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This is the blog of Ian Rosales Casocot. Filipino writer. Sometime academic. Former backpacker. Twink bait. Hamster lover.

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

entry arrow11:42 AM | Some Fast Thoughts for the Morning After

"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up governed by your inferiors."
~ Plato

As of lunch time today, Senator Noynoy Aquino appears to be winning. I didn't vote for him, but I still say "Not bad." Better him than a Villar presidency. What most of us could not fathom, however, is how close former President Joseph Estrada has come close to winning, again. And to study the list of who could be our next batch of Senators, we encounter again many names that are more head-scratching. Marcos? Lapid? Revilla? Sotto? Why, why? To quote blogger historian Ari Ngaseo, "As much as I would like to idealize them, the Filipino masses always make the most godawful choices, judging by the election results." Then there is Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay who seems to be on the threshold of getting the post of second-in-command. Nobody saw that coming at all. Many of my friends in the Capital seem bothered immensely by this, but they know Manila politics more and we in Dumaguete are much too far away to understand the nuances of their dislike. I voted for Mar Roxas though, and I honestly thought he would win. But now, with him struggling to edge past Binay, I seriously think that maybe marrying Korina Sanchez was a bad political move. That seemed to be the only obvious, albeit un-talked about, reason. For the past weeks, everywhere I go, and from people I meet, there seemed to be only this: an unhindered dislike for the former TV journalist, with some comments comparing her to the high-minded ways of Imelda Marcos, who is now, by the way, a member of Congress (together with Manny Pacquiao and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo -- what a fun circus this is). I don't know exactly the specifics for how this reputation originated; I've met Mar and Korina once, and they were extremely nice to me. Still...

These are my thought balloons plastered in Facebook as Election Day wore on: "It took me three freaking hours to vote. But I'm not complaining. At least I voted." "At least Miguel Syjuco kept me company. I read two chapters of IIustrado while I waited for my turn to vote." "Burly man -- dark as earth and looking like a bulldog -- was a typhoon of booming noise and unnecessary complaints in Precinct 0161A in Lo-oc. Gah." "I actually [feel] violated by the very long wait and the odorous press of the bodies of exasperated people." "I could only vote for three city councilors: the rest were meh. They were either political dinosaurs I wanted retired or complete unknowns who have no known track record of service. One wishes for wannabe politicians who make a point of working for the city before an election comes along." "When I saw the word 'Congratulations!' it seemed like the sweetest word ever in the world." "Must shower now, or eat. Whichever comes first."

And then later, as Election Day ended and partial results were being announced everywhere: "I just woke up from a most tiring day. I should have waited till this time [5 pm] to vote, I would have avoided the stress. Because as far as COMELEC goes, the early bird does not always get the worm. It gets the heat and the sweat of exasperated people." "I'm amused over how Villar got Pichay-ed." "Manny Pacquiao, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, and Imelda Marcos in Congress. 'Nuff said." "Villanueva and De los Reyes don't make the cut. Does that mean they were listening to God wrong?"

My choices for the country's top posts didn't make the cut either. But right now, at least my choice for Dumaguete City mayor won. For a while there, I thought businessman Chiquiting Sagarbarria wouldn't, and the margin in the official count is quite small at 55 votes. Fifty-five votes! Which just goes to show that every vote does count. Still, I'm sad for Myrish Cadapan-Antonio, though, who lost the vice-mayoralty vote to Alan Cordova, an Independent candidate who seemed to have charmed many of the people I know -- these are educated people who were Myrish's supporters when she ran and won as the #1 city councilor a few years ago. I wonder what happened there? I know many of my friends who were gunning for a Woodrow Maquiling win. Still, I'm happy that Jocelyn Limkaichong won the congressional seat for the First District of Negros Oriental, thus further burying into political irrelevance the much-hated Paras dynasty. I voted for George Arnaiz as my Second District representative -- but it was mostly because there was no other viable choice. Same for the governorship, which perennial Gov. Emilio Macias II seem on the edge of getting again. (He was already governor when I was in grade school. And I would have wanted new blood to keep the race interesting -- but I just could not bring myself to vote for Petit Baldado.) And I would have wanted former Bayawan City Mayor German Saraña to win the vice-governorship. His track record as mayor for my hometown is sterling -- but I guess he did not exactly lead a good campaign. Nobody knew about him even until Election Day. It looks like former Dumaguete Mayor Tuting Perdices is winning that one.

So now it's time for the City to start working. And the new leaders are...

For Dumaguete Mayor:
Manuel Sagarbarria (NPC) - 20,555
Woodrow Maquiling (LP) - 20,504

For Dumaguete Vice Mayor:
Alan Cordova (Ind). 20,198
Myrish Cadapan-Antonio (LP) - 14,724

Dumaguete City Councilors:
Antonio Remollo (LP)
Joe Ken Arbas (LP)
Frank Esmeña (LP)
Erwin Macias (NPC)
Nilo Sayson (LP)
Jayvee Imbo (NPC)
Manny Arbon (LP)
Espiridion Catan (NPC)
Noel de Jesus (NPC)
Dan Leon (Lakas)

And I look at the list of City Dads, and is happy to note that many of the old fogeys have been retired. Thank God.

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