SO there, I'm supporting MAR Roxas for President of this crazy republic of ours in 2010. There isn't any other intelligent choice is there? (Sure there's also Manny Villar but he's still playing coy about his presidential ambitions. Don't be fooled, we hear his biography is currently in the works, despite his pronouncements that he isn't thinking of 2010 yet.) Besides my family, and the clan we belong to, have been Liberal Party supporters for the longest time.
(My mom and dad, for instance, were very active in the campaigns of MAR's father, the late Gerry Roxas, back in the day. Gerry Roxas was senator from 1963 until Ferdinand Marcos declared Martial Law in 1972, always a topnotcher in the elections. In 1965, Roxas ran as Vice President to Diosdado Macapagal's Presidential bid, and lost by less than 30,000 (!) votes to Fernando Lopez, the slimmest margin in Philippine electoral history. Btw, I had the privilege of interviewing former VP Lopez at the old Benpres building in Pasig sometime in 1989, when I was just starting my career as a journalist. )
To be fair, MAR may have not been in fighting form much during his helm as Trade and Industry Secretary (and sometimes he has selective memory about the people he meets), but I've seen him change and become more outspoken and palaban in his positions and statements, now that he is Senator. He performed extremely well during the ZTE-NBN deal hearings, asking very insightful questions. Also, perhaps with his background as an investment banker, MAR can place his bets on better economic policies and investment schemes for the Philippines. From the Sick Man of Asia, the Philippines has no way to go but up right? And yet under the Presidentita we've seen the country sinking further, and no amount of GDP figures can change that fact. That 7% GDP hasn't been translated to more jobs and higher wages for us has it?
With his family's decent background, I have no doubt that corruption will not taint MAR's tenure. I'm sure he's still earning lots from financial investments he's made before he became a politician that he doesn't have to go into el cheapo corrupt activities like you-know-who, just to sustain the lifestyle he's long been accustomed to. He's a smart chap, let's hope he picks only honest, competent, intelligent technocrats to be part of his Cabinet. (Neric Acosta for DENR Secretary for example.) There are a lot of qualified people out there just waiting for the right person to head this country before agreeing to serve the public.
Only thing that I (and many of MAR's supporters) are having a problem with is his, ehem, love life. Not the nicest girl in the world, and definitely very ambisyosa. Hon, those pearl earrings are just way too large!
But then MAR really doesn't have to get married does he? Maybe we should have a bachelor heading up the country for once so he can focus more on the job of governing the country instead of keeping his family and relatives happy. Besides, all marital alliances are for the purpose of perpetuating one's genes into the next generation, and MAR already has got that job done. A First Lady can just be an annoying distraction. Look what happened to Marcos. Besides, it's not like MAR is creating a precedent. Tita Cory was "single", a widow, when she assumed power in Malacañang.
Anyway, here's a clip from GMA News TV re: MAR's election as president of the Liberal Party, following in the footsteps of his late father, and grandfather, Manuel A. Roxas, president of the Republic, and founder of the LP in 1945.
Btw, I think it would be infinitely simpler and less chaotic if the country returns to the two-party system, much like U.S. Let's just have the LP and the Nacionalista Party field candidates to narrow down the choices for our kababayan, and weed out the incompetents and the plain greedy ambitious types.
After all the Presidentita and her husband's spine-chilling antics, it's time all politicos put the needs of the Philippines first, before their own interests. So Loren, please run for VP nalang?
UPDATE: Btw, I think Ping Lacson would make a good VP to MAR. Natakot ba kayo bigla? I'm serious. First of all it would be foolish for Lacson to throw his hat in the presidential elections considering that he (and you too Loren) doesn't have that much funds compared to MAR and Manny Villar. And having more than two presidential candidates would just split the votes and the country might just end up having another minority president like FVR was. But just imagine, MAR will take care of the economy and Lacson will handle the security issues. Whip those corrupt cops in line and rid our country of terrorists! If only Lacson can tame his ambitions for the country's good. O di ba Dream Team?
Let the games begin!