Forward political expense

OFF TANGENT - Aven Piramide - The Freeman

I have a friend who, with his legal background, is a serious observer of our socio-political idiosyncrasies. He saw me unannounced to exchange thoughts on some visible political developments. I told him that I would rather listen to him since I have retired from teaching law five years ago and he is a keener observer of unraveling events although in our hey days we always take opposing sides on most issues. He obliged.

For a kind of an opening remark, this friend of mine insisted that “we, Filipinos, are a people who flirt with entertainment. We are in love with it and we are unbelievable fans of entertainers” or words to that effect. That statement apparently was his major premise and he sounded extremely confident to discuss from there. Since I expressed earlier my preference to keep my mouth shut, he proceeded with intellectual depth. For his reasoning that I have yet to fathom, this friend lumped such activity as politics and sports in his definition of entertainment. I tried hard to follow his thoughts in remarkable profundity.

My friend proceeded to say that “there is no mistaking that some politicians (not all) aiming to take part in the 2025 midterm elections are actively campaigning more than a year before the actual voting. They are the practitioners of the saying “early bird catches worm”.

I could not disagree with him. High profiles in the national electoral scene are roaming around the country and making sure that their visits are well publicized. The ordinary mortals among us who do not have the opportunity to dine with these politicos or even just shake their hands are made aware of their visits thru massive news coverages and more. Have you seen the faces of Senators Maria Imelda Josefa Remedios "Imee" Romualdez Marcos and Christopher Lawrence "Bong" Tesoro Go printed on large size tarpaulins hanging along the major streets of our city like Escario Street in the upper part of midtown Cebu and MacArthur Boulevard in the eastern side of the city? What are printed on the tarpaulins are, in literary criteria, useless. These are messages designed only to remind the reader they visited our city, and nothing more.

“Pray, tell me because you taught constitutional law, have these two senators written any law that can lift our poor countrymen from abject poverty?” Honestly, I had no answer to my friend.

I told my friend my own observation. Few potential aspirants in local election are not to be outdone. As examples, there are new names like a Harold Kendrick Go and Yogi Ruiz. Not many know that they are a moneyed businessman and former bureaucrat. I saw their tarpaulins lined up along the road leading to the mountain barangay where I cultivate a very small farm.

In a sitio fiesta where Go’s tent served as shelter for the organizers of a sporting event, someone, probably thinking that I knew the man on the tarpaulin, approached me to ask who that Go guy was. I could only reply that he was a confidant of a dear friend of mine who had crossed to the great beyond.

When my friend was about to leave me, I could not help but point out the fact that Imee Marcos, Bong Go, Harold Go and Yogi Ruiz have not violated any law in putting their faces on tarpaulins which they hang everywhere. His retort embarrassed me: “oh yes, such huge sums of money are not considered as political expense which they might attempt to recover when they are in office!”

vuukle comment


  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with