The Philippines is a president’s worst nightmare

Analysis and opinion

By JoeAm

“It is a soft, forgiving culture. Only in the Philippines could a leader like Ferdinand Marcos, who pillaged his country for over 20 years, still be considered for a national burial. Insignificant amounts of the loot have been recovered, yet his wife and children were allowed to return and engage in politics.”

Lee Kuan Yew

CEO’s of successful businesses don’t run things by task forces. They hire competent executives. Those executives hire competent staff. Individual accountability is key.

President Duterte used task forces because he had no idea how government was supposed to run. He’d just bring everyone in. It was a good way to dilute the incompetence and, I suspect, hide things like a botched Pfizer purchase, killings, and Pharmally. His officials mainly blew smoke for five years, offering up excuses and justifications for non-performance.

Top corporations are innovative and efficient. They need to stay competitive with their products and services, and deliver them profitably. They are held to account by demanding Boards and shareholders.

President Aquino had a CEO’s mindset but government is more political than productive. He was meeting with Japanese executives to try to get more investments the day the Mamasapano coffins flew into Manila, and we know how that turned out. You would have thought he’d shot the 44 himself.

The Philippines is a president’s worst nightmare.

Philippine government operates in a politically spiteful world. It’s agencies are inefficient and top officials are always justifying their non-performance. Or forming task forces.

The intriguing thing about the Philippines is that the nation is a huge economic juggernaut just waiting to bust out, but it can’t get there because of lousy presidents or a bitterly politicized playing field. It’s got twice the population of England, is ideally located in the Asian heartland, and holds vast natural resources and a grossly under-utilized labor force. The education framework is sound but horribly managed.

But there is a glimmer of life in the place, yes, indeed, a pink glimmer.

The striking thing about Vice President Leni Robredo is her CEO mindset and drive to excel. She is innovative and competitive, highly organized for goals, projects, and return on investment, and is as non-political as a candidate can be, asking her followers not to fight with supporters of other candidates. It is a remarkable combination.

She is like Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew, really. Different. Visionary. Knowledgable. Compassionate. Wise. Purposeful.

I wonder if Filipinos can see the distinction. Officials often refer to Lee Kuan Yew as a standard of excellence. I wonder if Filipinos, far and wide, high and low, can recognize, through the relentless political and propaganda dirtstorm they face daily, that they have one of their own.


265 Responses to “The Philippines is a president’s worst nightmare”
  1. Karl Garcia says:


  2. Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

    This is frameable, Joe. What can I say? We’ve got it inside us, but lack of faith in ourselves and divine power hold us back. Do you know that we were the first in Southeast Asia to have electronics and automotive industries under the D.M.Guevarra brand? Color TV by Radiowealth and Sakbayan using the Volkswagen Beetle platform, both under DMG? Marcos I coveted it, the owner went into self-exile, and South Korea filled the vacuum: Samsung, Kia, Hyundai, what else puts us to shame? And Marcos II leads in preference surveys. There hangs a tale.

  3. Joe,

    Agree 100%.

    “She is like Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew, really. Different. Visionary. Knowledgable. Compassionate. Wise. Purposeful.”

    But there’s the rub. In a campaign, someone (not VP Leni) needs to punch nuts and hit below the belt for her. Once campaign’s over, then focus on managing stuff. How to win first , is the question.

    I don’t think LKY had to campaign ala Philippines ( he only had 3 races to force to get along, with a common language). But democracy for sure was not the secret sauce.

    • Ge says:

      “With few exceptions, democracy has not brought good government to new developing countries.”
      I wonder what countries are the exceptions. Can the Philippines be one of them under Leni?

      • Since 9/11 the US has forced democracy on the Arab (and Muslim) world directly or indirectly with not so good a track record. Egypt s doing good, but that’s only cuz Al-Sisi unlike LKY has tanks and big guns. I think he meant the Baltic states, pretty sure not the Philippines.

        “Can the Philippines be one of them under Leni?” Someone has to get dirty. VP Leni can surely outsource this to keep her hands clean. But in the Philippines, i imagine you gotta get dirty to birth a healthy democracy, keep the lowest common denominators in check.

        I’ve been watching Yea Russia lately, about a girl in Far East Russia just going vlogs or travel documentaries around her town and around Far East Russia, and seeing the Russian country side and urban decay in Russia just reminds me of the Philippines, but I like her videos because they are hopeful, if not very informative of the status of Russia.

        Watch this video first because it give s you a good handle of who she is and where she is coming from. I wonder if NH felt similarly returning from his American sojourn in CA? then watch her videos about her town.

        Natasha was born in the town of Spassk-Dalny, Russia, located in the Far East, where she grew up in her childhood. For college she moved north to the city of Khabarovsk in Khabarovsk Krai. Khabarovsk is near the Russia-China border, and she has resided there since moving for school. The fact that she has lived exclusively in the Far East part of Russia, which is as far away from the heartland as can be without crossing an ocean, has informed much of her experiences and the content she shares. Natasha had never been to Europe until she visited Moscow for the first time in July 2019.

        I think most Filipinos born around 1990 to 1999 will be very much like her.

        VP Leni’s supporters. If there are more of them than the lowest common denominators, then VP Leni is the next president. This i think is the first time VP Leni is under the microscope, and the question of whether she can get dirty (or delegate the getting dirty part of her office to a qualified person) is gonna be in a lot of voters mind.

        Because that’s always how i’ve viewed DU30 EJKs, as a reprieve for BPO night swift (the majority) from all the lowest common denominators who’ve historically ruled the night in the Philippines. Natasha could be a BPO representative world view thats ascendant, yet in a country laden with crabs just needing to pull her back down.

        Of course, Micha will say its the oligarchs and their neolib system, and I agree w/ that too, but I’m talking clear present danger stuff, whilst the oligarchs are away its the bums and good for nothings nearby.

        • Oh, also (this is relevant to Republics) i’ve been bingeing a bunch of youtube videos about Far East Russia, and also am watching this girl’s videos, she’s not as introspective as Natasha is, but still very informative (she’s got more foreign travel/experience). Specifically her videos of her home town, Yakutsk in the Sakha republic in Russia (there are 22 republics ).

          Theres ARMM and Cordillera, so instead of Federalism maybe do what Russia’s doing with its republics. Completely autonomous except for foreign affairs,

          So ended up Googling about Far East Russia, and basically Russia was just suppose to be around where Moscow and Vladimire was, but the Mongols invaded and did their rape and pillaging, so eventually when Russians got rid of Mongols (they actually still are there in Tatarstan, plus Tatars in Crimea, etc.) they pushed eastward.

          And unlike America’s “Manifest Destiny” which ended up in the Philippines,

          apparently Russians didn’t really get much push back, and Natives in Siberia just kinda accepted their rule, and Russians kinda just left them alone. And the 22 republics have stayed autonomous since. Even during the Communist experiment. Really interesting history.

          Oh, and Russia’s Manifest Destiny prodded by their fear of another Mongol invasion went all the way to Russia– which begs the question, did the Russians know where the Mongols were from?

          • oooops *all the way to Alaska— which begs…


              All the way to Northern California in fact, with Mexico establishing the Sonoma mission to keep the Russians at bay soon after their independence.. but soon after American settlers came so LCPL_X lives neither in Russia nor in Mexico but in modern LA.


              • I knew Russians were here in CA, I went to this place when I was in high school. Russian colony turned state park.

                But I didn’t know the reason for their expanding was the Mongols, i’m sure by the time they got here it was for the fur.

                “Fort Ross (Russian: Форт-Росс), originally Fortress Ross (Russian: Крѣпость Россъ, tr. Krepostʹ Ross), is a former Russian establishment on the west coast of North America in what is now Sonoma County, California. It was the hub of the southernmost Russian settlements in North America from 1812 to 1841. It has been the subject of archaeological investigation and is a California Historical Landmark, a National Historic Landmark, and on the National Register of Historic Places. It is part of California’s Fort Ross State Historic Park.”

          • Russian settlers went all the way to Siberia.. and then across the Bering Strait to Alaska and to Northern California even. The USA bought Alaska from Russia in 1867 as Russia needed money for the Crimean war against the British..


            As for the structure of the Soviet Republics and the autonomous Republics within Russia, look no further than Lenin who was born in Kazan in Tatarstan, origins unclear but possibly Turkic or even Tatar. Like in any settler colonialist setting there was more interbreeding between settlers and the original inhabitants than usually admitted. Lenin’s features do carry a hint of Asian ancestry, but then again there are ostensibly “pure” Russians like Boris Yeltsin who bear a clear imprint of possible Mongol ancestry.


            Re Mongol ancestry I once met a woman in a Berlin disco who told me she had the so-called Hun birthmark. My first question when I chatted her up was whether she was Eurasian and she said no but the Huns came all the way to certain parts of Germany. Didn’t get to check her upper thigh for that as she was waiting for her boyfriend who did come after a while so no chance of a hookup but it was an interesting fact – a bit like they say Beethoven’s curly hair was due to North African Roman legionaries in his area.

            Back to Lenin – it was under him that the monolithic Russian empire became the Soviet Union and the more ethnically homogeneous areas like Kazakhstan etc became full Soviet Republics and smaller areas within Russia became ASSRs, autonomous areas.

            Stalin BTW who wasn’t even Russian but Georgian revived Russian settler colonialism with a vengeance, settling ethnic Russians en masse in places from Eastern Ukraine to Kazakhstan to secure the empire. Also he massively resettled ethnic Germans from the Volga area where Katherine the Great had once invited them to help build farms way out to Kazakhstan, a bit like the USA interned Japanese Americans in WW2 as “enemies”. Even more complicated – there are Russian Koreans or Koryo who settled in the Russian Empire way back in the 19th century. There are Pontic Greeks who were along the Black Sea for ages especially in places like Odessa. Stalin and those after him tried to force assimilation of ethnic Germans, Koryo and Pontic Greeks so they forgot their tongues. That again is similar to the ban on German schools in the USA from 1916 (WW1) that wiped out German-Americans as a group speaking their own language except for a few minorities like the Amish who speak a weird dialect, Pennsylvania and Texas “Dutch” too.

            • .” Didn’t get to check her upper thigh for that as she was waiting for her boyfriend who did come after a while so no chance of a hookup but it was an interesting fact – a bit like they say Beethoven’s curly hair was due to North African Roman legionaries in his area.”

              Ireneo, why is it located in the upper thigh region, and what exactly is said birthmark. I read the Huns were actually the first wave of Mongols centuries before, only they can’t pin point that they were Mongols, but Huns did get a farther reach than Mongols, because Venice is where it is supposedly because of the Huns, horse can’t swim?

              thanks for further details on this,man. I’ve just gotten into all this Russian (and Chinese) minorities vis a vis American minorities, and have come to the conclusion that Americans are more like Chinese, than Russians when it comes to minority cultures. The implications of that i’ve not finished thinking about yet.

              I’m sure all the above also connects to the Philippines and possible solutions therein. Aetas and Badjaos.

              • Don’t know if she was telling me nonsense because what I have looked up on that birthmark now says it usually disappears after adolescence. But she did have a bit of an Asian thing about her features..

                Nobody knows where the Huns who attacked the late Roman Empire came from, they were definitely from somewhere in the East. The Magyars, ancestors of Hungarians were also from somewhere eastwards but no one knows how far just Caucasus maybe, they were another wave of horseback people who attacked Europe in the 9th century, they even overran Bavaria and practically depopulated the original Eastern March or Austria which had to be resettled with Bavarians after Magyar King Stefan accepted Christianity and the Magyars were allowed to settle along the bend of the Danube River. There also were the unknown Avars and the originally Turkic Bulgars who later adopted Slavic culture or maybe also mixed with Slavs and became the ancestors of Bulgarians.

                Mongols attacked Eastern Europe by around the 13th century but Western Europe was already pretty fortified by then. In fact Austria’s Eastern Burgenland (castle country) state goes from north to south an WAS basically a bulwark against Mongols and later Turks. There is a small Tataric minority in Poland somewhere, Tatars are a kind of Mongols too. Re Huns there is the theory that they were the ones the Great Wall of China was originally built to hold back, so they turned around and eventually helped tear down the Romans..

              • Re minorities the famous Russian composer might have had Turkic ancestry.. originally Rahman but Russified like many a Central Asian name as well.

                Russians are a mixed bag, the original settlers of Russia were Vikings, the alleged first ruler was a Viking named Rurik, then there was the main Slavic element, a lot of German settlers and of course the various Asian peoples in their mix.

                Stuff I have read about Lenin in one link I shared here is that his father was of serf origin and his folks might have been Christianized Asians made into serfs by Russian feudal lords. His mother was of partly German-Russian aristocracy.

              • here’s what I Googled on this Hun mark, same as Mongolian spot?


                “According to a study performed in various hospitals in Mexico City, 51.8% of Mexican newborns presented the Mongolian spot on average. Also, the Mexican Social Security Institute confirms that almost the half of Mexican babies have the Mongolian spot. Central American indigenous children were subjected to racism due to their Mongolian spots, but progressive circles began to make the Mongolian spot popular after the late 1960’s.
                The blue spot also appears on 5–10% of Caucasian descendants. Among Europeans, it is almost absent that only 1-10% of the population counted for. But the interesting fact is Hungarians, whom it reaches 22.6% of the population.”

                and this woman,

                “Yulianna Yussef has amassed a large following on Instagram, thanks to her unique birthmarks.

