Archive for noynoy aquino

Noynoy Aquino Did Not Become A Hostaged President

Posted in Governance, Politics and Politicians with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 28, 2010 by Ruffy Biazon

Politics is a realm that neither political analysts nor fortune tellers can accurately predict the outcome. The reality is that the outcomes are determined by the interests of the politicians which they hold dearly to themselves as a poker player would his cards. Anlaysts can only do an educated speculation, fortune tellers can only do blind guesses.

Politicians’ interests and game plans may change as the seasons do, depending on the situations during a particular time, or the convenience at that moment. That makes them unpredictable, which is sometimes a necessity in the cut-throat world that they move around in.

I am happy to admit that one analysis I made while in the thick of the campaign of the last national and local elections did not materialize into reality. Yes, I’m happy that it did not materialize. That analysis, which I posted in my blog ( Noynoy Aquino Could Be a Hostaged President ), pictured a scenario where both chambers of the Philippine Congress are dominated by opponents of Aquino, with Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo heading the House of Representatives and Manny Villar leading the Senate.

The basis of that analysis is the fact that both politicians had a good number of allies (at that time, at least) that should have been enough for them to take hold of the helm in their respective chambers. That, combined with the usual expectation for politicians of such stature to crave for the post of top banana and the craving to get back at political opponents, served as the foundation of the analysis.

But to my surprise, neither seemed to have exerted effort not exhibited the desire to make life difficult for the new president. Perhaps the overwhelming mandate and the people’s high trust and confidence in President Aquino was enough to dissuade them. Or they lost their allies to political expediency, each of them characteristically looking out for their own interests. Or, uncharacteristically for politicians, they both lost the desire for power and the need to get back at their rival.

I am thankful to Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and Sen. Manny Villar for not acting like typical traditional politicians. Ordinarily, one would expect a typical trapo to use the situation to get back at the opponent who defeated him or do everything to use the position to protect herself.

Whatever it is, I am just glad that President Noynoy Aquino enjoys the goodwill and support of both chambers. Both Houses have super majorities that support the President, led by personalities who have expressed cooperation, if not complete support, to the new administration.

Indeed, President Aquino is a blessed man. Not just because he won the Presidency in a relatively easy manner (considering that he decided to run just 5 months before the campaign began), but because as he begins his term of office, he has a high trust rating from his constituency and the support of the two chambers of Congress.

I pray that those around him will not waste this golden opportunity for the Philippines to be great again.

It’s Everybody’s Concern

Posted in Governance, Philippines and the Filipinos, Politics and Politicians with tags , , , , , on July 26, 2010 by Ruffy Biazon

It’s turning out to be one of the most awaited events of the year. Media networks are all geared up for their coverage, the internet is buzzing with chatter about what might and might not happen, and people are eagerly anticipating what’s in store for them in the coming years.

Some attendees probably prepared their wardrobe weeks in advance, more concerned with what they will wear to the occasion rather than the substance of the proceedings. Indeed, the event has been likened to a movie industry awards night, with reporters and photographers waiting along the sidelines of the red carpet jostling to throw the question “Who are you wearing?” (a question about who designed the outfit) and capture a photo worthy of a spread in the papers.

Even the ordinary Filipino seems to be more interested, compared to years past. I was surprised to read some Twitter messages from students and working people alike expressing their disappointment that a holiday was not declared making it impossible for them to watch the event. Quite unlike previously when either the people were indifferent or even questioned why a holiday had to be declared.

I remember a story told to me years back by one of my dad’s staff. She was rushing to work when a friend asked her why she had to go to the office even if a holiday was declared. My dad’s staff said, “I’m going to the SONA”. The friend said, “Ok, I’ll go with you”. She said, “I’m sorry you can’t. It’s by invitation only.” The friend, flabbergasted, said, “By invitation only? What kind of sauna is that?”

There was a time when people could care little what the SONA was all about, content with only reading about it in the papers the following day. Not only when reports began to give extra focus on who wore what made by whom did the masa take enough interest in news about the SONA, perhaps due to the Filipinos’ fondness of celebrities.

