“There’s only one thing worse than a poor person pretending to be rich, and that’s a rich person pretending to be poor.”

This post was first published last Wednesday evening, 31 March 2010, just as everyone went off on Easter holidays in the Philippines. Nevertheless, it received one of the highest number of page views (18,000+) despite the general slowdown in blog activity, mostly from readers abroad. I am bringing it right up top now for Philippine-based readers who are just catching up on older posts. It is also relevant, since I am just now writing my promised post on income levels in the Philippines, which will hopefully be posted by late this evening. Many thanks.

The ads were completely annoying, but I thought it best to ignore them rather than write about them at the time. We would change television channels or radio stations whenever they aired (every other minute it seemed) during the free-for-all pre-official campaign period advertising spree last November, December and January. The Presidential campaign of Manny Villar reportedly spent roughly PHP 1 Billion to blanket the airwaves and attempt to sway the hearts of potential voters with slick ads, a pro-poor message, carefully crafted visual images, a heartbreaking “autobiographical” storyline, catchy jingles sung by children, repeated ad nauseam. The ads of all the other candidates (regular readers know I am supporting the Aquino/Roxas tandem) such as Erap, Gibo, Gordon, etc. didn’t grate at all in comparison.

At the time, what bothered me and Mrs. MM the most about the ads was their COMPLETE LACK OF LOGIC and the choice of using kids as the ones delivering the message. The lack of logic stems from this — just because someone used to be poor, does NOT necessarily mean they are more able, fit or capable of lifting everyone in the population out of poverty. Being empathetic to the conditions and plight of the poor is not the exclusive right or even assumed advantage of those who were once poor themselves. Perhaps what the economically disadvantaged voter seeks most is hope, opportunity, and ultimately an improvement in their specific economic conditions. Having sufficient amounts of nutritious food, decent shelter, a good education for their children, adequate healthcare, etc. is probably the typical set of priorities. But defensible logic was not the objective of the ads, it was all about EMOTION and convincing folks to vote for someone who was once like them, poor. Using kids as the ones singing the songs of trial, poverty, despair and hope is another emotional pitch. Kids, by nature, while candid and honest, are a bit light on the credibility side in terms of endorsing any candidate for the top political office in the nation. I must say that the ads were catchy, and masses of folks sang along, and Villar’s ratings rose over the three month period.

The problem with crafting such a simplified emotional message is that it better be predicated on some pretty solid facts, or it may backfire on you. And BACKFIRE it has. Solita Monsod’s column last Saturday, March 27, 2010 was the first to break the story, and it is definitely worth a read for anyone hoping to cast a vote in May. The same topic was covered by William Esposo of the Philippine Star on Sunday, March 28, 2010. Then Conrado de Quiros devoted not one, but two columns to the same issue. Rina Jimenez-David also discusses the matter, here. Greg Macabenta of Businessworld also wrote this column, referring to “Murphy’s Law”. Villar reacted not by refuting the documents presented by the columnists, but trying to downplay their interpretation, see an ABS-CBN post on the matter, here.

For those who can’t be bothered with reading all of the links here (but you really should), they essentially assert that Villar’s advertising claims that he and his family were dirt poor, particularly at the time his younger brother (one of the subjects of his ads) died in 1962 weren’t a good reflection of the truth. There are three main points. The Villar’s lived in an owned home on 560 square meters of land. Before passing away from from leukemia and related complications, Villar’s younger brother was apparently treated at a good hospital for many days prior to passing. Finally, after his passing, the family engaged the services of Funeraria Paz, a very high end firm, to make some of the arrangements. Essentially, the essence of the “dirt poor” ads seems rather exaggerated, if the columnists are correct. For me personally, what this all means is that the candidate appears prepared to skew the truth, if it means garnering millions of votes, and is just dead set on wanting the presidency, regardless of the cost (literally) of the campaign, or the ethics behind the campaign tactics used.

A post on “poverty” numbers up in a day or so, just so everyone has a better feel for the absolutely shocking numbers, particularly those of you domiciled abroad and less current on local conditions.

Note: The title of this post is not original. Someone else said it, but I cannot seem to find the source, so I will simply say it isn’t my creation. As for comments on this post, I am limiting them to readers who have commented on this blog before. I am taking this unusual step as I do not want to have a huge battle of “for and against” comments which usually occur from first time visitors to the blog, attracted by a single topic, and not the overall blog itself. When politics comes into play, campaigns these days seem to employ legions of folks to try and stuff comments and polls so to avoid that, I am only allowing appropriate comments from PREVIOUS commenters in. Many thanks.


103 Responses

  1. If he can lie about his family and life, what more if he becomes president. Didn’t he think that the truth will come out anyways. So why lie????

  2. Philippine politics is a strange beast. The recent fiasco over US health care came close.

  3. I showed this post to my husband, and this is his question: Why do you support Aquino/Roxas? Cynic that he is, he is wondering if this merely a choice between lesser evils, or is there something truly promising and redeeming about the duo. It’s really hard to tell, especially if for a Pinoy living abroad….

  4. It is really scary what will happen if he does win; he would need to recoup all the money he spent in the campaign and as the main premise of his campaign is a lie, we really can’t expect him to be credible in anything he says if he gets the position.

  5. chinachix and spouse, I was supporting Roxas for President for several years, but when he decided to step down, perhaps realizing he was indeed doing it for the national good, and possibly because he didn’t think he could beat Villar, then I continued to support him for VP. I think he is much more honest than most, shares a similar professional background and training as my own, and I do truly believe in him and his family. I am less enthusiastic about Noynoy, and yes, it is partially my choice of two less than ideal Presidential candidates. But ultimately, I think Noynoy is honest and less corruptible, and while possibly not the sharpest tool in the shed, I would rather have the honesty and integrity at the base of it all. Having said that, I have recently heard him speak in public and apparently without a prepared speech, and he was far better than I had expected. He is much sharper than his lumbering image suggests, and after all smarts is not the sole pre-requisite for great leadership. When Mrs. MM returned after college, she worked with Noy’s mother in Malacanang, sitting in an office just meters away from President Aquino. In her opinion, the Aquino family (mother and kids) are admirable, period. As for the Pres/VP pair/duo, I like that they are actually running as a team, for one party, and they SHOULD work much better together than any of the other tandems that are often cobbled together and not genuine partnerships. Also, should the Aquino/Roxas tandem win, and govern reasonably well for the next 6 years, then I would be there to support Roxas for President in 2016. I think the ONLY real hope the Philippines has of emerging from the downward spiral it has been in is in proper, logical, rational, honest, principled leadership of at least 12 years in a row… and Aquino/Roxas offers that possibility more than any other team up right now. As for the other candidates, here is my PERSONAL opinion. Erap, sorry, no. I campaigned to get him OUT of office. Gibo, a smart guy, but based on the polls, has little chance of winning and I will not “waste” a vote on this election, at the risk of benefitting a less appealing candidate winning… Gordon, Madrigal, Villanueva, etc. I don’t know enough to even comment. But this is only my PERSONAL OPINION and I think readers need to do their own analysis before they decide whom to vote for. :)

  6. why is it when come election time, many politicians wanted to be poor or say they came from the poor? because majority of the population are poor and they think this will earn them the votes but after winning the post, I am not sure if they will do something to lessen the poor people because remember this is their voting public ergo poverty will not be wipe out!!!!!