                She often writes to inspire her more than 69,000 followers with stories of acceptance and connection. But in a new post, she’s sharing some of the struggles that come along with her condition, like body hair and even melanoma.

                Yussef was born with CMN, or congenital melanocytic nevus, a disorder that leaves much of her body covered in painful birth marks. Her Instagram following is built on a projection of beauty and confidence, but in her latest post, Yussef lets her fans into the darker side of her photos.”

                I’m sure this would be prevalent in the Philippines as well. Since the Mongols also dipped south, via trade.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                LCX, not just trade. Southeast Asia was part of the Mongolian Invasions and conquests.


              • sonny says:

                I’m still intrigued by the fact that the former USSR had 15+ time zones. 🙂

      • But let me connect all this Far East Russia stuff to the Philippines, before Joe dings us on it.

        So from watching Natasha’s channel I found out about this piece of news that wasn’t even covered by BBC or NHK news cast on PBS here which i really depend on for world news since CNN and FOX are for retards,

        Russian investigators have arrested the governor of a Far Eastern province, who two years ago won a surprise victory over the Kremlin favorite, on suspicion of ordering the murder of businessmen.

        Russia’s powerful Investigative Committee announced on July 9 in a statement on its website that it had detained Khabarovsk Governor Sergei Furgal.

        Russian media reported that Furgal, 50, was arrested as part of a wider investigation into an organized criminal group operating in the region. He will be soon arraigned on charges of organizing the murder and the attempted murder of the businessmen, RIA Novosti reported.

        The charges relate to events in 2004 and 2005, the news agency reported.

        Furgal, a member of the nationalist Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, beat incumbent Vyacheslav Shport in 2018 in a major upset for the ruling United Russia party.

        Tatyana Stanovaya, a Russian political analyst, wrote in 2019 that Furgal was “an undesirable candidate for the Kremlin.”


        One of Natasha’s video , she’s at a protest over the arrest of the governor of her region. Who is well loved by locals there and comes from an opposition party. Her complaints are very similar to things going on in the Philippines , in that MOSCOW (Manila there) sucks up taxes and profits from outside regions and just keeps said wealth, ie. corruption.

        I feel similar paying Fed taxes knowing much of what we pay end up going to Mississippi or Alabama, after it goes to DC. But at least its going somewhere. I could care less about Mississippi but atleast they are getting helped,

        instead of Russian and Filipino politicians/oligarchs simply investing and hiding said loot in the US, i guess it still ends up here. So i shouldn’t complain, but stealing is stealing. Russia, Philippines, at least in the US we see some improvements here an d there. I hope VP Leni finds all this money and returns it to the philippines, she’s gonna have to arrest people

        ala Putin though, can she do so?

          • that JAO is also interesting…

            “The Jewish Autonomous Oblast (JAO; Russian: Евре́йская автоно́мная о́бласть, Yevreyskaya avtonomnaya oblast) is a federal subject of Russia in the Russian Far East, bordering Khabarovsk Krai and Amur Oblast in Russia and Heilongjiang province in China. Its administrative center is the town of Birobidzhan.

            At its height in the late 1940s, the Jewish population in the region peaked around 46,000–50,000, approximately 25% of the population.[15] As of the 2010 Census, JAO’s population was 176,558 people, or 0.1% of the total population of Russia. By 2010 there were only 1,628 Jews remaining in the JAO (less than 1% of the population), according to data provided by the Russian Census Bureau, while ethnic Russians made up 92.7% of the JAO population. Judaism is practiced by only 0.2% of the population of the JAO.

            Article 65 of the Constitution of Russia provides that the JAO is Russia’s only autonomous oblast. It is one of two official Jewish entities in the world, the other being the State of Israel.”

          • Let’s not forget that the was finished in 1916 while in the USA railroads reached the Pacific by 1869.

            That and the harsher landscape including difficult traveling conditions certainly were a factor in the large degree of autonomy Asian Russia mostly had. Even the weather is famously harsh, I have seen a YouTube video about a city which can be -70°C cold.

            • Here’s two book ends I found regarding that period you’ve posted on, Ireneo:


              The Russian–American Telegraph, also known as the Western Union Telegraph Expedition and the Collins Overland Telegraph, was an attempt by the Western Union Telegraph Company in 1865–1867 to lay a telegraph line from San Francisco, California to Moscow, Russia.



              The American Expeditionary Force, Siberia (AEF in Siberia) was a formation of the United States Army involved in the Russian Civil War in Vladivostok, Russia, after the October Revolution, from 1918 to 1920. The force was part of the larger Allied North Russia Intervention. As a result of this expedition, early relations between the United States and the Soviet Union were poor.


              I dunno if this was related to the Russian-American Telegraph plan, but

              Seward’s Folly. On March 30, 1867, Secretary of State William H. Seward agreed to purchase Alaska from Russia for 7.2 million dollars.

    • the more I read about Russia the more I think Russia is very similar culturally to the Philippines, and some sort of Far East Russia-Philippines should be cultivated, since it looks like only 6 hours away by flight. i’ve read also how they are big fans of FMA/eskrima. So theres already a connection.

      here’s blog of a Filipino in Far East Russia,


      I lived in the town of Korsakov in southern Sakhalin Island for three years. My experiences, like any normal human being, were mixed.

      While growing up in Manila, I was one of the few children in my family’s social circle who was fascinated with Russia and Socialism. Some of my father’s friends visited the Soviet Union and talked about how the society did not have class barriers. More than a decade after the USSR stopped existing, I received a job offer with a sub-contractor for the Sakhalin-2 project. What I witnessed in three years, helped remove any wrong ideas I had about Russia.

      It began pretty badly. I landed on a flight from Seoul in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk and was stopped by the immigration officer at the airport. I had traveled on a business visa and assumed that it gave me the right to work.

      It is only natural for people to harbor stereotypes of the “unknown” or the “other.” Since Sakhalin had many Filipinos working as laborers on the liquefied natural gas plant, people generally assumed that all of us were laborers.

      I heard complaints from some Russians about companies hiring foreign laborers when there were many unemployed locals. The firm I worked for said they first tried to hire Russians from the northern part of the island but many of them would vanish for days or even weeks after they were paid their salaries. It is such experiences that forced companies to hire foreigners.

      It was also not easy for me at popular bars. I often had to wait for a long time to be served by bartenders, who would mix drinks much quicker when a Russian or Western expat asked. A close Russian friend told me that this was because they assumed I was a laborer! So much for a society that once was proud of not having any class barriers.

      Of course, there was a lot of good to my life in Sakhalin. I loved the white and sunny winters on the island. I had never seen snow before I moved to Russia and being in the snow was something I never stopped enjoying. I also managed to make some great friends.

      Russians are not open and may even appear cold to outsiders, but once you become friends with a Russian person, it becomes a serious relationship. It has been seven years since I left, but I am still in touch with my Russian friends.

      One thing I have in common with Russians is a love for Japanese food. Sakhalin has both great seafood and some very good Japanese restaurants.

  4. madlanglupa says:

    I never liked him because there’s this air of haughty sense of superiority surrounding him, as if no other country can top him. Singapore is extremely unique due to its strategic location and size, so whatever it has cannot be simply replicated.

    Instead, we have to create our own system, one that is more equitable and balanced, away from Lee’s concept of what should be a happy, contented country.

    • Karl Garcia says:

      Leni can be the humble yet confident female version.

      • Karl Garcia says:

        It would always be Our system.
        But it is always good to benchmark the Best practices and skip the worst practices

    • JoeAm says:

      Well, that’s the trick, isn’t it, to see Leni Robredo, not in the Singapore context, political system, issues, gender, and agenda, but having that thing, the vision, and that thing, the strength of character, and that thing, intelligence, and that thing, purpose, that would enable her to master all the intricacies and pull a majestic Philippine rabbit out of the crumpled hat. But my guess is, yeah, most Filipinos don’t see that.

      • madlanglupa says:

        > most Filipinos don’t see that.

        Besides pop entertainment substituting for enlightenment, greed created by a long history of impoverishment and want are something unspoken of, why most people in this country — even the supposed educated — are so vulnerable anywhere from multi-level marketing, to conmen, and of course the Marcoses purportedly offering unlimited riches and their vision of the future.

        • JoeAm says:

          I’ve not explored the psychology of things, but it seems a bit like “abused orphan syndrome” where one’s beaten-down sense of self leads to a belief that one deserves punishment, so seeks it.

          • In that context, these interviews with former victims of “The Appointed Son of God” Quiboloy are revealing. How often Filipinos join cults where a promise of collective grandeur is lived by personal self-abasement is shocking but the psychology of it..


            Of course there are at all levels those who don’t want to change the system but just what to attain a certain power in order to be able to exercise some degree of impunity. That there are more men among them as feminist author Ninotchka Rosca has noted is given. Well, I guess every bum in the slums who bullies wife and kids is more likely to be for BBM, hoping to become a tanod, while his 40ish ex-wife who did all the work of raising five kids whom he left for an 18 year old babe will more likely be for VP Leni.

            People who hope not literally for the Tallano Gold but for a share of the loot of BBM at a certain level will also exist. They only will realize they are killing the goose that lays the golden egg of productivity when it is too late. That was 1982 in the old Marcos era.

            Mila Aguilar has a theory that a mestizo like me or a white man like Joe would get crucified for: that the mass of Pink supporters are the 1/3 to maximum 1/2 of Filipinos who believe in hard work. The rest believe in a trickster form of getting by that our late Edgar Lores described as diskarte. I guess also a typical Moreno supporter might believe in a mix of hard work and a bit of diskarte, just my feel on those I know – even they might see VP Leni and Kiko supporters as somewhat naive “girl scouts” and “boy scouts”.


            Actually most Filipinos don’t care too much for the big picture as centuries have conditioned cynicism – but for the first time in a long time there is the chance to convince them that progress for the country is a better life for all and their kids.

            VP Leni’s team may have to make more out of the Kaya Natin initiative which does mean something similar to Yes We Can. Move the country out of self-defeating beliefs. The equivalent of Rich Dad Poor Dad but at a cultural, national level.

            • There is also the senyorito culture which tends to deride hard work as being low status. BBM supporters mocking pictures where VP Leni looks a bit tired are a symptom.

              BBM supporters are likely to say a real manager should “delegate more”. Well, we have seen what kind of delegation they might mean in the way Digong has done it recently.

              Marcos Sr. BTW was known to have more of a Country Club Management style.

              • kasambahay says:

                my boss delegates authority but never abrogates responsibility.

              • madlanglupa says:

                > Marcos Sr. BTW was known to have more of a Country Club Management style.

                Had a chuckle out of that. His heirs will go down comfortably with those conspiracists in Mar-a-Largo.

              • Yep, and long before MAGA there was “This nation can be great again” by Makoy in 1965. That was when smiling young Makoy and young Imelda were called the JFK and Jackie Kennedy of the Philippines. Sonny might remember.

              • sonny says:

                Yes, Irineo. We were all caught up in the Camelot mystique created by Hollywood & Washington DC of JFK tenure.

  5. Micha says:

    Singapore (730 sq. km.) is smaller than Marinduque Island (953 sq. km.).

    If all your population is clustered into that tiny island, it’s far easier to whip them up with values like discipline and unity. Their people know that they need to make their self-governance work or else Malaysia will just be too happy to convert it back into one of its province.

    It doesn’t have to deal with insurgencies or secessionist rebels. Its army, navy, airforce, and police forces can effectively neutralize and hunt down any malcontents in such a small area.

    • JoeAm says:

      The problems of those times for Singapore were actually very difficult because of racial and religious tensions. But the point isn’t that contexts between two nations are different, but that leadership character traits of two individuals are similar. Filipinos seem unable to see how strikingly capable Leni Robredo is. I can see it, say it, and most will argue against the idea that a Filipino can be as capable as Lee. Downright amazing.

      • Micha says:

        “The problems of those times for Singapore were actually very difficult because of racial and religious tensions.”

        And they were able to resolve it (or at least maintain a sort of détente) because they occupy such a very small place. They just can’t afford racial or ethnic tension to pester. They can’t afford to further balkanize the island into Malay, Chinese, or Indian quarters. Their hands were forced to find ways to peaceably coexist and cooperate towards creating a functional state.

        In that regard, Lee Kuan Yew as a manager is capable but overrated.

        • kasambahay says:

          lee talks about our forgiving nature, if only that is true, we would have less trouble in mindanaw where generational quarrels reign supreme and a slight is forever.

          anyhow, lee should not crucify filipinos for having short memories as regards the marcoses, how easily the marcoses are forgiven but lee ought to open his mind to the probability of the marcoses buying and bribing their way back in.

          even lee’s singapore benefited from the marcoses ill gotten wealth! imee has invested big in singapore and her one time singaporean boyfriend looked after her investments for her.

    • madlanglupa says:

      To be able to be a very good administrator of an archipelago means dealing with a capricious lot of miniature despots, princelings disguised as mayors, governors or congressmen, more interested in mammon and power; it can be hard being virtuous and have to rein in such a crowd for loyalty, such an administrator have to find ways to ensure their loyalty.

      • VP Leni is dealing with the more forward thinking “rajas” like a Queen seeking Lords to back her. Of course her visit to Iloilo and the mayor there, but also her recent interview with Osmeña of Cebu re strengthening the BPO industry there.