But now, with the overwhelming confidence in President Aquino’s leadership, it seems that the people’s interest in what he has to say about the country’s state and what he intends to do about stems from genuine concern.

Technology has also made it easier to monitor the SONA, with social networks in the internet serving as public information tools. Increased accessibility through wireless broadband and live streaming has given those with access to those facilities the ability to view the proceedings live over the internet. Of course, those who are still dreaming of such connectivity have the old reliable transistor radio to rely on.

The SONAs of the past president has always been a show and tell spectacle, not unlike those presented by celebrity storytellers to kindergarten students. Whether they just wanted to show their powerpoint skills or they thought that the people could be mesmerized by the show, it basically led people to take the SONA as just an entertaining event rather than a government’s presentation of what is in store for them.

But it seems with the new President’s first SONA, the people genuinely want to hear what he plans to do for the country. With the overwhelming and unquestionable mandate that he has, much is now demanded from him.

After listening to the SONA, the people should not be left with a feeling of having just been treated to an interesting report from the President. More than just having their eyes opened to anomalies of the previous administration and presented with a smart program of government, the SONA should give the people a feeling of ownership of the challenges faced by President Aquino. The fight for the country’s future is not the President’s alone. It is a shared responsibility between all who would like to see this country move forward.

Justice in Agrarian Reform Includes Going After Illegal Conversions of Agrarian Land to Residential Subdivisions

Posted in Governance with tags , , , , on March 22, 2010 by Ruffy Biazon

It is worrisome to hear stalwarts of a rival political party express their eagerness to see a rushed distribution of Hacienda Luisita, particularly because of the incidence of illegal conversions of CARP farmlands into residential subdivisions such as the one discovered in Iloilo where large tracts of irrigated farm lands were alleged to be anomalously converted into a residential subdivision owned by a presidential candidate.

Hacienda Luisita is a prime piece of real estate, very much attractive to developers of commercial and residential projects. It is not surprising for developers to have a lustful eye on the property, considering the value that it has and the potential for development.

While members of some political parties expressed their concern about the Hacienda Luisita not being subject to land reform under an Aquino administration, there is also a serious basis to be concerned about illegal land conversions under and administration led by a real estate developer who has been linked to activities which have undermined the agrarian reform program.

The next administration should not only promote genuine agrarian reform, it should also be committed to protect the gains of agrarian reform and go against greedy land developers and run after those who have bamboozled farmer beneficiaries into selling their rights and illegally convert agrarian land to commercial and residential projects.

Contrary to what others seem to believe, the pursuit of justice in agrarian reform does not end with the distribution of Hacienda Luisita. It includes the prosecution of those who have been engaged in illegal conversion and the prevention of such schemes which undermine the agrarian reform program.

Noynoy Aquino Could Be A Hostaged President

Posted in Philippines and the Filipinos, Politics and Politicians with tags , , , , on March 19, 2010 by Ruffy Biazon

The campaign for national candidates is almost halfway through as we near the start of the campaign for local positions. At this time, there is an indication of how the results will turn out, although the remaining half of the campaign period may still see changes in the ratings of candidates. Therefore, it is important that during this time, an assessment of the candidates’ ratings and political parties’ campaign strategies and direction is in order.

Focusing on my own party, the Liberal Party, both our presidential and vice presidential candidates have consistently topped the surveys ever since they first announced their intentions to run for the posts they’re now candidates for.

In the Pulse Asia survey done from Feb.21 to 25, Senator Mar Roxas’ lead over his rival is comfortable, and it seems that the 16 percentage point spread is too big for the other candidates to have a real chance of catching up with in the remaining days of the campaign period. Senator Noynoy Aquino led Villar with a 36% versus 29% margin. After months of spending hundreds of millions (possibly even more than a billion pesos) in the past several months trying to catch up, Senator Villar is still second place with only a month and a half remaining. It seems that only a major blunder will make people change their minds about who to support for president in the coming elections.