  7. My mother is not voting because she claims that pare-parehas lang sila – meaning that it does not matter who wins the presidency as nothing good will come out of it whoever wins. I did not register myself as I had issues with the Embassy during registration time. Maraming red tape. That Php1Billion could have been used to save a lot of children needing life-saving operations at charity hospitals all over the country. Sayang naman.

  8. Mimi, while I respect people’s right to decide whether to cast a vote or not, I personally believe that we fought so hard to REGAIN the right to vote and elect our leaders, and therefore NOT voting is a cop-out. Not voting won’t absolve one of the responsibility of choosing… I would rather be frustrated by the process and outcome, but active in it, than be indifferent. Actually, voter turnout in the Philippines is generally spectacular, at roughly 75-80%, far higher than the U.S. which comes in at roughly 55% of registered voters in the last Presidential election.

  9. i think all of the candidates tug on the emotions to get votes. villar (obviously), aquino with his rapping and baby james and vids/pics of his mom and dad in the background in another commercial, loren with vids of her giving water to a fainting old woman, gordon and gibo also. there’s mar with his commercial with coffee farmers and sardines producers…i mean, you don’t see them appealing to the intellect in any of their commercials. it’s all just “stop corruption, end poverty, help the oppressed.” it’s all about LSS, name retention and audience appeal. if any of these commercials were intellectual, you’ll see a point by point explanation of their platforms. i feel it’s a little bit unfair to point the guns at Villar alone, even if HE DID spend that much on ads.

    there will always be that great divide when it comes to elections. like you said, you will vote for someone who has the same background as you, resonates to you (understandably so) and everyone else will vote for the candidate who resonates to them. unfortunately, there are far more people under the poverty line who will buy villar’s scheme than those who are like you and should we say, upper-middle class to upper class, who will vote for aquino. but that’s just looking at numbers. of course there are people who will vote for aquino even if they are in villar’s target demography and vice versa. bottomline, it’s voter education that will change the way elections are made, not the candidates and their campaign ads. i’ll hazard a guess that the families whose kids you help feed through your feeding program don’t even get to read a decent newspaper, or really crunch in the news every evening or go online. and you can imagine how many families are just like them.

    Anyshoes, a professor of mine was pretty apt when he said “If Noynoy isn’t the wimp that he is, there wouldn’t even be an issue about Villar spending so much because it’s just going to be SO obvious that Noynoy will win anyway.” And I tend to agree. If Aquino will win, it won’t be a close vote, i think.

  10. For the 2010 Philippine Presidential elections, there are roughly 50.3 million registered voters. If you do the math, and some 80% actually cast votes, then roughly 40 million votes will be cast. To be safe, one would say that you need 20.01 million votes to win the Presidency, but the reality is that several candidates will split the votes up, so I think that someone who garners some 38-40% of the votes cast, or roughly 15-16 million votes will have enough votes to win the Presidency, unless some candidates pull out before election day. If there is a last minute surge and landslide and voters suddenly rush to one candidate, I think the MAXIMUM votes a winning candidate will get is say 22 million, or 55% of the total votes cast… How’s that for a “back of the napkin” calculation.

  11. I think there is much more to Noynoy Aquino than meets the eye. Both positive and negative perhaps. I am supporting the Aquino/Roxas tandem as well for the exact same reasons as Marketman . At the end of the day, honesty and integrity count for way more and are of a higher prize in my book than intellectual capacity- and definitely weigh in much more than business savvy.

  12. i’ll leave the math to you MM. but cheers to the ~55% who will vote for the winner, that’s a good number. but the last presidential elections (i know, it was lame. it was laughable. but for the sake of using the latest data) GMA got only ~40% of the votes. FPJ got ~37%. And i think that’s around the same as to what we’re gonna look at this elections. that’s what i mean by close.

  13. Here’s more trivia as I surf the net on the eve of the first Holy Week holiday that we have deicded to spend at home, in the relative calm and quiet Manila…

    GMA won the 2004 election with just roughly 12.9 million votes or 39% of those cast, give or take the 1 million Garci votes, if you “buy” that which I do. :) FPJ garnered 11.7 million votes in the same election.

    Surprising, to me, is the number of votes senatorial candidates got in the two most recent senatorial elections.

    Mar Roxas managed 19 million in 2004, already more than enough to win for the VP, should the same voters support him again. But close on his heels as a senator, Loren Legarda got 18.5 million or so. Both got FAR MORE votes than the Presidential candidates, but that’s because you have to pick 12 senators at a time, rather than from a smaller range of Presidential candidates. But that’s why politicians run for senate, to get their names OUT there in preparation for other campaigns.

    In 2007, Villar garnered 15.3 million votes while Aquiino got 14.3 million votes. But for me, the eye-opener is that Trillanes, who attempted a coup, won as a Senator, campaigning from jail, with 11.7 million votes, almost as many votes as GMA got to WIN as President. Bizarre indeed… More here for the source of these figures…

  14. emsy, I agree with a lot of your comment. However, I do think that Aquino currently leads in all socioeconomic classes of voters, strong in ABC, ahead in D, and slightly ahead in E, if the latest SWS polls are reliable. Villar is much more heavily reliant on the E segment. So I think the “thinking” and the “emotional” vote are intertwining there. But it is early goings with another 5-6 weeks of campaigning, so I think there is still more to come to help people decide who they will vote for.

  15. is the information dug up and written about by those journalists available in other forms like radio and tv that targets the same audience villar’s ad targets? i hope so. otherwise the people who are being deceived are not getting the truth.

  16. hay, tama ka MM. Every time my husband sees the ad of Villar he cringes. He always say that Villar is businessman first then public servant second. It shows talaga that Villar is atat to be President. C5 scandal nga hindi nya mapaliwanag ng mabuti when he’s just a senator what more if he’s president na. pretty scary if he wins talaga.

  17. My father and I are at odds when it comes to the coming election. He is pro-Villar, mainly because he has ties with the Villar in-laws. And so I often tell my father to spite him haha, that if Villar was to be honest he should say that he married into money and not that sipag at tyaga nonsense!

    If I were in Pinas in May I would vote for Noynoy and Roxas too with exactly the same reason. I’d go for principle and uncorruptibility against brilliance or track records. Job skills can always be learned, and the presidency is a job, no matter how grand it seems but principles are ingrained, it’s something you either have or not. And Villar with all his misleading ads shows clearly that he’s not one for principled leadership.

  18. i’m definitely not voting for villar because of the land grabbing case against him in cebu, another land case in iloilo and the C-5 scandal. i am still hesitant on the ninoy/villar tandem because of noynoy’s less than stellar record after all those years in government.

    in relation to the “rich person pretending to be poor” saying above i remember the time i attended the press launch of imelda marcos’ new accessory line. imelda and aimee marcos kept harping about how they were dyed in the wool ilocanos who recycled food, were “kuripot” and never threw anything away. i wanted to roll my eyes and barf.

