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Thread: General Manny Pacquiao Topics

  1. #21

    Re: General Manny Pacquiao Topics

    manny pacquiao retired hatton, dela hoya, clottey and mosley. morales and barrera still fight, but manny practically retired those guys from elite competition. the joke going around boxing fora now is that manny's latest retirement is that of ross greenburg of hbo.

  2. #22

    Re: General Manny Pacquiao Topics

    Pampataba ng puso niyo:

    Pacman/HP Commercial

    Understand? / ¿Entiendes?

  3. #23

    Re: General Manny Pacquiao Topics

    PacMan announces his intention to run for VP in 2016. The bad part about this is no one from his camp told him he is still not qualified to the age requirement (40 years old dapat). I don't know if this is a joke but please think before you would run. Show us something what you have done in Congress.
    "The end justifies the means"-from Machiavelli? Nope.  :D

  4. #24

    By Conrado de Quiros

    Philippine Daily Inquirer

    10:26 pm | Monday, November 25th, 2013

    All of Manny Pacquiao’s fights have imposed a tremendous burden on him. Each time he fought in the past, I’d worry about him losing. Of course there’s always that possibility in any fight and with any fighter, but such has become our level of expectation, no, of faith, that he would naturally win, I’d dread what would happen if he lost. Other people say, “Death is not an acceptable excuse,” we say, “Defeat is not an acceptable option.” At least with our hearts if not with our mouths.

    It’s too monstrous to contemplate, which went beyond contemplation to reality last year when the “Pambansang Kamao” not only got beaten but got beaten to a pulp. Everywhere in the world, at home and abroad, Filipinos walked about like the Taclobanons after Supertyphoon “Yolanda.” The devastation was complete. The spectacle of Pacquiao lying senseless on the canvas for an eternity—one worried at that point the eternity might be literal—so shocked Filipinos they trooped out of the movie houses in silence, unable to comprehend what had just happened.

    But none I think brought more weight on Pacquiao’s aging shoulders than this last fight. He put it there himself, quite apart from his torn and bleeding nation, vowing never again to fail his countrymen. He had cried twice this past year, he said, his heart wrung by two horrors. The first was not when he was decked out by Marquez—he had had come to accept it as a fact of boxing life, or death—but when he saw the pain and grief and desolation in the eyes of his countrymen when he came home. The second was when he saw the pain and grief and desolation in the eyes of the Taclobanons after Yolanda.

    He was going to win this fight. Defeat was not an acceptable option.

    Win it he did.

    In a way that rolled back his defeats of the past year, in a way that rolled back the debris in Tacloban, in a way that rolled back the hands of time itself. This wasn’t the Pacquiao who lost cataclysmically to Juan Manuel Marquez. This wasn’t the Pacquiao who won against Timothy Bradley though was cheated barefacedly of it: In a way that was a defeat too because he looked slow and listless and aging in it. This was the Pacquiao who went through Ricky Hatton, Oscar de La Hoya, Miguel Cotto, Shane Mosley and Antonio Margarito and left them torn and bleeding, or with faces their mothers would be hard put to recognize.

    The speed was back. I hadn’t seen him this fast in a long time, his lateral movement in full display, turning right and left on a dime, befuddling and frustrating his opponent. Indeed, amply demonstrated by Brandon Rios taking roundhouse swings at him after cornering him, or thinking he had cornered him, only to slice air. Not just once or twice, but again and again, drawing roars and laughter from the crowd. It was like that NBA advertisement of Chris Paul where he goes poof, nibbles French fries with Magic Johnson and Steve Nash in a bar, and materializes back in the game. Pacquiao’s sudden disappearance from Rios’ view had that same now-you-see-me-now-you-don’t quality.

    There were changes of course. Some of the power had disappeared too. A couple of years ago, that flurry of punches would have sent his opponents wobbling. A whole series of them would have sent them to sleep. Pacquiao himself would say it was a testament only to his opponent’s toughness, and he marveled at it: “I hit him with lefts and rights and he was still standing.” In the last couple of rounds, Freddie Roach would say, he had the chance to take Rios out but wouldn’t take it. Again Pacquiao had an explanation for it: He had learned his lesson from his fight with Marquez.

