What’s all the fuss about? Filipinos by now should be very well familiar with the way Floyd Mayweather beat Manny Pacquiao in today’s bout. The key insight here is what disappointed Filipinos are now telling themselves:
Mayweather may have won, but Pacquiao was the better fighter.
Mayweather was obviously the smarter fighter. He got the system to work for him. He got the points without having to fight. Sound familiar? That’s because the Pacquiao-Mayweather fight was a microcosm of Philippine politics. In Philippine politics, the usual people routinely win on points (i.e., they get the votes). But do the votes actually determine the true leaders? Filipinos already know the painful answer to that question.
Funny that Filipinos read the outcome of today’s fight right. We see where the points went but know at heart who the better fighter was, because he fought well. Nonetheless, it is clear who the system regards as the winner today. Fortunately for Filipinos, they have a choice (at least in their heads) who they will regard as their winner.
Unfortunately it is not like that in Philippine politics. Like Mayweather, perhaps, Filipino politicians can run around the ring taking jabs at their opponents every now and then to score points while the true leaders go after them with attacks of real substance. But unlike Mayweather who attracted jeers with his winning strategy, Filipino politicians and their empty jabs routinely get the cheers plus the win. And the real leaders who throw the real hard punches — those with actual ideas to field against their foes get the jeers. Or worse, are simply ignored.
If only Filipinos can read a political match as well as they could read a boxing match. If only they could be as good with identifying the real fighters outside of the ring as well as they do inside it.
Filipino politicians are smart in the sense that they know how to work Philippine politics for the win, just like Mayweather won against Pacquiao by being the smarter boxer today.
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