  19. Even though it is an appalling relief to be in the 20-25 percent of non-voters, having lost faith in the voting system for one reason or another, we remain loving the Philippines and most things Pinoy, just exercising the right not to vote. My family is not passionate about politics as most Pinoys.

  20. The most current expose is the the school where Villar attended his elementary/grade school as it happened to be a private school …..the Holy Child Catholic School.

    Here’s a very interesting article titled, ” Murphy’s law and Manny Villar”, published by Businessworld:

    Looks like Villar’s billions of advertising expenses are backfiring! I do like the sound of his moniker, hahahaha: Money Villarroyo!

  21. Well said, MM. As Mr. de Quiros said, Villar is not mahirap, but mahirap paniwalaan. He skews the truth, he will screw all of us IF he wins. Probably worse than FM and GMA combined.

  22. I wonder if the kids USED in the Villar ads were properly rewarded (financially) for their professional work? I hope they got a significant percentage of what the ad agency charged and not just “snack money” or worst the same Php20.00 that Villar was distributing to some kids during one of his campaign sortie.

    I was at the Carbon Market (public market in Cebu) this afternoon, buying some of my ingredients and it was interesting to listen to a couple of “common tao” (I would say they belong to the Class C-D-E market) talking local politics and who they were going to vote for President and Vice-President….and I was happy to learn they were all for Noynoy and Mar tandem!!! I just smiled and gave them the thumbs up!!

    Just like MM, my family and I were also for Mar for President, before he step aside for Noynoy. I also believe that they are the only tandem thats working as a team. I also hope voters will choose wisely who they will vote for senator.

  23. i have already decided whom i’ll vote for Pres and VP, but having trouble choosing my 12 senators out of the 61 in the list of candidates not to mention choosing a party list out of 187 , help ! :) , i’m an absentee voter, already got my ballot , just need to fill it out and mail it, i’ve decided to be involved in this election, i don’t want to be indifferent anymore, i realised that i don’t have the right to moan and complain if i don’t even engage in my duty, i consider it now a duty and not just a right, to vote.

  24. ugh…I unfortunately got a barrage of those MV commercials back in January…

    If I was back home, would be rooting for Gordon-Bayani…supposed to be Aquino-Roxas kaso I believe more in past performance…and what Gordon and Bayani did for their respective towns and eventually cities is beyond amazing. I for one can speak for the rise of Marikina from this dirty crime ridden town to a spic and span city, since I grew up in Lower Antipolo. And then there’s the slight dent he made in making Metro Manila a better place, though some would contest that, I for one am truly thankful that maski papaano naibsan ang traffic sa mga major roads, but the problem really is discipline of the general populace.

    At first I thought Villar was honorable and all that jazz…what with all this program of helping troubled OFWs get home…boy was I wrong! A roommate of mine used to work for his company, and she said Villar had been aspiring to become President of the Republic for a very long time..and that those land-grabbing complaints/lawsuits those are true…he would use goons to scare off farmers to sell their lands for next to nothing! And then there’s also the press release of Sen Enrile (it’s on the Senate website) of the alleged bribing of most candidates to back down from the race.

    My only gripe in all this is, I was unable to register for absentee voting because the day I found out that registrations were being held, was the last day! argh!

    to end…to quote Pugad Baboy’s Polgas “Kung si Villar ang tunay na mahirap, eh ano tayo?”

    Artisan Chocolatier…re the kids used in the commercial, they are all from the BASECO compound in Tondo, a feature story was done by GMA-7 in one of their news and public affairs show, they were paid P2000 and given some groceries.

  25. im up for noy & mar too – honest, principled & they believe in what they’re fighting for … am really hoping our kababayans dont get lulled by all these campaign tactics… sana wiser na mga tao satin ngayon, teodoro’s under GMAs wings and villar uses money to win (w/c i think he’ll easily gain back if he gets lucky to be seated)… and the rest, pangpagulo lang sa election …

  26. Just curious to know how the ‘expose’ is being played out in the TV media (i.e., investigative journalism) or is the ‘expose’ being covered mostly in the traditional print media? ‘Then again, the TV stations rake in the dough from all those political ads/propaganda … so they may not be willing to bite the hand that feeds them.

  27. Someone posted this on Professional Heckler’s blog:

    “It is stated on the Bible that: Man is Evil and Liar”


    Wow, that was something!

  28. Thel—isn’t that something!!!??? I saw that, too, and got a big laugh…if I were the opposing parties, I’d grab that cheese and make some bumper sticker-freebies…

  29. I think if my kapwa Filipinos can vote they should vote. My Mom is a US citizen now but if she could only vote, she keeps saying, she would vote for Aquino/Roxas. But since she can’t, she’s campaigning among my family there to vote for the people she believes can give us a better government. So vote and vote wisely.

  30. my thoughts, exactly, MM. thank you for saying it all. was channel surfing last night and was disgusted to see villar’s ads on at the same time in the two biggest local networks, and they were on every few minutes or so…it was so disgusting i did not even bother to count.

    major intention on my prayer list this lenten week is for the elections. woke up today to the news that smartmatic (the company that supplied the vote-counting machines) suppsedly delivered the wrong type of ink, which the counting machines can’t read.

  31. I’m registered to vote, but am having trouble on how I’m going to find unbiased, non-partisan information for each candidate to truly make informed choices. I’m wary enough of newspaper columns and TV debates due to the possible bias inherent in media and/or its owners. It seems like it can’t be a purely objective choice, as much as I’d want it to be. And what more for all the people running for positions other than president/vice-president?

  32. i am a las piñas resident and i am not voting for this fraud!

    to get a real idea on how manny villar will run both our country and his corporations when he becomes president, here are some of my tips:

    tour villar’s ‘las piñas city’ on anyday at any hour and then visit any of villar’s real estate developments.

    see what looks better.

    decide where he directed his money.

    find out which place has water from tap, his city or his villages? stop and ask the residents so you really know.

    compare your vehicles’ average speed for both trips (c5-ext has made villar’s properties highly accessible while the alabang-zapote road is still the traffic nightmare that it is)

    also, please take note of the campaign materials lining the las piñas roads. it is all villar. in case you are wondering why the other presidentiables do not bother to post campaign materials in las piñas, well they all do. its just that manny villar deploys trucks every evening to take down all non-villar collaterals.

  33. “Gibo, a smart guy, but based on the polls, has little chance of winning and I will not “waste” a vote on this election, at the risk of benefitting a less appealing candidate winning…”…

    I beg to disagree with you, Marketman. Such a twisted logic on why we should vote for Noy. Just so Villar will not win? That’s pathetic reasoning for me. You have to convince me more.

    I’m getting tired of all this talk from Noy’s camp of “wasting a vote”. We will go for Gibo because he is really the BEST candidate. If I wanted to waste my vote, then I would rather not vote at all . I still believe no vote is wasted if you vote for the candidate you truly believe in. And in all fairness, I know even you agree that Gibo is more fit for the presidency than someone who always calls out his parents and sister’s name.

