A Turning Point in Philippines History?



I’ve always believe that if only Filipinos believe and love the Philippines, we can achieve any goals we set our minds and hearts to. This May 2007 marks the turning point in Philippine History. Perhaps this is the start of a tipping point towards Philippines’ greatness. I can feel it in the air and there is so much hope that we will become a great nation. Let me share with you why I’m so proud to be a Filipino today:

1. Congratulations to Noelle Wenceslao, Carina Dayondon, and Janet Belarmino for becoming the first Southeast Asian women to summit Everest, and the first women in the world to traverse Everest! I must admit that at first I did not have faith that they can do it but they proved us wrong. If they can climb Mount Everest, this gives hope and inspiration for all of us to conquer our own Everest. To think that Janet just gave birth to their five month old baby boy Himalaya. Ang galing ng Pinay! (Official Blog: Pinays on Everest)

2. God truly works in mysterious ways. Fr. Eddie Panlilio became the first Catholic priest in the country to be elected to public office in what is being touted as a “people-powered” unprecedented run for governor of Pampanga.

“Panlilio who got a total of 219,706 votes in the six-cornered race, winning by a lead of only 1,147 votes…The decisive votes that clinched his victory came from Magalang, a predominantly Catholic town, where 11,095 residents voted for him.Panlilio’s major rivals were Lilia Pineda, an incumbent provincial board member, who got 218,559 votes, and reelectionist Gov. Mark Lapid who received 210,875 votes.” (Miracle in Pampanga by Tonette Orejas )

3. The Filipino voters have matured politically!! Yes!! Finally, Filipinos are voting based on performance, results and credentials.

“The citizenry has become sick and tired of actors and actresses in elective posts. Cesar Montano, Richard Gomez, Christopher de Leon, Lito Lapid and his son Mark, all movie idols, suffered humiliation at the hands of lesser known personalities….The only exception is actress Vilma Santos who won by a big margin over incumbent Armand Sanchez in the Batangas gubernatorial race. The reason behind her victory is her exemplary performance as Lipa City mayor.”

“The biggest loser in the electoral contest is boxing idol Manny Pacquiao who ran for the congressional seat of South Cotabato. He suffered a knockout at the hands of a woman, reelectionist Darlene Antonino-Custodio, who was running scared and was the underdog.”
(Upsets in the just-concluded polls by Ramon Tulfo)

4. There is a mysterious reform movement happening in the country because everyone is sick and tired of the corruption in the government! Most of the Genuine Opposition are winning in the National Elections! I was surprised when I asked my mom who to vote, she said if you don’t know the candidates, just vote for the Genuine Opposition candidates. For the record, I voted for Noynoy Aquino, Joker Arroyo, Alan Cayetano, Chiz Escudero, Kiko Pangilinan, Sonia Roco, Antonio Trillanes, Manny Villar, Migz Zubiri, and Ang Kapatiran: Dr. B Bautista, Adrian Sison and Jess Pares. We were hoping for the Kapatiran to win but at least Trillanes was able to get in the top 12.

5. I can’t believe that the Peso to Dollar conversion rate is now at its all time low P46.xx to a $1 despite the elections! I love the graph below 🙂 Can we see a P40 to a $1 conversion rate? At this point, I am very optimistic 🙂

We are three years away from having a great leader for the Philippines. All of us need to be vigilant and this is an exciting time to be in the Philippines. Time to celebrate and invest in our country. We love the Philippines!


37 thoughts on “A Turning Point in Philippines History?

  1. Do we have to thank the opposition for the P 46.xx to 1 USD conversion rate? 😉
    I love you optimistic view! Let’s hope you are right!

