Let’s go Loc-Local!



Last Sunday afternoon, someone handed my sister a stub through our house gate. It turned out to be a claim stub for free rice from a gubernatorial candidate. That was some nice timing. Had I known, I should not have bought five kilos of rice the day before. Stuff like this tells you that the local campaign has started. This is the time in every third of a decade when the roads just burst in a deafeningly loud blare of jingle, or some invitation to a rally at the barangay covered court. There’s this Andrew E song which I used to think is being played by an overzealous Pinoy rap fan, which turns out to be a campaign jingle; and of course, there’s this jingle based on the theme of a 1980’s Japanese animated series about five spaceships that combine to form a big robot. I also suggest that you watch for announcements on closing of roads to avoid problems on taking a ride home. It just happens that one needs to go to the plaza to take a connecting ride home from somewhere else, so one could not avoid the usual campaign events blasting out their jabber on the loud speakers in the plaza. In the few times that I have chanced upon some of them, I could not figure out who’s the candidate, and I would not want to stay long enough to find out. All that noise on top of the crowd, the slow moving traffic, the hustleand bustle of the street vendors and the heat from their frying street food, the pedestrians moving against each other’s directions, the tiring work day and the escalating summer heat, I would rather go home. (Not that I’m being apathetic; but I think I can find other ways to get to know the candidates.)


The local political for a (or at least, the ones so far, that have been held) are pretty interesting. There’s a mayoralty candidate who seems to have accidentally found his way in running for public office, and who spent more in-depth time in discussing about a favored food supplement product, over his actual platform of government. There’s one that seems to make decent sense but seems to trail behind because the incumbent has the upper hand because he is the incumbent. The latter guy I’m talking about seems to take every chance he could to take a swipe against one opponent that he seems to have a fondness to discredit and destroy. But there’s something interesting that I noticed. It seems that the local broadcast media is discreetly leaning in favor towards this one candidate. I listened to the radio the day after a political event, there was the customary report, then a soundbyte of this candidate. Another time, there was another report of that local political race for an executive position, then the soundbyte which was still from that candidate. Shouldn’t they be playing soundbytes from all candidates? Even from him who seems to use the political forum to sell food supplement? Okay, maybe I just missed the other soundbytes. But early on, I did notice that similar bias from other local media station. Well, I guess everyone’s entitled to his own choice.


Word in the barbershop is the obvious and expected front runner of the race is getting major jitters because he scraped off winning by a few thousands (the size of a barangay) worth of votes against the media-supported candidate. This time, the opponent seems to have maintained his support among the masses. Actually, that support seems to have grown stronger and have expanded to other strata of society. If that support proves its strength, and this nervous candidate gets too busy discrediting a former colleague, he might find himself getting passed by in the race. I’m not really sure if that’s going to be a good change; but if that would be how the will of the people would go, we have to let it through.


Is non-appearance in debates contagious? A local candidate seems to have caught the virus. I couldn’t blame him. One major candidate has been ignoring one too many debates, and tht practice does not seem to hurt his standing in the surveys. He’s still so popular. (Well, that is if you believe the surveys. Clinton used to lead all the surveys, then tragedy struck and Trump won.)


Wait a minute, have you come across that clip of a local official/candidate giving instructions to initiate a smear campaign on a list of local candidates on all different directions of districts? Or is that a sample of fake news in itself?


““In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity” -Titus 2:7