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Apr 11

Predicting a magical transformation

The papers continue to focus on the recent operation of the President’s husband, who remains on a ventilator and undergoing dialysis. The President (after a harrowing night) has set up office in the hospital for the duration of her husband’s medical emergency. The ceasefire continues (and deservedly so).

Table Pes2007-2Senpref
Meanwhile, the politically-inclined continue to pore over the latest Pulse Asia senatorial survey results (see Pulse Asia’s own media release). For analyses of what the numbers indicate, please take a look at Inquirer Current. The Business Mirror report quotes a Pulse Asia official as saying most voters have decided on 8-9 candidates. This makes me wonder if the old system (1946-1972) of electing senators in batches of 8, wasn’t more practical, and wiser. 12 at a pop seems too many.

Here are the updated graphs I made regarding the results (there are now three data points for the campaign, so that’s interesting in itself, you basically have a pre-election and campaign set for each of the major candidates):

Survey1-3
Survey2-2
Survey3-2
Survey4-2

But I’d like to preserve, for posterity, something Tony Lopez has written:

The Genuine Opposition wants to capture the Senate. Eight of its 11 candidates are likely to win—if you believe surveys, which in the past had been dead wrong.

The administration predicts a 9-3 victory, something that will defy public opinion. But then the Arroyo administration had defied public opinion before and survived. It even triumphed.

Lopez’s statement is, of course, part of the ongoing Palace party line. And to be sure, there are five weeks left in the campaign. But the trajectory of the candidates is there, and he is making himself party to an effort that is, to put it mildly, dangerous. But then Lopez’s conditioning is of a piece with that of the Secretary of the Cabinet:

Spotty surveys and analyses become especially damaging during elections. Trust in democracy may suffer if actual voting results contradict mistaken expectations engendered by surveys. Hence, the citizenry should continually be reminded that the people’s will only be revealed on May 14, never in any survey. In the last voter polls in 2004, President Arroyo led Fernando Poe Jr. by six- to seven-percentage points, or more than 2 million votes. She won by only 1.1 million.

In other campaign-related news: Team Unity belatedly goes on line. You can compare the Team Unity (an old-fashioned static website) and Genuine Opposition (a blog) websites. GO has unveiled new TV ads, too.

As I was trying to post this, the latest survey on trust ratings came out, too:

Table1 Pes2007-2 Trust
Table2A Pes2007-2-Trust
Table2B Pes2007-2-Trust
These numbers will certainly come as a shocker to some.
Meanwhile, Filipinos overseas are already in the thick of the voting process. The numbers abroad are already large enough, to my mind, to be significant in terms of the last few slots in the senate race. But as Winston Marbella notes in the last part of his series, whether at home or abroad, guarding the vote is key.

In the punditocracy, the Inquirer editorial bats for revealing who the nominees of the various party-list parties are. This news story on the Comelec Chairman’s brother, helps explain why.

Manuel Buencamino says the Catholic hierarchy had better be serious about clean elections. JB Baylon enumerates some criteria for voting.

Bong Austero writes on Sonia Roco losing some votes due to a remark she made using an Autism analogy. Austero closes with the pointed comment that, which on the face of it, seems to be true (I could quibble with it, but I won’t). But his column does bring to mind a recent blog entry in History Unfolding. As Roco’s remark, Austero’s response, History Unfolding’s views, and if you recall, the recent debate about the (im)propriety of how some invocations are worded, and my own disagreements with Justice Isagani Cruz indicates, we are all trying to negotiate a new linguistic landscape with lots of jealously-guarded land mines.

Mailing lists are abuzz about a new Time Magazine essay by Joel Stein, which mentions Jolibee (and not in a flattering way, Stein’s obviously freaked out by the Filipino love affair with mayonnaise).

In the blogosphere, Fats, Vitamins, and Minerals writes of the last -yes, the last- Philippine astronomer.Taking up from an older discussion, while baratillo@cubao sees no problem with being a person of both faith and reason.

Thought the blogosphere is not without irony? See faith, hope & accommodation.

AlterNation101 says there are only two choices: to boycott the elections or vote for Ang Kapatiran.
blurry brain is wary of free trade agreements with individual nations.

And Nostalgia Boggista makes for a fun read.

Do try to attend the 3rd Philippine Blogging Summit. Here’s a map.

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  1. cvj

    For the blogging summit, i hope they invite Benj to do the invocation.

  2. manuelbuencamino

    Joel Stein caught the true clash of civilizations. You can now throw away Huntington’s book which was nothing but neocon propaganda anyway.

  3. supremo

    The sidelining of Mike Arroyo will have a large impact on the outcome of the upcoming election. One less person to manipulate the election. One less person to call Garci and the gang. KAMPI is disabled without him.

  4. Sir Martin

    Thanks for the link to that Joel Stein article!

  5. UPn student

    And speaking of a land-shift magical transformation (that signals that the world moves on with or without a Philippines united):

    Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, by visiting Tokyo this week, marks the latest step in what appears to be a remarkable turnaround in the China-Japan relationship.

    To remember : China has stoked regional concerns of a resurgent Japanese nationalism. The issue came to a head in the spring of 2005, when demonstrations in China over Japan’s alleged whitewashing of its wartime past in school texts turned violent and demonstrators attacked Japanese consulates, supermarkets, and restaurants.

    Yet since then both China and Japan have stepped back. It is noteworthy that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe who took office last September made Beijing, not Washington, his first port of call.

    Mr. Wen has described this visit, which starts Wednesday, as an ice-melting exercise and has been keen to stress the importance of a healthy relationship. The two leaders are expected to discuss their countries’ booming trade, environmental cooperation – and may touch on more-contentious territorial and energy disputes. Wen will speak to the Diet, or parliament – the first time a Chinese leader has done so in more than 20 years – and is even scheduled to play baseball with college students in western Japan.

  6. justice league

    Stein’s article seems to make it appear that McDonald’s came here before Jolibee was born.

    I seem to remember that Jolibee already existed before McDonald’s opened a branch in Makati. There was even a brouhaha there as the then Makati mayor alleged that Mc offered a bribe so they could get a permit. THe Mayor even insulted the taste of the McDonald burger.

    Being a “devourer” of burgers; I remember the famous burger houses (before Jolibee ran away from the pack) then were Big Daddy’s, Big 20 or 20/20, Tropical Hut, etc…

    Jolibee even had a in/famous cultivated worm as ingredient “scare”. Jolibee discount coupons were flying in the wind or trodden under our shoes when the scare reached its height.

    Of the lot, only Tropical hut has survived to the present with Jolibee and McDonald’s . Actually I like Tropical more than Jolibee.

  7. Bencard

    I hate to sound cynical about Panfilo Lacson’s and A.P. Cayetano’s expression of good wishes for the FG, but it’s sort of like handing a $100 bill to salvation army in front of t.v. camera. It could get a few cheap votes, wouldn’t it? It would have been better if they kept their sentiment to themselves.

  8. Francis

    sino ba me sakit si GMA or si FGMA?

  9. Mayk

    There are three members from the Philippines in the IAU (International Astronomical Society). http://www.iau.org Aside from Oscar Delas Alas, there’s Bernardo Soriano and Cynthia Celebre.

    http://www.pagasa.dost.gov.ph/agssb/contct.html

    There are also a lot of amateur astronomy groups.

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