising to protect each from the other!"

And the poor electors are as lost as deceived by politicians. Most candidates change their party for the sake of their principles; others their principles for the sake of their party. And by an act of a collective scorn, the people do not necessarily choose the best candidate; they just hope to vote for the one who will do the least harm.

By a preemptive act of caution, I cannot help but believe Josef Stalin in his (in)famous allusion:

Those who cast the votes determine nothing! Those who count the votes determine everything!

So much depends on the COMELEC, 
and thus may God bless this country!


2010 elections need the Athenian Oath!

The upcoming elections on May 10, 2010 is a make or break for the Philippines. Those who will finish their term should be held accountable: have they done more and better for their office than when they got elected into it years ago? As the ancient Athenians exhort – can you transmit the country better and greater than when you ruled it?

The Athenian Oath is the philosophic oath of all free governments and democratic states, of all visionaries, leaders, managers, planners and administrators from around the globe. In a nutshell, the Athenian Oath swears to "leave this community better than when we found it!" At the crux of this pride lies a very strong influence from the Athenian philosophers in the ancient Greeks from over 2,000 years ago.The oath inscribed:

"We will never bring disgrace on this our City, by an act of dishonesty or cowardice.We will fight for the ideals and Sacred Things of the City both alone and with many. We will revere and obey the City's laws, and will do our best to incite a like reverence and respect in those above us who are prone to annul them or set them at naught. We will strive increasingly to quicken the public's sense of civic duty. Thus in all these ways we will transmit this City, not only not less, but greater and more beautiful, than it was transmitted to us!"
For all the candidates running for public post on 2010, what is your oath of doing more and better for the Philippines than what it is today?

By the nature of how election campaigns are done in the country, sincere oaths are pitifully lost in grand rhetorics. There is so much noise in singing, shouting and rallying during campaigns. But we also need to pause and seriously reflect: do the candidates – both national and local – imbue and exude genuine oaths to bring real change to the country?

Moreover, a more serious sense of oath – for clean and credible elections – should also hit the hearts of the electorates. Not promises, not money, not the celebrities. Not the lies and deceits of politicians.

But bet on it, the unworthy and the unqualified will still win. This has always been the case. People just never learn. Let us dare all the candidates and the electors! 

This is our curse: Those who win by cheating will rule by cheating! Those who win by buying votes will rule by collecting debts in public office!

Jose Rizal saw it in his time, and so he cried: "Tal pueblo, tal gobierno!"  As the people are, so is their government!  We will always deserve the kind of officials we elect into office. The great philosopher Plato is hard-hitting: “Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber!

Whatever the outcome of the 2010 elections, Filipinos just deserve it – for better or worse


Blue Valentine

It's a blue Valentine's Day to be far away
but blue roses are as lovely as the red.
Yet, even if my favorite color 
is so alive as a flower,
romance in a foreign winter land
is chilling cold and sadder!

This lovely poem is dedicated to those 
who shared romance with their loved ones 
- from a distance!

On this Valentine's Day
when you are so far, far away
I would not do anything special
that I wouldn’t do for you any other day

So I ask, why wait for some made up day
When I can show you how I feel each day
Kiss on your head, small bite on your ears
What you see is my love overflowing as tears

Flowers, candy, cards and more
Things you can easily buy from a store
But the gift of love I’ve saved for you
But that my darling, you already knew
(c) 2008 by Gerard C. Johnson


Snowy Syracuse

It's snow white here, there and all over! Cool! It's for human eyes' delectation! 

But damn, it's cooold! Freezing temperatures these past weeks. I will never love the winter! But as they say, enjoy the first time; it might be the last time (unless climate change brings snow to the Philippines).

So what's cool and what's not?

Snow is an amazing creation! Flurries are better than rains. But I hate the snow glare or winter glare; it triggers my migraine.

Dread the snow ice when it starts to subside; they're extremely slippery. Black ice is dangerously deceiving; it's every driver's, jogger's and commuter's nightmare.

Fresh cool air, bereft of air pollution whatsoever. But extreme temperature bleeds the nose, whew! (I miss Philippine pollution).

When winter wind combines with snow or rain, it's fatally freezing and biting!

Winter fashion! With all my thermal tops and suits. Bonnets and hoods. Gloves. Neck warmers. Balaclavas. Fleece jackets (I learn to love fleece). Balloon jackets for snow. Winter socks and snow boots. But they're heavy, with 3-4 layers on the tops. Seems like space suits in the movies. Trench coats are my favorites, but not the wools (too itchy to be cool).

My electronic warmer blanket is weird, but it works!

Amazing ski mountain resort. Cool ski gadgets and ski fashion. Poor me, a pure terra firma creature. Couldn't glide on snow and ice, as I don't also swim on water.

Who says you cannot jog on snow? I am really amused to see people jogging on snow, even in shorts, even in dusk where temperatures suddenly drop. I will try jogging on snow, sans the black ice.

Have not tried the snowman, but should soon do so!

So this is snow!



He who guards his lips,
guards his soul!
- Proverbs 13:3


Pains and gains in rains

If you want the rainbow,
you've got to put up with the rain!

- Dolly Parton, American philanthropist

Deep prayer

Strengthen us my Lord 
to be able to hold and keep on 
and not fall apart, 
and stabilize us 
so that we will be able 
to help our family 
and those who are in need!


Prayer for Jet Flight

Please remember me, Lord:
I'm the fidgety one
that's scared to death of heights;
that same one that’s now strapped
so tightly into this plane seat
that my legs are turning purple.

I’ve never liked flying before, Lord,
so You’d do me a great favor
if You’d give this bus with wings
Your undivided attention.

I’ve read novels about jets,
so I know what can go wrong with them:
the tail could blow off, or
the engines could overheat,
it’s not that I’m panicking;
I’ve done that long ago.
it’s just  I tend to worry
about the other passengers.

How do You think they’ll feel, Lord
if I have to be carried off this flight 

in a total collapse?


The 10 Mortal Sins of Development

KNOWLEDGE, it if becomes a tool for oppression
INVESTMENTS, if they destroy the environment
JOBS, if they reinforce exploitation
INCOME, if it becomes excessively profit-oriented
TECHNOLOGY, if it becomes a tool for slavery
INFRASTRUCTURE, if it becomes white elephant
POWER, if it corrupts and self-perpetuates
AFFLUENCE, if it abets poverty

- Anonymous


The 7 Social Sins of Endeavors

Politics without principle
Wealth without work
Commerce without morality
Pleasure without conscience
Education without character
Science without humanity
Worship without sacrifice
- M. Gandhi (1869-1948)


Test of government

It was once said that the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped!
-- Hubert H. Humphrey (1911-1978)