  34. snickerdoodles, I have allowed your comment in, even though I said I would limit this to previous commenters, as I think it raises a very valid point which I would like to address.

    In a perfect world, you would vote for the person you most strongly believe in, period. Irrespective of whether he or she has a snowball’s chance in Hades or not. It is an extremely idealistic view to take, and I took that road for many, many years. In an even stricter sense of decorum, when I ran for student council in High School, and became President of the class, I am pretty certain I did not vote for myself, as my mother insisted that as a candidate, you should be elected on the votes of others who believe in your ability to serve. Had I lost by just one vote, I’m not sure I would have been so sanguine about that position then, or now.

    Today, I believe in being slightly more practical, precisely because I do not think we are in a perfect world, and worse, I do not think there are ANY totally ideal Presidential candidates in the field running right now. As I have stated on this blog before, ideally, I personally would rank candidates in this short hand manner from best to worst (Character – honesty, integrity, heart, etc.) / (Capability – Track Record, Intelligence, Capability to Muster change, etc.):

    1. Honest & Capable
    2. Honest & Incapable
    3. Dishonest & Capable
    4. Dishonest & Incapable

    In my personal opinion, and only that, an opinion, most of the candidates probably fall into the 1.5 – 3.5 range, though some would argue we definitely sink low to a solid 4.0 for a candidate or two. But I will not rate each one, as that is too contentious and frankly, I lack data to do that properly.

    Now as for the “wasted vote” logic, which I do not think is twisted at all. The polls, as controversial as they always are, do reflect the pulse of the voters to a certain degree, and previous data confirms that. Even my own poll here taken weeks ago answered by roughly 1,000 readers, most probably in the A&B socio-economic classes, was a good reflection of the results of the SWS poll in the A segment of the population. And I didn’t spend a single centavo to obtain that “feel” from a small segment of the voting population. So, the thinking goes like this… the polls have identified at least 3 candidates with “substantial” chances of winning, barring massive cheating or vote interference, and they are: Aquino, Villar and Estrada. Everyone else at this point does not appear to be within STRIKING DISTANCE AT ALL. Gibo, in response to your specific question, wallows at 5-7% of the votes, and that has been consistently confirmed in SEVERAL polls in the past 4 months. On my own poll, he came out a solid 2nd choice, but that is just for the A market, and his appeal appears to be less enthusiastic in other segments of the voting population. So the reality is probably more true than not that a vote cast his way (assuming he remains in the poll doldrums), does have a VERY REAL chance of taking a vote away from another similarly acceptable candidate in a tighter race with two other candidates I am not thrilled to have as the President of the Republic.

    The other part of the puzzle is that I personally do not think Gibo is far and away a MUCH better (if better at all) candidate than NoyNoy, which would help me to reconsider the “wasted vote” logic. Gibo comes off as being very smart and capable in several areas, but his record isn’t to my knowledge, stellar either in terms of doing things that indicate he is top choice for turning the country around if he were President. Personally, I question his running under the administration party which has been hounded with so much unanswered scandal, and is now in disarray if newspapers are to be believed. Then there is his choice of running mate, Edu Manzano, ?!? There are private questions regarding the strict application of criminal law with respect to incidents that are at best, kept hush hush. etc. Don’t get me wrong, all of the candidates have pluses and minuses and skeletons in their closets, I just don’t personally buy that Gibo, when compared to Noynoy, is a much clearer and more capable choice, and when considered on the winnability front, the argument becomes even clearer for me.

    As I said earlier, I believe not voting at all is a cop-out. And I would rather that one voted for someone who was going to lose than NOT vote at all. We will HAVE to elect a President, and it’s better to be part of the process than not. But we cannot ignore that voting for a candidate with no chance of winning may take away from the chances of other candidates who may also be able to do good for the country.

    Mrs. MM will probably kill me for typing this, but it seems Gibo is a not so distant relative… and that isn’t enough for us to cast two votes in his favor. Bringing this back to food, Gibo was smart/nice enough to personally buy several kilos of Zubuchon (lechon) from the domestic airport lounge a few weeks ago to take back to Manila. At least he has good taste… :) Noynoy (Mar was late to that affair) has tasted the same lechon as well at a fundraiser in Cebu. And egads, even Loren Legarda was seen buying some Zubuchon and giving it out to airport security staff when she was on a visit to Cebu a few weeks ago. :)

  35. Remember what Tevye said? Nothing to be ashamed of of being poor but nothing to be proud of either.

  36. Points very well taken, MM! And since this is YOUR blog, then I guess you have the last say. Will respect them. Thank you for still posting my comment despite the big difference in views and opinion. I appreciate your transparency. I would have wanted to reply to your answers point by point, but naaah, this thread will never see the end of it. Not that I am conceding but it’s Holy Week anyway, so peace…. But just one last dig please? SURVEYS??!!! You actually believe in them? (face in disbelief! :) Again, its your blog, PEACE.

    Oh and the lechons! See, what did I say about Gibo now? The guy’s got a good chip on his shoulders. He bought several kilos of your Zubuchon so you will have to agree with me that he does make the right decisions, huh? :) Sulong G1bo!

    Happy Easter, MM! And to Mrs MM, please don’t kill your husband. Hehe :)

  37. snickerdoodles, I almost always welcome intelligent discussions. :)

    As for the opinion polls, one only has to go back to the SWS polls prior to the last elections to see that they generally got the numbers right, give or take a few points, so I don’t discount all polls.

    Have a good Easter, we will be having lamb, not lechon. :)

  38. This whole using kids issue has my heckles up. Whether you like Obama or not, Villar’s tactics are fairly similar to some of the tactics used by Obama’s team, and it worked! Including being poor, Obama was educated by his grandmother in an exclusive prep school in Hawaii. For the most part, here in the US, the educators and their parents were the ones to coerce their children to sing praises to Obama (some even literally- google Bernice Young Elementary School etc…)- there was a campaign ad on TV that had children singing Obama’s theme- Hope & Change. The thing is, it’s just so bloody wrong when politicians coerce kids into doing things for the sake of getting elected. I wonder if Villar’s team will also use the zeal and passion of college age kids to get him elected, something that also got Obama elected. That being said, just like in the US, most everyone there WANTS to enact change, the problem is who to vote for.
    As a child whenever we visited Olongapo (where Gordon was mayor), it was clean, the police were mostly uncorruptible, and people were much more organized and law abiding-including when driving. That being said, I don’t know how that will translate into a presidency- and as a side note it’s shades of nepotism with both Noynoy’s (reminds me of the Bush’s) and Gordon’s (his father and mother was Mayor of Olongapo and so was his wife- isn’t James Gordon Jr also related to him?) campaigns. What is it with politicians and nepotism anyhow?

  39. “Without a rich heart, wealth is an ugly beggar” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

  40. I’m for Aquino and Roxas because I sincerely believe that they would not do anything to destroy the good names they carry. Would Noynoy throw away all the sacrifices his father and his mother did for the Filipino people? Would Mar stain the good names of his lolo and his father? The trust I have in these two to honor their forebears’ legacy is the topmost reason for my voting for them!

