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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Grace Poe's Ratings Bubble burst very early

A confidential survey which was shared with this writer indicated a possible bubble burst of Grace Poe's ratings. The survey, which was commissioned by a very influential businessman, shows Vice president Jejomar Binay at no. 1, followed by Mar Roxas at second place yet at 17%, then Rody Duterte at 15% and Grace Poe at 14%

This is expected since I think that Poe's ratings are pretty much linked with her popularity and as what any veteran of political wars know, basing one's political fate with popularity is very risky because popularity is very much dependent on the seasons and of the erratic nature of emotional support. When your ratings are not anchored on solid ground, you become what observers in the showbiz industry termed a "flash in the pan," or a "phenom, " a one-hit wonder" or worse, a " flavor of the month."

Poe's mishandling of the issue on citizenship and of residence is the possible trigger that affected her ratings. What is so unfortunate is the fact that Poe's ratings went South very early in the game. This means that her last two ratings spots have already reached the pinnacle or apex, and which also means that Poe's ratings are not as phenomenal as say, Roxas' previous high ratings or even that of Villar's which lasted for a year or so before it went South.

As the days pass, Poe's ratings is expected to either remain low or goes much lower than expected. The answer really is quite obvious---Poe has not attained rockstar status inspite of her handlers doing every single trick of the book to make her closer to her mass base.

Which means that Poe is really not a very strong bet or contender. Her ascendancy to the top of the ratings game is, to be frank, a media creation.

Bongbong Marcos to risk all?

Everyone agrees that Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr deserves a higher post. For one, he is intelligent. His heart seems to be at the right place, and Bongbong is someone who knows what he is doing and knows how to get what he wants.

Among those who aspire for the top post, Bongbong enjoys a distinct advantage--he is familiar with government and its processes. Bongbong carries with him a surname which is synonymous with greatness. The only real problem is the name also carries with it a stigma.

What stigma? A political stigma that is.

It is not the actions of his father during Martial law that made people hate or even loathe the Marcos political brand name, no. It was the excesses that even Bongbong took part of that most people remember. Most people do not blame Bongbong's father, Ferdinand senior for declaring Martial law. Most people accepted and even admitted that it was a necessary means towards a greater end--a more ordered society.

What turned the people's admiration into hatred was when Marcos and his family, and that included Bongbong were seen living the high life while the rest of the country was suffering the effects of a dire economic recession.

Many died during Martial law, but not a whimper was heard from the majority of the people because that was a silent acceptance of the declared system.

The people only resorted to violent acts when they saw how the Marcosses hobnobbed with royalty while most of the people suffered and reeled from poverty.

It was the people who gave Marcos the opportunity of leading this country towards an authentic revolution. Yet, Marcos decided to veer away from the very reason why he declared Martial law, and that was correct the monumental flaws of the system, and obliterate the greedy elites that hampered the progress of this country from third world to first world status during the sixties.

Marcos, back then, was a symbol of both resistance and renaissance. Resistance because he came from the professional classes and renaissance because the people think that he has the intellect and the might, the power to effect the change, the way every Filipino wanted it.

Yet, Marcos bungled that historic opportunity. Marcos was a symbol for change yet he himself became a target of resistance later in life because he conveniently forgot the very thing that endeared him with the masses in the first place--the masses saw in him, a champion, that was admired because of his wit, his principles and his sense of History.

Now, Bongbong thinks that it is his time to get hold of History and snatch it away from all the other pretenders for the throne. What Bongbong forgets and he must be made to remember it, is that he still represents a political legacy that is as spotty as it is loathsome.

He carries none of the promises that the masses saw in his father during his father's prime. Marcos senior symbolized a cause. Marcos junior does not. What cause does Bongbong represent? The "Tayo-Tayo" ideology espoused by his TV ADVERTISEMENT and which shows him doing a selfie with young people?

A classic empty promise of windmills? The shallow hope that a smile gives to its beneficiary?

Bongbong is risking all if he decides to really accept this illusion being peddled by many of him gunning for the vice presidency even though there is really no pillar by which his belief of a general sentiment about the Marcos regime stands from.

I think this is not the ripe time for Bongbong to jump into the fire. For one, Bongbong must prove to all and sundry that he runs for the right reasons and not because his mother expects him to or his financiers want him to get the highest post.

Friday, August 21, 2015

An Appeal to Grace Poe-Llamanzares--Honor the Legacy and Memory of FPJ

I heard what Grace Poe told my fellow journalists when she graced the birthday celebration of her adopting father before his tomb yesterday. When asked about her plans for 2016, Poe says:

"There are so many character traits of FPJ that I really admire. But even though I admire him, I’m thinking: ‘Am I really capable?’ Yes, he ran for president, but I am studying my options very carefully because I think what is important is that I honor his memory and that I don’t destroy his legacy,” she said.(Read more at"

Thanks,  Mrs. Poe-Llamanzares, thanks for considering your father, Fernando Poe Jr. With this statement, I am slowly reconsidering  giving Grace Poe-Llamanzares, the benefit of the doubt.

