I followed the campaign and election of Barack Obama very closely. I woke up every morning to Wolf Blitzer’s Situation Room, tracked the state-by-state delegate count during the Democratic primaries, and caught up with all the media oddities from Sarah Palin to Joe the Plumber.
Since my university days, I’ve always been mystified by the alchemy of elections. I saw it for the political contest that it was, on one hand, and the confluence of media, human behavior, and faux spirituality it also was, on the other.
Last week I finished reading Richard Wolffe’s Renegade, a journalist’s account of the Obama campaign. I am currently in the middle of The Audacity to Win by David Plouffe, Barack Obama’s campaign manager. And soon I’ll be grabbing my copy of Game Change by journalists John Heilemann and Mark Halperin who promised some very juicy revelations about the campaigns behind the scenes.
Having followed the 2008 elections so closely has taught me so many things. While I don’t discount the multitude of differences we have with American politics, I’ve always considered myself a student of human nature – and politics is just one such human (and thus imperfect) act.
I have a lot to say about our upcoming national elections.
I have absolutely no confidence in Noynoy Aquino. Some people are equating him with Obama and are even trying to take a page from his playbook (for instance reducing the upcoming elections to one about change) but they couldn’t be more misinformed. And misleading!
Manny Villar is not to be trusted. He is doing everything a traditional politician has to do in order to win elections in this country. And he’s doing it very, very well.
You could not have worse fortunes than Gibo Teodoro. All things being equal, he is a promising candidate, deftly intelligent, and has good political touch. However, he is running under the worst circumstances possible having been declared the standard bearer of LAKAS-Kampi-CMD, the party of the much despised incumbent, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. His is the most uphill of uphill climbs, and I worry that he is not doing the moves he has to make to stand a decent – though still farfetched – shot.
Besides the candidates I also hope to talk about more philosophical issues such as how much should we consider winnability in making our choice, or whether we vote someone of character or of competence (why not both).
I really hope to write more on the elections, for whatever purpose it may serve. For sure I have gotten very rusty, and my hands don’t glide over these keys as smoothly as before but I’ll get there.
Cracking my knuckles now.