    Roach however had quite another: Alas, boxing-wise, Pacquiao has discovered compassion.

    Indeed, Pacquiao looked every inch like a changed man: more subdued, more introspective, stronger. Stronger, that is, in spirit, though he may very well have grown stronger in body too. The cockiness was gone. He had been chastised by his crushing defeat in the hands of Marquez but, unlike Hatton whom he too had crushed and who had fallen by the wayside afterward, he had not been bowed. He had clawed his way back by dint of his belief in himself, by dint of his belief in his duty to his countrymen, by dint of his belief in his God.

    It seems almost unimportant at this point where he goes from here. What is important is that he has plucked himself out of the clutches of defeat and risen to become champion again, with or without the belt. What is important is that he has plucked his countrymen, particularly the storm-ravaged and hope-deprived, from the clutches of despair, with or without the knockout. I said yesterday I thought Pacquiao needed nothing less than a knockout to revive his career, but this wasn’t just the next best thing, this was an even better thing. It wasn’t just that this was a rout, as complete and utter as anything boxing has seen. It was that this rediscovery of form, this display of inner strength, this show of compassion wasn’t just career-reviving, it was life-affirming.

    Certainly, it was so for those who watched the fight in the schoolhouses, gymnasiums and relief shelters of Tacloban. The same people who just a couple of weeks ago huddled in the cold and dark, in wind and rain, to watch the dying of a city and grieve over the deaths of loved ones. More than the tons relief given by the aid-givers, this was relief of an order that slaked more than hunger and thirst. More than the comfort and sympathy offered by the bishops and the government officials and the humanitarian groups, this was balm to wound, a candle in the night.

    Manny Pacquiao needed a crack at redemption and his countrymen a crack of salvation.

    Last Sunday, he supplied both. Despair was not an acceptable option.

  5. #25
    Why Rios stayed on his feet


    By Joaquin M. Henson

    (The Philippine Star) | Updated November 26, 2013 - 12:00am

    MACAU – Manny Pacquiao failed to knock out Brandon Rios in their 12-round bout for the vacant WBO International welterweight crown at the Cotai Arena inside the Venetian Resort Hotel here Sunday morning and fans are wondering why because it seemed relatively easy to hit the slow-moving target.

    Here are 10 possible reasons why Rios got off the hook.

    • Rios tough as nails. BamBam proved he can take a punch. He got banged up by Manny, downstairs and upstairs. In the first round, it looked like Pacquiao scored a knockdown but inept referee Geno Rodriguez ruled it a slip. But even if Rodriguez called a knockdown, Rios would have easily beat the count. He was up in a flash from his “slip.” Rios established his durability more than ever before.

    • Pacquiao losing his touch. The ring icon hasn’t stopped an opponent since Miguel Cotto in 2009. His last five wins were on points. Is Pacquiao unable to bring up his power to impact on bigger fighters? As he gets older, is his power diminishing? Pacquiao hammered away at Rios but couldn’t put him down.

    • Pacquiao held back. When he fought Antonio Margarito, Pacquiao could’ve finished off the Mexican but opted to keep him on his feet. He took pity on Margarito who suffered a fractured orbital bone in losing a decision. Freddie Roach said Pacquiao could’ve disposed of Rios in the last two rounds. The decision to go the full route was strictly Pacquiao’s. Rios was battered, bloodied and bruised. Pacquiao did enough to win the decision by a comfortable margin and had no heart to bludgeon Rios into submission.

    * * * *

    • Pacquiao worked on his stamina. With newly-designated conditioning coach Gavin McMillan, Pacquiao did away with a lot of Alex Ariza’s drills. Coming from back-to-back losses, it was critical for Pacquiao to regain his confidence by fighting more rounds instead of less. “Manny needed the workout,” said Argentinian cutman Miguel Diaz. The implication was Pacquiao carried Rios until the final bell.