Fernando Poe Jr died with his honor intact. When he was running his candidacy, Fernando Poe Jr never succumbed to his own selfish desires--he agreed to run because he saw there was a need for private citizens like him, to stand against the creeping totalitarianism being espoused by former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

When we were still helping FPJ (I was the PR man of Amina Rasul, a senatorial candidate under the FPJ banner), several hundreds of businessmen flocked to FPJ, all desiring to place their bets in his favor. Some of these businessmen have spotty records.

There were several others who also went and tried to get an audience with FPJ. Some of them were known jueteng lords. You know what FPJ did? FPJ politely rejected their overtures. Those millions being offered to him to fund his candidacy could have changed the endgame, so to speak, yet FPJ stood his ground. No to illegal money. No to election contributors whose offers were tied with giving them favors the minute FPJ wins.

That explains why FPJ ran his campaign with very limited funds. There were times when we go to sorties armed with nothing more than our courage and a few hundreds of pesos. Yet we campaigned hard for him.

I risked my personal safety just to campaign for FPJ. I went out of my comfort zone, believing back then that an FPJ win would totally change things. FPJ, for me, was that man on horseback. Believe me, I did not earn a single cent from that campaign. The fact is, I used my own money just to help FPJ win over an accomplished and well-funded opponent.

We were running a campaign with dignity, honor,  and integrity. Our political leader has a rock-solid integrity. FPJ was running under a platform of Honor.

When we were cheated, I was one of those who really felt anger. That explains why I led several groups in that historic Welcome Rotunda rally. I was with Tita Midz (Tita Armida Siguion-Reyna), along with Bibette Orteza and her husband, direk Siguion-Reyna and several others at a makeshift stage atop a flatbed truck.

I remember being hosed down by dirty water by the police back then. Tita Midz was just starting to speak when she got hit by water sprayed at our direction. Police confiscated the truck and asked us to go down.

We went back to Burger King when we learned that FPJ was going there after his meeting at the Sto Domingo church. When we saw our principal, silence ensued. I saw FPJ's eyes. He was angry inside but never succumbed to his emotions. Had FPJ been weak, he could have played with the mob's emotions and called for a revolt. He did not. Back then, I never understood why. Later, I realized that what FPJ did was out of compassion for us. We were like basang sisiw back then. He probably felt pity seeing us all wet. FPJ had a very kind heart in him. He feels for his compatriots.

FPJ taught me a very valuable lesson in life---never be like your enemies. One must rise above them. If they used terror tactics against you, respond with restraint. If you use force, you will only act like them, and realizing that they are stronger than you, even if you use equal force, you will never achieve victory because your enemy will just use more lethal force seeing that you just engaged them and justified their action.

Madame Grace Poe-Llamanzares, if you are listening, hear my voice---honor your Father's memory and keep his legacy intact by not playing politics. Do not succumb to the offers of these businessmen. These sweet entreaties have blunt ends. 

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

How Filipino politicos see themselves thru the ads they air on TV

Disruptiveness--that is one term that distinguishes a great TV commercial from another. A TV ad that does not register well enough in the collective memory is a failed one.

Now being disruptive is not at all being foolish, or stupid just to elicit emotions. A disruptive material that provokes a certain reaction is the most ideal. Let's see how "disruptive" certain political ads right now being aired on TV.

Villar---" Back to trash politics"

Manny Villar is at it again, this time, bestowing to his son, Mark, the specter of being the King of Trash. Villar or at the very least, his political handlers are simply hard-headed. The very concept that has been derided and even led to his defeat for the presidency in 2010, is again, being shown on national TV.

Now, Manny is with his son Mark, being welcomed by a throng of kids living in community possibly again near a dumpsite. Imagine, it has been six years when this concept was initially aired to make it appear that Villar came from the poor, destitute masses. Don't tell me that nothing changed after six years? Is this some way of saying that under a Villar leadership, nothing will change and people living in the dumps will remain where they are. Some people asked me what is this penchant for trash? Why is the former senator so fixated with trash and garbage? Time to consult Jung.

Bongbong's "Tayo tayo" TV aid--with extra selfie

What the people know about Bongbong is he is a serious man, a politico on a mission---of rebuilding this country and making it great again. However, what you see in his commercial is a failed attempt at communicating with millennials. In most of the over a minute TV ad, you'll find Bongbong doing selfies--a sign that for the last six years, all he did was go around town and look for young people and take part in selfies.

