A better Philippines under President Miriam Defensor-Santiago

She may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but Miriam Defensor-Santiago (MDS) is definitely not like all the rest of them. And, suddenly, just like that, there is a viable standout above the three uninspiring, undifferentiated, pwede-na-yan presidential candidates. With Santiago in the race, there will be a political debate. The sad none-of-the-above choices now have a true statesman to challenge their idiotic campaign on the back of sacrifice platforms.

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For Santiago, her vision for the Philippines is quite simple: When she becomes president, “this country will be much better than it was before.”

“Today, this country suffers from the malaise of plunder. Plunder is when you look at one person and that other person looks at you and you feel like eating each other up. It’s like cancer,” she added.

Santiago joins other presidential hopefuls Vice-President Jejomar Binay, former DILG chief Mar Roxas, Sen. Grace Poe, among others.

The only reason Filipinos feel a bit squeamish about an MDS presidency is because she is, to put it succinctly, quite blunt. In the Philippines’ stifling delicadeza culture, being in-your-face rubs people who are obsessed with saving face the wrong way. James Fallows in his seminal 1987 The Atlantic article A Damaged Culture: A New Philippines? could not have said it better; “The Filipino ethic of delicadeza, their equivalent of saving face, encourages people to raise unpleasant topics indirectly, or, better still, not to raise them at all.”

MDS proved in many instances that she will not balk at telling anyone the way it is. And in a country where time is desperately running out, there is a bigger chance that MDS’s style won’t be a time-waster. As Ilda pointed out back in 2012 when Santiago stood out as the sole annoying voice of reason at the height of the impeachment trial of former Chief Justice Renato Corona…

With most of our ASEAN neighbors moving ahead in full steam, we don’t have time for misguided “delicadeza”. It is high time we get rid of this notion of saving face. We do more damage to our society when we turn a blind eye to our public servants’ shenanigans. Some Filipinos think that supporting a public servant they voted for means not criticizing him. Like what I have said before, there is a misguided notion among Filipinos that their public servants will eventually do what they are being paid to do. This is wrong and this is part of the reasons things never go according to plan in the Philippines.

Indeed, the stark reality in the way the Philippines’ most appalling criminal acts perpetrated by the very people Filipinos have placed their utmost trust on routinely go unpunished seems to trace its roots to this cultural malaise. It is quite likely that Filipino politicians and their extended network of oligarchs have been engaged in a vast mutual back-scratching arrangement for the most part of the Philippines’ history as a “democratic” nation. Outside of this grand collusion to put one over the farce that is the Philippines’ justice system is the rest of the Filipino people — left to lap up the bullshit delivered over pretentious speeches and Big-Media-greased public relations stunts in blissful ignorance.

Hopefully Miriam Defensor-Santiago lives up to her reputation as that rare politician who is allergic to the banal bullshittery that is the Philippine national “debate” and rises to the occasion as one who begs to differ for a change.

Abangan ang susunod na kabanata.

[Photo courtesy Asia Gaming Brief.]

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41 Comments on “A better Philippines under President Miriam Defensor-Santiago”

  1. My main concern with her right now is that she has stage 4 lung cancer. I’m not sure if she’s recovering as of this moment. Nonetheless, she’s a more viable candidate than Poe, Binay, and Roxas.

    1. The only solution to this problem @OnesimusUnbound is she should choose Duterte as her VP and if ever she’ll die in the middle of her presidential term due to a lung cancer (and don’t forget she even have a high blood), then he’ll become our country’s next president and business as usual for the New Philippines! And that will be our national wet dream to come true. 😀

  2. One thing I’m afraid of is that she loses to another populist candidate. Again.

    Hopefully, she can win it this time around. Third time’s a charm, eh?

    PS: Who’s gonna be her vice? I wish it’s Gordon.

  3. This Woman was deemed unfit for service at the I.C.C after she was confirmed and had the job. The Woman’s incessant rantings were seen at the sham trial at the Senate of Renato ‘SALN ,ALL OF YOU’ Corona ans she was deemed unfit for service. Now, if the Woman is judged to be unfit to sit as an arbiter of International ‘Juris-Prudencia’, is she really qualified to lead a country? Go ahead elect this psychopath, but not until she gives a detailed accounting of all the Psychotropic medcations she is taking.

    The Woman is a looney-tune.

    1. You said deemed unfit??? show published proof of your comment… if none… then I call you a liar & a black propagandist!

    2. Sen. Santiago resigned from her appointment to ICC (June 2014) due to health reason and NOT because of “psychopathic” issue as you seem to suggest. If there is anyone who has mental health it is your idol BS Aquino with an Asperger Syndrome; and he’s in charge of running da Pinas!? Gooooooo figure.

    3. C’mon, that reason is crap! Other presidential candidates only look physically fit but honestly, intellectually, mentally, delikadesally, etc. they are NOT! They will only bring sickness to the country instead of solving it. You’re not seeing the whole picture. You don’t know a thing so get lost you lunatic and vote for your own president who will bring sickness to us all.. dumb!