    • Pacquiao wary of a lucky punch. Last December, Pacquiao sensed that Juan Manuel Marquez was on the way down and pressed his attack even with less than 10 seconds left in the round. As Pacquiao moved in for the kill, he got careless. Marquez tagged him with a right straight smack on his face. Pacquiao collapsed face down and was out cold for a few minutes. The memory of that tragedy is in the back of Pacquiao’s mind. Pacquiao didn’t want the same thing to happen to him against Rios.

    • Punishment for Rios. For his bad-mouthing and trash-talking, Pacquiao wanted to administer a clinical beating, punish Rios and torture him. A quick knockout ending would’ve been anticlimactic. Pacquiao deliberately kept Rios on his feet so he could pummel him repeatedly. He saved him for a beating he’ll never forget.

    • Rios’ stonewall defense. Sometimes fighting like Joshua Clottey defensively, Rios held both arms close with his elbows near the midsection and the gloves held up high to protect the face. Pacquiao tried to break down Rios’ defense by probing for an opening and sneaking in punches through the stonewall. Rios sacrificed his offense for defense, avoiding a shameful exit by knockout.

    * * * *

    • Rodriguez threw off Pacquiao’s rhythm. The referee allowed Rios to tie up and roughhouse Pacquiao. There were warnings but never a deduction to dissuade Rios from using dirty tricks. With Rios getting away with bullying tactics, Pacquiao had to improvise and couldn’t get the flow to create the angle for a knockout.

    • Ring rust. Pacquiao hadn’t fought in nearly a year or since losing to Marquez in Las Vegas. He displayed excellent footwork and hand-eye-foot coordination. But it’s possible his offensive motor wasn’t tuned up for precision. It was a timely workout for Pacquiao to shake off the rust from a long layoff.

    • Pacquiao afraid to inflict permanent damage. With Rios on the receiving end for most of the fight, Pacquiao could’ve intensified the heat and sent BamBam to the hospital. But the point of boxing is not to maim an opponent. Pacquiao wanted to unravel his boxing skills and used his speed to execute.

    Some fans were disappointed that Pacquiao didn’t shut Rios up with a devastating knockout. They wanted the Bad Boy to bite the dust and grovel. Other fans were content to witness Pacquiao’s masterful display of boxing skills, speed and movement with no concern for a knockout. The bottom line was Pacquiao beat Rios convincingly on points. It didn’t matter that Rios wasn’t knocked out. Pacquiao got his 12-round workout to regain his form, timing, reflexes and confidence and did it at Rios’ expense.
    Last edited by Sam Miguel; 11-26-2013 at 10:12 AM. Reason: Quinito is a genius

  6. #26
    Rios breaks down after painful loss

    By Dino Maragay

    ( | Updated November 26, 2013 - 3:46am

    MACAU – The pain of losing the biggest fight of his career – in a lopsided manner – turned out to be too much to bear for Brandon Rios.

    In a video that appeared on YouTube, Rios couldn’t hold back his tears during an interview with journalist Crystina Poncher at the post-fight presser of his bout with Manny Pacquiao at the Venetian Resort here.

    At first, Rios made sure to stress that Pacquiao didn’t hurt him throughout the fight, which ended up in a one-sided decision victory for the Filipino.

    The Mexican-American banger tried to explain what transpired in the ring that time.

    “Every time I threw (punches), I felt like I was gonna get countered,” Rios, who was then sporting a pair of shades to cover the cut and bruises he sustained, told Poncher.

    Then he started breaking down.

    “I trained my a** off to win,” he said, eventually turning away from the camera in an effort to compose himself. He then returned to finish the rest of the interview.

    “It hurts me bad because I... I've liked, worked my a** off so hard. Five months in the gym, training, training, training. And I think it was the best camp ever. It happens. Then it goes the other way,” explained Rios, who was still trying to hold back his tears.

    Through most of the fight, Rios was at the receiving end of flurries from Pacquiao, who in a fine display of footwork and head movement didn’t leave room for his foe to significantly respond. The Oxnard, California-based slugger ended up suffering the worst beating of his career.

    At one moment during the interview, Poncher tried to console Rios, pointing out that he lost to a world-class fighter like Pacquiao – something one couldn’t be ashamed of.