With the prospect of an Aquino-Roxas victory more real than imagined, it becomes necessary now to do a post-election scenario analysis of what awaits an Aquino-Roxas administration. Of course, the significant scenario is one that will pertain to the Legislative branch of government, because the plans and programs of the president can only push through if there is support from the Congress.

Let me emphasize that this is a worst-case scenario analysis. Of course, it may turn out differently, but one never really makes plans using the best case scenario. In order to be effective and relevant, you always consider the prospect of the worst situation you can face.

With this in mind, I would venture to say that the House of Representatives seems to most likely become an Arroyo stronghold. With Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo herself running for a seat in the House, cabinet members seeking both congressional and party list seats, many more incumbent pro-administration congressmen seeking reelection, it stands to reason that the future Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has a very good chance of getting the Speakership of the House of Representatives at the maximum, or come up with a major bloc in the lower chamber, big enough to be a significant threat to launch an impeachment which requires only a third of the House membership.

That significant bloc will also have a very strong influence in how legislation will pass or not pass in the lower chamber. It will be an excruciating and tedious effort to get bills through the legislative mill in the House.

An Aquino-Roxas electoral victory will only mean that Senators Villar and Legarda will go back as members of the Philippine Senate. It is therefore necessary to play out the scenario in the upper chamber, since under the bicameral system of government, legislation is passed by both chambers before it become law.
In the senate, there are twelve senators who are now in their mid-term, and they are either up for re-election or at the end of their term in 2013 (with the exception of Sen. Noynoy Aquino, who we are assuming to have been elected president in this scenario):

1. Sen. Miguel Zubiri
2. Sen. Edegardo Angara
3. Sen. Joker Arroyo
4. Sen. Alan Cayetano
5. Sen. Francsis Escudero
6. Sen. Gregorio Honasan
7. Sen. Panfilo Lacson
8. Sen. Francis Pangilinan
9. Sen. Antonio Trillanes
10. Sen. Manny Villar
11. Sen. Loren Legarda

Using the Pulse Asia survey referred to earlier, the possible winners in the 2010 elections are:

1. Sen. Bong Revilla
2. Sen. Jinggoy Estrada
3. Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago
4. Sen. Pia Cayetano
5. Former Sen. Franklin Drilon
6. Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile
7. Former Sen. Tito Sotto
8. Former Sen. Ralph Recto
9. Former Sen. Serge Osmeña
10. Cong. Bong Bong Marcos
11. Sen. Lito Lapid
12. Cong. TG Guingona
13. Jose De Venecia III
14. Cong. Ruffy Biazon

Statistically, Cong. Marcos is ranked 9-12, Sen.. Lapid is 9-14, Cong. Guingona is 10-14, Mr. De Venecia is 11-15 and Cong. Biazon is 11-16.

Based on the senators serving their mid-term and the possible result of the 2010 senatorial elections, the composition and alignment of members of the Senate of the 15th Congress may be analyzed. The outcome in the Senate will also have a very significant effect on the success of the Aquino presidency.

From the foregoing information, a possible composition of the Senate may be drawn:

1. Sen. Miguel Zubiri
2. Sen. Edegardo Angara
3. Sen. Joker Arroyo
4. Sen. Alan Cayetano
5. Sen. Francsis Escudero
6. Sen. Gregorio Honasan
7. Sen. Panfilo Lacson
8. Sen. Francis Pangilinan
9. Sen. Antonio Trillanes
10. Sen. Manny Villar
11. Sen. Loren Legarda
12. Sen. Bong Revilla
13. Sen. Jinggoy Estrada
14. Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago
15. Sen. Pia Cayetano
16. Former Sen. Franklin Drilon
17. Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile
18. Former Sen. Tito Sotto
19. Former Sen. Ralph Recto
20. Former Sen. Serge Osmeña
21. Cong. Bong Bong Marcos
22. Sen. Lito Lapid
23. Cong. TG Guingona
24. (vacancy left by Sen. Aquino, assuming he’s elected president)

Owing to the statistical tie in the survey, Mr. De Venecia and Cong. Biazon may land in the 12th spot.