        There are two ways to deal with archipelagic conditions: Malaysia is a federation where sultans take turns at being titular King, while Indonesia is Imperial Java, every single President has been Javanese, the use of Bahasa not Javanese covers that a bit.

  6. NHerrera says:

    The beautiful thing about the current blog is that in my opinion, 90 percent of what Joe has written and 90 percent of the comments so far from the contributors are right. Here are my thoughts, not un-related to the blog and the posts so far:

    – At one time or another a lot of Filipinos, including some top-ranking politicians we disagree with has looked at Singapore as a model of a country to work towards;

    – The PH is not Singapore in having hundreds of islands and myriad other factors that even LKY will have a hard time making PH like Singapore; perhaps the most that can be achieved is something like a 40 percent Singapore;

    – Notwithstanding the two items above, I believe in my bones that the character of the leader is 90 percent crucial to making a Singapore-like country;

    – Notwithstanding the current education system, we are not a country inferior in native creativity and talents, and superior in other talents, that can be harnessed towards the goal;

    – That at this time, I believe 101 percent that Leni Robredo has the necessary character and other traits needed to start working towards making PH a 40 percent Singapore — and for heaven’s sakes not that lazy [Marcos Sr’s word] and persistent liar and complainer, Marcos Jr., or for that matter, the other presidential candidates.

    You may criticize this last item, but to me, I am 101 percent on it.

    • Two postings that give a deeper idea of VP Leni’s character as opposed to the proven senyorito laziness of BBM:

      1) compassion for the many poor in the Philippines, something lacking in the upstart crowd that supported Digong:

      2) this post by Tricia Robredo that shows how her mother is actually an Asian Tiger Mom, behind the friendliness that some mistake for weakness. It does start on a seemingly frustrated note but does finally thank her mother for being her North Star.

      The balance between compassion and driven attitude (VP Leni is known to work a 15 hour day and inspire by example, not by pushing anyone outside her family) is exactly what the Philippines most probably needs.

      Dra. (by now, and actively helping her mother at the pandemic front) Tricia’s posting also shows how her mother managed to balance consoling her when things were rough and then making sure she got back to work. Joe’s Lee Kuan Yew comparison isn’t hyperbole. Many Filipinos when they say Lee Kuan Yew think of what I called The Whip in my last article, Marcosian and Dutertian measures, possibly even with a touch of senyorito bossing others around but not working. That is far from the real managerial deal.

      • NHerrera says:

        Thanks, Irineo.

      • NHerrera says:

        If our editor will allow, I am posting the link to an image attached to a Tweet by MLQ3. It is an answer to the question, why Leni?

      • Ireneo, do you think VP Leni can get dirty? Or be able to delegate dude who can for her? I remember you talking about in Bicol women are good influencers as well as manipulators, and those are fine skills, but can she get dirty?

        • Karl Garcia says:

          I do not think Leni would have to change a thing. She will not play dirty, she will not look the other way either. our past discussion on her meetings with the soldiers and including the left. For me that is not playing dirty. that is including everyone from all sides.

          • Karl Garcia says:

            I am sure if I missed any of your point, you will tell me ASAP.

            • Cory didn’t play dirty, she wasn’t feared, thus post-Marcos the Philippines was is shambles again.

              GMA didn’t play dirty, she wasn’t feared, but I think the men in her life did it for her thus the Philippines was again more in shambles.

              LKY was feared, in Egypt Al-Sisi is feared; in Russia Putin, in China its Xi.

              In the US doesn’t have to play this fear game because it has institutions, but people fear especially when unstable people are in office.

              My point is that fear is kinda important if you wanna get anything done in the 3rd world. Western Europe and the English speaking countries maybe not as necessary, but countries like the Philippines kinda necessary. Thus hands have to get dirtied.

              I’m not talking about meeting with soldiers and/or rebels, and smiles and stuff. Actually getting dirty. Or the ability to do so.

              Does VP Leni have this?

              • Juan Luna says:

                “Thus hands have to get dirtied.
                I’m not talking about meeting with soldiers and/or rebels, and smiles and stuff. Actually getting dirty. Or the ability to do so.

                Does VP Leni have this?”
                There’s a lot to surmise under the category of ‘dirty’ and maybe supporters of Leni Robredo here might be interested to know the specifics. As a centerpiece of discussion, what exactly do you mean by dirty? Does that mean cheating on elections or building up cronies and sharing with them the goodies, etc.? Is it dirty as in restricting the people’s ability to exercise the freedom they have under the constitution or making the press, media to toe the line of the administration? Dirty as in suffocating and destroying the opposition or not being forthright with the people? Dirty as in Duterte dirty? Whatever it is, I think Robredo would not be in politics if she’s not ready to engage in whatever ‘dirty’ tricks politics have to offer.

              • Juan Luna says:

                “Thus hands have to get dirtied.

                I’m not talking about meeting with soldiers and/or rebels, and smiles and stuff. Actually getting dirty. Or the ability to do so.

                Does VP Leni have this?”
                There’s a lot to surmise under the category of ‘dirty’ and maybe supporters of Leni Robredo here might be interested to know the specifics. As a centerpiece of discussion, what exactly do you mean by dirty? Does that mean cheating on elections or building up cronies and sharing with them the goodies, etc.? Is it dirty as in restricting the people’s ability to exercise the freedom they have under the constitution or making the press, media to toe the line of the administration? Dirty as in suffocating and destroying the opposition or not being forthright with the people? Dirty as in Duterte dirty? Whatever it is, I think Robredo would not be in politics if she’s not ready to engage in whatever ‘dirty’ tricks politics have to offer.

              • “I think Robredo would not be in politics if she’s not ready to engage in whatever ‘dirty’ tricks politics have to offer.”

                That’s a good start.

                As for definition, think of dirty as the opposite of clean.

                For example, VP Harris is seen as bitchy (I have no probelm with bitchy as i’ve worked with bitchy females), but lately theres been a lot of leaks from her staff regarding said bitchiness, that to me is a bigger issue because it

                says she’s not able to elicit loyalty from her people.

                Loyalty is love also.

                Thus Fear vs. Love (or the balance therein).

                And Dirty vs. Clean (or somewhere in that spectrum).

                Does that clarify?

                Additionally, I think VP Harris if becomes Pres. will be much like Hillary and use force in the name of human rights.

                That’s neither Fear/Love or Dirty/Clean, but more on Wisdom and Folly.

                This one I’m confident VP Leni is of Wisdom.

                So the question is only on dirty. Does she have this capacity?

              • Karl Garcia says:

                I rather that she commands respect than having the fear factor.

              • Well theres respect and getting things done; and theres respect and not getting things done.

                I think the getting things done typa respect presupposes fear, meaning theres ramifications if the thing that needs getting done is not done.

                So it all still boils to fear. Kinda like how Gandhi was bulldozed by Neru (or actually Jinnah). Respect for Gandhi amounted to not getting things done; whereas respect for Jinnah, got things done, 2 Pakistans.

                Safe to say Gandhi garnered no fear.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                We do not need a Marcos 2.0 and Duterte 2.0

              • NHerrera says:

                Lance, again provokes discussion here on the fear factor in governance (aka “dirty” in his mind) to get things done. And I thank him for the provocation.

                I subscribe to the idea of “respect plus” with regards to officials under the PH President: that they will be un-corrupted and try to do a job well out of respect, but also out of some discomfort strong enough not to do otherwise — considering the PH or Asian setting.

                Whether the discomfort verges on fear or not probably needs a trusted adviser: a politician-cum sociologist-cum modern-day Machiavelli or the President himself/ herself has evolved into that.

                This is a superficial reference to historical figures — did Napoleon get things done out of respect for him or fear compared to Stalin? While on these historical figures, I understand Stalin saved Russia from Hitler’s Juggernaut by the fear instilled by Stalin on the soldiers, through his officials, to turn the tide against Hitler’s. Or is it the Russian winter again?

              • Thanks for the gets, NH.

                I get you. In keeping with the Russian theme above, there’s Ivan the Terrible, Rasputin, and Tsar Nicholas II.

                Fear/respect (let’s just isolate the respect garnered via fear here).

                Ivan = logistics/networking was source of power/fear. Consolidated power.

                Rasputin = mystical crap, only works for people who like that kinda crap, like Nicholas’ wife.

                Nicholas = no fear based on King as God’s own rep. model of power. Commies didn’t factor in God.

                No VP Leni needs not be Terrible but if she can harness a tight net around the Philippines, I can see Fear not being necessary. My understanding of VP Leni and Fear is still evolving so I’m gonna fluctuate here and there.

                But vis a vis campaigning, how do you “show” this to Filipinos without having to do the spaghetti pa baba dance.

              • madlanglupa says:

                > GMA didn’t play dirty, she wasn’t feared, but I think the men in her life did it for her thus the Philippines was again more in shambles.

                She didn’t show it. She was that bloody crafty, that we figured that she might as well succeed Enrile in that aspect.

              • kasambahay says:

                madlang, para sa akin po, gma did play dirty, very dirty. complicit siya, her eyes wide open sa mga gawain ng hubby at ng brod in law, et al. talagang sawsaw si gma; all done under her watch. hindi siya tulog, lol! and she did not stop them.

                apparently, gma played dirty sa election 2004, all that cheating! and like makoy, she appointed friends in high places, loyal to her; her midnight appointment are nightmarish.

                and because of her rank and power, no one dares question gma, not until later.

        • madlanglupa says:

          Her training and personality made her more Mahatma Gandhi than most of the Gandhis.

          • And YET she is in her element – every Bikolano’s element I add without exaggeration – dealing with the aftermath of typhoon Odette now. Bohol, Cebu and Siargao etc. in just a few days and still with a fever from her booster shot. Gang Badoy Capati, Angel Locsin and Manny Pacquiao are cooperating with her, as one can see below even Coast Guard and Air Force are. Showing her mettle as a future President, if Filipinos care to recognize her capability. Also, Robredo People’s Councils (see FB) are all over the country doing their job as volunteers. That group is the inner circle of volunteers and it seems LCPL_X was right, Kiko is indeed the Heavy based on the stuff I see coming from him.

            • Re every Bikolano’s element, two anecdotes. During Yoleng in late 1970 when the eye of the storm passed over Metro Manila, my lolo Atty. Irineo Salazar went out to check the streets. Other people wondered about his nonchalance. Considering that he was born and bred in Tiwi, Albay which is the Pacific coast and often the eyes of storms pass through it, I guess it was routine for him.

              Second anecdote: a severe earthquake hit Metro Manila sometime in the 1970s I don’t recall exactly when, but I do recall my father grabbing my brother (born 1971 so it was sometimes after that) and me like rabbits and making sure we got under the heavy dining table. It was so fast that it must have been a conditioned reflex from growing up in Albay where earthquakes are frequent..

              • “That group is the inner circle of volunteers and it seems LCPL_X was right, Kiko is indeed the Heavy based on the stuff I see coming from him.”

                I hope he plays that role well.

  7. Juan Luna says:

    I agree that we haven’t had a smooth sailing in making our house in order regarding governance and maintaining a cohesive bureaucracy through effective leadership. But what country doesn’t have such predicament? I submit to the view that Singapore and Philippines, while comparable to a certain degree, are not within equal footing in terms of geography, history and national character, among other things.

    All presidents and leaders experience the worst nightmare in their lives because it is the worst job one can have. You have the prestige and authoritative title before your name but in essence you are a servant whose main job description is to take care of the country’s national security interests and expand better opportunity to your people. To effectively do that, you don’t just have to have better education and fine personal qualities or high moral principles and ideals, you also have to have gumption sometimes to go against the same personal qualities to accomplish your goal and maintain balance in leadership administration.

    Based on the positive reviews of Leni Robredo’s capability as a leader, I take the piece as a form of a campaign ad for VP Leni Robredo, hence, I’ll threat it as an offering that invites independent reaction.

    I think comparing Leni Robredo to Singapore’s Lee Luan Yes is a stretch. It’s like comparing David with Goliath or Jaworski with Jordan. I say, easy on the gas. LKY’s story has already been completed, while the narrative on Robredo’s political life is still ongoing. The verdict has already been reached in the former, while the jury is still out on the latter.

    LKY is a historical figure whose accomplishments in life has affected the lives and consciousness of the people of Singapore. Robredo, on the other hand, is more or less trying to emulate LKY’s venerable example to be the same kind of leader for her own country.

    Perhaps she may one day reach the status of a LKY but in the meantime we just have to be content in treating her just like the rest of the contenders: a fallible individual trying to make history.

    • Karl Garcia says:

      All people are fallible. No exemptions.

      • Karl Garcia says:

        Nobody is saying that she is the Messiah. Ok to praise someone, when you say someone is beautiful, do you compare her to the Miss universe? (Btw some winners were not all that)

        I remember the tributes to Pnoy withh the qualifier: “he was not perfect, but…”
        Nobody is perfect!!!

  8. Raffy Dayrit says:

    We support VPLENI for 2022.

  9. Karl Garcia says:

    Hope those who were in the path of the typhoon are ok.
    Joe, kb How are you?

    • NHerrera says:

      He must be OK — his internet service provider seems uninterrupted in its service. 🙂

      • Karl Garcia says:

        Just saw his tweet. Thanks NH.

