The one not dirtied by mud

New York -- 2016 is 31 months away. Immediately after 2013 a clearing operation was made and continuous to be so up to today. Dismantled in the process, depending on one's political affiliation, is the noted "opposition's" Three Kings save for one who was tentatively been sidelined. It would have been attack season for the Vice President immediately after 2013 as some operatives have intimated but was tentatively set aside because of the PDAF which got Revilla, Estrada and Enrile on the deck. Binay would have been a tactical delay because of the easy victory of Nancy. Besides the VP expressed his total and continuing support to the Chief so operators had to backed out, for a while.

New York -- 2016 is 31 months away.  Immediately after 2013 a clearing operation was made and continuous to be so up to today. Dismantled in the process, depending on one's political affiliation, is the noted "opposition's" Three Kings save  for one who was tentatively been sidelined.  It would have been attack season for the Vice President immediately after 2013 as some operatives have intimated but was tentatively set aside because of the PDAF which got Revilla, Estrada and Enrile on the deck.  Binay would have been a tactical delay because of the easy victory of Nancy. Besides the VP expressed his total and continuing support to the Chief so operators had to backed out, for a while.

Revilla is the president of Lakas-NUCD and has consolidated Cavite post 2013 with the victory of his son as vice governor and his ticket led by Gov.  Remulla.  Estrada of PMAP was not a candidate but the victory of JV Ejercito, despite so-called tinkering of votes, showed that the Estrada base vote was strong.  Manila, the capital city will be a plus to an Estrada base depending on Erap's performance.  Enrile to some, may be a fading glory but one can't discount a political bounce as his political career has been a story of highs and lows, never a wilderness haunt for the old warrior.

LP seems to be also in disarray since-two of the names being bruited about for 2016 are somehow muddied in the process: Drilon and Roxas.   A third name being mentioned is the neophyte Senator, Grace Poe, but then again she is not yet LP and somehow closer to another Senator than the LPs.

Then there is the much awaited candidacy of BBM who was first included in the PDAF list with Revilla, Estrada and Enrile.  They realized he was not yet a senator so his name disappeared only to reappear again under a different audit period. The time for BBM to run is 2016 with 65% of voters within the age bracket of 35-18 years old. Demographics and psychographics are in his favor.

With all the mud being thrown from PDAF, DAP, Malampaya and other alphabet soup of pork, who will have the advantage going to 2016? A colleague said that VP looks "clean" compared to those muddied by pork because at least he had felt projects in Makati and sister cities nationwide. He also works and delivers on his commitment with razor sharp focus and does not alienate people.  The VP was able to test key strategies with the Nancy run too.  He is therefore on track save for his measured capacity after a heavy bombardment of negatives in this season of pork. Age is a factor that will work against the VP and his closeness with the Aquinos. Talks of coups won't prosper because of VP and some yellowish army are taunting that only BSA3 can do reform thumbing down the VP.  The yellows would not want the VP to flex his muscles, would they? Ahh, but that has always been the hubris of the yellow supremes.

So, who would be the Black Swan? In a forum last 4 October with Tony Gatmaitan, MVP, the businessman with a Midas touch, was mentioned.  Problem with that is MVP is into highly regulated utilities from electricity to water to telcos.  And I am not even naming the rest of his business empire since the more voters may tune out: a rich guy running for public office.  But if he will be serious with so called float, he may want to disengage in those businesses or do pricing reforms to get his base working for him.  MVP has tremendous natural base by the number of companies he has under his belt. Imagine harnessing these and building a grassroots base that bypasses the local ward leaders.  that would change politics.

I would venture further.  Anyone not muddied by pork will have the people's support in 2016.  Gibo Teodoro is a promising proposition. He has been in the wilderness too long but the wilderness gives peace to a fallen leader who still cures the bitterness of a political fight.  I hope he will rise soon like the Phoenix.  Another name is Manny Villar. He is back in his world, trying to recover lost ground in the Billionaires List of the country.  But why would he spend his money for someone else when he can very well launch his own candidacy without prostituting it via a pool of donors who controls the economy?  The brown taipan though has to learn how to use his vaunted cash to have a strategic campaign.

And there is still another in the sidelines who may just offer a clearer alternative.  But I will not name that person yet.  I guess looking for the white horse has been a wrong approach altogether.  Voters will have to decide early on what kind of a leader we will need.  Voters will have to hand picked the leader and work for victory not of the leader but of the common agenda they have for the next six years.  We do not need hypocrites or self righteous candidates who are all good in messaging but slow in action. What the pork mud has shown is that the longer a candidate for 2016 is in the political world, the less brilliant one's star is.  The more similar names, the worst our politics is. Not preparing for the Presidency, we get a cabal of operators ruining our institutions. With the anger of the voters and the damaging picture we are getting from the striptease of pork and the messy governance we have, 2016 is becoming important for the life of our country and the future of the Filipinos.

Who is not dirtied by mud? Who did not personally benefitted from-the largesse, from being in office for years and hard earned taxpayer's money or even the rents provided? The longer the pork striptease, the better for political reform.  The non implementation of reform and the more doublespeak, the better for a people's candidate to spring forth from the bowels of darkness and fires of anger.

Finally, the more Valte, Carandang and Lacierda speak, the better for a people's candidate. So bring it on!

 

Published in Manila Times, October 14, 2013: http://manilatimes.net/the-one-not-dirtied-by-mud/44883/

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About the Author
Malou Tiqiua is the Founder/General Manager of PUBLiCUS Asia Inc. A noted political management expert in the Philippines and Asia, she brings over 20 years of professional experience in public, private and the academe combined. Author of the comprehensive book on electoral campaigns in the Philippines, "Campaign Politics", Malou is a graduate of the University of the Philippines with a Political Science degree and a Master of Public Administration. She completed her second master's degree (MA in Political Management) from the Graduate School of Political Management, George Washington University.
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