  41. Though I respect and acknowledge some people taking issue over not letting one’s vote go to waste, I would like to conversely raise the value of going back to basics when we choose a “winnable candidate”.

    We all know that this battle really is between, as surveys show, the top 2 candidates. In this light and at this point in time, I would rather “waste” (if that’s what people prefer to call it) my vote on someone with firm moral standards and one who is less likely to steal.

    I’ll be damned if I’d allow someone so shockingly/blatantly/unabashedly “INVESTED” in this race later “HARVEST” gains from government coffers (squeezed from honest and hardworking taxpayers) later on. If some people believe that “INVESTOR” won’t “CASH IN” after he wins, then they are in for a very rude awakening.

  42. These are indeed very valuable information to consider for the May elections…and thank you MM for the links, it just confirmed my doubts about Villar’s character and true intent. I hope these information reach as many voters as it can.

  43. I’ll join you on the lamb part, as I love me some lamb anytime hehehe.

    I salute people who do things to change my motherland for the better no matter how hopeless the Philippines may seem to be. I think MM is doing his part thru this blog by educating our people by showing others how to live a better life, because it could, because we could.
    I just hope I get to see the tipping point when our home country get to be on top again. Sometimes something so bad or ugly has to happen for the good things to come. The Arroyos happened and the Arroyos happened, so I’m just waiting for the good things to happen again because the bad and the ugly has been happening for far too long.
    Only if we could put all the talents these politicians have and put their leadership to good use.
    First step, educate our youth,then KILL – Juan Tamad,yes I say kill Juan Tamad,as we are not Juans! We are Malakas, Maganda, Makisig, Masigasig!
    Mabuhay po ang Pilipinas!!!

  44. MM said “However, I do think that Aquino currently leads in all socioeconomic classes of voters, strong in ABC, ahead in D, and slightly ahead in E, if the latest SWS polls are reliable.”

    Could someone please explain the “A, B, C, D, and E’s” of Philippine economic class? I can guess the ABC but who are the D and E’s?

  45. Hoz, a post on income levels up in the next day or so for readers who might be interested… Income levels don’t exactly translate into ABCDE, but they are similar. ABCDE include asset holdings as well, as opposed to just income. A’s and some B’s tend to have assets such as homes, cars, provincial land, businesses, etc. while E’s are typically living hand to mouth… I think you may be SHOCKED by the income levels of a majority of the Philippine population.

  46. I appreciate the intelligent conversation being carried on around in this blog. I feel most Filipino elections revolve around ‘personalities’ I have to endorse Noynoy and Mar, better honest and decent than faux maca-pobre. It is wistful prayer – but I pray for true ‘metanoia’- a true conversion of heart to God ( we pride ourselves in being such a Christian country and all that it implies ).

  47. Now, if MM is a one of the candidates, I’ll definitely apply for dual citizenship and vote for Him! He has two of the most important characteristics important to me: Integrity and Capability. So, MM, maybe not for this coming election, but for the next one? And while I am wishing, how about bringing with you people of like thinking, character and capability? Hooray!

  48. MM, it’s really annoying to be seeing political advertisements using poor kids as weapons. Albeit billions used in this advertisement, I hope voters will be wise enough to feel the sincerity of each candidate. Think about this: incapable candidates must have plans on how to gain back their capital once in the position. Paano na ang Pilipinas? :-(

  49. I think Mar did the smart thing by vying for a VP seat. If Aquino is the least corruptible/corrupt, then he can bring change to the Philippines. Roxas, fresh from a successful run by Aquino, can then run for the big seat when Aquino is constitutionally not able to anymore. That should bring Philippines about 24 years of progress. That’s a whole generation growing up in a prosperous Philippines.

  50. Hello Marketman,

    Why so hellbent about Villar. When it will only take two words to describe Noynoy Aguino aka: HACIENDA LUISITA. Noynoy Aquino is just the same DOG with a different color. Give it up. Now that doesn’t means I would not vote Mar Roxas.


  51. Thank you for this update MM. Living away from the Philippines can make us insulated sometimes as we do not have access to local TV programs. You do have a strong point and I totally agree with you. I pray that the Philippines will have peaceful elections and that the deserving leaders get voted by the people.

  52. I pray for clean honest elections and hope that no votes are stolen from deserving candidates. I am contributing to support observers to insure clean and honest elections.

    I also pray that people do not succumb to vote buying, always a problem in a struggling democracy in a country where poverty is widespread. But…… as it has been said in the past, go get the money and vote for the right candidate. So much for integrity.

  53. its very difficult to choose. We all thought GMA would be much better than erap but do date their family must be close already to the dictator in amassing wealth. Personally have friends who worked for sbma and they tell me how corrupt gordon was.

    I have to agree with you MM, noy is the lesser evil.

  54. jdawgg, I agree that there are issues from Hacienda Luisita. However, the bulk of the issues stem from times back to the grandparents and parents/uncles of Noynoy. So while I agree the family should eventually find complete resolution to the issues primarily becuase they are so visible and in the public eye, I hardly think you can put theresponsiblity/blame on ONE of the descendants who owns such a small percentage of the pie, less than 1%, he claims.

    When my own parents passed away several years ago, on behalf of all of my siblings, I was tasked with cleaning up issues surrounding property and other joint holdings, and I can tell you there’s no way I could be faulted by anyone for any actions my ancestors took on their own either with intent, out of laziness, or just plain inaction. The holdings weren’t anywhere near as substantial or controversial as a Hacienda, but me and my siblings legally owned 100% of the property by then and we all voted as one, so it took only 5-6 years and some good legal advice to clear up far less complex issues. If I only owned 1% and there were dozens of other shareholders, some from an elder generation of family members even, you can forget playing a primary role in the resolution of any issues.

    I agree the Aquino family as a whole needs to address the issues, but saying that Noynoy must take the brunt of the responsibility for the acts of his ancestors both living and dead is simply wrong. Anyone with a big family with lots of wonderful and colorful characters would understand this…

  55. Thank you, MM for many insightful comments regarding your political choices. i have been reading up quite diligently on our present candidates and will also ask friends I consider in highly about their own political choices. Yet, i know in the end, I will have to come to my own decision and cast my vote.

    My only criticism in on the advertising media and all those publicists who will do anything just for money—no ethics at all! Advertising has given me a bad after-taste for many, many years! My husband and i don’t watch commercial tv and just rely on the internet…and we’re sooo happy about it.

  56. i once read a blog that says that the reason why Manny uses kids in his campaign ads is because he is a (xxxxxxx – sorry, terrey, I removed that word, I just think it’s unsubstantiated/unfairly incendiary and I would rather leave that for the other blogs, thanks). this is maybe far from the truth. back in Dec at home in Pinas, i was so sick and tired of all his ads on tv. it was everywhere and you’d wonder how in the world could he afford to pay all those ads. it was too ironic, here he is talking about being pro-poor, but the onslaught of ads on tv was telling us something which is not about being poor.

    i am for Noy-Mar too and it is not because they are the lesser evils. i believe that they are less incorruptible too. if the Pres is less corrupt, it would mean that the people way down in the bureaucracy would not be too “inspired” to cheat. see what’s happening now, we have seen too much corruption at the very top, so, the mindset is, if the top guns are able to do it and can get away with it, so can the minions down the line.