  2. I’ve been quite saddened to see that a lot of cheating and violence happened once again during the recent elections, but as you have pointed out, there are still reasons to hope. Although disappointed, I was not surprised that the Kapatiran candidates lost. But I was heartened that most of the celebrities lost — even Pacquiao, who was touted to be a shoo-in. (Have you noticed that most of the celebrities are from the same party? Have you thought about how and why that happened? Buti nga sa kanila!) I was also very happy about Panlilio! Despite the money and machinery of his opponents, he and his loyal supporters prevailed. It was really David vs. Goliath. I’m uncomfortable about a priest holding a government position, but I’m thrilled about how he got there. Hopefully, what happened in Pampanga can influence the rest of the country. And I wish there were many, many more with your kind of optimism and national pride, Anton! 🙂

  3. I too am very happy that there seems to be a growing trend, again, of putting the opposing team on our political map. I just hope that all these individuals, who we have put in office, will not go the same power-hungry way as all the others. Yes, Fr. Panlilio is a welcome change. It still nags me, like a pebble in my shoe, that he still is a priest. We have fought long and hard to separate the powers of church and state so I hope that this will not kickstart a new era of the clergy dealing heavily in politics. On the brighter side, I look forward to June12. If all goes well maybe we can truly celebrate our Independence Day in the way we truly deserve. Cheers to you my fellow Filipino! 🙂

  4. Was it a glitch or a miracle? I am very surprised of the election too. Yes there were death and violence but compare to previous elections where there were so much cheating, death and violence, the recent one is showing some good sign of hope. I can feel that most Filipinos are using their common sense and inspiring intelligence choosing the right people. What we have to watch is the rampant corruption in all levels of government. We have to be vigilant. We can secretly video tape and use cell phones to capture and expose those corrupt government employees from the lowest to the highest rank. Too bad I’m here in LA and was not able to vote.

  5. Anton, it is Filipinos like you that really keep our country going. I love your optimism and vigilance in all this. Your pride and enthusiasm in the wonders of our country gives a lot of us colonial-minded people a reality check. You help give us all hope that our country will soon improve 🙂

  6. Hopeful times indeed…. the election results elicited a few surprises for the better, though political dynasties still rule.
    I like the picture of the flag hovering over the Manila skyline…where is that?

  7. The Vatican will eventually make Fr. Panlilio choose between the priesthood or politics.This has happened in other countries before.

  8. After the election comes the hard part of making sure those elected in office walks the straight line and live up to thier election sweet speeches about performing a graft free public service.

  9. Regarding Ed Panlilio: Perhaps he should learn from Grace Padaca. She really wanted to change a lot of things, sadly realpolitik involves more than heart.
    And why Trillanes, Anton? What did he do? More than that, what can one who chooses to grab arms and take the law into his own hands be a good legislator?

  10. I felt that this year’s election slate for senators was one of the worst in recent history. When are we going to require and enforce some form of standard of our elected officials? We should have them take a test to check if they even know what the constitution mandates, plus if they know how laws should be passed. It doesn’t take lawyers to do so, but someone with enough ability to read through it and ask good questions.
    I hope Panlilio is asked to make his choice re: his priesthood asap. And the Trillanes/Honasan gains are just another example of the voters to get rid of that macho guy image; these are men who promoted violence, even got people killed and now they’re in the Senate.
    The peso to dollar exchange has nothing to do with the officials we elect, but a lot to do with how the budget is used, the taxes collected, and most of all, how the dollar is doing in terms of global markets. It’s depressed against most major currencies.
    Okay, my pov is less positive than most, but I still think this country can do better. We have to keep demanding for more.

  11. Love your optimism Anton. We need the Pinoys to continue believing, to continue being proud of our country. Being based overseas due to work, it’s easy to think against coming back “for the sake of the children”. In my heart of hearts, I don’t think we can stay away permanently. We’ll always be Pinoys and we look forward to coming back to a more vibrant, more progressive country and be part of the positive change. Keep it up.

  12. Just like Ange, I am SO happy that there are vigilant Pinoys like you who see the good side of things happening in our country — something I could only wish the media would focus more on. This post is very inspiring and brings so much hope, Anton. Thank you for doing this and please keep doing this. Ang galing mo!

