Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Grand Engagament of Romance and Politics

image by kenyon

They had made it public alas, at a time when so many politicians especially those who are aspiring for the highest position in our land are mustering all their efforts and riches to make their names register on the short attention span and memory of the voting public and hopefully get their precious votes too come May 2010 without shedding any additional cash. And others are burning thousands of cash to speed their way to Las Vegas to watch the fight of Pacman vs. Hatton leaving all their desks at the House of Representatives languishing with dusts and mites.

Senator Mar Roxas and veteran ABS-CBN broadcaster Korina Sanchez are now engaged.

This has long been known. But the grand scheme of things according to the political scriptwriter of Sen. Roxas has to make the right timing I think. And obviously now is the right time when the administration is at its lowest satisfaction and trust rating, and strong contenders Sen. Villar and Sen. Lacson are stabbing each other in the Senate floor.

Surely the wedding will not be as silent and secret compared to Juday and Ryan that has surprised and frustrated many of the devout members of Judaism including my good blogger friend Yatot.

They made the announcement during the noontime show Wowowee that not only ironically reminds me of Willie Revillame being the most powerful showbiz personality in the country today earning about 1 million pesos everyday, but also of the so many precious hopeless poor souls of the tragic Wowowee stampede still screaming for the elusive justice to come their way. Justice is not yet served but Revillame and all ABS-CBN executives are still on the loose racking in millions, capitalizing from the desperation of the masses.

And after some special moments of exchanging “how much I love you”, tears ran through the cheeks of Sen. Roxas. How sweet. And to put icing on the cake, he donated 10 pedicabs to Wowowee to be given as prices for the poor (you can watch the video here at Carlo Ople’s blog and of Sen. Roxas
). Sweeter? Hmmm…All part of the romantic script. I just hope that these pedicabs will not bring another stampede in Philippine TV.

With the engagement of Sen. Roxas and Korina Sanchez, the tide and hue of the race to the highest post of the land would also be changing significantly. Presidentiables are already battling it out against one another, opening cans of worms, eating them and spiting to their opponents to the media’s delight. Millions of money that sadly may have come from the coffer of the public are already circulating through expensive TV commercials; once again to the media outfits’ delight. What I am trying to say is that we are already rowing on the murky side of the political water this early; and once again the media parties like hell.

Before Sen. Mar’s engagement, his political ambition is already known even to those who are totally passive about political exercises and discussions. However, there is a good question that was raised: Will the public vote for a president who is single, no wife or children? Is the public ready to have a presidential palace with no first lady? A bachelor president?

This significant question I must say should have also been a strong and important consideration of the Roxas camp and strategists on launching his political propaganda and campaign to successfully capture the presidency.

The Filipino nation in the present modern age when the youth adores Britney and Paris, the Jonas Brothers and Miley, and always live on the fast lane is still one of the most unique in its kind. Despite the so many influences around that pushes people to choose joining reality shows with cameras peeping through even their secret moments of farting instead of going to school and take the long and winding road, the Philippines is still strongly a family-oriented nation. The family is still the key here. “My family, my family…Oh my gosh”, remember? :D

Many Filipinos can’t imagine a relationship without the family as the springboard of thought or the overriding idea. We are dreaming, aspiring, moving and conquering because of our family. We join reality shows, go to work on far away lands as OFWs, study hard and vote (and some of even sell their votes) during elections because of our family; or to put it this way, we are doing all these things for our family. Unlike the US and the European nations, our concept of the family is still the age-old traditional structure Adam and Eve: father, mother and children. We judge, analyze and opine consciously or unconsciously with the family at the back of our mind.

Taking all these important reality of what we are and what we have as a nation, the recent survey of Sen. Mar Roxas lagging behind the names of Vice-President Noli de Castro, Sen. Manny Villar and Sen. Chiz Escudero are just but affirmations of his not-being so popular and his not being appealing to the voters because of what he is.

First as an elitist politician. Remember Erap? To be an appealing politician but not necessarily good who can muster votes to his way, the masses especially the poor that comprises a big chunk of the voting public should have this feeling of “I can relate to that candidate”, that you are not really different from them and through their life and personality they can feel being one with you. Though he came from a time-tested clan of heroes, it is also a clan of rich few.

What he did before? He took the name Mr. Palengke. Ingenious.

What he is showing now? He drives and steers the pedicab right in the heart of a poor area in the country. Still to be seen.

Second is that he is a bachelor. Remember Erap again? Though he has lots of mistresses here and there trying to beat Sen. Revilla Sr. on the top spot of being the politician having the most number of children compared to his age; he was neither condemned by the public nor was ousted to power because of this. The public accepted him because most of the male voters are like him; they can relate to him and he affirms their actions too. What a way to boost one’s ego eh. And many families are like his family. Ironically, though we as a nation have a very family-oriented culture, this however is also a very patriarchal or even chauvinistic society. Though this is not really a very scientific conclusion, I will still opine that his being a bachelor is a strong factor that diminishes his appeal to the voting public and could cause also his losing the presidential race despite having the financial power and political and governing skills.