  57. i don’t understand how the people under the nacionalista party can sleep at night having sold their souls to the devil… loren legarda, liza masa, satur ocampo, gilbert remulla, cayetano siblings, adel tamano etc… makes me want to puke

    villar is an obvious crook whose only plaform is being “poor” and being able to get out of “poverty” HIMSELF (sarili lang nya ang napa-ahon nya sa “kahirapan”, through what means, we don’t actually know), he hasn’t shown or said anything on HOW to alleviate poverty of the MASSES. i have heard noynoy, gibo, even nick perlas give specific things they WILL do to address poverty. total opposite with villar, he just gives sweeping generic statements for everything and anything.

    i hope that the electorate will be wise enough to see through villar’s lies. ginagawa na tayong tanga ni villar!

    i’m for noynoy-mar too. first and foremost because they have a name to take care of. i don’t think noy or mar will do anything to harm their family’s name. not one candidate is perfect, but they fit most of my criteria for my vote.

    it’s already april, and yet i don’t see the many artistas that have pledged support for noy joining their campaign sorties. yes, some connote that artistas are just being paid to campaign, but with noy and mar, having kris and korina, it’s believable that artistas are offering their services for free to campaign for them. im not saying that the liberal should go to the extent of having “kembot girls” (like that of villar’s) around, but i think it’s also good to have some credible artistas on the campaign trail to draw people in to listen to noy and mar’s platform. villar’s camp is exploiting this, bringing willie revillame etc to draw the crowd then poking at the lower classes’ emotional side to deliver false empathy votes for him.

    the lower classes will vote for villar because of their immediate need to have food on their table which is what villar is offering through dole outs.(kapit sa patalim) the hungry doesn’t look at the long term effects of a villar presidency. case in point: GMA. when we were trying to oust erap, people thought that gma is an able replacement, but lo and behold, we are in a bigger sh*thole right now.

    gibo, is sayang i think. he has all the credentials to become a good president, but i question his integrity. he is willing to look beyond gma’s glaring misdoings just to get support of the lakas machinery. he may project himself to be a principled man, but that speaks for itself. no amount of impressive credentials or intelligent platform can compromise for that

    we have every evidence against gma, but she’s still in malacanang wiping the gov’t coffers clean (and has the prospect of becoming the next PM, God forbid). sad, but after all the edsa 1, 2 and 3, people have grown tired and apathetic. it is important that in the coming elections, we pitch in to guard our votes in our own simple ways… our country can’t have another crook for a president.

  58. I completely agree with you on these points, pro Noy/Mar: “less corruptible”, “honesty and integrity at the base of it all”.

    As for Villar wanting to help the poor, if he only allocated at least 25% of his total ad spend (TVC spots in primetime shows would now cost an outrageous 6 figures, almost half a million on some top-rating shows!) and simply donated them, then that could have really helped A LOT of poor people!

  59. Personality oriented politics vs cause oriented politics. Wake up ‘Pinas. We need a lot of educating to do.

  60. If Villar becomes the President…I wonder what will happen to hectares of land without any registered land title at all?
    Would you also believe that most people of Payatas still want Erap for President? A niece surveyed the area as part of her thesis preparation, and she was suprised to got such data. And in the current surveys he does rank 3rd, and suprisingly gaining more as the election approaches! I agree that most “emotionally” motivated votes come from the lower class. They are after a candidate who is “maka-masa”.
    I just hope and pray that people will be enlighten as to who they should really vote for.

  61. Thanks Marketman for the enlightenment. As a person from the other side of the big lake called Pacific Ocean, I still want someone to be installed as a President of the Phillippines from a non-polical dynasty like the Aquino’s. I am chosing the lesser of two evils.


  62. jdawgg, I agree with you that there are too many “dynasties” in this country. Too many. But stay tuned for the poverty post as I think it will be an eye-opener for many…

  63. Manny Villar makes me sick in the gut. He scares the living ish out of me knowing that he spent crazy amount of money for his campaign. Who the hell would spend a billion pesos or even more and won’t make profit out of it. Manny Villar is a great business man and he knows how to make his money work for him. I will bet my car and my own family jewels since that the only thing I can call mine that in case he wins this election, he’ll be earning back what he spent. He may not blatantly take money from the government but it will be a lot more easier for him and his business to prosper in our country. Roads will be built in favor of his real estate business (though I must admit, the daang hari road from Alabang to Cavite is such an ease for me whenever I got to Cavite).

    In any case, I would not be voting for him nor Noynoy Aquino (I’m sorry to inform you that MM, I know you respect other people’s point of view). I am not voting for a guy who will spend so much money nor I will vote for somebody who seems to have been thrown out in the open to run for presidency and take advantage of what his folks have done for our country.

    I will be voting for Dick Gordon, for all I know, he can, even a bit, make a change for our dying country. He may not win but I will stand by decision to vote for him. Who knows…

  64. after seeing that ad wherein he was mentioning his dead brother dying because they were poor, i was so appalled and really the term is “nahabag”. how can someone go so low so as to disrespect the memory of someone you love in the name of campaigning? for me it was like digging up the remains of your loved ones and doing sacrilegious things to it. there is no excuse for those actions as far as i am concerned.

  65. Likewise, I’m a Roxas fan and will support the Aquino/Roxas tandem all the way. I also just read the news that the firstgen Arroyo is supporting Villar, of course we all have a haunch about this but the news in my opinion confirms what I was guessing all the while that the Arroyos are supporting Villar. Being an ofw from the Middle East, I classify myself towards the poor bracket of society…. and yes a lot of my friends have changed allegiance from Villar to Noynoy/Roxas.

  66. i will vote for Gordon and fernando. i know they have less chances than the other candidates but i ldo think they have what the others lack political will to do the country good whether or not the other politicos like it. villar? i agree with mm on this noy and mar? too many issues for me at least. i do understand noy’s dilemma with the hacienda. am in the middle of one too right now and its not a pretty sight specially if the previous handlers botched up the job by either laziness, inaction or wrong decisions. also there are other people in the mix as it is a family matter, so yeah its not easy to just decide on a family matter as other people have to have their say as well.

  67. Being overseas for quite a while gives us the luxury of looking at Philippine politics from another angle but it doesn’t make it any easier…we became dual citizens just last year so that means we can cast our 2 cents in.Looking at the candidates(for us anyway) we tend to lean more towards Gibo.He talks with some intellegence and common sense and he does not beat around the bush when a question is presented to him.

    But what gets me are the candidates promising jobs and help for the poor when they get elected….what’s wrong with having done it before when they were not running for the presidency?Where they not in the Senate?Were they not influential before to be able to DO SOMETHING?Just asking.

  68. Roxas is our bet for the vice presidency…just had to add that :D He is the most “with it” candidate for the position…Wished he was a presidential candidate though.