Such a selfish person, don't you think? And mind you, being selfish was what people accuse his father of. So now, is he showing the same thing now? Is he destroying the positive perception of people about him having the same intellectual acuity of his father but none of his predecessors' selfishness? Seems like Bongbong is once more trying to do a high wire act.

Mar Roxas---" I am Mar Roxas. I am Pnoy Aquino the fourth version"

Instead of resorting to real live clips of Roxas working his ass off, we see a Mar Roxas being packaged once more, in a traditional commercial. In truth, everywhere you see his ads being shown, aired and listened to by probably millions and the initial reaction from the people is plain and simple, nonchalance. Roxas' handlers simply don't get it.

What people are complaining about Roxas for the longest time is his propensity to act and show himself as another person (i.e, another Pnoy, another Gerry Roxas, another Robredo, etal). Seems like he does not enjoy his own skin. Diretsahan na ito-- for most people, Mar Roxas is a fake.

If I'm Mar, I would not agree on packaging him as a commercial model or an endorser of fakery. I would simply get my camera, shoot him wherever he goes, compile and edit these and show it to the people--unedited, and in all its naked glory. But, nah, Mar's camp will simply not do it. Why? Because probably even from their ranks, they find nothing special about him. He is an ordinary joe being pushed to this thing called politics.

I am sure his ratings will improve but will it bring him victory at the polls? No.

How Grace Poe addresses substantive issues--Judge for yourself

Questions about Senator Grace Poe's true citizenship status is a serious issue. I read how she answered the substantive case filed against her by Lito David yesterday before the Comelec. This second case is very serious in my book because it now accuses her of a crime, which could potentially lead to her imprisonment.

Instead of really addressing David's points one by one, Poe's handlers have resorted to finger-pointing and trivialising the whole thing. In recent days, Poe says her camp is ready to answer this issue. Yet, whenever she opens her mouth now, what journalists get are all motherhood statements and insinuations that some people are behind these poll cases, and so on and so forth.

No substantive answer. No attempt at explaining the issue, only misdirection and trying to sweep everything under the rug.

Poe is partly blaming some people from the LP camp of instigating this legal tussle with her. She even had the gall of telling Mar Roxas that since she is being courted, all of these issues should very well be swept under the rug.

Poe has said time and time again that she is running under a "serious" and "substantive", "high level" platform, yet all we hear right now is she going to this politico and that politico, possibly asking for her "anointment" as Pnoy's heir apparent. These are all actions of a trapo, a traditional politician.  I am in the opinion that Grace Poe is running for the presidency and she is now being misled by some people because she is a potential lackey, and of course, expect her to bestow tremendous favours to friends if she makes it to the presidency.

Such a soft boned presidency is dangerous to democracy. Unknown to Poe, she and her handlers are throwing this very country to the dogs, but of course, they would surely not listen to me. Just read this Philstar article, and judge for yourself if such a person is fit for the presidency or not.

......Manuel Roxas II, Sen. Grace Poe declared yesterday she did not want to give anyone false hopes that she would be his running mate in the 2016 elections.
While she thought Roxas meant well, Poe admitted that she was hurt by questions raised by some groups about her citizenship and residency.
Poe revealed she confronted Roxas, during their meeting last Sunday, about reports that his camp was behind such attacks. She maintained that her camp is ready to explain the issues raised against her.  
She said she would not be sweet-talked into accepting offers, as her conviction and stand on issues are her guides in making a decision.
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Poe also said comparing her possible teamup with Roxas to a love team on a TV noontime show trivialized the issue.
“I don’t want to mislead or to give false hopes,” Poe told reporters when sought yesterday for comment on her latest meeting with Roxas, which reportedly lasted for five hours. 
She said her meeting with Roxas was frank and cordial, and she let him know “may mga tao kayo na tinitira ako (some of your people are hitting me)” whenever matters regarding her possible vice presidential run were being discussed.
“I know because I get reports coming from many places, including Power One,” she said.
Poe said she was still soul-searching and that it is up to Roxas and the ruling Liberal Party (LP) if they are willing to wait.
She said she was grateful to Roxas and the LP for considering her as their candidate for vice president. 
“I am thankful that their doors remain open but I am not encouraging that they wait for me if this will be against their plans or their feelings,” she added.
Poe said she is ready for any eventuality in case she decides to run for higher office next year.
She also said that if there is one thing she and Roxas have agreed to work on, it is their shared sentiment to serve the Filipino people better.