    But Rios just couldn’t hide his grief.

    “He's very fast, he's very awkward. It hurts really bad. It felt like, I let my team down... because I tried and we worked so hard and we were so confident and everything. That's where it hurts,” he continued.

    Being the proud warrior he is, however, Rios vowed to return as much a better fighter.

    “I'll bounce back. You learn from your mistake. I'll bounce back,” he ended.
    Last edited by Sam Miguel; 11-26-2013 at 10:20 AM. Reason: Repetition

  7. #27
    Pacquiao staggered by BIR tax punch

    By Aquiles Z. Zonio, Michelle V. Remo

    Inquirer Mindanao, Philippine Daily Inquirer

    4:33 am | Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

    GENERAL SANTOS CITY, Philippines—One of the world’s richest athletes, boxing icon Manny Pacquiao, is fighting out of the ring with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) over a P2.2-billion tax delinquency case.

    “My lawyers will eventually settle that issue with the BIR,” said Pacquiao, who returned on Monday to a hero’s welcome in his hometown directly from Macau after his masterful conquest of Mexican-American Brandon Rios in a welterweight bout.

    The BIR issued a warrant of “distraint” early this year against the bank accounts of the eight-division boxing champion after it said he failed to remit taxes amounting to P2.2 billion to the government on his earnings from top-billed prizefights in the United States in 2008 and 2009.

    Under the National Internal Revenue Code, the issuance of the warrant is allowed as a civil remedy to collect taxes from delinquency.

    The amount being demanded by the BIR is much bigger than the P1.8 billion in total assets and net worth declared by Pacquiao, who is also Sarangani representative, in his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN).

    Court case

    Pacquiao did not pay the amount or protested the BIR assessment, but instead filed a case in the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) in Quezon City to nullify the warrant.

    Last week, the CTA issued a “status quo ante” order restraining both parties from engaging in any action against each other pending a review of the case. It will issue a ruling on Dec. 5.

    In a press conference late Tuesday afternoon, however, Pacquiao unleashed punches against the BIR, insisting that his conscience is clear and that all his tax liabilities with the government were properly paid. He appealed to the agency to lift the warrant.

    “There are many crooks in the government whose bank accounts and properties were not subjected to garnishment,” he said in Filipino. “I had absorbed many blows just to earn money and give pride to the nation, but this is what happened.”

    “I could not withdraw a single centavo from my own money,” he claimed. “I could not use my money to help especially those who are victims of the calamity.”

    Borrowing from friends

    He said he had to borrow money from friends to keep his promise to help the survivors of Supertyphoon “Yolanda” in the Visayas. His plan to distribute relief items to them might be delayed because of the BIR action, he added.

    The BIR confirmed the local bank accounts of Pacquiao and his wife, Jinkee, had been frozen, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported. “According to the collection division we have issued a garnishment of his bank accounts,” Dino Somera, litigation division official of the tax bureau, told AFP.

    Somera said he did not know how much money was in the bank accounts of the couple, the AFP report added.

    Pacquiao explained that the tax case stemmed from his failure to include the multimillion-dollar taxes deducted by the US Internal Revenue Service from his 2008 and 2009 fight earnings when he reported his income to the BIR.

    “The IRS gave us a copy of the taxes deducted from my earnings covering that period. Unfortunately, the BIR refused to honor the copy of tax deduction credited by the IRS,” he said.

    He claimed that the BIR was demanding a certified true copy of the IRS document.

    In Manila, Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares said a Filipino who generated income in another country during a temporary visit and remitted the corresponding income tax to that country’s government would still have to fulfill certain obligations to the BIR.

    In particular, she said, the individual should still report to the BIR the earnings generated abroad and provide documentary evidence that the corresponding taxes had been paid to the foreign government.

    “They [Filipinos generating income abroad] have to report and show proof that taxes had been paid,” Henares told the Inquirer.

    Tax treaty

    The Philippines and the United States have a tax treaty, which is meant to prevent “double taxation”—which happens when an individual pays full income tax in the foreign country and also pays full income tax in the Philippines for the same income.