From the above list, the alignment of senators may also be drawn, based on who will support an Aquino presidency:

Pro-Aquino:
1. Sen. Francis Escudero
2. Sen. Panfilo Lacson
3. Sen. Francis Pangilinan
4. Sen. Franklin Drilon
5. Sen. Ralph Recto
6. Sen. Serge Osmeña
7. Sen. TG Guingona / Sen. Ruffy Biazon (if either of them gets in )

Pro-Villar:
1. Sen. Manny Villar
2. Sen. Loren Legarda
3. Sen. Joker Arroyo
4. Sen. Alan Cayetano
5. Sen. Pia Cayetano
6. Sen. Gregorio Honasan
7. Sen. Antonio Trillanes
8. Sen. Ramon Revilla
9. Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago
10. Sen. Bong-Bong Marcos

Unknown:
1. Sen. Miguel Zubiri
2. Sen. Edgardo Angara
3. Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile
4. Sen. Tito Sotto
5. Sen. Lito Lapid
6. Sen. Jinggoy Estrada
7. Sen. Joey De Venecia (if he gets in )

These projected alignments are based on party affiliation, alliances during the campaign, alignments during issue-discussions and other observed nuances.

Based on this projected alignments, it would appear that Sen. Villar will have a bigger bloc ready to support a bid for the Senate presidency. With a bloc composed of 10 senators who are members of his party, vocal supporters or known sympathizers, Sen. Villar will only need three more to gain the majority in the Senate and propel him to the Senate presidency.

Among the seven unknowns, if Joey De Venecia gets in (and both Cong, Guingona and Cong. Biazon are out), he will not make a difference if he joins the pro-Aquino side since he would have just dislodged either Cong. Guingona or Cong. Biazon who are sure to be with Aquino, but there is a possibility that he will join the Villar side due to the prospect of being with the majority in the Senate and get a chance at choice committees. With De Venecia, Aquino stands to either just maintain 7 allies or be reduced to 6, unlike Guingona and Biazon who are sure to stay with Aquino.

There is basis to believe that Sen. Enrile and Sen. Estrada will side with the pro-Aquino bloc, especially since both have been vocal against Sen. Villar during the campaign. That would give the pro-Aquino bloc 9 senators at best.

The crucial question is where will the Arroyo allies in the Senate, Sen. Zubiri and Sen, Lapid, go? It is highly unlikely that Arroyo will ask them to side with the pro-Aquino camp. The only remaining option is to go the other way and ensure that they get good posts in the new Senate while at the same time not digress from the interest of their party leader.

Such a move would then give Sen. Villar a solid 12 votes, with Sen. Angara and Sen. Sotto up for the grabs. As to where they will go, I will not venture to proceed with an analysis and prediction.

In conclusion, there is a possibility that the relationship between the 15th Congress and an Aquino presidency might be a hostile relationship at worst or a difficult one at best. Noynoy Aquino could be held hostage by an Arroyo House Speakership and a Villar Senate Presidency.

Experience has taught us that the dynamics in the legislature sometimes transcend those of national and even party interests. That when the individual perks and coveted positions are at stake, the decision on who to side with are made with the individual interests in primary consideration.

It is therefore imperative that the supporters of Noynoy Aquino, who have the desire to see him succeed as president, should give equal and committed support to his senatorial candidates in order to ensure that he has enough allies in the legislature to support his plans and programs. The senatorial elections must not only be an afterthought, but it should be considered a crucial part of the strategic plan in gaining leadership of this country and installing a government that will be able to work without the difficulties of an uncooperative legislature.

NP Candidate Has Been Immersed Too Much in Showbiz, He’s Resorting to Sowing Intrigue Rather than Dealing With Real Issues

Posted in Politics and Politicians with tags , , , , on February 17, 2010 by Ruffy Biazon

One of Nacionalista Party’s candidates, a lawyer, has been immersed too much in show business that he’s taken the role of “intrigero” by taking potshots at the Liberal Party’s presidential candidate Noynoy Aquino whom he accuses as being plagued by the “virus of distrust” based on rumors that Aquino centralized the management of his campaign funds and designated his sisters to handle it (read it here).