        • Ten hours ago this was the update of the National Grid Corporation which gives a fairly good idea of which areas were hit the hardest:

          The following posting gives an idea of how strong Odette was compared to Yolanda in 2013 and Sendong in 2011:

          BTW I checked and found out my hunch was right – in my youth in the Philippines there was only up to typhoon signal No. 3, Signal No. 4 was introduced in 1997 and No. 5 in 2015. Signals 3-5 encompass more or less what was all Signal No. 3 back in the days. Most probably an analysis of recent storms will bear out my hunch that they are getting worse and worse.

  10. NHerrera says:


    Here is a very well-written statement from Dr. Eric Topol on the Omicron. I much appreciated it. I hope the other readers will too.

    [It has to be blown up to read effectively. Fortunately, I am using a laptop with a touch screen. The usual size smartphone used in landscape mode will do the trick as well, I believe.]×4096

    • German Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach is also warning about omicron:

      Lauterbach is an epidemiologist and was a major critic of Merkel’s Health Minister Jens Spahn – the new German administration has done the right thing in making him Health Minister, like Topol he sees a lot of trouble coming down the bend.

    • NH, here’s an exact opposite article on the same subject , weirdly published by Atlantic– I’m still trying to decipher if Atlantic is getting into satire now. Written by this guy, maybe sonny’s familiar with this dude?

      Matthew Walther is editor of The Lamp, a Catholic literary journal, and a contributing editor at the American Conservative.”

      I’m pretty much living a monk’s life since March 2019. Theres a few times when I think i’ve had COVID19 just never bothered to get tested, breathing exercises and good nutrition seem to do the trick. Plus since 4 or so months ago I’ve gotten Moderna (2 shots).

      I take this serious for sure.

      So i kinda giggle inside when I read articles like these, given my stance on humanity’s fast approaching 8 Billion mark. cuz if i had to strategically target the folks i want getting COVID19 severe its the folks described below…

      “Indeed, in my case, when I say for a long while, I mean for nearly two years, from almost the very beginning. In 2020, I took part in two weddings, traveled extensively, took family vacations with my children, spent hundreds of hours in bars and restaurants, all without wearing a mask. This year my wife and I welcomed our fourth child. Over the course of her pregnancy, from the first phone call to the midwife a few months after getting a positive pregnancy test until after delivery, the subject of the virus was never raised by any health-care professional, including her doula, a dear friend from New York.

      I don’t know how to put this in a way that will not make me sound flippant: No one cares. Literally speaking, I know that isn’t true, because if it were, the articles wouldn’t be commissioned. But outside the world inhabited by the professional and managerial classes in a handful of major metropolitan areas, many, if not most, Americans are leading their lives as if COVID is over, and they have been for a long while.

      In my part of rural southwest Michigan, and in similar communities throughout the country, this is true not despite but without any noticeable regard for cases; hospitalization statistics, which are always high this time of year without attracting much notice; or death reports. I don’t mean to deny COVID’s continuing presence. (For the purposes of this piece, I looked up the COVID data for my county and found that the seven-day average for positive tests is as high as it has ever been, and that 136 deaths have been attributed to the virus since June 2020.) What I wish to convey is that the virus simply does not factor into my calculations or those of my neighbors, who have been forgoing masks, tests (unless work imposes them, in which case they are shrugged off as the usual BS from human resources), and other tangible markers of COVID-19’s existence for months—perhaps even longer.”

  11. Re #OdettePH Marcos Jr. partying was not unprecedented, his father did the same when Yoleng hit Manila end of 1970. Yoleng BTW is one of my oldest memories as I was just 5 1/2 years old then but of course I didn’t know Marcos Sr. went to play golf in Baguio.

  12. Karl Garcia says:

    For almost six years the Philippines has been the president’s day time bad dreams because he was sleeping all day.

    • Karl Garcia says:

      Overdelegation no not to Bong Go but to all czars.

      • kasambahay says:

        committe on committe, their jobs overlapping. too many czars on full pay but with less productivity. and when things go bad, nagtuturuan sila. sabi nga, he can delegate authority but cannot abdicate responsibility. bet, he does not know what to do and those he hope knows what to do are – clueless! and waiting direction from him!

        I think, his beauty sleep did not work, he still looks like a dried walnut, lol!

  13. Then why was PNoy ridiculed for taking charge like this:

    While MOST Filipinos I guess still don’t really criticize a man who does flyover typhoon relief AND will most probably vote a useless party boy?

    Unless all the surveys are totally wrong and the elections super manipulated I do ask myself how damaged Filipino culture is for the most part.

    Almost like in a Lino Brocka or so movie where the father is totally irresponsible but “macho”, the mother does all the work but is ignored, and still the father and also his party boy nephew are respected the most.

    Attitudes that condemn the place to eventually slide down to 4th World status, unless the attitude of responsibility and accountability takes root among at least half – Mila Aguilar estimated it’s only ca. 1/3 which might not be enough

    • I was answering kasambahay the answer got misplaced

      • kasambahay says:

        instead of that dumb eagle, it ought to be pnoy on the P1000 bill, lol!

        • kasambahay says:

          anyhow, pnoy was always ridiculed no matter what he did; heckled as well, but that did not stop pnoy from doing his duty and putting the best interest of our country above all. those that put their family 1st were loudest hecklers. and surprisingly, the late bishop cruz, was one of pnoy’s hecklers. pnoy was not big church contributors, unlike pork barrel queen, janet napoles, who has bishops on her employ. as well, corrupt politicians have all the facades of keen churchgoers, donating to the church, receiving holy communion and supposedly active in community life. all to mask their extracurricular activities of robbing the nation, siphoning millions if not billions of funds to their non existent projects.

    • Karl Garcia says:

      When he does not show up he is accused of not caring. When he keeps on showing up thy say that he is micro-managing. Darn if you do, darn if you don’t.

      • NHerrera says:

        I was reading Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird” again, and somehow these lines connected with your comment, karl”

        “Atticus, you must be wrong.”

        “How’s that?”

        “Well, most folks seem to think they’re right and you’re wrong. . .”

        “They’re certainly entitled to think that, and they’re entitled to full respect for their opinions,” said Atticus, “but before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience .”

    • “Then why was PNoy ridiculed for taking charge like this:”

      Everyone looks so at peace in that there room, precisely because no one would ever think PNoy was gonna EJK them.

      Hence the query on VP Leni’s ability for dirty. Will the Filipinos with power fear her? Because that’s the only language they understand.

      • Micha says:

        “Will the Filipinos with power fear her?”

        Ok, you’re on to something. Who, exactly, are these Filipinos with power?

        • Filipinos with power but not enough power when faced with a deadly President.

          • Micha says:

            You want the drug lords, specifically, to be fearful of a President Leni?

            • NO, the drug war was just an excuse, it was designed to get the lesser Oligarchs, hacienderos, and bidness men. Those powerful Filipinos, Micha. Powerful but not so powerful.

              Which means there are powerful Filipinos that won’t respond to violence or the threat thereof, so those VP Leni can use other means. The beauty with dirty is it covers a wider swath of the population, its well understood.

              People are on their toes. To Ireneo’s original question, no pe Filipinos were not on their toes.

              • Micha says:

                In the totem pole of power, it’s the oligarchs that sit at the top which need to be pruned if we are to create a more equitable and progressive Philippines.

                Drug lords are just like rats; easy to scare.

              • I see.

                Then MMT and CBDC and UBI.

                That’s the only way to up end everything, Micha.

              • Lovell Natabio says:

                I would suppose that Ms. Leni is aware of this power structure in the country but has no ideological inclination to confront or disturb the highly unequal system.

              • Micha says:

                Tsinelas, lugaw, and distribution of goodies during typhoons will not cut it because she could always be outdone by the moneyed rivals.

              • So by that logic VP Leni or BBM, makes no difference. Same-same? Further, if this is a beauty contest, VP Leni will win,

                but if Imee were to step in, Imee would win?

              • Micha says:

                In a sense yes, Marcos Junior or VP Leni won’t make any difference based on what they’ve been presenting so far in the campaign trail. All motherhood statements trying to appease the needy but is not prepared to dive into the enlightened confrontation of Orwellian class struggle.

                Marcos Senior tried to overhaul the power structure only to end up cultivating his own set of oligarchs.

              • Are you pro-BBM then?

                Why or why not?

              • Micha says:

                I am definitely not pro-Marcos Junior. I am one of those who will not forget the abuses of the senior’s martial law dictatorship and his trashing away of our sovereignty by succumbing to the Washington Consensus.

                I’ve been hoping Leni would make a left turn but she seems content with her niche at the center.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Re : CBDC

                re: MMT


                The author thinks MMT impedes government spending so the author prescribes Krugman’s deficit spending.

              • Micha says:


                From the BW article:

                “MMT’s zero interest rate will prevent an increase in aggregate demand (moving the IS curve to the right) to satisfy full employment.”

                On the face of it, this statement is downright illogical and detached from reality. Every layman knows that when you have a ZIR, it’s very tempting to take out a car or housing loan. The advocacy for ZIR is only borne by the fact that the cost of money, for the federal government at least, is zero.

                Nonetheless, MMT does not so much rely, as I understand it, on monetary policy to achieve full employment. The way to employ buffer stock of labor is through federal fiscal spending on Jobs Guarantee.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Again, thank you.

              • “The way to employ buffer stock of labor is through federal fiscal spending on Jobs Guarantee.”

                Or UBI.

                cuz i gotta feeling those are gonna be nose picking jobs, jobs where you don’t really do anything except waste everyones time or destroy the environment or both. Thus you pick your nose til end of work. then wash and repeat.

  14. Those looking for the hidden strength of VP Leni only need to look at the picture below (evac center in Cebu) especially at her eyes looking firmly.

    It is unfortunate of course that many Filipinos are superficial and think bluster is real strength. Or cynical thinking that goodness and strength cannot be in the same person – which is why they go for women leaders who are like Inday Sara or GMA.

    • kasambahay says:

      isnt is wonderful! there is now a woman the likes of leni robredo that defies the mold, not daughter of president supposedly said to rise up for the occasion! but radical ang pagmahal niyan, respectful, honest and trustworthy! – that’s my leni.

      filipinos now have a choice: to go for the a leader, or go for a slaver.

    • IMHO, this is not a good gauge as BBM has similar photos of him in Southern Leyte, giving goodies and talking to survivors and stuff.

      I don’t think BBM has this dirty quality, though I think his sister and mom does. So the quicker VP Leni can show this quality, she beats BBM hands down no doubt. Right now theres doubt. Due to same ness. Both VP Leni and BBM are clean, only diff is the father of the son was dirty and dirrrty.

      • kasambahay says:

        I dont know how bbm could be clean, decades he worked for the govt and yet did not pay tax. and now he wants taxpayers to vote him in for the top job!

        I think, taxpayers ought to make their votes conditional: bbm will only be voted if he pay tax and must have receipt to show.

        • Here’s another way of looking at this tax stuff (i dunno the details but that’s usually the case over here, eg. Trump and Biden, etc. Pandora/Panama papers… Hunter’s paintings ).

          Remember Clean/Dirty has nothing to do with taxes, just violence/ no violence. Tax is another matter, though maybe related.

          • kb,

            I just Googled this issue and turns out its been paid and this was a 1990s issue– now resolved? Article says as of 2001. That’s 20 years ago!!!


              • Right. My point is that this is a 1990s thing, from the father.

                “The BIR assessed the taxes due on the Marcos estate at P23,293,607.638. It made sure proper notices were given to Imelda Marcos. Carpio referred to a June 5, 1997 Supreme Court ruling on a Court of Appeals decision that Bongbong raised to the tribunal. The SC ruling noted that formal assessment notices were served on Imelda and her lawyer on Oct. 20, 1992, again on her, Bongbong and their lawyer on April 7, 1993 and June 10, 1993.”

                But , kb, you said: “, decades he worked for the govt and yet did not pay tax.”

                So has BBM paid his (his) taxes? His own, that is BBM’s taxes?

              • kasambahay says:


                yong query nyo po is subject to comelec hearing: bbm disqualification due to non payment of tax. until then.


                The issue here is whether there was material representation. Petitoners said there was because for them, Marcos knew he was ineligible due to prior conviction, but still put in his COC – as all in his past COCs – that he was eligible.

                To backtrack: In 1995, Marcos was convicted of tax evasion and failure to file income tax returns (ITRs) from 1982 to 1985, when he was vice governor then governor of Ilocos Norte. In 1997, the Court of Appeals (CA) acquitted him of tax evasion, but sustained guilt for failure to file ITR. CA did not impose prison sentence, but ordered him to pay deficient taxes and fines.

                Marcos had said before that all his salaries as governor and vice governor were donated to scholarship funds, and that taxes were automatically deducted.

                In the 1995 ruling of the Quezon City Regional Trial Court, Judge Benedicto Ulep said: “No evidence was brought forward by the defense to show any withdrawal for any charitable or civic purpose. In fact, not even a single centavo was used for such purpose.”

                In their memorandum, petitioners said if all his salaries then were donated to the poor, “how was he able then to support himself and maintain a lavish lifestyle befitting a prince?” Petitoners said this was clearly willful and deliberate, and not a minor infraction.”



                this is much ado about nothing. as evidenced by their proof?!!! LOL!

                “how was he able then to support himself and maintain a lavish lifestyle befitting a prince?” that’s not proof that’s a question.


