Monday, May 13, 2013

Leadership By Example (Last Part)

In a few hours, the polling stations will open. The public will cast their votes, and a weary nation, will at last see their lives return to normal. This is the last leg of the elections and we, as masters of our fate have options to pick the ones who will serve our interests.

I was supposed to pick 12 senators, with JV Ejercito being the tenth. But a last minute revelation of a colleague who lives in San Juan changed my decision. 

Now down with 11 handpicked candidates to carry on my social vision, I present the remaining five to complete my line up. It is my sincere wish that both you and I share the same bets. 

7.  Hagedorn, Edward

A mere glance of his photo and Hagedorn can be swiftly associated with local villains. The ones you see forcing leading ladies (often starlets) to bend over (with their undies down) and hitting even his henchmen with a gun.

But Hagedorn is Hagedorn, and no matter what your perception is, this scruffy guy has and will always be a protector of Mother Earth.

8.  Casino, Teddy

Right or Left, Casino will always be their commie bastard. A social activist all his life, Teddy has swayed more people in the parliament of streets, than in the ballots or in people's homes. A puppeteer in the shadows, his vast network of faceless ideologues are even feared by the US Embassy staff. He has called every sitting President "tuta," and any civil disobedience is a bust without him as the guest speaker. But no matter his reputation, Labor Day rallies and State of the Nation Addresses are boring without newsmakers citing him a soundbite.

So what's my reason for voting for Teddy?

Simple. In a vibrant democracy, everyone should be represented. Even the militant ones that are associated with this candidate. I don't know what laws he will sponsor, or what antics he'll amuse/annoy the public. But one thing holds true. Casino speaks for the laborers, wage earners, and peasants.

9.  Cayetano, Alan Peter

Alan Peter Cayetano is the kind of lawmaker you do not want to cross. First, he does his homework well. His cross-examinations can squeeze the truth out of the most hardened hostile witness. Second, he doesn't mind picking fights with colleagues if it means exposing what is rigged, anomalous, or downright deceptive. Third and last, he seem to be a principled statesman - like his father - who wants nothing but the best for the country.

Despite his untarnished reputation and good track record at the Senate, the very reason he gets my vote is because of Pia Cayetano. Her charm, social media presence and the causes she stood for had virtually rubbed off her brother.

10.  Madrigal, Jamby

There is this photo I saw on a newspaper many years ago. It was Jamby and Tito Guingona, drenched and shivering while being interviewed by the press. Jamby was defiant. I am sure it's the first time she was hosed during a rally. And she was already a senator back then.

I would never forget the image, and for a time, she encapsulates what an iron lady is. I may refer to her - in jest - as a lesbian, a woman with balls, and even if she performs poorly on surveys, the photo will always be a reminder of her defense of good governance. 

11. Gordon, Dick 

Dick Gordon wields a sharp tongue, and all throughout the campaign season, he is the most vocal critic of the administration. A keen observer however, cannot put the blame on him. A media casualty from the last presidential elections, favorable news seem elusive to this public servant. For all I know, after his usefulness has expired, he has been written off; his accomplishments mothballed into the recesses of the nation's memory.

But I remember. He was the brains behind Wow Philippines. He transformed Subic from an abandoned outpost into a world-class free-trade zone, and as a hardworking administrator who delivers, the laws he would author will be a boon to the economy.

Richard Gordon maybe the last on my list, and the only UNA on my ballot. But he gets my support, now and in the years to come.

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