What to do?

After long years of being into a relationship widely-followed by the public, it is but logical both from the emotional and political situations that Sen. Roxas has to take it to the next level.

Marry Korina Sanchez who is very much popular and loved by the public before the May 2010 presidential elections.

Ms. Sanchez is the great equalizer if not the secret weapon. Her long years of being a broadcaster having widely-followed radio program and TV show has established her credibility as a person with integrity, love for the poor and the average person. “She could become a very lovely and good first lady”, the voters would say. In a nation where the people wants change and seeks integrity, credibility and accountability, there is no more appealing way but to put on the hot list to vote those who advocates these sacred values.

If Sen. Mar cannot pull in much votes for his candidacy, for sure Korina could do the rest to topple others down the stretch.

Of course, ringing wedding bells will not secure victory for Sen. Roxas. It is still a very long race to go; more trash talking, lots of money to stash from banks and more tricks.

Let us see if they will get married before the elections and also see for ourselves if Korina could land the knockout punch to Sen. Mar’s opponents.

Do you think that Sen. Roxas and Korina Sanchez's engagement is part of the political plans for presidency of the former? What do you think are the implications of their most publicized engagement to the presidential race for 2010?

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Jan said...

where's the js-kit? I can't see it, elms.

brixxx said...

@jan: unfortunately this second attempt as of this posting is all but another failure. hope to be back tomorrow with a vengeance and you can then make a good post here with a good and new comment form.

Cody said...

Interesting post. It might be a good idea if they invite the Jonas Brothers at the wedding. :) But then, that won't fit the palenke image. Oh well.

Jan said...

@Luke: nice one. Jonas Brothers, my foot. lol

@Elms: Akala ko we will work on your JS-kit today. Something came up?

Well, buzz me up. I'm just here somewhere, scowling down my pile of blog reading to make them manageable. ",)

Unknown said...

You know what. i hate sen. mar roxas' commercial in that trycikad with the kids. Still, it cannot resume the philippine economy back.
He has made the right timing to engaged with korina sanchez, i guess to popularize and use the famous broadcaster in ABS-CBN for promoting himself to run for any higher position he has right now.

Anonymous said...

He may have lost the more educated person's respect (not so average sampling of our population sadly), but think about what he gained... generally speaking, with a little teleseryes-style action you win over the masses. Think about it... he's appealing to the ideas of love... emotions... things that any average person can understand and relate to-- and these are things that regardless of education or social standing, everyone has probably experienced at one point or another. He has to win them over first to even think about winning the election to then be able to make any changes in the Filipino way of thinking/psyche... He is not going to be able to really make a difference unless he first wins this election... and he is finding ways to get there... Not saying that his tactics are the most dignified way to win an election but just playing devils advocate. Let's just hope this is an act of some very strategic pr/campaign managers and not him... haha.

brixxx said...

@luke: then, maybe asking april boy regino to come home from the US and sing his songs for their wedding may fit the image that sen. mar is trying to impress on people. eheheh!

brixxx said...

@jan: sorry dude, got busy out of the blue today, so js-kit has to be placed on the sideline for a while.

tomorrow is boxing time...on monday i will on leave....

so that leaves us tuesday for fixing my js-kit

brixxx said...

@marian: i think everyone hates politicians trying to impress the poor and the masses with their ads using the poor as props, an insult to injury. but whenever is election is done, they are back to their old ways of being unreachable stars.

brixxx said...

@anonymous: thanks for paying a visit and putting a great comment here.

i agree with you. it is an appeal to emotion for which almost all candidates are doing come election days. however, the crucial part that should be asked but difficult to answer is the sincerity of these actions of understanding and being one with the poor.

for most of us, we know that these are totally political strategies. i just hope that it is not this time with mar and other candidates.

Kevin Ray N. Chua said...

Hi there Elmot! Actually, it's not Senator Roxas blog (http://marroxas2010.blogspot), it's mine. Thanks a lot for dropping by my blog!

brixxx said...

@kevin ray: no problem, thanks for dropping by here too. i suppose you are one big avid supporter of sen. mar?

what is your take on my commentary?

you are always welcome here bro. :D

Cody said...

You have a good exchange of ideas here. You will make a good political blogger, Elms.

April boy... Not a bad idea, actually. ;)

Holly Jahangiri said...

I don't know of any country where family doesn't matter. I'm in the U.S., and I'm getting a little tired of the perception that we don't care about family here. I think we need to be a whole lot more careful what TV shows we export from the U.S., because it seems there are people who can't distinguish drama and farce from true reality.

