Politics

Rowdy Rody

Try to bear with me here: Philippine Mayor Rodrigo Roa Duterte is a lot like a professional wrestler. Perhaps even for his most ardent supporters, Duterte is not exactly the most articulate or eloquent Chief Executive we ever had. But that espouses a certain kind of eloquence: one that assumes that everyone exists in polite society. …

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Politics

Tricky Revolutions

In yesterday’s paper, F. Sionil José began his essay with the word “revolution,” and proceeded to discuss what he called “the Duterte revolution” in ways that aren’t revolutionary. He describes the next few years in the same way a propagandist would describe his demagogue, or how a campaign manager would describe his client: the florid …

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Politics

The Boogeyman Cometh

As children, we were raised to believe that boogeymen existed. There were creatures that lived under our beds or inside our closets, ready to take us away in the night when we did something wrong. No matter how behaved, courteous, or quiet we were, the boogeyman was always there: the embodiment of fear in our …

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Politics

Squandered Politics

Great political leaders emerge from the choices that they make in times of great political opportunity. And in democracies like ours, those opportunities emerge from the challenges that frame an election. For this, we turn to examples in American history. Abraham Lincoln’s reelection in 1864, for example, had the backdrop of the American Civil War, …

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