Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Filipinos Love Cozying Up to Politicians

I'm reminded of this every time I unfriend someone who seems to have forgotten his/her principles. The most recent case is a college friend. But then again, I keep on finding out that the former University of San Carlos Department of Sociology and Anthropology (now the Department of Anthropology, Sociology, and History) just keeps on churning out graduates who are either die-hard Dutertards or Marcos loyalists, or both. Which is a shame, really. Especially now that they're producing history graduates too. How can you study (or teach) history (or sociology/anthropology) and not know what the Marcoses did to the country? 

The latest I've unfriended is someone who took up sociology, like me, and who even supported Leni Robredo -- like me.

But lately this person had been sharing posts of some members of the Marcos family because, apparently, he is supporting -- and working with, (hence the cozying up) -- Ace Durano now. The same Ace Durano who was convicted of graft by the Sandiganbayan in 2008 when he served as Secretary of Tourism under Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. Durano pledged his support for Bongbong Marcos in the 2022 elections.

It's not surprising that the academic department that I was a part of in college should produce DDS and Marcos loyalists. As early as 2016 I unfriended one of my best friends -- also a sociology major (lol) -- when I found out that she was campaigning for Bongbong for vice president. I tried to talk her out of it, tried to reason with her, but all my attempts fell on deaf ears. So what else can you do?

There are two professors who still teach there, both I once respected and looked up to. But one invited Imelda Marcos to an exhibit and then, many years later, proudly posted a pic here on FB that he captioned as having a "friendly tête-à-tête" with Irene Marcos. The other professor posted a pic with Rodrigo Duterte, and was a staunch defender of the ABS-CBN closure and the cases against Rappler.

Sometimes I think that maybe there's something wrong with ME. Maybe the stuff I learned while taking those sociology and anthropology classes (and history classes) had an unintended effect on me. I probably SHOULD BE a DDS and a Marcos loyalist right now. Maybe I SHOULD BE cozying up to politicians. Maybe I misunderstood those books that I read years ago?

I remember that one of those two professors, when he was chair of the department years ago, had a rant that never failed to make me laugh whenever one of the sociology or anthropology majors asked him to sign their transfer papers. There was a time when the department was hemorrhaging students, because they were shifting to hotel and restaurant management.

He would ask the students, "Mag unsa man mo didto, mag-pilo og habol ug punda?"

Years ago, I got a kick every time I heard that rant from him. 


Bahala nalang tig-pilo og habol oi basta dili lang DDS ug pro-Marcos. 😂

The Audacity

The audacity of these scumbags fighting over the nation's coffers in the guise of "love of country" makes my skin crawl.

In the North you have the Marcoses who, for many years, plundered "their" land amid the Ilocanos' indifference (or worse, amid their idolatry), and in the South you have the Dutertes who made Davao City their fiefdom and ruled unchallenged for decades (amid the Davaoeños' idolatry, of course). 

We lost our chance to elect a Leni Robredo, just like we lost our chance years ago to have a Jesse Robredo as commander in chief when he died in that plane crash. Power-hungry Mar Roxas subsequently hijacked the Liberal Party and made it the most-hated political party in the Philippines, eventually giving rise to the landslide win of Rodrigo Duterte. Likewise, it was Mar who ensured the demise of the Otso Diretso senatorial slate in 2019; everything he touches dies. Makes you wonder if it was the Roxas touch that finally gave PNoy his illness that did him in three years ago.

In a perfect world, we'd all try to convince Leni to run for president again, with Risa Hontiveros as her running mate. We'd vote for Chel Diokno and Neri Colmenares and Leila de Lima for the Senate. We'd try to convince Vico Sotto to run for a national post.

Instead we have the Marcoses and the Dutertes squabbling among themselves, with Jinggoy Estrada, Bong Revilla, Bong Go, Bato de la Rosa, Robin Padilla, Cynthia Villar, and Grace Poe in the Senate waiting to see who gets the upper hand. You have the same army of balimbings and leeches in Congress, led by Martin Romualdez and Sandro Marcos. 

In Cebu City you have Mike Rama; in Cebu Province you have Gwen Garcia. The Cebuanos could've decisively said never again to those two, but decided instead that they wanted more of the same. Back home, in Talisay City, my fellow Talisaynons seem to have developed Stockholm Syndrome -- they love themselves the Gullases, for better or for worse. Mostly for worse. 😂

What can I say? Reading and writing about Philippine politics at past 10 p.m. on a Sunday here in Mexico City is the best way to prepare for another brutal workweek. Lol