    But Henares said such treaty did not automatically exempt any Filipino from reporting to the BIR and submitting documents that would prove claims of tax payments.

    “He [Pacquiao] had been given the opportunity to show this [proof of tax payment to the United States] for the past two years, but he failed to do so,” she said.

    His legal counsel, Franklin Gacal Jr., earlier said Pacquiao was not engaged in “hocus-pocus” when it came to declaring his earnings as a boxer.

    “He could not hide his total earnings. The BIR could easily monitor it because all his commercial endorsements and boxing fights were covered with contracts,” Gacal said.

    Typhoon relief

    Pacquiao said he would keep his promise to visit areas ravaged by Yolanda and distribute relief items to survivors who have hardly received assistance. His mother, Dionisia, hails from Leyte province.

    “With God’s help, we will always find a way. We will overcome this challenge,” he told the Inquirer by phone.

    Pacquiao said he might fly out to the Visayas Wednesday or Thursday and would ask his mother to accompany him. “My wife can’t join because she’s pregnant and the trip might endanger her condition,” he explained.

    He said he had been eager to visit the typhoon-ravaged areas even before his fight in Macau, but his American coach, Freddie Roach, advised him to postpone it as he was at the final stage of his preparations against Rios.

    The Filipino ring sensation has dedicated his victory over Rios to his countrymen, particularly the typhoon survivors.

    Pacquiao, known to be generous in sharing his blessings, said he could not say yet how much he was donating to the survivors. “We should find out how many have not yet received aid or had been given only once since the relief operations began,” he said.

    Last year, Forbes magazine listed him as the 14th-highest-paid athlete globally with an estimated $34 million in earnings.—With an AFP report

  8. #28
    Court of Tax Appeals denies ordering freeze on Pacquiao assets

    By Tetch Torres-Tupas

    6:24 pm | Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

    MANILA, Philippines—The Court of Tax Appeals denied reports that it has issued a freeze order over the P2.2-billion assets of boxing champion Manny Pacquiao.

    “There is no freeze order,” CTA first division Clerk of Court Margaret Guzman said.

    The CTA first division is handling Pacquiao’s tax evasion case. It is also handling the motion filed by the boxing champion to suspend the warrant of distraint and/or levy issued by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)

    Under the Tax Code, a warrant of distraint and/or levy (WDL) is issued to enforce collection of the assessment of tax liability of a taxpayer.

    Lawyer Claro Ortiz, chief of the BIR enforcement and advocacy service, said the WDL was issued last July but Pacquiao’s camp filed a motion to suspend before the CTA.

    Ortiz, in a text message, said they started enforcing the WDL but with an existing agreement with the Pacquiao camp, they have not pushed through with its enforcement.

  9. #29
    Being a hero

    By Randy David

    Philippine Daily Inquirer

    10:23 pm | Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

    A day after returning to a grateful and adoring nation from his redemptive win over Brandon Rios in Macau, boxing legend and Saranggani Rep. Manny Pacquiao faced the press to complain about the way Philippine tax officials have been treating him. The Bureau of Internal Revenue apparently had earlier ordered a freeze on all his local bank accounts pending full payment of his tax obligations. Pacquiao claims he has been conscientious in paying his taxes both in the United States and in the Philippines. But, according to the BIR, he has tax deficiencies on his boxing earnings abroad in 2008 and 2009.

    The crux of the matter seems to be the boxer’s failure to submit a certified true copy of a document showing the taxes collected from him by the US Internal Revenue Service. The BIR recognizes that such taxes are deductible from a Filipino national’s tax liabilities in the Philippines so long as proof of payment is presented. Pacquiao says the BIR insists on seeing the original document and has refused to accept a copy.

    We can be certain that there are no issues here that a reasonably good tax lawyer cannot sort out. The legal questions appear to be simple. It is the context, however, that is rich in complexity. Because it is complex, one needs subtlety and cautiousness in dealing with it.

