is a world-famous boxer who has held world titles in eight different divisions, a feat no other boxer has come close to accomplishing. He became a representative in 2010 and in 2016 was elected to one of the Philippines' 24 senatorial posts, all the while continuing his boxing career. He quit boxing after losing a match to Cuba's Yordenis Ugas just two months ago, with a final record of 68 wins, 8 losses, and 2 draws, as well as the notable accomplishment of defeating 22 world champions over the span of his career. Pacquiao in his five years in the Senate has filed 31 Senate bills; perhaps the most controversial of these, a bill that is still pending, would restore the death penalty in the Philippines. Pacquiao is running for president as a member of the Cebu-based party PROMDI.
was born in the slums of Tondo, Manila. As the boy Francisco Domogoso, Moreno gathered bottles and old newspapers to sell to junk dealers, and dived restaurant dumpsters to bring home edibles for his family. His father, a stevedore, made little. When he was 19, a talent scout convinced him to audition for a teen variety show that was then very popular; he won a place as a presenter on the show, then won acting roles in a number of films, adopting "Isko Moreno" as his screen name. At 23, he cut back on his acting stints to pursue government service and won elections for councillor, then vice mayor of Manila. He lost a bid for a senate seat in 2016, then won Manila's mayoral election in 2019. As mayor, Moreno has won plaudits for innovations he has introduced in secondary and higher education, for his city beautification projects, and for his handling of the Covid pandemic in Manila. He's a very energetic populist, and he announced for the presidency one month ago. His party is Aksyon Demokratiko.
is the current vice president of the Philippines. As mentioned in an earlier posting, the presidency and vice presidency are voted upon separately here, and Robredo has been at loggerheads with her president almost since she attained office. Booted out of the cabinet due to her oppositional stances regarding a number of Duterte's policies, she became the loudest public voice critical of the administration, and particularly of the "drug war" Duterte had initiated at the start of his term. In 2019, probably in a bid to control his vice president's outspokenness, Duterte appointed Robredo as co-chairperson of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs, then found it necessary to fire her 19 days later. During her term, though not a member of the cabinet, Robredo has led an anti-poverty program and seems to have led all government assistance in typhoon, earthquake, and volcanic eruption relief. Politically she is left of center, and is running for the presidency with the Liberal Party.
Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa
served as chief of the Philippine National Police from 2016 to 2018 and led the drug war of the current administration during that time. Despite the public outcry at the number of extrajudicial killings by police (which are estimated to number between 20,000 and 30,000 at this date), Dela Rosa is proud of his accomplishment in the first two years of the drug war, pointing out that crime nationwide decreased. and that a legion of "drug personalities" had surrendered to police rather than face their wrath. He attained the mandatory retirement age for national police chiefs at age 56 in 2018, served a stint as director of prisons for a few months, then won the election for a Senate seat in 2019. Among the bills Dela Rosa has authored, one would establish crisis centers for street children in every region in the Philippines, and another would create barangay community peace and order councils, but this fellow is clearly well to the right of center, politically. He is running for president with the PDP–Laban faction supported by President Duterte.
has served as a senator since 2016, and before that from 2001 to 2013 (senators here are not allowed to serve more than two consecutive terms). Before that he won reputation as a leader in the armed services and as the leader of a number of crime task forces. The 73 year old is widely seen as the "watchdog" of the national budget, over the course of his terms in office advocating against the pork barrel system and serving in important management roles for three administrations. Among the many bills written by him that have been passed into law, the Sin Tax Reform Act restructured excise taxes on alcohol and tobacco products, Senate Bill No. 2783 strengthened further the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2001, and another bill provided for a comprehensive law on firearms, light weapons and ammunition. Another bill he has proposed recently is the Anti-Political Dynasty Act, which would disenable families from locking a hold on any political office. A law and order guy for sure, and apparently with no blood on his hands. Lacson is running with the political party of which he is the current chairman, Partido Reporma.
Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr.
became governor of his home province, Ilocos Norte, in 1983 at the age of 26. His father was then in his eleventh year of autocratic rule in a country under martial law. Three years later the People Power Revolution swept the autocrat (and kleptocrat) from power; Marcos and his family fled to Hawaii from the American Clark Army Base with 22 crates of cash valued at $717 million, a 12 by 4 ft box crammed full of pearls, a vast array of jewels, and deposit slips to non-Philippine banks worth $124 million. Even at the time Marcos was so unceremoniously evicted from Malacanang Palace, he was suffering from the kidney disease that took his life on Hawaii in 1989. . . . And then, the dictator gone forever, President Corazon Aquino made the momentous decision to allow the Marcos family to return to the Philippines.
Two of the Marcos children went into politics. Court cases have recouped some of the stolen money for the Philippine government, but it is estimated that hundreds of millions (in American dollars) are still unaccounted for. Marcos, Jr. became a representative, then a senator (2010-2016). He ran for the vice presidency in 2016 and lost by more than 200,00 votes to Leni Robredo; he filed a petition with the courts claiming there had been vote cheating; recounts were held in three provinces, and Robredo gained more than 10,000 votes in the recounts. Does this sound familiar to you, American reader? The other Marcos sibling, Imee, is currently a senator.
And now Marcos, Jr. is making a bid for the presidency, running under the banner of the Partido Federal ng Pilipinas, the party he chairs. I haven't looked into his politics yet; I'm put off by all his downplaying of the graft, corruption, and human rights abuses that took place under his father's administration -- evils he could well have had a part in, as he was 28 at the time of his father's downfall. Larry, my friend up in San Jose City, is a supporter of Marcos; maybe sometime I should drive up there, have a sit-down with him, find out what he sees in this man.
sir ciao did not make it. we tried to revive her several times but there's no response. oxygen and a medication to stimulate her heartbeat has already been supplemented while we're reviving her but she didn't respond to any of that.
This was the text from Synervet I read before breakfast next morning. I drove over there later in the morning to say goodbye to Ciao, pay the bill, and take Bob home with me. I was pretty sure they'd let me take Bob; their last report for him had been a good one.
And now I'm typing this with Bob at my feet whining, craving for attention. He's a little off-balance at times, but seems fit otherwise. Ah, Ciao.