                “Court of Appeal’s ruling of Marcos did not spell out accessory penalty. Article 73 of the Revised Penal Code says accessory penalties are presumed.

                Marcos said: the tax code is not the revised penal code.

                “Neither the 1977 tax code, as amended, nor the present tax code contains a provision equivalent or even remotely similar to Article 73 of the Revised Penal Code,” said Marcos’ memorandum.”


              • This case reminds me of when Trillanes asks DU30’s son to show him his tattoo, and the son say Hell no!.

                its essentially bs, legal mumbo jumbo. The Philippine legal system. Open to interpretation. Best interpretation is one with money attached. thus this BBM tax crap is going nowhere.

  15. Juan Luna says:

    Just to go back to the issue of the writeup and to follow up the previous conversation inquiring as to whether VP Robredo is capable of getting dirty, LCpl_X (@LCpl_X) insinuated, through some examples, that she may be wanting on this category. So far, I have yet to read a response citing a contrary opinion about the question.

    My take is, VP Robredo would not be running for president if she does not know what the office is all about. With regard to ‘dirty’ I inquired specifically what he meant but LCpl_X (@LCpl_X), in reply, is a little bit coy about it. I enumerated the possible ‘dirty’ acts but not one was chosen. So the guessing continues. To return and to rephrase the inquiry, is VP Robredo capable of doing ‘dirty’, not fear, but dirty acts to have an effective administration?

    There were responses as to impression about her strength and capabilities but those are just that, impression. Sometimes, impression helps in measuring up a person’s leadership capability but most times, if not always, it’s a faulty barometer. Substantive proof such as track record, past performances and accomplishments and even failures give us a clear picture of a person’s leadership profile.

    Maybe we can start from there.

    • I am on my way to Xmas holidays and socmed break now so I won’t be able to answer that question. Even if I knew more I wonder if I would say it openly. Ha!

      There are lots of articles about the VP here. Enough to read until New Year.

      Merry Christmas to all of TSOH and see you BEFORE Rizal day y’all! 😘

      • kasambahay says:

        lucky, lucky you, Irineo, enjoy our christmas break. I’m on duty! ready to face the downside of christmas head on, the drunken fights of those with too much christmas cheers, the mishaps and accidents of the festive season; sometimes the best and worst of humanity collides at christmas. all in a day’s work. keep safe.

    • Sorry, didn’t mean to be coy, was aiming for poetic.

      But to be blunt, is VP Leni willing to kill for her worldview, like Hillary re human rights.

      DU30 with EJK. That Tiger mom example shared by Ireneo is good insight, but the ability to use violence is the dirty I’m talking about— caveat , not dirrrty that’s a different definition one I’ve clarified here previously).

      Dirty = violence, or the fear thereof.

      (Merry Christmas, Ireneo! Happy new year if we don’t see you then, and remember deep breathing exercises for COVID)

  16. NHerrera says:

    My Season’s Greetings to everyone in TSH. Enjoy the Holidays in whatever way you can especially with family and real friends — stay safe.

    [Notwithstanding all the analyses and advice on vaccinations, boosters regarding the Omicron variant, and those still to come, a properly worn medical-grade face mask is a simple tool we should not take lightly; and stay at a distance if you can. Haha, Omicron is a “fear” even the powers and the oligarchs respect, undoubtedly.]

    • Micha says:

      Virus says, “I am the Lord of host, the alpha and omicron, be ye afraid.”

      • kasambahay says:

        the unvaccinated have much to fear, the virus love them! they make up the most number in ICU and the most number of deaths.

        those doubly vaccinated and have their booster shot already are in much better position, healthwise.

    • LOL!

      it does look way more scarier, NH!!!

    • Karl Garcia says:

      Seasons’ greetings TSOH

    • NHerrera says:

      Quoting from an NYT article:

      “If I’m in a situation where I have to rely solely on my mask for protection — unvaccinated people may be present, it’s crowded, I don’t know anything about the ventilation — I would wear the best mask in my wardrobe, which is an N95.”

      • kasambahay says:

        we will soon be making transition from pandemic to endemic and routine covid testing will be stopped. the only time people will be tested is if they are sick and in hospital.

        it is hoped that by that time, we shall all be vaccinated and have ample protection vs the virus and its variants. all borders will then be opened and economy put back on track. we will all learn to live with the virus, the way we learned to live with all other diseases like the drug resistant tb, hiv, aids, etc.

        if in doubt, use mask, cover the nose and observe correct hygiene, kahit vaccinated.

  17. madlanglupa says:

    Anyone with access to Bam should tell him that Marcos represents a very scary quality, as I recall some readings of the Bible and why we should be wary of false messiahs, those claiming to be new “Christs”, when, of the Anti-Christs we have dealt with, this might as well be the worst of them all.

    • kasambahay says:

      who knows? marcos might overdose on cocaine and off he goes! dead on arrival, lol!

    • NHerrera says:


      The current blog is titled, “THE PHILIPPINES IS A PRESIDENT’S WORST NIGHTMARE.” If he becomes the President he will have no nightmare — living an unconcerned, lazy, indisciplined, and unproductive life through the nightmare his father wrought on the country and after his death — instead, he will be the worst nightmare of the PH.

  18. Juan Luna says:

    I can sense some sort of sexism on that statement and I’m surprised that pro-Leni people are slow to react in defense of their idol. Regardless of who those Filipinos with power that should fear the president, it would be good to know why such query is posed on Leni Robredo, the only woman running for pres., while there was complete silence about it on Digong and others. Was Digong feared because he was a man capable of playing ‘dirty’?

    Pardon me but I have to belabor on this angle because LCpl_X (@LCpl_X) raised a piece of an issue worth discussing and most importantly also an opportunity for the pro-Leni people to express their support and belief for her in a different way than the usual praise that has become the staple of conversation.

  19. Juan Luna says:

    This was the statement I was referring to.

    “Hence the query on VP Leni’s ability for dirty. Will the Filipinos with power fear her? Because that’s the only language they understand.”

    • Juan Luna,

      I don’t need anyone to belabor my point, I can belabor my point all by my self. Ask karl.

      DU30 was feared. Was he judicious in his use of violence and the answer has to be no, because the big fish he couldn’t get, so in a way he was wise because he knew his limits, but weak because precisely because he knew his limits. thus having limits is the weakness.

      VP Leni is a big unknown. BBM is already known , he is unwise and weak– but as NH says with good physical coordination. Inday Sara is strong, but wisdom still undetermined. But she’s only vying for the VP position so not really important at this time.

      BBM is sailing on the strengths of his Father and from Inday Sara. And may just get elected by this.

      VP Leni can take on a pitpull or a Heavy. That’s Kiko, and we can gauge from how VP Leni deploys said pitbull in the arena. If hinted that she is the mastermind, then Filipinos will say VP Leni is not only wise and kind, but has sharp teeth. Showing these sharp teeth, and proving she has ability to bite ferociously will garner respect , as only Filipinos understand this word.

      If I’m Batman, I don’t need a Robin, Juan. I don’t need a sidekick. I call this sidekick trolling, not concern trolling.

      • Juan Luna says:

        You got it all wrong my friend. I’m not belaboring for you I’m belaboring for the issue to get tackled or discussed because I thought that it was an interesting subject matter. Being a victim of it, I know what an ad hominem is. I inserted your name, NOT YOU, because I have to attribute where the statement came from, you.

        If I want to be your sidekick I’ll ask you but until I say so, let’s stick to the topic because its a worthy one. We’ll learn a lot by having dialogue on issues presented that we think is important. You raised it, I think it was important and I sounded the alarm to know and hear what the pro-Leni people think. I have my point of view which I partly expressed already as a starter for the conversation.

        Talking about ‘dirty’ is not a simple thing that is why I pursued your point regarding VP Robredo because you raised it about her. And being the lone woman in the ticket I find it intriguing that your point of view about ‘doing dirty’ acts, which I have to admit is valid, was focused on her.

        I mean, I can defend her, why not, but who can fight and defend VP Leni against critical reviews better than her followers? I don’t agree with the premise of your statement but I’d rather hear first the direct audience of your view because they know better than me who VP Leni really is.

        That’s my whole point.

        • “And being the lone woman in the ticket I find it intriguing that your point of view about ‘doing dirty’ acts, which I have to admit is valid, was focused on her.”

          Walden Bello is capable of going dirty. For sure. This isn’t sexist. But realistically, only BBM and VP Leni are the choice. hence the focus on VP Leni. And no there is no answers, this Robin is what you call a thought experiment, we’ll know soon enough. There’s no answers, because the answer is performative.

          So unless VP Leni shows us, we’ll have to accept that we are outsiders and thus won’t ever see the secret recipe. These questions are for our own consumption. VP Leni’s staff or VP Leni herself may be reading. But they won’t volunteer answers, nor should they. Concern or sidekick trolling, you never demand answers— makes you look desperate.

          Go on to the next subject. Don’t piggy back off mine.

            • kasambahay says:

              yay! did that pic reminds you of sara? namugbug ng sherif, safe in the knowledge her father is president hence above the law, to be feared and obeyed. or else, green with envy, her color, got the subliminal, lol!

              • Just to clarify , Inday Sara punched (several times) the Sheriff. and it was before DU30 became president. The Sheriff himself said he deserved it for failing to obey Inday Sara’s request of delaying said order. Inday Sara said sorry.

                As to the color, LOL! unintended actually I was going for the double slap, back and forth. But green and red works too. With Robin’s cape Yellow.

  20. Juan Luna says:

    “DU30 was feared. Was he judicious in his use of violence…”
    Duterte was feared because of his propensity for violence. If we go by the logic of your statement, it is doubtful if VP Leni has an inclination for violence, hence, people may not fear her.

    She is unknown when it comes to ‘dirty’ acts, hence, her leadership is highly in question. Is that a fair evaluation of your statement, my friend?

    If it is, I don’t agree with it. I don’t judge people based on their tendency to do violence. I don’t vote politicians based on their capacity to wreak havoc through mayhem.

    Leadership, a civilized, legal and formal one, does not need ‘dirty’ acts’ to be effective. You are not supposed to scare people or them fear you because you’re the leader. A leader inspires people to do things they never thought they could. A leader has qualities and skills that enables them to guide, persuade and influence people and I don’t remember ‘dirty acts’ or being feared is one of them.

    If we use dirtiness as criteria in choosing a leader, we lose our humanity as people.

  21. Juan Luna says:

    “Walden Bello is capable of going dirty. For sure.”
    So, he’s better than VP Robredo?

    “But realistically, only BBM and VP Leni are the choice. hence the focus on VP Leni. And no there is no answers…”
    BBM and VP Leni are the frontliners, yes, but you focus only on her about ‘dirty’ because of what, she’s a woman?

    I don’t agree that there is no answer. When it comes to ‘dirty’ acts, I assure you, both camps will tell you their bets don’t do ‘dirty’ act (which up to now is not clear for your failure to establish what you really mean by it).

    And it was sexist because you single her out and talk about her being a big unknown when it comes to ‘dirtiness’. You are assuming that since BBM, Pacquaio, Ping and Isko are men, ‘dirty’ is a non-issue with them.

    The only thing, my friend, that can exculpate you from the statement you made is to clarify what ‘dirty’ is and why you are alluding only to VP Leni when it comes to doing dirty acts.

    • “Leadership, a civilized, legal and formal one, does not need ‘dirty’ acts’ to be effective.”

      That’s why I qualified it with only in the Philippines (or the Third world in general).

      “don’t do ‘dirty’ act (which up to now is not clear for your failure to establish what you really mean by it).”

      Dude, how many times do i have to say it, violence. A slap or a punch, or Peter Lim sitting across the table from DU30, to EJKs, to narco cops getting sent to ARMM or Cordillera, or cops getting shot. Salvage.

      “You are assuming that since BBM, Pacquaio, Ping and Isko are men, ‘dirty’ is a non-issue with them.”

      Rich men in the Philippines are already pressumed to be dirty/dirrrty, many of them losing their virginity to prostitutes and/or their maids. From their ROTC days in high school, they learn how to pay off active duty military.

      “So, he’s better than VP Robredo?”

      For sure, Walden Bello is 10 times better than VP Leni and BBM, et al. he’s done the work, he’s just not electable. Inability to compromise, reminds me of Bernie. VP Leni and BBM, et al. pale in comparison to all that Walden Bello has done.

      Believe that.

      • Karl Garcia says:

        I am still sensitive to your use of third world, but it is what it is.
        I agree on the points raised by Juan Luna.
        My answer on the “dirty “would be the one below.

        • Ireneo: “Attitudes that condemn the place to eventually slide down to 4th World status, unless the attitude of responsibility and accountability takes root among at least half –”

          1st World is Anglosphere and the West;

          2nd World was/is Soviet and Communist bloc countries.

          3rd World all other countries.

          4th World, worst than 3rd?

          Juan (and Karl’s) agreed points works for 1st World situation, maybe even 2nd World (like Baltic countries?), but will not work for 3rd and 4th Worlds, or may be sure it can but at best its like staying on neutral, never reverse nor forward, karl.

          Dirty = Violence/ or the threat thereof.

          Done with wisdom, you’ll go forward.

          No wisdom, its reverse.

          DU30’s… just basing on populace’s favorable ratings of him, i’m thinking was a forward rather than backward. But i gotta feeling VP Leni will keep it neutral staying in place or go further forward (if a little violence or threat is applied).