No love team 

Poe also said her being goaded into accepting Roxas’ proposition should not be likened to the “AlDub kalyesere” featured in the noontime television show Eat Bulaga.
She was reacting to Roxas’ jestingly comparing their possible tandem to that of actor Alden Richards and YouTube sensation Maine Mendoza, better known as “AlDub.”
“This is no love team. This is about helping the country and I don’t want to trivialize this issue. While I’m saying that whatever decision I make is personal, it’s a decision that can affect many of our countrymen,” she said in Filipino.
Poe also stressed she did not flatly reject Roxas’ offer. “What I said generally was, no matter how sweet an offer is, it’s the heart that ultimately decides what’s best,” she said.
Even some senators made reference to AlDub in their media interviews yesterday regarding Poe.
Acting Senate minority leader Vicente Sotto III expressed elation that the popular TV segment has caught the interest of some of his colleagues.
Sotto is part of the trio of Tito, Vic and Joey of Eat Bulaga.
Asked if she had already made up her mind on the vice presidency issue, Poe quoted the statements of Lola Nidora, the character of comedian Wally Bayola. “Sa tamang panahon (at the right time),” Poe said, referring to her reply to Roxas during their meeting.
“Alam mo, noong nagkaroon siya ng interview, hindi ba may mga nabanggit din siya na mga Yaya Dub na mga analogies hindi ba? So, yung tamang panahon lamang, dahil ayaw naman natin na mauwi tayo kay Frankie,” Poe added, referring to the role of comedian Jose Manolo, who as Frankie Arinoli is being pitted against Richards in the kalyeserye.
Poe confirmed that Roxas went to her house in Greenhills, San Juan and discussed their plans for the 2016 presidential elections over dinner last Sunday. Poe said Roxas personally asked her if she can be his vice president.
Sen. Francis Escudero, for his part, said he would respect whatever decision Poe makes.
But instead of Yaya Dub, Escudero took a line from Aiza Seguerra’s song, “Pagdating ng panahon.” 


Although Roxas admitted that the “talks” between him and Poe remain “fluid,” he said he was happy about how the meeting turned out.
“Well, sa akin masaya ako,” Roxas said. “It remains fluid, but what’s good about it is we have good intentions. So we have something to look forward to in these discussions,” he said.
Roxas said his meeting with Poe and her husband Niel Llamanzares lasted for a few hours and Escudero, the rumored vice president of Poe, was not part of it.
The DILG secretary said he has no idea about the reports that Poe was given until Sept. 14 to decide.
Poe, meanwhile, said she would understand if Roxas won’t wait very long for her decision.
The meeting between Roxas and Poe also came after President Aquino made public his sentiment last week that it would be up to Roxas to again try to convince Poe to be his running mate. She also stressed that while Escudero is a close friend, she doesn’t have to tell him her every move.

Ate Vi not interested

In Batangas, Gov. Vilma Santos-Recto reiterated she is not interested in running for vice president and that she has not received any formal offer to be Roxas’ running mate.
“No formal talks. Nababasa ko lang yan at napapanood (I just read about it). But no plans for that position, no ambition and not interested.  I thank all those who are considering me, if there are any.  But no formal talks,” she said in a text message. 
She said she is more inclined to run again for mayor or for congresswoman to represent the newly approved lone district of Lipa City.
Recto was Lipa mayor for nine years before becoming governor of the province.
“May consider Congress but nothing final yet.  I like serving the people of Batangas… 18 years din akong pinagkatiwalaan (they trusted me for 18 years)! Salamat!” she added.
On rumors that her son Luis Manzano was eyeing the mayoralty post, Recto said she thinks he is still not yet ready for such responsibility.
“It’s his decision, but I won’t let him get into something he’s not prepared for,” she said in Filipino.
With Poe seen close to reaching a decision on a possible bid for the presidency, she is reportedly getting advice from all the power players in Philippine politics, including former President and now Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada.
Poe confirmed that she met with Estrada over dinner recently and that they discussed several issues, including her plans for 2016.
According to Poe, she has not been able to meet Estrada lately because of their busy schedules and she wanted to see him as a friend of her father, the late actor Fernando Poe Jr., and also as her godfather.
“We get together. Recently we don’t get together as often. But of course the reports are coming out asking if I will run or not. We had a friendly chat. Of course, he was a friend of my dad and he is my godfather,” Poe said.
Poe said that she was given a piece of advice by Estrada during that meeting, but declined to disclose this.
In his previous interviews, Estrada said that he was torn between supporting Poe and Vice President Jejomar Binay because of his links to both.
Binay is Estrada’s political ally and fellow head of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), which was created for the 2013 senatorial elections.
Poe, on the other hand, has known Estrada since she was a child because her father and the former president were close friends, both being from show business.
Estrada’s seeming reluctance to support the Vice President was further highlighted when he did not attend the launch of UNA as a political party last July 1.
His son, Sen. Joseph Victor Ejercito, has also publicly aired his support for Poe as a presidential candidate.
Over the past few months, Poe has met with President Aquino and another former president, Fidel Ramos. – Cecille Suerte Felipe, Arnell Ozaeta
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