Apparently lacking substantial issues to discuss, the lawyer is using the issue to portray Aquino as someone incapable of managing the country. The matter of how a candidate manages his campaign finances is not really one that should be of consequence with regard to capability to run the country. Any politician knows that campaign finance management are purely a candidate’s discretion especially that a candidate has to make sure that every centavo that he gathers for his campaign goes to the right expenditure.

The handling of such funds require the highest level of trust, especially at a time when opportunists, swindlers and other characters hover around candidates hoping to get a piece of the campaign fund pie. Who the candidates trust in handling their finances during their campaigns should not be a point of concern. Management skills cannot be judged just on the basis of how a candidate handles his campaign funds.

It’s a pity that a Harvard educated lawyer running for the Senate chose to assume the role of “intrigero” instead of taking on issues of greater national concern such as the postponement of the peace process in Mindanao. We can only guess how his fellow Muslims and Mindanaoans think about choice of issues to discuss.

Evil Minds Using The Passing of President Cory for their Evil Political Schemes

Posted in Politics and Politicians with tags , , on August 4, 2009 by Ruffy Biazon

As the nation mourns the death of the Icon of Democracy, people with black souls are using the national tragedy to pursue their evil political schemes. I cannot imagine how callous and ruthless these people are, their sinister intentions prevailing over what should at least be a time to give honor and respect to the former president who gifted the nation with the restoration of democracy.

Even while the Filipino people show an outpouring of grief, these evil minds conceived a plan to sow intrigue through text messages meant to drive a wedge between President Cory’s son Nonoy and the Liberal Party.

I received a series of messages which began yesterday, August 3, starting with one coming from mobile number 0909-1452011 at 8:13PM saying “Milyun-milyon pa rin and nagmamahak k Tita Cory! Ipagpatuloy ang adhikain nla Ninoy & Cory. Noynoy 4 prez sa 2010! Pls pass.”

After a few minutes, at 8:20PM, I received another message this time from mobile number 0909-1452004 which said, “Millions troopd to the wake of 4mer Pres Cory! Very clear evidence f Noynoy’s support when he runs. Noynoy 4 Pres in 2010! Pls pass.”

Then at 8:30PM, a message was sent from mobile number 0909-1452013 which said, “Nakakalito naman itong abs cbn…anong pagkaka pareho ng pagkamatay ni Ninoy at ni Cory? C Ninoy, nabaril, c Cory, na cancer! Tama na pulitika, kakasawa na..”

The latest came in today, August 4 at 1:56PM from mobile number 0909-1452014 and it said, “If u like someone frm d Liberal Party, a mama’s boy, who’s neither a boy nor a girl or one who dated Korina why go for Mar, go for d Original go for Noynoy!!”

A closer look at the numbers will reveal that these messages are part of a black propaganda scheme since it is obvious that the messages came from a single source, considering that the mobile numbers come from one series:

0909-1452004, 0909-1452011, 0909-1452013 and 0909-1452014

Perhaps when the text brigade of these people was set up, they bought a whole batch of SIM cards which comprised of a whole series of numbers.

Although I also received a message from a number from a different series at 11:55AM of August 4. The message, from mobile number 0929-3655389 said, “Nakaka aliw panoorin ang confetti sa Makati ng dumaan ang karo ni Tita Cory! D Cory magic is alive!! Kaya mga kaibigan, ipagpatuloy ang Laban nila Ninoy & Cory…iboto natin si Noynoy sa pagka presidente..Pres Aquino again sa 2010!” The number may belong to another series, but it is quite evident that it was conceived by the same person/group from which the others came from.

Since SIM cards are easy to acquire in this country because no registration is required, it will be quite difficult to identify the person or persons who are behind this. But in instances like this, one may have an inkling of who may have the motive.

I can point to a couple of people who may benefit from a split in the Liberal Party or intrigue among its members. I will not venture into giving clues. I will just leave it to the readers to make their own conclusions.

But one thing I will say to the people who conceived and implemented this diabolical scheme…may you be welcomed in hell in the soonest possible time!