  13. Do you honestly think peso will still continue to appreciate once GMA’s term is done? Ewan ko lang, but I strongly feel that foreign investors are confident with our president’s capabilities kaya sila nagiivest dito.. =)

  14. While I admire your optimism, I have to agree with Mila about demanding more from ourselves and our fellow Filipinos. We can have hope for the Phils. while still seeing the situation as it is. It does no one any good to wear rose-colored glasses. The elections were NOT peaceful or even close to clean. The Maguindanao debacle is absolutely disgraceful! While I’m sure there was cheating on both sides, this was unbelievably blatant and shameless.
    The exchange rate might make it seem like the peso is appreciating, but the truth is also that the dollar is depreciating. And as for foreign investors — it’s foreigners, in fact, who have declared our elections a failure, and lambast GMA for her horrific human rights abuses.
    I’m not saying all this to dampen your hopes. But we can’t solve the problems if we don’t acknowledge that they’re there.

  15. I don’t think the genuine opposition has done anything but bad mouth other people. If there is someone we have to thank for the stronger peso, its GMA. How can someone who resorts to violence (Trillanes) be elected senator?

  16. The question now is, what will the winning GO senators do when they start working? I could think of some probabilities:
    – Continue opposing the Administration?
    – Regain their campaign expenses?
    – Prepare for the next election?
    – Impeach GMA?
    – Prosecute FGMA?
    I would have to disagree with Katrina, the stronger Peso is not brought about by GMA, but by the weakening US dollar value in the international market. And likewise, I’m also wondering how come Trillanes was elected? Face recall and value? Have the Filipino voters matured already? Sorry to be pessimistic, but I don’t think they have.
    Great post nonetheless anton.

  17. Aczafra, I don’t think you’re disagreeing with me; I think you’re disagreeing with Nadine. 😉

  18. The strong peso is brought about by the strong input of dollars by the lonely, suffering, and abused OFW and the weakening US dollar. Not by this cheating, incompetent, poor excuse for a president. If there’s a sector to thank its the OFW’s. They have kept the Philippine economy afloat. I don’t know who gave you the idea (whoever you are) that this Nora Aunor look alike and “height alike” brought upon the resurgence of the Peso.
    What bothers me about this election is the rise of dynasties all over the nation. Son of…daughter of…wife of…brother of…oh my goodness!!! Excuse my ignorance, but is there a law that control these events. It is an obvious attempt by the different political clans to keep power in their hands. A good example is Binay of Makati. Binay’s mayor now. Wife, ex-mayor, son (i can’t remember the elected position he won), daughter member of the house of reps. Once Binay’s term/s expire it will be his wife, son or daughter who will run for the position. D’uh.

  19. I agree with Nadine about the the only thing that the opposition did was bad mouth other people and in turn make a negative image of our country. That’s why I don’t like any of the opposition candidates.
    We only have to thank GMA for the good economy we have right now for she has put very good economic reforms in place hence the foreign investments coming in.
    Honasan & Trillanaes? Gosh, do we have elect those rebels to office as well as those ranting oppositionists? I’ve had enough of their blahs. Hopefully, now that some of them are winning, they will stop whining.

  20. Anton, I’m so glad you have pointed out things why we should be proud of being a Filipino right now. We should expect more and more of such things. We shall not lose hope for this country. I believe God has more things in store for us Filipinos if we just hold on to His word: “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people” (Proverbs 14:34). A righteous governance should be our battlecry now. Thank you for this blog entry.

  21. We, together with my family are also happy with election turnout. Hopefully, brother-in-law will be included in the magic 12.
    The Filipinos are really maturing in terms of the choices they make … especially when they know that it will affect the future generation.

  22. Why do you hate GMA so much? What has she done? Sure she might have cheated the presidential elections but its for the better! Imagine if we have ERAP or FPJ as president, what would happen to our country! GMA is an economist and she knows best how to mitigate the economic difficulties that our country is facing. Let me ask everyone, what is the plan of the GO team? Have they laid our steps on how to make our country better? Or have they laid our their own plans, not as a team, but as individuals on how to get GMA out of her seat and be the president so that they can get more money and fulfill their vested interests.