  4. I respect and admire your support for Miriam and sorry to say my concerns below:

    1. Age of Miriam is already above 70yrs old (same W/ Duterte & Binay). The retiring age nowadays is only 60-65yrs. So imagine just how big pressure & work is demanded being President?

    2. Miriam had her chance to be President but was cheated by FVR. How can she prevent hocus PCOS cheating?

    Note: I also voted Miriam

    Not exactly my ideal candidate, but it seems no better choice na. Except my comment, Miriam, BBM and Duterte belong in my
    No Hit list.
    And besides w/out clear support, how can I push for my NOTA candidacy?

  5. Miriam, BBM and Duterte they ALL belong in your “no hit list” does that mean that either Roxas or Binay suited to your cup of tea?

    Do you have evidence to support your assertion that septuagenarian Presidents from the past and presents had have not performed their duties because of such particular age you so-defined of such feeble rhetorics…

    We have a saying, “In the crown of snow there cometh wisdom” that’s the understatement Miriam has to offer… She will end her legacy serving her country WITH that EXPERIENCE… please bear that in mind sir @Dale Jose Gozar

    1. Leonard – my comment is a mix of hope (competent candidate) and a bit of being concerned on health condition of MDS especially when she admitted recently recovered from CANCER.

      What I said is a legit and valid question. Maybe it’s the only issue against MDS – w/c I believe supporters like you can easily answer.

  6. MDS has been treated. Her type of cancer is NON-METALISTIC CANCER. It doesn’t spread. It was just hidden for a long time so Doctors were not able to diagnose it…So she can manage and can reform well our Country compared to other Presidentiable race…

  7. “time is desperately running out”

    Indeed. Achieving “Singapore” status in 30 years looks much more feasible under an MDS presidency.

    I sense MDS is now making a final sacrifice. The stress of a presidency can might as well end her life mid-term considering her health condition.

    She’s making this big sacrifice just to save us all from the 3 stooges. Maybe she is the living embodiment of the now famous line “the Filipino is worth dying for”.

    A genuine hero sacrifices him/herself – rather than riding on the sacrifice of a close relative who recently passed away. I hope Pinoys will be more discerning.

    1. why on earth do we want a “singapore” status?? why not a decent country for Filipinos, by Filipinos, with Filipino standards?

  8. There is no future in the past. Any tour into the past is perhaps courage to live at the average level as you did; old and cold, blind and blunt! Come out! Out of the past and change position. You matter, your future matters.

  9. I don’t believe any president hopefuls can change the colonial and crab ways of the Filipino people. That change will have to come from each and every Filipino.

    1. Sorry, I did not hear what you said Aeta.

      I was on facebook on my cellphone watching a video of a monkey scratching his ass and smelling his fingers, while following some totally retarded noon time game show on TV.

      1. That’s okay Jim DiGritz.

        I don’t have to watch the latest Philippine trend on facebook to know that those same monkeys are glued in front of their television set, watching a “retarded” program and scratching their “starstruck” asses.

    2. And a year later Filipinos still have a colonial and crab mentality under the new admin…oh it’s even more distinct now than its before..so much you can smell it I guess

  10. Even though Miriam is highly intelligent and educated, she has proven over and over that she is a bit of a fruitcake.

    But at least the fruitcake demands respect, not like the other limp sausages running for office.

    This country needs a leader people fear and respect. Miriam in her unpredictable way might just be that person. She might throw a noisy hissy fit here and there, but maybe by being in peoples faces in REAL HD she’ll actually get things done.

    Enough of the immature, idiotic antics of government officials. Call people stupid when they are! Miriam certainly will.

  11. I agree with Jim. This country needs someone who is stubborn enough to get things done. I truly believe this is the time for REAL change, and it will start with us, voting for someone responsible enough to stand for the truth and for the Filipino people. #MiriamBongBong2016

    1. No one is responsible enough in the Philippines. What the Filipinos need is a complete overhaul of their corrupt value system.

  12. There is a certain evil to people who are generally nice. Don’t you guys agree? I mean MDS’ style is as blunt as mallet head strike that and inflicts them with a bulldozer like trample whoever gets in her way. its this kind of leadership that will pave the way putting a tight leash on the our countrymen’s neck that are so happily showering in too much democracy. I have always looked at her as an unorthodox leader kinda like Nietzsche in which teachings are as somewhat morbid but it reeks of truth. we need people who thinks outside of the box to come up with unorthodox methods. we are freakin running out of time.really.

