Republic of Politics

Filipinos love politics.

So we politicized our military. What was once clearly isolated from politics, distinct from the national police which is civilian in character, has become an indispensable political ally. Politics runs deep in the military that retired military generals either get appointed as cabinet members or run for political posts. Those kicked out of the service for leading coups can become senators.

We have also politicized the church. What was supposedly isolated from the state has become a political kingmaker. Religious leaders have become political endorsers, if not politicians themselves.

We have politicized the media. We did not even spare showbiz. The best way to get elected is to first become a TV personality. The current senate is composed of four actors, one fresh from a box-office hit, and two gentlemen married to two of the country’s most popular actresses.

And now, we have finally politicized our judiciary. What was once an independent institution has become another political playground. Its Chief Justice, feeling bullied by no less than the country’s President, fires back sounding very much like a traditional politician.

It seems the process is complete.

We have politicized all our major institutions. It seems perfect, especially in a country that treats politics as entertainment. It does not come as a surprise, therefore, that it’s more fun in the Philippines. We turn politics into entertainment, and then we politicized everything.

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2 responses to “Republic of Politics

  1. thanks for your comment! honestly, i don’t know where do we start to change it, but what i know is we have to want to change it first. we have built the illusion that treating politics as a form of amusement is amusing, and until we break that, until we start feeling disappointed, frustrated and angry, we reinforce the illusion. maybe it’s cultural, that we are not confrontational. and i guess we have to confront shame. kailangan din nating mahiya…

  2. Seems the POV of this piece is kinda pessimistic, but I guess that’s the truth. Is it a good thing? What do you propose we could change? Or is this inherent in our culture and we just have to deal with it?

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