  69. From the Manila Cathedral School “History” page:

    The Manila Cathedral School was opened for the poor boys of Tondo, too. The tuition was minimal. When the school opened in June 1949, some 400 students were enrolled. The boys from the district of Tondo, studied in Manila Cathedral School while their sisters went to Tondo Parochial School now known as Holy Child Catholic School. Realizing the inconvenience of this arrangement for the parents, Manila Cathedral School opened its doors to girls in 1950.

    (Emphasis mine.)

    From a Wikipedia entry under “History” heading of Holy Child Catholic School:

    Official classes began on July 2, 1945, The school site was transferred beside the Sto. Niño Church, where the Tondo Orphanage used to stand. Government Recognition for the complete course was granted on February 22, 1951. The school became a corporation on October 23, 1954 under the name “Holy Child Catholic School.” In 1955, HCCS was granted government recognition for the complete secondary and kindergarten courses. By then she was able to graduate her first batch of high school students.

    (Emphasis mine.)

    From a press release – Transcript of Interview With Sen. Manny Villar (“Usapang de Kampanilya”, DZMM):

    Villar: Ayan na naman. Alam mo na-master na nila yung technique ng pagbabaligtad ng information kamukha ng ginawa nila diyan sa C5,binalibaligtad nila. Alam mo nag-aaral ako sa Isabelo delos Reyes noong araw- grade 1. Ngayon naglakwatsa ako dahil tumutulong ako sa nanay ko. Tamad na ako mag-aral; eh nag-drop out ako, inaamin ko naman iyun.

    Susunod na school year, dun sa kabila, ang tondo parochial school. Kasi ang mga pari doon nagtayo ng iskwelahan para sa mahihirap. Private yun para sa mahihirap. Nun mga panahon na iyon, mas mataas pa ang standard ng public school kaysa sa private. Ngayon pinalitan na ang pangalan ginawang Holy Child catholic school. Nung time naming, pangit pa yan; at saka hindi nga lang maganda ang standard tiulad ng isabelo delos reyes. Very convenient, kasi tumawid lang ang nanay ko sa kabila. Yun lang ang walking distance mula sa bahay namin na iskwelahan.

    (Emphasis mine.)

    While it is true that the Tondo Parochial School, a coed institution, accepts poor girls of Tondo, it is not clear if Tondo Parochial School only accepts poor boys. I guess we can just rely on Manny Villar’s word.

    But, how come he is still mouthing that he was transferred the next school year (from Grade 1 at Isabelo de los Reyes Elementary School) to Tondo Parochial School when the latter was already named Holy Child Catholic School in 1954? Don’t tell me he entered that school from the school’s origins and yet graduated only in 1962?

    There’s a different ring to the name “Tondo Parochial School,” a far cry to “Holy Child Catholic School” obviously!

    I believe he just needs to overly portray himself as a “poor” kid coming from a poor family who rose to enormous riches when all the while he was actually a “blessed” kid raised from the fruits of the labor (Read: sipag at tiyaga) of his poor parents. Why “overly” or “exaggeratedly?” He badly needs the Presidency.

    It is not a doubt he is just a man of ambition, “Aim high,” as Gordon’s old slogan ran:

    I just wanted to be very rich,” Villar says of the ambition of his younger days delivering shrimp for his mother in the Divisoria market district.

    Well, we’ll just take his word for that…

  70. MM, thank you for posting relevant info on such topics. I forwarded your link to my colleagues here and abroad. I understand the post above is your personal opinion. It is very helpful in terms putting things in perspective.

  71. Spot on MM! I couln’t have said it better myself. With all the “manipulations” these candidates are doing, people are switching votes. And voting for the truly deserving we all should. At the end of it all, we deserve to have the best candidate out there.

  72. @MM:

    I would rather throw away my “sayang” vote to the candidate I think should lead this country than vote for someone just to make sure another won’t win.

    I don’t think I stepped out on the street in the past to fight for that line of thinking.

    As an aside, I also don’t subscribe to this being a “fight between good and evil” as some supporters of a certain candidate would like us to believe, and that if I’m not with them then I am not for “the good”. I fear an inquisition is in our cards.

  73. As one of your loyal readers, I have to show my true color: green.

    I go for G1BO on May 10. As for the VP, I am yet undecided but leaning on choosing Mar Roxas not only because he is good but because his cousin Malou, does not raise hell when my young boy eats his jollibee pack when the whole family eats in Mamou :-D

  74. This is no different from Mar Roxas’ padyak commercial. Anyone remember those? I heard he was wearing an old pair of Prada’s on the pedicab. It’s hilarious. He was actually using Villar’s strategy, only it didn’t work because everyone knows he was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. Had those ads been as effective as Villar’s I’m sure Mar wouldn’t hesitate on continuing them. That said, I’m still voting for Mar, because I have yet to judge any candidate or product solely on its ads. If I did that, I wouldn’t vote for anyone. Political ads are so full of s*it.

  75. i haven’t chosen anyone yet for the presidential post. i find it very difficult to be honest. i just have one question to NoyNoy supporters, why be bothered with Villar’s poverty? if it is true or not, who cares? it is not what we need, and if you think voters are not thinking, well, we are. i personally think, the education that all these candidates are posting in their programs SHOULD start today, the day they decide to run for the Filipino people. educate us on what is good politics. And though I am not voting for Villar, i agree with his sentiment, it IS cheap politics.

    My challenge to Noynoy’s camp, is to reassure the public of his planned programs. For example, on corruption, yes he himself will not be corrupt, how about his future cabinet members? how will he monitor them? my HOW here is like any simple question; maybe show a clear and concrete roadmap on how to address this problem. we have heard this many many times and nothing has been done. I also want to understand how his leadership can support the business sector. I have just read his stand on ICT, was he just shadowing from Mar’s stand on ICT development? I won’t be surprised if Vietnam will one day appear as classic model for a knowledge-based economy. On population policy, which will play a very critical factor in the overall economic development, would he really take time to review the RH Bill and not be dictated by the Church on this? population is not the cause of poverty, it EXACERBATES poverty.

    Sorry, I asked for these, and I believe it’s not just me, because I have never heard of NoyNoy Aquino speak or made a stand or advocated any of these issues during his time in public office (Congress and Senate). or maybe it wasn’t loud enough for him to be heard. I have nothing against Ninoy and Cory, in fact Ninoy is one my favorite character, a great leader. I just cannot equate him to NoyNoy.

  76. Am not from these shores but instinctively one reaches for the Aquino / Roxas combination as the one that seems to have the best heart and offer the best hope. They do have the rest of this household’s vote as well……
    It is though seemingly very hard to find information on what any of the main parties or candidates is actually FOR and what they represent. My father took voting very seriously (pointing out that over the years people gave up their lives to ensure that everyman could vote and we had a debt to them to honour) and as soon as I was 18 he took me to listen to every local candidate speak during the first election at which I was legible to vote. He was anxious to ensure that I made up my own mind based on listening closely to all the debates, manifestos and arguements. Since that day I have ironically followed a political leaning diametrically opposed to his own and I think that he would be secretly proud of that. My rambling point is that I am not sure how easy it will be to do that with my own son in years to come when the election process here seems to be driven by personality and style with not much apparent heed paid to substance. Perhaps I am wrong and do not understand the process well enough? I hope so.
    BTW Tricia your point about Mamou is very funny.