  23. Those who wanted the GO people, look at them now. Roco is accusing Chiz of cheating her in the elections specifically in Bicol. Coseteng is blaming her other teammates as well saying they cheated her. So see? They dont even trust their own teammates!!!! My goodness…. they can cheat their own party mates… all the more the entire country!! Wake up!!!

  24. hi anton! i love your blog so much but this topic really caught my attention. its not that I dont like the GO candidates its just that they are being endorsed by Erap… he is not credible and he was a lousy public servant… also Trillanes? He almost took the country’s economy to ground zero when he pulled that stunt in oakwood…

  25. I am one of the Filipinos who is optimistic that someday our country will be a better place to live in. I’m happy that the peso has appreciated and investments in stock market is doing great.
    I’m also happy that the actors didn’t make it to the senate and that the boxing champion Pacquiao lost in the election too. But I hope what happened to Pacquiao will not happen to other revered celebrities whose popularity has been used by those other politicians who convince them that they can help the Filipino people by being in politics. I hope there will be more people that can enlighten someone like him on other ways by which they can truly help the Filipino people.
    Yeah right. at some point people have matured but not completely. Why did people vote for Honasan and Trillanes? What form of government do they want? a Military form of government? I think most people voted them simply because they oppose the government. But why? The country’s economic growth has never been better in years. Can you at least give some credit to GMA. She has done something good for our country. Her financial plans are great. Just imagine if the other one was elected for president! (Sorry. may he RIP but come on! Just imagine if someone like him becomes the president.)
    Yes the good exchange rate is partly bec of the OFW remittances (thanks so much to them, they are heroes!) and I guess some could be attributed to new foreign investments too.
    Now, can you at least look at what good GMA had done? If she leads our country the way Erap led the government, do you think our economy would be any better?
    Reality check. We should really look at the brighter side of events.
    Still I can’t understand why people vote for Honasan, Trillanes and Erap’s party. Have you forgotten what they had done? What good have they done for our country? What are their plans? Can’t you see that they want to be elected only for personal gain? Now that they are elected let’s see…I hope I’m wrong about them. I hope they’ll do what can make this country a better place to live in.
    I hope next time people will vote people who really cares for other people and not just themselves. I hope we will be more vigilant next time.

  26. My ten cents.
    1. The peso is strengthening because of OFW, lower dollar value world wide and good fiscal policy of the govt. No matter what they say, GMA has contributed enough to merit such approval and we should commend her for that.
    2. GO is winning but it means nothing. They don’t provide us any alternative at all as they did not provide any flatforms at all. I still believe they are individuals who are just positioning themselves for 2010. Look At Peter Cayetano.
    3. Trillanes is bad. Just like what we learn in DBTI, the cause cannot justify the mean. =)
    4. Filipinos are not learning at all. The last election only shows that guns, goons and money still lords over elections.. We need to computerise the election and limit the expenditure…Vote buying is so prevailing.

  27. I will ask some questions not giving a comment..
    Why the philippine name has letter “S” PHILIPPINES?

  28. if you look at decades ‘ past ‘ philippine histories-events-social acomplishments etc.that resulted into personnal-territorial interests that impoverished philippines for decades instead of FOCUSING ON NATIONAL INTERESTS first- YOU will notice the BIG difference-results of president arroyo’s management abilities by narrowing down pragmatic actions like THOROUGH TAXING BASE SYSTEM into prosperities-as results.
    ‘arroyo talks less but act more’ she is SWIFT IN ACTIONS-FOCUS- PRAGMATIC but WITH COMMON SENSES a fool proof STATE OF THE ART ECONOMICS only if not sabotage by ignorant filipinos who instead SHOULD pay attention to results.