    Pacquiao has said many times that his mission in Macau was not just to avenge his two previous defeats but also, more importantly, to bring happiness to the Filipino people in this time of overwhelming grief and depression. Without any doubt, he has tremendously succeeded in both objectives. It was uplifting to see a mature and skillful boxer like him dispose of his opponent not by a lucky knockout punch but in a dazzling display of total superiority in speed and punching power. I’m not a boxing analyst, but I think his duel with Rios will long be remembered as one of Pacquiao’s best fights.

    It was equally wonderful to watch the viewers in the devastated areas rise from their seats and punch the air with their fists every time their idol connected to Rios’ swollen face. It was as though they were furiously hitting back at the winds and storm surges brought by “Yolanda.” Pacquiao has given the supertyphoon’s survivors a catharsis beyond compare.

    But, I wonder if our “pambansang kamao” has not somehow diluted the purity of his victory by choosing this moment to bring up the banality of taxes. It is not clear from the reports when the order to freeze his bank accounts was issued. It could not have been on the day of his actual return from Macau. That would have been the height of stupidity and ineptness on the part of the BIR. It is likewise not clear how much money there is in these accounts. But for Pacquiao to say that because of the freeze on his deposits he has had to borrow money to pay his expenses is to strain the imagination. All his big fights have been held abroad, yet he has no accounts abroad?

    He says he is eager to visit the disaster victims in Samar and Leyte to bring them his own donations, but that his admirable intentions are being hampered by the freeze order from the BIR. What terrible villains these government officials are! But, one could sense there is more to this than meets the eye.

    We are in the midst of a gathering political storm. We have a government that is perceived, rightly or wrongly, to be grossly incapable of protecting the public coffers from being pillaged by corrupt politicians and other government officials. Yet, this is the same government that relentlessly pursues ordinary citizens who quietly earn an honest living for their supposed failure to pay their taxes in full. Now, Manny Pacquiao himself has decided to bring this paradox to the fore. “There are many crooks in the government whose bank accounts and properties are not subjected to garnishment,” he said in Filipino at his press conference. “I have absorbed many blows just to earn money and give pride to the nation, but this is what happened.”

    Although he is quick to say that his travails with the taxman have nothing to do with the President, his lament is heard as more than just a way of softening the BIR. He is making a political statement. Without saying as much, he is hinting that some people are doing this to him because they see him as a force to contend with in the 2016 national elections. Is he?

    Given our culture and the immense popularity he enjoys, I believe he is. He has great charisma, and is the perfect personal validation of the poor man’s highest aspirations. In a time of great disaffection with conventional politicians, it is natural to think of him as an alternative. But if he has presidential ambitions, he will have to wait until 2022, because he will still be below 40 in 2016. Still, he is a sure winner if he runs for senator. He will be a big asset in any presidential aspirant’s campaign.

    But from what I have seen of Manny Pacquiao’s presence in Congress, which isn’t much, I think he is no different from those icons of popular culture that rode on mass adulation to launch a career in politics. They neither have a vision of a transformed society nor a coherent program of government. Their political habits—mostly revolving around patronage and dynasty-building—are incorrigibly backward. But, more crucially, they suffer from a lack of an organized constituency from which they can draw the political strength they need to end the privileges of the traditional oligarchy that rules our country. Manny Pacquiao is a greatly admired hero to our people. He should value and keep that role by staying out of politics.

    * * *

  10. #30

    By Conrado de Quiros

    Philippine Daily Inquirer

    10:22 pm | Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

    My first thought was: Has the government gone suicidal?

    That was after I saw Manny Pacquiao complaining to the press a day after his bout with Brandon Rios about the shoddy treatment he got from the Bureau of Internal Revenue. The BIR, he said, had just frozen his bank deposits along with his properties. Consequently he had nothing to give to the survivors of “Yolanda,” to whom he had promised his personal help and to whom he had dedicated his fight. But not to worry, he told the Taclobanons, he had borrowed P1 million from friends to be able to come to their aid.

    He protested the freeze order as unjustified, saying he had already paid his taxes in the United States, a practice recognized in this country. The BIR just refused to recognize it. “I am not a criminal or a thief, I am not hiding anything. The money that was garnished by the BIR is not stolen. It came from all of the punches, beatings, blood and sweat that I endured in the ring.” Why is it, he asked, that crooks in this country are treated better than honest and hardworking people?