  77. Hi, MM! I have been living here in the US for almost half of my life, but I am still aware of what’s going on in our country. Like most of our ” kababayans” here we still think the Noy- Mar tandem is much more honest than the Villar tandem. I just hope that our fellow voters there in the Philippines would be smarter enough now to choose a candidate that will lift the country from poverty and give our youth a better education.

  78. Even people from Las Pinas won’t vote for Villar unless its from his villages where most residents live… ask around the other parts of the filthy city and you’ll get what information you need…. I won’t vote for Villar…. sorry!

  79. Recently, an arguably incompetent lawyer (my very subjective assessment) had been appointed judge here. The reason? The good ones never get to the final list submitted to the JBC. The reason? No political backing. Does it take brilliance to appoint the right people?

    I truly believe our number 1 problem is corruption, aggravated by apathy. Corruption is so ingrained that most people I know are no longer scandalized by it and have come to accept it as a fact. I am voting for Noynoy and Mar because honesty and integrity SHOULD be on the top list of criteria in choosing a candidate. It is important to me that our next president has integrity and the right motive and agenda and the moral ascendancy to lead.

  80. I will vote for Villar since he is a self-made man. Maybe he is not dirt poor as he claims to be but he did not come from an illustrious clan like Cojuanco or Roxas. He became a billionaire through his own efforts. One can argue that he’s was able to marry someone from a well to do family. But then again, he was able to increase that wealth several times over.
    Also, Noynoy has no track record to speak of. His only claim to fame are his parents and Kris. Besides he looks like a wimp.

  81. I agree with you 100% on Mar Roxas. This is one principled guy even before he joined the political arena. I too would have voted for him if he had run for President. I think it was very admirable of him to have decided on giving up his plans to run for President and run side by side with Noynoy if it be for the good of the country. It speaks volumes about the man. As for Noynoy, he isn’t exactly the lesser evil (as I believe JC Delos Reyes would probably be the one) but Noynoy is the more “practical” lesser evil for me since JC doesnt stand a chance.

  82. Bon,

    Just because someone is a self-made billionaire doesn’t necessarily mean he’s good stuff, or that he’d make a good president. The speed in which he amassed his staggering wealth is dizzying, to say the least. I mean, 20 to 25 years ago almost nobody had ever heard of him, and now he’s rich beyond the dreams of avarice. Which begs the question… how’d he do it?

  83. My previous comment was not included …because I forgot that I’m using my complete name for this site and I inputted a shorter name in my laptop… anyway… there’s this e-mail currently circulating re: Shocking Revelations from Former DPWH Regional Director & Former HUDCC Sec. Gen Tony Hidalgo… well the contents are enough to make one’s blood boil… There’s even a map of the controversial C-5 extension which will give everyone a clearer perspective of what the brouhaha was all about… the title of which is very apt… C5 at Taga.

    I think Villar is a cunning businessman indeed… AND I’M DEFINTELY SURE AS HELL NOT GOING TO VOTE FOR HIM.

  84. MM, how can we email this post to friends? You used to have a click button to email post to friends I just noticed that that button is missing.

  85. Ley, egads, I am ashamed to say I don’t know what happened to that feature. Perhaps just copying the url of the post and pasting it onto your email is the only way I can think of right now…

  86. Why is ABS-CBN bias to NOYNOY? It is because of their history with lopez-aquino family? Dapat hindi ganyan, kasi ang laki ng influence ng media sa mga masa na nanood at yung media lang ang kanilang source of information about the candidates. Walang hiya talaga tong ABS oh!

  87. Thanks MM.whilst watching TFC here in the states- i cant help but ponder that perhaps these politicians or their marketing agents think that the masang pinoy is very stupid to believe that he can sell himself coming from a poor family. It just saddens me at times that some of the masa also bite this kind of marketing- is it because of poverty? kawawa naman ang pinoy. Also I cant help it but one of our so called politician friend bought a property here in states for usd 1M.deep in my heart- that money is a big ??? as to where it came from.at times i just wonder how they can get back those millions/ billions of money they used for their campaign. i presume – the madlang people will be the one paying for it, huh.

  88. I also find it ironic that the group that claims to have “GOOD” on their side is the one that is the first to resort to and the most relentless in mudslinging, name calling and personal insults.

    Gee, thanks for bringing Philippine politics to another level.

  89. I don’t think I would want to participate in an election where I had to choose among candidates of varying degrees of evil. I find the idea of choosing the lesser evil so defeatist and cynical. Would I vote for a candidate whom I know can and will cause harm to my country? NEVER.

    I am voting for Noy and Mar because they top my list in 3 categories: honesty, capability and winnability.

    In any case, the “lesser evil” tag applies only when comparing Villar and Erap. The rest are all reasonably honest and capable, in my opinion.

  90. i stopped listening to the radio the last couple of months mainly bec i couldn’t stand listening to ads that implicitly promised a way out of poverty. thanks for the post mm.

  91. Come election day we will be partying it up in Boracay… for this I would like to dedicate this song (ala Pacman) to all the the politicians pertained in this song by …ASIN… here’s to all y’all….MAGNANAKAW…

  92. Does anyone else here receive political propaganda text messages on their cellphone? I keep getting election-related spam messages on my cellphone almost every other day. I don’t know where they got my phone number and the unknown senders are using different phone numbers. I get messages from the Aquino camp, the Villar camp, even from people campaigning for the Makati elections. And I don’t even live in Makati.

    I don’t know what technology is involved in sending large volumes of text messages. Are the telecom companies working together with the politicians to send their messages? Isn’t this illegal? Maybe someone can enlighten me? How can I stop receiving spam messages?

  93. i’m voting for mar but not for noynoy because noy just seems really spineless and incompetent to me. he’s been a legislator for a really long time, and i have never seen him take on any leadership role. and he’s incoherent half the time. if i were his employer i wouldn’t even pick him to head a team. and it’s not like he has helped to quell that impression: his sister has claimed that she supports noynoy financially, including his groceries. are you kidding me?? you want to run a country and you can’t even handle your personal finances? the guy runs to a convent to seek guidance from god on whether he should run or not. no offense to believers, but i find that absolutely ridiculous. we are not in the middle ages anymore. i want my future president to make decisions rationally. i know every candidate has kissed the catholic church’s a* at one point or another, but i think noynoy really believes in its nonsense. am i wrong here? please tell me i’m wrong, because i think this guy might actually win. *shudders*

    i’m thinking of voting for dick gordon, so if there’s any criticism about him (apart from his bossiness and ill-temper), i’m really interested in hearing it. is there any question regarding his integrity? because i could easily forgive bossiness from people who could get things done.

  94. @ Samantha – I would vote for Dick Gordon too. He’s got a good track record.

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