  13. This Lady is another in a long line of Filipino BS artists that like to say the ‘went to Harvard’,LOL. Yes, they went there but were delivering food to store the cafeteria.
    Anyone that has paid attention to any of her speeches in the last 5 years knows that she doesn’t always stay on track and her use of words makes the dull-witted marvel but anyone with access to a dictionary knows she is usng some of the words incorrectly,OOPS !
    Miriam ,as she is lovingly called by her admirer’s, is a few cards shy of a full deck. The ICC had a seat all ready for her before she self-destructed on International television. Seen as a ticking time bomb and a loose cannon capable of sinking large ships, she was dismissed quietly before ever even arriving in The Hague and never hearing a single case.
    Like a drunkard that is handed the biggest opportunity of his life and then at exactly the wrong moment brings the entire building he is in crashing down on his head thus fucking everything up. The one thing going for the dysfunctional Grande Dame of the Fail-ippines just may be is that the country is soooo screwed up and a complete basket-case of a country that maybe one or two problems could at least be addressed, not fixed but addressed, before she self-destructs again.Even a broken clock is right twice a day.
    Other than that there is little the Woman can offer any longer. Her time to shine has come and gone and she blew it as she wasn’t meant for the big time and proved it.

  14. Anyone saw Miriam on TV lately. Man does she look sickly and she sounded incoherent. She used to be spry and feisty. Perhaps Marcos is trying to pull off a “Weekend at Bernie’s” to sneak into the Presidency as a sure successor.

    Isn’t it ironic how she could say “The country suffers a malaise of plunder” and then turns around and joins Enrile, Marcos and Erap? Talk and action don’t match. Therefore can’t trust her. Sorry.

  15. Philippines today is like a very poor version of late 19th century to early 20th century USA (minus the military power of course), complete with underpaid workers (factory workers in USA then, farmers in the Philippines now).

    What helped change USA at that time was a guy named Theodore Roosevelt. Teddy Roosevelt in my opinion is the best US president since Lincoln, since he regulated the really powerful big businesses at that time, and helped in preserving natural parks. Not only that, but during his political career, he fought against corruption even if it involved his own party, the Republican Party.

    From what I have read and watched, Teddy Roosevelt has a fiery personality, believed that he had a responsibility to his people, and acted upon it. He was also a determined man for he was a weak child and did what he can to strengthen himself.

    What was the point in knowing all that? My point is that as many have already said “Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it”, does not mean only looking at our own history but we should also look at the history of the world around us. I don’t want the Philippines to become worse than it already is.

    While I don’t believe any person can be Teddy Roosevelt, out of all the candidates running for president, Miriam Santiago is the only one we have that is closely similar to him. She possess the same fiery personality and the bluntness that this country and its people need. Even in her absences because of her sickness, she was the one who had the most bills and resolutions filed.

    I do hope that she retains those attributes if she becomes President, and if her health permits it, still remain as confrontational as ever.

    As regards her health, well my opinion in this matter is that, I’d rather have a short but productive Presidency by Miriam than long but mediocre Presidency by the other candidates. And more importantly, since she has nothing to lose, I believe that she would do her job well.

    As for us ordinary Filipinos, we can help change this country by being more disciplined. If Teddy Roosevelt managed to overcome being a weak child, we should also be able to change ourselves for the better.

    The are many books and videos that fully detail Teddy Roosevelt’s life. I suggest that when you have spare time, to see it and hopefully be inspired by him. And as for the bills filed by Miriam Santiago, it can easily be found online.

  16. From: Link

    Academic Excellence

    Dr. Santiago is one of the most intellectually brilliant leaders that our country has ever seen. She earned the degrees Bachelor of Arts, magna cum laude; and Bachelor of Laws, cum laude, from the University of the Philippines. She went abroad and earned the graduate degrees of Master of Laws, and Doctor of Juridical Science, from the University of Michigan, one of the top three law schools in the United States. She finished the academic requirements for the degree Master of Arts in Religious Studies, at the Maryhill School of Theology.

    In U.P., the perfect grade is 1.0. In her last undergraduate semester, Dr. Santiago earned the near-perfect average grade of 1.1. And she finished her 4-year course in only 3-1/2 years. At the University of Michigan, she was a Barbour Scholar and DeWitt Fellow. She finished her master’s degree in only one year, and her doctorate in only six months.

    Our guest speaker loves learning. She has done postdoctoral studies all over the world, including Oxford University, Cambridge University, Harvard University, University of California at Berkeley, Stanford University, and Academy of Public International Law at the Peace Palace (the seat of the International Court of Justice), at The Hague, Netherlands.

    Dr. Santiago was class valedictorian at all levels – elementary, high school, and college. She made history in U.P. when she became the first female editor-in-chief of the famous student newspaper, Philippine Collegian, thus shattering a 50-year old record of male dominance. She won as Best Debater in the annual U.P. law debate, where she was captain of the winning team. It is interesting that at the same time she held a campus beauty title, not once but twice – as ROTC corps sponsor.

    #DutertevsMiriam2016 #Halalan2016

  17. Sad, we really miss her & she died 2 months ago. The Iron Lady of Asia who’d never become a president of our land. #RIPMiriam :*(

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