      • Juan Luna says:

        For sure, Walden Bello is 10 times better than VP Leni and BBM, et al. he’s done the work, he’s just not electable. Inability to compromise, reminds me of Bernie. VP Leni and BBM, et al. pale in comparison to all that Walden Bello has done.
        Better on what? If he’s ‘better’ how come he’s running as a spare tire only?
        It’s hard to buy that VP Leni and BBM pales in comparison with Walden when he cannot even function normally as a public servant. If he’s not electable, then, he’s worst not better. If he cannot compromise he’s in a wrong job.

        • Better in a sense that Bello has experience, way before, when VP Leni and BBM were probably still in pampers. He’s been around the block, block meaning around the world, and thus is plugged into world change stuff.

          He and Briones are two people that have actually opposed Marcos and the system of Oligarchs that Micha’s always talking about. They still probably have sparrow units at there disposal, but old age compels them not to be dirty.

          But I’m sure during their hey days, those two made DU30s EJKs look like kindergaten games. I do concede that they are just not savvy politicians.

          So better here is only in the sense that both these oldies fit the bill of going dirty. 70s style stuff. Which was the point of this thread, the ability to go dirty.

        • Micha says:


          Walden has all the gravitas of an academic, not a traditional politician – unlike that fraud from Batac whose smirk readily tells you he’s out for another duping scheme.

          If the collective intelligence of Filipino voters is at least 3 points higher they should have been clamoring for Walden to run the higher office.

          • Juan Luna says:

            I have nothing against the man I’m just reacting on a post that says he’s better than the two top presidential contenders. He could be that good but not being in the race is a bummer on his followers. Well, there’s a lot of good people and better leaders who should be running but they’re not. Sometimes the stars must aligned. You should be good at what you do, you want to do it for the people and you have enough support to make it happen. Absent one, it ends up as a pipe dream.

            • Who wears aviator sunglasses to Zoom?!!! No one! Only Walden Bello can pull this off, I say if the Philippine gov’t gives him control of some Presidential task force for whatever, I guarantee the guy’s gonna clean house, then ensure Food Sovereignty.

              That’s both dirty and healthy.

              I hope VP Leni seriously considers this. Walden Bello’s bad ass, man.

              • madlanglupa says:

                Was. I don’t know but it appears that either he or his supporters are trying to shape himself as the equivalent of Bernie Saunders. That unfortunately most Filipinos are wary of progressives due to a long diet of McCarthyism.

  22. Juan Luna says:

    These questions are for our own consumption.
    True, that is why you need to establish in a clear and concrete manner what you mean by VP Leni being capable or not capable of being ‘dirty’.

    Merry Xmas my friends! 🎇

    • kasambahay says:

      merry christmas to you too!

        • Karl Garcia says:

          I am after the good proposal and someone to implement it. Lacson cried foul when candidates copy cat his pet proposal. That should not be. He can ask his VP wannabe about Sotto copying.

          • Imitation is fine, karl. its the belaboring part, I prefer to belabor my own points, and not have to outsource. Hence, the Batman slaps. But I like imitation.

            • Karl Garcia says:

              On socmed I saw a different suggestiom than yours and that Leni should partner with Tito Sotto. To beat both BbM and Sara.

              • karl,

                I’m not really sure who exactly Tito Sotto is , I know his family hails from Cebu politics.

                The plan with Inday Sara was precisely to undercut BBM’s momentum, which is taken from his Dad’s mantle and lately from Inday Sara’s. So my point was to put a wedge between BBM and Inday Sara (loud enough and you’ll cause sabotage between the two).

                If Tito Sotto does have considerable power in the Visayas and Mindanao areas, then maybe it could work. But I think Sotto is more seen as an actor than a Cebuano politico really. So I don’t think he’ll have much energy in those regions. I could be wrong.

                But time’s up, karl.

                BBM is fast breaking out as the candidate, and Yellows (I mean Pinks) are still on their high horse. good luck with President BBM! Switch that high horse to Red Horse.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                if you are not interested in googling him,
                here is the handy dandy wiki.

              • Oh no, i’ve Googled him karl. But it just doesn’t seem his base of power lies in his being Visayan, but more on being a star way back when, thus won’t cause a dent. That’s his gramps. But he seems to be fairing better than VP Leni. but i think most Filipinos are now tired to actors in politics.

      • kasambahay says:

        I’m suspicious of cayetano. the 50million kaldero still simmering in me mind, the overpriced gears of our athletes, the suppliers of the game complaining of unpaid bills; cayetano religuishing the chairmanship right after the game finished, leaving suppliers in limbo.

        this is so reminiscent of tactics of conmen and scammers: building lofty projects but then relinquishing ownership so soon after customers have parted with their money, leaving customers with no recourse.

        people need help, more now after odette. whether tied to odette or not, the said emergency aid proposal is good, but with cayetano in the mix? I would have to look over me shoulder!

  23. Karl Garcia says:

    Again on playing dirty. Leni can get her hands dirty by just doing her job.
    She can delegate, but must consistently asking for updates and reports not just for camera time like what Duterte keeps on doing with his midnight task force meeting with bong Go present ALL of the time. Follow through is important.

    Being pragmatic.
    I don’t care much for centrist, leftist, etc as I said before it is a Prism ISM thing. all the ISMS in one prism gives you rainbow colors.
    Be utilitarian is some form.

    Not asking for a saint or a martyr.

    As for Manny giving planeloads of relief goods ,That is commendable if 100 percent sincere.
    if it happened during the campaign period, I guess the Comelec can issue an exemption.

    But the documented giving money, he can do that even if loses the race as a private citizen.

    BBM giving 2M
    return the hidden wealth and pay tax debts including the 200 B estate tax. That is more than 300 B in total.

  24. Karl Garcia says:

    Happy Holidays!
    Have a safe and healthy New Year!

  25. juan gadonlee says:

    is Isko. the ex basurero, a better alternative. he can be a basurero again to clean up ang mga basurang politico. after all, he is able to make manila cleaner where other mayors were just having lip service. once a basurero, always a basurero this time a different basura…mga basura na makakasama sa bayan.

    • Karl Garcia says:

      I saw potential, but he is a Duterte enabler and a Marcos fan.
      That is just me.

      • kasambahay says:

        isko forgot to say that he too sleeps under kulambo!

      • juan says:

        i saw he is a potential, a good enabler too but on the good aspects of the person. i believe yorme is his own person. i am both a fan and hater of marcos. i despice the atrocities and the corruption he and his circle did just to cling to power. i like what he envisioned for the country and the follow up work for it. But politicians are politicians . and many or few people believe dna prevails.

        • kasambahay says:

          as ex-basurero, isko’s expertise is in urgent need sa kabisayaan. so much debris to be cleared after odette’s fury. now is the time for isko to shine and put words into action, lead the clearing operation. bisaya pa naman ang origin niya.

          • isk says:

            This reminds me of former Sen. Mar Roxas. In times of calamities, he’s the public servant who takes the job personal. Nakapanghihinayang…

            • kasambahay says:

              mar roxas was hero to many, he was the better person, he just did not have enough votes to be president.

              I think, the 16millions voters now realized they put the wrong guy in malakanyang. this guy has his own eroplano for his own personal use, like to survey ground zeros with camera in tow, promises aids and money by the sackful and yet deliver next to nothing.

              sana this guy will use his own personal eroplano to drop food to victims ni odette. he has so many czars who should be able to advice him how best to do food drops. aha! it’s matter of money, marahil walang pondo, lol! too much money has gone to fight the rebels, rarely a cent left for contingencies.

              the guy who got the 16million votes is literally ill prepared for the rainy days.

              • kasambahay says:

                ahem, mar roxas knows how to ride motor bike, I know of one who is also into motorbikes, his daughter as well, like father like daughter. have the two recently used their motor riding skills not only sa pagmamayabang but also to help or kaya run errand for our kababayans in dire need?

                as regards dating basurero isko, I have expected him to know how to operate a bobcat, he would be not only helpful but most needed in clearing odette’s debris sa kabisayaan mismo where his roots are.

                methink, it is useful for politicians to be able to drive a bobcat, lalo na ngayong palagi tayong binabagyo at may mountains of debris left behind.

                hands on, bobcat driving politicians would be able to help their own district soonest; carting away rubbish, better than twiddling their thumbs, waiting for days for help to arrive, pretending to be busy and managing non existing workload, lol!

              • Wasn’t how DU30 was placed on national scene, thus 2016 Presidency precisely because of this stuff? Typhoon and planning.

        • Karl Garcia says:


    • madlanglupa says:

      He is but a politician of “old traditional ways” in a young wrapper.

      • juan gadonlee says:

        i prefer the old traditional politician when they were gentlepeople and statesmen not the old trapo. yes yorme is a young wrapper, may be a bit inexperienced but nobody came in as a president with presidential experience except reelectionist in the past (e.g. Pgma). all learn on the job. i prefer a president who surrounds himself with average people who has first hand experience of harsdship and pulse of the average masa. government management is not like a business for profit. the profit is a good and efficient service to the people’s needs. present day pinoy politicians enter into politics to protect their own interests and businesses and not the peoples needs.

  26. Juan Luna says:

    Isko is good but I think he’s in a hurry to be president. He could have at least use the full terms of being Manila mayor to maximize his potentials for the city’s benefit. Erap has been mayor for years and a good one but we know what happened when he tried to play president. Same thing with Digong. As mayor for years, he did ‘a lot’ for Davao City. As president, he did to the country what he did in Davao and he’s comparable now to a rotten fish. Isko should learn from these examples.

    One more thing, he has to stop talking about his jologs days because he’s no jologs now. And it’s boring. Imagine talking jologs stories in front of jologs audience? ‘kaka-asar! 😠 I know he has to sell his self but he has to sell it in a way that people will think they’re getting a new and good product. You cannot do that by starting to mouth “masarap ang pagpag”. Stop the cosplay, Isko! 😄

  27. JoeAm says:

    Thanks to all for the vibrant discussion. Enjoyed the long read after a few days of cleanup. Merry Christmas to all.

  28. Micha says:

    So Pulse Asia just released its latest survey and it seems that Marcos Junior has a commanding 30% lead over VP Leni in a sample of 2,400 respondents.

    Quo Vadis Pilipinas?

    Iterum crucifīgī?

    • Just loudly support Inday Sara already, short circuit the Marcos machine. there’s nothing to lose.

      • Micha says:

        Not so sure about that.

        A resurgent Marcos is what we get after decades of mismanagement after 1986.

        • “2,400 respondents”

          Well i guess we can just ignore the survey and say that maybe most of those 2,400 people are from Ilocos area.

          • Micha says:

            Not at all saying we ignore the survey.

            I’m saying we should understand what’s going on with the voters, how they were trashed all these years after EDSA and if they prefer to have Marcos Junior today, who are we to interfere with their wishes.

    • kasambahay says:

      fools gold! bbm should enjoy and be happy, that might be the only glory he will ever have, lol!

      it’s the final tally that counts.

    • Maybe NH can explain the statistics better here. But once a candidate breaks out so considerably, it tends to become a self fulfilling prophecy. It’s a done deal. Just support Inday Sara already (that idea might work). 😉

        • kasambahay says:

          the final tally of election 2022 that counts, not the final tally of election 2016.

          you’re 6yrs off the mark, corporal!

          methink, bbm et al are trying hardest to influence comelec’s coming decision re: his disqualification hearing, lol!

          • kb,

            Just superimpose it with the pattern from 2016. Poe fans went to Roxas camp. The breakout was with DU30, it just happened later on, whereas here 2022 BBM broke out much earlier starting Dec. 2021. Study the pattern.

            • kasambahay says:

              I’ll wait for the final tally 2022, thanks.

            • NHerrera says:

              In response to Joanna Pilipinas on Twitter about the survey numbers in NCR, I said this:

              That is the one that greatly distresses me too when I look at that Dec 1-6 Pulse Asia survey.

              In response to the comment you made on your blog article about Sara, I forgot to mention that in Game Theory, to be useful, three items are necessary:

              – the players or “actors” concerned;

              – the options the actors are analyzing and the clear values that each actor attach to the different combinations;

              – that the actors are rational — that is, during the cold war between US and Russia, despite the antagonism of one with the other, it is clear that the highest authorities in both countries are seen to be rational.

              In your blog article, the two actors are Leni supporters (not necessarily Kiko supporters) and Sara supporters (not necessarily BBM supporters; in fact, you believe, many Sara supporters are not BBM supporters) — so there is clarity in the two players or actors.

              The options for Leni supporters are to vote LS (Leni-Sara) or LK (Leni-Kiko). The options for Sara supporters are to vote LS (Leni-Sara) or BS (Bongbong-Sara). That is clear in the GT I am framing. But unlike the Prisoner’s Dilemma where values are clear, such as being freed, being jailed for 10 years, or a reduced sentence for both if no evidence or confession is extracted, the values here are not clear. It is only probabilistically assumed — by you, for example; no agreement even in the TSH contributors. That is problem number one in the GT analysis.

              There is no strong or even reasonable rationality in the Sara supporters, even in the Leni supporters in your thesis (my assumption, Lance). This is a fatal factor in using GT in this case.