But never mind that. I think that the problem with an unmarried politician is the subconscious (in some cases, conscious) perception that he or she is more interested in pursuing a private relationship than in governing and doing anything for the governed. And that may be reasonable; hormones are stronger than votes. But that is often true of married politicians, as well. There, we tend to judge them not so much on their choice of partners as on their discretion (both loving and hating them when they fail spectacularly at being discreet, and provide all sorts of tabloid-worthy entertainment for the masses). On sober reflection, we resent that they didn't focus on those they represent - that their petty personal scandals shoved real issues into the back seat and wasted precious time.

Given the way the media has handled the swine flu and other "real issues" lately, some of us could only hope for a juicy sex scandal in politics to stave off unnecessary and artificial fear and panic.

brixxx said...

@luke: thanks! and april boy is indeed not a bad idea...or maybe even lito camo? ahahaha!

political ads are just so many already on tv with all those "pang-masa" songs.

brixxx said...

@holly: wow! thanks for the visit here, and your comment really gave lots of new perspective over what i wrote.

it is indeed sad, that i think it is not only the US but many other western countries that are living up to the perception that you have a loosely-knitted family relationships and values. but i think there is something in the east that is quite very unique when it comes to valuing the family...or maybe as you pointed you, it is because of the shows from fox, cbs, etc that are exported here that people from the east are having these kinds of perception.

anyway, i love your last punch there. media sways things and facts to the direction they like...and we are indeed just waiting for another sex scandal to break the fear and anxiety we are all living into because of the virus and the corruption around.

thanks...thanks holly...:D

Holly Jahangiri said...

Thank you for making me feel welcome, Elmot. I was a little shy about posting.

I would welcome a return of real news, and wish the media would leave fiction and drama to those of us with degrees in creative writing rather than journalism.

I do think that the perception of our "family values" overseas is unfair; I know someone who got his notions of western family life from a mashup of "Little House on the Prairie" and "Three's Company" (a show we merely adapted from the British, in the first place). TV is...not the place to learn about Americans.

At any rate, my father in law lived with us for eleven years - partly at my suggestion and urging. I'm all for the kids growing up and moving out for the sake of their independence - when they're ready - but they know they always have a home to come to here. I make my own dad "check in" with me when he returns from a trip, so I know he got home safely (and I do the same for him). We talk on the phone frequently, though we live in different states. We'll visit in a couple of weeks. It's a big country, but even if we're not close geographically, we're close in spirit, and will generally drop everything to help one another if needed. Families here aren't as "loosely-knitted" as you might think.

Beyond that, it's hard to accurately pin down what makes Americans tick. We really are a "melting pot" of many cultures. I think it's funny when someone here expresses disdain for "Americans" without realizing that they are part of that nebulous entity - if they have chosen to live here, work here, raise a family here - they're part of the equation, aren't they, whether they were born here or became naturalized citizens or not?

brixxx said...

@ holly: i really love your comment here. eastern perspective maybe on the western valuing and structure of a family is quite an overkill...but maybe, who can blame these people who are fed with tv series with sex and the city, desperate housewife, dirty, sexy, money, private practice...etc...

the only saving grace that eastern viewers on my knowledge is seventh heaven.

and indeed, the american society is now very difficult to define as you rightly pointed out that it had become a melting pot of so many cultures.

ei, holly, why not write something about this here on my blog as guest post for all readers here to read a great write-up about your ideas on the american/western family structure against the eastern perception. for sure, it will be great equalizer and maybe an eye-opener as well.

what do you think?

Holly Jahangiri said...

Okay, elmot, you twisted my arm. Check your inbox. All I can say is that we export what you're buying. ;) People overseas can enjoy every minute of "Sex and the City," but shouldn't take it so seriously. I'm glad that you get "Seventh Heaven," too. I don't know that it's typical, but I think it's a lot closer to reality in most respects.

You know, America really is a cultural melting pot - and most cultures haven't really "melted," just found ways to co-exist, more or less, peacefully. To say derogatory things about American culture may be as self-critical as it is critical of Americans, given that our nation is made up of people from just about every country on the planet. If it's so bad, why keep coming? :)

brixxx said...

@holly: and i am just glad you did let do that, ehehe! it is my pleasure to have you here, and now am so excited to open my inbox and share to all your ideas and message.

to define america at this point of time is so difficult...but to define a good friend, one would simply mean "dear holly". :D

Gem said...

I see both points. I think marrying Korina is not only purely about his plans to run as president. I think he is sincere in taking Korina as well as running for presidency.

I don't see something wrong in having a bachelor as a president. But, to the general public, a president with a happy family looks better.

brixxx said...

@gem: i am pretty sure too that true love is also basically the cornerstone of this relationship but who would not dare grab a great package? ehehe LOL

for me too, a bachelor president is not big deal...but for the common folks, this is a question on mar's capacity and image.

thanks for dropping by :D

Gem said...

The problem is, many people choose to vote "popular" people than those ones who had all the right experience, right decisions and right degrees for those government positions.

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