    BIR chief Kim Henares dismisses Pacquiao’s complaint. It’s all his fault, she says. The BIR has given him all these years to comply with its requests to submit the necessary documents. He hasn’t. All he has submitted is a letter from US promoter Top Rank saying he has paid his taxes in the United States. “This is a mere scrap of paper; anyone can write that.” Request has turned to demand, and the BIR has enforced it. It just so happened the ruling of the tax appeals court’s First Division to freeze his deposits came out the day after he won the fight. The court made the ruling two weeks ago.

    In any case, Henares says, the court has frozen only two of Pacquiao’s bank deposits amounting to P1.1 million. “Don’t tell me he only has P1.1 million. Where is the rest of [his] money? I have no idea. It has not been garnished (seized).” She says she can’t understand why Pacquiao is making a big deal out of his tax case at this point. “Maybe he should hire better lawyers and accountants.”

    Well, the caustic tone isn’t going to help. The public is going to read arrogance in it, and it wouldn’t be entirely wrong. At the very least, questions remain. How much of Pacquiao’s money has really been frozen? It strains credulity to see how Pacquiao, who may or may not be scrupulous about his accounting, would complain about having been rendered penniless by the loss of P1.1 million. We should know soon enough if that’s true.

    More to the point, Pacquiao may not have submitted the documents but has submitted a good argument, or one the public can buy. “If I have not paid the correct taxes in America, the US authorities would have come after me and I would not have been able to travel there.” You know what they say: The only two inevitable things in America are death and taxes. Both fall on, and fell, the good and the bad, the rich and the poor. Maybe Pacquiao already has good lawyers and accountants, nobody’s running after him in America. Only here.

    But that is the least of the government’s worries.

    Can there be a worse case of bad timing? You don’t know where to begin to talk about the tsunami the BIR has just sent in the government’s direction. You knew Pacquiao was going to make a comeback fight, you knew the country was prostrate from a killer typhoon, you knew the people needed a hero to give them the hope they could climb back from their pit of despair. And you couldn’t hold your tax case in abeyance? You couldn’t set aside your freeze order for a while? You had to stick it to the one person who had just given more relief to the survivors of Yolanda than the aid-givers? You had to bring down the one person the ravaged, the desperate, and the despairing identify with heart and soul?

    That’s not just lacking a sense of the public pulse, that’s lacking a grasp of reality. When the BIR started going after Pacquiao a couple of years ago, P-Noy was at the height of his popularity. He is now at his lowest since he became president, widely pilloried if not for the fury of Yolanda at least for the fury of its effects. Imagine now Pacquiao landing in Tacloban to be swarmed upon by the survivors of Yolanda, the same people who gathered in the gymnasiums and found respite from their troubles in the way he pummeled Rios to submission, in the way he came back from his own crushing defeat last year, in the way they knew they would rise from their own abject state, and saying, “Sorry, I wanted to bring more, but waray na pera, na-checkpoint ni Kim.”

    Much of that will be (melo)drama: Pacquiao knows his theater, he has been known to wring emotional situations for whatever they are worth, and he has his political ambitions, too. But it won’t just resonate with the Taclobanons, it will resonate with Filipinos nationwide and abroad.

    In the end, what will the BIR accomplish by freezing Pacquiao’s deposits, whatever the amount? Will it succeed in showing it is resolute and will go after the high and mighty along with the poor and lowly, death and taxes being inevitable in this country, too? No. Pacquiao’s millions (of dollars) notwithstanding, the poor and lowly will continue to think of him as one of their own, who get by not by pork and perk, not by inheriting a family fortune or a family crime, but by toiling and scrapping and, yes, fighting. The poor and lowly will see only that, unlike Pacquiao, people like Lucio Tan will find only death inevitable, not taxes.

    Will the BIR succeed in putting the fear of God, or Henares, in the ungodly or tax-evading, and make them pay their taxes? No, it will succeed only in lighting up defiance in their hearts, in solidarity with their unappreciated hero, in solidarity with their oppressed idol.

    Guess who’ll get TKOed in this fight.

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