              Nevertheless, here is a chart that adheres to your concept. Note that what is important in the assigned values are the relative numbers, not the absolute ones. The Nash Equilibrium in that GT table is (LS, LS) — that is Leni-Sara is the equilibrium combination for both Leni supporters and Sara supporters. I will discuss it no further. Or I will be banned from being considered even as a student of Game Theory. BTW, I learned GT on my own because of my fascination with the math content of the theory — I did not study it as part of an academic course.

              • “The Nash Equilibrium in that GT table is (LS, LS) — that is Leni-Sara is the equilibrium combination for both Leni supporters and Sara supporters.”

                Greatly explained, NH.

                Thanks! I remember vividly the scene from the movie when Russell Crowe comes up with this equilibrium too (which ironically got the Nash equilibrium all wrong, fucking Hollywood, man! lol! ).

                which weirdly connects with this documentary I just watched this evening on Netflix, NH (been raining here all day long).

                I guess it connects to what Micha said below, “if we have decent, progressive society.” How do you achieve that? by reaching Nash equilibrium,

                “Nash equilibrium is a set of strategies, one for each of the n players of a game, that has the property that each player’s choice is his best response to the choices of the n–1 other players. It would survive an announcement test: if all players announced their strategies simultaneously, nobody would want to reconsider. “

                That is to live life w/out fear, like Marc-André Leclerc… which connects us to Michel Foucault’s flipping of the oft heard platitude that Knowledge is Power, wherein he says nope, Power is Knowledge. and therein lies why Micha’s dream of a decent, progressive society (both there and here, NH) is seldom achieved.

                My point, watch the Alpinist.

        • Skip to 7:11 mark, NH. But watch the whole video if you have time.

          I remember watching kids there flying kites. And for some reason I just remembered this memory just now in thinking about the Nash equilibrium, Leni-Sara, the Alpinist, Foucault and the Philippines. And Micha’s comment.

          What the kids did in preparation was they’d glue glass to their kite strings, it was a weird mixture shoe glue I remember but heated up, then the strings in spools were unspooled and dipped into said glue mixture, usually wrapped in between around separated trees or structures, to let hang dry.

          Once dried, you have to carefully spool because now the string is laced with glass particles (from light bulbs). They would tie tape cardboard around their index fingers as to not cut their skin while flying the kites.

          Then kites are constructed using carefully shaved bamboo, thiniest possible while ensuring theres strength. Paper is then glued to the bamboo skeleton. And you have a sturdy kite.

          The kids fly it with other kids’ kites, then soon enough you find out what the glass stuck on the strings were for. To cut other strings. The kids were crossing their strings whilst the kites flew up in the air and attempting to sever each others kites. Winners get to own the disconnected kites (if still intact).

          its not quite Alpinism, NH, but that whole game of flying kites and dogfighting them, seem to encapsulate a great course in life, unfettered by schools and dumb adults who think they know better.

          Those kids, had a plan, purpose and organizing which no schools could ever teach. The pursuit of said activity gave ’em so much joy I remember. This i think is the best (or one the better) examples of Power is Knowledge. The act of doing necessitates acquisition of knowledge. There’s freedom in volved here, theres no rules or regulations broken, but there was a lesson in violence, mastered.

          Ensure your glue mixture is superior. That’s logistics right there, and any student of military knows that is the whole point.

          When there’s no Freedom, you get the regular Power is Knowledge, wherein people with no freedom (and much fear, since slavery and fear are connected) get their memories redrawn, eg. the Marcoses are cool. Completely no agency. No freedom. Too much fear.

          My point here is Freedom, is like flying kites.

          (Anyone here flew kites like this when young, or still do? )

          • sonny says:

            LC, I did. The reward of the game had appeal that was not necessarily the same for everybody. Watching other kite-players, the dogfighters were in the slim minority.

            • I did notice that, sonny.

              Some focused on the design of the kites, ensuring manueverability; but most focused on the glassed strings. Then there were young kids who just like watching all those kites up in the air, and then those who loved the recovery aspect when kites were cut loose.

              But the skill was in how you positioned your string vis a vis the opponent’s. This part reminded me of the Filipino escrima arnis concept of push and pull, where you feel a pull you push and vice versa. kinda like judo, but more tactile. Related too, like when you press someone’s elbow to his rib area, most people just let them push you. Like an off switch almost.

              Like grabbing the scruff of a cat, or pushing the whole cat down, and they just comply, there’s this instinct to freeze, thus giving you time to do other stuff that’s profitable to you, but not your opponent.

              Then there’s also a bit of cock fighting too, wherein certain roosters will raise their wing, say left, but actually lunge right, which means it was a feign, which not instinct but a deliberate act.

              My point i guess is all these lessons are ingrained in Philippine culture already, fight dirty. Or just fight. It is a martial culture underneath all the niceties.

              MERRY CHRISTMAS, sonny!

              • sonny says:

                🙂 The best of the season right back at you, LC! My kite-flying memories are mostly a phase of childhood & friends: pleasant, serene, idyllic. It was part of Summer frolics, vacation; Christmas play gravitated around firecrackers, home fashioned cannons (bamboo (kerosene) & empty bomb shells (calcium carbide) & blinking lights & displays.

      • Micha says:

        I agree. Average voters are impatient and tired of mediocre personalities. They want radical action, radical social reforms.

        Not finding any, they went for Duterte in 2016 with his invectives toward conservative establishment figures and institutions.

        Of course that didn’t changed voters’ lives that much either (still precarious, still poor and alienated) so now they re-imagine and pine for the Bagong Lipunan of Marcos years.

        • Exactly, when is VP Leni gonna show some teeth? How badly does she want to become the One.

          • Micha says:

            Too decent. Too prim and proper. Too conformist.

            She’ll be the runaway choice if we have decent, progressive society.

            • kasambahay says:

              official election campaign for national posts starts feb, 8, 2022 till may 7, 2022. would be nice to see how the presidentiables position themselves then.

              for local posts: mayors, governors et al, official election campaign starts march 25 2022 till may 7, 2022. there will be new faces as well as old faces too.

              • Micha says:

                Leni is trying to be decent in a country that is anything but…

                There is obscene poverty and obscene inequality – failure of ruling elite to address and establish meaningful reform after EDSA 86, hence the resurgence of, and desire to re-institute, Marcosian vision of a New Society.

  29. Juan Luna says:

    Politics is not for the faint of heart.

    And that applies not only to their followers but also to presidential contenders themselves. The latest Pulse Asia opinion pols giving advantage to Bongbong Marcos (53%) may have rattled some people into submitting to the possibility of a Marcos presidency. But I think it is still too early to assume that it’s a done deal because we’re still five months away from the fateful day of choosing the next president. Everything can still happen.

    On the same survey, VP Robredo got 20%, while Isko and Pacquaio got 8% each and Lacson 6%. Clearly, if ‘adjustments’ are made in favor of VP Robredo it’s going to be a close fight come May 2022.

    If for anything else, the survey should serve as a reminder to other parties there is still chance to channel the course of the country’s history by rethinking their position of whether to pursue or not their personal goal to prevent the country from relapsing to decomposition.

    Now to the survey, what is that 53% mean? Yes, it means ‘in favor of’ BBM, but what does it indicate, really? Does it mean they favor him because he’s intelligent and quick-witted? That majority wants him because of who he is, the most capable, hence, the best candidate?

    I’m sorry to disappoint, but not among those mentioned justifies the 53% he got from the survey. What the score validates is the people’s interest in him because he has the name Marcos. BBM is not running and representing himself. He is not capitalizing on his person and his accomplishments or his potentials. He is merely clutching on the Marcos label because he knows there is a waiting and salivating crowd, a fan base of his father, that he can defend on. Not only that, the loyalists, the base have offsprings too, the millennials, willing and ready to embrace and swallow everything about the person their parents have mythologize into something worthy even if in truth he’s just a blank wall.

    Ferdinand maybe a myth, but BBM is a deceit.

    The sooner the opposition realizes this the better.

    • Micha says:

      In their news coverage, the international press always refer to him as the “Dictator’s Son”.

      His and his followers’ preference of calling him BBM is a sly maneuver to somehow dissociate himself with the name Marcos.

      I suggest that we, and the local press, start calling him by his real name, Ferdinand Marcos Jr. or Marcos Junior, instead of the moniker which somehow erases people’s association of his infamous roots.

  30. sonny says:


    (for solemn effect, I suggest click on the full-screen mode)

  31. Micha says:

    Santa Is A Psychedelic Mushroom

    “Until just a few hundred years ago, the story goes, the indigenous Sami people of Lapland, a wintry region in northern Finland dense with conifer forests, would wait in their houses on the Winter Solstice to be visited by shamans. These shamans would perform healing rituals using the hallucinogenic mushroom Amanita muscaria, a red-and-white toadstool fungus that they considered holy. So holy, in fact, that the shamans dressed up like the mushrooms for their visit. Wearing large red-and-white suits, the shamans would arrive at the front doors of houses and attempt to enter; however, many families were snowed in, and the healers were forced to drop down the chimney. They would act as conduits between the spirit and human world, bringing gifts of introspection that could solve the family’s problems. Upon arrival, the healers were regaled with food. They would leave as they came: on reindeer-drawn sleds.”

    • Forget Laplanders and Northpole, Micha.

      Early Christians themselves did shrooms. Eucharists used to be really fun.

      “The claim that psychedelic mushrooms played an integral part in early Christianity is an extraordinary one, but Julie and Jerry Brown who put forth this theory in their new book The Psychedelic Gospels have a wealth of evidence to support it, some of which you will get to see below. As it turns out, there is a surprising prevalence of mushrooms in early Christian art, and these are not just generic mushrooms- these early artworks contain multiple examples of both Psilocybin cubensis and Amanita muscaria mushrooms, both of which are highly psychedelic.

      In our second interview with Jerry Brown, Ph.D., we look at just how solid the visual evidence of psychedelic mushrooms is in early Christian art, and what this implies about the origins and early days of one of the world’s largest organized religions.

      ————-Thank you for speaking with us again, Jerry. The presence of psychedelic mushrooms in Christianity is such a fascinating topic. I’m curious, are we talking about psilocybin mushrooms or Amanita muscaria mushrooms?

      The psychedelics we’ve found in early Christian art were pretty much balanced between Amanita muscaria and psilocybe mushrooms. The amanita was very distinct. We’ve had Paul Stamets, one of the world’s most eminent mycologists, verify our interpretation analysis of the mushroom on the green man head in Rosslyn Chapel as a taxonomically correct Amanita muscaria. And in some of the psilocybin mushrooms we found, whether it be in St. Michael’s church in Hildesheim or in the church of St. Martin de Vicq in central France, the mushrooms are represented so clearly that ethnobotanists have been able to tell what variety of psilocybin they are.”

      I hope the Catholic Church brings back psychedelics in their repertoire of sacraments, and steals this thunder from academia and big pharma, Micha. They’ve been really successful among PTSD and addiction trials lately. I’ll write Pope Francis of this Christmas wish of mine tonight, before midnight. its basically about World Peace. 😉

    • JoeAm says:

      Philippines is pretty miserable for over 100 million people. The next war might be fought in the economic arena rather than military.

      • “Why does the cycle take 40 years? I have no explanation. It could be coincidence if there were only three cases. Or there could be some structural cause. But it is there, and it seems to be reaching its terminal stage in China.”

        Japan and Germany were pretty much propped up by the US. The US itself became big precisely because there was no competition after WWII. So capitalism has to factor in wars, as well as cheap labor. Not much competition if I’ve nuked the competition, literally.

        China’s big move happened early this year, when they went CBDC. essentially its the beginning of the end of US dollar dependency. China more than any country is fast becoming green, more EVs, they’ve shut down coal, that’s the reason why electricity is off/on for them right now, etc. So they’ve left the American/capitalist model all together.

        They’ve wised up to this American (Jekyll island) hustle around 2008, they were all like Man! this is one big pyramid scheme. Let’s look into crypto then CBDC, and boom they did it. Now we are in unmapped territory.

        The question now is , will VP Leni keep following the US blind being led by one eyed idiot (they never really fixed the 2008 market collapse). Or will she listen to Micha and Walden Bello and China, and do monetary and food sovereignty. Not really a choice anymore, as the US will set out to do CBDC soon also. And soon realize Jekyll island rules are obsolete.

        What are VP Leni’s economic policies? You can’t hand out food and water all 6 years, and smile and be graceful, and letting America dictate your economic policies is really not so wise anymore.

        • Micha says:

          “You can’t hand out food and water all 6 years, and smile and be graceful, and letting America dictate your economic policies is really not so wise anymore.”

          Joseph Estrada tried to craft a more nationalist economy and he was promptly targeted for expulsion; easy to find the Achilles’ heel.

          DU30 has more rah-rah-rah in his so called pivot to China but has little to show for it.

          Leni could garner more support if she manifest an interest to get Walden as her NEDA secretary.

  32. kasambahay says:

    ka leody got flak for krismas pic posted. bad feng shui to have black cat on his shoulder, its tail trailing, lol!

    • Karl Garcia says:

      Why would people care of Leody had a family pic at his home? What do they eanr a famiily pic on the slums?
      Also that congresswoman(transpo party list) who had a lavish wedding.

      • I think when you start dressing your dog and cat in nice clothes it points to Micha’s “obscene poverty and obscene inequality –” commie or not. It’s just disrespectful when you know there are kids in the Philippines with no clothes at all.

        It’s like when Mar Roxas’ wife said her dogs were like people. Nope.