  29. kung ang ibang SELFISH filipinos has nothing better 100% to replaced the HARDWORKING-TENACIOUS arroyo administration it is best to watch her-be supportive of her NATIONAL PLATFORMS that narrows down into POSITIVE ACCOMPLISHMENTS as she more than doubled all her-their efforts before her 2010 deadline a turning point in philippines-world history REMEMBERING this ‘ petite ‘ almost fragile caring pragmatic
    intelligent dedicated tenacious PERO KALMADO artistic lady president WHO GIVES MORE THAN RECIEVED.

  30. ….as an american citizen i would appreciate if philippines lady president gloria macapagal arroyo can share her OFF LIMITS DREAMS TO AMERICANS….THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA including myself are waiting for gm arroyo to share some of her necessary-needed-wonderful off limits dreams i heard about recently….dreams that will prevent ANY KIND of U.S.RECESSION for us here in america….it will be CRUEL for any countries president’s to deny-not welcomed wonderful FRIENDLY dreams by his-her collegues in diplomatic world if dreams that will help friendly allies like americans to GET OUT of possible national recession few months ahead as american media’s advanced warnings are already out all over…..the media recession reports are alarming for us americans…..so gloria macapagal arroyo please share us NOW those off limits magical dreams{solutions}to possible U.S. recession that will make america smile and breath easier ahead…..we’re waiting for that solutions{america}….

  31. ….a typical signs of ‘inferior downhill catasthropic MINDS’ are those who wanted to change the ‘great’ things that makes their country{philippines}GREAT in the first place advancing prospering greening {on the path}enviromentally sounds healthier wiser happier and moving forward philippines due to lady pres.{gm.arroyo’s]almost 24 hours-7 days a week controversial-risky-almost an impossible GIGANTIC TASKS but ignored by tenacious non tiring MAPPING of all ECONOMIC-SOCIAL INGREDIENTS to run smoothly her past self serving {all parties}’government collegues’ undesciplined{businesses under the radar-illegal-compromising national interests activities}non chalant but over reacting[sometimes}passive chaotic corrupt complacent violent ‘non dreaming’ NON ambitious NON courageous dreamers to ‘at least’ reach higher standards-state of the art citizens of the FIRST world from large portions of the country….just in a few years gloria arroyo’s hard works-dreams transformed deteriorating{economic-political-social-industrial-envorimental-educational-in large debt ‘almost’ UNIMPORTANT PHILIPPINES….into a world fastest growing IMPORTANT economic-enviromental-social-educational powerhouse into amongst world’s necessary leader-thinker-manager-visionary of the future in the face of the earth
    side by side with all other fastest asian giants and world’s richest-most powerful countries-allies like united states of america and EUROPE and those from DOWN UNDER ALLIES….and YOU have not seen the best of her yet….see the wonder of NATURAL BLESSED DREAMS….just before she steps down….just to be possibly RUIN by the wrong kind replacing her…or NOT if whoever replaced her AFTER 2010 will guarantee not to be self serving-will make sure BLESSED NATURAL DREAMS keeps-meets it’s peaceful-beautiful-wonderful future of the world….good luck….to A WONDERFUL FUTURE WORLD….cil

  32. ….S….why philippines-pilipinas has letter S?….well for many reasons….only those who originally thought of the name philippines can pin point the very real first reason out of many reasons….few of the many reasons from originators initial thinkers was….the wishful thinking of a great foreign european king scholars consuls religious leaders thinkers ambassadors of goodwill who also knew-saw philippines as a beautiful spicy exotic many islands not just one {plurality} you can also believe that they or the europeans-americans saw-smell so many pine trees and abundant pineapples in plantations lol!….or it reminded them of someone-place or….maybe no particular meaning at all….maybe it just happened to be called philippines because it sounded better unique and exotic perhaps lol!….personally i will go to all possibilities lol!

  33. ….above comment…i was talking about the letter s only….not the whole name philippines who was named after king phillip of spain….

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