        So if you’re running for Philippine national post, just don’t mention your pets don’t take photos of them, unless they are under the table or hanging out on the floor somewhere, until you fix that “obscene poverty and obscene inequality –” in your country first.

        On another level, Ka Leody is a commie and shouldn’t live like Mar Roxas , his photos of his home or anything should look more like DU30’s photos of home. The photos below are examples of a worker’s house, no matching dining set no fucking color theme, that’s all bourgeoisie crap. I mean your first teach in should’ve been about that,

        no matching dining sets folks, we’re commies.

        • I hope Ka Leody has a good excuse for this, otherwise bye bye campaign.

          If I were him i’d throw the wife under the bus and say something like my wife actually comes from a haciendero family from Tarlac and she’s high maintenance. And this Xmas photo was actually satire and a think piece, because she’s also a conceptual artist like Yoko Ono, and she wants people to start thinking more about “obscene poverty and obscene inequality –” in the Philippines. and then add (for good measure) I myself hate cats, and I don’t know whose dog that is, Queen Elizabeth’s?

          And show pictures of his real house, looking like DU30s, with lots of plastic bags and plastic chairs, no hint of interior design whatsoever, no signs of luxury. But he needs to explain that his wife is a doña now and that it was her idea for that conceptual art Xmas photo piece.

          • You gotta look your part.

          • JoeAm says:

            It shows how judgmental we have become, and with complete lack of context and facts. Me me me. Never room for others to wobble from our morality of one. Hey, nice that he had a nice Christmas dinner, loves his family, cares for them, and offers a sound platform to boot. I am more for Leody today than I was before because I want my presidents to have a touch of class, and even achievement, or, hell, marrying well. It’s such a petty issue outside the spotlight of modern moral mores, which are mostly lunatic as far as I can tell.

            • If Ka Leody was Mar Roxas then we have no room to criticize , Joe.

              But Ka Leody is a commie, which means he is anti bourgeoisie that’s the definition of Communism.

              Ergo by showing that he is bourgeoisie, everything that he’ll promote , eg. the Communist platform, is now suspect.

              Precisely because he lives bourgeoisie.

              This is more about walking your talk , not really about judgie feelie. Ka Leody’s Xmas photo does not compute.

              Thus the backlash. If anything it should render all communists/socialists there suspect, now I’m wondering if Walden Bello lives this luxuriously and others too, no wonder communism never sprouted in the Philippines, they’re also on the take, Joe.

              • JoeAm says:

                Yes, for sure, that’s the way things work. I just personally think it’s nonsense.

              • its not nonesense, if BBM ‘s platform was socialism and we see him in his mansion criticism would be as valid.

              • JoeAm says:

                It’s nonsense to me. Basic principle: People are allowed to be who they are as long as their decisions on the job are sound. Leody’s platform is sound. Marcos is gaming people. That’s where the argument should be. For me. If it is nonsense for you, no problem. Keep chatting and I’ll keep not reading.

              • “Communism and socialism are political and economic systems that share certain beliefs, including greater equality in the distribution of income.

                Communism and socialism are political and economic systems that are related but often confused with each other. Here is how the two compare in theory and in practice.

                Well, that’s the point, Joe, Ka Leody’s platform is already suspect, precisely because both theory and practice are incongruent.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                Hard to judge like before I imagined Micha as living the life but hates inequality and is leftist.
                Bur it is wrong to judge because we live in an imperfect world.(and we are not a book)
                Easy to say the word hypocrite unless you look in a mirror.

              • karl,

                So if you discovered that the Dalai Lama lives in a nice house with a pool, and enjoys the company of Corgis, you’ll say who am I to judge? You’ll not say, that’s not cool, this dude’s been talking immaterial this and that, and he lives in luxury?

                Caliphman i’m sure lives in mansion like setting, so too chemp. Not sure about what you’re saying of Micha karl is Micha also living large like a fat capitalist? Micha can you send us a Xmas card photo? Because if Micha actually lives in some mansion in the Hamptons,

                it does render all this leftist/MMT (though MMT isn’t really left or right), but the obscene poverty stuff and criticism of VP Leni not going left enough, if Micha has a fucking pool, all that is rendered suspect. Like Mother Theresa wearing a thong under all that white sari. It is

                dissonant. the talk does not match the walk.

              • Karl Garcia says:

                As I said I imagined only so that is judging someone with thinking that perception is reality, but thst is not the case. In the one time I saw Micha commenting in another blog, she was accused of being an intellectual elite who is hard to be understood by the masses. She was even accused of blaming the poor from out of no where. I said to myself, this dude does not know what he is talking about.

                That was the blog of J, an occasional visitor here and he left a link to his blog during the Syete blog of irineo.

              • Ok, I dunno how Micha lives, but since Micha is US based then quality of life will be different from a regular worker type Filipino.

                So let’s say Walden Bello, the dude has travelled the world, working for a certain world view, leftist/communist/socialist. I gotta feeling when he’s based in the US or Europe, i picture him in an apartment just simple, with lots of books, like Pepe Mujica/DU30’s house.

                I have a certain view of the man, consistent with his philosophy and idea of the world.

                Now say if tomorrow he publicizes a picture of his abode, and it looks like Mar Roxas with all sorts of pure bred fancy dogs, and women in bikinis just sunning around a nice fancy pool, I’d lose respect of the man over night. if he is living in luxury, but talking about this and that poverty inequality, etc.

                My point the backlash is well deserved. I don’t know Ka Leody will address it, but i imagine Filipinos have an idea of what a “Ka” is and what that title stands for amongst commies, and if it deviates from that idea then this luxurious “Ka” should be criticized. I personally hope this is the end of him.

                Every time he says, my fellow workers, we will get back at the elites!!! He should be heckled, like Ka Leody can we eat your Corgi! i hear they make great BBQ, we peasants are hungry. heckled.

            • That’s how a “Ka” ‘s house should look.

              • JoeAm says:

                Petty, typical of the social media conversation these days. Moralistic from a personal pulpit, irrelevant in the scheme of what matters. Little better than gossip, old women sitting around the quilt chirping their blessed hearts out.

              • not petty, its compare and contrast.

                Sugar Brown shot back with their Xmas photo. No luxury. Fits a “Ka”, comrade lifestyle. The idea of fighting for equality, & this notion that til then, we live below a certain threshold (and not own Corgis like Queen Elizabeth II).

        • isk says:

          Mr. Duterte’s room reflects his shabby character. Mr. Ka Leody’s home is well kept, reflects good housekeeping/house management by his households. I see good organization and management … not a “Bourgeoise”.
          Happy New Year Sir Lance and to all TSOH contributors/visitors and to Sir JoeAm.

          • JoeAm says:

            Agree totally, isk. Who wants a slob as President? Happy New Year!

            • isk (NH),

              With that analysis of DU30’s home, would that same reflection reflect on Pepe Mujica’s home then? I mean those two homes are both shabby? 😉 And he did pretty good as President of Uruguay.

              No, with Ka Leody its basically like discovering that the Dalai Lama lives in a nice luxurious home with Corgis; its a cognitive dissonance because Ka Leody’s platform is socialism (communism) which purports to even out the wealth gap first- well if he’s already ahead of the pack then wealth gap is not filled. he’s already enjoying luxury.

              This isn’t about interior design, its living your talk.

              • Joe, I addressed it to (NH) above because NH’s avatar showed , but now I’m seeing yours! Weird.

              • isk says:

                “Ka” = Kasama, Kaisa, Kapatid, a kind of brotherhood.. with same goal and aspirations to have better life socially and economically.

              • Yeah, they say Ka’ amongst NPA types;

                but weirdly they in Moroland also say Ka’ (Tausugs for sure), but not short for the words youve indicated. I never knew what the Ka’ stood for non-communist used in Muslim south, but also a term of respect.

            • Micha says:


              Don’t know much about Ka Leody other than he’s from Mindoro and a labor union organizer; had a spat with Crispin Beltran’s KMU and formed the BMP as a result.

              He started his activism after Ninoy Aquino was assassinated and it looks like he’s a moderate left at most; not the hardline commie that you paint.

              Thing is, with or without that little brouhaha over a Christmas picture, Ka Leody only has about 5% chance of winning the race (a generous estimate), he’s not exactly like Bernie in terms of popular support. My guess is that his candidacy is just to plant the seed for the legal left to be able to field competitive candidates in the future.

              For now, I’d rather that he drop out; and since some of his political advocacies align with that of VP Leni, he should endorse and get at least a million votes to her side.

              • Oh, I thought all the “Ka”s were NPA types. like no one calls Bello, Ka Walden, thus he’s more socialist. So i assumed the Ka Leody meant he used to hang in the mountains.

                Still he represents the peasant working class, he should’ve known better than to expose his nice house like that, neither peasant nor working class. just fancy.

                I hope VP Leni stirs clear of him. And his house! Cancel Ka Leody.

                But more importantly, Micha, do you own a pool?

              • LCPL_X, the beef between SOME VP Leni supporters and MOST Leody supporters already happened over the Christmas holidays. As with many Filipino stories of resentment and retaliation there is a backstory to it.

                1) When the pink caravans came out some from the Left (dunno if Leodytes tho) told the Pinks they were elitists for usually being in cars and that they should “touch some grass”.

                2) when the picture of Leody’s house came out, some pinks inevitably saw below post of Leody mocking carbonara as “pale spaghetti” as fake working class posing.

                3) I do think it is posing, as nowadays carbonara is pretty popular in the Philippines, comedian and political satirist Bayaw aka Jun Sabayton, a nearly stereotypical fat Pinoy with a moustache has already posed as “Mr. Carbonara” on MRT stairs and elsewhere.

                Mocking carbonara while having a Corgi does have a touch of hypocrisy. While I do agree with Joe that the spat between Pinks and Reds was trivial, it had some justification though it going on for days was typical for many a petty Filipino quarrel.

                I admit that I did enjoy watching it, and being Irineo I threw a punch or two into the middle of the brawl just for kicks, then went back to being pasimple and not at all involved.

              • That’s what appealed to me with DU30 when I saw photos of his house, Pepe Mujica too. When I saw photos of Mar Roxas ‘ house it was typical rich Filipino house par for the course, not holding it against him, only that it speaks to the disconnect.

                Like I said before I met Filipinos there that had never ridden a Jeep! never. How does that happen in the Philippines? so this disconnect is real, and should be front and center when evaluating candidates, who’s posing who’s not. etc.

                I get the backgrounder, and this whole drama is related to this subject of disconnect, this idea that the ABC-DE not experiencing the Philippines the same. thus if Ka Leody’s base is CDE, he shouldn’t show photos living like AB. just common sense, IMHO.

                For missing this common touch, he should be cancel. VP Leni should not give him the time of day.

              • I had to Google cabonara pasta, not familiar w/ it– looks like pasta alfredo.

              • Juan Luna says:

                Thing is, with or without that little brouhaha over a Christmas picture, Ka Leody only has about 5% chance of winning the race (a generous estimate), he’s not exactly like Bernie in terms of popular support. – Micha
                If we’re going to look at it on that angle it really doesn’t make sense to spend time to a candidate verging on being a nuisance candidate.

                However, there is a lesson to be learned on the Leody’s holiday muckrake because the issue falls on public perception of individual’s image, in this case, a presidential candidate.
                In this day and age, how you project your image matters a lot specially if you are running for public office. You are under a microscope every second of the day. One mistake could be a dead-ender. One need not be an expert of image promotion to tell what is appropriate or not in marketing one’s image. That is why a while back I expressed a contrarian opinion on political videos of some presidential candidates that features them in a situation that is not only entirely opposite of who or what they are but also deviates on the very purpose and reason why they are running.

                Moral of the story? Honesty is the best policy.

              • Micha says:


                Ka is short for kasama and it’s what the peasants and farmers in Tagalog speaking regions usually call one another. Literally means comrade. One does not become a commie when you call his name with that appendage. Radio and TV personalities or anyone who want to sound “maka-masa” do it too.

                I would agree there’s a problem with the PR marketing of his image. Why they fielded him for the post without some significant national prominence is a surprise. Maybe they were hoping to replicate the successful blueprint of Pedro Castillo’s election in Peru – also a trade union organizer and son of peasant farmers who ran as a radical left but is now governing as a centrist because, you know, we all must come into the rainbow middle.

        • Karl Garcia says:

          That is not a christmas photo. You dress up to the occasion not necessarily to impress.

  33. kasambahay says:

    politicians ought to leave covid updates to clinicians. and since sara likes to covid blab, she ought to consult with clinicians before blabbing. vaccination is best protection vs covid, augmented by wearing face masks, social distancing and hugas kamay.

    sabi 1million dabawenyos are vaccinated so far, no mention if twice vaccinated na ba sila. those twice vaccinated have less chance of catching covid, less chance of being hospitalized and less chance of dying. those not vaccinated and got covid, they have no protection against omicron.

    sara ought to emphasize full vaccination for all dabawenyos and having booster shot later.

  34. Jun Chipeco says:

    I have no doubt Filipinos collectively know the ills of their country and the right things to address them. But sadly there are two self perpetuating things that combine to defeat their aspirations. These are poverty and insensitive media. However, “hope springs eternal”. I also believe good will eventually triumph not because of merely ourselves but largely because forces are gathering, led by a leader motivated by patriotic zeal. That leader is a lady. That lady is LENI ROBREDO.

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